Friday, November 27

Happy Hilly Chilly Days

My mom arrives Tuesday for a 2 week visit! The kids and I have not seen her (other than Skype) for over a year. While she is here I am looking forward to sleeping past 4:30 am. The weather has been so nice this month and has not dropped below 40 for any of my early morning runs. It has been a gift from God to have such warm weather this time of year. But, the weather has started changing and just in time for my moms visit. My run Saturday was 33 degrees! I could see my breath the whole way. The day mom arrives it is going to be 29 degrees! My mom has always been very supportive of my running so when I asked her if she would mind if I went running after sunrise, she had no problem with that. I am really excited about getting to sleep in and run later in the morning for the next couple of weeks. Not only that but while moms here we plan to transform the spare bedroom where my treadmill is. I though if the room was pleasant to be in it would make my treadmill running more endurable. It has snowed as late as April around here so I figure I will be on the treadmill at some point. Mom and I love to decorate and keep busy so it will be a fun time. She will also do Christmas with the kids so they are looking forward to getting a few gifts early. My husband leaves for Myanmar on Thurs. and will be gone for 8 days. December is looking like a very busy month. My running plan through December is hills, hills, hills! I have been experiencing mild shin pain (only in my left leg) this month but nothing that has caused me to have to skip any running days. I'm running in new shoes so I have eliminated that as the cause. I sure would like to know if anyone has a good stretch for the shin? Any advice is welcome. I probably won't do much posting this month but will keep up with you all through reading your blogs. Below is a picture of the quilt I ordered and *kind of* (I'll be using my favorite color green instead)the look mom and I will be going for in the spare room. I found a twin sleigh bed at the thrift store last week for $40! I'll post pictures when it's done.

Tuesday, November 24

Giving Thanks

1 Thessalonians 5:18 reminds us, "in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."

I am thankful for a godly husband who loves his family in both actions and words.
I am thankful that my father-in-law has turned a corner and is gaining some ground physically.
I am very thankful for the warmer than usual weather to run in.
I am thankful I have been able to run consistently with no pain for 3+ weeks.
I am thankful that my mom is coming for a visit in less than a week.
I am thankful that even though this time of year comes with many things that are stressful and disappointing I have a Rock, a steady place to plant my feet.
I am thankful that no one in my family has gotten really sick this year so far.
I am thankful for friends and blogging friends who keep my life interesting and offer encouragement.
I am thankful for so many blessings God has poured out in my life, most of all for His endless love and mercy.
I hope you all have a blessed Thanksgivings!

Monday, November 16

Where There's A Will There's A Way!

Some of you who are also friends with me on Facebook know that my husbands father was diagnosed in August with incurable cancer and has since begun serious radiation and chemotherapy treatments. With my in-laws living about 3 miles from us, this allows us to minister and help them. Last week my father-in-law ended up at the hospital suffering from side affects of his treatments as well as dehydration. Why do I bring this up? well, only to boast in the Lord of course. As you know I set about last week to begin in earnest my pre-marathon training month. November has been set aside to "see how it goes" in the pain/mileage department. But not part of my schedule was an increased number of responsibilities. My husbands father needing to be hospitalized meant that my husbands time would be stretched between home and the hospital. My husband did several overnight stays at the hospital which meant I could not run in the mornings. He also went by there after work, so time for running became very challenging. My husband who is very supportive and aware of my goals worked so hard to try and be home at some point everyday so I could get in my run. I ran several times in the evening, well after dark, and managed to run 5x's this past week. I am so thankful for a loving and supportive husband. For children who step up to the plate when grown-up responsibilities increase. For the fact my "father-in-love" is getting better. And more than anything for the grace God gives to get me through difficulties and for His intimate care that I sense each day as I run this race. I am happy to report I have run without any serious pain this past week and the marathon goal is looking more and more like a reality. My plan this week is to repeat last weeks running schedule and hopefully feel a little stronger than I did this past week on my runs.
Mon. run 4(done)
Tue. 4 (done)
Wens. 4
Thur. 4 (Hills)
Fri. off
Sat. 5

Monday, November 9

"I Think I Can, I Think I Can"

Next to the story of "The Princess and the Pea" my next favorite book as a child was "The Little Engine That Could" Who would've know how much this story would parallel my life as an adult. My life especially these past two years has been one of overcoming seemingly the impossible. If it were not for my relationship with the Lord and His Word I would not be able to reach the top of that mountain. Thank you all so much for the encouragement, advice and all around pep talk on whether or not I should make 2010 the year I see a long time dream fulfilled. First I want to answer a question asked from the last post. Yes, I have done races, many of them. The longest distance I have run is the half-marathon distance. My most common race has been the Tulsa Run a 15k. I have done up to 14 miles in training runs but it has been a looooooong time. This year my longest run has been 6 miles due to the fact I have had one pain issue after another anytime I try to extend that distance. This is one of the reasons I have been so uncertain. Thankfully it seems these issues have resolved and I can begin in earnest to work on my running. Realistically I know that if I pursue this dream I must adjust my goals and expectations. I have usually trained with the purpose of meeting a time goal or having a PR. But if I were to do this marathon I think I will just frustrate myself trying to do that. So where does this leave me? This is my plan so far. I know that the OKC Memorial Marathon sells out. It has sold out every year and this is the 10th anniversary, so I don't have a great deal of time to sit on this. In light of my current running year, my plan is to take the rest of November to see what happens when I move past the 6 mile mark. Before I can commit to this, by that I mean put down the money, I need to work on increasing my mileage this month and building up my long run distance. I feel like since I have been able to resolve the hip pain through proper stretching I can now work consistently on increasing my weekly and long run mileage. I was so blessed by your comments that I really think I CAN marathon! So here I am anxious to see how my month goes and excited for the first time in a long time to possibly be training for such a special race. I'll keep you posted!
My plan this week;

Mon. run 4 (done)

Tue. 4 (took off bc father-in-law ended up in hospital)

Wens. 4 (done)

Thur. 4 (done)

Fri. 4 (with hills,done! One more run this week to go!)

Sat. 5 (done! that last mile was sloooooow)

Thursday, November 5

To Marathon Or Not To Marathon That Is The Question...

So I have actually been seriously thinking about making a dream of mine to run a marathon a reality. I like most runners want this allusive distance. I want the bumper sticker that says "26.2". I want to experience that rush and all the emotions of achieving this dream. Yet, I find myself so unsure... and I think if I am this unsure then how in the world do I think I have what it takes to do this? I keep talking myself out of trying for various reasons which, I will step out on a limb and share. Reason one is I'm too old to handle this type of training now, I know stop laughing, but the truth is I have been feeling my "age" this year more than ever. Two it would require serious winter training for the April marathon I am considering. I have run through some very cold months, but most of the time I was training with someone, so the accountability got me up and out of bed in 30 degree temps, and I don't know if I have it in me to keep plugging through the cold months. Third reason is I know how hard I can be on myself to fixate on a certain time goal and having never run that type of distance, can I keep my expectations real enough to not be faced with disappointment throughout training and the actual marathon? Okay I am feeling very vulnerable letting you all in my head...Lastly I have heard that running a marathon is mostly mental so when I consider the above I'm not sure I have the mental fortitude to do it. My husband keeps telling me that the mental toughness will come with training, and I believe that because I have seen it as I have trained for other distances, but I have had such an off year running that I wonder if I can even get to that point. You see what I'm doing??? Then there is the fear of failure, which I won't even go there... I am considering doing Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. This is the perfect marathon for me because the inspiration I need to run is built right into the race. I do love the feeling that personal accomplishment gives you, the feeling when you have crossed the finish line and achieved that goal, but that is not what drives me to get out there and put in the hard work. And that makes me wonder do I have what "it" is to drive me to do this? I don't know, and that worries me. Do I need to feel that "I have got to have this" feeling in order to take on this dream? My dilemma is, I am not convinced I can do it and are my desires strong enough to take on this dream now? So, the question is, to marathon or not to marathon?

Wednesday, November 4

Me and My Shadow...

Now that my head cold is subsiding I am back on the running trail and back to training our black lab Shadow. He has managed 3 days of running 3 miles each day at a good (not too fast for his mommy) pace in a healing position. I don't prefer to run with him in a healing position because the chance of him tripping me is much greater, but there are still so many people on the trails it is best to keep him close. One of my worst falls happened from tripping over my German Shepherd on a run. I still have knee trouble from time to time from that hard landing. Other than my arm being a little tired the running is going well. Shadow has really surprised me for just being 1 years old. He seems really happy when he runs and I am enjoying having him by my side. If my arm can take it I plan to move him up to 4 miles next week. Any running advice from those of you who have run with pets would be much welcomed.