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Monday, August 25, 2014

The Good, Bad and Ugly of the past few weeks

Lets start with the good.

I got two AMAZING runs in while on vacation in Maine. The island where I was staying had some serious elevation (one of my runs hit both 4 feet above sea level and 93 feet above sea level, and fluctuated between the two often!)

The first run, I had some issues right off the bat with my phone not finding the GPS signal, and not giving me accurate information while I was running. I got a few "Speed: Not Moving"followed by crazy fast times. So I just kinda ran an out and back at a comfortable pace. It was our second day on the island and I figured it was a good way to get acquainted with running on the island.

Since I didn't really know where I was going, I just kept taking the left option at every fork I came to, regardless of whether it took me higher or lower. I was rewarded with some awesome long climbs, some stunning views, the discovery of where one of the "Swimming quarries" was, and (right around where I decided to turn around) finding one of the working farms on the island.

On the run back I stopped to take a picture of one of the stunning views, but other than that, I did not have to stop or walk at all on the run. I felt comfortable during the run. I was able to enjoy the views, and reveled in the distinct smell of pine forest and ocean air combining.

When I got back to the cabin I was pleasantly surprised by my distance. 5.34 miles. Not bad for my first run on the killer hills on the island.

The next run I got in was on Tuesday. My SIL was out and wanted to do a run, so I did a two mile out and back, dropped her off and then kept running. The first two miles ended up being really fast. I'm horrible at pacing and with someone else there, I naturally run a little faster.

She just started running, and hasn't done a lot of hills. I felt kind of bad when, at the turn around, she had to ask me to slow down for her. She hadn't shown any signs of needing to slow down before that, but I know how it is when you don't want to be the first one to ask for a break. She hung tough though, and finished out the two miles.

The views made the hills (mostly) worth it.
I dropped her off at the turn off for the cabin we were staying at and kept going. I ran until I ran out of pavement, then turned around and headed back. I was purposefully not avoiding hills, and when I was short of milage (I had a goal of five miles) I ran up and down the hill by the turn off for our cabin.

Both runs felt great. For the first time in...well ever...The hills did not sap my strength. I was able to power up them and (in the words of one of the running coaches I've had lately) "Float over the top." I felt powerful, and fast, and free. When I got home I was not exhausted or drained, I was energized.

I had plans for more runs on the island, but they got side tracked, mostly, by all the good things that come with a huge family and lots of places to hike.

Now the bad.

I haven't run since the island. Not a single step. Part of it has been that we got incredibly busy when we got back, both catching up after vacation and preparing for the next out of town excursion (This weekend, to Chicago, for my BROTHERS WEDDING YAY!!!!) The other reason is....

The Ugly.

I seem to have somehow injured myself. The day after the last run I did on the island, I noticed a shooting pain going up my shin when I walked. It was most notable when I was going down stairs. I didn't think much of it, figured I'd rest up for a day or two, and it would resolve itself. Except it hasn't. I still notice some pain when walking, and still get shooting pains up my shin when I'm going down stairs (landing on the balls of my feet.) I don't have time to see the doctor this week (see above note about my BROTHER GETTING MARRIED!!!!) so an accurate diagnosis will have to wait, however, I'm not taking any chances on making it worse. I'm going to try for some short runs this week/weekend (I really want to run the lakeshore in Chicago while I'm there.)

I'm almost definitely dropping out of the half marathon training group I'm in. With less than a month to go, there is no way I can sync back up with the plan and follow it through to the half marathon.

I think, if I heal up in the next week or so, I can get myself ready for the race on my own. Maybe. That's a call I'll have to make closer to game day. We'll see.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Back to Life, Back to Reality

We got back from Vacationing in Maine last night. I have so much to post about, I need to get it all organized and do a huge post.

There was a lot of hiking, relaxing, and lobster eating.

I actually managed to get two runs in during the week of vacation. That makes me a real runner, right?

Monday, August 4, 2014

A good couple runs, and a scare.

So I'm not doing the greatest keeping the blog updated...But I am managing to keep most of my running schedule.

Wednesday there was no run. I really do not have time for a run on Wednesday, even with trying to get up early. I get up, the kidlet gets up, it's all over.

Thursday, I hit the treadmill late, around 8:30, after the kidlet was in bed. I had four miles on the schedule, but I had missed a seven mile run on wednesday, so I decided to see if I could cram in some extra milage. I started out keeping the treadmill on "slow and steady", but I was watching Fringe, so whenever an exciting chase would come on, I'd bump up the speed and cruise for a bit. I really wasn't trying for any sort of speed or interval pace, so I guess you could call this a Fartlek run? I ended up hitting five miles right around one hour in, and realized that it was getting late. I needed to get off the treadmill and try to wind down enough to fall asleep, so I called it at the five mile mark.

Saturday, I was supposed to go to the Long Group Run, however, I was in rough shape when I woke up. Friday Night we had opted to go out to dinner with friends, something we haven't done in a long time. It was awesome to get out without the child for a bit, however it resulted in a late bedtime (11:30) and apparently a hangover (Two drinks, really?!) So I spent Saturday recovering.

Sunday, I did my postponed long run. I had eight miles on the calendar. I started out on my normal "long run" route, from my house to my parents. The first mile sucked, and then I got into my rhythm, and the next four miles felt awesome. I kept thinking about the last run, and how awful it felt, and how much of a difference the weather made in my run. It was cool, humid, but cloudy, so the humidity didn't feel awful.

Around mile six I started having to work for it. It wasn't awful, but I made the decision to deviate from my normal route (Up off the canal path through the village and to my parents house) mainly because of the thought of facing the long uphill at the end. I decided to stay on the Canal path past Pittsford. Right after Shoen Place in Pittsford, the trail stops being paved and turns into a really nice, freshly graded, gravel path, with plenty of shade. I finished out my milage doing a short out and back along that part of the trail, then called my Dad for a pick up. I ended up walking an extra half mile-ish to meet my Dad.

I ran the 8 miles a little slow (average pace 13:24) but I ended feeling good, and without walking.

Then the scariness happened. So, I have some sort of undiagnosed vertigo problem. I've been to the doctor several times to figure out what it is, but they've, so far, been unable to figure out what causes my occasionally intense bouts of dizziness. The most recent thought was that it was migraines, sans pain. Last night, well after the run, (and a shower, and dinner, and grocery shopping), I stood up from the couch, walked about three feet, and promptly realized I was about to pass out. I managed to hold onto the baby gate between our living and dining room and put my head down long enough for the Hubs to come over and "help" me to the floor. I was sitting, leaning against him when I apparently did pass out. I came to lying on my back on the floor, with a very worried Husband checking my pulse. The dizziness was in full effect after that, and I ended up just going to bed super early to try to shake it.

I do not believe the dizziness was related to the run, although it may have had something to do with the soreness in my shoulders and back from carrying the camelback. However, this is the first time I have actually passed out from it, so I'm going to be calling my doctor and pushing for some answers.