Whirlwind

This jerk stole my pizza.

It’s definitely starting to feel like the last half of the year has completely flown by.  I sat down to look at my list of blog posts for the past month and realized just how much this space has been ignored.  I’m going to try to make blogging more of a priority next year because 1) I enjoy it and 2) keeping a record of what I’m doing and how I’m feeling has been amazing for my training.  

In terms of training, following Space Coast, I’m taking a bit of an easy month.  This year has been a lot of rebuilding and it was definitely a push towards certain events – getting back to triathlon, getting back to running double digits, and finally getting back to the half marathon.  So for December, I’m taking it easy, getting in workouts, but also making sure to prioritize rest and recovery.

Of course, rest is easier said than done in December.  I’m sure that rings true for many of us.  For me, December means holiday choir concerts.  This past weekend, I sang three holiday concerts.  It was amazing and insanely exhausting.  I joined this choir in January of 2008, so it’s been a pretty constant presence in my life since I moved to DC.  Over the past couple of years though, I had sort of started to dread rehearsals.  For the most part, I enjoyed participating, and I liked singing, but sometimes, rehearsals felt like a drag.  This could be partly because they go from 7:30-10 on a Monday night, which is past my bedtime.  

This year, we have a new music director (only the third since the choir began in 1941), and he has brought with him a new energy that I didn’t know I needed.  It has made rehearsals a lot more fun, but it’s also an absolutely exhausting way to start the week.  Still, I’m enjoying it much more than I have in years, so I’m glad I didn’t give it up.

I’ve been trying to figure out what my goals for 2019 are going to be.  2018 went off the rails quite quickly, but turned out to be a pretty awesome year just the same.  I’m hoping we can skip the “off the rails” part and just go into the “pretty awesome” part for 2019.

Do you make New Year’s Resolutions?  Set goals for the year?  Got any suggestions for me?

November Mileage Recap

ImageParty / Pixabay

Okay, so I can’t believe November is already ending.  Yes, I have probably said this every month, but seriously, where is the time going?

November was a great month!  I finally, finally got to race a half marathon and it went so well!  I’m still working on my recap, but in sum, it wasn’t my fastest, but it wasn’t my slowest, and it didn’t hurt.  I feel like I’m finally back.

However, in November, I also did my best to avoid going to the pool.  I don’t mind swimming.  It’s a good workout and I always feel great having done it.  But I just don’t like going to the pool.  Swimming is my only AM workout – all the rest happen after work, so I suspect it’s simply that I don’t want to drag myself out of bed and head out into the dark, cold morning.  Summer swimming is nowhere near as bad.

November Totals
Swim: 2.5 miles
Bike: 74 miles
Run: 77 miles

Yes.  I went to the pool twice.  Two times all month (and one time was today).

I’m actually blown away that my run miles topped my bike miles, but this was a very run focused month.  So many long runs.  But they were absolutely worth it.  I even did a 13.1 mile training run, which is the longest training run I’ve done since I was marathon training years ago – usually I top out at 12.  But I trusted my coach on this one and she was right.  I probably didn’t need that extra 1.1 miles (actually the plan only required 13, but I was getting that last .1), but it absolutely gave me the confidence I needed going into my race.  I knew that I could cover the distance without pain and not having that stress on race day was huge.  It also gave me an idea of what my finishing time might be, which removed that stress.  I know I’ve lost speed this year, and while I know it will come back, that doesn’t mean that I don’t feel a twinge of disappointment that I’m not immediately fast again (“fast” being a relative term – I am very much a party in the back kind of racer).

My next race isn’t until April, so I’m looking forward to a few months of rebuilding and getting into shape.  I have big plans for 2019!

2018 Totals
Swim: 54.6 miles
Bike: 1504 miles
Run: 286 miles

Next Up: Space Coast Half Marathon

Free-Photos / Pixabay

As I continue to make my triumphant return to running, I have my next big goal coming up next weekend – the Space Coast Half Marathon.

This will be my sixth year running this race, and I always look forward to a weekend of spending time with friends, running a great race, and getting into the Christmas spirit.

This year’s race is big for a couple of reasons.  It’s my first half marathon of the year.  I haven’t raced a half marathon since last year’s Space Coast (and technically, I had to walk the last chunk of it because I pulled my soleus).  So this is sort of the last big hurdle in my recovery.

Am I ready?  You bet.  I’ve been doing a ton of PT, and my coach made me run a 13 mile training run, so I know I can cover the distance.  Will it be fast?  Nope.  Though it probably won’t be my slowest Space Coast either – that honor goes to the first year I ran it, when I woke up with a crushing headache but refused to not at least try.  But I’m not letting myself look back at my previous race times.  I don’t want to know how much slower I’ve gotten because it doesn’t matter.  I don’t want that to be on my mind while I run – I just want to have fun.

Do I have a race plan?  Basically, don’t get hurt and have fun.  I think my sister may run with me, and I may also end up with some friends.  I’m certainly not planning to push myself.  The course has a time limit such that I could get lost, have a picnic, get back on the course, and still finish with time to spare, so it’s nice to not have that worry.

I am really hoping to end the year on a high note, since this time last year, I was struggling with hip pain and it was a frustrating way to end the season.  But really, finishing at all will be a win in my book.  And I’m confident I can accomplish that.  It’s been a long road to get here, but it’s been worth all the work.

 

 

Coeur Team 2019!

As many of you have probably seen on my social media, I’m super excited to be back on the Coeur Ambassador Team for the fifth year!

This team has truly become a family to me.  I love all of these ladies and I’m excited to get to know all the new members on the team as well.  Every single one of these people is amazing, and if you see any of us out there training or racing, don’t hesitate to say hi.  Need advice?  Just ask?  Just need a friendly face?  You’ve got it.

Seriously, just knowing these people has made me a better athlete and a better person.  They’ve helped me push out of my comfort zone and do things I never thought I could.  They supported me through my frustrating recovery, and I’d like to think I was able to support some of my fellow team members in the same way.

This is always a tough time of year when triathlon teams are announced, as there is excitement and hurt feelings all at once.  It’s so tough when a friend doesn’t make a team they were hoping to join.  I’ve definitely had my fair share of rejections over the years.

But the thing is, there are great groups out there.  So many great groups.  Awesome Facebook groups, various forums online, and groups like The Collective Beat, which is Coeur’s community team.  I joined this team last year and met so many awesome ladies, and will be joining up again for 2019.  Definitely check it out and see if it’s right for you.  It’s filled with very uplifting ladies who have created a phenomenal community.

If you prefer in person, check out your local triathlon club or clubs.  Can’t find one?  Make one!  Or at least see if you can’t find some local folks to bike or run with.  Create a Facebook run event and see who shows up.  It sounds intimidating, but it’s really super easy, and who knows who you might meet!

October Mileage Recap

I’d say I’m officially back to running.  With the Army Ten Miler under my belt and some more double digit runs on the way, it feels good to finally be able to train again.  I’m still working to bring the speed back as well and I am so stiff the day after a long run, but that will all improve with time.

I’m also starting to think about my 2019 race season.  I’m still going to be doing quite a bit of rebuilding, but I’m hoping for some big things come mid-year.  I’m not sure that I’ve mentioned it here, but next year, I’m tackling 70.3 Ohio!  I haven’t done a 70.3 since 2016, so this is going to be real test of my recovery.   Mostly, I’m just excited to race with a whole bunch of friends and do a bunch of stupidly long training rides.

October
Swim: 3.8 miles
Bike: 117 miles
Run: 54 miles

Not too shabby!  Considering I had a choir concert in there with a ton of hours of rehearsal, this is some pretty decent mileage.  Of course, as it’s getting cold, it’s getting harder and harder to go to the pool in the mornings.  I read somewhere that even Olympic swimmers loathe the moment they have to get into the pool on a cold winter morning, so it’s good to know that feeling’s never gonna fade.

2018 Totals
Swim: 52.1 miles
Bike: 1430 miles
Run: 209 miles