Road Running

The Marathon


If you’ve run a marathon, you’ll appreciate this.

If you haven’t yet, it’s what you have to look forward too.

Only some of you will ever understand this.

This is bDean Karnazes from Runners World. You should check out his blog.

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The Marathon is not about running, it is about salvation. We spend so much of our lives doubting ourselves, thinking that we’re not good enough, not strong enough, not made of the right stuff. The Marathon is an opportunity for redemption. Opportunity, because the outcome is uncertain. Opportunity, because it is up to you, and only you, to make it happen.

There is no luck involved in finishing the Marathon, the ingredients required to tackle this formidable challenge are straightforward: commitment, sacrifice, grit, and raw determination. Plain and simple.

So you set about your training to prepare your body for the rigors of running 26.2 miles. You refuse to compromise, dedicating yourself wholeheartedly to the contest ahead, pouring everything you’ve got into it. But you know the Marathon will ask for more. In the dark recesses of your mind, a gloomy voice is saying, you can’t. You do your best to ignore this self-doubt, but the voice won’t go away.

The Marathon rattles you to the core. It deconstructs your very essence, stripping away all your protective barriers and exposing your inner soul. When you are at your most vulnerable, the Marathon shows no pity. The Marathon tells you that it will hurt you, that it will leave you demoralized and defeated, crushed in a lifeless heap alongside the roadside. The Marathon tells you can’t do it. “Ha!” it torments you, “In your dreams…”

You fight back, however, and stand courageously at that starting line, nervously awaiting that gun to go off. When it does, you put your head down and charge into the abyss, knowing honestly in your heart of hearts that you either paid your dues or that you skimped along the way. There is no lying to yourself here, the Marathon sees right through excuses, shortcuts, and self-transgressions.

All goes well for the first half. But slowly, step-by-step, the pain mounts and the intensity of the endeavor amplifies. You remain steadfast, knowing that you did not skimp, that you did not take shortcuts, that every footstep was earned through months of rigorous preparation and hard work. Still, with each draining thrust forward, that little nagging inclination of self-doubt in the back of your mind progressively advances into your awareness.

Then, at mile 20, the voice looms louder than ever. It hurts so bad you want to stop. You must stop. But you don’t stop. This time, you ignore the voice, you tune out the naysayers who tell you that you’re not good enough, and you listen only to the passion within your heart. This burning desire tells you to keep moving forward, to continue putting one foot in front of the other no matter the consequences.

Courage comes in many forms. Today you will have the courage to keep trying and not give up regardless of how dire things become. And indeed dire they do become. At the 26-mile mark you can barely see the course any longer, your vision is faltering as you teeter precariously on the edge of consciousness.

And then, suddenly, the finish line looms before you. Tears stream down your face as you realize you might make it. Now, finally, after years of torment you can answer back to that nagging voice of uncertainty in your head with a resounding: Oh yes I can!

You burst across the finish line and are liberated from the prison of self-doubt and limitations that have held you captive. You have learned more about yourself in the past 26.2-miles than you have known in a previous lifetime. You have forever freed yourself from those chains that had previously held you captive. Even if you can’t move for a week, never have you been so free.

As they carry you away from the finish line, wrapped in a flimsy Mylar blanket, barely able to keep your head raised, you are at peace. That daunting adversary that has haunted you an entire lifetime is now your liberator, your fondest ally. You have done what few will ever do—you have done what you thought you could never do—and it is the most glorious, unforgettable awakening ever.

You are, above all, a Marathoner, and you will wear this distinction not on the medal they place around your neck, but deep inside your heart, for the rest of your God given years. Nothing can ever take that away from you. You are a Marathoner.

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Categories: Inspiration, Marathon Training, Road Running | Leave a comment

Tried a Tempo Run


So for my run today, I thought I’d try a tempo run. I didn’t do it exactly right since I ran quite a bit faster than I have been for a 5K distance but it was still about 20 seconds slower than my fastest 5K time so maybe it wasn’t too wrong.

12 June 13 Run 1

May main goal today was to try to maintain a consistent pace throughout regardless of going uphill or downhill. I think it wasn’t too bad for my first attempt.

12 June 13 Run 2

Overall, pretty satisfied. Especially with the much faster time. I’ll be under 11 min/mi before you know it.

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Great End to a Great Week


I’m pretty satisfied with my progress this week. Today’s run just added to the list of successes. I’ve continued to gradually increase my distance each week and soon it will be in leaps and bounds. Today was a 10K+ with some very steep hills.

8 June 13 Run

 

Hills are tough but worth it. It was a bit warmer than what I have been used to but it really wasn’t bad.  There was lots of shade and I brought water.

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I’m really lucky to have such a nice place to run and plenty of different routes to choose from. I don’t really like running on the busier roads.

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A big shout out to all you virtual running buddies that follow my blog, you help keep me going! 🙂

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What a Week So Far!


It actually started last week on Saturday. I had an amazing time at my first Spartan Race. It was a 4 mile sprint at the Tuxedo Ridge Ski Resort in New York.

Before

Before

 I had to run up and down the mountain at least four times. Carrying, dragging, lifting, climbing, pulling, and crawling.

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It was an awesome experience!

After, a SPARTAN!

After, a SPARTAN!

The result?  

Spartan Sprint Stats

I was super sore after that race and utterly exhausted. I took a few day off to recover.

After that on Wednesday I went for a run. I was shooting for 4.5 miles but was feeling inspired so I went for 5. I went a little later than I normally do and it was a nice change.

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I felt really good and I think it showed in my times.

5 June 13 Run

My next runs are on Friday and Saturday. Not sure if the weather will support but if not, I’m hitting the dreaded treadmill AND getting back into my morning workouts!

 

Categories: Races, Road Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Getting Back in the Groove After a Rough Week


Last week was rough. I only worked out twice and didn’t run at all. I had to work late a few times, the weather was bad, not feeling motivated, just all kinds of excuses. And to be completely honest, that all they were, excuses. What I needed to get back to it this…

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This is becoming my decision-making process.

Yesterday I had a good workout. A lot of new exercises to learn. I love variety. Protein with BCAAs afterward kept me feeling good. Another one before bed helped my legs, especially my quads, feel a lot less tired when I wake up.

I decided to up my short run mileage to 4 which is what I was going to be at this week anyway.

28 May 13 Run

The pace was where I was shooting for but it was too easy. I will try a little faster on the next one. I was a nice cool day and very enjoyable.

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This might be the last cool day for a while. It is supposed to be close to 90 on my next run day, which is hot for here and much hotter than it’s been since last year. I’ll definitely be bringing water.

Categories: Road Running, Workouts | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Week Three in the Books


The last run of the week is done. It was a great day for a run.

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This was my weekly LSD run and I’m pretty pleased with it. I was able to keep my pace about a minute slower than the rest of the week which is about where I hoped it would be.

18 May 13 Run

I hit my goal of 5.5 miles and tried to keep it nice and relaxed. It wasn’t easy though.

Selfy at mile 5 with me trying to smile for the camera.

Selfy at mile 5 with me trying to smile for the camera.

This picture makes me laugh. Taking a picture of myself while running and watching out for cars is a little harder than I thought it would be.

Well that’s a wrap for the week. Full rest day tomorrow.

Categories: Road Running | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Finally Friday


It’s Friday! It’s been a long week and I had a little trouble getting up today but I did. At least I get to sleep in a little longer tomorrow. My morning workout was pretty good and I’m happy that I’m able to get closer to the correct pace  and take shorter and shorter breaks.  Who knows, maybe I’ll be able to complete the full workout in a couple of weeks!

After work I set off for my run.

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It was a nice day and I had to decide whether to run my normal route or the “uphill both ways” route I ran on Wednesday. I figured I’d try the new route to see if I could run it a little faster. I did.

17 May 13 Run

This run beats my last best pace by 6 sec/mi. You can see this is a pretty hilly route. I felt really good during this run even though the hills were a real bugger. I still want to see how I do on a flat surface for the entire run. I know the hills are really good for my running though.

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Tomorrow will be my LSD run. I’ll probably shoot for 5.5 miles since my last one was 5 miles.

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Pretty Good Run


I had a pretty good run today. I went on a new route and I swear it was uphill all the way to the turn around and halfway back. I guess it was an optical illusion. I’m thinking about going to a nice level track every once in a while to see how I do. The only problem is I HATE running on a track. I did keep my pace at  under 12:00 min/mi today which was my goal.

15 May 13 Run

To be honest I didn’t really want to even go today, for that matter I didn’t want to get up for my workout this morning either. I was thinking of excuses like It’s probably going to rain but I knew I would regret not going and in the end I very glad I did both.

I’m planning my next run for Friday and then a LSD run on Saturday. Next week I will start gradually increasing my miles.

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Another Great Run


A very good run this evening.

13 May 13 Run

 

This a 2 sec/mi improvement over my last run. I was afraid that the last run was a fluke but I was able to keep up that pace during this run. I feel pretty good about it. It was a beautiful day for a run which really helped I think.

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Now to keep up the pace for the rest of the week!

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Week 3 – 2nd Fit Test


I decided to keep my full rest day yesterday for recovery, even though last week was a light week overall, which I’m not ecstatic about. But that was then and this is now so, moving on!

I started my third week strong. My morning workout consisted of my second Fit Test and I made about a 25% improvement over my first Fit Test when I started this whole thing.  I feel pretty good about it. I got some new compression shorts this weekend and boy what a difference they make.

It look like it’s going to e a great day for a run this afternoon. Trying to decide, LSD or normal 5K. I guess I really need to develop a more structured schedule instead of the one in my head.

Categories: Road Running, Workouts | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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