Someone’s always talking about some new life-changing diet or health fad that will improve your life by 1000% and make all your dreams come true… but you don’t need any of that stuff, trust me. I’ve discovered the real secret to success:
Want to test your willpower? Make your ab muscles sore without doing any crunches? End up with a smokin’-hot farmer’s tan? Sleep better at night? Have a good reason for healthy snacking? Beef up your calves so that it’s hard to get your skinny jeans over them? Have an excuse to go (running) shoe shopping?
Train for a half marathon!
I’ve got just under one month to go until my first-ever half marathon, and overall, I’m still feeling pumped up and excited for race day. After nearly 8.5 years of running, it’s been really fun to follow an official training plan and challenge myself in a different way each day. I know I’ll never be the fastest (and speed intervals completely crush me sometimes), but I’m having a good time trying new things.
I discovered that the amount of sleep I get makes a huge difference in my pace and how I feel during a run. Sometimes, when the baby is up in the middle of the night or it’s been an insanely busy week, I question why I ever thought doing this was a good idea, because being a parent just makes you so tired. But slow miles are better than no miles, even on little sleep.
And I can’t help but feel accomplished when I get out there and get it done, despite the wind or rain. If I even come close to finishing in two hours on race day, I will be ecstatic.Thankfully, my sister-in-law Lelia has already done this a few times, and she’s been able to give me some great advice along the way, including coming up with healthy post-run snacks, since I’m a pretty picky eater. Kind bars, string cheese, and almonds have all been my favorites after finishing a long run.
Once I hit about 6 miles or so, I usually start to feel like I could just keep on running forever (although once I finally stop, my legs are always a little achey, reminding me that running indefinitely isn’t an option quite yet). I’ve actually been surprised to find that my sorest muscles after a long run are my abs, which I usually notice when I wake up and try to roll out of bed the next morning.
I invested in a second pair of running shoes (Saucony Kinvara 7) after reading this study, which found that runners who don’t always use the same model of shoes have a 39% lower risk of injury. Plus, how can you go wrong with all this neon?
Here’s to a few more weeks of long runs before RACE DAY! 🙂