Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Where have you been?

There was a time in my life when business travel was the norm. In those times, it seemed that I could carry on the daily activities of life when I was on the road. During the very rare times I do have to travel for business, it is nearly impossible to do anything "extra". Maybe its because I was younger...maybe its because last week was Shark Week on Discovery...but for whatever reason, I just blew through TWO weekends with no recap on how things are going for the Marine Corps Marathon. Only 82 days remain...
Blame this guy for my lack of blogging
So without any further ado...here's Week 14's recap.

The plan called for an 8 mi, 5 mi, 10 mi, 4 mi and 15 mi runs. I was able to start the week off well by hitting the first 8 mile run on a particularly cool morning and finished with an 8:12 pace. I didn't kill myself, but it still felt strenuous. The next day was a recovery 5 miler that I did without a watch (weird I know) it felt very odd for a while, but I got used to running by feel, but honestly how would I really know...I DIDN'T HAVE A WATCH!

For Thursday's 10 miler, my stomach really felt bad, so I skipped it. In fact, I got up, got completely dressed but I could never feel well enough to go outside. So I turned off my Garmin, took off my heart rate monitor and went back to bed. Perhaps one of the most odd mornings I've ever had. I contemplated running on Friday, but I didn't want to wear myself out for the long run. Saturday I drug myself around downtown Greenville dripping sweat for 2 hours. Most of my running group was out of town, so I ran by myself. I learned that misery really does love company.

Pfitzinger wanted 42 miles...I sadly only gave him 28 this week.

Remember that travel I was talking about earlier? On Sunday I left for Boston, MA...the runner's Mecca. I didn't know how I'd enjoy running in Boston, as I've never run around a different city before. I had some friends who gave me some good advice on some routes that were really helpful.

Week 13 Recap
Pfitz called for a 9 mi, 5 mi, 10 mi, 5 mi and a 17 mi run. Pretty aggressive for sure. I started the week off with a 10 mile run around the Charles River.

So however amazing the sights were...the weather was 10X as good. I can't tell you how good it feels to run in the temperatures in the low 60's. You can actually breathe!! I can tell you that coming from the South you really don't expect to enjoy a run "in the city" (any city) but this was just amazing. Great scenery the entire route. The City of Boston has done an amazing job for the runners of the city. You really don't have any reason to be sedentary if you live near the paved trails around Bean-town. Plus the fact that you are literally running in the footsteps of every single great in this sport running down Boyleston..is a humbling experience.

My second run was around Boston Common. It was nice, but it was every stereotype that every southerner has about a big city park. Pigeons that wouldn't move...homeless people and a bit dirty. There were tons of runners out and about and after circling and taking a few detours through the park, I got in my 5 miler.

This is where the wheels fall off.

Any kind of healthy nutrition I typically enjoy at home had gone out the window. Desserts every night, cookies and cupcakes in the break area at work...high fat, low fiber everything. Then I met this guy...

That my friend is 24 ounces of America's Heartland served up by Abe & Louie's. And by the end of the evening, all 24 ounces of it plus mac & cheese, a sweet potato that was larger than my head, mashed potatoes, a little asparagus and a little broccoli...had all found their way to my stomach. Oh and I forgot about the carrot cake. It might be only because of the grace of God that I didn't die eating that much.

I promised myself I wouldn't run the next morning...but 5AM came around and I was awake, and guilt took over my body...I'm in Boston for goodness sakes how can i ever get HERE..

One day....
...without a little sacrifice? So I got up and ran. I said to myself that I'd take it easy. The first three miles felt ok..by mile three I felt like the 24 ounces of steer was having a rodeo in my gut. I finished out the five miles, but I had GI problems the rest of the day. I traveled home on Friday and like most travel nowdays, it went longer than I expected and I got home at midnight. No way I was getting up for a 4AM wakeup call.

I ran instead on Sunday morning with my wife, which was a real treat. I can only count on one hand the amount of times we've ever run together, and although it was hot and humid and just terrible conditions, we had a good time in it together, and I was able to run about 12 miles.

Pfitz wanted 46 this week...I gave him 32. (sigh)

At this point of the process, I think its probably a good assumption to say that I am very "loosely" following his plan which is ok by me. My biggest goal is to arrive in DC prepared and healthy. Considering the last marathon I peaked at 32 miles (with the long run) I think I'll be just fine going into the fall.

How does business travel or vacation affect your training? How are you staying cool (assuming you don't live in Boston).