Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What is Your Number?

Yesterday I read a post that really struck home with me.  Mel from Tall Mom on the Run wrote about embracing her "big" body.  I have been reading Mel's blog for a few years and love what she has to say.  She was a college basketball player and is tall, obviously.  Being tall has its pluses, but as a runner we are reminded that tall also means big.  But there is one thing that I want to scream out to everyone who underestimates me at races, just because I am "big" doesn't mean I am slow.  This is definitely not the case with Mel, either.  She is a fast Boston Marathon qualifier!

In January, a new show started on ABC during the day called The Revolution.  I don't actually watch TV during the day, but I sometimes keep it on while I am studying and watch a story if it seems interesting.  The Revolution is about becoming healthy and creating your own revolution.  This week the topic is "What is Your Number?" and on Monday, everyone in the audience were wearing shirts with their weight on the front.  This made me stop and think, because, I hate the number that I see on that scale.  Would I wear my weight on my shirt to show you right now?  Absolutely not.

But......I am no longer focused on that number like I used to be.  I am coming on my five year anniversary from when I joined Weight Watchers.  I am down 85-90 pounds depending on the week, but today I don't know what I weigh.  I don't know my number, because the scale is a source of stress to me.  Currently I am training for the Boston Marathon.  Running the best possible marathon is my goal right now.  Yes, I would love to be in Hopkinton at a low weight, but that is not my main goal.  What I have learned while training for 16 marathons is that it is very difficult for me to lose weight while training.  I am not saying you can't do it, but it doesn't work for me.

Accepting that I can not diet during marathon training was hard at first.  I am trained to think that if I had a "cheating" weekend that I need to hop back on the wagon and limit my calories on Monday morning.  This doesn't work when Monday morning equals a 10 mile run.  In November, after reading a Sports Nutrition book (I blogged about it here), I stopped focusing on a NUMBER that I put into my mouth and have since started listening to my body.  At first it was so hard to do this and it was SO scary.  I was eating double the amount of food that I was used to.  But something finally clicked.  The number on that scale didn't budge much, but the number on my clothes did.

In December, I was out to lunch for my birthday in my favorite pair of jeans.  They were falling off of me.  My sister talked me into heading down to the Gap and finding a pair that would fit me.  (I hate hate hate jeans shopping, but that is a story for another day.)  I left the mall that day in a jeans size that I had never seen before.  Funny enough, I still fear wearing those jeans.  The number seems too small for me and I am afraid to put them on and have them not fit.  I put them on again last week after a good month of them sitting in my closet and they fit a tiny bit better.  It is a silly number, but I can't get it out of my head.

Ignoring my number and embracing my body has been especially difficult the past 6 months.  I have begun meeting a lot of new blogging friends and they are all tiny compared to me.  I want to say that I am confident and that it doesn't bother me when I tower over a friend, but this is not the case.  I see pictures like this....
And this...
And instead of seeing the powerful woman that I am....I see my waistline that isn't thin, the extra skin on my legs, and compare myself to people that I am not nor will ever be.  This is what my mind sees when I see these pictures...
I know I no longer look like this, but at my highest weight, there were times when I had more confidence in my body than I do now.  I have pictures of myself in a bikini, and I didn't hide from the camera like I do now.  

Embracing my body is an up-hill battle.  I am so proud of how far I have come.  Learning to accept that I am not a small person is especially hard when I am involved in a sport where everyone around me is small.  But this body that is not small has run a 3:32 marathon.  My larger waist has run a 1:41 half marathon.  And that skin flying in that picture was on its way to a 21:15 5k.  This body also carried around two beautiful girls that I could not imagine my life without.  My body may not be perfect but everyday it proves to me how wonderful and strong it is.

Would you wear your number on your shirt? Do you compare your body to other runners and let it bother you?


Monday, February 20, 2012

Boston Marathon Reads & Video + Giveaway Winners!

It is school vacation week here in Massachusetts and it couldn't have come at a better time. I don't have the entire week off of school myself but I do have a few days off. I have welcomed this break like you wouldn't believe this past weekend. I got some running done and some reading for fun.

This morning I stayed in bed a few extra hours to finish my book. I have been reading 26.2 Miles to Boston: The Boston Marathon Experience from Hopkinton to Copley Square.
While I was down at the Disney Marathon, Erin from See Mom Run Far recommended that I read this book, and I am really grateful for the suggestion.

The book goes mile by mile of the Boston Marathon giving you details of the actual course and then historical facts of the race and course itself.  The author of the book is a local who grew up watching the Boston Marathon.  After a terrible health scare he decides he is going to run the 100th Boston Marathon in 1996.  He runs the race as a bandit and gives you his point of view of his 4-1/2 hour marathon.  The facts thrown into the book are sometimes interesting and sometimes distracting.  I really did enjoy learning some of the trivia, but I felt a lot of the facts were filler in order to fill the pages of the book.  The actual detail of the course, especially inclines and turns were my favorite part of the book.  I am tempted to reread the book in order to highlight these parts.  I would like to know this course as best as I can before April 16th so that there will be no surprises.  He reminds readers when to slow down, for example on the early downhills and at Wellesley College where are all the screaming girls are.  He points out small hills such as on a highway overpass and the Citgo hill at mile 25 that no one mentions, but he says you will notice.  If you are about to run Boston or just want to learn more about this historical race, I would definitely give this book a read.

A fellow member of my Brooks ID team sent me a link this week to his website that includes lots of information on the Boston Marathon.  I highly recommend checking it out if you are looking for current facts of the race and even a "What to Expect on Race Day" story.

And if you are still looking for more Boston motivation, watch the following video of the Duel in the Sun of Dick Beardsley and Alberto Salazar from the 1982 Boston Marathon.  What an amazing race!

Finally, I have two winners today.  My Sparkly Soul winner from last week never came forward so I had to pull another number for the Sparkly Soul headbands.  My new winner is:


The winner of the EverStride prize pack is:

You guys have a week to contact me to claim your prizes!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

My Valentine & EverStride Review/Giveaway

Oh Valentine's Day, you cause so many problems in this married woman's life.  Valentine's Day came and went in our home and not surprisingly, my husband blew it off.  My husband is an amazing man.  Great father, very loving, and incredibly helpful.  When it comes to being romantic, ehhh, he is lacking in that department.  Every year I get my hopes up that my hint dropping will work, but alas, it doesn't.  So yeah, Valentine's wasn't a romantic holiday for me, but I did enjoy myself.

My day started off incredibly busy.  I had 15 miles on my schedule and I wanted to get that done while Gabbie was at preschool.  Three hours to fit in a 15 mile run, no problem, as long as am I prepared to run as soon as I drop her off.  So the morning was spent getting the girls ready for Valentine's Day.  I bought them new shirts to wear and gave them mini-Valentine Barbies.  The Valentines were packed in their bags and I had my cookies to bring to the Preschool party.  One hour goes by way too fast in the morning.
I packed the kids in the car as well as my water belt and did my fun morning drop-off.  After the kids were at school, I headed out on my 15 mile run from the preschool, so that if I happened to have a bad day, I would still be back in time to pick up Gabbie at noon.  The first 13 miles of that run were wonderful.  I had all these thoughts in my head of how my new red running shoes were my Valentine today because they carried me on such a fun run.  The miles kept ticking off and I was cruising along.  
And then, my legs decided no more.  As you can see from the elevation profile, the first five miles were all downhill.  Unfortunately, the next eight, were uphill.  It wasn't a steep climb, but it was never ending.
I was able to push through the hills, at a decent pace, but once I finally peaked them I wanted to lay on the ground and go to sleep.  The last two miles were downhill, but looking at my drop in pace you would have thought they were the steepest hills of the run.  BUT, I would call the fact that I pushed myself to exhaustion a success.  Two medium-long runs done by Tuesday, so happy with that!

Now onto a review.  A few months ago, Steph was raving about EverStride.  They make skin care products for athletes including an anti-chafe stick.  I am a creature of habit and love my BodyGlide.  I was really hesitant to try the product because I had never heard of it and was afraid of the chafing that I would get if the product wasn't good.

Fortunately, EverStride offered to send me their anti-chafe stick to try out and review.  Being the person who is hesitant to change, I was afraid to try something new before Disney.  I can't run more than 3 miles without chafing, so I need a product that is incredibly strong.  After the Disney Marathon, I finally committed to using only EverStride to see how effective it would be.

After using EverStride exclusively for over a month now, I can now say I love the product.  The first thing I noticed when trying out the anti-chafe stick is that it is much thicker than BodyGlide.  At first this annoyed me.  I would put the EverStride on my toes and see the balm, and it would be chunky in some spots.  Because of the thickness, I notice that the stick gets worn in spots when I apply it to my feet.  You can see grooves in the stick from where I rub it on my toes.  The fact that it was going on so thick made me think that the product wouldn't last as long, but I was wrong.

The stick claims that EverStride "Helps prevent chafing and blisters and helps restore dry, cracked, chafed skin."  After a week of using it on my toes, I noticed that not only was I getting less blisters on my toes, but my skin was getting softer in those areas.  I never even imagined that it would help my feet beyond the prevention of blisters.  Also, the spot under my sports bra is a huge source of pain in terms of chafing. BodyGlide rarely can stop my chafing from the sports bra.  Not only has EverStride stopped the chafing and bleeding, but my skin is healing there.  My skin has been chapped from chafing for months and it is finally returning to my normal smooth skin.  This is a huge relief!

Finally, one of my favorite part of EverStride is how long the stick has lasted.  My current EverStride anti-chafe stick is going on more than a month of continuous use.  And the stick still has quite a few uses left on it.  This is a huge selling factor to me as I hate running out of any product especially one that I use daily.  I am so excited that I found a product that is both effective and doesn't disappear quickly.

EverStride also has multiple other products including foot cream and facial cream.  EverStride was great to offer to giveaway all 3 products to one of my readers.


To enter the giveaway please do the following:
  • Leave a comment on this post. 
  • For an extra entry, tweet about my giveaway and leave a comment saying you tweeted.

This sweepstakes is open for US Residents Only and you must be 18 to enter. The sweepstakes runs February 15, 2012 until Sunday, February 19, 2012 at 11:59pm EST. I will be using random.org to pick the winner and will announce the winner Tuesday, January 10, 2012. The prize is being provided by EverStride and has a prize value of $46.49. One winner will be selected. I will announce the winner in a blogpost on February 20th and the winner will have one week to contact me before a new winner will be chosen. I will ship the item to the winner as soon as it is possible. Incase of a technical glitch and entries are lost, all entrants must resubmit comments for entries. You may enter by leaving a comment on this post and receive one bonus entry by Tweeting about the contest.

Good Luck!!

**I was not compensated for this review.  EverStride provided me with their product to try and review. My review is based on my own opinion.

Monday, February 13, 2012

School Can't Slow Me Down and Sparkly Soul Winner!

This past weekend was a whole lot of this...
And this...
And don't forget this...


I should have heeded the warnings when a classmate in my Chemistry class told me to watch out for my Anatomy and Physiology professor.  She said, "Change Professors!"  I thought to myself, how bad could it really be?  Oh my goodness, it is that bad!  Tonight is only my 4th week of class and we are on Test #2 and Test #3.  I mean, how could you possibly give us one test for two chapters, why don't we divide it into two 100 point tests so that we can be stressed out that much more?  And not only do we have to take two big tests tonight, but we also have to turn in our research paper topic and an entire unit's worth of homework.

So needless to say, I spent my weekend on my couch reading, studying, and researching.  It was boring, tedious, and tiring, but I think I am ready for my double-exam night.

Before my weekend of studying started I had an amazing week of training as you can see above.  I moved back my schedule in order to accommodate Boston group training runs, so I am now running Monday-Saturday and taking Sunday off.  My forced rest last week helped make the transition easier and my body really responded well to my training.  Other than my 5 mile runs, which were recovery runs, all my runs last week averaged a pace of 8:40 or below.  

On Saturday, we had a threat of a snowstorm and I had a marathon pace run on the schedule.  I didn't want to risk having to slow down because of snow, so I headed to Steph's house to run on her treadmill while she did the elliptical and then chatted with me.  I warmed up for 7 miles at about a 9:00 pace.  The next 10 miles, I bumped the treadmill up to a 7:53 pace and was able to cruise along without much problem at all.  I was so relieved to have my first marathon pace run done for this training cycle and that it went so well.  The only thing that didn't go well is my toe.  Back in December I noticed pain in the joint of my big toe.  I don't know when the pain disappeared but it did and I forgot about it.  Well the pain is back and it is pretty bad, or at least it was on Saturday.  Google is not your friend when you have an ailment, let me tell you.  I Googled big toe pain and came up with an assortment of problems it could be.  My current treatment is ice, anti-inflammatories when it is bad, and I switched shoes.  I ran 13 miles this morning and my toe hurt but nothing like Saturday, so I am hoping that was a good sign.

I also made cookies yesterday to send to preschool and worked on Valentines with the kids.  One week and I can take a breather, but first I need to make it through this busy week.  Thank goodness for my running, it is the one time I let myself step away from life and focus on me.  Like this morning.  13 miles at 5am, that doesn't sound so fun.  But 13 miles while watching my favorite vampires for 2 hours, that was a nice break from studying.  :)

And now for the Sparkly Soul headbands winner.  I used the Random Number Generator and the winner is:


Jennifer C., please email me so you can pick out your headbands!  :)  And remember, if you didn't win, you can still receive 15% off your order at Sparkly Soul by entering FITFLUENTIAL at checkout through the end of February.

Happy Monday everyone! 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

What You Didn't Know About Me

I was tagged by Amanda and Caroline,  and haven't had the time to sit and write the post.....So here goes 11 random facts about myself.

  1. I love camping.  Ahhh, I never thought I would say that in a million years, but I look forward to our yearly camping trips now.  A few years ago, my husband and I were planning our weekend in Vermont for the Vermont City Marathon.  We were trying to save money and he suggested camping.  You would have thought he told me to sleep on the floor of a bathroom, I was so appalled.  I swallowed my pride and rented a sleeping mat and camped.  I loved it.  I have since went on two week long camping trips with my family and will camp at Vermont for the marathon every year.
  2. I love basketball and if someone told me I could play semi-professional basketball but would have to give up the sport of running first.  I would.  I love basketball that much.
  3. I love reality television.  We aren't talking Biggest Loser here, I can't get into that.  I am talking Real World on MTV.  When I saw there was a new season of the Real World Challenge last week, I got stupidly excited.  I stayed up way later than normal to watch my people in yet another drama-filled crazy show.
  4. My husband fell in love with me after he found out I had a TIVO.  Yes, a TIVO, one of the original DVR's.  He claims that by owning a TIVO, it proved we had a lot in common because most women he met were far from being into geeky technology stuff like him.  On a side note, we cancelled our TIVO service a few years ago, and it made me sad.  What brought us together, was now gone.  :)
  5. I used to love soap operas, particularly All My Children and One Life to Live.  Another embarrassing fact, I cried during the last episode of One Life to Live last month.  Before I started running, I used to go to Disney ever year for their Super Soap Opera Weekend where you could meet the soap stars.  It was a photo from that weekend with one of my favorite stars that convinced me that I needed to change my life....I joined Weight Watchers the day after I got back and now go to Disney for Marathon Weekend instead.
  6. I love doughnuts.  UGH.  This one is terrible.  I don't eat them anymore, but I credit those dumb little chocolate donuts they sell at gas stations to the reason why I gained an insane amount of weight after college.  If you asked me what treat I would want after a long run, it would be a Boston Creme doughnut from Dunkin Donuts.  Sigh, I don't eat them anymore because they are a bad trigger food for me.
  7. I hate writing and I never let anyone read papers I wrote in college other than the professor.  As you can see, blogging is taking a huge step out of my comfort zone because my writing is on display for whoever to read it.  Every time I am about to press publish on a post, I get very uncomfortable and scared.  As soon as I start getting comment emails, I finally relax and feel like my writing that day didn't totally suck.  But, I go through this daily, I don't think I will ever get used to this.
  8. I dislike dogs, a lot.  I have always been uncomfortable around dogs my whole life.  I hate getting jumped on.  I hate the smell of them.  I kind of find them annoying.  A few years ago, I got bit by a dog on my run.  I didn't know whether it was a coyote or a dog, I just knew it bit me through my running tights and I had to have rabies shots because the farmer whose yard the animal came out of claims it wasn't their dog even though there was a few other dogs there with it.  I am jealous of people that run with their dogs, but also get annoyed when I am on the trail and someone doesn't have their dog on a leash.  We are not all dog lovers, people.  Please keep your dog next to you.
  9. I love decorating cakes and cookies.  If I knew I could open my own pastry business immediately, I would go to school culinary school.  Unfortunately, I know out of school, I would have to take a low paying job and I am not going further into debt for a low paying job.
  10. I don't wear makeup, and I don't even know how to put it on.  I am afraid this may become a problem soon as I dislike my aging face and wonder if makeup will make me feel better.  I guess when my daughter is old enough to wear makeup we can take a class together to learn what we are doing.
  11. I love being a mom more than I ever thought I would.  I love the everyday challenges.  I love the conversations with my girls.  I love the things they say.  I love the hugs they give us.  To say that I am satisfied with my little family is an understatement.  I don't know how I ever got this lucky.
And now here are Amanda's questions:

  1. What is your favorite TV show?       90210--Yes the current one, I told you I like weird shows.
  2. Skiing: downhill, cross country or water?     None--Never tried any.
  3. Favorite season?     Spring--Love the weather and marathon season!
  4. Peanut butter or almond butter?     Peanut butter, yum!
  5. Did you play sports in high school?     Basketball and swimming
  6. Who's your favorite singer band?     Glee???  Otherwise I love Pink and Katy Perry.
  7. Country music: yay or nay?     It's OK.
  8. What's your favorite drink at Starbucks?     Skinny Awake Tea Latte with a shot of caramel
  9. What is your current fitness goal?     Boston Marathon!
  10. What's your favorite type of exercise?     Running  :)
  11. What's your dream job?     Physical Therapist
And Caroline's questions:
  1. What is your favorite brand of running shoes?     Brooks!  :)
  2. Favorite book you have read recently?     Hunger Games
  3. Letterman or Lenu?     Umm, Letterman I guess.
  4. How are you today?     Having an awesome day.
  5. Who is someone you admire?     Kara Goucher, Michelle Obama, Ellen Degeneres.  :)
  6. Reality TV: yes? no? if yes....confess the worst.     See above!
  7. What makes you laugh?     My kids and The Big Bang Theory.
  8. Why are the Kardashians famous again?     Ummm, yeah, I don't know either.
  9. Favorite Olympic moment?     Oh, gosh, everything.  I love the Olympics!
  10. What is something you cannot stand?     Being injured.  It just sucks.
  11. When is your next race?     Boston Marathon, April 16th!
And, I am not tagging anyone else, because I am probably the last person to get to this.  This was actually kind of fun, once I started writing.  I'd love to answer more questions in a future post, so feel free to leave questions in the comments!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Sparkly Soul Headband Review and Giveaway

When it comes to running gear, I am pretty picky.  I have spent so much money in the past five years and have many products just laying around that I have purchased and I don't feel like they make my running easier.

Sparkly Soul asked a bunch of FitFluential ambassadors to try out their headbands and put reviews on their blogs.  I was more than excited to do this as I have been seeing them pop up all over people's blogs and I really wanted to try them.

One of my hesitancies to order a Sparkly Soul headband was my difficulties that I normally have with headbands.  I have a big head and I get headaches easily from tight headbands.  From my start of running, I have had headbands flying off the back of my head while I am running.  In summary, I have bad luck with headbands.

I tried out both the thin and wide headbands from the Sparkly Soul website.  The thin headband is 3/8" thick and the wide is 5/8" thick.  When I first received them I got really excited.  They are incredibly cute.  I put the thin headband on and headed to my treadmill for my first test run.

I think I ran 6 miles that day and the headband did not budge the entire time.  As you can see from the photo I took of the inside of the headband, there is a soft velvet on the inside that prevents slipping.  The velvet goes all the way around therefore the headband is one continuous piece.  This is the first time I saw that and feel like it helped to keep the headband from moving.  Another thing I noticed right away was that the sparkles did not come off during my run.  I have worn sparkly things before and have ended up with sparkles all over my hands and face.  The sparkles stayed on the headband and after 3 weeks of wearing the headband, they continue to stay that way.  The headband looks the same today as the day I received it.

The last thing I noticed during that first run is that I did not notice the headband the entire time.  This is huge.  I have tried other popular running headbands and have to pull it within a mile of my run because it is putting too much pressure on my big head.  My Sparkly Soul headband fit snuggly but did not feel like it was squeezing my head.

Since my first test run, I have continued to wear both the wide and thin headbands on runs and have been incredibly impressed with them.  They function better than I expected when looking at them before.  As far as how they look, I love them.  They are very cute and I have actually begun wearing them everyday to keep my hair out of my face.  I always have my hair in a ponytail, but the stray hairs tend to drive me crazy.  I finally found a headband that I can wear the entire day that I feel cute in and don't get headaches.  I also think they look cute wearing them together.

Another bonus, for me with these headbands is that they also work for my daughter.  This past year, we grew out my daughter's hair, so she has been in a headband nearly everyday.  I have invested a lot of money in good headbands for her as she used to lose them at school.  Yesterday, I let Bridget go to school for the first time in my wide Sparkly Soul headband and she came home and said it didn't fall out once.  Bridget has a small head.  The fact that I am able to wear the headband and then have it not be overly stretched for her is quite impressive.  Today, she actually coordinated her outfit so that she could wear it again.  :)



So, I obviously, really love these headbands and am so excited that I get to give away both a wide and thin headband to one of my readers.

To enter, you can do one (or all) of the following (Please leave a comment for each entry):
  1. Head over to SparklySoul.com and tell me what headband color is your favorite.
  2. Follow Sparkly Soul on Twitter @SPARKLYSOULINC
  3. Tweet about this giveway: "I want to win a @SPARKLYSOULINC non-slip headband from @robinbn Enter to win here: http://westfordmommy.blogspot.com/2012/02/sparkly-soul-headband-review-and.html "
Sparkly Soul is also offering a discount code to my readers.  You can receive 15% off any orders through March 1, 2012 by using the discount code "FitFluential".

Good luck and thanks for entering!

*You must be 18 years old to enter. The sweepstakes runs February 7, 2012 until February 12, 2012 at 11:59pm EST. I will be using random.org to pick the winner and will announce the winner Monday, February 13, 2012. The prize will be provided by SparklySoul.com. One winner will be selected. I will announce the winner in a blogpost on February 13th and the winner will have one week to contact me before a new winner will be chosen. SparklySoul.com will ship the item to the winner as soon as it is possible. Incase of a technical glitch and entries are lost, all entrants must resubmit comments for entries. 

**I was not compensated for this post.  I received two headbands from Sparkly Soul to try out and review. My review is based on my own opinion.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Super 5k Race Report

Today I ran the Super 5k Road Race in Lowell, Massachusetts for my 3rd time.  The race is about 15 minutes from where I live, so I have done many races on this course and love to go back.

Backing up to yesterday.  I ran 6 miles with my last 2 at tempo pace of around 7:30 pace.  This was my first run post-Norovirus and I felt it.  My stomach felt awful and I had no energy.  My plan was to run long.  About 4 miles into my run, I decided a long run was not going to happen, so I picked up my pace to try and finish out strong.  I felt terrible when I was done.  The rest of the day I was tired and my stomach was not happy.  My 5k was looking like it may not happen, but I took it easy last night.  I ate oatmeal for dinner and went to bed early.  I had hope that I would at the very least run the race.

I woke up this morning with a headache, but my stomach felt pretty good.  I ate a bagel for breakfast and waited to see how I felt.  The race had a noon start time, which really helped.  I got ready for my race and headed to Lowell.

I met up with Janine and Steph before the race.  I love running races with friends and today was no exception.  Having someone to talk to really eases the nerves and made me forget that I might not feel the greatest.  

I only warmed up for 1/2 a mile.  I usually like to run 1-2 miles before a 5k, but I didn't want to risk an upset stomach so really took it easy.  It was about 29 degrees and sunny, so perfect running conditions.  We lined up pretty close to the front of the pack which was a good thing as the race had about 3 times as many people running as last time.  They announced the start pretty quickly and we were off.

The first quarter mile was quite a bit of weaving as usual.  My goal today was to run strong and hope that I could hold on for a sub-21:30.  (This isn't a PR, but I wanted a strong race, not a PR today) Within the first quarter of a mile I got passed by a woman pushing a jogging stroller.  I looked down at my Garmin and saw 6:25 pace.  Wow, that lady was cruising!  I settled into a 6:40 pace.  I knew that I probably wouldn't sustain this pace for the whole race, but I felt pretty good so went with it.  At the end of mile 1, there is a small hill and I passed Stroller Mama.  I have to point out, she didn't finish too far behind me, love it!  I passed quite a few people on the hill but knew my time was going to expire soon.  Mile 1 clocked in at 6:40.  Wow, so happy to see a sub-7 minute mile.

Mile 2, is when the energy started draining quickly.  The first half of the mile, I was still passing people, but I was really tired.  At about mile 1.5 you turn to head back and I was still holding onto my sub-7 minute pace.  I wasn't going as fast as my previous 6:40 pace, but I knew if I held strong I could manage my 21:30.  I hit mile 2 in 6:46.  Woo, love it again!

Mile 3....oh how I hate thee.  When I ran my 5k in December, I remember hurting worse than I did today.  But today, I was not feeling it.  I wanted to push stronger to stay under 7 and I couldn't do it.  My legs were slowing down even though my brain was trying to tell them to go faster.  I started to get passed, but I was still passing people.  I guess I wasn't alone.  I hit mile 3 and saw 7:08.  Sigh.  Outside my goal, now I wasn't sure if I would hit my goal.


Just before mile 3, you turn the corner toward the finish line and hit an incline.  Yuck, I hate this.  It isn't a hill, but when you run hard, it still hurts.  Once I hit mile 3, I picked up the pace a bit.  Once I saw the clock, I picked it up even more.  The clock hadn't clicked over to 21 yet!  I finished the last 0.1 miles at a 6:01 pace and finished the race with a time of just under 21:15 for an overall pace of 6:50.  15 seconds below my goal time and less than 20 seconds slower than my PR!  Success!

So I didn't PR today, but I am beyond happy.  A year ago, I couldn't imagine running sub-7 mile pace for an entire 5k, and I did today after being sicker than I have been in years for an entire week.  I know my sub-20 minute 5k is in me.  I would love to try for it sooner than later, but I have a slightly more important race that I need to resume training for tomorrow.  And, yes, I am back to training tomorrow.  AGAIN.  Bring on the miles.



Thursday, February 2, 2012

Under the Weather

Hello from my couch.  I am on day 3 of a stomach bug that doesn't seem to want to escape me.  Monday night I was up all night with my youngest who was throwing up.  The next morning I put her on the floor of my living room to rest.  An hour into school day, the school nurse calls saying my oldest is feeling sick.  I spent Tuesday afternoon helping her throw up in a bucket and not on my floors.  By late afternoon, she was moaning, but feeling better.

I hopped on the treadmill for what would be my last run of the week.  I got in my 12 mile run pretty easily.  I felt strong and averaged a sub-9 minute pace.  I got done running and headed to the kitchen to replenish some of my lost calories.  That is when it hit me.  I could barely stomach a Luna bar and one bottle of water.  I thought what I was feeling in my head so I got ready for class and started driving.  I made it 10 minutes into my drive and turned around.  I headed to my couch and spent the evening there.  Getting sick after a 12 mile run has proven to be harder on my body that I would like.  I woke up incredibly dehydrated yesterday with cramps in my lower back.  I was hoping I would wake up feeling better today, but again, I am back on my couch and unable to eat.  I have my Nuun in my water bottle and am hoping I am missing some electrolytes and I can get rid of this awful feeling very soon.

I have only missed one class so far and now two runs.  Missing runs is mentally killing me, but I know getting healthy is a priority.  I signed up for a Superbowl 5k on Monday before the house got sick so I am hoping I will make it to the starting line with Steph, Janine, and Meaghan.  I have done this race a few times, so a good time would be nice, but not expected anymore.