Monday, April 30, 2012
On my last blog a very good sparkfreind reminded me that a year ago at this time I was getting ready for my first 5K. And now I'm 6 weeks away from a marathon.
I was in pretty good shape when I started running last year. I wasn't doing couch to 5K. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with that program. If anything, I am more impressed by people that do that than by what I did. I think I had an easier road than some because of how much I was already exercising. But like all runners know, running is different. Physically and mentally. I was so inspired by all the 5K blogs on Spark and I wanted to be a part of it. I am still in awe of all the people of all different sizes and backgrounds and abilities that run a 5K. I really believe that the beauty of Spark lies in the member blogs. If she can do that, so can I...
I have distinct memories of the first time I ran 3 miles without stopping. I'll never forget my first 6 mile run when I stopped and threw a fit and hit DH's back and started to cry. He told me to get over it. I did. And then I signed up for a 10 mile race. Again, in large part because of Spark blogs about HMs. They gave me the confidence that I could do it too. And I did. And then I signed up for a real HM. And then another. I am totally smitten by races.
The marathon was my dad's idea. I've mentioned him a lot in my blogs. I grew up watching his marathons. Every Saturday morning as I read the comics and ate cereal he would come in the back door and tell me about what his running group did that day. (They still meet every Saturday. 20 years!) So I know running was in my bones. I think this is another reason it's been easier for me. I grew up with it, I have the family support. I can only imagine how hard it would be without those pieces.
But the marathon is also another product of Spark. Your blogs gave me confidence, your comments on my blogs made me want to do more. It's like the more motivation I was finding here, the more I ended up putting out. Spark karma!
I have found an incredible support network on Spark. I've learned so so much. And I have come so so far. Thank you, Becky, for reminding me of that. Thank you to all of you that blog your ups and downs. Your 5Ks and your marathons. Thank you to all of you that leave a comment. Those silly emoticons matter.
I am so glad that Spark is a part of my journey. I'd never be training for a marathon if it weren't. It would have just stayed a silent dream. So write down your dream. It may come true!
Monday, April 23, 2012
Last week's long run was an incredible 16 miles. After the previous week's so-so run I needed this. I ran the first 4 with my sister, her friend, and my sister-in-law who is 33 weeks pregnant. We went slow and enjoyed some girl talk.
They turned right to a coffee shop and I turned left to run 12 more miles. Alone. I was actually looking forward to the alone time. And the whole thing went surprisingly well. I changed my route because I was so close to Minnehaha Falls in Minneapolis and I wanted to check it out.
I love how Instagram makes me look like a good photographer.
I went down the steps and ran through the trails. It was peaceful and invigorating. So cool to be in the middle of a city and have such great nature.
After checking out the falls I ran to my brother's house and asked for a banana. I still had 7 miles to go and was hungry. They laughed and sent me on my way.
I use the mapmyrun app and I love the voice that announces mileage and average pace. I call her Siri's sister. My average pace kept dropping with each mile. I wasn't trying to go fast, I was just running what felt normal. I forget what the pace was by the end of the run. Maybe right around 9:30mm. The next day I was sore. And the next day and the day after that. I guess I pushed it a little too much and should have slowed down. I know it is the Long Slow Run and all, but I just went with what felt right.
So good to have a 16 mile run that felt great because after the 14 miler I was a little concerned with the distance and time commitment of training. It went so well that I was wasn't even nervous for 17 miles.
Yesterday morning a group of us met up again. We started the first 3.5 just like last week. All together, real slow and easy. Then my husband and I went out on our own. Just like last week, we kept getting the app announcement that our average pace was dropping with each mile. I said we needed to slow down and it felt like we did. I was talking the whole time and felt great.
We were about half way around our 2nd lake and it was mile 11 and I realized that we were probably further than 6 miles from home. I know, I know. How do I use a GPS app that maps everything and gives pace, but I didn't properly map out the run beforehand??! Well, I trusted my dad. That's a fair mistake! And I wasn't letting it get to me because when we hit 13.1 our time was 1:49. That is faster than my HM PR. And I felt great!! How is this happening?! Of course that negative voice jumps in and says: "Maybe this is your peak. maybe this is your best running and you'll get hurt before June." Shut up mean voice! I am a runner and loving it!
Long story, short: we ended up running 19. I fueled much better eating a Stinger honey waffle (holy yum!) around mile 9 and a mocha GU at 14. Still not a huge GU fan. At 16 I hit my "crabby wall" and sent my husband ahead of me. I was shocked by how good I felt throughout the run and even at the end once I got time to myself and back into that runner's zone. I was really shocked that my average pace was 8:49.
I think the biggest thing I've learned from this is START SLOW. I know that slow means different things for different people. All runners need to do what's best for their bodies. Starting slow makes sense. Warm up, right?! Well, I think I've always started too fast and then been zapped.
I am still shocked by how good I feel today. No soreness like last week. I feel ready for a marathon. I know I'll have another bad run before then and that's OK. It's good for mental toughness. Everyone that says training is a journey is absolutely right.
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Had to share. From pinterest.
oh, bummer. You can't really read that. Just squint, k?
Friday, April 13, 2012
Its been a long week at work. DH works late tonight. The fridge is empty. The last thing I wanted to do was go grocery shopping and figure out something for a quick and healthy dinner that would make me and the kids happy. But better to do it quick on my own after work on a Friday than Saturday morning with toddlers in tow.
I quickly ran in and every crap food was calling my name. Here's my new secret weapon that I use when this happens. You turn your butt around and march back to the produce section. Buy every beautiful veggie you see. Yep, it's expensive. But it is way better than buying a bag of tortilla chips and salsa. Omg, tortilla chips and salsa. I sincerely apologize if I am activating any cravings... Ok, seriously, buy the produce. Buy baby carrots. Then buy A huge bag of carrots that you can peel yourself and save cash. Get what you need and that's it. Tempted to throw a bag of Oreos in the cart,back to the produce section for you! This time throw in a fresh pineapple. And then get outta that flippin store!
That's what's i did tonight and it worked. The kids munched happily on carrot sticks (no ranch!) while I chopped onions, broccol, bell peppers and that pineapple. I love roasted veggies. Quickly made homemade turkey meatballs and wow is this better than doritos. I will not feel gross tomorrow. No guilt involved. Fresh, real food for me and my family. Today I totally beat all that marketing crap machine of processed junk!!
One more thing I have to share with. My sparkles... Today when I walked into the gym to pick up my kindergarteners from Phy. Ed. Two huge ropes were hanging from the ceiling. I have Worked at this school for seven years and never seen the ropes. I LOVED the ropes in grade school. I told my class how much I loved it and one boy screamed "show us!!" (they had been swinging on the ropes, not climbing) so for about 10 seconds I was the coolest kindergarten teacher in the world because I jumped on the rope and attempted to climb up. The kids went crazy. I barely got anywhere and my hands kill now. But I know I impressed the Phy. Ed. Teacher!
Workout like a kid! Eat a garden! Have a good weekend everybody.
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