Before you begin reading, know that this post is like many (most) of my posts–rambling with really no deep thought or takeaway.
With that said…
Well, two training runs down. A sh#t ton more to go. This is going to be one, long training season. And damn it, I couldn’t be more excited! Really.
Sarah and I rocked out a nice mile run this evening in just under an hour and a half, and I realized that it will definitely be these medium-long runs that prove to be my biggest challenge. More than anything, I’ve typically lacked the motivation. I’m generally a 3-4 days per week and 30 miles/week + speed work type of runner. But I decided to go hardcore for the Chicago Marathon and try a more aggressive plan that builds up to as much as 55 miles/week. So as we look to eat out less and spend less money in general, I think this plan is going to work. I just need to buckle down, focus and make it through the Wednesday/Thursday runs of 9+ miles, and I’ll be fine. It’ll be a day-to-day challenge, but I’m ready for it.
So, my schedule this week includes 32 miles total and looks like this:
- Monday – 7 mi w/ 10×100 strides
- Wednesday – 9 mi
- Thursday – Lifting
- Friday – Lifting (morning) and 4 mi (evening)
- Saturday – 12 mi
And, while the following has no relevance to running, these MVP commercials are my favorites right now, so I wanted to make sure everyone had a good laugh.
This post is going to be short … I fear if I provide too many details, I may convince myself that the truth is in fact, fiction.
I headed out on a seven mile run tonight by myself. Sarah had run earlier in the day after getting off of work early, so it was my turn. When I left the apartment, there were 73 minutes remaining on the timer (a stew was in the oven), and when I returned, the timer read 9:30. Now, figuring in about two minutes for stoplights, elevators and entering and exiting the building, I figure I ran seven miles in approximately 63 minutes. Kick ass.
As Sarah announced in her post yesterday … we’re engaged! The thought has been in my mind for some time now, and after driving up to Michigan to talk to her father two weeks ago, I decided I couldn’t wait any longer and popped the question following a brief business trip. Life is fantastic.
Annnnyways, with the St. Patrick’s Day celebration going on today in Chicago, Sarah and I woke up early to get our 13 mile run in. It actually ended up being more like 12.5 miles, but really, who cares? It was actually quite nice, minus a brief stop at the restrooms, and despite my fear last night, the weather was MUCH better than I had anticipated. It was in the mid to low 30s, but the wind was nowhere near as bad as it might have been.
After the run, we headed downtown to meet up with a few friends, see the greenness of the river and watch the parade, and while the river was indeed a bright, bright green … the parade was extremely disappointing. In fact, I’d go so far as to say the parade was crappy and a waste of my leg energy. I envisioned floats, bagpipes, etc … and instead, I saw a bunch of people walking in between a few things they called “floats,” most of which were filled with teenage, Shirley Temple-looking girls who made me cringe rather than jump and say “woooo whooo … it’s St. Patrick’s Day!” So we abandoned the parade, and instead went and paid for small, overpriced green beer. Ahhhh … St. Patrick’s Day.
I went to my first Bulls’ game last night. A friend from college came in to town, and as luck would have it, he was given four tickets to the Bulls’ game. The experience was quite interesting because, well, the Bulls suck. A lot. And naturally, as sucky teams do, they lost. But it was fun nevertheless.
This morning, Sarah and I headed out on a six mile run … and damn did we get more than we bargained for. The lakefront path was all slushy (and covered in snow in some areas), so with each step we took, we had to gain our footing as best we could. It not only made for a great run, but a great leg workout as well. Between the run and the trip to the gym that followed (to get a proper leg workout in), the morning was quite productive.
And now … now I’m searching for a coffee table online (among other things). Damn these things are expensive. I thought I could live without one, but when I have Sarah or other guests over, it’d be nice if I could offer them somewhere to set a drink. Oh, and for some reason, I think it’d be an extra nice touch if I could offer them a place to set there food down. Maybe it’s just me?
The gym stunk this morning, a lot. Actually, that’s unfair … the entire gym didn’t stink, but rather the entrance and area with the majority of the cardio machines. And I don’t mean that it stunk as in “oh, this sucks” or “damn, this is hard.” No. The gym stunk as in “does someone need to change themselves?” and “who keeps farting?” It was awful. For thirty long minutes, Mouse and I worked out on the elliptical machines, and personally, I thought about quitting more than once. It was suffocating. You couldn’t breathe.
Now that that’s out, I’d like to publicly state that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting up early in the mornings to workout before work this week. When Sarah suggested the idea, I pretty much had convinced myself that I was going to hate it. But I’ve discovered it’s really not all that bad. The gym is nowhere near as crowded, and before eight o’clock in the morning rolls around, I’ve already completed my workout for the day–which means I don’t have to worry about hurrying home after work to do just that.
Having a dedicated workout partner like Sarah really, really helps too and is probably the most important factor. If I had it my way, I’d be lazy and go to the gym late at night. She provides perspective and great motivation for me to get my lazy butt out of bed to hit the weights and treadmill before work. She asked me if I’d keep going to the gym in the morning when she goes on work-related trips, and in all honesty, I told her no. We’ll see what happens, but getting up by yourself to workout by yourself … well, it isn’t quite the same.
Tomorrow is a six mile “Arctic” run, my first in temperatures below zero. Luckily, thanks to a great Christmas gift, I’ve got the gear to make it a somewhat decent experience.
Stay warm everyone!
Before I get into a long post regarding waking up at 5 am to go workout, let me take time to mention the awesome Christmas gift Mouse’s brother got me–a KU branding iron. I’m not nearly stupid enough to attempt to use this on a living being, but my food … my food is a completely different story. Quesadillas, steak, chicken, etc. The possibilites are endless. And talk about timing! The KU mens’ basketball team is off to their best start in more than a decade, and before you know it, March Madness will be here. I’ll be branding food left and right. Okay … not that much … but it will be fun to have the option.
In other exciting news, Mouse and I hit the gym bright and early this morning, despite the cold walk up. It’s been well-documented that I’ve never been a fan of getting up early to go workout, but it definitely makes it much easier when you have to be accountable to someone. We did a quick three miles on the treadmill followed by light weight work, and tonight, will cap it off with some easy yoga. We did the power yoga last night, and I’m not ashamed to say this, but it kicked my ass. A lot. Hopefully, doing it more than once every two to three months will greatly improve my flexibilty and strength. We’ll see.
I realized somewhere along the way that if I want to get stuff done, I’m just going to have to do it whenever I can. Hence, I’m blogging this morning, before I get on the bus and head to work. I’ve also managed to buy Mouse two Christmas gifts and catch a bit of the news. How freaking awesome is that?
Anyways, last night, Mouse and I headed out for a three mile run. Snow was falling heavily by the time we started, and it made the path extremely nice and soft to run on. Much to my surprise, it wasn’t as cold outside as I was expecting. Work was pretty frustrating yesterday (I even had to work from home for a bit), so the run was exactly what I needed. Upon returning back to Mouse’s apartment, she made the best meal ever — baked beans and sausages. The baked beans were absolutely incredible.
We sat throughout the evening as the snow continued to fall outside. Unfortunately, I had to work a bit, but Mouse kept me entertained as she explained her diamond/potato chip theory. Good stuff man.
Okay, well, I guess I should start heading to work. My parents come in to town this weekend, so tonight will be spent doing some laundry, cleaning, etc. And of course, we’ll be running.