Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Two Week Unplanned Running Vacation

So happy to be back to the land of the living!

At the time of my last post, I thought I was getting better. I thought wrong. My fever came back and stayed through Wednesday of last week. No bueno.

I had my first run in almost two weeks on Saturday. It was painful. Heart rate was out of control. (176 average...and that includes me walking the last 2 miles, and taking walk breaks during. Ouch.) I was so disappointed with the run, but at the same time, I got 14 miles in - so not all was lost. It just hurt. Coughing and gagging every few minutes didn't help. Ewww.

I was pretty sore. Probably from the high heart rate. Probably from not running for almost two weeks. Probably because the universe wanted to make fun of me for being so happy that I wasn't sore after my 45-mile weekend a few weeks ago...

I decided that it would be fun to take the entire family (Husband and three daughters ages 6, 4 and 2) to the track so I could attempt a recovery run on Sunday. It was awesome. The run was very short at two miles, but having them there with me was so much fun. There were some tears by my very dramatic middle daughter, who was upset that she wasn't "winning" against her big sister. Eventually, they all stopped and played soccer with Daddy.

Notice the skirts...heaven forbid we leave home without.

Warm fuzzies.

She said over and over, "This is so fun, Mommy!" 

Sunday turned out to not only be a good call for fun family time, but it also allowed me to work the soreness out, and I felt much better after.

My runs this week have been back to normal. I'm still pretty tired, but I suppose that can be expected post-plague. And now, I just coast into the Post Oak Challenge for this weekend...

And speaking of the Post Oak Challenge, I am so excited. I am heading to Tulsa with two of my most cherished girlfriends, and I am so happy to have some time to enjoy their company. The entire setup of the Post Oak Challenge is awesome. All runs both Saturday and Sunday start from the Post Oak Lodge. We're staying on property, so we'll literally be right by the start (and finish). This will be a very welcome change most of my previous marathons, where I've had to arrive 2 hours early. It will be a weekend full of friends and a bunch of people who love running just as much as we do. I love the concept.

The Saturday runs are all on technical trails. As in...something I've never even stepped foot on. The race director promises single track trail, rocks, roots, hills, and creek crossings. (Oh snap. And I'm signed up for the 25k.) While I have never done this before, I am going to channel my inner Indi, who sneaks onto trails when they are closed because she can't stand road running anymore. I hope to come away after appreciating the love of trail running that so many people possess.

Sunday I am signed up for the full marathon. They are calling it a "Troad" marathon. (Paved trail and road the entire way.) I don't expect anything other than a finish, which is perfect.  It occurred me to me last night that as of this Sunday when I'm running I have another marathon 3 weeks later, a half marathon 4 weeks later, and my first Ultra 5 weeks later.  So really, this is just a training run on tired legs which is ideal. And I get a medal at the end.

I hope everyone has a great finish to the week, and an awesome weekend. I'm sure I'll be back next week with sore legs and some stories of our weekend adventures. There are always adventures when girlfriends take road trips...

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Last Week = Awesome. This week = Notsomuch.

I had such a great training week last week! 66 miles total.  Due to weather, I ended up on the treadmill for 6 miles Tuesday, 10 miles Wednesday, and 5 miles Thursday. Nothing too crazy - but great, solid runs.

Saturday was my 20 miler. Fabulous. Great company. Great run.

Sunday was my 25 miler. Fabulous. Great company. (Minus running buddy aka: Coach Scott being sick and bailing partway through...though he still drove his car around and checked in on me. So kind.) Also had my first practice eating real food (pb&j) during a run. It was awesome. I think the best part of ultra training is: solid food on the run. Love it!

No soreness whatsoever, despite my 45 mile weekend! Score! I was anticipating joint pain, etc. But, nada. Giant confidence boost! Legs were tired, but I truly felt fantastic.

I started feeling a little feverish, though. Monday I was sort of blah, then Tuesday I was down for the count. Realized I would not be running. Wednesday, same thing. No run, and was so sick I didn't even care. Fever, cough, headache, chills, body aches, you name it. No bueno. It was around this time I also realized that my 30 miles that is upcoming on Saturday (and 15 Sunday) is probably not happening. The really great part? I'm totally fine with that. I'm at a place in my training where I really truly get that these rest days that I wasn't anticipating aren't a bad thing. And that running merely to get my runs in, despite feeling completely awful, would do more harm than good. (Those were Coach Scott's words.) I've run before when "sick" - but this was the type of sick where even being upright wasn't happening. I mothered from the couch like a champ.

I'm happy to report that today I am beginning to feel better. Fever is mostly gone, I was actually able to be upright long enough to take a shower, do some stuff around the house, and to sit at the computer and write this. (I really did plan to update my blog earlier this week because I was so excited from my fantastic weekend of running! Darn sickness.) I'm still not sure how I feel about this weekend. I plan to pow-wow with Coach Scott tomorrow to decide what to do. I'm thinking with the way I feel today, by Saturday I should feel pretty great. I may not make it 30 miles (and, keep in mind, this would be my first time beyond 26.2, and I really want to give myself a fighting chance to finish feeling good) - but I'm ok with that.

It feels really awesome to be at a healthy place, mentally. Despite being a psycho planner, I'm very much at peace with the fact my training is getting turned upside down this week, and perhaps even into this weekend. There's no sense of doom or panic or anything else negative. I am very calm and happy about where I am. Cannot beat that feeling. 

I hope everyone is having a great week and that the sickness I had stays far far away from you.

As a side note, I have started fundraising again with Team in Training. This time around, I'm raffling an Apple iPad (yes, iPad, not iPod)! If you're interested in purchasing a raffle ticket, please click the logo on the right. Thank you!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The rest of January.

I left you hanging. I apologize. My husband went to Canada for a ski trip for TEN days, leaving me to solo parent our three girls. It went well, though. I got all of my runs in despite his absence. We welcomed him home with our two-year-old puking all night the first night, our 4-year-old the second night, and the 6-year-old for the next 4 days. Good times.

I did, in fact, end up doing my long run on January 12. (2 degrees with a -14 windchill. Wow.) I used Yaktrax for the first time, and they were wonderful. My calves burned like crazy on that run! We cut it back to 13.1 miles - I just didn't have the full 15 miles in me. My eyelashes were frozen and very beautiful. So proud that I got the run in outdoors - it gave me the appreciation of 20 degree weather that I didn't possess before. Special thanks to Coach Scott for not wimping out on me that morning.

Because I cut that run short, I accomplished my 2nd long run the next morning (equally cold) at the gym. 17 miles on the indoor track. 170 laps. Not bad at all, and I actually had quite a bit of fun doing it. (Surprise, surprise. Me, having fun?)

I had four runs on the treadmill while my husband was gone. I like to avoid the treadmill. It couldn't be avoided, and I learned to love it. It was a great tool to have and it allowed me to get done what I needed to get done while also not leaving my children at home by themselves. I'm such a good Mommy...

25 miles were on schedule for Saturday, January 22. Coach Scott and his wife (Jenn, who is also a dear friend of mine) stayed at my house on Friday night, along with their son. Jenn was on kid duty Saturday morning starting at 5am, and Coach Scott and I accomplished our 25 miles. (My 2nd long run on Sunday was very short, and only called for 5 miles. Yahoo!)  Thank you, Jenn and Scott!

Normal miles this week, though I did run on Friday (my usual rest day). It was 70 degrees in Kansas! Saturday called for 10 miles. It was hot and I had no water. I had good company in the Fair Weather Runner, The Running Lawyer, Shelley, and Aaron. Sunday's run was back to being freaking cold, and Jenn and I got our 20 miles in (fine. Technically 20.5 - I never round up). Our friend Lauren joined us for 10 miles, and it was her first double-digit day! So fun!

Very exciting tidbit: January was my very first 200 mile month. And it has been a year since I started running! I'm so happy and thankful. Such an awesome thing we're all able to do. I couldn't have done it without the help and support of my husband, my three little girls, Coach Scott, and each and every one of my running buddies. I'm thankful for their support and love!

February is starting off cold. And windy. And snowy. Today I'll be on the treadmill, probably tomorrow and Thursday on the treadmill as well. This weekend I've got 25 Saturday and 20 way am I staying on the treadmill for those runs!

Have a fantastic week.