After Midnight Madness in mid-July, I’ve been completely focused on training for IMT Des Moines Marathon. Needless to say, my sprint triathlon dream had been put on hold, as I had barely been in the pool. A couple weeks ago at a track workout, Megan suggested putting together a sprint tri team, with her friend Cassie swimming, me on the bike and her running. So I transferred my individual registration to a team and next weekend I will be riding 20k on my bike. I have a feeling my ass is going to be sore for a few days as I’ve not been on my bike much this summer as I have running brain going on. But I’m excited for this!
Through the course of my training, I’ve run 1000 miles since lacing up my running shoes in 2011. The past couple of weeks I’ve run my farthest and longest with my long runs. I hit 14 miles last week and yesterday was 15 miles. I’m also getting closer to running comfortably for 3 hours. Of course, the temperature dropping this past week definitely helped boost my training pace. Most of the summer my long runs have been between 12-14 minute/mile. With the cooler temps the past couple of weeks, I’m more consistent at an 11-12 minute/mile pace. I’ve read that the marathon requires quite a bit of mental training along with physical training. I concur, my ego took some major blows when my early long runs had dropped to a much slower pace than my spring runs. I’ve had to remind myself constantly that the long runs are to build endurance and to get me used to being tired and still moving through it. Plus, the temps in mid October will be more inline for me to run between a 10:30-11:00/mile pace.
I also became a member of Oiselle’s Volee on July 31st. I had a few motivating factors. Free shipping on orders, a spike bag and singlet, $20 towards running bottoms, $25 towards funding newbie elite athletes, connecting with other women runners. And whatever other perks that will come my way.
In a world where women are constantly inundated with images of what you should look like, what you should be into, women being pitted against one another, its a rollercoaster of emotion. I like the overall message of empowerment that Oiselle is building in their community. I am excited to be a small part of it. I still struggle with body image issues. I became aware of Oiselle when they had their first runway show during NYC’s Fashion Week. Elite runner Lauren Fleshman was criticized for being extremely cut and looking like a man because of her muscular upper body and ripped abs. Lauren then fired back with a picture and blog post of her with her belly not having washboard abs and detailing how she trained insanely to get the cut look for the runway show. Since then Oiselle has been building their elite stable with more strong, inspiring women runners.
Growing up I had very few female friends and was constantly picking on myself for my looks and inability to “do x like blank does.” I joined my junior high track team in an attempt to be athletic and fit in with the popular crowd. I came from a very small school district, where most of the students had been in classes together since kindergarten. I started in the district in the middle of 5th grade. I was quiet, played flute in the band and was a complete loner. High school wasn’t much better as you throw in speech and drama and being an academic overachiever. But for the two years of high school that I was on the girls track team, I never felt that I didn’t belong on the team. Granted, I was slower than most of my teammates. However, I knew if one of them was slacking and I caught them in practice, that was motivation to keep them on their toes. I didn’t run the last two years of high school; I had shin splints for both seasons prior, my parents weren’t supportive and only showed up for one track meet in those two seasons and complained that it was cold and I didn’t win any of my races. So I took off my running shoes in 1999 and didn’t lace them back up until the end of 2010.