I Did It! First 10k In The Books….

1:34:36

That was my time for the Inaugural Star Wars – Dark Side 10k at Walt Disney World. This was also my personal first 10k and one that I had been feeling completely unprepared for. It wasn’t necessarily pretty and it was HOT and muggy as is the current climate of Florida. But I started, I finished, and I earned that Tie Fighter medal. I was 745 in my division, 3969 in my gender with 6921 women running and 12172 runners completing the race.

I’ll take it.

Not only will I take it, I have another 5k coming up in June to keep me motivated and not sitting on my butt in the hot and humid summer sun.

I have also started taking full advantage of my YMCA membership and getting into the gym three times a week during lunch breaks to cross-train. Generally legs and lower back one day, light cardio the next and arms and upper body/abs the third. All with a 10 minute attack on the elliptical to get heart rate up.

I’ve seen a lot of offers lately on my Facebook feed for friends that are peddling Plexus and Shakeology. Now, don’t get me wrong – I have P90X and T25 in my arsenal at home for the days where I might want to get something a little extra in (which hasn’t happened in quite come time because, well, LIFE and there are so many things I want to do with my time at home like my dolls and new capital ventures in the works) I’ve even been seeing OrangeTheory quite a bit lately as well and know that will be close to my office soon. But thinking that this way works for my schedule, budget and everything in between.

Now to see what progress I can make in the next year.

6 Weeks and Counting…

End of January I was hit with an upper respiratory infection. Needless to say, wasn’t able to run for a while. Got to again and knew I was running out of time (literally) when not only was my house hit with something, but I for the first time in my life was hit with the flu followed by what can only be walking pneumonia. I’ve gone almost a month without being able to REALLY train for the 10k coming up in April.

Regardless, I will complete it. Even if I have to walk the whole damn thing, I will pound that pavement until I make it mine. Time is irrelevant. I knew a while back that I would be unlikely to maintain a pace to which I was normally accustomed for shorter races. You are going to see this woman cross that finish line and earn that tie-fighter medal!

Training will commence this week. I’m still coughing occasionally and when I do it’s productive, though still pretty deep so I know I need to pace myself.

It’s Amazing What A Day Makes….

I ran yesterday. For the first time in over a month, I ran without pain or discomfort!

I tried out my new orthotics yesterday with the intention of only running a mile at the most. I didnt wnat to overdo it and wasn’t sure how running in the orthotics would feel, or how well they would work. It took a bit to get used to the additional support and admittedly felt a little weird to start. Then I realized about a half mile in I was alright. NO pain. NO stress or soreness. I ran a mile. Then I decided to go farther.

I ran two.

The woman who couldn’t even run a mile a month ago, after having completed 5k’s and 4-milers, ran 2 miles pain free and could likely have done more mileage. I opted not to so that I wasn’t overdoing it. I spent last night brainstorming on a running costume for the Dark Side Weekend 10k.

Today, I woke up a little sore and happily so. I put on my shoes and ran another mile.

It is utterly amazing to me how much my mood has improved and how excited I am now that I can and will be abe to run again and continue to participate in races. Physical therapy is coming on Tuesday and I’m looking forward to it. Anything that will not only help me regain running, but lead towards my goals to loose weight and get back to where I’m physically happy with myself is exciting.

Cross training resumes tomorrow.

Imbolc – The Coming of the Light

Today marks the Festival of St. Brigid, otherwise known as Imbolc – which is the celebration of the home and the coming of the light. In pagan terms, it signifies the midway point of winter and the coming of spring. I’ve decided to use this month – and it’s extra day – to institute some positive changes in my lifestyle. Brigid has also always been a Goddess to whom I’ve always felt a strong pull and connection and revisiting my internal draws is part of that journey. I’ve wandered away from researching, learning and discovering things on a spiritual level the last five years and that’s something I have to correct. She, along with Hecate and Cerridwen, make up my three guides.

As anyone who may have followed my blog may know, I’ve had issues recently with running and problems with my legs. I still don’t know officially what is going on, but I have seen a sport medicine doc and have to acquire some plastazote orthotics for my shoes, as well as some physical therapy to being this Friday. I’m hoping that those two things combined will allow me to complete my road to 10K in April. This is one of my short-term goals.

Today I also start with being positive. There is a LOT going on at home right now, and I want to spread happiness, joy and love to those I hold dear to me. Money is an issue, and even with taxes coming up there are plenty of negative decisions I have made throughout the last three years that I need to correct. It won’t be an easy road, but in spite of it I am determined to regain the upbeat, confident and determined woman I am and have been. She’s been hiding, you see, and I’m tired of being something I’m not. It’s not fair to my family, but also not fair to my self and is a disservice towards the goals and progress I intend to make.

So, for the next 29 days, I endeavor to find things daily that make me smile, that make my heart sing and share them with my family. I endeavor to document those things and hold them dear, as future reminders of where I’ve been and where I’ve come from. I endeavor to improve my health with the coming light and take advantage of the cycles that are offered to me to learn, to grow, to improve and to share of myself with those that I deem worthy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cheating at Races…

I saw this blog post this morning from Lani Tashima who is a writer for MousePlanet and I couldn’t agree with her more. Now, I am nowhere near a level where I would ever have to be concerned with being cheated out of an age group win – but as someone who diligently pays for her races and trains for them, those that do not really rub me the wrong way. I know the first race I ever ran, when I went onto Marathofoto to look at my pics I realized someone else also had my bib number. Now, how they got it I have NO clue unless they just guessed, but it was still an annoyance.

We all know cheating, in any environment, is a bad thing. We’re (hopefully) taught it at an early age. When you cheat on a race, regardless whether it’s a small local event or a large production like the runDisney races, you are hurting not only everyone that pays to run that race, but everyone that helped to ensure that the race was something that could even exist AND you make future races all the more difficult to participate in, which is really counterproductive.

Now, I wish I could say I get it because, particularly in the case of runDisney races, they are expensive. A 5k is generally going to run you about $65 – $75 and the challenges are usually a couple of hundred dollars and that’s before you factor in hotel stay, transportation, etc. Local 5k’s in my area, by comparison are usually $25 -$40 with little to no transportation and obviously no need to lodging to factor in. But runDisney races are expensive in part because they do provide finisher medals for all and (usually) those medals are solid quality items that simply because they are Disneyana can become collectors items. This is in addition to the event shirt that is provided with registration, AMPLE amounts of post race refreshments (which cheese dip that is not purchasable anywhere else and is apparently to die for) and race specific merchandise that is available for an additional charge that has to be designed, created and stocked. Beyond that though there is the traditional Disney spin on things; on route entertainment, plenty of water/rest stations, medical staff on site and on the routes themselves (not all races provide this!) plus opportunities that are intrinsically Disney with character meet-and-greets before, during and after the races and a tremendous amount of organization for not only the races themselves, but logistically pre, during and post race. Even the Expos that they provide are generally larger events unto themselves and chocked full of vendors and training and information.

But here’s the thing, just like anything else that someone loves to do, they are going to be alright spending money on that thing. For some it’s crafts, others it’s dolls, for some it’s even Christmas decorations. For some of us, we ENJOY the races, even when we despise the training, and there for we plan and save and decide which ones we want to do and invest not only in the race, but in our own motivation, determination and enjoyment of the experience.

When someone cheats – either transfers/sells/buys a bib when that is not allowed, or has a sub racer run for them, or outright just copies a bib from one posted online – they are hurting everyone. They might feel that they are sticking it to Disney, or the race promoter or whomever. They might feel that they are getting away with something taboo. They might just be an ass who simply doesn’t care. But they forget that they are hurting the people who want to invest in this sport and themselves. They are hurting the person who decided to start running in order to improve themselves, their health, loose weight, help out an existing medical condition, or otherwise celebrate something that they have overcome. They hurt the kids that have goals and dreams to accomplish something. Because if they continue to do this, then the races get more and more expensive, there is less and less provided and those that normally could have participated have to opt out.

Basically, if you cheat when it comes to running, then I have no sympathy for you and truly feel you suck. I worked hard to meet the goals I’ve met so far and to work towards the ones I have set for myself and I will not allow others to ruin the opportunity for me , or anyone else who is TRULY working and investing in themselves, to accomplish them. This is the feeling when you know you’ve worked for it, tackled it and overcame it. This is what you are actually robbing people of and that, my friends, is just despicable.

 

 

Resolution

I do not write as often as I want to or should. As I’ve mentioned before, my daily schedule is pretty chock full of things to do and mundane day-to-day tasks to tend to. I’m changing that with this post. I want to blog about my business. Yes. Because blogging about my business is a smart thing to do – it’s literally free advertising and it’s a great way to share the art that I find so much joy and relaxation in doing. But I also want to blog about the two other things in my life that take up what there is of my free time – running and Disney (and combined there is runDisney!)

This week I start to train for my first 10k coming up in January. Between now and then I’m certain to run at least a few official 5ks and I’ll recap those. I want to write about my experiences in training, the joys and heartaches, the progress and set backs and yes, I know there are plenty of blogs about the running lifestyle. But I’m a late thirtysomething who just recently truly discovered (and subsequently lost due to the opressive Florida humidity) the joy of running and I want to help inspire others to do the same.

I want to write about Disney because, yes, though there are plenty of other Disney bloggers out there, me and my family regularly take day and weekend trips to the Happiest Place on Earth and I almost always run into someone in the parks to whom we’re able to give some sort of information that they either didnt know or else were able to assist them in saving some money.

 

I also have grandiose ideas about costumes I want to do for various running events. All this in addition to the various things I want to do with my dolls throughout the next year. And maybe even some family/personal growth stuff too along the way.

Regardless, I want to get at least one post up a week, and preferably one a day if manageable.

Ready to take the journey with me?

 

Small steps…

Small steps lead to great things. I have fought continuously with various aspect of myself for years. Mainly related to my weight and subjectively my insecurities. I’m not obese – though I would be considered overweight medically and am on the curvy/fluffy side.

 

One of the things I’ve realized recently is that I’m trying to attack things like I did in my 20’s. I’m not 20-something anymore. I work a full time job, I balance work with my children and family and keeping up a somewhat respectable home and then my hobbies. My signifigant other works an opposing shift and has an extremely high stress job thats also dangerous. I cant just tackle something full boar and expect it to work like it would have over a decade ago or more!

My body has done amazing things. I have given birth to two marvelous children naturally and ten years apart no less. I have known love, passion, sadness, excitement, joy, silliness, happiness, depression, anxiety, anger and a whole slew of other emotions and states of emotional security. I wrestle with anxiety every day on top of my insecurities and it’s infuriating.

But I have a choice – I can sit back and do nothing and accept things as they are – and that IS something I need to do to a degree. I have to find happiness and contentment as I AM with goals for where I want to be else I become a self defeating prophecy. Or I change things differently now that I’m older, more tired and busier – I can focus on making SMALL changes over a period of time wwith accessible timelines.

First, I have decided to reduce caffeine and increase water. For the rest of this week I’m going to just enjoy myself. Starting Saturday I will not have any caffeine – soda, coffee or tea, until I’ve had at least three glasses of water. Being that right now I’m barely drinking two a day that SHOULD be an obtainable goal. And I need to do this for a least a month before I make any OTHER changes.