Thursday, February 14, 2013

Week Five and Six RECAP! :)

I LOVE SPOTIFY!

For those of you who don't know, Spotify is an app for your phone or computer that lets you listen to any song in their library.  The computer version is free, the smartphone app costs $10/mo.  I gave it a try.  I found all the songs from my old running playlists, and then some... then I looked up other songs in my perfect pace range... then I looked up songs I like that are high energy... Well, you see where this is going.  I have 2 hours of running music on my spotify running mix, and it's awesome! 

In week five I got my COMPRESSION SOCKS!  I got a pair of Zoot compression socks from Fleet Feet Sports in Lincoln Square.  This running store is great.  Friendly, helpful, and accepting of your level!  I will definitely be returning!

Also, my subzero running skirt arrived from RunningSkirts.com!  It is so comfortable and the coolest part of it is that I don't notice being "hot" or "cold" when I'm out in the elements.  It's just perfect.  And it's cute! 

As far as the running goes:

I'm not going to lie.  It's hard.  Each run is a little bit touher than the last one.  I know that I'm getting better, but I am pushing myself on almost every run.  Week five was by far the best and funnest running I have done so far.  I found myself SMILING while I was on the run.  I hope to get back to this again when it gets a little bit easier in the training... I'm certain that this was the week where I caught up with myself.  Where I was running the optimal amount, not pushing the limits. 

Week Six was a limit pushing week.  For two of my training runs I was in Chapel Valley in Rapid City, SD.  HILLS!!  Argh!  I'm usually running on the Chicago lakefront, and it is flat as a pancake!  These small inclines made these two training runs the toughest running I have ever done.  I tried to keep my pace steady, so even on the downhills I was working.


This is a beautiful  (but challenging)  place to run: Canyon Lake Park in Rapid City, SD.

(Another development:  I run in the city.  Chicago is a big city, and I am aware that not everyone has stellar intentions.  Sometimes I have to run after work, and it gets dark early.  I decided to start running with Mace.  I cannot tell you how much safer I feel.  It's not a replacement for being aware of your surroundings, but I know that I have a strategy if I get attached by a dog, or harrassed by a person.  It's on a hand strap so it can't be knocked out of my hand, and I don't have to fumble for it.  It's right there.  This might seem extreme, but it feels better to have a plan for if something happens.)

Summary:  It's still tough, and I think I've realized that running isn't going to get "easy".  I'll get more fit, but what I'm training for is not an easy thing to do.  There are plenty of distance athletes who could run 13.1 every day of the week, but for most people it's a challenge.  It's certainly challenging for me, and I have realized that though I'll be prepared, it probably won't be a breeze to run the half marathon.

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