Monday, March 19, 2012

Meeting Goals

What a great weekend for my Team in Training adventure!  I met my fundraising minimum for Team in Training (so I get to focus on running for the final month) and I set a new distance record for myself in the same amount of time as it took me to run the half marathon.  I'm feeling good about being able to run an additional mile in the same amount of time.  I'm up to 14.1 miles in the bank.

This week is a "rest week" so I only have to run for 2 hours in my long run and I get to skip my Wednesday run.  It's amazing what things make you excited when you are training for a marathon.  I "only" have to run for 2 hours.  How many of you think that sounds like an easy day?  This marathon thing seems to mess with my brain.  Maybe that is why so many of my teammates are addicted enough to be competing in their 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or higher marathons.  After we finished last week's run, several of them laughed when I told them that I plan to retire from marathons after I finish the Madrid marathon next month.  They are convinced that I'll be back for more.

Thanks to the fundraising events over the last week (and a great pin I got from my participation on the Light the Night board), I have had the opportunity to share my personal mission (fundraising for a cure to blood cancers) with many people over the last week and have been richly rewarded by peoples' generosity.

Now I am able to focus on getting better at running and learning about Spain. At least for the next month...

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Trying to Best my PR

With this weekend's run scheduled to be as many minutes as my half marathon, I am hoping to beat my distance along the Burke Gilman trail.  That will help show that I can still continue to improve as I approach the final weeks before my race.  This is the second to last increase that I will have in my long runs.  Two weeks from now, I will run for 3 hours and that will be my longest run until Madrid.

Five weeks until race day!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

I am a Half Marathoner!

I accomplished an unexpected goal this weekend, as I completed my first half marathon.  Though it may be surprising to hear, I never had a goal to run a marathon.  I prefer the shorter races, as my lifelong training in soccer is much more conducive to sprints.  It was the LLS's Team in Training program that convinced me to do it. I originally was planning to complete a triathlon through the program, but figured that wasn't a big enough goal as I have already completed triathlons.  I decided instead to go big and train for the marathon.

As we begin to approach the big day, my coaches suggested that those of us who have never run a marathon should enter a half marathon race to help us develop a race strategy and learn what the full marathon might be like.  It turns out that a lot of thought goes into running for multiple hours.  I have to figure out what and when to eat or drink, the day before and during the race and after the race.  Most likely I will be running for 5-6 hours in Madrid, so I have to think about when to let my body take a break and walk.

The half marathon definitely helped with all of that.  I think I started out running a little bit too fast, so I will have to be more careful in Madrid.  But, even though I walked more than I wanted to in the 2nd half of the marathon, I FINISHED!  I was only about 10 minutes behind my goal time which gives me hope that I will be able to complete the Madrid race within the time limit after learning more about racing for a long time.

It was much harder than I imagined it would be, but it was also my longest run to date.  Up until this point, my longest run had been 10.5 miles.  I bested that by a good amount with 13.1 miles logged today.  My run tracker tells me that I burned over 1500 calories during the run.  Can you believe that?  It might explain why I am always ravenous these days.  :)

Thanks to everyone who encouraged me along the way today!  It was such a great treat to have Facebook posts giving me strength before the race and helping to celebrate my accomplishment when all was said and done.

Six weeks until race day!
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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Team Firefly takes its First Steps

On Wednesday morning, I participated in the first Executive Committee meeting for the 2012 Light the Night walk.  It is hard to believe that we are already getting started (and the LLS staff is well under way) planning for another amazing Light the Night event.  Since they have just forged a new partnership with the Sounders and Seahawks, I am DEFINITELY on board.

Seriously though, I am very excited about this year's walk and am thrilled to share that Team Firefly is signed up already!  If you want to join us for a stroll around Greenlake on September 29th, you can go to and click "Join" at the bottom of the page.  Since we have been the top fundraising team for the last two years (Go Team Firefly!), we are starting to get a reputation and may need to start fundraising early this year.

If you haven't joined us for a Light the Night event yet, come join us this year!  It is a wonderful event and great for the entire family.  The Remembrance Ceremony will start at 5pm, the kids' activities will start at 5:30, and the walk will officially start at 7.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Could you send me your legs for a week?

I'm preparing to set another personal record next Saturday when I run my first half marathon race! 

Up until today my longest run was 10.5 miles, but next weekend I will conquer 13.1 miles in the Lake Sammamish Half.  We'll run from Sammamish State Park to Marymoor (and then hope that I can still walk afterwards).  My friend Carrie signed up to run with me and I just learned last night that my friend Darren will be running it too, along with several others from my marathon training team.  I'm looking forward to having some friends along the route to cheer me on (especially since the Madrid fans will all be speaking Spanish and I won't know if they are cheering me on or not!) and to achieving this next goal in my training.

Six months ago, I would not have believed that a half marathon sounds like no problem.  I've never been one to run regularly, preferring to have a ball in front of me to motivate me to run, but regularly training with so many supportive people has really made me feel that I can do this!  While I only ran 10 miles this week and last week, my 8-10th miles were my fastest of the day.  Who would have believed that?

Several people have told me that they could never run a marathon and I just wanted to share that I am living proof that you can.  It was never a goal of mine to run a marathon and, while I think races are fun (I'm very goal oriented and having a finish line just in front of me is awesome!) I never enjoyed races that were longer that 3 miles.  But next Saturday, I will run 13.1 miles and I am VERY excited about it!

The fundraising is going great and I just had a taco feed to raise a little bit more for the battle, thanks to a generous donation from Whole Foods Redmond.  Thanks for your support, Whole Foods!  I have raised about $4000 so far and have just a little further to go.  Thanks to the many generous friends and family members and strangers who have helped me to raise so much money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Seven weeks until race day!