The Half Marathon Breakup

10.31.17

 

Dear Half Marathon,

You and I… we just don’t mesh.

You demand too much of my time.

Your 10, 12, even 14 week training plans are insane.

You require long distances and hours on sacred weekends.

Each weekend you even go as far as to increase in mileage requirement.

You force short speed work runs during the week in between work, gym, activities, LIFE.

You wreak havoc on my inner workings if you know what I’m sayin’.

 

The forced nature of our relationship is downright draining.

I don’t want to have to stick to your demanding schedule anymore.

It’s annoying.

And who are you to tell me what to do?

What I am getting at here is…

We’re over.

We had some ups and downs, but in the end, our 3-time relationship was beautiful.

I will forever be grateful for the challenge.

It’s not you, it’s me.

And all that other breakup crap.

Sincerely,

The Non-Forced-I-Like-To-Run-At-My-Own-Leisure,

Jordan

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Sunday, October 29th, 2017 concluded my half marathon running days.  From my first half-marathon in 2013 to my second in 2014, it’s been a journey.  A fine one at that.  But, ladies and gents, I am for real done with the training of it all.

I set out on my third half marathon journey in July of this year.  I committed (silently) to run the Good Life Halfsy as my last half-marathon and conquer a new PR of 1:59:59.  My first half I finished at 2:10.  My second half I finished at 2:05.  Surely I could knock out another 5 minutes off my time, ya?

TOTALLY!

And I could have, had I taken the training a little more seriously.

But I didn’t.

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I didn’t account for the amount of time I’d be out of town in September or the work events and travel, I sometimes bypassed a distance run on the weekend due to some of that CRAZY rain we had for a while and I am a NON DREADMILL runner.  I won’t.  Just won’t.   I ran when I could.  I stayed as close to the training schedule as I could.  I realistically reduced my goal time of 1:59:59 to 2:04:59.

And then October hit and I put in one serious distance run of 10 miles and only logged 7-8 distance miles the other weekends, and a few 4-5 milers during the weekdays leading up to the event.   I just was over it.

And I also scheduled my LIFE first, training second. 

I ran an out and back if you are trying to figure out my mapping situation above. 

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No excuses.   I am just not a dedicated runner.  I don’t claim to be.  I don’t want to be.  I have many friends who ARE runners and holy shit they are SLAYING it out there.

Let me brag on Cara for a sec.   She started running (seriously running) last fall.  Competed a few halfs and began seriously training for a full early summer of 2017.

On October 15th she completed her first FULL marathon (26.2 freaking miles) and came in at 3:54:45.

Guys, that is SMOKING fast.  Especially for a first-timer with an average pace at 8:58.   So crazy proud of her.

Cara on the right. 

Tori (marathon master and extraordinaire, dual Boston Marathon conquerer) is on the left and helped coach Cara through her training.

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She LOVES to run.  Lives for it, actually.  The day after her marathon she was running on the treadmill before coming to my PiYo class.

Ok, let’s call it like it is.  She’s a weirdo.

Anyway, back to the story at hand.

You still following me?

Bless you, my child.

I set out on October 29th with no expectations, which is a big deal for me.  I am super competitive with myself when it comes to the mileage and my pace.   Note the keyword there: myself.   I don’t give a darn what others are running at.  I truly don’t.  But I care about how I am doing compared to myself.  But, I also had to be very realistic.  I am most definitely not in what I consider my best shape.  I’m probably the most out of shape I have been in since 2013.   I went through a phase the last 8 months.  Quit master training, cut back from teaching 7-8 classes a week to 2-3 classes a week.   I stopped hitting the weights in August when my work-life balance were competing with each other.  I was burnt out.  BIG time.   And I simply have NOT been motivated to get myself back in the game at my 100%.  I am still in the game, but not playing competitively.

So, Sunday October 29th came, ready or not.

And off I went.

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I had a good playlist set, I was content with whatever time I was going to come in at, I tuned out everyone around me, and I just ran.

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The hubs met up with me around mile 3.5.   He had every intention to meet me again at mile 10, but somehow we missed each other.  I was fully prepared to yell some very explicit language at him.  Sometimes you just need to get your words off your chest, you know?   But instead, my fellow running neighbors got my words.   We had a laugh about it.

And we kept going.

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Miles 10 through 12.5 sucked.  No way around that.   My breathing was on point.   My head was clear.  But my legs…. they were on fire and not afraid to tell me every single stride and step they took.  I had also been nursing a pulled hamstring in the days leading up to it so was overcompensating a little on the right to alleviate pressure on the left, so that played into the leg sensations as well.

With the end in sight and the dreaded HILL at the end (for the LOVE people), I SPRINTED my little heart out the last .25 miles.   I set my eyes on roughly 6 people ahead of me and made it a point to pass them.  I passed all of them, with the last girl getting passed literally two steps before we crossed the finish strips.

Goal accomplished.

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2:10:10

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A respectable time.   A time I am honestly proud of considering all the other factors that came into play in my training and lack there-of.

  • I finished milliseconds faster than my first half marathon that I trained religiously for.
  • I finished in 1,966th place of the 4,505 finishers that day. First half of the group, yo!
  • I wasn’t one of the 47 runners who started but didn’t finish.
  • I wasn’t one of the 2,000 runners who registered but didn’t participate.

It also proves to me that I know I CAN do better, I did it before, and with a little more training I could master my 2:04 time, or maybe even my 1:59:59 time.

But, those days are officially done and over for me.

I like to run for ME.  For the fresh air.  To clear my head.

I like my 3 milers.  I like my 6 milers.  I like to run them when I want to and I like to run for as long as my body chooses to.

Not when a training program tells me to.

So with that, I can officially say…

It’s been a good run.

Cheers to never again.

 

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Special THANKS to the fine folks of the Good Life Halfsy!   This is such a well put together run and event.  I was completely blown away by the organization, the structure, the route, the after party (that I didn’t get to stick around for since I had to be back in Omaha at lightning speed to make my Nebraska Wind Symphony concert).

Well done, friends.

Well.   Done.

Market to Market IOWA | 2016

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Another year with this crazy crew (+1) means:

  1. We were crazy enough to do it again
  2. We tallied about 17.5 hours total in a vehicle
  3. 75 miles of race ground covered
  4. Most of them were ran… I will let you ponder on that and make your own assumptions.
  5. Our newest team mate is a bad influence.  See #4
  6. Or that’s what the rest of my team led me to believe.  See #4
  7. We love her anyways.  See #5
  8. Sunny days are better then cloudy days
  9. Bridgette is SnapChat obsessed
  10. I love taking selfies while running just to listen to my team bitch
  11. Jenn changes her clothes often
  12. Troy is the best driver, ever.
  13. Sara doesn’t like to run but yet, she still joins us every year.  That’s how cool we are.
  14. Blair is full of the best one-liners.
  15. Brad organizes this every year, so we really should question his ability to make life decisions.
  16. Not sure what that says about us who join him.
  17. Never underestimate Brian and his quietness.  EVER!
  18. With that said… pay attention to Brian.  He will pull something over you.  Or off him. See photo number 7 for reference.
  19. Pay attention to the rule book.  The after party tends to get moved.  You’ll be incredibly disappointed when you walk to the former location.
  20. Burgers at the end of the race is the way to go.
  21. And Beer
  22. And Ice Cream

Market to Market IOWA 2016 is a wrap!

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It’s The Weekend Mash-Up

Last week I traveled for work Wednesday thru Friday.  While I had all intentions of running while away, the reality is it didn’t happen.   Wednesday morning before I left town I was able to get a quick lifting session in at the gym, but Thursday and Friday?  Forget about it.  We can thank some questionable food on Wednesday night that led to some unfortunate stomach pains and minimal sleep the rest of the week. Sure makes focusing on meetings an interesting task.

Once back home Friday night, Clint and I opted for an evening in.  We rented a movie, I ordered Jason’s Deli and the couch is where we remained for the evening.  It was glorious.

Saturday morning I woke up feeling great and took off for a 4 mile run.   The weather was beautiful, and for the ridiculous low amount of miles I’ve put in over the last few months, my pace was pretty impressive.

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After my run I was feeling like something light for lunch so I hit up our newly renovated Hy-Vee deli.  The sushi?   Seriously, so good.  They’ll even make it right there for you if you ask.

Kudos, HyVee.  You’ve got this customer satisfaction thing figured out.

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Clint looked at me like I was nuts when I suggested we eat sushi and have a beer in the backyard at lunch, but he totally dug it.   See… I’m not so crazy, honey.

After lunch, Kyle stopped over.  He was back in town for the weekend to see a buddy and so he came over to help Clint get Ruby running again.

You could darn near see Clint’s heart on his sleeve that afternoon.  

He was beaming ear to ear that his little buddy was back in town.

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While they tinkered with their toy, I baked some white chocolate oatmeal scotchies.  They turned out super yummy, but they looked terrifying.  Trust me.   I don’t know what it is with me and cookies, but I am going to blame it on my oven for uneven cooking.   Yeesh.

Picture?  Not even going to happen on these suckers.

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Anyway, do you ever get the feeling you’re being watched?

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Yep, these creepers watched my every move while I baked.

Someone should tell them that to be a successful stalker, one must be incognito.

Saturday afternoon I had the itch to get out and ride, so I called up a few girlfriends and we hit the road.

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Anchor Inn, Joe Banana’s, Doghouse Saloon and back to Anchor Inn.

It was a beautiful night for a ride with the gals.

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Tracy, Me, Marcy, Elizabeth, Jen

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Jen, Liz, Tracy

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The BB’s

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Eat your heart out.

…or rather, this is my “I forgot my clear glasses” look.

Fail.

I’d like to close this post with the cool things I did on Sunday, however, let’s just say my bathroom floor and I became frenemies thanks to either a bad case of food poisoning catching up with me or an early strand of the flu.

Oh well….

Friday and Saturday?  You rocked.

Sunday – Forget you.

Cheers! 

National Running Day

June 4th is National Running Day!

How many of my readers got out there to pound a little pavement?

 

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What do you run for?

 

Most days for me:

 

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Other days:

 

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Running is therapeutic for me.   Sometimes a hard day at work requires a good run or a long Harley ride.   It was a tough decision for me choosing between the bike and the running shoes… but considering it was National Running Day, I had to do my part.

I almost hit 5 miles, but fell short.  I also had to walk before I hit mile 4.  I never do that.   😦

 

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I have been battling what I thought was strep throat.  After a visit to the doc and a nasty throat swap yesterday, the tests came back negative.  Surprising since I’ve got all the signs of strep hanging out in my throat (gross), but also not surprising because I am not knocked down on my ass like strep normally does to me.  No fever, no aches.  Just tired.   And I DEFINITELY felt it around mile 3.5.

This small incline nearly did me in.

 

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But, hey.  I did it.

Did YOU?!

Also, what on EARTH do you people do with your keys when you go for a run?  Since I have a stupidly large key fob and not an actual key, I can’t loop it through my shoe laces without being incredibly annoying.

My solution?

 

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Yep, it’s clipped to the ol’ shirt and tucked on in.

 

Using my resources, folks.

 

Alright, there is still time to get out there and get a run done.   Even if it’s just running around the block or taking a lap around your yard, do it.

 

I challenge you.

 

 

Cheers!

 

Lincoln Half Marathon- 2014

You guys…

SERIOUSLY on a high right now.

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Completed my second ever Half Marathon today.

 

And you know what else?

I hit my PR!

2:05 

 

That is 5 whole minutes FASTER then last year.

And you remember how I trained this go around, don’t ya?  Weekends.  I ran on the weekends and cross-trained by teaching during the week.

To say I am elated is the understatement of the YEAR.

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To anyone in the Lincoln, Nebraska area….  Thank You!  You guys know how to organize a race.

I have never seen so much support for runners IN. MY. LIFE!

There were people cheering, bands playing, kids giving high-fives, water, gatorade and kleenex every step you took.  I am not kidding when I say every last stretch of that 13.1 miles was filled with someone or something.

 

Lincoln- you made that 13.1 miles seem like 6.   It was fantastic.

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This morning started off in a little bit of a cluster.   My 4:30AM alarm didn’t happen.

Nope!

What happened was my 5:21AM internal alarm clock that was FREAKING OUT!

Race-7am.  Drive time- One Hour.  Parking time and walk to starting line PLUS last minute bathroom break – OMG I am gonna be late!

Ninja like moves happened and somehow my race clothes made it on, my teeth got brushed, my lucky hat made it to my head and my race bib made its way into the car.

And off we went.

No water.  No fuel.

Usually I eat a Clif bar before a long run.  Sometimes I even have a little caffeine.   Clearly THAT wasn’t happening this morning.

Thankfully, I calmed down once we were on our way.

It was going to be ok.

We made it to Lincoln just prior to 6:30am.   Found a spot to park relatively quickly (miracle in itself), hit up the porta-pottys (a must, if you know what I’m saying…) and made my way to a spot in the middle of the pack.

In the middle of 10,500 other runners, that is.

 

And then the wait.

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The race started at 7.  It was 7:32am by the time I made it up to the starting line.  And off I went for the most enjoyable, exhilarating, hyped up 13 miles I have EVER run.

I paced myself at around 9:30 the entire way.  Sometimes I was little faster, sometimes a little slower, but I never broke that average pace of 9:30ish.  Thanks to MapMyRun, my trusty GPS sidekick.

The final results?

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Finishing inside the Nebraska stadium was pretty fantastic as well.

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And my sis-in-law Jamie ran her FIRST ever Half-Marathon.  She did SO great!  Very proud of her for committing and conquering.  Way to go, Jamie!

 

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And of course, a shout-out to my #1 supporter for getting up at the crack of dawn to drive me down to Lincoln to just ‘hang-out’ for two hours while I ran.  He’s pretty awesome.

 

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And THAT my friends, is the end of my Lincoln Half-Marathon recap.   Will there be another?  Not sure.  Time will tell. 🙂

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