Saturday, August 25, 2007

God Bless You Please, Mrs. Robinson

Phase II - Regressive Count - Week Fourteen
08/20/07 - 08/26/07
Week Total: 25.4

I just finished my 13.1 miles of training. Half-Marathon. Who would've thought?

Same route than my last long distance, from Seward Park to McGilvra, and adding a hilly area: E. Galer (upward slope, thanks God is short), and Madison (slight (?) upward slope).

When I was going through E. Galer I felt good, I felt however that instead of running I was snowshoeing. Then in Madison a "slight upward slope" that did not look slight to me, but it was delicious when I started going down the hill to reach Lake Washington Blvd again. Then coming back, the delicious "slight downward slope" became a "slight upward slope" and the horrible upward slopes became downward.

Luckily, my fastest songs were at this point with Mrs. Robinson with 183 bpm going down the hill. God bless you please, Mrs. Robinson.  I felt invincible when I got back to flat McGilvra. With 8 miles on my feet I said to myself: "Nobody can't stop me".

But 3 miles later I felt running out of gas. In top of that I was also running out of water. When I got to mile 12 I discovered that I still had 8 oz. so I took a GU and drank the bottle, and thought that I could run at a good speed, but it was too late. I couldn't. I dragged my feet for 1.5 miles. When I stopped, at mile 13.1, my legs were glycogen depleted. I couldn't move at any speed. I hit the wall.

My car was parked 1.5 miles from the 13.1 mark. I did that to force myself to cool down, but I barely could walk. After a while I recovered and walked with pleasure feeling the breeze on my face, meanwhile watching boats and people enjoying a pleasant Summer day.

I did not take walk breaks during this run, and I didn't gain much. I will maintain the breaks for the long runs to guarantee late, or no-depletion (if I
could only guarantee that!)

My interval work this week was good. I ran them (1' intervals) at an average of 7.52 min/mile without the recovery and 8.35 with recovery.

Again, I am amazed what a person is able to do. I compare my first week, 15 weeks ago, being able of running only a minute, after walking a minute. This week, my run of 7 miles looked to me like a short run.

My marathon time should be around 5:30. Not bad after a 9-year hiatus.

Thanks to my beautiful daughter Alejandra I am back in love with running.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Pouring Rain

Phase II - Regressive Count - Week Fifteen
08/13/07 - 08/19/07
Week Total: 22.8

It is not strange, rare at all, that it rains in Seattle. And we, Seattleites, not even during summer, are exempt of rain. But the pouring rain we had last Sunday was too much for a summer day, to the point I thought my training was gonna be under the universal deluge.

I went to Seward Park to run 12 miles around Lake Washington. As "raindrops kept falling on my head" the hood of my jacket was of no use. I was not successful either avoiding puddles. When I wasn't looking, my feet were just submerged in a nice big one. When I ended my mileage I was drenched. I was changing clothes in the bathroom's park and I felt like if I swam for a couple of hours on the Lake with my clothes and shoes on.

However, the experience was all positive. The probabilities that will rain during Marathon day are ALL, considering that 1) always rains in Seattle and 2) Washington State receives the highest rain fall
during November. So, training under rain for a Seattle marathon is a must. The smell of the rain and the rain in my face have always been a nice sensation to me. Just a handful of runners were around the lake and we felt that camaraderie of challenging the divine liquid. But better than everything was the Danskin Triathlon which route was in Lake Washington Blvd. It was really nice seeing hundred of women putting a lot of effort to complete it.

In another order, I bought a second pair of the wonderful Gel Kayano 13 and plan to break them in during my short runs.

Also, good to comment that I have had for 3 consecutive weeks, a pain around my left hip flexor. The doctor told me on Monday it could be a stress fracture... ???? I don't believe it. Of course, X-Rays were scheduled, with a possible MRI, depending on the results. What about a p
ulled muscle? or lack of stretching? That makes more sense to me. We'll see.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Music, Beats and Endorphins

Phase II - Regressive Count - Week Sixteen
08/06/07 - 08/12/07
Week Total: 24.4

Speed, Tempo and Distance as part of Phase II made me wonder how I would be able to do any kind of tempo and/or cover distances greater than 6 miles.

Music was the answer. Downloaded to my iPod more than 160 beats-per-minute songs which gave me the ability to push myself and keep a steady pace. Endorphins were working. I enjoyed the distance running on the external trail on Green Lake, which is 3.2 miles, a little bit longer than the internal, 2.8 miles.

On Sunday I ran 10 miles, my longest run ever. It went good the first 6 miles, but just a few yards before mile 6 I felt an acute pain on my left side. I believed I didn't digest completely my breakfast. After some breathing exercise the pain was gone. But, in addition, the music was a disaster. The hard beat songs were at the beginning, the slow ones in the middle, so my pace was all messed up. Need to work on that.

The metrics provided by Runners World Training Log tell me if my pace improves over time and over type of training.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Phase I - Done

Phase I - 10 weeks - Complete
05/28/07 - 08/05/07
Phase Total: 90.3 miles

Summary Miles per Week

Summary Pace per Date

I started 10 weeks ago running 3 miles per week nervous of how I was going to increase mileage during the second week.

Today, after 10 weeks, I have completed 90 miles. Many nice places & stories along the road. Traveling to California, Virgina, Washington DC, and back home to Washington State, made these weeks interesting and full of anecdotes.

Now I start the second phase that will lead me (I HOPE) to finish a marathon.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

No This, No That

Phase I - Week Ten
07/30/07 - 08/05/07
Week Total: 17.5 miles

Even though I am a very positive person, I surrounded this week with negative things.

Prior week with 16 miles ended badly. I was poisoned with an overdose of something I prefer not to mention. So this week started slow, and I did not feel well throughout. In top of that I had a bunch of No this, No that.

1) No husband: I came back to Washington to be separated again from my adorable husband who knows till when.
2) No short drives to work. I had to go back to the routine of driving 60 miles/1.5-2hrs a day to do the route home-work-home.
3) No water. I realized that during this week I drank only 4 glasses of water, 1 glass of milk, and 5 cups of coffee.
4) No food. I also realized that I had lost my appetite with the consequence of daily headaches. In top of that I realized that I have 9 more pounds that when I was 9-month pregnant with my Alejandra. This was a shocking revelation. So, I would like to have... 26 pounds less?.
5) No motivation of continuing running around Lake Serene, as the lap is too short. Having to run at least 4 miles per training day, I cannot see myself running lap after lap after lap.
6) No speed. Ok, I don't plan to do time but finishing, however I feel terrible slow. If I keep running slow, I would master running slow.

I could not fix #1 and #2 for the moment, so I put that in my pipe and smoked it.

#3 & #4 were residues obviously of my poison situation. I did not want to ingest anything. I attacked the issues forcing myself to have a bottle of water per hour and a yogurt or fruit every 2 hours. In regards my weight, I recognize that I am still thin and a lean person. However "the inexplicable weight gain" (READ: aging, perimenopause, GETTING OLD) is just killing me. I normally eat well, maybe around 1500-1700 cals a day, a lot of carbs, very little fat and my proteins. Eating less I cannot do. That would be unhealthy, so I would bear with the weight... Would I? I still want to get rid of 26 lbs.

For #5, I went during the weekend to Green Lake & Alki Beach. The former is one of the
"Seattle’s most beloved parks". With a running trail of 2.8 miles, it changes its character throughout the course. Alki is one of my favorite spots in Seattle. Also with a 2.8 miles trail, the run by the beach is accompanied by the sea-salt smell, the view of the sound with ships, boats, and sailboats, and the beauty of Seattle skyline.

For #6, even though I ran on Saturday about 3 minutes faster for a particular distance, Sunday was again slow... Something to think about it. Still 16 weeks to go

Nice Green Lake Aerial Picture from a Seattle guy studying at Ohio State.