Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Little Help, Please?

so yesterday i made a bold move ~ i hired a coach.  i've been running for the past month and a half here in Gillette, Wyoming, and although i feel like i'm getting stronger and i'm running easier, i feel like i need to be pushed a bit if i'm going to finish my 100-miler in September.  the skiing and ski touring that i did for the month and a half before i came to Wyoming really helped me to get through my nagging injuries from last fall and helped to get me stronger, but now it's time to get a little more serious about my running if i'm going to meet my goals.

maybe i'm being a bit hard on myself, too, but i just don't feel like i'm making much progress over the last few weeks.  i tend to put the dogs on a leash tied around my waist, and although they don't really pull me much once we get going (the first 5 or 10 minutes are a bit of a struggle, as the three of us jockey for positions and figure out who is going to run where, without the leash wrapping around any one participant's feet... ) i feel like i just lope along at my comfortable 10 minute-mile pace and never really push myself.  i don't have a reason to push myself.

maybe i'm also hard on myself because i am friends with some really world-class runners and put pressure on myself that i never was able to get myself to run up to their level, even though at times i thought i had it in me.  i'm also friends with another group of ultra-runners who are middle-of-the-pack finishers, and i really enjoy their company and going out on runs with them.  i feel somewhat caught between the elites and the finishers, wondering what my true potential is.

sometimes we just need more of a reason to push ourselves and yesterday that's what i got.  i was talking with the clinic manager because she is trying to start a walking program with a friend of hers, and i realized that if a person has someone else depending on them to get out and reach a certain goal, one is more likely to be motivated and push oneself when necessary to attain that goal.

so i signed up with Ian Torrence, who is an amazing ultra-runner and will be doing online coaching for me.  how did i choose to go with Ian and not one of the other ultra-coaches that i know?  i've met him several times over the years at races and always found him to be easy to talk with.  i enjoy reading his blog and find he has always had a very down to earth outlook on running and from what i gather from life in general.  he also has a cool dog.

when i saw the rates on his coaching webpage, my heart was in my throat.  i thought to myself, "am i really worth spending that much money on myself?"  and i immediately answered my own question.  yes:  i'm worth it.  i've been a "pretty good" athlete all of my life.  my friends and family probably have more confidence in my abilities than i have in myself.  i feel like at any one time i could get up and do whatever activity i wanted to, without too much of a struggle ~ activities that many other people would never even dream of doing.

so the goal is that after three months of coaching from Ian, i will be pushed, and i will see progress.  i'm sure it's going to be an experience full of personal growth, both physically and mentally.  i'm really pretty psyched about it.


photos today are from my 6 mile run with the dogs, in our window of good weather today (in-between thunderstorms) and the quarter horses who like to greet us and race us along our route.  the weather was really challenging this week (ie:  rainy, yesterday with lightening) and i did not reach my mileage goal for the week because of it.  i'm really looking forward to the three day weekend and the nice weather that is in the forecast.

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