Monday, April 27, 2015

Ye Who Enter, Abandon All Dignity

I've said it before, and I'll say it again; you can't care what other people think if you are going to be a runner. From the clothes, to the races, to the time, to the money, to the absurd behavior, you just have to decide early on that you don't care what other people think if you want to be a runner. You have to get very comfortable with yourself, and with doing whatever will make you comfortable, even if those things might cause passersby, other runners, or even sometimes your loved ones to judge you.

I spent some time planning a course of action to hopefully train for a distance and course PR with my sister-in-law, and my brother sat in the same room begrudgingly agreeing to our demands as he likes to train in his own all-out-no-pain-no-gain kind of way. We have agreed to run the Kansas City Half Marathon in October, which was the first half we all ran together. And this time, Anything For 10 Grace, and possibly my husband's sister may even run with us. I was feeling good!! Of course I was! Writing in a planner takes far less effort than actually training!!

I eventually set out for my run this afternoon, and I was looking legit! Which by the way, is a sign that I was spending more time stalling than anything else. You don't need to look good to go for a run. The other problem with getting all decked out for a run, is that you can tend to look like a bit of a fool when you end up walking pretty much the whole thing.

I spent the first half of my run being scared out of my mind that every little stick was a snake thanks to seeing a picture of a snake that one of my friends from college encountered on a recent run. Then there's the whole not-running-consistently-lately issue. I haven't been running consistently, and when I go out to the trail, I am running down hill on fresh legs, so I end up running way faster than I should, so I am all worn out way early. So there I was a mile in, dressed to the nines, and I was walking along....because you definitely need compression sleeves to go for a walk.

I felt terrible. I looked ridiculous. It was a win-win obviously. And then I started thinking about all the ridiculousness that I had put out there for the world to see before. I have run red-faced to the finish line well after most others have finished their races. I have bundled up and run in the snow. I have gone for a run when it was flash flooding. I have been passed by POWER WALKERS. I have worn hydration belts, and hydration backpacks, and compression sleeves, and running hats with crazy hair trying to escape. I have pretended that I wasn't just walking and complaining at races when I got to the photographer (Thanks, Donna!), and I have embarrassed my husband by insisting on wearing my race medals all day after I finish a race no matter where we have to go that day. I have worn clothing that people should not have to endure the sight of! I have blown snot rockets quite unsuccessfully. I have done so many things because I am a runner that many people would be embarrassed of , but trying to get out there and get back into shape should not be the thing that makes me feel embarrassed out on a run.

I guess since I am headed back to the KC Half, it is time to get back to basics and tell myself that I can do anything for 10!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Runner's Rambles: On the Move...see what I did there?

Ok, I know that there are people who hate running. In fact, probably far more who hate it than love it, but on days like today I just don't understand how. Did I have an amazing long run with an effortless negative split? NO! Hahahaha! Let's be real here. I ran 3 miles. Slowly. And I had to stop a few times to stretch out my calf muscles. But here's the thing, I got to spend time outdoors enjoying the beautiful weather and scenery that is Spring. I got a chance to appreciate my mobility, which is not a given in life by any stretch of the imagination. I got to interact with other people in a community that is pretty darn awesome; the running community is typically an uplifting and encouraging bunch! All those endorphins, ya know?

I have been in a limbo of sorts moving to Missouri this week. That may seem strange since I was born and raised in MO, but I am now living in pretty much the only part of the state I am unfamiliar with, and it is not the place I think of when I think of MO and home. It also seems strange to know that I have no return flight booked for Philly, and that is the other place I learned to call home. I got engaged, moved to Philly, got married, made some amazing friends, and spent my first year of marriage in Philadelphia. Now I am living in temporary housing outside of St. Louis, my worst nightmare as a child (slight exaggeration), just waiting to really settle into our new home in late May, and trying to forge my career path here. Seriously in limbo all around, but I still have running, and I should be thankful for each run even when they are slow or difficult.

One thing that is helping me get used to the idea of living in eastern MO is that St. Charles is ADORABLE. Seriously, I love the historic district and all the little parks I've seen, and I am pumped about being able to run on the Katy Trail. I hate gravel trails, but I might get used to this one! I even had another runner on the trail give me a high five on my run today!! Remember what I said about the running community? Eh, eh? And I needed that high five right about then. I may be in limbo, but I am still so fortunate, and running helps remind me of that. I. Just. Love. Running. Come on people, drink the nuun-koolaid! Fall in love with running! Ok, ok... just fall in love with something that will keep you healthy and loving life because right now you can, and one day it will be too late.

Talk about Rails to Trail!!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Oh, hey there!

It's been weird. I haven't posted in quite some time, so let me just give the rundown, if you will, of where I've been and where I'm going!

It appears as if I never explained that I got injured and sidelined with physical therapy in the fall, which knocked me out of running the New York City Marathon. I was devastated. I did however, get to watch my sister-in-law run her first half marathon this past fall! It was my first time as a pure spectator at a race, and it was inspiring and gratifying to cheer on my sister, brother, and all the other runners that day.

I left my job at a running specialty store in PA to go back into teaching, but in a whole new area than ever before in my teaching career. I am loving my job teaching preschool!! I never thought I would say such a thing, but I love it!

So where am I headed? Well, first of all, back to Missouri! My husband is being  transferred to St. Louis, and I am pretty excited to be moving to the St. Louis area! And that's another thing I NEVER thought I'd say, especially with the quickly approaching start to regular season Royals baseball.

So, my running? It's been sporadic and inconsistent at best. I signed up for two spring races that I have run before, and I originally planned to return with hopes of improving my personal course records, but I have since transferred my bibs to friends who will be in the area since I am moving before the races. I am excited to start exploring a new area to run when I move in a couple weeks, and I am looking forward to setting some race goals for myself for the fall. I am also excited at the possibility of meeting up with family and old friends at races back in MO!!
I am loving the spring flowers instead of snow on my runs!