Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Zombies, Run!

Should the Zombie Apocalypse actually become a thing, all of the miles that I've put in should improve my survival chances -- especially if the zombies are of the the slow-moving, dimwitted variety

If you're not confident in your survival chances, there's an app for that:
A brand new running app called, “Zombies, Run!” will transform your repetitious run into a game. Boredom is blasted away while you run to seek safety for yourself and those around you. While the story streams straight through your headphones, you can complete 30 missions and 40 runs worth of game-play as you run towards becoming a hero for all mankind. Forget running in that Wonder Woman costume at the next themed race, this is your opportunity to show ‘em who’s boss and save humanity in your favorite run clothes. Click here to find out more about this cool new app!  -- Women's Running Magazine
Sounds awesome, right? I sometimes dread going out for speed workouts, but the threat of a zombie attack would definitely force me to keep my pace on those runs.

Anyone want to use this to train for the Run for Your Lives 5K?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tuesday Inspiration: Become Legendary

iPod Shuffle has played tracks from the Space Jam soundtrack more than once this week, which has lead to something of a Michael Jordan kick.  This week's Tuesday Inspiration is from his 2008 "Become Legendary" campaign.

"It's not about my shoes.  It's about knowing where you are going, and not forgetting where you have started.  It's about having the courage to fail, not breaking when you're broken,  taking everything you have been given and making something better.  It's about work before glory, and what's inside of you.  It's doing what they say you can't. It's not about the shoes; it's about what you do in them.  It's about being what you are born to be."
-- Michael Jordan

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Operation Sub-2 - Weekly Round-Up (7)

This week of training went well, and I did a much better job of following my training plan. Starting this week, I'll taper my training so that I'm well rested in time for the half-marathon in March...which is approaching much faster than expected.  Seriously, February, in addition to the uncharacteristically warm weather (not complaining, by the way), why did you fly by?

I'm a little worried about my knee, though, which has been acting up on my last few runs.  I did a five-miler this morning and had to stop a few times to give it a rest.  I bought new shoes today, so I'll see if that helps at all. If not, I might take some time off before the race.

Here's what I have for the week:

Sunday: 5 Miles
Monday: X-Training and Strength
Tuesday: Speed workout (45 minutes)
Wednesday: 3 miles (easy)
Thursday: 4 miles
Friday: Off
Saturday: 15 miles

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

An Open Letter to the Fastest Jogger In the Park (via McSweeney's)

I sometimes forget that McSweeney's exists when I'm searching for things to read on the internet, but this open letter is a good reminder that I should stop by the site more often.

"An Open Letter to the Fastest Jogger in the Park" by Eric Torres 

But I wonder, am I projecting my resentment? Are you even bothered by the peril and dishonor of being forced to blaze your glorious trail amongst contemptuous indifference to your need for space? You may be filled with righteous indignation, fastest jogger at the park, but you did not show it today. From the moment you exploded into my life at the forest’s entrance until you disappeared from my sight in the midst of those skittish Japanese tourists, you wore a countenance of singular determination. 
I like to believe that, when you reach your full velocity, you are transported to a zen state of ancient, primal satisfaction; unconcerned by the petty misunderstandings of the surrounding world, you are like a wild horse running at full gallop down the halls of a retirement home, blissfully indifferent to the decrepit minds that can’t even decide if the wonderful creature bearing thunderously down on them is a horse, or a steam-engine, or their nephew Theodore making a fuss about the pantry being empty when he’s had more than enough sweets for one day. 
Yes, there were many at the park today who didn’t seem to understand the sublime feats of speed and agility that you were carrying out in their midst, precipitously close to their toddlers; but I saw you, fastest jogger at the park, and if the Gods find me a worthy vessel for the tale of one so fast, I will dedicate my life to singing your deeds.
 Read the rest at McSweeney's

Monday, February 20, 2012

Operation Sub-2: Weekly Round-up (6)

Every so often, I'll have a couple of weeks where I mean to follow my training schedule but completely fail.  When this has happened before, it often signaled skipping workouts. But, I can happily report that, even though I haven't exactly followed my training schedule, I've still gotten in plenty of miles and several hard workouts.  In particular, Stef and I cut our long run a little shorter this week but did roughly 4 miles in the middle of our run at our respective goal paces for the half-marathon.  It felt good, and I definitely feel myself getting faster.

I'm going to try to stick to my schedule as closely as I can this week, especially given that this is a last hard week I have planned until the half-marathon in March.

Sunday: 11 miles 
Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 60-minute speed workout
Wednesday: 4 miles
Thursday: 4-6 miles
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 20 miles (*gulp*)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Love the Run You're With 5K - Race Round-Up

This week, I decided that, in addition to a full-time job and a full-time training schedule, I wanted a social life.  Of course, going out every night this week meant that I was completely drained by the weekend and fell asleep on both Friday and Saturday before 11 PM. A personal best.  I think it's time to learn some balance.

The plus side of having two nights of being in bed so early is that I woke up for the Love the Run You're With 5K feeling refreshed and ready to race.  After a quick breakfast, I met up with Stef to make our way to Pentagon City for the race.  If you've been following my running (mis)adventures for a while, you'll recall that I ran this race last year and that I made it a point to blast "Single Ladies" while waiting in the starting corral to celebrate being single while standing among the very clearly coupled runners.  Doing this race with such an awesome friend this year made the experience feel less lonesome.

When we went out toward the starting corrals, Stef and I wedged ourselves toward the front of the middle of the pack.  There was no seeding this time around, so it was up to everyone to pick the starting position that most reflected the pace they would run during the race -- or at least one would think that would be the case.  Maybe it's my runner snootiness coming out, but it's really frustrating when people running a pace slower than their seeding would suggest start toward the front and folks who want to move a little faster have to weave through to find good space.  I did this for a while before I got to the first climb, which definitely helped bring some order to the pacing.

Once up the hill, the course is a flat out-and-back through residential Arlington.  I finished the first mile in 8:20, which felt fantastic.  I must of gotten excited after that mile because I ran the second way faster than I should have.  I glanced down at my watch a couple of times and saw that I floated around a 7:45 for a big chunk of the split.  Just before hitting the mile marker, I slowed down a little knowing that I needed something in the tank for the last mile. 

Previous Record: 27:17, Race to Representation (November 2011)
Net Time: 25:42 (New PR)
Average Pace: 8:17
Division: 44/393

I'm very happy with the result.  It's so nice to see that all of the speed work that I've been putting in has made a difference.  Now, if I can keep this up and train hard for the next few weeks, I'll be in great shape to hit my time goal for March's half-marathon.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Operation Sub-2: Weekly Round-Up (5)

I had a solid week, and I'm looking forward to the next week of training.

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Speed Workout - 45 minutes
Wednesday: 4 miles
Thursday: 6-8 miles
Friday: 4 miles
Saturday: Off
Sunday: Love the Run You're With 5K

I promise a more substantial update later in the week.  I registered for my third marathon, so I'll outline my goals for training and the race.  Enjoy Super Bowl Sunday!