Saturday, July 31, 2010

Battle for Ballston 5K: race report

Okay, it's super full-disclosure time.  (This will be long).

I had IT band surgery in 2006.  I didn't really start running again until 2008.  My first 5K post-surgery was on 10/14/08, and I ran a 32:45 and wanted to die.  I signed up 2 days before the event and was bib number 13.  I think less than 100 people ran it, and while I wasn't dead last, I was alone.  
Ugh, done.

Since then, I've run a handful of races around my various injuries - stress fracture, other IT band issues, weird foot mystery no one ever figured out.  I've also had a DNS for 3 major races (10M, 13.1, 10M) that I've done 80% of the training for and gotten injured within 2 weeks of the race.  Running and I have a love-hate relationship.  I love running, and it hates me IN THE FACE.

The second race I ran post-surgery was a Turkey Trot (November 2008) up in PA.  My sister and her friend were running it, and my only goal was to finish enough ahead of her that I could casually say, "oh good, you're FINALLY done" when she rolled in.  It was the hilliest motherfucking race I've ever done in my entire life, and I choked and gasped to finish in 29:07 - my 5K PR.  Hush, fast people, just button your lip.
My 5K PR.  A turkey still beat me.

My life went through tons of upheaval from the time I got hurt (March 2009) until the time I started running again (January 2010).  And I've been injured all spring, but fighting desperately against it.  At last week's 5K, I had to stop so many times, and was hurting so badly by the end that I spent the week secretly thinking about when I could schedule the surgery to fit between fall cycling and spring racing.  The few 5K's since the crazy foot injury (33:17, 31:34, 31:16) have led me to believe that it was going to be a while before I could even touch that PR.  The treadmill running I've been doing at the gym has been much faster, but I just don't trust it - even with the .5% - 1.5% incline on.
31:34. I'm the slog in the background.  
My shoulder is grossly swollen because I'm 10 days post-surgery.
My ass is grossly swollen because I eat too much ice cream.

I didn't realize how small the race was until I showed up this morning, but I was happy for that.  I was also really glad to be meeting 5-7 of my awesome twitter friends there, even though they are all much speedier than me.  I decided last night to chase my PR.  I don't know why.  I think it was the beer talking.

But it was great to have people to chat with while waiting to start, and even though I watched them all blast off into the distance when the race started, I could tell their supportive karma was floating back to me in their wake.  The race wasn't chip-timed, and was a "ready, set, go" kind of start.  It was 73* at race start, which felt ridiculous compared to the past few weeks, and the course was mostly in the shade.  I looked down at my watch a few times at first to try and settle in around 9:20 (my I-will-PR-goddammit-pace), but it kept showing low 8:xx, so I figured the calibration was off and decided to ignore it.  I didn't see or hear a 1-mile mark, although I heard that there was one, but my music was blasting and I was in my little zone.  There were some tiny little hills which felt like mountains after all the treadmill training I've been doing, but I just picked a girl who was running a little bit faster than me and tried to stay on her tail. I made it past the 2-mile point before I needed to stop and stretch out the IT, and I had to stop and stretch it again around the 2.75 mark.  

I figured a PR was probably not going to happen because I had to stop, but I just kept rewinding my current power song ("Kiss and Tell" by K$sha, don't judge) and kept going.  Now, the only mile-marker I saw was the 2-mile marker, chalked onto the trail, but my watch said that we were at the 2.55 mile point.  I said, "what the FUCK?!" pretty loudly and a bunch of people around me laughed.  Fortunately, it was dead wrong, because it wasn't much further before I saw Brittany running the course back to find me.  She ran with me for a short stretch and told me the finish was just around the corner.  I don't think I've ever had anyone run a course back to find me once they were done, and I can't even say how much I appreciated it.  When I turned the corner, I looked up and saw 27 on the clock and my heart just exploded.  I croaked out, "Holy shit!!" and took off.  Garmin said I was running a 6:31 pace over the last .15.  Ha!  I crossed the line at 27:40 and stopped my watch (3.15 miles), which said 27:35.  Since the race wasn't chip-timed and I know I started at least 5 seconds back, if not more, I'm taking the 27:35 and calling it my new 5K PR!!!
Awesome running friends.

We headed immediately to brunch.

I've said it before, but I'm going to keep saying it: I love the running/blogging/tweeting community that I finally feel a part of here in DC.  I don't know that I've ever had such a supportive group of athletic friends - and a sincere kind of supportive, no matter what the clock says when we all cross that finish line.  I'm thankful to Brittany for putting this one together, and for everyone that showed up, and for everyone that will show up next time, and for all the tweets and texts and comments and emails, and I can't wait until we can pile into a race again.  

And I am thankful - so very thankful, today - for most this amazing day.

Friday, July 30, 2010

random friday facts

1. Sometimes I think my dog is defective.  We have to show him his food most days to get him to eat.  He isn't great at retrieving - if you throw a toy he was playing with, he looks at you like, "Why'd you throw that?" with sad little eyes, and he's a water dog that is scared to swim because he doesn't like his feet not touching the ground.  Sigh.

2. I like tee-shirts that say funny things.  One of my favorites says, "Pants."

3. I'm trying really hard to like greek yogurt, but it's just not going all that well.

4. The weight I've settled at is a solid 30lbs less than I was in January, but still about 10lbs more than I was when I graduated college.  This is okay.  I get to eat ice cream now.  And I made peace with my thighs a long time ago.

5. Last night I was putting away clothes, and I saw one of my winter running hoodies with the thumb-holes and the zippy pockets stuffed in the back of the closet.  Sigh.  

6. I can't ever remember going to a zoo.  I'm sure I have, but my brain has zapped that to make room for the lyrics to Britney Spears songs (WHY?!).

7. I used to be much more snooty about beer than I am now.

8. At least once or twice a week, I hear a weird noise and wake up in the middle of the night and make the poet go see what it is.  It's never anything.

9. I remember when I used to stay up until midnight, 1am, 2am easily.  I think I've been in bed before 10pm almost every night for the past month.  When did I get old?

Have a great weekend, everyone!  I'll be running (cough, not racing) a 5K and making another swing at a 50-mile bike ride this weekend!  What are your plans?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

three disgusting things thursday

1. SUPER-GROSS WARNING!  Skip ahead if you don't like gross things!

My super sweet elbow road rash hasn't been healing that well.  It feels like it is burning most of the time, and I bought different antibiotic cream that had pain killer in it, which didn't help at all.  However, yesterday afternoon when I took the bandage off to clean it, and again at 4am when I couldn't sleep because it was hurting, I discovered that my body has been using the cream to make some excellent greeny-brownish yellow goo.  It doesn't smell (sign of infection), but it's super disgusting.  However, there's a deep gash in one corner that is still leaking blood/goo, and I'm wondering if I should've gotten a stitch or two to hold it together.  It bled pretty constantly for about 24 hours after the fall, and has been a slow leak ever since.  I've been really diligent about washing, air-drying, and re-bandaging this week, but water touching it (in the shower, for example), stings like a motherfucker, even 4 days later.  And I haven't been sleeping well because of it, which is probably the reason I stayed in bed until almost 10am this morning like the lazy slag I am.

Because of this, I decided to bail on my pool running date this morning and tomorrow's planned swim workout.  If water makes me hiss and jump around, chlorine is probably not the best thing for it.

2. All of my lifting clothes (capris) smell like old sweaty crotch, even fresh out of the dryer, even with "workout" soap and Bounce dryer sheets.  Grr.  I hate replacing clothes that aren't worn out.  I think I'm going to just keep wearing them until I notice people giving me a wide berth.

3. (This one isn't gross).  I'll be running the Battle for Ballston 5K this Saturday morning, thanks to a 5K tweetup put together by Brittany!  Hopefully it will be slightly cooler than last weekend's 5K.

Don't forget to enter MAH GIVEAWAH!  

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

giveaway wednesday!

I have a very faint memory of trying Gu several years ago, and immediately spewing it on everything within 15 feet of myself.  Since then, I've been hesitant to try it again, but with my longer bike rides, I've felt the need to mix up my nutrition a bit.  I can only eat so many jelly beans before my stomach tries desperately to punch me in the face (not sure how that would work, hmmm....).

The nice folks over at Gu sent me a mixed box of stuff to try, and I suckered in some Gu-virgins to test it out.  The day the box arrived, I was super excited and wanted to try it out right away.  This was when Julie was visiting, so we decided that we would suck one down and then head to the gym to run.  I know this isn't exactly the intended purpose of Gu, so just hush.  We each tried one - I had a "Chocolate Outrage" and she had "Vanilla Bean."  She really liked the vanilla, and I was surprised to LOVE the chocolate - it tastes like brownie batter (in a good way).
I'm excited.

...and we headed off to the gym.  Before we even got out the door, I had a pretty significant digestive reaction, but that might not be just thanks to the Gu.  Once we got to the gym, I felt fine - but started feeling a bit jittery.  As soon as I got started on the treadmill, the jitters went away, but came back once I got home.  Oops - I gave up caffeine two years ago, and didn't read the small print that said "2x caffeine" before I sucked mine down.  But did I ever fly on that treadmill - 3 miles @ 8:42 pace.  The heart palpitations and speed-talking lasted for about 2 hours afterwards.

Knowing that I didn't test this under the best circumstances, I decided to give it a try on a few long rides.  Now, I'm still figuring out my nutrition on the bike.  I've learned that I don't need anything (although I drink nuun, but that's more due to the heat) on rides shorter than 20 miles/90 minutes.  I've been taking in nutrition about every 15 miles on the bike on my longer rides, and while this may be more often than I need, it's been working out well for me.  On the last two long rides I had, I took a Gu (and the better part of a bottle of water) at about the 30 mile mark.  I usually feel some tummy sloshing for a few minutes while everything settles down, but it seems to be a great source of fuel for me and is working really well.  The other times I take in nutrition, I take in something a bit more solid, to balance it out.  I also don't have crazy heartbeats if I'm on the bike for at least an hour after taking one with caffeine, and then there's no need for the poet to peel me off the ceiling when I get home.  Two thumbs-up for Gu.

I also asked (made) the poet try one before he went on a longer run, and now he wants to take one every time, because he thinks it made him faster.

And the exciting part...giveaway time!
Here's how:
1. Become a follower or tell me that you are - leave a comment.
2. Tweet about this - including @thisamazingday in the tweet and I'll add a comment for you when I see it!
3. Tell me what you use to fuel on long runs or rides and how much/how often - leave a comment.

3 super awesome chances to win!  I'll pick a winner Monday morning!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

because I'm already bruised and bleeding

After a really nice bike ride yesterday morning, I settled down to work for a few hours.  Or, did I?  Wait, did I mention that my work computer won't turn on and they can't fix it for a week and I couldn't get into my backup until it ran a disk repair that took over 24 hours and finished up just MOMENTS ago because my computer died while it was running a backup and borked the universe?  Right.  Grr.


Around lunchtime, I headed over to Spokes, because they are always nice there and don't make fun of me for not knowing where the brakes are and there's a really cute dog that walks around.  I dropped my bike in for a tune-up with the repair dudes - they are definitely dudes, not guys or men or boys - because my front brakes making an awesome noise after Sunday's crash - turned out there was a big piece of metal sticking out the brake pad and touching the wheel.  While that was going on, I walked over to learn about pedals.  I figured that since I'm already covered and bruises and scrapes and one still-oozing piece of sweet road rash, now would be a great time to become attached to my bike in a more permanent way.  Now, nearly every single person that I've talked to about pedals has shouted, "Speedplay" or "Speedplay Zeros" almost before I am done asking the question.  So that's what I ended up getting.  
My shoe!
I'm sad because my cages are gone and death is many many many steps closer.
But check out the cute dog!

I thought I was going to have to leave my bike there overnight to put it all together, but the super-nice guy who sold me the bike, showed me where the brakes are, fit me the day I bought my bike, sold me a bike computer, and thinks I'm only a little bit crazy said he would do it right then, and then let me sit on the trainer and practice until I was convinced I wouldn't die or the store closed, whichever came first.  

My super-nice bike guy.
I'm fierce now.

At first the pedals were REALLY REALLY stiff and I had to almost break my foot in half to get unclipped, but the longer I sat there, the easier it got.  Says the girl on the trainer.  I think I'll head out today - there's a big baseball field about 1/4 mile from my house, and that seems like a good place to practice as grass is marginally softer and less abusive than concrete.  If you see me out there, do me a favor and scrape up any skin you see laying around - I'm running a bit low right now.  I also think it would be incredibly wise to skip Conte's hill workout tonight, because the first day of being clipped in is probably not the day to try and ride vertically up the side of a building.
Graham says, this is all just too much excitement for me.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, July 26, 2010

the 50-miler that wasn't & the 20-miler that was

I went to bed Saturday night full of beer and cookies.  Not the best recipe for a long ride the next morning....

Sunday morning I got up late, headed out late, but had lots of little plastic packets of squishy sugar and some tunes playing from my bento box and felt ready to go!  I headed up the MV trail, turned around at the detour mess, and immediately - THWACK! - felt something hit my helmet.  What's that!?  Angry noise from the creature trapped!  I immediately freaked, skidded to a stop, and started ripping everything off my head - my sunglasses exploded (dratted removable lenses), my helmet went flying, hairties fell out, and a little bumblebee buzzed angrily on his way.  Thanks to the runner who stopped to watch the show and laugh so hard you were snorting - glad I could make your morning.

I continued south, and a few miles later got hit pretty hard by a large fuzzy bee in the clavicle.  About 10 seconds later, another one to the tricep - what is going ON with the bees today?!  After another mile or so, I took yet another one to the face - cheekbones of steel, baby!  I stopped at the water fountain (mile 15ish) to refill and refuel.  While I was sitting there, a Little Person (LP) jogged by.  Awesome.  The bottom 5 miles of the MV trail are decently hilly, but went much smoother than last weekend - or maybe I've put the Conte's hill workout fear into my quads.  Either way, I turned around to cruise back up the MV, and....wipeout.  I took a hard right turn into a sneaky little pile of gravel and went right over.  My right hip is sore and I've got a sweet scrape, and my front brakes are making a neato noise, but otherwise no real injuries.  I was dumb enough to dump my water bottle over the scrape to clean out the gravel - forgetting that there was nuun inside.  Salt + open wound = curse words I didn't even know I knew.  I stopped at the water fountain (mile 25ish) to refill my water bottles & fuel, and bumped into two cyclists who noticed my wicked road rash, and immediately started showing me all their wipeout scars.  Cyclists are weird.
The boys called this AWESOME.

The poet met up with me at the 4 mile run/MV intersection (mile 35ish).  While I was waiting, a guy jogged by, stopped, sat down, and lit a cigarette.  Gross!  The air quality was awful - he probably could've just breathed a little more deeply and gotten the same effects.  Our plan was to do a DC loop to hit the 50-mile mark, but by then it was 11:30 and just  My bike computer said it was 105*, and despite all the fuel, I was starting to feel pretty zonked by the sun, so we headed home.  A mile from home?  Bee directly to the eyeball - I have no idea how it got around my sunglasses, but it must've been pretty determined.  The universe was flipping me off...and I gave a big double-middle-one right back.  

When I got home, I decided I'd wait until dusk head back out to finish up 50 - ha!  Show of hands for people who thought THAT was going to happen?  Instead, I stuffed myself full of salt and carbs, took an amazing shower, and snuggled in for a nice nap.

This morning I woke up to temperatures a solid 20* cooler than yesterday morning, and headed up to DC for another ride with Heather.  She was rocking her clipless pedals (side note: why are they called clipLESS?  shouldn't they be clipFUL?) for her first real ride, and she kicked butt!  We did some laps of Haines Point - it was great to be on smooth road instead of bumpy trail, although my legs were definitely a bit grumpy after the rollers yesterday.  Mr. Jefferson was happy about the gorgeous weather...

I love riding in DC in the morning - the first few miles on the MV are always tough, but it's totally worth it to ride over that bridge and see the sun on the water.

In store for the week: I fulfill my obvious death wish by becoming permanently attached to my bike & another giveaway!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

crystal city twilighter 5K: race report

I'll try to only say this once: Holy Mother of 8 pound 6 ounce baby Jesus, was it freakin' hot out.

I spent most of the afternoon reading in bed, drinking gallons of water and try to store up air conditioning in my blood.  We headed up to the race around 7:15, and stayed in our parked, A/C-running car until about 7:40.  I had frozen water in my handheld and steel in my veins.
 I am not pretending this is a good idea.
I bumped into MCM Mama just before the air horn went off!
She looked ready to rumble.

All I wanted to do was survive, so my goal was to not burn out in the first mile.  I looked down a few times and saw 8:xx on my Garmin, and reeled it in.  First mile went by pretty evenly: 9:29.  I walked through the water station, and dumped two cups of water on my head.  FAIL: this made my left earbud stop working.  Awesome.  I started to feel warmer right before the second mile mark, and my IT band started pulling a bit.  Hit the second mile at 19:21, and immediately stopped and stretched my IT band.  I wasn't worried about the time I was losing, but I was worried about how tight it was.  I stretched for probably 30-45 seconds, then kept going.  Hit a water station, dumped two cups on my head.  My "frozen" handheld was hot at this point, but I was dumping that on myself too.  I had to stop and stretch my IT band twice more, for 15-30 seconds, during this mile.  I hit the third mile at 30:23 (stupid IT band) and slogged in, for a finish of 31:16.  Yes, a 4-year-old beat me and my IT band.  Ugh.  It wasn't until I stopped and walked that I noticed how incredibly over-heated I was.  
Check out the color of my face, compared with my arm.  
Also, this guy is tickling my IT band.  Tease.

 Awesome race partner.

We headed back to the car and changed (yup, stripped in the parking garage), and went back for our free beers.  Lucky me, the poet doesn't drink beer, so I had two free ones on an empty stomach.  I'm so smart.
 ....which means that by the time we got to the bar, I was feeling pretty happy.

We met up with Heather, who was celebrating her 24th birthday with her 24th race!

 And the fabulous Liz, who came to spectate and drink beer and cheer on the slow people (moi).

The service at the bar was less-than-prompt, so by the time we left, I had the equivalent of another two beers and some pretzel nibbles in my tummy.  I realized by the time we got home how much of a bad idea this was, so I sent three pieces of cookie cake in there to soak up the beers.  Cookie cake, you are my hero.

Lesson of this race: my IT band isn't ready for racing, especially in this heat.  By the last quarter-mile, it was sending big noisy fireworks that spelled out, "I'M DONE HERE."  My knee didn't start hurting, though, so I still think I'm on the recovery road.  Just not there yet.

Friday, July 23, 2010

random friday facts

1. Some days I wish I was the kind of person that had one of those houses that looks like a museum, that is cool and quiet except for ticking clocks, and has furniture people are afraid to put their feet on.  My house looks like a triathlon barfed all over it, and then a few dogs came in and shook hair everywhere.  All my furniture was gifted or donated except one piece, and there are curtains hanging up on exactly one window.  And I love it.

2. I don't know of anything that has ever brought me as much peace as watching a puppy sleep.

3. I don't like fish because of the texture.  Weird slippery strangeness.

4. I hate it when people are late.

5. Work is getting more and more busy, and I'm so happy in my job.

6. The hardest meat to remove from my diet is chicken.  I never noticed how much I ate it everywhere until I started looking more carefully at the meat I eat.  And to be honest, I'm not sure if I'll let it go.  But I like how aware I am.  And it's amazing to me how many foods I used to crave no longer interest me.  Mostly greasy foods.

7. I've never had a hairstyle I'm really happy with, so my hair spends most days in a ponytail.

8. I love the smell of cigars.

9. No matter how much I read about protein, I still have no idea how to get more with eating fish or living solely on spinach and almonds.  Tofu, yes, got it, but what else?  I know lots of foods that have a little bit (CHEESE), but I need the protein bomb, so I can eat it every day and then go back to my ice cream in peace.

Speaking of tofu, last night I mixed pre-cubed tofu (new favorite thing) with one of my favorite easy comforting dinner meals: pesto noodles!  I sauteed the tofu in all the Italian-related spices I had in my cabinet.

Then I followed my usual recipe: cook bowtie noodles (whole-wheat), dump in a bowl with a tablespoon of pesto, a few hearty shakes of parmesan, and stir.  The tofu was a crunchy Italian-flavored addition that I will definitely use again!

10. Under the label of things just happen to me: last night, we decided on a whim to walk to Del Ray to get ice cream.  There's a place in Del Ray that makes doggie ice cream treats - The Dairy Godmother - and also some pretty delicious human ice cream.  As we're sitting outside, enjoying our treats, a cameraman and an extra smiley man came up and asked us about what Graham was eating.  Suddenly he's asking me questions and taping.  I don't like being on TV, I feel like the toothless momma standing on her front steps talking about how big the twister was.  But here you go anyhow.
This might be the final lesson: SHOWER MORE OFTEN.

That's all for today.  I'm hoping to see quite a few of you tomorrow night - run back and get me, eh?  I'll be the sweaty one with the jiggling stomach that's trying not to vomit.  Have a great weekend, everyone!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

three things thursday!

1. Bondi bands!  Someone very nice at Bondi Band sent me two to try out - one is a shinier fabric, one is more stretchy.  I've tried them both, and they both kick butt at my #1 pet peeve - hair flying in my mouth while I'm running/cycling/etc.  I've been wearing one under my helmet while cycling to try and prevent swamp-helmet-head, and I totally heart it.

This is a pic of the one I've been wearing most often:
So cute!  Shiny peace signs!

Sadly, I don't have one to give away (unless someone wants one that's been stretched out by my fat head and sweated in), but Bondi Band gave me something even better: a coupon code just for you guys!

Buy 3, Get 1 FREE: use coupon code ONE.
Buy 5 for $25: use coupon code FIVE.

We just won't talk about how many of these I need to own.  

2. My big news: I'm going to run the Crystal City Twilighter 5K on Saturday night.  My first post-ITBS actual running race!!  I'm more excited than I probably should be for a 5K.  I am setting a pretty easy goal for myself: finish.  I think I have it in my legs to smash the potatoes out of my PR, but it's definitely not happening this weekend, as much as I want to chase it down.  And my IT band has been a tiny bit grumpy as I've been adjusting to the outside, so I may even end up doing a little walk/running, depending on how it feels.  If anyone wants to run with me/pace me/come back to laugh at me as I get dusted by the guy with the triple-stroller, let me know - I'll definitely need an post-race ice cold beer, if nothing else!

3. Conte's hill workout.  HOLY EVERLIVING MOTHER OF CRAP.  Now I know.  

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

mostly wordless wednesday: scootling the booter

In my house, we do something to the puppy called "scootling the booter."  I have no idea why I started calling it this, but basically, the puppy runs up to you, you scratch both side of his back legs (near his booter), and in his absolute joy, he will burrow into your crotch until he is completely upside-down and drooling and sneezing with delight.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

it doesn't make me a failure

Today would have been my second wedding anniversary.

I think the only way I want to recognize it is with a quiet moment, realizing that we are both much happier in our individual lives than we were sharing them.  We've gotten to the other side.  I could always see the other side when I was in the middle of it, but I could never see how to get through.  Turns out it's the same way you get through anything tough - if giving up is not an option, than fighting through - saving yourself - is all you have.

If I could send a message to this girl, it would be:  you'll get through this.  I know you think that you are trapped, and that there is no way out, but you will find your way.  Lean on your friends and they will help carry you through.  One day, your life will be full of peace and love and for this you will know to be thankful.

Monday, July 19, 2010

giveaway winner and I get back in the pool

OKAY!  No one has been anxiously awaiting the giveaway winner more than me!  Mostly because I never get to be on the very exciting side of going to and hitting the button.  WHOMP!  PHENOMENAL COSMIC POWERS!    

I totally asked everyone why they were awesome on a whim, but this was SUCH a great round of comments!  I love hearing why everyone is awesome.  I think you guys are all pretty awesome because you read my blog, which can be summed up as "whine whine whine IT band bitch moan bike grumble grumble bike stretch food food food."  You guys, major props.

Some of my favorite comments:

LPT: "...I'm currently awesome because I have a bruised jaw, a swollen face, a side braid, and I'm wearing shorts (that are possibly too short) to work today.  It's like the 1980's punched me in the head."

Dash: "... I am awesome, because like you, I cuss like I just stepped off an 18-wheeler."  How did you know?

Liz: "Who do I have to sleep with to get free running gear?"  Um, not me?  

tswimmwer: "...AND I survived a divorce this year."  Fist pump.  This makes you an amazing woman.

Heather: "...wake up at 5am..." was as far as I needed to read.  You morning people put me to shame.

KateKirk: "...and don't seriously lose my shit and just give up and watch Food Network and eat Dove bars on the couch."  Sometimes, this is my life.  Can you see me?  Are there cameras?

There are a TON more of great comments but switching back and forth between the tabs is giving me carpel tunnel, so just go read them.  Seriously.  

The winners are.....46 and 11, Leslie and Liz (lizardruns)!

Send me an email with your mailing address and I'll get them out this week.  We can be twinsies!

Please don't despair if you didn't win (I ALWAYS despair when I don't win) because I've got at least 3 more giveaways lined up over the next month that you can bomb out on.  AT LEAST.  

Now back to the good FASCINATING life!

I slept 12 (TWELVE!!) hours on Saturday night, and still desperately wanted a nap on Sunday.  Dear My Body This Was A Light Week So Quit Bitching.  Instead, I dragged myself to the pool, where I spent 5 minutes sitting on the edge telling myself I could go home if I wanted to.  Then I got in.  Stretched.  Whined (in my head).  Did 50 yards.  Whined some more.  And repeat until I hit 400 yards and suddenly didn't want to drown just so I could get out of the pool.  I ended up doing 2500 slow yards in 70 minutes (this includes all the whine and stretch time) and felt much better once I was done.  I didn't lift because the only thing that goes with swimming is legs, and I had a glorious reunion on Sunday afternoon with my Awesome Massage Lady!!!  I haven't seen her since May while I've been finishing my other massage membership, and girl, ain't nobody beat on my sweet ass like you do.  She agreed that my psoas is cranky but also discovered/pointed out that there are tons of tiny little muscles around my hips that are tight as crap and likely causing trouble.  Huh.  So I'm stretching and drinking lots of water and hoping that these hips calm down.  I don't think there's a hip-removal surgery available just yet.

This morning I got up super-early to try and run OUTSIDE.  I know.  Despite all my bitching, I actually really love summer running, because I'm a fan of sweating my brains out and puking.  I, however, am not a fan of trying to adjust to summer weather in mid-July.  Ughhhhh.  It took every ounce of mental ooge to get through this run.  I'm such a freakin' pansy.  SHUT IT.

Total: 2.01 miles/18:21/avg. pace 9:08

I headed off to the gym, where I lifted for 45 minutes, and then hopped on the treadmill for redemption.

Total: 1.05 miles/8:30/avg. pace 8:05

THAT'S RIGHT.  I walked 2 minutes on either side of this.  When I staggered off the treadmill, I happened to run into a former manager of mine - one that I liked quite a bit - and we chatted for a spell.  It wasn't that awkward that I was in a drenched sports bra and booty shorts that were riding up into my crotch and smelled like a ripe armpit.  As we chatted, he said, "You left Apple, right?" and I said, "Yup" and told him about my new job, but what I wanted to say was, "LIKE A BULLET FROM A GUN, BABEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!"

It's the little things.

On tap this week: letting someone else kick my ass through a cycling hill workout, more product review happiness, at least one more run outside (ugh. I KNOW), and I've got a surprise at the end of the week!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

40 miles + 4-inch high heels = ugh

First of all, I'll tip you off.  All of you Fast People with your "my legs were so tired I only did 12 miles in 65 minutes" and your "GIRL I KNOW I'm so sad about my 16:00 5K time" can just skip this first part and jump down to the pictures.  Puppies!  Cute!  Sparkly things!  Just skip on down.

On Friday, I decided it would be a good idea to do a tiny bit of speedwork.  I have no idea why.  I'm not really back up to a weekly mileage where I can put in speedwork, but if I have to do one more walking-on-IT-band-eggshells-2-mile run, I'm going to stab myself in the kidneys.  So, speedwork it is!

I haven't done any speedwork in about 6 weeks, and my running - and my approach - has changed a lot.  Hmm.  But rather than consult a pace chart, I figured I'd just wing it.  That's me, little miss planning.  Quarters sounded good (they always do - in my head, I'm going, "How much can it ACTUALLY hurt to run really fast for less than 2 minutes?"  Oy.)  Since my 2-3 miles runs have been averaging 8:40-9:00ish pace, I figured I'd start at 8:00 pace and work my way downwards.  I also figured I'd just go by the treadmill mph and figure out the pace when I got home.  

1: 1:50 (7:20 avg pace)  Oops.  So much for my mph to pace conversion.
2: 1:49 (7:16 avg pace)  Why is the treadmill shaking so much?  Oh, because it's still at a 3% incline from the warm-up.  FAIL KATIE FAIL.
3. 1:47 (7:08 avg pace)  These aren't hard at all!  Why do people complain so much about speedwork?
4. 1:48 (7:12 avg pace)  Wait, time to run again already?
5. 1:48 (7:12 avg pace)  THIS. (breathe) WAS. (breathe) A. (WHEEZE) BAD. (WHEEEZE) IDEA.
6. 1:46 (7:04 avg pace)  Death would be a sweet relief.

I followed it up with a 5 minute jog @ 9:20 pace.  Boy oh boy, does that feel slow after hauling my ass through 7-something miles!  

Now, I haven't done speedwork outside in quite some time, and yes, I HAVE heard that it's 105 degrees outside and no, I'm NOT interested it trying it now and yes, I DO know that makes me the biggest wimp on the planet.  I am interested to find out how fast I'd be if the treadmill wasn't dragging my ass through these.  Does anyone know about treadmill-to-outside conversion?  Also, a pace chart indicates that I could run a 24-something 5K and a 4-hour marathon.  BWAHAhAHAHAhahAhahaa!  That's hilarious.  You can find jokes all over the internet, kids!  I think next time I do speedwork I won't just do 400's, I'll mix it up a bit more and see what the numbers tell me.  As much as it pains me to say this, these weren't puke-threshold hard, and if my IT hadn't stuck its little head out of the ground to see WTF was going on, I might have done a few more.  

Last note: my total, including the 6-10ish minutes of walking/slow jogging I did before/during/after these, was 28:53 for 3.05 miles.  That wouldn't be a 5K PR for me, but it's only about 2 minutes away from one.  Just saying.

Saturday morning I got up super-extra-early to get in a long ride before the trail melted from the heat.  No sooner had I climbed out of bed than....
I keep your pillow warm, says G.

We did: 15 miles of fast n' flat, then 10 miles of hills that were too tough to even curse until I stopped, then 15 more miles of fast n' flat.  It wasn't the 50 miles I'd hoped for, but the hill miles made it a very worthwhile training ride.  I generally like hills because Thunder Thighs can eat everyone on the climbs, but these were tough.  Also, I need to gain my 30lbs back because I float gently on the downhills, when I want to fly.  Maybe a brick in my seat bag?  Maybe.

We did stop at Mt. Vernon to take a breather (that last climb sucks) and take some pics.  
Joe is a hill super-star.  Especially on the downhills.
 The look on my face here says: 

40 miles/2:37/avg. pace 15.3mph

After the ride, I took a 2-second shower and then headed up to Stroga for a class that was donating proceeds to Calvary.  For some reason, I thought this was going to be a hot vinyasa class (probably wishful thinking), so I drank 2 bottles of water (to add to the 6 I drank on the bike) on the way, and dressed in almost nothing.  Um, no.  When we walked in, I was the only nearly-naked person in a room full of people in soft yoga clothes.  And I didn't sweat any of the water out, so I had to pee so badly that the ab work almost created a new embarrassing moment.  But it was a terrific class, and I'd definitely go back.  

We had brunch afterwards with Liz (yum!  food made not entirely of sugar that didn't come from little plastic packets!) and then got cleaned up and headed to a friend's wedding.  It was a really nice ceremony and day, and they seem really happy together.  I didn't get a pic of the bride & groom, but we snapped a quick one (bad flash!).

We bailed out early because I was falling asleep in my wine, and I somehow managed to sleep from 8:30pm - 8:30am.  WHOMP.  Not sure what's on tap for today, but it will probably include a dog park trip, test run #853, and maybe some lazy sunshine time.  What have you been up to this weekend?  

Don't forget to enter my giveaway today!