- Speed: Blah. GI issues and a tweaky ankle tendon meant I only did 3.5 of my 4 mile repeats. My rest day comes right after speedwork, and my ankle was great by my next run, and hasn't been a problem since. I think my shoes were at the end of their life, so I retired them. I also had some piriformis/sciatic pain after this run but I spent some time sitting on a lacrosse ball and that did the trick.
- Tempo: This run was great. It was hard but I felt strong and confident. I beat my goal pace slightly, keeping to a solid 8:45 average over the 3 tempo miles, and I felt so great afterwards. I was scared going into this run (as I always am before tempo runs), so I spent some time the night before visualizing how the run would go (successfully). I imagined my route: where I would pick up the pace after the first mile, how I would feel going up a certain hill; basically everything I would see and how I would feel. It made a difference! I will definitely do the visualization next week because I have to run 3 miles at half marathon goal pace (8:24!).
- Long: Awesome 9 miles through my cute little town (and the next one over). I tried out a new fuel - baby food! This worked so well. I got the idea from Middle Aged Runner, who used it in a race recently. It sits really well in my stomach and is surprisingly great tasting. It really puts gels to shame. There is enough water in it so that you don't have to take it with extra water, and it's easy to eat in little bits and save for later. The only thing that isn't ideal is that there's no sodium in baby food, and I think sodium means electrolytes, which are good, right? The brand I got is called Happy Baby, and I chose the banana because it had the most carbs (22g). Here's a picture of me after my run. Happiest baby ever. Do you like the giant pine cone growing out of my head?
YogaI've never been a yoga person. My mom has done yoga since before I was born, and my husband loves yoga. I've tried quite a few times but have never gotten into it. The last time I tried hot yoga, I spent most of the class in the bathroom, emptying the contents of my stomach (mouth, not butt) and hoping the rest of the class couldnt hear me. Recently a friend of mine became certified in Kripalu yoga and started teaching nearby. I have been to two classes now and I love it. I even bought myself a yoga mat and bag yesterday!
The class is on Friday nights after work, which is the perfect way to transition into the weekend. It is gentle and includes some flows, but not fast ones. There is focus on the breath and the poses, but Jen makes it clear that it's okay to engage with the poses in your own individual way. There are lots of stretches and holding poses, which is tough but feels good. I don't think I broke a sweat in class on Friday - and that's just right. For me, running is my workout, and yoga is yoga. I'm so glad I finally found the perfect class for me, and I'm grateful to Jen for being such a great teacher! And all these hot yoga classes can go burn in hot yoga hell.
Okay maybe I still need to work on my karma. One thing at a time!
NutritionI'm reading a new book about marathon nutrition and I'm really enjoying it. Not roller coaster enjoying it, but I think it's a good read. Lots of new information I haven't heard before. Like drinking beet juice before a run, which I did this morning and it gave me tons of energy. I love how much specific info there is about what to eat and drink in training, tapering, pre and post race, as well as during the race itself. It's a gold mine. I just wish I had bought a paper copy, because I just am not in love with reading electronically. I am way too old school for this.
My gut has been kind of unhappy lately, so I'm tracking my food in the same spreadsheet where I track my running. Often when I track food, which I've done quite a few times, I try to track calories and all the rest if the numbers. This makes me crazy, because I'm such a crazy perfectionist as soon as there are numbers involved. This time I'm just tracking what I ate, not how much. The idea is to eat more vegetables and fruit and less processed food. It's going well, and I think my gut is responding. I'm pretty much always bloated and farting up a storm, and it really bugs me, so I hope to find out what is causing it. One thing I've noticed since I started eating better is that I'm not hungry. Whole foods are more dense, so I guess this makes sense, but at first it seemed really weird not to be eating so much. But even with the change in my appetite, my weight is steady, which is fine by me. It wouldn't hurt me to lose a few pounds, but it's not high on my list.
GearI mentioned before that I got two new pairs of shoes this week. The Brooks Ravenna 4s:
And the Mizuno Inspire 8s:
I trained for my first marathon in the Ravennas (2 and 3) and liked them, but went back to Asics for my second marathon. The new Ravennas feel great. I've gone up a half size because I have long toes and I always get black toenails. As a result, these feel a bit roomy (which means not quite as glove-like) but hopefully they will be nicer to my toes. They have a sweet mix of stability and flexibility. I love how they move with my feet.
The Inspires (and Mizuno) are new to me. They feel very different from the Brooks, but I like them. On an easy 4-mile test run, they gave me a bit of a rub on the bottom of my right foot, but I think they might just need some breaking in. I like the medial post in these - they feel like they halt my pronating right foot a bit more than other shoes.
For my last marathon, I trained in the Asics GT 2170, which are discontinued:
The replacement is the GT 2000:
Which I didn't like as much when I tried them on. They felt less supportive and mushier, so I passed on them for now. I'll be surprised if Asics doesn't bring back a shoe that's more like the 2170s. They had quite a following.
I also went on a bit of a shopping spree for running clothes this week. I've been lusting after Oiselle duds since I started following Paulette's blog a few months back. Then Lauren Fleshman started running for Oiselle, which put them in the cool stratosphere in my book. Around the same time, I started feeling oogley about my go-to supplier of running gear thanks to some scandalous things I read. So this week I finally took the Oiselle plunge. I ordered the new Game Day shorts:
The Lesley Knickers:
A Lux Layer (people are freaking out about how soft this is):
and their Running Pants:
I'm so excited to try all this stuff out! It hasn't arrived yet, but 'll let you know how it is.