Monday, June 29, 2015

Running home...

If "home is where the heart is" then home for me is (and always will be) the country where I grew up, where the majority of my family lives, and where I have "visited" four times already this year. My trip home was orchestrated for numerous reasons, one of which was to celebrate my mom's birthday. And it came at the perfect time because I needed a break from my day-to-day routine. My favorite thing about my first day back home was being able to read a good novel...

and enjoy the relaxing view...

On Saturday morning I ran. When I go home my long runs are typically done with one of the popular running groups...
I kind of "adopted" them (or rather they adopted me) so that I can get my long runs completed along a route that's patrolled and has designated water stations. The Saturday run was supposed to be a 10 mile run for me and since it's my taper week I figured it would be easy. I was wrong. It wasn't easy at all. In fact I think it was one of the hardest runs I've ever done at home. I made it through 8 miles before I decided to stop. To be completely honest I wanted to stop from mile 4 but kept pushing through until my ankle started to hurt and I felt like I was slowing down my running friends.

My eight miles...

Elevation overview...

I was disappointed that I wasn't able to complete all 10 miles but tried hard not to let it show...

I try not to get frustrated when I start a run but am unable to finish it. However, it's hard to stay focused on the positive side of things when there are extenuating circumstances that inhibit successful completion. On Saturday my challenge was the ankle pain; on other occasions it has been the humidity (sometimes it's both).

I know I need to take into consideration the fact that there are more inclines on my runs at home. The terrain also requires careful navigation so that I don't land incorrectly and sprain my ankle. But I paid attention to where I was landing. And, apart from one occasion where I nearly fell flat on my face, I was pretty good about landing properly.

And I know that my legs are probably still in shock from my 16 mile run last weekend and the fact that I did back-to-back running days on the Wednesday and Thursday before the Pacers run. But I'm still disappointed I wasn't able to complete the mileage. Anyway, despite not finishing, I was still glad I got to run with my awesome JA running friends, including Sacha who is also training for the Chicago marathon and did an amazing "symmetrical" 10.10 mile run with an 11.11 min/mile average :)

On Saturday evening I was still pretty bummed about the run so I decided to try and run a 5K the following morning, but as the day progressed my legs got increasingly sore. My siblings unanimously vetoed running on Sunday because they said I needed to take a rest day.

In addition to the advice to take Sunday as a rest day, I was also told:
#1. "Don't run again until Saturday; only swim" - I'm not doing that, but I will modify my mileage this week depending on how I feel, and incorporate swimming in conjunction with #2 (below).

#2. "Cross train more"- I'm definitely going to do that. I haven't been cross training as much as I should so I will increase my focus on that this week.

#3. "Get massages" -  I've been meaning to get massages actually. And now that my schedule is a little bit more flexible for the next two months I'm going to look into it.

#4. "Focus on your core work" - I know I know I know, core work is essential. I only got 1/2 way through my sit up challenge (I think I get bored after 15 days) so I may need to restart it in July.

#5. "Strengthen your arms" -  Just like the sit-up challenge in June, I bailed on the push up challenge in May after 15 days or so. But I think I may use light weights instead of the 30 day challenge to increase my arm strength.

The advice was great and I rested on Sunday and today. Hopefully I can catch up on sleep tonight and be ready to start my training again on Tuesday :)

How is your training going?

What's your minimum mileage for your "cutback" or "taper" long runs?

Do you have a place you call "home" that's different from where you live?


  1. I decided that I am not meant for a 30 day challenge. I have failed to finish any of them. I too get about half way through before I stop. And it isn't giving up for me, it's just losing track and getting off schedule. Then I realize the challenge is over and I didn't finish it. I'm just going to stop attempting.

    1. I think I need more maybe every day has a different activity. So if I'm working on my core then maybe one day I do sit ups, then planks the next day, then leg raises the following day....something to think about ;)


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