It has been more than 9 months since I posted here and no, no babies to speak of. I’m actually in the process of merging this blog with my non-running blog and making them all part of one blog/site for a domain name I purchased. You’d like being in communications/PR, I’d be more savvy about that but as it turns out – I am clueless! I’m not trying to spend any money that I don’t have to, so that process might be slow going for a while.
Now, back to running. I’ve been off and on with running for the past 9 months. However, since the week between Christmas and New Year’s, I’ve been really good about it. I joined the gym across the street from our apartment for winter. My employer covers $350/year of fitness costs and I had anticipated it would be challenging to run outside in the snow and ice all winter. However, it never snowed more than an inch until this past weekend, so I kind of jumped the gun. They were running a great special though, so January was 50% off and I didn’t have to pay a sign-up fee. I figured I would use the gym to run on the treadmill a few times a week, but I quickly realized how much I enjoyed being there. I’ve always been a “I don’t need a gym – I can work out at home/outside, on my own” type of person. But the Sunday night Rockin’ Flow Yoga and Monday night Tabata classes are great. Having a place to stretch and condition and foam-roll without Rags thinking its playtime is also great. And while running on a treadmill sucks (in my opinion) compared to outside, I’ve figured out that lowering the speed from 6.0mph to 5.5mph and increasing the incline from 0 to 1% makes it feel a lot more natural and while not effortless, I am far less winded than I was the first few weeks of treadmill running.
Which is good, because I signed up for a 5K in two weeks! It was going to be a way to earn myself lots of beer and bad food decisions during the Superbowl, but now that the Patriots aren’t playing, I probably won’t be paying attention if I even watch at all, so now it’s just a good excuse to get used to running races again. That is especially important this year, as I signed up for the BAA Distance Medley!
Am I crazy? Probably. Am I thrilled? Absolutely. I’ve never run longer or farther than a 5K/35-some odd minutes. But I really do want to run the Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute someday and I need to determine if that’s actually realistic (the running part, not the $5,000+ fundraising part) for me. So here is my race schedule for 2016 so far:
- February 7 – Super Sunday 5K in Cambridge
- April 16 – BAA 5K in Boston
- June 26 – BAA 10K in Boston
- July 4 – Firecracker4 (4-miler) in Saratoga*
- October 9 – BAA Half Marathon in Boston (through Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, Brookline, and Longwood)
*We’ll see. I don’t know how my body is going to feel after running 6.2 miles in what could be a very hot or very rainy day in Boston the week prior.
The good news about all of these races is that I don’t have to fundraise for any of them. That can be a really stressful part of preparing for a race for me, especially because I don’t exactly have a huge social circle to tap into. If all goes well with these races, and I do end up applying for the DFMC for 2017, then I can focus on that fundraising as early on as possible.
My brother also decided to sign up for the Distance Medley. However, he’s fast so we won’t be running “together.” Maybe he can have a beer waiting for me at the finish lines? Either way, it’ll be fun to have someone to go to and from the races with. I get so nervous beforehand! It’s that same feeling from cheering when you’re standing still on the mat in absolute silence waiting for the music to start your 3-minute routine. My anxiety was always at a Level 11, but it was the best rush afterward.
As for training, I restarted the couch to 5K/10K program a few months ago but was really lax about it, but I am currently on week 6. It’s an 8-week program, so I’m right on track. I pretty much run every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday right now (I’ll run more often in the spring when I cancel my gym membership and don’t have fun classes to go to anymore). This Wednesday will be my first 20-minute non-stop run in a while. It sounds like nothing but I’m still got the worst shins in America, and while it doesn’t hurt, I’m always tentative on my left ankle ever since I hurt it last winter (and again in the summer when I fell the exact same way).
I really like the 5K Runner app for iOS. I bought the Pro version a few years ago when I still had an iPhone, and have missed it ever since. But now that I have an iPhone for work, I can bring that to the gym or on outdoor runs and use the app (since it’s not reliant on data or wifi) again. I also have the 10K version of the app so I plan to switch to that after the February 5K. Maybe come April, I’ll be running a 5K with ease and in great shape for the 10K in June. Fingers crossed!
Oh, and on a totally cool note, I applied to be a volunteer at the Boston Marathon. It would mean taking a day off from work if I’m accepted, but I think it’d be a great foray into the race logistics and seeing the runners at points other than Mile 25, where I was stationed the last two years at the DFMC cheering section (which was also right outside my office at the time). You had to pick your top 3 choices so I chose finish line, finish area (not sure the difference), and at any one of the 25 mile marker water stops.