November 18, 2006

Decent long run

I haven't put in any entries this week because I didn't want to sound like I was whining. I got two runs in, both aborted due to pain. They SUCKED. My disappointment and self-doubts grew daily. If I can't run three miles, what makes me think I can run 26.2??

Well, we've been here before, haven't we? Oh, yes, we have. In fact, for pretty much most of the summer. Knowing this was a light of hope in this dark week because I had faith that my body would somehow dig deep and be able to do today's long run.

(Frankly, I think the physical therapy may have gone overboard, since I alwasy hurt after PT. That has now been discontinued, on doc's orders, until my next injury, I'm sure.)

And so it happened. What a glorious, beautiful day to run. It had turned cloudy and windy by the time I actually got out at about 2. 13 miles on the books for today. Could I do it? That's significantly more than the 9.4 I wound up running last week. But I preppred well, including good hydration Friday, two Excedrin about noon, and brought my gel and HEED. (Forgot to bring Endurolytes; turned out to be a non-issue.)

Making an exception to my rule about no music during long runs, I listened to Phedippidations episodes to get caught up. The first one, about the bravery and courage of long-distance runners, was good company on the outbound leg of my run. Though I don't quite buy Steve's conclusions in this episode, it was good food for thought. Besides, it certainly felt brave to intentionally go out for 6.5 miles before turning around. What if I couldn't get back?

The turnaround point was approximately two miles beyond the Verazzano, just a couple hundred yards shy of the Toys R Us at Gravesend Bay. Coming back, I listened to the podcast in which Steve runs the 31st Marine Corps Marathon. He had a hard time with congestion and also commented on the stiff wind they ran into for half the race - something I could immediately sympathize with as I was now running into a stifff wind myself. It was hard to keep warm and I was working harder to keep going. My lungs also chose this time to start a mild asthma attack, though nothing I couldn't handle.

Now, at the beginning of this week, I finally purchased a fancy-schmancy running watch complete with heartrate monitor and shoepod for rate and distance. Though I haven't calibrated the distance yet, I decided to trust the watch when the autolap beeps seemed to correspond with the mile markers I remember from running with the calibrated Nike+ nano. Okay. According to gmaps, I may have gone a little longer than the watch says; but as the last 5K was a mile struggle, I don't think a half mile more or less really much matters.

It was interesting keeping an eye on my heartrate. In general, I stayed right in the training zone. But my hunch about what happens when I have coughing fits and why I have to walk is right on. For the first time, I have empirical evidence that my heart rate jumps up quite a bit - The upper limit indicator would flash angrily. No wonder I end up walking while I cough. Average heart rate was 144, max heart rate 158. According to the watch, I spent a good 40 minutes of time above 80% max HR and my average is at 78% MHR.

And now I can look at splits, too!

I can really see where I finally got warmed up, where the wind started affecting me, and where I started to run out of steam. Neat. I look foward to trying to make my runs more evenly paced.

My lungs felt pretty good most of the time, aside from the mild asthma, and that helped. I was bringing up a lot off gunk, but I've been doing that all week. Probably due to so much time spent in the theatre this week.

Final note: I wore my Team Boomer jersey for the first time today. And got noticed! Apparently Jerry Cahill was out jogging, too and saw me; he emailed me later. I discovered that blue and white aren't a great color combo for CF runners - I need a color that will, uh, hide my effluvia. I did manage to slime myself once and that shows up pretty well on white. So I have an idea: camo-style fabrics in sputum-colored palettes.

Behold - the premiere of my new textile line: Phlegm-o-flauge!


Janice said...

Glad to read you had a decent long run. I remember training for the Toronto Marathon and falling apart on a 14 mile long run (I walked the last 4 miles home). I felt like giving up my training altogether. I came back for a 16 mile run the next week and was stronger than ever! It felt great:)

Brooklyn said...

Janice, thanks for the note. It's good to remember that a body can recover in a week, because I'm hurting today! Maybe not as bad as I deserve, but still I'm fixing to go out in a few minutes and track down some ibuprofen, which I forgot to bring on my trip.