Sunday, July 1, 2012

Running buddy

It's July. Oh dear. 
It's been a fun and muscle inflammation-filled week. Let's recap. 

Tuesday: RUN - 90min
Wednesday: CYCLE - 75 minutes (crazy spin class)
Thursday: PEAK 10 class (cardio circuits), Bodyshop (weights 'n stuff), RUN - 90min
Friday: Hot Yoga
Saturday: RUN - 4 hours in the mountains
Sunday: RUN - 100min

That makes a 13-hr workout week. 

And of course Spain beat Italy 4-0 in the UEFA Euro 2012 final. The last 2 goals seemed just mean, but then again, Torres was on course and magic simply had to happen. 

The Schleck not racing
(his bro Frank still is)
Oh, and Tour de France kicked off, which marks a super exciting time of year. Even if Andy Schleck is not racing (bummer). Peter Sagan of Slovakia won Sunday's short stage 1, and the guy is the youngest (22) to win a stage since Lance Armstrong in 1993 (he was 21 then). Oh, children. 

Importantly, I also got extremely close to my $1500 fundraising target for the Women's Sports Foundation. My excitement could hardly be expressed and I am so thankful to everyone who has supported me & this cause so far.

Anyway, it's been a busy week, and one might say I was in heaven. I absolutely loved switching it up a bit on Thursday and discovering muscles I had forgotten existed. Yes, I had problems getting out of bed on Friday. The logistics seemed all too complex. I was stiff and sore - hence my trip to hot yoga. Given the physical release heat can provide, this would have been a smart move. But of course I miscalculated the intensity of the class and added a few new muscles to the "I'm tired, leave me alone" group. Brilliant.

Friday's trail action was fantastic, but also humbling. I ran with two awesome guys, Donny and Steve, and I was just focusing on one foot in front of the other for the first 45 minutes of uphill. It took a while to loosen up, but eventually I got there. Since we kept an 'easy' aerobic pace, with time I was able to relax into it and cruise along. I managed to ignore my own rules about consistent hydration and nutrition on the run and, predictably, felt horrible by the last hour. I finally stomached a gel and within 5 minutes, the world was a better place. Live & learn. It was still not pain-free, but I asked for it. Not to mention, the amazing scenery is always worth it. 

Disneyland for trail runners
TGID (Thank God It's Downhill)
I came home dirty, exhausted, but pretty happy to have gone out despite my sore legs. Had it not been for my running buddies, I would have probably (a) cut the run short (b) taken a nap in the bushes (c) not gone out in the first place (d) bored a bunch of non-runners to tears with my pent-up running-related chatter instead. 

Today (Sunday) was a similar story, though the immense amount of kale and veggies I stuffed myself with Saturday afternoon seemed to have made me recover some. 
I would have hardly gone and run for the planned amount of time on my own. Running with a +1 was precisely what I needed. 

I've always been a solo-runner. I trained for all of my marathons by myself and hardly ran with other people, even during long runs...until last year. I was thrown into the mix by running a bit with the Marina del Rey Running Club, pace leading for the LA Roadrunners and finding other runners who I really got along with.

I still enjoy running by myself and completely zoning out, but I know now that I have been missing out. Running buddies will keep you accountable, get you running when you really don't want to, and make the miles fly by much faster. And maybe they can help scare away bears and mountain lions. Or your crazy stalkers. Not to mention, you get to spend more time with awesome people and talk about races, blisters, bowel habits and more. So glamorous.

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