Two. More. Weeks.

I’m now (less than) two weeks out from my FIRST trail race.  It’s also my longest race ever.  To celebrate, I took a week off from my trail training to participate in my FAVORITE race of the year, the Panther Run.  Three distances to choose from, naturally, I went with the 15K.

It was an EPIC race.  Cool temps meant PR weather!  I fell into a comfortable pace early, running alongside a woman from my running group.  We didn’t speak at all.  I think we were each racing the other the entire time.  Trail running has encouraged me to power down the hills, even on the road now.  So once we started hitting hills, I pulled away, but was never too far ahead. Eventually we ended up right back together and raced it out for the last mile.  At the end, we exchanged a high five.  I hit a PR by 14 minutes.  Maybe it’s not as big of a deal, considering my only previous 15K was over a year and a half ago, but I’m still celebrating besting my time.

As for trail racing…I now have three trail races on my schedule between now and Thanksgiving.  One 15K, one 25K and a half marathon.  I’m super excited.  Although the elevation chart for the 25K is just a little bit intimidating.  I’ll leave you with this:

1932347_10101397839994584_2346786897210892971_n

Advertisements

Falling behind

Life. It happens. Life doesn’t care if you have a triathlon in two weeks or are just starting a 13 week training plan for your first 25K trail race. It carries on however it pleases and you have to figure out how to roll with it.

It also doesn’t care if you are supposed to be starting a new job in two days either. But this is a running and fitness blog so we’ll stick with the other stuff 🙂

When life calls, you answer. You don’t ignore what’s going on because you have something else going. When someone needs you, you go. This isn’t me complaining that I had to pick up at a moments notice and go home to be there for my family. I would do it again in an instant. It’s about how you pick up when you get back.

You can sit there and be miserable that you missed that time. That triathlon PR would’ve been great. That 12 mile trail run that turned into a 9.5 mile trail run could’ve been way better if I didn’t miss the first three weeks of the training group. But I didn’t PR and I didn’t train those weeks. It is what it is. You pick up and continue. Make the best of where you are and know that you’re going to get there. It’s just going to be a little longer than you first thought.

It’s totally ok.

In fact, it’s better than ok. It means that you are confident enough in yourself to know that you can step away for a moment, tend to what you need to, come back and be fine.

Never get so caught up in your own life that you aren’t able to answer the call when someone needs you. Running teaches us to be confident and strong. Be confident enough to step away and lend that strength to those around you when they need it the most.

Balancing Act

No secret here, when I start training for a race, I go all out.  I run all the time.  Every day or just about every day.  Even though I know it’s important to keep variety in my training and my life, I sacrifice so much else to be able to get my miles in.  More miles than I even NEED.  This ends one of two ways after the race.  I keep the excitement for a little while after and continue running hard until I hit a wall and lose all motivation or I wind up injured.

 

This time around, I’m trying to do differently.  I’ve been working a lot on my strength training.  It’s important to me and I love to lift heavy weights.  It makes me feel strong.  I don’t want to lose what I’ve worked hard to gain.  I’ve also started attending hot yoga, which makes me feel grounded and in touch with my body. These are two things that I love.  But I’ve already noticed how quickly I will go to sacrificing them if running comes up.  

 

Yesterday was the first day I took a long hard listen to my body and actually put running down for a minute.  I went and lifted instead.  And it felt good.  No, it felt great.  Before, I would’ve tried to push that training run even though I knew my legs felt dead tired.  Now?  I’m more committed than ever to listening to what my body needs.  

 

I don’t have to run 6 days a week, 4+ miles each day plus a long run in order to be well trained.  Seeing how well my 11 miler last week went proved to me that I don’t.  I need the variety.  My body needs the variety.  Some people do it differently and that’s ok.  We all need to remember that the only voice we need to listen to is our own.  Your body will tell you what you need.  

To be a coach

I’m currently in the middle of interning at a fitness center. While it can get boring sitting at the desk, I have found one thing to absolutely love.

Helping coach a 5K training group.

Our members are of all ages, sizes and abilities. We meet twice a week to do a structured workout and give them a homework assignment for the week. They set goals, we talk about how they’re feeling and we’ve become a little running family.

I LOVE IT.

I got my first taste of run training with a group of kids at work, training for a kids run. It’s definitely different training children versus adults but rewarding and fabulous just the same. I love seeing them all grow and enjoy what I enjoy so much.

I’ve solidified in my head that I WILL be USATF certified as a run coach after graduation. I feel like I’m giving back to the community that has helped shape me.

Senior Year

Monday begins fall semester for me. It also will be the first day of my senior year. The beginning of the end of my time at MO State. I have loved almost every second of it.

20130814-104124.jpg

To say there weren’t difficult times would be a lie. To say I loved every minute would be a lie. My first day of class it was 12 degrees and all I was wearing was a sweatshirt. I’m from California. The beach part. You think I owned a jacket? Yeah right. But coming here was the best decision ever. I’ve made wonderful friends, become more dedicated than ever to my fitness and health. I love my professors in the department of kinesiology. I don’t think I would’ve been this successful or happy at Arizona State (though I do sometimes wonder what would have been).

20130814-104414.jpg

However, it’s scary to think I’m gonna be joining the “real world” sooner than later. I will be interning in the fall, which I hope gives me great insight and reinforces that what I’m doing is right. There isn’t much precedent for programs dedicated to childhood obesity prevention, so my dream is to be a pioneer in the field. We talk and talk about it in the news, how it is a growing epidemic, but what are people doing? What CAN you do?

That’s what I want my life’s work to be. My current job has shown me how much I enjoy working with children and my passion is fitness. How better to merge them than to dedicate myself to getting and keeping kids healthy?

Urban Orienteering Race

It's dark and you're running around downtown in spandex. Explain that to your grandparents.

GH Sports

an empowered fitness community

Life Begins When You Let It

A (sometimes) sattirical look at life, running, & the human experience. (i.e. defying age & "gray"vity).

fat2plant

The power of adding plants to your life!

My Journey to Enlightenment

My attempt to lose weight and become an elite long-distance runner.

Chocolate Covered Race Medals

Where I race to the chocolate bar

Barbells and Bacon

All about staying fit as an intern and a student

RunnerRich

Adventures in running...faster

Questionably Texan

The Adventures of a Canadian Ultramarathoning Bike-Commuting Vegan Living in Texas

Pavement Runner

Run Strong. Finish Stronger.

Hockey Mayor

NHL and LA Kings hockey news, inside information and interviews

Mike Scioscia's tragic illness

Los Angeles Dodgers blog with humor, sarcasm, and intelligence.

Frozen Royalty

Coverage of National Hockey League's (NHL) Los Angeles Kings (LA Kings) & American Hockey League's (AHL) Ontario Reign by credentialed journalist Gann Matsuda