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10 miles and a swim?

So Saturday morning I got up bright and early for my 6-10 miler. I wanted to hit ten miles, but I didn’t know how I would fare and I didn’t want to push myself too hard pending how I felt during the run. I was just going to run until I was tired. I started out at a nice pace but I knew I hadn’t run this far in a long time. I just ran around the streets, looking at all the Christmas decorations and I enjoyed the fact that I was in a short sleeve shirt and shorts. It was a little bit chilly, but it felt good. I thought a lot about the past year on the run.

I never thought that I would be where I am today at the beginning of the year. It was even better because about mile 2 in, I randomly saw a guy wearing a Marathon Maniacs jersey. I looked at him and smiled and teared up a little. I am a maniac. I am one of a little over 2,000 people who are maniacs, just like myself. I did it. It was a really happy moment for me to see that because one of the main reasons I became a maniac was because of the camaraderie the maniacs shared. Then around mile 7 I was getting pretty tired, which was a given, I hadn’t run past 4 miles in two weeks. I just kept pushing forward though and like I usually do, thinking that it was only three more miles, then two and a half left, then I hit nine miles and I knew I would be able to make ten, which made me happy that I could still pull that distance.

It was a great day out for a run, the sun got a little warm towards then end and people were friendly. It was a very reflective run though, and I’m really sore from it! I didn’t run fast or for time, but it felt good to be able to get out there and just go. I did some core work when I got home too. DEATH to my abs. I’m still feeling it today. Then I Christmas shopped for everyone on my list was pretty tired and went to bed early Saturday evening after watching Cars and Ratatouille, both great movies.

Then yesterday was my first day to attempt to swim. I was meeting up with someone who swims often and told me that he could help me out. Well, he could also help me out if I started to drown. I’m not scared of water or anything like that but I was nervous to try to swim. I brought my Malibu Marathon towel to make myself feel more legitimate. We worked out our arms and I did more core work in the gym before heading out to the pool. It was just a little bit chilly, but he was right, I got used to it quickly and then I swam a few little laps towards him so he could watch me. I need to work on bending my arms more and my breathing a lot.

I think one of my main problems is that when I am swimming, I swim until I can’t breathe anymore and I try to take in too much air in the limited amount of time you get to breath when putting your head to the side. So I need to breathe more often. I also feel that I start out really strong and fast and then I die by the end and my form gets all crappy. Another thing to work on is just working on swimming laps. I swam a total of 600 meters yesterday. I wasn’t that tired by the end of each lap but my body felt like it was going to sink to the bottom. The pool is so long! I just tried to think of it as then end of a race when I was getting closer and closer to the wall. I also kept telling my legs to kick when my arms got so tired. I kept thinking, Come on legs! You ran a marathon! Kick! My swimming coach was very helpful though and I’m glad he was there so I wouldn’t drown. Watching him swim, he made it look so easy! I felt like I looked like a seal who just got electrocuted. I must get better!

It was really fun though and I really liked swimming! So many people have asked me if I’m going to do a triathlon or why I wanted to start swimming. Well here is my answer.

I am not looking to do a triathlon at all at this point, and another reason why I will not be doing a triathlon is because I don’t have money for a bike. Yes, I know I have a beach cruiser, but if I did a triathlon I would want a legitimate bike. Also, people have suggested I get one from Craigslist, or something like that, but seriously, I barely have enough money to turn on the heater, so I really don’t think buying a bike would be the smartest financial decision right now. So, do I want to do a triathlon? Yes, at one point in my life I do, but not right now. Also, I started swimming because I wanted to implement something else in my workout besides running and I know swimming will increase my lung capacity and will strengthen my back. I notice when I start doing longer runs my back gets so sore. I also think that it is a great workout when it’s raining, or on an off or rest day, it works totally different muscles than running and I did really enjoy it! I just wanted the ability to mix things up. Also I live close to a huge pool where they had the Olympic Trials a long time ago, and I would love to take advantage of that. So don’t worry, I’m not stopping running, I’m not becoming a triathlete just yet. I’m just seeing other ways to work out. :)

Tomorrow comes my training plan for the Surf City Half Marathon, and yes, I’m sore today.


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