So I left off last time when I had just started running. eventually I made it up to a 5 K. I wasn't breaking any speed records but I could finish 3.1 miles, which was huge for me. I did a couple local 5K races and it was fun. I happened to see ads for the Philly Marathon. There was the half marathon and full marathon. Clearly I was in no shape for a half or full marathon plus in my head anyone who ran over a few miles was insane. What was wrong with those people?!?! I had heard about toenails falling off, peeing/pooping pants, tearing ligaments, stress fractures, why would anyone do that to themselves??? Anyway I saw they had an 8K that weekend which I eventually figured out was 4.98 miles. So I signed up. I'm not sure if I actually ran 5 miles before the day of the race or not, if I did it was only once or twice. Anyway I did better than I thought I would although I thought I might die after. I was really proud of myself and being down in the city in that atmosphere changed something in me. I wanted more, I wanted to run further, do more races and do bigger races. However there was one problem. During those 4-5 months I had started running leading up to the 8K, I was developing a serious shin splint on my left leg. It was bad, my husband couldn't even lightly touch my shin without me jumping. I'm sure it was a stress fracture. Being a physical therapist I of course know the treatment for a stress fracture. So I made a deal with myself to not run until Jan 1st 2011 which was about 6 or so weeks from when I ran the 8K. I made myself a rehab program for my shin and stuck to it. During my rehab I had been playing around on google looking up races. I knew that summer I would be going to Bosnia and Croatia to visit my husband's family and I thought it would be really cool to find a race to do while I was there. There wasn't a whole lot of races going on but one popped up that caught my interest it was called The Plitvice Marathon in Croatia. I knew exactly where this was in a beautiful national park that I had visited many times when over there. They were advertising a 10 miler and marathon that apparently they had been having for 25 years, who knew?!?! I thought back to the expo for the philly marathon and the whole setup, environment that weekend for the races and just decided, I'm going to run this marathon. At first I was even afraid to tell my husband because I know it was kind of ridiculous. A girl who hated running and literally never ran a mile until about 5 months prior to this and currently was not running due to shin splint/stress fracture.....
My new Nike+ watch from Santa!
16 miles in the snow storm, DONE!
So this was week 2 of 50K training and as it happens it was Christmas!!! As you will learn, I am someone who takes my training schedule seriously. I am very flexible regarding which days I run however I must unless something tragic/drastic occurs that weeks get in all my runs. So this week was challenging due to the holidays. If it was only that it was a holiday week, no problem but working in a hospital means there are no days off. I had to work Sunday (dec 23rd), Monday Christmas Eve, had off Christmas and then worked the 26th and 27th. I was able to get my run in on Sunday no problem after work as it was only a 5miler but Monday and Tuesday were definite no go's. Way too much going on in those two days including Christmas brunch at my house. So Wed after work I did 7 miles on the treadmill, I got up at 5 AM Thursday to do 5 miles on the treadmill since I was going out after work with my co-workers followed by my Croatian class at 830 that night then I did 7 miles Friday around 5:30 in the dark. I love running at night with my headlamp especially right now with all the Christmas lights out, really awesome! Then came yesterday morning (Saturday). So they were forecasting snow but around 10ish when I was getting ready to go out it was only a flurry or two so no big deal. Secretly I was a little disappointed that it wasn't more when I was getting ready. I love getting out there and tackling all different elements, I mean why do I have all the gear if I'm never going to use it?? Anyway I dressed accordingly in case it did snow while I was running. I also got to use my hydration pack for the first time (thanks Santa!) oh and I forgot to mention my new Nike+ GPS watch from Santa!!! Also my husband purchased Tailwind Nutrition which is a powder we mixed into the water in my hydration pack. I still brought gels just in case however 16 miles and I didn't need a single gel! it was awesome and taste wasn't bad either. So anyway about 2 miles in it started snowing. For about another mile it was light and then BAM it started snowing pretty heavy. At this point I had made it to the trail so it was ok that visibility wasn't the best. By the time I turned around at 8 miles to head back there was a good 1.5-2inches covering the trail. The second half was seriously challenging trudging through the snow and then when I made it back to the road, it was very slick with slush. By the time I got home, I was covered with snow and soaked to the bone but I had a blast running in the storm. It was so pretty and peaceful. I'm pretty sore today from the 16 miler in the snow but it was a great workout and definitely hope for another snow run this winter!!