Tuesday, September 19, 2006

For the Record

I'm still here. I've just been busy. You know how it is.

I arrived in Washington, D.C. from Lake Tahoe at 10:30 pm on Labor Day. Those cross-country flights are starting to get old. Over the summer, I've been back and forth to California four times. Yep, you read that right.

Since returning two weeks ago, I have traveled to Philadelphia on business, worked long nights, and run with the desperation of a woman who sees the MCM as a freight train bearing down on her.

This blogeroni serves, in a way, as my training log. So, for posterity, here are my most recent training runs:

* Sat., Sept. 9, Lake Tahoe: Hilly 20-miler at +7,000-ft. altitude. Went out super-slowly because I wanted to enjoy this run. I ran at a 10:35/mile pace for the first 10 miles. Pleasant. At first. But now I think I ran too slowly. At Mile 13, E. met me with a bottle of Gatorade. At Mile 14, I thought, "When is this ever going to end?" Picked up pace. Miles 15-20 were tough. Started cussing a blue streak at Mile 17. Scared two bare-chested skater dudes with scary tats on their back. They zoomed by, giving me wide berth. Total time: 3:19. Ugh.

* Tues., Sept. 5, D.C.: 4-mile run on the Capital Crescent Trail. My first run at sea level in almost two weeks. Total time: 32:15. Meant to be an easy run, but went faster than I expected. Felt effortless.

*Thurs., Sept. 7, Old Town Alexandria: 5-mile run at night, in my neighborhood. All went well until a little after Mile 2. My stomach rebelled. It heaved and roiled like the open sea. Ran quickly to the public library, which was [thank god] still open. Spent quality time there. Ran back without incident. Total time (excepting bathroom break): 45:00.

*Sat., Sept. 9, Del Ray, Alexandria: I yet again woke up too late to join my marathon-training group. So ran a hilly 5-mile course near my house. Total time: 44:33.

*Sun., Sept. 10, Del Ray/Mt. Vernon Trail: 14 miles. The first 8 miles were uber-hilly. Used more energy I thought, and by Mile 12, I was veeerrry tired. Wanted to lie down on someone's green lawn and take a nap. Instead, I stopped several times to catch my breath. Total time: 2:15:22. Avg pace: 9:35/mile.

*Tues., Sept. 12, Capital Crescent Trail: 10 miles. Supposed to be a marathon pace workout. But my stomach, again, felt bad. I wondered if it was the extra cup of coffee or the Kung Pao shrimp for lunch. Burped. Definitely the shrimp. So I took it easy. The first 5 miles were at an avg 9:24/mile pace. Felt better the second half, even though I was going uphill. So ran a little faster. Avg pace Miles 6-10: 9:07/mile.

*Thurs., Sept. 14, treadmill: 6-mile speed workout. 5 X 5:00 at 5K pace w/ 5:00 jog intervals. I set the incline on the machine to Level 1.5. After a 1-mile warm-up, I ran the first repeat a bit fast: 7:24/mile pace. The other four repeats were at 7:30/mile pace. Felt tough, but totally doable. Energized at the end.

*Sat., Sept. 16, Del Ray: Damn it. Slept through the marathon-training group run yet again. Ran 5 miles in my neighborhood. Called it a day. Total Time: 46:00?

*Sun., Sept. 17, Del Ray/Mt. Vernon Trail/Arlington National Cemetery/Georgetown: 17 miles. I actually enjoyed this, because I just ran and didn't worry about pace. I ran my fastest miles at the end, using a woman in blue shorts as a pacer. Mile 15 was 9:23. Mile 16 took me 9:15. Mile 17 was 9:01. Total time: 2:42:01. Avg pace: 9:32/mile.

*Today, Capital Crescent Trail: 8 miles. My aim was to run 3 miles at tempo (8:05 to 8:15/mile pace), then at least 1 mile at marathon pace (8:35/mile). Here's how it turned out:

Mile 1: 9:28 (warm-up)
Mile 2: 9:20 (more warm-up)
Mile 3: 7:43 (um. way too fast.)
Mile 4: 8:08 (that's more like it.)
Mile 5: 8:15 (okay, but starting to get tired. Also uphill.)
Mile 6: 9:57 (recovery jog)
Mile 7: 8:49 (Supposed to run 8:35 but lost focus. Also uphill.)
Mile 8: 9:32 (cool-down)

In between the runs, two days a week, I lifted weights or took a cardio/weights class. Whew. Okay, done with the run updates. Hmm. I feel a bit under-trained for the marathon. We'll see.


  1. Well - I'm exhausted reading about all of those runs at once. I'm pretty sure you'll be fine.

  2. Your schedule sounds like hell, but you seemed so relaxed and looked great on Saturday!

  3. I could almost have kept up with you on miles 1-10 of your tahoe long run! and let's face facts: you are never going to run with your marathon group!! I hear ya about the MCM train--it's a 'comin'. those pace runs on the trail are a KILLER--i told ya those uphills on the way back--not. fun.
    Carry on!

  4. under trained??!?? you're a running machine! keep us posted!

  5. Welcome back Bex! Nice variety of runs there. Looks like you find ways to mix it up - distance and location. I'm stuck in a rut going around and around the neighborhood!

  6. At least you're putting in the miles and variety. What I'd be fretting over (if it was me) would be the routine/consistency of the workouts and your prep for them. Are you practicing your race mental approach?

  7. Wow, great recap. Way to scare those skater dudes! I also swear when I'm running, usually when I think no one can hear me, but sometimes they sneak up and I don't realize they're there.