Monday, May 3, 2010

Yea, May!

Ahhh, May! Spring has sprung in Denver. The grass is turning green, the chirping birds wake me up each morning, my crabapple tree in my backyard is heavy with dark pink blossoms, the Rockies are doing well on their losing streak, my blog has a fresh, new look…. I’ve been waiting for this month to arrive for about the past, oh, 4 months…..

First week back running post-Boston and my legs are moving again and feeling pretty well (heel aside). I’m doing a little bit of speed work right now; the work I’m doing isn’t to go after any 10K PR’s or anything, what I did this week is a series of short, fast drills to help combat damage I did when my Boston training was a disaster. I got me some grand plans and those plans include never repeating the pathetic condition for which I was in when I entered Boston. Yeah, I had a blast in Boston but I want to run the next race well, and that’s going to take a lot of work.

Here’s the scoop: somewhere after my little February lung and sinus fungus fiasco, I simply lost the desire to go after Boston. Sure, I’d get a few days sprinkled in the whole mix where I felt great and thought my cloud was lifted and I was rearing to go; but overall, the big picture was that I just really didn’t care enough to fight the battle. There’s personal reason behind this but I think in my mind, I didn’t really see the urge to kill myself to get into mediocre condition after being sick, so I simply didn’t try – a true energy slump. I ran Boston well last year, it wasn’t worth the fight this year. End of story.

But I miss “it” – the whole marathon training regiment. And I want it. I finally feel it, I think. Maybe Boston panning out as it did was a blessing, in a sense, because in addition to PRing a great friendship with Katie, I learned that I DO miss the conditioning and insane training and how complete and whole my body feels when it’s pushed to a fatigued state from pure marathon training. I’ve never felt as much an urgency to get home and get moving again as I did after Boston. For the most part, when I’ve completed a marathon, I return home with a feeling of disarray – something I committed many months of my life, is now over and done. “Now what?” Or worse, “Was that the end?” Being 47 and having run the vast majority of my life, you gotta reach a point somewhere where you just can’t do it any longer – and I never really know if that last marathon is it, if that’s all I have left in me. It’s not easy to crank out the miles at my age and for all the 35 years I’ve been running; I don’t recover as quickly as I used to and aches and pains are now the norm, not the exception….and I’m not the best at listening to my body when it screams, “ouch” cuz let’s face it, I never used to so I’m not programmed to do it now.

I’ve spent a lot of at the end of April thinking and I just don’t feel my heart is done yet. I may not PR a marathon any more - I’m not really sure nor do I really even care – what I want, and what I’m ready to do, is fight like heck to find out what’s left in me. My friend, Garbo, is truly a man a wisdom and wit - someone I highly admire and here is what he told me after Boston: "…..Don't go weighing that heart yet,Jill. It's nowhere near being done yet." I was ecstatic to read that comment from him, I was glad someone of his stature believed in me... it meant a lot. He’s been there before, he knows my agony….and the needy person I am, value words like this. I have revenge in Chicago (and Marcia’s in with me, right girlfriend???) and it’s time to get ready. That’s why I’m doing the speed work right now – it’s the first step in my process to transform my current state of blob, to combat the body fat that built for the past several months when I didn’t really care. Now I care, and now I’m doing something about it!

One of the best things about running is that it cuts across the crap that litters life and relationships in other areas.
Yea, I’m ready for May!

Monday and Tuesday: 30-second, high speed sprints at 4% incline, with 1 minute active recovery, and each 30 second explosive getting faster until I reached a pace of 5:52 (yikes!! How we’d love to run a marathon at that pace, eh??!!), for 25 minutes. Then 3 miles easy miles followed by 40 minutes of core training. Good stuff.
Wed: off
Thursday: 3x1 mile repeats, each getting faster (last at 7:25 so we’re not talking anywhere near where I was last fall), followed by more core work. Yah, that’s 3 days of core training, thank you very much!!!
Friday: 6.5 easy miles
Saturday: “Athletic Training” class at the gym. This class was full of speed and agility drills that left me breathless and tired. Perfect! The drills in this class are loaded in the pages of my “Brain Training for Runners” book that I love so much so I was glad I was in a class doing them, as I tend to blow these off on my own. Of course, beings I have no coordination skills whatsoever, I twisted my ankle running in and out of the tires. It’s the same ankle I twist at least 5 times a year (it seems) and it’s just one of my weak-links. It’s throbbing a little right now, but it’s okay.
Sunday: I ran a 5K. Yep, me, who can’t run 5K’s, ran one. Sole purpose was just to get in a little extra speed work in (aka: fat burning – ha). My goal was not to kill myself racing it but do it at about 10K pace so it felt “Hard yet controlled” Um, yeah, turns out it was a tad slower than 10K pace …. and it was hard. Period. There was nothing easy about it and nothing controlled. This the-worst-ever-in-my-life 5K confirmed: I’m out of racing shape!!! But that’s okay. That’s perfect actually….I have nowhere to go but up!!!! This is my starting point, and I’m ready to roll!!!!!

An update on my right heel: After running store woman scared the crap out of me with the whole, “I’m betting it’s a stress fracture….”, I bought new shoes with more cushion in them (I doubt I’ll ever wear a light-weight racer again!!) and am having less pain. Not totally pain-free, but not even close to the level of pain at which it was. I raced that lovely worst-ever 5K and did not feel my heel whatsoever!! Woohooo!!!
Me and my boys: twin #2 (Brendan) and twin #1 (Ryan) all 5K'd done!
Abbey came for the free hotdogs!
The race was "Rockies Home Run 5K" which benefited the battered women's shelter. You got to run inside the stadium on the warning track- cool, huh??

I have to brag about my friend Leslie, she raced an incredible Ironman, her stats below (note how her marathon time was faster than my Boston time....), Congrats, Leslie:
SWIM (2.4 miles) Bike(112 miles) Run(26.2 miles) Overall
1:05:47 6:40 4:13 12:09:03
And congrats to my dear friend, Shari, who PR'd and BQ's in torential rains in Cincinnati's Flying Pig!!! Shari's gone through so much personal torment lately, this victory couldn't be any sweeter!!
Remember that cool necklace that dear Tara gave me for my birthday? Her friend made that necklace and has started her business, selling some really cool running-related jewlery for us junkies. Please check her site out - I know you won't be disappointed!

Week 17 2010:
Week’s Running totals
April Running Totals: 128.5
Running Total for 2010: 750.45
Weight training: 3
Athletic Training class: 1

46 comments:

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

Love your new header pic! Did you take it?

AM-GoalsfortheWeek! said...

i'm such a sucker for pics of you and your twinsie dudes;-) they're so cute.

will check out the jewelry site. And nice bloggy makeover! woo-hoo! the New May Jill is Blooming!;-)

Leslie said...

Thanks Jill! So great to have so many friends cheering along :)

Ashley Perry said...

this is so inspirational. good luck and stay positive

ajh said...

Must have been fun racing with your twins!!

Marlene said...

YAY, Jill is back! Can't wait to tag along as you get back into training mode and get those legs moving fast again. You are a rockstar!!

Awesome that the new, more-cushioned shoes are helping with your heel.

marathonmaiden said...

speedwork? already? girl you are amazing. i can't even fathom running wicked fast like that at this point :)

Jennifer said...

You are such an amazing woman! I like how you can put it all out there and see all the stuff (bad and good) for what it is and then get on with it! Keep running girl, you are already back at it!

C2Iowa said...

Mellow is the man (woman)... Who knows what he's been missing... Many many men... Cant see the open road.

Jill - Things are going to fall into place and you will see what kind of salt you hold and what is left within you. Time is not the enemy, it is a clarifier.

+1 Jennifer's comments.

Jenn said...

Hey there! I may have to give this high speed sprint thing a try. I am wimpy when it comes to the speedwork-Just like the LONG SLOW miles!! I really do hate the 5K and the 10K but you're right-they are forced speedwork! I always laugh at your body image comments! You look great but makes me laugh just the same. I really gained weight the last 3 weeks of my training cycle and the week after. UGHH! I was up 6 pounds-OUCH!!! Oh well-something to focus on now I guess! Good luck with all the continued training! You've got a lot left in store for you Jill-I'm anxious to see what it all is!!

Teamarcia said...

Whew you are back with a vengeance girl! I hope I can even halfway keep up. But you're right we will be all over Chi-town come October. Nice, nice training week and congrats on the 5k. I'm not looking forward to my gut-buster 5k this weekend.

Christi said...

Jill, I found your post real inspiring today. I know want to go out and get my head back on straight!

Good luck with the training and I hope spring has really hit the Rockies!!! I am tired of snow!

misszippy said...

Love the new look! Also really like what Garbanzo had to say. Very true, I'm sure. And man, running is soooo mental, isn't it? I can totally make or break my races depending on how I'm feeling mentally going into it (as my bad race this weekend proved!).

Barefoot AngieB said...

"One of the best things about running is that it cuts across the crap that litters life and relationships in other areas."
This is fantastic!!

Megan said...

Why do we feel a sense of loss when training is done?

Now I want a hot dog. ;)

Evolving Through Running said...

Very introspective and inspirational post. Glad to see that you looked inside and still found the fire burning. I can relate to the challenges with recovery, aches, and pains, but everything good seems to come with its share of bruises. Keep on laying down the miles!

HappyTrails said...

Go Jill! Maybe it just takes a little bounce off the "bottom" to get us grabbing for the top!
Maybe you need to ditch some of that boring pavement crud for the fresh scenery and tread of a good trail race??? It might be the missing piece of refreshment you need! Hmmmm????
Just sayin........ :-) Keep up the hard work-remember we are all cheering for you!
Kathleen

ShutUpandRun said...

I love your honesty in this post. Sometimes we just don't feel it and that's okay. But sounds like you came back to a place of really wanting to training, not feeling obligated to train and that's when you can do your best work. Looking forward to seeing you this weekend!!

onelittletrigirl said...

Wow this post had so much going on!

-I love your honesty
-Sounds like you have a great plan
-Photos are great!
-Leslie rules. All IM finishers are amazing!!

onebadrunner said...

now that sounds more like it!
I've missed you.

Slomohusky said...

Great looking boys. Fun posting Jill. You will knock em down the next Marathon (the miles that is).

ilikemargarine said...

Oh, man. Running on the Rockies field? As a pitiful D-Backs fan I have to take back any good will I may have sent your way. Unless of course you stepped off the warning track and trampled some grass, in which case we're BFFs...

Anne said...

Thanks for a very inspiring post...Rock on!

lindsay said...

i feel like we are in a very similar place - now and pre-boston. giving up/not worth the fight and now - motivated! :) we can do this! we will rebuild and fight another fight.

Heather said...

I loved this post, and I love your passion. It's great to see you fired up for training and going for it in Chicago!

DRog said...

Ahhhhhh...Denver in May...I do miss it. Ski the bumps at A-Basin and head back to Denver for 18 holes of golf~! Loved the pic of the twins (they look easier than 4 yr old twins) love the Coors Field pic (lived there 95 first year) and LOVE the post and excitement to Battle the current state of Blob! hahaha
-D

Julie said...

Hi Jill,
Welcome back girl!! I just love your posts because they are just so you:) They are honest, genuine and real! You have so many wonderful good things that are going to happen for you in the future...I just have a feeling:) I agree with Kathleen...you should try a trail run! Take care Jill:) Love and hugs!

Kenley said...

Love the new spring like blog thingy and the picture is awesome. Unsure of what to do seems to be on your mind. When in doubt, run....but easier said than done I imagine. Like Julie said I would try a trail race/run. I have recently gotten into that and it has resparked my fondness of running all together as well as strengthen my whole body and especially ankles, etc....... Take care

Glenn Jones said...

Wow. Do you have any idea how timely this post was for me today? You hit the nail on the head the way I've been feeling for the past couple months. PR'ing is becoming increasingly difficult. Training seems to be hours upon hours of drudgery. The fire needs some stoking. I can't tell you how eye opening it is to read that this happens to serious runners too! Thank you thank you thank you!

Melissa said...

Can't wait to check out the jewelry site!!

Glad you are back in the groove. Love the pics. I hope my kids will run with me some day, however, after watching LM run the bases last night at baseball, I'm doubting him. :) LOL!

Irene said...

After my fun with a hip fracture, I sort of went through something similar. I started to look at PRs by age group. I may never PR certain races ever again, but I can certainly take that 5 (or 10) year age group span and see how well I can do with in those years.

Glad the heel is doing well!

Petraruns said...

What a great post! You are wonderfully, brutally, painfully and endearingly honest. And you're not alone. We all have those times where we DON'T give it our all. I don't think you should beat yourself up too much - it's impossible to give it your all all of the time. You're back in the game now - that's all that matters. You're still here. And don't give me any of that crap about you being done. You're not.

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

Great post Jill. Love the new cheery look to the blog. I have been running for years too. It will at some point be impossible to PR, are we there? Maybe so, maybe not! In the mean time, let's train hard and see what happens. If we never have another pr, the hard training will still make us feel good. In 11 days, I will join you on your quest.

ajh said...

I am doing the Summer Roundup Trail 12K when I am in Colorado.

Meg said...

Running from the heart is where it's "AT!" I really appreciated your mentioning it last week and in your post. You have a huge heart for others, your family and your running and you ALWAYS express that through your blog with such honesty. That's what is going to keep you motivated to accomplish your dreams and goals this summer and fall. I love your blog makeover, the flower is gorgeous. HUGS Jill!

Adam said...

Love this post. I really miss marathon training when I am not doing it too. I sort of 'have' to have a race on the horizon or I don't seem right.

chris mcpeake said...

Way to jump right back into that speed work.. amazing

Katie A. said...

It's offical, you're coming to SF and I'm so excited! And I love when I get a mention in YOUR blog, I feel so special :)
You're going to do great in Chi town, I just know it. Plus, you're going to be back for me in Boston, so you better BQ in SF! Love you!

Anne said...

I just started using Sof Sole gel inserts and the extra cushioning/padding is doing wonders for me. I hear ya on searching again for that marathon spark (and, in your case, finding it). I prefer the training to the event, always.

Johann said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! I've lived in Johannesburg my whole life. It's great that your friend is x JHB. You have an awesome blog!

Suzy said...

Love the new layout!

All Things Jaime said...

I found you! I've been seriously missing your posts on the Loop! :) Glad to know you're still alive and running well! I've been dabbling at creating my own blog, too!

Tara said...

How in the hell did you sneak a post under my radar???? I've REALLY been out of it.

You are so going to get back to your training and your gonna do it with all of your heart and soul! Cuz that's how you roll girl! 47 is YOUNG, you still have lots of marathons left in you. You know it too! :)

Congrats on your 5k. I love that pic of Abby with those hot dogs! That is soo cute!

Thanks for the shout out to my friend's website. :)

Tara said...

BTW-I really like the new blog look. Very spring like.

LMC said...

Great post! It certainly does not sound like your "heart is done yet". That alone will keep you going and another PR or BQ may not matter cause your following your heart! Great week of workouts. I like the new blog look and especially the flower in the header!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

Didn't take you long!! WOW! :) Loving the new look too!!