For as long as I can remember, I told people "I can't run." But in March of 2009, I decided that this was no longer an option. From my first 5K to my second half marathon, I've endured my highest highs and lowest lows as an official Runner. This year I want to embrace running for something beyond times and distances.

Running is so much more than merely getting out there. I want to get out there and love it.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares and go...


[Question about foam rollers/compression sleeves at the end...maybe you can help me out?]

No strippers and margaritas this past week! But it was sticky sweaty HOT anyway. Being inspired once again by Claire's post, I gathered up my guts and decided to run outside last Thursday instead of my usual gym run. I plotted a 5 mile stretch and said a prayer. I had two things going for me: it was overcast and only 92 degrees, rather than sunny and nearly 100 the day before. Well it didn't matter because I still seriously sucked at it. I got only 2.5 miles through it before I seriously wanted to stop and head back. At 3 I decided to cut through the loop early and before embarking on a hill with an official 3% incline, I gave up and walked. I started up again when I got lost in suburbia where all the houses look the same and everything ends in a cul de sac.
I ended the run a quarter mile shy of 5 miles and was relatively satisfied that I at least tried it. But pretty depressed knowing full well that if the Half Marathon is anywhere close to 90 some degrees and humid, I just won't be able to rock it. Yes that's a defeatist attitude, but at least I'm prepared. And yeah yeah, I signed up for a Half Marathon in July and I have no one to blame but myself ;) Seriously though, I have no idea why they aren't starting it at 7am. My Chicago Half in September started at 7:30. There's a big difference running the last few miles at 9:30 vs 10:30 on a hot summer day. Chicago changed their start time relatively last minute, so I have hope.

Speaking of suburbia, I officially love running in the city way more than in nature. What's wrong with me? I trained most of my first Half along the lakeshore path in Bayview/St. Francis...and yeah it was really pretty! I've been doing most of my long runs this time combining downtown and the lake front and I just adore it. There's so much to look at, so many people I pass, lots of distractions, yet super relaxing. I've also stopped listening to music when I run downtown. I find myself way more calm when I can listen to the music of the traffic in the city...Linger on the sidewalk where the neon signs are pretty...How can you lose? Seriously, maybe Petula Clark was singing about her training runs.

And speaking of the concrete jungle, no matter how much I claim to feel better running in my Newton's, I still have some all-over leg pain after these long runs. Running on a lot of concrete will do that I'm matter how you are foot-striking. Therefore, I'm wondering if a foam roller and/or shin compression sleeves will help? Anyone out there use either of these? The pain isn't centralized in any one location...just a general soreness everywhere!

I've got less than a month until the Half now. My 10+ mile training runs are pretty much over I think. This weekend I'm heading down to Claire's territory to run the Lighthouse 10 Mile! Doesn't look like it'll be too hot, so I'm stoked about that!! The Saturday following I am in Chicago for a design conference. As much as I would absolutely LOVE to run through the streets of Chicago for an 8-10 miler, I think the delicious food and DRINKS Saturday night will prevent this from happening.

So I'm in somewhat of a home stretch here. And I'm going to try to promise myself that Half Training is over for 2011. Yes yes the bright lights and neon of Vegas are like an evil siren temptress, but I will refrain and focus on minimal/natural happy running over the remainder of the summer!


  1. I can not WAIT to see you this weekend...we will have an incredible time at Lighthouse. Drove some of the course today with the kids and was reminded again how pretty this race will LOVE it because it has all the and nature running..and bad ass people to boot. I hated foam rolling and you're welcome to take mine home with you this weekend and give it a new home.

    Summer running sucks...there is just no two ways about it. No more summer halfs for you young lady!

  2. Sounds like an overall great plan to me.

    Btw, speaking from a small towner, I've always wondered how city dwellers legs/feet can stand the pounding of feet on concrete when I see runners in the city. How DO you do it?


  3. Claire this is going to be AWESOME!! I can't wait to actually run with people! Yourself most especially (!!!!!!) but also be part of a race for the first time since last September. When I ran with you at the South Shore Half, I was just a fake ;) Plus I could barely even run 5 miles back then!

    Weebs, I don't even know. When I started running again at the end of this past winter, I did it on a treadmill (first experience with this). Then I swapped over to the streets again and it was AWFUL!!! I wasn't sure I'd ever be able to handle the concrete once again, but I manage. It's not a pleasant sensation and I am positive trails would be so much more gentile. Perhaps one day I'll get more excited for trails and think of running in the city as junk food (soooo good but soooo bad for me!)