Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Let's go funning!

I'm 16 days post-Marshall and 18 days away from Rehoboth.

I did a week of reverse taper (re: 14? miles) and then had a week that got a bit jumbled with life, but managed to get in 27 miles (two 3 milers, a 10 miler, and a 11 miler) last week.

I knew I was working from 9a-10p on Thursday for a holiday event which meant that I had to leave around 8a and got home at 10:30p. If I wasn't such a snooze button fiend, I would have gotten up early to get in a few miles. In retrospect, it was probably best that I just didn't run anyway since I was on my feet for 11ish hours. I did get a little break in the middle of the day to indulge in some coffee:
Friday, I had grandiose plans to run after work, but old friends were heading to dinner and running seemed less important. The belly laughs were good for the soul and my body appreciated the rest.

So Saturday night I finally ran. Everything seemed to be peachy keen for my boring 3 miles on the treadmill. Wore my Kinvaras.

I got up to run 10 miles before work on Sunday. Wore my Kinvaras. Immediately, I noticed my toes felt squished so I had to stop and adjust my laces. Then my calf felt mildly achy. So I tried to ease up on my speed. I wasn't looking at Penelope so I thought I was maybe running around a 8:05 pace.

By mile 6, I started to feel looser and stronger. So I ran whatever damn pace felt good. There were 2 guys running behind me (about 2/10ths of a mile back) at this point and ended up going past me at mile 7.5. I glanced at Penelope to see I was at about a 7:35 pace when they went by. The space between us grew ever so slightly, but as I came around the curve around the 8.2 mark, they were stopped and stretching. Hmmph!

It was enough fuel in my fire to keep me going to the end.
Everything was fine until I got out of my car and my right hip was so tight that I was hobbling. Whaaaa? How was I just running mere minutes ago? It lasted about 10 minutes and then eased up. After I took a shower, it was completely gone.

Needless to say, I was a bit concerned. I know I could finish Rehoboth without doing a long run between marathons, but 5 weeks with barely scraping double digits was not ideal.

So I rested Monday and spent the day with hanging out with Adam. We picked up some Maroon 5 concert tickets he had won from a radio contest downtown and ate lunch at one of our favorite burger places, The Vortex. We swung by the LRS on the way home for some long run fuel and by Target for a few other necessities.
I knew I was in for the type of run that was going to test all sorts of my guts today. Cranky hip, extreme cold (for ATL), and barely 2 weeks out from a marathon PR. The conditions were wrought for terribleness.
I decided to wear my much-more-stable Brooks' Ravennas and bundled up like I was headed to the Arctic Circle.
When I got to the Greenway, there was exactly 1 car in the parking lot and it was the park ranger. I start questioning if I am dumb or dedicated...
Put an espresso Gu and caramel macchiato Gu in my pockets and left a water and Gatorade chillaxing with a salted watermelon Gu at the trailhead.

Holy brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr pants!!!!

I didn't really feel my fingers or toes until mile 3. It was kind of distracting to warm up for the first few miles so I just tried to relax. By the time I warmed up, I noticed my left calf was achy again. I was prepared to pull the plug at any point as I really didn't want to bust myself up.

But by the time I got to miles 6-7, it loosened up and I felt much better. As I neared the turnaround point, I knew I was going to feel much better once I could chug that Gatorade. I was feeling thirsty and tired and was only halfway to my goal of 20 miles.

I decided to take a few minutes at the turnaround point. Normally I don't dawdle if I have to stop, but I was on the fence about continuing. Soon, I was back on the path wishing I had kept my gloves with me when I shed my vest.

I started dreaming of hot cocoa and promised myself a treat if I just finished this stupid run. I still wasn't looking at my watch so I just tried to put one foot in front of the other as relaxed as I could. Miles 11-15 were a bit rough, but I knew once I got to 15 that I had no choice to finish.

I realized in the last 5 miles that the Ravennas must have been the better choice because my feet felt happy and my achy calf/hip were barely worth mentioning. Things were feeling stiffer towards the end, but I recognized it more to be the tired legs of 2.5 hours of running rather than twinges.

After I stopped my watch and walked towards my car, I was pretty happy to discover the results.

Honestly, I have no plans for my time in Rehoboth. I figure things will shake out the week of as people who have real ambitions let their goals be known. I would prefer to just run it relaxed and maybe enjoy 26.2 with a friend or two. I'll be funning (you know, fun running). I might wear a tutu, I might pace a buddy, I might do a cartwheel mid-race.

Sure, I love to PR and test my limits. The amazing feeling of self-accomplishment with your own body cannot be duplicated. But I also love balance. And fun. 


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