Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Overtime!

Since I’ve started running, things have gotten a lot better for me.  I’m more clear headed, my memory is improved and I have less pain.  Yes, you read that right, I have less pain.  I’ve had chronic pain for YEARS.  My lower back, mostly, but off and on my left knee has bothered me.  Also, recently, my hip started clicking when I walk.  And while that doesn’t hurt, it’s very annoying.  Since I’ve started running, I’ve had one instance where I had a pinched nerve in my lower back, but that was due to sleeping too much one weekend and had nothing to do with my physical activity.  And I think that my running actually made that pinched nerve more bearable by increasing my blood flow in my entire body and stimulating my nerves in a positive way, so my recovery time from the pinched nerve seemed to me to be shortened from the previous time I had a pinched nerve.
 
Okay, so all that isn’t ENTIRELY true.  I do get some pains, but it’s usually first thing in the morning and after I get moving around with my morning routine all the aches and pains I have when I wake up are gone and not to be found.
 
Yesterday, I got the chance to work a double shift at work.  Hooray!  I need the overtime money if I’m going to buy me a Garmin GPS/heartrate monitor next month!  Which, now that I got this shift of overtime, I will be able to buy for sure.  That just makes my day!  The only down side is that 1) I work 16 hours straight, then 2) I have less than 8 hours from the time I get off work until the time I have to be back at work (so I’m going to be lucky to get 5.5 hours of sleep).  Another thing that made it less fun was that I had to stop at the grocery store and the gas station on the way home from work.  Ugh! 
 
On top of the loss of sleep and the quick turnaround from leaving work to having to be back at work, I had to improvise on my dinner last night.  I was supposed to eat the chicken pesto alfredo with spaghetti squash that I have ready made in my fridge with about 4 cups of steamed broccoli.  However, I wasn’t able to eat that due to not being able to go home last night like I usually do.  So, I went to Jimmy John’s website and looked up the Beach Club’s nutritional info.  Without the mayo, it was about 630 calories and the chips were 150…only a total of about 500 extra calories than I had planned on eating for yesterday, so not too bad.  Besides, I had an excellent run yesterday morning, so I’m feeling pretty good about where I stand as far as hopefully seeing a loss on the scale this Saturday morning. 
 
Speaking of, I can usually tell by the way my body feels whether I’ve gained, lost or stayed the same with my weight.  This week, I feel like I’ve already lost something, so I’m confident that I’ll be alright with a one-time hit of 500 extra calories on a day that I kicked butt at running.
 
Well, I didn’t really “kick butt.”  I actually ran about 25 seconds slower on my overall average pace than I usually do.  I credit that to starting off my first mile at about 25-30 seconds slower than my usual first mile time of around 9 minutes.  My first mile yesterday was at 9:26 minutes.  I just felt a little sluggish during the whole run and had to motivate myself on the last ¾ of a mile of my run.  By “kick butt” I really mean that any run is a great run, even if it’s a “bad” run because I ran and that’s what ultimately matters in the end.  It wasn’t a bad run, it was an okay run, but it was my longest run yet, clocked in at a confirmed 5 miles.  So I feel fantastic about that.  When I run again on Friday, I’ll see if I can widdle that overall average pace down to below the 10 minute mark.  I have nothing but confidence in myself. 
 
I’m starting to get excited about upcoming races.  I found a good 5K to do the weekend before the 10K race happens.  It’s to raise money for an anti-bullying campaign, so it’s going to an excellent cause.  I’m hoping I can get my “Team Sheriff” shirt before the race so I can wear that shirt to race in since I’m sure there will be others from my department running in it. 
 
Anyway, I’m thinking I’m going to stick with the 5 miles three times a week for next week and the week after, then I’ll bump up to 6 miles!  So excited to hit the 6 mile mark!  For my runs this coming Sunday and the following Saturday, I’m heading back to Ladybird Lake trail for what should be just over 5 miles, including some little hills and some stairs.  The stairs, I know, slowed me down last time.  and I know they’ll slow me down the next time I run that route, but I’m okay with that.  I went strong the rest of the route, so I’m optimistic about my times for the whole run. 

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