Bodies tell us so much. And those of us who like to pretend we’re Cheetahs, Kenyans, or small monkeys on bicycles are great at ignoring our screaming limbs and brains.
Yesterday should have been a rest day for me. But I couldn’t help myself. I beat myself up for not doing enough strength work recently, so I headed in for a weights session. Afterwards, I jumped on the elliptical, and the 60 minute session fast became 10 minutes as my groaning body refused to harden up.
When in doubt, I turn to Runners World, and today, it informed me that some of the signs are an elevated resting heart rate, feeling run down, being cranky, and having a sluggish workout. Based on their charts, I was hitting the ‘warning zone’, so cranky, irritable me sat on the couch and got out one of the OCD anonymous favourite apps – the heart-rate monitor. Normally, my pulse is 58-60bpm. This morning it was 78.
I had a rest day. I hated every bit of it.
I kind of wanted to go cycling, but that didn’t happen either.
But now I’m glad I did. And with a nice big pad thai under my tank top, I’m so very ready to tackle a nice 20km loop with Superwoman tomorrow morning.
Running is amazing, and exercise can be the most rewarding thing in the world. But we can’t do it all the time. Personally, I can’t go more than 6 days without a break. I know others who have to have 2 rest days a week. Others work on an 8 or 10 day cycle. Still others have an extremely light day instead – but they have a designated day that is ridiculously easy.
Christmas is a time to celebrate. I just ran some epic intervals on the treadmill, and I’ll be up early to run with my group.
In between, I get to wake up and eat chocolate. Like any good 5-year-old, I have an advent calendar.
It’s kind of predictable though…
Let the festive running season begin!
I bought a bottle of sparkling water…and the bottle was stripey! …small things…
I am getting a delivery of Bionade. After I posted about my diet coke addiction (which, by the way, I have totally defeated!), they contacted me to offer a sample of their ‘naturally sweetened’ drinks.
I didn’t expect that I would miss the chance to post, but sometimes life is just too much fun!
On Friday, Mr The Rake and I had some friends around for my favourite summer food:
And along with some vodka and gelato, I was beautifully fuelled for the Urban MaxAdventure Race on Saturday morning. Superwoman and I were given a set of cryptic clues and a map of Sydney. The only limitations were that our only means to get around were public transport or our feet. The two of us ran up and down Sydney, collecting markers and completing activities.
After kayaking around Blue’s point we were both rocking wet leggings. Totally worth it.
We made balloon swords at one check point and palmed them off to a small child outside Luna Park. We found ourselves in a photo booth, and we talked strategy on the run.
These fabulous ladies have been an incredible support and I adore them. When you have time, check them out.
Ok, so you know I’m writing mega epic thesis at the moment, but I stop at night time (when I can!) and take some time out. Blog post time is possibly my favourite time of the day. And it’s a BIG week, so I’m feeling particularly reflective.
Getting to Sunday
Over the last year, so much has happened. I decided to run this marathon back in October 2011. It’s been a year of preparation and crazy, and for the first time in a long time I found my mind wandering back today.
I am so incredibly grateful for all the things I’ve learned, the people I’ve met, and the big changes that this has meant for my life.
Start with the basics, right?
The training itself has been a huge learning curve. I had to learn to run.From 5km at a time, I somehow built my way to 18km. And then discovered that that pain in my shins actually mattered…
And so began all the injuries
These are all the bits that got injured over the last 12 months
In fact, looking back, I can see a bit of stubborn in there too. When I had to stop running, I didn’t do the sensible thing and go back to the couch.
Instead, I took up water running, changed my interval training (when I could use my legs again!) and found out that when someone is on your side and wants to help you meet your goal, that’s the person who should be treating you.
Some crazy good (and hard) things happened today. I plan to tell you all about them, but first, Mr The Rake wants to weigh in. This afternoon, I said what I was thinking (filtering is not a strength of mine) and told him the roof of my mouth was sore.
Maybe it’s your brain trying to tunnel its way out.
Right now he’s making spaghetti bolognaise, and it smells amazing. Therefore, he is forgiven. This time.
Thanks for all your tips yesterday! So many great carb ideas (my personal favourites being Jenelle’s get-it-in-ya approach with snakes and gatorade, and a gorgeous recipe for angel-hair pasta (thanks Jill). Francine suggested dates, which are an excellent idea. I’m a bit squeamish about running on dry-fruit fuel, but it sounds as though it’s worth a try.
Point is, carbo loading was not all that much fun, and I’m glad I only have to do it once more!
The 32km run happened. And it happened in 3 hours, 9 mins and 54 secs. The last bit was uphill, and I am horrified at how slowly I went for those last few ks! I had D behind me telling me to push on (more on that in a sec), and it was BRUTAL. I know at about 28km I did not want to run a marathon. Ever.
I finally finished, and slowly, slowly made my way up the stairs of our apartment block.
Mr The Rake was so amused that he took a photo
All I wanted was a diet coke and a shower. Only one option was available.
Want to see something gross? Seriously, if you’re squeamish, don’t look…
My personal favourite is this:
Ok – you can look again!
So, a couple of really, really big thank yous are in order – and they will be even more so post-marathon. But I really do owe a LOT to a few people (and there are more of you who need to be thanked. These are just for today
D is my gym manager, and this morning, she took the running group around the bay so I could do my first of 4 laps. She took them back to the gym, and then out to breakfast – where she didn’t eat a thing.
Then, she came backdown to the bay as I hit my fourth lap (at 21km) (BTW – first ever half marathon today – Dad – it was 2:02 with lap 1 at marathon pace, and lap 2 at training pace).
She ran kilometres 21-30 with me, and even offered to run back to my house.
I was seriously struggling with the hilly end, and she knew it. She offered support and motivation, told me I was going to be fine, and reminded me that every beginner, ever, had felt the same way on that final hill. I was just feeling what those beginners feel – and if they could do it, so could I. When I tried to respond, I was told not to talk, and to keep my breathing regular.
This woman is incredible. Henceforth, D shall be known as superwoman.Because right now, she’s my super-hero.
She even asked me out for lunch, and gave me a lift when I had a blonde moment and forgot that I didn’t have a car…
Brett, the chiro, also needs his own name here. I’m sure he’ll come up with one for himself at some point! Suggestions please guys – this should be good.
Where I know the physio would have taken me out of the training program by this time, Brett has patiently dealt with every single one of my injuries, taught me how to strengthen my body, told me I would be strong enough to run, and has got me back on track.
Brett is magic man, and when I turned up with a swollen knee this week, he just beat the crap out of it, gave me really effective acupuncture, and told me I was fine to do today’s long run. And you know what? The knee is swollen, but not as bad as after last week’s 16km.
There is no way I’d be running as far (or fast) without his help.
Mr The Rake
For putting up with me. You are amazing. Today he went to get the diet coke I was craving (I don’t want to hear it – it was AWESOME) and brought me a protein shake while I stood under the cold water.
That’s love – dealing with sweaty gym clothes, temper tantrums, early nights, long-runs, endless one-way conversations about pacing and interval training…and bringing you protein when you refuse to leave the cool embrace of tiled box.
This post is starting to get way too long, so I’ll leave my extra questions for tomorrow. Watch out! I’m going to quiz you – do your math homework and be ready with some Powerade.
Superwoman’s generosity and support. Hands down.
…Though the old guy who gave me a thumbs up on a busy road at 31km is pretty excellent too.
AND thank you to everyone who has donatedso far! We hit the $2000 target today! There’s no cap though
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I am Kate, a 24 year old Aussie living in Sydney. During the week, I run a business and spend time with my other half – Mr The Rake. In every spare second in between, I run.
I started Run With Kate to track my progress as I worked toward running the Melbourne Marathon.
I ran it. And I kept running. Running has helped me to overcome anxiety and disordered eating. It’s given me new friends, new goals, and a totally new outlook on life. Join me as I share my running adventures (and stupid stories) and share your adventures in return.
The Goal Getter Challenge : At the start of each month, choose a goal to aim for. On the last day of the month, post a photo with your progress to instagram or twitter using the #goalgetter2013 tag. See you there!