I am currently training for my first half marathon, The Hippie Chick, on May 11th. I was planning on running at an 8:30 minute mile pace, and wasn't even sure if that would be too easy or too hard for me, but it seemed like it should be challenging, but not painful, ya know?
Well, today I planned to run 11 miles at an 8:45 pace or so. I did that pace for 10 miles last week. I decided to do the Fern Ridge Trail. I ate more than normal before, because I was gonna be running far. I was nervous before leaving. It would be the longest solo distance I had ever run. But, get' er done, eh? So, I start running, and I'm feeling good. After a mile, I look down at my GPS running watch, and it says my pace is 8:15, and it feels easy. Huh? It felt like the watch must have been wrong, but it wasn't. I increased to an 8:00 minute pace, and it still felt pretty easy. Well, I thought, as long as it feels easy why not stay at this pace? Maybe I'll pay for it later, but right now, it doesn't feel hard, in fact, it feels great, so why not? I just kept going and enjoyed myself. It was a beautiful morning with beautiful scenery and great music, and everything was perfect. Sometimes, it feels like the planets must align for the perfect run, and today was it. So, I reveled in it. Aaaaaaah. I couldn't believe I was feeling so good, because I worked out pretty hard this week, with HIIT.
At mile 7, I started running at 7:45, and I still felt good. Mile 8-12, I ran at 7:30-7:35. What was going on? I still felt good. It wasn't that hard. I finally felt tired on the last mile. Once the watch hit 13.1, I said, "Holy SHIZBALLS!" I know, not good, but I just couldn't believe it. I averaged an 8:00 minute mile pace, for a total time under 1hr45min. Then, I said, "Holy smokes." I had NO IDEA I could do that. I was just gonna do a regular ol' long run....little did I know I would blast my half-marathon goal out of the water.
Is it weird that my friend just loaned me a book about how to qualify for Boston? I had never EVER even thought about it. I know I'm jumping the gun. So, I have been reading it, and you have to do an 8:18 pace to qualify. I could very well qualify for 2014. Then, I researched when the Boston Marathon is. It's today! What? The one day I have ever thought I could even qualify, and research it, is the day of the race? Weird!
Anyway, the run was great. I have hit a new level. As I have been training, I kinda dreaded the long runs unless I got to run with my wonderful friend or wonderful sister. Last week, I had to go alone, and I really enjoyed it. Today, I had to go alone, and I enjoyed it again. I have felt great all day. It gave me time to think about everything. I have great thoughts while running. For example, today, among many thoughts, these were the most profound
I want a quote in my house, or image, that says, "Take care of each other." I love to take care of my family. It makes me so happy. Sometimes, I lose sight of that, but when I don't, there is so much harmony at home. I even had an image come to my head of how to represent that for me. What a great piece of art that would be in our home. I'll attempt it, but I may have to commission it.
I thought about how I want to spend more quality time with my children, and how I couod get basic chores done faster, so I'm not so stressed when I'm with them. I haven't been a great mom this week. I have been impatient...and it's because I get in "must-get-this-done" mode. Do this, this, this, and I don't want to stop when I'm getting stuff done...so then I get frustrated when they need my attention. Silly. I can find a balance. I did today actually. I bonded with Jet better than I have in a long time. We were best buds, and he was a great listener, AND I still got the kitchen clean, cooked and worked in the yard.
Since Aijahlyn's birth, I have been working on getting my pre-baby body back. It's been a lot of work, but I have learned SO MUCH about setting goals and pushing myself, and am honestly in the best shape of my whole life. Now, I have reached a point where I am happy enough with my body. It doesn't look the same as before Aijah, but it's close enough. And now, I can just focus on being healthy instead of how I look. I'm so excited. I told myself I would work my hardest until May 1st and I called it "MAY DAY." I love health and fitness anyway, so it's been fun but hard at the same time. Now, I can focus on fitness goals....triathlon? marathon? cross-fit? mountain biking? climbing mountains? who knows!!! So much I want to do.
After my first 5k (I was 23) my Dad compared me to a horse, saying I was built to run. Well, who likes being compared to a horse? No one. Luckily, I don't have big teeth, otherwise I would have been really self-conscious. But, after today, I don't mind being compared to a horse so much. He did have a good point. Love you, Dad.
Such a great day. I am so blessed and so grateful. Our Bishop told us the other night that he uses General Conference as his "New Year," where he evaluates and sets goals, like New Years resolutions because Conference refreshes us, reminds us, and strengthens us. It makes us think of how we want to change. I loved that comparison and I want to implement it. So, what will the next 6 months hold? Some things I can control, and others I can't. But the ones that I can, are going to be great.