So my last post about unmotivated seemed to start my summer theme, but…..
It’s been a minute and I thought I would re-introduce myself and my new motivation.
My name is Christine and I think I am a runner?
But I am also a home baker busy with my new Cottage Food Baking business. Baking, researching, practicing, plotting.
I also work part time outside the home at a child care center. If you have ever worked with 3 year olds, you know that it is exhausting in a fun kids are too cute way.
I am also a home maker. Although 1 of my boys is a college graduate this past June and now in the work force, I still have one more college student at home and a High School student.
I also have Hypoparathyroidism which makes everything a balancing act.
I love to garden.
I am a busy, busy, bee….
I am also a blogger? At least think I am. I’ve written many a blog posts in my mind never to have actually made it to WordPress. I hope to change that. I hope to change a lot of things. So with that let’s catch up!
Although I haven’t been blogging or training, I have actually been moving (somewhat). I’ve been pretraining training. For what you ask.
I am running the NYC Virtual Marathon for Sandy Hook Promise. Those of you here a while know that I had made it to the in person marathon team for the 3rd time, but this year gave my spot up for a few reasons. I was at peace with that. Then Uvalde and I wanted back in. So I am now ”running” and raising money for Sandy Hook Promise as part of a virtual marathon team. Even though it will still be 26.2 miles, the pressure is off.
Now before entering to do the virtual marathon, I had already signed up to do a Sprint Triathlon. This is one that I have never done, but have wanted to do. Sprint Triathlons have a special place in my heart as my very first race was a Sprint Triathlon – The NJ Iron Girl.
This was the race that started my crazy journey. That I started blogging to share my progress. That motivated me to run and made me realize that I actually like running. That got me where I am today because I cross trained and liked it which is the main reason I liked the idea of jumping back into a tri. Although I do not enjoy the swim as much as others. The swim will be in the bay at LBI. It also requires training. I always say with a tri…. The bike, you can coast. The run, you can walk, but the swim….. you will drown. Not really because they always have safety measures, but you get it.
So I have been pre training. I’ve been doing some biking. Still running sporadically, but really no swimming except some laps at the summer pool. This will all change next week…….
Because my training plan will officially start and I will be off the couch and out the door!
Why is it so hard to get your shit together, but so easy for it all to fall apart?
I’ve been plugging along. Seems like what I do. Just enough to keep moving. Just enough when things fall apart to use the excuse that I’m not prepared. Just enough to still get out the door, but not enough to push the envelope.
Tuesday of this week, without training other than a run here and there, I ran a 5K in town. My plan was just to run it to see how I did and felt. I met a friend and her friend on the course. I ran the last 2 miles with them. I finished. I finished in a respectable time. I finished with a big sprint at the end. I finished pushing it, but knowing that I could have kept going (slower but still going) which is good because I’m running a 10K Saturday.
I think I need to go back to the fake it till you feel it mantra. I keep signing up to do things because I want to do the event, but training isn’t high on priority list. Seeing as I signed up for a Sprint Triathlon for September and don’t want to drown, I better get a plan together. Plus I decided to do another big fall event virtually which will require it’s own post….. until then, it’s really time to get going.
I think I’ve just been so unmotivated for multiple reasons. Dealing with pinched nerve in neck. Working… Baking….. unmotivated…. then even more unmotivated… finally extremely unmotivated.
Al I keep going back to is if without training I can run a 5K in 35:11 and not die, what would happen if I actually got my head out of the sand and trained?
Sometimes we think we need to do something, but the thought of it brings worry.
Sometimes we want to do something, but the thought of the task at hand brings us anxiety.
Sometimes we know that what we want to do is maybe not what we need right now, but we worry we will miss out if we don’t do it. FOMA is real.
Sometime we know that the job is important, it is a worthy cause and necessary but we must realize that there might be others who can take it over while we take care of ourself.
We make decisions. We change our mind. We change it again……and again…. and again…..
So here it is and to some of you it will come as a shock.
I filled my application out to run NYCM for for the 4th time for Sandy Hook Promise. As I filled it out I second, third and fifth guessed the wisdom. I guessed not because I do not believe in their mission of protecting children and bringing much needed change because I do. I guessed not because I have not seen the impact of their programs because they are real. I guessed not because they are not an amazing organization with amazing leaders who are making a difference and giving it all they have got because they all are.
I guessed because I wondered if right now it is what my body needs. I guessed because I don’t know weather I can mentally and physically push myself to train for a marathon. I guessed because I am not sure that it would be a smart thing to do right now for so many reasons. With all of these guesses, I still filled out my application to run for them because I believe in them so much. I was accepted to run and all I needed was to fill out the contract to be on the team.
I was in!! The thought did not bring me peace for all I mentioned above.
Then an email came that they had an abundance of runners waiting in the wings, so instead of sending in my application; I passed the baton to the next runner. I always said that Sandy Hook’s mission was not a sprint but a marathon. I just forgot that it was a relay marathon. So as I pass the baton to the next runner, I realize that when the time is right I can step back in my lane to get the baton again. Until then there are other ways to both support those now running with the baton and the mission itself of Sandy Hook Promise.
The biggest way I know it was time to pass this baton is that when talking with a friend who was shocked I wasn’t going to run this year, I realized that I was at peace with the decision. There was no second guessing. There was not third guessing. While at peace with it, it is very bittersweet as I will miss being part of the marathon team but you don’t need to run a marathon to make a difference. You just need to show up and get involved.
As seems to be my MO, I ran another race I was not trained for this past weekend. This time when I say that I wasn’t trained, I mean I really wasn’t trained! Training was lagging, but I was on track somewhat especially as I had just come off NYC Half. I had put in some miles with the longest being 8. I was feeling good, but then I was sidelined by the cold everyone seemed to get after remerging from out masks. This was a cold that would not quit and then turned into a lovely sinus infection. So for the 3 weeks before the Shape Half Marathon I did nothing. Like seriously N O T H I N G. Unless you count blowing nose constantly and sleeping something which I don’t think counts.
I had thought about backing out, but not seriously. I knew that I would finish but I would have to just take it as it came. Although if I had remembered how hilly 2 loops of Central Park were and how Harlem Hill sucks so bad, I might have given it more thought. I had no plan. I had no pace. I just went with the flow. I was lucky to even show up. As a side not right before I left my home, I threw up. It was a combo of taking my antibiotic with coffee followed by brushing teeth. It didn’t set well.
The flow was wobbly. I ran the first 10 with the same woman that I ran the first half of the NYC Marathon. Since I didn’t have a plan and we are similiarly paced, I went with hers. She was run walking with a 5 to 1 ratio. It wasn’t pretty but it worked. the last 3 miles we went our own way which meant that she ran/walked and I pretty much walked. Central Park is a hard run when not trained…. ok any course is hard not trained, but the hills of central Park are no joke. My quads were not laughing but I was…..
This is what its about…. Not the pace…. Not the medal….. not even the finish….. the friendships:)
The day was filled with lots of fun, laughs, and a lovely brunch. I am so glad that I showed up. Sometimes that is all you have to do is show up. To know that what ever will be will be and just enjoy the process and the outcome. It is easier said that done. Will also say that I was surprised at the outcome because I finished in under 3 hours which I was not expecting. 2:55.
Some people might think because I run marathons that I never suffer from issues from my Hypoparthyridism. They would be wrong. It just is part of the routine now.
Case in point
Yesterday, while cleaning kitchen. Not doing anything out of the ordinary. Unless you count really doing a deep clean. Hmmmm
I think the difference is that while running though, I really pay attention and adjust. During build up of the miles in my training for marathon, I pat attention to the signals. Monitoring when hands start to get tingly. Pay attention to how hard to push before adding more calcium. It is all so random to be honest and changes all the time. Things that always effect it though are temperatures when running, pace and how hard I’m pushing, time of day, time on feet, and really what the calcium Gods decide. At least that last one feels pretty accurate.
One thing that I realized during a training run is definitely extra calcium is required before mile 10. It is always better to keep the levels up than try to recover from when the hands start to tingle. During training if it was a longer run, I would make sure to take my morning dose of calcium and calcitriol before running. If it was a shorter run, I would take it as soon as I got home. If it was a LOOOONG training run, I might add extra calcium powder (Calez) to my water. If it was a hot day, I would do the same. Regardless though, I always kept a pack of the powder with me because some days I needed it and some days I didn’t, Really is a crap shoot.
On marathon day and the day before, I did some preparation. In eventing before the marathon, I took an extra dose of my Calcitriol because normally I aim to keep my blood calcium levels at just below or at the the low end of normal. So I didn’t want to go into the marathon with low calcium already. Then the morning of before I left at the super early hour of 6:00 AM, I took my morning dose which normally I don’t take until 10ish. Then I packed with me my normal meds but taking an extra dose with me as it was going to be a long and hard day. I wasn’t starting until 12:00, so I had to bob and weave before the bob and weaving actually began. So around 11:00 am or so, I took another dose of calcium and calcitriol which really would have been my normal time. Then I made sure to add Calez to one of my water bottles to have along the course. I saved another dose of my calcium, calcitriol and magnesium for when I finished. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.
I will say that I think for once I ran a smart race. It helped that I ran the first 16-17 miles with a friend. I think we kept each other in check. We ran paces that were sustainable. We ran smart. We also walked when needed but also encouraged each other to push ourselves to run. I ran a much smarter race when I was running with her. I would have loved to have run the whole thing with her, but we split up when she needed to stop for a bathroom pit stop. At that point, I really was afraid that if I stopped that it would be too hard to start up again. My legs were dead. My foot was hurting. Stopping was not an option for me unless I wanted to call it a day.
So I kept on going……
At first I did not run as smart as I did when I was with Rosa, but I caught on to my stupidity. So I tried to run smarter. I walked more than I probably would have than if I was with her, but the pain was real.
But so was the joy….
The bottom line though was I still got where I wanted to get which was the finish line.
Yes, I know you’ve seen this photo before, but I do so love it.
Everyone who runs a marathon has hardships that they push through to get to the finish line. It wouldn’t be a marathon without it. This is just part of mine. Before becoming Hypopara, I didn’t have to take into account medications and added calcium, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t different challenges. As they say…….
If marathons were easy everyone would do them. I’m just too stubborn not to do what I have to do to get to the finish.
Day 4 and besides the healing blister on my foot I feel normal.
I guess that is what successful training is all about.
It’s funny as a runner when you run a marathon, you know recovery is a real thing. You know you have pushed your body to and past the limit, yet some how it’s annoying when you don’t just spring out of bed the next day. When I ran my first marathon, the next day I literally was wearing heals and seriously felt normal. As the years pass…… As the training is not as stellar…… As my feet begin to have issues…… As my body changes………. those days are long gone! I would have cried if I had to put on heals the next day. I switched back between my OOFAS clogs and flip flops for 3 days.
Yesterday, was the first day that I really felt normal. Getting up and down at circle time (remember I work in preschool) with ease. Bouncing up and down stairs like nothing. I only have residual tightness in my hamstrings and honestly it might be because I need to do some rolling. Really not a bad recovery.
Funny thing is that when non runners see you even in midst of recovery they are amazed. Several times I have heard things like…..
If I ran a marathon, I wouldn’t move for a month.
The fact that you are still moving amazes me.
I don’t even like walking to my car, I can’t believe you ran 26 miles.
It used to be only 1% of people have run a marathon. I recently heard that it is up to 2%. Still a small amount. Something that everyone who has ever crossed a marathon finish can take pride in. There is pride in time but there is also pride in the finish.
So I have decided to deconstruct the marathon backwards starting with the finish line…….
In the dark…. 6 hours and 3 minutes 49 seconds after crossing the start line, i crossed the finish line. Pure joy, exhaustion and triumph rolled into one.
I am thankful to the spectators who were playing Eye of the Tiger from a boom box in Central Park. They literally got me up that hill! you think you are done when you turn into the park, but there is still more for the marathon to take and for you to give.
When running a marathon, the finish line seems so far away. The longer you run, the farther it feels or maybe that is just me. For New York though, you know you are ”getting closer,” when you turn down 5th Avenue. In the past, 5th Avenue is wall to wall people cheering you on. It’s heart pumping. It is exhilarating. It is amazing. Often you will see people with their medals and ponchos in the crowd. It gets you up the Avenue into the park.
I will say starting in the the last coral of the last wave, running 5th Avenue was slightly different. Yes, there were crowds on some sections, but it was not wall to wall people. There were not people lining the entire avenue. To be honest by the time that I hit the Avenue, they were already in process of rolling up the NYRR banners. It did not have that heart pumping, energy inducing motivation to run or walk a little faster. I was at the point in the marathon where I was trying to decide if it was more painful to walk or run. So I kept on walking….
Often when people talk, think, or even run a marathon; we focus of how long did it take. The elites finish in a shorter time than most people run their half marathons. They are amazing. Then you see the times of celebrities who finish the elusive 4 hour marathon. They train for it. They earn it as much as the non celebrities we know. They are also amazing. As our the people in our circle who fly like gazelles hitting paces for mile after mile crossing the finish line in times that make our jaws drop. They are amazing! Then there are people like me, who have to answer No to people who ask, ”Did you run the whole thing?”
WE ARE ALSO AMAZING!
There is something about having the grit and determination to get to the finish line while they are rolling up the carpets so to speak. When the crowds are sparse…… When the sun is setting…….. When it is dark in the park……. When you have to be your own cheerleader……. When you have to dig in deep to find your own grit and determination because you are the reason you are there in the first place and you will be the reason that you get to the finish line. There are no massive crowds to carry you to the finish line, but those that are there know how much that you need them. I was lucky to have a friend cheering on 5th Avenue. I almost missed her but she strained your voice to scream my name loud enough that I turned to see her………. It was perfect
As was knowing that I had 2 friends who were volunteering at water station around mile 19. It is no exaggeration that I was pushing to get to them before their shift ended at 5:00 PM. I made it in time. I found them and gave them sweaty hugs stealing energy from them to keep going. Once the goal to reach them was achieved then I could tell myself that the finish line was not so far away. I like to count down the miles which doesn’t work for everyone but it works for me!
Before the water stop, my goal was to find my Sandy Hook Promise Team at 87th and 1rst Avenue. I missed them the first year that I ran for them and am thankful these last 2 times that I have not missed them. They not only give you energy but they give you a reason to keep running….. to keep pushing…… to know that giving up is not an option. They are an amazing team and while they support me during the marathon, they will always have my support running or not running.
I have never been a spectator at any marathon let alone the NYCM and I really think that would be an amazing thing to do. I think spectators underestimate how much energy they give to those running the coarse. I plan to be a spectator in the future and I know that when I do it will be the back in the pack runner that I will be saving energy to give to because we may need it more than those that are flying to the finish.
And yes…… There is more, but for today this is enough especially as I need to get to work:)
There is ALWAYS a lot to unpack with a marathon. Runners LOVE to rehash our events and this one will be no different. So this will be the first of a few posts covering the day. Today we start with the numbers.
First lets talk about my training. I went in knowing that while I knew I could finish that it might be a struggle since my longest run in training was only 16 miles. Normally, I do not do a 20 mile training run as I find them defeating, but I usually do at least an 18 with a run either the day after for a running on tired legs. I also did not do that. With that being said, my training was at least consistent enough that I was confident baring any major issues that the day would be ok…… And it was.
Then there was the 4:00 AM wake up call with 6:00 departure only to have to sit for 12:00 PM start time. A friend commented that wouldn’t it be nice to know what it feels like to run a marathon where you didn’t have to sit around for hours. Just to wake up, get ready, and run. I’m sure those that finished before I even started know that feeling but it is one that I will never experience especially with NY.
Then there was the pace and finish. My average pace ended up being 13.44 with I am actually happy with. I think it helped that I ran the first 17 miles with my friend Rosa. We kept each other in check, but had to part ways when she needed to stop for porta potty stop. I was afraid at that point if I stopped that I wouldn’t start again. My quads were on fire and my foot was hurting from what I discovered later to be a massive blister. (I really have to learn to run without getting blisters. How do people do that!?!) Once we parted ways, I continued with a mixture of walk run and towards the end mostly walking. Walking with a purpose. I was at the point where I couldn’t decide if I was in more pain walking or running. If you have done a marathon you know what I’m talking about.
My official time was 6:03:50
I always said that I wasn’t going to win and I stuck to that. I literally started in the last corral with nothing behind us but a fence. But the party really is in the back!
Lastly, the most important number…….. This is my third year running for Sandy Hook Promise. Going in I was worried that due to Covid and the impact it had on people financially that fundraising would be harder. I also feel that due to Covid their mission of inclusion, empathy and programs to help kids are needed more than ever. I will also say that I worked hard with auction, back sales and other things that I not only made my requirement but surpassed it!!! As of today, my marathon fundraising has reached $3,916. I am hoping to reach $4,000 before it ends. https://fundraisers.hakuapp.com/christine-chaillet?referral_source=FBK&fbclid=IwAR34_JS4IcMeCoCChOysSA4x4GCIK0zTkLc1_BFQCgNGaroHnkyHf8EAyAY
More to come….. but need to roll again and maybe take a nap:)
I will be the first to admit that I am not perfect. I am far from it. I have many faults but I really don’t feel the need to list them. I also have many positive traits that I don’t feel the need to list. All that being said, we all know those that put forth the ”perfect life.” They have the perfect home. The perfect style. The perfect this the perfect that….. Blah…. Blah…. Blah….
Let’s be real, there is not such thing as perfect in the real world. Usually when you peel back the mask of perfection, you will see how imperfect it all is. The problem is that often no one bothers to look past the initial layer to see the reality of what striving for perfection cost. Perfection is an unattainable goal and often leads to frustration, giving up, or in some cases drastic measures (think of those celebs who went one cosmetic procedure to far).
In our workout routine or diet, the strive for perfection often leads to people walking away feeling like a failure. We think that we have to follow a strict diet and if we don’t follow to the letter T that we cant do it. Many times people who decide to get fit go gang busters…. Going to gym every day. Starting strong as they say. Then they get sore. They miss a workout. They can’t hit a pace in a run. They feel like they are too slow. That why bother because we just aren’t good enough. The strive for perfection often sets us up for failure.
I am to the point that I am realizing that striving towards “perfection,” towards unattainable goals, to comparing myself to not others but old versions fo me were setting me up for failure. My goal is no longer perfection, but only to be better and the best version of me. A realistic version. A version that I can live with. A version that is sustainable. A version that will never be perfect, never be more than it can be, and one that I can say I did my best.
I’ve been thinking along these lines with my nutrition. I have always said that my problem with diets is that if I get hit by a bus that I don’t want my last meal to be celery. Not that there is anything wrong with celery as I actually had it for snack last night, but you understand. I do not want to live my life feeling deprived. Striving for things that long term will not keep. So as I started thinking about my nutrition, I’ve realized that sometimes change while hard doesn’t always mean depriving myself. I want to develop a nutritional plan that I can live with, feel good about, that is healthy, and most of all sustainable. Also I know for a fact that I am not going to be giving up certain things and that is ok. Embracing the imperfection of moderation.
So far. So good.
The morning smoothies are still a thing and one that hubby and I look forward to. The thinking about what I am eating, when I am eating and why I am eating has been helpful. To be honest, the cravings for certain foods is lessoning. My boss gave me 2 caramel chocolate bars 2 weeks ago that are still uneaten. Not because I am depriving myself but because i just dont want them. That would be unheard of before. My morning coffee is now filled with an almond creamer instead of half and half or such. If you know me, you know I take my coffee seriously so this was a big step. But once I took that step, I realized that it was more in my mind than in the cup because my morning coffee still tastes like my morning coffee. This past week, I also made homemade cinnamon rolls for my family. They are delicious but I didn’t have one because I really didn’t want one. On the other hand, when I made Pumpkin donuts I did eat one. Just one and that was enough. No shame. No Guilt….. Balance.
I have also been taking this approach to my running. I have continued to walk the first few miles of my long run and the first of pretty much all. Then my goal is to keep the pace in the 12’s because that is where I realistically am. In being real with what I can do, how fast I can run, and what my body can do; I have actually been able to run better Striving for unattainable goals has been my downfall with my running. Working towards being the best I can be on each run has been making running both enjoyable and sustainable.
To be the best version you can be on any given day either in your nutrition, in your running or in your life will change day to day. The trick is to give yourself the grace you need to be that version. Accept the version that you are today and if it doesn’t live up to your expectations know that tomorrow is another day!
Remember as a kid, you did things just to do them. Remember that feeling of just doing nothing and being content with it. Remember when you were younger going out with your friends for no reason with no destination, but just to drive and listen to music. Remember the days where you didn’t feel like you needed a purpose, destination, or challenge?
Today my hubby and I took a drive to a Garden Center to pick up a tree to replace one that didn’t survive the harsh winter. As we were driving, I was looking at the well manicured lawns, the not so well manicured lawns, and the “natural lawns.” Personally I enjoy the more natural looking yards from the “well manicured” pristine lawns. The well manicured to me are just fighting for perfection that was never meant to be nor natural…… Plus they are a lot of work. Although I have a mix of a well manicured and natural looking gardens and it is definitely not less work
Anywho…… What do these things have in common.
They are all about control.
When we were younger, we just let things take their course. Whatever happened happened. Then as we grew up had responsibilities , we needed to start taking control. We had to take control of schedules, budgets, other people, on and on the list went. Everything needed to be managed. Everything needed to be planned. We needed goals. We needed challenges. Everything was about finding our purpose. Finding our bliss. Even that became something to plan. Sometimes we found it. Sometimes we didn’t, but in the search we realized that sometimes it’s ok not to have a plan.
Some of my fondest memories from when I was younger was just hanging out with my friends. Times when we weren’t doing anything. Just hanging out on the beach. Going for a drive/walk. It wasn’t about reaching a destination, but about just the moment.
Since I started running, I’ve always been goal oriented even when trying not to be. Goals to hit a certain pace, distance, event, miles. Even when I was regularly practicing yoga it became about challenging myself to practice for a certain number of days or attain a certain pose. It wasn’t about just being.
I am trying to learn how to just be. To allow my running to be about nothing more nothing less than just about the running. No challenges. No paces. No distances.
Since new CDC guidelines I have met two friends for two different runs/walks. One friend we just walked and talked. One friend does the Jeff Galloway run/walk program, so we did that. Both of these started with much needed hugs as I haven’t seen either of them for a long time. (Sidebar – it felt really great to hug them). Anyway, I enjoyed both of these get togethers tremendously.
I always say that I need a purpose/challenge to get me out the door running. I want my purpose for now simply to be about the running. The meeting up with friends again. Friends who if I can run their pace, I will run their pace. Friends who might need to slow down to run my pace. Running by myself, just because I want to go for a run not because I need to go for a run.
Doesn’t that sound wrong? Ha! We are so trained that we always need to be working on something, to be improving something, to be striving for something that somehow the thought of just saying that I am not actively working, training, or planning anything seems like I am doing something wrong when for me it seems like I am doing something right and that is enough.
I can be both a seasoned marathon runner and a runner just beginning. Who knew that being a runner was also a state of mind? Pretty much every runner will tell you that it is both physical and mental. Even as someone who couldn’t run a 5K right now, I still consider myself a runner. My car carries magnets proudly displaying 26.2, 50K, and Moms Run this town. To anyone who sees these, they might think that I run miles every day. There was a time that was true. I earned them and so they remain.
For now though, I am not running any marathons but I am still a marathon runner. No matter if I were to never complete another marathon, nothing can take away the finish lines that I have crossed. So yes, yes, I am a marathon runner who happens to not be training for a marathon.
I don’t want to say that I am starting over again. I think I need to start looking at my running as the ups and downs that we all have in life. There are times when we are up and there are times when we are down. It is the ying and yang of life. So as a runner, there are times when I run and there are times when I will not be running. The not running chapter is coming to an end.
I have been running with the C25K program now for going on 3 weeks. This is where I need to be just like I needed to give myself a break from running. Now my body and my mind have reset and am once again looking forward to running again. If you don’t look forward to doing something, you shouldn’t do it. Now I don’t mean work or all the responsible things that we as adults must do, but running had been my release. When it started to be another chore it was time for a reset.
I enjoyed spending my spring and summer walking. I enjoyed not feeling like I should be doing something else. I had no desire to do more.
I do now. How much more is up for debate and will change over time.
So with that, I am lacing up again. There are no races on the horizon to train for and who knows what 2021 will bring race wise either but that isn’t what I am even thinking of right now. What I do know is that it is not about feeling like I need to run, but a feeling of I want to run. Rebuilding is allowing me to do exactly that…. Rebuild. I must be serious about it as I bought new sneakers and new Oofas too.
So with that, I will continue on this running journey that I have been all these years. You know it is time when you actually look forward to the thought of running. Not for racing. Not for pace. Not for distance. Just to run again.
Life is about listening to your inner voice. To respecting what you need and when you need it. And as will all things, what we need will change. What we want will also change. That doesn’t make us a failure. that makes us human.