Rest Day

Today was a rest day for me. I did a pretty good job of giving my legs a rest. Part of me just wants to keep going but I understand the importance of giving your legs and body a rest and time to recover.

My son wouldn’t go down for his nap today, so I decided I would lay down with him and cuddle. It was so nice to lay down in the middle of day. I got a quick 15 or so minute nap in and just laid there enjoying the time with him while he napped. Can’t beat a day when you get that opportunity.

I’ve been reading a lot about recover, especially from long runs. During the 5K that I ran in December, there was a local PT place with a booth. They had a hand out that promoted a recovery lounge with Normatec Compression Boots and Sleeves. If any of you have ever used these for recovery, I’d love to hear your thoughts. I’ve been thinking about buying a a package and trying them out after my long runs.

I’m also looking at picking up the travel stick or something similar for recovery and warm ups. If you have one of these, let me know your thoughts.

I’m thinking about running a race this Sunday. It’s a 4 miler. It’s not too far from home and with it being on Super Bowl Sunday, I think it might be a good idea to burn a few calories lol. It would take the place of a long run and I would rest on Saturday instead. I’ll keep you updated if I sign up. Just need to make sure it fits in the schedule with the kiddos.

I’m trying to get a few reviews done and also add a section or two to the site including interviewing other bloggers. Will keep you updated on that. Looking forward to my run tomorrow.

Keep being Runspirational. Run to Inspire. Inspired to Run.

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Conquer the Mountain

Today was a very interesting run. I did my long run for the week. 9 miles was the goal. At first, I thought I was going to run a similar route to last week, but decided during breakfast, I was going to run in a different direction.

I started out and hit two steep hills in the first mile. Last week, I hit these same two hills around mile 6. It was nice to get them out of the way right away today.

I then hit a flat part of the run and everything was going great. I hit around mile 3 and decided I wanted to test myself a little more. I ended up running down to the town’s main avenue and started at the bottom. It’s about a 1.25 mile run up a mountain basically.

I hit the first third of it and felt great. Happy I decided to do it. Then I was about half way up and what a coincidence but Fergie (Black Eyed Peas) is singing Meet Me Halfway. It was literally half way up the mountain and just over half way into my run. I had a good giggle.

As I popped up higher on the road I saw the final incline and it’s a doozy. This is a section of road that they have to close down during snowstorms due to cars not being able to get up it in snow. I’ve seen buses not get up this incline and get stuck. I had never run this road. Today was the day I was going to conquer. I kept pushing through. My pace slowed but I didn’t stop.

Of course, I’m huffing and puffing and just when I’m a hundred yards or so away, I pass a woman walking her dog and she’s smoking. Oh great I though. Not only am I gassed from running up this behemoth but now I’m basically going to be smoking a cig as I’m just trying to get to the top.

Took me awhile to get my legs back under me but I did. I was happy with my splits over the last few miles.

Now the funniest part of the run happened around mile 6 when I decided to have a Gu. I forgot my water, so taking the Gu was going to be interesting. My mouth was a bit dry but I was able to get the Gu down.

Of course I have it pasted in my mouth and I hit a point where I need to spit. Not thinking, I turn my head, go to spit, and next thing you know it barely leaves my mouth. I basically spit on my face. I wiped it with my hand and of course I see a car passing me. All I could think of was, oh great, probably someone I know.

When I finished my run. I got home and as I walk through the door, the first thing my daughter says to me is, “Daddy, what’s all over your face?”. Of course, I think I’m just a little wind burned or red. I thought, man it was windy but I didn’t think it was that bad. I walk into the kitchen and my wife asks me the same thing. She’s like you have brown stuff all over your face. So apparently, I didn’t wipe off the Gu goober. I simply smeared it into my cheek. Now I’m thinking about all of the people I ran past over the last 2 miles that must have been looking at me like what the hell is wrong with that guy.

Overall, very good run. The mountain took a lot out of me but I was please. I ran the 9.01 miles in 1:28:17 for a 9:48 pace.

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Change Things for the Better!

My work out for today is below the meme but I wanted to touch on this first.

So earlier this morning, I was searching for a quote to post on the Runspirational Twitter and Facebook feeds. I came across the below quote from George Sheehan and it really hit me with everything that’s going on. No matter how you feel or what you believe in, we all can make a difference moving forward. We can make things better for ourselves if we are dedicated, disciplined, have the energy, and the feeling that we can change things. Make changes positively. Challenge yourself every day to be better. Dedicate yourself to you. Learn how to push yourself to be more discipline and devote the energy you need to be better. Feel yourself changing things for the better. It will be addicting, positively addicting and can spread. Know that you are worth it and you have it in you to do it. I know you do. I know I do. Be Runspirational!

It’s been a busy but fun Friday. Today was a cross training day for me. I hit the gym and got on the elliptical for 47 minutes. I concentrated on maintaining a good speed, not as fast as earlier in the week, and keeping my heart rate elevated. According to my Fitbit Surge, I was able to burn 852 calories during my work out. My legs feel good, exactly what I was looking for, before tomorrow’s long run. I’m scheduled to run 9 miles tomorrow so I’m making sure I’m hydrating and getting my legs ready.

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4.5 Miles, New Hat, New Shoes, Oh My!

Today’s training called for a 4.5 mile run. It was a beautiful afternoon here in NJ. Temps in the low 50s and the sun decided to say hello. It got a bit windy at points but I welcomed it as I figured it would be good training for the New Jersey Half Marathon. It’s pretty awesome to be able to run outside on January 26th in northern NJ in shorts and no gloves or winter hat on. Take advantage of it when you can.

I decided to run a course that I like to call my bread and butter. The first half of the route is uphill and makes me push myself. The last half starts off flat and then I get to enjoy a downhill followed by flat, to a small incline to finish off the run.

I felt good today. I ran the 4.5 miles in 41:05 for a 9:07 pace. According to my FitBit Surge, my splits were M1-9:19, M2-9:06, M3-9:22, M4-9:03, M4 1/2 – 8:20 pace. Mile 3 stands out but that was because I had to stop and tie my shoelace. Isn’t it awful when you have to do that? I was feeling awesome too at the time, was in a groove, and that last thing I wanted to do was stop to retie my shoe.

In my mind I decided to tell myself, hey, if you need to stop during your half marathon to drink fluids, this is a good practice for stopping and starting. See, just trying to think positive and use it as a runspirational moment.

I was happy with my run today. Happy with the pace. Great sweat. Felt like I pushed myself today.

So I decided to run with my new Under Armour hat. Things were going great with it. It felt good, fit right, and I even think looked good. I hit some gusts of wind though between miles 3 and 4 though and wearing a hat with a brim wasn’t the best idea. I thought it was going to fly off and out into traffic. I ran a few hundred yards holding on to the brim. Definitely liked it though and happy with my purchase.

A few hours after my run, my new Asics Gel Nimbus 18 got delivered. I’ve been looking forward to receiving these. I go them at a great price on Sierra Trading. Only $89. I am going to break these in and add them to the rotation with my other Asics Gel Nimbus 18 shoes. I’ve been wearing that pair since October, so I’ll be retiring them soon. I plan on trying out the Asics Gel Nimbus 19 shoes soon as I want to rotate between 2 or 3 pairs with my runs. I have a gift card burning in my pocket from Christmas, so I’ll be looking at picking those up in the next week or so.

I’ve been thinking about new pages/things to add to this website. I should be able to hopefully get that added soon.

Have a great and Runspirational day!

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2017 Goals

I figured since I just started this website/blog, Twitter/Facebook/Instagram accounts, now was a good time to put out some of my 2017 goals (even though January is coming to a close). So without further ado I present to you my Runspirational 2017 goals.

  1. Run the New Jersey Half Marathon
  2. Run the Ashenfelter 8K on Thanksgiving
  3. Run the Trinity 5K Reindeer Run
  4. Run a 10K Race
  5. Run at least 5 5K Races
  6. Sign up for a fall marathon or half marathon (just need to wait for the Giants 2017 schedule)
  7. Keep up with this blog and social media posts to help highlight and spread Runspirational awesomeness
  8. Lose at least 30 lbs to get in a better running form
  9. Set a new PR for 5Ks
  10. Set a new PR for the Ashenfelter
  11. Make new runner friends
  12. Make sure I always thank those that help me this year

So we’ll see how it goes.

Oh, today was a cross training day. I did the elliptical for 62 minutes. Was able to get my heart rate up and maintain it through most of the duration. I also was able to keep the steps per minute between 190-200 without holding on to the rails. Working on that. Great sweat and  gave my legs a different work out.

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Soaked But Happy

For those of you in NJ, you know the past two days has brought some ugly weather. I decided to bundle up, brave the rain and wind and go for a run up at the track.

After running the half mile to the track, I was a bit shocked to see someone else had the same “brilliant” idea as me. To the lady running around the track for most of the time I was there, you were very motivating and definitely Runspirational. I have no idea who you are and we did not speak, but your grit and determination helped me fight through the elements today and finish my 6.09 miles in a faster time than expected.

Before I went out the door, I decided I was just going to run today. No looking at my watch, at my pace every other second, just run the over 6 miles until I was done. I covered up my FitBit Surge and away I went.

I totally had thoughts of what the hell am I doing out here in this weather, you could’ve done this on the treadmill, you’re going to be soaked when you get home, I hope my new shoes come soon these things might be water logged for days. LOL. The conversations we have with ourselves. Don’t worry, I had someone positive ones too like this will pay off for the New Jersey Half Marathon. If you go faster, you’ll get home faster. They never said it would be easy, but it’s well worth it. Keep going, you got this. And you know what, I did.

I ended up running the 6.09 miles in 58:36 for a 9:37 pace according to my FitBit Surge.

I had to ring out my gloves four times to get all of the water and sweat out. I was soaked but I was happy. Happy that I pushed it. Happy that I was Inspired to Run and who knows maybe I inspired the other runner.

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Holy Winds Batman!

What a way to start off the week. Brutal wind gusts up over 50 mph and rain here in NJ. Not exactly the safest conditions to run outside in.  When I saw large trees knocked down, branches falling, and items being blown into the roads, I thought twice. I didn’t want to be like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, floating around in the wind. So, I decided today was a good day to go to the gym and hit the treadmill.

I woke up a tiny bit sore still from Saturday’s long 8.05 mile run but not bad at all. I was expecting to be more sore. I knew the easier paced, shorter distance run scheduled would do the trick and it did.

I went to the gym, hopped on the treadmill, put some U2 on, and went to work. Walked for 3 minutes, then ran for 43 minutes and walked for 4 minutes. I ran 4.45 miles and did a total of 4.85 miles. I worked up a hell of a sweat too. Felt really good.

I had to hold myself back from cranking up the speed. I’m still teaching myself that not everyone run I do has to be a buckle up hell on wheels run. I’m learning the importance of keeping my legs fresh. Getting there.

 

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Yesterday’s Long Run

I like to make Saturday mornings my long run days. I prefer to use Sunday as a complete rest day. It’s the one day a week I take off completely. Currently, I run four times a week and do low impact cross training, like the elliptical, two times a week. I’m able to work out each day during the work week, so I prefer taking Sunday off completely to spend with my family.

I’ve been building my base before I start my 12 week half marathon training program for the upcoming New Jersey Half Marathon. I’ve been mixing in runs on the treadmill, roads, and up at the high school track.

This Saturday, I tried a new route and ran for 8.05 miles. I started out running on the road for half mile up to the high school. I then ran a half mile around the track and went back to the road. The next mile was all up hill. I then ran into the park were it’s mostly rolling small hills. I love being able to take in the beautiful park scenery, seeing others walking their dogs, or running.

Side note, isn’t it the best to pass other runners on the road? It’s like a family. I always make sure I wave and smile at other runners, no matter how I’m feeling during that run. I get an extra jolt too. It’s really kind of Runspirational :o)

Back to the run. I came out of the park and had a steady uphill to conquer on the course. Such a great feeling to make it to the top and hit a flat part. It sucks while you’re doing it, but it’s so worth it.

I was feeling great and approached the high school around mile 5. I decided to do another lap around the track. It was nice to do .75 miles on the softer surface.

Back out to the road and I hit the final steep but not that long of a hill. I hit it and felt like my speed wasn’t what it could be. I said to myself, come on, you got this. It’s not that long. The fastest you go, the fastest it’s done. It’s amazing the conversations we have with ourselves when running.

When I hit mile 6, I could feel it in my legs. I think my legs are used to runs ending around 6 – 6 .5 miles. Last Saturday, I ran 7.1 miles. That was the longest I’d ever run prior to this Saturday. It’s amazing how our muscles and mind can be so conditioned and you just need to change things up and push them to the next level.

I was able to dig deep and kept pushing. I kept checking my pace as I didn’t want it to dip to slow. When I hit the last .15 prior to my house, I really kicked it into high gear. I try and train to always add a sprint kick at the end so when I race, I know I can push it for the last, short distance to the finish line.

The weather was kind of blah, but the temp was good and it wasn’t snowing or raining. Very good running weather if you ask me.

 

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Welcome to Runspirational.com!

A torn Achilles tendon. That’s basically the root as to where the story begins for Runspirational.com.  The short story is I didn’t care to run, especially really long distances, until after I tore my Achilles tendon in two places. That was rock bottom. I felt horrible from not even walking for a couple of months. No movement at all can make your body feel extremely terrible.

On my 34th birthday, I was far enough along in my rehab that I was allowed to finally run. I remember thinking to myself, if I can run 5 or 10 minutes that will be huge. I ended up going for 20 minutes on the treadmill. It was a birthday gift from my mind. It served as my first Runspirational moment.

After that, I decided I needed something to train for. I found an 8K, the Ashenfelter Classic, that was close to home. The race was on Thanksgiving morning. It also happened to be one year exactly since my Achilles surgery. I thought, it’s not going to be easy, but I’m going to do this. I’m going to work hard, train my body and mind, and I’m going to finish this race. I did and I beat my goals.

There is more to the story, including a home renovation, birth of my son, new PRs, back surgery, and the decision to take on a half marathon. You can read up on it in the About Me section.

Hopefully, if nothing else, this website will be a part of your Runspirational journey. Just know, I’m rooting for you.

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