Sunday, June 3, 2012

Into the woods...

Memorial Day weekend was BEAUTIFUL and we took a 4 day weekend to play outside as much as possible. It was super humid and hot so our long run that Saturday was basically awful and made me question if I EVER wanted to run again, but fortunately our state park pass arrived before the weekend so we spent some much needed time hiking in the woods and I found my inner runner again by zooming through the trails like a crazy person... even if only 2 minutes at a time :)

I have to say as much as I love running, and as much as I now love hiking, nothing beats running in the woods. It is such a wild and free feeling when you just take off down a path, dodging trees and jumping over rocks and roots, running as fast as you can just for a few minutes... I'm telling you people, it is amazing!

Lukas on one of the two "tree bridges" on our path

There is a nice 3.1 or 4.1 mile loop at the park entrance which is only 5 minutes by car from our apartment. We decided that we really need to get out there 1 or 2 x's a week, especially since it is so close. We went twice during our 4 day weekend and again Wednesday after work and it was a great way to unwind. It is just so pretty and peaceful and fun to get out into nature together - best stress reliever there is.

We also spent some time at the pool on Saturday and Monday which was nice. When it gets that hot out the a/c isn't doing a whole lot more other than keeping a tiny space in our living room cold for the dog, so we decided to get some sun and embrace the heat. I wish we were still working 6a - 3p so we could have extra pool time like last year but o well... guess I will have to brave the scores of loud children on Saturdays like everyone else if I want to get some sun :-p

On Friday we decided to walk to Main Street and get a yummy lunch together - what better to do to celebrate not being at work?! :) We also wandered around and checked out the 2 running gear shops in town to see their minimalist shoe options. I tried on some Vibram Five Fingers running shoes and while Luke HATED them, I absolutely fell in love!

They feel so cool on my feet and all of the research I've done has led me to believe that they will help me to strength my feet, ankles, calves, and improve my form... all of which I need! I found the pair above at a great price during the holiday sales and have been breaking them in for the past  few days. I'm still going to use my normal running shoes for long runs but after I break these in for a bit, I might use them for shorter training runs. So far I'm enjoying them when taking the dog for our mile walks, starting off slow to avoid the injuries people have complained about online. Will let you know what I think after I've had them longer.

And last but not least... a training update.
Although last Saturday's long run was awful, I did get a few runs in during the week inspite of the humidity. On Thursday my 5k before work went really well because it finally cooled down and on Saturday (yesterday) it was even better! A nice 65-70 degrees while we were out in the morning, only around 50% humidity, and we knocked out a 6.4 mile training run in 66:45. That might seem really slow to longterm runners or natural speedsters but for me it was a great pace and faster than 2 weeks ago when we ran our first 5.2 miler.

I've only been back to running for 4 weeks now but I'm feeling good inspite of hip and calf issues that've popped up. As long as it is calling for cool weather on the 16th we will sign up to race our first 10k and first race ever! Honestly tho, if it is going to be hot and humid out, I'm not going to waste my money. We will just go out early in the morning as usual for a training run and save our first race for our 1/2 marathon in September. I haven't been back to running long enough to be used to the heat and humidity and I generally overheat/pass out easily anyway... not worth the risk nor the cruddy race just to say "I did it!"
Pray for cool weather for us tho because I'd really like to do this 10k to get a feel for the race atmosphere before our 1/2 Marathon this fall!

This has been an exciting week for the Fischers since we've finally gotten to go play outside and do something new and interesting. We'll try to take more woodsy pictures on our adventures so this blog is a little less rambly and more optically pleasing :)

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