Thursday, July 12, 2012

Struggling to Finish

In my younger, pre-child days, I used to love the heat. I would happily lace up my running shoes and hit the pavement at mid-day in search of a good sweat. Oh how I long for those days.

Lately it's been in the mid 80s by early morning when I start my runs. I stupidly dress in a cotton t-shirt (I'm changing that) and barely make it to the finish...sometimes I just cut my run short. It's frustrating. Especially since I've just started my marathon training. If I can't make it to 10 miles, how on EARTH am I going to log 26.2?!

On my run yesterday, I had a goal of 10. (The plan said 13, but I jumped into the plan without carefully assessing it, so I was tailoring it a bit.) We started off doing the first 5 miles on a nice shady trail. The temp wasn't terrible, but the humidity left us running in a cloud. I was drenched by mile 2. Miles 3 and 4 were on a trail full of larger rocks and muddy pits (it had POURED the night prior). It took every bit of effort to just finish that trail, but I did it and our mile splits were right on track....

Then we stopped for Weasel to take a potty break and drink some water. That's where it got ugly. Just starting to run again was painful. I'm not even sure how many times I stopped to take walking breaks! At mile 6.5, we passed our vehicles. It took an act of God to keep me from turning left and calling it a day, but we just kept running. We made the loop and arrived back at the cars at mile 9. I quit right then and there. I couldn't fathom running yet another mile. I was ANGRY with MYSELF.

But then I came home, stripped off my clothes that looked as if I had been swimming in them, and cooled down. It's just one run of many. There will be so many more that I can't let this one be the defining event of my training. I will switch to more breathable material. I will slow my pace at the beginning in hopes of maintaining my endurance to the end. I will NOT give up.

This is just my way of venting, so thanks for letting me do just that. Hope your training is going better:)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Not One of My Best...

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
Last Saturday, Stroller Warriors participated in the second race of the Have to Half series. It was brutally hot despite our early (7am) start, and I was thankful I hadn't signed up for the full race! Instead, I planned to log a short 7 with some friends. I lucked out and got the morning off from stroller duty while the Weasel slept in. 

The run started off ok. We tackled some hills for the first 2.5 miles and it wasn't terrible. I was running with my biking water bottle in hand as a test for some of my longer runs. Overall, it wasn't difficult to hold the bottle and run, but in the future, I think I'll look at different options. I've gotten so accustomed to running with the stroller and having a place for everything, that I am spoiled:)

We turned onto a nice shaded trail and took a quick break to say hello to some of the ladies manning the water station:

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
We kept a decent pace along the Greenway trail, but I was hurting and had gone a little quiet (typically I try to talk for most of the long runs I do). As we neared mile 6, I told the group I most definitely HAD to slow down, but urged them to go ahead. Naturally, they slowed their pace with me and just encouraged me along! I LOVE MY STROLLER WARRIORS! We took a short walk break and managed to finish out 7 miles, but it took every ounce of effort I could muster. I wasn't happy with the results, but it was over and I was thrilled.

Self-portraits I felt, and how I was trying to pretend I wasn't hating every minute of it!

In a hurry to get back to the weekend, I headed home without properly stretching...MISTAKE! I wasn't too sore after, but I know just taking 10 minutes to stretch would have made a world of difference. Then later in the day, I hopped back on Facebook and saw some awesomely inspiring stories from some of the ladies who had finished their first half marathons! I couldn't believe they had covered twice the distance with smiles on their faces! Here are some of the pictures from the event:

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
Hand towels on ice to cool down the runners...what a great idea!!

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
 One of the wacky ladies who created the Have to Half series! 

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
 Now this gal is inspiring! She's a mother of 3 who had 2 in tow during most of this race. She even stopped twice to nurse the baby!

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
 Mini Warriors out to show their support!

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
Leading the's Jane and Jen running as though it was a nice cool 60 degrees!

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
As if running a half marathon isn't difficult enough, try adding a double stroller...for the ENTIRE race. Go BRE!!

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
 Candice finishing her first half marathon! 

Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Harlow
Whitney and her husband tackling her first half! She did awesome!

If this doesn't inspire you to get over those bad runs and leave them in the past, I don't know what could!