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!
So since this is supposed to be a running blog, I thought I would do something novel and actually talk about my running…. I know, shocking!!!
As you know my training for NYC Marathon has been all over the place. I started off great following my training plan right up until I didn’t. And while my training hasn’t been stellar with following the plan. I feel (especially after yesterday) that I have been doing ok.
You know the expression….. You do you
Well I have been doing me and it has been working. With all my issues both mentally and physically, I just started loosely following the plan and doing what I felt would work for me. Before all my issues, I’ve followed training plans to the letter T (what does that even mean?) with great results. The problem with cookie cutter plans is that when you are not the ”ideal” runner, they might not work for you. Even though I took that into consideration in the beginning, I took it to the next level recently. After yesterday, I would say it has worked for me.
What have I been doing?
Well not as much running as my plan has called for. On days where I had foundation runs, I might have done HITT, biking, combo of biking/running, or even yoga. Since my goal has never been about time, I really stopped worrying about training runs where I needed to hit certain paces/training zones. I would do the run my way. Once I got back on ”schedule” with my plan, my biggest thing was to make sure that I was getting in the miles for long runs which is really where I was lacking. Even then I needed to make sure not to jump my miles too quickly as I was behind. So I adjusted.
Having run multiple marathons, I also know what works for me in training and what doesn’t. I know runners who feel the need to run multiple 20 mile training runs for their marathons. I have done them and I know that for what ever reason they don’t work for me. I find them defeating. I find them hard in a way that is not good for me mentally going into an event. They just don’t work for me. I would much rather do 16 to 18 miles and then the next day do a few miles on tired legs. This works for me.
Now all that being said, yesterday I went out for my longest run this cycle and I started at noon which is about the time that I will be starting NYC. I wanted to see how my body would be at that time of day as normally I run right after I take my morning meds.
It went well. To be honest, it went MUCH better than I expected. I continued with the walking the first 3 miles as I ALWAYS start off too fast. Plus since being Hypopara it does seem to take my body a bit to warm up. Then my goal was to keep the pace in the mid 12’s. To keep it at a level that I felt that I could run more than walking. There was no walk/run time. There was just doing what I could. I found that if I paid attention to pace, ran the “slower” pace, and didn’t try to run something I can’t sustain that I could run. I could run without the need to walk. Now don’t get me wrong…. There was walking, but there was much more running.
In order to conserve my battery, I did the first 6 miles with no music. Just me and my thoughts. I am not a runner who minds being alone and it was nice. Maybe a little boring, but I reminded myself that NYC will not be boring. I normally do not listen to music on race day as I LOVE to listen to the crowds, the runners feet hitting pavement, and just taking it all in. Out alone in my town though it does get boring.
Holding back is what I realize that I need to do if I want to have a good day. Yes, I can run faster BUT I can not sustain those paces AND they are not good for my body or feet. As you can see, I kept a fairly steady pace. At the end though, I wanted to push it to see what I still had in the tank. You know the Finish Strong mentality. I pushed it to the point that my arms literally went numb (you know the feeling like you laid on them). It was a good training run both mentally and physically.
What I learned…… Starting later, I do need to adjust my calcium intake. At mile 10, I added Calez to my water for added calcium but maybe I should start earlier. I also need to add more as miles add up. Maybe even taking a calcitrol at some point during run. This is why my arms/hands went numb at the end. As soon as I finished my run yesterday, I came inside and popped 500 mg calcium and a .25 calcitriol as I felt a crash coming. This also may have been due to the faster pace at the end. Either way, I need to pay attention and adjust accordingly. One thing with calcium levels is that they fluctuate and you have to pay attention to the signs to adjust with them.
Another thing that I made a mistake on yesterday, but to me I think it was a beneficial mistake……. I forgot my bag of fuel. This time around, I have been trying not to use gels but more natural (ok still processed) food. Since I started at 12, I didn’t eat lunch. So I ate a protein bar before starting out. I had a bag of almonds and some bars with me. I left the bag on counter, so I only had one Nutrigrain bar for the entire run. I ate half at mile 6 and then finished off around mile 12. While not ideal, I view this as a win because just think of how much better my body will feel when properly fueled on course. Learning to run/push when the tank is literally empty is not a bad thing.
When I came home, I stretched. I took added meds. I had a chocolate cake batter smoothie (Sadly no actual cake batter, but healthy proteins). Then I soaked in some epsom salt. Followed by the use of my foot massager. Overall recovery was good. Although I know that I did not replenish both water and nutrients enough. We ordered Thia food and I really couldn’t even eat much as I wasn’t hungry. Weird…. but I will do better today.
Today as I sit here typing, I feel good. I feel like I just ran 16 miles yesterday. My feet are sore, but normal sore. My legs are tired, but normal tired. I will do some restorative yoga and be kind to my body. I will also make sure today’s smoothie has some properties that will benefit recovery.
Life is filled with one new beginning after another. The road to life has many turns, backtracking, ups & downs and hopefully always moving forwards. There are many stops along the way, but the trick is not to idle too long or you may get stuck in one place.
Each journey along the road is a start of something new filled challenges, hopes, dreams and sometimes set backs. When we come to the beginning of a new road, we can either face the challenge, avoid it, change direction or drive into it. Sometimes starting a new journey is familiar. Some times it can be scary. Often a journey begins with hope.
I am about to embark on a few new journeys. Two familiar, yet not the same. One totally new and even with planning, research, and knowledge still a little frightening, exciting, and unknown.
The first journey is the beginning of my NYC Marathon training for Sandy Hook Promise. This is a journey that I faced before, yet it will still be a different road with new challenges, thrills, and hopes. This journey is scary not just for the training of the marathon but the fundraising aspect of it.
For the marathon running, I have been there done this as the saying goes. That being said, I have not done the 2019 marathon whose weather, training, and everything in between still has not been written. I am embarking on a 28 week training plan that has already started. The plan I have chosen is a basic marathon training plan with a slow build up, but will get me to the finish line. For now, I am not setting any training goals other than to finish better than last years 6 plus hour marathon. I also, for now, am not in a place to think about more than just a basic marathon training plan nor do I want to do more than be prepared.
For the marathon fundraising, I have been there done that once before; but again that was last year. This year my goal once again is $3,000 which is a scary goal that I am committed to hitting. For those who have never run as a charity runner, when you make this commitment it is not I will try. It is do and if you don’t hit your mark, you have signed a contract that you will personally make the payment. This is why you must be committed to the cause you are fundraising to which I am. I have been a believer in Sandy Hook Promise since they first organized and I signed up with them. That being said, it is a scary prospect as a mother of 3 children, one finishing his first year of college, one who is currently looking at colleges, to make a commitment like this. So far I’ve raised $50…. Gulp…… That being said, I have just started and this fundraiser is a marathon in itself.
Lastly I will also be starting a new adventure in my treatment of Hypoparathyroidism. The medication, Natpara, awaits in proper temperature in my refrigerator for the Natpara Nurse to come Monday to teach me how to prepare the mediation and give myself the daily injections. This is an exciting road that I’m hoping does not have too many bumps as I work out proper dosage and also adjust calcium supplements and Calcitrol dosage. I’m not expecting this to go without a hitch but hoping that it is easy transition. Once I start this treatment and get levels/dosage where they should be with any luck much of the issues that come from not producing the PTH hormone will be gone and my body can go back to factory settings.
New beginnings are a part of life and I’m happy to be taking these paths right now.
I’ve started training for NYC Marathon. I had been thinking that I was pretraining, but then I actually looked and yup, I’m training. I am following the Jeff Galloway “To Finish” Program and it’s actually a 26 week program. In looking at the calendar if I do my math correctly, I believe that puts me at week 3 of training. Oops, time to play catch up:)
Training for a marathon is a long process, yet at the same time it goes quickly.
I’m going to be very upfront in how things are going and I’m sure it won’t all be rainbows and sunshine. That being said, I am so lucky to be given this opportunity and remind myself that I am not doing this for me, but for Sandy Hook Promise.
Anyhoo…. Even with the “To Finish” program, I know that I will be giving it all I’ve got.
I went out for a run. I was just shy of 5 miles at 4.7, but it happens. I used the ratio of 3 minutes run to 45 seconds walk. It seemed like a good ratio, but I’m still feeling it out. I will say that I liked it. I tried to keep my run part around 11 and walk not at a Sunday stroll nor a power walk, but somewhere in between. It seemed to be a good balance as my overall pace was 11:17.
As I was running though, I was trying to connect my body to where my mind is which is harder than you think. In my mind, I still am so much faster. My body disagrees. Besides that I also have to reconcile that with the run/walk method there will be times that I’m out for my run where I’m going to be walking and people will see. That’s a mental thing, but one that I will deal with too.
Here is the thing….. I can only do what I can do. Yes, running is very much a mental sport, but in the end you can only do what your body will allow. I’ve also got to use this training time to know when to add more calcium and magnesium. When I was training for Chicago, I had a doctor who kept my calcium levels in the mid normal range which may have made things better for running, but overall was not good for my health as it left too much calcium in urine (not good for kidneys). So I’ve learned more this last year and I’ve also got my specialist that is keeping my calcium at just below normal. That is good overall, but I do need to adjust more now on running days. It will also be a training exercise to know how much is enough and how much is too much.
Yesterday was not enough. It didn’t help that the night before I fell asleep and forgot to take my calcium and magnesium. I also should have added more calez during run and realized that a Epsom salt bath afterwards might not have been as indulgent as I thought it would have been.
This is what happens when your don’t hit the right balance. Your muscles dance which isn’t as fun as it sounds….
‘m just plugging along in my training. To be honest, I’m kind of doing a mish mash of things right now. For the most part, I’m following a mileage plan with Training Peaks, but that’s about it. I’m not doing any speed work. I’m not doing any cut-downs. I’m not doing anything remotely pace related. And even though I’m doing the walk/run method and bought the Jeff Galloway book, I’m not really following that either. I’m kind of doing a little of this and a little of that.
Is this the best way to train for a marathon?
Am I going to change the way I’m training?
Why, you ask?
Because my goal is to just finish.
Yes, I admit, deep down I think to myself that I will get all my shit together and I’ll magically run a 4:30 or better. Then I wake up and know that’s not happening.
Then there is a part of me that thinks that Chicago might just be my last marathon. Yes, I know you’ve heard it before but I really mean it this time. Really. Seriously. But I’m also not saying it won’t. I just don’t know. I will see how my body reacts.
What I do know is that I’m plugging away. That I need keep moving just based on the way my pants are fitting.
I’m also excited by the fact that I have an appointment in September with an endocrinologist based out of Columbia Hospital in NY. She is a doctor who is actually listed as a contributor to the Hypopara Association. I’ve found lectures that she has given to other doctors teaching about Hypoparthyroidism. When you have a disorder that only effects 60 to 70 thousand people in the United States, it is kind of hard to find someone local who knows the ins and outs of it. I’m lucky enough to only live an hour or so outside the city, so I will do the commute for someone who gets it. Plus I’ve had people tell me in a Hypopara group that on top of being a knowledgeable doctor who has studied this disease, she is also really nice.
So, yeah, I’m excited for this visit. Who knows maybe she will say the other doctors are wrong and I don’t have it anymore. (yeah, I know another far fetched thought). Anyway, I do wish that I could have made the appointment earlier as I would have loved to asked her about how to handle things such as supplements, medicine levels, and calcium intake during training. She seems to be worth the wait.
Unfortunately though it does seem that until then even that even though I do have a doctor, that I don’t have a doctor that gets it. I, personally, don’t like the doses of Calcitriol he currently has me on but I’ll keep taking it as I’ve been stable. Plus I’ve asked some pointed questions about tests recommended for people with hypopara to monitor kidney functions as problems can arise if doses and levels are not kept in check. The response was basically that calcium levels are good so no worries. I think that is much easier for him to say than me, but I’m just guessing. I’m lucky to have found some great online information and groups that help sort things out.
Case in point….
I’ve been taking Magnesium supplements as part of my protocol. I do think these supplements have been helpful as low magnesium levels effect calcium levels. It’s amazing the things you learn about when you feel you have to even if it was never anything you ever had a desire to learn.
Fun Fact… All supplements are not created equally. Label reading is important for everyone but especially when taking supplements in high doses. Did you know many supplements contain food coloring, additives, and such? I didn’t until I started looking at the labels due to side effects. Plus there are different types of supplements. Calcium comes in many forms I have learned. So does Magnesium. I’ve been taking 800 mg of a High Potency Magnesium in a softgel form which has helped with the levels, but has caused some gastro issues to be delicate. The side effects actually making it inadvisable to go for early training runs. I’ve recently (like 2 days ago) switched to a Magnesium Glycinate which is a different form of magnesium that is all natural and per the label promises a no laxative effect.
In looking the labels though it is clear which you would want to take for the long term:
High Potency Magnesium – magnesium, medium chain triglycerides, gelatin, glycerin, water, soy lecithin, colors, yellow beeswax
Magnesium Glycinate – magnesium and vegetable capsule (plant cellulose)
Seems pretty clear which one would be best to take.
What I am learning is that even when you think you are taking something that is good for you, you have to be careful. I’m hoping this new magnesium will be better on my system while still helping keep my levels in check.
We all know that I’ve never claimed to be an expert at running. I readily admit that I have so much to learn, but that isn’t to say that I don’t have some knowledge as I’ve been at it a few years now. A running friend recently asked me about my running. She’s gearing up for marathon training as many of my running friends are and she wanted to know about my paces. She specifically wanted to know about the “running slower” in training. As most of you know, my coach and now me, swear by this approach. My coach can give you all the schooled reasons why it makes more sense to train slower (Chronic Runner), I can just give you my take on it.
Before I wisely started working with my coach, I would estimate that almost ALL of my runs were at the same pace. It didn’t matter if it was a long run, a short run, or anywhere in between. You could count on an almost steady 10:20 pace. I thought I was doing good, but I was wrong. It wasn’t good for my body and it wasn’t good for my training.
I know that concept of slowing down to speed up sounds entirely crazy. I know it doesn’t make any sense. It goes against the grain. You think to yourself if I’m going to get faster, I need to run faster and I need to run faster a lot. Well, yes, yes you do need to run faster. Here is the thing though. You don’t need to run faster ALL the time and honestly most of the time you should be running slower. Seriously. No joke. No lie.
The first thing that my coach had me do when I started with her was to slooooooow down. Most of my daily runs except the ones designed for speed were slowed down to 11 minute pace or slower. I didn’t get it. I thought this doesn’t make sense, but I listened. I followed her advice. These slower days balanced out with days where I pushed it and ran hard. There was a balance that I didn’t have before. It was the key that I was missing (that and most of the key chain). I didn’t always understand, but I understood enough to know that she was right.
Here is the thing too. Before I slowed down, I battled plantar fasciitis. I battled it a lot. Taping my foot. Running in pain. I just thought, “this is part of being a runner.” I was wrong. Now, I am not saying that I am always pain free. I am not saying that new shoes and inserts have not also helped. What I am saying is that running slower when I didn’t need to be running fast helped. Not only with injuries, but also allowing my body to have the juice it needed on days I needed to run fast and then allow it recover from those hard days too.
Here is the bottom line from all this slowing down. I am an average runner. I do not have what is considered the “runners body.” I am short with short (but powerful) legs. I am a few pounds overweight. You know what all of that means? NOTHING. Really. Not only have I been able to run longer distances without injury since slowing down, but I have also run faster than I ever thought I could. In my 5K last week that I PR’d in 26:26. I ran the fasted mile that I have ever run. EVER. I ran a mile in 8:12. This was unimaginable to me. This still boggles my mind. Yes, I realize it’s only a mile but my 3rd mile of the 5K was 8:19. I may never get any faster that this, but I know that I would never have made it here if I hadn’t slowed down.
I’ve been doing something the last few days that I hate doing. I’ve been getting up early to run. Now, I’m not talking crazy early, but I’ve been getting out the door by 7:00. I like to say that I only wake up early to run only if I’m getting a shiny medal. For the most part that is true and it’s not like I’m doing track workouts at 5:30 in the morning like some Mama’s I know. Unfortunately, my training called for runs that really need the light of day. If I want to be ready for the shiny awesome medal in October than that means a few “early” workouts at least until the kids get back in school.
So what have I been doing?
Wednesday – 9 miles with average pace of 11:15 in 1:41:23.
More night time running which is good and bad. I would like to say that it was cooler, but it really was still hot and humid. My pace was supposed 10:50, but it was hard to maintain that pace in the dark even with all my lights.
Thurs: Aerobic: 4 miles Average pace 11:46. Easy to keep +++ pace with heavy legs.
I like “easy” miles. Although nothing is easy when in comes to putting in so many miles. Although my feet have been feeling good, my quads have been feeling tight. Might be because I’ve been doing so many miles and probably not stretching or rolling as much as I should. Truth be told is that it is hard enough to find all the hours it takes to get my run in, let alone add the extra time for that.
Fri: Aerobic: 10 miles – Aaverage Pace 11:01 in 1:49:27
This was the the transition to an “early” run. Truth be told it really wasn’t early as I didn’t get out the door till 8:00 AM. I should have left a little earlier, but this was still better than leaving at 11:00 AM. My quads were still tight making legs feel heavy and me feel a little sluggish. Luckily this was a run where it was more about miles than pace and my goal was to stay in the 10:50 to 11:00 range. Some miles better than others, but overall a decent run and the overall average pace was on target.
This run I went out with the intention of finding house #13 for my MRTT scavenger hunt. Hey, you’ve got to do something to keep your mind occupied while training. I had a route lined up as my friend lives at #10 on a street. Got to her street and the numbers on her street went from 11 to 15. Grrr. So I started making my way home, going down other streets to find the ever ellusive number 13. Shockingly many streets were just like the first. I did finally find one:) More truth, I would never live in a house number 13. Yeah, I’m a little superstitious. Maybe I shouldn’t be because literally right after house number 13, I almost ran into some wild life which I also needed for my hunt.
What is life if it’s not fun?
Off from running. Did go to a Yoga class with at Athleta with my MRTT group. This class felt so good and it made me realize that I need to get back to yoga. I also realized that I haven’t been all summer. Maybe this has something to do with why my quads are so tight.
Mon: MP Aerobic: 15 miles Average pace 10:34 in 2:38:40 but overall time was 3:38:38
I needed to get this run done early because I didn’t want to do it at night since I was going to be running 8 miles of it at marathon pace. I also didn’t want to be running in the heat of the day. Luckily, Genine, wanted to run a few miles but she needed to run early. So we made plans to meet at 7:00 AM which was perfect for me. Without knowing that she would be meeting me, I’m fairly certain I would have wasted my morning and not gotten out till at least 8:00. That being said, I think the first thing I said to her when I saw her was “this sucks.” I was kind of dreading this run since it was such a long one, but it all worked out. My legs felt better and I’m not sure if it was extra rolling and stretching or yoga.
Genine stayed with me for the first couple of miles which was good. I still wasn’t feeling it, but I was already a few miles into it, so what choice did I have but to keep going. I hit most of the targets and did use fuel which I haven’t been using on my long runs but since I was running at marathon pace, I got to use fuel. I didn’t get a chance to eat before I left since I burnt my toast, I used a gel with caffeine instead. Then around mile 3, I ate 2 of jelly belly sport jelly beans (love them). Then I had another gel with caffeine at mile 8 and Gatorade at mile 10. Not sure if this was too much fuel for this run, but I figured since I didn’t have breakfast and hadn’t eaten anything since 7:30 the night before I needed it. Plus even though it was early, it was already hot and humid. Plus, I am such a hot mess when I run I think I needed it. Might need to think about Gatorade more as it really hit the spot!
Now the reason that my overall time was so much more than my actual running time is that I plan my runs so that I can refill my water bottle and I also have to wait at intersections and such. Still shocked at the difference as I didn’t realize I slowed down that much. Anyway, first water stop was at the park for bathroom break, refill bottles, a few pictures for my scavenger hunt. Then my second stop was at the 7-elleven where I normally stop to buy a $1 bottle of water. For this run though, I decided to get Gatorade for some reason. Nothing ever tasted so good. I might have to think about using this again although I don’t know that it would always taste as good as it did on this run.
I timed it that this run would end at Dunkin Donuts where I could get a nice recovery iced latte. Some people do look at you a little funny when your in line, but what’s a girl to do. I want (need) my iced latte and I can’t help it that I look like I ran through the sprinklers. I then cooled down with a short walk home. I’m also wondering if this is why my overall time is so much different too. I don’t think I reset (ended) my run until I got home, So who knows.
I don’t have my schedule for this week yet as I get my schedule on Tuesday’s. I’m curious as to what this week will bring. Last week since I had the long run with 8 miles at marathon pace, I didn’t have a tempo run which was nice. I’m thinking that I won’t be so lucky 2 weeks in a row!
Since I just came back from vacation, I’m going to go with
5 ways to stay on track while on Vacation
Scout an Area to run ahead of time
Since I was going camping by a lake in an area that I never have run in it was important for me to figure out a place that I could actually run. Yes, I could have run around the campground, but I really didn’t want to do that especially because most of my runs were 5 to 8 miles. The internet makes it so easy to find local parks or tails and this is how I found the beautiful trail that I ran on!
Bring your Running Gear
Yes, this seems like a no brainer but if your like me you have tons of running gear. Think ahead of time what you will need and pack a small running bag with the things that you will need. Gels, water bottles, headbands, Garmin, ect. The things that you know you can’t run without so don’t forget your favorite running shoes!
Build Time in Your Schedule to Run
Now we really weren’t on any schedule but I still needed to build it into my day. I had balance out my husbands fishing, time with family, and such with my running . This made it fairly easy for me to just say, “I’m going for a run.” If your not doing such a relaxed vacation you might need to juggle a little more.
Adjust your Schedule and expectations
While on vacation, I knew ahead of time that my training would need to take a step back. Although I also knew that I didn’t totally put on the breaks as the Marine Corps Marathon is just months away, I also knew that I would not be able to follow my full training schedule. You know what, that’s ok too! Running is not my job. Running should not ad stress to my life, but take it away. That being said, my coach adjusted my schedule to make this a set back week for my training therefore it wasn’t so bad. I did miss my long run (17 miles) that week. Did I wish that I could have done it? Yes. In the whole scheme of things is it going to effect my ability to run the MCM? No.
Just Do it!
Nike is so right. Just get out there and get it done. It may not always be easy and you may have to give up sleep or something else, but it is so worth it. I know that not only did i feel better about getting my runs in, but it also took away the guilt of sitting by the fire eating Smores!
So as you know, I’ve been following a plan. A very specific plan with specific paces, miles, fuel requirements and such. I’ve never followed a plan so strictly before. I think the closest that I’ve come when I was training for the Runner’s World Hat Trick but even then I was a little more flexible with my plan. Now, I do love having a specific plan that I know is designed to help me maximize my running potential and will have me prepared for the Marine Corps Marathon. That being said, you do have to give up something when following your plan so strictly.
I miss running with my friends:):)
Now don’t feel sorry for me and I will also admit to being a little hormonal as I write this, but I do miss the ability to just join in any run that my group is having. Now part of this is me as if I have a plan to follow, I need to follow it. Plus I am paying to have this plan made for me, so I really need to follow it. And part of it, I don’t want to have to tell my running coach that I ignored her very well thought out weekly plan for me:)
I know that some of this is also a learning curve as I adjust to following a plan so strictly and I will learn to fit the group runs into my schedule as I was doing in the beginning. Now that the kids are off from school it really does make it a little harder on everyone’s schedule too. Plus I can now officially say I am in Marathon Training. I will adjust. Right now, I’m still trying to work my summer runs into my summer schedule. Trying to decided when to run and knowing that on some days I’m going to have to run EARLY. I don’t mind leaving them for short runs, but I don’t like the thought of being across town if they need me. I’m still trying to work my runs into my schedule with the boys, let alone a group schedule.
Plus I’ve been working very hard on my pacing and I need to make sure that I keep that up. I feel like I am finally getting a handle on things. I don’t want to loose that. I am learning how important it is to be able to regulate my pace and I need to keep working on that to improve it as I’m learning how important that will be in the actual marathon. So if my 6 mile run has a specific pace for it, I need to run that pace. Then my recovery runs might be too slow for the group as I am running them at 11+ paces and I need to keep them slow. Many of my running friends are also beginning their Marathon Training too. We all have our own training plans to follow as ultimately we each have to walk to the starting line of our events.
Maybe part of this mumble jumble is the fear of beginning marathon training. To know that it’s real. To know that it’s only a short 113 days away. I don’t know. What I think is that maybe I should go get a chocolate bar and I will feel much better. That and getting my run in today!
Anyone can run. Really. Unless there is a medical reason, anyone can run. Not everyone likes to run. I know that too being someone who used to say she hated running. Although in retrospect it isn’t that I hated running. It was more that I had never given running a chance. So I unequivocally state again that anyone can run. That being said, there is a difference between just running and running well. This is the crossroads that I am at now. I’ve been running for a while now and I’ve gotten to the point that I might just want to run well.
Now I am not saying that I want to move to the top of the Pack or become a leading Master runner. I am saying that I think it might be time to take my running up a notch. Take it the the next level. Right now, I’ve been following generic training plans for specific events. I will say these have been amazingly helpful and I’ve learned from them. I know that without my Runner’s World Hat Trick Specific Training Plan that I would not have been able to run those events as well as I did. Online training plans are wonderful and will get you where you need to go. My problem that I am encountering and is starting to freak me out a bit is that I need to form my plan to start training for the Marine Corps Marathon while being prepared for other events. I seem to be going a few different directions at once.
Case in Point….
Running many events of different distances for the 9 plus 1 plan
Training for the Iron Girl Sprint Triathlon
Training for the Marine Corps Marathon and the final hill at the end of it.
Now I would have no problem following a plan on my own to train for one of these events, but I’m really having a problem wrapping my head around training for all of them at once. Probably because I don’t know what I’m doing and have no background in this field. Yes, I read my Runner’s World, Running Times and such but I’ve really been only running since I finished my first Tri in September of 2013. I’m in a bit of a quandary. I know I need to train. I know that both the Tri and the marathon will require serious training with the marathon only being a month after the Tri, I will need to train for them at the same time. That being said, I need to figure out how to train without over training, without causing injury, and without causing burnout. That is where a running coach might just be what I need.
I used to think that a Running Coach would be reserved for the “serious athlete.” The top of the Pack athlete. The career athlete. I used to think that a Stay-at-Home Mom wouldn’t need a Running Coach. What would the point be? Then I realized what the point would be? The point would be that they know what they are doing. The point would be that they can help me reach my goals. The point would be that they can help generate a plan just for me. Just like I’ve hired a Personal Trainer at the gym in the past, a Running Coach can help put me on the right path for running smartly. To help me run well. A Running Coach can help me reach my potential while at the same time giving me the skills that I will need to get to the end of the road all in one piece.
This is where I am now. I’ve started process. I have not hired a coach yet, but have contacted one to see her thoughts. Surprisingly, the cost is not as high as I thought it would be. To be honest, the monthly cost is cheaper than hiring a Personal Trainer for two sessions. Plus the coach that I am looking at has different packages depending upon my need. I don’t pay a gym membership right now and can justify the cost too. Although the biggest justification of the cost will be the peace of mind it will bring me.
Even though I have not hired a coach yet and am still investigating, just the thought of it is easing the stress. I am days away from turning 46. I am a Stay-at-Home Mom. I am a middle of the Pack runner. I have much to learn about the art of running and training. Bottom line is that I was wrong. A Running Coach is for an athlete at any level and I am worth it.