The Bestest Ever-est: Final Peak week and Taper Time

I have made it over the mountain so to speak. Sunday capped off my third and finaly peak week of training for Western States. It was a great week of training, though it was spotted with moments where I thought I just wouldn't be able to push on for another mile. But I did push through those miles and at times surprisingly found myself with more energy than I had started with. Now begins the rest and sharpen. Less miles, even more purpose. Focus and relaxation. I am quite excited. My night run, my 3rd peak week runs, my taper, even my cold (thank you Howard for the reminder) all have me feeling like I can achieve what I am setting out to do.

Part of the reason I was so tired last week was having to deal with a huge work issue which was incredibly stressful, saddening and ultimately, life changing. I spent many sleepless, restless nights trying to find an answer to the situation that arose. Unfortunately for me, all the situations still mean I had to lose something. In the end, I chose life over job satisfaction. That may be vague, but it shall remain so because I for one am tired of discussing the past. The past was the problem and is frankly, unwelcome in my very pleasant, promising present.

The bestest ever-est

By this past Sunday, I was just plain dog-gone tired. I woke up Sunday morning and dragged myself out of bed to go to Cougar with Allen. I kept telling myself that I needed to run when feeling so tired because that was a sign that I was peaking correctly and would go into my taper week strong and prepared. I scoped him up at 7am and we hit the trails at 7:30 before I went to work at SRC. We did the long loop with De Leo and Wilderness and it was super slow going. I was starting to feel a cold coming on and my body was just fatigued. I made it through but felt like two stacks of crap all day long even after finishing. I worked the afternoon at SRC and then headed up to cook dinner for my mom. I made a delicious double pea soup and a roasted fennel with roast shallot maple dressing salad. It was excellent, but of course, I forgot my camera. About halfway home from dinner, I realized I didn't feel quite so bad afterall and was ready to go for another run! I text Jonathan and he was gearing up for a run, so we decided to run together down in his neck of the woods, along Lake Washington and around Seward Park. After having such a crappy run in the morning, I was not sure how my legs would feel when I actually started running but as we clipped along at a sub 7 pace, I felt great. We completed 10.5 miles and I felt phenomenal. It was one of those times when you remind yourself that if you just have to keep going and things will get better.

Monday was a lovely and well deserved rest day. I just worked, worked and worked. Tuesday was an interesting day, as I have been leading a few workouts for one of the girls in the SRC youth program. I took her out for a 1-2-3-4-3-2-1 minute workout and really got my legs turning. It is hard to stay ahead of an 11 year old! I then popped over to Ravenna, ran my old 8 mile loop and visited my uncle at his house.

On Wednesday, I had a day off from all my works and met the fabulous Laura out for lunch at Araya before hitting up Cougar to run with Jove. The food was delicious, although I didn't really get to indulge as much as I may have wanted to since I knew we'd be pounding out 2hrs on the trail. It was great to get out there and catch up with Jove especially since he wasn't able to join us on the night run due to his own personal epic the night before. We started on the normal SRC loop, but decided to do a down and back on the Bear Ridge Trail which feels much longer than its approx. 4 miles (total). And like Sunday, I started off feeling pretty slow and tired, but found a mid-run spring in my step which had just moving down the trail. After the run, I headed down to Kent to deliver some Thai food and join Jonathan on his store run. All the joys of the flats of Kent.

Thursday and I began to wonder where the week had gone. I was in full blown cold/flu status by this point and had a hard time getting myself up in the morning (i.e. I didn't get up) before storytime to run. Storytime went well, even though a smaller audience than the past few weeks. I wanted to run, but had a hard time getting myself out the door. I had gone home to try and feel better and relax, but it didn't produce immediate results. I decided to pester Jonathan who had to work late into seeing if he wanted to run when he got off work. He did and despite being exhausted after a long day, got me out the door and we went on my 10.5 mile loop around West Seattle, again hitting sub 7s most of the way. We decided he is the bestest ever-est person for many reasons not the least of which is still being my friend despite my numerous attempts to ruin his life (well, not on purpose), putting my feet in some great shoes and letting me drag him out at all manner of hour to run, among other reasons. The run felt great and there were a surprising number of people out running for 11pm!

Today, I decided to run to meet Tara for breakfast and then to work. I had thought in theory I would run before work and then run too work, but the late night run (and subsequently going straight to bed) rendered me without too much energy. It has been a good beginning to my taper. This week is a gradual step down and I am focusing on just rest, rest, rest and feeling happy, healthy and good. I like how things are shaping up!