Tuesday, May 3, 2011

At Least I'll Be All Pimped Out for my Half Marathon...

i dont know why im doing this to myself again. after last year's failed attempt to train for the Chicago Half Marathon, i vowed never again to attempt this whole running thing... i didnt enjoy it, i was in unnecessary pain and i am NOT a natural runner. how people can just pick up and run five miles after not having run in months is beyond any remote realm of understanding.

but then i added it to my bucket list (like how im tying together my blog posts here...?). and well, hello. if it's on the bucket list, it MUST get done. right? right. therefore, i made a resolute decision to attempt this yet again... but i am proud to say that i have learned from my mistakes and am approaching this year's half marathon training with enhanced positivity and enhanced attention to my physical limitations.

so last year, when i started training, i was happy enough to have gotten up to about 6.75 miles before flat-out quitting. but i was in some SERIOUS pain... my wide feet's pinky toes were encountering some SERIOUS blistering- blistering that was unusual for the mileage i was running, apparently (advice c/o some runner friends that i had, not medical professionals). soo, learning from my mistakes and all that... i decided to really take that into consideration before starting some intensive training...

so, off to Fleet Feet i went. i'd heard amazing things about how Fleet Feet will fit your feet to shoes that meet your needs (ie: based on running stance, etc.) and so i figured i might as well give it a shot...

and OMG, Fleet Feet SO DOES NOT FAIL TO IMPRESS!! i felt so well-EDUCATED after getting fitted for some shoes. for instance, did you know that you're supposed to go a shoe size or two bigger than your normal size because your feet expand when they are warm (ie: when you are running extensively)?? call me ignorant, but this was like the biggest revelation EVER!

not only that, but the Fleet Feet lady totally watched me run on a treadmill and was able to determine "how" my feet were hitting the ground, because i guess a lot of people run more on the insides or outsides of their feet (pronation or something?)... thankfully, i was pretty "neutral" according to her.

with all this scientific examination, the Fleet Feet lady brought out three different types of shoes, all with wider tips, thanks to my unnecessary pinky toe blistering experience... after a few more test runs, i finally settled on some Pumas... i guess it helps that i have a soft spot in my heart for Pumas anyway, but whatever.

unfortunately, Pumas come in some pretty outrageous colors (i know, i know, i shouldn't be seriously considering colors when determining "proper" running shoes)... and sadly, i had a choice between a dark purple or a hot pink. and... please, if you really think im going for hot pink, you are so mistaken it's not even funny. so check out my snazzy new purple shoes!! im a little embarassed by how outrageously purple they are but oh well. all in the name of medical necessity, i guess.

alright, so shoes... done. i was all set to march on outta Fleet Feet with my purchase in hand... but then, the Fleet Feet lady started talking about how my feet could probably use a little more support c/o some inserts that they can fit in the shoe... and, well, i forget all her selling points but, long story short... well, it's all in the name of medical necessity right? the last thing i want is to dislocate/sprain my knee AGAIN this year , so i went ahead and totally added these ridiculous neon green inserts to my little purchase pile.

again... i was all proud of my purchases, totally experiencing renewed motivation for my half marathon training... when the Fleet Feet lady totally commented on how the socks i was wearing (cotton socks) are so not good for running feet because they'll absorb sweat and cause blistering (i mean, im telling you- total education session for me!) so... well, okay, so i tacked on a couple of pairs of new non-cotton running socks.

well, WHAT? i dont know! any/all of these purchases could be the maker or breaker for completing my half marathon! hello! and this year, nothing is getting in my way... short of my knee blowing out again...

which leads me to yet another instance of Fleet Feet's amazingness... did you KNOW that every first monday of the month, they have a free physical examination to check out any potential concerns you may have?? and talk about perfect TIMING... you better believe i totally signed myself on up for my free exam last night! at this point... why not, really?

and huzzah!! i got the seal of approval from this physiologist (or whatever they are)! her only advice was that if it starts hurting, just go a little easy on it... which i guess could be construed as common sense but whatever, better safe than sorry at this point.

so, with renewed comfort and appreciation for the art of running... i totes started my half marathon training this week! hip hip hooray! i love training plans that start with a day of "rest"... hahahaha. my kinda PLAN, baby!

but that was yesterday. TODAY, i totally ran for the first time in like seven months and ran 1.5 miles without TOO much difficulty... granted it was so embarassingly slow im not even going to go into the details but STILL. 1.5 miles!! i was pumped!! (and yes, don't laugh but you saw right... i totally have to start with a 5K training plan since the half marathon training plans assumes you can run 3 miles "comfortably"... and i don't think "comfortably" equates to "experiencing heart palpitations and shortness of breath".)

i know, i know... but small victories, right? rome wasn't built in a day and all that, after all...

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