Monday, November 28, 2011

Let's talk turkey

So apparently working hard at the Fall Classic was enough to make my sickness worse.

My cold / crap in my throat decided to really take hold on Tuesday.  I had taken Monday off from working out as I felt generally tired.  Tuesday, I awoke early and just ran a nice moderate pace on the track with AM, while CV clicked off her repeats.  My calves felt a bit sore from Sunday's race and I just felt sick.  Mid-way through the afternoon I was just feeling crappy.  However, the husband was heading to jujutsu so I decided I would force myself to go to Masters Swim, but I did not feel like going at all.  Thankfully, even though I worked my tail off, I felt better after I was done than before I started.  Wednesday was another easy swim day and I felt worse than ever.  My throat now had a tight vice and I was coughing terribly without much of a voice.

The timing totally stunk, being the holidays and I had so many fun things on the calendar!!!  I passed on heading over to the social gathering at my sister's Wednesday evening and hit the hay early.  Thursday was the turkey trot in Aurora and I made my way over to my sister's place to meet up with them.

Despite feeling quite awful, I decided I would just run as hard as I could on this given day, knowing it would not be an ideal performance.  It was however a very nice day outside so I warmed up, barely made it through the bathroom line (dejavue!) and stripped down to my shorts, ctc tank and arm warmers at the start.

I again opted for no headphones and with the start, I was off.  I went out behind FD and felt pretty good that first downhill mile.  5:52.  I told myself that while it was fast, it was downhill so don't read into it!  I tried to find an effort to run steadily but not blow up.  I knew I was sitting in 3rd position for females. The fun thing about to course is there are two out and back sections where you can see the runners in front and behind you and I cheered for my sister, a bit shocked with how well she was running!

Around 2.5, 2 females passed me and I decided to keep my effort steady instead of upping my effort to go with them, knowing that the hill was approaching.  Last year I remembered pretty much blowing myself up there, so I ran conservatively up the hill.  I was feeling ok around the last one mile stretch and passed a couple guys but I pretty much just cruised into the finish.

Total time:  25:23, 6:21 pace
Last year my time was 26:21, 6:35 pace

So overall I was pleased that I managed to run nearly a minute faster, especially given how sick I felt.  Of course, I don't think that little trot made me feel any better but probably quite the opposite.  The BEST part of the day was that I was super proud of sis who ran a sub 28 and just under 7 min miles!  I had told her she should try to run sub 30 and boy did she show me!!  WOOOT!!

Sadly since I was not faster and did not place in the top 3 overall, I knocked her out of an AG placing as I took first in our AG and she had 4th.  I did score a $20 gift card to the Nike store (which I already spent!!).  Turkey day was then filled with eating and two family gatherings and me just feeling generally crappy.  Again I hit the hay early to wake up at 4AM for our traditional black friday shopping.

Poor me was just miserable but I did get lots of good deals.  Talking hurt my throat terribly, but I did my best to rally through the day.  I got home from everything just before 4PM and now my husband was sick too.  We scratched our evening plans (that I had been really looking forward to) and made some turkey noodle soup and curled up on the couches to watch some movies.

I had planned to wake up Saturday feeling good, but no such luck.  I figured I could feel sick at home or maybe a little better if I got out and did something.  So off to run some trails with SERC I went.  It was a gorgeous day with a good group.  I did not talk much as every word hurt my throat but I was happy to be out running trails with a bunch of fun people.  I would definitely say the uphills felt like much more of a struggle on this day with my funk.  We ended up with 11 muddy hilly miles.

I drove home and changed into some other clothes and was picked up to head out to West Branch to mountain bike.  Despite feeling generally crappy, I was enjoying the gorgeous November weather tremendously.  Our mountain bike ride was cut a little short for a few reasons but I could have rode all day.  We had another Thanksgiving feast Saturday night at my husband's family and I finally laid down in bed, so ready to get some rest.

However I tossed and turned and coughed most of the night.  I woke up to a rainy gray day but decided I should do something so I headed off to Solon to run.  I had no plan other than to roll with it and get some miles in.  I ended up running towards the front of the group and was happy to chat with NC and we ended up sticking together.  I was a little surprised that I was chatting away and clipping off miles at a decent pace.  My throat did not hurt sooo bad but I still was trying to breathe shallow as deep breaths brought on coughing fits.  All in all, I managed 12.75 miles at 7:12 pace and the run did not feel too hard.

Sunday was also a pretty lazy day and I crashed out early that night hoping to feel better today.  No such luck.  Despite plans to hit LFT early this morning, I opted to get some extra rest...maybe I will feel better tomorrow!!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Fall Classic Half Race Report

Official Time: 1:32:47
Official Pace:  7:05
Official Place:  3rd Overall Female behind 1&2 by about 1.5 minute

So again I missed that sub-1:30 goal.  I was not feeling very optimistic the week of the race.  I am still sick and I feel like I have struggled on workouts more.

Race day I woke up feeling generally crappy and after much debate popped a Mucinex D.  I was a bit worried it would affect my heart rate but I knew it would make me feel a bit better.

The husband came with me on this day so it was nice to have some company.  I arrived early but had nearly a mile walk to the race start.  I found a picnic table to wait for things to get started.  It was surprisingly warm (mid 50s) and slightly windy.  About 8:30 I started on my warm-up on the race course.   Just over half a mile in, I decide to double back as I really have to pee and knew there would be a line for the POP.  I got in line by 8:40 but by 8:55 I was not even close and finally got out of line to shed my pants, shirt and get to the starting line.  This was terrible planning on my part.  Had I realized on my warmup that I only needed to go a bit further out and I could have hit the bathroom at the Challet I would have done that...but I did not know!  Lesson noted for next time!!!  Guess if I was going to use one of the POP at this race, I needed a lot more time!!!

So now I am sort of freaked out knowing I was going to have to hold it for at least another hour and a half.  Even worse, I had forgot my inhaler in the car and could not hit that pre-race.  I hate not parking close!!!  Not quite feeling like an ideal start AT ALL as I lined up!  Guess my warm up should have been back to the car to grab it...oh well!

But as the race started, I settled down and tried to focus on the task at hand.  This week I went with no headphones knowing CV would run part of second half with me and there would be a lot of racers and I wanted to be cognizant of those around me.

I was trying to watch the garmin closely those first few miles to pace properly. I was actually feeling pretty relaxed.  I was really glad I had opted for no headphones as I was just trying to stay focused.  The miles were clicking by and I was doing my best to run tangents on the winding road which was pretty easy on the way out.  On the return trip I was counting down the minutes until I would see CV but with every passing minute, my bladder was getting more uncomfy!!!

I had passed one female and was closing on the lead female right ahead of me and her young friends let her know I was coming.  I had almost caught her but the day was catching up to me!!!  As soon as saw CV about mile 6, I said I was not feeling it.  I think I pretty much gave up on the pace at this point and started trying to go about mission-no-meltdown.  As I ran onto the path from the road I got caught up in a lot of traffic or walkers and slower runners from the 5K heading into the finish.  I wasted some energy here and by the time I hit the road, the extra exertion made me have to pee waaaay worse.

I told CV I was going to have to stop at the POP at mile 8ish.  I knew my pace was fading but I was just moving forward...MISERABLE!  As we hit the Challet I changed my mind and passed that bathroom.  I had a feeling if I stopped, I would say screw my time and jog the rest of the way in slowly knowing I was not going to make my goal with a stop.  Not sure if that was the case or maybe I would have felt better but I continued on.

I was now not looking at my garmin and I saw a female close in on me pretty fast.  She went on to take the lead and win it by a 10 second margin over the young female.  I plodded along and was having a hard time running tangents now with all the racers on both sides of the roads and it was obvious as my garmin was now beeping way before the mile markers.

I was soooo happy to make my way onto the path towards the finish and picked it up a bit at the end.  Then I was again side-stepping runners who must have been on lap one running three wide on the tight path.  As I hit the finish line they announced third overall female and they handed me my finishers medal.  I was struggling to catch my breath as now my asthma was flaring.  I am thinking maybe I walked out too fast, as afterwards it seemed a little strange I did not get some kind of award. 

So now I am walking and circling the POP because I am dying to go but I know if I stop walking and hit the POP, that my asthma will get worse.  Ahhhh, I was so torn and DYING!  Finally I was able to settle my breathing down enough to hit the POP.  SWEET SWEET RELIEF.  Picture Adam Sandler and longest pee.  I know TMI but OMG I needed that!

Coach said I should have just relieved myself when I was running.  Ha!!!!!  Well maybe someday but to this day I have still not ventured into that territory while I was racing...!

I walked my sweaty body over to see my husband and grab some water.  Then my coughing fit began with all the funk in the back of my throat.  Technically the 1:32:47 is a PR so I should be happy.  It was not what I was going for but given the circumstances, I will take it.  I am really glad I toughed it out and did not throw in the towel there at mile 8.  Overall, I did feel much better this race than last and know I am gaining running fitness!

The thing that jumped off the page at me was just how high my heart rate got.  Looks like the Mucinex infused run recorded my highest heart rate data ever!

The other major whiff on my part was some body glide!  I was SOOO chaffed between my legs, under my arms and even on my wrist from my garmin!  This led to a painful shower at CV's post race but I was still thankful to just get that was my husband!!!!  :-)

Garmin said 13.24 miles,  7:01 average pace

Split Avg Pace Avg HR Max HR
1 6:41 173 179
2 6:49 179 180
3 6:47 179 180
4 6:55 180 181
5 6:50 180 181
6 6:53 180 181
7 7:01 179 180
8 7:04 179 180
9 7:16 179 180
10 7:16 179 180
11 7:20 181 183
12 7:21 184 185
13 7:23 186 196

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Win Some, Lose Some

Sunday was the first of the two half marathons I had planned to run.

The long story short is I fell waaaaaaay short of my goal for the race.  There are several reasons which could have contributed which I hope to fix in 2 weeks.

So the morning started out pretty early even with the time change.  I was up early on dog detail and my lil cutie pie, Ember, decided that on that day she only wanted to play outside instead of taking care of business.  This led to me wasting a bunch of time outside and then she created a big mess for me inside to take care of before heading out the door!  Good thing I love that furball of a puppy!

Finally made it on to the road but was just feeling generally kind of crappy.  I could not swallow completely as the thick funk in my throat seemed even worse than it had the past week or two that I have had been sick.  Super fun trying to clear my throat the entire way out there!  It definitely gave me pause with my goal but I have been putting in some decent workouts I thought over the past couple sick weeks so I was hopefully I could muster up a decent run despite it all.

Upon arrival to the race, I was able to easily get my stuff and was ready to board the bus as the half marathon was point to point.

Race temperature was 38 at the start and the weather report looked like it would warm up to 42.  The wind was pretty strong mainly coming out of the south but slightly also out of the east which was not ideal seeings that we were running east the majority of the race and then south.  Thankfully the route was lined with trees most the way and it was not bad until heading south.

I dressed a little warmer than I normally would because I was not aware that we could drop clothes on a bus to return and I did not want to be super cold.  Upon getting off the bus I had about 15 minutes so I hit the portopotty (and all 4 of them were out of tp-not cool!) By the time I was running, I managed to get in one mile before I headed over to the start line.  However apparently we were not starting on time and it took some time before I even seen a race organizer.  Then a bus rolled in full of more racers.  Hope they did not need tp or a warm-up but they did get a couple minutes to hit the POP.  By the time we got going it was 8:17 and now I was cold.

I took off trying to settle into 6:52 pace.  We headed west for the first half mile which was nice with the wind at our backs before making 2 sharp left turns putting us onto the bike and hike path heading east.  Three guys went out fast in front of me.

Mile 1- 6:47, Not feeling too bad but this was not feeling very good either!
Mile 2-6:41- a little fast but managing fine.  I think I am passed by another guy.
Mile 3-6:51- crap, I already know this is not going to be my day.
Mile 4- 6:53- I am thinking seriously I cannot imagine running 9 more at this pace!
Mile 5-7:06-What if we just try to keep to ease up a little bit and see if I start to feel better?
Mile 6-7:14- Got passed by a couple more guys.  I am suffering!

Almost half way and all I can think is I am not even halfway and I am soooo miserable.  I am now frustrated that my pace is slipping into slower than some of my long runs' paces but it is taking most everything I had to keep running.  The main thing driving me is that I know I am winning the women's race.  I decide to run hard and quit looking at the paces.

Mile 7-7:17 - "Why do I do this for fun?"
Mile 8-7:06- Counting down the minutes
Mile 9-7:19 - Had to slow down and fix my Ipod as one podcast ended and I at least needed something better to listen to! 
Mile 10-7:09- ???  Why am I am mile 10?  For some reason I thought I only had two left. NOOOOO! I can't bear the idea of needing to run one more mile than I thought I was at!
Mile 11-7:22- I got nothing left
Mle 12-7:24- Finally just one more mile of torture.  Older guy passes me.
Mile 13-7:27- Into the wind and uphill grade.  THIS IS JUST MEAN!  Where is the finish line?
Total Time: 1:34:07, 7:11 pace, 1st overall female and 8th overall.

I got done and could not catch my breath...AT ALL.  I felt crappy and just kept coughing and coughing!  I was hugely disappointed that I did not run as well as I know I can but the sting was dampened that it was nice to get the Overall Female Win.

Average HR 175,  MAX 183- It was not that I was not working! Part of me wondered if it was just that I was not pushing as it was a little lonely on the course.  But judging from my HR, clearly I was pushing, it was just not meant to be this day.

I am hopeful that if I can get myself healthy and warm up properly, that I can do this next time.  Nice to know that I was getting a redo in two weeks and hoping I can do it.

PS- I have always thought I would be able to run NY marathon if I wanted as the half qualifying time was 1:33.  Now it has been dropped to 1:27.  Running a 1:27 half sounds awful difficult for me!

Thursday, November 03, 2011

The Halloween Fun!

Oh last week was tons of fun as expected!  I love this time of year in that I feel more relaxed with my training and take the time to cut loose with friends and get a little silly from time to time!

I have been totally slacking swimming and biking!!!  Coach just sent out our first set of off-season bike workouts so I am starting those this week!  Also as of 11/1, you could purchase your USMS 2012 membership so I did that this week too.  So time to get back into the swing of things after a pretty lax September and October for two reasons.

1.  I need to get myself back in biking shape as I help lead indoor trainer sessions starting in December and ideally I like to make sure I am well-prepared.

2. Improving my swimming is my numero uno winter goal!

So on the training front, I continue to just run, run, run lately!

Tuesday was the normal 10 mile day which included a track workout of 6x800's, some drills and then 4x100's.  Felt strong!

Wednesday was a 2.5 mi super easy fun run for CTC's Halloween Costume Fun Run!  Always a good time! 
I went as JEM!  Jem was my favorite cartoon on in the mid-80s when I was a little girl!

Thankfully as the designated driver Wednesday night, I was able to make it up for my Thursday morning tempo run which was 8 miles and 3mi@6:46.

Friday-?  Not sure what I got in that day.  Maybe it was an off day or maybe I ran easy??

Saturday was our girls Halloween / Pancake Run!!!  I had conned CV into meeting me out early for some miles before the group run.  We managed 7 mi at 7:03 before running 6 more easy on the trails for a total of 13.  I earned my breakfast that morning while having a super fab time with some of my favorite ladies!

Saturday evening was our Halloween Party.  Of course I had to go with my LMFAO themed outfit and showed my guests the "I'm Sexy and I know it!" ridiculous video a time or 6!  Heehee!  Another fun evening and late night which led to a very lazy Sunday!

So a super fun week in the books!  This week's workouts are a bit lighter as I taper for Sunday's half marathon race, the Inland Trail half!  Overall aerobically I feel pretty good and pretty confident.  My leg (tibial nerve area) habitually gives me pause so erroring on the easier side this week.  Bring on the gorgeous looking weekend forecast!