Archive for May, 2012

After a hot and humid Mini-Marathon half marathon two weeks ago and two weeks of tight calves, I was not feeling motivated to run the Geist Half Marathon this weekend. Besides that, wrapping up things for the year at school had taken my energy and focus (graduation ceremony, preparing for field day, packing, grades, etc.). Just getting to the start line proved a frustrating venture.

When we got our race packets Friday evening, I found that my start corral was ‘F.’ What? F? My start was in corral ‘D’ two weeks ago. There was no seeding for the Geist Half at registration, placement was based on the pace time you entered. Obviously there were a lot of people with high aspirations.

That morning, I got up late. I just wasn’t feeling it, but I had to get going. That put us (my husband and me) behind schedule. We hit almost every red light. We parked, and as we got out of the car I realized that I had forgotten my watch. My husband went on to the start as I slapped on some expired sunscreen, but he could not get into corral ‘B’ due to overcrowding, which of course was my fault. I got to my corral just as the race was starting and had to dodge and pass those high aspiration runners for a little over a mile.

Then, something wonderful happened. The one mile marker showed my pace at around a 9:20 mile, the same as the Mini two weeks ago. I figured that was a good sign. As I passed each mile marker, my time was under a 10 minute pace. It felt good to run hard and release the stress of my earlier frustrations.

Around mile five, I needed to release something else. I moved to the side and started to walk, thinking I could discreetly release some pressure. A bicycle police officer shouted across the throng of racers, “Runner, are you okay?” No, no, no! You are not supposed to draw attention to me! I wondered if he could read that in my eyes. I took a quick glance around for a possible alternate, but oh yeah, he was talking to me. I waved a hand and shouted, “I’m good,” as I let ‘er rip. I didn’t see a reaction from any runners, thank goodness.

Around mile 10, I got a pebble in my shoe, but I was too excited about my time to stop and take it out. The last three miles were slower, and not just because of the pebble, but I still finished strong. At the end, I had a personal best half marathon time (2:11:22)! 

Lesson learned:  Even when you feel like you don’t have it in you, push on, do your best with what you have, keep your focus, and you might be surprised. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt to say a little prayer to the One looking out for you.

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Today was the Indianapolis 500 Festival Mini-Marathon (half marathon). It really has OneAmerica in the title, but I prefer tradition over corporate naming rights. It is the third 500 Mini that I have run; I have walked 10 or so. This year was one of the hardest half marathons I have ever raced for two reasons. 

One, I prefer cooler weather for running (somewhere in the 40s – 50s), and although the starting temperature was in the upper 60s, the humidity was above 90%. Three-fourths of the way through, the temperature was in the lower 70s, but still high 80s for humidity, with bright sunshine. Oh, and I lost my favorite sunglasses while I was stretching pre-race; so Dawn of me. I did take off my tank top and wore my stylish sports bra proudly. Maybe not cool, but cooler. 

 Two, the heat and humidity caused my digestive system to give me problems. Well, I can’t blame it all on the weather. I figured I would have some issues when I didn’t, um, have a BM on Friday…very unpleasant side of running. I had cramping and gas, so almost half way through I thought I might make a pit stop (literally a pit). I didn’t want to have to wrestle my damp compression shorts back on in a hot box port-o-toilet, so I figured I would just suffer through. At mile 10, I decided I would have much more fun if I just went to the bathroom, only at this point I couldn’t find one. I was afraid to pass any more gas, thinking I might have a total blowout. So, I put up with my bowel distress until after the race. I emptied four times in four hours. This would be a blessing if I were having a colonoscopy tomorrow.

Even with these un-pleasantries, I finished with my second best half marathon time at 2:18:25! I will take it, with the goal of better planning in the digestion department for the next race (in two weeks).

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When I started eliminating foods from my diet, I dreaded grocery shopping. Everywhere I looked were my favorite foods that I could not eat, anymore (bread, fruits, vegetables, cookies, sausage, hot dogs, yogurt, ice cream, cheese, etc.) I felt an empty sadness as I picked up my ground beef and green beans.

Now, I get excited when I think about the new things I can try. Unsweetened, vanilla almond milk warmed up with a hint of coco and stevia is a great alternative to hot chocolate (just the milk warmed up is yummy). Pop cakes (4 carbs and no sugars!) with some natural, lightly salted almond butter is a yummy snack, especially with an almond milk chaser. Black bean and rice chips do not raise your glycemic level like corn tortilla chips. You don’t want to eat too many, though; they are beans, after all. Every day I find some new food delight to try. I feel like a wonderful, new world of food is opening up, and the food is real and good for me!

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