Saturday, September 29, 2012

Certifications, Bikes, Swim Lessons, and a lot of Miles

Wow...the last few weeks have been CRAZY.

Several weeks ago my coach warned me that my schedule was going to start looking like an Ironman schedule. No kidding...yesterday I took a look at what a typical week will be for the next 6 weeks and it does amaze me that I'm going to be doing this week after week...and I'm going to LIKE IT....well, mostly.

Mon: Personal training session, 20 mile bike ride
Tues: Interval training - 5-7 miles
Wed: Personal training session, Speedwork - 4-6 miles
Thurs: 8 mile Tempo run
Fri: Swim lesson, core work
Sat: Coaching plus Long Run (12-20 miles)
Sun: Long Run if not done Saturday

Some weeks there is no day off, although there is enough variety that I shouldn't burn myself out.

You'll notice that there are two very big new things in that schedule...personal training and swim lessons. That's right. I signed up for both. $900 poorer but I have 13 personal training sessions and 6 private swim lessons to look forward to. I had my first PT session yesterday and my trainer, Ryan, completely kicked my butt. It was a circuit type workout that focused mostly on upper body and core, with squats thrown in for good measure and my heart rate was sky high for a lot of it. I feel like not only am I going to get a great workout twice a week but I'm learning a lot of valuable tips for when I start work as a personal trainer.

That's right....I'M CERTIFIED!

On September 13 I took the NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) certification exam and passed on my first try. It was a tough test, I spent countless hours over the last 6 months studying everything you can imagine about the human body and exercise, and now I can begin work training others to find the fitness that is within us all. It's almost surreal. I've talked to friends about employment possibilities and I'm looking forward to where God leads me to be. After 11 years with the "Mom" and "Wife" moniker, I get to add "Trainer" to feels good to have something of my own and to help contribute to our household.

Next Friday I start swim lessons. I decided to sign up for private lessons at a local swim school. Daniella takes lessons at this pool and they have many hours during the day where they conduct private lessons while kids are in school. I thought this would be a perfect fit for me as I'm very nervous about learning to properly swim. The less people around, the better! I hope my instructor, Donna, is ready for me!

Purchasing training sessions and swim lessons wasn't the last of my "bleeding money" week, however. I have a pretty new addition to my family.

Isn't she beautiful?? My very first road bike. She's brand new but I found her on clearance and she's perfect for what I need right now. And she's purple. Because of course I would buy a purple road bike. I'm very excited to get her out on the road next week and see how it feels to ride faster than 13 mph (love my mountain bike, but I'm ready for a bit more speed!). I did a spin workout (my first time!) a couple weeks ago and maintained a 21+ mph average over the course of the hour class so I'm wondering how I will fair out on the open roads. I know I'll be wary of traffic and it'll take awhile to get comfortable but I think it'll be a great experience.

I've enjoyed this view for the past few weeks on my mountain bike, but it's time for the road!

So between running 20-40 miles per week, riding 20+ miles per week, 2 hours of personal training, a swim lesson, and seeking employment, my house should sufficiently go the hell, right?

Poor Greg. 

My weeks haven't solely focused on training, however. I'm trying to find the blessings in the little things and have been taking opportunities to appreciate what and who is around me.

The kiddos started school. I have a 5th grader and a 2nd grader now.
I got to spend a day exploring Austin with this fabulous lady, Tricia
Went to an Eric Church concert with friends Heather and Bre. SO MUCH FUN!

Next up?? I get to wear my Team Luke's gear in my first race representing them. The IBM Uptown Classic, sponsored by Luke's, is next Sunday. Tricia and I get to run together (if she can handle all my chatter!). Really looking forward to it!


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Bucket List

Every time I read about an awesome adventure or experience, I always think "add that to the bucket list." But I've never actually sat down and written a bucket list.

Have you?

Now is as good a time as any to start one, I suppose.

I'll start with fitness related hopes and dreams:

1. Run a sub-4 hour marathon. I've been training to do just that in December, and I'm pretty sure I'm capable with a bit more training. But the wheels started to fall off just a bit, with an injury that kept me from any speed whatsover for a few weeks, plus I was just fed up with the warm summer weather. My injury seems to be mostly resolved and the weather is getting much better. We'll see what the next 6 weeks holds and I'll make a determination on if sub-4 is still reasonable.

2. Run an ultramarathon. I've been saying that I'll do a 50K for my 40th birthday. If I can get my husband to stop saying I'm crazy for wanting to I just might make this a reality in 2014.

3. Boston Qualify. At my age I need to run a 3:40 marathon, pretty much impossible for me at this point in training. I'm simply not that fast and if I tried, I would get seriously hurt. BUT I know I can do it in my lifetime. At 45 I would need a 3:50. I think that sounds really great. I'm not necessarily gung ho about running the Boston Marathon...but qualifying for it would be a huge achievement.

4. Complete a triathlon. I made it a goal to do one in 2013. I need swim lessons and a good road bike. Bring it.

5. Run around Lake Georgetown in its entirety. I think it just looks awesome. 'Nuff said.

6. Run the Rome Marathon. I'm thinking 2020. I'll have an 18 year old and a 15 year old. They can be my cheerleaders.

7. Century Ride. If I can do a marathon, with a little (or a lot) of training, I can ride a bike for 100 miles. Ouch.

8. Run Rim to Rim (to Rim?). Grand Canyon. Beautiful. Amazing. Incredibly difficult. Perfect.

9. Back to back marathons. That means two in one weekend. Yes, really.

10. Complete an Ironman. Hahahahaha!!! Totally kidding on this one. No freaking way.

Stay tuned for a Non-running Bucket List.....

What's on YOURS??

T minus 89 Days

89 more days until Marathon #7. You know, the one where I said I'd run sub-4 hours?

That's 12 weeks, 5 days.

Or about 50 more training runs.

Okay, so 50 more runs before the marathon actually sounds okay. I'm going to focus on that statistic.

Since my last update I've run a 10k night trail race (so much fun!!) and logged my longest training run of the season (16 miles). I've worked through about 90% of my piriformis issue and THE WEATHER HAS BEEN GREAT! During my 16 miler two days ago it never crept above 67 degrees and was just wonderful. You know, as wonderful as 16 miles of running can be.

This week will be one of my biggest training weeks so far. In a 7 day stretch I will run 45 miles and I've never even gone above 40 miles in a week so this will be huge for me. I'm doing a tempo run the day before a long run, which will either be really dumb or just make me tougher. And strangely, I'm at the point in training when 12 miles is a "step down" week. It's all just getting really REAL right now and I'm trying to keep perspective and just focus on my workouts.

Will I be in shape to run a sub-4 on December 9? I really don't know, but I'm going to continue to train like I can and hope it all comes together. Strength, core, foam rolling, stretching, biking, running....and repeat.