Saturday, September 7, 2013

Week of September 1st - 8th ... 2013

Tuesday of this week I ran 3 miles with hills that was a hard run and kind of fast paced and beat me up a little but too bad ... then Wednesday was to be a moderate pace 4 miles and this was fairly nice with just a little hip pain.... then Thursday was to be 3 miles easy ... I ran slow and easy and felt good.

Today was my 7 mile run with blisters on my feet, which I got from barefoot laszer tag with my daughter Ashlyn the night before (bad idea)  ... too tired to go through a lot of details but it was run #8 of the Half Marathon training for race in October.   It went well ... felt really good through mile 4 .. hips starting hurting some but then went into zone around 6 and not much hip pain to finish.  I was very pleased.

RUNKEEPER routes can be viewed HERE ...

Be Blessed all ... 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Can I Even Attempt This?

Many of you that have followed my running journey know that the very first race I did was a 5k in Charlotte called The Runway 5k.  It was 7 weeks into my running journey.  I had not even completed a full 3 miles at that point.  Running that race was such a huge accomplishment for me.  Every year since then I have returned to that race.  It's been kind of like an anniversary race for me.

So this year, I planned on running it again. It would be the 4th time if I ran it.  I ended up asking a buddy of mine if he wanted to run it with me, and he was excited to do so.  

He has been racing a lot this year.  He was actually training for a marathon that is the week before The Runway 5k.  However, upon further review, he realized it was the exact same weekend as the race at the runway.  He was very disappointed to tell me that he would not be able to attend.   I was pretty bummed as well.  
I decided to look up his event and found there were several races that weekend.  They were holding a 5k, 10k, half marathon and a marathon.  I thought to myself, "we both really want to complete in a race together soon. Since he was willing to run with me, why shouldn't I be willing to run with him?" He had already been involved in a training plan for his marathon, but I had not began a plan for my race yet.  It would be more logical for me to steer my efforts towards his event knowing they were hosting a 5k that day.  
I've been wanting to run consistently again because I've missed it. Sure, I could train for the 5k, but I do not think that would be a big enough challenge to get me focused on a serious running regimen.   I started thinking about last summer, and how great it felt when I trained for a half marathon and completed it.  (By the way that was an insane adventure for many reasons.  You can read that story here: Half Marathon Nightmare!!!) Then it occurred to me, what better way to begin a regimen then to train for the half marathon that weekend instead of the 5k.  Although my friend would be running the full marathon, at least we would be at the same event pushing ourselves to complete something awesome.  

I knew training for this half marathon would be tough.  I looked at the calendar and realized there were only 9 weeks until the race. Last year, my plan was 12 weeks.  We barely were prepared.  I began looking at 10 week plans because I technically had nine and a half weeks.  I thought if I could complete the last long run day of  week 3, which would be 6 miles, it would leave me 9 weeks of a plan left to follow until the race.  Completing that 6 mile run was not going to be easy.  Let me back up just a bit.  Last week was the first time I had ran in a quite a while because of few different circumstances.  At this point, knowing I have only ran twice, and  both times I had to push to even complete 3 miles, running 6 miles felt impossible.  I knew I had the cardio for it, but was not sure about the muscle and joint endurance after such a long break from running.  However, I also knew that if I could complete it, then I would feel very confident moving forward with the training plan.  

I messaged my buddy and asked him if he would like to run the 6 miles with me.  His mileage was already built up and he was definitely up for it.  We met Wednesday morning to run.  Up until this point, my two runs were on Thursday, August 22nd and Sunday the 25th.  This 6 mile run was to be on Wednesday, August 28th.  As a trainer, I would never suggest this to anybody after taking a lengthy break from running.  The risk of injury is great if your joints, tendons, and ligaments are not ready to withstand that repetitive force.

In my early days of running in 2010, I had to push through distances that I thought were going to break me, but they always grew me instead.  I do a lot of strength training that is ideal for runners. Since I have such a strong base of lower body strength, I had a pretty good feeling that even if I went through some pain, I would not injure myself long term.  

Off we went to begin this 6 mile run. The last time I ran this distance was training for the half marathon last July.  I was unsure of what to expect.
The first mile was pretty good except for running up a steep hill too fast.  I should have pulled back, but my pride was in the way, and I was conversing with my friend. After the hill was over,  I felt pretty good. We continued on to mile 2, then 3.  I knew we had started too fast, but I felt ok.  I had hopes it would continue.  

Around mile 3.5 my hips and lower back, where I commonly have some issues, began to ache a little.  I tried to pull back, but it seemed running slower actually caused my gait to change. This was applying more impact to what was hurting.  By mile 4, my hips began to throb really bad, and my lower back was hurting pretty bad as well.  I knew this feeling.  I had it the first time 3 years ago when trying to reach 2 miles for the first time.   I persevered then and I wanted to now, but was not sure I could.

The pain intensified and almost brought me to a screeching halt. I thought back to the early days. I was so determined and I always knew that it would pay off later.  I remembered thinking about how many people were following me on that journey and I wanted to be strong for them.  I knew my perseverance could change the life of someone if I made it through.


I thought about my current clients and how hard they work in their sessions.  How could I expect them to push through when they felt like quitting if I couldn't do the same?  There are too many people I would let down including myself if I stopped, so I kept on.  


The last 2 miles felt like an eternity, as does this blog entry.  :) Every step felt calculated and it was as if I had to make a conscious decision to take the next step.  I wanted to be a runner again too much to quit.  I knew before starting this run it was going to be a test.  I knew that if I did not pass it that I would question if running a half in October would be possible.  I decided it meant too much to me to give up on the idea that quick.  I continued to calculate the cost of quitting over and over and over.  


I decided it was all worth it, and I had to make it.  I just kept saying, "just put one foot in front of the other, and do not look ahead." ( ..... one foot, then the next, then the next.)  Each minute felt like 10, but I was going to finish.  I wanted to feel that feeling of accomplishment.  I had a feeling that my body was going to respond well to the new demand and it would begin to remember how to deal with longer runs.  That is yet to be determined, as I have not had to run again. 

I did finish the six miles this past Wednesday.  The next day would be the real test.  I knew how my body would feel if it was a bad decision.  I also knew what I would feel like if it was ok, and I was going to be able to continue my training.    

The next day, I was not very sore.  No more then expected from an increase in mileage.  I was so glad.  I am very excited to continue to train for this race.  I will keep you all updated as I technically need to complete 6 - 7 miles tomorrow.  I may pull it back to 4 and then adjust next Saturday.  I think I will just play it by ear.  My sweet wife said she would run tomorrow with me.  I am excited because it will bring back great memories of last year when we ran the other half marathon together.

Don't forget if you want to read about last years adventure you can do so here: 
Half Marathon Nightmare!!!  LOL...

Thanks for reading today...and remember .... 

Put in the time. Believe in yourself. Trust the process.  Change forever! 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Time to RUN Again!!!

Wow, what a hectic year 2013 has been.  I do not even know where to begin with this entry, but I want to re-connect with you all and talk about running.  Running seems so simple for some but seems so complex to me.  So as you may know at the end of 2012 I was injured and had to stop for about 4 months.  I then ran a 5k in March with only a couple of runs under my belt.  I pushed so hard I actually made running not fun.  I soon got into mountain biking, which I am in love with, but miss my running as well.  So last week I decided to run.  I had some hesitations though I must say.  They say you do not lose your cardio base until after 90 days.  Hoewever, that was not my biggest concern.  My biggest concern was getting all of my joints and ligaments and tendons back in the groove of running. My mind was made up though and I just laced up the old shoes and went out the door.   I ran a very light pace and just enjoyed the fresh air.  About a mile in I was feeling absolutely amazing. I could not believe the cool refreshing day and was a little bummed I had been missing out on that feeling all this time.  That was until I reached 2 miles.  My hips started aching and my back as well.  Those are 2 very weak places for me.  They seem to fatigue first.  Yep, my biggest concern was a reality.  I did finish the 3 miles however and as always I never regret a run.

Along with the physical, there is another obstacle that seems to be getting in my way.  Pride!  Comparing myself to others is something I constantly have to work on.  Now that I have lost so much ground I feel like I am starting over.  I know I am not completely starting over because I can still complete 3 miles of running, but my pace has changed a great deal.  I am experiencing hip discomfort at about mile 2 as I have said and this was a huge obstacle that I had to overcome the first time.  I know the process to do it though and thats over half the battle.

When running a lot I like to be working toward something.  So why not just dive right in.  I have decided to train for another Half Marathon.  I have a dear friend that will be running it as well.  He has an absolutely amazing story about how he began to run.  You can get an idea of his journey from this video interview he did with a website called Running On Juice.  You can also find out more about him at his juicing facebook page ....  

 I hope to be posting frequently about my half marathon training as it will be difficult in only 10 weeks.  If I had been running regularly it would be less difficult, but from kind of a brand new start to a half in 10 weeks is going to be kind of tough.

Talk to you very soon friends.

Believe. Trust. Change

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Rainy Run

Today was my day to run. I knew it was supposed to be rainy but boy oh boy was it rainy. Barely making it to 40 degrees to boot and the wind blowing a little.  I was thinking, "Really? Did I publicly profess on my blog I would run in this?" Actually there was a part of me that was looking forward to the running in the rain until it got closer to time .. lol ... but all day it was just a monsoon outside and I was determined to wait until it let up at some point.  I was running out of time and thankfully it turned into a drizzle.  I went to change into my running clothes and I heard it just let go.  Oh well too late to turn back now.  By the time I went outside it had let up again. I was so glad.  I wore my rain jacket anyway.  During the first few minutes it did start drizzling again but not bad at all.  The worst part was the puddles everywhere but it ended up being entertaining to dodge them.  However it was inevitable to be 100% successful some of them were deceiving. :(  ... yep you guessed I ended up with wet feet at about .65 miles into the run.  I have been there done that in the past, so not too big a deal, just went on.  Today though was a tough run overall. My energy levels were low probably because I am carb cycling and it was a low carb day. My existing back issues flared up a little and my whole back was on fire after mile 2 and an existing bone bruise under my knee was hurting pretty bad as well.  I did make it to mile 3 before stopping.  I was determined to finish, after all it was much harder then this the first time and persevered.  Overall I was glad I did it. I have never ever regretted a run. Glad its over though and ready for some clear warmer days.  Wow, building my running base back up is harder then I thought. 

Be blessed and remember if you don't feel like working out ... do it anyway! :)

Monday, February 25, 2013

First 3 Miler Since Injury Hiatus

If you did not read my previous post to this one it would help with the understanding of this one.

So on to to a new chapter of running for me. So I had my coming back to running emotional party the other day as you read in my post.  As great as it seems to have found my passion and myself with running again there is a lot of hard work ahead of me. Before my little hiatus from running happened, I went from 100 pounds overweight and not being able to jog even 60 seconds without feeling like I was going to die, to running 3.1 miles in 7 weeks in a time of 39:54 to my best persona record (PR) last year of that same race of 25:22. Not only that but last summer completely my first half marathon of 13.1 miles in 2 hours and 16 minutes. 

I know that my starting place is completely different this time because I have a foundation and was able to still run 2 miles the other day, but my expectations and goals for growth will still take just as much hard work to obtain. I am not entirely sure what those goals will be just yet and you will have to wait until a future post to find those out, but I want them to be something that only dedication can achieve much like my first goal of going from the couch and sedentary to running a 3.1 mile race.

Since my last post I did go for another run on Saturday with my wife. I really wanted to see where I was with my cardio and muscle endurance since the break I had taken. I had decided we would go for 3 miles.  Even though this was a short run for me in the past I knew that it would not feel short that day.  We did complete it but honestly there were moments I had to dig deep to keep going.  Because I had trained my muscle memory to stride at a certain speed comfortably in the past my legs still wanted to run that way which I think is the biggest contributor to that run being so difficult.  I hated though to force myself to run slower which would change my gait and probably cause me to heel to strike which I had worked so hard on not doing anymore.  I was pleased though that my form came back to me because in the end that was where my biggest gains in endurance came from.  Learning to run more efficiently I mean.   For a little info on that you can visit the Running Efficiency page of my blog.

The run went fairly well.  I was pushed a little with my cardio and legs were fatiguing but over all it felt great.  I was a little curious to know what I would feel like the next day, especially my foot that has been injured and still a little painful, but everything was great.  No soreness or stiffness the next morning or today.

Tomorrow is Tuesday which is one of the days I like to run. It looks like its going to be cold and rainy but that never stopped me before so I am going to suck it up and go for it.  One thing I learned in my past adventures was how to push through those feelings of dreading the weather or current physical feelings because I was always proud of completing my run and I never regretted one. Since the injury, one thing that has been hard even for other types of workouts, be it strength or anything, was the ability to push through and just do it despite how I felt or my surroundings. I miss having that grit and determination and what a better way to regain it then by forcing myself to run tomorrow with a high of 36 degrees and it raining off and on. 

Be Blessed!!!!  and remember  BELIEVE, TRUST, CHANGE!!!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

New Self Discovery


Today is the beginning of a new chapter in my life. I am not sure what to call it but I know something new emotionally, and physically happened today.  

I cannot begin to explain the complications I have been through physically the last few months. If I had to describe it with one word I would call it "pain".  I have been very discouraged and bummed out and yet still attempting to be the motivation for my clients that they need and deserve. 

Running used to be a very large part of my life and evidently part of my identity. It all began a few months ago I aggravated an old injury playing basketball which sidelined me from running all together. Then later came a knee injury, and so on to a few other things. I thought I could change my workouts up to lower impact cardio but before long I was sedentary except for demonstrating movements for clients. I went a few weeks on end with maybe one workout a week. 

I hear you guys now saying "what, a trainer and your were not even working out?" Well I say to that yes, your right. Guess what? I am human too. :) .. 

So this week I decided I was running again. Pain or no pain it was happening. I contemplated trying to move into the minimalist world of running and ran Tuesday in some of my minimalist shoes. I did it the right way keeping mileage low and walking every quarter mile but I just wasn't feeling it. 

Today I put on my favorite pair of running shoes and decided I was gonna give what I had. As I ran my foot was hurting but soon it warmed up enough to not hurt severely. I began running faster and faster and remembered my original journey running, which where this blog begins if you care to go back and read it, click here, but as I tired and felt I could not go another step I remembered all the break throughs I had originally. I thought to myself, will I have to start there again? Soon I realized what strength and confidence that journey built in me that I had lost lately. So I embraced it and knew at that moment that yes I am starting over and its ok, I will only become strong again and stronger then before.  

So in summary I found myself again today. I do not know how to explain it but something just clicked today. I am excited to start this journey over and to see where it leads this time at a completely different starting point then before.

Be Blessed everyone and remember,

Put in the time. Believe in yourself. Trust the process. Change forever!