Slow and Steady

Saturday, February 19, 2011

People can be divided into three groups: 
those who make things happen, 
those who watch things happen, 
and those who wonder what happened. 
Showing up is 80% of life. 
Hello and welcome to my first non-pity party post in a while. Today I woke up even more stuffy than the previous two days. I felt this sickness coming on, but today I got confirmation. The tense muscles I thought were from Krav Maga, yeah, now I am thinking they are the aches and pains that go with the flu. I was feeling pretty junky this morning, but throwing up in the drive way kinda sealed the deal on the flu question. Did I go back into the house and snuggle in bed? Nope. I felt pretty committed to go to my 8 mile trail run this morning.  I was actually pretty proud of myself for going as I am kinda chicken to do races alone. Other things no problem, not so much. I felt totally yucky when I got there and it was freak'n cold. My feet were completely frozen for two miles, the numb kind of frozen. The good news is I felt like I was moving at a lovely 10:30 comfortable clip and when my watch beeped I was running sub-10. How cool is that? I suddenly felt better. Feeling better, didn't last long. I thought my mile 3 Chocolate Power Gel just wasn't going down with the ice cold water well, but at mile 4 the nausea I was feeling when I woke up had come back. This is not going to be a woe is me post. Actually I would like to tell you what I have learned over the last couple of weeks with my training and my long runs.



While it would have been great to "race" this, it was actually a training run. I am planning a flat half marathon on March 13th and I am terrible at getting my long runs in alone. My strategy? Sign up for races to substitute as long runs. I was truly a lucky girl to find a progressive trail series. A couple weeks ago the distance was 6, this week is was 8 and a couple weeks from now it will go up to 10, then culminate 3 weeks after that with a trail half marathon. If you are wondering, I will also be doing the trail half on March 26th also. I truly feel like the 10k to half marathon distances are my strong suit. They are long enough that I feel accomplished and short enough to be able to train for in a reasonable amount of time. Speaking of training....

In the 8 mile distance I moved at a faster clip my first 5 miles as compared to the 6 mile distance, but then I really lost it on the hills. Does my big slow down mean I went out too fast? I am still trying to understand proper training and pacing. I thought that in the 6 mile race I took the hills on a bit too hard and that it then made me slow down to a walk and that I walked way to long for recovery. Today I decided to run what I could, but to walk more often, but for less time each time. That worked well for mile 4, but by mile 5 I was allowing the mole hills to feel like mountains and walking very manageable hills. Yes I was feeling sick, but at the same time I know this was a mental challenge for me. Also if you look at the comparisons above I lose steam after 3 miles. My guess is that I need a longer distance run mid-week. If I am running 2-4 miles at a time during the week, of course my body is going to feel done after 2-4 miles in a race. I have a longer distance run scheduled for mid-week and every other week it incorporates some speed work, but I just haven't been sticking to that run. The first thing I need to do is step it up and stick to the schedule.  The good thing is is that I can turn it up at the end and I like that doing it at the 6 mile race wasn't a fluke. I really can dig deep to finish strong, yay me! The major reason I was able to do it at the 6 mile race was a Tri Club member basically pulled me. Today it was a complete stranger. I chatted with said stranger and another friend of hers after the race. I remember the other girl from the 6 mile too and presto, I now will have two familiar faces at the 10 mile race. Runners are a pretty cool crowd.

The other thing that I need to work on is stretching. Early this week I felt some funkiness in the left knee and after the 8 miles I felt some tightness deep in my left tush. I do not want to injure myself. I.NEED.TO.STRETCH.REGULARLY. The third thing I need to do is focus more on my hydration. I was really dehydrated a week or so ago, then this sickness started coming on. I felt like I was drowning myself in water. Now I know I should be taking water more frequently in smaller quantities throughout the day vs. downing a water bottle at work and then another on the drive home. Taking care of myself is important and I need to make it more of a priority.

I need help. How do I learn to be stronger in the middle of the race with no one around to pull me? I will tell you I have considered music, but I just don't feel right listening to music on a trail run. The other thing is today it was supposed to rain, it was gorgeous, but had it rained wouldn't my iPhone/iPOD get soaked?
Why I Kick A$$: Because I show up rain or shine, flu or no flu.
Thankful Three
  1. For Muddy Trail Runs
  2. For Saltine Crackers
  3. For My Couch


Lisa {} said...

um, i have to say, i would have been so done after the puke on the driveway. i am a BIG BABY when it comes to that. so, wow, congratulations on pushing through that! the progressive trail runs sounds really awesome. wish there was something like that around here. now, go drink some hot tea or something!!

Amanda@runninghood said...

Take care of yourself girlie! for the middle of the run...that is a good question. I would really find a happy place in your mind...something to visualize...maybe you focus on your form and see yourself looking and feeling strong and finishing in the time you want. I'm a big mental person.

Teamarcia said...

Racing after puking is totally badass! Way to push through.

Christi said...

Wow, you are amazing! Racing with the flu is wicked strong! I hopeyou feel better soon.

Molly said...

you look so cute! And you're hardcore girlie!

I stretch every single day, it really does make a difference.