Sunday, April 29, 2012

another rainy race

New hat and headband to help provide attitude.
Oooo, look!  My second blog post today!!

So yeah, I ran the Get in Gear Half marathon yesterday.  If you recall, I won an entry to the race via a marvelous little invention called Facebook. The internet certainly is chock full of goodness!

Yesterday's race was just like last year's....cold, rainy and windy.  For some reason, it was a much tougher race than last weekend's half marathon. I don't think I hydrated as well this past week, and I was having GI issues most of the week as well...... I'm still figuring out this whole fueling thing.  It's a puzzle, that's for sure.  Good think I like puzzles!

Post-race soaking wet honeybadger.
I met up with the same friend I ran with last year (Julie) and we had a great time catching up on everything that's been going on since the Minneapolis half marathon (the last race we ran together.)  I also got to see my sister-in-law (well ok, technically she's my ex-sister-in-law but as far as I'm concerned, we're still family!) She ran an amazing race and finished under 2 hours.  I'm so jealous of that pace!  I was going to get pictures of all of us, but the porta-potties were calling our names.... so my SIL and I lost each other before the start.  Didn't see her again until the out-and-back portion of the race.  She was waaaayyyyy ahead of me - no way I could have kept up with her! Another work friend was running too, and also killed it at 2:02.  I have some speedy friends!

So anywhoo, the upshot of the day was that I didn't get a distance PR, but I did get a course PR!  My official time was 2:14:53, last year's time was 2:23:26 so that's an improvement at least. GarminElectra bailed on me at the start. The lying tart APPEARED as though she was ready to run the race with me, and chirped when I hit the start button as I crossed the mat, but at mile three I realized there was no beeping happening.... so I had to restart her. Grrr.  That means I only have my splits for the last 10 miles. SUCH a frickin' diva.

Avg Pace

We must have been REALLY slow for those first three miles because my overall pace was 10:18.  It was pretty crowded at the beginning and we were getting passed by a lot of people, but that's usually how it is for me anyway.  I like to start slow and then once my body gets over the fact that I'm making it run, it levels off and I can slowly pick up the pace.

I started to fall apart a bit at mile eleven (mile 8 according to GE) and needed some sustenance..... my hands were so cold I couldn't get my honey stingers out of my pocket so I had to walk. I told Julie to just go ahead and I would catch up.... not so much - I didn't see her again until the finish line.  She was flying and ended up about 2 minutes faster than me.  I really had to dig deep those last two miles and WILL myself to keep running in the last mile.  Not exactly the strong finish I had hoped for but, oh well.

After the race I still had 5 miles on the training plan. So I went home, changed my clothes and headed to the treadmill.  And I did my 5 miles for a total of 18.  Just like last year, it made me feel like a badass honeybadger to do all those miles.  Funny how that works!  After all that, I took a well-deserved ice bath.  I hate them and I love them at the same time.  My muscles are always much happier after an ice bath, but the during part?  Ugh.  The actual sitting in a tub of icy water is NOT happy time.


Colorful language helps me cope.

heading to grandma's - week 10

I am so behind in my blogging!  It was another tough training week up here near Lake Wobegon..... I got through it but it weren't pretty.  Here's the compelling recap!

Week 10: April 16-22

Easy Run As Follows:
Warm up brisk walking 5-10 min a
Easy run of 4 miles@11:15 min pace
C/D w/brisk walk of 5-10 min
workout note: 4.1 miles. 10:30 pace.  Nothing special!

Hill Run As Follows:
Warm up with 1 mile at 11:30 pace
Run Progressive Hills:  (TREADMILL please!)
¼ mile at 3.0, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, 5.5, 5.0, 4.5 with ¼ mile recoveries at 1% in between.  Try to stay between a 11:00-11:30 min pace.
C/D with brisk walk 5-10 min
workout note: I actually like these kind of workouts. So much more interesting than just running for 5 borrrrrrinnnngggg miles.  I was sweating like nobody's business too. A good cleansing run! Overall pace 11:18.

workout note: walked 2.61 miles with Jane. The apple trees are all in bloom and smell fantastic!

4 Miles Easy Run
WU w/5-10 mins of brisk walking
Run 4 miles at 11:15 pace.
Cool down with 5-10 min brisk walk.
workout note: skipped this one.  Long work day and I just didn't have it in me.

workout note: planned rest day.  Drove to St. Cloud with the husband!

Long Run
WU for 1 mile at 12:30 pace
Run 15 miles at 11:15 min pace
Cool down with brisk walk for 5-10 minutes
Earth Day Half Marathon.  PR baby!!  You can read all about it HERE.
I didn't run my extra miles due to travel.  But I walked Jane 1.59 miles when we got home so I'm giving myself points for that.

workout note: Making my core do some work. 48 push-ups, 15 crunches, 10 plank sets, 15 prone cobras, 20 reverse crunches, 20 supermans, 20 pendulums.

Expected miles: 29
Actual miles: 22.2
Miles walked: 4.2

So there you have it. A bit short on miles but whatever.  Another week in the bank!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

earth day half marathon

Pre-race: enjoying my tasty
honey stinger jot thingies.
Last week, on the spur of the moment, the husband and I signed up for another half marathon.  It's in St. Cloud, which is about two hours away; we thought it would be fun to have a little getaway/alone time while still getting our long runs done.

Things didn't exactly go as planned.  Let's see:
1. We both worked later than planned, which meant we left later than planned.  Rush hour traffic + construction EVERYWHERE = a long-ass, crabbiness-inducing drive.
2. Obviously, the traffic got to us. We got into a verbal tussle on the way to St. Cloud.  About what, you ask?  We fought about light rail and its cost/benefit ratio.  (WTF?? Who FIGHTS about stupid stuff like that? Ummm, yeah, I guess we do.)

So cold, waiting to start.
3. I booked a room in a pretty crappy hotel that had ZERO soundproofing between rooms. We got to hear every conversational detail of the huge family in the next room AND the movie they were watching. Thank goodness for the noisy air conditioner fan.
4. We ate a nasty dinner at Green Mill (where I skipped the adult beverage), next to a family with a child who really needed a diaper change.  It's funny how, as a parent, you get used to things.  I remember smelly diapers not being particularly offensive when my kids were small... does this mean I'm getting old and less tolerant? (Asked the woman who refers to herself as a bitter hag...)
5. I stupidly forgot food for race morning so we had to go out after dinner and get some bagels, peanut butter and bananas. Due to the two big convention-type things going on at the hotel, there was zero parking available.  We parked "creatively" and were very glad that the car was still there the next morning.
6. And finally, the husband has been under the weather all week and decided (wisely) to skip the half marathon. Instead he was my cheerleader and paparazzi.  He rocks. I love that man!!

The start of the race.

So, as you may or may not know, my last few long runs have been absolute suckfests, which made me a little nervous heading into this one. I decided I was just going to run on feel, and not worry about trying to meet any type of specific time goal.  I kept GarminElectra covered, not that I can see her very well anyway what with my aging eyes and all, and I ran with tunes.  I can't remember the last time I used my iPod in a race.  It was a huge help!  I may have to make that a habit.

I started with the 2:15 pace group thinking that would be an easy enough pace for me to keep. They started out faster than I was comfortable with so I just let them go on ahead. Eventually, I caught up with the group and ran alongside them for a few miles, which was fun. The pacer was hilarious and kept us all laughing.  Then I started slowly moving ahead feeling GREAT the whole time. Before I knew it, I was heading onto the football field and crossing the finish line.  With a shiny new PR!! Official time was 2:12:26, exactly 3 minutes faster than the hellish Get Lucky 21k.

The weather was great: 40s, overcast, drizzle at the beginning which turned into steady rain pretty quickly. A bit of a headwind in some spots, which became a lovely tailwind when we were heading back to the stadium. I felt pretty badass when I was done - running that far in the rain always makes me feel like a hardcore runner, despite my slow pace!

Although you can't tell, yes, I am
actually RUNNING here.
My splits:

Avg Pace

Heading for the finish line and feeling like
such a tough chick running after 13.1 miles in the rain!
And is it just me, or do my hand warmers give me
shrunken doll hand syndrome a la Kirsten Wiig on SNL?
This was a really fun race - the whole town gets into it, lots of spectators, neighborhoods handing out orange slices, candy and one group was even handing out GU.  Little kids, elderly folks, local high school and college track teams...... they all braved the wind and rain, held their hands out for high fives and just generally provided lots of support and encouragement.... I love races like that! And the course was great too, mostly flat, went along the Mississippi River, through a park (it was a nice break to run on grass!), through a country club, and alongside some gorgeous gardens.  I'd definitely run this one again.  

But perhaps I'll pick a different hotel.

Oh! And here's a little bonus for you:

The husband took video of me running!!  Now you can see my su-WEET leg-floppy running style!