Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Finding Time

I have recently found extra time just laying around in my week, not doing anything. Seriously.

When people talk about fitting in exercise there is often the question of time. I have learned that if you really enjoy something and it is important to you, you will make time for it.

I am fortunate to work in an office that takes 45 mins lunches throughout most of the year. In the summer we get 1 hour lunches, but that's another story.

I have started training for this half marathon and committed myself to running a minimum of 3 times/ week. I know that doesn't sound like much, but with full time work and family commitments, it's what I can balance.
Even those three runs are hard to schedule as one of my goals for this race was to not take any time away from family while training. This means that I had to start getting up reeaallly early in the morning or get it done realllly late at night.

Neither of these options are in my best interest. I'm not likely to get up early when it's still dark and there is fresh snow on the ground. It also wasn't the safest idea for me to go at night. What is a busy mom, working full time to do? Run at lunch!

I don't know why it took me almost two years of working in this job to realize that I could be using my lunch breaks to 'Runch'. I guess it took me to actually commit to a training schedule, which I haven't done in two years. Hmmm, funny how that works.

So my 'runch' time has become a hectic, but joyful moment of the work week. Here is my breakdown of events.

Night before: pack running clothes, shower gear and lunch I can eat at my desk

Half hour before lunch: plan my route while eating a small snack

Lunch break begins: get out of office attire and into running clothes (this process takes about 5-8 mins that I hope will decrease as the weather gets nicer and I won't need as many layers )

Get outside and run! I work in a downtown area with heavy foot traffic. The runs have mostly been stop and go, so I usually try to pick up the pace and turn them to intervals. I've been able to get between 3-5k.

Post run: race to washroom to clean up and get back into running attire. (I'm fortunate that my office has a shower in the washroom, I'll have to explain my 1 min. shower another time)

Back at desk: eat my  packed lunch while finishing my afternoon work

End of day: relax and enjoy time with family knowing that my workout is done for the day!

It's a little hectic and takes extra planning the night before and even the day of. I have to work around meetings or other commitments that may happen over lunch hour. But I've realized that my runches will save my training plan.

Where have you found the time to train or do anything else you may enjoy? Was it hiding under the couch?

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Taking the Leap

After taking a somewhat extended hiatus from training, I’ve decided to take the leap to do my first half-marathon.

 I have never trained for anything over 10miles and that was two years ago. Since then, I've only done shorter distances and trail races (another topic for a later date).

I have been inspired and motivated by my run-buddy, Kim. Knowing that I will have someone to stay accountable for and some company for those long runs, has kicked me into action.

And by action, I mean starting out a training schedule, not actually signing up for the race…yet.

So here are the deets:

The Race: Niagara FallsWomen’s Half Marathon

I always said that if I did a longer race (ie. half or longer) for the first time, I would want it to be a smaller, local race. I can get carried away with the crowds and overwhelmed by small details, like shuttle busses. My run-buddy Kim ran the race last year and loved it so much (even though it was a real tough one for her) she wanted to do it again. In 2011 it was the race’s inaugural year and they have received high praise for their organization. The best part is that you can park right by the start line! For those of you who race, you know how exciting this is. 

The second best part? A bottle of wine in the swag bag. The third best part: Katherine Switzer, woman running pioneer, will be part of the whole event. The fourth best part…really I could go on. Basically, this race has it all. 

The Plan: 15 weeks, custom made

I created a plan for myself based on several resources. A torn out page from an old copy of Runner’s World magazine, it was only 10 weeks and all in miles so I had to convert it all. The Another Mother Runner’s “Finish It” Half Marathon plan. It was 16 weeks and included some optional workouts (less guilt is always good). I also had to adapt these schedules to my actual life. The nitty-gritty of when I would do the plan workout. The process looked like this:

 I'll post details of training as I go.


The Goals: Live to tell the tale

Being my first ever half-marathon there are some goals I would like to achieve.

  • Complete the training as best to my ability without making my husband resent me and my kids    forgetting who I am.
  • Get to the starting line injury free
  • Enjoy the race! Take in the sights and sounds and people around me.
  • Set a realistic target time (and a secret target time) and work hard to get there.
  • Savour the hard-earned taste of that wine after the race

Not so difficult, right?