April 30, 2012

Illinois Half Marathon race recap

I want to lay the facts all out there first.

Running is hard for me.
Running does not come natural to me.
It has taken me about three years to drop my pace a minute and a half/mile.
I have an injury that between two sports doctors, two physical therapists, and five years, still plagues me.

And it reared it's ugly head at Saturday's race.
So, because of all of the above, I am taking two weeks--two weeks--off from running.

This will probably be super hard for me, but I joined Run to the Finish's yoga challenge  to help with the post-race stretching, and I'm going to try to hit the pool this week to start my tri training and keep up the cardio.
My hope is that this will give my leg some healing time.

I felt it necessary to open with honesty today.

Now. To the recap.

Saturday's race was good--I PR'd--but it was hard. Probably one of the hardest races I've ever run.


  Time: 1:56.46  Overall: 1802/6758  FemalePl: 611/3709 Agediv: 104/618

Motivating Monday: We are enough.

I want to continue on from last Thursday’s gratitude post. But before I do, I have to tell you my results.
Time: 1:56.45  Overall: 1802/6758  FemalePl: 611/3709 Agediv: 104/618
And now, to continue:
motivation 9
Here’s the thing. I set a new PR for my half marathon distance, but I probably ran the worst race mentally that I have ever run. (More on this in my race recap later tonight.)

April 27, 2012

Fitness Links for your weekend reading. (To keep your mind off of race nerves)

Short and to the point today because it’s been a frazzling week, I’ve got race packing to do, and then it’s time to hit the road!


25Physed-tmagArticle1. It’s obviously important to live a non-sedentary life to help stave off heart disease and diabetes, but a new study has shown a that movement helps keep after dinner blood sugar spikes at bay.

2. Who knew that ferrets could help prove the runner’s high?

3. Positive thoughts people.  That’s what keeps us going. Which is why, despite the rain tomorrow forecasted for my race., I am still going to PR. The rain will make me run faster.

4. But the million dollar question is when do we lose our ability to only think positively? Forget how other people would react and channel your inner child. Say “I’m awesome” [I as in you]. Brag on yourself for a 400465_m03bit. I guarantee it will help push you through that race/run/workout.  Maybe that should be my mantra for tomorrow morning.

5. But speaking of awesome, you must check out this gal. In under four years, she went from Wall Street woman to Olympic hopeful. She’s one of the world’s fastest women cyclists. She’s definitely heroine worthy in my book.


Expect a full race recap eventually.
Have a good Friday!


Passing the Baton: What are you reading this week? Any good articles/tips for me?

April 26, 2012

Prerace packing and the Ninth Circle of Hell

I never thought too much about my race gear until I started reading other running blogs and seeing how runners become attached to certain brands.
Which I totally get. There are things I believe in.
I also happen to have a tight budget, and most of the time, running gear doesn’t fit in that.
But, I happened to stash away a pretty penny or two over the last couple of months, and for Saturday’s race, I’ll be trying out a few new things.
(That’s what happens when you do laundry in our house and the hubster leaves coins or $10 in his pants. Finders keepers.)

Don’t worry though. This isn't the post where I plug a certain brand of shoes/clothing/fuel, etc.
This is the post where I plug a million different brands.

Besides, with the myriad of companies  I’ll be sporting on Saturday, I’m sure my brand mixing will earn me a spot in the ninth circle of Hell.


For you, Music Man




Thought for a Thursday: Gratitude

Thought for your Thursday: What if we chose to only be ourselves? To run how we run? To finish in the time we are capable of? Sometimes, I get so caught up in the running-blog world, that I forget I’m not those girls. I haven’t been running as long as them. I haven’t run the amount of mileage they have run. I don’t have super long legs that are injury-free like them. And so, because I forget that, I sometimes am disappointed in my finish time, or the fact that I might not be able to push myself to 8 min/miles at the race this weekend.
But if I choose my joy, then I’ll realize that 8:30 min/miles are a MILESTONE for me. Last year, I couldn’t run that fast.
But today, I can.
Be happy in your own milestones. Because as you keep running, you’re pace will get faster, the mileage will add up, and you WILL cross that finish line.
Be you.
Chose your joy.
Choose joy. Find strong.

April 25, 2012

It's National Walk at Lunch Day...

Did you head outside??
I put in two miles.
What distance did you walk today?

And yes...I actually walked not ran.
It is an active recovery day/tapering week after all.
Go enjoy the sun!! (Hopefully it's sunny where you are.)

Weakness Wednesday and (another) Yoga Challenge

Remember last July when I did my 30 day [at-home] Yoga challenge? It went well, and  I completed the challenge, but I wasn't too changed afterwards. Mainly because my challenge consisted of doing yoga at least 10 minutes a day. Since I was commuting and super busy at the time, 10 minutes of yoga was pretty much all I did. And it wasn't enough to increase my flexibility or persuade me to keep my yoga practice.  

So, I'm trying the 30 day Yoga challenge again, only this time, I'm not hosting it.


Head over to Run to the Finish to sign up. During the month of May, she is challenging readers to practice yoga at least 30 minutes a day.
That’s it. That’s all the guidelines we get. What type of yoga is up to us. Where we practice is up to us.
It’s going to be a good challenge.
She'll have posts about yoga throughout the month, and we'll also be hearing from other yogis. I think it will be good to join someone else's challenge.

April 24, 2012

Tapering Tuesday (and Luna)

Obviously my running will be dwindling significantly this week, but I did enjoy a nice 4 mile run this morning with my RB.
And some good stretching.
Because that’s what taper week is all about.
Less miles. More stretching.
And carbs. Lots and lots of carbs.

Then I worked.

But my CEP Compression sleeves kept my calves toasty and feeling good even though I stood most of the day.
Who rests their legs during taper week?
Not me. That’s who.

Tonight was an awesome grilled shiskabob dinner with friends, and we made these:


runform  colleen   kim

April 23, 2012

Motivating Monday: On Pace

It's race week.
Which also means it's taper week.
I like tapering my miles (taper = lessening miles run week before race) because it means I'm getting ready for the big run. But I also dislike tapering because sometimes it makes me lose confidence in myself. I feel that by running less miles, my body is giving up on me and won't be able to run the full race come Saturday.
I know. It's a bunch of crock.
That's why this morning I'm putting up two pieces of motivation.
Because I need it.

Whether I PR or not, this is what I want to feel

April 20, 2012

This rainy day won't bring me down.

I woke up to a simple rain shower this morning, and it's absolutely beautiful.
That's not something I  normally say about rain, but today it's my focused thoughts
Friday's are my off days and usually I try to get some yoga in, but this morning, my body said sleep.
So I did for a little bit longer than usual.
We had a group of friends over last night for dinner and fellowship, which, when you get a bunch of musical people together turns out to be a night of worship.
Last night was a very soul-filling evening.
A much needed one before the weeks to come.

I was really hoping for another sunshiny, beautiful day  like we've had this week, but the rain has come.
The farmers have planted early, so I know they've been praying for rain,  but I just enjoy the sun too much for it to disappear sometimes.
However, I'll take the rain today. It is sort of a foreshadow on the next couple weeks, but I'm going to try to see past the gloominess.
Music Man is headed off on a 16-day Army venture back to our old stomping grounds (Ft. Hood,) and I'll be here training, racing, and hopefully writing a bunch. I always hate the times that he has to leave, especially this one since it's in the middle of the semester, but he's been working on his classes early so he won't have a huge load while he's gone. Plus, he's headed back to Texas and I am super jealous. I miss the post, the food down there, and most of all our friends.

Fitness Links Friday will return...

...but due to Music Man leaving today for a short deployment. I'm filling Friday with other words.

Tune in next week for links

April 19, 2012

Thought for a Thursday: Gratitude

A thought for your Thursday:   It's simple today.  Whatever you do, do it in joy.
You will be changed.

April 18, 2012

The thing about choosing joy is... it's contagious

Yesterday started out well because when I woke up, I knew I only had a half day of work.
Granted, I have to go in Saturday morning, but sometimes that afternoon off during the week is splendid.

Not to mention that I quit my job, and then had an interview for a part-time gig.

Oh that's right. I haven't told you.

I'm officially going back to school for my teaching certification. Classes start May 21st.

I'm still debating whether I want to teach High School or Middle School English or if I would rather become a school librarian/children's librarian. But, getting my teacher certification is the first step, and all the observations and student teaching will help me decide which path to take.
Which is also why I interviewed for a part-time library gig that I sort of just stumbled upon last week.
And because with the two of us in school full time, we'll need money.

Eh. Not so worried.

April 16, 2012

Motivating Monday: I'm not a quitter...just learning to rest

It was most definitely a whirlwind weekend.
Music Man and I traveled to see his family, which is about a four hour drive, for a late Easter and let me tell you, when you can't leave until after work Friday and have plans to be back by Sunday evening, that's a lot of driving for a little time.
And traveling never always messes with my running plans.

I was a good runner though and packed all of my clothes, recovery junk, and even my own running fuel.
But I definitely skipped my 10 mile run.

Am I upset or mad at myself for doing it?
Am I going to make it up this week?

April 13, 2012

Fitness reading for you!

Good morning readers!
It's Friday. It's early. Music Man is still gone, so I've got some good reading for you.

1. Are you just starting your running journey? If so, this article is for you. I know, I keep promising you all of these awesome running tip articles like carb loading/fuel, recovery, race tips, etc, and then I follow through with articles I've found online. I'm lame. I know. I think maybe I'm slightly nervous that what I have to say isn't as cool and smart as what the experts say. I mean, you all know I'm not a certified coach or anything (yet) but I have been around the block a few times(literally and figuratively). I think I'll venture out this week. Tell you something you want to know. But until then, you can get a quick overview here. Ps. I liked number 6. I never even thought about running on different sides of the road before. I'm a rule keeper when it comes to safety.

April 12, 2012

Thought for a Thursday: Gratitude

More credit to the endorphins.

A thought for your Thursday:  What if we incorporated more joy into our life? What would happen if we actually chose to be joyful?

Let's see what happens today. 

April 11, 2012

Best. Commercial. Ever. and Talk of Marathons

I have to share two things today because that's what runner's do. We share.

Well, maybe if we're high on endorphins and giddy. Which I am this morning.

Have you seen the new Nike Free commercial yet? My best friend texted me about it last week because she saw it on TV and said it remind her of me.

Then I was perusing this gal's blog and she had a link to the video. It is hilarious!!
I finally saw it on TV this weekend, too,  but it's a shorter version, so here's the YouTube clip. I still smile every time I watch it.
And be warned: the song will get stuck in your head.

April 9, 2012

A weekend of food and some mileage

When your Friday starts out with this: (a leftover lunch that I've had every day this week because it's absolutely delicious and healthy--spinach, grilled chicken, black beans,multi-grain w/flax seed bread, and an amazing citrus vinaigrette)

Then you definitely know the weekend will be full of this:

No, that's not from pinterest. I'm crafty.

Motivating Monday: Overcoming Doubts

As per every Sunday lately, I did my long run yesterday. And I think I’m going to do a little adjustment to last week’s long run.

Here’s the thing. I’ve been taking a break this week from running. Last week,  I was nine weeks into my training, and I was tired. The last couple of weeks had been busy at work, I had a lot going on in the evenings, and my body was just in need of dire rest. So, I slept in some last week, did more yoga than usual, and skipped over my morning runs. I just needed a break.

So I was a little nervous yesterday heading out on my nine miler. Now logically, I know that one week off will not set me back at all or cause me to lose any fitness, in fact, rest often brings me back stronger. But subconsciously, my mind was feeding me a bunch of crap about how there was no way I was going to be able to run nine miles. Especially since last week’s run was still sitting in the forefront of my brain, plaguing me with disappointment. And then once I headed out, my hip joint decided to flare up a bit.

Sometimes I just get tired of running with pain.
Most times I get tired of my brain telling me I can’t.
Often times I fight both of those battles every. single. time. I head out to run.

April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!!

From the both of us!

April 6, 2012

National Walk to Work Day

Ps....# 7 a bonus.

Did you know today is National Walk to Work Day?
I didn't either.

Perhaps I'll go for a nice walk during my lunch break, but definitely not in those heels.

Fitness Links for your weekend reading

It's finally Friday. Not necessarily my favorite day of the whole week, but definitely my favorite day of the work week. Here's hoping it goes by fast today, though, I still have to work tomorrow morning.
C'est la vie!
 Anywho, here's some weekend reading for you. And be warned. It was another good week of reading, so I've loaded you up!

1. Female endurance athletes, I'm talking to you! Any of you ever have trouble giving blood because you're iron levels were low? Or have you struggled with fatigue, decreased performance, decreased intensity while working out? If so, this post from Runner's World Sweat Science blog is for you! I initially found it through HRG this week, and I'm going to tell you to check out her post on it too. Now, I love reading about the science behind health and fitness, but sometimes it just gets too scienc-y for my literature focused brain.

But, HRG sums it up nicely in her post, telling us that pretty much all of our endurance work blocks iron absorption for our bodies and it might be beneficial for us to think about supplementing or eating iron-rich foods. I tend to go the latter route and some of my favorites are red meat, eggs, spinach, and beans. Running is good for us, yes, but we still have to be conscious about some things!

April 5, 2012

Thought for a Thursday [I like alliteration]: Gratefulness

This just struck me today. Perhaps this gal (Yup, her again. Mainly because I love her writing style, she's an awesome runner, and she has this crazy positive outlook on life that I can't help but want to adopt!) is rubbing off on me. I think my quest also has a huge factor in my starting-to-be-more-positive-about-everything lifestyle. I credit the endorphins too.

Anyway, just a thought for your Thursday evening: When you wake up tomorrow, be grateful. See how your day changes.

No run Thursday

This week I have run a total of 3 miles.


And my race is in less than a month.

My scheduled training for said race included a 5 miler-a 3 miler-a 5 miler and then a 15k this Sunday.
But I just haven't felt like running this week.

Don't go jumping to conclusions though, I'm not suddenly facing burn-out or tired of running, it's just been a much needed rest week.
Which should really include a couple of 2 to 3 mile EASY runs to keep my legs going, but instead has included almost no running, lots of yoga, foam rolling, ibuprofen, icing, and sleeping in.

April 2, 2012

Motivating Monday: It's time to start

Well another weekend and another long run have passed.
Truthfully, I was bummed out all day yesterday because of my run.

It was another beautiful morning. The weather was perfect. I had gotten plenty of sleep and fueled up well. I was ready and excited to head out to run.

To stay on pace with my training, I scheduled 8 miles. Really, I wanted to push myself to about 9 because I have been feeling really good lately with my runs. Well, I headed out and started my running app on my phone that signals GPS and keep track of my mileage. Even though it was blue sky yesterday, it just seemed like the satellite and my phone were not connecting. The app kept freezing and essentially told me I was on an 11 minute pace. (Anyone want to send me a Garmin watch to test? I’d be happy too!)

I totally felt like I was running around 8-9 minutes per mile.
But after 1 hour and 22 minutes, I just stopped. I had been running frustrated the whole time not knowing my mileage or pace, but I totally felt like I ran close to 10 miles. So that excited me. I figured I had a good run under my soles.