Month: April 2013

Recovery…

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the dreaded ice bath

Do you remember the first race you ran when you crossed the finish line sore already, giving the run ALL YOU HAD. You couldn’t sit on the toilet that night and took the elevator to your second floor office. It hurt, bad. You wondered if you would EVER be able to will your muscle fibers to fire quicker than a hobble ever again. The pride you felt pulled you back to training and back to the starting line of a race the same distance. This time again giving it all you had. It hurt the same but not for as long and so you pushed yourself to new distances, new PRs all the while training your body not just to run but to recover!

Runners are always talking about recovery from compression garments to ice baths. Nasty tasting protein drinks to swearing by a post run beer instead (my personal practice). What we seem to forget is how fast we recover from various distances is also a testament of our fitness level and preparation. Remember to not all positive training gains can be seen on your Garmin. Just something to think about…

Tighten those laces, LETS RUN! 

-Rachel- 

#wrtdouble 2 1/2s in 2 days!

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A while back I had signed up for the Trailbreaker 1/2 marathon because it was cheap ($35), close to home, and on a day I was slotted to run 13 miles anyways. So I was going to go, attempt to PR since my last PR was at an indoor 1/2 making me feel like somehow it didn’t “count” and call it a day. Before I knew it there was tons of chatter on Twitter about the Badgerland Striders South Shore 1/2 marathon. This race was only $14, close to home and my kids were already set up to be at Grandmas so I pulled the trigger and signed up. Instant nerves! Am I really going to run 2 1/2s in ONE weekend?!?! While attending a wedding in-between?!?! It WOULD qualify me for Half Fanatics membership so I settled on a goal of sub 2:30ing both and calling it a weekend.

Friday night I settled in for some “carbo-loading”. Since I have been preparing for my long runs so diligently not at all. I figured “why start now”. I DID stick with my two craft beers night before a race rule, however. and also ate this:

Pulled Pork Nachos
Pulled Pork Nachos

Saturday April 6th 2013: Trailbreaker 1/2 Marathon, Waukesha, WI.

My goal was to just relax during this run and run by feel. It was nice to have a warm building to wait around in since it was windy and about 30* out. I met up with my Ragnar teammate Heather and we wandered out to the start line about 20 minutes before gun time.

"Hey Heather you're on the blog!"
“Hey Heather you’re on the blog!”
Very modest beginings
Very modest beginnings

This race went GREAT! I stayed relaxed and didn’t obsess over my time. There aren’t a lot of spectators on this course but all of the volunteers were awesome. I pulled into mile 6 and had to look at my watch. I had made it in just an hour. I knew a PR was possible but had to pull back and remember this wasn’t about a PR, you have to do this AGAIN tomorrow! Around mile 9 I ran into a guy who I have done some group runs with and use to come into the running store I worked at, Charles. We got to chatting and he pulled me WAY out of my comfort zone but I still felt good enough to talk so I went with it. He bonked at mile 11 and told me to “go for it.” so I did. I bonked a bit at mile 12 but pushed through to a shiny NEW PR of 2:10:08!

Recovery started right away!
Recovery started right away!

I got my post race beer and a few snacks and saw Charles again, thanking him with a cheers. I had to get going pretty quick because I had a wedding to attend at 3pm!! I pulled on my compression socks and got on the road. Once I got home I foam rolled with a little help:

Recovery Buddies
Recovery Buddies

Showered, and got ready for the quickest wedding ever. It was seriously 15 minutes! Congrats again to Ashley and Drew! After the ceremony a bunch of us headed to the Delafield Brewhaus for dinner where I had to continue to carbo load but all I could eat there was a salad (allergy issues) so I settled for this:

Check-in to ALL the beers!
Check-in to ALL the beers!

After a wild night of dancing, a few more beers, doughnuts and nachos at the reception (one of the best receptions I’ve EVER been to!) It was time to head home. Bed by 1am, slept like crap, up by 7am to get ready and run 13.1 MORE miles.

Sunday, April 7th 2013: South Shore 1/2 Marathon, Milwaukee,WI

I awoke to another grey, windy, cold morning. There was some relief in knowing my running buddy/Ragnar teammate was sticking this one out with me and again having a warm place to hang pre-race!

Pre-Race. trying to get psyched!
Pre-Race. trying to get psyched!
Lots of people about to run this race.
Lots of people about to run this race.

I was sore, but not unbearably so at the start but excited to run parts of the Oak Leaf Trail I hadn’t previously. I had heard the course was “hilly but nothing to be afraid of” and honestly I was happy not knowing what lay ahead. I ended up LOVING the course even the hills, mud and close quarters. Around mile 4 we got on pace with 2 guys running ahead of us and ran behind them until mile 11. It was fun to listen to their conversation and have some blocking to the wind.

Clouds started to break around the end of the race.
Clouds started to break around the end of the race.

Milwaukee Skyline. This pic. doesn't do it justice.

Milwaukee Skyline. This pic. doesn’t do it justice.

After cursing like a sailor up the last couple of hills we made it clocking a 2:17:xx (official results aren’t up at this posting) finish. I am SUPER happy with that after PRing the day before, hills and wind.

"Beer and your kids, that's like your life" - Running Buddy's g/f
“Beer and your kids, that’s like your life” – Running Buddy’s g/f

I was bummed they were out of Riverwest Stien but I got my post race beer, Coors Light – YUCK! I knew I had better post race beer at home so after another compression sock pull on I headed there. For this:

2 Beers for 2 races!
2 Beers for 2 races!

First I made it into a “Black and Tan” as suggested then drank the second half of each separately. Pretty great way to end a great weekend of running. I promptly applied to be a Half Fanatic and was accepted!! #3937 Level: Jupiter!

Part of the reason the South Shore is so cheap is because you don’t get a medal at the end just kind of crappy, too big for my hands, gloves. The whole race we were joking about making the gloves into a medal so after the above beers is sounded like an EVEN better idea! So here is my undated medal wall:

Conversation starters
Conversation starters

It was a crazy weekend and I am glad I did it! I feel SO prepared for Ragnar Chicago Ultra that I can only imagine what 2 more months will bring!!

Milwaukee Women Runners: Remember our first group run in THIS Saturday it is free and you will have a chance to win an entry in the Summerfest Rock ‘n Sole Run! For more info and to register please click HERE!

Tighten those laces – LETS RUN!

-Rachel-