My Running Anniversary

February 18th, 2011 was a huge turning point in my life. I decided to start running.  The night before, I asked my brother if he’d help me.  With a shocked face, he agreed.  Every night we were at the track.  It was freezing, not only was it February, but the track at our high school is located on a hill which means it’s windy as hell.  I remember the second time I went running, we literally had to stop so I could catch my breath b/c the wind was so bad.  As promised, the first two weeks were terrible.  I wanted to quit but my brother wouldn’t let me.  We’d drive back, him talking away and me pretending I was listening but inside I wanted to puke.  800M seemed like so much. Once I was able to run more than that, I became obsessed.  I wanted to run longer and farther.

Oh Hey Shalane. How'd this get in here again..

 

Every workout I had planned for me, I tried to exceed. Sometimes I wish I was still like that.  Don’t get me wrong, I love hitting milestones with running but nothing beats running my first mile.  I was SO happy.  I ran a mile without stopping, something I never thought I could do especially in high school. Every now and then I feel like I’m at a standstill with running, like I’m not doing enough or achieving as many goals as I should.  But then I look back.

 

  • I went from running 800m to running 13.1
  • A mile in 11 and change to 7:06 (something I’m still working on– I want a 6 in there damnit!).
  •  Ran a 5K sub 30.

How could I write about running milestones & not include Pre?

This past week, I finally did that last one.  No it wasn’t a real race, but I knew I had to do it before my “one year”.  The funny thing is, I ran without looking at my Garmin and listened to my body.  I ran at what was comfortable, I didn’t feel like I was racing. Next thing I knew, a 5K flew by and I look at my watch… 28:27. Yeah baby! That’s 3 minutes FASTER than my previous 5K time.  Goes to me that I need to RELAX at races and that I can run fast.  Normally when I glance down at my watch and see a low number I tend to slow down because I think ” I can’t run that fast”.  This was a GREAT start for week 1 of Half Marathon training.  Every run after that has been sub 10 min mile, except for this past Saturday.  Saturday on schedule was a 8mi LR.  One of my co-workers agreed to run with me and we decided to hit the trails.  She was going to run 5 & I made up the extra mileage by running there & back from my house.  This was probably one of the worst runs of my entire running career.  I felt like crap when I woke up but how could I bail? I had finally talked her into running with me and now I’m going to cancel? I don’t think so.  I told myself after the mile there I’d feel better.  Unfortunately I didn’t.  My stomach hurt and my legs felt like cement, I needed sleep.   We headed into the trails & it felt good to be back, atleast for the 1st mile.  I had to keep stopping.  I NEVER do that & we were running so slow– a 12 minute mile.  Don’t get me wrong the trails are pretty tough all rolling hills with a few steep ones BUT I used to be able to run them when I first started running at a 9:45 pace.  Shit. I felt like I was going to puke and on top of it, embarrassed.  I hate asking to stop but I knew if I didn’t I was going to throw up.  We took about 4 breaks and we only ran 4.35 miles together.  Horrible.  I ran home after and felt sick all day.  At first  I thought it was b/c I didn’t eat breakfast or drink anything before the run but I didn’t feel good the whole weekend and my body hurt.  Yesterday I got a massage and sacrificed my run.  I figured 3 horrible slow miles or a massage? After much internal debate, I went with massage.

Today  I feel a hell of a lot better, my neck is still bothering me, but I’m pretty excited for my 5 miler tonight.  I’m hoping for some more sub 10min miles especially closer to my HMP of 9:10. Wishful thinking. At least my two favorite shows are on tonight, Switched at Birth & Jane By Design. They’re both on ABC Family. No judging please.

It's Nicole's birthday today! Say Haaaapppppy Birthhhhday!

 

 

Until next time,

 

Run Hard. Run Long. Run Strong.

My toes are supposed to feel like this?

And my training for my first 5k continues…

Although the thought of even running more than 2 miles used to scare me I am now trying to mentally prepare myself for my 10 mile long run in the trails. I drank a lot of water throughout the day because that’s my biggest downfall, I am always dehydrated! I also tried to eat well, I had a salad with tuna, croutons, and fresh mozzarella. YUM!!

With all my built up anxiety, I needed to start my run when I get home from work. Surprisingly, my long awaited 10 miler went by fast and easy, but not too easy it was 10 miles after all! About every 3 miles I had to stop for a water break but other than that my head stayed clear of mile counting and my form stayed strong, who knew? of course somehow my course consisted of running up the steepest hill 6 times, but whatever why not integrate a hill work out as well? I averaged a 10:30 pace which is an accomplishment since that was my long run pace on the streets!

I may have said it was an easy run, but as you can guess ten miles is no easy task. The toes on my left foot was NUMB for about 20 minutes. Obviously I freaked out because who would think this was normal! After being told to suck it up and stop complaining, I crawled up the stairs, showered, and then indulged in a much needed girls Mexican night with endless chips guacamole and skinnygirl margarita, I am on the 5k diet yanno? 😉

Running with my trainer

Luckily, I didn’t drink too much last night so I’m feeling good this morning!  On the agenda today, I have 4 miles at an 8:30 pace!  I started today off with my family at the beach.  I know I’m going to sound crazy, but all day I was thinking ” Crap. Am I going to be too tired for my run today, will I be able to keep that pace”.  Running is ALWAYS on my mind!

When I got home, I showered and then took off for my run with my brother in tow.  Although I was a bit nervous about having him there, I knew it was for the best since his Garmin watch can keep track of how many miles we run and the pace that we’re at.  After a quick warm up, we hit the trails yet again. I was paranoid at being on pace since I knew HE knew how fast I was going.  After mile 2, he took me around different trails to show my around, this was his turf yanno’.  We BSed for a little bit, when I say a little bit I mean it he can be a hardass, and he answered my zillion questions running through my head about running.  Running has been a great bonding experience for us, we’ve always been close but now we can actually do something together.

Yet again, the four miles came and went.  I can’t believe how the miles just fly by! I would have NEVER thought this could happen 5 months ago when a half mile was dreadful.  I have to admit, I was nervous to find out how fast I was going, but  I figured since he wasn’t yelling at me during the run to keep up that I must have been doing okay or that he was pitying me.  ::drum roll please:: I was on pace the WHOLE entire time.  I couldn’t believe it!!!  The funny thing is,  my brother actually broke a sweat too.  Maybe it was because of the 95 degree heat…. either way I felt good! I’ve never held that pace for more than 2 miles AND I was in the trails which is so much harder than the street.

My legs feel like cinderblocks writing this entry, but I know when the time comes it will be all worth it.  Tomorrow is an easy day which is all that I can look forward to right now!

Day 4- Early Morning Run

So I decided to get up at 7:30, which is early for me!, to get my run in before leaving for the city, it was friends 21st woo-hoo!  I attempted to stay in my development for my 6 mile run, but after the first mile I knew that wasn’t happening.  Since I’ve been running in my development for so long, I know where the tough spots are and where I normally get tired which to say the least, can be so mentally hard.  Before I even get to the hills I find myself slowing down and becoming out of breath because I know back when I started running, these were my troubles spots.  I keep trying to tell myself I shouldn’t be doing this, but I constantly find myself analyzing every little thing and counting the miles, which you know can’t be good.  So, at mile 3 I ran home hopped in my car and drove to some trails.

By this point the day was already heating up, I was kicking myself for hitting the snooze on my 6am alarm, I knew these last 3 miles weren’t going to be easy but I hit the trails with confidence anyway.  I remembered to bring my arm band, thankfully, stuck my iPhone in there and blasted Nirvana radio on Pandora, did you ever realize you work out better when you have angry music on?  I took off jamming out to some great music and woke the woods up with the raspy grungy voice of Kurt Cobain.  It was so beautiful to be in the trails in the morning,although I must have been the first one on the trails so I ran through all the spiderwebs first hand… ew.  Three miles came and went before I knew it.  I even stopped a few times to just take it all in, I felt like my friend Patty.  She does the same while shes on her bike rides.  It felt so nice and peaceful to just be there and breathe in fresh air.

Hopefully tonight I’ll stay true to my “5k” diet and don’t drink to much.  Gotta look and feel good for the race!

Day 3- 3 miles “easy”

After yesterday, I think I’m addicted to running in the trails.  Or basically anywhere but the route I’ve been taking.  I can’t believe how making a change in scenery can really improve my running.  I had been doing my runs in the same area for about 3 months now, which as you can imagine, became more mentally challenging the physically when I had to do my long runs.

So today, I decided to hit the trails for my 3 mile run.  According to my training plan, these were supposed to be at an easy pace.  I don’t know why, but I couldn’t hold back.  Maybe it was because I was on a new trail or I was just having a good day, but I just couldn’t run at an easy pace.  I ended up running at more of a tempo speed, which is running at a speed  in-between sprinting and a normal pace.  Needless to say, I was SWEATING.  On the agenda for the tomorrow is…. 6 miles! Should be fun 🙂

 

 

Day 2- 8X400’s… or so I thought.

So my run didn’t start off too well. I tried sneaking out the door without my brother knowing and of course as I was leaving, he was walking in!! Originally I was supposed to do 8×400 which is sprinting 8 times around the track. I got to 3 and was shot. Obviously I was very upset with myself and my brother said everyone has off days so we’ll try something else, which he says with a smirk on his face which I know all to well.

So he takes me to some cross country trails, makes me run down these 90 degree hills, okay maybe I’m exaggerating a little they were probably like 75 degrees but still!, and then do lunges up them 4 times. My legs were burning!! Then I stupidly told him I felt okay so he takes me deeper in the trails and has me do hill repeats on the SECOND highest point on Long Island!! Then I finished it off with a 1.5 mile cool down throughout the trails.

All in all, it ended up being a good running day and I learned to listen to my body. If I’m not feeling good doing a speed work out, I need to kick my own ass and do something else!