Changing it up

October 27, 2011 § 1 Comment

The past couple days I had some challenges on my plate. In addition to my usual daily battles of “how to not be hungry all. the. time” and “how not to attempt to fulfill that hunger with twizzlers and chocolate,” the challenges were:

-A BIG week of training

-One that must be completed while travelling to Huntsville, Alabama for work

-A quasi-unknown schedule due to work travel

I am not done the first one – in fact, I’ve just begun to scrape the surface because I have some long hours to put in this weekend.  But, I am on my return trip from Huntsville where the last two days were surprisingly productive thanks to Andrew who gave me all the info I needed on the Brahan Spring Natatorium.

Wednesday afternoon I was able to get to the pool right at 4:30 when public lap swimming became available. I even had a whole lane to myself for my long pull set before I headed out to the streets of Huntsville for a run. Andrew also pointed me in the right direction here – literally. He said to run East from the pool. I had a moment of disorientation though and ended up running West at first….but I soon realized my mistake as I began to notice the “questionable” landscape around me. While sidewalks were a little scarce at some points, running East was much more fruitful. I then met Andrew and his friends at Jason’s Deli for their weekly dinner – naturally all of his friends are badass athletes themselves!

This morning Andrew was a trooper and met me at the pool earlier than he probably would have otherwise since my work schedule was calling for an early day. Not open to the public in the morning, he took me in to the Master’s practice time where I had my own lane once again and was able to knock out my 30 x 100 set! The downside was I was swimming in yards (usually I swim in meters) so I felt slightly off; nonetheless I was able to get the job done before 6:30 am! Win.

While I am definitely someone who likes their routine – my pool with the schedule I know, my running routes, etc – these days of travel ended up being a good change of pace and allowed me to change it up a little. It was fun to swim with Andrew too – I think the last time we were in a pool together was the spring of ’08 so it has definitely been awhile! And I know I wasn’t knocking out 4300 meter days back then 🙂

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Science Project

October 25, 2011 § 1 Comment

For the past couple months I’ve been drinking a lot of Nuun at work. Since I had been watering my plant from my cup, and I am apparently too lazy to refill the cup with plain water first, the plant was also drinking a lot of Nuun.

Recently we realized that my plant had grown a mutant limb!

Now if only I can get Amelia to drink some Nuun for experiment #2…..

Sometimes….

October 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

Your saddle comes loose when you’re leading a half-ironman with 20 miles left to ride….so you just stand for the last 20 miles.

-Your girlfriend brings you compression socks instead of arm warmers by accident and you have no choice but to ride 3+ hours in the cold with bare arms (oops….I am so sorry about this one!)

You take a wrong turn and lose the lead. But you still push to try to get it back.

You just want to wear a tiny pink leopard print dress.

Just a little Friday reminder that people are out there doing what they do and getting the work done even when it’s not easy! Happy training this weekend 🙂

Monday Monday

October 17, 2011 § 1 Comment

Last week started off pretty slow. Taking it day by day due to my groin left me time early in the week to distract myself so I didn’t get worked up over not being able to run yet. Some of these distractions included:

-Tweeting at the Baltimore Run Festival. It was brought to my attention that anything tweeted with the pound tag of “baltrunfest” would be displayed on the Baltimore Sun website as they came in. Naturally, I had to tweet….and wait…and watch….and then screenshot it when I saw it pop up. Yes, distracting myself is this easy.

-Reading Kona Race reports from some friends on the blogosphere. The next best thing to getting to go out to Kona myself is getting to enjoy the day by tracking some ladies who I compete against and respect! It’s not easy to find girls who manage it all – work, life, and training – and these girls do it while being super fast. Check out their Kona reports here: Haley, Libby, and Katie.

-Wondering things like “how is it that I always try to pull the keys out of the ignition before putting the car in park?” and “how do I always forget if the URL addresses use the “\\” or “//”?”

Before I knew it, Friday hit and I was able to run a little and get back on track. I am coming off the weekend feeling like I got hit by a bus (a training bus of course, driven by the one and only Hillary B.) and am looking forward to my massage tonight; though I don’t think that will cure the windburn on my face from the weekend ride!

Running Group Love – a Oiselle Contest!

October 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

In 2008 I graduated from the University of Virginia and moved to Baltimore. One of my first orders of business was to find some friends to run with. After some extensive googling and blog stalking, I ended up at the blog for Team That’s What She Said.  They meet on Monday nights at 6:30 in Federal Hill, Baltimore. I still remember that first night I showed up — I think I barely said more than two sentences to anyone and was just the creepy girl running alongside the 8 minute pace group!

But I did notice that these girls were clearly good friends and had bonded through running and beyond, and I wanted to be a part of it. So I kept going to that run, week after week. I even showed up to the track workout on Tuesdays and attempted that a few times! I can’t put my finger on the moment when it happened, but it did, and eventually I was part of the group. (Actually, it was probably the moment I wow-ed them all with my extensive abbreviation vocabulary and they were all super jeal and obvi wanted to learn some abbrevs.)

When I started thinking about one particular story I could tell about the running group, I wasn’t sure if I should tell about the Hubs of Fury outings (our biking-bar hopping extravaganzas) or Awards night (annual event in December). Or there is always Club Challenge (the yearly 10 mile race that we make into the most competitive event. of. the. year.) or the fact that the group has helped to stimulate the economy by eating their weight in Chipotle burritos after Tuesday Night Track.

But then I realized that it’s not one particular day or story that stands out. Instead, what does stand out is the consistency. The dedication. The devotion to one single thing: running. The fact that if nothing else, we understand that about each other and will be there for each other. Every single week. One single person or event doesn’t make this group so special – rather it’s the cumulative miles, of all of the people who come and go, that makes it special. I admit that this year I have been at this Monday night run less than ever due to my own training schedule, but it’s still nice to know it’s there.

I know you’re wondering by now where the contest part of this post is? Well, allow me to show you the money. And by money, I mean your chance to get a Oiselle Start Line Tee for everyone in your group! Click on that link (note: contest starts at 10am PST 10/12/2011 so the link will be live then!) to the Oiselle blog for more information, but in the meantime here are the details:

Oiselle wants to honor the running groups that keep us all going by meeting them and then randomly drawing one group to win Start Line tees for everyone in the group! To enter, post the following on Oiselle’s Facebook (or if you’re Facebook Free like me just e-mail the info to info@oiselle.com):

1. Running group (name or description)

2. Where are you?

3. Tell us about it! (Do you meet for speed, long run, are you all training for the same race, etc)

4. What’s your favorite post run activity?

5. Anything else you want to share.

I’m looking forward to hearing all about your running groups! Entries can be submitted until Monday. Good luck!

Womp Womp

October 10, 2011 § 6 Comments

I DNF’d the Army 10 mile this weekend. Certainly not the highlight of my racing career, that’s for sure. My morning was off to a rough start from the beginning as I lolly-gagged before getting on the metro and missed the first set of trains. That put me at the Pentagon approximately 13 minutes before the start of the race, having to still drop my bag (note: you do this outside of the security line; I wasn’t aware and lost about 10 minutes going through that line twice) and go to the bathroom before getting to the start. For a race with a bajillion people you think they’d have close to a bajillion bathrooms, but that was not the case. This pre-race gathering area was one of the biggest clusters I’ve ever seen, and the line for the bathroom didn’t move in the 2 minutes I opted to wait in an attempt to give it a chance. So, I pooped on the side of the road. Literally. I ran down the road, away from the start, found a patch of high grass, and did my business approximately right here:

Needless to say while it is slightly humorous now, it wasn’t at the time.

After that I had to warm-up en route to the start line, and heading up there I actually felt pretty good and proud of accomplishing everything in time for me to start with my corral. About 11 minutes after the gun, my wave started and I took off running down the left hand side of the road  to keep a 7 minute pace. My goal of 1:10 seemed reasonable to me given my training lately. From the start I felt a twinge in my groin and knew it wasn’t good. I tried to compensate for the loss of power a little with my right leg, but by the 4th mile I was falling off pace pretty hard and a 7:30 was feeling like a 200% effort. At mile 7 the pain was too much to really run or walk at all, and I made it to where Ryan was spectating and made the call to take the metro to the finish.

I am still in my 48 hours of sulking period I have allowed myself, but I don’t really want to elaborate on this any more than I have. I think I made the right call by stopping, and Hillary and I are not worried that a few days off will impact any plans for AZ whatsoever. Yes, it stinks. But, I’ll live.

In other news, some awesome things did happen this weekend. Ryan got his first win in a triathlon at the Waterman’s Half! It was really neat to be out there and I was able to catch him go by around mile 45 of the ride, then several places on the run. A W is always a neat thing, but the first triathlon W is even sweeter!

I also went 5/5 in my football picks this week. I played MDG through Bankrupt Bookie last year and managed to pull off a decent enough season to win some $$ in the final weeks. This year I was off to a rough start but maybe that’s turning around. My team name is AIOGTWMDGTY.

Wiggle Wiggle Wiggle Wiggle

October 5, 2011 § 3 Comments

I need to give myself a shameless public high five. Last week, I swam 19,800 meters.  According to Walter (I decided my Workout Log has a name) that is 21,653.54 yards. And this week I am on my way to swimming even more. In these two weeks I will pretty much swim more than I did in all of 2009 and 2010 combined!

So…how does it feel? Well, Ryan caught me at the pool as he was leaving and I was just arriving for my second swim of the day. Feel free to leave your own caption in the comments, but I think this pic says “but mom, I don’t wanna go to swim camp anymore!”

Seriously though, I can see how it’s a popular belief that swimming more is the key. I do feel myself getting stronger in the water, and I feel like a Transformer with my huge arms these days. I bulldoze through the water, and it is pretty sweet. By the way, in case you didn’t hear, bulldozers are really fast. They’re practically dolphins.

In other news, Oiselle RUNDIES have arrived!Such a great idea – what runner doesn’t like cute undies? With Christmas right around the corner, these are a great gift for that female runner in your life! Unless of course she’s your coworker or a co-ed friend in the training group or something. Then it might be weird to give her underwear. But sisters, girl friends, and daughters are all fair game….and don’t forget some for yourself!!  Thanks to Oiselle for the photo – I’m so jealous of the fun these ladies seem to constantly be having in the office. I will not confirm nor deny whose beautiful bum is in the picture, but check out Sarah’s latest blog post with her perspective on being one of the Oiselle models! Love it.

UPDATE 10/7/2011: I received my Rundies in the mail and in case you are wondering about sizing for your own order, I am a size medium. I am generally a size 6 for normal clothes, and for Oiselle I am a medium for shorts and tops for the most part, so they are true to size!

Oh, and while you’re on the Oiselle site check out one of their sale items – the base runner tee. I have both colors and these tees are SO SOFT and comfy and will match just about anything!

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