Tag Archives: Inspiration

Dear Running Sneakers…

Hello again!

Sorry I’ve been MIA this week – finals are here, and things are starting to get crazy! But I did manage to go for a great 6 mile run on Tuesday (averaged 8:57/mile!! Woo!). 🙂 That was the inspiration for today’s post.

Dear Sneakers. Adventures of a Mother-Daughter Running Duo

Dear Running Sneakers,

Thank you for always being there for me. Even if I haven’t visited with you in weeks, I know you won’t hold it against me.

Thank you for protecting me from all the hard and painful things that might hurt my feet on a run. Sharp rocks, pointy sticks – they’re nothing now that I have you. No matter the season, I know you’ll be there to protect me from snow, mud, dirt – whatever I encounter.

Adventures of a Mother-Daughter Running Duo

Thank you for providing just the right amount of support and flexibility in our relationship. You allow my feet to flex and bend in just the right way to keep my toes happy and uninjured. But you also cushion my high arches and keep them comfortable no matter how many miles I’m running.

Adventures of a Mother-Daughter Running Duo

Thank you for helping me reach my dreams. I could never have run a marathon without you. And I certainly couldn’t run a half marathon in every state without you! Thanks for making these accomplishments and goals possible.

Finishing the Rochester Marathon

Thank you for boosting my confidence with your great style. I love your flashy blue color, and I love taking photographs with you. We look so good together.

Adventures of a Mother-Daughter Running DuoHere’s to many more miles, races, and runs together!

Love,

Nora

 

Have a great weekend!

 

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My Mom’s Thoughts on the Roc Marathon

Hi again!

Sorry for the long break, once again. Between classes and my toenail probs, finding the time to post has been tricky! I’m pleased to report however, that the toenail is on the mend, and I was even able to run a nice easy 3-miler this morning! 🙂 But without further ado…

Rochester Marathon Recap

When I was 25 I occasionally ran with a neighbor who was training for  the NYC marathon. ..he and I would run about 5 miles together down to Huntington Harbor and back,  and then he would take off to do another ten miles –or more. I was a bit in awe of Bill, who was 55 a the time, but I never  considered joining him, and I never, EVER thought that, at 55,  I would run my first marathon.

So, if you’re out there Bill P. from Huntington NY, and you happen to read this blog, I thank you for being an inspiration, (even if it took me 25 years to act on it) and I hope that wherever you are, you are still running!

And now to pick up where Nora left off:

Running along the Erie Canal during the Rochester Marathon

Somewhere   along the canal it began to rain and though it was a pleasant drizzle that cooled me off, the sky to my right – the direction the course would take me – looked  very ominous and I was sure this pleasant drizzle would turn into a monsoon before I got to the finish. (It would, but more about that later.)

I am pleased to say, I kept to my plan, of running a mile, and walking a minute, and managed to do this until mile 21. At that point I realized I wasn’t going to be “busting loose” or dropping the walking breaks, in fact, I started to walk a bit more.  At first I felt guilty about this, but as I started to see more and more runners on the side of the road (some obviously feeling much worse than me), I decided there was no shame in the walking, and reminded myself that this was my first marathon and that the goal was to finish, and to enjoy the experience, and that was what I decided to do. I started to walk as fast as I could, (my slowest of these last few splits ended up being 12:46 so not too bad), running for short stretches, and taking the time to thank volunteers and spectators alike. Like Nora, I really appreciated the fun signs!

Finally, I was making   my way back into the city,   relieved to know the end was in sight.  I also noticed there were some large puddles and one officer had hung his rain jacket from the window of his patrol car. It flapped as I went by and he smiled and said, “Trying to get it to dry out.”  I realized it had rained here, but that somehow, I had been spared. (It was my marathon miracle!)

And then I was crossing the finish line!! Nora was there with her boyfriend and they were a welcome sight. 🙂

I quickly realized I had no fine motor skills left and could not unlock my phone to stop Mapmyrun, (the app I use on my phone to log my miles) so I handed it off to Nora who took care of that. I was pretty excited and wobbly, and a gentleman came over with a wheel chair, just in case I toppled over.  I didn’t but it was close!

After walking about and drinking some chocolate milk, Nora and I realized we really didn’t feel like eating anything (never a problem after a half marathon!)  and we  decided it might be best to get back to our hosts’(my sister and her husband)  house, and relax there.  (It never occurred to me to check the results in case I had placed in my age division. Later I found out, I PLACED THIRD!)  We began to walk to where Nora’s boyfriend had parked his car. And then it hit: a veritable monsoon of wind and rain that moved like a wall of water across the streets, whipping down the fences at the finishing chute, and drenching us, and the runners we saw making their way to the finish! By the time we got to the car we looked like drowned cats and I texted my sister that we would need towels! Now cold and wet, I couldn’t help feeling badly for the runners still on the course, and hoping they would not have far to run.

Celebrating our first marathon

After hot showers, and a celebratory glass of champagne, we headed to the spa, for our much anticipated, and much needed massages. It seemed somehow inappropriate to take our phones into the relaxing atmosphere, so we left them in the little lockers provided so sadly, we have no pictures of the lovely facilities. 😦 But needless to say, it was the perfect antidote to running 26.2 miles! (Though I did have to jump off the table because of a cramp in my calf, which was slightly embarrassing.) Nevertheless,  Nora and I have decided that this will definitely have to be a post marathon tradition.

So a big thank you  to our hosts, my sister and her husband,  who made their home available, who fed us, and cheered us on; to Nora’s boyfriend for driving out to support us, and shuttling us around; to the city of Rochester, its  police force, the volunteers, and the great spectators, who came out despite the rain.

Rochester Marathon Recap

To all of you, thank you for helping Nora and I check off the great state of New York in spectacular fashion!!

Running Tattoos

P.S. one of those tattoos isn’t real… 😉

 

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Running Happy This Week

Happy Almost-End-of-the-Week to you! 🙂

I have some exciting news to share today.

I ran a comfortable 5 miles this week! Marathon training is back.

I ran this week!!! AND MORE IMPORTANTLY, my toe didn’t bother me! I went out for a run on Sunday, not knowing how far I would go and prepared to turn around early if my foot started acting up. At 3 miles, I was coming up on the turn-off for my street… and I just kept going! My foot felt happy, it was a cool, gorgeous day for a run, and I was just so ecstatic to be outside running again. My mom and I also made friends with this adorable cat who ran fearlessly up to us to get petted.

Friendly to runners cat.

After these great runs, I’m so tempted to dive full-force back into marathon training with an 18-miler, but I’m trying to be smart and not re-injure myself. So, I settled for 2 more 3 mile runs with rest days in between for this week.

On Wednesday, I had PT and the therapist confirmed that I’ve made huge improvements. I also learned how to use kinesiology tape (that’s a mouthful… we’ll just say KT tape from now on.) 🙂 The tape is essentially supposed to help support my toe and keep it from flexing as much. Between the healing that’s already occurred in my tendon, and the tape, I’m feeling much more optimistic about the marathon this week. 🙂

That said, I did google “how to run a marathon without training”. Long story short – it’s possible to do, but FAR FROM ADVISABLE. A lot of these people did not really consider themselves “runners” (and didn’t run more than a mile or two leading up to the marathon!), but wanted to try the marathon to cross it off their bucket lists. Personally, I think that’s nuts. I’m going to do everything I can to get in a long run of 18-20 miles in the month before the marathon. Not just for purpose of strengthening my legs, but also for the confidence boost I would feel going into the marathon, knowing that I’ve run long before!

Inspirational quote~ "Don't be so afraid. Do what feels right. and chase whatever it is you want with tenacity and determination."I wanted to share this quote, because I came across it this week surfing Pinterest and it really stood out to me. Not just in relation to training for the marathon, but also for going back to school, and with graduation a mere few months away. I would never want to be the type of person to miss an opportunity because I was too afraid to try, and I’ve been thinking a lot about that lately and how to continue to apply this principle to my life.

If you don’t hear from me for a few days, it’s because I’m busy moving into my house and getting organized! I promise I’ll be back soon. 🙂

Got an inspirational quote? I would love to hear it!

 

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Life Lessons From Brady & Keeper

Hey there!

This week I’ve been continuing to get ready to go back to school. I’m definitely going to miss my family… and that includes Brady (our chocolate lab) and Keeper (the black lab)! 🙂 I’ve learned a lot from these two dogs over the years, so I thought I would share some of these important life lessons (and treat you all to some really cute photos). So without further ado…

Important Life Lessons From My Dogs.

Don't be afraid to make the first move.Go ahead, plant a big, ol’ kiss on someone’s cheek. The sloppier the better.

Soak up the sun.

But make sure you slather on some sunscreen unless you have a thick, fur coat to protect you.

Take time to unwind.

Long day? Pour yourself a glass of wine and grab a good book. Also – nap.

take naps.

nap frequently

 

be helpful

Present someone in your family with one of their shoes. Even if they don’t ask for it. Bonus points if you carry it in your mouth. 🙂

Dance to the beat of your own drum.

It doesn’t matter if you have two left feet. Or paws.

do what you love.

Run. Swim. Chase tennis balls. Whatever you love doing.

 What life lessons have you learned from your pet? 🙂

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The Power of the Group

Happy Weekend! 🙂

I hope you all had a good week! I was busy running around getting some things for school, and ordering textbooks. It is finally hitting me that this summer is almost over. I leave for school next weekend. YIKES. I should also mention that this is actually going to be my last semester of undergrad (I’m graduating early in 3 and 1/2 years), so that is a little bizarre to think about! But I’ll probably do a post on that a little bit later on…

First, I wanted to share that I have gotten my new, physical therapist-approved running sneakers! =)

My new running sneakers, the Brooks Pure Flows

My previous sneakers were the Brooks Ghost 7, which you can see here, after I ran the Mad Half Marathon this summer –

the Medal from the Mad Half Marathon in Waitsfield, Vermont

I’m sticking with Brooks for now, but moving to the Pure Flows because my physical therapist recommended I try a more flexible shoe. These are definitely more flexible, even leaning towards the whole minimalist, natural style. It’s definitely different, and not what I’m used to but so far, I’m really loving them! I’ll be sure to post some updates later on after I’ve tested them out more to let you know what I think.

But now I want to post on something a little different that I’ve been thinking about lately.

The power of the group

I wanted to talk a little bit about what is probably my favorite aspect of exercise, besides the whole being able to eat an extra serving of ice cream-side of it! (That is a major part of it though, not gonna lie!) 😉

With my current foot tendon issues, I’ve been forced to take a break from running, and while this has been a total bummer, it’s been a great opportunity for me to branch out. A couple of summers ago, I had taken some exercise classes at a local gym, but since that summer, running has really taken over, and the gym workouts were replaced with more miles. I realized early in the summer that I really missed those classes. With my marathon plans though, it just didn’t seem like I would have the time to go for long runs AND make the trips to the gym, so I was happy enough to stick to running.

Well, it’s funny how things work out sometimes… Now that I’m injured, I have joined the gym, and I’m finally able to attend classes again! It’s a glass half-full kind of situation. At least, I’m trying to look at it like that.

Why I love group exercise classes

When I was in my Group Power class a few days ago (basically an hour-long full body cardio workout complete with weights), I realized that the same reason I LOVE running races is why I also love exercise classes.

The social atmosphere of group exercise is not only more enjoyable, it inspires me to push myself to new levels.

As a psychology major/nerd, I have read countless studies that have described the power of the group and how it impacts task performance (when it has a positive effect, it’s called social facilitation). I never really thought about it in terms of my own running before though, but it makes sense. Watching other runners give it their all in a race, helps me tap into that place inside that keeps my legs pumping when I can barely breathe. Sure, I’m a competitive person, and I like to run fast in races, but it’s so much more than that.

There’s something about running or sweating it out in an exercise class with a group of people that creates a bond. You know that the person right beside you is tired too, but they’re still going. So you keep going too. And then before you know it, you’ve run further or faster or you’ve done more reps with more weight than you ever thought you could.

An electric atmosphere at the Shipyard Old Port Half Marathon

The start of the Shipyard Old Port Half-Marathon from 2 years ago

The atmosphere at a race is electric – there’s so much adrenaline and excitement that you can’t help but get swept up in it! For so many runners, a race represents the culmination of months of training, sacrifice, and (sorry for the cliche-) BLOOD, SWEAT, AND TEARS. How can you not be excited in such an environment? Exercise classes can be very similar (although on a much smaller scale) in that they bring together many like-minded people who are looking to challenge themselves and become stronger in the process.

Exercise Classes Bring Together Like-Minded People Looking to get stronger

And that’s an experience you simply cannot replicate working out alone.

(Sidenote: I also feel like a total badass lifting a barbell so that helps…)

 

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I’m Back!

Hello again! 🙂

Sorry for being gone a few days, I was visiting a certain someone in New York!

My Visit to New York

It was a fun trip filled with  scenic views-

Chittenango Falls

this moment

And goats. Because they’re cute.

Cute little goat!

After a few days away (and more rest for my foot), I was excited to try running again. Confession – I ran 3 miles last Monday (well, ran/walked every few minutes), and it felt fine. So I was feeling hopeful.

I set out on Sunday morning with my mom to attempt 5 miles (she was running 13). I felt really good initially, and decreased my walk breaks to one minute every mile. Well, it didn’t work unfortunately… At first, my foot felt fine, but then around mile 2 and a half, it  just felt sort of uncomfortable, like something was not quite right, but not exactly painful. By mile 3, it was painful again.

So possibly I tried for too much too soon. But it’s incredibly frustrating, because the marathon is just over a month away. And I can barely run 3 miles right now. Not good. 😦 I don’t want to dwell on the negative stuff though! I still have more physical therapy, I’m planning on getting some new running sneakers to better accommodate my high arches, and I’m still getting in plenty of workouts. So we’ll just have to wait and see what September brings.

My mom did great again with her 13 miles though! Check out how consistent those splits are!

Consistent mile splits during marathon training

Now, she’s just got to keep that up for another 13, and she’ll be golden. 🙂

 

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So Why Now… (My Mom’s Decision to Sign Up for the Full Marathon)

Hey there!

So, about a week after my mom was swearing she would never run a full marathon (and making me double-check that I had registered her for the Rochester HALF and not the full), she made the decision to take the plunge and transfer her registration to the full 26.2 miles! I asked her to write up a little post explaining what had changed, and this is what she said. 🙂

Why My mom decided to run a full marathon

I guess it’s because when you run with someone who is always looking ahead for the next challenge, you can’t help but feel a little of that excitement that comes from taking on a new challenge. Last year, Nora took on a sprint triathlon, a whole new adventure for her.

Nora at the Wild Cat Sprint Triathlon

Nora finishing the biking section of the Wild Cat Sprint Triathlon

But that’s how she is, always checking out new things, considering possibilities, and then taking that educated leap in the pursuit of a new goal. Just like with the triathlon, she’s willing to try new things and to work hard to reach those goals. So in the end, even though I’m the parent and should set the example, I find myself inspired to follow. Needless to say, I took into consideration the fact that I have now run 9 half-marathons without injury, and that it seems perfectly reasonable to assume that I am healthy enough to pursue this goal! And of course, though we run together, we will each run our own race, with our own plans, our own paces, and our own individual goals, but always finding each other at the finish.

findeachother

And who knows? In the end, I might become one of those impressive souls I meet at races; someone who despite discovering running late in her life, now runs all kinds of races – including a few marathons a year – making friends as she travels and runs, always remembering what Helen Keller said – “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.”

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