Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Last Dance

Today was my last workout before the Chickamauga marathon on Saturday. Ready or not I am trained. Now only 2 more days of not getting hurt or sick. Kids keep doing stuff like sneezing and coughing and saying they are sick. I know they are just picking on me but they better keep their runny noses away from me.

My plan this morning was an easy 10 miles--yesterday I had a 7 mile general aerobic pace run and it was very easy. This morning though I found I had a text from my bike honey. She was dangling an easy short ride in front of me and cheater that I am I gladly accepted.

Only problem was that it was very cold today. Okay, right, sorry, very Georgia cold --my car said 32 degrees. That is cold for November in Atlanta. It was probably high 30's low 40's for our ride. That is pretty perfect running weather but not so for the bike.

I spent the better half of my morning before meeting Steph trying to figure out what would be most appropriate attire. See, I've got running clothes, I've got ski clothes and I've got hiking clothes. Warm bike clothes I do not have. I dressed in my favorite running Nike tights. I never wear the padded bike shorts anyway--though I have a pair-- so I am okay with running tights to ride in. I have found the upper limit of my comfort level without a padded crotch is around 30 miles. No comments please.

Finding the right top proved more difficult. I have extra anxiety about bike attire because of Wes, my brother in law who does the criteriums and buys himself $400 jeans. My sister, his wife, has told me that for the bike people that it is all about the outfit. See, this is most definitely not the case with runners. Anyone who has toed the start line at any race can tell you that.

I settled on my underarmour turtleneck--I call it my scuba shirt--and a ski fleece. I had a hat on too but ended up ditching it. Then I also brought a light weight technical running top, my sleeveless bike jersey, my Nike windbreaker--I call it my Discobreaker cause it is pink and shiny-- and 2 hats.

I ran before Steph got there. I decided immediately that I needed mittens. So I ran over to Kohl's and bought some mittens. Much better but after that first mile I was dying I was so hot. The run ended up being 3 miles at an 8:03 pace. My plan was marathon pace but I should have started Garmin after I warmed up. To get to close to marathon pace I had to run the other 2 miles more in the 6:30-7:30 range. So not exactly a marathon pace run. Oh well. Short and sweet. Marathon pace, I guess, will be a bit of surprise. The minutes will fall where they do.

I was so freaking hot after my run that I ditched the fleece and went for the Discobreaker. The mittens I kept. This proved a pretty decent combination. I was comfortable, even a little warm at the end. But my toes were Popsicles. Maybe just some warmer socks next time? Steph suggested plastic bags per her husband but I am thinking he hasn't heard how important the outfit is otherwise he would know that plastic bags are not tres bike chic.

Anyway we did about 20 miles. I think pace was around 15mph. I forgot to stop Garmin at many lights. At rate we certainly weren't going to break any records but it was a great ride. I'm glad I got it in.

Now? 2 full days rest. I should also mention that my appetite is out of this world. I am eating good; just way too much. I am thinking I might not even need Gu's as I am fairly certain by race day I will have reached camel status. Only my food store will be on my stomach, ass, thighs--basically everywhere but my back or unfortunately, not my chest.

Good luck to anyone else who is reading and will be out there Saturday at Chickamuaga. And good luck to Charlie at Richmond-- yeah, only 2 weeks after Marine Corps. He is only a little insane. And, yeah, I respect that.

Psst: Race goals . . .
1) To finish
2.) To PR-- sub 3:42
3.) Under 3:40 (okay really, close to 3:30)

Week's totals:
Run: 41 miles--assuming I finish the marathon
Bike: 45 miles
Swim: 1 mile

We are doing the whole See Rock City and Ruby Falls and the Chattanooga Choo Choo and renting a cabin for the weekend. Don't know if I'll have internet or not so I may not post until Monday.


  1. Good Luck this weekend!

    And, by the way, I've never spent more than $200 on a pair of jeans!

  2. Good luck this weekend. Kick your previous PR's arse!

  3. I'm the one who should be getting the "good lucks" for the weekend. I am getting the Husky from Hell!

  4. I didn't realize that we went that far yesterday! Sorry so slow - faster next time.

    Yes, you need Gus and/or gatorade. The fuel is helpful - will maybe stave off pain or distract you from it for a little while.

    Good luck - we will anxiously await your report and photos from family trip.

  5. Forgot to mention that no one would ever know about the bags. It's a biker dude trick in the first place. Doug read about it on one of his tri sites. If you put your foot in your sock, your sock in the bag, then bagged sock foot into the shoe, only the top of the bag would show and tuck neatly into your pants. You might need longer pants than you wore yesterday, though. Plastic bag peeking out of shoes is less of a style "don't" than frozen toes.

  6. Hey! Tell your BIL I had dibs on that name ;-) Have a great race, Nat! I may see you there, as I'm still waffling on the 10 miler.

    I usually ride in the cold with pretty much exactly what you had on. Under Armour cold weather shirt, something to break the wind, tights, and full finger length gloves are a must. My next purchase will be one of those hoodie things to cover half my face. No slacking this winter for me!

    Enjoy your mini-winter vacation! and stay away from those runny noses :-)

  7. Good SKILL in your marathon!! Are you going to use the "virtual running partner" on your Garmin? What's the weather forcast for your race? No pressure, have fun!!

  8. You're going to have a great race Ms Natalie!

    You Go Girl!

  9. Hum....plastic bags....interesting. I would buy some toe warmers from Performance Bike and also use the $1 disposable heating pads from target. Put them in the bottom of your cycling shoes-it's awesome!