Tuesday, July 30, 2013

New Running Duds

Over the past month I've slowly been compiling a new running clothes wardrobe.

Go me!

I still need to find a few more tank tops that don't come down to my knees, but here's my new duds so far...

Notice the tank tops even match one of my new pairs of shoes?   I'm gonna be stylin'.

Fundraising: $100 donated ~ Thanks Dawn!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Disappointed & Discouraged

I rejoined TNT for a lot of reasons, but one of the main ones was that I was hoping to meet some new people and make some new friends.  I met so many wonderful people during my prior involvement that I assumed the same would occur this time around.  Unfortunately, that hasn't been the case.

I have been extremely disappointed that we aren't running in honor of a single individual like when I participated in the past.  I found it very motivating to connect to an honored hero and to train in honor and support of that person and their fight.  During both of my prior seasons, my honored heroes were young boys.  In each instance I got to know them and their families, and I still keep in touch with both of the boys' mothers from time to time.  Not having a new honored hero for this season has really changed the experience for me.

It seems like most of the team events have taken place while I am at work, and I haven't been able to meet any of the other individuals on the team.  Admittedly, I could attend the weekly training runs on Saturday mornings, but they start at 5:00 AM, often at a place that is almost an hour drive for me, and to say that I am not a morning person is a bit of an understatement.  I just can't quite bring myself to get up at 3:30 AM every week to attend.  I know if I tried, I'd end up miserable and quit - not because of the training but because of the early mornings.

I suppose I should have known that the training runs would be early to beat the heat, but I guess I just didn't think about how early they were going to be scheduled.  I didn't think it would matter, though, because when I was a member of TNT previously I didn't train with the team. The training runs conflicted with my work schedule and I wasn't able to make any of them. Yet, I still managed to participate and feel like a part of the team in the past because I was able to attend all of the other team events.  It was at those events that I got to know some of my teammates and eventually met a great training partner.

I have to admit that I am feel pretty disappointed and discouraged by the whole experience so far.  It definitely isn't turing out anything like my last experience with TNT, and certainly not like what I was hoping for this time around, either.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

New Kicks!

I'm so lazy when it comes to shopping, but I finally managed to drag myself out to buy some new running shoes. It took me about 5 hours and just as many stores to find two new pair of shoes that seem comfortable. I'm not quite sure what is happening to me, though!  For my whole running life I have been a tried and true Nike Girl!  But my current running shoes are Asics, and my two new pair obviously aren't Nikes either.  It's just odd.  Odd I tell you.

Now to take these babies out for a little spin...

BTW, why do running shoes have to be so damn ugly? Who designs these things anyway? Toddlers with a box of crayolas?

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Time Based Training Trial Run

I have never followed a time based training schedule, so I wasn't quite sure what to make of the time based schedule that the TNT coaches recommended we follow to train for our races.  I was concerned that their schedule wouldn't be the best fit for me and ultimately I decided not to follow it.

Just for kicks I decided to give a time based run a try during a recent long run.  My regular schedule called for me to run 8 miles and the time schedule called for me to run for 75 minutes.  I ended up running 5.93 miles in just over 75 minutes.  Not quite the 8 that I was supposed to run, now was it?

The run reinforced my main concern about the time schedule: I am much too slow of a runner to follow one.

On this particular run, I ended up about 2 miles short. What happens when I've followed this schedule while training all season and by the end I'm falling 8 or 10 miles short on my long runs? I know I haven't yet made it to run a full marathon yet, but something tells me 26.2 miles is going to hurt if the longest I've ever made it prior to the race is 16 or 18 miles.

I also felt totally unmotivated during the run.  All I was doing was watching the clock tick along knowing that I had to keep running until it hit 75 minutes.  There was zero motivation to try to run faster since it wouldn't help me finish any quicker.  In fact, I found myself giving in to my exhaustion and allowing myself to slow down a lot more than I would have if I was running toward a mileage goal.

All in all, the trial run reinforced what I was pretty sure I already knew - time based training is just not for me.

Friday, July 5, 2013

What It Takes

"Whether you think you can or you think you can't - you're right." ~ Henry Ford

I've spent a lot of years hearing people tell me that I am nuts because I run. I'd forgotten just how often I used to hear it until recently, when the "you're crazy" comments are once again filtering back into my life. Non-runners seem to think that people who run come from another planet. They look at us like we're not quite playing with a full deck and they have no idea how we run as far as we do as often as we do.

But I'm going to let you in on a little secret: it isn't hard to be a runner. As a matter of fact, you really only need one thing (ok. ok. two things, since we need to add a body that is willing and able to let you run).

All you need to be a runner is the blind determination NOT TO QUIT.

Yep, that's it.

Not exactly rocket science, now is it?

I was thinking about it during a recent long run where I set out to run for 75 minutes (more on that coming up), and after 20 minutes I was bored, my hip hurt, and I just really wanted to quit.

I just wasn't feeling it.

But when I set out on the run I knew come hell or high water, I had. to. finish.

So finish I did. By doing nothing more than refusing to quit.

Blind determination, folks. You'd be amazed at where it can take you.

Fundraising: $100 donated ~ Thanks Annelise, Rich & Mary, and Danelle!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Matthew's Story

Please allow me to introduce you to Matthew Fackler, pictured below with his girlfriend:

Today, Matthew is a happy, healthy 21 year old who attends college, works, and spends time with his girlfriend, but things haven't always been so easy for him.

Matthew was first diagnosed with Leukemia in November 2000 at the age of 8. He underwent three years of chemotherapy and was in remission from January 2004 until December 2004, at which time his cancer returned. He underwent two and a half more years of chemotherapy and was in remission from July 2007 to October 2007, when he relapsed again. In January 2008, Matthew received a life saving bone marrow transplant, and he has been cancer free for 5 years. Without the hard work of LLS to find treatments and cures for blood cancers and the fundraising efforts of the members of TNT to fund that research, Matthew’s story might have had a different ending.

It was Matthew's story that inspired me to sign up for my first Team in Training event years ago and it is Matthew who has has once again inspired me to return to TNT for another season of running and fundraising.  No one should have to go through the things that Matthew has endured, especially a child.   It would be so incredible if someday a cure was found so no one would ever have to suffer from a blood cancer again.  With your help, we can make that happen!

If you want to read more about Matthew's story, you can do so here.