The Hay is in the Barn

Well, it seems technology is just not on my side today (Saturday). Our DSL is not working. No one in the house can get online. (since you’re reading this you know it’s now working again :))
Saturday morning I went for my last long run before next week’s marathon. It was really great going back to a Team in Training GTS. I got to see my coach from Nike who reminded me of a few things that would help next Sunday (like if I get tight for goodness sakes stop and stretch this time). Plus I got to see friends for the first time in a long time. It was really nice despite the gross weather. Cold and rainy was not really the weather I wanted after getting over a chest cold, but I had an awesome run with one of my Nike teammates who is a run/walker. It meant I got a nice relaxed run that wasn’t too fast. I might have also gone ahead and ordered the Garmin Forerunner 305 that I’m rewarding myself with. Oh, and I scored free 2nd day delivery. Sweet!! The Garmin will be here Wednesday. It might go for a run on Thursday…. It’s going to be hard to leave it in the box until the race is over with. Plus my Nike+ seems to be having issues with distance again.
I also had a really good chat with a friend who has qualified for the Boston Marathon before, and gave me a few pointers. I need to add and change a few things in my training to start working on getting faster. I’m totally excited about training after I recover. I have a ½ marathon coming up in March, so I need to figure out a recovery and training plan. I think working towards Boston is going to be a lot of fun! It’s going to be a challenge and it might not be so fun some days, but I like a good challenge.

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Music or no music

This morning I overslept. Apparently 8 minutes to me is 30 minutes to the rest of the world. Oops :). Fortunately, there was an e-mail from my race next week waiting in my inbox this morning. Ah, yes I officially feel like a huge slacker now. (for the record I did do a stationary bike hill program for 30 minutes, so I’m really just being overly dramatic, but I still feel like a slacker). One of the things in the e-mail was a reminder of the waiver we all signed when we registered. In other words, no headsets. Oh well. I’ve never used headphones during a race (I’m assuming that’s what they mean with headsets?), but I had thought of it for this one. Now before I open this can of worms let me say that I get both sides of the argument. Race directors want to make sure runners get announcements, and runners want something fun to listen to when the going gets tough. I get it, really I do! All of the races I’ve done have been pretty big events. The streets have been lined with people cheering (if you’ve ever run the Peachtree Road Race you know what I”m talking about). Some races even have music provided on the course. The Tallahassee Marathon is the first truely “small” race I’ve ever done. And by small I mean only 700 of the 1200 available spots are currently filled. Yes, there is a max of 1200 racers. The last marathon I ran had 20,000 racers… It’s a bit of a difference. Now, you should also know that I usually run with other people. The only races I’ve ever truely done by myself have been a few 5k or 10ks. A bit of a difference from a marathon.

So, the question is now how to entertain myself? I have friends who play word games on long runs. I am not someone who is good with those. My teammate/friend that I ran with in San Antonio and myself decided we would play one of these games around mile 15 of the race. We choose an alphabet game and decided to name cities. It went from cities, to states, and then countries. I loose brain cells when I run. Or maybe the ones I have just stop working because I was awful at the game. I started counting footsteps over and over again, which worked much better for me. Maybe it’s the musician in me who is use to having a steady beat to play to. On the 20 miler for Nike we analyzed the houses we were running past. There are some interesting styles in Atlanta. It was highly entertaining. One problem, the Tallahassee Marathon will not be going past many houses. It goes out along the St. Mark’s trail, which is pretty, and has lots of trees, and well, no houses. I would like to say that I’m pretty good at staying mentally tough. Heck, I’m a musician who spends 2-3 months getting ready for auditions, second guessing myself, and stressing about every little detail for 2 minutes of sheer terror (maybe that’s not the best way to look at it). Some how I feel like I need a plan to keep myself entertained during the race. Maybe I should start a sing-a-long? (I do sing to myself sometimes) Then I can entertain myself and my fellow runners. I don’t know. They might might not find that amusing…

Are you a dire hard music listener? or do you go without? Got any fun ways to occupy your time while running long distances? I might need a few suggestions….

Bouncing, Bouncing, Bouncing

I’m bouncing off the walls :). I don’t know where all of this energy came from. I guess the germs are going away! I decided to start the day off with some yoga to see if I could calm down some. HA! (oh, and what’s a taper? ;p). I am so stinking excited about going for a run tomorrow. I don’t think I’ve ever gone through such an emotional taper before. Seriously! I’ve been happy, frustrated, on the verge of tears, and everything in between. I will even admit that there was a little voice in my head saying that I wasn’t going to get rid of the germs in time to run the race. Classic taper talk (or pre audition talk for that matter). I’m glad it’s going away now! Now it’s seriously time to start making list and deciding what to wear race day (see previous post). I miss my Team in Training race packet. It seriously has the best packing list ever. I always forget things when I travel. I’ve never forgotten anything when traveling with the Team. Can’t wait to sign up for another team event!