Prep for today’s half-marathon (not a race, just the distance) started yesterday morning with my easy bike ride and carb-heavy eating 🙂 I met the boys from work for pizza at Homeslice, an authentic New York pizza place on South Congress that I’ve heard about since the second I arrived. Surprisingly I’ve been here more than a month and despite at least 4 long runs, haven’t had any pizza at all. It was time to change that!
Eating with two “elite” (in “” because I consider them elite, they would never call themselves that) athletes is a little bit of a challenge. J for one, is a semi-strictly paleo (future) triathlete champion, so pizza’s not on his list of foods he can eat. BUT the whole purpose of this trip to Homeslice was that pizza is his favorite guilty food and he was ready to ditch the caveman lifestyle for the night. Then there’s H, a gluten-free long distance speedster. And he’s not semi-strict, he’s all the way strict on the gluten. So I called Homeslice to see if they had any gluten free options, this is Austin after all.
Me: Hi, do y’all have any gluten free pizza?
Homeslice: Unfortunately we have alotta gluten in all of our pizzas.
Well shoot. So the plan became for me and J to grab take out from Homeslice and walk it up to the South Congress trailer park where H would have to hope that he could rummage up some gluten-free food. Taking out at Homeslice involves waiting in line to place your order at a walk-up window. We were just ordering by the slice so our options were a little more limited than flavors of pies (pretty typical of by-the-slice places): cheese, pepperoni and margherita are available all the time and yesterday they also had a white slice with spinach and mushrooms and sausage. I ordered margherita and an Amstel Light.
We sat on the curb with the other people devouring their slices and I sipped my beer while we talked a little bit about running and fitness, and a lot about our past two or three years of life. When our slices were ready (not a long wait at all), I had to down my beer (not allowed off the property) and we walked to the trailers. H managed to find some gluten free Indian food at Nomadosa (I can’t wait to go back and try it myself!) and we ate. J wasn’t quite satisfied so he found a trailer with some jambalaya and fries (semi-strict remember…) – oh to be a man.
It was a pleasant night so we sat around the picnic tables for a while telling stories of mischief and training and continuing to get to know each other. They’re good guys, and I’m thinking will be a positive influence on my training – lots of knowledge in those heads.
I was ready to go this morning. Pizza and beer in the belly, legs rested and mind prepped for 13.1 miles on the road and Gary with me, I hit the road a little after 7. I took the Shoal Creek Trail down towards the lake. I’ve heard about this “hike and bike” trail and thought it was about time to check it out. It’s partly paved, partly very rocky and I was glad I had never tried to ride my bike home on this trail before! Definitely mountain bike material, possibly hybrid bike but I’m not gonna be the one to try it! I enjoyed the trail on foot though – the terrain was different than the lake trail and I liked crossing under all the bridges.
Running towards downtown and along the lake was wonderful – down hill and flat! Then I knew I would have to climb back up the incline to get home.
The first ten miles felt fantastic – I watched my pace closely on Gary and was surprised when “easy” was sub-9.
You can see I started to feel it around mile 9 when my average pace dropped significantly – and then at 11 I hit the hills. I’m pleased with how well the first ten went, but still have a lot of work to do! It took 1:56:24 and I need to shave 9 minutes off that for a PR and 11 for the big, fast goal…..10 weeks to go!
I was so thirsty when I got home, I drank two big glasses of ice water first. I also was pleasantly surprised when I found a frozen chocolate milk carton in the freezer – it was like a milkshake was waiting for me. My stomach doesn’t tolerate solid food very well for the first hour so I’ve gotten in the habit of sucking down a serving of 1% chocolate milk (sometimes when it’s cold, I’ll go for a mocha or hot chocolate – but that hasn’t happened here yet) and then taking a nap on the couch.
By the time my nap’s done, I’m pretty hungry and today I feasted.
- One serving steel cut oats with pumpkin mixed in (plus cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice)
- 2 eggs scrambled with spinach and salsa
- Bowl of fruit: watermelon, blueberries and strawberries
- Cup of black tea, serving of V8 juice, glass of water
I don’t have a microwave so I’ve started making steel cut oats and I love them! They don’t take too much longer and I like their taste better. Just boil 3/4 c water or milk and add 1/4 c oats and simmer until the thickness matches your preference – takes less than ten minutes!
For the protein! Plus I like a little savory with my sweet oatmeal.
Lots of fluids – water obviously, tea because usually when I’m up from my nap I’m pretty chilly post-run and V8 because I love veggies! All the drinks aren’t even pictured! Don’t forget the immediately post-run chocolate milk 🙂
Phew – big morning here in Austin, TX. Now I have to be a student again…..