Wednesday, March 8, 2017

10 Most Influential People In My Running Life

Hello and Happy Wednesday!!!

We're halfway through the week, and I hope yours has been going well. Mine has been a little wonky, but I think I'm over the bulk of it (read that I'm finally accepting that my period is here and not dying from exhaustion, headaches and irritability) and I think it's going to be a great end to the week.

It's really tough to get motivated during that time of the month (and all the days leading up to it), but I know that my PMS symptoms would feel even worse if I didn't have a regular exercise routine and generally good eating habits. It's funny to think that at one point like 10 years ago I was actually so unhealthy that I had Amenorrhea (an abnormal absence of menstruation). It is really common in female athletes who train really hard and push themselves to the extreme in order to be under their ideal weight. I think it is most commonly seen in ballet dancers, gymnasts and I'm sure it runs rampant in the running community as well. You can read more about it and what is called "The Female Athlete Triad" here.

Anywhoo, my case of amenorrhea appeared within the first two years of me "getting healthy" through extreme behaviors and I had lost way too much weight and was not eating enough to sustain the exercise I was doing, or was vomiting it up routinely.  It only lasted a couple months, but it was pretty intense. I didn't know much about it then, but it definitely scares the living daylights out of me now. Just another reason to take care of my body to the best of my ability.

I guess with all that being said, I should be grateful that I have a period, because it reminds me that I'm healthy and "normal"!

Even with my low energy, some nasty GI issues (I'll spare you details) and intense moods the last couple of days I have managed to get in some pretty Kick-Ass workouts.

On Monday I did this fun little workout from my favorite website Popsugar.

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I knew I wanted something a little less intense than the workouts I have been doing, and this was PERFECT for that. I felt like these moves hit a lot of those little spots that we commonly ignore when doing core work or with exercise in general.

Yesterday I had 5 miles on the schedule. I tend to run a faster pace on my Tuesday runs and had planned on doing some sprints today, but for a moment there this morning I wasn't sure I was going to be able to make out of my house! I had to go back inside and use the restroom TWICE before I was finally able to get my run underway. I'm not sure if it's something I ate, or if I'm just having a tough time in the restroom today... but I think it's finally all done with (and I'm hoping so)

Even with that... it ended up being a pretty amazing run. I completed 5.2 miles in 43 minutes (8:16pace). I was SUPER shocked when I saw this on my Garmin at the end of the run. I was not expecting it at all.

I've been trying this new thing on my runs where I cover my Garmin during my runs so that I can start to just "run by feel". I don't do this on "speed work" days and have only been half applying it on my long runs and the jury is still out. I was trying to use it to help slow me down a little bit, but honestly, I feel like it's making me faster!

One of the other new things I've been doing is listening to Podcasts during my commute to and from work. I just couldn't handle listening to the radio anymore and needed to change it up, and I'm sooooo glad that I did! I've found 3 running podcasts that I listen to religiously and one intuitive eating podcast that I just started (Reviews to Come).

One of the Podcasts is from a blogger that I've been following for a couple years, Ali on the Run. Ali has Chron's disease, but is a total kick ass runner and dog lover who lives in New York and she's just wonderful. She recently started her podcast The Ali on the Run Show and it is giving me LIFE! She only has a few episodes but each one has been more amazing and inspirational than the last. Her podcast is interview style and its just very laid back, fun and informative. Give it a listen if you get a chance.

Today she posted an episode about her 10 most influential people in her running life. Her list was amazing and it got me thinking about Who would be on my list?

So now I'm going to give you that list!

10. Meb Keflezighi. While I'm not really into to Main stream runners ( I only know a handful) this man is a common name in my household. I love watching him run and feel that he is amazing. I would love to get to run with him someday and just talk to him about what he eats, his favorite pajamas and how he likes to spend his down time. Cheers to you Meb for being an American Runner of Color!

9. Katherine Switzer. The First woman to run the Boston Marathon. because... how could you not? Her story is harrowing, brave and inspirational. To overcome the odds and prove the elite running community wrong... and its the 50th anniversary year of her completing that race. What an amazing triumph to women everywhere!

8. My Boyfriend. Adam is the absolute greatest thing since sliced bread. He believes in me 100% and is so accommodating and encouraging when it comes to my running. I cannot wait for us to do our first race together this month at the Paso Robles Half Marathon and see how he catches the racing bug for himself.

7. Alison Desir. This is a new running Idol for me who I got to know much better from the Ali on the Run show Podcast. Alison started the Harlem Run movement to get people of color moving in the streets of Harlem, but is probably more famously known for her Run for All Women to help raise money to fund Planned Parenthood following the 2016 election. Alison is a runner and an activist which makes her an amazing human being. Her appearance on the Ali on the Run Show got me all teary eyed and motivated and once you start scoping her out I bet she'll do the same to you.

6. Monica from Run, Eat, Repeat. This is gonna sound silly, but Monica was the first blogger I found and fell in love with (not romantically, but in the "I wanna be just like her when I grow up" kinda way). I love her blog because its all things food, running and randomness... just like ME! I imagine that if we lived closer, Monica and I would be friends. I've enjoying watching her over the past 4 years and love continuing to learn from her. Check out her site if you get the chance.

5. ARC Run Club. While this is more than one person, it has definitely helped me with running. This was my 2nd race group and I was so nervous about joining them. The run store staff got me out of my Nike's and into my current favorite running shoes (Asics Gel Nimbus... I wear the 18's). The Thursday night fun runs are what keep me coming back. This is one of my favorite places to be on a Thursday night. This club got me out of my comfort zone, made me a better, faster runner and got me my current Half Marathon PR of under 1:45 at the LA Rock and Roll Marathon in 2015. I don't go to group runs during this time of year because its too dark and I'm a horrible klutz and afraid of falling and breaking my life, but I'm excited to go back starting NEXT WEEK! If you're in the area come join the fun on Thursday Nights @ 6pm. They have regular raffles and sponsors that bring goodies (including shoes to test run). A Runner's Circle- Los Feliz

4. My first running coach, Kim. Kim was my coach from Race Pace and who encouraged me and got me ready to run the LA Marathon. Kim always had to put me in my place when I tried to get too big for my racing britches and was so wonderful with answering all my (what seemed to me) dumb questions. She has since moved to Arizona but we stay in contact through Facebook.

3. My first running buddy, Jenny. I met Jenny while I was training for my first marathon with Race Pace. We were put together because we were in the same training group. Jenny had run LA many times and was not a noobie to this whole experience. At first, I thought she hated me... but then learned that we both just hated being up and running so early on a Sunday morning. I cherished those miles together and miss having her as a running confidant. She has since moved to San Diego and I swear I will never see her again, but I love her for helping me get through the Best and Worst Day of my life!

2. My Mama. This woman (while not a runner) has always been my #1 cheerleader and supporter. She has gone to a handful of my races (including the LA Marathon) and has never once ever told me that I was anything short of amazing. Although my mama cant physically be at my races anymore I wear a Ruby guardian angel pin (mine and her birthstone) for good luck and extra support on my longer runs. 

1. My Aunt Kri. This woman got me into running and racing. She signed me up for my first Half Marathon (the Tinkerbell Half Marathon at Disneyland- I think 2012), introduced me to my first running group and coach (Race Pace in Moorpark, California) and kept pushing me to run outside my comfort zone and take on new challenges. She is a former figure skater who is now a Bad Ass Ironman (Ironwoman?!?!) competitor who finds fun in doing mulit hour/multi sport brick workouts (no thank you). She has paid for numerous races for me, bought me many a pair of running shoes and is currently trying to talk me into doing a tough mudder with her. I politely declined but look forward to the day when we can run together again.

Wow.. This list was actually harder than I thought. Hope you enjoyed it.

Who are your inspirations?
Are you a motivation to anyone else?

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