Archive for June, 2012

Running Slump

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on June 28, 2012 by activerunner

for the passed few weeks I have been sick. Sick of running that is. I tried to run yesterday and after two miles that seemed to go on and on, I quit and didn’t care. I don’t even have the desire to run now or ever, which is strange for me. I think I can officially say I’m in a running slump! It happens to the best of us. The key is to realize you will eventually get out, but what do you do help speed the process?

Well, yesterday instead of running I went and played basketball with the boys. Basically when playing against guys the game becomes a series of runs up and down the court without touching the ball anyway. Guys struggle with the concept of passing especially to a girl. They don’t however show any hesitation to throw up a three even after they have air balled it the last five times. So it was as if I was running a distance run, just more stops than usual and no ball in sight. But that isn’t the point. (sorry i went off on a tangent there…) the point is I didn’t feel like I was running, but I was! I am still staying active. You are not going to get out of a slump by doing nothing. That can only cause one to sink further in until hope to climb out is slim.

So first thing you can do is try running different routes. I’m guilty of running the same route every day or I’ll run my route backwards… from finish to start. Although, literally running backwards would definitely help spice up a run.

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Anyway, I am always running around in my neighborhood and don’t usually stray too far. I think finding a route where there is more to see than just houses and cars would be beneficial. Distractions are always welcome when running. Trail running is something I’ve always wanted to get into. Different trails provide different sights, smells, challenges. And I’m sure it won’t become as monotonous as some other runs especially if there are hills involved.

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Music is a must for me when running. I created a playlist a long, long, long time ago and still listen to those same songs while out for a jog. This may be one of my problems, I’m sick of my music! Music can motivate runners to do amazing things, but if you don’t like the songs your focus turns to pain, boredom, or whatever and you question why you are running in the first place.

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Running games can help make running more fun. I recently bought an app on my I-pod called Zombies, Run! Image It basically puts you as the main character of a story in which you go on missions to out run zombies and gather supplies for your camp in order to survive the Zombie apocalypse. You can hear the Zombies in your head phones as well as the operator who checks in with you every so often. You can put your music with the story while you run and the operator will chime in between songs. Beware not to let the Zombies catch you… you lose points this way. This game is a good tool in getting runners to run faster! My only complaint is I can’t seem to get my GPS to work on it, so it doesn’t track my runs. Another game you can play is runners tag on the Nike Running App. ImageYou go for a run and it automatically logs your miles. Then you tag a friend who becomes It. Tough break. Your friend then must run faster or more miles than you in order to tag you back. Winner is the last one with the fastest time or most miles. A battle of pride is always a great tool for motivation.

Last suggestion for getting out of the hole. Try taking a break and doing something else for a while. you can’t feel guilty if you are still staying active. you should however feel tremendous guilt if you are letting your slump keep you from getting out there. Pick up a new healthy habit for a while. There are millions of things you can do to get exercise so that is not an excuse! take a break from running and do yoga, zumba, Cross-fit, go hiking, biking, swimming, roller blading, mountain climbing, or all the above instead. You have my approval. I know as much as anyone that running can get old.

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Ragnar 2012

Posted in Races with tags , , on June 17, 2012 by activerunner

I survived the Ragnar! But just barely. My little pre race freak out seemed to be justified. I probably should have freaked out a little more than I did. I ran all three legs of my race without walking and felt that was quite the accomplishment considering how much I wanted to die on my last one. Now as a result, I can no longer walk period. But I got a medal, so I guess that makes it worth it…??

I was runner number one, or in other words the number one runner! just kidding. But I had the wonderful opportunity to start the race. But my team and I arrived a bit late so checking in was a little crazy, and then I was rushed to the starting line with out a proper warm up. Good thing the number one runner doesn’t need a warm up!

So there I am waiting for the end of the count down, 10, 9, 8… You get the picture. I start off, running with confidence. I even have a smile on my face thinking, “I’m running the Ragnar! What an accomplishment.” I think that thought came a little too soon because then I came to a huge mountain. So I ventured up, and up, and up! I hit the dirt road and it goes up more! My quads are burning, I’m getting tired and I’ve only put a couple miles behind me with six more to go. Finally the downhill arrives, what a relief! Except.. it’s a very steep winding road of gravel. I almost fell down the mountain more than once. I return to flat ground again and start gaining on this guy, but he won’t let me pass him. So, I start following close thinking I’ll get him in the end. Well the guy leads me astray and we miss a turn. We are going the wrong way! Good thing a van caught up with us and told us to turn around. So leg one was definetly the most dramatic. But I finished running roughly at a 7 minute mile pace. The leg was 7.7 miles long.

Second leg was an 8.4 mile down hill. And I know this sounds like a dream come true but it killed my quads. I started the race strong and overly confident. It was all down hill… Easy!! Well four miles in and my quad muscles ached. But I refused to slow down. I enjoyed passing people too much. This run definitely had the most amazing view! If I wasn’t in such a hurry to win I would have taken a picture. Once I had stopped running however, I could barely make it to the car. I ran this race at a 6:48 mile pace. I was proud but in pain.

After the rest of my van finished their legs, they all did an amazing job by the way, van two took over and we had a chance to get some sleep. We had a bed in the back of the truck and let’s just say I didn’t sleep very well. I was a little squished, it was freezing, and the other teams and runners wouldn’t shut up.
My next leg was at 7am and it came too fast. My legs felt stiff and more sore than ever. I could hardly walk at that point, how was I supposed to run?? Well one thing I learned from this race is that I’m stubborn… I don’t walk. And You can do anything if you set your mind to it. Your body can handle a lot more than you think it can. I ran those last five miles the best I could. I know I looked like a gimp running stiff as a board. But I finished with an 8:49 mile pace, which is really slow for me. And as soon as I finished I sat down and didn’t get up until one of my teammates came to find me.
But I finished!! My whole team finished. We ran 197 miles all together. I ran 22 of those miles myself without stopping. I met new people and had fun working toward the finish line. That is what my medal represents. So yes, i’d say it was worth it!


Pre Race Freak Out.

Posted in Races with tags , , on June 14, 2012 by activerunner

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So the Ragnar is tomorrow and I have been training for quite some time now. But, despite all my hard work, with the race being so soon, I don’t feel ready. No need to freak out right? I mean this is a common feeling before a nice, long, perhaps too long of a race, in which you get very little sleep and yet are expected to run three races within a two day period. But I’ve got to be positive because i have been training hard. I’m ready…

but come to find out I’m running a lot more miles in this thing than I originally planned. I was told each of my legs would be around five to six miles… Pah! That was a lie. My first leg is 8.7 miles. I’m running 22 miles total!! That’s almost a marathon. I didn’t sign up for a marathon, I certainly haven’t been training for one. Plus, two weeks ago I started my summer job as a lawn mower. I come home every afternoon a little tired, a bit hot, and a light shade of green. Needless to say, my motivation to run started to dwindle and my work outs suffered.

So much for being positive eh? But I have come to a decision; I am going to trust that my training and hard work is sufficient. After all I have ran many miles, interval trained, worked in the heat, played soccer, played basketball, played more soccer, purchased new running shoes, and more importantly I’ve done my best. And that is all I can do.
So tomorrow… big day! Nothing to freak out over. It is just a race and I’m ready… I think.

YOLO

Posted in Camping/hiking with tags , , on June 3, 2012 by activerunner

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Spring has been quite the season.  I have spent my days coaching track, running, substitute teaching, more running, playing soccer, and… oh yeah… running.  I’ve been busy, tired, and recently a little burned out!  Now that School has finally ended I decided to get away from my hectic everyday life and go camping at City of Rocks in Idaho.  I think every one should experience this place at least once.  It is absolutely beautiful and gives meaning to the phrase You Only Live Once.  (YOLO)

Here we are at the top of some tall rock getting ready to repel back down.  for some reason repelling terrifies me more than the actual rock climbing. but all of it requires trust in a single rope that is supposed to keep you falling eighty feet to your death!

 So more than once, on this crazy adventure, I found myself strapped to some rock, fifty feet up, freaking out.  Its a long way down, but one of the guys in attempt to give me courage turned and said to me… “YOLO.”  “I have no Idea what that means,” I replied.  He said, “it means You Only Live Once.”  I said… “I know! That’s why I’m freaking out!”  Even though I kind of turned that around on him, he’s right.  You only live once.  So get out there and experience something worth experiencing.  after you get over your initial fear you find yourself above it all and can enjoy the view!

And even though the journey up can be scary, it can also be a lot of fun!  see….

by the end of the Journey you may look like this.  Just means you didn’t hold back.  After all… you only live once.