Monday, November 21, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up Extrordinaire!

A good weekend was had by all, with (perhaps) the exception of my stomach who was VERY sad after being overloaded with yummy birthday goodies. URGH. (it seemed worth it at the time to eat oysters, sweetbreads, a slab of pan seared flounder, a lemon buttermilk tartlet, a slab of cheese, (and later...) pumpkin whoopie pies, fondue, mushroom risotto ball things, Martha Stewart style beef stroganoff, and so on and so forth.) What can you do??

Needless to say when I woke up pre-race on Saturday I was a little icky. (and I had not even consumed half of said items yet.) Again, WHAT can you do?! I took a few pepto, ate some boring toast, force fed myself a yogurt and was on the fast track to a full recovery.

It was a perfect day for a race! Sunny, low 40's and windy (it is always windy.) I had very different expectations than the last time I 5K'd for a few reasons. Let's review, shall we? (and here shall end my Epic Blogging Week-ish. NO idea how ANY of you manage to pull off a whole month of this!)

-I 5K best if I take it VERY easy leading up to the race. Like, a 6 mile week. THAT didn't happen as the weather was too good to pass up on making quality mileage. STRIKE ONE!

-The race was all on dirt and grass, a medium that I don't run on much. STRIKE TWO!

-Speed work. NOT! STRIKE THREE!

Regardless I had come to the conclusion that I should enjoy myself, run as well as I could on that day (what a novel concept) and know that a PR was not a reasnable goal.

I only have positive things to say about how the race went and considering my typical struggle with the 5K distance (I hate sprinting) and my tendency to run the last mile in like 47 minutes, AND the feeling I usually get that I wish to DIE this is very good indeed. I ran with brutal and honest consistency. (thnks gps) However, the race was NOT brutal and I never wished to lie down and wait for the paramedics even though I was running much faster than I have been able to manage in practice. Even though it was a very small race I passed 10 or so people in the last mile (which accounts for more than 10% of the runners!) The course was a teensy bit long according to the ever honest GPS but that's cool- better long that short so it "counts"!

The one tricky thing about this race was the FOUR hairpin turn-arounds. I found that no matter how I prepared for the little buggers there was NO way to keep a good pace around them. Given the fact that I had the chance to do them FOUR times I tried a variety of things, none of which worked. SLOW. SLOW!

And YES, I (along with everyone) was soundly beated by the State Champ, a skinny, leggy little kid who has legit skills. He runs in the manner of a gazelle, barely skimming the ground as he runs 5 minute miles with barely a modicum of effort. Little asshole....!

In conclusion, to finish in 24:08 was just fine, I won my age division (proving it was, indeed, a very small race) and was thr 4th or 5th place woman. I had to skedaddle before the official results were in but I'm pretty close on the final results!

So, from here I have another 5K in mid-December that I am running with a friend then it will be winter, 2012 and we'll see where the road takes me!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

5K today!

I zipped around a 5K today- and by "zipped" I mean I drove in, jumped out of the car and ran the race, ran BACK to the car and went back to work (people were still running, lots of people...)

I am VERY happy with how today went, and most of you will be shocked by that since my recorded finish time was 24:08. (3.14 miles, 24:08 giving me an average pace of 7:43 I think.) (GPS said at 5K I was at 23:57- silly extra 15 steps...)

EVERY mile was completed with the first number being "7" which is incredible considering what I have been managing lately...

MORE tomorrow- including the gory details of off road running,hairpin turns, being lapped by the state champion who runs like a little 17 year old Ryan Hall and my results. Stay tuned!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Today is the day... when I become a WOMAN!


(I shout that thing about becoming a woman every year on my birthday and I AM STILL WAITING!)

I LOVE my birthday. I do not have any issues with aging and I usually enjoy spending the day working per the norm and eating good food (thanks Mom!) I had butterscotch bread pudding for breakfast- need I say more? Then I had a little 5 mile run- the bread pudding did me well and stayed put where it belonged!

It was a solid day. My clients brought me candy and scrub brushes for horse buckets (this was a funny gift!) The Huz is going to take me to dinner tomorrow at the very best-EST place ever.

I am intending to finish up my day, go home and drink a couple of beers to celebrate the fact that I have been able to do so legally for 11 years now. Hooooray to being 32!!

PS: I will continue the streak of blogging thru the Birthday weekend- yes, WEEKEND, I am a CELEB! Longest blogging streak EVER.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Running Haters

Do any of you notice that Running Haters are usually NOT EVEN RUNNERS??!

True, I have a love/hate relationship with running but in the end I LOVE it and try to do it as often as possible, even if I am not the worlds best or fastest.

I was talking to my coach today, an elite rider who is quite a bit better than I.

Coach: I don't know how you do it, you are going to ruin your knees for sure.

Me: You know what I normally say to that? "I might end up with bad knees but you are out of SHAPE!" HAHA! (but she is not, and she knew this was tounge in cheek)

Coach: (sadly) I can't even run two feet....

Me:(helpfully, and stating the obvious) You might be going to fast?

Coach: Maybe, but I really can't do it. I have asthma.

Me: Well. Lots of people with asthma run, and I know some personally so know it can be done, can be done well and you are only a mild case. You could start off really slow, take lots of walk breaks, easy stuff!

Coach: Really, when I try to run to airport terminals I get all out of breath, I just can't run.

Me: (getting sick of conversation) When you run in the airport you are most likely hampered by luggage, running faster than you can manage and under pressure. And honestly, do you even want to run??

Coach: No because I can't. And it would probably ruin my knees.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Running Geek...

Oh My. I am Forrest Gump.

Sorry about the blurry, my Mom took this pic and I imagine that she was quaking from horror (who wouldn't??)

Owww yeah, awwww yeah. I'm sorry but this is Legen... WAIT FOR IT!!!!... DARY!

What am I doing here? Go ahead and guess.

Just barely snuck in today's episode. BUSY!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Marathon Musings for Monday

I would imaging that the thought of successfully completing a marathon is something that has danced thru the mind of almost every semi serious runner out there.
This is getting to be something that is on my mind lately, and that I have rather mixed feelings about. It is true that 10 months ago I had never run farther than 4 miles and that a 10K was still a questionable goal. Since then I have proven to myself that I can complete the Half Marathon distance in some degree of health and physical soundness. **ahem** Truth be told, I have proven to myself that I can, in fact, RUN the full 13.1 miles on no legitimate training what-so-ever and emerge unscathed. (slow, but unscathed none the less.)

Could I have continued another 13.1? HELLS to the NO. No, NO, NO.

Do I think that I would have to become 100% more committed to my training plan than I was last winter when I managed my best Half time? YES, YES, YES!

AND... Do I honestly think that I can fit that into my schedule? (I work 50-70 hour weeks. No lie) Well, no I do not. I simply can NOT imagine finding the time to fit 40+ miles into my week- I don't know how you working gals do it. Please send me some of the kool-aid that you are drinking at your earliest possible convenience!

Here is how I see it. I could probably kinda train and finish, kinda slow. Or very slow. Is that what I want? I am not sure that I can say at this time. I have been finding myself thinking seriously of trying the full distance, if for no other reason that to say I did it. BUT! (and this is a but but for me...) I honestly have a hard time doing things half way, and imagining myself finishing 26.2 miles in 6+ hours reminds me of riding a Grand Prix test (just to check it off your bucket list) and getting a 55%. Not so hot.

A good comparison, there. Grand Prix is the highest level in Dressage and it takes a hell ton of training and years to get there. (and most horses will never make it to that point, period, good rider up on them or not.) Case in point, I am lucky to have trained over the past 13 (count 'em) years a horse of my own, from being a badass baby to FEI dressage. He is thisclose to being able to complete the Grand Prix test but in all probability we would not score as well as I would like to. This is because he is not an athletic dynamo, but is a very good boy who I love and respect for being the interesting critter that he is. He might NEVER be the kind of Grand Prix horse who can throw down huge scores, and that is just fine. A good friend of mine has said to me "Hey, you are THISCLOSE. Just DO it because life with horses is SO uncertain that he could come up lame tomorrow and it could be YEARS until you are THISCLOSE again!!" And I say "True. BUT to get a score that will reflect well upon me professionally I will have to push this horse past his physical limits, making him sore, maybe lame and definitely not happy. He is VERY good at what he does now so here we shall stay for the time being." The string that ties marathon running to FEI dressage is that in order to be really good at it you (or your horse) need to be a crazy freak of an athlete, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound and prone to eating small children for breakfast. Or similar...

In my running there is no partner involved and the only one I can inflict severe mental and physical strife upon is my own silly self. And hey, that means that if I wish to run 342.98 marathon miles then a: I can only hurt myself and b:there certainly isn't any shame to be found in finishing slow.

This has been on my mind as of late mostly because if I choose to go for it it will HAVE to be in the Spring. As we have all discovered over the years I have no time to train for a 1K from May to September so anything longer than the length of my driveway is OUT.

I'd love to hear some opinions, training suggestions, scoldings, recipes for whatever all you super-women out there eat to make you so damn fast, and maybe a non-paid assistant to free up some of my time. Thanks and Thanks!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The name of my blog, de-mystified.

I do appriciate the fact that the population of the internet does not think that almost 32 is "middle" aged.

I must say, that I do not either.

Back before this blog I had one called "middle aged waitress" telling the sordid tale of a horrible job that I was unfortunate to have. In the waitressing industry (although not at this particular hell hole) I felt quite a bit like a middle aged person in a sea of barely legal tartlets.
(feel free to check it out- go back to the begining and live the horror that was my LIFE!!

Needless to say, the name just stuck! Accurately, I consider myself to be a "median" age runner but that does not have the same catchy ring to it that "middle" aged runner does, ya know?

Sorry about the short post today, I promise more entertainment tomorrow. I have a lot on my plate as I have my fabulous cousin visiting and we have a fun activity planned. Called "The Worlds Worst Trip To The Dump" and involves the relocation (to the dump) of a large amount of construction materials. Which have been sitting in my basement since 2007.

And y'all thought that I didn't know how to show my houseguests a good time! HAH!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Will the Big 12 happen??

**Update** Yesterday evening I ran 5 miles, on the road, in a snow squall, up massive hills and a 19 MPH headwind (wtf...) at an average pace of 8:22 per mile. TAKE THAT!!****

I had a few simple goals coming into the 2011 "Race" season.

-Run a 10K (did it)
-PR in a 5K (not gon' happen)
-Run a Half Marathon (did 3!!)
-Run 12 races (well... Only about 3 days left in 2011 so it's not looking good!)

As it stands right now I have 9 races under my belt. The 3 halfs. 2 10K's. A 4 miler. And 3 miserable 5K's! (MAN how I hate those 5K's...)

At this time of year there is very little to do and I missed my shot at another Half due to the wounded foot crap of doom and gloom.

I have signed up for two 5K's (UGH.) One local, boring and thoroughly dismal one on November 20 and another, more fun and beer laden opportunity in Mid December.

I would like to make my 12 race goal happen. I just have to decide if it is worth it to take a weekend morning off (loosing lots of money from the clients I would be missing out on) and driving at least 3 hours total for a dreaded 5K.

Time will only tell...

Friday, November 11, 2011

The proof is in the numbers. And the numbers SUCK!

Remember that 5K I ran back in September? The one where I had the feeling that I was running faster than I had EVER RUN BEFORE? The race where despite the fact that I ran as HARD as I could I missed a PR by a decent chunk of time and actually recorded one of my slowest 5K times? (and yes, it was still quick enough. BUT I felt like I was running 7 minute miles and was pretty pissed.)

After that race I ran a Half, hurt my foot and was on the DL for 3 weeks. I needed something new and entertaining to get my thru my recovery runs so I downloaded a couple apps- I map my run and the Nike one. I figured it would be fun to see my routes and to get a handle on how fast/slow I was running.

**A quick reminder that I spent the whole summer burned out on calculating time, distance, splits, incline, whatever. I ran gadget free for months and thought all was well***

WELL. After the recovery period was over I set out to run for real- I wanted to run a few miles, one for warm up then a few closer to race pace.

I must say that I DO NOT appriciate the brutal honesty of Miss Nike. "ONE MILE, NINE MINUTES FORTY SEVEN SECONDS" she informed me. "OH, OK NBD" said I. "That was my "warm up."

Mile two was my chance to kick it up a notch and so I did. I was feeling good, rested, the foot wasn't bugging me, it was a beautiful day and blah de fricking blah. "TWO MILES" Said Miss Nike... "EIGHTEEN MINUTES, FORTY SECONDS."

Oh, hold the fricking phone....

And now we all know WHY I did NOT PR at said September race. HAH! Apparently, devoid of a watch, a treadmill, and a concience my "fast" miles were coming in closer to what I exoect my "warm up" miles to look like. I was a touch horrified but I also react well to brutal honesty after my initial reaction of throwing my iphone to the ground and stomping it. (just kidding, I love my iphone and it is not its fault that I am lazy!)

As I look towards a couple of fall 5K's I am now aware that I am in desperate need of some mile repeats in order to kick my game up a notch. Only time will tell if I have the motivation to make that happen...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The final countdown. Until my B-Day, that is.

It is good that I can admit that I am a bad blogger. There are no other words for it, I am not "fair" or "poor" I am quite simply, BAD.
My time has been remarkably limited and as I always say (really?) if I have spare time and can either run or blog I'm going to run.

To make up for it, I plan to conduct my own version of the November daily blogging thing which many of you seem so fond of. ONE WEEK. That's all I can manage and I might only get 3 words in! What the hell, it's a start and should get me caught up. The whole thing will reach a climactic end on the biggest day of the YEAR- my Birthday. Whoot!

I leave you now, with horse pics from the end of the year. I plan to attempt to devote my next 6 (count 'em) posts to RUNNING so I thought I'd squeeze these suckers in today.

I LOVE this pic! With my BEST horse friend after we snagged 1st and 2nd at Regionals!

My Little guy- if he isn't just the cutest damn thing!