Friday, October 7, 2011

Training for a Half Marathon....sort of

Temperatures have finally cooled down outside, encouraging me to start exercising outdoors again. While my job offers a free gym membership onsite, I have failed to take full advantage of all of its features. Instead, I joined a free weekly running club. Who wouldn't want to be rewarded for exercising?

Each Tuesday, my husband, some friends, and I run one lap (3 miles) around the park. We log it into the system, and after 10 weekly runs, we receive a free workout shirt. In addition, the sponsor offers a free meal and drinks afterwards (while supplies last). While I haven't taken advantage of the free food, I just hit 10 runs this past Tuesday meaning I have run at least 3 miles every week for the last 10 weeks! It felt great and I can't wait to reach 20 runs, when I receive half off a much needed massage. 

My husband is an avid runner and will actually be running his 7th marathon this weekend in Chicago. While I was never as motivated to run such long distances, I was finally convinced to run a half marathon...actually, it's a 2 person relay. My sister and I will be splitting the half marathon distance in November, with the first person running 8 miles, while the second runs 5. The trick is to figure out who will run first. 

In the meantime, I have been running on a semi-daily basis. Worried that I may hurt myself, I researched information on proper workouts and came across this article in Runner's World. According to the author, 3 red flags or more may indicate a need to take a break. Looking at my own routine, my soreness and pain is still evident but has drastically been reduced since I started stretching before and after every run. My energy level is frequently down when I start running, but I figure it is because I'm not really in the mood. I also haven't been sleeping well- while I still feel rested, I do wake up in the middle of the night. While I don't think I fit every red flag, I do feel it is time for a break. Stay tuned as I work myself up to 8 miles.....

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