I'm a Slacker with a running problem, wait, maybe that's backwards
Author: Fallon @ Slacker Runner
Hi! Welcome to Slacker Runner! I'm Fallon and this is where I share my love of running and sometimes my frustration. I'm on a journey to become a better runner and make healthier choices, but yes pizza is still amazing. So join me as I try to balance running and a desire to watch Netflix. :)
Disclaimer: I received an entry into Oaktown Half as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews.
Part of me wants to say it snuck up on me and the other part feels like I’ve been preparing forever.
This week has been all over the place. My plans changed pre race and I canceled my hotel. Then they changed again and I was booking a hotel on Thursday evening again. My bib was supposed to arrive this week but there was a shipping snafu. Now I am picking it up on race morning.
I’m just rolling with the punches here. Maybe. Maybe I’m just wobbly.
I am looking forward to running around Oakland again. Now, I know to be prepared for all the street art. I may keep my phone out the whole time. I’m also not sick this time so yay! (knock on wood) This is also a different course so I am looking forward to checking out the differences.
That said, I am unsure if I have a goal. I originally was aiming for a 2:12 with my training plan until I realized I was over reaching. A lot. I am not sure what to aim for now or if I even want to have a goal. I also don’t know what shoes to wear. Well, no- I do. It would be insanity to run in my new Ghost’s. They only have 5 miles on them.
I don’t know if it was cumulative fatigue with it being week 15 of my training plan or if I was fighting something. I was so damn tired all week- it was a struggle to get up in the morning, every morning. I was coughing more and every thing felt hard. To the point where when I found out I had been in close contact with someone with pneumonia, I thought “oh, that would make so much sense”.
I also took more than a few liberties with my training plan. Ok, a lot. But it wasn’t all bad- I took a great nap on Saturday. I went and saw Hobbs and Shaw– loved it. I did some shopping- possibly too much. I added 2 new beauties to the family too-
Oh and I started a new workout program- Morning Meltdown 100. Cuz’ that makes total sense 2 weeks before a half marathon, right? Oh and mine is more like evening meltdown.
Plan vs Reality
Monday- 1.5 miles/ 1 mile- MM100 1- 1/2 mile dog walk I was moving really slow for some reason and I learned that my new running shorts did not agree with me, ha! I bailed after a mile. Instead of being lazy though, I started the new Morning Meltdown 100. Yeah- not in the morning. Then I grabbed the pup and headed out for a short walk.
Tuesday- 6 miles @ HMGP/ 5 miles trying not freak out And once again, I have a panic attack during the run. What the what?? This is getting annoying. So instead of trying to nail the pace and make it worse or bailing on the run- I slowed down and made it a game instead. I changed my watch face to heart rate only and just tried to keep it under 165. I didn’t care about any other metrics, just tried to go slow and easy- walking if need be. I did one big loop back to my car. So not a total loss.
Wednesday- 1.5 miles/ ?????? MM 100 2 I ended up getting off early since I worked last Saturday. Normally I would have said no but this was one of my most tired days so I went with it. I made an appointment to finally get my tires rotated and my car washed. While I was waiting for my car, I headed over to TJ Max for some browsing time. Apparently I bumped my watch at some point and it turned on. I realized when it buzzed at the mile mark. Can I count that as a workout?
Thursday- 1.5 up/down, 5x 800 repeats/ 3 miles MM 100 3 Yeah, I didn’t even try the repeats. I just played the heart rate game again. It kept my mind distracted and wow, I have to run slow to stay under 165.
Friday- 1.5 easy/ nope I worked in 2 locations so I didn’t even bother packing a bag of running gear.
Saturday- 7 miles/ 2 hour nap Another one of those so stinkin’ tired days. In fact I was so tired, I decided my long run wasn’t happening. At all. Over both weekend days. At this point, the missed run isn’t going to hurt me at Oakland next week but pushing things might.
Sunday- Rest/ shopping and .5 mile puppy walk, MM 100 6 Shopping counts as cardio right?
10ish miles for the week. Not great but could have been much worse. I don’t regret missing my long run. For once my common sense out weighed the guilt of missing the run completely.
I love getting toys and things for my dog. Seriously, she has way too many toys. And I love buying her new collars.
But she does not get walked enough. And we are both getting a little fluffy. Most of it is my bad but part of it is that finding a harness that doesn’t drive her crazy. She doesn’t play well with the just the leash- ok, well she’s not the best behaved on the leash.
Put a harness on her and she looks like she is being tortured. Seriously, the woe is me look is priceless. She’s tried on numerous harness’s at Petco- yeah, sorry about that- but no luck. And the one she does have? She runs when she sees it in your hands.
When it arrived, she was super excited like she is anytime I tell her I got her something. Then she saw it was a harness. Then I put it on her. Cue not happy face.
It was a few days before I got her outside with the harness- thanks 108 heatwave- and at first she was her usual sour puss self, Then it was like she realized she didn’t find it annoying and looked at me like “let’s go!”. So we went.
The next time I brought the harness out she actually looked excited and ran towards me and stood still while I put it on her. Say what???
Now, I am not saying it’s all sunshine and roses now. She still comes to a dead halt to sniff something and I have to literally drag her away. But she no longer reacts like she choking when I muscle her away from whatever “awesome” scent she is smelling.
Now, it’s been hot hot hot here, so full disclosure we haven’t been on that many walks in the short time we’ve had it. However I am looking forward to more. I really need to work on getting up in the morning and taking her, but well, me and mornings are not the best of friends. She actually came running into the room one morning last week and I think she wanted to go for a walk but I told her no. I’m sorry!
For reference- Zoey is around 65 pounds and wears the large.
I am looking forward to more walks with Zoey- maybe I’ll turn her into a runner someday.
Disclaimer: I received coaching from Endure Strong as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews.
Lord knows, I could use some guidance. Left to my own devices I might just sleep all day and eat pizza. Which is counter productive to that lovely goal of breaking 2:00 in the half. That one I set ummmm, 5 years ago? However I’ve done nothing but get slower in the last 4 years.
Boo. Training plans and I don’t often get along. I’ve looked into online coaching but could never seem to take the plunge. So when the opportunity arose with Endure Strong through BibRave, I was more than a little intrigued. Throw in actual conversation with Jared Ward and I was in.
It all started with an email from Andrew- the main guy with Endure Strong– in which I was welcomed to the team and asked to create a Final Surge profile. Final Surge is the platform that Endure Strong uses to pick training plans, schedule runs, have group chats and reach out to the coaches.
Plans were organized by race distance, weekly miles and skill level. Being that I knew I was out of shape and carrying an extra 40 pounds (more on that sometime) I chose a beginner 16 week plan with a peak of 25 miles per week. Doesn’t sound like much but it was more than I was running. Plus the idea of 6 days a week kind of scared me. So much so that I kind of freaked out and emailed Andrew in a panic. I had just transferred into my position and had no idea how that transition was going to go.
The way my plan laid out, the days didn’t work me. It started with Mondays as a rest day and then 6 days of running- I needed it shifted up a day. Yes, Final Surge has a drag and drop capability but that would be tedious moving every single workout for 16 weeks. Andrew was able to make that happen and I calmed down a little. Whew.
Then it came time to run. It broke down with 3 easy, short runs, 2 speed work outs and a long run. Simple enough, right?
I was putting in the miles- mostly- and hitting the paces- mostly. Denial is a wonderful place. I was attending the bi-weekly training calls with Jared and the team and I was getting those green boxes in Final Surge.
Then the rosy glow faded a bit and I slammed into a wall of reality. Your workouts are set to specific zones. The zones are set in the account setup according to your goal race.. I picked a race time of 2:12 for Oaktown Half. See a problem?
That’s 20 minutes faster than my recent times. Over reaching much? I was paying for it- I was exhausted, hurting and flaming out in most runs. The good thing is you can adjust your zones. So I went in and reigned it in. Notice I am saying I.
Here’s where I was feeling dissatisfied. Yes, I reached out on the social wall and would get feed back from the other members and the coach but I was feeling a lack of direct feedback. I feel like a little more one on one would have been beneficial. The opening intro is all self driven- some interactions with someone smarter than me might have seen that I was over reaching. An occasional email or direct message from the coach checking in would have been appreciated.
I learned a few things while training with Endure Strong. I need some one on one time with coaching and it can’t all be me reaching out. To some extent I need a drill sergeant. I need someone to keep me accountable otherwise I either push to hard or not enough. I didn’t necessarily feel that here.
Now- I fully admit that is partly on me. I could have reached out directly more often. While the interaction of the social wall was great, I knew I needed more and I could have tried harder. It just felt a little one sided.
However, I did like the plan itself. Except for the 6 day part- my body and my brain can’t handle 6 days a week. At least not now. #goals The amount of easy running and structured running was a good mix- I am not great at that by myself. If you are looking for a little direction and a great plan, under $40 a month is a steal. There are also the biweekly calls with Jared and you can send your questions in advance or ask them while the call is taking place.
Final Surge has a few quirks but that’s on the Final Surge end. I loved the morning texts and emails with my run for the day- I never had to memorize anything too far ahead.
Endure Strong is a great option for those with a little more self motivation then myself. However I am glad that I had the opportunity to learn this about myself. I also believe that I finally built a decent base- not the goal of my plan but still a good thing. If the bones are good, I can continue to build on that. My race is still 9 days away so I have another few weeks of the training plan to go- wish me luck!
If I could stop injuring myself, that would be great.
Also could the ants stop invading my bathroom? I know they are just looking for water in the heat wave but there cannot be ants on the toilet seat!!
Last week was a little off. I started the week with a possible concussion and just rolled on from there. This is not the first time I’ve had a concussion, nor is it the first time I’ve given one to myself. Oops.
So that was fun.
Monday- 1.5 miles/ Rest Once I finally figured out what was wrong with me, I knew there was no way I was running that day. I just went home and tried to chill in a dark room.
Tuesday- 3 mile tempo, 1.5 up/down/ 1.5 miles I was still feeling off- less dizzy, mostly head pain. I took my run super slow and easy. Which might have happened anyways as it was almost 100*.
Wednesday- 1.5 miles/ 2x 1 mile repeats, 1 mile up/down I decided to attempt what I thought was the easier of my speed work and as it was 105* out, I headed to the gym. Yeah no. Lingering head pain made me super wobbly on the treadmill. My Garmin tracking was way off again too. Then I had a coughing fit and was getting the stink eye from other gym goers so I bailed. 2.25 miles done
Thursday- 3 mile tempo, 1 up/down / 2 mile tempo, 1 up/down I didn’t feel like the previous day had been an actual workout so I decided to attempt my other speedwork. It was 95* but there was a decent breeze so it felt ok. I actually probably would have finished the whole workout but I had worn the wrong shorts and the thigh chafing was extreme.
Friday- 1.5 miles/ Rest Friday snowballed and by the time I left work I was not feeling it. Plus it was the last Friday of the fair and I didn’t want to deal with any potential idiots on the roads.
Saturday- 1.5 miles/ Rest I had to work on Saturday so I had already planned on pushing my long run to Sunday. Which, considering it was 106* seemed better anyways. I meant to get out in the evening for the missed 1.5 mile run but didn’t.
Sunday- 10 miles/ 9.3 miles I set an alarm but still snoozed for 2 hours, I was out the door a little after 8. It was still too hot. I don’t know if I was still feeling the affects of the giant bruise on my noggin or what but somehow this run turned into a walk and then a shuffle. I was not feeling it at all. I kept moving forward but it was like I had no ability or desire to move any faster. It was one of those old type runs where I was running to a certain place and then my mom was picking me up to go to lunch. I hit the meeting spot at 9.3 and didn’t even care enough to push it to 10.
16.4 miles for the week. 6 miles off target and the workouts were kind of a farce but it was better than it could have been. And my head is feeling better and the heat wave broke, so yay!