August 1, 2020:
Week five is complete! I had a great three mile run today! I wanted to try and break my fastest 5K time, since getting my Garmin watch in April, and I succeeded! Clearly I am proud of myself.
I have not run any hills/bridges since the EPCOT bridge at the Princess half marathon. I was surprised at how good it felt to run elevation! Usually running hills is terrible. I am guessing that the Disney playlist I was listening to helped. I had never listened to Disney music while running before. Thank you to all the Disney runners in the Run Dopey Facebook group for the idea! It was super motivational! I even had a little “Disney Magical Moment” while running!
When I was coming back over the bridge, Pandora was playing “The Circle of Life”. Just as I reached the top of the bridge, with the sun coming up over the horizon, the song ended. It was so breathtaking that I would’ve stopped to take a picture of it if I wasn’t trying to PR! (runner problems) It really made me feel like I was running for a purpose bigger than for six medals and shirts. It gave me a sense of belonging at that moment and to what I was doing; as if running is what I am supposed to be doing right now. With everything going on, Kyle and I have had to put a lot of plans for travel and other things on hold. This moment gave me that calming sense and comfort to know changing directions a little bit is okay.
I am really happy I can share this moment with all of you! Training is hard and this kind of training takes sacrifice and planning. It takes time away from other workouts, friends, and family. It is also something that can be hard for others to understand that may not love Disney or running like this. I hope my story will help to keep everyone motivated. I also hope you all get to experience something like this when you are training!
August 9, 2020:
Kyle and I have finished week six of training. Both of my 45 minutes runs were not as great as I was hoping for. I was sore and not able to run as much mileage as I had previously been doing (previously 4.75 miles down to 4.35 and 4.50 this week). This did not stop me as I spent all week thinking ahead to Saturday.
Saturday was the longest run in the program to date and the longest run I had done in about 4-6 weeks. I was excited and ready to try for another PR in my 10K during my seven mile run. I thought about the course I wanted to run and what time I wanted to start my run all week. Unfortunately, my run did not go as planned.
I originally planned to be done running in about 70-80 minutes. My goal was to break one hour in my 10K as my current race record is 56 minutes. Although I PR’d my training 10K time by about 12 seconds, I am still at 63 minutes. With all things considered, I am fairly happy with this time.
On my run, I had to stop at 4.5 miles to walk a half mile due to nausea. I thought it was all the water I drank before running. After walking a half mile at balloon lady pace, I returned to a slower run. I was able to keep this up until I hit the 6.4 mile mark. At that point I felt my right arm start to get chills. It wasn’t until I had goosebumps everywhere that I got worried. I stopped running immediately and started to walk again. I walked that last 0.6 miles before coming inside without any other issues.
For those that do not know, I was suffering from heat exhaustion. If you look on the CDC website they have a graphic of “Heat Related Illnesses” and heat exhaustion is right before heat stroke. Heat stroke is a medical emergency. As a medical professional, it was a little difficult to believe I put myself in this situation. I had started my run before the sun had come up, ran in the shade as much as possible, and brought water to hydrate.
Heat exhaustion is very serious and unfortunately many of the symptoms are not unusual to experience when out in the heat. As a runner I have had most of these symptoms: heavy sweating, nausea, muscle cramps, tiredness, headache.
Thankfully, I recovered quickly without complications. I plan on running earlier and hydrating even more while running. Always be sure to listen to your body when working out. I have included some tips below, for all my runners, for training in the heat!
Running in the Heat Tips:
- Run early or run late. Try to run when the sun is not out or just beginning to rise or set to avoid as much direct heat as possible.
- Run with water. Even on short runs, having water is critical to have in case you need it.
- Plan your route with as much shade as possible. If you run outdoors a lot, you know which side of the street has shade at what times.
- Pick appropriate attire. Wearing dark colored items will attract more heat.
- Slow your pace. The hotter it is, the slower you should run. Running your fastest pace will be even more strenuous on you in the heat.
- Have a support system. Always make sure people know where you are planning to run and for how long. Take your cell phone. This way people know where you planned on running if you don’t return on time and you can call for help if you need it.
- Have a plan B. We are lucky that Kyle works at the university in town and we often run there. He often times carries his ID in case we need to get into a building due to lightning or if we get too hot.
August 16, 2020:
Week seven is over and I am happy to see it go!
After last Saturday, I was nervous to return to running. Instead of running Tuesday morning, I waited until the afternoon. I wanted to be well hydrated before hitting the treadmill. I also decided to run my three mile run on Tuesday to ease in. My three miles went perfectly! This helped encourage me to continue to push forward through the second two runs of the week.
Both Thursday and Saturday went well too! Unfortunately the humidity was way too high on Saturday to run outdoors. I was also still nervous after last week. To be honest, the increased humidity causing an indoor run did not upset me. I hate running in the humidity. It makes it extremely hard to breath and makes me start sweating the second I step outside. Hopefully the humidity will start to drop soon!
August 23, 2020:
I RAN 9 MILES STRAIGHT THIS WEEK! Week eight did not start out how I had hoped but ended better than I planned!
Kyle and I spent a lot of time cleaning and landscaping our yard last weekend. This left me with very sore hamstrings. I had to trade my Tuesday run for a Tuesday bike. It forced me to push myself harder on Thursday BUT I also accomplished 5 miles in 46 minutes! I also decided to change my 45 minute run to a 5 miles run. I will add more mileage if I get fast enough to do so but for now this will help motivate me more!
In addition to some mild muscle issues, I also struggled getting up early to work out! I only got up on time twice this week. I woke up a whole hour later than anticipated on Saturday. With my recent issue with heat exhaustion, I was extremely nervous to run outdoors. Thankfully I lucked out with an overcast morning, keeping the sun from beating down and the temperature from rising. I also made sure to take a sip of water every other mile for hydration.
I am still in shock I made it through the whole run without stopping! The longest training run I have ever completed prior to this was 7 miles when training for Princess! I am excited to see how the rest of training will go after making it over this hump!
August 29, 2020:
After a great week eight, week nine was filled with a lack of motivation. I was not in the mood to run and ended up doing only one 45 minute run and two 3 mile runs. This training program is the longest I have ever done. It is also the fastest pick-up in mileage I have done. In other Jeff Galloway plans, the first several weeks only have you increasing mileage by a half mile or mile. I am currently increasing by two miles every other week.
I know that every runner has ups and downs in training but I did not think it would hit this early on! Unfortunately, I do not have any tips or tricks at this time to get out of the slump. I can only put one foot in front of the other.
The humidity was off the charts this week making it difficult to run. On Tuesday, I could feel the heat going into the gym. Thursday morning it was cooler outside than in the gym! With my lack of motivation and the heat, I postponed my morning run on Thursday until later in the morning. Today I just woke up too late to do a whole 45 minutes honestly. I was not motivated to do it but it was my oversleeping that really stopped me from completing my run. I am happy with myself for the completion of both runs though. It would’ve been easy to give up on running all week but I did not! I pushed through and got 15 miles in this week. Hopefully, this coming week will be easier and my lack of motivation will dissipate so I can complete my 11 miles without any issues!