When the whole ‘magazine mocks a cancer-survivor runner’ gets into Jezebel, you know it’s relatively mainstream. But, let’s all step off our outrage (and stop trying to boycott everything all the time) for a second and recognize our complicity. When every magazine runs a chart ranking things that are cool v. lame at the back of the issue and every media outlet makes fun of whatever is deemed fair game — and, don’t even lie, you probably make fun of people too — it seems disingenuous to be disgusted now simply because this girl you laughed at had cancer. It’s not the cancer that makes the laughing wrong. At least own that. Yes, the magazine misjudged its audience, but really the nasty lie was asking her for her photo and not telling her what it would be used for. That lie is the only lie that’s worse than the ones we’re telling ourselves.

http://jezebel.com/maybe-dont-mock-a-cancer-fighting-marathoners-tutu-1553037512

California International Marathon

Time to run.

Ate a whole bunch of food. Got my race number. Have my layers and layers of warm clothes ready for the 20 degrees in the morning. Picked a race outfit too, naturally.

image

Yes, Tupac helped me pick the outfit, but he didn’t come with us. We were considering it – if we got one of those little pet backpacks. Instead, Steve is going to bike all over and I’m going to try to run fast enough to be in the right spots at the right times.

All of you better be thinking of me and judging me if I don’t do good. That way when it starts to hurt, I’ll know I have to go faster or all my internet fans will hate me. Obviously.

#6228 tomorrow

Why Are My Running Shorts Rubbing My Thighs?

My problem of the week (besides a debilitating lack of sleep, a shitty immune system, a general feeling of falling apart) is that all, ALL, of my shorts are rubbing the inside of my thighs when I run.

I own a lot of running shorts. Like lots. Some are cute — the most important thing — and some are not. But, in the last year, many of them started to rub the inside of my thighs, creating nasty red welts at the end of runs. I bought new shorts. Now, all of them are rubbing. Even my sturdy, dependable Brooks shorts, which are NOT cute but are efficient; their primary perk being that they did. not. rub.

Not attractive. But that was what I sacrificed for a lack of rubbing.
Not attractive. But that was what I sacrificed for a lack of rubbing.

Now? Sigh. Nasty red welts.

My nice Nike Rival shorts (which are apparently no longer available, so that was a brief lifespan, since they were new in the spring)? Also rubbing now.

Race shorts. Make you go faster.
Race shorts. Make you go faster.

The Lululemon shorts I had already rejected earlier this year. My normal, standard, everyone owns them Nike Tempo shorts are ok, but bunch weird. And, the Oiselle Roga shorts I’ve been making my racing shorts lately? They have only rubbed a little, so far. SO FAR. (But, let me tell you sweat on Orange shorts does not look attractive.)

All the shorts rub right on the edge of the material on the inside thigh, typically the right inside thigh. I don’t think my thighs are fatter than they have been — factually speaking. I don’t think I’m running different. It seems to happen more in the summer, so it may have something to do with being all sweaty and the shorts sticking (in the past, shorts only rubbed that badly when they were wet and it was raining), but it’s been happening more and more for the last year. So, I dunno? Maybe I just suck.

Internet, tell me what to do.

Do your shorts rub? It hurts right?

 

Winner: Injinji Socks

Since none of you guessed that I would drop out of Boston (you all evidently have more faith in me than warranted), I wasn’t totally sure who would be our massive giveaway winner of the Injinji socks.

Injinji socks. Yeah, they look stupid, but inside your socks no one can see.
Injinji socks. Yeah, they look stupid, but inside your shoes no one can see.

But, I think, technically, whoever guessed the slowest time would be closest to not finishing, right? And that would be Bri with her 3:16:30 guess — which is still quite far from how long it would have really taken.

Bri – email me and I’ll send you socks!

What Should I Wear for Boston?

I’m about to shower and head to the airport and get into Boston at midnight tonight. When I booked the ticket, I thought ‘oh, getting in at 12:50 a.m. won’t be bad, that’s like 9:50 on the West Coast.’ But, then I realized by the time I get to the hotel, it’ll be like 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning and then I have to be ready to be on East Coast time by Monday morning. Clearly, I thought this through.

My foot is actually better since the cortisone shot. It’s not hurting anymore. But, when I ran 4.2 miles yesterday, with a fast mile in the middle, everything else started hurting. My left hamstring feels like it’s ripping out of my ass. My right IT band is pulling on my knee. The whole rest of the day yesterday it felt like I’d run a really hard race at that pace, not one mile at that pace. Another 22 miles on top of that is going to be interesting.

The really important question, though, is what to wear for the BOSTON MARATHON on Monday? I need opinions.

Originally, I planned to wear my new Nike shorts that I bought last month. But, the first time I wore them was the track workout where I hurt my foot. So, they have bad juju. If I wear those shorts, then I’ll also wear the new Northface race tanktop I bought on my shopping spree last week (which is bright yellow – not white like it looks in this picture).

My planned, new race outfit.
My planned, new race outfit.

However, I have bad feelings about these shorts, because obviously they caused my foot injury. So, the other day, I bought some new Oiselle shorts when I was checking out a new running store. Everyone keeps raving about Oiselle, but the first time I picked up cute long-sleeve shirt, it was $76! I just set it back down and backed away slowly. But, these shorts were regular priced ($44). Only problem is they’re bright orange, so I’m not going to wear a bright yellow tanktop with bright orange shorts. I’m not ridiculous. If I wear the new Oiselle shorts, then I’ll wear one of these older white tanktops I’ve worn billions of times — which is why they’re not really that white anymore.

The shorts are actually completely orange, they just look all splotchy, because they're wet. I think.
The shorts are actually completely orange, they just look all splotchy, because they’re wet. I think.

Thoughts? Suggestions? I’m taking both outfits and will just decide there.

I will also, obviously, be wearing gloves, but I haven’t decided between the super fancy running gloves, which if I get too hot I’ll have to shove into my sports bra, and a regular cheap pair of cotton ones that I can just dump at some point in the race.

Fancy running gloves.
Fancy running gloves.

And, just in case you thought I had something figured out, I also haven’t decided which shoes to race in. I was originally going to race in my Nike Lunaracers, because they’re awesome, but they’re also the shoes I was wearing during the track workout where my foot started hurting. So, again, bad juju — also they may have actually contributed to my foot hurting. I’ve been wearing my Mizuno Precisions for all my Alter-G running, because they’re the loosest of my shoes and didn’t rub my toe joint. So, I know they work, but they’re kind of heavy and not race shoes. I could also wear my Saucony Virratas, which I know I like, but I haven’t been running in them, so I think they could hurt my legs.

Agh. Thoughts?

Stuffing all these into one carry-on was interesting.
Stuffing all these into one carry-on was interesting.

Clearly I am super ready for this shit.

Expectations: Guess What I Will Run at Boston (and WIN)

I started out training for Boston around Thanksgiving — officially 20 weeks with Coach Mario — with the goal of 3:07-08. Since I ran the Oakland Marathon in 3:26 on sort of a ‘see what happens’ plan and then followed more or less the same plan, but with like faster paces and harder work, to run the Chicago Marathon in 3:17, I figured training for REAL would make 3:08ish a very solid goal.

Training was good. I killed it a lot, like all of January and February. I ran a 1:27:52 at the Kaiser Half Marathon. I started to think maybe more like a 3:04/05 would be possible.

Then, four weeks ago, I hurt my foot. I had four or five days of doing nothing really (during which I was supposed to get in my only real long runs), then a week of water running and Alter-G, then I got sick, then another few weeks of water running and Alter-Ging and biking and trying to run a couple times. It’s been hit or miss. I’ve gotten some work in, but not as much as planned obviously and almost nothing long, but still more training on the aggregate than my previous marathons.

Tuesday, I got the cortisone shot in my foot. The foot is starting to feel better, but running doesn’t feel so good now. It feels like something lots of people hate to do.

So, how fast am I going to run on Monday at the Boston Marathon? I have no fucking idea.

I’m not sure what kind of expectations to go in with. I’m pretty sure I’m still relatively fit. If my foot doesn’t hurt, I want to think I should be good. But, there’s a pretty decent probability the last six miles will suck. Of course, the last six miles will probably suck whether or not my foot hurts.

Here’s the fun part: Guess what time I will run and win two pairs of injinji socks!

Sports toe socks. My sister would be so excited.
Sports toe socks. My sister would be so excited.

Post your guesses in the comments. Whoever is closest I will send these two pairs (one low and one calf-high) of injinji socks to — the trendy thing right now in socks. [Side note: I was given a few pairs when I was visiting a PR company, unrelated to this blog, just because I am awesome. I’ve worn the ankle-high pair of socks a few times — though obviously I’m not running much right now — and they seem pretty good and comfortable. I mean they’re socks; I have no strong opinion. But, since everyone’s been raving about them lately, I figured I’d giveaway a couple of the unused pairs. Yay, free stuff!]

So, feel free to guess what you think will be most accurate. If you want to guess 3:35:40, I won’t feel bad. Maybe you’ll be more right than I am, though I hope you’re not, I hope you’re WRONG!

Pre-Race Shopping

Before big races, almost exclusive of what kind of taper or training I’m doing, I tend to get even lazier than I naturally am, having to work up the energy for the most minimal of workouts, and even more ambitious in my plans for what I’ll do just as soon as this episode of Law and Order: SVU finishes — the plans generally involve major life changes, fellowships, books, TV pilots. Also, I tend to go shopping.

Usually when I go shopping it’s because I like buying some fancy new thing for a race – because I already have race shorts and strong opinions about what you wear when you run fast. Buying something new for a race makes me feel special and important, just like any good woman in commercials. But, there’s also an part of it that’s just about the act of going to the mall. It’s where I go when I’m bored or stressed or anxious or bored or simply, in some way, want to feel the anonymity of being one of millions of people around the country also trying to solve their problems through purchase. The day Floyd died, after I finally got up off the couch, I put on a sweatshirt to go with my sweatpants and a huge pair of sunglasses, so I wouldn’t look crazy from all the crying, and went to the mall. (While at Kohl’s, in that outfit – complete with sunglasses indoors, a woman started quizzing me about if she could wear such-and-such pair of pants or if they were just for teenagers. Lady, no you shouldn’t wear them, but there aren’t really laws about this kind of thing unfortunately, and what about how I look suggests that I work here or that you should be asking me stuff?)

So, like usual, this week I have wanted to go shopping — looking for that undefined thing that I know I’m looking for, but can’t put my finger on. Shockingly, I’ve been having no luck. I don’t believe in trying things on and I have no patience, so I’ve walked in and out of stores, pronouncing everything ugly and sucky in a under a minute. I even walked in and out of Barnes and Noble. Twice.

Finally, I bought this new race tanktop from Northface:

It's FINE.
It’s FINE.

And, it’s ok (it may even be totally great for racing), but it’s not exciting and it just didn’t quell my pre-race shopping needs. Instead, I went to Target and bought nude heels. Which, obviously, I’m totally going to use for Boston.

Race shoes.
Race shoes.

And, now, tomorrow Steve heads off on some big trip and, then, Saturday I head to Boston. And, hopefully, by then, the cortisone shot will have fully taken effect — it’s sort of working so far? I dunno — and I’ll stop feeling antsy, or just a little antsy, and I’ll be ready to race Monday morning and then I will start drinking. Hmm, maybe I can go shopping in Boston…

Two Weeks Until Boston?

Today — after the weekend of accidental vomiting, many hours of Law and Order, and a futile trip to Target, which was apparently closed for some holiday — I did my first run outside.

I actually ran three miles on a treadmill last weekend and it went ok, but there was lots of soreness afterwards. So, when I ran three miles on the treadmill yesterday with no pain, the plan for today was: 30′ of running outside + 1:30 of running on the Alter-G with 2 x 30′ efforts. Very smart, very exciting, very last hard workout before Boston.

I even had a new super-cute tanktop from Old Navy, which I bought at their SALE when Target was closed. That’s what you get Target. This was the last picture of me being cute and optimistic today:

Yes, I am wearing skinny jeans. Don't worry. It doesn't happen often.
Yes, I am wearing skinny jeans. Don’t worry. It doesn’t happen often.

I thought running outside after two-and-a-half weeks of not moving anywhere during my workouts (besides my bike ride Saturday) would be so exciting that it would just sweep me along in a wave of sea breeze and lilacs. It didn’t. It turns out running at 100% body weight is heavier than running at 85% or 90%. I felt fat and slow and wheezy. Every minor uphill I became convinced I was the heaviest person to ever take up running.

I also became mildly convinced that, since I was running on a heavily trafficked path, someone would see me gasping and shuffling and it would ruin their image of me. How could I do that to them. It would shatter their world view. Of course, no one saw me or they did and they didn’t care, and I had to get over my bad self.

Then, I got back to Body Image after 45′ to run on the Alter-G and it went even farther and faster downhill.

My foot started hurting each footfall on the Alter-G, which doesn’t even make any sense. How can it not hurt at 100% body weight outside, but hurt at 75% body weight on the Alter-G? How??

It’ll go away, I told myself. Lately, it’s taken 10′-15′ to warm-up and then my foot stops hurting. But, it never did. I started the 30′ at 7:05 pace and moved the body weight slowly up to 85% and it hurt. I dropped it back down to 80% body weight and it hurt. I ran faster and it hurt. When I started the 30′ at 6:45 pace, I made it 10′ before I declared defeat. Really I probably should have before, but I didn’t want to. I wanted to get my one last hard workout in. I wanted the pain to go away. I wanted to feel confident with Boston two weeks from today.

But, none of those things happened. So, instead I cried a little and I pity-ate half an order of hotdog and garlic fries. I’ve been pity eating a lot. This does not help, in case you were wondering.

At this point, the only thing to do is continue to rest my foot and ice it and take anti-inflammatories and hope really hard. I really wish I hadn’t used up our Flector patches, because I’m pretty sure those things would zap the fucking inflammation right out of my foot. And, I’ll get through Boston, I’m pretty sure — with a little wishful thinking and mental toughness (at least that’s been getting some good training lately). And, the last ten miles will probably be painful as hell. And, I’ll probably deal with it. Probably.

Passport to the Boston Marathon

I heard about this blog project/idea/whatever where you take a photo for each hour of your day and post it. But, then, it turned out that my whole day would be pictures of my computer and a pile of notes. So, here is the one awkward selfie of me at the gym instead:

I'm going to practice my selfie expressions in the mirror. Like Tyra says.
I’m going to practice my selfie expressions in the mirror. Like Tyra says.

My Boston “passport” finally arrived, which apparently means all the information they don’t disclose on the internet like times and places to be.

GET READY FOR BOSTON!
GET READY FOR BOSTON!

This, apparently, also included a ticket to dinner. But, you don’t get to pick your time for dinner. The actual instructions say if you want a different time than your assigned time, then you should trade with another runner. So, um, let me know if all the cool kids are going to 5 p.m. dinner?

The idea of a dinner for everyone to go to at assigned times stresses me out.
The idea of a dinner for everyone to go to at assigned times stresses me out.

The whole “Passport to Boston” also included a catalog of all the special stuff you can buy as a special person who gets to go to a super special race — except I think maybe anyone can buy it. It may not come as a shock that I am not the type of person who typically buys merch from races, but part of me kind of wants to — because why not. I just got a tax refund, so let’s go shopping!

When women's clothes seem to have boobs in side of them, but no person, it weirds me out.
When women’s clothes seem to have boobs inside of them, but no person, it weirds me out.

The only problem is that all the men’s stuff is cuter than the women’s. I think. I mean, I’m still just getting my head around women’s cut shirts — why do we need V’s in our necks, is it for our massive boobs? — so when they try and make things feminine-y it confuses me.

This is probably the primary thing that is going to occupy my mind for the next 17 days.

See, men’s clothes:

 

That's like a fun sweatshirt and jacket, if they came in a smaller size.
That’s like a fun sweatshirt and jacket, if they came in a smaller size.
I actually really want the black jacket in the lower left corner. But, men's!
I actually really want the black jacket in the lower left corner. But, men’s!

And, the women’s stuff:

For some reason the women's version of the black jacket is white (in the upper left corner). I guess it's because we're like light and pure or something. But, it just looks so aggressive. What am I to do?
For some reason the women’s version of the black jacket is white (in the upper left corner). I guess it’s because we’re like light and pure or something. But, it just looks so aggressive. What am I to do?

I suppose in the next two weeks (I fly out two weeks from today!), I will also like read the rest of the passport and check my hotel reservations and make plans with the like half-dozen people I said I’d make plans with when I’m there and, you know, get race ready. I will probably also shop. It’s part of my taper.