Enjoy the good moments in your life

Life is good for me right now. I can’t remember a time when I was happier. My life is full. I think it’s important to enjoy these moments in life. Because there have been times where I have felt true despair and grief. Now I am so grateful to feel such effortless happiness.

I am training for my first half-marathon. I am at the point where I can run a 10k without stopping. Each week until my half-marathon race (June), I am going to increase my mileage by 10%. I have also increased my running to 4 days a week. 3 days I pull back and run anywhere from 3 to 5 miles each day. The last day of the week, I run my long run with my 10% increase. It has been working out quite well. My pain is decreasing and so is my average heart rate. My average pace is slowly increasing; however, speed is not my main concern. I feel the best I have ever felt. Physically and mentally. Why hadn’t I found running years ago?

I need to incorporate more cross training and strength training. UGH!! Why is this so difficult for me? I DO NOT EVER want to do anything besides running. Not to mention that I have very little to no free time. I really need to force myself to. Even if it’s a bike ride and yoga once a week. It would make a world of difference.

Tomorrow my love and I are going for our normal long run in a new location. I will post pictures on IG. Sooooo looking forward to it! Happy weekend!

Running is a constant journey

Running is a journey. Every day it feels like I learn something new. At times, it’s also an emotional rollercoaster.  Some days I feel fantastic and run 4.5 miles with ease and other days I struggle through the first mile. I notice that the healthier I live my life, the easier it is to run. My body feels less heavy and filled with more endurance.

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I am training for my first 8k in a few weeks and am excited about it! Having a race on the horizon keeps my training on point. After that, at the end of March, I am doing my first 10k. I want to keep going and going. September I have a Ragnar planned and I want to within the next few months do my first half-marathon. However, I have to keep telling myself, one day at a time. I have an obsessive, OCD planning side to my personality. My brain never stops.

When is the best time to run? Morning, afternoon, or evenings? I go back and forth. I enjoy a good morning run because the weather is cooler and it gives me energy throughout the day. It’s hard to find the motivation though. Sleep for another hour or get up and go run? Quite often, sleep wins. Today I went for a morning run since I had to work late last night. It was serene and peaceful. I feel fantastic right now. I also love evening runs. After a day of being stressed out from work, I crave that running release. Although it can be hard to find the time after a busy day. Afternoon runs are great but the weather can be hotter and since I work, it only works for me on the weekends.

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Where is the best place to run? The gym or outdoors? I like running at the gym because I have strength training and stretching options available. I like running outdoors because it’s just more fun. I do both. However, if I were to choose my favorite, it would be outdoors.

Finding the time to run can be difficult as well. I work a full-time job, volunteer part-time for another, take classes at the local college, and try to fit in a social life. It can be hard to manage. Nevertheless, that’s life, right? Above everything, it’s important to find the time for yourself. Be good to your body. Running is beneficial in so many ways. It’s good for your soul.

All I know is one thing, I will never stop running. The natural high received is better than anything I have ever experienced. I can’t wait to see my progress. I am curious to see where I will be a year from now. Maybe running marathons? We shall see.

 

ONE DAY AT A TIME

It’s amazing how depressing it is to have an injury. It has taken me quite some time to get back to my normal training schedule. There were days when I felt like I would never get back to where I was. I just kept telling myself, one day at a time. I slowly started running a half mile, full mile, and then two miles. I am at the point now where I am running a 5k every other day. My goal is to be able to run a full 8k by the end of February for an upcoming race. I feel like that’s a realistic goal. With slow training, cross training, and stretching/yoga, I should reach that goal with no further acquired injuries.

I have surprisingly become addicted to treadmill running. I think it’s because of the lesser impact on my body. However, I really do miss the scenery. It’s just more convenient to run at the gym. I have cross training and a stretching room available for immediate use after my run. This weekend I am going to run somewhere beautiful. Maybe somewhere new. I am very much so looking forward to it. Living in the Tampa Bay area provides the perfect backdrop for a run. The ocean is so calming and yet magnificent. I don’t think I could ever become jaded enough to not appreciate the beauty of where I live. Although truth be told, I am ready to live and run in the mountains!  I want actual seasons!

Since starting this blog, I have actually inspired quite a few people to run. This makes me happy. This is the main reason for creating this site. I want others to find the peace I have found from running. I want others to love their body and within doing so love themselves. Surround yourself with people who are like-minded and uplift rather than drag you down. You only have one life. Live it to the fullest. RUN! Trust me, once you get past the initial endurance building, you will be addicted! If you are looking for an accountability partner, reach out to me. Having someone who supports and understands your process makes it a whole lot more fun of a journey.

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My first injury

Running is absolutely addicting! I was getting to the point where I was running almost every day. I couldn’t get enough. The natural high I receive during and after a run is indescribable. Admittedly, I wasn’t doing any cross training or stretching. Big mistake. I was running one evening after work a couple of weeks ago and hurt my groin muscle. I was barely able to get back to my car. I gave myself a week or so off to allow my body some rest and to heal. Slowly, I have been running again. I feel like I am finally back to my old self! I have been forcing myself to run every other day only. In between, I am doing Zumba and bike riding. I also do a 30-minute runner’s yoga YouTube video after every run. I really have noticed a difference. Today I ran 2 miles with no pain!!

At this point, my biggest challenge is weight lifting. I have no desire to lift weights. I find it to be super boring and quite honestly intimidating. Until I decide on a gym to join, I will utilize Yoga for strength training. There is so much to learn about running and fitness in general. I am so looking forward to experiencing my running journey. It’s hard to believe that I used to hate it!

Running heals the mind

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I have struggled with anxiety my entire life. It’s something that I have learned to live with. I notice such a drastic improvement when I live a healthy lifestyle. The anxiety nearly disappears. I am a firm believer that how you treat your body directly impacts your mind. Running has freed me from this life-altering restraint. I love to put on good music and run next to the bay. All of the stress from the day melts away. For that brief amount of time, you don’t think about anything. I crave that momentary release.

 

Random thought of self-reflection

I change my mind a lot and I am stubborn. My amazing mother would tell you, I also like to learn everything the hard way. Side note: this is why I don’t have any tattoos and should keep it that way. Some days I want to run 365 days straight. Then some days I want to just focus on increasing my distance. Some days increased speed is more my goal. UGH. Why can’t I just focus on one thing? Running is such a process. It’s hard! But, the feeling I receive when I am finished is absolutely priceless! It’s a high I have never experienced! So, one thing I have learned is to take it day by day. Just always keep running! Keep seeking the high!

Inspiration To Run

Running hasn’t always been a passion of mine. In fact, I have only been running since August 2017. I used to hate it. I used to drive by people running and think to myself, “Wow that looks miserable!” I simply never thought I would run and accepted the fact that it just wasn’t for me. I was wrong.

So, how did I dive into the world of running? Edmund inspired me to run. He is an avid runner and is a Race Director for NeoEndurance, which is a company that organizes races. His passion and drive for running were inspirational. I wanted to feel the pleasure he received from it and I was immediately hooked! Before running, I feel that I lived an active and healthy lifestyle. I thought I was in good shape until running came into my life. It was an incredibly slow process for me to build my endurance. I honestly didn’t think it would ever happen and I was quite often very frustrated. I kept going and I never gave up. Slowly my endurance and distance increased. Now I can run 3.5 miles without stopping. For experienced runners, that’s barely a workout. For me, it feels like I ran an ultramarathon!

My current goals with running are unclear. Do I want to get to the point of running marathons like Edmund? His endurance is downright impressive and his body is more like a machine than human. Alternatively, am I more comfortable with running for exercise and a natural stress reliever, while keeping my distance around 5 to 6 miles max? I am attracted to the competitive feel of races and pushing myself. However, I am just as equally attracted to keeping running as a lifestyle, on my terms. I feel like I will have a clear answer with time. I have no doubt that this journey will be very self-reflective.

What has recently become intriguing to me are running streaks. In order to have successfully completed a running streak, you must run at least 1 mile every day. I follow an Instagram account of a runner who is near the end of doing a 365-day running streak. I love watching his journey. He has inspired me to attempt doing one of my own. Maybe this will be the key to cementing my love for running while slowly continuing to building my endurance.

I created this blog to document my running journey. I am starting out with a running streak goal of 30 days as of the new year. My ultimate goal is to do a full year, but I want to start out a little more realistically to gauge how my body feels. I also hope to inspire people to run. It has changed my life in so many ways. My health, sanity, stress, and overall well-being have drastically improved. I believe if more people considered running as a journey, rather than instantaneous, then running would be more prolific. Start slow and don’t give up!20171115_154656