Monday, March 30, 2015

Week 14 and Marathon Fears

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Time Trial (3.5 miles total)
Wednesday: None
Thursday: 3 miles
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 14 miles
Sunday: 90 min sweet surrender yoga

This week has been very hard for me. I'm starting to realize that I'm not where I wanted to be at this point in my training.  It is far too easy for me right now to get down on myself when after 10 miles, I feel like I'm dying. I have a 20 mile run next week and the farthest I've gone at one time is 16. I feel like my training has gotten very half-hearted. To be honest, at the end of my long (14) run this week, I was ready to switch to the half marathon and just say that I was not made to run 26.2 miles at one time.

However, talking with my trainer and reading some blogs of people who are training for Boston (a week before mine) I realize we are all in the same place. These are totally normal feelings, especially because I've never run a full marathon before. I need so somehow figure out how to put my positive hat on and push through. After this race, I give myself permission to never run a full marathon again, but right now, I need to be focused on 26.2.

As I was pondering these things (way more than I probably should) one word came to mind: steady. I need to figure out how to steady my mind, my muscles, and my nerves and just settle in. I've done the vast majority of my training and now I need to hold steady. And while you are reading my random ponderings, I'll keep going on this stream of consciousness. When I think of "steady" the first image that pops into my head is my Grandpa Stadick. He died when I was 9, but most of what I remember about hims was his steadiness. So I'm going to think of him during this next week while I'm running more than the normal person should. This week is for Grandpa Stadick and his steadiness.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Week 13 and 3 Event Week!

Here's the recap y'all are holding your breath for...

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Speed Sessions (1x1600, 4x800, 4x400) each group was faster than the one before it! It was tough!
Wednesday: 4 miles
Thursday: 3 miles + 6 miles on bike + Cycle Hip Hop
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Predators Fangtastic 5k + 7 miles
Sunday: 8 miles

This week looked a little different than most for several reasons
1. I actually did run every day I was supposed to!
2. I split up my long 18 mile run between Saturday and Sunday (will explain in min)
3. Between my half marathon last Saturday and this Saturday, I participated in 3 running events!
             1. Rock N Roll DC Half
             2. Wilson Duathlon
             3. Predators Fangtastic 5k

So here's some explanation. Tuesday's speed session was tough! It was high mileage and very quick paces for me. So I made it through, but after the tough half marathon the weekend before, I was toast.
Wednesday I  tried to keep it fairly easy because I could tell I was just tired.
Thursday I got to participate in one my favorite events I've ever done! My cousins from Florida had an idea to organize a duathlon that anyone could participate in anywhere. (kinda like a virtual race). So I ran 2 miles, biked 6, and then ran 1 more. It was a lot harder than it seemed like it should have been, but like I said, I was already dead tired! Plus it was fun to know that family was doing it too!
Saturday I got to do another one of my favorite races. The Predators Fangtastic 5k is one of my favorites because my husband does it with me! He's not really a runner so whenever I can get him to run with me it makes me happy!
(I would say my hair looks so bad because I just ran, but this is before the race. Whoops!)

So that was the first 3 miles of my long run. Went home and back out to the trail for what was supposed to be the rest of my 18 miler. However, I had an epiphany at about mile 6. I was having a great morning, I was having a great run. I was very happy at the 9 miles that I had completed. So I ran another mile. However, at that point it started to not feel as good and I was spiraling back into the "I can't run a marathon. There's no way that's going to happen" train of thought. So I called it a day! At this week in my training, I needed a good-feeling run a lot more than I needed the mileage. It was a great decision!
I went back out on Sunday to finish my long run with 8 more miles. 

I'm not going to say this training has been anywhere near easy. I'm not expecting it to get any easier from here on out. However, because I allowed myself to find joy in running this weekend, I remembered why I love running. I am going to push through these last few weeks and I am going to cross that finish line after 26.2 miles in just over a month. I will be dead. It will be one the hardest things I have ever done and will ever do. But it will be done and I will be better for it!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Rachel Runs DC and Week 12

Sorry about the delay in posting, I've needed some time to think before I wrote about last weekend. But first, week 12 marathon training

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Speed Work 6x400 at fast pace Splits: 2:13, 2:20, 2:20, 2:17, 2:20, 2:16 (nailed it!)
Wednesday: 4 miles
Thursday: Traveling
Friday: Walking/Biking the National Mall
Saturday: Rock N Roll DC Half Marathon
Sunday: Sittin in da car

So overall it was a pretty good training week. Obviously the traveling kind of got in the way, but it wasn't a bad thing.

Sooooo, for the race recap

Rock N' Roll DC Half Marathon 2015

We drove to DC on Thursday morning (and all day). It was a pleasant drive and we ended up getting there about 7pm. We stayed at the Residence Inn in Bethesda, MD and it was wonderful! It was two blocks away from the Metro so it was fairly easy to get wherever we needed to.
We went to the expo on Friday morning after a wonderful breakfast at the hotel. The expo was fantastic! Rock N' Roll really knows how to put together an expo. After picking up my packet, I headed over to Brooks Run Happy Island for some fun! First, I got my gait analyzed.

They pretty much confirmed what I already knew, I am a very neutral runner and the Brooks Ghost 7 are perfect for me! I also got to try on the Launch which I very much enjoyed and might be my next "lighter" shoe. 
We continued on to the rest of the expo. What runner doesn't get excited over this sight?
I ended up signing up for a half marathon in Nashville in November, the  inaugural Zooma Nashville Half Marathon! I also bought a magnet. Because that's what my family does.

After the expo, we toured DC. Brad had never been there so we did the typical stuff. 
At the Capitol
At the Washington Memorial

This was our best friend for the day. It made seeing all the monuments quicker and less walking. I would suggest it to anyone touring DC

After a very fun day of sightseeing, it was time for my race on Saturday morning.

We took the Metro downtown and it was very easy to get to the start. Unfortunately, it was very cold and windy and raining. Not gonna, lie it was kind of miserable at the start. But nevertheless, we got started. 
We ran by the Washington Memorial and shortly after we ran past Lincoln. After that it was mostly just neighborhoods. This was good in some ways, but in other ways I was looking forward to running past all the cool touristy stuff. Oh well.

Because I don't think you want to hear mile by miles how it went, I will sum up. I have learned that not every race will be my favorite. It was partly the weather, partly the course, partly my own mental stuff, partly the walking around the day before. But it just wasn't my day. I finished and I'm proud of that, but it was not great. My time was just fine and I finished. That's what I'm taking away from this half marathon. I've now completed 4 and I'm proud of that!

I'm going to continue to train and continue to work towards my 26.2. This is just a small little hill that I just have to get over and move on. It was a very fun trip to DC though! And I'm very much looking forward to my taper in three weeks :)

Monday, March 9, 2015

Marathon Training Week 11

Quick recap:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 3.5 miles of track workout
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 16 miles
Sunday: 90 minute Sweet Surrender Yoga class

This week was rough. On Tuesday I wasn't feeling well, but I paid for the track workouts so I went anyway. It was pouring rain and gross. On Wednesday, I still didn't feel well, so I took a day off. By Thursday I was feeling better, but we had a pretty major snowstorm (at least for TN) and I didn't feel safe running outside or driving to the gym for the treadmill. Saturday's run was really hard, but I'm proud that I did it. I had to dodge snow and ice for the first half of my run and by the end of it, I was running through so much water because it had melted.

I'm just not in it mentally right now. I've got a lot going on outside of running and I think it is making it really difficult to be mentally focused when I'm running. Everything going on is good, but it's a lot. Especially on my 16 miler, there was way too much time to get down on myself and then the run got really hard.

However, after all that negativity, I'm very excited for my race next weekend!

Image result for rock n roll dc half marathon course map

I'm hoping that running slightly less miles (13.1), plus running in one of my favorite cities will break me out of this funk. It looks like it could be rainy, but I think I can deal with that.
I will post tons of pictures and a recap next week. Wish me luck!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Marathon Training Week 10 and Big News!

Here's the summary:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Speed Session (3.5 miles)
Wednesday: 5 miles on the treadmill
Thursday: 3 miles on the treadmill and Cycle Hip Hop
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 15 (!) miles
Sunday: 90 minute sweet surrender yoga class

Saturday was my longest run ever! It was tough. I'm starting to learn why marathon training is hard. It really hurt and was mentally tough. But I did it, and I feel good now :) I'm feeling really solid because I'm getting in the mileage that I need to.

Now for the big news!

I am starting a new job this morning! I will be an administrative assistant for a real estate office. It's going to be much closer to home and has much more professional opportunities for me. However, because this blog is about my running, I'll just focus on how it will help that. It will help mostly because it is closer to home, the gym, and most of the trails I run. Because it's closer to home, I'm going to try to start running in the mornings. Because it's closer to the gym, I can still go to Cycle Hip Hop. Because it's closer to the trails, that means less treadmill time.

Needless to say, I'm a happy camper :) 16 miles for a long run next week. Keep me in your prayers :P

In two weeks, I'll be running my first half marathon of the year, the Rock N Roll USA in Washington, DC. Super excited for that!

Who else is running the Rock N Roll USA?