Along with my overall goal of being stronger and healthier through my lifestyle transformation journey, I set a goal to stretch myself WAY OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE by doing something I don’t particularly like doing…RUNNING!
In May 2015, I started this part of my journey. On that first day I ran until I got tired which was a little over a mile at about a 12:00 minute/mile pace. I continued to run at least once a week after that, stretching my distance a little further each time. In August 2015, I ran my first 5k (in over 9 years) at about an 11:00 minute/mile pace. In October 2015, I ran my first officially timed race and my first EVER 5 miler. My unofficial pace was about a 10:00 minute/mile, using the app on my phone. When I got the race results I was in awe to see my pace was officially timed at 8:41. I don’t know who’s legs those were but WOW! it made me think, “you never know what you can do until you try it”. Continuing to stretch myself in this area and to mark my new decade (I turned 40 in March) I set my sights on training for the Fall 2016 Philadelphia Half Marathon.
As with any goal, to achieve it, you have to put a plan in place. So I set some intermediate goals of running a 15k and the Philadelphia Broad Street Run (10 miler). This weekend I accomplished the goal of finishing my first 15k, The Philadelphia Hot Chocolate Run. My first EVER medal for running and my pace was a sub-10 minute mile!
To train for this race, I ran twice a week for about 2-4 miles at about a 10:30 minute/mile pace in addition to cross training by doing Crossfit, TRX and Spinning. Up until the race I had not run over 4 miles, with the exception of New Years Day when I randomly ran a little over 8 miles. The environmental conditions on race day were less than ideal – cold and rainy. However, physically I felt I was prepared for the race. Mentally on the other hand it was a challenge. I recall at mile 6 feeling like Forrest Gump and just wanting to stop, turn around and go back home. I wasn’t tired, my mind just started to wonder and I just wanted to stop running. In addition to praying, I used some of the techniques that I coach in my spin classes to help my students focus:
- Deep breathing, filling the lower lobe of the lungs instead of the chest.
- Relaxing my upper body and redirecting the energy to my legs.
- Taking in the sights.
- Drawing energy from others around me.
- Focusing on my goals and why I was pushing myself to continuously running 9.3 miles.
That seemed to help get me back into things mentally to finish out the remainder of the race – STRONG! I focused so much I didn’t even realize I was crossing the finish line until I heard my husband yell my name “Adrienne”. Yes you will hear him in the video below, sounding just Rocky and at the foot of the Art Museum steps – how symbolic!
Next up The Philadelphia Broad Street Run here I come on May 1, 2016!
Maybe running isn’t your thing but there has to be something. Start taking the steps to get to your goal – “See IT, Reach for IT, Do IT, Crush IT!”
Living Transparently on Purpose