Spring Break

Intention: Run 3-4x while on vacation

Reality: 1 and 1/2… the half was due to a run cut short (more about that later)

Last week, we soaked in the sun and enjoyed time with family during the kids’ spring break.  Our family of 4 joined my brother’s family of 5 as well as my youngest brother and Mom for a reunion in St. Petersburg, FL.  Being able to rent a house to accommodate all of us was a big plus since my oldest daughter has looked forward to this week of spending time with her cousin the same age as her.  At night, they would close the door in our bedroom so they could be alone in their own world of pretend play.  Such priceless moments.

6 days – I had it planned in my head that I can probably manage 3, even 4 days of running but even with the best intentions, I found reasons, ok excuses to abandon my plan.

Monday was a long travel day, up at 4:15am and by the time we got settled in to our hotel room, it was time for bed.

Tuesday, I woke up exhausted!  Without a pack and play for my toddler at the hotel we stayed in the first night, she was up until who knows what time playing in bed.  No way I was going to push myself to run.

Wednesday, finally up at 7am while the rest of the family still in deep slumber, I quietly made my way out the door towards a neighborhood overlooking the Bayou Grande, a body of water by the Weedon Island State Preserve.  Viewing the map, it didn’t seem very far but the time I got there, I was already 2.5mi out.  Briefly, I enjoyed the view and caught a sight of several large fish swimming around – none I can identify and no they were not sharks.

Bayou Grande with Weedon Island across the water

Thursday, I woke early again but a little fatigued.  3 miles was the goal and close to the halfway point, I unexpectedly tripped and fell 😦 In my mind, it happened in slow motion where I saw my body trying to maintain its balance but it was too late.  I extended my arms to save my face and head from hitting the ground.  The worst of my injury was bloody torn skin on my right hand and a sore wrist.  Luckily, my legs still functioned and didn’t need a ride home.

Who said running is not a dangerous sport?

Friday, another day off.  We had a busy day ahead of us and our plan was to leave as soon as everyone was ready to go.  I didn’t plan to wake up any earlier since I was not going to run before sunrise – not in an unfamiliar area.

Saturday, last day of our trip with a late flight home.  I wanted to run in the morning but we had to pack and ensure the house was in an acceptable condition prior to our checkout.

I’ve never been good with keeping up my mileage during vacation.  I know it has to be done first thing in the morning.  And when we are elsewhere besides our home, a decent night sleep is nonexistent especially with our kiddos in the same room. So when the choice of sleeping in or being awake to go for a run, SLEEP usually conquers. Yet, I continue to pack my running gear because I know I can find time if I truly want to go for a run (No excuses, right!?)

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Sick Day

Me:  I’m not feeling very well today so I think it would be best if I take the day off.

My boss(es):  If you take the day off, who would feed us, dress us, play with us….basically take care of everything we need and want!?…

Me:  Guess you’re saying that’s a “No”?

This was a conversation I had in my head on Friday morning when I woke up with a sore throat, a terrible cough and an aching body.  I wanted to stay under the covers but my human alarm clock was wailing too loudly for me to simply ignore.  No preschool for my 4yr old either so I had both girls to entertain but lacked the strength or motivation. My solution was to allow them to watch TV for as long as it pleased them but after only a few shows, they were itching to get out of the house. I binged on hot tea with honey to soothe my aching throat while hoping its caffeine content was strong enough to energize me through a few hours of activity at the Children’s Museum.

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The girls are content and happy to be out of the house!

Relief finally arrived when my hubby came home early and I crawled back under the sheets for a couple of hours. Finally the weekend was here.

I try to avoid OTC medications if at all possible which started when I was pregnant and then when I was nursing. So I’ve resorted to a few natural remedies to attempt to treat my cough and chest congestion.

-Honey (mixed with tea) – it’s a well known cough suppressant recommended by the pediatrician to give to my 4yr old when she had a terrible coughing fit.

-Turmeric (mixed with tea) – due to it’s anti-inflammatory properties; it’s a popular spice to use not just in the treatment of coughs but many other ailments.

-And my favorite ginger in hot tea.  Reminded me of a drink in the Philippines called “Salabat”.  Another herb known for its many therapeutic benefits.

Sunday rolled in and I was starting to feel better.  I suggested to my husband to take the kids to the Y while I stay home to do some chores I’ve put off for some time.  He wanted to take them to Solana beach instead.  I could have said “Yes what a great idea” and would have had several hours to get work done around the house and maybe even time to nap, but the thought of hanging out with my family on the beach seemed to me a more desirable choice.  So off we went and had a wonderful time strolling on the beach despite the overcast windy weather.  Even Eyva pointed out, “This was a fun adventure!”  Being on this excursion with my family was by far the best natural remedy of all.  It may not have cleared my chest congestion, but it definitely warmed my soul.

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9 weeks later…

Training plan derailed.  Here I am with only 9 weeks to go building my mileage cautiously so I can stay healthy and make it to the start line.  It has been a challenge maintaining my mileage with the number of hurdles I encountered the past 9 weeks:

1) foot pain/tight hamstring which forced me to take a week off (week 3 of training)

2) travel to SC due to an unexpected circumstance involving my brother (Still was in recovery but squeezed in several miles to relieve stress – week 4)

3) scheduled vacation to Disneyworld (I had every intention to run but never found the time and energy.  We visited all 4 theme parks in a week which ended to be a very exhausting experience – week 5)

Weeks 6-10, I finally started to consistently increase mileage without experiencing any setbacks. I decided to participate in an 8 mi race and a half marathon as part of my long training runs on the weekends (weeks 7 and 9). It helped me with pacing as well as to assess my goal finish time for the marathon. If I remain injury-free, I have confidence with a 3:55 finish approx an 8:58/mi pace. I know I shouldn’t even worry about time and need to just enjoy the NY marathon experience but having a goal helps me stay focused especially while I’m training and I have a ‘million’ other things on my plate.

So 9 weeks of training left… 6 weeks to build up to two 20-milers and taper the final 3. I never had the chance to do any tempo runs but I continue to train with SDTC on Tuesdays for hills and intervals. The rest of the week will consist of easy running, cross training and rest. Crossing my fingers for staying pain-free!

On a good note, my 4 yr old ran her first race a few weeks ago. I asked her if she wanted to run one after I finished running my race and she was very excited to do it. It was a 1K, a bit further distance for her to actually run so she did a sprint at the start, then wanted to be carried – told her she won’t get a medal for being carried so she walked, then jogged, and finally sprinted to the finish line when she saw a crowd of people cheering for her. Seeing her face lit up when she heard the cheers and applause of the crowd as she crossed the finish line was definitely priceless. I was one proud mama:)

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Running towards the finish line
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One proud mama