Monday, December 5, 2011

Fitness Inspiration with Stefanie ....

Brrr! I think winter has officially arrived here in Texas!  My next guest blogger is Stefanie who is a marathon runner and can run in this type of weather. Go girl! I met Stefanie back in 2010 at one of our local gym's group exercise classes.  She has been my "coach" in running.  I too did not like/enjoy running and she has been such an inspiration to me to tackle this awesome exercise. Please welcome my good friend, Stefanie ....

April asked me to share my blog about running, so I agreed to do so because my story starts out with me not ever being a runner.  I played tennis growing up and never enjoyed running.  My husband was a runner and ever since we got married, 10 years ago, I wanted to complete a marathon.  For years, I kept putting off starting to learn how to run.  I would run every once in a while, but did not like it one bit. I thought it was too hard, my feet hurt, my side hurts from breathing, etc.....
 
So this is how it all began.  After my daughter was born, October 30, 
2008, I went to Luke's Locker and got fitted for proper runner shoes.  
It made a world of difference.  Running was not so hard like I thought
it was.  I was actually enjoying it.  At first, I was using it as a tool 
to lose my baby weight I had gained.  I continued running short distance.  
I thought about signing up for marathon training in 2008, but I was 
too scared.  There was so much to learn about how to run a marathon, 
the distance runs, hydration, racing, shoes etc.  I was nervous about 
running a marathon because I have never ran long distance and was not 
a runner prior.  So, I put off my goal.  I then decided, June of 2009, to 
go ahead and sign up for the training with Luke's Locker because if I 
didn't do it, I probably would always chicken out.  I remember them 
asking if I have ever done any races prior and I said,  "No.”  They 
thought maybe I should start with a smaller race, but I said, "No, my 
goal is a marathon and this is what I want to do.”  The training 
started with a 3 mile evaluation run to put you in your pace group.  
For 6 months, we trained and ran anywhere between 3 miles to 22 
miles.  13 miles was our easy days and 13 miles now is still my 
favorite distance to run.  It is not too short, but not too far.  My 
mind for mileage is so different now.  My first race EVER was Tour 
De Fluer 20k during our training and then my first half was DRC 1/2 with 
a finish time of 1:59.  Now I have run several different distance 
races.   I am running White Rock Half and hope to PR with a finish 
time of 1:45 or better.  I have been sick this week, so hope to still 
accomplish that.  If I don't, I know I am still a runner that has 
accomplished quite a bit in 2+ year period.  I have learned so many 
things about marathon training, distance running, speed work on how to 
become faster, hydration, shoes, eating, and the list goes on and on.
 
One year ago December 4th, 2010 I completed my first marathon in 4:10.  
This will not be my last one either!
 
So, if you ever think you can't do something, think again because 
anything is possible.  If you put your mind to it and are determined 
to do it, YOU will succeed.  It will take lots of efforts and there 
will be times when you don't feel like doing it, but the end result is 
bigger and exciting.  Just remember the end result!!!!!   There were 
many times in races that my legs hurt and I was tired, but I envision 
the finish line, the crowd, and my family at the end. Those envisions 
helped me push through the pain.   There were even numerous times during 
training that I did not want to wake up and run in the early morning.  
I knew my goal was 26.2 miles, so the end result was bigger than the 
way I felt that day.  I think you can take this and apply it to 
anything in life that you want to accomplish.
 
Happy Running! :)
 
Stefanie

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