Workouts - October 12, 2015 are the workouts for this past week!  I am racing on Sunday, so this was the "last hard week" before a little cutdown.  I really hope the hay is in the barn, because I'm about to burn that thing down!

Just your typical dual selfie in a hotel room hallway.  I cut bangs, BTW.  I just have so much forehead that I really do need them.  I just can't always handle them in the heat of summer.  And hopefully that is behind us now?

WARNING: this post will be verbose.  I just spent last night working through the night on a huge project, and now I'm trying to wind down and have a cup of coffee.  

Monday: 7.6 @ 8:48 around downtown Austin, Texas.  We traveled to Austin for my husband's work, and our hosts put us up in an apartment just north of the main city center.  On this trip, our days were completely packed from 7 am to 9 pm.  I'm not joking...the faculty coordinator gave us printed schedules that had only a few 15-minute breaks throughout the day.  I decided that I would just have to get started with my runs by 5:45 am, and set my alarm accordingly.

The view from our guest suite window.  I still can't believe that this is less than a mile from the main quad at UT.

What I totally failed to notice is that Austin is at the western edge of the Central time zone, and the sun doesn't come up until around 7:30 am this time of year.  And I packed black shorts and a black singlet.  Great.  Once I realized what was happening, I was already awake and dressed.  I figured I could just operate by my normal outdoor running motto, which is: "Pretend you are invisible, and every car is trying to hit you."  In other words, super cautious.  I was also a bit worried about just...general running safety (I know, I know, downtown Birmingham is probably WAY more dangerous than downtown Austin).  I try not to think too hard about that stuff, and I tend to assume that most people are kind and rational by nature.

Once I got out on the street, though, I immediately saw like seven other runners, including a few other women running alone.  Yes, the run was completely in the pitch black dark.  But is was entirely enjoyable.  I ran north until the numbered streets ended, then I made a U-turn back to the campus of UT.  By the time I got to campus, the morning rush hour was just beginning and people were biking and walking around with their first cups of coffee.  As I ran across the quad, the entire eastern sky was beginning to turn bright red.  I found a few rolling hills and navigated using landmarks all the way back to our guest suite.

That night's dinner was an AMAZING vegan nut burger from Hat Creek, along with a few house made unfiltered Saison beers. 

Half of the restaurant was outdoors, with a giant slide and play area for the kids. 

Tuesday: 7 @ 8:47 on a different route through Austin.  Another faculty member and runner recommend that I try a new city greenbelt along Lamar Boulevard.  I wanted a nice loop run, so I studied Google Maps for a while before deciding on a general plan.  I ran south across the entire UT campus, down Sixth Street (where there were still people out drinking, haha), and all the way back up Lamar.  As promised, the greenbelt was peaceful and obviously popular with local runners.  I just wish it had been light out!  And maybe that I had run the loop in reverse so I didn't run the whole greenbelt going uphill, haha.

Wednesday: 3.2 @ 8:30.  I started this run a bit too late, and my stomach didn't feel great.  But any run is better than no run, right?  We left UT and stopped off at my sister's house to let all the kids play together.


Thursday: 7 @ 9:14 on a treadmill.  Probably the most horrifying treadmill I have ever run on.  It was in a windowless, carpeted, un-air-conditioned room.  The entire room was probably 8x8 and contained a treadmill, an elliptical, a stationary bike, and a scale.  There was one mirrored wall and a television set on local news at full volume.  This run felt a lot harder than it should have, and my heart rate was oddly high the entire time as well.  Mystery.

The worst treadmill east of the Mississippi.

Friday: A lower body weights circuit and an hour-long vinyasa yoga class.

Saturday: 10.6 @ 8:34.  This was the last hard run before the race next Sunday.  It felt amazing.  Again, I ran with Myrna and a few other people from the 9:00 pace group who were upping their pace.  This included my friend Izzy who is the most positive, upbeat, and happy person ever.  He was drinking pickle juice and talking about how excited he was for Chattanooga, and I found it hilarious and motivating.  Good run.

Sunday: An hour-long spinning class.

Totals: 35.4 miles of running, including one treadmill slog and a longer run at tempo.  One weights session, a yoga class, and a spinning class.  No rest days!

Have a great week, everyone.