Sunday, January 30, 2011

We're all crazy.

The running community is a truly truly funny place. This is a community where people openly talk about things like runner's trots, chaffing, and sweat soaked undies. This is a community that thrives on supporting others, and receiving motivation in return. This is a community that accepts others openly - no matter where you are in your fitness or training. Run, and they will welcome you with open arms. Lastly, this is a community that is bound together by a common bond so significant that we all feel like we really know each other. We can follow each other's workouts on Daily Mile or read the blogs and we actually feel like we're friends. When you really think about it, it's bizarre. But for us? It's not so bizarre.

For example, I have been friends with Jan on DM for a while, and I've been reading/commenting on her blog (which you should all do, too). And we've been talking about races in other states and how we should travel to one. We've never met in person, and yet we're talking about traveling... to a race... together. Think about that. It SOUNDS so weird.

Also, I've been starting to think that my goal for the future (maybe 2012, maybe 2013) is one of those epic relay races. The three people I've talked to about it are Jess, Janae, Katie, and Jan. Out of these four awesome women, I have only met one in person. That one is Katie, who I went to high school with, but we were never even close friends. But here's the thing about this weird common bond - it wouldn't be *that* weird for us to do a crazy relay race together. It doesn't matter that most of us haven't met, we all have similar goals and mindsets and we're all INSANE enough to watch a trailer like the one for the Hood to Coast movie and go "I WANT TO DO THAT."

(Just in case you don't know what I'm talking about.)

It's such a cool community. It's so crazy and so different but these people become so important to you after a while. It's really impossible to describe in a way that others will understand, but if you are a runner, you WILL understand. And it's so contradictory because as we're doing our miles alone on the road, you would think that we would feel so isolated. But I have the words of other runners in my head. I'm thinking about what Janae will eat for dessert. I'm wondering how everyone else's runs are going. It's an odd bond, but it's one I am incredibly grateful for.


Recent workouts:

Friday - 5 mile run in 1:05
Saturday - rest
Sunday - 4.1 mile run in 0:51

Favorite running songs of the day:

"I'm Shipping Up to Boston" by the Dropkick Murphys
"The Distance" by Cake
"Like a G6" by Far East Movement, Cataracs, and Dev
"When You Were Young" by the Killers


Saturday, January 22, 2011

I might be an idiot.

Ohhh where to start?

First of all, I broke the big toe on my right foot. It's not pretty.

But has this slowed me down? Nope. On Wednesday (read: the day after breaking the toe) I did a brick and then some. I biked 13, ran 3.2, and then went into the locker room to shower. I looked at myself in the mirror and realized that I was still vibrating with energy and I didn't look NEARLY dead enough. So I went back out and got back on the bike and did another 12. So.. I might be crazy. But it was the best (and most intense) workout of my life.

Thursday I didn't get to workout, and I wasn't happy about it. So Friday, home from class due to snow, I took the dogs for a 3.5 mile walk. In the snow. They were so brave! They didn't wuss out or anything - not even Jack who is NOT good in the snow. I taped the crap out of my toe beforehand, but it was still a little sore afterwards. That's ok though, because we all needed the workout. Then, not feeling done, I hooked up my bike trainer for the first time. It's definitely weird and it's going to take some getting used to (and possibly clip pedals/shoes), but I think I'll learn to like it. Knightley, however, isn't so sure.

Lastly, I'd like to share two things with you. One, what "taping the crap out a toe" looks like.

Yep, I was ready to run. I was DYING to run. I've been itching to run five miles all week... but unfortunately, it didn't happen today. But I DID get to run. I got on the treadmill with some new songs loaded on my tiny ipod and got to work.

New running songs: "How You Like Me Now" by The Heavy, "When I Grow Up" by the Pussycat Dolls, "Tik Tok" by Ke$ha, "La La" by Ashlee Simpson

With the help of these songs (namely "How You Like Me Now" which wound up on repeat for the last mile), I banged out the fastest 5k of my life. It was 36 minutes - which includes walking five minutes as a warm up. I realize that this isn't "fast" but it's fast for me.

But this is the second thing I wanted to share with you - why I'm an idiot. Because I do, in fact, have a broken toe. So maybe that wasn't the best idea? As soon as I finished my miles I stumbled around while wiping down the treadmill and then limped my way into the locker room. I then proceeded to throw up from the pain in my foot. I thought I was ok after that, tried to do one weight machine, and then jogged back into the locker room to throw up again. So yeah, I might be an idiot.

...But a PR is worth the pain every time.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Day of Firsts

Today I did my first official brick. For those of you who aren't hip with the triathlon lingo, a brick is doing back to back workouts to get the feel of the bam bam bam nature of a triathlon. I've done swimming then biking several times, but seeing as I have to drive to the gym or home after swimming, that's a solid 15 to 30 minute break in between workouts. I've also done running then biking, but I hadn't done biking then running. It's easy to bike through discomfort - not so true with running. So today I biked 14 miles (in my fastest pace to date - 30 minutes - 28 mph) and then I went straight to the treadmill and ran 3.1 miles. I probably walked a total of a half mile, and ran the rest. I thought I was going to throw up after my workout (and spent five minutes lying on the bench in the locker room waiting to see if it would happen) but I pulled through and managed not to vomit. Win. Afterwards, Jake told me that I looked "like death" - that's love.

(Hair is soaked roots to tips. Not gross at all.)

Another first today: I got the lactic acid build up in my legs. Around mile 2, it hit me like the engine sludge in those oil commercials. It was sudden and my legs felt like stone. I had to slow to a fast paced walk to try and loosen them up a little, sipped some water, and then went into a FAST run. It hurt like a you know what, but I broke through it. I came out the other side, and I didn't eat treadmill. Win-win.

A first since September - I got a side stitch. That hasn't happened since I first started running seriously. However, another first, I didn't let it defeat me. Back in September, it would make me stop - but this time I just took deeper breaths and finished my miles.

Also, it was the first time I ever cheered for the Bears. My other teams are out (GIANTS, Colts, Broncos), so I decided I would cheer for the Bears haha. I was jumping around on the treadmill when they won, much to the chagrin of the Seahawks fan two treadmills down from me.

My last first of the day (that I can think of, at least): I tried coconut water. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate coconut, but I bought a few different flavors of it (plain, with pineapple, and with pomegranate) for Jake to try because he was interested. Jake brought the pineapple one with him to the gym so he could drink it afterwards, and we split it on the drive to the grocery store. I can't say it was my favorite thing ever, but it hit the spot after that workout.

Lastly, this is something I've been thinking about since earlier. When today's workout was killing me and I was considering giving up, I thought about where I was in September. Back when running a mile would make me throw up because my body was so unprepared. If I had tried to do a brick in September, I legitimately think it might have killed me. And while I didn't get my best 5k time today, I didn't get my worst either. I survived it - I needed an ice bath after it, but I survived it.

It's amazing to think about how far you can go in so little time. To anyone who thinks that they can't get into shape, believe me, you can. It IS possible. And you'll feel so amazing when you look back at what you used to be.

Oh and - dinner.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


I haven't posted because I haven't been working out enough. Let's make this brief, because the Benadryl is kicking in.

On wednesday I biked 40 miles out of sheer boredom. It was on the recumbent bike, but I suppose it still counts. I'm not going to say it felt good, but it was fun to see the numbers go up that high. I then took TWO days off, and that really really wasn't fun, but I've been feeling super crappy. I had a really bad headache for like three days straight, and my stomach was being weird. I couldn't do much more than leave my couch.

However, I got back on the bike today (even though I'm definitely not 100%). Also, and most importantly, I've OFFICIALLY registered for my first triathlon. It's May 22nd. And I would save money if I registered for two at once, so I'm also registered for one the weekend before I get married. We'll see if that one actually happens, haha. I wasn't paying attention to the date when I registered. Maybe it will be a great last minute self-esteem boost pre-wedding? Or maybe I'll do the one in May and decide that I'm stupid for ever thinking I can do it. ...But I have a feeling that this is something I will get seriously addicted to.

Look. Proof.

Expect a new running shoe review in the near future. I'm not up to it right now, and I've only gotten to use them once. I feel it's only fair to my old shoes to run at least two more times in the new ones before announcing how incredible they are.

Oh and wish me luck - I'm shopping for my WEDDING DRESS on tuesday. Please oh please let me fall in love (in person) with the one I've been obsessed with for over a year. SIGH.

That's all for now. Back to being a blob on the couch. I hope you're all feeling healthy!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Racing, ecstasy, and cleaning out the fridge.

Yesterday, while the rest of the country (as well as others) was sleeping in and still throwing up liquor from the night before, I got up and ran a 5k. I was having one of those mornings where my only thought was "why did I think this was a good idea?" I wasn't hungover (I didn't even drink on New Year's Eve), but I just wasn't feeling it. It was strangely warm for Massachusetts in January (about 58 degrees fahrenheit), and I'd wanted a seriously cold run. But Jake and a couple of our friends came to Salisbury with us to support me, so it wasn't the time to bow out. So I raced.

I accidentally got two personal records. My first mile was 10 minutes - this may seem long to some, but for the kid who started running in September, this was a PR. In my second mile, my back started killing me. I'm still not sure why, but it just seriously hurt. I struggled through and finished with a time of 40 minutes. This is NOT my fastest 3.1 ever, but it IS my fastest race to date. And it ended with an ocean plunge - a very cold ocean plunge. But I got a free glass for doing it, and a little bit of Budweiser (which I had no desire to drink).

(Not the best picture ever, but just goofy enough to be awesome.)

Today I gave myself the best Christmas present anyone could ever give herself. NEW RUNNING SHOES. I've been thinking about getting new ones, and after the race yesterday, I knew it was time. My feet were achey afterwards - and not just because I walked back to the car with barefeet and walked on snow with the barefeet as well (ow). It was time. Now allow me to formally present my new babies:

Aren't they beautiful? I can't wait to run tomorrow. I've been twitching ever since I bought them, but it'll have to wait till tomorrow. Sigh.

Lastly, after a linner of a-mazing sushi, we didn't get hungry till like 8 pm. I decided to make "cleaning out the fridge pasta" - i.e. some of my high protein multigrain pasta plus ALL of the vegetables in the fridge. These are all of the veggies that went in.

1.5 zucchini(s?)
1.5 green peppers
5 off the vine tomatoes
1/2 of a red onion

I cooked the veggies with a little olive oil, black pepper, a pinch of kosher salt, red pepper flakes, and a little garlic powder (for lack of real garlic) then poured it over the pasta. Then I added a little feta cheese. Yum freaking yum. SO good. Jake's response? "Wow, you weren't kidding about it being heavy on veggies." I never joke about vegetables - it's not in my herbivore nature. Anyway, this is what it looked like all together.

I'm becoming increasingly obsessed with zucchini. I have the newfound desire to add it to everything I eat - a little strange. But I suppose there are worse things to be obsessed with. Such as pizza. The past couple weeks I literally can't eat too much pizza. I'm wondering what my body is trying to tell me other than "pizza is delicious," but I'm not too concerned. I don't eat it nearly as often as I crave it.

Tomorrow I will let y'all know how the first run with the new shoes goes. I'm thinking it will be magical, but I'm trying not to get too excited about it... like that's possible. Also, back in the pool tomorrow. Hopefully all of the extra people who were there last week are back at work or something - I don't care where they go I just want them OUT OF MY WAY. My broken toe thanks you for staying out of my lane.