Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Dovekeepers & a Speed Workout

Yep, The Dovekeepers deserves its very own post because it took me nearly the entire month of March to finish it.

I typically listen to audiobooks instead of reading (passes commuting time quickly!) and so I judge the length of books by the number of CDs rather than the number of pages.  This was a lonnnggg one and I considered not even starting it because it was a whopping 16 CDs.  The books I've been listening to lately including The Girl Who Chased the Moon are around 8 CDs in comparison.  Shorter is usually better in my mind (Harry Potter is an exception!).  I requested the Game of Thrones from the library after hearing several recommendations for it, but when I saw it was 23 discs I didn't even take it home! 

Here's how Amazon summarized it: "In 70 C.E., nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on Masada, a mountain in the Judean desert. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic and iconic event, Hoffman’s novel is a spellbinding tale of four extraordinarily bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path."

Anyway, this book was interesting.  I liked it and hated it all at the same time.  It was written from 4 different women's perspectives, and I really liked the 2nd and 3rd perspective.  The 1st one had me thinking of not even finishing the book, and the last one reverted me back to not liking the book.  I wish they had quit after the 3rd section, quit while you're ahead I say.  Overall this book was just much too long, and I found it a little hard to believe that all these super religious women were so liberal / promiscuous.  The book reminded me of The Red Tent, although I enjoyed The Red Tent much more, I recommend you read that book over this one.

Next up is Garden Spells, which is our next book club book.  Anyone want to read along with me?

In running news, on Tuesday I dragged Jordanne along for our first speed workout of our Seattle Rock n Roll Marathon training plan (which hasn't officially started yet, Monday marks the first official day).  Poor Lisa tried to come but for the first time ever the gym's daycare was full.  What the heck.  Ridiculous.

This race may be the death of me.  We shall see if I survive the training.

On the agenda was 6 x 400's.  The McMillan Pace Calculator (have you used this before?  If not I highly recommend it) says my goal should be 1:41 for a 400 but we all know McMillan is quite ambitious for me for the shorter distances based on my half marathon times.  I am apparently just a prodigy freak of nature and am way better at running a half marathon than at running a 5k or sprints around the track.

My 400 splits ended up being:

1:52 (7:28)
1:50 (7:13)
1:51 (7:24)
1:48 (7:08)
1:47 (7:09)
1:50 (7:22)

For a total of 6 miles in 54:40 (Average Pace: 9:06). 

The last time I did this workout (which was way back on February 6) my SLOWEST 400 was 1:46 - faster than my fastest today.  Blurgh.  Shouldn't I be faster now considering I've run 2 half marathons since then?  Well, you gotta start somewhere.

What are you reading / listening to right now?  Do you do speedwork?  Doesn't it SUCK?  I think so.