Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Oh No, Not Again!

For the past two mornings I have felt like I might be getting a cold again, but by evening I feel just fine. I have also felt a little short of breath and have been coughing the past few days. Everyone keep your fingers crossed that the sick bugs don't get me again! I don't want to get behind in my training. Not to mention that I've already been sick 4 times this winter. I'm hoping that it's just my allergies acting up with this crazy weather.

Today's run was a nice, slow, easy 3 miles on the treadmill while I watched the second half of My Best Friend's Wedding. I watched the first half during my run yesterday. That seems to be turning in to the routine - watching a movie over two training sessions. The only bad part is if the movie ends before I'm finished running on the second day. I didn't want to run too hard today, because tomorrow I am meeting one of my teammates to once again conquer that hilly course near the Y that I ran last week. So, wish me luck! Fundraising: $50 donated - Thanks Keith!

Monday, February 27, 2006

Night Runner By Nature

I love to run at night more than at any other time of the day. Ten o'clock rolls around and I start getting this itch to run. It feels like it is in my blood and I can't make it go away unless I put on my shoes and hit the pavement. There is just something tranquil about running at night. It's quiet and peaceful - just me and my thoughts. I like the feeling of being swallowed up by the darkness. It feels like I am just unplugging from the world. It's just me and the road. I think this is probably one of the worst thing about winter for me. Since I am such a cold weather wimp, I never run outside at night in the winter. I just can't take the cold. So, I've been running inside on my treadmill for months and I think I'm getting cabin fever. Come on spring!! Fundraising: $40 donated - Thanks Dave & Barb!!

I added a guestbook to my site. The link is over to the right. Please take a moment to sign it and say hello so I know that you stopped by!

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Honored Hero Matthew

I am a chronic e-mail checker. I check my e-mail a million times a day, and I'm really not sure why. It isn't like I ever get anything that critical. Certainly nothing that couldn't wait a few hours, or a day or two. So, as is my routine, I got up this morning and checked my e-mail while I was eating breakfast. And sitting in my inbox, from a name I didn't recognize with the subject: Honored Hero Matthew, was an email that stopped me in my tracks. I opened the email to find a short message of support from Matthew, the 13 year old (or I guess I should say 14 year old, as he just had a birthday. - Happy Birthday Matthew!), who is my honored hero for the Indy Mini that I am training to run. Included in the email was a link to a website that Matthew's mother has been keeping of Matthew's battle with ALL. I went to the website and literally spent 7 1/2 hours sitting in front of the computer today reading every word she wrote from the day she started the site through the final posting today. What a touching and heart wrenching experience. I laughed, I cried, and I asked Why? a million times. But you know what - she never did. Never once in all those posts did she ask Why her son? Why her family? And that amazes me. As I was reading about their battle, I had a million thoughts running through my head - mostly guilt. Here I am complaining about a little pain from running or struggling with motivation to go out on a run, and Matthew is running cross country meets the day after chemo. He's struggling with pain, and nausea, and vomiting, and rashes, and unimaginable things, and I'm whining that my knee's aching a little and I have to take a few motrin. It makes me feel guilty for not being thankful that I'm healthy. I'm fairly stressed out right now because I feel overwhelmed with the volume of stuff that I am trying to deal with. And Matthew's mother is juggling her life which includes a husband, 4 children - one with leukemia who is on constant chemo, and a job. And she's been doing it for more than 5 years. How? She must be an incredible woman and Matthew is an incredible kid. I read about all of their struggles, and I feel like I am not doing enough. I read about all the blood and platelet transfusions that Matthew has had and feel guilty that I don't give blood. I think about all the expenses that their family must have and feel guilty about complaining that my medical insurance just went up again. I think I've gotten my dose of reality. My life really is very very blessed. I should take more time to "stop and smell the roses." I've added a link to the right if you are interested in reading about Matthew.

Friday, February 24, 2006

I thought you guys were my friends!

When I came up with the idea to train for this event, why didn't someone remind me how old I am? Why didn't someone say to me, "Are you sure you want to do this? You aren't 18 any more, you know."? And I have the idea of running a full marathon parading around in the depths of my mind. What am I? Nuts? Since switching to the beginner training schedule, I have been having an easier time; however, I'm finding out that my max is about 5 miles before my knees start aching. So, the long runs are kicking my butt. I may have to start worshiping the founders of ibuprofen as my new personal heros. I can always quit and walk the half-marathon instead, right? If only. Those of you who know me well, know that would never be an option. I will use the same stubborn, bull-headed determination to get through this that has gotten me through every other important but difficult thing in my life. And that concludes week 11 of training; the race is 10 weeks from tomorrow!!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Where did these hills come from?

Today I ran 3 miles on a new outside course with one of my teammates. We basically ran two loops of the road that the YMCA is on. When I was driving the road to figure out the mileage, it didn't seem like there were that many hills, but man could I feel them running! I'm sure it is good training for me, since I rarely run on hilly courses, but it wasn't much fun. I sure hope the mini course isn't very hilly! I don't think I will be able to take 13 miles of a course like the one today. Fundraising: $50 donated - Thanks Laura & Mike!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Attention Scrapbook Fanatics

Today I meet a team member who's fundraising idea is right up my alley - Scrapbooking!! - and I wanted to help her get the word out. She is raffling off a scrapbooking getaway weekend. Please contact her if you are interested in buying a ticket. Here is her TNT website with the details: **link removed**

I ran 3 miles today with one of my teammates. Every time I run outside it surprises me that I end up too warm eventually. I will get dressed in all my layers and walk out the door and mumble to myself that I must be insane to be outside when it is so cold. And I'll start running and think I'm going to be a popsicle by the time I'm done, but it never fails.....by the time I get back to my house I'm drenched in sweat, have my jacket unzipped and my hat and gloves in my pocket. I keep expecting to find a temperature that is so cold that this doesn't happen, but so far I haven't found one. Guess I really shouldn't use the cold as an excuse, should I?

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Blown Away

I met one of my team in training teammates at the YMCA to run 3 miles on the track today. For anyone not familiar with their track it is a 1/8 mile loop - which means that I ran in a little circle 24 times to make up my 3 miles. It was a good thing I had my watch on to count the laps or I would have completely lost track! It actually was pretty nice being able to run inside in the warm, but not be on my treadmill. However, it just proved to me how slow I really am. There was a guy there about my age who was running, as well, and he passed me at the exact same places on the track every single loop. So, he was running 2 loops for every one of mine. That made me feel just great! And then this little old man, who was probably in his 70's, started passing me, too. When I was all done I checked my pace and found out that I did the run in just under 30 minutes. That is a fast time for me to run 3 miles - I think it was the old guy that got me moving! But, it sure made me feel like a slow poke. Oh well, my only goal is to finish the race and they give you 4 hours or so to complete it. I'm planning to meet another teammate on Tuesday to run outside, so I hope the warm weather is back by then. It's nice running with other TNT members to help keep my motivation up. Otherwise, I probably would have opted for a nap today instead.

Friday, February 17, 2006

What Happened to Spring?

I have to admit that I was a little lazy last week in my running. I was so busy getting ready for my boyfriend's birthday party that I skipped a few of my training days. So, I thought it would be a good idea to log a few extra miles this week. So, even though today is supposed to be a day off, I ran 2 miles. I decided that it was too cold to get all bundled up just to go out for 25 minutes. So, I ran on my treadmill and watched the beginning of Can't Buy Me Love. Anyone remember that movie? It used to be one of my favorites. I am seriously going to have to consider expanding my DVD collection if I am going to continue to run on my treadmill at this rate. I'm starting to memorize the lines to all the movies I own! I hope that everyone has a great weekend and keep your fingers crossed for the return of the warm weather.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Wind - Friend or Foe?

I can't believe how nice it is outside today! I ran in sweats and a t-shirt and I was still too warm. It felt good to not have on two layers of clothing along with a hat and gloves. Running in the winter often makes me feel like I'm that goofy kid who's mother dressed her in a snowsuit that is so big she can barely move, and if she falls over she'll never get back up. Of course, tomorrow it is supposed to take a turn for the colder, so it'll be back to the snowsuit. I couldn't decide if the wind was a good thing or a bad thing on today's run. It made it more challenging running into it, but at the same time it helped cool me off a little. And it sure felt nice when it was at my back helping to move me along. It started raining briefly at the beginning of my fourth mile, and I was a little worried it was going to be a long, wet last mile, but it stopped after a few seconds and I managed to escape getting drenched. I did forget my kleenex again, though. You'd think I'd learn by now! I have to say that fundraising for TNT has had added benefits that I didn't expect. I actually enjoy going out to my mailbox these days because I often find something other than bills! The number of donations and kind letters of encouragement never cease to surprise me. Fundraising: $25 donated - Thanks Frank & Vera!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Feels Like Spring!

What a beautiful day! It feels like spring out there. I wish it would stay like this for the rest of winter, but I hear we are in for a cold weekend again. I have a much easier time running when I can do it outside. I'm a wimp when it comes to cold weather, and don't like running outside if it is below 40 degrees. Today I ran a course that I'm not too familiar with, but I'm guessing it is about 2.5 miles. I may have to buy myself a new toy to track my mileage when I'm running outside. Happy Valentine's Day to everyone! Fundraising: $200 donated - Thanks Grandma, Mike, Kayla & Lance!

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

M&M's & Running are a bad combo!

I've been trying to decide which training schedule to follow: the beginner or the intermediate. I've been following the intermediate schedule for the past few weeks, and I think it is a little too advanced for me. Every run ends up feeling like a major workout and I've stopped looking forward to running. It's a little early in the game for that, so I decided I better ease up. So, I'm going to follow the beginner schedule. That schedule is probably too easy for me as far as the distances go, but the decreased mileage may allow me to work on my speed a little. I gained some very valuable knowledge this evening - Don' t eat 1/2 lb. of M&M's an hour before you run! They sit like a lead weight in your stomach and make you want to vomit. I should know better. I sat down with the bag, and one turned into two, which turned into a handful, which turned into half the bag. Ugh! Fundraising: $50 donated - Thanks Dr. Spink & Uncle Carl!

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Training Officially Starts!

This is the first official week of training and I am very happy to report that I finally feel like I am back at 100%. I managed to run 4.5 miles today at a fairly decent pace. Today was one of those days where I felt like I could run forever and never stop. I love those runs. I wish I had more of them. It felt great to be able to run without feeling like I was going to fall over at any given second. Fundraising: $40 donated - Thanks Laura!

Friday, February 3, 2006

Moving Slower, But Getting Better

I ran 4 miles today and it wasn't too tough. It was certainly at a much slower pace than I have been running, but at least I felt like I could breathe today. I can't wait to feel completely normal again. (Well, as normal as I can get, anyway!) Hopefully just a few more days!

Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Learning to Breathe

When I first started running, it was always my breathing that brought the runs to an end. When I started to get tired I would try to take full deep breath to get more air, and it would freak me out when I couldn't do it. I would start paying too much attention to my breathing and feel like I was trying to suck the air in and out, but still wasn't getting enough. So, I would end up stopping because I felt like I was about to start hyperventilating. I finally learned to stop doing this and I have been fine for years, but having this cold and not being able to breathe very well is bringing back those memories. I managed to make it the whole 3 miles today, but just barely. It's a good thing it doesn't normally feel like this or I think I'd toss in the towel. Fundraising: $130 donated - Thanks Jim, Lisa & Deana!