Sunday, March 27, 2011

Weekly Summary

I took a light week... Monday and Tuesday were just yoga and rest. Wednesday was 4 miles, in anticipation of a long run on Friday (which I mentioned in the previous post). Today was 9.8 miles with my Sunday morning running group. So altogether only 3 runs, for 34.8 miles. That is better than last week, and felt better too. I'm going to try to do some more yoga this week, and taper a bit for the race coming up on the 9th. *Hopefully* I can feel 100% by race day!! It will help that I have some time off of work this week and can rest up. :)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Finally, a decent run :)

After taking a few rest/yoga days this week and quitting my stressful job, I wanted to attempt a long run today. Diez Vista 50k is in two weeks and I hadn't had a decent long run yet this month. I had no idea how I would feel today and wasn't excited about the weather, so I decided to keep it easy... I stuck to pavement, gravel, and easy dirt trails, nothing technical or difficult, and with no specific distance in mind.

Around mile 4 I started feeling like the backs of my legs were wetter than the front (it was misting a bit of rain, but nothing major). After a few minutes it was pretty obvious that my backside was getting soaked, so I stopped and checked my pack: sure enough, my hydration bladder had sprung a leak and was dumping water all down the back of me. Lovely. I was able to ration the water long enough to finish the run, but now I have to pick up a new bladder before my race!

Anyway, I felt better today than I have in weeks, and I ended up finishing out around 21 miles. I say "around" because my garmin was being pernicious today and kept shorting me on distance (in one particular 5km stretch it lost a whole km!) so I have to estimate my distance based on my knowledge of the route. I'm counting 21.

So glad to be feeling better. :) And now my work schedule is changing so my stress/busy-ness levels will be greatly reduced, which should also help. :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Weekly Summary: ugh

It was a terrible week. I don't know what's wrong with me... nothing has changed for my running, but all my runs feel awful lately, and I didn't get nearly the mileage I'd planned last week. I've been getting pains from my ankles up through my shins to the knees, and my legs just feel dead. But my shoes haven't changed, and my mileage is neither unusually high nor unusually low... so I don't know what's going on. Hopefully it resolves itself. Yesterday I was getting the "rest or get injured" message so I will take another light week and then see how I feel.

In the meantime, I've registered for the Diez Vista 50k on April 9, so I really hope I am feeling refreshed by then! I haven't had a run longer than 15 miles in about a month... so I will be running for fun and to complete (technically it's just a supported training run for White River anyway!).

Anyway, last week:
Tuesday - 5 miles night trail run
Thursday - 5 miles paved, with the puppy
Saturday - 8 miles. This was supposed to be a long trail run but I bombed it :(
Sunday - 9.3 miles. I was going to try to make up some of the bombed long run... didn't happen

Total: 27.3 measly miles. what is wrong with me?!

In other news, tonight I'm going to a Yoga for Runners class. I don't know if it will be an ongoing thing or not, but maybe it will help my legs feel better?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Time for Running!

As of April 1, I am trading my two-job-working-six-or-seven-days-per-week arrangement for a 3 day work week. Sweet. Basically, I'm quitting one job and going full time at the other. But it's a condensed work week, giving me four days each week completely off! I'm pretty excited about this... I will have to rearrange my running schedule but overall I should be able to get in more miles, and better quality runs, while still making time for the other important things in life. And one of the great bonuses is that my dog will come to work with me (he already does sometimes, but now he can come every day!).

The only hitch is that my work week ends on Saturday morning... and most ultras are on Saturdays! But I will work that out as I go, either by taking vacation days or leaving work early those mornings. I don't run a lot of races anyway, so it shouldn't be too much of an issue.

It will be interesting to see how my training changes now that I will have more time, and also won't be working awake overnights anymore. Last summer when I was training for White River I really felt the effect of the overnights, especially when I would do a really long run and then not get to go to bed until the next day (I guess that would be good 100 training! lol). More sleep should help in recovery.

With that said, I haven't had a long run in a few weeks, so tomorrow I'm planning to get in a good 20-22 miles. Followed by my second-last awake overnight.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weekly Summary :)

Good week. My legs felt better than they had the previous couple of weeks. Also, all week I was following Scott McMurtrey doing the Atacama Desert Crossing in Chile. It was very inspiring and kept me running positive. :)

Tuesday - 5 miles night trail run, followed by sushi. This was our last true night trail run of the season, since the time change is taking away our darkness! We will still continue the runs though.
Wednesday - 5 miles with the puppy, paved, followed by my 29th blood donation :)
Friday - 5 miles, paved
Saturday - 15 miles: 8 by myself, 7 with a group, and cake afterwards (mmmmm cake!). This was my best feeling run in weeks, which was a surprise given that it was only 3 days after donating blood.
Sunday - 10.2 miles, half by myself and half with my Sunday morning running peeps. :)

Total: 40.2 miles. My goal was 40 so that is good!

Goal for the coming week is 45, with a 22 mile long run.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Weekly Summary

This was the second week in a row where my legs felt sluggish and tired. I don't know why... my mileage hasn't been high enough lately to be having that effect. Hopefully this week will get better.

Tuesday - 5 miles in the slushy, sloppy snow.
Thursday - 5 miles paved, with the puppy
Friday - 5 miles paved
Sunday - 15 miles paved

Total: 30 miles, and too much pavement!

Today I tried on the new New Balance Minimus trail shoe. I'm *almost* sold on it, but not quite... in a few weeks I'll go try it on again and see how I feel about it. I did run in them on the in-store treadmill and I loved how it felt, but a couple of spots on the shoe seemed off or too snug, even after going up half a size. We'll see. Definitely check them out though if you are looking for an awesome minimalist trail shoe!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A Little Less Sparkle

My first memory of my Grandpa Henry was a story: they said when he was young, he was so strong that he could lift an entire car.

As an adult he raised horses, which were sometimes used for old westerns being filmed in his home state of Montana. Ronald Reagan himself rode my Grandpa's own horse in one of his movies.

When a youngster in his family needed a home, Grandpa Henry gave him one, raising him as his own.

When Grandpa got older, he sometimes had a hard time attaching all of our names to the right person at the right time. Once he was trying to get my name out and it came out "Howard" instead. My family has called me Howard as a nickname since. He always said I should "find a Mennonite to marry," because he thought Mennonite boys were honest, hard-working, and good.

When he told a joke, he would do it so subtly that we almost missed it. Upon realizing that he'd said something funny, we'd look over to see his head down, shoulders shaking in silent laughter.

When he said he would not live to see another Christmas, we all rushed to Montana to visit, in case it was our last chance. He was probably just messing with us: he lived to see two more Christmases.

But as it turns out, that was in fact the last time I saw him. Grandpa Henry passed away early this morning while we slept. In my mom's words, "The world is losing a little bit of sparkle today."

Rest in peace, Grandpa. We love and miss you.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Building Character?

As I've mentioned, I have a regular Tuesday night trail running group. It has been really fun, but is usually my toughest run of the week because I am always the slowest person and am constantly trying to keep up! This is good for me (I think).

Tonight there were just three of us; the rest were probably smarter to stay away, as conditions were terrible. We've had quite a bit of snow over the past few days, combined with warming/freezing temperatures and some rain. It's a slushy, slippery, mucky mess out on the trails right now. As a result, we decided to do an "easy" route tonight. That is, it's an easy route under normal conditions. Tonight it was pretty tough!

The boys were gracious enough to wait for me while I slipped and slid through the snow at a snail's pace. When I was feeling slow and tired, I just reminded myself that even though I'm the slowest person in the group, I'm still among the "hardcore", because I was out running through mucky snow in the middle of the night--on purpose!! lol (hardcore... or stupid? You decide!)

I wanted to take a photo for posterity's sake... That little circle of light is from my cheapo headlamp! :)