Monday, April 16, 2012

Run for Renewal...Back on (the) Track

This upcoming weekend is a road race I had never heard of until I saw it listed on the Live Uncommon race team circuit. It is called the Run for Renwal. It takes place in Davenport, Iowa this Saturday at 8:30 a.m. (kids run) and 9:00 a.m. (5k). What is Run for Renewal? It is a road race that benefits a group called Project Renewal. As I recently learned, Project Renewal is a positive place for low-income children and families to come to for help. They mainly focus on kids who don't have a good home environment to go to after school. At Project Renewal they can come get a healthy snack after school, get help on homework, receive skills in social behavior and responsibility. This is a great resource for the community to have. For most kids that attend Project Renewal it is the only place they can get stability in their lives. Jen and I are thrilled to take part in this event because proceeds from the run benefit Project Renewal which in turn benefits the community we live in. We also feel good knowing our support of this race goes to support the kids who need it since their support from home is lacking. My student-teacher this semester is a volunteer for Project Renewal and she has shared some incredible stories with me about what these kids don't have and how she has seen them be positively impacted by Project Renewal. This race has only had about 150 people each year but Live Uncommon has set a goal of helping them get 1,000 people to attend! Imagine the financial impact that would have on Project Renewal! I hope you'll consider attending. Here are some of the benefits. There is a 1/2 mile kids race that is FREE!! They have lots of awards and the race only costs $20.00! They have door prizes donated by sponsors. The best part is that by participating you will be making a positive impact on someone elses life and on the community you live in. Michelle Russell, founder of Live Uncommon really inspired me when she wrote about this race and why it was chosen as a Live Uncommon event. We take so much for granted and don't realize how little some people have. Read her inspiring words by clicking here. If you would like the sign up information for Run For Renewal click here. Bring a friend...bring your family...heck, bring a stranger. Together we can make a difference here. This past Thursday I walked outside on my lunch period and was greeted with some of the most perfect running conditions I could imagine. It was just short of 60 degrees and the flag out front of our school stood perfectly still. I instantly decided to change my typical Thursday workout plans. I would swap my usual Thursday swim for Friday's interval running workout. Despite having tired legs on Wednesday night's group ride I wanted to go to the track for intervals. I had not been on the track for a workout in over two months since I was training with Augustana's team during the indoor season. I have continued doing intervals since then but they have either been on the roads or the treadmill. When I do them on the roads I don't wear a GPS so I have no idea what kind of pace I've been running. When it was time to run hard I ran hard...when it was time to recover I did just that. I knew the track would give me an idea of my fitness. My workout was one Super Mom did last week. It was prescribed by her college coach Ron Standley. The workout looked tough on paper. It was 5 sets of (600 meters, 90 seconds rest, 1200 meters, 2:30 rest). This was almost 6 miles of intervals. I set a target time of 5:12 mile pace for everything. I ran the first set in 5:08 pace and it was easy...I knew this was going to be good but also had a long way to go. I continued on with each one staying either the same pace or getting faster. By the time I got through the 5th and final set I was down to 4:48 mile pace! Overall for 9,000 meters of track work my average pace was 5:02/mile. This workout was a huge shot of confidence about how much I have benefitted from getting leaner this year. It was enough of a boost of confidence that I signed up to race 5,000 meters on the track at Simpson college in a collegiate meet in 2 weeks. I have never seen the under side of 16:00 and I think it would take a terrible storm to keep me from breaking that mark.

This upcoming week is my first race of the year, a short sprint triathlon in Sullivan, IL. I'm looking forward to putting the race wheels and aero helmet on and finding out how fast this new Specialized Shiv really is. I've been VERY impressed with it in my outdoor bike rides and workouts. This race marks a 2 year milestone of my achilles tendon surgery. I did this race 2 days before the surgery and almost blew a huge lead because I was forced to hobble in on one leg near the end of the run. It was also the worst pain I've ever experienced while running. It confirmed to me that the scheduled surgery was needed. It will be nice to actually be able to run the course this year. I remember the run course well because of how intense the pain was that day...not something that is easily forgettable. The swim is 400 meters in a pool. From there we run outside and get our bikes for an 11.8 mile tour of Sullivan. We end with a nice 5k through a park. The start list has pro triathlete Jared Milam on it. Jared beat me at Ironman Wisconsin and Ironman Arizona where he went about 8:45! It will be a good early season test for me.

Lastly Jen and I would like to thank a few more people who donated to our Live Uncommon campaign. The donations go to support charities that are tied to the races on the circuit. Project Renewal is one of them. This week we would like to thank Maddie Reynolds, Jenn Jacobs and Chad Chamberlin, Teresa and Glen Perkins, Brian and Brittney Belha, Chip and Dawn Irwin, Beau and Rachel Perkins, Kenny and Jane Wheeler, Jessica Imm and Matt Davison. We are humbled and blessed by your support!! If you would like to make a donation to Jen and I as we continue supporting the charities tied to the race series you can do so by clicking here or you can mail us a check payable to Live Uncommon. If you would like to support someone else on the Live Uncommon circuit or have your donation divided equally among all participants click here. Thanks so much for reading. I hope to see many of you on Saturday at the Run for Renewal. DREAM BIG!!

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