Medal Monday!

Happy #MedalMonday!!!

This one resembles a really HARD weekend. I mean, heartbreaking. A real slap in the face. BUT it’s one that taught me SO much. It makes me realize how far I’ve come in not only a few year of running overall, but in just a few months of rehabilitating myself…

Rock n Roll New Orleans 5K and Half marathon. March of 2018. This was the weekend that I crumbled. My ability to run literally fell apart. What had been a small “naggle” in my hip area (which I now speculate was extreme tightness of the piriformis muscle causing a pinched sciatic nerve) was suddenly debilitating. I (slowly) ran the 5K with my dad and felt like I could barely hold on. I was trying so hard to enojy my time with him and the scenery (pace/speed was the LAST thing on my mind) – but it was hard to enjoy anything with this discomfort. I felt off.

The next day, I showed up to the starting line to run the Half Marathon. I was worried but thought I’ll warm up after a while! I’m not injured… I got this.

Denial. Something was wrong me. I had to stop and walk within the first half mile. That’s not like me. My goal pace was a 7:40 minute mile for 13.1 miles. Not this. I felt dull, helpless, and useless as strong runners flew by. That should be me… I thought. Something was terribly wrong. I wanted to cry. I did. I waddled my way to that finish line. Walking by spectators, stopping to watch the bands, trying – really trying – to enjoy anything I could. My slowest Half Marathon yet, but one I will surely never forget.

Since this day in March, I’ve been coming back to running – physically and mentally -slowly but surely. For weeks I couldn’t run. It hurt just to walk. I asked for recommendations and suggestions from my running group, got dry needling done, stretched, and was diligent about exercises. I couldn’t sit or put one foot in front of the other without pain.

Then, I walked. Then ran for one minute at a time. Eventually I worked up to two miles, which felt like eternity. It didn’t feel good but the pain slowly faded. I still feel it “there,” but I’m happy to say that with consistent warming up, I’ve managed to keep it at bay (I guess you can only get away with jetting out the door for so long…). I’d like to say I’m coming back stronger. At least that’s the plan.

I will never ever again take for granted an effortless run. That weekend was hard. Depressing, really. Running didn’t feel good so it didn’t make me happy. I can confidently say: running makes me HAPPY again and I am beyond THANKFUL for today’s 5 miles.

THANK YOU Lifelong Endurance for being a game changer and getting me back on my feet.

I think each run teaches us a lesson – have you ever learned the hard way?

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Training Update & Highest Monthly Miles Yet!

Hello, July!

The end of June marks an important month in my book! Looking at my monthly totals, I ran my highest mileage in one month ever in the two years I’ve been running consistently! 192.3 miles (309.5K)! I know, I know – how could I NOT just run 8 measly more miles to make it a nice, round 200?! As much as I’d love to see that number, I know I will one day, and I KNOW I needed my rest day. After all, it’s about quality, not quantity anyway – though we all love to see a nice number on our stats. 😉

Thank you to Lifelong Endurance for not only getting me up and running (literally) after my injury, but for helping me come back stronger.

So, let’s see how my last week of an epic (for me!) month went!

Monday:

5 miles easy

After doing speed yesterday (did my runs a little out of order because – life), I wasn’t sure how this would feel. Specifically, I wondered how “easy” my easy run would feel, if at all. What do you know! It ended up feeling pretty good (once I had my coffee!)!!

Tuesday:

2 miles easy, 6 x 1K @ 7:45-7:35, 2 miles easy

This one was TOUGH. I actually plugged the workout into my watch, which I had been meaning to teach myself how to do for EVER. My inspiration for this was my Coach keeping me on my toes by using Kilometers… HA! No way I was going to be able to track that on my own (Kilometers = gibberish to me) 🙂 I’m thankful for this (silver lining!) because it turns out plugging in a workout is ridiculously easy! I can’t believe I hadn’t done it until now. It was nice to be told what to do and see my splits afterwards! The run was not easy but I did it!

Wednesday:

4 miles easy

So, waking up at 4-5:00 am daily to run can be *slightly* tiring – but COMPLETELY necessary during Texas summers. I was going to sleep in today but saw that it would be 103 degrees after work (“feels like” 110)… SO! 5:00 am it was! Glad I did it!

Thursday:

6 miles easy

I started off super slow and tired but after a mile or two, it was nice and smooth!

Friday:

Tempo! 2 miles easy, 3 @ tempo, 1 mile easy

This one felt surprisingly GOOD! I ran in a new/different location so it was nice to switch it up and I felt powerful!!!

Saturday:

Long run! 14 miles – 8 miles easy, 6 @ tempo/hard

HOLY HUMIDITY. I died. I didn’t know HOW the heck I was going to step it up for the last 6 miles. I didn’t step it up MUCH pace-wise, but I worked hard and did my best. I kept it at a little under a 9 minute mile the last 6 so I was happy with that!

Sunday:

REST!

How do you measure your running goals? Distance/# miles run? Time? Enjoyment? All of the above? 🙂