17 June 2012

Me as a Miler

Today I ran 8.5 miles! A few months ago it wouldn't have been a big deal, but that was before my IT band starting melting down. Now it seems like I'm getting back to normal, and to celebrate, I registered for the Disney Marathon in January.

I decided to run Disney a few weeks ago but couldn't bring myself to pull the trigger. Then Sean started getting on my case about it. I told him I was worried that my MS was getting worse and maybe I couldn't run another marathon. He put it like this: whether or not my MS gets worse, if I act like I'm going to run Disney, the months leading up to it will be better than if I act like I'm getting sicker and don't push myself to do anything. It's hard to argue with that.

Yesterday Maple and I ran a 1.8-mile fun run. It was a blast and it finished on the high school track, just like Western States.

This week I'm going to start doing speed workouts with my running club to get ready for the Mass Ave Mile race at the end of July. And I'm kinda sorta thinking about running a half marathon in a few weeks when Sean runs the Mad Marathon in Vermont. It's an extremely hilly race and I am not really in great shape to run a half, but I might run it anyway as a training run. Don't tell my PT.

12 June 2012

5k PR

About a year ago, I ran the Sharon Timlin 5k. I was inspired to register for it on a trip to visit my aunt Midge. Her husband, my Uncle Dennis, died of ALS in the fall of 2010, and when I visited Midge last April, I decided to run the Sharon Timlin race because it was a fundraiser for ALS. I ran 25:57. It was my first race since college. Sean was my pacer. I've never heard of a pacer for a 5k, but there you go. I'm lucky.

On Sunday, I ran the Sharon Timlin 5k again. When I toed the line this morning, I thought about the start of this race last year. I was so emotional that day; partly because of Dennis, and partly because I really wanted to run a marathon but didn't know if I ever would. I used to cry about that a lot.

I didn't cry Sunday morning, but I did run a 20-second PR. And my IT band didn't hurt! All the PT, foam rolling, strength exercises, rest / low mileage, and ART I've been doing must be working. And maybe Dennis was watching out for me.

After the 5k, for the first time in months, I wasn't registered for any races. That didn't really feel right, so I registered for the Mass Ave Mile yesterday. I'd love to run a mile in under 7 minutes. I am dying to get faster. I haven't done any speedwork since last year, but I've put in a ton of miles. Although I'm happy I ran a PR, I want to do better.

At last year's Sharon Timlin race, Maple ran a 200m track race. This year they didn't have races for the little kids, but they did have a mile race for kids 7 and up. Maple doesn't turn 7 until August, so I didn't register her for the race. But when we got to the race, she started running laps around the track, just for fun. I asked her if she'd want to run the mile, if I could get her registered. To my surprise, she said yes.

I hope I'm not being one of those blind parents who push their kids to do tons of crap and then act shocked when anyone suggests that the kid is just doing it to keep the parents happy. But whatever. She was amazing, and finished the mile in 9:19 (this was her first chip-timed race).Usually when we run around the block, she wants to stop four times to walk, so I was shocked to see her coming up to the finish in nine minutes! We were so proud, and so was she.

Later on Sunday, we went to REI and she climbed to the top of the climbing wall (for the first time). It was another surprising moment. She had to work through fear and exhaustion to get to the top, but she did it. I should never underestimate her. She can do so much more than I think she can.

And I should think the same way about me! I want to break 24 minutes for a 5k this year. Maybe that's impossible, but I used to think running a marathon was a stretch. Someday I want to run sub-22 for the 5k. That's probably insane - I have absolutely no raw talent for running and I don't think I have any fast-twitch muscles at all - but I think I'll have fun trying.

Sean is running a lot lately as well. He's training for the Vermont 50 this fall, and he's also doing the Mad Marathon in Vermont as a training run. We might do the Disney Marathon together in January, but we haven't committed yet.

This week is about increasing mileage for me. I'll start speed and hill work next week. I'm going to try to get faster this summer, and then whip myself back into marathon shape for either a fall marathon or Disney. Maybe both.