Monday, December 21, 2015

When the Off-Season Sabbatical takes a Sabbatical of its own...


Another comfort zone violation is in the works. I hate it when I do this to myself (well, sort of LOL).
A last-minute half marathon? Sure, why not?!
I take my off-season pretty seriously. I respect the rest/recovery/rebuilding a runner's body needs after a busy year of activity. Recently, though, I have found myself in a myriad of confusion, training dilemmas aplenty, a little bit of holiday stress, and a last-minute family vacation thrown in for good measure.

And I have been doing (what I consider) very minimal mileage, even with the Streaking (you can read about that HERE ). Most of my "regular" runs have been no more than 2-3 miles during the week (2-3 times), and I have been doing the minimal 1-mile "streaking" run on the usual days when I normally would not be running (but would have some form of cross-training on my schedule). My weekend "long runs" have been conservative as well, nothing longer than 5-6 miles in distance.

This streaking regimen has been ongoing since Thanksgiving Day....thus far (as of December 20th), I have 25 days of streaking completed. Imagine my surprise when I tallied up my streaking miles and arrived at 61 total miles! That's already three more miles than a year ago, and I still have 12 more days before the streak ends. Yikes.

Let me backup for a minute and remind you that I'm a proud University of Iowa alumni, and my beloved Hawkeyes are traveling to Pasadena, CA for the Rose Bowl. And the husband and I decided to go along with them and take the family there as well.

Necessary Rose Bowl attire
Sooooo, what's a runner to do? I'm not just packing up my running shoes (and appropriate running gear), but I found two races to do while in California. One race is a half marathon (on New Year's Eve morning), and the other is a 5K (on January 2, the day after the Rose Bowl). 

Have I been training for a half marathon? (no) But, am I excited to run a couple of races in California? (Absolutely!!) Do I have a strategy? (sort of)

I am not concerned about the 5K (there's also a 10K option); that distance is a routine distance for me and does not present any challenges unless I'm attempting to "race" it...but, hello? This is California! I want to enjoy the scenery and not worry about my finish time (besides, I will probably be meeting up and running with a friend).
Then there's the half marathon. I have run so many half marathons, I'm not really concerned about that event, either. This just seemed like it was meant to be. After all, what are the odds of finding a race on a Thursday morning? I have not run in warm weather for a few months, though, and (other than my 8-mile run on Sunday) I have not run farther than six miles since my last half marathon (in early November). I do plan to do another long-ish run (8-9 miles) later this week, and call it good. That will give me a solid week to (sort of) taper. Not ideal, but I think I'm a well-seasoned-enough runner for this kind of spontaneous event. I don't plan on racing this event either, and will take walk breaks if needed. I'm totally OK with that. Sound good?

Have you ever done a spontaneous race (or a couple) while on vacation?

I'm linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin  for the Weekly Wrap. I invite you to head over and check out their blogs (as well as the other linked blogs) to see what the rest of us have been up to.














25 comments:

  1. Hi Kim, I agree, you will be fine running both races! It was a mental thing for me before I ever ran a half before and since you're there for fun...easy peasy! Have a great time and enjoy the summer weather!!!

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    1. Thanks, #ubagesister ;-) I'm not worried either.....just wondering what kind of running clothes...tanks? shorts? capri's? I'm leaving the fleece-lined running tights at home ;-)

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  2. Hi Kim, I agree, you will be fine running both races! It was a mental thing for me before I ever ran a half before and since you're there for fun...easy peasy! Have a great time and enjoy the summer weather!!!

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  3. So many runners don't know what to do during the off season--in my case, I don't really have a choice! I wish I had a less expensive off season, though, lol. Have so much fun on vacation and have some great races!

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    1. Thank you!! I realize I'm lucky to have this kind of a "problem" to figure out. Trust me, my off-season is not coming cheap this year LOL

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  4. I have done a spontaneous half when my only long runs had been about 5 or 6 miles for a few months and I loved it. It wasn't my fastest, but i was grateful for the experience of it. You have the right frame of mind for it, just enjoy that scenery and I hope you have a great time!!It is so cool you found a race on a holiday!

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    1. I was very lucky to find both of these races. I have never run while on vacation (or, at the very least, a vacation of this magnitude). I'm certainly not afraid of 13.1 miles, I'm looking forward to the challenge!

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  5. I ran a spontaneous half last new years.

    I love run races on vacation. I always plan my vacations around races.

    You will be fine as long as you don't push it and get injured. Just take it slow and ENJOY!!

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    1. Thanks! I look forward to enjoying the weather, the views, and the fresh air ;-)

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  6. Ha you'll do great Kim and yes how can you go to Cali and not enjoy the scenery! Right? The cards lined up for you and you had no choice but to play your hand! ;) I look forward to hearing about it! Merry Christmas to you! I've really enjoyed getting to know you over the last few months too!

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    1. I have really enjoyed getting to know you as well ;-) My blogging will be hit or miss...but it will have to do. Thanks for the great link-up!!

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  7. I'm not too sure about a spontaneous half. Who does that? ;p

    Have a blast!

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    1. Well, I'm just crazy enough to think it will be a fun adventure! Some of us weirdos actually do this kind of stuff just because we can LOL ;-)#greatminds

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  8. This sounds like me. I've run numerous spontaneous half marathons. It's "my distance" (17 last year) and my running base stays at a level where I can do this. No, they can't all be PRs with this strategy, but they are always a lot of fun! Add travel and you've got a huge WIN WIN (and I hope your Hawkeyes WIN too). Thanks for linking with us, Kim. Have a Merry Christmas!

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    1. I'm lucky that my running base also can withstand this kind of stuff LOL It's humbling to look back and realize what our bodies are capable of...there was a time when I couldn't run a 5K from start-to-finish. Merry Christmas to you, too!!! My blogging is gonna be hit-or-miss next week...not much down time is anticipated ;-)

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  9. It's always fun to go someplace new (and warm) to run a race. I'm sure with your experience and base you will get through it just fine. Enjoy your trip!

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    1. thanks! I am so eager to get out of Iowa...December has been quite mild, but I am SO done with all the rain. I actually think I prefer snow....

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  10. So fun and so jealous! A race in Huntington Beach? Probably can't get much better than that! Have fun!!

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    1. thanks!! I'm looking forward to a change of scenery ;-)

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  11. Oh how fun, I hope you have a great trip! I used to do a lot of spontanious race travel and last minute vacations and they were the best. That is the great thing about keeping the body in shape you never know when the need or desire will hit ya! Good luck in the race, enjoy some warmer temps and have safe and fun travels!!!

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    1. Thank you!! It will be fun to take on a race in a different state...with much better weather than what we currently have in Iowa LOL

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  12. This sounds like a super fun trip! I love how you found the races to work in! Good luck and have FUN! Merry Christmas!

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  13. University of Iowa alumni too. Its so sad that they lost. :(

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    1. yes, a total bummer! But it was a great season, and being at the Rose Bowl was an awesome accomplishment. Here's hoping next year has a much happier ending ;-)

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