Week 11 (8/24-8/30)

Week 10 was a solid week, I left some miles out there but overall I was content with the week.  Coming up is another tough week with 3 longer runs, after that I get a bit of a reprieve.

Monday:  4.1 Miles (Pace 8:11)

Today was a good day to start off the week and inspired me to run my mid-week article about the running community.  I ran later in the evening, the humidity returned, but was bearable.  I ran around my neighborhood.  For the last few runs around my neighborhood I always see a group of young boys playing in the same area.  Everytime they see me one yells, ‘Hi’ and I yell ‘Hi’ back, then he says ‘My name is Justin’ and I’ll respond ‘Hey, Justin how’s it going?’.  Our brief conversation always goes that way, today he yelled back you always say the same thing, I laughed to myself, by then I was to far away to say anything back.  It is reassuring to see nice young people in the area.  (Gee, I sound old. haha)

Tuesday:  10.2 Miles (Pace 8:56)

My friend Kristen was suppose to run with me today she wanted to run longer than we normally do at Tin Roof, which is where I met up with her and some other runners.  I wasn’t sure if I was feeling up to 10 today and I told her I would be running at a slower pace.  She took off with the other runners who were running around a 7:45 pace, about a mile in I broke off and ran by myself the rest of the way.  They only ran about 5 miles total.  I ran around the stadiums, Fed Hill, Locust Point, Ft. McHenry, and back along the promenade in the harbor.  I picked up my pace after mile 7, to change it up a bit and make sure I could do after running slower.  When I got back to Tin Roof everyone had already left, so I went to 7-11 got a gatorade and drove home.

Wednesday:  5 Miles (Pace 8:04)

The MAC was suppose to start a new run group tonight to take the place of City Sports Run Club.  When I arrived only one other person was there and I asked the staff if there was going to be a run tonight.  He said no, it would start next week.  Since I was down in Harbor East I decided to run the loop I would have ran with City Sports.  I ran into Kristen about a 1/4 mile in and we ran together.  It was a negative split run and I was pretty happy with it!

Thursday:  2.1 Miles (Pace 8:11)

A tempo run was scheduled for today, but I sort of squirmed out of it.  I wasn’t sure what I was going to do for my long run this weekend and I rationalized that I sort of did a tempo run yesterday and talked myself into an easy run around my neighborhood.  I was really happy with my splits, I eased into the run with a 8:43 mile and turned it up the second mile and ran 7:43.

Friday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:21)

Even though I took it easy yesterday, today was a scheduled rest day.  I ran in the early evening and took an easy run around the neighborhood.

Saturday:  9 Miles hiking; 1 Mile (Pace 8:11)

Today, plans changed about 10 times.  I was supposed to go hiking with my friends, then I arrive and they told me we were running.  I didn’t have running shoes, but said I would run in my Vibrams.  Then we get started on the trail and we decided to hike, but I left my water and gear so I didn’t have anything to drink. We hiked 9 miles in about 4 hours.  The terrain wasn’t that difficult but my legs were tired after being on my feet for that long in Vibrams.  We stopped and ate afterwards, the food was good, but it did not agree with me.  I stuck close to home for a while.  Once I starting feeling better I decided I should get in a mile.  Today I was suppose to run 10 miles, but the time I was on my feet and how I was feeling I figured a mile run would make 10 and that is I rationalized it.  Plus I wouldn’t have been on my feet for so long if I had just ran 10 miles like I wanted to, anyway…

Sunday: 17 Miles (Pace 9:35)

It was a bit warmer today than it had been the rest of the week, so I decided to hydrate throughout the day and run in the evening.  This run was the first one in a long time that I decided to take a fuel belt with me.  I had 20 oz. of water and some bloks to help keep the sugars in my body up.  I was feeling great during the run, I decided to start at the Korean War Memorial and do a tour of the city.  I ran the docks on Clinton St. then up to Patterson Park where I did some laps and hills, then along the promenade to Harbor East, into Locust Point, through Fells and down into Little Italy.  I felt strong throughout the run, I was drinking a little bit of water every 4-5 miles and taking a blok at the same time.  I would chew on them for about a mile instead of eating it quickly.  Everything was going great until just before Mile 16, I’m not sure what happened.  I looked down at my Garmin and things started to go black, I almost fell over.  I thought I had been taking enough fluids and eating, but I started to think I was dehydrated.  I thought there was a convenience store close by so I made a loop and doubled back, but no such luck.  I knew one was about a mile away in Power Plant so I made my way over there.  I wasn’t feeling good at all.  I bought some water and gatorade and mixed them together.  I was starting to feel better.  I gave my left over water and gatorade to a homeless guy outside the store.  I chatted with another one for a little while about exercise, he told me I should do some pull-ups and I’ll get ripped really quick!  I thanked him for the advice, popped another blok and started running again.  This time I think the blok actually made me feel worse.  I was running on President St, trying to figure the quickest way back, when someone started yelling my name.  It was my best friend and his wife driving by, I yelled back to turn around but they didn’t hear me.  I stopped and called his cell phone it went straight to voicemail, thankfully his wife answered.  They were getting dessert at Vaccaro’s.  I asked if they could give me a ride back, they said they could, so I ran over to where they were at.  As I got to the bakery, my Garmin beeped for 17 miles.  I got really stiff on the quick ride back to my truck.  I know I left 3 miles out there, but they weren’t going to be quality miles and I wasn’t feeling well.  When I got home I stretched out and sat on the floor for a little while.  I wasn’t really feeling well, but that is to be expected after a long run.  I hopped on the scale, I always weigh myself before and after a run, I had lost 7 lbs. on this run.  That could explain why I wasn’t feeling well, most of that was water weight.  I drank some more fluids, but didn’t feel like eating.  After an hour I started feeling better and had a light snack, before finishing typing this and going to sleep!  Overall, I think this was a good week of training but I’m looking forward to the reduced mileage next week!  Oh and next week is a race week, I decided to run the Charles St. 12 for the first time!

Total Miles:  49.4

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Not the best photo, but I took it after 17 miles so...
Not the best photo, but I took it after 17 miles so…

Running Community

My thoughts may be a bit scattered this week for Thinking Out Loud, but hopefully they come together in a way you can understand!

I’ve had a really good running week so far, not in the actual running sense, rather in the running community!  The running community is unique, there are no membership cost, no official sign ups, if you want to be a part of it you can be.

I once saw on a meme “If you care if someone calls you a runner or a jogger, you are a runner!”  It made me laugh but it is that simple!  All you need to do is take that first step and keep on going, if you run 1 minute, 1 mile, or 100 miles you are a runner.

Sometimes I do get irritated with the running community (see Pet Peeves #1).  This week though I have been reminded repeatedly why (most) runners are great people and fun to talk to!

On Monday, I had a friend I had not heard from in 10 years send me a message on FB to ask me about running his first marathon.  I think he has been reading my blog or saw my post about training.  By no means am I an expert but it made me feel really good that he would ask me for advice, I referred him to a few websites and gave him some tips about running his first marathon.  Later in the day I called Boston Street Running to ask if they had a weekly run group, I’m looking for one after last week 😦  They currently do not but I had a really great conversation with Miguel from the store and I’m looking forward to stopping in and meeting him.  We actually talked about my blog, he put a link up to the odd mileage races on the store’s website.  That reminds me if you are looking for a race this weekend the first ever Baltimore 6-miler is Sunday.  Looks like a great course along the water!

Source: bostonstreetrunning.com
Source: bostonstreetrunning.com

Tuesday I ran with some friends, I ran a bit longer, but if gave me time to think about why I started running and all the great experiences I have had with the running community.  You never know where running with take you!  It has taken me to the Bahamas, Philidelphia, Providence, Niagara Falls, DC, and a few other places.  When you are going to a desitnation for running you meet great people who share your passion.

IMG_4302

People always say to me, ‘you must really love running’ I joke back saying ‘on some level I must, just not consciously’.  I do enjoy the health benefits of running and you can do it anywhere, anytime, with minimal equipment, and it is all about the effort you want to put in.

Today (Wednesday) I went to a new run group at the MAC but it was cancelled.  I decided to run in Harbor East anyway.  When I walked out of the MAC one of the Harbor security personnel commented on my shoes and we had a great conversation about running and how to get started.  I do love talking to people and hopefully motivating them to start running, you never know where it will take you!  Once I started running I ran into my friend who was running and we ran together for 5 miles.  I enjoy running with other people even if we aren’t having a constant conversation, most of the time I enjoy the company.  After running I stopped in Lululemon (of course I bought a shirt) and had a great conversation with some of the staff who I consider friends!  They asked about how my training has been going and told me about some new yoga classes for athletes I should check out.

The running community is full of all sorts of people with different personalities, backgrounds, goals, and great stories!  If you are on the fence about lacing up your running shoes or are worried you aren’t going to be fast enough I would encourage you to throw those cares away, get out, and log some miles alone or with someone!

You don’t have to be fast, you just have to put one foot in front of the other!

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Re-cooping after the long run.

Week 7 (7/27-8/2)

In week 6 I got things back on track and even added a few miles.  After this week I will be traveling again, this time to St. Thomas for vacation!  I’m looking forward to it, but in this week I need to focus on training!

Monday:  3 Miles (Pace 8:09)

This evening the air was still and thick, my legs felt like logs after putting in 10 miles yesterday.  My cadence seemed like it took forever to complete one rotation.  As I started running I thought about cutting the run short, then I realized a marathon is about fighting through being tired and finishing the race.  As I completed the first mile, my Garmin 220 beeped 8:47 a bit slower than I wanted to but I wasn’t sure how the next 2 would go.  I took off my tank top, not because of the heat because yesterday I forgot to put on some ‘protection’ when I ran, so my chest was a little sore (get the point?).  My pace started to pick up a bit.  Then came the gnats, swarms of them.  Since the air wasn’t moving, they seemed to be everywhere.  My Garmin 220 beeped 7:57 for mile 2, much better even though my legs were tired.  As I ran I think I swallowed a gnat, I know one landed on my lips.  I looked down and my chest was covered in gnats, I tried to wipe them off as I ran, but  they kept piling on…I clocked my third mile at 7:40!  Negative splits.  I felt like I was pushing much harder and I hope that feeling will pay off when it comes time to tackle 26.2!

Just a few on the gnats 'left over' after colliding with them during the run.
Just a few on the gnats ‘left over’ after colliding with them during the run.

Tuesday:  3 Miles (Pace 6:31); 1 Mile Pace (9:41)

Conditions this evening were less than ideal for speed work, lets be honest they were down right brutal!  The heat index was 94 with 60% humidity, yeah it sucked!  Yesterday, I agreed to meet two of my running friends to do interval training, we were texting throughout the day and everyone knew it was going to suck tonight!  We did 6 x 800 repeats.  After the first repeat my throat felt like a desert, I didn’t think I had 1 more in me, let alone 5 more.  We took quick breaks in between intervals, but they didn’t seem long enough.  After 3 intervals I looked at my watch, 9:56.  I remarked I could remember 10 years ago I could run that same distance 4 seconds faster without stopping.  Elizabeth quickly reminded me I probably had rested legs as well, very good point!  After the 4th interval I was sure I was done, but Cat talked me into another and then I talked her into one more.  We all got our 6 x 800s in.  I was spent, I thought about running home, we were in Patterson Park, it is about a 4 mile run.  After a mile I decided to stop and get a veggie pita from Samos in Canton and call it a night.  The mile after the intervals was rough.  I have been streching more frequently and noticed a big difference the next day, so when I got home I made sure to strech.  My legs were tired and sore, but I know putting in the work now will pay off come race day, and it is always better to put in the hard work with two great friends!

A beautiful sunset after a tough workout!
A beautiful sunset after a tough workout!

Wednesday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:30)

Anguish, it’s the only way to describe the pain I had when I woke up around 0400 hrs to use the bathroom.  I thought I was going to have to crawl to my bathroom.  I stretched after running, but my heels were still throbbing in pain when they touched the floor.  I hobbled to the bathroom and back to the bed.  When I woke up in the morning I knew I had to stretch more.  I hobbled to my guest bedroom and spent some time stretching which helped.  I find it odd my heels hurt so much, I am more of a toe to mid-foot striker when I run.  The intervals yesterday had really done me in.  I was thinking today was going to be the day the streak ended.  After spending most of the day stretching and hobbling, I decided I would try to run a mile just to keep the streak alive.  I was a painful start and the rest of the run felt less than comfortable but I got the mile in to keep the run streak going!  Day #277 in the books!

Thursday:  1 Mile (Pace 8:06)

Today I did something I haven’t done in a while, ran only a mile back to back.  My legs were still sore from the interval workout.  As I started my quads felt like they were going to fall off my legs, but I got into the groove.  Even though I wanted to run more, I knew to stay healthy I shouldn’t risk it.  I was surprised at my pace when I finished.

Friday:  5 Miles (Pace 8:32)

Finally my legs were starting to feel normal, I wanted to get up early and run before the heat set in but I hit the snooze to many times.  I ran in the middle of the day and while it was hot, it was much less humid.  I thought about running a bit further, but my plan is to run 20 miles tomorrow so I didn’t want to push it to much.  I ran around my neighborhood, and had two dogs run up to me because they weren’t on leashes.  That caused me to stop and pet (hold) the dogs while their owners came to get them.  I didn’t want the dogs to keep running because I run in the street and I was worried they might get hit by a car.  I don’t understand why people don’t use leashes, especially if their yard doesn’t have a fence.  Overall a good run today!

Saturday: 19 Miles (Pace 9:38)

After hitting the snooze once I was up and moving around.  I was dreading the miles I was about to put in.  I met my friend Elizabeth around 0630 hrs.  I took an Uber to her place, my driver told me I look to heavy to be a marathon runner (we were chatting).  I don’t think he meant to be rude.  He quickly said most are really skinny.  I know I’m not really skinny, but when I weighed myself this morning I was 146, I think I’m okay.  Although my plan is to lose 10 more lbs. before the marathon so I am a little lighter.  Anyway, when I got to Elizabeth’s she looked about as enthused as I was to log the miles.  First thing I said, “I don’t wanna be a runner anymore, I wanna be a sleeper!”  We both laughed and off we were.  Around mile 8 or 9 we stopped for water, between mile 12-13 I was feeling really bad.  Things wouldn’t stop shaking and I almost told Elizabeth I think I was going down, but I figured she would notice me missing after a few strides, haha.  Fortunately, I didn’t pass out but I knew I needed some electrolytes.  Around mile 15 we stopped for more water and I got a gatorade.  I told Elizabeth I wasn’t feeling well and to push ahead if she wanted.  The next 4 miles were slow for me.  I wound up doing 19 and she was probably a little over 20. When we finished, we both sat, actually I laid on the ground for a few minutes.  Ugh, another run in the books and I know what I need to work on.  Oh, and I lost 6 lbs. on the run, where’s that Uber driver???

Sunday:  3.1 Miles (Pace 8:30)

Surprisingly I did not feel as bad as I thought I was going to today.  I was sore, but not in pain.  Throughout the day I did have some aches and pains that came and went but nothing intolerable.  I did feel more tired than usual which I attributed to running 19 miles yesterday.  It took me almost a mile to loosen up and feel like I could get into my stride.  After that I felt pretty good and was happy with how I ran today.  Overall, I think I had a good week, but the toughest one yet in the training!

Total Miles:  36.1

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Re-cooping after the long run.
Re-cooping after the long run.

 

Running Quirks

I call them quirks, maybe you call them something else; habits, superstitions, or ‘must dos’ before or during a run.  I’m not sure if all runners have quirks or things that must be the same all the time, but I know I have some.  So I thought I would share by thinking out loud and see if you share any of them or others of your own?

1.  Puting my shoes in the same place after running

This is a quirk I have developed in the last month or two.  I rotate between a used pair of shoes and a new pair of shoes to try and extend the life of my new ones.  I write the date I ‘retired’ the used shoes on the bottom now, but I didn’t always do that.  My quirk is that when I take my new shoes off, I must untie them, loosen the laces and sit them by the back door.  My used shoes must be placed at the exact opposite end of the kitchen.  I think I started doing this so I could remember which ones are which, before I started dating them on the bottom, then it just became something I have to do.

As you can see my shoes look the same, I buy same ones every time...another quirk?
As you can see my shoes look the same, I buy same ones every time…another quirk?

2.  The way I put my socks on

This one I have been doing since I was young.  One day I was watching an episode of Mr. Rodger’s and he was teaching kids how to put their shoes on.  He remarked he said he always started with his left foot.  Since that day I always put on my left sock and my left shoe first.  When I grabbed my socks I look at them at pick out which one is going on each foot, not that they are different just another quirk.

Disclaimer:  Not my socks!
Disclaimer: Not my socks!

3.  The direction I run

When I run in an area or loop I am familiar with I always run the same way.  I know advice from the experts is to switch it up so it doesn’t get boring but I like consistency.  Just last night while doing speed work, my friend asked if we should change the direction we were running on the track, I opted for no.

One Way

4.  When my shorts get tied

My shorts aren’t falling off before I tie them, no need to worry about that.  I tie my shorts right before I start running, I do this to keep any extra pressure off of my stomach.  I don’t tie them really tight but I like to make sure everything is snug and just the way I like it prior to and during the run.

Has nothing to do with tying shorts, but when I put 'run shorts' in the search engine this came up and I thought it was funny...enjoy!
Has nothing to do with tying shorts, but when I put ‘run shorts’ in the search engine this came up and I thought it was funny…enjoy!

5.  My watch latch must be in the same hole

This is annoying even to me and I don’t always get it right.  I don’t like my Garmin 220 to tight or to loose.  There is one hole that allows my Garmin to rotate freely, but not all the way around my wrist.  I can just give it a little twist and I can see the screen.  If it is to tight I feel like I am constricted, to loose and it feels like it will fall off.  I don’t always get it right and sometimes I have to make adjustments during the run.  I have thought about counting the holes or marking the right one…

ForeRunner 220

6.  Race day attire

Prior to discovering Lululemon I ran in the same shorts for nearly 13 years.  Don’t worry I washed them and I had several pairs, they were my Air Force PT shorts.  When I transitioned to new running gear, some of that need to wear the same thing stayed with me.  On race day, I like to wear the same gear, weather permitting, for each race during the season.  No real reason behind it other than I know I’m comfortable racing in that gear and that helps to ease my mind; one less thing to worry about.

af pt shorts

7.  Diet leading up to a race

Maybe this isn’t a quirk, but I’m including it anyway it is something I do.  I don’t know why I picked the time frame I did, I don’t think there is any science behind it.  For a 5k race, I won’t have any alcohol a day or two before the race.  For a half marathon, I won’t have any alcohol 2 weeks prior.  Finally for a marathon, no alcohol for a month prior.  Not that I drink a lot, but I want to make sure my body is in the best shape it can be for race day.  I like to think of the body as a machine and you have to give it the proper fuel!

prohibit

8.  Tying my shoes

I’m thinking this one might be the most common shared by runners or I could be totally wrong.  I have to make sure my laces aren’t to tight and not to loose.  That’s not the quirk.  The quirk is when I retie one shoe I have to retie the other to make sure the pressure is the same.  Just the other day I was out on a run and within a 1/4 mile I probably retied my shoes 4 times.  There was a rock in one I couldn’t get out, finally I found it in my sock.  Having the lace pressure correct and even is a must.

New Glycerin 12 Ombres
New Glycerin 12 Ombres

9.  Pre-race arrival time

This is another quirk that harkens back to my military days.  ‘If you’re not early you’re late!’  I have to be everywhere early, I think this annoys some of my friends.  It is a habit (quirk) I can’t break.  Normally I am 15 minutes early to everything, come race day I like to be 30 minutes early or even more.  I want to make sure I have time to get comfortable, take any last minute fluids, get rid of any last minute fluids.  I’ve had the experience of being the last person to cross the start line and had to jump over the deflating arch.  I was in the Bahamas for the marathon and in the porta-potty when the race started.  Always being early is a must for me, if I’m not my nerves start to get jittery and that is not good before a race.

Time is ticking!
Time is ticking!

I think that is all of my quirks, hopefully you don’t think I’m crazy or have OCD, cause I don’t!  Wait isn’t that something a crazy or OCD person would say…no of course not!  Anyway…

What are your running quirks?

-Veggie Fueled Runner

FullSizeRender (4)

Running (Pet) Peeves

Sometimes when I am out enjoying a run, or trying to enjoy a run, some things irritate me.  I thought I would compile a list and see if you feel the same way?

1.  Not smiling or waving back

When I run and see another runner or biker I usually wave, smile, or nod my head to them.  Just a sort of ‘Hey I know we are both suffering out here, keep up the good work!’  Baltimore is called Charm City, I’ve heard we were given that nickname as a joke and sometimes I think that is the true.  Other runners and bikers rarely respond.  When I tell people this, they say well maybe they didn’t see you, um, they were looking right at me.  What happened to just being friendly when you are out and about.  Maybe I’m expecting to much?

Try smiling back, you never know what could happen!
Try smiling back, you never know what could happen!

2.  Retractable dog leashes

This is probably my biggest pet peeve, literally!  (see what I did there)  You may have read in my last blog about when I ran into a retractable dog leash I could not see.  That was not the first time I’ve had issues with people and retractable dog leashes.  What I mean by retractable is those leashes that allow the dog to go anywhere from 10-50 ft from the owner and then retracts when the dog walks back.  When running the waterfront people allow their dogs to walk on one side and they walk on the other, they basically create a gate across the entire path.  One day, in my neighborhood, I had a person acknowledge I was coming and then he let his dog run up to me on a retractable leash.  We had quite the exchange of words after I almost tripped over his dog.  If you are going to use a leash like that, why use one at all?  You have no control over the dog; it is a safety hazard for other people and for the dog.

Let's keep the leashes to 6ft and dogs under control.
Let’s keep the leashes to 6ft and the dogs under control.

3.  People oblivious to surroundings

I’m sure we have all run into these types of people, hopefully not literally!  (maybe I should write a blog on puns)  These are the people who somehow passed second grade but don’t know their right from left, or left from right (subtle pun)!  Whenever I’m running up behind someone if the path is tight I will call out ‘passing on your left’.  This causes people to freak out, and go every direction but to the right.  I’ve actually had more problems with these people while riding my bike; unfortunately a few have gotten more acquainted with me and my bike then they would have liked.  Not on purpose they just zigged when they should have zagged and didn’t leave me enough time to react.  I digress, how about those people who are walking towards you or just standing in the middle of the path staring at shiny things!  Just this week, when I was running a person was walking towards me and I motioned which side I would pass on, last minute he changes his mind.  I avoided running into him, but I fell and scuffed up my hands; nothing severe.  Let’s not forget the little kids who’s parents don’t keep an eye on them, parents don’t let your children wander to far away from you in crowded areas, that should be obvious.

Let me just take up this entire sidewalk...
Let me just take up this entire sidewalk…

4.  People who yell things

Women I get it, ‘cat-calling’ is not appropriate!  Men experience this too!  Probably not the same way.  I experience it more in my own neighborhood than anywhere else.  On more then one occasion, okay probably weekly, I will be out running and someone has something snarky to say.  Usually it is some snide remark, sometimes I can’t understand them because they are slurring their words so much.  In those cases I will give them a ‘special’ wave and keep on running.  Only on a few occasions have I actually stopped when something was said to me, come to think of it the only time I have is when running by the bus stop.  Bus People, ugh!!!!  I’m not categorizing all people who ride the bus, I do from time to time.  Heck the people who say things may not even be riding the bus, they might just be hanging out at the bus stop.  People, ugh!!!  Anyway, I’m not one to just let things go without a response if I feel one is warranted, sometimes you have to stop and let people know what they said is not appropriate.  I’m usually not so kind in my phrasing or tone.

Cat calling!
Cat calling!

5.  Smokers

You wouldn’t really think this is a problem when running, but if you run in an area with restaurants or businesses you probably know what I mean.  People who congregate in one area and puff away on their cigs, that’s what all the cool kids call them; I think.  It creates this plume of smoke that billows from the area like the exhaust stacks from a factory.  I usually pull my shirt up over my nose or cover my nose with my hands.

Puff Puff!
Puff Puff!

Don’t forget to enter my giveaway before July 30th, you could win a Nike+Sportband!

What are your running (pet) peeves?  How do you deal with them?

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Look!  Something sparkly!
Look! Something sparkly!

Odd Mileage Races

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I’m just Thinking Out Loud here…What’s up with races that have odd and unusual mileage?  I’m not talking about a 5k, 13.1, 26.2, 50k, or even 100k though they are ‘odd’ mileages.  I’m talking about the races that aren’t that common as in a 6k, 10 miler, 12 miler, and the most recent I have seen a 6 miler.  Let’s start out with a race I do like and have ran three times but got me thinking about this entire issue…

Source:  baltimoretenmiler.com
Source: baltimoretenmiler.com

I like to be able to run a distance I am familiar with and have the opportunity to PR if I have a bad day.  A few months back I ran the Baltimore 10-miler and had an ‘off’ day.  Before the race I was probably over confident that I was going to get a PR, because my training was going really well.  It wasn’t in the cards though, I missed my PR time I had set the year before by close to 2 minutes.  It was very disappointing.  As soon as I got back to the car I started looking for another 10 mile race.  If I remember correctly I think I found one and it was a few hours away from me.  Waiting a full year to try and PR at that distance again really irked me, but I’ve resigned myself to that and will just have to wait.

Source:  Dundalk Heritage 6k Facebook Page
Source: Dundalk Heritage 6k Facebook Page

There is a local 6k race, the Dundalk Heritage 6k, held on the 4th of July.  It is a pretty awesome course that goes along the route of the 4th of July Parade.  4th of July is Dundalk’s second season, the other is Christmas.  But I digress, I didn’t run the 6k this year because I had committed to other things that morning but I’m not sure I would have ran in it anyway.  My training schedule called for a 6 mile run that day, 6k is well short of that so I would have had to add on miles.  A race like this doesn’t really fit into a training plan and it isn’t a race distance you see to often.

Source:  active.com registration page
Source: active.com registration page

Coming up in September is the Charles Street 12, a mostly downhill 12 mile course in Baltimore City.  In past years I have steered clear of this race because it was held in August, traditionally the hottest month in Baltimore.  This year I am going to run it to gauge where I am at in training.  My plan calls for a half marathon that weekend, but this is close and I’ll run a little before or after to make up the mileage.  Again here is a race distance that only happens once a year, so I better hope to have a great day and not have any unexpected ‘stops’ or issues on the course.

Source:  bostonstreetrunning.com
Source: bostonstreetrunning.com

Finally the Baltimore 6-miler, which is a new race this year, is the distance I am least adversed to.  While it is an odd race distance, I think it is much easier to work it into a training plan and adjust the rest of the week if you need to.  Though it did strike me as odd when I saw the advertisement, why not make it a 10k race?  It is another .2 miles and a much more common race distance.

Is this just a pet peeve of mine?  What do you think of odd distance races?  Does knowing you will have to wait along time to try and PR again deter you from running certain distances?  When you are training for one race will you run others?

Don’t forget about my free giveaway, coming up on July 30th!

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Week 5 (7/13-7/19)

I felt great about Week 4 and the miles I got in, I thought they were quality and though I moved the days around a bit, I was able to get in all my miles plus some.  So far I am really happy with the training plan and the variation in schedule that it has.

Monday: 3.1 Miles (Pace 8:11)

Another travel day, off to Providence.  I wasn’t sure what the plan was for the evening, it was between dinner with friends or co-workers an no one could decide what to do.  Knowing that a decision wouldn’t be made till late I figured it was best to run before I got on the plane.  I hadn’t packed but I’ve moved half way around the world and packed in 2 hours so I knew I had enough time to run around the neighborhood.  The weather was already warming up at 1000 hrs. when I ran and like a typical Baltimore day the humidity was high.  I was happy to only have to run 3 miles today, I was a bit tired from Week 4 even though it felt good, plus I had run less than 12 hours before.  After the 3 miles I packed for the week and I was off to the airport!

Tuesday: 3 Miles (Pace 8:37)

Seven miles was not in the cards today. I had been in meetings from 0800 to 2000 hrs. I was worn out after 12 hours of meetings.  I had thought about trying to get in 7 miles but my stomach was a bit full after having dinner, plus I didn’t start running until close to 2045.  I was a bit disappointed that I didn’t get in 7 miles and knew I would have to make it up Wednesday.  It was an enjoyable run along the canal in Providence and it reminded me of running in Baltimore, just a bit cleaner and less crowded.  Normally WaterFire is only held every other Saturday in the summer, but for some reason they had a special showing tonight and they were starting just as a finished my run.  I showered quickly and then went over to walk around the river and listen to music before calling it a night.  Three miles and WaterFire was a good way to end a long day!

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Fire Path
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Fire Basin

 

Spirit of WaterFire?
Spirit of WaterFire?

Wednesday: 7 Miles (Pace 8:32)

Well I had to do 7 miles today since I didn’t yesterday.  Our meetings ended earlier, at 1730, but when we went outside the sky looked ominous.  I checked the radar and clearly a storm was moving in from the south.  I wanted to run before dinner but I didn’t want to get soaked.  A few of my co-workers wanted to get dinner so I decided to go, thinking that after dinner the rain would have passed.  It is restaurant week in Providence so we went to the Capital Grill.  I ordered brussels sprouts (my favorite) and mashed potatoes.  Pretty much the only things I could eat on the menu.  I was less than impressed, the brussels sprouts weren’t seasoned very well and were soft instead of crunchy, the mashed potatoes were okay.  All through dinner I kept looking out the window but the rain never came.  It was still overcast when we finished dinner around 2000 hours, but it didn’t look like it was going to rain.  I quickly changed and hit the pavement.  In the nearly six years I’ve been coming to Providence I have never ran the hill that leads up to Brown University, it looks like a beast!  I decided today would be the day. About a mile into my run mother nature had it in for me and the sky opened up, it started raining pretty hard.  I rounded the corner and stared up the hill towards Brown.  I glanced down at my Garmin 220, I wanted to know how long the hill was, in my mind it was miles long. Surprisingly it was only .2 of a mile but the elevation climb was 111 ft. with an average incline of 13-16%.  Once I was at the top I was relieved and winded, but I had made it.  I looped the University property twice and ran back down the hill.  Going down was almost as hard, I needed to lean way back and slow my pace.  Not only because of how steep the hill was but because of the rain. I was happy to get back down without falling.  I looped around the canal and back towards the hotel, finally in mile 6 the rain let up but the wind picked up.  Mother Nature made sure she made me pay for not running the 7 miles on Tuesday.  Even though I was soaked it was a good run and my legs felt great!

Thursday:  1.1 Mile (Pace 8:08)

After running in the rain last night I wanted to give my legs a rest before doing a tempo run and let me shoes dry out, but today was a travel day from Providence, back to Baltimore, then on to Deep Creek Lake.  I was going from a work trip to a weekend with my friends.  Time was not going to allow me to rest my legs before a run, nor did I have time for a tempo run.  I hit the snooze once and reset my alarm once before I woke up.  I had to be ready for meetings at 0745, I finally walked out of the hotel lobby at 0700 to run.  The morning air was unusually cool even for Providence.  I did a quick mile around the city and it was off to meetings.  I figured I would try to make miles up later this week, but I also felt a cold coming on.

Friday:  1.1 Mile (Pace 8:11)

After a plane ride, shuttle trip, and a cab ride I arrived in Deep Creek at 0030 hrs.  My friends had arrived earlier in the day, I spent some time catching up with them and went to bed around 0300.  The next morning, we went white water rafting at Wisp Ski Resort.  It was a blast!  The plan was to get lunch and go out on the lake next.  My friends had towed a pontoon boat from home.  So much for making up some miles, my week was really getting derailed by other activites.  The area around the cabin where we were staying was a bit hilly but not hilly enough to make up for low mileage.  The run streak stayed alive!

Saturday:  4 Miles (Pace 10:36)

Long run was the plan today but by now you have probably guessed the training plan was out the window this week.  Today we planned to play disc golf and went out on the lake again.  Right after breakfast my best friend asked me if I wanted to run.  I figured it would be better to get the run in before the day really started.  We ran a slower pace than I normally do but it was good to run with him and chat about the last couple of weeks since I have been traveling.

Sunday:  1 Mile (Pace 7:58)

Today we had to pack up, load the boat, and drove back to Baltimore which is about a 3.5 hour drive.  On the way we made a 2-hour pit stop at the casino and ate lunch.  We got back to Baltimore around 1830 hrs, we still needed to put the boat back in the water, tie it up, and drop everyone off.  After a long day of traveling and not feeling the best the past few days (I think I have a slight cold) I didn’t feel up to a long run, it was a quick mile around the neighborhood.

Total Miles:  20.3

-Veggie Fueled Runner

Attending WaterFire after my run!
Attending WaterFire after my run!