A Simple Running Log

October 28, 2013

Training for 10/28/13

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:54 pm

Friday was a rest day. It was also my friend Wendy’s 30th birthday. Her younger sister wanted to take her out to Fager’s Island in Ocean City to celebrate and invited all of Wendy’s friends. TK, Julie and I went, and we were also joined by Wendy’s older sister. The six of us had dinner in Seaford first, and then went straight to Ocean City. We rented a hotel room on 61st Street, a short walk from Fager’s.

We’d made these plans a few weeks ago, long before I got the bright idea to sign up for the Seaside 10-mile race on the boardwalk in Ocean City the very next morning. Even though I always have a great time at Fager’s, for some reason I didn’t think this would mess me up for my first double-digit run in more than a month and a half.

Well, I had another great time at Fager’s. They always have a DJ on one side and a live cover band on the other. Except for the band’s set breaks, we stayed on their side the whole night, drinking and dancing our butts off. I was trying to be good — I switched from the craft beers I prefer to Budweiser, my light beer — but I also had a couple of shots.

TK was going to run the 5K that started 15 minutes after the 10-miler, so she and I left Fager’s around 12:30 a.m. I crashed as soon as I got back to the hotel, and didn’t wake up when the other four came back an hour or so later.

The race didn’t start until 9 a.m., and we were only a few miles from the start line at the inlet, so luckily we didn’t have to wake up too early. It still hurt when TK’s phone alarm started playing the most annoyingly cheerful little tune at 7:30 a.m. We hit snooze a couple of times before we rolled out of bed and reluctantly got dressed, while everyone else told us we were morons for trying to run after our night out. If I hadn’t paid in advance, I probably would have skipped this race.

I was really tired and a little hungover. I also hadn’t eaten anything since dinner the night before, and there was nothing to eat in the room except for some M&Ms and cheese balls Julie brought. TK and I each took a bottle of water and headed out.

It was a beautiful morning for a run in Ocean City – clear and sunny, chilly but not too cold and not that windy yet, which doesn’t happen often right there on the coast.

When we left the hotel, we saw a roads crew on the other side of the highway, setting up cones. It dawned on me they were probably marking the race course. I was going to have to run all the way here from the inlet and back? Gross.

We got to the inlet and had our race packets within a couple of minutes. I pulled off my sweats, tied the timing chip to my shoe, pinned on my bib and tried to use the bathroom before the start.

I knew I could run 10 miles, no matter how little sleep I’d gotten, how little food I’d eaten or how much beer I’d drank the night before. My biggest worry going into the race was my digestive system. It’s fickle on a good day, and this was not a good day.

I managed to get a little out before the race started, but I just knew I was going to have trouble. There was nothing more I could do about it though, so I got in the start pack and took off with everyone else.

The race started in the inlet parking lot, did a loop around it, ran backwards through the finish line and then headed north, up and around the pier and finally onto the boardwalk.

The first couple of miles kinda sucked. I felt OK, and wasn’t pushing the pace at all, but I really just didn’t feel like running. I started to feel a couple of little cramps coming on, in my shoulders mostly, probably due to dehydration.

We passed the first mile marker. I’d forgotten to pack my running watch, so I was hoping to hear someone near me yell out the split to a running partner or something. No luck. I had no idea how fast I was running.

Sometime in the second mile, we hit the first water stop. I walked a couple of seconds to down an entire cup of water. When I started running again, the cramping in my shoulders started to subside. We hit a total of five water stops in the race, and I did the same every time. I didn’t have any more trouble with side stitches or cramping.

By the time we got to the end of the boardwalk at 28th Street, I felt pretty good. I wasn’t running too fast, but I was comfortable.

Right after we left the boardwalk, we ran on a street that went behind a Dunkin Donuts. The smell of delicious donuts filled the air. I was running right behind these two identically-dressed girls who were clearly running together. They both had ear buds in though and couldn’t hear each other, which led to this exchange:

Girl 1: Do you need your inhaler?

Girl 2: DONUTS??!!

End of conversation.

(This made me laugh, but when I told Clark this story yesterday, he gave me a blank look and said, “I guess you had to be there.”)

Anyway…

We followed that side street about five blocks, and then we made a turn onto Coastal Highway for the rest of the way until the turnaround. I was still humming along. I hadn’t heard a peep from my digestive system the whole way, and was starting to feel hopeful I was going to get lucky.

This was, of course, when I first felt some rumblings. We passed four miles, and I realized I hadn’t seen a single port-o-potty, and most of the buildings on our side of the highway were either condos or hotels that I couldn’t be sure had a public bathroom or were businesses that were closed.

Sometime in the next mile, the leader passed me on his way back to the finish line. It was Enos, clicking off sub-6-minute miles with a smile on his face of course!

I ran past our hotel at 61st Street. I wondered if anyone was still in our room who could let me in to use the bathroom. If it hadn’t been on the opposite side of the highway, I probably would have checked.

We made it to the turnaround at the halfway point at 69th Street. I took a cup of water at the stop and then turned a corner to see the two most beautiful port-o-potties I’d ever laid eyes on. Better yet, one was open!

I will not go into detail here. I don’t know how long I was in there, but it felt like an eternity. I felt so bad for a couple of minutes in there, I seriously thought about just asking the volunteers at the water stop to radio for someone to come pick me up.

I was probably in there a solid five minutes, just listening to people run by, before I finally felt like I could run another five miles.

I felt OK once I started running again. The wind had picked up slightly and was in our face on the way back, but it really wasn’t bad at all.

The runners were farther apart on the way back. I saw the last runner in the race on her way to the turnaround when I was at about mile 6, I think.

The rest of the race was pretty uneventful. I still felt fine running as far as my legs were concerned. I didn’t feel like I was pushing at all, but if I tried to run any faster, my stomach would let me know.

I tried to pick it up a little in the last mile. We turned off the boardwalk and ran back up and around the pier, and then around the parking lot. On the very last turn before the finish, there was someone dressed up like the Grim Reaper holding a sign that said “The end is near” haha. Someone does that at mile 20 of the Marine Corps Marathon every year, but I completely missed it the year I ran it because I was so miserable by that point, so I was glad I’d noticed this Grim Reaper.

The finish clock read 1:30:30-something as I crossed. As soon as I finished, the first volunteer who was taking bib tags asked me if I felt OK. I guess I looked rougher than I thought!

I told him I was fine and found a chair to sit on so I could remove my timing chip, which was not disposable. TK found me, and we went straight to her car and left. Neither of us felt much like hanging around.

We’d gotten tickets for two free beers each after the race, and we didn’t even want them! I think it was Bud Light anyway, so, no loss.

We stopped at a different Dunkin Donuts on the way home than the one I’d passed in the race, and I got a pumpkin cake donut, my first bite of food in hours. It really hit the spot!

They posted the results online later. My official time was 1:30:36, a 9:04/mile pace, and my slowest 10-mile race. I figure I had to stop for about five minutes at the halfway point, so I probably ran closer to 1:25, an 8:30/mile pace, which I was more than OK with, all things considered.

I was 18th of 49 in the F 30-39 age group and 130th out of 270 total finishers.

It really was a nice event though. I’ll have to run it another year, and wait until the night after to go out.

The rest of Saturday, Clark and I just lazed about. I needed a nap before a bonfire we’d been invited to that night. I don’t think I ever really fell asleep though.

We weren’t sure if there would be food at the bonfire, so we went out to dinner in Salisbury first. Then we came home to get ready for the party — Clark put on his mullet wig, and I made up my face to look dead. I had a prosthetic exit wound that I stuck on my cheek.

This picture was taken when we got home, after I’d rubbed off half the makeup, but this is what I looked like:

I believe this is also how I looked when I finished the race that morning.

I believe this is also how I looked when I finished the race that morning.

At the bonfire, Mike asked me what I was, and I said I was just dead. He said, “Oh, so you’re Bobby Labonte’s career!” So mean! But I admit I laughed.

We also took Pepper with us. Since it was below 60 degrees outside, he had to wear his dork jacket. There were a lot of people there who’d never seen Pepper, let alone in his little red form-fitting coat, and I heard a lot of people say “What the hell just ran by? Looked like a dog in an Under Armour shirt!”

Sunday morning, I felt fine, once I finally got up at 11:30. My legs were not at all sore, which makes me think I’ll be fine for the half marathon in Indy this coming Saturday. Luckily, we don’t have plans to party until Saturday night!

I didn’t do anything Sunday, other than sit on the couch and watch the race. I was pretty worried about Martinsville. Jimmie stupid Johnson just took the points lead by four last week. He typically runs very well at Martinsville, while the only other guy with a real shot, Matt Kenseth, does not. I was afraid Johnson would come out of Martinsville with a much larger points lead. Well, Johnson still has the lead, but he’s tied with Kenseth, after Kenseth finished second and led the most laps yesterday, while Johnson was fifth. Three more races to settle this thing. I really wish Johnson didn’t have a shot!

Today, I’ll do my strength training and take Pepper for a short run. I don’t really have a plan for the rest of the week. I should be tapering for Indy, but I don’t really have anywhere to taper from. It’s not like this is a goal race for me anyway; I’m just running it at this point so the entry fee and plane tickets don’t go to waste, and to hang out with everyone else.

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