Love Em Or Leave Em 5k Recap

Note: This post will most definitely come across as dramatic to many of you reading it. Admittedly the day of the race I WAS overly dramatic - frustrated, pissed off, sad. But that moment has passed and this is just a recounting of where I'm at. Honestly, it's really not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. Just so you have a bit of context. 
Well I've let two full weeks pass between me and my race. I've debated not even writing about it, mostly because I'm so sick of the 'well that didn't go as I had hoped' phrase. I'm sick of over-analyzing training/racing/running in general. And I'm also sick of rationalizing what wasn't good 'for me' versus what is a good race in everyone else's mind. FACT: it really doesn't matter what you think. Sorry if that's rude but it's the truth. 

Other truths:
- It's ironic that I posted a training update right before I tell you I'm about to derail it... my bad.
- I thought I'd be farther along in my 5k training by now. Which leads to...
- I'm inpatient and that's okay because I don't believe I'm completely unrealistic.
- I'm acknowledging (finally) that the car accident has set me back.
- I have high expectations of my ability and I know I can get there. I just need to find the right mix to get me there.

The ladies of Oiselle (Oiselle's pic).

So the quick and dirty rundown of the race because it feels like hiding if I completely ignore it.

The Good:
Warming up and racing with my teammates. The ladies of Oiselle lift me up Every Single Day. They are the reason I train and race as hard as I do. They inspire me to be a better runner. Having my training partner, Marti, by my side and giving me the pre-race pep talk. Pacing off of Robyn in the first mile and letting her keep my adrenaline in check. Having Mac give me the extra kick in the a** that I needed in the middle of the race. You ladies rock! The fact that you were there to race your own race while at the same time helping me race mine... There are no words that accurately express my gratitude. 

The Bad
The time on the clock was not what I wanted. The time on the clock was a full 30 seconds slower than last year and slower than my race back in December. The time on the clock frustrates me to no end. That said, I didn't have it. I couldn't have changed that time no matter how much I 'willed' it. I didn't have the legs (or the head) to get me across the finish line any faster. I tried executing what should have been a good race plan - cut down every half mile. But the wheels came off half way and I didn't have the energy to bring it back. This lack of endurance baffles me. Where's my stamina?! (This is where someone inevitably tells me 'it'll come back, just be patient, have faith'... yep, noted). 

Lesko's pic in the last 600 of the race.

The Perspective:
Balance is lost. I need to chill the f*** out! My anxiety levels have built after each race (starting in December) and actually after each workout. When I see slower paces I freak out. Why can't I hit mile repeats at the same pace that I used to? How is this going to get me to my 5k PR? I won't reach it. Every week it's been like a constant mental battle. And with each passing day/week I get more stressed out about the next race and if I'm doing the right things to get me there. It's exhausting!

And yes, the car accident didn't help. My body has been a mess. Pushing paces in workouts makes my whole back seize up. I was uncomfortable for weeks at work - sitting/standing/sitting - unable to find a position that I could sustain for more than 10 minutes. Going to the chiropractor, massage therapist, accupuncturist - all to just get me back to a baseline. I was allowing myself to miss the easy filler miles but the workouts I was unwilling to pass up. Pushing through many only to be crippled the next day with the newest pain. It is only now (as I'm typing this) that I can say that I've had my first full week of no pain... and that's because I haven't been running and I've been laying in the sand on vacation.

I'm unwilling to back off of my goals and throw in the towel. I'm unwilling to run 'for fun' without any structure because that really doesn't sound like 'fun'. But I'm also unwilling to continue down this road. Here's where you ask - well what does that mean?? In the short term it means I'm taking a mental break. The timing of vacation couldn't have been more perfect. It allowed me to run when I felt like it, not have a plan, and just de-stress. It also allowed me to let my body heal a bit. Now comes the part where I figure out my next steps because I haven't gotten there yet. I need to find balance - whatever that means since it's about as vague as I can get. If anyone has any ideas other than 'just enjoy yourself' I'm all ears. 


Week of Training

Several folks have asked 'what does 5k training look like?' so I thought I'd do a brief post on a typical week for me. Granted, I have no idea if this is typical 5k training but it is what I'm doing... and I'm training for 5ks... so take that as you wish.


Nookachamps 5k Race Report

First race of the year is done and dusted and I'm sitting here completely satisfied with how the day went and yet at the same time not feeling super motivated to write about it. Let me just get this out there - race reports for 5ks are hard and while I'm still trying to figure out how to race these suckers, I'm also trying to figure out how to articulate them. They're short. There's not a lot of drama to dwell on before, during, or after. And while I'm used to writing long-winded posts depicting my every thought and bodily function mile after mile... summing things up in a few short paragraphs seems almost pointless. Yet, here I am... about to make the 5k race report a new thing. 

Later note: turns out I do just fine writing about 5ks if I just get started. Someone shut me up!

I guess I have to start with the week leading up to the race - because, in fact, there was quite a bit of drama. A car accident to be exact. One week out from the race. No, it wasn't terrible. Yes, everything for the most part is fine - it could have been worse that's for sure. But my back/neck did not appreciate being slammed into by a work van who 'Didn't see me at all' (despite the fact that I had been sitting at the stoplight for a few minutes) because he was 'on the phone'. Basically my car, and thus my back, were his brakes that afternoon. Awesome!


The Year I.....

2015 will be a party, dance it up!

Oh 2015, what memories will you hold for me? What stories will come from it? In what direction will the days take me? Obviously the only question I can even try to answer is the last one and yet I have no idea. Maybe just once I'll live for the moment and see what each day brings rather than setting out with a solid plan... cricket, cricket. HA! Yeah right!! Let's not go crazy with change here.

On my run yesterday, the last day of 2014, I spent the bulk of the time picturing what 2015 could look like. What I thought was important and what I wanted to do in the next 365 days. Sure, I also spent some time reflecting on 2014 so let's talk about that for a moment. In a one phrase summary I'll just call this past year a 'keeping up with the Joneses' year. It was a year where I let everyone else's goals/dreams/aspirations dictate my life. It was a year where I did the things that I thought I was supposed to be doing. Let me step back and say it was all my own doing and as the saying goes 'hindsight is 20/20'