Monday, April 30, 2012

Taper Time!!!!!

Today my ticker says 11 days until Ice Age 50!  SO this means I am heading into my taper. I am feeling so good right now!! 

Physically, everything is as it should be and for that I am so grateful!  My left knee has been bothering me off and on for the last month.  It is a weird pain - it will not hurt during a run but will keep me from running the next day.  But guess what?  That is gone!  I am wondering if it is because I am wearing and loving Brooks Pure Flow shoes and/or that I am running more on trails and less on pavement.  I had a great massage on Saturday and Shannon worked out a huge knot in my hamstring.  I made an appt to have it worked on three days before my race.  Can't hurt.  So, I am heading into taper in good condition.

Mentally, I am where I want to be.  I know I can run 50 miles.  I know that I may have to walk. I have visualized every possible thing that can and will happen - best and worst case scenario.  I am mentally tough which is good because I think this distance will be harder in that capacity.

I don't mind taper time.  I don't get worried that I will lose what I have gained (strength) or that I will gain what I have lost (weight.)  My mind does play some tricks on my body though and this happens in every taper.  I get ghost pains.  Anybody else experience that?  All of a sudden my calf will develop cramps or a quad will be tender.  I think it is because I am ultra aware of my body at this time.  Anyway, I am excited to run less this week and next and take the time to get more out of the rest of my life!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A Rose by Any Other Name

I think I want a new name.  Many trail runners acquire a nickname as they traverse the wild mud and rocky paths that we love.  I know the name needs to be earned, but I am offering a list of suggestions in case you want to start calling me one.  What about Metta World Peace?  That is a pretty cool moniker!  I like the world.  I like peace!  What?  It is already taken?  Yeah, and didn't he just get fined like a kabillion dollars for elbowing some other tall dude in the head?  C'mon, Mr. Peace- seriously?  Ok, back to the name quest.  I fall every time I am on the trail - never fails!  Day Tripper? Slip? Tumbler?  I have lost four toenails - Hamster Toes? (if you have lost a toenail then you know that is what your toes look like sans nails!)  I am not a fast trail runner, so maybe Slug?  I am always getting lost - I truly think that without my friend who is a great navigator I would still be in a casino in Vegas (and that trip was SIX  years ago!!!)  Maybe the Wanderer? Confusion?  I am poking fun at myself - but I really do like some of the trail names that I have heard out there.  It is so interesting to read the stories behind the names.  Any suggestions?

Oh, by the way - 13 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Lucky Me!

I spoil myself rotten~ peanut butter M & Ms, a night with friends with lots of laughter and too much wine, and brand new Brooks Pure Flow running shoes!!  It's been a good week!  We all deserve this, right?
Can't wait to try out my new Brooks PureFlow shoes!

My mileage will go up a bit this week, but still down from my peak weeks.  I have 22 days left until Ice Age. I am not sure if I am ready for this taper yet and am really surprised that according to my plan, the mileage goes down pretty quickly.  Now my longest run is 2 hrs!  I am not ready for that!  I will follow the plan this week because it still calls for a back to back this weekend.  But I think that next weekend I will do a four hour run on Sat.  This will be good for my confidence without overdoing it.  This may be cheating a bit, but that's ok, right?

Friday, April 13, 2012


April 13 - that means that one month from today I will be finished with my very first 50 mile ultramarathon.  That thought gives me a little  panic, a bit of anxiety, and a  whole lotta excitement!!!!!!  I cannot believe that day is so close!  I feel like I have so much more to do to prepare, but at the same time I feel like I have done what I needed to do.  Before I began training for this run, I set some goals.  My biggest goal was to get to race day in a healthy state. The road to that goal has not been easily traveled.  When I think back to all the injuries (and luckily they have been minor) I am surprised I have made it to this point.  Taken down twice by the it band, once by a minor sprain, and the ever present ab mystery.  There were a couple of times when I almost, ALMOST gave up. But I did not and for that I am very proud!  It just proves to me that I can overcome these little setbacks and move forward. I need to remember that on May 12 because if there is one thing I know for sure is that 50 miles is a long way and plenty of time in which muscles can act up, blisters can erupt, and cramps can attack!
Ice Age Trail - Madison, WI  -looks so friendly, doesn't it?

Another goal that I set was to learn how to fuel well.  Um, yeah - I think I learned this lesson very well.  You would think with the big miles I have been running that I would have lost weight. Not so in my case.  I eat so much now and all the time.  But here is the thing with that- I want to make sure that my muscles are well fed, so I think sometimes I go overboard.  Oh well!  So, I have figured out what works for me - Nuun throughout the race, no gels, real food sits best - Granola Thins, pb sandwiches, and Honey Stinger waffles are my tried and trues.  AND the food at aid stations is soooooo good- I can't wait for the gummy bears, Pringles, and flat Mt Dew!!!
**This past week my mileage was 35.  What a wonderful scale back week and just in time!  My muscles and other soft tissues are getting a little crabby.  My long run is tomorrow= 10 miles as a pacer for the MN Pacers Team.  I LOVE pacing!  Always meet so many really cool people!
**No luck wished for the Boston-bound - because luck doesn't play any part in YOUR performance!  You have worked hard and trained well for this race.  No luck, all skill and talent, baby!!

Monday, April 2, 2012

A Celebration!

I just feel like celebrating! I am 38 days out from my race(run actually- does anyone really race for 50 miles?) I am feeling really good at this point. I have overcome so many physical issues and a few mental ones too. This past weekend I ran 33 miles on Saturday and followed with 18 on Sunday and I actually feel pretty darn good today. I spent a lot of time in the garden yesterday so I am feeling a bit sore from that. I think that is crazy! I can run long distances, but get taken out my pulling weeds and climbing stairs!
**sorry, my thoughts keep getting interrupted by the loud voice of the man in the hospital room next door. He keeps talking about hustling up some pretty girls. And I never knew someone could let so many f-bombs fly!! Maybe he is celebrating too!
So back to my own celebrating. So I made it though my long back to back weekend and have another one to go this weekend of the same length. I am really looking forward to it. One last time to refine my fueling plan. One last time to see how far I can push my body doing long miles. One last chance to lose another toenail!! Then I head into a really nice taper. I am happy to say that I am not afraid of the taper this time. I am excited to let my legs rejuvenate. I am excited to find a couple of extra hours in my day!!!

Very sad note today- mourning Micah True. He certainly was a catalyst in my choice to run an ultra. After reading Born to Run, I decided I wanted to run freely and happily as Micah did. He was an inspiration to all and even in death continues to inspire. I have read so many posts today relating to how we never know which day will be our last so live each day as it is!

Excuse my typing today- using an iPad while at the hospital with my mom. She is in surgery right now having a pacemaker put in. Surgery went well last week. Hopefully she will be home on Wed.