Sunday, March 31, 2013

week in miles and photos

sunday - 19 (6 easy, 6 steady, 6 mgp, 1 cooldown)
monday - 8 easy
tuesday - rest
wednesday - workout (2 x 4 mile tempo) 11 total
thursday - 10 easy
friday - 11 with 10 x 200m hills thrown in the middle
saturday - 20 
Total: 80 miles

This week was rounded out with double long runs. My buddies, Josh and Dave, were headed to Sammamish River Trail for 20 miles easy. I wanted some flat miles, change of scenery and time to hang out with friends I don't often see. The downside was they were going on Saturday afternoon. Which gave me two quality workouts back to back. I asked my coach what he thought and he said: ice bath on Friday, ice bath on Saturday. Recovery is key. Sooo... I think that means, oy vey, fine go for it if you're smart about it. 

We ran it a little fast, (7:25s), but it was pancake flat and talking was easy. So maybe it's just that Seattle hills skew my pace-perception. It was a beautiful day, 65 and sunny. Great company, and a good shake up to my routine. 

sammamish river trail,  photo credit 
The rest of the weekend was recovery. Relaxed on Saturday night, slept in past 7:30am today. The big event of the day was walking down to the farmers market. I napped in the afternoon and did a 6 mile shake out. Which was pretty brutal, reminding me that yes, yesterday could have been slowed down. But also 20 miles just brings that very specific pain. 19 doesn't hit it. 20... is just something different. I did another ice bath this afternoon.

taking a tip from these bebe bunnies: recover

only thing missing are tiny bunny pals...

Owen and I dyed eggs tonight. A little late but, hey, it's still Easter. For Easter dinner we enjoyed oysters and wine that we'd picked up at the Farmers Market. 

wine and oysters from washington state
nothing like shucking your own oysters...tastes like summer
 A post dinner walk turned into a race to see the sunset at our favorite lookout. 
made it just in time!
How was your weekend? Long run?

the runner's quest for happiness

This week Erin Ward (aka Jungle Chicken) asked the big life question: why does running *have* to suck so much? In fact just go read her blog, you've heard my ramblings before...

I was joking with Sally on our run this other day that she tricked me into rejoining this crazy sport. How in 3 short years did I go from "I'll never sign up for that carrot fart parade again!" to training for a marathon PR?

I've fallen back into this sport for real always making sure I keep a full life. I'm not a type A, prep my homemade granola bars on Sunday night kind of person to begin with. And outside of Oiselle, 98% of my friends are non-runners. At first it was all too easy to maintain the parts of my life that filled out my happy runner life profile. The concerts, weekend trips with unscheduled rest days, happy hours, skiing...

But as I've started to zero in on my May 22 goal race I find that

1. My joy *is* in the running and in the work (and especially in a good workout, whenever I have one)
2. I can still fill in the rest of my life with my interests just not the same ones or the same way
3. I'm effing tired (and if I lose track of recovery I get the flu...)

It's about being true to myself. It's cheating myself to pretend I can carry my goal and also live like I don't have one. I'm constantly trying to strike a balance that makes me happy. Like the night before the St Paddy's Day dash I went out to my friends' birthday because I love them. I hung out for a couple drinks, caught up with everyone and left after the champagne toast at 10:30pm. It was a bit of a bummer, but I reminded myself that racing makes me tick and the joy and high would be worth it. And it was.

This Friday night I sat in an ice bath, while my friends and husband were at a comedy show. But that choice was actually easy to make. I was so exhausted from my 4:45am workout wake-up call that I would have been the dreaded distance runner zombie. I know from experience that chick doesn't get invited out again. Better to put her on ice and send her to bed.

Really this level of running keeps me from chasing second rate highs. So the only thing I'm truly giving up are late nights and liver abuse. I'll find time to maintain the things that are life giving like... music, hanging out with Owen, good food, loving friends, fashion and design stalking, playing with my camera and pouring my passion into Oiselle. The latter being the only reason I have the joy of running back in my life to begin with.

last thursday: sera cahoone at the triple door
+Megan Fay ( came along for our 2nd non-sweaty date.
playing with new camera before the show, post alley gum wall was the obvious first stop...

Monday, March 18, 2013

lucky number 3

I added a circle to help you in the Where's Mac game... the winner is lined up right behind the devil. yep.
Yesterday I lined up to run the St. Patty's Day Dash in Seattle. This race has a huge turn out, one of the biggest in the country we were told between 'bring back our Sonics' cheers at the starting line.

I was going into the race relaxed but ready to get into some pain. My instructions, verbatim, were: go out hard but controlled for the first two, then come back like they're running out of Guinness. Luckily when you hit the 2 mile mark it's all downhill. Or not so lucky for me, I think a couple of hills would have brought the first and second women back to me to a bit.

I was in fourth until 1.5 miles, having a small conversation with myself about where I should be. I decided I should stop being a pansy and place top 3, so I gunned it past third. Making sure to look suuuuper relaxed like, whatever, I can go even faster. Tricks aren't just for kids.

I watched first and second battle ahead of me (one dressed in a tutu and one dressed in buns and crop top). I thought I'll let them battle and start my gain. I made two tactical errors. I didn't look at the course and assumed the finish would be at the start. Which lead to error two, not laying it out soon enough. I'm not sure I could have caught them, but I should have closed the gap a bit more. And in general I need to pretend I can win any race I line up at, why not?

I had fun racing the entire time. Even the last painful 800. I felt smooth and strong and ready to make moves. And as the woman across the line took my name down, I saw PRIZE MONEY!! Whaaaat? I had no idea.

Of course it was burning a hole in my pocket even though I had yet to receive it in the mail. I've been dreaming of upgrading my DSLR. I've had the same Craigslist-bought Nikon D40 for five years. Yesterday night, after a great dinner of corned beef and cabbage with the in-laws in Tacoma, we stopped off at Target where the Nikon D3100 was marked down $100 and I brought that baby home.

I couldn't sleep so I roamed around the apartment trying out all the settings, reading the manual and dreaming up all the adventures we'd go on. Sadly, I had no where to go last night so here's some photos of my living room!  Stunning.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

going to california...

After making the tough call not to run the San Diego Half I still headed down for a hit of vitamin D and to hang out with Sarah, who was generous enough to take this relative internet stranger in for 28 hours. 

I guess Led Zepplin said it best, I was going to California with an aching in my heart. Although no woman has been smoking all my stuff or drinking all my wine. Thank the good lord, I was drinking all my own wine. Friday night I was low. Just lolling around the house. Owen and I took a late night walk to look at the Seattle city lights from California Avenue. The next morning I headed out. 

To say I'm glad I went down to Cali is an understatement. It was just the shake-up I needed. Getting to know Sarah was a lot of fun. It was refreshing to just click with her especially because we didn't really, really know each other before hand. Only knew each other's avatars.

Saturday I went for an easy (hard) 5 miles along the beach with Sarah. And then chilled out the rest of the day. I wasn't feeling 100% and ladder golf at one point was too much of a push for me. Weak sauce. I hate being sick. I find it completely humiliating.

Sunday I got 10 miles in. I ran slowly and took breaks when I needed them. Then we got into some Oiselle shenanigans, a beach photoshoot and hit some cross training on the beach cruisers.

Missing an "A" race was tough. But it was what it was. I've revamped my spring racing plan, recharged and proven once again that the people you meet on the internet aren't ax murders. This blogging community we have here... is exceptional. And runners, in my biased opinion, are the best people on earth. 

Friday, March 8, 2013

best laid plans. *%$#

This week I was ready for peak week, pre-race tune up week. Oh boy, were you all in for a doozy of a blog post all about eating well, sleeping well, easy workouts, getting geared up. Until Monday when, within hours, I went from functioning human to complete flu baby. Slept all day Tuesday, no exaggeration, and barely returned to the living by Thursday. Awesome.

don't worry I'll still show you a picture of salad. #peakweek

I held out emailing the race director until after a test run on Thursday, which made it clear that my coach's declaration of 'NO racing' was the right answer.

There is one part of me learning a lesson and making a smart decision.
"You're too sick to make it three 9 minute miles without puke inducing cough attacks. Mmm yeah."
There is second part of me throwing a tantrum.
"Friiiiiig! This is part of your barely scrapped together plan. Mother trucker! C'mon just run it you sissy, you'll be fine!!"
And there is some tiny obnoxious third part of me being a total a$$hole.
"Stop making such a big deal out of everything. See, *this* is why we shouldn't care about running again. Disappointment. We've done this dance before. Boring... now pass the wine."
I'm going to let part one and two exist, even if they battle it out for a few days, but part three has got to go. Because part three isn't a genuine part of me. It's a cheat and liar. And it's a waste of time.

I decided to go to California anyway, I need to get from under this moldy blanket (sorry Seattle, it's just how I feel right now). I was going to find a cheap hotel in Long Beach, where I'm flying in and out of, and just hang out. But fellow Oiselle runner, Sarah, offered me a better, less sulky option of her staying with her. I'm looking forward to low key running, getting to know a teammate and possible Oiselle shenanigans. 

Doesn't mean I wasn't wide awake last night listing every possible half marathon, 10k and marathon between now and November. I am so ready to race. Being patient with my recovery is going to be hard. But hopefully taking the time to plan out my next half year or so of racing will help.