Tuesday, February 26, 2013

It's the Little Things that Count

We folks down here in northeast Mississippi couldn't complain one bit about the weather this past week except on Wednesday when I decided I was going to run down at Ballard Park in Tupelo.  I will get to that in a minute.

Since the first of the year I have lost a few pounds and some folks have asked what I'm doing.  I tell them I've been doing pretty much the same thing that I have been doing for over two years.  Sure I have my bad days when I just don't want to eat "healthy" but that one day isn't going to make me fat again anymore than eating right for one day will make you skinny.

My typical day starts off with a bowl of cereal with almond milk.  I changed over to almond milk about a month ago and I'm not going back to regular.  Not only does the almond milk taste better but I can save 140 calories over 1% milk.  That doesn't sound like much but that about a pound a month.

Lunch and Supper can be a lot of different things depending on if I have time to sit down and eat or not.  Most of the time while I'm on the road, I don't have time.  For most, this would mean stopping and getting a fast food meal but more time than not I fix my meal.  It could be a PB&J sandwich with a side of celery and strawberries.  I might open up a can of chicken and eat it with crackers and still have the celery and strawberries.  If I just want something hot then I'll go in somewhere and try to choose something that is healthy.  One of my favorites is Arby's medium roast beef.  I don't get fries but eat baked chips.

You don't always have to eat healthy but you can make choices over the course of the week that are better for you and you will take the weight off.  I believe also that you will feel better too.  Although my eating habits started to change over two years ago, I have made lots of changes in what I eat.  It's the small changes that really make a difference.

Now to my runs for the week.  I had a better week than I did the week before but Wednesday when hit the park, it was turning colder.  The high was supposed to be in the 40s but while I was running it started to sleet.  I think the farther I ran, the colder it got.  I had planned on running a 10K but stopped at 5K because I was rushed for time too.  My time was 31:58 (10:19 pace).

I skipped running on Friday because I knew I was going to go long on Saturday morning.  I set my alarm for 5 o'clock so I could be out on 350 by 6.  It didn't work out.  I turned back over and didn't get up.  I decided to just meet the group at 7.  I ran the entire 7.5 miles to the end of 350 and back and did it in record time for me.  I shaved 18 minutes off the last time I had ran 15 miles.  My time for the run was 2:45:04 and that's an 11 minute pace.  When I got to about 13.5, Koach went by and waved and then came back to make sure I was alright and be sure I didn't need any water.  Thanks Koach!

I started to skip my planned run on Sunday morning too but when I finished the 6 miles I was so glad that I didn't.  I tried to get someone from Facebook to go with me but I didn't have any takers so I didn't feel accountable to anyone.  I got up anyway and started about 15 minutes later than I had planned and went running on the Coke course.  I did it in reverse.  My body didn't want to do six miles but my mind was telling it that is was going to do it anyway.  I got to a spot that you can cut across and make it about 3.5 miles but when I got there I went right on past.  I had to walk a couple of times but when it was all said and done I had my 6 miles done in 1:05:58.  Again at an 11 minute pace.

Thanks for stopping by again this week!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Tell Me Your Secret

This has been good running week for me!  I got to go by the house on Tuesday morning and decided to get in a quick 5 miles and for me it was quick.  I ran it at a 10:36 pace!  I started out running the first mile at 11:16 and finished my last mile at 9:48.  I couldn't have been more pleased.

I made the decision not to run 350 on Saturday and ran around town instead.  I was still having some knee pain and didn't want to put it through the tough hills of 350.  I ran the first 8 miles with a negative split but mile 9 was 4 seconds slower than mile 8 at 10:32.  I really don't want to talk about the last three miles of my 12 miler because I just got through them.  I ended up with an 11:13 pace.

Saturday afternoon I went to the store and found a new pair of shoes that I thought I'd like.  The are the Saucony Grid Fiya.  I took them out for a run Sunday afternoon because the weather couldn't have been any better for running.  I ran 5 miles at a 10:25 pace and love the shoes.  I almost ran a negative split but mile 4 was 8 seconds longer than mile 3.  My last mile was my fastest at 9:47!

Those three runs put my mileage for the week at 22 and I finally got past 100 for the year.  I'm so looking forward to the rest of the year.

There has been a couple of things that I've been meaning to write about for a couple of weeks now but it has slipped my mind.  You might recall a while back that my Garmin was having problems.  It wouldn't stay charged so for a couple of runs I had to just route my run with MapMyRun and use a stopwatch for the timing.  I finally figured out what was causing the problem.  A couple of weeks ago I had to replace the battery in my footpod and I thought that might have been the problem with the heart rate monitor.  I replaced the battery in it too and I haven't had any problems with the Garmin.  So if your are using a heart rate monitor with your Garmin and it starts to crap out on you then check the battery.

The second thing I wanted to write about was about my new Squidoo lenses.  The first one is a companion to this blog and simply has the same name as this blog.  You can get to it here.  The second one is about how to begin running.  This lens is based on my experiences and what I have done.  I'm no expert but I think I can give some tips to someone just starting out.  I can only do that because of all of the people that have helped me in this journey.  That lens can be found here.  I am working on a third but I don't know when it will be launched.

Now for the funny part of this post.  While I was running on the Coke course this past Sunday I came up on a group of girls walking slowly.  I made my way around them and when I had gotten ahead of them one of them yelled out, "Tell me your secret!"  I kept running.  She said again, "Tell me your secret NOW! How do you get your legs so tan!" I still kept running.  After I was way ahead and couldn't hear them talking anymore, I thought of what I should have told her.  I just thought of it too late.  I should have turned around and said, "I run in shorts all year!"  That was the truth until I got my running pants for Christmas.

That's going to do it for this week and I hope you will stop back by again soon.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

I'm Not a Fast Runner but...

Had a great week running this last week.  I still only got to run two days (Saturday and Sunday) but both days were great.  The weather was a little cool on Saturday at 30 degrees but later in the day it did warm up.  I woke up on Sunday with a nice 49 degrees and hit the pavement.

My run Saturday wasn't on the hilly highway 350 because I was still dealing with some knee and leg issues.  I decided to stay on more level ground and take it easy.  I ended up running 8.25 miles at an 11:25 pace.  I'm hoping it will be one of the last time I have to put on those running pants that I got for Christmas.  I love the pants but would rather have on shorts.

My run on Sunday morning was even better.  I set out to run 10K and did just that.  By the time I was finished I had ran a PR and did negative split too!  I ran the first mile at 11:19 and the last full mile at 10:24.  My total time was 1:07:02. That's a pace of 10:49!

As I was running Sunday morning, I was thinking about what I was going to write about this week and it came to me out of the blue.  Although this blog is for everybody, some of the post are for the one just starting out.  Some websites are for more advanced runners but I write about my experiences and hopefully that helps to encourage the ones that are just starting out.

I think back to the time when I first started to walk and thought that my pace was so slow.  It was for a "fast" runner or walker but it wasn't for me.  I thought if I could walk a mile in 18 minutes I was doing good.  As I progressed into running, I found that I could walk/run faster with the same effort.  As a beginner, I wanted to run so bad.  Every time I tried running it was out of breathe in a few seconds.  I hadn't built up a base yet and it was too soon.  Many times a beginner will start out running as fast as they can and when it starts to hurt they stop.  Unfortunately, if they are sore the next day, they tend to not want to go back out there and do it again.  Soreness is going to be part of it but you don't want to be so sore that you can't walk.  I remember my muscles being sore.  I'd get back out there and do it again and again and eventually I didn't get sore.

As a more mature runner now, I run by effort and not always for pace.  Sunday morning when I did the negative splits, I wasn't even trying.  I did feel like I was stronger as I went along.  The rain did help a little bit too.  I guess what I'm trying to communicate in this post is that it is better to walk/run by effort unless you are doing speed work.

Thanks for stopping by and hope to see you again next week.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

What Would You Do?

If you have been reading this blog for a while, then you know that I get ideas for my post just about everywhere.  Sometimes they come to me while running and sometimes while just reading or just thinking about what I'm going to write about.  This weeks idea comes from my friend, Joanna.  She posted on FaceBook that someone ask her what she would do if the doctor said you couldn't run anymore.  She said, "It will be okay.  Running is not a life or death for me.  I'll just do something else." I got to thinking about that and here is my take on the subject.

Not long after I met Joy on FaceBook, I asked her advice on something and she told me that she believed that running was a gift.  I have come to believe the same thing because not everyone can run.  Most people can walk but not all can run.  What if I couldn't run anymore?  It would be hard for me not to run but I think I could find other things to stay fit.

One of those would be to bike.  I've been told to stick with running because it was safer but biking would be the first thing that I'd go to if I couldn't run.  What would be your go to thing to stay fit if you couldn't run?  Please leave your comments below.

I can't believe that January is already over and a new month has already started.  I started the month off with a 9 mile run late Friday morning.  It was a great run but my knee has started to hurt again.  I have narrowed the problem down to the Asics that I bought back in August.  I wore the Saucony shoes the weekend before and didn't have any pain at all.  On Sunday, when I wore the Asics, my knee was beginning to hurt but was much better by Friday.  I really had't thought about the shoes making my knee hurt until I wore them again Friday morning and it started to hurt again.  For now, I'm going to stick with the Saucony shoes and get a new pair soon.

I ended the week with just the 9 miles but I'll get back into the groove before long and be ready for my upcoming half.

Thanks for stopping and hope to see you again next week.