Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Great Pregnancy SLOW DOWN

Admittedly, now that I am into the second trimester (almost typed semester, wow!), I know that the number on the scale is going to being to go up. It hasn't so far, and I have been watching it like a hawk. I have been weighing just once per week. In the mornings, after using the bathroom and before working out. I have been within the same 0.2 lbs since I found out I was pregnant. And yes, my doctor believe this is perfectly healthy and normal for someone so active, so do not worry your pretty little faces about it!

I am ok with it. I know that it just means that I am growing a healthy baby and I think I am as ready as I can be for this to happen.

The part that I am not sure that I am ready for is slowing down. It happened a little bit almost right away, keeping my "fast pace" at just under 9min/miles (when I was hammering out 8:15s with ease on shorter runs previously) and when I do "speedwork" I keep my 800s at around an 8:30 pace. I am still trying to incorporate some speedwork into my running, just to keep up my fitness and stamina, even though it is slower than it was previously, but I also know that as I continue to grow, and the baby continues to grow, my body is likely going to force me to slow down even more.

Karen says that by 28 weeks she was barely able to keep a 12 minute mile. That scares me to death. I haven't run that pace since I first started running! (I used to set the treadmill at 5.0 and just leave it there until I was able to run 4 miles at that pace. Then I started picking up some speed!) So I am trying to come to terms with the fact that it is coming. I am also trying to remember that the speed will return (and remember how fast Karen has gotten from pushing the stroller!) and just keep my head up.

So this morning on the treadmill I decided to work really hard on a run. I was not SUPER pushing speed or anything, but I was definitely playing with it. Here is the workout I did:
I am pleased with the workout overall, and it felt good to get in 5.5 more miles for the last day of the CHILLY CHALLENGE! :)

I have signed up for PavementRunner's #MilesofShame Challenge to follow up the Chilly Challenge. I picked the 49ers for this game (even though J prefers the Ravens) because I have decided I am a HUGE Colin Kaepernick fan. That guy is awesome. Quick, great arm, thinks on his feet... wow. :) So let's go Niners!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dinner FAIL

Yesterday I made a crock pot dinner. I had spent the entire day excited about it. I got the recipe off of the Whole Foods website here, and bought the majority of the ingredients from there as well. It was Slow Cooker Chickpea and Lentil stew, and I spent the time since finding the recipe excited about it and how it would taste and how comforting a nice thick bowl of stew would taste. I even took the suggestion have having naan on the side for dunking (plus a little extra calories since it was a vegetarian stew and we were skipping the yogurt!)
It just was NOT good. Maybe it was the garam masala, which is a spice I have never used before. Maybe I just don't like lentils (which is DEFINTIELY not true, because my favorite restaurant in Cincinnati makes a lentil soup that I adore!) Maybe it just really needed that yogurt topping. Whatever it was, neither J nor I were fans. And now we have at least 4 more bowls of it that pretty much need to hit the trash.

Oh well...  you can't win them all, can you?

I did manage to get up at a reasonable time again this morning to get a run in. I decided to take advantage of a 60* morning in January and run outside in shorts and a t-shirt. It was WINDY! According to the weatherman the rain was coming in and soon, so I wanted to get it done as soon as I could so as to avoid the rain.
The wind was KILLING me this morning. It was rough. Mile 1 and mile 4 were along the same stretch of road where I was running INTO the wind. Mile 3 was completely done within a neighborhood with houses on both sides, which I think was blocking things at least a little bit. Regardless, this was a tough run, even at an easy pace, and I think my legs needed an easy pace after pushing them a little bit yesterday plus doing that Jillian DVD.

I at least THINK it was the wind + soreness that made me feel so slow today. I am really hoping it is not the pregnancy slowdown yet. I am not ready to slow things down yet. Karen says it will just happen, and I will have no control over it. I just am not ready for it to happen yet.

When I got home I hammered out a 2:30+ #plankaday, which was a pretty good one, felt great. I also started getting together snacks for J and I throughout the day. I packed us both some fruit, nuts, etc, hoping that it will keep him out of the M&M jar, something he has told me is a problem. I also made him a cleanse drink from the vitamix cookbook.
This contains 1 orange, 1/2 cup orange juice, 6 sliced radishes, 1 tsp of honey, and a 1/2 cup of ice. It looked and smelled like oranges, so I imagine it was good. :)

Did you have a productive morning?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

A Few Details, and Some Workouts

I got a lot of views on yesterday's post! J and I are both excited about this new journey that we are encountering right now, and although things are not easy, we are looking forward to the future. In just 7 weeks we will be able to find out the sex! (And yes, we are finding out, and yes, we will be making it public. J and I are both Type A accountants. There is no way that we could not know!) So that means I was 13 weeks yesterday, and I am due on August 5, 2013.

After I got home from work last night, I hammered through Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred to get a little strength training/cross training in, as my "plan" dictates. That workout is always tough, no matter how many times I have done it! I may try and get consistent on this, but we'll see how that goes.

This morning, I was up for a run! It was the perfect day to run outside (just under 50*, no rain) but I was just not prepared for the outdoors. So I stuck to my original plan and headed to the gym for the use of their treadmills. I wanted to try some speedwork, even though I know that my speed is not quite where it was before. I am still 100% cleared to run by my doctors, I have just been told not to overdo it, and I have been very very careful about that.

Here is the run - based on treadmill speeds:
So I did 3x 800m. Not as fast as I used to do them (at an 8:34 pace, rather than my 8:00 pace), but I am still happy about it. It was definitely a tough run, and my legs were pretty tired, but I am really proud of myself for getting through it. :)

In addition, this week, I was named as a Sweat Pink Ambassador! I am very excited about this opportunity and what it will present to me!

I will definitely keep everyone updated on this and what my plans, etc, are related to it!

Monday, January 28, 2013

A Long Awaited Post? - ANNOUNCEMENT

All right. I have come out on twitter, I have come out on facebook, and now it is time to come out on the blog.

J and I are expecting. I am 13 weeks along today. The picture above we took and had prints made right before Christmas to give to our parents as Christmas gifts.

Since then, various other family members and friends have found out, and J decided that last Friday was the day to make a Facebook post about it. I am not overly thrilled about announcing it in that manner - its just not my thing - but it was important to him, so ... whatever!

I don't plan on doing weekly updates or pictures (as I have sucked at taking them so far), but occasionally I hope to throw one in there. I will let you guys know how I have been feeling, if I am still running (I hope so!), weight gained, and eventually, the sex of the baby and potential names. I am not secretive about the names that we like, because I feel so secure and comfortable with them right now, that I do not feel like they can be insulted.

Are you surprised? Do I seem like a mommy person? Haha. I am not sure yet myself!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Ladies Night In

Last night was a much needed night out of the house with friends, but it did not involve a restaurant. Those are the best. We had food that was not awful for us, enjoyed our time together, got to talk and see two new babies (one 3 weeks, one 9 weeks), and really had a great time with my girlfriends, the ones I have had since I was 20.

We had decided that going to someone's house was way easier than going out, so we just went to Becky's house, originally having the plan to order pizza, which was changed to fajitas and fish tacos, which ultimately ended up being taco soup. It was delicious, regardless.

I made my vitamix guacamole.
(Recycled picture from the first time that I made it, but I did have it in the same container!) It was pretty much a hit, I have about three tbsp left, which i plan to use with my dinner tonight.

The taco soup that Becky made was a weight watchers recipe (if you google it, you will definitely find it - it seems to be rather popular) and it was really good.
I tossed a little cheese on this after I took the picture, but skipped the sour cream. It went really well, I think. we got through a lot of the soup. And Katie made like a taco salad, with romaine, roasted corn, tortilla strips and a spicy ranch dressing. It was super simple, but so good. I had second helpings of the salad. I think I will be making that on a regular basis for my own lunches and dinners because it was super delicious.

Overall, it was a great night with my friends, and I am really glad that I got to enjoy it with all of them. Katie is in charge of planning our February get together, and I just sent around a message offering to host March. I think I want to have it "in" again, like we had this night. I think we will do homemade pizza with my special super awesome crust! :) It was such a success for J and I that I really want to do it again soon, and this will give me the opportunity!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Food Planning - Reflections and Next Week

I have been having a nice time this week planning and thinking and packing all of the food I cooked this past weekend. It really is assuring me that being organized in that manner makes my life better all around. So I am hoping and planning on continuing what I did last weekend (although this weekend I will likely do my grocery trip on Sunday instead of Friday like I did last week since it is supposed to be snowy and yucky through lunch tomorrow!)

I actually spent a little time on my "Foodie Fun" pinterest board yesterday as well as clicking links off of other blogs for ideas of food I could make that would be good for breakfast and for lunch (since I am trying to bulk cook for those and have one meal out per week!) and then dinner ideas that will be filling and healthy for me and the hubs. Next week might be a tricky week because I have a haircut one evening - so crock pot might be the way to go - and J has requested that we make our triumphant comeback as a couple to our favorite bar (which I have been scared of since that was where we ate right before I got the flu).

Regardless, I am looking forward to cooking and planning again next week, just as I did this week. It has been enjoyable and has overall kept me on track with my intake, in a much better way than I even expected. Granted, I bought some candy on Monday, which definitely threw a wrench into my plans and intake a few times, but I was sick of that yesterday and threw the remainder of the bag in the trash. Especially since it was candy that I really didn't even like!

If it wasn't for that candy and the snack demons that attack me (even when I am not hungry!) when I get home from work, I would be just fine on the planned food. So my goal next week is to step it up a little more (and not buy candy at the store!) and try and better deal with the snacking and eating what I have planned every single day. It is enough to get me through, and I am certain of that because it is something that I am VERY careful about. So no worries about anything there, not that you would necessarily!

I took a rest day today. J has been watching TV late into the night over the last few nights and I have been struggling to get to sleep while he has it on (because its usually college basketball and J and referees NEVER get along - if you catch my drift) so I was feel EXTRA tired. I plan on scoring a few miles tomorrow, since my workout was double on Monday and I got in my Monday strength and my (usual) Friday hill walking. We'll see how many I end up with though! :) I feel guilty about NOT getting a run in today, but I am trying to remember that I had a goal of listening to my body better.

Do you feel guilty when you miss a workout?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Date Night with J

I went home early last night, armed with information from Jon (Karen's husband) about my car. I felt well prepared to get the gas pedal reconnected and be able to start driving it again. I got my gloves and hat on (it was still like 12* outside) grabbed a flashlight and got to work. The description that Jon gave me was dead on. He described your gas pedal as being like a teeter totter. One end has the pedal, then it is hinged to the car, and the other end is where the cable connects. Having that teeter totter description really made it make sense to me and I felt comfortable under there and got everything reconnected. I drove it to work today. :)

After I hammered through the car fixing, I went back inside, got out of my warm clothes and into some shorts for a quick date with the treadmill. I had made the decision that since I got home early and the car was easy to fix, I might as well get through a FEW miles.
You can't really see it all that great because the flash got in the way, but I ran 2.501 miles in just under 23 minutes. I kind of did a little speedwork LIKE workout. I ran a few uptempo (8:30 pace) 400s. Which is a lot faster than the majority of my runs, especially treadmill runs, lately. I enjoyed it, but it was tough. I may try again tomorrow during a more "normal" length (5-6 miles) run. We'll see!

After the little run, I decided to get ready. I had planned a special date night for J and I weeks ago, which was a reservation at Melting Pot, my favorite restaurant. We are normally sports bar people, so we usually go there like twice per year, and my birthday is usually at least one of those occasions. If you know me, you know that make up and dress clothes are night part of my normal routine. But I decided to make an exception yesterday, and got dressed pretty.
The orange is a blanket that I had around my shoulders, but I am kinda of impressed with myself that my skin looks good and my eyes look so clear! Nice work on yourself, em! Dinner was DELICIOUS as I had hoped, and I am glad that we got to go. Next time we do, will probably be for my 30th birthday! Omg, hard to believe I will be 30 this summer!

It was 12* when I got up this morning, so to the gym I went and hammered out 5.34 miles on the treadmill in 50 minutes. It felt pretty good today, and I was definitely pleased with the workout, even if it was slow-ish (9:21 average pace).

I am grateful for every day that I workout and feel strong and healthy. What are you grateful for?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Stressful Morning, and some WORKOUTS

My day has not started out on the best foot. I am really feeling irritated at the moment, and there is very little that I can do about it right at this moment with it being negative wind chills and single digit temps and still dark outside. I am trying to remain calm about the whole thing and not worry so much about it, but honestly, it was the WORST way to start a Tuesday when I am going back to work after a long weekend.

Basically, I got up at 4:35 when my alarm went off with the intention of hitting the gym for a run. My legs were feeling pretty tight from strength training yesterday (I did a darn good job on the legs yesterday - workout below) so I was hoping that running them out would help loosen everything up. I even was thinking that it might be a good plan to try and throw a little bit of speedwork in there with some 800s on the treadmill. With the temp being what it is, the treadmill is really my only option as of right now.

I got in my car and pulled out of the driveway. As I started moving forward, I was greeted by a lovely problem that I have had more than one time before on a cold day...  a sticking gas pedal. I am moving forward because of whatever pent up energy that cars have, and knowing I have had this problem, I do not worry about it too much. I know that eventually it is going to unstick. It just does, usually. So I gently pumped the gas (so when it unstuck I would not shoot forward SO much) and kept moving forward. Since it was so early, there was no other traffic on my street, but I did not want to go onto a main road before the gas pedal was working again.

And then it happened. The cable must have broken, released, or something...  but the pedal dropped to the floor and nothing. It did not surge forward like it would if you "floored it", it just hung there. So I turned into a parking lot. Sighed. Turned the car off. Ran back to my house, fighting my tears. I told J what happened, accepted the fact that a run is just not in the cards for me today, and sat down to the computer to research the problem. I think I have it figured out, but with J and I? We don't really "get" cars, so I think I will still be having it looked at by a professional. J did idle it all the way back to our house (just one block) for me though, so at least it is in our driveway!

On to happier (at least for me!) news. Let's talk about my long run on Saturday. Karen and I ran 10, again, and we are continuously seemingly doing it more quickly each week. Here is this past week's run.
Average pace of 8:53/mile. See how our splits kind of jump around a lot? It was TERRIBLY windy, and the slower miles were when we were running into wind, and the quicker ones were when it was a crosswind or even occasionally (VERY occasionally) at our backs.

Yesterday I actually had the day off, so I hit the gym early in the morning. I had plans yesterday to lift full body. Here is the workout that I did yesterday.
I did all of the exercises except for planks and lateral raises as supersets with the exercise next to it (leg press+calf raise, etc). It was a TOUGH workout, and I definitely failed the last few reps and had to drop weight on every exercise by the 4th set, so I am considering it a win!

Hopefully I can get in a few decent runs this week since today was a run fail.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Weekend Food Prep

I spent the weekend trying to get things together for this week. Last week, I spent some time on Thursday and Friday planning the meals for J and I this week, as well as looking for a few recipes that I could make for snacks, breakfasts and lunches this week to help keep things on track. So this weekend, I worked hard to accomplish a lot of things.

It started on Saturday with a request from my husband.
Chocolate chip cookies. I used a little cookie scoop to make them, which is why they are like little bubbles rather than flat and round. So I guess they look kind of funny, but he said that they tasted good. I also made chocolate pudding for him.

Later on Saturday night, we were watching a movie, and I got up to change loads of laundry and this happened:
I get up for just a minute and then the pups steal my chair. They looked so comfortable though I was not about to make them get up, so I was a good doggie momma and sat on the floor.

Sunday was the really big food prep day. I dedicated my entire day to getting things ready to go for the week.
Protein waffles - I made a bunch and J and I ate some for breakfast yesterday and then we froze the rest to toast for breakfasts for this week. I had some today, in fact!

Cinnamon Swirl protein bars - I made this one other time, and J and I both really enjoyed them. He took one to work today for his breakfast!

Sweet potato muffins - these ones are gluten free! They were not originally gluten free, but I was out of regular flour, so I swapped it out for oat flour, and my oats happen to be gluten free!

I also roast a little chicken (my first!) and shredded it up to use in our various dinners for the week, and cooked one dream dinner that I was pretty sure J would not be a fan of (white sauce) to eat for my lunches this week.

I am getting off here soon to head to the gym and get my workout in and then start running some errands. It is going to be a great day, and I have lots of things planned to get done today, and I am looking forward to it. Here we go!

Friday, January 18, 2013

A Ramblin' Rose

This morning I did my second round of my brand new Friday ritual (and third time this year!) - crosstraining but logging miles. As you will remember, my goal this year was to hammer out 1200 miles, running AND walking. So Fridays have quickly become walking days. I go to the gym, set the treadmill on the hill workout, and hammer out just over a 5K in the 45 minutes I am there. Glutes and hammies get a little workout, I add three more miles (much needed since this week was light due to sickness!) and I am in and out of the gym in 45 minutes.

Next we'll see if Monday strength training resumes next week! I have my fingers crossed for no illness, and therefore YES!

Yesterday was a HUGE success in the work department. I accomplished everything I had put on my list to get done, and then some. As a result, I am somewhat uncertain with what to do with myself today. So I am working on meal planning for next week, blog reading, getting the things done that I need to get done, etc.

By the way, I just (as in 10 minutes ago) learned that I am off of work on Monday for MLK Day. I have never gotten this day off before, not even while working here, and so I am super excited. Let's add something to the above Monday strength training. We are taking a 9:15 am spin class! Yes! (By "we" I just mean "me" in case you were wondering.) I have pretty much planned an entire day now, which I am pretty darn excited about.

Sorry for a rambling entry, but I wanted to get all of the mad-dashing thoughts down on "paper" while I was having them!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Back on the Run Train

I am beginning to feel a little bit more normal. Tuesday was rough still, Wednesday was better, and today I am mostly feeling like myself again, as well as able to eat like myself, which is always great. I have a lunch date with Karen at Panera at 12:30, which I am extra looking forward to since it has been a week since I have been there when my stomach was in working order (I went there on Tuesday but just had soup and bread since I was still a little queasy). So hurry up and get here!

Along with feeling pretty good yesterday, I managed to get out there and get in a run at lunch time. I wavered on it all morning until I actually forced myself out of my chair and into the locker room at the office to get into my tights and stuff. I might have fought myself at the time, but boy am I glad I got out there.
So my average pace for this run was 9:08. Pretty spot on with a lot of what I have been doing lately, but it felt HARD. I suppose that is my first run post-sickness hard?

But that didn't stop me from finally returning to 4:35 am for another 5 miles this morning. I ran them on the treadmill at the gym since all of my running tights are in the dirty laundry. The bonus of this run was the fact that I out 5 miles on some new shoes!
These are my asics cumulus 14s that have been waiting patiently to move into rotation since I bought them at the Columbus Marathon expo in October. My 13s have close to 100 miles left on them, but I had made the decision last night that if I got up and went to the gym, I could test the new kicks. It worked, apparently! :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Pre-Flu Achievements

Ok, let's go back to some good things prior to me being completely 100% knocked out by the flu on Saturday night. Let's go back to Saturday morning, when I met my group for a run. The full marathoners were scheduled for 12 miles, with the half marathoners running 6. Not sure exactly where I fit into that equation right now (not training for a full, endurance is much higher than 6 miles) so I chose to run 10. Here was what Karen and I ran together on Saturday:
We were pleased. We picked it up a little from the prior two 10 mile runs that we did (average of 4 seconds per mile faster), so I guess we are nothing if not consistent, and neither of us are training for a marathon right now, so we are enjoying the fact that our long run paces are quite a bit faster right now than they were when we first started running together in July. We have nothing to complain about there!

After I got home from my run, I showered and dressed because J and I had a busy day planned with lots of errands. We started by going to the car dealership to pick up J's car. He had dropped it off on Wednesday night for one tiny little fix, and they had not gotten in done until Saturday morning. Suffice to say, J was QUITE upset about that, and I do not blame him even a little! They did not even do everything (he also needed a new battery, but it had been decided that he would skip that because the cost of installation at the dealership was a little bit out of control.

So we took his car over to Sam's Club after that, so they could do the battery. That was just the cost of the battery with no mark up. So obviously that was a much better choice. While they were doing that, we did our every other month Sam's Club shopping. We stocked up on frozen chicken breasts, sandwich thins, granola bars, all of our usual suspects. His car was just getting finished up as we finished our shopping!

We ran a few more errands before we decided to stop at Whole Foods! We don't always grocery shop there. In fact, we don't often grocery shop there, but when we are out there, we sometimes decide it will be fun to stop there and pick up a few fun things! We happened to pick the RIGHT day to go! They were having their employee chili cook off! So each department created their own chili and had little cups for you to try them, and then you could vote for your favorite! It was so fun.

On our way out, we decided to browse the frozen foods and each got ourselves a pint. We are both determined to make our pints last 4 nights, since there is supposedly 4 servings in there. I got this little gem:
OMG. It is unreal. I ate my first serving of it for dessert last night. It is not high in protein like regular greek yogurt, but it had all of the awesome tanginess of it, and I just thought it was amazing. Go buy it now. :)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

January Book Club: You are an Ironman

It feels like it has been forever since I wrote a blogger book club post, but I guess it has been two months. In addition, sorry for the delay in this entry. I finished the book last Tuesday and had plans to write the post on Sunday to get it out here, but I wound up super sick on Sunday and Monday, so Tuesday is how the world works this week, I suppose.

The selection for our January blogger book club was "You are an Ironman" by Jacques Steinberg.
Now, admittedly, triathlons have not really become my thing, at least not yet, like running has been. But I am interested in endurance sports, as a general rule, so I was definitely interested in this book. So, thank you to Jamie for selecting it and getting me to choose something that wasn't just about running for once.

This book follows 6 athletes in their journeys toward their first Ironman, the Ironman Arizona. Any Ironman race has the same distances making up the 140.6 miles that it covers. A 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike, and 26.2 miles running are what you need to achieve to hear those coveted words "You are an Ironman" sometimes 16+ hours after you have started.

None of these athletes that are being tracked are elites, they are all first timers. A few of them embarked on this journey after being told by doctors that they absolutely HAD to lose weight due to high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, etc. Some were inspired watching friends, significant others, or training partners finish their own Ironman journeys. Regardless of their reasoning, they were all committed to the race, and determined to FINISH it. Finishing was the single goal.

Some of the athletes were plagued by injuries, unsure if they would make it to the start line (much less the finish line!) and one ended up deferring her race entry to the following year due to a devastating knee injury.

The book follows their personal blogs a bit, trying to keep up with them as they go through periods of self doubt, as well as trying to fit in all of the workouts that are required of them to ensure they make it to the finish line on race day. To me, that was the best part of the book. I struggle sometimes fitting in all of the mileage that I want before a marathon, and so seeing them work hard to fit in all of the running mileage plus two more sports is amazing to me!

Have you read this book? What did you think of it?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

A #runch and my Oiselle order!

Today has been a normal-ish day. I have been hammering though my "to-do" list, trying to get all of the work related things that are on it completed so I can move on to things that I consider to be more "fun." I have been making a good amount of progress so far, so I have to be pleased with myself. So I guess that makes it time to write my entry for the day?

I hammered out my run at lunch time. It seems difficult for me to get up in the morning on the day of my third run for the week (last week I ran at lunch on Friday - third run day) and I just end up with a runch (run+lunch) that day. But I got out there and I did it.

Pretty good pace too! It seems to be a more common thing for my afternoon runs. I think it is because I am more awake (and therefore able to move more quickly) then than at 4:35 when I get my morning runs in. Does that make sense?

I received my #secretsale order from Oiselle yesterday (violet rogas!) and this immediately happened to my new 2013 planner
I love love love this sticker. I also added the button that was in the box to my North Face (and YES, it is the North Face that every single college girl - at least while I was in college - wore with her Ugg boots. I didn't have a North Face or Ugg boots.) immediately and I smiled every time I caught sight of it today.

We have a date night later tonight with some friends!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

A Blog Inspired Dinner

Now, I am not a food blogger, nor do I try to be (let's face it, I am LOUSY at carrying my camera around all the time). But when something of note is cooked, I feel like I should talk about it.

So J and I love Marco's Pizza. It is a favorite from our hometown, Toledo, that has recently began to expand their operations in Ohio (among other places) and now their are two locations within spitting distance (well, maybe not quite that close) of our house. It was the pizza that we had at my high school on Thursdays for a special lunch. It was the kind of pizza that you always had at parties and stuff when you were a kid. And I am thrilled to have it in the area.

J prefers his pizza with chicken, bacon and pineapple. I am not a huge fan of pineapple on pizza (or, in truth, pineapple) so I usually just get pineapple on half. But over the weekend he suggested that we try and MAKE chicken bacon pineapple pizza after a successful try with Trader Joe's pizza dough and our pizza stone. I decided I was up for the task, and purchased canned pineapple on my grocery trip. There is not a whole lot of value in buying fresh at this time of the year, for sure!

I also made the decision that I would for the first time ever, make pizza crust from scratch. Not only was this my first pizza crust, but it was my first time using yeast! I used Kath's (well, maybe it is really Matt's) recipe for whole wheat pizza dough. I used the toppings that were requested by J. (Minus pineapple for me!)
I am obscenely proud of that pizza. It was nice and brown on top, the toppings tasted spot on, and the crust was thin and perfect. It was so delicious. This is definitely something that J and I will be making again!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

My Healthy Dinner and a 6-spot

As usual, J was pushing last night for a dinner out. I was feeling guilty about the things I had been feeding my body over the last several weeks (the holiday threw me off track and I ended up with a ton of days after that where I would eat an obscene amount of candy after dinner - so not necessary!) so I laid down the law on going out. We had planned dinner already, so that was what we were having. J proceeded to spend the rest of the night whining about how starving he was. It was just lovely, as usual. Ha!

But because there was a plan, we went with it. Leftover lasagna (and then I would freeze the rest for another time) and salad.
My salad was baby spinach, bleu cheese and a raspberry walnut vinaigrette. J had a caesar (no way was he going to eat bleu cheese!) As a dessert I had an apple with peanut butter, which I was very happy with. It hit the spot, and I steered clear of bad foods!

This morning, feeling refreshed after making good dinner choices (yep, I am going to give that credit yet again!), I hit the gym for a run. This week, I want to do a 6 mile day, a 5 mile day, and a 4 mile day (in addition to my Saturday run). I had no idea what exactly I would end up with this time, but I went with the treadmill because it was 19* (less than 10* with windchill) when I got up. It's supposed to get warmer today, but not yet!

I ended up completing my 6 mile run today like this:
Mile 1 - 6.3
Mile 2 - 6.4
Mile 3 - 6.5
Mile 4 - 6.6
Mile 5 - 6.5
Mile 6 - 6.4
For 6 miles at a 9:18 average pace. I was pleased with hammering through 6 on the treadmill! It has been a while since I have managed to get that done!

Have a lovely day everyone!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Sticking to a NEW Schedule

We have now entered another work week. I am still slammed with everything that is going on for the end of the year, and I imagine it will be this way until our audit is over in mid March. I am already looking forward to that time. It is not busy season in public accounting though, and I always need to remind myself of that. It can always be worse. I am finally starting to come back from my vacation though. Last week keeping focus was a huge struggle, and today it went pretty well. Although I did not accomplish everything that I wanted to, I got a lot done and was able to continuously focus on what I was doing. I am calling that a "work win."

After work, I did some upper body strength training at home. Here is the workout.
I used my 15 lb hand weights (so 30 lbs total) for them. It was tough, and I definitely was wiped out afterward. I took no rest in between exercises and just a small one in between sets and I finished it in 20 minutes. I did it at home and was able to sleep in this morning, which made everything even better!

I made my own copy of Sara OUaL's training plan last week, and I had started to get it personalized for myself. I am hoping that it helps me to keep things on track. I am an accountant after all, so spreadsheets are my life! Thanks to Sara for that, in case I needed one more thing to make me Type A about my training! But I am hoping it helps me to stay on track with some strength training and yoga as well. With my crazy tight hammies, yoga will do this body good!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

A Long-ish Run with my Group

It has been two weeks since I got out my notebook and made a list of things that I need to do. Today might just be the day where I need to get it out. With it being the beginning of January, we are starting to work on closing out the year, so things are definitely far more busy than they usually are. So it might just be the correct time to get out there and do the list. The other two days that I have been in the office this week were admittedly rather lost days, which I am feeling a little bit guilty about, but only kind of.

All of that was written yesterday. I ended up having a decent day at work and getting a lot done.

This morning, I got up around 6 to make myself a peanut butter sandwich and take care of my dogs, and I watched the news and drank some coffee. I enjoyed myself early in the morning, and then headed out to meet up with the run group. They are obviously into Flying Pig training now, and I am not planning on running the full, so I was not going to run the full 12 miles THIS time that they were doing. The half runners were only doing 6 though, so I didn't think that was enough. Karen and I ended up hammering out 10 miles. We ran that 10 miles in 1:31:21 or an average of a 9:08 pace.

I was very pleased with that run. It felt really good, not too fast, and not too slow. It definitely took the first mile to get warmed up as we ran it around 9:30, but once our legs got going, we were able to run a few miles at sub-9. Since, like I said, I am not training for a full marathon this spring (or potentially even this year!) so keeping things around that pace or a little quicker on a long run really makes me happy. Karen and I have definitely come a long way, pace wise, since summer, so I am REALLY happy for us.

We'll see what I end up doing for the Flying Pig. As of now, I am planning on waiting until the expo and making a decision of what I want to do. I am considering the 5K, 10K and the half, and we will have to see where things are after the Glass City Half, since it is the weekend before the Pig, and I am for sure running the half there.

What would you do? Back to back halfs? That would be the top choice!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2013 - And How I Plan to Do It

Now, rather than setting myself up with some "resolutions" that I may or may not achieve, I have decided to go with "goals" instead. I feel like it will push me harder to accomplish new things, and things that i may feel accomplished by knocking out.

Therefore, in no particular order, here is what I want to accomplish in 2013:
These goals are just a rough start of things for the new year. They will grow and change as I see fit, but overall, this is what I want to accomplish. It will be a year of stepping back from intense marathoning to enjoy running again and gear up for a HUGE 2014 racing season!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Back After Extended Leave

After a much needed week and a half (?!?!) off from blogging, the longest I believe I have ever gone, I think I am ready to be back writing again. I am not sure why I took so long off, or why I felt like I needed it so much, but I am really glad that I did. I enjoyed the holidays with my family (J and the pups, plus our parents and siblings) and friends - including our friends Christmas dinner, date nights with two of J's friends and their spouses (turned my friends), and the gang at Tap House (quickly becoming our Cheers).

It was a great rest and time off from work as well, even though it rarely  felt like I was off work, since I worked every single day. But at the same time, at least it was not all day and I was at home all of those days? Right? At least that is what I have been trying to tell myself all week long, since I was constantly jumping on my computer to respond to emails and take care of things.

I have started to work on my 2013 goals, but they will be posted at a later time. I am still trying to finalize them, as well as make sure that I have all of the proper tools in place to achieve them. I don't want them to be too easy or anything, but I still want to make sure that they are doable in the current year with everything that J and I have going on in our lives!

The rest of our vacation was just relaxing together.

Zeus got a new coat for Christmas which he LOVES:
It's fleece and I am pretty sure he wants to wear it full time!

I did some cuddling with my faves:

And I even ran a little, believe it or not.
Overall, my time away was great!