Monday, July 31, 2006

I'm Melting....

Seriously, it is incredibly hot and humid out.

This morning, the entire family went down to the fairgrounds so I could re-do the 10K markings. The markings are all on the road but they are so faded, it really takes some work to see a few of them. I decided to get some neon green paint to paint over the faded green that they were.

Sunday, Jim and I had to do some major hunting to find the 5 mile mark on the road. We knew about where it should be and it took three laps to find it. All of the mile markings, as well as the start and finish, of the 10K route are on the left side of the road...the way you would be running. For some reason, the 5 mile mark is on the right side of the road. We never saw it because we were looking on the left. The mark that we always thought was the 6 mile mark is not correct. When I stopped to paint it, it has a large X through it. In looking around, I found the actual 6 mile mark a few yards away. All of the milage marks are now neon green and easy to see.

I met Candi and Samantha down there this evening for a run. I thought wetting my hair and my shirt before the run would make it a little cooler. Ha! It was still close to 95F with over 80% humidity.

I have a new watch that I actually can figure out how to get split times on so I did that today. We ran 3 miles in 36:59. Our split times were: 1 mile - 11:52, 2 mile - 12:45 and 3 mile - 12:20. Overall, I think we did awesome considering we were melting. It sure seemed like those mile markers were getting further and further apart as we ran.

Candi and I are meeting tomorrow evening for another 3 mile run.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Not A Fluke!

I posted last week that I had a totally awesome 4 mile run. It was, I figured, a combination of lower temperature, lower humidity and a desire to get the run finished. I chalked it up to a fluke that I finished it in just under 50 minutes.

This morning, I headed down to the fairgrounds to meet Jim for a 5 mile run. Candi and Samantha were going to be there at 7:30 am but since I was already there, we would not be running together (other than at the same park and passing one another along the route) It was close to 80 degrees out by the time we started to run and the humidity was about 80%...can you say dripping wet with sweat. My ponytail was soaked from being on my back.

Anyway, when I run, as I have stated before, I turn on my stopwatch and then switch to regular time. I don't even really make a note of the actual time since I don't want to be tempted to look and feel pressured to speed up. Today, as we approachd the 4 mile mark, I decided to switch over to just check it.

It was 50:03!! That means my 4 mile time from last week was not a fluke after all. I really am getting faster even if I don't feel like I am. There are days where I feel like I am running at such a slow pace that I am embarassed for myself but then my watch shows me that it was a pretty fast pace for me.

Chuck went out of town last weekend and we have not heard from him since. I am not sure what milage he wants us running this week so I am going to just up everything one mile. My daily runs will be 4 miles and I already did my 5 long run.

I am just so chuffed that I am finally seeing some visable signs of improvement!!

Friday, July 28, 2006

My Mind is Blank

You know, as I am running during the week, I often think of things I mean to put on my blog. So I open the window to jot them down and what happens?

I sit and stare at a white box because I can't remember a single thing I meant to say. :::sigh:::

I remember thinking it was something rather profound but apparently it was not that profound if I can't remember it at all.

In any event, I met Anita from my Half group this morning for a run. The Titans are at APSU so part of our normal route was blocked. We still ran in the downtown area and then back to APSU. We did walk the hills though. There was a nice breeze for about .03 seconds of the run but the humidity was low.

The run ended up being about 3.25 miles and we did it in 42:52. After my run, we had rain pretty much the rest of the day so lawn mowing was put on the back shelf.

To prevent another blank when I come to blog, I better start writing things down as it occurs to me.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Simply Running

This was posted on a message board I read by someone named Falco. It sums up running very nicely, I think.

There's a stretch of road that I run on that is long and straight and seems to go on forever. I used to hate it, but now it's my favorite place. See I don't have to do anything, just run. I don't have to avoid dogs, dodge traffic, or encounter potholes. It's just me and the road.

Breathe in, breathe out.

Last night while I was on that stretch I began to think how powerfully simple this all is. We ask our body to run and it first not far...but then over time it becomes this machine. A simple perfect machine. Breathe in, breathe out. One foot and another. An endless repetition of a series of moves that propels you further and further along. And the miracle of the human body is that it responds by carrying you further and further until one day you show up at work and say, "I ran eight miles yesterday" and all the jaws drop. did. Something that your co-workers consider positively superhuman. You did it. You may not look like a superhuman, but at that moment you are.

My mind flashes back to a conversation I've had about running. Every run is a test; a test to see what you are made of. Do you have it in you today? Here on the road there is no way to cheat. It's simple, you either run it or you don't. Either you win or the road wins. And no matter how sick you are, no matter how tired you are, the road still asks, do you have it in you? Even if you had a great run yesterday, the road is still out there today and today you have to prove what you are made of. When Oprah ran the marathon folks said, yeah, but she had a personal trainer. Yeah, but she has a personal chef. Right, but no one can run it for her. She took every step herself. And you...well you take every step yourself.

Breathe in, breathe out.

The road doesn't care if you are good looking, smart, young, old The test is the same. What do you have in you today? Some days you come home glowing with accomplishment. Other days you lose. You feel fat, heavy, out of shape, tired. Well meaning friends say "why do you do that to yourself?" but you aren't doing it TO yourself, you are doing it FOR yourself.

Breathe in, breathe out. Scuff, scuff, scuff, scuff, scuff. Individually the movements are simple, even amateurish. Collectively though, they are powerful.

Along the way you lose things. Some of you have lost weight. I haven't. But I've lost that voice I call the "inner loser" who tells you all the reasons why you can't run. (you're too old, too fat, too tired, too sick, you just ran yesterday). My inner loser can't run more than a mile. I leave him beside the road early in my runs these days.

You lose the stress of the day. No matter how bad your day is, you sweat out all those problems on a long run. You shut off the voices. You silence the chatter. Just you and the road, alone.

Breathe in, breathe out.
I know we all have goals. Five K goals and marathon goals and negative splits. But on your next run let me encourage you to just run and enjoy the simple pleasure of running. No watch, no time limit, you're not going anywhere, you're not getting anywhere. You just are...a simple lone runner...on a long stretch of road.

I'll see you out there.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Scummy People

I met Candi and Samantha down at the fairgrounds for a run this evening. As we were walking to the starting point, a small kitten came out onto the path.

Now, there is no way that a kitten could be out there unless someone brought her out and dumped her there. One of my kids picked up the kitty and played with her in the van while I completed my run.

It was a good run this evening. The humidity was higher than it was yesterday but it was still a good run. We did 3 miles in 37:17.

Candi is going to do the St Jude's Half with Samantha and I! We are also meeting tomorrow night for a run.

I stopped on the way home to get some kitten food and a litter pan. Tomorrow I am going to contact cat rescue places to see if I can get her a place without having to take her to the shelter.

It just really burns me that people will dump animals and leave them to be harassed, killed or starve to death.

Sunday, July 23, 2006


That sums up my run this evening, it totally rocked! Now, how often do I actually get to say that??

My alarm went off at 6:20 am this morning so I would have time to stumble out of bed and make it down to the fairgrounds by 7:00 am for a 4 mile run. My throat felt awful, swallowing was painful and a simple drink of water to relieve a dry throat wasn't going to cut it. I croaked to hubby to shut the alarms off, rolled over and went back to sleep (after getting a cough drop) This is the first time since February that I have totally blown off a run without letting anyone know but the Sunday runs are kinda a loose affair.

I mapped out a 4 mile route in the neighborhood but it actually came to 4.1 unless I wanted to stop a few houses down the street and walk. After dinner, I bribed a couple kids to come along with me and set out.

I figured it would be a good run since although I was going a longer distance, the temperature was down and even better, the humidity level was significantly lower.

I was feeling pretty darn good by the time I came upon a hill about at the 3 mile mark. In the high heat and humidity, I have made it about 3/4 up before I walk the last bit. Today I felt like I sailed on up.

Chuck had set my long run goal for 4 miles at 55 minutes or a 13:40 pace. I felt like I had done better than that but was kinda hesitant to look at my watch. I felt great but would I then feel crummy if my time was more than 55 minutes?

I ran my 4.1 miles in 49:20!!!! That is a personal best and just a tad over a 12:00 mile. I knew I had an awesome run no matter what my watch said but it was nice to see my watch agreed with me.

I have not met up with my running buddies, Candi and Samantha, in a few weeks. We are meeting tomorrow for a run. Candi has been sick so has not run in a bit. Samantha told me she is going to run St Judes Half with we need to talk Candi into it. She totally can do it.

I think it will be great if we can run the Half together. We have run so many races together since February that it would be weird to run one without them. Of course, when I say run with them, I mean in the same race. Both Samantha and Candi run faster than I do. Even if we start at the same time, they both finish before me but it is nice to know they are on the course with me and will cheer for me at the finish line.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Humidity, Victoria's Secret and Reebok

Wow, with a title like that, doesn't it make you want to read what in the world is going on?

It has been so stinking hot and humid here that it makes running or even the thought of running just something you don't want to do. I have been out running but you just drip in sweat before you even go a half mile. Yesterday morning, I had planned to go out running at 7 am but it was close to 10 am before I actually got out. The temperature rose from 88F to 92F while I was running, it was sunny and I was sweltering. I had forgotten my washcloth so I was dripping sweat into my eyes. I did bring my mp3 player with me for the first time. I think it made the run go faster even though I felt like I wanted to just collapse in the shade with water pouring on me.

This probably will come under the too much information category but oh well. I normally wear cotton underwear (Jockey for Her) but with the cotton comes chafing at times. I was in the mall with my oldest daughter who went into Victoria's Secret for something. I saw some underwear that I thought I would try. The seams are really nice and flat. I have to say that I like them and so far, no chafing!

I had planned to get a new pair of running shoes next month but since there was a sale (50% off!) I went to look. I normally wear New Balance shoes because I just like them. There was not a NB in the model I wear (766) so I tried out a Reebok. I tried on a mens shoe first but the arch felt like it was higher than normal. I tried a ladies shoe on my left foot and I liked that arch better. When I put on the right foot I discovered it also had a high arch. I asked Michelle who said that it is very possible that I land harder on my right foot and the arch does get pounded down. After walking around a bit, I didn't notice the arch.

I went for a 3.2 mile run in the new shoes this evening and it was amazing how different they felt from my New Balance. I like the Reeboks but I think I will probably end up getting a pair of the 767 (updated 766 model) in September. Once I do that, I can alternate my shoes when I run.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Just Seven Days

It has only been seven days since my last blog but since so much has taken place, it sure seems like longer.

Monday through Wednesday, I spent down near Gallatin at Boxwell Boy Scout Reservation. I had 10 of my Webelos doing resident camp so I was with them. Other than it being incredibly hot, humid and buggy, it was not too bad. Devin came down with a nasty case of chiggers and hives but recovered quickly. I did have a pedometer with me so kept track of my milage. I figure I walked about 5 miles.

Once I got back, I went running on Thursday evening with Greg. I decided to run his route again and once again, my time totally sucked. I did it in 41:45 It was so darn humid out that it made me question my sanity, really.

Friday morning I met Chuck down at APSU for a run. We started at Austin Peay and then wound our way through downtown to end back at APSU. I asked how long it was, he said 3 miles. When I mapped it, it was 3.4 miles. I did it in just 41:24, which I thought was awesome. There were a few hills downtown that I gave up and walked on.

Saturday, I went out with Kristen in the neighborhood. Now, she has been running in Idaho some and she thought she would be okay to run. Before we ever hit a half mile, she was whipped and walking most of the route. It is incredibly humid, have I mentioned that? In any event, I ended up going 3.2 miles in 41:04.

Today, I met Jimmy from my half marathon group down at the fairgrounds. We did a 4 miles. Chuck had he wanted us doing 4 miles in 55 minutes so we obliged by doing it in 53:32.

I have not met with Candi or Samantha for a week now, I need to email them so we can meet up. I know that I will be meeting up with Chuck on Friday but will have to skip out on the Wednesday run.

Oh, I have had a minor breakthrough, if you can consider it one. I have been able to stop running and walk during my runs. Now, it is not long walking period, usually under 2 minutes, but still walking. I have been able to start running and continue running. I am not sure why and while I am not planning to make it a habit, it is nice to know I can walk occasionally and still pick up running again.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Hills, oh my!

Greg runs a different route down to the school than I do. My route is actually longer but he feels his is an easier workout, even discounting the milage difference. We went out running so I decided to try his route.

The major difference, besides the milage, is that his route takes us up the killer hill on East Henderson that I generally avoid. Yuck! I went ahead and I was able to run up it but my calves were not happy with me.

Tuesday was the 4th so I wanted to be sure to sneak a run in. Since I had done Greg's route, I wanted to do my regular route and not face that hill again. My calves were still pretty upset with me and I had such a sucky time. 5K took me 44 minutes! Eeek!

I decided to take a short break from running for a few days but still went out walking with Kaitlyn. For reasons known only to her, she asked to go down North Henderson.! I knew there was a steep hill there but it makes the hill on E. Henderson look like a minor bump. No wonder the kids call the hill on N. Henderson "The Unstoppable Hill" Alas, it was all well since we were walking but it was still a workout going up it.

Today was my first official run with the Half Marathon training group. Three of us showed up. We did a mile warm up run, which is more than I normally do. Then we did a three mile run that Chuck timed.

I never look at my split times unless for some reason there is a someone there calling it out when I pass a mile marker. My one mile time was 11:32! I was surprised, I thought I was going much slower. My three mile time was 37:02, I thought I did pretty darn well.

It was early, 7:00 am, but it was nice to go and get my run out of the way. I am meeting my 5K group tomorrow evening for a run. We have not been able to meet for over a week. This will be my last run until Thursday since I will be out at Boxwell with my Webelos this week.

Oh, yeah, I also lost another pound this week and changed my weigh in day to Fridays.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Testing My Resolve

The next two weeks are going to be a test for me, running wise.

With the 4th on Tuesday, that means I won't be meeting my group to run. I have Cub Scout Roundtable on Thursday so that run is out. Saturday I have a group run with my half marathon group. Sunday I will probably meet with my running buddies, if they can. That week, I am out at Cub Scout camp until Thursday evening, when I have family coming in.

Now, with the exception of the days I am out at camp, I *can* get a run in around my neighborhood but that external motivation in the form of running buddies sure goes a long way.

Kaitlyn started to work on a walking badge for Girl Scouts so I will be walking with her daily. She has to walk daily for 3 weeks. This evening, we went 1.38 miles and she complained I went to fast the entire time. I checked, we were almost going at a 20 minute mile pace so I think she is just wanting to stroll, not really walk.

I have not done so in some time but tomorrow I weigh myself and will hopefully adjust my meter. I think I may change my weigh in day to Friday starting at the end of this week.