Friday, May 28, 2010

May 28

Back at Pton. Oh, so good to be back.

FUN:
Getting picked up by LW at the Dinky @ 12:30am
Lunch party
Helping Staff w/ mulching w/ LD and LW
Tow Path run w/ LD
Dinner @ Brown
Catching up w/ MH and seeing Smiley
KS reception - JG's entertaining tricks, EK's insanity, singing our favorites... good old times

FIT:
Reunion Run w/ LD... time to catch up with a good friend while cruising (me, laboring) over the old tow path. Wanted her to be able to get a half-decent workout, so we aimed for a 7:30 for 4, then tapering off for another two. I wasn't quite sure how 7:30 was supposed to feel on concrete, so I just went hard, which was probably 5K pace... at least 5K effort. Good to talk about life and everything as we went, though thankfully, she did most of the talking, haha. I started fading at mile 4ish, and the final mile was run with fatigued legs... up the long, long hill. Final sprint at the end, followed by some stretching in the grass.

Splits> 8:40 t, 3:59 p, 7:40 b, 4:07 m, 4:00 p, 4:07 t, 11:26 h. So the leg to "t" was... 6:57/mi... yup, 5K race pace, albeit downhill. 7:17/mi til the "b", 7:39/mi back to the "t", and 9:09/mi back uphill.

Rt TA went a little numb on the way back to the "t", but the rest of the day, it was fine (the norm... aka tingly but not damaged). No lingering side-effects, it seems.
5.8 in 44:02, 7:32 ave. Hey, that's great!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

May 23

BRAVO, Lost!

FIT:
6 hrs of sleep then a 2 hr nap later not quite enough... painful waking up, and it took me a while to get into a mode where I could even attempt a workout. Plan for the next few days, since I'll be traveling:

May 23: bike
May 24: short run
May 25: strength
May 26: travel
May 27: long run with a dear friend
May 28: dunno
May 29: ultimate
May 30: prob rest?
May 31: track workout

Anyway, it took about 12 min to go from 10mph to 13mph, but once I got going, it required less effort than previous bike sessions did, which is encouraging. Didn't even need water this time... wonder why. Didn't work as hard? Mph wise, not really. So maybe just physio changes have taken place. I ate an orange after the nap, but I got pretty hungry in the last 15 min. Oh yeah, the dist -26.2... probably the farthest I've ever biked. Took 1:58:00, 13.3mph. It's kind of interesting, that I bike about 2x faster tha I run. I think if I tried to run a marathon right now, it would be at about exactly half that pace.

Injurywise, not bad. Strange that I've been feeling pretty good recently. Yesterday, did the Jillian Michael's BFBM CD, double reps when I could stand it. Tiring, more than usual, since I guess I pushed it more than usual. Maybe I've been having kinks in my legs b/c I wasn't working some of those lat muscles lately, so it's good that I'm getting back into the JM and Step CD's, to provide a little x-training. Anyway, during the bike, the front of my left shin was somewhat strained in the last 20 min or so (not the TA, for once), but seems okay now.

Friday, May 21, 2010

May 21

FIT:
Worked myself fuzzy today. Glad to be able to run. Needed it. Been tense lately. 7.0 in 57:50, 8:16 ave. 1 degree treadmill, wearing 3n's and soccer sox. Went out really slow at first, mostly b/c I couldn't manage anything faster. Felt okay at work, compared to earlier this week, but legs are still just kinda wacked. Sped it up after a nice, verrrry long warmup, though. Splits> 8:44, 8:34, 8:29, 8:29, 8:17, 7:54, 7:20. Still had stuff left at the end, but I was speeding up because it made things in my right leg hurt less, so I needed to save the rest for another day, before I did any permanent damage. Rt hammie got numb @mi 6.

Did the run after eating about 220Cal of cookies. Yummy, and I guess not terrible, but it was mostly out of frustration/desire for sugar, so that part's not good. Eh...

FYI:
What Would You Do on ABC - really interesting. It's not only about how people respond to diff ethical situations, but how tweaking the situation a little bit drastically changes how people respond. Plus, it just warms your heart to see people stepping up out of comfort zones to help out strangers, by speaking up, refusing to do the wrong thing, helping out, etc. You see real life, everyday heroes. Check it out!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

May 19

FIT:
Today, it felt like I had rough little pebbles in between the muscle fibers in my legs, particularly in my TA's and rt butt. Boo, I say.

Really needed a run today, though. Head was fuzzy, really wanted something fruity and cold to drink at work. Dunno what it is. Needed to clear my head. Didn't know if I'd be able to manage a run, considering the little pebbles, but it worked out okay.

4.0 in 30:40, 7:40 ave on Treadmill @ 1 degree. Noticed that I could go at 7:35 okay, but 7:30 would make my rt butt start hurting bad. Still a big knot there, makes sitting uneven. Boo.

Monday, May 17, 2010

GEAR GUIDE: Mileage Tracker

Another homemade creation...
Wanted to look for something pre-made that would do this, but couldn't find what I was looking for, so I found a good way to use all of the cardboard boxes I save (from the massive amounts of cereal, popcorn, cookies, etc that I eat).
I made... a Mileage Tracker! Its purpose is to provide motivation to reach my 1000/yr (stretch... realistically, 750/yr) goal. You want to add numbers and keep it moving up. You can also be proud of how far you've come, too. It ended up working out well that I couldn't find a pre-made one, because instead of just drawing or cutting out normal numbers, I turned the numbers into running-related gear or symbols, to give it a persoal and cool-looking touch. The major digits are the fun shapes, and the tenths digits are words written in the shape of numbers, describing my motivations for running (like #2... Boston Qualifier).


[PICTURE OF ALL THE CARDS TO BE ADDED LATER]

Anyway, as of today, I have 295.2 in about 4.5/12 months. At this rate, I'll hit 787.2 at year end. With these nagging injuries, 1000 just won't happen this year, but I can save the goal for next year. 787 would be the most ever, probably. I did 594.2 last year, and I probably didn't do more than that in HS, so it's a step forward. I gotta find a way to not get injured.

THINGS THAT SEEM TO HELP AGAINST INJURY:
1. Forefoot running (maybe not, though, considering the recent tibialis anterior hypertrophy that's been going on since I changed my footstrike, which is to the point of cutting off circulation sometimes... haven't quite figured this one out... I think forefoot has helped alleviate knee pain, although maybe the lack of knee pain is just from reduced LR's).
2. Not playing ultimate, where I'm prone to ankle sprains
3. Strenghtening my hips (strangely, running seems to unbalance my abductor:adductor ratio, which causes problems, so I may have to actively strengthen the abductors to keep things running smoothly. I always seem to feel better the day or two after strength sessions where I use the PT elastic band)
4. Stretching (probably... I don't do it enough to have a definitive opinion on this, but it's probably good)
5. Icing (feels good, too)
6. Listening to your body (I don't do it enough, but I'm getting better about it.
7. Arch supports for flat-footed ppl like me
8. And to a lesser extent, sleep, refueling within 30min, glucosamine & chondroiton, general nutrition.

Without a major race planned, I don't do risky workouts as much, which is kind of good, but I also probably don't do what I'm capable of. Like if I wasn't training for the CM Half, I wouldn't have done many of the workouts I did, and I'd still be far behind. So it's risky, but the rewards are good. The dangers are pretty big, too, I guess. You only live once, but you only get one body, too. Fine line to walk.

May 17

FIT:
Tried to run today, with more success than expected, I guess.

Rt hip gradually getting better. Problem seems to be mostly in the extensor now... originated in the aductor, but I pulled the extensor while trying to run through the abductor knot.

Sleep seems to help recovery. It's like going into a magic box, and while you're in the box, recovery happens fast, and when you leave the box, you're a fair bit better. I've been appreciating that aspect of sleep much more recently, so I try to sleep when I can, first just to catch up, and also to try to fix myself.

Last night, I did the step CD. Helped to get some blood flow into the knot on my butt, I think. Did a little number on my anterior shoulders, though, during tridips, which I could really feel while pumping my arm during today's run.

So today, I was feeling somewhat better, and since I wouldn't get a chance to run tomorrow, I wanted to try to get one in today. For the first time in a MONTH AND A HALF, I tried the treadmill again. Seems like the apartment ppl don't plan on replacing the magnet, making the treadmill useless, so I brought one from the fridge this time. Only stayed on a couple of seconds, so I looked in a drawer by the fitness room faucet and found a brochure with some tape on it. Carefully peeled the tape off and secured the magnet on the mill. It worked. Sweet.

Wore Oxysox, n3's. Splits> 8:00, 7:41, 7:44, 7:44. Had to back off (and not do my usual neg splits) b/c my hip was nagging too much. Had to carefully make it through the last half mile. Felt really good to run, though, even more than it has been outside. Maybe b/c it's cooler (73 degrees) indoors. Felt good to get my blood flowing and my breating hard.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

May 15

FIT:
More on my sleep saga...
Went to bed at 1-ish, woke at 4ish (not sure why), and I remember my legs in general pain, and I remorsefuly thought "my goodness, why would anyone put themselves through so much agony by running through pain like this, it's sick!". Stayed up til 6ish, after eating oatmeal with milk and PB b/c I couldn't all back asleep. Got tired again and slept until 7-8am, when my dad called. Went back to sleep til 11am. So I think I got about 8 hrs total.

GEAR:
The saga continues, but now with a focus on gear...
Went shopping for food, shampoo, etc at Wm. Checked out the iPod touch and Zune in person. A couple week ago, in my 7 in the rain, I had thought that the shuffle had run out of batteries b/c the light said so, but it actually died kind of, maybe from a mix of rain and sweat. It had happned before (last time, 100% due to sweat), and after about a month and re-charges to heat it up, it started working again. I thought this time, it was as good as dead... could it be recussitated twice? It's a 1st generation shuffle. Probably don't see those much anymore, huh? It must be... at least 5 years old from when I first got it (refurbished, $30ish). Let's see... it came out in 2005... and now it's 2010... okay, 5 yrs old. I didn't really use it until a few years after I got it, so I wasn't aware of all its features (like rewind/ff by holding the next track / last track buttons) until pretty recently. Anyway, it's a great product and serves my needs, which are pretty basic. Nowadays, I only listen to running podcasts, so I don't care much about sound quality or even basic buttons. I use the volume controls often, since outside noises can vary a lot when you're close to traffic or people or moving water or wind, and since podcasts are often made up of different segments (some of which are recorded during peoples' runs, with portable mic's) clipped together, making volume levels variable. Other than that, if it plays and can withstand sweat and wet okay, it's good. But with now 2 recussitations and 5 years, I'm thinking about getting a new one. Mosty b/c I've gone through 3 headphones within a couple of months (the original headphones had lasted 5 years!!!), and I don't wanna end up spending more on headphones than it would cost to get an entirely new mp3 player. I can get a cheap one for $30... with much more memory and probably functions than my current one has. So I looked at dealnews.com and saw the iPod Touch and the Zune. I didn't really know what the Touch was before. Turns out that both of these enable free internet browsing (assuming you go to a wifi hotspot or have a password for whatever network happens to be in the area)! That's so cool! And it plays video, and the Zune has HD radio. And apps (far more options on the iPod than on the Zune, from what I understand). For the same price range, I could get either, but there are significant differences in pros/cons, that makes it tough to pick one over the other. So maybe I'll just wait until they come up with one that has all the features I want bundled into one. In the meantime, my dear shuffle is still holding up, so I don't mind using it some more.

FIT:
Okay, back to my day. Took another nap after shopping... about 3 hours. Then, my dad called again and woke me up. Afterwards, I decided to go on the recumbent bike. My right butt is still knotted, and after the diaster at the end of yesterday's run, no way I'm running til that gets better. So biking, a long session, in place of an LR, which I can't do on land too often anyways. 90min, 705 Cal, 22.6 mi. It was nice. Went well. Sweat sooo much. I'm always surprised by how sopping wet I get. Start out dry, get pretty wet by 15 min, and stay like that for the next 1:15. Drank about 0.6 L of water throughout. Butt started out knotted, and the knot had grown by the end. Hurts to sit. Good workout, though. My heart was really working.

Friday, May 14, 2010

May 14

FIT:
What a week... banged up but at least sleep's a little better.
Wed night, finally stared to make up the deficit - got 11 hrs. Felt so much better at work the next day. Was super x-sore in my legs at work. Strength session at night, went pretty well, even though it had been 9 days since the last one. Usually do 1/wk for maintenance, but it looks like 9 days may be okay too. Some higlights of the session - 30 tridips (a record by 5-10), and matched the quad dips record with a 45-50-55. Normally, one set is enough for me, but at unexpected times (maybe this is the third time ever), I can handle multiple. Other records were matched, but those happen more often b/c they're my usual stopping points, so no biggie.

Today, it was another 2 days since my last run. Body would rather wait, but my fear factor didn't want to. Yesterday, my left achilles had started roaring suddenly when going up some stairs at work, and it didn't get better til after a decent night's rest. Strange how it started suddenly.

Today, I did 5.2 in 45:47. Did 3x[ERP+school], adding the school portion to my usual 0.7-0.75 mi ERP laps. 433 cal. Splits> 15:02 (1.70 mi), 15:14 (1.73 mi), 15:29 (1.71 mi). WOOOOOOOAAAAH, I JUST PUSHED SOMETHING AND MY GARMIN LIT UP!!!! I DIDN'T KNOW IT COULD, HAHA!!!!! DUNNO WHAT I PUSHED. SWEEEEEEEEET!!! Anyway, 8:48 ave. Slow, but kind of intended that way b/c I knew I'm banged up and just wanted to get some miles in if I could. Plus some decent heat - 82 degrees. Not terrible, especially as the sun was going down, but it still does have an impact.

But in the final quarter mile, my right butt, which developed a big knot overnight after really pushing my weak hip abductor in yesterday's session, finally gave out, and it was painful to try to barely shuffle/limp the rest of the way. Applying as much pressure as I could on the knot seemed to help quell the massive pulled-ness of some strand of something that goes across (rather than up and down) my right butt. Terrible. Good thing it happened relatively close to the finish line, I guess.

Warm ice bath (pool has gotten warm in the heat) afterwards, then icing afterwards.

FUEL:
Appetite's all wacked up. Nothing's very appealing, and my body kind of wants fuel, but I don't really want it.

FUN:
Lack of it this weekend. For so many weekends in a row, I had stuff going on, and for the first time in a while, I have nothing planned. I used to savor it, the freedom. Now, I don't know what I'm going to do with myself. Maybe catch up on sleep some more.

I think I may need a big race to look forward to. I have some good things to look forward to right now, pretty big things, but it's not quite the same.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

May 11

FIT:
Already May... time flies.

And a second or third week of less than ideal sleep. I try, but my attempts at catching up haven't been working out. Ah well.

Took 2 days completely off, and a third day would've been like aaah, so I squeezed in a run before a picnic/Bibl study. 4.3 in 33:21, 7:45 ave. After the sappedness and brokeness my legs have been feeling, I was surprised to feel pretty good at the start. It was cool, and I wore my n3's, Oxysox, sportsbra, with my shirt hanging out of my shorts. Decided to go on the other direction on my usual trail, to shake things up and take advantage of the other side before they paved the last part of it. Yay dirt, boo pavement, except they must've paved it just yesterday or the day b/f. The sides of the path were a bit squishy, and I made ever so slight depressions in the ground where I ran. Kind of a strange feeling, sinking into asphalt like that. It was a/b 60% pavement, 40% sponge overall. Much more pavement than I'm used to, but a little bit won't hurt.

Went out in 17:04, came back in 16:17. Unfortunately, my legs didn't hold up for long, and my rt hammies felt a bit strained, affecting my gait a litte bit.

Afterwards, went to see the Clemson vs. Furman game. Chilly, but fun hanging out w/ AD and her family, chatting while enjoying the game.

LTP:
I can see work stuff creeping into my blog. Like "Long Term Planning"... uh. As long as it's just helping...
Well, this happens to be work-relate anyways. My plan was to run a half in the fall and ideally a full (but probably a half, due to what seem to be physical limitations... a propensity towards injury). Was going to do one in ATL, since it's close, free accomodations, yet big enough for a nice and exciting race, for sure. There wasn't a good one in the fall, though (13.1 seems rural-ish and small, and the ATL marathon hosted by their track club doesn't have its course closed to traffic, so you breathe in fumes the whole time, and its doesn't have the sponsors to put some bang in the race). And so I thought about doing the local Spinx half, which is tiny and partially on the course I usually run, but I think I'd be doing it at least once in my life anyways. And it turns out that this may be best, since I can register the day before, which may be necessary, since I may be out of the country duing the later half of the year at unpredictable times.
So the plan now is to Spinx it if I'm in town. If not, no worries. Then, maybe a Boston Half or ATL in the winter/spring of 2011. Don't see a full as much of a possibility right now, as I try to stretch out my poor, strained legs. Maybe stretching isn't good for strained stuff. Desperate for some change, though.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

May 8

FIT:
Not a great run. Should've biked or rested, but today was the grand opening of the continuous 13-mi version of the Swamp Rabbit trail. At designated entrances, people in bunny ears were giving away foam bunny ears and raffle tickets, so I wanted to enjoy this unique experience and collect a very reasonable amount of tickets.

I ended up going to 3 stops out of the 4 I originally planned... doing the 4th would've added another 2 miles each way, haha. My TA and both sides of my rt knee had issues almost from the start, as if everything wasn't 100% connected in there, but it was bearable. I got my tickets and ran around with bunny ears. Didn't win anything, but it was nice looking at the art festival going on in town at the same time and hearing lots of different music groups perform. It was really well put together, and all of the artists on display/for sale were spectacular.

I wore n3's w/ first-time UA compression socks, which are a lot thinner UA material, compared ot the thick OxySox. They were good, I guess. Hard to tell how good it really is if its goodness is upstaged by unrelated pain. Had a visor, shades, XC singlet, soccer shorts, and the Nathan Shadowpak as well.

5.7 in 49:11, 8:39 ave, 465 Cal. No splits. Walked around in sandals afterwards, a good cool-down and break from arch supports. Some barefootists say that wearing arches weakens already weak arches, and I think they're probably right. But I think I need arches for my work shoes and running shoes anyway. I'll just have to rely on home and out in sandals time (which is pretty much any time I'm not at work or running) to strengthen my arches.

My calves still seem perpetually sore. Or maybe not really. This time it's prob b/ of yesterday's race, where sprinting would do it. I guess I only really notice it if it's there, so I assume that since I notice it when it's there, it's always there... if you know what I mean.

FUEL:
Still low on sleep. In fact, woke up at 5:30am today after going to bed at 1:00am ish. Might've been b/c I needed fuel. I'm at a weight low, excluding HS weight and pre-college insanity. I'm sure to fuel sufficiently and eat throughout the day and avoid being hungry, b/c I know how it messes you up. And my racing's probably better than ever now, 5K-wise (not sprint-wise, and not long distance-wise... and I didn't race 5K's during my peak last year, so I don't know how good I was, but it's prob not far from where I am now for 5K's)), but when you get to a certain point, you're below optimal weight and performance (not to mention mood, health) suffers. So I'll just keep tracking it like you know I will. Haven't tried to lose weight... just a result of the training. I'll just try to give my body what it wants, hopefully.

I've been kind of picky lately, like I'll not want certain foods, most foods in fact, but there's something I want, and I try to find out what that is. Strange. Like certain textures or tastes will pop up. Can't explain it much.

Friday, May 7, 2010

RACE REPORT: Swamp Rabbit 5K

An unexpectedly nice ending to a day I thought was gonna be a wash.

[Some of my blogging habits don't lend to good reading, but I guess I just like to give a quick summary before diving into the minute and odd details I usually focus on. Gives you a chance to decide whether or not you want to bother reading on, I guess.]

I didn't think yesterday's bike intervals were going to do too much damage, but I was a tiny bit sore today at work, and not the feels good kind of soreness that comes a few days' rest after a hard workout, but the fresh soreness. I was like, oh, too bad. Oh well, today's race is a wash anyways b/c of the heat (84 degrees... better than the 89 then 86 originally predicted), and I'll know better next time. Since I've biked maybe just once per month this year, and since I've never tried bike intervals before, I didn't know how I'd feel the next day.

Ok, really not that impressive. I was just lucky the way age groups go. Surprisingly, the 20-29 age group is slow for the women. The two 5K's I ran preiously were part of the corporate sheild, where they only have 3 age groups to cover everyone. It turns out that the women who always soundly beat me are in their 40's!!! All 6 age group winners from the 30-39 and 40-49 age groups beat me. So I just got lucky w/ age groupings. Maybe I'll do more non-corp sheild races.

At work, I decided to wear OxySox. I know some people wear them at work or on long plane rides, to aid in circulation. I figured it would perhaps prime me for a better run. Usually, you don't wanna try anything new on race day, but it seems innocent enough.

Left work at 4:15, and good thing, since it took ridiculously long to get there... an hour! On top of my usual 30ish min commute + walk to the office, plus driving back. As I left the office and felt the blast of heat as I went outside, I even considered just scrapping the race. Too hot. Makes me feel queasy. How will I run in this? But I had been keeping this race as something to look forward to all week, and as a way to keep up some motivation and intensity with my training during the summer months.

Finally went through traffic and got there. Made me appreciate my 20ish min, one-way drive w/ minimal traffic. The long drive made me kinda impatient, so I was not in a good mood. Then, I had to park on a baseball field, which involved driving thorugh a little ditch, and I don't like to hurt my car or drive through tight or risky spaces, since I'm not a good driver. Anyway, I got my number. Between the bathrom break and putting on my number, I was sad to see that they had missed the fact that I was on my company's team. That would mean that I wouldn't be scoring us points, sad. A while later, though, I realized that it had me down as age 34! So they gave me the wrong bib, for someone w/ the same name! I hoped that the other me didn't already take my real number. It would mess things up, to have our timings switched. I was riled up and sprinted back to the number pickups... great thing to do before a race, I'm sure, haha. Anyway, my real number was still there, and I made the switch, no harm done.

A good strategy for a hot day - I splashed my upper body with water a couple of times, and it did a lot to cool me down. It all dried surprisingly quickly, but along with the water, heat got removed. I did the usual warmup, dynamic stretching, strides, a bit more regular slow running than usual. With my legs still a bit leady from yesterday's intervals, I needed to get them moving to feel fresh again, but it was so hot, that my HR would get up really quickly, and things just weren't looking good.

It was time to line up fo the race. I was happy to see lineups by pace. There was 6-7 min/mi, 7-9, then something else... 9 it must be. 7-9 is pretty wide, I thought. And my usual race pace is 7:00, so where to go.... I was going to go somewhere between the two. Surprisingly, there was chip timing for this race, although it's a new kind of chip... not a platic chip, not a D-ring for your shoe, but a foam stick on the back of your race number. Interesting. Anyway, chip timng doesn't help much if there are slower people in front of you that you need to dodge. That distance and that forcible slowing down adds up and can be pretty frustrating. I was pretty close to the start, in my opinion. Maybe 35 feet behind?

But once the race started, I regretted not starting closer. Oh man, totally stuffed for the first quarter. Even pretty much stopped to go around some people. It was sooo bad, and I don't think there was anyone in the first quarter mile that was anywhere near 7/mi. It got better after that, though. I was going under pace for a while (6:45ish... my goal-goal time on good weather days). Then, the hills came... hills that have no business being in a race as short as a 5K. There were maybe 3 ups and downs, pretty steep. Not a fast course. Skipped the water at the first mile marker to not waste time. But wanted water at the 1.5 and got some there. Some more at the 2 mile marker, and splashed a lot on my face. That last mile was on the new Swamp Rabbit trail and was flat with a little downhill at the end. It was just a matter of hanging on. I was struggling, and while those first 2 miles flew by fairly quickly, this last one dragged on. I drafted off another girl for a while and hoped to beat two other HS-age ones right in front of me eventually, but just hanging on would be tough. I passed the girl I was drafting off of, then she cauht me again. Finally, the last 0.1 came, and I turned on the after burners.

I think I was a little more hyperventillating than usual in the finish chute today, prob b/c of the heat. Anyway, dropped off my foam chip, got 3 dixie cups of water, enjoyed a mistng hose that someone was spraying, and had an apple then a banana. I stretched a bit and walked around. The lines after a while got really long, and I realized how nice it is to finish early. Didn't have to wait in line for long.

Watched and cheered a little at the finish after a while. Then, as the 1-hr mark hit, I headed over to the "block party"... more like a post-race tent section w/ hotdogs and chips and live music. Didn't partake in the hotdogs. Got a Chick-fil-a cow, which made me happy. I hung around for awhile, just walking around and being around people. It was kind of nice, not having pressures of getting on with the rest of my day as if it was a Saturday. Since it was a Friday night, I could just enjoy being off of work and linger.

I ended up lingering for a while and figured that at some point, they must be planning on announcing the awards. The sun was setting, and I had no idea what time it was, but they said that awards would be at 8:30, just 10 min away. Watched lots of little kids enjoying free frisbees promoting the new trail. I never had a chance at awards in previous races, but I thought I'd stick around anyways and support the corporate shield races and runners, and there's always that hope that you have of somehow getting something. I laughed at myself when I thought of that hope and figured that maybe after a year of racing in my new town, that I'd eventually give up.

They had awards for little kids, and a 10 and under boy finished in 18-something... in this heat!!! For real? That boy's gonna get recruited like crazy. The fastest woman overall was 19-something. Not a chance. The awards were a railroad spike from the Swamp Rabbit railroad that used to be where the trail is now, or something like that... supposed to be 120 yrs old. Also coffee you could redeem if you went to the coffee shop. Age groups kept going by, and then for 20-29 women, 3rd... my name! I was so surprised and worrying the whole time I was up there that it was the wrong me and that the real one would show up and be like what's your deal. But no such thing, happened, haha. Got my picture taken and stuff all mentally frazzled like that. So surprised. They said that my time was 22:45 or something, but my watch had said 23:33. Dunno. We'll see when the results come online. Anyway, that made me really happy. My first award in a non-HS race since my first year of racing, when I was a 6th grader (also got third then). Third's my thing, I guess. I felt validated. Validation is nice. Pathetic, I know, but I think everyone wants to feel validated.

Lots of refueling afterwards. Still on a happyness high, though kinda tired, too. I was low on sleep this week, another reason why I wasn't expecting a great time. The 23:33 is heat-logged, but it's still right around my Soph yr State XC meet time, so to be close to a great weather race time brings its own satisfaction.

Watch splits> 3.2 in 22:33 (Ooooooooooooooooooh, it was 22:33. Makes much more sense now!!! haha. Hey, not bad for heat and hills and a slow start!!!. And my watch said 3.2... even better news if it was a long course. Anyway, continuing...), 7:04/mi, 265 Cal. 6:56 (mostly downhill, but sloooooow start. 1.01 mi), 7:24 (ppl spread out more, but hilly! 1.04 mi), 8:12 (hanging on, 1.14 mi). Oooh, I'm excited about my time now.

About the optimal time of day to run... I think I've seen research with opposite conclusions. Morning is better for some chemical reasons, evening is better for warmed up reasons... very high level and possibly wrong, my summaries are. I'm trained for evening running. I wonder what would happen on a 40 degree day with full sleep in the evening wearing flats. Not impossible at all! A very doable thing! The temps I can't control, but there will be quite a few ops in the winter. And the sleep and shoes are totally under my control. If I can do more speedwork (I may be healed enough for it now... eh, never mind about that... may be far enough from the inital injury now)... let's see what happens!

Stats:
3/285 women 20-29.
15/1677 women.
131/2910 overall.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

May 6

FIT:
After a strength day 2 days ago and a day off yesterday, I was pretty healed up today and itching to use my legs. I was going to swing by the park and do perhaps a 3er after meeting some friends at Panera, but it started hailing like crazy. I never saw hail in my 20 yrs of growing up, so driving in it and hearing it bang my car was an experience. Anyway, I went home, moped around, stretched a bit, and eventually decided to go to the fitness room before it closed.

I was just going to do an easy 30 min to stay primed for tomorrow's race without doing any damage or using up energy stores. However, it was feeling more like nothing, too easy for any benefit, so I decided to try intervals. Intervals the day or two before races back in HS did wonders for me, and I know it'll be probably (I "know" "probably"???) not nearly as effective due to specificity, but why not?

After a 10min warmup (I was warmed up at 8, my magic warmup #) at ~ 13mph, I did 10 x [1:30 hard (~19mph) / 0:30 easy (~13mph)]. I was just gonna do 5, but I found myself recovered after a/b 25s, so I just added another on each time. Rt butt a bit messed up... goes numb b/c I think a nerve's mesed up there, but no big worries. Still hoping for a hot and slow but effort-ful race tomorrow.

Monday, May 3, 2010

May 3

FIT:
A mediocre run turned good. Almost didn't get out the door today. My TA was still giving me issues at work today but felt somewhat better after I tried to squeeze the trouble ligaments a bit to stretch it out. Who knows if that would've done any good. Anyway, I was tired after only 5ish hrs of sleep last night and then a bleh day physiologically. Tried to pump myself by reading some nice blog posts. It would've been okay if I hadn't run. With a 5K planned on Friday afternoon as a way to do quality speedwork (not expecting a PR b/c it'll be sooo hot), I'd run Wed and do strength tomorrow. Since I ran yesterday, it wouldn't be terrible if I skipped today. It'd also work out fine to run today, though. But I eventually got out the door, as it was drizzling outside.

Went out and started going. The TA started giving me a bit of pain a couple of miles in, but it didn't seem to get worse as time went on, so I just took it as a given and ran through it. Eventually, it disappeared, and I even got a second wind at mile 5. It was incredible. Things that seemed to help the TA issue was not overstriding in the least bit. I had to be pretty much landing right over my right foot to keep the pain down. At least that's the position I would be targeting anyways during sprints. It also helped to butt-kick pretty high. I seem to have trouble flexing the lower leg, so by lifting up, I can just let gravity pull the lower leg back down, and I don't have to use any muscles to flex the leg.

It went from being rainy to downpour to barely sprinkling, although besides the amount of puddle/river I had to run through, it felt pretty much the same to me b/c of the visor. Oh, sweet visor. My iPod died about 6 mi in, but luckily, it was just b/c of battery, and not b/c of sweat or rain, I think. Charging it up as I type. Wore Oxysox... great again, shadowpak, 1224's, soccer shorts, sportsbra. I was surprised to be able to run past the pain. It'll probably set in later, but ah well. I would normally say "live to run another day," but I just had to take advantage of the relatively cool and rainy weather... it's gonna be a painfully hot summer.

It was 7.3 in 1:05:00, 8:53 ave, acc to Garmin. I stretched it to 7.3 b/c I wanted to do an hour-long run. It felt like I ran a while, but it was only 7.3. Ah well, long isn't a bad thing. I got to slowly savor the run. 608 Cal. Splits> 6:36 (0.73), 6:29 (0.74), 6:25 (0.73), 6:29 (0.71), 6:33 (0.71) <<32:34>>, 6:33 (0.73), 6:37 (0.73), 6:29 (0.74), 6:29 (0.74), 6:15 (0.76)... def slower pace all-around. B/c of sloshy ground? Extra weight carried around in clothes and shoes? Tiredness from yesterday? Oh well, it felt good. My cardio system got a good workout... lungs were working it in the last couple laps.

Ate lots of watermelon afterwards... maybe too much, b/c it hurt to try to down miso soup w/ salmon afterwards... too full...
I had cookies beforehand. Not low-fat, but the sugar gave me the needed energy for a low-sleep day.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

May 2

FIT:
Finally got to catch up on sleep this weekend. Didn't realize how low I was until now. Yesterday, a 3-mi walk to support MS. Then, went to Paris Mt w/ my dad for a 5-mi hike in decent overcasts weather. 1 mi mild, 1 mi steep, 2 mi downhill paved, 1 mi easy. Then, I went to bed at maybe 4 or 5pm. Then, I woke up at 6:30. It was a bit dark, maybe too dark for the pm, since sunset is at 8, but it had been overcast all day. So I checked my cell clock - am. Phew, slept a lot! Wanted to get a run in, since I've only had 1 all week, but my legs were still kinda sapped from tiredness. Was going to squeeze it in after church, since the park is on my way home, but the sun was out full-blast, and it was just too hot.

So I ended up taking a nap all afternoon... still so strangely tired. Then, at 6pm, ate, then went out. Usually I don't have too much of a problem with the eat-and-run. Maybe b/c of the heat, though (87 degrees), you could just feel it more. Not too bad. With the heat, the run just felt more laborious than usual. Wore Oxysox, short shorts, shades, sportsbra. 4.4 (surprisingly low this time) in 37:16, 8:28 ave, 357 Cal. Splits> 6:22 (0.71), 6:08 (0.72), 6:10 (0.73), 6:10 (0.73), 6:14 (0.72), 6:09 (0.73).