Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Taking a look at my priorities

On Sunday I did a three-mile run that was really crummy. I felt sick, I walked a bunch - it just wasn't good. There were two reasons why it went so poorly:

1) I started out way too fast. I wanted to push myself, but all I did was make myself ill.
2) I ate shortly before I headed out to run. Normally I run first thing in the morning before I eat anything, or I wait more than an hour after eating.

After that poor experience, I had to re-evaluate what my priorities are. I keep pushing myself to go faster, but I've decided that right now my main priority is getting in the running mileage I need for training. Speed has to be a secondary concern.

So tonight after work, I headed out for a six-mile run. I focused on keeping a nice, steady, reasonable pace instead of worrying about going faster, faster, faster all the time. And it was a great run. I ran the whole six miles - no walk breaks. I felt good the whole time. Yup, it was a very slow pace but I accomplished my goal of getting in the mileage I needed and feeling good while doing it.

Tomorrow morning I'm scheduled for two miles. Since it's a short run, I can push myself a little on the pace but I'm not going to get crazy.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A BIG group run

Today was a Saturday morning group run with Team in Training. This is actually the first Saturday run I've been able to attend since I joined and it was a big-deal day compared to the typical group run.

Today the people who are doing fall marathons were doing their 20-mile runs (or 12-mile runs for those doing half marathons). So TNT brought ALL the training teams together from across the Detroit area at one park. And the local running store chain, Running Fit, also had a big contingent of running groups there.

It was such a huge group (hundreds of people) that the roads were actually closed down so we could do our run. And TNT set it up just like a race, with a time clock, racing numbers for everyone, and water stations set up all the way. Plus at the end, there was tons of food for everyone. (Like chocolate chip muffins which I didn't eat because I'm still working to lose weight, dang it!) All in all, it was very cool.

I only had to run six miles today so I was done early and helped hand out water for a while. I love the encouraging atmosphere of TNT.

Wait, did I just write that I "only had to run six miles?" Ha! That makes it sound like it was nothing, but six miles is still a challenge for me. This was only the second time I've run that distance and I'm happy to say that I beat last week's total time for 6 miles by nearly 3 1/2 minutes. Wooo! I was really working to push myself today.

I also checked my time at the 5k mark because I wanted to compare it to my time from last week's 5k race. I beat my time by over a minute, so I'm hopeful that in next week's Brooksie's Way 5k I'll improve on my previous race time.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The training continues

This week I had to mix up my training schedule a little bit. I was scheduled to do a 4-mile run on Tuesday and 3 miles on Thursday. I did the 4 miles on Tuesday without a problem, which made me really happy.

Since I was going out of town for work from Wednesday evening through Thursday night, I decided to move my 3-mile run to Wednesday morning instead. My legs felt totally dead for some reason - maybe those 4 miles on Tuesday, on top of Sunday's 6 mile run and 5 mile hike, were taking their toll. Yet when I checked my time at the end of the run it turns out that it was my fastest pace all week. Not that my fastest pace is ever fast!

So I didn't run on Thursday or today and I'm itching to get back to it. I don't want to overtrain so I'm following the schedule as faithfully as I can, so I kept today as an off day as planned. But tomorrow, we have a 6-mile training run. Unlike last week I am totally looking forward to this! It's going to be a group run and a big event. More about that tomorrow!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Another 5k

I enjoyed my first 5k race experience so much that I've signed up for another one. I'll be running in The Brooksie Way 5k on Sunday, October 5. My goal is simply to run my heart out and beat the time I achieved at the St. John Applefest 5k. I know I can do better!

I chose this one because it's coming up soon and also because it takes place on a Sunday instead of Saturday. Saturdays are when TNT group training runs are held and I want to make sure to go to as many of those as possible. I still put in the miles either way, but it's nice to have the support of the group.

I'll be in search of more 5k races that I can do in the fall.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Training milestone

Today I was scheduled for a six-mile training run. I must admit that I was totally dreading it. Prior to today, the longest run I've had was 4.5 miles and it was pretty miserable.

It was gorgeous today, in the low 60s and sunny when I went out to run this morning. I promised myself that I could take a walk break after mile 4 and mile 5 if I wanted to. But after I turned around at mile 3 I was feeling pretty good and wasn't watching the mileage calculator any more since I was just running back to my start point. I looked at my distance and realized I'd already gone past mile 4. So I figured, may as well keep going until I get to mile 5.

But then a little while later I found I was already past mile 5. Sooo, why stop when I had less than a mile left to run? I ran it out and felt fantastic when I was done. I can't believe I ran six miles without stopping!

This afternoon, my awesome boyfriend David and I went out for a 5-mile hike. I do believe I'll be pretty sore tomorrow, but it's all good.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

First 5k!

Today I ran my first 5k race, the St. John Applefest 5k. It was awesome!

It was a beautiful day today, around 60 degrees at race time and sunny. I ran the race with my sister-in-law's friend Jennifer. Jennifer's husband Kevin was also racing but he's a lot faster than me and Jennifer, so we didn't exactly run alongside him. My sister-in-law Milissa, my niece Beth and my awesome boyfriend David were there to cheer us on.

Jennifer and I powered our way through those 3.1 miles and finished a minute faster than I expected us to. It was a great experience to do a race and I can only imagine that the half marathon I'm training for will be even more exciting.

I'm now on the lookout for some additional 5k races that I can do this fall so I can challenge myself to improve on my time.

Tomorrow I have a six-mile training run planned, which will be the first time I've run that distance all at one time. I'm nervous about it but I know I can do it.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Starting a new adventure!

On September 10, 2008, I joined The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's (LLS) Team in Training program. I'm training to run the P.F. Chang's Rock 'n' Roll Arizona Half Marathon on January 18, 2009 and I've committed to raising at least $3,500 to support LLS.

This blog will give training and fundraising updates for everyone who's interested in tracking my progress. In the few days since I joined the Team I've already had many generous contributions from many friends. I want all donors and potential donors to know that I'm working hard on my training and your faith in my ability to do this is appreciated. I won't let you down!