Friday, April 17, 2009

My first hills

Boston runners, we are rooting for you! Do us proud!

Do I dare to hope that spring is finally here? Beautiful weather, the sun smiling down, temperature in the high '50's...it's hard to believe that 2 days ago, I was splashing through wet, muddy roads, trying to avoid being drenched by passing cars.

Monday: 6 miles + spinning + 15 minutes of BodyWorks (I just swooped in for the ab exercises; if I did the whole hour, my legs would be jello!)
Tuesday: 4 recovery miles (Ha...like I needed to recover from my 6 slow miles!)
Wednesday: 8 miles + spinning + 15 minutes of BodyWorks

Thursday: 4.6 miles. Yippee...my first run in shorts this year! Glenn and I finally met up to run hills, after weeks upon weeks of planning and procrastinating. Glenn, unlike me, has a remarkable head for directions. He gave me precise, GPS-like directions over the phone to our meeting place, right up to where I should park my car. When I drove into the parking spot next to him, he was busy drawing me a map of 2 other hilly routes I could use, for longer runs. As we were going to run in broad daylight, I didn't get a chance to show off my brand new reflective vest, so let me do that here.
The first thing I noticed when I got out of my car was the Garmin 305 strapped to his wrist. I eyed it, going a little green...with envy. I went greener when he told me his brother had gifted it to him for Christmas! Hmm...my not-so-subtle hints to DH about how my running will dramatically improve if only I could get my hands on one of these babies, have not worked...I need to try something more drastic.

We got down to business, running the route Glenn had picked. The 1.6 mile route consisted of 4 steep, hilly roads, each about 0.2 miles in length, as well as the roads connecting these hills. On my schedule was 4 miles, so I planned to do this route twice, then pick one of the hills for the finish. This was the perfect route for a beginner...the uphill part was just long enough to make me breathe hard, but not so long that I would feel like a fish out of water. As we ran, I would pant and wheeze up a hill, thinking of all you crazy hill runners (*ahem*...you know who you are!), then, a second after we reached the top of the hill, my breathing would return to normal and I would sail down the hill, wondering what I was fussing about just a second ago! I think I am beginning to dig hills...I love flying down the hills; I just need to get used to the gasping and wheezing climb.

Glenn was breathing hard...I didn't know till later, that he had recently suffered from an infection which he was just recovering from; he was still prone to sudden, violent coughing fits. I couldn't run 2 minutes on a flat road with that cough, let alone 4 miles on hills! We completed the 1.6 mile loop once. That was pretty good for my first attempt at hills.
Glenn then drove me around the neighborhood, where he had run several times before, and introduced me to 3 other hilly running routes, using the odometer to mark the distance of each route. So sweet of him. Most of these routes are busy roads, but very pretty, all the same. Two of them loop around a little lake. I will definitely be trying them out later.

Back home, I ran 3 more miles in my neighborhood.

DH cooked us some of this for dinner.
Masala Smoodles is my favorite Top Ramen flavor. It's imported from India (as you can see from the price on the packet), and is available in Indian grocery stores. DH threw in some frozen peas.
DH likes his with ketchup on the side...

I am messier...my plate usually looks like this (with left-over chicken and a gallon of ketchup mixed in).
I'll leave you gazing at this souvenir from our hiking expedition last weekend. Pretty, ain't it?

17 comments:

trialsoftraining said...

wow look at you and all your miles! :) I'm impressed. I need to start doing hill workouts now that it's nicer outside. I hate doing them on treadmills, definitely Not my thing.

lindsay said...

i love that ramen noodles are featured :) used to eat them everyday, but now i am allergic. sad. :(

great job running and working out! glad you have a good friend to share the hilly runs with and get route ideas from. heading back downhill is my favorite part of running hills ;)

Abby said...

Oh my goodness, I'm SO happy that spring is finally here!

We should definitely try to link up at Jersey. Any sense of when you're heading to the expo?

Amy said...

I also go a little green with envy when my running buddy straps on her Garmin. But it takes forever to locate the satelite! So sometimes my $10 Target watch is just fine :). Still, I wouldn't complain if one happened to be among my birthday gifts this year...

J said...

I know the feeling you described while running hills! Its so hard during them but once finished its like oh that wasnt so bad!!

X-Country2 said...

Running hills is pretty addictive. Such a love/hate thing.

Roisin said...

Now I need to find an Indian grocery store! That looks like comfort food to me!

Good work on the hills. I'm sure you have actual hills, as opposed to my "slight rise in the road" hills.

Cindy said...

great job on your hills!
you FOUND that? that is so cool. i saw part of an animal sacrum by a river once, but it just scared me. that antler is awesome!

Heather said...

Yay for hills - you will reap the benefits when you start passing people on hills in races!

aron said...

awesome job on the hills!!!

Pearl said...

oh my gosh - YAY and congrats on the hills!

and oh, a subtle way to tell DH? buy it, hand him the receipt and say, "we'll just make it easier for the both of us." ;)

The Happy Runner said...

Awesome!!! That feeling is exactly why hills are so great. You push and you get over the hill and you feel terrific. Getting up a hill is an accomplishment and cresting it and gliding afterward are the rewards!

Have a great weekend!

joyRuN said...

Nicely done! I think I'm torn between which are worse - hills or speedwork. Either one KILL me.

Christie said...

Hills would be awesome if they only consisted of going downhill. You're better than me.

I had no idea about Masala flavored ramen. There's an Indian store near me that I go to for bulk raw nuts and some spices. I'll have to look for it next time.

I Run for Fun said...

Abby, I will most probably be at the expo about mid-day on Saturday...will send you an email.

Pearl, that's a great idea...I should try that!

raulgonemobile said...

I really like running hills. Like XC2 said, a love/hate thing. You do feel really good afterward, though..

Lakshmi said...

Great job on running the hills. I love Indian Top Ramen noodles and after reading ur blog, I just added that to my shopping list.