You Know You’re a Runner When…

Hello all! Wow, it has been awhile again since I’ve posted. You would think now that my schedule has actually freed up a bit, I would be posting all the time. Just another thing I have to get used to and put more energy into now that I have the time to!

I can’t believe it is the week of my marathon! This training season went by incredibly fast, and this marathon has seriously just crept up on me. These past few days and the rest of this week will be spent with a lot of R & R…. reflection and rest!

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I really don’t quite get all of the running quotes with Ryan Gosling that are out there. I mean, if you search pinterest for Ryan Gosling and Running, you’ll be amazing at how many images come up. This one though actually had me like “Wow. That would get me to the finish line.” Not Ryan Gosling, but if Jordan was waiting for me with a puppy! I know that’s not going to happen… but hey a girl can dream ๐Ÿ™‚

This training season has probably been one of my better ones, just because I actually took it 100% serious… because lets get real… it’s 26.2 miles… you don’t mess around with that! I knew when I registered for this race that I would have to extremely dedicated and show some huge will power. Within that though, managing to still make time to go out with friends, celebrate my accomplishments, and still enjoy life outside of my training (I realize some people are probably like.. it’s just running, you can still have a life. Train for a marathon… even a half marathon.. and tell me a few weeks into how that whole “You can still have a life” thing is working out for you.. ๐Ÿ™‚ )

This training season could not have went any better for me though… I still learned a lot though. Such as switching shoes up mid training season, and how important it is to find the shoe that is right for you. Also, how important it is to find the fueling process that works for you and what your body needs, and stick to it! Thankfully I’ve had three training seasons prior to this, so I already knew what fuel I liked to use and what my stomach could and could not handle. But training for a marathon requires a lot more fuel and hydration… but I think I definitely found what is going to work for me!

The only akdjflskjdflkasjdf in my training season for this race is my recent relationship with shin splints. A few weeks ago I went home and it was on the weekend of my second 20 miler. Now most training schedules only have you hitting 20 miles once, but since this is my first marathon and I’m slightly freaking out… I knew I wanted to hit 20 twice to know I could get past that wall. My first 20 was fantastic… second one? Not so much. I talked about that in my last post though so I’ll save you those details… but that run resulted in some serious pain and discomfort in my legs. After doing some research and looking up some information on Hal Higdon’s website, I realized it was because of the terrain I was running on and my lack of hydration. I ran the first 10 miles up at my old high school track while my brother did some cross fit stuff. Then after that I ran back to my house and my mom jumped on her bike, and I did the last 10 miles on the river trail. It was beautiful out, and not so hot (even though I definitely overdressed), and I felt great during those first 10. But the river trail was only paved for maybe a mile, and after that it was soft gravel and dirt. Since it had rained a lot that week, there were a lot of trailsย from where bikers had went, and so I was constantly shuffling my feet or moving from left to right to avoid twisting my ankle of just falling flat on my face. My shins were not too happy with me in the days to come, and I have been paying for it ever since. Also, I had my first experience with a painful toenail ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

photo 5 (1)Yup… she’s a goner. I’ve been icing like crazy, and last week I pushed my runs off a few days to give my legs a rest, while still managing to get in all of my runs. They have been feeling better, but they’re still not 100%. Since these past few weeks have been all about tapering, I’ve been trying to show them so love and attention, and I’m hoping it’s enough to get me through Saturday. This week will be spent icing, elevating, hydrating like crazy, and taking it nice and easy. Oh.. and of course eating lots of carbohydrates and protein… especially this stuff..

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Seriously… this is amazing. Fun fact, it actually is made in the city I’ll be running my marathon in. I mean it’s only right then that I eat at least a jar of this before Saturday.

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Needless to say though, I am super excited for this race! It’s in a gorgeous city and it runs right along a bay the entire time. It is a down and back, but I train in and out of the same suburbs all the time so that will not be a problem for me. The weather is supposed to be perfect… and it’s the holiday weekend! I still need to sit down and figure out all of the fine details for the race, and write my list down of everything I need, and check it twice since I’ll more than likely forget something. I didn’t miss a single run this year, and minus these last couple of weeks and my shins… my running form and time have really improved. I’m not going into this race with any time goals (even though in my head I’d like to be under 4 hours and 30 minutes lol), I just want to finish the race without stopping. I really don’t think that is impossible considering I ran my first 20 with no problem and felt fantastic, and I’m hoping I’ll be hydrated and fueling will go well that I won’t hit that wall! I have a feeling I’ll be using a lot of mantras and probably swearing up a storm in my head after about 18 miles ๐Ÿ™‚

4c4c1fe5775b323aa2c4575a482f477eThis would seriously be the worst thing that could happen!

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I really knew though that I was a runner this past week when I had been counting down the days until I could see race day in the 10 day forecast. It’s supposed to be 65 and sunny… that sounds like a perfect day to run 26.2 miles ๐Ÿ™‚

FYI.. I’ve been volunteering for a non-profit organization called Girls On The Run, which is a phenomenal program that aims to inspire girls between 3rd and 8th grade to be confident and healthy with themselves and who they are inside and out, while following a curriculum over the course of 10 weeks that ultimately prepares them to run a 5k. I was placed at a public Lansing school working with 6th – 8th graders, and ummm… needless to say it was quite the experience. I had never really “coached” before, and after this experience I have some huge respect for all of my middle school coaches. I enjoyed and loved every minute of it, but they definitely challenged us as coaches and pushed our patience a few times… but isn’t that what they’re supposed to do? That’s what I did at that age lol. Anyways… I digress. This weekend these girls proved so much to themselves and to their families, and honestly to us coaches as well. I ran the race but kept going between girls, and then at about 1 mile I stuck with one of the girls on my team that was struggling with her breathing. We kept finding pinpoints to walk to and then to start running, and it definitely helped her. She did so amazing and to cross the finish line with her was probably one of the greatest moments in my life. The smiles on their faces when they sprinted across that finish line was worth every challenge that we faced as coaches. These girls not only pushed themselves in practice, but they pushed themselves outside of their comfort zone. They became friends outside of practice and were so encouraging towards one another, I definitely could learn a thing or two from them. If you have some time, you should check out this organization. It’s nation-wide and it has helped and inspired so many young girls who struggle with the same pressures that I, and I’m sure all of you faced at that age.ย http://www.girlsontherun.org/

I hope everyone has a fantastic holiday weekend, and I’ll update about my race as soon as I can, but I’m probably going to try and stay away from technology until next Tuesday. It’s the holiday weekend, I’ll be in a beautiful city and on the lake… absolutely no reason my computer or phone should even be by me!

Make it a great day ๐Ÿ™‚

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