“Start where you are” and Half Marathon training!

Hi! Been a while! I went home up North last week and a good friend said, “it’s like you moved to Mars! How is it??” ahahahaha (Love you, Shelby!)

She was describing it like that in a good way, and I totally agreed with her. I moved to another planet to put my head down and work hard to get myself a new career! It’s been very busy, but not too busy to forget about my number one passion, which you all know is running. That being said, after that DNF at the Okanagan Marathon and finally addressing my IT band syndrome, I definitely haven’t been running as much as usual. AND THAT’S OKAY! I can see that now. Lol. #olderandwiser

I used to have this serious fear of losing any of the fitness I worked so hard to accumulate over the two years I worked with Lifelong Endurance. Due to student life, I don’t have a coach right now, but turns out that’s totally fine during this piece of life. As runners, we gain more and more knowledge about the sport and training as we move along, gathering experience through training cycles, races, rest periods and injury, etc. That’s really cool, but I find it equally as interesting when I think about all that I DIDN’T know in the past, and how much I still have to learn. This rest period has given me the chance to really think about this.

One thing I thought I understood (but totally didn’t) and believed I was respecting (but wasn’t at all) is the need for adequate recovery. I’ve brought this up before and here we are again. I’m talking about both recovery within a training cycle, as well as recovery between cycles. That little set-back after the Ok Marathon was something I really needed. Thanks, Universe! It’s also given me time to think about how fatigued I felt pretty much all the time when I was running six or seven days a week and how it really compromised the quality of my runs.

My fear of losing fitness left the building a while ago. Now that I’ve rehabbed my ITBS, taken it easy more than I have in years and done some planning with respect to my new life schedule, it’s go time. The concept of Start Where You Are is exciting, because I don’t really know.

After hearing my friend rave about the FIRST Run Less, Run Faster book and training program, I’ve decided to give it a try. If you aren’t familiar, this is a program based on three key workouts per week – a track workout, a tempo run and a faster-than-usual (for me) long run, and no other running. At least two cross-training sessions fill in the holes where easy running would usually be, and for me, it will be swimming and pool running. I think this will work perfectly with my schedule, and also being not-so-good at recovery runs. The three runs are pace-specific, based on one’s current fitness level. Which takes me back to the cliché quote “START WHERE YOU ARE.

What is my current fitness level? I actually don’t know! The first thing that happened when I needed a “recent” 5k or 10k time to select target paces for the half marathon training plan was… my ego chirped in and started making suggestions as to avoid running a fitness test.

“that 10k PR was only eight weeks ago…bump it down a bit”

“You can definitely run faster than that 5k PR during that long run fast finish last year”

“use that 10k time from six weeks back, it wasn’t the best race so it’s not overly optimistic”

“just guess, your goals are based on much more than current fitness”

No, no, NO! I’ve raced one 5k in my life, and I haven’t raced whatsoever since Thanksgiving, which was long distance. I don’t have any idea of what a 5k race effort would be today and I haven’t done any fast running since September. I took a few weeks off completely for injury and since have been running two to three times per week (usually very slowly), eating shitty, and I’ve only done a couple of vertical training sessions with P.A.C.E. when it comes to workouts. Because I don’t want to set myself up for frustration, disappointment or emotional abuse from the inner critic (that dick), I am going to do this honestly.

There is a really good chapter in the book called Realistic Goals. It is fantastic. Some of the things touched on are why/how exactly we establish the unrealistic goals we often do, how to set a realistic goal based on current fitness, how we often undermine our results (even when they’re impressive) and why selecting arbitrary, round-number finish time goals can easily fuck us over. So good!

So, my first track workout tomorrow for Week 1 will actually be the suggested 3 x 1600 (plus rests, plus math formula) to get an estimate of a 5k race pace. I might surprise myself, or I could be like, oh fuck…way too many Halloween chocolate bars. Who knows. But I want to follow the training program properly, and there’s always the option to reassess along the way!

I’m stoked to hit the track tomorrow, find out where exactly I’m at, and start from there. Yahoo! Who’s planning for 2019? I plan to run First Half in Vancouver on February 10th, which is 13 weeks away, and the 10k at the Tenacious Ten in April in Seattle. That’s it for now! Hope you’re having an awesome Fall!

Jamie xo

 

 

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My first DNF and what comes with it…

Hi. I’m so sad. But I’m happy, too. Also proud. Angry. Frustrated. Hahahaha. So many emotions over here right now!!

Sunday was my first DNF, which for those who aren’t familiar, means Did Not Finish. There are many old sayings about finishing no matter what, crawling across the finish line if necessary, doing WHATEVER it takes, etc, which are total bullshit when real pain is involved. But still, versions of these quotes were swirling around my head for the good part of an hour before I had to make the call.

I have a confession to make (mostly to myself, LOL). I AM INJURED. FML. There I said it ahahaha. The denial has been going on for over a month. I’ve been experiencing moderate to sometimes intense lateral knee pain during most runs, especially long ones, and after. Not every single day or sustained, but it’s sore or painful in the morning, while running, going up and down stairs, hovering over the brake pedal, and even walking when it’s flared up. Pretty sure this stems from the excessive sitting I’ve done since going back to school. Close to an hour in the truck each way, plus 4-6 hours of sitting in class daily, depending on what we’re doing. As my friend Karmen says, “sitting is evil.” She says this because it’s true. It shortens, tightens and weakens multiple areas that are important for running.

On Sunday morning the marathon began and I felt good but a bit paranoid, wondering how it would go with respect to the right lateral knee. By 4k I felt some sensation, but nothing worrisome, and the rest of me felt great. I continued to be aware of tension in the problem area and so I didn’t want to walk through aid stations – a characteristic of ITBS is pain upon stopping-restarting. It kept getting more and more noticeable, becoming uncomfortable, and then at a water station ~24k I paused briefly to properly drink, and as I resumed running I felt pain to the point that it took my breath away.

FUCKKKKK!!!!!“…I saw two spectators look at me like, whoa she’s going down, but I felt it out and got to jogging, hoping it would calm down, which it just barely.

At this point I started the chat in my head. Totally fine with slowing down – this was not a goal race and I was doing it simply because I love this shit. But I did slow way down and it still hurt badly! I had tears in my eyes, a combination of pain plus just knowing this was a bad sign. Then I asked myself if maybe I could truly jog, like sloowww. I don’t care if it takes me six hours to finish this thing. But that didn’t work either. Every step felt like I was doing harm to my body. I took some walk breaks but it still hurt, as walking still requires knee flexion..

By now I was on my way south to pass City Park for the second time (it’s a two-loop course) and I asked myself if I could make it twelve more kilometers safely. The answer was no 😦

It really was the best choice – to stop repetitively flexing and extending a joint that was causing me pain, and which was getting more aggravated and inflamed with every step. So I called it. I walked onto the grass in the park and started un-pinning my bib. It was so sad, like an extremely emo music video or bad part of a romantic comedy. LOL. There was no ugly crying but I wanted to.

I felt embarrassed, which is ridiculous because I made a wise, responsible decision. But still. I folded my bib in half so no one could see the colour, went and collected my gear-check bag and put on my sweatshirt quickly and put away my sunglasses and headband. I was soooo sad you guys. I am sad. The inner critic spoke up and made it worse:

“you SERIOUSLY couldn’t have gone twelve more kilometers?”

“how bad could it have actually hurt?”

“there must have been a way to finish?”

I limped out and waited for my friend Joey to finish, happy cried for him and sad cried for me. Had a brief visit with another friend, Gary, who smashed his sub 1:30 half goal, and slowly made my way to the truck.

Now I’m sitting here (with my right leg propped up) writing about this. It’s still bothering me. I’m mad at school, because that’s where I sit all day. I’m frustrated with my body because it isn’t allowing me to do my favourite thing in the entire world. I am so upset that I didn’t cross the finish-line, yet proud for being responsible. I’m happy that what’s going on can very likely be healed with rest, different therapy approaches and strength training, but I’m fuckin annoyed that I have to now initiate operation get un-injured!!!! I’m also worried about how long it will take to get fully better and how much fitness I’ll lose. Sigh.

In one day I got a reality check about so many things. The importance of rest. How crucial it is to address little things that feel off before they turn into bigger problems. The fact that I haven’t actually taken even a partial off-season in the last two and a half years, and now I’m being forced to. How hard it is to check the ego and call it off in a race or even a training run. To honestly differentiate between discomfort and pain, and between what’s safe or unsafe.

It’s interesting to me that I was beating myself up about this, and still am a little. If a friend of mine told me this story, I would commend them for making a smart choice and not causing more injury or prolonging the rehab period. Why are we mean to ourselves, but not others???

So now..I’ll get to devising a rehabilitation plan that will include a lot of yoga, swimming, clam shells and pool running, if it feels okay. Getting better is a goal of its own, and great things seem to happen after set-backs so I look forward to what will happen after I take this time to heal up. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, some things I’m thankful for with respect to the weekend’s DNF:

  • it wasn’t a goal race
  • nothing is broken, torn, detached, etc.
  • I can still swim and do as much yoga as I want
  • I will rest and recover, ease back into it, and hit the next running related goal HARD

I hope you had an awesome long weekend, and if you raced, I hope it went well! So many I people I know ran fantastic half and full marathons, smashing goals related to both time and mental strength. For anyone dealing with an injury right now, I get it, and for anyone who has or does find themself in a painful DNF situation, remember what I’m telling myself…

Listen to the body.

There are many, many races to come.

Rest and recover now so that there’s the choice to continue in the future.

 

TTYS xoxoxo Jamie

 

 

 

 

Adult marathon addict goes back to school…LOL.

Hi!

AHH!! The adjustments happening right now in my life are major! From the summer off work to full days of school, small town to a city, no commute to an hour each way…no traffic to traffic. Add on top the fact that I actually care this time around (LOL) and I’m swamped! I was texting today with my friend Ali, we did our pharmacy degrees together years ago, and I told her this:

Ali. The tables have turned. I AM NOW KEEN.

Thank God for this! The RMT program used to be three years but now it’s jammed into two! Me and my classmates’ lives are kind of over. I better be keen! But, HOW is a person supposed to fit in regular exercise, let alone legit training, amongst meal prep (no income, no buying lunches!), commuting, over six hours of classes a day, more commuting, studying (even already, yes), chores and trying not to forget about EATING, SLEEPING and communication with family and friends? People with kids are like stfu hahaha

HAHAHA poor me! Just kidding, don’t worry, I know I’m not the first person in history to have a very full schedule and feel like there aren’t enough hours in a day. I’m just writing about what’s going on with me and the little obsession of mine called running. I like writing about stuff that might be relatable to you reading this in one way or another.

After week one, I’ve made a few conclusions:

  1. I can and will still run often. I can carve out time.
  2. Maybe not QUITE as much as before
  3. If I don’t meal prep and be organized, I’m doomed
  4. For the foreseeable future, I can’t effectively prioritize training like I did before

Just had to read number four again and ask myself if it has to be true, but it does. Unless I wanna not sleep, run myself into the ground or fail school, training has to take a back seat. OKAY THE MIDDLE ROW OF SEATS LIKE IN A MINIVAN.

I did a couple of evening runs, which isn’t my style but I’ll take what I can get, and then I did two experiments that confirmed everything is going to be cool..😅

Morning running in my hood would mean hitting the road when traffic is annoying. But, if I’m up at five and leave the house by six, I can:

  • have an hour to run in Vernon, shower and be seated in class on time (8:30)
  • get to the Sails in Kelowna for November Project on Wednesdays, then make it to school with time to spare
  • be home in West Kelowna around 5pm with time to eat, study, do tasks of life, get ready for the next day and be in bed by 9:30

I will also have lots of time to swim in Vernon in the mornings once the pool opens again. Fewf 😂

This post is so dramatic. I don’t care! Running and training are my true passions and how I stay physically, mentally and spiritually healthy. I refuse to become any kind of unhealthy while becoming a registered massage therapist. I refuse to give up my passion. My husband, home, family, best friends, training buddies and cat all got left behind for this career change endeavor and the one thing I didn’t have to say so-long to was running. I’ve never had to care about time management this much before, but it can be done and I’ll do it! 🙂

The Okanagan Marathon is in four weeks and I will be ready for it! It’s not a goal race, but I’ll be ready for the distance and who knows, maybe I’ll even be prepared to give it my best shot.

Are you going through any challenging adjustments right now?

Jack & Jill’s Downhill Marathon event review and race recap!

I need to start by praising the organizers for the fantastic pre-race communication. Jack & Jill’s Downhill Marathon info emails started rolling in ten days before the race and I’d received five, including this exceeds-expectations weather update, by the Friday before!

much appreciated! The forecast was for 36 celsius!

On Friday I drove to Terrace to fly to Vancouver, then on Saturday morning I picked up my rental car and hit the road to North Bend!! Including picking up the car and the wait at the border, it took four hours. Easy.

Package pick up was at the Nike factory store. It was easy to get to and a quick process! The actual bag we got is sweet and was perfect for a gear check bag. It zippers closed with another smaller zipper pocket and a Jack & Jill logo. Runners also received a race buff, which I think is the greatest thing ever! The race shirt is a unisex-style tank (see later in a finish photo) and it’s NICE! There were pace tattoos (which proved to be extremely valuable) and I grabbed one from the 3:35 pile. I was given a small ziplock bag for my tunnel flashlight and my bib number was written on it for me. Other than that, there wasn’t a bunch of random stuff to recycle like at big expos, just a little race pamphlet with info and maps. One thing I forgot was to get a B12 shot, which were apparently available for free! Dang. There was race clothing for sale outside of the store too, but a buff and tank is more than enough for me.

I was in and out and then headed to my AirBnB! It was just a few minutes away from the factory stores, and also just a three minute drive from Tollgate Park parking lot, which is where runners park before getting on the shuttles to the start line. Joan’s place, was perfect for race weekend accommodation and you should stay here! She was great!

I was avoiding “stuff” – I seem to become more of a minimalist with each marathon. I decided against headphones, which also meant I didn’t need to carry my phone. I opted for no sunglasses (good choice, not needed 👌) and I committed to walking through aid stations to take full advantage, therefore eliminating my worry about whether or not I should bring a handheld water bottle. My Nakd bars and Endurance Tap gels fit in the SpiBelt and I was good to go.

I wore my Altra Escalantes for this race, which are a pretty minimal shoe. I’m telling you this because the organizers advise to wear something more substantial, but I didn’t have a second thought about my favourite shoes while running the marathon! No issues at all.

Since I had a pretty late lunch, for “dinner” I had bananas, Nuun, a sea salt bagel and a chocolate protein shake. Then it was bedtime! Time for some fake sleeping!

My alarm woke me up at 3:30, I ate my oatmeal and raisins, drank a bunch of Nuun and geared up. A long-sleeved throwaway shirt was totally sufficient but I’m glad I brought it – it wasn’t that warm yet pre-race! My shuttle time was 5:05 (assigned on the bib) and I left the house around 4:40 for the very short drive to Tollgate Park. The parking situation seemed totally under control. It was dark but there were tons of volunteers with flashlights directing us and I was parked and getting on my bus within five minutes.

Our driver wasn’t sure where to go once it was almost time to exit the freeway towards the starting area… I still don’t actually know if he was joking or not but we all knew which exit and how to proceed thanks to pre-race emails!!

Twenty porto-potties (Honey Buckets 😂😂/😷😷) plus the actual park restroom facility made for lots of toilets, but more would have been better. Close to start time, the lineups were pretty long. That being said, there was lots of bush everywhere to squat in if it came down to it as we were in a park in the forest, after all.

my bus companion, Paul from Wisconsin! It was his birthday!

I planned to use the Race Screen app (data screen) in miles so I could manually lap at some of the mile markers. The tunnel is known to screw with GPS so it was the perfect solution for that, plus not running the tangents ideally has messed me up in the past with overall pace, and this would help with that too! Except that my Garmin went haywire and changed back to kilometers without telling me! I tested it the night before and it was doing everything I wanted!

So, I was running with a screen that showed distance in kilometers, but pace (over the last 30 seconds) in minutes/mile, giving me split times in minutes/kilometer, but on all other data screens showing the distance in miles!!! Ya I’m confused even trying to explain that. The old me would have lost it, but I really couldn’t have cared less!

The race started after the American national anthem. We ran for less than a kilometer on an uneven and loose gravel stretch, and then right into the tunnel! It was dark, cool and echoey.

the Snoqualmie Tunnel!

The ground inside was much better – solid with just a few puddles here and there, but runners called out to those behind them to watch out. Because the floor of the tunnel is kind of domed, it was only really suitable to run about three across. This was perfect because it wasn’t too squishy and there was room to pass if needed. The tunnel felt really short to me but in reality it was over 4km long! So cool! Near the end, it got light enough that I was able to put my flashlight into the ziplock I was carrying long before it was time to toss it into the light collection bucket. Perfect.

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It was in the tunnel that I discovered my watch was being a freak. I decided to run by feel with those around me (we started around where the 3:35 pacer would have been..if there was one..) and then just see what happened once we were out of the tunnel. I had my pace tattoo if my watch fully betrayed me anyway!

Once out of the tunnel, the pacing on my Garmin seemed a bit erratic, but the kilometer split times made sense. I trusted it, but I also consulted the tattoo at every mile marker, comparing it to the “time elapsed” screen on my watch. This is the first time I’ve ever used a pace band and it was awesome! I am sold.

The rest of the course is a very mild downhill on an old gravel road which is the John Wayne Trail and the last part, the Snoqualmie Trail. The surface wasn’t bad at all but it’s worth noting that there were some parts that were fairly loose and rocky. I spent a lot of time with my eyes down, watching where my feet would be landing. But, when I wasn’t looking at the ground, the course was GORGEOUS!!!

not my pic, snagged from the race’s FB page

I had forgotten to switch my wedding rings to my silicone Qalo ring, but instead of letting that bother or worry me, I used it as a way to monitor hydration even closer than I would have and it really worked out for me! When I’m dehydrated my fingers majorly swell. It’s so uncomfortable, especially when wearing a metal ring, so I stayed perpetually aware of my hands and stopped at every single aid station to drink at least one full cup of water, sometimes two. This race is definitely the smartest I’ve ever been with respect to fueling and hydration.

There was an aid station with at least two volunteers every two miles after we came out of the tunnel, just before or after the odd mile markers. I found this to be perfect. More are always better, but there was no time where I found myself thinking they were too far apart. This race was very well aided!

At half way, I was almost two minutes ahead of the pace band. I had been monitoring my stomach and it was a good time to stop at a washroom. There aren’t many toilets along the course because there is no way to get them on to the trail. Like I said before though, in an emergent situation you could probably hide and squat anywhere along the entire course. I was quick and kept going, happy and thankful my gut wasn’t cramping up like it often does post-pit-stop.

After 16 miles, I now had to work harder to focus and stay in it. I’d already been stopping at every aid station to hydrate, but in the last third of the race I definitely had to divide and conquer my way to each station and stopping for water was also a rest. I had packed a tiny vial of peppermint oil inside my top and when I remembered it was there I was pumped. I rubbed it all over my arms and collar bones and the cool tingling seemed to keep my mind and body connected.

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My main mantra for this race was “Fluid, Focused, Fearless” but I also tapped into many of the other things that I pre-planned to focus on when it got more difficult. I thought of:

  • my friends at Ironman Canada in Whistler that same day
  • my friend Anthony who I met at the CIM expo, my friends Laura, Jeph, Steph, Karmen & Adam, and my Rupert Runners crew
  • Coach Andrew reminding me that racing is like boxing – we don’t give up from a couple “hits”. During multiple hard parts I thought, “that was just a little slap” or “one shot to the head can’t take me down“, etc.
  • the strong 10k I ran at the Tyhee Triathlon, when I was very tired, hot and my legs felt like wood
  • my favourite pro, Jordan Hasay
  • the author of Beyond Grit, Cindra Kamphoff
  • the Haida shield that I won the previous weekend, which was in my pocket!
  • my friend Owen and our favourite scene from Schitt’s Creek , which I added on to my mantra, now making it “Fluid, Focused, Fearless. Fold it in!!” HAHAHAHAH.

Why am I telling you all these things? Because it matters. A marathon is a long fuckin race and we need to be armed with perspective shifters, motivators and contingency plans!

The last ~8k of the race were very hard for me, but marathons are hard. Duh. At this point I knew I was too off pace to finish under 3:35, but I was well within breaking 3:40! Ladies and gentleman, the purpose of subsequent goals! I walked for a few seconds multiple times and pep talked myself to keep moving forward! A women who I saw many times (we kept passing each other whenever the other was regrouping) encouraged me and I’m so grateful for that! There was also a spectator who shouted at me in the final stretch “ALRIGHT OISELLE, SWING THOSE ARMS AND FINISH IT!” and I listened!!! Hell yeah, the power of the Volée team gear! Thank you, random man!

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My last mile was strong! Got back to goal pace and finished it off. Crossing the finish line, like in any marathon, was pure joy!

Cold wet towels were handed out right after medals were hung around our necks and those were heavenly! It was so sunny and beautiful out (and VERY hot by now) and it was such a fun vibe at the finish area!

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There were mini computers to sign up for next year’s race, screens to check chip times, race apparel for sale, snacks, hydration, photo opp spots, plus the super easy gear check retrieval. The volunteers who got my flashlight and gear bag for me were kids and they were so sweet!

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of course I wish I could have also held up the BQ sign, but I will eventually!

The finish line is a bit further than where we parked at Tollgate Park. There was a shuttle back to the parking lot and it was easy, short and fun.

I loved this event and I honestly couldn’t even think of any feedback to send when they requested it by email. Bus driver school? The organizers are obviously doing a great job, this race runs on both Saturday AND Sunday because of the popularity!

Although I missed the BQ by two and a half minutes, I am not disappointed in any way. I couldn’t have asked for more on this day! The weather was great and the temperature manageable, I ran what I’d consider my second strongest marathon (after CIM), I had fun and didn’t hit the wall or go to the dark place! Also, I discovered some new things about myself as a marathoner! I can:

  • efficiently utilize aid stations instead of carrying an annoying handheld
  • handle unexpected things like a cray Garmin
  • effectively use a pace band
  • coach myself into pushing for the B goal when the A goal has slipped away

PUMP up the JAMmie is not over. This training cycle was fantastic! Coach Andrew has helped me take over AN HOUR off of my first marathon time from May 2016, which was 4:40:50! I’ve been asked if I’ll try again to BQ before the 2019 Boston registration opens in September, but the answer is no. It’s time for a break, and then to continue my journey with Lifelong Endurance! Boston 2020 will be mine!

Conveniently, my qualifying time for Boston 2020 changes to sub 3:40. I will be thirty-five come Patriot’s Day 2020! I’m still going to chase a sub-3:35 though. Keep ya posted!

PUMP up the JAMmie! – Week 9/16

Another huge week of running from Lifelong Endurance. Lots of naps. Ferocious hunger. No strength training at all, which I vow to get back on TOMORROW…but a good amount of cross training on top of 114 km! Tomorrow is my first non-running day since May 23rd and I’ll be taking full advantage of it so fatigue doesn’t interfere with any of the important workouts later in the week.

Monday, June 4theasy day

10k easy

Today reminded me of what I read in Meb for Mortals, where he describes pretty much all easy running as recovery running. I started very easy and was feeling tired and sore, but as the splits ticked by I felt better and better. It ended up basically being a progression run from 6:35/km down to 5:45.

That was it for the day.

Tuesday, June 5thhard day

First time there’s ever been a scheduled double on Training Peaks! Woo!!

First:

  • 3k easy
  • 6 x (3:00 ~ GMP, 3:00 easy)
  • 3k easy

Then, swimming lesson!!!! This was the third of four lessons, and today some shit really came together. I got in 1250m after my half an hour lesson and felt soooo good!

Later: run number two! 7k easy – changed up my local route a little, felt a little tired but still happy to be running. Good sign haha.

Wednesday, June 6theasy day

Happy Global Running day! I met up with Jess and Sam for 10k of trail and some road. Such a good morning with other runNerds!

Then I went to the pool. Warmed up with and without the pull buoy, then 3 x 500m, and a couple lengths cool-down for 2000m total. Officially re-fuckin-stoked for the triathlon!!!! Hey, you, reading this, if you live around here (northern BC) I want you to come! Read this 🙂

In the evening I went to the waterfront for a Global Running Day meetup and about fifteen of us ran just under 5k at a relaxed, conversational pace.

Thursday, June 7thmedium day?

13.5k controlled

I knew a medium-length run was going to pop up mid-week, sooner or later! Yessss!

When I woke up, I was so cranky for no reason. I didn’t understand the comment on the schedule, which said “use the swim to get your legs under you and relax.” My swims aren’t scheduled, and I was just so crabby and like wtf does that mean, maybe I don’t want to go swimming today. (LOL I’M SORRY ANDREW THIS IS NOT PERSONAL).

So, first, swimming pool. Warm-up, 2 x 750m, and cool-down for 1800m. Swimming totally snapped me out of my bitchy mood and I felt like a million bucks. My lungs felt massive ahahaha. This run ended up being fuckin AWESOME. I just kept thinking about the fluidity of swimming and it worked well for me.

Before bed: solid foam roller/stick roller session before I did an imagery exercise. What a good day.

Friday, June 8thhard day

  • 5k warm-up
  • 10k progression from ~ goal marathon pace down to ~ 4:40/km

This workout… it scares me. It beat me last time. Today, I almost nailed it. In the second progressive kilometer, someone pulled over to ask me a question LOL. That only took about two seconds, thankfully. He was looking for an escaped kayak that I ended up spotting in the ditch on my way back in! After the second to last kilometer, I was about to explode, so I stopped for a few seconds before forcing out the last one. But I did it! I count this as a very successful workout, though I do look forward to next time when I hope to get it 100% without stopping 🙂

Saturday, June 9thEASY day

7km with Jess on her 15k

Sunday, June 10thlong run day

Dun dun dun. The infamous 32k long run. That’s how I used to feel about these, but something has shifted and I’m not phased when seeing this distance on the schedule. However, I haven’t had a shitty run for sooooo long, and guess what? Today was the day 😂

I was so lethargic but decided to just be patient and consider the first 10k a very easy warm-up. But, after 10k I still felt like laying down on the road and sleeping ahaha. I was fueling well and keeping at it, but changed the screen on my Garmin to the clock screen because I was getting discouraged – the lap paces did not match the feeling of my effort at ALL. At 22k, I got a side stitch on both sides and slowly went from uncomfortable to legitimately in pain. Probably stopped ten times and sent out brain signals to husband…”please wonder what’s taking me so long and come and pick me up” LOL, didn’t work. At 27km, I sat down at a picnic table at the rest area and cried for approximately two seconds. SO frustrated!! Somehow, I made it home. Why did I just tell you my sob story? Because shitty runs happen and I am not ever going to pretend that they don’t. We see enough highlight-reel-only content on social media.

Guys, I am tired. Tomorrow I have a strength session with Kristen and I’m not doing anything else except foam roll, stretch and sleep between domestic duties.

SUMMARY

WEEKLY MILEAGE: 114

INJURIES/PRE-HAB? good to go

SLEEP? was awesome til the weekend…napped every weekday!

NUTRITION BRAGS? no bragging right now…not the best quality fuel this past week

CURRENTLY READING: The Champion’s Mind – Jim Afremow, PhD (audiobook)

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER(S) Thursday and Friday in particular were such high-quality runs in every way!!

NEXT RACE: Scotiabank Vancouver 1/2 AND 5k wooo! Two weeks away

PUMP up the JAMmie! – Week 8/16

WhoaaaaOOOOOH we’re half way therrrre!! LAWL. OMG. Seriously you guys my first seven marathons and all the work that went into them was all just foundation for THIS training cycle. This shit is bananas and I love it!! Lifelong Endurance is giving me what I’ve asked for.

Monday, May 28theasy day

Scheduled: 10k easy and controlled

I headed out along the Cannery Road and continued all the way to North Pacific Cannery instead of turning around at 5k for a total of 11.2km.

Tuesday, May 29thhard day

  • 5k warm-up
  • 8 x 3:00 ~ 5k pace, 2:00 moderate jog
  • 3k easy

The intervals were challenging today, so much traffic on the highway and it was raining but I took it from Beyond Grit to accept these distractions as extra challenges and got it done! I even felt so good after the 8th rep that I was able to run the last 3k at goal marathon pace, on average. YES.

Next up, swimming lesson 2/4. Awesome!!! After my 30 minute lesson I stayed at the pool for 1400m.

Then I found out a spot opened up in Kristen’s schedule, so I headed for a session with her at 7:30. As always, fan-fking-tastic. Anyone who has me walking on my hands on a treadmill is my kinda person. LOL.


Wednesday, May 30theasy day

When I saw 10k on today’s schedule I did a double take. Usually Wednesdays are my non-running recovery day, but I didn’t question it because my body is feeling good and strong and I’ve fit in some naps this week. Coach says we’re just testing it and to let him know if/when I need a rest.

Thursday, May 31sthard day AND LAST DAY OF FREAKING WORK

  • 5k warm-up
  • 6 x 1K @ 4:22-4:18, 2 min rest
  • 3k cool-down

HOLY!!!! This was awesome. I think it’s worth mentioning a couple of things I noticed.

  1. My self-talk has changed a lot, and for the better. When I first got on the machine I felt so tired and thought about waiting til after work for this shred fest. BUT, I had a dinner date with a colleague, so that was not an option. I literally said out loud to myself, “it’s only been a couple of minutes, give it a chance” and “don’t worry, it always takes a while to warm up this early in the morning” What do you know, by the time I’d run a mile there was a smile spreading across my face and I was rocking out to my Dad’s music! It pays to talk to ourselves as we would to a good friend.
  2. My ability to negotiate with myself has improved. During the fifth of six repeats, I got that sense of giving up, resting, and trying again. I said “no!” out loud more than once, and then I explained to myself that last week I ran this same workout but the intervals were 1600m, so 1000m was SO doable. Then I said the ABC’s in my head and thought of someone I know who started with every letter. Then #5 was done and there was only one more!

Friday, June 1steasy day

After some Skeena River Relay preparations with race co-director Crystal, I got in 10k nice and easy and then a hard nap.

Saturday, June 2ndhard day (race)

hmmm..haha. So today I ran the 21.2k stage of the Skeena Relay. This leg is very PR-supportive. I don’t know if it was realistic of me or not to gun for a sub 1:45, but that was the plan. Considering I’d run 100km in the seven days leading up to this, I think I should have been more careful. Dammit. Good old hindsight. Lifelong Endurance and I aren’t working around these races along the way during Pump Up the JAMmie. Tapering and full rest days around non-goal races just takes away from marathon training. So yeah, I understand why there was no scheduled taper.  And I guess the importance of a taper before a hard effort is now knowledge that lives in my muscles, not just a rumour 😉

I took the first kilometer, which is uphill, pretty steady, and then found a really good rhythm on the huge 4k downhill. I let my body relax into gravity and things felt good, but I think I ran faster than I should have.

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There are two hills before the course flattens around 10k all the way until the end. The hills felt fine, but I wish I slowed down as soon as the big downhill ended. Once I got over the second hill and onto the river, my pace started to really slip. Legs did not want to turn over and I fell into a ~5:15/km pace that I couldn’t seem to escape. It kinda felt like there was a spell on my body and it wouldn’t do what my brain was telling it to do ahahah

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A headwind wasn’t helping, but I just kept going and enjoying my run, which is something I didn’t know how to do about a year ago when things weren’t going as planned!

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Then I got the stomach ache. FUCKKKKK. I swear I am eating nothing but white rice for 48 hours before my next race. Two very fast, ninja-like pit stops happened between 12k and 15k. What a frustrating waste of precious time..ANYWAYS.

Thanks to my awesome team for the water support (and honking and cheering!!!!) which kept things extra fun, and I was able to pick it up a bit for a strong finish into the transition stage to high-five Marcie and send her on her way for stage 4.

The Skeena River Relay is the best day EVER and I loved every second of it this year, as usual. Here are the Gooeyducks, after Jana finished hard in the tenth and final stage.

Sunday, June 3rdeasy day?

Originally the schedule said 20k easy, so I got a ride out to where I started running yesterday and ran the opposite direction home. I knew from past training runs that it is almost exactly a half marathon. I actually had a solid run, starting easy to see how my body was feeling and then increasing to moderate for the majority of the run.

The run turned red on Training Peaks and then I saw that the schedule had been changed to only 8k!!! WHOOPS.

Yesterday, after my part of the race, I ate a protein bar immediately and drank a ton of water and Gatorade. We snacked all day, ate at the awards banquet, and later when I got home I chugged some green powder, a protein drink, took an ibuprofen and foam rolled my whole body. I will assume this was at least part of why I was able to churn out a sub 2 hour half marathon the day after a race. It felt good.

Week 8 is done and Jack & Jill is 56 days away.

SUMMARY

WEEKLY MILEAGE:  103 km

INJURIES/PRE-HAB?  just callous foot

SLEEP?  good but need more

NUTRITION BRAGS?  added a calcium supplement, increasing daily protein

CURRENTLY READING:  Beyond Grit (I’ll try to finish it soon)

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER(S)

  • huge mileage for me, no pains
  • second fastest half marathon ever, despite a less than ideal day and no taper

NEXT RACE:  Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon & 5k, June 24th

No clue if I’m racing the half or running some sort of training workout. We’ll see!