Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I'm still here, I promise

I just looked at my blog and realized it's been nearly 2.5 weeks since I've posted.   Shame on me!  I have had a bit of a writer's block the last couple of months.   I lost interest in writing every day and really struggled with what to share on this blog.  For the past few years this blog has been dedicated to my journey to become an endurance athlete.  It was used as a way for me to keep track of my training, get people involved in the process, and provide another story for other endurance athletes to relate to when they first took the leap into this sport.  I've had a lot of "firsts" while I've been writing this blog. It started out before I ran my half marathon and has evolved along with me as I now can lay claim to an Ironman finish.

My writer's block comes from the fact that I've always used this blog as a way to lay out my challenges and update people on my progress.  Now that I've been through the process for about 3 years now, I feel like the content may become a little monotonous.   The blog may become boring to some, but I do plan on keeping it updated with my training and goals.  I hope that someone out there will find it interesting and useful too. The main purpose is to provide a journal for my thoughts and training.   This sport has really changed me for the better and I think I owe it to myself to write it down in a place where I can go back and read it at some point in the future.  I hope some of you will stick around and keep reading.   I hope to continue to connect with our other athletes in the blogosphere.  Mostly I hope to really be able to show how much of a positive impact endurance sports can have on a life.   I feel blessed to have found something I love to do and can continue to grow into as I age.   I wish the same for all of those around me.   Often times I feel like we get stagnant as we get older.   Age becomes an excuse to get out of shape.   Watching the Ironman World Championships on NBC a couple of weeks ago was a perfect painting of how I want to be when I get older.  I want to be that guy running into barricades at the end of an Ironman because I had the heart and desire to get out there and do it again.  I want to inspire people young and old to get out and challenge themselves.  If I can do that one time, this blog will be a success.   One time makes years and years of writing worth it.   Until next time, Run Happy friends.  I'll be back soon.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Big 12 Champions and Week One of Marathon Training

After many years of watching very mediocre football, sometimes even awful football, Cowboy fans were treated to an incredible performance last night in Stillwater, Oklahoma.   Oklahoma State proved it was the best team in the Big 12 and won it's first outright conference championship in the history of the program.   It was such a great day in Stillwater.   My little brother was along for the ride as we witnessed history in Boone Pickens Stadium after a 44-10 whipping of the OU Sooners.  Now it's time to wait for the BCS rankings in a few hours to see if we did enough to convince voters that we deserve a shot at LSU.  I'm holding out some
hope, but it looks like OSU will come up just a bit short.

This week also marked week one of marathon training.  I really debated about not going for my "long" run today because I've felt a little under the weather and last night's game caused me to be up way past my bed time.   I made myself get out the door though and I'm really glad I did.  I had a steady and solid long run where I focused on pacing and effort.  I'm trying to stay very disciplined with my training this year where I don't knock off some long run at too fast of a clip and lead myself into an injury.  My training plan will be a 3-day run schedule coupled with cross-training and strength-training.  I've basically taken the Hal Higdon Marathon Novice 3 program and the FIRST training program and meshed them together to make sure I'm getting in enough focused runs each week.   I wish my body could handle more running days each week, but my body just isn't made for it.   I have to work with what I have and that limits the total mileage I can put in each week.

Currently my line of thinking is that I'm going to shoot for an 8:15min/mile average pace for my marathon.   This would put me in the 3:36 time slot and would be a huge PR for me at this distance.   I came up with that pace goal by looking at my past performances at the half marathon and 10K distance.  The past few times I've trained for a marathon I never really focused in on a goal this early in the process.  I think by having the mental mindset of a concrete goal will make training more detailed and tailored for better results.   My tempo runs will be done at 7:45 pace and my long runs will be done at 8:45ish depending on what the FIRST training schedule calls for that weekend.   I'm really excited to try to execute this plan and put it to work.  It's marathon time.   I can't wait!!