Now that the weather is cooler and the humidity is gone, running is wonderful again!! Ok I've only run twice this month. TWICE. And I have a half marathon in less than a month?? Ooook. No but get this:
1. I've come to terms with this Half not being the Half for me. Some people can train just fine in the humidity. Maybe they don't like it, but they do it anyway. I'm looking at you Claire ;) The winter was brutal, but I kept at it. When the wind was just too icy I bought a balaclava. When the sidewalks were covered with a foot of snow, I barreled through them. But in my own mind nothing can help humidity...except running indoors. Now, next year I think I might invest in a gym membership during the summer months, but that doesn't battle dreadmill boredom. Which leads me to...
2. With a month left, I was so fed up with not being able to run, I attempted to find some sort of indoor access. I had to rule out a day pass (do these still exist?) at the Y because I wasn't sure how I'd be able to handle running 144 times around the track (to do 12 miles). I also ruled out the Pettit Nat'l Ice Center's track because of the Wisconsin State Fair burgling the parking, causing its close to the public. I finally decided on using my parents' Nordic Track which is NOT a treadmill and five billion times harder than running!!! I could only do an hour. Which in Nordo time is apparently THREE MILES??? You've gotta be kidding me. I wasn't aware at how much different the muscle usage is...it's like riding a bike basically only standing up. The bottoms of my feet killed (like peddling would do), and my quads were worked like you wouldn't believe. Overall a GOOD workout for some cross training but not such a good substitute for a 12mi run. And staring at my parents' basement wall covered in Lord of the Rings posters and Presidential Exercise Awards "signed" by Bush himself, failed in the scenery department. All I had were the soothing sounds of Ira Glass to whisk me away.
3. The humidity broke this past Sunday and I didn't have time to squeeze two hours in, so I saved it for bright and early Monday morning before work. 5am, two hours and eight minutes, a SPECK shy of 12 miles. The weather was PERFECT. The two episodes of TAL eased the time. And I felt pretty good. Except for my feet...which brings me to:
4. Shoes. I've barely put 250miles on my current shoes. Maybe 300? But seriously not enough to require a new pair. But my feet KILL. I know your feet aren't going to feel the greatest after 12 miles, but honestly?? There's no way I'd be able to take much more and there are people out there who run like 50miles at a time! They just, I don't know, HURT. The bottoms. It's not blisters...it's just the whole foot. Like in the bones. Now as much as I never wanted to admit it, I don't think this current pair of shoes was ever for me. I've had problems from the getgo. Like the outside of my arch hurting. What causes that?! So yeah, I'm going to bite the bullet and buy a new pair. And REALLY get checked this time. The girl who sold me my first shoes (my former HS classmate) did a great job. Those ASIC Cumulus ruled. But these Kayanos I picked out myself because they were $40 off. Stupid. In addition to my feet killing me, I did something to that tendon that's right on the top of my ankle. Some kind of tibial something or other. It got all super puffed out and bulgy about 3 hours after my run. Ice and wrapping it did wonders though as now it's fine. I've never hurt that part of my foot in my year and a half though, so now I'm wondering if THAT'S a shoe issue as well!
5. EXCITED ABOUT RUNNING! Buying new shoes for over $100 MAKES you into running again! I also downloaded the iPhone iMapMyRun app because I don't own a Garmin and I heard that this app is actually surprisingly accurate. I bought a little pouch thing that snaps around my waste to carry my gels and my iPhone fits there just fine...so I'll test it out one of these days...use the app as well as map out/time my run manually. Cool weather is right around the corner. Just gotta get through August and the Indian Summer of September. Then I'm golden! Ready to take running by storm once again!
6. With that said, because this Chicago Half Marathon is a wash for getting anywhere close to a PR (just have NOT trained hard enough), I've got my eyes set on possibly running another Half on November 6...8 weeks from Chicago. It's like long enough to retool my training but short enough where I won't just slack off and lose interest (see: the past few months). I've also got three other races on the docket in October: an 8K, a 10K, and a 15K respectively, in that order. So that'll be good for training too.
7. The end!