Saturday, May 24, 2008

Friday's Run...

My runner's club at the YMCA stopped meeting on Fridays because of the season. There wasn't really too many of us as it was, usually myself, Mike and Jim. Sometimes Maria would come along or I'd con some unsuspecting person who happened to look remotely interested in running to go for a shorty. Come to think of it, not one of those people I somehow talked into running has ever run twice. LOL!!

I'm happy to announce my coach, Jim, is putting a training program together for a half marathon to be run in October. We'll start the training in July. Long runs will be on Saturdays, not sure about the short runs yet. Details are still in the works. We'll run a few 5K races along the way. I'm going to do this program with my two daughters! Kerri is 22 and Kirstin is 19. I am thrilled they want to run. I think Kerri will be more serious about it, Kirstin is more of a free spirit and might not get too into it, we'll see. Kerri had a liver transplant 21 years ago so I'll worry about her hydrating on long runs in this Florida heat. Ok, I'll worry about her short runs too! Part of being a mom! Her meds can wreck havoc on her kidneys if her electrolytes get out of kilter. I'll be running behind her every step with a water bottle and gatorade....haha!

So....I have been solo on all my running these days. No runner's club, Mike went to Maine and Jim is extremely busy. I like running with people most of the time. Knowing I'd be running with someone on Fridays made it ok to run alone other days. I had something to look forward to. But alas!! I have found a very surprising side effect of running alone. With no one to talk to, I seem to have picked up some speed...

I did my core exercise class Friday morning, perfect warm up before a run. I was tired and lazy, almost just went home. I decided to do a slow 4 miles, I wanted to just get out there and enjoy the air. I ran about 3.8 miles and here's the exciting news...I ran it in 25:32. Almost 4 miles! I started off slow and steady, not really thinking about my speed. I actually remembered to hit my stopwatch (I'm trying to be better about that) When I looked at it at the 1 mile mark I couldn't believe it! 6:48! This first mile was short, about .1-ish though. Keep this in mind. I pushed my crazy thoughts out of my head, walked about a minute and took off again. Made it to mile marker 2 at 12:04. Yeah, I was thrilled! That was a true mile and it was faster. I am still so surprised. I took off again making it to mile 3 at 17:42. It felt like a dream. Still does. I had one mile to go and I was getting pretty tired by this point. I started to have my freaky obssessive thoughts, doing math in my head but I wanted to remember my times, so I refused to think about numbers and started running again. I got back to my starting point at 25:32. Remember though, this last mile was short by .1-ish also.

I kept running the times in my head as I did the cool down walk to my car. I wrote down my times so I'd remember them and then I started with my math craziness in my head. I still can't believe it. I went back in the gym to leave the paper on Jim's desk but I ran into him on the way. I showed him my watch (which I still haven't reset....LOL) He thought I just did 2 miles. It was so cool to tell him I did almost 4. He knows the route so I'm waiting to find out the exact mileage I ran. I would have been happy running 3 miles in 25:32!

When I think back to that run and pull it apart like I always do....I had a great warmup in the class and I remember I wasn't singing along to my iPod this time. I ALWAYS sing. It's the only time I'm by myself and won't hurt anyone's I was alone too, so no one to talk with or slow to look at stuff with. I had coffee and a banana before I got to the gym, then a water with a GU gel pack right before I ran. I didn't get any calf cramping this time either. I do have a lot on my mind these days, sleep has been elusive too. As I started running I just wanted to clear my mind and try to relax. I usually try to sort my mind while I run but I decided to just let everything go this time. No thinking.

I have this soothing relationship with music that lets me get completely inside it. There are some songs that I can actually feel envelope me sometimes. Usually I need to be laying down either by the pool, in the jaccuzzi or in bed. It's kind of like meditation I guess, only I can do it with any music. I had never thought to try it during activities. I'm thinking that when I shut my mind down and went into relaxation mode it let me just GO. I worry the excitement of running a race may not allow me to relax that way I tend to get very excited in races. I also talk to people along the way. I only see some of these people at races, so it's the only time I CAN talk to them. I hope I haven't been bothering them! Yikes!!!

I guess I'll just have to wait and see if I can do it again.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Space Coast Marathon

I have registered for the Space Coast Marathon for November 30, 2008. I am very, very excited! It feels good to be committed once again to another goal. I will admit though, it's kinda the same feeling I got when I found out I was pregnant with my 2nd daughter. Which was a mixture of excitement, happiness and that feeling of "OH MY GOD! WHAT WAS I THINKING???" Hahaha!!

I went into the Sarasota Marathon not fully understanding what I was about to do.

I'm going into the Space Coast Marathon knowing full well what I just signed up for...a lot of hard work. A lot of training. One more thing to be proud of. And I'll be doing a couple things differently. Namely my diet. Nutrition is going to be a prime focus this time around. I have never been very good about eating in general. I sometimes forget to eat and at other times I eat until I have to go lay down. Just yesterday morning (oooh, a James Taylor song!) I was headed out the door for a gym class and my husband was still home. He asked me why I was working out without eating first. It didn't even occur to me that I hadn't! But I was already running a little late so I just left anyway. I was planning on running at the gym after class, but my husband's question stuck in my mind, so I went home to eat first. He's right, I need to make nutrition a priority. HEARD!!

Another thing I'll be doing is speed training mixed in with my long runs. Last time I was just going for endurance. I had never run before so I had a lot to learn in a very short time. I see that now. I also see I still have a lot to learn. I didn't even know what a tempo run was until last week.

I haven't really been doing much upper body workouts either. I plan to get in much better shape for this next marathon. I want some Sherry abs!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hey, maybe I'll be able to wear an outfit like Deana Kastor!!!! (yeah

I have something to look forward to again. I love the excitement of the marathon. I love being a part of something that brings all kinds of people together. Men, women, young, old....every shape, size and color from all over the globe. It was so cool the morning of the Sarasota marathon to look out my motel window and see so many people walking over to the starting area. It reminded me of when I was too little to go to school yet and I'd watch all the kids walking by my house on their way to school. I wanted to go. I wanted to know where they were going and be a part of it too. That morning of the marathon, watching from the window, hearing my husband ask me if I was ready to go....I felt so happy that I could. I wanted to open the door and yell "WAIT FOR ME!" Instead, I walked hand in hand with Bobby, so thrilled to be there, so grateful to have a loving, supportive husband to see me off on that morning. I almost felt like that little girl again, so excited that I got to go.

And now I get to go again. Anybody want to come too?

Monday, May 19, 2008

4 miler....

I just ran a 4 mile run. It's about 86 degrees out, pretty humid but that never really bothers me. I started out fast figuring I'd just try to kill I went 2 miles straight out with a 30 second walk at the 1 mile mark. I actually remembered to wear AND hit my stopwatch! I didn't look at my timer until I got to the 2 mile mark because I wanted to run without any pressure to hold a pace like that. Sometimes I can get obsessive with the timing thing. Not so much the actual time, but playing with the numbers. I add, subtract, multiply and divide the numbers so many times I wind up frustrated. That's the reason I hardly ever bring a watch on my runs. I decided I need to get past all that if I'm going to speed train though.

I hit the stopwatch at mile 2......17:52. Oooohhh....I like that number. So guess what I did? Yeah, I spent the next 2 miles trying to figure out the MM, then I multiplied THAT to figure a 5K estimate. Then I tried to figure how much slower I probably would get in a 5K, so I tacked a couple minutes onto THAT, just in case. THEN, as if I wasn't getting a headache from thinking so much, I tried to guess how long it was going to take me to finish my 4 miles. So you see why I don't like to time myself.

Anyway, I finished 4 miles at 38:42. Sub 9 mm. I like that. I think I'm ready to cash in my speed training tickets with my coach. I think I mentioned I won a bet with Jim a couple weeks ago. It was over a song. I was right and won 2 speed training sessions....yay!!! I'm R-E-A-D-Y!!!!!!


Last week was a crazy week, I didn't do any running after Tuesday's tempo. My list of stuff to do had me a little overwhelmed, but I'm baaaaack!!!

I went to my core class at the gym this morning. Sara instructed us, she's a sweetie. Sara works at the gym when she's off college so she's here for the summer. I was so looking forward to running with her but she has a stress fracture! She just got the boot off the other day, not sure when she'll be ready to run.

Mike is back from Italy. We run together (when we're not injured) The day he left my flexor healed, I swear! Then the day we were going to have a nice long run, he dumped his motorcycle and hurt his foot and leg. He had a couple runs since then but now his ankle hurts. He sees the doc this week too, but then he leaves Friday for Maine for 4 months. We'll be training for the Space Coast marathon in Nov. We'll have to keep tabs on each other!

My friend Ed is waiting to hear on the NY marathon lottery. If he doesn't get in, he's doing Space Coast too. My selfishness is in high gear. I want him to run Space Coast with me! Ed told me he'd help me pace it to finish in about 4 hours. Mike will be training for that time goal too so how COOL would that be????

It's a cloudy day here today. Perfect for a little run through the neighborhood. I have a bag of Doritos and 4 beers to run off from yesterday...