Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tupelo Countdown - 3 weeks to go!

I have no excuse for my absence other than apathy. I just haven't felt like writing much. I finished my summer semester of school on August 1, and I was so tired of writing that I just needed a break. I had to turn in a 25 page paper and complete a final exam that night so you can see why. I am happy to be have one more semester under my belt, but I am sad to report that my 4.0 streak has come to an end. Yes, I got an A- this summer (who gives A-'s anymore???), and I now have a 3.95. Oddly enough, I was a little upset! But I have come to terms with it and am ok now. I am enjoying a break from classes, however, I will kick back up next Wednesday.

And yes, I have been running these last two weeks. When I left off on July 30, I had just finished up two weeks of mileage building. Obviously I was looking forward to a week of easy running for some recovery. Recovery week came at a good time because my Garmin finally gave it up. On its last run with me, my 16 miler on the 30th, it was giving me all kinds of crazy feedback. So, I finally ordered a new one. My week of recovery was quiet, no Garmin, tired legs and tired body. The last two runs of the week, Saturday's 12 and Sunday's 8, were extremely tough. My new Garmin had come in, and I was testing out the heart rate monitor that I had decided to get. Not knowing anything about BPM and what was normal for me, I wasn't sure what was what the first time I wore it. During those two runs my average heart rate was about 170, and I figured that was high because i felt horrible. My heart was racing, felt lightheaded when I stopped, and had no energy. Coach even commented that he was surprised at my BPM. I tried to shake it off and was ready to head into the next week.

I was prepared for the next mileage build, but I admit I was nervous because of how tired I was during recovery. The week called for 46 miles. Tuesday was 10 again, with a few hills, at marathon pace + 30 seconds. It was a fantastic run. I usually give James numbers on how the run went, on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest. I called that run an 8. I nailed the pace for all 10 miles and actually came in a few seconds under, averaging a 9:26. And my heart rate was much more normal at 158 BPM for the run. Thursday was 12. Another solid run, perhaps even better than Tuesday. My paces were faster, especially in the last half of the run at 9:24, 9:20, 9:15, 9:23, 9:07 and 9:04! I started a bit slower so my average for the 12 was 9;28, but my heart rate averaged out at 158. I was really pleased after this run, and I was only 16 miles away from closing out a solid 46 mile week.

Saturday morning, I was literally running on fumes. After a late Friday night helping out a friend, I met the crew to run the 16 on just 4 hours of sleep. James had told me running on limited sleep would be ok as we often run marathons on little sleep with nerves on top of it. He was so right. This was the best long run I've had all summer. After the first mile, I was on pace right away. For the first 6 miles, I hovered around 9:50 to 9:55, then for the remainder of the run 9:30's and low 9:40's. I started tiring out in the last 4 miles, but there was no way I was going to let up. The last two miles, in typical fashion, were faster at 9:22 and 9:15. The average for this run was 9:44 with an average heart rate of 152. I was pretty excited I held on and came in under pace on this run after the two previous runs were such hard efforts. It was a solid, solid run, and I was happy.

I had pretty much polished off 46 miles in perfect form. Every run was on point. 9:30 and 9:44 might not seem fast to most, but try doing it in extremely high humidity with temps in the upper 70's, low 80's, with the index hovering in the upper 80's. Last week was better temp-wise, and we were blessed with a breeze most every morning, but let's face it, it's still hot. Despite it all, I'm running better than I ever have throughout the summer, and I'm pretty darn proud of that. It's a major milestone for me. I'm also running my best at the hottest part of the summer, and I consider that success. And as coach says, success breeds success.

1 comment:

  1. just imagine what the cooler temps will bring! u will be on fire! proud of u! keep that positive attitude! <3