Wednesday, March 25, 2015

How did I end up here?

I'm still kind of in shock that I am doing this, that I am training for a half marathon. 

I did not start out on this running journey with that in mind!

When the words first came out of my mouth that maybe I would do a half I swear I was joking! Who was I kidding! Three miles is enough for me, no way I could add ten more to my run!

When I questioned myself "Wait, why couldn't I?" and really started to think about I decided I certainly could!

I began my training plan and decided that if I made it to 7 miles I would register...

Fate had other plans for me! I was sitting at home one morning browsing Facebook when I saw a contest! "Enter to win a Greenlayer and Run Like a Diva Prize Package" which included a free race registration for the race I was starting to train for! The Divas Half Marathon in N. Myrtle Beach. 

 I never enter contests! Mainly because I don't typically win these things, the odds are never in my favor! This contest simply asked you to say what being a Diva means to you! For whatever reason I did enter this one, I had nothing to loose! 

"Being a Diva will mean I have signed up for my first half marathon!!! I am currently training for it but haven't yet registered. Registering will mean I have decided to be brave and that I have gained the confidence to run it, to Run Like A Diva!!"

 Three days later I found out I WON!!!!!! 

I was and am still so excited!!!!! I won I won I won!!! Oh crap! Now I definitely have to do this!!! Ha!! I won the race registration and technical apparel from Greenlayer!!! 

Chances are that I would have talked a good talk about the possibility of running a half, I would have even tried, I would have gotten to five maybe six miles and then I would have given up! This has not been easy and several times I have wanted to throw in the towel! Fate intervened and gave me something that I had to push for!!!! I am so thankful and humbled to have won this and I can honestly say those long hard runs have become my most favorite and cherished!! I have this feeling of great achievement now every time I make it just a little bit farther!! Running May come naturally to some people but for so many it does not! I thank God for the ability to run, for my ability to find my strength and courage and for the opportunity to run this race!!

Women's National Running Series


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

In recovery, listening to my body

After my eight mile run I knew something was not right! 

My leg hurt from my hip down to my knee. I struggled  the next week and only got in two of my three recovery runs. 

I  ran nine miles the next week and had a great run but afterward I knew I was in trouble. Again the same pain down the right side of my right thigh and into the side of my knee. Still not realizing what was happening I went out the next Tuesday for my recovery run and I barely made it one mile. I knew to stop, I knew I was making my condition worse.

As it turns out I have a bit of inflammation of my IT Band. Most likely caused by adding so many miles so quickly and running on the right side of the greenway on my long runs that is a bit cambered. ITBS can be very serious if you don't allow your self to heal. Here is a great article by Runners World about ITBS.

I reluctantly elected to rest this entire past week. The last time I ran was last Tuesday! Yes I skipped my 10 mile training run for my upcoming half marathon!! I didn't want to but I knew it was best!

My half marathon is April 12th. I am feeling better. I have been stretching and taking Ibuprofen. I am up and at it this morning and heading out for an easy short run to determine what I think I can do this week. I hope I can go for 10.5 miles this coming weekend and 11.5 the next and then the next long run will be the HALF! 

Fingers crossed! Most importantly I am going to listen to my body, if I need more rest and recovery I will take it! I certainly can't run my half at all if I am injured and I want to get to my half!!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Never say never!

As I was out this past weekend on my nine mile run (Yes you heard that right!! 9 MILES!!!) I realized that I have said 'I am not one of those crazy runner girls who runs long distances" "I do not have any desire to run half marathons" "I am just a 3 mile kind of girl". Well here I am eating my words!

I still can not believe I have made it to 9 miles! I do think I will have to sign up for another half though to stick with it. It seems like for me I need to have something scheduled to work towards. I am certain that if this race weren't coming up I would have stayed home Sunday morning, I was simply not feeling it. (I did, by the way fuel and hydrate properly this run!)

I has been interesting to me to see my progress on these long run days since begging my training program:

At 4 miles I ran 9:43 minute miles

On my 5 mile run I ran close at 9:59 minute miles

At 6 miles I was much slower at 10:26 minute miles

It is important to note that I had not yet taken any fuel with me on my runs at this point. I realized at the 6 mile run that I better develop a plan and carried some chews with me for my 7 miler.

At 7 miles I was back up at 9:54 minute miles

At 8 miles (I forgot my chews) I ran 10:23 minute miles

On my run this past weekend I ran 9 miles and ran 9:48 minute miles. 

If this were a science experiment I would say that my conclusion is that I need fuel at 45 minutes into my runs! I am actually amazed to see it laid out like this! I knew at 8 miles that I needed fuel but to see this be the case even back on my 6 mile run makes for a compelling case!

I am currently training with Gatorade Chews and I love them and this past week I also carried a hydration pack! More on that to come ;)

I am happy that I have stepped out of my comfort zone, that I have set this goal and that I am making it happen! One mile at a time!

Monday, March 16, 2015

This weekend's VIP - Garmin Forerunner 10 Review

I have been running along, minding my own business, perfectly happy with my Runtastic Running App (which by the way is still my very favorite app)! Until my seven mile run...

First let me say I have a super old phone with less than optimal battery life. I listen to my music and use the app while I run and on occasion I also feel compelled to snap a pic of something fantastic I spot along my run like my cardinals!

So on my seven mile run a couple of weeks ago my battery completely died the moment I hit finished on my Runtastic! Crap! It was fine, my data was saved but I knew that the longer I run the more of a problem I will have! I started thinking I could put my music on the iPod shuffle and carry both. One problem with this... I'd need headphones for my shuffle and headphones for my phone/running app??!! That makes no sense! I have researched watches for so long but couldn't quite figure out which one I wanted.

I recently snagged a Garmin Forerunner 10 and it is the BOMB!!! I love this watch and am so happy I now have one! I love it not only because it will record my runs and keep my results but I absolutely love being able to look down and see my pace! In the past I would do the awkward mid run sideways look at my arm with out falling down thing! Now I just lift my wrist up! IT IS AWESOME!! I can't believe I have ran for two years without a Garmin!

The Garmin Forerunner 10 tracks my distance, pace and calories which is all that I need! It is easy to use and is super light weight!

This watch was love at first run!!!

Friday, March 13, 2015

High Five for Friday

Happy Friday! hope you've all had a great week. our week has been great! Much better than the last week for me personally although the time change has taken it's toll on my family. Wednesday night I think I was the only person not in bed by 7:30 pm. Ha! Here's a look back at some highlights from this week:

1. I made to to 8 miles!

2. Madie whipped up a batch of scratch made butter popcorn flavored cupcakes with movie theater butter cream icing and popcorn "sprinkles" on top! YUMMY!!!! It is hard to not splurge when Betty Crocker lives with you! (This one is technically from late last week but still, had to share, they are the bomb!)

3. This Puppy!!

4. We have had really great temperatures this week!

5. It's going to be another beautiful week next week!!

Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

I have made 100!!!

With my long run on Sunday I made it to 100 miles already for this year!! Not too shabby!!

The year started off pretty busy, last year was both a very wonderful year with our wedding and all the pre-wedding events and a very difficult year with the loss of my loved ones.  

I have realized, looking back over 2014, that as life happened last year I did not meet my goal of 508 miles in 2014 (what a weird number to set as my goal anyway...), I ran 261 miles instead. 

I have thought a lot about my personal running goals for 2015 and rather than assign a number I am just going to run. 

I am going to run to find hope.
I am going to run to find peace.
I am going to run to enjoy the moments.
I am going to run to eliminate worry.
I am going to run to remember. 

I am just going to run.

I will let the number be a surprise!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Running in winter, I mean spring... In the morning, I mean the afternoon...

Ok so no shocker here.... I have learned yet another lesson!

For my Sunday long run this past weekend I was planning to run in the morning. I wanted to sleep in until about 7:30 am then have a cup a coffee and hit the greenway! We ended up getting up around 8, having a cup of coffee and then we decided instead to head out first on the four wheeler for a bit. We were out until around 11:30. We got in and I changed to go out for my run but I realized I hadn't yet eaten anything... I knew if I ate then my stomach would be upset on my run and I knew if I didn't eat my stomach might get upset on my run.... I decided to eat some Gatorade Prime Energy Chews. I also took a pack of chews along to fuel my self on my run. I finally started out on my run around 12:45 pm. I have found it's best for me to pop some chews on my run at 45 minutes in. I realized half way in to my run (four miles away from my car) that I left those chews in my car!!!!! Mistake number 1: I did not properly fuel or hydrate for my run!

Since I was up at 8 I was dressed for the then 35-40 degree weather. By the time I made it to the greenway it was 68 degrees!!! Mistake number 2: I did not properly dress!

My lessons learned:

First of all I will make sure to check the weather immediately before I head out! I was entirely too hot! This time of the year in North Carolina the weather is so unpredictable. It's gone from the freezing cold of winter to the perfect conditions of spring in no time and I am certain it will be freezing again soon!

I do think I made the right choice in choosing the Gatorade Prime Energy Chews for my pre-run fuel rather than a big meal right before my run but I should have also had some water throughout the morning. If I would have had my morning planned out better I probably could have eaten breakfast before heading out on the four wheeler, by the time I got out on my run it was lunch time. Most importantly I will not go out on another long run with out my chews or some sort of fuel and a hydration pack!

Life is all about learning right!? I am told all the time, running on a empty stomach is like operating a vehicle on an empty tank of gas! Got it now! Understood! Next time I will be better prepared and properly fueled! 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

8 Miles!!! Training week 5 complete!

I am happy to report that I ran eight miles on Sunday!! What a journey so far!

I had a tough week last week! The week of February 22nd I was following my training plan to the T and on February 28th I ran seven miles! It was the best run I think I have ever had! Then last week I experienced a major road block! I can't quite figure out yet what that road block was. Last Tuesday, following my seven mile run on Sunday, I was supposed to run three miles. I had to run evenings due to my work schedule last week, I got to the track and barely made it one mile! It felt as though I had never run before! My legs were sore, I couldn't control my breathing and I knew I was not going to make it. I finished one mile and I walked one more mile and then I threw in the towel and quit! I was so mad at myself! I could not understand how two days before I was able to run seven miles non stop and this day I couldn't even get out one! Wednesday I was supposed to run 4 miles... I didn't. Thursday I was supposed to run three... I didn't. Friday was a rest day... No problem there, I had made a rest day out of the entire week!

Saturday's are typically my long days but I had plans this past Saturday mid morning through the rest of the day and early morning was too cold so I moved my long run to Sunday! It was harder than the last long run but I still knocked it out! 8 miles!!

running plan

I am so proud of myself for getting back out there after such a lousy week of making excuses!

I have completed week 5 of my training plan! I will skip week six and move straight into week seven!

Eight Miles CHECK!! Here's to hoping for a better week this week!
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