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The Return of Runner Girl?

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Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Return of Runner Girl?

That's what I'd like to think... :-)


Especially before we had kids, Dave and I enjoyed long-distance running.


Obviously, our training dwindled some after the kids arrived, and between Dave and me and our double-jogging stroller, we'd always managed 1-2 races per year even after the kids were born.  Then we hit a lazy streak in Nebraska, Dave's job was really busy, the weather was a pain-in-the-rear (I hate running in the wind!), and Dave had several medical issues that all combined to keep us from do any more working out than necessary.

After a couple years of lollygagging, I took the plunge and signed up for my first running race since June 2009.

Which race?  No, of course I don't go easy and sign up for a 5K.  Here is the race I registered for.


I think I tend to gravitate towards the more scenic races.  Check out the course map!  Isn't it beautiful???  I'm excited to get to see sunrise over those bridges!


So part of my motivation for this is to to get fit again.  Not sure if it was stress, laziness, just plain overeating or what, I'm currently about 15-20 lbs. heavier than when I came home from my deployment in April 2009.  I need a goal, and a plan to reach that goal.

Hence signing up for a 15K race right off the bat.  This spring I'd like to do a 1/2 marathon, I'll wait to sign up until we see whether I can do this 15K okay.

First off, I was in desperate need of new running shoes.  I was in the same old Brooks shoes I'd had since Spring 2009.  Spare me the lectures, I know one should be replace them every 500 miles or so.  So with one of the gift cards I'd received for Christmas (thanks Mom and Dad Vollmer!), I got a nice pair of trail running shoes.  I prefer trail running shoes for the broader, thicker soles.

From 2011 01 06 Navarre Beach Bridge Run

I started my "training" in earnest this week, which meant increasing how many miles I run each week.  Normally I do three 5K runs per week, but now I need to do at least 4 runs per week, and at least 15 miles total per week, slowly increasing that up to about 20 miles per week.  I'd like to do 5 runs per week but real life might make that a less-realistic goal.  Included in that is one "long run", which needs to increase by 1 to 1.5 miles per week, hopefully I can do that on Fridays.

Our neighborhood is expansive enough I can plan lots of great routes or any length I need!

This past week I did a 5 mile run across the Navarre Beach Bridge, so I could get ready for the bridges in the race.  Check out these magnificent views during my run!

From 2011 01 06 Navarre Beach Bridge Run
From 2011 01 06 Navarre Beach Bridge Run
There was a hill on my most-common running route in Nebraska.  Westbound Schneekloth Rd. between Spring Blvd. and 34th St. (past the back of the school).  I called it "Heartbreak Hill" since the elevation gain is similar to the "Heartbreak Hill" in the Boston Marathon.  This bridge here is only 55 feet elevation (not the 85 feet in NE).  I'll take this hill (and the view) over the one I had in Nebraska, ha ha!
From 2011 01 06 Navarre Beach Bridge Run

Unfortunately, after that 5 mile run last Thursday (which felt great at the time), my knees were REALLY REALLY sore for 2 days.  I could barely walk on Friday!  Not sure if it's old age or the extra weight I'm carrying around, but I hope this isn't a permanent issue or else long distance runs won't last very long in my future.

Also, I've noticed over the years that my legs, knees and hips are now more sensitive to the cant of the road.  My neighborhood doesn't have sidewalks, so I'm on the far left or right edges of the road surfaces, and if there's a slope for too long, I feel it in the arches of my feet and in my hips.

Here's hoping I stick to this fitness plan.

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