Wednesday, August 31, 2011

First Day of School

The apocalypse has happened. I did a workout so hard that I lost my appetite.

I am not one to lose my appetite. In college, when I found another girl's bra in my boyfriend of three years' apartment, I didn't miss a meal. I ate my way through a week of swine flu.

When people say things like "I was too upset to eat" or "It's too hot to eat", I don't really understand it. To me, it's sort of like saying "The price of tomatoes is too high to jump on the trampoline". It's linking two completely separate, unrelated things in a cause/effect relationship.

Sure, I've been too sick to eat after some hot, hard races, but you expect to have some pain after races. Plus, then you often have a medal and new shirt to dull the pain. This was just a Tuesday workout. Turns out 8.5 miles at the track (7 of which were intense speedwork) the night after a 20 mile run is a horribly bad choice. 

The workout: one mile warmup, then start the speed sets. Run a 400 (one time around the track), rest one minute, run another 400, rest one minute, run a 400 and go directly into an 800, rest one minute. I did FIVE sets. I got volunteered to be the timekeeper for our pace group, because the workout itself wasn't enough numbers.

This workout was no joke. My 400s ranged from 7:15 to 7:27 average pace, with the fastest one at 6:54! The 800 pace was a little slower than my normal goal 800 pace, ranging from 7:55 to 8:06 average.

My legs were killing me by the end, and it's pretty rare these days for them to get sore while running. I got home and stretched/foam rolled for nearly half an hour, then showered and got dinner ready. I could only take a few tiny bites of my delicious veggie and falafel bowl. I finally put it away and just drank my powerade zero. Seriously, unheard of. I'd eaten a salad for lunch around 2:30, and now it was 9:30 at night and I couldn't get anything down.

I was more annoyed because I guessed that meant a day of insatiable hanger the next day, today, which is the first day of school followed by a three hour grad class. The first day of school is stressful enough without being starving all day. I managed to eat a banana and a piece of toast before I gave up and went to bed. We still had this in the freezer: 
It didn't even sound appealing. We also had chocolate milk (the super sugary pre-mixed kind) and that wasn't working for me either.

Now it's time for the first day of school! I hate the first day so much. It's chaotic, you don't know the kids' names, no one knows where they are supposed to go, you are supposed to teach all the rules and that's super boring, etc, etc. I'd much rather skip ahead to being a few weeks in. This will probably be the best first day I've ever had. Moving up from first grade to third grade, I've already taught most of the students in my current class, and  they're pretty awesome. 

Kara sent me this, and it sums up how I feel pretty well.

I'll never complain about an extra two hurricane days at home, but today is not the most ideal day of the week to start school. I normally stay until about 6 or 6:30 organizing the supplies kids brought in, replanning all the lessons I planned now that I've met the class and realized they won't work, etc. Today I have to leave as soon as I dismiss the kids at 3:45 for class. Lame.

Plus I washed my hair Monday night in anticipation of a Tuesday start, but now we are starting Wednesday. Think I was going to wash it again last night? Sorry, kids. You get the teacher with the dirty hair, who can barely stand up, and is housing granola bars every time you start some independent work.

Monday, August 29, 2011

20 miles on a Monday??

Around 3pm on Sunday, we got a (recorded) call from the superintendent, saying the first day of school wouldn't be happening on Monday. 

Naturally, my mind immediately started revamping my training schedule. I had a 20 miler planned for Saturday, when I was in Rochester, visiting my family. It's going to be a busy weekend to start with - my ten year high school reunion on Saturday, and driving to another city (2 hours away) for my friend's wedding on Sunday. So, naturally I wasn't thrilled about taking another four hours away from seeing the fam to do my run - with school being canceled, I decided to knock it out today.

One of my favorite places to run is the NCR trail, a long, paved trail that's nice and shaded. My only run there since last summer was a half marathon in April, and according to Facebook, it was runnable - score.

This was a training run of firsts. It was my first long run on a Monday. I got sucked in to watching the VMAs last night for the LAME Hunger Games preview, so I didn't even wake up until 7:30 this morning, and didn't start running until 9:30 - by far the latest long run ever! 
Leaving for a long run in the daylight - craziness!

It was also my longest run all alone - even with all the training I've done to run 2 marathons, and 2 ultramarathons, I've never run more than 17 miles alone. My only companion was my Garmin, which I nearly forgot and had to go back for!
20 miles without a Garmin? Hell no!

I'm so used to running with my running group and/or my friends, so it actually felt weird to be able to set my own pace! It was kind of nice not to have to try to keep up with anyone or have people telling me to slow down.

Of course, I wasn't completely alone, I made a killer playlist last night. My headphones were on their last leg, so I randomly grabbed the pair that came with the ipod, that had never been used, and threw them in my camelbak before I left.

The trail was in good shape, although my run did include some high jumps and some limbo opportunities.
Then sometimes the trail turned in to this.
 A nice older couple on bikes warned me that this was poison ivy, right before I climbed over it!
I was looking for leaves of three, WTF is this hairy vine?

At mile 10.5 my headphones died completely, and I was thrilled to have a backup pair. I run without music more often than not, but the last 9 miles of a 20 mile run to the sound of the birds wasn't doing it for me.

Somewhere in mile 13 I stopped to refill my water and use the (real, flushing) bathroom. First of all, the water fountains were turned off, so I had to trust some random old guy on a bike who told me that this would provide me with safe drinking water.
 When I took off my camelbak to fill it, the entire back pouch was hanging open. Empty. Which meant my phone and my inhaler were somewhere behind me on the trail. Awesome.

I stood around indecisively for a few minutes trying to come up with a plan. There was a three mile span I could have lost my phone on. The trail only has car access every five miles or so, meaning there was no real way to check for it other than covering three miles, out and back (aka six miles) on foot. 

I considered running back to where I'd gotten the headphones out, then heading back towards the trailhead, and just calling Eric to come pick me up at the nearest parking lot whenever I hit 20. IF I found the phone. If I didn't, I'd be stuck running an entire marathon to get back to the car.

I said goodbye to the phone. I was not about to run a marathon today, nor was I about to run 20 miles, then walk six miles scouring the ground for the phone, or come back with my bike and try to find it while I rode. I'd just have to activate my old phone, and upgrade to another smart phone next time I was eligible. In a year. I'd be way more productive without it, anyway.

 As I ran on, I started thinking that maybe someone would pick it up, and call some contacts. I have yet to meet or see anyone on the NCR who isn't super nice, so I felt pretty convinced that I'd be going to pick it up at someone's house tonight or tomorrow.
As I got to 17.65 miles, and was starting to feel pretty tired, I saw this guy riding towards me!
 At first I thought maybe he was just out on a ride, but then he told me that I lost my phone. I told him I knew, and he said someone had called him, and he was riding down to meet her to pick it up! This is exactly why he's in my phone as "Husband - Eric - ICE", instead of just Eric.
 Is he the world's greatest husband or what?

So, I finished my run, as he rode the opposite way to meet the mysterious phone finder. Right after yelling that we had no power now. That makes sense, we had it throughout the hurricane, and lose it on a beautiful sunny day.

20 miles, 3:03, average pace 9:08 - pretty freaking excited about this average pace. 20 miles of that is seriously fast for me. I felt really strong for the entire run, and I actually really enjoyed myself.

I got back to my car, stretched, drank my one bottle of water and ate a banana, and admired a pretty butterfly.
Then waited for Eric to ride back. I was pretty tired so I laid down on the grass and relaxed.

I heard a female voice whispering my name after a little while. I jumped up and realized it was my friend from work, our school nurse, who is also a marathoner. 

Good thing I looked totally normal there.

Despite our lack of power, I was right near Wegmans, so I couldn't turn down a trip. Luckily, right after I had purchased this little treat, Eric texted to say we had power again.
It was going to a good home if we had no power, but I wanted it for myself.
Why don't I eat the oreo ice cream I bought on Friday tonight? Ya, that's gone.

We have a strict rule on not going to the grocery store hungry, so I'm not sure why I thought going after a 20 mile run was a good plan. It caused me to also end up with a jar of crack.

That's going to taste delicious on my waffles tonight.
 I need ideas - how can I thank the wonderful yoga instructor who went so far out of her way to return my phone?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Better safe than sorry is our motto

Normally I wake up totally disoriented and confused about why I'm not sleeping anymore. Today I woke up, saw the cable box was still on, and got super excited that we still had power so far.

I 100% expected to lose power about 6pm last night, and insisted everything needed to be ready by then. 

There's way more of that in the emergency kit.

If we had to evacuate, we'd be drinking from the camelbaks.

That's not dirt. That's what bathtubs look like in cheap apartments.
By 6, Eric had put a Buffalo Chicken Pizza in the oven for us, we had packed emergency bags (mine has chocolate and running shoes), the emergency kit was easily accessible, the cell phones were charged, the bathtub was full of water (not for drinking, for sanitation), and the candles and flashlights were out on the table, ready to go.

We were UBER prepared, so we relaxed and watched Bride Wars while the pizza cooked. 

You may think I was being a mean wife and taking control of the remote, but as my IRL friends could tell you, Bride Wars is one of Eric's favorite movies. He's seen it at least 10 more times than me. Recently, I quoted Mean Girls to him, and it totally went over his head. Since this was previously one of his favorite movies, I was shocked and called him out. His response? "Bride Wars is the new Mean Girls".

After dinner, I made a devastating discovery. While the s'more maker does not require power, it does require fuel, and I guess we must have used it all up last time we took it out (like two years ago). Not one to be deterred from s'mores easily, I devised an alternate solution.

At this point I was in Heaven.
Eric didn't understand why I need one marshmallow in a s'more, and one to eat by itself.
Doesn't this look like a Janae picture?

I kept waiting for the power to go out, but it stayed on until bedtime. We went out on the balcony a few times to check out the storm, and the wind was pretty intense, but all the houses we could see had power, and there was no flooding or downed trees. Every time another Baltimore Facebook friend posted about losing power, I'd get nervous though.

This bad boy resides right outside our bedroom window.
Since there had already been deaths reported as a result of trees falling on people, we slept in the living room.

According to the news, and what I'm seeing outside the window, the storm is not over. It's barely raining, but the wind gusts are still huge. A friend who lives about a mile from me has no power, and another coworker who lives just a few streets away is without it (according to Facebook), so I am SO thankful to be typing this while watching the news, in the AC, right now. I think it's too early for the "I survived Irene" t-shirt, but it's almost time.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Irene Prep

First I wait a week to post, then two posts in under 24 hours. Gotta get it in while we still have power! 

When a natural disaster is predicted, it is of utmost importance to find a way to still get your weekend miles in. Therefore, Sunday's run was moved to Friday, and I met my running group this morning for a 14 miler. I was fully expecting to be running in the rain the entire time, so I was very happy that I even made it home before the rain started! The run was super humid, but no rain or wind - yet.

I train with a store called Charm City Run, and they partnered with Underarmour this morning. The group met up at the Underarmour factory in downtown Baltimore.

Jill and I, ready to start.

No rain yet, but looks ominous.

Our starting point, Tide Point, right on the water.

Tons of crazies ready to get their long runs in before Irene.

 We got a sneak peak at Underarmour's new products. I love Underarmour, but this morning, I just wanted to get started and get the run down so I could get home and "hunker down". Note - if I were playing a drinking game with the phrase "Hunker Down", I would have been wasted five hours ago.

I ran with Mike and Jill. It was pretty cool that our run was at the harbor because we got to see all sorts of interesting hurricane prep.
UN building

All the boat owners are just screwed.

They brought the Coast Guard in to protect us!

 Tide point from the other side of the harbor - looks so close - not like we had just run 7  miles away from it!

Tons of sandbags being filled

One of the people in charge told us 20,000 sandbags were filled!

Sandbags at the rich people's houses.

 We tried to take a few cut throughs that ended up being blocked off. That's how I ended up with 14.5 miles instead of 14.

 We met back at the Underarmour headquarters for bagels and coffee.

 Just in time - the half marathoners always get the first picks!
I was overwhelmed with my cream cheese choices.
 I went with the only logical solution - five kinds of cream cheese. Literally.
 My first Keurig experience! It was delicious. I hadn't had hot coffee since May.
Jill and I chowed our bagels, we were starving after that run. So delicious.

And that's that! Time to chill for the weekend. I am operating under the assumption that we'll lost power in five or six hours. If not, cool, but I am completely convinced we will as of right now. We are not even sleeping in our bed tonight because there's a huge tree outside the bedroom. BRING IT, IRENE!

Just kidding. Irene terrifies me, and I'm praying that the weather channel totally sensationalized everything and all the preparation will be for nothing. On the bright side, in addition to buying Oreo ice cream yesterday, we were supposed to have a s'more party tonight. Obviously no one is coming over to help us eat them anymore, and the s'more maker does not require power. You do the math.