I just kept on runnin’…

When you think about how many factors have to line up in order for a person to run, it’s pretty amazing that any of us do it, let alone enjoy it. I’ve been reading Born to Run about the Tarahumara tribe that’s dubbed “super-human runners”. They don’t run in fancy $100 shoes, or eat fancy energy gels or run in fancy races with rock bands lining the finish line. They run basically to run. A Forrest Gump philosophy, if you will. The way the book is written makes you want to go run an ultra. Like, tomorrow.

I’ve been working on shortening my strides, which has done wonders for everything physically. I’m not exerting as much energy from step to step, my pace is actually better (or maybe that’s just because I’ve been running regularly for a couple weeks). I don’t feel as out of breath, and from the way it stands now, it doesn’t feel like I need new shoes even though the ones I have now (New Balance Minimus) are almost a year old.

So, today. I set out for an initial mile with Missy just around the neighborhood. Then I came home, ate breakfast with Aaron before he went to work, did a little housework while breakfast settled, and then I went back out. I thought, Oh, maybe I’ll do three more, down McCombs and back. I went down McCombs, and just kept on going. The picture above is a park about 2.1 miles from my house with a mile-long paved trail. I ran around that trail and back home, putting in a total of 5 miles after breakfast.

Now, 5 miles isn’t necessarily something to boast about when I have run 26.2 at one go before. But it’s the overall effect, how it made me feel. When I run just to run, it’s like I’m detoxing without having to drink nasty spinach drinks, or eat lemons for a week (or whatever it is that people do to “detox”). I feel all the crap, physical and emotional, just go away.

So what caused this amazing hour of my life? Maybe it was the inspiration that is Born to Run. Maybe it was the perfectly balanced breakfast of eggs, avocado slices, and toast all washed down with a Lo-Carb Monster. Maybe it was that I haven’t been eating nearly as much junk lately. Maybe it was that I just decided to relax and run for the joy of running. Maybe it was that I listened to exclusively worship music. Maybe it was the perfectly clear blue skies and sunshine on my face.

Who knows. But it felt great.

Maybe I should add “Run ultra (50k+) before I turn 30” to my bucket list…

April 25

This is my first post as a 26-year-old! Somehow the birthdays lost their ring after 21…. However, my 26th birthday brought me this lovely piece from Aaron…

And a totally awesome hair day… This won’t happen again until maybe Christmas or something.

I’ve logged 11 miles this week so far! I took Missy to McKelligon Canyon on Monday morning and we walked about 2 miles. She did better than walking around our neighborhood because there were less distractions. The car ride, however, was not so great. After dinner I went out and ran 2 miles in the neighborhood. So many people were out walking their dogs and playing outside. After 7, the sun’s behind the mountain and therefore not burning my flesh off. The temp goes down and it’s perfect “summer evening” weather. In April.

Yesterday I met Jess at the gym and did 4 miles of intervals, all uphill. Man, I kicked that treadmill in the butt. Later yesterday instead of driving to her house for dinner (it’s only 1.3 miles), I walked.

Today I rested. I’ve been watching my carb and sugar intake. I am trying to eat less refined sugars and carbs and more protein. It’s kind of my own version of “eating clean”. On my way home from “work” I stopped at the gas station to get gas and totally resisted the urge to get DQ. Go me. Even after just a week of watching my refined sugars and carbs, I want it less.

This whole waiting-to-have-kids thing is making me be waaay more accountable to getting and staying fit. One of the big reasons I lost weight in the first place was to get healthy before we had kids. Well, now that we’re waiting longer than we expected, I need to keep up a healthy lifestyle for longer. I want to run and workout when I’m pregnant, have a healthy delivery, and bounce back as soon as possible after giving birth. Anyway, I try not to think about it too much as it’s in the future, but it’s definitely a motivator for staying healthy.

This is kind of random, but… I’M GOING TO HONDURAS!!! I went to the meeting at church the other night. We’re going at the end of August to help with an orphanage and school we support as a church. I’ve had the itch to travel internationally for.. well.. since my last trip (Honduras in 2008), so I’m really excited. (I never got the chance to visit Aaron in Korea….silly Army… and $1700 plane tickets.)

Anyway. Life is good. I can’t imagine going back to such a stressful job… ever. Unless it were absolutely necessary. Missy and I only have a week left to party like there’s no tomorrow before Husband Man comes home… we might even do some yoga or POP Pilates.

>On the eve of a quarter of a century

>

April 22, 1986, is my birthday. Tonight at 2:34 AM (yes, I know the exact time; my mom has no problem rehashing my birth story over and over again, haha) I will turn 25 years old. And guess what? My attitude is: Bring. It. On. That was my attitude for last year too and it sure was an eventful year!
I am very content with passing this milestone. Not only because there’s the prospect of lower car insurance, but because of what I’ve accomplished in my life. My life rocks. Just sayin’. The only way it could be better is if my husband were here with me, or I with him. 
I’m proud of how hard I’ve worked in my life to get where I’m at now. And three years ago, Aaron and I joined each other on that journey. I worked my tail off in school and in college to be successful at something, and I am. I love saying, “I’m a teacher”. I’m proud of all the hours I spent in class, writing papers, and in practicum. I’m proud of the two years I taught high school; I’m not sure they could have been better. I like finding a part of my identity in education because I know it’s a profession I will always have to some capacity.
While I am not a mother yet, and honestly my whole life I thought I’d be one by now, I’m content with this decision we’ve made to wait a little while longer. I’m excited to finish out our twenties as just… us. (Unless, of course, God blesses with a child anyway).
I’m proud that I’ve made good decisions the last two years while Aaron’s been away. It could have been very easy for me to slip back into old habits of depression and pity parties. Instead, I grabbed life by the horns and made some positive changes that have resulted in a more mature, more patient, more compassionate, more understanding, and more relaxed Elizabeth. And I’m sure everyone is grateful for that. 😉
Tomorrow I have the day off. Easter is hardly ever this late, but I’m not complaining. It’s not every year I get to sleep in and then go out for an awesome steak dinner on my birthday! (Thanks Mom and Daddy!) [Yes, I did mean to say Daddy. :)]
So, tomorrow I’m looking forward to:
some of this:
dreaming about this:
seeing some of this:

having some of this for dinner:
some of this after dinner:

and the best part… talking with a certain someone: