A Dying Breed

Posts tagged “running

Track season, 2012

I have a real short post today, but I want to express how excited I am. It is FINALLY March 5th! For me and many of my classmates, this marks the beginning of our 2012 track season! I am so excited, I came to school in my running tights and livestrong shorts. I am really determined and I have a feeling this is going to be the best season yet, at least personally. My senior year and second year as track captain, I am going to kick butt on the track this year!
Before I go, here’s one of my favorite exercise shirts that gives me some motivation.


Blog ya later!


Got Inspiration?

As a runner, I sometimes forget that not everyone has the same love for running as I do. A lot of people have to force themselves to run for their own health/fitness. There’s a saying that my XC team loves to use;

“Our sport is your sport’s punishment.”

This is in fact true. In almost every other sport, the most dreaded part of practice/training is running. No one WANTS to run(unless you are a runner, of course), they are forced to. I just have one question; WHY DOES NO ONE LIKE RUNNING?

Personally, I love to run, but you already knew that, didn’t you? I have an internal desire to run, a driving force that pushes my legs to keep moving. My inspiration comes from within me. Many people aren’t as fortunate as me, so I feel it is my duty to lend a helping hand.

For your reading entertainment, I would like to supply you with a list of inspirational…things that will get you “pumped” for a great run!

  • Hardcore music
  • Awesome running attire
  • Have something to run for

Only one topic for today, so I will start with the first bullet:

Hardcore music: Ok, it doesn’t have to be screamo music or anything like that, but it does have to be music that really gets your blood pumpinng. Usually music with a fast tempo will get the ball rolling. Be aware that your exercise music may be totally different from your every-day music. My sister, for example, only listens to rock music when she is working out. Outside of the weightroom, she is strictly pop music.

I know that everyone has different tastes in music, but I would like to give a suggestion to your music selection. My favorite band is, without a doubt, Skillet. They reach me on a deep emotional level and their music is the best I have ever heard. Skillet has helped me through more than a few hard times and I don’t know where I would be without them.

One of my favorite songs of theirs is Monster. I believe everyone feels like this at one point or another and it really gets me going. Enjoy! (Check out all the running in this video!)

Just Run It Off…


That is the topic for today. Only God knows how popular of a subject this must be, because I personally complain about it every single day. And why not talk about it? Everyone experiences stress on some scale. Stressing about end-of-the-term finals, people at your work or even just your outfit for the day. There’s no avoiding it, so the best we can do is (1) tuck our tails between our legs and surrender or (2) lift our heads high and face it. I chose the latter.

Okay, I’m going to go on a very personal level right now.  I recently broke up with someone who I love and have been in a relationship with for almost 10 months(recently as in this morning). We have been friends for years and he is probably the closest friend I have ever had and the best relationship I have had thus far in my life. There a lot of reasons why this all happened and honestly, I do not feel like divulging this information. Just know that this has cut me extremely deep and I’m having a hard time coping. Between crying and venting my feelings to friends, I feel hollow and empty inside. It’s only 10:30AM and the day has been a blur so far. I am kind of hoping that blogging about it will help me feel better, although I am having little success right now. So in hopes that I can use this….unfortunate turn of events as a learning experience, I would like to discuss how I usually cope with my stress; Running.

I know a lot of people who run when they are trying to deal with stress. In my opinion I believe it is very effective and has done wonders to calm my nerves. I will admit to having a few midnight runs in the past, which is very dangerous, but was probably one of the hardest runs I have ever had. Afterwards, I always feel better, even if only a little bit. The endorphins released into my system put me in a better mood and help me through my struggles. I would highly recommend this as a remedy to any kind of stress.

Nevertheless, I am not very knowledgable when it comes to stress so I would recommend checking out my friend’s blog about stress: http://jessica-dealingwithstress.blogspot.com/ I hope this blog helps you with any stress, she is a very smart girl.

I won’t be able to run today since Wednesdays are pool days for my XC team, but I’m hoping I’ll be able to blow off some steam tomorrow since we may possibly have a CC meet.

Have a good day everyone…

Natural Enemies: XC versus, Well, Everyone

So first, I would like to give a little bit of a lingo lesson to my readers. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Cross Country, it is sometimes abbreviated as XC or CC. I have gotten a lot of questions about this in the past and decided to clear up the matter. For emphasis, I’ll throw these abbreviations in a few times during this post, so be aware!

Now, onto bigger business. As you may know, Cross Country is not a very popular sport. It might even be an UNpopular sport to a majority of people(Even my own parents will accidentally call it track from time to time). The fact of the matter is, almost no one likes Cross Country. Some people even HATE CC. As a XC runner, this is a hard concept to follow. How can you hate Cross Country? I know everyone says, “I hate running, so I hate Cross Country.” But Cross Country is so much more than just running. To be a Cross Country runner, you need mental toughness for starters. You have to have the will power to push your body to the limit and achieve goals that others can only dream of.

Here’s another little-known fact; Cross Country runners tend to get picked on. We get a lot of negative feed back just for being part of a sport we love. A large majority of people cannot understand how some one would WANT to run 2-3 miles all the time. It’s unusual for a high school student to enjoy running. They are considered weird and different. So what do we do to people who are different from us? We make fun of them.

Now don’t get me wrong, Cross Country runners aren’t the most forgiving people either. We have our fair share of jokes and jeers at other people’s expense. And naturally, sports taking place during the same months are the ones that pick on each other the most. This has made enemies of XC members and football players(and cheerleaders if you count that as a sport, which I do not). Girl’s tennis takes place during the fall as well, but they keep to themselves for the most part.

There usually aren’t full-out fights between these sports, but we don’t always get along. It’s difficult to be the sport that everyone hates and makes fun of. I have known quite a few people who quit CC because it isn’t “cool” enough to the rest of the school.

It can be difficult being different, but in the end I think it is always worth it. Who wants to be like everybody else? I definitely don’t!

Well that’s all I have for today. I have a Cross Country meet tonight, so wish me luck!

Blog ya later!

Running Withdrawal

People! We have a serious situation! I am currently suffering from Running withdrawal!!!!! This is not a drill! I REPEAT, this is not a drill! I know this may not seem like a big deal to some of you, but this is in NO WAY a laughing matter.

I’m sorry, I don’t like to lie, but I had to do it. I must confess, I was laughing a little bit while I wrote it. Hope you got a kick out of it. If not…..well, that’s you’re own problem, isn’t it? This is my blog and I can be as idiotic and corny as I want to be. Don’t like it? Consult my complaint department.

Like that little joke? Personally, I think this is a great pic. Best of all, it’s mine! (My aunt and uncle have an interesting decorating style)

Okay, okay, I’m done now. I’m all seriousness now, no funny business.

As you know, this last weekend I was a little under the weather. Monday, I was feeling a lot better and ready to keep running. Unfortunately, I was unable to do so. My family went to the Brewer game that night and I missed practice(good game by the way. We lost by a point, but the Brewers put up a great fight). By the time we got back to our hotel, it was almost 1 in the morning. Needless to say, I didn’t have time to run. Today, I had a college visit in Madtown(review: L-O-V-E that campus!!!!!!!!) and visited a few relatives that live in the area. I wasn’t back in town until after 3:30 pm, missing practice AGAIN!

I’m starting to get a little worried. I have a CC meet coming up on Thursday and I cannot afford to be off my game. So here is a mini lesson about running:

Stay consistent with your running! This is crucial for not only for your training, but for staying in-shape.

Humans are creatures of habit. Why do you brush your teeth every morning. Well, I hope it’s because of your personal hygiene, but also because it has become a habit(I hope). Running should be the same kind of habit. You don’t have to run every single day, but you should run at least 4 days out of the week. Just like any other habit, if you don’t do it consistently, you will lose the habit. Running is a hard habit to keep and an even harder habit to start/restart.

So that’s all for now. It’s about 12:30am while I am writing this and I am going to bed.

Blog ya later!

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

I originally had planned to do a post about the love/hate relationship that I share with running, but I decided to post about a more time-relevant topic. Since it is fall, there are A LOT of people getting sick, including myself. Unfortunately, this can make you incapable of even the most simple of tasks at times. On top of all that, it is REALLY not fun being sick. I don’t know how I got sick, but I did and now I am paying for it. I have a constant runny nose, my throat hurts in the mornings and I’ve sneezed more since Monday than I ever have in my entire life.

Yesterday, I attempted Cross Country practice in the chilly air, runny nose and all. Although I had running tights and a long sleeve shirt on, I was still shivering, despite being active. Needless to say, this was not a good day for me or my running. It’s hard to stay active while you’re sick. It was even hard to focus in my classes thanks to all the coughing, sneezing and sniffling. Luckily for the majority of my team, our Cross Country team is not having practice today.  Good thing, too, because I’m a little groggy from the night-time cold medicine I took this morning(don’t ask why I took night-time medicine).

Anyways, I decided to turn this unfortunate turn of events into a learning experience. Taking care of yourself is also very important when you are in sports. Time spent sick is time taken from training. The faster you recover, the faster you can get back on track and keep advancing.

I’m no expert, but my advice is to dress warm! I don’t care if you have a really cute tee that you have been dying to wear, throw on the sweaters! Find your fuzziest pj’s and wear them to bed for the entire time you are sick.

Also, don’t be outside longer than needed when it’s cold out. I made the mistake of going out in the drizzling rain at about 9 at night with only a t-shirt and jeans… definitely not my best decision.

I’m going to try my hardest to recover quickly so by Monday I’ll be good as new and back on the course! Wish me luck everyone!

To Be Prepared is Half the Battle

How often do you stretch? And I mean a good long stretch where you can feel your inner muscles. Or did a good warm-up BEFORE starting a workout? I’m guessing the answer is not often, and this is bad.

What you do before a workout/race/game is probably even more important than the event itself! As my title hints, TO BE PREPARED IS HALF THE BATTLE! This is in no way an understatement. Your training, warm-ups and stretching are essential to performing to your best ability.

The worst thing for any athlete is to have an injury. Not only are you in pain, but you can’t even participate in the sport you love! A fellow team-mate of mine has recently recovered from an achilles injury. For the last month or so she has been talking nonstop about running and honestly, it was driving us all crazy. Everyday, she told us how much she missed running and how she couldn’t wait until her first race. Thankfully, last Tuesday our coach gave her the OK to run in the meet and she was estatic. Her injury has been a major set-back in her running and she is paying for it in a big way. A large majority of athlete injuries are a result of not training properly.

This is easily fixable!

A great strategy is to cross train. Change up your routine a little bit through out the week. Go swimming or biking, something different from the actual sport you are training for. This will help your muscles develop since repetition can platue your results. Mixin’ it up will keep your muscles constantly vigilant.

Stretching is a INSANELY important. Stretching not only prepares your muscles for the work ahead, but helps them recover afterwards. Stretching important parts of the body like your shins can help prevent painful injuries like shin-splints(trust me, you do NOT want that).

Lastly, your warm-ups. The thing to remember about these is that it is meant to warm your muscles up! Get it? Doing warm up activities that get your heart rate up will get your body in work-out mode. When you can feel the heat rolling off your body, then you’re ready. DO NOT OVERWORK YOUR WARM-UPS! This prepares you for your work; it’s not meant to replace it.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more about running! *Hint: It’s a love/hate relationship*

Blog ya later!

It’s the Hardest Thing You’ll Ever Do

There is a reason a lot of people don’t like to run, especially when it comes to distance running; It’s hard! No amount of skill can help you when it comes to running. The only way to get better is to sweat and suffer through lots and lots of training.

I’m probably losing you, aren’t I?

As hard as this is to believe, a lot of people think running is, well, fun. I know, crazy right? I happen to be one of those insane people and I am proud of it! Honest! I ENJOY running! Hear me out though, beacause I have a few good reasons:

Reason #1: The Individuality

How many people do you know that willingly admit that they love running? Or do it willingly? Not a whole lot I’m guessing. Any one can play baseball or volleyball, especially if they have natural skill. In my opinion, real athletes are the ones who run. There aren’t a whole lot of us, but gosh darn it, we are proud! And although we are a team(for those of us on Cross Country or Track) you  are in full control of your performance. We are individuals, but work for a team purpose.

Reason #2: The Reward

I can honestly say that the best feeling in the world is the one you get after a hard, long run. I recently ran a 5k Cross Country race with my High School team. (Boys always run the 5k, which is 3.1 miles, while girls usually run the 4k, or 2.5 miles) The race was excruciating while I was running it and I wanted nothing more but to be done as fast as possible. Two things happened that made me extremely happy. The first, I was done with the race! There is no greater relief than finishing a race. I actually laughed with a fellow competitor saying, “That wasn’t so bad. Wanna go again?” The second was that I broke my personal record for running a 5k. My previous record of 25:00 has now become a 23:02. I was very proud of myself. I wish everyone could experience this feeling!

Reason #3: All Around Workout

Not too many people know that running doesn’t only target the muscles in your legs. Running gives you an almost full-body workout! While training, runners need to focus on their core, their arms and their legs in order to see any running results. I firmly believe that runners are in better shape than almost any other athlete. We are, in my opinion, the most fit people in the world.

I try to recruit a lot of people to run, but most just laugh at me. The lucky few will realize the good in running and join us in our run. I hope you will too. Blog ya later!