Monday, August 29, 2011
I ran 24 miles Saturday with company at a faster pace than I usually do my long runs (8:08 pace) and 17 miles solo on Sunday at easy pace (8:41). After resting on Friday other than a light swim, I felt great on Saturday's run - the question that loomed in my head was how I would feel the following morning. I woke up in the middle of the night Saturday with some soreness and general achiness, causing a little bit of worry about how Sunday's run would play out. The first two miles were a bit rough, but after I got warmed up, I started to feel much better. And, as the miles ticked by, I started to feel better and better. I finished Sunday's run with a big smile on my face, thinking that I can actually do this thing.
67.68 running miles last week. How do I feel this morning? Pretty darn good, surprisingly.
I think the biggest challenge with the 50-mile distance, will not be the running or the miles. Similar to the Ironman, I think it will be a mind game. It will be about getting my head in the right place so I can run 50 miles. It will be about getting my legs to be my mind's bitch.
So, onward and upward with another week of training. This week, though, I need to get in some trail miles.
Less than 3 months until I run my first 50-miler. Sometimes that's exciting; other times it makes me want to soil myself.
Friday, August 26, 2011
So, I had planned to do my long runs for the weekend Friday before work and Saturday morning, so that I would have Sunday free to sleep in or cycle if I got so inspired. But, I’m re-arranging my schedule. Again. Clearly my plan for the week every week is more like a rough guideline that I cannot be expected to follow. At all. I was flat out exhausted yesterday, my legs felt like dead weight and I was having some hip pain, in which I knew that my long run wasn't going to happen this morning. I needed rest instead. So rest it is.
My 50-miler training schedule calls for a 3.5-4 hour run on Saturday, and a 3 hour run on Sunday. I like to run, but that is a whole lot of running. And, early morning running to *try* to beat the heat (really not possible). I will drag my butt out of bed tomorrow morning at 4:30 am and remember the mornings when I used to come in at 4:30 am (sometimes I miss college). How times have changed.
On the bright side, I will not feel guilty about going to Baskin Robbins tonight for the third time this week since I'll certainly be running it off this weekend.
Wish me luck and send me good vibes...
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
- Thank you to everyone for their well wishes for Flash. And, for not making me feel like a wack-job for being so concerned about a dog. It means a lot. My buddy Flash started Phenobarbital today to help control his seizures.
- Last week my schedule got a little out of whack and things didn't go quite as planned. I am human. It was just one of those weeks where I got done what I could and didn't sweat what I couldn't get done. I am trying to learn to let it go. Still ended up with decent running mileage, but barely swam or biked.
- Changing my training schedule around for the 50-miler and experimenting with some different training options - but, most importantly returning to the back-to-back long runs, as opposed to the long ride/brick Saturday and the long run Sunday. This will have me going into the Half-Ironman a little less prepared than I usually am, but will ensure I'm fully prepared for the 50-miler.
- Played tennis with Dan on Sunday and got dominated. It was the first time I had played tennis since I was like 9 and played with my brother in our driveway. Sadly, my skills have not improved any.
- I've become addicted to Baskin Robbins. They opened one not far from our house, and I am there all.the.time. I am not even that big of an ice cream person. I blame the heat.
- Do you ever have those days, weeks, months, where it just seems you can never catch up? It seems like every day I have a to do list a mile long, and more often then not, only 1 or possibly 2 things get done on them. And, I don't even have kids. How is it that I cannot keep even keep up with the laundry or keep the house clean?
- I'm getting really excited for college football season. Especially since my Gamecocks are supposed to be damn good this year!
- I think that's about all I have to report. It's only hump day, I'm exhausted, and need a nap
Thursday, August 18, 2011
I really don't think that there is a better friend than your dog. Loyalty, undying and true, along with unconditional love is the glue that binds man with his best friend.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Monday, August 15, 2011
In short, it went pretty well. I measured the course a big long (13.21) and clocked a 1:36:34. Not near a PR, but given the conditions, not too bad. I finished in 36th overall, 5th woman and 1st in my group. I also got to see several Daily Mile friends at the race, which was awesome!!
Friday, August 12, 2011
I haven't thought a whole lot about my goals for this race. I'm shortening my normal bike/run tomorrow morning to leave my legs a little fresher for Sunday, but didn't want to skip it entirely. I've been training in the heat, but with a 7:30 am race start, it will start to get pretty darn hot about 6 miles in. The course appears to be pretty flat, so I *think* I should be able to run a 1:32-1:33 race, putting me right at 7:05-7:10 minute miles. I would imagine the competition is pretty tough at this race, but I would love to place in my age group. We'll see what the day brings!
If you're going to be at Hottest Half, please say hello if you see me! I'll be wearing blue shorts and a black Mizuno sports top!
Hope everyone has a great weekend...I rented 'Soul Surfer' and am looking forward to curling up on the couch tonight and doing absolutely nothing!
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
In about 3 months, I am planning to run the JFK 50 Mile ultramarathon. As the realization is starting to hit me, I have spent a lot of time researching anything and everything related to the JFK race and the 50 mile distance itself.
I am frightened–not of the running, not of the distance, not of the pain- but mostly of the unknown, namely, where it will take me internally in that uncharted territory of mind. I’ve come to realize how much further the distance is compared to my normal runs, and it is daunting. I remember having the same feeling going into my Ironman. I had put in the training, but I had never put all of the pieces together. I did not swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, then run a marathon in training - not even near that. Just as I won’t run near 50 miles in training for JFK. I have a profound respect for the distance. Like with sound, where volume, measured in decibels, increases exponentially, the level of difficulty of a long run increases with the distance exponentially.
Many of you know I am originally from the
The biggest thing I’ve been struggling with is setting my time goal. When signing up for this race I had two specific goals: to run the entire thing (no walking!) and to average 9 minute miles, ultimately finishing in around 7 hrs and 30 min. Seems relatively easy in theory…until I started doing more research on this unknown distance they call the 50-miler. To be honest, I always thought the longer distance would play to my strength. I am actually not that fast, I just don’t slow down as much as others, which is why I prefer to run a marathon over a 5k any day. I was banking on this theory applying in the 50 miler. But, what if half-way through, I am way off pace? Will I be able to remain mentally focused? What if I have to walk the last 10 miles? What if I am completely humbled by the distance? Will I be able to accept 'just a finish'?
The race is a mix of very technical hilly trails (15.5miles), dirt flat path (26.3miles) and rolling roads (8.4miles) (the race is actually 50.2miles total). While I am not confident in my ability to run 9 min miles on technical trails, we are done with the technical part of the race first, and then I am confident in my ability to run 9 or sub 9’s….but for how long? Can I hold it for 34 more miles?
I read that one should not expect to complete a 50-miler without walking (unless you are a super star elite or highly experienced). In fact, most people utilize a run/walk strategy. So, it is realistic for me to think I can run for 50 miles without walking? I don’t know. I think back to Ironman C’ouer D’Alene. I had the same goal going into the marathon portion of the Ironman. I ended up walking through some of the water stops the last 6-7 miles and finished right at a 4 hour marathon/9 min miles. So, will this experience be a similar experience? Again, I don’t know.
And, speaking of running hours and hours at a time, I’m going to have to eat something other than gel packets. Eating on the run isn’t something you can take or leave when it comes to ultra running, and that isn’t something I’ve been training (mental note: must do). How easy will I be able to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the run?
I know much of the success is a function of the mind. But, I know how naive I feel about the distance, and don’t want to get my ass handed to me as a result. I’m a big believer in the ‘Go Big or Go Home’ theory…I just don’t want to be going home at mile 30.
This should be interesting.
Monday, August 8, 2011
Friday, August 5, 2011
This week took a different turn than planned. My training was (unintentionally) significantly reduced. I haven't been on my bike since last Saturday. I did not work out in the evenings at all. I skipped Tuesday morning run group for extra sleep. I blew off my usual Tuesday evening group ride. I skipped some lunch time swims. And, my plans for a Thursday evening ride were easily exchanged for pizza and beer with my husband. I took two complete days off from running during the week (I must be sick). My swim workouts were all easy and fly by my pants.
Feeling guilty for my so called laziness this week, I woke up this morning thinking I should get up and get in a ride before work, but laid in bed watching the clock turnover from 5:00 to 6:00 and knew it wasn't going to happen. When the time read 7:00 a.m., I made the decision not to worry about it. I let myself off the hook. It’s true I will not meet goal for number of training hours this week. So be it. My body wanted to rest this week, and I let it. I've been putting it through hell, and it was time to give it some rest.
Too often I let my type A sometimes crazy mind take over with guilt when I don't meet my goals for the week. Like somehow running/biking/swimming xxx numbers of miles each week determines my worth as a person. I completely exclude the middle ground. It was time to get over myself. It’s not like I'm a pro athlete or anything. I can work hard, but I also need to know when enough is enough. Training should be fun, but not an obligation.
In reality there will be weeks where I will not meet my goals. And that reality does not need to upset me; I need to let myself off this self-imposed hook and just be free to do what I can and forget the rest.
It felt good to let myself off the hook this week.
Thursday, August 4, 2011
Congratulations! You have successfully put up with me for four years of marriage. And believe me, I know that is not an easy feat. I know I am not always the easiest to put up with and sometimes I let my prima donna come out (like last night when our AC went out and I was determined it was the end of the world and we would all melt in our sleep) . I know I am not perfect and yet you love me still. I love you not only for who you are but for who you help me to be.
It is hard to believe that 4 years have flown by, and yet, it is also hard to imagine life without you. Like all marriages we have challenges and blessings, but most importantly we have been there for each other. You are not just a “husband”, you are also my best friend, life partner, and my support.
Anniversaries are a time to remember where you have come from and where you are going. I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for us. And as I remember this special day, I wanted to share a picture with you:
Anyway - our AC crapped out last night. And by crap out I mean not functioning at all. It was 86 degrees in my house, and despite our frantic google search to try to figure out how to fix it ourselves, we were unsuccessful. Shit. It was too late to call the AC repair guy and too late to drag ourselves and two hound dogs to a hotel. We found one box fan, plugged it in....and, nothing. It wouldn't work. So, needless to say, neither of us got much sleep. I woke up several times last night in a hot sweat.
Since we weren't sleeping anyway, we decided to get up and go to run group. I always warm-up from home to meet the group. Half delirious this morning, I guess I wasn't picking my feet up and tripped and face planted during the warm-up, producing another nice battle wound on my knee. The rest of the workout didn't go much better. But, I got done what I could (which is really the theme of my week with work and the heat). Now, to wait for our savior, the AC repairman, who will hopefully tell us he can fix our AC today at a reasonable price (that's not too much to ask for, right?)
Needless to say, I was a pretty grumpy bitch last night and this morning with everything going on. Still, these arrived for me at work, Yeah, I think he's a keeper.