Tipping over …

… blink … blink … nod … snore … startle … blink … blink … nod … snore … startle … blink … blink … nod … snore … startle … blink … blink … nod … snore … startle …

Well, I hope you all had a day where you weren’t so tired that you felt like you were about to tip over!!!

I’ve decided …

I guess I’ll just make it official … I WILL be running the full marathon at Ventura. I was reminded by a teammate and running mentor that BIG REWARDS come from BIG RISKS … and she’s right. It’s so amazing to me that someone can pick just the right words that help you see everything so clearly.

I recently wrote about Miley Cyrus’s song The Climb. There has been one part of that song that I play in my head over and over again. It’s when she sings about taking chances.

Chances are like risks. Sometimes we take them for all the wrong reasons. But sometimes we take them for all the right reasons. Well, I’m going to take a CHANCE and RISK failure. I may not PR that day … but I’m going to give it my best shot to do so. This race has become so much more to me than a quest for a new personal record. It’s about realizing sometimes you succeed … and sometimes you are just meant to learn.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you finally decide!!!

16 miles and a leap of faith …

Tomorrow I am running 16 miles. From here on out, if I continue to train for the full marathon at Ventura (goodness don’t get me started again, HA!) my miles will reach levels I have grown not to fear, but to respect. And my training becomes a whole new “can of worms”. Every long run detail becomes so much more important. Preparation … essential. Recovery … necessary. Fatigue and a certain level of discomfort are guaranteed. Determination is a must. Regardless of how fast I end up running, it gets hard. Really hard.

But I love it. I look forward to the challenge and enjoy the thrill of pushing my limits. Week after week I will go to sleep knowing I DID MY BEST under the circumstances I given. It’s a satisfaction I can’t really explain … but it keeps me coming back for more.

I am hopeful things will go well for me over the next few weeks. That my foot feels healthy and my pace gets better. Taking into consideration all the muscle fatigue that accumulates will make this evaluation a little tricky. But that’s when my biggest challenge in this training will come … and I’ll be ready.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you are ready to take a leap of faith!!!

A whole lotta fun …

This evening my oldest daughter, Sidney, and I went to our favorite local running store for their monthly Adventure Run. It’s basically a scavenger hunt for tickets. You have an hour to collect as many tickets as you can from the participating stores, restaurants, gyms, etc. You can earn extra tickets at places that make you do push-ups, jumping jacks and jump rope. Then the running store holds a raffle at the end with all sorts of prizes. We haven’t been in a very long time, and boy, did we miss it! It’s always a great time despite the fact that we usually get lost, or turned around and can’t find the check points. We ARE NOT very good at it and I am sure we are quite a sight, but we don’t care :)

Well, I hope you all had a day where you had a whole lotta fun!!!

Yoga and a hip replacement …

Apparently my yoga instructor introduced a new vinyasa called LET ME SEE IF I CAN MAKE YOU WALK LIKE A 90 YEAR OLD PERSON MADE OF GRANITE LATER. If she did … it worked. I thought my arms took the brunt of today’s class. Ooooooh was I wrong! VERY WRONG! Everything I use to walk feels like it’s on fire! I am SO STIFF and SORE … and I walk funny. No really … it’s comical! One word … OUCHIE!

Well, I hope you all had a day where you didn’t feel like you were going to need a hip replacement!!!

Explain yourself …

OK … I will be the first to admit I am not one for explaining myself. If I do something or plan to do something it is between me, God, my family and my closest friends. I base my decisions on what is best for my family, myself and our well being. Minds. Bodies. And souls. No one ever really dares ask me to explain myself. I’m assuming because they know that they will get an ear full. A talking to. AND a humbling look at their own lives, given to them by me, if they did. I also think that for the most part people know I’m a genuine person. I am what I am. You get what you get. I do what I do. No harm, no foul intended. Yada yada yada. HA!

Anyway, today I feel the need to, in fact, explain myself … and I’m not entirely happy about it. But here goes.

I am a distance runner. I train … and I train HARD. I am not the fastest in the herd but I am, for the most part, usually pleased with my race performances. I take almost every race VERY seriously. ESPECIALLY MARATHONS. They ARE NOT frivolous events for me. I respect the distance and the course I’m running. Every. Damn. Time.

Don’t get me wrong, I have no issue with casual runners, people who don’t race, or people who run races just for the fun of them. But for me, it is a whole different ball of wax.

When it comes to MY performance on a race course I have certain expectations of myself as an athlete. Expectations I hold for ME and ME alone. These expectations are MINE. No one else’s … MINE. I do not expect anyone to commit to their training the way I do. Our lives differ too much for that, our goals are never the same and our abilities vastly different. Who am I to say what will work best for another.

Running and racing are personal. To be critical of another runner or to attempt to THRUST personal “techniques” or “goals” upon another person just makes someone, in my opinion, look bad. It makes me question the type of “athlete” they are and wonder if they have any integrity at all. My advice to them … don’t do that … because I won’t like you anymore.

OK … onward … boy, this is a long one!

I have a goal (yes, we know crazy). I want to qualify for the Boston Marathon (ugh … she said it again). I have to run fast, albeit, “for my age”.

Will I?

Yes, one day I will.

THAT is MY PRIZE and it REALLY means something to me. My reasons for wanting this are personal. I will blog about them one day, I’m sure. But that day is not today. All I know is that I don’t care if anyone understands. I do. My family and closest friends do … and that is all that matters to me. How I ultimately pull it off is MY JOURNEY.

Again, MINE.

I had hoped that my first chance to BQ (or at least to reach my stepping stone of a 4:10 finish) would be at the Ventura Marathon. Sadly I have had three separate injuries since March. Something I have been very public about discussing. I’ve also been dealing with a flare up of the arthritis in my feet. Something I haven’t really discussed openly. I’ve lived with it for so long I sorta forget I even have it! Anyway, I had a flare up with a ridiculous amount of pain and swelling after I stopped taking glucosamine and chondrotin. Don’t ask me why I stopped, I’ve taken them for years. Dumb … that’s all I can say … DUMB!

Anyway, this has all sucked. HUGE. Has it set me back? Yes, of course. Will it stop me? No. But I am playing my training safe. I am not running nearly as fast as I was before the LA Marathon. I’m close-ish. I can feel
it. It’s in me. But I can’t guarantee myself a new PR, let alone reaching my stepping stone. Which, for some reason, I need. ME. Again, JUST ME.

So, I may not run the full marathon in Ventura now, I may run the half. A very honorable distance might I add! I have many reason as you have read for doing this. The primary reason is, of course, that I am not sure I can run the full and come out uninjured. I don’t know if my foot can handle the training I subject myself to. Again, I take it SERIOUSLY, this is NO JOKE for ME.

Let’s discuss MY training for a second … OH GOD THIS REALLY IS A LONG ONE.

I pour MYSELF into my training days. MY long run days are prepared for and run at the best level I can physically run them. I don’t walk or stop. And I’m certainly not taking the time to text my friends, Facebook my whereabouts or Instagram a cute picture of my running shoes. I am out there EARNING blood blisters and black toenails and trying not to puke! When I’m done with MY long training runs, the 18, 20, and 22-milers, I AM BEAT! With the accumulative fatigue that sets in at that point in MY training I really do feel like I ran a marathon after these runs! THREE FREAKIN WEEKS IN A ROW! But again, this is how it is for ME … and I train HARD.

OK, going back to WHY I MIGHT run the half. (Shhhhesh … FINALLY)

Another reason I may chose to run the half marathon is because I don’t see the need to put my family out on those long run training days if my performance isn’t going to be what I want it to be by race day. I am pretty darn wiped out on my long run days (BECAUSE I TRAIN HARD AND I DON’T TAKE TIME FOR A SELFIE) so I miss out on 2-3 Saturdays in one month’s time! I just hate the thought of missing that precious time with my family just so I can say I “ran” another marathon. That seems like it would be a little selfish of me if I did.

The best part about waiting for another full marathon would be that it will give me more time to focus on my first 13 miles being as solid as they were l when I ran my fastest half marathon in January. I finished just under 1:56 … and I was thrilled! I finally saw Boston as a reachable goal. Best. Runner. Feeling. Ever.

Can I run a marathon. Yep, I’ve proved that a few times over. BUT NOW I have a NEW GOAL.

ME.

MY GOAL.

MINE.

A goal I am willing to be patient for and take the time to reach … safely. At MY pace. At MY time. And under MY conditions. All the while being conscientious of and considerate to the people who will help me cross that finish line … goals achieved.

Oh and no one … needs to tell me that they know better …

Well, I hope you all have a day where you don’t feel the need to explain yourself!!!