09 February 2013

my old stomping (running) grounds

I started running at the ncr trail when I first, well, started running back in 2005 (when J, Laura and I were living in Bolton Hill and I was just starting law school and needed validation that I was a successful person and law school was just not doing that for me)

(was 2005 really EIGHT years ago? yeeeesh)

I met up with an awesome group of folks - the ncr trail snails (motto: we're behind you all the way!) and ran with them while training for my first marathon - baltimore - in 2005. I learned all sorts of awesome marathoning advice - pace, what to eat, drink, wear, putting your name on your shirt so random strangers can cheer you on, etc.

I don't run at the trail very often now - it's not that close to our house and I try to minimize time away from family. But! I think it's one of of The Best Places to Do Long Runs in the area, and it's worth the drive ... especially with two of your running-coworkers-who-run-your-pace-and-are-up-for-breakfast-afterward.

It wasn't that cold out, especially considering the weather we've had lately, but I woke up to howling winds and I knew those would be chilly. Checked weather.com on my phone (one of my most used apps!) and I saw that it was 26*F.. wind chill: 13*F. Awesome. Bundled up (and knew that I would get too warm at some point during the run, but who wants to start running while freezing? and anyhow that's what layers are for).

Kim, Colleen and I met at the office at 7:30 to drive over together (thanks for driving, Kim! although I'm still a little bitter that you and Colleen hogged the seat warmer seats ;)).

the trail was pretty empty (no surprise there!) with the exception of runners and some very cute dogs. the best dogs were two little dachshunds wearing sweaters and looking exhausted. super serious adorableness. we saw some icicles in the rocks .. very pretty.

we did 12.01 miles in 1:54:34 // 9:32 pace.

then for bagels at the bagel shop and then to starbucks

omg I love egg bagels and I love green tea and not pictured is the chocolate chip banana bread

then back to ellicott city and back to elkridge.

I was happy that toddler H was still awake. We skipped around the living room for a bit [well, I skipped, he galloped and barked at me SKIP SKIP SKIP. it was a little weird] and read a couple of books [you know how you get earworms? I get children'sbookworms in my ears. I hear myself reading Hippos Go Berzerk and Hop on Pop long after I've actually finished reading].

then, the dreaded-but-it-seems-to-help-with-recovery ice bath:

winter ice baths are actually colder - thanks to super cold tap water (in the summer it's hard to get anything colder than luke warm water out of the tub faucet).

tolerated that insanity for 15 minutes, hopped out, waited another 30, then took a hot shower and then the feeling in my feet returned

which was AMAZING.

03 February 2013

pr. hooray!

this morning, James asked me what I hoped to go at the Penguin Pace 5K. Honestly, I hadn't thought about it too much. I wanted to beat last year's time - 24:59 - but I wasn't sure how fast I could go. I didn't taper, although I did break a 35 day streak to take a rest day yesterday, and I did an easy three on Friday, so I was as well rested as I was going to be for a "not A" race.

my car died yesterday and James was working this morning (big thanks to Jim/ Pop Pop! for hanging out with H this morning!), so I scrambled to find a ride. luckily, my friend/ coworker (future in-law?) Colleen agreed to swing by and pick me up (thanks Colleen!). I thought about trying to get in a 2-3 mile warm up, but it was so damn cold and bitter (20*F) that I didn't bother.

met up with a few friends pre race, peed, and then headed outside to start the race. it snowed last night, but it was just a dusting. the roads were pretty clear... a few icy spots here and there, but nothing too bad - and some awesome volunteers to point out the slippery spots. I didn't really hear the RD start the race... just a GO! and then everyone started running !

the first part of the run is - yay! - downhill - and I took full advantage of that. the elevation  map doesn't look that bad, but that last big hill - between about mile 2 and 2.5 - is a toughie. It hit hard and I lost a lot of speed and fowardmovingness. yes that is a word. to me.


so not exactly a negative split ;) but I hung on pretty well considering the course. post race, had water, fruit, and a croissant (okay post race food, but not awesome) and met up with my friends. then to brunch with my IronBuddy Deb. Mmmm potato latkes, eggs, and fruit.

according to the good folks at Howard County Striders, my official time is 22:59.25 - that's a 7:24 pace. I broke 23 minutes! And! And! I shaved two minutes off of last year's time of 24:59 (8:08 pace) ... huge time drop for a 5K! 

AND I PR'd! not just a post-baby PR but a real, honest-to-goodness PR. I beat my previous PR of 23:07, set in 2007 (while I was still in law school, living at Sutton Place Apartments, married 2 years, 3 years pre H) on Superbowl Sunday of that year. Wow.

I thought I might get an award, but alas, I wasn't fast enough the stars did not align. I was fifth in my age group - women 30-39 - but the top two women in my AG were also the top two women overall (both running a low 20 - eeeps!), so I thought they'd be out of contention for AG awards and I'd bump up to third. Unfortunately, the race only did awards for the top male and female, so I was officially fourth in my AG for awards. (if I was still in the 20-29AG? would have placed FIRST). oh well.

AG (F30-39): 5/74
overall: 28/ 368

not too shabby!

(H is not impressed with my PR but did stretch with me)

McMillan gives some pretty sweet predictions based on this time. I've been around the block enough times (YAY RUNNING PUN HA I AM HILARIOUS) to know that I can't base a marathon prediction on a 5K time, but it gives me hope to break 4 (McMillan puts me at a 1:46 HM and a 3:34 (HA) mary.

I am feeling GOOD and proud and ready to tackle the next 6 weeks of training before the B&A half!