I have been really stressing about this day because I knew once it came – I’d be in countdown mode to this really crazy race. Sometimes I feel like its impossible but wasn’t it Walt Disney himself that said – “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible” – we’ll see about fun when I am running miles in 17 but I’ll take your word for it now. I’ve been toying with buying a treadmill for months. I’ve pretty much decided on the Landice L7 cardio training but every time I measure out a spot for it in the house – I think it isn’t a good spot. I had suspended my gym membership last year after not feeling great – but decided that was the easiest way to have treadmill access and maybe take a class or two. I reactivated it and added Taylor on so he could have the same benefit during his training. The last thing I want is for us to hit race weekend and be unprepared. All my friends will tell you I’m not a morning person. As a matter of a fact – I get up around 830 most days – and in Virginia, the heat in the summer can be quite much to run in add on top of that that I have a photosensitivity with my Lupus I can actually get a lupus flare if I have too much sun. I always wear sunscreen and a hat but sometimes a treadmill is just easier.
Other benefits of running on a treadmill is trying to push a pace. Looking at my training this year so far when I run I am at all different speeds. I’m not very consistent in my running. It’s probably related to a good song on the radio or a jolt of endorphins but it can wear me out early. When I run on a treadmill – I know what my walk speed is, and what my run speed is and there you go. The only time I waiver is when I am adding in sprints and may add speed to increase my VO2 Max. Over time it kinda trains my legs to be more consistent on my road runs. I saw this when I trained for the Wine and Dine Half. My walk and run both improved was more consistent and my time was better.
So here I am this morning – at ACAC (my local gym) at 10:25 for a 10:30 class and I walk into class with a familiar feeling. Body flow works for me. I stretch, there is music and a feeling of release in every pose. My body unwinds and so do I. The class is made up of multiple parts focusing on various body parts or capabilities. There are elements of Tai Chi, Yoga, Pilates and meditation all within this class. It was a great way to kick off my training and put me in the right mood to get on the treadmill.
I got on the treadmill and the guy to my left was walking and moaning – not sure what that was about – but this is why I have headphones on at the gym. Listening to Patricia Cornwell’s Ripper, The secret life of Walter Sickert I set my Garmin 920xt to run indoor, chose a 1-1 interval and started off. Running a 30/30 on this treadmill wasn’t easy. It didn’t adjust after I had changed the preset run/incline time like when I had come almost a year ago – must be a different model so I had to change it manually every 30 seconds. As I was doing that – I definitely did not pay attention to my watch which kept pausing for some reason, nor my heart rate which was pretty high today. I felt great after my run and foam rolled and stretched for about 20 min post run.
As today was the first day of the challenge schedule I also decided to launch my fundraiser for the Lupus Foundation of America. I figured I’m really putting myself out there for this run – I’m running a very challenging set of races and that maybe along the way I can encourage everyone to contribute. I’ve raised money for the Lupus foundation before, and feel passionate that we need research funding. For example, the medication I take for Lupus – Benlysta – was the first new lupus medication in 50 years. I’ve tried all the medication for lupus except chemo (thankfully) and can only tolerate one other kind and in small doses. Higher doses have caused me to have bimodal ocular migraines where I lose sight in both eyes for up to 15 ish min at a time. Needless to say – If I ever need a different medication – the choices are slim. I am not the only one in this boat. We need options – solutions to help manage this disease and maybe even in the future a cure. I participated this year in the 23 and me Lupus study hoping that they could uncover more information that would help the medical community and further the study of Lupus. That was just a little thing, like my fundraiser, but all these things together may someday change things for me and millions of others battling this disease.
The next six months are not going to be easy. I am going to think we were crazy for signing up, I’m going to doubt that I can finish, I’m going to get sick, have flares, experience severe joint pain and exhaustion, but I’m going to keep going and get stronger and hopefully finish Day 4 strong having completed 48.6 miles in 4 days with my son by my side and my husband and youngest waiting at the finish line. I can see it – and that will bring me through. I hope you can help cheer me on along the way – support, encouragement, and donations are really helpful when things get tough. I appreciate everyone’s support thus far and am looking forward to what is to come!
Thanks again for your support,