Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Week 39: (Portland taper week 2)
Weeks running totals: 23
2009 running totals:1406.07
Weight/core training: 2
Week 38; (Portland taper week 3)
Weeks running totals: 24
2009 running total: 1383.07
Weight/core training: 3
Stretching class: 1
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
But I think I'm getting a sightly better attitude!
Running: my calves hurt. And my right heel. And my quads. But mostly my calves. In particular, my right calf. And my lower back. My infrequently-used-regular massage therapist did something to his back and therefore is history until November which left me in a jam as I really needed someone to dig in them calves and get the guck out! Like NOW! And I'm kinda weird about who touches my legs (or me, really). So I got the name of a few reputable therapists from various athletic personnel I trusted (two cyclists, one pretty major; one mega wonder-woman; one running partner) and I called most and went to the one that called me back first: wonder-woman (aka: Kathryn). Here's the verdict: that ankle I twisted in the relay is the culprit!!!! I knew it! I knew that twist was going to come back to haunt me!!! Before she even looked at my "bad" calf (the one bothering me most, the right one), she started in on the left and within the first touch asked me, "Have you twisted your ankle lately?" Um, how'd she know? Something about how the gastrocnemius muscle (that large calf muscle that looks oh so sweet when I wear heels :) ) was skewed and the way it was now improperly positioned was due to twisting of ankle leg #2 of relay. The reason my right calf was screaming is because I've apparently been overcompensating the right leg when I twisted my left ankle and using that muscle more. As interesting as the cause was (love that stuff), the purpose was the solution (I hope) - she dug in there, ripping away at "3 golf-ball size knots" - omg, that huuuuuurrrrrrtttttt and wow, it's hard to walk right now. But in a good way! She worked so long on that left calf muscle that I had to make 3 more appointments so that I can get my back worked on :). I am very happy with her abilities and know she's doing my body good before Portland. Oh, and the heel issue is my Achilles and calf related. Go figure! I'm now convinced my calves are the cause of everything that ails me. Always! I woudn't even rule out my calves causing my sinus problems!!
Health: I know I'm harboring "something" but not exactly sure what. It's sinus related, that I know, but I'm not stuffy like I normally am - yet the pressure around my sinuses are just throbbing like crazy and my head is killing me. Those two symptoms are part of my regular bi-monthly sinus infection regiment so that's what I'm banking this is - but I just feel very "off" and can't pinpoint exactly what is off. One thing though, I'm WAY tired. Classic sign of some sort of infection, I predict. Good news is: no fever today so hopefully my neighbor's swine germs did not attack me nor did whatever crud Matt was possessing during the relay. That's not to say that I can't catch something from the petri dish of germs I go to daily but the bottle of hand soap and Germ-X I carry at my hip are there for a purpose - let's hope they do their job!
I'm icing my owie left calf that Nazi-therapist dug into (her advice), stretching (bonus: I can stretch my one leg AND ice the other at the same time. Love it when I find a way to knock off two tasks at once - score!), hydrating, eating "ok" (more than oranges and strawberries, unfortunately), still consuming massive amounts of Vitamin C (no, you cannot OD on the stuff. The consensus is: you just pee out the excess...and maybe have some other end "issues." :) ), warm water soaking my right heel (Nazi's advice also) and trying to sleep more - which, btw, I did not get a nap today due to the massage and a much needed appointment with Becky, my friend and hair highlight magician. A cancelled middle school track meet left me with some time to get some writing done - yea! So I'm heading off to bed earlier than norm with nightly prayers saying a little night-time hocuspocus, along with some sweet dreams, and wake up 100% fully cured of everything that is currently hindering my Portland performance.
As SBS told me today when I told her my new Portland goal and attitude was not a sub-3:45 but rather to finish (and enjoy): smart move.
Yes, I think so, too. I will go to Portland, meeting and making new friends, come home and run another. I will not break, I will not even crack. I will run and I will do whatever I have in me that day and just accept that for what it is! This is part of how it all works....I am learning to be better about that! Besides, after forking out half my daughter's college tuition for a few more massage sessions, at least my legs should be ready to run. Nose is another story.
btw, Rob talked to me some on Monday about post-PDX and that makes me happy. er. Somewhat. Thanks, t-man :). And I highly enjoyed chatting with a new Portland marathoner friend today, thanks!!!
Today: 4x400 @ 6:28 pace
Yesterday: 3 Easyp.m., weight training a.m.
Um, no, this picture is not me. When I googled gastrocnemius muscle, this picture came up so Okay....yeah, I'd love to be able to do that (yeah, right...with my tight hamstrings??) and I love the beach so what better picture to send you.
Sunday, September 20, 2009
I am sitting at the Sports Clips, writing, waiting for the boys to get their hair cut. Sometimes I wonder if I have some sort of abnormality bringing my laptop with me most places where I have a few minutes to squeeze in some writing time. Time seems to slip away at exponentially rapid rates lately so I carve out a few minutes here and there when I can.
So I watched about 10 minute of a movie on my laptop last night, which I’m not certain is a good idea or not; I instantly thought of emails I needed to return and started emailing in the midst of plot. 20 minutes later, I’m totally lost and decided to just skip forward to any juicy parts and decided a plot is non-essential. Movie: Duplicity. A mighty fine case of a male bod in that movie .. and well, maybe a little more interesting right now for me. I dunno, but I had zero attention span to figure out what was going on. It’s about every 6-months that I ever watch a movie….and this is the reason why (I do like to GO to the movies, though, just not watch them at home. Especially if I go with Abbey :) )!
Time. I guess if we had more of it, we’d just find way to fill it and we’d be left with the same amount of time to ourselves that we have now. So I won’t wish for more, other than I wish the days went slower sometimes. I look at my children and am bewildered how the heck they got to be the ages they are. Oh, I’d also like an hour more a day just to take a nap - and not feel guilty about it.
Abbey was home on Friday night. I miss her. Anyway, reason for her return was actually not a good thing: her hard drive died on her computer. You know the computer that I paid a small fortune for back in April – you need one of those for college these days, you know. She had a gazillion pictures on it and I’m certain a lot of writing and school work. Not backed up. Live and learn, I guess, but my heart went out to her. Will see if I can pay someone to get as much info off of it once Dell comes and gives her a new hard drive. Hopefully tomorrow. We did some shopping on Friday night when I “eventually” got home from the high school Liberty Bell cross country meet (87 teams. Took forever. I paced autistic kid, Jack Ryan, which is a whole blog entry on its own! Pic above) and returned her back to school after Brendan was done boxing Saturday. I hated to leave her but she seems to be settling in well at school. She even took the train downtown later that night with some friends – that alone makes me very happy!
Okay, so there’s the real point to this blog, which is suppose to be about running: I’m not feeling well. I can’t pinpoint exactly what is wrong but I overall do not feel well. Tired, achy, headache, overall blah, stuffy nose. I’m a little freaked that I’m going to end up with N1H1 after spending an hour or more with my neighbor on her b-day Wednesday who, as of Friday, has a confirmed case of this nasty flu. My friend told me today that it has about 5 days to manifest so if I’m fever-free by Tuesday, I figure I’m good on that end. Matt, from the relay the weekend before, was really sick upon return of the relay and running a fever all week. He missed many days of work. I spend the greater part of 36-hours with him in close proximity to me, he drove my car the vast majority of that time. I’m downing 1000mg of Vitamin C about every 30 minutes – in hopes of warding off any and all germs. I got oranges and strawberries, full of Vitamin C, at the store today. My diet’s going to be composed of: Oranges, strawberries and chewable Vitamin C tablets!
I’m not running well. What should have been a decent 13 miler today turned out to be pretty sucky. I wasn’t feeling it from step one. Even before step one. I woke up at 3:30 this morning with a major headache and by 4:00 when I couldn't go back to sleep, I got up and took a Tylenol PM. Really what I should have done was get up and go run at 4am cuz when I finally crawled outta bed at 8:30 and hit the pavement by 9:30, it was too hot. I know better to run this late but I figured it was only 11, not 26 and besides, if Portland is hot (okay, extended weather forecast calls for mid-90’s in Portland this coming week. HUH? What’s up with that??!!?? I’ve gotta put a call into one SBS about getting that changed before I get there!) then I need to get some warm temp runs in. I got about 5 miles in at a good pace and then I just lost all sense of pace and doing close to 10:30's at the end...far from 8:30's like I was suppose to be.
GOD!!! Can't I ever have once decent "long" run!!???!!??? I mean, really this is getting very frustrating! Aside from the relay last weekend, I can't recall the last time I ran well. Maybe Georgetown half? Bix? Both of those good, but I have not had a decent long run since before I went to Boston! I swear to that!
I can’t run in the heat. I can’t run in the heat when my legs are still not recovered from the relay. I can’t run in the heat with heavy relay legs and not caught up on my sleep from the relay and I took a Tylenol PM at 4am – I felt like hell when I started out. My quads feel like lead pipes and my right calf muscle feels like it wants to explode right out of the skin! What is going on with that I have no idea. My ankle’s been bothering me since I ran with Jack on Friday night so I’m icing the crap outta that. Thankfully, it didn’t bother me at all running today – unlike other leg parts. My lower back has been in pain since I ran Pikes Peak.
So here’s my plan for the next 13 days: rest as much as I can. Stretch at least a half hour a day! Try to get a leg massage – at least twice…. Charlie, the guy that I LOVE to work on my legs, is out of commission until November. His replacement only works during the day, not after 3:00 (um, there is something not right about that – don’t most people work during the day??) so I’m going to have to be a brave little girl and seek another (need to call Kathryn, she said she had an excellent women). Take an ice-bath once daily. Start an antibiotic I have sitting here from my last sinus infection (don’t ask!). Drink plenty of water. Eat exceptionally well. Wash my hands every 10 seconds and use Germ-X the other 9 seconds. Consider over-nighting the military gas mask my friend from TX offered me. Go to stretching class once (maybe. Still on the mend about that) or maybe yoga. Do a little praying to the Running Gods that they give me one more chance. And hope that Rob will talk to me about post-Portland - cuz I've expressed many times that this is weighting heavy on my mind right now but we ever seem to address it.
And I’m going to continue my 1000mg of Vitamin C every half hour.
Can one OD on Vitamin C?
BTW, the boys haircuts are awesome!!!! They are soooo grown up (even sporting that little peach-fuzz mustache. *sigh*). Now if I can get them to just care a tiny bit about hygiene!! And I’m going to finish watching the juicy parts of my movie now and go to bed by 9:30 tonight. I promise!
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Whaddya think??? I love it. Thanks, Dave! Now, if I can get these shirts to Cara tomorrow somehow and get this ball rolling....
I'm running in the Liberty Bell CC meet tomorrow afternoon with one of the runner's who is autistic; I will be his guide. I'm a little nervous; his regular pacer (a fellow SHHS teacher) has to go out of town and asked if I could cover. Before even considering what Jack's pace was, I said yes...only to find out soon after, he runs about a 21:30 5K. Um, that's like my PR 5K since having had children....ugh. I hope I can keep up. In an attempt to see how difficult it would be, I hopped on my treadmill tonight and cranked out a few miles, one of them at 7-minutes since this is where I am gauging he'll run. The other two I slowed it down to hopeful race-pace of 8:30. Yeah, good thing today is not the marathon; I'd be landing myself a big ole F. Three miles at this pace was enough to kick my butt. I think I need a little more than luck tomorrow....who knows, maybe I'll land myself a fat PR at a local high school cross country meet. That just about makes me laugh.
B and R had track meet tonight. Ryan definitely needs a lot of form direction - he is all over the place with his arms and head flapping around. But he runs pretty fast and love the mile (after my own heart - my fav-y back in the day). Brendan is making progress with the 800 - yea. He's also doing the well in shot-put. A lousy picture but the boys on either side of the middle child in the pic.
3 miles run.
Did I stretch today? Um, no. But I will have tons of time when I get to the track meet to stretch (I think) before the race starts. That's the goal.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
BTW, my ankle is doing much better - thanks to those that asked about it.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Sunday, September 13, 2009
I could write a novel about the race and the experience I endured and how it changed my life, literally, but I will stop and just say that this race was, by far, one of the most memorable I have ever done strictly because of my teammates. We all pulled together and rooted for each other and were compassionate and understanding no matter what. I loved this most. We were all united with the same purpose and even though we didn't all know one another at the beginning, we were tied together at the end by persevering whatever obstacles we had and finishing strong. I made some new friends along the way and learned that I am truly blessed, to the point of overflowing, to be living a dream of being a runner!!!
Teammates: Bob, Denise, Nicole, Me, Matt, Andy - completion of my first leg at Loveland Ski Area.Bob running leg #9
And we're done: Abbey, Denise, Nicole, Matt, Me, Bob, Diann, Andy, Kern, Craig M.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
I have a list of 64 items to remember to pack for tomorrow's 9:30 start time. Thankfully, all items are compiled on a list. I hope I remember to check them off. I am to meet 20 teammates (two teams of 10) at 7:00a.m. tomorrow morning at the park-n-ride in Morrison, about 40 minutes from my house. Therefore, I need to be on the road no later than 6:15a.m. Probably better be earlier. I still have letters to glue on my second pickle sign. I need to attach vehicle signs to my car. I need to put the rocketbox on top of my car. I need to find my cooler. And I have back to school night tonight - which I would totally skip if I didn't have to sell Entertainment Books. I could slap myself about now for being so involved in my kids' schools.
Abbey's departure to DU on Monday left me mentally immobilized for about two days. Not in the sense of not being able to move but because I couldn't think. I couldn't think about preparing for the relay and I left vital information about it go unattended to and so it's no wonder I am about as panicked as one can be trying to figure out the van assignments (two vans, 10 people, two condos...and where we (or more importantly, I) need to be at various times). It's enough to make my head spin. I fully plan to take my leg and van assignment sheets to to back-to-school night tonight and as I sit selling practically zero books (please! No one wants to spend money right now), I will look over all my assignments and hope to have a better understanding.
I am very excited about this race; I have longed to do it for a couple years now. I just had no idea all the logistical details involved. I truly wish someone on our team had done this before so could help us out...but thankfully Craig M. and Matt are pretty smart guys, know the other guys on team 1 very well, and have this little van issue figured out. I hope they just tell me when I'm to get in the thing and pick someone up :).
On a more positive note: My legs are FINALLY feeling good and not screaming at me to halt every time I go for a run. My weight is down a little along with my body fat so maybe that, as with some lower miles this week, is agreeing wtih my running. Maybe it was the stretching class I went to on Monday. My glute pain is not painful; noticeable but not painful. My knees are happy. My hamstrings are being stretched daily. My quads are not yelling at me with every step. All legs parts coming together quite nicely right now to make my running not so draining. I am, though, having some pretty icky back problems; starting in Park City and escalating to sheer agony with last weeks' long run. I had this weird metallic taste in my mouth too and I feared kidneys!!! But I think it's okay...I am thinking the back is just sore from being back at work and the metallic thing was the antibiotic I had finished a week before. That's what I'm hoping. That back thing can literally top one in their tracks and double over. That and the stomach issues I have. Oh, and the calf cramps I've had. I've been reading a book on and off for the past year about running through the pain and accepting it as part of the hard work you've done. Almost welcoming it. I really don't welcome it all that much. Speaking of running with pain, lots of controversy over the book 'Born to Run.' I may have to read that soon. In my spare time.
Okay, written well past my scheduled 4 minutes to write so signing off, heading to back-to-school-night, going to the bank, getting some food at the grocery store, getting rocket box on my car, finding my cooler, and packing my 64 items (now 61 as I have 3 things put off to the side). Hoping for an earlier than midnight pillow....
Go Pickles GO!
(oh, and if not stressed enough right now: Team 1 predicts that our team, Somewhat Pickled, can win the mixed co-ed team division, if we run according to plan. Hum....pressure)
Run since I last blogged: a lot; cannot remember number right now.
Weight trained since last blogged: 2 (that I DO remember).
Sunday, September 6, 2009
Yesterday, I did my last continuous long run before Portland. Usually, I like to hit the last long run 3 weeks out but next weekend, when that 3 week mark would land, I will be up in the mountains running 3 legs of the Colorado Outward Bound Relay. I'll run 20 miles next weekend with the relay, but it will be over 3 legs ranging from 8.4 - 6.1 miles each. I really was nervous about this relay playing havoc with my long run but I asked a few people in the marathon world and all agreed that I can use the relay as a long run and I should NOT attempt a long run on like Monday or Tuesday after the relay because my legs will be dead. And I'm going to be exhausted.
So, yesterday was it!
I'm having mixed feelings about it. Two weeks ago when I ran the Park City Marathon as a training run I had some problems with my pace and how I felt at the end. Yesterday's 24 miles was not much different, but I did run it faster. I started at 5:20am and there is absolutely zero sunlight out then (duh) and to get my Garmin to light up, you have to hold that bezel down in two places but I lock the bezel because I tend to bump it and stop it accidentally, so I can't really use the bezel unless I unlock it and I've screwed up my watch totally a time too many times doing this...therefore, I really had no idea what pace I was going until I'd run under a street lamp, but I knew it was quicker than I needed to be or should be. Got to mile 7 where I refill my water-bottle at the car wash/Conoco but the gas station wasn't opened yet and I needed to stop, I started having some pretty bad stomach problems...err. I am wondering if GU isn't contributing to this!!??!!??. I ran on to the nearest Starbucks at Cherry Creek Whole Foods after I left the closed gas station and Starbucks, too, was closed until 7:00 (huh? Don't people who drink coffee want it before 7:00??), which was only 10 more minute so I ran around the area until it opened, refueled, and headed out, stomach feeling slightly better. After I hit the Denver Country Club, I headed North path to get in the mileage I needed. It's hilly. Not terribly so, but enough to mess with my pace. I really just want to find a nice, flat area for like two miles so I can gauge what is "effort" to me and how I feel. Portland is mostly flat. I started to have some pretty icky back problems, too, which I had in Park City. Glute was so-so, a major improvement over two weeks ago. Knees felt really good - yea...and my legs overall felt really good - yea again!!
But in the end, I just was spent,my back was killing me, and I just can't stop my mind wondering if a sub 3:45 is obtainable in Portland. Thought yesterday's run really felt okay overall, it didn't fell great in the end and therefore left me with a few confidence problems right now. I've always run a marathon better if I run it very conservatively in the beginning and have enough fuel for the end... but lately with the tail miles of my long runs being pretty miserable, I can't help but wonder if Elaine has it all right: you run like hell and bank time in the first half because no matter what, you die at the end anyway. Hear that, Elaine?? :) No, I won't run it like that cuz if I have to walk, that's a major defeat for me, but I have a LOT of thinking to do from now til then. And a lot of confidence adjustment. Ugh.
I really don't like the feel of the long run over; it makes that finish line that much closer. And makes me that much more nervous. I always run better when I have a purpose behind my running so it makes me edgy with Portland being so close and my confidence smashed. I just really don't like the taper because I have to really be careful with my diet and I can't run as much. Running, the thing that puts my mind at ease is the one thing I get to do less of during one of the times when my mind is the most tangled. Hum....
Time to think of some new goals and time to fine-tune some Portland details.
This morning, I went to a pilates/stretching class for an hour and a half. Never been, never even heard of this place. An ex-Bronco that works with me recommended this place, Artistic Body, and said it would cure all my achy muscles. Well, I certainly felt like a fish out of water; I had no idea what I was doing (but the instructor was incredible and sat by me most of the time and showed me every move...he's an incredible runner himself and knew personally all the people in the class. A very warm individual), and I'm certain my body parts are just as sore from yesterday's run as they would be had I not gone, but I DO think it was a great class, the stretching felt great, an I plan to go again. I wonder if it would be better to go to this class day 1 and day 2 after a long run to maximum muscle relief. But who has the time or the money!!
I'm getting a little more excited about the CO Relay and Brendan and I spent some time today making pickle signs. I'll take some pictures before the relay. I have two days of orientation for Abbey so gonna be a little busy this week. Relay starts at 9am on Friday morning!!
On an unrelated running note: I'm not as emotional today as I thought I would be as I spend the last full day with Abbey, helping her pack up her room, before she heads off and is an an official college student tomorrow. Come tomorrow, though, that may be a totally different story....
24 miles run
1 pilates/stretching class
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Just to get an extra little usage of my membership fee, I looked at the pool in envy followed by a few bicep curls with the ole 20 lb weights....which about kicked my butt.
Tomorrow, I'm headed to Target with the spare gift card I absentmindedly bought two of for my neighbor's baby shower and I'm going to purchase a small FM radio so I can listen to something other than "I wanna hold em' like they do in Texas, please..." and maybe find some new songs on the radio I can add to my 'New Portland' playlist.
Any suggestions for this new list is greatly welcomed.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I finally returned to the track last night; it's been awhile and one of those things that's been on my list of things to get back to. Not sure where the intervals have gone; I think somewhere lost in a barrage of failed tempo runs, perhaps.
I actually went to the track, not the treadmill, and ran 'em; I can't even recall the last track workout I had; well before the heat of summer kicked in. Harboring some frustrations by some unintelligent comments from people fueled my adrenaline and I knocked off 8x800's - and felt pretty darn good. Yea! Maybe I just need a few more comments like that to spark some energy in my legs! The legs seem to be feeling better, finally, from PC and my glute is somewhat happy. Not overly-so but moderately-so. I'll take it - as I continue to stretch it.
A crazy day at school....off to the gym for weight training and some serious stretching....
8 miles run