Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Jenn is an idiot, my long run instead of speedwork, and more rambling thoughts.....

So, I finally broke down and ordered a water belt! Two of my heros, Amanda and Ana Maria both wear one and therefore these are like a Louis Vuitton in the running world and you are a BADASS runner if you wear one (even if your husband makes fun of you...) Anyway, I took it out of the box this morning and couldn't figure out what this stupid plastic contraption was on the side so I texted Amanda this picture with the message "WTF is this plastic thing for. I threw away the tag and now its just bugging me" She kindly informed me that it is what they use to hang it up in the store.....What a moron....


Moving on....

So, I've been giving a lot of thought to my training lately, what it is that I actually want to be accomplishing here and at what price....I've read a hundred books-retained very little-ha!. (I did this in college too and had great grades but remember nothing) My point being, I know the experts know what they're talking about but sometimes I'm just not sure if Jenn has it in her to follow the experts.....

People who have followed me for a long time know that I prefer the distance and the miles to the speed. When I first started running and even training for my first marathon, I often didn't even wear a watch, just ran and then ran some more. I LOVED running, very little stress for me. If anything, a major stress reliever! Speedwork was primarily a fartlek of some sort, not all that much organized and some tempo running-still primarily unorganized. I didn't fly by the seat of my pants necessarily as I ran relatively hard and I put in the miles. I used a SmartCoach plan as a guide but when I tried, I even struggled to hit the speed paces for a 3:40 marathon. Somehow I ran a 3:25. I was EXCITED for my long runs and this was the HIGHLIGHT of training for me.

My Boston training I got more speed specific and although I still didn't hit a lot of the paces, I was more regular with my attempts. I would still constantly alter the plan and do what I wanted to do instead of what the plan said but that's what kept running "fun" for me. I made a 7 minute improvement so increasing the speed somewhat definitely had it's benefits.

Anyway, this ramble kind of has a point. Right now my A goal is a marathon in 5 and a half weeks. I need to ensure that I get to that starting line feeling like I'm the SHIT and fully capable of smokin' out a great marathon. On my plan today was speed. I didn't want to do it, I didn't feel confident about it, I DREADED it. Now, I know there are up and down days of training but it seems lately in all this structure I've been having more down days. I feel like the passion of just running to run is getting lost somewhere. Of course, I want to get better but sometimes even though I KNOW I'm getting better, I just feel defeated....Logic would say I have only a little over 3 weeks until taper and to just stick with the plan. Jenn says NO.

I drove up to the port of entry with my good friend this morning for a class field trip for Reese. She left me there and I ran home.....


I fully fueled this run (3 gels) and my elapsed time was actually almost 4 minutes longer than what it shows here because of a stop to refill water bottles and an emergency cornfield bathroom break. Even so, my pace was steady steady and this after a 20 mile on Saturday and then a 10 mile in 1:18. I am feeling VERY confident about this. Much more confident than if I had whipped out the speedwork the plan called for. No, it was not easy pace effort, more like hard effort trial marathon pace and I was tired but it's what I needed today.

I've made a few decisions. I'm not going to follow my plan for the next 3 weeks. I'm going to do what feels good to me. I will NOT be racing a half marathon. I don't want to cut my miles and I don't want to feel defeated. I'm a wimp maybe but I know I can't deal with a poor performance in it. I will run the race and likely have some sort of gameplan but I won't taper and I'm training through it. I WILL however be racing a 10K the following weekend. I'm going to go top heavy early in the week and rest a little before the race and hopefully be able to knock that one off my sidebar!!

And now for the whole post disclaimer!! I will change my mind on all of this tomorrow and delete this post!!!

Happy Tuesday!

20 comments:

XLMIC said...

O, man... that plastic thingy had me laughing so hard! I think your rambling thoughts are good :) I don't want to expound on that cuz I'll sound like an idiot... and I'm NOT! You do YOUR run thang, Jenn... and you'll be fast and happy :)

Running and living said...

Love this, Jenn. Yes, all experts know what works, but you know what works for you! That run is F#$$$$%X$X$X$X$X$X$$X awesome, Jenn! It got ME so excited for your marathon, like really excited, heart rate up and everything! I will be racing the same day and thinking about your marathon, LOL:)
I love your confidence and doing what works for you and changing your mind, etc. Matt F wrote a book RUN: The method of running by feel and he makes a great point about going with your instinct, changing your plan, etc. You would love the book!
And still laughing about the tag thing and your husband making fun of you with the fuel belt. Mine does, too!

Amanda@runninghood said...

oh wow Jenn! You've hit it out of the ball park with this post girl! This is some powerful stuff and inspirational for me for sure! This run of yours.....Good Grief! HOly smokes girl...I can't wait to see what you will do in your marathon. SEriously! I love that you are reflecting on these things and just deciding to go with what works for Jenn! I think this is what it truly comes down to when you already know you can run and run well. This book AM talks about...sounds awesome. Like I mentioned a bit to you this week, I'm going to make my own plan up for the next couple weeks too...in a different place than you since I'm just hoping I'll be running strong again...my marathon is in 3.5 weeks so that means the next 2 weeks has to count. Not sure my exact plan but I do know that I won't be following the one I was on.

Too freaking funny about that text today Jenn! YOu crack me up. I seriously thought you were just being a smart ass. :) I'll be laughing about this one for awhile. I love my water belt. Waylon runs with one too when we go on super long runs.

Mon Amour said...

I hate doing speed work too. Instead I just like to pick random trees or objects and sprint until then

The Hungry Runner Girl said...

YOU ARE NOT BEING AN IDIOT!!! You are doing what is best for YOU and what YOU love to do. I seriously am right there with you...my next training cycle I am all about distance because I would DREAD speedwork and hate every second of it. Good call on not racing the 1/2.......You are amazing and you are going to PR your marathon I just know it. Keep being drop dead gorgeous (35 years old is totally your best year, your son is brilliant)!!! LOVE YOU!!!

Caroline said...

ahhhhhhh ahhhhh ahhhhh!!!
I could not finish reading pass the pic....my belly hurts from laughing too much. this is hilarious!!!!! ok will go read the rest now

Jennifer Cotter said...

Wow! With that run, I don't see how you possibly even NEED speed work at this point. You're going to have an awesome marathon! As for the water belt plastic thingy....totally something I would do. :)

Happy Runner Girl said...

WOW! Great post! I feel like training takes away my love of running soo much and I hate that! I can do my long runs and 1 speed workout a week and that's about it...my mind and body cant seem to do the tempo and pace runs etc. I LOVE trying to get the love back and when I have a good run, like this morning, I remember why I do this. I also love the feeling of a great race. Thanks for the post. After my half on Sunday I am going to get back to my love of running.

lindsay said...

yeah you, AM and amanda are beasts. in a beautiful, strong, feminine way of course.

i'd like to think my *youthful* mind would at least cut off the hang tag ;) it's ok, everyone (max) loved you better when you were 35 anyway... :-p

Britt said...

I love that you stick with what makes you feel good. Sure speedwork is great, but feeling mentally strong, prepared, and confident is important too. I think you made a good choice knowing what works for you! And dang, that was an awesome 18 miler. Your legs must have been smokin!

Shawn said...

I think I mentioned this before....(IN)SANE?

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

hahahaha! How sweet of Amanda to politely inform you!! :)

YOu are such a speed demon...very consistent run wow! You really know your abilities and the best training for YOU!

Nicole Wagner said...

OH my gosh...this was one of the BEST ...seriously THE.BEST. posts I have read in a Looooooong time.
first off:
I laughed out loud with my hand over my mouth when I looked at the picture of the hanger STILL.ON.THE.BELT. LMAO! you are hysterical!!! I can only imagine what Amanda was thinking! you are sooooooooooooooooooooo funny!.

second: I just about died when I read the last line in your post about changing your mind tomorrow ? LOL gosh...I felt like I could SO relate to that! I seem to be able to convince myself of 2 completely opposing ideas all the time! i'm an idiot.
thanks for the laugh and the smile. you are going to kick A** on your marathon darlin'. and that run was AWESOME!

Jill said...

I just took a Tylenol PM and it's kicking in...I am so glad my last thoughts before I drift off are of the plastic thing on your water bottle. You are the best!

Ok, that's all I could read as nothing else was even remotely entering my brain cavity so I will close and re-read the other juicy stuff tomorrow.

You be awesome girl :).

Julie D. said...

I love this, Jenn! Such a great reminder to go with your gut. The 'perfect' plan is never perfect...and sometimes our best bet is to go with what works for us individually. I think this post has changed my perspective on training plans completely. I'll never feel guilty going 'off plan' again!...if Jenn can do it...I can!...right? LOL. You completely knocked it out of the park with that run. so inspiring. Now, the water bottle thing...I would have died laughing if you actually went on a run with that thing still on. absolutely hilarious!! Something I would do. :)

Quinton J said...

bahahaha...and YOU make fun of ME because of my skating grace and poise? I say you leave the thing on and use it for hanging a little flag that says "I'm A Knucklehead"

Aron said...

HOLY WOW what an awesome long run!!!

I used to wear a fuel belt but just can't anymore! I like my handheld now :)

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

totally hilarious! Love it! Which water belt did you get. I have a Camelbak waste belt, a cheapo that holds a bottle of water, and I just bought a Camelbak backpack this wk for more capacity. I use different ones, for different mileage.

I'm with ya on the retention issues. It's BAD! I've even rent movies over again. I start watching and somewhere along the way, I realize I've already watched it. It's ok, I watch it again. HA!

I totally agree, keep it fun and motivating for YOU! I LOVE the speed work, and hill work. I hate tempo runs. I ran a tempo today and almost DIED!

Your recent plans have definitely been working for you. I would say stick with it until it's not working any longer. Go Jenn!

Small Town Runner said...

Finally able to get in here!

That tag snafu & text- very classy. So.. having a prior job in retail might help out with the product piece ID. I would love to adopt you as another blonde friend. Can I? :)

The run...all I can say is AMAZING. I would not worry a bit about anything you are doing these days, Jenn. It kinda reminds me of a podcast I herd with Ryan hall where he was asked how he knew he was ready to run a marathon. He replied that it was after he had done a long run with 12 miles of tempo. His tempo pace? His marathon pace....
Glad that what you enjoy is what is WORKING for you. You will have a strong race!! Looking forward to it.

Small Town Runner said...

bwahaha...herd/heard !