Archive for the Races Category

Excuse the Dead

Posted in Races, Uncategorized with tags , , , on October 21, 2014 by activerunner

I’ve been sick for a month.  It’s awful.  I can’t breath, I’m congested, and I have a hacking cough that will not go away.  I haven’t felt like doing anything, especially running.  Yet, I signed up for a little Halloween 5k  more than a month ago.  The Night of the Running Dead! I ran this a few years ago as a human and won a hundred bucks.  This year I planned to win as a zombie.  But being sick, I had to make a decision whether I wanted to run or not.  Since I paid for it, I didn’t intend to waste my money.  But because I was sick I decided not to train for it at all.  After all it’s just a 5k right?  I had an excuse, I didn’t feel well…  And the dead, they don’t run fast.

In PE I have many students who make up excuses about why they can’t run.  They’re sick, they stubbed their toe, their finger hurts… Seriously.  They decide not to try.  After all it’s just PE Right?  PE isn’t seen as such a huge deal these days, but those excuses from students are not only exaggerated, but also hold them back from so many opportunities.  They miss out on accomplishment.  On improvement, hard work, and success. Not to mention a good grade.  But most of all, they miss out on performing to their potential.

I didn’t train for my race and in consequence I didn’t perform well.  I was disappointed in myself.  Yes, It was a for fun Zombie race, not a huge deal.  And, I felt I did relatively well considering my illness, but that is just a cop out, an excuse.   “I did pretty well considering I didn’t train at all!”  What does that even mean?  What? You would have done better had training taken place?  Well no kidding!  Anyone can say that.  But now all you have is the feeling of falling short, of not going where you could have, had you tried.  Excuses keep you from seeing results, they keep you from trying and that’s no way to run. That’s no way to live!  And if you are excusing yourself from living at your full potential, you aren’t living.  And the dead, they don’t go anywhere.

IMG_0976

Fun Run! Although I wish I would have trained. I can’t just run for fun… I don’t know why, I just can’t. I wanna wiiiiin!

Run for a Cause

Posted in Races, Training with tags , on April 24, 2013 by activerunner

Why do you run?  I run for me.  I run to improve my fitness and health.  I run to look good.  I run to relieve stress and boredom.   I run to feel accomplished.  I run so I can eat dessert.  I run for me.  Just me, and nobody else!   It’s time that changed.  Compare running to life, and you’ll find a lot of similarities.   Lately, charity has been a lot on my mind.  If your whole world revolves around yourself, you aren’t living, and I can guarantee you aren’t happy.  However, it seems when you do things for others you are actually doing a lot more for yourself.   Kind of Ironic that the best thing for you is doing for others.  “There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”

I’m not great at giving of myself.  There is a lot of room for improvement in this area.  I’m not good at speaking comforting words to strangers, or striking up friendly conversations with people I don’t know.  I’m not good at volunteering or putting myself in uncomfortable situations.  But don’t let what you can’t do interfere with what you can.  Running is something I can do.   I’m  good at putting in miles everyday.  But, simply being good isn’t useful to anyone. 

 “Being good is commendable, but only when it is combined with doing good is it useful.”  ~Author Unknown

nikegroupgoals

I had never thought to use running as a tool to make a difference.  I now see I can use it to do just that.  There are a lot of charity runing/walking events out there, so sign up.  That way, you are running for a purpose, one that exceeds the perameters of self improvement.  There is also an App I have recently discovered called Charity Miles.  This App is awesome!  I’m excited to use it.   All you do is pick a charity listed on the app and go, donating all your miles to that specific charity.  Runners and walkers can earn 25 cents per mile, bikers earn 10 cents per mile.  The app will track the mileage for you.  You then share your run on facebook or twitter to help that charity receive donations.  They want you to do this for awareness purposes, and to inspire others to do the same. 

“Nobody walks for charity in secret. It’s something you do to make a statement and to raise awareness.  When you’re done, we hope you will share on Facebook and Twitter. That has a very valuable market value.”Charity Miles

You can do anything to make a difference, it doesn’t have to be running.  The key is to make a statement.  Find something you can do, something you are good at, and use it for good.  There is no point in keeping it all for yourself.    Running is something I do anyway, but now I run for a cause.  Why do you run?

Summer List

Posted in Camping/hiking, Off on a Tangent, Races, Shoes with tags , on April 14, 2013 by activerunner

Summer is almost here!  finally.  Did winter seem long or was that just me?  My motivation slowly dies in the winter, along with everything else.  I hate not seeing the sun and I hate the cold!  This Winter has been a hard one and I’m not just talking about the intense weather conditions.  So because the snow has finally melted, I can’t help but to look forward to the joys of summer.  And now that I have a career that does not require me to work during the summer months, while still getting paid, I can enjoy the season so much more fully.   Don’t be too jealous.  Summer vacation for teachers is much deserved, trust me.  But how am I going to get the most out of my now free, empty, workless months?

Well I have a few ideas.

I’m turning 26 this summer… and I really don’t have much to show for it.  Don’t get me wrong I have a great life, career, family, and friends, but I haven’t experienced life outside my little bubble.  I’ve been so stuck in routine my whole life.  This summer I want things to be different.  It’s time to ditch routine.  I want to go places I’ve never been, do things I’ve never done, and why not? I have the whole summer.  Sad thing is I haven’t gone anywhere.  I’ve lived in Utah my whole life and haven’t even seen what it has to offer.  That said, I plan to do just that, explore Utah.  I want to see the Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, and Arches national park.  I want to hike different trails and see the wonders they have to offer.

life is a race

I want to be involved in more races competitively.  I’m done with the “fun runs” and obstacle courses that aren’t timed. I want to race! 5k’s are my specialty and I would love to see where I fit in against some real competition.  I also plan to run a half marathon this summer, and I plan to place.  That is going to take some serious training, but I just bought the shoes for it, so I’m all set!

IMG_1954

I also plan on traveling outside of Utah, I think its about time.  There are so many places I haven’t been, so I’m not really sure where to start.  The plan is to start with Florida, visit the beach, run in the sand, and I’m really excited to go to Harry Potter World… does that make me a nerd?  There are many other places I’d like to travel, however, I am not made of money.  but Hey, I have every summer from now to the end of my career!  Thats plenty of time to see new and exciting places.  okay, If I were you I’d a tab bit jealous…

I just don’t want this summer to be a waste, spent in days of boredom.  When I first started my career, I kind of thought everything else would just fall into place.   I see now that nothing falls into place, you’ve got to put it there.  It’s time I start putting the pieces together,  get a new routine.  My summer may be free and workless but it certainly isn’t going to be empty.

Endurance

Posted in Races with tags , , on January 19, 2013 by activerunner

According to Webster’s Dictionary, to Endure means to remain firm under suffering or misfortune without yielding.  You must develop that quality if you want to become a successful distance runner.  But endurance does not just pertain to running.  You must have endurance through out life.   This gift isn’t something you are just born with.  One thing I’ve learned from running is that Endurance is built gradually, you’ve just got to keep running.

Most people can’t just wake up one day and decide to run a marathon.  At least I don’t know of any.  It takes months of training, especially if you want to do well.  To take on a long distance race, you need rigorous training.  Sometimes you’ve got to suffer in order to get better.  If it’s easy, there is no improvement.  But after a few weeks of difficult training, the next few weeks become easier and easier.  And when that happens, you know you are improving.  But the suffering never ends.  If you continue running, you will continue to face challenges; hills, injuries, set backs, etc.  But you’ll continue to improve as long as you remain firm.

Life is the longest distance race we’ll ever have to endure.  It takes years and years to find success and before that happens we have to go through many trials, misfortunes, and failures.  But moments of clarity come at certain points in the race and you remember what you are running for.  Thats why its important you run for something worth while.  We may start down one path only to turn around and start another.  We may choose paths that lead to dead ends, but we must keep running.  The only way to build endurance is to keep going, You’ll get there slowly but surely.  Life is after all an endurance race.

Sense of Pride

Posted in Races with tags , , , on September 8, 2012 by activerunner

So we had our second meet for cross country this passed wednesday and I was shocked by what I saw.  The girls JV race was first, and that is what all four of our girls run.  We have four girls, twenty one boys… good odds for the girls I guess.  Anyway, while watching the girls race I saw more than one girl from our team as well as from others stop in the middle of the race and start walking!!  Am I the only one that finds this appalling? This was the city/county meet!  We are not at a swimming pool.  Run, Don’t walk!!  Where is their sense of pride?

I don’t know about other people but for me walking in a timed race is not an option.  This is a race and it is only three miles!  I mean official practices have been ongoing for two weeks now.  What is the point of all that running in practice if you have nothing to show for it at the race?  I’m sorry if i sound harsh, but cross country runners should be able to run the entire three miles without stopping.  If they can’t they are obviously walking and slacking off in practice.  This definitely gives meaning to the words,”You play how you practice.”  Or in this case, “you walk how you don’t run….”  It made sense in my head.  I don’t know why anyone would want to run cross-country if they were just planning to walk during a meet.

The real shocker was not that girls were walking in the middle of the race, but that they would walk the finsihing stretch of the race! They were walking the last hundred!  The finish line is so close, it’s within sight, and not to mention where all the fans are sitting.  (and when I say fans I mean the 5 parents in the stands)  That is just embarrassing.  Are you that out of shape that you can’t run accross the finsih line?  Come on girls you are giving us a bad name.  I hate it when guys think they can say things like, “you run like a girl.”  But now I see why they feel they can say it.  Now, I know not all girls are this way.  There were girls who ran in this meet in under twenty minutes, which is faster than a lot of the guys times, but still I hardly ever see the guys walking in a race.  I guess you could say guys are naturally more prideful than us girls.  🙂

I blame it on a lot of things.  First of all a lot of kids today are out of shape and lazy and this includes the boys.  I can see a huge difference in the athletic ability of kids from when I was in high school to now, and high school was not that long ago for me.  They just don’t want to put the work in, and cross country requires a lot of hard work and I mean a lot.  Second, they don’t have a competitive drive.  I find comparing the boys races to the girls quit funny.  The boys have a lot more of a competitive edge.  There is always more than one elbow thrown in a boys long distance race.  I see boys cutting each other off, tripping one another,  and every once in a while a fight will break out in the middle of the course.  The girls, however, run a completely different kind of race.  They cheer for the people passing them up.   “Here, go ahead and pass me…no you pass me…no you!”  Now if someone passes you in a race, sure encourage them.  Thats great.  But are you going to let someone pass you with out a fight?  Not that kind of fight boys.  Obviously throwing elbows is not a good thing, but you should run to keep your standing.  You should run to win.  

Third, they have no sense of pride, no sense of accomplishment.  They don’t want it and I can see it in their eyes.  The race is to test your limits, to test your strength.  It’s supposed to be hard!  Don’t you want to show your team, your coach, your fans, and most importantly yourself what you can do?  Don’t you want to run a personal best?  If the answer is no, then I don’t know how you find motivation to run in the first place.  If the answer is yes, then it should be more than a walking effort.  Now I had a lot of the same characteristics of these girls in high school.  I didn’t like the hard work.  I was lazy, but I did have an extremely large competitive drive, still do.  When running a meet I wanted to pass people and I wanted to beat the one girl on Layton High’s team that was faster than me.  She’d beat me In every meet up to our last invite, which i finally passed her up.  That was my fastest race as well as my last.  After that I quit.  I honestly wish I was more like I am now, then.  But I can say, however, that I never walked in a race.  I had way too much pride for that.

Foam Fest

Posted in Races with tags , , , on August 9, 2012 by activerunner

I ran the Foam Fest on Saturday.  I love these races.  The Foam Fest, Color Me Rad, And Dirty Dash provide a good break from plain old running in the street trying to put your daily miles in.  This is the Foam Fest!  These races are really just for fun.  I don’t even know if they time you or not.  I do know that they give out good quality t-shirts that fit better than any other race I’ve competed in and that is including the Ragnar.  My Ragnar t shirt is short and boxy… very unflattering and you’d think they would be better quality considering the race cost 120 bucks.  These Races are always well organized, put together and not to mention a heck of a lot cheaper, although they can get pricey if you don’t sign up early.

This run we dressed up like GI Joes… Our Team name… Sloppy GI Joes.  I thought it was clever.  there wasn’t as much mud as I thought there was going to be so we didn’t get as sloppy as I thought we would.

Before

After

But we look good in any condition… even when covered in foam.  Just so you know the foam did not taste very good, nor were you allowed to breathe it in.  We were told to hold our breath while going through it, which proved to be very difficult because the foam tends to get all up in your business including  your eyeballs, nose, and mouth.  I couldn’t see anything and had trouble wiping it away with hands also covered in foam.  I enjoyed this race and am getting excited for ones in the future.  One of these days I’ll sign up for a tough mudder or something a little more competitive.

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!