Since I am preserving my return to running for posterity, I felt compelled to document my monthly achievements. Welcome to my January Run Down. Yes, it is February 13th and yes, I procrastinated like a mofo…so here we go…
I began running again in the beginning of January. I had not run since the Virginia Beach Rock n Roll Half Marathon labor day weekend. I was incredibly happy with my performance at the Half and was walking…slightly limping…on cloud 9. I finished mid-pack and ran faster than I expected. But my training had been sluggish and I suffered the consequences within hours. Previously, I had run the CoDel Half Marathon with also dismal training preparation and my body was pissed. My walking was extremely limited and I decided to take a week off.
My week off turned into several months, but with a new year, I felt a new inspiration to return to running. My furry bestie was getting a little chubby and so was I. We decided to reenter the running world. My expectations were completely delusional. I believed I would be returning to my previous running glory within days. Rufus did, I did not.
My first week back, I ran 2 days at 2 miles each…they were slow as molasses and included tons of walking breaks. I was amazed that I was running so poorly. I decided to do two things. First, I renewed my connection to a local running club. Second, I started reading voraciously about all things running.
I was already a member of two awesome running clubs. I began my running adventure with the Ocean City Running Club. As a beginner, they were amazing motivators and an indispensable support system. The club ran and still runs two runs a week for all paces. I met my running mentor, Lauren, in this club. Lauren made me the runner I am today, always enthusiastic, honest and encouraging, available for endless questions at all times of the day. I am forever grateful for them, but as I lived 45 minutes away, OCRC runs were not as convenient as before. Luckily, last summer I joined the Eastern Shore Running Club and while I previously joined the group runs for a grand total of 1 time…I Facebook stalked them and learned they were beginning a new weekly run designed for the slower/beginner runner…I was hooked. Committing to weekly runs are still a little tricky with little ones, but I hope to bring MiniMe to at least a few runs.
Running Clubs are an excellent way to enter the running community. I have never met a rude Club…well, once, there was this lady and she was really mad at us because we ended a race 2 miles early…but in our defense we did not go through the chip mat and told on ourselves to be removed from timing…but besides that, Running Clubs are inspirational warm groups that want to support you to be the best runner you can be. And if you are anything like me, running with others forces you to compete, even if nobody else knows. I want to show them what an amazing runner I am and therefore, attempt to cover all external signs that I am a hot, wheezing mess. Simply, the running community is fun. Originally, I was worried they would immediately identify me as a sub par runner, but my fears were quickly eliminated. Only once has a fellow runner called me a jogger…and I prayed for her and whispered, “I am a runner” under my breath…and in her defense, she was part of our group of girls who were running the Ragnar and she was concerned that I would not perform well…yeah, she sucks…moving on! Running Clubs also support or host running events throughout the community which is a great way to slide into races.
I read Runner World’s 7 Secrets to Making a Comeback and quickly realized I was right on track. They, whoever they are, say we are our worst critics, and that is definitely true for me. Running and walking have stayed consistently part of my new running protocol. I happily report that my running now outweighs my walking. I actually enjoyed my most recent run, thinking of dying a slow death only once. I also realized that if I am returning to the world of running, then I need to reenter the world of cross training.
To achieve my cross training goal, I have begun the daily routine of bathroom cardio. This is a great way to get up throughout the day and confuse my coworkers when I come out of the bathroom breathing heavy. Each time I am inclined to use the ladies, I do 25 squats, 25 push-ups against the grab bar (please do not do full push-ups on the bathroom floor) and 25 leg lifts. I already feel the burn in my bum. In the interest of expanding my horizon and my body’s capabilities, I committed myself to a new yoga practice. This was also something that went to the wayside before. I downloaded a great yoga app, Yoga Daily, which allows me to pick a program that focuses on a certain goal, reminding me what days I need to complete the challenges. I am currently enrolled in the flexibility program. Also, I downloaded Asana Rebel, which is incredibly challenging and forces me to push further. When I want to watch a video for inspiration, I love Boho Beautiful. This couple inspires me with their wanderlust and peaceful flows. I hope to join a yoga studio at some point, but work, school, children…life, in general, has been capitalizing most of my time. That may be an easy excuse, and the true answer may be that I just don’t wanna right now…
I ran approximately 27 miles in the month of January. I also signed up for two big races that are fast approaching on the Horizon – The CoDel Half Marathon/April 23rd (68 days and counting) and the Tim Kennard 10 Mile River Run/March 5th, which is not enough days away (20 days). I created a training plan that incorporates both races. I will share more details about the trials and tribulations of my training plan soon!