Wednesday, February 27, 2019

WWU - It's Coming Together!

My plan (that was delayed for a few months thanks to tearing my calf muscle on my second workout) of becoming a stronger runner by going back to my roots and working out with BCS Fitness has finally started to come into play.  And when I say stronger runner, you know I don't have super specific goals...but I would like to be able to run a few miles without stopping like I used to back in 2009/2010.

Before my ankle injury, and subsequent surgery.

Before my hamstring injury, which took a long time to heal.

Before my running/race anxiety got so bad.

Before I knew better - I just kind of ran.  It was fun.  It was a challenge.  And I liked it.

With that said, but with no real timeline, Jeff and I set out for our standard two miles with intervals run on Thursday morning.  It was cold and windy and started sprinkling as soon as we began, so we decided to just run one loop and head back home - hey, we aren't training for anything, so we don't have to run in crummy weather.  With that in mind and knowing we'd be finished in just over half a mile, I told Jeff that I wanted to try and run the entire way without stopping.

So we ran, and even though we both were like Pavlov's dog when the first alert sounded - that beep means walk to our brains - we kept running.  We rounded the loop, the rain had lightened up, and I was feeling good, so I said I wanted to keep going.  And we did...all the way to one mile!  My first mile without stopping in years.  It felt great and I could have kept going, but decided to hold off on that and just enjoy the success of that mile.

The next time I ran was on Sunday thanks to - wait for it - more rain on Friday and Saturday.  Diane was off running another half marathon, so Jeff and I planned to run a mile doing intervals as a warm up, and then run without intervals after that.  Well, best-laid plans...we started off running and hey guess what was making an appearance?  If you guessed running anxiety, gold star to you.  When we were close to hitting our first mile, I told Jeff what was going on, so we ended up just running intervals for the entire run.  I did shake that feeling around mile 2, but we didn't change the plan at that point and finished with 3.5 miles for the day.

We did run three light post to light post sprints at the end, which was fun, so I'm glad the run ended on that note.

Yesterday, we ran in our neighborhood again - with Diane this time - and we ran the first mile doing intervals, then the second mile straight through.  And afterward, we ran a few sprints.  No anxieties, just a normal run.

So, what is the deal with me?  Why did I start to freak out on Sunday's run?  I don't have an answer for that, but for the time being, I think I will limit my running without intervals to my weekday runs.  I can build on that, and maybe I'll get comfortable enough that doing the same thing in a different location won't cause so much consternation.  At least I know I can run a mile without stopping, so that's a win in my book!

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Speaking of last Sunday's run, I did my usual post-run clothing change, only instead of my usual sweatpants, I wore the softest pair of lounge joggers - holy moly, they were comfortable...and soft.  I made Karen and Cary feel them, that's how soft they were.  They looked good on, plus they provided me with a little ego boost, as the size I was wearing was a little big - and no, I'm not really the next size down, the joggers are just generously cut.  Tommy John sent them to me at no charge; I didn't realize that I'd be getting some size flattery along with a cute pair of joggers - thanks, Tommy John!

20 comments:

  1. Hey Shelley. Long time stalker here. Just wanted to comment on the anxiety issue. I suffer from it, not when I run but at different times. Something I have learned is to focus on something else. If your focus is on your feelings it only gets worse. I'm a person of faith, so I pray. When I first started running, when I was having a difficult time, I would pray for others. Other ideas, maybe sing a song, recite poetry.

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    1. Hi Brenda, thanks for coming out of stalkerdom - I appreciate your advice and empathy. Finding a different focus is an excellent idea...I had my music playing but it wasn't loud; plus I should make a different playlist of songs that I can't help but sing along to. Good idea! :)

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  2. I like Brenda's ideas for dealing with anxiety seems like a lot of us suffer from it.

    Congrats on running a whole mile w/o stopping that is awesome and I really admire you for being able to do it. I'm just a "walker" now days, and right now my big goal is getting back to being able to walk 5 days in a row without pain.

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    1. Hey, walking is great - don't say "just" a walker! I hope you are able to do it without pain...that sure can take the fun out of exercise.

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  3. I read this and here's where I see a difference. The first time you ran the mile, you just did it without even really thinking about it. The second time you tried, I think you put expectations on yourself - you had to do it - you had to beat your time - for example. The fear of not meeting/exceeding created the anxiety. I do hope you can work this out. It's really wonderful to see you getting results from all your hard work!

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    1. I agree, knowing it was coming definitely brought on the anxiety. But come on, one of these days I'd like to run a 5K w/o intervals, and I'll know that is coming...I have to figure out how to calm down without the aid of pharmaceuticals (LOL, can you imagine running after taking a Xanax "why is that lady running in slo mo?").

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  4. I used to get terrible race anxiety. I read once somewhere that it happens because it means you care about what you're doing and the outcome--that it means a lot to you. Just knowing that helped me a ton. I'm still having trouble accepting where I'm at with running right now but I also have a goal of never being upset about an outcome of a race. It really is all about fun and that beer at the finish line! That philosophy has helped me a lot.

    And now I smell a topic for a blog post...

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    1. Interesting - yes, I guess I do care if I succeed at running w/o stopping, but enough to cause anxiety? Ugh. Frustrating.

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  5. I had to check out those lounge joggers--they look great, but holy moly, they are above my price grade! Its back to Walmart for me. I'm excited that you ran a mile without stopping. I'm back to upping my walking time. No bears in winter hopefully!

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    1. I agree, the price of the joggers is higher than what I usually spend - and I did get these for free, so there's that - but several of my running buddies wear Lululemon and they fall right along that price point. I'm interested to see if these last and don't pill because if they still look great after a few months of wear and washing, I might have to put another pair on my shopping list!

      Glad you are walking and YES I SURE HOPE THE BEARS ARE HIBERNATING!!

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    2. I got a pair of suuuuper soft joggers from JC Penney - very reasonably priced and did I mention? suuuuuper soft! :)

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  6. Great job on the run. Its nice to your hard work paying off, isn't it?

    Why is it so many of us suffer with anxiety and depression?

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    1. Thanks! And honestly, if I had the answer to your question, I'd be shouting it from the rooftops.

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  7. Congrats on running a mile without stopping!!!! That right there is proof that you're a stronger runner! :)

    I don't have anything to add about the anxiety stuff that others haven't already said, but I hope you can figure it out. I do love the idea of a sing-along playlist! I know the words to all my running songs, and many also lend themselves to air-drumming. It's hard not to have fun with that :)

    LOL I hear you on the Pavlov's dog thing with the interval beeps. I ran with a friend last night and she needed to walk sooner than the beep, and wouldn't you know when my watch buzzed (to actually start walking) I started running again for a few seconds. I'm allowed to start running straight through without intervals next week (per my "return to running" plan from my physical therapist), which is a GOOD thing, but man am I going to miss those walk intervals!

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    1. Glad you are getting the all clear to return to full on running, but hey - do what you like, and if intervals make you run happy, then go for it!

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    2. I think I will. The plan goes from 4:30 run/:30 walk (6x) to just running a full 30 minutes, which seems like too big of a leap right now. Also I really look forward to those walk intervals :)

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  8. You don't have to run a mile without stopping. I usually don't. I could but it's not important. As you as you are out there, that's what matters.You are so lucky to have company when you run. My runs are so much better when I don't run alone. and when you are injured, you so appreciate being able to run even it's one mile. Nerves are normal. I think we all get them. At every race!! We just don't talk about it because we forget once the race is over and we did finish.

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    1. I know I don't have to, but I used to...so therefore I want to. ;)

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  9. Great job running that mile! Even though I've been running for several months now, I still doubt myself, even at distances I have done before. Maybe that will fade with time and experience...I hope so!

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