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>Tramps like us, baby we were born to run

12 Feb

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Workout: 5 miles, 53:50

5 miles down and it feels pretty great! I had originally planned on running this nice and easy, hoping for about an 11:40 pace. After my last treadmill run I decided I’d be ambitious and aim for an 11 minute pace – still slower than my weekday runs but faster than I had been running. I am a new convert to the idea that you really don’t know how fast you can run until you try. Then, I talked to my dad. While you’d never know it to look at him now, my dad used to be a pretty good cross-country runner. He suggested I run my first mile with an 11 min pace and then see if I could kick it up to 10 for the middle miles and back down to 11 for the last mile. At first I was really unsure. Me? Run more than 2 10 min miles? Surely you jest. He reminded me that I didn’t think I could run one 10 min mile, let alone 2, so maybe 3 wasn’t completely outside the realm of possibility (hence my new speed philosophy above).

I got up and out this morning at around 8, which is probably still too late to start but is a vast improvement over last week’s 11:15 debacle. I decided to go running at a park by Moondoggie’s house because a) I was there and b) his neighborhood doesn’t have sidewalks. Now. I have done all of my running, ever, almost exclusively on streets. I have a hard time working up motivation to drive somewhere to go running, so I just map runs from my apartment. It’s not always awesome, but it gets the job done. So I was both excited and nervous to run on an actual running path. What if it was really empty and I got raped by a crazy man? I tried to convince Moondoggie he wanted to come with me, but he not so politely declined. Then I got nervous about the actual stopping. I usually end up stopping once or twice per “long” run to wait for lights. Would I be able to cover the distance without these 15 second breaks? My knee hadn’t been loving me all week, what if it hurt in the middle of the loop and I couldn’t just hop a bus back to my car? These are the ridiculous things I think about.

Well, all of my fears were unfounded. In fact, the park was PACKED! This was both awesome and frustrating. I love people watching so I never got bored, which was awesome. I loved running on the path because I knew it was a 5 mile loop, so I didn’t have to worry – I could just follow the curve of the road! There was a Team in Training group run going on, which was both great to see and really obnoxious. I think TNT is a great organization. My sister is training to run her first half with them and she loves them. They raise money for an amazing cause and teach people some really great things about running. In that respect, it was inspiring to see so many TNTers out and running. But. There were a couple of things about the way they had organized their run that really bothered me. First, they were running in fairly large groups. I’m more of a solo runner myself but I can understand the benefits of running with a group. However, it sucked that they were 4 or 5 abreast. This made it really difficult to pass. I was also taken aback by their attitude. They set up some sort of checkpoint/finish line area about 1/2 way around the loop. They had a canopy set up with gatorade and a cheering section. I think that’s great. I’d love it if every long run felt like a race! As I approached, I noticed they were cheering on all of the TNTers who passed. When I passed, the leader (maybe?) said, “Oh, not HER. Don’t cheer for HER, she’s not one of us.” Um, thanks, lady! I certainly wasn’t expecting them to cheer for me, but I was very put off by her holier than thou attitiude. I wanted to respond, “Hey, I’ve given tons of money to your organization, lady!”

Anyway, the run went pretty well! As you can tell from the timing, I didn’t quote make my 11-10-10-10-11 plan. I haven’t uplaoded Henry’s data yet, but I know I was in the 10s for the middle miles which I’ll 100% take. When I was training for the half, my 5 mile time was around 62 minutes. The fastest I’ve EVER run 5 miles was 58:32 about 4 years ago, so this felt pretty amazing. The path was a little hillier than I anticipated and my left knee didn’t love that, but all in all an excellent run!

Now I’m off to enjoy a beautiful 80 degree So-Cal weekend! How’d your “long” runs go?

Edit: Holy typos, Batman! Sorry about that, that’s what I get from trying to blog from my phone in the car!

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>So you had a bad day

9 Feb

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I want to say I had an awesome run this morning. I did not. All day Monday my knees hurt and they were still feeling a little wonky yesterday. Coupled with a broken elevator at work (seriously, multi-million dollar law firm?), I was toying with the idea of completely cutting out my run today. Then I remembered I’m fat and toyed with the idea that I’d just cut it to one mile. I hadn’t quite decided by the time I went to bed. Well, when my alarm went off and I snoozed it for 45 minutes, that pretty much decided it for me. As it was, I would have to haul butt to get even a mile in. I really wanted to just not go and take my time and look pretty and not feel rushed (like it seems I do every minute of every day lately). But I would really prefer not to be fat, so off I went. I ran my regular mile route and it SUCKED. S to the U to the CKED, sucked. First, there was a dog-walker walking 4 small yappy dogs who refused to move out of may way, forcing me to run on the grass which made my knees hurt (weird, right? Aren’t soft surfaces supposed to be better?). My sunglasses kept slipping down my face. I felt like I was working it only to discover that I was running pretty darn slowly.  Then I almost got run over by a delivery truck that was pulling out of a driveway. I spent a solid 5 minutes yelling at him about looking both ways before pulling out. I 100% used language that would make my grandmother blush (well, not MY grandmother, she’s pretty hardcore. But probably your grandmother). He stoically looked out the windshield and refused to look at me. Excellent.
When I got home, I proceeded to fumble with my keys. It looked like somehow my key got bent and it wasn’t fitting into the lock and I started to panic at the idea of having to wake up my roommate. Then I realized I was trying to open the front door with the mailbox key. Superb. I finally got inside, showered, put on fancy new jeans and fancy new shoes, looked almost skinny and sort of felt better. Sort of. However, I still can’t shake the feeling that the day started off crappy and it’s only going to get worse. I’m trying not to make it a self-fulfilling prophecy, so even though it made a few minutes late to class this morning, I put on makeup and got coffee on my way in. It’s going to be 80 degrees in LA today. I have a 6 hour break in between classes that I usually spend holed up in the libs, but I think today I will go get a manicure. It’s the little things.
Do you let a bad run get you down? How do you shake that feeling, or does it just haunt you for the rest of the day?

>A Nice Little Monday

7 Feb

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I sat around for a solid 45 minutes this morning after Moondoggie left, in my running clothes, willing myself to get up and out. Last night while watching the Super Bowl, I ended up doing a ton of random exercises … abs, arms, legs, whatever I was feeling. I was in a bad place and felt like I needed to sweat it out (more on that in a later post, up today I hope!). I don’t usually do a ton of strength work, so that led to one sore Gidget this morning.
When I started my run, Henry the Garmin was being all wonky. I have it set to auto-pause if I go slower than 20 min. miles (because that probably means I’m stopped at a light somewhere) and it kept auto-pausing and auto-resuming for the first ½ mile or so. This is a route I run all the time, so thankfully I wasn’t really worried about screwing up my distance, but because it wasn’t registering my distance right it wasn’t registering my pace right either. I couldn’t figure out how fast I was going, but I knew it was too fast. I tried to pull back but I soon realized that I could finish the 2 miles in under 20 minutes. Now, most of you out there in the running blog world are super speedy (even if you think you aren’t!), but I really am legitimately slow. I have NEVER run a mile at a 10 min. pace, let alone 2! I kicked it up as high as I could and while my Garmin claims I did 2 miles in 20:46, the dailymile.com map says I did 2.11 miles in 20:46, so I’m obviously going with that number! Huzzah!
I was then uber-productive, going grocery shopping and buying fancy new shoes (that’s productivity, right?). Then I popped into the office for a bit (on my off day, because I’m that cool) and am now “reading” for class later. My left knee is feeling a little IT Band-twingy. I’ll have to ice/stretch/roll when I get home. I’m supposed to go to dance class tonight but I may skip it. Last week we did a lot of moves that made my knees not love me the next day and I’d rather not take that chance.
Also, I think I’m starting Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred tonight. Has anyone ever tried it? I’m sure it’s ridiculously hardcore. I’m trying to amp up my weight loss goals a little and I really want to work on adding some strength training into my routine. What kind of strength training do you do?

>Morning runs and musings

3 Feb

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Woke up extra early to run this morning before a big day at work. It was cold! I only had one mile on the schedule (lame, I know) but I ran it blistering fast … for me anyway! I ordered fancy new compression sleeves that came last night! They seem super awesome and I’ll try to get a review up soon. I wore them for a couple of hours last night and I’m totally rocking them under my suit today!

Moondoggie surprised me by coming over last night to watch Dexter and cuddle (we’re 2 seasosns behind, dont judge). That made it especially difficult to get up this morning. I feel bad leaving him all snuggled in bed while I sneak out to get a run in. Morning cuddling is my favorite part and it kind of sucks having to sacrifice that, but with a 14 hour day ahead of me, I didn’t have much of a choice. Moondoggie has been amazingly understanding about it and says he likes how dedicated I am, but still.

What are you sacrificing for your running?