One day MAF hall pass

The site of my last trail race

The site of my last trail race

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have picked up on the fact that I am running a 25k trail race this weekend. And you might have wondered how I could keep my heart rate low during such an effort. The answer is, I can’t.

I’ve had this race on my radar for a couple of months, and recently decided that I really wanted to do it. I don’t want to jeopardize my MAF training, however, so before moving forward, I emailed the Sock Doc to get his input. His take on it–go ahead and take a one-day break from the low heart rate. Just what I wanted to hear!

So now I get to go out and play in the mud on Sunday. I don’t expect this to be any great race result because for one, I am pretty inexperienced at trail racing. For two, while I am improving at running at a low heart rate, I am not in race shape! It’s been over two months now since I’ve done any speedwork, so trying to go fast will surely feel like a shock to the system. But this isn’t about that–it’s just about being on the trails and not having to look at my heart rate for one day. It’s going to feel pretty freeing I am sure.

The downside to this race is the timing–I’ll be missing my kids doing a triathlon the same morning. I was really conflicted on this one, believe me, and I’m taking a heavy dose of mommy guilt with me to the trails. But my philosophy is that if I am at the majority of their events–and I am–it’s ok for me to miss one here or there. It’s also not a bad thing for kids to know that their parents have lives outside of theirs.

I do a bit of trail running around here, whenever I can, but the last trail race I did was in Australia three years ago, a 35k. It was on a big mountain and it was tough! But I loved it and it definitely whet my appetite for doing more. Can’t wait to get out there this weekend!

Who else loves the trails? Doing your own race vs. watching your kids–how would you decide? 


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  1. says

    That’s awesome you’re taking a break and running a trail race! I think the lack of speed work will be ok for this, especially if there are technical sections. Plus, trail running itself it such a reward!
    Cute that your kids are in a tri! I think it’s more than ok you’re missing it. By the sounds of it, you are there for so many of their events and support them in so many ways. And they can proudly tell people their mom is racing, too!
    Good luck to all three of you, and enjoy your day on the trails without worrying about your HR!
    Abby @ Change of Pace recently posted..Change the pace – exercising in hot, hot heatMy Profile

  2. says

    Have fun! It’s really great that you can take a one day break from MAF training and I know that you’ll enjoy it. It’s always hard when you have to make a choice between your own race vs. the kids. I too think that it’s more than OK that you’re missing it. It’s not like you miss every one of their events. Good luck to all three of you! Have fun on the trails!
    Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..On Teachers and Students (or How to Rationalize an Embarrassing Moment)My Profile

  3. says

    I have to admit, I am a wee bit jealous. I adore the trails back there! I hope you enjoy every second. I ran the North Face Endurance Challenge DC after two days of a downpour, there was mud up to our knees, it was tough and fun at the same time. Good luck Amanda!!
    LisaM@RunWiki recently posted..Staying on my wagonMy Profile

  4. says

    I love trails – in theory. When it comes to practice there are some things I don’t really like – hills (going up), hills (going down if it’s slippery underfoot), falling over roots and swallowing bugs. But I love the rest.
    Char recently posted..Don’t Mess With MeMy Profile

  5. says

    I love and live for the trails! I am going through the same with my kids and family at the moment. My son have a choir performance on Friday 2 August at 15:30. He really wants to be there as they have practiced so hard. Problem… we need to leave at 14:00 for my race the following morning. I might skip this race for my son’s choir. They do so much in supporting me I have to consider this. Tough indeed! All the best with your race and enjoy!
    Johann recently posted..My Running/Training NemesisMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      I have found that since switching to minimalist shoes, I do better in regards to turned ankles…I think you get a better ground feel and that makes the difference. That said, now I’ll probably sprain my ankle!

  6. tracy says

    yay for a pass so you can have a little trail fun!

    i’m on trails almost exclusively any more. the laid back, peaceful atmosphere jibes w my current season of life (insanely busy!).

    and i’m w u on the kid events. i hate to miss them, but i’m at 99% percent of them so missing one here or there is ok.

  7. says

    Good luck & have fun! Agree with Holly & Abby that lack of speedwork probably won’t have an impact on your race. One of the things I love about trail races is the fact that all times/paces go out the window, so you can just relax and enjoy the scenery…and flying down the hills. Descending is my favorite part of trail running! Good luck to your kids too! Know it’s tough, but hope that mommy guilt disappears as soon as you hit the trails. You’re an incredible mom, and your kids know how much you love them!
    Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama recently posted..Sturdy Girl Sports Apparel ReviewMy Profile

  8. Terzah says

    I think you’re going to run faster than you expect! Have fun! :^)

    I would miss a kid event for sure–like you said, not often, but you *do* need to show you have your own life. I think men are better at rolling with this. My husband missed the kids’ last T-ball game and team picnic earlier this week for a violin thing and it didn’t ruffle him (or the kids) one little bit.

    • MissZippy says

      I think you are spot on here, Terzah! Mine misses a ton for work, travel, etc and he doesn’t blink an eye!

  9. says

    Hooray for a short MAF break while you race! Have a great time on the trail race!! And, hopefully you can let the mom guilt go (I know – easier said than done!!)!! Your kids know that you are proud of them and love cheering them on even if you can’t be at every single event!!!
    Kim recently posted..Ways to Stay Entertained on a Car TripMy Profile

  10. says

    OH the kids vs. race dilemma – I try to blend both now while I’m still faster than them – race, then run back to watch them. They’re getting faster so I’m starting to lose my model and am going to have to pick soon :(
    Sheila recently posted..Going The DistanceMy Profile