Who’s up for a Marathon?

The 2nd Asheville Marathon is about 21 weeks away on March 16, 2013.  It is run on the grounds of the beautiful and behemoth (8,000 acre!) Biltmore Estate and is a Boston Marathon Qualifier race (for 2015). Here is a link to the qualifying times.  The course is a mix of paved and dirt trails so it’s easy on the joints along with being fairly flat to rolling.  This is a great 1st marathon and in an amazing location during a great time of year!

I was invited to be an Asheville Marathon Ambassador which means I’m advertising the race, signing people up (use my name :), getting a local Birmingham training group together with the help of some experienced marathoner friends (thanks Donna & maybe Dan!), blogging about race nutrition/injury prevention, and hopefully running the thing in 5 months.  Your first question is probably, “WHY would you want to torture yourself like that?”  If you know me well or even if you don’t, you know that I like to push myself and experience new things.  You also probably know that I have struggled to stay injury-free since I started running/biking/swimming again 2.5 years ago.  So although I’m not healed I am a woman on a mission to learn to cope with almost constant pain and maintain an active lifestyle, while hopefully inspiring others to do the same.

My hope is to inspire others to set goals, find support, and achieve those goals.  You’ll never know if you can until you TRY.  So who’s up for a marathon?!

power of the mind

We will begin training this Monday, October 21, 2013, with an informational meeting/email on Sunday or Monday.  There will be 2-3 different pace groups, one of which will be doing run/walk for the LSD – long slow distance runs on the weekend.  We will give out training schedules and try to meet/run as a group 1-2x/wk (at least for the LSD weekend run).  I’m setting up a Facebook page so we can share our strengths and struggles along the way as well as to maintain some accountability.

My pacing group will be using Jeff Galloway’s Marathon Training Plan which is a gradual build of mileage with short week day runs for those of us who are either first-time marathoners and/or injury prone. I am so fortunate as to be BOTH.

As another incentive to participate, we will invite runners to raise money for a cause.  Those participating from Baptist Church of the Covenent will choose a ministry to fundraise for such as the Capital Campaign, Youth Program, SouthTown Leadership,etc.  One way to do this is ask someone to sponsor 1 to 26.2 miles of your race OR commit an amount to each mile you train leading up to race.  We will keep a log of each person’s miles so that you and your sponsors can see how far you’ve come and how far you’ll go during the next 5 months!

Contact me if you’re interested in joining the group.  When you register for the race, please mention my name so our group gets credit.  Let’s bring a big ‘Bama group to the Mountains!

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Training for an Ironman…sorta

IM yoga tattoo
Well, actually a 70.3 or Half-Ironman, but “half” sounds so second rate. Some half-marathoners are pushing for a rename to “Pikermi” which is name of the city in Greece that is in the middle of the original route Pheidippides took from Marathon to Athens (which was less than 26.2 miles by the way), but what would you rename a Half-Ironman?

Anyways, I digress. I have been lusting over Ironman triathlons since I was a kid, watching the Kona World Championships every October around my birthday (or December when it viewed). I researched the IronKids races that were highlighted on some kid’s bread packaging to no avail because my mother was already overwhelmed with hauling us from softball to tennis to gymnastics to golf to …. the list goes on. Plus I didn’t think I had a great place to ride my cheap bike (although I lived in the woods and had miles of trails!) and my swimming was average (goggles and a swim cap might have helped). Still I dreamed of the guts and glory, ever the athlete seeking bigger challenges.

Fast forward twenty years to a physically broken 28 yr old under chiropractic care three times a week still yearning to regain her younger years and athletic feats. So as my 29th birthday and the 29th Ironman World Championships in Kona approached, my doctor encouraged more swimming and okayed my desire to start cycling with my partner. Easy cycling, no aero, no hills, short distance. You can guess how that went down – 2 weeks later and a 25 mile race later 🙂 Been hooked since! But that wasn’t what re-invigorated the Ironman itch. One day while swimming endless laps of front crawl, breast and backstroke, I realized how I raced everyone swimming in adjacent lanes. I missed competing and challenging myself and was feeling renewed and hopeful with my steady improvements under Dr. H’s care. By the time of the October Ironman, the memories of IronKids and Ironman Kona were flooding back every time I got on my bike or went for a swim. Maybe I could do this, but could I ever run again with my history of ruptured lumbar discs, shin splints, tendonitis, etc.? Would 2012 would be the year? Not only of my 30th birthday but of my athletic reawakening?

LR BB Swim

January 11th was the first run of many to come….and April 28th was the Beach Blast Triathlon in Mexico City Beach, FL, my 1st! Despite my initial swim panic after a mass start in a new wetsuit with an ocean swim, I was able to finish in 1:48:28 placing 5th in my age division. I got to see my partner at various points during the race which bolster my spirits and made my finish sweet…even though I knew no one and no one knew me when I crossed the finish. That has changed since joining Vulcan Triathletes as their new secretary and the Birmingham Track Club. The camaraderie along with the plethora of experienced athletes, doctors, physical therapists, massage therapists, yoga teachers, etc. has made my journey and decision to Tri- harder and farther and much more pleasant and safe undertaking. One month before my 30th birthday, I finished my first half-marathon, the Talladega 21000, in under 2:15, with a good friend who has used running to lose almost 100 lbs and heal all his health problems. This stuff transforms your life – mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally!

So it is in that vein that I am committing to the lengthy but doable training for a 70.3 race this year. Definitely Augusta 70.3 because many Vulcan Triathletes and Birmingham locals race it. Plus the swim is downstream in a wetsuit – I can float to the transition if I get panicked! I will race the Beach Blast Triathlon (Olympic distance – 1st tri- at this distance) in late April again as a tune-up/season opener. If it goes well then an earlier 70.3 may be on the horizon.

Note: I do not race just for me though. I race for those who have risen from their own fiery transformations via addiction/abuse/injury/etc., for the orphaned kids I worked with in South Africa, for the SouthTown community in Birmingham, for the church on the corner where “All Are Welcomed,” for my deceased father who never saw my healing and my adulthood, for my unborn niece/nephew, and for my dear grandmother who taught me how to cook and how to love everyone.

…and I race for you in hopes that you might be inspired to reach for the goals and dreams you felt would always JUST BE DREAMS. Time to create some realities.

 

Time to Tri- with Me!

triathlete belly tattoo

Beginner’s Yoga Starts February 6th

Tomorrow, Wednesday, February 6th from 12n-1p, is the first class of a beginner’s hatha yoga and meditation series.  Class will be held at Birmingham Yoga in the Lakeview/Avondale area of Birmingham.

No experience with yoga or meditation required. Only willingness and an open mind.

We will go through basic movements and awareness practices that will not only promote physical flexibility and strength but mental sharpness and relaxation as well.

Signup online via Birmingham Yoga or just drop-in when you can.

Namaste.
Lyndsey

Girls On The Run! in Birmingham

Fall registration is open for Girls on the Run-Birmingham.

Locations:  the Levite JCC, Highlands School, Homewood Park, Shades Cahaba Elementary School, Avondale Elementary School (where I’m coaching :)), YMCA Youth Center, & YWCA Family Center.

This program is volunteer coached & supported by locals interested in the mission to “inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.” 

GOTR uses the power of running to provide girls in grades 3-5 with the tools to:

    • Celebrate their bodies
    • Honor their voices
    • Recognize their gifts, and
    • Activate their personal power

GET INVOLVED! HOW?