December 10, 2011

Catching Up

1. GRE
On Tuesday I finally conquered the last big hurdle in the grad school application process: the GRE. For those of you who haven't had the pleasure of taking this exam, it's basically a harder version of the SAT with verbal, math, and essay sections. This thing was seriously stressing me out over the last month so I'm glad to have it out of the way. I got the results back immediately for the multiple choice sections and while I didn't kill it, I did pretty average as I expected. I just keep reminding myself that there are a lot of other factors that the schools consider besides test scores. Either way, it's done, so yay!

2. CIM & 16 Miles
This past Sunday I had 16 miles on deck so I planned my route around the California International Marathon course. The race actually runs just a couple miles from my house so I did an out-and-back on the bike trail and made it to the J St. bridge just in time to catch the lead runners going by. It was pretty exciting, those guys were flyyyying!
 American lead (went on to place 2nd!)

I did another short out-and-back and by the time I got back to the bridge the pace group of women gunning for a Olympic trial qualifying time of 2:46 were passing. 25 went on to finish under the standard and will be headed to Houston in January for the trials (I'll be there, too!).  After that I hopped onto the course (on the sidewalk, not in the thick of things) and ran down J St. spectating as I went. It was actually kind of funny, because of the timing I was running along all the sub-3 hour folks. And there were a lot of them! Seriously impressive and inspiring. I got to the mile 25 aid station sponsored by my work and took a short break to do some cheering. With just a mile left to go I headed to work. I would've preferred the finish line to work but such is life!
Olympic trials hopefuls
 J st. bridge
 Sutter's Fort
 1 to go! (for them and me)
 Fleet Feet Sac aid station
home stretch
The run itself actually went really well though and was a huge confidence boost. My plan was to actually start off slow, like 9:30s, and just keep it easy. I have a habit of doing my long runs way too fast (like, practically race pace) so I wanted to try something different. Interestingly enough, after a few miles my pace naturally dropped to 9:10-9:15s for the rest of the run with no apparent change in effort. That's a win in my book! Also has me reconsidering my goals for Houston...

3. Winter Conditioning
I don't start official Ironman training with my coach til January but in the meantime I'm taking part in her winter conditioning classes twice a week. They are mostly circuit-type workouts designed for triathletes specifically that build in intensity from week to week. So far I've really enjoyed them and will be incorporating them through February. The only downside is the time. They start at 6am - it's actually still dark when we finish! I am not a morning person, but I know I need to get used to it for Ironman training. Yikes!

4. 100 Push-Ups Challenge
So I made it halfway, through week 3, and was doing nearly 70 push-ups in one workout. And then this week happened and push-ups didn't. Between the GRE and my winter conditioning classes (which include push-ups), I just didn't want to do them. Plus, they were getting really hard. I'm not giving up; I'll probably just repeat week 3 and go from there. And if that doesn't happen, I'd like to at least continue to incorporate push-ups into my routine because they really are effective and easy to do in 5-10 minutes.


  1. I have almost the same photo of the parking garage with the metal artwork on the side from a work trip to Sac a little while back - yours with the runners in it as well is much cooler!
    Congrats on getting the GRE out of the way, and hope that the essay questions come back well too.

  2. Congrats on getting the GRE done. It's on my to-do list now and I am starting to stress. I don't remember any of this stuff! I bought a GRE book and everything just seems so distant and foreign. Sheesh. Glad you survived it! How long did you study in preparation?