Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sniffling is not conducive to running.

For the first time since a mysterious summer flu that knocked me out of commission for a few days right before our big move, I am sick. Stuffy-headed, blocked nose, nighttime cough, body aches kind of sick. As I mentioned previously, my mom, sister and I drove up to my older sister's house on Christmas Day, where my super-adorable 16 month old niece was sniffling and sneezing and covered in baby snot. I woke up the next morning with a sore throat, and have deteriorated since. This morning was slightly better, and I'm hoping another few nights of solid 8-hour sleeping will set me right before the New Year.

In the meantime, however, I am just yearning for my sense of taste back! We were lucky enough to receive  a slew of cooking items (bakeware, serving utensils, margarita glasses, a standing mixer) for the holiday and I am dying to try each and every one of them, but not while everything tastes like, well, cardboard.

The illness has also forced me to continue my running break. I took 2 weeks off for finals/holiday travel & cooking & shopping & craziness, and now, right when I was stoked to get back into running, I'm unable to breathe through my nose and am coughing and sneezing every five minutes. Hopefully by the end of the week I'll be able to load up on cold medicine and get back on the road, because I miss it! And I want to get through Couch to 5K so I can be focused and prepared to start 1/2 marathon training.

Luckily, I anticipated a rough winter for training. My initial plan when I started running in November was to do Couch to 5K and then launch immediately into 1/2 marathon training, with juuuust enough time to finish a program and fly down to Orlando for the Disney Princess Half Marathon in March. It would have been a tight fit and would have required that I miss no days of training and accelerate both the 5K and 1/2 marathon training programs a bit. As it started to get colder, though, and when my knee started acting up and school started getting more intense with end-of-the-semester stuff, I realized this was impractical. So, I decided to focus on finishing the Couch to 5K program, even if I had to redo some weeks/miss some days due to weather and scheduling and other such nonsense. I'd maintain that level through the rough, cold months, and then in early spring I'd start a 1/2 marathon training program, with the goal of running a 1/2 in May or June. At that point I'll decide whether to just maintain the 1/2 marathon level or to really push myself and start training for a full marathon, and in January 2011 I hope to participate in either a 1/2 or full marathon during the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. This works out wonderfully because I'll be just finishing my MA, and will be ready for a long weekend in the House of the Mouse. Plus, every account I've read of running in a race at WDW has been overwhelmingly positive -- it's a generally flat course through the Disney theme parks, with entertainment at every mile. What's not to love?

I finally bought a compression shirt today at Target, so I can run outside without getting wet and freezing to death. The rain over the weekend melted all the snow that was making the sidewalks and intersections miserably impassable. Now I just need my lungs to cooperate so I can breathe properly and get out there to pound the pavement.

Tomorrow: A glimpse inside my refrigerator! Inspired by the fact that I just finally cleaned it out/scrubbed it down and it is now full of deliciousness I am about to convert to cooked deliciousness!

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