Thursday, January 31, 2013

I'm a Runner XXII

In case you didn't know, the I'm a Runner series is inspired by a series published in Runners World magazine.  I use the "interviews" and adapt my answers to formulate my own sort of interview.  I depend on the series being published every month.  It's one of my favorite posts to write and it's also get more reads than an average post.  Point is, I enjoy writing them and I think you enjoy reading them.

So imagine my disappointment when I opened my Runners World this month only to find no I'm a Runner series on the last page.  Instead, Runners World paused to look back at the 100-plus profiles they've run over the last 9 years.

What was I to do?  I realized I've written 21 "I'm a Runner" posts and I too am going to pause and look back at MY favorite I'm a runner moments. You're delighted.  I can tell.

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My job as a mom is the most rewarding job I have ever had.  It requires a lot of hard work and patience, but the rewards you get are 10 fold what you put in. 

When I run I'm not really sure what I'm doing besides just putting one foot in front of the other.  When people talk about stride length and foot strike my eyes go crossed.  It's hard enough for me to make my body move forward without worrying about perfecting it all. 

I don't know how people run 26.2 miles in less time than it takes me to run 13.1.  Actually anything less than a 10:00 pace impresses me.  Actually just running 26.2 miles impresses me, but you get my drift.  I just don't understand how some people get their body to comprehend that they are supposed to run FAST for 26.2 miles.  My body only knows trudge along. 

Having my last baby was a life changing event (as each child is), but it was knowing that I was finally finished having kids that inspired me to reclaim my body and get fit.  I'd love to get pregnant again (not going to happen) and see how being active during pregnancy changes things. 

When I run in the morning (which is most always) I feel refreshed and ready to tackle the day.  There's nothing like having a workout behind you at 7 am. 

Racing makes me stay focused.  It causes me to really evaluate what I am able to do and not settle.  If I register for a race (and plan to race) then I make sure I do the work to give it my best effort.  Granted I don't race every race and that's ok too because there's just something about the race atmosphere that invigorates me. 

I like putting, my Chapstick in my Spibelt or water belt.  I've master the one hand lid removal, application and recapping process.  It's probably the only talent I possess.  All while running mind you.  Nothing comes between me and my Chapstick. 

Health is my greatest motivator for running and working out.  Yes, I admit that it all started because I wanted to lose weight, but running has become something I do to keep my healthy mentally and physically and most likely I haven't lost many L-Bs due to running. In fact, most marathoners GAIN weight durning training.  Go figure.  

Running changes pretty much everything.  I'm not the same person I was before I became a runner.  I know that might sound ridiculous, but it's true.  My outlook on a lot of things have changed including the way I view my body.  I'm still a work in progress, however. 

The best part of running my first marathon was the sense of accomplishment.  There is nothing like your first.  You go in not knowing if you can do it, and come out realizing you can do it... and ANYTHING else you ever dream of doing.

How you approach a run usually determines the outcome.  If I think I can, I can.  If I think I can't, then well I probably still can, but it's nowhere near as fun.  

The perfect run is when you think you're running slow and you 're afraid to look down at your Garmin to find out your pace.  You avoid looking, speeding up because you feel so slow.  Finally you look down and you realize you've been holding a MUCH FASTER pace than you expected.  (If  you're a runner, you have to know what I'm talking about). 

Normally when I'm running a long distance I can't think about the finish line.  I'm only thinking about the two steps in front of me.  If I get wrapped up thinking about what's left I'm too preoccupied and not focusing on here and now.  It's better, for me, to just focus on what is in my control-- right here, right now! 

There have been MANY and I mean many days that I wake up and say I don't want to work out today, but 99% of the time I just tell myself that is not an option.  I'll take a rest day if I need it or if I have an obligation to uphold, but I don't generally skip workouts just because I didn't feel like doing anything that day.  If that were the case, I'd be curled up on the couch watching Ellen most mornings.  

People always ask how I find the time to be a mom AND train for a marathon.  The truth is, it’s not easy and many days I’m tired and I feel guilty because I’m not able to put as much effort into being a mom.  However, at the end of the day my kids are happy and honestly nowhere near neglected.  Having a little bit of guilt is ok because when I do find my energy the guilt motivates me to “make up” for lost time.  So, it all balances out. 

Running opened up the door to so many great friendships in my life.  Some of my best friends, in fact most of them, are runners and I cherish all the miles we’ve logged together. 

You have to be willing to make some sacrifices if you’re going to train for a marathon.   Well, maybe sacrifices isn’t the right word.  I’d say you have to know that not EVERYTHING in your life is going to get done and not everyone is going to have as much time with you as they would like, but training does have to be a priority.  Maybe not #1 (my kids are #1), but definitely no lower than #3. 

I don’t run every day of the week.  I also enjoy cycling, spinning, swimming and strength training.  I never thought I’d be that person who enjoys working out.  What can I say?  Endorphins make you happy. 

Running is not a 4 letter word, although sometimes I think it should be.  Ha! 

Interested in reading more from this series?  Check them out below:

I'm a Runner 


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