Running Wild

Anyone can run. Really.

Well, maybe not anyone. If you hate it, why would you do it?

If you have even a hint of desire to lace up those sneaks, then GET TO IT.

Run at a snail’s pace if you have to. It’s still running. =)

In March I ran my first race since sophomore year of high school. Don’t remember my stunning victory? Get all of the gory details here. 😉

I know that five miles isn’t exactly an impressive race distance in the world of running. In fact, most of my regular runs hover somewhere around that distance. Big deal, right?

That being said, I still think that kicking butt at that distance is bad ass (er, make that my own butt…forget about the couple hundred people who passed the finish ahead of me).

I want to do it again.

I’m running a 5-mile race over Memorial Day weekend. While I’ve definitely been hearing some snickers when I mention that I’m training for the race, I don’t really see what’s so wrong with that. No, it’s not 26.2 but ain’t no harm in wanting to be faster than last time, right?

Racing has this way of making the butterflies in my belly go into full tornado-mode. It’s not the distance that is anxiety-inducing so much as the prep leading up to race day. I’m not meant to be a great runner…at least not without a lot of work. My legs were born in knots and spasms, yoga is a tortuous experience, and injury always seems to be lurking right around the corner.

I’ve decided, though, that I love running too much to just throw in the towel and say it’s not for me. I’m sure that one day I will see the light, wonder why the heck I’ve been pounding the pavement all of these years, and switch to my bicycle full-time.

Today is not that day.

I’ve never followed a training plan before, which seems nuts given how schedule-oriented I am and how even weekends have some vague semblance of a plan. What can I say? I am my mother’s daughter. We don’t waste time!

Tina introduced all of her loyal readers to Runner’s World Smart Coach and I do not say this lightly; I AM TOTALLY HOOKED.

A free program that generates a logical and manageable running plan??? How have I existed without this?!

Here’s what this bad boy put together for me:

This is my kind of plan! History has taught me that I cannot run two days in a row and really should limit myself to 3 days/week. That gives me lots of time in between to stretch, ice, cry, break up with running, reunite the next morning, cycle, strength train, sit on the couch eating sweet potato chips and wasabi peas, ignore my 5:15am alarm…you get the idea.

I only have to give it my best showing 3 days a week? 3 days a week will get me across that finish line in sub-8 minute miles? That’s a small miracle, I’d say.

So far so good and only 3 weeks to go. Wish me luck! And send ice packs, please. Lots of ice packs.

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3 Responses to “Running Wild”

  1. Hey Em! First – nice blog :). Second – if you’re into training for running, you should definitely check out Hal Higdon. He’s a senior writer for Runner’s World and I’ve been reading his books lately – it really helps me get my mind in gear for all of my training. http://www.halhigdon.com/, I have Marathon, How to Train and Run Fast. Marathon of course focuses more on marathons, but it’s really helpful in that he covers all types of coaching by coaches everywhere, and he covers from first-timers (without a track/XC history) to elite runners. He talks about mileage, rest, pacing etc. The “How to Train” book talks about distances from 5k to marathon (and possibly even ultramarathon), so it definitely would have some 5 miler advice in there – it has training schedules too. Not suggesting you ditch the SmartCoach (I use it too) but it’s nice to have a seasoned runner (100+ marathons) dispensing all that they’ve learned along the way.

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