Monday, February 1, 2016

A Consistent Month

Training was consistent for the month of January.  After spending Nov-Dec battling some sort of bronchitis/atypical pneumonia stuff, I was feeling super frustrated.  I was constantly coughing up yellow and could not turn a corner, even after weeks and weeks of chilling out.  But, it finally went away, and and January ended up being a good month for me as far as getting in daily training.

And it is funny because I always stress when I get sick.  Sinus infections like me a lot, and every couple of years I get some sort of bronchitis that I can't shake.  I get so frustrated, and it always takes more time than I want to clear it.  But then I get through it and wonder why I even stress it.  It just is what it is, especially this time of year for me.

The upside is I actually do rest and take a good off season.  The downside is I feel bummed that I lose all of the consistent run miles that I built up over the summer and fall.  I went from 45-50 a week to 10.  I went from setting PRs, to being super slow.  AHHHH!!!  That wasn't really how I wanted to start my training for my next marathon.

But, by just logging something every day, keeping everything low key, and making sure I had no zeros, I feel like I am heading in the right direction.  Swimming is super consistent for me, and my arms are falling off.  I am enjoying my bike again.  Running is steady.  I am really reminding myself daily that it makes no sense to try to build back to where I was in the fall overnight.  It is not smart, and it is not necessary.  A little at a time will go a long way when done consistently.

Olympic Marathon Trials- February 13, 2016- 2 weeks away.

So, who else is sad that Ryan Hall retired?  Me.  Super sad.  He is absolutely one of my favorites.  I learn so much from him every time I listen to him speak.  Check out Bob Babbitt's latest podcast on him.

Well, at least the announcement of Galen Rupp toeing the line at the Olympic Marathon Trials is  helping to ease my disappointment with Ryan Hall withdrawing.  This is sure to be a great race!

I thought I would post some fun reads on OTQ women, if you are inclined to read about marathons.  These are some interesting women that are elite, but maybe not world class.  Some are moms, some used to run 4:30 marathons, etc.  One of the great things about running is that there is such an opportunity for the average person to improve, at any age, especially at longer distance.  Check some of these women out for inspiration:

Amber Green- Runner's World Interview

Salty Running:  Olympic Trial Coverage:  scroll through here and read all kinds of interviews with different women running the trials

Amanda Nurse:  Running on Om Podcast

Of course I really want to see Angela on that line, and I can't help but feel hopeful that she will attack it again in a couple of years after putting some cycling and swimming into the routine again.  I have a good feeling about her :)

Enjoy your week!!!

Friday, January 22, 2016

My Boston Floor

I just had to google the date of the Boston Marathon:  April 18.  Yup, that is how on top of it I am.  Just recently, I realized there was a decent chance I would be able to run the marathon.  I didn't think it was in the cards for me as Dave and I had been focusing on family expansion, and here I am towards the end of January with my same family of 3 (6 if you count the animals).  So, it looks like maybe I will be able to run Boston after all.

So, I booked my spot on the floor of a friend's hotel room this morning.  I promised to split the costs, and a floor is fine with me.  I love that I can roll like that, and thankful that I have friends that let me crash.  

I am now 12 weeks out.  It is really time to get my butt in gear.  I am out of shape.  I am up 10 pounds, and it is not coming off.  Actually, it just keeps climbing up.  I just texted my neighbor to see if I could bring my king cake to him.  I have to really start to buckle down here, and it always seems harder in the winter.  My mileage is barely in the 30s.  I feel kind of screwed, but not beating myself up about it.  

And it is interesting because I thought I was totally fine- like 100% fine- if I didn't run the Boston Marathon.  Maybe it is because the majority of the people I know have run the marathon, so I forget how special it is.  But my husband and mother-in-law both told me they don't know a single person that has run the Boston Marathon, and I would be the only person they actually knew.  It made it feel slightly more special, even though it is just a marathon per se. 

So with that in mind, I am going to see if I can go and use it as a celebration of all of my hard work and the decades of running that have brought me so many friends, travel, and opportunities.  I am not completely sure I will get to run it, but I do have my Boston floor reservation booked just in case!  And honestly, I really hope I do make it there!

My morning run with Bill, a perennial Boston runner.  Everyone bailed on us because of the impending "winter storm," which gave us a slight dusting of snow and perfectly good roads.  I was ready to sleep in too, but Bill wouldn't let me.  I feel the silent push from my friends to get my mileage up.    

Friday, January 15, 2016


I am swimming again.  I have never actually stopped swimming, but I am REALLY swimming again.  with Gil Stovall, my most favorite swim coach.  (Thank you thank you thank you Gil for coaching again!  I have been hounding, texting, and begging him to start up another program.  He is so tolerant of me- I am super grateful.)
If you are in Memphis and not swimming with us, I don't understand.  Come!  What an amazing coaching resource for us.  
So this is week two of 4:20am wake-ups, and I am still pumped.

Some thoughts the team environment and how it really brings me a spark of joy and enthusiasm:

It really hit me today how much I thrive in a team environment.  I have been excited to wake up, I love seeing my friends, I am focused during my workouts, and I am appreciative of my coach.  I was able to reflect on the fact that I have spent almost every day of the majority of my life in an athletic team environment.  Practice with friends is just what I did!  I am an intrinsically motivated athlete.  I can train on my own, race on my own, and do the work on my own.  But I find it interesting that as my opportunities to train with others have dwindled over the past few years due to losing our Master's Swim program and my schedule as a mom, my spark was a little dull as well.

But I feel like even in the past two weeks, that spark has really started to brighten!  My training has more purpose to it, I am working harder, and I am loving it.

And it makes sense.  When I started doing some of my running with my running group (the GeneralOWLS... lol!) this fall, my running spark was ignited again.

And the bike?  I can't remember the last time I rode with friends.  Maybe 3 x in the past 3 months?  Dull spark.

So, it is not that I can't train by myself, as I am certainly comfortable doing that quite a bit.  It is more that a team environment is a very familiar and fun thing for me, and has been for a long time, and I seem to enjoy it, so I am just in a happy spot and need to make sure I keep taking advantage of these group opportunities, because being with a team isn't a given as an adult.

And those were some thoughts that I had, as I left swim class super chipper this morning.  

And Isla and I are watching Nemo right now, so "just keep swimming" is certainly a good thought on which to finish the day.