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Aside

Sometimes You Listen

In my March Recap, I likened March to a truck that had run me over.  Well, April is a freight train barreling through.   I have been trying to stay upbeat, particularly when I post but I am not sure if it worked.  :)

Work has been crazy busy since the beginning of March and it’s likely to stay that way through late August.   I did not think it would affect me as much as it has.   But I am tired, so very, very tired.  But again, I tried not to say much because, 1- who wants to read a Debby Downer all the time, and 2- my boss reads this blog.  (Hi awesome boss!)  I think with work being crazy and then trying to stay trained for 3 half marathons (plus 5k’s) in 3 months may have been a little more than this Slacker was ready for.   I still love my job, I’m just a little worn out and somehow when I was planning my race schedule, I wasn’t paying a lot of attention.  My next few weeks look like this-

This weekend- work/ long run*
April 19- Firehouse 5K -may be a 5K but there’s a 500 ft elevation in    less than 1/2 a mile
April 25-27- SLO Marathon weekend- half
May 3- Run or Dye
May 10- work

My last post mentioned an irksome migraine, and it hasn’t really left.  This is not horribly unusual; I average a lingering one around once a year. :(     Between that and being overly tired, I got a little emotional driving home on Friday.   There may have been some loud, off-key singing involved as well.  :)  Maybe a little Let It Go.

Saturday was a work day and I was trying to psych myself up for the 10 mile run that I needed to do.     Meanwhile, both of my co-workers were lecturing me that I needed to take of myself.  After work, I headed home for the usual lunch and errands.  It was while I was in Target with my mother that I had to face facts.   I jokingly mentioned that a nap sounded like a great idea.  She looked at me, paused and then said that it was a good idea.   Ummm, what?

Pinterest

Pinterest

My mother is not the type to suggest that.   Growing up, one of the things we argued about most was my inherent laziness.    If there are hours in the day then there are hours you could and should be doing something.   The name of my blog came from her; one day I said I didn’t feel like running, she called me a slacker.  So for her to say I needed a nap meant I must look like a train wreck.  Ha!

Even then I still thought about trying to get in my run.  I was telling myself I could start with 5 miles and see how it went.  Finally common sense prevailed and my planned *2 hours of running turned into 2 hours of napping.

slo

This will be the finish line in 2 weeks

I was still feeling a little rough today, so I took it easy again.  That’s not to say it wasn’t a good day.  I headed down to SLO for some more hardwood shopping with my mom, seriously, how long does it take to make a choice?  The choice was finally made, so now I just get to look forward to helping her rip out the carpeting in the near future.  My brother gets to install the hardwood.  :)   So that’s coming up in a few weeks too.

I ate some yummy food, didn’t buy too much and finally managed to get this shot-freemontThis is the local landmark that inspired this years medals for the SLO Marathon and 1/2.    I can’t wait to earn this crossing the finish line.  :)

Tomorrow, depending on how I feel, I will get back to running.   If I am still tired, I may rest another day.   I would rather feel rested and slightly under trained for the half than exhausted and sore.    Work is likely to be just as busy in the coming weeks, we will down a person, so I am thinking of dropping my training back to 3 days a week.  I need to think on it a little more though.

How was your weekend?

 

Slacker Reboot -Training to SLO (and beyond)

Back in February, I had a few issues with my legs not feeling so good. I figured it was caused by overuse as the training plan that I had been following was a little overeager. The mileage that it was calling for was a little intimidating. 40 mile weeks are great for some people and in theory I like them, but come on, Slacker over here. Weeks 2-5 hitting 40 was yowza! I never actually hit that mileage but I was running more than I was used too. After the ugliness that was the Heart & Soles 10K, I took a week off resting my ankle, Achilles and basically my left leg and started fresh with a new plan. A Slacker Plan. I tried using it leading up to my half in March and I am planning on continuing with it through SLO and for the beach half I want to run in May (doh!).

I thought about what worked for me before 3 days a week and then I considered the fact that I want to run more races this year and continue to improve my times ( sub 2 please?!). Plus there was my goal of hitting 750 miles this year. So I decided on 4 days a week and decided to call it 4-5-6-SLR.slackerplanAnd either 1 long run (L), or a track workout (S) or a race (R) on the weekend. Why does it need a name? Because I like names. Why so many letters? When I figured out the SLR almost looked like Slacker, I tried really hard to come up with a word for C or K, but no luck yet. :( Maybe someday I can graduate to 5-7-9 :)    Kind of random, but does anyone else remember that store?

There are no set days and I can switch of the mileage and work out when I want. Plus, with 3 different towns and a treadmill to choose from, I have a lot of flexibility. And I don’t get frustrated when I miss a Track Tuesday or hill interval Wednesday because I can do them on whatever day I feel like it. Now I don’t feel guilty for never running on Fridays. :) I would like to get to the point where a weekend long run is at least 10 miles; every week. I’m not there but I’m working on it.

Double rainbow!

Wednesday morning’s commute! Double rainbow!

So with that being said, after Monday’s crazy rain and a Tuesday rest, I headed out Wednesday for a quick 4 miles. I wasn’t feeling the run for some reason so I wanted it done quickly. I was aiming for as close to 5k race pace as possible. I had missed my Wave Rider’s so I ran in them that night. Maybe it’s all in my head, but I am faster in those shoes. My first mile included a little warm up and then I was off. Miles 1-3 felt good, I hardly felt like I was pushing. When my Garmin chimed at mile 3, I saw a chance to push. If I pushed- hard- I could pull off 4 miles in what was my very first official 5K time- 35:44. So I pushed. 4 Miles- 35:35-holy crap. This left me on the backside of the lake so it gave me plenty of time to walk it out and breath after. I was super stoked.

photo 3Thursday called for 5 easy miles. The first 2 miles were pretty good, but by starting my 3rd lap, I knew I wasn’t completing 5. My ears were freezing. I can’t stand cold ears, they hurt, so I figured one more lap would bring me to 3.5 miles and I would be done for the night. Which I was ok with because there were a few border collies out for an evening walk. They looked well-behaved, but then I never expected to be attacked by one in the first place a few years ago. I admit I never took my eyes off of them when I ran past and my hand may have strayed to my pepper spray. I had a 1/4 mile left to complete when I got to add a new animal to my animal encounter list-

Run for your life!!!

Run for your life!!!

Yep, these guys are actually pretty scary when they charge you and then try to follow you. Great for a strong burst of speed at the end but freaky. Then I realized they were between me and my car. Boo.

My weekend looks pretty clear. No complaints, I would love to sleep in. I need to get in a long run and an easy run at some point but other than that, nothing. I can’t even begin to say how much I am looking forward to that. :)
Anyone else have an aggressive goose (or any animal) encounter?
How was your week? Anyone racing this weekend?

 

March Recap

I kind of feel like March was a runaway train.  It knocked me around some and then sped off.  Between 2 crazy weeks at work and then trying to give myself a concussion, I am ready to say hello April!    While the month may have been insane, I did manage a few things.

RacesWine Country 13.1  – 2:07:08  Course PR

Training- Unofficial 5K PR- 26:35

I also joined the Around the World Running Blog Relay for March and April with a goal of 200 KM (which also means I have to do the conversion each week when I send in my numbers. :) )

So-marchrecap

74 Miles, sweet!  I’ll take it.  Taking 5 days off last week put a dent it what could have been my highest mileage month ever.   I had also planned on running yesterday but a crazy rain storm came in and I just could not bring myself to go to the gym instead.  Daylight savings time has really spoiled me.  :)  Instead I drove straight home.  Which was probably better because between the pouring rain and water coming off the tires; visibility was crap.     I was just thankful to get home.

While Saturday’s run was rough, I got in another 4 miles on Sunday.   While I may brought the pace down by the end on Saturday, my legs never felt right.  Sunday’s average pace was similar to Saturday but it felt so much smoother.   My legs remembered how to work :)   Woo hoo!   I had a little trouble with my Garmin, though.  I thought I hit start but half a mile later I was wondering why I hadn’t felt the slow pace alert buzz.  I always walk the middle part of the first mile on my neighborhood route.  (Hill denial)  I looked down and it had never started, boo!

Why do we take pictures like these?

Why do we take pictures like these?

I thought about starting it then but saw an opportunity.  Earlier in the month I had signed up for the virtual kickoff run for the Rock n Roll Las Vegas Marathon.   I have been wanting to run this race for years and any chance to win a race entry, I was taking it!  I needed to run a 5K and submit photo proof as part of the deal, and it had to be in by April 2.   The incident with my head had pushed my original planned run back.  Since I had my Nike+ app tracking the whole run and I was planning on doing 4 miles, I didn’t start my Garmin until around the .9 mile mark.  From there my only goal was to get that 3.1 in under 30, which I knew may be tough because I figured I would need a walk break or 2.    It was tough but mission accomplished!   3.1 miles on the Garmin and overall 4 miles in 39:20 on my Nike+ app.  Then I took a photo and a less than great selfie so I could submit my time.

Man, I have no talent at these :)

Man, I have no talent at these :)

My bruise has faded and the welt is gone, and so is the tightness in my head, woo hoo!   I have worked out a little training plan for the next 26 days leading up the SLO Marathon and 1/2.   I have 2 race options for the weekend before as well.  I am deciding between a 10k on the beach and pretty tough 5k that kicked my ass last year.  Decisions, decisions.   I have a week or so to decide.

Also, race pictures are finally up and one doesn’t suck!  In the other I look like an 80′s reject, but this one isn’t bad-

I've seen worse

I’ve seen worse

Who wants to race SLO with me?  I have a discount code that’s good until registration closes on April 11.  Odds are good for great weather and a beautiful course!!

Any good April fool’s pranks?  Either done by you or to you?  My coworkers tried this one on me today-prank

Apparently April is race month!  Who else is racing and what are you racing?

Hope you’re all having a good week so far!

 

2014 Wine Country Half -Recap

Previously mentioned jitters aside, I knew going in that I was not feeling this race for some reason.   I was tired, I’ve had a crazy few weeks and I just wasn’t looking forward to that last hill.   I knew under 2 was a shot in the dark and was iffy about beating my previous PR of 2:05:57.   I managed to get to sleep at a decent hour last night but I hated my alarm this morning.  :)    I had everything laid out last night so getting ready was pretty easy.    A plus about this race is that it had an 8AM start but I didn’t have to leave my house until after 7:20.  And that was just so I could deal with parking.   I hung out in my car until about 5 minutes to start time.    Which was good because it was cold.

I look tired and I haven't even started running yet

I look tired and I haven’t even started running yet

I checked the weather yesterday and this morning and it said high 40′s to start, high 50′s at the end.  I thought about not wearing my arm sleeves, but I put them on anyways.   Which turned out to be a wise choice because the weather man lied!!!  It never made it to the 50′s and the sun never came out.   I never took my arm sleeves off; usually they feel too hot by mile 3.   My legs were cold to the touch the entire race.   When did I get so wimpy?  People are running in snow and ice and I have issues with the 40′s?  Sad, sad.

Took these the other day when it was sunny

Took these the other day when it was sunny

Miles 1-3 felt pretty good, I tried to keep my pace around 9:00.  I hit the first bigger hill around mile 2.5, it led with a down hill,  so I picked up the pace down it.   Mile 4 brought a slow down, I got stuck behind another runner and couldn’t pass due the line of cars driving by!  There must have been 6 or 7.  It was slower but I was still feeling pretty good.     Miles 5, 6, and 7 were another story.

Partway into mile 5, I noticed a tightness in my lungs.  Seriously again?  I was a little wheezy at City to Sea in October and then February’s Super Fun Run 5K was so cold, I had troubles breathing.    I don’t think I have used an inhaler since high school, I don’t even have one anymore. I hadn’t felt like I was pushing it and I felt like my breathing was under control but I slowed down anyways.    By mile 8 I was feeling a little better.  There was little out and back here that I swear felt longer than last year. winegarmin

In mile 9, my Garmin went wonky.  Every mile leading up to 9 I would pass the race mile marker and then my Garmin would beep about 1/10th of a mile later.  Mile 9 beeped but I never saw the mile marker.   They were on wine barrels so I didn’t think I had missed one.  Quarter of a mile later, I found it.    WTH- my pace was making sense for how I was feeling but nothing was lining up.    I was getting tired and my arms were chafing and it was making me fussy.   I wanted to take a walk break (or 2) but I had a feeling I was walking the hill at the end so I just kept running.    There was a man running with his dog, a big dog, so I used that to distract me.  The dog looked like he was out for a morning stroll, he was just trotting along in front of his owner, not even running.

coming up to the finish line

coming up to the finish line

Mile 12 and I hit the dreaded hill.  I managed to run 1/3 of the way up before saying F* it and walking.   Once at the top, I still needed to walk.  After about a minute of that i told myself I was almost done and to get a move on.   Mile 13 was the slowest over all at 10:44.    The finish line was in sight.  As I got closer, I could see my mom and Zoey at the finish line.   When I ran passed them, I gave her a thumbs down sign to show how I felt.   I crossed the line and received my medal, I then headed over to pick up my wine glass. Finishing time- 2:07:08.  Not a PR or sub-2 but it was a 7 minute course best.

IMG_3486Want to know what happens when you finish a race that you are half happy about, partially disappointed and just tired?  You hug random strangers at the finish line.  And I am not a hugger.   She wasn’t a complete stranger but now I feel like a total creeper.    She was a newer work colleague from another location who I have had a few meetings with in the past few weeks.    How’s that for a welcome to the team- here let me share my sweat with you.  Like I said- creeper status.IMG_3507

While a part of me wishes I had done better, but the course was nothing to be sad about.  I finished it and barring a few issues, I felt strong for at least 1/2 of it.   :)  I beat last years time of 2:14 and according to my Garmin, the overall elevation gain for the race was 1,617 feet.  How accurate are these things?    I celebrated with a tri-tip sandwich, and another trip to the theater to see Divergent again.  This time included movie popcorn, yum!  Oh and the sun finally came out-

relax and recovery

relax and recovery

Now it’s off to bed for me and I get to sleep in tomorrow!!!  I am taking a vacation day, which will hopefully be restful.. Except I have tons of laundry to do and I should work on a paper that is due soon.   And apparently I need to make an appointment to get another inhaler.

How was everyone’s weekend?

Who else raced this weekend?

Pre Race Jitters

Where did this week go?  Seriously wasn’t it just Tuesday?   Now it is Saturday evening, and I feel unprepared for tomorrow‘s race.   I’ve picked up my bib, edited my playlist, and laid out my clothes.   Since I decided that a PR is unlikely with that last hill, what do I have to be nervous about?

Taper week has been completed, probably a little too well.  After Monday’s 10K, I headed back to the lake path on Tuesday,    I ran a good 4.5 miles.  Probably a little faster than I should have but they felt like good miles.   After that the week seemed to pick up speed.

I had a meeting Wednesday morning but when that was completed I was done for the day, woo hoo!!   Since I had to drive through SLO on the way home, I stopped by the Running Warehouse to exchange the handheld I had picked up on Saturday.    That thing drove me batty; taking the sleeve off was a pain and I decided to just exchange it.    Hopefully the Ultimate Direction handheld I chose will be better.   I then headed home to change and go drive tomorrow’s race course.  After getting home and changing, I checked Twitter and was ticked.    Apparently Jordan Hasay stopped by the Running Warehouse like an hour after I left!!!  Ugh!!!!  So in the past 2 weeks, Benedict Cumberbatch comes to SLO and I miss it, Jordan Hasay shows up and I miss that too :(    Oh and Lady Gaga was nearby a few weeks ago too.   :(

Thursday I had a business mixer after work, but the night ended fun!  I met some friends for an early showing of Divergent!!!  It was really good, they did a pretty good job converting it to a movie.     I treated myself to In n Out before the movie, carb loading right?  It was so yummy but apparently I was still hungry because 20 minutes into the movie my stomach growled.  And it was loud.   So awkward.

Danger!!!!

Danger!!!!

Friday I had briefly thought about getting in a 2 mile run after work but decided against it.  Which turned out to be a good thing because I ended up working longer.  The carb loading rationale struck again when I ate a bag of chips.  :(  Today I woke feeling a little under the weather, I have felt like that for a few days now but I am in denial.  I keep telling myself that it is just nerves.  I worked this morning so I didn’t get to packet pick up until later.    It was quick and easy.    They are using a new timing system this year so I won’t have to worry about them cutting the chip off as soon as I cross the finish line.  :)  The shirt is cool too.  This is the first time I have received a long sleeve tech tee.  And I love gray.

winecountryshirtI indulged with a little nap today too.  :)  Then I went through the swag bag to see what was there-

wineswagNow I am in my comfy chair relaxing.  Well trying too, I am still antsy for some reason…   I have gone through the list a few times and I swear I have everything ready.  I can’t shake the feeling that I forgot something.    Guess I will find out tomorrow.   now if I can just get to sleep at a decent hour tonight…

How was your Saturday?

Anyone else ever get that antsy feeling?