Funning to Newport

The turn-around time between Oakland and Newport, my first and second marathons of 2014, is about 10 weeks, and while I’ve done quick (and significantly quicker than this) turn-arounds between marathons before, this  one has been a bit, well, different, I guess.

Typically, in the weeks post-marathon, especially if it’s a marathon wherein I really laid it all out there, I don’t even so much look at any type of official “marathon recovery” plan; more than anything, I just listen to my body. If I wake up and want to run 8 miles, I do; if I sleep in until A awakens me, I won’t run (or will run very ‘easy’ with her later, air quotes necessary here only because stroller running isn’t exactly effortless). This time around, for a reason kiiiiiiiinda unbeknownst to me, I’ve been more or less following a 10-week-between-marathon plan, again from my buddy Pete Pfitzinger, and really, so far, it’s been a blast.

Don’t get me wrong here; running typically is a very fun pursuit for me, though admittedly, I do sometimes have momentary freak-outs–don’t we all–if I don’t nail a workout or a run as much as I’d like to. What has stood out to me so far about this little recover-then build and enhance-then recover cycle is that, while I didn’t catch my unicorn in Oakland in late March, I’m going through these training motions pretty much free of pressure.

Isn’t that weird? I mean, looking from the outside in, I surely would have thought that I’d be going through this cycle with a vengeance, and with this sense of incredible pressure to rectify any and everything that I could have done wrong, done poorly, that resulted in me not performing exactly as I wanted to in Oakland… but that’s not really the case.

I guess it’s this kinda weird thing because I’m portraying myself, and my training for Newport, as being ambivalent at best… but that’s really not true. I am still very much committed to my training and to a strong race day performance in Newport, but I feel like this training, so far, has been all ‘funning’ and less ‘running.’ (Ed. note: ‘Funning’ surely is the worst made-up word in the English language, but it absolutely encapsulates what my training has been like so far: namely, just a lot of stuff I usually don’t do.)

So far, aside from the usual mix of recovery, long, lactate thresholds, general aerobic, and VO2 max goodness runs, I’ve also run the Ragnar SoCal relay with a gaggle of TSFM ambassadors, hit some trails  here in Alum Rock (and be momentarily terrified and then strangely liberated seconds later), pace for my first time at a half marathon, and run an unofficial-and-mismarked-10k (and post an unofficial PR and a 2nd OA), and, soon enough, do another 1:45 pacing gig and have some fun at Bay to Breakers (my first 12k).

I’ll start posting some weekly running recaps here shortly, but in the interim, here’s what the first part of the Newport mini-cycle has looked like, mostly in pictures (and some of which, if you follow me on IG, you’ve probably already seen).

Week of 3/24 — one week post-Oakland — 26.76 miles

Running w Chris at PP is always a treat. I insist on not wearing a watch -- recovery mode -- yet still take a picture of his at the end for my own data-keeping. Kinda defeats the purpose, Erin...
Running w Chris at PP is always a treat. I insist on not wearing a watch — recovery mode — yet still take a picture of his at the end for my own data-keeping. Kinda defeats the purpose, Erin…

 

Chasing does on a descent in AR. Look closely.
Chasing does on a descent in Alum Rock. Look closely.

 

First time back at Alum Rock since January. Super green hills!
First time back at Alum Rock since January. Super green hills!

 

Another day, another run on the trails. Love this view.
Another day, another run on the trails. Love this view.

 

I call this my "secret garden" at AR
I call this stretch, in all its switch-backy glory, my “secret garden” at AR

 

muuuuuuuuud. Resistance training, holy WOW.
muuuuuuuuud. Resistance training, holy WOW.

 

Week of 3/31 — two weeks post-Oakland –  34.79 miles

Lush
Lush

 

Doe, a deer... (look closely)
Doe, a deer… (look closely)

 

This is about where the vertigo set in, which made me feel like I was going to propel myself over the hillside
This is about where the vertigo set in, which made me feel like I was going to propel myself over the hillside

 

SJ and Santa Clara county off in the distance, facing... west, I think
SJ and Santa Clara county off in the distance, facing… west, I think

 

Climbing...
Climbing…

And Ragnar SoCal. A cajillion Ragnar pics on that post.

Week of 4/7 — three weeks post-Oakland –  48.67 miles

sunrise back at AR
sunrise back at AR

 

ya know, just hangin above some clouds. NBD.
ya know, just hangin above some clouds. NBD.

 

finally got over some stupid fears of getting attacked by a mountain lion -- that was last seen on this trail in September -- and went for it. aside from the killer-for-me climbing, which was a lot of fun (strangely), the views ROCKED. I look ridiculous here, but you can bet your bottom dolla I was thrilllllllled.
finally got over some stupid fears of getting attacked by a mountain lion — that was last seen on this trail in September — and went for it. aside from the killer-for-me climbing, which was a lot of fun (strangely), the views ROCKED. I look ridiculous here, but you can bet your bottom dolla I was thrilllllllled.

 

preeeeeeeetty sure I walked this. much faster than running.
preeeeeeeetty sure I walked this. much faster than running.

 

that whole fear thing? yea, 'terrifying' is when you're running uphill and hear a loud noise behind you. fortunately, "just" a buck... not a mountain lion...
that whole fear thing? yea, ‘terrifying’ is when you’re running uphill and hear a loud noise behind you. fortunately, “just” a buck… not a mountain lion…

 

daybreak at AR.
daybreak at AR.

 

pano at the top of some hills that took me approximately 100 years to summit
pano at the top of some hills that took me approximately 100 years to summit

 

...buut it's totally worth it
…buuuuuuuuut it’s totally worth it

 

Served as an official pacer for the first time! 1:45 group at the Santa Cruz half marathon with co-pacer/RA buddy, Adam here. We brought our group in, which also included some PRs, at 1:44:28. SO. FUN.
Served as an official pacer for the first time! 1:45 group at the Santa Cruz half marathon with co-pacer/RA buddy, Adam, who also just ran Boston for the first time. I was SUPER excited for him :)  We brought our group in, which also included some PRs, at 1:44:28. SO. FUN. (Source: Linh/RA)

 

and twitter-friend-turned-IRL-friend-once-I-moved-here Anil ran with us and rocked it (and came in hot for a sub-1:45 finish)!
and twitter-friend-turned-IRL-friend-once-I-moved-here Anil ran with us and rocked it (and came in hot for a sub-1:45 finish)! Fact: I’ve met probably ~10 people from twitter since I got on it in 11/12. Fact 2: everyone I’ve met IRL has been a runner. Fact 3: everyone has been cool. Therefore, by the transitive property… I think… proofs were never my forte… if you’re a runner, and on twitter, you’re cool? Right? Right. (source: Anil’s wife)

 

w crazy gal Meg here, who's all "I don't know, maybe I'll run with you, maybe I'll PR? I don't know..." and boom. sub-1:40 for her. That's a PR smile if I've ever seen one ;) PS, pretty sure I'm copping a feel... on myself. #awkward
w crazy gal Meg here, another TSFM ambassador, also on my Ragnar SoCal team, who was all “I don’t know, maybe I’ll run with you, maybe I’ll PR? I don’t know…” and boom. sub-1:40 for her. That’s a glorious PR smile if I’ve ever seen one. PS, pretty sure I’m copping a feel… on myself. #awkward (Source: Meg’s friend)

 

Week of 4/14 — four weeks post-Oakland — 60.03 miles

4.15.14. Remembering, one year later.
4.15.14. Remembering. Internalizing. Enduring.

 

2nd woman OA, 1st AG, 8th OA, PR in a 10k-but-not-really-10k. These things happen when courses aren't certified. No matter, though -- still was a super fun morning and a way to get in on the Boston buzz from afar :)  and, duh, to support a worthwhile cause and beneficiary.
2nd woman OA, 1st AG, 8th OA, PR in a 10k-but-not-really-10k. These things happen when courses aren’t certified. No matter, though — still a super fun morning, replete w some fast runnin’ and a way to get in on the Boston buzz from afar :) and, duh, to support a worthwhile cause and beneficiary.

 

That’s about it so far for the Newport mini-cycle. How’s your training? Do you do more funning or running these days?

 

 

6 thoughts on “Funning to Newport”

  1. Love the photos, and your description of “funning”! I feel like my training’s been a lot of running, just based on the fact that I seem to put my body through the wringer (both with running and life) and exhaust myself. As far as getting the miles in, I feel like this training’s been great. However, I can’t help but feel a little weird about being five weeks out and my longest run to date being 16 miles. Just seems weird compared to other plans that include more 18+ mile runs. Congrats on your amazing races!

    1. you’ve been rockin’ your training, Austin! you know by now to trust Pfitz. :) can’t wait to see you soon, too! OR-bound, baybee!!!

  2. I love running in AR. I haven’t been there in a couple weeks though. I need to go back and start incorporating them hills into my training. Will those do for SFM?? And yes, I am terrified of being mauled by a mountain lion while on the trails too. Seriously. Doesn’t help when that I scream when a squirrel startles me.

    I think you’ll do great at Newport! With all these recent runs and the mileage racking up, I know you you’ll rock it. :)

    1. Thanks for the vote of confidence! Well, I think the hills of AR are like small mountains, so I imagine they’d prepare you pretty well for TSFM… when I ran that in 2010, I was living in Chicago (and coming off Boston training, so I had gotten some hillwork in out there), and I thought it was totally doable. :) yay!!!!

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