Running Buddha

Running Buddha, Sub 60 10k, Temple Building, Zaimu Challenge
A funny thing happened yesterday. While searching for the image to accompany my blog, I suddenly felt "some kind of way." I'm not sure what that phrase really means (ha), but I felt excitement and a sort of recognition, seeking and finding yet another runner. Not just runners... I've been seeking and finding elite track athletes. Women who spend hours a week training their bodies to be efficient and fast. Side note: they're all fine, too.  Yassss! [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="218"] Mikele Barber[/caption] The feeling surprised me because although I was sprinter in high school, I didn't really enjoy the work that went into it. As a kid, I loved racing classmates and neighbors. Sprinting felt like flying, and I could count on being first or really close. But running varsity track wasn't exactly fun. It…
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7, 8, 9…

Running Buddha, Sub 60 10k, Temple Building, Zaimu Challenge
In 2014, I began a running plan via my RunKeeper app. It's a fat burning plan, and alternates intervals with steady runs to increase your fitness level. The app features several such plans for goals like run a 5k (3.1 miles), run a 5k in less than 30 minutes, and so on. Although I don't enter races, I run 5ks and a rare 10k (6.2 miles), as part of a regular exercise regimen. While perusing the plans back then, I noticed a 7-mile training run included to build endurance for a 5k. At that point I was a consistent 4-mile runner and 7 miles seemed daunting. It was a little too far outside my comfort zone, and after all, I was just a casual runner. The goal and the fear intrigued me, though. I filed it in the back of my…
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One step. 10k.

Running Buddha, Sub 60 10k, Temple Building, Zaimu Challenge
Today I began a 10k training program. I started on Day 3, as I'd already completed the equivalent of the first two days on my regular regimen. I ran my standard distance – 4 miles – so it was an easy entry. My distance running has been primarily self-taught/self-guided until now. I've been comfortable, and now that I'm fully settled into my new life, I'm ready to break boundaries. I want to prove to myself that I can set and accomplish goals with consistency and commitment. These ingredients are sometimes lacking in my creative endeavors, and the combination of structure, challenge and discipline will reap benefits in the weeks and months to come. Today's run was to be conversation pace, defined on this plan as 11:15-11:30 minutes per mile. I nailed it…
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In progress

Running Buddha, Temple Building, Zaimu Challenge
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="224"] Ajee' Wilson[/caption] Today I ran another 4 miler. I don't generally run two days in a row, but rain is forecast for tomorrow, so I had to get it in. I had modest goals – namely maintaining yesterday's performance with the addition of a slightly faster warm up mile. To my surprise and delight, I crushed it. I pushed the warm up mile and was progressively faster on all miles thereafter. I even dropped my average pace by 30 seconds.  That's pretty shocking, and in truth, I hit my target. As in, what I expected to be doing after a couple of weeks of effort. Next steps? Keeping this up long term, and not just as a quick trick a couple of days here and there. I'm still taking…
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Indigo Stretch

Zaimu Challenge
My running trail is an enchanted forest. Trees and grasses in various stages of bloom flank the whole path. Today I experienced the first honeysuckle this season. Nose candy. Micro climates and mini ecosystems pulse in the enchanted forest. A chorus of birds on this stretch. A pond of frogs and cicadas on the next. More birds with new songs here. A deer crossing there. A snack bar for bunnies and so on. You experience this all within the first 1.5 miles of the trail. If you're open to the sounds, scents and scenery, you're never bored along the way. [caption id="attachment_3431" align="alignright" width="300"] Indigo Bunting by Dan Vickers[/caption] Months I spent running that stretch, turning around at 2 miles and heading back in. But there's a stretch farther in the distance. I make…
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Tune In

sickness, Temple Building, Zaimu Challenge
I have DVD programs for cardio, strength training, and yoga, and I've relied on these for years. On running days, I wake up and I jog the same trail, albeit different distances, on a regular basis. There are good reasons to avoid the same routines and paths, but I embrace the repetition. Today was a strength day, so I whipped out my barbell set and selected a DVD from my strength program. The workout was surprisingly easy. When I am well, I can finish the hour-long program in an hour.  I compare that to two days ago, when I was in the early stages of recovering from a cold. Fatigued, and probably a little behind on calories, I had to stop every 5-10 minutes for a short break. Tuesday's hour-long workout took more like…
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Letters to my little sisters.

Personal Narrative
"Thirty is for knowing. Forty is for building." ~ @ndcollier #WWMPod — Sojourner Verdad (@SoJoXOXO) February 19, 2014 A week from today is my 40th birthday. *shimmies* I'm very excited about this milestone. Aside from seeing Ailey, I'm not sure what else I'll do to commemorate it. I want to go dancing. Salsa, like Ailey's Revelations, is high on my list of favorite things. As we were planning this week's episode of Whiskey, Wine & Moonshine, Sojo realized this would be our 40th episode. We decided to call it 40 Before 40. It's literal, in that it's the 40th before I turn 40 (Ms. Smart and Sojo are a tad younger). But it's also a play off bucket lists and things people want to accomplish before milestone birthdays. I hadn't…
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Make it non-negotiable

30 Day Blog Challenge, Temple Building
Today is National Women's Health & Fitness Day. People who have met me via social media and in real life, know I make #templebuilding a priority. The days I get up and exercise in the morning are the days I'm off to a fabulous start. But there was a time when that wasn't the case. I'm a self-described athlete. I ran and biked like most kids in my neighborhood growing up. I was a gymnast in elementary school.  A cheerleader in middle school. I danced (band auxiliary) and sprinted (varsity track) in high school. I engaged in fewer structured activities in college, although I danced (partied) several hours a week which definitely counts for something. After college I had an on again, off again love affair with local gyms.  I stocked…
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