Sunday, August 3, 2008

NP Endurance Project Week 4

Four weeks into this project and everyone is doing so well!! It was extremely evident that all of us have a huge competitive streak in us during week 3 at the track. We all shot off that starting line during the mile test like the cops were chasing us. I thought I heard "Chariots Of Fire" playing in the background!

I had an injury malfunction that day, which is why my time is not posted. I went back to the track last week with a small group of us who hadn't been timed yet but I threw a nutty on Coach because he made me go slow. (HA!...notice how coaches get the glory AND the blame????) Anyway, I conned another shot at the timing funny if I came in even slower....LOL...I'll post my updated time when it happens.

This week we had a scheduled 10K with the team. There were about 4 people missing. We were running the Firecracker 5K route twice. Unfortunately, I've been sick all week and can't breath while sitting, never mind trying to run it. So I was the water girl. Very important job actually. Everyone was so happy to see me!! LOL

It was a little muggy (and I wasn't even running) We stretched and Jim gave a briefing on the route. He explained that this was not a timed race, we were doing a long run. People should be able to talk while running this pace. I honestly thought I'd see Bob F come flying down the road in about 22 minutes, so I was happy to see him keeping his endurance pace. Bob, Ed and Michelle came through first and I handed them water as they passed by. Then came Linda and Tess. I walked with them while they had some water, then yelled out something "coachingly supportive". (I'm sure it helped immensely) Next came Sherry, Cindy, Jana, and Coach. I walked back to the YMCA and waited for them to finish the last half of the route. Everyone was happy with their run. They ran 6.2 miles! That was the longest run ever for a few of these runners. I could see the pride in their faces when they came in. I remember the first time I ran 5 miles. What a feeling! It's so weird when you first start running. Even one mile seems so far away. When you turn and look back at where you just came from and can't see the whole route, it's one of those "WOW" moments. Very, very satisfying.

This run was all about finding that comfy, enjoyable pace. These runs are so very important for marathon training because if you've never run a half before you don't really realize what it takes to get to the finish line. You think it's speed. You don't want to be last. You worry about running over the finish line behind the street sweeper. You worry no one will be there to cheer for you when you do make it. But it's so not about any of that. Not the first 13.1 race you run anyway. This first race is about it being a gift you're giving yourself. It's about finding out you have it inside you to endure this race, meeting fellow runners from all over the USA, seeing the beauty in something as simple as a person on the sidelines with a bowl of strawberries. Sounds kinda corny, but it's all true. When I hear people talking about their race experiences, I hear them give their finish time, but then the stories come. No two are alike. Everyone of them are so special, and every time I get lucky enough to catch someone telling their story, I feel the pride in their voices. I see it in their faces. This Endurance Project is even more special because we're all going into it as a team. We have each other to train with, ask questions and ease each others' nerves. We will have different finishing times, but we'll really have finished it together.


Hope you all are well and feeling great,

The consensus for Saturday morning is that we will meet at the Edison College. Registration is 6 – 7 am race starts at 7:30.
We like to get there about an hour before race time, allows enough time to complete registration and warm up, etc. The plan for us who are at that race will be to warm up (mile or so easy….) then do the race 3.1 miles, then re-run/walk the race course again for total mileage that day approx 7.5. NOTE. That’s the goal distance for all who don’t make it to the race in Punta Gorda. Do an equivalent distance this coming weekend.

Friday is the “rest day” so we can be full of vim and vigor Saturday morning. Remember this week’s “assignment” is at least two days ab/core strength training (your choice, crunches, planks, stability ball, roman chair or mat-work.)

Add to the core training two days ( a 3-miler, a 4-miler) of cardio/easy running before Friday. IF your legs/feet/knees/hips/hamstrings, etc. feel on the brink of injury--- Avoid pounding them…Advisable to do non-impact cross training for the time duration of 30 minutes one day and 45 another day.

Keep our eyes on the prize ie: being strong and injury free on October 11 to complete the 13.1 miles.

Bob and Michelle have a great trip to PA!