Sunday, February 8, 2009

Zone 2, Zone 2 wherefore art thou Zone 2?

The FLU challenge this week is to stay in zones 1 through 3 all week and to rack up between 2500 and 3500 calories. We are not to dare venture into zone 4 lest we incur the wrath or the challenge lords or at least forfeit points on the challenge which will ultimately determine who wins the massages, personal training, awe and admiration of the other team (or perhaps not so much awe and admiration as jealousy and disdain ...).

I have no problem at all getting to 2500 calories, I easily burn 3500 most weeks. The zone thing would prove to be more of a challenge than I thought. My initial plan was to get my weekly long run in yesterday but my quads had a different idea. I am up for 10 miles accroding to my schedule. My quads were so tight (and still are) there was no way I could run yesterday. I was trying to figure out what I did to cause them to hurt but the only thing I can figure is the extra running this week? Who knows... Either way, ouch!

The thing with being on a schedule for an upcoming race is that there is not a whole lot of flexibility. If you don't get the miles in, there is not much room to move things around and work it in elsewhere, especially if you are a 8 to 5 working girl like me. So, since I opted not to run yesterday, there was no getting out of the run today. My legs still were still tight so I contemplated just running out on some of the flatter roads around my house but ended up going to Stone Mountain as per usual.

I got an ipod nano over Christmas which I was excited to try out. I downloaded an audio book, The Heretic's Daughter, and hit the road. I do not know why it never occured to me before how great it would be to listen to a book while trying to run down some training miles. It was perfect and got my mind off the major task at hand which was ticking off 10 miles.

The secondary task at hand was trying to keep in zone 3 or below. Honestly, I thought this would be a piece o' red velvet cake whole grain low fat granola bar. Not so... Before today, I would have said that I mostly ran in zone 2. I rarely feel like I am pushing myself all that hard. I was wrong. In my run today, I ran on the top edge of zone 3 almost the entire time. I really only backed down into zones 1 & 2 on downhill sections. It was difficult the first 5 miles to keep my rate from crossing over into zone 4. A couple of the hills, I had to stop and walk to keep my heart rate down. I got a better feel for controlling it on the second 5-mile loop but was still surprised at how slow I felt I had to run to keep out of zone 4. It really was interesting to see how much harder I push myself than I thought. So, between the audio book and the obsession with checking my heart rate every few seconds I was plenty distracted to forget about the distance!

Nutrition... I am pretty proud of myself thus far. I stocked up on grapes, carrots, so on and so forth and at this point have nothing in my house that might be tempting which is an accomplishment in and of itself. I am a serious snackhound so to try and turn that part of my eating around is quite the task. So far, so good! Last night, we had mahi with jasmine rice, fruit salsa and bruseel sprouts. It was awesome if I do say so myself!

Side note, I got the best peanut butter yesterday. Holy Moly, yummmmmmmm! Naturally Nutty Foods Butter Toffee. Yes, I ordered peanut butter online. It was I saw this on another blog, Run to Finish , and could not resist. If you LOVE peanut butter (that won't give you salmonella...), this is a must try!

That is my story for this weekend, gotta run, the laundry has overtaken the living room and is screaming to be put away. Exciting stuff!

1 comment:

Kevin said...

I have been doing my training by HR zones this year and I too have noticed how hard it is to even try to run in Z2.