1 year plan: 18 minute miles to a Marathon.

Fall(ish) color on the way to the beach

This time last year I had just finished running the Richmond half-marathon after half way committing myself to the training plan. I squeaked by with a PR by mere seconds. Although the PR wasn’t huge, it felt huge to me. The Richmond half course is vastly different from the Shamrock half and the Rock n Roll half based on one big item: HILLS. When you live, train, and run in FLAT Virginia Beach, running a race on a hilly course has its challenges.

Each fall weekend that passes, I hear about more people running marathons. More people are setting new PRs. My want to cross the finish line of a full marathon (not just train for one! Ugh! Stress fracture!) is HUGE. I’m ready to start running again. I’m ready to train and set new standards for my post-pregnant body. I have thought a lot about my race schedule for 2012. You all have had to read about it a lot too. The biggest question mark has been what marathon should I run next year? I just want to run one marathon in 2012. I want it to be a good one.

I’ve mentioned Chicago. Friends have mentioned New York. I’ve thought about Atlanta and Richmond. There is even a full marathon in the outer banks in November.

Perfect time of year to Run

As I read over status updates on Facebook this weekend, I realized that this weekend was the inaugural half-marathon in Norfolk, Virginia. Yes! I wish I had been half-marathon ready so I could have run it too. I spent a good chunk of my 20s living in Norfolk. It sure would be fun to run through the city streets. As I glanced over the race’s website, I discovered that the City of Norfolk has pledged to support this race for the next five years. The website also says that next year it will host a FULL marathon.

If, in fact, they do have a full marathon next year…..I think this is going to be my race! It’s close to home – 15 minutes away. I won’t have to juggle baby sleeping schedules, keeping an 8-year-old entertained, and making sure my husband isn’t overwhelmed. I can focus on running and nothing more. Although a family vacation to Chicago or Atlanta would be great, it might be stressful to cram in my first marathon.  I’d much rather take a family vacation (without running a race) and run a full marathon (without the stress of family vacationing) in 2012. And if that Marathon doesn’t happen, I’ll be heading to Richmond to run again!

Last November, I was PRing in Richmond. This November I’m creeping up on a very different finish line. 6 more weeks until my due date. Since we have been lucky enough to enjoy 70 degree days this November, it has been very tempting to be outside.

Yesterday I meet my mom for a walk. We drove towards the oceanfront, parked at the Aquarium, and walked the 1 mile to the boardwalk up and over the Rudee Inlet Bridge. From there we headed to 2nd street so I could use the bathroom and back to the pier. All in all, the entire walk was 4.11 miles.

Rudee Inlet

It was my first time in running shoes since the Wicked 10k two weeks ago. Oops. The entire time we were walking at snail’s pace (which felt fast to me), I kept thinking “How in the world did I run two weeks ago?”  There wasn’t a bone, a muscle, or a portion of my brain that felt like jogging yesterday. My 18 minute mile felt hard. In fact, my legs are little sore today.  I know I feel like my stomach is growing A LOT these past two weeks, but it really must be growing. I don’t think it helps that it is all compacted in the front of my torso either. For those of you who are pregnant and you wish you were “all belly” ….TRUST ME….it has its disadvantages. I’d give anything to be carrying this baby a little bit wider than I currently am just so I could be more comfortable. I feel like my belly needs a kick stand 🙂

Seriously! I'm supposed to get even bigger?

Running or walking, it felt great to be moving yesterday. I’m more than happy with four 18 minute miles (including photo stops and potty breaks!). Maybe I’ll have the urge to run again this week. Maybe I won’t. I just want to keep moving until Maute Moo makes his appearance at the end of the year.

2011 Veteran’s Day Weekend – 18 minute mile

2012 Veteran’s Day Weekend – Marathon Finish Line

Mark you calendar……I want it; therefore, I will make it happen!

Thanks for strolling along with me Mom!!!
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