Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Chicago Marathon Training: Week Six - A 12 Miler in Florida

From here on out I will be tackling new distances and going past my usual 15 -20 miles per week.  This week I ran about 23 miles! 

Monday: 50 minute Easy Run - 3.71 miles
Tuesday: 35 minute Cross Training - Yoga Meltdown L1
Wednesday: 40 minute Tempo Run w/ Four Stride Drills - 3.87 miles
Thursday: 45 minute Run - 3.36 miles
Friday: 30 minute Cross Training - Yoga Meltdown L2
Saturday: REST
Sunday: 12 Mile Long Run

Wednesday I happened to be free to head to Fleet Feet for their Chick's Night Run.  I am more of a morning runner, but knew I would have a good time if I ran with the group so waited until 6:30pm to head out.  This weeks run was also sponsored by one of my favorite companies, Moving Comfort which was another reason to go.  I had a tempo run planned and have found the group running environment makes me run with a little more pep in my step.  I ran the designated out and back route and then ended with four stride drills.  It was warm out, but I felt good throughout most of the run.  I did notice some tightness in my upper back during mile three, but I think it was just stress related and went away after some arms shakes and a back stretch.  I also ran without my iPod which was a nice change.  Since the evening was sponsored by Moving Comfort we got to see the new Fall line, which is really cute.  Everyone also walked away with a goodie bag.
I went out to run again Thursday morning before work around the neighborhood and went without headphones again.  I decided to run without my usual knee straps, which was OK.  I felt a little soreness when I stopped, but otherwise the run was good.  

My back was still a little sore Friday so I did the Yoga Meltdown DVD, which helped stretched some of my muscles and it felt better afterwards.

At work this week while looking at next week's schedule I noticed that I was going to have four days off in a row and decided to check out flights to visit home in Florida.  The prices were a bit more expensive than I have paid in the past, but I had it set in my mind that wanted to go home and bought the tickets.  I had to get up at 3:30am on Saturday to get the early flight out of Chicago and back to Orlando.  I slept a little on the plane, but was still pretty tired when I arrived.  My long run is usually on Saturday, but it was already 90 degrees when I landed and I was tired so decided to push it to Sunday morning.  

I got up around 5:20am Sunday to try and beat the heat since I had such a long run planned.  I ate a small PBJ sandwich with crunchy peanut butter, which was pretty good, and cherry jam, which was just alright, and a glass of water.  
As soon as I walked out of the door the humidity surrounded me.  I started off slow and pretty much stayed slow the entire run.  The combination of the heat, humidity, and my lack of sleep made for a very long and slow run.  Since it was early I did get to see some creatures on my way out of the neighborhood including a large raccoon, a beagle, an opossum, a large owl, a hawk, a black cat, a fawn, two deer, cows, and two armadillos.  The owl in particular was pretty cool to see up close.  
The trail I took was pretty quiet and only saw about five other runners and some bikers while I was out.  I brought along a bottle of G2 with some water mixed in, Honey Stinger chews, and a mini water bottle.  I wish I would have brought more plain water because that is what I really wanted about halfway through as the temperature rose.  It was just a really long run; it almost took me three hours.  I was ready to be finished so when I had two miles left I picked up the pace a bit so I could just be finished.  It wasn't my best run, but I was so happy to be done.

I also finished listening to We Bought a Zoo on my run.  It was interesting to learn about how the Mee family ended up with the zoo and how they got it up and running.  I think I liked the movie more, although the stories are a bit different.  
Instead of having to run an out and back route I just ran out 12 miles and called my mom to pick me up after.  I chugged a huge bottle of water as soon as she picked me up.  I was so thirsty!  After some stretching I sat in an ice bath to help my sore leg muscles.  For breakfast I enjoyed a ton of raspberries and grapes, a toasted english muffin with butter, and spinach, cheese, tomato, scrambled eggs.
Tired, but glad to have finished 12 miles.
Do you ever see any cute or interesting animals on your runs?