Monday, April 3, 2017

Week 13: The final big week! Dogs! Hills! Eagles! 'Murica!

March..... Don't let the door hit you on the way out! 


This completely sums it up
Confession time: I prefer training in horrible bogus March weather than boiling hot August weather. I might not have been warm, but I'd rather layer up than die a horrible heatstroke death. 
The never ending snowstorms, however.... They can bugger off. 

Last week was a BIG week in the training department.  A big week, at the end of several big weeks (as one would expect.) While this week didn't host my longest long run, there were several workouts that were very challenging. (possibly the MOST difficult of this cycle.) So, by the week's end I was pretty pooped . 

Bitch hill snow.. It has not changed much!
I ran the most difficult hill workout of the entire training cycle. It was my first run of the week, and my last day of dealing with the cold that I had picked up the previous week. I wasn't feeling my best but I got the run done, and I did not really suffer too much. 
So what makes this a challenging workout? I charge up and down the hills twice (about 4-6%, one hill is .75 mile and the shorter one is .45) While much of the elevation comes from that stretch of road, the remainder of the run would be called impossibly hilly by any self respecting flatlander. 
The total elevation of the run is about 750 feet. 

Feeling better, even after a tempo run
I ended up moving Friday's rest day to Wednesday to give myself a day to recover and shake off the remaining cold symptoms. 
The day off did the trick, and on Thursday I went out to run a challenging speed workout.
I did a total of 10 miles, 8 of which at what was once known as marathon pace... but is now just fast.. So, an average speed of 7:59 over very rolling terrain. It was one of those workouts that was both tough, and doable. It wasn't the hell of maintaining 5k pace but it was most certainly not easy. 

I did have an adventure during this run.... One of the neighbors has a Great Dane, a GIGANTIC beast of a creature, who is usually tucked in nicely behind her fence. 
As I ran past her home, I heard her husky bark oddly close to me... And there she was, out and on the move. 
I froze. I don't know this critter, but I know not to run from large dogs, as they will chase you down and then (at best) knock you over to "play" and straight up accidentally kill your ass!!! Fuck!!!
I shouted for a while, in an attempt to shoo her away/alert her owner, to no avail. I tried to stay calm, serene and confident. All the while looking at this dog who was shouting at me and was also at least 80 pounds bigger than I. 
She crept up within arms length from me and stood there, warily, barking and saying "you SHALL NOT PASSSSSSS!" 
I texted Eric to ask what he thought I should do! (when in doubt....) (he offered to come help)
After 5 minutes of being held hostage, her dad finally rescued me. 5 minutes is FOREVER.
I was like "ummm yeah, can you get your dog? because she is scary!"
Anyway, her name is Leisel and she is on the same shit list that Vader is on...

Friday I ran a total of 8 more, with about 30 minutes of speed play with a minute of "fastish" running and a minute of easy running. 

Then on Saturday.... We got a foot of snow. 

Cute, April... Well played you dumb ho bag. 
So WTF?? April came roaring in, all pissed off and angry and deposited a full 12" of heavy, wet snow onto the mud. LOVELY. 

I am lovely too. 
I had no intention of doing my long run in such a mess. Nope. No way. Not gonna take months of training and jeopardize it in slippery, disgusting conditions. 
So, to the treadmill I went. For 6 easy miles, which were actually rather enjoyable. 

I pulled off a decent final long run on Sunday, after a pretty long day at work. 
I made a very silly mistake pre run (I ate an apple, and that spells doom. Actually, it spells poop.) So, I had a minor amount of GI trouble early on, but it was brief. 
The whole run was really decent enough but had a few funny issues that kept me from getting into the "zone". 
First, I had eaten that apple, so......
Then, Vader chased me for a while. Jesus.. (today, he was tied! win!)
THEN, a solid 2 miles of my route was unplowed. While it wasn't dangerous it sure was slimy.
AND THEN, I saw a bald eagle in her (her?) nest and it was amazing! I had to stop to look!
After THAT, I saw my friend Gardner so we had a little chat.
WHEN SUDDENLY, I discovered I had lost my gloves and I had to retrace my route to locate them...
Anyway, it was a fine run. Nothing life changing, nothing horrible. Pretty tired legs. 
Sometimes my final long runs are just God Awful, sometimes they are fucking majestic. This was neither.   
Post long run snowbank sitting...
Upon my return home (and after showering, duh) I noticed that both Eric and I were looking pretty damn fancy. So pictures were taken. HAWT. 

So I did it!! I have made it to taper time and it was a good training cycle. They are all different, and this one was no exception, but I certainly put in the work. 
The marathon is in 2 weeks and we'll just let the chips fall where they will. Much depends on the weather, which is anyone's guess. 
I'm just looking forward to having a great day, running whatever race I have in my legs, and finishing strong and healthy. Because who wishes to finish sad, ruined and barfy, right!? 

Weekly stats: 
Miles run: 50
Longest run: 16.5
Other: TWO strength workouts. MUCH skill. 
Wildlife sightings: Fucking LEISEL..... And a bald eagle. 'murica
Low/High temps: 22/45 and a foot of snow, because why not?
How am I feeling? I felt great all week, and a bit tired on Sunday. 
Beer of the week: Well, this is where I dropped the ball!! I'll try to have 2 next week, haha. 

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