Running Thoughts

Winter running is hard.  Mentally hard.  It seems harder than normal this year, and it’s not even *really* cold and snowy and icy yet.  I have a harder time adjusting to cold, dark running than I do to hot, humid running.  It really takes my body, and my mind, quite a while to get in the swing of things and have it be normal.  And if I can’t run outside, it takes my body and my mind quite a while to get used to the treadmill.  It’s not my favorite way to run, I’ll just leave it at that.

I also think I’ve been in a bit of a running funk lately.  Not necessarily so much running, but racing.  I did 16 races in 2015.  That’s a lot of races.  I PR’d my 5k, 4 miler, 8k, 10k, and half marathon times this year.  I had fun and pushed myself in my races.  I improved so much, besides racing.  I got faster, I became more confident, and I began really and truly running for me.  But towards the end of the racing “season” this year, I didn’t really want to do it anymore.  I think 16 races is too many for one year, at least for me.

I still love running, don’t get me wrong.  But running has felt difficult lately, and I’m positive that has to do with the winter coming.  The cold and the dark.  Running is a sport with no off season, and that’s one of the things I love most about it. There’s training, there’s racing, and then more training.  I love running, but I’m glad to be done with races until April-ish of 2016.

I really wanted to reach 1000 miles this year.  I don’t think, realistically, it will happen at this point  My initial goal for the year was 1100 miles.  After going through a divorce and moving this past spring, I reevaluated my goals and aimed for 950 miles for the year, but in the back of my mind, I wanted 1000.  When November was said and done, I was at 894 miles for the year, meaning I would need 106 December miles to reach 1000, or 56 miles to reach 950 miles.  My monthly totals average between 80-100, so I knew it would be a hard month to go for 106, especially with no half marathons.

Yesterday and last night, I came down with some sort of stomach bug, and it took me down and knocked me out, hard.  I planned on going to the gym last night and running about 4 miles and doing some upper body strength.  Then tonight I had planned 3-4 miles.  I didn’t run at all last night, except to the bathroom.  And today, I have so little energy, and am still fighting some queasiness.  Needless to say, without two days of running, missing about 8 miles, that goal of 106 miles this month is even harder to attain.

I’m going to reach my 950 mile goal, there’s no way I won’t reach that.  But 1000 miles, quadruple digits, that’s going to have to wait until 2016.  So much is going to happen in 2016!  It’ll be the year I complete my 10th half marathon, the year I complete my first full marathon, and the year I run 1000+ miles in one year.

I’m not giving up on myself.  Quite the contrary.  I’m thanking my body for what it’s given me this year, I’m dealing with issues that were out of my control, and I’m celebrating that I have the ability to run 80-100 miles in a month, healthfully and happily.  I’m going to end the year without stress, and I’m really excited about it.  2016, I’m coming for you.

Photo Dec 08, 7 24 32 AM

November Roundup

November has come and gone.  This year has flown by so quickly.  In case you want to catch up on my monthly roundups, you can read them here: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, and October.  I wrote a post last December with my goals for 2015; my main running goal for this year was to run 950 miles.

For November, I finished the month with 78 miles.  My year to date prior to November was 816, meaning I am heading into December with 894 miles!! My reach goal was to get to quadruple digits with my first 1000 mile year, so to get to that point, I need 106 miles in December.  To reach my initial goal of 950 miles, I need just 56 more miles in December.  I’m going to try really hard to get 106 miles in December!

In November, I had 3 races. On November 1, I ran the Cliffhanger 8k with Amy, and had a beautiful race along a gorgeous cliff-side road.  The Cliffhanger race was my first 8k, which is just a hair under 5 miles.

Photo Nov 01, 10 13 03 AM

Also in November was the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas 5k and then the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon the next night.  I traveled to Las Vegas with Mom and Kristen, and we had a great weekend together exploring and running.  We met up with Mark at both races, and represented KC Running Co!


Photo Nov 14, 7 40 34 PM

Photo Nov 15, 5 23 57 PM

I only managed to run with the KC Running Co Groupies 4 times.  Between starting a new job, traveling to Las Vegas, and traveling to Hays for Thanksgiving, there were just a lot of evenings I either couldn’t run, or ran  solo when time permitted.  My longest run, besides the Las Vegas Half Marathon, was 5 miles, which happened three different times throughout the month.

I volunteered one race in November, the RWB 5k, with Amy.  After volunteering the race, Amy and I met up with Mark at Shawnee Mission Park for a run.  It was a gorgeous day.

Photo Nov 30, 7 56 56 PM

The last week or so of November has gotten really cold and rainy and wet.  And dark too.  It’s dark so early in the evenings.  I had my first treadmill run of the fall, while in Hays for Thanksgiving.  It had rained and drizzled for a couple days, and then froze everything into a slick mess.  Mom, Kristen, and I went to HRC to run and lift.

Since coming back to KC after Thanksgiving, I’ve signed up for a gym membership at the Overland Park Athletic Club, which is partially paid for by my employer, making my monthly dues very low.  I see lots of treadmill runs in my future for this dark and cold winter to come.

Photo Nov 27, 2 15 28 PM

Looking forward to December, my biggest goal is to run at least 106 miles to get my yearly total to 1000 miles or more!!  I have one race, the Great Santa Run 5k.  Other than that, my goals are to develop a routine at the gym with some weight lifting and group classes at least a couple times a week, get to a few yoga classes, and finish the year healthy and happy!

How was your November? Any goals for December?

October Roundup

October is over! That means a recap of my month is due! You can catch up on all previous months’ recaps here: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, and September.

With 3 miles this morning, I finished out October with 103 miles, which is my second most miles in a month, ever! The highest mileage I’ve run was in March of 2014, with 119.  103 miles this month is my second most, followed by 102 miles in February 2014, and 100 miles in August of this year.  With 103 miles this month, I’m up to 816 miles for 2015, and right on track to meet my goal of 950 miles, and hopefully exceed that and reach quadruple digits, 1000 miles!! I need 184 more miles to reach 1000, which averages out to at least 92 miles for November and December.  My last 5 months have been in the 80s, 90s, or 100s, for milage, so I am confident that if I stay healthy, I can reach 1000 miles this year!!!  To reach my goal of 950 miles, I will have to run at least 67 miles each in November and December.

Photo Oct 31, 4 35 33 PM

I started off October by going to Milwaukee to visit my sister.  We ran together twice, and I was able to volunteer with her at the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon finish line, which was a huge inspiration for me to want to commit to completing my first full marathon next fall.  I also took my second ever cycle class, taught by Kristen.

Photo Oct 05, 8 42 44 AM

I had one race in October, the KC Half Marathon.  I PR’d this race by over 10 minutes, and felt more strong and confident than I’ve ever felt during a half marathon.  Running this race solidified my desire to complete a full marathon next fall, and I will do so at the same race next October.  You can read my race recap here.

Photo Oct 17, 10 57 53 AM

My longest run in October, besides the KC Half Marathon, was a 7.5 mile run in Milwaukee, with Kristen, on October 4.  I ran with KC Running Co. 8 times, including 2 really great feeling speed workouts.  I’ve been continuing to see the chiropractor about every 1-2 weeks, and I’m having marked improvement with my left IT band/hamstring and my right glute/hamstring.  We’re making progress!  I was only able to make it to 2 yoga classes in October; I need to get back to yoga once a week!

Photo Oct 24, 3 09 10 PM

Looking forward to November, I have the Cliffhanger 8k tomorrow, November 1, which will be my first 8k (4.97 miles).  Then, I’m flying to Las Vegas with Mom and Kristen to run the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas 5k and Half Marathon! I’m really looking forward to a girls trip, runcation, and VEGAS!

I’m going to try to keep my mileage steady to end the year with at least 1000 miles, and try to stay healthy and keep my ailments on the mend! Let me know how your October went, and what your goals are for November and the rest of the year!