Thursday, September 26, 2013


I mean, really, the title says it all. It's how I feel lately, how dragged down I feel, and how exhausted I feel. The idea of getting up out of bed and putting my trusty, dirty Kinvaras on is just sometimes... the last thing I want to do.
Last year on National Running Day I spelled out top reasons that I love to hit the pavement:

  • Stress relief
  • To make myself better
  • To push myself
  • To stay in shape
  • To find a community
I feel that, almost literally, all these things are missing right now! I don't  mean to sound the Debbie Downer I'm going to be here, but I'm also realizing why I'm struggling with so much of this. Stress relief: I'm stressed, I'm exhausted, and I'd rather sleep than go run when I have a three-hour round-trip commute ahead of me. I'm so far out of shape, I feel lousy and gross! And finding a community has been difficult, as I work Saturday mornings and nearly all our groups out here run on Saturday mornings only.

Excuses. I don't like excuses and feel like that's all these are. But I'm also trying to pin-point where my lack of motivation comes from, especially given Sunday's awesome race. Try and piece that one together - if you can, holler, because I'm sure stuck on how things just aren't matching up.

Where do you go when you're looking for inspiration?

Monday, September 23, 2013

Race Report: Alive and Running 5K

Los Angeles, CA | 9.22.13

It's not every day that I get to combine work and hobbies -- I'd feel different if I were a personal trainer or something, but given that I work in higher education, it's not every day that I get to incorporate my running and racing habit with what I do for a living. And it's kind of awesome when I do. Upon learning that I'm a runner, a colleague asked if I'd be interested in coordinating a Marymount team to participate in the Didi Hirsch Alive and Running 5K, and use it as a event to kick of our Suicide Awareness Week on campus. Happily!

While about 30 people expressed interest (which is awesome), about 14 of us registered and about 9 of us actually showed up run and walk the event. I was pretty happy - it's not every day you can pull college students out of bed to go run 3 miles for fun on a Sunday morning.
Marymount Mariners representing!
I wasn't sure what I was doing at this race -- should I run with some of our students? Go hard and see what I'm made of lately (which hasn't felt like much)? I hadn't run since the Saturday prior, literally, so while I felt like I had fresh legs, I wasn't sure that that would work in my favor either.

I'm in the bright blue shorts, in the back.
I took off, spent the first few minutes weaving around all the walkers (dear walkers, start in back, please) and bolted out the first mile in 8:32. Um, whoops? I made it to the turn-around at 1.5 miles in just about 14 minutes, so I knew that I could do something, even if it wasn't a PR, this would be damn well close and I could call it a win. I found one of our students, Morgan, and learned that this was her first 5K ever, and that she used to play on our women's soccer team. She said she'd stick by me to see my 'miracle' happen (I noted that it'd be a miracle if I PRed and she goes, "Oh! Well I like seeing miracles happen so I'll stick with you!" Sweetheart). Mile 2 with just 10 minutes to go to make it a PR...

THAT, my friends, is a time that is 3 seconds slower than my PR, set in June. THAT is a time that I would not think I could pull off given my lackluster running pattern lately. THAT is a time and a race that I could safely use as a boost to get me through these next few weeks and RnR Las Vegas.

The course was almost completely flat, save for a slight grade coming back into the finish area. The road itself was boring, just a Los Angeles tree-lined street, out and back course -- with the only saving grace being that we were a) less than two blocks from the ocean, which provided even more gorgeous weather on the first day of autumn! And b) that we were parallel to the landing strip at LAX so if you wanted, you could just watch planes land the whole time. Kind of awesome. Kind of like Operation Jack.

 We also learned that Anna and Morgan (mind you, her first 5K!) finished first and third, respectively, in their age group! Excitement. All in all, of the 9 of us, 4 students completed their first 5K ever, whether by running or walking, and had a great time. What a boost!

So glad we got to do this and so glad it was the kicking off point for our awareness week on campus. What a great event! Thank you Didi Hirsch Foundation!

Did you race this weekend? How'd it go?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

RnR Las Vegas | Training

It's finally happening... finally running Vegas... finally running a RnR race (bad reviews aside, I still want to run one and see it for myself)... and finally, another running vacation with my best girlfriends (there's at least 8 of us that I can think of!). I. Cannot. Wait.

Training was technically supposed to begin two weeks ago, but I'm hardly calling it that I did, so I've modified my plan a bit and am cranking out a 10-week plan instead. It's grueling, it's motivating, and I just need to get back at it. I'm already signed up for a 5K in two weeks (first 5K since June, mind you) that I will be doing with work (don't you love it when worlds collide?) and am eye-balling my 10K for the first weekend in October. I have plans. I just need to make them happen.

So here you have it. The plan.

The New Week 1 has started off well so far - at least in comparison to Old Week 1 and 2. I am ready to make this commitment and make it a great race and get myself back to where I used to be. Because I miss it. But look forward to the first full report on Sunday afternoon when I get through the first uber long run - I think that'll be the tell-tale sign of how this is going to go!

Will this be the magic race for #sub2orbust? I'm not sure. I think it's too early to make that call, especially given the lack of running over the course of the last two months. But maybe!. Stay tuned.

Are you running the Strip at Night with me? 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Worst Blogger Ever Award

...goes to ME!

I win. Or lose, depending how you look at it. To say that life has certainly been overwhelming - in the best way possible - would be an understatement, but at least I am enjoying every bit of this crazy ride. It's absurd to think that I've been back in California for two months now (as of tomorrow!), and that I've been at the new job for about seven weeks (also as of tomorrow).

Orientation for new students at Marymount!

This past weekend, I was in Texas for a sorority board meeeting. I love these women and am so excited when I get to spend 40 glorious hours with them. I packed running shoes, and clothes, and set the alarm... and never made it to the hotel gym either morning. The first morning I was a little irritated and the second morning I didn't really care. And that's okay. I need to find my place again and maybe right now, I just need to settle into it. I'll find that place again! 

 Being back in the same city/area/time zone as the boyfriend is pretty also freaking fantastic. My Friday evenings are at high school football games, where he coaches, and reliving spending high school days cheering him on as he played! It's fun times - and quite the trip as well. Part of getting into this groove with running lately is also figuring out how to balance work, a commute, and a social life. It's trickier than I thought and makes me realize how much running in Georgia was my social life. And that was okay, and it worked -- but here I have more of a balancing act to do! I'll figure it out in time!

Friday night lights.
Running has certainly taken a backseat in this life - mostly to the fact that I'm spending three (yes, three) hours in the car each day on the commute to and from my job. While it's not ideal, and far from that, I'm doing some major financial recovery and that, my friends, is a definite perk. I'm saving lots, paying off the debt, and making some progress towards some financial goals (namely, having a savings account again). So, it's a pain, but there are benefits to come, for sure.

Training for RnRLV is technically under way, but the last two weeks have been a struggle to find that training regimen groove again. As of this week, I start what will be my normal work hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 11 am to 7 pm. So I have mornings to still peel myself out of bed and go run, but have some recovery and down time afterwards. I don't have to peel myself out of bed at 5:30, but even 7 works! This makes me super excited - not to mention that I'll never drive during rush hour again. Woo!
Training update and plan to come on Wednesday. Because I'm back. And plan on actually blogging again - just you wait and see!

When you changed lifestyles (work, social life, etc.), how did you adjust your running? Tips?