Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Alea Iacta Est

This year's running has been in an on and off mood.

I started running on January 14, and proceeded with 10 miles a week. Knowing the importance of a plan to pursuit any given goal, I started without a plan. I attribute that to the high unnoticeable stress of the Seattle marathon planning.

My "plan" was to work on speed, but, again, there was no "plan" on how to get faster. So I just went and ran intervals in the treadmill until my HR was at its peak of 186 and I was about to puke. I didn't even log the events in a consistent manner.

Then I stopped for a week for no reason. Of course no plan to measure against, no remorse.

On Jan 28, on a chilly afternoon in DC I had my first outside run of the year. My out-of-a-hat plan was an easy 4 miles. Ran with my IwoJima guys and Fort Myer soldiers, and used my asthma inhaler every 3 minutes. After 1.5 miles before crossing the Potomac, I realized I forgot my gloves and my earband, and that I was dressed for a 65F weather when it was in the upper 30's. Should I return? My ears are going to hurt. No, I will not return.

I crossed the Memorial Bridge, said hi to Abe, and turned back. I was freezing. I wanted to stop and take a cab, but, NO!! I had to finish my 4 miles, so I did. Got a very hot shower and after 30 minutes my hands were still feeling the cold effect. (1) See below: Raynaud

Then I ran another 4 miler on Feb 2nd, and that has been the last time I've run. The week after, ALL our Seattle project team got sick including myself. Fever and a lot of coughing. Of course asthma followed. Another week passed. And another, and another.

So I am right now here back in DC thinking, Am I a Serious Runner? Am I Running Seriously? None of the above? What am I doing?

Well, I know what I am not doing. The Master Geek of Project Management wants to get faster without a plan, wants to have a 5K PR soon, but just because fast means shorter mileage, and 5K is way less than 42K it doesn't mean that plans are discarded...

When Ale and I started this journey we read together 101 Kicks in the Butt - Tips to get you motivated. The Number 1 was: CREATE A BLOG. And I was feeling that Chris, Petra, Shirley, Maddy, Jeff, Kevin, Michelle, Craig, and all my blogger friends could be saying: What's up with this woman? Thailand is over, the first month of the year is over, the second is about to be over, what is she doing?

Then I re-discovered America: I don't only need a plan but also a goal. Petra pulling strings for Chicago. Should I go? I don't think so. Last Sat I received at home the Seattle SeaFair Marathon information. Should I go for it? Not sure. Not sure??? What I am affraid of?

I am affraid to commit. That's it. Therefore, I am committing. And, before my blogger friends. I have 18 weeks to prepare. Plenty. As I want to improve speed and shape, I'll do the half.

I regret I didn't cross the Potomac this week. However, I crossed the Rubicon: Alea Iacta Est.

(1) I learned later that I got
Raynaud's phenomenon (RP). RP is a condition resulting in a particular series of discolorations of the fingers and/or the toes after exposure to changes in temperature or emotional events. Skin discoloration occurs because an abnormal spasm of the blood vessels causes a diminished blood supply to the local tissues. Initially, the digit(s) involved turn white because of the diminished blood supply. The digit(s) then turn blue because of prolonged lack of oxygen. Finally, the blood vessels reopen, causing a local "flushing" phenomenon, which turns the digit(s) red. This three-phase color sequence (white to blue to red), most often upon exposure to cold temperature, is characteristic of RP. Raynaud's phenomenon most frequently affects women, especially in the second, third, or fourth decades of life. WEIRD!!!!!!!!!!!


MarathonChris said...

Speaking as a fellow project manager - you need a goal, and you need a plan. Without a plan, you are right, you will just kind of run whenever, then get frustrated when you can't make progress.

So pick a goal race (like you have) and put together a training plan. Then execute your plan and measure your progress against it. Then share it with everyone else for motivation :-) That is what the PM in me would do.

BTW, in July I will be on a business trip to Seattle. We will run together!!!

Can't wait to see your plan :-)

MarathonChris said...

BTW - I am using Hal Higdon's Intermediate 10K program. I am currently in week 3 - my race is on March 29th.

ShirleyPerly said...

Hey, Lizzie Lee, great to hear what's been going on with you. A half marathon is a great goal to have. Doesn't require as much time training as a marathon does yet plenty of opportunities to achieve your goals for better speed and shape. Good luck training and hope everyone on your team is feeling better!

Petraruns said...

I'm with you Lizzie Lee - a goal is a great thing. It really does help - a the little piles of work you shovel do come together into a big mountain!

Backofpack said...

I must be the only person in the world to run with out a goal or a plan. Yes, sure, right now I have one and several goals and plans. But I ran for 13 years for no other reason than to run. 25 miles a week for the sheer joy of movement. I must be a running geek!

Susan said...

Way to go LL! A plan! A half is an excellent goal -- since it is a whole different world from a whole. Good job!

Kevin said...

Hey LL.. You hang in there girl. If you are anything like I am, when this nasty winter weather starts to break, your MOJO will return with the spring weather. Just hang on tight and get through winter. Not much longer now!