Sunday, July 17, 2016

The Test

My biggest struggle this year has been balancing two kids, multiple therapy and doctors appointments, a demanding full-time job and my running. As I wrote out my LT100 training plan I knew this week would be the ultimate test. It had every possibility of being a bagel week. And 6 weeks ago I honestly might have logged 20-30 miles. 

I went in with the mindset to get miles in whenever and wherever I could...early mornings, late nights, lunches, pushing strollers whatever it took. One day at a time. I barely made it through Monday and Tuesday's appointments with only a handful of miles. Wednesday I made up for it with some big running. And then as I loaded the kids into their car seats and turned the car on to head home after school I heard the unmistakable sound of a puking baby. I dashed around the cart to find Robert, the car seat and a good amount of my car covered in raspberries and olives. Really? It had to be the day they served raspberries! My second thought was seriously? The week that was already testing every mental aspect of my being? Naturally the stomach big lasted a full 72 hours which meant a lot of treadmill and stroller running. And very little sleep...Wednesday night up every hour to push fluids, Thursday night every 2 hours. 

Friday Rob wasn't puking so I dropped him off at school with the plan of getting as many miles as I could before he got too fussy for school. That might be some sort of new record for me 21 miles, 3150'of very in 3:02...didn't do much for time on feet but I kept telling myself it was Outward Bound to Twin, the lap at FJ was practice for going around Turquiose...any tricks I could play on myself to try to believe this was really a quality long run. An then as if the week hadn't already been long enough I got to pack up and head for the hospital for another sleep study with James. If you e never had the joy of experiencing a sleep study let me tell one actually sleeps! Long story short it literally took about 5 hours to get J all hooked up. We could only do a few probes at a time to keep him asleep-ish and from pulling the probes off. Around 2:00 I was so exhausted I could t stay awake any more and didn't notice them come back in to hook up the last probes. Thankfully I'm well adapted to functioning on 3-4 hours of sleep. So we were released at 6:15 am, drove home, picked up celebratory donuts, because we survived the week, ate most of the donuts and then took the boys out on a stroller run...because that's just the way we roll! 

I didn't quite hit my numbers for the week but still managed nearly 70 miles and 12k I'm vert! Basically that means I didn't just survive I nailed that test! I know too that mentally to get through this week...and log as many miles as I have on the neighborhood hill, yes the neighbors all officially think I've lost my mind, that this week was more than just the miles ran. Mentally I'm ready for Leadville! I'm ready for a 25-30 hour all-inclusive spa vacation! Two more weeks of big mileage and heavy training and then we start winding down. One day at a time...14 more days...

Sunday, July 10, 2016


Over the last couple weeks I've made
a huge commitment to get myself in the best shape possible for Leadville. But I know it's not just about logging miles in the mountains. If I'm going to build up this quickly and stay healthy my legs need to be bombproof. Now let's not go getting excited that I might have stepped foot in a gym...or even lifted a weight for that matter. Instead I've put together a series of pilates-based exercises to strengthen my core, back, arms and mostly my legs. So far I've stuck with it the past couple weeks and am starting to see more definition in my legs. I'm just hoping it helps. 

As for running I've managed another week of hard training and making running a real priority. This week I hit 80 miles and 11k feet of vertical. My long run wasn't quite as long as I had hoped due to thunderstorms that moved in before I was done. I could have gone for more vert there as well, but instead I balanced it with a super runnable hill at Three Sisters. So while it wasn't the steepest hill, aside from Hope and Powerlines Leadville is super runnable, so I need to be prepared. And I ran this run hard. 

So another week of hard training done. I'm still second guessing everything wondering if I'm doing enough, running enough, strength training enough, hiking and climbing enough, enough long runs, It seems I constantly see posts of everyone else doing 30+ mile long runs every weekend, hiking 14ers non-stop, 3 hour weekday in my head I still continue to wonder am I doing enough. That damn comparison monster is always there. I just have to trust it. I've done this before I know what works for me. And I'm training harder than I have before. So time to trust it. That's all I can do at this point. 

The other thing is I'm really having fun! When I was debating running this year Sandra said to me that she was afraid she was losing me, that I was losing me. And stepping up my training I think she was right. All my running before seemed to be centered around the kids, what time I had to get them, how much it would take away from them, whatever they had going on. I've tried to focus more on what runs I need. And really I haven't given up anything for the boys, I've just mentally told myself my runs are a priority. Now the house may look like a disaster most days and dinners aren't quite as nice as they have been, but the house is clean enough and there is food on the table. Pretty sure that's all that really counts anyways right? And the boys seem to be doing all right...

Monday, July 4, 2016

Decision 2016

Contrary to popular belief this was actually probably the biggest decision I had to make this year. And I did nothing short of agonize over it. I got my LT100 coin on Saturday and had until 3pm Wednesday to decide. It took nearly every minute to figure out if I was going to race in 2016 or defer to 2017. 

The smart decision would be to defer. I'm not in peak shape, I'm barely sleeping which is not lending itself to recovery and there is no telling if I can actually change any of that in the couple months before race day. 2017 I'd be ready to have an amazing race, I'd be perfectly trained, no need for pumping, most likely sleeping more...the list goes on. 

But there's always that what if...what if could be a million things. My heart said you don't know what will happen now. Sometimes there is no second chance, sometimes this is the only chance you get -Gordy Ansleigh rang through my head. 

My heart is 0-2 in 100s...but you never know if you don't try. Tomorrow isn't guaranteed and so I clicked back, back, back on my registration, threw caution to the wind and once again decided to follow my heart. Third times a charm right? 

Despite feeling rushed to train I knew I needed to spend the week after the race recovering. So I ran easy and came up with a game plan to train for the rest of the summer. It's one day at a time and each day I'm making my runs a huge priority. The house will probably be a bit of a disaster, I'm hoping for 4 showers a week and dinner will probably be a rotation of grilled chicken salads and pasta with meat sauce since I can prep all of those ahead of time. 

This past week I nailed my training with almost 70 miles and over 14,000 ft of vert. I'm not a high mileage runner so for me that's a pretty high mileage week. Dan and I also got in a super fun long run at Golden Gate SP. I felt great! My legs were there, no stomach issues, my nutrition was on point and even after I wasn't sore or tired. I could easily have gone longer. It was a huge confidence boost for sure. So one day at a time for a couple more weeks and hopefully I'll be at least in sight of that peak 100 shape.