Dancing for Food

Overcoming the ballet body image.


2/3/2013: Surf City Half Marathon Race Recap

10/7/2012: Long Beach Half Marathon Race Recap

5/6/2012: OC Half Marathon Race Recap

Running is something I’m pretty new at.  I ran a bit in high school, but nothing serious.  Just 1.5 mile runs a few days a week.  I had a brief interest in running track in junior high and again in high school, but nothing ever came from it.  Ballet was what I did, and I couldn’t imagine adding something as different as running to my daily routine (unless it was the tried 1.5 miler, but that coincided with a temporary annoyance at ballet and a wish to feel “normal” during adolescence).

In February 2011, I cut back on ballet.  I started doing Insanity workouts (links don’t work – Google it!) to keep in shape in a different way, and continued taking my morning walks.  Then, the day after my last work day in June, I went on a 1.5 mile run with Mat.  It was 11 am on the first day of summer.  Read: bad idea.  I felt sick and like I couldn’t finish.  When we got back to his house I collapsed on a chair.  I drank a lot of water.  Then I promptly changed into my bathing suit to lay out by his family’s pool.

The next morning, I tried a 1.5 miler on my own, this time at 7 am.  It went much better.  Yes, I was definitely sore from the day before, but nothing I couldn’t handle.  As a dancer, you get used to random soreness.  I felt much more invigorated and motivated after that.

From there, I gradually increased my distances.  Within a month I was running a 4 mile long run on Saturdays, and I thought that was SO. COOL.  As most people my age do, I posted updates on my running on Facebook.  A friend from church who I haven’t seen in forever said I should run the Long Beach Half Marathon on October 9th.  She said that she never thought she could do it but she did, and she sent me the training plan she used from Hal Higdon.

I thought about it for at least a month.  Then, on the last day to register before prices went up, I registered.  I had now committed the money, so clearly I was doing it!

Come October 9th, I had run a long run of 10 miles the week before.  I was crossing my fingers that adrenaline would get me through the last 3.  And you know what?  It did!  I finished my first half marathon in about 2 hour and 15 minutes!

The night before that race, I decided to be crazy and sign up for another half marathon on February 5, 2o12 (Surf City – it was actually the one year anniversary of Mat’s proposal!) and a full marathon in May 2012 (OC).  I ran Surf City with Mat and my dad and shaved 5 minutes off my total time.

The full marathon plans didn’t go so well.  The last weekend in February I went for a 16 mile run – the amount I needed to do if I was going to train up to 16 in time for the May 6th race.  While I did finish the run, I was in pain.  My legs felt more fatigued than ever, and I knew then that I wasn’t going to be able to add 10 miles in the next 2 months while working full time, planning our wedding, and being in a friend’s wedding.  So, I switched to the half marathon.

Running the three beach city races qualifies you for the Beach Cities medal.  I finished the challenge at the OC Half on May 6, 2012, and am now 2/3 of the way finished with my second Beach Cities Challenge.  I’ll finish it on May 5, 2013.

I’m also finally running my first full marathon: the LA Marathon on March 17th.  I’m running it with my dad and I’m nervous and excited at the same time.  But that’s to be expected, right?


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