Sunday, January 25, 2009

What a difference a year can make

DMR team goofing off
It's now been a year since I started my blog, rolling back with the Terrier Invitational. It all started on a whim that more or less was a place for me vent out my frustrations, not thinking that I'd actually keep up with it. Then it turned into a way to keep family and out town friends or anyone else who chose to read up to date on that thing I call running. Now it's evolved to much more, for myself that is, for all the readers it's still the same. It's been a remarkable way to keep myself upbeat about how my performances have panned out and in turn I think changed the way I perform. My first couple of entries are pretty harsh, we are our own worst critics. I believe that there always needs to be a dose of hard reality, can't always be sugar plums and fairy tales, but it doesn't necessarily have to be so nasty and I've learned that along the way as I read back on earlier posts. I plan to continue this diary of a mad woman who runs lot and I hope anyone that reads it possibly gets a laugh, becomes inspired, relates to a story, or maybe just wants to know a chapter in my life that genuinely makes me me and happy (along with a couple of random entries that have nothing to do with running at all since my life is not completely consumed by running despite my slight obsession with it).

Coming full circle with the meet that left much disappointment a year ago, I'd never know I'd be where I am now. Actually I take that back because I knew I'd get there, it was the waiting out and not knowing when part that was most frustrating. Having already raced less than 5 days before, GBTC's Invite was Sun and open events for women at Terrier were on Friday, it was going to be interesting how things unfolded. I had a great race on Sunday so either my body would not be too happy about the shortened recovery time or it wouldn't care too much-it's a very fine line. After deliberation with my coach we settled on the 1000m then an 800 leg on the DMR on Sat. Usually I seed myself but because I was unsure of my event strategy I just sent Dave an email with my thoughts and he agreed then seeded me himself. When the reply email came back it had the seed time he entered me in, and my chin hit the floor. He had me entered in at 3:00, which isn't crazy fast but for me that was a bit over zealous since at the opening meet of the season I ran a 3:12. I am definitely racing much better than that but 12 sec is a lot for a quasi short race. Literally for the days leading up to the meet I played every possible combo of splits that I'd need to hit to achieve this. It's possible that this could have been detrimental to my psyche but I continued with the nervous twitter up until I stepped up to the line. As soon as the gun went off it all just dissipated and I just ran. I started off great but about the 600 mark I felt my body tense up, then loose it's ability to gauge where exactly I was going with my race. At 200 meters to go I gave in picked up my legs thought to myself it's only 200 meters and just heaved forward knowing it would be over soon. I crossed the finish line, looked up at the score board and saw my finishing time. 3:04.50. Wow I really almost did it! Dave wasn't so far off base. I took off 8 secs from a race only 2 months ago, as well as 8 sec from this exact meet a year ago. I'm not at all disappointed, oh no totally absolutely giddy, but I can't say that I ran smarter because the races were very similar in execution the difference is I ran faster, a plus, it's a good thing that the 1000 is not my race. Like I mentioned in the interlude I do have to look at the reality of it.
The hardest part was over, but I still had Sat morning to contest with. I made sure that I did everything possible so that my body would be recovered for the relay-a cooldown, stretching, chocolate milk for protein to feed the muscles, plenty of water, a good balanced dinner, a couple Ibuprofen for preventative swelling since I wouldn't be able to get an ice bath in adequate time, and a night's rest. I woke up with all seeming well, moseyed on down to track to tackle the 800 leg of the DMR. I must have done something right because I managed to run a pretty decent leg. Big leaps from last year.
Flotrack was at the meet again

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pass me a paper bag and a shovel

What an interesting day, all starting with Sat night. I had my usual work day on Saturday but it ended in a bit of an off tone. First I didn't get out of work until quarter til 12 (am) which is not so uncommon, not common either, except for the fact that I was only waiting for one table to leave and it wasn't my table. That's neither here nor there. I get home around midnight, I was hoping that I could get a decent night's sleep, haha, apparently I was mistaken. As soon as I curl up into bed my stomach decides that it's not in a good mood. Oddly the same thing happened on Thur night too. I have no clue what's brought this on since I was fine on Friday, so that ruled out a bug and I didn't eat anything out of the ordinary. Needless to say I was up for a good portion of the night. Fast forward to this morning. I woke up feeling a little better, but very weak, uncertain if I was up for racing today. At around 8:30am I got a call from my family letting me know that they weren't going to make it due to the snow, no worries plenty more meets no need to trek through the snow from NH for a meet in MA. I just figured they were getting pummeled with snow. I finally got up, fighting the temptation to just blow off the meet and stay in bed all day, and made my usual pre-race breakfast of toast with PB and coffee. Then I look outside, there's a white out. Holy cow I thought we were only supposed to get 1-3 inches all day, there's already 3+in and it's still falling at a heavy rate. So that's why the fam wasn't coming, not only was it probably snowing up there it's blanketing the city here. Okay so the toast and coffee settled in my stomach, good sign, but I was slated to race a 400/800 double at the meet, not good. I was entirely too weak to pull off both races so I called my coach and told him to scratch me from the 400, then we'd see how I felt after my warmup as to whether or not I'd race the 800. I warmed up, did drills and what have you, still a bit off but I decided to race anyway. I figured if I had to drop out of the middle of the race I would, not that I ever use that as an option, this was an exception. I had a teammate Laura in my heat with me who helped to ease a bit of the nerves. Up to the line, on your mark, set, *bang* and I'm off. I'm off fast, a little too fast, 33 for the 1st 200. Leading I ease back the pace, 400 hit 68, kept steady, still in the lead hit the 3rd 200 in 37, then came down the last 25 meters and was edged out by my teammate. No big deal, I was happy for her since this was her first race back from being injured and she out kicked me fair & square. I did have other things to be excited about I FINALLY broke the 2:25 barrier that I have been stuck at for the past year. I finished in 2:22.55, crazily on a sour stomach and bad night's sleep, impressive. Wondering what I could have done if I was on a good day. Can't change that, on to the next meet. Afterwards we started cooling down inside around the outside of the track but part of it was blocked off so it was proving to be a bit difficult. Figuring out that neither of us were going to race any more events I suggested maybe going outside and running in the snow. She was aboard and we took to the snowy half plowed/shoveled sidewalks of Cambridge for a beautiful serene scenic cooldown.
It was a long day but it was good. That was until I got home and had to shovel the sidewalk and attempt to unbury the car. Leave that for next day.

Scene overlooking the Charles

Saturday, January 3, 2009

To double or to not double

Photo by GreaterSnap

Sometimes we do things that we really aren't all that too excited to do, but we do them because they are "good" for us. One of those many things is racing races I really don't have a fond liking to or racing a double that just seems way out in third base. Today's meet was no exception to that. While chatting with my coach at practice Tuesday what I should race for the last of the mini meets, I had asked him whether I should race either the 800 or the mile then possibly a workout afterwards. He promptly replied yeah I think a mile, 800 double would be good workout. Okay I'm certain I clearly said or in the statement but he was adamant that I should take on both. I kind of sulked and reluctantly caved, deciding to race both. It's not that I question that he doesn't know what he's doing, because he definitely knows his stuff, I wouldn't ask him if I thought otherwise. I more so question myself and if I'm able to really do it. A bit of self doubt creeping in. After all the woe is me self-pity, I can't believe I'm doing this insane double I ended up racing 2 really good races. I pr'd in the mile (5:26--YAY!) and ran even splits with my ever so favorite kick to boot. Felt amazing. Then came back and raced a not so shabby 800 almost breaking that 2:25 line, where I've been stuck for the past year. Though I was deceived at first since hand timed by my coach he had me in at 2:24.9, but the actual results had me at 2:25.14, so I originally thought I had a double pr. Oh well. I was just floored that I could turn out both races without blowing either one or the other. We got workouts and races turning over which makes me super stoked and more faithful that 2009 is going to be a good one.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy 2009

Here's to a new year...May everyday be blessed with with love, happiness, family and friends!