Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fall 2013 training week 13: 3 weeks to go

Oh boy, we are getting down to the wire now. Race day transportation issue now resolved: Nicole offered to drive, which is awesome of her, but after discussing with my husband we decided why not book a hotel near the start/finish for Saturday night? That way we can go out for a nice pasta dinner and I don't have to worry about driving in early in the morning. So we'll be ditching the kids with a helpful sister in law and spending the night in downtown Toronto. It should make race morning less stressful, assuming I can find Patty before the race starts! I'm trying to convince him to sign up for the 5k, but no success on that yet.

Monday: Well deserved rest day after the 10k PB. Legs felt surprisingly good, considering; I probably could have gone to TRX class. But I decided I'd earned a day off.

Apropos of nothing, these 100 calorie Wholly Guacamole snack packs are awesome. (what, I didn't take a lot of pictures this week)
 Tuesday: Since Patty and I will most likely run Scotia together (which is TERRIFYING because Patty is planning a 5:20/km pace, but hey, go big or go home.), we met up for 10k with 6k at race pace tempo. At 5 am. Dear god we are stupid. Felt decent enough, considering the 5 am thing, plus the fast 10k on Sunday. I'm not hugely confident that I can hold that kind of pace over 21.1, but I guess you never know until you try. Splits on the 6k tempo were 5:22, 5:28, 5:19, 5:24, 5:27, 5:16. Touch slow, but I blame the 5 am thing.

Should have done TRX and/or kettlebells, but I had a really stressful day and just was not feeling up to it at all.

Wednesday: This was a 'why the hell am I doing this' run. 4:30 in the morning is just too early, especially now that it's not hot anymore. I spent the first 20 minutes thinking about how utterly dumb it was that I got up that early to run. I'm never going to win a race, so what the hell is the point? By the end, though, I felt pretty good. I run because I love to run, and because I want to improve myself. No, I'll never win a race, but I know I can get better, and if that means running at 4:30 am, then that's what I'm going to do.

My faithful headphones completely disintegrated during this run. I guess almost 3 years of abuse was enough for them.
 Thursday: Track. But I wanted to run at lunch and the track at work is technically off limits (not sure how enforced that is - but to be honest, I have no interest in sharing a track with a bunch of varsity athletes). Hit up one of the local trails instead that I knew would give me an uninterrupted and flat 1k. First interval in 4:32, oops. I figured when I saw that number that I would pay for that one, and pay I did. Next three were 4:47, 4:56, 4:56, and then I couldn't finish the fifth repeat - did about 700m at a 4:55 pace and just could not go on. Oh well, it is what it is. Finished a total of 10k and it was overall a good workout.

Fall colour! Is it just me or are the leaves later than usual changing colour this year?
 Skipped strength work again for absolutely no good reason.

Friday: Rest day. Ate SO MUCH FOOD. Must be a peak week or something, I'm a hobbit having 3 breakfasts and still so hungry.

Original image credit.

Saturday: Long run with Patty. We agreed to take this one easy peasy lemon squeezy, since we both felt like we needed a confidence building long run instead of a sufferfest. It worked out really well, and we even did a few faster km at the end - not bad for 23k!

We amused ourselves through much of the run by spotting overdressed runners. Seriously, people, it was 12C - which is NOT THAT COLD. We were both in tank tops, and were comfortable with the temperature. Patty went with a skirt and I was in crops, but frankly should have gone skirt too (I wasn't overly hot in the crops, but the weather was such that a skirt would be been perfect). We kept seeing people in long sleeves, which I kind of get because it is September and we all can't wait to break out our Around the Bay shirts to show off our membership in that particular club, but jackets? long pants? tights? sweatshirts? Y'all be CRAZY.

It will look like this soon enough. As much as I'm getting bored of my summer gear, let's not rush into things here people. (Original image source)
 Sunday: Recovery run 8k. Legs had no interest in the recovery part - every time I glanced at my watch it read 5:3x or 5:4x. Since I seemed to be incapable of slowing down, I stopped a bunch of times to take pictures and keep things a little closer to 'recovery'.

A multi use trail is a such a good use of this powerline corridor. Beautiful spot to run, even if it does have a lot of stupid hills.

Weekly summary: 65.5 km run in 6:28:02. No weight training due to laziness.

One more hard week of training before tapering. Eep. This week features not just my first trail race, but also my first relay, which I am super crazy excited about! The main goal is not to get injured while doing it. And have a lot of fun with my team (Sam, Phil, and Kim).

Monday, September 23, 2013

Oakville 10k Race Report

Oakville half marathon and 10k, Sept 2013

Saturday for kit pickup was rain, rain, rain. Unfortunately, the expo for this race is outdoors. Glad I remembered to grab an umbrella before I left - too bad the only one I could find was my 4 year old's Hello Kitty umbrella. Awesome.

Expo in the park. Hello Kitty umbrella not pictured due to embarrassment.
Picked up my kit, briefly checked out the vendors (I had been hoping to maybe get discounted registrations on some spring races, but none of the ones I wanted were there), got away from the 50% off sale rack from the one running store with my wallet intact (close call on that one, they had some nice Moving Comfort tanks).

Good kit. The coupon for free hard boiled eggs will definitely get used. I also appreciate a race that has women's specific shirts, even if the shirt is not my favourite shade of blue.

Sunday morning Amy picked me up early, and then we headed off to get Patty and Sam - The Burlington Skirt Brigade loves to carpool. Amy offered to drive, because she's way nicer than the rest of us, who tend to yell 'not me' and hope someone else offers. Finding parking at races blows. But Amy had a secret weapon, having reserved a spot in her friend's driveway, which happened to be right by the race start. SCORE.

Why don't races have a best dressed competition? C'mon, we're ADORABLE.
 The 10k started first, so Amy and I jogged an easy km or so to warm up, mostly because it was freaking cold. I was wishing for a pair of throw away gloves, but I knew once we started running I'd be fine. Listened to Oh Canada, milled around for a few minutes, and then we were off for our 10k.

Dorking out in the start corral. I gotta get a new move that isn't double thumbs up.
 Once we started I ran about 300m then glanced at my watch; 4:44/km, too fast. Slowed down and hit a few buttons to set my watch to display calories burned instead of pace, since I wanted to run this race more by feel. My watch always shows the pace briefly after each km, so I knew I could check at those points to see how I was doing.

I don't know if it was because people actually seeded themselves properly, or because of the nice wide road, but I hardly spent any time maneuvering around slower runners - a welcome change from some races! Looking in your direction, Midsummer. So the first few kms went very smoothly. I was totally in the zone, comfortable with my pace and feeling great. I kept catching glimpses of Amy's ponytail not far ahead of me - she's a bit faster than I am, but as long as I could see her, I knew I was keeping up a good pace.

km 1-3: 5:13, 5:10, 5:13

My watch beeped off km 3 at least 100m before the actual km marker. Shit. I hate when my watch is that off early in a race, it makes it hard to trust the paces. I resolved to ignore my watch until 6k, and just zoned out, one foot in front of the other. In control, not too fast.

km 4-6: 5:10, 5:13, 5:13 Hello consistency! That's a first, usually I'm all over the place.

I had set up my playlist for this race with my most motivating songs starting at around km 6. I really wanted to get a negative split on this one, and figured I'd try some musical help to power through the last 4k. (Eminem's Berzerk? Put it on your running playlist right now.) Somewhere in here there were a bunch of houses with 'SLOW DOWN' signs on their lawns, and I thought SCREW YOU I'M NOT SLOWING DOWN! Then I realized it was probably the homeowners trying to get traffic to slow down, not runners. Duh.

km 7: 5:05

Still feeling good. Picked up the pace. My watch was almost 200m off the markers so I was ignoring it and just looking at the total time as I hit each marker, doing mental calculations to figure out if I had a shot at going under 52 minutes. Math while running is never a good idea, but I was pretty sure I was going to be really, really close to 52 minutes and used that as motivation to pick up the pace a bit.

km 8: 4:55

Self doubt started to creep in. My breathing was getting harder to control, and my brain started whispering things like 'you could walk for a bit and still get under 54 minutes, you have lots of time to play with and still PB. 53 minutes would be a fine time'. SHUT UP BRAIN. Don't tempt me with your bad thoughts.

I had spent some time before the race trying to figure out how to handle this exact situation. Closing in on the finish, when things start to hurt, the 'let's just stop' thoughts always arrive, and I've never dealt with them well. This leads to things like my epic slowdowns in the last 5k of Midsummer and the Mississauga half. This time, though, I was prepared.

I started telling myself 'you went through childbirth without drugs. Twice. That hurt a hell of a lot more than this. If you can do that, you can run another measly 10 minutes.' Over and over. 'If you did that, you can run another 8 minutes. You can run another 5 minutes. 5 minutes is nothing.'

Amazingly, it worked! With a bit of an assist from Ms. Katy Perry and the song Roar (thank you Amy for that suggestion).

km 9-10: 5:05, 4:55 extra 200m: :54 (pace 4:46)

Double thumbs up AGAIN. I'm so predictable. But look how happy! Coming up on the finish, knowing I'd run a great race.

Chip time: 51:56.2 <--YEAH!
Gun time: 52:07
Category place: 13/108 <--hey, that's not too shabby
Gender place: 36/305
Overall place: 110/541

A spectator at 7k told me she liked my socks. Hells yeah.
I am SO FREAKING HAPPY with how this went. Not just the final overall time, but the fact I ran a well paced race. I felt great through most of it, I ran even splits through the first 6k, successfully picked up the pace for the last 4k, and I did not give in to the suck during the tough last two km.This is huge for me - usually with races I go out too fast, and the last quarter of the race is spent just trying to stay upright, nevermind actually speeding up and running my fastest km at the end. The fact I ran the last km at a 4:55 pace is a major breakthrough. I can run a sub 5 minute km on tired legs. *mind blown*

Amy had a terrific race too - I kept catching glimpses of her ahead of me. She finished just over 51 minutes (and 12th for our age group, bumping me to lucky 13), which made her easy to find right after we were done, since she was still catching her breath when I crossed the finish. Clearly the real reason I ran this race fast was so my ride home couldn't get away!
I hope the Mississauga Marathon can handle our awesomeness.
We had some time before Sam was due to finish the half marathon, so after grabbing our water, bananas, and protein bars we headed back to the car to change into less sweaty clothes, then cheered for the winners of the half and waited for Sam. You can read about her race on her blog when she writes her recap (spoiler alert: she killed it. right here! Sam is amazing. Plus we unexpectedly got to see Nicole! Who was even wearing a skirt! You can't resist the skirt. You will be assimilated. And Patty totally nailed her pacing gig (even if the finish line announcer was kind of douchy about her gun time), so a successful day all around.

Oooooooh, sparkly.
I would definitely run one of the Oakville races again. The 10k is fast, pretty much flat, and NOT the dreaded double loop (which is getting to be unusual for 10ks. stupid double loops). Definitely a great choice for a fast fall 10k or half marathon. Well organized, lots of porta potties (important) and close to home. Thumbs up to Oakville! It's going to be hard to choose between Milton and Oakville next year for an early fall half, assuming I want to run one.

And now, of course, the big question looms: what goal time to aim for at the Scotia half. Hmmmmmmmm.

Bonus picture: FINE. I know this is what everyone really wants to see.
This is what happens when I can't find my rain jacket.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Fall 2013 training week 12: 4 weeks to go

Decision made: Road 2 Hope it is. I like having a backup race in case my A is a total crash and burn, plus Sam offered to drive (SOLD!). I note no one is jumping up and down offering to drive to Scotia, though. Shit.

Monday: 11k tempo run on the rail trail at work. I always think to myself when I start this run that the grade of the rail trail isn't that bad, and I always get to the turn around and it gets a million times easier and I'm all oh yeah, no wonder the first half felt so hard, it's uphill the whole damn way. Did 2 x 2k tempo sections, plus ran the last few k relatively fast to try and get the feeling of speed into my legs before Sunday's 10k. Splits on the tempo sets were 5:13, 5:09 in the first set, then 4:58, 5:05. Going downhill is easier. Imagine that. Most of the other km were in the 5:30/5:40 range, and I pushed myself on tired legs during the last km to and got that one done in 5:13. Good prep for Sunday's 10k race.

Probably not good that the rail trail deer are so unafraid of people! Below, the elevation map of the rail trail. It doesn't look like it's a hill while I'm running on it, but apparently it is. I think that map really exaggerates it, but whatever, it looks cool.

TRX class in the evening. Some really cruel moves with an exercise ball. Ouch. Trainers are so mean.

Tuesday: Rest. Rest is good.

Wednesday: With no LSD this week due to the 10k race Sunday, I wanted to make sure I got in a decent mid distance run. 14k at 4:30 am, yeah. Running is stupid. It was like a skunk convention, I saw three of them and smelled a fourth (adrenaline dump: that moment where you realize, no, that's not a cat, it's a skunk with its tail raised). Good feeling run, overall, and pleasantly cold out. Almost needed gloves!

Pretty new toys

Wednesday evening I played with my new toys, the kettlebells I found for a ridiculously cheap price at Big Lots. The handles could stand to be more rounded, but considering how little I paid for them, I'm not complaining. I used this video, cautiously so as not to injure myself, and spent a fair amount of time checking my form in the mirror. These make a really nice addition to my home gym - with the TRX, kettlebells, pull up bar, and an exercise ball, I should be able to hit all the major muscle groups pretty well for some good strength training. Although probably not using all that equipment at once. One of my plans for the 'off season', once my fall races are done, is to get in 8 weeks or so of some really quality strength work.

Thursday: Easy 8k at lunch to Princess Point and back. It was humid again (GAH), and I had some delayed onset muscle soreness developing in some very interesting places thanks to the kettlebells, but overall a decent feeling run.

So glad it was overcast, it would been really unpleasant in the full sun.

Friday: Rest! Worried a bit about the quantity of DOMS I was having from that kettlebell workout, crossed my fingers it would be gone by Sunday. Looked at weather. Considered race outfits. Debated ordering a fun shirt from Adidas that I don't really need, but am kind of obsessing over. Oh, and went to work and did all that stuff I'm paid to do.

Looks good, other than the wind. There's always something.

Saturday: Rest! It was nice to wake up on a rainy Saturday morning and curl up on the couch in my comfy clothes with a pot of tea and my iPad. People who don't run may be on to something, yo. DOMS was almost gone from the kettlebell workout Wednesday, thank goodness.

Note sweet Around the Bay shirt and lack of ponytail. Living the dream.
Followed the Zoo Run results on twitter to see how my brother would do, which was fun. He didn't quite crack the top 100, finishing 112th. Considering he's been having some injury issues, I think that's pretty damn awesome! Way to go little bro!

Sunday: Race day. Just a little 10k personal best, that's all. Race report is coming!

Weekly summary: 43.3 km run in 4:05:06. TRX workout and a kettlebell workout.

Not long now before the A race! Peak mileage weeks ahead.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Decisions, decisions

Back at the beginning of the year, I set the somewhat arbitrary goal of running 13 races in 2013. Why? Why not. Matching numbers make my brain happy. This may be why I ended up doing data analysis for a living.

I now find myself with 9 races done, and registered for 3 more (Oakville 10k, Run for the Toad, and of course the big goal race, the Scotiabank half marathon). So I need to register for one more race to reach my goal.

There are two possibilities for the last race, both races I have on my 'local races I definitely want to run at least once' list. The Road 2 Hope half marathon, and the Boxing Day 10 miler. I don't even want to total up how much I've spent on race fees already this year, so it's hard to justify spending the cash on both races.

Road 2 Hope

Pro: gives me another shot at a fall half marathon if Scotia is a disaster

Con: only 2 weeks after Scotia, which isn't ideal for taking another run at a PB, or improving any PB I do set at Scotia

Pro: looks like most of the Burlington Be-skirted Brigade will be running it (Amy, Sam, possibly Patty), plus other fun people like Nicole. Having friends to hang out with at the start and then to congratulate/commiserate with at the finish rocks.
Con: not sure how my husband will feel about being abandoned yet again with the kids on a Sunday morning
Pro: downhill course = possibility of blazing fast time
Con: expensive, don't know if they do good shirts or not to justify the cash
Pro: seems like a waste to train this hard and then only run one half marathon this fall
Con: knowing I'm registered for this one might make it too easy to quit/slack during Scotia (not really that worried about this, but you never know)

Boxing Day 10 miler

Pro: pajama pants!

Con: do I really want to run 10 miles on Boxing Day?
Pro: cheaper than Road 2 hope
Con: don't know who else might be running it (Sam?); could be lonely if no one else I know signs up
Pro: I often run part of the route on lunch runs, so it's familiar
Con: there's a really nasty hill
Pro: I can call Christmas dinner pre-race carb loading
Con: will probably eat so much I have to be rolled to the start line

So yeah, now that I type all that out, I'm pretty sure I want to do Road 2 Hope, mostly because of the social aspect. For an introvert who took up running partially because it gives me lots of alone time I sure have acquired a lot of awesome running friends! Not sure how that happened but it's great.

And who am I kidding, there's a pretty good chance I'll end up signing up for Boxing Day anyway, even if that will mean 14 races instead of 13 and the numbers loving side of my brain is howling in agony.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Fall training week 11 : 5 weeks to go

Back on track after the sore hip thing - determined to get over 60k again for the week. The countdown to the Scotiabank Waterfront Half is on!

Monday: another beautiful morning in Chicago. Headed out the opposite direction of the day before and was rewarded with some different, also spectacular views. Did some tempo, but it was really all about enjoying Chicago. I'm now rather jealous of the runners I know who travel a lot - it turns out running is a great way to get to know a place. Goal pace was 5:25/km. 2k warmup, 3k tempo (5:21, 5:30, 5:19), break for a photo op, 3k tempo (5:27, 5:36 - nasty headwind, 5:53 - nastier headwind), 2k cooldown, for 10k total.

Just fabulous. The city, not my weird deer in the headlights expression.

Tuesday: last chance to run in the Windy City. Tired, not great food choices over the previous couple of days, and definitely under hydrated, so I took it slow and took a ton of pictures. The best was that this was the first clear day, so I finally got to see a beautiful Lake Michigan sunrise, and then the way the dawn light reflected off the skyscrapers and bridges - well, I can see why there were a ton of photographers all over the place. Chicago, I will be back! The Chicago marathon is officially on my must do someday list. I ended up running 11.5 very enjoyable km.

Seriously, I could have put like 50 pictures here. So many amazing things to see!

Someday, I'm running this marathon.
Wednesday: REST. So tired from travelling.  So happy to give my kids big hugs and lots of kisses! Felt terrible all day until just before bed I downed a huge glass of water and a glass of NUUN. Felt a ton better and considering I did not wind up having to run to the bathroom during the night, I was clearly pretty dehydrated. Someday I will remember that when feeling vaguely awful, a big glass of water is often the cure.

Thursday: Track. Up early, out the door in under 7 minutes. Very easy jog to the closest track to see just how dark it was (VERY DARK) and then did four 1 km repeats. Super humid which I am so over. Please go away now, humidity. My legs were tired, my brain was tired, and my times on the 3rd and 4th repeat were sucktacular. (4:53, 4:51, 5:04, 5:00). Whatever. Moving on.

TRX Thursday evening since I've been slacking on my strength training. Pistol squats, sprinter starts, lunges, hamstring curls, rows, pushups, assorted planks and crunches.

Friday: Rest day. Much needed.

Saturday: Met up with Amy for a quick 2k, then joined Patty and Sam for another 22k. Perfect weather. One of those gorgeous cool clear fall days that I adore, absolutely the best for running. I even got to wear long sleeves! Love breaking out the fall wardrobe.There was a clear psychic connection between us as we all wore skirts and pink tops - fortunately very different shades of pink, so we didn't look quite as much like a gang (or, god forbid, cyclists) as we could have. Plus Patty missed the memo on compression socks.

Also one of the best feeling long runs I've done in a while. I finished the 24k feeling energized and like I could do more, rather than spending the last 5k convincing myself not to walk. I suspect the second gel at 16k might have had something to do with it, as I've been using only one gel on my long runs recently. That may be a mistake. Overall a confidence building long run. Admittedly the scenery wasn't quite as great as Chicago, but the company was awesome and there was a nice sunrise over the lake and some good views of the skyway from Northshore. It's home and I love it.

Sunday: Easy recovery 8k to bump the weekly total up. One of these weeks I'll get smarter and stop running these in my stupidly hilly neighbourhood.

My pictures after Chicago were terrible this week, so here's my outfit from Sunday. The t shirt says 'RUN', just in case I forget what I'm doing and need a reminder.
Weekly summary: 64km run in 6:21:45. 1 TRX workout. Building up to that pre-race peak!

This upcoming week I'm running a 10k race. Haven't raced a 10k since the spring (where the race featured high winds and a torrential downpour), so I'm hoping for a shiny new PB. I hesitate to put any goals down, though, since that has failed so spectacularly the last two times. So I'm just going to shut up and run.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Fall training week 10. 6 weeks to go

My kind of crappy vacation week at the end of August got put into perspective when I found out a friend's kid got bitten by a rabid bat that week. Yeah. Perspective. (he's fine, just has to get a lot of needles with the rabies vaccine).

Monday: Labour Day! Which meant I could meet Patty at the entirely reasonable hour of 7 am for a run by the lake, rather than something godawful like 5 am. Took it easy in case my hip decided to act up (it was fine) and did 8k. The weather was horribly humid, so I was glad we were only doing 8k.

We waded into the lake to soak our calves after the run, which felt so good I had an impromptu ice bath when I got home in order to also do my quads and hips.

More foam rolling and ART stuff, which I plan to do every day for the next little while, since it seems beneficial. Plue we have Netflix now and I can watch old episodes of Futurama while I roll things out. Good news, everybody!

Tuesday: Back to school for the kids, back to work for me. Senior kindergarten and grade 3 for the girls, sniff. *obligatory where does the time go why are they so big waaaaaaaaah*

I was only off a week! How did all this work pile up?
The cold that was threatening on Saturday showed up full force Tuesday afternoon. GRRRRRRRRRRRRR. I was going to try some strength training but felt like shit so went to bed early. Really, if you have allergies, you should be exempt from getting a cold until allergy season has passed.

Wednesday: Up early after a lousy night's sleep (cold symptoms, bleeeeergh) to get in an easy run. But the temperature had dropped, it felt like fall, and as soon as I started running I felt amazing (honestly running is just the best treatment for cold symptoms - I feel great while I run and for a few hours afterwards). So I did a little bit of tempo just to see how things would feel. Hip felt normal, and running fast felt fantastic. YAY. 2k warmup, 3k tempo (5:24, 5:27, 5:16), 1k recovery, 2k tempo (5:40, 5:19), 2k cooldown. I was making it up as I went along, clearly. WTF with that 5:40?

Finally cool enough to try out my new pink compression socks, too. What, you've never had a visit from the Running Fairy?

Thursday: Lunch run, since my husband was out of town. Easy 9k on one of my favourite routes, on the Hamilton-Brantford rail trail. I wanted 10k but had a meeting and needed to leave a few minutes to shower, lest my stinky self cause the meeting to end prematurely. Wait, maybe I'm going about this all wrong...

Trail surface picture is for barefoot Alan, in case he wants to try running this trail.
Friday: Very unusual Friday long run.Weekend plans made it necessary to get it out of the way early. I started out planning a big 22k loop, then realized 4k in I couldn't remember if I'd applied bodyglide or not. After debating a bit just how bad things might get (answer: UGLY), I decided to do a 10k loop back around home, lube up, then a 12k out and back. It worked out well since it turned out I REALLY needed to go to the bathroom 9k in. It did mean more hills than I usually do on an LSD, but that's probably good for me.

Suddenly things look less Summer Green and and a little more fall.
Ice bath when I got home (hurts so good), lots of foam rolling/ART in the evening.

Saturday: Rest day because my husband and I had to catch a flight to Chicago! A mini-vacation without the kids, score! And, cheap, because the real reason I had to go to Chicago was for a conference, so most of my expenses were covered by work, and my husband used points for his flights.


Sunday: First day of the conference, but I was not going to miss the chance to run on the Chicago waterfront, so I headed out early to get in a short easy run. Amazing. I'm in love with this city! Ran past the aquarium, Soldier field, etc, and enjoyed the hell out of every step. It was windy but I didn't care because I was having such a good time drinking in the sights. Ended up doing 8.5 (or possibly 9, my watch was having a lot of trouble during the first ten minutes and I think dropped some distance). Now I'm eagerly anticipating 2 more runs before I have to leave. Only problem being I shorted myself one pair of running socks when I packed - might have to slip back out to the Magnificent Mile to correct that oversight before dinner Monday.

Weekly summary: 58k run in 5:41:23. And a trip to Chicago! No TRX or weights, oops. I will have to do better at that this week.

The week ahead: another 60k week ahead with two more Chicago runs (hopefully a tempo for one), track work Thursday, and another longer than half distance LSD. 

Song of the week: only one choice, Berzerk by Eminem. I knew within 10 seconds this song would be a fixture on my running playlists. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Fall 2013 training week 9. 7 weeks to go.

OMG THIS WEEK. Ugh. Some injury issues with my touchy hip. I am, of course, blaming that boardwalk from Midsummer. DAMN YOU BOARDWALK.

Ward's Island Boardwalk
I know, it doesn't look that evil. BUT IT IS. (original image here )
(OK, so the current issue actually started after last week's LSD, not at Midsummer, but I can't resist a chance to bitch about that boardwalk again)

Monday: Usually a rest day. However, I was planning to take the kids to the zoo on Tuesday, and the zoo is huge and there's a lot of walking. So doing a tempo run Tuesday morning seemed like a really bad idea and I moved it to Monday. My sore hip felt fine when I woke up so I decided I was OK to run.

Met up with Amy and we did 10k with 6k at tempo. The humidity was back (OH YAY) and there was wind and it was Monday and it was also 5 am, so frankly I'm impressed at our paces (even if we did stop for breaks 3k and 5k into the tempo). Our splits were 5:05, 5:05, 5:16 (gradual uphill through most of this km), 5:13, 5:10, 5:10. I'm thinking a 5:10/km pace may be possible for the Oakville 10k, which would be pretty awesome.

Best part of running on a Monday is zapping that Daily mile zero.

My troublesome hip felt great through the run, but by the end of the day was quite sore. I attempted to ignore it because it only really hurt while sitting. Walking, standing, and lying down it felt fine.

So I went ahead and did my usual TRX class Monday night, because why not (seriously, after the last couple of months of consistent TRXing, my arms look awesome. Thanks TRX!). Again, hip felt fine during the class, it was after when I sat down that it stiffened up and felt painful.

Tuesday: Zoo!!! Vacation week for me, and since we weren't planning to go away I wanted to do some fun activities with the kids. Tuesday was the zoo. Really hot, lots of walking. Needed about a gallon of water to rehydrate after that! But a really fun way to spend the day with my kids. Since I was on my feet walking most of the day, my hip felt fine.

We got lucky and there was no line to see the pandas! However it was super crowded and hot in the exhibit so I didn't try and get a better picture. Or even an in focus one.
Wednesday: Up early to get in an easy run before my husband had to leave for work. Wanted 12k but miscalculated when I set my alarm so only had time for 10k. Better than nothing! It was Humidity II: Electric Boogaloo out there. Just ridiculous. Heavy fog as well, which meant by the time I got home I was soaking wet from head to toe. Also it was creepy, I was half expecting zombies to come lurching out of the fog at me. All I got was a street sweeper, though, which was weird enough - either I run the exact same speed as a street sweeper, or the driver was fucking with me.

Pretty sure there's a zombie hiding behind that tree on the right.
My hip felt totally normal during the run, but once again later in the day the longer I spent sitting, the more it was hurting. By the end of the day Wednesday I had it wrapped in a heating pad to get some relief.

Thursday: Since my hip hurt so much on Wednesday, I decided to make Thursday a rest day from running. Which meant I got to sleep in, since I also didn't have to get up for work. No set time to get up? WHAT IS GOING ON HERE!!
My hip was again fine when I got up, but a little bit sore later in the day. Much better than Wednesday.

I was planning a TRX workout in the evening, but hadn't realized I'd be getting a tetanus shot at my physical Thursday afternoon. Since my arm was sore from the shot I decided to eat jelly beans instead, because that makes perfect sense. Jelly beans make the tetanus vaccine work better. Probably.

Friday: My hip felt OK late Thursday, but I'm trying this new thing where I don't just run through an obvious injury and instead let it fully heal. I know, CRAZY, right? So for the second day in a row I slept in (where 'slept in' means 'woke up at 6:30 and couldn't fall back asleep').

I figured biking would be a safe activity (ha ha ha). I set out to do a 20k ride, but 10k in it was clear cycling was aggravating my hip - it wasn't painful, but I could feel something not quite right in the problematic joint, which is never a good sign. So I packed it in and cycled home for a total of 13k. Did some serious foam rolling and self-ART with a tennis ball, which was fun, if your idea of fun is torturing yourself. Hip was still not feeling right, but much much better.

Then, the icing on the crap Friday cupcake? Getting a cold. Mega dosed vitamin C and made hot and sour soup, which seemed to help. And hey, if I have to get sick, might as well do it while injured.

Saturday: More rest from cardio. Bah. Did some upper body TRX stuff to stop myself from going insane. Amazing how quickly I get all withdrawl-y from the exercise endorphins. Possibly the hot and sour soup did the trick because the cold seemed to retreat, leaving just my usual late August allergies (yay).

The TRX wasn't a great workout thanks to my arm still being sore from Thursday's tetanus booster. This whole week is a mess, at least in terms of fitness. At least I had a lot of fun with the kids on vacation!

OW my poor arm. And obnoxiously lazing on a park bench because lying down doesn't aggravate my hip the way sitting does. Sorry to all the other park users for being weird.
Spent a lot of time with my foam roller and tennis ball working on my hip/inner thigh and did some stretching.

Sunday: Since my hip felt fine on Saturday, I did a slow 5k. Everything felt fine! Cautious optimism! My legs were weirdly tired Sunday afternoon, but in an 'I ran this morning' way, not an 'I'm injured' way.

Weekly Summary: 25k run in 2:24:48. 13k biked and 2 TRX workouts. Lowest run mileage in a week since May. Sigh. Oh well.

August Summary: Dang I really wanted to be over 200k for the month. Boo. 186.5 km run in 18:17:40.

Upcoming week: August was kind of disappointing all the way around. Both races were kind of sucky, ended with an injury. Here's hoping this week and month go better. C'mon September, let's be awesome.