Tuesday, August 28, 2012

HH5k and Rotary 5k Race Recaps!

I am SUPER behind on these... what can I say, will make these as quick and painless as possible!

August 11 I ran the Huntertown Heritage Days Charger 5k - this race is typically a part of a local festival but this year there was an error in planning and it ended up being the weekend after the festival.  The 5k is run as a fundraiser for a local high school's track team.  Its a simple course through town - a loop that incorporates both pavement and gravel.  The race was well organized and everyone was very friendly.

I won't bore you with too many details, suffice it to say I did really well until I hit the gravel.  I am NOT used to it and I just didn't feel like I could get a good grip and keep my feet under me.  I still did fairly well, don't get me wrong - but I wasn't able to PR like I had hoped.  I managed to finish with a time of 24:06 and came in 2nd in my age group.

Just starting off

After the 5k, they had a kids fun mile run, and while it wasn't super organized I was super impressed with the kindness of the track team kids there.  The kids had to run 5 loops to total a mile and my daughter just wasn't having a good day but every loop they cheered for the kids and even though she was a full lap behind everyone they stayed there and cheered her on the whole time - SUPER thankful for them, they made her day.  We would definitely do this race in the future, there aren't alot of perks, but everyone was friendly and its pretty inexpensive so to me that makes it a winner!

All those teens in the background (plus more) had been lined up to cheer for the kids!
Then, August 18 I ran the Anthony Wayne Rotary 5k at Shoaff Park.  This race benefits the Rotary as they work to eradicate polio.  The course is simple, two loops around the golf course.  Each loop includes a short, semi-steep uphill at the start and a nice slight downhill to end.  Again, I won't bore you with a bunch of race details but suffice it to say I ran this entire race at a hard pace.  I felt like I was dying, I had a target in mind ahead of me and I just couldn't keep up so I pushed and pushed as hard as I could.  I refused to give up even when it got hard.  At the end of one lap I was able to snag some water (thank goodness, I needed it).  That second uphill slowed me down more than I would have liked but I just kept pushing the best that I could.  
During the whole race I was doing math in my head... I had hopes of getting a PR, so with each mile split I was trying to see if it was still within reach.  Needless to say, I am no good at math while running so I had no clue, so I just ran as fast as my lungs would let me. (I say lungs, because my legs were fine!) As I neared the finish line I was elated to see that I could indeed PR so I pushed as hard as I could to cross that finish line - I ended up finishing in 23:29.7 - a 14 second PR!  I was so happy that I PRed that I couldn't be disappointed in taking 3rd place in my age group instead of 2nd.   It was a good day, and I am happy that I finally PRed the 5k this year - now its time to focus on marathon training! 

So fast my skin can't keep up! hah
Almost done!
3rd in my age group

These kids are EVERYTHING to me

Monday, August 27, 2012

Marathon Monday: Week 4 Recap

I don't have alot to say about training this week, I guess I probably shouldn't even be doing these whole marathon Monday things, but its a great way for me to easily glance back at my training and see how things are going.  Week 4 is complete, now onto week 5!

Tuesday: 3.51 miles w/Daniel in the BOB
Wednesday: 3 miles w/Daniel in the BOB + 1 mile with Natalie (in 11:25 - shes getting speedy!)
Thursday: 3.65miles - tempo run
Saturday: 10 miles
    Total for the week: 21.16 miles

Buckets of Sweat!
Long Run Summary:
Nothing exceptional to tell here.  Got up super early to beat the heat and I loved running before the sun was up.  I knew within a mile I was in trouble with my stomach - I managed to make it 6.5 miles before having to stop for a pit stop and thankfully 10 was all I had on the schedule because I had to dash for the potty again!  Note to self:  broccoli should not be eaten the day before a long run!   I finished in 1:35:21 for an average pace of 9:32 which is quite a bit slower than most of my recent runs, but I am happy with it none the less.  Onward and upward, right?

On a side note:  My weight held steady for the most part this week despite my best efforts to shave a few more pounds off.  Within 8 pounds of 175!!  Then, I will probably set a new goal of 155 or 160... if I ever get to 175 :)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Some things you can't outrun

today, its feelings of self doubt and disappointment.

No matter how hard I have worked to get to where I am, I can't feel good in my own body because I am weighed down by the damage the excess weight caused to my body.  The only solution is one that would put my life in danger and set me back $20,000 that I need to take care of my family.  It is disheartening and frustrating.

I'll be okay, but for today... I am going to feel sorry for myself and cry about it just a little.

We all have weeks like that right?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Marathon Monday - the Cliff Notes

Week three of marathon training is in the books.  It was a hectic week.  My daughter started kindergarten on Wednesday so we are still adjusting to that new schedule.  I still need to recap my last two weekends' races, but that will have to wait.

I had to shuffle the schedule around a bit due to a race on Saturday, so I ran 9 miles on Wednesday before I sent my daughter to school (let me just say, it was a great stress relief!).   I managed to get all my miles in, but my run Tuesday was supposed to be a hill workout but I skipped it.  My week looked something like this

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: 3.3 miles
Wednesday: 9.02 miles
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 3.1 miles
Sunday: 3.11 miles

Quick summary of the long run... it was great.  I was able to run the full 9 miles without stopping which is huge for me.  No tummy troubles and just a few twinges of pain... it was glorious - cool, sunny, and beautiful out.

Sorry that I have been absent, its been a real struggle getting used to my daughter being in school.  I hope to get my race recaps done this week, so keep your eyes peeled for those.

Hope you all had a pleasant weekend! :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Marathon Tuesday?

I meant to sit down and do this post yesterday but I couldn't find the motivation to sit down and get it written.  Until my marathon I will be trying to post every Monday with how my training is going.   I just started week 3 of my training.  I am doing a very basic plan, just hoping to get to the finish line - I have no time goal.  I refuse to set myself up for disappointment like I did with my first half.

Week 1:
Tuesday: 3 miles (speed work, 6x400)
Wednesday: 3 Miles
Thursday: 3.5 miles
Saturday: 7 miles
     Total: 16.5 miles

Week 1 was a struggle getting the runs in because I was in Alabama and sick, but I rearranged the schedule and got the miles in.   My long run was actually split up into several shorter runs with a few 10 minute breaks built in because it was the best I could do with being sick. 

Week 2:
Tuesday: 3 miles
Wednesday: 3.5 miles plus 1.65 mi with daughter
Thursday: 4 miles
Saturday: 3.1 miles (Race) plus 1 mi with daughter
Sunday: 8 miles
     Total: 24.35 (21.7 without the runs w/daughter)

Week 2 the plan was to do my long run on Thursday because my husband was working from home, but I just couldn't pull myself out of bed early enough.  I still wanted to run because it was the perfect opportunity with him being home, so I strapped my son in the BOB and ran because I could.  I ended up running 4 miles and probably would have just finished the other 4 - but I was out of time. (The kids had dentist appointments)  I probably ran too many miles in week 2, gotta be mindful of rest days - its too early in training to over do it.

Sunday came and I put off the run as long as I could by watching the men's marathon.  I didn't want to run because I was achy and sluggish from the 5k the day before but once I stepped out the door, things started looking up almost immediately.  The weather was cool, the sun was out, and I was going to kick butt.  My plan was to run at least half the miles before stopping back at home for a bathroom pit-stop.   However, once I got started I settled into a good rhythmn and just didn't want to stop - so I ran, 8 miles without stopping.  This is my longest distance non-stop run in a LONG time - since at least March or April.  It was a reassurance that I can do anything I set my mind to, which I needed.  My splits were all over the place, but at least I had negative-splits the last few miles.

The challenge this week comes in having to run a 9 miler during the middle of the week due to a race this weekend.  It would be ideal to train without all the local 5k races, but I am trying to do as many of the local track club races as possible.  Next year when I train for the Goofy Challenge I won't have all these extra races to contend with.

Question for my readers... how do I deal with the miles I am putting in with my daughter?  They are at a much slower pace (probably 16-18 minute miles depending on the day), but I am running 2-3 miles a week with her on her runs.  
Do I count those miles?  Do I need to reduce my independent mileage by that much or do I just count it as a sort of cross training? 

Friday, August 10, 2012

Fundraising Giveaway!

I am doing very well with my fundraising efforts.  I am so excited to be within reach of my goal of raising $2,620 for St Jude Children's Research Hospital!  That being said, I am still about $500 short!

I debated doing a virtual run to raise money but I decided to do a bit more straight forward giveaway!  Every $5 you donate will get you an entry into the giveaway - at $25 you get an extra entry and at $50 you get 5 extra entries. That means,

$5 = 1 entry
$25 = 6 entries
$50 = 15 entries

And, for those of you who have twitter, facebook, and a blog you can earn an additional entry for sharing the link to this contest there (one per type, please leave a comment for each extra entry).

Now, onto the prizes!

Prize pack 1: Moulin Rouge DVD and cookies from a local bakery

Prize pack 2: 2 x Sports Beans (Fruit Punch), Nuun (Berry), and 2 x Peanut Butter Gu

Prize pack 3: Trial size KT tape, grape Nuun sample, lemon-lime Nuun sample, sports beans (fruit punch), clif shot bloks (cran-berry), Peanut Butter Gu, Chocolate Honey Stinger, and a Bondi Band (your choice from what I have in stock)

Prize pack 4: Bondi Band (your choice from what I have in stock), Pearl Izumi Socks size Medium (sizes 7-9), 2 x Sports Beans (Fruit Punch)

Prize pack 5: Bondi Band (your choice from what I have in stock) and a $42 e-gift certificate to www.runningskirts.com

Donations can be made to my heroes page here.  

I plan to leave this fundraising giveaway open until September 10, however if I reach my goal first I will draw winners sooner!  

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Counting my Blessings

I am the first to admit that I don't always take the time to count my blessings.  A part of my personality is to stress over the things that don't go my way and it often means I overlook the things that are going well in my life.  Today, during a rough run it all sort of hit home for me so I decided I needed to make time for a blog post.  I needed to make time to appreciate some of my blessings.

I feel like the luckiest girl in the world when it comes to my family.  I am very close with my mom and consider her one of my best friends.  It is always a blessing for me when I get to go visit her, my dad, and my sister.  They live over 9 hours drive away, so our visits aren't as frequent as I would like but honestly I couldn't ask for a better more supportive family.  They are always there for me and lift me up when I am doubting myself and my abilities.

Then of course, there are my husband and my kids.  They are there for me at every race, they are my cheerleaders and my race photographers.  They are tolerant of me being lazy after a long run and do whatever they can to help me.  Running is not a cheap sport, especially when you are running races.  My husband is amazing and has always supported my running endeavors.  If there is a race I want to do, he does everything in his power to make sure I can do it.  My daughter is 5 and has started to really show a love for the sport, I am not sure if its just to be like Mommy or because she loves it, but we are going to nurture it as long as we can.  She is currently running mileage for a kids marathon that she will be completing in September.  The only way it could get any better would be if my husband would take up running too... although, then what would we do about race babysitting? :)

When I started my journey I was terribly out of shape, I couldn't play with my kids, and had high blood pressure.  I feel so blessed to have found a healthy lifestyle, its made all the difference in the world for me. I have lost around 120ish pounds and found a new appreciation for physical activity and healthy eating.  90% of the time I am very proud of myself for my diet and exercise routine.  I no longer have high blood pressure and I am able to do things I never dreamed possible.  I am grateful that despite a few bumps along the road I have been able to pretty much maintain my weight loss for over a year now.  I would love to lose a few more pounds, but at the end of the day I am trying to just count my blessings.  I never thought I would see "one"derland again....

This is a blessing that I never thought I could "count."  I always have high hopes and big plans, I work hard to  make them come true but eventually it tends to fade away.  That's not to say I am a quitter, because I never have been.  But, nothing has ever meant as much to me as this journey does.  There have been several times I have slipped up along this journey.  Gaining back 10-15 pounds, eating crappy food, slacking on my work outs.  Yet, I never let myself slip too far.  There are days that I don't want to work out, when I want to eat the comfort foods my 300 pound self had grown to love.  And honestly, I let myself have those days.  Without them, I don't think I would be where I am today.  It means more to me to live life than to meet a certain number on the scale.  If a two week vacation with family means I gain 5-10 pounds, SO WHAT... I can lose it pretty easily.  At the end of they day, I am more determined than ever to be a happy healthy Mom to my kids and that makes all the difference in the world.  I may stumble, but I refuse to fall!

I don't have many "local" friends.  I have recently started to struggle with self-confidence issues and when in social situations I always worry that people are talking about me or wish I wasn't there (working on it, I promise) - so I honestly avoid many social situations right now.  However, I could not be where I am today without the support of my many friends, most of them are "virtual" friends that I have never met, a few are local, and several are friends from my college years.  They may not have any clue how much their support means to me, but without them I would be nothing.  So, to those who have supported me along the way - I owe it all to you, so THANK YOU!

Of course, there are many more blessings in my life, but these are the four that hit home tonight so that's it for now.  I hope to do a blog post soon with my a fundraising giveaway! 

What are you grateful for today?