Monday, October 15, 2012

My humble correction....

Did you ever think you were better than you really are?  That's what happened to me yesterday.   I felt SO GOOD that I was back in the running game and that I ran 5 miles - without stopping - that I forgot all that I had accomplished and then let go of.

My race time yesterday was not a PR.  It wasn't even close.  That number above - 49:13 - that's it.  That was December of last year.  Ten months later - on a course that I'm pretty sure was easier than the holiday run - I ran slower. 

That's what happens when you get complacent.  When you question where you want to go.  I let go of running this summer.  Not completely - but just about.  I stopped my long runs and barely got in the short ones.  I wasn't sure it was for me.  I didn't think I was enjoying it the way all other runners seem to.

If you ask me if I like running - I generally say not really - what I love is the sense of accomplishment I get from it.  Well.....when I'm running slower now than I was almost a year ago - where's the accomplishment? 

Don't get me wrong - I'm not giving up.  I'm fired up.  I WANT to get better, faster - LEANER. 

This was just the kick in the arse I needed. 


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pon de Replay - Run, Run, Run, Run - Everybody Run, Run

That was the song on my IPhone as I crossed the finish line today.  LOVE that song. 

I'm not a very good blogger.  Seriously - I know that an integral part of a blog is photos - and that's just not my thing.  Partially because I go to races alone and to stand there and take photos of myself without feeling like a nut job is not an easy thing.  That said - here's my race photo from today.  As you can tell - I'm thrilled.

I ran in my first race in 5 months today.  With 300+ of my closest friends.  It was a 5 miler and I honestly wasn't sure I would be able to do it.  Well - I knew I could do it - I just wasn't sure I could do it without walking more than I ran.

It felt good.  It felt GREAT.  My time was 51.05.  For me that's a good time.  No stopping.  I'm pretty sure it's a PR.  (I haven't gone back to check yet) 

I ran across the Hudson River (on a bridge of course as I certainly don't walk or run on water). It was awesome.  Seriously - a great view and a perfect time of year.  The weather was good - although maybe a little warm.  (I'm getting old and I hate the heat now!)  A good blogger would have taken a picture - but that would have required stopping and I wasn't willing to do that. 

If feels really good to be back in the "game".  I've got two more 5 mile races before the end of the year and I can't wait to see if I can beat my times from last year!  I'm starting to think 1/2 marathon again.  Big question is which one. 

What did you do this weekend?

Monday, October 8, 2012

I have THAT husband - the one that shouldn't be on the sidelines.....

I want to start by saying this post is NOT running related.  I did run this weekend - and it felt great - and honestly - I NEED to get a run in today - if for nothing else but to get rid of the angst I still have over what happened yesterday.

For those of you that are parents, or have had an over zealous parent, or quite frankly - just been to a child's sporting event - you can relate.

My husband - who I love with all my heart - should NOT be allowed at my son's soccer games.  He just can't get it in his head that the 11 year olds running around on the field are not paid professionals.  His nonsense has been going on since our son was 8. 

Bragging mom that I am - I will openingly admit that my son is a pretty gifted athlete.  He does well.  Unfortunately - this makes it a lot harder for him where his dad is concerned.  He's never supposed to have a bad day.  EVER.  We've battled about this for years now- I've banned him from games, we've taken seperate cars, and I've even resorted to pleading with my son to try, try, try as hard as he can so that we don't have to put up with his Dad's crap afterwards.  (yup- pathetic....)

Anyways....yesterday we reached a culmination.  There was no yelling involved and honestly - our son wasn't even the victim.  My husband made a disparaging comment to me about another kid on the team.  The problem was - his mom was standing right behind him when he said it.  IT hit the fan.  I'm still mortified over the whole thing.  Was my husband out of line?!  ABSOLUTELY!!!  But there's a bigger picture here.  WE ALL DO IT.  At least most of us do.   

Not only do we do it - but some of us (and this is one thing I DO NOT allow) talk about other players in front of our kids.  I drive a car pool to soccer and I can't tell you the things I've heard some of the other children say about players on their own team.  AND - you can clearly tell when it's something that they heard one of their parents say. 

There's a huge lesson to be learned in all of this - and quite frankly- its not just for my husband.  Children's sports have gotten way out of control.  As parents - we've forgotten that these are just kids.  We've forgotten that there should be boundaries.  I've listened to many a parent talk about how their child deserves more playing time than other children. I've listened to many a child talk about one of their teammates in a negative way and - for the record - when they are in my car they get a lecture from me on how it's the wrong thing to do.

Why do we do this?  Why do we allow it?  What are we teaching our children? 

I'm implementing a no soccer talk in our house for awhile.  We need a break.  The chances of my son becoming a professional soccer player are slim - so why do we spend so much time obsessing over it? 

I want my child to grow up to be a kind hearted soul.  To try his hardest and to learn from his mistakes.  I can only hope his father has. 

As a side note- what's my husband doing right now?  He's teaching our daughter how to ride her bike without her training wheels.   One of the many good things he does for our children. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

I'm ba - ack!!

I took a huge sabbatical from blogging – and I’m sorry about that.  I just wasn’t sure if it was the right thing for me or not. 

I will say – I have missed the running/blogging community.  My running has slacked of significantly and I blame myself for that.  I guess I needed a break.

It’s depressing to realize that 6 months ago I was able to run 13.1 miles and today – I’m pushing myself to run 5. 

That said – I am officially back in the shoes!  I’ve signed myself up for several races over the next few months and I’m looking forward to it.  One of those being the Cupcake Classic Virtual Run - hosted by  Run with Jess - if you haven't signed up for it - you should!  She's got awesome prizes and is a great motivator!  

I've missed running - A LOT. Don't get me wrong - I've run over the past few months - but not as much as I was.  I miss the way running makes me feel.  Physically and mentally.  I'd say it's hard to explain - but I know you all get it! 

I hope everyone is doing well and I am looking forward to getting caught up on all of your blogs!!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

My May Motivation

I’m running faster.  I know I am.  My race times may not show it – but I feel myself getting faster.  I’m currently one of those people that run essentially the same pace per mile regardless of it being a 5k, 10k or half marathon. 

I’m working on changing that. 

Now that my half marathon is behind me – I plan on taking time this month to enjoy running again.  To run because I want to -  not because my schedule dictates that I run a certain number of miles on a specific day.   Truth be told – I still have a schedule.  It’s just a  much gentler, nicer one.  My long run is going to top out at 6 miles this month.  My training runs during the week – between 3 and 4. 

I like the idea.  Going out and running for a half hour – forty five minutes because I want to is something I can get behind. 

Back to my speed.  My training runs these past two weeks have definitely been faster.  I’m pushing myself.  I feel it every night when I am trying to sleep and my legs are aching.  I know I’ve forced them to give me more than they are used to. 

I have one race on the calendar for the month – and that’s a 10k.  I’ve only run one other 10k and that was back in October.  It’ll be interesting to see if my pace improves this time around.  I plan on it – I just don’t want to overshoot my goal. 

That’s always my dilemma – do I aim high and then possibly feel disappointed in my results or do I go conservative and then feel “extra motivated” when I surpass my expectations? 

How do you determine what your goal is for a race? 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012 half marathon recap....

Before I move officially move into May (and I promise to be a better blogger this month) I want to be sure I recap my FIRST half marathon. 

I learned a lot about myself on this journey.  This is the first "quest" I've been on that I have stuck with based on sheer determination.  I have been running - since June of last year - 3, 4, 5 days+ a week.  I haven't done anything that consistently for at least 11 years.  (which is how old my son is about to turn!)

Two days before my race - my " running partner" - who has not trained with me in 6 months but had committed to run the half bailed on me.  I can't say that I was surprised but I was forced to really look inside myself. 

The biggest accomplishment of my life I was going to do alone.  I think that's my biggest takeaway from this.  Don't get me wrong - I am proud that I ran those 13.1 miles (at least most of them) but I am really PROUD that I made a decision to go - by myself  - and run for me. 

The race for the More Magazine + Fitness All Women's Half Marathon that took place in Central Park on April 15th.  The race started at 8am and since I live about 90 minutes outside of the city I needed to go in the night before. 

After playing tag with my husband (literally dropping our kids off at his office since he had to work that day) I took the train into Grand Central.  I proudly got my metro card and took the subway downtown to the expo.  Because at that point I was having (and still may be) a love / hate relationship with running I wasn't really into it.  I didn't want to buy more running gear if I was going to lay off running for awhile. 

Subway back up to my hotel and I spent the night by myself.  REALLY SUCKED to be in the city alone.  (and in bed by 9pm!)  Felt like a total waste of money and the experience.  I missed my husband and if we weren't dogsitting for our neighbors I probably would have pushed him to join me. 

Anyways....the weather on race day was really nice.  ALMOST too nice.  The corrals were very clearly marked and the porto potty lines weren't too crazy.  As the race kicked off it started to rain but it wasn't cold so I considered that to be a good thing.   The sun coming out in all its glory about half way through made it HOT. 

I was surprised by all of the walkers.  Right from the beginning there were walkers.  I'm a strict rule follower so I found this kind of annoying.  Walkers were supposed to start in the back. I'm slow - but I wasn't in the walking corral.  :-)

There were just under 8k runners.  We were on top of each other.  A lot of weaving in and out.  This didn't really bother me- I'm so used to running alone that to be in with such a tight group of people was a new experience for me. 

After the first mile I felt pretty good.  (that first mile I always have to push myself through - as crazy as that sounds) Until mile 7.5 I ran at a steady pace - around 10:40 per mile.  

Central Park is a lot of rolling hills with one mother of a hill on the Upper East.  The first time I stopped to walk was at mile 7.5 and I only walked for less than a minute- just to "regroup". 

At mile 10 I hit a wall.  My legs were lead.  The sides of my hips hurt, it was hot and I was TIRED.  I had to push myself to run.  I think I stopped 3 times in the last 3 miles!! 

My end time was 2:23:51.  Just under an 11 minute mile pace which was my goal.  Truth be told - I wanted to be sure I came in under 2:30 and I really wanted 2:15.  2:15 didn't happen - but I was pretty happy with myself. 

Overall it was a great experience and it taught me that for my next one (because I'm sure there will be a next one) I can do it.  Nothing to fear. 

I am healthy, I have trained for this - I am strong.  A good mantra - I think I'll keep it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

I am HEALTHY, I have TRAINED FOR THIS, I am STRONG.....where I've been. (I'll try and keep this short!)

Hello Everyone.  I am so sorry it has been so long since I've "blogged".  I've got a myriad of excuses for why I haven't. 

First and foremost - I haven't felt like it.  I've thought about it a lot- I just couldn't work up the energy to do so. 

I travel a LOT for my job and this past month has been brutal.  I feel like I've barely been home (as I currently sit in a hotel lobby) and I'm getting ready to leave again for another week long trip next week.  (I still haven't told my kids yet about this one!)   Traveling curtails blogging for me (and running). 

As you may or may not recall - I also have been having issues with an on again - off again - cough.  This reached it's "prime" about 3 weeks ago.  I ended up have a few trips to the doctor, a chest X-Ray and now have an inhaler I keep with me.  I guess I have sports induced asthma. 

Additionally - the chest X-Ray showed up something funky with my heart.  I ended up heading back to the cardiologist - who essentially thinks I'm FINE.  However, I need to have a stress test - stay tuned as that's coming up in a week and a half. 

So...all of this has sort of thrown me into a funk.  A bit of a "running is killing me, my job is making me crazy, and yet I still can't seem to lose the weight I want funk".

On for the good news.  My first half marathon is officially behind me.  The More Fitness Magazine All Women's Half Marathon was this past Sunday - April 15th.  (I got the go ahead from my cardiologist on Wednesday that I could run it).  All of these medical issues derailed my training a bit - so I went into it feeling a bit under confident.  I had to keep telling myself I could walk if I needed to.  I also kept telling myself it may be my only marathon so I wanted to give it my best shot.  That's where my new mantra kicked in.

I am healthy, I have trained for this, I am strong.   I told myself this repeatedly on Sunday. 

I'll do a full half marathon report soon (as I want to document this for myself as well - as I'm not certain I have any readers left!). 

For those of you whose virtual runs I missed this past month - I'm sorry - life just got in the way. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Look what showed up today? A sign of SPRING!

I NEVER thought I'd be happy to see this return.   The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and the Port A Potty has arrived!   (This happens to be on my running loop so it's come in handy at times!)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Facing your fear

For those of you that are Biggest Loser fans - you know that the premise of last night's episode was to "face your fear".  At the time I didn't really give much thought to it.

Today as I was digging for motivation - I started to think about my upcoming half marathon.  About the fact that I will be running it "alone" .  (you know - with 10k other runners!)  and how the course map indicates that there are 4 major hills.  About the fact that I ran 10 miles this past weekend and came in almost last .....about the fact that I train and run races without a running partner....this list goes on.  My mind has a tendency to go into overdrive sometimes. some point I made the connection to my thoughts today and last night's BL. I realized that I am facing a personal fear each time I show up at the starting line.  Nobody's driving me there.  I'm making myself go - nerves and all - and doing the best I can.  Hell - nobody would even know if I didn't go.  (I did debate last weekend going for breakfast instead of the race! - who would know? )

I'm not the girl that goes alone to the movies.  I'd rather stay home.  I enjoy my peace and solitude at times - but I certainly don't go "public" in my quest for alone time.  During last weekend's race there were 2 packs out in front - and then the remaining runners were single runners.  Nothing to push you along except the quest for reaching the finish line. 

I'm not sure why I keep running. Maybe I would have quit by now if I hadn't signed up for this stupid half in April.   I don't know.  I'm certain I wouldn't be out running 10 miles on a Sunday morning.  At least not ALONE.  (sorry to whine so much about the whole running alone thing :-)

 I run because I take pride in my accomplishment - and yet it so many times makes me feel inadequate.  I could certainly run faster, run longer, run more....but....I get up each day, I get on the treadmill or head for the hills (literally) outside my front door....and I run. 

What makes you run?  What makes you face your fear?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Two for Tuesday...Do I need to change my name?

I'm sorry I haven't been around for a few has been a very hectic week. 

I thought I'd get in a quick update.

1.  My 10 mile race was this past weekend.  I'm proud - I finished it and maintained essentially my same pace per mile as I did for my 5 mile race.  (10:44)  I'm sure that's because the pace isn't super fast - but at least I'm consistent!!  I only ended up walking for about 4 minutes.  On mile 7.5 they looped us back up a HUGE hill for the second time.  I called "uncle" half way up and walked.  Luckily - there is a downhill to the story so I made up some time with that. 

What was enlightening to me was the fact that there aren't many "fun runners" that come out for 10 mile races.  I'm learning that once you get out of the 5K range - most runners are "fit and fast". 

What that means for me - I'm moving from the Middle of the Pack to the Back of the Pack....YIKES!! Do I need to change the name of my blog?

This is at approximately mile 9 - at least I'm not limping!

2.  My daughter turned 6 this past weekend.  A very exciting day for her.  Unfortunately - she managed to fall and hurt herself so I'm home today - getting ready to take her to the orthopedist.  Let's keep our fingers crossed that its just a sprain!  What's one more day of kindergarten that's missed, right?  She's missed more time this year than her brother has in 6 years!  UGH. 

I hope everyone is having a great week!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Feeling a bit nervous....10 mile race on Sunday

I've got a 10 mile race on Sunday.  I signed up for it because it fits nicely into my half marathon training plan.  At least it did until my training took a two week hiatus a few weeks ago. 

I've got my head back in the game and I've been doing my long runs for the past two weeks - but I'm STILL sore from my 9 miler on Sunday.  NOT a good sign.  Of course, I have yet to give myself a true rest day.  Starting tomorrow I won't be running until Sunday. 

I went out today to get in 4.  I ended up getting in 2 and I walked for close to a half a mile.  My legs are fatigued. 

I think compression pants might work better if I actually RAN in them! 

Now it's in my head.  Doubt.  Uncertainty. 

Bottom line is - I'm running no matter what.  The question is - how fast and will I completely make a fool of myself.  (why didn't I sign up for the 5 miler!?)

I need to get this race behind me - and I need to get some confidence from it.  The half is 4 weeks away.  Essentially 3 more training weeks. 

I'm getting in my own way at this point.  As SUAR says - I need to stop complaining - stop worrying - and just SHUT UP and RUN!  (easy for her to say - she's an awesome runner!)

Monday, March 5, 2012

My conservative running style - Am I phoning it in?

For those of you that have ever seen a Jillian Michael's video - I'm sure you know the expression phoning it in.  She uses it a lot - to make sure you push yourself to the max - and don't just "phone it in".  ( I know she didn't invent the expression - but that's where I've heard it most so I'm giving her credit.)

I went out yesterday for my long run of the week.  9 miles.  It's the longest run I've ever done.  With my new Garmin Forerunner 305 (I promise I'll stop talking about this sometime in the near future!) it gives me a lot more details on my run - while in process.  At times - my pace per mile was up near 13. 

I ran 9 miles at an average pace of 11:54 per mile.  Not a fast time - at all!  The Garmin did give me more freedom in where I ran - so I mixed it up a lot.  I didn't run my usual loop as I just couldn't imagine running it over and over again.  I ran all around my small town until I hit the 9 mile mark.  So - I'm sure some additional hills and new terrains made a difference - but none the less - not a great time.

Here's the kicker - my legs are KILLING me.  I knew last night I was gonna be super sore today.  It hurt to go up and downstairs by the middle of the afternoon yesterday.  NOT a good sign.

I'm a conservative person by nature.  I always err on the side of caution.  Not much of a risk taker.  I've been very "strategic" in my training plan as I've built up mileage.  Everything you read says to increase your mileage or your pace slowly over time.  I've done that - increased everything - SLOWLY. 

Perhaps - too slowly?  Maybe I've been phoning it in.  Not on purpose - but in my subconcious - running - but not running as hard as I could be.  Not getting the most out of it that I should be. 

How do you determine what's enough?  What's too little or what's too much?  None us want to end up injured and unable to run.  I know the mantra of "listen to your body" - but that means you have to try and figure out when you're being subconsciously lazy.  Not always an easy thing to do. 

I read a post from someone recently (I'm sorry but I don't remember who) and they had said that they do weight training on the same day they do their long run because they want to get the most out of their recovery days.  GREAT STRATEGY and an incredible amount of dedication.  I - on the other hand - come home from my long run - eat, eat and eat, lay around moaning and then - for anyone who will listen - I tell them how far I ran.  All while begging my husband to massage my knees, and achilles (which have been getting very sore lately - yikes). 

I think it's time to disconnect the phone service!  Clearly less talking and more doing is in order. (I may need to unplug my fridge as well :-)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The Running Snob...VENT

I want to start by saying how much I love this blogging community and how supportive everyone is.  I wish I could say the same about some of the other "runners" I "run" into.

For us newbies, or slow runners, or "older" runners  - it's intimidating to join a group of people with the runner's mentality.  More, faster, better...

People who don't run admire us.  People see me out and about in my running clothes and ask - are you coming back from a run?  a race?  They are impressed.  I get told now by some people that the "don't recognize me" unless I'm in my running clothes.  (clearly I've got some social issues as I should probably dress a little better at times!)

The not so easily impressed are other runners.  They want to know - how you did.  Pace per mile, how far ....comparing the whole time.  It's human nature - I get it.

What bothers me is how quick they can be to tell you about their accomplishments - in a way that puts yours down. 

I run 15 - 20 miles a week.  A year ago I didn't run.  AT ALL.  15 - 20 miles a week, just about every week, for 9 months now is a MAJOR accomplishment for me.  I'm PROUD.  Those that run 15 miles in a day - put runners like me in a different class.  I am in a different class - no doubt.  But I would like to be supported and recognized for my efforts.

This past week I got it in my head that I want to run a Ragnar.  I went on their website and discovered that they have one in September up near where one of my closest friends lives.  She's always complaining  telling me about how her book club has practically become a running club and how much I'd enjoy it.  (she's not a runner -so she's not too happy about it)

I sent her an email asking her to check with her book club if they are interested in putting a team together.  Here's a snippet from the email she got back from one of them ...

"Ragnar is the same concept of HTC but on a smaller scale. HTC is a shining gem of a race, suspended in time that can't be replicated. But I'm sure it's quite fun in it's own right"

What the f does that mean?  Anyways.....she's out.  Not interested. 

No responses from the rest of them.

Then - there's my other friend's sister who is a tri-athlete.  She's done / does it all.  When we ran our first 5 mile race a few months back - she told us the time we should be able to run it in.  Who does that?  I'm just happy I'm running and I'm finishing.  If I have a time goal - that's personal.  It's mine.  It's not for someone else to tell me what I should be doing. 

I run for myself - so I know what others think isn't relevant.  But as a new runner, a SLOW runner (one that's 42 and 5'1 so let's face it - I'm not gonna get that much faster!) , it's intimidating.  I love it.  I do.  I do it begrudgingly some days - but I get a lot of joy out of it.  My accomplishments, the improvements to my health and my self esteem make it all worth it. 

I hate that other runners are the ones trying to take that away.


Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday....some added motivation...and a prayer...

Can't wait for this to arrive!! I decided to splurge. I'm a numbers "gal" and I have a need to know!

Looking forward to this as well...

And I got a couple of these too.....

And on a much more serious thoughts and prayers are with the students and families of CHS.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Supplements - finding what works.

I am not a pill taker.  Yes - I take Advil (now that I've started running more than I ever have) and your occasional Tylenol - but there is something about a multivitamin that just doesn't work for me.

I general believe that if eat a healthy diet - you get the vitamins you need each day.  I also fully understand that most days - I don't eat as healthy as I should and therefore I am sure I am lacking in areas.

I do a lot of research on supplements and how good they are for your body.  I buy them  - and in my cabinet and or refrigerator they sit.  At least - until they expire and I throw them out. 

I'll be 43 in a couple of months and my body is definately starting to remind me of that on a regular basis.  My muscles don't hurt me after a long run nearly as much as my joints do! 

There's a ton of stuff out there on the internet telling me what I should take - and in the end - it amounts to a LOT of pills each day.  I have no valid reason for why I can't / don't take these.  I have a "pill box", I know they aren't bad for me and yet....swallowing those suckers just doesn't appeal to me.  The thought of it shuts me right down.

I'm going to get better.  I'm going to experiment with this and try and keep it as simple as possible.

Here's my plan....

1.  Multivitamin  (problem is most multis are 2 a day.  I never get 2 a day in!)
2.  Fish oil (I've actually found an orange flavored liquid supplement.  If it isn't expired - I'm gonna start taking this)
3.  Calcium - I'm going to try and drink one full glass of milk a day.  I don't generally do this - I usually have it in my coffee and that's it.  I know one glass won't fulfull my daily requirement but it's a start.
4.  Glucosamine.  Here's where it goes down hill.  The bottle I have is expired so I need to buy more.  These pills are ginormous and I'm trying to avoid a situation where I buy them and end up throwing them out again.  Because my joints ache - I'm thinking this will help.  Are there alternatives?  Suggestions anyone?

Do you take vitamins or supplements of any kind?  How do you stick with it?  How do you figure out what works and what doesn't?

Friday, February 24, 2012

My work from home plan - are these jeans too tight?

Working from home two days a week is a perk of my job that I - quite frankly - am not sure I could live without.

It affords me the opportunity to save on gas, time, spend more time with my kids and run outside 2 extra days.  So...I am in no way complaining about this gift bestowed upon me by my employer.

It does - however, personally challenge me some days.  I have instant access to my refridgerator  and I am in either my running clothes, PJs or some other amazingly comfortable apparel.  Not an easy recipe for self control. 

Today I got "snowed in". Yup  - 4 inches of snow has snowed me in!  Apparently a major road on my commute is closed due to a ton of accidents so I am stuck working from home. 

Friday is "weigh in" day for me and my girlfriend.  It's the home stretch and home - with my fridge - is the last place I want to be.  I'd rather be in my office sitting in meetings all day.

My survival strategy?  I'm putting on those jeans that haven't "fit" me in years.  I certainly can't wear them in public, and I'm not certain how comfortable I'll be sitting down - but they will serve as a constant reminder as to why I can't indulge those cravings!!   It's a head game and I'm in it to win it!  

What do you do to get past your cravings?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Smaller Goals....Bigger Gains....

I'm going to go out on a limb here and make a brazen assumption that most of "us" runners - are fairly type A.  Goal oriented, nothing's too challenging....won't be defeated...controlling....high strung.....(I'm also an Aries so you can imagine how the sign of the Ram factors in here). 

I've learned to be proud of my A mentality - but sometimes it defeats me before I even get started.  My to do lists are twice as long as my husbands on a weekend.  My "plan" for the week is mapped out down to every minute.  My exercise and dieting goals are set for the week.  The problem with this - especially when you are running a household - is that it doesn't allow "life" to get in the way.  Well - let me rephrase - life happens, my plan falls to sh*t and I have to start over. 

Very demotivating some days, weeks, months....

I can't change my whole personality - so I'm going to try and focus in on my running and my weight goals.   I think my controlling, big picture mentality is hurting me.  I need to break it down.  I'm so caught up in the fact that I'm training for a half marathon AND trying to lose 20 lbs - that I am not taking the time to think about what I need each day or week.  It's overwhelms me.  It drains me.  It causes me to head to the couch or the fridge! 

My girlfriend and I have decided to drop our long term goals and focus on weekly ones instead.  Losing a pound a week is a lot easier to think about than 20!  Running with my daily mileage goal is a lot less stressful than thinking about needing to run 13.1 at a time.  NOT TO MENTION - that - dare I say it - I COULD stop and walk if I had to.  There...I said it.  It's okay to walk if I need to. 

It's week one for me living with  this new thought process - and I'm not gonna lie - there's a battle going on in my head - but I believe -that in the end - I will prevail.  I will be ready to run my half when the time comes - and even at a pound a week - I'll be in a better place down the road.  Baby steps....

How do you approach your goals? 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Running....a source of stress or stress reliever?

I've hit a wall these past couple of weeks and I'm unsure what to do about it.  Please allow me to ramble on about this....(the beauty of the internet one can stop can just move along and I'll never know)....

The bigger picture of my life:

I've got a full time job that has me traveling approximately once a month (for multiple days).  When I travel - it isn't standard business travel where I finish my days and spend my nights alone in a hotel room.  I'm an event manager - so when I am on the road- I work from the early morning hours until late into the evening. (sort of the first one up and last one to bed scenario)  I don't do this alone - I have a team - but never the less - my travel schedule doesn't really allow me to take my workout on the road.

When I'm not traveling - I work from home two days a week (thank you God!) and on the other three days - I commute 1.5 hours each way to the office.  My husband's hours are longer - so I am still the one responsible for picking up my kids, getting them home, getting dinner ready, walking the dogs....and then there's the whole homework / bathing things that kids require. 

My hudsband is an incredible help - but our nights typically don't settle down until around 8:30 - 9:00,  when he heads to the gym and I put our youngest to bed.  (there's some irony here because when my oldest was her age - he was in bed by 7:30pm but that is just not possible these days!)

My days start at 5:15am.  That's the time I get up to get ready for work.  That does not factor in any time to get up and workout first.  Then I'd need to get up at 4:00am and I honestly can't do that. 

I realize I'm really all over the page at this time - so THANK YOU if you are still trying to follow along.

I generally rely on running to relieve my stress.  To help me clear my head and give me some much needed release.  If I weren't training for a half marathon it probably still would. 

My son got sick this week.  Between doctors appointments and taking care of him - I was tied up for essentially 3 days this week.  To add to it - my husband - who NEVER travels - was out of town for the week.  THEN I got sick.  Rarely do I get so sick that I need to stay home from work (I hate to waste a sick day being sick :-).  I was home on my couch for 2 days.  That's essentially a whole week to illness.

During all of this - I've been stressing over the fact that I'm not running.  I'm losing ground....I should be doing my long run...(which truth be told I've missed the past two weeks) and I'm STRESSED!

The bigger problem is - I don't miss it!! Not right now.  I'm fried, burnt out.  I want to go back to that couch I've been laying on for days and stay there!  This doesn't make me feel good about myself.  I pride myself in accomplishing things.  I'm not a slacker.  I'm type A all the way. 

Running is supposed to bring me joy - NOT cause me guilt or stress. 

What do I do now?  I need to think about it.  Or - I need to STOP thinking about it.

Hopefully this funk will pass quickly and I will be able to make up the ground I'm losing. 

I hope.....

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Nike (and Pandora) you're on my list! A Valentine Breakup....

I've seen so many posts about shoes and how to select the best ones, how much they can change your run, how having the right one for your running type can make an impact.....and how much time is spent trying to find THE shoe.

I've been sucked into the vortex.  Some of you know that my brother works for Nike so I try to be Nike loyal.  Yes - I get a discount but I also do try and support the brand that gives my brother his paycheck. 

Since I've been running I've been using the Lunarglide 2s.  Since I was/am a new runner - I had / have no real way to gauge a good vs bad running shoe.  I've been perfectly happy in my LG2s but maybe I could be better, faster, less achy with something else.

Turns out I am an underpronator, supinator....whatever you want to call it.  LG2s are not the best shoe for my running type.  So - after consulting my little bro and doing some research I ordered the Vomero 6s. 

I had such high hopes.  I was away for a few days this week so I was very excited when I got home yesterday morning and discovered the Vomeros had a arrived.  Tired as I was (I left my hotel for the airport at 3:30 EST) - I put on my running gear and hit the road.

I WANTED to get my 7 in.  I didn't want to have to run today because I'm always more tired 2 days post travel.  (see the tired theme here? - I thought running was supposed to give you energy?!) Anyways - I knew half a mile into it the shoes weren't for me.  The cushioning was all off, my toes were numb, I was generally unhappy.  I ended up running just over 3 and calling it a day. 

My legs (and feet) actually hurt me the rest of the day.  So NOT happy with Nike.  Research doesn't point towards them for premier running shoes - and I'm sorry to say - I'm going to have to jump ship and find someone else. Looks like Nike and I are parting ways...let's hope they keep making cool soccer shoes so I can continue to give them a good percentage of my paycheck for my son's sport.

By they way - can I return shoes that I ran 3 miles in?  I'm gonna try because truth be told - these shoes aren't even comfortable enough (for me) to walk in. 

Now - let's talk Pandora.  I use Pandora when I run alone because I want to have my phone with me for safety purposes.  (I am switching to an IPhone in March but for now I have a Blackberry)

I hate relying on it for my music.  Yesterday - even though there wasn't a cloud in the sky - I only had music for about half my run.  That had me focusing even more on my aching feet and offered me one more excuse to call it a day.  I generally don't need motivation to run - but I do need a push on my long run days.  I REALLY need a running partner.  

Do you use Pandora for your runs?  Any under pronators out there with shoe suggestions? 

Monday, February 6, 2012

A need for speed....

I signed up last minute for a 5 mile race on Sunday with my local running club.  It was FREE (love that!) to all members so I really had nothing to lose.

I will start off by saying - I did not want to run yesterday.  I did NOT want to run.  I drug my butt out to the race.  I'm not certain why I was so "under"motivated.  Maybe it's because the race didn't start until 10am and by then I was all nice and comfy in my house not wanting to leave.  There's something to be said for getting up and out early.


Let's be real - even though the race was free - the only runners signing up for a run on February 5th are RUNNERS!  As in - seriously - way faster than me - runners. 

As you know - I'm training for a half marathon.  One of my problems with races is that I really am tired after I run them.  I'm honestly not certain why - I think its the mental strain as much as the physical strain because (as noted by my finishing time) I don't really "race" much faster than I train.

I told myself as I was running that I was counting this as my weekly long run and nothing more.  (at the end of the race I ran for another mile to give myself 6 for the long run - which was my target)  I didn't want to push myself because I wanted to make sure I could continue to train according to my schedule for the week. 

I realize at this point a lot of this endless rambling is just nonsense to you so I'll try and make my point.  I ran my 5 mile race in 53:10.  That's almost 2 minutes more than my PR on it - and even though I know I didn't push myself as hard as I could have - I'm disappointed in the time.  It was a really easy course.  NOT TO MENTION there were only about 10 people behind me - out of 120ppl.  WHY am I so slow? 

I know I should train on speed - but I also need to train on endurance.  It doesn't matter how fast I can run a mile if I can't run 13 of them in April.  I know it's a combination and I am doing some speed training - but it seems when I race - my body sets its pace and I -  apparently - haven't found yet the mental strength to push past it. 

PLUS - I'm tired today.  Wiped out- don't want to run and won't so that I can get in a long run on Wednesday before I head out of town on a business trip. 

Not feeling it today .....or feeling too much of it depending on how you look at it....

How do you pick yourself up out of a slump?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Wordless Wednesday

 My "running" view
AKA - The Road Ahead

What my son wore to school today - it's 62 Degrees outside!! 

What my daughter wanted to wear to school today!  YUP - that's a PJ top and shorts over top of her striped leggings.....she's got style...and she knows how to use it....

Since I took her picture - she wanted to take mine.  Not too shabby for a 5 (soon to be 6) year old!


Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Age is just a number….or is it?

I know that there are a lot of younger runners whippersnappers out there….but I just have to vent a bit …

I found running this past year – having never been an athlete this has been quite an adventure for me.  I’m a planner by nature – so I’ve been  stressing over studying the art of running as much as I’ve actually been running. 

Yesterday I had a conversation with a close work friend.  She was telling me that her daughter was running a half marathon in 7 weeks.  I was shocked by this to say the least.  The daughter that just at Christmas time we were discussing how out of shape she was, who needed to lose weight and get herself together?  The daughter that last summer out of the blue signed herself up for a triatholon and then needed to be rescued by the search crew during the biking portion?

The conversation went something like this:

Her - “A’s running a half marathon in March”

Me – “Really – how’s she gonna do that?”

Her - “Well – she’s been running –she’s going to run a 5k this weekend, a 10k in a couple of weeks – and then she’s gonna do the half in March”

Me – “really – just like that?”

Her - “She’s got a trainer helping her, she’s going to be on vacation in March before the race so she’s going to need to find a way to fit it in.  She looks great – she’s lost a ton of weight”

Ok – is it me?  It seriously isn’t supposed to work this way is it?  I am busting my butt running – now for 8 months and mapping out my strategy to run this half – and her 24 YEAR OLD daughter is just going to decide to run one as she can fit it in?

I did point out to her that recently in the Philly Half there were two deaths – both people in their twenties.  I remember hearing about this and panicking.  (I did not investigate these – but I did hear during the report on this that it was eluded to that they didn’t train the way they should.)

I find it a bit frustrating.  I’ve worked hard for every mile, every minute I’ve put in.  I’m dedicated to this sport.  As a forty something  newbie it has not come easy.  I’m not fast, I’m “cautious”….realistic….all of those words best used to describe the conservative, controlling person that I am.

I’m certain that with age comes wisdom (ha) and that overthinking this  my training plan will persevere.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

No Frozen Boogers.....My Freeze Your Thorns off Race Report.

Yesterday I ran the Freeze Your Thorns of 5K hosted by the Boring Runner.     

Happily the race was uneventful.  Almost boring :-).   As I said in my previous post - Friday was supposed to be a rest (sounds better to say recovery day - I think I'll start using that) day - but my overzealous self signed up for a last minute 5k with a deadline of Friday night.  I ran that sucker as fast as I could so I could get back to my wine!

Needless to say - my legs were killing me by yesterday morning.  Crosstraining is overrated.  I had done a lower body workout on Thursday night - so everything was piling on by the time the weekend hit.  Seriously - nothing makes you feel more out of shape than trying something new!

My stubborn nature (and my constant desire to win free things) had me lacing up those kicks yesterday morning.  Honestly - as much as my legs ached (and that's not an over statement) - once I started running - nothing bothered me.  It was a beautiful - 46 degree - sunny day.  (I live in NY so that's not common for this time of year!)  I ran slow (34:30) - but I was running.  I probably could have shaved a minute off my time if I wasn't futzing around with my phone's camera trying to take pictures for my blog.  (honestly- I need to get a life!)

Needless to say - no great pics....lots of the ground...but all was good. 

So thank you Boring Runner for hosting this event - happy to say - no frozen boogers for me.  Maybe next year!

My son's soccer number.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Five~

1.        I’m running two virtual 5ks this weekend.  1 of them I apparently need to run tonight (I didn’t realize the deadline is for end of day today – yikes!  So much for a rest day).  The first one is to celebrate Toni’s Blogiversary and 34th birthday over at RunningLovingLiving.  The other one – which I will run tomorrow, is the Freeze Your Thorns Off 5K – hosted by the Boring Runner .  These virtual runs really motivate me to keep moving.  (the fact that I’m running tonight is a perfect example!)

2.       I signed up for a Twitter account this week.  That’s been exciting and has been keeping me busy.

3.       I got very excited this week when I realized that the 2012 race calendars are starting to come out.  I sign up for as many local races as I can (very low budget which is great!) so I like to get these on my calendar and get signed up as soon as possible.  Benefits of early sign up are twofold – first and foremost – early birds usually get a shirt (yup – I’m shallow) and second, once I’m committed there’s always something to train for.

4.       I signed up for a 10 mile race on March 11th.  This will be my longest distance race (to date) and will be great preparation for my half marathon in April.  Of course, the weather on March 11th ought to be interesting!  It also happens to be my baby girl’s 6th birthday so I’ll need to run fast so I can get home and celebrate.

5.       11 weeks till my half marathon.  I’m getting excited.   8 months ago I couldn’t run a mile and now look at me!! WOOT

Thursday, January 26, 2012

My Blogging Addiction

Amanda over at RuntotheFinish brought up in her most recent post the fact that Google Friend Connect  is going away.  This sparked some commentary on how people are supposed to keep track of other blogs.

I guess this is where my blogging ignorance has paid off.  I don't use google reader as I can't quite figure it out.  I use friend connect because it's easier to leave comments on other blogs (how's this gonna work now?) but other than that - I actually use my own website to follow other bloggers.

See that long list to the right of this post?  I get that this doesn't make for the prettiest bloggie homepage - but it works.  I check my own blog homepage several times and day and when I see new posts - I get very excited.

There's something about the blogging community that is addicting.  I shouldn't care what Running Ricig had for dinner last night - but for some reason I do.

Stephanie over at RunforFun always has good stuff to say - talk about having an upbeat attitude! 

Not to mention RunwithJess, BlondePonytail (who took a week off from blogging over the holidays  - what's up with that ? :-), SUAR (I'm actually thinking of getting a tattoo that says SUAR I like the motto so much), MissZippy,.....the list goes on and on.

And it does  -  As evidenced to the right. 

Reading other people blogs is my favorite part of this. 

You guys motivate me - give me ideas - keep me striving to do better.  (Like Courtney over at A So Called Runner who in one year shaved 10 minutes off her 5K PR. Yay Courtney!) all of those bloggers listed to the right (as I can't possibly give you all a shout out in this post!) - know this - I miss you when you're "quiet". 

If you've got a favorite blog that I don't have listed - PLEASE send it my way. 

Why do you blog?  Do you read as much as you write - or more?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The cost of running....

Do you have a running budget? 

This is my first "year" of running - and now that the holidays are over and I'm trying to look ahead - I've realized I need a line item in my budget for running.

In my current circle - the race fees aren't too crazy.  However, my first half marathon is coming up in April - and that by far is my biggest entry fee - not to mention that I'll need to stay over night and the other misc. expenses that come along with that.  This "event" is going to cost me a decent chunk of change - being in NYC doesn't help.  (but it should be AWESOME!!)

THEN there's the stuff.  This is the coolest part to me.  I want it all - of course - I can't afford to spend that kind of loot so I need to prioritize.

Here's what on my list:

New Shoes - ok - this is a must!  I have two pair of Nikes that I got last June (I will admit that my brother works for Nike so I get a discount) - THAT SAID - I'm not certain that they are the best shoe for me.  I plan on going to a running store and getting a gait analysis done to help guide me on this.  Truth be told - it's this upcoming trip to the running store that has prompted this budgeting task!  I know when I get there I'm going to want everything!

Garmin - would love one of these - but it's not cheap.

Compression EVERYTHING!  Ok - I really need pants and probably another pair of shorts.

Bondi Hat (love these!)

RoadID - love the one that hooks on your shoe and holds a key :-)

More running gear - my clothes are starting to look a little ragged.  I actually wear them (and wash them!) the most!

Do you have a budget?  How do you prioritize?  Any tips for me?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Running isn't everything - or is it?

The purpose of this post today is two-fold.  When I initially started to think about what I should write for my next post - the subject line was simply Running Isn't Everything.

I'll explain.

I will shamefully admit that I just purchased the 10 minute trainer by Tony Horton.  While I consider myself to be a more advanced "athlete" (ok - I still don't consider myself an athlete) - I would like to think I need to commit more than 10 minutes to exercise.  That said -  I don't do any other cross training besides running.  I want running to be my primary focus and I don't have a lot of additional time - so I thought - what the heck, I'll give it a shot. 

On Saturday morning I put in my first 10 minute DVD.  14 minutes later (because it takes longer than 10!) I could barely walk.  On Sunday - my legs were jello and my muscles were extremely sore. 

It was at that time that I decided Running Isn't Everything.  Clearly my body needs more cross training and even if it's only in 10 minute segments - I need some work! 

Moving on to Monday -

I ended up needing to have a "medical procedure" on Monday - not planned.  I can't run or exercise for a week.  It's Wednesday - I'm depressed, I'm stressed, I'm tired and I WANT TO RUN! 

I NEED to run.  Running may not be everything - but it's a part of me.  It's more than just exercise.  It consoles me, it pushes me - I hate it (a lot) some days - but take it away and I am going through withdrawal for it. 

I'm going to walk today on my TM  - slowly so I don't get in trouble by my doctor - but it's something. 

I hate to rush time - but may this week fly by!


Saturday, January 14, 2012

M.I.A. .....

Sorry I've been MIA for the past week - I've been traveling.  When I travel its primarily for work - and when I'm on these trips my days are literally 20 hour days for 8 days straight.  I'm not complaining (although I seriously could) - I'm just explaining my absense. 

Now I'm back.  I haven't run since last Saturday (I was able to put in a few days of running before things got crazy) - but now I'm jet lagged.  Not because of a time change - as there wasn't one - but because of the mental and physical drain on me when I'm working for these trips.  (ok - apparently I AM complaining)

I've missed reading all of your blogs and have lots of catching up to do.  I'm working my way through them (from the comfort of my couch).

I need to run - I mentally need to run - but I'm tired.  When I take time off from running - I stress about losing my "gains".  That said - I need one more day....I promise - tomorrow morning I will get up - lace up - pile on those winter running clothes....and get back to it.

Taking a break from running (forced or not) is almost as  mentally stressful as the physical toll it sometimes takes on your  body.

Chat soon!!  

Monday, January 9, 2012

Today's the day - I'M REGISTERED!!

I signed up for my first half marathon!! YAY ME!  More / Fitness Magazine's Half Marathon in Central Park.  I'm very nervous AND I can't wait. 

Luckily it's a couple of months away so I've got time to get mentally prepared as well as physically.  I also registered to do this by myself so if there's anyone who wants to join me - let me know.

On a seperate note - I'm in Orlando this week (NOT for the Marathon) and it's been difficult to get my run in.  I have managed to get a few miles under my belt - but the rest of the week may be a wash for me. 

When I was out running on Saturday I loved the warning sign that I passed saying - WARNING, WALK at your own risk - do not approach the alligators or poisonous snakes. 

I figured I was good because I wasn't walking!  YIKES!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

How to decide if I need a coach - HELP!

This Monday registration opens up for the half marathon that I plan on running in April.  I'm very excited - but uncertain that I am training for this event the way I should be.

I have read quite a few books, blogs and articles online and I think a running coach would benefit me.

Here's my dilemna - I can't seem to find a "local" running coach - PLUS that may cost me a small fortune.

If I get an online running coach - how much different is that than me reading a book and trying to do it myself? 

Have you had  coach - in person or online?  Was it beneficial? 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Miss Zippy's got an awesome giveaway!

Head on over to her sight, so that you can try and win the Lucy Hatha Leggings she just reviewed.  Of course - I don't really want you to win - because I WANT THEM!

Good Luck!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Be prepared to be enlightened....

I got tagged by Kathy over at Just Keep Running and I have to admit - my first reaction was to be a little stressed.  21 random things....Hmmm....

Luckily - I have an hour+ commute to the office which gives me lots of time for "random"  thinking.  Here goes.....

  1. My guilty pleasure is bubble gum.  I love to get my hands on some "Hubba Bubba" and blow bubbles until my jaw hurts.  (another fun thing to do on my long commute :-)
  2. I'm a leftie - but I swing a softball bat with my right hand. 
  3. I'm addicted to running - that said - I hate it most days.  Go figure.
  4. Me and my girlfriends started stealing booze from our parents when we were 13.  Not something I'm proud of - especially since I have an almost 11 year old!
  5. I'm a horrible sleeper.  I come by it honestly.  My grandmother, mother, sisters....none of us sleep through the night.  I'm hating this fact because my 5 year old daughter is already showing signs of this "ailment".
  6. I come from a family of large hipped women.  We call it the "family curse".  (making my fat butt not my fault :-)
  7. I travel often for my job.  While I hate being gone for long periods at a time (I am sometimes gone for a week at a time) - I secretly enjoy being away for 1 or 2 days.  I miss my kids (and my husband) but the peace and quiet of a hotel room is delightful!
  8. I have a sweet toothe.  I eat candy every day.  A few years ago as a New Year's resolution I gave up chocolate for 30 days.  I didn't feel any better for it so I went right back to it.  (of course, if you refer back to #6 these two may be related!)
  9. I'm a Packer Fan.  I live in Giants country.  This doesn't make life easy some days.
  10. I'm a Brett Farve fan.  This is a direct conflict with # 9.  (don't tell my family!)
  11. I don't balance my checking account.  (does anybody do this anymore?)
  12. I love being a soccer mom.  I will gladly spend the day at the fields.
  13. I'm a control freak.  Nothing more to say on this.  It is what it is.
  14. I'm a big fan of the F-bomb.  I use it way too much - but it gives me pleasure.  (hanging my head in shame now)
  15. Even though I complain about it - I actually enjoy watching WWE.
  16. I'm 5'1.  My brother is 6'6.  Seriously - how is that fair?
  17. I still have clothes in my closest from 30lbs ago.  I'm convinced I'll get back into them this year and I'm planning on it! 
  18. I hate bedtime with my kids.  Trying to get them to stay in bed drains me to the point of being more tired than they are.
  19. I could give up cable TV.  I rarely watch TV and the noise that comes from it and the disruption that it causes in my house some days makes me wish we didn't have it.  My husband happens to be an addict so there is never any chance of this happening!
  20. I exercise at home (well - I try to).  I pay for a gym membership just in case my treadmill dies. 
  21. I love when my house is clean, and everything is in order, to sit down and read a book.  Of course, the stars need to be aligned for this so it is rare!
Well.....there they are.  There's nothing like putting all of this nonsense about yourself down in writing to make you sit back and do a little self assessment.

I'm tagging 5 other bloggers now - paying it forward.....

Michelle over at RunnPrincessRunn
Cortney at Nerd on the Run
Paige at The Last Donut
Courtney at A So Called Runner
Alecia AKA Hugh Jass (love it!) over at Tin Can Treader

Have Fun!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2012 Resolution Run!

I signed up for Amanda's (Run to the Finish) Resolution Run today.  Thank goodness the minimum requirement was to run a mile - because I am way more tired today than I thought I'd be.  NOT because I stayed up to watch the ball drop (well - maybe a little of that) but because my body is really recovering from my long run yesterday.  Seven miles for me is a personal best so I'm feeling it today.

Anyways....I put in 2 miles tonight.  My legs ache. A LOT! 

I chose the above resolution because I can't seem to find a training plan that I want to stick with.  I am all over the place on this.  I need to do the research (again :-), consider whether a running coach is an option, pick a plan and stick with it - PERIOD. 

I need to do this quickly as I am counting the days until the registration opens up for my first half marathon.  (January 9th!)

Thanks Amanda for getting me back on my feet today!