Once a sprinter…

…always a sprinter?

Me receiving the baton in a 4x100m race

Me receiving the baton in a 4x100m relay in high school

Indeed, I began my running “career” as a sprinter and mid-distance runner. This is one reason I think I often have trouble with pacing. But I think any runner can get caught up in the excitement of the beginning of a race.

At the Run for the Door 5k last weekend, I definitely got over-zealous and thought I was super-Vanessa. I was hoping to run an even paced first mile at an average 7:30 min/mile pace, but instead I ran the first half mile at a sub-6 minute/mile pace. Instead of running negative splits as I intended, the first mile was the fastest (I totally wore myself out), the second mile was the slowest (I had to recover from the first mile), and the third mile I luckily had enough left to speed it back up again.

Despite going out a bit fast, I am still pleased with my performance. While I wasn’t aiming for a personal best this time, I was trying to improve upon my most recent race time  and run between 22 and 24 minutes. I did just that, crossing the finish line in 23 minutes. I was pleased to place 1st in my age group and 3rd among females.

On one hand, I regret not sticking to my guns and going out a bit slower, but on the other hand, this gives me hope for my races later in the summer (the Donor Dash and Human Race) where I plan to pace myself a bit better and run a personal best (under 21:18).

But until then, it’s on with the training plan!





Be Me, Be Free

Be Me, Be Free

I am striving to let go and be me. Sometimes I let others influence me, or I dream up an intense pressure and put it on myself. I mentioned this a couple days ago in my post Garden GuiltBut today, I will listen to these words:

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” 
 Bernard M. Baruch

Go be you today… or not. Your choice.



Be Me, Be Free

Though I try to let go and not care what others think, I am a people pleaser to the core. You don’t even have to communicate what you want, I KNOW what you want… OK, I truly have no idea, but I can certainly spend all my time making tons of assumptions and worrying about it, and I do.

For example, my overgrown garden beds and weed-filled yard… I am certain that the millions of dandelion seeds that blow from my yard are the many reasons my neighbors haven’t wanted to get to know me for the past 5 1/2 years. But, instead of actually making real improvements, I occasionally make a half-hearted attempt to weed or prune or… who am I kidding, I know nothing about yard work or gardening. And I hate my yard. Perhaps it’s time to give in and pay someone to fix it up, that way it would actually get done… and in this case it wouldn’t just please my neighbors, it would please me.

2014-05-03 17.07.05

Garden Guilt

A Wish Met and Training Unleashed

Just a few days ago I wrote a post called Can I Get a Day Off? That question was just begging the following cliché statement…

file000874288359Be Careful What You Wish For!

Four hours after hitting the “Publish” button for the blog post welcoming a mental health day, wouldn’t you know it, I got a nasty bout of food poisoning that forced me to have the most terrible kind of sick day. Oh, the irony.

On Monday, between the hours of 2am and 8pm, I spent 99% of  my time in bed or hanging over the toilet. I’ll spare you the projectile, dehydrating, and exhausting details.

chiliNow I will say, I was SO hesitant to eat those chili leftovers from my fridge. I didn’t just fear the original spice, I sensed something was off about this 3 day old chili… should I not be eating 3 day old leftovers??? Yeah, I didn’t think so! Why oh why did I ignore the intuitive voice saying, “Something isn’t right with that chili!” and instead listen to the heedless voice that said, “Oh Vanessa, let’s not be wasteful”!?! Oh, don’t worry, I have since thrown out almost everything from my fridge. And luckily, I didn’t let my overly frugal ways lead anyone else to sickness. But my family certainly suffered the loss of not having me as a resource for the entire day…whoops.

Training Unleashed

Unleashing the speed within

Unleashing the speed within

Being confined to my bed for the day also affected the official start of my training plan in order for me to reach my running goals. Despite my week getting off to an uneasy start, I have hit the ground running once again and I am regaining my strength.

I have been building up my mileage over the past few months and starting this week, I am officially kicking off a training plan I found from Coach Jay Johnson out of Boulder, Colorado.

Here is his 5K running plan and below are some complimentary videos that will help implement the plan:

As I unleash the speed within me once again, let me know if you want to join me on this running adventure by running together, supporting each other virtually with our respective running goals, or _________________ (you fill in the blank).