Day463 burning the midnight oil & BRR TR2


This week was unproductive. There was a bit on my plate and I was worried over stuff at work. A few years ago, I wouldn’t believe I would have panic attacks because I was usually carefree happy go lucky. But now many little things would bother me and it is hard to focus at times and give me jump scares. I am upset with a bunch of stuff. Anyway, I didn’t get my runs in on the days I wanted this week. I just was not able to will myself.

Countinuing where my blog left off, my last weekend started with the BRR training run #2. I arrived like an hour late and so I ran by myself. BRR – Bull Run Run 50 Mile is an ultra in my local area. When I first started running, BRR was scary for me. Ever since, I never signed up for the race. Besides they always sold out before I knew about it. This year was no difference. I missed the sign up. However, I have been going to their training runs, mostly for motivation and meeting local runners. They are the same people who put on the MMT 100 that I will be running coming May, so in my opinion, I should get to know them ahead of time. I think I might need a pacer and hopefully, I could find from these local runners someone who would fit my style. Usually anyone would do, but it would be nice to find someone who has a similar personality/pace – who clicks.

I have trained on the Bull Run Trail on my own in the past and I was familiar with the portion closer to my house. I had a bad opinion of the trail because of the mud and that it is mostly flat.

Little did I know on the other end (Fountainhead or really the start point) is unlike the part near where I live. I have never been to the Fountainhead side. It is not at all swampy and it is also super hilly. I had a blast on my run.

At first, my intent was to run 20-30 miles for the training. By noon I was worn. I only did about 10-12 miles. It was alright. I called it a day. I got back to my car while other people were still out and about. Though I was late, I ran into many runners on the trail. I was shy so I didn’t meet up with them after the run. Pretty much for the rest of the day after I got home, I slept. This set up the pattern for the rest of the week — small runs and a lot of sleeping.

Sunday: I had a 5K run. It was a good run. It was my first 5K in a long time. I was happy to finish under 30 minutes. I think my time was 28 or 29 minutes. It was slow in term that I had run a 5K between 24-25 minutes, but I felt this was the fastest I could muster in my current state. I started slow without a warm up. It was a cold Sunday, maybe at 30 F (it was snowing, and I thought the race would be canceled). Halfway through, I started hitting my pace, but I was unable to push harder – I felt I hit a limit.

I stayed with the pace, then a guy caught up to me – he said I have been following you for a while and finally caught up. I was happy for him and cheered him on, though I know he was breathing kind of hard. I was not breathing heavily, moving at a leisure pace. We chatted. He said he hasn’t done any racing for two years. He did the Marine Corps and I said I did too. We came to a hill, and I was able to push a bit harder and he felt behind. We came to two more hills and before long I got to the finish. He came in about 10 seconds later. Not bad. He is maybe 10 years older than me, so that was really good for him. I didn’t tell him that I used to run even faster, and maybe he could also say the same thing too. Nothing to brag about but good to meet a light hearted fellow.

I know I need to work on my speed this year. I really want to get my marathon time down to 4 hours and with an eye, hoping that one day to get it down to three hours. It is a far goal to BQ (Boston Marathon Qualified). Yes it is one of my impossible and secret goals, I don’t know if I could ever reach.

Monday to Wednesday. I did not run. The weather was cold and I came home each night tired. I usually fell asleep by 9 pm. Normally 9 pm is when I go for my runs. My sleep pattern has changed this week. By sleeping early I usually became awake a few hours later. Now I am active in the early morning like from 3-5 am. And I sleep again once the sun is about to be up. Maybe I have to switch my run to the early morning instead.

This coming weekend – I have a training run. This one is actually for my own race the MMT 100 in May. It is out in the middle of nowhere. Supposedly I should drive down on Friday night, camp out, and then run on Saturday, and maybe camp out again on Saturday night before coming home. I want to, but I haven’t had time to plan it properly. What likely will happen is I’ll wake up super early and do the drive out. The run is at 8 am. The drive is about two hours maybe three. Probably I need to wake around 3 am. Leave by 4 and I think I will make it.

I am proud of myself to have finally nailed down my flight and hotel for the Grandma’s Marathon. The flight was about $50 cheaper than when I first searched for them two weeks ago. It is a direct flight takes 2 hours. I think it is pretty good. It is about maybe $100 more than last year, but I am willing to take it. As for the hotel, there are a lot of choices. There were none available at Duluth, but I am willing to take hotels in Minneapolis and make that long drive out and back (2.5 – 3 hrs drive). I think I have a decent hotel for $106 per night. I could stay in a motel for around $60-70, but usually the quality for those ones are bad. I would only take a motel if I have no choice. I prefer to stay in a bit at higher tier accommodation. I am happy with this choice too because I think I saved another $50, compared to when I last checked. It is near the airport. Usually I avoid hotels near the airport having had bad experiences before — bad services, but I am willing to gamble again. They say you pay for what you get and airport hotels are usually that.

The race will be on Saturday. I will be flying in early Friday morning, run on Saturday and fly home on Sunday. This is for the race in June.

Couple more weeks until my first marathon at Newport.

There is not much to this report. I had a hard time coming up with what to write. My training has been bad but I also did a few decent runs. My sleep time is bad but I had enough I think, so I am not tired in the morning. I got a few race related stuff done, am happy to get them out of the way. All that is left is training. (While writing this up, I came across a race, hint I am interested – Pinhoti 100). And of course, did this all in the middle of the night. Another week has passed, looking toward a better week next week.

TL;DR I slept a lot at odd hours and did not run. I was able to settle some of pre-race tasks

meta: after writing this entry, I realized that my new weird sleeping hours and fatigue and anxiety could be due to the side effect of he vaccine booster shot taken last week. oh and the vivid dreams too, it all makes sense now.


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