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Day 106 – 5 miles

31 Oct

My first 10K is this Saturday and I am excited to get this accomplishment under my belt.  I love that any time I go for a new race it is a  personal record! The training for the 10K part of this journey has definitely not been the best.  I started off with the shoulder injury and then followed up with some wicked bronchitis.  Thank goodness for the advice of others who told me to lay off while I had the bronchitis.  I look at the pictures of the race a few weeks ago and I really looked worn out.  But I am feeling so much better now and ready to keep pushing forward.  Had my training gone as planned I would have been steadily increasing to the 6 miles for the 10K, but of course life is rarely as we plan it.  Therefore, I decided to jump up to 5 this weekend so that I would not feel so worried about the 6.2 coming next week.

The run went surprisingly well!

5 Miles = 56:06

This is about a 11:13 pace which is a little higher than I would like but for my first attempt I am just ecstatic to have made it! This run was the first time I have EVER run 5 miles in my life.  And I know I have said this a million times before but I would never have believed in 3 months I would grow this much.  The picture is me attempting to smile when really I was about to fall over from exhaustion! I was so hungry and tired after this run.  My breathing was very consistent and not labored at all, but my hips were really aching by the end.  But I made it! 

As the distance increases so does my need for new running gear and toys. 😉  My newest and maybe favorite addition to date  is the FuelBelt 10-ounce Palm Holder water bottle! This thing is amazing and I love love love it!  I find that a quick sip of water really helps with my breathing and endurance.  The water bottle is so comfortable and weighs next to nothing.  A great addition to my runs!

The other thoughts that will not leave my head were about endurance from the church sermon this weekend. Although the endurance speaks to our spiritual endurance, our pastor was relating his message to all aspects of life, marriage, work, etc and it really hit deep with me as I continue on this fitness journey.  The series is called Supernatural and the teaching was on endurance.  When faced with a “desert” or obstacle in your life will you dry up, get soft, and stray off? Or will you go deeper, grow stronger, and get focused.

More simplly stated he said to tell yourself:

I can’t…

*dry up

*get soft

*stray off

I will…

*go deeper

*grow stronger

*get focused

To do this you have to

—> be still (rest and listen) —> so you can go deeper

—>say “I can still fight” (demand endurance) —> so you can grow stronger

—> say “I still have things to do” (no excuses) —> so you can get focused

Running has definitely not been a walk in the park for me, I have felt sore, apathetic,  exhausted, defeated, and ambivalent at times but I have to remind myself to DEMAND ENDURANCE.

Day 106 advice – go deeper, grow stronger, and get focused

 

 

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Day 86 – hard work ain’t cute! :o)

11 Oct

My training schedule is a off this week because of taking time off for my shoulder and the 5K I have coming up on Saturday.  I went to do 4 miles on Monday but because of a light mist and a cold/cough, I quickly decided that 3 miles was enough. I ran 3 miles in 34:25 because I had to add in a few short walks.

Today was my 2 mile + strength day.  On these days, I like to push myself as hard as I can pace wise.  Through some new fitness friends/mentors I have been learning so much about the different types of training you can do for running.  I am definitely training for distance as opposed to speed.  However, on these 2 mile days I push as hard as possible so my body works outside of it’s “pace” once a week.  Today I ran on the treadmill because of the rain.

2 miles = 17:08!

This is definitely my fastest 2 mile time to date – 8:34/mile. I wish I could say that I was just cruising through this pace with ease but I was not. I was working – hard! I love to run these 2 mile runs because it allows me to really push my hardest.  At my 10:00/mile pace, I am working but I am comfortable.  At this pace, I am pushing, and let me tell you, it ain’t pretty! 🙂 Just to prove this fact, I took a charming picture of myself when I was done! I ALWAYS get a red face when I run and this red face typically lasts for a few hours.  And although you can see that a little in this picture, in real life this was multiplied by about 10!  I am pointing all of this out to say that although it gets easier, pushing yourself is never easy.  Today at the gym I know people were probably worrying I was about to pass out based on the color in my face, but internally I was doing just fine. Although it has always made me nuts that my face goes to shades of scarlet, at least I know it is from hard work!

 

Day 86 advice = Push yourself, even when you look crazy doing it! 🙂

Day 81 – Bum shoulder

6 Oct

I have been very lucky so far in this journey not to hurt anything.  Unfortunately I have problematic shoulders/scapula that I have had since I was a teenager.  I had arthroscopic surgery on both shoulders at 15 and 16 and it was minimallysuccessful and a very slow recovery.  I spent a lot of time in physical therapy and although they would flare up every now and again they were never quite as bad as before.  Over the years I have been able to get it down to a pretty good science of controlling the pain.  Then after all this time, I woke up on Tuesday in major pain! I went to get a massage that night hoping for some relief, and while it did help temporarily, when I woke up Wednesday I was still hurting.  I went to work but left by 10:00 because I was in so much pain.  The reason it is so frustrating is because the only way to really relieve all of the pressure is to lie on your back, which you can’t do real well as a teacher!! 🙂  I first headed to the chiropractor to get adjusted.  After lying in bed for several hours I went to the doctor that afternoon and because of the inflammation and spasms he put me on steroids and muscle relaxers.  After mobilizing it in a sling all day today and then doing some stretches tonight, it is starting to feel better.  The point of all of this though is that I have not been able to run all week! 😦 After my first 4 mile run, I was feeling so excited to press forward.  If the sling and steroids help this much again tomorrow, I will be trying to run on Saturday for sure.  I will be beginning physical therapy on Monday and there is almost a sense of relief in that. I know that the physical therapy was very instrumental in reducing the pain in the past.  And I definitely don’t mind being forced to add strength training 2-3 times a week to my regimen for the next 4-6 weeks.  When my upper body is strong, I feel stronger all together!  In the scheme of things it is only 1 week off but it feels like a million years after running so consistently the last few months.

Day 80 advice – Listen to your body and know when to take a break (even when you don’t want to 🙂 )

Day 70 – Under 30 minutes!

25 Sep

Yesterday was a day that I will remember forever.  Although I had a great time at the Kaiser Permanente run, this experience was completely different.  The race was the Be the Match, Be the One race which supports the national marrow donor registry. The race is a fundraiser for the program so I decided to participate because I am a registered donor.  There were many people there who were either survivors or were running in memory of someone who passed away.  The event was very family friendly so we all got to participate!

I have to first say that I have the most amazing husband in the world who was willing to wake up at 6:00 on a Saturday morning to make this day possible. We got the kids dressed and were on our way.  I ran in the 5K, Glen accompanied Alana in the 1K, and Cameron ran the 25 yard tot trot! The kids were very proud of themselves.  Here they are after getting their numbers.

I took off first for the 5K and was pleased when I got to the 1 mile marker in 8:21 because there were no major hills.  After seeing this I was really hoping to break 30  minutes, a goal I did not think would be possible. During mile 2, I definitely struggled more as the hills increased and right at the 2 mile marker was the largest hill of the course and I definitely felt it!!  I made it through the course without walking and noticed that I was passing people who earlier passed me and were now walking.  There is definitely something to be said about pacing yourself to run the whole race and not get burnt out.  The race had an awesome finish line set-up and soon after hitting the 3 mile marker you could hear the crowd cheering you on to the finish.  It is a huge motivator and I knew I was so close to making 30 minutes that I ran my heart out at the end.  By my watch, I made it across the finish at 30:15 which I was super happy about.  That was 3 and a 1/2 minutes faster than my first race. A great accomplishment. I was on cloud nine when we went to watch my little boy run his first race.  He did so awesome! Here he is stretching with big sister before the race started.

I didn’t get to see Alana run, but Glen said she did awesome as well and the course was actually pretty hard.  I was a very proud mommy yesterday.

As if that was not all enough, I checked the official times last night and my official time was 29:58!!!!!!!!!! I made it in under 30 minutes (even if it was only by 2 seconds). 🙂

Overall, it was an incredible day and I continue to be motivated by my friends, family, and others around me. I have a vision of what I want to accomplish and each step along the way gets me closer to the me I see.  This experience has been an incredible blessing with benefits both mentally and physically.  I am looking forward to my fist 4 mile run next Saturday!

Day 57 – Phase 2!

12 Sep

With my first 5K under my belt, and 4 blissful days of rest, I am excited to move into the next training schedule and start training for a 10K in November or December.  This next phase will get me another step closer to my ultimate goal, the Disney Princess half-marathon in February! 🙂 At this point, I cannot imagine being able to complete a half-marathon.  I have to remind myself that I felt that way about the 5K and with the right training, I was able to complete a 5K with about seven weeks training.  I have to repeat from previous posts that I love the training program because you gain distance each week, in small attainable amounts, until all the sudden you are running more than you ever thought you could.  I can promise you that when I started this I would never have thought I would be saying things like “oh tomorrow’s not bad, it’s only 2 1/2 miles.” ONLY?!? 😛

This 10K training definitely begins full steam ahead.  It is 6 days on(2 runs, 1 run/strength, 2 cross, 1 strength/stretch)/1 day off which will be a challenge.  The running schedule is very similar to what I was doing, but the strength sessions are new and there is an extra cross session.  I will play it by ear for now but want to have at least 3 runs, 1 cross, 2 strength each week.  The distance increases quickly and by week 4, 3 miles is the shortest distance.  Along the way, I have two 5K’s that I plan on running. Last Spring I joined the Be The Match national marrow registry and am looking forward to participating in the Be the One Run next weekend.  I have another 5K planned for October to help me get some more race experience. I am very excited!!!

 

Day 57 Advice = Keep going! And work hard. There is no shortcut to any place worth going.

Day 42 – 11 Days until my first 5K!

28 Aug

I’m almost there! Only 11 more days until my first 5K.  I have been dreaming about running a 5K since my Freshman year at WMU when I volunteered for the Campus Classic on Homecoming day.  I volunteered every year for the next 4 years and loved it but I was always wondering in the back of my head why I didn’t just sign up and run. After graduation, life took over and I never took the time to accomplish the goal.  So now 12 years after volunteering for that first 5K, I am finally going to run in one!

I have definitely improved over the last several weeks but I am not quite there yet. Counting today I have five more times to run before the race so I want to make sure I make them worthwhile.   It is much easier to run in the morning, but this race begins at 7:00 at night. Therefore I am going to try to simulate the race by running outside and running at the same time of day.  Today was the first of the 5 runs until the race and I went running but didn’t clock the distance until afterwards. 

2.6 Miles = 29:25

Although I felt like I had run a little further distance wise I am still happy with this time considering the course was quite hilly.  I am looking forward to running with Glen sometime this week and think having someone with me will definitely help! Also I have to say that the number of people who read my blog, comment on it, are inspired/encouraged by it is an incredible motivator.  Thank you for reading and thank you for the encouragement and I am glad it has sparked other people to get training too!

Days 3 and 4

21 Jul

Day 3

I drove 14 hours home and arrived to a clean home and hot Chinese food! Needless to say I opted for the scheduled rest.  I did take the time to ice and stretch though because I was feeling sore from the day before and then sitting in the car all day.  After that I went to bed and slept for 10 1/2 hours!!! Apparently my travels and the beginning of training had me entirely worn out!

Day 4

I woke up feeling pretty sore but knew I needed to just get up and get going.  Today’s plan was run 1 1/2, walk to cool down.  To clarify, although a half marathon is my ultimate goal, for a novice runner like myself, it begins with 5K training.  For these first 8 weeks, I will be following a 5K training schedule, adjusting it if I am eventually able to outrun the goal time/distance.  Right now though, I’m barely making it :o)   Today I only made it through the first mile running and then had to walk the second mile.  My legs felt like ten ton weights that I could barely lift!  I was disappointed I only ran the first mile but I know I just have to keep going.  There are also several things to get figured out as I keep training.  One is location: Right now I am running on tracks to easily keep distance and for some extra support on my shins/hips.  I tried a track today that ended up feeling like a heat trap – no breeze and set down in more covered area, it felt like just me and the sun in a battle til the end – the sun won! Next I need to look into getting an inhaler again.  I always had an inhaler during sports in high school, and although I have continued to work out through the years, in my opinion nothing leaves you as breathless as running.  Today I could not wait to get to the car and use my daughter’s inhaler.  After I took it, it was like a belt wrapped around my lungs released!  Probably a pretty good indication that I need to get my own inhaler. The last thing  I will need to work on and consider is my diet and what food I am eating, learning what foods are good fuels for running.  Because right now from even this little bit of exercise, I am ravenous! :o/

Training to be a runner is definitely hard work but I am glad I am able to keep a positive attitude, joke about my shortcomings, and share my pains and accomplishments with a great supporter, my husband, Glen.  I will be dragging him along this journey as well and we will be doing the first 5K together, more to come on that later!

Day 4 advice: Get up, get going.