Monday, September 15, 2014

Something for the First Time - Long Run

This blog post was inspired by an Instagram photo I saw today after my 11 mile run.
I love Team All American's Instagram photos - very inspirational. 

When I saw the post I began thinking of the last time I did something for the first time. I love remembering my first triathlon, my first marathon, my first Ironman, my first 50K. You never forget a race distance you did for the first time.
Then I remembered that just this morning I did something for the first time: I ran a new training run course that I had been thinking about for a long time, tried doing twice but ended up cutting it short and not running it.

I had every excuse not to do the full loop I had in mind: 1) I didn’t really know how long it was 2) I wasn’t really sure if I would have enough water 3) there was no turning around once I started into the 6th mile.

I wanted to do the loop on Sunday for my prescribed long run so I could really know the distance but I got up late and wasn’t motivated to run. I waited until 7am to get out the front door and the sun was already over the mountains and temps were creeping up into the 80s. I ran 2.5 miles and decided to turn around for a disappointing 5 mile run.

However, Monday dawned and I woke up fairly early (5am). I felt guilty about my lack of long run this weekend and Duke City Marathon is in 5 weeks. I needed time on my feet.
At 6:30 I was out the door unsure of how far I would go.

This time, when I hit the point where I would continue on the loop or turn back for 3 miles (known) back home, I kept going. At mile 6 I entered the unknown.I didn't know how long or how far it would be back to my house.

At Mile 7 I ate my Gel and took this picture:

At Mile 8 I started to worry about running out of water. I had fleeting thoughts of calling my friend Kassandra to come pick me up. At Mile 8.5 I saw a Walmart and ran in to fill up my Camebak at the McDonald in the entry way. Lucky. 

At Mile 9 I was worrying that I would be late for work, not knowing how long it was going to take to get back home.

By the time I hit Mile 9.5 I knew I was at least 30 minutes away and I would do this.
It was hot, it felt like 100 degrees.
I was sweaty and gross.
At Mile 10 all my negative thoughts passed.

At Mile 11 I was done. And happy I was not dead and wouldn't be late for work.
I got it done. It was stressful, like most unknowns are. I worried a lot. I ran a bit faster than I would normally run on a long run.

I like this route, it’s primarily on the Loop in Oro Valley: paved, off the road, and shady in parts.
It was a good training day.

P.S. Running the Duke City Marathon will be my first race in New Mexico. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Shoe Review - Topo Athletic MT

I was asked to try the Topo Athletic MT shoe and here is my review of the shoe:

Topo Athletic MT - Women's 11- so pretty. And Winnie-dog didn't eat them.
Where: I wore this shoe on trails and road. I also wore the shoe for two indoor cardio classes

When: In the heat of a Tucson summer.

Trails –
These shoes are best on trail, and shorter distance trail runs.
First, I’m not a small woman: 5’9, 155 llbs on a good day. I love minimalist shoes and have been running on minimalist shoes for two years. A smaller framed woman might feel differently about wearing them for longer distances.  

I really like these shoes because they feel light on my feet. When I run more than 5 miles on trails I fatigue early which leads me to the conclusion that I should wear these shoes on hill repeats and shorter recover runs.

And, I have a bunion on my left foot and the wide toe box is very accommodating.

The Road -
This shoe is primarily a trail shoe however I did run on the road a bit and found that they just weren’t comfortable for me. I noticed a pronation on the foot strike which worried me since I know I pronate; just never saw it until now. Again, a smaller framed woman may feel different.

Indoor Exercise -

Since you have to wear some type of shoe for indoor cardio class, I wore these shoes. I really liked them for the intense cardio class. Since I also have a neuroma on my left foot I need a wider shoe (not wide size).

Overall Grade - B+
I will continue to wear on trail runs and plan to wear them for the Thanksgiving Cross-Country Classic at Reid Park in in Tucson when I want to be FAST. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Trilife - I'm back

It feels so good to be back to normal.

Normal meaning swimming, biking, running AND writing. It is really eye opening to see all the limitations with a broken pinky. The simplest tasks pouring, typing, hair brushing are much more difficult,. I still can't make a fist.

However, I'm progressing with triathlon. This week I got on my bike three times. It felt so good to just pedal. I’m staying on roads with bike lanes for the foreseeable future. I crashed on Moore Road which doesn’t have a bike lane. I probably will never bike on that road again.

Getting in the pool this week and swimming without sinking was a big victory, too. I can’t injure or hurt my pinky, I’m just not using my left hand fully which makes all the fingers stiff. I swam 800 yards Saturday and 1000 on Sunday. Feels so good to swim. 

My tri life is back in order. I’m still running more than anything since I have several running races coming up.

In October, a trail half marathon and marathon.
In November, Ragnar Trail Relay and a 50K.
In December, a marathon and perhaps, if training goes well, a 50Miler.

The most important race is May 2015 – Ironman Texas. And if I can get in, November 2015 – Ironman Arizona.
I’m off to meet a friend to run, and then a bike ride – everything is back in order.