Friday, April 29, 2011

Winding Down and Gearing Up

The last few weeks have been action packed, involving a lot of writing, running, and manual labor. I finished another graduate school course, and I'll wrap up another in a couple weeks, I did some home improvement projects, and the running is picking up. With one grad class done and the other winding down, I'm feeling a little less overwhelmed. I even made time to get a massage this week after a ten-mile run, although it was impromptu and happened at 8:30 PM, on a school night, no less.

I went to Massage Envy, which I highly recommend because they are open late and were willing to see me an hour after I called. I wasn't sure how I felt about getting a massage at a chain establishment rather than an independent spa, but I was pleasantly surprised and felt awesome afterward. The best part was that it was only $49. I'm going to have to fight the urge to go back after my next long run, because it was really, really good way to speed up recovery time.

In addition to stretching longer and longer now, my runs are becoming even more frequent. I'm running five days a week, which means that my strength training has been reduced to once per week, according to my Nike+ coach program. I found that when I lowered my strength training to this level when I trained for the half in the fall, I got weaker and actually did not perform as well on my long runs, so on the days I do 'short' (3 mile) runs, I'm making an effort to squeeze in at least one additional strength routine each week.

On Tuesday, I'll do one of just a handful of runs that are nearly as long as the half. These twelve milers represent the peak of my training, and although I've done this all before, it still makes me nervous... and excited. Can I do it? Will I avoid injuries? I'm so close to accomplishing this goal that I don't want to let anything get in the way. So I'm hanging in and keeping up with my program, and before I know it, I'll be on my way up to Boston to run the race.

Hope, Love, Run,
Marathon Girl

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

My Week

It's been a crazy, and I mean CRAZY few weeks. I am writing this in lieu of getting ready for bed. It seems there are just not enough hours in the day for me to get everything done. I knew this was coming, and over the next six-to-eight weeks, I'll be living in a perpetual whirlwind, so if my posts are infrequent or short, you'll know why.

I am currently doing all of the following:
Working full-time
Coaching an after-school program
Taking two graduate courses
Privately tutoring
and of course...
Training for a half-marathon
Today I ran more than half the distance of the race...the runs get longer from here, but I'm feeling strong and training is going really well :)

That said...Yikes! Luckily these things all only overlap for a few weeks, so hopefully I can stay focused, get through it, and put 100% into all my commitments.

In other exciting news, this is young adult cancer awareness week (Yay!) And even more exciting, I found out a new drug was just approved to treat advanced melanoma. This is a really big deal because it's been over a decade since a new drug was introduced to treat this deadly disease. I remember a time not so long ago, when my goal was simply to live long enough to see this day.

I went into chemo with the mentality that I needed to keep fighting just long enough that a new, better drug would be approved. That day is here, and so am I. Luckily, I don't need that drug now, but it is a huge relief to know that there is an option for a stage of the disease that notoriously comes with a bleak prognosis of just months to live. The drug is called Yervoy, but I think others living with melanoma would join me in calling it hope, progress, or simply time.

My birthday is just a week away, so I'm considering Yervoy the gift I've been wishing for each time I've blown out the candles on my birthday cake for the last four years. So to anyone who had a hand in making it happen, thank you.

Hope, Love, Run.
-Marathon Girl