Just Around The River Bend…

12 May

Question: How do employed people train for long distance races? For me, even without a job, I can lack motivation to hit the trails. I can’t even imagine working 8 hours and THEN taking hours to go train. Kudos to all those people that do, but man, I don’t know if I would have it in me.

I recently got a Garmin running watch. It has a bit of a price tag, so I debated for a while about it. Ultimately, I just went for it because this little tool is going to be super helpful in my training. I ended up getting the Forerunner 110 (the one with the pink stripe), and think it is so cool. For the first time off the treadmill, I can track my distance and pace as I run. I took it out for the first time yesterday, and it totally changed my outlook on a run. Instead of turning around when I got tired or when I thought I hit a certain mileage, I was able to push myself farther…like, “One more half mile, and then you can turn around!” I ended up running 8 miles in total. 5 more miles to go until I’m at the half marathon distance. I’m seriously considering waiting to run a half until later in the summer. I just might not be ready in a few short weeks… Ah, I guess we’ll see. Either way, my little watch is kick ass.

There are a few other expenses that add up when you start to run more frequently. I know, all you really need are some running shoes and a sidewalk…BUT…for me, there have been some additional items. Well, for starters, my running shoes. They are about a year old, and I got them from Fitness Sports in DSM. They were over $100. I may need some new ones soonish, but I’ll hold off until I get a job, whenever that blessed day arrives. I like my shoes, but think I’ll get a half size up next time. I think my feet swell when I run, and my second toe is weirdly longer than my big toe. This can create some awkwardness when I run hills, because those second toe toenails take a beating. Ahem, the Bix race last year, ahem, lost my toenail, ahem, grossest thing ever… There is also my requirement, yes, REQUIREMENT for music when I run. I have my little iPod shuffle which is perfect for running. I can put all my embarrassing pop songs with a good beat on there, and it clips to my clothes. I hate having to hold things when I run. One problem with my iPod is that I may be sacrificing my hearing since I always have the volume turned way up. Also, I bought a foam roller. This little baby hurts like hell to use, but really loosens up my leg muscles. A good foam roller will set you back about $25. And then there is my precious (said like Gollum, of course). And that, ladies, is Body Glide. When it’s too warm not to wear shorts, this stuff is your BFF. Is there anything worse than getting chub rub from having your fat thighs rub together when you run?? Body Glide is this stuff that kind of looks like deodorant that you rub on your thighs, or arms, or anywhere awkward that rubs, to prevent the dreaded chub rub. It’s fantastic.

Today, I took my bike out for a while. There are several trails in my vicinity, and I am always a little nervous to explore too much just while jogging #terriblesenseofdirection. Today I went back to the trail of the dreaded dead toads, thinking that if they were still there, at least I’d be on my bike. And guess what? The plague has stopped! I didn’t see any dead toads! Hooray! I took a fork in a trail that I had never taken before. It was so beautiful! I went for miles along the beautiful Mississippi. Ol’ Man River (Showboat? Anyone? Anyone?) is quite lovely, but it made me miss my Des Moines biking gals terribly. Biking alone is truly a lot less fun than biking with others. It brought me back to the day about a year ago when my friends and I biked the High Trestle Trail near Madrid, IA, and then went to that winery…which I can’t remember the name of. Such a great day. I just wish I could teleport everyone here to bike with me along all the wonderful trails the twin cities have to offer.

Next time I am bringing my iPhone so I can take some photos of how pretty the river trails are!

Now I am “starving” and off to go eat some delicious enchiladas.

Peace out, yo!

Kenz

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