Saturday, December 3, 2011

November - By the Numbers

November 2011:
Swim: 13,000 yards (5 swims)
Bike: 176.2miles
Run: 60.65miles + 24.7miles walking
Other:  2 pilates, 3 weights, 3 yoga
Total Time: 36 hours 16 minutes

November was officially the off-season. I had my final race of the season on November 6 and then took a full week completely off. Then spent the next week doing what felt like hardly anything -- as little as I could force myself to. My mood tanks when I don't workout so this was very tough. I ended up walking a lot and doing easy yoga just to keep from getting too grumpy. In the second half of the month I finally got back to the pool after no swimming for 6 weeks (and only one swim in the 2 weeks before that - September!).  Realizing that I needed to sneak in 24000ish yards before the end of the year to reach 250,000yards/150miles was motivation enough to get going. I brought toys with me and enjoyed drilling and swimming without looking at the clock. Actually had 3 pretty good swims in a row, then 2 crappy swims. After having no interest in my bike at all for most of October I had a few more enjoyable rides (on trainer in my cozy spare bedroom) toward the end of the month. Running has been pretty pathetic. Harder than they should be given the pace. Not surprising though given the 5(ish - who knows, I'm not getting on the scale to torture myself right now) pounds I've gained in the past month. I have in my head the gain no more than 8 lbs rule of thumb from Racing Weight...but its amazing how much harder running gets with just a handle of pounds. Makes me really want to see what my running would be like if I could drop another few below where I spent this summer (a pretty happy weight - but perhaps not quite lean and mean).

Not much else to report for November really. Off-season sucks. Its hard for me to rest when I should. And gets easier for my to settle into the laziness just when I feel like I should be getting back into gear.

Something about late November, early December seems to get everyone thinking long and hard about their upcoming year. I've been doing some of that but feeling discouraged for some reason. Perhaps I need a few more weeks of unstructured time...paradoxically though, it seems like my regular routine (regular from Feb-Sep) is the thing that gets me in the mindset in which it becomes possible to think positively about future goals. We shall see...

Addendum: After posting this realized that I never wrote any sort of race report for the half marathon I ran at the beginning of the month. I was feeling cautiously optimistic heading into the race and then gave in to an uncharacteristic surge of outright optimism and fearlessness the morning of the race. This led to me abandon my realistic goal of going sub 1:50 and admit that what I was really gunning for was 1:45 (and had the times in the 3 weeks leading up to the race to think it was possible). This was a mistake. Made the same tactical error I always make (too fast in the first 3 miles - in this case something like 7:45 pace when goal average pace was 8:00 and had been very clear that first mile should be 8:15 or slower - not the 7:25 that I actually run). And blew up. It was pretty ugly. Every mile slower than the last kind of thing. Crossed the line in 1:48:24, a 3 1/2 minute PR but not even close to 1:45. Had I been shooting for 1:50 I think I would have come in faster than I actually did. Lesson learned? We'll see I guess. I felt off the whole time. Nothing like the super-hero runs I had been having in the preceding weeks. So maybe it was an off day. Maybe I screwed myself. In the week after the race I entertained the fantasy of jumping right back in and trying to go after another HM immediately. That faded though.