Friday, March 29, 2013

Ready, Set, Think!

I like to play this little game with my friends and family.  I think it is fun - they probably think it is annoying!!  I ask them a "question of the day" and expect a response.  So, I was thinking... (you know what is coming!) I know a lot of us do our long runs on the weekend and some of those runs. are. really. long.  So on Fridays I am going to post a QOTD.  Think about it, discuss it with your running buddies, and post back so I can hear your thoughts. It'll be fun to hear what others are thinking!!  It will be.  Really.  Just play along!

QOTD - You can visit any place in the world for 24 hours.  But once you visit, you can never go back again.  Where do you go?

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Spider Spins His Web of Miles

Yesterday I had a big run- 26.2 miles!  My last long training run.  There is something really fulfilling (and a little craaaaazy) about doing a training run that is equal to a marathon.  No fans holding signs, no aid stations, just me and the road!  Done - check that one off.
But today's story is not about me.  It is on the person (let's call him Spider) with whom I had the privilege of running the last of my miles with.  It was the first time he had run more than 8 miles  - he wanted to get to the magical 10!  I told him once he got to that point there was no turning back - he would always crave that mileage and more.  The run went really well - good pace, great conversation, and the miles quickly accumulated.  I reminded him of a few things as we were ending - rest, refuel, roll, etc.  He reminded me of a few things I sometimes forget!

Determination - mile after mile, hill after hill, nagging knee, cramping calf, he continued on with a fierceness we all should have.  At one point he turned to me and said "If we get back to the car and we have not reached 10 miles, we are going to run until we do!"
Joy - the look on his face as he cruised into the parking lot and extended a hand for a high five was pure elation!
Drive - less than 8 hrs following his run he was already planning out his summer race schedule and on that list was a half-marathon.  His text to me said "I KNOW I can do it!"

Do you remember when you first started running?  The first time running felt great? Your first "runner's high?"  How you felt when you crossed your first finish line?

How do you remind yourself of determination, joy, and drive in your runs??

Thursday, March 21, 2013

An Unexpected PR

I have been waiting for race pics so I could post them with my news. I didn't take pics and the professional pics are not loaded yet. I just can't wait to tell you any longer!! I PRed in a half marathon on Sat and it was totally unexpected! The race I did was Get Lucky in Minneapolis.
These are the reasons that my PR caught me surprise:
* I have been training for a 50k- lots of long slow distances and that means I have not done any speedwork!
* I have issues- as in hamstring- that have nagged me for months, plus I pulled a calf muscle a few weeks ago and I have been leary of running hard on it.
* I have been on a bad eating binge- I love Easter candy!! And the night before the race I joined my coworkers for Happy Hour.
* The course was hilly and icy- miles 7-9 were so slick.  I felt like I was sliding backward more than I was going forward!
* I didn't wear a watch- the only way I had any idea what my pace was would be when I came up on a pacer.
* I didn't start out fast which I have a bad habit of doing and I felt like I ran comfortably for most of the race.

It was not until I saw the clock at the finish line that I knew I could possible PR, but I was not even sure what my best time was. So, I just ran as hard as I could for the last 100 feet! I felt great!! And I felt even greater when I got back to my hotel room and looked up my results. A PR by 8 seconds! And an age group win!! That 1:40:31 was the best run I have had in over 9 months and I'll take it!! That race makes me excited for race season this year!!!  Did I Get Lucky? Maybe. Or maybe a relaxed state of mind is the piece I have been missing!! Something to think about!!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

What Was That?

So the other day I went on a very long training run - all by myself. This was a victory in itself because I always run long runs with friends.  On this day, I just couldn't get my schedule to mesh with anyone else's.  The run went pretty good- the hamstring issue was not too bad and the pace was all right.  Do you get the feeling that it was a mediocre run?  Nothing special, but I am fine with that. Not every run is going to rock!!!  There was one strange thing that happened and left me wondering "What the ...?"  As I was heading into the parking lot (with .001 mile of 24 miles left!!) I felt a twinge in my right calf.  It really did just feel like a twinge so I thought "No big deal."  but as I took the next step I knew it WAS a big deal.  I could not step down!  What happened????  Can anyone answer that for me?  I hobbled back to my car and shed a couple of "poor me tears."  I sat down on the steps next to snowbank and immediately starting icing.  Then I walked up the stairs to the Y and every. step. hurt.  I made it to the Body Pump class and iced some more while I drank the protein smoothie my lovely daughter brought for me.  I have been icing and resting for two days and my calf is about 90% better.  I still don't know what happened and if I don't know what happened how can I prevent it from happening again? I need to know, I need to know more. Any ideas?  Ha ha - that sentence reminded me of this AT & T commercial. These commercials totally make me laugh - I am a teacher, I hear this all the time!!!

Today we have a snow day!!  I spent the day baking and laughing with my oldest daughter.  Right now she is cleaning out another closet - she will do anything to avoid cleaning her room!!!!  I love snow days, but really waiting for spring weather!!!!