12 miles of hills = OUCH

It was the dreaded Rahling Road route for Saturday’s 12 mile run, I dread it, I don’t forget it and neither do my muscles.  I didn’t get home Friday night from St. Louis until almost 10pm, delays at the airport, frustrating since it’s only an hour flight, so I didn’t get into bed early and once I did my mind was working over time.  My alarm was set for 4:30am, but at 4am I woke up with horrible heart burn or symptoms of a heart attack, I didn’t know which since I never have heart burn and of course I’ve never had a heart attack.  I couldn’t imagine having heart burn since I didn’t have any dinner, it had been about 12 hours since I had eaten any solid food.  I was trying to remember what the symptoms were for a heart attack, my mind was reeling, my laptop was still packed.  I sat up in bed, no relief, checked my pulse, still beating, not fast, not slow, just normal, hmmm, probably heart burn.  Weird, it went away about 4:20 and of course I was about to drift off to dream land when the alarm went off.  Up and adam!

I kept thinking about my heart, no I am not a spring chicken anymore and when odd things happen I tend to dwell on them more than I used to say 10 years ago when I was but a mere child in my thirties.  I was thinking well if something happens when we are running today Kim can just take me to the ER at least I won’t be laying in bed when they find my cold lifeless body!  Morbid huh?  I haven’t had another “heart burn” episode, but as you can tell I’m still thinking about it.

I met Kim at Target at 5:25am, we headed to the meet spot for the Oucho run on Rahling road.  We were early enough to get a good parking spot, sign in, get our route, pin it on my fuel belt and OMG, I have to go to the bathroom, NOW!  This pisses me off, I went before I left my house, but we have to leave, go to the gas station and then go back, incredible.  Old Age SUCKS!

We don’t start running until 6:15, which surprisingly enough we still notice people just starting, or they made a different loop and we just happened to see them as they were exiting the backside of their loop.  The morning’s temperature is around 75 with humidity in the high 90%, yowser!!  The forecast called for the humidity to drop as the day went on and it did, but the morning was miserably muggy.

I think I mentioned this, I hate this route, huge hills that never end, oh there is a straight stretch around mile 7/8 but that’s it!  This was one of my worse runs in a while, since traveling and only running on the treadmill during the week I lose my acclimation to the humidity and I really paid for it Saturday, my heart rate was HIGH which made my breathing harder which made my running harder.  I have no idea how we finished 12 miles.  And the odd thing is I ran all the hills until mile 10, the Rahling Road hill, Kim ran the entire thing, but I was counting light poles, I ran two, then walked one, ran one and a half, walked one and then ran the rest, which I did not count.  My heart rate monitor was beeping like crazy telling me my heart rate was maxed at 182.  That hasn’t happened in a very long time, but I kept going I didn’t feel like I was going to keel over or anything just at my running limit, I couldn’t have pushed it.

After the Rahling Road hill you think, oh we have it made, or that’s what Kim thought, she has only been on this route one other time, I knew we had Chenal Valley Drive and LaMarche Blvd, which is a bear too, I have to admit I walked about half the time on the remainder of the hills, I was tired and ready to be finished.  I would try running up the hill and get about half way up and I would start walking, I didn’t care anymore, my legs were like Jello, we were around mile 11 or 11.5.

We did finish our 12 miles, but it felt like 20, those hills!!  I’m glad it’s over and today I’m sore, even the top of my feet are sore from the downhills.  Kim and I ran 5 miles this morning, I tried to get out of it, but somehow she wrangled me out the door, it was a slow start, but after I got warmed up it ended up being okay until about mile 4.5, I was once again ready for it to be done.

Next week, no travels!  I’m so excited to be home, lots of stuff to catch up on at the house, getting ready to go outside and mow the grass, hopefully I can make it look half way decent, it looks like crap right now.

In case you have a need to know, we did our 12 miles in 2:13, average pace of 11:07, not too shabby considering the torture!  Today the 5 miles was an average pace of 10:37, nice recovery pace.

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Coming Home, Yippee!!

Couple more hours and I’ll be heading to the airport, can’t wait, even though I hear it’s a little humid in Arkansas, I don’t care, I don’t have to come back to St. Louis next week!!

Kim and I have a 12 mile run in the morning at Rahling Road, it’s our hilliest route, she is looking forward to it, I think she even clapped when they announced it last week, not me, I’ve never been a fan of this route.  It has huge hills and no bathrooms.  Oh well, it will all work out, it always does, I’ve got tons of stuff to do this weekend, looking forward to just being home.

Dreaded Dreadmill

Another dreaded dreadmill workout this morning, I just couldn’t wake up, maybe if I went to bed earlier?  Up at 4:38am, on the treadmill by 5:00am.  This was a miraculous workout today, the most miles ever for me on a treadmill, 5.82 in 1 hour, I was shocked.

Around mile 1.6 I was trying to figure a way off the stupid machine, but I was getting into Angel and had to finish it.  So, I put a small towel over the display and would increase the speed a little every once in awhile, when I quit I was down to a 9:40 pace.  Yeah for me!   The towel thing always helps, I don’t see how slow the miles are ticking by.

Gotta run, conference call in 8 minutes.

Back in St. Louis

Another week in St. Louis, uneventful trip in yesterday, straight to the office by 9:00am.  I was able to leave the office pretty early, 5:15, we had an update go into the system at 5:00 pm so that meant everyone had to be completely out of the system, woohoo!  I was looking forward to a relaxing at my hotel, I had no idea how to get there so I was trying to put the address in my TomTom and it didn’t like it, I tried more than once, frustrating, it was now 5:30, time was flying by.  I finally called the hotel and they gave me the “other” address, what the hell?  So TomTom liked that one, headed to St. Charles, MO.  There wasn’t much traffic, got off on the correct exit, but where I needed to make a left, I couldn’t, weird thing about Missouri, no U-Turns, so I had to drive for at least 1/2 mile to make a left and then turn around.

I finally made it to my hotel, Embassy Suites St. Charles, very nice lobby, looks pretty new, the front desk clerk gives me the low down on the Health Club, breakfast and the evening reception that is in full swing, free drinks and snacks, oh goody, dinner.   Drop my bags, grab my jacket and head back downstairs, big disappoint, the snacks were just that, Chex mix and Potato Chips.  I grabbed some chips and a Diet Coke (heavy drinker), sat with my book and read some until I decided I needed more than just chips for dinner.  Went over to the hotel restaurant at the Bartender’s suggestion, she said it was right next to the bar and it was, but deserted, I looked around and did see a dinner party, so yes, they were open.  I stood there a bit longer, waiting, and waiting, grabbed a menu and finally 10 minutes later a waitress comes out and asks if I need help, well let me think about it, uh yes.

I wanted to place an order to go and the waitress said I can take your order when you’re ready and she left, I was studying the menu, decided on what I wanted and started waiting again, OMG, this is crazy!  I waited 10 minutes when I different girl came out and said “you doing okay, you need something?”  You’ve got to be kidding me, I told the waitress “Uh I was trying to place an order to go”, her reply, “oh, only Teresa can take that order you’ll have to go over to the bar”, my reply “Really?  Just forget it”, her reply “I can write it down for you and take it over there”.  Seriously I had been waiting since 6:30 and it was now 6:50, I was irritated to say the least, so I just marched my butt over to the Coffee Bar and bought a prepared salad, Diet Dew in about 3 minutes.
Wow, that long boring crap is over, now the long boring today stuff, HA!!  I got up at 4:30am this morning to get down to the fitness center by 5am so I could run 5 miles on the dreadmill, UGH!!  It was very hard to get out of bed, it was warm and toasty, and just right for more sleep.  But, I wanted to get those 5 miles done, I needed to work off that Hershey Bar I had last night, it was yummy!  I did not have a good experience on the dreadmill, but then again I never do, today was just worse than other days.  I started my run in time, just as Angel was starting on TNT, I was just not liking it, I kept looking down at the mileage, OMG, it just felt like it was creeping by, I have no idea how I made it through those 5 miles, but I did.  I ended up doing 5 miles in 52 minutes, walked until Angel was over, Thank Goodness it was over!!  I just hated it!!

Once I got back to my room it was shower, makeup and then OH CRAP, dry my hair.  Well, I never take my hair dryer, because most of the Embassy Suites or Doubletree Hotels I stay in have upgraded hair dryers, you know the kind in a drawer and not implanted on the wall.  Well, this was the cheapest wall hair dryer ever, and if any of you girls out there blow dry your hair with a round brush like I do you’ll be able to relate, I would be drying my hair and then need to set the dryer down while I readjusted some hair in the back, well this stupid hair dryer’s on/off switch was not on the handle it was on the wall, so you couldn’t just turn it off with your thumb, you had to use your brush had to reach over turn the dryer off, lay the dryer down, readjust your brush, reach up turn the dryer back on, repeat. Pain in the ass!!  I thought I would never get my hair dry, it was flat as a pancake.  This hotel is super nice too, I just couldn’t understand this $5 hair dryer in this expensive hotel.  I did ask the front desk if they had any hand held dryers, no, but there’s a Walgreens down the street, uh, no, I won’t be purchasing one, I have one, at home.  ARGH!!

Then my breakfast sucked, the pineapple was just horrible, I don’t know what they did to it, but it was so nasty, the honeydew was slimy, but the toast and OJ were good.  This day did not start out well at all, at least there were 5 miles under my belt for the day.  Tomorrow I’m sleeping in.

The Branch Manager has asked me to come back the week of the 8th, I don’t know if it will be approved and I really don’t want to come back at all!  I’m ready to put St. Louis behind me.

Slow Sunday Run

After a few good runs today was not so good.  Kim came over around 6:30am and ran 4 miles while I got ready for our 7 mile run, or that was our plan from yesterday.  I piddled around the house waiting on her to get back, I felt fine from our 10 mile run yesterday and wanted to get as many miles in as I could since I would be in St. Louis all week.  When she got back she said it was tough, meaning hot and humid, oh boy, I thought it would be cooler, we had gotten a lot of rain yesterday afternoon and I was hoping for just a little less humidity and maybe some cooler temperatures, nope.

It was 78 degrees, 90% humidity, 73 degree dew point, muggy to say the least.  Once we started running I could tell my legs were a little tired, Kim’s were too, we both knew it would be a slow run and it was, oh well, we didn’t care, just get the miles in.  When we got over to the lake we did one loop, used the bathroom and then headed out on our 5 mile loop, we ran up all the hills except the Old Mill hill, by the time we got to it we were pooped and we walked it.

When we got close to my house my Garmin went off at 6 miles and we both just stopped running and started walking, we were done, literally.  Kim got in a little over 10 miles I got in 6, her training for the Chicago Marathon is intense, my training for the whatever comes next besides the Relay in April is going well, I may increase my daily mileage to 5.5, then 6.  But, I want to keep the speed up too, so we shall see what happens, not sure if the daily increase will happen this week since I’ll be running on the dreaded dreadmill, oh my gosh I hate that thing.

Kim and I enjoyed some coffee and talk of the Olympics once we got inside, I hate that it’s over for four years, yes the Winter Olympics are in 2010, but I don’t like them as much as the Summer Olympics, there is just so much more variety, it all doesn’t have to do with snow or ice.  Speaking of the Olympics, did you watch the Marathon last night, holy smokes, they were running so fast I can’t even comprehend it, how can anyone run that fast for that long??  They were just amazing, I don’t know how they do it, well, yes they do nothing but train, and natural born talent, which I seem to be missing.

I’m just sitting here now, dreading packing for my trip, watching the wild bunny in the backyard munch on the old peaches I put out this morning.  I miss my kitties so much, I talked to my ex-fiance a few minutes ago and told him I wasn’t coming to see the cats, even though I want to so bad, but when I do see them I get all down in the dumps because they can’t come home with me where they should be, or where I think they should be, selfishness, right now I know they are better off where they are, they are happy, well taken care, well fed and with my traveling I can’t be there for them.  Damn it, I love those kitties.

Back home to the Humidity

Made it back home last night and I have to say, whew, glad to be back, but boy is it HUMID!!  St. Louis was very stressful, the branch was very negative, it was hard to stay positive when so many people were been negative, constantly, maybe next week will be a little better, at least I hope so.

I was able to run 4.75 on the dreadmill again on Thursday at the hotel, the Health Club at the Hotel was a little too warm, I was sweating like I was running outside in the middle of August in Arkansas.  It’s always amazing to me that at hotels they keep the halls ice cold and the fitness rooms warm and you can complain and it’s always the same answer, oh, I let the engineers know when they get in, they never do.

It was nice to sleep in a little on Friday, I had a late flight out on Friday so it was pretty much a full day of work, I tried to keep to myself and get all the loose ends tied up before leaving.  We had lots of small issues with the software I had to work out all the details and let everyone know the outcomes, some good some not what everyone wanted to hear, more complaining and whining.

I finally got to the airport, a little too early, but I didn’t care, I was OUT OF THE OFFICE!!  What a relief!  I found a comfy chair and fell asleep!  The lady next to me nudged me and said “we’re about to board”.  Wow, I must have really been exhausted.

Kim and I had already arranged to meet this morning at 5:30am, our norm, at 5:40 I was starting to wonder where she was and of course I had left my phone at home.  I was going to give her 5 more minutes and here she comes pulling into the Target parking lot.  Her power had gone out, her car was in the garage, when it goes bad…..

We were meeting the Little Rock Marathon Training group at Lake Willastein in Maumelle for a 10 mile run, we had about 20 minutes to get there and we arrived right before 6:00am, there was probably at least 100 people there and we had to park way at the end of the lake, but we made it in time.  It was so humid this morning, I think about 90%, it looked like rain and we both took our hats.  I was worried about running 10 miles since I had only run twice during the week and both days were on the treadmill.  When we start out on this route we run by Starbuck’s and I knew there weren’t any bathrooms on this route, or there wasn’t previously so I decided to make one quick pit stop before we really got going, it was probably a good move, we didn’t see another one until about mile 5.

The first half of our run was the same as previous routes I have run in Maumelle, but the second half was a little different, which was good.  We crossed Maumelle Blvd and over to Crystal Hill Rd, went by DeWafelbaker Corp office, turned around and headed back, we ran into a couple of ladies who were kind of lost, they were supposed to be on the 6 mile route, Kim and I were already at around mile 6.5, so we told them to head down Maumelle Blvd, back toward the start, they were really off track, we did see them when they were finishing and they actually ending up with 7.5 miles, uh oh.

Kim and I had a really good run, I was surprised considering the weather (humid), the course, some of which was a little hilly and some of which was on Maumelle Blvd where the speed limit is 50 MPH, and my not running much this week.  When we were running into the parking lot where we started we were right at 10 miles, that never happens and our average pace was 10:17, I was very happy to say the least.  We were both soaked with sweat, but felt good, no huge aches or pains, we had both drank a lot of water during our run so we stayed well hydrated.  Mile 1 – 9:58, Mile 2 – 9:59, Mile 3 – 10:07, Mile 4 – 9:59, Mile 5 – 10:51, Mile 6 – 10:05, Mile 7 – 10:16, Mile 8 – 11:13, Mile 9 – 10:20, Mile 10 – 9:59.  Avg HR 161, Max 176.

After we scratched our names off the list, stretched and said bye to a few folks we headed to Starbucks for our usual treat and then it was off to Home Depot to look for ceiling fans, no luck with those, but we lucked out with a very helpful guy who gave us all kinds of information on stuff for my house and even gave us a roll of electrical tape, I think he might have been flirting with us, I don’t know why though we were still sweat soaked and probably not smelling that great either.  Then off to Oak Express to pick up a cabinet I had ordered and then of course to Target, can’t be Saturday without a trip to Target, we got tons done this morning, it always feels good to know you got your run in, your shopping done and your still home before noon.  Tomorrow I think we are running 7 miles in the morning and then just coffee at my house.

Another week in St. Louis next week, hopefully it won’t be as stressful, I need a better week.

UGHH!! St. Louis

I’m in St. Louis this week and next on business, moving our Beta branches into a Live status, woohoo, it’s been terribly busy, some glitches to work through as usual, but all in all, no show stoppers.  I’ve been working till about 6:30 each night, not that late, just late enough that I don’t have time to do much once I get to my hotel.  I’m staying at the Hilton St. Louis Frontenac, very nice hotel, very nice.  It appears to be in a ritzy part of town, there is the Plaza Frontenac right across the street, I can see Saks Fifth Avenue and Williams Sonoma Home when I leave in the mornings, I’m not stepping foot over there.

I was going to run last night, but I didn’t get back to my room till after 7pm, I just blew it off and decided to get up this morning extra early and run in the Health Club.  Last night I had to spend some time locating the Health Club, it’s in a separate building, but super nice, all Precor equipment, clean, remodeled, big room, the dreadmills all have TVs built in.  So, this morning set my alarm for 4:30, hit the snooze once, got up, piddled a bit, got everything together and headed over, put my key card in the slot, no go, crap, tried again, nope.  This is starting to piss me off, I’m looking around for a phone, called the front desk, oh the health club opens at 5am, just a couple of minutes, whew, they were lucky!!  I did some walking lunges around the atrium while I waited.

Once I got in I was warmed up and found the perfect dreadmill, turned my TV on, plugged in my headphones, tuned in to TNT, Angel was on, great show for running at 5am, he’s such a cute vampire!  I really can’t tell you how nice this fitness room was, a lot of times the hotels I go to have these tiny little rooms with old worn out treadmills, not Hilton, they are remodeling and ramping up their Fitness Centers, and I for one am loving it!!  Especially when it’s too dark to run outside.  I ending up running a little over 5 miles, around 54 minutes, was able to watch Angel, which I have only every watched while traveling, odd.  Now I still feel fat, I’ve been eating tootsie rolls, every day but today, one of the guys at the office has a bowl full of candy on his desk, yummy and bad at the same time.  I hate being out of my routine.  Salads for lunch and dinner, and then candy, how does that work?

Plan on getting up again in the morning and doing a repeat of this mornings workout.  I will try and refrain fron the tootsie rolls, he also has Butterfinger and Baby Ruth Bars.