Friday, October 29, 2010

You have to start somewhere...

  So this has been a year of my feeling like such a failure.  I've gained weight...lost strength and endurance...and basically struggled to believe that I can change again.  BUT I haven't given up...and today I continued on my quest to get on track and stay there by trying out Bob Harper's new Inside Out "Strength" DVD.  Now to be honest....I did the 20 minute beginners version (following it up with a 3 mile run), but something he said in the beginning of the DVD truly brought me the encouragement I needed to "Stop talking about it and just DO IT".  He said "Everyone's got to start somewhere"!  I's so simple...but for me it's so true!  I've been beating myself up so much for not being as in shape and athletic as I use to be....angry that I am not being who I know I can be...and yet instead of using that as encouragement to get back there, I've used it as my excuse to drop off the healthy band wagon.  Realizing that I have to start somewhere even if it's not where I left off is such an encouragement!  Thank you Bob Harper (For the insight and the good work out)!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Sometimes you have it and sometimes you just don't...

  Tonite was totally one of those nights were the teacher became the student when it came to my weekly run with my sister (pictured to the left with me at our race this past Sunday).  Usually I am the one excited to get on the road, I have all this energy and can run forever and spend our time running trying to encourage my sister while she is wondering how much longer and just trying to get through it.  Well as I already suggested tonite was the complete opposite.  I was so not into running to night.  I was exhausted from work and the entire run I just kept thinking how it would be so much easier to just throw in the towel and go home.  Yet in the midst of my lousy attitude here was my sister totally into this run, pushing me along and not letting me quit!  I've trained her so well....I'm so proud!  And even though it wasn't easy and I didn't want to do it...tonite I still ran our three mile run and did it pretty close to our normal pace (tonite it took 37:10).

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Apple Harvest Fest 5k 2010...

  Today my sister and I ran in the Apple Harvest Fest 5k together!  I have to be honest...this was probably the first time ever I was super relaxed on race day!  I woke up ready to go and feeling like what ever came it would be a great day!  We got to the race super early (which was great because we had to run home back home to pick up my sister's ID which she forgot and I was sure she would need in order to get her bib...although it turns out she didn't) and had plenty of time to take pictures and line up.
  Our main goal for this run was to beat our previous 5k time of 39:13, although my sister was hoping to beat the 37min mark (my prediction was that we would be somewhere in the 37 minute range but not before it).  There were probably about 100-150 people in this race and thus there were no timing chips...just a gun to start you off and a clock to let you know when you finished.  We started at the back of the pack (knowing that since we were running a 4/2 interval race we would end up there anyway.  However neither of us expected that at the half mile mark we would officially be dead last (It was a the strangest thing...we were running great, but I turned around and nobody else was there)!  At that moment I could tell my sister wanted to throw in the towel and quit...but I just kept trying to encourage her that we had to run our own wasn't about anyone else but us...and that as long as we beat our previous best time we should be proud (all things that were pretty easy to say considering I knew eventually we would end up passing people)!
  Slowly but surely we passed one person, then two, then a few more.  We kept catching up to this one lady who was running alone and it was totally encouraging for a sign that we were still in this  (I think in a sense we must have kept pushing her too because every time we got close to passing her out she'd kick it up a notch)!  By the time we finished we were no longer in last place and had beaten our previous time by a whole minute 35 seconds (our unofficial time was I predicted)!
  I was proud of my sister for not giving up on herself...for pushing through her fear and her doubt and doing better than her best!  I also was pretty excited with myself in that I felt great this entire race! I was relaxed during the whole race and felt like I could have kept going and I felt like I had coached my sister when it would have been very easy to get discouraged!  Overall I was pretty happy with the day and super happy we did it!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Rest Day... one of the many joys in life....

  Today is my rest day...yeay!  The only thing that actually make this rest day better than most is that today I actually have the day off as well...double yeay!  So I slept in (for the first time in weeks), took my time getting ready, cleaned my room and then worked on starting a new motivational wall in my room
  I don't know about you but for me there is something very positive about reading motivational quotes or's like it gives me that extra kick I need to workout or do whatever is on the agenda for the day.  So every few months I Will either update or start a new motivational wall in my room for just that purpose.  Here's a pic (To the left) of what I started today.  Some of my favorite quotes.. since they are kinda hard to read from the picture are:

*It's you Vs. You
*IMPACT...Make one
*Nothing hurts more than sitting on the couch
*Happiness is pushing your limits and watching them back down
*To first steps, half steps, or any other step you ever thought possible.  To Losing yourself in order to find yourself at the exact same time

  I also had a chance to update my racing wall (See picture to right)...and while doing so it dawned on me that on sunday when I run this years apple harvest fest 5k it will officially be two years since I ran my first race (In fact the apple harvest fest 5k was the first race I ever did..although this year the course is different).  That first year I ran just two races....and the next year I ran three....and this year I have run 5 so far (by the end of the year that should be 8)!  I think I might be addicted =)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The silly games we play...

Over the years since I’ve take up running, I’ve become the type of runner that loves to run with my headphones on and music blasting in my ears. In fact there has been times where I have claimed that there are magic powers in my MP3 player that make me run at faster speeds. In reality I think music is key for me just in the sense that it keeps me entertained and focused on something other than how long I’ve been running.

The last few days however my MP3 has failed me…..or maybe rather I have failed it. Last night for instance I left it in my car and ended up running on the treadmill so I didn’t bother to go out and get it. Then tonight I actually remembered my music but forgot I was low on battery and within three blocks my player died.

So what’s a girl to do when her only form of entertainment is gone?!?! I’ve heard lots of different answers to that question from many different types of runners. Some people memorize poems or chapters from the bible that they repeat over and over again. Other people will spend their time praying or mentally writing letters to their friends (two things that I also do but usually with my music on as background noise). I on the other hand tend to do probably the most boringest thing ever……..I count. Yep that’s right….I count! In fact I usually count every step I take up to 550 steps and then I count every group of 550 I’ve counted throughout my entire run. Seems silly I know…especially for a girl who despises math…but it works!

Who knows maybe one day I’ll solve one of the worlds hardest math problems while running a marathon….or maybe, just maybe….become someone who can run without music (everyone’s got to have goals right?!…hee hee)!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Dreadmill the Treadmill....

  I've said it before and I'll say it again... I hate the dreadmill!  So in order to entertain myself when I find myself having to use it, I will change up my speed a constantly...and tonite was no exception.  I started off at a very low speed of 3.4 (Yes that's slow...but I tried not to be overly numbers concious tonite) and then at the first turn on the treadmill track grid I bumped my speed to 4.4....then it was back down to 3.5 at the next turn...and up to 4.5 at the next...all the way up to speeds of 4.0 (low) and 5.0 (high) for 36 minutes and 2.27 miles.
  Normally I would look at those numbers and cringe...tonite though I'm happy because I accomplished my three main goals for the night.  Number one I wanted to make sure I didn't stop running.  Number two I wanted to burn over 500 calories.  And Number three I wanted to spend time stretching after my run!  So tonite I can be proud I accomplished everything I set out to do

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The 17th Annual Hartford Marathon...done in a new way

  Yesterday I had the opportunity to participate in the Hartford Marathon by being a member of a relay team of four members who collectively ran all 26.2 miles in 4hrs and 25 minutes (check out my shirt and bib to the left)!  Watching the Marathon always inspires me...seeing people pushed to their limits and then go beyond them is amazing!  This year however I found myself completely inspired mostly by my own teammates.  There was our leg one runner who put down his bike to join a team of girls he's never met to try something new with running!  Talk about stepping out of your comfort zone and thriving! Then there was our Leg three runner who pushed through so many obstacles to not only train for but also find her way to the race in the midst of a schedule that called for going to class and working as well as caring for her family!  To me she is the ultimate example of being able to do anything you put your mind to!  And then there was our third team member who ran the last two legs of the race for a whopping 12 miles all with a smile on her face!  I have so much to learn from her about endurance and attitude!  With people like this in my life...I can't help but feel blessed!

  So Thank you to all my wonderful teammates (each of who impressed and inspired me in ways this note can't even begin to say) and congrats to all this years participants and winners!  AMAZING job everyone!!

PS...We used this race to raise money to help pay for cleft lip/palate surgeries on special needs orphans in China through the organization "Show Hope".  Please consider sending us your support for our great accomplishment by donating to this's not too me for details!