December 26, 2011

Long Run and Christmas

18 milers scheduled for the long run for this week.  Sunday is usually the day for my long runs, but I didn't really want to  spend 3-4 hours Christmas morning out running.  So, I planned to run on Saturday (Christmas Eve) instead.  Because of a wild personal schedule, rain, weather, and shopping, I only had about a day and a half rest between what I thought was a brutal 5 mile speed workout and my long run.

Last week it was my hip that was bothering me.  Well, after a wonderful massage session where Rachel stretched out all my hip muscles (she said I was very tight), my hip hardly hurts at all.   Now, because of what I diagnose as "not enough rest time between runs", I am having knee pain.

I have iced, motrined, and elevated - but still is a little tender.  I will see what the easy 2 miler feels like tomorrow morning.  When my hip was hurting - I was debating with myself about dropping back and only doing the half marathon in 3 weeks.  Now - it is probably even more likely.  It is hurting just to walk right now.

Christmas morning was spent at my daughter Jennifer's house.   Her husband and 2 children were there as well as son Scott, his girlfriend, and extended family members.  We did the traditional present opening followed by big breakfast.  Only one other Christmas, when Steve was deployed during Desert Storm, were we not all together.  This Christmas was hard not having him with us.


Me (Fran), my son Scott, and Girlfriend Alanna.
Scott has just received his shirt for the Disney Princess Half Marathon

Baby Cole's 1st Christmas - healthy now
Nothing quite says Christmas in the South as
getting a new weapon.


December 18, 2011

Weekend in Florida

In my attempt to blog regularly, I will try to post something every few days. 

My mother lives in Florida, outside of Orlando.  She is by herself, without any family nearby.  So, I try to visit her as often as possible.  I flew in Thursday night and will leave tomorrow morning.

While I am here, I try to help her with some errands and shopping.  We were even able to get in an eye doctor appointment while I was here.

The weather was a little cool.  I didn't bring any cold weather clothes with me or my running gloves.  It was 50 degrees this morning when I woke up - I would not have been dressed properly - so, I waited until about 0930 to run.  It was about 54 degrees - but very windy.  But the sun was out so warmed up more as I ran.

My hip is still hurting a little bit - so, I slowed down and walked a little more than planned.  Doctor appointment this week - maybe I might be able to get an X-ray or MRI scheduled so I can see if there is something really wrong - or just wear & tear.

4 week until the Louisiana  Marathon.  I still have an 18 & 20 mile training run.  If something is really wrong - I would hate to aggravate it worse with the long training runs.  So - I will just go a little slower - that's the plan.

December 14, 2011

Crying at the Grocery Store

Grocery shopping should not be a traumatic event.  I just had to pick up a few things - So ran to the Commissary.  But today wasn't one of my better days.

It started near the bakery, when I saw the kind of bread that Steve liked so much. Then in the meat department, I picked out some real good looking boneless pork chops.  Steve liked pork and I couldn't always find nice pork chops to cook - but today there was a big selection.  Then the final straw was when I went in the back and couldn't even go down the pretzel aisle. 

I always made sure that we had plenty of pretzels.  It was Steve's favorite snack.   But, I have plenty of pretzels at my house.  There isn't anyone to eat them.  When my son, Scott, comes over (now only about once a month since he lives in Shreveport) he eats a few.

It was hard enough transitioning from cooking for a family of 5 down to just Steve and I.  Now cooking for only 1 is so hard.  Just something else to get used to.

December 13, 2011

Hip Pain

On Sunday, Lee and I had our 16 mile long run.  Only 33 Days until The Louisiana Marathon in Baton Rouge.  Heidi joined us for about 10 miles.  My right hip just didn't want to stop hurting.  It isn't the kind of pain that will make me stop running - it is just the nagging pain to let me know something is just not quite right.

Well, you can't fix something if you don't know exactly what is wrong.  Do I need to strength train more on the hip?  Well, if something is partially torn or partially broken (tendon, ligament, muscle, or stress fracture), I am worried that certain kinds of training might make it worse.

So, I decided to go to the doctor to see what is wrong.  But.... with the military system, I just can't go see an orthopedic doctor.  No, I have to see an internal medicine doc first who will refer me to an orthopod.  First available appointment is December 21st.  Right after I do my 20 mile run.

In the mean time, Fran's plan is just to take is easy - I am sticking with Runner's World Smart Coach plan - but just might not run quite so fast.

This morning Rosalyn and I ran 5 easy miles and the hip didn't hurt during or after the run.

My plan might work.

December 12, 2011

Happy Anniversary Steve

30 years ago, you and I drove from Fort Lewis, WA to Reno, NV to get married.  You had recently re-enlisted and we used part of your bonus for the trip. The MGM grand was having a special for Active Duty military - $32.00 a night.  So, we took advantage of the low rate.

We drove my Fiat Spider convertable down Interstate 5 for Sacramento then went over the pass to Reno.   When we got into the mountains, it was snowing.  My little convertable wastn't used to cold weather and it was freezing in the car.  Then we got to the pass and had to have snow chains to go any further.  You had anticipated this and bought tire chains before we left Washington.  I remember you laying in the snow putting the chains on.

We had a good time in Reno.  This was the first time that I had ever gambled.  We played craps and won money the first night - then lost it all the next night.

You always used to complain that I spent your re-enlistment bonus when we got married.  I am sorry - I tried to make it up to you and built you a shop.  I hope we ended up even.

Dates and anniversaries never mattered to me much.  It was just a date on the calendar.  I always said - "let's go out on a Friday or Saturday".  It didn't have to be the exact date.  There were years when I even forgot our anniversary.  I always felt so bad when you gave me a gift or card and I forgot the date.  I think that it made you feel a little superior.  You bought me gifts when I told you not to.  And you bought me flowers when I asked you not to.

I have this card from our 20th Anniversary... I bet you would have done something very special for the 30th Anniversary.



Thanks for asking me to marry you.  I miss you so much.  I would really like to take a "marriage enrichment" motorcycle ride with you.  We could go out to dinner and I could try and figure out something to get you as a gift.  Well, maybe in my dreams.

December 8, 2011

The Well Pump Drama

I live in the country and have a well pump.  There is access to "City Water" but Steve and I loved  the taste of the good water that came from the well.  Steve was in charge of keeping the well pump up and running - He did all the maintenance and repairs as needed.

Whenever, he would leave for a few days, I would ask him to check out the well pump and make sure everything was working properly.  It always seemed like when he left - something would break and I would have to call in a repair person.

Just last January, Steve and I were both gone, the weather dropped into the 20's and several pipes burst.  I came home to water everywhere and a screeching noise from the pump.  The repairs were well beyond my capability - So, I was just without water for 2 days until Steve got home.

He would be out in the wet and cold - and never complained.

So....my biggest fear is that the well pump and pipes would break.  I spent several nights insullating the pipes, walls, making sure the heat lamp worked, and whatever else I could to keep thngs working for at least another year.  I even had a service done on the pump itself and changed the air filter.

This morning, I woke up to no water.  I went out in the cold - yes 28 degrees in Louisiana - and found 3 inches of water in the pump house and the pump making a noise like the motor had been running way too long.

I didn't cry - I just figured that this was Steve's way of remindng me how much I needed him.  I really didn't need a reminder.  It probably wasn't even the cold that caused the pipe to break, it just had a small crack that gave way - the water didn't freeze - I guess my insulation worked.

So the wonderful repair man is here - fixing the broke pipe.  Hopefully, this will be my one an only repair job this winter.

Miss you Steve and wish that you were the one doing the repairs.

November 30, 2011

Remembering Steve



I spend a lot of time lately remembering events and things that happened between me and my husband Steve.  I am looking at old picture and videos.  I am just thankful that so many pictures were taken over the years.  A lot I have because my daughter, Jennifer was an avid photographer.  Thank goodness for the digital age!!

Here are just a few that are my favorite.  I will probably post more and more as time goes on.

The earliest picture that I have of Steve (from when I knew him)
This picture was taken near Reno, NV - December 1981.
Steve and I drove to Reno from Fort Lewis, WA to get married.

Steve holding Jenny - 1 day old

Steve with Scott, Chris, and Jenny
and his beloved blue van
The Gibson Family
December 1990
The Gibson Family
May 1991
The day Steve returned from Dessert Storm
Steve with his Dad, Hoot

Steve with Corbin

Steve & Fran
December 2006


Bruce Martin & Steve
Having a good time
VFW - 2008


Steve driving Corbin on his motorcycle.
Taken August 2010
  
Steve loved to walk around while he played the guitar.
He had wireless - and could walk around the clubs socializing.
  Taken August 16, 2011



The last picture taken of Steve.  He was driving Kris (Jennifer's mother-in-law)
up to the hospital.  It was Kris' turn to stay with Cole that night



I will add more picture - and probably make this a page of its own later on.

I love you and miss you Steve.


November 2, 2011

Jazz Half - The Details

I always enjoy running in New Orleans.  The people are fun - usually so many creative costumes.  The food is delicious (yes, I put back the 2 pounds that I lost over the last 2 weeks).  The routes are scenic and very flat.  The weather is usually warm.

Saturday, the weather was cool (51 degrees ) and windy.  I was smart and brought my trash bag which kept me very warm.  I also had threw a pair of running gloves in my suitcase before I left - VERY good idea.  Scott, Victoria and I walked to the start which was only about 1/2 mile from our hotels.  There were several other runners that we knew running - so happened to pick a warm corner to wait for them.

Victoria was ansy and wanted to get to the start - but the wind was blowing - so we just stayed in our little corner until about 5 minutes before the race.  This was a nice size race - about 2000 for the half marathon and about 400 for the 5k.  Victoria and Scott are super fast - so they needed to be up front.  (Victoria ended up running 1:34 and Scott finished in 1:29, Scott ran the 5K in 22:13)

I was very happy finding a warm spot in the middle of many runners.  I took off my trash bag - but was very happy that I had the gloves.  I ended up running with the gloves for about 6 miles until it warmed up a little more.

Garmin was charged - but with buildings and some tight U-turns - it didn't read very accurate.  Here are my splits:

Mile 1:  9:18                                                 Mile 8: 9:22
Mile 2:  8:54                                                 Mile 9: 9:30
Mile 3:  7:50 (I don't think                            Mile 10:9:16
Mile 4:  8:52                                                 Mile 11: 10:11
Mile 5:  9:24                                                 Mile 12:  9:58
Mile 6:  9:14                                                 Mile 13:  10:16
Mile 7:  9:42                                                 .36 - 3:26

Garmin Distance:  13.36

Obviously, the Garmin got off a little at Mile 3 - probably tall buildings or trees.

Overall, very good race.  Afterwards, ate some great food including Gumbo from Mulates and creme' brulee'.  Now it will take me weeks to work off the calories.

October 29, 2011

Trying to go on with life - Jazz Half Marathon recap

I ran the Jazz Half Marathon today.  I have been training for this race as part of a series of 3 half marathons in 3 weeks.  But this one was supposed to be the PR.  The other 2 are being run with 1st timers and would be a regular slow training run for me.  I have been doing everything that I was supposed to - speed workouts, working with the trainer,  and every thing that SmartCoach told me to do.  I ran 2:08 at the Rock N Roll Chicago in August.  I just knew that I had a 2:05 in me - and in my dreams an under 2:00. I just knew that I could do it.

Then my world falls apart.  On October 15th, my husband was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident.  We have been married for 30 years and have 3 grown children, Jennifer - 29, Chris - 27, and Scott - 25. I was married to my best friend.  He was the best father, grandfather, and husband anyone could wish for.  He was a good friend to many people.  Somehow, I am finding the strength to go on.  One of the things that is helping me is my running.  It seems that when I am running, I am focused and don't think of other things.  I find myself talking to my husband, but I don't cry as much.

A little history - Steve and I were both in the Army for 20 years.  Steve had the type of assignments where he ran a lot.  I had mainly hospital assignments - so PT was not always so formal.  Steve did a lot of running and his knees were sore.  I saved my running for my 40's and 50's.  Steve did not really enjoy going with me to runs.  But he saw me run my 1st half marathon, my first marathon, my first triathlon(and probably more runs than he could count) .  When I drug him through countless Expos, he would constantly make sarcastic comments.  But, He supported, encouraged, and congratulated me after every accomplishment or achievement.

So today, in chilly windy New Orleans, I lined up to try and run.  I talked to Steve as I ran.  I really think that he was with me.  This was probably his version of hell, because he did not want to run anymore.  I think that Steve stayed with me for about 11 miles, because then my hip flexor and IT band started hurting.  2 friends had caught me at mile 10 - but I just couldn't keep their pace and watched them get further and further away.  I figure that Steve said, "OK, I ran with you far enough - I'm going to take a break".  I did set a PR 2:05:18.  I will just have to work on those 18 seconds.


Me (911) with some very supportive friends - all much faster than I am

Life has to go one.  It will just be a very different life.  I will not have my best friend next to me every day.  I will not have the person who brings me back to the center when I stray too far. I will not have the sounding board that I have had for 30 years.  Our new grandson, Cole, will never know Hootie.

I can just be grateful that I had the good years.

Steve and me after his band played in Sulphur, LA  March 2006

Please read my daughter's beautiful blog dedicated to her father.

Jennifer's Blog about her dad

Jennifer was the good blogger in the family.  I was trying - it just seemed to take so long. It is just healthy to talk about things and not keep them bottled up.  Hope to be more consistent.

October 3, 2011

Exercise - the ultimate stress reliever

Several households in my family and extended family are tired and stressed.  Details on a previous post - but we have a 32 day old grandchild in the hospital.  For a several days, it was very scary and he was very sick.  He is not home yet, but labs look good, and he is acting like a healthy baby should act.

But in the mean time.......having someone in the hospital and trying to continue with normal life activities is hard on everyone.  So far, the only casualty is a broken iPhone.  Eating healthy is almost impossible.  Meals usually consist of take-out that is brought back to the hospital or like the last 2 nights  - Pizza and Mexican.  Scale this morning reported a 1.5 pound increase from Friday.

My next half marathon is the Jazz half marathon and I am trying to get a PR of 2:05.   In my attempt to do the impossible, I am trying to strictly adhere to my running schedule.  Today was not a running day, but I knew that some exercise would help.

So, I set the alarm early - but woke up 15 minutes before the alarm went off (don't you hate that).  I laid in bed for a few minutes - not work falling back asleep.  I tried to sneak out of be without waking my husband (he doesn't get up until 0530) but he must have been awake anyway.  He said, "It's 4 o'clock".  My reply, "yes, I know, I'm going spinning".  He said, "Not, me" and fell back asleep.

Great spinning class.  Monday's class was full of soldiers for their morning PT.  It is what I needed.  If I am lucky, I might have burned off 1 slice of pizza.

Tonight, I am doing the night shift at the hospital so that others can get a good night's sleep.  I will get relieved in time to go do some strength training with my trainer - then go to bed.  It is all worth it!!!

Cole - 32 days old

September 30, 2011

Blog Update

It always amazes me when other bloggers are able to consistently post a daily blog. 

I have been luck to post once a month.... Work, exercising, and life take so much time.  Now our lives are completely crazy.  My daughter's newborn - 30 days today - is in the hospital.  Will be in the hospital for 2-3 weeks.

We are so lucky to have good support from so many places.  Her husband's mother, who just happened to plan a visit to help with the newborn, has been great mainly helping with the 6 year old.  Her husband's army family has been bringing food and offering support.  My co-workers have been helpful and understanding with the time I have taken.

We are only 3 days into a long haul.  Blogs just take a back seat.

September 20, 2011

Pink Dress Run - report

Saturday night Janet and I went to Alexandria and had fun at the Pink Dress Run.  Of course this wasn't a real run, but a fun run for a good cause.  It was a fund raiser for the Alexandria Komen 5K next month.

The event was sponsored by Run Wild and Walker Automotive.  This was the first event of this kind and I felt that it was very well organized.  It reminded me of the Red Dress Run in New Orleans (without the bars, Bourbon street, and beer).

Me and Janet in out pink dresses.
It's all about accessories - with my Hello Kitty purse

I really should have removed my sunglasses




Everyone got in the spirit - some outfits were very creative. 



September 14, 2011

Quality time with Frannie and the Third Offspring

Because it is all about the Bling and that I love running the Rock N Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon, I signed up to run it this year.  My son Scott (aka - the Third Offspring) happened to be off work that weekend - so the plan was for me, Scott, and his girlfriend to go to Virginia Beach.  Scott and I would do the run - girlfriend would take pictures and cheer.

Scott is 25 years old and has run 3 other half marathons with me over the last year.  At each one, about mile 8, he says, "I think that next time I will train".  I register him for a race, then send him gentle Motherly reminders in the form of training schedules and e-mails.  He either forgets to train, has too much other fun stuff to do, or (like childbirth) forgets how painful it was the last time.

Once again, Scott did not train, but he had a goal of beating his last time of 2:52 with 2:45 as the ultimate goal.  That would mean a walk/run pace of about 11:30.  Not an unreasonable pace, but a pace that usually needs training for.

I am so proud of my son.  I told him that we would probably have a run 5 minute / walk 1 minute pace.  During mile 2-3, I was feeling so good - because this was such a comfortable pace for me - I forgot the walk part.  Afterward, Scott says,  "I remember listening to 3 straight songs on my iPod and we ran through all of them - we never walked!!"

I kept checking my watch and was very happy with our pace.  At mile 7, I was confident that we would beat 2:45.  Then mile 8 hit, and Scott's legs were talking to him.

We did a lot more walking then running for the last 3 miles.  At mile 11, I started running and Scott said, we aren't going to make the time - so let's just walk some more.  We stayed together until we saw the finish line.

During all the half marathons that my son and I have run - we stayed together until the end.  For me, it was more about having the time together.  I just counted them as long slow training runs.  Then the finish line comes within reach - Scott starts to sprint and usually beats me by 0:02 seconds when the official results are released.

At Virginia Beach, the finish line is on the Boardwalk.  It can be seen from about 1 mile away.  Way to far to start sprinting.  We were still doing the Walk/Run on the boardwalk. Then about 100 yards away, Scott picks up the pace.  This guy hasn't been able to run for the last 2 miles - but he is running like he is running towards home plate with someone trying to throw him out.  The end of the run was very congested and I could quite run next to him - he found a way to probably beat me by at least 2 seconds this time.

But unfortunately for him, when the results came out - our times were exactly the same - 2:58:45.  The finish line photograph even shows him beating me by a few feet.  Scott thinks that I should write in and have the times corrected.

Next family run is the Disney's Princess Half Marathon in February 2012.


Fran and Scott at the 5K point of the Half Marathon

Scott - clearly beating Fran by more than a second!!
All done!!  Deciding which run to do next.....

September 6, 2011

More important than a Half Marathon??

You ask yourself - what could be more important that posting my report of the this weekend's Virginia Beach Rock n Roll Half Marathon?

Just for a little background.  We had big plans to all run the Army Ten Miler as a family in October.  Then, my daughter Jennifer became pregnant - The original due date was September 21.  Didn't think that it was such a good idea to plan a run with a 3 week old baby (if it arrived on time).

Fast forward a few months - Jennifer's due date kept changing - she became so big - latest ultra sound had her due date as September 2nd.  OH NO - my husband was going to be out of town Labor Day weekend and I was running Virginia Beach with one of my sons Scott on September 4th.  I just told her to wait until I got back.

Well, babies have a way of doing what they want.  But everything works out for the best.

We welcomed Cole very quickly on September 1st.  He made a dramatic entrance and raised a few blood pressures. 

Welcome Cole - Frannie is ready to spoil you also!!


10 Minutes old - heading to the nursery


Big Brother Corbin - holding Cole


Cole looking very alert - 5 days old

August 29, 2011

Bike Ride as Cross Training

I am going to put forth a good effort to blog on a regular basis - not promising daily blogs, but at least several times a week.

Through Facebook, I met Lisa Ford, who is a member of a bike group out of Lake Charles.  She invited me to join their group.  They usually ride on Saturday morning and one day during the week.  The group starts at Sam Houston State Park just outside of Lake Charles - which is 77 miles from my house. 

So Saturday morning, I left my house at 0445 to meet the group by 0620.  Some members meet at McDonald's.  I followed them into park. 




After the regular routine of getting dressed, shoes on, tires pumped, and quick bathroom break - we were off.

Since this was my first time - I was more than happy to stay near the middle or back of the pack and draft off of the other riders.  Depending on the road and the traffice, riders spread out a little further.  We rode 22 miles to DeQuincy, LA and stopped at the Burger King for breakfast.  What a great way to sabbotage all that healthy exercies - one Burger King Breakfast Bowl with 540 Calories and 42g of Fat.  Oh well....



We then headed back a "shorter" 20 mile route.

What a great day and a great time.  I am hoping to be able to fit this in at least once a month

July 15, 2011

Coming Soon

I have taken on the project of starting a Half Marathon training group.  I sent out information on Facebook, flyers at work, and flyers at local gyms.  So far I have nearly 25 people who are interested.  Some are experienced runners and some are new to running long distance.  We will begin training the first week in August.  There are 3 half marathons to choose from in October and November.  These half marathons are:

Saturday, October 29, 2011
New Orleans Jazz Half Marathon

Sunday, November 13, 2011
San Antonio Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon

Sunday, November 20, 2011
Run Wild's The Half Marathon and 10K of Central Louisiana

Keep posted for more information

June 3, 2011

Current Books

I read alot - but my husband has to remind me that I don't read, but LISTEN to book.  I really got interested in Audio books when I was transferred to San Antonio and Steve stayed in Louisiana with the kids.  I traveled back and forth at least twice a month.  14 hours in the car is a long time looking for radio stations.  I would go to the Library and pick up about 4 books on tape - then listen as I drove.  Time just flew by.

I also used to read a lot lying in bed at night - but something happened and now all I want to do is sleep - I usually wake up after I have drifted off to sleep and the book is hitting me in the face.  I did get a Kindle - dissapointed that it didn't have a back light (I so want the Ipad - but just can't seem to spend the money).




I am listening to the Help - great book.  I did not even know
 that it was going to be made into a movie - Saw the preview
 when we watch Bridesmaids last weekend.
  The movie looks as good as the book.

 I am reading this on my Kindle.  Works great at the pool in the sun.
  (I know the Ipad probably can't do that).  I like Kristin Armstrong's
 group of running friends.  Such Passion about running, friends, and her kids.


One last training run in Louisiana before Grandma's Marathon on Sunday.  Several friends have promised to come out and each run a few miles with me.  Sure will make the 12 go a little faster..  I am working on my costume.  My husband said, "You're going to run in that?"  This will be my first running costume.  I usually don't like things shaking or bumping against me for 26 miles.  Costume may go by the wayside very quickly.


May 22, 2011

Last LONG run

Today was the scheduled last long run before Grandma's Marathon.  My training program is a little off course from my RW Smart Coach plan because of the 5k's 10K's and triathlons that I threw in the mix.  So today was my 18 mile long --- slow  --- run.

I had gotten promises from several friends that they would come out and run a few miles with me to help me get through this run.  Thank goodness for Katie - she was the only friend who showed up.  She was there at 0630 and ran the first 6 with me.  I always run a bit faster when someone is running with me - the competitive spirit kicks in.  But I forced myself to slow down - walk the curves of Honor Field.  We finished 6 in 1:10.

I was sure that someone would eventually show and run 2-3 miles at a time - but there must have been parish wide electrical problems. No one's alarm clocks went off and everyone over slept.

Still, running the last 12 by myself wasn't too bad.  About mile 15, it started to get warm. I began thinking that I should have started at least a half hour earlier.  At least there was a breeze. I finished the 18 miles in under 4 hours - even did more than 18 including 2 walks to the porta-potty and the fact that Honor Field is actually about .01 longer than a mile.  It starts adding up with so many laps.




Mileage Recap:
1:  11:36                      10: 10:51
2:  11:32                      11: 11:12
3:  12:07                      12: 11:20
4:  11:38                      13: 14:28 (BR)
5:  11:40                      14: 15:08 (walk break)
6:  11:46                      15: 11:41
7:  12:36                      16: 11:16
8:  14:42  (BR break)   17: 11:39
9:  11:15                      18: 11:43




As usual - my treat after the really long runs - Whopper Jr with cheese (of course - minus ketchup and mayo - saving a few calories)

Next week is the Combat Triathlon in Texas City.  Just a little competitive cross training.

I will post again after the triathlon.

May 19, 2011

Speed Workout

Today my Runner's World Smart Coach called for a 6 mile speed work out.  1 mile warm-up, 4 X 1600 @ 10:02, then 1 mile cool down.  I have such a hard time gauging the speed that I run.  I think that I am doing great - I'll look down at my Garmin at I'm running a 12:00 minute mile or the opposite - I feel like I am plugging along - I'll look and I going 9:15.

So, I have been doing all my Speed and Tempo runs on the treadmill at the gym early in the morning.  This has been my Thursday routine for the past year.  I faithfully did all the workouts before the Rock N Roll Mardi Gras Marathon - I was sure that I would break 5:00.  Then got stomach cramps and made 2 porta potty stops during the last 6 miles.

So, now for Grandma's Marathon - I have done nearly every Speed and Tempo Run.  This morning felt realy good.  I can't select 10:02 - so I ran all the miles at 10:00.  My heart rate did get up into the high 160's periodically - but I burned 600 calories!!

This afternoon, will be a little swimming.  If I can get to the pool before the kids are out of school, I might be able to practice swimming in different lanes like the Triathlon will be (in 8 days).

May 10, 2011

Brick Workout

I am getting back on track.  My marathon schedule called for a 2 mile easy run today.  What a great opportunity to get in a brick workout and bike a little also.  The plan was to spend about 20 minutes on the bike then run the 2 mile loop around the Golf course.  I actually got to the gym at 4:55 and ended up riding for over 25 minutes (200 calories burned).  It was a beautiful morning to run - still dark - but enough light on the golf course that I won't trip over a pine cone and break my ankle.

Combat Triathlon is only 18 days away.  Trying to stay focused on the Marathon plan.  Tempo run on Thursday and long 16 mile run on Sunday.

May 7, 2011

2011 RocketChix Triathlon 1 - May 1, 2011

This may be a week late - but need to catch up the blog.  I also need to document reasons why I am so far behind in my Grandma's Marathon training.  I just love the RocketChix triathlon.  The  participants are so diverse in their athletic abilities.  I like to see the women who just glide through the water making flip turns and are off on their bike before I even enter the water.  There are many 1st timers in the race.  My goal is always just to finish.  My swimming is getting better - but I still spend the majority of the time doing the breast stroke.

Katie, who works at the same hospital that I do, entered the race with me.  She is a much better swimmer than I am.  She did great and beat me by 3 minutes.  Because of the high Mississippi River - the Bike course had to be shortened.  Overall, a great day, and a great race.
Getting ready to swim
Finishing the bike portion

Katie just so excited to start her run


Finishing the run

Fran and Katie - all finished
 Great way to start the day.  Thanks to my daughter, Jennifer, and her friend Brandy who came to chear us on and take pictures.

May 5, 2011

RocketChix Triathlon - Baton Rouge - May 1, 2011

Stay tuned - As soon as I get the pictures that Jennifer took during the race.  I will post a blog of Katy and I doing the Rocket Chix Triathlon.

April 27, 2011

Deviation from training schedule

I was completely on track with my Runner's World Smart Coach training program for Grandma's Marathon.  Then my plan went crazy because I wanted to run some local (and fun races).  I ran the Red River Run (tried to break 1 hour - but came up 10 seconds short). I ran a the Gary Brewer Memorial 5k in Deridder (goal to break 30 minutes).  I ran the Anacoco Tailtwisting 10k (PR of 58:52).  I ran the Crescent City Classic (just a fun run with costumes and drinking Jello shots).  This coming weekend is the Rocketchix Triathlon in Baton Rouge.  Then next week is the annual Armadillo Stamped (5k).

So of course, to get ready for the triathlon, I had to throw in some swimming and biking.  I have to work some also - there are only so many hours in the day - so the long runs have suffered.

I put in my information into the Smart Coach calculator.  The disclaimer that came back warned against running a marathon with so little preparation.  I am planning of splitting my long runs for the next 2 weekends.  I will run the triathlon - then later in the day complete the long distance miles.

This is probably a stupid plan - but it is the only one that I have.  As long as I obey the 10% rule and don't increase my mileage too much - I should keep from getting injured.

April 23, 2011

The Blog Begins - Crescent City Classic

 Well here starts Frannie's world of blogging....Today I ran the Crescent City Classic in New Orleans. 

Polly woke up early and wished me a good race.  She was supposed to watch from the corner of Toulouse and Rampart as I ran by - but I must have missed the corner.  Before I knew it I was turning the corner at Esplanade.

Sea of people ahead of me

This is not the race to expect a PR (unless you are one of the seeded runners with a number less than 100).  The announced number of participants was over 21,500.  My number was in the 11,000's but there were probably at least 10,000 walkers who started ahead of me. I spent the first 2 miles zig zagging around strollers and walkers - many of whom walked 6-7 people across. 



This is the race for people to dress up in costumes and have a good time.  There were many people in bunny ears, super hero costumes, and just about anything that you can think of.  My favorite group was a group wearing Black with bunny ears and fuzzy tails.  They carried a wagon with a huge boom box.  They also had several other wagons with what I thought was water.  I hung with this group for a while because they were so large - they plowed their way through the walkers.

Bunny people with support wagons
I stopped to call Pollie and let her know that I missed her.  When I caught up to the bunny group - they had stopped.  I found out that the support wagons were full of Jello shots and the bunnies were handing them out to the runners. 


Bunnies hand Jello shots to the runners at 2011 Crescent City Classic

The temperature at the start of the race was at least 80 degrees and humidity was typical New Orleans.  So I just treated this like a Sunday slow run.  Even though - it was shorter than I should be doing to prepare for Grandma's Marathon  - which is 56 days from now.

So to recap - my slow Sunday Saturday run in New Orleans:

Mile 1:  12:37 - strollers & walker issues
Mile 2:  12:12 - they are thinning out
Mile 3:  13:00 - stopped to call Polly and take pictures of Bunnies
Mile 4:  10:32 - the walkers are starting to thin out
Mile 5:  10:14 - still crowded
Mile 6:  10:07 - I am feeling good - but there are still strollers - these people started with the Kenyans!

Final time was 1:10:42 - too fast for a slow run and too slow for a 10K - just having fun

I am running with new Brooks Ghost 3's and my feet feel good.

Now - just relaxing in the room - catching up on a Baby Blanket - will head back home tomorrow morning and hope to get a Swim - Bike workout in with Katie.  Rocket Chix triathlon is next Sunday.

Hope that I get a chance to do a mid week blog - may need Jennifer's help with some things.  I am sure she will critique this blog - and give a daughter's constructive criticism.