Sunday, July 29, 2012

Being Sick Blows

These past few days have been a bust for me running-wise. 

I was feeling a bit grotty on Thursday so decided to delay my 6 km run ... but then left the office on Friday feeling the onset of a cold and completely devoid of energy. The weekend was no better; my state deteriorated into a sore throat and sheer exhaustion which meant no running for me.

When I don't feel well, I try and stay somewhat active by toning down the runs to easy 15 or 20 minute jogs. But I've never been sure what to do if I have a long run scheduled. I had 23 km on the docket for today but didn't run at all simply because I really didn't know what to do.

Here's my question - and I'm looking at the long-distance runners who are reading this blog: 

What do you do when you're sick and have to do a long run? 

Do you rest up on the weekend and try to fit that long run in during the week instead? What if you don't have time to be out on a three-hour training run during the week? Do you split up the mileage into two or three runs instead? I know that's not ideal, but we're all working within constraints, right? Are two 12 km runs a reasonable substitute for a 23 or 24 km long run - even just for one week? Or do you merely write it off and work a bit harder next Sunday? 

This is something I've always wondered about but never really knew what might be best. Anyone have any tips? Would love the feedback!

(On a happier note ... being sick this weekend was such a great excuse to do nothing but stay on the couch and watch the Olympics. Who else is watching London 2012 coverage? Can't wait to see how the athletes do in the running events!)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Stats Rule!

Here's a quick mid-week update simply to say ... I love my Garmin.  

I logged into my account today to find this new resource: a snapshot of my personal best times, based on all of my inputs over the last three years. Amazeballs.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Long Run Sunday, In Verse

Grey skies and rain
Reprieve from the heat.
Most will be disappointed
Except for the runners.

Sunday running groups 
Take up so much space.
They're like a mob! Don't make eye contact.

Hit by bird shit! Never good.
Sign of good luck? I don't buy it.
Nearest washroom
Wipe, wipe, wipe.

One marina, two marina, three marina, four.
Boats in the harbour

Kitsilano. Always crowded.
Beach volleyball tournament
So many people.
Blood pressure rising.

Looming shapes, tankers in the distance.
Eerie, like sentinels
Watching over the beaches.

Blue herons, pond lilies, ducks with green heads.
No camera. 
One might think
I'd know better by now.

Gel flask on the ground.
Kind of muddy
Nowhere to wipe
(see: "Hit by bird shit!"). 

Helping non-locals find 
Nearby washrooms.
"One is right over there!"
Runners always know.

Kits Beach pool. Bright blue against the grey sky.
Swimmers doing laps.
Back and forth, back and forth,
Back and forth.

Is that man naked? Wearing nothing but a towel.
Couldn't be
And there go the swim trunks (or is that underwear?).

Boom! Boom! Thunder overhead.
Well ... that's new.
Wind cooling. Bad weather imminent?
Maybe I'll run faster. 

Thinking about running poetry
Giggling like a nutter.
Long run Sunday
It's good to be back.

Spruce Harbour Marina
© 2011 Greater Vancouver Floating Home Coop

Kits Pool
© Thomsen D'Hont

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Running Round-Up

Deep Thoughts, Not by Jack Handey
I don't know about you, but sometimes I think about the strangest things when I'm out on my runs, probably because I choose to run without headphones and my mind tends to wander all over the place. Here's a sample of what my brain said to me this week:

  • Upon seeing a mouse (or perhaps, rat?) sprint from a pristine, manicured flowerbed, across the bike path right in front of me, to another well-landscaped flowerbed: "Guess they really are everywhere. We just don't know it most of the time."
  • When the sun started to come up: "Holy mother, it's gonna get hot out here!"
  • Seeing weeds along the path: "Too bad there aren't more dandelions. The bunnies love to eat those."
  • Observing a runner wearing a long-sleeved zip-up jacket: "I wonder if she's training for a weather-specific event. Mainly a hot one. Why else would anyone wear such a thing on a run in the middle of summer?"
  • Fur on the sidewalk: "OMG ... is that part of a dead animal??"

It's Getting Hot Out There
The weather has finally (and miraculously!) turned warm and wonderful on the west coast and it's reminded me to draw upon the plenty of ways to safely train in the summer heat. 

Some of the best tips I've picked up over the years include running in the early morning or later at night, slowing down where necessary, always carrying water, and replenishing potassium levels by drinking orange juice after every run. 

One of my favourite and most logical precautionary measures, which I admittedly struggle with, is staying regularly hydrated throughout the day. Really gotta work at getting those eight cups in!  

How do you adapt your training when it's hot outside?

Love You, John Stanton
Last but not least, I'd like to end with a quote of the day - which is, of course, from the Running Room's John Stanton.
"You know you're addicted to running when someone says Boston, New York or Chicago and you think: marathon."
Have a great weekend, everybody! Stay safe in that summer heat.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

I Am ...

A runner. 

A person who feels so much better about myself and life in general when I've been running.

Much less likely to freak out about the little things when I keep up with a running schedule. 

Annoyed by inconsiderate ignoramuses who are allowed to frequent my regular running routes. This includes, but is not limited to, oblivious dog walkers, full-of-it cyclists and parents who can't be bothered to parent their own children.

Easily frustrated when I've realized how far I've been set back by an injury or a lapse in my training.

A girl who really needs a specific goal to stay motivated. (Case in point: 2011. No races. No running.)

Incredibly disappointed that I wasn't able to run the race I'd trained for all spring. It still bothers me. There's no sense in denying it.

Aware that I need to move on from not being able to run the race I'd trained for all spring.

Going back to school in the fall and would like to complete a full marathon before then because I really thought I'd have #3 in the bag by now.

Aiming to complete a marathon this summer, as a result. On the horizon: the Marathon by the Sea in Saint John, New Brunswick. Date: August 12, 2012.

Unsure if trying to run a marathon by the end of the summer is realistic, but I'm willing to use it as something to work towards if, for nothing else, to keep me motivated for the next few months.

Confident that, if I am unsure about the performance of my leg in any way, that I would not do anything to risk re-injury or jeopardize my ability to finish Five by 35. I've got plenty of time and really don't need to rush things.

Still working on my biomechanics (gotta love physio!) and realizing that there will always be room to improve when it comes to this. 

Happy to be where I am, despite everything. Each experience in running has taught me something new.

Amazed at how much I've learned about myself, and how much more I have yet to learn, just by running.  

Thankful that I am able to run.

I am ... not really into heels. These are more my speed. 
More on my most recent purchase to come.