Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Get Lucky Half Marathon

I ran the Get Lucky Half Marathon on Saturday. Lucky is exactly how I feel!  Lucky, Grateful, Amazing…and everything in-between.

Last week Troy and I flew out to TX to spend spring break with my Dad. It was a wonderful week. We enjoyed Dad’s company and enjoyed the warmer temperatures. This Minnesota winter is one that just never wants to end.  It is again snowing as I type. 5-7” of it today.

While in TX I ran my first 60 mile week since I messed up my ankle in July. I felt strong and I was able to recover after each run.  One day Troy and Dad rode bikes 15 miles through Atascosa Wildlife Refuge while I ran the same route. It was amazing!  Warm sun, 15 miles…yes, amazing.  Each day was another running adventure. I felt blessed and content.

I attended the same yoga classes that my mom used to attend while in TX and even used her mat which my dad has stored along side his, under the bed.  It was quite an experience. I could feel her there, with me.

Last week my training program ramped up to 70 miles. Again- no fatigue, no lingering soreness from my ankle..quick recovery for the next run. I’m quite amazed, actually.

Saturday was the Get Lucky Half Marathon where I ran a PR. I didn’t even try!  Friday night I had 6 miles to run on my schedule. I wondered if I should run the 6 or take a day off to run the 15 Saturday morning. I’d hate to crap out at a paid race! Well, I reminded myself that the 15 was a training run..which just happens to fall on day that I entered a race. I ran the 6 and felt fine Saturday morning.

The morning was cool and clear. An early wake up call at 4 AM. 25F for staring temperature, not bad considering that most of my runs have been below zero lately.  I anticipated a 210 finish. I had prepared some coconut flour/coconut oil/coconut milk/ bagel type foodstuffs so ate a half before I left home at 500 AM and another half before the race.

The Get Lucky this year began in St Paul, much like the St Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon. We were fortunate to be able to stay warm in the Transit Depot. It is a beautiful building and perfect for hanging out prior to the start.

We began the course by going straight up a hill, jogging around until we were enroute along the river. The course was an out and back  which I always enjoy. I was with my RAGNAR group so would be able to see everyone along the way.

I began with a few 10 minute miles, warming up and feeling good.  I ran past a few homeless people under the bridge, wrapped in cardboard with cigarette packs and beer cans strewn about. Sad. They looked cold and confused by all of us running past them.

As I ran along I glanced down at my watch at each mile . Hmm, 945 mile, that’s awesome.  Hmm..930 mile, that’s even better.  I couldn’t believe it! I felt strong, well fueled and recovered. Amazing. My legs were moving quickly, I was in happyland.

I had to pull my jacket off before the turn around. Moving fast (for me) and 20F felt pretty warm. I wrapped it around my waist and continued on.

At the turn around I sucked down a Vespa and carried on.  I couldn’t believe how great I felt.  

I came into the finish at 2 hours flat-a 9 minute negative – and I felt like I was burning RocketFuel. I’m not a fast runner – I’m sure a happy runner!

My training plan called for a 15 mile run so I promptly turned around and  ran a while longer to finish up 15 miles. Immediately after the run I consumed sweet potato and a protein shake.  I think my nutrition is the reason for feeling so great during these runs. I am paying great attention to what I am consuming, I’ve cut out the sugar and grains and am eating (non processed) carbs centered around the workouts.  I'm adding in good fats and the necessary protein.

My 20 mile trail run was solid on Sunday. No fatigue, no aches or pains…just awesome!

Next up is Zumbro 50 Miler. All training is headed toward Superior Sawtooth 100 Miler!  Bring It!