Monday, October 31, 2016

Training Update: Week of October 24

Another week of base building/10K focus training under my belt. It is definitely combo work right now because the mileage is decent but the speedwork was definitely faster intervals!
So let me tell you how my last week shook out...

Monday: 7 miles, 4x30 strides (7.53 total). Pure Barre. Core/stretching.
Tuesday: 60 minute walk. Pure Barre. Core/stretching.
Wednesday: 6 miles, 8:58 pace (treadmill). Pure Barre. Core/stretching.
Thursday: Speedwork (post here). 6 total miles. Pure Barre. Core/stretching.
Friday: 6 miles, easy. Pure Barre. Core/stretching.
Saturday: 9 miles.
Sunday: OFF

Weekly stats:
34.53 miles
1x XT
5x Pure Barre
5x Core

Another good week and I am READY to race! Now that my 3/4 top came in, I hope Thanksgiving is as nice this year as it was last year!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday Five XXXVII

Another edition of the Friday Five coming at ya from Bruegger's Bagels! It has recently been my favorite place to sit, drink coffee and write.
1. If I could, I would sit here (at Bruegger's) all day, most days and work, drink coffee, and write. I seem to be super productive when I am here. I think it might be because I am sitting up as though I am at a desk, without actually being in my office. So there are SOME distractions, but not too many, and the coffee is pretty good...

2.  Speaking of Bruegger's coffee... they have this bottomless mug club? I wonder if it is worth it, assuming I continue to work in Blue Ash and therefore am driving by here daily...

3. My left hip flexor is feeling SO TIGHT. I have been doing my stretches and muscle work nightly now, along with all of the stretching in pure barre, but I am definitely feeling extra tight. I will spend some extra time working on that this weekend, I think. Let's address all of this stuff before training really starts.

4. I am nearly done with Christmas shopping for my family (J and Addie). I need to write down everything that I got and see how things add up, and then I can decide if there is anything else needed to fill in gaps. I definitely still have to do stockings. I finished most of it last Friday.

5. I should have brought J's Hydroflask with me today. Then I could have gone over to Madtree for a little this afternoon and filled it up for him! That would have totally been a special thing and I cannot believe I forgot it. Ugh. Fail.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Speedwork: back on the horse

Today was my first workout after the marathon. Yes, the marathon was on September 10, so a long ass time ago. But I definitely needed the time to fully recover. So I am glad that I waited before doing a hard workout.

So here is what was on the schedule for the day.
So, to clarify... 1:38 for a 400 equates to 6:32 mile. So I am basically working three miles at a 6:32 pace. Prior to the workout, I started thinking about what that would mean if I could string that together in a 5K. That would equate to about a 20:10 5K, which would be a big PR for me, so I am definitely liking that idea... But obviously that has nothing to do with today's post and my workout.

So I rolled out of bed at 2 minutes before 4 am to go to the bathroom. I got dressed (my fresh green mac rogas and a sports bra, no shirt) and headed downstairs. I was doing the workout on the treadmill because it is tough/tricky for me to get my legs rolling that fast right out of bed on no coffee. So I sat on the floor, got my shoes on and my podcast tuned up, and got things rolling.

I determined yesterday that the 400s needed to be at 9.2 on the treadmill (6:31 pace). Having 45s of rest was something I had to spend some time to think about. Coach said REST. That doesn't mean jog, that doesn't mean WALK, that means just stand there. And truly REST.

So I started the treadmill. 1 mile up, which means I just set the treadmill at 7.0. I was planning on running the warm up mile at that pace, and cool down, it depended on how I felt. So the first mile felt great and so I kicked the treadmill up to 9.2. I cruised through all 12 repeats. It was hard as hell, but the 45s standing on the rails of the treadmill definitely was almost exactly the right amount of time. I mean, sure, having MORE recovery would be great, but I was ready to kick it up again when it was time to start.

The best part about it being full rest was that I could just grab onto the arms of the treadmill and hop off and leave the belt going. That way I did not have to worry about the time it takes to slow down or speed up the belt. I felt GREAT. All 12 repeats felt great. I was able to knock out my two miles down at 7.0 (and potentially could have gone quicker) and felt awesome (although SUPER sweaty) getting off the treadmill at 10 after 5.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

When everything can go wrong....

It does.

So on Monday morning, I had just a casual 7 mile run with some strides on the schedule. Convo pace, was what the schedule from Coach Jen said. It was cold that day. In fact, really cold (I should have worn mittens, but that is beside the point), So I had set knickers out to wear for my run. As it was 4:15 am when I got out of bed, I do my best not to turn any lights on, although I do use the little bit of light from my phone just to make sure that I am pulling on my knickers rather than pj pants, or whatever.

Now, typically, I wear underwear with knickers. But obviously, they are designed for you to not need them. So I decided that for this particular day I didn't need them. So I pulled on my pink tights, got my shoes and headed out.

Less than a block down the road, I realized that I MUST have put the tights on backward. WTF. How did I do that? Immediately, as I was not wearing underwear, I started to get a little ladybit chafing. There was no way on earth that I was going to last for approximately 7 more miles with ladybit chafing. So, I made the executive decision to run into the golf course, find some bushes, and flip them around. I had to take my shoes off and everything. Disaster.

I am glad I did that.

So I got back to the trail. And by the time my watch beeped for the first mile, I sort of felt like I needed to poop. Yeah, it was just going to be that kind of run. Luckily that feeling came and went. And I just tried to ignore it. There was one particular moment when I very seriously considered running off the road into a section of trees, but I resisted. I was definitely focused on that throughout this run, rather than my watch. Not sure if that is a good think or a bad thing.

I finally finished the run and it was a huge relief to get to the bathroom. The strides were definitely the most difficult part. But donezo.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Pumpkin farm!

The last weekend of Fall before Halloween was this past weekend. To be fair, this weekend might count as that, but that is too close to Halloween to be able to effectively "fall-ish". So we decided to do some fall stuff with Addie this weekend!

So after I went for a run on Saturday morning, we headed over to Burger Farm, which has a Fall Festival and pumpkin patch. We went there last year too, but were planning to take more advantage of it this year, now that Addie is so much more aware of the holiday.
Daddy and Addie walking into the festival. A perfect shot.

Right as we walked in, Addie spied "horsies" - a little pony ride where they walk around in circles - and wanted to ride it. Because her daddy loves her so much, I got in line to get tickets so she could go on the ride. After the horse ride, we quickly went through Pumpkinland, which Addie was not super interested in. And that is fine, of course, the real reason for going there was to get a pumpkin!

So we got in line for the hayride that takes you up the hill to the pumpkin patch (included with the cost of admission).
Family hayride selfie.

At the top of the hill, we all got off the hayride, and Addie immediately picked an "Addie sized" pumpkin. A pie pumpkin. And I made J take this picture with Addie.
After spending a little time up there, we got back on the hayride, came down the hill, and paid for Addie's pumpkin. We then went to the market to get my pumpkin (truthfully, I didn't feel like getting it up on the hill and carrying it around). Jason went inside to pay for it and came out with that and a cookie for Addie. A Busken cookie (local bakery) that was a jack-o-latern. She ate it, and we were left with this...

Yeah, that is the black food coloring from the smile of the pumpkin.

Big win for the fall day!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Training Update: Week of October 17

Another week of training down. I would say this one was working toward a sub-goal. Obviously, Boston in April is the number 1 goal, but I am racing one time prior to really focusing on my marathon, and working on running fast one time.

The 107th Thanksgiving Day Race! This is a Thanksgiving tradition, and this year I am far enough removed from my marathon that I will actually be in a condition to race it, I hope. Last year I was only 2 weeks removed from Indy and managed to run a 10K PR. Admittedly, my PR was quite outdated, but still, I am hopeful that with some decent training I can really knock it out of the park.

So let's look at this past week.

Monday: 7 miles, 4x30s strides. 7.53 miles. Pure Barre. Core.
Tuesday: 60 minute walk. Pure Barre. Core.
Wednesday: 6 miles, easy.
Thursday: 6 miles with 4x45s surges. Pure Barre. Core.
Friday: 6 miles, easy. Pure Barre. Core.
Saturday: 10 miles.
Sunday: OFF

35.53 miles
4x Pure Barre
1x crosstraining

Overall, a good week. The surges were tough, but I was able to do the slowest one at 6:18 pace (and progressively faster). Hopefully I will get at least 4 more days of PB next week!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Friday Five XXXVI

Hooray! I am actually writing 5 entries this week!
1. Last week I had to run 9 miles on Sunday. After all of the fun on Saturday, and after 6 straight days of Pure Barre. I packed #shortshortsandlongsleeves which is my fall running uniform. As it turns out, it was too warm for long sleeves. It was a TOUGH run.

2. The Pure Barre Strong Challenge started on Monday. I am IN. 20 classes in 31 days. After today, I will have 4. I missed Wednesday due to a meeting at the office.

3. This weekend we are getting family pictures taken. Sunday morning. The photographer is the same one who has taken ALL of our family pics, Addie pics, and even our engagement photos. I will post them after I get them!

4. I have been feeling HUNGRY on runs lately. I am not sure what is going on with this, even if it is just an easy 5-6, I am feeling HUNGRY. I have never experienced this before. Anyone ever have this? Any advice?

5. I was off today and yesterday, for the second straight week. Thursday Friday off, 4 day weekend. BOOM. This is what happens when you have been working at the same place for a long time.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Addie's Adventures with Papa

As mentioned yesterday, when I was Christmas shopping with the adult ladies in my family, Addie was hanging out with Papa. While I have every confidence in my dad to take good care of her, and she loves him loads, I wasn't sure what they were going to do all day. To ease some of his pain, we packed a few dvds. Turns out, he has netflix, so they were taken care of.

I had nothing to worry about.

Papa took her to MacQueen's apple orchard! They were having their fall festival, and they went over there for the day. Addie had a BLAST! She even loved that spinning strawberry ride, which I think is crazy, because it would make me sick! Kudos to Papa for surviving that ride!
And don't worry. The girl got a tiny pumpkin.

I think she had a fun day with Papa! Thanks for watching her, dad!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Frankenmuth trip - 2016

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I was in Toledo this weekend for the annual Ladies Trip to Frankenmuth! I love going with my mom, sister, cousin (Megan) and Aunt Laurie! This year, my cousins wife, Stephanie, also joined us. I think it was the first time that she has joined us in several years.

After mom, Rachel and I were done with our workout, we said goodbye to Mo, and Rachel and I headed across Secor to pick up everything else we needed for the trip. By that, I mean coffee and Barry's Bagels, because of course. So I ran into Barry's and Rachel ran into Starbucks (right next door) while my mom drove home to make sure that she was there for Stephanie and Aunt Laurie (we would pick up Megan on the way). It always takes us longer to get on the road than we plan. Ugh. That sort of thing stresses me out. Honestly.

Regardless, eventually we were on the road and driving the 2 hours up 23 to Frankenmuth. The drive was uneventful, unlike last year, and thank goodness. We arrived at Bronner's just before 11 am.
We spent about 2 hours at Bronner's. I got some ornaments as gifts for my family (a "family" gift, plus one for J and one for Addie), Karen's gift- as usual, and Angela's present. The one special thing that I did was get Addie something that I told J was "naughty". I only said that because it was semi-expensive, it was something that we had only generally talked about, and I did it slightly selfishly.
That is a Mickey Mouse toy shop. It is part of Department 56's North Pole Village. There is an entire "Disney Village", but it fits right in with North Pole. I have always loved this village, but already having one of my own, I could not justify it. Now the reason that this is selfish is because I will get to have this in my house for the next 15 years or so.

After Bronner's we had lunch at Zehnder's, visited Rau's Country Store, a chocolate shop, etc before piling back in the car and heading home. On the way home, we stopped in Dundee, as usual. The "disneyland of gas stations" (also known as the Beef Jerky Outlet).

After arriving home for the day, picking up Addie from Papa's house and bringing her back to my mom's, and getting her off to bed, I felt it necessary to accomplish some other things...

Wrapping. So overall, it was a lovely day, and I felt like I got some shopping done!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Pure Barre - adding my family

As I mentioned, I realized that Barre 3 was no longer working for me and my lifestyle. I was getting some trouble at work from being gone at random times to try and fit in my workouts, and there were really no options to make the class work (no lunchtime classes, 4:30 classes only 2x per week at 4:30 pm). And I was sucked into a transition...

Admittedly, once again, as when I started barre classes the first time, Krista was an influence here. I was pretty much "off" still, no running, etc, after the marathon, and she text me and invited me back to Pure Barre in Toledo when I was visiting. Now, she invited me to come run with her as well, but I was still off running - she was surprised of that!

Obviously, I had been doing Pure Barre in Toledo whenever I visited. That is the only option there. But because of the way things were going at the office, I knew that I was possibly going to have to make a change. So because I already had that in my head, when I saw it come up at some of the PB studios locally were having a donation based class, I signed up. And I dragged my coworker Lauren along with me. She liked it so much, that we looked at classes a little closer to the office, and purchased 3 class packs at the Kenwood studio.

Yeah, since then, we have been all in.

This past weekend I was in Toledo. It was the annual family ladies trip up to Bronner's/Frankenmuth, MI to start Christmas shopping. Addie came up to Toledo with me, but she was going to spend the day with Papa (my dad) because years ago we decided no kids, even if the kid is a girl - my mom, sister, and I try and do another trip in the Spring/Summer where we take the kids. I wanted to go to PB Toledo when I was in town, and I knew the best way to make it work with our trip was to invite my family.

My mom agreed first, and I called up the studio and got everything squared away for my mom. I added her to their schedule and I also paid for the class on my account, just to avoid any troubles ensuring her getting registered. Within a few days, my sister was sending me text messages asking about it. Wondering if I thought that she could do it (considering her struggles because of her clubbed feet - she was born with them, but has notoriously weak ankles and calves, and her accident a few years back which left her with metal in her ankle and back), asking questions about movements, cost, etc. I was trying to be encouraging and realistic, letting her know that I definitely thought she could do it, but she would likely have to modify some movements. She was ok with that, and she registered too!

The class was set for 6:45 am on Saturday morning. I insisted that my mom and sister be there at 6:30 in order to fill out their waivers, meet the instructor (whose class I have taken at least one other time), and make sure that they were comfortable and ready to go. My sister picked me up at my dad's house, mostly to make sure that I was leaving my car there for my dad to use with Addie since there is a carseat in there.

They survived. They got through the whole class. My sister gave a disclosure to the instructor about her injuries. Obviously that was important. And I think they really enjoyed it, so I am thrilled to have shared something that I love!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Training Update: Week of October 10

So I am back in base building mode following the marathon that I ran a month ago. I think I recovered more slowly than I usually have after a race. I think that is for a few reasons.
1. I ran MUCH harder and put forth much more effort than I have ever before in a marathon (or any other race for that matter.)
2. The humidity was right at 100%, plus temperatures were more than 60* throughout the race.
3. I was nearing the end of my entire year of training, so I was just tired.

But after two weeks off, I am back on the wagon, and one month after the race, I was able to run in a way that I would consider "normal" again. So right now, I am just beginning to incorporate strides into my runs again, and I still have a few weeks before I actually log any tempo miles or interval miles. And that is ok. I need this time mentally, and I don't really have anything major coming up until next April (BOSTON BABY!)

So let's take a look at the last week of training.

Monday: 6 miles, convo pace, 4x30s strides, Pure Barre, Core.
Tuesday: 60 minute walk. Pure Barre. Core.
Wednesday: 6 miles, easy. Pure Barre. Core.
Thursday: 6 miles, 7:55 pace. Pure Barre. Core.
Friday: 5 miles, easy. Pure Barre. Core.
Saturday: Pure Barre.
Sunday: 9 miles, convo pace.

32 miles
5x Core
6x Pure Barre
1x XT

A great week for my first week back to posting training logs, right?

Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday Five XXXV

Maybe I am turning a corner? Getting my third post published this week? Does that mean I have found my blogging again?

We will see how that goes, but for now, here is a chance to write a Friday Five post for the first time in AGES!
1. I am headed to Toledo in a few hours. This weekend is the annual girls trip to Bronner's, and I am pretty excited to be off today and to be enjoying a cup of coffee and writing, with plans to hit the road around noon.

2. I made a change. I made a change in my barre routine. I have left Barre 3 and I am now at Pure Barre. The switch was made solely due to the convenience of class times. Pure Barre has a daily class at lunchtime, and obviously, as a full time working woman, lunch time is when works.

3. Oiselle has a puffy vest that I want for Christmas. You can read about it here. But it is $158, so I will really have to think about it... By the way, the one I want is the Quill and in blue...

4. Work has been pretty intense. I suppose that it always is, but I am definitely feeling exhausted of it all. I am not sure what that means yet, but I am working hard to try and figure that out. It is certainly hard for me to believe that we just issued our audit report in July, and now, in October, they will be coming out in just a few weeks for the interim work.

5. I saw an instagram post about SuperHero muffins 2.0. I would like to call these the "fall version" as they include pumpkin. I will be baking them when I get back from Toledo.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Race Recap: BQ.2 Chicagoland

Ok, I have heard it enough. I need to get a post written about the race... I have let it stew and settle and thought and rethought about my approach to this post. But in reality, it is difficult to sum up an experience that was everything that I really thought I was capable of doing and executing despite rain, despite humidity, despite running a looped course, which has its pains...

So way back, more than a month ago, on September 10 I ran a marathon. I ran the BQ.2 in Geneva, IL. I registered for it back in April, after it was forwarded to me by my husband. (For those whose spouses are not runners, when they offer their support to you for your major running goals, you take it - and I registered immediately.) I started training for this immediately after my big PR in April at the GCM in the half. I definitely just started with some base building, getting mileage under my belt, but it was not long before I was into training, hardcore, once again.

So I guess I should talk about the race, since everyone who reads this has actually potentially read my training recaps.

So, J and I drove to Geneva on Friday, the day before the race. We dropped Addie off at daycare, and immediately hopped on the highway headed toward Indianapolis (that is the easiest way to get to the Chicago area). We arrived in Geneva around 1 pm, which was right on time to stop by Geneva Running Co to pick up my packet. We got there, I got my stuff, I got my picture taken with my bib (they were very serious about ensuring that those who were going for Boston qualifying times were not cheated). After that we went right over to a little restaurant called "Little Owl" for lunch. It was super cute. The food was really good too.

When we finished there, we headed to our hotel, I got my stuff all ready for morning.
After that, I headed over to the forest preserve where the race was, J stayed at the hotel and worked. I ran a shakeout with some of the race officials and pacers. We ran one lap of the race course (race day would have 2 laps), which was just over a 5K in distance. I ran nice and easy (a little slower than 9min/mile pace) and did a few strides at the end. After the shakeout, I went back to the hotel, showered and dressed for dinner. Following our meal, I went to bed almost right away, full of nerves.

In the morning, I sat in the dark, reading blogs on my phone and eating breakfast.
Jason took me over to the starting line right before 6 am for a 6:30 start time. I definitely found the restroom immediately, and paced around a lot waiting for the race to start.

I introduced myself to the 3:30 pacer (who was planning to run a 3:26), and told him that I was sticking with him. He tried to point me toward the 3:35 (3:31) pacer, and I corrected him, letting him know that no, I was running with him. He gave the group the plan (first mile easy-ish -8 min pace - and then hit every mile between 7:45 and 7:55), and it was not long before we were hearing the national anthem and were out the shoot!

The first mile we ticked off at 8:15, and then the group took off! I checked my watch and they were running sub-7:30 pace (I was running 7:35 and losing them quickly) so I made a very quick choice to let them go. I was a little discouraged right off the bad that it was mile 2-3 and I was already losing the pace group, but there was NO WAY that I was going to run that fast and do well on a day that was so humid. The sky started spitting. I saw J at the end of the first lap. After seeing him, and knowing that I was in a good place for running, I honed in my pace and focused. I brought my fuel in a camelbak, it was my first time racing with one. I took my water bottles (with just water) at every elite station and drank my tailwind. On the other side of the loop, I took water at the aid station and dumped it on my head. Yes, it was raining, but with the humidity, I was already super hot, and did not want to risk any issues.

J walked the loop, the opposite direction that I was running, and therefore I saw him at a different point on the course every time. That was awesome, honestly. It was nice to see him in different places, and it kept my spirits up, especially around lap 6 where I was definitely wiped (right around 20 miles). My pace was slowing, but not a lot. I was still ticking off miles in the high 7:50s. I think I ran an 8:03 in there, but in general, I was able to keep them below 8.
On the 8th and final lap, I really wanted to be able to RACE, but I was done. I just was able to maintain my pace. The above picture was taken right as I was heading into the last half mile-ish. I really wanted to sprint, but I felt like I was. I just KEPT RUNNING.
And when you reach your goal, in not ideal conditions, you experience JOY.

By the numbers:
2 scoops tailwind
2 gus
Fastest mile: 7:36- mile 4
Slowest mile: 8:02- mile 24
Total time: 3:27:46
PR by 11:07

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Stitch Fix - my 5th fix

So... I know that I need to get an update written on my race (someone dropped a not so subtle hint at me about that via text message), but this post will not be that... I actually have something non-running/non-kid to chat about.

(rare, right?)

I recently became a Stitch Fix Influencer. This was an opportunity offered to me through the Sweat Pink network, and having used Stitch Fix previously, I was definitely game for this opportunity.  I LIVE in workout gear, even for the office, and with a few opportunities recently to present in front of executives, as well as my interview for a manager position, I definitely need to work on stepping up my game BEYOND tights and tunics.

For the first time, I linked to my pinterest fashion board, which admittedly, has not been updated in QUITE a long time. (I should probably spend some time on that before my next stitch fix at the end of November). And as a result, the ENTIRE fix was exactly my style. Two tops, a cardigan, a pair of jeans and leggings.

I wound up keeping the cardigan and a striped top. I loved the jeans and the fit of them, but could not justify $100 for jeans, that was the only complaint that I had about them. I loved the leggings, but they were plum colored, and I have a pair of plum leggings already. The other top was a black cowl neck sweater, and it just seemed way too big (even for a sweater that was supposed to be oversized). Jason agreed with that assessment.

Notice: I received styling for free, but all clothes were purchased with my own funds. This post contains links, and if you sign up for stitch fix using one of my links, I will receive a credit on a future order.