No, I did not get swallowed by a snowstorm, succumb to a mileage-induced coma, or [finally] get hit by a car, though I won’t deny the very real possibility of these things occurring. I am deeply sorry for leaving you in the dark for so long – I can’t imagine how lonely, boring and utterly empty the last two weeks have been for my readers. I know you have all been sitting anxiously at your computers, fiddling, worrying ,waiting, and wondering about shoeless coolis: what was her mileage this week? Did she clothe herself before her long run? Did she get tripped by Megan Lynch? Did she do any push-ups? Real ones? Did she finally get hit by a car? Or slip on ice? How long can she hold the plank position now? Oh the burning desire you must have to know the answers to these important questions!
Well, first things first: I ran 100 miles this week. Yes, I did it. 100 miles, 6 days, 8 runs later I am alive and typing at my computer on an enormous sugar high from eating an entire bag of licorice for having accomplished such a feat. I actually wasn’t intending on hitting 100 just yet but on Thursday I realized I’d hit 98 with my regular Friday and Saturday runs so at that point, could there really be anything done to stop me? Besides the possibility of getting hit by a car from running downtown for 2 hours every day? I think not.
A desolate morning run
So...my workouts were nothing spectacular but I suppose that’s to be expected in the thick of the miles. Last Saturday we did a challenging workout in the cemetery consisting of 8x1k w/90s rest and 2x500m w/90s rest. I went into the workout with my legs feeling heavy and tired and expecting to try and just get through 6k of intervals. I surprised myself by instead working through 9k in wind and mediocre footing, feeling stronger throughout in 3:43/3:41/3:38/3:41/3:36/3:43/3:29/3:41/1:39/1:42 (every other km is slower because we reversed directions and were going into the wind). I was happy with the effort, but I have to say after having gone into the workout feeling zonked, I was doubly so afterwards. Let’s just say I’m glad I’m one of the tallest ones in my ballet class so that the teacher didn’t notice me barely leaving the ground during the jumps. I remember also feeling my eyes close several times while standing up, which is never a good sign. Perhaps not surprisingly, I didn’t feel recovered by Monday’s workout, which turned out not to be an issue since Forest hill was transformed into a skating rink that night. This, of course, led to another crazy coach interval session, where we ran random sections of road, slowing at stop signs and accelerating when the road was clear and basically coming to a standstill whenever we made a tight turn. Good times. My favourite interval was the last one, where Nic turned to us and said: ‘Run NORTH. Slow down at the intersections though. And then accelerate. Everyone ready?’ I think a few of us knew we were missing some crucial detail of the interval, though perhaps not everyone could grasp what it was, since I was the only one to ask just how far we were supposed to go! Nic sighed and hummed as if I were asking her an incredibly loaded question. ‘Ummm...go...until....hmmm...you get tired.’ ‘Well, Nic,’ I responded, ‘for some of us (i.e. the relentless slow-twitch marathoners of the group) that would mean a lot longer than others...’ Still, her instructions did not change, so we set out on a potentially never-ending interval up the icy Russel Hill road. Fortunately for my tired legs, 600m in Nic yelled ‘STOPPPPPPP!!!!’ at the top of her lungs and we all haphazardly slowed to a jog. This was perhaps one of the strangest workouts we had done, which led me to conclude that it had really been a while since I had updated my blog. The only explanation I could find for the oddity of the workout was that Nic was purposely trying to provide me with blog-worthy material.
The rest of the week was spent logging slow and long miles, many of which were alone and in the dark. On Friday I brought my camera along to give my friends a taste of what I do for two hours each morning. Unfortunately I am a completely hopeless videographer, my clip looking more like an excerpt from Blair Witch Project than a peaceful morning run. I am not sure why I am including it in this post – perhaps because I am simply at a loss of exciting things in my life, and this is a somewhat accurate reflection of it right now? Oh dear. This is really quite sad. If you are somehow bored enough to watch an entire 2 minutes of unsteady filming of a desolate road in the dark, you may observe that two vehicles *seem* to come dangerously close to me (as evidenced by the blinding bright lights coming directly into the camera), though I profess that they were actually quite far away from me. That, and the fact that I am fearless since I am able to dodge them in ninja-like fashion, of course.
We were blessed with a wave of warm weather on Thursday and Friday so for once it was warm for our long run and I didn’t have to worry about inappropriate dress! Aaaah the awesomeness of it all. Apparently it usually takes me 30min to put my winter gear on (and not even fully at that!), as I was ready to head out at 4:45 instead of the usual 5:15. So what do I do in this circumstance? Have a much needed 30min powernap? Of course not! (What a waste of time!) So obviously I head out before 5 and get in 5k before I meet Val and finish off 30k by 7:15. I felt like superwoman until about 9AM, at which point I almost face-planted into my lab bench, potentially contaminating my cancer cells (and maybe more concernedly getting cancer cells on my face...). It was nothing that litres of Gatorade couldn’t cure, however, and by my afternoon run I was feeling much more chipper.
The sun is rising!
By Saturday the fatigue was setting in pretty hard, but knowing I only had 14.5 miles to do before hitting 100, I was motivated. The workout was 2k fartlek/2x1k/2k/2x500/1k fartlek. I actually felt pretty good and was at 3:30/3:29 for the km repeats, but that quickly sucked the life out of my legs and I struggled through the second 2k repeat. As I completed my cooldown I wondered how I’d feel having done 100 miles. Would I suddenly fall over and slip into a coma? Would I have to nap all day? Would I wake up sore and unable to walk? I couldn’t believe the lack of acute effects the week had, except for becoming severely intoxicated off of one martini (and I can’t really complain about that). Suffice to say that I celebrated my big week on Saturday night with a shamefully small amount of vodka that was somehow enough to keep me dancing all night. I had such a good time that I somehow missed getting kicked/beaten/punched in the leg, as I woke up the next morning with a giant, GIANT bruise on my leg.
I still am at a loss to explain how it got there. I would like to say that I got it from running 100 miles (that would be pretty hard core) but unfortunately I am pretty sure it wasn’t there before heading out on Saturday. Dammit.
Post-100 mile fuel
Next week I will be bringing down the miles a bit in preparation for the big coach-coolis showdown in Grimsby. Nic and I are both running the half-marathon, where I have bets on leap-splitting over the finish line and edging her gracefully, thereby proving that my ballet training is useful for marathoning. You just wait!
**Note: I am currently unable to upload my awesome Blair Witch video (I think it just contains too much greatness for the internet to handle) but will be working constantly until I am able to post it.**