An Old Love, A New Challenge

October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 5:37 pm

Quick update!

I kept up with my running last week. I didn’t get as many miles in as I would have liked, but not too bad.

Monday – Cardio workout video

Tuesday – 4 miles

Wednesday – 2 miles

Thursday – Jillian 30 Day Shred and 10 minute Abs

Friday – Rest

Saturday – 8 miles at 9:21 pace! My right hamstring was pretty tight, but otherwise it was a good run!

Today is a rest day for my legs and I’ll get back at it tomorrow! I’m actually really enjoying my training right now so hopefully that continues. I really have nothing else to do where I’m at so that might be a factor in my feelings about it!

Enjoy Halloween!


October 26, 2010

Welcome to the South

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 12:11 am

I’m back! Horray! I am officially moved in down south and learning a new way of life. It is definitely different down here.

We were supposed to have internet in our apartments…turns out we don’t. So, my internet use is very limited for the time being. So, here’s a quick update!

Friday – no run. I drove the rest of the way and was very, very sick. I didn’t have a voice and could barely breathe.

Saturday – no run. I still was feeling pretty rough. There was no way I could knock out a long run feeling the way I did.

Sunday – Run! Yay! I ran 7.05 miles in 68 minutes. A little slower than I would have liked, but I was/am still sick and didn’t want to push it. I also had to run in a neighborhood that wasn’t very conducive to running long distances. Lots of twists and turns, in and out of courts, up and down streets, etc.

Today – no run! My chest is pretty tight today. Today is a scheduled no run day though. I did a 40 min Beach Body workout video with some friends though!

Sad news – The gym at work is lame. The other gyms around here are lame and expensive. The apartment gym is VERY lame. So, workout videos and running will probably be my life.

That is all for now! Goodnight!

October 21, 2010


Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 11:17 pm

So, this week is a little crazy. I’m still on target for the most part though! I am making the big move this week, so I spent yesterday packing after work and today and tomorrow are driving days. Of course, I’ve gotten sick in the midst of this. I sound like a frog and my chest is super tight. I’ve been trying to fight it off for about a week, but it has come full force.

I didn’t run yesterday because of my lack of breathing ability and my lack of packing that I had completed. Whoops!

But, I ran tonight at the hotel. It was actually a pretty good run. I definitely probably sounded like I was having an asthma attack, but I made it through 4.5 miles in 38:29. I’ll take it! ๐Ÿ™‚

Tomorrow is a scheduled rest day. I might try to make up my 3 miles from Wednesday if I have time, but I will be driving and moving in so I’m not sure how the day will pan out.


October 18, 2010

Day 2…

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 11:18 pm

I was feeling pretty good when I woke up and went about my day. In my training, I’ve saved Mondays as rest/strength days. Usually Mondays are hard for me to get back into the swing of things so I figure most of the time I’ll rest. If I don’t rest, I’ll do a little strength building or light conditioning, but no real running.

I did a little light conditioning tonight. Since I’m moving very soon, I don’t have cable hooked up in my place so I have to go to the gym or the clubhouse to watch TV. I’m slightly addicted to Dancing with the Stars so I had to go over to the clubhouse to watch. My plan was to be a bum and sit on the couch and watch. However, other people had claimed the couches, so I was forced to go to the gym. I ended up walking 4 miles at a 5% incline and then doing some lunges while watching. It wasn’t strenuous by any means, but kept me busy while enjoying a favorite show! ๐Ÿ™‚ Now that I’ve sat down for the evening, I can definitely feel some tightness in my hamstrings so I’ll be stretching those ย big time the rest of the week!

October 17, 2010

…why yes, I am back.

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 9:04 pm

I’m pretty sure my last post talked about how I was done with running and especially done blogging about it. Well, I’ve got the itch again. My job is requiring me to do a rotation in Mississippi for the next few months and I’ve been looking at things to keep me busy during that time. Somehow, I came across two races and decided I’m going to try to run them. I should have started seriously training about a month ago, but that obviously didn’t happen. I’ve run a couple miles a few times a week for the past few weeks, but nothing serious. So…maybe blogging about it will help me get serious (that is a big “maybe”). It may also give me something else to do while I’m down in the middle of nowhere.

Here are the goals:

Mississippi Gulf Coast Half Marathon (Nov 27) OR Old Man River Half Marathon (Dec 19)


Mardi Gras Rock and Roll Marathon (Feb 13)

No time goals for either race – I just want to finish. I knew I wouldn’t be satisfied with just the half marathon, so I’m going for the full. I figure there is no better time in my life to do it than now. We’ll see.

Today: Ran 5.7 miles in a little under 51 minutes. I was trying to run 6 but got lost in one of the neighborhoods I was in and cut a turn out of it. Oh well, not bad.

Here’s to another challenge! ๐Ÿ™‚


February 15, 2010

I did it!

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 3:29 pm

So, let me begin this post by saying, I reached my goal! ๐Ÿ™‚ I successfully completed the 5 Points of Life Half Marathon in Gainesville, FL on February 14, 2010 with a time of 1:53:58.8! I was 18th of the females in my age group, 70th in females overall, and 190th out of 609 total runners! Crazy!

Race day was great! I only got 4 hours of sleep the night before and it was 30 degrees outside when I left my apartment at 6:20am. I had to scrape frost off my windshield with my debit card (I’m becoming aย true Floridian). When I got to the site of the starting line, I saw two of the marines that used to recruit on campus who apparently just heard about the race last weekend and decided to run it. They both finished way ahead of me–not fair. I also saw a few others that I knew–super encouraging! ๐Ÿ™‚ We started the race at the same time as the full marathon so it was a semi slow start because of the huge crowd. After we got out on the main road, it was smooth sailing. At mile 2, I started to have to pee. Not good! Around mile 5, I got the best surprise ever–my parents! They came up to cheer me on! At mile 7, I was pretty sure I was going to have to stop to use the bathroom or pee my pants…but managed to push through. (Sorry, probably TMI…but true!) Around miles 10-11, the route took us through campus…but not in a fun way for me. It was too much winding and up and down hills. I definitely enjoyed the regular roads better. That is probably because I trained on pretty straight roads–not a lot of turning. I just felt like I wasn’t getting anywhere on those 2 miles. I saw my parents for the last time right after I passed the Mile 12 sign. The way the route was made, I knew there was no way they would make it to the finish line before me. I was right. I beat them there! But…because I was not expecting anyone to be there to watch me at all, not having anyone at the finish wasn’t really disappointing. Tyler (one of the Marines) was there and was trying to be encouraging. Fail. I don’t handle encouragement well from a guy who can’t remember the last time he ran over 5 miles and still finishes way before me! ๐Ÿ™‚ Overall, it was a great run! Even though it was cold in the morning, it was perfect race weather.

Favorite part about the day? Along the way, there were signs to “motivate us.” It was Valentine’s Day. For those of you who do not know, I am one of those bitter Valentine’s Day haters. Of course, many signs had something to do with love. First one I saw–“Your โค <3’s you.” Thanks LifeSouth, I’m sure it does–but nottttt so encouraging to me. ๐Ÿ™‚ I did enjoy reading some of the clever signs that were made for the runners though. IF there is a next time, I will make sure I have supporters with signs! ๐Ÿ™‚

So…a few things I’ve learned in the past few months of training:

1. I really enjoy running. I am a pretty competitive person…but not really good at anything. Someone is always better than me and I get frustrated easily because of that. But…running is a little different. It is a competition with myself. Yes, I wanted to beat other people on that race yesterday. No, I did not enjoy when people passed me. But, at the end, I was really excited because I had done something that I have never done before. AND…even though I finished saying “I will probably never do this again…”–there was a small part of me that was saying, “Next time I will do this and this and I can finish faster!” Running has good days and bad days…but overall, it is a LOT less frustrating to me than any other sport I’ve ever done–competitive or recreational.

2. With all of that love for running that I just talked about, you may call me a hypocrite…but…I think have decided that about 7-8 miles max is plenty…after that, I get bored. I might enjoy longer runs more if I had a running partner or two (hint, ย hint–any takers?). The half was perfect for this because I only trained up to 11 miles and those really long runs only happened once a week. Otherwise, the shorter runs are much more up my alley!

3. Training for my first race in my last year of school while working and trying to find a career was probably not the ideal plan. My training was sometimesย sporadic because of exams, wisdom teeth, sickness, overwhelming life obligations.

4. With number 3 being said, I don’t believe there will ever be an “ideal” time for training. Life happens. Something will always be in the way of training and you really just have to suck it up and work through it. I wish I would have not let training go by the wayside so much because of life’s interferences. Coulda, woulda, shoulda…

5. Cheerleaders on race day are IMPORTANT. Seeing my parents and other people I knew along the way was probably one of the most motivating things about the day. Yes, the excitement of the race and the other runners around and strangers on the road cheering were great motivation, but having people who knew me and were there for me personally meant so much more! So–if you are running your first race, I encourage you to make sure you have cheerleaders! If you’re running near me, I’ll come cheer for you!

And last, but not least, 6. I am a much better blog reader than I am a blog writer. As anyone who has read this blog knows, I am TERRIBLE at updating this. So, this may be my last post for a while. I’ll still be reading blogs as I do every day when I should be paying attention in my classes…but writing them is just not my thing.

Thanks for all of the support in this training process. It was a great run and I’m so glad I did it!

January 12, 2010

Getting Back Into a Routine

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 12:14 am

Oh, hello there blogging world! It has been a while. Good thing I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions or I would have failed miserably.

Time to play catch up. I didn’t actually run much after I posted last. I traveled to the west coast of Florida for Jenny’s bridal shower and then back to Gainesville with her. She stayed for a few days with me and so my routine was totally thrown off…as if I had one at that point.

I pretty much spent last week trying to play catch up and get settled back into school/start working/getting back into running to be ready for the race in a month! I ran a few times but nothing major. Yesterday, I ran a little over 7 miles at an 8:41 pace. ๐Ÿ™‚ Horray! All hope is not lost! However, today I feel like I bruised my right knee. So what do I do? Naturally, I go run stadiums.

I think I’m giving myself yet another challenge. Monday and Friday are going to be stadium days. The routine is to run a lap around the stadium and then up the stairs. That is .37 miles around and 148 stairs to the top. Tonight, I intended to just finish 6 reps of that. However, from now on, I want to see how many I can do in 45 minutes. It took me 36 minutes and 23 seconds to do it tonight. I added in half a lap of warm up and half a lap cool down as well. So, tonight I ran 2.57 miles around the stadium and up and down 888 stairs. Whew!

I am going to use Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to run low/medium mileage. Saturdays are still long runs and Sundays are crosstraining.

Also, it is back to Jillian…every morning. I have lost touch with her. I will get up and do her 5 out of 7 days of every week. Ideally those days will be Monday-Friday. My 7:25 class is not conducive to that plan…but I’ll make it work.

Ok, I think that is all for the updates. I am much better about updating dailymile with workouts because that doesn’t require writing. I promise I’m not as big of a slacker as I seem on here.


December 31, 2009

New Year’s Eve–The End of 2009!

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 7:49 pm

Wow! Is it already the end of 2009? Crazy! I remember when everyone was freaking out about the world ending 10 years ago tonight. I also remember starting college 3 and a half years ago thinking graduating in 2010 was sooo far away. Now I’m wishing the next 6 months would slow down a little bit!

Anyway, now to what I’m really supposed to blog about! I am back into training! Yay! I had my one week check up yesterday and my doctor asked if I had any questions. I asked when I could run again. He cleared me to run! Of course, in all of my excitement, I forgot to ask all of the important questions about my stitches and foods but that is ok! ๐Ÿ™‚ I can run! And that is exactly what I did!

He told me to start slower than I was going before surgery and to expect a little bleeding and more pain. So, I ran 5 miles in 48 minutes. It was a little slower than normal. It felt great while I was running…afterward, not so much. I could feel my heart throbbing in my jaw for about an hour. But–no blood! ๐Ÿ™‚ Totally worth it.

Today, I was a little stiff when I woke up. I went for one really long walk (2 hours) and one shorter walk (about 20 min) this past week so I wouldn’t go absolutely crazy. Other than that, I pretty much sat on the couch for a week. So, being stiff after going back out and running 5 miles was no surprise. I went over to the beach to run again this afternoon. I didn’t really have a plan–bad idea. I ran about a mile and then decided to do some speed work. I did a slow jog and then sprinted the chorus of each song. I made it 4 songs. Rihanna’s “Shut Up and Drive” just about killed me. I turned around and jogged back. It was 40 minutes total but I didn’t check the actual distance.

It seems to me that the common theme today/tomorrow is to become very philosophical, have high hopes, and create great goals for 2010. I’m not trying to follow that trend. I don’t think that reading and writing “2010” instead of “2009” will change anything regarding my thoughts, motivation, determination, or habits. I’ve been reminded constantly throughout this past week that each day could be the end of me (as I should be reminded daily). Sounds morbid, but true. So, at the risk of being philosophical, I would encourage whoever may be reading this to stop making resolutions that you will start tomorrow/next year. (Tomorrow is next year…crazy! ๐Ÿ™‚ ) Instead, stop talking about what you plan to change and begin acting upon those changes today…or…be content in who God has made you to be! (novel idea, right? ๐Ÿ™‚ )

That is it for 2009! Happy New Year! Be safe tonight!

6 weeks til race day!

December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Eve!

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 4:19 pm

When people told me training around the holidays was hard, they weren’t lying! I thought I was more disciplined than this…but routine goes out the window during this time of year. As if finals, graduation, and Christmas weren’t enough, I had all 4 wisdom teeth extracted yesterday. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Needless to say, exercise isn’t even in my vocabulary right now and I’m not exactly sure when I’ll be able to run again. I was hoping only 2-3 days off but recovery isn’t happening like I thought it would either.

I do have some exciting news though! I was a slacker on Saturday and Sunday with graduation and coming home. On Monday, I set out on a run that I guessed was about 6 miles—it happened to be 9 miles! I ran it in an hour and 21 minutes. That is a little under 9 min/mile pace!!! I was pretty excited and actually felt like I had pushed myself!

Tuesday I went over to the beach to run but only did 30 minutes. It is hard to judge my miles on the beach unless I start at specific streets. It was also getting dark and it was freezing. I figured 30 minutes was fine after the awesome run I had on Monday! I came home and did Jillian Michaels Level 2 after my run and called it a day.

Like I said, I had surgery on Wednesday morning and have been in bed or on the couch since then so we’ll see how fast it heals!

Merry Christmas everyone!

December 19, 2009

Almost Graduation!

Filed under: Uncategorized — akstracy @ 1:37 am

I intended for this week to be a boring week with lots of time to run–not the case. I did finish all my runs on my training plan though!

Sunday: I cycled 20 minutes and ran a mile.

Monday: Jillian Michaels Level 2.

Tuesday: I ran 4:52 outside at a pace of 8:16! Fastest run so far! Yay!

Wednesday: Nothing. Fail.

Thursday: 5.9 miles outside at an 8:53 pace. Not bad.

Friday: 4 miles on the treadmill. I did 2 in 17:12 and had to stop to potty and then did 2 more in 16:35. I haven’t put them in DailyMile to figure out the pace yet! ๐Ÿ™‚ However, I ran them on a treadmill and walked a little to warm up and then ran at an 8:20 pace. At the end of the second set, I increased my pace to 7:57.

Big news! I got new running shoes! My parents came up today for graduation (tomorrow) and we went Christmas shopping. I got a pair of jeans and running shoes! Talk about super motivation! ๐Ÿ™‚ My dad also got me a knee brace because I’ve been complaining about it hurting. It is really useful when I forget to put it on to run! Not! It is not comfortable and I don’t think I’ll use it so it is probably going back..but oh well! ย I actually having been looking at a different pair for a while but decided to try all of them on in Sports Authority and ended up with different ones. I have pretty wide feet and these seem to fit them best! I enjoyed my run in them tonight! New Balance 769! ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t know how to post pictures, but here is a link to see them!

That is all for this week! ย Graduation tomorrow morning! ๐Ÿ™‚

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