When the wheels fall off….

This week was a rough one. I had to run alone and early, so my days got moved all around.  I got sick on Thursday. I pushed through Friday and Saturday but didn’t get my 4th run – a 10k in on Sunday. I opted to rest. I did get the long run – the 10 miler in…but it wasn’t pretty.  Here is how this week looked:
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Tuesday:  5 x 1000m: I felt pretty good on this one…I had to run alone this week.  I don’t mind running alone at all but running early when it is eery dark outside…is hard at times.  Today, I was welcomed by a Hamilton County Sheriff sitting in the parking lot where I ran.  He/she was there for more than half of the time I was out running.  I felt safe. :) God provided.  This was also one of the mornings of the meteor shower.  I was able to see a couple of beautiful falling stars.  I would have missed God’s splendor if I had stayed in bed.  For those of you that know me, know, the only way I would see a meteor shower would be in the morning…I turn into a pumpkin between 9:00 -9:30 p.m. ;)
Repeats:
1 – 4:30
2 – 4:35
3 – 4:39
4 – 4:27
5 – 4:33

Friday: 4 – 1 mile repeats: not feeling well…but pushed through – not very consistent here.  I started feeling sick on Thursday. Welcome back to school! Being around our precious children come with many germs…and I got them. I started feeling poorly after telling my students all week that one of the benefits of being physically active and healthy is a healthier immune system…that helps you fight off sickness.  So much for that working this going around! ;) LOL!

I was able to get the first one out okay…but after that I progressively got slower. I know it was my lack of energy.  I still kept them under 8 but I definitely want to be more consist with each repeat.
1 – 7:06
2 – 7:19
3 – 7:33
4 – 7:46

Saturday: 10 miler at 85% – The 1st 5 miles I was able to keep pace and then the wheels fell off. I haven’t had a run feel this bad in a very long time. I finished but I walked a lot the second half.  I hurt all over.  I got mad…I cried…I just felt miserable.  I really hoped my friends would get in their car and come get me.  We ran 5 miles out so I had to make it back. There were times I felt like I truly wasn’t going to make it.  God provided several songs that gave me hope and momentum to finish. Strong Enough  by Matthew West – through HIM I was strong enough to keep putting one foot in front of the other and finish.  You Deliver Me  by Selah – He truly delivered me on this run.  His perfect timing with these songs and others kept me going.  The last mile I was cooling down.  With a quarter-mile to go my sweet friend Gina met me and ran me in.  When I saw her my emotions let go.  I was feeling cruddy…my body hurt and I had been unable to accomplish my goal pace.  She wrapped me up in a hug and said you have been working your tail off and it is okay to have a bad run.  She reminded me I had finished and got it done.   God nudged her to meet me because I so needed it.  Thanks sweet friend!
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Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

First 1.5 (I reset watch to do mile repeats after the first 1.5 miles) – 8:27
2 – 8:30
3 – 8:31
4 – 8:34
5 – 8:44
6 – 9:31
7 – 10:25
8 – 9:43
9 – 10:35
10 -10:29 – saved by an angel.

When I got done, all of my running buddies were waiting(because they had already finished…;)).  We are so blessed to have an awesome group of friends who love the Lord and one another.
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Proverbs 27:17 Iron sharpens iron, and one friend sharpens another.

After our 10 miler we had one more run.  No, I shouldn’t have done it let alone run the 10 miles.  But, we are a team and we were running the Mud Run as the Nutty Muddy Buddies.  We are a bunch of nuts for sure.  So, off we went to conquer mud, ice and obstacles.  We had a great time and my day of running was redeemed.  We ran as a non-competitive team and did really well for just having fun. We were 6th out of 198 teams.  We would have been 26th out of 87 competitive teams if we had competed.  We were thrilled considering all of us had run 7+ miles before the 3.1 Mud Run.

The Mud Run helped me put it all in perspective.  We are going to have good days and bad. They come together….like the ups and downs of the obstacles in the mud run.  After the ice pit, I was frozen and didn’t want to go on…but my team was waiting on me and I had to move….even though my toes were numb.  Scaling the walls were impossible without help…we had to lift each other up!
1 Thessalonians 5.11
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

In the smoke house obstacle, we could not see.  The voices of our teammates guiding and directing us to the light and the exit gave us the strength to move forward.  We affirmed each other and trusted one another through it all.  As I heard their voices, I knew they weren’t going to lead me astray.  It reminded me of when I call out to God.  He is my strength.  I so needed this on this day! I brought up the rear most of the run…but that was okay.  They were all leading me through and we were in it together.
Psalm 138.3
On the day I called, you answered me; my strength of soul you increased.

We finished as one team.  We were able to have FUN and do well – together.  We are all training for Chicago individually…but we are in it as a team.  We celebrate each other’s victories and we help each other with our defeats.  I know good days come with bad. I am so blessed to have others who stand by my side through the thick and thin…no matter how dirty it may get. ;)

Hoping for more good this week.

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This week was a week for me to stop in my tracks and reevaluate where I am.  I am on the right track…I just have to learn to slow down every now and then. :)

Jeremiah 2.25a

“Slow down. Take a deep breath. What’s the hurry? Why wear yourself out? Just what are you after anyway?

Scriptures that give me hope and encouragement in times of sickness and doubt!

Matthew 19:26 

“But Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.’”

2 Corinthians 4:16 

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.”

Philippians 4:13 

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

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When I run…LEAD me…

This week we had a ‘recovery’ week with only 3 days of runs(though one day had 3 runs in that day!) We are only on week 4, but it was time for a little rest. Emphasis on LITTLE! :)  We are running hard, quality runs…so a little recovery and rest was in order.  As I am typing this I just realized we are almost 1/3 of the way through our training…WOW! Only 9 weeks left! Can I say it again? WOW!

Here is out it all panned out:

Run 1 – 8 x 400s – Tuesday
1:31
1:37
1:41
1:43
1:39
1:31
1:40
1:36
Felt pretty good.  I still need to work on consistency.  I was able to start faster than I have in the past couple of weeks.  I did correct that…now to keep them closer to each other time wise.  We have a great space to run early in the morning.  It is even better now that they have repaved it. It always helps knowing Yoli is meeting me and suffering with me. ;) In fact, all four of us who are training for Chicago were running together, separately…virtual partners.  It sure does help knowing they are out there! Iron Sharpens Iron! i2
Proverbs 27.17  
As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.

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Run 1 – done early a.m. – We like to get it over with!

Run 2 – scheduled 5 mile run – Saturday – substituted with 8k Missionary Ridge Road Race – 37:15 – average pace 7:51 (on Garmin)
1 – 7:34
2 – 7:43
3 – 7:46
4 – 8:21
.74 – 5:51 (7:55 pace)
This was my first time running this race.  I am so glad I did. It was a tough rolling hill course.  I was thankful for my training 400/800 meter repeats because that is what I felt like I was doing…struggling up hill and recovery down hill – repeat.  It paid off! I did not PR this distance but I did come in 2nd in my age group.  I didn’t look at my watch throughout the whole race and just ran on feel.  Race day is magic.  I produce so much better on race day than in training…that gives me hope. I also had the awesome privilege of running in a newer running friend I met through another running friend.  She calls us running family! I am so thankful for my running family…they get me through when I don’t want to do it myself.  Great run Jessica! It was fun spending my Saturday with you!

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Run 2– Missionary Ridge Road Race – It was a beautiful morning for a run. Cooler temperatures and gorgeous views.
Run 3 – 3 5ks –  Sunday
1st 5k: 25:29 (6:45a.m.)

8:22

8:18
8:00
:47
Rested 10 minutes…
2nd 5k: 25:13
7:56
8:17
8:11
:47
3rd 5k : 24:44 (1:30p.m.) HOT but best. :)
7:54
8:04
8:00
:45
The first two 5ks were done early in the cooler weather.  Yoli was kind enough to come support me and run some with me so I would not be out there alone. She is SO good! I couldn’t ask for better.  I was a little nervous about these runs.  I tweaked my back on Thursday and rested Thursday and Friday. I was registered for the race yesterday and made myself do it…I am glad I did. :)  So today I was worried it might be too much…but it wasn’t.  It was the confidence builder run I needed for the week.  My first run was okay.  My second run was better and the 3rd was the best.  I was thrilled with my negative splits and SHOCKED I could do it in the heat. I so needed this day…the one I dreaded…to be so good.
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Run 5k x 3 in one day
God continues to remind me that He is in this and I can do it with His strength.  Rebecca St. James song Shine Your Glory Down came on as I was running the last one…she starts with “When I run, lead me!”  This is so my prayer! Here’s to another successful week…
Week 5 I am ready…When I run, lead me!
Psalm 25.5
Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.

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August 9, 2015 · 9:32 pm

Week 3 – Marathoner in TRAINING…

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RUN 1:  8x800s w/ 2 minute rest – Felt okay – hard – need to get more consistent!!!

1-3:37

2-3:37

3-3:47    

4-3:45

5-3:46

6-3:57 – don’t know what happened…:)    

7-3:48

8-3:46

RUN 2:  5k @ 80% 10k pace: Best feeling run yet!!
Mile 1 – 8:03
Mile 2-  8:04
Mile 3 – 7:55
.1 – 7:28
RUN 3:  5k @ 85% with 3x400m @ 100% effort in the middle: Hard! :)
Mile 1.12 – 9:10 – average pace 8:12
1st .25 mile – 1.39 minutes
2 minute recovery – .23 miles
2nd .25 mile – 1.42 minutes
2 minute recovery – .21 miles
3rd .25 mile – 1.45 minutes
2 minute recovery – .22 miles
Remainder .77  miles – 9:10
RUN 4:  10K time trial:  51:07 – 8:16 pace w/ 1.98 warm up at 10:21 pace and a time of 20:26 – Not my best at all – PR is 48:07 – but as my coach said…I probably didn’t have a 2 mile warm-up on that one. And as we get faster the times are harder to beat.  I will say I had to make a pit stop half way through and my second half was much faster after the pit stop! :)  We had a BEAUTIFUL moon to run by this day! God’s glory was all around!

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I finally feel like I am making progress.  It was a good week.  God is getting us there one step at a time! He is the reason we run and He will get us through to that finish line!  Here are two scriptures I put on photos to help encourage all of us who are training:

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Running Blessed!

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Week 2 – oh how I despised YOU! ;)

My post is a little late because I wanted to forget about last week’s training.  Here is the subject line in the email I sent to my  running coach:

Week 2…YUCK! :)

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These pictures show my real feelings about the whole week.  I am not sure why it was so bad…humidity, heat, fatigue…excuses! LOL! But it was! When I emailed my runs to our coach I felt like a poor student reporting bad test results to my teacher.

I will say I love having goals for every run.  It breaks the monotony and helps with purpose and getting it done…but oh, do they hurt! :)  I sent the girls a text at one point saying, “what doesn’t kill us or make us puke, makes us stronger! Right?”

We decided to tackle the hardest run first…Wow! Here is how that played out:

Run 1 – Tuesday – 8x800m with 600m recovery
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343
346
350
346
347
357
400 – dodging ankle biter dog!
Last week’s 800s were better but both workouts were challenging.  One we had rest and the other active recovery.  It does make a difference. We also had a dog nipping at our ankles on the last repeat.  Not so much fun! :)  When we were done…we were done!  We sent this picture to show how we felt about 800m repeats! Deirdre was right there with us – many miles away!
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Run 2 – 6 x 400m repeats with 90 second rest…
146
132
131
136
136
131
We thought going into this one…piece of cake! It is only 400m and only 6 of them.  Well, we were wrong once again! They were tough.  As you can see, I start out slower…I have to work on making it more consistent with the others.

The 3rd run was better…I ran it thinking of the fallen heroes in Chattanooga and the sacrifice they made.  Praying and thinking of others made it much more doable.  I am running. God has blessed me to be able to move.  I need to be thankful for life and the ability to put one foot in front of the other…daily!

Run 3 – 5 miles at 80% 5k pace – goal 807-809 – average 809 
Mile 1: 804
Mile 2: 803
Mile 3: 805
Mile 4: 808
Mile 5: 823 – This mile was hard…I tried to pick it back up and was unsuccessful.  My average was good overall but I really struggled that last mile.

 

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Run 4 – Sunday:  5 miles @ 90% 10k pace – 8:00-8:05 goal – 810 average – yuck!
This was the worst run by far.  I had a really hard time and didn’t keep pace.  All I can say is YUCK!
Mile 1: 801
Mile 2: 805
Mile 3: 808
stopped and walked for about 30 seconds between mile 3 and 4
Mile 4: 812
Mile 5: 821
Tough and brutal!!! But done! Mentally challenging! But done! I was so glad to have others out there with me.  It made me keep going and not quit.  We chose to have a little fun once we finished.

 5 miles @  90% of 10k pace on a bike is NO problem….

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Thankful for friends to suffer with…and grow with!

Proverbs 27.17 ~ As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.

This week’s runs showed me that we will have bad runs…we will have good runs….and we will have done runs! And in the middle of it all we can still have fun runs…we can still grow and we can still do more than we thought! All runs were finished and I didn’t regret one of them!!!!

1 Corinthians 1.11-12

11 being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully  12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.

Galatians 6.9
9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
So here’s to week 3….
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BFF…Best Forever Friends!

 michelle2

Do you have one of those friends who knows you better than anyone else? I do! God blessed me many, many years ago!  He has actually blessed me over and over again with amazing friends!   I truly believe this has been one of life’s greatest blessings from God – Best Forever Friends.  Living in so many different places has allowed me to meet many wonderful people and thankfully, make many best forever friends.

This week I have had the incredible privilege of having my longest BFF visit! Along with her daughter, she made the trek from Arkansas to Tennessee.  The awesome thing about this BFF is that we have been friends since we were two years old. Needless to say, we have been friends A LONG time! Above is a picture of us celebrating my 3rd birthday at our daycare. Many of my first memories include Michelle.

After Michelle left, I was going through Instagram photos and someone posted this scripture:

1 Thessalonians 5.11
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up,
just as in fact you are doing.

Michelle came to mind as I read this post.  She has always encouraged me NO MATTER WHAT.  God has blessed our friendship in many ways over the years. We are more like sisters due to the fact we have known each other so long.  We were roommates in college and then again once we graduated.  We worked together several times throughout those years.  She knows me…the real me! We can get together after months/years of not spending time together and it is like we were together just yesterday.

I felt compelled to blog about this so I could do as she has done for me – ENCOURAGE and BUILD UP others! Michelle is definitely not my only BFF…but she is the one that has been around the longest and through the most with me.  I know I can go to her NO MATTER WHAT! We all need one or more of these type of friends.  We also have to be one!

There are SO many of you reading this that are my BFFs and I am thankful for each of you! All of you have made me a better person in so many ways! You know who you are…:)  Thank you for encouraging me and building me up in life.  God has blessed me with you!

Proverbs 24.14

A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

 
Ecclesiastes 4.9-10
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:  If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!
 
Proverbs 27.17
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
Life is tough as we have seen over the last couple of weeks…we all need friends! Friends we can count on through thick and thin. Friends who will be real with us when we need it and friends who will love us no matter what.  Let me encourage you to be one of those BFFs to someone! Let’s encourage others and build them up!
Proverbs 27.17
As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.

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Chicago Marathon Training – Week 1 Recap

I will start this blog with a funny! Several years ago a friend captured a photo of me finishing a race. It was ugly! I was running up a hill while trying to stay ahead of the 3rd place female….it was a battle! Boy – did he capture it in print.

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Shortly there after, a running meme started circulating around the internet.  It was me! (Not really…but, boy it could have been!) This is when I thought, hmmmm, I need to do something about my form. LOL!

what-i-feel-like-when-running

I so thought I had it going on! I finished in second place…surely I had awesome form! NOT!!!!  I printed the two photos together as inspiration. It has taken me a while to get there…but I am making great strides.  I would say I really didn’t make it until these last 8 months.

Last year I gained entry into the  2014 Chicago Marathon and once I returned from Boston, I kept training.  But, I was running injured and stopped running in July.  The running had taken a toll on my body.  Since April 2013 I had run 4 marathons and was on track to do my 5th in two years…not that that was what I was going for at all…it was just how it worked out.  After a long run in California, I made the tough decision my body needed a break.  I would stop training and defer my Chicago training.

That was the best decision ever…for a couple of reasons!  First, instead of training alone I am now in this with the 3 others I mentioned in the previous posts.  We are in this together during the good runs and the bad ones.  Whether we are running together or virtually, we know we are in this with each other! Secondly, I found CrossFit which led me to CrossFit Endurance and Pose running.

My CrossFit coach had a Pose Running Seminar in September of 2014.  I hadn’t been running for a couple of months and thought it would be a good time to start back. Through this seminar I learned proper form and technique. Boy, I had it all wrong…as the above picture shows oh, so well!  I am still learning! Not growing up as an athlete, I was not used to skill work and drills.  I was familiar with it of course, just didn’t do it.  I just ran.   Now, it is a very important part of my training.  A VITAL PART!

This is all so encouraging to me because I was able to qualify for Boston twice with HORRIBLE form and technique.  Now, that I am running better…I can’t wait to see what is in store.  God has a plan! He knew, as He did with Boston, I needed a team to train with…and a great coach as well.  I have both!  A team that encourages me mentally, spiritually and physically! When I don’t want to go…they are there to hear me gripe and then they kick me out the door. ;)  Our coach knows our potential and pushes just enough! I am beyond excited.  Another thing that got me excited was comparing my oh so horrible picture to a recent race finish photo. As I said, I have come a long way…but, I am still a work in progress.

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Now to the week of training.

Tuesday – 10 x 200 meter repeats with 300 meter recovery – Not too bad…did it with Yoli and we got it done in our neck of the woods.  It is so awesome having her out there running her pace as I run mine!

Thursday -6 x 800 meter repeats with 2 minute rest – Not so much fun! Again, I met Yoli and we got it done.  I just don’t like 800 meter repeats. LOL! And 6 of them…yuck!

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Friday – 5k @ 85% of 10k pace – I did this one alone.  Fun! Thanks to my sweet husband I have my new Garmin watch to help me stay on track.  The first .25 mile, the watch yelled at me continually.  I was either too fast or too slow. Finally, it stopped beeping and I found my groove and stayed on track the rest of the run.  I accomplished my target pace! So very thankful!

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Saturday – 5k time trial – DIDN’T HAPPEN! Mentally I have such a hard time with time trials.  It is so hard for me to make race day pace without a race.  So, I looked for one all around the area to no avail. The closest was Knoxville and I just couldn’t justify it! So, I skipped it. Not really…I just put it off until Sunday when I knew Yoli would be able to run with me or should I say in front of me.  So Saturday’s run happened on Sunday. :)

How was it? It was okay.  It was hot.  It was humid.  It was, well it is done!

Here is the run report I sent to my coach:

Run 1 – 10 x 200 –
:50 
:52
:53
:52
:51
:51
:49
:51
:59 – I don’t have a clue what happened here. :)
:48
Run 2 – 6 x 800 –
3:46 – slow getting started….
3:40
3:41
3:43
3:40
3:41
Run 3 – 5k @ 85% 10k pace – GOAL pace – 8:01-8:09 –  25:08 – PACE – 8:07
Run 4 – 5k time trial – 23:56 – 1 minute and 19 seconds slower than PR of 22:37 
Time trials kick my butt mentally.  I have to learn how to power through them.  My hamstrings were really sore from workouts…excuses, excuses. :)  But ALL DONE!
WEEK ONE – is in the books! We are thrilled to be chipping away! I have had faster weeks, faster times…but each time, whether faster or slower is making me stronger and better! Today, Rick Warren tweeted a great quote: When setting a goal, what matters is not who you think YOU are, but rather who you think GOD is. My goal is to finish well! And I am sure His is the same!
2 Timothy 4.7
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Hebrews 12.1-2
Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

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Faith, food and fitness…

This morning I came home from my 3rd run of the week and was hungry.  (Imagine that! Mike would say I am ALWAYS hungry! :))  As I was thinking about breakfast, I remembered I had just picked some butternut squash from our garden.  The cool thing about the butternut squash is that I didn’t plant it intentionally.  It grew from table scraps we threw out in our raised bed garden. I googled recipes and found a great one – butternut squash hash.  I made my own adjustments to the recipe and presto – breakfast was served.  It was pretty amazing if I say so myself. :)

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BUT, the awesome thing about this recipe was it was on a blog named Food, Faith and Fitness.  This summer God has been tweaking things in my life and these three words were impressed on my heart on 23 June 2015.  I wrote them in the order – Faith, Food, Fitness.

This past year my journey has truly been all three of these combined…the puzzle is finally coming together in terms of wholeness – spiritual health, mental health and physical health! I was so encouraged when I found the site I started looking around.  I found a blog post from April that truly hit home with me today considering the events of yesterday.  It was just a series of photos/quotes/scripture written or taken by random people.  I wanted to share some of them.  They hit home for me!

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Let’s remember where our hope comes from – it comes from the Lord!

The blog Food Faith Fitness can be found here:    http://www.foodfaithfitness.com/

Stop by…I was encouraged and I know you will be as well!

Now to my run…today’s run was a 5K at 85% of my 10k pace.  I was not looking forward to this run.  It meant keeping a steady pace without a race environment.  Tomorrow’s time trial 5k will be the same. :(  But, this is what makes us stronger.  I also thought a lot about the blessing of being on the road today.  My mind shifted to the ones affected firsthand yesterday.  Some of the first responders and police personnel are my friends.  I workout with them.  I have run with them.  It made me give thanks once again for every step I am able to make…  Their lives were forever changed yesterday as mine was in Boston on April 15, 2013.  We will forever know where we were on those days.  It changes you!

As today’s run pushed me to places I didn’t want to go…it made me better! It made me stronger.   I can refuse to get out there and do it or I can move forward through it.  Some things are thrown at us without us knowing they are coming and we are not prepared…and others we choose to do and go through.  In either case, our attitude and our faith in the process can and will get us through!  One step at a time…we do get #stronger!

Joshua 1.9 

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.

Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for theLord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Friday run – 5K at 85% of 10k pace – done

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#strong….

#strong – Whether it be #chattanoogastrong, #noogastrong or #bostonstrong – The word “strong” has been paired with cities that are close to my heart and has gained new meaning for most of us over the past several years.  It’s pairing has followed senseless tragedy.  A tragedy where innocent people lost lives and where phenomenal people have helped save them.

When we feel a personal connection to the tragedy it does something inside.  God has placed me close to two of these cities…two of these tragedies…way too close!  As I ponder it, I know there is a reason.  I don’t know what the reason is and I don’t know that I ever will on this side of eternity.

We live in a fallen world.  We live in an evil world.  BUT, we also live in a world of selfless individuals who are willing to protect and serve for our freedoms.  Today we lost four of those heroes and several more were injured.  Senseless is the first word that comes to mind – senseless!  In the middle of the chaos heroes were made and communities were made stronger! #strong

I went back to the blog I wrote the day after Boston 2013 to help me process the activities of today.  It has been so hard to get my mind/heart wrapped around it all. And why it keeps happening!  The statements I wrote then, along with the scripture brought calm back to my soul…

God is showing me He is in control.  Tragedy causes people to search for reasons why…to search for a sense of hope.  We may never know why but God is providing hope.  He is in control.  Romans 8.28 – For we know that all things work together for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose.

A friend sent me a devotion today.  It was talking about being thankful in all circumstances.  My brother sent me 1 Thessalonians 5.18 – here is 1 Thessalonians 5. 16-18….16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.  It is so hard to be thankful for the tragedy that unfolded on Marathon Monday but in the devotion it stated again, we can’t see the big picture. He can.

“Remember who our God truly is, a God who is there and a God who cares.  So let us pause to consider our Great King. Let’s look on heavenly things for a moment to calm our nerves.”  Full blog here: http://wp.me/p1uMx6-lo

#strong in Christ is what gets me through daily.  He has shown me through tragedy and through triumph HE is there and will be my strength when I can’t do it alone….which is often.  Hope is found in Him and Him alone.  We are just passing through this chaotic world…thank goodness.  Love others! Pray often! Stay #strong….I am proud to say I am #chattanoogastrong and #bostonstrong BUT most importantly I am #Jesusstrong Because we know HE wins in the end!

Psalm 119.28 ~ My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word.

Ephesians 6.10 ~ Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.

Isaiah 40.29  ~ He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

Philippians 4:13 Art Print

I want to say thanks to all of those  in our community who did an amazing job today bringing calm back to our city.  You will be in my prayers as will your families.  Praying for peace and comfort for the families who lost loved ones. Praying for peace and comfort for those who were injured as well as their families.  Here is my prayer for all involved:

Isaiah 40:27-31
27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and speak, O Israel,

“My way is hidden from the LORD, and my right is disregarded by my God”?
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint, and strengthens the powerless.
30 Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted;
31 but those who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.

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Let the fun continue…Day 2~800s!

See how we positioned the name of the church in the background….that was intentional! Now that the 800m repeats are done…we need REST! :)

6 x 800 meters with 2 minute rest – Whew! That was fun! Not! But done! It sure makes it easier when you know someone else is out there pushing hard too.  And then, when she finishes first, she is always encouraging me to the very end.  I don’t know what I would do without the best training buddies EVER!

Yoli, Deirdre and Shannon and I are all in this together! We will finish the full on crazy 26.2 in October! Iron sharpens iron is what this is all about.  We run to glorify God and we do it with like-minded friends who push and sharpen us along the way.  It makes this journey so much sweeter!!

Proverbs 27.17 ~ As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

Legs were a little sore from doing back squats yesterday.  I am trying to learn the balance between my CrossFit workouts and running.  I need them both but I need to balance them.  This seems to be an on-going theme in my life. Balance! I will find it!

Proverbs 11:1 – A false balance [is] abomination to the LORD: but a just weight [is] his delight.

Running Blessed!

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Crazy & Busy…or BOTH!

This summer God has been dealing with me when it comes to busyness and/or craziness.  These two words have been used as adjectives to describe me a lot lately! Wow! I know that everyone who uses these to describe me are doing it in jest…but there is so much truth to both.  Are they bad descriptions? Yes and no! Yes, when they get in the way of what should be my main priority.  No, when they are in line with God’s will for my life!  So, these two words got me thinking, contemplating and re-examining where I am in line with His will and calling on my life.  (I know-thinking, contemplating and re-examining can be considered crazy and scary!)

So today, my devotional was titled BUSYNESS.  HMMM!  And then the above picture was posted online.  I do believe the busyness gets in the way more times than not.  I figured this would be the best time to meet it head on.  All summer I have said once I have a chance to slow down I would make a ‘new’ plan for how I say yes and no to things in front of me.  One thing I read earlier this summer on a blog or post was to make sure all things are God-initiated.  Not all things I am busy with are bad…there are just way too many of them. :) When that happens I neglect my quiet time with God.  I neglect my family.  I fall down on my job.  It’s like running with too many ‘things/gadgets’ on me – it slows me down and make me inefficient/ineffective! I don’t want that. I want God to have my best, my family to have my best and my job to have my best.

Where does this leave me?  It leaves me learning to BE STILL. The Lord says He will fight for me if I am still…Who wouldn’t want Him on his or her side?

Exodus 14.14 –The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

Here’s to being still and saying no unless it is God-initiated.

Now to the crazy claim! Yes, I am FULL ON CRAZY!  16 years ago, God gave me the desire to run…for fun. :) 6 years ago, God gave me the desire to run faster…not always fun…but rewarding.  Then 11 months ago, I was introduced to CrossFit and my whole world did turn CRAZY! (At least that is what I am being told, over and over and over again!) But, I disagree.  I found something that helped me realize God’s potential for my body.  He designed us to MOVE! He designed our bodies to be fueled well with what He has provided and to move well with His incredible design.  I have seen results unlike any other time in my life.  Why? I now see my body as His temple and treat it as such.  (Body image has been a struggle for me my whole life – this has finally taken hold – I am HIS and I need to glorify Him with ALL things!…this is another whole blog post!)

Now, that I am finally putting all of the pieces of the puzzle together, I am seeing results.  My body has responded very well to eating healthy – His way! It has also responded well to moving in different ways –  running and performing high-intensity functional movements several times a week.  My running performance has improved because of the combination of it all.  I am so excited about this! Why? Because as His plan would have it …I have the amazing opportunity to run the Chicago Marathon AND the New York Marathon this fall.  I deferred my entry to Chicago last year due to burn out and injury.  It was the best thing I could have done because that is when CrossFit and CrossFit Endurance found me.  I am a new runner now.  I run better and more efficiently….hence the better performance.

Chicago and New York are both part of the World Majors.  The WMM is a series consisting of six of the largest and most renowned marathons in the world: Tokyo, Boston, Virgin Money London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago and TCS New York City Marathon. I have done London and Boston.  After November 1st, I will have done Chicago and New York.  I will have Tokyo and Berlin left.  God planted this seed a very long time ago when I was just running for fun.  This was way before I realized He was going to use running as part of my ministry for Him.

Running has been God-initiated from the beginning…way before I realized it.  With that being said…this blog will now be about my journey to Chicago and beyond.  thenextmailboxboston is taking me to Chicago first and on to a walk(because that is what I will be doing-3 weeks after Chicago) in New York’s Central Park.  Will you join me on this God-given journey? I cant’ wait to see how this training season plays out.

Chicago training officially started today.  Yay!  This training plan will be done completely different from in the past.  I will only run 4 days a week and will focus on quality runs vs. quantity.  I am excited because there of my 3 other running angels who are running the Chicago Marathon as well.  We will be in this together.  i2 – Iron Sharpens Iron!

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
 Proverbs 27.17

Today was day one of training.  Day one is done and in the books.  I am going to keep a simple journal to keep track of my times so I can report back to my coach.  I am also going to document here for accountability purposes.  Some days I just don’t want to run.  Now I will have more eyes on whether or not I do it. :) i2!

Here is the week’s schedule:

Tuesday – 10 x 200 meter repeats with 300 meter recovery – DONE!

Thursday – 5k @ 85% of 10k pace

Wednesday or Friday – 6 x 800 meter repeats with 2 minute rest

Saturday – 5k time trial

Here’s to a great day looking forward to a great first week and an awesome 12 weeks!

Running Blessed and to Glorify HIM every step of the way! Trish

Habakkuk 2.2-3 – My training passage!

Then the LORD answered me and said, “Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run. “For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.…

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