AR 50 Training Update – 3/22/12

I have roughly two and a half weeks till race day!  I’m getting excited yet scared.   This anticipation is killing me!  As I continue with my training, I feel that I am getting stronger – at least my legs.  (Warning: Narcissist moment)  I have not really felt or checked my legs, but when I just did, they look great, lean and have this shapely muscles!  Okay that’s all for my narcissistic moment.

My actual total mileage for February was 168 running miles.  That mileage is just roughly a 6% increase in mileage from January.  I’m expecting to wrap up March just about the same as February’s mileage, simply because the last 2 weeks in March is taper time.

This past March 18, I ran L.A. Marathon as part of my training.  I actually was due to do 30 miles, so I did.  We all thought it was going to rain on race day, because on Saturday, at the Expo, it was raining like a bastard.  Surprisingly, on race morning, it was not; it was actually a glorious morning!  The weather was sunny, but cool.  The strong winds didn’t start to kick in till after we finished.  Team Herman 2012 participants at this LAM, who were sporting the new Team Herman 2012 shirts, were:  Dexie (doctor did not ok her running but she walked/jogged anyway), Ela (her third marathon), Irene (running for Annelle, who broke her foot), Raciel (trying to get her marathon PR), and me.  We successfully not only met but exceeded our fundraising goal, with a total of $2,230 raised for the Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research.  We could not have done it without our generous sponsors.  My sister created my playlist music for the marathon; on the playlist, the names of our donors are mentioned, dedicating each mile to them.  The playlist also included praying the rosary (all mysteries), and a mix of praise and worship music, soundtrack from cartoons, and modern rock, hip-hop, and alternative music.  I think it was a good playlist that got me through this run.

I ran my normal pace, but was also trying to slow down to 10-10:30 or even 11 minute pace.  I managed to maintain that even pace throughout most of the race.  I typically hit the wall at mile 18, but this time, I felt great and strong even past mile 18.  At around mile 23, I stopped at the Legger booth where I saw Rhonda.  We chatted a little bit, discussing our plans for Nike Women’s Marathon in October.  I saw Mikey Lynch, and a few other Leggers whom I recognized (but I forgot their names!).  They were all very nice and friendly at the booth, helping me out with my needs.  I got back on the course and continued running till a little past mile 25, then turned around.  I didn’t want to go all the way to cross the finish line, because I planned on going back on the course and look for my sister, Raciel.  I ran back till about between mile 23 and 24, where I found Irene and Ela, but no Raciel!  They told me she was a little bit up front (I missed her!).  So I ran forward; spotting her purple cape I yelled, “Raciel!”  I caught up to her and saw her face – she looked miserable.  I knew the heat was starting to get to her.  I continued to encourage her, helping her out, massaged her hard-as-rock cramping leg muscles.  I reminded her that she can still PR if we kept running and kept our pace.  As we turned from San Vicente towards Ocean Ave., I knew we were home free.  When we got a little closer to the finish line, Raciel had her second (or third or fourth) wind, and we increased our pace as we approached then crossed the finish line.  She PRd at 5:16.  I finished my 30 mile run at 5:27.  It was awesome!  For Raciel, because she PRd.  For me, because I actually was able to run 30 miles.  After we finished, we probably walked another mile and a half before we got out of the finish line area, and walked to the parking lot where my parents picked us up.  At this point, I felt that running 50 miles seemed a little bit more achievable, if that makes sense.

I have one and a half more week of actual running training, and two and a half weeks till AR50.  One of my other excitement building up to April is that I am taking my oath as a U.S. Citizen on April 4th!  I will be a U.S. Citizen when I run AR 50!