Monday, January 11, 2016

Running again on the heels of the worst cold ever!

The family dialogue of last night rattles through my head as I prepare for an early morning run.  My husband Kurt who has been supportive of my running since day one is not so certain about my choice for tomorrow (this morning).  He sees me blowing my nose and taking night time cold medicine and cannot help but doubt my decision for the following morning.  I try to explain to my children my precious 11 and 13 year old about how it has been since last saturday, LAST SATURDAY 8 days since I have run anything.  My oldest sarcastically pretends to understand while my youngest mimics me, she's talking about how it's been a whole year since she has run and doesn't know what she will ever do! My angels.

I ignore them as I have decided is the best mental route to take in these misunderstood circumstances.  3:50am, look at that!  I am naturally awake before 4!  No problem!  I get out of bed, brush my teeth, start my coffee and text my running buddy that all systems are go!  I am fine.  Okay, I am hacking.  That's all right, I will just get rid of it while i'm running.  I learned how to get rid of that stuff while standing in a gale on a ship…I GOT THIS!  After a quick Google of phlegm and what it all means, I post it to my friends on social media, after all they really need this info too, I put on my running gear, and the leg warmers.  I never needed leg warmers before, but they are so cute, and my legs can get cold.  At this point I am trying to ignore my throbbing head and am hoping those two Advil kick in before too late.  Time is ticking, I need to wrap up this blog post and throw on the rest of my gear!  Wish me blessings folks!  Here goes nothing.


You really didn't think I would leave you hanging did you?  So, we got out there and it was much warmer than I expected.  In my mind I was going to need to take it very slow.  I think I was like a Mustang horse who had been tied down for a week because there was no worrying about speed out of the gate.  Half way down the road was a different story.  We hit the steady incline and I was trying hard to ignore my out of control panting.  I could ignore it just fine, however I think it was a little more difficult for my partner to un-hear it.  We walked a couple of times, but the run was not miserable, that's for sure!  When we were approaching the turn around point for 3 miles I contemplated taking it easy and turning there, but decided that I would run as far as I could weather that be 3.5 or 4.  On the way back to complete a 4 mile, we hit the hills that are the gravel road to my house.  My heart rate was approaching max speed and it was time to walk/run those hills.

Afterward I felt like I might have a coughing fit to put all the previous nights to shame, but surprisingly I did not!  But I couldn't even get my gear put away before my nose was running away from me, then I was hot, oh so HOT!!!  I was sweating profusely and could not cool enough, the clothes were being stripped off and I was trying hard to convince myself to stay in the house.  Sweat now pouring from my face, I just sat there.  What happened?  I think I sweat more with a cold, I must.  It is 1:30 and I feel much better.  The hotness went away within a couple of minutes and I was able to move on.  I even got some housework done.

I hope tomorrow I can run again!!!!!  I have a whole week to make up ;)

Friday, June 19, 2015

Is this normal?

The day after the marathon I wrote a really long race recap.  I read it to my family, they said it was too negative and that I would scare people away from running a marathon.  That blog post unfortunately did not make the blog.

Here is the thing.  I did enjoy the race.  There were certain aspects I did not enjoy after mile 18, but as I read other blogs I realize most people don't have anything nice to say after mile 18…sometimes even earlier!  I read about the rest period after a marathon.  The suggestion was no running for 4 to 7 days.  They suggested doing cardio you otherwise would not do, something just for the fun of it.  I, unfortunately, did not even do that.  What I did do was strength training 2 days, and core/stretching 1 day this week.  I cleaned my house like mad and did a whole lot of eating.  Not because I was hungry, but because I was really wanting to indulge.

The thing that is troubling me is that I need to jump right into training for another Marathon in October (Portland Marathon), but before that I got tantalized by the medal for the Flat Half this year.  I run that every year and was going to forego it this year, but the medal was just too pretty!  Here's the problem.  I am not sure how to train with only two weeks in between.  I have my idea that I am going to go with, but am just a little nervous.

I have a five mile run tomorrow.  It has been 6 days since I have hit the streets.  Tomorrow I have five miles to run.  I am nervous about it.  I feel confident that I can do it, but just wonder if it will be easy like the five's I was doing before, or if it will be long and taxing.  ALSO, my client and I have decided to use the Galloway Method for the Marathon, so that's got me a little creeped out.  Taking walk breaks on purpose will be new to me.

I have heard of post marathon let down where people feel like they accomplished something big, then it's like "what next?"  I can only imagine that this is the lunacy that leads to more marathons then to, gulp, ultras.  But what I wonder is if it is normal to feel afraid of getting back into training, because I used to feel that way after running half marathons.


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Dear shoes

Dear Asics Gel Nimbus 17 (white pair),

You have been with me through the miles.   Taking the beating with every pounding step.  Never fighting, only absorbing the abuse of the road for me.  We ran over 300 miles together in preparation for our first marathon.  You were with me on mile 14 for the first time, you were with me when we had to walk and I had to face the fact that running is sometimes partial to walking.  And that I am not the bad mamajama I thought I was.  You talked me into continuing on when the side of the road was looking like a cool bed, or when the Llama looked so snuggly and comfortable lying in the cool grass…you reminded me that you were supporting me, and that I didn't need to stop or hallucinate as we would get our brake soon enough.  You helped me stay out of ditches, and never let me twist my ankle.  You propelled me up hills I otherwise would have been squeamish over.  Remember the time the birds were protecting their nest, and you helped me put my Speed Agility and Quickness skills into effect?  What about that time we saw those chickens doing things that should have been saved for night time?  What a time we had!  You took me in training farther than any other shoe…all the way up to 20 miles, and then a few runs after that.  Then... I began feeling like you weren't supporting me as good as you were at first.  I got nervous.  I bought a new pair of Asics Gel Nimbus 17 (blue pair).  I am sorry.  It didn't take me long (15 miles to be exact) to figure out that even though they supported me, they hadn't been through what we have been through together.    They didn't lace up as easy, they weren't as playable and comfy as you.  I am sorry that I humiliated you by putting you on the left foot and the new shoe on the right foot and paraded you around the driveway to test out which pair I would take on the race.   How could I do that to you? I had to realize the hard way that you had not lost your structure, no, instead you had turned into what a trained shoe should be! I hope you know that you are my true first marathon shoe and it is you who I will take to the race.  I know that you will cary me through just as you have all the other miles, so please forgive me and lets make our last huge memory on Saturday!
Your deeply indebted non injured runner  

Friday, May 29, 2015

About my marathon training

Last week I ran my first 20 miles…ever.
I remember being nervous for it, and really hoping to be able to run the whole thing.  I can't figure out why running the whole thing is so important.  I have deduced it to two reasons.
1. I must think I am some sort of bad mama jama to be able to say I did it, which earns me nothing.  No special prize, no money, and certainly not the right to say I am the only one.
2. I can get it done faster, and it's easier than stopping and starting up again.

Neither of course are true, but number 2 you can train in a way that walk/run/walking will not only work, but will be the same speed and less stress on the joints.  Number 1, well that's just the craziness.

This week on the schedule was 12 miles today and I was up against a 4 am wake up, and a 8 - 9 am client, which meant I wasn't able to start my run until after 9:30, the temp was supposed to get up there too.  Considering that it takes 2 hours to run this thaaaang, I knew I would be running into some heat.

Things I have discovered.
When I first began training for races (mostly half marathons) I would be so careful to eat my gels every hour on the hour.  I would eat 3 of them each time.  I carried water with me and was sure to sip at least every mile.
Since training for anywhere from 1-2 hours on a midweek run, I have come to really dislike the eating during the run portion.  And don't even try to sell me on the GU (liquid snot)
I try to cut my water consumption off at least 1.5 hours before I am going to run, but before that time I try to get well hydrated with 16-32 ounces of water, then take that 1.5 hours to pee it out.  As for eating, I usually shove something in my mouth right before I start just to get rid of the hunger pang.
When I go for my run I fill up my water bag and try to sip every 1 to 1.5 miles.  Toward the end I get very thirsty, especially if it is hot, or if it's a run over 10 miles.  I drink so much and sweat so much out that I need to take electrolyte capsules, about 1 every hour, then one when I get home because I know I will be guzzling the water.

My route:
It doesn't vary much.  The place where I run most has lots of small and some big rolling hills.  I try like heck to avoid the big ones so I am never more than 2.5 to 3 miles away from home.  I do not, necessarily, run in circles either.  I have several out and backs in my course.  That's fancy runner talk for; running from point A to point B, then back to point A.  Sounds like fun doesn't it?

What to eat after a run?
I usually feel like I worked so hard that I shouldn't go off the deep end with my food after a long run.  Like today, I ate lots of red lettuce with about 1 tbsp of OPA ranch (only because that was all there was!), 1 Field roast Chipoltle dog cut up, 2 tbsp nutritional yeast, 2 TBSP hemp hearts (theres that protein everyone's worried about) and raisins.  I know I added a lot of calories to my meal, but I also added ALOT of nutrients.  I am not gonna lie…after my 20 miler last week, it was straight pizza night.

So, tonight I have a well deserved rest coming to me, and possibly some chocolate :)
Thank you for reading.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

An emotional week

And it's only Wednesday.  I don't exactly have the time to be blogging right now so I will make this short.

  Algebra sucks.

Yesterday in class I had to turn off my camera because I couldn't grasp the concept and got lost right from the beginning.  The farther he went into the lesson, the more overwhelmed I became, which led to lots and lots of tears, and every time I raised my hand to ask a question, and he called on me, I choked up.  YEP in front of the whole class.  Embarrassment wasn't my biggest issue at this point.  All I could think about was how I missed the assignment, and quiz, and now I can't even think about grasping week 2's lesson, and there is no way I am going to pass this course...cue more tears.

    Now that I am crying uncontrollably and there is no possible way I can obtain any information, I want to end the session, i.e.; give up.  But I can't because if I do that, then I will lose precious class points.  So there must be a glimmer of hope in there somewhere so I keep listening.  Then I am getting worked up because I am so far behind I cannot possibly understand at this point.  I see all my other classmates get the concept, and feel even more like algebra is my enemy, and my brain simply cannot, will not there is truly a misfire there.

  Eventually I get the nerve to raise my hand again.  The words won't come, no voice without tears GRRR.  (This is like, but not worse than when the Admiral came to our ship and they chose me to take his dinner order because I was best suited for the job and I froze!  I'll leave it up to you to guess if there were tears in that situation. ) The instructor realizes I am having another moment and begins to move on, but WAIT!  The words come!  Halleleua I am able to ask a question!!  He realizes how far back I got lost and works with me through the break.  The reason I did not stop him in the beginning was that he stressed wanting to get through the first part quickly so we could spend more time on the word problems.  So he cleared up some of it for me, and I was able to move on...somewhat.

  I joined a tutoring session after class and got a little more help, then tried to do it totally on my own later and was lost.  Hmmm.

My house is a disaster.
I am doing horrible at algebra
The laundry is folded and in baskets
I need to know the workings of the heart and cardio respiratory system by the end of the week
The weight of my life is on me

I pray
I run
I feel better.

This has been a very emotional week.  I cannot let my emotions take control.  I am casting my eyes on things above, things not of this world.  I will get through this somehow.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

As I am sitting here waiting for Apache to download since it seemingly crashed and this is a second install, I am thinking about the fact that it didn't crash until I was in a position to fix it.  A curious thought for sure.  I am going to say this is part of God helping me succeed.  I think if Oo.o ( would have  crashed right before I wanted to take my final exam, I probably wouldn't be in any position to blog right now due to hyperventilation.

  What have I been up to?

I have been taking it easy so to speak since my half marathon.  I have been trying to watch my diet since I haven't been getting as much exercise in.  Reason being that this was the end of a 5 week module.  I am still not clear on what that all means, but all the classes I take are in 5 week chunks.  The last week is the most crazy because instructors want assignments in early because they have to have grades by the end of the week.

Next week starts the craziest next 14 months of my life (I thought the last 5 weeks were something!). I am going into Anatomy and Physiology, and Algebra.  For those of you who know me, I hope you have dropped everything  and went directly to prayer.  All jokes aside, I do need prayer for this one as I struggle to learn, and when I have to focus on more than just learning, my struggle can become overwhelming, intimidating and stressful.  I just need to remain calm and peaceful.

I haven't run since the half on Sunday (today is Friday) because I wanted to give myself a break from running.  I have gone up the last two nights and done weight training and stair steps.  I do plan to run, but not as long of distances until maybe spring or summer...unless I can't wait that long :).

The half marathon went well.  I originally signed up for it because I did not want my exercising to lapse while I was busy being a student.  Things got pretty intense trying to incorporate running with school.  It seemed everything was spilling into what little family time I already had :(.  I was so excited to get to run with my new friend Christina.  She and I have such a similar running start story, and we go at the same pace.  About 2 weeks before the race her foot was giving her real trouble.  She called me to give me a heads up about it.  I told her to not feel guilty if she had to drop out because I originally signed up for the race by myself, then I told her with that being said, I really want to be able to run this with you.  When we first met we were both nervous about trying to run with anyone because we had both done our training alone.  After a few months of running and a half marathon under our belt we felt confident enough that we could run together and truly enjoy it.

 She called me 2 days before the race and regretfully informed me that she would not be able to run :(.  This made me sad, for Christina, and for myself.  I didn't want to be selfish, but I couldn't help feeling that way.  When I got to the race Christina was there for support!  She was sad she couldn't be a part of it...I could tell.  I was sad but was trying to act like I wasn't so she wouldn't have one more thing to feel bad about.  Never kick a person when they are down.

  Before I seen Christina I went over to the start sign to take my picture in front of it, there were groups of women taking photos of each other, a couple of them asked me to take their picture.  I didn't mind, but was really wishing I had someone to take a picture with.  See, as much as a runner enjoys a good race, and may spend the majority of the race not talking, if you have no one there to be with can be a lonely very big place.  I asked this lady to take my picture and she did.

This is about an hour before the race

I had everything I needed to start, I had my lucky socks, my lanyard Emily bought and I wore on my first half, and my water bag.  I will have you know that a long sleeve shirt was not an appropriate choice for this race.  It was very humid and got rather warm during the race.  I will say though that the weather was perfect for running conditions.

Some Uh Oh! moments:
When I had turned in my bag, and was strapping everything on, I realized I didn't have my arm band for my phone, NOR did I have my heart rate monitor that I was so curious about wearing.  I went back to the bag check, and got my HRM, but my arm band was no where to be seen.  I was rather dismayed.  Then I heard the lady yelling to me, she took the time to look around the area and seen that I had dropped it by the bench!  The volunteers at this race were so kind!

What I remember about the race:
Here is a view of the Columbia as I was running by, also we passed under the I-5 Washington/Oregon Bridge which was pretty cool.  There is a route around Portland where one can run the bridges, I would like to do that one day...when I get over my fear of Portland. 
This is the view of the river

I met these really cool people from "Team Joleen", apparently Joleen was a big inspiration for this race. (They said I could be on their team :))

I remember running through Fort Vancouver, and near Pearson Air Field.  There are some pretty sweet things to look at, and the fall scenery was incredible!  I was in a lot of pain to fully enjoy it though.  All I could do was look for the finish line...not what I wanted to be thinking/doing.

I remember running past the Fred Meyers that can be seen off Hwy 14 just before it hits I-5 and knowing I only had a couple more miles to go, wondering how I was going to make it.  Then getting behind these three very fit looking ladies, who seemed to run with such ease...they were pissing me off.

I remember running up this demanding hill and raising my hands in victory when I conquered it (hoping I didn't look like a jerk) It was a moment for really only me to see.  I do that a lot when I am running alone. don't judge.

I was trying to capture the look and the feeling (moment) of what it feels like to be in the midst of a half Marathon...I want to say this is a little more than half way.

I remember seeing sweat soaked bodies, and one lady having removable arm sleeves, thinking to myself how those would have been removed ages ago if I were wearing them!  And wishing I wouldn't be too embarrassed to run in my sports bra...but even if I wasn't, there were a lot of little kids on that route...wouldn't want to scare anyone ;)

I remember seeing the finish line and just going all out sprint to get the best possible time, and then seeing the man I love the most at the finish, just like he said he would be <3.

I remember putting my foot up to take off my timing chip and having to lean on the lady helping me so I wouldn't fall from exhaustion.

I remember the paramedic asking me if I was okay when I went to get up from the curb.

I remember the tough times, and I remember the feeling of accomplishment.

Thank you guys for reading my race recap, and life story.  Hopefully the next time I talk to you, I will know a little something about Anatomy and Physiology...and Algebra!!!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Assignment, offense, and running talk

  An assignment leads to an offense...

  I am going to start off with the thing that is bothering me most.  We had an assignment to observe a group fitness class.  I went to the gym and observed a circuit training class.  I told the instructor why I was there and what I was doing.  She was so kind, and told me she would like for me to take her class. I explained that I was not taking it that day because I had an 11 mile run the next day, and really needed my rest.  She cringed when I said 11 mile run, and looked repulsed at the thought (that should have been my first clue) but I just brushed it off as I realize a lot of people cringe at the thought of running that distance, heck even I used to.  I don't cringe anymore, but I will tell you it takes a certain amount of discipline and "psyching up" to get myself through it.  I sat and observed the class, then went on my merry way to do the rest of my reading and studying for school.

  While I was writing my paper from the observance it had occurred to me that I never asked what her certification was, and I knew that if I didn't include that information my paper would be incomplete.  I went back to the gym several hours later and none of the people from the morning were there.  I found the instructors business card labeled "Personal Trainer".  When I called her to ask about her certification, we were talking, and she was wanting me to take her class, and I informed her that once this half marathon was over I was going to back off of the running a bit so I could concentrate on strength and such and that I would love to take her class.  Then she says to me "you know...running makes your butt small"  I say, "well, I have had a big butt for all my life" and before I could get anymore words out she interrupts and says, "No, I mean flat, a flat butt that has no form."

  Now I know no woman wants a flat but, I get that, but I am of the firm belief that my backside is not now, nor has EVER been in danger of going "flat".   I am not so much upset about the fact that she told me my body was going to change in an undesirable way from running as I am that a "Personal Trainer" would condemn a healthy habit that I have worked so hard to establish.  She is supposed to be encouraging cardiovascular exercise, and human movement in general!  I will not hold a grudge and I especially know that being offended is a sin(1).  WHAT?? you say?  BELIEVE IT.  Why?  Because when we are offended we often get tripped up, and led to anger, resentment, and hate (that's sinning). I don't want to sin because I want to please God, and live my life as a light.  Rather than going through all that, I will just let it go, and know my boundaries with this woman.  I will also chose to focus on her positive attitude and good qualities.  I am almost certain that when she hung up the phone she soon realized the blunder she had made.

  An 11 mile run...

  Did  you know that it is only okay to type a numerical character if the number is 10 or higher?  How cool is it that I have run so far that I can use numerical characters?  ha ha, I am just full of information.  Oh just wait, now that I am fully enveloped in studying, cramming all sorts of information into my brain, I will probably be sighting more little known facts...bear with me :).

  Saturday morning (yesterday) while I was preparing for my run, my Haley asked me how far I was running, and I told her, then she said "But won't you run out of breath?".  I explained to her that I have learned to control my breathing, and that my body was conditioned to do this type of thing.  But friends, that little question she asked carried me through my run.  When my hips and back began to ache, and when I began to question my own endurance, and wondered where my energy had gone, I remembered that I was conditioned, and out of the depths of my imagination. "The body is stronger than the mind"(2),  there was a place that I could find the energy, the endurance.  I believe God gives me strength, and I also believe he gives me little nuggets of encouragement to reflect on for those moments of doubt.

More of my take on running in general

  When running long distances I really want to find the flattest run possible.  Sorry folks, I like to run, I never said I was into self torture.  You have read in the past of my dealings with hills, and if you haven't it won't take long to fill you in...I have tried them, I run them when I have to, and avoid them when I can.  Avoiding hills feels a slightly like sneaking a candy bar into the middle of a salad though.  I have been hearing about the dangers of running on cement.  Most of the time I don't run on cement as I run the roads around my house.
The pros of running by my house...I am out in the country so there are no lights.  I don't have to deal with lots of cars and their exhaust.

The cons...hills, and the danger of being alone while running.

 Which reminds me...I need to get hand held pepper spray.  While I was on my last 3 mile run I passed by a man on the other side of the road.  Of course every story I have ever heard about runners being taken over flashes through my head, and as I size this man up, a terrifying thought hits me "I couldn't take this guy if I needed to."  It is very unfortunate and angering to think that  just because I am weaker that it would be "okay" to do with me as you please.  I guess in a way it's like leaving a million dollars in your car and not bothering to lock the doors, so I guess I will be locking my doors with pepper spray.  These are real thoughts and fears I face when going out alone.

  Rest day...

So today I will enjoy a rest, take the kids to a birthday party, and then begin it all over again next week.  My Half Marathon is on October 14th.  I am supposed to run 12 miles next saturday.  I am still debating on weather I want to run that long the week before the Half.  I don't want to be burnt out and dread the Half.

  Forgive me...

for the long blog post, but it has been so long since I have written a quality post, and who knows how long it will be before I can write another...if this even is one ha ha.

I learned that if I am going to quote people, or insert things I have learned, I need to site where I got the here it is. Numbers are behind the quote or reference in the paragraphs above.

1. Strongs Concordance: Offend. Greek 4624: To entrap. i.e. trip up (figuratively, stumble (transitively) or entice to sin, apostasy or displeasure):--(make to) offend.

2. Chris Powell on Extreme Makeover Weight loss edition.