Sunday, September 14, 2014

In One Week - 17/18

Monday - Lift (legs)

Tuesday - Lift (back & biceps), 4 mile run 

Wednesday - Lift (chest & triceps), 5 mile run 

Thursday - 4 mile run 

Friday - Lift (shoulders & abs)

Saturday - 3 mile run 

Sunday - 8 mile run 

One week from today, I will be telling yelling from the rooftops of Omaha that my marathon is over! The anticipation, along with nerves and a stomach knot that twists when a single thought of race day pops in my head, is building and I am trying to change my attitude from "dreading this run" to "I'm going to have the best race of my life" next Sunday. 

This week was one of those from H-E-DOUBLE HOCKEY STICKS. I felt defeated, tested, and longed for a lone second to myself to just sit and be still. However, the leader of my pack upstairs answered a few of my prayers. 

1. On Wednesday, K's schedule changed which gave me an hour to run outside while she was at tutoring. It was a picture-perfect Fall afternoon and I finished my run feeling refreshed and fortunate to have had 5 miles to myself to think and take in the mountain views (they will never get old). 

2. After meeting for coffee yesterday morning with some friends, I did my 3 mile run and forced myself to lay on the couch and do nothing. This isn't easy for me. I feel guilty if I'm not moving or outside or doing something that will benefit society, but I knew that it was OK to take time for myself and hit my "reset" button after the week I had. I flipped through magazines, sipped on tea, watched a movie and fell asleep for a little nap. It was soothing, reviving, and much needed for my mind and body. 

3. Lastly, I needed a weekend with this girl. She has been with me throughout my training and beyond. We kept a good pace and flowing conversation this morning while knocking out my last long run!

I leave for Omaha on Thursday morning and have yet to figure out what I'm wearing for the race. Like I said, I feel nauseous at the thought of what my body is going to attempt next weekend so anything relating to it just keeps getting pushed to the back burner. Some of my family will be traveling from Minnesota to come cheer me on (which means the world to me) so I really need to flip the switch and start getting EXCITED for all the things I have to look forward to! 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Realities of Living Away From Home

1. You will be struck with being homesick roughly once a week. 

2. The meals that you absolutely hated as a kid suddenly sound like a 5-star meal. 

3. You wish you would have paid more attention when your dad was showing you how to change a tire.

4. What's insurance? 

5. When you're sick, you're the one making chicken noodle soup for yourself.

6. Your family will think they are making you feel included by texting/calling you while they are together, but news flash: it doesn't. Get use to it. 

7. FaceTime will become your life-line. 

8. Your bank account actually means something to you. 

9. The level of excitement you reach when you are heading home to visit is incomparable to anything you have ever felt. 

10. You think you have seen and done it all until you move away and realize your hometown is just a small dot on a map full of other small dots. 

11. You are forced to grow up, mature, figure things out on your own - both good and bad - and at the end of the day, you've added some pretty great traits to your personal character resume. 

12. It's true. Distance makes the heart grow fonder and you will begin to start thanking your mom for showing you how to sew loose buttons, your dad for teaching you about finances, and your brothers for shaping you into a woman that exudes confidence, strength, and a bank of good comeback lines. 

13. Friendships take on a whole new meaning. They are more than your shopping partners and the faces in your Instagram pictures; they are your second family. You would do anything for one another no matter what time of day, no matter what circumstances, no matter if it means putting yourself second. 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

I Am 16 Going On 17 :: 16/18

I feel like I'm a mix of being a broken record paired with a nagging 5 year old saying "are we there yet?" in regards to this marathon. Alas, another week of training is behind me and I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that in two weeks I will be crossing the finish line at my first (and potentially) last marathon! 

With Monday being Labor Day, Mel and I sat poolside until one of us…ahem…me..decided we needed to have a little fun on our day off. So we did what any mature and responsible young women would do and bought baby size cans of Coors Light because again, mature and responsible. 

I need to have some random and spontaneous fun to stay sane because it seems as all I do is work, train, sleep, r e p e a t. 

Monday - lift (chest & triceps), 30 min. bike

Tuesday - lift (back & biceps), 5 mile run 

Wednesday - lift (legs), 6 mile run  

Thursday - lift (shoulders & abs), 5 mile run

Friday - 4.5 mile walk

Saturday - 4 mile run 

Sunday - 12 mile run

I'm off to church with the lady friends! Enjoy your Sunday! Xo

Friday, September 5, 2014

Running With Wolves

I’m not one to make excuses and generally roll my eyes when others do, but this week I found myself pulling every excuse in the book. I’m tired. My body needs rest. My legs feel tight. It’s raining. It’s below 70 degrees. My ponytail doesn’t feel right. Ok, that last one didn’t happen but I was searching for any reason to not crawl in bed at 7pm.

I picked up K from school and she asked if I was going to run, as she wanted to ride her bike next to me. I told her no as my legs were sore from lifting/running and I thought it was best to give them a rest. “Carrie! You just gotta push through!” she said. I smiled, laughed, and turned up Radio Disney even louder because T Swift was telling me to Shake It Off. Side Note: I despise T Swift but can tolerate that song 100%. Another Side Note: my world is going to come to a pause when my free XM Radio goes bye-bye.

Thanks to a cup of coffee at 5pm, I was feeling awake and antsy and decided I wanted to run when I got home. I asked K for motivation as I was well aware my caffeine fix could walk out the door at any given second, making the list of excuses grow exponentially.

You can take a warm shower after.
Just think of all the geese poop you could step in!*The park by my house is infamous for a freakishly high number of geese and with that comes their “baggage” if you will.
You could call me after and I will congratulate you.
Just think of the beautiful views you will see!
Run for those who can’t.
The sooner you run, the faster you’re done.

S O L D. I had one of the BEST runs I've had in weeks. If you want to run at a faster pace than normal and feel like you're being chased by a pack of wolves, I suggest running against the clock as the night sky is only getting darker and the rain is only hitting you harder. 

H A P P Y  F R I D A Y!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

15/18 : The Good Kind of Busy

It's back to zombie mode school which means I am back to working from sun up to sun down. I'm not complaining as I love, love, love being this kind of busy because this kind of busy is filled with things I enjoy doing and with people that I enjoy being surrounded by! However, clocking in at 7:15am means there is no way for me to get my morning runs in before work, so these last three weeks of training are going to challenge my problem solving skills to see if I can piece together my training runs as well as lifting.

For week 15, I lifted before work and ran either with K or after I got home from being with her. I thought leaving the house while the sun is still sleeping would be hard but I forgot how much I enjoy the atmosphere of a gym. Note: Atmosphere, not smell or people who don't wipe down their machines or guys who think they are Ahhhnold Schwarzengger.

Yesterday was my last 20 mile run before my race. I made a killer plate of spaghetti on Friday night and woke up feeling rested and ready. The first 10 miles were AMAZING. Like, couldn't have gone any better. Until, that is, my legs started feeling a bazillion pounds, my feet felt on fire and the temps started to rise, making me want a gallon of water and an ice cold shower. S-t-a-t. I pushed through but by mile 17 I physically and mentally hit a wall. I tried everything - recited motivational quotes, turned my Pandora station, mentally made my grocery list (over and over), counted how many bubbles I could blow with my gum. Any random thing you can think of, I did.

I got back to my house and felt defeated. How am I suppose to run a marathon if I can't even run 20 miles? I texted Mel because she can relate to 100% of the things I'm going through as she's gone through them, too.

I went on with my day and settled in with the fact that it's OK I only ran 17 and not the scheduled 20. I know race day is a whole other ball game and "easier" to find motivation and stick with it. By the afternoon, I thought about heading out to run my last 3 miles. I knew it wasn't going to necessarily help me but my stubborness kicked me out my front door and by the end of the day Saturday, I had completed 20 miles worth of running. 

Monday - Lift (Chest & Triceps)

Tuesday - Lift (Back & Biceps), 5 mile run 

Wednesday - Lift (Legs & Calves), 5 mile run

Thursday - (Shoulders & Abs), 5 mile run

Friday - rest

Saturday - 20 mile run  

Sunday - 5 mile bike ride

Let's end this post with a little running humor for ya, shall we? 

P. S. What tricks do you use when you a hit a wall? Comment below.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Story Within a Story

My dear friend and blogger, Vicky, challenged me to make a list of ten books that have impacted my life in some way. It didn't take long to form this list and it sent me on a trip down memory lane while doing so.

It took me back to first grade, reading Frog and Toad books in Mr. Dooher's class and to my bedroom where my my mom would read Love You Forever before turning my lamp off and tucking me in for the night. I remembered myself sitting in my desk as I was reading Charlotte's Web and I was reminded what I learned by reading So Long, Insecurity by Beth Moore.

We read words on pages and when there are no more pages to turn, we think we are done. We either enjoyed the book or not, so we put it on a shelf (to be an obstacle when dusting) or rave about it to our friends and lend it to them as they MUST read it.

After we have closed the book, we are only beginning to start another story about the story just read. The characters, the plot, the teachable moments that strike us with importance and value and depth. Those things stay with us long after the last word is read; the last tear has dropped; the last "just one more chapter" has been spoken because we have made connections and memories in some way to those black letters on white pages.

Here is my list of the ten books that have been meaningful, in some way, in my life. Three of these books remedied heartache. One of these books ignited my adventurous side. One of these books added to my interest in learning about the Holocaust. Three of these books deepened my faith. Three of these books were with me while I was in overalls and pigtails. One of these books taught me about Down Syndrome. One of these books reminded me that nothing is going to get done unless I'm a do-er.

1. Wild by Cheryl Strayed

2. The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult

3. Bittersweet by Shauna Niequist

4. Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist

5. Bloom by Kelle Hampton

6. So Long, Insecurity by Beth Moore

7. Love Does by Bob Goff

8. Charlotte's Web by E.B White

9. Love You Forever by Robert Munsch

10. Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel 

P.S. What books would be on your list and what story do you have to go along with them? Comment below.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Playing Your Game // 14/18

To say that I am over training couldn't be further from the truth. While I still enjoy the act of running, I don't enjoy having to run a certain number of miles on a certain day at a certain time. Back when my alarm would go off at 5am, I couldn't wait to start my morning with some fresh air and an easy run in the park opposed to now when it goes off I want throw a 4 year old fit and just go back to bed.

But I don't because I'm not training for nothing here, folks. I have to constantly remind myself that this isn't easy and that's why not everyone is doing it. 

Monday - 2+ mile hike at Hanging Lake

Tuesday - 5 mile run 

Wednesday - 5 mile run 

Thursday -  5 mile run 

Friday - rest

Saturday - 8 mile run 

Sunday - 12 mile run 

I met a man yesterday that said he hasn't put on a pair of tennis shoes since he ran a marathon 12 years ago. I informed him that I was training for my first marathon and he said if I can run 20 miles, I can run 26.2. Being that I ran 20 miles last week and will do so again this upcoming week, I'm guessing that I should feel at ease and somewhat "relieved" knowing I can do this. Wrong. I'm internally freaking the you-know-what out every hour of every day.

Then my hairstylist yesterday said that she wishes she had the motivation and passion that I do. Me? Umm, girlfriend, I honestly don't know how I've made it this far. Yes, I will pride myself in the fact that I push through the runs that absolutely suck and I get them done because if I say I'm going to following a training plan, I'm going to do just that. But that's not to say that I've teared up a time or two because my body physically and mentally just aches.

Running, well any tough activity for that matter, is such a mental game. When you're in the thick of it and want to give up, you keep going because you switch the negative in your brain to positive and before you know it you are done. You walk in your door, slowly melt in-between every crevasse in your couch, and think how the hell did I just do that?

We get through it; we always do. We cross the finish line only to turn around and begin training for something else because we are human and the clock keeps ticking. Find what it is that keeps your mental and physical game playing, even if your piece is moving at a pace that is too fast, too slow, or in the square that you didn't' see coming. After all, it's just a game, right?