Monday, February 22, 2010

Training Week 2/14 - 2/20

No rant this week. I would complain about the Olympic coverage, but it's the same thing everyone except Dick Ebersol is saying. That being said, it's a simple solution: show the events live as they're happening on one of the many stations, and use the prime time coverage to show recaps, puff pieces, ice dancing and more puff pieces. On PTI today, Wilbon called NBC the "Lifetime Network." Classic.

So, it was definitely food poisoning. It wasn't pretty, but I bounced back nicely this week.

Onto the numbers:

2/14, Sunday: 3 - 24:12, Suck Loop. Still some lingering stomach nastiness, but the run felt good.

2/15, Monday: 5 - 41:41, Highland Green Loop. Yup.

2/16, Tuesday: 3 - 25:39, Suck Loop. It was snowing heavily. It snowed heavily for 25 minutes and 39 seconds, and we got nothing out of it. *grumble*

2/17, Wednesday: Off

2/18, Thursday: 7 - 51:53, Bike Path. Marathon Pace Run: 7:21/7:25/7:20/7:29/7:26/7:26/7:23. Very encouraging workout. I felt pretty comfortable the whole way despite running a number of those miles directly into a pretty stiff wind.

2/19, Friday: 3 - 26:02, Suck Loop. The trail sections of the loop were pretty sketchy. Either slick ice or soft snow, and I was worried about breaking through a number of ice bridges. Felt good, but a bit tight.

2/20, Saturday: 15.5 - 2:24:51, Val's Fat Ass. A terrific day with the Trail Monsters, and, most importantly, happy 50th birthday, Val!

Miles: 36.5
Trail: 15.5
Road: 21

A very strong week for me, especially the last three days. I knew that would be a tough stretch, but it went pretty well. The conditions of the loop at the Fat Ass were tricky: a mix of ice, snow, mashed potatoes, grass, frozen grass, mud, frozen mud, lumps of frozen grass and mud, wet mud—everything you'd expect running through fields in April. It was April warm, too. That being said, it was a great day on the trails. (I just wish I had had more time to hang out and run with everyone there. And, take a helicopter ride!) From a training standpoint, that run was a big jump and a big confidence boost. It was my longest run in both time and distance since the September fiasco. The time on my feet was the biggest leap, and that was the hardest part. I was dragging in the middle of my third loop, but managed to rally to feel pretty good by the end. A good sign both mentally and physically.

So, I think there's hope for me yet...

Fingers crossed that I get to snowshoe race this weekend.

Oh, and here's the best picture ever:

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Training Week 2/7 - 2/13

Last Sunday, I volunteered at the Mid-Winter 10 Mile Classic in Cape Elizabeth. I worked both the 3-mile and 8-mile aid stations. It was really cool to see a race from the other side, so to speak. But, it was something else that really struck me. Now, this is a 10-mile road race in the winter, primarily contested by Mainers. Granted, it was a cold day, but not a brutally cold day by Maine standards. I could not believe the way some people were dressed to run: fleece jackets, puffy jackets, puffy jackets over fleece jackets, giant woolen mittens, scarves. Oh, and don't forget the extra jacket tied around your waist. We live in Maine, people. Haven't you run outside before when the temperature is below 50 degrees? Do you only run on the treadmill from October through May? Seriously, stop watching the Weather Channel and go outside.

In a totally unrelated story, I had a fairly craptastic week of training/not training. In part, this was due to some mysterious bowel wrenching ailment. Probably a small dwarf.

Onto the numbers:

2/7, Sunday: 4.5 - 36:22, 3x Mt. Ararat HS Loops. Didn't get out until late in the day. Somewhat disinterested in the proceedings, but I got the miles in.

2/8, Monday: 5 - 43:44, Topsham Snowmobile Trails. Energy a little low.

2/9, Tuesday: 3.5 - ~35:00, Nordic Meisters at Great Glen Trails. 7 minute warm up on snowshoes. 2 mile snowshoe course: 18:40. 10 minute warm down on the road. Fifth week of Nordic Meisters. Had a bit of a hectic day, so I was really just squeezing it in and didn't have time for my full warm up. Ran my fastest time yet, but it seemed to hurt more than it should have. The new ice cleats worked great, and they were necessary.

2/10, Wednesday: 3 - 26:53, Powerlines. Blech. Felt off, and my stomach troubles were just beginning.

2/11, Thursday: Off. Considered logging the mileage to and from the bathroom.

2/12, Friday: 3.25 - 27:30, 2x Mt. Ararat HS Loop w/ D and the Little Lady in the B.O.B. Fun to be out on a run as a family. Stomach still felt off, but I didn't need to make any pit stops.

2/12, Saturday: Off. Stomach still not right. Had hoped to race at the Horse Hill 7k Snowshoe Race, but since we live north of the Mason Dixon line, it was postponed due to lack of snow. My other alternative was the Polar Bear 5k in Portland, but I opted not to go. Instead, I stayed home all day with a very cranky baby, which took a lot of energy out of me.

Miles: 19.25
Trail: 10.8
Road: 8.75

Lame. So, as good as I was feeling last week, it's the total opposite this week. Granted, I've been ill, but the cancellation of multiple snowshoe races has really hurt my motivation and mojo. Just not feeling good. Based on health, I certainly could have raced yesterday morning (most likely), but I just wasn't motivated. I could have run yesterday evening, but just didn't. A lot of "could haves" don't add up to good results. As I write this it's after 3:00pm, and I still haven't run yet today. I need to get it together.

Not going quite as far back this week:

"I'm doin' laundry..."

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Training Week 1/31 - 2/6

No race for me this weekend because the Exeter Snowshoe Hullabaloo was postponed until February 27th due to lack of snow. Sure wish I lived in Maryland. I could have raced tomorrow at the Mid-Winter 10 Mile Classic, but I frankly didn't want to because...well, I hate that race. Plus, I'd already offered to volunteer during the race, which should be significantly more enjoyable. I actually think I would have done fairly well based on my recent results on snowshoes, but I'm not sure how I great I'd feel after pounding the roads for 10 miles. I briefly toyed with the idea of driving to Northfield for a snowshoe race, but the 9:00am start time made that unrealistic. Instead, I spent the day hanging out with the little lady. Certainly, not a bad option.

"Sup, dawg?"

Onto the numbers...

1/31, Sunday: 5 - 50:49, Windham. Met up with a bunch of Trail Monsters to celebrate/congratulate Blaine on his 1 More Mile for Sunshine challenge. Blaine and Erin hosted a Fat Ass from his house with Blaine running all 50k. I ran 5 miles, mostly with Mindy. Nice day, good times, felt good.

2/1, Monday: 5 - 44:09, Topsham Snowmobile Trails. Great run until I broke through an ice bridge and smashed my left knee. Frozen peas on the knee all night.

2/2, Tuesday: 4 - ~40:00, Nordic Meisters at Great Glen Trails. 10:00 warmup on snowshoes. 2 mile snowshoe course: 19:04. 10:00 warmdown on the road. Fourth week of Nordic Meisters, and the conditions were the fastest yet. Felt really good; better than expected on the heels of Sidehiller. Broke toe pieces off cleats on both snowshoes. Emailed Bob Dion, and he was very willing to send me the ice cleats to replace the standards—I've already broken 4 cleats this season. Hopefully, the ice cleats will hold up better. Knee was fine.

2/3, Wednesday: 5 - 43:53, Topsham Snowmobile Trails. Felt a bit sluggish at first, but felt great by the end.

2/4, Thursday: 9 - 1:12:39, Simpson's Point. Great day for a run to the ocean, even with the gusty winds. (OK, the winds really sucked in some places.) Didn't mean to run the loop that fast, but I just felt good. I'll take it.

2/5, Friday: Off

2/6, Saturday: 3 - 27:17, Powerlines. Due to schedules, I had to get up and go early. I hate that. Felt not that great. It was also 10 degrees.

Miles: 31
Trail: 21
Road: 10

That makes up a really good week for me. I may be jinxing myself by typing this, but I'm feeling pretty good about the state of my running right now. I can't remember when I've felt this sharp. I have to admit, I definitely missed racing today. I might be addicted. Speaking of addicted, next week my plan is to race Frosty's Dash for a Cure, a snowshoe race in Atkinson, NH, but unless the forecast changes, I doubt there will be enough snow. So, if that race gets "grounded" out, I'll probably jump into the Polar Bear 5k in Portland. Let's hope for snow.

This week's super awesome retro tune:

Monday, February 1, 2010

Training Week 1/24 - 1/30

New feature here at Snowman Says: a weekly review of my training. Why? Because it's super exciting. OK, not really. I just thought it would be a good way for me to step back and take a good look at my training log. I find myself just entering and walking away. So, really, it's all about me.

But, wait there's more! I'll be posting a super-awesome retro song of the week that I've been listening to over the last week. So, see you get something, too: a terrifying glimpse into the music/noises my head.

One note on my training log: I just use a regular planner, not a fancy-schmancy training log, so my weeks start on Sunday. Apparently, this is weird. I'm OK with that.

Onto the numbers...

1/24, Sunday: 2.25 - 20:54, Georgetown roads. Met D while she was finishing her long run from my parents' house.

1/25, Monday: 5.5 - 44:52, Middle Bay. Absolute monsoon, and windy. Felt sluggish and tight...almost drowned.

1/26, Tuesday: Off

1/27, Wednesday: 6 - 44:13, Bike Path. Marathon pace run: 7:15/7:27/7:16/7:26/7:16/7:30. 7:27 was the pace I was looking for, so I was happy to be under that. The last mile reflects me actually relaxing because I didn't want to be too far ahead. It wasn't an easy workout, but it certainly didn't break me.

1/28, Thursday: 6 - 50:23, Mt. Ararat Loops. Nighttime, Blizzard. Best part about the run was not getting run over. Tough to tell if I was tired from Wednesday or just thrown off because it was dark and snowing and windy and moderately dangerous.

1/29, Friday: 3 - 26:49, Highland Green Out-n-Back. Cold and really windy. Felt tight.

1/30, Saturday: 7. Sidehiller Snowshoe Race

Miles: 29.75
Trail: 7
Road: 22.75

Way too many road miles this week. Just kind of happened that way. I was very pleased with the pace run, but, overall, I felt a little off for most of the week. Well, until, Saturday, so I guess I'll take that.

And, what you've really been waiting for:

Depeche Mode is tremendous. I will not argue this point.