Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday Five XXXI

Sorry about no post yesterday. I started writing it only to get overwhelmed throughout the day. But I figured I could still get a Friday Five out today!
1. I purchased another order of Addie's school pictures this week. That girl is just too cute. Here is the one that came in the order that is my most favorite.
She's beautiful.

2. I pulled off two barre workouts again this week. That is 2 weeks in a row! I am pretty pleased with that. I am loving it, and it makes me a happy camper. Next week, Karen and I are going to a live class!

3. We have a three day weekend with Memorial Day. Thank goodness, I am thrilled. I need an extra day, even though I will just be running and all that like usual.

4. I cannot believe next week is already the first of June. That seems super hard to believe.

5. I had my first sports bra run of the year this week. Exposed my pasty white tummy to the sun (with sunscreen, of course) for the first time!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Tuesday morning, easy

Yesterday I felt tired when the day started. Yes, this might have a little something to do with getting up at 4:30 am to knock out a 40 minute barre 3 DVD, but still. Tired. After the barre workout, I got ready for work, but just kept all of my workout clothes on, as I wanted to knock out my 4 mile easy run this morning as well. I was scheduled for a meeting at the last minute that went from 10:30 am -12:30 pm, so if I was going to get it done, I wanted to do it in the morning.

After arriving at the office, I used the restroom, grabbed by headphones and headed out. I was planning on running our most common 4 mile loop, which was introduced to me by my former coworker Greg. I almost never run this route any more because I am typically running more than 4 miles. The nicest part about this route is that it goes through a park and has a little bit of mulch-trails.
It was a beautiful morning. The sun was out, I was wearing a tank top and was comfortable, temperature-wise. I ran the four miles and really enjoyed my times out on the trail, in the park, and on the road back to the office. I was out there for just over 36 minutes, which is pretty much exactly what I wanted to do.

Some days you just need to let go of your exhaustion. Of your anxiety. Of all of the other tasks that are taking up your time and effort. Get out there. Enjoy the sunshine. The wind. The rain. The cold. Whatever the weather is, spend some time out in nature and look at the path in front of you. For once, that is ALL that matters.

And when I returned to the office, my head was clear, and I was ready to work.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Pic from my iPhone 2

Well, after accumulating another 300+ photos on my iphone, I felt like it was time to clean them up again. And so I figure it is time to add them to a post, and then get everything loaded up to snapfish. Someday I will make a few more photo books for the Roo.
 My Tigers Girl, smiling pretty in the gym at her school.
 Momma and Roo - a selfie.
 Addie's new book. It is PERFECT. Vader + Princesses. (Also, this book is HILARIOUS)
 PJ day at school. Addie wanted to be "Chippey" (her elf on a shelf)
 This is truth.
 TV watchers.
 Me & Jes at the Little Kings Mile.
 The falls in Sioux Falls, SD.
 Making the letter "L"
 Mom and Roo dinner. Chicken. Berries. Quinoa chips.
 Being a doctor AND golfing, all in one? (I guess that makes sense. Doctors do like golf, don't they?)
 Pretty smile in the bath tub.
Ice cream! (and an awkward smile)

Hope you enjoyed seeing more of the Roo!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Training Recap: Week of May 16

Another week of training as I head toward my BIG HUGE RACE GOAL is already checked off and in the books!
(PS - I have not actually set an official goal yet - that is to come)

Monday: 7 miles with 4x 30s strides. Core 7.57 miles
Tuesday: 1 hour barre 3. 6 miles @ 9:03 pace. Core.
Wednesday: 7 miles with 4x1min surges. Core.
Thursday: 50 minutes elliptical. 30 minutes Barre. Core.
Friday: 6 miles, 9:05 pace. Core
Saturday: 10 miles with Caroline.
Sunday: OFF

36.57 miles
1x XT
2x Barre
5x Core

Solid week where I accomplished EVERYTHING that I wanted to!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Friday Five XXX

Welcome to my THIRTIETH (I had to spell check that word) Friday Five post!
1. J has been gone all week this week, so we have spend some time on Facetime every night with him. That is better than nothing I suppose, but Addie and I are driving each other crazy, I think. I am more than ready for him to come home. We are already having mother/daughter tension and making each other crazy and she is not even three yet! We have a long way to go...

2. Karen and I are running some easy Friday miles together AGAIN this week. We did this last week as well, so I am glad for two weeks in a row! I should probably come up with a different 6 mile loop to mix things up a little...

3. I have been spending some time working on my diet, as I mentioned in yesterday's post on new recipes. The issue that I am having is trying to figure out what the right balance is. On one hand, I am trying to eat all of my snacks as protein and fat. On the other hand I am trying to eat 40/30/30...  What is the right answer because I am having a struggle fest doing both!

4. I have been exhausted this week. Completely exhausted. It is like I just cannot get enough sleep! I am hoping this is just adjusting to food and stuff. But I guess I will see soon how all that is playing out.

5. I went to the gym with a coworker this week. The new hire who actually got the job that I interviewed for. We did not work out together, but I introduced her to the facility, drove us both, etc. I am really trying, and I hope that is noticed...

Thursday, May 19, 2016

A new recipe!

I have not gotten into the detail of this yet, post to come, but I am working on making a few slight modifications to my diet to hopefully have some major changes will come to my running! As a result, this past weekend I meal prepped!

This also resulted in a new recipe, something that I am using as a side dish.

I made Tawnee Prazak's Sweet Potato - Coconut Flour Biscuits.

I have been listening to her frequently on Endurance Planet as I have found this to be another great podcast to listen to while I am running. And she discusses frequently fat-adaptation for endurance athletes, and while I am not 100% a believer (yet), I am definitely interested in learning about this, and it obviously is encouraging whole foods, which is certainly not a problem at all!

I made a few modifications to her recipe, so here is what I did.

3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
4 large eggs
4 cups sweet potato, grated
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup coconut flour

Mix all ingredients together and roll into balls. Bake for 30 minutes on foil lined baking sheet.

This made 15 biscuits for me.

Mine appear to be a little bit more crumbly than Tawnee's picture, but that is ok. I did not add the cheese like she did (maybe next time?) But I am really enjoying them as a snack or side dish with my lunches this week.
Do you ever bake with coconut flour?

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

A Trip through Memories

So a week and a half ago, I was home in Toledo, just overnight, for a special event. I would guess that not all people see this as a special event, but to me, it was really special.

It has been 15 years since my classmates and I performed the leading roles in our high school's musical (Central Catholic in Toledo), Once Upon a Mattress. And at Christmas time the current CCHS Glee Club, along with the rest of us, found out that is the show that they were going to be doing this Spring. And shortly after that, Lexi, one of our friends - she played the Queen - facebook messaged the group of us to see if we wanted to get together and see this show. She handled getting tickets for the group (thanks Lexi!) and we all waited several months to see each other and see the show.

The day arrived and we met up at the theater. We saw the show, and as we sat in our seats, we were refreshed on the show that we spent so many hours rehearsing and perfecting. There were definitely moments that I had completely forgotten about, even my own scenes. It was definitely fun to watch it, especially with the people that I spent so much time with 15 years ago.
The 2001 cast and Mrs. Barrow.
Elizabeth. Jenny. Lexi. Me. Mrs. Barrow (Debbie). Chelsea. and Pat.
2001 cast.
2001 cast with the 2016 cast.
Me and Gretchen. The 2016 and 2001 Lady Larken. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Real versus NOT, GOALS

Do you ever struggle with what it is specifically that YOU want? Do you ever set goals and then later realize that you are setting them because of some expectation that you think someone ELSE has for you? This expectation could be real or imagined, but it still gets in your head, and it definitely makes it difficult to decipher your goals from your "imagined" goals.

I have decided to take a look at some of mine. Now, I am going to call them real and imagined, but to be clear, they are not necessarily imagined. They are just not a priority. HOWEVER, that does not mean I am not going to try for them.

RUNNING:
Real: Run a BQ time (better, hopefully) in September.
Imagined: Run three marathons in 90 days in the fall to qualify for the marathon maniacs.

Notes: This three marathon thing is something that came up recently. I have not deciphered it yet, but I know that this goal is not the true goal for right now. I mean, I might decide to do this, but I need to keep my eye on the prize.

CAREER:
Real: Obtain more responsibilities, achieve a super high level on my performance review while maintaining the ability to train for marathons how I want, spend time with my family how I need to, and balance my life.
Imagined: Become a CPA.

Notes: Becoming a CPA is important in the long run. But I got sucked into this when I was not necessarily ready to commit. I need to find my focus here.

Obviously, these are only two examples, but they are the two things that have been in my head most frequently right now. I definitely have been thinking about this a lot recently and trying to figure out what I need to do. Getting "pen to paper" in this case has helped me to figure out what I really need. What I really want. And how to get there.

Do you have a struggle sometimes between your real and imagined goals?

Monday, May 16, 2016

Training Recap: Week of May 9

So I have continued to log more miles, and we are working on ramping things up, as I am slowing working to toward BQ.2 in September. September 10 to be exact.
I am feeling incredibly motivated and inspired to go forward and work toward this big giant goal that I have set. So let's take a look at the week as it played out.

Monday: 6 miles, 4x 30 second strides, 6.55 miles. CORE
Tuesday: 1 hour barre workout. 6 miles, easy, CORE.
Wednesday: 7.52 miles (7 miles and 4x30s strides) CORE
Thursday: 50 minutes elliptical CORE
Friday: 6 miles, easy
Saturday: 10 miles
Sunday: off

36.07 miles
Core 4x
Barre 1x
XT 1x

A solid week. 2 more weeks of the basics, base building miles, and then I will be full on board with the training.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Friday Five XXIX

Friday five day!
1. I think that writing about the mom guilt that I am currently having was quite helpful in really helping me to breath and relax about it. Getting those feelings out "on paper" was an effective way to deal with it.

2. I am very seriously considering adding some kind of barre class to my schedule 1-2 days per week. It will be a replacement for strength training, since it is that. As of right now, it is just a DVD because I am not sure that even I can justify the cost of another gym service (I already belong to 2 gyms!) but I love it thus far.

3. I am running with the crew at lunch time today and I am very excited about it. Charlie and Karen are both coming to the office to run with me.

4. I have been thinking about marathons lately, and for some reason hitting the three marathons in 90 days and joining the maniacs is appealing to me. But in reality, I have no idea why. There is the obvious sense of accomplishment that will come with it, but it is unlikely that I would get really involved with the community. I have my community. Karen, Charlie and the birds here. Krista in Toledo... I don't need more. Or maybe I do?

5. J is going out of town for a conference. He is going to Las Vegas! He leaves on Sunday and gets back Thursday. Addie and I are going to bake a cake while he is gone (that is what she asked to do, so... whatever!)

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Reflections... on Roo

Mom guilt.

Yep. It is for real. And I definitely cannot get over it some days. I feel like it has maybe been happening more often recently because of the traveling that I have needed to do recently. I am sure that has to do with it.

But instead of trying to focus on that right now, I am just going to focus on her. Because I love her more than anything right now, and even though I am feeling bad about things, I need to focus on the good things. So her are a few pictures of her, more for me, but I need this...
 Facetiming when I was in SD.
 Talking on the phone to Daddy at school.
 Yogurt eating selfie.
Vacuum at daycare.

Sometimes you just need a little reminder out there that you love someone more than yourself. And everything that I do every day at work, running, at home... everything... is for this little thing.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Race Recap: Little Kings Mile

Shortly after running GCM, I raced a 1 mile race. I do not frequently get the chance to do this, since I am so frequently running more endurance based races. But as part of the Beer Series, I have raced 1 mile two times previously, and this was round three.
Source

This specifically was the Little Kings Mile, I ran this the first time when I was pregnant with the Roo (post about this here) and ran it in 8:00. But I am happy to have run it. And then I raced it the second time in 2014 (recap here) and ran in 7:05. But this year, despite being only a few days out from a big PR in Toledo, I wanted to prove that fitness on a one mile course. So on Friday night, April 29, I went downtown to run a one mile race.

I jogged about a mile, then did a whole bunch of stretching waiting for a friend and before jogging another mile-ish over to the starting line.

Because I had forgotten to enter my planned finish time (I think I would've put in 6:30) I was scheduled to be in the last wave of the race. But Jes was in wave A and she wanted to break 7:00, so I checked with some folks working the race, and they told me that they would not be strictly enforcing the waves, so it should be ok if I lined up with A. And so I did.

It was a little bit crazy, because as I was standing there, with Jes, getting ready for the race, I was SO NERVOUS. Here, I was running a mile. It was going to be over in hopefully less than 7 minutes. But I had terrible jitters. I was feeling so nervous even knowing it was going to be over super fast. I think that part of this was because of that. If I didn't start out quickly enough, there was no time to make up ground.

Eventually, after getting nervous, and then trying to get focused, they blew the horn and wave A was off. I don't have much to say about the race, other than that it HURT. Running that hard is painful.
I ran the race in 6:05. That was good enough for 7th woman overall (there were 6 elite women, to be clear...) and 3rd in my age group. I think that was pretty much nailing it.

Have you ever raced one mile on roads?

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Reflecting on GCM training

I want to take some thoughts around my previous training cycle to hash out how I am feeling and how things are looking going into this next marathon cycle.

I think that reflecting on training when it is over is going to be valuable to me when I am looking forward and trying to plan how I am feeling going into training.

As I announced previously, I am really gunning for the BQ time on September 10, 2016. I will be racing in “Chicagoland” (ok, western suburbs) in a state park. Now that was the initial goal. I wanted to BQ. But as things have progressed with the last training cycle I am not sure that going for a BQ is the best goal. I feel like I have made much more progress than just a BQ. Of course, I cannot say “just a BQ” because that is a big freaking deal, however, I refuse to sell myself short on goals.
I have not yet set an official goal, but I know that a 3:34:59 is not good enough for me.

But let’s talk about the actual training cycle.

Pros:
1. Added a fifth day of running (rather than one day of walking) which added to total mileage. Time on feet. Pounding on legs. All of that.
2. Diligent about core work. Minimum of 2x per week.
3. Time foam rolling and stretching.
4. Mental desire to train and push forward was much better and really focused on the end game.

Cons
1. Ran some interval splits or tempo miles “hot”
2. Need to continue to work to SLOW DOWN on easy miles. It was definitely improving, with paces hanging out in the 8:50 per mile pace or slower. But based on all of the reading that I have been doing about “easy miles” and heart rates and all of that… I want to continue to slow way the hell down.
3. Need to work on strength training more consistently. Even if it is just basic items, air squats, lunges, pushups, etc, in addition to the core work that I have been doing, I want to do that at least 2x per week.

Jen has been extremely helpful this cycle, of course, I did not expect anything less from her, of course, but I want to be more diligent myself in all of those things. So here are the things that I have come up with now for going forward into this next cycle:

1. Keep the 5 days per week of running
2. 4x week core
3. 2x week strength (even if just bodyweight work)
4. 1x week crosstraining
5. Update training log for Jen regularly.
6. Easy miles at 9:00/mile +
7. Max out around 60 miles/week

So let’s see how all of this goes.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Training Recap: Week of May 2

Last week was a relatively normal week of training, although I ran very few miles (12?) from my usual places. Lots of travel over the last week led to miles in more unfamiliar places, although it was good anyway.
So, let's look at the week.

Monday: 6.56 miles, strides, CORE
Tuesday: 40 minutes elliptical. Strength. CORE
Wednesday: 6 miles, easy pace, CORE
Thursday: 6.5 miles, strides, CORE
Friday: 6 miles, easy pace
Saturday: OFF
Sunday: 8.38 miles, Pure Barre class

33.44 miles
1x XT
1x lift
4x core
1x Barre class

Overall, a good first week back on the workout/running train.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Friday Five XXVIII

It is Friday! Yahoo!
1. Travelling this week was fun but also exhausting. I am glad to be home right now (and by home, I mean, at the office, but at least I got to sleep in my own bed, see J, and wake up Addie myself.)

2. I was consistent with training while I was travelling. I have not always been great about that, but I guess at the same time, this is only the third time I have traveled for work. The first time was December, and I was between training cycles. Last year was April and the week after my goal race for the spring so it was a down week.

3.I am kinda wiped out right now, mostly from the heavy travel schedule this week plus running plus staying up way too late when I was out of town (most nights I did not get home till 9 ish, and then I needed to do core, wind down, etc).

4. I wrote a post that I am going to have go live next week that is my reflections on my training cycle for the half and rolling into this cycle. I think looking back and forward is going to keep me focused and keep my eye on the prize.

5. Something came up in SD that I am seriously thinking about... I need to give it a little bit more thought before I declare anything...

Thursday, May 5, 2016

More time in SD.

Still in Sioux Falls. I have been waking up earlier than the group, and earlier than necessary. So the time is current 7:20 am here in SD, and I don't have anywhere to be until 8:30. I have already been up, spent 40 minutes on the elliptical (it was an XT day) and did some strength training. By then, it was only 6:20, so I went and ate some breakfast. Although I do not like this hotel quite as well as the one we usually stay at when we are here, I did like free breakfast!

I am definitely missing the family though.
J sent me this picture of Addie eating her dinner (mac & cheese, of course!) and it made me feel a little sad. She is such a goof. It is nice that she is at daycare though, so I am still seeing what she is up to all day with the updates and pictures.
Like this one. It was picture day at school so she wanted to wear a "pretty dress" for "Princess Addie." She is so lady like. Ha ha.

I am trying to map a route for my 6 mile run tomorrow morning. I figure if I have that one thing done, I will feel pretty prepared for tomorrow morning. I have 6 miles at an easy pace, and I would prefer to get outside rather than hit the treadmill. Our hotel is just outside of a shopping mall. The mall is approximately 1.57 miles around, and so I am considering just running a few loops around that tomorrow (Wednesday) in order to not worry too much about getting lost. Maybe on Thursday I can venture out a little bit further and try and actually run on some city streets. We will see.

All right, I am off to the bank!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Finding myself on a trip

Currently sitting in my hotel room in Sioux Falls, SD, when the rest of my coworkers that are here with me are out and about. I just felt like I needed to get to the room so I can wake up early in the morning and go for a run. (Yes, this post will come later, but I am working on writing this on Monday night at 11:00 PM.

Current view:
Cupcake wars and Facebook.

I love it.
I am already missing my family at home, but like I said last week, it is a good thing to get some time away and be able to be just "me" for a few days. Instead of going out, when I know I was not in the mood for a beer or anything, I came back to the room, did some blog work, and did some core. You do what you can, right?

I am hungry, but they were going out for pizza, which seemed like a poor choice. Now that I am back in training, I am trying to pay more attention to what I am eating. I am going to try and spend a little time to try and figure out what is going to work out best for me long term, as far as providing the proper and adequate nutrition for training, but still keep me lean and feeling good. Fingers crossed that I am able to figure that out this cycle.

And sleep. Obviously sleeping is going to be HUGE this cycle and figuring out how to make that work. I am going to continue to work on training early in the morning sometimes, hopefully even more often than I was the last training cycle. But sleep is going to be so important in making sure that I can make that work.

So, here in SD, we will see how I can get that started.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

GCM Half Marathon: Race Recap

Well, I guess it is time to recap the GCM, right? It has been more than a week since I ran the race, right? I mean, hell, by now, I have a one mile race recap to write too.
But anyway, let's get to it, and be ready for a potentially long one.

I was up at my mom's house and brewing coffee at 5 am for a 7 am race. I made my breakfast, which was coffee, a honey stinger waffle, and two scoops of Gen UCAN (I like the cran-razz best). I forgot to pack my shaker bottle, and so I had to stir up the UCAN, which is not super easy. It was a little bit clumpy. But I drank most of it.

I left my mom's house right around quarter to six. I wanted to have time to run a warm up, I had 1-2 miles planned, just shaking out my legs, making sure that they were feeling warm and ready to run. I parked in my usual place at the College of Engineering. It was early enough that there were plenty of spaces over there. The start line was in a new location, so I figured I would run in that general direction, nice and easy. When I jogged past Savage Arena, the location of the expo from the previous day, I went inside the arena for a last minute "real" bathroom stop.

After the bathroom, I finished my run over to the start line, ending my warm up with about 1.6 miles. I immediately got into line at the port-o-potties, went the last time, then got everything set up to go. I hung out outside of the corrals, got my headphones all squared away and my podcast started before getting into my corral. As more people started to pack into the staging area, I was able to be close enough to people to feel comfortable taking off the jacket I had worn and discarding it on the side of the corral. Sorry little sis, if you read this, it was your high school softball jacket.

It was not long before we were listening to the National Anthem, waving at the Mercy Health Life Flight, and heading down Bancroft Street toward Westwood.

Mile 1: 7:34
Mile 2: 7:19

After mile 2, we turned onto Secor, which was a bit of an uphill, but it was early in the race and I was early in the race and feeling good. My race plan was in tact on overall pace due to a slow first mile and a fast second (yeah, shouldn't do that... oh well!).

Mile 3: 7:19
Mile 4: 7:14
Mile 5: 7:21
Mile 6: 7:14

I was cruising through Ottawa Hills, feeling great and happy overall with my paces so far. I was definitely holding myself back a bit as we went through the section of the race where you see some of the later runners as you loop back down Indian Rd and past St. Ursula Academy. The next few miles are through Ottawa Hills, and there are a few rollers in there, but nothing to worry about at all. We went through the first relay exchange point (the only one on the half course), and then headed out of the neighboorhood onto Central Avenue where the half and full split. I was with the 3:15 marathon pacer, and starting to pull a little ahead of her at this point.

Mile 7: 7:16
Mile 8: 7:22
Mile 9: 7:13

I was still feeling pretty good at this point. I took a gel at mile 4.5, and another at mile 9. I am thinking the every 5 mile frequency works better for me than the every 6, so I wanted to make sure to get the benefits of the second gel before the end of the race, and so I took it at 9 instead of 10. Cruising back through Ottawa Hills into Old Orchard along a much straighter shot back to the University than we took out. When I got through the 10th mile, it was GO TIME.

Mile 10: 7:10
Mile 11: 7:01
Mile 12: 7:02
Mile 13: 6:49

Yeah, I was HURTING through the end there, but I was so proud of myself for getting it done.

Last 0.10 NAILED IT. (about 6 min pace)

I crossed the finish line in 1:35:33, 7:17 average pace. A HUGE PR. I was so happy. So pleased. I cannot believe all of the work that I put into this race worked out so well.
Caroline also ran a BIG PR in Toledo.

So there you have it. A successful race. Where my A goal was destroyed.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Training Recap: Week of April 25

So let's be honest, this was a tough as hell week for me, mostly because I was off for the most part. That is mentally trying for a gal, don't you think?

So with this being a recovery week, it is not as great as it normally is. But I am back on it this week. So get ready for that.

Monday: 4 miles, 8:51 pace, shakeout
Tuesday: OFF
Wednesday: OFF
Thursday: OFF
Friday: 3 miles including 1 mile race
Saturday: 6 miles
Sunday: OFF

13 total miles. Eeek. I kind of hate that feeling, but it is for the best, right?