Monday, May 28, 2012


After several months of trying to strengthen my core again on my own and not having much luck, I decided to get serious and start Crossfit. For those who do not know, I would describe Crossfit as a combination of boot camp, circuit training, and Olympic weight lifting. If that does not help just search it on YouTube. It is really hard to describe.

I had heard of Crossfit before, but had not had much interest because it would be so expensive on top of my current gym membership. One of my good friends started going to a Crossfit box. She convinced me to start coming. As soon as Spring came around and I could end my membership at the gym, I signed up.

I've already been really impressed with the Crossfit gym I joined. I really selected that one based on the fact it is the only gym I'm aware of East of Seattle that has a shower at their location. There isn't a box close enough to my house where I could work out and then come home to shower again before work. So I drive to Issaquah twice a week for my WODs (Work Out of the Day). The box I joined also makes new members take a two week beginner class before joining the regular ones to make sure we learn proper form and can keep up.

I have never been to a gym class before where I wasn't if not the best, one of the best in class. In Crossfit I am definitely one of the worst. Even in the introductory class I was towards the bottom. I have already discovered my nemesis are cleans, followed closely by burpies. It took me many reps to get the right form and I am still not even sure.

After just three weeks of doing classes my back already feels better. I am drinking the cool aid for sure. I am no where near up to the times and the weights the regulars are at, but I know I'll get there. I would rather take it slow and escape injury. I look forward to sharing my progress with everyone.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Race Report: Kirkland 5k

My journey to this race was a some what interesting one. I knew I wanted to do a half marathon this year, but I did not want to pay the really high fee to run in Seattle RNR. I decided to sign up for the Kirkland half marathon instead. It was much easier to get to and I could do the 5k instead, if finding time to train was too difficult. I signed up back in December thinking May sounded so far away and a training for a half could be feasible. Well February quickly came around and my regular running schedule was no where close where it needed to be to train for a half, much less one as difficult as Kirkland. The 5k it is.

As it was, the 5k was even difficult to do. For medical reasons I had to take almost 3 weeks off from running. I was nervous to do such a hilly run. When I woke up this morning I really wanted to stay in bed. I contemplated for a second about skipping it, but I had a friend meeting me at the finish. I also had to go for a run anyway, so I might as well run a race. Of course Hailey chose to sleep in until seven, making me miss out on an opportunity to sleep in.

Once I had my coffee my outlook changed, but I was still dreading running up Market Street, which is at least a half mile up hill. Before I knew it I was kissing my husband and kiddo good bye to walk down to the starting line.

Lining up in the race corral I got really excited. It was a beautiful day in Seattle and about 62 degrees at the start of the race. I got a little emotional thinking about how it was Mother's Day and what a cool tradition it would be to run the race every year, thinking one day Hailey might join me. I honestly had to keep my eyes from tearing up.

The race started on time and the first part of the course lead along one of my usual three mile routes, from the Juanita Bay Park to the bridge and up Market Street. I usually do not go all the way up Market though. It was a killer. Many people stopped to walk at that point (I would say this is not very fast race, anyone really serious runs the half. I lined up in the front of the 8 to 10 minute mile group and did not have a lot of people passing me). I slowed down to my distance running pace. I stopped to walk for about 20 yards, but other than that I ran the whole way up. The nice part of making it up, the rest of the run is down hill most of the way back

I really think this is one of the hilliest 5ks around. Maybe only a mile of it is flat and the course really zig zags through the neighborhoods (and a lot of really nice houses). I had a beautiful view of Lake Washington for part of it. It would be so nice to wake up to that every morning.

By the time I hit mile two I was getting pretty tired. We hit the straight away I run on all the time. I struggled to keep motivation to run quickly. Then a mom passed me with a double stroller and an infant who could not be any more than three months old. I felt like a slacker. After I made the turn for the last .4 miles to the finish I was able to kick it up a notch and at the end I sprinted to beat out a guy running just in front of me. I finished with a time of 31:59 and a pace of 10:18 a mile. I'll take it for such a hilly run and that beats out my Valentine's Day Dash bathroom stop time, which was my goal.

All and all,  for a challenging course I recommend this race, probably not for a first 5k, unless walking is an option. For the half finishers, flowers can be ordered to give the finishing moms as they cross the line. Medals are awarded to all the finishers of the half too. Now how sweet is that.