Archive | January, 2013

post-long run doubts

20 Jan

Eric and I are in Buffalo for the weekend.  Eric is my sherpa, since he signed me up (without permission) for the Buffalo Marathon.  Which means that I pretty much call the shots for these long runs–I decide the when and where, and he goes with me and does things like talk me through the rough moments and guard the porta potty and protect me from any potential bad guys out there.

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So last night I passed out on his mom’s couch sometime around 10 (I think).  He said it was funny because I was laying all sideways (even though I was on the recliner part of the sectional, so my legs were in front of me but my upper body was to the side, if that makes any sense).  I vaguely heard the weather reports on the 11 o’clock news and Eric’s exclamation about the high wind warnings.  I put them aside in my grogginess, thinking that I was dreaming.  I was apparently exhausted, because I got up around 11:30 (i think) and went to bed, but I don’t really remember.  I don’t think I brushed my teeth and I know I didn’t wash my face, because I woke up with mascara under my eyes.

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It was SUPER windy when I rolled over around 7.  I had the most god-awful cramps in the world (TMI?  sorry.)  I curled myself into a little ball and pulled the covers up under my chin.  I just laid there, half asleep, thinking about skipping the run altogether.  “I can always go tomorrow” is a really good excuse, right???  I was still in that half-awake state when Eric said “yo you gotta get up.  we gotta get going.  let’s go.”  I was cranky.  Uber cranky.  But I figured a good run might cure that, I could at least attempt a run and go tomorrow if it were really that bad, and exercise supposedly helps cramps, so there was no reason not to go.

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So I ask what the temperature is, and Eric checks and incredulously says “41! I am overdressed and have nothing else to wear!”  So now he’s cranky, too.  Whatever.  We get ready and head out the door around 7:30.  We drove to a little park that’s about a mile from my parents’ house to park.  I figured that was a good starting location because if we needed to add a mile or two, we could do it in that park (it’s only good for maybe a mile because it’s so tiny.)

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We set out and realize the wind is at our backs.  Sweet!  We’re cruising along, and I’m trying not to think about the fact that this easy early run means a really tough last couple of miles into the wind and mostly uphill.  No matter.  We headed from park #1 to park #2, Losson Park.  It was just over 3 miles to get there.  We got in, Eric took a picture of the flag whipping in the wind, I ate a delicious shot block (I don’t get why these are any different than gummy bears or skittles, but whatever.  look at me being all “real runner” and eating “real runner” food).  We carried on.  The trails had a dusting of snow, but they were mostly great.  There are a lot of boardwalks throughout the park, and those were a little slick.  On our way back to the car around mile 8, I almost slipped and took out Eric, too.  Anyway, Losson is one of my favorite places to run, and we had a nice 2 mile jaunt through the park.  We got to the other end of the park and took the road about a half mile to another little park, the Reinstein Nature Preserve.  There are a lot of small loop trails through there, many around little ponds.  We did a mile-ish through there, coming across a creeper man (not dressed for a walk in the woods, wouldn’t look at us, eric finally said hi as we were passing and he just gave us a weird smile).  We left the park, this woman was coming in, Eric said “I think she just checked me out.  You should go fight her.”  I said, “I’m too tired for all that.”  We laughed and went back to Losson.  We backtracked through the park, then started our 3 miles into the wind, on a slightly uphill incline.  It wasn’t too bad except when the winds gusted, and then it was awful.  We were at mile 9 and this guy  comes around a corner at the same time that we were getting to it.  We wave hello. He doesn’t wave back.  He looked to be going about the same pace as us as he ran towards the corner (maybe even slower), but then he took off–I think to race us.  It took everything I had to hold it in check.  I had to remind myself that I was 9 miles into a 12-14 miler.  We were right on his heels for the 2/10 of a mile or so to the next corner.  He hit the corner and stopped to walk.  And I felt triumphant.  Mofo wanted to race, but I would’ve crushed him AND not had to walk AND it would’ve been after already having done 9.  Part of me wished I had gone with him to show him what was up (since he kind of inadvertently challenged us), but mostly I was glad I had kept to  MY plan.  And I’m sure he thinks he’s bad because he “beat us” in a quarter mile race.

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We made a quick pit stop at my parents’ house around mile 10.  Getting hugs from my baby sister was a good pick-me-up.  We ran the last mile to the car together and Eric called it quits.  We had gone 11.25.  I was so tempted to get in the car, too.  But I knew I needed to do a 12-miler.  I headed into Birchfield alone, banged out the last 3/4 mile and called it a day.

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We had a good visit with my grandparents today, then went to visit his dad in the hospital.  We were close to part of the race course, so Eric pulled it up and we were looking at the route.  And I started to freak out a little bit.  26.2 miles is a long freaking way.  2 hours this morning felt like an eternity.  4 hours is double that.  Oh. My. God.  Can I really do this again???  Adding fuel to the fire, one of my twitter friends reminded me that we are 18 weeks away.  Last time I counted the weeks til D-day, we were over 20 away and I had nothing to worry about.  Is that even enough time to train????  Oh. My. God.

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I know I will be fine.  I have so much time, I am training in not-so-favorable winter conditions, which will make me much stronger for the spring.  I am getting more and more mentally tough–I dragged my butt out of bed, ran although I wasn’t feeling well (I am still feeling pretty awful), and I did the last part of my run alone when I could’ve backed out.  I’ve got this.  But I’m still a little scared.

at least i will see beautiful things like this sunrise over one of the ponds this morning...marathon training!

what is beautiful?

14 Jan

I had this whole blog written about my super-stellar weekend.  But the end of the blog got me to thinking, because I wrote about how I felt beautiful today at the end of Fit1.  Not beautiful like I do when I get dolled up, do my hair, make-up, wear nice clothes.  Obviously, working-out-beautiful is a different kind of feeling than all of that.  But it’s almost better–more authentic for sure.  And it made me happy to acknowledge that beauty doesn’t have to mean “dolled up” and that strong is beautiful.

i am in love with this.

Maybe this is why I like working out so much.  Because the feeling at the end of a workout, when you’ve just pushed your body to do something hard, something most people would not even try, because it IS so hard, or when you’ve gone past a previous accomplishment, went further, faster, better…it’s beautiful.  Bettering yourself feels good.  Working hard feels good.  Doing things that other people think you can’t do feels good.  Doing things that YOU think you can’t do feels good.  Telling that voice in my head to shut up…that feels good.  I am tired tonight.  I was up early yesterday to run 11 miles.  I did an hour and 15 minute full-body fit1 workout today.   We finished up, we were under the Ford Street bridge, I was covered in mud, had been laying on God-knows-what (I’m still trying not to think about it), I was sweaty (it was 50 degrees today! woot!).  I should’ve felt disgusting, but then I thought about the running, squats, pull ups, push ups, ab work and other things I’d done.  And I felt great.  Happy, strong, and beautiful.

the crew who worked out at fit1 this morning!

I have had body image issues for a long time.  What woman doesn’t???  There are images everywhere telling us what we should be.  How we should look.  The things we should do to be a better woman.  Working out allows me to let go of those things.  It allows me to stop thinking about what I should do and focus on the moment.  I think I have a healthier body image now than I ever have had in my life.  That doesn’t mean that I still don’t wish for a six pack or smaller thighs or more cut arms.  That doesn’t mean that I will stop working toward those things.  It just means that I am happy with where I am and what my body can do.  I am happy with pushing myself to the next level.  And I am excited to see where this body of mine can take me next.

project 333

10 Jan

So I’ve been reading, in my minimalism research, about this cool thing called project 333.  There are various other off-shoots of it, but the idea is the same.  You pick a set number of clothes (in many cases 33), then wear ONLY those things for 3 months (hence the number 333).  Different people allow different things to go “uncounted”–namely accessories, workout clothes, pajamas and underwear.

love some of the different ways she mixes pieces

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I have been looking at these things for quite a while now.  As with most of my schemes, it takes quite some time for me to actually make a decision and move forward.  (Side note: I am kind of a bad decision-maker.)  But I think I’m ready to give this a try.  When I first saw this idea, all I could think was “only 33 items????”  But then I really started to think about what things I wear most often, and I realized that I really only wear a few things, and I love  even fewer things.  This project may be a good way for me to weed out the things I dislike and update with classic pieces that will work in different seasons and that I will really love.  I’ve been trying this year to update with more “grown up” clothes.  I’ve been trying to avoid buying things just because they’re on sale, or just because I “kind of” like it.  I’ve been trying to eliminate things that no longer fit me since I’ve lost weight “just in case” I gain it back. The weight loss thing is kind of a big one right now.  My mother gave me some of her old pants the other day.  They were size 5s.  I said, “there’s no way these will fit me.”  She insisted I try them.  And lo and behold.  They fit (snugly–motivation for me to lose those last 5 pounds and eat clean so my bloat-age goes away–PCOS sucks–one serving of white carbs and I get the pregnancy-bump without the pregnancy).  I have been wearing 8s and 10s from before I lost weight.  Yeah–not cool.  I’ve known they don’t fit great, but I hate pants shopping–short, stubby legs make for bad pants-shopping experiences.  In any event, I am saying no to poorly fitting clothes that I don’t love.  I’ve purged a lot of clothing already, but I’m ready to clean out even more.

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So this weekend, I am going to pick my 33 items.  Here are my rules:

1.  33 items only.  Everything else is off limits.  I will do the first challenge for 30 days.  3 months seems like a long time to me, and I’m all about setting smaller goals that are easily attainable.  A month seems long to me anyway.  So we’ll see how it goes and then I can always extend it.

2.  I will not be counting jewelry in my 33 items.  Some people do, but I’m not.  I WILL be counting shoes (I only wear a couple pairs of shoes, anyway).  I am pretty sure I’m also going to count scarves and belts, but not completely decided on that. I will let you know this weekend.

3.  I will not count underwear/hosiery in my 33 items (that would be gross).  I will also not count pajamas.

4.  I will not count workout clothes in my 33 items.  However, I cannot wear workout clothes as regular clothes (although I don’t really ever do that anyway, but it’s worth mentioning).

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So I think those are my rules.  If there is anything to update, I will write it later when I post what my 33 items will be.  My friends  should join me in this challenge!!!  Check out these links for more info/inspiration:

Project 333

30 for 30: Wardrobe Remix

How to Build a Remixable Wardrobe (I love this girl’s sense of fashion!)

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Sooooo who’s with me????  33 items for 30 days????

her sense of style is amazing

and then i was sick again

7 Jan

This weekend, Eric accompanied me on my long run on Saturday morning.  I’ve been struggling through runs throughout the holidays–due to illness, weather, etc.  I wasn’t sure what to anticipate for this run.  At the outset, I was miserable.  That first mile felt awful–it was cold, I was stiff and tired, I didn’t know if I wanted to run 10 miles.  By mile 2, everything was fine.  I was hanging in at 9:30ish (sometimes faster, sometimes a little slower) pace.  Amazing!  I finished the 10 miles feeling like I could easily do another 5 miles at that pace.  This route we ran was much hillier than the marathon course.  I’m feeling more optimistic about my running…

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Then, just like that, I am sick again.  We spent the weekend in the hospital with Eric’s dad.  I’m pretty sure I must have picked something up there, despite my obsessive hand washing.  I am a mess right now.  No fun.  My nose hurts from wiping it so much.  We didn’t have any dayquil left (that’s how I got through the day today ha), so I took a nyquil.  I’m about to pass out now.  And I don’t have a functioning inhaler, so I can’t go for my scheduled run.  Lame.  Alas.  Hopefully tomorrow I get back on the wagon (if I’m feeling better and get my inhaler script refilled).

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So yay for a good run and boo for sickness making me put running on hold yet again…

sometimes…

4 Jan

Sometimes, the thought of running another marathon still scares me. It’s still unbelievable to me that I’ll be running 26.2 miles.  I mean, I wouldn’t even want to drive 26 miles to get some places.  That’s a long freaking way. Or more importantly that I’m going to be running so many miles in training.  I’m not sure if the marathon or the training for the marathon is freaking me out more.  Maybe I just need a little self pep talk.

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It’s far away.  I have plenty of time to train.  I was feeling really good about things.  But I’ve had a couple of rough runs in the past 2 weeks.  Things just not going as planned.  It’s snowy, so it’s hard to run.  The cold is killing my asthma.  I was coming down with a stomach bug (unbeknownst to me) so my 800’s didn’t go well.  I know on the one hand that these are all legitimate problems, that winter running is not going to be easy, but I will come back a stronger runner in the spring.  That being said, I don’t want to make excuses.  I want to train strong and hard. I want every run to go well.  I know they won’t all feel “great,” but I want the aftermath to feel great.  And the past few runs, it hasn’t.

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So now I’m kinda scared again.  A few weeks ago, I posted this on my other blog, so I’m going to re-post to remind myself that I’ve got this.  I don’t need to worry.  I need to train and trust in the training and know that I am strong. That the training isn’t always going to be easy or fun, but that’s what will make it worth it in the end.  I am capable.  I am going to be fine.  I am going to kick ass.

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Negative Thought #1:  What if I can’t train for this.

Reason To STFU:  I’ve already trained for this distance.  Through a HOT summer.  I had no idea what to expect.  I’m training in the winter–cooler temps.  I know what to expect.  I feel so much better prepared to train this go-round.  I trained for my first marathon almost exclusively alone (Eric DID go for a lot of long runs and parts of long runs towards the end, but most of my training was independent).  I now have a plethora of people I can run with should I need company for long runs.  We have tons of friends who run ultras–they log TONS of miles on weekends.  I will have no problem finding people to run with me.  Hooray.  I am so busy all the time with work.  I hate it.  This will force me to focus on what’s important.  And that is NOT work.  I contractually work long hours.  I don’t need to work extra hours.  I need to RUN!

Negative Thought #2:  This is going to hurt so bad.

Reason To STFU:  The truth is, i AM going to hurt.  I could barely walk after Corning.  It was miserable for a couple of days.  But at the same time, it felt GOOD.  (click on the link for a hilarious video about post-marathon pain)  Training hurt sometimes.  But it was rare.  It was tiring.  But I’m already tired, so whatever.  Saturday afternoon naps are nice.  Run 20 miles, ice, massage, stretch, nap.  Not a bad way to spend a day I suppose.  This will give me good reason to slow myself down a bit with some other things, in particular work.  And when I am hurting, I will make Eric give me a massage.  AND i have compression socks now.  So hopefully that will help, too.  I’m actually curious to see how they work on marathon aches and pains.

Negative Thought #3:  What if I don’t run well on race day?

Reason to STFU:  If I train hard, i just have to trust the training.  And ultimately, running a marathon is an accomplishment, regardless of finishing time.  Most people will never even toe the line.  I think I lose sight of that because so many of our friends now are runners, so it seems like it’s “not that big a deal.”  But the truth is, training for a marathon IS a huge deal.  Probably a bigger deal than the actual race, to be honest.  So i trust in my training and I go with it.  100,000 things can change how race day goes–weather, body issues, sleep issues, etc.  All i can control is my preparation.  I need to focus on this–in EVERY aspect of my life.  Stressing out and worrying does not help ANYTHING.  So i will put forth my best effort for training.  and then i will tear it up at the end of May when all of my hard work pays off.

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So remind me of all of this when I have these moments of freak-out-ness like I am tonight.  I am a worrier.  Worrying is like rocking in a rocking chair–gives ya something to do, but gets you nowhere.  No more useless worrying.  Time to focus on the positives and learn from the negatives.  Time to train hard.  Time to trust in the training.  I’ve got this locked down.  Buffalo, you’d better watch out! I’m coming for you!