Ever-Changing Goals

Changes in Goals
One of the things that I like about goals, is that you can change them or modify them as frequently as you would like. I have daily goals- sometimes even hourly, short term, and long-term goals. There are goals in varying parts of my life of course.

As a mom, my main goal, is to be the best mom that I can possibly be! This is both a daily, short-term, and long term goal. Most days, I feel like I accomplish this. Of course there are days, that I wonder if I end up accomplishing anything even though I run around like a chicken with its head cut off!! With managing school, sports, home work, the daily ins and outs of life, etc, sometimes my mommy goals get put to the side and we just fly by the seats of our pants!
With running, my goal is a sub-4 marathon. I know that I have written about this before- it’s no secret. Right now, I feel like I’m so close, that I can almost taste it! I have 1 min and 57 seconds to cut off in order to obtain that goal. That would give me a 3:59:59. I can do it. I know I can. It is well within my grip and it’s going to happen. I just have to keep working toward it.
With swimming, I need to increase my endurance. I have decided to put the flippers aside (unless I am swimming after a long run), to build up my endurance. I feel like they have become a crutch for me and I need to just make them go away unless they are really needed to help me with recovery. Endurance is key.

In the last 2 months, I decided that I want to participate in a triathlon,with the long-term goal of an Ironman 70.3. I set my sights on Augusta 2017. I thought it would be attainable. I have come to realize that it truly isn’t my top priority. I only came to terms with this over this last weekend. I went to buy a bike and the process was WAY more complex than I ever imagined. I thought that I would go in, get sized, and walk out with a bike. Not so much. First off, it was just a “weird” experience. Besides that, I learned that a brand new bike will start at…. $1000- yes, you read that right. Holy cow!! How do I even know I like to ride a bike that much? None-the-less, ride a bike for 56 miles (the distance in the 70.3)! I don’t, and that is reality. So, the dream is still alive- just postponed a bit.


Re-evaluating My Goals
The “weird” experience purchasing a bike made me rethink my priorities with athleticism. I had to decide what was the most important thing to me. Well, RUNNING, of course!! Running is my top priority- beyond the shadow of a doubt. With that being said, I do not think that adding in biking at this point of time will allow me to focus as much on running. And to me, that won’t work. I have been running 4 days a week, and my coach, has decided to “sneak in” a 5th day. I say sneak in, because it truly was through subtle means that it happened. He asked me what days I worked, realized I don’t work on Sundays, so “get in what you can” landed on my running schedule on Sunday this week. I just had to laugh!! I started out with running 3 days a week, managed to add a 4th day, then increased my mileage to 40-45 miles, and now will be adding a couple of extra miles a week on Sunday mornings. But, this will help me attain my most important goal.
I have decided that getting a bike can wait until the spring/summer of 2017 and delay the thought of the 70.3 until 2018. I want to be smart in the way that I attempt to accomplish my goals. Also, I want to be smart in my training. I only have so much time with working full time, being a mom of 3 kids, and being active in their sports activities. Whew! It amazes me some days how I manage it. I use my weekday “days off” for training- that is how I fit it all in, along with running on weekends before the kids wake up.


So, I have re-prioritized my goals for 2017. All my activities need to have goals. I do this because it keeps me moving forward in my life and my sports.
For being a Mom- I want to continue to prioritize my children and their activities and to continue encouraging them to develop their talents to the best of their ability. The boys are both talented in baseball and basketball, and then Cole has an amazing talent in cross country as well. Caitlin loves baseball, and she also is talented in swimming. She now swims twice a week at the pre-swim team level. I am so proud of each one of them. I also want them to know how proud I am of all of their accomplishments- without making them have large heads!
For Swimming- I want to build my endurance- ideally get to swim 1000 yards straight by the end of next year. That is a very hefty goal, considering I am no where near that at this point of my training. But, that is OK. I am swimming 2 days per week and I am hoping to get in some Saturday mornings which will give me a 3rd day per week. I know that this will help me build my endurance to where I need it to be. With being part of the Masters Program, at least I have someone coaching me to achieve my goals.
For Running- I am going to continue training with my current coach. He knows my ins and outs- he is still learning all of my quirks! I have seen such significant improvement since February and I just overall feel better when I run, after working with him over the last 8 months. He has faith in me, and writes my weekly schedules based off my strengths and weaknesses. To me, that is huge. I want to get below a 4 hour marathon, and then slowly hack away at the time, little by little, to see where I can push things. I THRIVE on training! In fact, my recovery week I didn’t have a plan and felt lost. Getting back into training mode helps to put me in a better mood, focus me better, and just overall make me feel better. When I approach the marathon, I seem to question why I put myself through the racing part of it. Especially when the training part is my favorite. But, how else do you test your body’s limits? You race! The marathon isn’t my favorite distance- I’m not exactly sure yet what my favorite distance is, but I think its the 1/2 marathon. That, too, I’d like to improve. But with new goals in my sights, I want to crush them!

Having goals is important to forward progress. Working toward my goals is what keeps me motivated. Of course making progress in races always makes me feel good. I know that that won’t happen every time, and that’s OK. Knowing that I ran the best race that I can run is the most important thing for me with every race! Being the best me that I can be truly is what I want into do!

Recap: The Hartford Marathon

So, where do you start a recap? Well, it started in February when I hired a new coach in preparation for The Hartford Marathon. Fast forward 8 months and we end up at the day before The Hartford Marathon.

The Day Before

So, on Friday, pre-race day, it is time to consult with my coach to find out my plan for the marathon. This is always exciting, because he won’t really talk about it until the day before. He had told me that it is so I wouldn’t obsess about the numbers for days before the race- makes sense for me. Especially since I do get some form of pre-race anxiety (still working on this). So, 17 hours before race time, we converse via FB message as we always do. He asked me my goals. I always go into a race with 3 goals. It helps me mentally because I don’t think its smart to only have a single goal. With just 1 goal, if you miss it, then you can be disappointed by the entire race! No thank you!! My first goal was a sub-4 marathon, Goal #2- sub 4:05, Goal #3- sub 4:15- which was my previous PR. Well, the conversation didn’t go as I expected it to. I absolutely love my coach and trust everything he tells me to do. But, when he told me he thought I would be 4:00-ish, not sub-4, I was upset. I wanted to cry!! When it is 17 hours before the start of the race, that was the last thing that I wanted to hear. I felt l like he didn’t have faith in me- this was just my perception. He told me definitely he expected me below 4:15, which was good. The best advice he gave me (besides my paces), was to treat each of the 26 miles as individual miles, rather than a full race. I told him during our conversation that I didn’t think I could do that, to break it into 26 pieces. But, I was wrong! I spent some time being down on myself, thinking that I lacked the ability, but I wasn’t thinking clearly.

Time to Change My Mental State
For the last week, I have reread the majority of the book, “Boston Bound”, by Elizabeth Clor. This has helped me with my pre-race anxiety for my last marathon in June and I used it to help me keep myself calm the week before this marathon- which tends to be the hardest time for me. Major important quote from the book that help me- “…run the best race that you can, even if it’s not a PR…” That became my new mantra for the race.
I really focused on what my coach told me- breaking the race down into 26 pieces- and decided that I needed to look at it another way. I don’t think it’s that he lacked faith in me, he wanted me to gain more faith in myself!

The Game Plan
The plan was that I was going to start at a 9:10-9:15 pace, and drop down to 9:05-9:10 at mile 10, if I felt “awesome.” Awesome? Who truly feels awesome after running 10 miles, knowing that you have an additional 16.2 miles left? After that, it was just up to me and how I felt during the course of the race. Pretty straight forward, but it would require negative splits. I have NEVER run a marathon with negative splits. In fact, in all marathons that I have raced, my paces have dropped exponentially after mile 20-22. I didn’t want it to happen that way this time. I had put too much work into preparing for the race. I ran countless 18-20 miler training runs- something that I never have done before. The work was in, now the plan had to be executed: for a “4:00-ish” race.


Putting it into Action
The morning of the race, couldn’t have been better weather. Seriously, it was near-perfect conditions! For the last 2 weeks, the weather had been calling for rain. Ugh, I did’t want to race another marathon in the rain. I raced RNR DC in the rain and that was pure misery, but lucky for me, weather was great!! Eating before a race is never easy for me. The goal was to get in 2 waffles and a banana. That didn’t exactly go according to plan, but I did get in 1 1/2 bananas and 1 waffle. I have nerves the morning of a race and that prevents me from eating as much as I would like to.

I walked to the race start with my husband and sister, with 30 minutes until go time! Perfect!! I cannot remember all the miles of the race, to say I did would be lying. I can say, though, that I remember the first 2 miles being too fast! I started at a 9:00 min/mile pace, which was 15 seconds faster per mile than I was supposed to run. I think that the adrenaline kicked in but I knew I had to slow it down and gain control. I did NOT want to bonk. Bonking was NOT an option!!



I think that fueling went really well during the race. I started fueling at mile 3.5. I use ProBar chomps- 1 every 4 miles. It’s not a lot of calories, but it is something that I have managed to keep down during all of my races. I was also counting on Gatorade every 4 miles- with almost 50 calories per cup (even though I didn’t drink the full cup). I had no trouble taking in my nutrition, up until Mile 22 when I felt nausea as soon as I put the chomp in my mouth, so I just spit it out and figured I would have to depend on Gatorade for the rest of the race.

The Race

The Race itself was awesome. I loved it! I started having some aches in my knees before the halfway mark, and I thought that was strange because I never have pain in my knees. I brushed it off and kept focusing on the positives. I did notice, though, that pretty quickly, my miles weren’t clicking off at the same time as the mile markers were labelled. This was a big concern for me, but I didn’t know how to fix this mid-race. Unfortunately, this was a mistake that I will learn from.

I kept pushing myself, taking each mile as it came, watching my pace and keeping up with my plan. At Mile 20, I was really surprised to realize that I was still feeling OK. This is normally the point where I hit a wall- but there was no wall to be seen. I felt good, and just kept running. Even when Mile 22 came and went, I still felt good!! Mile 25 was a completely different story. All of a sudden, I started dry heaving- out of the blue! I had to slow down to a walk while this happened. Another runner approached me and asked if I wanted a gel to help give me energy. I had to say no thank you in between wretching on the side of the road- but I didn’t stop moving. I kept pushing forward. Soon enough, I knew that I could finish this race, I just couldn’t give up. I started running again and met up with my husband. That was a nice surprise for me! We ran the last 1/2 mile side by side. As we approached the arches in the finishing shute, the wretching began again! I couldn’t believe it. I just wanted to finish this race. My body overall felt good- sore, but good- and I was ready to finish strong. I kept running even though my body was trying to throw up anything it could- but it didn’t. Once I crossed the finish line, medical personnel came right over to me and walked me to the fence where he had me hold on the gate of the finishing shute. Yes, I continued to dry heave for a couple of minutes. Another person came over to me and wrapped me in my ever-so-favorite silver blanket. Thankfully, my husband was with me, and the medic was able to leave him in charge of me at that point. My body finally calmed down, so we were able to move on and get our medals. Let me just say that the medal is big and beautiful!! It has green stained glass in it. OMG! Just gorgeous.

Finishing Time

So, what was my final time? As I approached the finish line, I saw the clock said 4:02:?? I was hoping that this was from the wheelchair start, which would have allowed me to make my sub-4. I honestly thought I had it because I ran  past the 4:00 pacer at mile 24!! My official finish time was 4:01:56. That is a 13 + minute PR for me! I was beyond thrilled!! I was actually happier with my finish time than I ever thought I would be. Two goals were conquered. The third goal would have to be for another time.


Finishing Thoughts

I learned a lot this race. I learned that I need to have more faith in myself, and sometimes people will force you to think more positively even when you don’t realize it. Turns out, my coach thought I would end up with a 4:05- so I actually beat the time that he anticipated for me. That made me really happy.

Breaking the race down into 26 pieces really helped get me through. It helped me stay on pace. I ended with a 9:09 pace, over 26.47 miles. Yes, I went over in distance, but something that I have learned, is that extra distance needs to be accounted for in calculating pace for the race. I needed a 9:09 pace to get me a sub-4, but over the distance of 26.2 miles, not 26.47. So, that extra distance prevented me from getting my ultimate goal. That is OK. I am OK- and actually WAY better than OK- with the results of the race. I now know, that I have to manually hit the mile button to keep me on target with pacing during the race rather than depend on the auto lap on my watch. Rookie mistake? Maybe. But I never had such high goals or expectations before! I also never worked so hard for a race or put in so many miles.

The Future

What does the future hold now? My future is definitely going to have a sub-4 marathon. I feel it! I know better now what to do to help me achieve it. Will it be the next race that I run? I hope so, but that doesn’t mean it will be. It means that I have to keep working hard, pushing the envelope, continuing to train, to help make me a better athlete, building my self-confidence to achieve my goal. I will continue to work hard with my coach, pushing my limits, to accomplish my goal.


Tapering Time

Well, it’s that time again… taper time. Race day is now only  7 days away. Crazy!! I have been training for this race since February, yet it seems like it totally snuck up on me. How can it possibly be only 7 days away. I mean, it had been months away!! I will be taking on the Hartford Marathon with my husband and sister on October 8th.

Usually, the last 2 weeks before a race, mileage starts to precipitously drop, and that is when the possibility of runners depression sets in. For every marathon except my last two (including this one), I always went through a runner’s depression! One difference with these two races is that I have had a different coach, who doesn’t taper me as much. I had been running mid-40’s with miles per week, and now I am was at upper 30’s this week and then still will be getting some decent miles in this last week. That definitely makes a huge difference with my overall attitude toward the world. I know that everyone around me is glad that my miles are still higher.🙂 Lower miles makes for a cranky me!!


This past week I had a 12 mile progressive run and then some easy runs, ending with a 12 mile run today. I am excited that tomorrow I have the privilege of running a 5K with all the adult women in my family. We are running in memory of my grandmother who passed away in July. My aunt made us all tank tops that we will wear. It is a Diva 5K- we get tutus and everything!! It will be an easy 3.1 miles for me, though. No racing. Gotta save the legs for race day. Just have fun! It’s nice to run a race every so often where there is no pressure.

Its hard when you work for months and months for a single day. It’s like all your work that you put in, comes down to just one single day. This is what gets my nerves going and I feel like that is what makes running marathons so challenging. You can control what you where, your mindset, your nutrition, but you cannot control things like the weather or what actually happens that day, so your mind is the most important thing that has to stay focused. But, I am working on mentally staying focused and positive. THAT is just so important. Keep visualizing the goals. Keep focusing on the “I can do this.” “I am going to accomplish this.” Keeping the negative thoughts away from the brain.

Doing a race that is away, is another challenge. Luckily we are racing where where I grew up, so we are staying with my mom. But still, I am out of my element, out of my routine. Even eating is off when you are away from home. Running here alway proves to be a challenge because there are a lot of stop signs, stop lights, traffic, etc, that you have to deal with. So, when you run just 12 miles, it seems like you have run so much further. It’s just more of a mind-numbing run than I would like the week before my race.

I will go into this race with 3 goals. I think that having multiple goals is important. I think that having an epic goal that your heart is set on is extremely important, then a goal that is slightly slower, and then just a time that you would be OK with. All goals that you have in your mind are important. I, of course, will be running for Mary and Morgan, so I will channel the energy that they give me to finish this race and accomplish my goals. These girls continue to inspire me.

In the end... run

Who Am I?

I wrote this while I was walking today. I do my best thinking when I am walking or running. Well, usually it’s running, but today it was walking.

Who am I? That is the age old question, isn’t it? What defines me? Well, I am a mother, a wife, a doctor, a runner, a swimmer, a writer. But are these things labels or are these the things that define who I am as a person?

i am me-2

How do I want people to describe me? I think that if someone just said that I was a doctor, then they would be missing so many amazing pieces of what makes me up. Same thing for any of those “labels” that I listed above. I LOVE all those aspects of what makes me who I am, but do they define me as a person? If I listed all those “labels” as to who am I, what does that tell you about me? Does it tell you that I inspire people? motivate people? That I am a caring person? Honest? What I can tell you, is that if I didn’t have these “labels”, I wouldn’t be as driven as I am, I wouldn’t have had the platform to stand up and motivate and inspire people. If I wasn’t a mother, I wouldn’t have been as driven to get myself in shape and set a good example to my children. It is because of motherhood, that I knew I had to work harder on my health. Exercise gave me the time I needed to decrease my stress, but not only that, it helped shape the person I am today. If I didn’t run, then I never would have thought about helping to push and motivate other people to exercise. If I didn’t help to motivate other people, I wouldn’t have thought about writing! It just amazes me how every aspect of my life feeds into one another and truly does make me a better person.

I am a better person because I am a mother. I am a better person because I am a wife. I am a better person because I am a runner and a swimmer. I am a better person because I am a writer- because it allows me to reach so many people, to help motivate and inspire them.


“Labels”, as people call it, aren’t that. They aren’t just words. I feel like they are the internal makeup of who we are as people. I LOVE my labels. Not only are they words, they are MINE, and MINE ALONE! I am not just defined alone by my parts, but as the summation of my parts. As a matter of fact, look out 2017, because there are more “labels” coming my way!!!



This has been an amazing week of training for me. I actually didn’t realize how good it was until I got a message from my coach tonight. I had a 13 mile alternating tempo run on Monday. He said that my time- ended up being 1:56. That included 3 miles that I ran slow- both for the warmup and cool down. My PR right now for the 1/2 marathon is 1:56. So, if I was actually running/racing those other 3 miles, I could have beat my PR by several minutes! To me, that is absolutely awesome. It shows that the hard work and dedication that I have been putting in, is paying off. When you have tough runs, it’s hard to see the progress you have made. But, hearing this news was just awesome!

Tuesday morning I had my first “masters” swim class, where I swam with a larger group. I literally had 30 minutes, no more, to swim. The class is an hour long, but I had to drive home, get my kids, and then get them to school on time! Not an easy feat, but we completely managed it! Swimming was actually a lot of fun. I got to keep my flippers on the whole time. I progressed from swimming 25’s, to finishing with a 100 yard swim! Unreal, for me!! I didn’t think I could ever do that, but I did. What an accomplishment for myself. I was just bouncing around because I had achieved this. After bringing the kid to school, I had an easy 6 mile run. At night, I had a friend look after 2 of my kids while the 3rd one was at baseball practice, so that I could get in an additional 3 mile run. That felt fine. It was nice and easy.


Wednesday was my rest day, which I was so happy about. My legs were TIRED!! “Rest” of course means, work a full day of work, get the kids, drop 2 off at baseball, get the dog from daycare & drop him off at home, then go back to the baseball fields to watch the end of practice, bring everyone home, get them showered, finish HW, help the kids study for their tests, while, of course cooking dinner for everyone, and then get them all to sleep. All in a day’s rest!!!

Thursday morning, I had swim class again. This time, I got to swim for an entire hour!! We did warm up swims, then a pyramid building from 25 to 100 yards, and then back down again. Then, he told us to build up in 50 yd increments from 50 to 150!! I looked at him and asked, “me?” He said, “absolutely!” Off we went. There are 3 in my group- we are the slow group and proud of it. We are beginner swimmers, but we are learning, and that is all the matters. Well, by the end of the hour, I had swam 1250 yards!! Are you kidding me?! That was the furthest I have ever swam. I even finished off with 50 yards of swimming without fins on. It is much harder, let me tell you. You feel like you are barely moving- I am learning to dig in more with my arms to pull myself through the water rather than depending on my legs to push me through. Learning process- that is what it is all about. I had to race to work, because 15 minutes after I got out of swim class, I had a meeting. Well, I showed up soaking wet, still in my bathing suit, with a t-shirt and running skirt covering it. They just laughed at me. At least I was setting a good example of being fit, right? Of course I changed before the workday began, but I froze at our meeting because it is always so cold at work. Let’s just say, though, that I was in the best mood all day long. Exercise first thing in the morning just gives me this amazing energy! I slept horribly the night before, so I thought that I would be just exhausted, but instead, I felt like I was bouncing off of walls- just happy and full of incredible energy!! I felt like I was on cloud 9 all day long. That night, I had another easy 3 mile run, while my daughter had baseball practice. I couldn’t leave her too long, so 3 miles was all that I could get in.

These running and swimming things are just incredible. I truly am learning so much more about myself, my body, just everything! Cross training with swimming has just been amazing for me too. I am getting a cardio workout, without the pounding on my legs. Ideally, I’d like to continue to run 4 days per week and swim twice a week. Yes, there is overlap because my schedule is so limited, but I think its OK. I’m making it work. I have to remember, that no matter what I do, I am lapping the person on the couch!! I run 40-ish miles per week and hoping to get in 2200 yards of swimming in next week. Maybe more?!

What lies in the future? Everyone asks me about doing a triathlon. Honestly, I thought they were crazy. Then, I keep seeing my friends doing them and I looked one up. If I can build on my swimming and learn how to bike (like really bike), I can do it!! I know I can. One step at a time. My first goals: learn to swim long distance without flippers, and get a sub-4 marathon. I’d like to knock those off my list. Then, I need to acquire a bike- and I heard they aren’t cheap- and learn how to really bike. That’s when everything opens up for me…. the world will be at my fingertips and I can accomplish anything!!

What are your goals? Are you working towards short term and long term goals? Share with me, because I know what it is like to have those goals and be working hard toward achieving them. Let’s conquer our goals!!


Mentally Tough Week

Running Saturday night rather than Saturday morning, made a huge difference in my recovery and set me up for a tougher than expected week. My post-run replenishment was horrible! I had such nausea, that I ate only 4 french fries (which I was SOOOO excited for)! That was my recovery meal- NOT good!! And I have paid for it this week. My muscles just didn’t heal as well as they should after my 21 mile run.Just run

Monday didn’t seem to be a problem. I only had 7 relaxed miles to conquer. It went well, felt good. No trouble. My legs didn’t feel fresh- still recovering from the weekend, but the slower pace don’t seem to bother them as much.

Tuesday was ROUGH!! I swam about 1000yards at 7AM and then started my speed work at 8:30AM. I really struggled during my run. After about 5 miles, we were supposed to run up a hill. I literally stopped running and stared at the hill. My husband went up ahead, and then realized I had stopped running. He came back to me,thinking that I must have been hurt because I just don’t stop during a run. I told him, “I just can’t run up that hill. I’m done!” He was dumbfounded. “What?!” he said. “Nope. I’m not doing it. I’m walking up the hill and will run when I’m at the top.” I told him. His response was, “Don’t think that I’m not telling your coach about this!!” I didn’t care, I walked up that stupid hill and then ran my way down it. Unfortunately for me, there was another hill coming up. I just sucked it up and ran up that hill- and more than conquered my pace that I needed. When I finished the tempo part of my speed work, I felt my left hamstring tighten up. I stopped at stretched it out. I was hoping that it would just recover and let me finish. Then, I had to run 2- 8:20 miles with a small rest in between. During the first of those runs, my hamstring tightened up again, I stopped and stretched it. With only 0.25 miles left, I realized that I had to hang it up, stop, and just make sure that I heal up. Only 60 days to go until marathon day!! I ended up with 6.75 miles for the day. I was supposed to have 9 miles. Sometimes you have to sacrifice the extra miles to allow healing.

I tried to figure out why I had given up on that run earlier. I really wanted to kill my speed work, but by the time the hill came, I was mentally done. I just wasn’t full of mental toughness. My quads were sore from swimming that morning, and I used up all my energy by the time it was time for running. It really frustrated me because if it was mile 25 of a marathon, I really would just have to suck it up and make it happen. But what if I don’t? What if I let it get the best of me and just walk? I have GOT to build this mental toughness and get myself ready for my marathon in October. How do you build it? Working hard, keep pushing, keep moving forward. It’s a learning process, something that can’t always be done by yourself. You need support, people that run with you, people that will just support you.


Thursday’s run was a very laid back run. I ran with my 7 1/2 year old. Life at home has been extremely hectic with school starting, studying for tests, homework, and sports. So,  there was much needed quality time. He ran 4 miles, and I got in 4.5 miles with running loops. He was so excited. This was the furthest he has EVER run. I was just SOOOOO proud of him! What an accomplishment for him, and what great quality time for us. After that, my 5 1/2 yr. old daughter wanted to run with me too. She ran 0.3 miles down and then up a hill. She felt very accomplished. What a great way to spend time with my kids. I love that they love running.

Saturday was another tough run. I started at 5AM as usual, with my running girls. The first 3 miles were easy, but then it was time for 5 sets of 2 miles fast and then 1/2 mile jog in between them, finishing off with a 3 mile cool down. It really wasn’t tough the first 3 sets of intervals. But then my stomach/intestines started feeling sick. That made it much more difficult, but I still managed to hit my splits. I had 2 left and felt like I could barely breathe because my stomach hurt so badly. In crazy runner form, my running partner asked a lady who was out on her porch (it was probably only 7-730AM) if we could use her bathroom!! Amazingly, she said yes, that she used to be a runner, so she totally understood. After that pitstop, I had no problems breathing and hitting every split again. The last 3 miles of the cool down I had to do by myself. I was tired ,hot, sweating, and just ready for it to be done. But, I did it… every last mile. I knew I just had to finish, to push through. I ended up with 18.5 miles, the exact distance I was scheduled to do. I kept my mind in the game. I kept focused. I knew I could do it. Just staying strong helped push me through.

tough but satisfied

I’ve had to analyze and try to re-organize my running and swimming schedules. My husband pointed out to me that I am letting my cross-training, i.e. swimming, get in the way of my main focus- running. I didn’t realize that and I thought that I could just “suck it up.” Only this week, when things in both sports got tough, did my walls come crashing down. Too much! I spoke with my coach and we are trying a different system this week. I will do my speed work on Monday- hopefully I will be rested by that time, from my long run Saturday morning. I will swim on Tuesday and do a lighter running workout that day. This way, I get in all of the running I need, and also get in some cross-training that I so desperately need.

Here we go!!

Swimming Complications

I went swimming yesterday with friends last night because my swim lessons got cancelled in the morning. This was totally living on the edge for me because I have never swam laps without my swim instructor being there. But, only way to progress is to step outside the box!! Let me just say…. It was awesome!!! I actually loved it way more than I thought I would. I had to decide what pattern I was going to swim. I swam some 25’s, 50’s, and then 125 with 15 seconds of rest in between! I did it!! That was what amazed me the most. It was fun because I was there with my friends and getting amazing support from them. They gave me some tips to help me with my breathing- still working on the breathing pattern to build my endurance. My heart is still beating out of my chest once I hit 50 yards! I know that this will improve with time and practice. Just keep swimming!!

I kept noticing that my left ear felt full and I would pull on it to let out the water. I always feel like that canal gets water stuck in it when I’ve been swimming during lessons. Last night I guess was the straw that broke the camel’s back, though. I felt like it was full last night and then today, it progressively was hurting more and more. I had my friend (a physician)look at it and confirmed my suspicions. Swimmer’s ear! Seriously?! At 39 years old, I developed swimmer’s ear for the first time. Still waiting on my husband to get my medication since it appears that almost every pharmacy is sold out of the medication!!! Craziness.

keep swimming

I have learned, though, that I am really enjoying this whole swimming thing. I am really looking forward to continuing to build my endurance. Everyone asks me if I”m going to do a triathlon next… it’s not in my plans right now, but who knows?! First, I have to get better at swimming. Then, I will have to get a bike, learn how to change gears, and then learn how to bike distances! One step at a time.  As a friend told me, “ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!”