“A person should set his goals as early as he can and devote all his energy and talent to getting there. With enough effort, he may achieve it. Or he may find something that is even more rewarding. But in the end, no matter what the outcome, he will know he has been alive.” - Walt Disney

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Roller Coaster Ride-Along While Running

This morning, as I was watching the local early morning news while running on the treadmill, they did a special segment on the new Texas Giant at Six Flags over Texas. The roller coaster, which has been closed for over a year for "enhancements," is re-opening this week. For anyone unfamiliar with the ride, here's a quick blurb about it:

"This new super hybrid will have a state-of-the-art track of steel fabrication, with the steepest drop of any wooden coaster in the world at 79 degrees. The lift hill will be 10 feet taller than the original Texas Giant. The new ride will also have a record-breaking bank of 95 degrees, steeper than any other wooden coaster on the planet."

The coolest part was that they did a LIVE "ride-along."  You can see it here.

I'm a huge roller coaster fan, so this was very exciting for me! I was also nearing the end of my run, so it made for a fun two minutes when I'd normally be trudging along! I'm thinking there's definitely a trip to Six Flags in our future sometime soon so we can experience the new ride in person!

Today's run:
  • 10 min warm-up walk
  • 2.31 mi run; 0:30:00; 12:59 min/mi avg. pace

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

California, Here I Come!

Cue the music...We're headed back to the Golden State at the end of July!  But instead of sunny Los Angeles, foggy San Francisco is our destination this trip.  Why, you ask?  Because it's one of the only places you'd feel comfortable running a half marathon on July 31st, even if there are hills involved!!!

That's right, my San Francisco 1st Half Marathon training begins this week.  The course time limit for the 1st Half is 3 hours - that's a 13:45 pace - something I should be able to handle pretty easily, and wouldn't normally be worried about.  However, I'm slightly concerned about the hills, and I'm definitely going to want to be able to enjoy the incredible scenery, so I'm trying a different training plan this time around.  I'm going with a Time Goal Training Schedule, hoping to pick up a little speed so I'll have a decent cushion in July.  This will be my first ever experience with speed work, so any advice you all can offer will be greatly appreciated!

I've added my training schedule (which will probably be modified due to starting Galloway Group Training at the end of Week 5), the Course Map, and a quick Course Video of the First Half route at the bottom of the page.  If you're interested in seeing what I've gotten myself into - or perhaps in joining us for what promises to be a great race - check them out!

Today's stats:
  • 10 minute warm-up walk
  • 2.24 mi run; 0:30:00 min; 13:24 min/mi avg
    • I accidentally selected the old 1:1 intervals on my Garmin and didn't realize it until after I'd warmed up and was a minute into running and I didn't feel like starting over, so I just went with it.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Decidedly Dopey

"This loveable, slightly-balmy, child-like fellow gets a great kick out of life.  Imbued with a sense of fun, he is a bit like Harpo-Marx, in that Dopey doesn’t speak, but his sly grin seems to ‘tell all.’  Dopey’s garments are at least 5 sizes too big for him, but that only adds to his charm.  Somewhat mischievous, Dopey somehow manages to capture the hearts of everyone." - http://crushable.com

No doubt about it, I have definitely been Dopey recently.  Not really in the way of the characteristics ascribed to Dopey the dwarf above, but in the common vernacular kind of "dopey."  And mostly in regards to my running training and nutrition lately.  Neither of which are good things.

So, how to turn it around?  New race, new goals, new motivation and inspiration.  Stay tuned for the next post for details on what's up next...

***This is the end of the dwarf-themed posts.  I managed to get all 7 of them in, and it's amazing how each dwarf's "theme" really did fit into my life...with maybe just a little tweaking...  Are you ready to test your Seven Dwarfs knowledge?

1.  Whose shoulders does Dopey stand on to dance with Snow White?
          a.  Happy     b.  Sneezy     c.  Bashful     d.  Doc

2. Who has the biggest nose?
          a.  Dopey     b.   Doc     c.  Grumpy     d.  Sneezy

3. Who is in charge of locking the door to the diamond mine at the end of the day?
          a.  Doc     b.  Bashful      c.   Sleepy     d.  Dopey

4. What dwarf has the biggest belly?
        a.  Sneezy     b.  Bashful     c.  Happy     d.  Dopey

5. At the end of the movie, Snow White kisses each dwarf on the head except one.  Who does she miss?
         a.  Sleepy     b.  Dopey     c.  Bashful     d.  Grumpy

Scroll down for answers...

ANSWERS:  How'd you do?
  1. Sneezy (b)
  2. Grumpy (c)
  3. Dopey (d)
  4. Happy (c)
  5. Sleepy (a)

Today's stats:
  • 40 min Yoga for Runners DVD

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Grumpy's Not Good

"The real leader of the group, Grumpy is ‘agin’ everything.   He is grouchy, crabby, and his primary dislike is ‘wimmin!’ While his nose is the most prominent part of his face, his soft, tender heart is even bigger under all that gruff veneer – much to his own disgust.  When trouble arises, it’s Grumpy who acts first to save the day!" - http://crushable.com/

Watch out, it's Grumpy day...the one I've been putting off because I feel like my posts have taken a decidedly negative turn on their own recently, even without having this particular dwarf as the theme.

As many of you know, lately I've been in a slump - a running slump.  I'm having trouble getting motivated, even on nice days, to do any kind of running.  Then, because I'm not officially training for anything, I'm not feeling the pressure to force myself to go for a run, so I've skipped more workouts than I'd care to admit and turned a few into walks instead of runs.

As a result, I've been trying to find ways to get myself out of this grumpy funk.  I've asked for advice from many, and have gotten some great info and motivation from other's blogs.  I've also bookmarked a couple of good inspirational quote websites and signed up for Runner's World "quote of the day" email list - all quick and easy "go-to" places when I'm feeling a little low.  I thought I'd share a few with you all.  This is by no means a comprehensive list, but it does include some of my favorites:

"Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you, 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?" - Peter Maher 

"Run hard, be strong, think big!" - Percy Cerutty 

"Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it." - Oprah Winfrey

"If someone says, ‘Hey, I ran 100 miles this week. How far did you run?’ ignore him! What the hell difference does it make?…. The magic is in the man, not the 100 miles." - Bill Bowerman

"Pain is nothing compared to what it feels like to quit." - unknown

"I decided to go for a little run." - Forest Gump 

Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will not survive. Every morning a lion wakes up and it knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve. It doesn't matter if you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up, you better be running. - African Proverb

So there you go.  I'll try my best to be less grumpy from here on out.  No promises that every post will be sunshine and roses, but a more positive attitude is definitely on the agenda for the next training cycle!