Tuesday, December 22, 2009

trail running and loving it

This morning Akitla and I did an easy 3 miles on the dirt trails at Lake Lansing Park North, a beautiful park near our house with 8+ miles of hiking trails through woodlands, marshlands, pine plantations and fields. I started running the trails last summer after my hip injury to lessen the amount of stress put on my joints.

Watching the seasons change at the park has been a fantastic experience. I've enjoyed my snowy winter runs at the park probably more than my hot, humid August runs at the park. Last winter I avoided snow like the plague- I'd run on salted bike lanes at the side of busy roads (and cross my fingers that I wouldn't get hit by a car) to avoid having to run on unshoveled sidewalks. This year, I crave my snowy trail runs. There's something extremely peaceful and meditative about running through snow-covered pines. The hilly terrain is difficult to maneuver in the snow (like running on sand dunes), so I take it slow and enjoy the experience.

I leave you with a picture I took out on the trails. I think you'll see what I mean.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Unfortunately, I had to skip my Tuesday morning run. :( Between getting sick and finals week, I couldn't get out of the house yesterday. That means tomorrow's run is going to be especially rough! eek!

On an exciting note, I'm starting to receive donations in the mail!! Thank you, Bill and Aunt Sue, for getting me off to a great start!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Thursday morning was my first icy, snowy run of the season. It was only 2 miles, but I'm not going to lie- it was AWFUL. When Akitla (my puppy) and I left the house at 7:45 am, it was 13'F with a windchill of -1'. The sidewalks were covered in a thick layer of ice and topped with a thin layer of snow. I ran all winter last year, but this was worse than I remember! I'm sure I just need to get used to the slippery conditions and lack of traction.

It was Akitla's first run while snowing, and she made it her mission to chase every falling snowflake. I'm sure you can imagine- she was a lunatic, darting every which way and pulling on the leash. I did my best to keep my balance.

This morning was my second group run with our team. Julie and I did an easy 3 miles with our coach, Lynnae. The sidewalks were still icy and snowy in most spots, but it wasn't nearly as bad as Thursday morning! Each time I run, it gets easier. My hip definitely appreciates that we're increasing our mileage so gradually.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Saturday morning was my first run with the Lansing Team. It was great! We did a 3-mile course around downtown Dewitt, which is a small town north of Lansing. There were maybe 7-10 runners there, plus the two coaches, Bruce and Lynnae. I was also able to meet my fundraising mentor, Lori. Everyone was very supportive and friendly.

Before the run, we had a clinic on stretching and injury prevention. It was very helpful! I learned never to stretch before a run, because stretching a cold muscle could injure it. I also learned what types of stretches and strength training exercises will help guard against injury. I was also able to talk to the other runners about my hip, which was injured last spring when I was training for the Bayshore full marathon. They think my pelvis may be out of alignment. Hopefully with the help and support of my teammates and coaches, I can make it to the finish line injury free!

I ran another 2 miles this morning, with my puppy in tow. We set a new personal record!

Team in Training

I'm excited to announce that on May 2, 2010, I'll be participating in the Cincinnati Flying Pig Half Marathon with Team In Training. This means that for the next several months, I'll be doing a whole lot of running! This blog will be a good way for me to keep track of what I've done and where I'm going as my training progresses.

Formal TNT training has just begun, so I will start posting about my runs. In the meantime, head on over to my official Team In Training page and consider making a donation to help me meet my $5000 fundraising goal.

Thanks for visiting, and stay tuned!