Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Starting a New Running Year

As I sit here on New Years Eve reminiscing over last year (including reading my last post, lol) I thought I'd add a little challenge for the new year. I had already challenged myself with my Nike+ on their website to run 75 miles in January. The most I've ever run in one month is 82 - and that included a couple of half marathon training runs back to back! 75 sounded doable for me, so I challenged myself to do that. It comes out to an average of about 2.5 miles a day.

After I challenged myself with that goal I was surfing around some other sites and saw a Nike+ challenge and I thought, "Hmmmmmm, THAT looks cool". I went to the site again and looked around. I figured out how to start a challenge and set one up! It is called "75 miles to start the year." I posted on the WW bulletin board about the challenge and told the forum readers that it was open to all. By the time I finished posting and sent Rick to check it out I already had 8 people signed up for the challenge! Looks like I'm not the only one ready to start the new year out running!!!!
I went out today to check the progress and a few more people have joined the challenge and that is when I figured out how to add it to my blog so you can follow along on the progress as well.

Wish me luck! If I win a challenge I get a little "virtual trophy" to put in my trophy case. I actually joined 3 other challenges as well. One for teachers, one for age groupers, and one for another distance. I'm hoping that all this will continue to work as incentive to keep me running and putting in the miles so I can reach my ultimate goal of completing the White Rock Marathon in December of 2009.

Here's hoping you have a happy and healthy 2009 too!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas Y'all!

I just wanted to take a moment to say Merry Christmas to all who happen upon my blog. We have been blessed this year with good health and good running! I also want to mention that I LOVE my new Nike Mini...even if she is slightly WRONG about my last run - it wasn't .86 miles...I actually ran 4.0 miles before that, but accidently stopped my silly ipod! I finished at 5.97 miles!!! Now THAT is something to "dance" about!!!

Merry Christmas Y'all, and in the words of Tiny Tim - "God Bless Us Every One!"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


This morning we awoke to icy slick streets. Not right for December in Texas! I didn't want to stay home just 4 days before the winter holiday from school...only because that means I have to work an extra day around Easter when I know I'll be wantin' this time back again!!!

I have still been running...I can still do almost six miles in an hour - although I feel I should be doing six miles in under an hour by now! Sometimes I wonder why my times don't just zoom faster and faster like I think they should...I am running several days a week...I do TRY to go faster. It's just that it seems like the harder I try to go faster the more I have to walk later in my run....hmmmmmm. Then when I go for endurance, well, needless to say I don't go very fast.

I am making some progress though. Since it is getting close to the new year I had to take a look back at where I came from. As I look back to last January when I first began this journey I see a poor ol' lady that couldn't make it from one fire hydrant to the next without stopping to catch her breath! I remember clearly the first time I actually made it a mile on the treadmill. I was so excited and proud! Then came my first 5K in cowtown. My family was there, my son had finished the race and was standing with my daughter talking at the 30 minute mark how their dad and I should be there in around 10 more shocked they were when they saw their Dad just a couple minutes later, and how even more shocked they were to find out that I had already finished and no one had even seen me - (hence my nickname of "ghost runner", lol). Then our goal became a 10K. We ran our first in the heat of June in Dublin, TX. Even though I didn't make my goal time I learned I could survive the heat! In fact I can honestly say I learned something from every race I ran last year. Once that race was over we set our hearts and minds to the completion of a half marathon. We were looking at San Antonio in November. Even though we didn't make that one we did run in the DRC 1/2 and now I can proudly say I've run over 13 miles several times!

I guess I just have to remember to keep all things in perspective and give myself room and time to grow.

Here is to my 2009 goal...the White Rock Marathon next December!!!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Run Rudolph Run!

Today was the Rudolph Run. Rick and I got up early and I got ready. Rick is still nursing his injury from the DRC 1/2 and wasn't able to join me for this run on the road, but he was there with the camera and in spirit once again as my greatest supporter!

It was about 33 degrees when we left the house, so I was in long sleeves and sweats...I think I need to get some running tights that aren't quite so heavy to run in. When we got there I was amazed! When we ran the Springfest run last spring parking was no problem, but today there just weren't any spots left. People were parking along the road and in the grass, in business parking lots, EVERYWHERE! We went on down and parked at the courthouse and walked back to the staging area. We went over to the tents and picked up our bibs and T-shirts - and I got my chip for the timing. Then we walked by the tents to see what they were giving away, or signing you up for. The annoucer told us at this time that this was the biggest Rudolph Run yet...there were over 3,000 runners participating! The milers were just finishing up and they were calling for the 5K folks to go to the start line, so - off I went.

I participated in the warm-ups and the time went pretty quickly. Before I knew it they were doing the 10 second countdown to start and the crowd started moving. I crossed the start line but still had to walk a little bit before the crowd really started to pick up the pace and spread out a little. It wasn't nearly as bad as some of the other races I've been in lately, I didn't see anyone really walking at the start - they were just packed in so tightly trying to cross the timing mats we couldn't get running very well. Finally the group spread out and we could get to our paces.

I really wanted to make the race a good one and so I was going for under 30 minutes. I've only done that one time so I know I CAN do it...just haven't been able to reproduce that one run. Since it was the same course I was very hopeful for today's race. At the 1 mile mark I checked Garmin and I was at a 9:33 pace - so that was really good and I was on track! I was still feeling good, and even got tickled as I passed a pack of young girls (elementary or middle school age) who were just slowing down to a walk. I heard one ask, "How much farther?" so I told her, "Only 2 more miles to go". I felt pretty good that I had enough air to talk going at that pace...hehehehe.

I kept running and recognized some of the landmarks from last spring. I knew where some of the tougher parts were and tried to prepare myself for them. The second mile wasn't quite as fast, but I was happy with a 9:53. So at the 2 mile mark I was at 19:28 - 30 seconds under a 10 minute mile...if I could keep it up, or speed back up just a little I would make my goal! I kept pushing. I was really starting to feel the run at about the 2.25 mark and I saw the water station and crossed the street to get some water - I think this was a mistake for me...if I had bypassed the water I wouldn't have slowed down and I probably would have been OK - but once I slowed for the water I couldn't get back up to the speed I needed. I noticed my stomach and claves were cramping up so I actually walked for about 30 seconds and then went back to running again. I knew Rick was waiting somewhere up ahead with the camera and I wanted to look good so I sucked it up and took off. I was really feeling the run but I kept looking ahead to see if I could see him - I saw 3 photographers standing just in front of the final turn and I KNEW one of them was Rick...I was right. He was shooting pictures of me and grinning from ear-to-ear!

See here I am leading those other 350 some odd runners to the finish!

Finally, I looked down at the Garmin and saw my 3 mile time was 29:43. I knew then I wasnt going to make my goal, but I was going to be close. This was just after I passed Rick. I felt like I was really dragging, but I was actually still running at about a 10:15 pace...This is pretty good for me - I feel best at about 10:30 on my really long runs. I rounded the corner where Rick was taking pictures and headed for the finish line. I still thought I could be close to my other times - right around 30:00 minutes....I actually finished in 31:18. Not my best, but not my worst either - and an overall 9:55 pace...

I KNOW I can beat that 30 minute mark - and I will, soon. Today just wasn't the day. I finished 7 out of 15 in my age group. I was relieved to see that even if I had PR'd and run under my best of 29:54 I still would have finished in the same place. Overall in the 5K there were 766 runners and I placed number 412. Not too shabby!

Next scheduled run right now is not until the end of February - the Cowtown 1/2....that is where I will be trying for my 2:20 time again. I think I can...I think I can...

Saturday, November 29, 2008

And Still I Run

I had no idea that running could be so habit forming! As you know I got up early on Thanksgiving Day along with about 30,000 others to run the Turkey Trot. (Just in case you are wondering - this is what it is like to start with 30,000 runners.)

After the race we came on home and got ready for the kids to come over. They all showed up about 3:00 and we ate our Thanksgiving meal of Honey Baked Ham and Turkey with most of the fixin's at about 5:00. Everyone was in high spirits and we had a great time.
Yesterday Rick and I just kind of rested up. Ran a few errands and such - but when it came time to work out I chose to run intervals! Did you get that? I CHOSE to run intervals. I'm going to try to break the 30 minute barrier (well, it is a barrier for ME anyway) at the Rudolph Run next Saturday, so I ran like the wind on the treadmill last night. Today I'll be doing the weight training. We'll see how everything goes.

Better "run", we have places to go and things to do...and I still have to run :)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Dallas Turkey Trot - in the bag!

Yep...we got up early this morning (6:30) and headed off to the DART rail station to meet Cotton. We rode the train downtown and walked to the staging area and only got there 1 hour early. We walked around and found some water and bananas and listened to the band and speaker, but mostly tried to stay warm in the 50 degree weather :) ... With about 10 minutes left before the start I headed to the porta potty lines and got back to the start area with about 2 minutes to spare. I handed my jackets to Rick, but decided to keep my sweat pants on...a decision I would regret around the 6 mile mark! (It DID warm up!)

They kept announcing that the 3 mile run would start 15 minutes after the 8 mile run - but that does about as much good as telling the walkers, strollers and runners with dogs to go to the back of the start area! They started the wheelchair racers at 8:59 and our gun went off at 9:00 - very nice! Just the way it was supposed to be. Keep in mind that there were supposed to be 34,000 runners this year - Oh wait, make that 33,998 - Rick and Chris weren't able to make it due to injuries :( ... It took me 5 minutes to cross the start line!

My goal was 10:30 minute miles and I did pretty good keeping to that pace. I wanted to finish the race in 1:25 and I needed to keep that pace to do that. The first few miles went without a hitch. I even made it throuh the first water stop without walking more than a few steps. It was amazing to watch the number of 3 mile runners that turned off at the split... Didn't surprise me too much simply by the number of families with wagons and little kids I was trying to get around.

By mile 4 I was starting to feel the hills a little and was about to stop to walk when I topped a hill and there was a water stop! I walked through that (OK because that IS part of my running plan! ) and took off running again. I was still on pace - whew! My next goal was the 10K distance of 6.2 miles in less than 1:07 ...when I looked down at my Garmin I did it in 1:04:44 - I was ready to dance in the street, but I was too worn out by then! HA HA! I looked up and the last 2 miles I had to cover included the two worst hills of the entire race! We had to run up to the bridge - cross over that, and then run up another part of the bridge! I did walk these two parts but I knew myself and I knew it would be better for me to walk a little up the hills than to crash and burn at the top. I followed my plan and I was doing pretty good time wise...

I crossed the 7 mile mark at about 1 and 1/2 minutes over the time I wanted so I knew I needed to pick up the pace just a tad. As I was running this part of the bridge I noticed a small pack of people at the curb - It was really scary when I saw that they were giving CPR to a man down on the ground! Just as I passed one of the emergency personnel on a bicycle came over to help, and as I rounded the corner a little down the road the emergency vehicle was coming the other way and the police were letting everyone passing know that help was on the way...There were a lot of concerned runners! My prayers are with him and his family and I sure hope that he is OK!

I couldn't believe the last part of the race was up a hill. I struggled a little, but I kept telling myself I had less than a quarter mile to go! As I ran across the finish line the clock said 1:30 and my Garmin said 1:25:53...I had made up some, but not all, of the time I was behind at the 7 mile mark. I was less than 1 minute over my goal time - so I was really happy with that. I just checked my official time and they have me at 1:26:02. Close enough :) .... Cotton just barely beat me this time...he ran the race in 1:02:57 - so I was within 30 minutes of him...

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Slugdom. Fun? - NOT

One would think that once a half marathon is completed you would be on a runner's high. Such is NOT the case! I finished the race, and yes, I was on a high for a day or so...wore the nice shiny medal and the shirt to school for my kids to see. They follow my "racing career" and ask every Friday if I'm racing that weekend. They are BIG supporters! They love to see the medals that hang on the wall behind my desk. I think they can't believe someone so old can still run!

Anyway...I was excited about the race for those first few days and then, as usual, life got in the way once more. We've had a bizzare few weeks here. Between my school schedule and Rick's schedule at work we haven't been able to run like we were just before the race. Rick messed up his knee during the race. We don't know if it was the new shoes he got or the hillier than expected course, all we know is it messed it up pretty good. We didn't get to run at all that week after the race, which is probably a good thing, because our research shows you should take some time off after - although we had been doing the distance every other week and running between all along. We got up early last Sunday morning to go run and the plan was to go to church right after we showered, etc. Well, you know what they say about those best laid plans, right? Just as we started running I felt a "pop" in my ankle - no biggie, I thought... I've done that a million times and I just keep running and it relaxes and I'm fine. Well - this time at about the 5 mile mark it wasn't fine! My ankle was really hurting - Rick's knee was killing him and we ended up walking the last 4 miles! And this after I finally did my 5K distance in under 30 minutes! We were really bummed. It took us over an hour and 45 minutes to get around the lake so we called Candy and let her know we weren't going to make it to church, but we stopped by and dropped off what we were taking and then came home and hobbled around like a couple of "old folks" for the rest of the day!

We haven't run since. Well, I did run last night - a short run for me, but it was a run. It didn't feel as good as it did before the DRC Half - but I'm sure it'll come back quick. Perhaps part of this feeling of "sluggishness" is simply being so sad that we aren't in San Antonio this weekend. It is really a downer that Rick is working this entire weekend - and I have to go into school to finish this six weeks grades as well. We were both really looking forward to running the inaugural race in San Antonio and I think it simply adds to the "blues" we were already feeling. Just to make sure we didn't continue to be slugs I signed us up for the Cowtown Half this coming February. It will give us something to keep working towards in the cold months of December and January! (Although I'm going to be looking for a January Race too!) We are also looking at the Capital 10K in March...I'll keep you posted on that!

I think I'll go have a cuppa coffee now...and return to the land of slugdom for just a little longer. I'll probably run a 5K tonight just to make sure I still can and to keep from sinking too deep in the slug pool! Keep safe and keep running!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

DRC Half Marathon

Today Rick and I ran our first Half! My goal was to complete the run in under 2:30.

Our day started out early. We were up at 5:00 AM to make our way to the DART Rail Park and Ride over in Garland. We caught the train and made it to the White Rock station, then caught the shuttle to take us to the race. Once we got out on the road we determined pretty quickly that we had made the right decision in choosing to Park and Ride. The traffic was backed up for miles with people trying to get into the limited parking area around the lake!

We got to the staging area and quickly found the bag drop off. We went to the side of the fence and removed our warm up pants and put those in the bag. We knew we wouldn't need those for the run, although I chose to keep my sweat shirt/jacket and Rick kept on his long sleeved was still pretty cool (the upper 60's). We went over to put our bag in the check in area when I heard a voice from my past. I stopped, swung around and sure enough there stood Mary Lewellyn - Cotton's first grade teacher! I taught with her for 5 years at Northlake Elementary! She was one of the volunteers at the check in station! We backed away from the entrance into the tented area to catch up a little. We were so excited to see each other! I found out that she has been running for years and is a member of a couple of the local running clubs, including the Dallas Running Club which was the sponser of this event. Retired now, she still runs when she can, although right now she is on the sidlines with a torn miniscus on her left knee. After chatting for a couple of minutes Rick and I went on in and dropped off our bag.

We walked around the staging area a bit and found the merchandising tent where we would need to go after the race to see if we could exchange our shirts. (By the time we signed up they only had small and extra small left - I had gotten extra small thinking we might be able to give them to the girls but they were WAY too big for them! We were successful in this endeavor after the race and we each got a shirt that fit!) We found a tent that was giving away bagels so we each got about a third of a bagel and a swipe of peanut butter and headed for the start line. Didn't want to start off on a totally empty stomach!

We found the pacers for a 2:20 finish and got in behind them and just ahead of the pacers for the 2:30 finish. We were both hoping for the 2:20 time... The announcer kept us informed about the time left before the start and it seemed like no time at all when the countdown began. On your mark, Get set, GO! and the gun went off at exactly 8:00. A little over 4 minutes later we crossed the start line! It was pretty slow going at first. Of couse you had to dodge the walkers that always seem to get in line ahead of you, and there were some slower paced runners, but after about the .75 mile mark the pace was pretty good for me. Rick and I were pretty close and going just slightly slower than we had planned. About mile 2 or 2.5 we were running along when I saw a guy come running out of the bushes along the side of the trail. I yelled out "MEN CHEAT!" The runners around me cracked up laughing and a discussion of how to politely go to the restroom on a long run ensued. It was quite funny! It was just after this that I got stuck behind some slow runners running together across the path...Rick got around them. I was trying to catch up to him yelling his name to get him to slow down - he was running at a faster pace than he wanted - but he couldn't hear me over his Ipod and I knew if I kept going at that pace I would die at the end so I let him go. He would have left me at about the 9 mile mark anyway - we just parted ways a lot sooner than either of us had planned :( ...

I was finally starting to catch up to where I thought I should be a little at a 5K time was just slightly slower than I wanted - 32:22, but I knew that was because of the start so I just kept right on plugging along. My pace would vary - quicker when I was in the open, slower when I got stuck behind people...but I was averaging between 10 and 11 minute miles which is what I wanted.

We veered off our normal White Rock running path into a neighborhood and that is where the running really got tough. There were several hills that I wasn't expecting! I shortened my stride, straightened my back and just kept on pushing. Just the way we had trained for them... Actually felt pretty good and at the 10K mark I was at my "normal" 1:06:16. Seems I just can't get that 10K time any lower in a race, LOL. At the 1/2 way point (6.55 miles) I was right on pace for my 2:20 race. They called out the time as I crossed the line painted across the trail as 1:14 - I looked at my Garmin and saw 1:10. Whoo-hoo...I might just be able to do this after all....perhaps even faster, after all they HAD said the last half of the course was fairly flat!

I still felt pretty good, but I was tiring. At about the 8.5 mile mark I really started feeling the heat. We weren't in the 60's any more, THAT was for sure! About the last hill out of the neighborhood a very nice gal was running next to me and she said something about them saying this was a flat course. I answered that I had seen hillier (Tahoe), but this was one of the hilliest I had run and I was sure ready for the flat part! She said she was running this as one of her training runs because she was going to be running the White Rock Marathon in December for 57th birthday. I told her I was running this one for my 53rd! We decided we were pretty "BAD" ladies and she started yelling out to the crowd "Look at these BAD running ladies!" The crowd cheered and yelled us on as we left the neighborhood and veered onto the bridge at the spillway.

At the 9 mile mark my time was showing that I was slowing again - it was a 1:37:04...about 3-4 minutes slower than what I had been running in the early morning hours lately with the much cooler temperatures. Mile 9 was one of my slowest - 11:40. I think this was one of the last hills and included the bridge and the spillway. I had to walk here, simply couldn't run up that steep incline. This is where I lost my "BAD" friend. As soon as I got to the top I started running again though. It was nice running back on the path I knew though. I knew what to expect, I just couldn't make my legs go any faster. I would look at the Garmin and want to pick the pace back up, but my legs weren't cooperating at this point. When I looked down at the 10 mile marker and saw that I would need to do 10 minute miles to cross at 2:20 I knew I wasn't going to make that time. I was disappointed, but I also knew that crossing before the 2:30 mark WAS still doable if I kept pushing. Even though they said the last few miles were flatter - which they were - they still weren't FLAT and any hint of an incline at this point almost made me want to cry. I kept watching my time get closer and closer to missing that 2:30 mark. I prayed that I would make that mark...I had been working so long..."Please God, I'm not asking for 2:20 anymore, just let me finish in under 2:30!" Seems silly huh?

The last mile I started my normal countdown. It was so nice knowing we were getting closer and I was just urging my legs to keep moving one in front of the other...It was nice to have people along the way cheering for the runners and just after the 12 mile mark there was a whole group of the Team in Training supporters with music and bells and clappers just yelling a screaming for every runner going by. It really does lift your spirits!

With about 3 tenths of a mile to go my legs just gave out. I looked at Garmin and I was running at over a 12 minute mile pace. I knew at this point in the race and at this pace I wasn't going to make my goal. I was going as fast as I could and I was crushed. I staggered and slowed even further - my run was barely more than a walk when this nice girl in a red shirt came up beside me. She patted me on the back and said "Come on, we'll finish this one together!" She was so sweet. I told her not to let me slow her down, but she said - "No, we'll finish together - we've come too far to stop now." and she just started talking to me. I glanced down at Garmin and sure enough, my pace had picked up a little. She told me that she had turned her ankle at about mile 7 so she wasn't going to make her goal time, but was shooting for under 2:30. I told her that 2:30 was my original goal and she said "Well, lets go for it together then, see, I told you we would finish together. We'll either make it or we won't, but it will be together!" We kept running and chatting...we saw the 13 mile marker so I knew we were withing a tenth of a mile now...we turned a corner and there was the finish line. Rick and I had been working on sprinting to the finish so I told my new friend that we were going to go for it..."You mean we are going to sprint it?" she asked in answer was "YES!" and together we picked up the pace even more. All of a sudden she said "Girlfriend, look at the clock, you are going to do it!" I looked over and saw 2:29:50 and I pushed as hard as I could. I knew it still said 2:29 when I actually crossed, but at this point all I could see was Rick's grinning face! I ran to him and he said "YOU DID IT!" I looked for the girl in red but she wasn't there - and Rick said he never saw her. You think what you want, but I think she was my personal angel - sent as an answer to that cry out for help to finish in under 2:30!

Rick's official time was: Clock time - 2:21:03:00, Chip time - 2:17:32:19
My time was : Clock time - 2:29:53, Chip time - 2:26:21:12

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Lesson Learned!

OK, OK...maybe I should have already known this, but I learned this one the hard way.

This morning I was determined that in our training run I was going to run the first 3.1 miles in UNDER 30 minutes. I've only done that once - during the Allen Springfest 5K, and I still don't know what happened except that it was very cold that day. I got up feeling GREAT and ready to go. The temperature outside was between 55 and 62 degrees, but it didn't feel that cold. I told Rick I wanted to stop and get an energy drink on the way to "the Rock". We stopped at Quick Trip and I got the energy drink. Rick thought he'd like some coffee and it sounded so good I got some too. I drank all the energy drink and about 1/3 of the coffee on the way to the lake. We started off and I still felt great. I ran the first mile in 9:37 and I was running smooth and not breathing too awfully hard - so I was right on the pace I wanted to do the entire 3.1 in.

Disclaimer: This part of the post is not for the faint stomached!

At about mile 1.4 Rick called out that he wasn't going to drink coffee before a run ever again - he was really feeling it. I turned my head to see if he was looking OK and when I turned back it hit...I said I'm going to have to stop for a second - we stopped and I walked onto the grass and immediately heaved and heaved and heaved - I lost a good portion of what I had consumed that morning in the grass on the side of the running path. Of course then I felt like carp as well! Oh, and by the way, for those of you that use the Garmin feature of auto-pause...your Garmin may pause when you stop - but as soon as you start barfing your guts out it senses the movement and starts the clock running again! It will sure mess with your pace!

End of Disclaimer

We went on running, but with the stop I knew I wasn't going to make my under 30 time. I pressed on, but after mile 2, and before mile 3 I had to walk some and let my tummy settle a bit. Even with the stop and the walk break we still managed a 31:30 5K time. Well, I thought, perhaps a negative split then....but it was not to be. We finished mile 6.2 in a respectable 1:03:13 which is about a 31:43 5K. So we kept on mile 8 I was feeling good again and I actually ran the last mile at a 9:47 pace. I think that is the first time I've ever run the last mile and it felt halfway decent. I just wish this had been a bit better run.

I want you all to notice the new races posted in my upcoming runs list.

We got the news this past week that we may not get to go to San Antonio. Rick got transferred to a new group last week and they are scheduled to move their offices the weekend of the race. We should find out something for sure next week.

To stave off some of the disappointment we signed up for the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot - an 8 mile run on Thanksgiving morning, and then we decided to go for broke and sign up for the Rudolph Run here in Allen - a 5K that some of my students have been talking about running as well. Then today when we were talking to Cotton on the phone he told us to sign up for the Dallas Running Club 1/2 marathon as my birthday present. He knew how disappointed we were to not get to go run our first 1/2 in San Antoino, and this one is already 99% full - so if we were going to sign up we needed to do so now. We were planning on running the distance that day anyway - now we'll just get a medal for doing it! He also thinks he might be able to come out and watch us run - that will be really cool! THANKS SON!

Guess we'll be tapering our running next week now for the newest race on our list. I'm not going to take San Antoinio off until we know something for sure...keep tuned in for more details to come!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Training Run

Today was another long run in our training for the San Antonio Rock and Roll 1/2 marathon. It is getting close and we are getting excited. We decided when we signed up for this run that we wanted to run the distance before the race just to make sure we could finish - Ha!

This was the second time we have run the entire 13.1 miles - and was by far one of my best runs. I've been saying all summer that the heat just kills my running and the run this morning is just one more item I have to prove that.

When we got to White Rock Lake this morning it was about 6:30. (We slept in since we went to church last night and wouldn't be driving over to see the kids after our run this morning!). It was also about 60 degrees! For me - that was heaven! When we started out it was with shivering muscles and chattering teeth, but that didn't last long! :) The first mile was a warm up in the most literal sense of the word. The longer I went, the better I felt. By the 2nd mile in I was really feeling good! I picked up the pace...I kept thinking, "This is going to kill me on the back side, but it feels so good right now!" Rick said there was a little way there that he had trouble keeping up with me! We finished the first 5K in a respectable 30:57. The 3rd mile of that was run at a 9:46 pace. Like I said - I was starting to feel good!

We stopped for our water break and then took off again. Hoooo wheeeee! After that stop I could really feel the thigh muscles start to tighten. I figured they would loosen right up....hmmmmm. We ran the next 5K in 30:48. If it had been a 10K we were running that would have been negative splits! We actually ran at 9:55, 9:52, and 9:56 splilts for the 3 miles! And one of those was over 1/2 up-hill!!!

I was still feeling good and I was pretty much keeping pace with Rick - a first on one of these longer runs. Well, not so much maybe. The first time we went this distance my goal was to keep the pace below 11:00 minute miles and he stayed with me because we didn't know how hard it would be and we didn't want to have to quit before we finished the distance. Normally when we just do the 9 mile loop he pretty much leaves me in the dust and waits for me at the water stops. :) He is always encouraging when I catch up!

We took off from our water break and I was determined that I was going to keep the pace up for the next 3 miles and beat our 9 mile PR. Our splits on this set were 10:07, 10:06, and 9:43. Can you tell where the fewest hills were, lol? We finished the normal 9.1 miles in 1:30:09. Only .03 slower than our best which was run when we knew that was the complete distance! Now we only had 4 miles to go!

The last 3 were pretty hard. Mile 10 was OK, although it did have a pretty good hill I was still feeling pretty good. I ran that in 10:09. Then the thighs finally locked up - they were screaming at me to STOP THE INSANITY!!!!! My head just kept telling them to pick 'em up and put 'em down. My goal was to not go over a 10:30 split and I almost made it. Mile 12 was my slowest at 10:34. Again, the hill got to me...thank heavens for the water at the top of that hill. Rick finally had to slow down and wait for me a bit at then end of mile 13...with only about .41 miles to go he slowed down and paced me to the end - encouraging me every step of the way to kick it up a notch. We finally finished the entire 13.1 in 2:12:15. Now this is Garmin time - not clock time. I still figure we did it in well under 2:30 - even with longer water stops than we would take in a race, so we are right on pace to meet our goal in San Antonio of finishing in under 2:30.

It is so great to have such an amazing running partner with me on these runs. Even when I can't keep up I know he will be there waiting at each stop for me with an encouraging word and a pat on the back. Keeps me going, and going, and going......

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Pumpkin Run

Today was one of the days I've been training for! The 22nd annual Pumpkin Run. (According to the lovely shirt I'm now wearing!) I was hoping to break my previous blazing speed of 1:07:45 from the Dublin 10-2-4K we ran last June. My training times have been in the 1:04 range in our White Rock runs. (That is real time which includes water stops). I felt pretty confident I could do it this time! I was hoping that the horrible cold I picked up from the kids at school wouldn't affect me too much - The Nyquil and Dayquil I had been taking had seemed to help my breathing some and I wasn't coughing as much as I had been over the course of the past week.

We got off to a bad start when we were driving over to Joe Pool. Who would think you would run into dead stopped traffic at 7:30 on a Saturday morning? Well, if you live in the Dallas area I suppose it SHOULD come as no surprise. Yep, there we were, STUCK! We finally decided to go around the city instead of through it and found out there had been a traffic accident where a minivan had flipped over a guard rail...I sure hope no one was seriously hurt!

We finally got to the park where the race was to be run and missed the turn because the sign was right at the turn - no warning ahead of we made a U-eeee and came back. Then it was bumper to bumper from the entrance all the way to where you parked! We picked up our packets and our timing chips, got our bibs and chips situated where they belong and walked to put the stuff back into the car. Stopped at the porta-potty on our way back to the start to find out that it had been delayed for about 15 minutes, which meant we wouldn't start until 9:15...not a big deal in most places, but in Texas 15 minutes could mean an extra 10 degrees of heat!

Now this is a big run for the schools around the area - didn't know that ahead of time! The schools compete to see who can get the most runners to sign up and run. (Most enter the 5K). The winning school get $550.00. Sooooooo ... the begining of the race was a bit packed to say the least. The top 3 schools alone had over 400 runners with them! And as usual, the walkers did NOT go to the back of the starting area as requested NUMEROUS times! I don't know why they can't just do that - it isn't like their time starts before they cross the mat or anything and it is such a PAIN to go around them!

Once the gun went off Rick and I started working our way through the maze of kids, moms and dads, and strollers in front of us. I looked at my Garmin and we were going at about a 9:00 mile...oops, a little fast for me - so I slowed my pace a bit. The first mile felt great - even fighting the cold. My pace was still a little faster than I wanted at 9:30, but it felt really good. Mile two was good as well...there was a small hill, but I took it like a pro and shortened my steps, straightened my back and I was up it before I knew it was there - well, may not before I knew it was there, but it didn't pose much of a problem! Mile 3 is where I started feeling the run. We were out of the shade provided by the trees the first two miles, the temperature was rising and I looked up and saw a fairly decent hill in front of me. I was sure I could do this. It wasn't as bad as the hill at White Rock - I've hit that one at the 5 mile mark and kept my pace pretty steady, so I should be able to do this too, right? I could still see Rick up ahead of me, so I was feeling pretty good about myself, even though my pace had slowed to about 10:30 miles. At the top of the hill I thought I was going to die! I couldn't catch my breath and I felt like my legs were made of lead. I kept plodding along though watching my pace get slower and slower. Rick hit the turn-around ahead of me (of course) and I got to give him a thumbs-up as he went by going the other direction. I kept going - walked through the water stop which was the plan, and went on for the turn around. I was hoping to pick the pace back up at the hill - and I did for a very short time. Mile 4 was decent - under 11:00 - although I really wanted to keep them all below 10:30 - I've done that before! Still no trees and the temperature was still climbing. It would be in the low 80's before we were finished - which is still much better than the 90's we experienced in Dubllin!!!

I turned the corner at the bottom of the hill and figured I was headed for home and should be turning at the road we started on fairly soon...but it was not to be. When we got there we had to keep going out to the lake, around a small loop, and back in again. This was all into a headwind. Even though I felt like I had picked up the pace it sure wasn't showing! I passed Rick here again with only about a mile to go in the race (so he had about 1/2 a mile at this point). We high-fived each other as we passed and he shouted some words of encouragement to me. I just kept plodding along. After the loop I headed for the last water station. Guess what...they were out of water! I guess all the 1 mile and 5K runners wiped them out. Oh yeah...the beginning of this loop is where the 5K and 10K joined back up, so you were back dodging the walking 5K people wasn't quite as bad because it was the end of the race and it wasn't as bunched up, but still a little frustrating.

I made the turn and there were a few people that had finished the races that were walking back to their cars, but they were polite and were pretty much staying out of the running lanes. I finally made it to where I could see the finish line and there was Rick, walking across the parking lot to cheer me on. He shouted for me to "kick it to the finish", so I gave it all I had. (So did the guy in front of me - but I passed him anyway....should Imention he was probably in his 70's?)!

I crossed the finish line and Rick took me to the banana and water stations to fuel up. It felt good! We waited for the results and I was happily surprised to see that I now had a new PR - 1:06:03. A great 1:42 better than my previous time - but a disappointing 2 minutes slower than my goal time of 1:04. I was also surprised to learn I had taken 2nd place in my age group - I guess I should mention here that there were only 2 runners in my age group! I had to laugh at that!!!! The first place runner only beat me by 15 seconds!

Rick had an amazing race. Despite having problems with the ball of his foot he ran a fantastic 58:42...breaking the one hour barrier. He just keeps getting better and better. Despite being that good he placed 5th in his age group...but only a couple minutes out of a medal...I'm sure it won't be long before he will be picking up some bling!

All in all it ended up being a pretty good race. I hope we get a chance to do it again next year - but without the cold and the bad foot!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

A Most Amazing Race

This post is not about me - it is about one of the most amazing people I son. Nearly two years ago, in January of 2007, my son Cotton started running. He started like most runners - slowly, carefully, a block at a time. It wasn't long before he was running a mile, then two, then more. He came in one April day and told us that he had signed up for a half marathon. Not just any half marathon mind you, the Tahoe half. We were excited for him, and proud of him for making that commitment, and the more we talked about it the more we felt someone should go with him, so his dad took some vacation and in September of last year they were both off to Tahoe for 5 days. Cotton did really well, he ran a 2:06 time in only his second race.

After that race he came back even more excited about running. He also began biking - first with a mountain bike, then with a road bike. He kept working on speed and endurance in both arenas. One evening he came in and said he had decided he really wanted to challenge himself and try the Ultra Marathon in Tahoe. 72 miles all the way around the lake. We all discussed it and he said he would need to get a crew to go with him. Why not us? So all three of us made reservations for air and hotel and we got a van for the race. He biked the MS150 early in the year and then was ready to start concentrating on training for the Ultra. The classes he was taking in school were much more time consuming than he had first anticipated, so in March he sent an email to move down to just the marathon. School and work were simply taking up too much of his training time. In August the restaurant he was working at shut the doors with no warning, that meant he had to get a new job - now he had longer hours which cut into his training time even more. He thought he'd just pay the fee and move on down to the half marathon again when we got to Tahoe.

We flew into Tahoe on Thursday and met his grandparents there. We had such a great evening visiting. Got up before sunrise on Friday and went out for a short (3 - 4 mile) run, then out to Emerald Bay to take pictures and hike for a bit. Then we went up to Heavenly in the cable cars and hiked the green trail. We came back a little early so Cotton could ride the zip line from the top of the mountain. A 550 ft. drop!!! He had a blast.

On Saturday Rick and I got up early and went back out to Emerald Bay to get some sunrise pictures and hike some more. Cotton stayed at the hotel so he could go to the expo and rest his legs for the race. He had decided that whatever they had him signed up for he would give it a shot. As we were returning to the hotel we got a phone call from Cotton. They had lost his bib - he had a handmade bib, and the race was not going to be chipped timed. He was so upset. When we got back we talked to him and then we all got ready to meet Grandma and Grandpa for lunch and shopping. While we were there Cotton got a text message saying they had his bib. HE WAS STILL SIGNED UP FOR THE ULTRA MARATHON, NOT THE MARATHON!! OK...he decided he would go for it. Even though the longest distance he had run up to this point was 24 miles he would give it a shot. He went to the safety meeting with his Dad and then we were off and running picking up supplies for the midnight start of the race.

At midnight (after about 2-3 hours of rest) Cotton took off. We would drive ahead of him for about 3 miles and park and wait for him to catch up with us. We had mapped out the first three spots, but beyond that was anybody's guess! When he reached us the first few times he didn't even stop. We knew what he wanted so we would have it ready to hand to him. He was going for about a 13 minute mile pace and was doing pretty well sticking to it. He figured if he did 24 40 minute 5Ks he would finish within the allotted time. He was slightly ahead of pace after the 3rd stop. Once we passed that stop we were out of Tahoe and just on the highway. Let me tell you - it is DARK out there! When Rick and I were sitting in the car we couldn't even see each other! But if you stepped outside there were so many more stars than you could EVER imagine! It was simply amazing.

At about 3:00 AM Cotton stopped at stop 6 (17.8 miles). We didn't know it at the time, but once he started back up it was going to be a bit of a climb. HA! I can say a bit of a climb now because we didn't know what he was in for - running for 3 miles uphill at a 7% incline. It was like the hill that would never end! We were able to let him know at this point however that a lot of the other runners ahead of him had been walking a little more. He kept going and at stop number 10 we congratulated him. He had completed 26.2 miles - his first full marathon! It was 5:04 AM and he was still ready to run some more.

After stop number 11 we ran into just a little trouble. At the meeting, I guess Rick had to step out to go pick up some bus tickets or something, so he missed the information about a couple of the turns that needed to be made. We missed the turn. After 15 minutes with no runners passing us we backtracked to the turn, found the director and made sure we were where we needed to be. We caught up with Cotton (who, thank heavens, had NOT missed the turn) and gave him some Gatorade and orange slices. We were also fortunate that I was running with him when his phone rang so he was able to get some encouraging words from one of his friends.

As we waited at stop number 17, about 8:00 AM we could see Cotton walking toward us. It appeared like he had really hit a wall! He had completed about 37.4 miles so we could understand how exhausted he was. He was very emotional as he told us he would just like to try for 40 miles. He was so close. I asked if I could run with him a little bit and he must have REALLY been tired because he said yes. Off we went...oops, I quickly realized I had forgotten to take off a couple of layers! You heat up pretty quickly when you are running as opposed to just sitting outside a car waiting! I stuck with it though and when we stopped we were at the 39.5 mile mark. I told him, "You can do this!" I left my fleece jacket and sweater in the van and off we went for another 2 miles. At 41.7 miles I guess the Red Bull had given him wings because he was leaving me in the dust. He was up to 9:30 minute miles or faster - going uphill! When we reached the van we decided it was Dad's turn to run a little. Off went my boys. After stop 20 (46.1 miles at 9:22 AM) Rick told me that Cotton wanted to see if he could finish the 50 miles in under the qualifying time of 11 hours. I thought "cool", even though I didn't have a clue what he was trying to qualify for! At the next stop (48.2 miles) Rick told me - he wants to qualify for the Western States 100! I got back in the van and drove just a few 10ths of a mile down the road and there were the vehicles. The race director was there cheering runners on. She asked the name of my runner...I told her Cotton, that he was still going strong and was hoping to make it in the qualifying time. She just grinned and said that at this point he could probably crawl and make it! It was so beautiful to see him come up over the rise - he passed the mark at 10:18!!! Over 40 minuted UNDER the time needed. He blew past me like I was standing still...Oh yeah, I WAS standing still! Rick caught up and we both got in the van to drive to the next spot up the road. At just over 10:30 and 51 miled Cotton decided to pull the plug. Both legs were nothing but knotted muscles, and he felt like his knee was going so he called it a day.

Some might think that this was a failure since he didn't finish the entire 72 miles. I don't. I look at someone who overcame so much to get there - he had prepared for a totally different race, but when push came to shove he gave it his all. He more than doubled his best distance, ran through pitch blackness - ALONE, conquered a few demons, blew through several "walls", and qualified for one of the most prestigious Ultra races there is! I was amazed at his courage and perseverance. When I grow up I want to be just like him!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Flip a Coin

I don't know whether to be disappointed or ecstatic!?! The plan today was to run 11 miles. We keep trying to up the distance so we can get to the 13.1 mark of a 1/2 marathon before we go to San Antonio and have some time to build a little speed...not simply say we can make it. It is simply for peace of mind. Unfortunately it wasn't in the cards for today...we only made the loop, 9.01 miles today. But you know - it was a GREAT run for us. I thought we were going to slow the pace a little, since we were adding the miles, but last night I mentioned to DH that if we were going to beat our best 9 mile time going RIGHT around the lake that we would have to run a 9:30 mile at mile 5.(Yes, Dear Readers, I am STILL directionally impared and don't know the cardinal direction - it is either right or left!) Well, I guess he misunderstood me and thought I wanted to do 9:30 miles for the first 5K! (I think I said that about running the Liberty 5K this Thursday maybe?) We didn't even quite do that - but here is what we DID do.

Mile 1 - 10:10
Mile 2 - 10:03
Mile 3 - 9:56 --------- 5K 31:05
Mile 4 - 9:55
Mile 5 - 9:46
Mile 6 - 9:52 ---------10K 1:01:37
Mile 7 - 10:03
Mile 8 - 10:08
Mile 9 - 9:58
Entire loop --------- 1:30:06

This beat our old best time for this direction by 2:31!

Evidently during the run DH's foot and leg started bothering him, so he waited for me by the starting point and told me he wasn't going to run the extra today...I was dying by then, my thighs were like jello, and said I'd join him at the car for a nice ice cold G2! We called it a successful day and headed for the hot tub. Both my black toenails have finally called it quits and fallen off and when I took my shoes off today there was blood on the toe-box of my new really thick thorlo socks! Can't even tell where it came from - I'm thinking the same toenail I've been having problems with - guess I'll have to wrap it next time! Here is hoping for the 11 miler NEXT Sunday...we'll slow it down a little I think :) ...

Saturday, September 6, 2008

School bells are ringing!

I'm baaaaaack! It has been a while and several runs since I've documented anything here. As most of my loyal readers (both of them) know, school is back in session and my time is very limited. In fact it is pretty much limited to getting ready for school, being at school, planning for school, attending meetings at school, getting home from school, running, working out, or sleeping! Not much time in there for blogging.

DH and I did manage to get in our regularly scheduled Sunday morning run last week. We determined that it was time to up the mileage - even though our training schedule for the 1/2 marathon in November has us at much less than we are currently doing. We got up at 4:45 and headed for the lake. DH let me take the lead since we were going to try to do a full ten miles. The lake is a 9 mile loop, so we knew we would have to add a 1/2 mile at the end of the run and loop back to make the 10 miles we were planning for this week. Since I wear the Garmin and usually finish behind him he needed to know where to turn around. I was really planning to slow the pace a little knowing we were going to try for a record length...don't exactly know what happened there though....Here are the splits

Mile 1 - 10:28
Mile 2 - 10:11
Mile 3 - 10:16 Stopped here and discussed that we were going too fast :)
Mile 4 - 10:50
Mile 5 - 11:00
Mile 6 - 10:49
Mile 7 - 11:06
Mile 8 - 11:06
Mile 9 - 11:09
Mile 10 - 10:46
finish - 0:26

I was pretty proud of the consistency of the run - and of the fact that we actually completed the 10 miles the first time we tried! We ran a 31:59 5K, a 1:05:52 10K, and ran the entire 10:04 miles in 1:48:12. Just a little over what we ran the 9 miles in when we first started. The amazing thing is that the entire run felt pretty good, and this was going around the lake where for mile 5 your are pretty much running uphill the entire mile...I much prefer running around the other direction...which is our plan for tomorrow - we'll have to see if we can improve our time! :) Wish us luck! The nicest thing is that we really did run together the entire 10 miles. I helped him pick up his beginning pace, he helped me finish strong! Hmmmmmm sounds like we might be a team!!!!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

What a difference a day makes!

I didn't EVEN post about my last run. It was a treadmill run from hades! I was all psyched up to have a great PR run, well maybe just a great run, but it was CARP! After a mile and a half of a 30 minute "easy" training run I was flat out burned! I had to turn it into an interval run because my body felt like it was made from lead from the waist down. I just wanted to cry! I didn't of course because who wants to walk through the gym with mascara running down your face and spotting your awsome, wicking, singlet?!?

Anyway. Today was to be a 35 minute run (Training for the SA Half). I have a meeting with my new team tonight so DH and I got up at 4:30 to run. It was only 78 degrees out! COOL! We decided to run around the block to the right this morning, which means we have more downhill early! Whoo Hoo! COOL and DOWN...Double score!

I really wanted to see if I could do the 5K in under 30 again...I have managed to do that one time in my very short running career. So I took off at a pretty decent did help to know that I would be going down the big hill very quickly. The first mile felt wonderful. The second was a little harder - but then that would be where most of the mile was going back UP the hill! The third mile was a better mix of up and down, but by then I was so wiped out I just wanted to be done with it, lol.

Here is how I did:

Mile 1 : 9:25 (I TOLD you it was mostly DOWN!)
Mile 2: 10:02
Mile 3: 9:44

and I did the last .19 at a 9:50 pace

A total of 3.19 miles in 31:02. Pretty exciting to see those 9's in there. I MAY just be able to beat that 30 minute mark at the 5K in September ... IF it cools down and the course is mostly DOWN that is!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Beating your time from last week ~ Priceless is getting kinda scary around here. I'm starting to do things like track my my splits...try to beat the time I did last week....think about speeding on hills...What is going on?!? Is this some weird disease? I think it might be the disease called RUNNING!

We went back out to White Rock Lake again today. I was really tired. I didn't sleep as well last night, and we certainly weren't as well prepared this week as we were last week. We actually hit the snooze once! By the time we both got ready and got on the road it was already 5:30 instead of 5:00, so we had lost a half hour of cool time.

We started our run at about 6:00. There was more wind this week and the temp was in the mid-80's. There were also a TON of gnats out for the first couple of miles! GROSS!

My main goal this week was to improve on my 11:00 mile goal from the week before, so I set myself up to try to keep at a 10:45 pace. I think if I can just inch it up from week to week I will have to keep improving, right? DH took off pretty quickly, and I did a fair job of keeping up with him for the first couple of miles. But I started to worry about dying at the end so I slowed my pace a little. Now, for those that don't know - DH is 6'6" and I am 5"5 (if I stretch a little, lol) so my stride just isn't quite as long as his normally...I have to stretch it out to stay with him!

I checked our time at about the 5K mark and we were doing OK...about 33:05. Not good if all we were running was a 5K, but pretty good when you are doing 9 miles! I checked again at the 10K mark hoping that we would be a little under our time of 1:07:45 from the week before. There it was! 1:06:09, we had shave off a minute and a half! We were doing better!

I grinned at DH and told him we only had 3 more miles to go. Once again my goal was to simply beat our time from last week of 1:39:28. I was again trailing DH, but holding my own...specially after I thought I was going to have to stop and walk around mile 7. I just tried really hard to keep him in sight. He finished and kind of looped around and came back to get me. (He really didn't have to come back very far at all.) He helped me pick up the pace to finish strong and I stopped the Garmin at 1:37:37. A full 1:51 faster than last week. That works out to 48:06 for the first 4.55 miles, and 49:31 for the last 4.55 miles...pretty consistent. Now I'll have to start working on a negative split!

I did notice a few more things this week as well. This week we went forwards around the lake as opposed to going backwards like we did last week. Last week I was amazed at the split for Mile 5 ~ a 10:38 time. Well, this week I found out why...It was almost all downhill! The very last part of that mile, going that direction, is the spillway which is a pretty steep climb. This week we had the steep drop at the beginning of that mile, then the LONG climb for the last part of the mile...and we still did it in 10:26! I guess I did learn something from those hills last week. I'm anxious to get back out there next week and see if I can improve that mile split even more!

I do seem to be getting much quicker on the hills but the flats sometimes drag me down. I'm very glad I have the Garmin, it really keeps me focused. I did feel my toe swelling about mile 5 but toughed it out. By the time I got to the car I had a blister that had popped. This new one is on my fourth toe on my right foot. I think DH and I are going to our favorite running store today to check and see if they can recommend some socks for me so I can stop this toe damage before it gets any uglier!

Next week...goal 10:35 splits (at least 3 - 4 of them!!!)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Tough Enough

Yesterday was our LCWO...I knew we were going to run for about an hour, so I set a mini goal for myself...5 miles. I wasn't going to speed through this one. I learned last Sunday that my "comfortable pace" is about 11:00 minute miles so 5 miles should have been WAY doable.

We started running on the treadmill...set for 60 minutes...and I was trying a 5.7 pace (not 5.7 minutes, but 5.7 mph :) ... I ran that for about a mile (10:35) and then dropped to a 5.6 pace. I stayed there...about 2 miles in I wanted to walk soooooo bad. I had to really kick myself mentally...

OK, you KNOW you can run a 5K without stopping... There is NO excuse for you to be walking before you get to 3.1 miles girl, so just kick it and put one foot in front of the other and GO! At 3.1 miles again I wanted to just stop and walk, but I told myself that I could at least go for 4 the time I had done the 4 miles I convinced myself that there just wasn't that much more time - I should just gut it out and finish.

I did! I ran the entire hour, 5.75 miles... not the best I've ever done, but the first time I've been mentally tough enough to talk myself through the run. That was a major mental victory for me and I'm hoping that it will help me through some of the early morning, or hot runs I have coming up...and if I can continue that mental toughness I know it will come in handy for some of my races I have coming up too!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

I Ran The Rock

Today in an effort to make it to church to see our sweet grandbabies DH and I hauled our booties outta bed at 4:30 AM to go out to White Rock Lake for our long run of the week. Now you may or may not remember that we ran the Rock last weekend for the very first time and I thought that I was going to DIE! I also have lost one toe nail and will probably lose two more for my trouble! Needless to say I went out there today with a LOAD of determination and two goals in mind.

Goal number 1: Run outside for a minimum of 6 miles WITHOUT WALKING!!! Now I have done this a few times indoors on the treadmill, but I had NOT accomplished it outside EVER!

Goal number 2: Beat our previous time of 1:44:22 (or an average pace of 11:32).

We got to the lake and actually started our run at 5:49 AM. It was already about 84 degrees outside and do you want to know something else about 5:49 is still DARK outside! Makes it kinda hard to pace yourself with your Garmin when you can't see it...and of course, despite reading a post earlier this week about the fact that Garmin does have a backlight I totally forgot to check and see how to USE it!

I ran the first two miles "blind", but that's OK I ran them. It was actually pretty awsome running because this time I wanted to make sure I saw something other than the pavement. I looked up as I topped one of the hills and saw a beautiful sunrise reflecting off of a perfectly calm and still lake! Breathtaking! There were fishermen out in boats, waders, and fishing from the shore. I saw ducks, geese, and squirrels.

At the three mile mark we stopped at a water fountain to hydrate and I was still feelin' pretty good. I hadn't been struggling for my breath as I had been on my last "Rock" test and my legs felt awsome. So off we went again. At 4.25 we passed DS going the other direction. He had left the house after us, started later than us, but wasn't tooooooo far ahead of us...another positive to put in my head for this run!

I knew I was going to make my first goal when I looked at Garmin at the 5 mile mark and it told me that I had just completed a 10:38 mile. Whoa! Didn't feel like a As it turned out that would be my fastest split - but it was between mile 4 and 5! NOT at the beginning of the run ~ AND I still felt GOOD!

I kept my eye on Garmin and suddenly there it was - 6 miles completed and I hadn't walked a step! I finished a 10K in my normal time: 1:07:45, but I had done it with no walking and I was still feeling fairly strong. This is encouraging that perhaps when I actually run my next 10K in October I can be a little faster. I simply had to see how far I could make it without walking and I would have a new "BEST". (The farthest I had ever run on a treadmill without walking was 8 miles...I was secretly hoping to be able to at least make that on an outdoor run as well.)

I felt really strong and good until about mile is when my legs started letting me know they were there, and my breathing became a bit more labored, but I pushed on. At mile 7.72 you have to go up this slow grade...a killer at the end of the run but I was determined. I was sooooo close to my goal. I finally reached the top of the hill and started down running as fast as I could. DH was at the bottom of the hill waiting for me patiently. As I crossed the "finish line" and stopped my Garmin he said, "Congratulations, you just ran the Rock". I was soooooo happy because yes, I. RAN. THE. ROCK. All 9.09 miles without walking once. A new record for me! I also did it in 1:39:28, a full 4:04 faster than a week ago.

We headed back to the car, then to the gym to shower and get ready for church. I checked out the temperature - it was up to 89 degrees. We didn't see the kiddos during church, through a sad miscommunication my DD knew we were going to go running but didn't understand we were going out so early so we could still see them at church. They were kind enough to go out to lunch with us after so we could enjoy the DGKs and we had a great talk about running. Looks like one of these Sunday's DSIL may make the trek out there and run with us.

As soon as I got home I hooked up Garmin so I could check out my pace and splits:

Mile 1 : 10:55
Mile 2 : 11:13
Mile 3 : 10:52
Mile 4 : 10:50
Mile 5 : 10:38
Mile 6 : 11:00
Mile 7 : 10:54
Mile 8 : 11:20
Mile 9 : 10:55

I learned so much from this run. I really need to just go at my own pace and not worry about it so much...I can do more than I think I can...Running isn't so bad when you can breathe!

Guess I need to apply these to my next run too, huh?

Friday, August 1, 2008

Hmmm, am I a REAL runner now?!?

I'm trying to decide if losing your toenails defines you as a real runner! In a previous post I mentioned that after my 9 mile run my two middle toes were swollen and turning black and blue under the nails with blisters at the end of each toe. Yesterday I was sitting at the computer and bumped my foot. I reached down to massage my aching toes and one of my toenails came completely off - the toe right next to my big toe! So now I have 1 toenail off and two black toenails....quite attractive, NOT! I've just about decided that this could be a break even proposition....the extra money I'm spending on good running shoes and bandaids will be recouped because I will not pay for a pedicure when I only have 6 toenails! I'll probably save money by wearing tennis shoes all the time too, no need to buy flip flops or pretty sandles to show off your pretty toes either, LOL!

Tonight I learned a hard lesson about hydration. I spent the day at my DD's (Dear Daughter's) babysitting my grandson while she and the girls went to Vacation Bible School. We went to lunch and then when we got back to her house we were looking at her homeschool curriculum until my DH called and told me it was time to pick him up from work...we had totally lost track of time! I didn't drink any water at all all day. DH and I went straight to the gym and hit the treadmill...I died at 2 miles...and I was doing so good too...9:50 pace - feeling pretty good...but at two miles I couldn't breathe and my legs were starting to cramp up, because we hadn't stopped anywhere I had no bottled water and I was dry, dry, dry. I ended up walking and running to finish out my 45 minutes (47 with cooldown) and could only manage 4.51 miles. Before I run on Sunday I will for sure and certain hydrate well before the run and hydrate during the run and hydrate after the run. Lesson learned!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Early Morning Musings

Well, we did it! Got up at 5:00 this morning and ran our little hearts out! I really wasn't sure about the pounding on my not-so-little feet, but they did OK. My back started out stiff, but loosened up and I just kept putting one foot in front of the other.

I do have a question for you runners out there though. When is this supposed to start feeling good? I keep waiting. Is there a time? A distance? A miracle? When I first started running I kept hearing about the runner's high...the endorphins that kick in and make you feel so good. I didn't feel it when I started running from fire hydrant to fire hydrant and they said "run farther". I didn't feel it when I ran a mile and they said "run farther". I didn't feel it running a 5K and they said "run farther". I didn't feel it when I ran a 10K and they said "run farther". I didn't feel it when I ran 9.05 miles Sunday either...I am REALLY hoping I feel it sometime during my training for the 1/2 marathon I've signed up for in November! Don't get me wrong. I enjoy running to a certain extent. It isn't easy for me, I struggle mightily, but I do enjoy getting out there and being active. I really enjoy the races. There is such camaraderie out there with the racers and spectators and volunteers. It just makes you kind of smile inside even when your thighs are on fire and your calves are so knotted up you are sure you aren't going to be walking anywhere for the next week after the race.

Anyway, I ramble, on with this mornings run. It was really humid and there was lightening in the sky far, far away. Looked pretty cool though! We took off from the house for our little run around the block. If we go twice around our block it turns out to be 3.19 miles...a good distance for us. This morning we did the first mile in 10:12. Not too bad, but I think I could have done a little better if my back hadn't been so stiff. Mile two was my favorite...we did it in 9:53. I am so proud of that little single digit in front of the colon. We have worked really hard for that! Mile 3 we hit the hill at the backside of our path again and being the last mile it REALLY slowed us down. We posted a 10:23 there. Then it was the final .19 which was pretty much all downhill and it showed on the 8:45 pace! Gotta love it! All in all we did the 3.19 miles in 32:08 for an average pace of 10:04. We finished together, which is always cool. Next week I want to bring it in under 32 and we'll work from there! Gotta run...

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Running on...

Yesterday was our Day of Rest. I pretty much did that too, lol! Of course I did the day to day stuff...but stayed away from the exercise. I actually thought about asking y'all for some extra credit since I thought about running. You know...Teacher + Summer = No Thinking. If that is the case then Teacher + Summer + Thinking About Running = Extra Credit...or at least credit for letting it run across my mind, LOL!

Today was a day for the upper body ciruit. I was planning on running after the circuit, but my toes are still so sore. The skin under and around the nail is turning black and the toes themselves look a little swollen. They feel pretty good until I bang them against something, or the dog steps on them! Anyway, we were getting ready to go the club and I slipped on my running shoes and told DH, "No running tonight for me...I can feel my toes rubbing the tops of my shoes!" So.....I think we are going to go ahead and run in the morning ~ that is the plan anyway. We'll have to wait and see if we can get up early enough to do it!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Garmin run

Today I got to test out my new Garmin for REAL. DS, DH, and I all got up at 5:00 AM and after a little nourishment headed out for White Rock Lake. The trail around the lake is 9 miles long and thus would be the longest recorded run for both DH and me. (For sure the longest - my Nike+ told me I ran over 11 mies! LOL)

DS is in the middle of training for a marathon so his training run would be quite different from ours! He needed to run "slow" so he said he'd stay with us - little whipper-snapper! However, his slow is about as fast as I can go 10:00 - 10:30 minute miles.

We did pretty good for the first 3.5 miles and stayed within sight anyway. It was cool to be able to look down at the Garmin and see how fast (on average) I was going and how far. After about 4 miles I had to start taking walk breaks. It really bummed me out because I don't have to do it nearly as often on the treadmill and I always feel I should be stronger. We finished the 6.2 of a 10K in about the same time we finished the one we ran in Dublin in June...right at about 1:07...

From there, for me it was downhill. My "laps" (miles) got slower and final mile was at a 12:49 pace. I can almost WALK that fast. I need a LOT more practice to get ready for both my 10K in October AND my half in November. I hope it cools down considerably between now and then as I really think that will help. We did finish the 9.05 miles in 1:44. Not bad for a first try I guess. Gives me something to gage progress with anyway.

I don't know how other runners write such great reports on their runs. They all talk about all the things they see as they run. If I tried to do that you would get a great report on the asphalt and my shoes. I do look at the trail - but all I see is exactly what is in front of me - I hope this gets better with time as well.

I did have one experience that was pretty new for me. As we crossed the bridge at about 8.5 miles in I couldn't feel my legs anymore. It was a very bizzare feeling - kinda like floating, but not really. I'll tell you what though...I can sure feel my toes tonight! I have two tonails with blisters around and under them. The third toe on each foot. Wierd huh? I would think that I would have trouble with my Big toe, or my long toe which is right next to it...why the third toe? Oh well...they'll either get better or fall off...either way they'll quit hurting!

I'm looking forward to my next Garmin run soon!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Mundane "stuff" day

Today has simply flown by believe it or not. Started out by going to my WW meeting. Why is it that I seem to be the only person in the world that can run for 90 minutes, catch a 1500 calorie deficit and still gain a pound? It is amazing to me!

WW was a riot as we talked about simple acknowlegement of tiny, itty-bitty successes along the journey and some of us got a little out of control, for example when one of the ladies said to get your toenails painted...we were all laughing out loud at what the guys in the room were saying about THAT. Thank heavens we have an awsome group in our meeting that aren't afraid to laugh at themselves at every is what keeps DH and I coming back week after week!

DH and I then headed over to the gym for our upper body circuit. No run with it today since tomorrow is our long run and we want to save our legs. (I wonder if we could come up with a "Save Our Legs Charity 5K". All donations gladly accepted!)

After a trip to the post office and Lunch at GC (Golden Corral for those of you that don't know us well)...we stopped by Costco to fill the fridge with our fruits, vegetables, milk, and FUDGE BARS! We are absolutely hooked on Healthy Choice Fudge bars. They are soooo good! We also ended up buying a new mattress topper hoping that it will help with the intermittent back pain that I suffer from. We tried it out and it seems comfortable enough in the short term but I'm holding back my final judgement until I've lain on it for 6 hours or more, LOL.

I've pretty much spent the rest of the day doing laundry and reading blogs...there are some really good ones out there. My problem is if it is one that really interests me I have this compulsion that says I must start at the first post and read THE WHOLE THING! That takes time my friends, and my books that are stacked next to my couch are beginning to protest!

The hour is getting late and that new mattress topper is beckoning, of course so is the dryer so guess I'll go finish that final load and hit the sack. 5:00 AM is early and White Rock will be calling in the morning!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Whoo Hoo!

Just got home from the gym. Well, maybe not just - I did eat some fruit and stuff before sitting down to write about tonight's awesome treadmill run. My next race is Sept. 11th, The Freedom Run in Dallas. I would really like to beat my best race time of 29:54 in that race. So, on my treadmill runs I'm trying to go faster so my little legs will maybe know what fast feels like and will really move during the race. I am also trying to add some distance at the same time...sooooooooo my runs go something like this:

First 30 minutes book it as fast as I think I can and still finish. (Stopping is NOT an option!)
Second 30 minutes try to pace it out and keep the time at about a 10:00 minute mile overall pace. (Walk only if you have to!)
Third 30 minutes try to keep your feet moving!

That is pretty much what I did tonight. I completed my 5K in 29:36 which is a new treadmill PR for me, then I slowed my pace down. Well that wasn't really working for me so I ended up doing a 4/1 run/walk. (Run for 4 minutes/Walk for 1 minute) I finished my 10K in 61:42, another PR. Finally I was going to walk the last 30 minutes. I did walk for a while, but then I got to feeling pretty good and ran the last 15 minutes. I ended up doing 2.35 miles. So overall I did 8.55 miles in 92 minutes. Not bad for an old Memaw! I told DH that once the 5K is past and we start seriously training for the 10K and half that I will slow the beginning pace down and try to bulk up my distance without walking quite so much. I KNOW I can run the entire distance...I've done it a couple of times. It is just so hard to have two goals to work towards at the same time. This is the best way I can see to do it.

Sunday we are getting up early and are going to follow DS over to White Rock Lake for an outdoor run. I get to try out my Garmin! I think the full loop is about 9 miles so that is what I think we are going to try for...this will be a distance only run. I'm not going to try to test my 5K speed at all. This one is going to be fun!

Oh yeah, Lance told me I ran my longest run tonight! Whoo Hoo!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Deep Breath....

Sometimes you just have to step back and take a deep breath. Today I had to go to my last class for my GT credit. It ended up NOT being as bad as had been advertised, and that was a major good thing. We got some good ideas to make our classes more fun for the kids, and that is also a good thing. But just so ya know...four days of ANY workshop is WAY too long! I felt like I had been beat by a stick by the time we walked out of there today.

Once home I had to fold the laundry, straighten the kitchen, check the know - the mundane, every day, can't let it go stuff. Then when DH got home from work it was time to change clothes and hit the gym. We do strength training 3 days a week (T, TH, Sat) and run on Friday and Sunday. I am trying to add a run after the strength training on Tuesday, like I did this week, since we are off on Monday and I have pretty fresh legs. I would also like to do a short run on Wednesday ~ perhaps make that a weekly outdoor run. I was going to run tonight, but after the weights I just couldn't...I was spent...finished....stick a fork in me... DONE!

Friday's are what we call our LCWO - Last Chance Work Out. This is because we know that on Saturday Morning we will be going in to the Weight Watchers meeting and facing the scale...Friday night is our last chance to sweat off any poundage we can with a MAJOR cardio workout. This is actually becoming one of my favorite workouts of the week (shhhhhh, don't tell DH he might up the mileage again, lol). We are also going to try making Sunday a long run outdoors. As you can probably tell we are still working on all this trying to get the kinks is exciting to step back every once in a while, take a deep breath, and see how far we have come both literally and figuratively.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Cool Tools

Today I got the opportunity to try out my newest toy~my Garmin. DH and I waited until about 8:00 pm to go for our brisk walk around the block so I could see if I could get the Garmin to work. DS (Dear Son) was kind enough to show me how to get it all started. I hit the start button and off we went! Around our block ended up being 1.58 miles. We walked it in 23:22 with an average pace of 14:39. So much GREAT information!

Once we finished our walk I came in and uploaded the information to the software. Hmmmmm, OK, it took a bit for me to figure out what I was looking at, and once again it was DS to the rescue. He came in and showed me how to look at only one data graph at a time so I would know what I was seeing. That was pretty cool.

THEN I wanted to try out some new software I had found on the web to try to get even MORE information. So DH helped me download the software from the website and I installed SoftTracks. We got that up and running and I imported the data from my Garmin. It was REALLY simple you ask? Well, I did it MYSELF! I didn't need help from DH or DS! This software allows me to take the satellite information from my Garmin and look at it with Google maps, an arial view, or a topographical map...just to name a few functions. I can keep my runs in different folders, I can track my activity by week and month...I haven't even begun to explore all the capabilities! It was just the coolest thing for me to be able to look at the simple route around the block on a Google map when I didn't have to do any more than click on the title of the type of map I wanted to see!

Now I ask you, aren't those some COOL TOOLS!?!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Thanks Lance!

Have you ever had one of THOSE days?!? Today was one of those for me. I was in my second day of class~a training class on differentiation for the gifted and talented children in the classroom. For me, any day in training is just takes so much to stay mentally focused and attentive that by the time class was over I was just wiped OUT! I came home and thought about what our training was to be tonight. Ahhhhhhh upper body circuit. Tough, but doable. I checked e-mail, read a few of my favorite blogs, and almost fell asleep at the computer. I picked up my cell (to wait for DH to call and let me know he was on his way home) and went to the living room to veg out a reality I was hoping I could catch a quick cat nap and mabe re-energize. Got the call, was ALMOST dozing, when I just about jumped out of my skin! WHAT was that? Something had "swished" across my foot. AH HA! There sat the dog with a VERY guilty look on his face...he had been licking my bare foot!!! Well, no chance for a cat nap now! My heart was going to take all the time I had just to get back to a normal pulse again. I just wasn't sure how this "exhaustion" was going to affect my workout! Once DH got home we quickly changed into our workout clothes and headed toward the gym. We did our upper body circuit and I headed for the treadmill. I had my "trusty" Nike+ with me so I plugged in and took off. I started off at my "new" pace I'm shooting for (about 9:40) but after a quarter mile I knew this was NOT going to be the night. I felt like I was made of lead from the waist down. My legs were sluggish - as if I were running through water - I wasn't sore, I wasn't breathing irregularly, I just didn't have anything in my legs! My co-worker that runs triathalons told me once this was called "carrying the bear". Well, I wasn't going to give up so I just slowed the pace down a little and kept going. I would shift from about a 10:30 to a 9:50 pace and anywhere in between. Whatever I did I simply wasn't going to give up and walk if I could help it. I finally was able to speed it up when I only had a half mile left in my 5K and I finished up with a treadmill time of 30:42 (Nike+ time was 31:42 for 3.13 miles). Not bad, but not quite what I was hoping for tonight.

Now, I bet you are wondering why I titled this "Thanks Lance!" With the Nike+ when you run faster or farther than you ever have different sports figures come on and tell you what a great job you are doing. I haven't heard from anybody in a L-O-N-G time, lol. Here I was tonight, feeling bummed because I know I can do better when what do I hear? Lance Armstrong saying "Congratulations! You have just completed 250 miles!" Now, no matter what, THAT is something you can be proud of~Ok, maybe I can keep doing this after all...and so I say with uplifted spirits, Thanks, Lance!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Real Mileage Here I Come!!

SURPRISE!! Last night we got online and ordered my Garmin from Amazon. Expected delivery date was to be July 23. When I got home from class today THERE IT WAS!! I am so excited. I spent the afternoon reading up on the documentation while it charged. I just now got everything set up: the satellite aquired, the heart rate monitor synched, my profile set up, and now I'm ready to go...of course now it is 9:00 pm and it is too LATE to go~but I'm ready for the next time I DO go out. I probably won't get to use it until Wednesday since tomorrow is strength training. Wednesday is supposed to be a Day Of Rest (DOR) but I'll probably go for a brisk walk just to see what the Garmin is like~perhaps walk the small trail here that I've run before and check out the mapping and mileage functions. Can you tell I'm excited? I'll let you know how it works out later!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

How far did I go?

They say running gets easier the more you do it. I'm still waiting, LOL. Tonight DH (Dear Husband) and I hit the trails. There are some small park trails (paved hike and bike trails) not to far from our home and we headed out to run about 6:30 this evening. Once there we found the section we wanted to try and headed out. Now DH is pretty tall, and I am pretty short. His stride is about 1 and 1/2 of mine, so it was no big surprise that he was quickly out in front. Things were going pretty smoothly until I rounded a corner and saw a fork in the trail ~ not a sign of DH anywhere...not even the sweat droplets I had noticed earlier on the pavement! Crud! Now what do I do ~ go right, go left, stay put??? I decided to act like the lost child I felt inside and stay put...sure enough a few minutes later DH came back down the trail looking for me. We ran back up to the end of the trail and rested. (This is when I hit pause on the Nike+ so at least my time will be accurate - more on that in a minute)

After I caught my breath we took off running back to the start again. This was a little easier as it was more downhill than up. By the time I made it back to the start I thought I was done! But we go again. This time we walked a ways until I really caught my breath and then off we went again. Once again I start up my Nike+ and run the best I can. This part is uphill and I feel like I'd probably do a better job if I were just walking fast, lol. Hmmmmm I think, how fast (slow) is this pace (shuffle)? So I punch the button and WHOA ~ the voice in my head tells me I am doing a 6:30 mile!!! Shoot, what's so hard about running a 6:30 mile if I can walk it that fast? LOL! Well, I just keep shuffling along at my 6:30 pace and make it back to the end of the trail where DH is waiting for me. We rest a bit again and agree to go ahead and run back to the start point one more time.

Now I didn't mind this section at all. It once again was mostly downhill, it was mostly in the shade, AND it had finally started to cool down. I KNOW the temps had to be in the 90's when we started out! I checked my pace again and the voice in my head said 9:47 minute miles...that sounded a little more realistic anyway! By time I caught up to DH my final numbers were 5.35 miles in 5:49 for an average pace of 9:29. Dh's told him he only ran 4.38...since we were running together on the same trails you can see where we might get a little confused. The best we can figure is we honestly ran about 5 miles in 5:35.

I am sooo glad that DH has now ordered me a Garmin. Now don't get me wrong. I like my Nike+ ... it is even fairly accurate on the treadmill...but for my short, stubby legs; and the way my stride changes constantly as I run, it simply isn't very accurate when I'm outside running. Not on trails. Not during races. And after all, isn't that what all this is about? How far did I go today? (Obviously I don't really have to worry about how fast, lol...) How long did it take me to get where I am? Did I do better on this run than the last time I ran this same path? I do love listening to the music and military cadences that DH loaded up for me. But since my regular headphones gave up the ghost last run, and the regular earbuds that come with the iPod won't stay in my ears, I actually got to enjoy some of the regular nature sounds this time. Perhaps I'm growing out of my Nike... We'll soon see. Run on!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Finally Made It!

Well today was weigh in day. I have been nervous and impatient about this. Last Saturday I was 0.2 lbs away from my WW goal weight. I have been up and down all week according to my scales and I really wasn't expecting anything stupendous today at weigh in ~ but the name tag my DH made for me says it all!
Once they got it across to my little pea-brain that I had actually met goal I jumped up and nearly tackled DH giving him a big hug!!! I'm glad we were the only ones there, it might have been embarrassing otherwise!

Since December 1, 2007, I have lost a grand total of 37 pounds! Running has REALLY helped me get there! Last night at LCWO I actually set a new PR for both a 5K and a 10K. Now, you must realize that this was on a treadmill, but I ran the 5K in 29:44 ~ 10 seconds faster than my previous best. I had already set eaverything up to run for an hour and I finished 6.21 miles in 62 minutes. I was so excited...that was about 5 minutes faster than I ran the 10K in June! DH and I know we need to start running more outside, the heat here is a killer and your body needs to adjust...I also need to adjust to the terrain and get my Nike + synched so it is more accurate. During the Dublin 10K it said I ran over 7 1/2 miles (HA!) We are planning to do that, but for now - just watch me float around on a runner's high!!!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Hooray for Me!

I am very new to this~but thought it was about time for me to start getting my thoughts about life out there for whoever wonders what actually goes on in this pea-sized brain of mine. This blog will be mostly about the running life I am working on...but the rest of my life will be incorporated here as well, I am sure!

Since this is my first post I thought I'd tell you a little about myself. In November of last year my husband and I went to our college reunion. It was a lot of fun and we got to see a lot of our friends. It was also a wake-up call. We recieved a picture of the group. I was shocked to see what I looked like. I nearly cried - I was so embarrassed by my weight. The "fix" came over Thanksgiving. We went to my brother's house for a big family get toghether where we visited with my niece. She had lost 20 lbs with Weight Watchers. On the way home we discussed it and determined that we would start on December 1. We did, and thus began this journey.

We were encouraged by both our son and son-in-law to start running. Soooooo Jan. 1 we started. We picked a race - The Cowtown 5K. It was far enough in the future we thought we could at least work up to finish it - even if we had to walk some! We did finish and we were hooked! Since that first 5K I have run the Butterfly Boogie 5K, the Springfest 5K, the Dr. Pepper 10K, and the Freedom Run 5K. We (my husband and I) are in training for our next run - the Freedom Run in Dallas in September. I am also working very diligently to lose the last 0.2 lbs to reach my Weight Watcher goal weight. Yes...I have managed to get THAT close to goal. Wish me luck. Tonight is our LCWO (Last chance work out where all bets are off and I try to sweat off whatever I need to lose to make that goal. I am too close to stop now. This is the closest to goal I have ever been on my weight journey and I give running (and support from DH) the credit.

I'm off to run~trying for over 5 miles tonight. I'll let you know how it went!

About Me

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This is about my life. My life as a wife. My life as a mother. My life as a Memaw. My life as a teacher. My life as a runner. My life such as it is.