This past Sunday, my friend Maureen and I ran the Sarasota Half Marathon. Even though the training was filled with running shoe woes and stomach bugs, we managed to pull out a personal best of 2:07:33.
The run itself was probably my favorite course so far. To begin, you run over St. Armand’s bridge which lends itself to gorgeous views of the bay. After a quick run around a circle of stores (the temptation to steal Starbucks from the cheering crowd’s hands was strong), you trek back over the bridge and onto a long strip of road. The out and back in masked by a return trip through the surrounding neighborhoods– filled with some gorgeous and extremely large homes. Several households grabbed lawn chairs and cheered on our fellow 3,000 runners.
It went by quickly. I hate to say it, but most of the time I was thinking, “At least it’s not 26.2!” The run was also improved by having a friend there. I forgot how much I missed pointing things out to someone (i.e., check out the guy dressed as Tarzan, how is a nine-year-old passing us).
There’s nothing better than accomplishing a goal! Here’s to the next one.
Recap to come, but for now– beach.
I’m a failure in the cooking department lately. Well, I’m cooking– just revisiting old favorites like Buffalo Chicken Eggs Rolls (try it with avocado inside, delicious!) and Chicken Enchilada Pasta. I always struggle with the desire to venture out and try new things and the pull of tried-and-true classics.
I think that struggle manifested itself a couple weeks ago with my running shoes. I began running in Brooks Adrenaline and they worked fine. I don’t recollect any specific pains during the training and racing of my first half marathon. I bought a second pair of the exact same shoe and continued running recreationally.
Then I signed up for my second half-marathon and the Brooks had lost their luster. I wanted a bright shoe. I wanted a lighter shoe. So, I bought a pair of Nike Lunarglides. I ran 15 miles in them and regretted it. They didn’t fit my foot properly and I’m lucky I only walked away with a couple blisters. I returned them and selected a pair of Mizuno Inspires.
They weren’t perfect. Running in the twenty-mile range left my knees with a dull ache but whether that was a result of the shoes or just a factor of long-distance running is anyone’s guess. There were never any sharp pains and I finished a marathon strong. So why did I change shoes again?
Two weekends ago I ran 10 miles in my Newton Distance after two previous trial runs. I was planning on doing 11 when towards the end of 9 I felt a little ankle pain and didn’t want to chance it. However, the damage was already done. I pushed it and paid for it, or rather “pay” for it. I dug my Mizuno Inspires out of the closet and have been running in them since.
I don’t know whether the pain is a factor of pushing it too far running with a different stride or if the pain will happen regardless because Newton’s mechanics aren’t meant for individuals with high arches. As soon as the situation arose, I google searched my way into a full-blown frenzy.
For now, I’m apologizing to my tried-and-true marathon shoes and shelving the Newtons until after the Sarasota Half. I really don’t need another shorter distance shoe so maybe I’ll work into longer distances. I just couldn’t imagine running a marathon in the five-fingers so I decided to try something that would produce a similar gait.
When did this become so complicated? Do you stick to the shoe that works or try and branch out?
I’ve officially signed up for my next race: the Sarasota Half Marathon. I’ve had that task on my to-do list since I crossed the Walt Disney World Marathon finish line. Training for a race is the perfect way to stay motivated.
I also successfully convinced my Boston Half Marathon companion, Maureen, to come run it as well. To say I’m looking forward to March 11 would be an understatement. 13.1 miles seems like a walk in the park after a full.
The course should be scenic. Unfortunately for a flat course fan like myself, the route goes over a pretty steep bridge twice. So this weekend, I’m vowing to do some hill training.
Here’s the training schedule I made last night. It’s based off of Hal Higdon’s Intermediate but with a few adjustments for what I’ve found I like. Firstly, no 12 miler the week before the race. I prefer a two week buffer. Secondly, I use one of the running days as a cross-training day. Yes it’s less weekly mileage but I like mixing it up.
Do you have any races planned for the spring?
My last two visits to Boston were disasters. The first was a college tour trip gone wrong. The restaurants I had wanted to go to ended up being closed (it was a Sunday) and driving through the illogical city was stress-inducing and time-consuming. My second was two summers ago. I was met with highs in the low 60′s and rain upon rain all week long. Boston made it up to me this weekend. The weather was beautiful allowing my friends and I soak up more of the city than my previous trips had allowed.
Running the Boston Half Marathon this morning! Can’t wait to get my medal, t-shirt, and giant post-run breakfast.
In case you need some new workout songs, here’s my playlist.