I tried something different yesterday – a track workout with Boston Performance Coaching. I had a good run last Friday, then another one on Monday. I was feeling like I’m really starting to get back into (and love!) running again. So when I received an email about this program, I thought it would be a blast. Thankfully my friend Molly was happy to join me. I was starting to get cold feet right before it started so I was glad to have a friend by my side.
We began with a few warm-up laps, walking lunges, kick-backs, etc. and then it was time to run timed laps. We were given pace tables to set our goals. Molly and I based ours on 8:27 minute miles at a 10K and our 400m lap goal was 1:37. Then we took off – three 400m laps. Molly stuck with me for the first 2 and then I told her to go ahead and finish strong. I did not have that much energy. My time: 5:58 for 1,200 meters. I definitely did not meet the 1:37×3 goal but there was no way in hell I could. After a few minute rest, we had to do it all over again. My time: 6:00. I was not in a good mental place anymore.
The good/bad news is that the coach noticed I had the wrong form. I wasn’t using my hamstrings or rotating my ankles. Apparently I was just propelling myself forward somehow without using the back of my legs so that’s why my quads and shins were screaming at me. On our next set I took it easy and concentrated on rotating my ankles and really lifting my knees up. It felt better but I didn’t push as hard as we were supposed to go and felt a tiny bit like a slacker. I know it’s better not to injure myself so I felt like it was the right thing to do but still. I didn’t even realize that I was having all these negative thoughts until Molly said: “Elina, you are doing great. You are so hard on yourself!” Whoa, I was being hard on myself!! Next set we did only 800 meters with 4 splits (pickup for 200, then jog, another pickup, then jog) and I finished in 3:55. A tiny bit faster than the first round but of course I had one lap less to do.
At the end I realized that I kind of shut down mid-way, and that’s not the right attitude. I talked to the coach later and she explained to me what I was doing wrong. I will work on rotating my ankles and picking up my knees. She said that I also have no hamstring strength, so I’ll work on that too. I’m actually surprised to hear that because I do lift weights and feel pretty strong, but we’ll see. Maybe a little more hamstring targeted exercises will improve my running form and will make it easier (and safer) for me to run.
The Harvard track in the distance…
Molly and her dog, Sydney… she’s such a cutie!
Molly and I – I hate this picture of myself. I look so chunky.
Instead of taking the train home, I chose to walk back. I needed to clear my head. There were some gorgeous views so I snapped a few photos. So pretty
My instinct when I’m down is to go to sweets. I was determined to NOT eat emotionally. Instead I made a delicious dinner.
Tilapia in lemon/caper sauce, roasted asparagus, pickles and laughing cow with hot mustard on 12 grain bread + roasted tomatoes
Such a delicious dinner!
Then I turned my brain off and watched the Biggest Loser. It was emotional and inspirational. Exactly what I needed to lift my spirits! …. and then my amazing husband surprised me with this book:
I was so giddy with excitement!!! By then it was nearly 11pm and I really should have gone to bed but I couldn’t close the book. Every single recipe sounded amazing and since Dreena’s reputation proceeds her, I in fact know that all of them will taste amazing. I seriously would like to try every single one (Julie and Julia style? ). So yeah, the evening turned out just fine after all. I realize now that I was still running 8 minute miles (what was up with that stupid chart they gave us? just setting unrealistic expectations!!) and that the coach’s feedback was invaluable. I’ll be back there next Tuesday and see if she sees an improvement.
Now let’s rewind to…
Banana walnut muffin + banana stuffed with Barney Butter + coffee
Hearty and yummy. I’m back on the Barney Butter wagon. Can’t get enough of the stuff!!
The track workout was a last minute decision but I also attended a pilates class during lunch. It was pretty easy although my abs were burning a few times. Love that burn!
Taco soup with 1/2 FFL english muffin
This was a giant lunch. I pushed through it although I had to leave some chicken. I also saved the english muffin for later and enjoyed it with a tablespoon of Barney Butter as a mid-afternoon snack.
TREAT OF THE DAY
Chocolate white choc chip cookie my co-worker’s wife made. Heavenly!
How do you deal with stressful situations? Is it hard for you to be constructive while in the moment? Do you turn to food? I’m really happy I was able to deal with my frustrations in a non-destructive way. Sweets will never improve my running time so I’d rather feed myself right and work on that pace.