Don’t Call it a Diet

Woo-hoo! I am finally officially down 5 pounds! It’s only taken 3 months…

No, I take that negative comment back. This is a moment to be celebrated, not minimized. This will mark the first time in about 3 years that I have made any measurable progress in weight loss. At that is something to be proud of. This is also the longest I have stuck with any kind of exercise routine of any sort. Thank you, competitive streak. I owe you one.

It’s been a really hard, long road, filled with lots of disappoint and the feeling that I would never be able to do.  Making simple choices just didn’t seem to cut it. Making the switch from regular to diet sodas was a really big thing for me. It still is. The only ones I will drink are Coke Zero, Diet Dr. Pepper, and Diet Mountain Dew: Code Red. That’s it. If we are out to eat, and the restaurant doesn’t have one of those three, it’s regular soda or tea. I still haven’t been able to master just drinking water. Gotta have something to go in it. It would take me weeks to go down a couple of pounds, and if I had so much as one day of weakness, *poof* all my hard work obliterated with it.  It takes so much effort to make a difference, and so little to wipe it all out, there are plenty of days that I wonder why I bother. Surely it must be easier to just try to comes to terms with being fat, isn’t it? Maybe, right up until it’s time to go out somewhere nice, and I am so preoccupied with how my clothes refuse to look nice on me that I forget to just have a good time being out. Boo on feeling crappy about yourself.

So I try to eat a little better, make better choices when I stop at McDonalds (which is always easier to do right after a run), make it a point to try to get in some kind of run at least every couple of days, try to eat at home as often as possible (even at its worst, homemade dinners have got to be healthier than anything from a fast food joint), and most importantly for me stop eating whole bags of candy or cookies at a time!!!  (I know it’s not what I said at the time, but thanks for taking the cookies away)

It’s amazing how effective that last one is…

And now, on top of slowly making better food choices, I am also running on a (semi-) regular basis.  Now I just need to start working in a little strength training (I can almost feel Bob and Jillian staring me down…) each week, and start building up some more miles. Nothing crazy, maybe once a week go for 5 miles instead of 3. I need to start building my habits up now, because things are only going to get harder as it gets colder…

5 pounds lost, the beginnings of a new life and perspective gained. That’s a win in anybody’s book.


Race Recap: Redlegs Run 10K 2011

Ah, Cincinnati. We have such a love/hate relationship, you and I. The lovely view of the river from… well, almost anywhere tall.  The never-ending heart-ache as a Reds and Bengals fan. It’s been a rocky road. But I will always stand by you, even when you rain on me.

Side-note: Another important thing to know about me, as we go into this story, is that whenever I get into something new, I research the hell out of it. After doing Cap City and deciding that I was going to start running for real (yes, as opposed to ‘for fake’), I started looking into races. Since I was new to this, I had no idea what races were put on. I knew of a 5k that the Vet School puts together every year, the Columbus Marathon, and The Flying Pig. That was kind of it. So I started looking. If you’re ever in need of finding out what kind of races are available in an area, I highly recommend google-ing “races (insert city).” This led me to a few different websites that compile race information from anywhere. This is how I found the Redlegs Run.  Some combination of searches and links and there it was on the Reds website. The 10th Annual Redlegs Run. It was previously only a 5k, but for their 10th anniversary, they added a 10k.  Score for me. And even better, the course winds around downtown Cincy, and you get to finish on the field of Great American Ballpark, near home plate.  Where do I sign up?

So I register, and start planning the trip. The race is on a Saturday, early (my not favorite part of racing) so Hubby and I plan on heading down on Friday. We’ll come back on Saturday afternoon once the race is done.  In the couple weeks leading up to it, I tried to get a couple of good runs in, but I was still struggling with being consistent and committed. Let’s be honest, the only reason I was still running at all was because I kept signing up for races, otherwise, I would have quit on myself a long time ago.

Anyway, back to the good stuff. Cincy.  We had a nice hotel downtown within walking distance of the stadium, so Hubby and I went out for some dinner and nice relaxing evening.

In a monsoon.

No joke, within minutes of arriving at Fountain Square in downtown Cincy, we were forced to make a hasty decision to basically head into the closest restaurant for dinner before we got drenched.  Unfortunately, due to the storm, there were not many people at the restaurant, and therefor the service was really quick. Too quick.  We managed to stretch dinner out for about an hour, and hoped that it was enough time for the storm to pass over.

It wasn’t. We stood outside for a while, under the restaurants awning, desperately hoping that it would stop pouring rain. Nothing. It just kept coming. Since the race started at an unreasonably early time rather early, I really wanted to get back to the hotel and get some sleep. It was not looking favorable for me. After about 10 minutes of waiting, we made an executive decision. If you’re not familiar with Cincinnati, many of the downtown buildings have (or at least had) a system of passages connecting to one another. I think it is called the “Skyway.” Theoretically, you can walk from one hotel to another, and even to the convention center without ever being outside. We figured if we made a break towards the closest building (which had a Macy’s on ground level, so we could still get in) we should be able to get back to our hotel and not get drenched. And it worked. Sort of. There was one stretch that was outside, but it was short. And it was super sketchy. The kind of sketchy that you see in horror movies right before the zombie serial killer jumps out and starts picking you off, one by one. Hubby was not amused when I pointed this out to him, and then proceeded to point out all the places the zombie-serial killer was likely to be hiding along our path.

Long (somewhat entertaining) story, short: We made it back to our hotel in one piece, and I finally got to bed at a somewhat reasonable hour. I went to sleep hoping against hope that by morning it would no longer be raining…..

No such luck. I wake up to the morning news already talking about how it’s rained all night, and isn’t showing any signs of stopping. Awesome. Nothing to do be done for it, so I get ready, decked out in my Reds gear (and by “gear” I mean a ball-cap and some earrings, but it’s better than nothing), eat a little something before walking down to the stadium. It’s probably worth mentioning at this point that I was also suffering from a bit of a leg injury. And by leg injury, I mean that I had lost a significant amount of skin from my left leg playing softball. Note to self- always wear sliding pad. Whoops. I had only sustained this injury 5 days previously. And it was bad. Bad enough to warrant being constantly bandaged, and needing to be changed frequently. And it still really hurt. A lot. Our adventures the previous night had not really helped. So it a little less “walking” down to the stadium rather than “trying to not hobble” down to the stadium. Details, I know.

Right away, this race wasn’t going quite how I was expecting. Packet pickup was kinda hard to find. The website had not been very specific, just by the big wheel, so we ended up walking all the way around to find that they had set themselves up inside their dock area. To get out of the rain, which was still intermittently coming down. I can understand that, but some signs would have been  nice. I’m just sayin. They also made an announcement shortly before starting that the finish line would not actually be inside the stadium on the field because the warning track was totally flooded.  Doh.  Consolation prize: after the race you could go down into the reds dugout and hang out for a bit.

Photo-op while waiting for the weather to be more cooperative

About 5 minutes before the race, the wind picked up, and the rain started coming down harder, so most of us moved under whatever cover we could find while the race volunteers frantically tried to keep the start line from blowing away. After holding off the start for a few more minutes (to let the wind regain it’s composure), we were off. In the rain. Which didn’t stop for at least 3 miles. Awesome indeed.

Most of the course was right around the stadiums along the river, which means that I got to look at a lot of parking lots. That’s ok, because I could just focus on my running. My goal was to run as much as possible, trying to make it as close to a mile at a time as I could. I gauged this on the mile markers set up along the course. At mile 1, I slowed to a walk and caught my breath for 5 minutes, then back to running.  Rinse and repeat at mile 2.  The one thing the rain had going for it is I stayed nice and cool, and felt really good through most of the race. Shortly before mile 3, Hubby got some actions shots from the safety of cover.

Right about the halfway point, and it's still raining

Rinse and repeat at mile 3. I was still feeling good and keeping a decent pace, even with my bum leg. My only complaint was that I had yet to see a water station. The rain was nice, but not exactly a thirst quencher I finished my breather, and ramped back up on my way to mile 4. I was chugging along, trying to keep an eye on my time, and trying to keep an eye out for mile 4. Only it didn’t come. I finally wore out and had to start taking walking breaks. So now I’m alternating walking and running a little more frequently, and thinking to myself “Where the F- is mile 4?!? Seriously?” I keep going, thinking it’s got to be close, just around the next corner, one more street. Walk, run, walk, run. One more corner, and then I’m walking for as long as I feel like it. I make it to the next water station which is at the base of the Purple People Bridge on the Cincinnati side. I ask one of the volunteers if I’d missed the 4 mile marker somewhere along the line, and got some random reply along the lines of “no, I think it’s just up ahead on the bridge.” Ok, sure. So I keep going, only walking when I absolutely have to. Only, as I get to the other side of the bridge and realize that I’m only going over a few blocks in Newport, and then crossing back over the river to finish at the stadium.  And I realize that not only was there not a mile marker 4, I’m pretty sure I should have already passed mile marker 5 too.  Damn it. By this time, I’ve run a bit more than I had (vaguely) planned, and my leg was starting to hurt. The bandage had started to slip, and I was getting a little rub-action on my still tender wound. And I was way ahead of pace. I had told Hubby that I expected to finish in around 1:30- 1:45. With my leg, I didn’t think it was going to be any better than that. My knees were also starting to hurt. A lot. Knowing that the end was near kept me going. I got to the other bridge going back towards the stadium, and could see the finish line by this time, and just really wanted to be done. From where I was on the bridge, it looked like you hit the bottom of it, went around the corner, and there was the finish line. Whoo-hoo! Almost there!

Just kidding- you went down, around a corner, up a slight hill to the front of the stadium (the finish was in the back of the stadium along the river), and back down under a different bridge, and then to the finish line.  It made it a lot easier when I got closer to the stadium and there were lots of people, some cheering, most trying to stay under cover in case it decided to rain again.  I came around the corner, and once I was in sight of the finish line, I tried to pick up my pace to finish strong. As I sprinted towards the finish line, I happened to glance over, and recognized the back of Hubby also making his way to the finish line.  Apparently I made much better time than I thought.  So, no finishing picture. Boo on Hubby.

The after-party was really nice. Lots of food, beverages, bananas, lots of bananas, and a trip down into the dugout. That I instantly regretted as sharp pain went streaking through, not one, but both knees. Boo for tendinitis. After finally making down, cookies in hand, I decided that we were just going to hang out for a while.

Good call on not running on the field...

Once my knees felt up to it (and I was out of cookies and bananas), we ventured back up into the concourse that held the rest of the after-party, ate some more food, got some freebies from the race partners, and headed home.

All in all, it was a good race, the scenery wasn’t great, you see one parking lot, you’ve seen them all. The overall organization was ok, a little bit of a cluster at the beginning, but you could blame the weather for that. The after-party was one of the better ones, and I got to hang out at my favorite baseball teams diamond and support their cause.  And they had a pretty cute shirt.

Not too shabby for only my second race. Maybe I have a future at this after all…

Looking forward…

… To the Emerald City 1/4 Marathon coming up in just under 2 weeks!  The final testing ground to see if I’ve made how much progress I’ve made. It’s one of my last “big” races, only 2 more 10k’s after this, and then just a handful of smaller races to finish out the year. And that’s a lot more than I thought I would be doing this year!

This is the sister event to Cap City and, as you might have guessed based on the name, it is a celebration dressed in Green! Which is totally my color. 


The camera's green too

Almost everything I buy, I look for a green version first. I usually have to make a conscious decision to buy clothing and accessories in a color other than green. When my friends and family go places, and see something in green, they think of me. If I’m lucky, they pass the info on so I can go find it myself  :mrgreen:

As I’m looking into buying new gear, I’m looking for items that come in green. It’s almost a pre-requisite. I’m looking at new shoes to buy, and I really want to get the ones that you can customize. Custom green shoes?  Yes, please!

I’m a freak, I know. It’s cool….

With this event being setup and run by the same people that help put together Cap City, I am super excited to see the shirts and Finisher Medals for this race. I think I’m going to have a new set of favorites…

And if you see some crazy person decked out in all green out running, just smile and wave. It’s probably me.

Birthday 10K

For those of you that may not be familiar with it, 5am is damn early.

Real. Damn. Early.

Regardless of this fact, that is what time I got up on my birthday to go run a race. Start time for the Columbus 1/2 Marathon and 10k was 7am. The Hubby had decided that it would be nice to take the dogs with us, since there was a dog park near the starting area, so it was going to take just a little bit longer to get everything (and everyone) together.

By the time we gathered the dogs’ accessories (leashes, poo-bags, treats), gathered all my accessories (bib, chip-tag, camera, video camera, phone, water bottle), we headed out into the wee hours of the morning and arrived to Three Creeks Metro Park with about 20 minutes to spare. Hubby worked on getting the dogs together while I got my chip-tag on my shoe. That’s about as far as I got, as both dogs together are just a little more than Hubby can handle on his own first thing in the morning. So I grabbed Yeager, our older Great Dane (read: the well behaved one) and let Hubby try to get Annie under control. That lasted for all of 2 minutes before I offered to switch. He promptly accepted. The thing with Annie is that she is still young (only a year and a bit) and she is still learning her leash manners. The previous weekend walk helped a lot, and she remembered quite a bit of the lessons we went over (No, you will not yank my arm out of the socket). But fresh out of the car, with a ton of people walking past her, it was just too much for her to take. So she got to do a warmup jog with me out and back through the parking lot. She was still jazzed up, but paying a little more attention, and by this time, I was down to about 10 minutes until start, and had to walk across a large field yet. So I kept Annie, Hubby took Yeager, and we all made out way over to the start. We got as close as we could before there was just too many people around. I try to remember that not everyone likes dogs, and there may have been people that feel that bringing dogs to an event like this is inappropriate.

After getting them both settled down, I finally handed the leash over to Hubby so I could finally get by bib on, make sure my sansa is ready to go, get my phone shoved into my water bottle pouch. I left Hubby with the reminder that I would probably be finishing around 1:30, similar to the Redlegs Run, so not to get too distracted at the dog area because I would like to have some pictures from this one. You know, it being my birthday and all. I even brought the video camera and the tripod along, so all he would have to do is set it up, point it in the right direction, and keep the dogs from knocking it over. Right.

Trying to get my bib on before Annie gets distracted again

Did I mention that I also wore my favorite running shirt? You know, it being my birthday and all.

The only thing that starting that early has going for it is that the temperature was great. Not hot, nice breeze coming through. The placement of water stops was also great, one at around 1.5miles, and the other at the turnaround point for the 10k-ers. And since it was an out-and-back course, you passed each one twice. I walked through and drank all 4 times, and still totally drained my own bottle before I was done, but it wasn’t too bad.

There were also a number of other runners that would smile at me and wave or nod encouragement. It was early, and I was a little slow (mentally as well as physically). The first couple of times, I thought “wow, these people are really friendly, and so encouraging to someone who is obviously a newbie.”

And then I remembered that I was wearing my Awesome Shirt. Everybody loves the Awesome Shirt.

This shirt is so awesome, Chuck Norris is jealous of it

But back to the race: I was feeling really good. I only needed to periodically stop to catch my breath, mostly only stopped to get a drink of water (not really coordinated with that whole Drink-and-Keep-Running at the same time just yet), and my legs still felt fine, no cramps, tiring, nothing. I started thinking to myself, “There were still people around me that were continuing on to the 1/2. People that are still just as slow as me. Maybe I could run a 1/2 after all. Maybe I have built more endurance than I thought I had.”

These thoughts lasted a little past the 4 mile marker. Right about then my body chimed in with all the reasons that I decided to put off doing a 1/2 until I had trained better.

Calf muscles started cramping up. Tight painful strain started down my left inner thigh. The dehydration headache started kicking in. Breathing suddenly got harder. Side stitch reminding me to try to breathe deeper.

All the responses of a body reaching its limit of tolerance. And I still had a mile and a half to go. It was also around this time that the 1/2 Marathoners started passing me in large groups. There had been a couple that already flew past, but now they were coming by much more frequently. That didn’t help me feel any better about losing steam, and it took a lot of effort to remember that they were running their race, and I was desperately trying to run mine. On my birthday. (Really, who does that?)

I finally got to the final stretch, came over the last bridge (that whole Three Creeks thing), and headed towards the finish. Normally I will try to pick my pace up in the name of finishing strong. But I was already struggling so much, that I just tried to keep my pace as it was. I wouldn’t sprint in, but I would still be running. Since I was being (relatively) leisurely about it, I started looking around for Hubby and the kids. I spotted Yeager first (benefit of being a Great Dane-you get noticed. A lot), and then noticed that Annie was bouncing around like a kangaroo, and Hubby was bent over trying to grab her and facing away from me. Uh Oh. Looking like no finish picture again. I kept watching him as I got closer and closer to the finish line, and about 15 feet away from the arch, he spins around frantically looking for me, sees that I am about to finish, and is fighting to find the camera. That is still in the bag. Still in it’s case. Tangled in dog accessories. When I’m about 4 steps away, he throws his hands up in defeat. No finish pictures again.

Come to find out, Annie apparently managed to slip out of her collar just as Hubby had spotted me coming over the bridge and was trying to get the camera out. The camera search had to be abandoned to keep Annie from bolting into the crowd trying to make new friends.

My cheering, picture ruining section

All in all, it was a good run. I could have finished a bit stronger, but the fact that I was out there at all, at the ass-crack of dawn, running a 10k on my birthday, has to count for something.

All in all, the best birthday present I could probably give myself.

Except maybe wireless headphones…

Finally! Making progress the slow way

Last night I finally had a decent run. It wasn’t very fast, still hanging around that 15 minute/mile mark. But it felt better than the last few that I’ve done. And I think I know why.

I’m a pretty competitive person. Ask anybody who knows me. Somehow, even though I’ve never really run before, I feel that I should be able to train like I’m a professional. I can remember actually being athletic, and good at sports. It quickly becomes very discouraging when I can’t do what I think I should be able to do. It’s the same thing with strength training. I actually really like lifting weights, there’s just something very satisfying about the way I feel doing it, and being able to do it.  But I want to go right back to the weights and reps that I used to be able to do, and I inevitably get down on myself when I can’t. This leads to spiraling down into knowing that I’ll ultimately feel better if I put the time in, but getting discouraged every time I try to start again. It’s a vicious cycle, and it’s really hard to get out of.

Last week, my plan didn’t finish out the way I had planned. Most days went ok, I did get in 2 runs, a walk during lunch one day, but I only did a strength workout once. That’s disappointing for me. That’s the part that I think will benefit me the most. I get the muscle building, which makes me stronger, burns more calories, and ups my metabolism. And I just feel better when I do it. I’ve got a handful of dvds to choose from, but my favorites are Bob and Jillian’s. Not the actual Biggest Loser ones, but their own videos.  When I was trying to lose weight for my wedding, I went with Jillian. Even in dvd form, she is merciless. The video I used at that time “30 Day Shred” has 3 levels that you progress up. I did that work out almost everyday for 5-6 weeks and I never made to level 3.

I love Bob and Jillian from the Biggest Loser. They are my kind of crazy, and I just can’t get enough of them.

I’ve also tried doing workouts found in magazines. One of the better ones for me was one I got from Muscle and Fitness Hers. It’s a magazine specifically for body builder types, but still had a lot of good all around information. They were doing a weight loss competition and had a beginner’s workout that ramped up after a few weeks. That was a good workout, but like everything else, I derailed after a couple of weeks when I wasn’t where I thought I should have been.

Lately, I’ve been going with Bob. The video that I have from him is specifically strength training. It is not the high intensity interval training that Jillian mostly does. It is straight up lifting weights, but you are moving the entire time. Only a couple of water breaks, otherwise you are moving from one move right into another. I love it when I do it. Here’s the thing. This dvd has 2 levels, the beginner level and the “you’re going to cry blood” Big Boy level. I am hesitant to admit this out loud in case Bob somehow hears me, but … I’ve done the beginner level a few times now, and even though I am sweating quite a bit by the end, the next day I hardly feel like I’ve done a workout. This tells me that it’s time to move up to the serious level. he first level is 20 minutes long, the Big Boy version is an hour.

All of a sudden, 60 minutes worth of lifting weights sounds like an awful long time….

Really though, the actual hard part is not continuing to quit just because I can’t currently do what I used to be able to do. Knowing that I because I used to be able to do something really just means that I can do it again if I put in the effort.

When I truely need a proper ass-kicking...

When he says he isn't really the nice one, he means it





Or something like that.

Park Adventures

On Saturday the hubby and I went to Three Creeks Metro Park to scope out the course that I’ll be running next Sunday for the Columbus 1/2 Marathon. I’ll be running the 10k, and I wanted to see what kind of course it was. Was there much shade? Many hills? And I haven’t been having very good runs lately,so I figured I would just walk it. Some how I managed to talk the husband into going with me.

I don’t think he quite understood how long 6 miles can be. Or maybe I downplayed how long 6 miles can be. It could go either way.

Hubby wanted to get up and go early, wanted to be at the park by 8am, thinking it would take us around 2 hours to walk it, then we would be done by the hottest part of the day. I wanted to sleep in, as Saturday is my only day off.  I won. By the time we found the dog’s accessories, it was around noon by the time we got to the park.

It started off fairly promising, being a bit overcast with a nice breeze. The trail that goes through Three Creeks is part of the Alum Creek Trail, and it is a very nice smooth paved trail. It should be a nice run. At least I hope it will be.

Annie and the husband were not quite as impressed….

This Year So Far: Cap City 2011

I just realized that my blog is woe-fully lacking in the photo department. Allow me to correct this with some running recaps from this year so far.

Capital City started in early February for me.  My mom sent me an email asking if I wanted to team up for 10TV’s Commit to be Fit Challenge. I looked at the website, which is part of Capital City’s 1/2 Marathon event. Sounds good, let’s do it! It was a 10 week program, teams of 2-5 people trying to lose the biggest percentage of weigh Biggest Loser style. I am always optimistic, and for some reason think that a weight-loss competition will motivate me enough to do what I have been too lazy to do all this time. Never works, and I’ve tried a number of times. No dice.

Anyway, as I was looking over the website, I am looking at the Commit to be Fit 5k, the 1/4 marathon, and the 1/2 marathon. Starting in late February (which is when the initial weigh-in was, cause, you know, you don’t want to lose any weight before the competition actually starts, right?), that was 10 weeks to train for a race. Now, I was eye-balling the 1/4. When I’m on a roll, one of my methods for losing weight to try to get out and do 3 miles everyday. Run, walk, whatever, just get 3 miles in. So I think to myself “really, you’re doing a 5k, like, everyday, or at least most days. I bet I could the 1/4 marathon by then, easy.’ So I mention this to Mom, saying that I would be interested in trying out the 1/4, it doesn’t sound near as scary as the 1/2.  13.2 miles is a long frickin’ way to be running. But I know my track record for failure at losing weight and sticking to a program, so I decide that I’m going to wait and see how it goes.

Now, Mom is much better at the nutrition side of weight-loss than I am. I hold out that if I can just get to working out on a regular basis, I will be ok. That might have been true a few years ago when it was only 30-40 pounds to lose, but I can no longer make that claim and believe it. So, as one might expect, I did not do well. At all. Pretty much did not lose any weight at all. Does not gaining any more count?

Fast forward to Tuesday May 3rd. It’s evening, I’m home, playing on the computer, specifically on facebook. I’ve already thrown in the towel for the Commit to be Fit, knowing that I haven’t lost anything (sorry about that, Mom). However, I’d ‘liked’ the Commit to be Fit facebook page, and had been getting updates. So some post comes up talking about the Capital City 1/2 and 1/4 marathon, and how there is still time to register. So I go to the website, peruse around, looking at entry-fees, time allowed, etc. The race is on Saturday, only 3 days away.

Suddenly, I really wanted to do the 1/4 marathon. Just to see if I can. Just to prove to myself that I can. Damn it, last year I could run 3 miles in 30 minutes during my lunch hour at work. There’s no reason I shouldn’t be able to finish a 1/4 marathon, even if I haven’t exactly been working out very much (read: hardly at all). It’s not ideal, but I still thought I could do it. My biggest problem was that payday was still 3 days away, and I did not have quite enough funds to make this happen.

Enter my loving husband (read: sucker :D). He’s upstairs working in his office, and I come in and say ‘So….’ and launch into my plan and how I really want to do this race on Saturday, but because I’m registering this late, it’s a fair bit of money. Ever the practicalist, he asks some questions about whether I can really do it, why I really want to (the need to reclaim some self-value after coping out of the Commit to be Fit Challenge), and then finally, the logistics. He has zero interest in running (believe me, I’ve tried, I could really use a running partner), so he’s not going to run with me, plus he has to work at noon. I don’t really want to run by myself, but I’ll do it if I have to, and if that happens, Hubby will go with me to support me, but we have to make sure we’re headed home in enough time to get him to work. The other option is to see if Mom will go with me, because she will more likely be willing to run/walk with me.

The phone call to Mom went something like this:

Me: Hey, Mom, how’s it going?

Mom: Fine. What’s up?

Me: Well, I’d been thinking about doing it, and really meant to, but time kinda snuck up on me, and there’s a race this saturday that I want to do, and wanted to see if you’d like to do it with me.

Mom: Hmm, what kind of race? Like a 5k?

Me: Ummm, it’s the Capital City 1/4 marathon…

Mom: What? A marathon? Really? Can’t we just do the 5k?

Me: No, not a marathon. A quarter marathon. And I don’t want to do the 5k, I do those all the time, I want to do the quarter.

Mom: Well, how long is a quarter marathon?

Me: It’s like 6-point-something, so like doing two 5k’s. Really, it should be no problem, we walked almost 8 miles last weekend at the park! (That’s a whole different story…)

Mom: (considering silence) I suppose that’s true. (more contemplative silence) You’re sure you don’t want to do the 5K instead?

Me: Nope, doing the quarter. I’m doing it either way, I just wanted to see if you wanted to do it with me.

Mom: Alright, I’ll do it with you. We should probably go walk tomorrow then.

Me: Thanks! Yea, we should.

So Mom agreed to run/walk with me, Husband agreed to the entry fee, and 3 days later we (mostly) walked/ran (some of) the Capital City 1/4 Marathon!

Me and Mom

Mom and I at the start line with 11,000 of our newest friends

More important than anything else- It was so much fun! It was a great course, winding through and around downtown Columbus. The volunteers that were out there were so encouraging, and the bands helped us keep our motivation too! A great food spread at the end, and a finisher’s medal were all very nice too! Probably the most entertaining part of the race were the shout-outs to MIT we got.  You can see in the photo above that Mom is wearing a MIT shirt. MIT (Marathoner In Training) is a racing group here in Columbus that helps people train for races and develop their running ability. There was an Expo leading up to Cap City (which you had to go to for your packet pick-up) and lots of vendors, and one of them (I don’t remember who it was, Fleet Feet maybe?) had these training shirts, so Mom bought us each one.  Well, the Capital City shirts were sized just a little smaller than we thought they were going to be, so Mom wore her MIT shirt instead. All throughout the race, I would hear people calling out ‘yay, go MIT!’, and it took awhile to figure out that they were yelling at/to us because of that shirt! I thought to myself ‘How nice, that they would be cheering on people that they don’t even know, that must be a dedicated group of people!’ Since then, I have looked into their program, and it sounds like it is just the sort of thing that I need to help me build my consistency up. I’ve also been looking into Fleet Feet Columbus‘ Race Club. A group of like-minded people, a network of other runners that can keep me going, and keep me motivated, and keep me accountable. Knowing that people may be expecting me to be there makes it more likely that I’ll show up.

Post Race with Medals and Beverages in hand!

It was a really great experience overall, and helped to concrete my decision to really give running a fair shot. It was my first race, but so far, has still been the best organized race. Being around all the other runners, the excitement in the air, the race being so well organized, all of it came together to just be a truely rewarding experience. I was so glad that I made that last minute decision to run in this race. I will always remember this first race as the one that got me started, and something that I was able to do with my mom. She may not enjoy the idea of running quite as much as I do, but she really enjoyed getting out and participating too. I’m glad she went with me. Thanks Mom!