Wednesday, September 30, 2009

List O Portland

Current standings to previous post "issues" - and a few new ones to add:

Things of Good:
Calves: feel good. Not great but way better than they were. Elizabeth, masochistic massage therapist, told me that most likely, I would have pulled a pretty major calf muscle had I run on them in Portland. Okay, I have had some pretty crappy massages and people working on me about this issue or that which have landed me with zero progress or even exacerbated my problems but 3 sessions with Elizabeth and I hear the talk and I feel the results. I totally trust her. So I believe the statement she said on doing some major, possibly permanent, damage in Portland had I run on my calves. She states there's a lot of small knots in there but nothing we can't work on after my return and nothing that is going to cause any serious setbacks. Yeah! On my run short hill run tonight, they certainly felt good - and they rarely ever feel good doing hills.

Quads: a little tight but E (let's just abbreviate her name so that I don't have to spell that puppy out countless times) felt nothing in there and told me to just stretch the ga-geebies outta them. I'm trying.

Right Heel: Turns out it's my Achilles and it's being annoying due to the stress on that stupid left ankle. E said to warm water Epsom salt soak it before I go to bed and to roll it on a tennis ball. Will do both before I go to bed tonight but it's feeling slightly better.

Weight and Body fat: Happy to report - DOWN! Yea!!!! Taper usually means an added few lbs and I physically do not see the muscle definition in my body that I was sporting a few weeks ago but as T-man told me today, I'm eating a bit more salt right now and I'm drinking a lot (and I mean a LOT) more of that good-for-me H2O so my muscle tone isn't as prominent as it was (will work on that upon my return). But a quick BF check this morning, twice even, confirmed that yes, the body fat is down. And my scale is holding - not climbing. YES!!

Weather: I am knocking on wood: currently, weather in Portland looks ideal!!

Portland RW Loophead teammates: 5 amazing gifted athletes and I are joining together to form a team. And that's our name. I'm very excited to meet them, we've emailed and conversed numerous times - I know we're going to be good friends.

Things of not so good:
Head: Though not as bad as it was last week, I have a lot of ringing in my ears and occasionally my head begins to miserably throb. Ugh!

Sinuses: Right at this exact moment - good. When I woke up this morning - horrible. As Katy Perry says: hot and cold, in and out, up and down....

Back: It's a constant ache. Constant. Not external to the touch, it's somewhere inside and where exactly, I cannot tell you except it's lower. I'm getting concerned about this. I called E yesterday to explain that no progress and that it possibly moved a little backwards. She told me to heat, heat and more heat. I'm walking around at work with a heating pad on my back...and don't even ask how I constructed such a contraption to stay on me while standing. I won't even bring up the cord to the wall; suffice it to say, all is a challenge and I'm certainly I resemble some sort of strange growth from underneath my shirt. The kids enjoy it - love making fun of it.

Sleep: Or lack thereof.

Those little details that have me in a tizz:
Pace: I know what my pace should be to obtain my sub-3:45 marathon (honestly, I've given up on the 3:40...I'll be elated with anything under 3:45 - even 4-hours - really!!). I don't, however, know how to run the marathon with it (nor if I can even DO it). Go out a bit faster and bank some time cuz as my dear friend Elaine swears, you are doing a death march at the end regardless of what you have. Run an even, consistent 8:28 pace? Run the downhills fast and take the uphills to recover? Charge the uphills and coast on the down? Wear a pace band. Don't wear a pace band. Wear my Garmin. Don't wear my Garmin. Wear my Garmin and dump it at mile 6 (If I can find my posse...if my posse is even AT mile 6) so that I don't over-kill the first few miles, which I am notorious for and have ruined more than one race by doing so. I'm not a fan of dumping my Garmin. I'm not a fan of even wearing my Garmin period because it has the tendency to stress me out whenever it decides to cop an attitude and switches out of it's training mode seconds before the start of every single run/race I've ever done. (Note to self: PLEASE learn more about using your Garmin!!!! ) If I wear my Garmin, I'll also need to wear my regular watch and wow, what a total geek-head I'll look like, huh? And will I just get so overly frustrated with so many body adornments??!! And finally - pace groups. Run with the 3:40? 3:45? Or bag 'em entirely and do my own thing? I'm not even sure I can handle a "group" for that long of a period!

Nutrition/Hydration: I have bad stomach cramp problems. T-man says it's due to hydration and not being hydrated enough going into the race. I'll agree. But I think it's more, too. I think it's a combination of: hydration, nutrition and heat (before and during). I think there are certain things I put into my body during one of these lack of hydrated and nourished runs that exacerbate my churning stomach. I believe evil GU is one of them. But not always, just when the plants are aligned just right. One thing I can stomach pretty well are those Sport Beans, cherry flavored only, and a couple electrolytes powders: Cytomax and Accelerade. I end up playing chemist en route mixing water with my powder at the aid stations. Major pain. I've been known to actually just put the powder in my mouth and wash it down with water...I mean, it gets mixed together in the same place, right? So I'm in a huge tug-of-war with myself on whether to carry my cumbersome fuelbelt that tends to slip around my waist lately (must be all that weight loss, huh?). But it easily carries my water and electrolytes. A pb sandwich I think needs to be my nutrition instead of the dreaded GU. I can put my little make-me-faster electrolyte powder and beans in my shirt pocket...but what about my water? And my pb sandwich?

Well-meaning-posse: I am eternally grateful for SBS of Marathon Moms (very excited to meet her) and her friends whom have offered to meet me along various points in the course and help pace me. I can hand them my water and my pb sandwich....but what if I miss them!!??!! I've never met them (will have dinner with them the night before, thanks guys!!), what if I'm delusional (come on, we're all delusional at mile 22!) and I run right by them, forgetting what mile marker they are to meet me and woosh, I go right by?!!?? And now I'm out of sync for my hydration/nutrition. T-man said to make signs for them to hold up at the exchange points. I have a plead out for such request.

Race Day Clothes: I'm very superstitious. VERY! I have clothes that have failed me that I cannot wear for fear they are jinxed and I have clothes that have done me well, that I cannot wear because they are sacred. Even socks! I like to buy something, either my fav Nike Tempo running shorts (wow! The Nike website has 45 colors listed. 45!!! I thought my drawer full of about 15 was rather good...I gots a lots a shopping to do!) or a new shirt. But the shirt has to have a pocket in it due to the fact I'm not sure if I am carrying my fuel belt so will need a place for beans and pb sandwich (if I carry it). It's a vicious cycle! Vicious!! I bought a new white shirt at the Nike store downtown a couple weekends ago and mistakenly wore it on a bad long run. Now it's jinxed. Plus, it has a "see-though" issue. Not really ...but kinda. Plus. how will my posse find "a girl with a white shirt" out of the masses of people? Two other shirt possibilities with pockets that I have not worn at a race: a light blue one, which I love the color but sometimes it's constricting and other is brown, which I know no shorts that really go well with brown. T-man said pink hat so that my group can easily spot me. This makes sense...but it then brings a challenge on what goes with the pink hat (which I bought at the Boston Marathon...therefore, is sacred. See above). I know...the madness, eh?

Park City and Boston: I still know how much Park City hurt at the end. Boston, too. Enough said.

ipod: I don't have my Portland playlist done and my good friend, Mr. Clawson, whom I still owe big time for those Martini's back in June (thanks, Jim!) gave me a slew of CD's - which I have listened to on my way to the mountains last weekend but have yet to load onto my iPod.

Packing: I haven't packed a thing. I don't even have my suitcase out. For that matter, I don't even have a list started. Something is way off kilter here, I'm usually packed for days ahead....

I think there's a million more details but I am just too tired right now ( see above), my iPod needs to be loaded (see above) and I need to start making some lists (see above). I won't say I'm obsessive-compulsive but one thing off in an event so large can greatly alter the outcome. That I DO know about the race!

Had a great set of 400's yesterday and a few miles of some hill repeats in my neighborhood tonight that felt okay. That is, by far, the greatest mental boost I could have asked for this week! Also had a nice, but too brief, talk with Rob (t-man) today. Now, if my magic wands to fix the ole back and the heel, life could be pretty sweet come Sunday!! A quick rub-down massage tomorrow to get all lose ends tightened up and all tight ends loose and then it's on the plane and outta town! BTW, I hate to fly...let's add that to my list of not so good!

Run well my St. George running friends on Saturday, ditto to my new friends doing Portland.


Unknown said...

Rock on, Jill! You'll do great!

Tim said...

Wow, I think you put more time and thought and effort into each day than I do in a month when it comes to training. I need to get my butt in gear.

Good luck in Portland!!

Tim said...

Pace: My opinions based on my races and this applies to me, and may not apply to you.

1. Skip the Garmin. They are not accurate enough. The one and only time I used one in a marathon was Boston, to try to keep a certain pace. I DID keep that pace, and ended up behind my goal time b/c my Garmin was simply wrong. Go with a pace group or get a pace tattoo or just know your splits. It's nice to run with the pace group. It reduces stress a lot b/c the pacer is doing all the thinking for you. It's not a problem being in the group. I just hang about 10-20 feet from the pacer off to one side or another. Never had a problem or felt like I was boxed in a big group or anything. Usually these pacers are amazing at keeping up exactly the right pace.

2. Shoot to hit 13.1 miles at exactly half of your goal time. If there are pacers stay right with the pacer. Do not surge ahead. After mile 13, if you feel good, slightly pick up the pace, but not much b/c the wall is coming. Save your legs for that.

3. Try to slow down going up hills such that your effort stays roughly the same. You can make up that time coming back down the hills. If you're in a pace group, you can let yourself fall back a little bit going uphill, then catch them going down. Pushing too hard on uphills will wear you down.

Regarding the stomach cramps, lately I've been thinking that we ALL are overdoing the electrolyte/Gu stuff and that doesn't make our stomachs happy when our digestion system has to start working too much when maximum blood flow is needed also in our running muscles. It's probably too late to experiment now, but you might want to be a bit minimalist on taking in the sugars/electrolytes. Water is mainly what you'll need for a 3:40 effort. That's my $0.02. (I'm actually pondering trying a half-marathon taking in only water during the race, like in the good old days, and seeing if it makes any difference. I would take in plenty of energy/electrolytes before the race of course. I don't think I'd ever do a full marathon on only water though.)

Shari said...

I obviously need to put more thought in to my running, Jill. I need some kind of running makeover. Too bad they don't have a show on Discovery for that - maybe you would nominate me for an extreme running makeover ; )

Leslie said...

Have you tried Hammer Nutrition before Jill? Just something to play with for next time around. I'm a die hard Hammer loyalist :)

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