Showing posts with label Goals. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Goals. Show all posts

Sunday, January 12, 2020

I Do Have a Few Goals for 2020

I really dislike sharing my goals. Putting it out there in the universe makes it seem so real, doesn't it? While I agree that telling people about my goals for myself helps me stay accountable, it also makes failure to achieve those goals that much more painful.

I learned that lesson with my first marathon in 2011. I signed up to run for charity, I posted it on Facebook, and I told everyone my plans. I even broke the cardinal rule of running a first marathon, which is to not set a goal finish time. The goal I should have set for myself, to cross that finish line, did happen, but not at all how I planned. In reality, I fell apart at mile 18 and ended up walking much of the rest of the race. It took me a long time to accept what happened at that race. 

I know a lot of you share your goals--some even give themselves grades on their progress towards achieving them. That's not me and for now, I'm going to keep this year's goals close to the vest. I'll keep you posted as I go.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Accept No Limits

This week, I continued to push out of the comfort zone and challenging any limits--physical or mental-- that have been holding me back from reaching some goals. I'm not sure what's behind all of this, but I have been having fun!

It's been a busy week and I apologize for my lack of posting. We've got my youngest leaving for college this week and lots of other things going on. Summer's like that. I'll be back to my regular blogging schedule after Labor Day.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone! This is my final weekly wrap and final blog post of 2017. Since I've already shared my year of bling, my blog stats, and my RA anniversary, what's left to talk about?

There is always the weather. If there is nothing else to talk about, there's always the weather.

We in the Chicago area are closing out the year with a blast--of really cold weather! It's been a tough, sole sucking week to be an outdoor runner and motivation is running low. Hibernating inside under a blanket is not the best way to kick off a new year of running, is it?

I did take myself for a run outside in the bitter cold on Saturday morning. After a torturous run on Wednesday on my geriatric treadmill, I couldn't bear the thought of another. Work on Friday was non-stop with really sick kids. Cabin fever was taking a toll. I was starting to feel anxious. So I bundled up and stepped out into the cold. The fresh air did help but it was a tough, cold four-mile run. How cold was it? It was so cold that my Garmin died 1 mile into my run. That was a first. How could I go on without my watch? Could I run "naked"? I considered going back home. Then I thought about Amanda "Too Tall Fritz" who was running a 50k that morning not far from my house and felt like a wimp. Where's my badassery? Where's my mental toughness?

As I thought about that, it occurred to me: It's a slippery slope, quitting on a short training run. I've got to get it together! I've got a half marathon in February to train for! Weather be damned! I'm going to have to suck it up and get outside. If I can run in these conditions, I can do anything. Right? I can do hard things! Mind over matter, can't stop won't stop, I can and I will. Quitting isn't an option. Right?

Friday, December 29, 2017

Runfessions: December

It's the last Friday of December which means it's time once again to runfess! Do you have anything to runfess? Or was your month uneventful and full of joy?

You guys know me well enough by now to expect plenty of runfessions. Good or bad, my life is never dull. It would be boring any other way!

So what do I have to 'fess?

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

New Year, New Dilemma: Why I'm Not Setting Running Goals This Year

One month ago, if you had asked me what I had planned for 2017, I would have told you that I had a marathon and a half marathon already on the calendar. That I had already talked to Becky about my marathon training plan. I wanted a similar plan to my 2014 Chicago plan, with twice weekly sessions including CrossFit intervals and strength training. Before we embarked on my marathon training plan, Becky had a strength cycle planned for me for January and February. Everything was going to fall into place.

I even confided in Marcia my super secret goal. I swore her to secrecy. I'm going to share it here because it's unlikely to happen: I had hoped to BQ at this year's marathon. I turn 55 this year, and my BQ time is now 4:10. My marathon PR from 2014 was 4:17. A 4:10 was totally within reach for me, if all the stars aligned and everything fell into place. As Marcia told me, I could do it if I learned to "find my gears" and hold back on my pace at the start of the race.

In the blink of an eye, all that has changed. I've done a lot of soul-searching over the past 3 weeks. I'm still planning on running those races, but no longer am I reaching for the stars.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

2016: The Year in Numbers

Happy New Year!

Wow. Can you believe it's the start of the new year? 2016 was a tumultuous year for many of us. You probably know how my year ended. I'm looking forward to the fresh start that the new year promises.

But it wouldn't be the new year without the yearly rewind! Because this is a running blog, I'm going to rewind my year in running! I've already recapped my year in bling. Today's post is all about the numbers. I'm also going to review the goals I set a year ago at this time. On Wednesday, I'll share my goals for 2017.

I was fairly surprised when I added up my miles for the year! So close to my yearly goal of hitting 1000 miles! That made me super happy. How did I do with the rest of my goals?

Friday, July 8, 2016

Revising My Fitness Goals for the Rest of the Year

Oh 2016, I had such big plans for you! I was going to travel and run all over you. Even though I started off the year with that pesky foot issue, I worked through it and got to the start lines of my 2 bucket listers, the Sarasota Half Marathon in March and the Big Sur Marathon in April. I returned home from California full of hope and ambition! I felt euphoric and fulfilled. I set my sights on a few half marathons for the rest of the year.

Naturally, fate had other plans for me. My son broke his leg and we got a new puppy. I could roll with that, but after a fall on a rock last week, my plantar fasciitis flared badly. It has yet to calm down. As you read this, I'm getting an x-ray and spending the morning with my sports medicine specialist. No matter what the outcome of that visit, it's clear to me that a revision of my goals for the year is in order.

What's a runner to do?

It isn't as if I haven't been in these shoes before. Literally and figuratively. Does it even matter what's wrong with my foot? No matter what the diagnosis, I'm still going to have to take some time off. Again. So I took a look at the goals I set for myself this year and made some alternative goals that will keep me in shape and ready to run once I can hit the road again.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

It's a Dilemma: What's a runner to do after she finishes a goal race?

What to do, what to do?

Do you ever feel lost after a big race or achieving a big goal?

No sooner did I cross the finish line at Big Sur did I receive a text from my coach Becky. "Send me your goals so I can work on a training plan for our upcoming sessions." Ok, it was the next day but still! I felt more anxious reading that than I did lining up for my race! Prior to Big Sur, I hadn't given my post-race plans much thought. After all, this was my lifetime running bucket list item, the race I always wanted to run. What kind of goal do you come up with after realizing a dream?

It's somewhat of a dilemma for this very goal-oriented runner.

Taking the Long Way Home

So 2 1/2 weeks later after that text from Becky, I'm still thinking about my goals for the rest of the year. I'm feeling pretty tired after training for 2 marathons in 6 months. I don't know how you back to back marathoners do it! But I won't lie. I have to admit that I still have Boston on my mind. I'd love to run it to make my marathon total an even 5. That can't happen, though, because in order to qualify, I have to run another marathon! Unless someone takes pity on me and gives me a free, completely legit entry!

Taking the Long Way Home
I may have to...
Ok. I'm thinking about that for the future. I don't plan on running another marathon this year. I want to give my PF a little more time to go away as I ease back into running. What I do plan on is running a few more half marathons! The half is still my favorite distance. Here's what I'm looking at:

Rock N Roll Chicago July 17. There aren't a lot of half marathons in Illinois or Wisconsin this time of year. It's usually as hot as hades in July in Chicago, which has kept this race off my list for a long time. But I need to work on my heat tolerance, and what better way to do that than to run a half in July? My friend Marcia is an ambassador, and I'd love to join her at this fun event. My goal for this race would be sub-2, which is something I've never done for a half in the summer or Florida.

Crystal Lake Half Marathon or Naperville Trails Half Marathon September 11. September and October offers a lot of choices for races around here. I had hoped to run the NorthFace Endurance Challenge half marathon in Kettle Moraine (Wisconsin) state park but the date doesn't work out for me. I'll make up my mind which race to run as the date approaches. If any of you local peeps are running either one of these, let me know.

Panama City Beach (Florida) half marathon December 3. Another destination race to add to my list, I'm going to run this race with a few blogging friends! This race offers me another opportunity to head back to the sugar sands of those Florida Gulf Coast beaches. It could be warm, though! No matter, though, this one's for fun.

While I filled her in on my running plans, Becky won't be training me for these races. Instead, I gave her some strength goals that I want to work on. She was pretty excited when I mentioned these:

  • Handstand unassisted. Looking at all those handstands on IG is giving me major FOMO. I'm strong and I know I can do it. I just have to get over my fear of falling. The New York Times feels my pain, publishing this article about this phenomenon just last week! One woman quoted in the article said that being able to handstand has made her "more confident, fearless and focused". It's like they know what I'm looking for. Becky wants to take it one step further and have me do a handstand push up. Ummm, sure. 
  • Climbing the rope. Hanging from the ceiling at CrossFit is a long, thick rope. When I first started working with Becky, she had me try to climb up, but I lacked the strength and confidence, much less the skills. I'm ready to tackle that bad boy again. 
  • Pull ups/chin ups. Traditionally, women struggle to do even one pull up. We just don't have the upper body strength compared to our male counterparts. But with the help of my coach, I'm going to try to defeat that stereotype. 

There's nothing earthshattering here. As much as I'd love to have another mind-blowing goal or dream to chase, going back to "normal" running and workouts feels good. Our goals don't always have to be big, right? They just have to be achievable. And fun. If it isn't fun, it isn't worth doing. That's always the goal.

Dilemma? I don't think so. 

Have you ever had trouble setting goals after accomplishing a dream? Do you always feel that you have to set goals?

I'm linking up with DebRuns for Wednesday Word. This week's word is dilemma.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Rewind, reset, renew

This new year, I set some goals.

Time to slow down. Enjoy life a little bit more.

Along with that, I set an intention to live more joyfully.

I figured that declaring it would make it happen. But it seems that life has different ideas.


It's only the beginning of the year,  but I'd like a do-over.

Is there a reset button? Can we do this thing again? Because things haven't started off so well.

Maybe it's me. Maybe my expectations were too high? I was so pumped about the way I ended last year. I hit that final mileage goal. I crushed all my other goals, save that BQ.


Feeling so positive, I was ready to tackle 2016 with arms wide open. Ready to restart, resume, and renew my training. I've got a marathon to train for.

I pulled out the mantras:
Good vibes only.
Don't stop believin'.
I can and I will.
I got this.

Instead, I wake up in a pool of sweat. Hot flashes, anyone?
Instead, I can not get my youngest out of bed for school.
Instead, it is school physical season v2.0.
Instead, an injury has sidelined me.
Instead of the cute ankle boots I ordered, I received a pair of size 11 Vans.

If I could rewind the last couple of days, I would.
Reset my expectations.
And renew my goals.
Reset my intention.

Let's do it. Here I go again:

I will welcome each day as a clean slate.
I will start each day with the intention of joy.
I will accept the things I cannot change.
I will be thankful for the little things that make me smile.
I will not take personally the people who treat me badly.
I will take charge of my happiness.
I will be positive.
I will run.

Good vibes only.
Don't stop believin'.
I can and I will.
I got this.
Just breathe.

Find joy in the journey.

How has your year started off? Are you tackling those goals?

I'm linking up with DebRuns for Wednesday Word. This week's word is renewal.

Friday, January 1, 2016

2016: Goals, Resolutions, and Intentions #AMRresolutions

Happy New Year everyone!

I've written a few posts recapping my year on the road and reviewing my goals from 2015. Now it's time to talk about my goals for 2016!

Dimity and Sarah from Another Mother Runner are once again hosting their annual declaration of running resolutions. Actually, they call them intentions. Being the goal oriented person that I am, I'm still all about making my resolutions, goals, intentions, or whatever you call them to be measurable and attainable. So here we go....

You may have already read my post a few weeks ago where I've declared 2016 to be my Year of the Destination Races! I shared some of my plans and ideas about how I'd like this to go down. How fun is this going to be? I'm not sure how my husband feels about this, but I'm both excited and nervous about what's to come. Dimity and Sarah say they want this to be about pushing out of our comfort zones. In that post, I wrote about that too.

Ok, then, I'm in.

If you look at the races I have picked already and the ones that I'm considering, there is one common theme here...these races are all about the experience. These are destination races, they are run on beautiful courses, and for me, are not about time goals. Or as I like to say, "it's about finish lines, not finish times!"

Yep, this year I'm going to try to tamp down my competitive urges and enjoy the ride.

Do you realize how hard this will be for me? I love to race and I love to run fast. I'm deliberately taking this year to try to slow down and breathe. I go at 150 mph from the moment I get up in the morning until I lay down to go to sleep. I thought you were supposed to mellow with age, but that hasn't happened to me yet. Can I make it happen? We'll see.

That's not to say I won't try to challenge myself at all this year. I mean come on, it's me we're talking about! I do love me some speed...

On with the goals...

My main goal for 2016 is to slow down and enjoy the ride.

What else do I want to accomplish in 2016?

Stay injury free. Can I have a repeat goal from 2015? Let's make it an ongoing goal. I'm going to continue to be smart about my training with low, meaningful mileage and lots of cross-training. That means for my spring marathon, speedwork on the treadmill and heat training...on the treadmill. For this race, I'll need to do some hill training too. I'll continue to work with Becky on strength training and whatever else she throws my way. It's been a formula for success. I'll also do yoga at least twice a week, once in the studio and the rest at home. I'm going to try to get on the bike at least once/week, weather permitting.

Be more mindful. As I said above, I go full speed every day, and I get overwhelmed pretty easily. There's too much multitasking in my life. Yesterday on my run, I turned around at the halfway point and headed back home. As I stepped gingerly over an icy patch on the path, I realized that I didn't even remember crossing it the first time. My bright yellow running shoes have a big brown mud spot on them now and I have no idea where the heck it came from! I have to work harder at staying in the present moment. This means slowing down and breathing. My family, friends, and co-workers would probably appreciate that too. This also means not attending to every message and text as soon as it comes in. Pranayama (breathing exercises) and mindful meditation. More yoga. Less media.

Meet up with blogging/running friends in real life! One of the best things that's come out of this blog is getting to meet all the fantastic people who I've gotten to know through blogging. If any of you reading this are going to be at a race that I'm planning on running please reach out to me. I love meeting my virtual friends!

Continue to grow the blog. I focused a lot of my energy on Facebook and Instagram this year, and was really rewarded with followers! So now it's time to learn more about Pinterest, which is a huge source of followers for a lot of bloggers. I still don't quite get how Pinterest works, and so I'm going to do some homework to figure out how it fits in with the blogging scheme. I've mostly been using it to store memes and recipes. My Pinterest boards make me look like a hoarder. Time to get organized.

No matter what I do this year, I'm still all about putting out quality content. I won't write just to make a sponsor happy. The blog will always be all me, all the time.


Finally, I wanted to make a comment about setting an intention. Most often at the beginning of yoga class the instructor asks students to set an intention, either for the class, for the day, or in general. Setting an intention isn't goal setting. An intention is more of a guiding principle for how you want to live or guide your life. The intention doesn't stop when you get off the mat. You should carry your intention with you throughout the day. Intentions are heart driven. Intentions can be broad--you might want to be a better person. Or maybe you want to become more kindhearted. By consciously setting an intention, you can actually turn your thoughts around. Kind of like using a mantra during a race.

For me, I've decided that I want to live more joyfully. At times, I find myself getting bogged down in negativity and I don't like the way that makes me feel. This will be a tough challenge, but it is something that I really want to change.

Yes, this is my oldest son at age 2!
If you need help with intention setting, here's a great article to get you started.

Have you set your goals for 2016? Do you ever set an intention? What is the one thing you want to accomplish in 2016?

I'm linking up with the DC Trifecta aka Courtney, Mar, and Cynthia for Friday Five! I'm sure there will a few resolutions, goals, and intentions over there...

And with Jill Conyers for her brand new Fitness, Health, and Happiness link up!

Tuesdays on the Run aka Marcia, Erika, and Patti are also hosting a link up for 2016 goals! Let's do this!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The 5 R's of vacation

Seen on the run...this sign was at the entrance to someone's driveway!
Being the goal oriented person that I am, I approached this vacation no differently than I do anything else in my life. I've made no secret of the struggles my family has endured the past couple of months, and I wanted more than anything to make this vacation a great trip for all of us. This was the first time that I was nervous about a family vacation. I had high hopes that all this family time would help us reconnect. There were 4 other things I wanted to accomplish with this time away: rest, relaxation, recharging, and of course, running. While initially we were all really tense, as a few days passed, it looked that the goals would be met. The trip ended on a really, really pleasant tone, and I think as family vacations go, this one was a success.

Stay with me here.  I know what you're thinking. "Oh geez, here goes Wendy sharing her vacation photos with us". This post isn't really a recap of my vacation. Because who wants to read about that, right? Being a running blogger and all, I wanted to share how it is possible and actually beneficial to stay active on a vacation even when you are away with your family. The benefits aren't just physical. The old saying, "the family that plays together, stays together" became an internal mantra for me this week. Staying active can be a challenge for some of us whose spouses are more--umm--sedentary. But find something that everyone likes to do and you can make it work. sunset photo
Rest: We didn't make many plans for this week. Time passed by the pool, catching some rays. My oldest son and my husband spent time fishing off the pier behind the house. Early to bed, early to rise. Walks to the beach, a short 2 blocks away, at sunset to watch Mother Nature perform her nightly ritual. When the boys were little, they used to complain: "not another sunset!" Now they know it's just something we do. And on the way home, there's an awesome ice cream shop. We stopped there twice. One night I had a scoop a couple scoops of salted caramel ice cream with hot fudge on top. When I ordered it, the guy behind the counter said, "oh yeah....!" Yep, those were my words too.

Relaxation: That goes without saying... the setting of an island vacation just begs relaxation.  My oldest son really gave me a tough time the first couple of days we were here. I guess I was being punished for making him go on vacation. He was sarcastic and indifferent, no matter what I said. As the week wore on, he began to thaw. After getting bit by the kayak bug last summer, I rented 2 kayaks for 3 of the days we stayed here. The house we stayed at is on a canal, and I thought it might be fun to explore the canals. It turned out to be the best thing I could have done. Not only did kayaking keep us active, it was a great way to spend time with my family. Between the fishing and the kayaking, my son started to relax, exchanging the attitude for laughter at my dad's bad jokes, and finally going shell seeking with me the last couple of days we were there. I also kayaked with my mom and my husband. We explored the canals and took the kayaks out to the intercoastal waterway. I wasn't brave enough to head out to Tampa Bay, but maybe next year?

Getting him to smile for a picture would have been pushing it....
Recharging: I also was off work the week before we came to Florida, and that helped put work out of my mind. I didn't realize how burnt out I was before having the time off, and I feel much better and ready to return to my responsibilities. I don't blog much about food, but I really ate well this week. Maybe a little too well! One reason I like to travel to Florida is the opportunity for fresh fish and produce. I wanted to have fresh fish every day and I was able to do that. Sometimes we go to the fish market and buy fish to prepare at the house, other times we eat out. I made Key Lime Pie a few times too. Had a beer with lunch every day and wine with dinner every night. It felt great to eat light foods after all the heavy foods we eat during winter. Even though we really indulged, we did so much kayaking and walking that I didn't feel guilty at all.

Feeling inspired by the great studio class I took that day..
Every year, I take at least one class at the yoga studio on the island, and this year was no exception. This instructor is really amazing, and her class is a treat. This was a gentle flow class, and after all the running I did this week, I felt great after we finished.

Running: We runners always joke about how much more we have to pack since we bring our running gear on vacation! My shoes saw 26 miles this week. Last year I struggled with the famous Florida humidity, but it was a non-factor for me this year. I really enjoyed my runs. I strive not to let my runs interfere with family time, and so I get up with the sun, drink some coffee, and head out. By the time I return, everyone is just waking up. Since I've come here before, I already have running routes plotted out. I know where the bathrooms and the drinking fountains are located. Running in a tropical paradise is an amazing experience. There's so much to see and look at. I am always amazed at all the beautiful homes lining the beach roads on this island. The lovely tropical birds flying overhead. Tourists riding in those bicycle calliopes built for 4. Trying to pick out who are the real runners and the ones who were inspired to try running for the first time because it seems like a good idea in a beautiful place. The clown that tried to run me off the road. Oh and that post run cool off...

Felt great!
I don't run along the beach, though. I tried that in the past, and between all the people you have to weave around and the uneven surfaces, I really hurt myself one year. I save the beach for relaxing. And snapping running selfies.

Doesn't it look like I just finished a great run on the beach?

Reconnect: To me, this was the most important goal of the entire week. Keeping active was the key for all of us to reconnect with each other. My youngest son spent the entire time in the pool, and my husband and I played football and volleyball with him. I really think the key to engaging with teenagers is to distract them with activities. I had the best conversations with both my boys while we were doing other things. I'm really grateful that I had this week away with them. I hope the momentum continues forward. I really do.

Until next year...

How do you stay active on family vacations?

I'm linking up with Tara at ReadingNRunning for her Weekend Update! Be sure to head on over to her blog and see what everyone else has been up to!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

#Run this Year 2015! February summary

Saw him this morning on my run. He may even have waved in solidarity...
For the Chicago area, this has been the coldest February and the snowiest February on record. I know other parts of the country have been affected too. My Facebook feed is full of posts from friends who are struggling to meet their running goals and/or train for races, including Boston. This winter has tested all our resolves. How did I do with my goals this month?

While I continued to train for what I hope is a sub-2 half marathon, the half marathon I'm training for has changed. Because of continued mama drama at my house, I pulled out of the Sarasota half marathon and cancelled the first half of my trip to Florida. This was a difficult and heartbreaking decision for me. I've had my eye on this race for 3 years. But putting my priorities in line was more important, and my son comes first. However, I didn't want to let all that training go to waste, and so I found a local half marathon on March 14, the same weekend as Sarasota. The silver lining is that 2 of my friends, my tribe, were planning on running it, and so I'll be in good company. I've got Sara riding down with me to keep me company. I won't lie, though, I'm certainly not as excited about this one as I was about Sarasota. Maybe next year...

I've got the weight of the world on my shoulders or at least it seems like it....still sore 3 days later...
Anyways, my training continues to be a bright spot in what was otherwise a challenging month for me. Becky and I completed my heavy lifting cycle and now she has had me doing CrossFit intervals. Lots of burpees (my nemesis) and time on the rower. The hardest thing she's had me do was lunges with a 50# sack of shit  something on my shoulders. As I write this, I'm still feeling pain in my glutes. My foam roller and I have been inseparable the last couple of days. But I'm not complaining. My mile splits on all my runs have been fast, my hamstrings have been cooperative, and I've been finishing my runs with a smile on my face, even in spite of the cold.

Lots of snoga this month. Half moon on the run.
For the month of February, I also participated in the #TaketheLeap 30 day yoga challenge. Similar to a running streak, I've done and posted a yoga pose every day. This has been really fun for me, and it's been nice to see the pictures of myself in various poses, since I never have seen myself doing yoga. Some are prettier than others... Some of my friends want to continue the streak, but it has been challenging at times to get the poses in and posted, and so I'm on the fence. I found another yoga challenge,  this one on instagram, 30d of handstand prep, sponsored by Alo, and that might be kind of fun. I will continue with my weekly yoga session though.

The blog continues to grow! This month I received news that I was accepted as an ambassador for Girls Gone Sporty! And even better news, I was contacted by The Active Times to be a featured blogger and maybe write some articles for them. I'm so excited about this opportunity. I also was featured on Another Mother Runner--not once but twice, once for a story I submitted about breaking up with a unwanted running partner and for my frosty running selfie that I posted in one of their weekly piles of miles posts on Facebook. Writing is my passion, and I'm really thrilled to have all these opportunities coming my way. I also launched the Taking the Long Way Home Book Club and am really happy about the response. The linkup will go live March 14. Have you picked up the book yet? Click on the link to learn more.

My boys and me. Hoping for some more magical sunsets on our trip this year.
But in spite of all this good news and good running and good training has been the black cloud of the mama drama looming over me. I've written a little bit about it, actually, I write about it almost every time I post because it's always on my mind. He's on my mind at work, when I see new parents with their infants and I think about all the dreams they have for their child. I think about him when parents of toddlers share their struggles with me--oh, I'd go back to those days in a heartbeat. I look at him and my heart just breaks. Do you know that feeling? As mad as I get at him (and let's just say those slam balls Becky gives me to do are therapeutic), I just love him all the more. All I have to say is that raising teenagers is tough. Some kids are easy and just move through adolescence without any major issues. And others struggle...with self esteem, acceptance, trying to find their place in this very challenging world. As his parents, my hubs and I continue to take this challenge day by day, and stay optimistic that he will find his frontal lobe and start thinking logically. Either that, or I'm going to call the neurosurgeon and see if he's willing to do a transplant...

Goals met. Miles total 102; YTD 209

So that's February! Overall, it's been a productive month. I'm hoping for a PR in 2 weeks...and then we head to the beach for some R and R and R. Rest, relaxation, and running!

How was your month? How are you doing on your goals?

I'm linking this post up with Tara at ReadingNRunning for her Weekend Update. I'm looking forward to reading her LR Marathon Race Report! Head on over and check it out.

Monday, February 23, 2015


When everything hits the proverbial fan, it takes every ounce of resolve I have to lace up my running shoes, head out the door and go for a run. I actually consider just going back to bed and pulling the covers up over my head. Have you ever felt like that? It's a slippery slope towards depression, and I don't want to go there. After all, that's one of the reasons I started running 20 plus years ago. And that in and of itself is my biggest motivator to get out the door.

What else do I do to motivate myself to run?

If you don't want to race or if you need more goals, you can stay accountable by signing up for a virtual race or group. In 2015, I signed up with Run This Year. While no longer in operation, the goal of Run This Year was accountability. I always have a loose goal of running 100 miles per month, and I set a goal to run 2015 km in 2015 (which translates to 1251 miles. The organizers,had Instagram contests to keep participants motivated. They also encouraged participants to print out bibs every 100 miles and post a picture to the website. At the end of the year, I met my goal. What a great feeling!

Reading about running can be motivating! Shameless plug: as you may or may not know, I'm hosting a running book club right here on the blog! This is a great chance to read books that you might never have considered picking up! You can read more about the book club here. And if you are one of those people who don't read books--I don't understand you but I know you're out there--you can read magazines about running. There's a ton of websites with articles about running. And I know a few awesome blogs about running. Obviously, you do too....

Connect with other runners via social media. I cannot say enough how much having my virtual running friends helped me train for a successful Chicago Marathon last fall. It takes a village to train a runner, apparently. Just ask Jenny Hadfield! If you are a social runner, find a running group in your community. Be with your people. They get you and if your mojo is flagging, they can help you find it. I get by with a little help from my friends.

Adopt a mantra. I continue to use my "I can and I will" mantra to not only get me through my training but also through my mama drama. It sounds corny, but it really works. Music gets me moving too, and I've written plenty about how listening to motivating lyrics can really push me through a tough run. Some of my friends listen to podcasts.

I feel like the Yeti these days!
While it might seem superficial to some, having cute (or if you're a guy, cool) running clothes really is a great pick me up. You don't have to spend a lot of money to get some fun things to wear. TJMaxx and Marshall's is a great source of inexpensive, name brand gear. Target's C9 brand is high quality and fashion forward. Old Navy is another great source for cute running clothes. There are plenty of other options, but as they say, you don't have to spend a lot to look good. Sometimes just buying a few new items is enough to perk up even the most depressed winter runner. Clearly, though, I've been following this advice a little too closely. But do you want to be that runner wearing inappropriate clothing? I didn't think so.

How do you find your mojo?

Monday, February 9, 2015

Hung over

At the beginning of this year, I set five goals for myself. I've talked about them quite a bit on the blog. Goals are important because it gives us something to strive for. Four of those goals were running related. One was not exactly running related. That goal was to manage the mama drama in my life. But we all know how much that mama drama affects our running. And vice versa.

Spinal Tap
That goal, the keeping the mama drama in check goal, was sorely tested this weekend. The mama drama-o-meter was off the chart. Up to eleven. Saturday night was a sleepless night. And Sunday was rough. Have you experienced a hangover after a night of partying? That's small potatoes compared to how I felt Sunday. I felt sick all day. My son, obviously feeling the fallout as well, took off early in the day. He said he needed "to chill". I spent most of the day agonizing over him leaving and wondering where he was. I sent him occasional text messages, just to check in and let him know I was thinking about him.

As the day went on, something changed. I don't know exactly how it happened but he and I began exchanging text messages. And through these text messages, we shared a lot. A lot. He told me things no mom ever wants to hear. Confirmation of things that I was already suspicious of. I told him how much I loved him and wanted to help him. We texted all afternoon. And the upshot? We're both taking the day off today to get some help for him.

When he came home tonight, I hugged him. And he let me. I can't remember the last time I held him in my arms. My 17 year old baby boy hugged me back. I asked him if he was still on board with the plan for help. He said yes.

Sunday morning, even though I was exhausted after my sleepless night, I went for a run. It was one of those "I need a run" runs. When I got back, I told my husband that for that 50 minutes I was on the path, I didn't think a whole lot about my son and the events of Saturday night. Instead, I got to think about running, lose myself in my music, and be free from my life. I listened to my footfalls and reflected in the ease of my stride. That day, more than ever, I was thankful for the run.

I can't predict what today will bring, or the next day. I have a feeling my family is in for a rough road for a while. While I have no control over the mama drama in my life, I have control over how I manage it. And the one thing I'll have to help me through the mama drama ahead is the run.

I'm linking up with Tara at RunningN'Reading today.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Run this Year! 2015 January summary

How's your training been going since the new year? I have to admit that I have never been really diligent about keeping track of my miles until I got my Garmin last year. Now it's kind of fun to log in and see where I'm at. For 2015, I signed up with Run This Year, to participate in a community of runners and to see if I could achieve a yearly goal of--no, not 2015 miles, but 2015 kilometers. That's 1252 miles, y'all. I think this is something I can do--if I accomplish what I set out to do this year--stay injury free. So where am I at on my 2015 goals so far?

Staying injury free? I'm all about avoiding any time off the road this year. At the end of 2014, I was having big time issues with shin splints and high hamstring pain on the right. I've been working hard with Becky at CrossFit again. I don't know if she didn't hear me when I talked about my pains or if she was ignoring me. She just kept pushing me through my workouts. We finished up a cycle of heavy lifting, which we started at the end of 2014, with 2 PRs! Deadlift PR= 175# and Box Squat PR=155#. Now we are in a cycle of CrossFit intervals and wow! are they intense. But I'm happy to report that the pains I had at the start of the month are gone. Now I have a little achilles pain, but it comes and goes, usually after a run. I'm working diligently on foam rolling, stretching, and hip strengthening at home, as well as yoga 1-2 times per week. 

Deadlift PR!
Run a sub-4 hour marathon/sub-2 half marathon? I'm lumping these together, since I'm not planning on a marathon until fall. I started training for my March half marathon, the Sarasota Half Marathon. Since the race is in Florida, I have absolutely no way to train for the heat I may encounter. Or do I? Remember last year's Florida half that I ran? In the 75F 90% humidity? Where I wilted at mile 4? I have no desire to repeat that experience. So I talked to a seasoned marathoner that I know, and he told me really, the only way to train is to run inside and wear lots of clothes. So that's what I've been doing. I call it a "paced heat run", and it's tough! Every week I add more layers. This past week was the toughest, as I piled on fleece lined tights, a fleece hooded sweatshirt, and a hat. These runs are for one hour and I try my hardest to maintain a steady pace. I did pretty well until mile 4, when I had to slow it down just a little. But I still averaged 9:14 min/mi--I think. My treadmill isn't that accurate. But I'll take it. I've also started doing speedwork, in the form of mile repeats, and that's been going well too. It's hard to pace my miles on this treadmill, since I really don't know how fast I'm going. As long as I end up going faster on the last mile, that's all that counts. 

Yep, this is indoors running at its best!
And about that mama drama? Oh, that oldest son of mine. He tries so hard to get me going. Sometimes he does. I'm trying not to let it happen. Even when he gets a terrible report card. His response? "At least I'm not failing anything..." I've decided to back off and see what happens. Because, as I said in the previous blog post, his bad grades really don't affect me, per se. We all want our kids to do well in school but he's going to have to deal with the consequences, not me. I know I'm not alone here. Why can't they stay little?

This guy is now 17! It was so much easier when I could just strap him in the jogger and go!

Grow the blog? Things have taken off beyond my wildest dreams! I found out this month that I've been chosen to be a #Fitfluential ambassador and a #SweatPink ambassador! I couldn't be more excited and admittedly, more overwhelmed! There's so many opportunities to interact with other bloggers...opportunities for affiliating with advertisers and companies...participation in fitness campaigns...I'm just trying to sort through everything and decide what I want to do. One thing I don't want to do is lose my voice, and so I want to be really careful about what I pick. I started blogging to interact with other runners, and that desire still drives me! And in the when it rains it pours when it snows, make snow angels department, I was also featured on Another Mother Runner this month, sharing a story I about when one of my neighbors decided he wanted to run with me. It was kind of an ugly break up. It's all good, and all I can say is wow! and thanks for following along. I'm excited about what's to come! 

107.19 miles

I'm linking this post with Tara at RunningNReading for her Weekend Update!