TGIF (and PMS, TBH)

Oh yeah, we’re going there.

I swear, I’m not talking about menstruation to be edgy or controversial to get more traffic. I mean, let’s be real we all know there’s like 1.2 people that read this blog.

It’s just that it’s incredibly relevant to my training as it effects everything i think/do/eat/say/feel for these 4 days.

So now that I’ve made this sufficiently awkward… let’s chat! Fun things to know about me: I am STRONGLY affected by my female cycle. Like, every cliche you can think up to the most extreme level–that’s me. Debilitating abdominal cramps, intense fatigue, ridiculously emotionally sensitive, weird cravings and a massive appetite, and yes, often bitchy (although I keep it to internal bitchy thoughts and rarely act on them.)

It’s taken me a solid 9 years, but I’ve finally reached the point where I can tell that when I’m really sad and emotional for 3 days straight, it means by best friend is coming to visit. And I’m not crazy. (Well, not for those reasons. LOL #truth)

Usually, it doesn’t actually affect my running in the literal sense of speed/pain/windedness. It’s all the other things that surround the run that tend to be impacted. Let’s take my half-marathon, June of 2013, for example. The day before the race, my mom + sister + I drove up and stayed in a hotel nearby. That night, long story short, my mom made me feel like shit and my sister wasn’t helping. I was sad/angry/hurt/angry all at once. But the morning of, I tried to shake it off best I could and keep positive (since that’s the cornerstone of my practice).

At mile 8, I got my goddamn period. And it didn’t just quietly announce itself. It stained my shorts in a big way. Looking back, it’s a funny memory because a) I don’t give a F and b) There’s one really cute photo of me thumbs-ing up, but I always crop out the bottom 1/8 because you can blatantly see my shorts.

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On normal, run of the mill, no race, just a training run days, my period most strongly influences my motivation. Typically, my emotions manifest themselves in self-loathing and self-doubt. My exhaustion coupled with my preggo-style bloating don’t help, and I often prefer to stay in bed than to get out on the street (or to the gym), even though my rational mind knows that exercise is *great* for helping menstrual symptoms.

It was really hard today to decide to put on my cold running gear instead of my PJ bottoms and crawl right back into bed. What is easy is using this physical and emotional discomfort as a crutch to fall back on as an excuse for being static. But I prefer to be in motion and to be productive, even if my present-tense hormonal self wants to be a sloth monster. And in the end, I’m so glad that I got to add happy hormones to the hormonal cocktail that is my body right now. Plus, getting outside today makes tomorrow’s run even more exciting.

BECAUSE, regardless of the state of my reproductive system…. today was my first run since Thanksgiving!!! I was very nervous, as I’ve been taking a break for the past two weeks due to my ankle pain (explained in my last post), and I feared it would come right back the moment I hit the pavement. But 2 blocks past, then 5, then a half mile, then 2 miles, and suddenly I had run 5k and only hints of shin pains had emerged. It appears as though I was back on the wagon!

(Despite an incredibly slow time. Like really slow. YOLO. Actually, not YOLO. There was a moment when I looked at my time, and I noticed I was being passed by what looked like a boys’ middle school running club. And I was embarrassed. Wow, 13 year old boys are passing me. I’m some runner. Dressed in this nice cold weather gear, I must look like a total poser who just rolled straight out of Nike [actually all my clothes are from Marshall’s/ TJ Maxx–call me a Maxxinista]. Then I had a moment of clarity: I’ve never run to be fast. I don’t care about improving my times. My motivation has always been self-love and confidence. So who gives a fuck if I’m at a snail’s pace? I’m making myself better. SO YOLO.)

The moral of this whole story: My brain is mush as the semester ends, and I’m hormonal, and I’m sleepy. BUT I’m sleepy after a 4 mile run, for which I am eternally grateful 🙂 🙂 🙂 AND I’m back on that training plan grind, so tomorrow is a lovely 5 miles in the sun! (Fingers crossed!!)

Currently wearing: a Life is Good shirt with a cup of coffee on it and yoga pants because WHAT ELSE IS THERE (seriously thinking about burning my jeans)

Currently working on: Pinterest for work. I’m the luckiest girl alive.

Currently not working on: My final paper, which I very much should be.

Tuesday Morning Rain is fallin’ (aka the apocalyspe)

Let me just acknowledge the elephant in the room up front: it’s been a month + a day since my last post.

Ok, moving on.

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BUT ACTUALLY, the reason for my delay is more than just my busy schedule plus my procrastinating nature. Starting basically right after my last post, I began my training plan, courtesy of No Meat Athlete. For the first few weeks, it’s easy runs on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, with a “long” run (basically 3-4 miles) on Saturday. The weather was starting to get colder, but I was persisting! Slightly out of shape, I was slow but kept it up.

Then, one Saturday (November 22, specifically, when the new moon was just moving into Sagittarius. Screw you, Sagittarius), my run was excruciatingly painful! After a minute on the move, my shins and my ankles were screaming in pain. I could only get 2 miles in that run, and even that was a stretch. What had happened? I made it through a full half-marathon training plan without injury, and suddenly with easy 3milers, I’m down?

Then I realized: I had done my previous run on a treadmill. Even that quick 2 mile run, though, was obviously a struggle. I felt my feet pounding down on the belt like a ton of bricks and my shins were feeling spicy. Prime example of why I hate that machine. I mean, I can barely keep up a 5.5 mph pace, and I end up finishing in pain and feeling badly about myself. Stupid machine.

The following week (after my outdoor sad 2 miles), I took some time off running and spent my time at the gym, doing the elliptical and the bike and stairs, since my ankle had shooting pains every time I attempted to run. Then, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, I ran the annual road race in my home town with my best friend (she’s doing Boston, too!). Since I had nothing to lose, I tried running in my mom’s Nike Airs, which had arch support inserts in them. Not the best idea (they were practically cinder blocks compared to my Nike Frees), but then again, the pain I felt was comparable to what I would have in my normal shoes.

Moral of the story: it’s been 10 days since that race, and I haven’t run. I decided that it would be best to take some time off training and putting myself behind a few miles rather than pushing myself, hurting myself, and ruining my training altogether.

It sucks, though! Nothing feels so triumphant as finishing a run. Even when it’s tough! And it sucks to not see my mileage increasing along with my training plan, and to have to think about getting new shoes, but not knowing what type I’ll need, since my Nike Frees have served me well for the past THREE YEARS.

But pity party aside, I’m hopeful. When I walk to yoga, decked out in my workout gear, I’ll take a half a block and jog it, to see if my ankle does the whole “OH SHIT YOU’RE RUNNING STOP STOP STOP” thing. And it hasn’t been! Or at least, not so intensely. My plan was to get outside this afternoon and take a trip around a block or two (2 miles or so), but when I woke up at 7:30, the apocalypse was taking place outside my window. So I’ll push it back until tomorrow, which is supposed to be a 4 mile run. (OR NOT SINCE IT’S SUPPOSED TO SNOW. Make it Thursday.) I plan to follow my instincts and make that as long (or short) as feels right.

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But I’m back! For real this time. I recently started interning at an awesome website doing their social media, so I am very much in interwebz mode 24/7. Which is a good thing for this blog 🙂

 

xoxoxo cmoney

 

Currently drinking: chai tea w/ 3 bags + coconut almond milk

Currently watching: The Reed Report. The news is depressing

Currently painting my nails: Grease Lightning Grey, inspired by the weather

 

April 20, 2015

I’m back, ladies and gentlemen!

Because finally, I’ve got something exciting to write about.

I officially have a spot in the 2015 Boston Marathon.

Wait…. WHAT!!!???!?

I can hardly believe it but I will be running 26.2 miles in just over 5 months.

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And I’m lucky enough to be running for an organization whose mission is so in line with own. I’m committing to raising $5,000 for the American Medical Athletic Association Youth Fund, who works to fight childhood obesity with physical fitness programs for school-aged children.
If you’re interested in donating to the cause and helping to inspire me out the door on the tough days, anything helps!

https://www.crowdrise.com/amaabostonmarathon2015/fundraiser/caitlinrowles

Get pumped for some regular posts about running + eating + procrastinating + rambling about that senior-year-in-college-what-is-life stuff.

xo