Thursday, January 31, 2013

Boston Prep 16 Miler.. Brought to you by Mr. Worldwide

This post had several possible titles.
-My first of several encounters with THE LAW (more on this later)
-The day that I took full advantage of the GI Bill, if you know what I mean... (more on THIS later)
-In the Malinowski household, there is ONE gingerale that is acceptable to consume.... (and if you don't agree, prepare to watch people smash wineglasses!!!) :-)
-Why... Just WHY????
It seems that in the end, I chose a semi normal title (more on Mr. Worldwide later)

Eric and I headed off to the Boston Prep 16 miler in Derry, NH this past Sunday with the plan to use it as a serious and legit test of our current fitness in regards to our Hyannis race goals. My goal was a 2:10, Eric's was a 2:22. We were able to sleep relatively late thanks to the wonderful hospitality of his Sister and Brother in law and we headed off semi-bright and early to Derry.
And almost immediately were pulled over for speeding. Oops. Got in the race way of thinking a bit early. Luckily, we were driving my car which was all up to date with its registration and what not. Eric was driving but managed to bat his eyes and sweet talk effectively enough to avoid a ticket so, Winning.
We arrived 90 minutes early which was perfect for our warm up plans. Oh, and it was a blazing 14 degrees with a steady wind of about 15 MPH with gusts to 30. FML. FML. Since I am practicing being positive in the face of disaster I tried to make the death on Mt Everest conditions my friends. It only kinda worked...

Gloves! Shirt! Generic race bib! YAY!

My pile of shit, Just the extras to keep this old lady warm-ish.

Wearing all the extras. Trying to look pumped. Failing..?

How I really felt, motha-f***ers!!

We got ready. We did normal things like eating all the honey graham bear things (what are those called?) and taking random blog pictures. Both of us felt a little nervous... but because we have ice cold water running thru our veins we played it off as cool. Obvs...

Poor Eric. This is not a very good picture. Blame me, I'm bad at photos.

Also, his scary face is not nearly as scary as mine.
He needs to work on that shit.

OK, onto the cold, harsh reality of the race...
 We ran a couple miles to warm up (headwind BOTH WAYS- I SWEAR!) Lined up and started right on time- and a good thing because it was NOT standing around weather. I wanted to maintain close to an 8:00 pace for the first half of the race and then see if I could bump it a little closer to 7:50's after the HILLS. I knew from past experience that the first mile is uphill and usually very congested so I was A-OK with  an 8:45 for that mile. The first couple miles felt pretty slow even though mile 2 was close to a 7:40 pace. After mile 2 the road opened up a little and I fell into a pretty kickass rhythm for quite a few miles. I managed to maintain a very consistent sub 8 pace- sometimes letting it creep toward my 1/2 pace which felt very comfortable and easily maintainable. My legs felt fantastic, and I was having happy feelings that all my hard work was paying off!

This was the first time that I have run a race without my Ipod (due to the fact that I lost mine a month ago and decided, essentially, to punish myself and not get a new one.) I have not missed it (much) during training and decided that it would be good to run quietly, really paying attention to how I was feeling, my pace, and try to isolate what to do when I got tired/grumpy. And you know what? What I learned is that I need my damn Ipod for long races. I got pretty damn bored of my own stupid head space. During this time I was thinking positive thoughts (Seriously Coach Kelsey, I WAS) and singing songs in my head. Except I SUCK at singing songs in my head apparently because I'd JUST get going with some rando Pitbull song (cue up the: I'm MISTER WORLDWIDE, I'M MISTER WORLDWIDE!!!) and I'd get sidetracked. Only to have the damn song restart moments later with (you guessed it) I'm MISTER EFFING WORLDWIDESo yeah. First purchase on Monday was a spiffy new Ipod. This also should explain the title of my post!
As expected, at mile 10-something the HILL of death showed up. As anyone who has ever run in Derry knows, the hill of DEATH is the Granddaddy of all those other hills on the course (of which there are so very, very many.) I run on hills all the time at home- I'm a very confident hill runner. BUT. This hill is in a league of his own. It kicked my ass this year, end of story. (except, sadly, it is not quite the end of the story yet.) At the top of the hill I seriously was going to hurl, desperately not wanting a repeat of puking in somebodies yard like I did while running Around The Lake I talked myself out of it and tried to put my game face back on. The last 3 miles felt anything but good as I attempted to ignore the havoc in my poor belly and just get the eff to the finish. The other horrible, horrible thing about the last couple miles was the WIND- it was whipping in my face at about 487 MPH and ruining my day. BOOO!!!
When I finally crossed the finish line I could have cared less that I PR'd (2:08:55) and I pretty much just sprinted straight for the porta potty, oh God... I decided to quit running forever. I hated everything. AND I was supposed to run 2 cool down miles! I ran (so. so. slowly) back to see where Eric was and found him very quickly (thank heavens- I literally could NOT run) When asked how he was he replied "UGH" which I understood. I walked back to the finish (the PAIN) and straight BACK to the porta potty. Lovely.... Found Eric who, as it turned out, had run a perfect race and crossed the finish line in 2:22:15. He is remarkably good at running an exact pace, something that I am a bit jealous of. I am also jealous that he can run an awesome race and not have to spend the rest of the day hunkered down in the bathroom weeping for his Mom (not that I do THAT, duh...)  We tried to eat food. I ran back to the bathroom... We decided to leave, and yeah, I ran to the bathroom. I felt a little better and thought that the worst was over until we were 2 seconds from Eric's sisters house and I started dry heaving like a BOSS. "Run inside to the bathroom" cried poor Eric. "NO WAY" I heaved "I'm not gonna puke on YOUR SISTER!!"Concerned that I was going to blow legit chunks he asked if I wanted to get out of the car "NO!!!!" I said "It is rude to puke in someones driveway!!!" I finally managed to yak up the Advil that I had taken and then I felt much better. It was a very pretty, sexy and feminine moment which reminded Eric what a lucky man he is. *sigh*

Anyway. Mega horrible GI issues aside my final thoughts were that it was a solid preview of how Hyannis should go. (minus the dry heaves of doom perhaps?) I don't feel that Derry is a particularly good race for building confidence, I seem to question my logic and reason post race on a yearly basis. However, I am very confident in my training plan and that is the most important thing.
I have a 20 miler scheduled for this coming weekend and am going to continue to experiment with various snacks to attempt to cut down on the drama of my dumbass belly. Not much time to figure it out at this point but I'm going to do what I can!
(and on a side note. I might not have given up running but I promise that I will NEVER, EVER run that race even ONE second faster. EVER.)

Friday, January 25, 2013

In which we long to be normal humans....

I'm sure that everyone with ears has heard the news. It is COLD outside! Call me a wimp if you must but in my little world there must be actual degrees in order for me to run outside. This whole zero degrees thing with serious windchill spells certain death.
So on days like this, to the padded cell in the basement Eric and I go.
It's like out home away from home (well. at home.) Sometimes we go down there to foam roll and end up lying inexplicably on the floor with our legs up the wall having lengthy conversations. That would (perhaps) be better had on the couch or similar? Hmmmmm.
Really though, most of our time in the basement is spent working out.
That's actually Eric and my Sister.
Having fun with Sufferfest. UGH.

The two of us were down there the other day, suffering and sweating. I had been running for over an hour and had barely surfaced from the place I go in my head when things get tough (we call this mental training, right?) Eric had been leaping around doing burpees and whatnot for a lengthy period of time and was, at that moment, going flat out crazy fast on his bike. Total agony.
Things were quiet except for obvious sounds of human pain and suffering..
When out of the blue Eric said "I just.... Want a beer..."
This is normally something I say, Eric is all virtuous and usually says "I want a protein shake, some Gatorade and a side of green leafy veg thank you (and some oreos..)"
I looked at the TV and saw these guys, which explains a lot.

The boys from the League! Love them.
They are in the running to be our normal friends!

I agreed that I too wished for nothing more than to leap headfirst into a veritable VAT of beer. ASAP. It sounded like the most brilliant thing ever. EVER!
This turned into a conversation about how we wished to, instead of working out ALL THE TIME,  make normal friends and go out to watch sports and drink beer (and eat all the popcorn and possibly all the cheese.) We need to start taking applications for these friends because currently ALL our friends are either training for some huge race or pregnant. No good for having normal human outings with AT ALL!!!
Of course, this discussion eventually turned to the cold hard facts. I had the chance last summer to experience 3 weeks of "normal human life" when I was recovering from my shin shit, post marathon. All I did was eat ice cream twice a day and wish to run. (fail) After Eric's Ironman our biggest normal human accomplishment was rediscovering our talent to split a bottle of wine without getting hammered. Impressive stuff, clearly! Evidently the moral of the story is that, as much as in the confines of the basement we wish for a normal human existence, we would both fail miserably at such a thing. (well. if my failing I actually mean WINNING at ice cream and wine consumption that is!)
One month until Hyannis. Then we can both decompress for about a week, slosh around in barrels of beer and I can break out all things lactose. Sadly, until then we are both going to be the worst weekend party friends EVER... (I mean BEST! Who doesn't want to hang out with two people whose weekends revolve around long runs, prepping for long runs and recovering from damn long runs... Right?)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Oh Gosh.. It's RACE WEEK!!!!

Well, well. Looks like it is time to tackle the Infamous Boston Prep 16 miler.
All together now: "UGHHHHHHHH!!!!!"
Nothing like narrow single track sprinting on icy roads and a monster hill at mile 11 to really put a spring in your step, right? (FYI to the naysayers out there, yes this race is run on a road. add a little snow- or a lot- and an absolute clusterfudge of humans and yes, it becomes single-file-run-for-your-life excitement!)

You son of a bitch...

Actually, my feelings about this race are not that negative. I'm rather looking forward to racing again, it feels like it's been a dog's age... It is also the first race of 2013 for me, which is mega exciting!
I am also using this as a legit training run and looking to get a few extra miles in for good measure (per Coach Kelsey's orders, of course!)
I hope to be able to sneak in some mileage at Marathon pace or better. Remembering the legit bottleneck for the first few miles of last years race leads me to believe that I'm in for a slow start.
I'm ok with starting slow, easing into Marathon pace until mile 11 (mountain) then cranking thru the last 5K or so like I'm on steroids and heading for an Oprah confessional. I also want to practice race nutrition and all that boring silly crap that I'd usually just overlook. I am a changed woman, very responsible and attentive to my own needs. *ahem*
I also hope to look fabulous throughout, per the norm.


Anyway. This weeks workouts have been scheduled as kind of a mini taper which I am quite enjoying. 2 days off! No long run Friday! I plan to enjoy it while I can since I imagine it will be all work and no fun next week....

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Horrible Long Run! UGH!

Here in New England it is COLD. And we are all complaining.
Nothing new really. It's either too hot, too cold, too buggy, too many tourists. You get the idea!

Today's high temp! Lovely...

Let's backtrack to last week.
I swear, every one of my workouts was amazing. I felt like I was kicking ass and taking names! And luckily, most of the days were beautiful, lovely, even kind of warm days.
And then... There was my long run day. I anticipated doing 20, planned all day for it, only flinched a little when the high temp was 11 with 25 MPH wind, and went for it.
Worst attempt at a long run EVER. This answers the age old question of what is worse: long runs when it is 95 or long runs when it is 11? I hate running when it is 95- I CAN NOT run when it is 11.
When, at mile 12.5 I discovered that my handheld had frozen solid (as well as my hands- in gloves with hand warmers) I gave up and called for help. Pitiful...
OMG. I am the luckiest girl alive!!!!

I snuck in another mile and a half before I met him on the road (I had ducked into a warm little store to text- and seriously considered staying in there. possibly drinking beers.) I was so cold and exhausted that it was absurd. I felt like I had run a full marathon (my winter clothing and extra gear, as light as it is, weighs in at 5.2 pounds. Tiring to lug around, I tell ya.) I was supposd to foam roll and whatnot but I was whipped and exhausted (and a little grumpy) so I sat on the couch with 3 labradors, one attractive Ironman, 6 blankets, a wedge of Brie, a bottle of whiskey and a big bar of chocolate. And eventually some veggies, as seen below. Then I felt better.

My sister came over and we ate a healthy dinner.

I don't get upset about one shit long run- hell, before Around The Lake I'd say that 80% of my long runs were horrendous.

I suppose the silver lining is that my other workouts last week were rock solid. My "recovery" run the next day had me clocking an 8:02 average and I barely broke a sweat (but it was in the mid 30's and I lost the 5 pounds of extraneous crap...) I ran 8 the following day, over hills, super easy and it was still at an 8:20 pace. So if nothing else, I'm getting back to the point of having 8:20's feel easy instead of barely being able to keep it under 9's (ugh!)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Regarding pickles and cinnamon toast.

I am now in my third cycle of Marathon Training. WHY??? WHY???!!
Oh right. Because I am badass. Duh.
Each and every time I start logging higher than average mileage I notice that I have strange cravings for odd foods. (odd for me, anyway.) People commonly ask if I am preggers, which I most certainly am not. I just want all the strange foods ALL THE TIME. NOMNOM!
For example. For breakfast today I had sensible oatmeal, followed closely by pickles and cinnamon toast. That really is not right... But it really was so delicious.
I would like someone knowledgeable in nutrition to analyse the following data and explain it to me.
And "Sara, you eat all the strange foods because you are strange..." Is just not helping.
So. During Marathon training cycle #1 I was running high mileage during June and July. Yuck, it was very hot. Lots of sweating!
My top 3 food cravings were:
-Pickles. Dill, obvs.
-Vitamin Water- the XXX kind ONLY (btw, I tried to consume one of those the other day and was grossed out. I had to rinse my tongue under the faucet I was so disgusted...)
I ate an ass ton of grapefruit.
Like, a dozen a week. WTF?

Marathon Training Cycle number TWO rolled around during September and October and (as previously mentioned) was quite light on the miles and stress in comparison to round one. After running Around The Lake I have had ZERO grapefruit and ZERO vitamin water, so that was a one shot deal. I still ate my fair share of pickles but my cravings seemed to shift slightly.
Pre-MDI my top 3 food cravings were perfectly sensible. *ahem*
-Twizzlers. So many bags of them. I'm embarrassed.
-Orange veggies. As a rule, my least favorite thing. However, I could not stop stuffing squash, sweet potato and carrots into my face at a high rate of speed. Yuck. I'm so over that.

I ate Kale in EVERYTHING.
Cups and cups a week. I might have turned into a kale plant.

So delicious.
So red and waxy.

Here I are now, in the dead of winter preparing like a teeny tiny superhero for Marathon number THREE.
Let it be known that I still am consuming upsetting quantities of kale, spinach, chard, whatever. I do not discriminate against any green leafy OMG delicious veggie.
At this juncture my top 3 wants are:
-Brussels sprouts!!! (I used to HATE them, now I LOVE them.)
-Twizzlers. I had to stop buying them it became so bad.... What the hell is wrong with me?
-Ginger ale. Out of everything this makes the least sense. I have strong feelings of dislike towards soda and have not consumed any in close to 10 years, I bet. After every long/challenging run it is ALL I WANT. So I drink it ALL. And IT. IS. AMAZING!
(And on off days I add a little bourbon, thank you very much.)

Get in my belly! I have a relationship with these little buggers...

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. Ginger ale. I love your face.

I think at this point it should be easy for all of you out there to understand my confusion. High mileage seems to give me cravings to eat things I would never want to consume otherwise! Please help a girl out and explain to me the logic behind this nutritional mess, I would most appreciate it!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A quick look back....

It was a heatwave yesterday. Like, 52 degrees.
I had some mile repeats to tackle so I dressed accordingly. And AWESOMELY!!!!

Starting to think about the upcoming races. The Derry 16 miler is in less than 2 weeks. I expect that will be my "long" run for the week and I really enjoy a long run that maxes out at 16, not gonna lie.
Just the thought of 16 being an easy long got me to thinking.
1 year ago I had NEVER EVER run farther than 13.1. And I was mostly fine with that. Marathons were not legitimately on my crazy person radar yet.
And THEN I started thinking that two years ago I had NEVER EVER run farther than 6.2 miles. And I was A-OK with that too! (that might be a fib, as I was more or less in half marathon training.)
But really, the point of this rambling is that 3 years ago I did not run. At all. Not a single step ever.
I feel like I have made progress. (towards insanity, gahd...)
It is so strange that I went from being a nice normal lady to someone who sees no problems with running 40 plus miles a week, every week like it is no big deal. And who also sees no issue with the fact that every Friday afternoon/evening of my life is taken up by long runs of doom. Honestly, if anyone had told me 3 years ago that I'd be doing THIS I would have laughed them right out of the room. Oh well. I'm awesome :-) (and seriously, if I can do it so can 99% of you out there!) (well. not if you want to have any semblance of a "normal" life but who wants that?)

Monday, January 14, 2013

My week of training....

Any post that features me looking badass and tough is clearly going for the win.

                                                 Don't mess, I'll get you with my neon.

I was a blogging slacker last week because of two big important reasons. ONE: Things were going REALLY well and I didn't want to jinx mah shiz.
TWO: Do you all REALLY want to hear daily details? Maybe. I am pretty amazing and exciting after all. And fashionable to boot.
15 miles was my long run last week with 3 of the miles at a sub 8 pace. Effing brutal. But fine.
The weekend was normal stuff, easy Saturday run, 7 mile Sunday with striders. Both good.
I started the week with a progressive tempo run. It was fine in the way that pain and agony are fine.
Then I had a day off.
Then I want to spin, which was a legit sweaty mess this week. Good stuff.
The day after that I had an easy 5 which was good because my legs were junk.
On Friday I pounded out 18, at an 8:45 pace and felt just fine about it.
Happily, Saturday was an off day!
Sunday was an easy hour of easy running. Gotta love easy anything... That's what she said? However. This run was actually a strugglebus. My legs felt junky from their day off post long run and my belly felt just awful from an ill advised slice of pizza. So dumb. It was also absurdly foggy- foggy enough to soak me thru and to make my eyelashes weigh 15 pounds each. Gross.

Anywhoo. At this point, nightmares aside, I'm still feeling good. I'm really practicing my happy-mental-marathon place (not to be confused with the state that most marathoners are typically in FYI) Remembering back to MDI I firmly believe that it felt like an easy marathon because I told myself 14,897 times that it was going to be one! So Hyannis, you are going to be an easy marathon, my legs are going to be turbo charged rock stars, and I am going to make you my best friend. So there...

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Marathon Nightmares!!!!

I awoke on Friday morning terribly upset because I had a dreadful marathon nightmare!!! I firmly believe that it is just too early for that kind of absurdity. Seriously marathon nightmares- can't you have the decency to wait until I'm tapering??

OK so my dream started out at mile 20 (Of Hyannis) when I looked at my watch only to discover that I was significantly- I mean significantly- ahead of my goal pace. Needless to say I was delighted and amazed by my obvious physical prowess.

Then things took a turn for the worse.

                                        Because I saw this little bump. UM? Flat course???

I am a chronic hill runner so I did not let this small change of plans rattle me. Up I went. The problem? Once I was at the top there was nowhere else to go. Nowhere...I was forced to wait a long time for a Gondola. It wasn't quite as awesome as this one. I climbed in and zipped around a few bends in a very Disney ride sort of way and was deposited off in the middle of the woods. Huh.

Just a normal day at the Marathon.
I hate heights. This would never work out for me..

I disembarked from the Gondola to find that, not shockingly, my legs were starting to cramp up. I tried to ease back into running and felt like my legs weighed 500 pounds each and were glued to the road. Then things got worse. Out of the blue, Eric's big tall friend Ben caught up to be and passed me! On a side note, as bad as the dream had been to this point this was the turning point for me into legit nightmare. This is a really random thing to have happen too, as I have only met Ben one time.

This is Big Tall Ben.
He's like 7'5" no kidding.
He is going to be running Hyannis and I'm wondering if I should be scared!
I was just horrified that Big Tall Ben was going to beat me. It really ruffled my feathers so I tried to get my huge 500 pound legs to run. They really, really didn't want to but I got going at a shuffle. A slow, laborious, nightmarish shuffle of doom.
As I came into the last 3 miles I remembered that they had to be run a few times around a city. A confusing city with no volunteers to point the way and no signs. No help at all. CRAP!

I was suspicious that it was rather like the Financial District.
It was worse in my dream though...

I tried and failed to find my way. I sat on the curb because my gigantic lead filled legs just couldn't keep running, and I waited for another runner to go by and lead the way. Someone finally did and I followed them for miles before I realized that it was a recreational runner off for a Sunday jog. UGH!!! I finally crossed the finish line, in 3:37:00 which was amazing considering my debacle but utterly disapointing especially considering that at mile 20 I was running for like, a 3:03:00!

I walked around to locate Eric and found him drinking beer and shopping in a horse tack store with Big Tall Ben. This struck me as wrong on many levels. He had also beaten me, and beaten me so soundly that I had never even seen him out on the course. Again, this struck me as wrong.

I was honestly a bit upset by this dream! It took me the whole day to shake it off and I thought it probably meant that I was going to have a terrible, terrible long run! (I did not.) 

I am very hopeful that this is it for the Marathon nightmares and that they do not become a trend around here.  They are exhausting and ridiculous and insulting. 

Monday, January 7, 2013

49 Days until Hyannis...

I was secretly hoping that this was going to be a 50 day countdown... Oh well, 49 has a nice menacing ring to it!
Clearly at this point those of us running Hyannis are right in the midst of our training plans. What that entails is running, getting ready to run, recovering from running, thinking about running, eating ALL the foods, doing TONS of laundry (or just leaving it for later) and being TERRIBLE at going out socially. Our social lives are remarkable failures right now because my long runs are on Friday and Eric's are on Sunday. Luckily, neither of us long for the crazy bar hopping, up until 1AM lifestyle.
I look like this 98% of the time. SEXY.
So how am I feeling with 49 days to go? Solid. I don't want to jinx myself so I'm going to shut up asap. I still think that this training cycle has the potential to fill in all those jerky holes in my basic training and fitness that seem to sneak up on me. With another month of serious training before backing off pre race I'm feeling pretty darn good!  (well. who knows what Coach Kelsey has in store for me... I could be cranking out high mileage up until race day!)  
Here's Eric after his 20 miler yesterday.
He killed it! And, henceforth, was exhausted...

I don't think I can speak for Eric as to how he feels during this semi final countdown. From my vantage point he seems really good- he's chronically un-injured (the bastard!) he rarely had horrible GI problems mid run (LUCKY) and he has been cranking out much longer long runs that I have (better you than me!)  I have no doubt that he is going to finish his race next month looking at least as good as in the above sexy photo!
I've been having a good number of decent to very good runs lately. In my head I'm saving them up for when (or if) I feel like a bucket of assholes in a few weeks. I know that pre-Around The Lake I was feeling like crap before my taper. Before MDI I felt just fine though, and THAT is how I plan to go about attacking the next 49 days. Ain't NOBODY got time for an angsty runner!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Recap: My first month of having a Coach

It's been just over a month since I started working with Coach Kelsey and so far I'm really pleased.
It is, however, WINTER. I hope that we don't have too many more days that force me to be on the dreadmill...

Winter. Yuck.

So what have I noticed during the past month?
The first, and probably most obvious thing is that I am completely free from devising my own training plan. I could not be more pleased about this and honestly think that if this was the ONLY benefit it would be well worth the money! My self inflicted training plans are never ideal, as they mostly involve running about 8 miles, at an 8:20 pace, every day of my life. Hmmmm.
The second, and more important thing is that she is there to put a firm stop to my shenanigans... Run two hours on a very, very painful ankle? NO
Run 29 miles in 2 days to make it to 1600 for the year? NO!!!!
The third thing I most certainly notice is that the miles are getting back to where I like to see them- in the general range of 8:30's, which feels more like a normal effort now and less of a disgusting struggle. (Post MDI, being sick, etc I was having a hard time!) Also, things are feeling better after a month that was just over 100 miles. Definitely not a lot of mileage for me. I feel like my workouts are less heavy on the miles and more focused on the productivity. As previously mentioned I have also been doing core work at least 1x a week and an hour of spin weekly. This is a first for me- cross training has NEVER been my strong point! Most of my workouts involve changes of pace, which mixes things up for my legs that enjoy staying in the 8:30 range always, for every run...
I had a couple of minor stumbling blocks during December. I "missed" 2 long runs- one due to my iffy Achilles and the other was a scheduled skip on a day when I got a wisdom tooth extracted (ouch). With those exceptions I tried to be very faithful to the plan, I don't pay somebody to help me and then scamper around doing whatever I want!!
So December racked up 103 miles, 3 spin sessions, 5 core workouts and a long slushy 13 miler as my longest run. Pretty decent stuff. I imagine that January is going to raise the bar on the intensity level as Hyannis looms on the horizon. My logical goals for this month are to stay healthy, work hard on my nutrition plan (always mission impossible around here) start eating like an athlete again and not like a 13 year old boy, and to get in every one of my long runs.
So that is where I'm at for the time being. Feeling pretty good about things and very glad to have some excellent help pushing me along the way!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

How to display your prizes and merch!!

Once upon a time Eric pretty much won an Ironman and promptly threw his prizes and merch into a shoebox under his bed. FAIL!!!! Along came ME and because a: I'm fabulous b: prize abuse is not tolerated in my house and c: my Dad is a pro furniture builder, I solved this problem just in time for Christmas.
Now THAT is more like it!

And then.... I got jealous. My FEI horse finally won a Championship- If I had a dollar for very time that horse has been 2nd I have a lot of dollars. Anyway, he rocked it out this year and at 17 years old brought home the bacon. Bless his little fickle chestnut heart... Clearly, I wanted to hang his official victory photos and ribbon on my wall, dammit!!

This is mine. So snazzy. So pretty. So big!!!

I can't wait to collect my sweet Boston merch and bribe (ummm, or pay) my Dad to make me another sweet pimpin' shadowbox. YOU GUYS, YOU NEED TO GET ONE!!!
I wish I had one for every medal and pretty ribbon that I've ever won, but I don't have enough wall space (oh yes, I'm THAT awesome. *ahem*)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Epic 2013 Race Schedule!

Now that 2013 if officially here it's time to talk about ALL THE FUN THINGS that are in the plans!!
After running more races that was good for me in 2012 I fully plan on more of the same for this year. Well.... Maybe not quite.
The awesome thing about 2013 is the number of new adventures that are already in the plans. I'm excited. Big surprise there.
Here are the "big" races that I have on the schedule so far. Boston is noticeably missing, only because I have already overtalked it into the ground, and plan to do so as it draws closer. There are also some other random races that haven't made the cut for today's list because they are just too damn boring. :-)
So here are a few of the most adventurous races that are officially on the to do list!
This Monster is next on the agenda.
It's going to be a Hyannis training run for both Eric and me and I don't expect to enjoy it- HAH!!!

This is my "A" Race.
Boston is supposed to be my FUN race dammit! FUN! MEH!
So this is where the smack is going to get laid. BOOM! (trash talk..)

In order to keep things interesting this is the post Boston destination.
I'm seriously excited for this because nothing says fun like an Ultra Relay!

Calm down, I AM NOT doing a Tri. That would be ridiculous.
(And I am known for my good choices.)
Eric, Kate and I have formed a Half Ironman Relay Team.
ERMAHGRD. We could not be more pumped.
There will definitely be a LOT of blog chatter about our training escapades for THIS one.
It's already a Sufferfest in my basement. Quite a party.

Looks like it is going to be a busy winter and Spring indeed. I'm REALLY looking forward to the new experiences! Last year was a great year for trying all kinds of crazy new things and this year is taking it to a whole new level of absurdity. Can't wait!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Seriously Badass 2012 Recap!

Happy New Years, kids!
No beginning of the year race for me, and a good thing too since I ate all the foods and drank all the wine last night.
I like to wait for the beginning of the New Year to do my last years recap. Better late than never I suppose? (I'm lazy.)
Our nice friends/family gave us some fun ornaments which I really, really like and plan to use year round. You know you've had a bang up athletic season when you can have a legit ornament to commemorate your accomplishments.
Here they are:

Only the ones on the left are mine.
I'm only awesome at running.... Which is the only thing that counts anyway! Heehee..

What did I do in 2012?  
Total Miles: 1,587.88 (I WILL do 1600 next year!)
I had NO mileage goal in mind for 2012. I will say that this is at least twice as many miles as I ran in 2011 if not more. Probably more.

Total Races: TWENTY FIVE WTF????

Total pairs of shoes that I wore out: 3, with another pair well on its way...
Races:  (yes, I PR'd in every distance this year. ughhhhhhh)
5K: 10... I think.... We'll call it 10 and be ok with that.
PR: 19:59 (Tri for a Cure 5K)
Merch: 3 AG wins and 1 overall female win. Winning, winning galore blah blah.
I had something insane like 5 consecutive 5K PR's this year before nailing the sub 20 and retiring the 5K distance from things I care about. I don't love the 5K and I'm never going to be fast enough to really dominate!
10K: 3
PR: 43:43 (Cohasset Rotary 10K)
 This might never, ever happen again unless I'm actually training for a 10K. As unlikely as that is eventually I might get sick of marathon training and need a new fun challenge (I just misspelled hellacious horrible idea, didn't I??) My 2nd best finish this year was 44:49 which (for whatever retardo reason) felt MUCH easier. Go figure.
Merch: 2 3rd place AG finishes
4 Miler: 1
PR: 26:53 (Bridgton 4 on the 4th)
Merch: 4th place woman
I am fine with this being my 4 mile PR forever. I owed this course a solid ass kicking and I delivered.

10 Miler: 1
This was my first 10 miler...1:15:11
That can be another life long PR for all I care.

Half Marathons: 6
PR: 1:36:40 (at Great Bay Half)
Merch: 3rd AG at GBH, 4th AG at the AWH, 4th female at the Indoor Half
I smashed my Half PR by something silly like 9 minutes. I don't have a lot of Half's planned for 2013 which makes me sad- it's my favorite distance! I love Half's because it's a legit workout without taking up your whole day with running. Training for a half is easy (relatively speaking!) You are usually done running a half by lunch, which is important. I plan to run a Half faster someday, but probably not in 2013.

16 Miler: 1 (because who runs a 16 mile race...??)
Never had done one.. 2:09:58
I am running this again but don't expect to PR. No need to.

25K Trail Race Of Stupidity: 1
Another 1st time... 2:07:22
I absolutely refuse to ever, ever run this even one second faster.

Marathon: 2
PR: 3:34:14
Merch: AG WIN at MDI. Let's not talk about it as I'm still sad that I didn't pick up the award. I'm almost over it, I swear....
In my head I have zero plans to run this faster but that is a lie. Unless I want to spend my life BQing by the very smallest of margins then a 2013 PR seems likely. It will be a one second PR though, I don't really want to hurry that much faster because it hurts!!!
That is it, unless I forgot something. I'm exhausted just from reading that list!
Tomorrows post is going to be a good one!!! I'm going to let you guys in on all the big plans for 2013- I'm pretty excited for a new year of training and racing (and eating all the foods and drinking all the beers, duh!) So stay tuned...