Monthly Wrap-Up: January 2018

Yeah, this is a new record for longest delay in posting a monthly wrap-up. There’s not much to say, because my month effectively ended on January 17.

I’m also not sure what to do with part of my Monthly Wrap-Ups this year, since there isn’t really anything to report as far as my 2018 Goal until November 4. I’ll figure out something, I guess.

Numbers never go out of style, right? (Or maybe they’re just never in style.)

January 2018
Total Mileage:
30.96 miles
Average Pace: 11:22/mile
Number of Runs: 9
Last Month (December 2017): 89.44 miles
Last Year (January 2017): 127.77 miles
Races: None

Well, it was basically half of a month, and I cut back on my distance because I was afraid of aggravating my hernia. Also, I guess I should mention that I had registered for the Charleston Half Marathon on January 13, but decided to defer. I heard it was insanely windy that day, so hopefully next year will have better weather.

Best Run: January 16, 3.11 miles, 10:46/mile average pace

This was my last run before surgery. I was looking at a bunch of rest days in a row (as it turned out, about a month of them), so I decided to make this run count, and I did.

Worst Run: January 3, 4.01 miles, 11:53/mile

It was 21 degrees, I didn’t have a whole lot of energy due to a recent bad cold, and, oh yeah, I didn’t know I was running with a hernia. I don’t think the hernia affected this run (or any of my other runs), I just think it’s interesting that I ran with a hernia and didn’t know it. Still, for a “worst” run, it wasn’t that bad.

And that’s pretty much it for January. I had my surgery on January 17, and didn’t get back to running until February, but that’s a story for my next monthly wrap-up, which, at this pace, should be ready by October of 2022.

Weekly Wrap-Up: April 23-29

I finished the Teal Diva 5K. I do wish it had started earlier than 9:30 so it would have been a few degrees cooler, but it was still fairly comfortable. My time wasn’t quite as good as I’d hoped, but it was still respectable. It was still fun, and they raised a bunch of money for ovarian cancer research, so that’s pretty cool. My nephews were sick and couldn’t make it, so I was bummed about that, but I’m sure they cheered me on from afar.

Weight Check: 172.5 pounds, up 1.1 from last week. Yeah, after the race we had a big party, and I overindulged. I’ll just have to work my way back down this week.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Monday 4 miles easy plus Strides 4.06
Wednesday 3 miles easy 3.11
Thursday 3 miles easy 3.11
Saturday Teal Diva 5K (with 1 mile warm-up) 4.11

Total: 14.39 miles

Monday had rain. It was mostly light but it did pick up a little bit near the end. (It would have been much worse if I waited another hour, though.) Temperatures were in the upper 50s with very little wind, so it wasn’t too terrible. My legs felt a little bit off. Most of it felt like a slog, but I did manage to pick things up a little bit on mile 4. Between my legs not feeling great and wanting to get out of the rain (not to mention my race coming up on Saturday), I just did one stride at the end. One of these days, I’m going to do the correct number of strides (typically 5-6), but Monday was not that day.

On Wednesday, I missed the rain (that waited until I had to drive to work) but it was still pretty damp. 57 degrees wasn’t too bad, though. I did some squats as part of my bodyweight routine on Tuesday, and I think I felt those squats on the first mile. After that, my legs loosened up, and my pace improved, with a nice push at the end.

Thursday, the weather was OK, 57 degrees again, but not as damp. My legs felt pretty good, definitely better than Wednesday. I did some foam rolling Wednesday night, and I think that really helped. I didn’t really push the pace until the end, but I ended up going faster than I expected. Just a really nice run.

Saturday was my race, with a 1.01 mile warm-up before it. I’ll do a full write up of the race, but the quick summary is that I probably went out a little too fast, struggled a bit on the last mile because of it, but did manage to rally right near the end.

I have my January 2018 monthly wrap-up completed, I’ll just wait until Monday (you know, the last day of April) to publish it. I’ll work on my other monthly reports (and on Tuesday, April is over and another monthly wrap-up gets added to my to do list) and a race report for the Teal Diva 5K.

Maybe I’ll even do some running, too.

Weekly Wrap-Up: April 16-22

Still no January wrap-up. Busy week. I mostly got my running done on schedule, though.

Weight Check: 171.4 pounds, up 0.7 from last week. OK, now I’m starting to get annoyed. My diet may not have been perfect, but right now, I feel like I have no margin for error. And my parents are going to be here next weekend, so I’ll mostly be doing damage control this week (and probably the following week). Sigh.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Monday 5 miles easy plus Strides 5.06
Wednesday Fartlek: 15 minute warm-up, 5×3 minutes hard with 2 minutes easy in between, 15 minutes easy cool down (or until 5 miles) 5.01
Friday 3 miles easy 3.11
Saturday 6 miles easy 6.01

Total: 19.19 miles

Monday was a strange run. It was kind of windy, but the temperature was still pretty comfortable. I started a little late due to some, uh, bathroom issues. Maybe subconsciously I knew I didn’t have as much time as I’d like, so I sped up a little. My legs felt kind of tired, and I don’t know how much of it was from the 8 miles on Saturday, and how much of it was the fact that I was probably running faster than I should have been. Between the fatigue and the time constraints, I decided to only do 1 stride at the end. I wasn’t sure what to think about this run until I could see how my legs felt on Wednesday.

So on Wednesday, I was definitely curious to see how it would go. The weather was really nice, 54 and sunny. My legs were tired late, but I’m pretty sure it was because of the workout, not because of my previous runs. I really pushed it on the last interval, and had to take a walk break afterwards. Overall, it was a pretty good workout, and based on that, I’m pretty sure Monday was a fluke. Whew.

Friday was a bit colder than it’s been lately, 38, but still not too bad. My legs felt fine. I gradually sped up over the course of the run, and I pushed a bit at the end. Just an uneventful 5K worth of running in my neighborhood, and I’m OK with that.

I’m not sure what was going on Saturday morning, but for some reason, I just did not want to run. Because of that, I got a late start, and I decided to stay in my neighborhood instead of driving to a greenway. Once I finally did get out there, I was fine.

It was a cool start, 41 degrees, but it warmed up nicely. My legs felt a little bit of fatigue on the uphill parts, but otherwise they were OK. I kept the effort fairly easy until the end. Overall, I’m happy with it.

I’ve got a race next weekend, the Teal Diva 5K. Last year, the course was short, but we’re in a new location this year. Since it’s an out and back, I’ll know at the halfway point if it’s going to be an actual 5K. I’ll be happy if I can finish in under 30 minutes.

I’d really like to get a little bit caught up on my monthly recaps, but I’m not all that optimistic. We’ll see how the week goes.

Weekly Wrap-Up: April 9-15

I’ve often complained about races that have Michelob Ultra as their free “beer” after the race, so when a race changes to something more local (and also better, although that’s a pretty low bar), I feel like I should give them a shout out. So kudos to Charlotte Racefest, which was yesterday, and had beer from Olde Mecklenburg Brewery this year. The beer selection isn’t going to determine which race I run – even if I hadn’t had surgery in January, I probably still wouldn’t have run Racefest this year – but I’ll give them credit anyway.

This week, I finally started using my last pair of Adrenaline 17s, my 5th(!), which means that I also retired my 3rd pair of Adrenaline 17s. The 3rd pair led a good life, getting me through the Trophy Trot 10K and Huntersville Half Marathon. My last run in them was my 8 mile long run on Saturday.

Weight Check: 170.7 pounds, up 0.3 from last week. Well, that’s disappointing. I can’t really think of anything specific that caused that. Better luck next week, I hope. I had to replace the battery in my scale. Maybe the new battery is defective. Yes, blaming the battery in the scale is the last refuge of scoundrels.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Monday 4 miles easy plus Strides 4.76
Wednesday Fartlek: 15 minute warm-up 5×2 minutes hard with 2 minutes easy in between, 15 minutes easy cool down (or until 5 miles) 5.01
Friday 3 miles easy 3.11
Saturday 8 miles easy 8.01

Total: 20.89 miles

For the first time in what seems like forever, I ran exactly what my schedule said to run.

Monday was cool and damp, but I missed the rain. My legs were a little tired, but I survived. I took it easy on the first 4 miles, and I did OK on the strides at the end

On Wednesday, I got great running weather, 51 and overcast. My legs felt a little tired late in the run, but I think it was more of a “good workout” fatigue. It was easier to find the right paces during two minute intervals than last week’s one minute intervals. The 2nd fast interval was a little faster than I’d like, but otherwise, I ran them pretty well, I definitely pushed it on the last interval, and took a short walk break at the beginning of the cool down. I wanted to run 5 miles, so I added a bit to the end of the cool down. Overall, I was pretty happy with this run.

Friday also had nice running weather, 52 and sunny. My legs felt fine. I pushed a little bit at the end, but otherwise, just an uneventful 5K run in my neighborhood, and I’m OK with that. Also, it was my first run in my 5th pair (I still can’t believe that) of Adrenaline 17s.

On Saturday, it was warmer, 59, and a little humid, but there was an occasional breeze. My legs felt OK. I did stop a couple of times at water fountains since it was a little warmer than I’m used to. It wasn’t easy, my longest run since my half marathon in December, but I had enough left to push it on the last mile. And as I mentioned earlier, it was my last run in my 3rd pair of Adrenaline 17s, so I’m kind of glad the run ended well.

Next week, it’s a slight step-back, since I’ve got the Teal Diva 5K coming up on April 28th, less than 2 weeks away. Foam rolling will be back, apparently. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll start catching up on my monthly wrap-ups.

Weekly Wrap-Up: April 2-8

Well, I had to juggle my schedule a little bit because I screwed up, but I ended up with a pretty good week, running-wise.

Weight Check: 170.4 pounds, up 0.2 from my last weigh-in two weeks ago. I will gladly take that, considering how the first week went. I suppose I did a little bit better this past week.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Tuesday 4 miles easy plus Strides 4.01
Wednesday 4 miles easy plus Strides 4.72
Friday Fartlek: 15 minute warm-up 10×1 minute hard with 1 minute easy in between, 10 minutes easy cool down (or until 4 miles) 4.01
Saturday 7 miles easy 7.01

Total: 19.75 miles

So, I was supposed to do the 4 miles easy plus Strides on Monday. Originally, I had planned to stay over at my parents’ house Sunday night so I didn’t have to drive home Easter night. What happened after I posted last week is that we ended up taking a trip to my sister’s house in Raleigh. I was going to stop by my parents’ house on my way back, so I just grabbed one bag to bring with me with clothes for Monday, including my running clothes. The problem is, I somehow forgot to throw my running shorts in the bag. D’oh! I realized this Monday morning, and decided I’d just push my run back to Tuesday.

On Tuesday morning, I was a little pressed for time, because I forgot that I’d need to drop my car off for an oil change before work. So I decided to skip the strides, and I also kind of skipped my usual warm-up. I didn’t think anything about it at the time.

The weather was pretty nice, 52 and partly cloudy. My legs actually felt better as I went along, and initially I thought maybe it was a little bit of rust due to two days without running. I tried not to push too hard, with another run coming on Wednesday, but I did manage to speed up a little on the last mile. When I mentioned to my coach that my legs didn’t feel great, and she wondered whether I needed to change my warm-up.

Busted. I fessed up, told her that I skipped my actual warm-up, and that I probably just needed to be consistent with actually doing the regular warm-up. She was cool about it, so it’s OK, but I made absolutely sure I did the warm-up before every run for the rest of the week.

Wednesday was the day when I finally did strides for the first time. They originally showed up in my schedule on March 21, but that was the day it was 39 and misting and I couldn’t even make it to 4 miles, let alone add strides at the end. Then they were on the schedule for the week of March 26, but that’s when I was out of town for my uncle’s funeral, and I ended up just doing some treadmill runs instead. Then they were on the schedule for Monday, but I forgot my shorts, and Tuesday, but I didn’t have time for them. Finally, after 3 weeks, I did strides.

I’ve seen several different ways of doing strides, but what my coach prescribes is to run for about 30 seconds, accelerating to a fast pace, holding it for about 10 seconds, then gradually decelerating, and taking a short break in between.

The weather was tough, 66, overcast, and humid. Welcome to June. My legs felt like they weren’t quite 100%, but they were still OK. I did a full warm-up before this run.

After 4 easy miles, I finished with six 30 second strides with 60 seconds in between. I jogged for the full 60 seconds after the first stride, then went with about 30 seconds of walking/30 seconds of jogging after that. I think it went fairly well for my first time doing strides, and I did finish with my fastest stride at the end.

For Friday, I ended up doing a Fartlek workout that was originally scheduled for Wednesday, but my coach revised my schedule after my screw-up on Monday. The weather was much cooler, 43 degrees, but not too bad. My legs felt fine. I had a little trouble finding my fast and my easy paces at first (Lap 5 was supposed to be “fast” and Lap 6 was supposed to be “easy,” but I averaged 10:23/mile, then 10:20/mile, oops), but after that my pacing got better, then I really pushed it on the last interval, getting down to 7:47(!)/mile. I did start the cool down with a short walk break, but after that, I tried to keep a steady, easy pace. Once I found the right paces, I managed to keep all but one of my fast intervals under 10:00/mile, so I’m happy about that.

Saturday was interesting. I was on call for work, and it was raining. It wasn’t too bad, though, the rain was mostly light, there was no wind, and it was 56 degrees. Not ideal, but it could have been much worse.

My legs felt OK, even after Friday’s workout. I made it the full 7 miles, and didn’t get paged for work during my run. I was probably a little faster than I should have been on mile 2 (and maybe mile 4) but otherwise I kept a fairly steady pace until I pushed it a little bit near the end.

It was my longest run since my half marathon on December 9, so there’s that.

This week, I guess it’s almost back to normal. Maybe I’ll even get a monthly wrap-up done, but don’t hold your breath.

Weekly Wrap-Up: March 26-April 1

It was a difficult week, as you can imagine, and tiring, but I think we gave my Uncle a good sendoff, and the running went fairly well.

Also, I don’t do April Fools Day jokes. When I am King, only Google and ThinkGeek will be allowed to do April Fools Day jokes.

Weight Check: Uh, well, I won’t be back home until sometime during the day Monday, which means I won’t be able to weigh in until Tuesday morning, and I don’t want to sit on this post until then (especially considering I now have 3 monthly wrap-up posts to write). I was at 170.2 before I left town last Sunday, March 25. I ate a lot and drank a lot this past week. We’re Irish, that’s how we roll. I’m not looking forward to stepping on the scale Tuesday morning, but at least I’ll have until next Sunday to try to get back down to a reasonable weight.

This Week’s Runs
Day Total Miles
Tuesday 3.11
Wednesday 3.11
Friday 3.11
Saturday 6.01

Total: 15.34 miles

I followed my schedule on Friday and Saturday (OK, Friday was supposed to be 3 miles, but I always need to make it a 5K), and figured I’d get on the treadmill on Tuesday and Wednesday and hopefully get to 5K.

The hotel we stayed in had a decent little fitness center with two treadmills. They also had towels, which is really nice. So on Tuesday, I started at 11:45/mile, and sped up to around 11:19/mile for the last half mile or so. The treadmill is mentally excruciating, but my legs felt fine.

Wednesday, I started at 11:45/mile again, and this time sped up to around 11:08/mile for the last half mile or so, just a hair faster. The treadmill was still mentally excruciating, but my legs still felt fine.

On Friday, I was back outside but in my parents’ neighborhood. It was warm, 63 degrees, and humid, although there was an occasional breeze that felt good. My legs felt fine. I tried to take it somewhat easy with a 6 miler on the schedule for Saturday. I gradually increased the pace over the course of the run before really pushing at the very end.

Saturday was a pleasant surprise.

It was cooler, only 39 degrees, and since I forgot to pack a long sleeved running shirt, it was a little chilly for the first mile or so, but the sun helped. My legs felt OK most of the time. There was a little fatigue on the uphill climbs, and near the end when I really pushed the pace.

I normally don’t like running in my parents’ neighborhood, but this run went really well. For one day, I owned Madison Woods. It’ll probably never happen again, but I’ll enjoy it while I can.

Next week will almost be back to normal. I’ll still be in Greensboro Monday morning, and next weekend I’ll be on call for work. I’d also like to get at least one of my monthly wrap-ups completed.

Weekly Wrap-Up: March 19-25

Well, I’ll be going out of town this week for a funeral. My Uncle passed away. He was 82 and had been sick for a while, but it’s still sad.

It seems less important now, but my week of running wasn’t all that great.

Weight Check: 170.2 pounds, up 0.4 from last week. I’m not sure what happened. This coming week will be anything but normal with travel and everything, but I’ll just have to buckle down when I get back.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Monday 4 miles easy 4.01
Wednesday 4 miles easy plus Strides 3.11
Friday 3 miles easy 3.11
Saturday 6 miles easy 6.01

Total: 16.24 miles

On Monday, I had decent running weather, 53 and overcast. My legs felt better than last Monday (which isn’t saying much), but other than occasionally on the uphills and near the end when I was really pushing it, they didn’t feel very tired. I did manage to speed up at the end. I missed the perfect reverse split by 1 second (mile 2 in 11:54, mile 3 in 11:55), which is mildly disappointing, but I was still pretty happy with this run.

Wedenesday didn’t go so well. Conditions were terrible. It was 40 degrees, there was a mist the whole time I was out there (and with my headlamp on I could see it, which made it feel worse), there was occasional wind, and you’d think my legs would want to get me home ASAP, but they didn’t seem to want to move all that fast, either. They didn’t feel sore or fatigued, though (or maybe I just didn’t notice because I was cold). It’s rare that I can say that I should have done a run on the treadmill, but in this case, it’s true. I cut it short and skipped the strides. (I’ll write more about strides once I actually, you know, do them.)

On Friday, it was colder, 33 degrees, but dry, so I was much more comfortable. My legs felt OK. I tried to take it easy with a 6 miler on the schedule for Saturday, but I did speed up a little bit at the end.

Saturday…well, the weather was great, 47 and overcast. The run wasn’t.

I got chased by two different dogs on the first mile. That gave me an adrenaline boost which took me through the first 2 miles faster than I should have been going, and then when the adrenaline wore off, I just kept slowing down. By the time I got to the last mile, I had nothing left. I still managed to finish 6 miles, my longest run so far this year. It was pretty rough, though.

Next week, I’ll run when I can. I’ll be at my parents’ house for Easter, so I’ll probably wait until I get home next Monday before posting again.

2018 Goals

Yes, this is late, due to a lot of factors, some legitimate and some not so legitimate reasons.

Of course, I’ve decided I only have one goal for this year, which I pretty much chose on November 5, 2017, and should come as no surprise.

Goal 1: Finish the 2018 New York City Marathon.

Shocking, huh? After last year, I have to finish it this year. I’d like a respectable time, but if I cross the finish line, I’ll be happy, and in all likelihood, done with marathons for good.

I set this goal before the lottery (Like I said, I chose it the day of the 2017 race), but now I know I’ll have to raise a bunch of money for Team For Kids, and that scares me. But I’m willing to do whatever it takes to cross that finish line.

I’m not going to set a mileage goal for the year (which, considering my January, February, and March so far, is probably a good thing), I’ll just trust my coach and run as many miles as she tells me to. My race schedule got all messed up by my surgery, so I don’t see a point in setting a goal for a specific number of races.

I suppose there are some soft goals, too, but considering how well last year’s soft goals went (which is to say, not well at all), I’m just not going to bother listing them here.

I can’t say that 2018 is off to a good start, but there’s still time to rebound and finish New York City.

Yearly Wrap-Up: 2017

2017. It was a very complicated year. A DNF at the New York City Marathon is going to cast a pretty big shadow over the rest of the year.

I’m not sure where to begin. Well, I guess I can start with my goals.

Goal 1: 1500 miles

I ran 1,645.48 miles. Wow. In my defense, when I set that goal of 1500 miles, I didn’t know if I’d be training for a full marathon in the fall. So I really crushed that goal, and set a new record for most miles run in a single year.

Goal 2: 6 races, with 2 that are 13.1 or greater

Yes, but I did it the hard way.

Here’s the full list, in chronological order, and including the one race where I made it to the starting line, but not the finish.

With my DNF in New York City, I had to scramble and I added the Huntersville Half Marathon for my 6th race and 2nd of 13.1 or greater.

Goal 3: A PR in 3 different races

Nope. I got PRs at the Joe Davis 10K and the Tobacco Road Half, and that’s it. Hey, I got to change my header picture twice, so there’s that.

I had some soft goals, too, but most of them didn’t really work out too well. Here’s what I wrote on January 6:

I really want to add some other exercise. Maybe it will be bicycle (maybe stationary, or maybe I’ll finally buy an actual bicycle). I might try yoga, but I want to do it for exercise. I’m not interested in becoming one with the universe. Maybe I’ll take some swimming lessons? (I can get around a pool without drowning, I just can’t effectively swim from one end to the other.) Or maybe I’ll just get on an elliptical once a week. We’ll see.

I want to eat better and not drink Mountain Dew all the time. I’d really like to start cooking more than just pasta.

I really want to focus on slower easy runs, and faster workout runs. I think I have a tendency to not let my easy runs be truly easy, and it’s not helping me.

Finally, I really want to work more on this blog. I need to set up a proper page for all my race reports. I’d like to do a series of posts, probably one per week, on the basics of running, to hopefully help out any newbies out there get started. I’ve also considered writing one post each week that isn’t necessarily running related, just whatever happens to be on my mind. I also need to do a much better job of promoting this blog. That’s not easy for me, but sometimes I just need to put myself out there, even when I don’t want to.

Foam rolling kinda sorta counts as other exercise. Don’t get me wrong, it’s made a huge difference, I’m just not sure that it’s what I had in mind when I said I wanted other exercise. I did get in some bodyweight exercises from time to time, but I never found consistency.

Eat better, don’t drink Mountain Dew, and cook more than just pasta were pretty much all failures.

Slower easy runs and faster workout runs? Nailed it.

Finally, work more on the blog? Well, I’m writing my 2017 Wrap-Up on March 19. That’s pretty much all you need to know about how well I did working on the blog.

Weight Check: I mentioned this in my Weekly Wrap-Up on December 31, but I started the year at 166.6 pounds, and ended at 166.3 pounds, for a loss of 0.3. Shrug. I know I dropped lower over the course of the year, but November and December are tough months.

Highlights

There were some actual highlights from this year.

I kicked off the year with a PR at the Joe Davis 10K (after having a race postponed for the first time ever) on January 14.

I redeemed myself at the Tobacco Road Half Marathon on March 19 with a PR and an intact left ankle at the finish.

I hit the 5,000 mile mark for my running career on March 25.

On July 1, I ran in Connecticut for the first time. State #7 that I’ve run in. In chronological order: North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Oregon, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut. (Also, on a non-running related note, I was in Connecticut for a family reunion, and I had a really great time.)

The Trophy Trot 10K on November 23 was an absolutely insane course, and I only missed a PR by 14 seconds, so it was frustrating, but I still ran really well considering everything.

Lowlights

The course was short for the Teal Diva 5K on May 13. It’s very likely the fastest 3 miles I’ve ever run, but it’s not a 5K PR.

On June 17, I discovered that my allegedly waterproof armband was not sweat proof, and I fried my phone. I was able to replace it, but man, that sucked.

Summer in general just really, really, really sucked. And it seemed like it went on forever, with really hot conditions in September and even October.

I ended my year with a run that was supposed to be 12 miles, but because a cold sapped all of my energy, I was only able to get to 4.17 miles. Sadly, I think that was the most fitting way for me to end 2017.

And then there was the New York City Marathon.

In my 2016 wrap-up, I went through some highlights, some lowlights, and then wrote that same sentence, but this year, I’m saying it for a very different reason. For the first time, I didn’t finish a race. And it wasn’t just any race, it was one of the biggest races in the world, in the city where I was born, and it was the culmination of 4 months worth of training. But for some reason, my stomach decided to give me problems that day.

I was going to write that there’s nothing I can say about the race now that I haven’t before, but there is one thing that I don’t think I’ve said. I still have my medal from the 2016 New York City Marathon, and they can’t take that away from me.

New York City may have been (for better or worse) the biggest event of 2017 for me, but I don’t want to end on that. Instead, I’ll mention the other big development in my running: I hired a coach.

She’s been really good, not only providing advice, but encouragement. I don’t need a drill sergeant calling me a maggot and far worse things to motivate me to run. (I’ve got plenty of inner thoughts saying things like that.) No, I need encouragement, and my coach has provided it. I mentioned earlier the whole slow easy runs/fast workouts thing, and I really got better at that this year, thanks in large part to my coach. I got better at running because of her training plan. She put me in a position where it was possible for me to break 5 hours at New York City (if it hadn’t been for my stupid stomach, which certainly wasn’t her fault), and I can’t really ask for more than that.

The year may have not gone the way I hoped, but I can honestly say that I ended the year as a fundamentally better runner than I was at the beginning of the year, and that’s something. (And they still can’t take away my 2016 New York City Marathon medal.)

Weekly Wrap-Up: March 12-18

Some days, like Wednesday, I’m out there running, nothing is going right, and I find myself thinking, “Why the hell do I put myself through this?”

Some days, like Saturday, I’m out there running, and I think, “Oh yeah, that’s why.”

Weight Check: 169.8 pounds, down 1.8 pounds from last week. Finally, I’m back down under 170. I was on call this week, which normally means a lot of Mountain Dew, but switching some of those to low calorie sodas seemed to help.

This Week’s Runs
Day Scheduled Total Miles
Monday 4 miles easy 4.01
Wednesday 5 miles easy 5.01
Friday 3 miles easy 3.11
Saturday 5 miles easy 5.02

Total: 17.15 miles

Monday was not a good start to the week. I avoided the rain, although there was some mist, but it was pretty crummy weather. My run wasn’t much better. My legs were still tired from Saturday, and I just couldn’t get going. Also, running in the dark sucks. Stupid time change.

Somehow, Wednesday was even worse. It was cool, but much drier than Monday. My legs weren’t tired or sore, but they just did not want to move at all. I couldn’t even speed up at the end like I normally do. I had no idea what was going on, but it was really frustrating.

Friday was a slight improvement. The weather was really nice, 51 and partly cloudy, and because I was working from home and only running 3.1 miles, I was able to wait until it was light out. My legs felt OK. I tried to take it easy with a 5 miler scheduled for Saturday. I did stop around at around 1.3 miles to tie my shoe, but otherwise, there were no stops or walk breaks. I still wasn’t quite as fast as I’d like, but it wasn’t a terrible run.

I went out Saturday expecting it to be terrible. The 2nd day of all of my recent back-to-back runs were bad. And I was on call for work, so I knew my run could be interrupted at any minute.

And, well, it was much better than I expected.

I did get a little bit of rain, starting around 2.4 miles, then off and on the rest of the way, but it wasn’t too terrible. The temperature was fine, around 47. My legs felt surprisingly OK, even with Friday’s run. I did slow down a little bit during the second half of the run, but it wasn’t too bad, and I did recover at the very end. Also, I didn’t get paged during my run. (Or after. I got really lucky this weekend.) It was nice to be out there with a smile on my face for a change. Like I said at the top, runs like this remind me of why I do this to myself.

This week, I’m going to try to add in strides and see how my legs handle it. (Before Saturday, I would have had very a different opinion.) I’ve also got a 6 miler scheduled for next Saturday, so that should be interesting. And maybe I’ll finally finish my wrap-up for 2017.