I've always been very intimidated by idea of running non-stop. I spent over twenty years walking and hiking long distances, taking step aerobics, doing lots of cardio machines and classes, but never had enough confidence to really try to tackle running.
I kept watching my run buddy, Kasey (for a year) as she was plugging along at her running journey and she didn't die.
|See smiling, not dying|
I also began to notice people running as I was out and about and they were certainly not dropping over, so I finally got up my nerve to give running a shot.
I did hurt, but it didn't kill me so at 46 years old I caught the running bug. I was convinced after my first few runs three or four miles would probably be it for me. I often kick myself now that I didn't start running in my 30's. Why did I wait until after 45...
January through March I had several runs where my strategy was always the same, run as far as I could make it, then walk it out. My running pace: 11:00-12:00 minutes a mile. I kept working on making the shorter runs faster, but it was a challenge every step. I remember my calves hurting so bad it would take almost 3 miles to loosen them up. I was stretching a lot but still getting very sore through my my first few months of running.
I went through a series of different apps and looking back through my stats I forgot how much I was still power walking. My version of power walking was short bursts of running and brisk walking so I would average anywhere from a 13:00 to 14:00 minute mile. I did a lot of two hour walks on the weekends. I loved putting on my camelbak and heading to the trails. I continued my power walking until April when I finally made the transition to all running. I also purchased my Garmin in April and I love it, having all my stats in one place is awesome.
April I ran about 40 miles. I thought I was a bad **s.
May I ran 66 miles and that's the month my hip pain started in full force. The pain in my left hip kept changing from a burning sensation to sharp pains, to non-stop throbbing, then back to sharp pains depending on my weight distribution. I had it X-rayed and they said it wasn't a stress fracture. I still wonder to this day what was going on. Bursitis, weak IT band, strained ligament, I have no idea. I went through several different steroids and did lots of hip stretches, and periods of rest trying to get past it. It was totally frustrating. I hurt all summer and in September I finally started to have long periods of time where I would be pain free. I still get a few twangs of pain at times, enough to take an anti-inflammatory, but it's not disruptive like it was over the summer. I started reading lots of running blogs during my pain experience trying to find someone who had similar issues and got hooked. I love the virtual running community.
|Before the Run Like a Girl Trail race|
My second half in October is still haunting me. It was almost 90 degrees on a course with little shade and I got as sick as could be and there were no port a potties on the course so I had to find a bush and ended up finishing in 2:36:50. So discouraging. I have been hesitant to sign up for another.
Even with all the pain and very slow summer paces I made gains and kept at it. Most of the time I try to ignore that I am 47 years old, but going through the hip pain experience scared me (and still does) so I do realize I have to respect that my body needs time to recover. I try to make the most of my workouts but not over train. Age never bothered me until the past year of so. 40 was a breeze and I really didn't feel any different until after I turned 45, but now I am starting to show visible signs of wear and tear, wrinkly (very) skin, age spots...ugh, gray hair, random aches and pains, general fatigue, etc...and it's a little hard to take some days.
I ran 834 miles this year.
October and December were my high months and I ran just a little over a 100 miles each month.
Glimpses of progress
April 7, 2012 Henrico 5K- 34:54
March 30, 2013 Henrico 5K - 29:52
April 12, 2012 Monument Ave. 10K - 1:22:41
April 13, 2013 Monument Ave. 10K - 1:01:40
March 29,2014 Monument Ave. 10K- ?
To date I have run 5 10K's in sub 60. Of course, I hope on race day this year to officially record a great time.
September 7, 2013 Farmville High Bridge Half - 2:13:03
|I ran over this bridge during my first half marathon|
|Loved this trail|
Looking at the numbers I feel very content in my accomplishments and the fact that I survived! There were oodles of moments through out the past year where I was certain I wouldn't run ever again.
I am not on a mission to be faster really (just the Monument Ave 10K), I just want my runs to feel a little easier. At times they do; I get the sensation I am just cruising and could go forever. Other days I struggle like I have never run before, maybe that will never go away.
One of my best weight loss tools this past year has been my Lose it app. I have met some of the most delightful folks, who have encouraged me through my running and weight loss trials this year and I look ♥♥ forward ♥♥ to checking in and chatting with all my virtual friends as often as possible. Tracking helped me to lose 16 lbs. over the past two years. I am only 5'2" so I don't carry extra weight well (I look like a meatball). It has been a slow battle with my thyroid issues and I've had to dip (calories) pretty low to lose a few pounds. I still have a few to go and I hope the running will eventually help me shed those.
|Tacky Light Run my last event of 2013 |
Click here to read about my drenched run
Running Over The Hill: Tacky Light Run
☼ I haven't thought about how I will get through the summer heat yet, but I do hope to survive it running even if it means more treadmill.
My hope is I will be injury free, feeling healthy and strong, and pounding the pavement (or trails) three or four days week. ツ