Sunday, February 27, 2011

Half Marathon

Last Sunday was a memorable day for me. I ran the 2011 Armstrong Half Marathon. It was so fun!

April 2010 I ran the Capital 10k which at that time a huge step for me. I have always enjoyed running like 3 to 4 miles several times a week but never really pushed myself to do more. So when the Capital 10k came around I thought this would be a good goal for me to work toward. So I did and it was great. It was so fun. There were tons of people dressed up in characters, parents pushing baby strollers, and even people walking. It was a fun Austin experience. Running 6 miles with the little prepping I did and just having the adrenaline kick in made me want to push myself more.

So after that experience, I decided to prepare to run a half marathon (13.1 miles). The next half marathon in Austin was February 2011. What!?! That just seemed like forever away from April 2010. But I decided I would do it! ;) So I started running and prepping my self early. But has time went on and the weather got colder, my running lessened. By the time December came around I was hardly running once a week. Definitely not good prepping for a half marathon. :) So in January Tim and I were talking about the tailgate our church was doing for the Armstrong Marathon. He knew I really wanted to run the half but was not feeling completely prepared. We decided I could do with intense training in these few weeks before the run. So that's what I did. I was slowed down a bit with the freezing days here in Texas but pressed on as much as I could.

So that's a little prep before we get to the run. :)

So run morning, I wake up at 4:45am, get ready, drink a whole bottle of water, and eat 2 pieces of toast. My 5:30am I am on the road and parked downtown by 6:00am. The run started at 7am so I was a hour early. Hmmm, what to do now. The plan was to use the bathroom one more time before the race, but I ended up not doing that. I talked to a few girls for a few minutes, read my bible, and stretched a bit. At 6:40am I walk toward the Capital to the starting line. What a rush. There were thousands of people stretching, talking, and prepping for the run. It was so fun to be a part of such a cool event in Austin. The mayor of Austin and Lance Armstrong spoke and we sang the national anthem. Again, what a rush. So the race begins... mind you I had to go to the bathroom so 30 seconds in I stopped at the first portable. ;) Yes, a portable someone had left a stinky gift, I was not very excited about and no toilet paper. yes, not very excited about either.

Anyway, after that I was off for the long haul. I set my ipod on my iphone to listen to Flyleaf and then a few messages from Matt Chandler on Habakkuk. Listening to Flyleaf at the beginning was great for "pumping up" music. I enjoy listening to podcasts during long runs because it takes my mind off what I am doing and gets my mind thinking about God and other things. I love listening to Matt Chandler's messages but I don't think I realized how much he raising and lowers his voice until you are trying to run for a LONG time without adjusting the volume on your ipod. That was a little hard to try to run and adjust the volume every few minutes, but well worth it of course.

It's funny how God speaks to us at the most random times. A few things that stood out to me was the importance of seeking God. "KNOCK and the door will be opened to you, SEEK and you will find". I was reminded of the how seeking is active. It's not just praying but actively seeking the open door God wants to you go through. Also he talked about the importance of when you are going through a hard time and know God is in control but it's hard to see it... we have to ABIDE in him. Abide meaning rest in Him. Know who he is, read his word and SEEK Him. God has laid this on my heart a few weeks back as I've been planning and coordinating our Ladies Coffee Talk for our church,North Village Church . I was holding back tears as I'm running. I know, it's hard to keep steady breathing when you are choked up with tears. :) We've just been thinking through a few decision and options in our life and this is exactly what I needed to know. SEEK Him and Abide in Him.

I had been running for an hour and a half just truckin along and I received a text from Tim that said, "U r awesome, you can do this". What a sweet man. That gave me an extra push and skip to my run. :) Toward the end of the run was definitely the hardest.(of course) Most of the run I didn't know what mile I was at I just kept running. At mile 10 we had a marker letting us know. So I am thinking "Ok 3 more miles, I can do this" so I picked up my speed a bit. Not realizing I am running 10 minute miles so that is 30 minutes. I was going strong until we had 2 CRAZY long hills toward the end of the run. It sucked that it worked out that way on the course, but that's how it was. That was really hard for me, but I pressed on. Probably at the beginning of my last mile the talk I was listening to ended. So I didn't want to start a whole new talk so I switched it back to Flyleaf. It was nice to finish to "pumping up" music. It definitely gave me jump to my run. I sprinted the last 100 meters and finished strong.

The first thoughts through my head. I did it!! I ran a half marathon!!

So thankful God giving me strength and for Tim's support and encouragement. Tim was so proud. He wanted me to wear my medal all day and my 2011 Marathon shirt I got at the finish line. It was so cute. :) I think Neela was proud too, she was just a little overwhelmed with all the people and commotion. She stayed by my side after the race but didn't say anything for the first 10 minutes. Or I might have been stinky. :)

What a fun experience. I have no desire to run a full marathon. Definitely respect people who do, just not sure if I want to train and pursue running right now. I am looking to start a new type of workout. I am looking into yoga or pilates. I have been running since I was in high school, time for something new. I'll keep you updated. :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

20 Months Old

I can't believe Neela is 20 months old. What a fun time it has been spending time with her and seeing the world through her eyes. Ok, just to warn you, I am an emotional gal. :) I was telling Tim the other day how sad it is that Neela is no longer a baby, she's a toddler/kid. She has grown so fast. But Tim reminded me that we have embraced and savored every moment with her. We have enjoyed every laugh, every hug, every milestone, and every new word. Whether it's a word we want her to repeat or not. :) I love this stage. Everything is so exciting, even throwing trash away in the trash can. :) (my little helper)

A few cute things she says or does right now:

- Tells our dog Rocky "Bless you" when he sneezes

- (Tim loves this...) When she says Stickers she says "Stickuuurs"

- At night when we lay her down she picks out 2 books to go in the crib with her. So before she goes to bed she reads them and sings the "Elmo's Riding" song. It's so sweet.

- In the morning she usually stays in her crib for a little while just talking to herself or her toys :) and sometimes practices names: Mommy, Daddy, Nana, Nani, Paw Paw, MiMi, Mark, Reese, Josie (her friends from school).

- Also at night when I lay her down, my routine is to rock her for a minute and sing "I love you Lord" and then we say a prayer together. Well, lately I see her randomly squint her eyes (I guess I squint my eyes sometimes when i pray) and say some jibberish and then say Amen. It's so cute.

- Loves animals and her favorite one right now is a duck. She flaps her arms and says "quack, quack"

- She will get on my back and try to peek around my head so I can scare her. (she enjoys the little moments :) )

- All girl: She loves necklaces, bracelets, bows, and purses

- She loves dancing to Kelly Clarkson. She will come to me and say "dance" meaning, go turn on the music so we can get down. :)

Just a small glimpse into the life of my sweet girl! :)