Track a Week Late

Its been a little while since I’ve given an update, sorry about that. What has been going on since Christmas has been a bit of an adjustment period I go through every year for some strange reason. I haven’t figured it out yet, but its always here. In one of my first posts I talked about a particular workout at the beginning on my indoor season my last year at Maine that was really tough but ended up giving me an important focus queue for my season. That workout happened because I knew it was going to take a few workouts to get into the rhythm of the season and I didn’t want to miss a beat in racing, which ended up working out.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         This year the adjustment period has taken a little longer. This has been a little annoying and lead to some pretty sever frustrations in January- walking back through the snowy part on our tempo loop after 25 minutes of the 60 minute workout a few weeks ago being a good example- but I think I’ve managed to get over them. There were a few more factors to adjust to this winter I guess and I wasn’t necessarily in the best place mentally when the winter season started either. Lingering annoyance with the less than ideal half marathon I had decided to focus my fall on in October and a few ups and downs with the training schedule were still eating away at my focus more than I would have liked them to be.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              At the beginning of the week last (maybe last last week, depending on how you’re thinking about weeks) I decided not to go to the Valentines Invitational with Ryan and John. Though it is my favorite race of my favorite season I decided not to go as I didn’t feel ready and that I would wait one more week to race.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I really don’t think anyone can say whether this was a good decision or a pansy decision that ended up with satisfying results- so far- and I’m not going to spend too much time trying to figure it out. I decided that since things were finally starting to go well  but I was still feeling a little uncertain I’d give myself a little more time to let the training come together. The extra week gave me an extra week on the track, check, I love the track! Also it ended up giving me a second good Monday run in a row, which hasn’t happened since November, check. Two good things that helped lead to a fairly good race in fairly good headspace.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Anyway, enough on the thoughts on my thoughts about thinking about things before the race. So here’s a little overview of how things went yesterday. My pre race morning routine is pretty standard by now. I got up, had a gluten free bagel with peanut butter. Its not a necessity but I do like to have something with some protein, and I don’ t like oatmeal before racing so its either the glutino bagel, or eggs. I eat some other stuff, make sure I feel full and generally not dairy. I actually did go out on a limp yesterday morning and ate a greek yogurt cup. I’ve decided a bit of yogurt is safe for a late afternoon/evening race. So my 4:15 race time was pretty save, and ended up being super safe as it was actually 6:45 but lets not get into that. Then I like to slowly think up all the things I could possibly need for the race – think ending up with extra rain and having to lend 2 people socks, I’m a bit of a maniac on this one.  I have standard racing socks, shorts and sports bar that go along with my singlet and all the other clothes I bring are just a mix of my favorite running gear depending on venue/season.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                So I like to get to meets  a bit early and let myself adjust to being at a track to race. Gets some of the crazy thoughts out of my head and lets me settle into my race plan, the setting etc.. Sometimes I get really bored, sometimes the time passes waaay too fast. Yesterday I decided to try and get to the 600s at 12:50 to watch 2 teammates and then hang out for a bit, so I’d have about 3 hours after the 600s until my race. First bad thing, I missed the first 600, second bad thing, shortly after the meet gained 1.5 hours. So I had a bit more time, which probably didn’t end up being too bad in the end, but was kind of annoying for trying to plan when to eat and when to warm up. I managed to keep to lots of sitting, minimal pacing. I like to eat something that makes me feel like I’ve recently gotten some useful nutrition and ensures that I don’t have a really hungry feeling while I’m contemplating racing lacing up my flats. It’s a bad thought progression if you’re hungry a few minutes before the race, at least in my head. Some people don’t like to be able to feel anything in their stomach any time near a race. For me getting that last little bit of fuel is a nothing thing to check off that ‘things I’ve taken care of’ list along with knowing your pace through workouts, getting your recovery days in and getting the right nutrition after. Slight aside, but my mum ran her only marathon when I was 3. I’ve seen my whole life that’s she’s pretty faithful to getting runs in but I still imagine that there was some tweaking and modifying the workouts and the plan to fit with having your first kid being 3 and annoying while training for a marathon. She has told me that one of the things that she did every day that was on her list was she put lotion on every day through the training and had a little ‘chat’ with her legs, I’m going to be nice to your and give you a little message every day so you’re going to be nice and get me through this marathon. Something like that. So I figure, if she can add that to the list, I can put cool stuff on mine too.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       I’d made sure to bring some extra snacks and as I knew by mid-afternoon that the race times were kind of variable I’d saved a granola bar like snack as I was getting ready for the race. So after eating the 2 hours before protein bar at 4, I had the granola bar at 5:30 as I’d started to get hungry and we were thinking I might not race until 7. For me light carbs is the best thing to eat close before, but nothing with a sticky fruity feel. I picked the granola bar instead of the real fruit chew.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As usual I don’t remember many details from the actual race other than 3 laps in I decided it was really hot and was wondering if anyone else thought so. I was happy with the result as my goal was to go under 10:40 (10:35 unofficial I think) this week as that was step one to racing quick. My feet were pretty sore but I didn’t let myself go over the freak out edge which was good. Still surprises me that my can be having major hamstring spasms in the opposite leg of the most painful foot about 3 hours after racing. I don’t like it, but I did have pizza so not too many complaints. Gluten free favorite of mine # 2 for the blog, Pizza Pizza has gluten free crust!  And its pretty good! Also, of note the Ultimate Chocolate milk that I’ve been eyeing in the vending machines at McGill are quite good, not sure what makes chocolate milk ‘ultimate’ but it definitely did the trick after the race. My feet weren’t bad enough that I couldn’t run this morning so another plus for the day. My stride was only off in my strides at the end I think 🙂                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Next race for me is provincials. Goal for that one is 10:25. Will have to move down 1 second per lap. Other goals for the period are try and do some abs a few days a week and make sure to get stretching in. I’ve been letting both of them go a little bit lately, the stretching is kind of a must and I think I’m ready to add abs in. Also, putting it out there, some other of our huge wonderful group of girls should blog. Please! I want to read about you!!!!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Also, while checking through this Caper just chewed up my student card that’s been in my racing flat for the last month. I finally took it out of my spike bag this morning… gross.                                                                                                                                                                                                          Bye! Bren