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Planning…

After what seemed like not the best run, I rallied, and ended up with a pretty solid training weekend.  Some Oktoberfest plans got sidelined (darn!), but it opened the window for a nice long hike at McKinney Falls.  This is one of my favorite pictures I have ever taken.  It is an old shot at McKinney Falls.  I wish there was more water now, but the walk was nice and bought me about 4-5 more miles at a nice brisk pace with Mike and Pancake.   This am was 8 more with Pancake and I discovered that the neighborhood behind Mueller has peacocks!

I tried to take a little nap later, and couldn’t sleep, so I rethought my whole training.  I’ve been trying to run long with my road friends, who are fabulous, wonderful, fun folks, but they are trying to run marathons and I am not.  I am trying to run 100 miles on a trail, and their road marathon training pace is just too fast.  I keep up fine, but I am not training myself to run long, slow, and efficiently.  I also accepted, I am weak.  Running over 20 on my own gets hard.  I am not as tough as Mark R, who ran 30 on Saturday.  Sooo, I am surrendering and running some races as training runs.  Looks like Warda 50K is on this list.  Between that and Sunmart/ Decker, I shouldn’t have to go over 20-ish on the weekends.   I originally had not wanted to do a lot of races because of the the time suck factor, but I give up.   It is just easier to run 30 miles when someone else plots out a course and provides aid stations.
I ended the weekend by making super yummy potato leek soup, which I thought was a springtime thing, but Whole Foods had fresh, organic leeks on special.  I also made my favorite chocolate chip peanut butter cookies, so I guess will have to do some long runs if I plan to keep eating this way 🙂
Off to watch the season finale of Mad Men.  I don’t know what I will do without it…. it is such a good show!
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I get by with a little help from my friends…

Uggg, this morning’s run wasn’t the best ever.  This week was a little overwhelmed with other appts, so I knew I would miss yoga this week.  Bad training incident #1.  Next, I didn’t have my usual group to hook up with for long runs, so I was thinking I would be doing the whole thing solo.  Bad training incident #2.   Luckily, at the 11th hour, Wesley and Joe (aka Wesraven) agreed to run about 12 miles with me.  We actually had fun running through south Austin, checking out the day of the dead decorations of south Congress.  As we approached the capital, we had to plow through the Lance Armstrong 5K, and I jealously watched Wesley hurdle over jogging strollers with ease while the masses reduced me to walking in spots.  I said good bye to Wesraven and headed back to the Rock, for a shot of Dr. Pepper and another 7 miles to hit at least 20.  It went just fine..there was some kind of huge high school crew meet, derby, contest, whatever, not sure what the right term is.  But once again, I was dodging parents with folding charis and Starbucks, surly teenagers, and designer dogs.  I looked at my garmin and saw I was running 8:15 miles (which is fast for me at mile 17) and I knew it was because I didn’t want all the high school kids to think “Check out the old lady running,  why don’t these slow old people just give it up.”  At least I didn’t want to appear too pathetic.  The goal today was 25 or 20 plus yoga class.  Well, neither happened.  I finished at 900 and to rush to yoga after 20 miles, a couple of gels in my stomach, and then endure an hour and a half of total ass kicking headstands, sounded, well, horrible.  There was a fresh pot of Ruta Maya dark roast coffee waiting at home, I was hungry, I stunk, I’d been up since 430 and I said “F— it.”  So, looks like it will get tacked onto tomorrow’s run.

I also realized this is a little hard for me this go round, because I don’t really have a consistent training partner.  I am doing a lot more on my own.  I enjoy the little bursts of company, but a 25 mile run is a lot easier when you are meeting a friend and you push each other through.  I think that is why my first Sunmart was really not that hard to train for.  I had someone roped in for every run.  I think I might have to toss a couple races into my training, just to get a little help with my long runs.  
I also had to remind myself this is a long process.  It is only late October.  I still have Nov, Dec, and about half of January before starting to taper.  The longer stuff will happen.  I am doing the best I can under my schedule limitations, and desire not to give up my whole life to one hobby.  If 100 miles was easy, it wouldn’t be a challenge, and isn’t that why I am doing it?
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Weekend fun run…

I just noticed today is the IBM 10K. I also was thinking how much MORE fun my morning run was than the 10K (which runs through a mall and IBM
property..how boring is that?). Mark R. was kind enough to meet me for a greenbelt run. We did the grotto loop in perfect weather. What a fantastic morning! I think this was the weekend all of Austin has been waiting for since April. I saw Mark L. on the trail too, and he is trying to talk me into doing the double decker after Sunmart (more on that in a minute), and Mark R, tried to talk me into Far West/ Ladera Norte sometime….so the lesson learned is guys named Mark must enjoy watching me suffer. Hehe…actually I am flattered either one of them thinks I am tough enough for such endeavors, as I don’t always feel that way!

Saturday went much better than last weekend. I got about 22, with 18 miles of running, and about 4 of power walking with friends at the end. After a quick shower, Mike and I headed back to Town Lake for the Tour De Fat, a beer/ biking celebration put on by New Belgium brewery. We walked a couple more miles to get to that, and I didn’t bring a wallet with me, so no ID = no free yummy beer (all the New Belgium brews were on tap for a $5 “donation” going to bike related charities) Maybe for the best, as beer is never a good way to rehydrate. It was a very cool event, that I hope comes back next year. I also considered another 3-4 miles for the daily total. Mike and I later had barbecue and 512 pale ale, which has really grown on me. Then we went and played a round of disc golf, which isn’t really my thing, but Mike is a fanatic, so I humored him with my 10 over par on each shot. What made it better than last weekend, is despite a full day, I didn’t feel so spent like last weekend. I really felt fine all day. Maybe training works?!? (and I tried an ice bath….talk about suffering…..)

So, looks like I am in for Sunmart 50K. My friend Meghan showed some interest and I think she would be a natural for ultra running, so I told her I would do it with her. Plus, I don’t think 50K will burn me out too much on Huntsville S.P. Should be a lot of fun to “only ” run the 50K (and you still get a cool blankie at the finish!)

So, time for a Sunday of household chores/ fun. Gonna try and put together some tofu enchiladas green sauce. We’ll see, my experiments do not always work. Mark also pointed out it is time for pumpkin goodies, so maybe some bread or cookies. Mmmm…..

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Second thoughts…


This week I am having major second thoughts about RR100. Maybe I have other things on my mind, maybe the major time suck that training for 100 miles creates has gotten to me, maybe it seems too obsessive, maybe it seems silly all of a sudden, I am not sure why I thought “WTF am I doing!?!” Maybe I’ll get over it, maybe I won’t. Damn that concurrent 50 mile race! Makes backing out an option. Uggg!!

Also, electronic gadgets need to stay away from me. First my laptop is gone, then my camera, and now my beloved Garmin is dead after only 10 months. I’ve been told by other people they don’t last long, but 10 months!?! Seems a little short. Of course it under warranty still, but the receipt for it is long gone…

Anyhow, I know all this sounds a little negative, and I don’t want it to come off that way. I just ain’t feeling 30 and 40 mile training runs at the moment.

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Whew!


This picture has nothing to really do with my weekend, other than the fact I have been thinking about getting a bird feeder, and was looking at them today…

After little running last weekend, I had to turn it up a notch this weekend. I had planned for 22 including the notorious Stratford Dr, which has some of Austin’s biggest up and down hills. My friend Kelley invited me to do the Skirtchaser 5K on Saturday. I don’t usually do 5Ks, but with your entry fee, you got a skirt, a shirt and a visor which were all really nice designs that I liked. So I was in. I cut my run down, and ended up with 20.7. I had a great time with friends, and was thankful Meghan was willing to run a little slower than me. Stratford killed my legs though. A wonderful thing did happen, and at 18 miles, I realized I wasn’t tired at all. I finished with only some leg soreness from the mega hills.

The 5k was at 5pm, and prior to it, we had a birthday party that was in conjuncture with the UT/ OU game. Well, anyone here in Austin knows the beer was flowing, so pre 5K, I managed a pint, and a giant grilled cheese and tomato sandwich. Got to the 5K, and was wondering where fall went. It was hot! Kelley and I ran very slowly, it was fun, but the course was nothing special. I loved all the gear I got though. We finished and had enough of being hot and dusty and went to a nearby wine bar for a glass of wine and some snacks. I got home utterly exhausted, and stayed up to take Mike downtown to hear a band. I slept well that night after a 24 mile total with pint of Live Oak in the middle.

This am the alarm went off at 6, and I knew the greenbelt just wasn’t happening. I slept a little later, and took Pancake to Mueller and we had a great little 6 miler. Once again, I wondered, “where is fall!!?”, as it was sunny, muggy, and hot. I was fairly sore today, but I am attributing it to Stratford.

So, a pretty successful weekend. I have had my moments lately of feeling overwhelmed by 100 miles. I am just trying to trust that I am doing the right training for me and it will get me to the finish. I also had an absolutely insane yoga class this week, that left me sore for 4 days. The seemingly impossible things I do in yoga really help build confidence for my big event. I also would like to think of the yoga days as a replacement for a weekday mid distance run (which I used to do when I could shower at work). On yoga days, the class combined with my run that am, totally kick my ass. I am feeling it for sure the next day.

I also don’t want to get carried away with the training. There are a lot of things to enjoy and get into, and exercise isn’t the only thing out there. I don’t want my weekends to be all running and catching up on chores. This is why I just refuse to do back to back long runs. Hopefully keeping in perspective will pay off in the end.

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Home sweet home…

So glad to be home after my class in San Diego.  The class was great, but I was not loving San Diego.  Our hotel was no where near the beach, and my coworker and I splurged on a cab ride there and back , so we could at least say we saw something besides the Hyatt parking lot and freeways.  I did manage to run about 6 miles each day on lovely footbridges over highways and around a very charmless university area.  Although, the temperature was pleasant at least.  I went for a walk and found myself on the “La Jolla hike and bike” which was just a side walk winding around malls and hotels.  What kind of hike and bike is that?  It made me appreciate how pretty Austin is.  I was fine until last night, when the class was over, and I was just ready to come home.   Maybe there were nicer beach areas, but I just never made it to them.  Anyhow, as this was my first business trip, I have a new appreciation for those who have to travel a lot.  I don’t think it would be for me.   

So, as I already knew, I would have to make this a down weekend.  There was no way I could get a long run in.  I managed 16 before I left.  I figured I’ll just have to make it a rest week, and then come back next week.  I will be looking extra forward to it, as I have been immersed in the world of coding traumatic injuries now for awhile, without the benefit of a weekend break.  
Not much else to talk about, I am still a little brain fried from my class.  Is it Friday yet?