2016 Running Recap

The final day of December is here!  I am in Detroit with Chris and his family, and we are headed out for a 4 mile run to end 2016.  With today’s 4 mile run, my total miles for December will be 74 miles, and my total for 2016 will be 1025 miles, surpassing my goal (!!!) of running 1000 miles in 2016!  You can catch up on every month of 2016 here:  January, FebruaryMarch, AprilMay, June, JulyAugustSeptemberOctober, and November.

I ran a total of 15 races in 2016, including my very first duathlon, and I ran 5 half marathons too, with a smattering of other race distances.  I had a rocky start to the year with lots of knee pain and after seeing a couple doctors, and running fewer miles in January and February, I was very happy overall with how my running went this year.  I have wanted to reach 1000+ miles, and I’m so glad I was able to reach my goal this year!

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I have some of my favorite photos from this year of running to share and look back on.

Top left: Amy and I running on New Years Day, kicking off the year with a run! Top right: The Kickoff 5k, my first race of 2016.  Bottom left: Running a virtual race for Rett Syndrome, with Momma.  Bottom right: One of many cycle classes I took trying to rehab my knee. I really enjoyed cycling and look forward to continuing it as a fun cross training exercise.

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Top Left: Running with my best girl, Shay. Shay passed away earlier this year, and I always remember our runs fondly, she was truly the best running partner.  Top right: Hays running with Mom in the early summer months, warm and windy.  Bottom Left: 5k in Hays with Michelle and Amy, and the fun weekend we had over the 4th of July.  Bottom Right: My first duathlon, what an experience!

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Top Left: My very first run with Chris, at the start of our relationship this summer.  Top Right: My 2nd 5k (Glow Run) of the day, after running the Diva Dash earlier that morning.  Bottom Left: Running with Mom and Kristen in Milwaukee after Kristen’s Ironman.  Bottom Right: Long run in Hays with Chris and Mom, after bringing Chris home to meet my family.

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Top Left: The KC Half Marathon, Chris’ first half marathon and the third time I’ve done the KC Half.  Top Right: The Longview Half Marathon, my last half marathon of 2016, with the ladies from KC Running Co.  Bottom Left: Running with the fam, home for Thanksgiving.  Bottom Right: Treadmill long runs with Chris by my side.

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I have several goals for 2017 that I’m mulling over, and will write a post sometime this week or next; until then, for 2017, I have a quote that I recently saw and it really hit home with me.  I will be keeping this quote in my mind as 2017 develops and try to do this with each of my runs and in my life: “Run and become. Become and run. Run to succeed in the outer world. Become to proceed in the inner world.” -Sri Chinmoy

Goodbye 2016.  2017, be ready!

The January Run-Down

It’s been another month, so it’s time for a run-down of how things went in January 2016!

I set a goal to run 1100 miles in 2016, and in January, I ran 50 miles.  Under normal circumstances, I would be disappointed with my January mileage, but considering I was under doctors orders to not run for 2 weeks after I received a cortisone shot for a likely torn meniscus, I’m happy I reached about half of what I intended for January.

To reach 1100 miles this year, I will have to average about 92 miles per month.  After a 50 mile month in January, I will now have to average about 96 miles per month for the rest of the month to reach my goal.  I’m not yet at the point, with my knee, where I will definitely have to change my goal… I see the doctor tomorrow, and he will tell me what the MRI results are from last week, and he’ll let me know what the plan is.  If I have to have surgery, or go through some kind of therapy, or something else, then I may have to reevaluate my goals for the year, but for now, I’m sticking with 1100 miles!

January started with a run with my best, Amy, as it did last year.  We ran a couple miles on the icy, snowy trails, and called it a day.  It was a great way to start the new year, and it’s now a tradition that I hope we continue to do yearly!

Photo Jan 01, 10 44 40 AM

After my cortisone shot and orders for 2 weeks of no running, I hit up the gym and took several cycle classes during those couple weeks, subbing biking for running.  It’s definitely not the same, but I enjoyed the classes, and worked up quite a sweat every class.  I also did cardio on the elliptical or ARC trainer, and lifted some, being sure to not stress my knee.  I was happy and hopeful, because my knee really felt better.

Photo Jan 23, 9 32 44 AM

Once my two weeks were up, I started running a bit on the treadmill, because the temperatures outside were super cold, and there was ice/snow on most of the sidewalks and trails.  Unfortunately, once I started running, the knee pain came back.  It felt just the same as it felt before the shot.  I was pretty bummed, but I kept running, and kept going to a cycle class each week or so.

Photo Jan 17, 12 31 34 PM

Because the pain came back, I moved up my follow up appointment, and the doctor wanted me to schedule an MRI, to really se what’s going on inside.  I had the MRI done last week, and will see the doctor tomorrow to find out what my future holds.  Here’s a screenshot of one image of my MRI.  Can you tell what’s going on? Me either.

Photo Jan 28, 8 37 52 AM

Once the sidewalks and trails cleared up, and the weather got a little bit warmer, I was super happy to get back to the group runs! I ran with the KC Running Co. Groupies 4 times in January, all in the last week and a half!  I ran on the treadmill a record 5 times in January; my longest treadmill run was 5 miles.  (Click here for tips for treadmill running)

Photo Jan 28, 8 38 53 PM

My longest run in January, and actually my longest run since October(!!) was yesterday, on Jan. 30, when I ran 7 miles, with Amy, on the paved trails by Indian Creek.  It was a hard run, and my knee kind of hates me ever since, but the day was gorgeous, there were rabbits and squirrels out and about, kids and families were at the parks, and the day was sunny and bright.  The downside – the horrible decaying composting smell by by the river in a few places.  It was hard to breathe that in deeply!

Photo Jan 30, 12 18 32 PM

January Run-Down:
Running: 14 runs totaling 50 miles
Cycling: 7 cycle classes totaling 7.5 hours of cycling, 97 miles.
Longest run: 7 miles, Jan. 30.
Races: none.

2015 Running Roundup

December is over today.  This YEAR is over today.  This is hard to believe.  Time to recap December, and the whole year, in running!  You can catch up on the rest of 2015 here: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, and November.  I set out in 2015 with a few goals related to running.  The first goal, that was updated in May, was to run 950 miles in 2015.  With tonight’s run, I will have 71 miles for December, and I will surpass my goal for 950 miles and end with 965 miles for 2015!

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My other running goals included PRing my 5k and 10k times, with under 30 minutes for the 5k, and under 62 minutes for the 10k, and running a half marathon with minimal walking.  I reached my 5k goal, and ran a PR of 29:29 at the Wild West 5k.  I missed my 10k goal by 1 minute, and ran 1:03:00 at the Plaza 10k, but I did finish the race hand in hand with my best friend Amy, which was a perfect way to PR the 10k!  During the KC Half Marathon, I ran over 10 miles before walking, and my body felt great, but I was dizzy, so I had to walk.  I ended up PRing my half marathon time by over 10 minutes, and only walked a little bit during mile 11.  I was very happy with all three of these races, and many other races (and PRs) in 2015 as well.

Overall, I’m extremely pleased at how my 2015 running year went.  I gained a lot of endurance, speed, and confidence in my running.  Though I had some setbacks with knee and hamstring pain, I am stronger, mentally and physically, than I’ve ever been going into 2016!

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I saw a fun little year end running questionnaire on a friends blog, and thought it would be a fun and different way to recap the year in running! I’d love for you to share your answers in the comments!

Best 2015 race experience – KC Half Marathon – I love this race, and I had a great race, a huge PR, and during the race, I decided to tackle the full marathon distance in 2016!

Best 2015 run – I had so many “best” runs… runs with Mom and Shay in Hays, runs with the Groupies, runs with my best friend Amy, runs in Milwaukee with my sister… so many memorable runs.  Some runs were great because the run was great, some were great because of the company  – one thing I know for sure, none of the runs in 2015 were regretted!

Best new piece of running gear in 2015 – Hoka Clifton shoes! I tried out Hokas about halfway through 2015, and haven’t looked back! I wear my Hokas almost exclusively, and I wear my Altras here and there also.

Best running advice you’ve received in 2015 – “I can do hard things.”

Most inspirational runner in 2015 – My sister, Kristen. She’s so strong and always pushes me to go harder, longer, faster, and stronger than I ever thought.  She runs for her cousin Martilee, who has Rett Syndrome, and is raising awareness and money to help fight Rett Syndrome.  She has focus, positivity, and consistency that I strive for every day.

Favorite race picture of 2015 – This picture was taken at the Plaza 10k, about a half mile after I caught up to Amy, with about 2.5 miles left in the race.  I stayed right behind her, and about .15 from the finish line, I popped up beside her and we ran in together, and crossed the finish line hand in hand!

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Photo courtesy KC Running Co.

Race experience from 2015 you would repeat in a heartbeat – Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas 5k – HUGE fun party from start to finish!  The racecation was lots of fun, but unfortunately the half marathon weather was awful! The 5k though, definitely a fantastic experience!

Sum up 2015 in a couple of words – More than expected!

Here’s to a great 2016!