Thursday, June 28, 2012

Three Picture Thursday

Hit the treadmill for a few easy recovery miles on Tuesday. Jerk Shin was being a little shady, but otherwise everything feels fine. Wanted 4, finished 3, and spent 15 minutes on the bike pretending to make up for it. Tested out my new Brooks Glycerine 10's....
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Verdict: Love.


For the first time in EVER, there are ACTUALLY race pictures that I don't hate. Some, I even like....
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I just cannot get over charging $40 to download A SINGLE PHOTO.


One of my team members brought me a cupcake for breakfast.
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It would just be rude to turn that down.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Rock n' Roll Seattle - the not running part

First, unrelated, but I love a good deal, I love compression, and I love orange.  Lucky for me, Pro Compression is now launching their Marathon sock in ORANGE. You may recall that Pro Compression was one of our sponsors for Team So Much Cooler Online Ragnar SoCal a few months ago, and their magic baby blue socks saved my legs during the 203.5 mile relay.

You can buy your very own orange compressiony socks HERE, AND, you when you do that, you should also use coupon code SOM610 for 40% off (making the socks $30, with free shipping, I KNOW). Code expires July 10th!


So, if you missed the recap where I'm a giant quitting whiner, you can read it here.

Friday, I flew into SEA around 1:30, and took the light rail up to the expo. I am freakish, and I LOVE public transportation. It's one of the highlights of any trip for me, and I try to figure it out when I travel. It's like a fun challenge. Also, it's cheap, and way less stressful than renting a car. I hate driving in strange places. And based on all the driving that other people did while I sat in the back seat, I would have REALLY hated driving in Seattle. Awful.

Quick run through the expo, and then it was time for a blogger meetup, hosted and organized by Tall Mom, with John Bingham speaking.


After the expo, Kim and S drove me to Alma's house....
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hint: it's not here....

And the three of us got ready to head back into downtown Seattle for the Brooks/Online Shoes Girls Night Out event.
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After they (carb) loaded us up...
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...we had the opportunity to hear a bit about the Brooks story, the Run Happy philosophy, and dig into some fun shoe design details. Brooks is solely (ha, get it?) a running company - that's their thing, their focus.

They gave us a sneak peek at a new shoe, the Pure Drift, that will be released for sale soon.... 5.1 oz, and only $100 price point.
It has a low drop (I think 4mm?? But don't quote me on that....), but you can ALSO remove the sock liner to make it a total 0 drop shoe. Interesting!

We were all invited to try on the shoes from Brooks Pure Project line, and their Core line...

My picks? The Brooks Glycerine 10 (grey/pink on my right foot) and the Brooks Pure Flow (purple on my left foot)

I'm normally a Saucony girl, but I've been dying to try out the Pure Flow for awhile.
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so purple!!

HUGE thanks to and Brooks for a super fun night!

Saturday evening, I was kind of a disaster. Luckily, Hotel Alma was open, has a couch, and a tv. We watched a Motley Crue documentary, and the track trials, and then I crashed.

Sunday morning, Alma and fam took me to Alki Beach

...and her #1 favorite bakery. Followed by Pikes Place Market, and her #2 favorite bakery. I love anyone with a #1 and a #2 favorite bakery.

And then ice cream.

And then Target, to buy a new bag. I was super stoked on my way in that I fit everything I needed into ONE backpack. And then I got all the things, and....
all the things no longer fit in a backpack.....

After an argument with the TSA chick about her phone scanning device not working meaning I needed to get out of line, print a boarding pass, then get BACK in the line I just spent 25 minutes in, I boarded my flight, with my connection in SLC. Apparently, I only managed to leave myself 28 minutes between flights? And snagged myself a seat in the very back of the plane? Oops. When I fiiiiinally got to the gate, the agent  greeted me with, "Oh, you must be Heather.".

Yep. Sure am.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Sometimes, I'm a drama queen. RnR Seattle Marathon Recap

Quick, last week recap:
Thursday: 5 miles, Back Bay, 3 at MGP, easy
Saturday: read below.

This week:
Tuesday: 4 miles
Thursday: 5 miles
Saturday: 11 miles
Sunday: 3 miles

It's almost as if I only left myself 34 days until my next marathon.....
So. Rock n' Roll Seattle Marathon.....

Becka, L, and I stayed an easy .75(ish) mile walk to the starting area, which seemed SUPER awesome after seeing the traffic. Traffic in Seattle? Ridiculous.

The starting line is in City Center, right under the Space Needle.
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We had Brooks VIP bathroom passes
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real bathrooms, with real water...
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and these happy people holding tray's full of goodies.
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Why, yes, I WILL run HAPPY

We started in corral 24, and it took about 35 minutes before we crossed the start line...
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Mile 1-5: 11:01, 10:24 (downhill), 11:15 (slight uphill), 10:42, 10:38
These miles started heading south through downtown, past the Nuun station at mile 2, and nothing else super exciting to mention. Mostly I was just excited that the weather seemed to be cooperating - overcast and cool. The bands on course (roughly one every mile ish) were okay, the spectators were fun.
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Mile 6-10: 11:54 (hill), 10:48, 14:04 (bathroom), 10:38, 11:29
Mile 6 brought a pretty big hill...
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there are tiny people up at the top, I swear.
...and I walked it - on purpose, I 100% planned to walk any tough uphills. I know they aren't my strength, and I didn't want to trash my legs on something that wouldn't gain me any time. We split from the half marathon course just before mile 6...
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And ran along Lake Washington...
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And then looped around Seward Park...
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PS, the water tasted funky. We quickly figured out why.
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Eff you, RnR.

Mile 11-15: 12:56 (bathroom), 11:04, 10:26, 11:24, 11:13
We headed out of Seward Park, hit the same restroom area as we did on our way in, and ran along the water again on Lake Washington, up to a random point just past the I-90 bridge, then looped back onto the bridge. There was a mile here dedicated to fallen soldiers...
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There was another stretch somewhere with a similar dedication to LLS, but I literally look the other way when I see that stuff while I'm running. The alternative is I cry every time, and it's REALLY hard to run and cry simultaneously.
Nothing else super exciting here. I felt fine. Still hitting roughly where I want to be - slight variations if there's an uphill/downhill, but that was how I planned to be running...

Mile 16-20: 11:18, 13:42, 11:45, 14:23 (walking the tunnel), 11:59
And then The Bridge Of Death. This sucked. We ran out onto a bridge...
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It was suddenly a thousand hundred degrees, the sun came out, and this was completely exposed. No shade. It was kind of nestled between and slightly below two adjacent bridges, so no shade, no breeze. I swear the temperature rose like 15*. It sucked. For real.
I feel like these times must be wrong, because I swear I thought I was dying.
At the end of the Bridge of Death, we went into a tunnel. A tunnel that was maybe a mile-ish long, and banked like a damn race track. I am not exaggerating.
Do you know what's remarkably hard to run on? Super banked road at mile 17. The only highlight was running into Lesley on the out and back, and she was only 2 miles or so behind us. So I ran/walked it through the first time, and straight up walked it on the way back. I joked (kind of) that I was done running, and would only run downhills from now on... {foreshadowing}

Mile 21-23 23:42, 6:18, 14:19
Ha. I know. 21 was another bullshit tunnel, 22 was stupid. 23 was no better. Oh, but I took these pictures...
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And then it started pouring fucking rain. So there were no more pictures.

Mile 24-26.7 14:14 (some downhill to run...), 17:01, 15:42, 10:25
....and then I for REAL ran no more. I kind of just.... quit. I didn't care that it was raining. I didn't care that I was carrying my phone and ipod in the rain (I mean, I care NOW that my phone is being wonky, and I sure hope The H doesn't read all these words...). I didn't care that it hurt LESS to run than it did to walk. I was done. I was pissed. I for real said I'd rather have hypothermia than run one more step on this godforsaken course.
I don't know how Becka and L didn't leave my whiny ass there, on that stupid road, but I kept walking, hoping Lesley would catch up and they could run off and save themselves from my misery. I know. Pretty dramatic.
The stretch from 23.5-25 was on a totally exposed, raised street, that was super hard to walk on, and super awesome to be pelted with pouring rain and cold wind on. But apparently I was really stubborn in my refusal to run another step.
Mile 26 we turned and there was another tunnel, but it was the MOST GLORIOUS TUNNEL IN THE UNIVERSE. We walked through there, to about 25.5, and B convinced me I should run. So I ran. My pace when I crossed the finish line was 8:18. For real.


When we crossed the finish line, grabbed our medals, and mylar, it was FREEZING cold, still pouring rain, and so windy. That mile walk back to the hotel was so much less awesome than it was in the morning.

I am a whiny baby. I was hurting, but certainly not hurt. Not hurting any more than I probably did during training. I COULD run, and running felt fine. I just decided not to. That is the LAMEST THING EVER.
Don't get me wrong - I finished a fucking marathon. That's pretty rad. I'm not even all that annoyed with my time - I was not tied to a certain time goal, so whatever. I'm REALLY okay with a 5:30.
But I quit. I just stopped trying. And that's not really cool. That really annoys me.
Also, I need to work in hill work, and do strength training again. Can't hurt....


So San Francisco is next, but I'm going into that with the same non-goals as Seattle. And hopefully I'll be able to better contain my whiny self.
The rest of the Seattle trip was FANTASTIC. I've got a ton of stuff to cover still! But not today.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Leaving, on a jet plane

I checked in for my flight this morning - and, ps, Delta with their don't-need-to-print-just-scan-your-phone situation? That's the best thing ever.

Also, Delta? Super great at the customer service. After they originally jacked up my flights (no, Delta, I cannot leave at 10am Saturday, I don't think even Kara Goucher could manage that. Maybe Desi.), they finagled some additional changes that please me, and I ended up with a flight I originally looked at that was $150 more than what I booked. Thanks, Delta!

Anyway. So, I guess I'm running a marathon. In, like, 48 hours.

I have really, really simple goals.

Goal A: Finish, without being dead

Goal B: Don't hate it (or my friends that are running with me)

Goal C: Sub 5, and maybe 11-ish avg pace (puts me at 4:48, but sub-5 is all I'm asking for)

I toyed around extensively with McMillan post PCRF PR and the 5k PR a few weeks ago, and with my Yasso's right before that, and the consensus was 4:35-ish is doable.

But the more I thought about trying to race for 26 miles, the less fun that sounded.

26.2 miles is hella far.

And despite training, you just never know what is going to happen, y'know?

So, yeah, I'm 100% taking the easy road. I've got a strategy, one that involves walking at certain times, and I'm cool with that.

I've got a couple other races in the next 7-8 months, and plenty of time to work on speed and figuring out how my body actually for REAL handles the marathon distance. It would really suck (and probably mess with my tiny brain a bit) if Seattle was awful and I hated it. My plan is specifically designed to make it challenging a little bit, but mostly enjoyable. Hopefully I succeed.

My long runs were all successful. I started this training cycle in March (SOO LONG AGO!). My long runs, in order:
16 @ 11:18 avg pace
18 @ 12:10
20 @ 12:08
20 @ 11:33
16 @ 10:55
18 @ 11:14
22 @ 11:03 <---!!!!!

I put in 440 miles in this cycle. I bonked on that first 18. I jacked up my fueling and bonked HARD on that 22. I ran in the Hot, on that first 20. I ran in the rain, on that first 16. I ran 18 miles after work, unfueled and tired.

My playlist is ready, with 5 hours of every Lemonheads/Evan Dando song recorded. I only kind of wish I made that up. Shannon, that's #real.

So I guess I'm prepared. I'm guessing at LEAST I won't die.



Friday, I'll be at the Expo around 1:30 and plan on hitting the Tall Mom meetup at 3, and the Brooks/Online Shoes event Friday evening. Hope to meet some internet friends this weekend, and excited to run with some of my favorite people on Saturday!

Alma is taking me to eat delicious things on Sunday, because she is awesome. I mean, she does know Evan Dando, so how could she NOT be.

Cheers to not dying, friends.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Wet n' Wild 5k Recap

Last week:
Wednesday: 3 miles, MGP
Saturday: Wet n' Wild 5K, 3.1 mile walk/sometimes run
Sunday: 5 miles easy pace, 1 mile walk

I take my taper super, super serious. I'm all about recovery time.

This week:
Tuesday: 5 miles, MGP
Thursday: 4 miles
Saturday: 26.2 miles, hopefully at MGP.


Wet n' Wild 5k is a local race benefiting Strong Tower Ministries, a non-profit organization helping feed, cloth, educate, and rescue destitute children living locally in Orange County and Baja California, Mexico.

Last year, the race was held in August, started at 8am, and in Irvine. I ran it (recap here) and wasn't super stoked about it, except for the part where I met Rose. The course was ugly and boring and weird and it was a billion hundred degrees.

So I wasn't planning on running again this year, until Margot forwarded a Schwaggle for $15! Dude, for $15, I'll run almost anything. DONE.

Super long, dumb story short, I didn't ACTUALLY register with the Schwaggle, and had to register last minute, and paid $20 more than I wanted to.


This year, the race was moved to Knott's Berry Farm and Knott's Soak City, with a 7:30 start.

Shannon and I carpooled, and quickly found Madison, then headed over to packet pick up. Julie, her friend, and her brother found us shortly after.

It was kind of chaos. The signs were fine, the volunteers were nice. But they ran out of twisty tie things for the timing chips, and safety pins for the bibs. Odd. Also, without anyone being able to pin bibs on, I'm kind of annoyed that I legit registered...

You can tell we race, though, because extra safety pins were located. Crisis averted.
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There was also only one bathroom - and we were just getting in line for it when they started the race. oops.

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Oh, how quaint. Pace groups.

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The course runs through Knott's Berry Farm, through Soak City, and then through 1/3 mile of the lazy river.
We leisurely started the race...
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We were a little ridiculous.
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Ridiculously cute.

.And fun.

We even ran a little.

It was a really, really hard race.
I was a little sad we hadn't thought of this first. But next time....
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Then the lazy river.
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It was COLD. Also, it was much shallower than last year - like, below waist deep, instead of chest deep - which made it actually NOT EASY. I have a newfound respect for anyone that does water aerobics. Holy cow.

Official time, 56:13.

Most of these pictures were stolen from Madison, and her recap is fantastic. Check it out HERE.


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