Bayshore Marathon – I did it!

24 May

I’ll have a full race recap sometime this week, but for now, I’ll share a few photos!






I ran a really good, consistent, smart race. I battled excruciating hip pain after Mile 21, but I walked as needed and ran as much as possible that last 5 miles. I finished in 5:06:18 — a more than 25-minute PR from 3 years ago.

I could not be more proud of my accomplishment.

Mindy ran a really good race, too, and crossed the finish line like a boss. And Andi struggled but finished – with Mindy and I holding her hands and her stepdaughters in tow. It was a sight to behold.

We left everything on the course, to be carried off into the crystal blue waters of the bay.

Stay tuned for more!

Bayshore Marathon training – Week 17

19 May

Marathon Week is finally here! I can hardly believe it!

Eighteen-plus weeks of training. Hundreds of miles run. Hours of yoga and cross-training logged.

I am ready. I have to be ready.

Here’s how last week shaped up:

  • Monday: Yoga 2.45-mile walk, 41:51/17:05 pace. Completed late afternoon, about 4:30 p.m.

The weather was beautiful, so I opted for a walk, rather than yoga.

Bonus: Mowing the lawn — 40 min.

  • Tuesday: 4-mile run — 4.08 miles, 38:22/9:25 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

Again, the weather was beautiful, so I tested out my new playlist and ran in our neighborhood.

Bonus: 1.33 miles walking (to the store and back home) — 23:13/17:25 pace; 1.29 miles walking (around the park) — 22:51/17:40 pace

  • Wednesday: Zumba elliptical trainer — 20 min. + Zumba video — 20 min.

I actually made it to the gym and got the girls into child care, but Zumba was canceled, so I hopped on the elliptical machine. I didn’t have on my usual running or cross-training shoes, and I didn’t have my headphones, so I kept my workout short for the afternoon and did a Zumba video from YouTube after the girls were asleep for the night.

  • Thursday: 6-mile run – 6.24 miles, 1:03:50/10:13 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

This run was a bit tough. I felt slow and sluggish. But I pressed on. RunKeeper alerted me that my pace hovered around 10:00 per mile, and it reminded me that it does, in fact, feel slower than 9:00 per mile. I would like to run about 10:00 (or a wee bit slower) miles for the marathon, so I needed to be very conscious of how that feels and remember it come Saturday.

  • Friday: Body Pump — 45 min.

I made my return to Body Pump, because I only had 8 miles on the docket the next day. We are on yet another new release, which means the burning lunge track of weeks prior is gone, but another has taken its place. We did squats and lunges, but instead of the back track, we did the biceps and triceps track, which was such a nice addition to the class.

  • Saturday: 8-mile run – 7.92 miles, 1:24:02/10:26 pace. Completed in the morning, about 9:45 a.m.

Oh my goodness. This run was very, very humid, and thus, very, very tough for this asthmatic. It had rained much of the day and night before, then warmed up in the early morning, so the air was wet and thick and the environment was just sticky.

We ran on the local trails, which go through areas dense with trees and foliage, where the humidity just lingers in the air. We popped out and finished up across the dam and then back through our neighborhood, which is much more open, where the breeze could pass through.

For the conditions, our splits were pretty good: 9:41, 10:37, 10:25, 10:40, 10:40, 11:34 (walk break), 10:40.

  • Sunday: rest

On the docket for this week:

  • Yesterday – 3-mile run — 3.1 miles, 31:25/10:07 pace. Completed in the afternoon, about 2:30 p.m., with the girls in the stroller.

We had to take both vehicles in for oil changes over naptime, so I opted to run with the girls in the stroller, after they got up from their nap.

Talk about a workout! The wind was gusting pretty significantly. Plus, the girls combined weigh more than 40 pounds, and the stroller weighs another 20-ish pounds. I forgot just how tough it is to push the jogging stroller and run at the same time. I got my money’s worth for this one.

  • Tuesday – yoga
  • Wednesday – 4-mile run
  • Thursday – rest
  • Friday – rest

Bayshore Marathon training – Week 16

12 May

Oh, the taper… It feels so good to run just 10 miles, but it feels so wrong at the same time — like, I ran 20 miles in Week 15, and I’m expected to bust out 6 more in Week 18? Like, shouldn’t I have to run more than a 10-miler and an 8-miler in between that time?

  • Monday: Yoga — 40 min.

After my 20-miler Saturday, I did the yoga for runners video, hoping to continue to stretch out my weary running muscles and build strength for the very long run ahead in just a couple of weeks.

  • Tuesday: 5-mile run — 48:07/9:37 pace. Treadmill. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

It was cooler and windier than it has been lately, so I opted for the treadmill and did an increasing-speed interval run. I accidentally left my phone at home, though, so I ran without music. Ouch.

Bonus: Mowing the lawn — 40 min.

  • Wednesday: Zumba walk — 3.1 miles, 48:12/15:33 pace. Completed late afternoon, about 4:30 p.m., with the girls in the stroller.

I had every intention of going to Zumba, but Anna and Elise did not want to leave my arms (Anna) or my side (Elise) at gym childcare; I was so frustrated with trying to get them to play and fending off little girls who promised to “take care of (my) babies for (me)” that I left. We went for a brisk walk instead.

  • Thursday: 8-mile run – 7.86 miles, 1:22:43/10:32 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

It was hot (83 degrees) and windy (25 mph gusts), but I set out for 8 miles and tried to take it easy.

  • Friday: rest

Rest day, best day!

  • Saturday: 10-mile run – 9.89 miles, 1:39:57, 10:07 pace. Completed in the morning, starting at 9 a.m.

We had big plans for the day: a 10-mile run, followed by a trip to the Brookfield Zoo outside Chicago. So we got after it.

Christopher, the girls, and Dexter joined me for the first 6.5-ish miles on the local trails. Dexter was pretty worn out by Mile 4, so my crew went home. I did the last 3.5-ish miles around our neighborhood. I accidentally stopped my RunKeeper app early, otherwise I would have hit 10 miles.

I didn’t bring any Honey Stingers or Gatorade, even though I probably should have had at least some Gatorade. I was thirsty and felt a bit sluggish.

My splits are nice and steady, though:

Miles 1-3: 9:18, 9:55, 9:37

Mile 4: 11:41 (walk break + Christopher stopped with the stroller)

Miles 5-7: 10:16, 10:20, 10:01

Miles 8-10: 9:33 (woot!), 10:20, 10:02

  • Sunday: rest

On the docket for this week:

  • Yesterday – yoga mowing the lawn, walking
  • Tuesday – 4-mile run
  • Wednesday – Zumba
  • Thursday – 6-mile run
  • Friday – Body Pump
  • Saturday – 8-mile run
  • Sunday – rest

Bayshore Marathon training – Week 15

3 May

There are just 2 (full) weeks of training left. And there are just 3 weeks until the marathon. Gulp.

  • Monday: Yoga rest


  • Tuesday: 5-mile run — 5.49 miles, 53:21/9:43 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

I don’t remember much about this run, except that I felt good, less than 36 hours removed from my 18-miler.

  • Wednesday: Zumba walk — 3.11 miles, 49:37/15:57 pace. Completed late afternoon, about 3:15 p.m., with the girls in the stroller.

I skipped Zumba in favor of a long-ish walk with the girls, so I tried to make haste to get the most out of it.


  • Thursday: 10-mile run – 3.5 miles, 32:25/9:16 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:45 p.m.

I felt so horrible — headache, sinus congestion, chest congestion, cough, generally out of it — but I knew at least a few miles were in order. The first quarter mile was like an out-of-body experience; my legs felt wobbly and my head felt fuzzy. The rest of the run was just difficult.

  • Friday: rest

Rest day, best day!

  • Saturday: 20-mile run – 20.02 miles, 3:36:52, 10:50 pace. Completed in the morning, starting at 7 a.m.

I am so incredibly proud of this run!

I set out at 7 a.m. and did 12.5 miles by myself. I stopped at Mile 5 for some fuel, then again about Mile 8 (the turnaround) to walk and text Christopher, then at Mile 10 for some more fuel.

Miles 1-4: 9:28, 9:40, 10:02, 10:14

Miles 5-8: 10:10, 11:21, 9:55, 9:39

Miles 9-12: 11:31, 9:36, 11:47, 10:50

It’s 9:30, and @kaylabee0418 has already run half a marathon. #OurHero #TheBestIsYetToCome

A photo posted by Christopher Heimerman (@cheimerman) on May 2, 2015 at 7:38am PDT

I arrived back home about 9 a.m. and had some Jell-O and Gatorade and stretched my legs. Christopher and I loaded up the girls and headed out for 7.5 miles together. We stopped at Mile 15 for some fuel, then again at Mile 18 and Mile 19 for a break and to summon the energy for the last mile. Miles 13-16: 9:44, 10:00, 10:31, 12:09 Miles 17-20: 11:44, 13:09, 12:16, 12:54 I forgot to take my inhaler, but I miraculously did not at all struggle with my breath. I started out “slower” than usual, at closer to 10:00 pace, which I think benefited me later (e.g. Miles 10, 13 and 14). I tried really hard to space out my breaks (every 5 miles) and run as much and as steadily as possible in between the breaks, I think that also benefited me later; it was really difficult to keep running Miles 16-18, but it made the break at Miles 18 and 19 so much more worth it. This was just an amazing training run — and a personal (training) distance record. It might still be 6.2 miles shy of the marathon distance, but it has completely instilled in me the confidence to not only finish Marathon No.  2, but finish it with an insane PR.


All hail the Queen of Pain. @kaylabee0418 just crushed 20 miles. #ShesReady #Supermom


A photo posted by Christopher Heimerman (@cheimerman) on May 2, 2015 at 9:01am PDT

  • Sunday: rest

On the docket for this week, which marks the start of the taper:

  • Today – yoga
  • Tuesday – 5-mile run
  • Wednesday – Zumba
  • Thursday – 8-mile run
  • Friday – Body Pump
  • Saturday – 10-mile run
  • Sunday – rest

Bayshore Marathon training — Weeks 13 and 14

27 Apr

Sorry for the hiatus! My laptop crashed; I recovered all of my files, but I have not been able to download and install Windows Live Writer.

I was sick and skipped most of my runs in Week 13, and I still wasn’t back to 100 percent but I got in all of my workouts for Week 14, including my 18-miler.

Here’s how it broke down:

  • Monday, April 13: yoga rest
  • Tuesday, April 14: 4-mile run — 4. miles, TIME/PACE. Completed mid-morning, with Christopher pushing the stroller and me with the dog.

I stayed home from work because my head was so fuzzy, that I feared working at the computer all morning might only make it worse. I opted for a run (adrenaline is a natural decongestant), though, and I slogged through it.

  • Wednesday, April 15: Zumba mowing the lawn — 45 min.
  • Thursday, April 16: rest gardening — 60 min.
  • Friday, April 17: rest
  • Saturday, April 18: 18-mile run — 13.6 miles, 2:25:37/10:42 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:45 p.m.

I was slated to mark my 30th birthday with an 18-mile run, but I was miserable, and the weather was less than perfect (cool and windy, again).

Christopher tackled the full distance with me, and we went even a bit farther than we planned because my RunKeeper app locked up and had to be restarted, so we were turning around based on time, rather than an accurate distance.

This run was nothing short of discouraging. My time (average pace) suggests it wasn’t too bad, but my body said otherwise. I coughed and wheezed. I blew snot rockets and spit wads to clear my nasal passages and throat. My arms were freezing. My feet hurt. My legs ached.

I wanted nothing more than to run 18 miles and be an absolute rock star on my big birthday, but I felt so exhausted, mentally, physically, and emotionally. I still managed about a half marathon, though. I tried to remind myself that that was an accomplishment, given the circumstances.

  • Sunday, April 19: rest
  • Monday: yoga — 40 min.

I returned to the yoga for runners video, and I was so glad to stretch out my running-weary muscles.


  • Tuesday: 5-mile run — 49:08/9:50 pace. Completed on the treadmill while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

Gale-force winds forced me indoors to the treadmill. I did an increasing-speed interval workout, with a mile warm-up and a mile cool-down. I felt so proud of myself for getting the lead out after a crummy week.

  • Wednesday: Zumba — 45 min. Class at the Y.

I returned again to Zumba at the gym, and I was so glad for the fun, sweaty class.

  • Thursday: 9-mile run mowing the lawn — 60 min.


  • Friday: rest 9-mile run — 9.16 miles, 1:33:10/10:11 pace. Completed in the afternoon, first alone, then with Christopher, the girls, and Dexter.

I went out way too fast and paid for it with side stitches and labored breathing. I settled into a more comfortable pace, and I took a few walk breaks. My splits: 8:21, 9:31, 9:50, 11:03, and 11:04.

Christopher and the girls joined me for the last 4 miles, and we fought off Friday-afternoon school traffic, while managing to maintain a good clip; we took one walk break. Our splits: 9:47, 10:07, 11:39, and 10:26.


  • Saturday: 12-mile run 18-mile run — 18.05 miles, 3:18:49/11:01 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:15 p.m.

I set out to run at least 12 miles, probably 15 miles, but hopefully 18 miles. The weather was nice — breezy, but sunny and in the mid- to upper 50s — and Mucinex had mostly knocked out my cough and chest congestion, so I was feeling better.

I ran the first 12.5 miles by myself, then Christopher pushed the girls in the stroller, and I took Dexter (until he pulled too much on the downhills for my aching knees to keep up) for the last 5.5 miles. I did that first leg entirely on the local trails, running from the north end of Sterling to the southeastern edge of Sterling, then across the Rock River to the south end of Rock Falls.

I ate a few Honey Stingers around Mile 4, then again around Mile 7, Mile 9 and Mile 11. I sipped Gatorade as needed.

Miles 1-4: 9:15, 9:27, 9:49, 11:03

Miles 5-8: 9:45, 9:59, 10:46, 9:53

Miles 9-12: 11:31, 10:59, 11:59, 11:35

The girls still were asleep when I got home, so I took some time to stretch, drink water and have a Jell-O cup. They stirred, and I headed back out. Christopher and the girls caught up with me around Mile 2.

We did the second leg on the local trails, which was quite a challenge, given we were tackling some monster hills in the double-digit miles of my run.

Miles 13-15: 11:16, 11:27, 11:47

Miles 16-18: 13:40 (walk break), 11:58, 12:09

I cannot believe I actually did it. I recovered with popsicles and the biggest Orange Julius ever. The girls, of course, insisted we play outside the rest of the night, and of course, insisted Mama push them around in their wagons. My burnin’ legs!

This run went a long way in boosting my confidence, dispelling my doubts and generally just easing my mind about the marathon, which now is just 4 weeks away!

  • Sunday: rest

On the docket for this week:

  • Today – yoga
  • Tuesday – 5-mile run
  • Wednesday – Zumba
  • Thursday – 10-mile run
  • Friday – rest
  • Saturday – 20-mile run
  • Sunday – rest

Bayshore Marathon training – Week 12

13 Apr

Twelve weeks down, six weeks to go. How is that even possible?! It’s getting so close.


  • Monday: 4-mile run – 4.09 miles, 41:29/10:09 pace. Completed mid-morning, about 10 a.m., with Christopher pushing the stroller and me with the dog.

I barely remember this run, except that it felt much harder than it should have…IMG_20150407_204743

  • Tuesday: Yoga – 35 min.

It felt so good to stretch out my body after a 16-mile run Saturday, a 5K walk Sunday, and a 4-mile run Monday. I did the Jillian Michaels Yoga Meltdown routine, and I focused on doing the poses well and with purpose.

  • Wednesday: Zumba – 45 min. Class at the Y.

I missed Zumba! After 2 weeks away, it felt awesome to shake it out and get my sweat on in a group-exercise setting.


  • Thursday: 8-mile run – 1:16:39, 9:35 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

I hardly remember this run, either, except that, at first, I felt too cold, then later, I felt too hot, and that I struggled a bit with my breathing given the humidity, thanks to on-and-off rain and the threat of thunderstorms.

My splits show a very erratic first few miles: 7:52, 9:03, and 8:34, then a more typical several miles: 10:05, 9:56, 10:27, 10:52, 9:46. My RunKeeper map reminds me also that I stopped at exactly 8 miles and walked the last quarter-mile home.

I do remember, however, feeling totally spent and battling major gastrointestinal unrest the rest of the night.

  • Friday: rest

Rest day, best day!


  • Saturday: 12-mile run – 12.11 miles, 1:59:18, 9:51 pace. Completed in the morning, about 9:15 a.m.

After an inauspicious start, this run marked another solid long run for this training cycle.

It was more windy than predicted, so I started out chilled in short sleeves. It warmed up as the sun came out from behind the clouds, although the wind never died down, so I felt comfortable.

I struggled a bit with my breathing, but more so with my sinuses, nasal passages, and throat; I just could not manage to clear them, no matter how many times I blew snot rockets or coughed. I felt a little better, more opened up, after about 7 miles.

Christopher pushed the girls in the stroller, while I ran with Dexter for the first 6.5 miles, then I ran alone for the last 5.5 miles. We took zero walk breaks in that first leg, but I took a few to sip on some Gatorade during the second leg.

My splits reveal a very, very consistent run:

Miles 1-4: 9:21, 9:41, 9:48. 9:49

Miles 5-8: 9:54, 10:03, 9:30, 10:11

Miles 9-12: 9:53, 10:04, 10:35, 9:53

Nothing much more to report; just another 12 quality miles.


  • Sunday: rest

Bonus: 3.12-mile walk, 51:23/16:28 pace. Completed with the girls in the stroller and Dexter on the leash, about 4:30 p.m.

On the docket for this week:

  • Today – yoga rest (under the weather)
  • Tuesday – 4-mile run
  • Wednesday – Zumba
  • Thursday – 9-mile run
  • Friday – rest
  • Saturday – 18-mile run
  • Sunday – rest

Bayshore Marathon – Week 11

7 Apr

I’m a couple days late to the posting game, but I ran a killer 16-miler after another solid week of training. Check it out!

  • Monday: Yoga – 55 min. Completed after the girls were asleep.

I went back to Bob Harper’s Yoga for the Warrior, and I felt really good, really strong, except I almost face-planted during bird of paradise and could not fully push myself into wheel.


  • Tuesday: 4-mile run – 4.13 miles, 38:46/9:24 pace. Completed before work, about 6 a.m.

This was a pretty speedy, albeit pretty hard run. It was the first early-morning run in a while, so as much as I hated being aboard the strugglebus, I loved seeing the sun come up.


  • Wednesday: Zumba 3.4-mile walk – 1:15:38, 22:14 pace. Completed late afternoon with the girls in the stroller.

I skipped dancing in favor of some walking through the park in the sunny (although windy), near-80-degree weather. I also broke in my new running shoes.

  • Thursday: 8-mile run – 8.02 miles, 1:19:39, 9:56 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:30 p.m.

I maintained a good pace throughout, although I really struggled with side stitches and labored breathing early on. It had rained in the early-morning hours, so it was mild and humid by the afternoon. I walked briefly several times in the second half of the run to get my breathing under control, and still managed to maintain an under-10:00-per-mile pace – better than last week with the breathing troubles and an additional mile.

  • Friday: rest

Ahh. Sweet, glorious rest day!


  • Saturday: 16-mile run – 16.21 miles, 2:48:36, 10:24 pace. Completed while the girls took their afternoon nap, about 12:45 p.m.

I’ve only trained for one other marathon, so I’ve only run longer than 13 miles a handful of times, but I’m calling this run one of my best long runs ever.

I felt so dang comfortable for the vast majority of the run. I felt confident, strong, fast even. I felt happy, proud.

I ran almost 11.5 miles by myself, then ran another 4.5 miles with Christopher, who pushed the girls in the stroller.

For the first leg, I ran all of the local trails – south from home to the trail, then east through Sinnissippi Park and Hoover Park and back, then west past the Dillon Home, across the Sinnissippi Dam and along the Hennepin Canal almost to the city limits of Rock Falls. It’s such a challenging route because of the terrain; there are some significant hills in Sinnissippi Park, and there is some rough, uneven pavement along the canal. I really feel like the rugged, varied course is good training for me, even though the Bayshore Marathon is a relatively flat and fast course.

For the second leg, we ran the roads in our neighborhood.

My splits tell an interesting story:

Miles 1-5 – 9:09, 9:08, 9:24, 9:46, 9:59 (Slow down, girl!)

Mile 6-10 – 11:01, 9:40, 10:33, 9:33, 10:53

Miles 11-15 – 11:20, 10:39, 10:26, 11:04, 12:44

Mile 16 – 11:37

Basically, I need to train myself to slowtheheckdown during the first 5 miles of my long runs, so I can run a bit faster later and for longer. Sounds easier said than done…

On the docket for this week:

  • Yesterday – 4-mile run
  • Today – yoga
  • Wednesday – Zumba
  • Thursday – 8-mile run
  • Friday – Body Pump?
  • Saturday – 12-mile run
  • Sunday – rest

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 406 other followers