ilanarama: me, The Other Half, Moab UT 2009 (marathon)
[personal profile] ilanarama
So hey! Yesterday was my birthday! It was a pleasant day in a low-key way, but the best thing about it was that I went on a NINE MILE trail run. That's the longest I've run since my stress fracture back in April, and makes for the most distance in a week since then, 31 miles. (My "running week" runs Monday through Sunday.)

And today I registered for The Other Half Marathon in Moab UT, which incidentally (the 2009 race) is where the photo I use for my "running" userpic came from. I rarely buy the professional photos from races, as 1) they are ridiculously overpriced, and 2) I usually look like I'm trying not to throw up, but I bought a nice big print of this one as a gift for my folks, because I actually look cute and happy here. It's a beautiful course through the Colorado River canyon, a well-organized race, and there is free local microbrew at the finish. If I run the Winter Sun 10K in December (which I plan on), then since I also ran Canyonlands in March, I will have the "triple crown" of races put on by this organization; this will get me a guaranteed entry to Canyonlands next spring, bypassing the lottery. Finally, I always share a room with a friend from Grand Junction and we make a bit of a party weekend out of it.

On the other hand, after a summer of no running while my metatarsal healed, I'm totally not in half marathon shape. Or at least I'm not by my own current standards. I'll be more prepared than I was when I ran my second half marathon, but I feel less prepared - I suppose because my definition of 'prepared' has changed over the years.

In early 2008 I badly bruised my foot by banging it on the footboard of my bed (you may infer on your own what I was doing at the time...) and wasn't able to run for some time. Instead I rode my bike - and aggravated an old injury, which meant no exercise at all for a couple more weeks. But I had a free entry to the local half marathon, since I had helped the new race director put together the race website. This race had been my first half, several years before, and I really wanted to run it even though by the time I could run again I had only six weeks to "train". I ran twice or three times a week, and by the time I built up to a long run of 11 miles, and probably an overall weekly mileage of 18mpw, I figured, okay, I can do it! (By way of contrast, when I ran it before I also only ran 2-3x/week but went up to a 15 mile long run, and 22mpw.) Needless to say my vague plans of breaking 2 hours, which would have been a PR by only a minute and a half, were completely derailed by this, but unfortunately I still tried to make the pace, with a result that I walked much of the last three miles, felt miserable at the finish, and of course did not PR.

This year, I started running again in August (well, okay, I did a little walk/run in July), ten weeks before the half marathon. I am up to 31 mpw and think I can safely hit 40mpw before the race, get my LR up to 12 or maybe even 14 miles. This is way better preparation than I had for the 2008 race - it's way better preparation than I had for my first half! It's more than most people do for half marathons! But I look at those numbers and I think, wow, I probably shouldn't be doing this - I'm going to be barely prepared.

Back when I was trying to break 2 hours, I teased myself with fantasies about not just breaking it, but smashing it. I'd run 1:55, maybe even 1:50! After my 3:55 marathon in Baltimore, I allowed myself to imagine a 1:48 - wow, would that ever be amazing! And then the next spring, I trained hard and I ran 1:44, and I never looked back. 1:42 was next, then a stunning (to me) 1:37 - I'd never even dreamed about that kind of number. I started plotting and planning for getting my time under 1:35, but injuries and bad weather have conspired against me so far. Hopefully it will happen some day, in a future race.

But not this one. With no recent fast running or much long running, I'm not going to be racing, just running. I'm trying to get comfortable with the truth that even just breaking 2 hours is not going to be a gimme. If I run at my current easy pace I'll come in well over that mark, a personal worst that will be even slower than the 2008 race, but really, I'm not going to be able to control myself to that extent! I'm thinking that I might just try a "marathon pace" run, that is, watch my heart rate and keep it in the range it is when I run a marathon. That will probably give me something in the 1:52-1:58 range, at this point, which - I guess I'm just going to have to drown my sorrows in beer at the finish!

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 12:04 am (UTC)
melusina: (any champagne dangerousfred)
From: [personal profile] melusina
Happy birthday! And congrats on your long run - that's a major milestone. . .

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 12:08 am (UTC)
aerye: (Default)
From: [personal profile] aerye
You sound good! Good luck with the training!

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 01:39 am (UTC)
mrkinch: vampire Viggo (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrkinch
Go, you! I'm so glad you have this to look forward to.

Also, Happy Birthday! You gave yourself a wonderful gift.:)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 02:48 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Happy birthday from C. Reider / vuzh @ LJ.

Proving yourself to yourself after an injury is quite satisfying.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 05:20 am (UTC)
blnchflr: Captain America Civil War (runner!)
From: [personal profile] blnchflr
Argh, I ache for you when reading about your injury - sounds like you're coming back from it, though I saw you mention in another post that it still hurt to run, which worried me.

I hope you can have a good race, just enjoying going the distance again, and the scenery and beer - good luck :o)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 05:55 am (UTC)
ext_794226: (Default)
From: [identity profile]
Happy Birthday!
Maybe it won't be a PR, but it will be a great run with lots of fun people and a chance to drink beer at the end. These races help us get stronger and appreciate when we can be back where we want to be.
Let the rebuilding commence!!!

BTW...I would love to come run a net downhill with you. Any time. :)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-30 08:02 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I might need a pair of roller skates to go with that downhill. :)
-Raina (open id issues :p )

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 07:47 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] whatistigerbalm
I still think you're built of awesomebricks, so there.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 01:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I totally relate to this post. I ran a half marathon just 10 weeks after my return to running post stress fracture and my mileage was way lower than most half marathons. And probably not even as high as yours. I think you will surprise yourself with your time-- you seem to have the right attitude and approach. Happy Birthday and it's great to see you running strong!

(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-20 03:04 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Happy Birthday Ilana - so glad to hear you are back to running!


(no subject)

Date: 2011-09-22 12:19 pm (UTC)
mergatrude: a hermit crab peering from it's shell with the text "lurker" (Default)
From: [personal profile] mergatrude
Happy birthday wishes (for four days ago)! May all your running dreams come true!


ilanarama: me, The Other Half, Moab UT 2009 (Default)

August 2017

131415 16171819
20212223 242526

My running PRs:

5K: 21:03 (downhill) 21:43 (loop)
10K: 43:06 (downhill)
10M: 1:12:59
13.1M: 1:35:55
26.2M: 3:23:31

You can reach me by email at heyheyilana @


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