So you did not hear from me this weekend. It was a busy one for sure. I spent my Friday evening enjoying a beer (or two!) at the Duende block party on Himmarshee.
On Saturday evening, we hosted our good friends Renee and Warren. We had an Italian-themed evening, complete with an arugula salad, Gavin’s homemade pizza, red wine (of course!) and a walk to Las Olas for gelato to cap the night. It could not have been better.
On Sunday, I did a yoga class in the morning and rode my bike to the beach with Gavin so we could catch the Swatch FIVB beach volleyball finals. We got there just in time to see Brazil defeat the USA in the men’s finals.
In the evening, we threw my first “Humira party”. If you watch cable tv, you probably have seen the Humira TV commercials. It’s a biologic used in the treatment of several auto-immune disorders including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. The box had been sitting in the fridge for a while until I could get a nurse to come show me how to inject it (yes, it’s by injection). I was so nervous I used every excuse in the book to delay the first shots. Well, last night we just went for it. The hell with the nurse. Gavin would do it. Four shots, one after the other. Click. Click. Click. Click. Surprisingly, the first shot was so painless that I started laughing midway through. The second one stung a bit. The third one hurt somewhat. The fourth one was a s*n of a b*tch. But it was done, and now I’m on the road to remission. My training and my future race places depend on it.
Last week was my first week of marathon training. My Team Challenge coach (hi Elizabeth!) finally settled on a 16-week training plan that was designed for beginners. Last Saturday was the first long run of the plan (5 miles). I actually did 7 miles, since I usually run to our meeting place at the beach from my house, which adds 2.5 miles to the run. Well, I gotta stop doing that. It turns out that running an extra 2.5 miles before the start of our long run means that I’m already fatigued when I start. Needless to say, this makes completing the long run more difficult.
One thing that’s been difficult for me is to accept that I have go easier on myself. I have to run slower in order to build endurance so I can become faster again. Like Elizabeth says, right now we’re just trying to get the miles in. We’re not worried about pace. The pace will come later. But let me tell you: running slow is HARD. It’s hard mentally because I’m not used to it. My comfortable, natural running pace is usually between 9:00 and 9:35. Right now, I can’t maintain that pace for very long. In order to get the miles in, I have to force myself to slow down to 11:00 or slower. I just don’t have the endurance that I had last year. I’m not sure if it’s the crazy humidity or the colitis which took more of a toll on my fitness than I was expecting.
This morning I had a 3 mile run on schedule. The good news is that I got out of bed early to run (YES!). The other good news is that the weather was a cool 73 degrees this morning (WOW!). The bad news is that the run was a complete struggle bus and I couldn’t finish it without several walking breaks. Hopefully tomorrow will be better.