Marathon Training week 8

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First of all, I love running really long training runs, after 10km I’m ready to go forever, or at least quite long :).

Secondly, training for a marathon and moving to another country is interesting. I got all bummed this morning when I realized that I might not be able to run my 18mile/29km run, because of this. A lot has changed in little over a year… But I am so happy to be who I am at the moment and so happy to take all my future days and adventures and make myself proud even more than I already am!

So last week was good and first time emotionally hard, not because of running, this moving is bringing emotions that I didn’t expect to pop up. Day at a time, with a positive mind, or at least try that positive part hard! ๐Ÿ™‚

Week 8

Tuesday – 4miles/6,43km planned, 6,52km done. Super slooooow buddyrun. I love how my dog is super stoked to leave and then after one km he’s all bored and doesn’t want to move anymore, but, when turn back home he’s all fire again haha!20140721-131414-47654356.jpg

Wednesday – 7miles/11,26km planned, moving stuff to do.

Thursday – 4miles/6,43km planned, 8,18km done. For some reason didn’t feel at all interested in going for a run, but I made myself do it and of course it felt amazing! Happy and proud!20140721-131414-47654140.jpg

Friday – Some strength training with Nike NTC app.20140721-131839-47919777.jpg

Saturday – 15miles/24,14km planned, 25km done! Like I said, I love these long runs. They just make me feel so strong and capable of anything! Stoked!20140721-131413-47653931.jpg

Sunday – Little NTC again to stretch my legs and work my core.20140721-131411-47651883.jpg

All in all great week, more of these!

 

 

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Marathon Training week 6&7

Past weeks have been so full of life changes that my running and training has suffered a bit. I haven’t lacked in motivation but just felt really tired and exhausted. But last sundays first real long run kind of reminded me that running is actually really fun and why I even do it. I also got a proper whooping last night, when I finally got back to my NTC routine. I felt just really weak, and it was great reminder that I can’t just run, I have to do other things to make myself strong too!

Week 6

Tuesday – 3miles/4,82km planned, resting still for this one.

Wednesday – 6miles/9,65km planned, 6,41km done. Great run in the end, before leaving I was all worried about everything, so this was therapeutic one.

Thursday – 3miles/4,82km planned, 5km done. Latenight buddyrun.

Saturday – 9miles/14,48km planned, switched running to quality familytime.

Week 7

Tuesday – 4miles/6,43km planned, 6,50km done. Lazy rainbuddyrun.

Wednesday – 7miles/11,26km planned, this was the day when my life changed. I got the amazing news that I will move to Copenhagen, Denmark and start a new life there, with happier things in my future. Couldn’t run, too many things and pure shock :D.

Thursday – 4miles/6,43km, 6,83km done. Had been eating way too little, so this was not fun.

Friday – 12km done, well needed stress and anxiety out run.

Sunday – 14miles/22,53km planned, 22,50km done. This run was amazing, I was a bit nervous going for it, but when I started running it just felt so good!

I have to get myself more in the game, if I want to really feel strong while running my first marathon in Berlin end of September. I still have time, so let’s do this!

 

(Body)Positive

Let me tell you, that shit is hard! To think positive about your body, your temple, your buddy for life.

We don’t always get along, at all… There are days when you look in the mirror and it’s impossible to see anything good, then there are days when you only see good. The latter ones are what I wish to see more, when I look in the mirror, just look at myself and see good.

This post is not about me hating my body, because that would be a lie. I don’t hate my body, I really like mine. But it’s more like a pressure from outside that makes me feel like shit at times. This weird wordless pressure. You push it away and don’t think about it, but sometimes it goes in through your skin and you just feel shitty about some small thing, which might grow to bigger out of nowhere.

I’ve been little low on motivation, when it comes to running and keeping myself on top of my game. It somehow started start of this year and just kept going and going and not letting me be free from doubt. I’ve obviously had good moments and days, but there’s been this underlying of negative doubt. That has made me loose my grip on my food choices and my want to push on with my training with positive attitude. So it’s been a bit of a jo-jo these past months.

And now, I’m in the beginning of my marathon training and it’s been really hard to get going and really enjoy the process. I think I lost my hope when it comes to running and how much it really has done to me. I lost it because so many people didn’t understand that huge change in me and put that passion and importance down, so that it started to be hard to believe that it really had happened. Somehow it was hard to believe in myself when others didn’t see what they wanted to see.

I’ve also noticed that it’s hard for some people to be okay with you to change, to be in a better place, to be happier and more positive. Maybe it somehow makes them feel shittier about something in their own life, I don’t really know. But putting the person down one way or another is something that people love to do. Positivity is not okay in this world. It’s expected but it’s not okay. It’s way better to be little negative about everything and find first the bad and then maybe, just maybe the good.

I feel that it’s so easy these days to put your opinion out there that people totally forget about being respectful of other peoples feelings and that something might not be a joke to them. I am thinking that would all those people who have big opinions ever really say them to your face, in a real face to face situation? I don’t think so, and that bothers me. Why do you need to say something if you wouldn’t say it otherwise…

Back to the body… When you are going through this kind of huge change in yourself as I have the past year, you are really sensitive to comments and reactions from outside, because you are not yet 100% sure how you feel about all of that. Change is hard without all of that but with that it feels at times impossible.

When ever the change has physical activity in it, it makes it okay for people to call you whatever and have great opinions about your choices. All of sudden everyone becomes an expert in exactly what you are doing. That’s just how it goes, no if or buts.

So, I am really happy that I have people that have gone through the same change as me, it makes it a lot easier to push on, not think that you are doing something wrong.

My body, my temple, my buddy for life… I watched couple amazing Tedtalks from Christopher McDougall, about barefoot running. He’s one of my favorite writers and has written this amazing book called “Born To Run”. What he managed to do to me, was that he said in the end of the other video, “first easy and fun, then fast”. That hit me so hard. If you run and especially if you want to run races, people start asking you about your time goals and how fast this and that. That can make you go all “I need to get faster, because!”, but that will surely also take the enjoyment out of your happy place. That has happened to me. And after hearing him saying that, it kind of opened to me. I don’t need to do anything other than enjoy what I like to do, and while I do that I might get faster too, but that is not the goal. The goal is to fulfill the dreams that I have. Because I will get to the finish line, even if I am a bit slower than it would be “cool” to be.

The same morning that I watched the video, I read this amazing article about how we should embrace who we are with all we are, why we are shaming our bodies because someone who fixed a photo with a computer thinks that that’s how we should look. Boom, another great eyeopener!

After those two, I went for my run. I didn’t take my phone like I always do, so I can take a photo during my run. I didn’t want to watch what my pace was, I just wanted to run without any pressure and enjoy it. And after too many months I finally did again! That feeling, amazing!

I was just cheering to myself in my head, I was telling myself how awesome I am, how brave I am, how beautiful I am, just whatever came to my mind.

The thing is that we all have cellulite, we all have wiggly parts in our bodies, we all have something that we would love to change but would that make us any happier? And would it even matter if and when we have something of those?! It shouldn’t.

Random jump, but you get the point… I bought these super nice and cool running shorts. They are called split shorts or in Finland we call them Lasse Viren because he used to run with them on. Basically they are shorts that are a bit open from the side and loose. So when you run they are super free for your movement and flash a bit of bum too. I have been super conscious about ย my butt for, well, always. I’ve liked it but the change in your behind while go grow older and go through life changes can be terrifying. Especially if that entails being depressed a lot and eating to your pain. Since my early teenage years I haven’t used shorts at summertime at all. Only couple years ago when I was a bike messenger and felt that my legs looked nice and then this summer.

I was so conscious about my figure and that I had and have cellulite that I thought that others will see that as bad as I. But somehow through running I have gotten angry at that part of me. What does it really matter if I have cellulite, it keeps me warm at winter, I think.

So, the first time I went for a run with those shorts, I felt all empowered. Those tiny split shorts made me feel all powerful, strong, sexy and good! And like my good friend said, if you can go out in those, then others have to give you props :). The thing is that they make me feel better about myself, so I will definitely keep wearing them.

I may not be all that I am expected to be, or whatever, but I am ME. Once I truly get that, I believe that I will be happier everyday.

I think that I am quite great, beautiful, strong, capable, fabulous, sexy, ME.

So I’m going to a better direction with that in mind, slowly getting better, sometimes going backwards but knowing that I can get myself out of that and keep going.

I need to thank you Christopher McDougall, that article on ElephantJournal, this interview about one of my heros, Leigh Gerson, Beyonce for being always an inspiration to me and reminding me of certain things and those split shorts (I have two pairs already ๐Ÿ˜‰ ).

The main thing is that what we need to change is what we have inside, not what we have outside.

That is (Body)Positive!

Here’s links to those Tedtalks and that article, or two of them :).

http://www.elephantjournal.com/2014/06/bellies-butts-thighs-cellulite-whitney-olivia-wilson/

http://spikesandheels.com/inspiration-leigh-gerson

 

First Week of Marathon Training

First week of training behind, didn’t go as planned all the way but “listen to your body” was the thing to do.

Here’s how the original plan was and what I did:

Monday – restday; long bikeride and walking with the dog

Tuesday – 3miles (4,82km); 3,17miles (5,11km)

Wednesday – 5miles (8km); 5,03miles (8,09km)

Thursday – 3miles (4,82km); restday and traveling to Berlin at night for We Own The Night

Friday – restday; We Own The Night Berlin 10K, 00:53:02

Saturday – 8miles (12,87km); restday and traveling back home

Sunday – cross; restday

So, more rest than the plan said, but I really needed it. I learned the hard way that I can’t go on without proper sleep. Traveling late night to Berlin and only sleeping few hours, touristing and racing in the night was just too much to my body and when I got home I had no energy to do any training. I actually slept for good 12 hours and woke up to sunday with a tired mind and body, almost feeling little sick. So I took slow and nice walk with my dog and ate good, strawberries for breakfast :). Sometimes our bodies tell us what to do, and I had to listen mine.

And now… about the race! It was a solodolo thing, like my first race back in Helsinki last August. I felt pretty tired and somehow reluctant before the start, but then at the start line I felt the adrenaline kicking in, really kicking in! There was around 14,000 girls running the race and really narrow streets… That meant a lot of zig zagging and trying to get around to run without any fuss. I felt super strong and fast, something that I haven’t in a long time. I somehow couldn’t believe it. But I kept going and pushed on. There was only one moment when I thought that have I pushed too hard, but then I kept thinking and saying my motto in my head “You got this, You got this!”. One of the best parts of the race was when I realized that I was almost at 9km and there was Run Pack Berlin cheering, and boy did they!! I was all about gunfingers and happiness by that point and just flew past with a huge smile on my face! Thank you guys and girls!!

There were some things that made the experience little sour. Before the race day, there was no proper directions about where the whole thing is going to be, especially if you were from outside Berlin. Even at the race day I didn’t really have any idea where to go. I got some directions from a friend and knew the area, so I did find the place but even around the area, there was no signs or anything. At the race village there was a lot of girls from around the world or at least how I understood from what I heard. And everything and all the info was only in german. I did understood most of it and could help this girl I met there from Denmark, but as in general it was not well organized. That was a slight bummer, and having that many girls running on super narrow roads was a bit of a bummer too. But realizing how strong I can be and how much I can push myself if I believe in myself, are more than I could wish. Strong mind, strong body equals strong race! ๐Ÿ™‚

Now it’s new week and new runs ahead, lot of learning behind in only this short time… What will this all bring out of me, that’s what I’m interest in! ๐Ÿ˜‰

My Running Shoe Evolution (review)

Pre warning to all Sneaker Heads… All these shoes are in use, so they aren’t in perfect condition ;).

From Left to Right: Nike Free Flyknit 4.0, Nike Free Hyperfeel, Nike Zoom Terra Kiger, Nike Zoom Wildhorse x2, Nike Flyknit One & Nike Free 5.0

From Left to Right: Nike Free Flyknit 4.0, Nike Free Hyperfeel, Nike Zoom Terra Kiger, Nike Zoom Wildhorse x2, Nike Flyknit One & Nike Free 5.0

I have been running now for little over a year but all these shoes have been my companions through that time. I wanted to do a post of these friends of mine and how I found the ones that work with my feet best. So this is a kind of review too.

NIKE FREE 5.0

The super ย bright orange pinkish shoes! Before I started running these were more of a everyday shoes, but I have to say that I was really happy to have them when I started. They were my best friends for more than half a year of my running journey. I ran my first ever 10K in these!

I really like that they gave me a bit of support but basically let my feet and legs do the work. Back when these started to feel like they have given everything, I started looking for the next to wear. At the time I really didn’t like the feel of Frees, the upper felt somehow loose comparing to these. But I have to admit that I also thought that I need more support, that’s pretty much how you are instructed and I believed it, so I started lusting over the new Flyknit Ones.

NIKE FLYKNIT ONE

So, my parents sponsored these new sneakers for me. I was waiting them like the new moon. I ran my first long runs in them, those runs that you remember forever, also my first half marathon(part of my personal project, not a “official” race but more than important to me).

I always felt that they are little loose, and maybe too soft for me, but I think I just wanted them to be perfect so I used them and didn’t think more about it. Now, they are just way too soft and my feet just get all hurty and feel super tired after only walking in them. But I also feel that they were good transition and without them I wouldn’t learn what would be good for me.

NIKE ZOOM WILDHORSE x2

These are one of my all time favorite shoes! They are trail running shoes but I liked to run pretty much whatever with them. I even did my longest run yet in them (28,8km), which was mixture of everything. I loved them so much that I used them all the time, every where.

End of last year I spend a month and a half in Finland and got to test them on snow, ice, and terrain that we don’t have here in Hannover. I can happily recommend them, on pretty much any terrain. The upper is sturdy and keeps its form really well, even when wet. The sole is grippy on pretty much all surfaces except on ice, tried and fell on my ass awesomely! ๐Ÿ™‚I really like that they have pretty loose toebox but they still feel snuggly. They feel nicely supported from the arch area but not too controlling. In the beginning they can feel like you are standing more on your heel, because the heel drop is only 4mm, which means that your heel doesn’t have that much under it, so it’s closer to a natural position of your feet. Some say that their calves got some pain after the first runs, I didn’t really have any of that. I have these in two sizes, they run quite small, so my, now old, size was little small on long runs. After realizing, thanks to these, I started using half a size bigger in all my shoes. I really like these and would recommend them to anyone who likes to have a shoe to run more rugged terrain and go to more minimal direction.

NIKE ZOOM KIGER

These are the more minimal shoe from Nike for trail running. In the beginning I didn’t like these at all, just no. They took quite long for me to actually start really liking them. Now I really like to run in them and use them when walking too.

The upper is looser than on the Wildhorse and I think that bothered me in the beginning, also they don’t have this traditional heelcup which made me feel that my heel moves too much, but now I really like that the shoe doesn’t control the natural moves of my feet while running. They have pretty identical sole to Wildhorse, except that it’s not “so” supported, so the biggest difference is in the upper. They are more minimal than the Wildhorse so, if you want to have that then this might be your shoe.These two models are more what my feet work well in and at the same time, end of last year, I started studying more and more about how our feet and legs work. I also got injured from too much running too soon and when I was injured I wanted to educate myself, to be able to understand what’s going on in me when I’m running. And be able to train without getting injured again.

All that I learned opened my eyes a lot about how we are instructed to wear while running or in general on our feet. Because of my previous injuries, I have been able to get my whole body little lopsided so I needed and still need to get myself “straight” and felt that if my natural way of moving is controlled I’m doing more harm than good to the process of getting better. And since I started getting deeper in to my learning process, I realized that I should give my feet a rest and let them figure out their natural way to do things.

The main problems were really bad shin splints and plantar fasciitis on my right foot. Usually you treat them with rest and more support, I tried, that made it worse. I also learned that only resting is not the best option. It makes sense now, but I didn’t know that if I only rest, all the work my muscles have done, starts slowly going back to zero and then when I do start doing something again, they aren’t as strong and able to take what I’m asking from them. So the injury actually never really gets better and you just get frustrated and feel like what the heck am I suppose to do, I am doing all that I have been taught. So, what I needed and wanted was a new mindset, new ways of operating my body and less of that supportsupportsupport thing.

Our bodies have all the support we need, we just have to let them do the work they are made for. To my huge luck, I got the most amazing friend and I got the chance to try out these next two models, which ended up making my injuries disappear and get me back on my running feet :). Obviously, I didn’t get better only by the shoes, there was other work too ;). And run that Half Marathon in Berlin, that I had waited for so long! Now these two share the number one spot on my feet and in my heart.

NIKE FREE HYPERFEEL

Not your average everyday running shoe or that’s what I thought before. Before I tested this one, I heard so many different things, some said that they can’t run in these, some used them only to run recovery runs and some used them all the time. In the beginning I didn’t run in them, the Half was so close that I didn’t want to take any risks.

For me, the first thing I noticed only when walking, is that your feet and legs really start to work. There’s nothing that keeps them working like they should. That can make your calves feel tender, it did. So, my first tip is to start really slow with these, maybe just by walking and then gradually starting to run short distances. This, if your feet are used to supported shoes. It’s pretty much the number one rule when changing from supported to minimal shoes, slow and easy start.I think that’s the reason why some don’t like these at all, they start too fast and get injured because their legs aren’t used to using those muscles before. There’s not the support naturally and your body needs the supportive muscles to be able to keep the injuries away. One thing that really bother me these days is that after I realized how much all of our shoes these days restrict the natural way of moving, it makes you think what you wear.

In the beginning I also thought that these look ridiculous, but once I started wearing them and realized how great they are, I started liking how they look too :). The upper is a flyknit and it feels like a sock. I don’t use socks with these if I really don’t have to. And the great thing is that because they don’t have traditional sole, so I can just take the “sole” out after my run and wash it and that’s it.

Sole and the light support.

Insole and the light support.

I’ve heard and read a lot about how your gait changes after you start running in minimal shoes, not sure how much mine has changed yet, but I feel that my legs are stronger and I’m less on my heels. I tried running barefeet on grass and noticed that I don’t even put my heel down, so there has to be some truth to it.The actual of these shoes is like a waffle, it has these small nobs and they grip well on slippery terrain and also make it easy to run on any kind of roads. I really like to run in these, because I feel that my legs feel better and stronger. I love that I really feel the terrain under my feet. They give me just enough cover while letting me feet do the work.Only bad thing… and this is with almost all girl size sneakers, way too long laces, so I got shorter ones!! ๐Ÿ™‚

NIKE FREE FLYKNIT 4.0

And then to the others on the number one spot :). Just a month before my Half when I was able to run again, I got these at the same time as the Hyperfeels. I wanted to try if I could run the race in these and from the first run, I knew all is going to be good :). My feet had found a new friend.Like I said before, I have these and Hyperfeels on the number one spot, I run in both. They work in a similar way but it’s good to have variety, so your feet won’t get too “comfortable” and will still work.

The upper on these is also a Flyknit, it’s made from one piece so there’s nothing extra which I really like. It’s the same as in Hyperfeels. I have had some problems with my old shoes with seams really bothering and even making cuts. With these there’s no problem about that. These feel like a sock too, they let your feet really move and there’s enough space for your toes, no squishy feeling. The tongue is attached to the shoe in a way that it doesn’t travel anywhere and doesn’t bother, as it sometimes can do.ย Like in Hyperfeels and Kigers, these have the Flywire which really helps the shoe feel like it’s made for your feet.

That yellow doesn’t come with the shoes… It’s some plant that we have here and doesn’t come off in the wash :).

The sole is little different from the old Frees, I feel that it gives more “room” for your feet to move even more natural. Nothing extra which makes them really light and you don’t even think that you have anything on your feet. That’s how I feel, and hope that others find them like that too.

For me, I like to run in these if I know that I will run mostly on asphalt and then with Hyperfeels if I know that there’s little all on my run. I have also used both of them while doing strength training and they work really well. Any kind of balance workout, you really feel the difference with these and old training shoes. With these you can’t cheat because there’s nothing holding you and supporting which I like.All in all I would recommend both of these minimal shoes to anyone who is looking to go to that direction or is already wearing minimal shoes. I have found that they are the ones that keeps me healthy and helps me getting myself stronger.

And, as you can see here, all of my shoes are Nike. I am a Nike head but I wear them because they work so well with my feet, if they would be terrible I wouldn’t wear them.

I’m not a pro in reviewing shoes, but these are my thoughts on how these shoes have been there for me and how they work with my feet. If there’s any questions, I am more than happy to help and answer anything I can.