Tuesday’s on the Run: Stubborn Meets its Match

It’s Tuesday, time for Tuesday’s on the the Run!

544_LittleMissStubborn_originalStubborn…

A word that I use often to define myself. But it is not necessarily a bad one.  When I say I am going to do something I don’t back down until it is completed…

But when stubborn meets an uncooperative body it is not a good mix…

Hence why 18 months ago I ended up with a partially torn Achilles and then 18 months of trying to get back into the race…

I expected to have been further along in my training on the road to a full marathon in January.

I assumed that 6 months would be long enough to get back into 13.1 miles and that the next 6 months would be about building distance.

Was I wrong!  Admitting it is the first step, right?

I am not ready to build the distance that it will take to complete the full marathon.  I can’t even seem to complete a half marathon in a time that would keep me from latex nightmares. The last 2 half marathons I have completed are evidence to that reality.

imagesIt’s time for honesty to meet stubborn…

I am NOT physically capable of a FULL MARATHON in January. The heart is there, but the mind is also starting to tell me that I CAN’T DO IT.  Can’t is a word that I don’t normally use or allow anyone to use, but sometimes CAN’T needs to look in the mirror too.

Thank you runDisney for continuing to put off Walt Disney Marathon Weekend 2019 registration! Can you believe, I am saying that?  When has a runDisney participant been happy with yet another delay (err screw up) in something surrounding a run weekend? Honestly, runDisney saved my body from myself.

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So, Thursday, I clicked the HALF MARATHON button for Walt Disney Marathon Weekend 2019 registration (I clicked the full and for once in my life I reviewed my registration before submitting, mind still trying to win over the body in a subconscious way).

My focus for the next 6 months is to start back at 1/2 mile with running intervals (keeping my already 13.1-mile muscle memory by walking the additional mileage above the scheduled training run).  That is right, baby steps in building interval miles, nothing crazy and get to the point where I can interval for the entire half marathon. I also plan to start back into core training next week (modified for the hip) and do a lot more deep tissue massage work.

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More importantly, I am going to volunteer for the full marathon or just get out there and find a spot to cheer from.  I may not be able to run with those crazy people seeking to be part of the 0.5% of the US population that has completed a full marathon but at least I can encourage them on their way (and maybe join the next group in 2020) …

I have a feeling that Stubborn will defeat Reality…(and we need to draw out this midlife crisis a little longer).

Tuesday’s on the Run: A Marathon Runs Through It

It’s Tuesday (okay, I know in reality it is Wednesday and I am a day late), so it’s time to link for Tuesday’s on the Run

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This past weekend, I crossed another state off my quest to “someday” complete a half marathon in every state with the Missoula (Half) Marathon. Why the Missoula Marathon?

brad2Maybe I was hoping to find a young Brad Pitt (circa 1992) waiting for me at the end with nothing but his waders on, after all “A River Does Run Through It” or should a say a marathon runs through it…

Seriously, If you are going to finish an event in every state is seems pretty clear that you pick the best one the state has to offer, and in this case the United States has to offer…

The Missoula Marathon has twice been named as the Best Marathon in the US (2010 by Runner’s World Magazine and in 2017 by BibRAVE).  It has also been named the 2017 Top Marathon for runners like me, Back-of-the-Packers, as well as a Top 10 Bucket List Marathon.

Missoula Marathon YOUTUBE VIDEO  

Now I know that I only completed the half (cause I am lazy that way), but for 10 miles of both events we shared the course…

The Missoula Marathon makes it look easy to be NUMBER 1…

The volunteers and Run Missoula Wild put on an event with EXCEPTIONAL RACE MANAGEMENT. From the moment I submitted my race registration in April, the Missoula Marathon provided weekly communication about the event via email newsletter.  Each week I looked forward to reading about Missoula as well as the race.  It was also nice to get a PRINTED race program at bib pick up, a keepsake. Bib pick up was easy and in a central location that also gave you insight into the finish set up, as well as a chip check for your bib (just in case you are one of those who are running for time).  Parking was easy, buses ran efficiently to the starting line.  The bag check as the best I have ever seen conducted, with a fleet of UPS trucks and men in brown and bags sorted according to bib number waiting on marked trucks as you made your way to the exit chute. The race start, with fireworks, went off smoothly and ON TIME. The finish was a well-oiled machine of stops (medal, bag, time tape, and food) before meeting back up with your own personal cheering squad.

It’s Montana! I knew going to be beautiful and being a fan of the movie (and book) “A River Runs Through it”, I already had my vision of the race course set in my head long before I completed the registration.  Missoula delivers on the promise of one of the most beautiful places to run (and I have completed mountain half marathons in both Colorado and New Mexico) with its 360-degree panoramic view of the mountains during sunrise, run along the river, charming homes on tree lined streets and the dramatic finish over the bridge and across the river into downtown Missoula.

But you want to know the real reason why Missoula is number 1…

The People of Missoula!  It felt like the entire town somehow came out on race weekend. From the countless volunteers who made sure not only did the race go off with out glitches but runners felt safe and welcomed, to the townsfolk who literally lined the sidewalks of the race course and offered their personalized spin on course entertainment…signs, cowbells, cowboys on horseback, a man playing a baby grand on his front lawn in tails, a string quartet, banjos, cowbells, unofficial course treats (including whiskey shots and popsicles) and just shouts of encouragement as you went past. There wasn’t any stretch of the race where there wasn’t someone cheering you on or a water sprinkler set up purposefully to keep you cooled off!

My experience with the Missoula Marathon demonstrated why in the movie that Brad Pitt’s character, Paul, would reply to his brother Norman “Oh, I’ll never leave Montana.” The Missoula Marathon makes you feel like you are part of the community, and who wants to leave a place where you are treated so well?

Oh yes and then there is the bling…

which is just about the size of the Big Montana Sky!

 

 

Tuesday’s on the Run:  June Run Recap

It’s Tuesday, so it is time for Tuesday’s on the Run with Patty, Erika and Marsha

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Where has June gone? I really thought I would be farther along in my training to complete a full marathon in January 2019, but just like my current mental state my body seems to be having its’ own midlife crisis…

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Last month I started having some serious hip issues (to the point it was difficult to walk) and decided it was time to implement the R and I in RICE…Rest & Ice and scale back my training (both my core fitness classes and running).  I gave it 4 VERY LONG weeks and with no improvement, I decided to cry “uncle” and go for the MRI that the chiropractor was encouraging me to do. Can you say sticker shock? At the same time, I just happen to come across a Facebook Ad…

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Airrosti Link

Intrigued, I did some research and made the decision (my insurance would cover all but the co-pay) to schedule a consultation with our local Airrosti provider, Dr. Ramos.  After all, what had I to lose at this point (other than more training time) and maybe if this worked I would save $1200 on that MRI. At my consultation, Dr. Ramos spent a good while just asking questions and then did a little probing of the muscle structures around my hip. I was completely impressed with the depth of the assessment, his verdict…over taxed IT-band at the hip cause my weak rear end muscles, yep my  almost 50 year old butt is out of shape.  He then went over a treatment plan and felt that he could get me to pain free in about 4-5 visits. Seriously, that seemed to good to be true, but left with me with enough optimism to postpone the MRI and this…

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Lovely!  The Airrosti method delivers very specific treatment to the soft tissues (the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and connective tissue throughout the body and around the joints) by manually repairing the tissue through basically what I would describe as a deep tissue massage, but at very specific points (as you can tell on my legs).  Then after 30 minutes of tissue work, it is on to Physical Therapy for another 30 minutes to teach me exercises and stretches to build up strength in the muscles to improve and prevent future issues. After the first 3 visits, I was very discouraged because I was not feeling like there was much improvement (and a lot more pain in other places), but I was determined to last the 5 treatments out.  Something magical happened between visits 4 and 5…

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And no I do not mean Half Marathon #18, the Slacker Half. Yes, that is right I completed a half marathon at a pace that would keep me ahead of those runDisney balloon ladies.  A few days after treatment #4, I started noticing less and less pain and then suddenly, NO PAIN. Almost in total disbelief, I decided that I would give the hip the ultimate test, 13.1 miles, since the half marathon that I had scheduled for the weekend was walker friendly (don’t worry, I was in contact with Dr. Ramos and he knew what I was doing).  During the race I had hip pain but surprisingly the day after, there was no pain (other than thighs who were REALLY sore from 13.1 miles downhill). A few days later, still hobbling from the downhill distance (but no hip pain), I returned excited for appointment #5 to report that I was still pain free in the hip despite my stubborness to complete a downhill half with little training and have Dr. Ramos repair any damage that my stubbornness may have caused.  I gingerly got on the table (did I mention how sore my thighs were) and I swear Dr. Ramos performed a miracle during that 30 minutes on the table because my thighs had found relief from the soreness and I could move a lot easier. More importantly though, he closed out the case on my hip as promised 4-5 visits to be pain free. I do have another appointment scheduled before my next half to go over taping of the IT band around the hip and then do a follow up treatment after the half.  I also have plans for him to do some treatments around the Achilles and shin, just for safe measure. As long as the insurance keeps paying, I will be scheduling a treatment before and after each long distance run of over 13 miles.

Slacker Half Marathon Link

Like I mentioned, I completed half #18, the Slacker Half Marathon, this past weekend.  I picked this half specifically back in March to get in distance training for my goal of a full marathon in January and because of its “walker friendly atmosphere.”  I knew by picking this event that if I had to, I could walk and it would be perfectly acceptable to do so, no rolling up the time mats and everyone leaving before I crossed the finish line (yes, that has happened to me).

The Slacker Half is 13.1 miles downhill from an elevation of over 10,500 feet at the start to about 8,500 feet at the finish from the Loveland Ski Basin to Georgetown, Colorado.  It has to be to the most beautiful half marathon I have completed, plus it was a great excuse to go home to Colorado for a long weekend. Kudos to the race organizers for a VERY WELL run event, super race atmosphere, great course, and fun bling.  

I was very happy with how I finished, just between you and me I ran (intervals) the first 6 miles near the 13 minute mile pacer (which had I continued the last half of the race would have been a huge PR for me), but as the hip started flaring and my body giving out due to lack of training (and yes the altitude), I had to walk the last 7 miles.

Now with my first major distance behind me in over 18 months, I am looking ahead (and crossing my fingers) with #midlifecrisisinprocess to continuing down the #roadtomyfirstmarathon.  Next up a special run on Friday…

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Tuesday’s on the Run: April Running Reflections

It’s Tuesday, so that means I am linking up with Patty, Erika & Marsha for Tuesday’s on the Run and with it being the end of the month it is time to look back on how the month went in terms of running…

AprilShowers

I certainly hope that the old saying that April Showers (which there still continues to be no actual rain where I live) bring May flowers, because April I have had my share of ups and downs, much like the weather and hoping that in May my will bloom into something a little more consistent and focused on the #roadtofirstmarathon.  Who am I kidding?  It would not be my running if it was consistent.  

Highs

  • 8 MilesWith this weekend’s run I will have built my distance to 8 miles of run walk intervals.  My pace is steady over the distance and it a pace that will keep me ahead of the balloon ladies, which is certainly a high, but I still have 18 more miles to go!
  • 1 Round of Core Training Completed-I finished my first ever 6-week cycle of Core Training through the Tribe program at my gym.  It is amazing how far I have come since my first class…from no push-ups to now a steady 10 in a row.  I have already signed up for another 6 weeks.
  • 13 pounds lost-Slow and steady will win the battle of the bulge, or at least I hope it will.  I have now lost 13 pounds since January 8. Yes, it should be more as I constantly find myself fighting the battle of emotional eating. I am trying hard to stay focused and satisfied at a pound a week, plus not give into temptation.  I did have a non-scale victory this month as I fit back into a pair of jeans that were in my closest, so I sized down!
  • 500 Miles-I hit the 500 mile mark earlier this month in my goal to reach 2018 by December 31 at 11:59 pm.  While I am behind I am hoping that summer will bring more time to get out there and just walk.
  • 3 Race Events on the Horizon-I finally pushed the pay and commit button on a couple of races that I have been eyeing. I am officially running the Slacker Half in June, the Missoula Half Marathon in July and my first runDisney Running Short (Mrs. Incredible) which I plan to run to celebrate the official 5-0 mark in my life.

Lows

  • Short RunsI am struggling to get my short runs in each week, which is frustrating since it is only 2 miles or about 30 minutes.  I am so full of excuses…
  • Battle of Which Part of My Lower Body Wants to Have Issues-I my body is certainly feeling the 5-0 approaching and each day another part of the bottom half of my body wants to see if it can bring me down. Shins, Achilles, Knee, Hip…thankfully they each take turns, but still bring doubt and fear into whether or not 26.2 miles will be possible.
  • runDisney postponing Marathon Registration-I was ready to pull the trigger and commit to the marathon last week when registration was supposed to happen, but in true runDisney form they had to make some kind of drama happen…postponing the registration of all the spring 2019 events, which makes the rumor mill go wild as to what is going on.  It also makes me hesitant about committing to a DVC rental for the weekend and I am afraid of no room in the inn, or in my case no cabana on the Poly Beach.

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Looking ahead to May, My goals for May are pretty straight forward…

  • Build my Distance to 11 miles.
  • Get my short runs in.
  • Lose 8 pounds, which will bring me to pre-boot weight.
  • Get to 700 miles by the end of May.

How did your April go?  What are you looking forward to accomplishing in May?  Drop me a comment, I would love to share in your journey with you!

Tuesdays on the Run: Not Feeling Lucky, but Afraid

It’s Tuesday, so that means I am linking up with Patty, Erika & Marsha for Tuesday’s on the Run.

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This week’s topic is “Luck of a Runner” but honestly, I do not feel very lucky when it comes to running lately (cue the whining) …

Running is just supposed to be about putting one foot in front of the other, but unfortunately for me those feet are attached to legs, legs that are attached to a body, a body that is attached to a head, a head that contains a brain. A brain that is telling me that I am afraid of running.

There I said it, I am afraid of running…

Every little ache or discomfort I worry about injury. Every step has me worried that the next step could potentially sideline me again, permanently.  This in turn has affected my motivation to get out there and train. When I do get out there, the bad runs seem to outnumber the good runs and with that comes a major dose of self-doubt. The more I allow self-doubt to creep in the more I feel like a failure. Why is it that I can be so kind and supportive to others, but so negative with myself?   I have been close to the point lately of just giving into my fear and quitting, which is hard for this stubborn girl.

My fear is holding me back from commitment.  I have spent countless hours developing a training plan that gives me plenty of time to reach my goal next January, but I have not consistently put that plan into action.  Now time is slipping away from me, time that I HAVE TO HAVE.  Along with that training plan are a list of races that fit perfectly into the schedule to make the training a little more bearable, but I can’t seem to make myself submit that application.

How do I get past this fear?

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I also must have a plan that focuses on that strengthens my entire body and makes me healthy so that my ankle does not give me worry.

  • A friend has finally gotten me into the gym and I paid my money for a personal trainer to help me strengthen my core.  Talk about commitment…

I also must commit. No more sitting on the sidelines.

  • The Slacker Half registration is submitted.  I have just enough time to prepare for the half in June.  From all accounts it seems like the perfect half to get me back into running, one that is not constrained by a “sweeper” time.  I need this because I know it is more for me right now just to finish and get the distance in.

Finally, I must believe

“If you dream it, you can do it.”

The belief is the key. What the mind can conceive and believe it can achieve.  I know this is true, I have done it before, after all if I did not believe in myself I would have never started and never had finished 18 half marathons.  I need to start talking to myself as I do others.  Reassure myself that I am fine and that it is about keeping moving forward with my eye on the finish line.

This run my suck, but tomorrow is a new run…

Tuesdays on the Run: Shhh, I am in love with another man…

It’s Tuesday, so that means I am linking up with Patty, Erika & Marsha for Tuesday’s on the Run. This week’s topic is “Running Valentine”…

Don’t tell my husband, but I am in LOVE with another man…

For over 5 years,  we secretly meet up hidden by the darkness before dawn.  His voice whispering in my ear my favorite 4 letter word and then a few seconds later the three letter word that strikes fear to my fluffy body.  He and I go round and round, longer and farther than the time before. And as a gift I for my faithfulness, I am rewarded beautiful things to wear around my neck…

When I tell people that “run” half marathons, I almost feel like a fraud…

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Look at me I am certainly not the image of what many people envision a runner to look like and the way that I “run” my half marathons (or any distance) would have my middle school track coach kicking me off the team.

Thank goodness I am way beyond those middle school track days and Coach Carlson.  Although sadly though not beyond the harsh judgments (even if they are all in my head) of other people,  but I do “run” half marathons it is just a matter that my running looks different than many runners and non-runners think running looks likes.  I LOVE the fact this fluffy, middle aged woman can hold up the bling and say “Yep, I did 13.1 miles and finished the race!”  Thanks to my love affair with a man named Jeff Galloway.

While Jeff Galloway may not have been the first to run-walk, his method of interval running allows many people, myself included, to be “runners.” Basically for me a run is a short period of running followed by a longer period of walking repeated over and over until I finish the distance.  In a normal week, my training plan is 2 miles 2 x a week and 1 long run (determined by whatever my distance is that I am building to).

I love that Jeff constantly reminds me that “I am the captain of my own ship” and it is me that determines how far, how fast and how much I will walk or run.  Here are some other reasons that I love the Jeff and the Galloway method.

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  • I don’t have to do speed workouts, but I do keep track of my minute/mile pace for each run so I can compare how I am doing against where I need to be to not be swept from a race.
  • I don’t have to cross train, although occasionally I do in the pool and recently thought about getting a personal l trainer and work on some strength training.
  • If I am just not feeling my long run, then I can walk it…after all it is all about practicing the time on my feet and getting my body used to a distance, aka endurance.
  • The distance for my long runs seems more manageable because it is broken up into, “30 seconds till I can walk again.” I also find it easier to push past the wall.
  • I feel good after a run, not fatigued because I have had control over the fatigue the entire run.

If I can learn to love running, anyone can, I guarantee Jeff will make you fall in love too!  After all life should be about the things we love…

Check Out Run Walk Run with Jeff Galloway…

http://www.jeffgalloway.com/training/run-walk/

Tuesdays on the Run: Running Fuel Confessions

It’s Tuesday, so that means I am linking up with Patty, Erika & Marsha for Tuesday’s on the Run. This week’s topic is running fuel…

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Do Mickey Bars or Dole Whips count?  I am almost scared to admit it but I am not a big running fuel person.  NO LECTURES NEEDED, my body tells me all the time and I am working hard at listening.  

So let’s get down to what I know my body needs the night before a race.  Trust me that these are NOT good choices the night before a race…

In all honest, been there tried both and paid it right after my race the next day, thankfully not during the race (so sorry Chef de France bathroom).  I have since learned my lesson that water and a clean protein (grilled chicken or lean steak) accompanied by some fibrous veggies and a plain carb (usually rice) is the best bet for my body (although as you can tell I have a hard head).  

Just prior to the race as I stand around for 2 hours in my runDisney corral I like to carry along a packet of Justin’s peanut butter and a banana.  A race is about the only time I ever eat a banana and I think I do it then just because everyone else does it.  Occasionally, I will fix an instant oatmeal cup before heading out the door.

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During the race (and most training runs) it’s a couple of peppermints and a few sticks of gum.  I have tried the 3G’s (gummies, goos, gels) and find that they don’t do much for me…although the salted caramel cliff gel is AMAZING!

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Ultimately, they just end up making me more thirsty and the only time I hydrate is during water stations where I pick up a cup of water and a cup of Powerade.

Tip:   After way too many times of nearly soaking myself or choking to death, I have learned that if you squeeze the top rim of your cup and make it like a funnel you have a better chance of actually getting some liquid down your throat!  YOUR WELCOME!

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I have also tried the not so running type of fuel of skittles (thank you @tankgirl, you could have mentioned NOT to pop an entire handful in my mouth) and sour patch kids (which I quite like but they tend to get all sticky).  

On a long training run I am bad…I don’t fuel or hydrate properly the night before, prior to the long run or during the run. NO NAGGING…I know none of this is good for me or for my run and I am working to fix this issue.   It is just that I can’t stand to have anything in my hands, poor excuse since I normally am wearing a SparkleSkirt with those amazing pockets or my latest Kohls find…FILA running capris with even better pockets.  But really it comes down to my fear of carbs and sugar, which are both needed for a run but not so much my fluffy body.  

Now let’s talk about post fueling, that is MOST important, right?  Traditionally after a non- Disney race me and 5 Guys have a date.  

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And when I am at Disney, you can be certain the first things gone are those heavenly salty torialla chips and plastic cheese

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(which if you save for a treat to get you through till your next Disney race is about the nastiest stuff on earth, talk about runDisney magic).   

As I spend more time reading and researching how to train and finish a full marathon (without dying, that is the key), I know my fueling habits must change.  So I am looking forward to reading all linked up blogs to get ideas on how to deal with my challenging fueling choices…

And for the sake of all honestly, I will be scoping out all those great Disney food blogs for my post full marathon fueling.  Be honest you too runDisney so you can eat & drink Disney just like me.

 

Want to runDisney so you can eat Disney?  I can help you with both adventures. Contact me today for race bibs & runDisney packages (I can offer you presale bibs as well as insurance in case something happens and you can’t run). Then I will be your personal cheerleader and travel planner to make sure you have a magical runDisney runcation!