Saturday, October 31, 2009

Race Report: Monster Dash 8k

I ran a race today. Did I mention that before? Probably not because I didn't intend to really 'race' it, but once I got there - well, you all know what's up. Pre-Race Since I didn't intend to race this I wasn't really too into race prep. I didn't wear my racing flats, I wore brand new shorts that I took the tag of that morning, and I didn't really take my usual pre-race routine before I left the house very seriously. The race was local. Very local. As in the start was literally right in front of the running store that my running group runs out of. I left the house 40 minutes before the race start. Got to the running store, said my hellos, shot the shit for a few minutes the headed out for my warm up. I did a short run, a few plyos and a couple of strides. Just over a mile. Then I was off to the start. Race So once the race started I got sucked in. I knew right away I was totally racing this for the best PR I could get. I ran the first half just under a 9:00 pace. At the turn around I was starting to fade but I didn't want to hit the wall so I slowed down a bit. Then when we had just passed the 1 mile mark guess what happened. A cop stopped the runners to let cars pass through an intersection. WHAT?! Oh, I was soooo mad. I was totally going to bust that last mile like I never ran a mile repeat in my life and boy was I pissed when I had to stop like that. Grrrrr. I totally understand that cars needed to go...blah, blah, blah, and if I weren't an athlete I probably wouldn't have understood...ONE FREAKN` DAY! One day. UGh. So anyways, that kind of pissed me off but I still finished strong. I got to the home stretch which was about an 800 meter dash around a corner and kicked it up about 20 notches. I totally chicked one poor bastard and then another. The second guy I heard literally sprinting after me and I was like, "Hell NO" and really let it rip. He didn't pass me and it was one of the best finishes of my life because of it :)! Post race Since it was such a small event (wasn't even chip timed) I just hung out at the running store with some of my fellow peers. Despite the forced stop at the last mile, I loved this race. I'm disappointed a bit because I hit the lap button on my garmin after we stopped at the intersection (when I realized it was going to be more than a quick minute at least) plus after my crazy ass sprint finish I forgot to stop my watch directly after so my splits are inaccurate, but this is my best guess 8k time. 45:00 minutes (conservative, rounded up estimate) 9:03 av pace/169 bpm (based on 45 minute finish time) That's an 11 minute PR!!!! Ok, granted the one and only other 8k I've ever run I was still a little drunk from drinking boxed wine the night before (yeah, not my proudest moment), but still. Yay!! I'm totally cool with that because I wasn't training for it, and more importantly, I was less than one month out from running a marathon.
In other news I got my training plan for November. Project Suck IT: The Sequel is on!! Also, since almost all of you reprimanded me for 'quitting' the wine (actually, it was more like detoxing) you'll be happy to know I'm celebrating tonight. Wine and ice cream bars all around!! Happy Halloween!!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

.....annnnd I'm back

Well, almost. I haven't had wine or ice cream bars in like four days. More importantly, I haven't craved wine or ice cream bars in four days. Yay! I think I'm off the addiction. Also, I set up my weekly workouts for the next couple of months and will start up again with the running coach November 1. And I'm excited about it!!! Lastly, I had a swim today which I missed, which is not good. However, I do feel guilty about it so that's a good sign! (for those of you who refuse to feel guilty about missing workouts - spare me. Right now I need to feel guilty.) By the end of the week, I'll be a lean mean workout machine again....and I actually can't wait!! Plus my hubby leaves in a week or so and for those of you who have been following me long enough know that means I have nothing better to do with my time than workout and blog. Lucky you :) Happy Monday.

Friday, October 23, 2009


I haven't really gotten back my motivation to workout. I've been lazy. Really lazy. Still drinking lots of wine and eating even more ice cream bars. I can't help myself. I've only run a couple of times, swam once, and rode the bike once. Pretty lame. I keep negotiating with myself: after today, after this weekend, one more know the drill. Your all my witnesses, I'm giving myself until Monday....... The chief reason why I've been so unmotivated is because my calendar is empty. No coach telling me what to do, no training calender on the refrigerator to follow, nothing to keep me focused. I've been doing lots of searches trying to find races for 2010, but not alot is up yet. This is my plan for the rest of the year: Remainder of 2009: October 31 - 8k November 26 - turkey trot (undecided on whether to run the 5k or the 10k) December 13 - Off road Duathlon (7.2 mile run, 11.4 mtb) December 19 - 5k None of these will be "raced" they'll be just for fun. I'm especially excited about the duathlon. Should be cold, wet, and muddy. My major theme for the first half of 2010 will continue to be speed. Lots of short races. The second half I am hoping to do another xterra triathlon and maybe an ows event. Preliminary 2010 schedule: January 16 - Mega Fat Ass 17 mile trail run March 14 - 5k May 2 - Tacoma City Half Marathon May 17 - Capital City Half Marathon June 26 - Seattle Rock n Roll July 18 - OWS (1 mile or 5k) August 7 - Tacoma Narrows Half Marathon Augutst 15 - Xterra Portland I need to find a 10k to race. Hopefully something in April will pop up. I know Project Suck It made me faster and I just want to blow all my current PR's out of the water. These are my PR goals: 5k - 7:30 pace (23:18) 10k - 8:00 (49:42) Half Marathon - 8:30 (1:54) I haven't talked to Coach about any of these time goals yet. I know the 5k goal is doable for me, but I have no idea how the other distances stack up. I will start up my training with Coach officially in November. Also I have added an OWS to my calendar. I've been thinking that I need to do something different this year. I know swimming 1 mile is doable for me and I would love to attempt the 5k distance, but I'm no fool. I realize the amount of time swimming would monopolize training for that and I don't think that's what I want. Not when my running is improving so much. Also I would love to do the xterra portland this year, but August is a little sketchy for me. That's still a bit of time out right now I suppose. Obviously these are very preliminary races, but I need something to focus on right now before I turn into a piece of lard that can't get off the couch without maxing out her HR.
In other news, my hubby and I celebrated our 2nd anniversary this week. It's actually in August, but since he was gone.....We went out to a great dinner. I had duck and it was sooooo good. I love fall menus!
Here are some pics from our wedding weedend on Orcas Island.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Bloggy Update

I'm still alive. I just have been crazy busy eating, drinking, and doing school work. It's amazing how much of my time marathon training took up. I have been playing catch up in school and mid terms are this week. Blah, blah, blah, still hate it, but I picked a demanding major so I can't complain. I also am done in December so I have senor-itis which means I don't give a shit anymore. Ok, I do give a shit, but my discipline has seriously declined. I have some goals brewing for 2010, but I have midterms this week so I don't have time to discuss until Thursday. Quick recap - Took my hubby to a hockey game for his b-day which isn't until next month, but he'll be gone:(. It was fun. If I grew up in an area where hockey was big, I would have loved it since I love all things aggressive. It would have been the perfect sport for me I swear. My hubby grew up on E coast and played his whole adolescence and a little in college. It was a good time.
Workout news: I gained five pounds. Sweet. It all came in the form of wine and ice cream bars so really - it was worth it. I went for a run on Saturday for the first time (30 min only) and it was pretty awesome. I also went for a 4 hour mtb ride yesterday. It was an easy ride, but my quads were feeling in towards the end. Good muddy fun!! Need to work on technical skills, but only fell a few times. Unclipped one foot alot though. Use it or loose it.

after I cleaned her off a little. Lots of big puddles :) Good times.

She took care of me even though I haven't been taking care of her.

Also swam this morning. YAY. I heart swimming. I haven't been in the pool in ages and the last time I swam was.... August? This will be my regular thing.

One more thing before I go. Remember that post I did about jogger vs. runner when somebody called me a jogger and I cringed, yet didn't say anything because I didn't want to sound like a douche-bag. Well I was taking to a girl the other day about massages and I called the person who administers massages a masseuse and she actually corrected me by saying, "it's massage therapist." It was funny, she sounded like a pretentious bitch.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Race Report: Portland Marathon - the extended version

The day before: Portland is only a 2 hour drive from my hometown, but I am not very familiar with the city so we got there a little early to allow some time to drive the course. It looked pretty good. Lots of long flat stretches, with only one notable hill around mile 16. Nothing to be worried about. Checked into the hotel and hit up the expo. It was only around 3:00, but it was beginning to feel like a very long day and I decided right then and there that next time I have a marathon over an hour away I'm traveling two days before so I have the whole marathon eve day sans travel. Finally got some pizza for dinner and went back to the hotel to set up my gear and chillax. I was actually pretty calm, but I had a hard time falling asleep. I had some crazy ass sneezing attack that lasted almost 1/2 hour. I think they needed to clean their ventilation system or something because the air felt dusty. Ugh. Finally fell asleep around 11:00 and slept surprisingly well. Lots of visualization of strong running and joyously bounding across the finish line under 4:30. Marathon morning: Got up at 4am. Got ready. SUPER NERVOUS now.

I seriously didn't know if I wanted to poop or vomit for a good 45 minutes. As we were walking to the start (~1 mile) my stomach started FREAKING out. I've never been so nervous about anything in my life!

I had to stop at a hotel on the way to the start to go poop one last time. I was in major nerves-ville. Can you tell?! note about the outfit: I bought a cheap sweat suit and hat from target to throw away at the start so I didn't have to stand around in the chilly air freezing my buns off. I looked like a total nerd, but while everyone was standing around trying to stay warm I was nice and toasty. Suckas.
Once I got to the start area I did some plyos and light jogging to warm up my muscles and that really helped calm my nerves. Finally; I kissed my hubby good-bye, got my good luck wishes and went into the start area. I lined up with the 4:30 pace group. I was intending to stay with them and then if I had it in me in the last 3 miles speed up and give it all I had. My nerves had turned into confidence and I was so ready to do this.
note: I didn't set my Garmin to record any mile splits, I just wanted to keep an eye on my average pace (which was to be 10:18)
Miles 1 - 7: I have never run in a pace group before and it was so interesting. Everyone was kind of jocking for positions. I started out in the back and was just watching peoples feet in front of me hoping they didn't fall or trip and take me out. It was kinda crazy. Around mile 3 I had to go pee. Frick. I was so irritated with myself. There was a bunch of port-o-johns with no line at mile 5 so I ran across the course to pee quickly and forcefully. Obviously I lost the pace group, but I settled back into a 10:15 pace and felt great.
Miles 7 - 12: Around mile 7 my legs began to get a little heavy. I was actually slowed down to a 10:20 pace and was trying to figure out why I was feeling so fatigued. It was getting worse by the minute and I was starting to get pissed. What was going wrong? There was a turnaround at mile 9 that I was headed for which meant I could see all the faster runners on the other side of the road. I was trying to draw so much strength from them. They all looked so strong and graceful and I was feeling like a pile of lead. I kept pushing thinking my legs would come back and reward me for the last two weeks of downtime I gave them.
Mile 12: This was my lowest moment of the race. I knew I wouldn't be able to maintain this for the next 14 miles. My HR was already hoovering in the 180's and I was only maintaining around a 10:20 pace (slowly drifting though). I realized this was not going to be my day to hit 4:30 at this point. My legs were not having any of it. I saw my husband shortly after this point and I shed a few tears at the realization that all the work I had done to get here was not going to come to fruition this morning.
I really wanted to quit. Why bother going through with it? In the end I couldn't. I couldn't stop thinking about all the time, money and support that my husband invested into this goal. It was going to happen at least on some level. I shed my tears and slowed down.
Miles 13 - 19: After I came to terms with my loss of 4:30, I just plugged along. I walked through the water stations and gritted through it. As if my legs failing me weren't enough, I started getting THE WORST blisters I've ever experienced in my life! I could actually feel them pulsing and filling with fluid. My racing flats were failing me big time. I refused to alter my gait to accommodate them so I just literally gritted my teeth and tried to block them out.
Mile 20 - 21: This was another major low point in the race. I had enough of the blisters and I was just feeling sorry for myself. I was beginning to walk more and more. I felt like someone had punched me in the gut. Half-way through mile 20, I saw one of my friends from my running group. She ran to me and walked beside me for a minute. I will forever be indebted to her for the words of encouragement she offered me at this point.
Her: "You look strong girl. Keep going." Lie
Me: Wiping tears and snot from my face "This is not my day"
Her: "Yes it is! You got this. Your gonna just do a mile repeat. Run a mile repeat and then when you get to the downhill you can relax. Then your going to run another mile repeat at the bottom. That will put you at mile 23 and your going to bring it home."
Me: "ok"
Her: "feel sorry for yourself until mile 21 marker and then go."
Me: "ok" wipe tears and snot again. start running.
Mile 23: See my husband again. Feeling better.
Timing chip: 4:47:20/10:58 av pace
Garmin: 4:47:22/26.52 miles/10:50 av pace Ugh, I can't believe I ran an extra 1/4 of a mile.
Post-Marathon: These pictures say it all..........
After I took my shoes off I was much happier!
Post-marathon thoughts: Even though my marathon didn't turn out like I was expecting I did get faster training for it and that is a MAJOR SUCCESS. Right now I am swearing off marathons forever. I don't think my body was made for them. Will I do another, more than likely. My blisters are healing, but my ego is still bruised. I know you can't will em' all, but I am disappointed that I was not able to dig a little deeper. Of course I feel better about it very minute and when I think about the pain I was in for the majority of the race, I am actually quite surprised that I pulled out what I did.
This spring I'm concentrating on speed. Lots of short courses. 5k's, 10k's, halfs. Bring It.
I'm calling it....
Project Suck IT - The Sequel "Ones best success comes after their greatest disappointment"
Lastly, I just really want to say thanks to all you guys. Whenever I was feeling down or discouraged you all were there to pick me up and your support really meant the world to me. You guys are awesome!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Portland Race Recap - Quicky style

Chip time: 4:47:20 17 minutes from my Goal time BUT 49 minute PR. Good and bad I guess. Full race report soon.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Let's do this shit

Thanks for all your encouragement for the last couple of weeks. I think I can safely say that I'm one of those people who HATES TAPERING!! Recovery weeks - fine, but tapering is a whole nother animal. Of course there were lots of unideal conditions surrounding me for this taper. Lots of distractions and stressors, but as the country song says, "sounds like life to me." I'm getting ready to head out of town for the big event. Goal: Sub 4:30 marathon Super Goal: as close to 4:20 as possible I know there are lots of other racers tomorrow and I hope every one of you kicks major ass!!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

2 days to go

This is not how I imagined I would clean up fourteen weeks worth of all-balls-out training awesomenses, but it is what it is and I'll make the best of it. I do feel better. Thanks for all your advice and encouragement from my last post. My taper has kind of been a mess. Getting sick and missing a day of school really put me behind. I only ran 11 miles last week and worse - the wind got knocked out of my sails and unmotivation struck. Also, my father in law was visiting and we are doing major renovations on the house right now so not my idea of a restfully, focused taper. I know I'm ready physically. It's the mental part I'm kinda struggling with right now. I almost feel like I'm in denial. Like I'm not really going to prove how hard I've been trianing for the last 15 blissful weeks. Maybe it wont hit me until I'm in the car heading down to Portland.... I have three days to get my shit together starting yesterday. Giveaway: Miles of Kate is doing a GREAT giveaway! Go check her out.