Monday, September 1, 2014

August Recap: Insanity

August 2014 is going down in the record books as my highest mileage month ever, by a large margin. It's been epic. It's been intimidating. It's been confidence-building and tiring and wonderful. Here's August, by the numbers:

Miles ran: 204. Yes. TWO HUNDRED FOUR.

# Runs: 20, including an 18-miler, a 20, and 2 22-milers, plus 2 sets of Yassos that went amazingly well, a ton of easy runs, 2 pace runs and 1 tempo run.
BoB posted this on FB and I thought it was too funny not to pass along!
Favorite run: It's always hard to choose, but I think the first set of Yassos, early in the month. They felt much easier than I anticipated, and that built confidence for race day.

Other notable runs: A 9 mile tempo run about 2 weeks ago was certainly notable! We started in the pitch black--as in, so dark I felt like I should have brought a head lamp. As the sun was rising, we saw movement to the right of the path, and quickly realized it was a skunk, then 2 more. We both jumped to the other side of the path (maybe 3 feet?) and hurried up, but they were hissing at us and watching us. I was sure we were going to get sprayed, but luckily they kept to just hissing at us. Then of course every tiny motion in my peripheral vision for the next 36 hours was a suspected skunk. Also, the last 1.5 miles were in the rain. Because...why not?
What these morning runs in the mountains look like. My friend Tessa took this.
Other workouts: Maybe I should just stop posting this section at all.....(I swear I'm gonna do yoga at some point!)

Training updates: While I've been running 100+ mile months back-to-back for a while (since March) Running a 200-mile month taught me a few new things:
  • Managing electrolytes. How did I learn this? For years, at the end of a long run, my face would be gritty with salt, gritty enough to self-exfoliate practically. Recently I switched up my fueling routine so that I Gu every 6 miles I plop a Gu Brew electrolyte tablet into my water bottle every 9 miles. And just like that, the grit stopped. Also, my stomach isn't getting upset from ingesting too much sugar any more. It's like magic. I balanced my electrolyte intake.
  • I can do this: I always feel funny saying this, but it's true--even though I've been a runner since I was 15 and I've been doing enduring running since 2007, I still get intimidated sometimes. This past month, looking at 2 50-mile weeks, a new threshold for me for sure, was intimidating! And even though I love (love!) going fast, I still get intimidated sometimes by speed work. And you know what, I can do this. I DID do this. I AM DOING THIS. 
  •  I need to actually eat before a long run: I've realized that half a bagel with jam is a good call. Otherwise, I spent at least 10 miles thinking about food. 
  • When I run mileage like this, I need more sleep. TrainingPerks told me this a while ago, but I had to see it first hand to believe it. 
House projects completed: Our office is this close to being finished (and should have been finished weeks ago...), but alas not yet. My Mom and I made curtains for some of the windows in the living room (the last of the pink is gone! Hooray!), but the drapes are yet to come. 

Other lovely things from life: We had a One Year Party to celebrate the first year we've been here in Utah. We had a really nice, low-key evening with the crew that helped get us here, and people we've met since. 
My selfie from the end of the night
Also, the blackberry harvest is nearly complete, and the grapes are in full force. I've been making jam and jelly, and Mr. Joanna is going to can applesauce this week. Like I've said many times before, we never intended to become farmers, but homesteading is a beautiful lifestyle.

Photo: And back in Utah, the blackberry harvest begins.
Berries from the yard
We've also been getting into more local events here, and have more lined up over the coming weeks. The longer we're here, the more I love it.

So, my friends, I am three weeks until race day, and I'm anxious and excited! The taper is on (although I'm still running 45 miles this week), my pace bands are on their way, and we're in the final stretch. Stay tuned while I count down!

No comments: