Tag Archives: 6 month running challenge

On teaching myself to run…for me.

I wrote up a post for my sister’s blog today, on teaching myself to run…for me. Hop over and give it a read, will ya? ;-)

Because I never thought I was a runner. I am a runner because I run. And I <3 it.

Now, off to continue enjoying this lovely little long weekend up in here! Back atcha tomorrow, enjoy the day my friends!

Anticipation

I feel like I’ve gone through this week with a cloud of anticipation hovering ever so slightly above my head. And all because of my next work trip on Sunday. It’s the biggie, the annual sales kick off, as I’ve mentioned before, and I guess I just keep worrying that I’ll regress back to last year and let fear take over, rather than let fear fuel me, instead.

I’ve let this cloud of anticipation hover over everything this week.

My runs, for example. While I’ve had a few good ones (6, 5 and 5 intervals), I’ve woken up extremely tired, as if I didn’t sleep at all (probably because I’ve also been dreaming of said work trip. Sigh), and my legs have felt like lead. And I have been fighting off what feels like the start of a cold (I think I may have beaten it though, with lots of emergen-c, tea and water! Fingers crossed!), so that hasn’t helped the heavy, draggy feeling either.

Even my date night in with M on Wednesday felt different. I wasn’t feeling great. He wasn’t either. We did, however, enjoy dinner together, and laid on the couch wrapped up, in silence much of the time. Just being. But my mind still wandered for awhile. As hard as I tried to turn it off, it was an internal battle to just enjoy the moments with him, not jump ahead to this day next week (Weds), when I will be red-eye-ing it home, not having date night in. We ended our night feeling connected again, however, so all was not lost. I just wish I didn’t let so much of the night slip past before realizing what I was doing.

I let the cloud of anticipation cloud over things that should be enjoyable. And it frustrated the hell out of me this week.

But if I keep allowing the anticipation be of the fearful kind, how am I supposed to transition that to fuel and courage? 

By looking back at my reminders post. By looking back at the year I’ve had. By looking inside myself and seeing the strength, courage, and capabilities I have gained this year.

I am writing this post today so I remind myself the next time the cloud of anticipation tries to take me over and take over moments that should be enjoyable, with the forethought of the pending trip ahead. I am at the point where I am trying to psyche myself up for it, because I know once I am there, I will enjoy it. I will mingle. I will enjoy seeing my colleagues, some of whom I have not seem in many months or even all year.

I can do this. I have to do this. No more anticipating. I’m ready. I have to be. And I am. 

And in the meantime, I have an (abbreviated) weekend to enjoy the shit out of, right?

 

My 6-Month Run Challenge: Week 3

Week 3 of my run challenge is in the books! And honestly, with each week, I feel better and better and more excited at the progress.  My legs feel stronger and not as fatigued with the routine I’ve built around it. I am honestly already so glad I decided to do this because if I am feeling this good after three weeks, I can’t imagine how I’ll feel after three months, let alone 6!

This past week is when I realized just how much stretching is pretty crucial to my challenge and to running generally, for me. Because I have the world’s tightest hip flexors ever. No joke. They get downright achy after I run and when I’m sitting all day, and in barre n9ne classes, while we always stretch and the moves are definitely strengthening them further, I find that I need to stretch at least twice a day during the day. I realized this after embarking on one of my ‘maintenance/recovery’ type runs last week, where my legs just felt like lead and would.not.move. Every mile was awful, and I barely made it to 3 miles. Instead of trying for 5, I hung it up, and stretched. And stretched. And stretched some more (thanks for your tips, ladies! Ah the world of Twitter!). Because I had my interval run planned for the next day and I wanted to kill it. And I didn’t want to move it to a different day either (I am super stubborn when it comes to changing up my routine once I’ve set it in my mind. I know, I know, I should chill a little on that!).

And whatdya know? Wednesday came and I knocked out almost 6 miles of intervals!! I extended my ‘rolling intervals’ routine from last week, starting with 1.5 steady run, then starting at 6.5, I ran 1.5 mins, then recovered for 1 minute, all the way through 8.0. Holy fast at that last one. I actually had to hold onto the rails at one point, because I legit thought I’d fall off. And after all was said and done, I felt awesome after, and sweaty like whoa.

One thing I did not accomplish last week was an outdoor run. I was psyching myself up to get my 6.5 mile ‘long’ run done outside on Saturday, but given M was going to do his weight day, I didn’t want to run outside alone. I know, wusstastic. But I ended up having an awesome run inside, my longest dreadmill run to date, in fact! And I opted to listen to music (combo of David Guetta and LMFAO kept me pumped up! This week I shall add Jock Jams. Don’t judge.) and that totally made the miles fly.

This week, I have 1-2 outdoor runs planned and I will at LEAST do one outside. AT LEAST. I have Thursday and Friday off (off through January 3, actually!! Woo!) and have a rundate with my sis and friend Steph planned for Friday, which should be a great way to get that 6.5 mile ‘long’ run in again (will bump that to 7 miles next week. Good timing given aforementioned time off, and I can hopefully run outside at a later time of day when it warms up).

So, once again, what about you? What did you do this week for your own self-challenges? What worked? What didn’t?

**asslap to everyone adding some sweat to their lives, no matter what form it comes in…yoga, running, walking, swimming, kickboxing, barre, you name it, it counts ;-) **

I need to remember this anytime I tell myself I am not a 'runner'

“The number only has as much power as you give it”

I’ve never fully believed words spoken to me more than I did last night.

Words spoken by M after I started to fixate on a particular number I saw last night that I wasn’t quite expecting. Now I won’t go into details of that number, because honestly, in the grand scheme of things, it just doesn’t matter. What does matter is how I handled it and what I learned last night.

I thought I would be more upset. I started to fixate.

But then I looked at myself in the mirror. Really looked. And you know what? I look GOOD. I do. I have worked really hard. Numbers don’t always show the true picture, in my opinion. It’s how you look, feel, and how your clothes fit.

And in the grand scheme of things, there are far more bigger things in life than worrying about numbers. Thank you again Susan for such a perspective-laden post. It’s one I will honestly always look to when I start to go down negative paths.

“The number only has as much power as you give it.”

I didn’t give it power. I used my own willpower to combat any fixations from happening. I used my own willpower not to go down a self-defeating path, tearing myself apart. I used my own willpower to turn around the negativity that was brewing into positivity. Mind over matter. I am winning this battle against overthinking, anxiety, and negative self-image and body-image.

Six months ago, I didn’t think it was possible. Three months ago, I didn’t think it was possible. But now? It is. It feels vindicating, as though I’ve won the battle against myself. I’m winning it, and I don’t ever want to go back to letting it win over me again.

It feels like I can breathe again. Today is a new day. And it feels so good.

*update* this is, in fact, not my ass. As much as I'd like for it to be ;-)

~~

In other news…I am excited to see that my running challenge is getting some interest from this fabulous blog-land (see my sister’s fun post on our twitter chatter the other night, it was priceless!). Lee is in, and I think Alicia might be too. Nikki as well, but for yoga and ‘twitter accountability.’

Who else wants to join?? I seriously think it is going to help me, and others, get through the cold winter months and keep up the momentum we’ve all built up all year long. Bring it ON!!

Applying ‘the 60-day challenge’ to running…in 6 months.

*First of all, thank you all for your words of encouragement on my ‘the thing about blogging’ post yesterday. I was actually completely taken aback (in a good way) by your support and range of suggestions and perspectives on the topic. And to think, I just slapped that post up because it had been swirling in my mind a lot lately, not thinking it would elicit a ton of feedback. Sometimes it’s those posts that truly get the best feedback, somehow (the ones you think won’t for whatever reason). So, thank you. I’m still figuring out my ‘approach’ on my blog and what I may or may not change in terms of frequency, topics, and focus, but for now, I’ll just post whatever comes to me, whenever that may be.**

I’ve been thinking a lot about how I am going to keep some sort of running training regime into my weekly workouts through the cold winter months.

I want to maintain some mileage. As in years past, I tend to run 3-4 days a week 3-5 miles (read: just enough not to want to gouge my eyeballs out on the dreadmill)…I don’t want my mileage to meander too low, so once spring comes and I want to run longer, I am not starting from scratch.

I would love to increase my pace (notice I didn’t say speed…because I firmly believe I will never be a 8 minute mile runner…and I am completely okay with that!). I’m probably a 10 minute miler, maybe a little under. So I know some sort of intervals (maybe these borderline-crazy-ass ones…or any others this crazy-ass-but-awesome guy has in mind!)

I want to use the dreadmill to my advantage and finally get my breathing under control. So far, it is really helping. The intervals I attempted (from aforementioned borderline-crazy-ass ones…) this week and last week were scary as hell for me, but with a few modifications, I was able to hold an uncomfortable pace for 1/4 – 1/2 mile increments. And ya know what? The breathing wasn’t half bad. My true test will be running in chilly temps outside, which I have shied away from of late, but plan to get out there this Saturday (don’t let me chicken out, Steph!).

And finally…I want to run another half marathon. Yep. I know. I said I never would. But things change.  I want that do-over experience that I almost had during the time I just ran, and Dori’s post today really motivated me and inspired me to just go for it (no, not a full marathon like my lovely but crazy-ass sister hehe)…whenever I feel comfortable doing that. Maybe it’ll be one of the half marathons Jess does in prep for her full marathon, or maybe it will be a completely different one. I don’t know yet. And I don’t even know if I will talk about what race I decide on so I don’t build up this sense of expectation and anticipation that I think partially did me in, mentally, for the last one (in addition to lots of other race day snafus!).

Why am I saying all of this? Because it dawned on me. I need to apply the 60-day challenge mentality to running. See where I am in six months. If I could get the results I got from barre n9ne in six months, can you imagine what I can potentially accomplish with a six month ‘challenge’ for running?! The possibilities honestly excite me.

What’s my plan? Well, it’s a work-in-progress in my mind. I’d love your input, friends, and suggestions on how I can accomplish the goals I mentioned here, in a good chunk of time. Six months. Six months is totally doable for just about anything I would like to accomplish, right?

Initial thoughts on my plan of attack:

  • A base of 3 solid runs per week
  • One interval run, alternating between straight up speed and (eek, gasp, noooo), incline intervals. I NEED to conquer hills. This is the way to do it.
  • One ‘longer’ run each week. Right now, my longest dreadmill run is 5.5 miles this fall. Not bad but not very far, either. I’d like to gradually increase that by 1/2 mile each week (maybe more, depending how I feel).
  • One ‘maintenance run’ per week – 4-6 miles.
  • And finally, I’ll spin once a week for some cross-training activity and to keep my legs strong.
What do you think? Suggestions? What else do you think would help me achieve the goals I am setting forth in my 6 month running challenge? 
Ready…set….go!