Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Half-Marathon Training with B: Week 2

I hope that you all had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Mine was, well, emotional. But that is not what this post is about. Let's talk about running! Weeeeeeeeeee!

My work schedule has yet to jive with my training schedule, so I have not been strict about keeping to the days on the schedule (which is fine). Here is my recap of training, Week 1.

Week 2, Day 5: Tuesday, 3 miles
I am going to have to start writing this stuff down immediately after the fact, but that would require way too much responsibility! I am pretty sure that this was my first morning run. Temperatures were predicted to reach 90 degrees by 3pm, so I decided to face my morning fears and conquer my 3 miles before work. I got up, drank a half cup of coffee and ate half a banana. I waited 30 minutes and then set off. It was cool and sunny. There weren't many people on the running path. Finally, no 2x2 walkers to dodge and elbow!! I don't remember this run being too terribly difficult. I think I had a few side stitches that eventually worked their way out. It was pretty uneventful.

Week 2, Day 6: Thursday, 3 miles
Here is where I deviated from my schedule because I was too lazy to wake up early enough on Wednesday to run before work and the high temps and rain set in that afternoon. So, Thursday morning, I crawled out of bed and basically had a repeat of Tuesday. I was supposed to be running "pace" but I am just not at that level yet. (Pace is the speed that you would like to run your race. Say, you want to run 8 minute miles during the race, then you run at that pace on this day.) I average just under 10 minute miles, and I am totally okay with that. Underachieve, much?

Week 2, Day 7: Friday, 3 miles
I wasn't sure that I would be able to get this one in due to Thursday evening's work event, a wine tasting. I thought that I would be able to keep things professional and sit there while everyone else indulged in sips (yeah right) of $24-$30 bottles of wine, but I'm just not that disciplined. So, before I knew it, I had joined the rowdy table and was throwing them back with the best of them. Cue splitting headache on Friday morning. Luckily, I had worked a 12 hour day on Thursday, so I was allowed to come in at 10. Again, this run was pretty much a repeat of the previous two, although I struggled a bit more than usual due to alcohol.

Week 2, Day 8: Saturday, strength training
If you have looked at the training schedule (above) then you might have noticed "cross," as in cross-training, on every Sunday. This is the day when you are supposed to do some sort of exercise except running. You can go for a walk, a swim, ride a bike, lift weights, etc. It is not recommended that you play a sport like basketball or soccer in the case of injury. Well, I decided that since I haven't really seen the weight loss results that I was expecting, I would try strength training once a week to tone that fat into muscle. This is an excellent idea that I executed very poorly. I accompanied W to the gym and proceeded to allow him to dictate my strength training regimen. He had me doing shoulders, arms and abs and always wanted me doing about 5 to 10 lbs. more weight than I could handle.

It's obvious, W. My elbows are inverting. IT IS TOO HEAVY.

One of W's biggest pet peeves is that I don't do any strength training. His insides curdle at the mention of "getting big." And yet, he would gladly up my weight in 5 lb. increments each week. YOU MAKE NO SENSE, W.

Let's also keep in mind that it had been well over a year since I had done any strength training at all.

I did some machine where you sit down and pull the bar into your chest. Can't you tell I'm obviously a gym rat? This worked the muscles under my arms and the tops of my shoulders. These are technical descriptions of muscles, duh. I did this for 10 reps, 3 times. Then, W wanted me to grab 15 lb. dumbbells (!!!!). I grabbed the 10s and laid on a bench and pressed them 10-12 reps, 3 times. Then, I grabbed 5 lb. dumbbells and lifted them straight out, then out to the side, and then did bicep curls, 10-12 reps each, 3 times. THEN, W had me do triceps, 10-12 reps, 3 times (where you hold your arm at a 90 degree angle behind your head and bring the weight up). THEN, W had me sit on a bench, bend over and lift the 5 lb. weights from the ground, back and out. PHEW. My arms were spaghetti at this point, but W said I was finally done with arms and shoulders.

On to abs. This is where I should have just stopped or walked away--WALK AWAY FROM THE INCLINE BENCH, B! DON'T YOU EVEN THINK OF TOUCHING THAT MEDICINE BALL. But, I didn't listen. Abs were what I was really looking forward to as I carry my weight around my middle. So, I thundered ahead full speed and before I knew it was doing crunches on the steep incline with a 10 lb. medicine ball. DO NOT DO THIS. I finally had to stop after barely 40 crunches, because my body just couldn't take anymore. I know that isn't a lot, but it was the one time that my body made it very clear that I needed to stop. Thank God I listened.

Week 2, Day 9: Sunday, 5 miles
I woke up Sunday morning and felt like I had the flu, had been hit by a bus, was dying, etc. My entire torso was just one giant ball of stiff, aching and sore muscles. I could barely pull myself into a seated position. I sneezed and thought that my abs might explode. I immediately regretted Saturday and my stupidity, knowing that 5 torturous miles awaited me. Thankfully, we had a cold front come through on Friday, so Sunday promised to be 65 to 70 degrees all day. I waited it out until noon and decided it was now or never. I went for it. 5 miles. It was pretty rough for the majority of it. My sore muscles actually had very little to do with it. I had side stitches that I just could not get rid of and I had decided to wear a hat. My eyes are super sensitive so I usually wear my huge sunglasses that just aren't conducive for running. I spend most of the run pushing them back up my nose. I decided that a hat would remedy the situation. Except that the hat just made me hot. While it was probably only 70 degrees, the hat made me swelter, but I was too afraid of my hat head to take it off. Either way, I ran the whole way, slowly, but still running. I only stopped once at about 4.25 to give a man the wrong directions to a gas station...... OOPS. I am so sorry, man. That stop made the remaining .75 miles nearly unbearable, but I finished.

And then, the misery set in. At first, it was just the general after-run misery of pounding head, racing and erratic heart rate, gasping and profuse sweating. I don't even want to know what W thought of me as I stood outside the door, pounding on it for him to let me in. He asked how it went and I just grunted. It was all I could muster.

"That bad, huh?" he asked.  

SHUT UP, W. IT WAS YOUR STUPID MEATHEAD WORKOUT THAT DID IT, I screamed back at him, of course, in my head. I did not have that kind of energy right then.

So, I did what always works. I stripped down to my skivvies, turned the ceiling fan on high, assumed the spread eagle position directly under the fan and poured water into my face in the hopes that some of it might collect in my mouth. That's when it happened. Previously sore and stiff muscles were suddenly throbbing with sharp, shooting pains. My triceps felt like they were being stabbed with steak knives. My abs, oh, my poor abs. I have spent the last two days with watery eyes and a dripping nose as I absolutely refuse to sneeze or blow my nose or cough for that matter. It hurts too bad to do any of those things. I have also been dodging W every time he gets that "I-just-want-to-squeeze-the-life-out-of-you-as-I-hug-you" look on his face. I swear every rib has its own very complex set of feelings and they are all PISSED at me. And, boy, have they let me know it!

So, kids, don't do this to yourself. I still think that strength training is a great idea and I will try to work it into my training whenever possible. BUT, don't do it the day before your long run. Just, don't. Don't do it! And, definitely don't overdo it. Just, don't listen to W. That is the moral of this story.

Total mileage for the week = 14

How's your running going?


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