04 March 2014

Training Tuesday - Priceless Partners

This week's workouts:

Tuesday, February 25:
Was hoping to run in DC while I was there, but wasn't feeling well.

Wednesday, February 26:
Still not feeling well, so another rest day.

Thursday, February 27:
On the mend, but still not 100%, so taking another rest day.

Friday, February 28:
Another needed rest day.  Feeling much better.

Saturday, March 1:
Ready to get into my Boston training mode.  Saturdays will be "spin" days and today was such a great day for an outdoor ride.
14.98miles in 1:13:11.  Avg speed: 12.28 mph.  Avg HR: 145
*still can't get cadence to work with GPS. didn't want to waste time messing with it today but will try to take the bike out a few times this week to try to get it to work.

Sunday, March 2:
Another great day of gorgeous weather.  Training plan called for 8 miles today.  Since I hadn't run all week, I was ok not hitting the full 8.  A little discrepancy between TomTom and RunKeeper, mainly because I started RunKeeper as soon as I met up with Jason, and TomTom once we actually started running in the park.  So there was about a mile of walking warm up :)  Intervals of 3:00/0:45.
TomTom: 6.54miles in 1:21:35. Avg pace: 12:28mm
RunKeeper: 7.77miles in 1:34:05. Avg pace: 12:05mm

Monday, March 3:
Back on schedule, so today is a rest day.

Linz and I finishing 26.2 with DONNA
As I was gearing up for this week's post, I was trying to figure out which training partner to focus on. I've got my list that I planned on working through, but today was a "free" day in terms of what I had planned for when.  I have a lot of "gear" I use in my training - so far I've highlighted energyBITS, Handana, Nuun, and Ink n Burn.  Over the next few weeks, I'll also talk about my shoe loves, my favorite socks, the most amazing recovery tool, and how I fuel.

However, I realized there was a gaping hole in my plan: not one week was devoted to talking about a training partner you can't buy.  I love having the products I'm highlighting as training partners, but the best training partner that anyone can have is the one I want to talk about today.  That training partner would be: another human being!  So this week I want to talk a little about my human training partners and how much they mean to me.

Jason and I after running The PATH from The Carter Center
My original "BRF" - best running friend - is Jason.  Jason and I go way back.  Not to high school way back, but at this age, knowing someone for 10 years seems like "way back."  I won't bore you with the details of how we met, but we reconnected a few years ago when we were both living in the same part of town.  I moved to the area, and we got to chatting, and kept talking about how we should go running together.  Both of us were relatively new to running, and thought it would be great to have someone on the journey with us.  Unfortunately, we never ended up running together in the six months that we were practically neighbors!  Maybe it's all for the best... because now I count him as a valuable training partner.

Jason and I did 5 loops of the mountain!
In 2012, when I made my plan to run a race every month, Jason was right there with me.  Our first race that year was a 10K, and it was (no lie) all up hill!  It was the first time I managed to run 6.2 miles straight, aside from a few walk breaks through water stops.  Jason was the one pushing me to do this, encouraging me at each mile by breaking into the Count's voice (from Sesame Street) and letting me and all the runners around us know which mile we were at!  Our second race that year, it sleeted on us, and we tried so hard to keep warm on the short walk back to my house after the race in our race swag cotton t-shirts!  Our schedules didn't line up the next couple of months, but we were back together at the start of a race in May.  I had been more diligent about training, so Jason told me to go ahead and try for a speedy race that day.  It's definitely one of my fastest races.  We kept racing together that year, and our friendship grew stronger.  My own journey finally encouraged Jason to take on the big miles of a half marathon, so in 2013, when I was gunning for my first marathon, Jason signed up to run the Donald Half Marathon at Disney World.  It was so great to have my "original" BRF there the weekend I met my newest human training partners - #CorralG.

#CorralG - always keeping in touch!
While #CorralG is scattered throughout the country, we still keep in contact on a regular basis.  In fact, I sometimes talk more to these people than I do my own family!  Over the last year, we have virtually trained together, signed up for and run races together, and just this past weekend had another sort of reunion when 8 of the 10 of us gathered in Jacksonville for the DONNA festivities (recap coming).

I am beyond excited that as I turn my attention to Boston, I will be running with Linzie and Adam on that hallowed course, and we will be checking in with each other and training together to reach that finish line on Boylston.  I have also really valued the last 5 weeks of training and being able to have Jason join me for my long runs.  We've explored some new locations around town together, and it gives us a great chance to catch up, vent about the crap of life, and recharge ourselves for the coming week.  Jason is considering his own first full marathon, and I hope that I can continue to be there to cheer him on, no matter which finish line he chooses to cross after 26.2 miles.

Jason wondering what this post will say about him after our
6-8 miles in Piedmont Park this week.
Having someone to join me in my training - whether on a run, or virtually checking in with my progress - has made a HUGE difference in this training cycle.  I know I could do it on my own - that's how I've done a lot of my training over the last three years - but having a friend by my side, supporting me in my endeavors, makes the finish even sweeter!

Who is your BRF?

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