Archive | November, 2011

My body is not my own.

17 Nov

A while ago, I mentioned that I was going through the book Love to Eat, Hate to Eat with a group of women from church. My first realization was that my body does not represent who I really am. I am not the sum of how I look. There is more to me. That reminder has been very helpful over the last month, whenever I was tempted to think I should be skinnier.

But the past couple of weeks, I’ve swung the other way by letting myself eat whatever I want. I’m still eating mostly healthy with whole grains, lowfat dairy and fruits and veggies, but I’m also eating a bunch of extra crap – some Hershey’s kisses here, a cupcake there, a couple pieces of cornbread before dinner, a slice of ice cream cake from the break room. While I am in favor of diet freedom because I obsess less about food when I allow myself to eat whatever I am truly craving, these extras aren’t cravings – just convenient. I eat them because they’re right in front of me. I guess I wouldn’t mind a piece of cake right now.

Whenever behaviors like this go on for weeks at a time, they end up becoming habits. My habit becomes grabbing any sweet sitting out, instead of saying no to the “meh” ones. I eat a snack before dinner, even though the actual meal will be ready in 30 minutes. I have both wine and ice cream after dinner, instead of choosing one.

I realized this morning that these habits come out of my not recognizing that my body is not my own. I have been blessed with a genuine desire to eat (mostly) healthy and stay active so it’s never really been that much of a battle to take care of my body. Sure, I get off track now and then but I usually get back to healthy habits after a week or so because I honestly like it. But when I do get in funks like my current one, where I find myself eating more sweets and carbs than normal, I just brush it off saying, “This isn’t that big of a deal. I’ll get back on track soon enough.”

I started thinking, what if I did that with money? I’ll just splurge on this and that and next week I’ll get back on my budget. The consequences of my actions would still be around next week. Or what about with unhelpful books or movies? I’ll just watch Sex and the City this one time. The mental pictures don’t disappear the minute I turn the TV off.

Because I know that about money and unhelpful books and movies, I avoid them. I just don’t even go there. And I don’t feel restricted by not living beyond my means or watching inappropriate shows. I feel more free because I’m not encumbered by all the temptations and consequences that go along with those things.

Why is eating any different?

I know that I feel better and don’t think about my body image/weight/food as much when I’m exercising self-control and eating wisely. I know that eating a bunch of sugar in one day makes me feel gross. So why do I do it?

I’m pretty sure it’s because I don’t look at the consequences of eating poorly as being a big deal. Sure, I don’t feel the best when I eat too much food or too much sugar but the next morning, I eat some oatmeal, I go workout and I’m back to feeling pretty good. Easily solved, right?

But I forget that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. When I go to church, I treat the facility and furniture with respect because it’s God’s house. I don’t pour garbage all over the floor and write on the walls, saying “Don’t worry. I’ll clean this up later. You’ll never even know.” Those behaviors would be disrespectful. In the same way, filling my body full of garbage that I’m not really enjoying but eating “just because” is treating my body, the temple of the Holy Spirit, disrespectfully. If I lived in the acknowledgment that my body is not my own because I was bought at a price, I believe my approach to eating would be different.

I do believe in balance and that God has given us delicious foods, including sweets and alcohol, to enjoy in moderation. But I know that when I eat too many of them, my enjoyment of them diminishes. Because they’re no longer a special treat – just a daily sugar bomb.

So just as I have been reminding myself that my body does not represent who I really am when I am tempted to base my worth on appearance, I am going to try to remind myself that my body is the temple of the Holy Spirit when faced with poor food choices. “Your body is not your own, for you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”

Lord, help me to treat my body in a way that glorifies You as the only One that satisfies and that gives me life and joy, as well as energy and health for living with vitality. Health is an amazing gift and I thank You for it – help me to not to take it for granted or squander it on things that don’t satisfy.

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In other news, I signed up to participate in the Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge 2011 that starts this Saturday. (For the details, follow the challenge hyperlink.) Hopefully this will give me that extra kick of motivation to keep going on my training plan!

What helps you strike a balance in your eating habits?

How to Run with Your Dog (or Dogs)

16 Nov

Disclaimer: I wouldn’t consider myself a dog expert by any stretch of the imagination. Our dogs are mostly well-behaved not because I know what I’m doing as a dog owner/trainer but because I’ve learned through trial and error, as well as sheer stubbornness. 

So as I offer advice about how to run with your dog, keep all of that in mind.

When we got Katy back in August of 2009, it was a completely new thing to me. I had never owned a dog before, or even been around one for an extended period of time. I really felt like I was shooting from the hip and had no idea what was normal, right or good. {Yes, having dogs has been good preparation for being parents.} It helped, though, that Katy was a very well-behaved dog from the beginning (but has somehow gotten more mischievous as the years go by…).

Back then, I worked less than 10 minutes from home so I went home everyday at lunch to walk Katy. For several weeks, I tried to train her to “heel” but eventually gave up on that. I didn’t have the time or the muse for it and she didn’t pull on the leash, even though she walked in front of me. If that makes me a bad dog owner, sue me.

Since I took her on a walk at lunch, I didn’t feel the pressure to take her on runs as often as I do now but I like to combine my run with a dog walk whenever possible to conserve time, so I would usually still take her out for the first 1.5 miles, drop her at home and then finish the rest of the run. The longest run I ever did with her was 5 miles. She actually did really well.

Then we got Charlie. It was tricky just mastering how to walk 2 dogs, let alone run with them. (It helped that they were only 80 lbs combined, though.) Once Charlie was doing fairly well on the leash and I wasn’t getting tangled up very often, I started running intervals with her (and Katy) to build her endurance up. But who am I kidding? Charlie could outrun me – speed and distance – any day! Although she does have ADD – she makes it about 1.5 miles before she’s done moving in a straight line and wants to sniff everything and anything.

Around the same time we got Charlie, I started working full-time 30 minutes away from home. So now, since my post-work run is the only time the dogs get walked, I take them out for part of my run about 99% of the time.

So this is what I’ve learned from running these beastly little dogs:

1. Teach them to run on a certain side.

My dogs know to stay on the side of the road opposite traffic, or on the grassy side of the bike trail. I can’t tell you how many owners I see who let their dogs walk right down the middle of the bike path. That is very dangerous, for both the dog and the bikers. So keep your dog either in front of you, or to the opposite side.

It didn’t take my dogs very long to learn this. Dogs are smart and they learn fast. A few different methods I used were pulling them (gently) to the side when they were running in the wrong spot, or shortening their leash so that they had to run by my side (this is one reason why I think it’s best to avoid using retractable leashes). Every time they did something right, I praised them. I’ve also used intimidation – instead of actually touching them, I get up alongside them and use my body space to steer them in the direction I want them to go. I’ve done this on a busy street with Charlie, who used to always want to walk on the street. I get up alongside her now and she moves over automatically.

This is how excited they are to go on a run – they can’t stay still.

2. Bring poop bags with you.

If you think running makes humans have bowel movements, multiply that by 100 and you’ve got dogs’ bowel movements. You never know when the urge is going to hit and the last thing you want to do is to stop your run to look around for a bag. I like to tie our bags on their leashes. Easy access and if they magically don’t do #2 on our run, the bags are there for next time.

See the bag tied to the leash?

3. Figure out where the garbage cans are. 

The greenway I run on the most often has a few different garbage cans, each about a mile apart. When my dogs poo, I estimate which garbage can I’m closer to. If it’s the one I’m running toward, I’ll take the bag with me to throw away. If it’s the one I just passed (and will pass again on my way back), I put the bag on the other side of the trail and get it on the way back. That way, I’m carrying the poo bag for the least amount of time possible.

4. Expect to stop.

Katy, and especially Charlie, will stop to go to the bathroom or sniff something with no warning. There have been times I’ve yanked Katy as she squatting to pee but I try to keep one eye on the dogs so that I know when they’re going to do something. This is easier with Katy because she has a very predictable routine – she’ll move over to run in the grass with her head down, sniffing everything. After 15-20 feet, she’ll find her spot and do her thing. Charlie, on the other hand, is an enigma. Completely unpredictable. I swear she doesn’t even know she’s pooping until a turd is coming out and landing on the sidewalk (like last night). But still, I almost always stop at least once during a run for them.

5. Pay attention to your dogs.

Things to watch for are if your dogs slow down, get a burr stuck in the pad of their paw, or get tangled up in their leash somehow (Travis did this once and Katy was somehow so tangled up she had to stop running – I honestly don’t know how they do that).

If it’s really hot outside, they get overheated really fast (remember, they can’t sweat like humans do). Two leashes is enough for me to deal with without involving water and dishes, so I keep their runs short if we’re out when it’s hot. If I think they need more exercise, I take them to the dog park where there are water dishes galore. Even on short runs in the heat, though, I pay attention to them – if they’re slowing down and seem to be having a hard time, I slow down or walk with them. Completing a run is never more important than your dog’s health.

If it’s really cold and snowy outside, their paws can get really sensitive. I took Katy running a couple years ago during a 5 degree cold spell in Denver and even before we reached a mile, she was hobbling with one paw up because her paw had gotten too cold. I didn’t know what was wrong at the time so I actually ended up carrying her home the last .5 mile! I bought little booties for her but when we put them on, she walked around like Frankenstein. It was hilarious to watch but we knew she couldn’t run like that. I’d recommend either waiting until the temperature warms up or run somewhere without snow (that’s the coldest part for them).

6. Pay attention to people around you.

Dogs like to socialize and sniff strangers. This doesn’t change when you’re running. Whenever I see other dogs or other people coming, I choke up on my dogs’ leashes to keep them near me until the dogs or person have passed by. This prevents me from having to stop if when they run over to the other dogs and it prevents the person from getting freaked out by my dogs.

I was once riding my bike on the greenway and came up on a dog and owner. The owner was not paying attention and the dog was walking right down the middle of the bike path. As I passed by, the dog bit me. It must’ve gotten scared and thought I was too close but still. I wanted to ride back and give the owner a piece of my mind. But I didn’t – I kept going because the dog hadn’t actually hurt me, just ruined my favorite capri pants.

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To sum it up, running with my dogs has generally been a positive experience for me. It’s not exactly relaxing and sometimes it’s hard to settle into a rhythm when they’re stopping every 5  minutes. But it’s worth it because I love my dogs and they LOVE going on runs. And how can I say no to those faces?

Do you run with your dog(s)?

I’m leery of you, Legs.

15 Nov

Any runner knows that little aches and pains are a part of running. They usually go away on their own so they’re not really anything to get worked into a tizzy over.

Until they don’t go away.

And you have to sideline your dreams of running {insert race name}.

You even have to kiss some of your money good-bye  – not just because you registered for a race you can no longer run, but also because you need physical therapy, ice packs, foam rollers, compression tights and KT tape.

Even then, you’re not guaranteed that the pain won’t return.

That’s the dilemma I find myself in. Ever since I had to bail on the full marathon last year due to knee pain caused by IT band tightness, I haven’t trusted my legs. I want with all my heart to run the Eugene Marathon next April but to be honest, I’m not entirely confident that my legs can make it to the finish line healthy and injury-free. Every run I’ve done lately, I find myself with a nagging pain in a shin, a tightness in a hamstring, a clicking in a knee joint. Every ache and pain makes me leery. What if I can’t run this marathon either? What if I can’t prevent my IT band from getting tight? What if something else goes wrong that I can’t even predict or plan for right now?

Then I start thinking about how I’m probably the most unnatural runner ever.

Like chicrunner posted on her blog:

That picture makes me laugh every time I see it.

I know that I’m not the only runner who has ever gotten injured training for a marathon. I also know that plenty of people get injured at some point in their running career and yet go on to run marathons later. I’m also not the first runner to ever be discouraged or doubt themselves.

When you think about it, training for a marathon is really not all that different from pursuing a personal or professional dream – you take a risk and put in a butt-load of effort without knowing for sure what the end result is going to be. But you try to be smart about it. You take advice from other people who’ve blazed the trail. And you declare that quitting is not an option.

So I’m going to keep on keepin’ on with my training schedule and continue to intentionally fit in my mileage, strength training and the “good hurt” of foam rolling.

Just to make sure we’re clear, Legs:

I won’t go down without a fight.

Have you ever gotten injured during training? How did you recover mentally?

Training Recap: 11/7 – 11/13

14 Nov

Monday: Half mile repeats at Rec that almost made me throw up

Tuesday: Rest

Wednesday: 4 mile run at Rec where I discovered that Treadmills are the enemy.

Thursday: 6.87 mile bike ride at Rec in 30:00, strength training

Friday: Rest

Saturday: Raked leaves for several hours, 6 mile photography run (1:12:33, 11:59/mile)

Sunday: Rest

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For my run on Saturday, I followed my usual strategy – took the dogs for a 1.5 mile run around a lake and back, then dropped them at home and continued on for the rest of my miles. They’re just so much work to hang on to, especially when we see other dogs, that I can only handle them for 3-4 miles before I start to get really irritated.

I did the last 4.5 miles on my most frequented out and back route. So I thought I’d share pictures to show you what I see on my runs (and how ugly a Denver winter is without snow).

 I run south on our street.

East through a neighborhood that’s mostly apartments

I pass a nice little neighborhood park.

I connect to the Clear Creek Greenway.

I run on the trail behind houses, with Clear Creek a couple hundred feet to my right.

When I bring the dogs on this part, we always get barked at by some ferocious dogs that need new owners. Poor dogs.

Feeling good.

“Holy crap it’s windy out here.” There were actually white caps on the lake that I ran around with the dogs. Very windy.

I cross over Clear Creek.

In the fall, the creek is really low (and gross!) In the spring, though, this creek is ripping. Several people actually died several miles upstream this past spring because of the powerful runoff from the mountains (though they were trying to bodysurf or tube down the rapids). There are several underpasses upstream that end up completely underwater for at least a month or more.

Underpass #1 of 5. You can’t tell very well but this part of the trail goes up and down, then up and down – it’s an outlet for runoff (the creek is to the left). It’s fun to do on a bike, but not so much on a run.

This is the “jungle” part of my run. It feels a little sketchy so I only run this part when it’s broad daylight or Travis/pooches are with me.

I can see the creek through the trees. On the top of the ridge beyond the creek is a major highway.

Underpasses #2 and #3.

Underpass #4

Underpass #5

The beauty of the creek and trees is dampened by commercial buildings and truck yards. 😦

I turn around at the baseball fields.

The branch laying across the trail actually fell right as I was coming by. During this run, the trail was covered in branches like these – due to how windy it was that day, as well as the heavy wet snow that we got a couple of weeks ago that made our power go out.

Another branch down from the snow.

Finally, I’m on the home stretch again.

Another run in the {slow} books.

Do you have a favorite running route?

This is biggest thing I miss about living up in Boulder – they had AWESOME trails up there. This part of the Clear Creek Greenway is probably one of the less scenic but I like it because I don’t have to drive anywhere. As I do longer runs, though, I’ll probably try to switch things up, at least once or twice a week.

 

 

 

 

The giveaway winner is…

11 Nov

Based on the order of comments and random.org’s selection, the winner of my 400th blog post giveaway is…

One Bad Mamma Jamma!

Please email your address to me at specialkkluthe [at] gmail [dot] com and I will send you your prize! Thanks to all of you for commenting!

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A few of you asked me to talk more about what gear I like for running. It’s really not that exciting but since you asked…

Shirts

I’m pretty boring and cheap because I usually wear the tech shirts that I have gotten from either races I worked last year or done myself. My favorite shirts are the ones I got from the Heart and Sole Half Marathon last year, Denver Rock ‘n’ Roll this year, and the Steamboat Springs Oly this year. The main reason I love those is that they’re a women’s size – usually races just offer unisex sizing and the smalls are still too big. But with the women’s sizing, a medium fits perfectly. So if you’re looking for tech shirts, or doing a race that offers women’s sizes, go for the women’s if you like a tighter fit.

Of the few shirts I have actually bought for running, I really like the Under Armour shirt that I bought last year when training for the Malibu half marathon:

It’s so cute that I wear it around even when I’m not exercising and the length is perfect so that it never rides up. It’s also a wicking fabric and dries really fast, which is good when you’re hiking in the Smoky Mountains and look like this at the top:

(I was dry by the time we got back to the car.)

I also have three long-sleeve tech shirts (yes, only three) – one is Nike (and has taken a beating!), one is Alpine Design from Sports Authority (I’m wearing it in the Denver RnR picture below, along with a fleece vest that is literally falling apart), and another is from a race we put on last year (and it’s bigger, so it’s my least favorite but it still works).

Something I will be intentional about looking for on running clothes in the future is reflective detailing. My New Balance Capris (below) and Alpine Design shirt both have reflective elements and when I was wearing them on a little-too-late run with Travis the other night, it was nice knowing that I was more visible to cars.

Shorts/Pants

The bottoms that I wear most often for running are spandex shorts and pants – like the Adidas shorts I wore for the half marathon above (similar to these) or the 2XU compression tights I wore for the Denver Rock ‘n’ Roll.

There are a few things that I’m not thrilled about with the shorts and tights – the shorts don’t stay completely down (they would need to either be tighter like tri shorts or have elastic at the bottom of each leg) and the 2XU compression tights, while amazing and worth the money, are a little short. Instead of being full-length pants, they’re about 5 inches above my ankle. Not a huge deal, just a little annoying. But both options beat the feeling of shorts riding up! And there’s much less chance of chafing when you’re wearing form-fitting clothing for long workouts – always a good thing.

My latest obsession is the pair of New Balance capris I got for my birthday.

I love those capris. They’re perfect for fall runs in the 40s and 50s where you want something more than shorts but don’t quite need pants either. There is a pocket on the inside front, as well as the back outside. I stored my car key in the back pocket for a run once and it actually worked really well.

I also have a pair of Nike DriFit pants that I found on clearance when I first started running in 2006 (they’re still good!) and a pair of Puma running pants that I got out of lost and found last year (hey, no one had claimed them!).

Shoes

My mantra with shoes is “Don’t mess with a good thing.” So for the past 3 years, I’ve worn the Nike Zoom Structure Triax. These were the blue ones I had before I got pink ones:

Now the shoes are all fancy.

Sports Bras

As far as sports bras go, I am still in search of one that actually impresses me with how well it holds the girls down. I’ve heard raving reviews of Moving Comfort bras – to the order of “They don’t bounce at all!” Well, I beg to differ. The Juno bra that I bought did do more than an average bra, and I did wear it for an Olympic triathlon and do fine but still, there was bounce-age. I tried on the Fiona bra as well and it was laughable how much it didn’t do. For $52, you think they could do a little better than that. One day, I might check out the granny bras from Enell. But that day is not today.

Heart Rate Monitor

The heart rate monitor I have is the Polar F6 Green Tea.

I’ve been very pleased with it – my only regret is that I can’t record splits. If/when I get a new heart rate monitor, I will make sure to get one with that capability.

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Anyway, if you haven’t noticed, I don’t spend a ton of money on running gear… I would like to because Nike and Under Armour have some seriously cute stuff. But I only have so much money to divide between race fees, racing equipment, and athletic apparel so I have to look at my running wardrobe as something I accumulate over time. The next thing I would like to get is a jacket for running in the fall, winter and rain.

So now you’re up to date on my running gear. Did I mention Body Glide is a runner’s best friend ever? That stuff is awesome. Buy it. Use it. You’ll thank me later.

What’s your favorite piece of running gear? 

Treadmills are the enemy.

10 Nov

So last night didn’t go quite according to plan but I did get my 4-mile run in. My plan was to get home at 4:30, feed the dogs and quickly change into my running clothes, run 4 miles, change out of my running clothes, grab salad stuff and leave for care group by 5:45.

I got home around 4:50, let the dogs out, and then fed them. While they were eating, I started to change into my running clothes. Charlie came into the bedroom after she was finished eating and jumped on the bed. Not even 30 seconds later, she jumped down and started to head out to the living room but I didn’t want her to pee on the carpet and figured she’d be able to wait the 3 minutes it would take me to finish dressing. So I called her back in and she jumped back up on the bed. Then I noticed that the bedspread was a weird color – were her paws dirty from being outside?

Charlie moved out of the way and I realized that it wasn’t dirt – it was pee. She had just peed on our bed. A lot. And as I yelled, “Charlie, no!” she got scared and jumped to another section of the bed and peed there too.

Just great.

“Charlie, I don’t have time for this!”

I put the dogs outside, pulled the comforter, sheets, and mattress cover off the bed and then thought about what to do. I couldn’t wash the comforter in our washing machine. I couldn’t put a different comforter on our bed because that one was also dirty (Charlie also peed on that one and we disgustingly didn’t notice for a while). So I had to scrap my run for a trip to the laundromat.

{source}

I had been planning to go there this weekend anyway, to wash our sleeping bags and rugs from elk hunting, and the comforter and duvet cover that was already dirty. Now I just had more to wash. I still wanted to try to make it to care group, which started at 7 (we eat dinner together at 6 and I already let the leader know I wasn’t coming for that), so I hastily loaded everything into the car, put the dogs in the laundry room and headed to the gas station across from the laundromat for some cash.

I got the cash, drove across the street to the laundromat, and made 4 trips to bring in all the stuff I had. As I looked around for the quarter machine, I realized I had forgotten soap and this ghetto laundromat didn’t sell any. So I loaded the washers with the stuff I was pretty sure no one would steal (I mean, who wants bed comforters riddled with pee or extremely dirty rugs?), put the sleeping bags and linens back into the car, drove the mile back home, got laundry detergent and went back.

After all of the washers were started, I realized I would need more cash to start the dryers (is it just me or do laundromats rob you blind?), so I went back home to drop off the soap and grab dryer sheets and a laundry basket, brought the dogs with me, and went back to the gas station another time to get gas and more cash. Then I went back across the street to the laundromat, transferred what was done washing to the dryers, then brought the dogs back home. I don’t know why I brought them in the first place – I guess because I felt bad that they had been locked in the laundry room all day and they hadn’t gotten to go on their run? (Although I told Charlie that she really did it to herself.)

Travis called then so I asked him to pick up Subway on his way home while I went back to the laundromat to finish putting stuff in the dryers. So he did that while I went back, yet again. With everything in the dryers, I hung out for a bit reading my book until the comforters and rugs were dry and Travis was home with the subs. I put that stuff in the car, drove home, ate, unloaded the car, then Travis and I both went back to the laundromat to get the sleeping bags and linens.

By the time we had everything in the car, it was already 7:05. All of the linens and one sleeping bag were crammed into the laundry basket and some of them weren’t quite dry (I should never dry the duvet covers with sheets, but I always do because I’m too lazy – and in this case, cheap – to do two loads). So we just decided to not go to care group. It took us about an hour to get everything unloaded, dry, and folded or on the bed. Finally, around 8:15, I decided to go to the rec to run, since I wasn’t going to care group.

I was actually kind of looking forward to running on the treadmill, because somehow, when I read about other people running on the treadmill, it sounds nice. Just a nice little run on the treadmill. But I got on the treadmill and before I even hit .5 mile, I was bored. And staring at myself in the mirror, since I can’t handle looking at stationary things when running – my mind just can’t handle the conflicting signals. Running. means. moving. forward. Can. not. stare. at. a. wall.

I managed to make it to 2 miles, but then I just couldn’t take it anymore. Treadmills just make me hate running. I don’t understand how people run on them consistently and for so many miles. I realized that I would much rather run 100 circles around a 1/10 mile track than do 10 miles on a treadmill. And I swear that my legs/shins/knees felt achier from running on the treadmill than they do normally. AND I was running at a 10:30 pace at 1.0 incline on the treadmill and thought I was going to DIE. I got on the track and ran the same pace comfortably.

So moral of the story: Treadmills are the enemy.

But I digress…

I finished my 4 mile run in 43:21, stretched, went home and crawled into my nice, clean bed.

Do you like running on the treadmill? 

And the marathon winner is…

9 Nov

Since work is still pretty slow, I used the majority of last Friday to compare, via detailed spreadsheet, every marathon I could find in the months of March, April, May and June of next year that fit my criteria of being either a big race (5,000+ marathoners) or well-supported by spectators, and being in a location that could double as our 5-year wedding anniversary trip. So I looked up airfare, race reviews, course information, number of participants and local attractions. The (most likely) winner?

The Eugene Marathon on April 29.

Eugene, Oregon, is about 2 hours from Portland and even though it’s a smaller marathon (about 2,000 finishers last year), the race drew 8,000 athletes with the other events and since running is so popular in this city nicknamed Track Town USA, a lot of spectators come out to support. The course is flat and beautiful from what I’ve read. And Oregon is a state that neither Travis nor I have ever been to, but always wanted to visit. I mean, how can you not get excited about the food cart craze?

So I have adjusted both my base building and marathon training plans (updated on this page), since this race is a month earlier than the one I thought about doing in Minnesota. It’s a long {and boring} story about why I decided against the race in MN but it involves a wedding, a bunch of hills and a lack of both runners and spectators.

But I’ve encountered a little hiccup in my marathon goal: a lack of motivation.

It’s a bad sign when I can barely muster up enough willpower to force myself out for a 3 mile run. What is going to happen to me when I have to do 8, 9, even 10 miles on a work day? I’m serious. How am I going to manage that?

I’ve thought about running during lunch (although the max there will be probably be about 5 miles, since I’m slow and lunch can’t last forever). I’ve thought about doing 2-a-days and splitting those long runs into morning and evening runs, or lunchtime and evening runs (I think that would work fine because I’d still have my continuous long run on the weekend). I’ve even thought about breaking up the mileage between the track and the dreadmill treadmill at my gym. Because I don’t think I could stand to run a full 10 miles, either in 100 circles or in place.

I need to dip into my reserve of this:

I’m trying to not think about how much I don’t want to go on a 4 mile run after work today. I’d rather go lay on the couch and stuff my face with leftover corn bread. But that’s what I did last night so… I should probably go.

The deal I’m making with myself is that I have to at least get all my planned mileage and weight training in. If I want to skip my cute little cardio workouts, fine. But no skipping runs. And no skipping weights. Because I am not going to get injured this time. Remember?

The cupcake image reminds me of a shirt idea I had for the marathon – Will Run for Cake. Which turned out to not be such a unique idea after all… I’ll have to change mine to say something like:

That’s a million dollar idea right there.

I like this shirt too (from gypsyrunner.com):

I saw a girl at the Malibu Half last year that was wearing that shirt and I immediately thought, “That’s the shirt I need!” But until I saw them at the Denver Rock ‘n’ Roll expo, I had only been able to find the shirt in cotton. Apparently, those who run like turtles don’t sweat.

Remember that you still have time to enter my 400th blog post giveaway!

How do you stay motivated to train or exercise?

Have you ever done 2-a-days?