With Ragnar Del Sol only 4 weeks away (!!!) I’m beginning to get really nervous about my ability to run 13.5 miles… and then run two additional times afterwards. I’ve been a bit behind in my training schedule (and by “a bit” I mean that I’m getting in about half the mileage that my training schedule suggests I should get). Last weekend, I was due to run 3 separate runs of 6, 4, and 4 miles on Saturday. When I woke up, my back was still bothering me a bit and it was supposed to be a super wet/gross day, so I decided to hold off until Sunday.
The problem with running on Sunday though was that I had brunch plans with a former boss AND we were having people over to watch the AFC Championship games (football? what’s that? I was mostly there for the friends and snacks…). So, question is, how did I manage 3 runs, 3 after-run stretches, and 3 showers with all the activities?
WELL, I woke up at 8 and ran 6 miles before brunch. At 10am brunch, I kept myself in check by not eating anything too heavy, knowing that I would need to run again in a couple hours. I got home around noon, and gave myself until 1:30pm to relax and digest. At that point, I went on my 2nd run. I was feeling pretty good, and decided that rather than do 4 miles/4 miles, I’d do 5 miles/3 miles to shorten my absence during the middle of the game. By the time I finished my 5 miles, a couple of our friends had just arrived so while they finalized getting snacks ready/getting drinks, I did some stretching and took another quick shower. A couple hours later, with a few minutes until half time (a little after 4pm) I left the room and finished off my final 3 miles. After a 3rd round of stretching (and a 3rd shower – my body hates my sweat and breaks out in horrible rashes… so best to just shower all the time), I was finally able to enjoy the day and relax. While it *was* a pain to work my day around running 3 times, it worked out just fine AND I ran a total of 14 miles, which was my highest mileage to date.
This last week, I only ran twice (one of which was that *really* cold run I already mentioned), for a total of 11 miles. On Saturday, my training plan wanted me to run 18 miles. In one run. Knowing that I hadn’t yet accomplished 14 miles in one run, I decided to start with that, and then run a second time for 2-4 miles to get to 16-18 miles total for the day. With no plans for the day until Saturday night’s pie-themed party, I slept in and didn’t head out for my 14 mile run until 9am. I kept the pace slow and easy, between 10-10:30 minute miles. I felt ok for most of the run – at one point I had a really bad stomach pain, and I had to walk for a minute. Then I stopped at the house and peed and refilled my water bottle at around 10 miles. With only 4 miles remaining, I felt pretty confident… until the wind started. The wind was SO strong and directed at my face, so I had to walk at some points, only because I physically could not run through it. (The wind was so strong that garbage cans were being thrown around the streets…) BUT, in the end, I got through the 14 miles!
When I got home, I did a lot of stretching and then jumped in the shower. Eric made breakfast burritos (so good) and I chilled out. A Bruins game was at 1pm, and I promptly fell asleep. Knowing it would be a late night, and that I needed another run, I decided to get into bed and take an actual nap. I made some coffee when I woke up at 3pm and prepped the cheeses for our (turkey) bacon macaroni and cheese pie. After some coffee, I went for my second run of the day. I decided to stick with 2 miles, rather than the full 4, because I wanted to be functional for the party. I was happy enough getting through a total of 16 miles in the day, and knowing that my body felt good enough that I could have done the other 2 if I hadn’t had evening plans.
All in all, I’m pleased with the week. It probably would have been good to get a third run in during the work week (but it was so cold!). My mileage for the week was 27, which is the highest it’s been in this winter’s training. My goal for this upcoming week is to hit 30 miles – 3 runs during the work week, and then 18 miles on Saturday.
In other news, my Ragnar team and I are getting pumped about the race. This article was posted on the Ragnar Facebook page, which got us all messaging back and forth about the “kills” (aka, passing another runner on a leg and posting a tally of kills on the van), the costumes, and the medals. I commented about how my goal for #12months12halfs is really tied to just wanting a ridiculous number of medals, and Tara asked me if I knew that I was going to get a second, special medal for running the 13.5 mile leg of the Ragnar race. This was my response:
While I haven’t found any proof of this mysterious second medal on the Ragnar website, I did find this blog post by another blogger who ran Ragnar Del Sol a couple years ago and was runner #9 (like me!). She wrote a nicely detailed review of the 3 legs, especially the 13.5 miles, and I am going to study it meticulously. AND she mentioned the special medal, so I’m beginning to think it’s legit. YES!