I haven’t really stuck to my training plan this week. I’m feeling a bit burnt out. My legs are tired and heavy and I’m not myself. Every day I’ve gotten home from work this week looks a lot like this:
I don’t have the willpower to get out and run. (It doesn’t help that my face feels like it’s about to explode with allergy-related sinus pressure.) *shakes fist at pollen and dust and all things that make me sneezy/itchy/runny/watery*
This seems kind of problematic given the fact that I need to go run 14 miles this weekend. I was so excited about this run on Sunday, and I will still do it, but I’m just not feeling these shorter runs during the week. I know I should force myself to go out and run, but instead I allow myself to indulge in lazy, loungefests on the couch.
Anybody else feel mid-training cycle burnout? What do you do to get yourself back in the game?
Lately I’ve been making a more concerted effort to cook. And not just cook, but to cook the things sitting in my cupboards. Sometimes it’s hard to cobble things together. Living on my own has resulted in my eating less meat than I used to,* and if I buy a package of chicken breast, I feel like I’m eating chicken for 2 weeks straight. Tonight’s dinner was an example of how a wonderful little meal can come together from a random assortment of things…
Quesadilla on whole grain tortilla (pepper jack cheese and chopped green pepper) with salsa and black beans and rice. It is delicious and there’s a lot left for my lunch tomorrow. Win-win!
*The reduction in my meat consumption is kind of an accident and happened gradually. I still love and occasionally crave a steak or a juicy hamburger, but I’m definitely ok eating meat-free meals more often.
I feel surprisingly great today after this weekend’s 12 miler. I wasn’t sore at all yesterday and though my legs feel a little tired today, I can barely tell I ran so far just a few days ago. This weekend will mark a new milestone (heh) for me… I will run 14 miles, which is, to date, the furthest I’ve ever run.
I’m beginning to get excited and nervous about tackling this new distance, as it will really serve as a gauge for my preparedness for the 25k. (If I can run 14 miles, I can definitely run 15.5.) I mapped out my run just to give myself an idea of possible routes. I’ll probably end up doing the same 2 loops of Central Park as this past weekend with an additional lap around the lower loop to bring me to 14 miles.
While Central Park is beautiful I’m going to need to find new running routes to avoid Central Park fatigue and boredom when I train for the NYC Marathon. For now it’s a good place to get my miles in because it incorporates hills into my runs. There are a few hills in the River Bank Run, but I will be well-prepared for them after tackling Harlem Hill week in and week out (sometimes multiple times). (It might also be good to get out of Central Park to avoid injury from spending too much time running on cambered roads.) Do any New York runners have a favorite place to run outside of Central Park while getting long runs in?
It was a gorgeous morning in NYC. Rebecca and I had planned on heading out for our scheduled 12 miles at 9:30 this morning, but I remembered that the Scotland Run was happening this morning so I asked if we could push it back to 10:00 to avoid massive crowds. (That ended up being a really good idea.)
It was perfect for running today. A bit windy for my taste, but I would definitely take this kind of weather for the 25k on May 12. We set out for 2 laps of Central Park which meant we had two separate encounters with Cat Hill and Harlem Hill. The first time up, Harlem Hill wasn’t so bad, but on the second pass my quads were on fire and my knee felt a bit tender. I was surprised by how quickly the first lap went by. Reb and I were trying to maintain a slower pace than our last long run. I’ve tended to go out pretty fast lately and I need to be sure to ease into runs so as not to run myself ragged.
I’m pretty sore now. I will probably spend the rest of the evening icing and stretching. (And eating, because I turn into a bottomless pit after long runs.)
Also, with each long run and the rapidly approaching marathon training season, nutrition on runs has become more of a focus for me. I don’t do Gu or Gu-like products well… The consistency doesn’t agree with my strange food texture quirks. I found that I do really like the Clif Shot Bloks though. (Thank you Moxy for saving my life during Grete’s Great Gallop with the gift of Black Cherry Shot Bloks…) This morning I stopped into New York Running Company at the Time Warner Center to pick up a few sleeves of Shot Bloks. I used the orange flavor today and actually really liked them and I think they will be my go-to for a while. Anybody have other flavor recommendations?
Central Park was packed tonight! There were huge running groups everywhere. It was awesome to see so many people out enjoying the weather and moving their bodies.
Sunday was a rest day and I didn’t run last night for no real reason in particular, so after two days without running I was really happy to put my shoes on and head downtown to Columbus Circle. I did my usual 3 clockwise laps of the lower loop with a pretty quick pace.
The run was great, but I’m realizing that the blisters I’ve been plagued with are more of a problem than I originally thought. As long as I’ve been running I’ve gotten blisters on my right arch. I have double layer socks that work wonders, but I’m still susceptible to blisters on long runs. I currently have 3 blisters of various “ages” on my foot. One is currently a callus, but after my long run this weekend, a new blister has formed underneath it. (I’m holding out hope that the rest of them just callus over as well…)
I was fine for the first 3-3.5 miles, but it became a bit of a nagging pain as I continued. Now, I know my feet will never be pretty, but I would like to have healthy feet and I would like to be able to run without having to worry about hobbling as I near the end. Does anybody have thoughts or recommendations? Has anybody else had problems with blisters?
Since I did my long run yesterday, I have had today to do whatever. I. want. That generally consisted of sleeping in, cleaning up my apartment, and doing/folding the obscene amount of laundry I had accumulated. To top it all off, I had a lovely little Skype date with my friend Woo. What a fitting end to my day/beginning of my week.
I was just informed by one of my best friends that because she planned on being in Grand Rapids for the River Bank Run anyway, she thought she might as well run! She signed up for the 5k! I am so excited!
It’s still over a month away (41 days to be exact) but I am getting really excited about the River Bank Run. I apologize in advance because I will probably write about this race almost daily until I run it on May 12…
I think the most exciting thing for me right now is the fact that this will be the first time anyone in my family will be at a race of mine. All three of the half marathons I have run have been in New York (2 in NYC and 1 in the Hamptons) so making the weekend trip out hasn’t exactly been feasible. It will be incredible to have my parents waiting at the finish line and familiar faces posted up along the race route.
The thing that makes this different from other long races that I’ve run is that I’m comfortable with the distance. A 25k is a little more than a half marathon (duh), but I know it’s completely within my ability so it’s easier to be excited about all of the extra stuff that goes along with running a big race. Even though I’m returning to my old stomping grounds, it feels like a destination race, only I get to reap the benefits of home-cooked meals, familiar and comfortable accommodations, and friendly faces. Not to mention, I will be able to celebrate Mother’s Day with my momma, and my baby sister (not such a baby anymore - eeek!) will be going to her senior prom so I can see her all fancied up. (I got a sneak peek of the dress and it’s gorgeous!)
My mom is even excited for the race. She excitedly told me that much like the NYC Half I ran last March, the RBR will have the SMS runner tracking and GPS that she used to follow me as I wound my way through the streets of New York. She told me the other day that she was proud of my running prowess. It made me tear up a little bit. She and my dad have already carved out time in their busy schedules for the NYC Marathon in November. I’m so lucky to have such a supportive family! So excited to show them my little world of running!
After a crazed end to my workday, I’m feeling a lot like this:
I was going to come home and be all kinds of productive, but instead, I’m going to sit on the couch and watch the Red Wings and drink my oversized, crappy beer and love every. single. minute of it. Cheers!
Today’s Tunes on Repeat Brought To You By: The Civil Wars
I’m in about 5 kinds of love with this album. It has been the perfect soundtrack to my laid back Friday at work. (You can buy it on Amazon for $3.99!)
I’ve got this friend I don’t think you know her She sings a simple song It sounds a lot like his Oh I’ve got this friend Holding onto her heart Like it’s a little secret Like it’s all she’s got to give
Maui Jim Punchbowl Sunglasses: I got these sunglasses as a birthday gift from RB and they’ve already gotten a lot of mileage. (Thanks for looking out for my eyeballs RB!) From sunny New York days spent wandering the city to sunbathing by the pool or on the beach in Tampa, I’ve worn these babies almost every day. The lenses are amazing and I love the blue accent inside the frames!
Signing Up For Races: (See my previous post…) There’s something so satisfying about receiving a race registration confirmation email. Spring and summer are just not as exciting without a few Saturday and Sunday mornings devoted to running around with a few hundred — and in some cases, a few thousand — like-minded individuals.
Direct Flights to Grand Rapids: When I fly home I generally fly into Detroit because it’s less expensive, but I’ve been fortunate enough to find reasonably priced nonstop flights from New York into Grand Rapids. (Just booked flights for the River Bank Run, in fact!) This shaves a good 8 hours of drive time off for my parents and means I have 4 more hours to spend with family and friends in West Michigan.
I don’t have much on the race calendar this year, (a far cry from last year when I was constantly prepping for races to complete my NYRR 9+1) so I’m feeling a bit like a slacker.
I just registered to run the Inaugural Escape to The Palisades 5k. (They offer a half marathon, but because I’m running my 25k the following weekend, I decided against the half - obviously.) It should be the perfect solution to staving off the taper madness that I’m sure will plague me that week. It’s also a gorgeous course. I ran in the Palisades when I was training for the NYC Half last year with Team In Training and really enjoyed it.
It also sounds like I will get to enjoy the company of 94monkeys, who found the race, and Alice. (We’ve got a thing for running races outside of the city I guess… First Sleepy Hollow and now the Palisades!)
Tonight’s Speedy Last Half Mile Brought To You By:Crank It Up by David Guetta (feat. Akon)
Instead of listening to my usual running playlist, I opted to listen to the Dance Cardio station on Pandora for tonight’s run and I am so glad I did. This song came on at the very end of my run and made for a really fun, energetic last half mile. (It will also be a new favorite for pre-run dance parties.) This is definitely being added to my usual playlist.
…make sure to take your twice daily snort of Nasonex. As a severe seasonal allergy sufferer, you don’t have the luxury of just being able to forget things like that from the months of March-November.
Central Park was beautiful tonight. I didn’t even mind that I had to break out the long sleeves and cropped running tights again. So lovely.
Given how congested I was and how tight my chest felt, this run didn’t feel like a great run until I hit mile 4. And then I finished the run and looked at my watch. I did it again…
Tonight’s run was inexplicably fast. I really need to rein it in a bit. While I like seeing such low numbers when I plug my Garmin in, I know it’s not necessarily a good thing to run fast all the time. I think later this week I’ll run some hill repeats. (Can’t run too fast on hills.) The only thing I can point to that may have had something to do with my running like a mad woman was my afternoon spent perusing marathon training plans. I’ve got the NYC Marathon on my mind and I don’t care who knows it!
This morning I met one of my best friends Rebecca for a training run in Central Park. Being that we’re both West Michigan girls, we both signed up to run the Fifth Third River Bank Run which is celebrating its 35th anniversary this May. This is a race that I grew up hearing about, and before I was a serious semi-serious runner, it was the only race I had any interest in running. It’s a 25k (the largest 25k road race in the country) that winds its way through Grand Rapids and along the Grand River.
The race is a big deal in Grand Rapids and it’s not uncommon to overhear friends and neighbors checking in with one another on their training or clinics that they attended. Local businesses provide an unbelievable amount of support and charities turn out in droves to fundraise for their causes. I’m almost as excited to run this race as I am to run the NYC Marathon. The city is very proud of this race and running this race makes me feel like I’m finally a real Grand Rapidian (despite having spent most of my life there).
So, because Reb and I are running this race and because she had never run in Central Park before, we decided to get together to do our 10 miler this morning in Central Park. It was a bit chilly when we started but as we settled in it warmed up. The forecast and clouds overhead threatened rain, but it held off until about mile 8.
Earlier this week I tweaked my groin when I slipped on a stick on my way up Harlem Hill. (I’m such a klutz.) I’ve spent every day since icing and hoping that it would heal quickly. Though I was a little apprehensive when we started today, it didn’t bother me at all until after the hills and even then it was only for half a mile.
This was a really good run for me. It was so nice to run with Reb and chat. I hardly ever run with someone else, but I’ve found that my long runs are more bearable and go by much faster when I’ve got someone else right there with me. I feel like I have come into my own as a runner. I had myself convinced that the faster times I was posting were just a fluke, but I’m still managing to put together solid runs. I feel like I have learned when to rein myself in and when to let myself go to town.
Now, I’m going to make dinner, which will amount to roughly the 5th meal I’ve eaten today. Long runs make me ravenous!
1. My favorite color is green or purple. I have a hard time deciding on just one.
2. My home decor color palette includes a lot of earth tones. Beige with reds, browns and greens.
3. Other people always tell me I look good in the color green. I don’t know if it has something to do with my blonde hair or if it’s because it makes my normally gray eyes look exceptionally green.
4. The color I detest is pink. I can’t wear pink (not that I would choose to) and it’s just a little too precious for me. I wasn’t super girlie when I was little, but I did have a penchant for Barbie and my closet was filled with various articles of pink clothing bearing grass stains.
5. If you were to look in my closet most of the colors you’d see would be pretty monochromatic. (I live in New York after all…) I have a lot of grays, whites and blacks.
6. A color that I simply cannot pull off no matter how hard I try is cream or nudes. I’m too fair skinned and it washes me out.
7. The color of my favorite dress is kind of a cross between midnight blue and eggplant. (A deep purple?) I’m wearing it today in fact!
Bare Legs in March: Spring decided to grace New York City with its presence prior to my vacation and after ditching jeans for shorts and skirts and dresses for about a week, my legs were really digging the fresh air. Today is supposed to be another beautiful day so I thought, “Why not?! Get those gams back out and wear a dress to work.” You will never hear me complain about getting to wear a sundress, and certainly not when it’s in March.
dfl Travel Mugs: My mom (because she’s awesome) sends me the occasional box of odds and ends. One of her more recent deliveries included 3 dfl travel mugs. Knowing me as she does, she knows I like my coffee, and thought these cute little mugs would meet my caffeine-addict needs nicely. They’re nice because they don’t leak or spill on the train and the lids stay on nice and tight. Thanks, Mom! (And no, I was not paid to write this…)
Apples and Peanut Butter: Honestly, this is one of my favorite snacks. Two things I love that pair so nicely. Great pre or post-run or as a little snack. (I don’t really think there’s any time that this combination isn’t good…) *Note: I don’t usually include chocolate chips or oats, but I just remembered that this combination exists and that I must try it soon…
Work: (Shhh… I know, I know. “Favorite” may be a bit of a stretch, but bear with me…) My job is awesome. It is. It’s hard to explain to people what it is that I do on a day-to-day basis, and sometimes I feel like it still sounds so entry-level, but that’s just me projecting. I have no reason to complain about anything. (Yet, I still always find something to complain about…) It’s easy to get frustrated when you don’t see yourself doing exactly what it is you want to do, but why not make the most of what you are doing? I just need to remind myself how awesome it is to work in a great lab and to have such awesome, understanding bosses. I’m lucky. (Seeing all of your hard work and data come together in a great lab meeting never hurts either.)