Sunday, July 31, 2011

Running on a Saturday

Hey everyone,
First off, I wanna apologize for my hiatus. I pledge to be better about keeping with the updates.

Well, Asher and I are enjoying our summer time in Washington. It was very long awaited, we have been itching for some heat since liiiike April. With the summer heat so came my running fitness and since early July, I have been running pretty well.
I ran a few track races in Canada and did some time trials here locally with my coach. The track races were goin well so I thought to try and extend my race distance a bit. So, about a week ago I started to pursue the Army 10 Miler team.  I made sure there was still a race opportunity to qualify for the Ft. Lewis team and after I pitched the idea to my coach, and he was onboard, we went for it. Coach gave me a good race plan and after that it was all just some running and dealing with a little bit of pain.

Here are a few race clips from early in the race. Asher got to excited late in the race to remember to film me winning so these clips are from early in the race before I put it down. It's okay though her excitement was well received especially as I started to hurt with about a mile and a half to go.

On to the race! It played out just as my coach said it would. It was an 8.65 mile race which is a big distance especially for me, as I normally race 800's and 1500's on the track. Coach told me to get out very comfortable and feel relaxed 2 miles in. At the 2 mile mark my job was to start closing in on whoever was ahead of me. So I worked for the next 2 miles to catch the leader. Catching the leader occured earlier than I thought it would. We were neck and neck about halfway through the race. Coach told me to just settle in with the leader once I caught him. I did just that. After two miles of running with him I started to get a little bored and kinda antsy. Coach advised me to move with a mile and half to go but with 2.5 to go I just couldn't wait andy more and I  started laying down the hammer. From that point on it was all horses to the barn and I was just grinding away. I was pretty pooped with about 400 meter to go and at that point I had to reach a little deeper to finish out strong. I was able to put a little over a minute on the previous leader. The time was also a PR for me.
I was happy about the race and the way it played out. I felt very controlled for a majority of the distance and the plan I was given worked perfectly, so that is always nice.

My splits were something around:
5:45-5:33-5:27-5:25-5:33-5:38-5:21-5:20 and the last .65 was at 5:05 pace.

A few things will come from me racing well. I have a chance to run for the Army National 10 Miler Team in DC in October. I will find out this week if I will get the opportunity. If I have earned a spot on the team, I will race against the likes of Mexico, Japan and Brazil. If that falls through I will for sure race in DC representing Ft Lewis and compete against other military bases for the Commanders Cup. Ft. Lewis has a really great look at winning which could be really exciting.

I have one more 1500m track race this Saturday and then I am going to transition my training to focus on the 10 mile distance. I have a few rabbits lined up so it should be great opportunity.

I hope this update finds everyone well. Ill be sure to drop a post after next weekend!

Much Love and Mileage

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Olympics, studying, and running galor!

Hi all!

I know you won't believe it, but I think it's the first day I have sweat in Washington this year! It's an amazing 82 degrees today, a vast difference from the rainy low-60's we have been experiencing the last two weeks... What a wonderful start to a week of getting back to training!... (Ignore the nerd-ness.)

So going back a month or two: after some hard and enervating workouts/races, I found out that I was vitamin D and B12 deficient as well as low on iron. We believe that when Brie and I went to altitude, the adjustment really messed with my levels. After a visit to the doctor, the nutritionist and then a joyful shot (of what Im sure was stinging peanut butter meant to be B12) right in the caboose....Oh!, not to mention a regimen of vitamin D, iron derived organic cow liver and odd remedy of wild strawberry extract, I am starting to feel better. The depressing part about all of this is that I had to stop running to allow my body to catch back up. I was pretty down about it in the beginning. Its extremely frustrating to have a goal of season culminating races and to not be able to race at any of them. Although feeling like I was missing out on the fruit of all my running toil, it would have hurt the 2012 season if I had continued.

Okay, so fast forward to present time again. Maggie, our australian shepherd, and my out-of-shape self have been hitting the trails and enjoying the nice weather. Dallas is still running at full force and doing amazingly well! He has chosen to race on the All-Army 10-miler Team and will race in Washington, D.C. this October. Its really great to see him back in full force. Work, on top of running, on top of life, on top of taking on a 10 mile race in a few months, he is rocking it!

Aside from running, things are kinda crazy on the home front. I'm studying for the GRE, the major test needed to get into physical therapy school. Its a four and a half hour test at the end of August. Dallas is back to school too. His Master's classes started back up a week or so ago. He is kicking so much life booty! In addition to the study time and school work, we were sent a letter on Friday that said our lease was up on September 1st. So, our study breaks have now become 'packing breaks', as well as 'sell the majority of our stuff breaks' since we have decided to move out of our 1800 sq. ft. house and into a two bedroom, 1000 sq. ft apartment. (Anyone need a microwave or love seat??)

Also, I have two Special Olympics tournaments at the end of the month! I can't wait! We have a softball tournament and golf tournament to take advantage of all this great weather. It should be blast. After the tournaments, thanks to the moms, I get to fly (drum roll please) back to Missouri for four days!!! It has almost been a year since I have been back home. All these great things are the silver lining to my GRE study and stress fest, I am very blessed to have these to break it up.

We have to take a special paragraph to give HUGE props to my awesome mom!!! She once again is more amazing than anyone could imagine. Last month she won Gold and Silver in the 5,000m and 10,000m, respectfully, at the Senior Olympics aka Senior National Games in Houston, TX. She also qualified and competed (in her USA gear!) in the 10,000m at the World Masters Athletic Championships in Sacramento, CA. There she decreased her personal record, ran an amazing race and fell in love with Sacramento. Watch out Midwest family, she might just up and leave one day. I, as always, can't explain how proud of her I am and how much of an inspiration she is!

Hope everyone out there is enjoying there summer and getting in some good times with family and friends! We miss everyone and invite you all out here whenever you get an inkling. :)

Much love and milage,
Ash and Dal