Week 11 – getting excited, feeling pretty good

One week from today, my hubby and I will be running our second half-marathon, although for some reason, it really truly feels like my first. I mentioned this in my last blog post and I am still feeling this way. I wish I could describe it, but I can’t. I do think, however, it’s because I feel so much more prepared.

I was looking back at my iCal (calendar) on my computer at the month before last year’s half-marathon. The race took place December 2, so I looked at November. I use my iCal to keep track of everything – work schedule, scanner schedule, birthdays, holidays, running events, workouts, etc. Each one has its own color. Workouts are in yellow. I took a screen shot of the workout calendar from November of last year, with just the workouts showing – here’s what it looks like:

There are a total of 12 workouts from November of last year.

Here’s a look at what September of this year looks like. Our race is October 6, so obviously, I wanted to look at September. Keep in mind that there are two days left in the month – the rest of today and tomorrow, which will BOTH have yellow marked on the dates. Here’s September:

There will be 24 total workouts for the month of September. That is DOUBLE the amount of workouts from  the month before our last race. Wow! No wonder I feel more ready for this half-marathon compared to the last one. I guess you can say I am doubly ready for this one!

Well, here’s a look back at this past week: Monday – rest day; Tuesday – ran 6 miles; Wednesday - went to the YMCA and rode bike 7.3 miles; Thursday – ran 6 miles; Friday - went to the YMCA and rode bike 8.4 miles; Saturday – ran 3.09 miles (this was a 5K race for Alexandria Technical and Community College); Sunday – will be either running or riding bike, I haven’t decided yet and the day is still young!

Last race before THE race

On Saturday, Al and I participated in our last race before THE BIG race next Sunday. We ran in the Alexandria Technical and Community College’s first-ever “Running for Scholarships” 5K. It was downpouring when I woke up, which made me quite cranky. It was still raining, although not coming down nearly as hard, when we arrived at the college. I had made up my mind that I was not going to race because of the rain/cold weather and the risk of getting sick. The last time I ran in the rain, I came down with a nasty cold. And with the big race one week away, I have been trying my best to stay as healthy as possible. As we approached the registration table and I saw the turnout for the first-ever event – there were many more people than I expected – I quickly changed my tune and decided to run. Yes, even though it was cold, dreary and STILL raining.

Boy, am I glad I changed my mind…I ended up with a new personal record (PR) for running a 5K. According to my official time, I ran it in 28:52. According to my timer, I ran it in 28:51. That’s about the closest I’ve ever been to the official timing. I think maybe the rain helped. I also kept saying over and over in my head, “Run with your heart, not your legs” and “The faster you run, the faster you’re done.” Sometimes, repeating mantras like this help. And then again, sometimes, they don’t! Oh, a big shout out to my hubby who was the second place winner in his age category and also, he was the 14th runner overall (technically, he was the 10th runner overall because the first four were disqualified because they didn’t run the whole course…they unfortunately, cut it short due to wrong directions.) I was 37th overall. Not bad for both of us considering there were 144 participants! (Okay, there were only 80 runners, the rest were walkers!)

A little blurry, but we were drenched. I actually wore a running/wind jacket over my shirt, but I was still drenched. We both quickly changed into dryer/warmer clothes. Kudos to ATCC for a very fun and well-run first-ever event. We’ll definitely be back next year.

After the race, we opted for breakfast at Northwoods Cafe, which is where my son’s girlfriend works. Her mom works there also, so it was fun to see both of them. Here’s what I treated myself to for breakfast (yes, I shared with Al!):

Yes, it tasted as good as it looks!

After we got done eating, I went home and quickly got ready. I jumped in my car and headed south, to my sister’s farm in Jasper, MN. My mom and dad were there, along with two of my four brothers – Steve from Mahtomedi and Alan from Boise, Idaho. A couple of nieces and great-nieces were there, along with a nephew and great-nephew. The trip was short – about three hours – but SO worth the drive. It was fun to be together. Here are a couple of pics from the trip:

Yep, I rode a horse. This is Blaze, my niece, Chelsea’s horse. Her dad trailered it to the farm for the weekend.

Left to right: Steve, Karen, me and Alan. It was a tad-bit windy on Saturday. We were missing Charles, who lives in Illinois and Mike, who lives in Minnetonka. We were also missing our dear sister, Donna, who passed away nearly three years ago from breast cancer.

I love this picture of my sister, Karen, and me. Not sure what we were laughing at, but it must have been funny! I don’t think my great-nephew, David, thought it was funny.

Us with mom and dad. What a great looking bunch!

It was definitely a fun time. My sister even made me a cake – or at least that’s what they all told me! It was one of my favorite kinds – a strawberry Jell-O poke cake. Both my brother, Al, and I had three pieces (they were cut REALLY small!). But he and I came up with an idea of how “healthy” they are for you and how they cover almost all the food groups: Fruit – it was STRAWBERRY Jell-O; Veggies – it was made with VEGETABLE oil; Protein – it had EGGS in it; Dairy – the frosting had MILK in it; and of course, it had lots of carbs! Obviously, we were just joking, but we sure had fun coming up with “reasons” why it was okay to eat three pieces each!

Here is a look at the rest of my week in pics:

OH, I almost forgot, I had kind of a small – okay, it was pretty huge to me – NSV (non-scale victory for those of you who are non-Weight Watchers members) this week. Are you ready for this? I fit into my prom dress from when I was a junior in high school. This is the only year I had a prom dress because I didn’t go my sophomore or my senior year. A friend of mine, Trena, had the dress in storage because she had borrowed it from me several years ago. I am so glad she has kept it all these years. The best part is that I actually got it zipped up all the way in the back and I could actually breathe – okay, kind of breathe! Check it out (don’t mind the hideous tan lines I didn’t really realize I had!):

For some reason, this has been a goal of mine since I began my journey nearly five years ago. I was so excited that Trena found the time to dig this thing out of storage for me to try on and I was even more excited that it actually fit. I was thrilled!

Thanks for reading all my babblings today. Now go and make it a great week!

6 thoughts on “Week 11 – getting excited, feeling pretty good

  1. Congratulations on your PR, and in the rain yet!

    Good luck on your race next weekend, although I always say that if you train hard, you don’t need much luck! You’ve had a great training cycle, now enjoy race week and the race: You’ve earned it with all your hard work.

    I love those non scale victories, although I’ve never heard that term before. Just this summer, I shrunk to a smaller pants size and weight than I was in high school, and I was pretty fit back then! By the way, never apologize for your “runner’s tan,” wear it as a badge of honor!

  2. Yes, Celeste! You are more than ready! Best of luck this weekend! Have so much fun!

    Fab pic of you and Karen! Donna is smiling :)

    Also, you look amazing! Be proud of those running tan lines!

  3. Thanks, Jim!

    I wish you nothing but the best on your marathon this Sunday as well. I’m sure you’re going to do great. And as a Weight Watchers member, I can’t believe you haven’t heard the NSV term. I bet you’ve had plenty along your journey! And you are right…my tan lines are a badge of honor! Thanks.

  4. Thanks, erin! I appreciate your vote of confidence. And yes, I am sure Donna is smiling down on us. Actually, I know she is cause I can feel her sometimes. Kind of weird, but I definitely do. Also, like Jim said and you said, yes, I guess I am proud of those tan lines! Thanks again, erin.