July 30, 2010

Racin' Lake Merced

I think this was one of the coldest races that I've ever run....and, yes, it was in San Francisco in July :) But, I never complain about running in cool weather!! My coach wanted me to treat this as a tune-up for the half marathon. So, I got a tiny-taper and made sure to gel-up, etc. I ran the 4.5 mile race around Lake Merced in 34:47 (7:46 pace). Here's the beef on my race:

7:43-- I started out with the speedy peeps, felt strong, and held myself back to not be a jackrabbit...

7:31--There was a rad downhill, I relaxed, and I passed a couple strong women runners. I was concerned that they'd pass-me-back, but....I got 'em!!

7:55--Midway through this mile, I thought I was toast. My legs felt like jello, my breathing was off, there was a gradual uphill. I kept truckin' away and tried looking ahead to pull myself forward.

7:49--I'm really proud of this mile (even though it's slower than my goal 7:45 pace) because I convinced myself I was almost done. So, I pushed through some pain--with plenty of arm swinging and wheezing. My breathing felt a bit off by this point. Oh, and I was feeling pukey, too, which is GREAT sign that you're racin' and not just out for a run :O

7:57 (final 0.48)-- Oh, boy, I was giving it my all just reminding myself to move my legs. I lacked a kick. Near the finish, we had to run across a patch of grass, and I really had to concentrate to maintain my balance. My vision was wonky, too-- like I couldn't really focus. But, hey, I made it across the finish!

Post-race, there were plenty of refreshments (the chocolate cookies were delish), and I chatted with a few runners. Kudos again to the Dolphin South End running club because they put on really nice & low key races...this race had about 70 runners and the entry fee was $1! I'll be running more DSE races in the future.

July 27, 2010

End 'o' July

I'm not sure how to feel about the fact that this month is slipping away! I've had a few strong runs recently, and my coach thinks that things are coming together---and lord knows, I'm a sucker for positive appreciation :) At the same time, I know that the next few weeks of training are going to be strenuous--with peak workouts before my race on August 29th.

I raced a 5K in the beginning of June, and get to race again on Thursday in San Francisco!! It'll be another low-key DSE race. This time it's a relatively flat 4.5 mile race. In fact, it's so low key, that they asked runners to bring snacks to share. I bought a bag of cookies and hope to run fast enough that the good snacks are still available :P I'm also debating what to wear and need to make sure the outfit matches my Lunarglides....Ah, the frivolous details of running and racing! Seriously, I do plan on pushing hard during this race and testing my fitness.

July 25, 2010

What you can do

The truth is, we can all do more than where we draw our limits and boundaries. We are able to rise up (even after hitting the snooze button) and work harder, dig deeper, or run harder. Our minds think we can only do this or that. But, step by step, I'm figuring out that we can do more than those silly (and sometimes sad) limits. I give thanks to running for teaching me this lesson.

And I surprised myself today. I ran 12 miles- with 2 miles sub 8:29, 2 miles sub 8:24, and a give-it-all-you-got mile in 8:00. So, yes, I could do it.

July 24, 2010

Deep thoughts

Ruminations while consuming peanut butter (post-run, of course!)

Do I love peanut butter because I'm a runner?
Or am I runner because I love peanut butter so damn much?



July 21, 2010

400s

I went up to the track again this morning. It was extremely overcast, and I eased my legs into the 20 minute warmup. Then it was time for six 400s at my interval pace (sub 1:46).

I tricked myself by doing two sets of three 400s, and that really broke up the monotony of all those laps on the track! The truth is that when I'm pumping through an interval, I don't have the time or energy to get bored or feel much of anything. On the 5th and 6th 400, I just kept telling myself to run faster and NOT back off the pace or intensity.

By the way, my run streak is 7 days, and that means that tomorrow's a luscious rest day :)

July 20, 2010

Check

Yup, I did my functional-core routine this afternoon...The push ups and crunches were A-okay, and I also used my Bosu ball.

So, this blog is a great accountability system!!

July 18, 2010

Going longer

It's another sunny Sunday, and I nailed another long run- 13.8 miles! I knew that this would be a jump up in mileage, so the plan was to start at an easy pace. Even though it had been an up-and-down week for training, my legs felt fairly fresh for the first few miles. I'd gotten plenty of rest, but had Mexican food for dinner, which doesn't always lead to a happy runner's tummy! I cruised in zone from miles 3-8. Around mile 5 or 6, I got a bit tired/bored, but I think taking a gel (orange-vanilla Rocatane, which tastes narnar but propels me like jet fuel!) and relaxing helped that pass, which let me get back into a long run groove.

At mile 8, the *FUN* part of the workout began. With four repeats of 3 minutes hard (sub 8:05), followed by 3 minutes easy. I wasn't sure how this would feel, but it ended up being kinda easy ;) I think it's a sign that I'm getting stronger AND more comfortable with speedier paces, even during long runs or on tired legs!! I finished the run with 3+ miles in Zone 2 at around 9:30 pace, which was speedier than my warmup.

For the next week or so, I have the goal of running a couple different routes, and I also want to try a new electrolyte drink....Finally, I need to get back into the routine of doing two functional/core routines per week.

July 15, 2010

Track workout

Initially, I'd been scheduled to do a track workout on Wednesday, but my legs and body had lacked pep this week. So, I took a rest day on Wednesday and planned to go up to the track this morning, which would be the first one with my coach.

I woke up bright and early, dressed, and headed out for a 2 mile warm up with a few pick ups. My legs still felt a little tight, but I knew I should try my best on this track workout. The 400s were speedy & fun (1:41 & 1:44). The 800s hurt more, and I really had to convince myself that I had an extra gear and could ace the final 800 (3:36 & 3:41).....By the way, I definitely was in zone 4 to hit these interval paces! The 2 mile cooldown dragged a bit, and I took it quite easy.

All in all, this track workout went well, and I hope I'm getting stronger and faster, bit by bit.

July 11, 2010

No sun Sunday

Today, I am grateful for the Bay Area's fog! I had a strong 11 mile run in Alameda--with obscured views of SF ;)

I ran most of the workout in zone 2 and am finally learning how zone 2 feels. Zone 2 is the Goldilocks pace, which is not too easy & not too hard. I ran the last 2+ miles in zone 3, which meant that my endurance muscles had to kick it up a couple notches, and, you know what?? It was fun!

This coming week's training plan includes a track workout and a couple longer runs, which should be challenging. I think it'll be key to take good care of myself, including a bit of post-vacation detox.

July 6, 2010

Heap of heat

Running on the east coast in July requires, well, huevos!!

To get in a 10 miler, I got on the road at 5:45 am and still encountered humidity & heat. On the bright side, I got to explore a lovely neighborhood in Philadelphia. And, the greenery and wildlife (deer, bunnies, and squirrels) are precious :)

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