Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Coming up...

I'm marking my calendar for a 5K on June 16th. I ran this last summer with my friend (it was her first 5K!), and I'm excited about doing it again. There's a chance that some of my fiance's friends will be running it, too, which would make for quite a group.

It's just starting to get really hot and humid here in the northeast, so I have a little bit of time to acclimatize to the weather. I got out today for a brutal 6.5-miler with my running buddy and her sister, and they kicked my butt big time. I had just gone hiking yesterday (see below)

and sweated a couple pounds off and didn't quite replenish in time for the run today, so I started off dehydrated. I've never run a marathon, so I can't really say I know what hitting the wall is like, but I imagine that it's something like what I felt like today. It was in the 80s with high humidity and strong sun. I started off with my legs feeling leaden. I expected them to loosen up, but all they did was fatigue, and with every hill, my steps got smaller and smaller. I realized that I was just shuffling and took a couple of walk breaks, because I expected injuries from poor form to start cropping up. 

Anyway, I am not used to this weather. The 5k is in 2 1/2 weeks, so I'm going to use this time to try and get out for as many warm weather runs as I can. I also would love to hit the mountain or just some single track bike trails again. I love running in the woods, and the mountain running is an incredible workout, and single track running is both a workout and fun. 

Last year, when I ran my fastest 5k ever without doing any running to train for it, I realized how important cross-training is. I had done all of my exercise in the form of circuit workouts with a Wii program that featured upper body, lower body, and core exercises and cardio bursts. Those workouts did more for my running than running did, so I don't want to forget how important the total body training is for me. I also lost a lot of weight and felt better about myself than I ever had before (can I be a spokesperson for the product yet?), so I'm going to try and continue to incorporate those exercises into my routine. 

I'll be focusing a lot more on biking, too. I used to ride much more often than I do now, and I've lost a lot of my comfort on the bike. I don't know if I'll ever be comfortable enough to ride very technical trails, but I want to regain the confidence I had and build up some more so that I can go for some somewhat interesting rides with my fiancĂ©. He owns a bicycle repair shop and is an avid cyclist, and I love being able to share outdoor experiences together. I love biking so much that I want to be able to share that with him - especially since it's such a big part of his life. 

I don't know when my neck surgery is going to be (still need to go for a second opinion), and that will influence my training, but one of my main goals for the summer is to train up for a fall half marathon. Get ready for Sunday, October 14th. The big part is that I'm going to try and run it with my running buddy and her sister, who are very speedy and want to finish in under 1:50. Is that possible for me???? I don't know, but I'm keeping it in mind. I'm going to train with them on most Tuesday mornings and gradually build up my speed and endurance over the summer. In August or September, I might even try running some Yasso 800s on the track or treadmill. 

So these are the major goals right now: 
  • 5K on June 16th with friends (adjust to heat and run a time comparable to my past results)
  • Get more fully fit by training upper and lower body, core, and cardio
  • Regain confidence on my mountain bike so I can actually develop some skills
  • Increase speed and endurance enough over 4 1/2 months to run a sub-2-hour half-marathon on October 14th. 
We'll see how it goes!

Ever on.

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