Running: It's actually more expensive than therapy
The Joy of Sign Up
Signing up for races sure is fun. You get caught up in the excitement and even forget how much training you are going to need.
So you've made it to the race and line up nervously at the starting line. As soon as the gun goes off you do too. You also conveniently forget any pacing strategy you may or may not have come up with before.
After the first mile or two that fast start has caught up to you. This is when pain starts to kick in and the pre-race jitters wear off. You start to feel sluggish and tired while everyone else around you seems to be killing it.
The final sprint
No matter how tired you are seeing the finish line near always makes you sprint towards it. The end is near and you made it. You rest a while then feel like you are ready to sign up for your next race!
Since I began training with the Hanson's Marathon Method Plan using the 5k specific model, I have not only gained speed but have found a new appreciate for running again. There are so many aspects of this plan that I love and wanted to share my favorites.
1. The 16 miler long run- You're probably thinking why in the world would a 5k specific plan have such a long run in there? The long runs in this plan range from 12-16 miles. This scares a lot of people off however, all the long runs are at a slower, manageable pace. The sense of accomplishment alone after such a workout is enough to keep coming back for more. If you want to run faster, you have to run more.
2. The recovery workouts- A lot of the plan calls for "recovery running at an easy pace." You will not only get used to running on tired legs from previous faster workouts, but you will also look forward to "resting" your body on these easy days.
3. The overall mileage-The mileage ranges from 40-60 miles a week depending on how close it is to race day. This can sound scary at first, but keep in mind most of this running is at easy paces. A lot of the mileage also comes from warm-up/cool downs before and after speed work.
4. The speed work/tempo runs- The plan calls for specific speed work times which you know is essential to gaining 5k speed. It's definitely not at a crazy pace, so you still feel like you are in control of it. The calculators they provide are excellent and accurate tools in helping you find your paces.
5. The variety of the workouts- The workouts never get boring because of the variety. One week for speed work you may be running hills while the next could be something like 400M sprints. It all helps to keep your mind fresh.
Overall, this is an excellent plan for me and my running goals. So far I would seriously recommend to to any runner looking to take their training to the next level.
Sunday 04/29/2018 was the 6th annual Margaritas & Manure 12k Trail Race, Half Marathon, and 50k Ultra Marathon in Osteen, FL. Why is it called the Margaritas and Manure race? Well, the manure part comes from all the cows along the trail (unfortunately I did not see any cows but I did see evidence of their existence) while the margarita part comes from the drinks they serve after the race. It's a cool concept/theme for a race.
I ran the 12k (7.5 miles approximately) this year. Despite my love for trail races, this would be the furthest distance I've run in one. I did set a race goal of under an hour (which would be an average pace of under 8 minutes) based on last year's results because I was unsure how technical or wet the course would be. I figured under good conditions this was an appropriate pace.
We started our event at 8:30 am. I liked the open area we ran into at the start because it helped everyone spread out into our paces. Trail races were you get boxed in at the start are the absolute worst because there's basically no way to recover. I made sure to run faster in the flat areas in order to gain a bit for the more technical part later on.
I ran as fast as I could without letting my fear of falling get to me. I think during trail races that's what holds me back mentally. I know I can run faster but fear tends to get to me. I did fall twice when my foot got caught up on some roots (nothing major though just a few minor scratches). I made sure to wear long pants for that reason.
The course was absolutely beautiful and not too technical either. We crossed a stream of about knee deep water, (they even warned us ahead of time) and that was the extent of how wet we got. I have to say the course was very well marked. They had arrows directing us along the right path. As someone who is directionally challenged, this was the most helpful. I did not feel the need to stop at the aid stations but they were very well stocked with waters, electrolyte drinks, pb&j sandwiches, cookies, candies, etc. This was mostly for the ultra runners but still very much appreciated. The volunteers were also friendly and helpful to direct us to the right path.
My watch beep at the end of the 7th mile and I thought I only had a little while to go when I still had another half a mile to run in the sand. I did maintain my footing here despite a few close calls.I only had checked my watch a few times during the race so I was not sure what to expect. I really felt like I was running slowly through quicksand haha. I saw the finishing clock was still under an hour and boy was I happy! I got my finisher medal and exchanged my shoe tag for a yummy margarita in a custom mason jar we got to keep. This race was so much fun! I have to run this next year for sure.
I felt like I did what I could at this race. I reached my time goal and felt pretty good after. I wasn't out of breath or anything. Trail races are so different for me it's more of a mental battle than physical. I need to push myself mentally harder and overcome my fears. It's bittersweet knowing you have so much more in the tank but can't overcome mental blocks. Now it's time for taking the summer off from races (not really 100% my choice there's not too many Florida summer races) and focus on my Hanson's Training plan to get faster (much faster) for the fall races.
Overall 8 out of 96
2nd Overall Female