Summer Daze With Heat and Haze

When you recognize that failing doesn’t make you a failure, you give yourself permission to try all sorts of things” -Lauren Fleshman

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                                                           Tank

runway braimage

     It’s been just about four months since I fell apart in the Providence Marathon. May doesn’t seem that long ago, but only because it was a huge downward spiral from there. I believe things happen for a reason. I think I was so infatuated with qualifying for Boston, it made me lose sight of everything else.

I picked this quote by Lauren Fleshman because it fits me to a t.  I think as soon as I realized I had not failed my marathon, I was able to regain confidence and focus on the next steps. My hip was a big issue during my marathon, along with my knee.  I did everything right. I was on BQ pace for a majority of the race until my hip and knee could not take it. I trained and did my long runs.  I finally realize I did not fail!!!!

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This is the first week I have been doing base runs for an hour.  It has not been easy, but yesterday felt like a huge milestone. I was doing really well with my every other day base runs but this week I decided to up them.  No more every other days for this girl!  It wasn’t easy and the heat did not help! I had to stop three times Wednesday to stretch my Quads.  I’m going to pt and I’m starting to feel stronger, but my knee and hip still hurt.

Yesterday was the first time in a while I was able to focus on not stopping. I definitely ran slower, but it felt awesome being able to not stop!  I think I just kept racing so much I took it for granted and didn’t really have to work for it anymore.  I remember running two half marathons in the same weekend.  I’d do one and then hop in my car for another race the next day. My times were great and I had a blast.  I lost sight of the work and art that went into running.  I ran so much it really took a toll on my body.

Sometimes I feel sad I am not as fast as I used to be. However, I think there comes a point where you have to focus on the love of a sport.  I promise you I smile. I may have ran slow yesterday, but I enjoyed my run and didn’t want to stop. I haven’t felt that in a while.  I stopped praying to get my speed back and started to be thankful for all that running has given me.  It’s hard for me to understand why people hate running. Hate is such a strong word.  I can’t help but think they are doing it wrong!

On to sunny things!  It’s been so hot this week that I have been doing everything to hydrate and stay active at the same time!  It’s my last week of freedom because I am a teacher! I have a meeting today and hopefully a schedule soon to follow. I teach ESL and love my little second and third graders!  So what helps me run, teach, and attempt to be wonder mom and girlfriend?  I have no idea!  I think my love for coffee is a bonus! I have cut down this summer but I’m sure I’ll be back up to 6 cups. My work hours are 7:35-3:45 everyday except Wednesday. I have to be to work at 7!!!! Ouch!

When I’m out on my run, I get super hot! You have no idea!  I love running in the winter because I do not feel like a tea kettle boiling! As most of you know, I’m a member of Oiselle.  I recently took on a role as “Oiselle Volee Regional Leader for NY.” It sounds nice. I’m not the best leader, but I don’t mind being a running cheerleader!!!!  I’m going to arrange some meet ups and I am required to race in Oiselle… Which is not hard to do since I own a zillion things!  My favorites are the Mac roga shorts and the runway bra.  If I attempt to wear a shirt over my bra, it’s usually the farrow tank (which I have in money and gray).  I also enjoy wearing the Verrazano bra and stride shorts.  I know some girls prefer baggy, but I do better with less!

I’m meeting up with fellow regional leader, Victoria.  We are both “benched” from racing so we are going to be running the Rochester verses Buffalo Metro 10! I haven’t ran more than 7 miles in forever, but this will be a step in the right direction.  I’m not paying attention to the clock.  If life is all about having fun and accomplishing goals, my goal tomorrow is to finish after smiling for 10 miles.  I’ll worry about racing another day.  As a Oiselle, it’s about being a team!

What races do you have coming up? Do you own any oiselle clothes and if so, what are some of your favorites?  When is your

next race?

Almost August

imageWhen you can’t run or shouldn’t run, what do you do?

Over the past few years, I have gradually explored the world of cycling.  My hip and knee have been issues since May and I’ve had to give up most of my racing season. It has been pretty awful, but I have found that cross training can be enjoyable and a good back up for anyone who is injured.

I remember when I was pregnant and could no longer run. I walked all the time, but it just wasn’t the same. Now that I know of different cross training techniques, I would definitely not go back to walking if I were pregnant again.

Cycling is a great back up. I don’t know if you cycle, but it is a great experience. Just this week, I thought to myself: “I wonder what other people think about when they cycle?”

Here is what I think about: when I cycle, it isn’t always about speed. It’s that good feeling about getting lost on the bike and looking at life in a new way. It sounds silly. When I run, I’m so focused I don’t notice as much. When I went biking the other day, I noticed a man fly fishing, a beautiful creek, and just how quiet the road was I was biking. I think I take in the view more on a bike, even though I’m convinced the hills are easier to run up than bike up.

I have missed out on more than 9 races and I truly miss pacing for races. I tell myself people are much worse off and I should be thankful I can even run.  I’ve come a long way in running and even biking. I’m definitely a stronger runner but I could definitely be a stronger biker. I’m too nervous to race cycling because of accidents and mistakes people make.  Maybe someday ill do more than one race a year.

I took the summer off from teaching and I think it was a great decision, even though my bank account disagrees. Sometimes the people who live life to the fullest are the ones with empty bank accounts.  This has been a great summer and I hope August brings me happiness.  Besides my running, I couldn’t be happier! I’m not looking forward to taking workshops, but my birthday is in a month and it’s been a great year….

MIA – My Racing Season

“A good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you and were helped by you will remember you when forget – me – nots have withered.  Carve your name on hearts, not on marble. ”  – Charles H. Spurgeon.

me and lillylillydance

I feel like it has been forever since I have written in my blog.  The truth is I had a lot of time I needed to get over my marathon.  I had such a good run until mile 15.  I don’t know what happened to me and I just fell apart.   I was mentally ready but I was just in so much pain I could no longer run.

About 2 weeks before my marathon, I felt a pain in my hip.  Between my hip and my knee, I was hurting too much to continue at my pace of sub 8:17.  I knew what I needed for Boston and I wanted to fight for it.  I thought about how far I have come in life and how hard I have worked for this moment.  I thought for sure I had it.

When I crossed the finish line in 4:03, my heart was devastated.  I was so sad I must have cried forever it seemed.  When I came home to New York, I took the next week off and focused on other aspects of life.  I had a great time.  I went for a long walk at Green Lakes with my friend, Marguerite Dodd.  I had a great time and it was nice to forget all about the aches and pains of the marathon.  I think the marathon takes too much out of me but I want to go to Boston.

Lilly had her dance recital coming up so I focused on taking her to dance and getting some cross training in.  I know I have the speed to get me to Boston….but I needed to go to PT.  I went to PT with my friend, Megan James.  After working her magic, I tried to come back to running.  It was not working.

Somewhere along the way, I forgot about the pains of not being able to run by cross training with my friend, Lauren…and I also had a chance to help crew for her boyfriend.  I had a great time and met some amazing people.  I think it is important to take a step back from something occasionally and focus on other aspects of life.  I was happy to help out and I had a great time…it is amazing…I am realizing you can enjoy life even when you are not running.

I had Lilly last weekend and we went to the mall.  She has been nagging for a boy doll to play marriage with.  I took her to the Disney store and she picked out Flynn Rider.  He was a keeper because he was the least creepy doll.  We have been basking in the Panera food and wandering around the mall.  I think that I have a pretty amazing, special daughter.

Her ballet recital was super cute and she did wonderful.  I know she will want to sign up again.  I have to say little girls running around in tutus are pretty stinkin cute!!!!

oiselle lillyLilly has her new Wee Bird tank from Oiselle.  She loves it and I wore my Bird Machine tank too.  I like that there are children’s shirts, but I wish there were more!!!!  I just think it is adorable to match :)….

I have received a few things from Oiselle that I am in love with <3

1.  I finally got the tool belt roga shorts in the egg shell color and I cannot wait to wear them!

2. I have the rizzo bikini and bottoms in blueberry.

rizzo

3.  I also received the wings out sweatshirt in midnight.  I paired that with the midnight colored layer love tank.  I think it would also look amazing with the yellow tank.

4.  I can’t say enough about the layer love tank in stripes.  I love it!!!!  I wore it last night and didn’t want to take it off.

I am lucky to have such wonderful clothes from Oiselle.  I truly enjoy being a flock member and hope to represent Oiselle again this year.  I hope they let me !!!!!  I am not racing for a while.  I finally had an MRI on my hip.  I am still thinking a lot about it.  The doctor came in and said: “I have good news and I have bad news.”  Imagine what went through my head.

I found out that my hip is fine.  I am still a little concerned about my knee but I am not thinking about the knee at this moment.  I am more concerned about what is going on that is impacting my running.  I found out I have a 5cm cyst that is hitting my hip.  It is on my left hip.  I also have a smaller cyst on my left side.  Then, I have one on my right side that is eventually going to bother my right hip.  I tried to not get overwhelmed with emotion but all I can think is: “What does this mean?”  What does this mean??????

The doctor I talked to recommended I go for an ultrasound.  I am going today to meet with another doctor and hopefully get an ultrasound sooner than later.  She thinks they should remove it because I am rather on the little side and it will continue to bother me.  They will most likely treat it conservatively, but I want to get back to running and I am worried about how long this will take to get better.  I guess I should be happy to run, but I hate the pain that has to come along with it.  I mean, I just hurt all the time now.  I am rather stubborn, so  I am not letting it get to me.

On a good note, I know I will get better and I have had a lot of amazing things happen to me…I am not one to tell but life is pretty fantastic right now.  I think things happen for a reason and I would normally be freaking out about this…but I have been having such great days I barely think about it.  I am almost done with school for the summer.  I cannot wait!  I will certainly miss my students but I would like to rest and enjoy my time.

Have a great day and remember to be thankful for what you have :)

Three Weeks Later

It is almost three weeks since I ran my marathon…I have learned a lot since then. I am glad I was able to complete another marathon, though it was not the time I wanted. Sometimes things happen and we can’t control them, but we can learn from them. I truly appreciate being able to run. I keep thinking about the day I ran my first two miles in a row on a treadmill. I think it is easier to remember that day, rather than the day I completed my first 5k.

I need to appreciate the huge milestones in running. I need to realize I have gone a lot farther than people and be proud of my accomplishments. I truly do hope I get to run the Boston Marathon someday, but maybe this year it just isnt in the cards.

I have had a great deal of trouble getting back into running…I even struggled with making a ten minute mile…but I listened to my body and I just needed rest. I think with marathon training, we put ourselves through so much endurance that we need to stop and just take a break. I am looking forward to some good base runs and long runs, but I was glad to take it easy…

I am feeling a lot better now and I know I will work hard and eventually get my sub 4 marathon on healthy legs.  I have also learned that even though I have to miss some races, life goes on and I can still have a lot of fun.

I have pulled out of:

St. Michael’s Half Marathon, Maryland

Marine Corps Historic Half, Virginia

Pacing the Buffalo Marathon

Run for the Dream Patriot’s Challenge: 8k and Half Marathon in Williamsburg, Virginia…

but I am being smart and I hope I will be more than fine for my upcoming pacing gigs  :)  since I think pacing is my favorite :)

I have had a lot of fun with my students as I wrap up my `12th year of teaching, and I even went to a really nice smores party!!!!!  I am looking forward to being more social now that I am in town for a little while…I think life happens and maybe its a good thing to focus on something other than running….I definitely lack social skills and it will be nice to actually make some friends in the area ..and I will hopefully get to see some out of town friends too!!!!!

and bs good luck to my friend, Melissa Breen, who will be running the buffalo marathon Sunday…. Sorry I can’t run with you !!

Time and patience is the key…happy Friday!!!!!

Cox Providence, Rhode Island Marathon #4 review

“Sometimes nothing said speaks louder than words.”

imageI have

beimageen putting off writing this all day. If I don’t now, I might never. I don’t know where to start or what to say. I wonder sometimes that if we live previous lives, if maybe I was a bad person? I know I sound silly but sometimes I just don’t get life.

I know I should be proud and I did pr..but what happened?  I have been training so hard. I don’t think a lot of people know what it is like to be a full time mom and go train for a marathon.  I get up early, I work full time, I get Lilly ready, and I run all the time. I’m juggling three lives that I love: a mom, a teacher, and a runner.

I run six days a week, one is a long run.  I have had babysitters a lot and have been saving money to work hard at this.  I have speed, but sometimes I don’t have endurance.

Here is what happened:

I tapered these past two weeks. I did my 75-90 minute run last weekend….then I had a fever Monday, so I stayed home from work. I went to practice and did my sharpener….it felt great…6:25 pace- nailed it!

My my ultimate goal was to get a 3:38- enough to get me into Boston…. When the race started, it started late.  There was an accident on the course so we needed to be patient.  We started close to 8:00 am…. It felt great and I was on fire… Every step felt awesome.  I watched my pace and my goal was to bank a little time for the hills and it worked smoothly.  I was on target…. I would go and have a negative split.  I reached the halfway point at my goal.  I know at mile three I was at 23:03.  At mile 6, I was just under 48.  At mile 11, I was at 1:30…. I was on it….mile thirteen I was cruising…. Then by mile 14, something happened… You know when you are running and all of a sudden something happens and your leg feels horrible??? This was me.  I have piriformis and burcitis.  This was much more though.  I kept running but I had to overcompensate.  My ankle throbbed and my calf was on fire… It was like I had turned into jello.  I don’t know what I pulled or did, but my left hip hated me by the end a well. It could be a sciatic nerve too… All I know is that mentally I had my heart in this…. Physically, my body just could not hold up…. I reached mile 18 and the 3:45 pacer caught up. I wanted to cry because I am capable of it…. Every step felt awful.  I think at mile 20, I pushed it a little to try to make up ground but I just hurt too much.

At mile 22, I wanted to cry when the 4:00 pacer went by.  It wasn’t fair.  I could easily run under 4:00.  Instead, I finished in 4:03. I know it is a pr…but I have never trained for a marathon so it doesn’t feel like a pr.  It feels like my body failed and  I ultimately failed.  By the time I finished, my friend Linda was there.  I cried in her arms.  I had it and I wanted it…. But my body couldn’t do it.

Mistakes:  I didn’t really warm up beforehand and my stretching was worthless because we waited around.  I did go fast in the beginning but 8:01 is not too bad for me and I did slow it down and officially could barely run by mile 17, which I clocked a 9:58…. Ouch!

Next steps: I’m trying to go to a doctor but it doesn’t seem to be working.  I went to a bunch of doctors and it’s hard to see a new doctor.  I’ve been told running isn’t good for me and to try A class called pure barre.

Coaching- he probably hates me or thinks I’m a goner.

Emotions:  I don’t know what to say. I had what I wanted and I lost it.  If I didn’t have it I’d be fine and I would have my sub four.  I wonder if I feel better in a few weeks if I should try it again?  I also wonder if I should give up on my dreams and face the thought that running isn’t good for me.  I won’t give up running but it takes it’s toll on me and I need help to get better.  There is a huge part of me that knows I can do this…. But how long will it take?  When can I go after it again? I’m afraid I’ll go out and constantly do marathons now just to bq…. But will it work or will it take all of the running out of me?

I don’t know what to say to people who ask me how I did.  Most people would say my time is good…but my heart was set on a bq.  I didn’t just want it for me.  I wanted it for Lilly. I wanted it for all the single moms out there…I know it seems silly to be fixated on a race…. But it’s Boston and I don’t have much in life.  I’d love to win a unicorn for Lilly…. And I can do this…. But I’m so down now.  How do I move on?  I’ve been smiling all day, but I’m just sad inside….All these miles… All the time training… And to lose it?

i have no idea what to think or say…

Race the Runways #63 and round 2

“Someone has to rock second place,” with bib 1!

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Yesterday, I woke up at dawn to go run the airport imagechallenge… This was my second year participating in Race the Runways in Brunswick, Maine. The airport challenge is a one mile race, followed by a half marathon! ! The start times are great! I just had to get up early to make sure I didn’t forget the pacing signs! I was the 2:15 pacer for Beast Pacing! I love pacing because I usually meet first time half marathoners!!!!

The medal was awesome this year!!!! The propeller even spins! I love the shirts again, though I like the blue and orange one from last year… I wore it this year :)….

I liked the course…. It was nice and flat! I have to admit I’m a hill seeker. I practice on hills and realize a lot of people do not so it is fun to pass on the hills….as a pacer, I felt like this was a great course for a pr…the girls I helped all had a chance to pr and some of the girls were running their first half marathons! This course was not intimidating, though it was very windy…..I am totally coming back next year. I did the half in 1:49 last year and I’m confident that I could pull off a 1:45 on it next year unless the course is changed!  The elevation change throughout only added up to 75 feet..so basically I went over a couple of speed bumps….

As for the mile….. I’m mad at myself for not pushing my pace and again, ending up in second place.  I also came in second last year and finished with a 6:44 time…..the airport challenge took place this year and I think I had a imagegreat shot at winning…. But I do love pacing and it wasn’t about me! Maybe next year!!!  I also had bib number 1!!!! Next year he will give me bib 2 I’m sure hahahaha! Always second! Next year!!!! I won’t eat Girl Scout cookies!!! I also won’t pull my hamstring at the Syracuse half marathon!

The kids had a great .3 mile race! I was excited my daughter had bib 1 along with the other kids…of course she wanted a different number than me… She got a cool shirt and a finisher medal!!! I can’t believe it was free!!!!

Thank you volunteers!!! We couldn’t run without you and thanks for all of the preparation and behind the scene activity…I helped out with a race before…. I don’t know how people do it!!!!!!!

Ill be back and it’s a great race!!!! Put this one on your bucket list!!!!

Syracuse Half Marathon- #62

IcemanimageimageMelissa! Outrun the odds for those who cantimageSam and I image

“There is no point in being grown up if you can’t be childish sometimes. ” – dr who

I am sitting here after one roller coaster of a week. The deck of cards has been stacked against me. It started out with my apartment door. I locked myself out with no shoes or socks on. I didn’t have a phone either. Then I knocked on doors With people who were home. I ended up breaking my door.

image Megan racing for 1:29!

imageSt. Michaels

I was hoping things would get better from there but work did not help. I love my students and I’m happy to help but I’m running out of chairs and I want to do what is best for them…. So work didn’t help. Then, someone used my debit card and took all my money out of my bank. I was grossed out when I found out they used it to subscribe to a porn site. Luckily, I canceled the card and they are going to give me the money back… In a week! I’m glad I have emergency money!!!!   I figured I was done with bad luck.

Then, I broke my armband for my running! I had a race the next day. Okay, now I thought my bad luck was gone!!!!

My friends came from Rhode Island and went to Wegmans for the first time!!! That was fun. I now appreciate my grocery store! I love my $6 dinners!!!

So I couldn’t sleep last night. I tossed and turned and felt like garbage. I freaked out because there was no parking and we finally found parking and missed the group y picture so I was disappointed. I enjoy being a Syracuse Y Runner as much as a Oiselle runner! So I ran into Jen Brady from oiselle and she kicked butt today!!!

A shout out goes to Megan James for crushing her pr by 6 minutes and finishing in 1:29!!!! Wooooowwwwww!!!  That is awesome!

I also want to thank my good friend, Melissa Nassiff, who finally got her 1:49 pr!!!! I’m also glad she was okay and ran more miles!!!!

annndddd drumroll!!!!! Sam! I have to thank Sam!!! You have no idea! Sam has a heart of gold! He came over and helped me with my door Monday night after he finished running… I was concerned about safety and he came right over.  Then, I texted him upset about work this week and I’m glad he helped me through my base Friday! Saturday…. Poor Sam should have changed his number… I text him saying my bank has been hacked and he called me and my road rage disappeared!!!!

Then, he wins the gold star because I was so excited he was going to run with

me and I was going to go under 1:40 today…. I was so excited I thought I could do it!!!!! I did

my best and was so happy to get up the James Street hill….. But then my shin hurt so bad I lost it…. I haven’t felt that before and it worries me… I tried to keep going but it just felt awful….he told me to slow down but I wanted my 1:40…. Sounds awesome and doable…. So I couldn’t do it is the moral…. But I never would have finished if Sam had not been there…. I felt bad and apologized 800 times and I can’t stop thanking him enough! I wanted him to go on but he wouldn’t and he helped me so much… He should be a race pacer and coach!

My favorite part of the ymca program is the incredible people you meet along the way! I could not have finished today if it weren’t for the y runners! Lol and Sam will never read this I bet but I owe him 1.000 thanks! There are not many people Out there who would give up their race time for someone and I was happy to not quit… It was looking a little bleak….he even got me water and Gatorade throughout!!! Best race pacer ever!!  Then at the end I wanted to amputate my right leg and just hop to the finish line, but his encouragement got me to just go and finish!!!! Sam you really need to do race pacing! You rock at it….

so without anymore arguing, I need to visit my schedule… I am still pacing because it is what I love to do…I’m not as gifted as Sam but I’ll try!!!

but I need to be realistic…. If I want Boston I need to take it easy on my

knee and I believe the shin is bothering me because of the knee…. I’ve been dragging my right foot more lately so that most likely bothers the shin…. It is the domino affect…. Soooo I’m dropping out of a half marathon in May….. :( I’m sad to say I will no longer be doing…St. Michael’s but don’t feel sorry for me…. If I cut down the races and work on weights more, I believe I can help my knee… I also need more speed work and the races are killing it!!!!

So for now, this will just have to be a great memory and not something to look forward to! As for Syracuse, I liked the course better last year because they added too

many hills and potholes!

oh before I go, shout out to the “iceman” for his 1:23 today… Love the hat!!! Go Jeff Faherty!!!

The moral of today is that it wasn’t my day… But it was for everyone I know. I am proud of them and thankful for all of them! Today was a race, I never once felt alone…. Thank you y runners, coach Yoda “KC” and thank you to Sam!

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