Sunday, April 22, 2012

Pastoral Symphony and Pastoral Run

This week has been full of rehearsals for Beethoven's Symphony #6 (the Pastoral).  I play Principal 2nd violin with San Juan Symphony.
Open this link on another page to listen while you read the rest of this post:
Beethoven Pastoral Symphony, 1st movement

So, a week full of 55 miles of running...lots of pace work.  Plus, many hours of teaching violin lessons, in addition to many rehearsal and practice hours for the concert.  Saturday was my rest day.  I had 2.5 hours of rehearsal, then the 2 hour concert last night.  It was so fun.  The Pastoral symphony is so amazing to play in this spring season.  If you aren't a classical music listener, you should try this symphony.  In fact, just this one piece will take you through 40 or 45 minutes of a run. I don't run with music but since I play it and practice it all the time I can just sing it the whole way in my head.  The piece is full of birds, fields of flowers, shepherd songs, a stream, a thunderstorm (my favorite) and a peasant dance.

This morning's run was: 2 miles easy, 15 miles at marathon pace +10sec per mile, 3 miles easy.  I decided to do it at beautiful Berg Park...along the river here.  There is a 4 mile loop there that DH and I could run in opposite directions to see each other every few miles and touch base with each other (he is faster than me so we can't run pace together).  The run was like the Pastoral Symphony....deer, ducks, out fishing in the river, the birds singing and was totally cool.  I didn't get my thunderstorm but there are some rapids in the river.  I held pace most of the way...the last 3 miles were about 9 seconds off per mile but ah well.  I was pretty tired.  A long day yesterday with a very sweaty concert late last night plus an hour drive home and got to bed late so 9 seconds off per mile is probably just fine.  The great news is I get to go play the concert again in a few hours.

Honestly, if you have never tried is the time of year and start with Symphony No. 6....and yes it's 5 movements (5 parts) and 45 minutes long.  One movement doesn't count, you have to listen to the whole thing.

So the other great part is that there is a fellow loopster in the orchestra:
kathrynellen  She plays flute and piccolo.
Here we are at the concert last night:

Happy Spring!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Runniversary...Honeymoon is over

Over Spring Break of 2011, I read Born to Run and so did my husband.  We were absolutely convinced that we should be runners....and that we should do something I had sworn millions of times I would never a marathon.

Seven months later, we did it...Rimrock Marathon near Grand Junction, CO....a gorgeous marathon that takes you through the amazing Colorado National Monument.

My Runniversary came and went without me noticing really.  My first run with a marathon in mind was sometime in the beginning of April last year.  I am now 4 1/2 weeks away from marathon #2.  I am in the height of training and I am running faster and further than ever before.  With that comes more mental and physical challenge; more exhaustion; but also more discipline and more inspiration.  I am overwhelmed with the huge amount of progress that I have made.  I am proud of every mile that I have run and know that no matter how much you keep running that all of those miles are still hard in their own way.  I say the honeymoon is over because now that I have one year under my belt, I spend a lot of time comparing, calculating and evaluating my progress and paces.  I enjoy running and know that it has changed me but I am a person that doesn't do anything halfway so I can't help but always work to make progress. If I am going to spend my time doing something, I am going to do it to the best of my ability and do all I can to reach my highest potential.

Today's run was 10 miles with fartleks and it was just plain hard.  Every 8 minutes I had to run 3 minutes at 10k pace.  I managed to average 8:18s.  My 3 minutes of pace was right at 7:15s.  By the end, I was ruined, wrecked, exhausted.  My feet hurt for multiple reasons including  a bruise on the tendons where my shoe ties (no idea where I got it....maybe the dog, maybe yardwork).  When I got home I needed feet in my cold koi pond in the backyard.  So off I went.  I sat on a rock at the pond's edge and dropped my feet in the cold water.  The koi nibbled at my toes and swam close again and again.  My feet were numb and cold.  The pain was gone.  Tomorrow I will do it again.

Tough Runniversary for me but I know I am hooked on this running thing.

This is after the Rimrock Marathon, November 2011.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Another PR for mileage last week..58 miles (the previous week was 54 which was a PR too).  Had some good days with beautiful weather.  Marathon coming up in 5 weeks from today so I'm into a lot of pace work and high mileage right now.
Now onto the bacon.....
I know the Baconator awards are done on the Runner's World Blog Loop, but honestly today topped them all for me.  Today was just plain hard.  Firstly, we have had some beautiful weather into the 80s in the past few weeks and this morning it was 36.  By the time DH and I would finish our run, the forecast said 45 degrees.  Not so bad if we didn't have complete cloud cover.  Oh, but wait, 20-35 mph wind the ENTIRE time so with wind chill temperatures were more like 20-30 degrees.  Luckily the route we planned was mostly North and South and the wind was to be from the West or Northwest.  So, we only had a few miles of tailwind or headwind but the remainer of the run was just plain cold with half your face and one ear frozen, not to mention arms and legs too since the wind was so strong it blew right through whatever layers and windblockers we were wearing.  Oh and wait!!   I failed to mention we ran 22 miles in this crap.....yeah TWENTY-TWO!!!!!!!!  Ugh.  In 3 hours and 24 minutes.  So right about 4 hour marathon pace. Averaged 9:15s.  I wanted bacon so bad when we got we had some, with eggs and juice and multiple slices of Cinnamon Butter Braid too!  
I'm ready for summer.....and more bacon.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Land of Enchantment

Last week I ran 48.5 miles.
Sun 16
Mon 6
Tues 6.5
Wed 10
Thurs 4
Fri 6
Gorgeous spring weather in New Mexico right now!!!!!  How lucky I am to live in such a beautiful place!

Played a Vivaldi Birthday concert on Friday night.  He would be 334 years old.  I played a beautiful Violin Sonata by Vivaldi arranged by Respighi.  Had my floor-length satin ORANGE gown all pressed, and got a message 2 hours before the concert that everyone else was wearing black on bottom and a color on top....lame!  Love that gown....maybe for the next concert I will get to wear it.  Great concert though.

7 weeks til race day.

Today I did 18.  2 miles easy, 14 @ marathon pace + 10-20 sec/mile, 2 miles easy.
My goal marathon pace is around 8:00 flat so I needed to go 8:10-8:20s.  My fastest pace mile today was 8:06, slowest was 8:26 (a big uphill).  A great run.  Wore my New Balance Minimus Zeros.  All previous long runs have been in my Brooks Pure Connects but my NB Zeros feel SOOOO fast and I'd love to be able to wear them for the race so I thought I'd try them today.  I have done many 7-11 milers in them so I figured I'd be ok.  They felt great!

The news of Caballo Blanco saddens me.  I became a runner almost one year ago; after reading Born to Run.  The races, the discussion of the anatomy of the human body, and the stories of the ultra-runners motivated and inspired me to become a runner.  I find comfort knowing that he died doing what he loved in the 'Land of Enchantment'.  Rest in peace Caballo will forever be an inspiration and a legend.