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Thursday, September 8, 2011

First double digit run!- reflections on chasing your DREAMS! - & pro running photos


So...you might have noticed the name of my blog is "I DREAM of running" and the url is "I DREAM 2 run".....
ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of being a runner. I remember vividly my first private track meet at age 8. It was the 400m. I won. and I LOVED it. I never forgot that feeling.

I also remember in elementary school and high school playing capture the flag, ball tag, football, soccer, basketball ...and every single one of them I loved BECAUSE they required lots of RUNNING (surprise surprise:) To this day, any sport that requires running around on a field, I LOVE! I was always the fastest and I loved it! If you haven't noticed...I was blessed (or cursed?) with a very competetive spirit. Luckily I am not competetive with those I love and never have been. I WAS blessed with a heart that truely REJOICES in others successes and loves to encourage!

Well...here we are 20 yrs later and I still Love to run....just I hadn't done it in almost 20yrs.

So....if I LOVED running so much ...why did it take til I was turning 30 to start doing it again???
I have asked myself this a lot in the last 2yrs and wanted to kick myself a few times.
For years and years a little voice inside my head said:
 " you are a runner". 
and I. didn't. listen. 

I didn't have the confidence to run or believe I could really do anything with it. I didn't know "how" to "fit it in" to my life or where to start and I was afraid to find out that maybe I wasn't good at it like I was when I was little.
Now at age 32, I am realizing that it is NEVER too late to chase a dream!
I DO lie in bed at night dreaming of running. of racing and of WINNING races. It is hard for me to put this all out there b/c there is still that VERY insecure girl deep inside that feels like I'm not good enough. That I'll never be that girl who can run a 6min pace for a 10K or even a 5K, but If I allow myself to let that voice win, I will NEVER know what "might have been". And there are SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO many things in my life and all through my teens and 20's that I let slip by b/c I lacked confidence.

Hiring Joel last year, however, took me to a level of confidence I had never before experienced and I HAVE to believe that if I can go from a 1:46 half marathon to a 1:32 half marathon in a short time with proper training, then I can go from a 1:32 to a 1:20 also. In my mind it is like a simple equation:

Proper training + dedication, hard work and PERSERVERENCE = Success!

That is how my brain works. That is why I believe in so many of you who have dreams. If you do the WORK, you will get the result! I REALLY believe that....and Life is too short to not die trying.

My whole life I have also wanted to be a motivational speaker. I was talking to Amanda this morning about how inspiring her writing is and how I am a TERRIBLE writer. Partially b/c I am lazy, impatient and just un-articulate. I think I can get away with not being articulate when I SPEAK, b/c I make up for it with enthusiasm and passion, but that doesn't really come across in my writing.....so thank you for those few of you who read my blog. I know I am a sucky writer...it's actually one of my insecurities but I'm trying.

Anyhow...I regress.
So....I guess my point in all this rambling about dreams is don't waste years and years like I have not chasing your dreams. If you are good at something or you want something bad enough, start today. go after it. The human spirit has more power than we realize and you can do ANYTHING you want in this life.

Okay...getting off my soap box and onto running stuff: numbers.......

SO...today was my first TEN MILE RUN!! yes 10 miles!!! woohoo!!
 6wks ago I was STRUGGLING big time to run 4 or 5, some days even 3 seemed too much...but here I am, into the double digits and not looking back:) Just like you ALL told me...it IS coming back and I am feeling stronger Every day!
I am still in Major recovery mode and won't be doing any hard training yet. I have ANOTHER 6 wks of just base building and I'm EXCITED about it!!

So, I dropped Erika off at Pre-school this morning and headed to meet the lovely Stephanie downtown for our run.
YESTERDAY, Joel took me on a 8.75 mile run in Forest Park and about KILLED me! the last 4 miles was all uphill...and not gradual slopes either...STEEP!, Had I not been in the middle of no where I would have quit at mile 6...but My car was still 3 miles away and I had a friggin gazelle in front of me to chase;)
SO....this morning my legs were DEAD! and I mean...like heavy weights.....so fatigued....
we started running and seriously at 2 miles in, I was thinking "this was a bad decision to try to do 10 today" .....BUT Stephanie wasn't about to let me quit....so we went on.
It was getting really hot around 10am and I ended up consuming over 20oz of water during this run! Yes, it was that hot!.......so grateful for water! Thank you God for water! I gave Stephanie her own water bottle to take along and then ended up drinking all her water too! lol...oops.

The last 2 miles I didn't think I could finish I was so tired but again, pressed on b/c someone was running with me. we finished in 1:23: XX something....it was an 8:19 overall pace which REALLY surprised me b/c I FELT like I was running 9-10min pace. I even managed to get down to a sub 8min pace the last quarter mile and push myself.

I WAS going to try to hit 45 miles again this week, BUT with that hard run yesterday and my first 10 miler today I am going ot take a rest day tomorrow or I might run just 2-3 miles so I can hit my 40 but that's it:)
I am  trying hard to learn to listen to my body and know when I need to rest:)

*and I would still LOVE your advice and opinion about Boston in my last post: here - thanks!!

After our 10 mile run, I came home to the final product of our running shoot I spoke about Here so here they are:  thanks to Craig for his fabulous work!
My favorite is the black and white at the end.

I am planning to do something special with these pics but dont' want to jinx myself so we'll see how it goes:)
(click photos to see full size)


  1. Hey girl. So glad you are running again! And so excited to see you reach those dreams!! So much potential!! Love your pics. I like yours much better than mine but I like a few of mine. The one of all three of us here...Gosh, am I wearing white tights?!!! WTH?!! Ha! I think you could go either way with Boston. Hard decision. part of me thinks you should go for it and then train your butt off in the spring but another part of me thinks you should still train your butt off but qualify with a faster time (which you SO can) and then do Boston another year. You'll always qualify for Boston..IMO. A 3:35 or better for you is in the bag baby...so follow your gut on this one. I think from what i hear from you is that you want to wait for Boston and have another chance at running a fast marathon and really showing yourself what you can run. Great talking to you today!

  2. I love reading your blog and I do not think you are a bad writer!! Your passion and enthusiasm for running inspires me every time. So happy for you that the running is going well - you rock:D When making decisions I also make a pro/con list... and from reading your post about Boston it seems like you want to wait. Way tough decision though!! oh, and I love the photos; you girls are GORGEOUS and STRONG!

  3. You know I love these pics! Dang I am jealous of your hot bod and beauty!

    I'm ELATED to hear that you have been making a great progress coming back into the game. The road ahead has so many great things for you, I just know it! Your heart is in the right place. Girl you are a runner, a mighty fierce one at that!

    Your friend Stephanie is a great training buddy, and I love that she has your back and you hers. Whoo hooo for another great mileage week!

  4. The first part of your post reminded me of this poster I saw today:

  5. First of all ... you ARE an amazing writer! Your heart and spirit comes through in every single word and THAT is so special. I for one cant wait for your posts and love watching you succeed! SO awesome about your 10 miles! I bet you felt unstoppable!

    Lastly, your pictures SIMPLY AMAZING and breathtaking! :) Have a great day!

  6. First of all I'm laughing because I wouldn't have even noticed Amanda's white legs in that pic if she hadn't drawn attention to them but yes, they're white next to yours!! I surely would have noticed your wicked abs though:)

    Second, congrats on such a great run!!! There is something about double digits. I will never forget my first 10 mile run. I was ON TOP OF THE WORLD that day. I also remember my first 10 miler coming back from injury and the feeling that I was FINALLY back on track.

    You are a gamer Nicole. No doubt. I TOTALLY believe in the dreams you have for yourself because I see you determined enough to go after them and achieve them!! Also, I think you articulated yourself VERY well here. Good writing, not terrible at ALL. Now, my unorganized bag of words is TERRIBLE-ha!

    Boston-tough call but I was in your shoes one year ago. I was qualified but coming back from injury and uncertain of whether I wanted to run it or not. Big commitment, A LOT of money, not entirely confident in my physical ability to perform at the standard I would have liked. I agree with above that you will likely BQ in every marathon you run so as far as this being a once in a lifetime chance, it's not. You could run and run very well in April, NO doubt. You would have a blast, it would be worth it. OR.....you could pour yourself into training and start chasing those goals and perhaps run VERY VERY well in 2013. You'll make the right decision:) Best of luck to you girl!!

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