Thursday, July 21, 2011

Week 3: Thursday- MP vs. Mother Nature

Well, it's not cold. I think we can all agree on that. haaaaa :-D Mother Nature sure loves to mix it up here in CLE. Ice, snow, hail, rain, humidity, heat...all of which you can expect to the extreme at some point on the calendar year.
Who wants to run in this?? :-)

All that just makes us that much more grateful for the perfect 65 degree sunny days. :-) But when those awful conditions fall upon us runners, we're faced with a tough decision: take it to the treadmill or take it to the road? Some runners REFUSE to step on a treadmill, and will run in just about all conditions regardless of how bad it is. I have a great deal of respect for runners with that kind of dedication. I, on the other hand, in the icy, snowy winter, am absolutely NOT that runner. Quality counts over quantity for me, and when it's icy and snowy I can't get the speed I want in my workouts. I'm slipping over ice, and trudging through the snow, and getting frustrated with my Garmin showing my pathetic pace. I know it can still be a great workout, but for me, it's not the kind of workout I'm looking for. Although the treadmill is not ideal, you can still rock out with great workouts on it. This past winter, I got a fan base at the gym because I did just about all of my training (speed training, tempos, even long runs!) on the treadmill. People would stare at me like I was a maniac...and I guess it's fair to say that most of us runners are...and we're PROUD! :-) And, once it cleared up outside, I was SO grateful to get back out on the road. The awful days really do make me appreciative of the great days!

When it comes to summer running, my philosophy is much different. I do everything possible to keep my runs outside. I just feel much more comfortable doin' my thang in the summer, even when it's SCORCHING hot like today. Maybe I'm a fool, but I also LOVE the challenge that comes with summer running. Today is a great example of the crazy LOVE I have for running and the challenges that come with it! I manage to keep the quality of my workouts even when it's hot (or at least try VERY hard to!) so it's worth it to me.

The forecast last night stated that today could potentially be one of the hottest days since 1952. 97 degrees was in the forecast. I was not intimidated by this in the slightest, but instead compelled...I had a 6 mile pace run scheduled for today and I was determined to get this one in outside! I woke up at 8am this morning, stepped into my living room (only the bedroom in my apt has AC) and it was toasty. I had a little breakfast, drank a TON of water, laced up my shoes, and was out the door (I left the Ipod at home, WOO!!). I walked to the end of my street to let my muscles loosen up a bit, and then off I went!

I didn't have a plan in mind of where I wanted to run. I was kind of leaving location up in the air, and was just goin' with the flow! I just wanted to finish under 45:00 minutes and stick around a 7:30min/mi, which is my intended 26.2 pace for both C-bus and NYC this fall.  I started out down Cedar Hill, which was a good pick-me-up and motivator that my pace was not out of reach in this tough heat. I ran around Case, and through Little Italy, all around 7:00-7:15ish pace feelin' good. Then, when it came time to climb up Mayfield hill, I slowed it down to about a 9:00min/mi and pushed. It was HARD. I was SO HOT, the hill seemed MUCH bigger than I ever remember it, and I was mentally getting worried. This would be the time I would switch a song on my Ipod to pick myself up! But, nope, I dug down into my running spirit for the courage to keep going. Once Mayfield flattened out, I picked up the pace back to about 7:20ish. I drenched myself down with water, and was doing everything possible to run in the shade where I could. As I rounded on to Coventry, there were people cheering me on and encouraging me to keep going! HAHA I felt like I was in a race!! It was so awesome! I gave a painful smile and wave to be courteous...I LOVE nice people. :-) I pushed up Coventry hill, which was painful, too, and my pace dropped again to about a 9:00min/mi. As soon as I climbed it, I saw I had 2.5 miles to go.  I just had to block out the heat and keep pushing...and I knew I'd be golden. I kept the pace around a 7:10min/mi and I kept going...past the Fairmount intersection, and then turned onto North Park. I was def. hurting, but my breathing wasn't too terrible and I felt in control. I had just a little more than a mile to go. North Park is beautiful, shaded, and I was now running down in elevation. I stuck around a 6:50-7:00 min/mi, and then was HOME! I was THRILLED that I reached my goal...and with some change! I finished in 44:34, 7:26min/mi. TAKE THAT Mother Nature!!

I was a little too thrilled after my run, and should have IMMEDIATELY gotten into an air conditioned room. Instead, I hung out in my hot living room, did some pilates, and watched the View. Then, all of the sudden, I started losing perepheral vision. I knew EXACTLY what was coming...A MIGRAINE!! I immediately grabbed an ice pack from my fridge, ran into my bedroom, cranked on the A.C., and laid down with the ice hoping it would not develop into full blown migraine. Unfortantely, it did. Thankfully, my parents live close and my beautiful and wonderful Mom was able to take care of me. When I get migraines, I'm completed debilitated. I can't see, I have nausea accompanied by EXCRUTIATING head pain and sinus pain, and my upper jaw gums were hurting super bad as well (weird?).  I was able to sleep it off, but it stunk. It's my fault though. Had I properly cooled down and hydrated that may have not happened. OH WELL! I still rocked an awesome run, and DEF. kicked Mother Nature's butt!!!! ALL without my Ipod!

Tomorrow is my rest day, and I'm happy to take it considering it's forecasted to be another scorcher! I was planning on a 5K Saturday followed by my 8 mile run, but if the weather is 90 degrees as the current forecast states, I will be moving the 5K to Sunday (or not doing it at all!). We shall see!!


  1. When I lost my vision like that and I know a migraine is about to get me, I usually have to have a bit of caffeine to avert it. Have you ever tried that? I am still impressed that you knocked out a run in that heat!!! Way to go :)

  2. Hey there! I will definitely try caffeine at the onset of my next migraine. Hopefully it won't be anytime soon!! Thanks for the tips, Becca!!