Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Back on the Wagon

Recovering from a bad race is a multistep process.  First you mourn like you lost a loved one (this will involve a period of moping around), then you look for redemption (no matter how little sense it may make,) then you go through a period of simply not caring, and finally you get back to something you love and find purpose again.

As I look back at the Boston Marathon my biggest disappointment lies in the fact that I let myself underestimate the race.  I thought I could get away with running a single marathon this year and had convinced myself that I was guaranteed a PR and another BQ.

After two days of hobbling around I started looking for BQ opportunities.  First I found a race in Holyoke that looked good (albeit a little hilly) on May 1st.  Then I looked at Providence (also on may 1st) which is quite a bit flatter.  After a few more days of just not feeling 100% I decided that it be best I focus on the trails.  I have a 52 miler (Big Horn) coming up in a month.

The last two weekends I ran on the Western Greenway; My favorite trail.  During these runs I came to terms with the fact that I may not run Boston next year (I still may run a late summer marathon if I can make it work).  I re-realized why I love running.  I love the fresh air, the scenery, and seeing what I am capable of.  This is why I am a trail runner and an ultra runner.

Back on the Wagon
It was time for my training for Big Horn to really begin.  The goal was to get 90 miles in with a 30 mile run on Saturday. The week went to plan for the most part. It was rainy at times.  I got some good hills in on Wednesday and then put in a good 5K effort at our lunch 5K at work on Thursday.  By the end of Friday I was sitting at 50 miles on the week.

Saturday's 30 miler began bright an early with 8 miles with Nichole at 6:45am.  From there I ran 4 miles to Keith's and then we ran out the to train depot on the bike path in Bedford.  Somewhere around mile 14 I knew it was going to be a long day.  While I didn't plan on going fast on this run, I was hoping I wouldn't have to push too much (this may sound silly to non ultra runners).

Luckily Keith kept the conversation going and we decided that we could take a break at mile 23.  So at just over 3 hours into the run, we stopped, sat down, and had a cup of coffee at Starbucks.  This is something that I dearly miss and was something that we used to do on bike rides all the time. Unfortunately, generally I am on a strict time schedule and rarely have enough time to take a breath, let alone sit down.

For the last 7 miles we jogged and laughed as we made the way back to my house. Tired and sore, I was glad to get in my first 30 miler of the year.

MOM's Run
Location: Somerville, MA
Date: 5/8/2016
Distance: 3.1 miles
Goal: No goal
Actual: 18:48 (6:03 / mile) - Stroller 5K PR (22 seconds) Stroller 1 Mile PR (5:53 - 1 second)
Place: 8 / 468 OA, 4/33 AG

This was the 4th year that I ran MOM's run and the 4th year that I pushed a child in the stroller.  It is a fun, but not overly easy course with a pretty decent after party.  It also is a memorial race to remember those that have passed from cancer, a celebration for those that have beaten cancer, and a celebration for Mother's day.  

My parents have walked the 5k for the last 4 years also and emailed me back in February to let me know they were in again this year.

Two years ago I ran a 19:10 at this race and set my stroller PR.  Originally I was planning on trying to break that time, but after running 30 milers on Saturday I was not sure I had it in me.

This also was Nat's first race in the stroller.  We warmed up with a 3 mile jog to Davis.  As we lined up for the race, we got near the front off to the side to make sure we could quickly get out of traffic.  We took off hard in the first mile and then dialed it back about a quarter mile in.  We clocked the first mile at 6:24.

As we turned off Highland, got out of the wind, and as we began to descend our speed picked up.  Right before the end of second mile as we turned onto Summer Street, Jesse (who was volunteering) yelled at Tim (who has run 2 marathons in the last 3 weeks), "Scot is catching you with the stroller." As we hit the hill, Tim pulled away and I pushed hard knowing their was a good down hill coming.  The watch beeped with a 6:05.

The finishing sprint - Pic Compliments of Anthony White

As I crested the hill a 1/3 of mile later, I knew I had a shot at the stroller PR.  As I started bombing down the hill I passed one guy and then Tim.  With a quarter of a mile to go I came up on another runner and Deb yelled "Scot we know him.  Go pass him." He turned enough to see the stroller and then started to sprint.  About a 1/10th of mile later I caught him and sprinted to the finish.  I had never run so hard with a stroller.  I clocked a 5:53 final mile (1 sec mile stroller PR) and set a new stroller 5K PR by 22 seconds.

As I regained my breath, I simple thought, "I'm back."

Nat chilling  Pic Compliments of RaceWire

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