Friday, August 31, 2012

August 30, 2012 – 6.17 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This was a good run. I had to get this run in because I just *had* to cover the distance before my race this weekend.

It’s been a while since I’ve done a race and I am *really* excited about this one. I am a part of a cyber-group of lady runners called “Black Girls Run – Los Angeles” and I am going to meet many of them for the first time!!!

I’ve met a few BGR girls at races and when scheduling permits, I meet with a beautiful lady that I met on BGR.

At the beginning of the run, the goal was to just cover the distance. It had been awhile since I’d covered more than about 4 miles. However as usual, during the run, the goal shifted. I wanted to maintain 5k pace.

The goal changed for a couple of reasons: (1) I was losing daylight and I wanted to make it home before it got completely dark, (2) I had chores to do! I still needed to feed the kids, comb Jayda’s hair for school the next day and check Jordan’s homework, (3) My body was ready for it…. Craving it really and (4) I really wanted to take inventory of what my body would need to cover a 6+ mile road race.

It felt good. Here is what I discovered: (1) Even though I’ve been bothered by injury for the last few months, my fitness level hasn’t been greatly affected so a PR is not out of reach. Thank you, running! (2) After about the half way mark, my form suffers and I am too hard on my right side, so knee pain sets in at about the 5 mile mark. I’ll have to watch that. And (3) Be properly fueled and hydrate every mile or so.

I’m ready! I’ll letcha know how it goes!!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

August 28th, 2012 – 3.07 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This was a good run. I was losing daylight, so I didn’t do more than the usual distance.

The focus of this run was to work harder. Chris and I were watching Extreme Makeover and they had a lady on the program who needed to lose 150 lbs and they were running her through all the normal stuff. Exercise, nutrition, crying and whatnot.

They had her push herself to a certain HR (150, I think it was) and she whined until she got there. Then they let her stop. It reminded me that I needed to start tracking my HR again, too.

Ever since Coach Dion gave me that advice about how to run my daily run, pushing from one street pole to another, imagining I’m at the front of a race with the cameras on me and finishing the distance in 35 minutes, I’ve been setting my pace to always finish within that time frame, allowing for stops at traffic lights, of course.

Well, I’ve been able to do that distance, at that pace for quite some time without really pushing myself. So now it was time to push!!

I warmed up for the first mile or so. After that, there is the slightest incline on the route for the next half mile. That was when I turned on “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’” by the one and only Michael Jackson and hit it hard!!

It felt good. When I headed back home, I killed the declines cuz that’s just free money and only took breaks at the traffic lights.

A great run but the original intention was to get more distance in. I have a race this weekend and it’s a 10k. I know I can cover the distance. It would just be nice to get the distance in before the race.

Can’t do it tonight, though!!!

August 29th is Michael Jackson’s Birthday!!!!! And like every good MJ fan, I will be out celebrating!!!


Saturday, August 25, 2012

August 24, 2012 – 2.09 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This run was all joy! Our good friends Craig and Trista came to visit for a few days. Craig and Chris have been friends since high school and he is super cool. Craig and I worked together at the same software firm for about 3 years and Trista is my favorite Facebook buddy, so we go way back too.

We knew that they were planning a visit and Craig and I had this run planned for months. He’s a big bad Army dude who had completed a 20-mile hike two days before he came to see us so he was ready for an easy run.

This was great. He showed up at our place at about 10am and the scorching heat had passed so the weather was just perfect.

He set the pace and we talked and laughed and I just loved it. Running with Craig is as close as I’ll get to running with Chris. He’s easy going, I felt protected and the run was nothing but pleasure.

Thanks, Craig!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

August 22, 2012 – 3.78 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This was a great run and this was the prize: A Coconut Crème cupcake from Sweet Arleen’s. Mmmm….

It’s hard to say which I enjoyed more, the run or the cupcake. Both were sweet and delicious!

It was the evening of the first day of school!!! This is a happy Mom!!

Finally, summer is over! The kids can get back to their regularly scheduled program and maybe I can settle myself into a regular running schedule too.

Jordan needed a chapter book for his reading project, so we had to go to the public library. I love the public library. What self-respecting nerd doesn’t?

The books, the quiet, the relentless order and organization, the endless and accessible information…. It’s an anal-retentive, erudite, Type-A personality, Virgo’s dream!!!

And what can make a great trip to the public library a PHENOMENAL one? When Chris comes with us, and leaves me there so I can run the nearly four miles home!

The great thing about most city libraries is that they tend to be in a really pretty, well kept part of town and ours is no exception. It’s on the same block as the City Hall and the Police Department, so it is not only well kept, but very safe. The trees are beautiful and the walkways smooth and clean. Love it.

A beautiful run! My pace was decent but my main concern was making sure I consumed some calories while on this run because I wasn’t able to fuel up before we left. I brought a bottle of Gatorade and that did the trick. I was still very aware that I was starving during the whole run but it was only about 4 miles so I wasn’t worried about hitting The Wall.

I worked on breathing and form and it was a good time.

When I got home, I was too amp’d up to eat a cupcake, so I took a shower, played with my kids and had the cupcake for breakfast the next morning with my green tea. Mmmm…….

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

August 20, 2012 – 3.01 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This was a really good run. I am trying to get back to my “normal” after a minor bout with injury. This was a perfectly comfortable run.

However, I found myself distracted by my music. Usually, I really enjoy music and it enhances my experience far more often than not. Maybe because I was really interested in being in tuned to what my body was doing and the music pulled focus.

Whatever the reason, I found myself making conscious efforts to focus on how all the parts of my body were responding to the run. When I can do that, I tend to just run and “lose miles”. I’ll just start running and before I know it, I’m three miles in and have very little idea how I got there or whether or not I passed (and completely snubbed) a neighbor.

I love it when I can get lost in a run like that. Usually, I have no trouble with it. It clears my mind and I just…. Go.

I know I tend to block out everything around me during a run, so I’ve gotten into the habit of blowing a coach’s whistle whenever I’m crossing a street or driveway. I’m sure it annoys people, but I’ve got too much to live for to worry about looking stupid or offending the odd stranger for a second or two. I tend to run on busy streets and every time I hear a story of an accident caused by distracted drivers, reading or sending text messages, I get less and less concerned with offending drivers by making darn sure they see me when I’m on the street.

Also, being a woman, a whistle is a good idea, whether you’re running, shopping or just out and about. I’m always strapped with pepper spray too, which I also highly recommend. But if you’re going to carry both, just be sure you don’t fire the whistle and blow the pepper spray!

See ya on the next run! And be careful out there!

Friday, August 17, 2012

August 17, 2012 – 3.03 Mile Run

The continued prayer is, “Lord keep me focused. Keep my mind stayed on You. Help me to bring You praise. I know You believe in me. Please help me in my unbelief. Amen.”

This was a wonderfully victorious run. I have been dealing with bulging disc issues. My previous 3-Mile sprint was the last straw and my back just….. Gave up. The pain was immediate, excruciating and appeared to come out of no where.

That is not exactly true. I first tweaked my hip on a pretty intense trail run several weeks ago and never let myself recover completely. It started out with sciatic pain. Compensating for it during subsequent runs, swiftly moved the pain to my back. About a week and a half of this twisted form was all my 40-year-old frame could take.

After popping many Ibuprofen gel caps, I finally had to admit that I really messed myself up and couldn’t fix it on my own. I needed to see a doctor to get myself back to normal. Fortunately, just about everyone in my office goes to the same chiropractor and he’s right next door to our building. So I made an appointment and went to see Dr. Ed.

My biggest fear was that he would tell me that running was not for me and I would have to find another means to get my sweat on.

This is a big problem for me, as I believe running is the only real sport. No disrespect to all those wonderful, swimming, tumbling, racketing, throwing, shooting and diving Olympians. They all have my love and respect but frankly, Track & Field, the Marathon, and even that ridiculous Steeple Chase were the only things that held my attention. Although, honorable mention goes to Women’s Beach Volleyball. Yowza!

After seeing the doctor, I was told that I was twisted up pretty good and it would take a round of treatments to set me straight again. Being a sports doctor, he was just as eager to get me back into my running shoes, but in the meantime, I would have to do something else.

I had agreed to join a team for the Ventura County Dirty Girl Mud Run this November, so I figured swimming as well as other aquatic exercise was a good option to work into my cross training. So I headed to the nearest public pool and purchased a punch pass:

This is a washed out picture of me after an hour of swimming laps and water jogging. Feeling good:

But it wasn’t just swimming and water jogging. Dr. Ed also approved of yoga. This was not my favorite but it helped a great deal:

I spent the next two weeks, swimming, doing yoga and spending time with the fam. It was a great time.:

I made several loaves of Amish Friendship Bread. Yum!:

I went to see Michael Firestone in concert. He’s the best Michael Jackson impersonator around. He was great:

Spending time with my girl. She's cute!:

Chris and I took the kids to Hurricane Harbor. That was awesome!:

This is me and my Beloved. Sweet!:

Now I am back and ready to (slowly and easily) roll!!! I will continue on with the swimming and as much of the yoga as I can stand. Cross training is never a bad idea. Taking it easy was rough but it reminded me of how grateful I am to be strong and healthy. Injury sucks but I have so much respect for my body and how wonderfully and fearfully made it is. God is so good and He made our bodies so perfectly. I’m so glad I get to run around in this one. It’s a good one.