25 miler = FAIL

On my planned 25 miler today I was listening to the Extra Mile Experiment. Chris Russell (I think) was talking about his half marathon simulation, and concluded that it was a failure. So was my 25 miler.

It actually was pretty warm compared to the past few weeks, about 25 when I started and 35 by the time I finished. However the wind was still whipping. And nearly 2 feet of snow does not dissapear over night. The roads were still totally covered, especially the side streets. So my option was to slip and slide on the side streets, or brave the traffic on the main road where there was less snow, but I had to run out in the traffic lane because the snow banks take up the entire shoulder. I did a combination of both. I'd run on the snowy side streets until the little muscles in my legs were screaming from trying to stabilize me. Then I'd run on the main road until I couldn't take being sprayed with slush, honked at, and nearly run over every 10 seconds.

Because of the snow, and because I'm bored to death of it, I didn't do my normal long run route. I did smaller loops near my house, which gave me an easy out. At 21 miles I was just done, mentally and physically. I'm really dissapointed with myself because I wanted to have 25 miler in bank to draw on for Antarctica, which I know will be more demanding than anything I've done before. Can I really do this??

Blizzard of 2010

I am supposed to run a 26 miler this week. And we got nearly 2 feet of snow over the past day and half along with gale force winds. The snow has stopped, but the wind has not. I shoveled for about 20 minutes (for once the town plow didn't deposit the entire street's worth of snow in front of our house), but other than that I have been lying inside reading and eating my way through everyone's Christmas candy for two days. I really want to get this run in tomorrow, so that I can get up to New Hampshire and ski with my sister for a day and still be back in Boston for New Year's Eve. I KNOW that I am training for Antarctica, and a little snow shouldn't scare me. I'm not scared of the snow itself. I am scared of the fact that the snow covers the sidewalks, thus forcing me to run in the road, where the Massholes make a sport out of trying to run you down.

Hopefully, I'll suck it up and get out there tomorrow, because I can't stand another day of sitting inside, doing nothing, and stuffing my face.

GU dilemma

I just got an e-mail from the Antactica tour company. Due to international treaty agreements nothing in a disposible wrapper is allowed, including GU. I've been experimenting with different fuels, including Hammer solid perpetum, and enduralyte, but I'm finding that good old GU or Hammer gel works best. The perpetum is too chalky and the liquid fuels slosh too much in my stomach. So now I need a way to put GU into another type of permanent container. IDEAS???

I have my 26 miler to do next week and I'm already dreading it. It just kills a whole day and my legs feel like lead for days afterward. This is my problem with marathon training, I HATE taking days off. Maybe if I could stop eating, I'd feel better about it, but that hasn't happened.

who is that masked man

I was just starting to feel okay running again. I didn't get to California until 2 am so I let myself sleep in a little Monday so I was actually running in daylight. Given that it was light out, I decided to run on the trail by the river here because I'm already bored to death with the loops through the neighborhood by my hotel. I was just getting into a groove (it took me awhile because my legs are still pretty tired because of my 23 miler this weekend) when I saw someone approaching me. My heart still leaps whenever I see someone else, but this time my heart about stopped. It was man wearing a black face mask. Exactly like my attacker.

It was 60 degrees out. I know Californians are wimps, but really. My heart was racing and my mind was whirling. In order to get to the rest of the path I'd have to pass him again. I got off the path and ran around the streets, but I had to get back on the path in order to get back. And then I saw him again. So much for a good run. I spent the whole time looking around and behind me.

Skiing, biking, and new shoes

I've been pretty running centric lately. Mostly because I'm in maraton training, but also because of my new schedule. Running is easiest when you are short on time and traveling. But last weekend I stayed in CA for the weekend and went skiing on Saturday and Sunday. I always forget exactly how much I love to ski. I like running, but it is not easy enough for me, nor am I fast enough, or painfree enough to think "God I love this," while I'm doing it. But that is exactly what I think when I'm skiing. I love the rush, the feeling of weighlessness.

Then Sunday, even though we rode in the cold rain against a nasty headwind I had a great time. On a bike you can go fast enough and far enough that you can really go somewhere. My Mom's friend Jaye had planned this awesome ride through the redwoods and along the coast on 101. Seeing from a bike was way better than being in a car. After we had a great dinner with the whole group that rode. There is nothing like slogging through the rain and cold to bring a group of people together.

Also last weekend I stopped into a running store that is right by my office here because they had a sign that said free gait analysis. I never want to wait at race expos, but I have always been curious. I was stunned by how bad my gait was, even with the heel lifts and superfeet. Holy pronation. So I guess it's not worth saving $35 and wearing year old superfeet and ancient drugstore heel lifts. I sprung for new shoes and a hard arch support. All week I've been a good girl and worn the arch supports in my sneakers and my work shoes, and my plantar fasciitis is improving. So fingers crossed.

23 miler on tap this weekend. Trying to decide if I should just get it over with when I get home tomorrow after the red eye, or wait until I'm more rested on Saturday.

You should know better

I was talking to a woman at the gym the other day and tolf her about my attack, because she lives nearby and is a runner I wanted to warn her. She said, "well you should know better than to run alone as a woman." The more I think about this, the angrier it makes me. First, it makes it seem like getting attacked was MY fault, which I don't think it in any way is.

I'm also really struggling with the whole gender issue here. Yes, I am a woman, but I have never seen this as limiting the things I can do. Yes, I like pink and pedicures, but I also lift weights and change my own oil. I can't reconcile myself to the idea that an unchangable part of myself would control what I can and can't do.

And not run alone? I travel 90% of the time and live on an island in Maine the rest of the time. It is practically impossible for me to find a running buddy.

Finally, I hate the idea I should be expecting people to hurt me or take advantage of me. I ran this morning at 5am and I was terrified the whole time. I jumped at every little noise and movement. I want to be able to trust people. I want to assume that most people are good at heart.

Am I overly naive?


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