When I’m not writing mildly depressing posts about being divorced, I’m actually having a pretty amazing time in life lately!!! Feelings ebb and flow. I’m not too shy to admit the tougher moments, but it’s also important to know that I have been making some fun memories too.
I can’t believe that it has already been five weeks since I ran the 2017 Boston marathon!! Since then I have focused on physically and emotionally recovering from training, incorporating a new strength training regime into the mix and slowly increasing my mileage back to a base of 40 miles with some, but not much speedwork built in. After such an intense training cycle for Boston (peaked around 65 miles/wk with TOUGH speedwork sessions) I typically enjoy a few weeks after a marathon to just RUN! I run however far and fast (or slow) I want and it feels good to not be tied down to a rigid plan. I relish in the few weeks off of training post marathon to be flexible and flip my run days depending on weather or parenthood schedules etc. This allows for my body to just guide the process of recovery. My post Boston weekly mileage has looked like this:
Week after Boston: 3 miles SLOW, lots of walking around Acadia National park
2 weeks post B: 29 miles (5 run days, 2 strength), NO SPEEDY RUNS
3 weeks post B: 38 miles (6 run days, 2 strength), on day 7 jumped in on Providence half and a smidge ran too fast! (see below)
4 weeks post B: 38 miles (5 run days, 2 strength), one 2×10 min tempo AND long run with 3 tempo miles
5 weeks post B: 45 miles (6 run days, 2 strength), one 2×10 min tempo AND Strawberry Shortcake 10k Race
6 weeks post B/ week of 5.22 to 5.29- recovery week with lower mileage around 30-35 miles, no speedwork
I’ll be honest- I’ve had A TON of fun over the past 6 weeks :). Immediately after the Boston Marathon Chris and I drove up to Acadia National park for the rest of the week (pics above). One week. In the woods. With my guy. Perfection. Oooook, it was about 40 degrees and rainy most of the time we were there… but it added to the charm. Sort of, but not really. WHO GOES TO MAINE IN APRIL? These marathon boneheads! Oh well. haha.
We made it work. We played pool, ate his and hers mac and cheese, LOTS OF GLORIOUS CINNAMON BUNS and went hiking in ALL THE SHOES! 🙂 I’m starting to realize that it really doesn’t matter what we do, as long as we’re together. <3
Since that vacation I’ve been back to the grind at work. But there was that day that I found some cupcakes pretended to be Pusheen the cat (and proceeded to send these weird pics to the BF, naturally)… anyone? ANYONE?
A few weeks later Chris was running the Providence Marathon (yes, he did Boston in 3:06 AND Providence in 2:53, cause he’s crazy) so I decided to hop in on the Providence Half Marathon with Kristi, one of my athletes who lives in the area. We ran 8-9 miles completely conversational at an 8-8:30 pace and then started pushing the pace. We didn’t intend to go crazy, buuuuuuut we did. We crossed the finish line with a 1:45 (8 min splits) and a final mile pace of 7:20- whoopsies!! Ha!
Well, apparently my foot didn’t like adding that pressure so fast after Boston because it chirped back at me. Later that week my heel stared to feel very sore. Nothing greater than a pain of 3/10, but a dull soreness. I mention this so that others know that I don’t run “pain free.” Ha. I am pain tolerant. I’m not running through intense, tough pain, but my body told me loud and clear that it needed some attention- and that’s exactly what I’ve been doing. I’ve been focused on stretching out the calf, foot and hamstring muscles and even massaging my feet regularly.
I spent mother’s day weekend with Lillian and the BF down in CT. It was low-key, just the way I like it. I spent about an hour of Friday night watching Chris mow the lawn with Lillian on his lap. I watched them go back and forth with Lilly driving, then playing “no hands” and laughing and smiling the whole way. A simple task yet such a powerful moment for me. Simply put- I’m so thankful to have found a man who treats my daughter with such sublime adoration.
And then there was this weekend…. Chris and I ran the Strawberry Shortcake 10k in Plympton, MA. Last year we *surprisingly* won for the men and women. This year there were some very strong runners in this tiny, low-key race and we managed 3rd place womens (with a 43:15, 6:56 pace and 1:45 better than last year!! I am SO HAPPY!!!) and 2nd place men’s (with a 36:55, 5:56 pace, 6 seconds faster than 2016:)). We didn’t win, BUT we gave it all we had and ate plate after plate of victory Strawberry Shortcake at the finish.
It’s been a while since I’ve gone all in on a short race and risked blowing up but this time I felt like I had nothing to lose. I went for it and it payed off bigtime! My splits were as follows: 6:50, 7:02, 6:44, 7:02, 7:11, 6:50. My goal was to break 7 min splits. My engine was built for longer distances; 10ksand 5ks are where I truly struggle. Think about it: I can nearly run a 7:05 min/mi half marathon but can barely break 7 min splits for half of the distance! I call this race and effort a win! 🙂
In general things in my life have been pretty awesome. Run a few races (yay). Nab a 3rd place women’s medal (horray). Even take 1:45 off of my 10k time (yah000!!!). THEN today happened.
This section deserves a post of it’s own. However, I know my track record lately with writing, so I want to say something here and now. Last summer a blog reader, Sarah M from Rhode Island, emailed me out of the blue. She was interested in my coaching services buuuut was a wee bit apprehensive. She didn’t want to commit to training for a marathon before we had the opportunity to get to know each other and our styles/personalities.
After some discussion we settled on having her train for a 10k in Newport last December- she crushed it. In fact she crushed every single workout I put in front of her. She’s a whippersnapper she is. I’ll be honest, she made me work for my money questioning me every step of the way and I loved it! I told her to run a workout at a specific pace and she asked – WHY. She would do it, of course, but she needed to know. She was readily invested in the process and so was it. Now mind you, I had never met Sarah M before. I worked with her for 6 entire months, emailed her every single day and never met her. Training together she has PR’ed in the 5k, 10k, half-marathon and today- the marathon!!!!
I AM SO DARN PROUD OF THIS LADY! She is a hard working loving mama of 2 crazy kiddos and puts her heart and soul into running. Today she ran the Martha’s Vineyard Marathon. Today I met her at mile 21! When she made it to me she told me her stomach was off, that something went wrong back in mile 10 and she wanted to stop. HELL NO. Together we dug deep and ran it in where SARAH MOTHER F*ING M FOUGHT MILE AFTER MILE FOR A 13 MINUTE MARATHON PR and a final time of 4:45:41. She physically felt like crud for 16 miles. She even did a walk/run here and there. She is capable of much much faster, and yet today this woman proved just how important mental fitness is during a race. She simply wouldn’t give up!! So amazed. I was absolutely honored to run her in to mile 26 and watch her fly her way to the finish.
Honored to run with you today, Sarah.
Proud to call you my athlete.
CAN’T WAIT TO BRING IT ALL TO CHITOWN THIS FALL!!!
So yea, life feels pretty darn good 🙂 Want to hear the good news? Only 4 more days of work between me and my next vacation- THANK GOD! wooooooooosah!
Can’t stop. Won’t stop. Never stop running.
The Lone Runner