It’s Go Time

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T-minus four days to the Freedom 5K.  I’ve been working hard all summer to set a new personal record at this race, and I’m PUMPED!


For the last 2+ months, I’ve been doing one long run, speedwork run, tempo run, and easy run per week and averaging 18 – 25 miles per week.  I haven’t necessarily met every training goal (speedwork has been the hardest to achieve), but I feel very prepared.  If I can’t run a 23:00 5K on Saturday, I don’t think I ever will!


Having a speed goal while training for the marathon has been very helpful because it’s forced me to focus on more than just distance.  Working on speed has been fun and challenging.  Plus, it helps to mix up my weekly runs… preventing mental burnout is so important in a five-month long training program!


All in all… things are looking up today.  In the very least, I’m determined to have a more positive outlook today than I did yesterday.


Woke out, got some writing done, and snacked on some toast with buttah.


Then I decided to set out on a 5.0 mile run.  Since my race is on Saturday, tomorrow will probably be my last run before the race.  I really want fresh legs!


I set out with one goal:  do a warm-up mile, three fast miles, and one cool-down mile.  Whenever it felt really hard, I thought, “Push through the uncomfortableness.  Push through!”  It helps me so much to frame the discomfort of sprinting in terms of "this is uncomfortable” vs. “this is painful.”  Pain is BAD!  Discomfort is good! (Here’s how I tell the difference between the two).


Along the way, I left four Ripples business cards on the sidewalk, mailboxes, and park benches.  🙂





My splits:


  • Distance: 5.0 miles
  • Duration: 46:57
  • Mile 1: 9:45
  • Mile 2: 9:09
  • Mile 3: 8:44
  • Mile 4: 8:26 <—so hard!
  • Mile 5: 11:10 <—walk/run style


It was a GREAT run!


A very late breakfast:


Raspberries, Greek yogurt, Dorset cereal (a berry and cherry museli), raw oatmeal, sesame cashew, banana, and chia seed mix.


As summer draws to a close, are you gearing up for races or winding down?  Every area seems to have a different “race season.”  I’m excited to get going with ours!



  • Heather (Heather's Dish) August 31, 2010, 10:59 am

    i don’t do races, but i’m definitely working on doing more workouts from home since snow’s just around the corner!

  • Maria August 31, 2010, 11:00 am

    I am so excited for fall and race season. I just signed up for my first half on October 30th!!

  • Heather @ Side of Sneakers August 31, 2010, 11:00 am

    I LOVE the Ripples Project 🙂 Can’t wait to hear how your 5K goes- I’m sure you’ll kick your PR in the butt with all the speedwork training you’ve been doing. Tri season is winding down, but running season is gearing up! 🙂

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin August 31, 2010, 11:00 am

    I’m gearing up for my first half marathon two weeks from Sunday!! I’m excited but nervous, too.

  • Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete August 31, 2010, 11:01 am

    Your tempo run looks fabulous! You have come so far with your speed!!

    Yes, last race of the season is 3 weeks away— Grand Columbian Half Ironman. I probably could race for another month after that, but I’m burnt out. I’m thinking an entire month of yoga after that!! Then, it is base training for next season!!

    You are going to do great with your race!! 😉

  • Kaitlyn (College Girl Runs) August 31, 2010, 11:01 am

    I am training for a marathon on October 17th, so as the summer is winding down right now, the long runs, speed workouts and tempo runs are definitely getting harder! Great job on your run, too. I got into such a comfortable zone of doing miles at 9:30-10 min miles, and I have to push through the discomfort and push myself to go around 8:30-9 min miles, so I know exactly what you mean!

  • Jess August 31, 2010, 11:01 am

    Yep, running a 5k on Saturday! It’s a trail race, so hoping for a sub 25:00!! 🙂

  • Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) August 31, 2010, 11:02 am

    A positive outlook always helps. Things can always get frustrating, but looking at the positive is really the best way to go. I am glad you started the day off right. I hope it is a good one for you Caitlin!

  • Ameena August 31, 2010, 11:03 am

    Thanks to bad knees I can’t run too much anymore but I am trying to be outdoors as much as possible before it gets too chilly and dark!

  • Holly @ couchpotatoathlete August 31, 2010, 11:07 am

    I haven’t heard of The Ripples Project before, I’ll have to look into it.

    I’m sure you’ll do great at your 5K! It is still “race season” in MN — I have a 10 mile the first week of October, I’m looking forward to it!

  • Laura @ Tidbits from My Mind August 31, 2010, 11:08 am

    good luck on your race Saturday!!

    although I haven’t gotten out as much as I wanted due to the heat and me not having the finances to do so, our racing season is slowly starting to wind down here in Ontario. I hope to do at least 2 races this fall though and might tackle a chilling December one too!

  • Wei-Wei August 31, 2010, 11:12 am

    Wow, is that a negative split? GREAT job! GOOD LUCK! 😀

  • Jacqueline August 31, 2010, 11:17 am

    I am so excited about the start of race season! In Central Cali. it starts in September, but the biggest month is October.
    Your going to do great on your 5k!

  • Maria @ Oh Healthy Day August 31, 2010, 11:18 am

    Woo-hoo! What a good run! Those are some mighty good negative splits!

    I’m gearing up for my very first 5K and I’m nervous, but excited. I did a practice 5K last night on the treadmill though and made it through, so I KNOW I can do it. Best of luck with yours!

  • Freya (Brit Chick Runs) August 31, 2010, 11:18 am

    Oooh do you get Dorset cereals in the US now?
    I’m training for my marathon in Oct, that’s it 🙂
    You’re going to do ace on the 5k girl, with that positive attitude!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 12:20 pm

      My mother in law bought it somewhere here but I’m not sure where!

  • Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman August 31, 2010, 11:18 am

    I don’t race, but I’m excited for this heat to go away. I’m much more likely to be active when the very act of breathing outside doesn’t leave me all stuffed-up. I love the crisp air in fall so much more than the thick swamp air we have now.

  • Kath August 31, 2010, 11:21 am

    I hope you break 23:00 to show me it can be done! That’s a 7:24 pace – woosh!!

  • Amelia August 31, 2010, 11:25 am

    Definitely gearing up for race season (and marathon in Oct!). Great job on your run!

  • Lindsay August 31, 2010, 11:26 am

    I haven’t been racing much this summer, but I am doing a fun 8k in October here in the DC area. For anyone near DC – check it out – Acumen Solutions Race for a Cause – you can chose a nonprofit to support with your race registration.

  • Dorry August 31, 2010, 11:26 am

    We are gearing up in Texas! Our half isn’t until December but we are trying to get in a 5K or 10K before then. Lots of options just depends if we are in town!

  • Laura@FindingAHealthyBalance....after a 100+ Pound weight loss!!! August 31, 2010, 11:26 am

    Gearing Up here in Central Florida! As you know it is just the start of our Race Season here…..=)

    Love the pictures.

  • lisasfoods August 31, 2010, 11:27 am

    I’m training for my second 5k. After running 12:00 miles on the last one, I’m hoping to at least break my record. As a beginner runner with spring allergies, it’s exciting to live in a place with lots of autumn races. Bring it one!

  • Lindsey August 31, 2010, 11:28 am

    I don’t race but good luck with your race Caitlin! You’re going to do great. I hope you don’t mind but I listed your blog and your other blog, Operation Beautiful on my blog as my favorite sites. I just started blogging and it’s quite addicting already. haha!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 12:22 pm

      <3 thanks so much!

  • Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg August 31, 2010, 11:28 am

    You’ll rock it!!! Good luck!

  • Rachel August 31, 2010, 11:29 am

    I’m gearing up! I’m so glad the weather is finally cooling down.

  • Leanne @ Radiant, Balanced & Fit August 31, 2010, 11:31 am

    I’m gearing up to do my first race ever on September 26! Just under four weeks to go… I’m so excited/nervous/anxious/pumped for it… but mostly excited!

  • Emily August 31, 2010, 11:32 am

    Sounds like a great morning and a great run; happy to hear things are looking up today! I am gearing up for a 5k in two weeks and looking to sign up for a few more and possibly a 10k for the fall. I also do a race on Thanksgiving so I guess this is more of my race-season than summer has been.

  • kalin August 31, 2010, 11:34 am

    my husband and i are getting ready to do our first 5k next month! i don’t know how trying to keep up running in the oregon winter will be though….

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat August 31, 2010, 11:37 am

    I love the Ripples cards! I always look forward to seeing the quotes in my inbox every Monday.
    This year wasn’t big race-wise for me, but I have to make a decision very soon as to whether or not I’m doing Boston in 2011…. I keep going back and forth in my head about whether I REALLY want it, or if it’s something I feel I SHOULD do, just because I qualified. Good luck on your 5km – I’m sure you’ll set a new personal record! 🙂

  • Whitney August 31, 2010, 11:38 am

    I have broken a 23 min 5k once and thought I was going to die. Pretty much a dead sprint the whole time. Very dooable!! Your training will pay off and you will succeed!! Have fun! 🙂

  • Tay August 31, 2010, 11:44 am

    Oh I LOVE the ripples guy!! Paul is actually from here where I went to school. And he came and talked to us when I was a freshman orientation leader. I get his emails every Monday 🙂 Totally makes the week start out great. I have my one race in October and CAN’T WAIT!! It’s been too long!

    • Heather August 31, 2010, 12:39 pm

      What a blogger-coincidence! I worked with Paul & Ripples when I was at college in Madison – we did a fundraiser for Campus Activities Board putting together Ripples Decks 🙂 He is such a powerful conversationalist/speaker- so much inspiration and motivation just pouring out of him! XO

  • eatmovelove August 31, 2010, 11:53 am

    Those are some impressive splits wow! Can’t wait to hear about it. What kind of bread is that?!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 12:23 pm

      some sort of sunflower sourdough?

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing August 31, 2010, 11:54 am

    You’re going to ROCK the 5k!
    And I love the Ripples project! Their e-mails are super inspiring 🙂

  • Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine August 31, 2010, 11:59 am

    You’re going to do great!! My “race season” literally just started…this is my first week of training!! I’m excited to run in the cooler fall weather 🙂

  • Brittany (A Healthy Slice of Life) August 31, 2010, 12:06 pm

    I’m gearing up! 5k here I come… it’s my own personal “marathon” 🙂

  • Lauren August 31, 2010, 12:09 pm

    I have 4 races on my calendar for the rest of 2010:

    9/18: Apple Festival 5k (determined to bring home the gold for my age group :o) )
    9/25: Salem Lake 30k Trail Run
    11/14: Outer Banks Half Marathon
    12/11: Thunder Road Marathon

    All of the runs are incorporated into my training for Thunder Road – we shall see how it works!

  • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 12:23 pm

    Getting ready for some open water swims in the Bay Area! But I guess you can race pretty much year-round here. Good luck at your 5K!

  • Lauren at KeepItSweet August 31, 2010, 12:27 pm

    i don’t race but I am running more lately and pushing myself to run outside while i have the chance!

  • Julia @ Brit Bride August 31, 2010, 12:28 pm

    Lovely positive post Caitlin. I am loving your blogging tips too, your live writer ones are very useful and should save me a ton of time resizing pics!

    I have a few races coming up – a 1Ok this weekend and a 12 mile “HELLRUNNER” race in November (the week after my honeymoon no less!). I like a challenge!


  • Sarah August 31, 2010, 12:34 pm

    Gearing up! I am running the AIDS Walk Atlanta & 5K Run on October 17th in honor of some of Infectious Disease Program patients from my summer internship as a hospital chaplain and then I run my first 1/2 marathon on Thanksgiving in ATL.

  • Kelly August 31, 2010, 12:35 pm

    You’re gonna do great this weekend! I’ll be cheering for you in my head! I just signed up for a 5k two weeks from now, and I really have no idea how I’ll do in it!

  • diana August 31, 2010, 12:40 pm

    do you ever wonder how or what the people are thinking or feeling when they finds these notes? especially your OB notes?! it would be so awesome to capture that moment. finding the notes that brighten my face is definitely the highlight of my day!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 12:45 pm

      🙂 sometimes people find the notes and email me descriptions of what it was like to find it… it’s truly amazing how powerful of an effect it can have.

  • diana August 31, 2010, 12:44 pm

    thanks for the link too! i love this quote from the ripples project!

    a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step
    -tao te ching

    so so so true…

  • Lauren August 31, 2010, 12:46 pm

    In the words of George Lopez…”You’ve got this!!!”

  • Cyndi @ Weightless Life August 31, 2010, 12:49 pm

    Good luck on Saturday! I’m gearing up for a few more races this season, including my first half-marathon. Around here races tend to keep going until the end of November, or whenever the snow starts. I’m lucky to live in a place where there is such a long race season.

  • Nicole August 31, 2010, 12:51 pm

    I’m just starting mine up again. I had a few races in the spring, one in June and I took July and August off. My next race is a 10K in Sept (3 weeks actually) and a 10 miler in October. After my June race (1/2 marathon) I needed a break! But I’m happy for cooler weather and the upcoming races.

  • Jillian @ Reshape Your Life August 31, 2010, 1:03 pm

    I don’t race, I’ve just started running, but I’m looking forward to the cooler weather and having more time to hit the pavement!

  • Paige (Running Around Normal) August 31, 2010, 1:17 pm

    I love that you have an training un-plan! So many different options work for different people 🙂 I definitely need a plan that’s fleeexxxible. Great job on the run!

  • Monica August 31, 2010, 1:33 pm

    I have a spin instructor that always reminds us that when it starts to feel uncomfortable it means we are doing it right and to keep pushing through. I think the same thing when running or cycling outdoors.

    I am gearing up for my first ever 5k in September. The only “formal” run I have ever done was the high school 1 mile test and I walked for most of that.

  • Amber@momsgottheruns August 31, 2010, 1:39 pm

    Races are starting up soon here in SC. I’ve got a 4.1 mile mud run obstacle course end of sept, 5 k in october, 10 k in november, and half marathon in december (my ultimate goal!). good luck on your 5k! you can do it!

  • Lindsey August 31, 2010, 2:00 pm

    Sounds like you’re ready for your 5k! Goodluck–you’ll do great 🙂
    And the racing season is starting here in Georgia soon, plus my cross country season starts in a couple of weeks with a 5k. My goal is the same as yours, so hopefully I’ll reach it.

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit August 31, 2010, 2:06 pm

    I’m gearing up for my first 1/2 marathon in November! Summer might be official ‘race season’ around here, but the fall is my favorite time to run outside 🙂

  • Rhonda August 31, 2010, 2:07 pm

    Good luck! You will rock that course! I’m gearing up to run the Dallas White Rock marathon in December. I simply can’t wait to have cooler temps to run in.
    Oh my gosh – that food looks FANTASTIC!

  • Katherine @ Left Coast Contessa August 31, 2010, 2:12 pm

    I am gearing up for race season! I have my first 10k in a week and a half, another in October, my first half in November and I am contemplating signing up for another half in January. Love the pics in this post btw!

  • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 2:21 pm

    hey Caitlin! I finally had a chance to read your book and really love it. So positive and uplifting! I went to Target today and left my 1st OB note on a Starbucks nutritional information pamphlet!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 2:30 pm

      Thank you!!

  • Tina August 31, 2010, 2:21 pm

    I NEEDED to read those little quotes today since I’m getting kind of anxious about things, including the 30 Days. Thanks for posting them. 🙂 They really did help put things in perspective for me and WHY I’m starting it.

  • Mary August 31, 2010, 2:21 pm

    Its funny that where I’m from in NY, race season is ending, and here in NC, race season is just starting. Handsome Boyfriend says the same thing about Orlando, where he’s from, everything is just starting up again. 🙂

  • Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] August 31, 2010, 2:28 pm

    You’re gonna rock that 5K, woman!!

    I have 2 races coming up –> a 10-mi. in Sept. and half-marathon in Oct. I’m so excited!!

  • Amber K August 31, 2010, 2:40 pm

    I don’t do races, but some friends are running/walking a half marathon soon! And since the Hood to Coast is over, I think it is winding down here.

  • Kristin S August 31, 2010, 4:43 pm

    Hi you might have said this before but i was wondering what you use to track how far you go during your runs? I think I might have heard you say Garmin in one of your other posts but which brand/type of garmin do you have or recommend?:) Thanks for your posts it helps keep me motivated to live a healthy life!

    • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 4:43 pm

      Your welcome!!

      Garmin 305

      • Marie August 31, 2010, 6:06 pm

        Okay I gotta call you out. Second time… “You’re” welcome.

        • Caitlin August 31, 2010, 6:13 pm

          Your right 😉

  • Amanda August 31, 2010, 4:54 pm

    I am gearing up for my FIRST RACE EVER! I am so excited…I never thought I would be able to do this!

  • Heather August 31, 2010, 5:13 pm

    great job! GL on your race!

  • Tanya Kummerow August 31, 2010, 5:34 pm

    Great 8:30 minute mile! You rock!

  • Mac August 31, 2010, 8:20 pm

    I am just gearing up! I will be doing a couple events for work-an indoor tri and a 10K… super excited!

  • Tamika August 31, 2010, 8:40 pm

    My very first 5K will the Women’s Only race in Greensboro on October 2. I’m very excited. Thank you for providing endless inspiration and tips.

  • Chelsey August 31, 2010, 9:44 pm

    Yay for good runs and good moods!!! I am running a half in 2 weeks! Very excited

  • Carol September 1, 2010, 1:23 am

    I guess summer up here in Canada is “race season”, as most of the big runs start in May and run through till September/October. I have a 22km run in the mountains at the end of September, a 10km on Thanksgiving (Canada’s) for Alzheimers (forgive spelling) and then my 3rd marathon in October in Toronto, Ontario. After that, there’s a fun 5-miler in the mountains (in November, at night!) and my usual New Year’s 5km run to end/start the year. That gives me time to start plotting next year’s races.
    Good job on the speed work…mine starts next week. One last day of hills training ahead for me.

  • Sana September 1, 2010, 6:55 am

    I am gearing up for my own fake races. Hahah- I just make potential plans to run a race and have fun with my runs whenever I can 🙂

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