Chasing the Impossible

What is your Impossible? Or do you even believe there are impossible feats?

Some people believe there are certain things in life which are IMPOSSIBLE. I have to disagree.

I think most things are difficult. Success does not come easy.

 If you put in the work. Your deepest dreams are obtainable. Keep your mind focused and do not give up.  It is up to you and you alone to decide how hard you are willing to work to make it all Possible.

This past week, Seth was in Colorado attending the Adams State Cross Country camp.  He hopped on a plane to take him to Alamosa, Colorado.2013072195152419

 It is time for some decent altitude training! A few weeks ago, at the other camp, he reached altitude topping out around 5,000 ft. This week he exceeded 7,500 ft. In fact on one run he ran at over 11,000 ft. Now that will get you fit, or really tired. 🙂 He handled the altitude very well. Running some amazing runs.  One day at camp the runners had the chance to run mile repeats. They did 4 with approximately 2 minutes rest.  Seth came through the last repeat in 4:50. I must say he is getting very fit and ready to accomplish great things this fall!

1374518722122

Other updates in regards to Seth, not only has he been going to running camp he has also been throwing in fun runs here and there to keep things more exciting this year. We decided to go about training a little differently. Summer running becomes long and boring pretty fast. Especially if most of your runs are by yourself. Keeping motivated it KEY to the futures successes. A fun run, here and there is not going to do any harm. He is still keeping 99% of his runs easy base miles. Summer is long and HOT. The goal is to keep Seth excited for running. Keeping it fun and enjoyable. There will come a day or a few days, where training will be very hard, these days may make us question why it is we put ourselves through this pain.  Anyways, back to the FUN RUNS!!! Seth ran the Kirksville Twilight 5k on July 18th. He won by over a minute in a time of 16:57.  From what I heard, the heat was unbearable for the race, topping out around 97 degrees with some massive humidity. Yesterday he also ran in another fun run in Memphis, MO, clocking a 17:20 after spending all week at camp. Today he gets to rest and recuperate from this busy running schedule.

2013072295110328

On another note, I have also been doing some fun runs this summer. I am not able to train much due to all of my past injuries but I run when I can. For the past few weeks, I have been going to Maximum Mobility, with Dr. Ball, who practices on elite and professional runners. He has helped runners like Ryan Hall, Lauren Fleshman, and the list is never ending.  I have struggled with running since I was injured in 2006. After seeing Dr. Ball, for the past few weeks, I have noticed so much difference. Although recently I have had a little hiccup after I running a road race on the 13th of July, straining my left Calf. However, I am taking appropriate action to get it healthy again as quickly as possible.

229

Back on July 13th. My mom came down to Arizona to visit me. Her and I went to run in the Arizona Road Racers Summer Series #4. I was super excited to have my Mom there to watch me run. ( James was not able to attend this run, he is on his OB/GYN rotation and had work to do. ) My mom has not seen me race or really even run in 7 years, so it was such a treat to have her there. I am not in  racing shape by any means. But like I said earlier, sometimes, it is just fun to go run hard with a bunch of runners. It makes the everyday more flavorful!

233

Can you see me in the Purple? I was wearing new running clothes. I think it helped me to run faster. The Nike compression shorts were a present courtesy of Maria! (Thanks Girl!!) and the top is from Oiselle, super comfortable I might add. I was the 2nd overall female finishing in a time of 18:21.

239

After the race, Mom and I said our goodbyes, She had to head back to Texas. It was such a great day racing again with my mom. Brings back great memories and hopefully more memories will be coming soon!

Don’t forget to Chase after YOUR IMPOSSIBLE!!!!

Camp is coming to an end.

Camp is finally coming to an end. Both Seth and Maria have been sending me photos of all the fun they have been having throughout the week. I wont go into much detail, just share with you all some of their photos and memories.

2013071195101243

One day all of the runners at camp had a opportunity to have Question and Answer sessions with some professional runner.

2013071095185417

This is the running path where Seth did one of his long runs this week.

2013071195110855

Seth is in the white shirt on the end, pictured with a professional runner and a fellow high school runner.

2013071195111558

More professional runners

2013071195112048

They just keep coming…. more professional runner. I have said it before and will say it again. Meeting professional runners is any runners dream in my opinion. Now that I live in Arizona, I have met so many former professional runner, who are still racing very well. I have been lucky enough yo run with them this past week, and I also feel like I am at camp just like Seth and Maria.

2013071195130344

Unfortunate not all of the professional runners are able to attend camp and speak with the high school athletes. However, the runners do have the opportunity to Skype some of the top distance runners. Pictured above is Matt Centrowitz, who won a bronze medal in the 1500 meter at the 2011 World Championships. Recent accomplishments my Centrowitz have been his 4th place finish at the 2012 Olympic games and a First place finish at the 5th Avenue mile where he beat renowned distance phenom, Bernard Lagat.

2013070995131225

Also another mid- distance stand out, Jenny Simpson, was able to Skype with the runner. The advice she gave to all of them was how important it is to eat healthy and take very good care of their bodies. Currently She holds the American Record in the Steeple Chase and won the Gold Medal at the 2011 World Championships in the 1500 meter. Jenny had competed in both the 2008 and 2012 Olympic games. Another fun fact is when Jenny and I were in High school we both races at the Golden South Classic in Orlando Florida. However, I can not remember if I raced her in 2004 or 2005. I think it was 2005. I remember from that race there was a lightening storm off in the distance and they had to keep postponing the race every 30 minutes. Finally we were able to start the race. We ran 3000 meters, Jenny finished first with a time of 10:02 and I was 2nd, coming in with a time of 10:12. It was a great experience. I was terrified of getting struck by lightening so I ran as fast as I could to get that race over with. As soon as our race was finished they ended up canceling the rest of the races for the day.  Anyways, I am so glad Maria and Seth were able to chat with one of Americas best female distance runners.

IMG_2215

These next few photos were sent to me from Maria and Ellen Weimer.

IMG_2213

The Salisbury Cross Country team is pictured here with Coach Ramsey, who is the camp director and coach of the Brocow Blazers.

IMG_2181

Maria and Ellen, I am not sure if this was taken before or after one of their runs! 🙂

IMG_2174

What can I say…. Girls being Girls!! Super tough and ready to take on the trails!!!

2013070895174444

These last few photos are of Maria and Seth with Matt Elliott, who is to this day one of the most motivational runners out there. He recently placed 4th at the USATF Championships in Des Monies this past June. One thing that is so special about him is not only is he a full time teacher, but back in high school, he really was not anyone special. He was the typical male distance runner, only running in the 4:40’s for the mile. Today the top girls in the states usually clock in around 4:40-4:50. He stuck with running all throughout high school and college and had made up so much ground. He now is competing against the best distance runners in the nation and has exceeded probably everyone else’s expectations expect for his own. Runner’s World, has a really nice article about him that you can read here. And this interview with flotrack is by far one of my favorite interviews of all time. Even I cried watching it the first time!

IMG_2148

They have just today left of camp, then all runners will be headed home for the remainder of summer training.  Seth will be attending another running camp in Colorado in a few weeks at Adam’s State University, so more photos and updates from that camp are sure to be posted in the near future.

Overall this camp has been a blessing, both runners have talked to me and emphasized how much they have learned and how motivated they are to keep running!

It is starting to feel like Cross Country Camp

First I want to start off with the Independence 5k which Maria ran this past Thursday. The course was a tad too long. Her overall time was 21:54, however, if you factor in the time difference due to the extra length she ran her time would have been really close to a 21:04. She is steadily improving her times and has not even ran one workout. The goal with Maria is to work on her cardiovascular strength. I just want her running or cross training. Doing anything and everything to get her heart and lungs strong. The picture below is of her and her teammates from high school. She is the one in the turquoise tank top bib number 1375. Her sister, Ellen, is in the Yellow. Ellen also ran well!!

maria july 5kMoving on, I have mentioned earlier how Maria’s cross country team and Seth are attending cross country camp this week. I am so excited for them. One of the best parts of running camp is the change of environment. It gets rough at times running the same routes and paths everyday, especially during the summer. This is because in the summer we tend to run miles, and lots of them.  Not only will it be a change of scenery, but also elevation. Northeast Missouri sits at about 980 feet of elevation. Pueblo Colorado is over 4,600 feet. Their lungs may feel a little bit of burning after their first run tonight.

2013070795115650 2013070795151628

The Drive from Missouri to Colorado is not the most exciting. (photos, courtesy of Seth) Most of the drive is through good ole Kansas. Lots of flat lands where you can see for miles and miles for roughly 12 hours. Luckily all runners made it safely to the camp and were thrilled to get out of Kansas.

 

This morning I woke up to a text from Seth, he said, “Matt Elliot is here, and I just saw him running on the treadmill. I feel like I saw a celebrity.” The next best thing besides the change of venue when it comes to cross country camp is the people you meet. The camp counselors are usually runner celebrities. Matt Elliot and Shalane Flanagan are the normal persons Matt Damon and Jennifer Aniston.  It really doesn’t get much better than this when it comes to running camp. The endorphin’s we get from seeing runners like these in person are enough to keep us motivated for several weeks. If only they knew the real impact they have on young runners.

Most running camps are not just about running, they are also about teaching us how to be more well rounded runners. Teaching us tools to use to help us develop into the best runners we can be. Today the kids were taught all about heart rate monitors and how they can be very useful in training. There is a science to being a top notch runner, as well as an art in my opinion. But I wont get started babbling on about that.  Anyways, back to camp…. Next on the agenda was some aqua jogging. If you have access to a pool with a deep end I strongly advice every runner to try aqua jogging at least once. Injuries are inevitable as a runner and knowing a skill such as this will take the injured runner along way. Also to avoid injury aqua jogging can be added to ones training for their second run to keep their legs from pounding on the pavement. If you are highly prone to developing stress fractures aqua jogging should be your best friend.

2013070895132810

 

The runners are headed out for their first run today. I talked to Maria and she is excited to try running with a heart rate monitor. It will be a new experience for her. As well as running at altitude.

Seth has been here before, but you can never learn or experience too much. He is having a blast.I mean, come on, he did see a celebrity 🙂

Stay tuned for more Camp updates!!

 

 

 

 

 

Big week ahead

This week is going to be a busy one. First off Seth and Maria are headed up to Pueblo Colorado to run at the Brocaw Blazers Cross Country camp. I am so excited for them. Seth attended this camp last year and loved it. Running camps are one of my favorite events to attend. Not only are you able to run and train with many wonderful runners, but they help give you a sense of  perspective which helps motivate you to get through the last half of summer training.  This will be Maria’s first time attending a running camp. i expect to hear great things from her experience. I have instructed both runners to take lots of pictures and give me a summary of how the week went. So expect a post in regards to camp in the near future.

As for myself, I have added some pictures from the race this past week.

 Here I am cruising in towards the finish line. After having a few days to reflect on the race, I would do a few things differently. First of all, when it comes to the finish I wish I would have fought a little harder, based on the picture above, I don’t really look like I was putting in enough effort for a finish. I am trying to get back into my old competitive nature. After taking nearly a 7 year hiatus from really running and competing. This competition thing is going to take some practice.  Mental strength is highly important in being a successful runner and competitor. It is one thing I use to be wonderful at, now I need practice.

Yeah JAMES!!! He is working hard. I am so proud of him for running this race. I am pretty confident in saying that the farthest he has ran in the past month is one mile. So to go out in Arizona heat and attempt 4 miles was quite a feat. He is planning on running another road race with me on the 13th, Our one year anniversary!! 

The week ahead for me is to run a few days this week, with some hiking and cross training. I will be headed into Endurance Rehab for a running gait analysis on Wednesday. I am super excited about this. I have had a really rough time getting back into running since being diagnosed with Celiac in March of 2012.  I have ran more this past year than I have since 2006, but with the goals I have set for myself I need to make sure I am doing everything I can to stay healthy and on track to reach all of my goals. This analysis will help to determine my weaknesses. I have added tons of strength training and various exercises into my routine over the past 2 years in order to get stronger to stay injury free. However, having someone who is trained to analyze running form will be very crucial in my progress as a runner. We can not be afraid to face our weaknesses. I have always wanted to have an analysis done, but have always been a little nervous to confront my flaws.  I talk to Maria and Seth so much about facing your fears and believing in their ability. I have to do the same If I want to coach them well. It is time to take appropriate action to train myself well.

As for the end of the week, James and I will be running in another road race, this time it is just a regular 5k. This race is on our one year wedding anniversary. In my opinion, what is a better way to celebrate our marriage than to run a race!! 🙂

Questions:

Has anyone ever had a running gait analysis done before?

Four on the Fourth

To start out the day, I woke up at 4:30 in order to head in time to make the 6:30 race time. James usually takes longer to wake up and get moving in the morning. For me, when it is race day, I pop out of bed so fast. I get so excited to race, I am surprised I don’t sleep in my running outfits before races :). After I woke up, first I made James his coffee, this way he would move a little faster and get out of the house on time and I ate Lara bars new ALT bar. The Lemon pound cake flavor is my favorite so far.

larabar_alt_lemon_pound_cake1.jpg

Since we are new to the area I wanted to have amble time to travel to Peoria, AZ.  Google maps said it would take about 40 minutes from our apartment. I found out last minute about this race and would need to sign up when we arrived, as well as get in a little warm up jog before the gun goes off. This race was a totally different league compared to the races James and I have participated in over the past 2 years.  Most of the races in Kirksville would have about 50-100 runners. In this race, there were over 1200 runners and walkers signed up, from what I heard on an overhead speaker. I think James was amazed with the event. People were everywhere. watching, running, walking, you name it. It was definitely a great experience for James to see.

The race was started in waves every 10 seconds. The first group was for those wanting to run the 4 mile loop at roughly a 6 minute pace or faster. Each wave went up from there, 7 minute pace, 8 minute pace, and so on. I jumped up with the first wave. My goal was to hit 6 minute pace for all 4 miles. I have been having a little pain in my right leg for the past few weeks, therefore my training has decreased from 40 miles per week to 20. I have been doing lots of elliptical workouts, but it is not the same as running. Also with traveling for the past week, I was unable to run much or exercise for that matter. To be honest 6 minute pace I thought would be rough. I am in a new area, I am racing in 90+ degree weather and the atmosphere is just a little bit different.  I noticed when the gun went off there was one younger girl who took off, I checked my GPS and it said I was running 5:15 pace. UH.. OH… I better slow down. I tried really hard to be very conservative the first mile and take it one mile at a time. This one no ordinary 5k, it was a 4 mile race!! I hit mile 1 at 6:00. Perfect!! Mile 2 was 6:02, Once again not too bad. Then mile 3 hit. This is where we turned around. There was no longer a breeze just heat beating down on my head. I had poured water on my head when I ran past the water station around 2.25 miles. But this is Arizona and the water I poured on top of me dried pretty quickly. I slowed down to a 6:11 for my 3rd mile. I tried to refocus and gather myself together. I had some negative thoughts creep in my head because my head felt so hot. I have not run in weather like this since I was in college, which was 6 years ago. I ran some outside while in Missouri, but I did most of my runs on the treadmill because there always seemed to be thunderstorms and snow. 😉 I am not really sure what my last mile was but it had to have been around 6:07, since I crossed the finish line in 24:24, which is a 6:06 pace. Just 6 seconds off my goal. I am proud and I ended up placing 2nd over all for the female and 44th out of 900+runners. The top women finished in 24:20. Next time I will get the gold!!! James also ran very well. He said he had never felt that hot before. He finished in 34:14 which is about an 8:33 average per mile. His goal was to hit 32 minutes. He was pretty close given the weather was a major change for the both of us.

IMG_4538

After the race we both cooled off for a while and went to Cantina Laredo for lunch. It was really good. They served us 2 different types of salsa. One was more traditional and the other was warm and spicy. The menu was well-marked for all the gluten-free options. I picked the Tacos de Pollo. They were so good. I would order these again. The food was very fresh and light. I loved it.

photo (31)

James picked the Enchilada de Espinaca, I could not try it since it was not GF, but it looked amazing and He enjoyed it.

photo (32)

We ended out 4th of July at Aloha Yogurt for some desert. The off to bed. We missed out on fireworks, I think we were both pretty exhausted from the sun.

photo (30)

 

Last day in Missouri… Run a 5k

For my last full day in Missouri, Seth and I headed down to Macon to participate in a local 5k, Child’s Hunger Ends Here.  Since it was my last day what better way to say goodbye to the area than to run in one last 5k. It was a great day, Hot and Humid like usual, but fun to actually race with Seth. Usually, I am the one watching him race from the stands or sidelines.

When the gun went of Seth bolted on out leading the pack a few other guys followed not knowing of Seth’s super power speed!! About 1/2 mile into the race it was just Seth and me leading the pack. Seth was about 5 seconds in front of me at this point. The gap between Seth and I grew. He is coming off of a double win at State and has more speed than I have at this point. I would have loved to be right up next to him, maybe next time :).

The first mile I came through around 5:59. Mile 2 on the other hand was not an easy feat. There were 2 hills. One of the hills was not too bad but then you come around this corner and there it is… One of the largest hills I have ever ran up, in a race at least. I have ran this course before so I was looking forward to this hill. By the time I got to the top of the hill, my pace had slowed down tremendously. You would think there would be a down hill on the other side, but there is not. So, you just have to dig deep and keep running. Then there was the last mile, which was not marked well. I even stopped at one point trying to find the right way to go. The only down fall to small town road races is that the courses are usually not marked well and there is no lead vehicle or bike directing the pack. At this point we were weaving in and out of the neighborhood, so I could no longer see Seth. I eventually figured out the course, and finished the 3.12 race in 18:47. I was hopping for a time about 30 seconds faster. But I will blame it on the hill and getting lost. 😉 !! Seth completed his race in 17:47. We were just 1 minute apart, Not too bad!!  Overall Seth and I captured the gold in for overall male and female winners. We received metals and neat little trophies.

2013-06-229508.16.16

Seth and I immediately after we crossed the finish line!

2013-06-229509.02.19

Overall Finishers with our awards!

2013-06-229508.59.18

 

Great Job Seth!!!

After the race, We all headed down to a local cafe for some grub and chatting before my husband and I headed out on the road to Arizona!