Tuesday, March 20, 2012
So, I have made some decisions since going back & forth in my mind about what direction I should go athletically speaking - look at me sounding like a freakin' elite athlete or something! Well, after much thought & frankly determining that I am NOT superwoman I have decided that I will move full steam ahead into triathlon training. While I want to do marathon, right now is just not the right time *sigh* which is the story of my life always these pesky kids & DH & J-O-B & such spoil all the fun...luckily I LOVE the fam, the other STUFF well...
Anyhow, I am slowly getting back into the swing of things. I have two 5K's under my belt, strangest thing ever though - did a race on St. Patty's Day, the same race I did 2 years ago & got the same EXACT down to the second finish time that I got the first time around. That has never happened to me...not sure if this is a sign, what does that mean??
So, I have begun week numero uno of triathlon training. & it feels great! Although I had been consistently working out all this time, to have a PLAN & a GOAL is awesome! & this year I am actually using a developed online plan from amateur triathlete. Although I am not necessarily new to this triathlon thang, every year I think I go about it the wrong way by overtraining because I try to develop my own program chock full of hours of workouts but I don't think that I put in enough of a progression from the beginning to the end, I think I jump too quickly & don't balance the workouts for my body. So this time I am going to follow my trusty plan & see if working smarter not harder like most things in life will yield even better results. It is just a serious relief to finally have a game plan & I can just plug along & follow it vs. ok - off to the gym again, maybe some running perhaps some eliptical. I find that I work much, much HARDER when I know that I have something that I must accomplish. Plus, seeing the progress on a week to week is good stuff because frankly I don't give a crap how many miles I supposedly do on an eliptical because in real life you probably will never encounter an eliptical race - Huh-llo! So what therefore is the purpose of THAT??
Anyhow, figured I would share my happy training thoughts & I will be sure to report back with my weekly results, although boring to write it always ensures accountability.
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
The race monster brewing inside of me has returned! I was so excited to do this race on Saturday because this is race where it all began, my very FIRST 5K. This time around I brought DS#1 along for the ride. The St. Pat's 5K in Downtown Providence is HUGE to say the least, thousands upon thousands of people go there. This was the first time that DS#1 actually came for a BIG race, he is used to the more local ones so I could tell he was excited to have such a commotion.
Because of the size of the venue, we ended up at the race location 2 hours early because of parking. DS#1 isn't familiar with Providence like that but as a kid he couldn't help to gawk at some of the locals doing strange things like picking cigarette butts out of the ashtray or the guy & girl that decided to get into a pretty crazy screaming match outside the train station. Ahhhh, good ol'Providence. He was freaked out!
Since we had so much time before the actual race started, DS#1 & needed to kill LOTS of time, so we decided to mosey on over to the Providence Place Mall. Well, first thing we noticed as we stepped out of the car was that it was COLD!!!! I'm talking freezing & windy beyond belief. Now I knew because I had checked the weather that it would only reach about 30-40 degrees BUT I've been out of the racing game for a while now & I forgot completely how to anticipate proper running gear based on the weather or more importantly the wind chill factor. DS#1 proceeded to complain very loudly & repeatedly that he was surely going to freeze to death. So what was a mom to do, improvise of course! We stayed warm inside the Panera Bread store which was the only place open in the mall & stalked Old Navy until 10AM when they opened. Then I proceeded to buy additional layers to make sure that me & my baby would not freeze. Hooray, once again mommy saves the day! Well $60 later (YIKES!) we were finally well equipped for race time. As a side note I must say that this is very uncharasteristic of me, in my racing pro days I would take tons of clothing options with me. This time, I was pulling an amateur move...sheesh!
Even with the added layers of clothing it was still pretty cold out there waiting for race start. The cool part though was a lot of people were dressed in theme for St. Patty's Day we loved it! There were all kinds of runners too & we both lined up ready to give it our all. I could tell DS#1 was nervous but I just let him know to enjoy it, have fun & run really really fast!
After what seemed like forever which really was because we had now waited for 2 hours & 15 minutes to start running we took off. Right out of the gate I started trying to run really fast. What is tough about large races is that you never know if you are going out too fast for your own standards or too slow because there are always people in front of you & behind you. It was great to see all the spectators along the sides of the road. THAT is my favorite part of big races. I loved seeing all of the people with homemade signs cheering for their mom or dad or sister whatever. Although the signs were not for me as I did not bring a cheering section, I waved as if they were.
Mile 1 things were going well especially as my legs defrosted but the wind & cold make it a bit hard to catch my breath so I made a point to remind myself to do that once in awhile. Mile 2 came the hill that pretty much sucks. I remember it from my first time around & back then when I wasn't used to this nonsense & I thought I would die. This time not so much but I wasn't happy about it either, that's for sure! I didn't see DS#1 after Mile 1 but I knew that it would be okay since there were so many people anyway unlike the race in which he managed to get himself lost & run an extra mile.
The finish as usual felt like it took forever, I didn't sprint in as fast as I wanted which is okay, for some reason it is always hard to muster up the energy to sprint in because I somehow think that I will collapse or something. But I made it! It was chip timing but it gave me a gun time of 26:40something which was a-okay by me, especially after having pneumonia for 2 months & honestly believing that I would never run again!
I waited patiently for DS#1 to run in, he ran in gun time at 29 minutes twenty something. I was GLAD that he made it under 30 because I know my 13 year old son, lately let's just say the hormones seem to be kicking in & I was really hoping NOT to have to deal with his attitude if he was upset. As soon as he saw me, he collapsed on my shoulder & I hugged him. He was exhausted. Then I walked him over to the people handing out medals & we both got our medals. HOORAY because that was this was REALLY all about getting bling.
Turns out my chip time ended up being: 26:23 which isn't too shabby considering & DS#1 chip time was 28:51 which was pretty awesome too!
I felt good getting this race down in the books because now it is official, I am back in the game! It may have just been a 5K but I know that this is only the beginning & I plan to DOMINATE this triathlon season! I seriously thought I lost my mojo while being out for the count sick but it is amazing how your body can rebound from anything!
Until next time!
Saturday, March 10, 2012
Do you realize that it has been exactly 3 years since I ran my first race! My very first 5K in Downtown Providence! I didn't believe it myself until I took a look back at that first blog. Today I am going to bring it full circle & venture back to where the magic began. Today at 11:15AM I am running with DS#1 at the St. Pat's 5K race. Although I have run tons of 5K's since then this is a rather climatic return for me as this is my first attempt at racing since recovering from pneumonia & my first race of 2012, I am excited but at the same time nervous. I forgot what those pre-race nerves felt like...
From reviewing my first 5K race blog until now there is one thing that I know for certain, I have CHANGED & *mostly* for the better! Here is what I observed...
* In my first race report I had to audacity to say that this race was HILLY. PUH-lease, what a whiner I was! At this point I had no idea what hills are about at all! Since then I have seen mountains that made my review of this race laughable. What a wuss I was!
* I really thought that 3.1 miles was TONS of miles. Since that was the very first race how did I know that I would soon take on running races up to 13 miles & that I would soon run a 5K immediately after swimming AND biking...how foolish was I!
* DS#1 at the time was 10 years old when I did my first race. He had no interest in running & thought that his mother was clearly losing her mind with all this new running hoopla. Little did he know that the crazy train would keep on running & that I was eventually suck him into the vortex & *gasp* he might even LIKE it!
* I distinctly remember feeling like crap during the race, feeling like I couldn't hack it & feeling like I had to somehow improve this feeling next time around. Little did I know that you feel this way EVERY time you race & anytime you give everything that you have. It's all part of the fun. Sure my times have gotten faster & all but the feeling of really hacking it has not.
BUT with all these changes I have had, here are the things that remain the same
* I am excited that this race gives out a MEDAL to all finishers! This race will be the first in which DS#1 will get one & wearing the bling is always a good thing so I'm pretty excited about that!
* Finishing a race on a Saturday morning is still a great feeling, nothing better than crossing that finish line!
* I am still nervous before this race, just like any other.
* I am still looking to PR or at least improve upon my last race done here!
So this is it, my return to glory! I cannot wait! Wish us luck!!!
Thursday, March 01, 2012
Okay - so here's the situation. I had planned to do a full marathon in March/April as that was the natural progression in my road to true athleticism. I was doing well prepping in December, getting up to 14 miles the most. Then it all came crashing down. First week in January I ended up with pneumonia. I was out for the count for all of January with some very light running & pretty much all of February. I am just now starting to feel better & like myself again but that time off definitely took it's toll so now to train for a marathon I do not necessary have a good solid base which means I will have to start at the very beginning of a training plan, which means a good 16-20 weeks of training.
Here's the dilemna. As you can see from my Sparkpage, triathlons are my love, it's what I WANT to do, it is very challenging & I love it. This will mark my 3 season into this wonderful sport & I am looking forward to it. Last year I invested in a road bike that cost a pretty penny, I have swim ninnies at my 5AM public pool. I'm ready!
Problem I have realized as it is now 3/1/12 is that I don't think that I can do both right now. You see, if I start marathon training say next week, by the time by training is complete I will be smack in the middle of triathlon season! Folks that have done Olympic Triathlons know that in order to perform for about 3 hours you NEED to put in hours upon hours of swimming, biking AND running. It's the only way. My running cuts back to about 3-4 days during this season which I don't *think* is enough for a marathon. Plus, the number of hours that I would need for long distance running right now would probably hurt my biking & swimming because I would need recovery. Other problem is that I live in RI so when I would finish marathon training it would be summer. Summer in RI is too hot for a marathon I'm talking like 80-90 degrees! Some folks that live in the south may think that this is ok but for a full on marathon I would not think so hence the reason that the Boston Marathon is in April.
So then I'm thinking postpone the marathon training altogether & wait, wait until after triathlon season is done which is probably by September ish since I usually like to do around 5. Well by that time if I start a training program by the time I am fully trained then I'm facing winter! & finding any race never mind a marathon around here in the winter is not possible. So my thought was to travel somewhere for the race but then it's around Christmas time which is so hectic with birthdays & the holidays that I'm not sure if that is the ideal time to spend money on crazy expensive airfare & accommodations.
So I don't know what to do! I know what I WANT to do. I want to train for both but I don't think that that is possible. If I had started in January as I planned then I would have been all set for sure. Maybe I am not seeing how this can be done so that's why I'm putting this out there in Sparkland. Maybe fellow Sparkers have dealt with similar scheduling conflicts & could advise a reasonable plan. Honestly in my area, marathon time is from March until May the latest then again from September until very early November the latest.
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