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When Distance Ain’t a Thang

I love the interwebs.

I love how friendships can grow and distances can be bridged.

My friendship with Rebecca is one example.

This girl and I have been friends since 2006 when we started reading each others’ blogs.

I do truly count her as one of my BFFs.

It’s because of her that I started doing virtual races.  I won’t lie.  I thought virtual races were weird.  At first.  Then, I started signing up for the HRC races, and wham bam, I was hooked.

You might remember the Halloween race we did together . . .

Then, there was the BFF race we did a couple of months ago.

Well, last Saturday, we did another BFF race!

I loved seeing her picture when her medal arrived at her house . . .

It’s so motivating to have a friend you’re accountable to.  Knowing that she was doing the race in her little corner of the world gave me the extra oomph to go out and walk my own miles.

I got my distance in first.  I think she might have actually cleaned her house or performed some other super-amazing domestic duty before she got out.  Here in Florida, you’ve got to go before it gets too humid.

I was seriously sweating, y’all, when I finished.  Even walking at 9am was brutal!

I’m tough and pushed through.

I sent Rebecca my selfies, and when she finished, she put our pictures together . . .

Her shirt was just fabulous!  She has the best workout apparel, y’all!

Totally borrowed this from your blog, Rebecca. Hope you don’t mind!

I hung up this medal beside the last BFF medal we got.  I’d sent her the half that made the heart whole because I sometimes manage to plan well.  Even with my teacher brain on vacation, I did something okay, eh?

It felt good to add my race bib to my collection (I use a bib holder that I ordered from Gone for a Run).  I know that the medals might seem kind of childish to some people, but to me, they are symbolic of perseverance and a determination to push myself beyond what I sometimes think I’m capable of.

Thanks, Rebecca, to always being open to doing these races with me!  ❤

Catching Up – Part 2 – Virtual “Walks”

I am continuing to catch y’all up on what’s been happening at Chez Auburnchick when I haven’t been writing.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve participated in a few virtual races.

In April, I completed the Unmasked 10 Mile Run for Your Life, hosted by the Hogwarts Running Club.  All proceeds benefited the charity, To Write Love on her Arms.

I had to do the race in three segments because that distance was way too far for me to cover in one stretch.

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Leg 1

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Leg 2

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Leg 3

I was thrilled when the medal came in.  Isn’t it fantastic????

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Look at the back!  The HRC always designs the loveliest touches to its medals.

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In May, Rebecca and I did the Best Friends Forever 5k.

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She had contacted me about doing it quite a few months ago, but my ankle wasn’t nearly ready to undertake that distance, so true to her nature, she waited for me.

We designated May 13th as THE day.

I got out early and wound up with a decent pace time . . .

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I was so excited to add the medal to my bling rack . . .

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We’d done a Halloween run last fall and had a ton of fun sending each other selfies, which we’d put together into a collage.  She created one for the BFF run.

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This gal continues to inspire me.  She NEVER gives up.  She constantly challenges herself and is always willing to try new things.  I am so grateful that God brought us together through this blogging world.

Upcoming Races

I am currently registered for three . . . yes, I said 3 . . . races.

Oy vey!

I’ve got the HRC Sirius Half Marathon.  Look at the artwork for the t-shirt . . .

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Borrowed this image from Booster.com

Proceeds will be donated to Mission K9 Rescue.

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I’ve already started covering the distance and have about 2/3 of it done.  Yay me!

I recently signed up for a local 5k.  I’ll be doing that race in a couple of weeks.  Wait until you see my outfit for it.  Bahahaha!

On Wednesday, I registered for the We Run Free Because of the Brave 4 Miler, sponsored by Gone for a Run.  This race will benefit the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.

So, despite my ankle recovery, which seems to be especially tough right now, I am trying to keep doing my thing.  It’s not easy, let me tell you.  The pain I go through after each walk is bad.  I don’t really know how much of it is normal or if I’m pushing myself too hard.  That’s a conversation I frequently have with my physical therapist.

It feels great to be out and about again, and I absolutely love that my registrations are going to worthwhile causes.  This is definitely a win-win for everyone involved (except maybe my ankle).

Bandage Up and Go

Y’all, with my renewed focus on running, thanks to a backlog of medals that have been sitting around my house the last few months, I am discovering some of the unpleasantness that accompanies pounding the pavement…

Blisters.

Oh goodness, but one of my toes has a raw spot from where the toe beside it digs into it, and the nail has rubbed off the skin.  No amount of trimming and filing will help.  I ran into this problem last fall when I began doing Piyo.

Then, two days ago, I must have either jammed the tip of my toenail or created a blister on the top of my toe when I ran.

As a result, I gave myself yesterday afternoon off.  I thought that things would be better this morning.

They weren’t.

A couple of things are fueling my current running mojo…the stacked-up medals and calorie burn.

I am all about burning calories, let me tell you.

I decided to stop being a baby about the blisters and bandaged up.

I covered up the tootsies with my fabulous socks from Gone for a Run (love, love, love this company) and prepared to run.

My goal for the day was to complete a 5k…the first in a series of four mini races within the big OneHRC House Marathon race sponsored by the Hogwarts Running Club.  It’s comprised of four distances and four medals.  The 5k is the shortest run.

The morning was crisp but not cold…sunny but not hot.

I had my route already in mind.  It’s funny how, now that I’ve been running more regularly, I can tell you which routes equal out to which distances.  I am forever keeping tabs on my fitness watch during my runs…monitoring my heart rate and the distance I’ve traveled.

It’s also funny how, now that I’m running different distances, that 3.1 miles doesn’t seem like it’s very far.

I usually start my runs with a half-mile walk, but I am not one who likes to waste my time.  I wanted to get the job done quickly, so I went ahead and started off running.  Not fast mind you.  I am definitely not fast.  I wish I was.

In fact, I was thinking about my speed last night when I attend my school’s football game.  It was a BIG game against our arch rival.  The place was packed.  Teachers lined the track that surrounds the field for an up-close-and-personal-view.

The game went back and forth with both teams scoring constantly.  It was so much fun to watch and a bit unnerving at the end.  My school came up with some incredible plays and wound up winning after a very tense final 30 seconds when the other school had the ball, and we stopped them all the way through their fourth down.

One such play was a fast sprint down the field.  I said, to the administrator standing beside me, that I wished I could run like that…that I wished I had the player’s height and long legs…that I could cover some major ground quickly.  At 5’3″ tall, I have short strides, and I’m definitely not a sprinter.

The administrator and I are friends…have been ever since he coached my kids in middle school and taught Rooster in one of his classes.

He told me something that kept replaying in my mind this morning when I ran.

He said that I had endurance.

He and I are friends on Facebook, and I suspect that he’s seen my frequent fitness posts.

His words though…they encouraged me so much and reminded me not to focus on what I lack but on what I’ve developed over time and through persistence.

So I surprised myself by running the entire 3.372 miles (according to my Charity Miles app..slightly different from my Garmin app).  I ran from the moment I left my house until the moment I returned to it.

All.  The.  Way.

This is the third outing in a row when I have run more than three miles straight.

Proud, I was of myself, as Yoda would say.

I represented both my Rooster /Airman boy and my Auburn Tigers while displaying the medal I earned today.

Each Hogwarts house has its own race and medal.  The medals will be put together, once all races are run, to form a large medal representing the entire Hogwarts school.

The message on the back…

Here’s a closeup of the frame that my running club sent out to hold the pieces together, even though they are magnetic and will connect once joined.  There was a problem in the manufacturing, and some of the medals weren’t connecting, so the running club came up with the idea of the frame as a fix and sent each participant one free of charge!  Is it any wonder why I love my group so much?

If those three empty spots aren’t reason enough to get motivated, that I don’t know what is!  I cannot WAIT to place each remaining piece!

Stay tuned.

Runday Sunday

I am ever the planner, that I am.

When I got up on Sunday, I knew exactly what I’d be doing after church (admire the good hair and makeup day I was having).

It wouldn’t involve eating.

It would involve doing something about this…

Y’all, those are four racing medals that I have not allowed myself to unpack because I haven’t run them yet.

Sigh.

Hi, my name is Auburnchick, and I’m a sucker for race bling.

And charities that buying race bling supports.

Two of those medals are my Hogwarts Running Club races.  The other two are from Gone for a Run.

Sunday was going to be my Runder the Sea race day.

Originally, I thought it was a 5k.

I think I audibly groaned when I saw the actual distance…

Yes, people.  That’s a 10k…double the distance.

Please note the “suggested” run date.

I was woefully late to the party.

Hey, better to be late than not run at all, right?

See, I like the way I think.

So, I got all gussied up in my race tank and set out.

The weather in Florida is seriously to die for right now.  I started out wearing a long-sleeve top.  By the time I got to the entrance of my neighborhood, I had tied it around my waist.

I’ve figured out a good route for my longer runs.  Whatever song was coming through my ear buds said something about being miles from home.  It was fitting.

There was very low humidity, so sweating wasn’t an issue.  Just my legs, which started hitting a wall around mile three.

Yeah, I know.  So much for being fit.

I have a cardio playlist, but when it finished, I put on one of my new-to-me favorite artists…

I love his storytelling…except for the song that just today I noticed was about a girl stripping for him.

#smh

I love the run toward home.  It’s all downhill.

But first, a side trip through my friend’s neighborhood.  She and I work together and, conveniently, live almost across the way from each other.

Then, I made my way around the perimeter of my neighborhood and back home.

I was really pleased with myself.  I cannot do entire runs as just that…runs.  I do, however, alternate walk/run intervals.  I try really hard to make my run intervals as long as I can.  Yesterday, I was able to run 1.25-mile intervals.  That was huge for me!  My walk intervals were between .25 and a half mile each.

Apparently, my excitement got the better of me.  I ran between 6.7 and 6.9 miles, depending on which app I checked.  I liked Charity Miles’s version…

The Mr. was kind enough to snap a few photos of me…

I love Gone for a Run.  They include fun race shirts, bibs, and pretty medals.

But wait…there’s more!

Lol.

As if that run wasn’t enough, I headed back outside after my little photo session and scooped dog poop so I could mow.

Between the two activities, I burned a little over 800 calories!  I added them with the calculator on my phone.  Ha!

As you can see, Sunday was all about running and definitely not about resting!

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