Sunday, September 15, 2013

In Which I Cannot Complain

This was a great week in terms of running. I spent four out of five days working in San Francisco, though, which is awesome in terms of my commute but less than awesome in terms of nutrition & cross training.

My gym is near my office, so most of the time I get in my strength work / cycling / yoga / Pilates before or after work or at lunch, and just following my normal routine usually means that I have to plan out everything I'm going to eat ahead of time, which makes eating well pretty darn easy.

When I'm working in San Francisco it's a little harder to do that for a lot of reasons. This means that my strength work this week was limited to what I did at karate, and on Friday I ate nothing but hummus, brown butter-bourbon cookie dough, and a 12 ounce filet mignon at Boboquivaris.

Also half a bottle of Syrah.

And a croque-monsieur from Tartine on Saturday.

I love this city.

We got up around 11 on Sunday to try to catch some America's Cup action down on the Embarcadero. I don't understand all the finer points of yacht racing but I am given to understand that Fly Emirates Team New Zealand is ahead by like 5 races or something, and Larry Ellison Oracle Team USA had only won one race (and was also two races in the hole already because of cheating or something). We managed to catch the 1:15 race, which the Americans won by a lot, so that was neat to see.

Winning! Actually this was the victory lap.

Unfortunately they lost the 2:15 race, also by a lot.

Is the whole thing kind of a giant, disgusting pissing contest between people who are so filthy stinking rich they have nothing better to do with their money? Yes. But, having walked through the exhibits on the boats and learned something about how they work, I have to say that I find all the physics & engineering behind it absolutely fascinating, so watching the races can be really interesting from that standpoint.

Afterwards I set out through Golden Gate Park on my "long" run for the week. My goal was to get in eight miles with good form and no pain in my hip.


It was not too shabby. Slightly faster than ideal, since realistically this is on the low side of what I'm shooting for in terms of marathon race pace; I'm still having a lot of trouble right now running my easy runs at an appropriate pace while keeping good form & keeping my glutes & hamstrings engaged. On the other hand, no hip pain. In that respect I am feeling 99.5% recovered.

So really; I can't complain too much.

* * *

Grand Total: 20 miles

    * 18 easy
    * 2 speed


a.m. 8 miles spin + p.m. karate. Spinning is getting psychologically easier for me. At first, it was worse than the treadmill, even with an audiobook, & I found myself fighting off the urge to spork myself in the eye every half mile or so. But this last Monday, for some reason, I was like "Oh, done already? Cool."


4 miles speed. 1 warm up, 3x(300m fast/100m jog), 400m jog, 3x(300m fast/100m jog), 1 cool down. This is the part where I obnoxiously complain about how my intervals were too fast (#woeisblogger). Instead of 6:11 pace they were closer to 5:45 pace, because who can sprint a 300m while also looking at hir watch and adjusting pace. With anything shorter than 800m's I find it easier to just go by effort, and when the difference between a 300m at 5:45/mile and a 300m at 6:11/mile is all of 5 seconds, you can't convince me the difference is all that meaningful.

I also got brave & wore my Universes for the 400m jog & the second set of 300ms. Have I mentioned lately how much I love running in these shoes? Switching from my Kinvaras into the Universes is a lot like what I imagine it must feel like to go from driving a perfectly serviceable station wagon to zooming around in a Ferrari. VROOM VROOM!

Mizuno Wave Universe. 3.2 ounces, 2mm drop, zero stability, extremely waddable.


Strength + Karate.


4 easy. This was the hardest run of the week. GOD, I did not want to. But I did. And it sucked. But at least it was over fairly quickly. I think I'm getting sick of my usual route (even after a two-month break from it) & that actually makes a 4-6 mile run feel longer & harder than it actually is.


4 easy. I didn't want to do this one either. I tricked myself into it by lying & saying I was only going to run 2 miles & then I would run 2 or 3 on Saturday. Then I was like, "Eh, what's one more mile out?" And, "Well, I guess we have no choice but to run the one mile back home."

I would say that at least 75% of what I've achieved in my life athletically has been accomplished by lying to myself. Never underestimate the value of lying.


Rest / be lazy. Officially I was assigned 3 easy miles on Saturday, but I wanted to keep my total for the week at 20 & wanted to be sure I was fresh & rested for my longer run on Sunday.


8 miles easy.

So. 22 next week. I've been modifying my "official" schedule each week by making Saturday a rest day & cutting the Sunday long run down to whatever I'm feeling up to. At this point, part of me feels like 8 is a big enough number that I could probably start jumping the Sunday runs up by 2 miles at a time; the other part feels like I should maybe hang out in the 8-9 range for a few weeks & up the mid-week runs a little. We'll see.


  1. Totally impressed by the 8 miler. I've been struggling to hang onto that pace. It slipped away during my half yesterday (no real regrets though).

    And I'm super jealous that you got to see the America's cup race! Very, very cool.

  2. Love the food pics! And a 3.2 oz shoe?! That's amazingly light. Great job on the 8-miler. I'd vote for staying in the 8-10 mile range for a few weeks and increasing your weekday mileage, but if your easy runs are boring you to death then maybe it's better to increase your long runs? I'm sure you'll figure it out. :)

    BTW, every time my left hip has gotten the slightest bit of achiness, I do your trick of "showing the bottom of my shoe" to the person behind me. It has cured me of significant hip pain so far (knock on wood!).

  3. Sounds like you are fully back - 8 miles at 8 min pace. Seemed like just yesterday you couldn't run a mile without writhing in pain. Nice work.

    I was at America's Cup on Saturday - the first race was chaos - the New Zealand boat came within 3 degrees maybe of tipping over/capsizing - the crowd was going wild. But it landed back right side up somehow lol. USA then coasted to the victory. I'm actually going for NZ because I love the country, and I'm not a fan of Larry Ellison. Why did SF pay anything to host the America's Cup? Ellison has $40 billion and should have forked over the hosting fees himself. But the racing was actually really exciting, it was fun to watch.

    NY is indeed awesome, you need to go back there since you haven't been there since you were 21. The best food city I've ever been to. And so many sights to see. An awesome time.

    1. Heh, yes....This whole America's Cup thing really has been a giant debacle. It's ridiculous. But the engineering is pretty amazing. :)

    2. Heh, yes....This whole America's Cup thing really has been a giant debacle. It's ridiculous. But the engineering is pretty amazing. :)