Monday, April 30, 2012
I didn't work out this weekend (Saturday I was out all day for a bridal shower and hanging out with friends, Sunday I had a migraine and didn't feel well all day) so I got up early this morning with the intention of a long run, which for me is 4 or more miles. After getting my son ready for school, doing some laundry, having a good breakfast and getting my daughter ready for school, I headed out. At first I felt really tired and sluggish, but after the first mile I started to feel great. As I ran, I did a lot of thinking. The time seemed to fly by, even though I wasn't running very fast (I take my runs slower if they are more than 3 miles) and it just felt good being outside running for miles, and being a person who does this, regularly. It's still hard for me to believe I am a runner sometimes and I amaze myself with what I've been able to do.
By the end of 3 miles, I felt so great, so I decided to keep going until I got to 5. On Sunday, I am doing a trail race that's called Run Like a Girl 8k, so I wanted to practice for that. My route included all the big hills in and outside of my neighborhood. It was challenging, but I felt great. My time for the 5 miles ended up being 55:50, which is faster than I've done 5 miles before.
For lunch I had the most delicious food. I cooked up onions, a bunch of different peppers, and zucchini and put some fajita seasoning on them, and then I stirred in some ready made brown rice and quinoa. I topped it with a couple spoonfuls of plain greek yogurt, and it was such a yummy filling lunch, not to mention very healthy. We're having turkey burgers for dinner. I am planning my food carefully this week because of eating out so much this weekend. There was a birthday dinner Friday complete with cake and pizza, and a sodium filled lunch on Saturday at the shower, also with a cupcake, so I needed to make sure I get back to my normal eating, or I know I'll gain weight from the carb overload.
On an unrelated topic, I was so excited yesterday because our baby bluebirds left the nestbox. We have a nestbox outside our kitchen window and each year bluebirds nest in it. This year they nested early and she laid 5 eggs. My daughter and I got to see all 5 babies leave the box! It was lucky that we got to see it. I was just standing there watching the parents bring bugs to the babies, and every now and then I'd see a baby poke their head out, and then one flew out, then the other 4 followed. It made me really happy because I love nature and it's one of the reasons I love running outside. Today on my run I saw some geese with their babies in a field, and we have mockingbirds with nests in our bushes and the ones next door, so I've been watching them feed their babies. Occasionally I see a deer, snake or rabbits on my runs, along with many different kinds of birds. I could never run all my runs on a treadmill, because it's just not the same.
If you run, do you prefer running outside or on the treadmill?
Monday, April 16, 2012
My last run was Friday, and I'd planned to go out early this morning because my husband would be here and I wanted to get it done before it started to get hot (it was supposed to be 90 today). I had a bad dream and woke up a lot earlier than I needed to be up, at 5:30. My head was hurting, and I couldn't fall back to sleep, so I got up and started making my son's lunch for school and had my breakfast (peanut butter on a multigrain english muffin and some milk).
I felt great as I got outside and did some stretching. The air felt cool and breezy and it was just a pretty morning. I normally stretch for a few minutes and then walk for a few minutes before I start to actually run. During my walk, I was just itching to run, but I didn't want to start early before I had warmed up enough. Once I started, I felt awesome. My head still hurt a little bit, but I felt like I had so much energy. As the run progressed, I realized my head didn't hurt anymore.
I try not to constantly look at my watch, but I glance once in a while to see how far I've gone, and I realized that if I pushed a little harder in the last half mile, I could finish this 3 miles faster than I ever have. My time for 3.01 miles ended up being 31:58. I felt awesome and really proud of that. For me, that is fast, especially considering I ran on grass for part of it (I'm trying to give my body a break by running on grassy areas where I can) and I got distracted by a dog that was chasing me (seriously, why don't people leash their dogs and keep them in their own yards???)
There are times when I run that I feel like it's dragging on forever and I have no energy, or something is hurting, or it's harder to breathe. Today nothing ached, I felt like I had tons of energy, my breathing was awesome; it was just a great run. Running is something I never thought I'd be able to do, or that I ever wanted to do, but I have come to love it. When I am out there just going for miles and breathing in fresh air, and seeing herons or other birds (I'm a birder) it makes me feel so alive. That is what this is all about, feeling alive and being healthy.
Lately, I feel like I might even train for a half marathon at some point. It's something I really feel like I could do, but the training would be more time consuming and draining. When my daughter starts school full time in the fall, I think it's something I might consider doing around that time. Summers here are incredibly hot and humid, and I am not sure it's something I'm ready to do right now.
A Runner is something I consider myself now, and it feels so awesome.
Friday, March 30, 2012
Yesterday I went to pick up my packet for the race, which is tomorrow. I was super excited when I got there and saw all of the cool running things you could buy. For about an hour I wandered around looking at everything, and really enjoyed myself. They had so many different running shirts, and a few were pretty funny. I ended up getting this one.
Sorry it's hard to read it, but it says, "if you see me collapse, pause my garmin" I just had to laugh when I saw it because my garmin has become a security blanket for me when I go out running and I almost never venture out for a run without it. There were a few other tanks that I would have gotten if they'd had them in my size. It was hard to find any in XL. One I really liked said, "Running slow is not a character flaw, quitting is."
The other purchase I made was a set of 3 headbands to wear when working out. I got 2 of the same (one I gave to my best friend) with owls on it that is super cute. I am wearing it in the photo, sorry it's not the best picture. The other one has ladybugs. They are by a company called RazzyRoo Headbands. Here is a photo I snapped really quick this morning to show the detail.
The woman at the RazzyRoo stand was really nice and she seemed very impressed with my weight loss. She had lost some weight herself and told me she ran, I believe, 9 half marathons last year! Maybe one day I'll train for one of those. Everyone keeps telling me I should, but I am not sure I am ready yet.
For the race tomorrow I think I am going to wear the tank I bought instead of the race shirt. The race shirt is really cute, but I get so hot in regular t-shirts and I think I'll feel cooler in the tank. Tomorrow morning it's supposed to be in the upper 50s, but my wave starts a little later and I am sure it will warm up some. I have learned not to overdress when I run, because then I feel miserable. My wave is the first jogging wave. Something like 40,000 people do this race, so there are a ton of waves. I decided to wear my race shirt today. See my doggie on the floor in the background? :)
Soon I'll be leaving to pick up my daughter from preschool, and we're going to Panera for lunch. I think I'll treat myself to some mac and cheese since I haven't had anything like that in a while. Tomorrow morning can't get here fast enough. I just want to run this thing. I've had so many people ask me lately what is the point of doing this if I don't get a medal and know I won't win a prize. The point is that I CAN. I used to weigh 325 pounds and walking a mile or 2 briskly was a challenge, and now I can run. I am proof that no matter how out of shape you are, you can make your body do what you want it to do. It just takes time, patience, and dedication.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
My 10k is Saturday and today was my last run until then. Tomorrow I'll do some sort of cardio and then Thursday and Friday are rest days. Since I only had 2 miles to run today, I decided to give it all I had and run as fast as I could. I have never run so fast!
When I first stepped out, it was chilly, somewhere in the 40s. We've been having warm days here, even some record highs in the 80s, but today it's back to chilly. I don't know about most people, but I love to run when it's like 40-50 degrees. At first I am always a little chilly, but as I run for a few minutes I warm up and feel great. The heat causes me to tire out more easily and it seems harder to breathe, but today I felt like I was flying. It was cold, but sunny and I'd rather run on a day like today than when it's 70 degrees.
I glanced down at my watch and realized I had almost completed the first mile, and I did it in 9:58! Never in my life have I run a mile that fast. I was breathing hard, but I wanted to see if I could do the next mile fast and beat my current record for 2 miles, which was 21:37. I finished the 2nd mile in 10:23, so for the 2 miles I finished in 20:21! Both of those miles were the fastest I'd ever run. I think my previous record for a mile was 10:25.
Since I pushed myself hard, I was tired after those 2 miles and glad I didn't have to run further. I came in and did some strength training circuits and stretched. It's weird to know my training is over and my next run will be the race. Sometimes it's hard to believe that over the last year I've become a runner, because it was never something I ever conceived of doing in any way, shape or form.
Thanks to all of you who read my blog from yesterday. I feel a lot better now, and even though my body will never look perfect, I am proud of what it's been capable of doing. I don't know of many people weighing close to 200 pounds who can run for miles. :)
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
This morning was to be my last long run before the 10k, which is on the 31st. I have trained for 8 weeks, and I am proud that I didn't miss a single run or workout. If I had to change them around I did, but I completed all the runs and even added in walking on days I felt really good. Most weeks I also ran a little further on the long runs than was scheduled, because I had run 5 miles before and knew I could, and wanted to have actually run the race distance once before the actual race.
When I woke up I felt like crap. My head was hurting and I felt crampy (my period is due) and I thought, "Great. This will be fun." For a split second I thought about just doing it Friday when my husband would be off, but the weather is supposed to be raining off and on the rest of the week, and so I just decided I would do it, but take it slow. So, I had a piece of toast with almond butter and a clementine, got ready and headed out.
I did the first mile very slow, like 12:44, and I decided I would keep an easy comfortable pace for the first few miles. When I just started mile 4 I started to feel tired, but decided to pick up my speed a little. While running I felt great. My head wasn't even hurting and I just felt like I could run all day at the easy pace. Upon checking the garmin I saw I had less than half a mile left, so I picked up my speed a little more. I also started to feel emotional, which I do any time I complete a distance I've never done. "Don't cry now, wait till later," I told myself because I didn't want to screw with my breathing.
As I finished, I had the best feeling. I truly do get those runner's highs, because I feel like I could do anything in that moment. I am so proud of myself for doing this training and sticking to it. It feels amazing to get out there and run and accomplish this. It's something I never dreamed I'd do.
My total running time for the 6.2 miles was 1:16:15.
Mile 1: 12:44
Mile 2: 12:33
Mile 3: 12:28
Mile 4: 12:24
Mile 5: 12:00
Mile 6: 11:50
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