Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Icebreaker Indoor Half Marathon

My first race of the year was the Icebreaker Half Marathon held at the Pettit Center in Milwaukee, WI. I went into this race feeling a little undertrained but confident that I could maintain a good running pace throughout. This race was going to be a test for me to see where my body and mind were at. I haven't done much speedwork and figured I would be around the pace I have been pacing at with my Winter Warriors group, which is 10:30 - 11:00. I felt really tired up until the race and perked up finally right before we started.

This race is a mental challenge to begin with as you are running laps, 47.5 laps to be precise. I was hoping I could maybe run with Rachel again this year to make time fly by but I discovered she was slightly more prepared than I was for it. Start game face mode......

Rachel, Me, Matt & Sarah
I tried to keep an easy pace to start, there really is no way to judge your pace in this race without doing lots of math. There is no current pace to refer to on your watch, you see your lap times and overall times each lap around but again, who wants to do all that math. It's a great race to learn how to run by feel and not rely on gadgets. You have nobody to blame but yourself.

The first 45 minutes went by pretty quickly and then I started to get bored. They had tons of signs up around but many of them had too many words to try and read while running by and not tripping. There was music playing from what the runners requested on their race entry, but I noticed I didn't really hear it or just zoned it out. I really only remember one point when some guy ahead of my was jamming out and going crazy over a song that just came on. Likely this dude

I tried to find ways to distract my mind as I told myself I was not allowed to stop and walk. If I felt tired I would just slow my pace a bit until I felt better. I was thinking of my fellow warriors back home and trying not to let Rachel lap me several times! I mentioned to some spectators about 1.5 hrs in they were amazing, they stood on the edge of the mats the entire time and were there before we even started. That totally paid off as several laps they high fived me and gave me encouragement.

Finally when I hit 3 miles to go I knew I would have to slow up a bit as things were really starting to hurt, I had blisters on the right side of both my feet, and some pretty severe chaffing going on my arm. Why did I forget to body glide there? Oh yeah, only chaffed there once slightly during a marathon.
Carnage from three days later, this doesn't even do it justice.
Kim and Joan showed up about this time as well and it was great to see some friendly faces to cheer us in. Kim mentioned I looked strong yet and it was nice to hear even though I felt like I was starting to die. I really focused during the race to run with proper form and keep my body tall and not hunched over. This really helped me maintain a good pace and not use extra energy.

I am happy with my time and hope it will improve as I work towards losing some more weight and continued training.

2:12:29 (10:07 pace)
Division: 21/34
Gender: 36/62
Overall: 74/112

I got a couple of doozies from this race, thinking I may need to do a compilation for a year end post. Stay tuned!!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Work Hard & Play Hard

I have missed a few weeks posting due to some long work weeks. I focused on getting in my workouts around my job and it left no time for basically anything else.

I managed to have a great first week and then the long workdays slowly caught up to me and I listened to my body. By the third week, I was heading into my half marathon and wanted to give my body a chance to rest to have a good race.

Jan 5-11
Running: T 5 mi, Th 4 mi, S 9 mi
Cycling: M 10.6 mi, W 10.55 mi, Su 13 mi
Swimming: T 1200 m, S 1600m
*Missed my swim Thursday cause I forgot my suit, otherwise a perfect week!

Jan 12-18
Running: W 3.1 mi, Th 5 mi, S 7.8 mi
Cycling: W 9 mi, Su 15.3 mi
Swimming: S 1600m

Jan 19-25
Running: Th 5.2 mi, S 13.1 mi
Cycling: None
Swimming: None

I have really been enjoying mentoring for the Fleet Feet Fox Valley Winter Warriors program. I have rediscovered my love of running and has put everything in perspective. I have thought about where I started and how far I have come. My runs have turned into motivating others and just enjoying being outside. I have met some great individuals and they have inspired me to keep being positive and find the good in any situation. It has also kept me accountable and completing my runs every Thursday and Saturday.

My weekends have been full as well. The first weekend I went out to celebrate Sarah's birthday.

The second weekend I took my sister's older two kids out to Monkey Joe's in the afternoon to burn off some energy and treated them to some froyo. She was able to enjoy a peaceful house while the youngest was down for her nap.

Both Sundays I was at the bar watching the Packers playoff games, after I got my ride done in the morning though! That way I didn't feel so bad about drinking a few beers and eating some bar food.

This past weekend I ran the Icebreaker Half Marathon in Milwaukee and then headed down to IL to have a ladies weekend to celebrate my mother in law's birthday. We went out to Chicago Improv and had some good laughs, good food and some fun shopping. Now I have to put together what I bought at Ikea to help organize the house better!

I am looking forward to my job slowing down to have a bit more down time to be able to reflect on my progress and work on my goals. I also need to get a training plan set in stone for my HI (half Ironman) in June. I have been reviewing many different plans and I think I'm going to consolidate a few of the ideas together based on my abilities and working to better my cycling.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Week in Review

This past week was the start of my journey towards a Half Ironman, I was freaking out for several before and after I clicked submit on that registration! Coming off of being sick I eased into the week and tried to listen to my body without pushing it too hard.

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 5 mile run with the Fleet Feet Fun run group, this one was freezing! I couldn't feel my fingers for about the first two miles, thankfully we turned away from the wind shortly after.

Wednesday: 13.3 mile ride on the trainer. Had the day off of work and was picking up and organizing the house as well. Nobody likes to start the new year off with a disgusting house. My husband and I were boring for New Years and stayed in, but we enjoyed a steak dinner with some green beans and baked potatoes.

Thursday: 2 runs this day. Run #1 NYD 3 mile run with the pacesetters and breakfast afterwards. This was brutally windy and we froze our butts off.
Run #2 Winter Warriors Group Workout - Pacing 4 mile run. Thankfully this was about 20 degrees warmer than this mornings run, so I of course overdressed. I felt tired going into it but once we got started I felt great. I used my extra energy to push my group to a solid 10:15 run, they weren't as enthused about it as I was!!

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: Winter Warriors Group Workout - Pacing 7 mile run. I woke up to the sound of snow plows, we finally have snow on the ground again! It was only about 2-3 inches but it made the run a little more challenging searching for the best footing. But it was beautiful out. We also passed the Pacesetters group run and I got to see more running buds!

Sunday: 13.60 mile ride on the trainer. Needed to get a long ride in, went for 45 minutes and that was all I could handle:

Things I did well this week:
1. I spent a few hours cooking on Sunday afternoon so I have homemade meals for the week.
2. I wrote down my training plan for the week and a few meals to make during the week
3. I cleaned up my house and I have kept it clean. Slowly trying to purge and organize and keep it that way!

This was boring I know, but part of what I missed with blogging was having a training log. It will also help me keep on target for future weeks.