August 12, 2011

Who am I and what did I do with me?

I took a rest day from Monkey Boy workouts yesterday. The most I did was a shop-a-thon in the morning, and homework/gaming in the afternoon and evening.

While I wrested with questions like "what three factors could change a company’s international IT strategy, and what do they entail?" Monkey Boy borrowed my car and headed out on an overnight to see friends at Ohio State. He's on his way back now, so we did not get our sweat on together today either.

I got caught up in classmates responses to the above question this morning, so didn't get to the pool in time for my usually Friday routine. I decided instead to test out some gear before Sunday's race. I also had to test tape on my foot, where my shoe has been giving me hot spots on my longer runs.

I set out thinking about a 6-miler, so brought water but not fuel. 5 minutes into the run I realized I didn't really know how far the route I'd planned would take me. I also worked out that I would need to run at least 8 miles to adequately test out the tape job, since it's in the 8-10 mile range that my foot starts to hurt.

When I got to the head of the street, I did not have the light to take the turn I'd originally planned. Instead of waiting for the light, I took the corner and headed off in the completely opposite direction.

This entire run was weird (for me). First of all, why am I going out on a 6 mile run 2 days before a race? Normally I would be doing 3, maybe 4 at the most. Then, who am I to start changing up routes and distances mid-run? I NEVER do that! I plan ahead, fuel for the distance, and map my route before leaving the house.

So there I was, heading in the opposite direction from where I'd originally planned, working out in my head how far each intersection would take me. I was fully set on at least an 8-miler at this point, so started thinking about how to fuel this new distance. I knew there was a gas station at 185th, where I could buy an Almond Snickers (I always carry cash, just in case). I'm a big fan of Snickers, even though I rarely eat candy or even sugar any more. I've heard Snickers are the best fuel for long runs, and sugar on a long run is definitely within the dietary plan.

To get to 185th, I had to run about a half mile without sidewalks. I ended up running on the grass. So now not only was I running blind, unfueled and without a plan, I was practically trail running.

I thought 185th might be about 4 miles out, so I could take the turn there and make this run into a big 8-mile block. It turned out 185th was just over 3 miles. I bought my Snickers and ate half in the store, enjoying the air conditioning. I packed the remaining half candy bar into my camelback, knowing I would want more fuel later in the run.

Because it was only 3 miles and I'd decided on 8, I did not turn at 185th. Instead I headed on toward the next major intersection, which is 156th. When I hit 4 miles at 170th, I did not turn down that side street as you might think. Again, I decided to fly by the seat of my pants. How much farther would the run be anyway? 10 miles? I could do 10 miles. I'm doing 10 miles Sunday, so why not today?

I have completely lost my mind, haven't I?

Jog Log told me I'd been on the road an hour at somewhere around 4.6 miles. Figure in the fact that I didn't stop the clock for my little Snickers detour. I ran the first 5 miles at about a 5mph pace. This tells me I have been selling myself short on those treadmill runs, when I only went 2.5 miles at 5mph pace.

By mile 5 I'd made the turn that stopped taking me away from home. The better part of 156th was unshaded, at 1pm on an day with a high of 83 degrees. This is another thing, because I remember early in the year not being able to run in 80 degree weather. Today felt almost cool, with the breeze and the shade. Well, almost cool except for long stretches in the sun. I started to feel the run at this point. I think when I realized I'd been running a 5 mph pace, I started pushing the pace a little more. I started wondering if I could get close to a PR Sunday. I know I can't PR, but I wondered how close I could get.

At mile 6 I started thinking about the best time to finish that Snicker's bar. I still felt strong. I was heading toward home at this point, though I didn't know how far away home was. I decided to finish the Snickers at mile 7.

Maybe I should have eaten the Snickers at mile 6. By mile 7, I was ready to walk while I ate my Snickers, and stopped at an open fire hydrant to rinse the salt off my face. I was near the bottom of 185th now, where I'd bought the Snickers at the top. My legs were starting to tire. I took stock and decided I could finish this run, but it would be at the expense of Sunday's run.

Turns out it was almost exactly another 2 miles to get home. I walked those 2 miles, and I'm completely ok with that. 
Post run.
This tank is the consistency of a burn-out T, with wicking material. Though tighter than I normally wear a tank, it is very cool and comfortable. I planned to wear the purple version on Sunday. Then I looked at the weather forecast.
According to, the storms are supposed to be over before the race starts, and additional storms are not supposed to start until about the time I expect to finish. We will see what really happens. Generally, it's going to be about 70 degrees, so I'm thinking a super thin tank is not the best option for this one.

The main reason for a longer run today was to test out the tape on my foot. I used the bargain basement Kinsiology tape I'd bought at Discount Drug Mart a few months ago. It didn't work well for taping my knee (which has been much better lately, knock on wood). It works wonderfully for taping my foot to protect against rubbing. The elastic quality means I do not feel restricted in any way.
For the record, this is what the hair is supposed to look like.

I'm heading out to pick up my packet and enjoy Friends Night Out with Superman and Monkey Boy. I do not feel any worse for wear from my adventure run. I definitely have to start rethinking the limits I've apparently imposed upon myself.

Check in Monday (or maybe Sunday night) for a race report. I don't have any time goals, as I know I cannot PR this race. I can do 5 miles at goal pace, but not 10. This race I'm going to use Monkey Boy's pre-workout supplement both before and during, in my fuel bottle. I'm going back to Gu for fuel, but will use the Recover e21 for electrolytes. I will not drink the race Gatorade (or Heed, or whatever). I am more curious about how all this will make me feel, rather than how fast I will go. The race is pretty much 5 miles uphill, then 5 miles down. I should be able to negative split it, if nothing else.

1 comment:

Teamarcia said...

Good luck and have fun at your race--can't wait to hear all about it! Yum! Snickers sounds so good!