So, this weekend was supposed to be my mini-version of my upcoming Princess Challenge weekend in February. I ran a 5k on Saturday and then Sunday was supposed to be my 10k so I would complete the Remix Challenge. Well, that didn’t happen because I had an incident beforehand in which I fell on my way to the race on Sunday….and hit my head on the curb…..and spent the morning in the ER getting x-rays (nothing broken) and stitches (9 stitches total). This was not at all what I had trained for. I’m disappointed for sure. And now I have to buy yet another pair of the same pair of Ann Taylor Loft sunglasses (this will be my third pair) because they completely shattered when I fell. … I love those sunglasses.
-As a side note, my experience really showed why the running community is so amazing. There were lots of runners all walking to their corrals (or the porta-potties) and so many stopped to see if I was ok, help me up, give me a towel, etc. And, a Streets & Sanitation employee stopped, called the ambulance, and waited until the ambulance pulled up before he left. Way to go, Chicago!
Sure, I didn’t get my Remix Challenge medal on Sunday. (But I’m already planning a victorious return next summer. Remix Challenge – I’m coming for you!…..again……) And, I didn’t get my 10k done for this summer running season. But…….the thing about races is that once you start, once you’re hooked, you can’t quit. So, now I’m registering for 10k in September (Run Mag Mile) and I’m planning on doing a 15k at the end of October (Hot Chocolate).
That 10k medal will be mine. It just won’t perfectly match my 5k.
But it’ll still look good around my neck.
In one week’s time, I had three big events happen. I graduated with my Master’s, I registered for the Princess Challenge, and I got my ears re-pierced. Now, these may seem to be very different levels of events. But, really, they are all actually connected.
- I graduated with my Master’s degree. This was a lot of work. I was 8 months pregnant with baby girl (she just turned 3) when I started on this journey and then I took last school off from grad school so being able to finally be done was a huge accomplishment. It was not easy. Not at all. But, that’s what made it feel so worthwhile. I did it. !!!!!!
- I registered for the Princess Challenge. Yep. February 2018 I’ll be doing a 10k on a Saturday and then a half-marathon the following day. Is this insane? Well, I did the 10k during the Princess Run weekend at Disney World in February 2017 and I did my first half-marathon this past September. It’ll take a lot of training but I know it’s possible. I’m registered for my first challenge weekend during the Rock ‘n Roll half-marathon weekend in Chicago. (I’ll be doing a 5k and then 10k.) It’s doable. It’s definitely doable. And, I’m looking forward to seeing what my body can accomplish with training.
- I got my ears re-pierced. In the past several years, I have rarely worn earrings. In December, when trying to put in earrings, I realized that my piercings had closed up. I had stopped wearing earrings on a daily basis as I had developed a probable nickel allergy and had small children at home who loved to yank earrings out. Now that my girls are much less likely to want to pull on earrings (5 and 3 now), I realized how much I missed having the option to wear earrings. After the piercings were done (standard ear lobe and double ear lobe on each ear), I said to my piercer “I feel like myself again.” And it was true. I hadn’t really realized just how much I had missed wearing earrings until they were back. I was back to myself again. Even if it was just my ear piercings.
And, that’s part of the goal. Grad school. Running. Pierced ears. They may not seem connected and they might not all seem like a big deal….but each one of them, in different ways, help me to the goal of being the me that I want to be. Finishing grad school? Huge goal. Training for a Run Disney challenge weekend? Another goal. Buying new “grown up” earrings that aren’t necessarily cheap and probably filled with nickel? New goal.
What are your goals for the rest of 2017? Are you already planning goals for 2018?
I have noticed in just a short amount of time that my runs are getting easier again. But, I know that there will be things that will make it harder to keep up with my training. Grad school has started up again and that sucks up a lot of time. (But graduation comes in May!!!!!!) And the weather is still, well, winter. And, it’s not out of ordinary to walk in and find several piles of cat barf on the treadmill. (Thanks, Buddy….) But, I am determined to keep this going.
It’s time to start registering for spring/summer races.
What races are your favorites?
A few months ago, my treadmill died…..and then grad school happened……and then the weather turned colder. All of these added up to me completely stopping my training. *sigh* So, after some important conversations and a visit to a local gym, we made the decision to buy a second (and much higher quality) treadmill. Important reason #1: this one is covered by a warranty for several years so if the motor dies on it, it can be fixed. Important reason #2: although a gym membership is enticing, any gym that we go to would be required to have child care on site because I would have to bring the girls. Important reason #3: the convenience factor of having a treadmill in our house so I don’t have to go outside (in weather) is pretty high.
So, here’s my new friend. I’m looking forward to working with her so that I can keep up with my training. Goal? I want to be able to register for any 5K or 10K that I want to without having to worry about whether or not I’ll be ready. And…..I am planning on doing the Glass Slipper Challenge in 2018. Run Disney, here I come!
Plus, it gives me a chance to catch up on my Netflix…..
I know I’m not the only one who believes that running in the fall is the best. It’s the time of year when I actually “enjoy” running. (Ok. I’m never going to be a person who loves running. I love the after of running, not the during. But, it’s better in the fall.) I find that on longer runs, I get bored really easily. This was a real problem during the half-marathon. But, there is so much to look at during the fall that keeps me a bit more focused. Beautiful leaves. Cooling winds. Yep. So much better than being a sweaty mess during the summer. 🙂
If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already seen these pictures. (So, sorry.) But, going for a fall run among the trees is just so incredibly peaceful! Even if you are surrounded by 100s of other runners during a 5k. 🙂
My training has been a bit nuts this summer. We’ve been on two separate week long vacations and those threw my training off. (Although I did go to the gym one morning while we were at Disney.) Luckily, I was able to get most of my training done before the summer really got going so I’m kind of repeating a lot of what I’ve already done so that I’m ready for my first half-marathon….in just a little over a week! AAAAAHHHHH!!!!
I know that I can do it. Well, at least, I know that I can finish it. I don’t know what my time is going to look like. But it feels kinda crazy to think that just a year ago I was getting ready to do my first 5K. And now, here I am….at a point that I never would’ve imagined….where I’ve completed several 5Ks, one 4 miler, two 10Ks, and now…..now something with the word “marathon” attached to it.
Realistically, I’m as ready as I’m going to be….last Saturday I did 10 1/2 miles – my longest to date- and tomorrow I have one more long run …..but, please, do me a favor….think warm fuzzy thoughts on September 4th….. 🙂
When I was toward the end of my pregnancy with baby girl, I somehow got it in my head that I wanted to train for a 5K. For someone who has never run, who has never enjoyed running, who has never liked exercise…..this surprised…well…me. People who have been friends with me for a long time will recall that I would announce that “the only reason to run is if you are being chased.”
It seemed a bit daunting but I felt that a 5K was probably doable. Not too strenuous and I wouldn’t have to spend hours running.
Soon after I got it in my head that I wanted to run a 5K, I started to think that someday it might be fun to run a race at Disney World. I guess that I figured that adding the fun of Disney might make me enjoy the running, or at least not dislike the running. I shared that thought with Ryan. He agreed that it would be a good plan. My birthday present was an iPod and a card on which he wrote “if you run, we’ll fly” meaning that if I did the running, we would fly to Florida so I could do a Disney race.
*flash forward a year*
I did not get as much running/training done during baby girl’s first year. That first year of baby stuff is a tough one. Juggling baby girl, big girl, teaching, AND grad school classes meant that I had absolutely no time. But this summer, that changed. I started doing a 5K training app and eventually I graduated from the 5K training and began the 10K. I still kind of have a hard time believing that I’ve been able to do this. I’ve noticed a difference in my energy level. I had noticed a difference in how my clothes were fitting…..until the holiday candies/foods started appearing in my kitchen. And, I’m doing all of this while raising money for Special Olympics. I’m actually looking forward to running. (Well….not every morning….some mornings I am definitely not looking forward to running. Especially now that the colder weather has appeared.)
I’m proud. I’m proud that I’m doing this. I’m proud that I’ve stuck to it. I’m proud that I’ve been able to do this for myself. I’m proud that I’ve been able to do this for my girls. And, I’m proud that I can do this for the athletes in Special Olympics.
If you would like to donate to my fundraising (any little bit helps!!), please click here. The link brings you to my fundraising page. I would also love to hear from anyone with stories about their training. How has it gone for you? What has been the hardest part? What has been the most amazing part?