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I am absolutely ecstatic to announce that my hiatus from running has finally ended, and although I’ve only got about 3.5 miles under my feet so far this week, the ankle feels good as new, and I’m ready to take on my own personal trail turkey trot tomorrow.
I know I have been pussy footing around getting back into running. Erring on the side of caution in order to push back my return to doing something I love so much, going mildly psychotic in the meanwhile,and growing more and more irritable as the days went by. I have to be honest though… I probably could’ve started back a week earlier, but I was scared.

First of all, I only started running in April, so I know how bad it sucks when you first start running. At least for me it did. It’s uncomfortable, your lungs hurt, your legs hurt, your pride takes a beat down, it’s time consuming… Starting running and sticking to it takes balls. Since I have been injured, I have been counting the days I’ve gone since running, knowing each one that passed would make my “comeback” that much more like starting all over again. Yet when I started feeling better, I just tried to push back that first run even longer, because I knew how horrible it was going to be. (more…)

Hate Run

Once a week I subject myself to the ugliest run possible. I hit the gnarliest trail I know in all its mountainous, muddy, rutty, rocky, ankle breaking glory. And it is awful.
I call this my hate run, because quite frankly it is fucking terrible. It doesn’t leave me joyful and optimistic. It doesn’t get easier, even after 6 months of practice, and I haven’t even shaved time off my miles on it. It’s not even fun. While I’m running it I hate every minute. When I’m finished I feel broken, angry, and frustrated. It makes me want to quit running forever.
People always say you should do what you love, I am even guilty of saying that at times, but that’s kind of a misleading concept. If everyone only did what they loved, we would all find something else to bitch about. Born out of these bouts of running with hatred though are the really really good times. And I think if I ditched my hate run in favor of continual happy sunshine I would definitely take those good times for granted. I don’t know if this weekly ritual has had any play in making me better at running. I don’t even know if it’s just a masochistic endeavor that will end in injury someday. But for now hate running remains on my to do list.
I guess what it all boils down to is that I don’t think there is such a thing as being over-prepared. Brace yourself for the worst, expect the worst, and maybe you will come out pleasantly surprised, in running and in life (more…)

On Being Honest with Yourself… Plus Fall Virtual 10 Mile Recap

I know, I know, 2 race recaps in one week? But stick with me here, folks… I promise this will be worth it.
I announced on Sunday my commitment to showing a little more love to myself this month, and being mindful of that topic, I wanted to address the issue of being honest, especially to oneself. Quite frankly, sometimes it hurts to admit that maybe things aren’t going your way, or maybe you have to switch paths, but taking those issues head on can really do wonders for your mental health.

Example 1: As Much as I love Powerlifting – it wasn’t in my cards.

I dedicated the past few years of my life to powerlifting. I was very anti-cardio, always followed a strict plan, and I really wasn’t terrible at it. Unfortunately, within my resources, I would never be able to thrive. My career doesn’t afford for me to travel for days at a time to go to meets, because my location is not necessarily a hotspot for power lifting in general. There are no decent coaches near me. There are no training facilities for me to work in. Basically it was just me, my barbell, and a dream. (more…)

Reason #7 Why I Love to Run

Who are we really trying to kid here?

Reason number 7 that I love to run was something I discovered this weekend at the Lee Foster Memorial 5 Mile Run in Saint Marys (being the 7th race of my life – and my quest to 30, I thought it was fitting).
Let me start this recap by saying in the days leading up to this race, my motivation to go run it tanked dramatically. I don’t know why, but I was extremely nervous for this one. I knew it was just a flat out and back, I knew I could run 5 miles (seriously, I just ran 10 the Monday before, and it wasn’t a flat out and back!), but for some reason, I thought I was going to choke. Like straight up get to mile 2, fall on my face, and die alone on the street everyone would make fun of me. I even enlisted my mother in law to ride along so that I couldn’t back out last minute. I don’t know how I could come off of just completing aTough Mudder and get intimidated by a little local race, but it happened.
I’m so glad I got over it, because this race was really a blast. I ran without my GPS and put on one of my favorite Clutch albums for tunes, and just dropped the hammer. I soon found my pace with a girl close to my age and a man who was in his 70s, but they both were keeping about 10 seconds faster per mile than I could.


Just Shy of Crazy

Yesterday started off like any other. I woke up, wrangled the dogs for a little while, then laced up my Salamon’s for some backyard hill sprints. My current training program calls for track speed work today, but in the wonderful world of trail running, that’s about irrelevant right now, and the more proficient I get on these hills (both up and down) the better off I’m going to be.

After about a million four of those, I did a quick Tough Mudder inspired strength finisher ala carrying logs. There’s a quarter mile trail loop behind my house and I alternated 30 seconds overhead, 30 seconds out in front of me for a solid two loops with a chunk of log that probably weighs about 20 pounds.

My abs and quads were both pretty trashed, but I definitely felt like a bad ass afterwards, so I did what any sane human being would in said circumstance… I busted out the old credit card, and actually signed up for the Green Monster trail 25k I have been halfway training for since the beginning of the month.

At the very kindest, this race has been deemed a “suffer fest.” Decent finishing times are in the 3+ hour range. I obviously have my concerns, my friends and family do too, which is why I put off registering as long as I did. (more…)