Sunday, August 30, 2009

She's So Heavy...or at least her legs are.

Today was the weekly long run. There was no excursion planned to a real-life chocolate factory or extreme dining out afterwards. Instead, I was content in just having someone running along side me (even if it really was behind me). For the 6 years of my running career, I rarely have an individual who is willing to do the distance and speed with me. Oh who cares about the yummies that could be waiting for me at home! What matters is the familiar sound of the pavement being hit behind me, around me, and realizing that the one I love is supporting me all the way...and I him.

Mileage: 13.1 miles from Jersey to New York...how many people can say they run in two states?

And all I can smile at was the prospect that last year I was running in 5 towns. Now...here I see myself crossing the New York/New Jersey line for free after passing those same 5 towns.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Wiped Out

Here... before I digress on the 'loveliness' of today's workout, let's recap the week:

Monday
+ 30 minute pool session

Tuesday
+ kinda an emotional day...working out took a back seat

Wednesday
+ 7 mile run
+ 30 minute pool session

Thursday
+ 6 mile run
+ 30 minutes weightlifting
+ 20 minutes on the elliptical
+ 10 minutes walking

Today
+ 30 minutes pool
+ 4 mile run

This is in addition to the 11 mile run done on Sunday.

So other than sabotaging my diet this week with cereals dripping with honey and bread, bread, and more bread...and don't forget the 5 slices of pizza I ingested along with the soda ICEE I downed on my 'emotional' day...I also managed to decrease my mileage. That's fine. It's all part of the training. 26 miles only this week is needed. So my focus has been in my swimming. You can spot me out in the pool. I'm the one choking on my spit. But day by day, I see my improvement. Today though felt like that best. I was able to enhance my speed while not sacrificing my technique. And although my technique can use some improvement, it is much better than my 1 lap, breeeeeeeeeeeeeeak, 1 lap, breaaaaaaaaaaak. Now I swish in the water...1...2...3...breathe...1...2...3...breathe. Now do it faster! And faster! And whoa, are those endorphins??! I thought I only got that in running.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

VC + Friends + Max Brenner's chocolate = best Sunday EVER

What can power Walter to run a 8 1/2 min/mile pace 4 times around Van Cortlandt's famous hilly terrain? It's the magic word: chocolate! I tried to follow suit, but my 9 mile trip yesterday left me a bit winded. I climbed the rollercoaster of hills three times, followed by some trips up and down the famous Graveyard Hill. By the time I was in my last mile, I realized why it was called Graveyard. I probably could have run longer but my calves yelped in pain. I quickly backed off and stood at the sidelines.

It was movitating. Every two or three miles, out popped a friend - Walter, Courtney, or Jason. All like habitants of this wonderous place. We would talk, run together, or simply just encourage. On a Sunday, it's the perfect way to build some mileage.

But then came the reward. On weekdays and weekends...in other words, always...Walter and I would pass by a place that was intoxicating with odor of Aztec's findings. However, its appearance was always masked by a crowd waiting a hour or more to sit. But today, it was ours for the taking! At Max Brenner's, we indulged on some brunch - a big pat on the back transferred to our screaming stomachs instead. And that's when Walter introduced me to the most divine concoction dreamed and made real. M-o-c-h-a F-r-a-p-e. Sure, stick to your Starbucks lame attempt of gastrological beauty. This was the stuff they partied and dipped themselves with on Mount Olympus. Perfect for refueling atheletes. Ok, so it's 700 calories each....egg whites for dinner then :\

Mileage: guesstimate at about 10 miles (three repeats of 5k course + 1 mile warm up)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Blessings from Heaven

Runners sometimes stop and wonder. Even if it's for a split second of your PR. "Maybe I'm doing more harm to my body than good..." You've heard it. "Your knees...your hips...concrete is bad for you." And, trust me, being a physical therapist doesn't help to tame that notion.

So you run...and you keep doing it. You try to be "good" by alternating surfaces - cement, grass, gravel, track rubber, etc. You go further by alternating distances - five mile tempo, twelve mile recovery, etc, and etc yet again. But, still, through all that, you still wonder should be being something else for your body. Sure, you don't smoke and probably drink once a while (::hands up:: five glasses of sangria for me last night...but it's been an uber long time) but will you be meeting up with an Ortho in the next fifteen years to discuss arthroplasty?

It was about the sixth mile. I made the turn around the track and there was my answer. A sky whited out as if the heavens went missing from the eyes of mortals. From the emptiness cried forth a torment...the third I've been stuck in the last month of running. But this was like none other. As I ran faster now...quarter...half...and then a mile...the rain only comforted me. No blinding by the wind, no bogginess in my clothing; it was as if God Himself came as a cloak - riding me and encouraging me on. Three miles later, I felt whole and alive once again.

So, twenty years from now when I meet my Ortho for that double knee replacement I'll tell him how difficult it is to disappoint the Big Guy Upstairs - my biggest fan.

Mileage: 9 miles...hoo-ray!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Treadmill Suckage

There's something hindering and jailing about a treadmill. Maybe it's because all you can do to alter the movement is your stride length. Maybe it's because you pour buckets of sweat in just 2 miles being in stationary position. Or maybe it just is unrealistic - where are the hills, the dogs you gotta jump over, and the friends you wave to along the way? Ok, so it can be altered by adding inclines, trying to jump over your Ipod when it falls onto the treadmill, and talking to your gym friends (which I don't have apparently)...yes, it can all be done with vitamin D deficiency.

Bing bang boom I got my mileage done early and complete:

Mileage: 5.10 miles on treadmill with about 7 mph pace.
Additionals: 20 minutes weight training, 20 minutes elliptical

But onto something positive! As I swished right leg and then left, my ponytail going crazy side to side, I took a glimpse at the black tight - wearing ninja to my left. I look down to her stomach. FLAT! Finally, I'm getting back to where I need to be...and feel ooooh so good about it

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tri-ing to Be Left Alone

Union City hasn't woken up yet; and those members of its city that has are off to work. I line my body up in black and red speedo, swivel my goggles behind my head, and snap a small pack around my waist. Despite the stiffness in my neck and grogginess in my eyes, I know coffee will be on its way... I just need to finish my workout first.

So my feet hit the pavement. Even in my half - alert phase, I realize what is going on around me. Cat - calling. Whistling. Half - thought - out comments. By the time I finish my first mile, I'm irate. "The next bastard that says anything will get a plate full of it!" And so it happened. I get a "Que bonita" and the guy gets back a "Fuck off, jerk off." I think he stopped in disbelief - that or he had no clue what I said. Either way, I finished off my mileage towards the pool to begin my swim. Alone at last. Just me and the water.

So what is it? What causes men to say comments as that? Do they seriously think I'm going to stop and smile or what? When I was in high school, my gym teacher would take the girls outside for running practice. She would tell us, "If I man makes a comment, just smile. Don't get mad! Take it as a compliment." Well, what she didn't know was I was going to turn into a very serious athelete that abhors my activities not taken seriously. Do you think I want to be running in my bathing suit and shorts outside? NO. But I have to. It's my sport so f-ing take it seriously.

As for my workout, I am still plagued with this neck pain. It's in the traps! I feel it...its trapped underneath the muscle like a mouse tucked into a roll of blankets. Stretching helps...and playing Fable II for three hours straight doesn't. Running is so - so. It's tolerable. Two more days; if not, I'm getting another PT's opinion.

Mileage: 6 miles
Additions: 30 minutes freestyle. Yay! I did 10 successful laps where I didn't choke!