Yoga, running, fitness and life
tRAINING RUN #1
This morning's training run was the first in the series the NYRR does in preparation for the NYC Marathon (I'm running it this year). It's a non-competitive, non-scored run with miles varying from 6-20. My goal was 13 miles.
I received an email yesterday afternoon saying that due to heat conditions, the run would be shortened to 15 miles. Heat conditions. Urgh. I notoriously don't do well in the sun and heat.
I arrived early enough to use the P.O.P.s 2x and enjoy my usual pre-run crumb cake (it's homemade, it's scrumptious!). Knowing we had full course support, I didn't bring my hand-held water bottle. But I still wanted to find a water fountain before running. In Central Park, they're EVERYWHERE. Except when you need to find one. The one at the ball field where Race Central was, literally dribbled water when I pressed the button. Urgh. I asked a volunteer where I could find the next closest water. He directed me to the Start line where he figured there'd be water tables. There weren't. I asked another volunteer, he directed me to the medical tent. I asked an EMT where I could find water and he pointed me to a cooler with bottles. YEAH. Another EMT handed me an ICE PACK on my way out of the tent. YEAH YEAH.
Instead of corrals, they sectioned off runners by pace groups. Knowing the heat would be bad, and wanting to continue with my "slow down" experiment, I joined the 12:00mm group (having never actually run this slow, I figured I had no excuse to "fail" in the heat! But since my easy runs have been at about 11:45 lately (and there was no 11:45 group, I didn't want to move up to the 11:26 group), 12:00mm it was. The pace leader was super perky and smiley. The runners in the group were real friendly and we killed some time with chit chat.
When our leader took off, she really took off! I glanced at my Garmin: 10:40!!! That's not even close! Whhhaaaaaat??? On the upside, we went quickly into a strong downhill so I figured maybe she'd slow it for the uphill coming (Harlem Hill... "THE" hill). No, no she didn't. Mile 1: 11:05. 11:05!!! All I could think was, "I'll never get these miles done at this pace in this heat." I was thinking I'd drop the group, when at Mile 2 (11:35), we slowed at the first water station. Since I still had water, I slowed some, but continued on. I totally thought Ms.-Perky-who-doesn't-understand-pacing will soon catch up, but she didn't. I never saw them again.
Luckily most of the course is in the shade. I'm sure that's a big reason I survived the miles. After the first 6 mile loop, they had bananas and Gatorade. I took a banana and dumped the rest of my water for a complete fill of Gatorade. The second loop cut Harlem Hill and was only 5 miles. I noticed the flags went from the Yellow Caution to Red, High Alert. I maintained somewhere around 11:35 pace for a chunk of the run, but the last 2 miles were getting hard. It was SO. HOT. I had a Gu that was more like syrup it was so warm in my pocket (blech).
Completing the 2nd loop (11 miles), we were told to stop completely; they black flagged the course and were about to break everything down. It was officially too hot to continue. We all got ice packs (yes!), bananas, and more Gatorade.
11.25 miles @ 11:40 (I knew I couldn't do 12:00mm) ... 2 more miles walked
...something called Bertolotti's syndrome. That's what the MRI scans say. That, and some deterioration between L5/S1 (I already knew this) as well as mild bursitis in the right hip. I have to wonder if the bursitis is a result of what's coming out of the back these days? Overall, I don't get too many complaints from the right hip.
Bertolotti's syndrome however, is defined as: "... an uncommon cause of low back pain, particularly focused along the waistline slightly off to the side, that is often confused with sacroiliitis. Bertolotti syndrome is a diagnosis given to someone with symptomatic pain due to a transitional vertebra which is inflamed." www.spinemd.com
This explains why I feel the pain at my right SI joint. Yeah. My next step is to see a spine specialist for further evaluation. In the meantime, my orthopedic doc told me I can continue with the marathon training (yay!) as long as I'm not having pain while running. Interestingly, I develop pain from doing housework (that's actually NOT a joke!). So I have to figure out how to coax my hubby into vacuuming and cleaning out the litterboxes!
In running news... Sunday was an active rest day. Hubby and I went biking into Manhattan and took a spin through REI where we kitted out our bikes for more everyday use and I got new cycling shoes! :)
Monday I ran an easy-paced 7 miles at 11:48 pace. Nice and easy.
Tuesday I only ran 2 recovery miles at 11:45 pace, then went swimming for 30 minutes. I also saw my PT (sports therapy).
This morning I biked to the gym for my LT run (no way was I doing that outside when there were heat warnings!) that included: 2x 1 mi @ 9:45 w/2 min recovery and 3x 200m @ 1:04 pace w/200m recoveries. I continued at a ridiculous 11:50 pace to round out an even 6 miles of running.
Tomorrow is another crazy-busy day, but I'll squeeze in an easy 5 miles with at least 30 minutes of core work, OR I'll get to Pilates after my lunchtime class.
Despite a cranky back that's plagued me off and on all week, I put in a respectable 30.65 miles this week. Admittedly, I've had to take Advil at least one time a day, but overall I think I'm doing OK. Tomorrow "officially" begins marathon training, although it is a SRD (scheduled rest day) for me.
This week saw mostly easy-paced miles (I deliberately added :30 seconds to my easy pace to see how it might affect my ability to nail desired goal paces while doing speed work) and a LT (lactate threshold) run with intervals for 6.65 miles on Wednesday.
Friday morning I went for the MRI, scanning the lumbar spine and right hip. I go back on Monday for the right SI joint. Urgh. Not sure when I get back results, but I'll be running as long as I feel fine to do it.
Cross-training this week included swimming laps on Tuesday, Pilates on Sunday/Thursday (I also do 30 min core workouts 2x/wk), and I'll be biking with hubby tomorrow in Manhattan, possibly on the Greenway along the west side of the city. We'll see.
Today I ran an easy 8 miles, taught a hot yoga class, then went to see Spider-Man. Hubby and I walked to our storage unit to pull out my bike for tomorrow. Garmin puts my total mileage today at 16.40 miles. Pretty nice.
Aside from blogging here, I post daily on the Beginners' forum on RWOL. Been doing that for over two years now. I received some devastating news yesterday when I found out a fellow Masters runner who's been on RWOL for years suddenly passed away. At only 59 years of age, it was a shock. I'm still in the dark on details but I'm sure they'll be forthcoming. Just makes me remember that our time can be up rather unexpectedly. Carpe diem. And as my virtual RWOL friend always said: "Run Inspired"