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First Day Back

I’m about to admit something that’s really quite embarrassing.

Before our training run with last week’s Learn to Run class, I hadn’t run in over three weeks.  

You all know how it goes: the weather doesn’t cooperate, it’s too dark outside, you don’t want to make the trek to the gym, and besides you’ve got a lot of other things you have to get done… and running takes a backseat.

It’s unfortunate because, just like my dog, if I don’t go for a run fairly frequently, my mood goes downhill.

So after last week’s run in the refreshing spring air under a full moon, I decided it was time to get back into the swing of things.  While it’s still the dead of winter around here, spring and summer racing season will be here before we know it and I have plans to PR in the 5K and run a 10K this summer.  

So last night I decided to join in the other runners at the store at our Tuesday night $5 5K.  I started at the back of the pack with my dog and although I would like to blame the dog for the fact that I was the last runner to return, that’s totally not the case. I was tired. And sore.  I had to stop and take a walk break a few times.  My knee started to hurt every time I started to run.  I could barely lift my legs off the ground by the time we got back to the start/finish line. It was the longest distance I had run in months.

It was a very stark reminder of what it was like when I first started running.  It doesn’t feel all that good, and you’re left wondering why anyone would want to do this to themselves 5 times a week! 

This is what happens when you take a long break.  You end up having to start back at square one.  I have an advantage over those actually starting at square one though — I’ve done it before.  Regardless of how tiring and painful it is, I know (because I’ve experienced it) that things will get easier, that I won’t be as sore, and pretty soon I’ll start enjoying it again.  It’s hard to tell people who haven’t experienced these things that you ‘promise’ they will get there.  It’s like trying to tell a child not to do something: you can tell them what to do until you’re blue in the face, but most of the time, they have to learn the lesson by themselves.  

Now that I’m a day removed though, I feel better about myself and I’m looking forward to training this spring/summer.  But boy, that last place finish at a “fun run” really reminded me of what it’s like to be a newbie. 

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If you’ve been anywhere near Reddit, Facebook, Jezebel, or the Huffington Post recently, you’ve probably seen this letter making the rounds.  It’s supposedly an “inspirational” letter to a “fatty” running on a track.  I’ll submit this without comment, but if you’ve read any of my blog, you’ll know exactly where I stand on this.

This, my friends, is why people new to the running community are so afraid to run.  (okay, not without comment, I can’t help it)

Fear holds us back from doing the things that we so wish to achieve.  And people like this letter writer only add to the fear that builds up inside of us, keeping us from achieving our dreams and goals.  

My Learn to Run spring session started last week.  As part of the class, I asked them to complete a pre-class survey.  One of the questions was “What is your biggest fear about learning to run?”  Out of the 22 responses I received to this question, 11 of them were some form of “I’m afraid I’m going to be the slowest one out there.”  Some were worried about being embarrassed.  Some were worried about looking silly.  Two ladies said, “I’m worried everyone is going to be waiting on the chubby girl.”  

I get that.  Fear is so powerful.  And it’s people like this letter writer who my new runners think of every time they decide to go for a run.  No matter how many times I tell them that no one cares, that the running community is supportive, that everyone has to start somewhere, they will still hear this person in the back of their head, telling them that they are fat, that they are “less than”, that they are too gross and too slow to run.  I don’t swear often, but F*** off, letter writer.  

End of comment.

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Happy New Year!

This is my DH, taking No Shave November a little too far, trying to do crunches at our house.  Foiled again!

I’ll be back after the new year.  I’m looking forward to writing some great race reports (Disney Princess Half Marathon, February 2014) and reviewing more products.  It will also be a great year at the store, with some amazing events planned that will be sure to fire up the running community in Rochester.

My last piece of advice for 2013?  When making your New Year’s Resolutions, don’t focus on what you didn’t achieve this year.  Rather, use this time to reflect on all of the things you accomplished this year. Your resolutions should not be yard sticks against which your worth is measured, but something to inspire you.

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My sister, Mallory, usually writes about all of her cooking adventures. She is an amazing baker!
She also runs (picking up the sport after me — a little competition perhaps?) and a couple weekends ago, ran the Twin Cities Marathon. It didn’t go so well. But you know, that’s life. I’ve had my share of failed running experiments and I learned a lesson from every single one.
Here’s Mal’s blog post on her “Marathon Fail.”

The Lentzed Life

Seriously, why do I do this to myself???????  For some reason it really sounded like a good idea, not sure why because the first one didn’t go so well.  I honestly thought, experience would be on my side and I’d do much better than the last time…  I was wrong and I need to remember to stop believing in myself 😉

I could blame a lot of things on another failed marathon attempt, but I take full responsibility…  I am not meant to run 26.2 miles, and I understand that now.  I truly enjoy running and like seeing what I can do (obviously it’s not marathons).

I don’t mean for this post to be a pity party, this isn’t an Attention Seeking post.  I’m not looking for uplifting words like “At least you finished” or “That’s impressive, I would never do that”, or “Lots of people wouldn’t have even started”.  All…

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Blog Update

Yes, I’m still here.  And yes, I’m still running.  And thanks for asking, yes, I am still writing!

And yet this blog has been terribly silent of late.  So sorry about that!  But no fear, I have several new posts already written and a race report from Disney coming, as well as a couple of product reviews that I’d like to do.

I promise I’ll try to do better this time around!

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Week 3

I meant to; I really, truly meant to document my experience training for the triathlon on this blog.  Yet somehow, life got in the way.  Actually, more accurately, my computer got in the way.

Anyhow, here I am, mid-way through week 3 of training.

I guess you can probably assume from the fact that this is week three, that I successfully made it through weeks 1 and 2.  I will try to dutifully post from now on, to keep a nice, accurate record of my experience.

Here are some stats:

  • I am on day 17 of training
  • I have lost 4-5 lbs. since starting, and
  • I have lost 8 or so lbs. since the Holiday season
  • I can now run 1 mile without feeling like I’m going to die
  • I can swim more than 1/3 mile in the pool whichout feeling like I’m going to die
  • I can bike 10 miles in approximately 30 minutes – but I do feel like I might sweat to death
  • I have done more laundry in the last three weeks than at any other point in my life

Yesterday I biked 9 miles and ran for 1 mile before my self-defense class.  I wasn’t supposed to run, but I wanted to try out some new techniques and a new running form that I had been reading about.

A few days ago I posted on my Facebook status that my knees were absolutely killing me, and I wasn’t sure that I was every going to be able to run an entire 4 miles.  An old friend from high school suggested I look at Chi Running.  She had taken a workshop when she was training for her marathon and it had been helpful.

I looked it up.  It all sounded very interesting.  The basic concept is that you tilt a little forward from the hips, strike at the mid-foot, and use gravity (forward motion) to propel yourself, consequently using less energy as you run.  Unfortunately, the workshops are only offered in exciting and glamorous places like SAn Francisco and Seattle (is Seattle glamorous or exciting?).  The book sounded interesting, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to spend the money on something that may or may not work.

So I looked at a couple of videos online and read through some tips, and decided to run a bit yesterday after my bike ride to try it out.

And I was shocked – shocked I tell you – to discover that these tips actually worked!  I ran the 1 mile without any problems with my knee.  Now, when I got off the treadmill, my knee still hurt.  And it still hurts today (though, I guess, not as much as yesterday).  But, the really positive thing about all of this is that I figure less stress on my knee while running will eventually equal less pain in my knee over all.

Today, I need to run for 25 minutes.  This will probably put me in the 2 mile range.  Which means that in order to run for 4 miles, and eventually for 6 (because apparently my sister now wants me to relay in a marathon in October!), I will need to be able to run for an hour.  Right now, running for an hour seems like an eternity, but I really do think that at some point in the future I will be able to do it.

Everyone on Facebook has been very encouraging, though I have to say that my husband has not been as encouraging as I thought he would be.  My suspicion is that he doesn’t think I’ll be able to do it, so he doesn’t want to waste his time.  Which I think is just as bad as the alternative – him not caring at all.

What has really gotten me through these last two and a half weeks has not really been the weight loss or the ability to run farther or longer than I ever have been able to before, or the fact that I have more energy, that I’m in a better mood, and that I’m overall eating better.  What has gotten me through all of this is the thought of not completing the triathlon.  I’ve already registered for it, paid close to $60 to do so.  I’ve spent a lot of money on clothes and shoes and sports bras, etc.  But even that is not what is keeping me going.

I just keep thinking about what everyone will say or think when I fail or when I quit.  They’ll all say, “I knew she wouldn’t keep it up.”  Or, “She quit – once again.”  Or, “I saw that coming.”  Or a number of other unpleasant and disappointing things.  Do I want people to be disappointed with me?  Absolutely not.  I want people to be proud of me.  And because I’ve declared to practically the entire world what I plan to do, I have a lot of people behind me, pushing me, telling me that I can keep it up, that I’ll eventually be able to do the whole thing.  I feel accountable to them.  Even to my co=workers and the clients I work with.  I know they want to see me accomplish something.  And setting my mind to something adn actually doing it, is something that my clients need to see as well  They don’t need to see someone else quitting or giving up.  They’ve seen enough of that.  They need to see someone pushing through pain and a lack of motivation, and bad weather, and lack of time, to finish something.  I want to be an inspiration for them.  But I also want to be an inspiration for me.

How many times have I quit something I’ve started?  Too many to count.  How many times have I just given up when something gets too hard?

I’ve had enough of giving up and quitting.  Who wants to be friends with a quitter anyways?

(Also, I’ve determined that I’m going to get a symbolic tattoo if I complete the triathlon in September.)

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Obsessed

So I’m totally obsessed with makeup right now.  Its beyond my control and I just can’t help myself.  Thus my new infatuation with the makeup blogs Makeup Geek and Temtalia.

Here is a teal and purple eye I did for Memorial day.

purple and teal 5.25.09 view 2purple and teal 5.25.09

I’m still experimenting with the camera and the lighting.  You can tell that these pictures were taken on two different settings with different light sources.  They look different, but they both capture what the eye looks like, if that’s possible.  The teal color I used in the inner lid and on the crease is not showing up as well as it does in real life.  That may be because of the product I used or because of the lighting.  As I said, I’m experimenting, and I’ll continue working on it as my makeup collection increases.  (On a side note, from these pictures I’ve determined that I really need to spend some time on my eyebrows.  I’ve always liked my eyebrows so I never thought I needed to do anything to them, but I will need to invest in something to fill them in a shape them so I don’t get those scary fly-aways.)

Speaking of the makeup I used, let’s get a list.

Face:

  • Bare Minerals Foundation in Fairly Light
  • Bare Minerals face color in Warmth
  • Bare Minerals blush in Beauty
  • (Can you tell I was obsessed with Bare Minerals for a while?)

Eyes:

  • MAC shadestick in Beige-ing (all over lid)
  • Clinique color surge eyeshadow in peacock (in crease and inner lid as well as around the tear duct)
  • MAC eyeshadow in Parfait Amour (outer lid)
  • Bare Minerals eyeshadow in Camp (just a wash over the crease)
  • Smashbox Jet Set eyeliner in Midnight Black (upper and lower)
  • Scott Barnes Eye Ice in Lame (just a dab in the inner corner to brighten)

Hope you enjoyed!

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