worth it?

Lately I have been thinking a lot about my running,  I seem to be going the wrong way. I can’t afford a coach to help me learn the things I need like how to pace myself for one thing.  I struggle every race, every workout.  I love getting out there, but lately I have been so disappointed in myself and my performance.  I have been working so hard, and I am not getting any faster, and all the training I have been doing , I have not lost a since pound.   I have lately been doing a lot so soul searching about it, some crying, some getting angry at myself.  I have a few more races this year, but after that, I think maybe I should back away from running for a while.  Try other fitness options  I am so down on myself for not getting any better, it is fast becoming not a fun thing for me anymore.  I used to love just putting on my headphones and going, and it seemed like I could go forever, I have the endurance for days.  I get tired of people looking down on me for my pace, and better yet thinking me running nine miles isn’t hard, because it is super easy for them to do.  So I will be looking and trying new stuff and walking away some.   I will still do this, but it will be about other sports or fitness things I will be tackling……

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Support……

I always talk about how I have this amazing group of people who support me when I race or train.  I try to be that way for other people, I volunteer for races whenever I can, I think it is a super important part of racing.  I also think it is important to just show up for the people in your life to support them.  My friend is taking on a very large challenge this weekend. The Hot Hilly Hairy 85K.  I offered to crew for her.  I want to help her succeed at this race.  I am not sure who is more nervous her for the race, or me for hoping I didn’t forget anything she will need.  I also signed up to run a relay that goes on the same course, so if she needs me, I will be there to run with her.  Now she is much faster than me normally,  but later in the day, she may just need someone to be there.  Someone to Cheer her on….remind her that she has put in the training, she can do it!  I am so proud of her, she has worked so hard for this.  So tomorrow after a short training run, I will load up my car, I kind of look like a bag lady, between my race bag, my clothes for the weekend, and things I think she might need.  Not to mention tables, a cooler, and a tent for a little shade for not only her, but the other wonderful people who are coming to cheer her on.  I am so excited for her, and feel very blessed that she is including me in her big day.  She has been one of my biggest supporters and I am so glad I can be there for her.  I can’t wait to see what is next!

100 miles……and blisters that come with them

I have not hit that number running in a month in a very long time.  I will hit it this month or go over it probably.  I have really been focusing on my miles trying to up my running miles at one time, and it seems to be working, I am even getting a little faster. I am also thinking of switching things up and trying Crossfit.  I have heard good things, and I found a gym with some good coaches.  I think it will help me with my power and speed.  Plus I like lifting so that will be fun for me.  I think switching things up will help my running and my weight loss journey.  This far out from the surgery, I am fighting for every pound, and my body fights me to give everyone up.  But I am still plugging along, trying to mix things up, and confuse my body to let some of it go.  Some of you know I have a serious problem with blisters, I have tried everything out there to keep from getting them.  You name the idea, or home remedy I have tried it.  A month or so ago, I got my Stride box, which is so fun to get all the stuff to try out and inside was a product called Run Goo, the package said it was to help prevent blisters.  I tossed it to the side, and totally forgot about it until a few weeks ago.  I came across it, and thought what the heck I will give it a shot.  It is almost like a paste that you put on the areas you have problems with.  When I first put my shoes on it was, well to say the least a weird squishy feeling, but I gave it an honest test, and set out on my run.  I have been doing races since 2009 and I have never, ever had a run that I didn’t get a blister of some sort, not once in 7 years!  As I was running I realized I didn’t feel any blisters starting.  I can almost tell you exactly how many I have before I even take my shoes off to look I have gotten so good at it.  Sometimes I get them and they aren’t sore right away so I was trying to not get too excited.  Sure enough when I got home, I took of my shoes and socks, and to my surprise no blisters.  I got pretty excited at that point thinking I have found the solution.  I went to the website, and looked at the product choices, and ordered more. I can honestly say I will hit 100 miles this month and thanks to Foot Kinetics who makes Run Goo for the first time ever I will do it with no blisters!

Support?

Sometimes I wonder how I got so lucky with the amazing supportive friends I have.  They support all of my craziness, from racing to training.  I am blessed to have met the wonderful people running and racing has brought into my life.  I am also blessed to have my hard work recognized by some amazing companies.  I never thought I would be saying that I was a Sponsored athlete for a company like the Rudy Project, or that a company that makes sportswear like Velocity would offer me a brand ambassadorship.  I feel very blessed that my hard work is being recognized by these companies.  I think as athletes, we put in all this work, that honestly most of the people in our lives don’t even know about.  We train, tired, sick, sometimes injured, but we put in the work, and that means we don’t go out as much, we miss things, family events, birthdays, we get forgetful…..we do the best to juggle everything, but when you have a passion for something, sometimes it is your main focus.  I will not lie, during the “season” that is my main focus, everything else falls to the side a bit. But then you finish your race, or races and it is amazing the feeling of knowing you finished what you set out to do. I may not have speed, I may not look like a typical athlete, but I need to realize I am.  That I deserve that title, that even though I am probably always going to be closer to the back of the pack than the front, I am still an athlete just like the person who finishes first, finishing last, even not finishing as long as I give it everything I have got does not make me less of an athlete!  So the next time you say you aren’t an athlete, think about all the work you put in, and remember you are!

Moving on……

So I had already planned the rest of my racing season early this year.  I have 6 or 7 more races this year.  Some are for fun, some are to support friends, some are just for me to see if I have improved in my speed and stamina.  Yes I had my second ever DNF, but not because I didn’t train, or put in the effort, and I even kept going when I knew something was wrong as soon as I came out of the water.  You know what though, I can’t dwell on what happened and let it fester.  Will I go back? You bet your ass I have something to prove….Next year I will finish. I will spend the next year tweaking my training to get faster in the swim.  But before then, I have the rest of this year to have a little fun and support people I care about. I have a 10 miler, called The Crim where I will be hanging with some awesome friends in Michigan.  I will be running a relay in Wisconsin to be there if my friend Kelly needs me during her 85k to run with her.   I have a 13.1 in November that will be a fun road trip with some girls, and meeting up with some amazing friends.  I am working hard to get my body in the shape I need it to be in. Starting with Physical therapy to get my knee in control, and I am also working  with a Chiropractor.  I need my knee to get with the program to make training easier. I have also been slowly backing away from some of the people in my life who I discovered were not as supportive behind my back as they were to my face.  I don’t need  it or want it in my life, either you are with me or not, but if you aren’t I don’t have a place for you in my life…..you will quickly become an outsider looking in on my circle….