"Now if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired in the morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired." - George S. Patton

Sunday, August 28, 2011

How Running Has Changed My Life

Long time no blog! I have been M.I.A. for months. I can't even begin to describe how busy the last few months have been for me, but also life changing and unbelievably rewarding. I'll get to all of that later. First I'll catch you all up from where I left off.

My second go at the Rock and Roll Seattle Half Marathon was a success! I also beat last years time by about 15 minutes. I think this years' 40 pound weight loss improved my time a ton, and also not needing to stand in line for the porta potty for 10 minutes like I did in 2010 helped a bit too. The race was very well organized and a ton of fun - just like the year before. I am pretty sure I'm a R&R Seattle "lifer".

So some of you probably read my last blog, in which I explained that I wanted to do something to help a local family who experienced a terrible loss. I hoped to gather two or three hundred runners on a trail, give 'em all a bottle of water, and ask for donations. Holy smokes did things change. I was contacted (via my good ol' blog) by an Oregon-based company called Uberthons. They wanted to help me grow the race. They provided timing equipment, a website, and a ton of know how. After about 60 sleepless nights, a billion tears, and a over a hundred local volunteers, we produced an amazing event. We ended up hosting a race with over 1700 runners, a wonderfully touching kids' race, and a day most of those people will never forget. I feel like we honored Lise and Faith Palmer's life in a big and amazing way. I'm sure the race didn't wipe any pain away from Lise's friends and family who will probably have a hole forever in their hearts, but for one day, thousands of people gathered to do something Lise herself would have been very proud of. Believe what you want, but as for me, I know Lise and Faith were looking down from heaven with smiles on their faces. The Palmers and Macadangdangs seemed to enjoy the day, and in preparation for the race, I had the opportunity to meet honest to goodness great people. The race was such a blessing to me in so many ways, and I wouldn't trade a minute of the planning for anything in the world. It's now going to be an annual event held at Heritage Park in Puyallup, Washington in late August. If you haven't run that course, believe me when I tell you it's completely worth the drive from wherever you are.

When I started writing this blog in January of 2010, I was something of a lost soul. I was two months post birth of my third baby and battling some seriously low self esteem and depression. My marriage was struggling. I couldn't fathom the idea of just sitting at home, cleaning and cooking for the next twenty years, while having nothing special just for myself. When I typed the title of the blog, and decided to document my personal journey out of my personal wreckage, I was nervous. I was afraid that I wouldn't be able to run three miles, let alone 13. I was afraid I would give up on myself and my new found dream of becoming a runner. It was so hard to even imagine feeling a sense of pride in myself, a sense of accomplishment. After a year and a half, I'm a new person. I did it.

Apparently, through organizing the Lise and Faith Memorial Run, I have found my calling. Not only does race directing keep me active, but it enables me to help inspire other people to lace up their running shoes and hit the pavement.

Oprah Winfrey once said, "Running is the greatest metaphor for life. You get out of it what you put into it."

I couldn't agree more.

I'm now working with Uberthons on a series of running events in the Seattle area, and possibly later, all over the country. They are taking a chance on me. Now on a whole new level, I have to prove to myself that I am capable of doing anything I set my mind to.

My husband and children are content and happy, and learning a love for running and activity for themselves. I wake up every morning with a big smile on my face ready to conquer each and every day. I look forward to growing old with my wonderful husband, raising our amazing children, and improving myself as a person. Things are never perfect in life, but with a little bit of faith, I am positive that anyone can do anything they set their mind to. Maybe it all sounds cliche, but I urge you to push yourself in whatever way that inspires you. You never know, it just may change your life.

Thanks to all of you for always being there.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lise and Faith Memorial Run

On May 27th, 2011 one family's life would be turned upside down forever. While jogging on her vacation in Lake Chelan, 8 months pregnant Lise Palmer was struck and killed my a man who fell asleep at the wheel. She leaves behind her two sons (ages 4 and 2) and her loving husband. She was an incredible woman, who loved running and fitness of any kind. Her passing is an extraordinary loss to her family and community.

We can't bring Lise back, or heal the wounds of her family, but we can do something. Along with the gentlemen of Uberthons I am organizing a local 1k, 5k, and 10k walk/run in Lise and unborn baby Faith's honor. The money raised from the race will go to their family, and allow Lise's husband the much needed time away from work to focus on putting the pieces of his family's life back together.

The race is already generating sponsors and help and should actually turn out to be a beautiful and fun celebration, and will also raise awareness for drivers and pedestrians alike.

The race will take place on either July 30th, 2011 or August 20th, 2011, depending on what works best for the family. The race will also include a brand new and amazing timing chip system. More final details will be posted soon.

I am asking you now, to please register, donate, or volunteer for this race. If you have any questions, please don't hesistate to email me directly. Below I am including a link to the website that you can register on, and also to the race's facebook page.

Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart, for taking the time to read Lise's story, help her family, and celebrate two lives lost far too soon.




Monday, June 6, 2011

How to Organize a Race ... and Other Topics

Well howdy, folks. I'm still running... once or twice a week. Don't you worry about me. Even though I'm missing a lot of conditioning runs lately, I don't seem to be struggling very much with my Sunday long runs so I'm feeling fairly confident that I will actually finish the Rock and Roll Half Marathon in a few weeks. Have you ever noticed how much harder it is to get outside and run in the summer time, when there are so many books to sit in the sun and read, and so much beer to drink instead? It's becoming a problem for me.

There really aren't many fantastic stories of the running genre for me to share with you all, so I think I'll ask a question!

The family of a very close friend of mine experienced a ridiculous tragedy last week and I've been thinking of ways to help. I'd like to organize an informal 5k to raise money for them. No shirts, no medals, just good people gathering to support people in more emotional pain than most of us will ever experience in our lives. I was thinking about doing it on a trail (maybe Orting) and asking all of the runners to donate.

Here is where this situation gets tricky. I have no idea how to organize something like this. Do any of you have any advice as far as steps I would need to follow, the best and safest way to collect the money, or perhaps know someone that would be willing to donate to the race?

Am I asking too many questions?

Anyway, if any of you can help me out, it would honestly mean the world to me. My email address is KristinaMoats@hotmail.com.

Thanks! See ya on the sidewalks!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Short Races are Fun too!

Hey everyone! Believe it or not this blog is not to tell you that I have been failing in my training, or even slacking off. I have kept to my half-marathon training schedule and should be rocking and rolling in Seattle on June 25th! It's very exciting, but for some reason it seemed a little bit less tedious to train last year. Maybe because running was so new to me and now I'm some kind of one-half-marathon veteran? Perhaps as Dr.Phil would say, "This aint my first Rodeo". Either way, I'm sure I'll get that exciting running bug soon.

I have been following a strict diet and doing a ton of strength and cross-training and have lost 22 pounds since February. This has cut my miles down to about 10 minutes or so. If you know me - the former slowest runner in history - you would be amazed. It's like my body wont LET me run really slowly anymore. I ran 6 miles the other day in a just a little over an hour. Go me!

On another note, I think we should all reflect on how fun short races are! 5ks, 10ks, etc. They are a great opportunity to build your speed, improve your time, make new friends, and hang yet another race shirt in your closet. Might I suggest a fantastic race in my area?

City Blast 5k/10k is a race put on by Puyallup Foursquare Church on July 4th, 2011. Can you think of a better day to take on an easy-breezy and fun race than on the Fourth of July? I know! Me neither! There are a ton of cool activities after the race, not to mention it gives you a reason to check out beautiful little Puyallup (for something other than that thing that clogs up traffic for two weeks in September). The proceeds benefit the Strong Kids Campaign of the YMCA. Don't want to run but love to hear about other folks running? Well, help to sponsor the gathering! I will be running in the race and I hope I will see you there!

I promise to get better about updating the blog.... and you folks get better about letting me know what is going on on YOUR race schedule!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sometimes Life Really Does Get in the Way of Running....

Gracious. I am a bad, bad blogger. You see, I have all these small people constantly running around me asking for things and screaming. Then, there is this bigger person who wants meals cooked when he comes home from work and even asks me to keep our house sanitary. These crazy people have been keeping me from the beautiful, blog-reading community. I apologize and will have a talk with them (especially that little one who is always asking for milk) very soon.

So as you all know I registered to run the Rock and Roll Seattle Marathon in June. Not the half - the full. I have now decided to run the half - not the full. Why? I wont lie to you guys... my right leg fell off. I'm not sure what happened.. probably all of those 20 mile training runs. Anyway, my left leg is still perfectly intact so I can bust out the half-marathon on June 25th, don't worry.

Ok, that wasn't nice. I mean no disrespect to anyone with only one leg. I'm sure there are quite a few people that have finished a full marathon with one leg - yet both of my legs are still alive and kicking, and I'm just not ready.

I simply don't have the time for the long training runs. I really don't. I have been beating myself up about it so much and I really think for my own sanity, and for the sake of my family needing clean underwear and food in the refrigerator, I am raising my white flag. Maybe next year, eh?

On another (less pitiful) note, I am doing that P90x I have heard so much about. I have said before, I know I could run so much faster if I weren't a miniature cow and if I had stronger muscles in my core. I'll tell you something, blog-reader, it's working. In three weeks I have lost 11 lbs and cut a full minute off of my usual mile. The other day I ran 4 miles in about 40 minutes. That is wild for me. I used to be proud of a 12 minute mile. So I'm going to keep going with that and the half-marathon training schedule and keep everyone posted.

What are you all up to? What races do you have coming up? Do you think because I decided not to run the full marathon in June I am a loser and a quitter?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Latest on my Training and Such

Well hello there. Sorry it has taken me so long to update but I was really sick for a while and some other issues have come into play. I think I complained to you all earlier about my super tight calf muscle. I thought it was okay after I rested for over a week with the ol' bronchitis, but it's back. This is no good.

Let me back-track a bit. The last time I wrote I think I was asking for advice regarding whether or not I should have gone ahead and run the St.Patty's Day Run in Tacoma. Although every piece of advice I recieved was discouraging me from going ahead with the race, the rebel in me made me do it anyway. It actually turned out okay. I didn't get any more sick than I already was, and beat last year's time by over a minute. I did however stay sick for about a week or so after the race so I don't think running improved my health at all. So that was that.

I have tried to go running 4 or 5 times since then and every time I have another stinking issue that makes me dread the running. Usually it's my calves tightening up (and yes I stretch a ton) or my body is just super exhausted. I am probably still a little bit sick, but I also lost a lot of conditioning. UGH. We are what, 15 weeks from the Rock and Roll Marathon? My epic, first, life-changing marathon?

On to other things... for cross-training and to improve my strength, I have been doing that P90X every morning, and following it's nutrition plan. This is more my husband's idea because he wants to get "ripped" but I figure it's good bonding time and will help me shed some unwanted pounds, hopefully improving my running performance. It's really hard and making me really grouchy, but it isn't always easy to be a sexy beast, ya know? Yeah.. I don't either.

So I figure I'm gonna try to follow my training schedule this week and really force myself to get the miles in. This will include a 10 mile run on Sunday. If I can't get caught up by next week, I may have to change my registration to the half-marathon. And I will be sad.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Running with Bronchitis

Yeah. Bronchitis now. I haven't been updating my blog because I have been sick with a severe case of acute bronchitis. I went to the doctor on Tuesday night where I was told to do nothing but rest. Naturally I asked her if I was compliant with this so-called "resting", if I might be able to run in my 5k that is scheduled for this coming Saturday. I took her exaggerated laughter as a no. Oh, and the fact that she said "honey, if you tried you would get worse.. and you probably wouldn't make it to the finish line."

Anyhoo, I've done this "resting". I haven't run all week. I'm still coughing and can't breath as well as I would like to...and the race is tomorrow. The rebel in me wants to prove that darned doctor wrong, but what if she is right and I do get worse and miss out on even more marathon training? I'm considering walking the measley 3 miles.

Ya know, I'm just a sucker for a finish line. What do you all think?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Leg Injuries Get In the Way

I'm an eternal optimist. It's what I do. I see the glass as half full, I see a steep hill as an opportunity to run down instead of up, and I refuse to believe whatever is wrong with my left calf muscle is something serious. Due to my lack of medical insurance, I guess we will never know. I do know that my last three or four runs were really painful. My last run on Monday, a six-miler, has done quite a number.

So what is wrong? My calves have been cramping up and swelling pretty bad as soon as the ASICS hit the pavement, but it usually goes away after the first mile or two. Now my left one is sort of stuck swollen and it feels like someone is inside my leg with a tiny drill going up and down the length of my calf, if that makes sense. I walk like an 80 year old woman recovering from a shark attack... or arthritis or something.

I took Tuesday and Wednesday off and it's getting a little bit better. A very little bit. So what do you guy think I should do? Power through it? Take a week off? Permanently sew an ice bag to my leg? Quit running and pursue my even bigger dreams of becoming the world's fattest woman?

I'm scheduled for a seven mile run this coming Sunday. I am also scheduled for a 5k race the following Sunday. I'm no quitter.

So basically I'm asking, what the crap am I gonna do? Are there any sports medicine doctors out there reading this that think I'm just precious enough to see/fix me for free? Anyone know of a good starter plan for someone looking to be sedentary and gain like 500 lbs?


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My Full Marathon Training Schedule

Just in case any of you folks were interested in joining in the on the fun, or even if you wanted to keep track of all of my running that you can be laughing at, I took the liberty of posting my training schedule. We are in week 1 currently. Thanks, Hal Higdon!

Week Mon Tue Wed Thur Fri Sat Sun

1 rest 3 m run 3 m run 3 m run rest 6 cross

2 rest 3 m run 3 m run 3 m run rest 7 cross

3 rest 3 m run 4 m run 3 m run rest 5 cross

4 rest 3 m run 4 m run 3 m run rest 9 cross

5 rest 3 m run 5 m run 3 m run rest 10 cross

6 rest 3 m run 5 m run 3 m run rest 7 cross

7 rest 3 m run 6 m run 3 m run rest 12 cross

8 rest 3 m run 6 m run 3 m run rest 13 cross

9 rest 3 m run 7 m run 4 m run rest 10 cross

10 rest 3 m run 7 m run 4 m run rest 15 cross

11 rest 4 m run 8 m run 4 m run rest 16 cross

12 rest 4 m run 8 m run 5 m run rest 12 cross

13 rest 4 m run 9 m run 5 m run rest 18 cross

14 rest 5 m run 9 m run 5 m run rest 14 cross

15 rest 5 m run 10 m run5 m run rest 20 cross

16 rest 5 m run 8 m run 4 m run rest 12 cross

17 rest 4 m run 6 m run 3 m run rest 8 cross

18 rest 3 m run 4 m run 2 m run rest rest race

I realize this might be kind of hard to read or follow. That makes it all the more fun! :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Beginning of Marathon Training

Oh Dear Lord. 26.2 miles. Twenty-six point two. Miles.

I can do this, right? Well it is officially 18 weeks until my big day. Technically my Hal Higdon training schedule doesn't require me to do any running until Tuesday this week, but I thought I might get a jump on things yesterday. Can we say disaster? I ran two miles. Just the two. I bought new running shoes and it was my first time breaking them in, so I blame ASICS for my poor performance mostly. They should make pre-worn-in shoes. I also blame cottage cheese and Triscuit crackers for my 15 pound weight gain that seems to be slowing me down quite a bit. Furthermore, I blame polution, the city of Puyallup (for hilly sidewalks), and oh.. just for the heck of it, I blame you. The fact that I was huffing and puffing after running half of a mile couldn't possibly be due to the fact that I've been running about once a week (on average) for the last two months.

Anyhoo, I'll take my terrible run yesterday with a grain of salt and hit 'er hard again this evening. I mean, I have to be (at least) able to hit the 5k mark without feeling like I need a stretcher, right? Maybe it was just a bad day.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Training Myself to Cross-Train

Well, I will start off by saying I have gained roughly twelve pounds back since last June when I hit my peak of 55 pounds lost. No big deal. I am only a few short weeks away from the beginning of my full-marathon training so I'm sure it will come back off. In preparation for the training, and to skim off a few extra pounds before it starts, I have been trying to find a good cross-training exercise I can stick too, or at least enjoy doing a few times a week.

I think I should remind you that I am a very busy mother of three little kids, and also a stay-at-home maid/teacher/cook/referee/girl scout troop leader/love machine...or mom. Getting to the gym is about as realistic for me as auditioning for America's Next Top Model. Therefore, I turn to a little thing I like to call Exercise TV on On Demand. I'm sure most of you are familiar. It has just about every workout you could ever hope for at just a click of a button. I have been experimenting with all kinds of fun stuff, and making myself look extremely sophisticated while doing it.

Cardioke. Oh yes, it is just as fun and ridiculous as it sounds. It is hosted by Billy Blanks'(the creator of Tae Bo and renowned neon spandex enthusiast)son. You dance around and move your body in a somewhat suggestive-hip-thrusting manor, and you are instructed to sing the lyrics to the songs playing as they appear on the screen. I was having a blast and belting out "Let's get it started" by the Black Eyed Peas. But then I began to feel a little bit uncomfortable at the end of the video, when Mr.Blank's wife performed a ballad she wrote for the fans. My medium-intensity bliss was pulled to a screeching halt when it turned into a sappy, overly-emotional musical. Emo + Cross-training = not for this lady.

On to belly dancing. And belly dancing it was. This video was instructed by a woman whose "belly" was rock-solid and when she gave instruction to push my belly out as far as I could, she said it like it would really be a difficult thing to do. She kept telling me to embrace my "curves" and to look down and admire my own gorgeous body. I have given birth to three children and have fluctuated between the same 70 lbs for eight years. My gorgeous curves resemble something out of a horror movie, and my beautiful belly looks like a road map. She kept telling me to act and feel sexy, but I couldn't help laughing hysterically at all of my body parts that were shaking when they weren't supposed to. I appreciate what this broad was trying to do, but I think to keep any shred of the self-esteem I have left inside, I should find another core-toning work out, no?

So alas, I am left with yoga. I have been doing this off and on for about a year, and it really helps with my flexibility and balance. I am still on a hunt to find another fun workout I can do in addition to yoga.

Any suggestions?