Long Run/Tempo Fail

Alternative titles for this post include:

“Holy Hell it’s windy”, “Why Abbey should buy a garmin”, and “How quitting happens”

Today, I was super pumped for the run I had planned. It was a gorgeous day for Cleveland October, a balmy 70 degrees, almost hot. I had been running “easy” all week and I was ready to unleash the beast on a 7-8 mile run, with the last 3 miles being at Tempo pace. I decked myself out in my speediest outift, Oiselle Roga shorts and my favorite Title Nine T, stashed a Gu in my pocket, filled my little water bottle since it was warm out, and set out.

It was downhill from there.

Actually, for the first four and a half miles it was quite enjoyable, and I stuck to my 9 min/mile goal easy pace. I psyched myself up for the last 3 “quick” miles, and at the predetermined (thank you, gmap-pedometer.com) point I took off like a bat out of hell.

Not a bat…Meese, actually. Baby Meese. Or Baby Mooses, I’m not sure which the correct plural is. Moosies are way cuter than bats.

Not the smartest idea for several reasons. 1. Tempo mile #1 was mostly uphill. Sure, out loud I was “shooting for 8:20’s”, but inside I was all “I know I can go faster than that”. And go faster I did. Unfortunately there was a reason #2: it was freaking windy out there. In fact, when I got home, I looked up the weather/wind speed where I live. TWENTY THREE MILES PER FREAKING HOUR! With gusts up to 30 mph! Definitely puts my run in perspective now, but while it was happening it was quite the disaster. Here’s a little play by play of what was going through my brain for those last 3 miles…

First half to 3/4 mile or so: “I’m cruising up this hill. This is nice, this is easy. I’m breathing a little hard but that’s how it’s supposed to be. Once I hit the bridge the wind will be at my back.

mile 3/4 to mile 1: “the wind is not at my back. Why isn’t the wind at my back? Why do my hamstrings hurt this bad already? I need to tone it down. 8:20’s Abbey, come on. Especially with this wind and the hills.” I hit mile 1 in 7:54. “OK good, now drop it down 30 seconds for mile 2.”

mile 1-2: “F this wind. Why is it so windy? I am hurting. But this is good, I’m supposed to hurt. Just get to the 2 mile marker and then it’s only 1 more mile home.” {Look at my form in a store front window (yes, I do that).} “Holy crap I look like I’m running slow. This sucks. Why did I start out so fast? Idiot Abbey”.

I hit mile 2 in 8:37. I started walking. My brain just quit on me. Pretty sure my heart rate was right around 1,047 at this point. Also sure my face was the color of a tomato. Good times. After about 20 seconds I found some cohones and picked it up again.

My face was literally this red when I got home. I’m only exaggerating a little bit. I wonder if this photo was edited, that really is an unhealthy color for a face to be…

mile 2-3 (really mile 6.5 – 7.5): “Oh this really blows. I hate you wind. I hate you so much. WHY WON’T YOU STOP BLOWING FOR THREE SECONDS??? Chill out Abbey, it could be this windy on race day. Why is my heart rate still so fast even though I am practiclly crawling? Why did I start out so fast? Am I this out of shape?” I hit stop on my watch and was almost scared to look down…9:22. Stellar.

Now that I’m clean, somewhat re-hydrated (it was hotter than I thought out there!) and my face has returned to its normal “irish pink” color as opposed to the “beet red” color it was when I got home, I have a little bit better perspective than I did while I was out there sucking it up. This is actually the first time I’ve attempted the long run/tempo combo, so really it’s no surprise that I sucked it up learned so much today. Lesson numero uno being adjust your time realistically for weather conditions. I’m pretty sure I still got the “tempo” benefits from this run even though I’m unhappy with what the watch showed because I was breathing really freaking hard the whole time. Unfortunately, Runnerworld does not yet have a “crosswind calculator” that I can translate my times with. A close second lesson learned today is one that I’ve learned before. DON’T GO OUT TOO FAST. I’ll probably learn this lesson again at some point in the near future, it seems to be one I can’t quite keep in the mental bank.

How to Avoid Genetically Modified Foods

I know, that was an abrupt 180, from bad runs to Non GM foods, but I’ve been wanting to share this article for a while. My parents got me a subscription to Mother Earth Newsa couple months ago, mostly so I would stop stealing theirs when I went home 🙂 I love this magazine, some of the articles are a little too sustainable for me (i.e. while I would love to be self-reliant, it just ain’t happenin anytime soon), but there are always 1 or 2 articles a month that I learn from and am able to apply to my life. This article is a great little guide for anyone who is conscientious of trying to avoid foods that are genetically modified. Check out this diagram they provide of the average grocery store layout:

That’s quite a bit of red and orange for my liking!

Photo courtesy of http://www.motherearthnews.com

I know that there have been no “studies” that prove that GM foods are bad for you, but the whole concept just gives me the willi-nillies. We’re not talking about cross pollinating folks, we’re talking about fruits and vegetables (mostly corn and soy) being grown in labratories. Changing the genetic makeup of foods (and possibly the caloric make up? Link to obesity anyone?). We need specific nutrients for our bodies to be healthy and we have no idea what nutrients we are taking out, changing, increasing, etc by genetically modifying our food and the food we feed the animals that we eventually end up eating. Making things less expensive and more time-friendly is not always best in the long run.

Are you concerned about GM Foods? Or am I just overreacting?

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