Race Recap: Hoosier Half

Hoosier Race Recap

First of all, I have to say Thanks to Hoosier Half for the free race entry.  In exchange for the entry, I agreed to mention the event on my social media platforms  and write about my race experience on this blog.  

This was my second time running the Bloomington, Indiana event.  (Any IU fans or alums out there??)  Back in 2013 I set out to run 13 half marathons (13.1!) in 2013.  The Hoosier Half was one of the events I did that year.  So having done it before, I knew there would be hills.  I was a little anxious with this hilly event being my first half marathon of the year.  I just haven’t been performing at the half marathon distance like I like to (I’ve been a sub-2:00 half marathoner for several years until a couple halfs last fall when I went into the 2:05~2:10 finish time).  Given that, the hills, and some injury and allergy/asthma issues earlier this year, I didn’t really know what to expect on Saturday.  So much so that I told my husband and son, who had gone to Bloomington with me (we stayed overnight even though it’s easily drivable for us!) not to meet me at the finish line.  I just didn’t want the pressure that they were waiting for me if I decided to walk halfway through (and walk I did!)!  Plus, it was unseasonably cold!!!  31  at the start, feeling like 22.  Yikes!  

We went down Friday evening and stopped at Chicago’s Pizza on the way.  I’m not a typical pasta girl the night before an event.  (I don’t really get into the “carb-loading” thing.)  I usually like to have grilled chicken and will add bread or a baked potato, but that’s the extent of differing from my normal eating.  The grilled chicken sandwich with a little buffalo sauce on the side worked just fine.  IU1

We arrived in Bloomington in time to pick up my packet and then stay at the Hampton, the host hotel.  They said it was “within walking distance”, but it was about a mile away, and given the cold temps my husband was nice enough to plan to get up early and drive me to the start line.  

 

After a less than stellar night’s rest (oh well, that happens sometimes!), I got up early enough for my pre-race routine (my normal morning routine actually) to stretch, read my devotions, and have my Energize.  

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Like I said, it was cold at the start, and there was some wind to deal with, but the sun was nice, and with a couple of layers on top, I decided I dressed correctly for the race.  

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I ran with the 2:00 pace group for the first 3 miles, but all the memories of hills were coming back to me, and I decided around mile 5 that I was just going to #runmyrace.  This has been my theme this year, and I decided it was time to live by it.  I started walking the hills.  I walked them briskly but also recovered a bit and then ran the downhills and flats.  This worked for the entire rest of the race.  It finished uphill, and I finished in 2:15:43.  It was my slowest half marathon since 1999, but that’s okay.  

 

I was kinda kicking myself for having told my husband and son not to meet me at the finish line, because I had to walk back to the hotel (you know that mile I mentioned?  AND it had a hill to climb AND it was chilly!).  

 

I got a hot shower then we went downtown Bloomington to eat and explore the campus.  My husband graduated from law school there, and my counseling degree is from IU, so we always enjoy the opportunity to visit campus.  Kent likes to show Ethan around.  (I think he secretly hopes he’ll go to IU!)  IU9

 

 

It was a nice weekend, and at the end of it all, I’m reminded how grateful I am for a supportive family, the opportunity to run, and to be a Hoosier.

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Tell me…

Did you race this weekend? How was it?

Favorite college campus? 

 

Why You Should Trust the Process

trust the process

This Saturday I’ll be running the first of 3 spring half marathons.  Saturday is the Hoosier Half in Bloomington.  The next one will be the Indy Mini (If you’re an Indiana resident and a runner, you’re sorta obligated to this one, right??), and I’ll wrap up my spring with the Michelob Ultra half marathon in Chicago.  (I’m running this one with Team Momentum, first time I’ve done a fundraiser run. More on this in an upcoming post!)

 

Today I want to take some time and talk about trusting the process.  I’m sure you’ve heard the quote.  Sometimes it can be a cop out, “well it’ll take time; just keep on keeping on”.  But you want results, right???  How long is this “process” going to take??  What do I do in the ‘waiting’?

You can’t trust a process you don’t even know.  You still need to identify your goals and how you’re going to get there.  It may be a training plan for a 5K or half marathon.  It could be some changes to your eating habits to lose weight or have more energy.  It could be a schedule change.  You may need a mindset shift.  Maybe you need to find a Bible study to follow.  

 

Just as the saying goes “April showers bring May flowers” so we have to do the work and spend the time to get the results.  

If you want to run a race, whatever distance it may be, you can’t just one day get up and go do it without having done at least a little training.  I’ve run over 50 half marathons and more than a dozen marathons, but every time I start a new training plan and am running 7 or 8 miles, I think “how am I going to be ready to run 13 or 26?!?!”  Well, I’m not ready on day 1 of training but by the 10th, 12th week, I’ve built up my mileage, and I’m ready to go.  

When you decide it’s time to make some changes in your nutrition, the first day you cut out your daily Coke or iced tea, you won’t lose 5 pounds.  But over time and replacing that coke with water every day for a week, two, or three, you will begin to notice a change in your body.  

The first day you set your alarm to get up early to read your devotions, you may want to hit the snooze and put off this new routine until tomorrow.  But once you get up Monday and then again on Tuesday and again on Wednesday and spend 10 minutes of quiet time, you’ll realize that these few extra minutes get you focused for the day.  You’ll face the day with peace and confidence.  

But all these changes don’t just happen.  The results don’t magically come as soon as you do something.  It takes time.  Time to figure out what changes YOU need to make (not what your best friend is doing).  Time for your body and lifestyle and mindset to respond.  

But just as these April showers bring forth beautiful May flowers, those changes you start making today will have results if you stick with it and trust the process.  

 

Tell me….

Are you having to trust the process in some area of your life?  If so, what is it?  

Do you have any tips on how to trust the process?   

How To View Your Setback as an Opportunity

SETBACK

Recently I was sidelined from my running routine. A freakish pain happened in my big toe during a Saturday training run that forced me to walk the last mile of the run and led to a couple of weeks on the sidelines, walking and riding my trainer.  

Should’ve been no big deal. Thankful nothing like a stress fracture. A week or two of not running. How bad can that be? Well, ask any “runner”, and any day you’re told you CAN’T run is a bad day. And for someone who has struggled with tying her self-worth to how much she’s running and working out, this is very difficult.  I mean, first question people always ask me when they see me is “You run this morning?”  Or when I see family it’s, “You still running?  What big race do you have coming up?”  My identity is tied to my running.  

And so back to what do you do when you have a setback or encounter a roadblock? The first thing is we quickly revert to old thoughts and habits. At least I know I do. In this case, I was finding myself gravitating towards new weight loss schemes and quick fixes. I was fighting the urge to compare and let negative self-talk enter my mind.

BUT, I had to recognize what was going on. When I start down that path that only leads to destruction of all that God has done in my life, I pause, and remember I’m supposed to turn north! I had to be thankful for what I had.  I had to be thankful that I could still move everyday. I was able to lift some heavy weight and I tore it up on my trainer doing intervals.  I walked.  I surrounded myself with a community of women for 40 Days of Faith and Fitness.

In the end, maybe this wasn’t a setback or a roadblock. Maybe this was an opportunity to live out my verse of the year “throw off everything that hinders and run…” I had some time to take inventory and identify some of the hindrances I need to get rid of to run the race.

 

Do you feel like you’re facing a setback or a roadblock today?  May I suggest that it could be an opportunity?  

  • Is there a lesson to be learned?  
    • For me, I still need to learn that my identity and my worth has nothing to do with what my physical body does or how it looks.  
  • Do you need to make a change in your life?
    • I’m learning more and more about exercise and its affects on me as a “40-something”.  This gave me some time to explore some different ways to exercise.  
  • Do your priorities need to be adjusted?
    • In times like these, I’m reminded how “things”, whether they are activities or possessions, to do lists or relationships, they can become idols in my life that takes my focus off of the One who matters most.

 

Tell me about a time you’ve had a setback that proved to be an opportunity.

When it comes to sports, do you prefer to be on the sidelines cheering or would you rather be out there playing?

Training Tips To Get At Those Goals

 

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It’s the end of January.  How are you doing with your January 1st goals?  What about those resolutions? It’s not too late.  Don’t throw in the towel!  

If you’ve signed up for a spring race, it’s likely time to get started on some focused training.  

If you’ve had trouble with motivation given the cold weather and recent snows, that’s okay.  The weather is giving you a break.  Take advantage of it!  

 

I’ve got some tips to get you going!

 

  1. Make a schedule.  Plan your week.  When are you going to run?  How far?  What about cross training?  What workout DVD are you going to do?  Rest days?  Put them on the calendar.  You’re more likely to stick with it.  
  2. If you don’t know where to start, find a plan.  If it’s running, Runner’s World has some good links to training plans.  If you’ve signed up for a race, the race’s website is likely to have some links to training plans.  Do you have “runner friends”? Reach out to them.  Do you like DVDs?  I can hook you up with a good workout.  Do you have a gym membership?  Check out their class schedule.  
  3. Get a friend.  Invite someone to meet you at the gym.  Get together at your house and put a DVD in and get moving.  Meet up with a running group.   I can get you connected!  Take the dog for a walk.  Dance with the kids.   
  4. Decide on your goals.  Finish?  Set a PR?  Lose weight?  Get off the couch?  Unwind?  Fresh air?  Set the goal and then do whatever it takes to reach it.  

 

Still struggling?  I’m here to help!  Email me and let’s get moving!  

 

Tell me…

What goals are you working towards right now?  

What tips do you have to get at your goals?

Tips to Survive the Cold and Snow

winter

Winter has finally arrived in Shelbyville, Indiana.  Last Thursday, I was out on my bike with a friend, but since then we had rain that went to snow that went to ice that went back to some snow, high winds, and very cold temperatures.  It’s resulted in school closures and delays.  I was so hoping that winter had decided to skip us this year, but I guess that’s not the case.  

That’s okay.  Snow, ice, and cold may cancel school, but it doesn’t have to cancel our plans for living a healthy lifestyle.  Following are some tips to keep you safe and warm and full of a sunny spirit.  

  1. Attitude – In all things, we need to be grateful.  The beauty of the snow.  Spending an unexpected day home with the kiddos.  An excuse to stay home.
  2. The right gear – Layers!  Yes, there are definitely fabrics that are windproof, waterproof, etc.  And some of those come in very handy and can be necessary on extremely cold days.  But the bottom line is to layer up.  Wear a base layer that will wick away the sweat and then layer over with something that is preferably wind and waterproof.  cold
  3. Cover all the extremities – Hands, feet, ears, head.  You may need 2 pair of gloves and socks if you don’t have any heavy duty wool, especially if you’ll be outside very long.  You may need a facemask.  There are some special ones that will cover your mouth and nose but still have tiny holes in that area so you can still breathe!  (That’s pretty important!)
  4. Drink hot stuff!  I love my coffee every morning, but on cold wintery days it becomes even more of an essential.  And what about an evening cup of hot tea?  Before you go out, warm up with something hot and have something hot when you come in.  This will get right to your core and get you warming up quickly.
  5. Enjoy a hot shower or bath – This may warm your body, but it can also be relaxing and put your mind at ease if you’ve been tensed up driving on icy roads.  
  6. Moisturize – I don’t know about yours, but my skin gets so dry in the winter.  My hands are cracking.  I love Bass Farms lotions and especially their Triple B Hydrating Cream for extremely dry skin.  
  7. Be flexible with your exercise plan – There’s a reason the racing season doesn’t ramp up until April or May.  January and February can be hard to get those long runs in.  There will be time to up your mileage.
  8. Split up your workouts – If 6 miles was on your schedule, but it’s just way too cold or the snow and ice are making it difficult, maybe do 3 miles inside and 3 outside. Or do a short run in the morning and another at lunch or in the afternoon.  
  9. Workout inside – Maybe hit the weights.  Ride your trainer.  Surely you can survive a couple miles on the treadmill???  When I’m inside on a bike or treadmill, I use that time to do intervals.  It keeps me focused and gives me some variety and makes the time go faster.  And we know intervals are great for stoking that metabolism! 
  10. Play – For Heaven’s sake, if you have snow, go play in it!!!  Be a kid!  I see snow in the forecast, and my reaction is “ugh”.  My son sees snow in the forecast, and he’s whooping and hollering!  It brings us back to the first tip…..our attitude!  

Do you like winter?  How are the winters where you live?  How do you handle winter weather?

Please note:  My email is going out tomorrow only to those who have signed up!  If winter has gotten you down, and you need a jump start, you need to get my email!  I have a free opportunity coming up that will provide encouragement and a supportive community of women!  Get signed up today!

2015 Summary, 2016 Plans

2016

I’m not a huge fan of setting goals, especially as it relates to numbers.  I know myself, and I can get too caught up in all that and only think of the number or end result and not the process.  

Having said that, I do like to look back over my year and count up miles and take stock of some of my accomplishments.  I also look ahead at some things I’ll target in the coming year.  Following is a look back at my 2015 and what’s on tap for 2016.  

The biggest surprise and blessing of 2015 was taking a step in the direction of sharing my passion to empower women to be fit and free.  (I’ll blog much more on this in a week or two when I share my heart about how this happened and what I’m doing to pay it forward.)

Here’s how my 2015 added up:  

 

Plans for 2016:

What about you?  How did 2015 turn out?  Go ahead, brag a little about yourself!  What’s on tap for 2016?  I want to know so I can cheer you on!

Happy New Year! What’s Your Word?

new year

Last year was the first time I came up with my word for the year.  It seems that this is pretty common.  People will have a word or phrase that sets their intention or focus for the year.  

I could definitely look back and see themes in my life over the years.  Certain years, I could probably identify by a word or phrase.  

But last year I got intentional with this idea of a word myself.  After some reflection and prayer and searching scripture, I found my word for 2015.  Beneficial.  This would be my word and my verse would be I Corinthians 10:23, “Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial”.  

beneficial

Not only would this be in regards to what I put INTO my mouth but this would also have an impact on what came OUT of my mouth, my words and even my actions.  While I was not perfect (just ask my family!  lol!), I had a focus.  I had an intention.  I had something by which to measure my words, my actions, the foods I chose, my schedule, etc.  Everything came back to this one word and whether or not it was beneficial for me, for my family, for those around me.  I’ve kept the word and verse on a notecard where I can see it, pray it, reflect on it every day of 2015.  

 

 

Now it’s time for my word for 2016.  I’ve been thinking about this and reflecting for the last few weeks.  I would jot down words as one came to me.  I’d read a scripture that jumped out at me.  I wrote it down and the word associated with it.  Finally I decided on my word.  It was something I kept coming back to and a verse that has kept coming up.  It’s how It’s the word I feel the Lord has laid on my heart and intended for me this year…..

 

Run.  loverun

 

This is so much more than the physical activity I love to do.  (If you know me at all or just know me through social media, you know I’m a runner!)  Even though I do identify myself as a #runner, #runnermom……this has little to do with my exercise of choice.  Sure I have some fitness goals.  I want to get my half marathon time back under 2 hours (my fall halfs took me a few minutes over that 😦

But this is about Hebrews 12:1.  hebrews12-1

It’s about “laying aside the weight and sin” which tells me to let go of the things that distract and hold me back.  And then “run with endurance the race set before us” which is telling me to run MY race.  Basically, I want to keep my head down and GO in the direction He’s leading.  Additionally I want to run this race like it tells me to in I Corinthians 9:24 in a way to obtain the prize.  I want to RUN where He’s taking me with my best efforts, with His strength.  

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So in 2016 I’m running MY race.  The race HE has set before me.  (Keeping my eyes on my own paper!)  At the end of 2016, I want to look back and know that I trained hard and ran wherever He told me to go and finished strong.

I’d love to hear from you!  What’s your word for 2016 and why?