Saturday, November 29, 2014

Black & Pink Friday With A Weekly Recap On Top

Sunday - 8 miles, 1:05:26, 8:11 pace

Tuesday - 4.73 miles, 35:54, 7:35 pace.  Tempo run: jog first ten minutes, next ten minutes at 5k pace, jog the next ten.  I was going to do another ten minutes at 5k pace, but I had to end the run for a bathroom break.  Yeah, I know.

Thursday - 3.91 miles, not timed

Friday - 4.04 miles, 30:23, 7:31 pace.  I ran a mile to the middle school track where I did 4 x 400m laps at 5k pace with jogging laps in between.  I ran home at an easy pace with one more 400m sprint.

Saturday - 8 miles, 1:05:08, 8:08 pace

Total miles: 28.7   This was the first week I ran five days since mid-August!

I didn't see a ton of Black Friday deals in the running category.  I was hoping to get a Garmin Forerunner 220 for a song, but there were no sales that I was aware of.  Instead, I got myself a Nike winter hat at full price ($30) from Dick's, a nice black Adidas cap for $11 and...the Supernova Glide 6 for $89, both from the Adidas site.  I'm very psyched.  The sneakers are pretty awesome.

And they match! (Unplanned)

This is a men's hat, 
but I really don't care.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Going Back to Cali...No, I Don't Think So

This was a big slacker week for me.  Here's my recap:

Monday: 5 miles

Weekly Mileage:  5 miles

We drove down to Arlington, Virginia last Sunday for a funeral.  We stayed through Wednesday so I thought I would get some runs in around the nation's capital, one of my all time favorite venues, but there was too much going on...and it was cold.  When we returned home, I planned on getting some long runs in to keep my weekly mileage up, but I didn't.  I'm hosting Thanksgiving this year and the house needed some serious cleaning and decluttering (Excuses are like assholes, apparently I've got more than one...).

Along comes Saturday night.  My friend, The Petite Pacer was signed up to run the Long Beach Turkey Trot today.  Even though I had a slacker week, I wanted to sign up.  I still felt like I could run a good race, the weather was going to be perfect and the course is flatter than flat.  I googled Long Beach Turkey Trot, clicked on the first entry, whipped out the ol' credit card and signed my arse up.  Awesome!  I went back to the race home page to double check that packet pickup would be at the usual place, the Long Beach Rec Center.  Imagine my surprise when I read it would be at 1 Granada Avenue, 90803.  Yep, 90803 would be the zip in California.  Really?!  Lucky for me, I can clear my application without being charged within the first fifteen minutes...or could I?  Nope.  I frantically emailed the race director, Justin Rudd, who immediately emailed me back and reimbursed me the $40.40 registration fee.  Thanks, guy!  Yes, in hindsight, I see how I should have realized that the field of 5,000+ runners and 3 different start times was unusual.  Yes, I should have seen the California race date was completely different from the New York one.  And maybe the tanned bikini clad runners in the race photos should have tipped me off...  Honest, totally embarrassing mistake.  One I hope not to repeat, and if I do, I will not be blogging about it.  Fool me once, shame on me.  Fool me twice...and I'm keeping it to myself...

I resorted to an 8 mile run on my regular loop in 1:05:26, a. 8:10 pace.  TPP placed first in her age group.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Ten the Fun Way

I only ran three days during the week but none of the runs dipped below five miles.  I happily thought I would be up to at least twenty-five miles by the weekend.

Tuesday - 6.4 miles, 50:57, 7:58 pace
Wednesday - 5.35 miles, 43:13, 8:05 pace
Friday - 8.69 miles, 1:12:03, 8:17 pace

Saturday was my group run with my buddies, The Emerging Runner (ER) and The Petite Pacer (TPP).  ER's friend, Kin and TPP's boyfriend, JC joined us.  Kin is an accomplished triathlete who just completed his first marathon, New York City with a very respectable debut time.  I met him previously at the Brooklyn Half Marathon.  JC is a fast, yet humble triathlete who often earns awards in his events.  He has the right mix of experience from being a lifelong athlete and the positive attitude of the masculine version of a Dallas Cowboy cheerleader.

We decided ahead of time to do our run on the campus of the State University of New York, Old Westbury.  This venue is well known among Long Island runners who want to get in some hill work.   We met in the parking lot of St. Paul's Church on Cedar Swamp Road in Brookville which is right across the street from the school's entrance.  It was 32 degrees and sunny.  I wore two long sleeve layers on top, my awesome Mizuno tights, a wool hat, and my fleece running gloves.  ER wore...well...his signature baggy shorts over tights to protect us from possible post-traumatic stress disorder.

JC, a natural leader, immediately took us on the one way road running with traffic which concerned me at first.  It also concerned ER and Kin who decided to run on the other side.   JC reassured Celia and me that the one way road only lasts a half mile and then we could cross over.  He was right.  However, regardless of what side we were on, the cars seemed to be going double the 30mph speed limit.  As we neared the end of our first loop, we decided to veer off onto the extension that would lead us to Empire State College.  This is a beautiful treelined road surrounded by horse farms.  I had run this route a couple of times previously, but thought it was only a mile out of the way.  It turned out it was two miles, one out and one back to the main road.  We met up with ER and Kin again on our way back to the campus entrance.

After some JC persuasion, Celia and I agreed to do one more loop without the detour.  This would put us at ten miles, total.  Yesterday I was patting myself on the back for doing 8.69 miles.  I thought all I had to do was a nice, little 5 mile loop today and my weekly mileage would be in the mid-twenties again after many weeks of slacking.   I was not mentally prepared to run ten this morning, and I wasn't sure I was physically prepared either.  I didn't eat much the day before and that morning I was literally running on empty.  All that said, I certainly wasn't going to be the one to say no to the challenge!  ER wanted to run a couple of more miles on his own, but Kin joined us for the second lap.   I thought about taking some pictures during the run, but didn't want to get left behind by the others.  I wouldn't have the energy to catch up to them.  The second loop was easier than expected mainly because of the cheers from our coach, JC.  We finished the hilly 10.12 miles in 1:34, a 9:19 pace.  I was grateful to have completed it, despite a bit of woe-is-me-ing on my part along the way.

We met back up with ER in the church parking lot which we are no longer allowed to use as per the warnings left on our windshields.  So much for the All Are Welcome attitude (Just kidding, God...ha...).  We went for our traditional coffee at Starbucks sharing a lot of stories and laughs.  Mostly about ER's "style sense" (Just kidding, ER...ha...).  I'm already looking forward to our next outing.  Thanks, guys.

ER, JC, TPP, Run DMC, & Kin

30.5 miles for the week.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Mystery Achievement

November 2013:
     Total cholesterol - 251
     HDL - 69
     LDL - 160
     Triglycerides - 110

November 2014:
     Total cholesterol - 196
     HDL - 56
     LDL - 126
     Triglycerides - 66
I'm psyched, however I am not really sure I did anything differently this year, except maybe pass on the large, sugary Dunkin' Donuts coffee right before the blood work...;)

My cholesterol level has been over 200 pretty much most of my adult life, except one random year maybe 10 years ago.  I have always been in pretty good shape, but more so these past few years due to quitting smoking, running more consistently, and eating healthy.  Despite those positive changes, my cholesterol level remained unusually high.  I just chalk it up to genes.  I am not a fan of taking a lot of medication (in most cases, but not all.  I believe in vaccinations and treating serious illnesses that have no viable alternative treatments).  My doctor told me that because everything else was great (low blood pressure, regular exercise, etc.), she would hold off on trying to convince me to pill up (My plan to refuse would still stand when the time came).  We were both pleasantly surprised when these recent numbers came back.  However, this is not necessarily a cause to celebrate because I'm not really sure why the numbers went down in the first place which means I'm not sure if I can repeat the process again next year?  

I thought perhaps this year's results were the accumulated effect of a diet change from over the past three years.  I stopped eating piggies the summer of 2011 after going to a state fair in Massachusetts and seeing the most adorable piglet race in the history of the world.  From that moment on I said goodbye to my beloved bacon omelets forever.  A few months later I stopped eating red meat, as well.  Once in a blue moon, I might eat a steak or hamburger if it is grass fed.    Two years ago I also stopped eating ice cream on a daily basis. I did this not for the cows, but my own convenience.  If you are a regular reader, you know that I have bathroom "issues" when I run.  Ice cream sundaes were not helping.  My cholesterol levels in 2011, 2012, and 2013 were still pretty high.  Did it take a few years to set in?

Or maybe I just didn't fast properly before most of my physicals which is a good possibility if my appointments weren't first thing in the morning?  

I just don't know, but I'll take it.

My test gets the same refrigerator
treatment as the kids!

5.35 miles in 43:13, an 8:04 pace.  This was an interrupted 8 miler due to...a bathroom emergency!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Things I Don't Do, But My 8 Year Old Son Does Whilst Running

Things I Don't Do, But My 8 Year Old Son Does Whilst Running:

1.    Experiment running with his hands behind his back.

2.    Pick up random Halloween candy he finds on the ground.

3.    Eat found Halloween candy.

4.    Earn $1 for each mile run.

5.    Alternate running from the sidewalk to the grass.

6.    Speed up when I say slow down.

7.    Take breaks (Oh who am I kidding?  I take breaks, too).

8.    Skip.

9.    Drag feet in slow motion to demonstrate fatigue.

10.  Have enough energy to play basketball, street hockey, running bases, and tag for hours afterwards.

We did the first 5k together on a sunny 60 degree Election Day.  After dropping him off, I ran another 3.7 miles on my own.  The first half of the run was so much more enjoyable.  Love my running partner.

Look Ma, no hands!

Who needs a fuel belt when you
find what other people dropped?