New year resolutions for the injured runner

New year resolutions seem good in theory but I don’t know if I really stick to them. I usually come up with a list of a few goals at the start of each year, but I also change the goals throughout the year as the months change and the shape of my year also changes.

Here are my current goals. Note, that at this time, I know I won’t be running again for another four months or so.

  1. Do at least 20 minutes of strength and core each day — Yes, you read that correctly. Every day. I gave up on my walking goal since Seattle has gotten so freaking cold! I started this new goal on Jan. 9 and have so far stuck to it. What honestly helps me do this is following along with random YouTube videos. I just do a search for “core workouts” and do whatever comes up. If you have any specific video recommendations, please send them my way!
  2. Join the YMCA before February — Regardless of when I can run again, I need to continue working out and cross train. Swimming is my “substitute” to running. And, once I am running again, I will continue to swim as cross training days. (Something I never did regularly before and will help in my plans to never be injured from running again!)
  3. Continue journaling — I used to keep a “dear diary” type of journal. No, I did not write “dear diary” but I had been keeping journals since I was in sixth grade. I’d just write about what happened that day and my feelings. I didn’t write daily but was very consistent with it. About a year ago (so even prior to getting injured) I stopped for some reason. I guess I just got too busy. I was tired of always writing “I’m feeling tired” countless times in my journals. Now my plan is to not write the details and all my feelings of the days, but to just write one sentence (or more if I feel like it) to describe one positive thing that happened that day.
  4. Read one book a month — This is really hard for me. Bryce always jokes that I never read. But, I guess it’s true so it’s not a joke? I enjoy reading but always say I don’t have time. I’m going to make a habit of reading before bed or instead of those minutes where I am aimlessly scrolling through social media on my phone while I sit at home, I will pick up a book instead! This is honestly going to be my hardest goal of them all.

I know I’m late to the game in establishing my new year goals. But hey, better now then never, right?

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A former faster, fitter self

I’m trying to remember what I felt when I was racing those early miles at the Eugene Marathon — or even any of my long training runs leading up to that race.

Mile 3 of Eugene Marathon

Mile 3 of Eugene Marathon

Because I felt great during all of those miles.

I felt strong, fit and fast.

The race was a month-and-a-half ago, yet my body feels like it was half-a-year ago.

I feel like I’ve lost my base, my fitness, my speed — all of it!

(That’s what I get for running so sporadically the past month …)

Several weeks ago I began feeling very sluggish and well, “fat.” And, yes, I know you are rolling your eyes but as a runner, when you gain a little weight, it makes a huge difference.

And, it wasn’t all in my head because I have discovered that several of my work pants no longer fit me. My roommate Joanna didn’t believe me so I had to physically show her that one of them will no longer button! (Her response: Well, maybe your hips are finally coming in, Kristin! So, you know, later on you can give birth…)

I scrolled through all of the photos my dad captured of me during Eugene. And, even the ones on the track where I am in oh-so-much-pain, at least I still look (kind of) strong.

I want that strong to come back. I want to feel fit again. (And, I want to be able to fit into all of my pants!)

This means being disciplined and start running regularly again. I haven’t pinpointed what my next race will be so for now I will develop a base so that when training begins, I won’t have to start from square one.

Because, right now I feel like I’m at zero.

So calm, so confident.

So calm, so confident.

But starting at zero means there’s nowhere to go but up.

So, up I go!

Monday musings

My friend asked me what I had planned for tonight.

Not running was high on the list. (Yay for honoring the rest days!) I’ve got to say though, my brain is so well-trained that I automatically go to change into running clothes immediately when I get home from work.

Instead of running in my running clothes, today I took out the trash, recycle and food waste, unloaded the dishwasher, folded laundry, did core and strength training, AND made lasagna.

Yes, I made an entire tray of lasagna all for myself. (And, I’m not even embarrassed to say that I ate two-and-a-half pieces and am starting to feel hungry again … gotta love marathon training eating!)

Training for a marathon is a lot of work. Whenever I tell my mom that I am tired, she tells me to not do marathons, that they take up too much of my time.

Yes, they do take up a lot of time. But, I think it’s worth it.

Yes, I rarely get to see a weekend where I sleep in, but I can sleep in once my marathon is over!

And, it’s all about prioritizing and making the time.

It was nice that today I had “nothing” to do. It was relaxing to do the chores that I normally should do on the weekends but as of recent have not had the time or energy to do so.

As someone who loves to jam-pack her schedule with lots of activities, it’s the afternoons/evenings like these where I am reminded that alone time is just as important as social time with friends.

It keeps you sane. It keeps you well-rested. It continues the word-flow on your blog.

And, it gets the trash out on a Monday afternoon (which is a good thing since pickup is Tuesday).

Leveling up to “real person” status

A year ago, I didn’t feel like a “real person.” I wasn’t employed. I was living in my parents’ house in the bedroom with pastel-colored walls that I spent my adolescence in. I was still covered under my mom’s health insurance. I didn’t think I was contributing to society in any significant way. I was in my quarter-life crisis.

Now, I have a full-time job. I am able to save a little more than 20 percent of my monthly earnings. I have my own health insurance — including vision and dental! I have multiple IRAs. I have my own place. (OK, so I do go home every weekend, but seriously, if you lived here where I work, you would too.)

HOWEVER, I am far from being a real person still yet.

But, I pay bills! Just the other month I had to shell out more than $190 for physical therapy. Yeah, still doesn’t matter. There’s a lot I’m not paying for.

The reason I can afford to save about 20 percent of my monthly salary each month (which is barely anything to begin with — hello, I’m a journalist!) is because I don’t own my car and pay for my own auto insurance. Some day I will pay my parents back. On multiple occasions, my dad has kindly offered to fill up my gas tank. At the end of every weekend, my mom sends me off with a bag of groceries, so I don’t spend much on food during the work-week. Eventually, I will pay them back. If it weren’t for them, I honestly don’t think I would be saving any money at all. I would be scraping to make ends meet. I would not be able to come back to the city every weekend — a one way ferry ride with the car is $12.15.

So, some think that I am a real person, but really, I am a fake real person.

The other morning I received a text from a friend at 6:17 a.m. It woke me up from my slumber. He was somewhere at an airport in a different time zone. Afterward I mentioned to him that it was pretty early when he sent the initial text. His response: I realized this too late, I think I was hoping you were already up for your job-profession?

Even though I have a “professional” job, it doesn’t mean I wake up early either. I guess I am a fake real person who shows up at the office around 10 a.m. sometimes 10:30.