Saturday, 19 May 2007

This blog has moved.

And since this blog links to my other blog which identifies me as a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous - I am not going to link this blog to my new blog. Yikes! That sounds very convoluted.

But I wanted to have a blog where I could use my full name and a picture. I take the tradition of anonymity very seriously, so I didn't want to break it here.

I have individually let people know where my new blog is. If you don't know and would like to know, please send me an e-mail.


Saturday, 5 May 2007

Organized Run

This morning I went on a run organized by a local running club. Yesterday I sent the organizer guy an e-mail telling him that after looking over the details, I was not going to participate - since the slowest group was going to be running at my fastest pace, and I didn't want to get discouraged. He assured me that I would be fine, not to worry, they would be slow, and to come out... so I did.

At the two mile point, I was running alone. All alone. Crying. Pitifully crying. Watching everyone leave me was so disheartening - I can't begin to tell you. I could tell you the childhood issues this triggers, but then I would sound like a slow nutcase. Not just a slow old woman. A slow nutcase old woman. Okay, I will tell you anyway - I am the youngest of five - all my childhood, I watched them all be able to do things I couldn't... run faster, go places, etc. and leave me behind. And so it happens again...

I decided not to extend my misery by running the 6 miles I intended... so I turned around at 2 miles. A lovely woman who had introduced herself at the beginning of the run turned around and ran back to the water stop to see how I was doing. When I told her (sobbing like a small child) she said she would go back with me. She ran with me at the slow 11:55 pace I was running this morning, and we talked and ran together. Thank God for angels like Lana. What an act of unselfishness. Thank you to Lana and all the other angels who are so kind.

I did get to talk with a couple of middle-aged female marathoners after the run. They were very encouraging. After I left I considered the fact that I had joined with people who are in a running club. They are probably fast runners. I am slow, I know I am slow. I just need to get over it.

It is 2 weeks until the race. I just have to get my attitude back.

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Running along the beach in Galveston, TX

I snapped this picture with my cell phone on Saturday morning. I got to see the most beautiful sunrise - as I ran along the beach! It was very cool. Running at sea level is enlightening - to put it mildly. If I had more time, I think I could have run forever. 6,000 feet altitude makes a difference in the way a run feels.

I have only 19 more days until my half-marathon. I spend a bit of time thinking I am not ready, but reality tells me I am ready. I just got done running 10 and a half miles - in some seriously hilly terrain. My time wasn't bad.. It was 2 hours 1 minute. (I TOLD you I was slow!)

Here is a question: When you are taking a run that lasts two hours or more, what do you do about water/fluids? I had an energy gel in my sports bra, and had that at about 6 miles. I stopped at a gas station at 3 miles and bought a powerade - and carried the remaining miles with me. That is a pain and I think it really slows me down. But I can't run for that long without replenishing some fluids... what do y'all do? (Thanks for any feeback on that!)

Saturday, 21 April 2007

29 days...

I just finished a great and fabulous 10 mile run. Now don't get the idea that my time was great, because clearly it wasn't. However, 4 miles into my run, I started crying. Why? you ask... because I realized that I was NOT in pain!!! Now why does it take 4 miles to realize that? I don't know, but the important thing is that I did realize it. When I got home I counted my times and realized that I had negative splits. Slow, but negative. The first mile is straight uphill, so I am sure that is a factor... and don't forget I am at 6,ooo ft. altitude!

This week I took money and a credit card with me. I stopped at the only retail opportunity on my path, at a gas station at about 5 miles. I bought a bottle of powerade and drank it!

So, this week I missed a day (which may have served me well considering I am painless for the first time in months), and ran 17.13 miles. I am happy with that.

And for any old people who run with an iPod - I downloaded the BEST song last night. Corny, yes, but fun, fun, fun to run to.
"Slow Boat to China" by Bette Midler.

I feel happy and strong this morning.

Saturday, 14 April 2007

5 weeks til the race

This is a cell phone photo from this morning's run. It was a beautiful morning so I decided to take a different route. I got too far from home and ended up running 10.5 miles when I was aiming for an 8 mile run. But it bumped up my weekly mileage to an all-time high of 25.06 miles.

Here is a question: The Bolder Boulder 10K race is one week and one day after my half-marathon. Does anyone think it is reasonable to run a 10K race just a little over a week after doing my first half-marathon? I would dearly love to do this race because it was the first race I ever ran - 20 years ago. It makes me want to cry just to write that. At that time, I was 35 years old, a heavy smoker, and not much of a jock. But I had youth on my side and was able to finish the race. Now I am 55 years old, I haven't had a cigarette in 16 years (or a drink in 22 and a half years) and have been running consistently for four years... slow as I am. Any thoughts?


Saturday, 7 April 2007

Icy Easter Weekend

That's the snow and ice encrusted cord from my iPod after yesterday's run. The entire front of me was a sheet of ice. That being said - I enjoyed the run immensely! Who knows why... I just felt good. I ran only a 5K, thinking today would be my long run. Today I doubt that I am getting out in it due to ice all over the streets and sidewalks. On my trip to the church and the grocery store this morning I saw 2 bad accidents within a couple of miles. I can take a hint!

I am worried about my lack of mileage. I hope that I will be able to increase it this week. We are now 6 weeks out from the race!

Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Moonlit run

The moon was so beautiful as it set over the mountains this morning I just had to take a picture. However, my cell phone doesn't produce the highest quality photos. But I wanted to post something positive about a run.

Yesterday I ran 3.64 miles. This morning I ran 5 miles. It is a beautiful morning, in the upper 30s, a clear early spring morning. I feel like I might be back on track! I cannot wait for my half-marathon. When I run, I dream of what it will feel like to be running along mile after mile of Colfax Avenue.

Sunday, 1 April 2007

7 weeks til the Colorado Colfax Marathon

Isn't it funny that I am not worried about running 13.1 miles in the half-marathon - but I am mostly worried that continuing to train for it is just asking for injury. I have really backed off the mileage. I hope I don't regret it.

I ran only 11.73 miles last week. Here are the reasons for the low mileage: we had snow 2 days, high winds a couple more, I had insomnia for four night and felt horrible! In March my total was 75.59 miles. As I write that, I realize that really IS a lot of miles. I ran 90 miles in January... so getting down under 20 miles a week seems like "slacking" to me.

The other discouragements are: I have gained a bit of weight. When I tell people this, they assure me that as I train, I am gaining muscle and changing my body composition. It would be nice to believe that, but the fact that my jeans are now tight, and my belly is now slightly hanging over tells me that this is not muscle and it is not good. But I have to eat to train and I am doing just that! The other discouraging thing is that my times for my runs are slowing. I think this means I am going to have to get back on the treadmill once or twice a week. Instead of the wonderful runs outdoors daydreaming with the trees and the fresh air, I need to get on the dreadmill at the gym - where I can set the pace to a 9 or 10 minute mile and work on some speed.

I can't believe I am looking forward to training for the triathlon because it will be a break from the half-marathon training. It is fun to ride a bike and swim. Bike riding is my favorite sport of all time, and I am even good at it! I find swimming almost meditative.

Thanks for the encouraging comments. I really appreciate you bloggers!

Saturday, 24 March 2007

March 18 - 24

I ran 15.32 miles. I just spent about 5 minutes trying to 'strike through' the word "ONLY", as in I "ONLY" ran 15.32 miles this week. Today I "ONLY" ran 7.2 miles - see the above photo - it was pouring rain and 40 degrees. And, it was the most wonderful run I have had in a long time. But after an hour, I was soaked to the skin and I was worried about my iPod and my cell phone. There were little puddles of water inside the pockets of my windbreaker! When I got inside my house, I stood in front of the washing machine and just stripped all that dripping wet stuff off me and put it directly into the washer. It really was glorious.

Earlier this week I had such terrific hip pain, I decided to do some research. What I found scared the bejesus out of me. I thought I might have a stress fracture of the neck of the femur. Oh man. So I took a few days off. On Thursday I went to the pool and was encouraged that a half mile swim was totally painless, so I decided that I do not have a fracture. As I said, my run today was great, so I am not so worried. I know I can run the half-marathon, but I don't know if I can live through the training!

I found another great quote this week. I subscribed to Runner's World magazine and they sent me a little booklet called "Get Motivated Stay Motivated." I have become quite fond of John Bingham (The Penguin). I can so relate to so much of what he says. Here is a great quote from him in the book:

"My running shoes have become giant erasers on my feet. Every footstrike rubs away some memory of a previous indiscretion with food or smoke or drink. Every successful mile releases me from the grip of the demons of failure. Every starting line is another chance to prove that my past will not determine my future.

"When I am running, in training or in a race, I imagine myself as strong and swift and elegant. When I am running, I imagine myself striding gracefully through life with courage and pride. When I am running, I forget my failures as a child or parent or friend or lover. Through running, I create myself as I have always wanted to be."

He just described me to a "T"!

Saturday, 17 March 2007

3/11 - 3/17

I managed to log 22:11 miles this week. They mostly felt pretty good too. I have increased my stretching and I believe it is beginning to help me with running.

Sunday 3.10 miles
Tuesday 4 miles
Thursday 5 miles
Saturday 10 miles.

The ten miler this morning was great. I felt good. The sun was shining, and after 5 miles, I took off my jacket and wrapped it around my waist. It felt great to be out there in the sun. I repeated some affirmations to myself when I was challenged... like "I am a runner," & "I am a marathoner." I took that advice from one of the books I am reading.

I do believe I am going to be able to do this half-marathon. This morning, I tried to imagine what it will feel like to be running down Colfax Avenue - I am really looking forward to it.

Saturday, 10 March 2007

March 4-10

Tee Shirt from my very first race, the Bolder Boulder, Memorial Day, 1987. Twenty years ago. I will never forget the exhilaration of running into Folsom Stadium and crossing the finish line. I felt that every single person there was cheering solely for me. I finally had finished a race! (and I had a cigarette and matches tucked away in the tiny pocket of my little pink running shorts!)

This week was another week that wasn't what I thought it would be. I only managed to log 16.42 miles.

Monday 3.10

Weds. 4 miles

Friday 3.10

Saturday 6.20

I am not sure what I am doing wrong, but I am sure it is something because I am not feeling good like I was a month or so ago. Although I must say that I took a few seconds off my mile time on my 10K today. For me, it is difficult to go any faster than the snail's pace I seem to run at (between 11:21 and 11:43 per mile). The encouraging thing is that the farther the run, the better the time per mile.

I have been reading a lot about training. I also recently subscribed to Runner's World magazine. Yesterday I found something written by Michael Finkel in March's issue that I absolutely love - and relate to: "those who can't do sports, run,"And those who can't run, run far."

I cannot wait to see how this all turns out.

Saturday, 3 March 2007

Feb 25 - March 3

I got new shoes yesterday! I walked into the Boulder Running Company, pointed at the shoes and said, I would like a pair of these in size 9 please. I didn't try them on or anything. I put over 400 miles on the old ones, they were the best running shoes I have ever had. These new shoes should get me trained for a half-marathon. I will probably buy a new pair just before the event so that they have good springiness.

I ran 10 miles this morning, and it felt good for the most part. I bought a book on marathon training last week (The Non-Runner's Marathon Trainer) and decided to take the advice to run 4 days a week instead of five. But this week I had so much going on, and two of the days I thought I was going to run there was snow falling, so I only ran 3 days.

Monday 3.99 miles
Tuesday 3.10 miles
Saturday 10 miles

I ordered another training book last night. Debbi is using a book called "Marathoning for Mortals", it has plans for half-marathons as well as marathons, so perhaps this will be better than the other book. In any event, I can share these with my daughter - who is registered for both of the marathons with me.

Thanks for the words of encouragement from the other bloggers. I do appreciate it. I have noticed that this blog is pretty poorly written. I pride myself on my writing skills, but I generally write this just after my long run on Saturday morning, and I think my brain isn't in the best shape at this time. Oh well, thanks for bearing with me.

Saturday, 24 February 2007

Feb. 18-24

Another cell phone photo of Clement Park. BUT, you will note that some of the lake is actually thawing! I ran last night after work, my least favorite time to run, because it was supposed to snow today. But alas, the sun is shining today. I hope the weather will be nice tomorrow because I need to get a long run in.

I ran only 13.44 miles this week. 4 miles on Monday, 2.08 miles on Tuesday, 3.10 miles on Thursday, and 4.25 on Friday. My times are abysmal. I am not sure what I am doing wrong, but I am certain there is something wrong because instead of improving, my fitness seems to be declining.

One encouraging note... I have the Nike + iPod gadget, which gets me signed on for all of the wonderful functionality of Part of that is a leaderboard for each age group. In women 55 to 59 years old, I am now in 9th place in terms of total mileage. It really meant a lot to me to break the top ten.

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

Ethiopian Friend

I have an Ethiopian friend at work. He is a runner. I mean, a REAL runner. I talked to him today about my training and he thinks I am running too frequently. That I ought to try running 3 or 4 times a week, not five. And that I ought to run 10 miles max.

Then he went on to give me a pep talk that had me feeling like I could do anything! He said that in our culture, a woman of my age who can run 13 miles is rare indeed. He said in his culture, they run... but not here. That encouraged me. So, tomorrow, I am taking a day off!

Sunday, 18 February 2007

Feb 11-17

It was a less than stellar week. The 13.1 mile run on Saturday last week took absolutely everything I had. So, this week, I managed only to run 13.39 all week! I ran 3.11 on Monday, 3.12 on Thursday, and on Saturday I ran 7.16. I am really tired. I have talked to folks about the training and apparently I really didn't need to run the distance of a half-marathon. Mentally, I think I did need to do that. Physically, it probably wasn't the best decision.

I still have not bought a book on training, and I can see that I really need to do that!

Saturday, 10 February 2007

Feb 04-10

I did it! I ran 13.1 miles this morning! I just checked my time, which seems abysmal and miraculous all at the same time, against last year's race results and my time comes in 9th place in my age group - if I were doing the Colfax Marathon today. This sounds convoluted, I hope you know what I mean.

As I ran in the last 10th of a mile, I started sobbing. I was so blown away to have done this thing... all by myself at a park, running around a lake. And each time around, having people pass me as they sprinted their one, two or three miles. I would just smile and think, go ahead, I am 55 years old and I am going to run 13.1 miles today! I am so grateful that this old body will do this. I was talking to someone this morning about the back surgery I had 8 years ago, and I am glad I reminded myself of where I was a few years ago.

Other than that, I logged 23.92 miles this week. If not for the 13 miles this morning, it would have been a very short week. I was tired all week.

Saturday, 3 February 2007

Week of Jan 28 - Feb 3

I logged my all time high number of miles run in a week: 23. 29. I also finished my all time high month, in January I ran 90 miles!

Last Sunday I ran 8 miles in a park - around and around a lake. It was lovely. I was not in any hurry, the day was relatively warm - in the 40s, as opposed to the single digit temperatures we have been having. On Monday, I ran just over 5 miles, running around my neighborhood - which has good hills. On Weds., I ran 4 miles on the dreadmill. This morning I ran 6.2 at Clement Park. I would have taken a photo, but it would be identical to the one I posted 2 weeks ago.

I hope I am not over-training for a 55 year old woman. I feel good. I registered for another half-marathon this week! It is the Denver Marathon, and is held on October 14. So the highlights of this year will be the Colfax Marathon (half) on May 20. I am still not sure if I want to do the Danskin Triathon in July, but I know I want to do the Tri For the Cure on August 5. Then the Denver Marathon in October.

Thanks to anyone who has visited. I love your comments!

Saturday, 27 January 2007

Week of Jan 21-27

The weather cleared up for a couple of days this week. I was able to log a 20.46 mile week. This is the first week I have run over 20 miles since the middle of December when I first hurt my back, then got the flu, then fell on my tailbone!

I had a wonderful run outdoors yesterday morning. The video was taken about 2 miles into it. It was so great to be outdoors running, I was perhaps a bit too excited about the sun rising.

Disclosure: I started this blog in "new" blogger, seemingly totally separate from my other blog in "old" blogger. When I migrated my other blog into New Blogger - this blog went with it. I am too tired to start all over with this one, so I guess you all know (f you have seen my other blog) I am a recovering alcoholic. Which, by the way, is not a bad thing. It is however an AA tradition that we AA members always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films. So, you have my first and middle name... and I will now remove the picture of me, since it shouldn't be included if I am identifying myself as an AA member.

And thanks to anyone who has read this.

Sunday, 21 January 2007

Week of Jan 14 - 20

I Managed to run 18.3 miles this week. I only ran 4 days, due to weather. I hate running on the treadmill, but half of the miles were on the treadmill, including a 10K on Monday morning.

Yesterday I ran 6.2 miles around Clement Park. It was nice. It was cold and there were still patches of snow and ice, but it was nice. See above picture, taken after my run. It is of poor quality, taken on a cell phone, and it is certainly not a thing of beauty - but I want a reminder of what this past month has looked like, and that is definitely representative of the last month.

This week starts with more snow falling. I had planned on getting out to a park and running another 6.2 miles this morning, but I will wait and hopefully the snow will slow down. Perhaps I can get out later and put in a few miles on the dreaded treadmill.

I hope I never forget this dreadful winter. When I wake up on a spring or summer morning, the sun is shining, and I can go directly outside in shorts and a shirt and run safely on dry pavement, I hope I remember these dark, cold, snowy, and icy days.

Monday, 15 January 2007

Training for a Half Marathon

I registered for my first Half-Marathon on Friday, January 12. It is the Colorado Colfax Marathon on May 20. I am very excited about this. My daughter also registered with me.

Let me say that I am 55 years old. I smoked 2 packs a day for 25 years, but stopped 15 years ago. I had a cervical diskectomy and fusion of C3-C5 in 1999 and never thought I would run again. Sometimes when I am running I just smile from ear to ear because of the joy of it!

I ran in my youth (even though I smoked), but never real seriously. I always wanted to run a marathon, but never considered it even remotely possible. I started running again in 2003. In 2004, I trained for and completed my first sprint distance triathlon. I enjoyed it so much, I did another the next year, and another the year after that - and my 27 year old twin daughters joined me on that one!

In August of 2006, I purchased the Nike+ iPod stuff, and it has opened my eyes to the world of running. With the Nike + I have kept going and going when I would have quit before. On New Year's Day I ran 10 miles, and that is when I knew it was possible for me to train for a half-marathon. I am slow, but I am also old!

I have no idea how to do this. This morning after my 10K run, I went to the bookstore to buy a book on training for a marathon, but they didn't have any. I will order one online.

What an exciting journey! I hope there are other bloggers out there who can share in this journey with me.