Preface – Week One

Hey all! So just to fill you all in, this is the first post of a mini weekly series that I’m creating documenting my accomplishments and shortcomings of training for my first half marathon. Yes, a half marathon. 13.1 miles of crazy, but considering it’s only a half marathon, I would like to think that I’m really just HALF crazy. Does it work like that? I think it does, let’s just roll with that.

My first week of training ended on Sunday 11/26 and boyyyy what a week THAT WAS. LET. ME. JUST. TELL. YOUUUU, to say it was brutal is a minor understatement. Okay, now I’m being overly dramatic, time to reel in the sarcasm a bit and get as close to facts as possible. Just a little preface of me: I grew up an athlete. I played volleyball and softball and absolutely hated anything that had to do with running (now that’s actually no exaggeration). Around the time I was 22 I had joined a gym and got myself a personal trainer. I am a very tall yet extremely thin female, at this point in my life I was roughly 106lbs and scaling in at 5’9, you can see where the problem lied. I weight lifted my life away and soon became an NPC Bikini Competitor in 2014 and eventually got my weight up to 128lbs (score!). The next year in 2015 I dialed down on the yoga and shifted gears into yoga, I was never able to touch my toes my whole life, flexibility was never a strong suit of mine. Unfortunately, in early 2016 I injured my hip and re-injured my knee, causing me to put weightlifting on the back burner. It wasn’t until earlier this week that I actually got back into fitness altogether, ergo, half marathon training.

My whole inspiration for starting this cool little journey is actually because of my aunt that I live with. She embarked on a weight loss journey 10 months ago and she’s been pretty damn inspiring, I mean, she got my ass to join a run club and where I am now…barley able to walk haha. Now, let’s get into the gory details shall we?

Monday 11/20:

6:45pm Boot Camp. Three words. I. HATE. BURPEES. Now, the course wasn’t entirely burpees as we know but for what it’s worth that’s all it felt like it was. Rope swings, jump squats, tricep pull downs, bicep curls, fast feet, side planks, and regular planks. I literally couldn’t walk for almost a week after this (whether or not the runs I did after this played any part in this, I digress).

7:30pm Running Club Evaluation: After boot camp we had to run a 1.5 mile assessment to figure out what pace group you will be running with in our run group. The run group in itself is the actual half marathon training group. Just a little tid bit, there are over 60 people in the run group, that’s 60 people crazy enough to do it in our gym alone. WHAT?! Anyways, back to the assessment. The total distance of that run ended up being 1.56 miles in which I ran it in a total of 14.24 minutes. That breaks down to an average pace of 9:14 minutes/mile, max of 6:10. Now, where we run in Vista, it’s completely hilly. We are constantly running up and down steep hills, and it’s tough. But for my first run in basically ever and not working out for almost 2 year, that was a time I wasn’t even mad at and what I think a great start. (Woohoo!)

Tuesday 11/21:

5:40pm Homework: Our homework this day was 2 miles. Tuesday nights are one of the only days I get to see my partner so I ended up doing the homework after work when I got to his place. Luckily for me, that meant running 2 miles down on the beach in my soon to be home of beauuuutiful San Clemente. How can you be mad at that? In this 2 miles I did it in a duration on 19:12 minutes averaging 9:35 minutes/mile with a max pace of 7:03. With this being a completely flat course, I did take a few steps back. But to my defense, my muscles were still so sore and in shock from working out again.

Thursday 11/23:

6:55am Thanksgiving Turkey Trot: “My biggest fears is marrying into a family that runs 5k’s on thanksgiving”. Well, I did just that, but double. Thanksgiving morning my aunt and I ran the 10k turkey trot down here in Oceanside. For those of you who don’t know, a 10k is 6.2 miles. My goal for this considering I am still so new, getting back in the game, and still incredibly sore was to not so much worry about time, but not make it the entire length of the race without stopping. Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls: I DID IT! I ran the entire 6.2 miles without stopping. I completed the entire race in 1 hour, 4 minutes, 35 seconds. That averages 10:10 minutes/mile with a max pace of 8:15. My fastest mile for this run was mile 2 at 10 minutes flat and my slowest at 10:40. That’s not that bad! I’m still incredibly impressed with that, still have a long way to improve but still, impressed! Not to mention my aunt beat me by 2 and a half minutes, she killed it!

Sunday 11/26:

6am Group Run: Our group run this morning was in Carlsbad. Since we are running the Carlsbad Half Marathon in January we are trying to run similar to the course (thankfully it’s pretty flat). The distance for this mile was scheduled for 4.5 miles and ended up being roughly 4.87, I felt betrayed. I’m not a morning person, so mix mornings (cold mornings at that), running, and being sore equals one grumpy cold bitch named Ashley. I didn’t do very well on this run. I walked a few times, it was just very hard for me to get into the zone with running. I completed this course in 48:41 minutes, averaging 9:59 minutes/mile with a max of 7:26. The only thing that makes me feel good about this, and it’s a bittersweet feeling, is that I walked parts of this course, a few, and I still got down in the 9’s. I just wish I hadn’t walked, but once again, it’s still only my first week of training.

“Runners don’t find excuses not to run, they find excuses to run” well, to be honest, I’ll still find any excuse to not run but I do strive to one day have such a great run that Morgan Freeman will narrate it. Until next post…

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