Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Opportunity: Step Out - Walk to Stop Diabetes

I run a lot of races for a lot of different reasons. Mostly it's the experience, but sometimes it's the cause.

This time, it's the cause.

Mom at about 17 years old
 On Saturday, 23 November, my family and I will be participating in Step Out: Walk to Stop Diabetes. Our team is Mimi's Butterflies, in honor of my mom.

My mom, whose grandchildren called Mimi, was a loving and generous woman. Every Thanksgiving, she set a place at the table for someone who might not otherwise have anyone to share the holiday. She adored all shades of pink and had a thing for butterflies. She also developed Type 2 diabetes later in life and had many health complications. She passed away May 2005, and I miss her every day.

On 23 November, I run for her.

Mom and me (I think I was about 25)
I will also run for family and friends who have diabetes as well--many who have made changes in their lifestyle to control their condition. In a way, I run for myself too--I am well-aware of my genetic inheritance; I started walking (and now running) on a regular basis to maintain mental health and avoid larger health problems.

That's another reason why I chose a butterfly for this outing's symbol. It's not just that my mom loved them (and she did), but I believe in the Butterfly Effect--seemingly small changes can make a big difference.

Here's a little something you can do:

1. You can donate to my page.
2. You can donate to our team.
3. You can join our team--there are two locations in Houston (we will be downtown), but there is also an option to join us "virtually" and walk wherever you are. Butterflies are optional.
4. You can make a little change in your life--go for a walk, give up soda for the day, meditate for 1 minute, make a piece of art ...
5. You can make a little change in someone else's life--read to a child, give someone a ride, bring lunch to someone, listen to a hurting friend ...

Whatever you choose, every flutter of a butterfly's wings counts. Even an "attagirl" is appreciated.

And thank you. Very much.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

It Happens

Defy the Blerch every single day.
Horrid, horrible, icky, terrible attempt at a run today. Just bad. Just plain bad.

I got a hint it wouldn't be the greatest when I noticed how hot it was. When I checked later, it was 77 degrees, 100% humidity; heat index made it feel like 88 degrees.

Tried to keep it slow and steady, despite the distraction of many dogs out and my Luna in a social mood. Lots of folks doing landscape as well, which translates into Leafblowers Are Scary to Large White Wolfdogs.

At about mile 2, after dog spooked yet again and I felt vaguely like vomiting, I decided to check how much time I had left before cool down. Turns out my app had turned off in mid-workout. At that point, I just gave up and walked the last mile home.

The first inclination, of course, is to wallow in FAIL. Maybe it's that I've had to deal with a lot of butthurt this week, but I just didn't see the point in beating myself up. My body knows the mileage, and everybody has a bad run now and again. The point is to lace up and go again.

And maybe program Runkeeper instead of using the app. Where there's a will, there's a hack.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Season Change

A week later, and I'm still feeling post-race let-down. I was a bit directionless for a while. But thanks to Fall finally arriving and a new short-term goal, I'm feeling back on track.

Rather than push forward toward a half right now, I decided to work on my duration. I'm already signed up for a 5K at the beginning of November, and I plan to run that non-stop. I'd like to stretch myself to continuously running a 10K as well, and a Thanksgiving race is perfect for that (added benefit: eating with reduced guilt).

I'm using a free C210K app that just adds time to each run. I know ideally I should be incorporating speed-play, but right now I just like the idea of settling into long, easy, mindless runs for a while. I started this morning at the beginning of week 7 in the program, which is 25 minutes continuous running. Since this app is just a timer rather than using GPS, I didn't get instant feedback. Instead, I merely enjoyed the moment--finding Orion in the sky, letting thoughts ebb and flow, feeling my breath and body regulate itself. Very slow, but very sustainable and renewing.

Yes, a part of me is saying I should push myself more. But after these months of recovery and hard work, I'm glad to return to the joy of running. I'll be training for a half-marathon soon enough.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

September in Review

Miles covered: 57.9


If I were travelling from Bag End to Rivendell, we would have past the Stone Trolls and met Glorfindel.

Race: Katy 10

I can't express how glad I am to have that elephant of a race out of my head. I'm still sore and a cold has settled in, but the memories are starting to shift from the pain to the pride. It's a little like theatre. Or childbirth.

I'm not sure in what direction my training will go right now. I had wanted to repeat the very first race I had run a year ago, but it appears they are not having it this year. None of the races this coming month really appeal to me. I do still have a virtual to knock out, so that may be that.

I have signed up for the Firefly Run in November; I'm going to run as Jayne Cobb (ba-dum-bump, nerds!). Ideally, I'd like to run the whole thing; but if it's like the Electric Run, I might get slowed down by people taking pictures with the light elements. I certainly don't expect a PR, but it should be fun.

As for December, I had planned a destination race, but circumstances are getting in the way. If things work out, I'm tempted to run a half marathon on my birthday weekend. But it's really just wait and see.

Feeling powerful? Maybe a little.