Saturday, August 16, 2014

Marathon Training Week 10

Some of the 11 min group.
That's me in the back with the white hat.
Fifteen miles today. It's the first time I've run that far since the marathon two years ago. I felt pretty good, but around mile 13  I actually got a little nauseous. I think it was partly my body saying "hey, 13 miles, that's when we stop right?" It was probably really because of a combination of too much water/Gatorade/Gu or just the fact that we were out there for so long and it was kinda warm.

A little before mile 13 my left leg starting acting up. It's not too bad, just tight. So I'm going to make an effort to stretch and roll it out. This last week, I've been good about doing my strength exercises. I downloaded a new app, Seven, which goes through twelve exercises, working the whole body. It's supposed to be the most effective way to get your heart rate up and do strength training without weights. One circuit takes just over seven minutes (hence the name). The app makes it fun by giving and taking hearts for workouts done and missed. I've only missed a couple because even if I don't want to do it, I know that I'll be done in seven minutes, so I do it anyway.

I'm starting to get into the right mental space to run the marathon again. Last night I was worried about covering the 15 miles since it's been almost two years running that far. So much of a marathon is mental and frankly, the thought is scary. It may be scarier when you've done it before because you know what it takes. I may very well finish and say "yep, that's it, never again." But I didn't think I was going to do a second one either.

Oh - I almost forgot. After our run, and our ridiculously long plank (that I took a few seconds break in the middle of), most of us went down to the lake and jumped (hobbled) in. It felt so good and I think counts as much as an ice bath does. I didn't even mind biking home in wet shorts.

No update on the fundraising front. I need to send my coworkers another plea - if I have to put up with them every day, the least they can do is kick in a few bucks towards Road Scholars. 

Stats for the week:
Miles run: 29
Miles left to go: 254.2
Raised so far: $734.20
Left to go: $265.80

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Marathon Training Week Nine - I am a runner

I know I'm kinda late with this update - mainly because what can I say that I haven't said before about training for a marathon. You get out there, you run, you wash running clothes, you do it all over again.

I did have an interesting experience on Tuesday of last week. I didn't go out for my early morning run with S. because I was tired. Sure, I could have dragged myself out of bed, but I just wasn't up to it. So I didn't do it. All day I felt like something was off. I felt like maybe I had left the garage door open, or the stove on or something. But I knew what it was - I hadn't run. And so I now realize that this is who I am. Not all that I am - but a big part of who I am. I'm not the fastest runner, or the most accomplished and I'm not the person who was "born to run". But now, I am a runner. And even when I'm not running, I will still probably consider myself a runner. Just like I consider myself a writer even when I'm not actively writing anything. Or a reader even if it's been weeks since I've picked up a book.

It feels weird to say that because I feel like a poser. Someone who is just trying to fit in. Maybe it comes from surrounding myself with people that are faster than me. Maybe it's because (in my mind) I don't "look" like a runner. Maybe it's because I rarely run more than 25 miles in a week, and if I'm not marathon training, probably hardly more than 15. But I think if missing a run gives you a nagging feeling like you forgot to do something, like something's missing, well, that gives you the right to call yourself a runner - regardless of what you look like, how fast you run or how many miles you log.

I know I'm the only person who's telling me that I'm not a "runner". It feels good to give myself permission to do so.

Stats for the week:
Miles run: 21
Miles left to go: 283.2
Raised so far: $734.20
Left to go: $265.80

Monday, August 4, 2014

Marathon Training Week Eight

Our mileage this week was 13, so basically a half marathon. We ended up doing about 13.5 because we're over achievers like that. When you run 13 miles at an 11 minute pace it takes you .... doing math .... two hours and 23 minutes. When you go that extra half mile, factor in water stops and what not, you're out there almost three hours. And when you run for that long with a bunch of other people you think of different ways to keep yourself entertained - or at least we do.

Our 11 minute pace group has decided we'd be the fun group on the path. We say "good morning runners" to just about every other group we go past. A lot of the groups also say good morning back, though we did notice a trend that the, ahem, faster runners (those clocking in around 7:30-8:30 min miles) tend to be a bit too serious to say hello back. Also, and I don't want to disparage the different training groups in any way, but those there were not of the CARA variety sometimes seemed to not offer us as many greetings. I'm sure it was a "don't talk to strangers" thing.

One of the runners in our group coaches rowers in lagoon in Lincoln Park and knows the people out rowing. So we thoroughly confused them as we ran past shouting their names. Other things we do while running include: thinking up inspirational t-shirts slogans; talking about chocolate chip pancakes and butt moles; and calling our pudding (actually footing to let someone know there might that a pothole or something is coming up, but it sound a lot like pudding). I never knew running could be so much fun. 

In other, more important news, the July knitted monster raffle has ended and on Friday night we picked a winner. 

Karen is a co-worker who in addition to being totally supportive, knows what I'm putting myself through as she ran her first marathon in 2012 and is super excited to have her own knitted monster. I'll post pics when I finish it. Thanks to everyone who donated during July. We made good progress on my goal - just a couple hundred left to go. If you're reading this and you haven't made a donation, click the button over on the right. I may even come up with another raffle prize - or do the monster one again since there were quite a few people who seemed to enjoy that one.

Stats for the week:
Miles run: 25
Miles left to go: 308.2
Raised so far: $734.20
Left to go: $265.80

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