Friday, May 27, 2011

Clearing out the Cobwebs!

Finally, after making the mental choice to get back into an active lifestyle on Monday, Wednesday night I knocked out my first run in awhile.  It was kinda random how it came about - I typically schedule all my runs, along with everything else in my life, then know they're coming and look forward to them.  This run, however, seemed to come out of nowhere. 

Wednesday night, I went to an evening meeting for Girls on the Run - an amazing running/self-esteem program for 3-5th grade girls.  I'm going into the second year of bringing this program to my school and I LOVE it!  It's just an amazing thing for me to see girls I know well completely transformed over 10 weeks.  And, I get to support them as I run the season-ending 5K with them!  This is really fun since most of them (and their parents) have no idea I'm a runner and it is a fun point of conversation from then on :)

Anywho, I got home and my husband was out with friends, and I was so pumped up after the meeting that I figured, why not go for a run?  It was late, but not dark yet and it had finally stopped raining for a short time.  Even as I ran upstairs to get changed to get out there and I found a huge pile of dog crap in the hallway, I wasn't discouraged.  

**I should note that one of my dogs is deathly afraid of thunderstorms.  Like shake like a baby the entire time it storms.  It had been storming all day and he was doing okay with my husband home with him.  There was about a 20 min overlap from my husband leaving and me getting home that Dexter just couldn't handle.  He's not a bad dog, just a big scaredy cat.  So he poops in the house.  Fun.**

So, cleaned up that mess and got out there.  It was quite possibly the best run of my life.  Just to get out there on my own accord, wanting it so bad, not knowing where or how far I would go, totally set me free.  I'm completely type A and plan everything so to do this so sporadically was exhilarating (sure sounds like I need more excitement in my life, right?!)

I hadn't run in a couple weeks, so getting out there was nice.  I thought I'd be sore and awkward - can one forget how to run??!!  Yes, I thought this might happen.  But, it was a great run and I loved every second of it.  Now, it was only 3 miles, but I was humbled because I remember when 3 miles was so far out of the realm of my capabilities that it was what I had worked for for months. 

I'm looking forward to more great runs, more scheduled runs, and feeling myself again :)

Monday, May 23, 2011

I'm back!

Two weekends ago, my husband and I had an amazing long weekend in DC with his brother and his new fiancee.  I had never been there before and we were really looking forward to spending time with family.  It was amazing - we got to see all the sights and catch up with old friends.

I came back to work and was trying to catch up all week!  It's amazing how two days out of the office takes forever to make up!  I'm just out of practice - the only days I've ever taken off in the 5 years I've been in my current job were for my wedding, honeymoon and this trip.  I just really love my job and don't want to take time off!

My husband stood up in his first wedding this past Friday which was fun.  It was friends from high school, so it was fun to catch up with everyone.  The craziness of a Friday wedding when you have to work took its toll on me, but it's nice to get up on Saturday morning and still have two weekend days to yourself.

So, to the real reason of my post: I haven't worked out (ran or P90X) in just about two weeks.  I fell of the wagon.  I have a million excuses for it, but I'm just going to suck it up, admit that I didn't make the time and jump back on the wagon!  

The good news is that I actually miss running and working out - I truly want to do it for myself and my well-being, which is amazing!  So, here I am, jumping back into it and excited to do so!  Thanks for bearing with me :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Keeping Up and Going on Vacation

I've been keeping up with P90X and still loving it.  I'm currently on week 6 and feel really good about it.  I'm way more coordinated with the workouts and used to the schedule, so I look forward to doing it just about every day.  

The one thing that confuses me is that I'm gaining weight.  I know it's not uncommon when people start P90X, but I'm not sure that's what I want.  The number on the scale is much higher than normal, up about 6lbs from when I started.  I guess I can chalk it up to 'muscle weighs more' but I feel that's usually bologna to make someone feel better. 

People at school are mentioning that I look like I'm losing weight and a mom asked me today if I'm still running, cause I look like it, but I'm gaining!  wtf?  I'm so confused.  I don't plan on stopping P90X by any means, but I would like to be down about 15lbs.  

My clothes are fitting differently, but not necessarily looser all over.  It's just weird.  I'm still running and enjoying running when I want to for as long as I want to, instead of following a training plan right now.  I'm looking forward to meeting Rebecca in the morning for a run :)

I'm heading to DC for a long weekend with my husband to visit his brother and newly-engaged fiance!  I'm so excited!!  I've been doubling up on workouts this week so that I can still be on track when we get back on Sunday.  It's going to be a lot of fun and I'm packing running clothes just-in-case.   

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Great 5K and Virtual Marathon Results

Yesterday I went to the Food Allergy 5K in Dearborn, MI.  It was a small race I registered for with my sister and was planning on walking it with her.  However, her foot was bothering her all week, reducing her to limping all day, so she bowed out Friday night.  

I took this as a perfect opportunity to enjoy this new-to-me race and have a good time out there.  It was very small but organized and a flat, fast route.  The weather couldn't have been better and I had a great race - a 2nd place PR for me.  I know nobody really keeps track of that, but I do. 

This race felt great to me and I finished in 30:40 (my PR is 29:59 in Dec 09)!  I loved every second of it and felt myself pushing forward at a couple of times when I would have slowed down, so that was nice.

I signed up for this virtual race awhile ago, thinking that with my half on April 30th, it'd be no problem to finish the 26.2 miles in the two weeks leading up to it.  The only stipulation is that you have to run at least 1K of the race on May 1st.  I enjoyed this part, as it got me out the door for some recovery miles the day after my third half marathon.  I'd never done that before and I enjoyed it - I think it helped my legs recover faster.  

This virtual marathon was a fun way to keep track even more detailed of my training and see what time I could get with a 'broken up' marathon.

I ran it in 5 spurts:
April 18th      3.12 miles in 35:23
April 22nd     4.4 miles   in 44:00 with Rebecca!
April 25th      2.0 miles   in 22.33 slow miles with my dogs
April 30th     13.1 miles  in 2:34:32 Let's Move Half Marathon
May 1st        3.58 miles  in 42:24
Total:            26.2 miles in 4:58:52 a PR for me!!

This was fun and I'm looking forward to beating this marathon PR in the next few years!  I think it'll be my best time for awhile now.  My first marathon is this October, so we'll see what happens!

Thanks Neil for the fun race idea!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I'm back at it and feeling great!

Dear Blogland,

You are all FANTASTIC and just what I needed to get out of my funk after last week's half marathon that didn't go as planned.  With all of your amazing support, I'm over it, learned from it, and am ready to rock and roll!

Thanks for being you: for getting me out there at the beginning and going through these new experiences with me and helping me through.  You're the best!

Con mucho amor,

I feel great!  I can't believe I sulked that hard after last week's race, but I'm over it and feel myself again.  I had heard about bad training runs, but never bad races and now that I've had one, I'm thrilled it's over and ready to move on.

Thanks for all of your support, but a special thanks to a few:

LB thanks for helping me realize that support isn't all it's cracked up to be.  I thought about your old post on support a lot over the past few days.  Thanks also for helping me realize that this race has nothing to do with my future (first) marathon; that part was crucial for me. 

Neil really helped me think about why I first started running and yes, it was 100% just for me and I'm already back in that mind set.  I love to run, I look forward to running and I feel great afterward.  It's totally selfish and I'm completely okay with that.

Rebecca was amazing in that she's been there and was able to talk me through the strange feelings I had about everything.  AND got me back out there yesterday and confirmed that I do love to run :)  

Can't wait for our weekly runs together - it makes the world of difference!

And Jeff your words hit home hard and were just what I needed to hear.  Yes, I am a runner and as great as it feels to have you tell me this, it feels better coming out of my mouth naturally :)  You were a big part of me getting out there and being proud of my running at the beginning  - your blog was the first I had ever read and really motivated and validated me in my running.  So thanks for the support!!

Everyone has been so fabulous and I'm so thankful that I randomly stumbled into the running blog world just a few months ago.

I'm actually heading out the door soon for a fun 5K!  I'm so excited to get back out there and ready to tell the world I'm a RUNNER!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Let's Move Half Marathon Race Review

So, I'm still not sure how I feel about Saturday's race but here's my best attempt at breaking it down.  

  • The weather was beautiful - sunny, not too hot, capris and tank top weather - perfect!
  • The race was .4 miles from my parent's house - no wasted time parking in the morning :)
  • It was in my home town and I talked my parents, mother-in-law, sister and niece into participating in the smaller races.
  • It was a flat race.
  • My favorite restaurant was at the finish line - yum chili cheese fries :)

  • The water stations were out of cups until mile 6 or so.  Soooo Thirsty.
  • There was minimal crowd support.  minimal.  like no one along the course unless you count the people standing at the water stations without cups.
  • There was no water near the GU stop.  Yuck. 
  • Of the few spectators there were (read: sheriff dept at cross streets), they were silent and didn't cheer you on or even acknowledge that you were there.
  • The finish line was so empty - granted, I finished after 2:30, but still - maybe 50 ppl cheering you in.
  • The volunteers at the finish line were just standing there talking with each other.  I had to ask for a medal even though there were 5 of them standing there with them in their hands.  I had to grab a space blanket from the pile that was all folded up and hard to get while all the volunteers stood there and completely ignored me.  There was bottled water, but no food.  I was pissed.  
  • Race photos blew.  They only had a photographer at the end.  The website is a wedding photographer.  Get your shit together and hire a race photographer.  ok now I'm being a brat.

My time
I'm thoroughly disappointed in my finishing time: 2:34:32.  I was really looking forward to beating my last time of 2:33:53 from the Grosse Ile Half on March 20th.  The conditions were perfect - weather, locale, flat, family there to cheer me in.  I really wanted sub 2:30.

I think I put too much pressure on this race and assumed it would go so great without being mentally prepared.  The first 6 miles felt great - I was floating on air and didn't seem like I was pushing it too hard or went out too fast.  I was in front of the 2:30 pacer and felt wonderful.  However, after the lack of agua and the incredibly thinning group of racers, I was fading fast after that.  The 2:30 pacer creeped up behind me around mile 7, ran with me for awhile and then took off after the mile 8 marker.  

I didn't feel like I was really slowing down that bad or lagging, but I got to the point that I couldn't come up with anything positive in my mind.  By mile 9, there was no one around me running and I was fading fast in my head.  Thoughts like "what the hell am I doing here?", "I'm not a runner", "how the hell do you think you can run a full in October, when you can't even get through a half", "I'm going to let everyone down when I don't finish this", and so on and so on.  It sucked.  I had placed this race on a pedestal and it came tumbling down. 

When I turned the last corner to the finish line, I was so excited to see the huge chute of people cheering the runners in like in every other race.  This was not the case - a disappointing 50 ppl maybe.  I saw my mom right away and that was so exciting.  My sisters and my niece were spotted just after that and had home-made signs in their hands!  That part was awesome!!

Even with this, I was still mad that the finish line was so bare and then I snapped at my niece cause I was pissed with my time.  I did apologize later, but still.  

I think this is my huge problem:
I've always been envious of runners who have a huge support crew cheering them on at many places of the race and meeting them afterward.  I've never had that before and was so excited to have it this time.  Overall, I was disappointed at the people I invited that didn't show and then was annoyed with the ones that did come support me.  I think my problem is that they all knew nothing about running and it annoyed me.  I don't know how to explain it.  

Perhaps I'm so salty about the whole day since running has always been 'my' thing.  me.  by myself.  I go to races solo, run solo, walk back to my car solo and drive home solo.  I blog about it, but that's it.  I don't talk to any human being about them cause I don't have anyone in my life that gets it.  So, that's my race routine.  

I thought it would be great to have family there, but in reality, I don't think I'll do it again. This is where I feel really bad.  Does this make me a bad person?  They just don't get it.  My sister thinks I'm a runner-snob now and I truly hope that's not the case - but it's how I currently feel.  

This whole weekend still leaved me with a bad taste in my mouth and I still can't pin point why.  I mean, I ran 13.2 miles (the course was long), have no pain and got some sun in the process, I should be happy about this accomplishment and I'm really not at all.  
I'm kinda hoping I snap out of this soon.  It already feels good just to get it out.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Unsure about this half...

Short update...

I ran the half in my hometown this weekend and two days later I'm still not sure how I feel about it.  Depends on the moment - I either LOVED it or HATED it - but I'm leaning more toward hating it and I feel really bad about that.  

I still feel so weird about it that I have to process this more before I put it out there.  Hmmm......

On a side note, I've been out of blog-land since Thursday and feel so left out; I'm enjoying catching up with everyone.