Mommy Wants a Timeout

In which I contemplate absurd moments in parenthood, occasionally attempt to refer to myself as a “triathlete” while keeping a straight face, and maybe post some random pictures of stuff I’m knitting

Archive for the tag “racing”

Back in the Saddle, Again…

Ahhh, that was a nice, long rest, wasn’t it? I feel refreshed, energized, motivated…to blog again, that is. Sorry for the long delay…Since my Oly tri in September, life has been full: family, projects around the house, and yes, goal-setting and training for the next race.

I’m the Parent of a Kindergartener!

Hard to believe it, but the kiddo turned 6 in November. He’s happily attending a kindergarten a full half-hour away from our house. The long commute creates the perfect opportunity for him to pepper me with relentless questions like these:

1. How long until our sun turns into a supernova?

2. How much cheese can you eat before you have a heart attack?

3. Is a baby shower like a meteor shower, with babies falling from the sky? (I’m pretty sure he was joking with this one…At least I hope he was!)

All pretty reasonable questions, though none quite as wonderful as the one he asked me a year or two ago: “Mommy, what do the actors do when we press ‘pause’ on the remote control?” I laugh every time I envision a crew of tiny people inside our TV standing around waiting for my son to press “play” again.

Trying to find answers must count as some kind of training for my brain. I swear I’ve done speedwork on the track lately that was less exhausting than a 20-minute conversation with my son! Still, I’m loving this stage of his childhood, where his creativity and curiosity are expanding so quickly, but his little body still fits perfectly next to mine when he crawls into bed for a snuggle on Saturday morning.

I’m Training for a Half-Marathon!

After my Oly tri in September, I vowed to take a couple weeks off from training. I lasted 5 days before going out for a run. I waited a little longer before setting some new goals, then decided it’s time to jump back on the horse that threw me. My summer of training left me feeling stronger than I ever have, so I hunted out a training plan in which I run only 3 days a week, so I can continue to swim and bike at least once a week. It’s not an easy plan, though; I set a goal pace for my HM, and the plan calls for tempo runs, speedwork, and a long run all at prescribed paces to help me achieve that goal. There are no “easy run” days or junk miles, but I’m actually pretty happy with that. It’s nice to set out with a purpose for every workout, and so far I’ve been able to meet or exceed my goal pace with every one (although last week’s 6-mile tempo run nearly made me cry.)

I’m just hoping my body’s revolving display of nagging aches and pains (Left foot! Right knee! Left hip! Upper back!) doesn’t progress to anything steady and debilitating. With a little luck, February 16th will find me CRUSHING my half-marathon PR and nailing my goal pace! Either way, I’m feeling pretty good about the way I’m running right now.

(Disappears for 3 weeks, continues to train for her race and be a mommy, then remembers she has a blog again…)

And, here I am again. Today was the last run of the peak week of training for my HM. I’m proud to say I met or beat the prescribed pace for every tempo run, track workout, and long run I’ve done. I had weekly mileage totals that were way higher than I’ve ever had in the past, and all on 3 days a week of running! I cross-trained on the bike and in the pool, too, which was a nice break from the long run workouts.

At this point, I don’t even really feel that much pressure to nail my goal pace for the half. I’ll run hard if I feel like it, or back off if it feels like too much. The real victory I’m celebrating is having the self-discipline to push myself through mile repeats on tired legs, or an 8-mile tempo run when my stomach was cramping…or just getting myself out the door for a long run on a cold day when I could have stayed in my warm house.

So send me some happy thoughts on February 16th, if you think about it, but rest assured that I will be having fun no matter what. After all, the hardest part of my race is already finished.

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The Voices in My Head

I forgot my iPod before my run the other day, so I was forced (shudder) to be alone with my own thoughts. My internal dialogue led to some conclusions which may or my not be helpful in my future training: namely, that maybe running isn’t necessarily supposed to be fun and easy all of the time, and that maybe I have a tendency to be too easy on myself. I don’t know if these conclusions are actually true, since they were based an ongoing argument between two competing voices in my head:

Whiney Me: “You know, it seems like running should be easier by now. After all, I started up again way back at the end of June.”
Tough Me: “Well, you HAVE been pretty easy on yourself, with all the super-slow run-walking you’ve been doing. Maybe if you stepped it up a little, you’d be making more progress.”
Whiney Me: “Well, I didn’t want to aggravate my injury or anything. Besides, Jeff Galloway said it’s okay to run-walk…Preferable, in fact.”
Tough Me: “I don’t think Jeff Galloway was picturing a 12-minute-mile running pace when he came up with his run/walk method. If you can walk faster than you’re running, maybe you don’t deserve a walk break.”
Whiney Me: “Or maybe I should just turn into a race-walker instead.”
Tough Me: “Yeah, and make me listen to you complain about how much your hips hurt everyday? Forget it. Keep running.”
Whiney Me: “Fine. But is it time for a walk break yet?”
Tough Me: “You’re only running 3 miles…You haven’t EARNED a walk break today. Keep going.”
Whiney Me: “You’re kind of a mean inner coach, you know that?”
Tough Me: “Well, you’re almost done with your run, and you haven’t taken a walk break yet, so it must be working, right?”
Whiney Me. “I guess…But next time remind me to grab my iPod before I leave home, okay?”

In the interest of pushing myself a little, and in the name of tradition, I ran the Blue Lake 5K again this year. It was the first race I did when I started my triathlon journey over two years ago, and last year it was a fun way to cap off my tri season. This year, it was really a test of where I was in my injury rehabilitation program. I ran the whole thing at a pretty steady, hard effort…and finished over two minutes slower than last year. Oh, well…I already knew my fitness took hit with my 4-month layoff. Still, this time I was almost a minute faster than the first time I ran this race, so at least I’m not back to square one!

One way to take home an age-group award? Pick a race with a really small field!

This guy ran a good race, too. 5 minutes for the half-mile kids’ run!

I had an absolutely lovely 4.4-mile run last week, so I’m thinking of setting my sights on a Thanksgiving Day 10K. That should give me a little motivation to keep working on those longer runs…And maybe it will silence my inner critic, too!

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