Wednesday, January 16, 2013

"You Change, Just Like the Weather..."

Side note: I just got done power cleaning our apartment. It was getting to the point of needing it, especially after the Techie was camped out sick for two days earlier this week. I was about to tweet something, all proud of myself, when I saw this gem I had saved on my desktop.

Well played, some eCards. Well played.

Anyway, t-minus 1.5 days until the Duluth Renegades re-invade International Falls.

I'm excited--if it's anything like last year it will be a great weekend trip with some great friends. In terms of the race itself, I have some mixed feelings. I'd love to repeat or build upon last year's success, but I don't know how that will shake out. The field is going to be stronger (a few from our group are significantly faster than I am), and I think if I go in with any kind of expectation I'll psych myself out. Oh, and then there's that small detail of running both the 5K and 10K, which means an entirely different strategy. What that is, I haven't quite figured out yet. So, until then, I am going in with the mindset that I am having fun and logging some great miles with even greater friends. Sounds good, right?

Another thing I'm trying to figure out is just what to take and wear for this event. Cold weather running poses enough challenges in and of itself, but throw in that I'm running two races less than an hour apart, and I don't know exactly what weather I'll be dealing with, and I find myself thinking I should just pack all of my running clothes and make it a game-time decisions. Practical? Not in the least. So, scratch that idea and back to square one. 
Here is the latest version of the forecast: 
This is the warmest I have seen this forecast. Earlier this week, we were looking at a high of 0, with -36 degree wind chills. So, 14 sounds absolutely manageable, if not downright warm. I am thinking that the outfit I wore last year should be a good starting point, and bringing a complete dry change so I'm not standing around getting chilled. I'm sure in that abyss of a dresser, I have another set I could use...

So, here's hoping I don't freeze my gizzard off, and we have just enough fun that they'll allow us back in 2014!

Monday, January 14, 2013

2013, Week 2 recap

This week was an exercise in setting high expectations, and not exactly following through. I'm a little (OK, more than a little) disappointed in myself. However, if I look at 2013 as a full year project and not just nailing the tiny details week-in-and-week-out, I think I'll be far more successful.

Here's how it shook out:
(Once again, screen capped from my Athleticore log).

5 running days, 2 off days.

Running days: OK, so I didn't hit the 25/week I should to hit 100 miles/month. However, the running days in themselves were quite solid. Monday was a negative split run. Wednesday was 2-4-6-4-2 intervals with  equal recovery. Thursday, I ran with two guys from my winter running group (Renegades!), and while it was pushed maybe a little harder than I had originally planned I was surprised that I could still do it. Maybe I'm not as bad off for next week as I think...? Saturday was supposed to be an 8-10, but I just plain wimped out. It was icy, and I had people staying with me, so I cut it short so I could say I still did something. I'm still conflicted on this one.
Off days: Nothing to report. Just 2 days I straight up rested. The jump in mileage left me a little more sore than I was expecting, so stick/roller/soaking was done.

This week, I also decided to check back in with my eating and make sure I was behaving. I know that in training, what you do in the kitchen is often just as important as what you do in the gym/trail/workout area of choice. Sunday-Wednesday, I was doing really, really solid. I was coming in right around or just under my calorie goal*, eating lots of fresh fruit and veggies, keeping everything really balanced. I did feel kind of persistently hungry, despite the high fiber and solid amount of protein, though, which may have contributed significantly to Thursday and Friday. Those days... not so much.
Thursday marked 4 years in which my husband and I have been together. As per tradition, I made a pretty simple yet nice meal, and followed the only stipulation: we eat at the table with no added distraction. (One might argue that we should do that all the time, but I digress). We also had Key Lime pie for dessert, which is our favorite (and the pie we shared at our wedding). That slice alone tipped it over for the day, big time.
Friday was just my mind going, "well, you already messed up yesterday, and now it's the weekend. So, why not?". I stopped tracking after lunch, but if it was under 3000, I'd be shocked. It was, however, the first time all week I felt full. The weekend was a wash, as well, with hockey friends in town and many a beverage consumed. But, it's a new week, and another chance.

So, where that leads me going in to this week: well, I am "racing" this weekend. The same running group I mentioned before is headed north to International Falls, MN for the "Freeze Yer Gizzard Blizzard Run." Last year, the temp outside was a balmy -11 degrees F when we started, but it was my best race and highest finish to this point:
This year, I bit the bullet and paid the extra $10 to run both the 5K and 10K, and it looks to be just as cold if not more so. I am still unsure whether or not that was my most brilliant decision, but carpe diem, eh? So, with 9.3 racing miles down the chute, I think my weekday runs may be a bit on the short side this week, with one more interval/speed thing thrown in to get things moving. Also, I am going to start tracking again, but perhaps up the calorie goal and see how that works.

In closing news, you are also looking at Northland's newest blog contributor! I haven't posted over there, yet, but it will be different content than this one. I'm excited for another project!
Have a great day, everyone!

*for a woman of my size, stature, and activity level who is looking to maintain her weight, not lose. Funny, everyone I talked to this week about tracking looked at me in horror when I said I was, but relaxed when I said I was just maintaining.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

2013 Week 1 recap

One down, fifty-one to go.

Here's how this week went down:

(Screen-capped from my Athleticore log.)
5 running days, 1 "cross training" day, 1 off day.

Running days: Something about being home makes me put in some bigger-than-I'm-used-to mileage. It's nothing spectacular this time around, but it was bigger than what I did in the weeks leading up to this one. Monday, the clear exception, was an easy, short one as it was all we had time to fit in and it was my sister's test run after taking time off for a shin problem.

Cross training days: Goss family rule. It is "bad juju" to run on New Year's Day. The year one of us did ended in pretty bad injury, so we reserve that day to recovery, relaxing, and a walk if weather conditions/our conditions permit. It felt good to get out and move after all the junk consumed the night before. And, it felt good to also feel well enough to get out and move, unlike some years in the past. Am I growing up and learning some self control? I wouldn't take it that far, but I made some more mature decisions this New Year's Eve, and I'm proud of that.

Off day: I wouldn't quite call it that, but I didn't exactly get out and run, therefore "off". Instead, I unpacked, put away Christmas, and deep cleaned my kitchen and bathroom.

So, the week ends at 25.8. Only 23.8 of those fall within the new year, but I decided a 10 today wasn't in my best interests and opted to go off of the complete week. This is not a bad start to 2013's goals. Not in the least.
In the next few weeks I need to get a training program for Bayshore hammered together, and start finalizing what other long races I'll do this year.

Side note: I just realized that it is 4:55 CST, and here in Duluth it is still daylight! I am SO happy the days are starting to get longer again. I wasn't sure how much more I could take of it being pitch black by 4:45.
On to week 2!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Brushing off some dust

Why, hello there.

As usual with any kind of blogging hiatus, I had about 10 different points in which I was going to come back here and post and something got in the way. So, here I sit, 6 months since my last post, coming back to this.

I am not going to completely recap the last 6 months. For one, it's too much time to properly fit in to one post. Secondly, most of the people who would read this either follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or in real life, so you know most of the details. In case there are a few who stumble here who would like the blank filled in, here are the major points:

~I officially finished my first marathon. It wasn't the race I had originally signed up for, the Walker North Country Marathon, but rather the Thunder Bay "Miles With the Giant" Marathon. I just had fun with it, dropping any notions of a time goal after training wasn't anywhere near solid or consistent. Official finish time was 3:58:21. I had fun, and the bug bit hard, I am gunning to find marathon #2.

~Went back to Marquette and ran the half there again. 1:54:10, ran it as my last double digit before what I thought would be Walker. Not thrilled, but it was a solid training run if you look at it from that angle.

~I hit my mileage goal for 2012 on 12/20. 1000 miles. At a few points, it looked like it was not going to happen without some monster runs in the later months. What I discovered was that even just getting out for a half hour consistently helped me get there more than anything.

~I ran my first official, non-NMTC, trail race. It was the Harder'n'He!! Half Marathon, and it truly lived up to its name. Killer hills, rocky single track, lots of falling. So much pain, but it was pretty great, too.

~My store helped produce the Superior Man Tri this summer. Craziness. Pandemonium. Chaos. But, I learned so much. And, when I got to put the finisher medal on the final finisher--a 74 year old man--it made the whole thing worth it for me. I can't see a 70.3 on my schedule any time soon, but it was really neat to see all the behind-the-scenes of a Triathlon.

~Honeymoon out west. I fell in love with Portland, OR. Head over heels. What a fantastic city. I also got to see the city in which my mother was born (Port Angeles, WA), and run along both the Willamette River and the Puget Sound, as well as see an MLS (Go, Timbers!) and a CFL (Go, BC Lions!) game. Such a great adventure out there.

~ (Obligatory mention of married life). So far, so good. We still like each other, we're still having fun. It hasn't been without a few bumps, but it wasn't anything different than we experienced as a dating couple or an engaged couple. I'll tell you what, though--it is nice to have that wedding in the rearview mirror. The event was awesome, but I was so over the planning portion. It's nice to just be able to enjoy being together and going about our life. My new name seems to be a bit hard to wrap minds around. Mispronunciations, forgetting about the fact I hyphenated, not being sure how to address envelopes to both of us... oh well. It is my name, and I like that I represent two pretty cool families with it.

So, now that 2013 is here, what is on the docket?
~Two mileage goals. First, I'd like to consistently put in a minimum of 100 miles a month. I know if I knuckle down, focus, and make sure I get out consistently this will be easy to attain. I just can't slack. Secondly, I would like to hit 1500 miles on the year. I almost feel as if I'm shooting a bit high on that, but I'd rather aim high and miss than aim low and not feel satisfied. Besides, if I'm shooting for 1500, which is 125 miles/month, then it makes hitting 100 miles/month almost a given. So, either or.
~Crack 1:45 for the half marathon. I'm going back to Bayshore and may or may not be going back to Marquette. That goal has been taunting me since Bayshore in 2011, and I'd like to finally check that one off my list.
~Marathon #2. For a while, I thought I'd be heading west for this and running the Columbia Gorge Marathon.  However, a long look at the finances and a chat with Brandon resulted in me shelving that idea until 2014. I'm currently researching fall marathons in Michigan, so I can have my family at the finish line of this one. (Running my first in Canada meant that I didn't get a chance to talk to my family until a few hours after I ran, which I was not OK with.)

And, so this post isn't entirely me talking at you, I leave you with a picture. Me crossing the finish line at Thunder Bay, officially adding my name to the ranks of those who completed 26.2:
And, I promise--somewhat more consistent posting in 2013.
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