Saturday, August 30, 2014

NEVER stop amazing yourself!!

Primarily, I had been concentrating my training runs on the weekends, but a couple times last week I loaded up a bag with my running gear, changed after work and headed straight for my favorite trails.  I was able to get in three training runs of Week 4-2!

I had decided to move on to Week 5 on Sunday in order to give myself a little bit of a break.  However, while I was trying to occupy myself this morning, again I found myself unable to shush that persistent voice inside of me screaming to get out there.  I think you know what happens next. ;)

And off I went, sporting a full five pounds less gravity to boot!!  Yes, my body loves this thing I do called 'running' and responds to it in kind.  I parked in one of my usual places thinking I would head to one of my regular training trails, but knowing this was a new week with longer intervals, I decided to head out to where I knew I would get some flat stretches mixed in with the inclines.  But, this run would be on the roads and not on the spongy trails.

Fortunately, there was a nice overcast and I wouldn't be dealing with the intense sun beating down while out on the open roads, but I did have some concerns this morning.  First, I didn't want to do any damage to either of my feet and stir up the plantar fasciitis again, second I was even concerned about being able to complete the time for these run intervals.  Lest you think it is always rose colored glasses and Pollyanna over here, I will add that I have been dealing with unpredictable bouts of vertigo and a messed up rotator cuff caused by the jacked up way I sleep.

So, here I was heading out for a paved run, unsure if I could really do this, feeling nervous, and I had to start with some steep hills on this run just to get to the good stuff! I often get nervous before I run, even though I preach NOT to beat yourself up, just do the best you can and all that.  But, there was no denying the feeling I had in the pit of my stomach this morning.  I really wanted to be able to do this so much!  I nipped that in the bud with some serious self speak, and mostly by just doing it!

And here I was, doing it.  Running up the big hills and doing just fine.  I might just be able to pull this off.  Continuing on, I did the occasional spot check and everything was going along nicely.  I was heading toward the 'good stuff' feeling great and the first interval was nearing completion when the ground started spinning, more of a side to side type of deal, but regardless it was not normal.  I moved as close to the edge of the road as I could so if I needed to go down, I could dive into the nice soft grass.  And, I made it!  Done with the first interval.  As I was walking the dizziness dissipated fairly quickly.  There was a two minute walk break and I was off again.

As I began my second interval, nice cooling drops of rain started coming down.  A big smile appeared as I enjoyed the refreshing drops.  Heading up another incline, I noticed I wasn't feeling tired, or strained.  I felt good, I mean I felt really good!  There were a few times out on the 4-2 training run that I felt seriously spent, I kept going, but I did struggle at some points.  Not this time.  I was truly amazed.  I did a spot check from top to toe.  Everything was fine.  Nothing hurt, nothing was strained, breathing was strong, legs strong.  Aside from the occasional nuisance of my rotator cuff, everything was great!  How about that?

I finished the second interval and had a little dizziness when I switched to the walk, but nothing terribly distracting.  And it was time for the third and last run interval.  I had timed it just right.  Most of the third interval would be uphill.  Not exactly what I had planned on doing, but none the less, I powered through.  To prevent my lower back from tightening up, I would routinely tighten my stomach muscles and lean my upper body forward as I ran.  This works like a charm.  It is easy to forget to support your back.  Strong stomach muscles are your best defense.

When I completed my run, I headed into the trails for the cool down walk and enjoyed a couple of good oldies on my IPod.  The sun just then decided to put in an appearance and the trails were beautiful with dappled sunlight.  I took the earbuds out and enjoyed the sounds of nature.  All the while amazed at the strength I felt during and after this run today.  It felt really good to feel so strong.  It felt great to feel so good!  Best of all, it is wonderful to still be able to surprise myself!

Leftover kabob fixin's

Tossed into a wok with some little extras and YUM!  Post run quick fix


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