Sunday, October 13, 2019

No Breaking My Stride

Sometimes you just gotta beat Momma N at her own game.

Case in point, the weather. Just go ahead and try to taper through it (as if simply running through it wasn't tough enough).

I'm no stranger to oddball weather (ahem, born and bred Iowan here), but 2019 has really thrown us some curve balls. What's a runner to do (or anyone, for that matter)? You face it, you adapt to it, and sometimes you adjust your plans accordingly. But you do not let it defeat you. Am I right?

But, first things first...

Welcome to the Weekly Run Down! I love hosting this link-up with Deborah (from Confessions of a Mother Runner). If you write a fitness-based blog, you're invited to join the party. The link-up opens at 1:00 (EST) on Sundays and remains open through noon on Monday. We love reading about everyone's weekly fitness endeavors, training highlights (or low lights) and race recaps. We ask that you link back to both hosts, and we encourage you to read/comment on the other linked blogs as well...please don't link-drop & dash ;-)

Monday - Switch play #1
A chilly morning (43F), and a somewhat tired body, beckoned an easy start to my day. The temps were forecast to be much warmer by afternoon (mid-60F's), so I opted for a couple miles of power walking through the hilly 'hood. Besides, who needs coffee, for a warm-up OR a wake-up...not me (LOL).
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Yes, that's a puffer vest and a fleece headband
...and the run happened after work. Another #nevermissaMonday run done and deposited into the MCM bank. It was a paradox, though. The temps were near 70F, but with the cool (and rather damp) breeze it didn't feel all that warm. I also kept the run easy...instead of the recent Monday 4-milers (with surges, tempos and strides), this run was a simple three miles. Nothing fancy; nothing fast. And I was fine with that. I'm tapering, remember?
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A Monday run minus the reflective gear!
Tuesday - active rest/recovery for the win
Another chilly morning. Thankfully, it was an active rest/recovery day. Don't forget, there had been an 18-miler, just a few days prior, and 16 hours spent in the backseat of a car for our road trip to Michigan over the weekend. Nothing felt cranky or achy, but I could tell things were "off." Not a huge surprise, after all, given all the crazy miles in recent weeks. A 1.5-mile morning walk with Max was a perfect start to the day, even if we had to stop at almost every lamppost to sniff/mark (Max, not me LOL).
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Max thinks the cold morning temps are ridiculous, too
Later, I had a #lightbulb moment....I realized my body had not had the benefit of the usual biking as it had in prior weeks. The weather has been so rainy and windy that I've shunned my bike and stayed inside more than usual recently. The weather did warm up (somewhat) as the day wore on, though. Barb and I met up, after work, and took on a half marathon of sorts (via our wheels).
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Hi there Gustavas...remember me?
Wednesday - #5at5
And yet another somewhat cool (50F) and damp morning! This "transitional" weather has not been very transitional, and I'm finding myself confused as to what to wear. I opted for capri's and a light 1/4 zip jacket (with a tank underneath). I did feel chilled for the first couple miles, but once we turned and headed back on our 5-mile loop (and had the wind behind us), things were fine.
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The stars were shining so bright at 5:00...
Thursday - opting inside
More rain! With the marathon less than three weeks away, I'm not too keen on doing any heavy duty speed work, nor do I want to do any aggressive strength training at the moment. I decided to compromise, and do a HIIT workout on the good old trusty staircase:

***5 sets***
*10 flights of double-step climbing
*10 burpees
*10 push-ups

The five sets took me less than 25 minutes, and there was a serious sweat going. All in all, it amounted to a solid full-body workout, with plenty of cardio, and some good speedwork (via the simulated hill of the stairway). Triple win!
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back on the stairway
Friday -Switch play #2 
In another attempt to outsmart Momma N, Barb and I (rather spontaneously, as of Thursday evening) opted to do a long run Friday morning. The temps were cold (41F when we finished) and mucho breezy (18MPH wind), but the forecast showed even colder (and windier) weather arriving Saturday morning. These suddenly-cold temps are SOOO tricky to figure out, in terms of running gear. Throw in a long run (this particular one was 10 miles), and it's anybody's guess as to what will feel "perfect" for an extended period of time outside. I went with a flannel base layer, a flannel-lined 1/4 zip jacket and a fleece vest (and just regular running tights), and I was comfortable. Actually, I never felt cold (other than my face, while running into the wind) nor overheated. We ran the 10 miles with an average 10:20 pace, so that felt good, too. It's pretty crazy when a 10-miler doesn't seem like a big deal, especially early in the morning (we started at 5:00) on a work day. Marathon training really does a number on you LOL.
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My last long run, in the dark, for a very long time
Saturday - more active rest
Yep. Running those 10 miles on Friday morning was pure genius...because it was 30F at wake-up and the wind was even stronger. Holy Brrr, Batman! I'm no stranger to cold weather, but these winter-like temps are arriving a bit too early. The hubby and I took Max out for a 2-mile walk, and that was all she wrote. This was my first Saturday morning to sleep in since I can't remember when...and, get this, my body didn't even wake up "early" like it usually does. Apparently, that sleep was well-earned.
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Ummm...where did Fall go???
Sunday - Run for the Roses 10K
Yes, I had a race this weekend! Doesn't everyone schedule in races and call them "training runs?" As this post goes  live, I'll be headed the Run for the Roses 10K (Ames, IA). I'm not shooting for a PR, but am hoping for a solid tempo-ish performance. Temps are forecast to be 41F and sunny at race time (10:00), so hopefully I will have Momma N's blessing on my side. Check back later...I'll update this post after the finish line...
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***UPDATE***The race was windy, hilly and chilly, but went far better than anticipated. How does a new 10K PR sound (with a bonus 1st place AG)? Race recap coming soon...
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So, despite the constant tug-of-war with Momma N, I'm feeling pretty accomplished in what all went down this week. Running miles totaled out at 24 (including Sunday's 10K). Walking was a meager 12 miles (but there will be more Sunday afternoon). Biking has been pretty hit/miss with the weather, but I did get 13 miles in the saddle, so there's that (I may do a few mile with Gustavas Sunday afternoon as well). Thursday's HIIT was legit, though. As much as I embrace Taper, I will admit it is difficult to scale back after so many weeks of (near) constant action. It is necessary, none the less, so I'm being a good girl and honoring the process.

In case you missed out, here's what down on the blog:
Weathering the Week
The Allure of a Themed Race

In other news:
Friday Fashion Flair. Friday was a chilly day in Iowa, especially with that psychotic wind. And here I thought it was autumn...Anyways, I opted for some warmth, via this Aztec-print flyaway sweater. What would you pair it with...a grey top (to coordinate with the multiple shades of grey in the sweater's pattern), or would you go bold (like, for example, with a red punch of color)? As always, feel free to join the an Instagram pic, grab the hashtag (#FridayFashionFlair) and give me a tag (@runningonthefly). Easy-peasy!

The #pushuptober challenge is still going strong! 10 push-ups every day in October.
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...and this guy, Eliud Kipchoge...what a beast! Did you see his phenomenal finish (it's HERE)? I am just in awe of what he accomplished. I have run a handful of sub-2 HALF marathons, but this guy ran twice as far and twice as fast...and finished with a huge smile of his face.
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So, there you have it...another week down, and another week closer to the Marine Corps Marathon. Yikes, the #ish is getting real...we're two weeks out from the start line!

Enough about me...tell me something about YOUR week. Any great training runs? Fabulous workouts? Cold, winter-like weather?
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  1. Oh my goodness, we've had 40s but not 30s yet. TOO SOON!!!!

    Good luck on your 10k today!

    1. This "autumn season" has been a total joke thus far LOL Seriously, I hope all the heat haters are happy ;-)

  2. Congrats on a AG win & PR!Thankfully we've been treated to some great Fall weather, not yet winter-like, but yes, figuring out what to wear as the seasons change is hard every single year!

    I'd say you're hitting your stride.

    1. Thank you, Judy ;-) I know how to dress in the cold (especially when it's been cold for a few weeks or so), but this constant pinging back & forth is CrAzY!

  3. Yay for tapering! And huge congrats on that AG win. Not sure that counts as tapering. ;-) I hope you have cool weather for MCM but I’m sure it won’t be as cold as you’ve been getting!

    1. Well, I was hoping to run this race strong, like a tempo-paced ordeal, since I didn't do any speedwork this week. I was really surprised how fast I was able to run this because the hills were non-stop and the 15mph wind was brutal. Certainly hoping for something warmer than this at MCM ...fingers crossed!!

  4. Congrats on your PR! But should you be pushing so hard during a taper?

    1. IN all honesty, it really didn't feel like I was pushing myself. I was hoping to run strong (without over-exerting), and things felt good. I had glanced at my Garmin a few times, more to monitor distance, but didn't realize a PR was happening until I saw the clock above the finish line.

  5. Great job on the 10k!

    At least Iowa still had a day in the 70's! We had a terrible OCTOBER snow yesterday for my 20 miler, not fun. It should never snow before my birthday (10/14). I feel like we're off to a bad start!

    Enjoy the taper!

    1. We drove up to NE Iowa for a wedding yesterday, and had snow flurries! What the WHAT??? Some of our afternoon temps were nice, but the morning temps have been much too cold for my taste....UGH. Not ready for winter!

  6. CONGRATS on the 1st place AG for the 10K AND PR! Wowhooo!! And wow, look at all that change in weather this week. Hot and cold -- fall is here for sure.

    1. Our weather has been whacked all year. I'm not wishing for winter, but it would be nice to have some consistent weather, even if it's colder than I prefer. This roller coaster weather is crazy!

  7. My goodness, look at you all wrapped up! And Kipchoge runs exactly three times as fast as me!! I was running while he was finishing (I didn't believe it would start at the advertised time and didn't want to put my run with friends back) but our running chums at home messaged us to let us know he'd done it!

  8. Wow look who is totally crushing it this week! I'm really excited for you and look forward to reading about your race today. Congratulations! It is tough to figure out what to wear on these back and forth days. We are in the 50's early morning so that's perfect for me right now

  9. I do not like to see you in winter clothes!!

    Congrats on the PR and AG win.

    Enjoy the taper.

  10. Momma N was definitely in rare form this week. She decided that Winter weather would be appropriate for Chicago this weekend, lol. Oh well, we all know she's crazy anyway.

    I woke up this morning to hear about Eliud Kipchoge and I'm still in shock. Just the ability to run that fast for so long, and his splits were so consistent too!

  11. Hooray for 10Ks ! I was racing on Sunday. Great job on that shiny new PR! It was 43 degrees for my 10K, and now I see the weather for upcoming Sunday (my half marathon day) will be a high of 70's and lows in the upper 50's, with rain. Oh man, let's hope that weather system moves on past!

  12. Your race is getting so close! I agree - it's so crazy when 10-11 mile runs don't seem bad or long at all - once you've done 18-20 mile runs! lol

  13. Eluid Kipchoge is a total beast. Like I don't even think he's human lol. He's amazing. And inspiring.

    Congrats on your award and new PR! That's a fun accomplishment! I always race during training and call it "training runs." ;-)

    Our weather has also been up and down, but not quite as severe as yours. We had weather in the 60s for a bit in September and then it went back up to the 90s and high 80s and this past weekend back down to the 60s. I'm kinda excited that colder weather came earlier because I'm hoping that means the chillier weather is coming sooner too. Down here I live for that stuff!

  14. Congrats on the new PB and AG win! Training is doing good things for you! And it's a day ending in the letter 'y' so of course we need to have wacky weather. It's normal now, right?

  15. Again, Im jealous of those cooler temps. Look what they led you to: a PB and Age Group victory! So awesome - congratulations. At what point do you think you have to give up outdoor cycling for the winter? I imagine wind, ice and lower temperatures would factor in at some point. :(

    Kipchoge is out of this world. Not only is he fast and talented, but he seems so humble and positive. That makes me respect him so much more.

  16. It's definitely too early to see such cold temps - could Mother N let us enjoy the fall before rushing in winter?!

    Congrats on your 10K and AG win! You just continue to rock your running!

    Just no words for Kipchoge - truly amazing!

  17. It really got cold fast for you! But as usual you still figure out how to get your workouts done! Huge congrats on the 10k pr and award! That must have been a really nice treat mid-training cycle.

  18. I agree that the winter weather arrived too soon. I am not ready for it. Congrats on AG win!!! I am pretty amazed at Eliud Kipchoge too.

  19. Smart idea to move that long run to Friday! And way to go during that race. Congrats on that PR and 1st place AG finish :)

  20. It is most definitely getting real for you! I think you'll love the MCM course. Love that pic of you and Max.

  21. Races as training runs are a great idea - congrats on an AG win! I like your flexibility with workouts and doing a HIIT workout indoors when it rained!

  22. Congrats for the 10K and PR. You rock! I love the positivity in your voice when you started the post...Many times things don't go our way...but we adapt...