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So this is where the sidwalk ends...

Posted Jan 01 2011 12:00am
Happy 2011!  I'm so excited for the new year, especially to start the count for my 1,000+++ miles.  I told you I'd provide a little more info on it soon, so today seems like the perfect day.

First, I'll talk a little about my run, then I'll get more into the details for the year. 

I started off the year on the right foot (or maybe the left, it's hard to tell).  I woke up and I have to admit, I wasn't really ready to run.  I didn't feel like running the moment I woke up.  Ryan, on the other hand, was completely ready.  I kind of lazed around for a few minutes (or 20) until he finally said, "well, I'm going to go running, you don't have to go, if you don't want." You know I couldn't let him go without me.  Especially not on the first day of the year.  And even more so when I JUST told you I had that 'gun's a blazin' attitude.   I got on my gear and we headed out. 

It was a balmy 50 degrees out.  It was glorious.  I say balmy with seriousness.  That is balmy in Michigan in January and I'll take it!  We decided to take a different route today.  It was a little muddy, but otherwise it was pretty ideal.  We got all thrown off when we got stuck at a traffic light though and didn't get to run again for at least a full minute.  This put my first mile at around 10:00 because of it and I wasn't too pleased about that.  We said next time we take that route, we'll just run up and down the sidewalk until the light turns.  (Genius! I know!  Not sure why we didn't think of that today). 

Anyway, there are a few areas right near us where the sidewalk ends and they post big signs that say, "SIDWALK ENDS".  Growing up, Ryan and I both liked the Shel Silverstein book 'Where the Sidewalk Ends', so we always laugh and say, "ohh, so this is where the sidewalk ends!"  (Hey, I never said we weren't huge dorks.  We are, in fact, HUGE dorks.)  Either way, on the way home, I told Ryan we just had to have our pictures next to the sign.  So here they are

I was excited to be next to the sign.  Ryan?  Not so much.  We ran a straight line and back.  The first 1.5 miles seemed never-ending, especially with that little break at the light at .45 of a mile.  I kept checking back on Ryan and he would give me a thumbs up.  What a trooper!  I forgot to mention that when we first started off, my right hip flexor was a little tight, so I was moving a little slower too.  When we got to the turn around on our route, I felt better and could kick it up a little more.  I definitely got a little muddy in this process.  We were nearing the sidewalk ends sign again and I was planning on stopping there for the pic, so I didn't want to stop running then start again.  I figured I would just stop before it and be done for the day.  No use in over-extending myself and making the hip flexor worse.  I wanted to get in at least 2.5 miles, but I wasn't there yet.  Luckily, there was church right near the sign, so I turned in and started doing a few laps in their parking lot.  Ryan didn't find this strange in the least.  He knows my ADD behaviors in running and knows I pick some quirky ways to try to finish up runs.  I ended up doing 2.5 miles in 23.46 (though really I feel like it should be at least a minute less than that since we had to stop, however I won't, just for argument's sake). 
When we got home, we both made sure we did some good stretching.  Ryan's legs got a little tight near the end and he had to walk.  We finished the workout walking back 1/4 mile (though I didn't count that in my time/mileage).  He did 2.25 in 22.46.  Overall, it was a good way to start off the new year. 
Okay, onto the 1,000 miles.  I wish I could say I came up with the idea on my own.  I didn't.  Rather, Mel over at Tall Mom on the Run did.  (Check her out at ).  Since I don't know how to make fancy buttons for my blog, (help!) I just copied the pic she has on her sidebar (that actually IS a button) and posted her URL under it on my sidebar.  This is only a temporary solution until I can figure out how to put the two together.  I would greatly appreciate the help!  Anyway, she has a club and she even sends out a spreadsheet where you put in your weekly mileage and send it to her.  It's a great way to reach a fitness goal and have some support too!
I'm hoping I'll go way over the 1,000 miles.  Ryan guessed closer to 1,500, but I'm not sure about that.  To only run 1,000 miles, I'd have to run roughly 3 miles a day. There will be plenty of days when I plan to run much more than that, so in that case, I can always run higher miles one day, so that I can take another day off. 
Here are my goals for the year and to try to reach the 1,000+ miles.
1.  Run splits of 8:00-8:45 for consecutive miles longer than 2 or 3 miles.  (Right now I feel comfortable doing that for the first few, then I start to get a little slow)
2. Run as many races (and with as many different distances) as possible.  I know I will run at least one 5k, one 10k, the 12k Bay to breakers.  I also have my eye on a 10 mile run in June.  I hope to do doubles of some of these distances though.
3. Run a 1/2 marathon, preferably the Detroit in October.
4. Tack on mileage throughout the year in a healthy way (only increase mileage by 10% each week).  By the end of the year, I hope I can run further than a 1/2 marathon

 I'd like to do a race a month, if possible.  I know it may not be possible each  month or there may be months where I want to do two in one.  However, I feel like if I have something to look forward to each month, it will continue to motivate me.  I plan to count the weeks starting on Monday and ending on Sunday.  I'll add up my mileage for the week every Sunday and post it on here, as well as my year to date totals.  My other goal is to make sure I keep a healthy attitude about this program.  I won't overdo it; I'll listen to my body and stop when needed.  I'll make sure to take days of rest and recovery, as well.

So, that's my plan for the year in a nutshell!  I encourage anyone to check out Tall Mom's site and look more into the club.  If anyone signs up, let me know!  (sign up will actually begin on 1/3).  Even if you don't do that particular goal, if you set a goal, let me know.  I'd love to help cheer you on and it's always great to have support from others :)  I'm so excited for the many running adventures this year!  
What are your goals for the year?
Anyone else decide to join the tall mom challenge?
Any other Shel Silverstein lovers? 


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