October and November were tough running months for me. It took quite a few weeks for my body to return to normal after our 50K, and when I did, I was having some knee issues that were persisting despite a huge drop in mileage. Then something magical happened, we found our treadmill on Kijiji. I was so excited. It was a great deal and it meant that Lexie and I could run simultaneously in the mornings. However, the day after I picked it up, I threw out my back. This turned out to be a blessing in disguise. It put me out for 7 days, which it turns out was exactly the amount of time I needed for my knee to start feeling better. Since I have returned, I have been feeling great and upping my mileage slowly to prepare myself for the next marathon training cycle (more on that to come in the coming weeks)
(Since I started writing this post and right now when I'm finishing it, I tweaked my back again. Doing what you ask? MOVING THE TREADMILL! The struggle is real)
As my back began to feel better, I was starting to crave a running challenge. I haven't raced or trained with a plan since September, and despite my mostly Type B personality, it was starting to bore me. So I joined the Runner's World Holiday Running Streak. Essentially it entails running everyday from American Thanksgiving to New Years Day. In order to keep the streak alive you must RUN (not bike, walk, hike, rollerblade, or hoverboard) at least 1 mile each day during the given time frame. I am happy to report I completed the streak and enjoyed it so much that I continued it on past the official ending date. I made it to 55 days (November 27-January 20), but decided to end it when my back started hurting again and I realized marathon training is about to kick off again (more on that later). I usually did two one-mile runs a week, sometimes 3. The other days were usually 3-5 miles with a 6-10 mile run thrown in on the weekends (including a 10 miler on a treadmill during the Ice Storm of
In my extensive 2-year running career, 2013 was by far my highest mileage year. According to my Garmin connect website, I ran 926 miles. I am often guilty of not charging my Garmin/forgetting my Garmin/running out of battery on my Garmin and using Lexie's. I also ran on the treadmill a lot, both at work and at home. So I am estimating my yearly total for 2013 to be about 1400-1600 miles. I'll take it. I think this year might be slightly higher as I plan on marathon training for most of the year and keeping the mileage high.
There are three major ways Lexie and I differ in our running. One, she is faster. Probably because she is obsessive about hitting her workouts properly, and I have issues with doing what I'm told. Two, she hates running on the treadmill and I somewhat enjoy it. Three, I LOVE to race, while she saves her racing dollars for races she can PR. So to finish off the official portion of the run streak I decided I would run the Running Room Resolution Run. This is a fairly popular run in Canada, it is done on either December 31st or January 1st, and comes with a "free" running jacket (it costs $50 to register), which if I look into the depths of my soul is probably the reason I wanted to run it.
|The "Free" jacket|
In case you live somewhere other than Ontario/Don't have Facebook/Were just born, we have a had a coooooooooooooold few weeks in Southern Ontario. December 31st was one of those days. Lexie, because she is the best running partner a husband could have, wanted to come along and cheer, so we bundled the kids up, I put on my warmest running gear and we headed off.
I was slightly disappointed with the organization of the run, I guess I expected it to be more of a race, when really it was more of an organized run. There was no starting line, or finish line, rather we just started in the parking lot of a church across from the Running Room store, and finished in the same parking lot.
The start was rough a it was 200 or so people all trying to run down the same sidewalk. I made the classic middle of the packer mistake and started too far back, meaning I had to walk/run this first few hundred metres when really I could have been running faster. Eventually I made my way around the walkers (not to be confused with zombies from The Walking Dead) and settled into a nice pace. I ran the 10km version of the race, which was two laps of the same same 5km loop. The course was nothing special, just around some residential streets in Guelph. Because of the the wintery weather we had, the sidewalks were covered is slush/ice/snow which made for a very slippery run. Only a few of us were doing the 10K so by the time I had hit my second lap, the sidewalks had opened up. The run finished on a nice downhill and I finished in about 53ish minutes which is a pretty good 10K time for me. There was no official time, and my Garmin started acting up at the start, so that is an estimate.
Here is a picture of me after the race. I'm not surprised, my eyes are just frozen open.
This picture was taken on January 2nd, the coldest running day I have ever experienced. We did 5 miles and called it a day.
It was a great way to finish of a great year of running, and a great excuse to eat SO MUCH sushi for our fancy New Years Eve dinner. The run streak was fun, and I am hoping next year I can extend it to a solid 100 days.
Check back soon for information on our 2014 running goals! Here is a hint: