I wanted to take a second and thank everyone who read my blog over the last few months. Even though this will be my last post, my jouney is far from over. Over the last two months I saw myself go from struggleing to run 6 miles in 58 minutes to running 10 miles in 83 mintues. I can now run an entire long run (consisting of 10 or more miles) in under 8:30. A lot of work went into my training and it all paid off.
Now, as I close this chapter, I open a whole new one. I am no longer a beginner. My goals are starting to look like the goals of an experianced runner who wants stronger performances everytime he steps on the pavement. By next year I would like to be close if not succeed at qualifying for the Boston Marathon. I would have to run a sub 3:11:00 marathon. Although that time is far beyond what I can do at the moment, I know if I put in the work, I have a shot at it. I will not quit until I do it (and probably not after either). I am starting this March with a marathon in South New Jersey. My goal for this race is 3:30. Right now I can run at a 3:45 pace. So I am attempting to knock of 15 minutes of my pace. I will not be dissapointed if I fail this March, but I should come close. If I don't get there, I'll try harder next time.
Good luck to everyone! I hope my post inspires one person to better their life, like I have. I have never felt better.
Train hard, Train smart and Stay healthy. Take care.
Less than two weeks until my first half marathon in over 8 years. Wow! Have I come a long way. So much has happened since I decided to become a runner. I have lost 50lbs, I cut minutes off my long distance and short distance mile times, I have reached new levels of fitness that I haven't seen since my college wrestling days. It seems that was so long ago.
Last week was my best week yet. Which is good, becasue I am taking it a little easier this week in preparation for the race. I still will put about 23 miles in, but I will not be running as hard. Last Wednesday I ran about 3.5 miles at a nice pace. It was a good run and I felt great. I then ran my hill work out, 5 miles over very steep hills. I ran it in 43.57. Then came my ten miler on Sunday. Wow! What a run that was. My first 5 miles came in around 42 even which for 5 miles was a personal record. I was worried that I might have pushed to hard. However, on the second 5 miles, I matched it! I couldn't believe it. I had just ran a 1:24:07 10 miles. When I started I was hoping to just get it under 1:40:00. I beat that time by 16 minutes. What an improvement. It has been a real confidence booster just before my run. I will run slower this week to help heal and get stronger for the race. I can't wait!
Due to my recent sucess, I have changed my goals. I am scheduled to run a marathon in Cape May, NJ in March. It will be my first. My goal at this point is to come in under 3:40:00. I think I can do it. It will be one of the greatest acheivements of my life. I look forward to pushing my self to obtain it. And within a year, I would like to be training to qualify for both NYC's and Boston's Marathons. For my age group 3:10:00. I think I can obtain that one as well. It will be a lot of hard work, but I think I can do anything.
What a great bounce back week! The week before, I had some set backs. Felt like my times were not what they should have been, and my overall performance was just not satisfactory. However, this week was a complete 180 degree turn around. It started slow with my morning run on Tuesday. I ran a slow 5 miles. Not what I wanted to do, but it happend. Then on Wednesday I ran 3.1 at a personal record. Thursday I ran my hill work out faster than I did the week before by more than a minute. I was stoked. But, the real difference maker was my 9 mile run on Sunday. The week before, I also ran 9 miles. I ran it at 1:26. I was happy with the time, but not thrilled. However, this week I ran the same distance at 1:22. A four minute improvement!
The difference was my attitude. I wasn't sure why I couldn't run the distances in the times that I wanted. I was frustrated. Then around 5 miles I decided to really push myself. I knew I had plenty of gas in the tank to finish the run, so I took off. I ran the last four miles in 34 minutes. which for that distance alone is a personal record. After I finished I felt great, could have easily finished another three miles, if not at that pace, then a tad slower. I was extremely happy, becasue this puts me under my goal of running a sub 2 hour half marathon. Today, I ran 5 miles faster than the week before. All in all it's been a fantasitic week.
I think the difference in my running is attributed to my attidude. It didn't occur to me that the reason I wasn't performing as well as I would like, was due to not pushing myself. Sometimes I think we get caught up in not pushing ourselves to hard, in order to prevent injury. However, sometimes you need to suck it up and run harder. I truly believe it is a major element to improving.
Wow, I got threw a nine mile run on sunday. Not only was it the farthest I have gone in a few years (8), but it was the fastest I have gone so far on a long run. I was excited. However, I am hurting a little more than usual. I don't think it was due to my run, but the over all toughness of the training. I still am enjoying my runs, they're just becoming harder. I will stay at this distance for one more week. Just to see if I will perform better, and perhaps, heal faster next week. I think I can handle the half marathon distance. Most runners have told me, once you are at 9 miles, the last four are very doable.
I decided to enter a March 2010 marathon in Jersey. I was told the course is very fun. I look forward to doing it. the training starts a week after my November 22 half marathon in Philly.
Sorry, I don't have much more time to write today. I promise more next week. The life of a full time law student who works 20 hours a week and is training for marathons. However, I am sure someone has less time than me.
Another week has gone by, which means another week to report. 21 miles completed last week. All very good runs. Ran 8 on sunday with ease and in new PR mile splits. I was ecstatic! It was nasty weather too, so I was happy. I would like to be prepared for my next race, no matter what the weather is like.
I would like to discuss how running became fun for me. At least for any new runners out there that might peek at my blog, this could possibly motivate you to keep on going.
Well about six months ago, maybe a little bit longer, I decided to devote my training purely to running. Before that I was also weight training, but not getting the total fitness results I was looking for. Therefore, I decided to devote my time to improving my running. At first it was extremely difficult. I was booking in a few more miles than I should have. I think I started out at two miles a day with a long run on Wednesday of three miles. I know "Wednesday" not the best day to pick for my long runs (I work and go to school full time). I didn't occur to me to consult expert runners and recreational runners for advice on how to become more of a runner my self.
When my shin splints started to fade becasue of my increased weight loss and stregnthining of my calves, I decided to find out about a good pair of running sneakers. I found out about things like a good pair sneakers will last anywhere between 250 to 500 miles before the midsole broke down. I also learned that the sneakers I was wearing only last up to 200 miles max. Since it has now been about 3 months from the time I bought them, it is safe to say they were dead.
Now I had a good pair of sneakers, I began to run a lot more. I was putting in about 3.5 miles a day, six days a week. Another mistake. What can I say, I was a beginner. At this point, running still felt like a chore. I was not happy doing it yet. However, I was getting weight loss results, so I kept at it.
My sister, who is a runner, and has competed in a few half marathons, talked me into entering the philly half marathon on November 22. Now I had something to train for. I looked up some training schedules, and followed them. Making adjustments for when I thought I need an extra week at a certain distance before increasing. before I knew it I was running 5 miles easily twice a week, a short 3 mile run on Wednesday and 8 miles on Sunday for my long run. Running had just become fun.
Someone at work asked me how I find time to get my runs in (between work and school, my week is insane). I told them, since running became fun, I stoped finding excuses not to do, but now I am finding excuses to go for a run.
The moral of the story is simple. For all of you beginners out there like myself, finding motivation is the most important aspect of getting fit. The second most important aspect, is finding what is right for yourself, and listinging to the advice of people doing what you want to do. More experianced people, whether it's running or it's a professional field are extremely important aspect to your training. Listining to people that have done it before you is a very important key to success.
P.S. Going for a 9 mile run on Sunday, and looking forward to it!
May last two runs were in the morning around 5:30 AM eastern time. Sunday was about 40 degrees and today was about 45 degrees. I have purchased some good running tops that keep me dry. However, the first 5 minutes are cold. It's always hard to get used to the transition from summer to fall then to winter. Although since I am running more in the morning, I think my transition will be somewhat smooth. I will have to make sure I layer properly. You don't want to wear to much clothing on long runs, becuase you will get to hot and lose water faster. Another interesting change is daylight. My morning runs don't get anymore of it. Today was the fist time I finished before sunrise. I ran 5 miles.
Well, my runs have become easier. 5 miles is easier for me than 2 miles were just a few months ago. It's real exciting. Sunday I ran 7.25 accidently. I was supposed to run just 7 because I was in a area I wasn't familier with. Originally, I was scheduled to run 8 miles, however, I cut a mile off because I didn't want to get lost on my trail. It turns out I did anyway, but only for a quarter of a mile. So, it was not a big deal. Last week I had a new PB. 41:20 on a 4.5 mile run. Two miles up a hill. I was excited about how great I felt.
My weight is continuing to fall off. As a matter of fact, I am going to adjust my diet this week. I am now at 174lbs. My goal weight is 160lbs. However, since my running is going to increase by two miles this week, I am going to increase my calorie intake as well. I want to keep my weight loss healthy. I think with the amount that I am excersising, I can afford a few more calories per week. It is hard to slow down the weight loss, because I am so happy that I have lost so much over a somewhat short period of time. However, I am doing this to be fit and healthy, not to make weight for a wrestling match.
I had another great running week. It started slowly with a tough run last tuesday. I was a little sore from my long run in the rain that previous Sunday. However, I rebounded nicely on Wednesday with 3 miles at 24:30 a personal best for that distance. Thursday, rounded out my week with a tough hill run. I ran 2.25 miles up a steep hill. It was a great run. I was running with a friend, which made the run a lot more interesting. He was having trouble controlling his breathing up the hills, but we worked it out and sucessfully completed the run. My time was, if I can remember correctly, 43:30. Not bad considering all the hills. This week, since I am half way through the first leg of my training (the half marathon leg), I cut my miles back from 22 to about 20. I cut out the 4 mile run on Saturday and walked two instead. Sunday I increased my long run to 7 miles. It felt great! I handled the distance fantastically. It was very hard for me not to go further. Monday was a strength and stretch day. This morning I got through my run nicely with a time of 42:30 for 4.5 miles.
My training is going fantastic! Looking back on the day in mid November when I decided to make a life change and get back into shape, I realized how far I have come. I have lost 39 pounds, become fit and I fell great! It took a while for me to get back into enough shape where I could see real results, but now I am better than ever. Sometimes I look at myself, and can't belive I let myself go as bad as I did. I am so glad I got on the scale last November and was disgusted with how bad my health was. I am enjoying life and more disiplined working in my profession. Being Healthy really does make a difference in performing at life.
I look forward to this next week, one day at a time!
Sorry I didn't post on my blog yesterday. As most of you know they were updating the site, and I could post. As for the site, it looks awesome!
This week was great. I have hit another mile stone with my weight. I weighed in at 180 pounds. Which is the lightest I have been in 5 years. My feet stopped hurting on my long runs, which was great. What I did was loosen my laces to account for foot swelling. Great tip thanks to the helpful discussion thread. I knocked a full minute of my 6 mile run on Sunday, and today I ran three miles in 24.40, not bad for someone who couldn't run a mile about 9 months ago. I loving all the comments from my friends and colleagues about my weight loss. It's real motivating when all the hard work I put in gets noticed.
The only thing that didn't go well for me this week was the 4.5 miles I put in on Tuesday. I was a bit slower than usual. I can attribute this decrease in time from a slower recovery. I didn't stretch properly after my long run. Therefore, I paid the price. I am going to cut my miles running down from 21 to 19 this week. However, I will cross train on Saturday for about 50 minutes to make up for the lost mileage. My long run this Sunday is getting increased from 6 to 7 miles, and I am stoked! I mapped out a nice run in Astoria, NY. It pretty much runs through the entire town.
I hope you all are having success as good as I am. It feels great!
Sunday was long run day. Since training for the Half, and being about half way through the training, I put in a nice 6 mile run along the Bronx River Parkway. This is also about the time where I am starting to feel the pain from ware and tear of the training. My feet are starting to experience a moderate amount of pain from swelling within my shoe during my longer runs. However, I must get through them. My legs are feeling great. I can't wait until my next run tomorrow. I am going to run on an indoor track. I will run a little more than four miles. Even though I am sore, I am getting stronger. My speed is picking up, I can now run 9 minute miles for more than six miles. If I pushed my self I could probably go faster. However, I don't want to injure myself. Staying healthy is priority one. Looking forward to tomorrow!
This is the first time I have ever blogged before. I guess I'll start by telling you a little about myself. First, I am a 25 year old law student in the NY area. I went to college in PA, and yes, I was a wrestler with a whole lot of potential. My freshmen year I was a contender to win the conference championship for a spot in the NCAA tournament. However, because I didn't take care of myself properly, I injured my knee which in turn, ended my wrestling season. I abused alcohol, and continued to wreak my body. I never fully returned to my potential and started to lose to less quality athletes than myself. I quit the wrestling team my junior year of college. My excuse was to focus more on my studies. Although, the real reason was due to the embarrassment of loosing to a very inferior wrestler. After college, I had ballooned to 220 pounds. I was a 157 pounder in college. The first year out of college I lost about 20 pounds, mostly from not drinking. Also, I began coaching wrestling at a local high school. The following year I entered law school and gained the 20 pounds back. Toward the end of my second year of law school, I got on a scale after a wrestling practice and was back at 217. Disgusted in how I have let my fitness become so poor, I decided to make a major changes in my life. Less than a year later, I have gotten back into shape and weighed in today at 185. I am now training for the Philly Half Marathon coming up this November. My ultimate goal is to become a marathoner starting with the 2010 NYC Marathon.
This is going to be a weekly blog about my training and how I feel. Feel free to comment on my progress or share any stories of your own journey with me. Take care, Train hard and Train smart.