The last Monday and the last day of the year -December 31. I took a rest day to start the week, cleaning up the apartment and doing some last minute errands to prepare for company on New Year’s Eve.
We rang in the new year with family and friends, and Tuesday was a little bittersweet, knowing that we had to return to work on Wednesday. After a long day of relaxing, I got out for a run just as the sun was starting to set. It was windy, but I just wanted to get a few miles in to start the year off on the right foot.
I brought my headphones along, but as I tried to find a groove with the music I realized it was the kind of run that called for me to unplug. I turned the music off, and listened to the sounds of the neighborhood, and three miles slipped away, with a little push at the end.
I didn’t sleep well Tuesday night, and it thwarted my plans for a trainer ride on Wednesday morning. I was hardly able to drag myself out of bed in time for work, let alone to get anything done before that. But after work I made plans with Sophie and Emily to head to the gym- having a plan with them keeps me accountable.
Once we were all home and about ready to get moving, we of course gave each other excuses, but blew through them and agreed to meet anyway. We even managed to find three treadmills near each other, and got to work.
I had a speed workout planned, as is my usual approach to treadmills. A two mile warmup, then 6x200 @ 6:58, 2 miles at 8:57, and a final repeat of the 6x200 set.
I actually felt good this time around, and hitting the numbers happened without feeling like I was going to die- even if I did feel like I may fly off the back of the treadmill a few times. At the end of the workout I had gotten 9 miles done, and was thankful that Emily and Sophie had kept me accountable.
On Thursday I had bike trainer plans for the morning. I was hoping to get Day one for the “tour de zwift” event done, but didn’t realize that I had to log on at a specific time to participate- a rookie zwift mistake. But it was the first event that I ever tried to participate in, so I didn’t know any better. Since the first stage wasn’t available, I did an FTP test instead, since I hadn’t don’t one since April. It was challenging, but I was happy to get it done. That night was a lot of running around and packing for my family’s annual trip to woodloch, so nothing was accomplished fitness wise- but I did find a little time to work on my costume for the Disney half marathon!
On Friday my family was heading to woodloch just before lunchtime, so Kasey and I agreed to meet up at 8 for a long run. I planned to do 12 miles, but once I met up with Kasey- who had overslept for the first time ever- she informed me that we were leaving 30 minutes earlier than I thought, so I had to cut the mileage down to just a bit over 8 to get it done and have time to shower and get ready for the ride.
The weather was nice, and we covered a lot of ground on our run. I was overdressed, as usual, with a too heavy jacket - maybe one day I won’t be scared by temperatures that are below 30. We both agreed that our legs felt heavy, but we somehow trudged forward at sub 10 minute paces, the miles getting away from us as the time we had remaining to dedicate to the run dwindled. Eventually we parted ways so Kasey could run home and I could head back to the apartment.
An hour later, we were on the road and headed to Pennsylvania. Woodloch Pines is a resort that was founded in 1958, and can most easily be described as a cruise on land. Lots of food, activities, and shows over the course of a weekend. My family has been going there since I was a little kid, our numbers growing over the years. This year we were heading there earlier than we normally do, to accommodate my cousins that are now in college, so that they don’t have to travel home an extra weekend.
We started the weekend with a trip to the Go Karts - there were nine of us wanting to ride, and six cars. So a few of us doubled up, which was simpler when we were all tinier. Kasey and I wedged ourselves into a car, and I only thought I was going to die a few times as we whipped around corners - so basically it was the same as driving with her normally. We still had some time to kill before dinner, so we headed over to the main lodge after go karts and played some pool and ping pong with Dennis, my brother, and a few of our other cousins.
After dinner we headed to the traditional horse race- which uses giant chess horses and dice, and cheered for our favorites to win the races.
The next morning after breakfast, Sophie Kasey and I headed to the gym to get in some miles on the treadmill. I would have liked to go outside, but it was raining so the treadmill was a better option.
My plan told me to get in a “threshold” run, which consisted of a two mile warmup, and then 10 minute intervals swapping between a 8:58 and a 9:17 pace. I got through the warmup easily enough, but the air circulation was lacking in the tiny hotel gym. The paces weren’t hard but the temperature in the room ensured that I was a puddle of sweat as I slogged through the miles. Kasey and Sophie headed out after three, so misery had no company in the second half of my run. But I kept going, and soon enough I was able to slow the pace for a quick cooldown, before ending my run with a total of 7 miles. Then it was on to another meal, and another busy day at woodloch- this time a home run derby, and a variety show.
The big event on Saturday at woodloch - which is an almost annual event for my family - is the big dress up night. The lead up to this goes something like, Kasey asks me what I am wearing, I tell her what I think I may wear, and then i change my mind last minute anyway. It was a bit of a frustrating day, but it felt good to put my best foot forward and try to enjoy the night.
Sunday we enjoyed our last meals at woodloch, and then headed home. I was exhausted from a busy weekend, and very happy to see the kitties when we got home.
With only 4 days to go before I head to Florida, I have quite a bit of packing to do, but not a lot of training left before the marathon- just a few more miles to go before the big day!