Tag: half marathon

Give Me Strength

Week 11

Like the final 5k of every half marathon I’ve completed and the last .5 of every 5k, this week is about mental toughness and the tenacity to finish what I started. I put more thought into how the names were placed on the calendar this week. I was very strategic in assigning each day of dedicated miles. In real time, I’ll need to log sixty miles in order to guarantee that I will be at 994 miles when I arrive at the start line of my race and have the necessary energy to cross the finish line. Lord, I ask for strength and wellness. Water intake, food consumption and adequate rest will be imperative to get me through.

Day 1

I’m excited about my running dedication today. This person is resilient, determined and fabulous. Today, I’m running for my niece; Michelle. I went to one of my favorite spots. I set my intervals and was doing well for the first few miles. My shins started to hurt, indicative of a need for new shoes. I think I’m going to run the soles off the Sauconys I’m wearing. The weather was perfect and everything went well. I thought of seeing Michelle post on Facebook that things are often tough. Usually the next post shows that she has pushed through. I did the same and ran one extra mile.

Day 2

This is my last scheduled double digit day although I’m sure there will be at least one more. My run is dedicated to my Dad (RIP).

It had been a few weeks since I’d run at this park. It quickly became my favorite place as this was the first real time I felt like I was enjoying all that fall has to offer. The temperature was perfect and the leaves were gorgeous.

I parked my car in a different place this time to keep it fresh. The first mile, I intended to use as a warm up and time to commune with my thoughts. Shortly before I reached the first mile, the coffee I treated myself to was ready to leave me. I despise the thought of a porta pottie but it was the better option, over leaving. There was a huge playground near and I thought surely a place that catered to children would have restrooms. Wrong. At 1.5, I almost became that runner we’ve all seen who darts in the woods to find a private tree. My inner diva wouldn’t allow it. At mile two, I was relieved to see a big blue box. After my brief meeting, I was on my way and able to run comfortably. I was taking it all in. I enjoyed hearing my feet crunch the leaves beneath my feet. My pace was steady and I felt amazing.

I stopped a few times to take pictures. But for the most part, I ran the whole time. I had turned around to return to my car and happened upon a statue. I had passed it several times before on my treks through the park, but I had never gone close enough to really see it. I was once again shocked at how the universe works. Right in the middle of the marble slab was the U.S. Coast Guard seal. My Dad was a Coastie. I took this as his wink from Heaven that he approved of my efforts. I spent a minute there and was on my way. Still heading in the direction of my car, I saw a face in the distance that looked familiar. As I got closer, I realized it was Kristin, whom I had run with in the past. I decided to join her for a few and made a u-turn. I was happy for the push. Had I not seen her, my run would have turned to intervals. After running a nice distance, it was time for me to turn around. I wished her a good remainder of her run and well wishes on her upcoming race in Puerto Rico.

Upon my return to the parking lot, I heard roosters crowing and monkeys “talking”. I thought this to be extremely odd sounds for a park in the middle of the city. I laughed when I realized it had slipped my mind that I had parked in front of the zoo.

Day 3

I didn’t feel like it….at all. I was scheduled to do five. Even though this should’ve been a pretty quick and easy run, I didn’t want to do it. I looked at the calendar to find the day dedicated to my nieces and nephews. I knew that five wasn’t happening, instead; I opted for .1 for each of them. At 2.4 miles, I was glad to be done and glad that I didn’t have any more nieces or nephews.

I’m sure I’ll wish I had done more later in the week to make the weekend easier. But what I gave was honestly more than I had. Getting closer to fifty.

Day 4

I opened my eyes and checked the weather. The temperature had taken a nose dive. The high was going to be twenty degrees lower than yesterday. In the darkness, I headed to the gym. It was empty so I turned on my music. I liked the time alone and hoped that my hour would be in solitude. Today was dedicated to my son. I pumped out those miles in his honor. I thought about how many miles I would do. I considered one for every day he’s been gone. When I realized how many that would actually be, I opted to try to get as close to the amount of days I’d have to see him.

Day 5

It’s Halloween. Holidays always excite me. Although I’m tired. I will get my Nike+ badge.

Another day for the male child. I was mentally and physically drained. I had gotten some bad news yesterday and I really wanted to throw in the 1,000 mile towel. My mind and body got together and decided they didn’t want to do any miles today. I knew that I wouldn’t let him give me excuses or a pass to do nothing. I didn’t do what I had planned but I got in a few miles. His absence from the home has been difficult, but every time anything brings me down; the thought of him encouraging me gives me all that I need.

Day 6

Today, I run for my sister. I was mentally back on track. But after completing over 165 miles for the month, I knew I needed to give my body a break. As a nurse, my sister would encourage me to listen to my body.

I got in a power walk because I realized that even though I wouldn’t get in the eight I was anticipating, anything I did would be miles closer to my goal.

Hurry Up & Wait

Week 5/12 Day 1

Yesterday, I was excited to look at my training plan and see just five miles for today. I was even more excited to look at the remainder of the week and discover a day with two miles.
Weeks one through three, my average pace for the entire week had been consistent. Last week, it dropped down a bit. It doesn’t bother me too much as I realize that waking up in three different states for three consecutive days was a bit out of the normal for my training. I got most of the mileage in and I’m ok with that.
This morning when the alarm sounded, I had lost a bit of my enthusiasm. I got up and got dressed and then I got back in the bed. This was supposed to be for five minutes. But when I finally got up, enough time had passed for me to have completed two miles.
I think it is really sinking in that I have put in 125 miles of training for a race that I will potentially not even have the chance to run. I’m awaiting information to confirm a graduation date. In the event that this actually occurs, I’ve been looking for a replacement race either near me or in the city of graduation. Doing so was causing me a bit of anxiety. And there honestly is no need (yet) to look for a race when I’m unsure of the date. Gotta love the concept of “hurry up and wait”. I should be more clear of my plans within the next ten days.
Because I have also set my goal of one thousand miles this year, I still need to get in my miles. I will continue to train as if the race will happen.

Week 5 Day 2

Today, I was scheduled for eight miles. Since I had to go to Greenville, I decided I’d go to the trail there. It was nice to be somewhere different. It made for an interesting run. When I started, it was already over seventy degrees so I knew I would be in for a challenge. The waterfalls were breathtaking. Of course, I stopped a few times to take pictures. There were mile markers along the route. I saw one that said mile 35. I wondered the total distance of the trail. I think one day, I will attempt to complete it……maybe. If I find out it’s over fifty miles, I take back the previous sentence.
Parts of the trail was lonely. But I enjoyed the serenity of it all. It was just what the doctor ordered. The cool breeze, the water, the flowers, the people I encountered along the way; all made my run more enjoyable. I look forward to doing it again next week….but I have to go earlier so I can complete better intervals. Today’s intervals were changed to run in the shade and walk in the sun. But, I got it done!!

Week 5 Day 3

Today was a make up. I was supposed to do six yesterday and rest today. I overslept and didn’t feel like running when I got off at seven so I decided to switch the days. My run today had three goals; 1. Complete the mileage 2. Run for an hour 3. Don’t stop until sixty minutes have been completed. This would be my longest time running without stopping in a long time. I was on the treadmill and there was a lady on the elliptical. Yes, I was racing her. In my mind, it didn’t matter how long she planned to be there; I wasn’t going to stop before she did. This was a fun game for me to play. I wonder if she knew she was a contestant in my running game. At about thirty minutes, she ended her workout. I was closing in on the three mile mark and knew I’d have to push to finish in an hour. It didn’t happen. At 59:59 I wasn’t quite at five miles yet. But I still felt accomplished because I didn’t stop. A little over an hour later, Nike congratulated me on completing my miles. After patting myself on the back, I got excited because I know tomorrow’s run is only two miles.

Week 5 Day 4

I was excited for three reasons about this morning’s run. The weather was perfect, I could run outside and I would finish in less than thirty minutes. Everything was perfect. The sky was completely dark. The only illumination I had was provided by the street lights. It was just me, the sound of my footsteps and my breathing. For a moment, the thought of my twelve mile long run entered my head. I quickly shook it away to try to focus on the current run. My pace wasn’t as fast as I’d hoped it would be, it was consistent with my reality.
Another training run in the books. I’m only six miles away from 100 for the month. WOW!!!!

Week 5 Day 5

It’s a twelve mile kind of day. My running partner and I started our run before sunrise. For safety purposes, we altered our route for more light and visibility. We decided on a 1:1 interval. This gave us approximately a fifteen minute mile. It was a little slower than I wanted but I enjoyed not having to run it solo. At about mile six, she began to feel bad so we cut the run short (about 7.5 miles). Part of me was ok with that since I’m no longer officially training for anything. But the other half of me was determined to finish. When she dropped me off, I went in the house to refill my water bottles and decided to run laps around the parking lot. This was tedious to say the least. I dislike running circles more than I dislike the treadmill. But the weather was too perfect to go inside. Shortly before I reached the ten mile mark, my phone died. I felt defeated as I knew I didn’t want to run miles that weren’t being tracked. I prayed that the miles I logged would appear once my phone recharged.

I went inside, yet again; to get my phone some juice. I knew I had less than an hour more to run and fifty percent should be enough to do it. This was turning out to be the worst run ever. Again, the waiting time allowed the “you’re not training for anything” thought to creep into my head. I turned the phone back on and was happy to see that Nike+ hadn’t let me down and my mileage was still there. I still wasn’t 100% sure I was going to finish my run. I put the phone down and it rang. On the other end was my son calling. I hadn’t heard his voice in ten days. He was in great spirits and when I hung up the phone, I knew that I would complete my run. We’re a house of finishers.

It took me 3:18 to finish (much slower than my slowest half marathon time) but I finished!!

Mind Over Matter

Week 2/12 Day 1

I felt extremely refreshed after my rest day. I got out of bed with the expectation of an amazing run. I parked my car at one of my normal running spots but decided I’d alter my route to keep it interesting. What I found when I turned left instead of going straight were beautiful brick houses in a neighborhood still being developed. I pictured myself living in one of the houses. The other thing I found on my newly explored route….hills. I was half happy and half sad at my discovery. I had to laugh at the irony of it all. I had just asked members of the local running group where I could find some hills to run. Leave it to me to find them on my own. This was a great start to my second week.

Week 2 Day 1

Today’s run would be the second longest of the week. Six miles. One mile warm up, three miles 4:1 intervals, easy two mile cool down. I was excited about this run. I had gotten a good night of rest, I was properly hydrated and I was ready to rock it. It was already really warm and sunny when I got up so I took my run to the gym. I did my first mile with ease. The intervals went well. I was giving 100 percent. When I was down to just two miles to go, I was elated to have done such a great job but annoyed that my app hadn’t given any updates. I looked at my phone and my spirit was shattered. My app read 1.68 miles. I could’ve cried and I wanted to just end the run. I’m usually the positive one in the group, the one that gives everyone else the brighter side. Now, I needed to be that person for myself. I told myself, at least the treadmill had calculated it. I was upset but I kept going. Week 2 Day 1 had some technical issues but it was done.

Week 2 Day 3

Easy breezy was what I had in my mind. I could knock five miles out in a little over an hour. It was mind over matter. I struggled to get out of bed. I knew today was about distance and not speed. I just needed to get it done. I kept laying there and it kept getting later. Wednesday is not the day to play around with time, because I don’t have much extra to spare. For the past year, my Wednesdays have been filled for thirteen hours each week. The option of after work just isn’t an option. Just when my own voice was trying to assure myself that I’d figure out how to get it done much later today or make it up on Sunday, another voice came chiming from the bathroom that said, “You’re going to kick yourself later if you miss this run.” Sometimes it’s nice to get a second opinion. Aside from the race training, my goal of one hundred miles this month is just ten miles and three days away. As much as I would’ve preferred to lay there for another hour, I was happy to just go and be done.

Week 2 Day 4

What comes in a close second to rest day? A short miles day. I was dancing a jig in my head at the thought of “just” three miles. We started at 5:30 and enjoyed great run chat. I was surprised to see so many people out so early. I was also happy that I had on my headlamp. Places that were usually lit had lights out and was dark. After finishing my three miles, I went to fill up my tank. While I was pumping I synced my run an realized I was less than 1.5 miles away from reaching my 100 miles in August goal. What does a runner do when they’re that close and still have three hours until work? They go and tackle that mile plus. Thirteen more miles to complete training this week. I’m tired just thinking about it.

Week 2 Day 5
I didn’t have anywhere pressing to be until later in the day, so I slept in longer than usual. I got out of bed refreshed and ready to tackle my five miles. When I arrived at the trail, I started my app and was more excited. I had one less mile to do than I thought. Win!!!! I decided I’d run the entire time to get to the turnaround. This worked well. In my mind, the quicker I finished, the sooner I’d be able to shop for a bridesmaid dress. After the turnaround, my mind shifted gears. I was initially so focused on my turnaround that I ignored the temperature. I looked at my phone and realized that the temperature was increasing. As it went up, my energy and my water went down. I was happy to be closer to finish than to start. I got back to the car completely on E. No energy and no water. It was too darn hot. My cool shower was amazing. Sleeping in has been nice and necessary. I haven’t gotten in bed before midnight any this week. I’ve been staying up with my son who is leaving for the Navy next month. One day I’ll be training for a race in whatever city he’s stationed. If I’m lucky, he’ll even run it with me. Probably ahead of me, but shhhhhh, don’t tell him I said that. Any time we discuss running, I swear I can beat him.

Week 2 Day 6
Eight miles. I can do this. It has been quite a few months since I’ve done this distance. But I was mentally prepared to do it. I was happy one of my sole sisters decided to join me. She hadn’t gotten much sleep the night before and warmed me that this probably wouldn’t be a fast run. I was ok with that. Today, Nike told me to “just do it”. We took to the trail just after sunrise and had great conversation along the way. After 4.5 miles, we had run the entire length of the trail. She decided she was done for the day and I continued for round two. I was excited to go about a mile down to be greeted by a woman who has seen me on the first trip. She commended me for hitting the trail a second time. It was a little lonely running by myself but by this time, more people had come out so I wasn’t really alone. I did notice everyone wearing Clemson orange. I’m a fan of college sports but don’t have a favorite team. I was told in North Carolina I needed to choose a team and be loyal. When I was in Durham, my choices were Duke, NC State or Carolina. When I was in Greensboro, football season meant I’d hear “AGGIE Pride” yelled throughout the city. I never did pick a team. I usually tell people I like whoever is winning. Lol. Eight miles later, I was done and anticipating my Sunday rest day.

Rock n Roll Savannah or bust

Week 1/12 Day 1
It’s the first day of training and I’m pumped. I went to the trail and it was quiet since it was the first day of school. Mentally I was ready to have an amazing first day. I’m using Nike Coach for my training plan and for some reason, the mileage wasn’t showing on my app. I took a good guesstimate that I was supposed to do four miles. The weather was near perfect. Halfway through the run, it started to sprinkle. I had hoped to run fast enough that I wouldn’t bet drenched. I did get rained on but there was no downpour. My physical body matched my mental body and I killed my first day of training.

Week 1 Day 2
I contacted Nike technical support to assist with my app. I was told tsso uninstall and reinstall and the projected mileage should show up. Once I did this, I discovered that I was 1.5 miles over what I needed to run on day one. Big win.
Today, I was set to do five miles (a one mile warm up, three miles of fartleks and a one mile cool down).
I arrived at a different trail just after 6pm. I started my warmup with a positive attitude and a goal to finish in an hour. Shortly after the run began, I started experiencing pain in my shins. I stopped to try to stretch them out. That provided relief for a short while. I knew there would be nothing fun about today’s run. At 2.5 miles, Nike told me I was halfway. I grumbled knowing I still had 2.5 miles to go and at my slower than usual pace, also another thirty minutes. At 1.99 miles to go. Nike gave me another distance indicator. Soon after, a bug flew in my nose. I tried to think of a lady like way to extract it, but nothing came to mind. Holding one nostril down, I looked like men I’ve seen in every outdoor sport; I blew hard and just as he flew in….he flew out. It was disgusting but I felt better.
This run reminded me why I prefer to go early in the morning. The heat and humidity were just two additional factors to add to the misery of this run. My ice cold water had adjusted to my body and the outside temperature and only provided relief of being wet. It was no longer cool or refreshing.
At the end, I don’t believe I can recall the last time I was so excited to be done!

Week 1 Day 3
I had another five miles slated for training. When the clock rang, I got up to turn it off and returned to bed. Initially, I told myself I’d lay there for five more minutes. After ten minutes, I decided I wanted to stay in bed and would hit the treadmill after work. Forty five minutes after the alarm sounded, a voice from the bathroom realized my eyes were open and said, “I thought you were running this morning.” I replied. “I changed my mind. I’ll go tonight.” As I heard the shower, I played my day in my head. Conference call 9am. Work 10 – 7:30. Weekly virtual chat with my girlfriends 8pm. There really wasn’t another hour available in the day. So, I got my achy bones out of bed and dressed for my five mile….extremely happy that Nike told me to do my miles easy.
It was already warm since I had waited to go. After the heat of yesterday, I decided to take it to the mill. There was only one person in the gym. It seemed like more, as she insisted on continuing her conversation. I was happy when the person on the other end had to go. All I had to hear after that was the sounds of the machines and our footsteps.
Cross-training tomorrow. And I’m glad about it!

Week 1 Day 4
Cross training was scheduled for today. My activity of choice, yoga. After three days of running, I needed something restorative. Each pose felt fabulous. I ended with my legs propped up on the wall: Viparita Karani. Namaste

Week 1 Day 5
After a day off from running, completing the ALS ice water challenge and a good night sleep, I was stoked about today’s training run. My plan called for an easy four miles with the last mile being faster than the others. My normal displeasure with the treadmill turned around in my mind, as I figured by increasing the speed on the machine, I could successfully accomplish my training run. I started with an extremely easy pace and every five minutes, I increased the speed. With each step, I actually felt stronger. When Nike told me I was at the halfway point, I was still pumped and even though the speed kept increasing, I was surprised to discover that my energy wasn’t decreasing. I was even more surprised that I pushed myself to run the entire time I was on the treadmill. I would say today’s run has been my favorite run in a long time….even though it was on the treadmill. Next up, eight miles.

Week 1 Day 6
It was dark when I arrived at my run location at 6am. My running partner and I ran in the “city” that was illuminated by the street lights. The crescent moon was a sight to see. And just as that sight began to disappear, we were greeted by the beauty of the sunrise. Two miles in, we could see downtown. During a walk break, I said; “One day we’re going all the way downtown.” She unenthusiastically agrred. I knew she was tired and on a great day she would’ve jumped for joy at what’s to come. What she doesn’t know is that I intend for our one day to go all the way downtown to be in no more than four weeks. I hope she doesn’t read this. Lol. As we approached our cars, I decided to take the long way around. Adding a half loop around the parking lot put us at five miles. We got in our cars; her to go home and me to complete the remaining three miles. The temperature had crept up almost ten degrees from the time we began. At eighty degrees, hazy, hot and humid; I opted to finish inside on the treadmill.

Week 1 is done. I’ve experienced lots of emotions already. But, I’m keeping my head in the game. Although this training plan is more challenging than those I’ve used in the past, I’m excited to see the end result. And on the seventh day….I will rest!
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Let the training….begin

It’s about that time. I have another half marathon in less than ninety days. Everything about training will be different. I’m training in a new state, South Carolina. I’ve switched shoes. This time I’m wearing Saucony Omni 12. I went to a new running shoe store and had the soles cut. This technique is supposed to give more flexibility. I’ve worn the shoes for one 5k and quite a few runs. So far, so good. I’m changing my training plan. This time, I’ll be using the Coach on the Nike+ app. This training plan will have me running five times a week. Four days of running is the max I’ve done previously for training. The one thing that won’t be changing is my training partner. Georgia will get to be my ride or die again for the next twelve weeks. This little stuffed frog always brings a smile to my face. I’m sure she’ll be happy to train for a race in her namesake state. Rock n Roll Savannah….see you soon.

Stay tuned for weekly updates on my training.

Chasing 12

I decided a few days ago that I wanted to complete the NC Half Marathon at Charlotte Motor Speedway. I wanted to do one more race with my sole sisters Pam and Kat before moving to South Carolina. Since we had completed the Princess Half two weeks ago, this race would qualify us for half fanatic. What made this race different and special was that until three days prior, only two people knew I was doing it.

I made a poster that listed all of our races attached to the word “TOGETHER” that I planned to carry with me. I normally plan everything out (travel, lodging, outfit) weeks in advance. With quick thinking, I decided to tell my running big sister I was going. She responded with, “cool, I’ll go volunteer and you can ride with me.” I then needed someone to pick up my race packet since there was no pick up the day of the race. She suggested one of the ladies we run with, who gladly agreed to get it for me.

The night before was mentally stressful because I had worked a long day and was exhausted, I had to do laundry and it was daylight savings. I was terrified my clocks wouldn’t update themselves and I would oversleep. I laid my clothes out and got in bed around 10. I set two clocks to 3:34. At 1:30, I woke and looked at the clocks. I quickly drifted back to sleep. At 3:30, my phone rang. It was my wonderful partner calling to wake me. It was a pleasant and unexpected wake up call. Within minutes, the alarms sounded. I got in the shower and then dressed before heading to meet my ride.

There was no traffic going to the race. When we arrived shortly before 6, we got a great parking space and walked to the expo area. Pam and Tonia were taking care of volunteer duties so I stayed inside. When they found me, I was stretching. Tonia joked about me doing cheer team stretches. That’s when I informed her of my surprise and that I was running. Shortly before 7, Tammy arrived with my race bib. Soon after meeting her, we spot Pam and Kat coming in. They walk up and didn’t realize I was standing there until they were really close. The looks on there faces when they saw me was awesome. The smiles got bigger when they realized I wasn’t just there to cheer, but to run.

We headed to the START line and shared some pre-race chat before it was “go” time. My goal was finish in 2:45 minutes which would be a distance record for me. To do this, I knew I needed to be between the mile 12 and mile 13 pacers. I quickly caught up to the 12 minute mile pacer and actually stayed ahead of him for the first three miles around the race track. The thought of 2:40 seemed doable. Just after the 5k, he came up from behind and passed me during one of my walk intervals. I kept him within a sprint distance for the next two miles. Around mile 5, we were at a turnaround and the 13 minute mile pacer was on the other side of the wall. She high dived me as we passed. At this point, she appeared at least a half mike behind me, which put me at about a 12:15 pace. At the 10k mark, the 12 minute pacer started to get a little more ahead of me. In my mind, if I could see him, I could catch him. Around mile 8, a steep hill jumped out of nowhere. My interval timer was on run. I told myself I could tackle it and picked up my pace a bit. Halfway up, my legs told me they hated me and refused to go anymore. I felt slightly defeated. Looking around, I realized everyone around me felt the same way about the hill. No one was running. There were drummers at the top of the hill. And even the sound of the drums couldn’t get me up that hill running. I could still see the pacer in the distance. But by mile 9, my dream of maintaining 12 minutes and the pacer…..were out of view.

I decided that once the stretch goal was out of play, I needed to focus on the other goal. I pushed to run with my interval timer. Even though my run was getting slower, I still ran when it said run. At mile 10, two ladies running beside me were chatting away. I was glad I was running alone, as I was running out of steam and didn’t think I had the energy for a conversation. One of them said, “Doesn’t it seem like the miles are going by quickly?” I wanted to clothesline her. As my answer to the question she hadn’t asked me was a screaming, “NO!” I needed those two to get away from me and was happy when my whistle sounded indicating I could walk. Mile 11 was rough. I had been awaiting my second wind to kick in. That never happened. And this mile was not an easy one. I dreamed of hugging the mile 12 marker when I got to it. When I reached it, instead if a hug; I felt like crying. My legs were feeling heavy, I was tired, I had set a goal I didn’t know how I was going to make and I still had a WHOLE MILE to go. I switched from 4:1 intervals to 1:1. I felt like the FINISH line was never going to appear. When I could see the finish line in sight, I decided I needed to keep running no matter what. I’m sure I appeared to the spectators to be going in slow motion. When I was close enough to see the clock, it said 2:45:16. To finish before it reached 2:46:00, I was going to have to push. When I crossed the mat, I had achieved my goal. I remember the first time I crossed the finish line in high school completing the two mile with blazing speed. My coach told me, “If you have that much energy at the end, you didn’t give it your all.” Today, I gave it my all. I left everything I had……on the track!

Official finish time-2:43:49.

Running Is Cheaper Than Therapy

One of the things I enjoy about running, is racing.  The thing I like most about racing is the crowd support.  I enjoy hearing little children yelling, ” Go Mommy Go!”  I like being identified by my race bib by a number or my name and hearing random people cheer my number or my name.  I really love the signs with motivational sayings, funny sayings and just words of encouragement.  But there’s one sign that I’ve seen at every race I’ve completed that to me is the equivalent of finger nails on a chalk board.  That’s the sign that says “Running is cheaper than therapy”.  I’ve gone to therapy.  It cost me $30 for a session.  Oh, how I wish that was all I had to pay to run.  The biggest annual cost for running for me has been the shoes.  I went through three pair last year.  Next was running clothes, followed by a new cell phone to download apps (yes, I’m cheap.  I had an older phone without that capability), socks, sports beans and a fuel belt.  Running has cost me a mini fortune.  Let me not forget the new clothes.  Running has caused me to lose a few pounds and most of my favorite pieces had gotten too big.
Lets add racing to the mix.  Most races cost at least $30.  If you race near your home, you can do so relatively inexpensively.  Destination races have the added expense of travel, lodging, food and expo shopping.  “Cheaper than therapy.”  I think not.
I’ve learned a few things from running.  To keep the cost down, I start by setting a race budget for the year.  If I’m at my max by July.  I’m running and not racing.  I look for discounts.  I travel with groups to split the cost.  And the best thing I’ve done so far was a miles jar.  I knew when I dropped the first coin in that I would use the money for race fees, primarily Disney Princess.  In six months, I’ve saved $159.  Next year Disney has added another feature to the race.  Total cost will be $270.  And that’s just to race.  I still have to get there, have somewhere to stay and eat.  The coins that go in the jar now will be spending money.
So, although running (and certainly not racing) isn’t cheaper than therapy, with a little planning; anything is possible.