Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Reevaluating My Pace

Since it has gotten so hot and humid here in H-town, I've been really disappointed in my running pace. Really disappointed. For several weeks, I couldn't even string two miles together without walking. After that, it was hit or miss: one day I'd go out and be able to run (really slow) without walking, but the next I'd go out (really slow), my HR would skyrocket (we're talking over 200 bpm here), and I'd be forced to walk. WTF??

I keep telling myself that I just need to adapt to the heat/humidity. We didn't really have much of a spring here. One week I was pretty much running in 50-60 degrees, and literally the next week it was in the upper 70's. So I think my body got no chance to gradually acclimate. As a result, I've been trying to cut myself some slack.

But it has been really frustrating! I've been stressing over losing fitness, losing speed, losing endurance. Thinking thoughts like, "Maybe I just can't run more than a mile at a time any more...", but knowing that those thoughts don't truly make sense.

Well, now I'm frustrated because I want to train with The Woodlands FIT for the Houston Marathon. Their program starts July 5th, with a time trial to determine which pace group you should be running with. Now, I had a 25:04 5K in late April. I know that my marathon pace is going to be waaaaay slower than that, however, I want to represent what I am capable of accurately so that I am placed appropriately. I do not want to run all slow, and end up with a pace group that will train to go much slower than I am capable of. I know that I will acclimate, and I know that I will continue getting faster throughout the summer and certainly when it gets cooler my speed will almost magically (at least that's how it seemed last fall) increase.

So, I plugged that 25:04 into McMillan's Running Calculator, my old friend. It puts me at a 9:20 pace for just over a 4 hour marathon, and an 8:51 pace for just under a 2 hour half. But here is what really made me feel better:
Recovery Jogs: 10:50 to 11:20
Long Runs: 9:50 to 10:50
Easy Runs: 9:50 to 10:20

These are just about the speed I've been running since the heat arrived. Even though I'm working entirely too hard for this meager speed, it is still in line with *something* to do with what I should be seeing, and even that small knowledge is somewhat comforting.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Back from Chicago Distraction

Back from Chicago. Needed a random distraction from the heap of email I'm buried under at work, so here it is: Via Billy's blog, via Clusterflock:

Your Debut Album
1 - Go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:RandomThe first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.
2 - Go to Random quotations: http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3The last four words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
If you want to do this again, you’ll hit refresh to generate new quotes, because clicking the quotes link again will just give you the same quotes over and over again.
3 - Go to flickr’s “explore the last seven days” http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days/Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
Put it all together, that’s your debut album.

Sooo... my band's name is: Saint Paul City Hall and Ramsey County Courthouse. (Laaaaame!)

The title of the album shall be: Natural Channel to Open. (WTF??)

The album cover isn't interested in being uploaded to Blogger, but you can see it here. It is totally badass.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

To Catch a Thief

One of the buildings at my work has been closed for 2 years for renovation, and was reopened last weekend. A huge festival weekend was planned, and I worked at it both Saturday and Sunday.

So, we'd been open for about an hour on Saturday, and I was working on the main floor when I hear a man cry out, "Stop that man! He stole my wallet! He's a thief, stop him!" I looked over to see a man start running.

I immediately started chasing him, and quickly saw a route through the crowd where I could cut him off. Two other staff members followed the route he took. Sure enough, he lost them, but I saw him run behind a partition, ditch his bag and the man's wallet, and start nonchalantely walking towards the exit. I was heading him off, so I actually greeted him and then just fell in behind him and started tailing him. I looked over at a colleague and mouthed "Help." He looked back and mouthed "Help?" I nodded and mouthed back, "Help, thief." He then quickly joined me and we tailed the man together towards the exit, where we knew there were security guards. As we approached the guard, I could see that she was on her walkie-talkie, and that she was saying she didn't know where the thief had gone. I started frantically waving and pointing at the guy I was tailing, and she stopped him before he could leave.

So that no one asks, no, I don't know what the hell I was thinking, little me chasing a criminal. It was instinct: I was in my place of work, I was responsible for the people in there, therefore I chased the man. I do believe that I acted as safely as possible under the circumstances, not identifying myself or letting him know that I knew what he had just done, and letting the trained professional stop him.

But seriously, holy crap, I totally wouldn't have caught him if I hadn't been a runner!