Last week was supposed to be the week I got back to running six days a week and got myself fully on schedule again after my knee issues. Unfortunately, my knee still didn’t feel up to it on Monday so I ended up with just five days of running instead.
On Tuesday, I threw 5x1’ fartleks into my eight mile run for my first bit of speed work in a while. The weather was absolutely gorgeous so I busted out some booty shorts. I’ve never worn them while it was still light out before on account of having a serious case of the trans, but they worked out pretty well and were very comfortable. I get why people wear them now! The other great thing about the weather was there were a ton of other runners out after work! My normal route is typically light on other runners so I decided to change things up a bit and turn the other direction out of my development so I could run where the other runners were. It was nice being out there with my people; it’s been a while! It was also nice putting faces to all the fair-weather runners who only come out when the weather is nice. :-)
Wednesday was supposed to be twelve miles, but I really wasn’t feeling it. I went out there with every intention to get it done, but a mix of rain, 95% humidity, high winds, super tired legs, GI issues, and some rare inner thigh chaffing pretty much killed any chance of that happening. I had to quit at nine miles and head home to bury my sorrows in this incredible Mexican tortilla pizza I made:
On Thursday, my legs weren’t feeling any less tired, but I was determined to make up the miles I missed the night before. The temperature had dropped to 24º with 20-30mph winds and 40mph gusts for a “feels like” of 6º. It wasn’t pleasant out, but I rocked all eleven miles (up from the scheduled eight). Though, at one point, I was running into a gust of wind so strong I was literally running in place.
Friday was my scheduled rest day, but I swapped that with Saturday’s four miles to simplify my weekend slightly. I woke up super early before work and knocked out a slow and easy five miles.
Saturday was mostly spent in the car driving down to Virginia Beach for Sunday’s Shamrock Half Marathon, which the wife was running. We made good time on the way down, just 5:39 with two pee stops–pretty good for someone on Spironolactone! After checking into the hotel, the wife went for a quick three mile shakeout run and then it was off to dinner! Since Danielle (the wife!) is part of the team, we met up with the huge group of Oiselle runners in town for the races for the obligatory pasta dinner. And because dessert is awesome, we followed up dinner by getting gelato with Ellen, Allie, and Allison. Very yummy! Oh, and, at dinner, I finally got to meet Eat Pray Run Courtney!
We got up at 5am for the third day in a row on Sunday and I walked with Danielle to the start of the race. Unfortunately, it was windy as heck and rather chilly, so as soon as she shed her pre-race clothes I through some of them on as extra layers. After I wished her luck, I made my way up the course a bit to try to snap an early race photo of her. I didn’t end up catching her in the crowd, but I did get this great shot of Hollie about a third of a mile into the race.
After walking up and down the half marathon course a couple times, I finally decided to stake out a spot near the finish to catch Danielle as she went by, but not before grabbing another shot of Hollie at mile 12.
After snapping this awesome photo of the wife, I made my way over to meet her and congratulate her on an amazing new PR of 1:41:39! Frakking awesome!
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to stay and hang out long because I had my own run to do. I had 19 miles scheduled! Woof! I had been really struggling to figure out where I was going to put those miles in with the race going on. There wasn’t exactly enough road to do them all without clashing with the marathon course. Luckily, Twitter friend Kara lives in the area and was at the race to cheer and was able to help out. We met up on my walk back to the hotel and then she walked me over to First Landing State Park which so happens to be her favorite place to run. It turned out to be a great suggestion! The trail was very similar to the tow path I run on sometimes at home and it was a nice change of pace from my typical road running.
I was dreading this run though. I had walked between five and six miles and been on my feet or five hours before even getting changed to run and my legs and feet were already feeling really tired and sore. I didn’t know if I was going to be able to make it. I just figured I’d go out and give it what I had. I was pleasantly surprised to find my legs were up to the challenge though! My pace was a little slower than I would have liked, but I felt like it was respectable enough considering everything else I had going on before getting out there.
After cleaning myself up, Danielle and I picked up Paulette at her hotel and went over to Rockafeller’s Restaurant for dinner. We all ended up getting the chargrilled tuna with mango salsa special, hushpuppies, and an O’Connor Brewing Co. Great Dismal Black IPA. Everything was delicious!
By the time we made it back to the hotel, I was BEAT! I couldn’t even keep my eyes open past 9pm. So after crashing hard, we woke up early today, grabbed a great breakfast at Pocahontas Pancakes, and made our way home. We weren’t sure what to expect for the drive. It seemed like everything between there and home had gotten slammed with six or more inches of snow last night and early this morning. I expected the drive to be hell, but we were really lucky and everything was totally fine! We actually made it home faster (5;23) than it took to get there! Though, part of that was probably due to not having to stop at all to pee (did I remember to take my spiro this morning?!?!).
All-in-all, it was an AMAZING weekend filled with all kinds of awesomeness! I had a blast, met some awesome new people, met a few Twitter friends, watched Danielle score a new PR, ate some great food, and knocked out a decent 19-miler. No complaints! And just as awesome as the weekend itself was having a semi-solid week of training. I knocked out five runs and 51 miles!