Sunday, January 2, 2011

2011 Up and Running

So after finishing out 2010 with a New Year's Eve 15 miler, I started the first day of 2011 with a 30 mile training run. Clea joined me for miles 8 thru 12, but other than that it was a solo run. Now I don't care who you are, running 30 miles solo is mentally tough. But that's exactly the kind of "suck it up" run I need in preparation for Rocky Raccoon.

It's just as much mental training as physical, and I'll repeat the same dose for the next two Saturdays.

The biggest temptation of these solo runs is always to drop the pace, and I was proud of myself for keeping it going and beating back the demons in my head who kept suggesting walk breaks.

I picked the marathon distance off in 3:40, and finished up the 30 miles in 4:16:39.


My nutrition plan consisted of a banana before I left the house.  And, er, that's it.  I purposely don't use any kind of gels or gu on training runs as my theory is that will allow me to get a bigger "hit" from them in races, but I've never tried it on a 30 miler before (yeah, my training ideas are not always orthodox).

I used one handheld (as I couldn't find my other one before I left the house), and refilled it at UT around the 25 mile mark.  It just about got me done, but I don't think I had much left in me by the end (especially after some guy decided to race me the last half mile to the mopac bridge - I'm such an idiot I can never resist those stupid challenges).

And I ate like a horse for the rest of the day.

When I got home, Nancy (along with Dylan) was kind (or sadistic) enough to give me one of her "elbow massages" while I wolfed down some breakfast burritos, oatmeal, and anything else I could get my hands on.  My left hip flexor has been painful for the longest time, and she found so many knots it was unbelievable.

I squealed like a stuck pig, much to everyone's amusement.

I haven't been for a massage in years.  Nancy's booked me in for one next week, and they're going to have fun with me!!!

This morning I rewarded myself for Friday's unscheduled 15 miler by staying in bed instead of doing the early morning 10 miles of road hills (with 28F outside and Dylan cuddled up to me it was no contest really).  Instead I headed out to Bull Creek about an hour later to do a 5 mile effort run on the trails.

And I felt great.  No soreness from Saturday's 30 miler, and the massage had worked wonders on my hip flexor!!!  And I realized how much I've been missing the ever-shifting puzzle that is running on technical trail.  I pushed the uphills and concentrated on visualizing my footing and running the downhills at pace.

You know those mornings where you feel so strong it's almost surreal?  Like the "king of the world" in a kind of Leonardo DeCaprio/Kate Winslett way?

Yeah, it was kinda like that (only without any lurking icebergs or Celine Dion soundtracks).

I rewarded myself tonight by making a delicious lasagne which included homemade marinara sauce, fresh pasta, mozzarella, parmigiano-reggiano, ricotta, artichokes, mushrooms, garlic, onion, bell peppers, lean ground beef and red wine.

Even Dylan had two helpings.

And as the wine had been uncorked, I saw no point in letting it go to waste.


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