December 9th 2011 and I am just finally getting used to the idea that summer is over. No more 9 p.m. excursions to the park for photo shoots or walks or runs or even just to go watch a sunset. It's dark here before 6 p.m. now and it's cold! It's not so bad when the sun is shining, even if it only makes an appearance for a brief moment on these short days, but when it is gray and oppresive along with the cold and shortness of the day, well, let's just say....the transition has been most difficult for me this year!
So, I thought I'd try to start working on some speedwork at the gym over the next couple of months since I wouldn't be getting out to the park as often for my longer slower runs. Do some weight lifting, strengthen that core. I gave up a day at work and started out faithfully with the plan to do Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at the very least. I was feeling great on the weights, but still having some issues with my right ankle/calf/knee. I did start out with my speed training and was doing pretty well, but having a difficult time making peace with the boredom of the treadmill and the pain in my right leg. I got outside to run a couple of times and this felt soooo much better, more to my taste. I decided to sign up for our mini marathon (13.1) in May and my local running group's training program. This begins in January on Tuesday evenings. I trained with them for my last half marathon and was very disciplined about making my runs. I had even done a couple of 12 mile runs, non-stop. Come time for the actual race itself, my leg was bothering me so much, I didn't get past 7 straight miles of running and walked about 5 miles of it. I was disappointed, but I did still complete it. My goal is to complete the May half marathon running the whole way. This means I will need to SUCK IT UP! and get over this whole cold thing, perhaps even see a specialist about my leg since it really does seem to be impeding my training and I don't want to do more damage.
Going to the gym and losing weight will make me stronger and make running less hard on my body. I had given running a shot a couple years ago, got in a couple of 5k races, but wasn't consistent with my training and was very sporadic with my runs, so it pretty much fizzled out until about February of this year. I began training for a 5k. I had signed up for a Warrior Dash in June with a couple of friends I had met online. Flying to PA and meeting new friends, competing in a muddy difficult obstacle course combined with a race, now THAT was an incentive for me to train and lose weight. I worked from February until June and had lost close to 40 lbs and was able to complete a 10k distance. It wasn't pretty, but it was complete!
The time came, I flew out, met my friends and had an unbelievably fun experience! So much so, that we are doing the one in Indiana in August of 2012!
So, my first year of running begins. Over the summer of 2011 I completed a Warrior Dash, 3 brutal Tuesday night trail runs, my first Triathlon, and the Indianapolis Monumental Half Marathon! Not Bad!! I am quite proud of my accomplishments! So it is very important to me NOT to let that girl down, the girl who fought so fiercly to complete each task like her very life depended on it, to never give up!
In June, my weight loss came to a screeching halt as I began training for my various races. I was more concerned with keeping the calories coming to keep myself fueled and to keep going. I held pretty steady within about a 5 lb range. After about 3 weeks at the gym, I had gained an additional 5 lbs (from the +5 point before) and was becoming extremely frustrated, as I started watching calories and trying to lower my intake and make better choices, I became rebellious and found I continued to pack it on?! The scales were back down a couple lbs finally today. But between the leg pain, the cold short days, and the weight gain, I was becoming so frustrated and afraid of becoming derailed. I COULD NOT let that happen!
This will be my Blog about my journey, my training, my weight challenges, my pain, my struggles, my successes, my life! I've decided to do this as a personal tool for myself and for others that may be facing similar challenges. If I'm able to help inspire even just one other person out there who believes they are all alone, just by letting them know they are not, then this will be more than worth it! I welcome helpful input from you and look forward to you sharing your personal experiences and challenges, and what you may have done to beat them.