Sunday, January 17, 2016

Marathon Sunday

HAPPY MARATHON SUNDAY! Holy moly it has come, and it has gone. And I promise I'll be back with a full marathon recap - because we all know that I had plenty of time to formulate about 20 blog posts - but for now, let's get a dosage of our regularly scheduled Survey Sunday.

Last year's goal
And it makes total sense that this is a running survey, right?

1. Would you rather run along a beach path or on a mountain trail?
I would love to say a mountain trail, simply because the temperature and the view make a mountain trail a runner’s dream, but when I was in Colorado a couple of summers ago and I tried to run one morning, I made it all of five minutes before having to stop, walk, and catch my breath. The altitude is so different, and made running nearly impossible. And there’s something to be said about running along the beach at sunrise or sunset.

2. If you could choose the flavor of Gatorade at your next race's aid stations, what would it be?
I can only tolerate drinking Gatorade during a run, and I’m always really thankful that it is typically of the lemon-lime variety, because that’s the only flavor I can stomach.

3. If I gave you a $100 gift card to a running store, what would be the first thing that you would purchase with it?
Definitely new shoes. There is no greater joy to be found than the joy that comes from buying a new pair of running shoes. Breaking them in isn’t always fun, but a new pair of running shoes can instantly brighten my mood.
And if you ever have a bad day, new running shoes always fixes it
4. Do you prefer to follow a training plan, or wake up and decide how far and fast you want to run?
I have to follow a training plan, or at least attempt to follow a training plan, because if I wake up and decide how far I want to run, I won’t be running anything longer than eight or nine miles. So, when the training plan I’m following calls for a 14-mile run, I suck it up and do it, or else I’ll be paying for it later.

5. Would you rather start your run with the uphill and end on the downhill, or start with the downhill and end on the uphill?
Oh, definitely start with the uphill and end on the downhill. I’ve actually had experience with the other (Enfield hill, I'm talking to you), and it’s the worst. All you can do is laugh about it when you’re already 12 miles in and you’re having to tackle this giant hill before you can cross the finish line.
From the top of the hill
6. When you can't run, what type of cross training do you choose to do?
Swimming! I’m going to be doing a whole lot of that these next couple of weeks. I love swimming because not only is it a great total-body workout, but it’s extremely low-impact, and after months and months of pounding the pavement, that’s exactly what I need. It’s relaxing, yet challenging, and I just might invest in a waterproof iPod so that I can listen to music while I crank out the laps.

7. What's your preference – out and back or point to point loop runs?
These are both equally bad in my opinion. Out and back is usually terribly boring, especially in Houston, and having recently completed a couple of three-loop courses, there is nothing more demoralizing than running yet another loop of the exact same course. There’s not even any new scenery to look at, so I’m going to have to go with neither.
Three loops of Memorial Drive later
8. If you could recommend ANY running related item to a new runner it would be a ... ?
A really good pair of shoes. You might have to spend a little more on them (I always have to buy the more expensive shoes because I need the extra support), but I promise you'll thank yourself later. I'd also recommend a foam roller. It hurts so good.

9. Do you ever see any wild animals while out on your runs?
The wildest animal I will ever see on any of my runs is a raccoon. I’ve seen a couple of them over the past six or seven months, and they always inspire a sudden burst of speed.

10. Ever gotten lost while out on a run?
I have definitely gotten lost while out on a run. Maybe not in Houston, but when I was in Austin, running around Town Lake for the first time, I will admit that I got a little lost. How, I’m not entirely sure, as it is a loop, but you have to remember that I am directionally challenged. And I actually love getting lost in a new city on a run, because sometimes that’s when you discover some of the most hidden gems.
New York City runs
11. If you could have one meal ready and waiting for your each time you got home from a run for the next 30 days, what would that be?
Oh man, what a question! Lately, after a run, all I’ve wanted is a bowl of Chobani yogurt with my homemade granola and chocolate chunk mix-ins. Not a sandwich, not vegetables, not fruit, but yogurt and chocolate. Just the thought of it puts a little extra pep in my step!

12. Capris or shorts ... what do you run in most often?
Living in Texas, I typically run in shorts, even in the wintertime. It rarely gets cold enough to really bundle up, and it doesn’t take me long to really start sweating, even if the temperatures are in the 30’s, and especially if the sun is out.

13. At what mile (or how many minutes) into your run does your body start to feel like it is warming up and ready to go?
Probably after three miles is when I really get into my groove. The first couple of miles are always tough, but once I hit the three mile mark, I’m usually good to go. That’s not always the case, but for the most part, three miles is when I know whether it's going to be a good run, or a tougher run.
This was one of those tougher runs
14. What do you do with your key when you run?
Typically the shorts I wear have a zipper pocket where I can safely zip up my key. If I’m wearing the one pair of shorts that does not have a zipper pocket, I stick it on a shoelace before lacing up my shoes. However, check back this week for a product review related to this very issue!

15. If you could relive any race you have done in the past, which one would it be?
Probably the San Francisco half marathon. I loved every single thing about that weekend, and I will use any excuse that gets me back to that beautiful city.

16. What type of run is your least favorite type of run?
S P R I N T I N G. So anything less than a 10K is not something I necessarily look forward to. 5K’s are really hard for me because I want to average a faster pace than I do for the longer distances, but it’s hard to maintain a faster speed for three miles. I always end up starting them way too fast, and I have to slow it way down.

17. What has been your biggest motivation lately to get out the door to get your run on?
The Chevron Houston Marathon! Because if I didn’t put in those training miles, I’d be hurting a whole lot more than I am right now.

18. When you go for a run, do you leave right from your front door or do you drive somewhere to start?
Most of the time, I just leave right from my door, but if I’m running anything greater than 10 miles, I typically drive out to Hermann Park to complete my run. I never get bored when I’m running over there, and the scenery is a whole lot prettier than it is in my neighborhood.

19. When running in daylight, are sunglasses a must, or an annoyance?
I actually never wear sunglasses when I run, and I would much rather wear a hat. Sunglasses are just one more thing for me to worry about, and because I’m usually a headband wearer, sunglasses don’t always work.
National Running Day 2015
20. When you get tired, what keeps you from quitting?
When my legs get tired, I run with my heart. Does that sound cheesy? Actually, if I’m really getting tired on a run in my neighborhood, I have been known to plop down in a neighbor’s yard and collect myself for a few moments before finishing up my run. But if I’m running a race, my competitiveness and determination is what drives me. I feed off the spectators, and I think about that million dollar smile I can flash while holding up my medal. 

And that's all I've got. Like I said, I'll be back with a full race recap, but for now, I'm closing down the computer and taking a nap. I'm absolutely beat. But in the very best way.

1 comment:

  1. Excellent and very effective article.Thank you so much for your thought sharing with us.