As revealed the other day I have been thinking a lot! And my prep post is just the first in a series of posts about some conclusions I have been coming to.
I have been reading a ton of blogs and over the past few years I have trained and become friends with a large variety of people. One of the things I love about running and triathlon is that I can run with someone on any given Sunday that I would otherwise never have cause to appreciate. Be it that they have different politics than me, they have different spiritual views, or they are in a different place in life. We can come together and enjoy each others company because of our love of the sport.
Why do we love the sport? Who cares! No two answers are the same! But we do and we are both driven to get out there and sweat and work towards our individual goals.
In my previous post I stated that:
"I have not finished these races yet. Signing my name on the dotted line means absolutely nothing."
I, like bagel shop friend, am not impressed by empty promises. Give me results! I want to go to places where other people are to scared to go, to hurt in ways you never thought were possible, all for the sake of pushing myself. As Scott quoted "to run where the brave dare not go."
This does not mean I am not impressed by people who set out to go out and do something big. If you don't set goals you certainly won't achieve them.
"Just showing up and finishing is a feat but for me it isn't anything worth congratulation."
For me I cannot just "show up" anymore. I am in too good of shape and I am too driven. I don't want something handed to me, I want to work for it. So yes I could go to JFK in the hopes of just finishing. But I want to strive for a bit more.
There are all types of people in this sport. There are number crunchers, weekend warriors, dreamers. I am a planner. I make a plan, I follow it through, and come race day I try to achieve certain goals. I am super competitive, I realize this is a flaw so I try to apply it in an area of life where it is okay to be competitive, it is even expected, and that is during races.
Because of past experience I usually set realistic but hardy goals. This year that includes the half-IM and an ultra. Next year who knows. Probably some century rides and a few more kick ass marathons. And in a few more years the really big show: Ironman. Because of my running base I personally want to wait on that one. I want to become a better cyclist before tackling IM. And I don't think I will be ready to become a better cyclist until I have exhausted my marathon PRs. Once I plateau a bit then I will move onto bigger and different things.
I could have signed up for JFK last year on a whim after Columbus, I may have even entertained the thought, I thought about signing up for Ironman Florida too. But my brain doesn't let me work that way. For me I want to really be able to do something my way when I do it. And for me I have to "know" that I have taken the previous steps to get somewhere.
Now of course everyone doesn't feel this way. And everyone doesn't have the same background as me. I was blessed with a bit of natural talent and some severe stubbornness that allows me to go out and do what I do usually when I want to do it. Others have it A LOT harder. And let me tell you that I am way more impressed by those TNT athletes that walk a marathon than an elite athlete running sub 2:30s any day. But that is because what they are doing is hard! They had to work their butts off to walk that marathon! (And to tell you the truth I think walking a marathon would be harder than running it.) For some people just finishing is impressive and is a worthy goal.
We all train for different reasons. Some of us train for the "high." Some to lose weight. Some to impress friends. Some to chase down a dream. Some of us don't even know why we train.
Sometimes it is very easy to think that your reasons for doing something are the only valid reasons. Whether you feel that way out of spite, jealousy, concern. Regardless of your reasons you have to let other people do what they are going to do. You just have to sit back and let them achieve or fail in their own goals. You can't hold them back or push them along. It is their own choice.
Regardless of why we all tow the line and sign up for endurance events we are all valid. We all will have triumphs and we all will have failures. What drives me doesn't have to drive you and we don't have to understand why we each do what we do.
On this blog I want to be completely honest about why I behave the way I do and what drives me to get out there. Over time I am sure I will change and I will have different opinions and different reasons for getting out the door. This is my little space where I can look back and see what I have done to get where I am. I hope that if you visit here you can enjoy the ride with me, regardless of what "stroke" you choose.
I have some pretty intense goals this year for my racing season. But realistically the one that is going to take the most mental and physical preparation is the one that no time goal is necessary, the one where just finishing is a feat, and that is the JFK 50 Miler.
In this athletic community (real and virtual) it is very easy to get wrapped into the feel good vibes and think that anything is possible, and anything is possible, if you put in the preparation first. I can't wake up tomorrow and run 26 miles, let alone 50, without a lot of time and effort beforehand.
Some background: (feel free to skip ahead as this isn't the meat of the post, just some filler for those that don't know my background)
I have been running "distance" since 6th grade. Let's face it folks most Americans can't run a quarter mile so really anything more than a block is distance. Like most runners I started small. 6th grade was intramural "cross country." Lucky for me the coach noticed that skinny chick in his homeroom class and decided to inform me I should run. So I did. I remember those first mile races inside our middle school (yes I think it was 2 or 3 laps inside the school for the mile). I was a "natural." I can remember the joy of winning my first "race." And how good it felt to be good at something outside of academics.
7th grade we moved up to actual cross country where races were actually against other schools and were now 2 miles. That year I wasn't so hot. I did decent but I wasn't number one. I was probably 7th on the team. Over the summer I practiced with the high school team and came back for an amazing year. I moved from 7th to first on the team. Placing in most major invintationals. I was on top of my dorky run world.
I was intimidated by the move to 5K in high school but it turned out to also be something I "got." My freshman and sophomore years I did well enough to go to states. I wasn't breaking any records that's for sure but I was good enough to get there. Junior year we had a change in coaching staff and I had bailed on track sophomore year so I struggled a bit. No states for me or the team. Senior year I again did decent, nothing spectacular but did get to go to states as a team. During those years I did 3 years of outdoor track and one season of indoor. A typical track meet for me consisted of the 2 mile, 800 meters, 1 mile, and 4*800. If I was lucky they would let me bag the 800.
I was excited to run cross in college and was looking forward to some exciting new challenges. Unfortunately I didn't have a good career, never once even running top 7 on the team. I think I officially competed in 2 complete seasons. I was out for awhile with a stress fracture. I did indoor track for one season. Good Lord 5K on an indoor track is killer. When coach announced I would be doing 10K in outdoor I bailed. Getting lapped in indoor was bad enough thank you.
Fast forward to 2004. I had been running recreationally (45 minutes 2-3 times a week) since graduating a year before. I was a good 20-30 pounds heavier than I ought to be. That is when I signed up for the Chicago Tri and kick started my adult running career. (I know it sounds odd but I swear that if I had just continued to keep running or had signed up for a marathon first I truly believe I would not be running the splits I am now) After the Chicago tri I decided to give the marathon a shot.
Richmond came and went in 3:39:42 just barely qualifying for the big show in Boston. I put in some serious mileage in the beginning of 2005 and injured my ITB but still got through Boston in 3:49:50 (water stop to water stop). Throw in 2 more Olympic distance tris and Columbus Marathon in October and you're basically caught up on my endurance base.
Back to the Meat:
My background in running has set me up for some awesome possibilities. This year I decided to tackle a half-ironman and the JFK 50 miler. Stepping it up in distance in both tris and running.
To me these are logical steps.
But there are lots of things along the path to these races that can try to stop me or get in the way. Because I have persevered through injuries and being overweight and having bad race conditions before, I am confident that my strong base and a lot of mental prep will have me ready to tow the line. But in order for these races to fall out as planned there is a lot of work ahead of me. I have to be prepared for all the bad as well as the good and I have to be able to overcome.
At the bagel shop a few weeks ago I told a friend that I was definitely going to sign up for JFK this year.
His retort was "So what, you want me to call you an Ultra runner now?" That may sound harsh, but that is the reality. I have not finished these races yet. Signing my name on the dotted line means absolutely nothing. Just showing up and finishing is a feat but for me it isn't anything worth congratulation. I have the base and athleticism that warrants some serious goals. And I wouldn't want it any other way. Why make your debut in a distance if you aren't going to make it an impressive one? Yeah it is cool that I can go out and win age group in local 5ks or sprint tris, but finishing a 50 mile race top in age group where more than a few weekend warriors show up, that is something to aim for. I didn't sign up for these races to take them lightly and I intend to do what I set out do. But until I do it all they are is goals, not reality.
So no patting on the back just yet. There is still a lot of work to be done and a lot of miles to put in.
This is going to be an awesome year!
Friday night I headed straight from work to the CTC meeting. I joined last week in hopes of meeting some new fun triathletes and hopefully finding some more people to train with out on the East side. It has already paid off so I am super excited! The club has over 300 members currently and they have training all over the Cleveland area so I expect good things.
Luckily for me a bunch of other tri-bloggers are in the club so I have some new real life virtual friends. V. Awesome, and a bit surreal! Trisaratops, DaisyDuc, Papa Louie, and Qcmier were all out Friday night.
After a run down on what the club is up to (A LOT!) we were able to shop at discounted prices (I got an awesome Pearl Izumi cap for $11) and then we headed over to BW3s for some wings and beer. Everyone had a good time and I took some pics, I will have to start asking permission to post pics since I don't want to step on any new toes. They will find out soon how much of a camera nut I am.
DaisyDucs husband was a real trooper and even sat with us while we all chatted "tri." I ended up staying a bit too late but I had a great time chatting with everyone. I got to talk with the club prez. One of the gentlemen seemed to think I was the type of gal that gives her husband woes. He kept making me promise to be nice to my husband. He was really fun. I am looking forward to some long bike rides with him!
By the way has anyone heard of a wall street journal article about sex and its affects on our tri performance? This gentleman swears that this very serious article claimed that we all need to stop having sex because it is hindering our performance. Not sure how that falls in line with being a good wife ;)
I love meeting new people. Hopefully I didn't come off as crazy, I really had a great time and am truly looking forward to getting to know everyone better.
I got home much later than planned and decided that I would rather wake up a bit early for my run Saturday than lay stuff out and went straight to bed.
Sat I got up and had to rush around. I still have no idea how I made it to the TNT run in time, I even had to stop for gas. I was under the impression that it was going to be really cold. Turns out that it was 45. Pretty warm. I was unprepared for that but luckily had a short sleeve at least so I didn't fry too much. The pants were a bit warm.
My legs felt super drained Saturday (perhaps beer and wings aren't the best fuel for a long run?) so A and I took it easy. I tried out the walk/run thing with 15-30 second walks at every mile marker. I figure if I am going to walk through water stops at Boston I should practice that in training. Can't hurt right? Even with us taking it easy and the walk bursts we held 9:05 pace. I was glad that we weren't running too much slower as I was already a little peeved about Friday's run. I am not sure why my legs felt like toast, maybe the lack of sleep.
After the run I stopped and got a sub and tried to clean up as best as I could in the restroom, then I made the 2 and a half hour trek out to Toledo to surprise my husband. I was extremely tired on the drive, I had to stop and just rest my eyes and got a frozen coffee drink.
David was playing in a 40K tournament at a gaming convention. There was lots of other gaming going on. Some geeky, others bordering on bizarre. The 40k room seemed to have to most "normal" guys at the conference. Really everyone playing in that tournament seemed pretty down to earth, guys from all different fields, lawyers, business owners etc. I got there in time for the 2nd out of 3 games. David won his first game and somehow got paired up against the guy that ended up with the most "battle points" so he got his ass rocked on that game.
Here is a pic of one of his tanks that got wasted.
He came back and won his third game though so overall he played very well. The scoring for all of the other things seemed to be very subjective. (They get scores on composition, appearance, sportsmanship, and then of course victory points) All of the guys we know got pretty low scores, even ones I thought should have done well (but what do I know?)
My hubby was by far the hottest gamer in the whole place! Evidence below. There weren't many women there but there were actually some attractive girls there (contrary to what I was told to expect).
I had a good time taking pictures of everyone's different models. I restrained myself from making signs and bringing pom poms ;)
Only two awkward interactions with gamers. The guy at the registration desk was a real tool and did not know how to chill at all. In his defense I was trying to get in without paying (I wasn't playing any games so I didn't really want to pay). But David and I went over to check out the different vendors and we tried to be all sly, just walk right in. This guy was having none of it.
"Excuse me! Are you here for BashCon?"
us: "yeah, we are playing in the 40k tournament we were just going to look at vendors for a few minutes"
him "well come on over and I will get you registered"
us: "we already registered, we are playing the 40k tournament"
him: "oh well i need to see your badge"
us: "the tie didn't work very well they are back in the 40k room"
us: "we can go back and get the badge if you like"
him: "yeah you are going to have to do that"
my actual registration followed in the same manner. I was like "Dude" this guy really needs a different job. Not very good friendly social skills.
So we walked around. They had some pretty funny gaming shirts. (Warning the next image isn't PG)
Would have got this one for David but he wouldn't be able to wear it to work so kind of pointless.
After we checked out the vendors we walked around and checked out what games people were playing. A lot of the company's test out their new games at conventions like this so you can sit in on new games. Kind of neat. We are almost out of there and this guy starts waving at us. "Hello! Hello!"
I am like "do you know that guy" I swear he acted just like we were old college friends or something.
Well he calls us over and proceeds to tell us in detail about the game he is playing and what conventions he will be at playing that game and that the artist is over in the vendor booths and you can buy a start up kit at that booth, and it comes with everything you need...you get the point.
It was painful. We couldn't escape. We were like seriously dude we need to get back to our tournament. (Slowly take a step away from the freak) We managed to escape just as he was bringing in back up. It was a close call.
We didn't get out of the convention until pretty late and headed to Perrysburg for dinner. I was flagging seriously. I didn't know how I was going to make it through dinner let alone the 2 hour drive home. I decided to just stay the night in Perrysburg and drive straight to the indoor tri this morning. I didn't have any of my stuff with so I just hung out and cheered/took pictures.
Papa Louie and B2 ROCKED the run. Holy Crap! These guys were pulling out 5:30-5:40s on the dread for 20 minutes. It was impressive! There was a young high school swimmer who rocked the swim with 59 lengths, also pretty damn impressive but she needs to learn not to talk so much smack beforehand. I guess I remember doing that in high school, trying to psyche out other runners. But I think in tri's you kind of have to put your money where your mouth is.
I got my CTC t-shirt which is suhweet! It was a fun event. The rec center was pretty impressive. Nice pool and large spinning area and lots of dreads and an indoor track.
Stopped by David's work and said hello on the way home. Our neighbors were out when I got home so I talked with them for awhile and when David got home we pretty much just crashed. I was absolutely exhausted. I think I could have slept till morning. But I dragged myself out of my bed (also known as the black hole) just to type up this blog ;)
So no indoor tri or workout of any sort for me today. Label me as a big Sunday Slacker.
Hopefully my toasted legs are enjoying the break! I have some input on some pools on the East Side so I am hoping to get on track with my Steelhead pre-base training this week. Speaking of track I am going to the track on Tuesday baby! I am SO excited!
Hopefully you can expect some posts that aren't just run downs on daily occurrences in the next few weeks. I have been doing TONS of thinking (be afraid, be very afraid!)
I realized as I went to post that I hadn't yet google mapped my route and logged my run so I just took care of that. I was expecting at least a 6 mile run, not so fast young grasshopper. Only 5.677, Boo!
Well whatever I say to that, I have now sworn off google pedometer, until tomorrow.
I have a tendency of thinking I am going much faster on my local runs than I really am. I guess there is something to be said for group runs because I usually average much faster paces when out with a crowd. Maybe running on sidewalks has something to do with this slower pace? Who knows.
This whole post has taken a completely different turn than I expected and now I am just lost.
So I ran this morning. Out comfortable and tempo back. I negative split by 1:30 per mile on the way back, so thats cool. I incorporated the local streets by the lake so this really was a run of all flavors including streets, sidewalk, gravel path, trail, and beach!
I showered and headed in to work. There must have been a serious accident on 90 because we were crawling. Finally I got fed up and exited the highway via an on ramp (in my defense other people were doing it to). I was a little worried about finding my way. I have a history of impatient highway exits that are followed by hours of being lost in ghettos, usually in major snow storms. But I found my way easily today. And as an added bonus I got to check out the route that I am planning on using to commute on my bike with once warmer weather hits! It should be wickedly sweet (stealing from SimplyStu). Traffic wasn't too heavy even with the mass highway exodus. And there are lots of lovely mansions along the lake to distract me from any cycling woes. I cannot wait to get outside on my bike!
On tap this weekend is a TNT run and an indoor tri! Also looking forward to meeting some new peeps at the CTC meeting tonight!
Sunday morning woke up bright and early to get to the SERC run. I had found out at the party that B was also running 16 so we had planned to do the 15 mile loop and add on a 1/2 mile out and back to get in our 16 while also tackling some Boston appropriate hills. A and DaisyDuc were planning on coming and running 8 so we had a small group of ladies out in extremely chilly weather. Weather.com claimed that it felt like -9 out but I think with the sun it felt warmer because I was a wee bit overdressed. I was extremely grateful for the balaclava that B let me borrow though because it was windy. The first 6 miles were pretty uneventful. We got to the water stop and there was no water, phooey! I guess it was too cold.
A and DaisyDuc turned off to finish out their 8 and B and I continued on. We stopped at a church to get some water and take our gels. Just after A and Daisy turned off the knee did the twinge again, grrr. I told B about it. She recommended doing knee strengthening exercises for the next few weeks, and of course icing. We decided we were going to take it easy up the hill just in case. HAH, surprise surprise there would be no attempts at tackling the hill that day anyways. Once we got off the main road onto the parkway it was like we entered winter wonderland. They had not plowed or salted at all. We pretty much just had to trudge up the hill. Once we got to the top we decided to bail on our plans to do the 15 loop because that would have been a lot more of the parkway and snow trudging. So we headed back to the bagel shop along the 12 and then did 2 miles out and back to finish up the 16. Google pedometer says it was 15.75 so we were averaging around 8:45-8:55 pace even with the slow hill.
Around mile 6 I noticed my ankle was a bit sore. I have no clue what I did to it, but it is still sore today, it is getting increasingly less painful though. I have been continuing to ice and have paid attention to it while walking and during workouts.
Last night I decided to brave the trainer even though I haven't received the replacement part yet. I wore my helmet just in case the bike did indeed come out of the trainer. That didn't turn out to be an issue. I did the first 50 minutes of the mental toughness spinerval. Let me tell you Coach Troy sucks! He is MEAN! No wonder I suck on the bike, I don't EVER push that hard! If I could I would just spin all day long :)
But I am glad I did the workout and I will be working up to the full 90 minutes soon. (Or it might have to wait till next winter if the weather warms up before my long rides start)
This morning David and I went out for a short wog before work, just 1.5 miles.
Tonight I need to get in a tempo run but that may have to get pushed to tomorrow. Last weekend was so full that I didn't get anything done around the house so laundry and dishes are piled a mile high.
I am currently without pool and pre Steelhead base prep started this week so I need to get on that. I am trying to get A to share her pass to Mayfield but I may end up over at CSU. $5 a drop in sounds reasonable to me. (plus $40 annually for master membership)
So my major goal for the year is to try and find some balance that works for me and those around me.
Sorry just had to get that out there in the open.
Back to this weekend.
Friday night I headed to a fundraising party for LLS. (After driving home and grabbing everything I would need for Saturday's race) I had a good time hanging out at the fundraiser and chowing down on all kinds of foods that were counter productive to the next days task at hand (The Chili Bowl 5k).
I have met so many lovely people in TNT and one of my fave friends from TNT offered up her guest room to me for the night so I wouldn't have to travel back and forth to the west side on both Friday and Saturday. It was very nice to know that I would only have a 5-10 minute drive to the race in the morning as opposed to 45. KR and I chatted into the wee hours of the morning (I think I finally hit the hay around 1 AM). It has been a long time since I have just stayed up and had girlie chat time. It was really nice. I forgot how much I missed my "bitch fests" from college. :)
KR and her family are SO much fun! When I headed to bed I found a chocolate on my pillow. I felt like I was at a Bed and Breakfast!
The next morning I actually woke up early (around 7) and had time to eat a bagel and have half a cup of coffee. I chatted with KR and her kids until it was time to get dressed and head to the race. If you missed the race reports from Su, DaisyDuc, and Trisaratops let me just tell you it was about 6 degrees out Saturday! That's even a little cold for my tastes and yes I did wear fleece pants as opposed to my regular race shorts. I went through a few outfit changes before deciding on my heavier technical long sleeve and a wind shirt, gloves, and two ear headbands. I think I did take off the gloves towards the end of the race (my hands are always warm).
I thought I left myself plenty of time for a long warm up but when I got into the race registration I realized I was quite wrong, the line for pre-reg was out the door (I am not even exaggerating!). So between running over there and back to my car and a short warm up I think I got about 15 minutes in. Right as I was finishing the warm up to the start line I felt a weird twinge on the lower front of my knee (thought that's odd, never had that before). No time to worry about it as they were telling everyone to line up.
J and A called me over and we did the quick "What's your race plan" chat and got ready to start. Good lucks to Su, J, and A and we were off. I decided to try and hang with J. She's a speedster but like me hadn't been doing any speedwork lately. I felt like we were going 6:30 and sure enough we crossed the 1 mile around 6:36, prob a little too fast for the first mile.
The knee was "twinging" on and off every few minutes, but no lingering pain, a short twinge then gone. I hung with J up through the 2 mile and then let her inch ahead of me. That 2nd mile feels like it takes FOREVER! I felt the exact same way last year at this race. Looking down at your watch you expect that the mile is almost up and realize you are just past the half, grrr.
There is a short out and back around 2.5, I tried to close in on J here but my brain leg combo would have none of it. So I just tried to hold the gap and finish strong. At mile 3 this 19 year old sand bagger comes flying by. Nothing I could do, J was about 6 seconds in front of me and this girl went flying by her too. Sucks but oh well. I need to learn how to run the shorter races like this, I want to be a sand bagger ;)
Afterwards the knee didn't act up, still not pleased about it though because it was on the front. I have never had knee problems so it is worrisome.
I am happy with the race. It would have been nice to break 21 but considering conditions and the top girls time (20:12) I can't really have expected more out of myself.
After finishing we stood around and watched some other finishers come in. A and Su kicked some serious booty. HUGE shout out to Su for PRing by a minute! Kick Ass! And big thanks to B2 for taking pics of us in the cold (although its only because he's a serious WWP (for those of you that read Bolder this is my rip off of SLP but mine stands for warm weather)) Also had a few other TNT peeps that came out in the cold to compete, congrats to E, G, and R!
About then the cold kicked in and we headed inside for some Chili and sat around chatting waiting for awards. We are chilling on the floor when Su starts screaming "Sara, Sara" I am like do you know that girl? Then I look closer and Su says, that's Trisaratops, and sure enough it was! So we got to meet Trisaratops and DaisyDuc. Pretty suhweet. DaisyDuc PRed too! And she joined my running club so now we have another speedster chick to join us on Sundays! Can't wait to introduce her to "the hill."
(Sorry for the continuous post but the OCD in me can't just break the story up into multiple posts, I have had issues with the way blogs are "ordered" since I first signed up for Tblog in 2004, I mean when you read a book you read top to bottom, but if you read a blog top to bottom you are going backwards, anyways I digress)
After awards and some chit chat Su and I headed over to KR's place to get in a hot shower. We had some coffee and colored with MR. I am really anal about staying within the lines so when MR helped me with my picture I had to stop myself from flinching, the agony of wondering whether she would remain within the lines was torturous :) She was probably thinking my goodness Elizabeth is a slow colorer, at this rate we won't have any time for hide and seek :)
After coloring MR and I played monopoly. It was a close game but MR ended up low on cash and I came out victorious. The kids version of this game is interesting because if you land on a property you have to buy it. So you can actually end up going broke against your will.
We played some hide and seek and then it was time for some gaming action. JR and I played some Mario Kart and some snowboarding game. I wasn't very good at the snowboarding but I gave JR a run for his money on Mario Kart. I felt a little bad, I probably should have warned him that I am pretty good at that game. He made up for his losses in snowboarding though.
I totally forgot I had planned on going into work on Sat for a few hours and ended up having to head straight home to get ready for Ds 40th b-day party. I had a blast with KR and her family. Can't wait to do it again.
Hubby and I got around and headed over to G's place for the partay. I indulged in some wine, jello shots, and beer. Needless to say I was having a good time. I am loud normally but you give me a few drinks and a party I get Real loud, yikes! But hopefully no one minded. We danced and I got to catch up with A. I hadn't seen her since I left for Arizona, what the heck happened to my training partner? But I think she will be back on track now and hopefully I will be seeing more of her. We left semi-early but we were up pretty late, esp considering I had a 16 miler planned for the next morning.
to be continued again...
I usually try to get 300+ miles out of my shoes. But this pair of Mizuno's seems to have met its match around 250. I was told they might not last as long as other shoes. My last pair of saucony's I ran 300+ in until I got injured. Lets hope next time I trade shoes pre injury instead of post!
Tonight I got to the group run in time for an extra 2 mile loop beforehand with Su, B, and B2. We went a little quick for my tastes, 2nd loop slowed it down a wee bit with Su. 3rd and 4th we did a different routine than usual. We ran up the front 1/2 mile and back then up the back 1/2 mile and back, allowing ourselves to run up and down the monster hills. We hammered the hills and the boys took it easy off the hills while I was running slightly slower than tempo pace in order to keep up with them.
2 mile Splits:
Off to eat dinner! Hopefully a post on this weekend activities and a race run down will follow soon!
I am pretty beat and I have a lot to write but it isn't going to happen tonight.
But the ocd in me has to tell everyone that I ran 16 miles yesterday and I wogged 2 miles tonight with my husband. My right knee is feeling a little funky and my left ankle hurts pretty bad. This does not make me a happy camper. This time last year is when my ITB flared up. I was really excited to be at Chili Bowl this year sans injuries. Of course then just as I ended my warm up I felt the "twinge" in my right knee. Grrr.
I am icing and calling it quits on my old Mizuno's in hopes that it is just a combo of the old shoes and running in snow that have caused these aches and pains. We shall have to wait and see how tomorrows group run goes.
Last night hubby and I did a 2 mile wog to the video store and back. It was incredibly windy out! I am v. impressed with how quickly my husband is progressing. I really didn't expect him to take to the jog part of our wogs so i was very proud that he jogged so much last night.
Today has blown by. Very busy at work. Add to that some stinking thief walked into our office while we were all here and managed to get in and out with a lap top without us noticing. More than a little bit frustrating. Some people just suck!
This weekend is going to be a blur. Hopefully I will be updating you on all the excitement soon.
But first (Ala Steven) last nights workout.
So even though I ate a regular 5-way chili and half the cheese fries I did manage to get in a run. It was super late but I just sucked it up and went out into the night. I had intentions of doing a track workout so my husband and I hopped in the car and headed over to the high school track. Well they have that place on serious lock down, so I guess I won't be doing any local track workouts in our new hood.
So that drive was a waste and we headed back to the house. I decided to get in a fartlek workout around the neighborhood. I didn't want to go too far because it was really late and I am in general not trusting of people out and about that late at night. So I stayed within a few miles of our place. I ran out several blocks then did hard up each street and easy back down each one until I got back to our place. Ended up being 8 sets of hard/easy (approximately 2:20/2:50, I added the main street curb to the next street as hard so that I wouldn't be spending quite as much time on the easy). Total mileage 5.8ish average pace 8:49.
When I started the run I noticed the skyline and thought to myself, when I was young that would have really bothered me, but I am older and tougher now and that is one of the major differences between me and that young runner, assuming that it wouldn't bother me much longer. Well it didn't hurt the run, but it definitely didn't help it. It was noticeable the whole way.
I felt good and I was loving the new shoes. The 3rd and 4th fartleks I felt stronger than the ones before so that is good. I am guessing each hard stretch was about .31 miles and each easy was about .27 give or take.
Now as you already know I went on a small shopping spree last weekend. Well our dryer has been on the fritz. My husband finally tried to fix it for me and replaced the igniter. The ex-owner said he had to replace that a few times and that was probably our problem, since the drum was running, we just weren't getting any heat. Well David calls me after picking up the part and replacing it to inform me that he replaced the part and turned the dryer on and that sparks came flying out and now the dryer won't work at all. (I know I said exploding appliances, well my husband said sparks, I heard exploding, you know how that goes)
So last night we decided to go dryer shopping. Before going I wanted to be sure this wasn't a problem we could fix easily ourselves. I did some Internet research and checked it out. Well David had blown a fuse when the dryer sparked so I flipped the breaker and the drum was working again. I turned the dryer off and on a few times and then I also got the spark effect. A little scary considering it is a gas dryer. (Light bulb went on at this point and I turned the gas line to the dryer off) The coils weren't lighting up at all except for that spark I got. I am not extremely handy so I gave up. We knew we wanted a new dryer soon anyways; we were just living with the current one because it came with the house.
So we met up at Sears and picked out a new Kenmore dryer. Nothing fancy, but it has a moisture sensor and a 7.0 cu ft drum. Plus they are going to install it with a new gas line and venting and haul away our old one. Pretty sweet.
After purchasing the dryer we headed over to Second Sole where I picked up my new Wave Riders and my husband got some running shoes to start working out with me. He stuck with Saucony. They look pretty sweet too, but not as cool as mine ;)
By the way I am only so excited about these shoes because normally I never worry about shoe style. I get what fits and what feels good and usually they aren't cute at all. So I am super geeked that these new shoes actually look a bit trendy and they go with all my red Boston gear! Score!
My husband and I are going to start walk/jogging together at least 3 times a week. This is a good way to spend some quality time and also keep in shape. I have made the decision that this is more important than my training and if I can't squeeze in both this will be my priority. I am trying to find some balance between my old psychotic workout schedule and a new one that will leave me more time for my other fave activities and my fave people.
Next on tap all about my other geeky hobbies I partook in last weekend!
Last night after our wog I headed out for a quick tempo run. 1.5 miles 7:02 pace.
Looks like Chili-Bowl may get interesting. I was hoping for under 7 pace and I have some stiff competition coming (all my friends) so I will have to try and keep my ego in check.
I think I have some sort of sleep disorder. I cannot seem to get by on less than 8 hours and most nights my body wants more than that, we are talking in excess of 10 hours. So I am just going to have to bite the bullet and get up when the alarm goes off or pay the price by having to do long runs in the dark. Now I remember how all last years Boston miles got logged. Late night runs around Richmond Heights in the freezing cold. Oh yeah, thats why I said I would never train for Boston again unless I moved somewhere warm. How easily we forget.
Maybe more coffee is the key ;)
I believe the most votes were to hear about what shall now be known forever as the panty man-handling incident.
Saturday we loaded up the hatchback and headed down to Canton so the boys could get their 40K game on. I decided it would be a good excuse for me to go shopping and stock up on some necessities since D lives right by a huge mall and a bunch of strip malls. A came down to go with me. I must confess that shopping was a lot more fun when I was young and spending my parents money rather than my own. Oh and when whatever you put on fit and looked good. Don't get me wrong though I had plenty of money to splurge so I didn't feel guilty spending it.
We hit up TJ Max first. I proceeded to try on about 12 pairs of jeans before settling on two pairs which I, of course after wearing for two days, have now decided didn't fit quite as well as I thought they did in the store. C'est la vie. I did get an underarmour tee for $12 which will come in handy. I should have known that this day was going to be a test of my shopping patience because we were in a line with one person ahead of us, the clerk had to go to the back of the store, so we moved to the next lane, where after we had waited behind that person the clerk there informed us she was closing and we needed to go to the service desk. We waited another 5 or so minutes for one of the two service desk clerks to finish with their shoppers when the first goes off on break and the girl that had told us she was closing announces that she can help us now at the service desk. Grrr. But that was only a glimpse of what was to come next.
After TJ Max we headed to Kohls. I love Kohls. Every two years or so I go and I spend $200 replenishing my wardrobe at Kohls. Well I will NEVER be going to the Kohls in Canton again!
I had intentions of stocking up on "intimates" while at Kohl's so we headed straight to that department. I refuse to pay tons of money for comfortable panties so I head to the clearance bin which announces 3 for $7.50, score! So I pick out some intimates and head on my way to stock up on socks and other boring intimates. We check out the shoe section but don't find anything. I find a sweater for $7 which is comfortable and looks good so we head to check out.
Right as we walk up a register opens. It is a man and he waves me over. I tell him no thanks and tell A she can go first, since I really would prefer for a woman to check me out as I have intimates on board. Well he insists that I come to his register. Ugggh. So I suck it up and place my mound of panties on the counter. He starts ringing everything out. I believe he was also a little flustered by the whole ringing out of my intimates, which may have been the reason for the chaos that was soon to ensue.
He finishes ringing me out and announces my total. Like I have mentioned before I usually spend about $200 on my Kohls trips so I didn't flinch when he asked me to cough up $140. I just dished it out, then after handing it over I thought, $140 for some intimates and socks? that doesn't sound right, I am not Jessica Simpson folks.
So I ask him if I can review the receipt. He rings out A with no issue as I figure out why my panties are costing a fortune. Well it turns out he was charging me full price for the 3 for $7.50 intimates. I explain the problem to him and he calls intimates section on the phone to ask if there are indeed any panties marked 3 for 7.50. I am told that it was an early bird special and that they must have forgotten to take down the sign. So he needs to re-ring everything for me. (Which I still don't grasp) Well he and another clerk start trying to fix my problem. I ask for a calculator and calculate that they owe me $36 back. Very simple math actually. Well this man insists on pulling out all my items and again scanning all of my intimates (By now I am extremely perturbed that my panties are being touched by gross register man for what feels like the umpteenth time, and I am contemplating vomiting) He scans them all through with the help of the other clerk and comes up with a new (wrong) total. I explain that the math they did was not correct and that they owe me more back than what they have shown.
So the lady takes over. She asks me to hand her back my change then she refunds me the $140 I gave them in the first place. Then she starts all over. This time she almost gets it right (I didn't realize until I got home that she did indeed still short me $1.50) but to make up for my inconvenience she gives me an additional 10% off. Which was nice but now I have to burn all of my panties to make sure that no gross register man germs are on them so I am still calling it a loss.
Oh and don't forget that this whole time (about 30 minutes, no I am NOT exaggerating) people keep getting in line behind us to watch my panties being man-handled and A keeps informing them they should go to another line, of course then they all look real close at what I am buying before heading to another register. So pretty much everyone who was shopping at the Canton Kohl's now knows my taste in undergarments, splendid.
Add to that the fact that I couldn't find any shoes in my size other than some really uncomfortable rain boots and some extremely too tall heels it was a frustrating day in the world of shopping. Oh and did I mention all of this took us over 5 hours?
Thank goodness for A. I probably would have come home empty handed if it weren't for the good company. To end the day on a positive note we went to one of my fave stores Pier 1 and A got me a much needed wicker waste basket! Hurrah for all things wicker!
Exploding appliances are next on the queue.
Cool Picture Board C made for us. It is hanging in the guest bath now. Pics of the decorating I did this weekend to come when I get a chance to take them.
Trying on jeans at T-J Max. Why do all jean makers assume that skinny freaks like me are 10 feet tall? Those jeans fit perfectly, other than the excess inches of leg.
Because you couldn't just smile you are getting posted to the internet D! I expect full retaliation on your blog ;)
I think I have adult ADD, I just cannot seem to focus in on my goals outside of work the past few weeks. At least I am accomplishing something at my job, otherwise I might feel like a total loss.
I cannot even seem to sit down and write a coherent blog, my mind is all over the place. My camera is not at arms length or I would just post some pictures. That would be much less taxing.
I don't think I am the only one feeling this way so I am going to chalk it up to it being winter and it actually being cold and snowy out.
For now here is a list of what I should probably blog about.
1) The panty man-handling incident
2) Ultimate exhaustion and the endless sleep
3) Elizabeth the alcoholic chez geek troll
4) Interior Decorating for Idiot's
5) Explosive Appliances
Vote for your favorite and that's where I will start.
On a running note I ran for 40 minutes last night in the dark windy city of Euclid. It was pretty uneventful, but I did run by the lakefront and damn there are some killer houses just down the street from us. We are talking mansions people. Mansions on the lake! In Euclid, who knew? The good thing about last nights run is that I got off the main road (which is well-lit, but busy) and the sidewalks onto some side streets where I was able to run on the street. Much easier on my body.
So I don't usually agree with "keeping up with the joneses" but I think there is one situation where more people need to impress their neighbors. And that is in shoveling your sidewalk! I mean it. Get out there and be the first to shovel. You don't want to look lazy do you? And seriously do you want to get sued by a runner who slips and falls and breaks their neck because you were too lazy to shovel? Sorry I was just a little irritated about all the people that neglected to shovel Wednesday night. It was just fluff on Wednesday, all you had to do was push the snow to the side with your shovel, seriously. But now it is a big lumpy icy mess, which is not fun to run through. Kind of like trail running, but without the beautiful scenery, and less predictable footing. Point being I am extremely excited that I found the side roads in our neighborhood to be well enough lit and safe enough to run on the streets at night. Oh and I ran by the monkey wall paper house last night, still for sale.
So I didn't learn about 40k last night. Instead we watched my hubby's fave movie. Major League :) That movie is absolutely hilarious. Although it is a little sad that my husband knows the whole movie line by line, without even watching, he was painting during the first half and still was rattling off lines.
Looking forward to this weekend. I am hoping to get in another short easy run tonight and a run on Saturday and Sunday. Everyone have a great weekend!
So don't laugh, but this week is Spouse Camp! That's right! Goals are to spend more quality time with my husband. Without this man who knows where my flighty self would get off to. He is my rock!
So far this week spouse camp has been great. And as a bonus I have still gotten in a few workouts ;) Tonight I think I am ditching Master Swim Class. Getting home at 10:30 PM is just ridiculous. I am opting instead for just a run around the neighborhood. Hals plan is for mostly easy runs this week so that shouldn't be too difficult.
Last night I was quite the domestic diva! I managed to shovel the drive, clean dishes, and start dinner all before my husband got home! And on top of that while making dinner my husband and I got to be romantic and dance in our living room. (Which is Perfect for dancing mind you, have I mentioned I love living in our new house, and I especially love my wood floors!) We played with the kitties and chatted while David helped my sis with her German paper via AIM. Then we just spent some quality "us" time.
After all that I still managed to wake up this morning and make breakfast :) I am quite pleased with myself. Tonight I might actually let my husband teach me how to participate in his fave hobby, gasp, that's right folks I am going to get introduced to the dark side, 40k! The plan for Saturday is to go down to Canton with the boys who will be playing 40k all day long. I plan on spoiling myself with some much needed new clothes so I will be going shopping, but will probably have to play at least one game with the guys. I have been promised a fridge full of my favorite beer in return! Looking forward to having R in. I need to make sure to open the baffle to let some warm air into the guest room for him! Tonight I would also like to tackle hanging some more photos etc. It is definitely time to make the place more "ours."
Another dimension of spouse camp is trying to coordinate our schedules. Swim Camp made it very clear that my waking up at 4:45 and going to bed at 9 will not work in this family. I hardly got to see David at all. My husband works 10-6 most days and is a night owl. He is usually up well past 11 and doesn't have to wake until 9 to get to work on time. So we have agreed to meet in the middle. Going to bed between 10:30 and 11:30 in order to have some quality time in the morning together before we leave for work. Hopefully this will work out for us and still allow me to get to most of my group activities.
I decided to spare Mon another Bono song and opted for a less celebrated Grammy category for today's video. Don't worry Mon, no need to thank me ;)
*Edit* You can view the U2 marathon over at Bolder's place!
I got in my regular Tuesday run and also made it to master swim class. My arms felt like complete lead! The run was pretty much uneventful other than falling in the last half mile. It was a bit slippery out tonight. Did 5 hill repeats with one down hill hard. Gotta get ready for Bostons downhills! The last uphill I swear I felt my heart jump out of my body which probably explains the arms of lead in the pool.
Thanks for everyones dreadmill advice and well wishes! Things seem to be looking up in my mental health department and despite being a bit tired tonight I think training and life are getting back on track.
Run: Total 5.5 miles
loop 1 17:55 (2 miles)
hills up 1:04.32, 1:01.68, 59.88, 1:01.18, 57.25
hills down 1:21.62, 1:26.39, 56.39, 1:33.36
Swim: Total 3100 yards in about an hour and 10 minutes
250(50 back, 50 free)
200 (100 side kick, 100 back kick)
150 (50 fr, 50 1 arm, 50 free)
6*75 at 1:15
6*100 at 1:40
3*125 at 2:00
25 easy breast
350 (50 kick, fist, kick, 1 arm, kick, fist, kick)
16*25 on 0:30
1 easy, 3 sprint
2 easy, 2 sprint
3 easy, 1 sprint
Regardless I am feeling a bit better now and hopefully will be back on track with training this week. I did manage to get my 14 miler in yesterday. I didn't get out to the group run. I ended up running by myself at E.C.R. with my mp3 player in the snow and wind. It was a decent run even though the trail is only 2.5 miles so it was a lot of out and back. I did get hills in since the reservation is basically 2.5 uphill one way. I did the yoga poses from this months Runners World Saturday night and Sunday before my run. I think that helped to center me a bit. I definitely have lost some flexibility since high school. So I think I will try to incorporate those as my "stretch" routine from now on.
In light of me not wanting to face the world sometimes and that my husband wants to start a fitness routine we are going to get a dreadmill. This way if I have a hard time getting out the door (or the weather doesn't allow for an outdoor run) I can still get in my run, and my husband can walk/jog on the dreadmill while I spin on the trainer. (The reason I haven't been on the bike the past few weeks is that Nashbar sent out a "recall" of sorts and I am waiting for them to send a part. Apparently some of the models have a part that may give out causing the bike to detach from the trainer.)
Now the question is what dreadmill should we purchase? We are on a budget. I really would like to spend between $400-800. But I also would rather spend a bit more and get something of quality that will fulfill both of our needs, rather than low ball and get something that I won't run on. So for all you dreadmill owners out there what do you recommend? What do you have, what do you like about it, dislike? (Zeke I know you did major research on this!)
Had a good time at the party last night. Watched video from Chicago. Wow I really am obnoxious. I don't know how anyone can stand my voice!!! But it was all in good fun and maybe CK will get me a copy of the vid so I can put embarassing footage up here and you can all really peek into the life that is Elizabeth.
Morning has not gone as planned so far. Took me an hour to post the Rowdy photo because Blogger is being ghetto. I finally uploaded the pics to Flickr and posted them that way. So if 6 dozen posts of my cats and duplicate comments come up later it is Bloggers fault. I tried to leave comments for Bold and Elle this morning and that also didn't work. Grrr.
On top of that my friend who was supposed to run with me bailed, claiming a fear of the rain. So I will be running by my bad self, and perhaps on a dreadmill. Yikes! Winter weather warning goes into effect at 7pm tonight for Cleveland. We shall see how that forces the weekend to play out.
(by the way I should have mentioned that looking at my "biceps" is not much different than looking at pocket lint, seriously I have NO definition) LOL
So as always I am staying flexible. Instead of a rest from swimming tomorrow I will do the Friday swim while my husband shops for the b-day party we are going to. Before that we are going to meet A at the towpath and I am going to get in a 7 mile pace run. Hubby is planning on walk/jogging. I am excited that he actually wants to go with us so to celebrate we will be going to the running shop beforehand and buying both of us new running shoes.
Sunday I will try to stick to the training plan. Higdon is calling for a 14 mile easy run and this week I need to follow that and bloglands advice and actually run that 14 miles easy. What is likely to happen is that I will run the 15 mile course which will hopefully force me to take it easy. Lots and Lots of Big Hills! Most of the girls avoid the 15 loop and instead do the 10 or 12 and add on an out and back to finish up their mileage. Even worse than the 15 is the 20. I can't wait till I have 2 of those under my belt this winter :) Call me crazy but I LOVE running tough courses!
After the run I will head over to Peak and do the last Swim Camp workout which will include 500 and 100 yard time trials. And I Will put forth a time trial effort. No slacking!
Also on tap this weekend is a party with my 2005 Chi-Tri peeps. Should be a lot of fun. I plan on documenting with lots of photos. Tomorrow we have a b-day party and a fundraising party. Sunday I need to finish filing our local taxes, and get back on track with the dishes and keeping the house clean.
Master swim class was fine. I survived 3100 yards in an hour and 10 minutes. The sets are difficult to explain so you will have to deal with my crazy short hand until I can catch my breath and explain. I rode for 20 minutes on a stationary bike before hand. It said my average speed was 8.5 mph. WTF? No seriously WTF? There is NO WAY I am that freaking slow! They apparently won't let you spin on their nice spinning bikes unless there is a class. That really clinches the decision not to get a membership there. I mean pay $54 bucks a month and I can't even use the spin bikes? And I have to ride a crappy stationary bike that tells me my average speed on gear M-5 is 8.5 mph??? Screw that!
And to all a good night!
20 minute "spin" on "Bike Max" or something like that
Master Swim: 3100 yards in 70 minutes
2* 200 free, 100 back, 100 kick
200 free, 100 back
8*50 kick on 1:15 send off 4 on side, 4 on back
4*75 (50 one arm, 25 free on 2:00: 3*50 sprint, 25 free on 1:15)
8*50 (25 drill, 25 free: 3* 25 sprint, 25 easy)
4*75 (50 arnie drill, 25 free on 2:00: 3*50 sprint, 25 free on 1:15)
4*125 on 2:15 fist drill lengths 1 then 2 then 3 then 4
So woke up this morning with a swollen throat. I think this lack of sleep thing is getting to my immune system. (Did I mention I am NOT a morning person?)
So I decided to build it back up with a good breakfast. Waffles coffee and some OJ!
I will be back on track by tonight at Master Swim Class! Albeit minus one swim camp workout.