Sun. 11/21: Betcha thought I wasn’t blogging anymore, didn’t ya?! Well, I’m back and with LOTS of interesting news since the last time I wrote. I have taken several steps towards my marathon goal. First off, I am happy to say that on Nov. 13th, I ran 4.8 miles on my own and then 9.9 miles with a new friend and her friend. And no, this isn’t the Sports Dr.’s wife. I never heard from her so maybe he forgot to tell her. I met my new friend through another friend of mine. And (bonus), she happens to live in my neighborhood too, so I am hoping to be able to run some more with her in the future. She and her friend are running the Thanksgiving ½ marathon in Atlanta so this was the last long run they are doing before their big race. When I ran that day, my mileage was broken up- I ran the 4.8 miles at the local park I have been running at and then I met them at nearby neighborhood and ran the 9.9 miles with them. I was a little bummed that it wasn’t consecutive and that I didn’t get exactly 15 miles in, but hey, I came really close and I am confident I could have done the remaining .3 without problem. I also went straight from the park to meet up to run the remaining miles that I did, so there was maybe a ½ hour at the most that I was not running between the two runs. All in all, I was glad I was able to do it and that my IT band wasn’t bothering during or afterwards. I was so happy with myself that after I got home and rested and settled, I went online and I made my marathon goal official. I signed up for the Disney 2011 marathon which is on January 9th. Hubby and I have decided not to take “the boy” with us for this little adventure. It kills me not to take our little 4 year old. He’s never been there before. But, due to many factors including cost, length of the drive and the EARLY morning start of the race, (5:40 am- YIKES! What was Mickey thinking???), it is just better that we make Disney a reality for him another time when the focus will be all on him and not a race. But wait. There’s more… Hubby and I have a friend who is a real theme park aficionado and he is going with us! He knows Disney inside and out and even used to work there. He has done the ½ marathon there twice so he knows the layout and has told me lots of things that Disney does along the way to make it fun. He’ll be there to help hubby navigate the course and he’ll also be a big cheerleader for me as well. I am SO EXCITED that he is coming with us! He is the perfect person to be on this journey to the finishline. It will be like having our own personal Disney tour guide with the added bonus that I will have another person there to root for me who is just as excited as I am that I am going to run this. Truly, I feel like God is just working this whole thing out for me because I don’t know if I would have been as enthusiastic if it weren’t for all the help I’ve had along the way. I still think back to my ½ marathon and how “Phil” showed up right when he did. My angle out of nowhere. Now the ½ marathon seems so many miles ago… Mon. 11/15: I went to the see the P/T that the Sports Dr. recommended. In talking to him at length about my IT band and lower back pain, I learned that some of my pain could have been avoided had I been stretching regularly. I told him that what he was telling me conflicted with what Jeff Galloway’s marathon training book had said and that I had been afraid to stretch because of fear of causing injury to myself- like Jeff’s book had mentioned. What the P/T told me (and it made sense) is that muscles need to stretch or they will become very tight. Kind of like a rubber band that has no give. He said that Jeff Galloway must already be pretty flexible, but for those of us that aren’t, we need to loosen those muscles up so they don’t tighten up on us. He said that I could do my stretching well before running, as long as I was making sure to stretch consistently. He said that it would help relieve the pain I had been having along with making it easier for me to run because my body will be more flexible. It made total sense to me so I guess I am going to start giving this stretching thing a try. Maybe not right before a race, but surely during my downtime. Thurs. 11/18: I did the usual elliptical bike at the gym for about 30 minutes. Nothing exciting, but just trying to maintain a routine. I have not been running during the week. My friend with the dog has been busy and then out of town and I haven’t been enthused enough to go it alone. My weekday training has become pretty much nothing except the occasional walk on the hills in the neighborhood with friends or doing the elliptical bike at the gym. Fri. 11/19: I went walking the hills with a friend of mine in the neighborhood. We went for about an hour, I think. It was good to get out. Sun. 11/21: Hubby drove me to ‘the greenway” to run. I had it in my head that I needed to run 18 miles this afternoon. I couldn’t find anyone to even do a partial run with me so I had to go it alone. Rather than go back to the same park I usually go to and run the 1.2 mile loop over and over and over again (BORING), hubby convinced me to try the greenway. When I first got out there I was pretty agitated. The paths were not clearly marked, there were mile markers all over in every direction and no maps clearly posted. I had no idea where to start or where I’d end up. It was a nightmare. I decided to just run and go wherever the wind took me since paths seemed to appear all over the place. Hubby and “the boy” met up with me an hour later- somehow I found my way back to the same area that I started in. We agreed that I would continue running until 6pm when it got dark and I would meet them back where I started. So, from 2:30pm until 6pm, I ran and ran and ran and ran. I took a few short walk breaks and two bathroom breaks. Although I had no way of knowing exactly how many miles I did, I do know that my average has been 1 mile every 10 minutes. I gave myself a little wiggle room by running an extra half hour for a total of 3 ½ hours. So, I know I ran at least 18 miles and possibly up to 20. I DID IT! When I finished, I was definitely tired, but my IT band felt good. My upper and lower back was a bit sore, but I was able to walk without limping. My hips felt pretty good and I could tell that I must have had much better form this time around. All of my Chiropractic massages and P/T is paying off! As a treat, hubby took all of us to eat pizza for dinner. Gotta love those carbs! During the run, I drank 40 oz. of water (I have a runner’s belt with two 10 oz water bottles attached that I refilled once empty) and I had one package of Gu Chomps and one Gu Energy Gel pak for endurance. I highly recommend the Gu Chomps. They taste so much better than the Power Bars and the Gu Gel. I will definitely be using those for the marathon. The only thing I keep wishing I had was one of those Garmen Forerunner 305 watch that calculates the exact distance of a run, calories burned, speed, heart rate, time etc… They are way more accurate than any pedometer and you can upload all the data onto your computer so that you can keep track of everything about your run. It will even let you program the watch to pace your run. For instance, if you want to do a 5 mile run, you put the information in and how fast you’d like to do it in, and it will set your pace based on how fast you want to run it. How cool is that?! The uncool part- The cost… They are between $175 to $300 and just NOT in our budget. Although I did see it listed on Amazon tonight on sale for $129. Hmmmm… Mon. 11/22: This afternoon I went to get another deep tissue massage and see my Chiropractor friend again for another adjustment. She also did the electro-stem on my back and knee, and I used the roller bed too. Amazingly, I am hardly in any pain at all. If I didn’t know better, I would never have believed that I ran 18-20 miles yesterday. So there you have it. I am feeling pretty positive today and think I am on track to complete this thing. I’d like to get at least 2 or 3 more long runs in before the big race and I’d like to run a full 26 miles just so I know what it feels like. Yesterday I never hit that “wall” I keep hearing about so I do want to see at which mile that will be for me BEFORE the actual race.
Until next time… “It doesn’t matter where you are coming from. All that matters is where you are going.” Brian Tracy