Keep Running Fatty!

You better believe I'm gonna keep running!

This is Why I Run

My Medal Collection

I have a confession: I’m an addict. I get a rush at the possibility of fueling my addiction. I am never quite satisfied. I want more. I cannot possibly have enough!!

But please don’t worry about me. It’s not a bad addition…in fact, I’d say it was quite a healthy addiction to have-an addiction that keeps this fatty running! You see, I’m a medal addict.

To date, I’ve got 15 medals. (2 are not pictured). Just about every sizable race these days hands out a medal at the finish line-a true symbol of each race experience. Each medal is certainly unique and that is what makes it a really neat collector’s item. It’s not uncommon for me to gravitate towards the races that offer medals.

The glowing gold Mickey Mouse, the glittery sand dollar, the flowery cherry blossoms, my Down & Dirty dog tag, my collection of shamrocks and disguised bottle openers are all unique and very special to me. They represent all the hard work, the grueling miles I’ve put on the pavement and treadmill, the sweat, the pain, the shedding of pounds, gaining of strength and all the progress I’ve made in the past few years.  I love each of them.

This weekend I ran the Virginia is for Lovers 14K in Virginia Beach (that’s 8.69 miles). Why did I decide to be a bit ambitious and sign up for this longer distance race? The medal. Such a beautiful and unique medal (and it’s a bottle opener!!) The race itself was a great experience. I really underestimated my stamina this early in the year and ran the entire way in a total of 1 hour, 38 minutes an d 19 seconds (a decent pace for me!). It was 48 degrees, dry, flat course and the swag for this race couldn’t be beat! A very nice black water resistant running jacket, a goblet, and a carnation…and of course the best prize of all…the beautiful Virginia is for Lovers medal!

I’m starting the 4th week of my training for the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler and the Marine Corps Historic Half Marathon (MCHH). I just signed up for the Shamrock 8K in Virginia Beach on St. Patrick’s Day. Those are 3 more medals I am working very hard for. I can’t wait to improve my time and get faster and get those medals. I want more.

I’ve ran a total of 45.41 miles in the past 3 weeks. I am set to run an additional 19-22 miles this week. I’m starting to really feel confident again. I’m improving and the shorter runs are getting much easier.  I’m getting stronger and although I feel healthier, I’m sure in the coming weeks I’ll be able to really feel a change in my body as I shed some inches from running (it doesn’t always equal pounds unfortunately).

I want to get faster, stronger, and collect those medals as my reward. I want more!

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Cherry Blossom 10-Miler Training Begins…NOW!

Today officially marks the first day of spring race training season!

Running the course of the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler in 2011.

The Cherry Blossom 10-Miler is only 10 weeks away- Sunday, April 1st in Washington, DC.

This is a very popular race in DC – and for good reason! It’s an absolutely gorgeous run through National Parks in the heart of DC, starting at the Washington Monument, crossing the Memorial Bridge, Independence Ave, passing by the famous Cherry Blossoms near the Tidal Basin, behind the Jefferson Memorial and looping around East Potomac Park (course map). It’s so popular that runners have to enter a lottery just to ‘win’ an entry spot to participate. I have no idea how many enter the lottery, but they only select about 10,000 runners. I’ve been extremely fortunate to get picked two years in a row.

I signed up for the New Balance virtual training plan offered by the race organizers. They send a daily/weekly plan of the miles are you supposed to run. It was a little bit of a shock when I got my first e-mail today and it says to run 4-6 miles Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday,
5-7 miles on Thursday, 5-7 on Saturday and 8-12 on Sunday. Um, what?! No!! Whew- they accidentally sent me the ‘ADVANCED’ training plan. I quickly switched to intermediate.

The intermediate is much more do-able on my level. This week the plan is to run 2-4 miles on Monday, 3-5 miles on Tuesday, 2-4 miles on Thursday and Saturday, and 4-7 miles on Sunday.

I’ve been lacking some motivation when it comes to running lately. The winter blues are zapping my energy. I’m hoping this is just the boost I need to get going because my goal is knock off at least 10 minutes from last year’s time of 2:00. Doing 10 miles in 2 hours is an average of a 12-minute mile, which is slower than my recent pace (between 11-11:30-minute miles). Last year, I was still ailing from injuries from running the Disney Marathon, so it was quite a challenge to do 10 miles. I feel like I’m going to be much more prepared for this year’s Cherry Blossom race and my goal is very well within my reach.

Ready to hit the treadmill tonight for my first Cherry Blossom training run! Gotta keep running!