training

Scotiabank Vancouver Half-Marathon Week 1 / 11

11.04.2016
Schedule: 
Strength + Stretch.
Distance: None. Comfy pants won this round. Way to start the cycle right!
Music: None. See above.

12.04.2016
Schedule: 5km run.
Distance: 5km mall-walked instead while waiting for Colin to pick me up  + 12km walked during the course of my shift = 17km.
Music: Whatever the mall was playing. Nothing memorable.

13.04.16
Schedule: 30 minute tempo
Distance: 6km. I have no current pacing ability. I was all over the place due to a hillier than recommended route. Next time it’ll be flat(er).
Music: Squamish 50mi playlist on shuffle. Highlights were Rage Against the Machine, Pearl Jam, and White Stripes.

14.04.16
Schedule: 5km run + strength
Distance: 5km + 7.5km during shift = 12.5km. Again, no pacing ability, but faster than I thought I was able to do a steady run. Baby steps.
Music: Pearl Jam, multiple albums on shuffle. Highlight: Jeremy – it played 2 x in a row.

15.04.16
Schedule: Rest (yay!)
Distance: 12km; 4hr shift + walking around for the rest of the day combined.

16.04.16
Schedule: 5km pace
Distance: 0.3km walking around my house because I did nothing but sit on my couch ALL day. It was great!
Music: N/A

17.04.16
Schedule: 10km long run
Distance: 9km long run. Terrible run. Ran from a training shift out at UBC back to Kits Beach. While the weather and scenery were good that’s about the only nice thing I could say about it… (The intramurals including 20 min HIIT session did not help my legs.)
Music: Pearl Jam, because I didn’t remember to take it off of that before starting.


If I’d Waited Until Thursday It Would Have Been A Month…

Greetings from the land of rain.  To quote How I Met Your Mother right off the bat, “You know what they call this in the ‘couve? Barbecue weather.”*  Autumn has officially arrived in Vancouver.  Well, it showed up a while ago, but it wasn’t big enough news to write an entire post about.  To be honest, it’s darn near winter.  They’ve closed the ever popular Grouse Grind which is apparently fun, but climbing 2800ft just for the heck of it still intimidates me!  And they’ve opened at least one of the local mountains for skiing/riding. 

I haven’t been blogging lately and it’s been kind of nice.  What kind of crappy blogger does that make me?!?  I’ve been reading blogs and commenting, but when you aren’t running it’s hard to come up with things to write about.  And, let’s face it, what runs I were getting in were either so short or so slow they would have been exceedingly boring to read!  Not too much has happened in the last month.  Ran a little, walked a little, worked a little, Spud dressed as Mickey Mouse for Halloween (3rd year, 2nd costume because he outgrew the first one).  That said, if you’ve been stalking my blog – coughmumcough – you’ll notice that the only updating has been to my mileage.  As of today I have run 936.38km/581.84mi.  I had higher hopes at the start of the year, but after burn out I’ll take what I end up with!  

Speaking of burn out I think/hope/pray that I’m over it.  While I am running I’m not getting out quite as much as I’d like.  Ideally I’d get to 4 days/week.  Right now I’m at 3 so it’s not much to add another day in there.  Having Spud in playschool really helps because I can get a longish run in on one of those days.  I thought I’d see what I had in me the other day so I picked one of the biggest hills to run up and over.  I proved to myself that, yes, I could still do it.  However, my hill training has completely gone to pot.  I wasn’t silly enough to try and run without stopping.  I did intervals.  I’m sure that all the drivers coming down the road (and up for that matter) were wondering why I was choosing to run up it.  At about half way I was wondering the same thing!  At least the downhill was fun.  After 1.7km up getting to run 2km down was lovely.  My shins didn’t quite think so later that day, but it wasn’t raining, the view was great and downhill is what I love running the most.

Fun gear I have bought/won since I’ve been away aka “nothing helps you get back into the swing of things like new running gear”!  

CEP Compression Socks:  I won a pink pair on Facebook at the start of October. You can never have too many pairs of compression socks.

The green socks are next!  And if not then the green sleeves!

Sugoi Midzero Zip:  I had time to kill one morning before work so I was perusing the aisles of Winners (that’s TJMaxx/Marshalls up here).  Usually I laugh at how crappy all of their stuff is – with the exception of their toys/books.  But I started looking in the women’s athletic section and was completely surprised to find a Sugoi top.  And a nice one at that!  So I had Colin stop by the next night after work and pick it up for me.  He had to go back the day after that to get one for my friend so we continue on our tradition of being twins!

There is no reason to ever turn down a deal as good as the one I found: $35 for a shirt that retails for $100.  It reminds me a bit of Grimace from McDonalds, but I’ll just have to come to terms with that.    

Any idea what he actually is?

All joking aside it really is a comfortable shirt.  It’s still a little warm – I was pretty hot in it this morning.  However, I’d much prefer to be too hot in the rain and soaking wet than wear my water resistant shell and have it not breath well enough.

Under Armour Recur Over The Calf Sock:  When I saw these at work I really wanted them!  They’re just this side of obnoxious.  The picture doesn’t really do them justice – they are fluorescent.  I’m not sure if I’ll wear them running (I’d need a new skirt since mine will clash terribly), but they seem like they’d stay up if I were to try. 

Let’s Talk Racing:

I registered Colin for a race this morning.  It’s the first half marathon in Vancouver (aptly called “The First Half“) in 2012.  I volunteered at it last year and it’s a well run, relatively flat course.  Unfortunately I am going to be signing up for the full marathon clinic and this was sort of Colin’s “fairsies” for that.  It took all of my willpower not to sign up myself at the same time.  Not only is it the first race he’s doing that I haven’t, but a ton of friends are running it too.  Alas it is now sold out so I will be a spectator extraordinaire come February.

Our plan after that race is to continue training for the BMO Vancouver Marathon.  It’s at the start of May so we’ll have plenty of time to prepare.  It’s a brand new route this year and I think it’ll be a nice change from last year.  We’ll register for this one in December since that’s when the price will increase and I really don’t want or need to be hit with an extra $20.

The “Fun Race” of the year will be the Seattle Rock N Roll Half Marathon.  We’ll both be running it.  I’m super excited about it since there will be many bloggers/Hood To Coast friends there.  I’m a little apprehensive about not knowing the route, but I’m sure I can suck up all the hills they’re sure to throw at us for 21.1km/13.1mi.  Thanks to Megan (who’s flying out for the race!  Yay!!!) for reminding me that there’s a $20 discount on Friday to celebrate 11.11.11!    

So.  That’s what’s going on here right now.  I can’t guarantee that I’ll write every day, but I don’t think it’ll be as long as this last hiatus/sabbatical/random disappearance.  Hope your running is going well too!  I appreciate you all for sticking around – except for that one person who left a couple of days ago (I understand, though, since I wasn’t here…).       

* If you’re from Winnipeg then it’s completely acceptable to say “The Peg”, but no one calls Vancouver “the ‘couve”.  Unless you’re a tool.


You Deal With Cold, I Deal With Rain

I am very fortunate that I do not have to deal with winter very often.  Here in Vancouver the season usually looks like this:
   
rain
rain
rain
rain
snow – everybody freak out that winter has arrived/city shut down!  We’re kind of a pathetic mess…
rain – oh, got snow tires for nothing… 
rain 
rain
rain

So, while I don’t have to deal with feet of snow (try a skiff) and extremely cold temperatures (maybe 0 C), I do have to deal with RAIN!  And there was plenty of it today.  I had scheduled a run with my friend Lindsay and she came over at noon.  She didn’t have her little guy with her, but I had Spud so he was bundled up ready to go.  When I looked out the window it was only drizzling.  By the time we got outside to meet up it was pouring.  On went the rain cover and then we were off.  I had thought that we were maybe in a pocket of rain, but no.  It poured the whole time.  I’m not sure when Spud fell asleep, but he was out for about half the run.  At about 4km I stopped caring about the wheel spray and puddles and just let my shoes get wet.  They’re now stuffed with newspaper in the hopes that they’ll be dry tomorrow…  In total we ran 11.38km in 1:28.  Not fast by any means, but I was pushing 60+lbs and we walked up a decent hill close to the end.  Despite the weather it was actually a really good run.  We haven’t been running together for very long so we’re still in a getting-to-know-you stage and we had lots to talk about.  It was great to have the commitment as I don’t really think that I’d get out the door (especially with a 3 year old) if I didn’t have someone depending on me!


Soaking wet once we got home – you can kind of see the difference in colours on my jacket.
Nice hair!  You can see from my two-tone shirt that my jacket lost all of its DWR/water resistant capabilities on this run!

TMB Is A Genius!

I have been trying for a while to come up with a coherent post about my fear of getting faster. It’s not really that I’m scared – I’m just very reluctant to remove the “slow” and “back of the pack” labels from myself. Don’t get me wrong, I’m nowhere near being considered fast. I still run a 6 minute kilometre (10ish min/mile) on my steady runs. However, I am faster than I used to be. So when I saw TMB’s post today over at Racing With Babes I thought, “She totally nailed it on the head.”

Here are the two quotes I identify with:

“I am starting to suspect it was because I “told” myself that that was the pace I could run.” Yup. Fear of change. I’ve always known that Colin will run at my pace (he’s obnoxiously faster). When we ran our last half marathon training he really pushed me to go faster and I must have dropped a good 30 seconds/km. But I haven’t had him running with me lately so I haven’t gotten that extra push.

“First, that if you want to improve, you need to be deliberate about your training. And second, if you want to improve, you need to BELIEVE that you can improve.” I’ve totally seen how training has worked for me in the past. I have improved drastically over the last year and a half. But I struggle with the second point.

So thank you Tonia. That second part of the last point is totally going on my fridge.

And if anyone wants to send me one of these, please do:


Turnaround Tuesday: Results Edition

Tonight, I think that I had a near-perfect run. See my last post for an explanation of my 2 week slump. That all seemed to go away.

Here are the stats:

Distance: 6.19km (3.85 miles)
Time: 37:11
Average Pace: 6min/km (9:39/mile)
Weather: Sun and wind
Feeling: a little slow, but was actually sub-6 for the majority of the time. To me that equates to awesomeness. Walked up half of killer (10% grade) hill, but totally okay with it.

Best part of the run, though, was when I got upstairs and Colin told me to open the blinds. It was POURING!  Good thing I was speedy…

Turnaround Tuesday

The last couple of weeks have been an almost, but not quite, write-off for me in terms of running. I’ve hit a slump in my training. Since 22 August I have run a total of 4 days. That’s right. 4 days. I can’t say that I’m thrilled with myself for this lack of motivation.

It all started on 22 August when I ended my 29km long run with a couple of awesome blisters. I made them a bit worse by doing hill repeats on 24 August (yay ripped skin) so I was under self-imposed rest until that weekend in order to get my 32km run in.

On the 29th I had a great 32km run – see how far I’ve come to be able to say that – and then… nothing. I backed out of my tempo that Tuesday due to a torrential downpour, skipped 10 x hills on the Wednesday since I would have had to do them myself, and didn’t run Thursday either. My last “run” was on Sunday. I was scheduled for 23km, but couldn’t get my butt out of bed decided to run with Colin (who’s been having IT issues of late) instead. Unfortunately that meant that we ran for about 5km before he was done and then walked 5km home.

So my training/distance for the last two weeks has been crap.

Today is the day I start fresh. No looking back and feeling guilty (well, not too much). Just moving forward and getting back on track. I’m starting with a lovely, hilly 6km tempo tonight. I had plans for speedwork tomorrow, but Colin’s able to make a few extra bucks working for a friend so I’ll try to get it in later this week.

And when I opened my mail today I found this lovely surprise inside:

Nothing like having the local money pit running store send you a dividends certificate! That’ll pay for my GU for this weekend’s long run.

Challenge Time

I am potentially crazy.

Somehow I’ve become a sucker for online challenges and I’ve signed up for two that will surely make me stronger, but also make me question my judgment at the same time. However, after sucking it up big time on the hills on my last long run I know that I need to get into this.

  • The first is being hosted by 5 Miles Past Empty and is a lunge challenge. That’s right… LUNGES. The bane of my existence during boot camp. Unfortunately they work wonders for making me stronger and helping with my hill training. Truth be told I think I’ve actually missed them. So the challenge is this: do lunges (at least) 3 x week from 10 August to 10 September. I’m already behind since I only signed up today, but I’ll have to get them in soon. I think I might be short this week as I’ve got hill training tonight to contend with. I have to post pictures of my legs, but couldn’t get anything decent in the mirror so Colin will have to take them when he gets home.
  • The other challenge is being put on by Jamoosh of Last Mile Lounge. It’s starts on Sunday and is a 13 week core workout to be done 2 or 3 times per week. Since I’ve come to the conclusion that I cannot motivate myself enough to start on my own (my exercise ball has been sitting in-box in my closet for over a month) I felt like I should at least have the support of strangers online!


So we’ll see how it goes. I’m sure I’ll post soon about my inability to walk, laugh, lay down comfortably, cough, stand…

Who knows, I might even get the guts to post pictures à la P90X for before and afters.