Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Half-Marathon, Week 2, Day 2

Hanging 'em Up

All good things must come to an end.
Darn it.
First things first.
I made it through the increase of Week 2, Day 2!

I knew when I jogged my first round it was going to be tough.
My knees have been giving me grief.
This morning they weren't as swollen as they have been.
But, impact is impact and it wasn't pretty.

I didn't break any land speed records.
I did manage to run 7 rounds, about 14 minutes.
I did it without my morning tea and electrolytes.
(Fasting for blood work.)  It was good.

My doc (also a former runner) and I discussed things.
Due to my family history and current situation,
he said, no more running.
Walk, swim, elliptical.  No running.

My knees are popping and grinding and filled with fluid.
(There is no way I can sneak up on anyone.  They'd hear me coming.)
The next step is an orthopedic and surgery.
No, thank you.  I think I'll just use the elliptical.

I am very disappointed.  
I was looking forward to a new challenge, and a new me.
My cheerleaders said - no problem, we'll walk a marathon.
It'll give us more time to talk along the way.

I love these women.
They encourage and support me.
I'm going to take today to be sad, 
then I'm going to encourage and support me.

This blog commitment was first about running.
Now, I'm going to focus on the other things.
I'm enjoying writing and creating and expressing myself.
So, stay tuned to see what I discover next!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Half-Marathon Training - Week 2, Day 1

Like a SEAL in the Surf...

This is evidence I did something!
No, it wasn't just walk back and forth
in front of my mailbox.  
Weekend rains made the gravel spongy.
Don't know that it was any softer on my knees.
The rain certainly did not help the humidity.
But, it gave me visible evidence of my labors this morning.

Week 2 has started.
I'm excited.  I'm scared.
I have 87 year old knees.
Getting those checked Wednesday,
provided I live through Day 2 of Week 2.
That's the day we up the ante.

Week 1 and part of week 2 involves a sequence.
Run 1 minute, walk 2 minutes.
It's just enough recovery time.
I'm challenging myself to see how far I can go in a minute.
This week we begin the transition to run 2, walk 2.
I know I can run 2.

Today was gratifying in a way.
It was a bit easier.
No, not easier, but I'm getting stronger.
It was still tough.
But it wasn't as tough as Saturday.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

13.1 - End of Week 1 Training


This is so very, very true, as I'm learning.
I finished my Week 1 Couch to 21K training today.
It was increments of run 1 minute, walk 2, for 3 miles.
Did it in 45 minutes, which is a 15 minute mile.
Not too bad for a beginner.

What else I've learned this week:

1.  Appropriate clothes and shoes are a must.
I bought "official" workout clothes yesterday.
They are snug fitting and easier to move in.
The quick dry, wicking fabric really helps.
I refuse to be self-conscious wearing them because 
I'm training for a freaking marathon.
The weight will come off...

2.  Appropriate music is a must:
Here's my current playlist:

Hey Mama - Nicki Minaj
Honey, I'm Good - Andy Grammer
Sheppard - Geronimo
Counting Stars - OneRepublic
Best I Ever Had - Gavin DeGraw
Drive By - Train
St. Elmo's Fire Theme Song - John Parr
Blank Space - Taylor Swift
Don't - Ed Sheeran
On Top of the World - Imagine Dragons
I Lived - OneRepublic
Rose Tattoo - Dropkick Murphys

Some were chosen for the beat.
Some were chosen because the lyrics make me smile.
Some were chosen because the lyrics encourage me.
The Murphys are mandatory for all workout playlists. 

3.  Here's a list of my cheerleaders and what they've said:
Katie - it doesn't get easier, you get stronger.
Romona - chew gum, it helps keep your mouth moist.
Dawn - military cadence chants help you breathe right.
Connie - pick up the pace and keep going!
Melinda - knowing she's training too helps!

Thanks to all of them for making this first week a success.

Here's what else I've learned:
I bought an elliptical to avoid heat & bugs...
then I agreed to a marathon.  What was I thinking?
Rest days and no-exercise days are schedule for a reason.
Running only on Mon., Wed., and Sat. will take getting used to.
Horseflies are apparently immune to Deep Woods Off.
Everything sunburns but my legs, where I WANT color.
Found some organic hydration powder that is awesome.
In 19 weeks I'll be able to run a 21K race.
In 19 weeks I'll be able to run 13.1 miles.
Wow.  I can't wait!!!!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Half-Marathon Training, Week 1 Continued


I am not going to die.
It was touch and go for a while.
Ellipticals are wonderful, but good old-fashioned
walking/jogging uses different muscles.

Here's what I've learned since Monday:

1.  Good shoes are a must.  Invested in these yesterday:

 I was hoping to get a "pretty" pair, you know, colorful.
After research, these were the right ones for me.
Black is slimming and goes with everything...right?

2.  Appropriate workout clothes are a must.
I literally ran out of my shorts this morning.
That was an "effing awesome" feeling...
I caught them before I frightened the wildlife.
Can't wait for my payday shopping trip!!!

3.  Running on a freshly grated road is not fun.
I liken it to the SEALS running on the beach in Coronado.
(Seeing that is on my bucket list.)

You get zero traction and it works your tail off.
I'm no G.I. Jane, but I could probably chase one of these guys.
(What I'd do if I caught one is for another post...!)

4.  After workout stretches are a must.  
Also learned this the hard way.
It's taken me two days to limber back up.
Found a "yoga every runner should do" site.
Downward Dog was super good to my legs this morning.

5.  After stretching, meditation is a must.
I had company this morning.  
She talked to me a bit before settling
 to do her own version of kitty yoga.

I love the app, Calm.
 I use the 10 minute guided meditation with
the Celestial Sunbeams scene.
The music reminds me of Pachelbel's Canon in D.

My morning workout is done.
I have an enormous sense of accomplishment.
I feel great.
I'm ready to tackle the rest of my day.
I think I'll start with a good book.

Monday, June 8, 2015



13.1 = 21K = a Half Marathon.
WHAT was I thinking?

Yes, I agreed to run a half-marathon sometime the next school year.
I have a cheerleader/coach who is fabulous.
She is running 4000 miles across the US this summer 
as part of a cancer awareness group.
(It's the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.)

We have coffee every afternoon during the school year.
I've heard her talk about training and running and gear.
I saw her elation when she ran her first half-marathon.
I've watched her become addicted to races and thought - what the heck?

So, I found a program to take me from couch to 21K in 20 weeks.
(It's from this site:
I found an app that sets my time for me and plays my music.
(It's called Gymboss and it's free.)

I hit the road just after 7 a.m. this morning.
It felt wonderful!  I ran a minute and walked two...ten times.
Thanks to my elliptical my thighs and hiney were fantastic.
My calves protested after the first 1/4 mile.  Different muscles.

My tried and trusty shoes gave me a blister after mile 1.
A blister!  What's up with that?
(I've had them for 4+ years that I can remember.)
They are getting retired and replaced tomorrow.

While walking I keep track of nature for entertainment.  
There were some wins and losses.
I saved 3 night-crawlers from death on the hot, sandy road.
I saw 2 crushed frogs.
I saw this awesome snail/slug/bit of slime.
He's about 2 1/2 inches long.

I finished my "challenge" hot, sweaty, and elated.
Morning meditation on the patio helped with cool down.
A cold shower, breakfast quesadilla, and icy water helped my mood.
My muscles are tired.
My body aches.
Thank goodness I don't have to do it again until Wednesday.
But you know what?  I did it.
And I will do it again and again and again...
until I can do all 13.1 miles!