Saturday, February 23, 2013

HACC 9 mile run 2.23.13

Today I arrived at HACC at our typical meeting place at 8:30am.  I wasn't sure what the weather was going to do, but I was prepared for whatever it would throw at me.  I ended up having too many layers as I warmed up, but I was able to have a positive attitude the whole way through.  Today I told myself that I wasn't trying to break any records, but that I was going to take it easy and enjoy running with my team.  This worked out extremely well because I ran the majority of the run with a few individuals who are running with TNT for the first time.  It was awesome because I was able to remind them that a mile is a mile and that no matter how fast we are going that at least we are moving and going the distance.  Our speed doesn't matter and that seem to help them relax a bit.

Overall I had a difficult exercise week.  I did not make it to the gym at all which impacted my mood throughout the week.  I look forward to my runs as a stress relief and I'm so glad to be able to run with members from TNT that I don't typically run with on a Saturday.  They were talking a lot about fundraising ideas and how I got involved in TNT in the first place.  I recognize that part of the reason that I can still run with TNT (whether or not I'm fundraising) is because I want to instill hope for those who haven't completed half or full marathons before.  The way I see it and the way I try to communicate it is that "if I can do this than so can you."

Overall this run was very successful.  The last 2.5 miles I ran with a member of TNT who I met about a year ago at the first Frozen Foot race (in Etown).  He commented how much more confident of a runner that I am and that he can see that I'm really enjoying myself so much more than I was a year ago.  I am SO thankful for the empowerment that comes from running.  It is quite amazing.

Lastly, (I'm adding this after I originally posted this), I wanted to mention that something that I'm working on starting out slow (AKA not going out too fast at the start of a race).  Today I was successful with this as I started out pretty much the same speed as I finished my run.  For the Chambersburg Half my biggest goal is to run the entire race as consistent speed as possible and I also want to beat my current personal record (PR) of 2:31.  I recognize that this course will be much more hilly, but I know that I am prepared for this :-).

Thanks for reading and remember that I run happy for those who can't!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Hershey 12 mile run 2.17.13

Today, Sunday Feb 17, I did my 12 mile run as my last long run before the taper for the Chambersburg Half which takes place March 9, 2013.

As you know typically I run on Saturdays with a group of people with Team In Training.  I was attending a  Marriage conference with Cindy all weekend so I was unable to run Saturday.  I must say that my body told me on Saturday morning that it was time to run...

I met at 1:30pm across from Hershey High School to do a 12 mile run.  I had forgotten what it was like to go more than 10 miles with some hills or "friends" involved.  I asked for them from my coach because I know I will have many hills during the Chambersburg Half.

It would have been VERY easy just to not do the run this afternoon since my stomach wasn't feeling the greatest last night.  It was also cold and windy.  I decided that even though things weren't ideal that I wanted to get that run in the best I could.  It wasn't pretty, but a mile is a mile.

A friend of mine ran with me this afternoon and I'm pretty sure that it would have been easy to cut it short had I not had someone to push me.  I know I wanted to walk about 2 miles before we did walk for a little bit.  I did go out fast (I think closer to an 8 minute mile pace) which caught up to me in the end.  I have trouble starting to fast and I must figure out a way to start MUCH slower so that I don't run out of gas at the end.

The cool thing we saw was snow geese in the distance.  It was very windy and cold, but I did a decent job of keeping my self-talk in check.  I said things like "I love hills," and "I feel good," "I feel great."

I know know that it is very important for me to "respect the distance" and that there is no such thing for me as an "easy" 12 mile run.  I also learned that running with people is extremely helpful and makes the time and distance fly by.  Furthermore, I learned that changing several things like the date of a long run, time of day of long run, other things with routine before the long run is not wise and that it makes things more challenging.  Overall, I think I was dressed fairly well for the run and I was warm for the most part.  The only real issues I had was convincing myself to keep going and my face was very cold.

I'm so thankful for my TNT family.  They rock!  Running happy for those who can't!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Running quote

Running has always been a relief and a sanctuary—something that makes me feel good, both physically and mentally. The best thing about running is the joy it brings to life.

Kara Goucher


Saturday, February 9, 2013

2.10.13 Negley run with TNT

I woke up this morning and checked the weather and it said 21 with a real feel of 11 degrees.  It was very windy, but I knew I wanted to get in my 10 miles regardless of how comfortable I felt.  The only time I was actually cold was at the beginning while we were waiting for the rest of the TEAM to show up.  After we looped around City Island I felt pretty good.  I was able to use several layers and that made a big difference.  

The hardest part of the run was when we were running into the wind from Maclay to Division.  Those two miles were rough, but other than that everything seemed to go smoothly.  I ran at a fairly steady pace of a little bit over 10 min/mile which is very close to how fast I ran last week.

The part of the run that I enjoy the most is the conversation with my fellow TNT runners.  I like having the opportunity to see other runners improve.  I know this sounds crazy, but I want to be able to run for a very long time.  After 5k race I ran in January I went up to two of the older guys who got age based awards and I shook their hand and said "I want to be running when I'm your age."  This is not just a fad for me.  I want this to be a lifestyle and to impact what I eat and how I live my life.

Confession:  the ice bath that I did today wasn't nearly as helpful as it could have been because I made it too cold and I had a hard time staying in the cold water long enough to get the full benefits.  If I'm sore tomorrow I have no one but myself to blame.

I am scheduled for the second race of the Frozen Foot 5k.  Due to time constraints and the reality that I have 12 miles on the schedule I have decided that I won't be running that race.  It's about 30 minutes away and I really could use that extra hour to run my miles rather than driving.  This is also partly so I can put family time as a priority as we will be at a marriage conference in Hershey the weekend of Feb 15-17.

This training cycle has been different from every other because I am only running outside on the weekends and I'm spending time on the treadmill and the bike.  I'm also not really logging the normal amount of miles during the week either.  I feel confident that due to my solid runs on the weekend and because I am doing things in the gym that I will be prepared for the Chambersburg Half Marathon.  There is only 28 days until I will be completing this half marathon.  I am using the confidence that I gained from running the Marine Corps Marathon to push through any barriers that I encounter along the way.

Even though I'm not raising money this year for TNT/LLS I am still training with TNT and I anticipate that I will run a full marathon with TNT in 2014 if all goes well.

Thanks for reading and remember to run happy for those who can't run!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

2.2.13 Wildwood run

Today I had 10 miles on the schedule.  I was determined to run strong and run some hills.  I arrived at Wildwood at 730am to run 5 miles before the rest of the team arrived.  I decided that I was going to run relaxed and not try to break any records.  I went on the hills on the backside of the lake.  I need to become reacquainted with hills because everyone is telling me that the Chambersburg Half is hilly.  I warmed up after about a mile and a half until I warmed up.

The second 5 miles were more fun because I was able to get caught up with a few friends that I haven't seen for a few weeks.

I was thinking about why I do this and why I keep going out there even when it was below 20 degrees this morning.
1. I run for those who can't
2.  I run because it's how I cope with stress in my life
3.  I run because I enjoy it
4.  I run because it is an important part of my life and lifestyle.
5.  I run because if I don't I get cranky (just ask my wife!)

The best part of the run was during the last two miles.  I was progressively able to get a little faster.  In some ways it's harder to run in the winter but after the first 7 miles I still had energy to finish faster than I started.

Overall this was one of the better runs I've had in the past month or so.  Remember I run for those who can't :-)

I went to FedEx to pick up my BRIGHT yellow brooks jacket after I left the run.  Very happy with it and I know it will help keep me visible for those who are driving while I'm running.
Once I got home I took a very cold ice bath.  So if running in sub 20 wasn't crazy enough I also took an ice bath.  It's a good thing that I fully believe in the benefits of an ice bath because of my experience last year.  The only way to describe it is COLD!

If anyone wants to know my mile splits they were
Mile 1-5 - 11:08, 10:44; 10:18; 10:52; 10:30
Mile 6-9 - 10:20, 10:05; 10:00; 9:03

This run felt great (except the 1.5 miles while I warmed up).  As you can see I ran faster during the latter part of the run.  This is what I am trying to train myself to do :-)

Remember to "Run Happy"!