Runners Brain

I always come up with my best blog posts when I’m running.  Sometimes I wish I had a little notepad to write down my thoughts, I guess this would by kind of hard though since you know I’d be running.  Or better yet, I could pull an Albus Dumbledore and pull my thoughts out with my wand into a basin.  Yes, I said with my wand.  I bought one this past October in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.  I was the oldest one by 10 years on the line, but whatever 143 Harry.

I'm Harry Potter!

 

Seriously though, how cool is this?

 

 

So anyways, I’ve been thinking lately about how runners are a different breed. Running is like another boyfriend or girlfriend.  Runners speak in different terms and get each other.  For instance, I would never snot rocket in front of my friends BUT in front of runners, totally acceptable. Right? Yesterday, while at work, I blurted out randomly, “OMG Two more weeks until daylight savings time”. Normal employees would not of understood me but fortunately enough, my friend Patty who is a cyclist, was right by me.  I started to apologize and explain why I was so damn exciting about it being lighter sooner, I’m a nighttime runner, and she stops me ” Bri I totally get it, no need to explain”.   Athletes of all types, get each other.  We understand the true meaning of  “the runs”, the need for an ice bath and/or ice cream after a speed workout, G.I issues, and why we don’t drink the night before a long run or race. I LOVE my running friends.  They get me and the insane way I think. Carbo loading Friday nights anyone?

 

So far, training has been going well.  The plan the I’m using doesn’t have any tempo runs, so I’m using the lighter run days( 3-5 mi) as them.  So far so good.  My goal pace of 9:10 seems a little out of reach. BUT I just need to WORK harder.  I keep telling myself “it’s supposed to be hard” “work hard now and the race will be easy”.  It seems to be working.  I’ve gotten my longer runs to stay under 10 YAY and my shorter runs are hovering around 9:20.  I still have 2.5 months more to go.  I’m trying to keep all positive thoughts.

 

In other news, I’m trying to find tickets for The Black Keys. I LOVE them.  They have such a different sound.  When I listen to them, I just picture myself bopping along with a beer in my hand, don’t you?  Too bad I decided to look for tickets after they went on sale.  MSG sold out, I guess I’ll have to buy some obscene price from StubHub.

 

So tell me, what do you tell yourself to get through tough/speedy runs?

 

Until next time,

 

Run Hard. Run Long. Run Strong.

 

P.S I had such a runners high yesterday that I almost hopped in the shower with my socks on. Totally NOT kidding.

 

My Running Anniversary

February 18th, 2011 was a huge turning point in my life. I decided to start running.  The night before, I asked my brother if he’d help me.  With a shocked face, he agreed.  Every night we were at the track.  It was freezing, not only was it February, but the track at our high school is located on a hill which means it’s windy as hell.  I remember the second time I went running, we literally had to stop so I could catch my breath b/c the wind was so bad.  As promised, the first two weeks were terrible.  I wanted to quit but my brother wouldn’t let me.  We’d drive back, him talking away and me pretending I was listening but inside I wanted to puke.  800M seemed like so much. Once I was able to run more than that, I became obsessed.  I wanted to run longer and farther.

Oh Hey Shalane. How'd this get in here again..

 

Every workout I had planned for me, I tried to exceed. Sometimes I wish I was still like that.  Don’t get me wrong, I love hitting milestones with running but nothing beats running my first mile.  I was SO happy.  I ran a mile without stopping, something I never thought I could do especially in high school. Every now and then I feel like I’m at a standstill with running, like I’m not doing enough or achieving as many goals as I should.  But then I look back.

 

  • I went from running 800m to running 13.1
  • A mile in 11 and change to 7:06 (something I’m still working on– I want a 6 in there damnit!).
  •  Ran a 5K sub 30.

How could I write about running milestones & not include Pre?

This past week, I finally did that last one.  No it wasn’t a real race, but I knew I had to do it before my “one year”.  The funny thing is, I ran without looking at my Garmin and listened to my body.  I ran at what was comfortable, I didn’t feel like I was racing. Next thing I knew, a 5K flew by and I look at my watch… 28:27. Yeah baby! That’s 3 minutes FASTER than my previous 5K time.  Goes to me that I need to RELAX at races and that I can run fast.  Normally when I glance down at my watch and see a low number I tend to slow down because I think ” I can’t run that fast”.  This was a GREAT start for week 1 of Half Marathon training.  Every run after that has been sub 10 min mile, except for this past Saturday.  Saturday on schedule was a 8mi LR.  One of my co-workers agreed to run with me and we decided to hit the trails.  She was going to run 5 & I made up the extra mileage by running there & back from my house.  This was probably one of the worst runs of my entire running career.  I felt like crap when I woke up but how could I bail? I had finally talked her into running with me and now I’m going to cancel? I don’t think so.  I told myself after the mile there I’d feel better.  Unfortunately I didn’t.  My stomach hurt and my legs felt like cement, I needed sleep.   We headed into the trails & it felt good to be back, atleast for the 1st mile.  I had to keep stopping.  I NEVER do that & we were running so slow– a 12 minute mile.  Don’t get me wrong the trails are pretty tough all rolling hills with a few steep ones BUT I used to be able to run them when I first started running at a 9:45 pace.  Shit. I felt like I was going to puke and on top of it, embarrassed.  I hate asking to stop but I knew if I didn’t I was going to throw up.  We took about 4 breaks and we only ran 4.35 miles together.  Horrible.  I ran home after and felt sick all day.  At first  I thought it was b/c I didn’t eat breakfast or drink anything before the run but I didn’t feel good the whole weekend and my body hurt.  Yesterday I got a massage and sacrificed my run.  I figured 3 horrible slow miles or a massage? After much internal debate, I went with massage.

Today  I feel a hell of a lot better, my neck is still bothering me, but I’m pretty excited for my 5 miler tonight.  I’m hoping for some more sub 10min miles especially closer to my HMP of 9:10. Wishful thinking. At least my two favorite shows are on tonight, Switched at Birth & Jane By Design. They’re both on ABC Family. No judging please.

It's Nicole's birthday today! Say Haaaapppppy Birthhhhday!

 

 

Until next time,

 

Run Hard. Run Long. Run Strong.

Perfect Timing

It just so happens that my day off lands on the day of the Britney Spears concert.  I promise this wasn’t planned at all… must have just been meant to be.  All I know is I have been waiting to see her since I was 16!!  The concert was beyond amazing, I wish I could watch it over and over again.  And Yes she did sing.

 

Do you think the amount of jumping and singing I did could equate to an easy day run?

 

 

Rain, Thunder, Lightning, Run??

I was itching to run all day today.  I felt like I just needed to get it out of me.  Unfortunately right before I was leaving work dark skies started to set in. I was praying for the storm to hold off until I got my run out, it was only two miles after all!  I drove up to the trails and ran in.  I know it was supposed to be a recovery day, but I just can’t seem to slow down.  It’s almost harder for me to slow down!! My legs were super sore from yesterday, but I think the fact that the sky was rumbling and started to light up I couldn’t let my run my interruptted.  This was MY run after all.  I finished in record time, yippee!, but I knew it I should have made it a lighter day the second I got back to my car.  My legs were s-h-o-t.  The second I got home I turned on the AC, I know I know diva, and stretched for a half hour all while watching The Secret Life of an American Teenager, at least that’s what I think it’s called.  The show totally wrapped me in and before I knew it my stretching was done and my legs felt connected to my body once again! Tomorrow, I have the day off. From running that is.  How much runners guilt do you think I’ll have?

Day 4- Early Morning Run

So I decided to get up at 7:30, which is early for me!, to get my run in before leaving for the city, it was friends 21st woo-hoo!  I attempted to stay in my development for my 6 mile run, but after the first mile I knew that wasn’t happening.  Since I’ve been running in my development for so long, I know where the tough spots are and where I normally get tired which to say the least, can be so mentally hard.  Before I even get to the hills I find myself slowing down and becoming out of breath because I know back when I started running, these were my troubles spots.  I keep trying to tell myself I shouldn’t be doing this, but I constantly find myself analyzing every little thing and counting the miles, which you know can’t be good.  So, at mile 3 I ran home hopped in my car and drove to some trails.

By this point the day was already heating up, I was kicking myself for hitting the snooze on my 6am alarm, I knew these last 3 miles weren’t going to be easy but I hit the trails with confidence anyway.  I remembered to bring my arm band, thankfully, stuck my iPhone in there and blasted Nirvana radio on Pandora, did you ever realize you work out better when you have angry music on?  I took off jamming out to some great music and woke the woods up with the raspy grungy voice of Kurt Cobain.  It was so beautiful to be in the trails in the morning,although I must have been the first one on the trails so I ran through all the spiderwebs first hand… ew.  Three miles came and went before I knew it.  I even stopped a few times to just take it all in, I felt like my friend Patty.  She does the same while shes on her bike rides.  It felt so nice and peaceful to just be there and breathe in fresh air.

Hopefully tonight I’ll stay true to my “5k” diet and don’t drink to much.  Gotta look and feel good for the race!

Day 3- 3 miles “easy”

After yesterday, I think I’m addicted to running in the trails.  Or basically anywhere but the route I’ve been taking.  I can’t believe how making a change in scenery can really improve my running.  I had been doing my runs in the same area for about 3 months now, which as you can imagine, became more mentally challenging the physically when I had to do my long runs.

So today, I decided to hit the trails for my 3 mile run.  According to my training plan, these were supposed to be at an easy pace.  I don’t know why, but I couldn’t hold back.  Maybe it was because I was on a new trail or I was just having a good day, but I just couldn’t run at an easy pace.  I ended up running at more of a tempo speed, which is running at a speed  in-between sprinting and a normal pace.  Needless to say, I was SWEATING.  On the agenda for the tomorrow is…. 6 miles! Should be fun 🙂

 

 

Day 2- 8X400’s… or so I thought.

So my run didn’t start off too well. I tried sneaking out the door without my brother knowing and of course as I was leaving, he was walking in!! Originally I was supposed to do 8×400 which is sprinting 8 times around the track. I got to 3 and was shot. Obviously I was very upset with myself and my brother said everyone has off days so we’ll try something else, which he says with a smirk on his face which I know all to well.

So he takes me to some cross country trails, makes me run down these 90 degree hills, okay maybe I’m exaggerating a little they were probably like 75 degrees but still!, and then do lunges up them 4 times. My legs were burning!! Then I stupidly told him I felt okay so he takes me deeper in the trails and has me do hill repeats on the SECOND highest point on Long Island!! Then I finished it off with a 1.5 mile cool down throughout the trails.

All in all, it ended up being a good running day and I learned to listen to my body. If I’m not feeling good doing a speed work out, I need to kick my own ass and do something else!