Friday, September 21, 2012

I'm Baaaaaaack!!!

I hadn’t run since last Saturday’s Chick-Fil-A Fall Stampede 5K because my running partner is sick and I’ve had scheduling difficulties, plus I’ve been feeling under the weather – not quite sick but like my body is trying to get there. 

Until this morning!  I went out about 6:45, as soon as it was light, and made it my goal to run each mile in 12-1/2 minutes or less.  I’ve done that before but not in a long time and have been right at 13 minutes per mile for at least the last 6 weeks, as long as I’ve been keeping a log.  So, 1 mile at 12-1/2 minutes means I should be at the half-mile mark at 6:15.  I could tell I was starting out running faster than usual, and I got to the half-mile mark at 5:something.  Woo hoo!  At one mile I was at 11:52, more than 30 seconds ahead of pace!  Thank You, God! 

I should be at the 2-mile mark at 25:00.  I was there at 24:29.  Thank You again, God! 

I should be at the 3-mile mark at 37:30.  Actually, there isn’t a mark at 3 miles, just 3.1, and I was there at 39:15!  I haven’t been under 40 minutes in a month!  God, I don’t know how You made this getting-older, almost-sick body go faster, but You did!  Thank You! 

I did remember to move my arms forward because my running partner told me, “Where your arms go, your legs will follow.”  I was aware of someone else’s advice to breathe in through my nose and out through my mouth instead of in and out through my mouth, but I just can’t do that yet.  I’ll practice it when I walk, but when I run, I need to get as much oxygen in as I can right now. 

I feel really good.  Yes, I am tired and I feel a little bit of soreness in my hip joints.  No, not soreness, just awareness that my hips connect my legs to my trunk.  But it’s a good tired and a good awareness!  Ahhhh!!!  I’m baaaaaaack!!!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

My First Long Run (well, sort of)

I’ve been wanting to do a long run for a few weeks.  I always run 3.1 miles and have started going a little bit farther most times, but probably haven’t gotten farther than 1/10 of a mile beyond 3.1.  Nothing wrong with that.  It’s how I got to 3.1 miles.  I just felt the need to see how far I could go if I didn’t set limits.  My plan was to run as far as I could but remember that I had to go all the way back. 

This morning I drove to the closest spot to my house where I could get on the Pinellas Trail – Park Street and Bay Pines Blvd. 

I started by going up the stairs.  It’s hard to see them, but they’re under the third lit traffic light in this picture.  Nothing like a good flight of stairs to start your workout!  J  The trail then had to go down, of course, which was fun.  It continued across the water where I had a gentle breeze.  Ahhh!!!  So refreshing compared to running in what feels like 100% humidity for the last five months. 
I continued running and listening to music.  I seemed to be making slow progress because when I looked at my watch it said I had been running for about 12 minutes but I wasn’t to the song I usually hear at the 1-mile mark.  Uh oh.  Why was I running slower this morning?  Oh.  Maybe it was the Five Guys burger I had last night.  Ugh.  L  I won’t be doing that again for a long time, if ever.  And if I do, I’ll try to remember to order a little burger, which has only one patty. 

Anyway, I kept plugging along.  I had no way of really measuring distance on the trail.  They should put mile markers on the trail.  They could start at the north end and put markers every mile and start at the south end and put markers every mile in the other direction.  I should suggest that to the county. 
After a while I came to the overpass/hill at Seminole Blvd.

Whee!  Downhill is fun! 

Chugging along, enjoying my music, remembering to pick my feet up.  Almost done!  I could see another overpass/hill coming up, but 40 minutes was also coming up, which is how long it takes me to run 3.1 miles.  I couldn’t quit at the bottom of the hill, so when I hit 40 minutes I continued running.  I got to the bottom of the hill at 41:20 and then walked up it.  This was the one at 113th Street.  I walked across then down the other side, turned around, and did it again.  HA!  I WILL conquer hills even if I have start out by walking them! 
I walked back to the car, 3.1 miles away.  I ended up going 6.2 miles plus two and a half overpasses/hills in 1 hour and 47 minutes.  That’s twice as far as I’ve ever gone and I ran half the way. 

It didn’t turn out exactly like I’d envisioned with me pushing myself to run, but I just couldn’t see running up another overpass/hill at the end of my usual run.  Maybe next time. 
I definitely put $2 in my workout jar today instead of just $1.  J 

That piggy’s getting fat!  And I’m not! 

In related news, I was hungry for lunch today but everything I thought of to make sounded blah.  I know!  Little bits of ice cream on Teddy Grahams!  Um…are you kidding, Michele!  That’s ridiculous!  Then the words of a Hawk Nelson song popped into my head, “They look at us like we’re ridiculous.  Maybe it’s all because of crazy love.”  Oh, yeah.  Jesus loves me with crazy love.  And I’m about to show how much I love Him by putting ice cream on Teddy Grahams for lunch.  I rinsed the ice cream down the drain.  Ups and downs but always moving forward.