Thursday, October 27, 2011

Excuses! Excuses!

This afternoon I went for a run. My first run in a week. It was not a good run.

I had a bad run because...
- I hadn't run in a week.
- It was warmer out than I thought and my clothing choice was inaccurate.
- Maybe I shouldn't have eaten that pre-run mini snickers bar.
- I did not have enough water.
- I simply was not in the mood to run, tried to get it over with quickly and ended up failing miserably going from running fast to walking.

My entire run, these were the things that were running through my mind. Negative, no good excuses! It's no wonder I had a bad run. I set out to run 3 miles, I quit at 2.39 miles.

I'm planning to run the local Turkey Trot 5k on Thanksgiving Day. A feat that I confidently told myself I could do with my eyes shut, with no training at all and heck, maybe I'll even sprint the thing and set a PR. Oh, how very naive and amusing. You know that saying "if you don't use it, you lose it"? I think that directly applies here. No more excuses. Excuses are just weakness and something that is going to prevent me from achieving my goals and being the runner that I desire to be. Today I felt like I could hardly call myself a "walker" let alone a "runner". I hope that I can use this as a lesson and a motivator.

Readers: Are excuses keeping you from achieving your goals? What do you do to stay motivated?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

the journey...

Do you remember your very first pair of running shoes? I am not talking about your gym shoes you had to get for P.E. I am talking about the pair that you would spend the next six months pounding to dust as your forged mile after mile around the neighborhood.

I was fourteen, the summer before my sophomore year of high school. I was in California spending the summer with my grandfather. I had spent every summer with my grandfather, Papa, since I was two and my parents divorced. 

I was grumpy. Probably all those hormones raging. Papa was running an errand and told me to come with him. In the car Papa wanted to know what was wrong. I mumbled nothing. We were quiet for awhile. I assumed he would leave it alone, having raised three daughters himself he was probably use to these mood swings and knew to steer clear. Instead my sweet Papa brought it up again. He asked again if everything was okay, if I was homesick maybe? I told my grandfather that I felt fat. I was still round cheek and soft like I was at ten, not like my friends back home who had thinned out and left their baby rolls behind. 

Papa didn't reassure me that I was perfect the way I was. He didn't tell me I was pretty, or healthy, or big-boned...he actually didn't say anything. Instead he drove me to Big 5. He took me to the shoe aisle. He told me that he was going to buy me a pair of running shoes, and I would run. All summer. And I did.

I came home that summer changed. I had lost about twenty pounds (healthily), I had a confidence I didn't have the year before. I also had a love for running, for pushing myself, for believing that I could take it on.

I'm curious you remember the story of your first running shoes?

Justin helped me dig through all our boxed photos to uncover this one. It was my first week home from California, I'm strapping on my pedometer, tracking my runs even then, feeling so proud!

(September, home from Cali, rockin' the Adidas)


Monday, October 24, 2011

Official race photos - Girlfriends Half Marathon

Here are our official race photos from the Girlfriends Half Marathon, taken by Evan Pilchik Photography. I tried to put them in the order I could best remember. There was usually a big smiley face sign that said something like "smile for the camera" that's exactly what we did (when we noticed). 



Saturday, October 22, 2011

the need for speed...kinda

As training for the half wound down, I spent some time thinking about what I wanted my runs to look like once it was all over. I already knew my weaknesses, speed and strength. If sprinters are Porsche, and long distance runners are a Camry, than I am a golf cart, with only one speed. When I think I am going "fast" I am about a ten minute mile, when I think I am slow and steady I am only about thirty seconds slower. As for strength, after two babies, my arm muscles have been beefed up from lifting the girls, my core is soft.

This week I took it slow. It felt good to go out and just run, no distance in mind, just hit the pavement. There was a dip in my mood, the crabbiness that comes when I don't get enough sweat in during the day. I started formulating a plan for the winter months (I am sure I will adjust it as I need to). Speed, hills, one long"ish"run, and cross training. The problem with the whole speed thing is that I had no idea what a "fast mile" looked like for me. 

This morning, while the girls were napping and Justin was chopping down trimming our rhododendron trees, I laced up and headed over to a neighborhood park. It has a paved path around it, with slight hills. I did a slow jog around the perimeter to establish the distance of one lap, about .4. I changed my pandora station from JB to Beastie Boys (it felt a little bit more hardcore), swallowed my pride (there was an audience of middle age men playing soccer), and set off. I ran at what felt like 80% for exactly one mile. My trusty Garmin said 8:34. That my friends, is my starting point, my pace to beat.

Here are my questions and I would love your responses...

  • What is your favorite speed workout?
  • How often do you do a speed workout?
  • Have you noticed a difference in your running with a speed workout mixed in?


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Cupcake Classic Virtual Race

Last week I signed up to run the Cupcake Classic virtual race to celebrate fellow running blogger, Run with Jess's 37th birthday! It's a women's fun run of 3.7 miles to be completed during the week of October 17-23 (this week) and there are prizes to be won! She even assigned everyone a bib number and emailed a bib to print off where we could write in our name and number. I figured I may as well participate as it would give me good motivation to get out there and run after Sunday's half marathon.

I had planned on waiting to let my legs recover from the half marathon but then I got a spurt of motivation and decided I would do it yesterday (Wednesday) while my daughter napped. It was 62 degrees and sunny with some fairly significant winds. The wind drove me nuts but I figured it probably kept me cooler and from sweating profusely than if it hadn't been there. I'm not going to lie, once I started running I wanted to be done. My knees and hamstring were throbbing after mile 1 and I was running fairly fast (for me) just because I wanted to get it over with, so I was tired from the get go. I regretted not waiting until Friday. But I didn't give up and completed my 3.7 mile run in honor of Run with Jess's birthday.  Happy birthday!

I ran 3.7 miles in 35:50 with a pace of 9:40. 

You get extra points if you send a picture, so I had to!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Girlfriend's Half (Jess)

Race report: October

It was so fun to read Katie's perspective of the race yesterday. We didn't get much time to process post race because our families were waiting for their mums... here are some thoughts from me. 

Katie came over Saturday afternoon to chat, hang with our families, and also pick up our race packets. It was nice going the day before--I knew just where to go Sunday morning when I was only half awake. I ate a yummy dinner Saturday night of chicken, kale salad, and brown rice (6 miles in I realized I had not eaten enough, I was HUNGRY!) 

Before bed, Mackenzie and I sprawled out on the kitchen floor with markers, stickers, and blindingly pink poster board. I shamelessly made my own sign and Mack colored to her heart's content. I laid out the girls' outfits, pink in support of breast cancer awareness of course, and also their running shirts Katie had gifted them. I packed snacks and bottles for the girls and laid out everything for me. From race outfit, to safety pins, I knew I hadn't forgotten anything.  I headed to bed and tried to relax with my book. I got up again and wrote Justin a two page letter, complete with numbered bullets of all the race info he needed to know. I felt a little better, and drifted off to sleep with butterflies and a silly grin.

I had my usual long run breakfast (remind me to tell you later of the french toast fail) English muffin, peanut butter, banana, and coffee. I had pictured getting up and slipping out the front door before anyone in the house knew I was gone...but of course the whole brood was awake and running around when I finally stumbled out the door to go pick up Katie. 

Funny side note- Katie and I were not planning on being twins on race day! We had tried but I couldn't find a pink shirt I loved (read "cheap"), so on a whim I grabbed a clearance Nike dry fit at Fred Meyer. I snapped a photo and sent it to Katie, only to find out she had the exact same shirt! Woohoo! Matchy matchy after all!

Katie and I arrived early enough to walk through the vendors and check things out. I got all flustered and embarrassed when I realized one of the authors (Sarah) of Run Like a Mother, was there. I stammered through a hello. Katie, laughed and explained to Sarah I was a little starstruck. I SO was!
I also spotted Amanda, from Runninghood, but again was too embarrassed to say hello! Oh, silly Jessica!

Sunday morning was cool but I decided to ditch my fleece and jump around with the other 3,000 women warming up. The only complaint I would say about the entire race was that the beginning was a little unorganized. After the start (which was the crowd counting down from 10-1), 3,000 women funneled through the starting archway, all trying to find their stride, make some elbow room, and get going. It was a bit of a mess! And I was worried somebody near me was going to trip (who am I kidding, I was worried I was going to trip!)

The race was self-proclaimed "one of the Northwest's most beautiful courses", and I 100% agree. It was a crisp, slightly cloudy morning-perfect for a run. The first few miles ticked by quickly. I love that about race day, you can always count on adrenaline to carry you through those first few. I noticed that my trusty Garmin was about .2 off the posted miles. Not sure what that was about, maybe bad satellite or a short course?? 
By mile four I needed to pee. Of course. I was in a pickle...I didn't want to pee my pants (well duh!), but I also was loving running beside Katie. We had opened it up for us to go at our own pace before hand, but suddenly I was willing to forsake my bladder, and if I peed my pants, forsake my pride, in order to stick with my best friend. We pulled off at one point to use a restroom but when we saw the lines, we headed back out.

At mile six I put on my tunes. I was a little frustrated with my new armband/ipod holder. I couldn't adjust the volume and didn't want to stop to mess with it. My Bieber station wasn't as great as it's usual awesomeness, but I think I was starting to hit a wall. I was hungry and not really wanting to chug my tangerine Powerade gel. It should be renamed Powerade goo...'cuz it is goo-gross! I gulped it down and chased it with some water at one of the stations.

Mile nine I started to hurt. I was doubting my training, cursing my dinner, hating my gel. Katie nudged me at one point, reminding me to breathe. Mile ten was a blur. We were climbing up through Fort Vancouver. Mile eleven I tore out my ear buds, Katie nodded (I think she liked my company), and we dug deep to finish. We were both focused and hurting, Katie's knees and my everything. I felt like I was totally being held together by the fact Katie was at my side. Our feet hitting the pavement stride for stride, arms pumping in rhythm, my breath matching hers, so grateful to be carried mentally by my sweet friend those last few painful miles. 

A lady jogged by in the opposite direction telling us we were two blocks away. We crossed the overpass and sped up into downtown. We turned the corner. Peopled were now lining the streets cheering. Calling to us by name (it was on our race bibs). Telling us to run. Shouting that we were almost there. Yelling to us to go! go! go! I spotted Justin in his orange hunting beanie. I saw Mackenzie shouting for me waving the sign we had made. Katie and I kicked it up and rounded the corner. We crossed the finish line together, arms raised in victory.

I grabbed my finisher's medal necklace (such a lady's event) and wobbled to the honey buckets. Thank Jesus my mommy bladder held. We met up with our families and hugged and took pictures. I was so happy to be done. I was even happier to get in line for some grub. I saw Amanda from Runninghood again, and limped over to say hi. I saw her run past during the race, headed towards the finish before I had even turned the halfway point. She is so fast! It was fun meeting a bloggy person face to face. Justin left with the girls and Katie and I went to hunt down the free massages we had heard about (and the fudge too). It was an amazing feeling. My joints were achy and I felt bad for Kate, having to sit in a car for three hours post race. We made our way to my car, hugged, and headed in opposite directions. Suddenly, it was over. For the rest of the day (I even debated wearing my finisher's tee to church that night), I felt like I wanted to let everyone know I had just ran 13 miles. 

At school on Monday I showed my necklace to my fourth graders, they gave cheered and clapped and whooped. My thoughts exactly.


Final Time: 2:18:53

***I shaved over five minutes off my 2010 Eugene Half***

Monday, October 17, 2011

Race Recap: Girlfriends Half Marathon (Katie)

I did it! Months of training, 13.1 miles and 2+ hours later, I completed my very first half marathon! Two things are for sure: 1. I could not have done it without Jess and 2. this will definitely not be my last half marathon.

The 3 nights prior to the race, I did not sleep well. I know I was nervous and that definitely contributed to the insomnia, however, the night before the race was the worst. We had traveled to Portland and were staying at my sisters house. She has a guest room which is handy but it means that we then share a room with our 18 month old. She was recovering from a cold so hadn't been sleeping that great and was waking herself up coughing often, that combined with the fact that she could see me from her crib (and constantly yelled out "mommy! mommy!") plus my husband being hopped up on night time cold meds so he wasn't even aware that anything was happening made for a pretty miserable night. All that to say, I was strongly relying on adrenaline to get me through the race and my furthest running distance ever.

On the morning of the race, I woke up late so didn't have time for coffee (which helps with my running if I have it early enough), so had to quickly eat some breakfast and get dressed before Jess was picking me up. Luckily we had planned to go early and ended up having plenty of time. We were able to walk around, scope out the place and see hundreds upon hundreds of women ready to get their race on. The lines to the porta-potties were insanely long (of course!) and it was fun to check out what everyone had chosen to wear for game day. Lots of unique breast cancer shirts and even some women in aprons and pearls. Jess and I decided to keep it simple in our matching light purple Nike shirts and black pants.

Now, on to the race details. It was a chilly morning in Vancouver, WA. About 50 degrees and overcast with a decent breeze keeping us very cool before the 9am start time. I was wearing a jacket and decided I would toss it to my husband at the starting line (a good call). After a fun warm-up, we finally lined up and the race began. It was a slow start as 3200 women funneled through to cross the start line, and we were off!

Here we come!

All smiles (thanks Jess for handing off my jacket)

There we go!

And the fun began. It was strange going into it and thinking "okay, now I have to do this for 13.1 miles". Honestly, it seemed like an impossible task especially when I got a side ache before we even passed the Mile 1 marker. Whenever I was feeling weak or tired or like I couldn't do it, inside my head, I would say to myself "you will run 13 miles, you are running 13 miles" and that would give me the boost I needed to carry on in that moment (I certainly think my doula training came in handy and applied perfectly).  They had water/gatorade/sport gel stations every 2 miles which was perfect. I took either some water or gatorade at each and I think around mile 6, I took a sport gel. Turns out, I did not eat enough breakfast and about half way through my stomach was growling! I was so hungry and so excited to finish the race just so I could eat.

Jess and I ended up running together the entire way, which was not expected. We had both given each other the freedom to take off or slow down if needed but I think we both got comfortable having each other there, maybe because we had been training and planning this together for so long or maybe we were truly relying on each other to make it to the end, either way it just felt right to start and finish the race together.

Passing the Mile 7 marker and knowing we were more than half way done was a great relief. At Mile 9 Jess and I decided to take a quick walk to catch our breath as one of us said "only 4 more miles!" I wished it was only 2. Two seemed doable, four seemed long. After about a 60 second break, we were off again. We did this a total of three times, at mile 6, mile 9 and mile 11 (also a quick one at mile 12). These little rests made all the difference to me. They were short enough to not mess up our pace or to convince my body that I was done but they were long enough to give me the relief I needed to continue on. I knew before I even started that I was going to need these breaks, so I had already given myself permission to take them when needed which helped me to not feel like I was weak or failing.

I had been having hamstring issues over the past several weeks so I was honestly nervous about how it would feel after pounding the pavement for so many miles. Luckily my hamstring, though sore, didn't really bother me too much. My knees, however, were aching bad for probably the second half of the run. It hurt to turn corners or to quickly hop up or down a curb, it was brutal! It didn't stop me and didn't mess with my pace but I was certainly hurting.

As I saw the Mile 12 marker, I knew we could do it and that the end was so close. It was a looong mile but as we got closer and closer to the end, the crowds got bigger, the cheering got louder and the encouragement was coming from every direction. I don't care if those people weren't cheering for me, I took everything I could get and it motivated me to the finish line. As we rounded our second to last corner, our husbands and kids were there to cheer us on; snapping pictures and shouting our names. I was so happy and excited and even felt a little teary, I had done it! One last turn and a final push to the finish line and we were DONE! We both threw our hands in the air and finished with smiles on our faces. What a rush, what a relief, what an accomplishment!

I'm not sure what our official time was yet but the clock at the finish line said 02:19:55 which probably means it was a little faster than that since we didn't cross the start line until a couple minutes after the clock started.
The final push to the finish line

I did it!
Done! 13.1 miles complete
Relieved and proud (and tired!)

Though my throbbing knees are a reminder, I am having a hard time grasping that I did this yesterday. I cannot believe I accomplished my goal and ran a half marathon and actually had fun doing it. I feel very proud. And though I cannot even imagine running double this distance and doing a marathon, I can say that I look forward to another half marathon sometime in the not too distant future.

My daughter (her shirt says "Run Mommy Run")

Things I learned:
  • Eat a larger breakfast before such a long run (and coffee if time allows)
  • Strengthen legs between now and next race (and continuously)
  • Carry shot blocks, starburst or gummy bears because those gels are nasty
  • Don't carry water, what a pain (I didn't but lots of people did and it seemed awkward)
  • Give myself more time to stretch and recover before sitting in a car for 3 straight hours
  • Always run with your best friend (together, even if not side-by-side)
  • Have fun and be proud!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Countdown Continues

I have always wanted to run a half marathon, it has been a goal of mine, a dream even, that I would "one day" accomplish. "One day" being when I felt ready, when I was in better shape, maybe when we know we aren't going to have anymore kids and I can focus on myself a bit more. So when Jess told me in July that she was going to do the Girlfriends Half Marathon in October and that I should do it with her, my first instinct was to laugh. There is no way I could possibly run a half marathon in just 3 short months. I was not prepared, I wasn't ready, I couldn't afford it, no way, no how! But after some persistence and encouragement from Jess, I finally came to the conclusion, "why not?". I always said I wanted to do it, so why not now? What's really stopping me? So I decided to go for it even though I was scared and nervous and not at all confident in my ability to complete this goal.

Now, 3 months later, amidst my fear and doubt I am actually excited for this upcoming race. Up until a few days ago, I didn't think I would ever be ready, let alone excited! Sure, I have said I was excited before but in my heart of hearts I wasn't sure I meant it...until now. I am truthfully looking forward to the experience, the challenge and to the sense of accomplishment that I expect to feel at the end. Plus, running in an all girls half marathon with your best friend, what could be better?!

Tomorrow afternoon, the husband and I are packing up the kid and heading to Portland to spend some time with friends and family before the race in Vancouver on Sunday morning. Jess and I plan to go get our race packets on Saturday and our little families get to spend some time together during the day. It's rare that we can all get together so it will be a nice treat this weekend and a great way to pre-celebrate the big day!

I have really enjoyed having this half marathon to train for. It has given me a sense of purpose and new sense of motivation (once I signed up and paid my dues, I had no choice but to be motivated!). Though my daughter is so wonderful and so fulfilling, it's been nice to have something that is all my own and something I can do for me. Once this half is over, I want to keep running races, as much as possible (I just need to figure out how to get sponsored so I don't have to keep paying all these race fees out of my own pocket!). Jess and I have discussed that we would both like to focus a little more on building our strength and endurance after this race. It's easy to get caught up in the mileage and spend most of the workout hours running, but we both realize that we have some work to be done when it comes to the strength department of our bodies. I know we will continue to motivate and encourage one another as we prepare for whatever comes next. I really want to come up with ways to work on my strength in the comfort of my own home. A gym membership isn't really an option for me right now so I'll need to get creative (suggestions/tips welcome!).

3 days until the 2011 Girlfriends Half Marathon in Vancouver, WA.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Humble Pie

In the last few weeks I must have been real hungry...cause I ate some major humble pie.

Scene One:
It was my last long run before tapering for the half marathon. Thanks to my trusty Garmin I knew I needed to tack on an extra .5, my preplanned loop was not quite as long as I had originally thought. It was getting close to dusk and it was raining (surprise, surprise). I had been rocking out to my favorite running station on Pandora...which brings me to my second confession on the blog so far (remember last week I admitted I have to bribe motivate myself to run?)... I not only listen to, but I LOVE my Justin Bieber station on Pandora. Okay, I said it, judge me. 
Back to that rainy, cold evening...
   So, I am in the groove, picking up my pace, feeling confident and like I got this runnin' thing....
when WHAM-O!!!! I trip on the uneven sidewalk (yes, I am blaming the sidewalk) and catch major air. Jessica is airborne. And then I land. On all fours. 
My eyes sting with tears and my breath is knocked out of me for a few seconds. A homeless woman leaves her refuge from the rain and shuffles over to see if I am okay. She had been standing with a handful of other homeless people that had all found shelter under the roof of the bike garage at the library. They all witnessed the great fall. I could tell they were not sure what to do, laugh, come over, pretend they didn't see. As if you could miss a grown woman flying through the air screaming. Oh that's right, I forgot to mention...I screamed when I fell. 
So I slowly, shuffled home, texting Justin about my fall so he would be ready to baby me upon my arrival home. Humble pie with a cherry on top.

Scene Two:
You know how in a movie there is always this dorky kid who tries to act the part, but is mostly just a poser (picture the dude with too short of basketball shorts in the movie, Made of Honor). Oh, dorky kid, I can SO relate.
This last weekend I was at a women's retreat for Young Life (the non-profit my husband works for) wives and staff women. I announced I was going running and another wife volunteered to go with me. Normally I would have gone out alone, not wanting to try and run with people way out of my running league, but I have been training for a half marathon, so I guess I was thinking I was hot stuff. The other wife and I headed out. It is important to note that I am decked OUT! I have on my nike spandex running capris, my Eugene marathon finisher technical tee (even though I only finished the half) and a CamelBak (I was testing it out at a option for hydration). To make a loooong running story short, she schooled me. This sweet lady, who hasn't been out for a run "in months" totally schooled me. And the icing on this humble pie, was the tale end of our run she coached me through a sprint. Encouraging me over my wailing and gasping breath to pump my arms,focus and for goodness sake...BREATHE. 

So I just have to know running friends, have you ever ate it? I mean humble pie, of course.


Monday, October 10, 2011

10 miles?

On Saturday I set out to run ten miles in preparation for my half marathon coming up on Sunday. I had never run 10 miles...ever. But everything was set and I was feeling good. My husband told me to go and run as long as I needed and he would take our daughter to the park, feed her and put her down for her nap, so I knew I didn't need to be back for anything. I was prepared with Shot Bloks, my iPod and a new running top as I stared ten miles in the face.

When I stepped out my front door I could not have asked for better running weather: blue skies, sunny, mid-50 degrees and a slight breeze. Off I went...until I had pee. Only about 1.5 miles in and I had to pee! Are you kidding me?! With 8.5 miles left I knew there was no way I could hold it, so I looped back and ran home to use the facilities which I am glad I did because I felt much better afterward and ready to really hit the ground running now.  I ran and I ran. I use my iPhone straped to my arm and a running app (RunKeeper) to track my progress so it's a bit difficult to keep a constant check on my mileage, for me this is a good thing as I would probably check it every 30 seconds if I could. I ended up stopping to walk about 2 or 3 times to pop a quick Shot Blok, check my mileage and change what I was listening to (or turn it off all together to run in silence), I maybe stopped for about 30 seconds before I was off again.

Overall, I felt really good. I've always known that running is just as much a mental sport as a physical sport but I think I truly grasped it on this run. Because I was in a mental space to run 10 miles, I knew I could do it. I wasn't going to try and run 10 miles, I was going to run 10 miles. I had nothing that I needed to rush home for, the weather wasn't making me too hot or too cold, and I could just fully enjoy the run at my own pace and accomplish my goal. However, as mile 8 hit I started to feel like I was almost done and in the home stretch and my body started shutting down, I was breathing heavier and uneven, my feet were beginning to drag and my mind was convinced that I was almost done when in reality I still had 2 miles to go. Instead of heading in the direction of home, I turned around and picked myself up to get through the final miles.

At about mile 9, I was thinking how lucky I was to be looking at the beautiful mountains while running on this gorgeous, clear day and that I should quickly take photo to post on the blog. The RunKeeper app has a camera button built into it but I had never used it before, how difficult could it be? I stopped, pressed the button, snapped a photo, saved it and began to strap the phone back onto my arm when I noticed that my mileage and pace had gone BLANK! The stopwatch part was still moving but everything else was 0:00. I had no idea what to do or how to get it back. I tried a couple buttons but nothing worked or brought it back. In my anger I sprinted towards home and just hoped and prayed that when I officially stopped the run it would all magically reappear and I will have accomplished 10 miles. So when I made it home and pushed the button to complete my run everything reappeared! I was so relieved except for the fact that I had only run 9.47 miles. I tried to restart the run but I don't think that's an option or at least I couldn't figure it out. I was disappointed and relieved all at the same time and just decided to be done with my run regardless. So I didn't quite make my 10 mile run but I am calling it "close enough" due to technical difficulties.
Here is the crooked and not-so-great photo that ruined my run!

Less than a week until the Girlfriend's Half Marathon in Vancouver, WA. After this 9.47 mile run I can honestly say that I feel much more prepared and excited for 13.1! Bring it on!


Saturday, October 8, 2011

One More Week: do I have it in me?

In a little more than one week I will be running my very first half marathon. I can't believe it. I am nervous and excited and very afraid that I am not at all prepared. A recent hamstring injury set me back a little bit but I have stretched, iced and strengthened it as best I could and I think it should be fine for the half. The only problem is...I am only up to about 8 miles. I am determined to run 10 miles today even if it kills me. My husband is on toddler duty and I will be back when 10 miles is complete! As for 13.1 in a weeks time? I am just praying that adrenaline, determination and my running buddy, Jess, will help get me to that finish line.

The Girlfriends Half Marathon is taking place in Vancouver, WA on October 16th. Since I am used to running in Central Oregon at a higher elevation, I know that running at sea level will help my lungs get the oxygen they need. I just really hope my body follows suit and my legs can carry me all the way. Having my husband and daughter cheering me on will certainly help, too. I am excited for my daughter to sport her new "Run Mommy Run" shirt that I got her recently. The only thing I wonder is if this race will give me a sense of accomplishment and a new motivation to continue running half marathons (and maybe even a marathon one day!) or if it will knock me down a peg or two, make me feel defeated and confirm my suspicion that I am only a 10k runner. I guess we'll see!


Friday, October 7, 2011

12 in 12

I have a confession. I know it is a bit early in this bloggy relationship to start airing dirty laundry...but here goes:
I can be completely LOST when it comes to running. Let me clarify, I don't mean like "where in the heck am I????", more like, "oh, I think I will go for a far have I gone? A mile and a half...let's call 'er good". Directionless would be another name for it.

So, I am constantly coming up with little ploys to keep myself going. I also had a baby 8 months ago and the weight was not coming off as easily as it did with the first. I needed something to get my buns in gear.  Naturally (insert sarcasm here), training for a half marathon was the next step. I can't remember now if I asked Katie to run it with me, or if she just offered but it wasn't long before she agreed to be my running buddy from afar. We already knew we were a good fit running together from a few previous races, and we are always scheming ways to see each other. So running a half together was just another excuse to put a weekend on the calendar for just us. 

I had thought that training for a half would keep me busy...but then I took it a step farther...and the twelve races in twelve months was decided on. My husband agreed (cause we all know that without the hubs on board, you might as well not even lace up right?) and the hunt for races began. For race reports for July-September check out: July August September
July (Deschutes Dash 10k)

 August (Hualin' Aspen 7 miler)

 September (Fairhaven Waterfront 15k)

Next Sunday, the 16th I will be doing my October race....the half marathon that started it all.