Saturday, November 5, 2022

I Had a Plan

So...remember that 2 weeks ago, I agonized over DNSing a half marathon? I even runfessed about it? Well, I have one more runfession regarding this race. Besides all the excuses I shared, I runfess... that I knew I needed 14 miles to finish the Mammoth Trail Challenge, so I decided to use my training to finish that instead. It's crazy how my priorities have changed. There's no medal for this event, I get a patch. It doesn't even matter. For me, it's all about that feeling of finishing something that means something to me.  

And no more runfessions about that race. I promise.

Weekly Rundown
Sunday: Ice Age Trail run 14 miles
Monday: CrossFit
Tuesday: pool running
Wednesday: 'trail' run 5 miles
Thursday: strength training
Friday: 6 miles
Saturday: rest

October miles: 96.5!

Running

Even though I had 10 'bonus' miles I could use to complete the Mammoth Challenge, leaving me with only 4 miles to run, I wanted to complete the full 42 miles on trail. If you know me, this should not surprise you. So I studied the trail maps and decided to go to Whitewater to run the Blackhawk segment, a 7 mile out and back. I woke up early and left the house at 6:45, hoping to start by 8. I witnessed a beautiful sunrise and took it as a good omen. I loved this segment--from the park-like setting along Lake Lagrange, to the typical rocky, rooty ups and downs through the ravines,  and through the piney woods of the Kettle Moraine National forest. I bit the dirt once when something mysterious caught my toe, but otherwise, this was a fun, uneventful run. I felt really strong thanks to that unused training. I'll share a full recap of the challenge on Tuesday!



The weather was gorgeous on Wednesday, but after my 14 miles on single track on Sunday, I made the choice to do a kinder, gentler trail run at a local preserve. I use the term 'trail' loosely for this place because the trails are packed limestone. I made the mistake of wearing trail shoes and yeah, road shoes would have been a better option. I really don't like running at this preserve--when the county renovated it, they removed most of the trees and it's wide open. Not my kind of trails and the run was meh--not sure if it was my attitude or if I was still fatigued from Sunday's run. I won't go back there for a while.


On Friday, I took off in the dark wearing my RunVisible tank and shorts. What? It was 65 degrees! I was shocked to not see any other runners for the first half of my run. It was a little unnerving. When I entered the tunnel, I was surprised to see my running friends heading toward me! We stopped to chitchat and after I convinced them to hold my phone so I could have a video of me running in the tunnel, they went on their way. On my way back, I didn't get to see a sunrise, just red streaky clouds, a sign of the rain and storms that were forecast to head our way. This was a really nice run and I'm so glad I had it because my day at work was insane. Again.

CrossFit/Strength

I was really wiped out after Sunday's trail run but I wanted to do the WOD on Monday and I'm so glad I did! The strength portion had pull-ups, 3 sets at max, which I did banded using a loose band. After that, we did strict presses, 3 sets of 10 @60-65% (I did 40#). For the MetCon, we did something called 'The Gross Ghost", 4 rounds for reps: 1 minute each of bike calories, burpees, double under (I did singles), and rest. My total was 479 total reps for everything.

On Thursday, I woke up achy. Hoping to ward off an RA flare, I took some ibuprofen and got ready for my strength sesh with SJ. I took my time warming up and it paid off with some strong work--4 sets of 10 back squats at 95#!! I alternated those with dumbbell chest flys 4 sets of 8 with 12# each hand and those hip flexor leg lifts over a KB. I was already feeling those squats around lunchtime!!!


Body Positivity

I shared some thoughts on an IG post this week about feeling self-conscious about my body, especially my abdomen. I've always felt this way--I was never a fan of wearing a bikini, even when I was a teenager. I don't know where it comes from, but I will share that while growing up, my sisters used to tease me that I was fat (I wasn't) because I didn't have a flat stomach. My grandpa called me 'thick'. My mom even put me on a diet while I was going through puberty--and I weighed 120#! That stuff really messes with you and even though I've moved past it, those messages have stayed with me. Now that I'm older, my stomach is wrinkled--sigh... 

So when I received a crop top in my last shipment of gear from Brooks, I wasn't planning on wearing it. Besides the issue I have with showing my stomach, I worried that maybe I was too old to pull this one off. Would people make fun of me? That top has sat on my dresser, taunting me. I finally decided to get over myself and wear it with the matching tights to my strength session this week. Thank goodness they are high-waisted, lol. 

I knew Sammy Jo would make me feel good about it. She and I both have talked about our body image issues at length. On Thursday, before I even said anything, she complimented me on the outfit, telling me how cute it was. I shared my insecurities with her. She gets it. I had a great workout. I still couldn't let go of feeling self-conscious about it, but yeah, it was a big step forward for me.

I wasn't looking for compliments or affirmation in that IG post, even though the responses were definitely supportive. It's amazing how many of us share body insecurity, even though we are runners and athletes. We should celebrate that! It's hard for me to let go of the idea that a woman should be young, thin, and fit. Aging has definitely thrown a curve ball at me. I am a work in progress.

How was your week? Did you complete any challenges this week, official or ones you set for yourself? Did you enjoy any beautiful weather? Is there a place where you just don't enjoy running? How do you feel about the way you look?

I'm linking up with Deborah and Kim for the Weekly Rundown. 


29 comments :

  1. I had and have many of those same thoughts about my body. That tank is sitting in my drawer and maybe I will get the courage to wear it one day. When I feel bad about my abs, I try to remind myself that is the part of me that created my 2 beautiful babies. Good for you for wearing it and kicking ass in it. Nice job on finishing your challenge!

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    1. I remind myself of the same thing, it's shocking to see what has happened to the skin since menopause! I'm glad that the top and pants leave a very small gap of skin. LOL

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  2. I feel the same about crop tops. But I am older and I think you looked great in yours.

    Congrats on the challenge. Your goal is your goal. And you accomplished it.

    The weather has been great... I enjoyed the last of the after work walks/hikes.

    I do like to run in my neighborhood. I prefer biking paths.

    I contemplate giving up the skirt and tanks due to sagging skin but hey, they're comfortable... I do cringe when I look at pics of myself.

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    1. Really? I think you look amazing! I guess we are all our own worst critics.

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  3. Great job knocking-out those final 14 miles! I can relate to the body image stuff. My abs are a bit of a nemesis for me as well. They definitely aren't as defined as I'd like them to be, but I'm not giving up butter, bread or cheese from my diet. That said, they did house my three kiddos, and they shrunk back for the most part, LOL

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    1. It's so interesting to read all the responses to my post, We're all putting it out there and yet body insecurity is pervasive among all of us! I am in good company and so glad for all the dialogue around this topic.

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  4. So first off, and I'm saying this in all honesty, I think you look GREAT. You're one of my biggest sources of inspiration- the strength training you do is amazing and it's one of the things that's encouraging me to get back to the gym and start lifting heavier. About the stomach- I'm right there with you. I know I look "thin" but I've never had a flat stomach. In recent years it's become, ahem, even less flat shall we say- to the point where buttoning my pants is really uncomfortable. At the same time, the heat has been bothering me more and more, and it feels so much better to run in a cropped tank (or just a sports bra.) I really had to set my ego aside and go for comfort rather than looks. So I say- embrace it. You're doing things most 20-year-olds can't, so you can wear whatever you want!

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    1. I think you look great! I wish i had the confidence to rock a sports bra but that's just not going to happen. Then there's the whole aging thing and am I trying too hard to look young? Sheesh.

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  5. As I've aged I've come to realize that everyone has issues and everyone is wrapped up in their own stuff so they're likely not noticing others and if they're judging others, eff em. I'm glad you wore the crop. I definitely give more thought now to what is "age appropriate" for me but at the end of the day I think we should all wear whatever we feel amazing in. Nice work completing that challenge!

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    1. As always, you hit the nail on the head! After returning from Run Happy camp, I definitely feel a little 'old' and sensitive about it!

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  6. Well done on rocking the crop top! I have a super swimming costume now that's a one-piece with shorts and a flap of material across from top to below the waist and I love it. I was teased for being fat and grew up in an unpleasant atmosphere around girls' and women's bodies; I have worn a bikini in my 30s but just don't fancy that now. I have been in shorts in the sun recently though, which was quite a big deal for me, as I'm convinced my leg length disparity is visible (it only is to other people with the same thing, I'm sure) so hardly ever dig out shorts. Sill really as I have a body that (basically) works and I should just be proud to move that around.

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    1. 100% agree with you Liz and it's so superficial I can't believe i even shared it. I think that I've been feeling a little sensitive lately with regards to aging.

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    2. I'm glad you shared it as it's good to know other people get sensitive about this stuff, too!

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  7. For me it's truly about time in nature. Heck, I forget to take a "Medal Monday" photo with my medal, even though I had the national park at my beck & call!

    You know I struggle with my body, but I have been very overweight much of my life. Something I was going to write about next month is the fact that I gained about 5 lbs this Summer -- and it's hardly as though I pig out or have a terrible diet. I'm kind of hoping it was actually due to training for the half, but I don't think so. Well, let's just say I have more to say on that subject at some point -- and yes, I was teased for being fat (even before I really was) and also had some parent issues around my weight. Too long a story for this post!

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    1. I've done pretty well dealing with my body image issues but the last couple of years since menopause have really shaken my confidence. Funny how those childhood messages are rooted so deeply!

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  8. Wendy, you look amazing and you are so strong, but I get exactly where you are coming from. I ran in shorts and jog bras for years until my early 50's when I suddenly had saggy skin that I was sure no one wanted to see. Too many of us compare ourselves to other women (or our younger selves), and as Teddy Roosevelt said, "Comparison is the thief of joy."

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    1. In this instance, I'm not comparing myself to anyone. I'm pretty sure no one needs to see my wrinkly belly. Short of a tummy tuck, there's not much else i can do about it!

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  9. Totally understand what you mean about the feeling of accomplishment - that's a huge motivator for me too.

    I absolutely love that you rocked the crop top! Sometimes we can talk so negative to ourselves so it's always nice to silence that voice in our heads when we can.

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    1. I wasn't able to completely silence that doubt but I do feel better about it!

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  10. That trail along Lake Lagrange looks beautiful! Looking forward to your Mammoth Challenge recap on Tuesday.

    It's comforting to me to see that others have the same body issues. Maybe we are all more sensitive about the way we look because we are fitness bloggers who train their bodies (and take photos)?
    Sammy Jo is right, you do look great in that outfit! I hope that crop top will be a regular feature.

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    1. Or are we athletic because we are more sensitive about the way we look? I can say that running and fitness have definitely helped my self-image!

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  11. Glad you made a decision you're happy with, you just can't do everything; none of us can. As we mature we get wiser I think and make decisions differently. Love the look of contempment I see on your face as you wave and as you're coming through the tunnel. Left, right, and repeat!! Congrats to you.
    Sandy's Space

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    1. That was a really good run! I swear, they come out of nowhere.

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  12. Crop tops are a little scary, right? Well, they are for me. The past year I've been seeing a lot of skin parts on me I don't care for. Not much I can do about it though, so I'm just going with it. Running a marathon recently in a crop top was a huge leap for me. In the end, no one really cared (even though I thought they would!). Glad you wore that crop - you are strong and amazing!

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    1. I love what you said about skin parts, lol! It's so true! no matter how fit we are, we can't fight the march of time. Yeah, not running in a crop top. But I'll definitely wear it to the gym.

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  13. First of all, you look amazing. And so strong. But I understand image issues, and I'm proud of you for being brave. Secondly, way to get it done with finishing your goal! That's so huge!

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  14. I love the #sportsbrasquad movement, even though I'm not likely to join it these days. I need a shirt to protect my skin from Scooby's leash. I also wear a shirt at my office gym and hotel gyms, because it's awkward enough running into someone from work when I'm a sweaty mess -- they don't need to see that much skin.

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