Monday, December 5, 2011

Bringing in the miles 2012

I ran 6.5 miles this morning with my auntie Darlene. Thus far that is the longest run I've ever done in one period of time.

Lately I've been having incredible opportunities, wonderful experiences and fun surprises popping up all over the place.

I have gotten the opportunity to run two 5ks this month.

The first one I did, I was shocked to find my time had dropped 4 minutes from last years same race!

I have come a long way as far as fitness over the last couple of years. 5 years ago I was in the worst shape of my life. After breaking my foot in 4 peices and dealing with a prolongued wrist injury, I was barely exercising and within a 6 month period, i gained 20lbs. I am now 15 lbs down from that time period, but my body has also changed. I am no longer the gymnast struggling to get thinner. I am now focused on good health as well as increasing muscle mass.

1 year ago I decided I needed to make a change in diet because I could not lose the excess weight. I stopped eating meat for about a year and a 1/2. 6 months after that I had lost about 10lbs., was once again training in gymnastics and was overall-healthy. 6 months later I chose to be done with my career as a gymnast and quickly put the 10lbs back on.

Over the past few months, the weight has slowly started to come off, although I was struggling with severe fatigue and an inability to work at my top capacity. About a month ago I finally got tested and found out I have an intolerance to gluten. Since then I have stopped eating bread, rice, potatoe and gluten. I also took sugar out of my diet as well as lowered my caffeine and dairy intake. I then started eating white meats and fish for increased protein. Within the first week, my energy level increased massively and I've been able to work out harder than I have in years! Likewise, my body has changed and toned up considerably! Mentally I feel much better as well. :)

I was so excited this year to know some people who were racing. I already knew Darlene was coming since that was part of our plan since training together; but we were both excited and surprised to see our cycling friend, Tita! Others were also there that we knew. Speedy Kate was there but not racing. I saw a couple of gymnasts I used to train. One whose family is hardcore into exercise, so she and her family did the race. The other girl was just there to watch I think.

At the start of the race, Darlene-as expected-took off. Fine by me. :) Tita was behind me.
At the first mile mark of today's race, I saw my time. 7:41. Woooah! The last time I had a time that low on a mile was when I was in 7th grade! And that was running a hard 1 mile run back then. I was pacing myself today and so I almost couldn't believe the time...!

On Mile 2, I was at 16 min. or so.

By that time I was starting to feel blah. My stomach wasn't feeling too good prior to the race and I've worked out so hard this week already that I knew right at the beginning of the race that I needed to really pace myself because my body wasn't feeling fantastic.

Nearing the finish I was not going to push it...Until Darlene started yelling at me to go harder. And so somehow, I sprinted the last bit... I was surprised I could go that hard at the end.

The second race I did, I managed to have been party-ing til 3am the night before and had thus only gotten about 4 hours of sleep. I almost skipped out on it but decided last minute to pursue the opportunity. My time was about the same as the last race-24 minutes and 30+ seconds. This time, there were even more people I recognized. I had a friend who had texted me prior to the race complaining about the fact that he wanted to go for a run. I invited him to join in on the 5k. He was at the finish line-cheering me on as I came in. He swears he is out of shape yet his time was like 20 minutes! He is, however, just insane. There were a couple of other people I knew from school-Chris and Chelsea, they are brother and sister. It was nice to see a couple of faces I hadn't seen since high school. Tita and Darlene were both there as well. Darlene's time was 22 minutes or so. At 54, she is an incredible runner! Tita's time was faster than mine but only by a few seconds. ;)

I was also surprised to find that I had placed first in both events for my age group. The first race there were only 2 of us, but for the second one there were 6 people. :) Since running isn't exactly what I'd consider a strength, I was excited to find these results.

Since that time I now have a part time job as a barista, will be going to school in January, have been asked to become someone's personal trainer and have been offered the chance to teach crossfit or other exercise classes in a gym setting. Life keeps getting better. :)

Merry Christmas my tri-friends, fellow runners and exercise-aholics.