I am addicted.
To what? Well, we all know about the popcorn. (Which, by the way, they have the microwave caramel popcorn at WalMart! It is amazing, just make sure you get all the unpopped kernels out or Mr. T will break a tooth. I do not know, though, that this item will convince me to go back to WalMart.)
I am addicted to things that are more closely related to running, not just random foods. In fact, the things I’m thinking of are all about running, they are all connected, and they all basically boil down to having an adventure, which is how this whole blog started and how I got addicted to running in the first place, and if you are wondering if this is a run-on sentence, well, it is, but a damn well-written one, if you ask me.
I’m addicted to running adventures, whether that means running with out-of-town friends, just running in a new place or breaking into new and faster paces. New paces, places and faces. Well, the faces are not particularly new to me because, so far, I have met my out-of-town running buddies before, but you know what I mean.
NEW PLACES & FACES (SORT OF)
On Sunday, since I was in her hometown for a dog show, Kim and I got to run together. I’ve met Kim several times, and of course, follow her blog, and we’re friends on Facebook, yada, yada, yada. But I’ve never actually run with her before.
But before our run, she and a friend (who also shares my name and has a boxer), came to watch Bennie lose. Afterward, she toured the motorhome and T Junior complimented her on her “tall socks.” He’s obsessed with tall socks…sort of like someone else I know, who killed her first 70.3 this weekend.
Kim mapped out a 6-mile loop through a rural part of town that she’d never run before. I was extremely appreciative of this since my run there on Saturday led me to a lot of dead-ends, and 7.5 miles of back-tracking can wear on you pretty quick.
The route was absolutely stunning. As we began to venture into some farmland, we ran up a hill and were treated with the view of sprawling green pastures dotted with white sheep and anchored by traditional red barns.
It wasn’t always picturesque, though. There was the farm house that had some Chihuahua guard dogs that pretended to chase us. Kim was a little worried, but all I could think of was the peculiarity of it all. Chihuahuas? Really? I guess I always pictured hounds or herders or golden retrievers as your typical barn dogs.
We also saw a creepy tree and graveyard – two things that reminded me of running buddy Zoe. Yes, it does sound odd that I thought of Zoe when I saw a graveyard, but she likes creepy stuff and is always trying to get me to explore it with her. I believe creepy is as creepy does as creepy should be left alone.
Mostly Kim and I just chatted away about running, personal goals, life and blogging. Time passed too quickly and we were soon back at the motorhome where Mr. T and T Junior were waiting for me to return so we could get things picked up and get on the road to home. (Another run-on! So sue me.)
Monday marked the beginning of Seattle Rock ‘N’ Roll Half training. I’m using a mash-up of two training plans: one made by Coach Mel for me and helped me score my 1:52 half PR at You Go Girl last September, and the other is from Run Less Run Faster, which helped me take a minute off of my 5K PR in 3 months.
I will run 3 days a week, except when I run more, and cross-train at least twice a week except when I don’t. I will strength-train using the RLRF strength routine and Jillian Michaels videos 3 times per week except when I say I’m too tired and I sit on the couch and catch up on The Voice instead…with popcorn.
As far as a goal pace, I’m training for a 1:50 half. I’m not that married to the time, though. I simply want to keep my fitness level. The Seattle RNR Half does not have a nice 1-mile downhill in it like You Go Girl does. Or, at least, I don’t think it does. It’s a new course.
I did look up what RLRF said my half could be based on my 5K PR, and when I saw what it was, I laughed my head off. Yeah, 1:40 in my dreams. But maybe I could reach those dreams. Right? Because I’m addicted to getting faster and faster. I just want to see how fast I can go, okay? What in the hell is wrong with me? I know I will need to work at it, and I will need to lose a little weight. Not a lot, maybe 10 pounds. Maybe less.
Okay, so what does this training plan look like?
Monday: Tempo (Short Tempo Pace: 8:00; Mid Tempo Pace: 8:15)
Tuesday: Strength and/or cross
Wednesday: Alternating weeks with easy runs and track workouts
Thursday: Strength and/or cross
Friday: Long run @ Half Marathon Pace + 30 (8:50)
So…NEW PACES! My 5K training paces were slower for Short and Mid Tempo Paces (8:16 and 8:23, I think), but my long run pace was faster (8:43). On Saturday, I did a test long run at the 8:50 pace and, after about the first mile, it was pretty comfortable.
Okay, so Day 1 of Seattle RNR Half Training: THERE WAS SUN. I wore a pleated pink Nike skirt my sister gave me for Christmas and my orange Hood to Coast Relay shirt. Yeah, I was bright.
Goal: 10-15 minute warm up at an easy pace, 3 miles @ Short Tempo pace (8:00), 10-15 minute cool down at an easy pace
What I did: 1.25-mile warm up (approx. 11 minutes), 3 miles at 8:01, 8:01, 8:03, 1.28-mile cool down (approx. 12 minutes)
The run was fantastic, especially the first part since the “out” is slightly downhill on the Cedar River Trail. The “back” was torturous. The headwind was constant and strong, the sun was in my eyes (but, hey, I was NOT complaining), and the trail is slightly uphill.
I know about the downhill/uphill, but I continue to park at this location simply because it is close. I always think it’s not a big deal, but when I’m running and dying on the uphill, I seriously question whether that semester I was on the President’s Honor Roll in college really happened or if I just imagined it.
Do you continue to run a route that’s less than stellar? The word stellar totally reminds me of this CEO I used to have to ghost write letters for. Anyway, what are you training for right now? What plan are you using? Have you ever made your own plan before? I’m a little nervous about it.