PC: Tommy Martino

Sunday, January 31, 2016

TornTendonSchmornTendon - Let's Galloway this Trials!

Two weeks.


T  W  O    W  E  E  K  S  !  !

I can’t believe how fast the last seven weeks have zoomed by. In 13 short days I’ll be running the Olympic Trials Marathon in LA!! I mean, I blinked, and here I am. The torn tendon on my left heel is healing… just slowly (as expected) but with the blessing of my PT & coach, I was able to return to running with minor discomfort two weeks ago. Running again is a huge relief… even if it was to start only at 90 seconds at a time to start. I’ll take it. It wasn’t pain-free… but the niggle is tolerable for now and the doctor reassures me I won’t be doing any more harm by returning to running with the supervision of my PT and coach.

Yay to running again! 

Peppy Stepping Gym Rat

So far, January has proven to be a similar amount of time on feet as my ‘normal’ 85-100 mile running weeks. I’m fluctuating from 14-17 hours a week on my feet/in the gym. Although, I’m not running much during these times… I’m walking on an incline A LOT, cycling and doing more strength training and core than I’ve previously done. The progress I’ve made in my power walking (or PW as I like to call it!) is so tangible and exponential, it’s blowing my mind! When I started PW in late December, 6% incline was hard and bugged my foot. I was also going about 3.6 mph for 30-45 minutes. Now I’m a PW robot. A 10% incline is my baseline and I’m going 4.1-4.3 mph all the way up to 14%. Don’t forget this is for hours at a time (that’s like 11-12 miles straight up yo!). PW. PW. PW! I may have to add this to my regular training once I’m back to good... Ha! Probably not.

Get strong, look fly!
My home away from home.... the gym and t-mill! 

Hello Mt. Scott!

I’ve done a lot of treadmill training in the past, so the hamster wheel doesn’t bother me much. Usually when running, I crank some good tunes and just zone out while people watching at the gym. TV while running makes me a bit motion sick with all the bouncing…. But for my multi-hour PW workouts, TV is kinda necessary to pass the hours. I found HGTV to be quite addictive and my go-to channel. At some point I stumbled upon a Property Brothers marathon. Ummmmm…. Ladies, have you seen them? #twinning! They are like 6’ 5” …  quaffed hair, 5’oclock shadows, tight, very tight pants, tool belts, sledgehammers… ok what was I talking about? Oh yeah… back to training. I’ve also been spinning on my bike in Andy’s man-cave a little and have started Making of a Murder. Did he do it? Wait, don’t tell me!

Head Up, Wings Out – Lets Fly!

And here’s a big BONUS about the trials and this upcoming race season… I get to race wearing an Oiselle Elite Kit with 17 of my teammates. I’ve never been on a running team until this last summer when I joined Oiselle Volée. Being a part of this growing, encouraging, uplifting team has far exceeded my expectations. I love, love, love it! Although running is a very personal, individual sport, it is so much better when you have a group of women who embolden and inspire each other. I haven’t written much about Oiselle, but being a part of Haute Volée is also a dream come true for me and something I’ve aspired for a few years now. Every time I want to stop PW or quit the last rep of lunges, I think about lining up with my teammates in our matching (HOT!) uniforms. I want to be my best for this team and this company, so I’ve been working damn hard.


Sometimes racing and running still feels new to me. I didn’t race in high school or run in college. One time, I stole a Budweiser banner from the Silver Dollar bar downtown when I was probably 20 or 21 … I ran out their back gate and about seven blocks until I was sure the bartender wasn’t chasing me anymore. That concluded my collegiate running career. (And they keep that back gate locked now – ha!) I never intended to ignite my competitive spirit as an adult with distance running. And it certainly didn’t happen right away. I had to mature a lot before the fire began to really burn. I was a bit wild after college in my 20s. Running long and racing fast took a level of commitment I wasn’t ready to give until my late 20s /early 30s. I honestly think my biggest talents in running are what’s floating around in my skull. Relentless work ethic, stubbornness, independent and goal-oriented – this is what makes me good at enduring distance running. Sure, there’s some God-given good stuff too, but I was never fast or particularly gifted to start. I had to work my ass off to get there and here! And I love at least 90% of those steps in that journey (c’mon… they all aren’t great!). It's good for me to think about where I've started, and why I started and remember the reasons I push and push and push. So… here’s a real treat. Keep reading the rest of this blog and I’ll reward you with some awesome pictures of me throughout the years. Yikes!

Meet My Other Team! (These guys are working really hard to get me to that start line at the trials)

Coach Elliot! I’ve been working with Elliot since the fall of 2011. I can honestly say that Elliot’s approach to my training is spot on for someone like me who wants to compete at a high level but has a high-stress job and is often time crunched. Sometimes we are cautious with training and other times we throw caution to the wind. I never ever feel like he’s handing me someone else’s training plan or I the plan is something cookie cutter.  I never feel like I don’t have a say in the direction, duration or any other facet of the training. We meet once a week over coffee for me and tea for Elliot discussing the week’s agenda and training plan. We break the training down weekly and look at a more macro level too depending on my ‘A’ races. I think his recent PW, biking and short interval running program he’s concocted has pushed me without re-injury to the best possible place for the Trials.  Sometimes Elliot and I run long together on the weekends, never discussing my training, but rather gossiping and chatting about nothing in particular. There’ve has also been a handful of road trips and vacation races where he’s accompanied the Drobeck’s. Elliot never disappoints to entertain me. I’m happy he’s not only my coach but also my friend. Oh, I know he would also be sad if I didn’t mention he’s got righteous dance floor moves.

No it's not a mad scientist - it's Coach Elliot!
Well.... kind of a mad scientist.
Physical Therapist Matt! Andy starting working with Matt earlier this year to help out his swimming mobility and after my DNF at CIM, Andy suggested I see him to have my calf dry needled and get a rehab plan. (Personally, I think Andy just wanted me to get my crying ass off the couch.) After a few days of loathing, it was a good choice. Right after my first visit was when the ‘B’ standard changed for trials qualification. So for my second visit I told Matt, “I need to be able to run a marathon in 9 weeks. Can we do that?” Blank stare.  I’m sure in Matt’s head he was thinking, “This girl is crazy.” He politely told me that normal treatment of a torn tendon in this area of my foot is about 12 weeks before you even start running. We didn’t have that luxury of time. So let the healing begin! For the past seven weeks there’s been lots of dry needling, calf scraping, glute activation, mobility exercises, heel raises….. SERIOUSLY hours of PT exercises, daily! But I’m a good student and a diligent Type A… so I’m happy to report, Matt has been pleasantly surprised that I am back to running faster than he anticipated.

Let the healing begin! No scraping or needling in this pic. 

Elliot and Matt have put their heads together worked some magic the past few months to get me on the right path both writing plans & programs that compliment each other… teetering the line of overloading and healing, all the while trying to get me in some semblance of running shape, but not re-injuring the area. I can’t thank them both enough for going well above and beyond to help me start this race.

I also need to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who’s given me encouraging words, texts, emails, hi-fives, fb shout outs…. It’s so awesome and makes me work a little harder each day! I should have a Olympic Trials Recap after the race 😀  #LA2016



My first marathon - PDX 2002
Look at that tiny medal! 

My second marathon - PDX 2003
11 minutes faster!

First Boston! 2004 
86+ degrees, noon start
The inaugural Missoula Marathon 2007 with my folks
Another 10+ minute PR
Sub 3:10 in Ogden, UT 2008
After multiple attempts, my first sub 3 in big 2:54:00 fashion
Eugene 2011
My first big win - 2012 Rock N Roll AZ!
Smuggling raisins across the finish line

My PR - Twin Cities, MN 2013


Beaver is obsessed with drinking out of the sink
I bought the cat bed for Harley... Steve likes it best
Feeding Time
Chester is very happy I visited him


  1. Love this! I'm so excited to cheer for you from Montana when you run LA! Thanks for being an inspiring leader for us MT Volee! You're amazing! :)

  2. Cheering for you from the Bitterroot! Your drive and incremental progress is so awesome to watch (and read about) - such an inspiration. Go for it!

    1. Thank you Amy!! I appreciate your kind words :)