Saturday, February 23, 2008

I Must Be a Runner

ARGH! We got 9 inches of snow last night (yesterday and through the night), with more still falling. It's 90 minutes before race time, and I have to shovel the driveway. That is my cross-training today instead of the 5K race.

Problem is, I am sure that even though my driveway will be done in a half hour (my husband shoveled 3 times yesterday, so there isn't 9 inches to do today), the rest of the area will still be snowy! I had a very hard time racing when there was ice on the sidewalks. This time it would be through snowdrifts.

Hmm, maybe a real runner would see the snowdrifts as hurdles and keep racing. Not me. Maybe I am not really a runner. I am just frustrated that I can't race. Last weekend I couldn't go, and next weekend the running club is sponsoring a 30K that I will be volunteering at, so likely won't be able to race next weekend either. It is starting to sound like excuses. I am going to get creative in the snow with running. I'll walk the dog wearing boots - so I get milage in. I'll do 30 minutes of lifting (snow - it is heavy) - gotta keep those arms happy. I'll set the timer and do 5 sets of 3-minute stair intervals - going up and down the two flights of stairs in my house. Possibly, I'll get in sit ups as I keep getting out of a sled, oh and then more lifting/dragging my son and the sled up the hill again.

Anyone got other ideas for indoor/outdoor snow cross training?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Do the Clothes Make the Man?

I went shopping for running clothes yesterday. The running store does not have clothes for the large runner. I was a size 26/28 (3X) last July, and I still think of myself as that. I've lost 30+ pounds, and I am exercising, so I usually do wear 22/24 (2X) shirts and 24W pants.

After looking at the running store when I got my shoes a few weeks ago, I realized I would have a little trouble. C. at the running club mentioned trying the men's department at WalMart. You may remember an earlier blog about having to wear my husband's sweat pants because women's in that size don't have drawstrings...

The men's running pants fit great, but were way too long. I am not a seamstress enough to hem the fabric. But, the running shirt fit fine. Very clingy - shows off the curves. But, it fit. The women's running shirts are cut weird and have a shelf on the inside. Do they think that little shelf will act as a running bra for big girls?! It's a joke. And, I am too self-conscious to wear it and my running bra showing through. (But hey, they did have a women's workout shirt in size 20.)

I did find in the ladies section - running pants and a jacket. The pants don't have a drawstring still. The set was size XL - 16/18! My step-dad would have said that I look like 10 pounds of sausage in a 5 pound casing, but I will grow (down) to them. I wore them for a run last night, and they kept the sweat away. My socks were soaked, but the rest of me was ok. But, it was colder running in them then the sweat shirt and t-shirt material.

Best thing - I bought something in the regular size section of the store - not the plus size!

Better Week

I have had a much better week. There hasn't been the ice on the roads/sidewalks, so I have been able to run more. I was out exercising last week in the ice, I just couldn't run - it was too slick. This week, I have pushed the running too, and last night I could run almost the entire 0.5miles in the middle of our 1.7mile loop. That's big. It was a lot further running than I had done before. It's a slow run (really more of a jog). BUT, I am ready for this Saturday! (5K #3). Thanks K for asking when the next one is. The last one was done in 44:00 minutes. I want to be a little faster each time. Here's to 43:59!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Weather Week

I was frustrated last week - it was always rain and ice all week long. SO, I didn't run last week. I did walk with the dog, but no running. I had to wear boots, and watch for ice patches. I didn't do the 5K this weekend either. It was planned to miss it, but I still feel guilty. So, as much as I don't like to run, I missed it.

I ran on Sunday - with the dog. Let me tell you, I can run better without him. I'll give better updates this week. I hopefully will get to run this week.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Joined a Running Club

I joined the Central Mass Striders club this weekend. They are the running group that hosts the Saturday races, as well as other training and events. I paid my $20 joining fee. I look at it as a motivational cost. They will keep me aware of my running.

So, I joined, ran my race, then was asked to "do the 30K" race that is coming up. I nearly fainted. The woman who asked, must have seen all the blood rush from my face, because she quickly explained that she needs volunteers for the race day - and wasn't asking me to run. So, I will likely volunteer for a large race for a few hours. That way, I can even see "behind the scenes", to help prepare for Disney. I guess I really am planning to run a marathon. Wow.

The CMS have long distance runs available too. So, I will work up to those. Right now, I am still working on my original training plan of being able to jog the whole 5K at one time. By the end of March. End of March looks pretty close from the back of the pack here.

Second 5K

I ran the 5K again this weekend. And, I did it faster - 10:48 faster in fact! I really pushed myself. And i did think, if this is how A felt last week when I pushed her, I better apologize. :-)

I didn't start early, like I had planned. My son NEEDED me to play Monopoly with him, and make breakfast, and get him dressed and a few other things. So, I only had ~5 minutes before the race. I started with everyone else, and we went the opposite direction as last time.

All the real runners said that direction was better. Let me tell you - I liked the first direction best. This week, I had to keep crossing the road to face traffic. If I was in a pack of runners, I probably would have felt better running in the road with traffic, but I was run/walk and the pack left me far behind early. But, I think starting at the same time as everyone else did inspire me to keep running - I didn't want to hold them up.

I met another new comer to this race (her second time too). She's been running since June, when she quit smoking and joined WW and has since lost 60 pounds. She was at the finish line waiting for me and cheering me on. What a great bunch of folks.

Another woman we met last week was running this week. (Last week she was the timer.) She started running at age 39 and now 6 years later has run 37 marathons. She did say at the beginning of the race, "I don't like these distances." I'm thinkin' "I don't like these distances because they are soooo long." Of course, she meant they were too short. My sister told me that a real runner thinks of a marathon as a 5K with just a 23.1 mile warm up. That is this woman.

I am pretty sure I was dead last again - but dead last finish beats did not finish beats did not start. I feel like now I can say I have really started to train for a long run. My time was pretty good this week - now I just have to keep that pace up for another six hours and I'll be ready for a marathon.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Running Gear

Warning - this discusses running bras for larger women

I ordered an Enell bra for running. I measured, and I am 40"/47". That is 40G (or 40DDDD) in regular sizes. (Hope you heeded the warning above.) I always wear bras a size too small, because they don't go large enough into my size. So, I ordered an Enell size 5 and a size 4 - since I figure I will lose weight with the running. The size 5 is a little too big! I haven't had a bra that we too big before. I ordered the 5 because of the size listing on the website. It definately squished them in - but there is material at the top that if I wear it more than my 3 miles now would probably start chafing. I didn't notice chafing - but people have said to beware of it. The size 4 can hardly be buttoned though. I know it is to be tight, but I may not be ready just yet for it. Or, I don't have the body-type that works for this bra.

I ran with it yesterday (the size 5). I didn't notice much jiggle and bounce. But, today things seem a little more tender. Could be time of the month, or could be poor support. (I feel it in my chest and in my upper back.) Could also be that I pushed myself harder yesterday. Although, I have been running in a daily wear bra that squishes, but isn't made for heavy duty long term wear. I'll keep wearing the size 5 and let you know. It is likely an early running bra - oh, my first "training" bra.

I would suggest - try the bra on before getting it. I bought mine by internet because there isn't a store that sells them near me. I am sure the online store would take returns. The way the bra sizes go, they give you a wide range for sizing but you want to be sure there isn't extra fabric in any area.

One other comment - these are heavy duty. My husband C thinks they look like biking shorts when they were just sitting on the desk. They have a wide band and no cups.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Tuesday workout

We ran the 5K on Saturday, then Sunday was busy, so I only did a 1.2 fast walk with the dog. Monday I worked very late, so I didn't walk the dog at all. (I did do a lot of stairs and lifting at work...) So, last night (Tuesday), I did a run/walk 1.7 mile workout. It made me realize, I will not be running the first 0.5miles of the 5K coming up. But, I still hope to do it in under an hour again. And, I keep thinking about the course for the 5K - it didn't feel like 3.1 miles. But, it was (we clocked it with the car afterwards as well). Must have been my company keeping me from feeling it. I am going to feel it this week.
I forgot to mention that I came in 19th of 19. I was third in my class - or is it division? M was first, A was second and I was third. Maybe this week without them there, I will be first in my division. If so, I am going to post the link to the running club list!

First 5K

Well, we did it! My sister M, my friend A and I completed our first 5K in a while. For me it had been about 10 years, and for A it was 2 years since our last 5K. All in all, not bad. M did great!!! She finished first in her class. And, she beat her pre-race set goal. A and I wanted to finish in less than an hour. Then on the course we said, let's make that 1:10. Well, we did it in 54:48! So, we beat our pre-race set goal. I was so proud of these two women with me. M ran the whole way. She paced it well - and pushed it. A and I ran/walked/ran/walked. A really pushed herself. I am so glad we did it.
When we finished, we found the rest of the runners waiting for us. We completed the board, so they could post the results. Then, A & I won prizes in the raffle. There was a yummy looking zucchini bread to choose, but I picked running gloves. I felt proud then to - because I love zucchini bread.
I am planning to go again this weekend and ask for an early start. I can start 15 minutes ahead of the rest of the pack. I hope to do it in 50 minutes. That means, everyone else will pass me on the route, but I won't feel that I am holding them back at the end. The "no excuses" commercial that I have posted lists "I don't want to hold you up" as an excuse. So, I am working around that.
I like to think I can do it faster, because I wasn't completely wiped out at the end. After the 5K, we drove the route to talk about what everyone was thinking at each leg of the race. Then, I went home and walked the dog. Poor dog - we only did the 1.7 mile loop, not the 2.2 mile loop he likes better. But, I am worried that without a buddy I will lag - especially on the hills.
So, I still hate running - but I am looking forward to next week's run when I will push my limits harder.
Oh, and I asked for information about joining the running club. The lady said, here is the info table, and be sure to take this flyer. It was a flyer for running id - so if you collapse on the course, they can find out who you are (for medical emergencies). Hmm....