American Fork 1/2 Marathon AKA

My new PR!!!!  I've been dancing around 2:25 and 2:30 forever.   My new PR was achieved in American Fork, Utah.  It was at altitude with some wildfire smoke in the air.  The elevation chart is below.

Yes, we started around 6400 feet above sea level and finishes about 4600 feet above sea level.  Where I live is about 400 feet above sea level.  And yes people, it was downhill most of the race.  However, I ran almost a minute per mile faster that I have in any other 1/2 marathon that ended 4000 feet above sea level higher than where I train.  4000 feet people!

My final time and the wonderful American Fork 1/2 marathon was:
This is not 1 minute, not 5 minutes, but 11+ minutes faster than my last PR.  (Southern California 1/2 marathon 2:25:15)

Some things have changed since that southern California race.  I've been having heel pain for a while.  I finally went to a podiatrist who put me in "running boots"  (really he told me to meet him halfway and get regular, neutral running shoes.  No more vibrams until the pain is gone.)  Apparently my calves are really tight.  I've been stretching everyday.  I've also given in to a course of anti-inflammatories.  But this is a story for another post.

The longest I'd run in the last 3 weeks was 8 miles.

I'm still riding high off this PR and the knowledge that at the very least, 5 minutes of this is PR is legit off a flat race.  This makes all the hard work, the slugging through miles with dead legs, the waking up early on day's the bean is at his dad's and I can sleep in, completely worth it.

There is no amount of ranting, complaining, crying, or pouting that will achieve your goals. I won't get anywhere wishing and hoping.  Wishing and hoping are good to get you stared planning.  But plan you must.  A training plan, a transition back to work plan, a get me out of this horrible place plan.  Then execute.  

Somewhere along the way, I stopped obsessing about the final goal.  I stopped beating myself up because I wasn't already at an 8 minute mile.  I put my head down and ran.  I drug myself out of bed after long nights or when it looked cold or hot or whatever outside.  When I was tired during a run, I repeated my mantra, 'This is where the work is done." and I kept running.  

Now to defend this PR in Chicago...


I'm not fast, I always finish

I'm finally back.  Back here and back in the pool.  I ran Ragnar So Cal last month and a guy in my van, who I'd met once or twice before, but didn't really know, and I got to talking about triathlons.  He was on the triathlon team when he was at USC (yes, there was a lot of SC talk, too).  And I got bitten by the bug.

Why am I not in the water?  Why am I not on the bike?  What is keeping me from getting back, other than the insane cost of races?

Nothing.  I can add 1200-2000 yards in between Mommy and me swim class and lunch.  I can get in the pool late at night.  In fact, I realized I actually like swimming.  I liked being in the pool.  It used to be my least favorite of the 3 sports.

Getting back on the bike is a different story.  I've been thinking about getting a baby seat for my mountain bike, I just haven't yet.  I have a trailer, but I'm scared to ride with it on the streets.  I'll figure that one out later.  I know I can pull out a slow 12 or even 24 miles.

Today I swam 1200 yards.  The bulk was 4x25 - 2x50- 100- 2x50- 4x25- 2x50-100- 2x50- 4x25.  I'm still slow, but I finished it.  My first and last 25s were very close (34sec vs 35).  Yay cardiovascular endurance, boo to being slow.  Although, this was pretty much my same 25 yard time from the last time I was training, so yay me?

Earlier last month I did a 1500 yard time trial in 28 minutes.  Last week I swam 2100 yards, which included multiple 100 and 200 yard "sprints".

If any of you have a swim workout you think I should try, send it on over.  I will finish it.  Even if it takes me 2 hours.  I have mentally train for the 2.4 mile swim some how, right?  Right.

So here's to seeing me around more often.  I really need to log more of my training results somewhere.  At least here you all can laugh at my mistakes with me.  (you shouldn't drink lots of coffee before a race, and get at least 4 hours of sleep.  You'll thank me for this advice later.)


New Year's Resolutions

2011 is gone and left behind experiences. Some I'd like to change, some I'd like to do again, all I've learned something from. But here are my goals and habits for 2012:

Be kinder to myself
Run 5 times a week
Read every night
Set things right
Journal More
Be kinder to myself

Run a marathon
PR a 1/2 marathon
Write a race report for EVERY race
Run 5 new races
Purge stuff
Read 1 book a month

Be Kinder to Myself:
It is no mistake that this is listed twice. I am my own worst critic. My faults are enormous in my eyes. My poor decisions life changingly disastrous. I need to remember that I am human and I am awesome. I make more good decisions than bad. Most of my faults can easily be changed into assets. All I can do is lead with my mind and heart (as appropriate) and understand that people have their own demons and how they react is not a reflection on me. That the universe is not conspiring against me. This is where I need to be, even if it's not where I want to be and I don't know why I'm here.

Run 5 Times a Week:
"Running is not what I do, but it's what makes everything I do okay." When I run, everything is better. I feel more confident, sexier, smarter, more in tune with me. I need to get rid of the excuses and go.

Read Every Night:
I love to read. I hate not being able to talk to my friends about books they've read or what I'm reading. I hate saying, "It's on my list" or "It's on my bookshelf". I can get into bed 30 minutes earlier every night and get my read on. (I can't believe I typed that either)

Set Things Right:
Whether it be in my house, in my car, or in my relationships, I want to set things right. I am starting to realize clutter is not just physical. I need to clear my mind of the what ifs, if only, wish I could change this. I also need to implement a filing system and clean some drawers out.

Journal More:
After some reflecting I've come to realize that I need to write shit down. Talking things through, over and over and over again (as some of my friends can attest to) is how I process them. I wonder if I had kept up my journal after I got married would I have seen problems sooner. Not just in our relationship, but in my job satisfaction, my body image, everything. I've been lax about documenting my thoughts over the last year, and I want to change that. Writing shit down brings it to the forefront of my mind. I can't run from it if it is there in black (or blue) and white (or cream).

As for the Goals:
I've signed up for the LA Marathon and have also targeted CIM.

I PR'd the Southern California 1/2 after thinking I would have to walk some of it (race report coming soon)

I need to remember what I did right and what didn't work for me, that's where the reports come in. Also, I had a hell of a time searching for my times from races in 2011 to see if the Southern California 1/2 was a PR. I need to fix that.

I've signed up for The Tinkerbell 1/2 at Disneyland (1/29), Rock n Roll 1/2 in New Orleans (3/4), LA Marathon (3/18). I've targeted CIM, but haven't signed up. Also, I have the Heartbreak Ridge 1/2 on my radar. That's 5. I'm excited. In fact, I'm signing up for Heartbreak Ridge as soon as I check my credit card balance.

Purge stuff goes along with my habit to set things right. After moving last year I realized I have way too much stuff. Way too much. Bean has toys he has outgrown. I have hobbies I've outgrown. I have clothes I'll never wear again. Shoes I... no, that's going to far. The shoes and bags are off limits for now.

I love to read. Hopefully I'll get through 12 books this year if I read for at least 30 minutes a day. I hope.

Thanks for taking the time to read this. I'm happy I took the time to write it.