Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Mentoring Opportunity

I am excited to officially be a mentor/pacer for the Fleet Feet Winter Warriors 15K program. We had our kickoff meeting tonight and I can't wait to get out there and hit the pavement. There are scheduled runs at 6pm Thursday night and 7:30am Saturday morning each week. This is exactly what I need to keep me running outdoors throughout the week!!

I have never coached other runners before other than friends who I've helped along the way so I'm looking forward to expanding my running group and help others achieve their goals. Seeing others push themselves motivates me to write some down and strive for mine!

I recently have come to a point where I am tired of being mediocre, in the past I have been okay with being average. I am sick of the status quo and realized I need to face my fears, push myself and put everything out on the table. So here are some of the goals I have for myself next year.

  • Run a sub 26:00 5K
  • Run a sub 2:00:00 half-marathon
  • Run at least 1 marathon and PR (sub 4:50:00)
  • Complete the Fremont Sprint Triathlon sub 1:00:00
  • Finish an Olympic Distance Triathlon
How can I expect to be a coach and push others when I'm too afraid to push myself? I have been afraid of injury and failing, but I am determined to face it head on! 

Here is to a great 2013 and remaining 2012!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Festival Foods Turkey Trot

I wasn't exactly sure I was running this race until last week Friday when I finally signed up for it. I was taking it easy coming back from my minor foot injury and after I was able to run 3 miles without stopping and I felt great. I knew it wasn't going to be easy but I would be able to do the distance. And who doesn't want to feel like they are ahead on their calories on Thanksgiving!

I ran this last year and I was hoping to beat my time but I wasn't confident it would happen due to the lack of running. In order to do it I had to shoot for under 49 minutes so I was hoping I could hang just under a 10 minute mile and then speed up a little on the final mile. The course was changed this year and moved from Menasha to Appleton this year so I wasn't sure of what the streets would bring us.

Sarah picked me up at 7 am, we stopped at a gas station so I could pickup a newspaper and we headed into downtown to find a place to park. We hung out for a bit and then made our way to the Paper Valley hotel to hang out inside until it was time to get started. One final bathroom break and then we were lining up to get going. I didn't really feel nervous all morning and still felt good so I was hoping it was a good sign.

We were off and we settled into the pack and were able to pull in the first mile at about 10:03 avoiding a too fast start. I couldn't seem to get into a steady pace for the next mile and had to keep slowing myself down but then I finally caught my rhythm after mile 2 and it was smooth sailing. At mile 3 on the course you turned a corner and the people ahead of you were turning just on the opposite corner so it was fun to see the others.

At about 3.5 miles there was a generous downhill portion so I decided to stretch my legs out on the hill as I knew that going down into the flats would mean we would have to climb out of there. The mile 4 marker came up and then you saw it, the steep hill glaring down at you to tackle. This thing just kept getting steeper as you went up! I pushed through it and then it was home free to get myself to the finish. I had not stopped to walk yet and I knew I could beat my time at this point if I turned in a decent mile.I pushed my body through it even though it felt ready to give in around 4.25 miles.

I finished in 48:49 and managed to get a PR, sealing up an awesome year in which I have gotten a PR in every distance I have ever run, even though some of the distances were a first this year. I have accomplished a lot this year and I need to start thinking about my goals for next year so I can continue to improve in my running and triathlons!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Indoors vs. Outdoors

During cooler weather do you tend to hibernate indoors and churn out miles on the treadmill? I for one prefer to get in as many miles as I can outdoors. I just cannot stand running on a treadmill for more than 4-5 miles. I know it doesn't sound like that far and I don't know how some of you can do upwards of 10 miles on that thing. I don't care if I'm watching a tv or listening to tunes I just can't do it. I enjoy being outdoors even if that means running in freezing temperatures.

Once daylight savings time comes along this also equates to alot of night time running. I honestly love running at night and it's when I feel my best. It is just so peaceful and calm and somedays I like how it makes me feel like a badass! I do make sure that I am reflective as can be, wear a headlamp and a red blinking light on the back of my SPIbelt so others can see me. I live in the city so there are still streetlights on but they are very dim and just don't cut it for me. I do make sure to vary up my routes, when I run and where and I cut out any semi-shady parts of town that in the daylight wouldn't normally scare me aware. I seem to have my most enjoyable runs at nighttime and I just feel like I can keep going on forever.

I am also in love with the fact that winter is close. It means no more disgusting sweaty runs for me which is nearly impossible for me on a day that is 50 degrees or warmer. The hardest part about winter running is figuring out what to wear to keep yourself comfortable and what parts to layer. This just takes time and you will probably start off by dressing too warm. Make sure to shed the extra layers as quickly as possible and remember to dress as though it's 10 degrees warmer than it really is. The first mile may be a bit chilly but you will warm up and you can always take a hot shower when you get home!

I can't wait for the first run after a fresh snowfall, it will be such a serene run.

Are you too chicken to run at night or in the cold?

Monday, November 12, 2012

Opening New Doors

Are you the kind of person that is willing to try new things or do you tend to stick to your usuals??

I tend to stick to my routine because it's comfortable, but lately I have been opening myself up to new experiences and facing them head on. My big firsts this year for me were:

1. Completing a triathlon (just sprint distance) even though nobody I knew had ever tackled one.

2. Completing a marathon! I told myself a few years ago when I just started running I would NEVER do one, I have recently learned to not sat that word :)

3. Set a PR in every distance this year in every distance (5K, 10K, 13.1 and 26.2) except a 5 miler and 2 different sprint distances. When will that ever likely happen again??

Yesterday was also a big first for as I attempted a Hot Yoga class. This was a huge deal for me because I am not a group workout kina person. I love my alone time and usually get nervous that everyone is watching me and how horrible I am doing! So I have a major fear of working out in public. Joining a gym for the first time ever 2 years ago helped me to slowly get over it but I still don't go at peak times. I just tell myself it's because I want to be able to get on the equipment I want and not be crowded in the locker room. I have also never attempted Yoga and was so happy Sarah and I were in the same boat so I wasn't the only newbie. Thanks Kim for suggesting it!!

The weather here yesterday was rainy, windy and just crappy. I was having some stomach issues in the afternoon and was beginning to wonder if I would even make it to the class, but I was determined. I was happy I did and instantly upon walking into the studio I was already practically sweating. We began by doing like 25 of some kind of Sun Rotations and then we finally moved on to some other poses but there were still alot of Chaturanga, Downward Dog and Upward Dog in that session. I had to take a few breaks due to my arms being tired, my palms hurting and to wipe the sweat dripping from me.

Overall it was a good experience, I will definitely be trying some other yoga classes and instructors to see what I like best.

What is your favorite kind of workout outside of cardio?

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Making Some Changes

I spent this morning changing my blog over to a new email address so it's seperate from my personal email to make things easier on myself! Only bad part about it was I had to follow all the blogs again in my new user. I have figured out how to do alot more admin items in blogger now and I know the biggest question a number of bloggers have using blogspot is how to Unfollow blogs in the new format.

So here is how you do it:

1. Find the gear wheel on the top of your reading list on the right hand side and hover over it. You will see it will pop up a little note that says "Manage reading list" and then click on the gear wheel.

2. This will bring you to a window where it will list all your blogs you are currently following. For those you want to unfollow just simply select "Settings" (it may ask you to put in your password again and then you will have to select it again)

3. Then find the "Stop following this blog" in blue text and select it.

4. This will open a pop up window asking if you are sure you want to stop following it.

I had to learn how to do this since I had to re-follow the blogs I wanted to and delete all of the ones I was following in my old user id. Hope I was able to help some of you clean up blogs that are no longer posting or you simply just want to get rid of!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Starting a New Streak

After having 3 lackluster weeks of working out I am determined to get back on track!! I've been struggling with my motivation since I've had no races on my calendar and I was feeling burned out. Thankfully I have found both my motivation and determination!!

The plan is to try and make it easy on myself by not having specific items on my calendar. So here is my seriously, well thought out plan.....
  • 3 days of at least 2 different kinds of cardio each day(running, biking or swimming)
  • 3 days of strength (consisting of 1 of my Jillian Michaels DVD's)
  • 1 rest day
I know, it took me a while to come up with that plan! I did put some thought into it since I have the goal of completing an Olympic Distance triathlon in 2013 and this was similar to what my plan looked like last year. So I'm just not throwing anything down on a specific day and going to do what I feel like. I think this will help me from feeling burned out sinceI have a choice in what I get to do each day and what will work with my schedule. I have 3 different Jillian DVD's so I can switch it up on my strength days too. I love that fact that I don't even have this written down anywhere, well until now, it's just all in my head.

On a good note, I tested out my foot last night but doing a little treadmill run but not overly pushing it. I did a warmup walk of a 1/4 mile and then another in between 1/2 mile running segments at 6 on the treadmill. I could tell my endurance was down but I did feel like I would start to find the groove right about the time I would have to stop to walk. So far I've had no pain in the foot after running for small periods of time on Saturday and Monday! I'm excited to know that the swelling in my peroneal tendon is gone and I can gradually build up a base again.

Do you prefer a detailed training plan or a very flexible plan?
I'm usually better with very detailed plans but so far I'm liking this and I've gotten in workouts the last 3 days and will be doing a Jillian DVD after dinner settles in tonight.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Epic Spectating & Finding my Mojo

Saturday I packed up and headed to pickup Sarah and we then ventured south for the Tyranena Beer Run. I unfortunately would not be running due to my lovely inflammed tendon but I was excited to meet more awesome runners and fellow bloggers and for some epic spectating. We met up with most of the "Panty Raiders" and I was happy they made it easy on me for spectating as I only really had to remember 1 outfit!! These ladies are awesome and were a pleasure to hang out with after the race enjoying Tyranena Beers and some delish lasagna. After the race most of us headed over to Rachel's who graciously hosted us ladies and drank & ate some more!
Lisa, Amy Zem, Falon, Kimba, Rachel, Kim, Linda, Amy Zyn, Amy G

I would highly recommend this race!! They have a 1/4 barrel (13.1 mile) and 1/6 barrel(4.73 miles I think?) routes and they are completely different so you are not running into each other since the shorter race starts an hour after the half.

I made sure on Friday night to come up with a sign and my requirement was to somehow work "beer" into the sign since it was a beer run, I was planning on doing "Pain Now...Beer Later" but my sign making skills need some help and I didn't leave myself enough room after "pain". I screwed up on the first freakin word, but I think this actually ended up being better.
What do you think of my sign?

My husband told me it was lame and doesn't get the whole "race sign" thing. But he is not a runner so I don't think he ever will get it! I made several runners smile, laugh, tell me they love me and "you got that right" so I consider this sign a success and in need of being saved for later use. I had a spectator take a picture of me with my sign at 6 miles and I was right before the last turn of the finish and a few runners seeked me out to take a picture of me with the sign afterwards as well. I was even recognized walking around in the tent afterwards without the sign so I think I helped people through the race at some point!

I just love that feeling and seeing people achieve their goals and have success just gave me the motivation I was needing. I have had a very difficult time getting myself to workout since the marathon I was feeling a little burned out on running and then having to take care of my left foot. I'm also not signed up for any races until this is fixed. Needless to stay I've been getting in workouts few and far between and I have a renewed sense of energy now!

I kicked butt in my Jillian Michaels DVD this afternoon and I'm feeling great. A week ago I was basically dying 10 minutes into the workout so I'm feeling encouraged by my progress in strength and wanting to push forward in all areas now.

I am going to test out the foot since I did some running yesterday during my spectating getting from point to point and I am feeling no pain at all. I am going to do a treadmill run tomorrow using a run/walk ratio and will kill it at any point I feel any twinge in my foot. Here's hoping to some sucecss!!

Would you rather run or spectate?

How do you re-focus?