Tag Archives: workout

miles of dedication. nine left…is one for you?

Well, it’s upon me. I never thought it would come this quickly, but I’m glad it’s here. In fact, I’m excited…in a way I don’t think I’ve ever experienced before. It’s a feeling I can’t describe, but it’s great.

Ok, so what’s upon me you’re wondering (since clearly the marathon isn’t upon me just quite yet). October is upon me! The month of October is here…which means the marathon is closer than ever. While it is a somewhat intimidating thing that I only have 16 days left until the big race, it is also extremely exciting.

In just 16 days, I will run through the streets of Detroit…I will run across an international border (twice)…I will do something I have wanted to do for a long time and I will do it in a city I love…I will feel anxiety before the sun rises…I will likely feel my anxiety disappear as I enter the first mile (the mile being run for my mom)…I will do my best to pace myself…I will remember my training and get myself through all 26.2 miles (the last mile being run for my dad and the last two-tenths of a mile being run for me)…I will cross the finish line…I will finish a marathon! (I just got chill writing those last two “I will…” phrases :-D)

Man…I can’t wait…

I can’t wait to run those miles…to finish those miles…for each of you who have been reading my blog; who have been supporting me; who have told me I have inspired you (still, the number of responses of this nature that I have received boggle my mind and put a smile on my face); who inspire me (thanks, Christina); who have rollerbladed and/or biked alongside me (thanks Kay-Kay, Amanda, & Adam); who have run with me (thanks, Chris, Jeremy, Kelly B., Amy, Ang, & Kelly T….and anyone else I may have missed); and who have encouraged and motivated me.

I…can’t…wait…

But, I have to and I will…my patience is in full force. There are still 16 days of training, tapering, rest, carbs, and electrolytes before the big day. These days are big ones and they remind me that I can wait…because I need these days and I need to take full advantage of my workouts and cross-training and rest during these days.

I can wait…

I can wait, while being anxious and excited, and ready to do this!

It’s going to be good, my friends. SO good.

Those miles…

And, during each and everyone of those miles I’ll be thinking of you…I’ll be running for you. My miles are dedicated to you. And, there are still 9 miles left to dedicate…is one of them for you? I would love to dedicate one of those 9 miles to you…leave a comment on this post, and pick a mile number that’s still left (the miles are listed over on the right sidebar of this blog).

So here we are…October is here. Race day is almost here.
9 months of training…success.
9 miles left to dedicate…let’s do this.

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26 days til 26.2

Today is a magical day. There are only 26 days left until I lace up my running shoes early in the morning downtown and head for the start line. In 26 days, at 7AM the clock will start. Thousands of runners will take off to accomplish what they have been training for over the past weeks and months. I will be one of those runners, and I can’t hide my excitement.

I’ve been wanting to accomplish this for quite some time now. My goal: run, enjoy the route, and finish. Sounds like it should be simple enough, right? Well, I sure hope so. If you ask me, there is nothing “simple” about running 26.2 miles. The physical, mental, and emotional strengths that I have surprised myself with this year are things that I am not about to brush off with a “no big deal.” The truth is…this is a big deal.

At the beginning of 2010, I told myself this would be the year. I would run and finish a marathon. I knew that to get to that point though, I would need to commit — no excuses allowed. The commitment goes beyond committing to run the miles — I have taken the time needed to run the miles the right way, have worked hard to finish each of my runs as strong as possible, I have changed my eating and drinking habits (water is God and pre-run, mid-run, and post-run food should be chosen wisely), and I have even changed my social habits  (saying “no” to much more than usual, coming home earlier than usual so I can sleep and wake up early the next day for a long run, and reassuring my friends that I won’t be “lame” after Oct. 17). Holy commitment!

So far, I have done it. I have kept running, kept writing about my running, and have somehow managed to “stay committed even when I’m not motivated” (for those of you who have been following my journey for awhile now, you might remember that notion from awhile back…sound advice one of my best friends, Kelly, shared with me).

I remember when Summer came around the corner and I had already been running, but I needed to start following a bit more strict training plan. I started. I kept up with it, but allowed enough flexibility to be sure I maintained motivation. As long as I fit workouts in, stayed in shape, and was able to finish my long runs, I knew I was on the right track. Sure, there have been a handful of times when I was ready to stop (I hate even daring to use that awful word, “quit”), be done with it — who really needs to run a marathon anyway? What was I proving? Who was I doing this for? But, I carried on. I need to run a marathon. I am proving to myself that I can finish this, that I can really do something major that I have wanted to do for years — I can take something huge from start to finish. I am doing this for me.

As horrible as a few of my long runs have been, I am thankful for them. They are reminders for me during a long run that if I was able to finish a long run “like that one [insert a number from 7-14 here]-miler in [insert summer month here] in the middle of the afternoon in ninety-some-percent humidity” or “like that one at 6AM in 92% humidity” (yes, 92% humidity at 6AM!), then I can finish that same distance, and longer, during the beautiful Fall months. Oh, and don’t forget the great runs…where I have finished and felt like I could just continue on and finish a marathon right then and there. Those runs keep me going, too…maybe even more so!

It’s not just the runs…but my friends and family, too (yes, that means you…thanks for continuing to read my ramblings). They, and you, have kept encouraging me — some have even joined me on their bike or rollerblades — and have continued to remind me how insane I am.

I guess I am a little insane. But, aren’t we all? I’ll just have a medal to prove it 🙂

Until then, there are still more training miles to be ran. They won’t run themselves, and I haven’t crossed that finish line yet…so this isn’t over yet. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel (or the clock at the finish line, if you will) but there’s no stopping until I cross that line.

This weekend…I have my longest run of training ahead of me. A 20-mile run. 20 miles! I’m looking forward to it because I know I will be that much closer to the start line, and to the finish line, and I’ll be that much closer to accomplishing my biggest goal of 2010.

And, when I cross that finish line in 26 days…how sweet it will be. When I can finish my blog post with “26.2 miles…success,” how sweet it will be.

254 days of training down, 26 to go…success.

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up north

I love Up North. Those of you from the Mitten state, or who have ever visited the great Up North in the Mitten, I hope understand and share this same sentiment. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Up North, let me just tell you that out ought to become familiar because it is one of the most beautiful, relaxing, amazing places.

Why do I bring this up in my blog about my journey to completing all 26.2 miles of a marathon?

Well, I bring it up because I was Up North this past weekend…and I had to fit a long run in during the weekend. Who really wants to cut into a weekend of fun, relaxation, and general Up North awesomeness with a long run? Nobody, really. But alas, it had to be done!

So…I grabbed my shoes, Nathan, the good ol’ water belt, and my iPod shuffle and off I went to get my long run in for the weekend. The nice thing was I was in a place where I don’t often run so the route wasn’t boring. The not so nice thing was the number of rolling hills I encountered. I made it through though, and somehow I am still alive to tell about it.

I’d like to share a few photos I took during my beautiful Up North run! Enjoy 🙂

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double digits

Well, I have been away…as I am sure some of you have noticed. However, I promise my temporary hiatus has not been due to the fact that I have not been running. Nor is it due to the fact that I have not had computer/internet access. It is simply because I have been overwhelmed and beyond busy, and in the midst of it all I have been struggling to find a way to relax, de-stress, and keep myself sane. In doing this, I have allowed myself to push less pressing things to the back burner and allow time for things that allow me to “turn if off” for awhile. Unfortunately I have been busy to the point where I have not had much time to “turn it off,” but at least I have been able to set some enjoyable things (i.e., writing in this blog) aside and not let allow them to become additional stressors.

It is difficult enough for me to make time to run, and making time to blog about it is even more difficult (although I do love this blog). I have to be wise, and pick and choose what I truly need to make happen each day. For training, it is much more important to get runs in than it is to maintain this blog — sure, I want to chronicle my adventures but those 26.2 miles certainly will not run themselves nor will I dominate them by way of making blog posts more important that training runs.

Anyway, enough about that. I will continue to update this as often as I can as my mileage increases and I continue to struggle to fit runs in whenever and wherever.

Tuesdays and Thursdays have been late night runs over the past few weeks. Amy and I run like the wind, solve world issues, and define the meaning of life on Tuesday and Thursday nights. It’s true…we’re superhuman.

The weekends have been for long runs, and the runs keep getting longer…which brings me to…drum roll, please…the title of this post. DOUBLE DIGITS! This weekend, I hit my first double digit training run. 10 miles. Middle of the afternoon. 10 long miles.

This is the farthest I have gone during my training, and let me tell you…there were certainly a few times where I just wanted to stop, but I didn’t. This past weekend’s 10-mile run was the most motivating, inspiring, challenging, discouraging run I have had thus far during my training process.

That being said, it was more motivating than anything else — now that I know that I can go 10 miles and train hard enough to make it this far, I know I can push myself to go all the way. Like I always say, those 26.2 miles won’t run themselves!

So…the training continues…and the long runs will remain in the double digits, and continue inching up in distance. This week it’s about staying strong and motivated, with some midweek quick and fast training, and I am feeling confident that this week is gong to be a good training week. I’m ready and looking forward to the  nature trail that awaits me for an early morning 12-miler this weekend.

What’s in store for your training this week? How are your runs going? Have you registered for your big race yet?

There’s still time…keep up the training and we’ll keep each other going.

First double-digit mileage run…success!

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about those running clothes in my car…

If you remember Sunday’s post, I mentioned that I will keep running clothes in my car at all times from now on.

This thought came about during Sunday’s run, as I once again struggled to fit my run in amidst the million and other one things I had to do that day.

My solution? Keep running clothes with me at all times. If I have to run to someone’s house, go to the store, have an appointment, whatever it may be — I can still find time to fit my run in wherever I am. If it is the end of the day and I haven’t made it home, but I want to get a run in outside before it gets dark out then I can stop. I’ll go for a run wherever I am and then I can drive home. Drive in the dark? Sure, I can do that. Run in the dark? Not so much unless I’ve got at least one running buddy with me.

That’s my solution to often long days at the office. We’ll see how it works…

On another note, I love that runs have been total stress relievers for me lately. It feels so great to have something that can really relax me and help clear my mind.

I’m curious…how do you manage fitting runs in on long days? Do you settle for the treadmill? The gym? Do you run first thing in the morning instead? Share your solutions!

Happy running 🙂

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i haven’t forgotten…

I haven’t forgotten about running, or working out, or anything like that.

I’ve been doing my best to get little workouts in here and there. These past few weeks have been extremely hectic and even thought I have gotten some runs and workouts in, they have not been what I would call my best workouts. Nevertheless, I am staying in shape and getting it done.

This weekend’s workouts got lost. In the midst of moving, I just couldn’t seem to bring myself to make time to workout…but hey, if you ask me moving is a workout in and of itself so that kind of counts.

Anyway, it’s about go time for the serious training.

I know I was supposed to have the half marathon coming up…but since I thought it was june 26, and i have since come to find out that it is actually june 6…the half marathon is actually not coming up. Due to my wrong thinking, I made plans for the weekend of the half marathon I was planning to run and to be quite honest, I’d rather keep my plans than change them and run the half marathon. After all, there will be other half marathons in the coming months that I will be able to run…and let’s be honest, the ultimate goal is 26.2 so as long as that is reached, I am ok with it.

Other than that, I am extremely excited to go grocery shopping this week. With an empty refrigerator and empty pantry, I need to stock up and I am looking very forward to getting lots of good energy foods and feel-good foods!

Also, things are starting to calm down a bit (if that truly ever actually happens) so yay for getting it together and not being in such a whirlwind of things. I think this will certainly help with my upcoming runs…and I won’t feel so rushed all the time (kind of like now…where I am kind of rushing because I really want to sleep).

Hope your running is going great too!

Looking forward to hearing about everyone’s warm weather runs as the weather seems to be taking a turn for the better lately!

Happy running.

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making running a priority, seven-mile monday, and sweating like a girl

I was supposed to run 7 miles yesterday. I didn’t. I was exhausted and needed to get rest more than anything. So, I decided the smart thing to do would be get rest, hydrate, and move my 7 miles to today.

Smart move.

I got home from work today, fit a power nap in, then I put my running clothes on. Sure, I would have loved a longer nap but it is necessary to make running a priority. That is one of the biggest things that needs to happen in the coming months: running must be a priority in 2010. This was something that was made clear by one of my dear friends, Elisabeth (much love, dear), yesterday. I had a really good chat with her on my way home from the west side of the state yesterday. We were just catching up and we talked about running, of course. Now, that girl is amazing…and she is a proud marathon finisher. We are quite similar and I know that if she can find it in herself to train for and run 26.2 miles, I can dig deep enough to do the same. She reassured me of this, and it was great motivation.

With that in mind, I made running a priority today. I want to run 26.2 miles six months from now, so I believe I can make running a priority for the next six months. I really wanted to go meet up with my friends for Monday night shenanigans, but I opted out because I needed to get 7 miles in. I tried to get my brother to come along and ride his bike while I ran but he wasn’t having it today. Instead, I took my iPod with me. This is the first time in quite awhile that my iPod has been along for a run. I had a great shuffle of songs – everything from Elton John, Kid Rock, The Lost Prophets, Third Eye Blind, Trisha Yearwood to Jay-Z, Fergie, 3OH!3, Gwen Stefani, etc. It was quite a mix, and it got me through a strong 7 miles.

After a long day of still being pretty tired, I needed a good solid run. It was a perfect way to destress on a Monday evening, and honestly who really likes Mondays? I know I’m not the biggest fan of Mondays, and completing a great run was a great way to turn today into a good day. I had 7 whole miles to clear my head, breathe, relax, and enjoy being with me on the road running with nothing to worry about…not a care in the world other than running, going strong, and sweating like a girl.

Yes, I said it…sweating like a girl.

I wore long sleeves and shorts today. It was a nice out, a little breezy – I probably would have been fine with a tank top but something compelled me to go with a long-sleeve top today. (Warning: if you are so sure that girls don’t sweat and that they only glisten, and if girls who sweat gross you out for whatever reason, stop reading now.)

As I was somewhere around the beginning of mile six or so, I had to adjust my headband. Now that I have shorter hair I have to wear a headband and bobby pins in my hair to keep everything pulled back and up. Wow, my headband was sweaty. I could feel the sweat dripping down my face. Now, the fact that I was sweating was no news to me. I am 110% positive this started much earlier than mile six. I’ll be the first to tell you that when I work out, I work hard and I am not afraid to sweat. However, it was today, at this moment near the beginning of mile six that I realized the joy in working out, going hard, and giving it your all…and in sweating. Yeah, I said it…relax.

There is nothing pretty about running long distances – sweat pours out of your body, you breathe hard, you spit on the side of the road if you have to, you pour water on your head during long runs on hot days, you get blisters on your toes, and you certainly don’t look or smell like roses when you finish your run. But, for me that is part of why I love running. The fact that there isn’t much pretty about it makes it that much better.

Yes, I like to get ready and do my hair, wear cute shoes, put make-up on, and accessorize, but just as easily as I can put effort into looking nice, I can put effort into sweating and finishing a good workout. Yeah, I sweat like a girl when I workout…and let me tell you, girls sweat. All those girls who “glisten,” and have seemingly non-existent sweat glands, I have no doubt that there are plenty of girls who are jealous. But, I have to tell you…for me, there is a satisfaction in the fact that I don’t merely glisten. After a hard workout, I feel like I worked hard, I look like I worked hard, I stink like I worked hard, and you know what…I did work hard.

That’s what sweating like a girl is about. And, why not sweat like a girl? I mean, after all…saying “I sweat like a girl” sounds much more powerful and hardcore (maybe even a little prettier;) ) than “I sweat like a man,” which sounds kinda gross and improper 🙂

So, girls…I challenge you to go out there and sweat (and guys…well, you should go out there and sweat too).

Seven-mile Monday and all that goes with it…success.

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