Unbreakable Runner: CrossFit Endurance for Running

My road map for 2015:

Unbreakable Runner: CrossFit Endurance for Running.

I read this book cover-to-cover last month when I flew to Dallas for the MetroPCS Dallas Marathon.  I decided that I was going to use the training plans in it to see what it could do for my running this year.  Granted, at the time I was reading it, I hadn’t any plans to run 5 halfs and 4 fulls; but now that my plan is in place I think this book will be even MORE important to my success.

Run Happy (Natalie)

I just came back from what I consider a magnificent 10-mile run and this gem was in my inbox. Well said Natalie, today was one of those days where, despite the 34F temp, the run could only have been better if I were younger and faster.

D.I.Y. Fitness Blog

Perhaps the most inexplicable attraction of running is the enjoyment. Some people run for the social scene, others for the fashion statement, and then (insert sarcasm here) there’s the devoted cadre that runs for the associated health benefits (everybody runs for the health benefits). As much as I love the fashion statements (no sarcasm there), I’d have to say that sheer enjoyment is the root of all my reasons for running. I thought about this when one of my running friends recently said to run happyme that she didn’t think she could ever run a marathon and be as happy as I looked during the Richmond marathon. Hearing this from another runner made me reevaluate what it means to “run happy.”

Generally, my philosophy about running (and life, really) is that it is what you make it. If I were to approach running from the perspective of some grueling self-imposed torture…

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Thinking about the spot where half marathon finishers medal #6 is going to be I realized that I’ve been giving short shrift to the “Six Halfs In a Year” headline.  At the completion of the MetroPCS Dallas Half next Sunday I will have completed a major running event each month for the last five months, more of an accomplishment than I’ve been considering it to have been.

Granted, there are probably thousands of runners out there that complete an organized half marathon event every month so in they eyes of the world my accomplishment is far from earth shattering.  But for me it’s a great achievement considering where I was at the beginning of the year.

On a whim I decided to fly down to Austin to run the 20th annual 3M event (it was brutally cold here in Omaha so why not?).  I hadn’t really been training for a half, hell I don’t even think I’d actually put in any more than a handful of miles of actual “running”.  Truth be told I’d only been working on my fitness since mid-December.  I didn’t even run Austin, I “Wogged” it – a word I came up with to describe my walk/jog approach.

I had no grand expectations, I just wanted to finish in 3:00 or under.  I met my goal with a 2:51.  In a galaxy far, far away I had run the Baltimore half in 1:54, so that 2:51 kinda pissed me off even though it was what I deserved in light of my lack of training up to that point – but the gauntlet was thrown.

I came back to Omaha on a mission, not to run six half marathons in 2014, but to prove to myself that I could get back to being able to actually RUN the entire course without any walk breaks.   To motivate me on this mission I registered for the Revel Rockies inaugural, the Omaha Half, the Des Moines half, and a couple months later the Richmond half.  Dallas didn’t even enter into the equation until after I’d finished Des Moines and then realized that I couldn’t finish the year with an odd-number of finishers medals; it’s a left-brain thing.

I felt redeemed when I finished the Revel Rockies a full 23 minutes faster, and that with a pulled muscle in my right leg that manifested itself at mile 7.  My 2:16 in Omaha a month later quieted the naysayers in the back of my mind telling me that Revel was a fluke because it was all downhill.

My daughter Kelly, with whom I ran the Richmond event last month (I the half, she the full) has challenged me to PR for the year in Dallas with a 2:10.  An ambitious challenge to be sure, but considering what I’m running Dallas in support of – challenge accepted!  I already have my race day shirt packed, I’m running for a cause and so I’ll cross the finish wearing my Navy Seal Foundation shirt.

I’m just unhinged enough that I’m considering a run at 12 medals next year.  I’m already registered for Grandma’s Marathon in June, with the Ogden half slotted in May on my training calendar.  Now I’ve got myself thinking that I should run a half each month leading up to Grandma’s, then a half in each of the next five month’s and cap off the year with a full in December.  Major undertaking, but I think it’s possible.

10 Days to Dallas

I think it must be the fact that it’s so dark this early now that it takes so much to motivate me to go do these easy runs.  It isn’t like I can just slack off; I do have the MetroPCS Dallas Half Marathon coming up next Sunday.  Not only that, but the Dallas half is one of the most important halfs I’ll run this year because I’m running it for a cause.

I’m praying for good health and good weather because it would really be nice to finish 2014 with a PR for the year AND raise money for my charity.    While I haven’t even come close to reaching my goal, despite having been trying for the last two months, I’m still just as excited as ever to be doing SOMETHING for such a worthy endeavor.

I was happy to have the chance to reconnoiter the transportation from DFW to downtown last week when I was at DFW on a connection, it’s going to be stupidly easy to get from the airport to within a few blocks of the expo and packet pickup on the train – and at a cost of only $1.60!

So it’s going to be a whirlwind trip;

Whew!  Relax in the warm glow of having completed six half marathons for the year (3M, Revel Rockies, Omaha, Des Moines, Richmond, Dallas)  – daydream about planning my training for Grandma’s Marathon in June 2015, my first full since 2003.

The only thing that would cap off a spectacular year any better than it already has been is if I could just reach my $250 fund raising goal.

Garmin Connect.

Gobble Wobble

Had a lot of fun running in the Littleton, Colorado Gobble Wobble this morning.  Good sized crowd too, 1,322!  The path was pretty narrow for a large community fun event that attracted a sizable number of strollers, dogs, and walkers.  I was hoping for less than 30:00 but the 5,500 for altitude got the best of me on the final 300 yards and I just didn’t have it in me to sprint.

Just a drop in the bucket(list)

This race is on the top of my list of most scenic marathons that I want to complete.  I’m seriously considering adding this to my race schedule for 2015 and am going to have to weigh the pros/cons of whether I want to run the full or the half, considering I’m running Grandma’s Marathon in June.  I really don’t see where it would be an issue running another full 3-months later.  Yes, it will be a challenge wrt training.  But if that dude, whose name escapes me, can run a marathon every weekend for 74 weekends then I can certainly challenge myself and run two in a course of three months.  I’m only here for a finite period of time, and there are far too many extraordinarily scenic marathons that I want to run before that time is up – considering I’m a late bloomer.  Okay, I just talked myself into it……now, if only I could convince just ONE of the Richmond group to join me – now THAT would be EPIC!