Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Race Report: Valentine's Day 5K Date Dash

Saturday morning I had 10 miles scheduled, instead I ran a 5K.  Pretty good trade, wouldn't you say?  But to help keep my mileage up, I went out before the race and ran 4 miles at a 10 min/mile pace.

This was my very first race that I ran completely alone.  I've run other races by myself, but my husband has always been with me at the start and finish line.  Saturday morning, he didn't want to take a 15 month old out in the cold so they stayed home and I went all by my lonesome.

I got to the start line about 10 minutes before the start and stood around by myself sizing up my competition.  I had my eyes on a couple of ladies - but it turns out I didn't need to worry about most of them.

The race started and I wasn't as close to the front as I had wanted, so for the first mile I was picking off people left and right.  That kind of a start gets me pumped, but also kind of freaks me out because I think that I might be going too fast and maybe these people know how to pace themselves better than I do?

Either way, I kept pushing.  Mile two brought a small incline and a water stop (who stops for water in a 5K?), where I had my eyes on a redheaded guy in front of me.  He stopped for water and I was able to ALMOST catch him before he started again... also, I had tried a new flavor of GU before the race.  It wanted to come back up at the end of this mile.  I don't know why I even tried the Espresso flavor - I hate anything and everything coffee flavored/scented.  So I was gagging even before I put it in my mouth.

Mile three was winding through neighborhoods and lots of turns which doesn't let you see how many people are in front of you, which is good and bad.  The redhead was slowing down and as I pulled up next to him I told him that we couldn't let those two girls in pink bet us in!  (I had been gaining on those two in pink for the whole race and now in the last half mile they started to pull away from me.)  Luckily, Red wasn't upset at me for talking to him, but was glad for the extra motivation and we ended up running the last half mile together.  I even told him to kick it up a notch at the end so that he didn't get beat by a girl, and he did.  He beat me by 2 seconds at the finish.

I really wished that I had remembered what my 5K PR was when I went into this race - I finished in 24:40, which was 2 seconds slower than my current PR.  BAH!  Why did I waste breath talking to Red??

I ended up finishing as the 9th woman overall and second in my age group.  Another medal for me!  YAY!

This is the first race in a series put on by my city, and you get points for how well you place in each race.  Because I finished in the top 10, I get 50 points... and after my first race of the season, I came home totally pumped about running and racing and trying to plan out the rest of the race series around my other races that I've already signed up for.

It was a really good race, and I loved that it was so close and easy to get to/pick up my packet.  (I was able to grab my packet before my 4 mile run the morning of the race.)  And I made a new friend in Red (but why the heck didn't I ask him his name?) who chatted with me until they gave out medals.  He was telling me about his disgustingly huge omelettes that he makes on Saturdays that have 12-15 eggs in them.  YIKES!

Next race in the series is on St. Patrick's Day and I'm supposed to run 12 miles that day... I don't know how I will work that yet.  But I need a new PR, so I'll figure it out.

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Post Where I Talk About a Training Run

Happy birthday to me!

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Saturday morning I went for a 7 mile run along part of my upcoming half marathon's course.  We started before the sun was up and the first couple of miles were CHILLY (in the 20s), but then we hit a nice hill and that helped to get me warm about half way up.

At the turnaround point my running partner pointed out a couple of young bucks.  So I pulled off my phone and tried to get a picture.  Unfortunately the camera lens fogged up after I pulled it off my arm.
Crystal clear.

So I tried again.

Overall, it was a great training run with an average pace of 10 min/mile.  Nothing too fancy, but there was a hill (twice) and some walking.  But its good to be able to get out on to part of the course and see what you can do.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

I Finally Lost the Baby Weight

Hi, my name is Whitney and I really like food.

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A couple of months ago, I started a weight loss "competition" with my family.  And as of today I have lost 5 lbs.

I know it doesn't sound like much, but it's a pretty big deal to me.  I am now officially 2 lbs lighter that I was when I got pregnant in 2010 (almost exactly two years ago).

"They" say that when you get pregnant, it takes 9 months to put the weight on, and 9 months to get it off.  But for me it was more like 9 months + 6 months.

Let me tell you something again: I really like food.  And not the food that is good for me (although, yes I guess I like some of that stuff).  But I really like candy.  And cookies.  And brownies.  And Doritos.  And Mexican Coke.  And candy.  And chocolate.  And candy.

Anyway, I have a couple of tools that I want to share that have helped me lose the weight.

First: My Fitness Pal.  Do you know this free app?  Do you have it?  Do you use it?  Because it's AWESOME.  It is so easy (for me) to use.  I always have my phone with me (sidenote: I finally have a smartphone), so any time that I eat ANYTHING I enter it into my app.  And it has this great barcode scanner as part of the app, so it makes adding food super easy.
Also, it tracks your exercise and you "earn" more calories when you workout.  So it's extra motivation for me to workout, since I like to eat.
Get this.  Use it.  Add friends (like me, luckyduckywb).  Love it.  Lose weight.

Second: The Nike Training Club app.  This one is geared for women, but that doesn't mean guys can't use it too!  In fact, maybe that's more of a plus for the guys, because they have pictures and video of how to do all of the moves, and the girls are mostly in shorts and sports bras.  Anyway, this is super convenient when the weather is bad, or when my husband isn't home and Katie doesn't want to nap after I get home from work, because for a lot of the workouts you don't even need weights.  It's your own little personal trainer that counts down until the next move and then beeps and tells you what to do next.  I love it.  And so do my legs.

And yes, I'm also running.  I'm training for a half marathon at the end of March, but when I started the family "competition" I wasn't doing any running, so these two apps helped me lose weight during the holidays.  And that is a major WIN in my book.

And maybe my clothes still fit the same (for the most part), but I feel different in them. 

Yes, I still have a muffin top, but that is just more motivation to keep working on it.

It's my birthday on Monday.  And as a reward for my weight loss, I bought myself two pairs of running shoes.  Yay me!