Tag: Black Girls Run

No Small Task

Week 9/12 Day 1

I have less than two hundred miles to go to reach 1,000 for the year. I’ve told myself that I will complete it by my next race, which is less than thirty days away. This goal is a huge goal. Fifty miles a week is no small task. But, if I keep the right attitude, get a decent amount of sleep and eat well; it’s doable.

In order to make the goal have more meaning, I wrote names on each day of my training schedule to dedicate my miles to. In my mind, unbeknownst to these people, they are my accountability partners.

Today, I run for Candace. She is beautiful inside and out. I love her spirit. She is one of my big inspirations to start running again. The year I saw her, her daughter and her mom complete a breast cancer run together did something great for my heart. To date, it is still the most beautiful finish I’ve ever witnessed. They didn’t do it for time. They seemed to be having fun and when one seemed to slow down, the others didn’t complain, they encouraged each other to keep going. They didn’t give up. Three generations of beauty, poise and dedication.

My after run breakfast included fried green tomatoes. I imagined Mama G preparing them as my friend sat at her grandmother’s table listening to age old wisdom. Every time I hear her speak of her grandmother, I wish I had gotten the opportunity to meet her.

Week 9 Day 2

Nothing has gone as planned today. I slept horribly and when I got up, I did put on my running clothes with the intent to run after I went food shopping. By then, I was hungry. I had breakfast and ended up taking a nap. When I opened my eyes, the tv was on alerting me to a tornado watch in the area. So much for leaving the house. By 8pm, all was clear. I went to the gym and I guess others were waiting out the weather as well. This was one of the largest crowds I had seen there. The treadmills were all taken. I almost went home. It’s funny how things work out and that today, my miles are dedicated to my friend Angie. She’s the first person to put the thought of completing 1000 miles in a year in my head. She’s also a bike rider who has participated in the Tour to Tanglewood bike ride in North Carolina. Instead of throwing in the towel for the evening, tonight, I ride for Angie.

Week 9 Day 3

It’s interesting that I put the names on the calendar very randomly and the first day I really don’t feel like doing anything is the very day that I have dedicated to Pam ( affectionately known as Pusha). This woman has a heart of gold. She gives selflessly to others on and off the pavement. I pictured her showing up at my door saying, “These miles aren’t going to run themselves. Let’s go!” Go, is what I did. I knew I didn’t have time to do the six due to a previous commitment, but zero wasn’t an option. I was tired. But I got a shot gel and put my clothes on to run. My inner Pusha got it done.

Week 9 Day 4

Today, my training plan says cross train. Yeah, that’s not really going to happen. I’ve got miles to log. Last year, I convinced my friend John to complete a running program. She did Walk Before You Run with Black Girls Run in Winston Salem, NC. The goal is the same as most traditional Couch to 5k programs, so I decided to complete a 5k for John. At work, we always say we don’t want to give too much at one time….just a little extra. So I gave a little extra on the pavement; 1.9 miles extra.

I’m 25 miles away from my goal of fifty with two days left to complete. I’m 99.9% sure that won’t happen. I’ll get as close as I can. 1,000…..I’m coming for you. I guess there will be some double dipping the next two weeks.

Week 9 Day 5

It’s double digit day. Anything over ten would make me happy. To prepare for my run, last night I went to the sporting goods store to pick up Gu. I got my usual flavor, vanilla bean; and I decided to try root beer. Today I also went to get Swedish fish for the run. To my disappointment, the store I went to didn’t have them. To my surprise, when I got off work I found two bags of fish in the car. The universe aligns again. The fish were left in the car by the very person my long run was dedicated to, my sweetie. I think I have a keeper. Insert smile and heart flutter.

I knew I had to eat something before my run. I decided on sushi. I figured it would either be a great decision or a very tragic decision. I’m happy to report, it was filling enough that I was no more hungry than if I had slept all night to do the same run in the morning.

After sushi, I put together an “aid station” for my run. It consisted of Gu, water, nuun, pretzels and my fish. I put everything in a lunch box and headed to the treadmill.

The Amazing Race was on television. It was nice to watch during my run. I was happy to run the first hour nonstop. The pace wasn’t fast, but it was steady and I felt no pain. Last night, I also picked up a patellar strap. It made a world of difference in how my knee that often bothers me felt.

Seven miles in, I tried the root beer Gu. I loved it! By this time, I was bored. The Gu helped keep me going. By going, I mean moving. I was unenthused and decided to walk. It was getting late and I didn’t want to be too amped when I finally got to bed. The tv was no longer entertaining, just noise to keep me company.

Mission accomplished. Double digit miles on a Friday night, DONE!!! Over 14 miles and I looked in the mirror to realize I had forgotten to take off my eye makeup. I guess I sweat everywhere but my eyelids cause they still looked good. #POW

Week 9 Day 6

Today, I run for my on again off again runner friend. Cherelle joined me for a few runs when I started. I would see her Nike stats on Facebook from time to time and get excited to see her doing her thing. This year, she decided it was her turn to complete a race. Her first was my first, Beat the Heat 5k in Winston Salem. I was so proud of her. She kept a great pace and finished in a good time. Today, I dedicate my 3.1 to her.

The 1,000th mile

The 500 mile challenge began on December 21, 2012. The goal was to have participants log 500 miles by June 12, 2013. As participants began to get close to the 500 mile mark, it was decided to extend the mileage to 1,000 and extend the time to a full calendar year. The change allowed those who had higher miles to strive for a new goal and those who had lower miles and/or injury to not be discouraged by adding time.
The first woman to complete the I RUN This City 500/1000 mile challenge was Tammy Toliver of Greensboro, NC. I contacted Tammy to find out where she would be completing her 1,000th mile. She gave me the location and the time. I had never run that particular course and I’m not the 4:30am kind of girl. But, it was important that I was present for this milestone since I live in the same city. I woke before 4:00 to meet Tammy and other members of Black Girls Run fir a five mile run. I was told that I was “in for a treat” with this course. The treat was hills, lots of hills. Secretly and quietly, I enjoyed the challenge.
At the end of the run, Tammy was presented with a finisher certificate and other gifts.

I asked Tammy about the challenge;

IRTC:When you started the challenge, did you have a target date to complete your 1,000th mile?
Tammy:When I first started it was just 500 miles which I wanted to complete by my birthday. Then when it was changed to 500/1000 I had set my mind to complete by July.

IRTC:On average, how many miles did you run each week?
Tammy:I would say I run anywhere between 20-27 miles week

IRTC:What was your longest distance run during the challenge?
Tammy:The longest distance I ran was 13.1 miles

IRTC:How many races did you complete during the challenge?
Tammy:During challenge I completed 7 races and did 3 virtual races.

IRTC:To help prevent injury, cross training is suggested. What do you do to cross train?
Tammy:I do strength training, walking, elliptical and Zumba.

IRTC:What is your favorite refuel food/beverage?
Tammy:My favorite refuel food are raisins, bananas,chocolate milk, Gatorade

IRTC:What advice do you have for other participants of the challenge to reach his/her goal?
Tammy:Don’t give up if you haven’t reached your goal by the time frame you set. I had 2 injuries during challenge were I wasn’t allowed to run, but I just looked at it as a small setback. I just focused on getting better and knew that I was close to my goal and didn’t let that discourage me. I was only in competition with myself.

IRTC:What was your favorite thing about the 500/1000 mile challenge?
Tammy:I started the challenge to help me get in more miles and being more consistent with my running. It was also motivating to see other runners posting their mileage.

IRTC:You completed 1,000 miles in a little over eight months. What’s your next goal?
Tammy:My next goal is to complete a full marathon before my 50th birthday.

Congratulations on your accomplishment!


In my quest to take off forty pounds, I began walking.  Thirty minutes at least three times a week.  I started in the winter so most of my exercise took place on the treadmill.  I was excited the first morning the temperature was warm enough for me to walk outside.  Walking alone gave me time to clear my mind and collect my thoughts.  When I became bored, I’d call a friend to walk with me.  Well, not too many people accepted the walk with me invitation.  in fact, the most reliable walking partner lived eighty nine miles away.  When we were physically together, we walked.  When we were apart, she walked with me like most of my walking companions-via telephone.  It was great catching up with everyone on the tele-walks.  But I was ready to change it up.  I began to enjoy me solo walks less and feared quitting was soon too come.  I decided to break things up that I would jog.  This meant the conversations had to end.  I hadn’t run in years and I was sure that noone wanting to hear me panting and gasping for air.  This was fun until my knees, shins and toes began to bother me.  I pushed through the pain, but my jog went back to a walk.

After dealing with the pain longer than I should have, I went to have my feet and toes examined and ending up getting two toenails almost completely removed.  OUCH!

I had been a member of the online Facebook group for Black Girls Run as an active participant.  By active, I mean I looked at the posts and commenting sometimes.  When they posted the couch to 5k, I figured this would be a great new start.  The times and days didn’t quite work with my schedule so I wasn’t sure how often i could go.  But I knew that not going ever was no longer an option.

That first run caused me lots of pain.  I knew the root of mt pain was crappy running shoes.  If I was going to be serious about running, I needed serious running shoes.  I dropped by Off N Running for a GAIT analysis.  I left with new Mizuno’s.  This wan’t my first choice.  I wanted the pretty purple shoes that would give me the stability I needed.  But, of course, they didn’t have my size.  And waiting was not an option. What I ended up with were silvery moon shoes.  Not the cutest, but they feel so good!!!!

Holding her for the first time

May 24, 2012.  I knew she was coming home today.  She was being delivered by UPS.  They usually come early, so imagine my disappointment when I went home for lunch and she wasn’t there.  I called to track her progress in travel.  To my dismay, no information.  As the day got later, i had given up on seeing her.  When I returned to my residence after six, I was pleased to see a yellow and brown paper attached to my door, but was slightly disappointed because I was certain that the note said, “Will try again tomorrow”.  Under normal circumstances I would have cursed at what it said.  “Package is on the deck”.  Times are hard, people steal.  If my package wasn’t there, trouble was coming.  I looked, and like a baby bird place delicately, there she was.  Covered in brown with my name on her.  I opened her and held her in my arms.  From the moment I saw her, I loved her. 

Now that I had seen her, it was time to celebrate.  I went to run two miles with Black Girls Run and then dinner with a friend.  She cooked baked chicken, twice baked potatoes, green beans and rolls.  We toasted my new arrival and her new job with a few glasses of sweet red wine.