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    LDRICHEL   47,763
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Running For Life...In So Many Ways

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Thursday, May 31, 2012

If you've been hanging around my SparkPage lately (I'm sure there are LEGIONS of you that have! pssshh), you may have noticed a couple changes recently. I'm not talking about my weight loss ticker or all the pics I keep posting (although, those are great and very motivational...I highly recommend checking them out!) Last night, I changed my "About Me" section to reflect my upcoming races. I've seen this on many pages of runners and tri athletes alike and I liked the idea of throwing my intentions out there for the world to see and keep me accountable.

More subtly, you might have noticed that, in this list of races, there are 3 half marathons...the first of which is MUCH earlier than I originally planned. Yeah, you're right if you're thinking to yourself, "Didn't you just run your first 5k ever?" Yep.

So, here's the explanation. I had signed up for a few 5k races over the next 6 months or so. But it was recommended by my trainer that I work up to at least 10k endurance at my own pace, but as soon as my body allows...to prepare for the Indy Mini next year in May. Last night I went online to see if I could maybe find some 10k races around me in the midwest, so I could gain that valuable race experience before going straight from a 5k into a half marathon.

And then it happened. I stumbled upon the MOST perfect half marathon for me. The Purdue Boilermaker Half Marathon on October 20th. I sat there and stared for what seemed like half an hour. My heart was a-flutter. Why? Because this is my alma mater. I haven't been back in years. I have so many special memories of my time at Purdue and the very thought of my first big race being on that hallowed ground...it literally almost brought tears to my eyes. There really wasn't any other choice. When I saw it, I thought, "I HAVE to do this." And that was that.

Once I realized that the training plan for a half is about 15 weeks long and that I'd need to put that training plan into effect literally...like next week, things suddenly got VERY serious. I have plugged in every single run and crosstraining day in my calendar from now until October. I'm not messing around, y'all. I refuse to go into that race unprepared and out of shape. I know racing isn't for everyone...but, for me, this is a sure way to keep me on track with my fitness goals and also, in large part, my nutrition goals as well.

In fact, this very morning, I was pretty angry at that alarm for having the nerve to go off so stinkin' early. Of COURSE the thought ran through my head that no one was holding a gun to my head and forcing me to go for a run today. But, right on that thought's heels came another..."Someone WILL be holding a gun on October 20th to start a 13.1 mile race that YOU have said you want to do. So...maybe you should get up and just do it."

Well...wouldn't you know? I got up.

And found I'd lost another pound. And set a personal best 5k time at 41:49. This was not an easy run. I had some stomach issues about halfway through, but I am rather proud to say that I ran the entire first half of that 5k without stopping. That's a big deal for me. It staggers me that my endurance has built up so quickly (literally about 6 weeks ago, I could barely run a 1.5 minute interval). This run this morning was really tough near the end...the last half mile was just sheer determination. But my gosh...I wanted to beat that 5k time from my race last Saturday and I was gonna do it, come hell or high water or the most miserable blister forming on my left heel. I pushed my body hard today.

And I feel amazing! I know a lot of non-runners that HATE running (ha...I was one for YEARS). They look at me like I'm insane and I know they think, "WHY are you doing this?"

[Warning: TMI alert. Stop here if you are overly-senstive]

1. Obviously, endorphin rush is pretty amazing. I'm gonna be honest and say that I do think it's better than an orgasm...because...the feeling lasts ALL DAY LONG. And that's pretty powerful as a motivator.

2. I thought about my Aunt Lois this morning, as I drew a deep breath in and felt my lungs expand...so clear and strong. I literally watched her die as she drowned in her own lung fluid. I don't mean to be crass, but I know that she would want me to take care of these lungs. And to use them to their full capacity...to enjoy life with my breath every day.

3. My legs feel INCREDIBLE. They aren't lookin' too shabby these days, either. *wink* After the injuries that I've seen...the strength that I feel just walking upright is inexplicable.

4. My entire body feels tighter...more compact and like it's finally all working together the way it SHOULD be.

5. My core is just about as fit as it's ever been. Crosstraining with weights, pilates, resistance band, jump rope and my own body weight have completely changed the way I carry myself physically and the level of exertion it takes to do so.

6. My heart. And I'm not talking about the one with blood vessels and chambers...although, that's working pretty nicely now too. There's a feeling of confidence that I've never experienced. Did you read that? NEVER...in my entire life. I have never loved myself, accepted my flaws, had faith that I could change the things about myself that aren't quite right...until now. When I say I'm a completely different person, I quite literally mean that.

And the most exciting part is...if all these things have happened and changed for me in just a short 6 weeks or so of running...what kind of a person will I be by the time I run that half marathon in October? I have no way of imagining it..but I can guarantee strength, confidence, joy and health.

And those are some pretty great guarantees.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOULDSGRANITE 6/5/2012 9:53AM

    You got me ready to run! Now I need help picking out running shoes ~ lol! emoticon

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KAPELAKIN 6/5/2012 1:13AM

    You are so inspiring! Good luck on your half and any other upcoming races. You're putting me to shame with waiting until next year to go for a half.

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ST8NLIFE 6/4/2012 3:21PM

  emoticon emoticon Good Luck with your training. You are amazing...I am adding you to my friend list so I can find you again! Thank you for the motivation!

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WENDYWHIT30 6/4/2012 3:18PM

    Go Boilers! That's so exciting - I think if it's the perfect goal. I might have to try and run that one next year (my alma mater too, just in case you couldn't feel my oozing enthusiasm). I'm trying to get back into running - I started back in 2006, ran a 5K and I think I signed up for the Indy Mini even before I ran the 5K. I remember getting a migraine the night I signed up for the half because I was flipping out that I had done it! Long story short, I'm about 50 pounds heavier than I was when I was previously running...turning it around with C25K again. So frustrated with my slowness, but I know speed will come. Good luck with your training and have a drink at Harry's after you fly through the finish line!!!

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CINDHOLM 6/4/2012 12:44PM

    emoticon

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CURVYELVIESAYS 6/3/2012 9:40PM

    emoticon

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LESSISMORE2010 6/3/2012 7:08PM

    LOVE this blog!!! You're doing amazing! Congrats on finding your perfect race!

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MELLYBEANS0919 6/3/2012 2:43PM

    Amazing! It made me smile reading it. You will do really great!

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JOYANN84 6/3/2012 11:52AM

    emoticon emoticon

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TEESLIM 6/3/2012 9:40AM

  Very very well said.......you've summed up why I go to the gym everyday and run for 45 mins, swim 15 mins AND why I seldom, if ever, feel stressed.....congratulations....kee
p motivating

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KINDYW 6/3/2012 9:24AM

    Hey, glad I found your blog. I'm also from Indy..training for my first 5K (going pretty slow to be honest) and eyeing the mini next May. Good luck to you on the Purdue run. You must be pretty psyched that it is at your alma mater!

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TINABINA5 6/3/2012 8:42AM

    Way to go! You willkick Burt at Purdue! Spark on. emoticon

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MISSLISA1973 6/3/2012 12:23AM

    emoticon
Thanks for sharing this very inspirational blog!

My first half marathon will be the Women's Half starting on Monument Circle September 1 (http://www.indywomenshalfmarathon.
com/). I did the 5K at it last year and am excited to do the half this year. emoticon

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MOMJULIEC 6/2/2012 11:23PM

    Thanks for the inspiration!

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JEANNINEMM68 6/2/2012 7:51PM

    emoticon

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SHOAPIE 6/2/2012 4:15PM

    emoticon emoticon

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SERASARA 6/2/2012 2:57PM

  emoticon

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MANILUS 6/2/2012 1:25PM

    So happy for you!

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PAPPHEM 6/2/2012 11:32AM

    Good luck! With your enthusiasm, it will be a breeze! What training program are you using? I keep thinking about doing a half too and you may have just convinced me to try it!

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CMERUN29 6/2/2012 10:31AM

    I'm so happy that you've discovered a love of running. Good luck with all of your training and you will ROCK your half-marathon in October.

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JIBBIE49 6/2/2012 10:17AM

    Love seeing your blog featured in the Spark Mail. WHAT A STAR you are and inspiration to others!!!! emoticon

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KTISFOCUSED 6/2/2012 8:43AM

    Inspiring! Keep up the hard work and you're right you WILL look and feel amazing by the time you're ready.

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SWEDE_SU 6/2/2012 4:59AM

    you have the right attitude, and the right stuff. when i started training for my HM in 2007 (like you, going from nothing to the insanity of an HM in just a short time, because my DH said, why not?), i read something that has stayed with me ever since - once you have conquered the 3 mile (5k) distance, when you are training for, and then running that HM, these words stuck with me - "anyone can run 3 miles" - because if you have been running the way you are now, and as you train for that HM, the last 3 miles will always be there - and you *can* make it in, because anyone can run 3 miles.

yes, we can! emoticon

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CHUM48 6/1/2012 10:17PM

    Good luck!

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TIFFY0906 6/1/2012 8:56PM

    Have fun training for your half marathon - I'm sure you are going to do great. I like your comment about the endorphin rush being better than an orgasm - I think I have to agree.

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KIPPER15 6/1/2012 8:37PM

    Good luck with your training and races

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MERAMIRE 6/1/2012 8:12PM

  Good luck! I am new to SparkPeople by reading Health magazine. I love this site. Keep on training!

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JEANNINEMM68 6/1/2012 7:15PM

    Good luck with your training. I know that you will do great!


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MARYJEANSL 6/1/2012 6:51PM

  Go for it - you are on your way!

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REGILIEH 6/1/2012 6:28PM

    WTG!!!!

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BEAUTY_WITHIN 6/1/2012 5:44PM

    Great job! Good luck!

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HEARTS116 6/1/2012 5:39PM

    So awesome! Keep it up!

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PCASEY7 6/1/2012 3:45PM

    Good luck with your training program - there's no stopping you now!

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BIRDLSLAURIE 6/1/2012 2:20PM

    Terrific! I am so impressed! emoticon

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CLAYARTIST 6/1/2012 12:48PM

  emoticon

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VOLLEYGIRL77 6/1/2012 10:58AM

    Good luck!! You will do great!

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CAROLZ1967 6/1/2012 9:56AM

    Awesome!! Your blogs have gotten me to search for half marathons near me! I've found one for mid-August (hot though) and as I'm already running, I think I could do it. So I'm researching it and just might start training for it. Thanks for the motivation! :-)

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FARIS71 6/1/2012 9:39AM

    That is so inspiring. I'm a new-ish runner too and it really is amazing! I've done 5k's so far - perhaps I'll stretch my comfort zone.

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AMANDA_C 6/1/2012 8:56AM

    Good luck!

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CLHENDY1 6/1/2012 8:43AM

    You are so incredible and inspiring!! emoticon

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MRSTABER 6/1/2012 7:47AM

    You are so awesome and so inspiring! (Go Purdue! lol)

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NEWTINK 6/1/2012 7:32AM

    Your emoticon You can do this !!

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JANEMARIE77 6/1/2012 6:45AM

    go girl go

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GRAMPIAN 6/1/2012 6:34AM

  Good luck! emoticon

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NCSUE0514 6/1/2012 5:28AM

    Best wishes!

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JENNIFERWEIDEN 6/1/2012 2:59AM

  I can't run because I have degenerative arthritis in the knees, but I feel the exact same way about a good hike, a great sweaty Tae Bo session, a long and fast bike ride with the kids, or any other activity that gets requires lots of energy and in the end gives much more energy back.

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FRANCES-AGAPE 6/1/2012 12:53AM

    emoticon

WOW !
Daily, You are more and MORE
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Only 6 WEEKS had made
all these REMARKABLE
changes in You ?!?!?!?!??!
In practically EVERY area of your life -
and ALL for the BETTER !

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Girl, you never cease to AMAZE !

And INSPIRE !

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on your personal best 5k

And how COOL about the
marathon at your alma mater.
Is that fate or what ?!?!?!?!!!!
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Have a Joyous June

emoticon emoticon

BLESSINGS !

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon


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GODIVADSG 5/31/2012 9:58PM

    You can so do this! Half marathon's are a blast. The journey to me is even better than the race itself. How many times a week will you run with your training program? When I did my first half I followed the marathon rooke program online. I found that site to be helpful with all sorts of hints. It's funny because today on my run I thought that since I have been running seriously (Nov 2008) I have run at least 4 days a week without missing a beat. Running is everything to me. In fact, I refer to my running shoes as my best friends! Run happy! emoticon

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DANILYNNG 5/31/2012 9:48PM

    You've got exactly the right attitude, Leah. You are so going to rock this race!!

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HEALTHY4ME 5/31/2012 8:07PM

    Fantastic!!! AWESOME and with an attitude like that there is no way you will fail. You are destined to run that run!!!
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