With the exception of Tuesday’s run, training went well last week leading up to my first big race of the fall racing season. When I got off of the sand and onto asphalt again, I felt like I was flying!
Since we were still at the beach and didn’t want to drive into town, Bill and I ran 6 miles during low tide on the beach heading north from our house. Low tide was around 1:30 PM so we headed out around 12:30. The weather was still quite good, and a decent breeze kept us pretty comfortable. We completed our run at a 9:45 average pace.
We drove home from dinner and taking sunset pictures over the Sound in the dark on Monday evening during high tide, and had to hug the dunes to keep from driving in the water. I was more than a little freaked out! We decided to get up and take a walk during high tide on Tuesday morning just to see how the tide compared to the night before during the super moon. We walked for 2 miles at a leisurely pace – I’m talking letting your dog stop to sniff a hydrant every ten steps sort of pace…
We walked at a leisurely pace until I got hit by a wave, that is! I had crouched down and taken the above photo, and stayed down to catch the next wave that would hopefully slap up over the little sand shelf. Well, it came in bigger than I expected and slapped me on the side of the head! Instead of getting a great picture of the wave, I jerked upright and took the following picture! HaHa! My pace picked up big time as I stomped back home to get the sand off of my face and out of my hair!
Later in the afternoon Bill and I ran 6 miles on beach during low tide. A front was moving in and bringing forceful winds from the south with it. My run was miserable as I ran directly into the wind at an average 12:39 pace. Heading back home and with the wind to my back, I maintained a 10:07 pace. Two ambulances went screaming by, and I wondered if they were coming to get me since I looked like I was ready to collapse!
We drove home on Wednesday which meant a morning of vacuuming, dusting, scrubbing the bathrooms and kitchen, cleaning out the refrigerator, and loading up the car. After a week of near perfect weather with low humidity, Bill braved the increasing temperature and sweltering humidity while putting the hurricane shutter back on the house. He looked like he’d run a marathon when he came back inside!
No one from my MRTT group was around on Thursday morning, so I slept in a little and got up too late for my usual 6 mile tempo run. I ran 4 miles (9:36 pace) alone on trails behind house before my first client showed up.
An hour later I ran/walked 3 miles with my client at a 12:52 pace. I was super excited to see her improve on her time so much in just a few weeks. She is doing so well, and it makes me so happy to see her try so hard!
At noon, I had some spare time so I headed back out to run 2 miles at a 9:05 pace. Even though I’m not worried about being prepared for Ragnar, it makes me feel better to get a few two-a-days in. Who am I kidding? I couldn’t stand that I hadn’t run 6 miles earlier as planned, so I had to get those 2 miles in!
Since we were racing on Sunday, I wanted to take Saturday off and decided to run on Friday, my usual rest day. When I sent the Cruiser email out saying that I wouldn’t be out on Saturday morning for the group run, Jerome replied that he was heading out on Friday for a mid-day run. We met at a local park and ran 8 miles an 8:33 pace. It sure didn’t hurt that it was 74° at noon! As Jerome put it, “It would be a runner’s sin not to run on such a gorgeous day!”
On Saturday I didn’t set my alarm so I could sleep in and rest before my big race on Sunday, but I woke up at 7 AM and got up anyway. I pretty much relaxed most of the day, except for going to the running store to pick up my race packet, and shopping for groceries. For dinner I broiled salmon, made a salad, and roasted homemade sweet potato fries (my friend Mary turned me on to them as a pre-race dinner staple). I was in bed by 9 PM, and started reading Bart Yasso’s My Life On The Run to get myself psyched!
I didn’t sleep very well, had weird dreams, woke up with an upset stomach; and realized that it was just a case of pre-race jitters. I’d trained hard for this race, and had my expectations set high even though I hadn’t verbalized them with anyone.
Bill and I got up bright and early on Sunday morning and drove to Leesburg for the Leesburg 20K, and I nailed it! I felt challenged, but comfortable running a 1:45:30 (8:30 pace), and won my age group.
I have to say I’m very pleased with where I stand right now for the fall. DC Ragnar is up next in mid-September, and my fall goal race is the Hokie Half Marathon in mid-October.
Total weekly workouts:
Running – 38.4 miles
Run/walk – 3 miles
Walking – 2 miles
Lifting – 1 hour
- Runners, do you have a fall race that you are targeting as your focal race?
- If so, how is your training coming along?
- Who raced this weekend?