*I’d love to hear your thoughts down below on several questions I have this week!*

Instead of going through last week’s workouts day-by-day, let me just say that the thing I was dreading even before I started training for this half actually happened: I got sick. Yeah, yeah, people get sick all the time. They survive. Head colds are not going to bring down the world. But I knew that because I’m a newbie runner and my training schedule is everything right now – getting sick and missing a run or three would really stress me out (other than flip-flopping days to run, the only time I’ve really missed a scheduled run is when I hurt my back a few weeks ago). And it did stress me out but I guess the benefit of feeling like I’d been hit by a bus is that I didn’t really care about anything other than where the box of tissues ended up. In hindsight, it fell on probably the best of all weeks when I was scheduled to run several 3-milers and no longer runs. I only ran twice last week and even then, it was pretty pathetic.

A handwritten note from a child to a Mom. My sweet 9-year old left this note on my pillow one night when he knew I was feeling a bit discouraged.

Thankfully I feel like I’m on the road to recovery (thank you trusty essential oils, shots of OJ, elderberry syrup and apple cider vinegar, and week long early bedtimes) and am hoping to have a better running week this week.

The Plan:

-3 miles Monday
-Cross- or strength-train Tuesday
-4 miles on Wednesday
-3 miles on Thursday
-Rest or stretch/yoga on Friday
-7 miles on Saturday

If you are following the same schedule I posted way back when, I’ve changed things a little bit for these last weeks until race day. Most all of the 2 mile runs I’ve upped to 3 miles because I’m comfortable there and don’t mind the extra mile. Also, the next three Saturdays in a row have long runs at 8 miles. Instead of running 8 this coming Saturday, I’m “only” (sounds hilarious to say that) doing 7. Just my gut feeling that it would be better to start there and do 8 the next week since I’ll be able to run it twice. Seven will be my longest so far. Pray for me.

I received a fun and unexpected package in the mail this week from my longtime friend, Mel (her running story was featured a couple weeks ago). She told me it was time I started thinking about important things like body glide and shot blocks (who am I and how did I get here?). Thankfully she included details about how often, when, and what kinds of runs she uses both of these things for and this next week I’ll be using both on my 7-miler. Scary and kind of hard core all at the same time.

Many of you have commented with feedback on chafing solutions, carrying water, eating before and after, etc. so in anticipation of all your wisdom, I have a few more questions.

Current dilemmas + one thing I’m loving:

-Energy Question: Do you run with gu or shot blocks? If so, how often do you eat them (will I gag?) and for how long of runs do you use them? I’m running with water in a pack for runs over 4 miles and occasionally an applesauce pouch thingie for runs over 5 miles but that’s it.

-Chafing Question: Several chimed in last week about using body glide or the T2 stuff which brings me to ask (so glad we are all friends here): any recommendations for sports bras or shorts or running clothes in general that chafe less than others?

-Something I Love: My sister (who happens to be getting back into running right now and just committed last week to the half marathon also – sweet!) told me the reason I’m getting blisters (not fun) is because I’m running in every day cotton socks. Jeez, how was I supposed to know? She told me about Feetures. As great as they sound (labeled with a Left and Right for goodness sakes, they must be awesome), I resisted for several weeks because, dude, paying $15 bucks for a pair of socks is against my religion. Finally I buckled because my blisters were killing me, and honestly, wearing them for the first time, I think my feet were singing. Plus, no more blisters. I have to wash them each time I run because I’m not buying another pair right now, but totally worth the money so far.

-Hair/Headband Question: I have short-ish hair right now that’s a pain to keep back because it’s not ponytail length and I need some good tips on running headbands/solutions that really do their thing and keep short hair back without slipping. Help?

Ok, I’ll stop bugging you. Here’s to a great running week, I can just feel it.

How was YOUR week?