Something awesome happened

I’ve been radio silent for a while, mostly because I’m not allowing myself time to just sit and blog. I’m always on my phone and I HATE trying to type a lot with that tiny keyboard.

So I’ve been doing these six-week challenges where I’m working on one specific training plan. I tend to jump around between training plans a lot when I feel like I’m not getting anywhere. FYI, it’s not a good idea. You wind up having no idea how you’re actually progressing because you keep starting back at square one. Follow-through is good. Follow-through is your friend. This is good life advice, actually. Take it. Use it. Cross-stitch it and frame it.

I started out in the first challenge just trying to stick to one plan. I succeeded, although the incremental distance increases were hard to keep up with – I have mostly been an interval runner, but I want to run a whole 5K without walking. So in weeks 4 & 5 when it’s calling for twenty five minutes of straight running? I ran that long ONCE during the challenge and then, in the following weeks, struggled just to run for ten minutes straight. I was like, HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO DO THIS MORE THAN ONCE.

So in my second challenge, I decided to try to finish the training plan. I deviated for a few weeks to train for a 5K I was running with my aunt (we were planning to run/walk 1 minutes intervals). Then I caught a summer cold, which is the dumbest thing that ever existed. It hit me hard so I didn’t run for, like, a whole week. One day last week I threw my sneakers on and downloaded the next Zombies, Run mission… and I went out and ran for thirty-five minutes straight. I felt incredible. I probably could have run for an hour. I went out slow, probably running like 17-18 minute miles, but for real. I ran two miles and change without stopping. I could cry just typing that, it makes me so happy and proud of myself.

My feet felt great. They didn’t fall asleep. I attribute this to better water intake and shoes with more support. My legs hurt a bit afterwards and the next day, but it wasn’t bad. I only stopped running because I had run a full loop back to my car.

I went out for a run a few days later and ran for 23 minutes.

and again last night, I ran for 34 minutes.

I have a 5K on Monday, and I may actually be able to run the whole thing. I don’t even care what my time is. I’d just like to run the whole thing.

Hard Cider Run

The Hard Cider 5K was on Saturday, May 9… it was RIDICULOUS! Not super hot at first, but definitely muggy, and when the sun came out it was a bit overbearing.  It was really overcast when we got there, so of course I went without the sunscreen. I got a little sunkissed (read: sunburned).

The race was a great idea. Run through the orchard and fields of a vineyard and then hang out and drink hard cider afterwards. Oy vey, the paths through the fields were steep! Up and down, up and down, but way too steep to run up or down! The paths through the trees were dug out with big gouges by tractor tires and there were tree branches all over, so mini-obstacle course! Seriously, everyone was walking, trudging along together like ants marching in the heat.

There was also a herd of deer that was spooked by all the runners and didn’t know where to go, so they ran right through the race. Seeing a deer hurtling toward you at like forty miles an hour is really scary. (they run that fast, right?) Seriously, it almost hit me, I looked up at the right time and stopped running and it passed like three feet in front of me. I could have died, which is pretty scary.  I should probably thank my guardian angel that I stopped running when I did. I think they maybe should have checked the course out before starting the runners. Heart racing? Check!

The lines for everything were super long – registration, bathrooms, the free cider afterwards. There were like 900 people, so I guess that’s fair.

I managed a time of 1:00:52, which wasn’t half bad considering how much I slogged and how little I ran. My friend Carrie ran with me, and I felt bad because she was clearly faster but she kept hanging around or coming back for me. I think that was really nice, but at the same time, I want people running races with me to challenge themselves and try to do a good job. It was her first 5K and wouldn’t it have been nice to get a really awesome PR? She did keep saying that it didn’t matter how long it took for her, it was all going to be a PR!

The BEST part of the whole thing was at the end when you cross the finish line, there are people there handing out medals. I got a medal!!! I wore it all day. I wore it to Mother’s Day dinner with my grandmother. Seriously, they’re so inexpensive, why don’t more 5Ks hand out medals?

I went for a run with my sister on Sunday- it was super hot but we did a lot of walking and talking, “wogging” is what my family calls it. I think she’ll be ready to do the 5K in October! She said her only goal is to keep up with me, and I think she’ll be just fine! (She has since picked out a color run to do in June… yay! our first 5K!)

The Princeton Running Company

Hi All!
I’ve been in hiding for a while. My regular running sort of slowed a bit after the Zoo Stampede so I could work my way through my calf & foot problems. I’ve been doing some stretching and some hydrating and I’ve mainly been running to prepare for the 5Ks, so that means switching from the regular training program to 1 minute intervals. I went to the Princeton Running Company and got myself two new pairs of shoes (which are AWESOME) and had some cool conversation with the people there. It was really cool to talk to running peoples and have them laugh at my running stories and get good advice – highly recommend this place. Really awesome vibe.

I walked in and asked to check out the sneakers. They let me try on some different sneakers and run in them. They filmed me running on the treadmill in a pair of Brooks Ghosts, and I liked them so much I bought them. When they checked out the video of me running, they noticed that my left foot pronates slightly, which might account for the falling-asleep problems I have with it. The other pair I loved were the Brooks Kaleidoscopes, which are technically a men’s shoe but are a bit wider and fit better. I put my foot in that measuring thingy and it said I was like a, eight, eight and a half. My feet are definitely nines. I wound up getting the Ghosts in size 10.5 and the Kaleidoscopes were a men’s 8.5? 9? Whatever, they fit better than the smaller sizes. More comfortable. Prices on the shoes were pretty comparable to what I spent on my last pair, although the Kaleidoscopes were newer and were a bit more expensive.

I’ve done some research: the Ghosts are neutral, and the Kaleidoscopes are stability. I have a pretty normal foot, but I lace my shoes for a high instep – it’s been very comfortable for my wider feet. I’m excited to see which of these shoes works out better for me in the long run. Rimshot, please. So far, I’ve run in both pairs and I am definitely leaning toward the Kaleidscopes as my favorites.

They had a great selection of running accessories, and I finally found some GU! They didn’t have the orange Chomps I have tried before, so I picked up the Black Cherry Chomps. Not my favorite flavor, but it does do the trick. I also got some strawberry lemonade Nuun to try, but I am not in love with it. It might taste better in really cold water.

They also do group runs, which I would love to be able to go to, but I’m still a bit shy about not being able to keep up. I would like to find a group for slower runners. Maybe I should start one… we can call ourselves The Tortoises.