So after the birth of my first child, Keira, there were plenty of easy excuses to get out of shape…no sleep, changing diapers, burping Keira, etc. In fact, in 2009, I did many half marathons and also my 1st – the fabulous Portland Marathon. In 2010, I switched up gears and did my 1st Olympic Triathlon and really enjoyed that too. At the end of 2010, Loren and I, desperate to keep in shape, and both needing motivation decided to embark on a fitness challenge.
There were 3 components to it: (1) 5K time, (2) Inches around the belly button measurement, and (3) % of fat as measured on my scale. At that time, I was in pretty good cardio shape and felt that winning the 2010 challenge would be very difficult since it is measured on averaged percentage improvement. I just didn’t think I could cut more time off of my 5K. The loser bought dinner for the other plus their spouse. So Loren won in 2010, and we went to a delightful meal at Crush (one of our favorite restaurants).
This year, we embarked on another one right around my bday (10/20) until tomorrow 11/27. With very little running, no tris, I felt that I needed this spark to get back in shape. This time the challenge was similar yet slightly different. We ran a 10K and then extrapolated what that would equate to for a half marathon. Then we measured inches around the belly button plus weight (since we didn’t think my % fat on my scale was accurate enough).
Right after my bday, I went on my 1st cruise with my wife, Keira, and her family out of Long Beach. And yes, that did not help with my fitness. But when I realized I had about 3 weeks left, I decided to get serious. No more alcohol which helped me cut off unneeded calories plus helped me wake up more alertly (although the 1st thing I do after showering, weighing, and measuring…is drinking a Manny’s beer on tap :). Then I decided to eat less at night plus snack more during the day to cut down on big meals. Then I also started to limit my carb intake too.
On the running side, I brought out my old 3-4 week 1/2 marathon plan that I used for the Scotia Bank Half Marathon, a.k.a., “The Race of My Life” when I was trying to break 2:00 and ran a 1:40 which left my coach astounded too. I definitely left everything I had on the course and ended up cramping while hobbling back to my hotel. So with the proper motivation, plan, and diet, I started to run faster and feel better.
Now the day is in front of me. I feel like I’ve already “won” regardless of the outcome. The picture below is the forecast tomorrow with 90% chance of rain plus 20 MPH winds. Not ideal conditions, but I feel mentally ready. I trained hard and have little to no regrets. I hope Loren and I both run hard and fast and the results will be close since I know he has been training hard (too bad we couldn’t train more together since having a 8 month old makes everything tougher).
I even got on my bike to do bad weather workouts. I had my bike adjusted earlier this year when I thought I might do another triathlon…but no such luck. So it was good to get back on the bike although my butt cheeks didn’t really appreciate it 😉
So my predicted time based on my 10K is 1:50. That’s the time I’m going to be targeting especially given the anticipated conditions. I think anything faster than that…I’ll be very pleased given the short amount of time I had to get ready for this. But that’s where I feel I’ve already won. It’s set me up to have a healthy Thanksgiving, given all the temptations, and I feel very good for the rest of the year. And this no drinking thing is really scaring me…I kinda like feeling 100% without being tired or thirsty the next day So we’ll see how I react after my Manny’s tomorrow because I distinctly remember drinking my large Bud Light after the Portland Marathon when I was sitting on the shower floor in a bed of ice…that it just didn’t taste that good.
Here’s to wishing a great and safe race to all the participants tomorrow. And this was a video I stumbled across when training on my bike that gave me goosebumps and brought me to tears. I have it now on my iPod Shuffle to motivate me up those hills around mile 9. Hope you enjoy and please feel free to share any other inspirational videos that moved you. So here’s to running hard and fast…leaving everything out there…because I AM A CHAMPION!