Monday, November 17, 2014

Base Building: 2 weeks of logs

I have been starting to work on building up my mileage and my speed again, in preparation for the official start of marathon training season, which begins on January 4 for a 16 week plan culminating in the Medical Mutual Glass City Marathon. And hopefully my BQ as well! At least that is the plan and the goal.

So since I am just base-building, I am keeping updates to a bi-weekly place, since I am not needing to focus QUITE so much on the mileage just yet. But it will be good to keep track of where I am as I continue to ramp things back up as I start to roll into my new training plan and get ready to start really focusing my efforts toward a single goal.

So, let's look at the beginning of November and see how things are rolling out so far for the month.

Week of November 3
Monday: 4 miles progressive - 7:46 avg pace
Tuesday: OFF
Wednesday: 4 miles easy
Thursday: 4 miles easy, 0.7 miles walked
Friday: OFF
Saturday: OFF
Sunday: 5 miles

Week of November 10
Monday: OFF
Tuesday: 4.5 miles, 6x400m @ 6:35
Wednesday: 4 miles easy
Thursday: OFF
Friday: 4 miles easy
Saturday 6.15 miles @ 7:55 pace
Sunday: OFF (well, pushups when the Chiefs scored)

First week - 17.7 miles
Second week: 18.65 miles

Not bad, not bad. I am enjoying the 6-ish mile long runs, but that will not work for too much longer. Pretty soon I am going to have to start ramping it up again, and while I am semi-ready for that, I am not sure that it is going to be super fun. I am tired right now just thinking about it, but that is more likely exhaustion from all of the work. Hopefully things relax a little bit and then I can get back to my real life - running.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Busier than I bargained for

October was not a great month, in any way. I had a rough go, and even though Columbus ended up being everything that I had hoped for (and even more, I honestly am not sure that I ever expected to come that close to my BIG goal), the rest of the month left me defeated as far as goals go. As a result, I am not sure that I even want to review my goals that I set for the month.

I did accomplish a few things this month, and I have made some big strides, but overall, there is nothing to report.

I am officially back on the training wagon, doing speed work this week for the first time since before the marathon. I have a lot of work to do to start feeling like my old self while running, but I know that with patience all of it will come back quickly. After all, I am just in the post training cycle/pre training cycle flux, which is leading to less overall miles as well as slower miles.

I said I made progress though, right? I now set my treadmill to 7.0 for all easy runs. I have come a long way since my first marathon when I set it at 6.2 and sometimes struggled to keep that up.

Ugh, is that what I have to write about these days? The speed that I set my treadmill on during non-speedwork runs? That feels a little bit sad. But this is a log of my life, right? So I suppose I need to put it out there... That is how things are going these days. I am exhausted from working a lot of hours trying to get things done, I am not logging the workouts that I want to, no matter how hard I am trying for the same reason. Work.

But honestly, work has been good lately, it has even been fun! Things have been hectic, stressful, and overall overwhelming, but I am enjoying it. There is a small part of me that missed the late hours and the crazy schedule that comes with working on public accounting, which was what I did before I came to this company. So the last few weeks have kind of been a throw back to those times, simpler times when I could actually work late, skip meals, etc without anyone else being dependent on me. But now, I do have those people who need me. Addie, J, everyone.

Addie is the only thing that gets me out of the office at a semi-reasonable time. I need to pick her up by six, so most days, that gets me out of the office.

Things are ok though. I am trying to push forward and figure everything out.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Starting to base build

So after taking a week off (well, a week of running) and just walking for a few days, this past week seemed like as good a time as any to get my legs rolling again and start working on the base building that I will need rolling into spring marathon training. My goal for the weeks leading up to the beginning of a 16 week training plan are gong to include getting up to a 15 mile long run and making sure to run fast at least once every week. And by fast, I mean really fast. We are talking sub-7 mile repeats. In my mind, that scares the pee out of me, but I MUST be capable of them, right?

Yesterday I was up early to drink my coffee and feed Addie breakfast and waiting for 9 am to watch the NYC marathon. I wish they spent more time following the races instead of telling me the history of the Verrazano bridge right now. I mean, hello, these runners are solid but slight. With 25 mph winds, they could blow right off, so let's keep the camera on them. Regardless, that definitely upped the motivation to really work hard this spring and try to get that BQ that I was so close (yet so far...) from in Columbus a few weeks ago.

So this past week, let's look at the running.

Monday: 2 mile run, half mile walk. 8:27 pace
Tuesday: 3 mile run @ 8:24, 1.12 mile walk
Wednesday: 3.1 mile run @ 7:52
Thursday: 3 mile run @ 7:50
Friday: 5 mile run @ 7:24, tempo effort
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 6 miles, treadmill, 8:34 pace

22.1 miles run. 1.62 miles walked.

Overall, I had a good week. I am not mentally feeling ready to tackle double digit running yet. I am just tired of the long run still, and since I don't need to run "long" yet, I am enjoying a break from running for multiple hours. Soon enough that will be back. But for now, I am enjoying the freedom and flexibility.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Seeking joy

And now for something completely different. Not running related. Shocking right?

I have been thinking about joy lately. Yes. JOY.

joy
joi/
noun
  1. 1.
    a feeling of great pleasure and happiness.
    "tears of joy"
    synonyms:delight, great pleasure, joyfulness, jubilationtriumphexultation,rejoicinghappiness,
    gladness, gleeexhilarationexuberanceelation,euphoriablissecstasy,
    raptureMore
verb
literary
  1. 1.
    rejoice.
    "I felt shame that I had ever joyed in his discomfiture or pain"

(Yoinked from google)

This is something that I have been thinking about on the in between times, when I am not out running with Greg and Charlie, when I am not plotting my next marathon/BQ attempt -or sometimes when I am. That would bring me joy for sure. 

Obviously there is a little bit more to joy though. I have been working recently to get myself in a better place mentally since I have certainly been experiencing some stress and anxiety for the last few years (yep, it has been that long, ask Karen...) So attempting to figure out how to rewire my brain, change my thoughts, etc, is only going to be beneficial to me as a mom, a runner, a partner, a friend. 

I am working on it.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Marathon Training: Recovery week

I was not sure that I was going to write this post, but I made the decision that SO MANY people struggle the week after a marathon. After you come down from the high of finishing, you sink into a level of depression (ok, I did!) that you feel can only be cleared up by immediately beginning to train for your next race. I get it, trust me.

I obviously took the more unconventional approach to forcing myself to rest, which may have blown up even more than the average person. Being completely UNABLE to run made me want to even more, in case that was even possible. I researched ALL of the races, planned out every single run from now until GCM, and focused on running and running only for the entire week.

So yeah, if you want to force yourself to take time off from running and make yourself rather miserable in the process because it ends up being all you can think about, I highly recommend scheduling surgery. Regardless, I got through the procedure and while I am still wrapped up shoulder to wrist and I have not taken a shower since last Wednesday (I am stuck with baths because I can keep my arm out of the water easily), I am finally feeling back to normal and ready to tackle these few weeks before the East Side Turkey Trot, which I would love to run in 21:xx. *crosses fingers*

I spent a few days last week sitting on my butt, but there were a few days when I just NEEDED to do something. So here is the recovery week in review:
Monday: Rest
Tuesday: rest (wanted to run, convinced myself otherwise)
Wednesday: surgery
Thursday: 1.78 mile walk with Carol
Friday: rest
Saturday: 3.22 mile walk with Addie/stroller
Sunday: 3.25 miles on the treadmill (1 mile was run!)

Total: 8.25 miles - not bad, not bad...

Yep, that is what my ridiculous self looked like getting ready to hop on the TM yesterday. Normal running stuff + a gigantic arm bandage. I rewrapped it this morning. The swelling has gone way way down, which made the bandage be ridiculously loose. Now that I am rewrapped up, it feels much better. Still have not seen the incision point though because I am coated in gauze. I guess that can wait till Thursday.

So, recovery week is over, now it is all about base building until training officially starts on 1/4/2015. Here we go!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Birds planning

I have not taken any pain meds since yesterday at about 6:30 pm. I am definitely trying to steer clear of them today. I think I will just feel better knowing that I am done with them for this surgery. The swelling seems to be going down as well because my Ace bandage is beginning to loosen up around my arm. So all of these things are positive progress.

This morning, I climbed into the giant tub in my bathroom (seriously, it feels like an absolutely enormous tub!) to relax a bit, shave my legs so I feel a little bit more like a human, and attempt to avoid getting my bandages wet. Obviously, a shower would be much preferred, but I was pretty much told that was not an option. Too much risk of getting things wet, I guess. It is one of those things that I hate, but darn it, I have got to get through this time until the 30th when I get to go back to the doctor and hopefully get all of my bandages off.

I have been planning some birds, since I have not have much else going on these last few days. I know that I am not 100% sure when these birds will happen, but it is something I have been thinking about for a long time that I feel like I need to do. I have been struggling with self, and the freedom of the birds will hopefully give me a feeling a freedom that I have felt like I have been missing.

Lately things have felt rather claustrophobic and I have felt very...  enclosed. I want some level of freedom that I might be able to see on my body since I cannot just get up and take off in the way that I want to.

I have a lot that I am feeling right now, as I am getting ready to dive into my next training plan, but right now, for this moment, I need to focus on the fact that I need to get this BQ.

Here I come GCM - BQ or bust!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Surgical repairs

Yesterday was surgery day. I am not sure if I mentioned that being in my plan or not. Ha! But it is done now.

If you recall, when I was about 26-ish weeks pregnant, last May, I was running a 5K (and SLOWLY running it, I was pregnant, after all) and turned my ankle in a pothole. I bit it, hard, on the pavement and wound up completely fracturing my elbow. The bone on the tip was actually completely severed from the rest of the bone, and remained attached to my tricep, so it actually pulled that bone piece up to the middle of my arm. So surgical repair was the option for me.

Now, 18 ish months later, I was having pain from my hardware. Weird pain too, like it would hurt when a seam from a sweatshirt hit the scar incorrectly or something. And that seems crazy to me. I mean, that is nothing! So I got with Dr. Penix, my surgeon, and he said that the most common way to get rid of that pain? Remove the hardware. So, I went to my pre-op, got cleared, scheduled the surgery for three days after the marathon, and yesterday I arrived at the surgical center at 6 am for my 7:30 am surgery. It was definitely going to be different than my original surgery because I was going to actually get to have some anesthesia this time! Not being pregnant makes a huge difference to what you are able to do.

(PS - I can also have some slightly stronger painkillers this time. Winning!)

They brought me back into the pre-op section, made me pee in a cup (pregnancy test), and then closed the curtain around me so I could get into my hospital gown. I haven't worn one of those things since Addie was born! You gotta love the open back hospital gowns and the socks with grippers on the bottom. That is the best thing about hospitals. Ha! After that, the nurse came back, got me a blanket and taped my ear. They always tape my left ear because I have an earring that I have a difficult time getting in and out. After that, she got me set up for my IV. I was to take one bag of saline and a small amount of antibiotics over the course of the surgery. Luckily, my veins are decent on my left side (they are collapsed in my right elbow) and she had no issues getting the IV into my hand on the first try.

The anesthesiologist came in to talk to me, said that he was not going to give me a block this time. He filled me in on his plan, etc, let me know that yes, you can have some nausea, etc, as a result, but that I should be ok (young, healthy, etc). 10 minutes after that, he gave me my cocktail - at least that is what he called it - squirting two syringes into my IV. I was then wheeled into the operating room where I chatted with everyone back there and then nothing. As far as I know I could have gone out in the middle of a sentence.

Here is what came out of my elbow.
7 screws and a plate. That is hard to believe! And yes, I brought it home with me and I will keep it forever. The screws are quite a bit longer than I would have expected.

I am curious to see what this bow looks like now. I am curious what my incision looks like since it got reopened yesterday. But for right now, I am all wrapped up.
But soon, this will be gone and I will feel great and things will be good. And it will be back to running and back to training.

Here goes.