Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A Dopey Kind of Weekend

Little did I realize what I was signing up for when I decided to run Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge plus the Family 5K. I knew that running 3 races in a row was not something I should do on a regular basis but once should be okay and it is Disney so...I did my research on how to train for such a Dopey kind of race and waited for October 1 to arrive. I wasn't prepared for the foot injury that was to befall me in July. I blame too much/too soon trail running. My achilles and other areas of my foot would hurt after my training runs and the next morning but not during the run generally. This caused my mileage to be lower than what I was used to. Couple that with a 5 day sickness around Thanksgiving and you have someone who was supposed to be training at around 45-55 miles per week that was barely running 4-5 days some weeks. I did manage to squeeze in 3-20 milers (only one of which was 21 miles and the other 2 were 20) and one double back weekend (I ran 18 miles one day and 13 the next). I was supposed to do 2 double back weeks but ran out of time. As I averaged my weekly mileage during this training cycle I was quite distraught when I realized I had only averaged 28 miles per week for the 3 months. Good grief, how in the world am I going to last 42.4 miles at Disney? I was pretty nervous-I tried to hide it from everyone. Maybe I can still BQ I said all the while thinking, yeah right, in your dreams!! Fast forward to race weekend. Day 1-5K, I ran about a 10 minute pace for the 5K. No big deal, I felt good. I knew this was the easy part! I was back at the hotel before it was light. Day 2-Half marathon, I felt pretty good the first few miles and was having trouble keeping my pace easy so I stopped several times to walk and go to the bathroom. Half marathon complete in under 2:10-not too bad. I was amazed my foot wasn't hurting either! Day 3-Marathon, I wake up at 2am feeling pretty good. Not sore really at all and my foot isn't hurting either. Maybe this won't be as bad as I think. I get to the start line and find the 3:45 pace group. I tell Bill that I'm going to stay with him as long as I can. I followed Bill and his balloons for about 2 miles. It was then I knew it was going to be a very long day...What happens through the next 24 miles is a back and forth with running at a comfortable pace, walking at a fast pace, shuffling along, passing other run/walkers, being passed by the same run/walkers, and thinking that this is the craziest thing I've ever done and I won't be signing up for it again. My iShuffle got overheated at mile 8 and I am very glad Disney has some of the best entertainment around, I didn't even miss my music. At mile 15 I seriously thought that I was going to walk the last 11 miles. As it turns out, I was able to eek out a 5:08. I was surprised I made it in such a fast time considering how much I had to walk. As I passed the 24 mile marker I thought, the best thing about this race other than actually crossing the finish line, is that I never have to sign up for anything like this again. That was the first thing I told Will too! And here we are 3 days later...guess what, I still feel the same way! As I try to analyze what went wrong I don't have too many answers other than my terrible training cycle and that I am still working on my nutrition during the race. No excuses though. I did what I could and am thankful to have finished all 3 races! Mickey Mouse was proud of me too! And, even Goofy bowed down to me in the park! And it is Disney!! Next up is the Myrtle Beach Marathon in mid-February. That is only 5 weeks away, hardly enough time to make up for a terrible training cycle since October but, I will do what I can and then regroup for the next marathon. Yes, I still think I enjoy the marathon distance. I can't say farewell without listing some of the interesting things I saw during the race... 1. Of course, public urination is perfectly acceptable during races. I found my spot in the woods before the race start along with the other needy ones. Yes, I always have my toilet paper! 2. Several men were wearing tutus 3. Will saw one guy running the race backwards 4. Volunteers are the best at Disney races 5. One guy was actually running in sandals Happy Running and Hello Better!!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Ode to Mr. Taper and Nervous Energy

It is hard to believe the Disney race is almost here, I mean, I've only been thinking and planning for this for the last half year. If you had told me 5 years ago that in a few days I would not only be racing for 3 days in a row but completing my 5th marathon, I would have laughed out loud. Long gone are those sluggish days where I could hardly wait to get into bed...wait, I still can't wait to go to bed but at least now it's not because I'm sluggish! Running has transformed my life in so many ways, I can't believe I am where I am today. I am thankful to be here though and that I have the opportunity to coach others to reach their goals. But this is supposed to be an ode to Mr. can tell I have nervous energy already! I don't like the taper period simply because you don't run your regular mileage. Granted, you need to rest up and store that glycogen in your muscles for the big race but still...anyway, it is a necessary evil and one that is almost over. Come Sunday morning at 3am I may be wishing I was tapering again. Not sure if I will have time to blog again before the race so I wanted to let you know my "plan". I plan to run the 5K and half marathon at an easy pace. My goal for the 5K is anywhere between 26-28 minutes and the half is anywhere around 2 hours. Come marathon day, I will begin with the 3:45 pace group and see how that goes. I'm not really expecting to BQ but I would seriously kick myself in the butt if I woke up and felt the best I ever felt and had not prepared to race for a BQ. I told Will to not worry as I may be way past 4 hours, even 5. Who knows how my body will respond to what I'm getting ready to put it through. You can be sure of 1 thing-whatever time I finish is pretty much all I had to give that day. There will be other races--Myrtle Beach in fact--Really the important thing for this weekend is to complete the Dopey Challenge, get those 4 medals, wear them proudly in the park (for about 5 minutes) and get my picture taken with the Big Mouse himself. I will ask him once again if he is proud of me and I know he will shake his head furiously!! I think I need to get my picture taken with Goofy and Dopey too now that I think about it! Thanks to you all for your support! I know many of you have told me that you enjoy the runner tracking and hearing about my racing ventures so that you don't have to run yourself haha or you just like living through me and my crazy running and I appreciate that more than you know! It's been a fun journey getting to this really crazy race--and no, no, no- Charles, Joey, Jack, John, Blanca, and all you other ultra runners--I have no plans to switch to the dark side. My race is over a 3 day period-you crazies do yours all in one day! Check my facebook page on race day and you will see the split times!