Tuesday, December 26, 2017

2017 Running Review

80 runs
443 kms
9 5 km races
5 10-15 km races
2 half marathons
2 injuries

2017 was a busy running year for me.  I had the most runs and my highest yearly mileage to date. I also participated in more races then any other year.

In 2017 I also learned the benefit of cross training, thanks in part to being injured.  I started the year off with a frozen shoulder, which thankfully didn't really interfere with my running, since I was training for the Fool's Run 1/2 marathon.  I strained my left knee which did interfere with running and started me down the road of cross training. Then after finishing the Valley Harvest 1/2 marathon I suffered from a stress fracture in my right foot that forced me to stop running for more than 6 weeks, but still allowed me to go the gym to keep up my fitness level (and new found arm strength!)

Until this year I had never had a DNS - Did Not Start - for a race I had committed to.  My knee injury, a bad cold and the stress fracture took care of that. 

The best part of running that cannot be counted or measured are the friendships that I have formed.  From running in the rain, joining me on a long run in -18C weather, hanging out at the track while I did 50 laps, dressing up in matching costumes or waiting for me at the finish line, friends make running a wonderful part of my life.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Valley Harvest Half Marathon

This was my first year running at the Valley Harvest Marathon event, and I ran the half-marathon on the Sunday of the Thanksgiving weekend. It is held in the beautiful town of Wolfville, which is just over an hour away from Halifax.  Since my Mom was going to be here for her annual visit, I decided that we would travel up on Saturday and stay over night.  It was worth it to not have to drive so far the morning before the race.  Though I did have to pack our toaster so that I could have my regular pre-run breakfast of toast and peanut butter.

It was great to have Mom there with me; to see me off at the start line and to be the first one to hug me after I finished the line.

The course was beautiful, winding through the country side.  The weather was warmer than I would have liked, and the hills longer and steeper than I was ready for.  I also felt less trained than I had wanted to be.  I did well and was going strong for the first 11 km.  Around km 12 I hit one of the bigger hills and a head wind that started to take it's toll.  I kept going with my planned intervals until around km 17.  I was slower than my planned pace, but I tried to stick with my regular running plan: 1) don't die, 2) finish, 3) have fun.

Runners are some of the most supportive people I have ever met.  As I struggled with a hill towards the end of the race, walking slower and slower as I trudged along, a runner doing the full marathon came up behind me.  He slowed down, put a hand on my shoulder and started talking to me.  He told me what to expect from the rest of the route, gave me some strategies to help me finish and stayed with me till we crested the hill. Without him (I learned later that his name was Sean) I would have probably just given up on that hill; sat down and cried till a sweeper car came to pick me up.  Instead I finished the race.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

MEC Race 4

After the last MEC race, I have to admit that I was a little worried about how I would fare today.  But the weather was perfect and the trail was flat.  Today's race was a 15 km out and back along a beautiful trail in Musquodoboit Harbour.

As always with life, my training has fallen off a bit and I haven't done a long run in 3 weeks. Today is the last long run before the Valley Harvest Half Marathon, and the schedule called for 20 km. At one point this week we had entertained the idea of finishing the 15 km and heading back out to do another 5 to get in the full training run.  Once the reality of today set in however, there was no way that was going to happen.  At the 13 km mark I was ready to call it quits and sit on one of the nice benches that were along the route and have a good cry. I wasn't hurt, or even sore from running, I was simply convinced that I couldn't do it.   I worked hard to get out of my head and to keep just putting one foot in front of the other. The next 1.5 km were some of the hardest I have ever run.

The last .5 km was one of the best times I've had running, even though I couldn't breath and had to use my asthma inhaler.  2 friends - Jeannette and Teresa - who had already finished their races, walked back out onto the course to meet me.  I'm pretty sure if they hadn't I would have given up and walked the rest of the way.  The only problem was that I got all emotional seeing them and started to tear up, which triggered an asthma attack.  Teresa talked me through some calming, breathing exercises and I got things under control enough to run the rest of the way to the finish line, with friends on either side of me.

I finished the race with a time of 02:38:30, which is right on par for where my pace is these days, so I'm now feeling better about my ability to finish a half marathon in just 14 days!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Weeks 8-13 Training

Well, these updates fell off the radar pretty quickly!  Luckily it doesn't mean that my training did too, though I really haven't followed my training plan as well as I had hoped!  Life really does get in the way.

Week 8 started out well.  I ran the MacPass miles for the first time and pushed my 12k long run out to the Monday. I didn't miss any other training that week till Saturday when we were in a mostly minor car accident.  The car ended up being a write off, but nobody was seriously hurt and I was only stiff and sore for a few days.

Week 9 was car accident recovery and vacation. I did run 3.5 kms on my birthday, but that was it.

Week 10 was the rest of vacation, but I managed to get in 2 runs (6k and 8k) after I got home.

Week 11 only had 2 runs - a 16k long run and a 6k run mid week.  No really good reason for skipping the rest.

Week 12 started to look better with a 17k long run, a 5k run and a night of hill repeats.

Week 13 fell of the rails again.  I skipped my 18km long run and only made it out for one clinic night with a 6k run. Then we travelled to BC for the weekend.  With 20+ hours of travel over 4 days and a 4 hour time zone difference, I didn't even bother packing running gear.

You'll notice during all of these updates that there is no mention of going to the gym. I haven't been to boot camp since August 10th, but fully intend to get back at it this week.

I only have 3 weeks left until the Valley Harvest Half Marathon.  That gives me a total of 13 training runs, so I really can't skip/miss any of them!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

MacPass Mile recap & Week 7 training

Running the MacPass Mile has been on my bucket for a few years now.  Unfortunately due to construction on the McDonald bridge, they haven't held the race for the past 2 years.  It's a free race that fills up quickly - it's capped to 200 participants per run -Women's, Men's, Boys and Girls, so I signed up as soon as I heard that it was opening up again.

The race starts on the Halifax side and cross the 1 mile bridge and finishes on the Dartmouth side.

We had a great time even thought it was pouring rain.

The incline of the bridge wasn't nearly as bad to run up as I had thought it would be.  Maybe my hill training really is paying off!

Overall training for the Valley Harvest Half-Marathon is going well.  I continue to be injury free and feel myself getting stronger (and a wee bit faster) with every run. Unfortunately I missed quite a few runs this week due to family obligations, but I'm not letting it get me down.

  • Mon - Rest day
  • Tues - 4k run
  • Wed - 4x400 Hill training
  • Thurs -rest day instead of 5k run
  • Fri -  Rest day
  • Sat - rest day instead of 4k run
  • Sun -1.6k run instead of 12k run
Total: 11.6k

60 day to go!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Week 6 - Half Marathon Training

As part of the running room half-marathon training this week, we started hill training.  The theory behind running up and down a hill is to build your strength and endurance, as well as to help mentally prepare you for the hills you'll encounter during your race.  Hill training was Wednesday night at 6:00 and it was 28C out.  Way too hot by my standards.  But we did it anyway.  The problem (in my mind) with the hill that the RR uses for training is that it's 1.5 km away - and all UPHILL to get there.  By the time I got to the hill, I was done! I ran up that hill all 3 times though, with only a few walk breaks along the way.  By the end of the program we will be running up the hill 9 times in a row.  I can't wait.........

I also changed my running plan from 4 and 1s to 5 and 1s this week with no major setbacks.  My pace is slightly slower as I work on the longer endurance, but I felt good after the runs, including the 10k on Sunday.  If I can handle 5 and 1s for the next week I'll work on bumping it up again, with the ultimate goal of getting to 10 and 1s before the race.
  • Mon - Boot Camp instead of rest day
  • Tues - 4k run
  • Wed - 3x400 Hill training
  • Thurs - Boot Camp instead of 5k run
  • Fri -  rest day
  • Sat - rest day instead of 4k run
  • Sun -10k run
Total: 19k

67 day to go!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Week 5 Half-Marathon training

This has been my best training week so far.  Not only do I feel myself getting stronger, I'm seeing an improvement in my pace. On Tuesday, I ran with the Running Room Clinic, and Ken, one of the instructors ran with me.  He has suggested that I go back to running 4 and 1s, as that seems to be where I find my best stride right now.  Over the next few weeks I'll work on increasing my running time.  Between the 4 and 1s and Ken's encouragement, I had my second fastest 5k time of the year, and it was a full 3 minutes faster than the last few 5k races that I've done.  I kept using the 4 and 1s for the rest of the week and continued to see gains in my time.

On Sunday my friend Teresa ran with me for my 10k long run. She normally runs at a faster pace than I do, but she stuck with me the whole time, which I really needed!  It started out cool and shady and flat, but around the 5k mark it became hot and sunny and hilly.  Having Teresa there helped me get through it all.  When I felt that I couldn't finish a 4 minute section, she would encourage me to just keep going.  When I couldn't make it up a part of the hill, she came beside me, held my hand and we got up it together.

Image result for running friends

While running can be a solitary sport, for me it is very much improved by the people I run with.
  • Mon - rest day
  • Tues - 5k run
  • Wed - Work dinner out instead of 4k run
  • Thurs - 5k run and Boot Camp instead of 4k run
  • Fri -  rest day
  • Sat - 3k run
  • Sun -10k run
Total: 23k - my most weekly distance so far

76 day to go!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Week 4 - 1/2 Marathon Training

This week was pretty much a right off.  Instead of running/exercising 5-6 times, I only got in 3. I had planned on missing one run on Tuesday as we were celebrating Liam's birthday.  What I hadn't counted on was not sleeping Tuesday night and feeling like crap all day Wednesday, so I skipped that run too.  I made up one of the runs on Thursday by doubling up by running in the morning and going to the gym in the evening. But then I had self-induced intestinal issues Friday and Saturday night that kept me from running Sat/Sun.  One day I will remember/accept that I am lactose intolerant and eat accordingly. Though to be fair, this was the worst reaction I have ever had.  I'm not too worried about losing this week of training as it's still early on and I have time to catch up.

  • Mon - Boot Camp instead of rest day
  • Tues - Birthday Celebration instead of 3k run
  • Wed - Not feeling well instead of 4k run
  • Thurs - 3k run and Boot Camp instead of 4k run
  • Fri -  rest day
  • Sat - Not feeling well instead of  4k run
  • Sun -Not feeling well instead of 9k run
Total: 3k - WAY down from last week

83 days to go.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Week 3 - Half Marathon Training

This is the first week that I made it out to all 3 clinic runs at the Running Room.  The instructors are great and very encouraging.  I had reservations of joining a running group for the half-marathon training as I knew that my pace would be slower then everyone else's.  I may be the slowest, but everyone is so encouraging!  The instructors often double back to run with me after spending time with the faster runners up ahead. I'm picking up tips on stride, form and breathing and as a result my running has improved already, after just 3 weeks.
  • Mon - Boot Camp instead of rest day
  • Tues - 3k run
  • Wed - 4k run
  • Thurs - Boot Camp instead of 4k run
  • Fri -  rest day
  • Sat - rest day instead of 4k
  • Sun - 9k run
Total distance - 18k.

91 days to go

Monday, July 3, 2017

Week 2 - Half Training

It's only week 2 of training and I've already missed a run. But since I am adding a boot camp each week on a rest day, I figure it will all work out in the end.

  • Mon - Boot Camp instead of rest day
  • Tues - 4k run
  • Wed - rest day instead of 3k run
  • Thurs - Boot Camp instead of 4k run
  • Fri -  rest day
  • Sat - 10k race instead of 3k
  • Sun - 5k race instead of 7k run
Total distance - 19km, slightly down from last week.

The added bonus of running so often, is that I get to do some of the virtual races that I've signed up for, like the "Global Running Day 5k" that Jody and I did together yesterday.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Epic Canada 10k

Today I ran a 10k race for Canada's 150th birthday.  And this one went really well....other than the rain.  So. Much. Rain!

I loved that this race was close, just over in Dartmouth, so even though it started at 8:00, I didn't have to get up hideously early in order to get there. I met up with some friends and we had time to hang out before the start.  Luckily it wasn't raining then, just cool and overcast - perfect running weather as far as I'm concerned.

The first 2k started off flat or slightly downhill.  KM 3 was uphill and after that there were some small rolling hills, but nothing to steep. This course was a combination of road and crushed gravel trail though Shubie park.

The rain started off with  light mist, which was actually nice and refreshing.  By KM 5 though it had changed to torrential downpour. I had water dripping off everywhere and I don't think my shoes will dry out till next week.  I had dyed my hair red for the run, and ended the day with a pink hat and dye dripping down the side of my face, which luckily you could only see up close.

I finished with a chip time of 01:49:47 a full 47 seconds faster than I ran at the Bluenose.  The best part was that I felt great!  I ran more than I walked and I didn't have an asthma attack at the finish line!  It was nice to finish a race and not end up in the first aid tent.  This was also the first time I tried Gu, a running fuel, half way through the race.  It not only tasted great - like a thick caramel sauce - I really felt that it perked me up and gave me a boost for the second half of the race.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Week 1 Training - Valley Half

I have officially started training for my next half-marathon, the Valley Harvest Half held Thanksgiving weekend in Wolfville.

This will be my 3rd half marathon, and I decided to take a more structured training approach this time around.  So to help me with that I signed up for a half-marathon training clinic through The Running Room. It is a 15 week program that includes 3 runs a week with the group and 2 runs on your own.  I am trading in most of the runs on my own for cross training at the gym as I know that I need to focus as much on cross training as I do on running if I want to stay injury free.

The first week starts you off nice and easy:

  • Mon - Boot Camp instead of rest day
  • Tues - 3k run
  • Wed - 4k run
  • Thurs - Boot Camp instead of 3k run
  • Fri - Rest day
  • Sat - 3k run
  • Sun - 10k race instead of 7k run

So in total I ran 20k in the first week, the most mileage I've done since April.

Other than the crappy 10k Race on Sunday, I'm feeling great!  My knee isn't bothering me and I'm starting to feel stronger overall from the boot camp exercises.

103 days to go!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

MEC race 3

Hot.  Hilly.  Humid.  Hell.

This was my third 10k race and was almost the race that made me think that running isn't for me.  Now that I'm home, had a shower and continuing to hydrate with ALL the water, I am willing to run again.... just maybe not in the heat.

The best part of this race was FRIENDS.  

I go into every race with 3 goals - 1: Don't die, 2: Finish 3: Have fun.  I did not have fun, I did finish, and once again I felt that I just might die.

The race didn't start till 9:30 and it was already +26°C.  The course was along the beautiful Salt Marsh Trails. However there was no shade and barely any breeze.  But there were HILLS.  All the hills.

I tried my best in the beginning and managed to run/walk the first 5k. At the turn around, I dumped a lot of water on my head in an attempt to cool down.  I drank all the water.  And then I walked.  I walked the last 5ks- Up the hills, Down the hills, In the heat.  So. Much. Heat.

I crossed the finish line with a time of 02:05:34- last again, but I thought to myself "at least I didn't die"

I walked over to my friends who were cheering me on, got some water and BAM! I couldn't breath.  Luckily I was talking to Melissa at that time and she quickly got me to the first aid tent, helped me get my asthma inhaler out of my pouch and told the First Aider's what was going on. I used the puffer, walked slowly around in the shade (with the First Aider following me to make sure I didn't keel over) and eventually my breathing improved.  

I gave Jody the car keys (driving didn't seem like a good idea) and we headed out for brunch.  While my breathing was better, my temperature was still high and I struggled through breakfast, vacillating between nausea and being lightheaded.  Jeanette went to the bathroom with me to make sure I didn't pass out and helped cool me down with we paper towel on my neck.  

This is why friends are the best part of any race.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Michelin Tire Trot 5k

The local town of Bridgewater, NS is home to a Michelin tire plant.  This year, as part of their week long health and safety community events, they hosted their first ever Michelin Tire Trot 5k race.  As an added bonus, the race was free to sign up for AND you got a great looking finisher's medal.

So a group of us signed up, got up early on a Saturday morning and drove over an hour in the rain to run along the beautiful Centennial trail.

(*not my picture... imagine this in a torrential downpour)

Trying to stay dry before the run.

Other than the rain, it was a great run.  And the rain mostly stayed at a light mist until I hit the 4th kilometer, then the skies opened up and I had water dripping off of my everything.  My knee felt good and I ran more than I walked, so I consider that a win.  I finished with  chip time of 55:51.

I was smart enough to pack dry clothes, so I as able to get changed before we headed out for our post-run brunch.  But not before a picture op with the Michelin Man.

Monday, June 12, 2017

The journey so far

I started this blog 7 years ago as a way to journal and track my weight loss journey.  Recently it's evolved into more of a running blog, but that is because running has become such an important part of my health routine.

Much like my blogging, my weight has ebbed and flowed over the years.  By 2013 I had lost 60 pounds.  I was running 2-3 times a week and doing Tae Kwon Do 2-3 days a week.  On the food side I was counting calories and following the 5:2 Fast diet plan.  I feel that the fasting is what really had me losing weight, but I didn't find it sustainable, especially with all the exercise I was doing.

After 2013 my weight slowly crept back up.  I stopped fasting, I stopped going to Tae Kwon Do and I stopped counting calories.  The only consistent thing that I've kept up is running.  But my running has gotten slower and harder the more weight I've put on.

The plan is to get back on track.  I start training for the Valley Harvest Half Marathon next week through the Running Room.  I'm also going to join a gym so that I can go to their boot camps 2-3 times a week.  I'm tracking my food again.  The only thing I'm not going back to is fasting. While it is an effective tool for weight loss, I find it makes me too tired and I would rather focus on eating healthy and exercising.

Like always, I don't have a specific weight goal or running pace that I'm aiming for.  Healthy, injury free and happy are the best goals to have.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

IWK 5k - DNS

This was my first DNS - Did Not Start. 

My knee bothered me a bit during the Penguin Run yesterday and then got progressively worse on the walk back to the car and throughout the rest of the day. By bedtime I could barely put weight on it to hobble across the floor.  I went from thinking I could walk the 5k today, to thinking of down grading to the 1.5k seniors walk, to just going to support friends and take pictures, to.... hmmm I don't think I can go at all.

This was a un-timed, fun run to raise money for our local children's hospital, so I have no issues with having spent the money on the race entry and then not being able to do the run.  I would have loved to have gone and spent time with friends (there was a group of 21 going from Team Myles) but I knew that resting my knee was more important if I don't want to risk serious long term damage.  I need to get it better soon as I start my training for my next half marathon in just 3 weeks.

So today I am taking it easy, icing my knee, using heat, gently stretching it out and enjoying the day on the couch.  But I'm very proud of everyone else who ran today.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Penguin Run 5k

Another great run with great friends today!

This was my first time running the Penguin Run held out in Enfield NS.  My favorite part of the run was Papa Penguin!  He is the designated last place finisher and toddled along behind the rest of us.

Today was the first day of the year that it was HOT out.  Even with just a tank top on, I was too warm.  I was glad for the water station at the half-point turn around, not so that I could drink it, but so that I could dump it on my head.

The course wasn't too hilly, but had still had a few gentle ups and downs.  Unfortunately my knee did not take kindly to the down hills, even though I had it taped,  I ended up walking a fair bit, but was able to finish strong, with a chip time of 55:06.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Bluenose 10k

This was my second year running in the Bluenose.  Last year I did the 5k and within days had signed up to do the 10k this year.  While I've run longer distances as part of my half-marathon training, this was only the second time that I've run a 10k race.  The Bluenose is a huge event in Halifax, spanning 3 days over the Victoria Day long weekend.  It's the only race that I've participated in that has 3000+ runners at the starting line.

I did not train as well as I would have liked for this race.  I did get out on a couple of long runs beforehand, but having just finished the Fool's Run Half-Marathon the month before, I wasn't really feeling like running.  I was much happier to sit on the couch.

My friend Jody was a mentor for Team Myles this year, a group that helps new runners train for and run their first race.  I had joined them on a few of their training runs and hung out with them before the race started.  Even though I wasn't an official member of their group, they supported and encouraged me along the way.

I ran well at the beginning, going 30 minutes before I needed to walk, which for me is almost unheard of.  The course snaked through Point Pleasant Park and had some pretty rough uphill spots that had me walking (and cursing).  I was able to get back to running once we were out of the park, but I was starting to struggle.  I had no time goal, just my 3 standard race goals - 1) don't die, 2) finish, 3) have fun, so I ran when I could and walked when I needed to.

One of the best and unique things that I liked about the Bluenose is their volunteer runners that they have placed at strategic points along the course.  Their sole purpose is to run a few hundred yards with runners that are struggling, talking to them, encouraging them and getting them through a rough spot.  For me that was around the 7.5km mark.  I had come out of the park and hit another steady uphill section.  The next thing I knew, someone was running beside me with their hand on my shoulder, telling me that I could do this.  I looked over and it was someone I knew from the Bedford Running Room.  John stayed with me for a few minutes and gave me the strength to keep going.

Of course the finish line is at the top of a hill.  Why do they do that?  With the encouragement of the crowd and other participants around me, I gave it everything I had left and crossed the finish line.  One of the Team Myles coaches was there and gave me a big hug and congratulations.  I think that is when my emotions got the better of me and I started to tear up.  I was already out of breath from my final sprint, so adding crying to the mix was not a good thing. I tried to walk it off, but quickly realized that I couldn't actually breath and flagged down a volunteer.  The first aid folks whisked me away in a wheelchair pretty quickly.  My breathing sounded like that of a 2 pack a day smoker having an asthma attack.  They put a pulse-ox monitor on me and my oxygen levels had dipped below 70.  Luckily, the longer I sat taking deep breaths, the better it got and no further medical intervention was needed.  They kept me in the first aid tent till my oxygen levels were over 95 and they had me drinking Gatorade and talking.  They even had finisher's medals in the tent just in case people couldn't make it to the line of volunteers to get theirs.

I was still pretty wheezy as I slowly made my way to the finisher's area where I was to meet up with everyone.  I found Jody first, and while I was trying to tell her what had happened, I teared up again and started losing my breath.   Jody, not knowing what was going on, snapped this picture of me.

I was able to get my breathing under control again, though I struggled the rest of they day with a slight wheeze and cough.

We celebrated everyone's finish with brunch and headed home for a well deserved nap.

I finished the race with a chip time of 1:50:34.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Fool's Run 1/2 Marathon

Some time last year I decided that I wanted to run a spring half-marathon.  I read about the Fool's Run and decided that it was the one for me.  Since it was in BC, it took a lot of planning.  I asked my Mom to go with me as support.  We planned to go out the week before to get used to the time change and so that we could have a vacation together, visiting Victoria and Nanaimo before we arrived in Sechelt to stay with Hilary's parents.

In October, when mom was visiting, the plan changed from her coming out to support me, to her walking the half-marathon!  She figured she walked 5k every day already, so with 5 months to go, she could increase her mileage and be ready to do 21k.

However, neither of us were really able to train as well as we wanted to.  I struggled with a bad knee early on, followed by a frozen shoulder. We both had to deal with the winter weather.  Mom's solution was to take her walking indoors by going to the mall before it opened.  I spent a lot of time at the indoor track - not a fun thing to do.  My longest run at the track was 13k, or 52 laps.

We headed into the race feeling great.  We had 3 goals:  1) Don't die.  2) Finish the course. 3) Have fun.  I have to say, all 3 were a struggle.

I did really well for the 14 km, maintaining an average pace of 10:50 which was well within my goal time. Then I hit the hills.

That was 4 kms of a constant uphill climb of more then 100 m.  I was done.  I ended up walking the rest of the course. By the time I hit the downhill section at km 18, my legs were toast.  My only thought at that point was to just keep going and finish.

Mom is a speedy little walker and spent the entire race about 400 meters in front of me. She had underestimated just how hard this was going to be and just before the final turn into the park with the finish line, she collapsed onto a railing at the side of the road.  She just couldn't go another step.  I quickly caught up to her, got her to lean on me and we continued on.  We were not giving up goal #2 within sight of the finish line.  We crossed together, hand in hand with a finish time of 04:08:31.

After comfort food, showers and well deserved naps, we celebrated.

Mom has declared that "no thank you, never again" will she do a half-marathon.  Me?  I've already signed up for my next on in the fall.  Crazy, I know!

MEC races 1 and 2

On a whim this year I signed up for the MEC race series. 5 races between January and October, all of varying distances, but for a really great low price. I have already run the first 2.

Race One was on January 29th an went through Point Pleasant park.  This was the first time I had ever run in the park and I was a bit worried about the terrain.  Would it be muddy or icy?  It turned out to be a beautiful day, not too cold and the ground was perfect to run on.

This was a 5k run and I finished with  a chip time of 00:52:32.

Race 2 was on April 30th.  Originally I had signed up to do the 10k.  I figured it was a month after I would have finished the Fool's Run Half-Marathon, so doing 10k should be a piece of cake.  Then I checked out the course!

The course started inside the fort at Citadel hill, went around the outer star, up and down the hill leading to the fort (twice), through the grass moats and back into the fort over cobbled walkways with really short doors.  To do the 10k, you went around twice.  The idea of running up that hill 4 times was enough to get me to knock my registration done to 5k.  

The day was clear, but cold and windy and it was a really tough course.  I knew I would struggle with the hills, but the grass in the moat was wet, making it slippery, cobble stone is not fun to run on and trying to duck through doorways while faster runners are trying to pass you is almost impossible.

I finished with a chip time of 00:55:48, which given the route, I was very pleased with.

Believing (again)

It's been almost 4 months since I've updated here.  In that time I've had 3 races that I've wanted to recap (and will get to today), but I just haven't been able to find the words to do it.  Because starting about 6 months ago, I stopped believing in myself.

I didn't believe that I was  real runner.
I didn't believe that I could finish the races.
I just didn't believe in me.

Slumps are hard to dig yourself out of, but I am coming round.

I have a new half-marathon to train for and a plan to follow.  My health is (nearly) good. The weather is almost enjoyable.

I've decided that since I AM going to believe in myself, no matter what, that I've added the message to my body - permanently  - so that I never forget to believe in myself again.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Resolution Run

Start the year of right. Run a 5k race January 1st.

It sounded like a great idea at the time. Several friends were signing up, so I joined them. It fit well with my current training plan, and since I ring in the New Year based on London time (yes they are 4 hours ahead of me, yes I was in bed by 9:00), I didn’t see any downfall. It even had the most decent start time of 11:00 for the revelers who celebrate in their own time zone.

What I failed to factor in was the weather. Silly me.

I woke up to a torrential downpour with the rain driving sideways. The saving grace was that the temperature was at least on the plus side. But still… it was going to be a very soggy run. After some texting back and forth with Jody while each of us hinted at not going, I finally got my act together and out the door. We waited in the car till the very last second, but even so, I was drenched before I even started.

Once your wet, your wet and there is nothing to do but keep going, so I did. The rain did taper off after a while and I was actually too warm in my jacket. It was a nice run along a beautiful trail, but had the unfortunate layout of ending with a steep uphill incline to the finish. Never my favorite way to end a race.

What matters most is that I started the New Year off on the right foot with 5k on the books.