Goals for 2015

This year has been full of ups and down, but mostly ups! Since I’m still rehabbing my knee and can’t run as much I’ve decided planning for races I can’t even run yet is a better idea.

Run a 1:30 or less half marathon

When I ran my first half last spring I had no real expectations, all I knew was that I wanted to run sub 1:45. I surprised myself by finishing in 1:34! I probably could have gone faster but I was holding back a little bit because I had no idea what running 13.1 miles would be like (and that beer I drank at mile 9 slowed me down for a little bit with all the carbonation).  I really want to run more halfs next year. I loved the combination of distance and speed required to run a good race so I’m hoping next year I can PR and run 1:30 or less.

Finish marathon training as a healthy runner

Last season training started out great, but as the miles increased and school began I definitely got thrown out of my rythym. This caused me to bunch long milage together, skip workouts, and try to play catch up. At the time I was so focused on getting the miles in. Instead I should have been focused on staying healthy. With bad training habits, less sleep, and more stress my body started to revolt. I ended up with some pretty bad Patellofemoral Pain (Runner’s Knee) that I still haven’t gotten rid of. My knee and I have been in quite the on again, off again relationship for the past few months. The good news is that it’s getting better, and I really like the new PT I’m working with. Next year I want to run another marathon, but I want to do it smarter. I know if I would have been healthier I could have run a much better race.

Run some trail races

At the end of this year I really started to fall in love with trail running. I ran cross country in high school but never really thought of it as trail running, however this year I started running more trails in hopes that the surface change would help my knee pain. It didn’t really make much of a difference but it did spark something inside of me and I found myself being drawn into the woods more often. I like the lack of traffic, people, and distractions. It’s a different experience feeling totally focused in on what you’re doing step by step. When running the trails you’re almost laser focused in on each step, it’s not as easy to go into autopilot. It’s kind of counter intuitive but it feels more meditative than road running to me. I don’t know if it has something to do with being more present and in the moment, but I find it easier to leave life’s distractions behind, and just focus on not falling flat on my face. I can’t wait to take more time to run trails next spring, especially because we just got state park license plates to entry to all NH state parks is free!

If I’m healthy run a 50K by the end of the year

I’m really just throwing this out there but I want to run a 50K. I know it sounds cray with how badly I crashed and burned on my marathon this year, but I’ve heard from others it’s a very different kind of challenge and its just something that’s been lurking in the back of my head for a while now. I know this goal will only happen if I can stay healthy next year so I’m just gonna wait it out and see how things go. If it happens in 2015 that’s awesome, if not there’s always next year!

 

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End of year update!

With the end of 2014 approaching I thought would reflect on some of the changes this last year has brought to my life…

Running has become a passion

Technically I started running again at the end of 2013, but I really didn’t start getting serious about it until this year. I didn’t make a new years resolution to become a runner again, but it just sort of happened. During the first part of the year November Project definitely pushed me, and once moving back to NH I found inspiration to keep going through the online running community. There are a lot of really great people out there that I’ve never met in person, but have still inspired me to continue pushing myself further than ever before.

I ran my first 13.1 and 26.2

First 13.1

First 13.1

This year I ran my first half marathon as part of a two person relay during the Vermont City Marathon, and then my first full marathon at the Maine Marathon in Portland. At the time these two distances were the farthest I’d ever run before. The best part about that is that they were both PR’s!  I’m glad that I accomplished both of these goals, even if the marathon basically broke my body (still recovering). I’m looking forward to new types of races, and distances next year.

Maine Marathon Pic

First 26.2

 

I’ve learned all about running injuries

Although I’ve had some rough spots along the way, often times feeling as if I’m moving from one injury to the next, I have learned a lot more about the human body and how it responds to training. I’ve had to deal with ITBS, a stress fracture, and now some PFPS that I can’t seem to shake. Today I actually had an appointment with a sports medicine doc who put my mind at ease by reassuring me that I hadn’t permanently injured myself. He was able to prescribe a PT/Chiro that he thinks would be a good fit for me, and then I’m going to follow up with him again in 6-8 weeks. This is the first time I’ve ever been excited to start PT and I’m trying to keep a positive outlook on next season even if right now I’m going stir crazy. This year I’ve learned the importance of rest and recovery. Hopefully I can use this knowledge to help me start next year as a stronger smarter runner.

Injury #1 of 2014

Injury #1 of 2014

Completed my 1st Semester of Nursing School!!

I feel kinda dumb saying this since I have friends completing Medical and Dental Schools, but I never thought nursing school would be so hard. I’ve put more time and effort into studying and staying on top of my work this last semester than I ever did during undergrad. It hasn’t been easy but I can happily say that I gave it my all. I finished the semester with good grades even getting an -A in my hardest class Patho/Pharm. Bring on the next semester!

I started this blog

This was the first time I’ve ever consistently blogged, and the first time I’ve really spent reading other blogs. I’ve learned a lot about running, fitness, and diet this year and a lot this is due to my time spent writing and reading running blogs. I still feel self-conscious/nervous every time I push the “publish” button on wordpress, but it’s something I like doing and has kept me motivated/accountable more than anything else. It’s nice to get my thoughts out there, and sometimes just the act of writing things out whether I publish them or not has helped me focus my brain a bit. Putting so much time and energy into school has been the main reason I haven’t updated my blog as much but I’m hoping next semester when clinicals start I’ll have more time to stay up to date. No matter what 2015 throws at me I feel ready for new challenges!

[PS I plan to put out a post about my goals for 2015 soon so stay tuned]