Monday, November 14, 2011
I'm still sore. I'm quite tired. Scale isn't being very forgiving either. 303.6 this morning, so moving back in the right direction again, but slow as crap.
This morning I came to work and told a co-worker that I ran my 5 mile run this Saturday. This coworker used to run all the time. He completed the 15 miler here in Charleston just 2 years ago (I think). I always think of him as this wonderfully fit and athletic runner, but recently he hasn't really been able to run much. (This morning he told me that his docs told him no more than 2-3 miles.) The first thing out of my coworker's mouth? "Don't do that!" Yep. *sigh* He followed it up with many, many congrats, probably because he realized that he was discouraging me with his previous comment. I wish could explain how it made me feel though. *sigh*
How, then, could I share with him that I'm thinking of training for a half marathon? In fact, I'm doing more than thinking. Last night I sat down with my phone and scheduled all my workouts between today and May 5th, the day of the half. I went backwards from the event and put down a 12-week Hal Higdon program in my phone, and then subbed my own system in before that, and, of course, made a few minor adjustments to the Higdon training schedule. My coworker, though, is just one more reason why I'm keeping this whole thing secret. I know, you out there in Sparkland know, my hubs knows, and one other friend (who I'd be running it with) knows. That's it. And that's how it will stay.
Because I can't take one more look of doubt.
I can't take the stares, the worries. I know it's out of concern for my health and safety, but I cannot take one more person telling me that I SHOULDN'T want this, I shouldn't try.
I'm consulting with my doctors. Three, as a matter of fact.
I have met with my regular physician, who knew me at 400+ pounds and has watched me shrink since then. The same physician that gave me a refillable prescription for 800mg tablets of Ibuprofen when I told her at 380+ pounds that I was trying to run (this was back in 2008, before I finally gave up and started gaining...again). Not once has this doctor told me not to run. She said to listen to my body and take it slow and then encouraged me to do what I love.
I met with a physical therapist when I was trying to solve the hip/back problems. When I told him I was running, he simply wrote it down in my chart and moved on like I'd told him I ate a banana for breakfast. Not one single word of don't. Not one single look of doubt.
Plus, I have regular visits now with my chiropractor...the same chiropractor who saw my hips misaligned so much that he told me it had even amazed him that I could last through an entire 45 minute Zumba class. I told him I was running and do you know what he said? Not a damn thing. Well, actually, he mistook me for a former athlete. He actually made some comments that made me realize that this man thought I was a former high school track or cross country athlete, had let myself go after graduation and after having kids, and was trying to get back into the game. What else has he told me? Take it easy. Take it slow. Listen to your body. If it hurts, stop, stretch and rest, then try again. What didn't he say? - Stop or Don't or You Can't. Not once. Not ever. I keep him up to date on my mileage and how I handle any discomfort and pain during runs. (I told him that I judge the discomfort on a scale of 1-10. If it's 4 and under, no worries, keep running...once it starts to get over 5, though, I have to seriously consider stopping and if I get over 6 or 7, I MUST stop. He told me he was going to steal that and share it with his other clients.) I also told him that I feel less pain when I'm running than when I'm simply standing or sometimes even walking. In fact, this man told me NOT to stop doing what I'm doing. He told me to keep it up so that WE can work around treatments for the problem, instead of treating the problem by stopping any and all physical activity and risk me losing my mind and my momentum.
Three doctors. Not one said stop. The most I got was "listen to your body," which I do more than ever before.
I can't take the doubters.
I can't take the looks of concern.
I appreciate it, I really do, but they don't understand.
They see me and think, "A person of HER size and build must be doing SERIOUS damage to her body by pounding the pavement with that much weight."
And when I see that face, it makes me doubt it too.
Is running easy for me? Hell no!
Saturday's first mile was the first time that a mile didn't make me want to just stop and walk back home. But most of that isn't because of pain or discomfort or my body being ready. It's the doubt. The doubt tells me that it's too hard and that I shouldn't be doing this and that I'm ruining myself.
I know very few people, though, who will tell you that running is "easy." "It doesn't get easier...you just get better." If it was...wouldn't everyone be doing it?
Yes, I understand that some people experience mobility issues when they train too hard and spend their lives pounding themselves running. But I never ran before. Certainly I can get a few good years out of my body. And when it tells me to stop. When it tells me that it's going to do more harm than good. I will stop. Until then, could people just PLEASE keep their BS to themselves?!
Last night, when we were going to bed, Hubs pulled me in close, kissed me on the head and said, "I'm really proud of you." "For what?" I said. "For doing so great at work, and for doing so great at running." I then admitted to him that part of me is terrified. Terrified because something (and everyone) tells me I shouldn't do this, I shouldn't want it, I shouldn't even try. And terrified because I was taught at a young age that things can't stay good for very long. Yes, I was raised with a man who would beat the happiness out of you, so you tried not to expect to be too happy, because it just meant the beating (either literally, from his hand, or figuratively, from life) was just around the corner. I was taught to always be on guard. To "just wait for the shoe to drop." Wait for it to all fall apart. Because nobody, but especially me, deserved to be too happy for too long. That wasn't my life, it wasn't my fate.
"That was a long time ago," Hubs told me.
And he's right. But I'm still terrified. Not only about somehow failing and not achieving my goal, but afraid of achieving it and it not being enough for the people around me. I'm terrified that I'll work so hard, finish the race, and they'll be standing there going, "Wow! Great job, but you need to stop. You just aren't built for running and you're going to ruin your life."
If there's anything I've learned along the way, though, it's that fear of success or failure is one of the DUMBEST reasons to not try. "Shoot for the moon. Even if you fail, you'll land among the stars." has been a favorite saying of mine since about the age of 8. And I believe that. I believe in aiming high. I have a little plaque in my office that reminds me every day to "Dream Big!" Because even if you don't get everything that you want, at least you're trying. You may not accomplish every crazy and amazing thing you set out to do, but just think of all the things you'll accomplish on your way to trying for the big things? This weekend - I ran 5 miles. It's a stepping stone for the half for me, but just think, even if, for whatever reason, I don't make it to the half distance by May 5th, I'll still be able to say I ran 5 miles. THAT is why I dream big.
So haters gonna hate, right? (I hate that phrase...)
People can doubt me. They can look right through me if they want. They can count me out. Whatever. Just sit back, watch, and enjoy. I can take all that, because I have this incredible fighting spirit to prove people's low expectations or bad expectations of me wrong (something I didn't know I had until I started this journey).
What I can't take yet, is the constant influx of everyone up in my business, telling me to stop, don't, can't. Because sometimes the voice that says those things in my head is loud enough. Sometimes the music isn't loud enough to drown it out. And I don't need that voice turning into a chorus. Not right now. I'd rather just see the jaws drop when I'm done, the concern melt into, "Well, what's done is done..and she's still alive and walking..."
A long time ago I told myself not to tell people what I was planning because, "I don't want to say I'm going to do things unless I KNOW I'm going to do them." And that worked for a while. I was able to secretly dream and achieve. And then that turned into, "WTF does it matter to them? Who needs to know but me and my family and the people who may be involved in the process or outcome?"
I'm going to keep going. I'm going to keep trying. But I'm not telling another soul. Why do they need to know? Sometimes SP is a lifesaver for this journey because of this very reason. Because I know I'm among people who understand the uphill battle, overcoming the odds, and fighting expectations. I'd rather those voices in my head during my 2 "easy" miles tonight over the one I heard earlier.
Doubters gonna doubt...I'm gonna run.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Weight Last Week: 304.0
Weight Goal for This Week: 302.0
Actual Weight This Week: 304.0
Weight Loss/Gain: Big Fat ZERO
I saw this coming. I really did. Yesterday morning I weighed in at 302.8. All evening my scale was giving me 298 readings...even after eating...even late at night. But this morning? Yep. 304.0. *sigh*
I know this is water weight and such. I'm sore today. My right calf is half-cramped. My right hip still sorta hurts. This isn't rocket science. My body is sore and rebuilding. That requires extra stores of water. It requires the dumping of certain toxins I may have released yesterday in a 5 mile run. So, yeah...I saw this coming. Doesn't make it any easier, but...a week of stress + two hard days of working out (especially that 5 miler yesterday) = a no-loss week.
My hope, of course, is that I drop those extra couple pounds tomorrow or the next day and then drop one or two more throughout the week while I get back to my regularly scheduled workouts. I'm sticking to my 11/20 goal of 300.0, and I'll fight for that all week. I want that 298 back and I want it to STICK!
That being said...the real question is - How do I feel after my run yesterday? Not too bad. Sore, yes. I needed sleep like WOAH! yesterday. I may have pushed a TINY bit too hard. But I don't see yesterday as a mistake. I'm not wanting to back off. I don't think I need time off to recover. I already get today off and I have high hopes that by Monday I'll be able to do my easy 2 mile run without too much trouble. Even my hip is healing itself (my worst fear is that I'd have to make an emergency run to the chiro for an adjustment because I messed things up...but I think it's adjusted itself through oodles of stretching yesterday).
So, this week counts on paper as a ZERO week. But...
...I didn't gain weight this week!
...I fought hard to reach a serious distance goal - and WON!
...and now I know a little more what I can do.
Onward to the next week...
So, how do I hit 300 next week? How do I set myself up for the best possibility of success?
1. I keep working out.
Sunday - LOTS of stretching! It's repair time, so I need to get myself back into tip-top shape.
Monday - 2 mile easy run
Tuesday - Circuit training 30min session
Wednesday - Speedwork (at least 7 intervals of 5.3)
Thursday - Rest day - more stretching!
Friday - Circuit training of 30-45min
Saturday - 4.25 miles
I went back and read the instructions for the blast through, then back up, method of training. Basically it says increase one week, then do half of that increase the next week, before increasing again. So, we're going to try that out. My longest run before yesterday was 3.5. I ran 5.0 yesterday. I should've only increased a mile to that, but ah-well. I increased 1.5 miles. So half of that is .75 miles. 3.5 + .75 = 4.25 miles. So that's the goal for next Saturday. Then, the next week, we'll see about increasing to 5.5 or 6 miles.
Like I said, we shall see. I refuse to rush myself, to rush my body. I used to treat this body like crap. When I started working out when I started SP, though, I made a concentrated effort not to push too hard. Pushing it a little is great...pushing it past it's acceptable limits leads to injury and time off that I can ill afford being so close to my goals and with a HM goal looming.
My running schedule, instead, may look something like this:
11/19 - 4.25 miles
11/26 - 5 miles
12/3 - 5.5 miles
12/10 - 5k
12/17 - 6 miles
12/24 - 5.75 miles
12/31 - 6.5 miles
1/8 - 8k
1/14 - 6.5 miles
1/21 - 6.25 miles
1/28 - 7 miles
In my head, that sounds about right.
(Side note: I'm seriously hoping that my speedwork will get me closer to my goal of an 11-12 minute mile average pace. Yesterday I managed a 14.5 min/mile pace on one of my toughest runs ever...so I'm hopeful that eventually that will go down, especially considering I used to average around a 15.5 - 16 min/mile pace.)
2. I need to stick to my calorie goals.
I had some crazy eating days this week. There's no denying that. And there's no denying that, had I eaten right, I might have seen just a small loss this week even with all the bloat weight. I need to stay around 1800-2000 calories. My body does need a little more than the 1600 calorie diet I used to follow to lose weight now that I need fuel for my run.
3. I need to balance my meals a little better.
I need more fruits and veggies. I need my carbs, yes, but I need to stick to my high protein diet. I need to focus on getting healthy fuel for my body both for runs and for repair reasons. I cannot WAIT to make a big batch of Kale Tofu Stir Fry later today so I have that for the week. It's healthy, filling and yummy. I can eat a bunch calorie-wise, but it's so filling that overeating it is nearly impossible.
BTW - here's the recipe
I need to watch what I eat at the banquet today. Just because it's there doesn't mean I need it in my body. I'll allow myself one sweet thing, for sure, but I need to fill my plate with a bunch of veggies, leaving very little room for anything else. This has worked for me in the past at food-centered events. Fill the plate with veggies and you don't have to walk out of there feeling like a gluttonous pig. Sure, maybe you ate a little too much, but the calorie punch is not quite as high when you filled up with healthy veg options.
4. I need to drink my water!
I promise you this is going to get more and more difficult as the weather cools. Summer time is easy because cold water makes my body feel great and cool...but when the weather is cold, my body resists because cold water just makes me feel even more cold. Still, it's necessary. My body needs it. Plus, it keeps me full, which keeps me from overeating as much. (Hubs called me, "Water girl" the other day and I just smiled. I used to rarely drink water...now I can't live without it!)
5. I need to plan out my meals.
I'm challenging myself to eat at home every single day this week, and to pack a healthy lunch every single day this week too. NO EATING OUT FOR 6 DAYS (because of the banquet today, I'm not counting today). I can do that. I CAN do that. Just 6 days. All yummy foods cooked by me. When all else fails, make a sandwich at home and zap a bag of steamfresh veggies to go with it. I even have Gorton's grilled fish in the freezer I can zap. Convenience foods are fine, but eating out is NOT ...just for one week.
This will also mean that I have to make sure I have everything I need here at the house and have some meals planned that are healthy and delicious so there's no confusion as to what we have and what I can make. I'll probably grab a turkey or two for the house since the deals on that this week will likely be great. (Gotta know when to grab certain deals - around Thanksgiving time - you grab a couple turkeys! *lol*) I may also look into the ham prices, though I never seem to find too good a deals on that. (I *love* ham. Turkey? Not so much...but ham?! YUM!) We'll see what else is on sale but, worse comes to worse, tofu is always a cheap option. I grab a few packages of the extra-firm blocks and I figure out how to put them into a great meal. I just found a great recipe for baked tofu and another for fried tofu like I get at the Japanese restaurants and have been trying desperately to mimic here at home. So if all else fails - tofu city up in here!
So, that's the plan, Stan. BTW - did you know there's like 49 days until 2012? I don't know about you, but I want to go out with a resounding BANG! of pride and happiness in this year, in the lessons I learned, in what I achieved. I can already add 5 miles running to my "pride" list, but I want to add "under 300" as well, so I've still got some work to do.
Run - Circuit - Run, repeat
Eat healthy - drink water, repeat
Saturday, November 12, 2011
I just finished my run...and my ice bath because OH-EM-GEE! *lol* I'll be able to gauge more the "should I have done it?" factor once I see how my body feels the rest of the day. If it's spent the rest of the day, I worked too hard. If, however, I bounce right back and feel tired, yes, but sluggish and exhausted, no, then it was mostly mental problems I faced out there on the road.
I wasn't as sure this morning as I was last morning that this would be my 5 Mile Victory Day. For the first...okay, for every single mile, I spent the entire time just fighting for the next 1/4 mile. Even the first 1/4 mile (though mile one was my favorite this time... *lol*). "Just get 1/4 of a mile and go from there." "Good job!" "Now 1/4 of a mile more and we'll talk again."
I'll be honest, though.
Mile 1 - Was great. I felt amazing. I was loving the run.
Mile 2 - Started out fine, and then got tough, and tougher. I thought I needed to stop to puke at one point, but I wasn't sure why because I wasn't really pushing beyond my limit. Hell, I ran 2 miles Monday with my boy! Wasn't until I hit about mile 2.5 that I realized how fast I'd been going those first 2 miles. I usually average a 14.5 min/mile pace throughout my LDRs, but the first two miles I was in the low 14min/mile to high 13 min/mile pace.
Mile 3 - I slowed down a bit. Not because I wanted to, but because I was starting to get tired. I wasn't sure if it was mental or physical though. I begged myself through my 5k though (and got a PR time according to my phone - 45:16) and then I begged my way to the 3.5 point, the longest I'd ever run before and I knew my body COULD do it, so I wanted to do it again.
Mile 4 - I honestly did most of this mindlessly. I was starting to feel super tired and super sore. I kept pushing through each 1/4 of a mile. I kept telling myself that I was just a mile away from my goal. But when I hit the last 3/4 of a mile to my goal, I started begging, praying, just asking for help, begging my body to give it to me, just this once, because I was so close, because I needed to know that I could. I told it could go as SLOW as it wanted as long as it did not stop running for me. I told it I would let it puke later. I nearly died in that last 3/4 of a mile...or at least that's how I felt at the time.
And then, because my world loves to be ironic and difficult - the last 5 hundreds of my goal, when I was most tired and most wanted to power through? UPHILL. One of the worst on the run. One I'd already beaten in mile 1 with no problem. I guarantee it probably looked to anyone else like I was walking up that hill, but it felt like running...and I got just a TEENY bit of a downhill before my phone congratulated me for reaching my goal.
Total Distance: 5.0 miles
(I walked VERY slowly the last 2/10ths of a mile home)
Total Time: 1 hr 13 min 19 sec
Average Pace: 14'39"/mi
Calories Burned: 946
This is all according to the Nike + GPS app, which has been my judge of distance, time, and pace and all that for pretty much the entire time training.
I came home. Nearly puked. Nearly peed my pants (hey, that was a long run, and no potty breaks!). Stretched. Took an ice bath. And now I'm just waiting to see what my body tells me.
Too much? Too hard? Too soon?
Because, sometimes, and most times for me, I have to push past what I think is impossible. I have to achieve the impossible and then wait to analyze and see if it was just the mental part of my self-doubting mind that made it impossible for so long. Sometimes it hurts a lot to push past impossible...and then later, I feel okay, sometimes I even feel fine and I realize that I made up the pain. (I'm a bit of a hypochondriac and, yes, I have been known to mentally suggest symptoms to my body that it then manifests as if real.) The only real judge is time. Time will tell if this was a good idea or not. Time will tell if I go out next Saturday trying for 5 miles again, tapering back, or trying to increase (not bloody likely!).
But, if at least for today...I am a girl that can run 5 miles (and...I ran my way to 298 *snort*). (It won't last, it's dehydration and all that, but it is funny to think that I hit 2 goals at once, and one helped the other and vice versa - because I kept thinking on my run when it got hard "298, 298, 298!")
It was difficult. It hurt a bit. It was mentally one of the hardest things I've done to date. But...
(A pretty good article, by the way, which plays into this blog quite well. I like this bit: "Also you know that you’re taking steps towards your reaching your goals. This form of intrinsic motivation is what most people rely on. They can see their end goal in their head and they know how to get there. Each step along the way is one step closer to reaching that goal. It may be a long and arduous task, but you will never get there standing still. Eventually you will be able to look back and see that you’re closer to the end than you are to the beginning, which is a great feeling. Almost there." 13.1 miles? 5 miles is ALMOST halfway there, right? Okay, not quite...but I'm getting closer...)
Friday, November 11, 2011
So the presentation went really well. I engaged the crowd and got them participating and it felt amazing! I want to do it again...and again! *lol*
I was remarking to Hubs last night how much different it feels to be up in front of people now. I have a renewed confidence in myself. Yes, I know my job really well after being there 5 years and working in nearly every capacity available, but it's more than that. I didn't spend the entire time in front of them worried about what they would think of me, how they were judging me because of my weight. I was wearing my new size 24 dress pants (which are SO comfortable! I *love* them and they look great. Black with white pinstripes...). I wasn't worried about what they thought because, as I told Hubs, they just have no idea. Before, if they looked at me with eyes that read every "fat person" stereotype (eats too much, eats bad food, is lazy, doesn't take care of herself), I'd feel ashamed because a lot of that was true. Now if they look at me like that, I know it's not. I eat healthy food in the right amounts and I workout like crazy. I can run nearly 4 miles. I run 3 times a week and circuit train 2 times a week. I'm active and fit and healthy. I have an athlete's heart. So if they want to judge me with those stereotypes? Well, that's on them, not me. That kind of confidence breaks down a lot of the walls I felt before when speaking in front of other people. I feel comfortable in my own skin and, I think, that makes them feel more comfortable listening to me.
Of course, all that being said, I skipped my speedwork this week. Wednesday night it just wasn't feasible. I've spent most of this week going into work early, working my tail off, and then leaving late. I've been exhausted by the stress of it all. And Wednesday night it was necessary for me to go to the store for new shoes (my old flats had a hole in them and my heels make me slide because the caps have fallen off the heel) and new pants (because mine either fall off or make me look ginormous because, while they fit in the waist, they no longer fit in the hips). So that was my priority. That, and rest so I could be ready for the next day. I told myself I'd do it Thursday, once the presentation was over...but that didn't happen either.
Yesterday? Well, I had ZERO fuel in me. I ate my regular bagel breakfast before work with coffee. At around 11:30pm, I hurried to eat a Chex Mix bar. And then that was it for the rest of the day. No time before the presentation to grab anything and the co-worker I was with for the presentation really wanted to get back to work after the presentation and made it quite clear that I *could* stop for food, but that she didn't really want to. So I gave in, and we drove straight there, presented, and drove straight back. By the time I headed out of there (late, once again), I was famished. I got in contact with Hubs at home and he arranged for his Mom to watch the boys so he and I could go out to eat, celebrate my success and talk about how it went without the boys milling about. (Of course, what we ate made me terribly sick later, so...no yay there...but, that's what I felt I needed.)
Of course, that means I HAVE to clock in at the gym both today and tomorrow. I called the gym last night to make sure they weren't closing today for Veterans' Day, and they said they had no plans to be closed. I have to swipe my little card 2x a week, and I spent the beginning of the week working out at home with my boys and the middle of the week trying not to vomit from the stress of what I was about to do. So, yeah, I need to clock in these 2 days. Of course, whether or not I work out there tomorrow is up in the air. I will be going today to do my circuit training (and I've decided to up my time today to try to make up for the lost speedwork time - so I'll be doing a 45 minute session instead of 30 minutes) but tomorrow I've got my 2nd attempt at the 5-miler and I prefer to run outside rather than on the dreadmill or the incredibly ridiculously small indoor track at the gym. So it might be a case of "clock in and leave." I never feel guilty about this if I either have already worked out that day, or I plan to work out later that day. What's it matter WHERE the workout takes place, as long as it takes place, right?
As for my eating and my weight? It's been all over the place. I stress ate Wednesday night. Yesterday? Well, I went from basically nothing all day to a big dinner...never a very good idea for my metabolism, which loves it's schedule. I clocked in at 304.4 this morning, though, which gives me hope that I can knock off some stress/water weight in the next two days and, if I fight hard enough, maybe drag some pounds away with it. I still want my 302 desperately, but if I just manage to lose SOMETHING this week, I think I'll be pretty happy about that. I'm still ahead of schedule for my goal of 298.9 by December 31st, so I've got time between now and then to work things out. I had no clue I was going to be dragged into speaking in front of 130 people (okay, I'd say there were only about 60-80 there, but whatever), so I had no way to really plan around it. I did my best and am hoping to come out on top after all is said and done.
Yesterday evening I also spent a good majority of time chatting with one of my childhood best friends. *waves to her* I got her to join SP. ;) If anyone has been paying attention, this is the friend I was visiting the weekend before I decided I needed to hop back on the bandwagon, the weekend before I found SP and started this leg of the journey. Crazy girl decided to sign up to do a half marathon next May, and just started training to run the other night. I got the cutest text message giving me major props for the running thing because, as she said, "running is a whole other beast." Yep!
We talked for a long time. I told her I'd give her whatever help, advice, and support she needs...and then I told her I've been considering signing up for the same half (as long as no one else in that part of my world knows I'm doing it...). I've been itching for a race. I have yet to have a race environment to test my new running skills. I thought I'd have a turkey trot to do on Thanksgiving with the family, but because of certain medical and health issues with my mom and sister, running is not really an option for them right now. I get that. My sister walked with me in our 5k when she could've run the whole thing. Now that I'm the one who needs to back off? I'm ready and willing to do that. The Turkey Trot she has in mind is a 5k Walk on Thanksgiving morning, so I think we'll sign the whole family up and just walk the 3.1 miles together. A fun, no stress, easy 3.1 mile walk with the family is actually sounding pretty nice right now. Plus, it won't eat into my running schedule because I no longer have to think about tapering next week. Balls to the wall, baby!
So, in addition to the talk we had last night, I realized that I want to run a race before this year is out. RUN a RACE. It's on my list. I thought the Turkey Trot would be my answer, but now I need a different race to achieve that goal. So, I did some digging last night, and I found a set of "winter series" races that might meet my needs.
December 11th - 5k run in Charleston
January 8th (my bday!) - 8k run in Charleston on the same course, just extended
February 5th - a 10k run on the same course, extended again
All of that could lead me up to the HM race on May 5th with my friend, if I do it right, time everything properly.
I know there are a million training guides out there for people trying to get to a HM distance, but I don't know that I'm ready for that yet and I hesitate to follow anything like that, fail at it, and then decide to quit entirely. So far, the thing that has really worked for me this time, is taking all the information I can gather, meshing it together and making up my OWN running plan. One thing I've learned - I'm not like everyone else (who is?) and what works for you may not work for me. I need to set my own pace, my own goals. And, so far, that's been working. I quit C25k after I hit the 1 mile run mark...and then I started out on my own, attempting time and again to hit 2 miles, then 3, then 3.5. If I just keep using that system, I may be able to achieve a goal I (honestly) never thought possible. Me, run a HM? Uhm...maybe.
Things that have worked for me:
1. Running 3 times a week.
2. One easy run, going only for a distance I *know* I can do.
3. One speedwork run, concentrating on time and pace.
4. One LDR, concentrating on pushing my body to a new distance best.
5. Circuit training on 2 days. It has really helped my running muscles get stronger, while not requiring them to run too much (and sometimes a 2 minute easy jog is included, so sometimes I "run" 4 days in the week).
6. Setting a distance goal for my LDR, and trying week after week until I hit it.
7. Not worrying about what everyone else is doing. This is a HUGE one for me. So you ran 10 miles today and I ran 2? Who cares! I'm following MY plan and 2 miles was my goal for the day, so I win!
So, in my head, my running plan looks like this:
Easy Run on Mondays of 2 miles
Speedwork on Wednesday, increasing the speed of my fast intervals and how many intervals I try to do each week. (This week was to be 7 intervals at 5.3...we'll be doing that next week.)
LDR of 5 miles (It's the mental thing. I need to show myself I can do this. And if I come out of it hitting only 4 or 4.5, I'll still have won for November.)
Easy Run on Mondays of 2.5-3 miles
Speedwork on Wednesdays, same as before, increasing speed and # of intervals
LDR of 6 miles
* 5k on December 11th, the day after I get back from DC training
Easy Run on Mondays of 2.5-3 miles
Speedwork on Wednesdays, same as before, increasing speed and # of intervals
LDR of 7 miles
* 8k on January 8th, my birthday!
Easy Run on Mondays of 3 miles
Speedwork on Wednesday, same as before
LDR of 9 miles
* 10k on February 5th
Easy Run on Mondays of 3 miles
Speedwork on Wednesday, same as before
LDR of 11 miles
Easy Run on Mondays of 3 miles
Speedwork on Wednesday, same as before
LDR of 13 miles
May 5th - Capital City HM
I read one guide that said you should run your LDR at your long distance 2 weeks in a row before trying to up it by 1/2 a mile the next week. Example:
1st Saturday - run 4 miles
2nd Saturday - run 3.5 to 4 miles
3rd Saturday - run 4.5 miles
4th Saturday - run 4-4.5 miles
5th Saturday - run 5 miles
That sounds great, but I don't know that I'll have time for that once May starts getting closer. I'll admit - I'm terrified. The idea right now of getting to 5 miles is mentally my block right now. The idea of 8-10 miles seems pretty dang impossible. And 13 miles? HA! So, it would be a serious challenge...and I might not make it.
Unlike some of you, I can't take walk breaks on my runs. Maybe that will come with time, but as it stands right now, if I stop in the middle of my run to "rest"...I can't get back into the run. I could run 2 miles, break for just a couple minutes, and then, by the time I try to start running again, I can't even match my 2 miles, let alone push past it. I have NO CLUE how y'all do the walk/run thing past the initial stages of C25k...but, for me, my brain does not compute. Some people have said, "I can't even run 3 miles without stopping at least once!" but, for me, I can't run 3 miles if I have to stop to walk. It doesn't work for me. And I'm not sure if that's a mental thing or what. It seems like, once I stop running, I start feeling the run...and trying to start again after that? Yeah, no. Not happening. It's like running a 5k in the morning and then trying to run another 5k an hour later. My body thinks it's done and it rebels. "Hell no! I'm not doing that again! I did what you asked of me, so leave me alone now!" *shrug*
So, on we go, right?! I've been taking this running thing easy on my body for the past few months, and that has worked. Finally, I can say that I'm a runner. But, eventually (I'm HOPING), I'll be able to settle into challenging my body just a tiny bit more. Today I feel like tomorrow will be the day I run 5 miles. I feel it. I didn't do my speedwork, so maybe my body will be rested enough to really give it a go. I'm going to give it my all. I'm going to create the most kick@ss playlist and I'm going to remember all of you who helped me along the way. Encouraging me when all I could think to accomplish was walking a mile and, eventually, a 5k. I looked at my pictures again from last year, from the finish of my first 5k ever, where I walked the whole thing and it nearly killed me. Where I got the blister from hell and continued on. And I think about how far I've come since then and even I am amazed.
Something tells me I shouldn't have been able to do this. And then I look back and look at my running logs from this year and I realize that I AM doing it. I don't run fast. I don't run 5-10 mile distances. But I run (normally) 3 times a week. I can run a 5k without stopping for a single break. I can run because I am a runner.
On April 6th of this year I ran my first tracked run with my new Nike+ GPS program. Since then I've logged 130.1 miles. I've run while injured. I've run while incredibly sick. I want to run. My body craves it. (The runners legs I dream of and am trying to create NEEDS it! *lol*)
So, what's next?
1. Finally bite the bullet and sign up for those 4 races.
2. Get my 5 miles (tomorrow, I hope!).
3. Challenge myself to stay on task, stay on MY training plan and KEEP RUNNING.
I think running with a friend, even though she's miles away, will help as well.
Another note, I keep hearing people talk about inspiring them. I've been trying to take that compliment well. Let's be honest, even as a small child I craved the opportunity to make myself an example and an inspiration to others. But lately, it's been freaking me out a little bit. How do I take that? Because all I want to do is focus on me. I want to inspire me. I see what I'm doing and, yes, I think it's great. I take great pride in it. But sometimes it's hard to remember that "I'm amazing" feeling when my inner doubter turns to comparing herself to others. I try to ignore other running reports because I don't want to be discouraged. I fear telling the people I know back at home who are running that HM in May that I'm thinking of doing it as well. Partly because I remember how I felt during that 2-Mile Firecracker Run last July...the last race I ran because it tore me apart mentally and emotionally. (I'm running it again next year...and I WILL run the entire thing!) And also because I don't want to hear or see doubt in their eyes. Sometimes I read it when it's not even there. Can I be proud of myself even when my run pace is barely faster than a 15 minute mile? Even Spark doesn't count this pace as "running" (which is a travesty, in my book!). And what will they think when they see me? Because...
But for now, I will focus on me. My training. My schedule. My achievements. Whatever I look like when I run, THIS is what's important...
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
Well, I've gone once again from the girl trying to fill her time to a girl with little time left to do anything. Oh, the joys of a crazy life and its constant ups and downs.
I got one day this week (Monday) when I had little to nothing to do. I spent the entire day writing for NaNo and got up to nearly 10k words. And then yesterday the boss calls a meeting and I get added to my roster:
- Helping out a coworker on a case
- 2 cases transferred to me from another coworker
- 1 case transferred from yet another coworker (was expecting this one)
- AND helping out another one of my Supervisors with a huge event coming up next month
- Not to mention the freaking out and unnecessary research I did yesterday for a training program that I went from attending to now maybe speaking at! *bites fingernails*
*sigh* So yesterday I went from a girl who wondered if she could write 10k words in one day, to wondering when I'd ever get a chance to work on the darn novel again. Life, right!?
Still, I've tried to keep up with everything. The eating front needs some work. We're not totally off track but I've been allowing too many, "Oh, just one (or four) won't hurt me...I can have a high calorie day now and again." So, yeah, need to nip that in the bud RIGHT NOW, especially considering Mr. Scale is in joke mode again and giving me false 299 readings just about once a day. (He thinks he's HILARIOUS, but he's not going to find it funny when I shove my foot up his....nevermind.)
Monday I had the unexpected challenge of football practice added into the mix. Thankfully I have short days this week (thanks to Veteran's Day on Friday), so I was able to attend. Unthankfully, I still needed to get in an easy run. So, I did what most crazy moms do...I put on my running clothes under my work clothes about 10 minutes before work ended, rushed home, grabbed the boy, took him to practice, and proceeded to strip off my outer "work" layer in the parking lot. *snort* I told Logan he was running with me and told him to wear comfortable shoes.
Little joker thought it'd be funny to WALK next to me as I was jogging. I wanted to smack him...seriously! I finally turned to him and said, "Dude! I can WALK this slow too, but running requires the use of a whole different set of muscles. At least pretend, okay!?" I don't think he would've been walking and smiling so much by the end of the first 1/2 mile, because by then he was already starting to feel it. We ran through the streets of town. Every time we came across an intersection, I'd turn to him and say, "Left, right, or straight?" We ran past a bunch of people out talking a walk (it was a beautiful fall night!). By the first mile marker we were both starting to count down the 1/4 miles.
We ended up on an uphill stretch around milemarker 1.25, which we grunted through...and then got a downhill just after. I had let Logan lead the way most of the time, letting him set the pace. On easy run nights, I focus only on getting my distance in, allowing my body to feel the running motion, and breathing. I don't worry about timing or pace or any of it. I just want to remember why I enjoy running without pushing my body so darn hard. Logan was leading at a pretty decent clip - about 14:20mm pace. Not too fast, good for maintaining throughout the entire workout (the only time we got slower was on the uphill part). Slow and steady, steady and slow, that's the way my easy runs go. ;)
By the time we hit the downhill, right about at the 1.5 mile mark, Logan fell behind me and I took the lead. As he settled in on the downhill, and as I was remarking on the amazing nature of the downhill and the ability to "coast" and let gravity do a lot of the work, I noticed his shadow was WALKING behind me. I immediately (without turning around) said, "Don't stop! Keep running!" He caught back up to me and said, "Geez! You're just like my teacher! You've got eyes in the back of your head!" *lol*
By the time we hit around 1.75 miles we were really feeling it. The talking and joking had stopped, we were only focused on finishing (and I was slightly distracted by the fit and fabulous runner who easily passed us... *sigh* Took me a minute to remind myself that her run was not mine, and vice versa.). It was then that I noticed that our breathing was completely in sync. We were huffing and puffing at the exact same time and it made me laugh to myself. (Of course later, I teased him about it -- "Either I'm in REALLY good shape, or you are in HORRIBLE shape!" *lol* I still want to believe the former.)
2 miles later, we finished our run and started our cool down walk up the hill. I was surprised at how amazing I felt. Surprised, once again, that while I struggled IN my two miles (mostly mental struggle), I came out of it feeling good. Not overly tired. Not incredibly hungry or thirsty or in any way exhausted. I stretched, and then sat down to enjoy the HOUR AND A HALF (hear the sarcasm) we had left in the FREEZING cold. (Here's a tip, make sure you bring plenty of layers if you're going for a run and then plan on sitting in the 40-50 degree weather for a while after...as the sweat has settled onto your skin and the wind starts blowing?! BRRRRRRR!
Yesterday, I was to do my 30 minute NTC circuit training routine. Ethan had asked the night before if he could do one this week. He really has a great time with them (even if he does do a lot of the moves WRONG! *snort*) and he plans on using it for conditioning in the off season so he can maybe fight for a 1st string slot next season. So on my way home from work yesterday I got this crazy idea to do my 30 minutes with him.
I called him up.
Me: "Hey, so I'm doing my 30 minute circuit training tonight. Want to do it with me?"
Ethan: "Well, would I be screwing up your schedule or anything?"
Me: "No. This is what's scheduled tonight. I can either go to the gym and do it by myself, or I can come home and we can do it together."
Ethan: "Well, I'd like to do it with you, if that's alright."
Me: "Well, dress warm. I'll be home soon."
First of all, I love that he doesn't want to "screw up my schedule" right now. He knows how I've been pushing/fighting for consistency in my workouts the past couple weeks, and he knows how important it is to me to stay on task. Second of all, I love that he'll quit his video game in order to work out for 30 minutes with his Momma. :)
I didn't expect it to be quite that dark when I finally got home (had to hit the store first for some green peppers and peas for the fried rice), but we did our entire workout on the front lawn with a million cars passing by and I didn't care one single bit. (Okay, the hip lifts were a little strange out there. *snort*) There was something magical about having 2 full workouts with my boys and something even more incredible about doing last night's circuit training under the stars. I got my workout in AND got some valuable time with my sons..and that feels great!
Tonight, however, is all about me. I need to focus tonight because it's speedwork night. The plan is:
5 minute warm up
7 intervals each of 5.3 fast run and 4.3 jog
5 minute cool down
I think I figured out the time and it will be about 27.5 minutes.
Tomorrow? Tomorrow I will be SO happy to see my rest day again! *lol* I have that training tomorrow too, so I need to be focused on that and nothing else.
So, yeah, craziness abounds in my world once again. Other things on my mind include:
- I really, really want some Kale Tofu Stir Fry! Putting it on the menu for next week.
- I really want to learn to make excellent fried Tofu at home.
- I need some good sushi VERY soon!
- I need to prep the T-Day menu. (Thanks Spark for some great suggestions!)
- I need a blender like WOAH! (So sick of having to ignore certain recipes because I can't BLEND anything.)
- There are 45 shopping days until Christmas and I haven't bought a SINGLE present! ACK!!!!!!
- I have 3 potlucks coming up. The first is a cookout on Saturday with Ethan's team (we're bringing pop because we already have a ton in the stockpile we never drink). The second is the banquet on Sunday (I THINK I'm making Stuffed Cabbage Rolls and halving each roll and making a double batch - that'd be 48 mini cabbage rolls.). The third is a work luncheon on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving (and I'm bringing my FAVORITE thing to bring -- veggies! Making another one of my classic HUGE salads with 3 kinds of lettuce, mushrooms, radishes, carrots, broccoli, and whatever other veggie I like in my salad. And then people can just grab whatever dressing they like and YUM-CITY! :) )
- I need new shoes for work.
- I need new work pants too! I have 1 pair that still fits, 1 that fits but the hips are HUGE now, and 1 that nearly falls down when I walk. *sigh* NEED NEW PANTS.
- Oh, what else...And, oh yeah, 299...299...299...I just keep chanting that over and over and over.
Get An Email Alert Each Time CALLIKIA Posts