Archive | “long” runs RSS feed for this section

Everyone Else Is Doing It … Operation Jack 6 Hour Challenge “Race” Recap

31 Oct

Let it be known that I had no intention of running a race this weekend. None at all. In fact, I had no intention of doing anything that wasn’t casually work my way through my last long run before NYC and then napping. But at the beginning of last week, some sassy lady friends peer pressured me on twitter to run in the Richard Leary 6-Hour Challenge this weekend. I am such a sucker for friends and sunshine and shiny medals so, obviously, I was in.

Operation Jack is a pretty amazing organization and if I am seriously considering running the Operation Jack 1/2 Marathon as a satellite race this year.  The idea behind the 6 Hour Challenge was to run as many laps as possible around a 1.09 mile loop in 6 hours. Whoever ran the most loops won. Now, obviously, I had no intention of winning. I had every intention of running my 8ish miles with friends and snacks. I was supposed to get down to Irvine at around 7:30 am but, well, Saturday night happened and I rolled up around 10. By the time I got there, Heather and Cha Cha were just about finished with their laps. I started running and Sarah caught up with me. We ran a lap together and chatted about NYC and life. Second time ever running with someone and it was super speed demon Sarah. Excellent.

After we all finished our laps (Heather, Sarah and Cha Cha all KILLED double digit runs), we sat on a blanket in the sunshine and watched the other runners demolish their laps. We chatted about things Heather finds creepy (everything) and I discovered Cha Cha and I can never watch sports together. It’s cool.

sarah took a picture. i'm a really bad blogger, so i'm stealing hers.

 About the actual run … well, it wasn’t good. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t good. It felt really hard. Way harder than 7.63 miles should have. That made me really uncomfortable about next [or this? oh gosh, it’s this weekend isn’t it] weekend. There were some weird things going on with my hamstrings. Not pain exactly, but it didn’t feel good. My loops alternated between 10:30 and 9:45. The 9:45 loops felt great. The 10:30 loops felt like crap. This is almost definitely all in my  head. I’ve had the taper tantrums like crazy. I know I have to trust my training and that I’m ready for this. I just wish my legs would remember that …

Even with a crappy run, though, Sunday was absolutely amazing. It was a really well run race put on for a great cause [both Autism research and the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors]. But most importantly, the company was great. Those Ragnar ladies, they’re pretty awesome =)

Advertisements

Let the Taper Begin …. Again!

20 Oct

I finished my final “long” long run of the training cycle last weekend. 20 miles miles in a little under 3:40 which should put me nicely on pace for a sub-5 hour (I really just want to finish, let’s not kid ourselves).

Starting my second round of tapering in the same training cycle is a weird feeling. I’ve already experienced the taper tantrums once and to be honest, I’m not looking forward to another couple of anxious weeks where all I do is worry about whether I’m going to be able to finish. I’m still not entirely convinced I can run a marathon – me, the girl who used to make up every excuse in the book to get out of gym class, who was the only girl in my sorority who didn’t love the gym. If the me from 10, even 5 years ago could see me now, I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t recognize herself.

The only good thing about doing this a second time is that I know what to expect. I know the little voices in my head and I know what they’re going to say. I just have to stay positive, trust in my training to get me to mile 20 and trust the adrenaline to get me through the last 6.2 miles.

And if I hate it, I never have to do it again, right? … Right?

Product Review: Nuun Electrolyte Tablets

27 Sep

Now that I’ve been running longer and longer distances, I’ve found that just drinking water on my long runs isn’t quite cutting it. Here’s my problem – I really like water and I really dislike sugary drinks. I don’t drink a ton of soda or juice. And I REALLY don’t like Gatorade. By itself it’s tolerable, but when I’m running, it just makes me want to throw up. I’ve never really used it during training at all. I accidentally tried it during the PCRF 1/2 Marathon with disastrous results.

But I felt like I needed something extra during this season’s training. I was running more in the heat and it felt like I was drinking obscene amounts of water that didn’t seem to help at all. So I figured I’d give Gatorade another try. Maybe if I cut with a lot of water, I’d like it more. Nope. I went all the way down to 1/4 Gatorade and 3/4 water and I felt like I was gagging every time I drank it. It left a syrupy taste in my mouth that I just couldn’t get rid of. But I did notice that having SOMETHING did seem to help my runs a little (although it’s definitely possible it was all in my head). Enter nuun.

Hello, Lover

I had heard about nuun all over the internets [I follow a bunch of the ladies on their Hood to Coast team among other things]. I loved the idea that nuun doesn’t contain sugar. I also loved that I could carry them in the little pouch of my water bottle – that meant that I could drink regular water, a nuun-filled bottle, and then more regular water. Excellent.

Still, though, I am very poor. Being very poor, I refuse to buy anything that is not on sale. While shopping at REI with a friend the other day, I came across a sale on nuun. How awesome! I grabbed 2 packages – Strawberry Lemonade and Tangerine Ginger. I tried the Strawberry Lemonade flavor after my 5k on Sunday (I really wanted to try it out and I was too excited to wait until an actual run). It had a very, very light taste to it. I was worried that because it had no sugar, the nuun would have that diet soda flavor to it. Luckily, it didn’t at all. It tasted really light. I was a happy, happy girl.

The real test came when I tried it out on my last long run. It was great! I know I don’t drink enough water when I run (largely because I’m afraid if I stop running to refill my water bottle, I’ll just stop). During my last few long runs, I’ve noticed that my fingers have gotten pretty swollen. I was hoping that by adding electrolytes, I could avoid that. Well, mission accomplished! I started with a bottle of nuun, switched to regular water and then finished up with a bottle of nuun. 15 miles later, no swelling. Success!

Overall, the nuun was fabulous! I’m seriously thinking about carrying it with me on race day. How do you hydrate on long runs?

And don’t forget to vote for our Ragnar team name!

Name Our Team!

27 Sep

All of your amazing suggestions have been compiled and we’ve thrown the Top 10 into a super awesome poll. Head over to Sarah’s blog and vote!

Our lives [ish] are in your hands!

Aren't we fabulous?

What’s in a name?

14 Sep

Have you checked out my new page “Where I’m Running”? It’s awesome, right?

You may have noticed that I’ve added a bunch of upcoming race – a 5 miler in NYC, another Tunnel to Towers 5k, Long Beach (obvi) and …

Maybe I'm Crazy

I may or may not be out of my mind ...

Yep. Because I’m crazy. This lady convinced a group of us to run for 24 hours and 200+ miles all while riding in a van full of our stinky, sweaty glorious selves. It’s going to be pretty awesome.

We’re going to have 2 teams – the Ultra of 6 (don’t worry, I’m not on it) and the 12 Woman Team of Awesome (aka my team). But here’s where you come in. “Team of Awesome” doesn’t quite cut it. So we need YOU (our faithful readers – hi, Sister!) to come up with some kickass names for our kickass teams!

So leave your suggestions in the comments. We’ll be compiling our list of favorites and posting a top 10 poll on all of our blogs. The top 2 finishers will have the mega-super-stellar honor of naming our relay teams! AND because we’re living in a material world (and I am a material girl), you’ll win a sweet PRIZE full of all sort of running swag! Because everyone loves winning stuff!

So get brainstorming! And check out my awesome new teammates!!

Ultra Team

SkinnyRunner

Chacha

Margot

Sarah 

Pam

HauteRunningMama

12 Woman Team

Heather

Becka

Rose

PrettyFittie

Kate & Ang

Monica

BrokeRunner

Madison

Elisabeth

Danica

And me!!

Missing: Running Mojo

31 Aug

Last seen here eating 15 miles for breakfast. If lost, please return to Gidget. Reward.

No, seriously. Where did it go? My 15 mile run was amazing. The next day I got a random, spur of the moment invitation to New Orleans (which was amazing! Thanks, sister!). I ran a couple of times while I was there – including a long run that made me think I was actually going to die. I know that those runs sucked because my spoiled So Cal self isn’t used to suffocating, soul-crushing humidity. I totally get that. Logically anyway. But ever since then, all of my runs have felt sluggish. I just can’t seem to get my head in the game. My legs feel ok with the exception of some weird knee pain that I’ve been pretending isn’t there. But everything else about my runs has been craptacular. My lungs feel like they’re burning, I can’t catch my breath, I have a perennial stitch in my side and my head is just NOT there. Every time I take a step, I want to stop running. No bueno.

I’m hoping I just need a few days’ break. I have 18 miles on schedule for this weekend but I’ve already made the executive decision that I’ll be ok with anything over 15. I don’t want to beat myself up and scare my running mojo away. I figure if I keep pretending everything is sunshine and rainbows, I can make it so. What, it doesn’t work that way? Psh.

Where do you go to find your running mojo? Anyone have any to spare?

Long Run Fail

27 Aug

I was supposed to run 16 miles this morning. I made it 4 and every single step my knee hurt. I’m trying really hard not to panic. I’ve been icing and rolling and ibuprofen-ing. I may or may not try to make up the rest of the miles. Part of me thinks it might be better to rest it for a couple of days and see what happens.

REALLY trying not to panic.