Today was a busy day, as evidenced by the 20,000 steps on my Wii U Fit Meter! It was SO NICE outside today--a very comfortable 36 degrees. That meant that the snow started melting, which makes me very happy. We're supposed to get a bunch more snow tonight, but for today, I was happy to see it melting.
I thought about going to the Metropark for my long run (seven miles), but I really wanted to go visit Mark today, so I figured I'd better do the treadmill so that I had enough time to go to the nursing home. I set the treadmill at an easy speed, and watched an episode and a half of Flashpoint while I ran. My heart rate only got to Zone 3.3, so it stayed very easy today.
When I reached seven miles, I decided to keep going, because I wanted to finish the episode of Flashpoint. But I didn't want to run, so I set the treadmill at 4.0 mph and 12% incline. Holy heart rate! My heart rate went up to Zone 4, which is a "tempo run" zone for me--usually, I have to run about an 8:00-8:20 mile pace to reach Zone 4. But walking at that very steep incline was tough enough to get my heart rate up pretty quickly.
I only did a mile, but I felt like I worked harder during that mile of walking than I did during the entire seven-mile run! Despite being difficult, it was kind of fun. I may do it in place of a run once in a while, just for something different.
I don't know why I bother putting my splits on there, because it's a treadmill run, so obviously my splits will be the same (unless I change speeds). I stopped my Garmin when I did the incline walking, but I kind of wish I'd left it on to see my heart rate jump.
Today is the last day of January, and this is the first month since November 2012 that I haven't run at least 100 miles. Last week, I briefly thought about keeping the 100+ mile streak going, but I really didn't want to get obsessive over it. My main running goal for 2014 is to have fun, and if that means less miles, then I'll be running less miles! This month, my total ended up being 92.2 miles.
After my run, I quickly showered and dressed so I could go visit Mark. I'd had a dream about him last night, that by a crazy miracle, his cancer was gone. In my dream, he had his pizza party as a celebration of being cancer-free. I woke up feeling really good about it, and then I realized it was just a dream. It would be awesome if that actually came true, though!
I stopped at the post office to see if he had any cards (he had about 20! Thanks so much to everyone who has sent them!). Then I stopped at McDonald's to pick up some lunch for him. My dad said that the doctor told Mark he still needs to gain some more weight; but thanks to the milkshakes and candy I've been bringing him, he's gained 10 pounds since he was hospitalized. Today, I brought him a whole meal AND a shake, which he enjoyed more than the grilled fish that the nursing home was serving ;)
As soon as we sat down in the cafeteria, he started talking about the pizza party that he wants to throw for his friends at the group home. I just really hope that it's going to work out! Mark's been working hard in therapy with his walker (he has to be able to walk in order to go back to the group home). While we were talking about his pizza party, I saw my dad walk in. I didn't know that he was going to be visiting Mark today, otherwise I would have just gone with him. I waved him over, and he said that the nurses told him that "Mark is in the cafeteria with his daughter". Mark thought it was funny that they think I'm his daughter ;)
Anyway, Mark was doing really well today, and his spirit was high. He was really talkative, but he got tired after an hour and a half visit, so I took him back to his room for a nap. I hung up a few more of his postcards--his walls are pretty full of cards now! I need to find another way to display them.
On the way home, I stopped at Kroger to do some grocery shopping. I haven't been able to get out for groceries in a while, so I spent an hour in there, getting some stuff we needed. I saw my friend Andrea in there, and we chatted about how nice it was to finally get out of the house!
After school today, Noah asked me to make him a walking schedule. He wants to participate in a race I've been trying to get him to do for three years! It's a "kid marathon" that takes place the same day as the Martian Marathon (I've done the 10K twice, and the half-marathon last year). The way it works is that kids can sign up and then they have to log 25 miles between January 1st and the race day, April 12th. Then, on race day, they run the final 1.2 miles of the Martian Marathon. They get a t-shirt and the same medal as the marathoners, which I think is so cool!
Anyway, after doing my Virtual 5K on Saturday, Noah has been really excited about walking. I told him that he doesn't have to run the kids' marathon, that walking is perfectly fine (the whole point is to get kids to be active). So I wrote a little walking schedule for him to get him to 25 miles before race day. Eli wants the medal VERY badly, but I don't know if he's willing to put in the work ;) I told him he can't do the race if he doesn't log the 25 miles he's supposed to beforehand. This is my medal from last year:
You can see why it would appeal to an eight-year old boy ;)
I'm really excited that Noah's excited about the whole thing. He is still so proud of himself for doing the 5K last weekend, and I think it boosted his confidence that he really CAN do this if he puts his mind to it.