Tag Archives: 10K

The Goals Which Remain

4 Jun

Happy National Running Day, everyone!!!!

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If life was one of those missing persons shows and this blog was the example they used of my behavioral patterns, they wouldn’t even file a missing persons report.  That’s why you should follow me on Twitter, duh.  @MichelleSFTS

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I’ve been watching a lot of true crime TV lately.  There’s also been a lot of boring, but clean food and a lot of sleeping going on.  Pretty darn exciting around these parts.  Between work being busy, personal crap, my monthly friend, and the humidity spiking: I’m pushing through.  Barely, but I am.  That’s all that matters really!

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What is the most effective trick for getting motivated?  Sign up for a race of course!  So I signed up for 2.  If you’re getting confused about what races I will actually be running for the rest of the season, don’t be alarmed.  I’ve been all over the place since the relay  😦  After Pittsburgh Marathon weekend, I would’ve signed up to run across the country.  I get race fever something serious!!!   But, I’m so strapped for time and energy and I need to set realistic goals.  I’m also really torn about running a half in the fall:  getting it in while I’m still 30 or holding out for the Pittsburgh Half next May.  I’ve got to follow my heart.  If I never run another half marathon in my life, I want to know that the one I finished was Pittsburgh.  Besides, I think it’s appropriate for all old goals to met before new ones…know what I’m sayin.’

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I have 3 remaining goals for the summer:

1.  Get pageant ready.  – Psssh.  Done.  Makenzie Myers is basically my spirit animal.

2.  Brentwood Firecracker 5K – July 4th

3.  Great Race 10K – September 28th

4.  Be halfway to my weight loss goal by August – 17 lbs. to go!

 

I clearly can get nothing done without being held publicly accountable for my actions so in that spirit, you will all have to suffer along with me while I give weekly recaps about my progress.  Sorry kids, but it’s the only thing that really kept me consistent last race season and I WILL NOT BE DEFEATED.  30 don’t play, yo.  Hopefully everyone agrees that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery because I will be “borrowing” (aka committing copyright infringement) a weekly template from Ethan at Spiritual Creaminess – go check out his blog, he just finished his 1st full marathon!!  I made a fancy new banner (at the beginning of this post), I’ve got my spreadsheet locked and loaded, and I’m ready to W.O.R.K.

 

GlindaWorkBitch

 

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2014 Pittsburgh Marathon Relay Recap

5 May

YOU. GUYS.

rhianna-omg

I friggin’ did it!  I ran 6.1 miles in the 2014 Pittsburgh Marathon Relay!

This isn’t going to be as in depth as my previous race recaps because I just ran a portion of the relay, but let me start at the beginning.  I spent the majority of Friday and Saturday trying to do as little as possible except stretch and hydrate.  I was convinced that I would roll my ankle or Kevin Ware my leg at any given moment.  RISK NOTHING ITS MARATHON WEEKEND!  I went to bed super early and was basically up at 5:30AM when Christina left with her dad and sister for the start of the race.  My future sister-in-law started us off strong as our first relay runner!  I then managed to pace around my house, talking to my pets (and myself) and trying not to binge eat all of my anxiety.  I tried eating half an English muffin and literally could not get it down, I was so worked up!  Note to self:  running a leg of the relay that starts later in the day is THE WORST.  I managed to get myself redonk stressed by the time I headed to my exchange point at 9AM.  It was a tad chilly by the time I started running around 10:30, but for running purposes the temps were perfect.

Since the Race Joy app completely crashed the morning of the race, I relied on text messages from my team as people started/finished running.  No big, we are all pretty close so we were texting each other anyway.  When I got the call that the first 2 legs were done, I headed to my exchange point.  I didn’t run into any road closures on my way to Relay Exchange 3, so it took me all of 10 minutes to drive there and find a parking space basically at the corner of 5th Ave.  BONUS!

The exchange point was well coordinated but hectic with so many people hanging out waiting for runners, plus spectators just hanging out to cheer.

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I had to go to the bathroom, but I was way to nervous that my runner would come as soon as I got in line.  Instead, I ended up standing under a tree for 20 minutes in a nervous cold sweat.  There was a guy announcing the last 3 numbers on the incoming bibs and that’s how you knew when your person was coming.  It felt like he was auctioning my sanity off to the highest bidder.  Eventually I heard my number and saw my runner appear!  I put the medal around her neck, gave her a big hug and I was off!

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Clearly I didn’t remember to hit start on my Garmin until I turned the corner onto Penn Ave!  I also forgot to let Christina know that I was starting my leg, so that sent her into a scramble to get ahead of me.  (Not an easy feat with all the road closures!)  That would not be my last rookie mistake of the race…

My first mile was too fast.  I knew that was going to happen because I was all pumped up and I had Tom Petty singing American Girl to me, so I hit the bathrooms at mile 1 and forced myself to restart at a more sustainable pace.  People had told me the crowds on this leg were awesome, but I could never have imagined that they would be as amazing as they were!  There wasn’t a single block that I ran in Homewood or East Liberty where people weren’t lining the streets – standing, in chairs, under tents, outside restaurants, cooking out, hanging out with greyhounds, giving high fives, just an incredible turn out.

I have never given so many high fives to little kids in my life, it was awesome!!!!!  I tried to keep my energy high and positive the whole time and the crowds were totally feeding it.  I told myself that somewhere in the middle of my leg, I would try to take in Gatorade and whatever fuel was offered.  Frankstown Avenue was a very long, long stretch of road and I was trying to stay in my zone as much as I could.  That’s the only explanation I have for the fact that at some point I was handed Body Glide/Vaseline on a paper towel and absent-mindedly ATE IT.  Ok, I didn’t eat it necessarily, but I definitely put a big glob of it in my mouth.  When I realized that it had the texture of Crisco but no taste, I immediately spit it out.  I was laughing hysterically at myself (inner monologue style) when I noticed the woman running next to me looking horrified. At which point I powered up and ran the HELL OUT OF THERE and away from anyone who saw my hysterical faux pas.

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Thank God I didn’t swallow or chew or bite down really.  As soon as it hit my tongue I realized my mistake and saved myself!  I called my mom and told her about this afterwards – we both could not stop laughing at how typical that is of me!!  Anyway, thankfully there was a water station immediately afterwards so I could sort of rinse out my mouth and keep going.

Nothing else significant really happened after that until mile 5, where I got a sudden jolt of HOLY SHIT I’M RUNNING IN THE PITTSBURGH FRIGGIN’ MARATHON and managed to negative split on this mile.

Just before I crossed Relay Exchange Point 4, my phone was ringing and it was Christina!  She was living a nightmare trying furiously to get ahead of me and the road closures and wasn’t able to get where she needed to be.  Having her voice in my earphones instead of stupid music as I crossed that timing mat was seriously so cool!  I felt like she was really with me in that moment, almost more than if she had been off in the crowd cheering.  I immediately found my runner and wandered off to the side of the parking lot to try and hold my tears in.  I had done it – a PDR at 6.1 miles and my most significant running experience to date.  Not long after, Christina found me and gave me the biggest biggest hug in the world while I basked in all of the moment’s glory.

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I was emotionally and physically exhausted, so we decided to head home by way of Subway and just come back for my car later in the day.  I was seriously on cloud 9 all day yesterday and I basically still am!

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The rest of the day, I fielded phone calls of people asking what the heck happened with the Race Joy app and why our team’s numbers were so messed up on marathon’s website.  Turns out that our first runner didn’t wear her timing chip (aka because her dad and sister lost it somewhere downtown).  The real problem started when the runner who handed off to me decided to keep running to the finish line with her timing chip on.  Sooooo basically it looks like we were a 1 man relay team that started at leg 3?  Thanks for not reading handbook jagoff!  God I’m such a hall monitor, but seriously.  READ THE FRIGGIN’ BOOK.

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Thankfully I had my Garmin so I know my stats and that’s all that matters!  We signed up for the relay as a fun race, so I’m not really upset about the timing chip issues.  My only real goals were to finish injury-free with a medal and a PDR – and I accomplished all of it!  I am so ready to take on the next challenge!  Also, for anyone wondering about the Race Joy issues/refunds, see below.  They have been awesome via Twitter and other social media as far as communicating with users. For such a new company, I’m pretty impressed at how great their customer service has been with handling such a large issue.  Hopefully they work out the kinks, the app seems really great!

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It’s Finally Marathon Weekend!

2 May

It’s here.  Pittsburgh Marathon weekend is here.

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The last 3 days have been pure psychological torture for me.  Every time I think about the race, my stomach drops, I get a pit in my throat, my heart starts racing, and I feel just completely sick.  I think about the race about 300 times a day, so its been an interesting week.  Keep in mind that I’m only running a 6.1 mile leg of the marathon relay.  It will be my longest distance to date.

I feel mostly prepared.  I’ve been staying on track with nutrition and hydration, and I’ve performed well on my long training runs.  I’ve been building up to this since January, struggling through one polar vortex after another, and it’s finally here.  According to my training log, I’ve logged 103 miles over 4 months.  I don’t really know if that’s good or bad, but I have to accept it for what it is.  Each month, my mileage and frequency of activity increased, my pace improved, and my weight is somewhat decreased.  I would be lying if I said I did the best I could, because really I can always push myself harder.  I’m still struggling to fight the laziness in my mind.  But, I did what I did and now I feel mostly prepared.  I just have to believe in myself now.

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I will be heading to the expo tonight to grab our relay team’s stuff and then I have less than 48 hours to hyperventilate, have panic attacks, hopefully not binge eat, rest, and try to calm the fuck down.  On that note, I’m signing out!  The next time you hear from me will be post-6.1!

Coming To Terms

26 Sep

I can’t even say that my absence has been well spent.  Well spent on working, yes.  But working isn’t what I write a blog about.  I would even venture to say that I’ve been avoiding you.  And avoiding this:  I will not be running The Great Race on Saturday.

I just can’t.  And not like I just can’t because I don’t believe in myself.  I can’t in that I haven’t put my shiny new running shoes on for over a month.  I can’t in that I’m not one of those people who can unintentionally step away from running and then just pick up right where I left off.  I’m also not the kind of person who can admit defeat.  But, here I am.  Coming to terms with the fact that my 2013 race season has ended and it was the year of the 5K.

The year of the 5K wasn’t a bad year.  It was actually my best year ever.  2013 is the year I started running.  Training for and running two 5Ks is nothing at all to be ashamed of.  In the Ole 5K, I surpassed my estimated pace goals by 2 minutes and shocked myself completely.  I learned that I am capable of so much more than I ever imagined.

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In the John Thompson 5K, I placed third in my age group (I still can’t believe that), despite the fact that I had no idea how much more difficult a trail race is from a street race.

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I really feel like I ruled in 2013.   And oh, yeah:  I also whelped a litter of puppies, flipped a friggin’ house, helped run a professional association, not to mention opened a new facility and picked up a ton more work at Changin’ Time.

2013 has been a year of huge personal and professional accomplishments.  2013 has also been a year of coming to terms with the fact that I can’t do it all.  And I have to be okay with that.  I have to take pride in what I have been able to accomplish and use my experience to develop realistic goals of the future.

5 Thing Friday

2 Aug

1.  Since Christina and I will have flipped our second house on Tuesday, we decided it was time to upgrade to a better house.  We’ll be slumming it here until further notice:

CarnegieLibrary

I wish.  Except I’m almost sure this building is haunted.  Liberty and I made it a point to pass by this place, The Carnegie Library of Homestead, yesterday during our walk.  It got me thinking that I might want to rejoin the athletic club.  They offer no-contract memberships, where you can pay month to month for $35 a month.  This includes access to the pool and all group classes (which are mostly geared towards Silver Sneakers).  Still, its quite a deal and they do have some really nice equipment.

2.  I’m like practically a farmer now.

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Last night, when we got home from working on the rental house I noticed that my jalapenos were starting to get these dark patches on them.  I assume that means they are ready to be picked, considering they are approximately 3 inches long.  I’ve still got around 4 peppers not quite ready to pick, so if I messed up it won’t be a total loss.

3.  This morning was my first attempt at a kale smoothie.

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It was delicious, but I won’t be sharing the recipe until I like it better.  The kale was not quite processed enough and to be honest, I’m not a huge fan of the yogurt/almond milk base that I used.

4.  The Great Race offers a free running clinic for racers, which I of course signed up for.  I am excited to head down there tomorrow and find out what kind of running shoes I should buy.  I know my current shoes are the reason for my horrible shin splints and I’ve put off getting new ones until I can talk to someone about my pronation.

5.  All week long, I’ve been taking one of the dogs with me on my runs/walks.  It has made all the difference in the world.  It’s so much better than running with another person – different paces can present problems and I prefer solitude.  My little buddies go at my pace and stop when I want to stop and take breaks when I want to take breaks.  Their enthusiasm and excitement never wavers.  And honestly, I’ve taken far less walking breaks this week because I can see how much they love to keep going.  On top of all these reasons, its good for them.  They are cooped up inside most of the time, aside from running at the dog park every other week or playing with each other in the backyard.  It’s been a great change for everyone!

Judywalking

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