Wednesday, February 24, 2010

i'm a good work

I run around the lake in my town a lot. At least once a week. And each time I do it, whether it's the only time that day or the third, I am struck by how far I've come. Physically, of course, but in other ways as well.

It never fails when I'm running for my mind to turn back to "that girl" in grade school or middle school or high school that didn't like herself, that wasn't sure of who she was, that didn't understand what was so wrong with her. It's taken a lot of years, a lot of hard conversations, a lot of tears and pain to begin to understand who I am and who God has made me to be. And I gotta tell you, I like this girl that God has made me to be!

I've come to appreciate that I am a softhearted doesn't make me weak, it makes me empathetic. I like to make people laugh, not to deflect them from laughing at me (anymore) but because they are laughing with me...finally. :) I like to listen to people, help people, make others be better versions of themselves. These are all gifts that God has given me and for a while, growing up, I had no idea how to use them. Thank goodness He wasn't finished with me and continued to reveal Himself and His purpose for my life to me.

The best part is He's not done. I'm not finished. There's better stuff...a better me to come! Last night this verse replayed over and over in my mind as I was thinking back to the girl I used to be: Phil 1:6 "being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." I am confident of that promise because I've been witness to it for 30 years in my own life.

So, the girl who couldn't run to save her life 6 years ago completed 6.65mi last night in 1:01:59. That's 9:19min/miles. :) It was my first run since last Thursday because I've been battling some crazy head cold. I'm still sick but with the Half coming up on Sunday, I know I've just got to push thru it and rest after the 28th.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

it's all relative

I was thinking today that a majority of things in this life are relative to who you are and where you are in your life. And that applies to runners and non-runners as well.

Case in point: if I were to tell you that it was warm today, would you believe me? (those of you who are in my general location, that is.) I went out for a run around 12:30pm today and was warm for the first time in a while at the beginning of the run. The sun was shining, the temp was over 40! Only half a mile in, I began thinking maybe I was over dressed! I had on my running tights (which, honestly, I swore I would never I can not run in the winter with out them!), a longsleeved shirt (very thin), my windbreaker, gloves and earband. Not over dressed but thoughtfully dressed - considering it's still February!

Thankfully, it was a bit windy today so that made my get-up fitting and I ended up not being too warm but just right. Just as I never thought I'd be in tights, I never thought I'd use the words "thankfully" and "windy" in the same sentence...

Anywho. If you recall in a post I made just after New Years, I resolved not to feel guilty if I miss a day of running. Well, friends, I have missed 4 this week. Sunday was an off day so that doesn't count (a friend and I did 10.02mi on Saturday), Monday: I just didn't make time, Tuesday: I was sick and Weds: again, didn't make time. I will tell you I began to have the faintest twinge of guilt because the half is only a week and a half away! But, I realized that it's okay. I'm not going to not be able to run just because I've had an off week. Last week was a 35mi week and I'm thinking that's what made me come down with a cold... I need to be a bit more careful to not over do it, it would seem.

So, today, with this silly head cold making me feel like junk, I figured a noontime run would be perfect. And it was. As I mentioned before, it was sunny and warm (relatively...). I got 5.45 mi in with a time of 51.02 (that's 9:21min/miles!!!!). Distance and time are also relative...just sayin'.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

quick update

A quick post to update my previous post. I neglected to tell you, dear readers, about Monday night's experience at the gym. I stepped on the treadmill (once one was free...and rebooted) and ran 4mi with NO SHIN PAIN!!!! On the TREADMILL!!! As you can tell, this is very exciting news. It must have been simply staying off the thing for over a week that was the trick to healing the shin splints. Here's praying they're gone for good!

Last night was a 12miler and boy, was it rough! When I began it was 40 deg. The first lap around the lake was great, uneventful. The second lap was a bit harder and I tried to mentally prepare myself for "just one more time around." The third lap was rough. I was exhausted, it was cold - the temp fell 10 deg and with me being a sweat monster, I was wet and that made me even colder. I struggled through it, even walking a few times and ended up with 11.71mi in 1:56:45, just under 10/min miles. I do believe that part of the problem was that I did not eat well at all yesterday. I hardly had any protein all day and just didn't eat a whole lot. So, by the time I got home, not only could I not move my hands (they felt just like they did when I finished the was weird), but my stomach was very upset and queasy.

I felt much better after a hot shower and a good dinner and a big glass of milk. No miles scheduled for today, instead a giant snowstorm is supposedly heading our way. Tomorrow I'll try to get 5 or 6 in at the gym in preparation for Saturday's 10miler with a friend. Big mileage week!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

3 hrs of sleep

This past weekend was our High School Winter Retreat! It was awesome and sooooo much fun. I went up early on Friday to help get everything organized and set up. And once the kids arrived off the buses there was a crazy amount of energy and fun in the totally set the right tone for the weekend. The speaker/worship leader was great and the kids really connected well with him. The main theme of the retreat was Standing Firm based on Hebrews 6:19. I believe the kids really got it and took hold of that message and that God was changing lives over the course of the three days.

Now, I am used to going on retreats. I've been on a great number of Middle School retreats and other various ones for adults. However, a High School retreat is unlike any other in regards to "lights out." Saturday night, especially! I had to leave the retreat early Sunday morning in order to be back to Grace for Middle School as the parents were joining us. So, I went to bed "early" around 1am. The 5 girls in my room, however, stayed up until 3:30 chatting with friends in the common area. Being the person that I am, I couldn't fully fall asleep until all my girls had come back and they were in bed. Therefore, I didn't fall asleep until 3:30am. And my alarm went off at 6:30am. It was rough getting up and driving 2hrs back to Grace. In fact one person said to me, "Ang, are you okay? You look awful!" Gee, thanks.

All this to say, I did not get my longest run in this past weekend. I needed to get 12 in and it just didn't happen. So, tonight the plans I have include going for a 12miler, shower, dinner and LOST. Sounds like a great night to me...

Just two weeks from Saturday is the half marathon! I am getting very excited to run with lots of other people again. I haven't done a race since the beginning on's been quite a while. It will be so fun to have lots of friends there too. Can't wait!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

marathon man returns

Guess who I ran with (well, okay, behind!) on Tuesday night?!?!?! You'll never guess....okay, you will because it's the title of this post. Marathon man! He came up behind me just as the pretty side of the lake was starting and I kept pace with him until I turned off to run through town. Kinda made my night. :)

For those of you who don't know about marathon man, he is someone I see every late winter/early spring running the lake. I don't see him any other time of year. He is very slender, light on his feet and fast. For these reasons I believe that he is training for the Boston Marathon each spring. I could be totally wrong...but each spring, there he is. This year is no exception.

Another funny thing happened as I was just beginning my run. I was in town and a mother was trying to get her two children out of her van, the younger one (maybe she was 2?) was first. She was walking down the sidewalk, sweet as could be, while her mom was trying to get her older sister out of the car and keep an eye on her as well. The mom kept saying, "Bethany, stay here!" Finally the older sister (prob around 4) says, "Bethany Marie, you come back here!" just as I was passing the scene. Well, Bethany Marie thought it would be fun to join me in my run so she started running after me! I heard the mom say behind me, "No, you can't run with her!!" Too funny.

Now onto the training update/shin splint update: Tuesday night was GREAT!! I got all ready to go to the gym after work but changed my mind when I realized how nice it was outside (this is relative, I know. By nice here I mean, 30deg, no wind). When I got home I quickly changed my clothes again and went for a 6.5miler. (9:30min/mile - thanks, marathon man!) Wednesday I went to the gym after small group. It was an internal struggle to even get there...I SO just wanted to go home. I hopped on the treadmill and only a mile in realized that my shins were hurting...again. When I'm outside they don't, when I'm on the treadmill, they do. I sense a theme. Well, I was only able to get 2miles in (12min/mile) before I called it quits and headed home.

I had every intention of getting up early this am to run before work but forgot to turn my alarm on. Coincidence? Hmmmmm. Planning to get another 6.5 or so in tonight before having dinner with a friend. Tomorrow is another day to try and get up early. I'll keep you posted. Literally.

Monday, February 1, 2010

picture pages

I've talked a lot about running the lake in Wakefield and I thought it was about time you got to see what I get to see. Granted it's somewhat bleak and is after all, January. But the sun is shining the sky is a beautiful clear blue! Now just imagine it's 20deg with a 15mph wind... :)
To see a bigger picture, just click on it.
mile .75, heading toward the "ugly side" of the lake

mile 2.5, on the left is an office park but to the right is the lake.

around mile 3.25, the "pretty side" of the lake. in the summer, the sunsets are amazing

mile 4, heading towards town. if you look closely, you can see the gazebo.

mile 4.3ish, heading into down town Wakefield. i love my town.

Shoes! The progression goes from right front corner over to the left, up and over to the right back corner.

The two newest editions: on the left are my Ascics Gel Kayano 15s, on the right are my Nike Lunarglide+