Monthly Archives: December 2011

Goodbye 2011! Welcome the tip jar.

I’m leaving the year under the weather. I don’t think it’s auspicious at all (mainly because I don’t believe in stuff like that). Anyhow, a great year. Met some great new people, maintained some great friendships, good time at work, lots of PRs.

I had a bad week training-wise this week. I got behind on training early in the week and stupidly tried to catch up. The further I fell behind, the more stressed out I got and the less motivated I was to train. So this morning, I wrote coach an email owning up to my failure this week. Felt good to blow everything up and start fresh. Sometimes, that’s what I need to do. Accept failure and continue on.

However, that got me thinking about something. A new contest if you will. Rev3 has a partnership with the Ulman Cancer Fund to raise money for the fund (including an awesome Run Across America by Rev3 staff and some of the team), and coach and I had talked a bit about how I could put incentives (or, rather, disincentives) for myself to complete all of my workouts. He suggested a jar, where I put in some money every time I fail to do a workout (not fail to hit the targets, mind you). Here’s my idea:

  • For every week I miss a workout, I pledge to donate $10 to UCF
  • For every week I hit every workout, readers will each donate $1 to UCF

Obviously, there’s still a bit that needs to be worked out here. For instance, if I’m sick and get permission to not do a workout, does that count as missing a workout? Who keeps track of whether I miss a workout (I can actually just use the calendar of stuff… that’ll prove the workouts are there)?

More to the point though, would you (the collective you, my readers) be willing to join in on something like this? Leave a comment so I can gauge interest (I plan on holding up my end of the bargain regardless of whether others join in).

Ebb and flow

Prednisone is a hell of a drug. After going in to see the dermatologist on Tuesday (an appointment where he asked whether being red headed runs in my family…dunno why he’d ask that), I got put on a course of Prednisone. Amazeballs. It knocked me a bit for a loop: I don’t know if it was just the power of suggestion but I felt a bit sick (weakened immune system?) and a little bit heavy (increased appetite/water retention). My guess is that both are just temporal anomalies and will be resolved soon. But the hives are completely gone. Which is awesome. But the steroids and hives really knocked me off my training game for two weeks, so I’m glad to be past that.

Coach Steve had me do my bike testing this week. Not sure if he wants me to describe the protocol, so I won’t. But I’m really happy that 1) there is a protocol, 2) there’s a coach prescribing said protocol, and 3) I executed the tests as specified. I don’t think my results were stellar at all, but I’m glad to have something down “on paper” to build on over the season. And having done all of these tests indoors, I think I’ve done some really good work mentally as well. So bully for me! I wouldn’t say I’ve gone backwards in terms of power, etc on the bike, but I feel the stagnation ending

In the middle, freezing, head down.

Today was yet another 5K (the Yulefest 5K). Hung out with the Racemenu peeps. Cold cold cold day. Couldn’t feel my feet for the first mile (5:38 which holy shit…). After I passed RaceMenu captain Alain, I tried to close the gap to RaceMenu teammates Jason and Brad, but I couldn’t. My stomach wasn’t really solid today and 2.5 miles in I had to stop for a brief moment to make sure I didn’t defile my running tights (plus, I didn’t think my time for the 5K team competition would matter as I hadn’t bridged to Jason and Brad). Disappointing, but I had every chance to resolve the issue before the race. Next time. Turns out my time did matter (to some extent) because Jason and Brad’s registrations hadn’t been correctly moved to the team competition, but the team that came in first would have beaten us anyhow. Finished less than 10 seconds behind a PR, so next time.

After the race, I had lunch with Joe from 1BandID. He’s an awesome guy and made me a new ID to congratulate me on my Team Rev3 selection. A really nice gesture from a man I feel very fortunate to call a friend.

The Hivening

If you’ve followed my twitter at all lately, you’ve seen me mention the hivening. At some point between getting back from Los Angeles and starting to clean my apartment, I started getting hives or some other rash around my body. At first I thought nothing of it, but after a few days, it wasn’t getting any better. It still hasn’t. Currently, my legs both look like this (not the splotches of red… that’s all incredibly itchy): Not the greatest image, but it’s pretty miserable. Hard to focus on much outside of not scratching. Hopefully going in to see a dermatologist tomorrow.

A few results to note:
Won a beer mile on Saturday night. Julia (a Rev3 teammate) has the report here. I probably could have gone faster had I not stop to chat with spectators and drink my last beer at a leisurely pace. Apparently I need to do more races involving drinking.

Came in 9th at the Miss Santa 5K Sunday with a 19:08. I was extremely hung over as a result of the beer mile the night before. I’ll be interested to see if I can improve on my time there if/when the hives clear up as well.

I’ll post more about current training, etc when I can focus.

Swedish Fish don’t swim

Just got back from a swim workout. I know. It’s 11PM on a Sunday and I just finished a swim?! Well, yeah I did. I’ve had a very lazy Sunday. I woke up at noon today… I guess I needed the sleep (well that and time zone issues this week). Then I turned on the TV and started watching football instead of jumping on the trainer. The day could have spiraled out of control, and, in a way it probably did, but I just moved things backwards in the day and so far have completed two of my three tasks (bike and swim) for the day. All that remains is to clean my apartment… which is really more of a weeklong task. But I bought all of the cleaning supplies I need… so progress?

Anyhow, today’s swim was the first time in two years that I actually felt like I was making progress in my swimming. I don’t know if it was the Swedish Fish I ate before my swim (and almost let lose in the pool) or a small hitch my dad noticed in my stroke when I was home over Thanksgiving, but I was swimming far more efficiently today than I have in a long time (I can’t remember my last 7:10 500 yarder). Speaking of Thanksgiving (where I slept through my race), I traveled again this week. So starting Thanksgiving day, I’ve been gone from Boston 8 of the last 11 days, but I’ve only missed two workouts (both swims) in that time: one because my goggles broke in Jacksonville and one because there was a swim meet at the MIT pool I use. I think the reason I’ve been able to get these workouts is due to communication between me and my coach: I tell him I’m out of town and we figure out what workouts I can get in. My time in LA was focused on running as that’s the easiest thing to do when traveling.

What’s your plan for getting workouts in when you travel?

Viva La Revolution!

I have had a pretty spectacular past month. It started off with the Marine Corps Marathon (that was in October, but it was the end of October so I consider it close enough). Around the same time, the company that I work for was acquired. I had a mini-Thanksgiving with friends. I’ve gotten to know some new people. I’ve found new places to eat and drink and have fun. I won my first race ever. I had a great Thanksgiving at home. And then…
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