A Simple Running Log

July 29, 2011

Training for 7/29/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 7:29 pm

This morning, I ran my 17-mile long run. Last night, the stupid local TV stations kept reminders scrolling across the screen about a heat advisory for today, with tips to limit time outside and take frequent air conditioning breaks.

I understand why the TV stations do that, but I really wish they wouldn’t, because it made it feel that much hotter and that much muggier when I stepped outside at 5:45 a.m. to run.

I did a 10-mile loop first. I was having some real digestive issues today for some reason. I really don’t know why; I didn’t eat anything particularly greasy or sugary yesterday, which are my normal culprits, and I wasn’t dehydrated. But I had to duck into two cornfields and the woods in those 10 miles.

I had to go really bad again when I got back to my lane after the 10-mile loop, so I went in the house and used a toilet like a civilized human being for once. I was so drenched in sweat, I changed my socks and my shoes before going back outside. Running in wet shoes and socks can cause blisters. Soaking wet running clothes can cause chafing too, but I don’t ever seem to have a problem with that, thankfully, so I kept my thoroughly saturated shorts and bra. No need to make the laundry pile any larger than necessary.

I ate a pack of Jelly Belly Sport Beans and went out to finish off the run. I did OK for about the first half of my 7.2-mile loop. Then I started getting really bad stomach cramps. I didn’t have to go to the bathroom anymore, but my stomach kept seizing up. I stopped to walk off stomach cramps several times in the last few miles. It was a very slow 7 miles.

Overall, not counting all the time I spent using the bathroom, I ran 17.3 miles in two hours and 43 minutes, a 9:25/mile overall average pace. Eh, it could have been worse I guess. At least that run’s behind me.

Tonight, Clark and I are headed to the beach. I’m supposed to do eight miles easy tomorrow morning, which shouldn’t be a problem. Sunday, I have my final 5K of the summer series in Rehoboth, and the NASCAR race in Indianapolis is that afternoon.

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July 28, 2011

Training for 7/28/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:23 pm

Man, this is definitely a high volume week. I figured out between my 16-miler last Sunday and the 5K I’m running this coming Sunday, I’ll have run about 70 miles. I think that’s the most miles I’ve ever run in a week.

Anyway, today’s run was my weekly speed workout, a 40-minute tempo run. I took my 22-oz. bottle with diluted Gatorade as usual.

I did a mile to warm up, then ran a bit more than 5.3 miles during the 40-minute tempo, which came out to an average pace of 7:30/mile, what I was aiming for. It was very tough though, and I stopped to walk and drink some Gatorade about 25 minutes in before running the final 15 minutes.

I then did a five-minute recovery walk/jog, and then six 30-second sprints, with a minute of recovery jogging between each.

I covered my 8.2-mile loop in about an hour and seven minutes this morning, average overall pace of 8:10/mile. Not bad, considering the heat and the walking.

At home, I drank some chocolate milk and did a lot of stretching and foam rolling.

I hope my legs are up for my 17-miler before work tomorrow morning. We’re going to the beach for the weekend, and I’d rather do the long run at home, where I can do small, familiar loops and leave fluids at the end of my lane, instead of doing an 8.5-mile out and back and worrying about where I’m going to run and where I’m going to refill my water bottle. Then, I’ll just have an easy 8-miler to run Saturday morning, and the last 5K of the summer series Sunday morning.

July 27, 2011

Training for 7/27/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:52 pm

This morning, I did some ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting upstairs, and then I did 4.5 easy miles outside. It was actually a rather pleasant morning, for late July. The humidity wasn’t too bad and I felt really good once I loosened up after the first mile. I finished up at home with some barefoot exercises and stretching.

One month from today is the Bulldog 25K trail race in Malibu. I signed up for it in April after I saw it advertised in a special trail issue of Runner’s World and Clark and I decided we were going to be in L.A. that weekend anyway. It’s hot and extremely hilly, so I’ve been feeling pretty anxious about it, but excited at the same time, from the moment I hit “submit” on the registration form online. Technically, I’m training for the Steamtown Marathon right now, but the Bulldog is looming just as large in my mind.

Since I signed up, I’ve been getting e-mail updates from the race directors every now and then. Mostly they’ve just been reminders that the registration fee was about to increase, or advertisements for other L.A.-area trail races they put on, so nothing very interesting to me.

Then this morning’s e-mail arrived. There was some blathering about how the races were about to sell out (there’s a 50K along with the 25K) and a plea for volunteers. But at the end, there were some tips for heat training, to get acclimatized for the race conditions.

Pssshh, I thought. By Aug. 27, I will have been running through this nasty Delaware summer for three months. Did the race directors see the triple-digit temperatures around here last weekend, when I ran a 5K one day and a 16-miler the next? I have run almost every single day this summer, including several shorter races, and they’ve all been outdoor miles. No treadmill for me. I’ll be plenty ready!

I expected to see the usual “run early, carry fluids, wear light colors, slow your pace” advice.

Um, no.

This is what the race directors actually suggest:

— Run during the warmest hours of the day. Getting your run over with before the heat arrives will generally not help prepare you to run through the hot hours at Bulldog. (Wait, what?? I make a point to be done by 9 a.m. at the latest!)

— Train in darker clothing and layers to heat acclimate; wear light colored clothing on race day for cooling effect. (Sometimes I wear a black sports bra or shorts, does that count?)

— Be prepared to walk or hike instead of running on heat training days.  The pace is not important; only the time exposed to heat. (Come on guys, this isn’t the only race I’m training for here.)
— Carry extra fluid or stash fluid along the way. You want to train your body to consume more liquids and essentially become a “water filtering plant.”  Be sure some of your fluids are hypotonic (with electrolytes) or take electrolyte replacements. (OK, this one I’m on board with.)

— Turn off your AC in your house and car. (Our house thermostat is never set lower than 80 — close enough. And I’m not in my car that long every day.) 

Seriously, the whole dark, layered clothing and running in the hottest part of the day is stuff hardcore runners do to get ready for Badwater, a 135-mile race through Death Valley. I guess I should be thankful I wasn’t too overly confident in myself when I was filling out the registration form and didn’t sign up for the 50K.

Between this friendly little e-mail and the elevation chart for this race, I’m a little more freaked out now, thanks.

July 26, 2011

Training for 7/26/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:14 pm

This morning, I ran my middle distance easy run, a lap around my 8.2-mile loop. It’s still July, so I was still completely soaked in sweat when I finished, but I managed an easy 8:40/mile pace. I did some stretching when I got home.

July 25, 2011

Training for 7/25/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:14 pm

This is an off week for push-ups, so this morning I did some ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting in the steamy upstairs room before heading out for three easy miles in that steamy environment.

As warm and humid as it is today, it still feels like a cool spring morning compared to this past weekend.

Friday night, a friend of ours brought over some crabs and shrimp, and at 6:30 p.m., I was still sweating just sitting outside trying to eat them. I was not looking forward to running the rest of the weekend.

Saturday morning, I got up around 5:30 a.m. and let Pepper out. The sun wasn’t even up and it was still already way too hot to even step outside the door. But TK was at my house half an hour later to pick me up for the drive to Lewes, where we were supposedly running a 5K.

The little digital thermometer display on TK’s dash crept up to nearly 90 degrees by the time we got to Lewes at 7 a.m. We got our race bibs and event T-shirts. I did a mile around the high school track, where the race started and ended, to warm up. I was already sweating my butt off just after that easy effort mile; I didn’t want to think about how bad this race was going to suck.

We lined up at the start line on the track, and the race director announced he had been on the verge of cancelling the race, something he’s never done before due to heat, and the only reason he didn’t was because it would be too difficult to reschedule the 5K, since it was part of the summer series. He told us at least three times to take it easy. I believe his exact words were, “This is not a day to run a personal best. This is a day to just make it to the finish line and be glad you did something most people won’t.”

With that, we were off. We did a lap around the track and then left the stadium and ran through the parking lot to get to the highway in front of the school.

I was trying to take the race director’s advice and back off my normal 5K pace. I hit the first mile marker in 7:05, my slowest first mile in a 5K all year, so I was doing a good job, I thought. Of course, I was still in a race, so I tried to keep that pace going.

I had gotten a little hung up during that first part of the race on the track, and now, past the first mile, I was steadily picking off other runners. I had no idea where I was in the pack though.

About 1.5 miles in, another woman passed me. I watched her slowly pull away, but a little past the two mile marker, which I passed in 14:23 (7:18 second mile), I realized I was reigning in both her and another woman, and I might have a shot at getting past both of them. That perked me up a little.

I drew up on them as we were approaching the school, and caught them as we were running through the parking lot back toward the stadium. As we were turning into the stadium, I found a kick and blew past both of them and a guy they were also running with. I was out in front as we hit the track for the final 3/4 of a lap to the finish line.

I felt like absolute shit, but I’ve run so many 400-meter and 800-meter repeats, I knew I could gut it out. I sprinted the whole way around the track. I thought I heard footsteps right behind me, and even as I tried to run faster and pull away, they were right there. About 20 feet from the finish line, I realized the “footsteps” were really the sound of my race bib flapping against my shorts with every left step. I felt like a bit of an idiot, but it had pushed me to really pull away from the two women I had passed just before the track, by almost 15 seconds in that final stretch.

I finished in 22:06 — a 7:07/mile average pace, my slowest 5K time all year and a minute off my PR, but almost two minutes faster than this same race a year ago, when the heat index wasn’t already in the triple digits before 8 a.m.

My time placed me first in my age group, second woman overall and 25th overall out of 134 finishers.

I was pleased with my effort. I thought I raced pretty well, considering the conditions. That was by far the hottest day I  have ever raced, and probably in the top three hottest days I’ve ever run, period. I did a mile to cool down after I drank some water, for a total of 5.1 miles Saturday.

It was strange; after running that race and then cooling down, it didn’t feel so unbearably hot anymore. I actually felt pretty good sitting in the sun while they announced the awards.

Top three finishers in the F25-29 age group.

TK and I went to Cape Henlopen State Park after that. We got there at 9 a.m., and the sand was already too hot to walk on barefoot, the way it usually  feels at 2 p.m. on a normal day. We ran in the water every 20 minutes at least to cool off.

We had enough of the beach by about 1 p.m., so we went in Lewes to get some more of the homemade ice cream we had tried a couple of weeks ago. Then we stopped at the outlets so she could drop off a purse that needed to be repaired, and we went home, where I jumped right into the shower.

That night, Clark and I went to Salisbury and had Chipotle for dinner and Coldstone for dessert. I can’t remember the last time I ate that much ice cream in a single day, but it was good.

Sunday morning, I woke up before 6 a.m. to get in my 16-miler, which I was really  not looking forward to. I was on the road just before 6:30. I had my 22-oz. water bottle, filled with Gatorade and water. I drained that bottle as I ran my 9.5-mile loop and stopped at my lane to refill it with the rest of the Gatorade, which I had left in ice in a small cooler at the end of the lane. I also dropped several of the ice cubes both in my water bottle and in my bra and shorts.

I then ran my 6.5-mile loop to finish the run. The last four miles or so were so freaking hard. I was hot, my “quick dry” shorts were clinging to me like a wet plastic bag and my feet were soaked with sweat and getting tired of being rubbed by my soaking wet socks, which normally do a good job of wicking away moisture. I guess they couldn’t keep up with the torrential downpour of sweat yesterday.

I didn’t time my run yesterday, because I knew I had to take it slow and I’d have a much better chance of actually doing that if the clock wasn’t running. However, I got home just before 9 a.m., so I ran 16.1 miles in about two and a half hours, including one bathroom break and the quick pause at the end of my lane to refill my water bottle, for an overall average pace of 9:18/mile.

Back home, I said hi to Clark, who was still in bed, and he glanced at my sweat-soaked self and said “Hi, dumbass.” I really couldn’t be offended. I love running, but I felt like a dumbass for doing 16 miles in that heat yesterday. Oh well, it had to be done.

I was really glad to have that run over with. I had sucked down 44 ounces of fluids, including 32 ounces of Gatorade, during the run, but all I could think about was guzzling some chocolate milk. I rinsed out all of my clothes and hung them up to dry, and then went for the milk. I was still pouring sweat though, so after the milk, I didn’t even stretch before I got in a cold shower until I finally cooled off and stopped sweating so profusely. I later did some yoga.

The rest of yesterday was pretty lazy. Clark and I went to Rehoboth so he could get a new pair of sunglasses and I could get a gift card for my little sister, and then we went to her birthday/graduation party. Somehow, my parents’ farm missed all of the heavy rainstorms that were passing through the area, and it was a nice party.

July 22, 2011

Training for 7/22/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:50 pm

It’s oppressively hot and humid here right now, and the extreme heat warning is in effect for the whole area through tomorrow, which is making for some uncomfortable running.

Luckily, Fridays are just an easy few miles on a shady trail on my schedule, but even that sounded unappealing this morning. I went anyway. I almost left Pepper at home, because I was worried it was too hot for him to run even on the trail, but he was having such a panic attack when he realized Clark and I were leaving I took him with me.

It wasn’t a terrible run, though there were a couple of times near the end that Pepper just stopped right in front of me and I almost tripped over him. It was just so hot. I was sweating as soon as I got out of the car, and it never let up.

We did the miles, and I let Pepper have most of what was in my water bottle. We went home, and fortunately, he never threw up.

Tomorrow I’m running a 5K in Lewes. Last year, this race was probably the hottest one I did all year, and I think it’s going to take the cake this year as well. (I hope it doesn’t get any hotter this year.) I think it’s safe to say there will be no PR tomorrow.

TK and I are going to the beach after that, as usual, but I have a feeling we will be spending more time than usual in the water. I love the beach, but I don’t even want to think about what it would feel like right now to be lying on the sand baking in this mess.

Sunday, I plan to get up nice and early to get in my 16-mile long run as soon as possible. There’s no NASCAR race this weekend, but my little sister’s graduation/birthday party is Sunday evening.

July 21, 2011

Training for 7/21/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:40 pm

This morning, I did my second hill workout on the Sharptown Bridge.

When I woke up, it was really foggy outside, which annoyed me. It hasn’t  been foggy in weeks, but the day I’m planning to ride my bike and run on the narrow shoulder of a bridge, it gets foggy. Screw you, weather.

By the time I actually left on my bike, much of it was burning off, and by the time I finished the 5-mile ride to the bridge, it was clear and sunny, and already very hot. The next few days are supposed to be the hottest so far this year.

I hid the bike in the woods near the bridge and did a mile on the flat road to warm up. Then I ran up and down the bridge five times. It sucked. The first time I ran this workout, it was actually a relatively cool day, for late June. Today, it was so hot and muggy, my legs felt like bricks. Oh well. It’s summer, what do I expect?

After I finished the last climb and descent, I did another mile to cool down. I had only run about 4.2 miles and I was as drenched in sweat as I am after a long run. I pulled my helmet back on and took off for the 20-minute ride home.

Riding the bike, with the air skimming over me, felt downright refreshing after that slog up and down the damn bridge.

At home, I did some stretching.

July 20, 2011

Training for 7/20/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:39 pm

This morning, I did some push-ups, ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting. This week, my Wednesday easy runs increased to 4 miles, so after all my strength training, I headed out for a lap around my 4.5-mile loop.

About a mile and a half into the run, I could see a vehicle come to a stop at an intersection up ahead. I was nowhere close to the intersection, and there was no traffic coming from either direction, yet the vehicle just sat there.

I figured it was someone messing with a GPS or a phone, or even just yelling at their kids in the back seat. As I got closer, I could see it was a Jeep Grand Cherokee, so I was betting on the kids in the back seat scenario.

The Jeep had been sitting there a good two or three minutes by the time I reached the intersection. I was turning right, so I ran right past the driver’s window, which was down. I could see two younger guys sitting in the front seats, and the driver was saying something. I had my iPod playing, so I paused it and asked the guy what he had said.

“As attractive as you are, you don’t need to be out here running.”

Oh snap. This comment was idiotic on so many levels, I didn’t know where to begin. First of all, while some runners are trying to lose weight, some are not (like me), and even the ones who want to lose weight usually are also working toward another goal in addition to weight loss, like training for a race.

Second, even if I was trying to lose weight, what did this guy think this comment would result in? Me sighing in relief because, after nearly 10 years of running, I had finally reached some arbitrary level of “attractiveness” and could just go the hell home and chill out?

And third, YOU TOOK THAT MUCH TIME OUT OF YOUR DAY TO SIT AT THIS INTERSECTION JUST SO YOU COULD TELL ME THAT? How pointless is your existence, anyway?

Rather than let fly with what I really thought of his stupid remark, I just smiled sweetly and said, “Actually, I’m signed up for a marathon in October, so I really do need to be out here running.”

I can’t pinpoint the look on the guy’s face after I said that. It was something between surprise and a reaction to getting poked in the eye. It was awesome. He had clearly not been expecting to hear that. So he just stammered out “Oh… good luck!”

But I was already on my way down the road again. I was really glad I had worn my finisher’s hat from the Shamrock Marathon to catch sweat, with “26.2 FINISHER” stitched on the back.

What a dope!

July 19, 2011

Training for 7/19/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:11 pm

This morning I ran my Tuesday middle-distance run, which this week bumped up to 8 miles.

It’s getting warm here again. I took my 22-oz. water bottle, filled with ice, Gatorade and water, and set out on my 8.2-mile loop.

It was a little miserable, but not too terrible. I remember the days I could go out and run my 14.5-mile loop without water and feel fine when I finished. Today, I drained that water bottle and only ran about half as far.

I finished the loop in 1:11:34, average pace of 8:44/mile.

Since I don’t have the money to buy enough sports bras and running shorts to wear a clean outfit every time I run between laundry days, I have figured out a way to limit the stench created by shorts in particular after a couple of runs. I rinse everything out in cold water before I hang it up to dry. My clothes were so thoroughly soaked this morning just from sweating there really wasn’t much difference after I dunked them in a sink full of cold water.

July 18, 2011

Training for 7/18/11

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:05 pm

Great news — Clark was discharged from the hospital yesterday! He’s home (well, at work), and not a moment too soon. He was going crazy in that little hospital room, and the food was getting to him so bad he had me smuggle in some real food from a local restaurant Saturday night, haha. It turned out the nutritionist who put him on the “bland” diet had his condition mixed up with another one, and the only food Clark really has to avoid is hot peppers, so the food I brought him Saturday wasn’t that bad for him anyway.

Friday night, I stopped in to see Clark after work, and then I ran home to cut the grass before it got dark. We both thought Clark would be getting out of the hospital Saturday, and I didn’t want him to have to turn around and go right back to the hospital to address the heart attack he would have had if he saw the yard looking like it did Friday.

I got the lawnmower put away just as it was getting too dark to see anymore, and I ate some dinner and fell asleep in front of the TV. At 2 a.m., I finally went to bed, with my alarm set for 5:45 a.m.

I got up just before my alarm went off, took care of Pepper and got ready for the Great Wyoming Buffalo Stampede 10K in Wyoming, Del. TK was at my house by 6:15, and we headed to the race site.

It seemed like there were a lot more runners this year, for both the 10K and the 5K. I don’t know if it was the new technical race shirts, first-time chip-timing or the fact the weather was so much more agreeable this year. It wasn’t a cool day by any means, but at least we weren’t already sweating just standing at the start line, like last year.

The race was supposed to start at 8 a.m., but, like last year, the start was held off a while longer, this time because of a back-up at the registration table. They finally let us go.

It was a little crowded at the beginning, but not too bad. I don’t understand the runners who practically panic and start barging through the crowd at the beginning of a race. You don’t really lose much time just being a little patient, and a little courtesy goes a long way. I slowly made my way past the few slower runners who had started in front of me and settled into a good pace.

I wasn’t expecting to PR in the race. Last year, because of the heat, I had run more than three minutes slower than my best time. Though it wasn’t as hot this year, it was still on the warm side, and most of the course was on country roads with no shade. I had run my current 10K PR on a cool day in April.

I hit the first mile marker in 7:04 and knew I had gone out too fast. I slowed down a little as we ran down a dirt path through an orchard.

The dirt path didn’t last long, and the rest of the race was an out-and-back on a paved road. I was feeling a little hot, but not too bad. I can’t really remember my mile splits from the rest of the race, but I know I hit three miles and thought I might have a shot at a PR, surprisingly.

About a half a mile later, we hit the turnaround. I passed two women almost immediately and felt myself pulling ahead. I don’t know where that sudden burst of energy came from, but it lasted for about the next mile.

After the turnaround, we were running past all the runners behind us. I was running right on the heels of another woman, and this old guy on the other side passed us and said “three and four,” as in, we were third and fourth women. I passed her soon after that.

By about mile 4.5, I was really feeling the heat. I guess since it wasn’t as hot as last year, they didn’t feel the need to park the firetruck on the course the way they did last year. The last bit of that race was endless. I got passed by another woman, and just kept her and the guy between us in my sights as we started catching up with the back-of-the-pack 5K’ers.

Finally, we made it back to the town, and I knew it was just a couple of quick turns and I would be at the finish line. I didn’t know if I still had a shot at a PR, and at that point, I couldn’t possibly care less. I had stopped looking at my watch. All I wanted was to be done running!

I turned the final corner and saw the finish line ahead, and TK and Kari cheering for me. I gave what I had left and sprinted across the line in 46:03, a 37-second PR.

Volunteers took the tag off the bottom of my bib and the chip off my shoe, and gave me a cold towel for my head, and I headed straight for the firetruck and crouched down in the spray. There was water and Gatorade, and fresh watermelon and peaches at the finish line. I love this 10K — when it’s over!

We went to the after party at the nearby Moose Lodge. I had a couple free Budweisers while we listened to live music and waited for the results. We sat there so long, my shorts and bra had almost dried out by the time they finally got the results going.

I won my age group and got a much larger wooden buffalo trophy than the one I got for coming in third last year. I was also fourth woman and 28th finisher out of 180 overall.

At home, I stretched and took a shower, and then I went to the hospital for a few hours, staying until visitor hours ended. TK had kindly offered to watch Pepper while I was at the hospital, so he didn’t have to stay home alone again, and after I left the hospital, I went to her house and we watched a movie.

Yesterday morning, I got up and ran my long run. This was a cutback week, so it was only 10 miles, but my legs were pretty tired from the 10K the day before. It was a little tough, but I finished my 10.5-mile loop in 1:31:48, average pace of 8:44/mile. I did some yoga after that.

Clark got home right about then, and we spent the rest of the day watching the NASCAR race (Bobby was seventh!)

This morning, I did my push-ups workout, ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting, and three easy miles on the road. I finished up with barefoot exercises and stretching.

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