Monday, May 12, 2008

Running Journal Month 5 (May 2008)

Week 22 (5/27-6/1)
Mileage to date: 590.1

I didn't run Tuesday through Saturday because my feet and left hip were hurting after the double pavement races and I just wanted a break. I swam and did weights and relaxed some instead, which was nice. Turned out to be a good idea since I got totally lost on the Sunday Practice Dipsea and ended up going what I estimate to be about 5 miles total out of my way, for a grand weekly total of about 12 miles (all on Sunday). Well, I didn't get "lost" as I knew how to get back, but I was searching out shortcuts (allowed in the Dipsea) and ended up taking a long-cut, by a lot. I think I've got the trail figured out enough for the real Dipsea, but I'll see if I can remember the shortcuts... Interesting week overall.

Race Stats:
DSE Practice Dipsea (should be 6.8M, but wasn't for me -see above); time? don't 2 hours or something ridiculous. Place? Not last. Woo-hoo. Lol. :)

Week 21 (5/19-5/26) *plus Memorial Day
Weekly mileage: 46.8
Mileage to date: 578.1

This week (plus Memorial Day) was packed full; I climbed, swam, ran, lifted and ran two races. As I don't want this blog to become an ode to my injuries, I'll just mention briefly that I was dealing with the same foot issues and a new (but I hope temporary) hip issue that I think I got from doing my ab work a certain way. Anyway, I can't wait to hit the trails again after all these road races - want the soft dirt. Sunday's DSE 5k race was in SOMA in a, let's just say, not so picturesque part of town, but at least I got a PR since this was much flatter terrain than my only other 5k to date (the DSE Easter Roller Coaster). The Marin Memorial Day 10k was much nicer (weaving through neighborhoods and along bike paths) and probably the flattest 10k I've run so far, which made my time my best to date - again, another PR. There were a lot of speedy runners there so I felt a little extra motivation to pick it up and a little competition with a friend from DSE didn't hurt. We stayed after the race to watch the little kids race around the track, which was highly amusing. Some looked very determined while others looked like it was tons of fun and some just got distracted and went the wrong way...I'd like to run this race again next year.

Race Stats:
DSE Mission Rock 5k - 23:23; ~7:33/M; Overall: [to come]; 3rd F; Age: [to come] PR
Marin Memorial Day 10k - 46:43; ~7:32/M; Overall: 320/560; 105F; Age: 28th PR

Week 20 (5/12-5/18)
Weekly mileage: 40
Mileage to date: 531.3

The highlight of this week was definitely Bay to Breakers, the 12k race through downtown San Francisco famous for its wild costumes, music and (in previous years) naked runners. The course starts on Howard Street on the San Francisco Bay side of the peninsula, swings a right on 5th and then goes up Hayes Street (up a hill), continues along Fell and then meanders through the Golden Gate Park along John F. Kennedy Dr., ending with a great view of the Pacific Ocean. Even though it was hot and sunny in the South Bay, it was a typical cloudy and cold day in San Francisco, but once I was running, that didn't matter. This was my first race that started in such a large and wild crowd and I had to weave around people like crazy in the beginning, but it was more entertaining than annoying. It took me around half a minute just to reach the start line - very different than my usual trail runs! Actually, this was a good thing as it prevented me from going out too fast and, by the time I got done with the Hayes Street hill, I had plenty of reserve left to run hard the rest of the race. I really enjoyed the different bands that were playing along the course and the cheering spectators kept me motivated. This was only my second 12k, but it was much, much better than my first (Emerald Across the Bay), both physically and pyschologically, and I had a ton of fun, espcially at the DSE barbeque party after the race. Can't wait 'til next year!

Other notes of interest from this week: I decided to try adding a bit of swimming in to my routine. I went out and bought a suit and hit the pool in an attempt to do laps. I really like swimming, but I definitely need to practice! The trick will be finding the time...

Race Stats:
Bay to Breakers 12k - 56:49; ~7:37/M; 692/22,439 overall; 104th F/11,518; 43rd Age PR

Week 19 (5/5-5/11)
Weekly mileage: 46.5
Mileage to date: 491.3

Ahhhhh. Everything is better this week. I made it out to the dish three times during the week, which felt great. I was a feeling a bit nervous for Quicksilver (Saturday's race) during the week since I hadn't done any of my usual longer runs (the longest was just 7.4 at the Dish) that I like to do at least once the week of a race that's longer than 10 miles. For some reason, I had it in my head that Quicksilver would be exceedingly difficult compared to the other trail runs I've done; however, once I got past the first climb, which I hiked up as fast as I could, I found it was mostly rolling hills along the top with scenic views and maybe one or two long gradual climbs on a fire road. The scenery and terrain were similar to Rancho, so I felt completely at ease despite the more technical trails (due to the rocks and sand). The main twist that I encountered at Quicksilver was being stung by a bee around mile 3! I felt this sharp pinch on my inner thigh, looked down, and a bee was stuck to my leg! During the run, another runner told me he had been stung three times and I heard later at the finish that a couple of other runners also got stung. I faced a moment of panic thinking that my leg would swell up or it would hurt too bad to continue running but, after a few moments, the pain was manageable and I convinced myself that the running adrenaline would numb it up and I'd just feel the pain after the race. This turned out to be true. My conclusion: I'd much rather be stung by a bee while running than take a rolling dive like the lady running in front of me did - that fall totally derailed her previously strong pace even though she was okay. Quicksilver got me a first place for my age group and I was the fourth woman overall. For the age win, this was well timed because I only have a couple months left in this age group and I am fully aware that the next age group is much more competitive! Also, I think that the really fast women probably did the 50k or the 50 miler, but, hey, small favors - I'll take what I can get. So, even though Quicksilver said they'd mail me the race t-shirt later because they ran out, I did get a nice plaque for my first place age group finish, as well as a very nice medal that all the participants got. DSE's run the next day was strange for muscles were okay but I was wheezing. I think I might have a mild allergy to some of the Golden Gate Park tree pollens...not a big deal.

Race Stats:
Quicksilver 16M - 2:33:15; ~ 9:35/M; ~24/100 [to come] overall; 3rd F; 1st Age
DSE Kennedy Drive 8k - 37:25; ~7:31/M; 40/108 overall; 5th F; 1st Age

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