Normally I don’t write about my training runs in detail, and it’s nothing new for me to race or run every day of the weekend (Fri,Sat,Sun) but this weekend was an attempt at something special.
Fri: 3.1 miles
Sat: 12-17 miles
Sunday: 15-16 miles
Report is not up yet, waiting on pictures…but I completed the Jackson Nightglow 5K Friday night. Rrunning a 5K faster than I did only 12 days prior! Saturday Gale and I went to OC for what ended up being 11.7 miles and Sunday Gale and I went out locally for another Buckeye Trail run. She made it the full distance; I made it to 6.7 and stopped.
Was a GREAT day. Despite my slackerness I was not the last one at the parking lot. Leaving me plenty of time to say “hello” and get my gear in order. I was tired as sin from the night before. I didn’t get to bed until after 12 (then woken around 1 w/ drunk texts…thanks for the love friends) and then up before 5 for real. Guess who got coffee on their way to PA?
I tried out my new Nathan Synergy pack….learned a few adjustments I’d like to try…will post a full review soon.
At the start I wasn’t sure if I felt like running or hiking, but Gale wanted to run and I didn’t want to be alone. Soon we found a comfortable pace and before we knew it we were at 3 then 4 then 5 miles and at the end of the first loop. We were clearly tearing it up more than the last time, keeping around a 19-20 minute pace (compared to our 23-30 mintues the last time when we just “hiked”). We felt GREAT too. I hate to admit hydration is so important.
After refueling and using the bathroom we were off to the second loop. This was section 4 of the Oil Creek route and probably the “toughest”. It is where I totally and utterly fell apart and tried to die last fall. It was special to me to attack this section again. A few times my legs (calves) did not want to play and I fell behind Gale. Before she knew it though I powered through and caught up with her!
With about 5 miles to go I heard Gale say in a panicked voice “Oh shit” and I look past her up the hill and I see it too. A black bear!
|This is a black bear|
Only it wasn’t a black bear. It was a black…Newfoundland dog. Yep. We’re winners.
|This is NOT a black bear|
We laughed about it with his owner and kept going. The last few miles were a little tricky as I was starting to get slightly tired. Not physically tired, but lack of sleep tired. I officially decided to switch my shoes for the race from my Brooks to Asics. The Asics are a heavy shoe, but I feel they are slightly wider and have a lot more to grip and stabilize my underfoot. This is something I need right now as I am starting to be more comfortable with my trail running and am speeding up, putting me in trickier situations.
At the end of 12 miles (11.7) I was surprised how great I felt with the added hydration and told myself to also use FOOD in the future. I used a perpetuem solid and enjoyed how it processed for me…but that isn’t enough. I think I also need salt tabs given the state of my fingers. Although we felt good and strong, we opted not to do the additional 5 mile loop. We wanted to be tired for Sunday’s run, not ruined. We walked over to the canoe launch and plopped into the river. It was cool and refreshing. My legs thanked me for sure! Yes, there were fish all around me, I didn’t freak out (as much) except for when I thought one bit the back of my shorts. Coincidently at that moment I farted on the fish…that will teach them to swim near me!
Was almost not as great. Again I didn’t get the sleep I wanted, no reasons this time, I just felt restless. Part of me thinks it’s the lack of AC in the house, making my allergies go crazy every night. It hasn’t been warm though and I don’t pay the bill, so I don’t get a vote. I woke and luckily everything was gathered from the night before. After throwing on my clothes I was out the door. I felt sick and couldn’t think of anything I wanted to eat as breakfast. I managed to eat one of my Marathon Bars (protein) and was glad to have something and that it was gentle. We all parked at the end station of this point to point course and car pooled . Chatting with the other guys in the car I was assigned I realized how far out of my league I still am with trail running. No one seemed to have sympathy for my fear of the heat, apparently that is a draw of this particular race…beating the heat and humidity. LOVELY.
Once we drove over to the start, we were detoured by the parks about one mile. Joy. Everyone started jogging up the main road back to where we caught the trail. My legs were like “Screw you” and I was like “Listen, we don’t have a choice. We’re miles from the car, no one else is awake at this hour and this was the plan! The plan was to hurt”! I was surprised to see 14-something pop up on my Garmin. Yes, slow for the road, but faster than I imagined I was going, and still within my 15-20 minute pace requirement.
At the actual trail I met up with Gale and another Grunt Girl named Anastasia, we got onto the trail together and she (Anastasia) mentioned she was aiming for just under 5 hours. Gale and I liked this estimate. Right away though my legs were all “Oh J/K we like you when you take us off the asphalt” and I was all “That’s what I thought’! So G and I were able to pull away from A even if that wasn’t the plan.
I kept steady for a few miles, G and I made it to 4 miles around 1 hour so that was an excellent pace. On race day you need to keep about a 19 -20 minute pace to not get DQ’ed. Then G found a new wind and my knees started talking back on the hills. It wasn’t long before I knew I couldn’t do it anymore. A passed me on an exceptionally long down hill and I resigned to walking.
Walking wasn’t too bad, I kept hydrated and fueled, and pleasant. My plan was to call Mom and drop if needed. Needed meant a lot of pain and a very slow pace. At the end of 5 I was almost over 20 minutes, at 6 I was considerably over 20 minutes. Then I saw I was at a main road. I had no idea the next time I would see a road again, where she could pick me up. So, I made the choice and called for a ride. Better to stop by choice then keep going and make a real injury of my legs. I understand I don’t have that luxury on race day, but let’s cross that bridge if it happens.
While waiting for Mom I snapped a few “bored” pictures and said ‘Hi’ to passing cyclists as I was at an intersection.
|Smiling in the sun|
|My rescue vehicle!|
Oddly enough I received a text from Brian around that time, asking me if I’d like to go to the baseball game. It sounded like a fun time, so I agreed. I am happy to report I had a FANTASTIC time. We made it through I think 6 or 7 innings before the fear of rain set in and the time just flew by. When the rain hit Brian and I retreated to the Terrace something or other where we were rewarded with Happy Hour! Of course this made the rest of the game fun as well. Ha. Brian “yelled” at me, saying if I don’t eat right while training of course I’m going to be ass tired. I just smiled and sipped my fancy Cosmo and stored it in my special Brian Box part of my brain. This is a part of my brain where what he says, I act like I don’t believe him or care..then days or weeks or months down the road I act like I recently discovered the exact thing he told me. And I tell him “Wow I should have listened to you”. He totally loves when I do this! NOT!
|View from our seats, only 2 rows back. Thank you Brian’s company!|
It was totally retro day too, because he is LAZY and didn’t shave. So he was all fuzzy like when we were dating and I liked it. Because he acts way too fancy now and it makes me laugh at him. After the game we went to Macaroni Grill. I wasn’t hungry…but I did create this AWESOME dish knowing I could eat it the next day. For whatever reason I really wanted fettuccine alfredo with meatballs. I did the create your own dish option, and they didn’t have fettuccine listed, so I wrote it in myself. My server laughed, but said it could be done. We ate and chatted and had what I perceived as a fabulous time. Which is nice, because I was an insane person as I finished my graduate degree and internship so I think he thought I didn’t know how to be fun anymore. We colored on the table with the crayons and played “House-Tree-Person” where I pretended to analyze his drawings. Then I made pictures of all the fruits he isn’t allowed to eat.
|Don’t you wanna put it in a museum?|
After dinner we watched a movie…and when I say we watched a movie what I mean is…I watched a movie, he passed out. The movie was Drawn Together and it made me think back on the time I was dating Pat. I miss those days sometimes. He was frustrating, but he forced me to really think about things. I liked going over after work and cuddling under the blanket and watching TV. Just having a routine. That’s what I miss most about a lot of things, a boyfriend, a job, school…hmm. I like structure and predictability! Inside jokes too. Like how we would mimic Foxy Brown (character) and say “For real real, not for play play?”
I hope everyone else had an equally fabulous weekend!