Signed Up for Three Races

I was just saying to myself the other day that for the first time in a couple of years, I have not signed up for ANY races since the Disney Half Marathon back in February…not a one. Last year I was signing up for races every time I turned on my computer, this year nothing – not a thing – not even motivated. I have, however, trained more (and I use the term “trained” a bit loosely here) then I did in previous years. I don’t know what it was this year that prevented me, mentally of course, from signing up for a single race. I guess today was the day I decided to fix that huge wrong.

Well, today all of that changed. I signed up for not one, not two, but three races. Granted they are a bit of ways off, but it’s the small steps. Signing up for a race is motivating. It’s giving me something to actually work toward. Motivation to keep it up.  Besides RunDisney races are not particularly cheap, but I love them anyway.

I’m just glad I did it. Three races:

2016 Disney Princess Half Marathon

2016 Princess 5K

4.01K Race for Retirement (My sister told me about this one and it seems only fitting for a grandma to run a race with the word “retirement” in it.

Time to get busy….Motivation ebbs and flows.  I feel the flow coming back.

Jeff Galloway Blogger Tips

As an “official” Jeff Galloway blogger, I wanted to share some tips with you. I really need these, especially during the hot weather! How many of these injury risk habits are you guilty of? I’m sure I actually commit every single one!

Why do we get injured?

1. Be aware of irritation of weak links. The Key Weak Links are body parts where my runners tend to experience injuries are these: Knees – Feet -Calf – Achilles -Hip – Glute/piriformis/sciaticia

But the body parts that YOU need to be aware of are the sites where you are injured or suffer more aches and pains.

So if you’re sensitive to the first indication of irritation in these areas and take immediate action it’s possible to avoid injury.

2. Stress buildup due to the way we train.
• Training schedule is too intense-not enough rest between stress.
•Adverse Training Components-speed is too fast or has too much, too soon.
•Running form-too long a stride, forward lean, bouncing too high off the ground.

So staying focused on the way one runs and following these guidelines, can often allow runners to maintain a manageable increase without injury.
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Top 5 ways to avoid stress buildup-and avoid injuries

1. Take walk breaks more frequently, and run shorter run segments

2. Form: shorter stride, feet low to the ground

3. Slower long runs, with more walk breaks

4. Avoid Stretching

5. Be careful when running speed sessions

I Ran a Hill Today

It may seem like small potatoes to some, but I actually conquered a hill today. Not just any hill, but a real mountain of a hill. Whenever I leave the house, I have choices. Make a right to the track or go left for two more choices – the employee gym with a treadmill or my favorite outside path. I can reach either the mill or the path by parking in the same parking lot. Get out of the car go left to the treadmill or head right to my favorite path. The greatest feature of my favorite path is after a flat stretch there is a nice gentle downhill slope, but then you make a right turn that heads up a small incline for a bit, make another right to head back. The return trip is straight, but turns into 45+ degree incline – a great big ol’ mountain of a hill. The total trip is about 1.5 miles (There is a larger loop, that is about 3.25 miles). So typically I run/walk, get to the hill, walk up it and run on the other side. Except today, despite the 90 degree heat.

Today I not only ran the downhill, but also up the small incline (running the small incline was a first, usually I’m tired after the flat stretch and the long downhill). I make the last right turn and face the straight away to the hill. Today I was not to be defeated…I glared at the mountain hill ready for battle! You will not defeat me today, a running start, my favorite song in my ears, I headed up the hill. A third of the way up, half way up…I was going down…no…no I’m not. Then I decided to trick myself, remember those small fries and that small hamburger you ate during that 15 minute lunch break? Did you have any problem with those? No? Then you WILL get to the top of this hill grandma. You will not stop until you get to the sidewalk at the top of the hill. I did it! I conquered the hill, not only did I conquer the hill, but I took a 30 second walk break and ran the rest of the flat stretch back. Not nearly as breathless as I thought I was going to be, not nearly as tired and sore as I thought I would be. I DID IT! I conquered the hill. Happy dance time!

A Mile on Monday

I like walking. If I could put on my sneakers and walk for miles I would be perfectly happy. Not running, just walking. It clears the mind and allows me to solve so many real world issues, like which bills are coming due, should I find a plumber to fix the downstairs tub, real world problems. Unfortunately, I love entering races and I love Disney World. To guarantee at least one trip to Disney World per year, I enter the Disney races. Wait, who am I kidding? I also love the bling and the bibs make really nice wall art. Not to mention the fact that with my love of those trinkets, also comes races that have a maximum time limit.

The Disney Princess Half Marathon registration is coming up in about a month. I will register and fully intent to complete my third half marathon. I’m going to do it one step at a time, this grandma has been feeling old recently. So today, I ran a mile. Not much at all by normal standards. I looked on Facebook and saw all the runners posting 3 miles, 4 miles or 6 miles. Well today I ran a mile. I’m OK with that because I know the first step to finishing, is getting out there training and training isn’t sitting on a couch. Today one mile was better than none.

An Outside, Inside Run

An outside – inside run. Exactly what is that, you ask? I got off work late (again) today thinking that I really wanted to go for a run, but not really feeling going home, changing and heading back out. As with most days, however, after a 12 hour day all I wanted to do was curl up and continue my Blue Bloods binge marathon on Netflix. So I put on my beautiful pink Disney Princess Half Marathon t-shirt. I figured I would channel my inner princess. Don’t worry, I wasn’t running a half today, just getting out there keeping up with my training schedule.

I headed out of the door. I don’t know if there is anyone like me, I often struggle with where I’m going to go run. Do I want to run on a busy parkway? Do I want to go the track? Treadmill? The decisions, the decisions. A mile on the treadmill, a mile on the treadmill. (I have done a lot of chanting to myself today). I figured that I would head to the employee gym and just stay on the treadmill for a mile, though I wasn’t sure if that would help negate the slice of pizza, two wings and two tablespoons of garlicky couscous with feta and spinach that I had for lunch today.

The car thermometer read 87 degrees, much too hot to be outside, but when I stepped out of the car there was a beautiful breeze and the sun had an evening glow. Why go inside when I’ve got the perfect weather? I headed down to the baseball fields, through the condo complex parking lot and onto the parkway. It felt great! My one mile inside run turned into 2.8 outside. Today was a good day.

My Running Reward System

Motivation, goal setting and rewards, you have to take it where you can get it. Get motivated to get out there. Get out there, celebrate and reward yourself as you reach a milestone (remember you set the milestones). I have hereby set up the following reward system for myself (sounds so official doesn’t it? It’s not really a system, but some random thoughts).

Last week joined a running group – reward, I went to go see one of my summer blockbuster movies. (San Andreas – hey, looking at the Rock expressing emotions, also known as tears, was worth the price of admission, I didn’t think he had that range of emotions)…sorry I digress…

Ran two days this week, set my alarm and got up at 6 a.m. this morning to go to my running group for week number two – reward, second summer blockbuster (Spy).

Movie rewards will only go so far, even though they do cost a really pretty penny. I’ve decided that if I attend the running group six weeks in a row, I will reward myself with a Garmin or a new IPod. I was originally going for the Garmin, because I love my IPod nano and I use the Nike app, but I’m thinking I would love a full-sized IPod, even though my little nano isn’t anywhere near full. Perhaps I will put both on my list. One at six weeks and perhaps the other when I finally knock 1 – 2 minutes off my time. What do you think? Obviously the list is nowhere near finished and is going to require a bit more thought, but I’ve got time.

I Joined a Running Group

Figuring that I needed some help, I joined a local running group today. I’ve determined that it’s time to put some accountability in place. This particular group is getting everyone ready to run the Anthem Richmond Marathon. I’m not crazy, I am personally not training for the marathon, but they also have a half marathon and an 8K. I’m wondering though, am I just crazy enough to sign up for a half-marathon outside of Disney? I think I may just be that crazy, besides the half marathon course limit is 4 whole hours!

I digress. I joined a running group today. I must admit I was nervous in the beginning. Every time I join a group it always seems so cliquish, everyone knows each other, everyone has that “politeness”, but I never seem to fit in. Today was different, though. Of course everyone knew each other, but they made me feel so welcome. They actually spoke to me and included me in on the jokes and the memory sharing and even an invite to race in Vegas. All except one other person has run marathons and numerous half marathons, but they didn’t make me feel like the “slow one”. In fact, they gave me the biggest compliment ever – they called me a runner.