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Archive for February, 2014

Post USATF XC

I am in the Denver Airport on my way back to New York. I  admit I am disappointed as to how I ran in the XC Championships. But at the same time I know I was not prepared. I have done minimal intensity work, even my long runs have been lax considering that I am also training for the Boston Marathon. But one can always hope for a miracle, well one did not appear.
I went into the race with a quad strain that had been giving me trouble on and off all year. I saw one of the best active release /chiro guys ever,  Dr. Mark Papantonio of Flatiron Sport and Spine. Holy cow Mark tore into my quad and did some serious work in a very short time, breaking up stuff that I have been dealing with all year. He saw me  last minute and I have no doubt he made a huge difference for the best on my run. He also sent me home with specific advice on what I need to get done. Thank you Mark!
The masters race had 67 female runners, 64 showing finishing time. The altitude is 5430 and at 7:30 the temperature was 57 degrees, the race started at 8:00 and in less than 30:00 the temp dropped to 39 degrees. I felt the temp drop but mostly I was feeling my rock solid locked down non-working quad. I wanted to quit after the first 2k loop, but I kept on, I was suffering. I ended up running a whole minute slower per mile that my half marathon time and within 10 seconds of my marathon pace, in otherwords slow and frustrating. But I solidly know where my fitness is at and I can decide what kind of motivation I have to fix it. I am honestly not sure as of today and I am okay with that.
A few things made me feel better. I met an athlete agent, his runner won 1st place. He said, “Heck you are at the Championship, even if you place 67 out of 68 you can say you ran in them.” That made me laugh. If I look at it in the flatlanders vs the altitude athletes. I solidly placed in the top 10 of flatlanders, but overall in the bottom third. I don’t want to do that again. I have one year to train and come back fighting, I am sure I can do it.
They are boarding the plane, next stop, home.

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Countdown to Race Time

Hilary Lorenz Cross Country Here I am in Boulder. I had a nice little spin on the Flatiron Golf Course. They really did an amazing job getting that course ready, I have not run on a grass golf course since high school; NYC XC is run through the woods on dirt with lots of up and down hills. This course is flat,  soft, and at altitude, 5400 ft. I am having anxiety dreams like crazy. I am excited to run but also afraid of humiliation. I know it is crazy, I race because it is fun, but I still fear looking bad, though today I learned  a lot of other people feel the same way.  While jogging on the course I met several masters runners, male and female all worried about being last. I wish I had an idea of what I will do. My 1/2 marathon in Sept was run at 7:19 pace, XC should be faster but the conditions are totally different, plus I had a crazy quad flare up again. I met a coach/writer from Masters Running Magazine. She asked if she could interview me, and of course I said “yes” but after the conversation I started thinking about the time I told her I hoped to run, well let me say I have never run 6k, and for some stupid reason I thought it was 4 miles, it is only 3.7, suddenly the pain of it all seems so much for acceptable.  I should out perform the time I naively told her.

If nothing else I have the good round number 30,  for my front and F45 for my back, my last year in the 45-49 group. Sucks to be at the top of the age group but I will still get my ass handed to me by those older. Today I saw the famous Kathryn Martin on the roster. I can’t wait to see her kick a lot of ass out there.

Here is my racing plan. Three loops, conservative first without being left behind,  faster on the second, and the third I will  surpass my most advanced pain threshold. I am not wearing a watch and I will just feel my body work. I hope I can sleep tonight.

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USATF XC BoulderEach year when I see the cross country championship listed I want to run, but I don’t sign up. Each year I also think that I want to train specifically for xc since it is my favorite race. This year I finally signed up, but I did not train specifically for the race. In fact with all the snow and cold in NYC, my training is not great.

My friend Mardi moved to Boulder in October from NYC  and since I cannot make any trip unless I have multiple reasons to go, this was perfect.  I also fantasize a lot about living in Boulder, running out my back door into the mountains with  my dogs, chilling out all day in flannel  drinking coffee and making prints in my storefront studio. Now I get to see what Boulder, the fittest city in the country really feels like.

The championships are run in several heats, women separate from men, masters, juniors and seniors all separate. Of the masters AG mine is the largest, the 45-49 year olds. I almost chickened out when I looked up the other’s 5k times, they range from 17:00 to 20:00 and the higher end times are at altitude. For longer races most run around a 39:00-42:00 10k. my PB is 45:00.  The exception to that would be Colleen de Rueck who at 49 ran  a 2:39 marathon, 1:23 half and 38:00 10k last year. She is still one of the fastest women around. With the $35,000 in prize money, the best will be coming out. Jenn Simpson is running, I can’t wait to watch her in the senior heat.

My plan for the race; Get to bed early, eat a good breakfast, run as fast as I possibly can and be thankful that I get to participate in such a rewarding sport. Okay, I will still be self critical but  I am aware that I am self critical and I am also aware at how lucky I am to be able to run my ass off around the country.

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