Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Runner Q&A

race medals
2011 Race Medals. 
Click to view larger and for a list of
which medal is from which race.
I've seen a couple variations of runner Q&A posts floating around the running blogosphere, so here's my version of them mashed together.

Questions asked by Miss Zippy (2011 in review):

Best race experience? Soldier Field 10 Mile - My first longer race that went really well for me. No pains, no losing steam - I took it slow and was able to pick up my pace in the last few miles and finish feeling awesome and strong and powerful and inspired.

Best run? Running around Boston. I was visiting BFF Ultra Vera and she had to go to work, so I just laced up and went out and explored. I had my phone with me so I could find my way around (and take pictures). I realized Vera was right - going out for a run is a great way to explore a new town. 

Best new piece of gear? My Garmin watch. It's not perfect, but I'm a numbers nerd. Plus I love running by heart rate and not chasing some arbitrary pace. 

Best piece of running advice you received? Run by effort, not pace. It forces me to take my slow runs slow, and I know that I'm pushing myself enough during other runs. Also if I race by heart rate, I know that I've given each race my all, and I never have any post-race regret thinking I might have been able to do better. If I ran by my heart rate, I knew I ran smart and achieved the best time my body could for that day. 

Most inspirational runner? BFF Ultra Vera. She ran a freaking ultramarathon - 56 miles - on the other side of the world. And will probably do it again. Why? Well ... why not? In her own words, she wants to see what her body is capable of. Have you pushed your body to the limit? I know I haven't. But she inspires me to keep trying. 

From StrengthRunning.com via Adrian at ChaseFear.com (edited down from 11 questions)

Why are you running?  BFF Ultra Vera encouraged me to sign up for a half marathon two years ago. I don't remember why I listened to her, I guess it was something to do. It was around New Years, so it seemed like a good resolution. Eventually (like ... over a year later), running stopped feeling like a chore. I started really loving it and now I look forward being able to lace up and head out. 

Who is in your running support network? BFF Ultra Vera of course, but in the past few months I've been able to connect with some really great local running groups - the F'N Runners and the Yankee Runners (via Monday night runs at the local running store, although I will likely train with them in 2012 for the Chicago Marathon and possibly a spring half).

How do you stay motivated when you don’t want to run? Make plans to meet up with other runners. That is what gets me out of bed at 6am on a Saturday when the temps are in the 20s. That is what gets me to put on running clothes before I leave the office and run 4-6 miles on Mondays and Wednesdays, in the dark and probably cold.

How are you improving on your past training in order to get faster? Actually stick to a training plan. For my first half marathon, I did not do a very good job sticking to the plan I picked out. And come race day, it showed. Since then, I have done a better job sticking to training plans, and guess what, race day is a lot more enjoyable. I'm also starting to work on additional things to improve performance, such as diet, losing weight and building strength.

Also ... I'm still debating which domain to buy for my blog. These are still in the running. (Get it? Running?) I feel like each of these somehow represents ME. (And plz don't steal kthnx.)

RunForPi.com - love of numbers and desserts
HalfCrazyGinger.com - my hair color
PastyRunner.com - with red hair comes pale skin
MagMileRunner.com - reference to my name and also Chicago (thanks to Amanda for the suggestion)

I'll just keep mulling it over ... 

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