Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Five: XIV

All right. I have managed to survive this week. It was definitely up there in the hardest weeks EVER, but it is Friday, and I am here. Thank goodness.

So how about a little Friday Five?
1. It has been a really long week. In the office and at home, but I am happy to have been able to get through all of the things that I did this week. It certainly was not an easy week by any stretch of the imagination, and let's be honest, no one likes to be in a situation where they feel stressed out a lot. But I know that I will end up stronger for it. PLEASE?!?

2. Addie and Rapunzel have been hanging out this week. They are obviously best friends.

3. I am trying to plan something special for J's birthday this year. Sometimes I get overwhelmed and drop the ball, and I do not want that to happen this year. More to come.

4. I have had 4 runs already this week, and I am feel tired. I am pretty grateful (who AM I?) that today I am going to spend my lunch time on the elliptical rather than on the treadmill or pounding the pavement. Every once in a while you need a reprieve. Today, I need one.

5. It is the 5th of February already, and I have no idea how it got to be this date. Seriously. How the hell did this happen? I started something new on Feb 1, I will post a picture of it soon, but it is a journaling exercise that will hopefully help me to achieve one of my goals (do more for ME). I am working hard to be a better person...

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Monday run - new location

I have been trying pretty hard to get posts written in advance in general. I have been doing pretty well with that, but every once in a while, you want to be able to write a more timely update. Something that is happening more in the minute.

So today I want to talk about my run from Monday, because although I ran from the office, and ran in Blue Ash, which is where I have worked for 5.5 years, and where I lived for 4 ish years, I have never run in this place. I have not ever run over to this particular park or even driven in this park and gone for a run or walk. In fact, I think I have only been to this park one time ever, for a cookout with my employer (I THINK).

So anyway, the park is called Sharon Woods. I did not really have anything in particular as far as workouts goes on the schedule, just 8 miles with 4x30s strides. Convo pace.

So Charlie had mentioned to me earlier that he had done this exact run earlier that morning, and knew that I was in the middle of a struggle fest in all senses of the word. I just was having all of the issues happening, which was not a great way to start out the week. I don't want to go into them, but suffice to say, I needed a distracting run.

So that is not what the lake looks right now, it is after all, January, but it was still beautiful. It is three miles around and it is just over 2 miles to get there, so I was going to end around 7.7 miles to run to the lake, around it, and back. PERFECT.

So the other part that he mentioned to me that I managed to forget about until I got there? HILLS. He did tell me, I did have advance warning. But dammit. I was not expecting QUITE so many!
There you go, the hill profile from strava. Nailed it?

So here are my splits.
Mile 1: 8:14
Mile 2: 8:07
Mile 3: 8:22
Mile 4: 8:31
Mile 5: 8:33
Mile 6: 8:26
Mile 7: 8:11
Mile 8: 7:41

Strides after that, for an average pace of 8:12. Yeah... I flew on the strides. It was a good run and I was really glad to be reminded of where to run.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

I am focused on SAVING

As I mentioned one day last week (I cannot remember what day, I think it was Wednesday?) I am coming up with a list of things that I am working to save my money for. One of my unmentioned goals of the year is to be better about spending. Be more deliberate when I spend money, and really work for what I want. I mean, it is not as though I am hurting for money, but it cannot hurt to work harder and try more to spend appropriately, right?

There are reasons for this, of course, to model good things to Addie is the most important. To help to show her that we work hard and save our money in order to get the things we want. I am tempted to start the "allowance" process with her already, even at two. Does anyone have experience with that, by the way? Thoughts or suggestions?

So here is my "saving" list for the year.

1. This is the highest thing on the list as of now. It is a biggie, but an important one. Build my personal savings account up to $3000. Now, that does not seem like a ton, but I really want to get there. And I am more than willing to really really take my time and do this. However long it takes while still allowing myself to purchase these OTHER items around it.

2. Aero tights. I have been lusting after these since they were released in the fall. My runlove partner as well as one of my Ragnar teammates both seem to LOVE them.
I want this color too.

3. Stride shorts mini - printed. I have not seen the printed ones released on the Oiselle website yet, but I have seen a picture on facebook from a few different of the elite teammates. But here are the non-print shorts.
4. My NASM personal training study materials. I mentioned in my goals post that I had made progress, and I have decided that this is where I am going to start with all of my certifications. But the materials and exam are not super cheap, so I am saving.

5. More Oiselle. The holepunch lux sweatshirt specifically. I saw this on Lauren Fleshman on twitter and immediately thought... I MUST HAVE THAT.
This might be the first thing I purchase because I know ALL of my teammates want this, and I do NOT want to miss out. The fit of this one is a little different, so I am struggling to decide what size I need to purchase. I have been following any and all posts on this on our team facebook page, because I think a lot of ladies are feeling similarly.

6. A tablet for Addison. I just think this is a good idea for car rides and dinners out. With input from Karen (who purchased one for her three year old son for Christmas) I am leaning toward the Kindle fire. This may be a bday gift for her.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

January Goal Review

Somehow it is already the second of February. I am not sure how we have already gotten through the first month of 2016, but it has happened. As a result, I want to take a quick peek at my 2016 goals and see how things are coming along.

1. Run the year.
I am at 184.24 miles through January. To be clear on this, 2015 was a pretty good mileage year for me, and my highest mileage month was 177 in September (marathon training). I need to average 168 miles per month to hit this. Fingers crossed that the momentum continues.

2. Travel to someplace new.
Not yet, obviously, unless you count a new local brewery that we visited?

3. Read 52 books
I read 4 books in January, and started the 5th. I picked a long one for number 5 (the third book in the Game of Thrones series) so I am aware of the fact that I am slowing down the momentum on this for the moment. But you can't simply fly through 100 page books all the time.

4. Write 200 blog posts. 
I wrote 22 posts in January, which puts me at 179 to go? I need to average 17 posts per month to meet my goal, so I would say this one is checked off.

5. Take Addison to Bronners
Nope, but have discussed with my sister.

6. Work on the development of the team at work
So far, I am working on stepping out of my comfort zone and spending more time with folks when they have questions and really going through things on them and trying to make sure that I am being available. I think that is the biggest goal.

7. Do one thing for myself EVERY DAY
So far: check.

8. Cook 12 new recipes.
I made that macaroni and cheese earlier this month. Twas delicious and I was able to have lunch for days!

9. Show my coworkers and team more of "Runner Emily"
Obviously, no real way definitions around that, but I am working on it. And I am doing ok and keeping my head up and smiling. It is a start?

10. Figure out certifications
Progress. I have made progress. More to come.

Do you have goals for 2016? How is it going?

Monday, February 1, 2016

Training Recap: Week of January 25

Another week of long mileage is in the books. I mean, no, this is not like the mileage that I hope to hit in my fall marathon cycle (fingers crossed that there is a fall marathon cycle for me!), but for being like 12 weeks out from a half marathon, I am kicking ass and taking names.
First up, I got to do lots more OUTSIDE running this week, which I am THRILLED about. The weather was better enough to run outside throughout the week even though a few days were cold. But Saturday was on the TM as usual, making it work. I have to make sure to do outdoor running frequently, even though it is winter. It is important.

So let's look at the week.

Monday: 7 miles with strides. 7.59 total.
Tuesday: 1 hour run, convo pace. 7.33 miles
Wednesday: 50 minutes elliptical, strength
Thursday: track workout. 4x1 mile right into a 50 m all out, with 1 minute recovery. 9.21 total miles
Friday: 6 miles, easy pace with Charlie
Saturday: 7 miles.
Sunday: 7 miles.

44.45 miles run.
1 strength session.
1 xt session.

So, I think this is basically an "I nailed it" week? At least, that is how I feel right now. I am not sure how I have pulled off a switch so solidly in my head from "I am not sure my head is in to running" to "must run all the miles!" but it has happened.

Here's to another week!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Random - taking care of myself

Sometimes I feel as though I just missed something... I don't know why that feeling can occasionally niggle in the back of my mind, but occasionally, I just think that things are passing by without me noticing, and then when I do, I feel like "huh... how did that happen?" and then I reach back and try to figure that part out. The part that tells me when it happened.

Sometimes I feel this with silly things, I am reading blogs and reading a more recent post, and realize I missed a pregnancy announcement or something. Yes, this is a simplistic example, but it kind of gives a better example of what I am trying to talk about.

And let me be clear, this is my real life, not just me reading blogs.

This morning I am feeling a little bit behind, which is not a great feeling. Running this weekend has not gone the way that I had hoped. I got 7 miles on the treadmill yesterday before Addison woke up. J works Saturdays at this time of year, so I brought her down into the basement with hopes of finishing the run while she watched something on netflix, but right now, she is way too into the treadmill. She likes to do her "exercises". And while that makes me happy, it does make it difficult to get my own run done.

So it is approx 6:30 on Sunday morning and I am up for my coffee and am likely going to go out for a run shortly. It is kind of unfortunate, as today would normally be my day off, but I want to get through the mileage at least that I had planned. In order to do that, I need to run 7. I do not really have a plan yet, I think I am just going to run and see how it goes. I may stop at 7, I may not... Playing it by ear, which I am generally not great at, but I need to allow myself some grace as my friend Jes says... Granted, she was talking about grace in other aspects of my life, but I think it is just as important in running.

I am definitely way too hard on myself in most cases, cases that deal with running and cases that deal with anything and everything else. I think that I need to work on allowing myself some space, some happiness, and really focus on trying to breathe all the time. I am not great about these things and I definitely need to be better about them. I have been good about "doing something for myself everyday" as I asked myself to during my goals post (yesterday: run 7 miles, drink a sour beer - love them, color some owls), but I am still much too hard on myself. Maybe if I remind myself daily of what I did myself the prior day - like I just did there - can really help me to realize that I am taking care of myself.

And so, it is time to really focus, and really give that grace that is needed, so thanks Jes for the reminder...

Friday, January 29, 2016

Friday Five XIII

1. I have been spending a lot of time with Queen Elsa lately. But make sure that you call her "Princess Elsa" because that is what pleases her most.

2. But when she is not Princess Elsa, she enjoys making a lot of trouble. In case you were wondering, doing stuff like this will stall you from naptime, which is kind of goal number one these days. Stalling. And it works mostly because mom is trying so hard not to laugh that you can get a few extra minutes...
Please note the "Elsa braid"... She will sit still long enough to have her hair done if you make it "Frozen" related.

3. I am glad that the weather is slowly starting to get better, less cold, and less snowy. I need some running outdoors as the weather improves. While running in general is super helpful for my mental state, I DO enjoy running outside, so I would like to be able to do that...

4. I have created a list of things that I want to spend money on this year (I will share this later - next week sometime) and those are going to be the only things that I am going to purchase for myself. I am really trying to rein in my spending, and I think that having a list of "goal" items to purchase when I have enough saved might help me.

5. I am looking forward to writing a post next week sometime about how my annual goals are shaping up with one month in to the year. I am feeling pretty good and happy so far. Results to come, keep your eyes on that.