Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My Two Steps Back

Marathon training has been going great. Or should I say HAD been going great. Last week I ran a new long run record of 20.5 miles on Sunday, 9 half mile repeats with 1/4 mile recovery in between with virtually no fatigue on Tuesday. Wednesday, was lower body strength training and 2 indoor soccer games where I scored a hat trick in one game, and 2 goals in the second. Thursday... a little bit of rest and recovery with U17 training. I was looking forward to Friday, which is plyometric day, but woke up with the flu instead. I hadn't been able to eat or drink anything all day, but knew I had to at least hydrate myself. After speaking with Teresa, she suggested grape juice. Now grape juice to us is a comfort drink. It reminds us of our Grandma, because she always had grape juice. Well, the thought of grape juice didn't sound all that bad, so I forced myself to sip some throughout the rest of the day. There were moments where I thought I was feeling a little better, and would drink several sips. I was WRONG. Now, I weigh the pros and cons of my decision to drink grape juice.

PRO #1 - The thought of drinking it didn't completely repulse me.
PRO #2 - It was probably the most pleasant thing I have experienced in reverse.

CONS #1 - I was left with a big purple mess to clean up.

That's right, projectile vomiting all over the bathroom floor, toilet, AND my pants. Thank goodness for tile floors and black pants. I still don't regret my decision.

Anyway, I spent all weekend on the couch. I had high hopes to work out on Monday, but was too exhausted after work. It is now Tuesday, and I was able to complete 4 half mile repeats before getting too sick to continue, and pushed through a little bit of upper body strengthening. I have 25 days until my marathon, and I am determined to overcome this setback. Of course, I could use all the support and motivation I can get. :)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

My Day Of R & R

It was the classic ending to an exhausting week. 17.25 mile run on Sunday, 7 x 800 repeats at a fast pace on Tuesday as well as back & bicep strengthening, lower body strength training (including well over a hundred lunges on each leg), followed by 2 grueling indoor soccer games on Wednesday. Joint boys & girls U17 soccer training on Thursday. Plyometric accompanied by chest, shoulder, and triceps strength training, as well as U10 training, and don't forget reffing 3 coed games on Friday. Needless to say... my legs are hammered. Saturday rolls around for some R&R? To a normal person, that means rest and relaxation. In my world? It's RACING and REFFING.

Today was the Sweetheart's 5K in Bountiful. I stayed down at Kami and Neil's as Kami was running the race with me, and as usual, I stayed up too late Friday night, which makes waking up that much more annoying. I am very particular with what I intend to wear each race, and which shoes I'll run in. I thought I had it all figured out until it got closer to race time. The weather wasn't the best as it was starting to drizzle. Kami and I headed back to my car to change our pants. I wasn't about to get mud spots all over my white pants. I was a little bit bummed. Black just didn't look as cool.

Kami wasn't the only one running the race with me. My Dad and Dottie were geared to run as well. As the old man was getting himself all put together, I had to laugh a little as he was fastening his camelback hip pack. Here's our convo...

Sly: "Are you running with that?"
Randy: "Yeah..."
Sly: "You know it's... 3 miles, right?"

As for the race, it seemed to go okay. I did get passed by a female track star, and didn't really want to kill myself to keep up with her. I just went the pace my tired legs would carry me. I continually passed people, so I still finished pretty strong, but definitely did not PR. I finished with a chip time of 22:42, which was still good enough for first in my division, 5th female, and 23rd overall. I Can't really complain about that one. Kami finished at 27:09, 4th in her division, and my Dad at 36:44, also placing 2nd in his division of... wait for it... 2 people, but 2nd nonetheless. Dottie finished at 40:47. I am eager to be done with the whole marathon race and training so I can get back to my shorter distance training. I think it may be affecting my speed.

Kami and I with Cupid at the finish line. Poor guy...

Luckily they handed out the awards without too much waiting in the cold, and I won myself a gift certificate for an entree at Texas Roadhouse. Too bad I don't eat out a whole lot, but I'm sure I'll put it to use eventually.

Luckily we had a little bit of time to go back to Kami's for a nice hot shower to warm back up, and refueling before heading to the Sportsplex to ref. I had 4 painful youth games to ref. I decided I hate reffing youth. They just kick the ball most of the time, and it seemed to be at me a little bit too much. Yes, I got hit a few times. Thanks to some gummy worms, I made it through and was ready to finally relax.

To top the day off, instead of heading straight home, I met Jessica at Rumbi's for an early dinner. It's been nice catching up with my cuz. I hope we can make this a monthly ritual as we are 2 for 2 so far this year. It is now 2:00 a.m. and finally off to bed to get my rest for my long run tomorrow. I'm shooting for 20 miles, and hoping for decent weather, and less tired/sore legs. Pray for me. :)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

My Long Run

I have forty days until I run the L.A. Marathon, and training in the winter has been brutal. The treadmill is boring, and the weather is cold and sucks. Luckily, today it wasn't bitter cold or snowing. Unlucky for me, I had a 17 miler to do. I was finally able to get a good night's sleep (9 1/2 hours), forced myself to wake up and get fueled for my run. Today's breakfast consisted of Frosted Flakes and a grapefruit, and an hour and a half later, I was out the door.

As I started on my run, I figured a way to break it up into "5 phases" so it doesn't kill me mentally. I'm also trying to document my training as much as possible, so I also decided to bring my small camera along with me. I was more than glad I did, because I got an idea in my head during phase 2, and I think that's what got me through the run. So when I go on my runs, I like to run past people's houses that I know, so my idea was to try and hit everyone's house (in the south end of the Valley) and take a picture. Here's my route.

Phase 1: I leave my house and head down the hill and turn left at the first block. I head back uphill for a little hill warmup, and turn back down to run past Scuba Steve's house. I then turn north on main street to head back up and past my house. That hill is a killer workout, and I LOVE it. I go past the Stake Center, and head south on the Millville bench and make that little loop around. I just need to get to the highway to complete the phase.

Phase 2 : Starts at the highway, heading north towards Hyrum. I tried to run on the sidewalk, but it was still covered in snow in a lot of places, and I ended up stepping in a puddle. I swore, and headed back to the side of the road. Between the inversion and the traffic, I could actually taste the gasoline. Not my favorite phase. I just need to get to main street Hyrum to complete the phase.

Phase 3: Heading west on main street, I head for the cemetery. Now the camera comes out, and it gave me a surge of energy. I first pass by my Grandpa's grave.

Next is Kenna's and my Great-Grandmother's. As you can see, there's still quite a bit of snow.

I leave the cemetery and head south on good old 500 east. I pass my Grandma's house, trying to look in the windows to see if she was home, and gave a good wave as I went past.

I head back west to get to Kimmie & Bryce's house.

Of course, Cory and Rita live next door, so I didn't have to go far to run past their house.

That phase seemed to go by the quickest, and I'm sure it's probably the shortest phase, but I continue down Kimmie's road and head for the "autobahn" leading to Nibley. I just need to get to the railroad tracks to complete the phase.

Phase 4: I was actually feeling pretty good, and mile 12 hit in the middle of the back road to Nibley, so I decided it was time for some Hammer Gel. I don't enjoy energy gels at all, but I was smarter this time. I didn't try to swallow it immediately like last time, which, I learned will trigger my gag reflex. I swish it in my mouth a little bit, trying to break it up, diluting it with my spit, and swallow in several waves. Gross, I know. After I get most of the packet down, it's followed up by a few swigs of water.

When I get to the end of the road, I head back west for the back road toward Tony's house. The phase is complete when I reach 800 west.

Phase 5: Final phase, woohoo. It actually seemed forever before I reached Heritage Park, where I head back east toward Tony & Melissa's. Thoughts of me training with AJ on the familiar road kept me going, and voila... Tony & Melissa's. Too bad nobody was watching out the window. :(

I make the loop around Nibley Elementary, and make my way back to Millville. I take the small bridge road, which leads me to Millville Elementary, and I seemed to pick up my pace a little bit. It's the home stretch. I turn back up past Scuba Steve's house.

And FINALLY... after 17.25 miles... I'm home again. I walked around the small block for a cool down, and there you have it. That's the furthest I've run so far, and I am surprised how well I handled it. I think I'll be ready for that marathon after all.

What's also important for my hard workout days, is my Protein Monster immediately after. That always helps me recover quicker and better. I should be a spokesman for Odwalla, because I swear by their C Monster brand as well. It keeps me healthy.

The best part of a long run is refueling... all 1300 calories. :) I've been logging everything I consume on a program called Perfect Diet Tracker, and I never thought I would ever hear myself say... "I need to eat more fat." Good thing we had an avacado in the house to help out with that.

Final thoughts... Oh how I miss summer.