This Runner's Trials
10May/12Off

The next racing goal

It's no secret that I'm a fan of goals. I love the idea of working towards something and seeing how hard I can push my body.

I enjoyed following my half marathon training plan earlier this year. After PRing in the half on back to back weekends, it was tempting to continue half marathon training. I want to shave 41 seconds off my PR and come in under 1:40 so badly. I was even offered a friend's registration for an upcoming half, but I know it's best to take a break from distance running right now. Doing long runs during the summer is dehydrating enough as it is, and now that I'm breastfeeding, it just doesn't sound like fun to me. And since I'm just coming off an injury, training for speed plus distance would be a bit foolish right now.

But I need to train for something. So, my newest goal is to do something I've never done before: race a 5k… all out.

The "all out" qualifier is key. I ran 5ks during pregnancy and as part of a triathlon, though in 40+ races I've never really raced a 5k. Why? Because running nearly as fast as I can for 3.1 miles scares me more than running 13.1 miles hard (I know, I'm weird). But I'm finally ready to take the plunge! I signed up for the Sheehan Classic 5k on June 16.

I don't have a time goal. Since my knee is healing, the goal is to train smartly and get to the the start line without injury. That means my training plan will focus on strengthening my body. I plan to lift, cross-train, do plyometrics, and keep my running mileage fairly low. I've never trained like this before, but I'm really excited for the challenge.

Here's the plan that SmartCoach and I put together. As always, I'll probably tweak workouts and switch around days throughout the course of training:

It turns out I'm not the only one who likes goals. My personal goal aligns quite nicely with Under Armour Women's new campaign, What's Beautiful.

According to the website, What's Beautiful is, "a movement to take back sport, starting with a competition to help redefine the female athlete."

This program is pretty awesome. Basically, you declare a fitness goal, track your progress on the What's Beautiful site, and post photos, videos, and cheer on others.

Then you can compete in Under Armour challenges over a 9 week period. At the end of the program, Under Armour will select 10 finalists, and three of them will become the faces of Under Armour for an entire year.

How cool is that?!

I love that they're choosing relatable, inspiring, hard-working women to speak for their brand over professional athletes or models.

It could be YOU! What's your current fitness goal and why is it important to you? Go sign up for the competition at whatsbeautiful.ua.com.

I've always been a huge fan of Under Armour. Case in point:

Once upon a time, I used to be able to run 20 miles.

Without their HeatGear, I'm not sure I'd be able to survive running in the humid Carolina summers or make it through a hot yoga class. Their new line of apparel is super cute, but more importantly, extremely functional for intense activity. Check it out here. I have my eyes on the Charge RC Storm Running Shoe. I've never tried a minimalist shoe, but the fact that this one is made with sweat-wicking HeatGear makes it really tempting to try!

Do you want to add some pieces of Under Armour to your wardrobe? Simply tell me what Under Armour product you'd like to try and you'll be entered to win a $500 Under Armour gift card!

SWEEPSTAKES/GIVEAWAY RULES

Rules:

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion, including exactly the following unique terms in your tweet message: “#whatsbeautiful” “#sweepstakes”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

c) Blog about this promotion and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post. To comply with FTC Guidelines (see http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/10/endortest.shtm), entrants’ blog posts must disclose that they are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post.

d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 5/10-5/21

Be sure to visit the Under Armour page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!