seventhe: (Rydia: power)


The good news:
We actually did fairly well for how busted up our team was going into this (we had injuries, illnesses, training mishaps (or complete lack), or, in my case, all of the above). In fact, I'm honestly pretty proud of my teammates, more so than myself -- we were thinking that 4:00 would be a good time for us this year, and hitting 4:01 with my slow ass dragging us down is pretty impressive. *single crystalline tear* Thanks for being so awesome, team.

My own performance was, well, eh. I'm okay with it. I don't want to say "I'm happy with it" because I'm not, but seeing as I ran with bronchitis AND a pinched nerve, it's more that that's the part I'm unhappy about, not my performance. I'm not angry or beating myself up over anything, because there wasn't much I could have done differently. So, not happy, not mad: I'm okay with it. 7.5 miles in ~74 minutes (by my watch - the clock time above includes Hilldo and my relay handoff). Just under 10:00/mile pace. Not the best I've ever run, but I'll take it, given the circumstances.

And we're still in the top 35% of all the teams that ran this year. Not bad at all!

Also the good news:
Somehow it seems to appear that the shock of running 7.5 horribly hard miles in the freezing cold of morning has scared the bronchitis out of my system? I'm still coughing (and coughing up miracles of nature), but it's definitely receding at this point.

The bad news:
I'm in pain, yo

I've got tendonitis so bad I can barely put weight on either foot. It's Peroneal Tendonitis, from a self-diagnosis after some research in running forums and the like last night. I'm pretty sure it's a combination of a) my already weak and wussy ankles b) absolutely no training for 10 days because bronchitis, and inconsistent training before that because pinched nerve c) surprise!!hills, both UPHILL (which I trained for a little) and DOWNHILL (which I did not and I'm pretty sure did me in).

I'm at work, hobbling around like a total idiot, looking for the secret icepack and planning to basically stay seated at my desk all day long today screw you guys. It honestly feels like someone is stabbing both of my feet. It's horrible :(

The rest of me is pretty sore - my calves are screaming (part of the peroneal tendonitis) and my quads and hammys are very upset with me - but my feet definitely win the shit prize this time around.

The best news:
Despite all the pain, I'm totally done with running for this year.

From now on out, I only have to run when I want to run. I don't have to do any long runs. I don't have to do any tempo runs. I can just run an easy 3 when I feel like it, and if I don't, I won't. Maybe I'll heal? What is this healthy thing??

In fact, today I'm going to go to the pool and do an easy workout (I think the cold water and some stretching will actually help the tendonitis) because I can.

So yeah. Good work, J-Squad. Okay work, body. And now, to hobble to the coffee.
seventhe: (Tifa: bad)
My body's still busted up.

I've been fighting bronchitis for two weeks now. Some of it is my fault: I came down with it the week the Japanese Overlords were here, so I really didn't want to take sick time off of work and leave my discussions and presentations to someone else; I ended up just taking a lot of drugs and cough drops. I'm also dumb because I continued to run and work out for the first week because I don't like admitting defeat to my own body. When it didn't start to clear up on its own I went to a CVS MinuteClinic and got me some drugs for it, but I think working/working out through it has aggravated it and made it worse. That's mostly my own stupidity, and I probably deserve it, but the bronchitis just had particularly bad timing this year.

I haven't done any kind of cardio (running, swimming, or elliptical) in a week, and I haven't even done weights since last Friday. I've also been sleeping like a goddamned fiend - last Thursday I took the afternoon off sick, took a 4-hour nap, got up and ate and read a little, and basically went back to bed and slept for 10 hours - so it isn't like my body doesn't know something's wrong. I pretty much slept away the entire fucking weekend. At this point I'll probably just rest right on through to the Marathon Relay on Saturday, other than PT today. It's going to be a pretty horrible race for me. :/ I'm sure it will be fun hanging out with everyone, but I'm really just not looking forward to the running bit.

PT doesn't seem to be doing much yet. Every time I seem to think things are improving, it then gets worse. I know from experience that this unidentified friend in my neck works in horrible synergy with the rest of me - so when I'm sick, or when I have really bad insomnia, it's way worse - so for now I don't know whether my bronchitis is compounding the issue by way of general aches and pains, or if it's actually worsening. I just -- I thought PT was supposed to provide some kind of relief (as well as fixing what's broke)? Other than the traction machine (which I may actually propose to) it doesn't really seem to do much in terms of relief.

I just get really depressed when I constantly feel like shit. (surprise, feeling like shit makes you feel like shit?)

I'm really ready to not be coughing and dizzy all the time, and I'm super ready to not have constant pain in my neck/shoulders/back. :/

In marginally less whiny news:
  • I've contacted my advisor, I'm trying to pick up my literature search again, and I'll hopefully talk to her and go to some group meetings this month :/ (file under: other things I am not excited about)

  • This weekend I somehow managed to pull together a decently respectable Terra costume for NYCC. There's still plenty of things which can be done with it, but it's more or less going a lot better than I expected. It would be nice to have one 'constant' cosplay that I can wear wherever. (file under: upcoming nyc drunk vacation)

  • I'm almost finished with a stupid scarf I've been working on for like a year (I lost the pattern okay .___. ) and I have lots of epic plans for scarves and cowls and hats and fun things to knit for the winter. (file under: things i will not end up doing)

  • Work is somewhat in a lull right now, which is both nice and epically worrisome. No further developments there right now.



I'm trying to at least enjoy the weather. Autumn is my favorite season, and I love that it's colder out. I love the way the air smells, and I love the colors that are coming out. I just wish I felt better to enjoy it. :/

[edit] also I dyed my hair red. and that's really about it.
seventhe: (Ohayo: Hose This Down)
The Akron Marathon (Relay) is only 2 days away! I am starting to get excited/nervous about it -- last week I was ready to just have it over and done with, but now, I'm preoccupied with how I am going to do and whether the 200 miles of training I've put in are going to show up or not.

Jeff and I both got free shirts from Bridgestone, though - Bridgestone's a sponsor of this race, and because we're employees, we get Bridgestone running shirts. I will, of course, be running in my J-Squad shirt, but I will never say no to a free tech shirt. They're really nice. (That means that for this one race, I'll have gotten 3 shirts: the official Akron one, the Bridgestone one, and our Team J-Squad one. Sweet!)

I can't decide how confident I am about the race. I did my half marathon (13.1 miles) at a 10:00/mile, so I should be faster than that for a leg that's only 7.9 miles, plus I have trained a lot since then. However, the training has been a lot of long slow miles, and when I do faster tempo runs, I feel like I'm going to die - and they're only 4 miles long. So I have absolutely no idea how to predict my performance. My 'goals' are, in order:
  • Beat last year's time of 81 minutes
  • 75 minutes (~9:30/mile)
  • 73 minutes (minus one minute per mile from last year)
  • 71 minutes (~9:00/mile)

It may sound dumb to have this many goals, but I am pretty sensitive to "how I am doing" when I'm running. If I feel like I'm doing well, I get motivated to go harder. If I feel like I'm going poorly, I get upset, and that interferes with my breathing and makes me run worse. So, I try to have levels of goals that include things I am pretty sure I can do, so that I don't get too upset. Running is just as much about the mental as it is about the physical, you know.

I've been trying to go to bed early-ish this week, and tonight and tomorrow I'll be in bed very early. #loser Then again, I have to be up at balls-o-clock on Saturday. #yuck

Anyway, wish me luck! Soon you'll all be free from my talk about training, ha ha ha.
seventhe: (Life: stress out and die)
I haven't posted about training in a while, and since I've run 9 miles in the last 2 days and am exhausted from it, I think it's time for a catch-up post. Here's what I've done in August - I'm in the middle of Week #7 right now.

AUGUST
  MTWRFSS
week 5: 18.3 mi total 5 miles: warmup / 3 mi tempo / cooldown 3 miles easy/recovery 8.3 miles, long/easy 2 mi easy/recovery
week 6: 20 mi total 5 miles: warmup / 3 mi intervals 4x[0.5mi fast, 0.25mi jog] / cooldown 3 miles easy/recovery 9 miles, long/easy 3 mi easy/recovery
week 7: 22 mi total (target) 6 miles: warmup / 4 mi tempo / cooldown 3 miles easy/recovery [10 miles, long/easy] [3 mi easy/recovery]



I'm already at the highest weekly mileage that I was training for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon - my highest week then was 21.5 miles, and if I complete this week (22 mi) I will have beaten that. And I still have 5 weeks left!

I'm still not sure I'm getting much faster - there's a lot of slow running in this plan, between the long slow runs and the slow recovery runs - but with my weekly mileage so high and the fact that I'm getting out 4x/week to run, I'm hoping I am going to be able to gain speed without injuring myself. I can also make it through the tempo runs and intervals the plan has set up for me without dying (which was not true at the beginning of this plan) so... hopefully I am actually getting somewhere.

The whole goal is to not injure myself. As such, and since my leg of the race is 7.9 miles - long, but not absurdly long - I won't be doing any of the training runs that go longer than 2 hours. The plan has me going up to 13 mi of long slow running, and I don't think that's necessary - and I don't want to have to fit it into a Friday!

My legs are really sore. The thing about this plan is all that long slow running - I'm not having asthma attacks because I'm going slow, and that means I'm actually able to run to the point where my legs hurt. Before I learned so much about training, when I was just running for fitness, I would try to do 3 shorter and faster runs every week - which I am sure is good for you, but for an asthmatic runner like me, trying to run fast triggers an asthma attack. So I never "hit the limit" on my legs because my lungs would give out first. With long slow running, my lungs are still an issue, but not as bad, and I'm finally "hitting the limit" on my legs. And oh god, the limits. Who wants to go get massages with me any time after 26 September?

The team's goal for the race is to beat our time from last year, in which the 5 of us did 26.2 mi in 4:21:13 (which was actually JUST ABOUT a 10:00 pace). We want to come in under 4 hours, which means on average, we've got to run a 9:09 mile.

When you're a dumpy runner like me and you're asthmatic, that's a fast fuckin' mile. And I have to run 8 of them.

Now, granted: the rest of the J-Squad runners are really fast, and we'll gain some time just knowing the format of the race (we lost a couple minutes in a relay handoff), so it's still a reasonable goal. But it isn't a wimpy one!

My personal goals for this race are pretty ambitious, but as always, I've got "levels" of goals so that even if I can't hit the top, I still feel moderately accomplished. In order, here's what I'd like to see:

  1. Beat last year's time of 7.90 mi / 80:33 (10:11 pace)

  2. Come in at 7.90 mi / 75 min (~9:30 pace)

  3. Come in at 7.90 mi / 71 min (~9:00 pace)


I know I can do #1, as long as I can stay healthy (not sick AND not injured). I am pretty sure I can get to #2 - it'll be a stretch, but I've been training well and hard, and even if I'm 'only' in the shape I was when I ran the half marathon, I should be able to do that time. #3... is a stretch. It's going to be a stretch for my poor broken body no matter how hard I train. But you need a stretch goal, right?

Honestly I think the best part of training this year is... knowing that I'm going to take a long and serious break from running starting Monday 26 September. >.>
seventhe: (Internet)
On Running A Lot, Honoring Your Body, Donuts, and Why BMI Is Bullshit: A Workout Manifesto, Possibly The First Of Many Long Rambles Unless I am Mass Defriended )

To be continued, as thoughts appear.

[EDIT] As a precursor to a post I'll write later, I'll just throw this out there: think about girls who look like Tifa, or like Tifa would look like in real life: ass-kicking muscles. Strong thighs, big shoulders. I could totally get into that. Who picked "skinny" as the default connotation for "healthy"???
seventhe: Rydia (Rydia)
So I’ve been pretty stressed out lately. Rather than talk too much about the things stressing me, I’m going to talk about the good things that are happening because of all the stress, one by one.

  • Snafubar played our first gig on Saturday night. We shared a show with Lithium and I thought it went really well overall. I was pleased with the way we sounded although as always you can critique these kinds of things until the sun goes down… but in the end, not only am I happy about it, I’m happy to have it over with. I didn’t have a lot of practice time in my week to begin with (and now with all the other stress it really wasn’t helping) and while I love playing it’s nice to have a little break. One stressor down. Congrats to Lithium too, you guys sounded awesome. :D

  • FFEX, NGP, help_haiti: all assorted fandom projects with assorted due dates that are approximately NOW, or maybe YESTERDAY, if not LAST WEEK DUMBASS: but all of which will be done this week and I’m pleased as shit with things right now. Even if my contributions to FFEX have been “cheer wildly while coding people make my dreams come true” and “panic”… even then.

  • Work has been insanely ungodly busy and while I'm trying to pull something good out of it for the list… I’m coming up blank. Right now I’m working on the largest single amount of polymer I’ve ever made for a request, times four requests. Plus a crapload of other studies and other smaller batches which are still my responsibility no matter what else lands in my lap. Due dates for one major project/study is mid-April; for another project/request, mid-May. So right now is crunch time. At least I’m busy, job security, etc. It isn’t helping the exhaustion but I guess it’s helping the days go by.

  • Health-wise: I got the results back from a blood test I took a few weeks ago (seriously, people, I have had 8 appointments in the past 3 Fridays. I don’t even want to look at my medical bills yet). Apparently I am extremely vitamin deficient in a way that isn’t related to diet or sun exposure at all: good job, body, way to continue to fail at the things other people do correctly. XDD I’m lacking Bs and Ds, I guess: vitamin D you hear about a lot in the winter, but B12 is one that contributes to “normal brain function”. Ha ha ha. Funny. I wasn’t really sure why, because I buy my own groceries and cook for myself and eat lots of fruit and vegetables. But apparently this is the kind of thing that can just happen; my body just doesn’t absorb or process or hang onto this stuff correctly, apparently, sez the doc, and that’s that. YEY.
    The thing is, the symptoms (not just lethargy/lack of energy/exhaustion/sleep disorder, but depression, anxiety, irritability, mood-swings*) match the things I’ve been fighting, the things that have been getting worse. The revelation that the B-vitamins affect mental issues and brain function kind of just made it click for me. Hilariously, when I called my mother to tell her this, she revealed that a great-aunt of mine had once been hospitalized in a psych ward for symptoms that ended up being related to B-deficiency. Guess I’m glad we caught this now.
    So I am on a regimen of shots, weekly supervitamin gutpunches, and pill cocktails for a month; after that I have a delicious sampling of 8 pills I’ll take every day (not including the multi-vitamin I’m holding off on for now until this other shit gets stabilized) until I get re-tested in three months for APPROVE/DISAPPROVE. The reason I'm taking 8 pills / day is because the levels of daily vitamins I was prescribed by the doctor are 2-3x the largest size sold in any given pharmacy. Sweet.
    Honestly, this is better than the outcome I was expecting and stressing over (“Your thyroid is borked! You require surgery/serious meds”) and I’m hoping, hoping, hoping that some of my health issues will get their asses in line once I get myself and my internal systems re-balanced.

  • In-between appointments this week, I wasted some time at a Borders which was going out of business and had discounts on their books. I bought myself a lovely illustrated book on Yoga; it’s hard to find a good book on yoga, because what I really want is a book about building vinyasas for myself, and I’m guessing the discount shelves aren’t the best place to find something that specific. But the book I have has a lot of awesome 360-degree photos of some of the main poses, and combinations to do for pain in certain areas of the body, which is pretty cool: I’m pleased, even if it doesn’t cover everything I was hoping it would. I also got a book on homemade spa treatments (which looks really awesome and fun; can’t wait to try it). And also: I found The deck of Tarot** cards for me. I’ve been looking for a new deck for a while, and who would’ve known the perfect deck lived in the Borders clearance bin? Ha: I should have, as my “inner self” is a cheapass. I haven’t gotten to do much with them yet because I’ve been so busy, but they are beautiful and awesome, the symbolism is fantastic (very faerie-based, beautiful yet with enough creepy to really please me), and this is the first deck since my last one that I have really felt intrigued by. Yoga and Tarot… rebalancing vitamin regimen… who senses a theme? Haha, self!

  • My training plan is going as well as it can. I did my first two outdoor runs this weekend: one 5-miler, and one ~3-miler. My training plan basically has one long run per week, and as long as the temperature isn’t cold enough to trigger my asthma I really want to start doing the long run outdoors. However, I have to find a better road to run on! The path I picked on Friday was a really shit road for running. Anyway, my legs are still recovering from the shock of a real road, but I’m getting there. Training is slow, but I’m getting there.


Anyway, my commitment plate has been a little full, but this week – this week! – a lot of it should get better, and maybe I can get this stress-knot out of my neck and this anxiety out of my gut and this exhaustion out of my head. :) I’m looking forward to this weekend if nothing else! Engineering Bitches hit WineCon 2010. Heeeellllllllllls yeah.

How is everyone else!


* Uh, I guess this is the part where I mention that I’ve been going through a lot of these symptoms lately and having some health and mental health issues…? Heh.
** I like the Tarot as a meditation/therapy/interesting-way-of-looking-at-things tool, much like I like horoscopes. Do I think there is a spirit in the cards (or the stars) telling my fortune? No. Do I believe someone like me (who fails at emotional analysis anyway) can use Tarot methods to better understand who they are, how they feel about situations and what they want to do? Yup. Do I like pretty cards with gorgeous illustrations? Also yes. :P
seventhe: (Joie)
Last night I ran 4.5 miles. Without stopping. That's 45 min of straight running. At ~6.0mph. That's a personal record for distance.

And I did it instead of going out to the bar.

Days like this I confuse myself.

Anyway, \o/ ! Go me.

The rest of this post is attn: [livejournal.com profile] jennyclarinet, [livejournal.com profile] hilldo, and I guess any other runners:

1) I saw a bunch of shirtless Cavs players on the news this morning and thought of you. (For others: Jenny and I spent a good amount of time once at a J-Squad party googling "Wally Szczerbiak shirtless" and "LeBron James penis".)

2) The Akron Marathon. Saturday, September 26th. There are a few options we could do: marathon (hell no), half marathon (also probably a hell no), or a Team Relay, which sounds the most interesting to me.

The Team Relay needs 5 runners. Each runner runs a small section of the marathon, and then passes off a snap bracelet to the next runner. Each section is a different length, so you can have people of all different levels running together:

First3.5 mi
Second5.7 mi
Third6.3 mi
Fourth3.1 mi
Fifth7.6 mi



We'd have until September, so whoever decided to pick up the longer legs of the run would have plenty of time to train. Plus, with me, Jeff, James, and Jenny running, we will need one more person... September is plenty of time to train for the shortest leg, that being 3.1mi. The Couch-To-5K program would do that in plenty of time. (That is, unless we get Melissa to run that long leg for us; then we're golden. Haha.)

Now for the bad news. First of all, we'd have to be there at 7am on a Saturday. Blech. Second, registration is $36 per person. Now, most 5Ks cost money to register; it looks like $20-$40 online depending on the race. But still, that's money we'd have to pay for the race. Akron Marathon is a non-profit organization, and their charity benefits "local fitness" from what I can tell; not a bad thing, but I'd hoped to pick a race that targeted a more specific charity. (Of course, Jeff's response is "Look up the course and we can run it together for free on our own day." Umm...kind of defeats the point.)

The other bad thing is that we'd all be running separately, instead of being able to run together and pace each other. However, the plus side of that is that we could say the J-Squad ran a marathon. XD

We have until August to register, so there's plenty of time to think about it... what do you guys think?

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