Sunday, January 20, 2013

You're the inspiration

I'm lucky enough to keep finding ways to be inspired to run.  Part of it is my own mindset--I am always looking for an opportunity to be inspired.  But the other part is some really great people that have made me the regular runner I am today.  And it's time to thank a few of the people that have inspired me to keep putting on foot in front of the other.

The only 4th grade girl that ran faster than me::::I'm probably the only person the planet that remember how fast they ran a mile during one of their Presidential Physical Fitness tests.  Mine was 8:08 in 4th grade.  I was pretty pleased with my time until I saw the results posted for ALL the girls in the gym.  I was #2.  Let the competition begin!!!

My dad::::He started training for a local 10K in the late 80's and did some of his running at the high school track (the sights! the smells!).  While he ran his 6.2, the rest of the family did the mile fun run.  Admittedly, I was more proud of my t-shirt than crossing the finish line, but how else was I to learn about swag???

Mr. Morris::::My high school track coach sophomore year.  After I was decidedly not cut out for short distance running, I opted to try long distance track.  Mr. Morris can be accredited with almost any sort of 'skill' that I might possess related to running.  He taught us to keep our fists unclenched and to act as though we were hold a potato chip in each hand.  He taught me the value of varied workouts (hills, speed, long easy, short easy, time trials) and what pace was all about.  He taught me to find a mantra and use it (stronger, longer, faster!) and that a training log can help you learn a lot about how to make yourself a better runner.  Lastly, he taught me that running is 80% mental and that your body can handle a lot more than you think.

Adam::::I can't imagine life without him, so I can't really imagine running without thanking him.  Besides being my chaffeur to early morning races and learning to never put my sports bras in the dryer, he's to thank for buying me an iPod which basically was one of two catalysts that got me running again in my 'adult' life.  I'm still trying to convince him to come over to the dark side, but I'm optimistic that he can become a late learner.

Lisa Jhung::::I started reading her blog on and slowly started to catch the marathon bug.  I specifically remember a blog she had written that talked about a hilly 16-miler and I was like, I want to run a hilly 16-miler!  She made other parts of her life accessible which made it seem possible that you could be both a marathon runner and not just drop all other aspects of your life.  Running wasn't just for losing weight or keeping in shape, but it was for feeling strong and pushing your body to do amazing things.

ForeverRun (aka Sara)::::The first Loopster that I read regularly.  Like Lisa, she blogged mostly about running, but she also talked about the ups and downs of her life.  I was amazed that this amateur runner could be so fast!  She wasn't getting paid to blog or run, but she was so dedicated and so good all while being extraordinarily humble.  Her stories unfolded like a well-scripted movie--tales of triumph, sadness, injury, and happy twists of fate.

Flying Tomato:::The first Loopster I met in person.  Uninspired by latest marathon endeavor and miserable with my work life, he listened like an old friend and coerced me to run when I needed a push.  I can thank him for my first half-marathon and for reminding me that I don't have to always take running so seriously.  Sometimes people come in and out of your life for the right reason and you never know why until you have some time to gain perspective.


In marathon training news, I just completed week 3.  Hills? Not really.  Strength training? Just hauling the pool floats. Not running the LSD too fast? Oops.

So this week I sucked at accomplishing my goals.  Oh well.  I am too happy about my amazing run yesterday to care.  14.11 miles in 1:47:40 with a 7:38 pace.  I'm not entire convinced of the pace because I used RunKeeper instead of my Garmin, but the distance was dead on and so I can only assume the time/pace was correct.  If anything would be awry, it would be the GPS.  I forgot my Garmin at home (something did feel missing when I left), so I used the app instead. 

I started out fast to warm up my freezing toes.  And then I just kept feeling good.  I slowed down for a little while to try to pace myself, but then I just decided that all arrows were pointing to run fast.  I saw a kid running full tilt with his tongue sticking out sideways and I decided that he had the right idea.  Just go and go and go and go because I can.  Splits: 7:44, 7:35, 7:38, 7:44, 7:42, 8:06, 7:46, 7:44, 7:50, 7:33, 7:34, 7:18, 7:14, 7:17.  Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeet!

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