Where’s the Running?

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Running, you say?  Hmmm, sounds vaguely familiar as well…

Yes, I started this blog when I was getting back into running, and things were moving right along until last Spring, mid-April, when I rolled my ankle pretty badly.  I was on my usual route around the neighborhood when I saw a large dog on the sidewalk the next block up.

I’m not afraid of dogs, but this was not a dog I recognized, there was no collar or leash that I could see, and there were no people in sight.  Instead of barreling straight towards this large, unfamiliar dog, I decided to respect its space and cross the street.  Not that my running could be considered barreling, but you get my point.

Easy peasy, right?  It’s just crossing the street, it can’t be that hard.  Unless you’re me.

As I headed down the next driveway to the street my left foot landed on just the right/wrong spot, and I rolled off the curb.  And swore.  Loudly.  I hobbled back to the sidewalk and leaned on a lamp post until the pain subsided.  I noticed the dog was looking at me curiously and I may have yelled “this is all your fault, you know”.

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(don’t bother stalking me, we don’t live in this neighborhood anymore)

I was able to walk back home with just a little throbbing and I figured I’d be back to normal in a few days.  Nope!

Normal walking didn’t cause me any issues, but bending my ankle a certain way still resulted in a sharp pain and I didn’t want to do additional damage so I rested it for a few weeks.  It was still bothering me at the end of May so I mentioned it during an annual physical and the Doctor said that a bad roll can take up to eight weeks to fully heal so I should give it a little longer.  Eight weeks would have been mid-June and I gave it until the end of August when I decided to see a foot/ankle specialist.  He took x-rays and found… a big-fat-nothing.

I decided to keep up the no-running-regimen and accept that maybe it would always be a problem, but almost a year later now, I realized I hadn’t felt the pain in a while.  I can bend my ankle any which way and it feels fine, nothing funny at all, so I think I’m ready to get some running back in my life.

I’m currently training to WALK a half marathon in May, and now that my walks have been getting longer I’ve been getting the itch to run, especially now that the weather is getting nicer and a lot more runners are out and about.  I’m getting some serious running envy and have decided to add some running intervals to my walking this week, short and slow to start with.  Crossing my fingers – and laces – that it goes well!

The Color Run is Coming!

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(Disclosure: This is a Sponsored post for The Color Run.  In exchange for sharing the discount code and my experience with the race, I will be receiving compensation in the form of free race registration.  All thoughts expressed are my own.  I was actually planning to register for, and blog about, this race anyway so it seemed like a good fit.)

Saturday, September 7th, just under four weeks to go!  Who wants to run with me???

My TimeHop app reminded me that I was asking this same question about a year ago:

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Last year I was going to run it with a work friend but she had family stuff come up and I was too chicken to go by myself so it didn’t happen.  This year, it WILL happen for sure, and Mr. Won’t Run may even do it with me if work doesn’t interfere.  Running is not his exercise of choice, but I think the idea of throwing stuff at me is too fun to pass up.

I just finished week 5 of Couch to 5k, so if you do that math, it’ll work out perfectly.  C25k is a 9 week program so I will be finishing it just in time for the race.  It’s like it was meant to be!

W5R1 W5R2 W5R3 pace

The idea of running 3.1 miles still seems impossible, but my last run was 20 minutes without stopping and I actually did it, so maybe, just maybe… At least my running routes are pretty!

W5R3 route

But seriously, who wants to Color Run with me in Portland???

I have a code for $5 off registration to sweeten the deal!  Come on, you know you want to!!

They don’t call it the “Happiest 5k on the Planet” for nothing, check this out:

You could even get a group of friends and run it together.  If you register with a team of 4 or more you automatically get $5 off, then you can use the code as well for a total of $10 off.

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Sign up quick though, these races usually sell out, use COLOR5OFF when you register!

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I love that this is a fun run and not a serious race, especially for my first one.

Less stress, more fun.

My new life motto.

So tell me…
Have you done a Color Run before?  Are you doing one this year?
Any tips for a first time 5k runner?

(Disclosure: This is a Sponsored post for The Color Run.  In exchange for sharing the discount code and my experience with the race, I will be receiving compensation in the form of free race registration.  All thoughts expressed are my own.  I was actually planning to register for, and blog about, this race anyway so it seemed like a good fit.)

One Year Later

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My one year blogiversary was a week ago.  I missed it, but it got me thinking about what I was doing one year ago.  I was getting back into running and it’s the whole reason I started this blog.

Well, I haven’t been running in a while, but I happened to be planning on going out for one tonight.  I had decided to start back at week one of Couch to 5k, but then I got my TimeHop alert.  It’s a fun app that tells you what you were posting on social media a year ago, two years ago, three years ago, etc.

Here’s what I was posting on Twitter one year ago today:

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Week 2, Run 1.

I decided to start there today.

Again.

It was warm out but thankfully there were clouds and a breeze.  I was worried about how it would go but it actually felt great.  Well, it didn’t feel great – my lungs were on fire – but it felt great to get out there again and I’m looking forward to the next run on Thursday.

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I’m not sure how I feel about being in the same place I was a year ago.  I know I’m not in exactly the same place.  I was a lot more active throughout this last year than the one before, but it’s still a little disappointing.  I’m back at it though, and that’s what counts right?

Keeping at it.

Healthy choices.  Active choices.  Every day.

Can’t wait to see where we are a year from now.

Give your old running shoes a new life with Kindrunner.com

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With yesterday’s post about my new “build it and they will come” blogging philosophy, today’s post is a little bit ironic.  I must have been doing something right because I was recently contacted by Kindrunner.com to see if I was interested in working with them.

Who, me?  Little ‘ol me?  How did you even find me?

Well, however they found me, I’m glad they did because this company seems RAD, and right up my alley.  I have received similar emails in the past about new products or companies but none of them have really fit until now.

I love everything that Kindrunner stands for and I am thrilled to now be a Kindrunner Ambassador and am helping spread the word about them!

So, what is Kindrunner?

Well, in one of their emails to me they describe themselves as “the most innovative/informative and environmentally friendly e-commerce site the running industry has yet to see!”  From what I have seen so far, I would have to agree!

Kindrunner.com is a brand new website that just launched and has a very focused offering of only the best in running shoes and running gear.  Emphasis on RUNNING.

Not hiking.  Not golfing.  Not lumberjacking.

They will always be 100% all about the running, it’s their passion.

They want to give fellow runners a first class experience in shoe-buying, as well as providing a Custom Fit Process to help find the best running shoe for YOU.  Getting an accurate fit online may seem impossible, but these guys have been in the running shoe business since 1978.  Um, that’s the year I was born, so… that’s a long time.  They know their stuff!

They are also passionate about giving back, and this is the really cool part of their business model… For every pair of running shoes you purchase from them, Kindrunner will accept a pair of old running shoes (reasonably-worn) and issue you an account credit of $10 good towards any future purchases with them.  They call it Kindness Cash Rewards.

So what do they want with your old shoes?  They will be passing them along to one of their two shoe donation partners (Soles 4 Souls and MORE Foundation Group) who will then be passing them along to people in developing countries with the greatest need, or maybe even to those in the US (for example, to victims of the recent Oklahoma tornadoes).  I think we probably take shoes for granted here in the US, it’s hard to remember that in other parts of the world they are a luxury but one that could make a huge difference in someone’s daily life and health.

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Giving your old shoes a new life also helps minimize the carbon footprint of running shoes.  It takes a lot of energy to manufacture and ship them to begin with, and then it can take 90-100 years before they start to breakdown in a landfill!  Most of the shoes runners end up retiring still have a lot of life left in them, they’re just not great for running.  So instead of a landfill, Kindrunner helps you get them to someone who can still use the heck out of them!

But wait… there’s more!

Kindrunner also has some other features that NO ONE else is offering which makes it a totally unique experience.

Free 3 Way Shipping – Free shipping of your order to you, free shipping of any returns for any reason, free shipping of your donated shoes back to them for re-purposing with Soles 4 Souls or The More Foundation Group.

Confident Runner Pricing – An option presented upon checkout which rewards those who know exactly what they are looking for. This option waives the Free Return Shipping because you know exactly what you want and don’t think you’ll have any need to return it, and this option offers the shoe at a below retail price. You still get free shipping of your order to you, and free shipping of your donated shoes back to them for re-purposing.

Kindness Cash Rewards (KCR) – As mentioned above, this is what turns your old shoes into credit towards new ones or any product on their website. KCR are available to the customer after any footwear purchase (the idea behind this is to replace your old shoes with new ones, and keep the old ones out of the garbage, landfills, or ones closet… thus why it is available after footwear purchase). Upon receipt of their footwear order, customers have the option to place their old shoes into the Kindrunner shipping box and place the pre-paid return label on the box for shipment back to us.  Upon receipt of the label, we will scan the bar code and place the KCRs onto the customers account for future use.  Each return label (whether it contain one pair or 4 pairs of shoes) is worth $10 KCR per new shoes purchased (5 pairs purchased on that order, you can earn up to $50 KCR) or credits towards future purchase. The KCR can be used to purchase ANYTHING that Kindrunner sells and will never expire unless your account has been inactive for a 12 month period.

Expert Product Reviews – Each and every product they carry comes with an expert product review video on the same page that the product is listed on – that’s handy! On that same page they also list their recommended alternatives so you can consider similar styles.

Check out their video on the Brooks Ghost 5 which is the running shoe I’m currently wearing – they know their stuff and they have a sense of humor too:

These videos are done by individuals who have worked in the running industry for a number of years as either shoe reps, store owners, or expert shoe fitters.

Easy 365 returns – A customer has 365 days to return any product, so long as it is in its original packaging and in its original condition.  If you are injured and unable to use the shoe, if your doctor wants you in a different model because of orthotics, no worries… no questions asked!

So what do you guys think, are you hooked on Kindrunner yet?

Oh, and as a fun reward for their earliest customers, they’re offering “Free Socks for Life” to their first 500 customers! Each time one of those first 500 customers returns and purchases a new shoe their order will ship with a free pair of socks of the customer’s choice from Kindrunner’s sock inventory.  How fun is that?!

Co-Founder Michael Conforti sums it up well:

“When a customer shops at Kindrunner, they will have not only an excellent ecommerce experience, but also an opportunity to contribute to making our planet a healthier, cleaner, and kinder place!”

How could you not be smitten with a company that has that kind of mission?

Head on over and check them out: http://www.kindrunner.com/

They’re also very social: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / YouTube

And as the Kindrunner folks like to say… Happy Running!

Back on the Treadmill Again

Did anyone else watch the women’s Olympic marathon on Sunday?

With my re-interest in running and the fact that two of the Americans are from Oregon (Kara Goucher & Shalane Flanagan), I made sure to set the DVR for 3am on Sunday morning and watched it about 8 hours later when I finally got up!  Mr. Won’t Run couldn’t imagine how I found it interesting but I really did.

A lot can happen over 26 miles and I loved seeing how the leaders changed throughout the race.  Kara and Shalane were leaders for a long time but ended up finishing 10th and 11th.  I couldn’t admire those runners more, they were amazing.  To run for over two hours straight, are you kidding me?  I’m doing three minutes straight and feeling pretty cocky about it, but two hours??  That’s like running during an entire movie.

Ooh, there’s an idea!  Fill a theater with treadmills for a different kind of movie marathon.  It’ll have to be a real movie that’s actually two hours long though, none of these 90 minuters trying to pass themselves off as movies.

Anyways… watching the marathon may have been dangerous because now I’m having crazy ideas like maybe I could run a marathon.  Someday.  In the far, far, far off future.

Wait, what?  Me?  Run a marathon?  I think I’m losing my mind.

Remember my out-of-the-blue ankle pain?  I’ve been off the running train for two weeks now, and the moment I decide I should call an actual Doctor the pain suddenly goes away.  I gave it a few more days just to be sure but tonight I picked up my C25K training.  I started where I left off, Week 3 Run 1, and I actually did it without too much trouble.  Thankfully the ankle felt fine and I’m really hoping that whatever it was has worked itself out.

While it felt good to be running again, that darn doubt started sneaking in.  Who am I to think I could one day run a marathon?  I can hardly get through these three minutes!  I’d never be able to run 26 miles!  And then I remembered this:

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Saw this on Pinterest a while back and I think I finally found the true source: http://spirituallythinking.blogspot.com/2012/01/highlight-reel.html

So let’s break it down…

This C25k training is my behind-the-scenes.

The OLYMPIC MARATHON was definitely their highlight reel.

Keep it in perspective, Sarah!

And here’s something else that may help you keep going:

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Found this on Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/pin/70437465036493/) which linked to this site (http://itsfitnessbaby.com/2159/) and another pin linked to this tumblr page (http://thetimeisnow-30lbs.tumblr.com/) (I hate pins from tumblr), not sure where this originated though. If it’s yours please let me know so I can credit you or take it down. Please don’t sue me, I have no money.

So how about it, a marathon next fall?  Maybe just a half…

Resisting A Rest

The one thing I’m NOT liking about Couch to 5K is these darn rest days!

I posted on Twitter last week about my itch to run and Dara (@CookinCanuck) totally called it when she said I have the bug!

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Why yes, that’s a REAL blogger responding to a tweet from little ‘ol me, and that’s not the first time! I’m in love with Twitter but that’s a whole other post.

I was supposed to start Week 3 today and have NOT been enjoying the last two days of recommended rest so I was counting down the hours.

But then… I wake up this morning with a sore ankle.

WHAT THE HAY?!

I haven’t rolled it, twisted it, or tripped over anything and it felt fine on my last run so I’m not sure what’s up. The only culprit I can think of are these babies I wore yesterday:

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That’s my best guess but I’m not totally convinced.  They’re too cute to take the blame!

I’m tempted to try my run today but I don’t want to risk further damage that could keep me off the treadmill even longer so I’m going to rest today :(

The pain isn’t getting worse but it’s not getting better either. I don’t feel pain unless I walk on it but I can still put my full weight on it.  It’s a sharp(ish) pain around my ankle bone, is there a muscle or ligament or tendon around that thing?

Whatever it is, it needs to sort itself out!

For all my anti-rest talk, I do realize how important it is.  In Cindy’s great post about training she talks about believing in the run as well as believing in the rest.  Those rest days are when our bodies recover and repair so that we’ll be able to give even more on our next run.  It feels counterproductive, but in the long run it will get you farther.

After this ankle thing I’ll be SUPER rested so I’m going to burn that treadmill up!

So tell me, how do YOU curb the run craving when you’re totally jonesing?