Sunday, September 23, 2007

Almost there...

It's been about a month , so I figure I'm more than due to put up a post! Fortunately, I've been somewhat more diligent in my fundraising and a lot more diligent in my training than I have been with my blogging!

As of today, I'm at 74% of my fundraising goal with $830 to go. My deadline is Friday, September 28 so I'm definitely feeling the crunch. Part of committing to the goal was actually committing - if I don't reach $3250 by then, Lloyd & I'll be covering the difference out of pocket.

This morning, Sean and I went down to Lloyd's army reserve unit and sold home made breakfast burritos in exchange for donations. I have a couple of fundraising ideas left for the last big push, but I'm definitely feeling nervous.

The training is right on schedule, but I've been handling things a little nontraditionally:

I'm right on the coach's schedule for Saturday long runs. Yesterday I did a 10 mile jog around Coronado in the rain. It was, thankfully, uneventful for me. Liz is fighting injury again and wasn't able to do her scheduled workout. :-( I've been VERY fortunate and have managed to avoid injury so far this season.

I've been going to the chiropractor's office every other week, getting massages whenever I can, stretching more than I ever have, and doing LOTS of cross training. Liz and I have been meeting at the YMCA at 5:30 AM most mornings to swim, spin, lift weights and do the elliptical.

Most of my actually running has been at our team runs on Saturday mornings. I made it up to 18 miles last weekend (up and down the coast around Pacific Beach) and 16 miles on our "Train Run" (Train ride from Solana Beach to Oceanside and then run back to the cars) without too much suffering. I'd love to be faster, but I'm so grateful that the consistency of the mid-week training and gradually increasing long runs seems to be paying off and I'm not suffering too much.

So how is that nontraditional? Well, none of THAT really is. The unusual training comes in on HOW I'm doing the long runs. Instead of pounding out the miles at a pretty steady pace like I normally would, I've been doing the first 1/2 or so of my long runs with Liz at intervals of 5 minutes of jogging and then 1 minute of walking. We go at a pace that is slower than I normally would start out. It's so amazing to be with Liz as she reaches new distances and runs farther than she ever has in her life. Seeing her dedication and enjoying her progress has been such a boost for me. After I say goodbye to Liz when our routes split, I've been finishing my runs at a pace that is faster than I would normally run. I've learned to enjoy the solitude of a couple of miles of quiet and then the boost of saying hi to several of our teammates as I catch them, run with them for a couple of minutes, and then move on down the road. It's not in any of the articles I've ever read in Runner's World, but it seems to be working for me. I'm finishing the miles feeling relatively strong and happy so I *think* it's probably a good thing...

I won't be running with Liz on race day (October 21), so we've agreed that this Saturday we'll practice running apart as Liz sets out 12 miles for the first time in her life and I tackle 20 for the first time since summer of 2006. I'm hoping to get a good sense of my overall fitness level and gauge the likihood of meeting my race day goals. I grew up learning that a goal isn't a goal until it's written down, so let's make them official:

  1. I want to finish the race without ending up in a medical tent for any reason. Any one who has ever run a marathon (especially with me) can understand why this needs to be articulated.
  2. I want to finish under 5 hours. That's an average mile time of 11:27. I normally feel very comfortable running 10 minute miles, but a LOT can happen on race day and I want to set a realistic, achievable goal.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on my fundraising, unusual training style and race day goals. Feel free to leave comments or shoot me an email.

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