Sunday, September 30, 2012

Good-bye September, I won't miss you.

September was a rough month.  Too many hours spent a work, not nearly enough hours spent running. One of the reasons this 3 day a week half marathon training program was so appealing was I knew this month was going to be tough.  Even with pulling 50+ hour work weeks I never missed a workout...I did fall behind on laundry and become a complete hermit never seeing many friends.  Priorities man, priorities.  So with a month to go I have more time to socialize and focus on running.  Long runs and track work is on target, I'll be honest and admit to struggling a bit with keep the pace on the longer tempos but still trying.  We'll see what race day brings...I'm still secretly hoping for a sub-2 hour performance, but will be happy with a strong run followed by lots of drinking and eating with friends!  Here's to a great October!!

Miles run today: 8

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Blackstone Valley Bike Path

If you haven't been there, go now.  If you haven't been in a while, go now.  It's beautiful and quickly becoming my new hangout for runs, it's only going to get nicer with the leaves changing.  We park in a lot right off 123, but there are a bunch of access points along the path.  For 6 miles today, I ran uninterrupted right along the river.  We were able to stop and scope out the geese as well as a turtle and some sunfish.  Other times runs have included breaks at the river's edge for some stick throwing.  The river along with a large field are perfect for 15 month old boys who need a break from the jogger.  Unlike the East Bay Bike Path there aren't nearly as many cross streets so you aren't stopping and starting over and over again.  And it seems a little quieter, that said it was a Thursday morning.  I'll never completely break up with the Eastside for runs but for now this is where I'll be:

Ran 6 miles and biked for an hour filled with hills.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

To marathon or not to marathon??

I'm really torn here.  About a month away from my half which means I'm totally over it and need to start worrying about what's next.  Last fall/winter/spring I was solely focused on the 70.3 stuff.  I think I'll likely do another one of those as well next year but want to do one next September which means I don't need to start training now.  Half marathons are fun but not enough work.  Watching Joe, Jeff and Fully train for their October marathons has got me thinking, but any time I get close enough to get excited I recall the pain.  Then there is the whole, I have a kid and not enough time for marathon training.  Stupid logic given that Joe is doing it now with the same kid and I trained for the 70.3 with said kid.  My marathon shows have been awful; filled with slowness, injury and bad form.  You think I'm a whiner now, just wait.  That said I'm fitter and faster than during previous marathon training periods, it would be nice to see if I could pull a 4:30-4:40 out of my ass.  If yes, then what race?  Late Jan/early Feb would fit nicely in the training calendar and allow me to match up with Kali for some long runs, but that leaves my only local option as Hyannis.  I'm not jazzed about Hyannis, there's nothing wrong with it, but nothing exciting either.  Do I play the over-worked-in-need-of-a-break-mom card and look at one that might require a weekend away....maybe even away from said kid???  Ah, but now we are taking about 18 mile runs in December and although December is not kind to bikers it's really cruel to distance runners as well. But then this keeps me fit through winter and then come late Feb I dive back into the tri stuff.  I just don't know.

Ran 6 miles today.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

What was I thinking?

Today was a tempo run and the schedule wasn't going to allow for a late morning run with the kid.  Although I used to be the champion of early morning workouts, I'm hard pressed to do much before 7am and that's only when forced to by the small boss.  So in an effort to ensure the workout happened and I reached out to Jeff who's training for a marathon so therefore always needing to run.  Misery loves company, or so I thought.  This was our first running date, so I was a bit worried about oversleeping and getting there on time, but 6:30 comes and I'm on his sidewalk. Off we go, we had discussed pace, 8:30's was the goal.  It took about a quarter of a mile before I started to really doubt my decision.  I was dying, and the dude was chatting like it was nothing.  WTF!  At first I tried to mask my gasping for air and then just started to focus on survival.  I knew I was in trouble when I started to miss the jogging stroller, at least then I'd have something to collapse on when the end came.  I casually drop the whole "If I'm holding you back just take off line" in an effort to save my life.  It's a no go, I peek over and it's like he's out for a leisurely jog while I'm panting, red in the face, contorted muscles.  OK, I have to hang, this was my idea.  We turn up the final hill and I really start to wonder if this is the last hill I'll ever run up.  I focus on the yellow soles of his running shoes and keep telling myself to just stick with him.  Then the clouds part and I start to hear's Kali's truck...thank god, we'll have to stop.      They have this new love thing going on so I figure this is the long good bye until after work, I'll have a moment to assess my vital signs.  No friggin luck, he barely slows, she tosses him a card out the moving car window and blazes by us.  My world starts to crash around me.  The final insult is we have to run by his street to make it more than 5.  The only reason I agreed was I knew we'd run by a nursing home and maybe a nurse or doctor would be present for life saving measures if it came to that.  During the final push all I can see is those damned yellow soles.  Tempo run done, 8:28 pace for 5.25 miles.  No life saving measures needed.  Thanks for the run, Jeff!

Miles run today:  5

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Stroller Division

The kid and I rocked our first race together this morning, we killed it if you really want me to gloat.  There were 5 strollers that I noted out there and we came in 2nd in the stroller division.  I think it's time for races to add this division and I really don't want to hear any of the b.s. about liability coverage and that the USATF bans us.  I'm running with a handicap with the stroller so it's unfair to grade my performance against all of those solo runners.  Then there is the whole starting at the back of the back and having to weave around idiots listening to music not paying any attention....FOCUS you fools you don't have the race course to yourselves!  If you want to get real technical, the weight of the kid could also factor in.  I was coming around once of the final bend and a spectator pointed out that I was the 2nd stroller but that my kid looked heavier so I was working harder.  Take that man who won the stroller division!  Although if we did that the lady with the double jogger and 2 toddlers would have kicked my ass (PS - you are my new hero).  The stroller division wouldn't need any prizes, although a cookie for our passengers would be appreciated.  So three cheers to my people running with strollers, keep it up and continue make the solo runners sigh with frustration when we blow by them!  And I have to shout out to races like the JCC 5k who are stroller friendly!

Ran 10 miles today.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

No more self doubt

I listened to your suggestions and rather than try to run my workouts slower, I'm aiming for a faster goal time of 1:55.  **G.U.L.P.**  So today was a 5 mile tempo at an 8:35 pace.  This whole idea of sticking with structured running workouts doesn't go naturally for me, I really have never been a fan of much more than just going for a run.   That said, the triathlons have sparked a competitive fire in me so I'm sticking with it in hopes of continued improvement in my overall finish times.  Like always I went out way too fast.  My legs were sore and I was dodging cracked side walks, parked cars, delivery men and construction so wasn't focused and ended up with an 8:14.  SLOW DOWN!  2nd mile was no better an 8:12 and this is when I turned on myself. I knew that I couldn't keep that pace up and also started to feel the effects of going out too fast.  Now I'm wishing that the kid could switch places and push me for a while so I can catch my breath.  At the end of the 3rd mile my Garmin informs me that it was an 8:52.  I'm pissed.  I seriously think about walking and forgetting about the whole thing.  What's the point?  Then I get slowed down when the kid  ejects the cheerio container followed by more construction related weaving.  4th mile was 8:54 and I'm disgusted, can't believe I've wasted my own time.  Ready to walk but the kid wants out of the stroller so I'm solely focused on making it to the playground before a level 5 melt down.  Last mile ends up being an 8:45 and just when I'm about to launch the jogging stroller over the fence in a fit of frustration (the kid was already out and running towards the slide),I see that my average ended up being an 8:35.  Right on the money.  Hmmmm...what could I have done if I remained more focused during miles 3 and 4 rather than just giving up? It did make me feel better when I ran into Fully at the end of her monster 17 miler and she had the same problem with the mind games.  The self doubt is almost as frustrating as dealing with shin splints or some other ache or pain that you perseverate on.  I need to get over it and just keep nailing these workouts.  

Ran 5 miles today.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Family Fun Swim

Well, not really but I needed to get back into the water and Joe had dedicated the entire weekend to mandatory family fun time.  What to do when you need to train for a tri and you also have a family that needs some attention?  You convince your husband that your local pond is seriously the best beach ever.  In fact you are appalled that he's lived in RI his entire life and never been there.   Arrive at said beach at 9am with husband, kid, and a bag full of beach toys, goggles, swim caps and a wet suit.  Then point out the half mile swim dock, convince husband that he should try it and he'll do great (it helps that he has his own tri coming up at the end of the month).  Silently snicker on beach while building sand castles watching the evidence of the husband's poor sighting.  I mean really, straight line out and back and he does a figure 8 out there, it was hysterical.  Act very supportive when he finally arrives back at the beach, trade off kid and school the husband in open water swimming. Return from swim and pretend to not be winded even though you just went hard and fast to prove you could go harder and faster than he can.  Rehydrate and stretch while the kid feeds you cheerios and build more sand castles.  I will refrain from the full on gloat but will just point out that he was a life guard and swim team star and I just learned to swim a mere 4 years ago and finish times were more than 10 minutes apart....somehow I doubt that he'll ever agree to a family fun swim ever again.

Swam a half mile and biked for an hour

Sunday, September 2, 2012


Hiring a pacer.  Exciting job opportunity for someone who can deal with a moody boss.  Requirements include reading the training schedule and ensuring that the boss stays on pace.  Flexibility is a must, days and time vary.  Pacer may also be asked to push the jogging stroller and will need to do so while keeping pace.  Pacer may also be asked to carry water or Gu, think pack mule.  Pacer also required to come to runs with exciting conversation topics, should be able to carry on an entertaining 1 sided conversation.  No benefits and pay will be in baked goods and is performance based.  Pacer will be credited if goal time of 2 hour half marathon is achieved and will face an ungodly wrath if goal is not achieved (please see second sentence regarding a moody boss).

Ran 8 miles at a 9 minute pace...should have been a 9:20 or slower