One month down! This first four weeks of training were a bit of a whirlwind. Between the move and starting a new job, this first phase flew by. I was able to stick to my training plan, but I was very conscious about the fact that I was mostly just going through the motions. This made me question if this was the right time to be tackling a marathon, but ultimately I think this was probably pretty normal for base building. I’ve kept up running pretty steadily since my fall marathon, so building my base was really just about getting my mileage back up rather than getting my fitness back in line.
Overall, I think I’m in good shape to begin adding in speed work. I really need to take some time to determine my race goal so I can tailor my paces to fit my goal. I haven’t had much time to reflect on that, so for these next few weeks I will be basing my paces on my current fitness level.
As the base building phases usually goes, my runs have been mostly uneventful. Christmas Eve was the exception. I knew the forecast was calling for 100% rain, but I was hoping it would be light and intermittent. Sure enough, I woke up to rain. I didn’t want to do a long run on Christmas morning and I know the weather at Shamrock tends to be crazy, so heading out was my only option. The temperature was around 40 so luckily it wasn’t freezing, but it was also cool enough to wear my running raincoat. Since it was raining and it was Christmas Eve, I skipped my run club in favor of running solo. I ventured out figuring that the rain would taper off over the course of my run. I don’t mind running in the rain, but this was a very steady rain – the unrelenting, soaking, type of rain. I headed into a neighborhood across the street to make the most of my mileage and it continued to rain and rain and rain.
Almost an hour into my run I was drenched and a little lost. I found a main road and was able to determine which way back through the neighborhood I needed to go to get back. After about an hour my arms were starting to feel cold. I don’t think my rain coat was leaking (in fact, I know it wasn’t), but I felt like I was getting wet. I think in reality there was just nowhere else for the water to go and it was weighing down my jacket and making it stick to my arms. I decided to just run a few more miles and cut my run short, but about a half mile after making that decision I turned around and headed home. I don’t think I’ve ever cut a long run that short, but the last thing I wanted was hypothermia for Christmas. After I got inside, I hung up my coat, pants, hat, and socks. Despite my pants being moisture wicking, when I went back in the evening to get them from the hook they were still very wet. I was disappointed to cut the run short, but I think it was the best decision. It was also a cutback week, so probably not a big deal.
Christmas weekend was a good one. My office was closed Friday and Monday so I had a nice long weekend. We kicked off the weekend on Thursday night by visiting some of the houses on the Richmond Tacky Light Tour with my sister and brother-in-law.
This was the first time in 6 years we didn’t have to travel for the holiday and, instead, our parents came to us. My parents came to town on Friday and stayed with my sister and brother-in-law. Friday night we all went out to dinner together. My in-laws arrived to stay at our house on Saturday evening just in time for Christmas Eve dinner.
Christmas morning, we headed over to my sister’s house for brunch. Technically, Kevin and I were hosting the brunch for his family and mine, but my sister’s house has more space for entertaining and more seats at the dining room table! Kevin & I cooked two kinds of quiche, biscuits, sausage, and banana bread. My mom provided a fruit platter and we had some crumb cake.
After brunch, we had some mimosas and opened gifts.
It was the first time we have spent Christmas morning with both families and I think everyone had a good time.
I received some great gifts this year and, as usual, my in-laws helped check off a few running necessities.
I had some great running experiences in 2016, but I can’t say I’m sad to see the year come to a close. I am looking forward to all the excitement of 2017 including my first spring marathon and running the Chicago Marathon. I am also still planning to launch my new blog in the new year and I’m hoping that will bring back some new life and inspiration into my blogging.
I hope everyone has a safe and happy new year!