Sunday, November 29, 2009

Day 63 BTWG "10 miles down, 3.1 to go!"

Today for my endurance run I decided I would try and run 10 miles on the Monon Trail with the option to walk if it became too much. I left the house with a protein bar in my pocket and a water belt and began my warm up walk to the 10th street entrance of the Monon. The run started well but the rain was determined to fall and I was not prepared - but I had decided I wasn't going to let this stop me. The first 2.5 miles were undoubtedly the hardest. I think just knowing I had a long journey ahead of me made it that much harder to get moving! I started very slowly knowing I would need to conserve some energy for the latter part of the run.

Somewhere around mile 3 it suddenly became much easier - everything just seemed to start falling into place and I had to think less about what my body was doing and more on keeping a steady pace. It was pretty cold and grey out and I only saw 2 other runners but there were plenty of cyclists out, wrapped up against the cold breeze that had started to blow following the rain, and so many overweight squirrels that would probably have fared well from a jog or two themselves. By the 38th street bridge I realised that I would manage 7 miles no problem and if I could just get to 56th street, my turning point, then maybe the ten miles would also be achievable. The whole run I kept looking for things to focus on in the distance and as soon as I reached them I found the next tree, lamp post, mile marker, building to run to. This pretty much seemed to keep me going. Every so often I would have to adjust my running gait as I got more tired and lazy so that kept me present - no opportunity for the mind to wander too far.

At 56th street near the small park I made my turn and began the 5 mile journey back to the start of the trail. The wind had picked and not in my favour : (( I managed to pick up the pace to try and compensate - which surprised me but I was still feeling pretty strong. The rain really started to come down and I was finding it increasingly difficult to see, luckily navigation isn't an issue on this trail.

Somewhere between 28th and 25th streets I saw what looked like 3 dogs cross the trail and head into some shrub land in front of me and something told me all was not right. These 'dogs' looked odd, stray, like a cross between foxes and wolves. Coyote? Downtown? Hmm I wasn't convinced but something told me to keep an eye on them. I slowed as I passed them - watching them as they watched me from the shrub - and as soon as I was passed them I picked up the pace not looking back but really wondering - "could there be coyote this far down town?" Not knowing anything about them and as it was starting to get darker and colder, I just kept on going. They could have been stray dogs?? Hmm I'll never know.

The last stretch - I knew I'd finish - and my legs kept moving faster and faster! I was getting really cold and hungry! I was already wet from the rain and the temperature felt like it had dropped 10 degrees from when I left home : (( But the end was in sight - and I was watching the clock every 10th of that last mile - desperate to be able to stop! My watch gave me that 10 mile alert and the sense of relief was immense. I kept on walking - my warm down walk home. Something was hurting but I couldn't work out what it was. It was like everything below my waist was one and pinpointing pain wouldn't be possible without poking and prodding every muscle and joint. I polished off the protein bar and the remaining water and made it home in record time.

I opened the door to 2 furry faces wondering where I'd been and where dinner was??? No clock needed in their world!! I bent down to unlace my trainers and ouch!!! I found the pain!! My hamstrings were tight and angry and bending wasn't an option without some serious stretching. I managed to drag myself upstairs and into a too hot shower to try and warm up then spent half an hour stretching and using my foam roller to ease off any muscle tension. Finally with hands touching feet again we all ate and crashed out!

Wow what an afternoon. 10 miles! Mini marathon here I come! It really surprises me that I'm running at all. 15 years ago after a rugby accident I was told running wasn't an option! It's amazing what you can accomplish if you're determined!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Day 60 BTWG "Thanksgiving turkey"

Great joy - after an awful few days with very painful knees, slow running and even slower enthusiasm I signed up for the Thanksgiving Drumstick Dash. Basically I decided that if I was in too much pain to run I would be one of the walkers and get a hoof on.

Well the night before I felt pretty good. I collected my pack - which I must say included a rather fab tech tee (hey I'll take that over the "medal for the first 15,000" any day) and tried not to go crazy on carbs - so I just had a spinach salad, large enough to feed a small European family, with all the trimmings, lots of water and an early night. Funny - I got pretty nervous about the whole ordeal and have absolutely no idea why.

Race morning came and after a large cup of tea and bottle of water I ventured out to Broad Ripple for the big race. As usual I was racing against the clock before the gun had even gone off - just can't understand why I am late absolutely everywhere I go - and managed to find a parking spot not too far from the start.

Well I was super surprised to see the 1000s of people all lined up - crikey this is a popular event. I headed down to the 11-12 min pace marker and just waited for the start. I felt pretty good for the first mile or so but for some reason was mega pissed by the number of walkers who had evidently lined up at the faster pace markers knowing full well they would never keep pace. Which meant that us slower runners behind them had to play dodgems as they casually strolled practically arm in arm blocking the road ahead completely aaaarrrgghhhh how annoying. I managed to elbow my way through but THERE SHOULD BE RULES FOR LOITERING ON A RACE TRACK!!!!! At one point I actually ground to a complete halt - I'm sure that added ooohh AT LEAST 5 seconds to my time!!!!

Well I wasn't to be perturbed and managed to plan my route ahead - even if it meant the 4.5 miles I was meant to be running ended up being 5 miles as I zig zagged the walkers, strollers and dogs - hey ho! For me it was perfect running conditions - 38 deg F - which seems to suit me well strangely - as I can't bare the cold. But being a human radiator when running the chance to stay cool suited me.

At 3 miles I thought I would have to walk - the usual 'started to fast!' thoughts entered my head and I honestly thought I needed to stop but my legs were having none of it! I'm always surprised how a race can just pull you along. I kept focusing on the runners ahead - picking out individuals to pass - and feeling very exhilarated as I actually passed them. I think I passed more people than passed me - which says something about my strategy for my next race. The one common denominator - I was always passed by a lot of people on the 'hills' - note to self - "more hill running in training!!!"

All in all - I was very pleased to see the finish line! I really gave it my all today and didn't collapse in the heap at the end - which says - may be it wasn't QUITE my all but I'm pleased - another 45s / mile off my PR - suits me!

The rest of the day I spent stretching, cooking, eating and chatting to friends in London on Skype. A good day all in all and so - TO BED!

COUNTDOWN: 162 Days to OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Day 56 - BTWG "4 weeks left and counting..."

Wow can't believe week 8 is over so soon and Thanksgiving will be here in a flash. Had a tough week this week with visitors over from London and Germany and lots of meals out. Didn't go completely crazy but a challenge none the less.

I topped the week off with a solo GODDESS run on the Monon which made a nice change but only managed 4 miles as everything seemed to ache today. In fact as I type, my knees are encased in a large bag of frozen beans.

Went to the opera this afternoon then for a tuna salad which were both very good and I think I'm just about ready for bed - once the knee pain has eased off a bit!

4 weeks left to make a difference!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Day 49 BTWG "The GODDESSes run with the wildlife"

Well this week the GODDESSes surpassed themselves with a 5 mile trail run in Eagle Creek. It was a great morning for it led by the honorary GODDESS himself Sensei Roche. It felt like back breaking up hills all the way for the first 2 miles sparsely accented by modest down hill sections only to be cruelly followed by yet another up hill. But with one foot in front of the other I made the full distance feeling thoroughly exhilarated and completely exhausted!! The run was made extra special by the sighting of a "stag", (sorry city chick has no idea about local language for Bambi's cousin), that I think must have been a 15 pointer?!*!?!**?! OK so I have no idea what I'm talking about but it was a whopper and not the burger variety - well not yet anyway : ((

It was such good fun and really hard work, as was evident on the journey back to KR's!!! Hope to do that one again very soon!!!!

COUNTDOWN: 173 Days to OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Day 42 BTWG "The GODDESSes run on water"

Check out the GODDESS RUN on, and if you feel the urge for an early morning run on Sundays - come run with us - all are welcome!

It's been a month since BTWG graduate Sherri got the ladies together for Sunday morning runs at the canal and it's a real motivator to get you up and active. The run is followed by a trip to Starbucks for tea / coffee and a deep, desiring sniff of "way too many calories". Come and join us, no pressure, just fresh air and exercise.

If you do feel the urge just let us know - the route will change every so often so stay tuned.

COUNTDOWN: 180 Days to OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Day 39 - BTWG ... OUCH!!

In an attempt to continue on my wellness mission a certain GODDESS, who shall remain nameless, suggested that we could supplement our training program by venturing down a new path of self flagellating masochistic 'pleasure' aka Pilates. Good grief! This has to be one of the most effective torture methods to ever come out of Europe closely followed by thumb screws and the rack. Needless to say today I feel as though I have been hit by a proverbial bus with nothing functioning in any manner remotely resembling "athlete" but closer to a 90 year old decrepit hobbit. I know I shall feel the benefit at some point but at the moment I would sooner settle for the ability to sit down without wincing!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Day 35 - BTWG "Hindu GODDESS Face Plant"

Wow can't believe it has been sooo long since my last blog - slacking methinks. Have been a bit ill this week - stomach? problems I think - but hoping a visit to the docs next week will fix that. In fact I'm also going to see a Chiropractor next week too - not looking forward to that at all but having problems with my neck - I think bit by bit I'm slowly falling apart!!

However I triumphed on Thursday with 7 mile run which felt good. I ran to the canal, twice around then back home. I was only expecting to complete 4 miles but felt so good at 3.5 I thought I'd just keep on slogging. The canal is an interesting place at 7 in the morning - just a few other joggers and ducks to keep you company but strangely peaceful! The oddest thing was running by street light and finishing by daylight. Never thought I would ever manage to run that far so feeling a lot more confident about running a mini next year.

Had another great GODDESS "Girls Out Doing Damn Exercise Successive Sundays" run this morning. Although I was a tad late I managed to catch up with two other goddesses floating through the White River Park. I'm really staring to enjoy this whole "running in the morning" thing - especially when you have fellow die hards to join in the fun.

I decided the dogs deserved a special treat so went to Eagle Creek for a 3.5 mile hike after lunch. And judging by the fact that they haven't moved since having dinner I would say they are completely tuckered out.

I even managed to squeeze a strength work out this evening - wow it's pretty hard but thankfully short - who on earth came up with the "Hindu push up" - I think "Hindu face plant" is far more appropriate - will seriously have to practice that one more often!!

Well enough rambling - to bed me thinks.

COUNTDOWN: 187 Days to OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon