Wednesday, May 30, 2012

New newest running toy

It seems that every good hobby comes with accessories right? I have bought the shoes, the socks, the running shorts and shirts and even the interval timer. When I decided to follow the Galloway plans I knew I needed something so I ordered the very affordable GymBoss. Turns out they are a local company which was even cooler. For the last 8 weeks this little machine has served me well.

I have also been using to map out my runs and to calculate the times for my per mile time and the distance. Overall it has worked quite well. Couple things I was not in love with. First, twice I have accidentally reset the time and it has happened at the worst times (the last one being at the Race for the Cure). It goes to a 3/1 interval with a beep between whereas I wanted a 2/1 interval with a vibrate alert. It messed me up but not too bad. The second issue is I want to run in the Nature Center but I never know the distance and because of the trees I cannot map the run path out. Finally I can never get an accurate estimate of my pace time. I have to calculate where I am distance wise and then how many intervals I have done and finally I can maybe figure it out in my head.

So I decided it was time to upgrade. Now, I couldn't just get a basic thing because the price difference was not a lot because the most basic GPSwatch/timer and the one that seems to do it all. I ended up with this new little beauty:

It already has one draw back over the one above and that is the size. My wrist is all bone and this wristband does not conform to it well. So I am either going to have to wear it closer to my elbow or I am going to try a sweat wristband for padding. It is charging right now otherwise we would have already taken out first spin outside. Can't wait until tomorrow night!! I hope I love it as much as I want to love it (even if it kills me because for this price, I have to love it)!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

My first race...

Well today was the Detroit Race for the Cure. 40,000 people downtown outside Comerica Park. Now I will give the city of Detroit credit, they did a great job down there today. There were police everywhere and the city looked alive and great, just what I love about going down there.

So, mom and I headed out at 6:55am, after a quick stop at Tim Horton's (where we saw 2 carloads of other people heading down) we were off. Traffic was really crazy exiting at Mack. Now that was weird but I have no idea where those people thought they were going but that was not where we were planning on parking. We headed down and got off right around Cass Tech (I can never remember the exit) and were able to park right off the service drive. Nice lot and only $10 to park. It would be a $15-20 lot for a game. Only sad thing was around the corner there was a $3 lot...oops but we got parked and headed over.

We stood in line and got the scarves from Ford which I love and a bag from Binson's. Panera had the ribbon bagels again this year and surprisingly they were stale. Not so good. We met up with Leslie and Hayley pretty quick and we walked around and checked things out. Comerica Park was open for inside restrooms which was nice. It was kind of cool to be in the ballpark when it was empty!

Leslie and Penny ready to walk

Hayley and I ready to run

Right before 9am we all split up and headed to the starts. The walkers lined up outside Hockeytown Cafe and the runners were across the expressway so the overpass separated the groups. We were kind of towards the front of the pack but still not close to the start. It was a little intimidating to be in the middle of all those people. Once the race got going a little after 9am it took us about 2 minutes to get to the official start where I started my watch. I had originally set it to 2/1 intervals since I had been comfortable with that in training but somehow I managed to reset the entire thing as we were starting so we ended up with 3/1 intervals which was actually fine and what I think I will push more for. Now the start was a complete shock to me: people in front of us were WALKING and I don't mean walking fast but just walking. We spent the entire first 1/2 mile weaving around them to find a place so we could get into a rhythm. It was really strange. We ended up running 7 minutes straight before our first walk. They had 2 water stops but one weird thing was they only had garbage after the second one so we ended up carrying the bottles for a while. Also, opening a water bottle cap when you are running/walking was not super easy but it was good.

I had been worried about running with my Hayley since she is almost 16 and for sure faster than I am. I was right since I was the one asking for us to slow our pace but she adjusted to me and it was so nice for us to be able to do this together. We talked the entire time so neither of us got winded enough to make it an issue.

We ended up crossing the finish line at 36:12 but I had us closer to 34 minutes with our slightly delayed start. We both felt fine when we finished so I think we could have pushed harder but being my first time I was just unsure how much I would have left.

Hayley and I after the race but before the rain

We decided to walk back up to Woodward since that was where the walkers where finishing. At this point it of course decided to start to rain and not a sprinkle but a RAIN. We finally talked to Leslie and they still had a while left to finish so we decided to go into the rain from our nice dry place at the Fox and meet up with them. On the way I ran into a couple of my student. Ki'Asia was down there coaching the cheer group and Ralonda was cheering with them! They had been towards the start of the race and were fun to hear as a sent off to the race!

Overall I am OK with my first try. I want to maintain a 11:30-12 minute mile for the Princess since my goal time is 2:45 and I want to be able to get a couple pictures at least (and to do this I have to do 13 mm averages). I am hoping my next race is not quite as large since I liked the atmosphere but the crowds and the walkers mixed in with the runners was just different. I am planning another race in August for the AdvoKate run which raises money for St. Jude for brain tumor research. Now the question: 5K or 10K? Either way Hayley said she is in for another race so maybe I should just train to keep up with her!!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Getting ready for my first "race"

I am not entirely sure what I was thinking when I came up with the bright idea to run in the Detroit Race of the Cure as my first event. It is a wonderful cause and a great environment downtown but I don't think I really thought through this before.

Prior to Abby being born I volunteered in the Kids section at the race. It was a lot of run and I got to be in the middle of 1000s of people all there for the same reason. What I seemed to forget or maybe it was I never knew, was that over 40,000 people attend this event. That is a lot of people packed into the streets of Detroit to run and walk. I have reviewed the course maps and it seems after the first half we are separated from the 1 mile group and from the 5K walkers so maybe it will not be too crowded the entire time (I really don't think that since even if only 1/4 of the people do the 5K run that is still a LOT of people). I think my plan is to just do my best and enjoy myself as much as I can. I am not going to a personal record or for a medal so we will see.

One thing I am looking forward to is who I am going with. My mom and sister-in-law, Leslie are doing the 5K walk. My wonderful niece said she would run the 5K with me. Now I think that running with a 16 year old is asking for trouble since I don't think I will be able to keep up. She says she is not a runner but we will see tomorrow.

Yesterday I did a pre race trial. I got out my new running belt and put my phone in to see if I can run with my phone. Turns out it was not a problem. Also, I ran with my sunglasses on yesterday since it was 3:30pm and I knew I had to because of the sun. That worked well too! I also thought through what I was going to wear. I really did not have a plan but after some thought I am going to wear my race T-Shirt since it is the RFTC one and that is the reason for the day!

Tomorrow morning should be interesting, let's just hope I can do it without making a complete fool of myself.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

RunFast Appointment

In an effort to put some of my fears to rest, I contacted the Sports Medicine division at Henry Ford. They have a program called RunFast that is just one of their performance enhancement offerings. Though it is not covered by insurance, I figured that if I am really going to do this thing, I need to do it right and I could also submit the $125 to my FSA so it made it worth it to me.

My appointment was at 7:30am. Dave came out and instantly you could tell he knew what he was doing. He just gave off confidence. We went in and he started doing his assessment of me. He took some history, mostly about my injury and concerns. From there he had me move and bend and he flex and checked my legs from every angle. He had me walk, run, work on the treadmill. He videotaped me during a lot of this in order to analyze it for what I am doing wrong (and right

I had some trouble with the balance and strength but he said it was not as bad as he would have predicted. In the end I was really happy with the outcome. It turns out that my right calf (that was a surprise) is really tight. He said his concern was that before the rupture my left might also have been tight and the rupture actually loosened it up. He gave me 3 strengthening exercises to do 2 times a week and 5 stretching ones to work on making my calf more flexible. I was there for 90 minutes and with him the entire time.

I go back on June 5th in order to get the next level of instruction and to see what the video told him.  I am excited that I can do this.

Here is a link to what Henry Ford has to offer for athletes.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Is it fair of me to do this race?

I have been so excited about having this amazing and fun goal ahead of me. I have been planning, thinking and training about how to make this happen and to make it perfect. Well, tonight I think I hit a wall. It isn't the training, it isn't the timing, I am worried about the cost. This seems so selfish of me to be spending this much to run 13.1 miles. I could do the Detroit 1/2 marathon for a fraction of the cost.  So far this is where things stand:

Hotel/Accommodations:  $1360*
Flight:                              $300
Race Registration:           $120
Costume/Accessorites:    $100
CheerTeam for Jeff:          $99**
Race Retreat for me:       $110
Plus food and other fun stuff

* This is for a 2 bedroom villa for Friday-Sunday nights. Leslie and Andy are coming with us at this point so we have to upgrade to a 2 bedroom so we can all be comfortable. Figuring that we could rent these points out for $10 per point this is what we could get if we rented them. It is not a true cost since we have the DVC points for us to use but once we use them, they are gone if that makes sense.

**I am honestly not sure about this expense. I really want to do the Race Retreat as a bonus to myself. In order for Jeff to join me in there after the race, he has to join the CheerTeam. Now, for some people this is great. They get reserved seating around the course and in the Magic Kingdom and at the finish line. Problem is for those who know my husband, I am not even sure if he will be awake when I finish the race, let alone at the finish line and ready to have the celebration breakfast. I think when this comes down to it, he is going to have to decide. I understand running is not this thing so I do not expect to see him on the course but at the end would be wonderful. We shall see.

When all is said and done, this is going to be one VERY expensive weekend. Maybe I should just pick a different race. I might have to talk to Jeff about this sometime soon.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Is this the beginning of a problem or just the beginning of a journey?

As most people know, 6 years ago I suffered a freak accident that led to the complete rupture of my Achilles tendon. Now I say freak because in everything I have heard and read, women have this happen less then men and that most are over 35 when it occurs. So I was not the usual patient that my doctor deals with. Also, most happen in sports (basketball or tennis type activities) not to Pom Pon coaches demonstrating kicks that she had done 100s of times.

So, after a trip to the ER, a temporary soft cast with crutches that were too big, an eventful night at camp with 24 girls, a 2.5 hour drive home on my own, frantic calls to find a surgeon (to this day I still am in shock that Beaumont told me it would be 6-8 weeks to get in to see someone despite everything), to finding an amazing doctor out of Crittenton who repaired it within 4 days. The next 10 weeks involved casts, braces and more pain then I thought possible for an injury that was completely painless when it happened.

When I started my running journey, the first question I had was for my primary care doctor about whether I could even do this. He said it was healed and at this point was stronger than it was prior to the accident since the metal coil around it would hold it together. I have not spoke to my surgeon since I was released from his care so I went with this recommendation, especially since I have had no pain in a LONG time.

This is week 5 of training (I am actually on the end of week 7 of the conditioning program but only because I started on week 3 since I was there already and did not want to go backwards) and I am having pain. Not on the side that was repaired, no, it is the OTHER side. It is not over the top and I can still run and move but it worries me since I have done surgery once and have no desire to try that one again. Crutches while teaching was hard, I think with 2 little kids it would be close to impossible.

Having a doctor out of Henry Ford led me to check out their resources. Turns out that in their whole body preventative approach they have designed an assessment for runners. So after some emails with the head of the PT department, I have an appointment for a complete assessment. I am hoping he will tell me I need to a)change how I run, b) get an insert for my shows or c) stretch differently to help this out. I am praying it is not d) STOP RUNNING, this won't work.

We will see on Tuesday what is going on!