MarathonMaiden's Blog

October 12, 2010

Remember The Name. I’m a Racer!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 12:43

When in doubt, DON’T

Benji Franklin

Well if I’ve learned anything this fall it’s to not doubt myself.

 

I'm so glad that I have ppl who tell me that I'm (and I may be paraphrasing a bit) HOT SH!T 😉

 

Aaaaaaaaaaand I’ve also learned that partying with your childhood friends the night before a race might be a good idea.  Because that’s what I did the night before the Tufts 10k.  In all fairness we were celebrating my bestie’s birthday.  I tried to cut out early.  I always think that this is possible buttttt it never is.  Darn.  At the very least I tried to tame my inner Ke$ha 😉

While I’ve always maintained that my best runs come after a late night I don’t think I’d EVER think about applying it as part of a race strategy.  Live and learn right?  Or not because, as you’ll see, things turned out most excellent.

I drove back to my hometown on Sunday afternoon.  I was meeting up with Lacey beforehand and we were heading into the race together and my mom’s house is closer to the spot we were meeting than my apartment.  So I figured I’d get more sleep this way.  Well, I ended up getting WAY less sleep than if I had stayed put because of said party.  But it was fun. And I got to see peeps I hadn’t seen in awhile.  If anything it was a good way to take my mind of off the stuff that’s been making me mopey lately. No regrets.

Anyway. I met up with Lacey and we headed into Boston together. It was our one year anniversary as we met for the first time at this race last year.

 

Picture from last year's Tufts 10k. AKA the first time we ever met 🙂

 

I feel like I’ve known her forever though!

Pre-Race

We actually got there pretty early (if you’ve been reading for awhile you’ll know that last year I had to hop a fence to make it to the start on time!). It was a noon start and we hopped off the T around 1030 in time to pick up our bibs and goodies.  There was SO MUCH FREE STUFF.  We didn’t hit up the expo until afterward (and literally loaded up our bags) but there was tons to see.  We, of course, sat down and tried to relax/get amped up.

I also put a ribbon in my hair, which Lacey tied the bow for and then said “Now you’re a real girl”.  Gee thanks 😉  I also wore my black spandex booty shorts and a black tank.  Because I truly believe that (in ANYTHING in life) how you dress is how you’ll preform and affect how you feel.  So that outfit = bamf.  And I had a pink bracelet on and the ribbon to soften it.  I may or may not overthink these things.  Oopsies.

The announcer started calling everyone up to the start and we headed to the very beginning of the 7:00 pace group.  I’ve never actually seeded myself that fast before.  It was all Lacey’s doing 🙂

But it was cool to actually be able to see the elites (because this was a national championship for the 10k) in front of us as there weren’t many women in front of us in the 6:00 and 5:00 pace groups.  Someone sang the national anthem and BOOM we were off.

Race:

Mile 1: 6:36 (6:36)

“Ummmm this is fast.  Can I hold on?” and then “ummmm this is close to my 5k pace. Holy #$%@” I was just trying to keep up with Lacey early on.  My lungs felt like they were on fire.  I developed, what I call, “smokers lung” and my lungs stayed COLD for the rest of the race. (in fact, as I sit here Monday night typing this my lungs still haven’t felt back to normal.  Boo.) And I lost my headband which threw me off for a second.  Oh well. 

Mile 2: 6:35 (13:11)

I tried to pull ahead of some of the women in front of me, as they looked fast and I wanted to pass them.  It was really tough but I wanted to keep trying to hold onto this pace because I wasn’t quite sure how long it would last. I just kept chugging along and I do remember thinking to myself that “after the first mile my body will adapt to this pace”.  Hey, I can dream right?

Mile 3: 6:51 (20:02)

Suspiciously close to my 5k pr time.  I definitely remember being SCARED of this thought as it meant that I could really DOMINATE this race.  Or I could crash and burn.  It wasn’t even half over at the 3 mile mark! Especially since I really felt the slow and the fatigue creep in.  Hence the almost 7:00 minute mile.

Mile 4: 6:55 (26:57)

Another bit of a slow mile. But I should say that my strategy going into this was a fast first 2, hold for 2, kick for 2.  So I can’t be too upset with this mile.  And it was still sub-7.

Around mile 4 we had to do a hairpin turn and then run the opposite way of where we just ran (on the other side of the yellow lines of the road.  If that makes sense)  As I turned and passed the 4 mile mark Lacey was headed the other way on the road and as we passed each other we slapped hands and said something to each other.  Likely this was along the lines of “keep it up” or “push it” and it lifted me immensely.

Mile 5 : 6:35 (33:32)

Another thing that lifted me immensely was picking off people.  I’ve also learned this fall that I’m WICKED competitive.  So picking off the women in front of me was a BOO-freaking-YA.  It made me feel really good to be going so fast.  Of course my legs hurt a bit but I’m truly a long distance gal and the longer I was out there the less my legs hurt.

And as I passed the 5 mile marker there was a little boy, maybe kindergarten age who was yelling personalized things to the runners.  Mine was: “nice ponytail”! Which made me chuckle and I turned to give him a big thumbs up!  I was also running down same area as Boston Marathon, and at the Comm Ave / Hereford intersection I remembered pushing hard there.  And it gave me some kick to fight home.

Mile 6: 6:37 (40:05)

I rounded the corner to the finish at mile 6 and I got maybe halfway down this stretch and was KICKING the heck out of the course.  I was probably close to a full out sprint (or at least as close as I could be after the effort) and Joan Benoit Samuelson was being announced as crossing the finish line (she ran a 40:30 I think).  Which was cool because she is FAST and I wasn’t too far behind.  Of course, she had just smashed some marathon record the day before in Chicago (2:47:50!!) and was not running her “A” game here.  But it was cool nonetheless.  As soon as she crossed the line she turned around to high five all the runners coming in, like she always does at this race.

But during this final stretch I was determined to not let any of the women pass me.  And I actually passed one or two myself.  Which is exciting. And made me push through the fact that my legs didn’t want to run any faster.  But I made them dammit.

Total: 41:27 (clock)

41:23 (watch)

41:20 (chip) 6:40 pace

This is a 3:49 minute PR

Age Group: 41/1594= top 2.6%

Overall (and women because it’s a all women race): 72/6690 = top 1.1%

OH SNAP.

Post-Race:

So I’m VERY proud of myself for this race.  I really wasn’t feeling it mentally.  Like I’ve said (and it’s probably come across in the tone of my posting lately) I’ve got a lot on my mind lately and being able to focus on one thing RACING is hard.  Concentrating on one thing PERIOD is hard. Granted this worked out for me in my 5k where I really let my mind wander but I’m happy that for 6.2 miles my mind was on racing.

And I’m happy with how I executed it too.  Like I said above, my strategy was go out strong and fast for the first two miles, then hold on for the next two, then kick it to the end.  And my splits reflected that.  The next step is obviously holding a strong pace for the WHOLE 6.2 miles 😉

I will say that, as happy and on cloud nine as I am, my pace (6:40) is not that much faster than my 5k PR pace (6:26). Hmmmm.  I don’t really know what that says.  And my legs didn’t feel drained and completely done-zo at the end.  Another hmmmmmmmmmmmmm. Especially since I met up with a high school running buddy for some “easy miles” which *felt* easy but were at 8:00 pace.  And since I had a big mileage weekend beforehand (silly weather being so tempting!)

Oh well.

I’m extraordinarily happy with how my fall “racing season” (if you want to call it my three — untrained for and not really planned — races) went.  I smashed records (my own of course 😉 ) left and right.  I may have a Jingle Bell 5k that I’m thinking of doing in December but all my “serious” races are done and over (as the December one would be a costume-y one. YAY).

But seriously.  I learned another thing this fall: I am a racer. I live for this. Granted every single time I step to the starting line I want to back out.  But I don’t because I love the thrill of pushing myself.  And the feeling of wanting to vomit because apparently I want to do it every time I cross the finish line.

Therefore I want y’all to

Remember. My. Name.

This is 10% luck,
20% skill,
15% concentrated power of will,
5% pleasure,
50% pain,
And 100% reason to remember the name!

October 11, 2010

YAY for the Tufts 10k

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — marathonmaiden @ 22:25

 

Blurry because I'm running so fast!

 

I’m going to be mean and just share that picture.  Lacey has a mini-report up already but I’m still writing my full recap.  Suffice it to say that I did well.  Very well. How well you ask? Check back sometime tomorrow (Tuesday).  Yes I am that mean.

Even though I appreciated the good lucks and confidence comments you guys gave me.  And this is how I repay y’all 😉

But I’m also exhausted.  Racing takes SO MUCH OUT OF ME.  It’s a completely different kind of tired.  A most pleasant one I might say.  So I’m off to bed because my eyes can’t stay open anymore.

September 27, 2010

I Guess I Complain A Lot About The Weather…

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — marathonmaiden @ 13:57

…so I’ll try not to. Because things really are feeling great right now.  It’s a nice refreshing feeling considering how run down I was last week.

   

I am OBSESSED with this movie at the moment all the time. And this might be the best line ever.  Although I did watch this movie last night and all the lines are really good. I’ll very likely be quoting it all day.   

But the real reason I feel like I actually am taking crazy pills is because of the weather here in New England! On Saturday (the day I went apple picking) I was in a halter top, shorts and my flippy floppies.  And that night I went out sans jacket.  

But Sunday and today? Ummm total sweatshirt weather.  Not that I really mind because sweatshirt weather is awesome but the back and forth weather is getting old.  Granted I should be used to it because I’ve lived here my entire life but nope.  Not so much. Silly New England and changing the weather every 5 minutes! 

The weather this morning when I got up was NICE.  AKA no complaints — yet 😉   

Cool, cloudy, 60*, 80% humidity and misty conditions.  Luckily there was no rain but I woke up in the middle of the night, because I was cold and wanted a comforter to be cozy under, and it was POURING out.  I’m glad that it stopped before I got up though and I’m glad that I got to fall back asleep listening to it.  Sleeping while it’s raining is so nice.   

And the weather conditions made for a very fun and muddy run.  I tackled my pathway again and because it’s a dirt path my legs got all good and dirty.  Even though I always shudder before I leave my door thinking about messiness once I got started it just felt hardcore to be out there.  There’s definitely something liberating about having dirt and mud caked onto the back of your calves.  And I think it’s even better that it wasn’t actively raining because my feet got to stay dry!   

(from google images)

 The run:  

  • 1st loop: 4.1 miles @ 8:45
  • 2nd loop: 4.1 miles @ 8:40
  • 3rd loop:     2.3 miles @ 8:14
  • Total:              10.5 miles @ 8:37

I saw a lot of “hardcore” people out this morning.  Normally I see a mix of people who are really booking it, to those just plodding along, to walkers.  I felt like EVERYONE was running hard and INTENSE.  Naturally this made me want to go and be intense too.   I even got caught up in a “race” with some guy on the path.  He blew me away but it was fun to get caught up in the energy that was out there!

Not exactly mission accomplished with being intense myself because my pace was my easy pace but it put some pep in my step.  This made the first loop of my pathway not that bad as normally the first loop is always an “ugh I have to do this again?!” type feeling. But I really felt strong and wanted to be out there for those first miles, which for me are always the toughest. And this let me hammer home the last smaller loop.  Wooot to ending on a strong note 🙂   

It also made me feel better about my thinking that a marathon is what I want to tackle next.  At first I wasn’t sure if I was just getting pumped and jealous of everyone who is running a fall marathon but, after this weekend and this morning, I think that I’m making the right choice.  Like many of you commented, I knew that I’d be back for another marathon.    

Just annoying that I got this bug in my ear now with not a lot of options when it comes to picking a race.  I really don’t want to wait for a spring race and knowing my luck there’ll be a nor’easter on race day.  Then again, I risk that even in April / May. 

This image sends shivers down my spine. (from google images)

But in the time being I need to wise up for the Tufts 10k which is in TWO WEEKS (!!).  After my really great 5k last weekend I gave myself time to not do any speed work. Which was probably good and what I needed but now I’m thinking that there’s soooooooooo little time to really focus for Tufts.   

So this week I’ll likely do the hill workout that I skipped out of this weekend and another fast interval-esque workout.  I’m debating between the workout I did prior to the 5k ( warm-up, 2 miles hard, 1 mile easy, 1 mile hard, warm down) or changing it up to something unknown.  There is a track nearby so I was thinking of maybe doing something there.  But I don’t really know what yet.  I’ve gotten lots of suggestions from you guys so I’ll look them over but if anyone has a MUST do workout let me know! 

I probably should get back to the clinic and wrap up this semi-aimless post hahah!  The neurologist that’s in right now needs some help with the electronic medical recording (EMR) because she’s a new volunteer provider and is a little unsure.  I might not end up doing any recording but I’m surely not going to pass up an opportunity to be in with patients! 

Check out the giveaway from Miss Zippy. Or don’t because I want it!

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