An Adventure

This weekend, I had Friday and Saturday off from work, so I made plans with some of my teammates to meet up in our college town.  Yesterday, I ran a workout, took an ice bath, and headed down after breakfast. After thunderstorms and bad traffic, I finally arrived…and one by one, all of my friends cancelled.

AWESOME.  I almost turned around and drove 3 hours home.

However, it’s important to be comfortable spending quality time with yourself!  Sometimes things don’t turn out the way you expected for a  reason.  The trip turned out differently than I expected, but it was honestly still a good time!  The worst part was the traffic.

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Since I hadn’t been back in our college town since the end of spring semester, I spent a couple hours just enjoying being there.  It was pretty stormy and gray, which was perfect weather to do a bit of outlet shopping and then take myself on a date to my favorite coffee shop/restaurant.

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I enjoyed some Caribbean blackened salmon, grains and veggies, and a massive slice of “Chocolate Overload” cake while reading A Walk Across America, Part 2.

After awhile, I made plans to crash at a friends’ apartment.  I met her subletter, who was extremely nice, and we actually ended up talking for a long time that evening!

This morning, I made plans to long run with a new teammate and another acquaintance who were both in the area.  We met early at a local park and bike path, and I ran with them for 100 minutes (~13 miles) for a new personal distance record!  I hadn’t spent too much time with either of them, but the run flew by as we all shared stories.  At one point, one of them mentioned that we had already been running for almost an hour, and I was shocked!

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After 13 miles, I headed back to the locker room to stretch, roll out, and ice bath.  Talked to a couple track teammates that happened to be there at the same time.  Then, I headed into the historic area to wander around (read: get coffee and free fudge samples) at all the cute shops.

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I had never been in this Spice and Tea place before!  Their peach turmeric tea was amazing.

After running some errands, I went to tour the apartment complex that my roommate and I will be moving into this year!  We’re excited to start planning the set-up.

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The most important part 😉

Finally, I hit the road and drove home.  Traffic wasn’t great, and it took a pretty long time.  Stopped for a fruit-and-yogurt pit stop.  I’m done driving long distances for awhile 😉

Anyway, this solo trip was definitely out of routine for me.  I am not the world’s most extroverted person, and I generally don’t spend hours talking to new people.  But for the past 26 hours, I did!  I met some awesome people, made plans that I wouldn’t normally make, was generally productive, and was also comfortable spending time with myself.  I’m quite happy about this.  To top it all off, this morning’s long run was incredible!  I felt like I could have gone farther and faster. 🙂

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Summer Training Week 9 (57 miles + 30 min swim)

The sun is going down a tiny bit earlier each night, sudden thunderstorms crop up briefly and intensely throughout the afternoons, my brother is packing for sleepaway camp, somehow we are on week NINE of summer training!…summer goes on.

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Too hot even for me to eat hot oatmeal- but this (cold) bowl was dang good

I took today completely off from running but drove for over six hours, so I’m just as tired 😉  Also SO full.  But today was lots of fun!

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Week 9 (7/17-7/23):

Monday:  AM: drills, 7 miles on sidewalks, strides.  Very humid.  Didn’t feel super fresh, but other than that, went well.  Core circuit.  PM: 3 miles.  Sore/tired calves and feet.

Tuesday:  3 mile warm-up, drills, fartlek (15 min on- 3 off- 10 on- 3 off- 5 on), 2.5 miles cool down on canal.  90% humidity, sweated a lot.  Legs didn’t feel very fresh but rallied at the end.  Ice bath.  VERY tired later in the day.  Some unplanned food choices (read: ice cream binge) but I know that’s because I was so tired.

Wednesday:  AM: 5 miles sidewalks.  Very hot/humid.  Legs were tired but decent run.  Lift day 1- PRed on squats and had a good deadlift!  Last day of dog-sitting.  PM: 30 min swim, felt good to get off feet, very relaxing, but tired afterwards.

Thursday:  AM: 7 miles, drills, strides, 10 min core.  Hot/humid.  Felt okay.  PM: 3 miles treadmill @ 8:10 pace.  Cranky, tired at work afterwards.

Friday: 2 mile warm-up, drills, 4 x [6:00 on, 2:00 off], 2 mile cool down on bike path.  Hot/humid.  Ice bath.  Didn’t feel fresh but it went pretty well.  PM: skipped lift and took two naps instead.  #Yolo.

Saturday: 12 miles on sidewalks + bike path.  Best way to describe this run: boring?

Sunday: off

Total: 57 miles + 30 min swim

Highest volume week in awhile!  This week can be adequately summarized with the phrase, “Didn’t feel fresh but it went pretty well.”  At no point during the week did I feel fresh (not even on Monday- oops), but I think I rode the line between hard training and overstressing my body well!  (Although maybe the amount of power naps I took says otherwise.)

Slacked off on yoga this week and my mind was generally not relaxed.   Oh, well.  Will work on being more mindful this coming week.

It continued to be extremely hot and humid all week.  I am very diligent about getting out the door by 7 am at the latest, yet the temperature never dipped below 75 and the humidity never dipped below about 90%.  Lovely.  Just reminding myself over and over that these sauna-like conditions will pay off in the future!  My body is getting more efficient.

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Post-Friday workout sweatiness

Honesty moment of the week!  I’ve identified that I tend to be extremely cranky and binge-eat ice cream on the days where I work while tired from that day’s training session.  For some reason, this has been causing a lot of anxiety.  Yesterday, after twelve miles, I ate ice cream at work and honestly struggled a lot, mentally.  HOWEVER, today I road-tripped to see friends and indulged in delicious eats and was back to normal and didn’t give a crud.  It was awesome (and a relief!). I’m weird.  I don’t really understand.

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Hawaiian BBQ quesadilla with chicken, melted jack cheese, pineapple, onion, and BBQ sauce…HEAVEN

This morning, I picked up my friend who lives about 40 minutes from me, and then we drove 2.5 hours south to visit some other friends.  It was sweltering outside, but we still had a good time!  We got to meet one of our new teammates, and she was incredibly nice.  We ate lunch at a cute smoothie/sandwich place (I got the Hawaiian BBQ chicken quesadilla and a soy cappuccino), checked out consignment stores and boutiques, explored a spice store, and perused a used-books bookstore (my favorite).  I got 5 books for $3, and an adorable cat snoozed in the window of the bookstore.

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We took the scenic route home, and after winding through rural highway roads for a couple hours, we spontaneously stopped at a roadside ice cream barn that sources their dairy from local cows.  While I was still stuffed from lunch, I did taste the dark chocolate ice cream, and it was incredibly creamy and high-quality.  I will be back.

IMG_7271.jpgPhew!  After seven hours in the car, I’m pretty tired, a little bloated, and craving my bed. This next week is a bit of a down week- I’ll probably hit around 48-50 miles.  I am going to shoot for a 13-mile long run, though!  Hopefully, my legs will feel more refreshed from the low(er) mileage and I will #crushit 😉

Summer Training Week 4 (42 miles + 120 min XT)

#dead

#dead

#dead

#beenlisteningtomilkychancefor3hours

#revived to write this post 😉

Heck yeah, it’s time for another weekly summer training recap!  This week, I pushed my mileage a wee bit more (getting ready for that jump next week) and worked a lotttt of difficult shifts.  Definitely crashed and burned a bit by Saturday.  Got on a lot more soft surfaces, though!

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Long run views from this morning!

Week 4 (6/12-6/18):

Monday:  AM: 6 miles bike path.  Some soft(er) surface…for like a mile!  Core circuit.  Some foot pain but not too bad.  PM: 30 min swim.  Felt good.  Foot soak, roll, Tiger Balm.
Tuesday:  AM: 7 miles with Noah with one mile on the trails.  Significant foot pain during the second half of the run.  Drills and strides.  EXCELLENT lower body lift.  Pushed the weight and did the most unassisted parallel grip pull-ups I’ve ever done.  PM: 2 miles.  Crazy work shift until 10 pm per usual.
Wednesday:  60 min pool (50 swim, 10 aqua jog).  Was very pleasant.  1 hour slow flow yoga class.
Thursday:  AM: 7 miles @ 7:39 average on the C&O canal.  TBH felt pretty darn shitty.  PM: 30 min bike, felt good, upper body lift.  Busy work shift until 10 pm.
Friday:  AM: 7 miles on sidewalks/bike path.  Glute activation, drills, strides, core.  PM: 3 miles.  Tired from morning.  Long, crazy work shift until 11 pm.
Saturday: OFF.  Very glad for this rest day.  SO tired from the past couple days.  I felt like a zombie until like 6 pm.
Sunday:  10 miles @ 7:40 average at Manassas Battlefield.  All soft surface!  (Long grass/gravel/trails)  I had never run there before.  It was hot, humid, and hilly, but the views were unbeatable!

Total: 42 miles + 120 min XT.  
Dang…work this week kicked my ass.  Our ice cream store is getting more popular by the minute, and during today’s shift, we did not stop moving one time for five hours straight.  Also, the A/C in the store is broken, the freezers pump out hot air, and it never gets lower than 85 degrees.  After a hot, dehydrating ten-miler…I almost passed out into the dip case a couple times 😉  It’s just heat training, right??
I managed to get two soft-surface runs in this week, along with some sporadic dirt paths during a couple other runs!  So definitely an improvement from last week.
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Sleep this week wasn’t the greatest, unfortunately.  I worked a lot of late shifts, which riled me up at bedtime.  But I suppose it’s worth it for the paycheck!  #brokecollegestudentprobs
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And my nutrition has been okay, but not stellar- I’m just eating a lot of breads/baked goods and sugar, which is not prime fueling.  My post-run recovery foods are good (oatmeal, yogurt, eggs, nut butter, fruits, veggies…protein, complex carbs, healthy fats), but as the day progresses, I’ve been getting lazy!  And it’s hard at work when you’re just tryna stay alive, ya feel?  I get home after a long, hard shift and can’t tell if I’m physically ravenous or just mentally need some junk food.  Oh, well.  You live and learn (and lose a six-pack in the process, hehe).
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Homemade pumpkin bread

This morning’s long run was 80 degrees, 85% humidity, and very hilly with long grass, but the views were awesome!  I had originally planned to meet my friend out at the battlefields, but her foot has been bothering her, so I ran by myself.  Ran in silence over the hills and through the woods (literally) for the first half and then listened to a Runner’s World podcast during the second half.  It was kind of hard.IMG_6605.jpg
The new training week starts tomorrow, so gotta go rest up!  Running bright and early with one of my favorite running buddies.

Snowy mile repeats (6:09, 6:02, 6:00, 5:57)

Today marked the first snow of the year!  We had a workout on the schedule, but I’ve learned that the weather doesn’t care what your running plans are. 😉  The first flurries began to fall around 7 am and got progressively heavier as the day progressed.

My friend and I met up around 10:30 for our workout and ran three miles to the track to warm up.  It was 20 degrees outside with a “real feel” of eight.  To these Virginians, that was like the arctic tundra! (I’m sure all the Midwesterners/Northerners out there are laughing at us, but so be it.)

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Sorry, my phone’s in Spanish, but I wasn’t lying about the eight degrees thing

I layered up in tights, a long-sleeve tech shirt, an ear warmer, a sweatshirt, and light gloves.  My tightly tied sweatshirt hood did not leave my head the entire time, and my extremities quickly lost all feeling…

Keeping it real— honestly, neither my running buddy nor I were in the mood to do this workout.  The weather didn’t help.  I had a long day yesterday and actually fell asleep at 7:30 pm last night and woke up terribly disoriented two hours later.  I was groggy and exhausted this morning and my piriformis was hurting a lot and I almost called my coach and asked if I could please not do today’s workout.  We’ve both been working pretty much full-time throughout this entire break, and we sometimes feel burnt out.  5 am solo runs get old real quick.

But!!  Knowing that I had a running buddy counting on me forced me to get out the door.  And it’s not like this workout was optional.  We got to the track, and there were only a few other crazy souls out there braving the elements.  We did drills, and then it was time for the workout: 4-5 x mile with 2 minutes of recovery.  We agreed to start conservatively, get through 4 miles, and only do the fifth one if we were feeling amazing and if the weather cooperated.

The track got treacherous quickly as we went through the workout.  The first two miles flew by with relative ease (6:09 and 6:02).  My partner struggled to stay positive; the snow had picked up to the point where we couldn’t see anything, and the track was getting more and more slippery.  My eyebrows and clothes froze.

We hit 6:00 flat for the third mile, and I was feeling great!  Compared to the very short recovery in the past few workouts, two minutes was a luxury.  The last mile was a 5:57, and we called it a day because of the conditions on the track.  I finished the workout feeling counterintuitively cheerful.  It was eight degrees, blizzarding, and by all accounts miserable outside, but I had just crushed a workout that I really hadn’t wanted to do!  The effort had been comparatively conservative, too!

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The cool down was probably harder than the workout as the sidewalks had become un-runable over the past hour.  It took us awhile to get back.  But warming up inside afterwards was that much better. 🙂  I literally had icicles hanging from my eyelashes!!

Of course there will be some days where running just sucks.  It’s the nature of the beast.  But most of the time, you feel drastically better after a run or workout than before!  Getting out there is honestly the hardest part.  I’m so thankful that I had a running buddy to brave the snow and crush the track workout with me today– without each other, we probably would’ve either laid in bed or cried through some repeats on the treadmill.

And afterwards, I got together with two of my best friends from high school before one of them leaves to go back to school tomorrow.  We intended to play Scrabble and Bananagrams and do yoga, but we ended up just sitting and talking for two and a half hours!  Why does that always happen?? 😉

Workout Wednesday: Long tempo and pick-ups

I can finally write a snazzy-titled “Workout Wednesday” post!  My workouts are always on Tuesdays and Fridays, but I shifted my schedule to accommodate work. 🙂

Anyway, today marked the first workout back; it’s been almost two months since our last workout, so this was a great shock to the body.

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The workout: 3 mile warm-up, drills, 30 minute progressive tempo, 3 minute recovery, 4 x [60 seconds hard, 60 seconds easy], and 2-3 mile cool down.  I asked my friend to keep me company, which he did– major props because not many people would voluntarily run an 11 mile workout without having to!

We warmed up for three miles on the canal towpath and then did dynamic drills.  Due to completing my leg lift yesterday, it took awhile for my glutes and hamstrings to quit complaining!

The goal for the tempo was to keep it kind of conversational for the first half (~6:40s) and progress through the second half and hit the low 6:00s.  However…we started a little fast (around 6:15 pace).  We ran the entire tempo into the wind.  He struggled a little in the first half, and I struggled a little in the second half, but we were able to work together and finish 4.6-4.7 miles in 30 minutes for an average pace of 6:22.  Afterwards, we did 4 x [60, 60], and my legs couldn’t quite remember how to turn over quickly. 😉  We then cooled down for 2 miles for a total of 11ish for the day.

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Post-workout lunch: homemade kale pesto penne, steamed green beans, broiled fish, tomatoes, freshly grated Parmesan cheese (I also grated my hand while grating the cheese, so that was pleasant), tomatoes, roasted Brussels sprouts and carrots, and unpictured 2% lingonberry & strawberry Siggi’s, as well as orange Nuun.

Overall, the first workout back went really well!  The weather was windy but otherwise beautiful, the canal was scenic, and I’m happy to have had a great workout partner.

 

Intervals and Fall Festivities

Good morning!  I hope everyone is having a great Sunday.  After a few weeks of nice, cool weather, the temperatures rocketed back up to the 80s throughout the past week, which was less than ideal.  Luckily, they’re trending back down, and it is currently 56 degrees and sunny in the ‘burg.  I’m currently hanging in my favorite coffee shop, and I thought I’d take a break from reviewing for my Gender in Society midterm to catch up on what I’ve been up to.

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On Friday afternoon, we worked out on the track…but it was probably the worst workout day we have had as a team this season.  Almost everyone struggled- some had breathing issues, some didn’t feel well, etc.

The workout: 7 x 1000 with the first two close to threshold pace, the next two a bit faster, the fifth one “controlled all-out”, and the last two a bit slower.  We also ran 2 very controlled 200s (38-40 seconds) before starting the 1000s.

I hit 3:31, 3:36, 3:36, and my peroneals were burning up a storm.  So I ran the fourth one clockwise in lane 3 alone…didn’t help.  It was my slowest.  I think I ran above 3:40.  No good.  I was pissed off that the workout wasn’t going to plan, so I reset mentally and got ready for the “controlled all-out” portion.  Focused on quick turnover and ran 3:26- hey, at least it was faster than the others!  I hit 3:36 and 3:33 for my last two to at least finish off the workout strong.

The positive news- I’d never done 7 x 1000 in my life, so even though the first half of the workout sucked, I was proud that I rallied in the second half, even if the paces weren’t quite there!

The past 36 hours have been jam-packed with amazingly cliché fall activities 🙂  To decompress after the workout, I cooked an amazing dinner alone in the dorm kitchen.  Pan-seared steak, sauteed spinach, brussels sprouts, and sweet potatoes, all with olive oil, pepper, and garlic salt.  Afterwards, I went to my friends’ apartment and made some gigantic homemade chocolate peanut butter cups while we watched “How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days.”

Saturday’s long run was quite rough, as I felt nauseous and cut it short at 10 miles.  Afterwards, though, one of my friends and I had a spontaneously lovely morning of brunch, the farmer’s market, and peanut shop samples 🙂

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The afternoon was spent on the ferry and at the pumpkin patch, and some of us went out to dinner to celebrate my friend’s 21st birthday!

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I should probably continue to study for my midterm, so that’s all for now.  I’m taking a complete off day today as I already hit about 55 miles for the week and should probably not go higher than that.  The conference race is this coming Saturday already!  Yesterday was chock-full of indulgences (pumpkin pie, cappuccinos, bacon, molten chocolate lava cake!), so it’s back on the healthy train until Saturday at least 😉

It’s been a great weekend with lovely friends, a bit of drama, beautiful weather, sweaters, and fall fun.

How do we handle bad days?

Damn, my last post was so optimistic and positive!  Sorry in advance for the negativity today, but I hope I can come to some good conclusions.

On Monday, I ran six miles with my friend, and we hammered.  We were hitting 7:00 flat.  I was not recovering from my long run.  I skipped the strides just because they didn’t fit in to where I had run, and I did upper body circuits and abs when I got home.  I’ve recently been really into Siggi’s yogurt, and I tried the orange and ginger flavor for post-run fuel.  It was incredible.IMG_8687.JPG

Yesterday started out mediocre and turned horrible, both running and otherwise.  After some emotionally traumatizing family issues last night, I went to bed emotionally and physically exhausted, slept badly and wasn’t particularly in the mood to work out.  The temperature rocketed up to a sunny 80 degrees (what happened to last Friday’s ice storm??), I sat in the car for two hours while taking my mom to the airport, and I was annoyed at having to bear more responsibility for my brothers and the house this week.  Not an ideal way to get ready for a workout.

The workout was simple: 4 x 1600m at 6:00-6:10 with 1 minute recovery.  I warmed up for 20 minutes, did drills and strides, and started the workout.  My first 1600 was a 6:06 and felt fine, although once I stopped, my heart was pounding really hard.  I took 90 seconds and started the second 1600.  This one was immediately bad; my legs wouldn’t move, I was nauseous due to the heat and got even more upset because of that, and it escalated.  I think I hit like a 6:35 or 6:40.

I called my coach, and she told me to get off the track and do a fartlek of 4-3-2-2-1-1 minutes with half-time recovery.  I ran 5 minutes to the bike path and did the fartlek, but I could tell early on that the heat was really getting to me.  (Remember how much trouble I had once it started getting warmer last year?)  After barely completing the second 2-minute interval, I cut off the 1 minute intervals and jogged back to the track.  Guzzled water and jogged a 1.5 mile cool down for a total of 9ish miles today.

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I only had time for 5 minutes of lunges and squats and no stretching before I had to get in the car and go pick up my brother.  I wolfed down a cookies and cream Quest bar, hopped on the highway, and sat in front of his school for 20 minutes with no one answering their phones before I learned that he was at home the whole time!  So I was sedentary for 50 minutes right after a horrible workout for no reason.  My mood worsened.  I sped out of the middle school and stretched and took an ice bath the second I got home.

Anyway, yesterday was definitely not the best day.  But it’s important to stay positive.  I’ve already recognized the factors contributing to the shitty day: heat, hammering my maintenance run yesterday, sitting in the car, emotional trouble, etc.  But hey, at least I got some work in!  Even if it wasn’t quality work.  And I’ve been doing really well with balancing mostly quality foods with rare indulgences recently, and I’ll continue to drink lots of water, and try to get some sleep and recover well so that the next workout is better.

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We can’t control everything, and sometimes things just don’t go our way.  But we can make sure to do well at the things we can control: fueling properly, going to bed at a reasonable time, staying off of social media (I need to work on this!), and working through our emotions (I need to work on this, too!)  I’m a little bitter that this spring break isn’t going to be as “spring break”-y because I’m essentially stuck babysitting my brothers all week, but I need to get over that and focus on everything I’m lucky to have.

Last night’s dinner of leftover butternut squash/kale/Gruyere casserole, roasted pork, roasted sweet potatoes with cinnamon and coconut oil, and (unpictured) mini heirloom tomatoes cheered me up slightly 🙂

Training recap (2/22-3/6)

I may have given myself mild hypothermia from my post-long run ice bath today.

Oops.

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Anyway, as I sit here drinking hot tea huddled in blankets with the heater going full blast, I’ll recap the past two weeks 😉

Finally, finally, finally after a rollercoaster month of inconsistent training, I’ve been able to complete two weeks of “normal” training.  My body is feeling it…but that’s a good thing.

Week of 2/22-2/28:

Monday: 6 miles, drills, strides, upper body lift
Tuesday: 20 minute warm-up, drills, strides, fartlek (8 x [2:00h, 1:00e, 1:00h, :30e]), 15 min cool down, lower body lift (Total = 10 miles)
Wednesday: 60 min stationary bike
Thursday: AM: 40 min elliptical.  PM: 6 miles, drills, strides, upper body lift, yoga
Friday: drills, 10 min run, 33 min progression run, 10 min run, 4 x 400m w/ 200m jog, 15 min cool down (Total = 11 miles)
Saturday: 3 miles
Sunday: 11 miles

Total: 47 miles, 100 min XT

Week of 2/29-3/6:

Monday: 6 miles, drills, strides, upper body lift
Tuesday: 20 min warm-up, drills, strides, [2 x 1200m 4:42, 4:38, 2 x 800m 2:53, 2:54, 6 x 400m 80, 80, 78, 77, 76, 74], 23 min cool down, lower body lift (Total = 10 miles)
Wednesday: 60 min XT pool (30 swim, 30 aqua jog)
Thursday: AM: 40 min stationary bike.  PM: 6 miles, drills, strides, upper body lift, yoga
Friday: 21 min warm-up, 4 mile pace run (6:35, 6:33, 6:22, 6:23), 24 min cool down, lower body lift (Total = 10 miles)
Saturday: 25 min stationary bike, core, push-ups
Sunday: 11 miles

Total: 43 miles, 125 min XT


Three cheers for real training!  Putting in the work makes me satiated like nothing else.  I was exhausted at the end of last week but less exhausted this week (although this morning’s long run is starting to hit me…)

Last week’s long run was actually horrible; I felt shitty right from the get-go but struggled through by myself while progressively feeling worse the whole run.  This week’s long run was a lot better: I ran a somewhat erratically paced 5 miles with a friend from high school and then 6 miles by myself.  My iPod died after 6 minutes by myself, though!

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I sped up once I was on my own…miles 7 and 8 were uber hilly

This week’s workouts were really solid.  Tuesday was my first full track workout in seven weeks, and even though I didn’t feel amazing, it was thrilling to be completely back on the track.  Friday’s workout was “on your own”, so my friend and I headed out at 7 am in the middle of a freezing rain storm.  Ice pellets were literally stinging our faces to the point where we couldn’t open our eyes during the warm-up, but the workout itself was not bad.  For the conditions, it was a strong effort.

Knock on wood, I’m feeling good about my fitness level.  My first outdoor race (the 3k) is in a little less than two weeks, and I want to be ready.  I’m still not sure if I’ll be focusing on the 1500-3k or 3k-5k this spring, but I am open to whatever my coaches want me to do.

One of the perks of being home is the farmer’s market right down the street, so of course I stopped by before the long run.  Stocked up on butternut squash, spaghetti squash, pink lady and goldrush apples, and kale!

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And for my post-long run lunch, I had Siggi’s blueberry yogurt, a piece of 80% dark chocolate, an apple with peanut butter, and the same quinoa and chili I had for lunch yesterday!

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The afternoon has been filled with more house moving related activities, and now it’s time for a nap.  In addition to training this week, I’ll hopefully be doing fun DC activities and road trip adventures!

Running reunion

Two running reunions happened over the past few days!

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Our dream team from two years ago reunited 🙂  It was great to see all these girls.

The workout today: Winter finally decided to show its face, and it was 15 degrees this morning.  I waited until the afternoon to run, since it was a whopping 30 degrees at that point…

Anyway, 20 minute warm-up to my high school’s track, drills, strides, and then the same 6 x 800 as last week.  My goal was to run it faster, and I did.  2:53, 2:51, 2:52, 2:52, 2:54, 2:51 (compared to 2:55-2:56 last week).  I took 80-90 seconds rest again instead of a minute.  Gotta work down to shorter rest!  It worked for Quenton Cassidy in Once a Runner, amirite…

Too bad I’ll never be a 3:52 miler and also Cassidy doesn’t exist.

Second reunion:  My best friend showed up at the track during my workout, which I was running alone.  Did I ever mention what happened last April on this blog?  No?  Well, this can be my second reflection.  My best friend and I have been running together since 2008, but last April, she tripped over me, tore her ACL and meniscus, and had to defer a year because she was going to a service academy and that incident caused her to fail her medical exam.  So yeah.  I kind of ruined her life.  Luckily, I don’t think she hates me too much…

Anyway, she wasn’t able to run (or even walk) for a really long time but has slowly been building back up.  And today, she came on my cool down with me!! After not running with her for over eight months, those 20 minutes were pretty awesome…

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Total for today: 8 miles + 7 minutes of core.  I kind of forgot that as my mileage increases, the workout-day mileage also increases, so I actually had 9 on my schedule.  Oh, well.  I have 10 scheduled for Friday but only a 4 mile workout (+ 5 miles warm-up/cool down), so depending on how my legs feel, I think I’ll do a double of 8 miles in the morning and 3 in the afternoon to catch up on all my mileage and stay on track for 42.  Or something like that.

Afterwards, we cheered on our high school team during their workout and said hi to the coaches.

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seems counterintuitive…

I received a bunch of Amazon gift cards for Christmas and decided to be adventurous.  Therefore, I bought chia seeds and Wild Friends’ vanilla espresso almond butter.  Living life on the wild side, I know 😉  Anyway, my oatmeal this morning was excellent: 1/2 cup quick oats, 1 cup water, the Wild Friends almond butter, banana, frozen raspberries, chia seeds and cinnamon.  SO GOOD.  For lunch I had leftover roasted brussels sprouts and carrots, sweet potato, Progresso lentil soup, raspberry Fage yogurt, and 1/2 a PB&J.  Post-workout was a KIND bar, cherry Fage, and toasted French bread with olive oil.  And some chocolate chips 😉  Dinner was broiled citrus-garlic salmon, brown rice, and steamed spinach, and dessert was frozen berries.

Yesterday evening, I went to Georgetown with some friends.  We walked around by the river and the canal, and we watched a million police cars and fire trucks and ambulances make a huge scene.  No idea what was going on.  I also got a dark chocolate cupcake.

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So flattering. The cupcake was very good. (It was NOT Georgetown Cupcake)

Tomorrow I have cross training!

 

Bipolar weather, family dysfunction, food, friends, training…

I hope everyone had a merry Christmas!  Mine was…interesting.  Lots of family drama.  Ran with one of my high school teammates that I hadn’t seen since October.   I really wanted to do a Christmas “bun run” (Santa hat, red sports bra, and buns) because it was 70 degrees, but I refrained from doing so.  We did 6 miles at around 8:00 pace.  Not too interesting.

She did take this sneaky picture...do you like my snowman socks?

She did take this sneaky picture…do you like my snowman socks?

On Sunday, 70 degree temperatures left me drenched after my “long” run (8 miles at 7:22 pace) even as the sun went down.

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I told myself to go pretty easy on the long run, but…I didn’t.  Oh, well.  It was a good run.  I tried out the waterproof iPod shuffle and new earbuds I got for Christmas to use for runs and aqua jogging/swimming, and it was great!  The second half of the run was pretty hilly and fast.

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Total last week: 28 miles running, 60 minutes cross training.

This week, my training increases to 37 miles and the normal hour of cross training on Wednesday.  Ideally, I’ll be back at normal mileage (45) in 2 weeks.

After days and days of disturbingly warm temperatures, in the span of 12 hours the temperature dropped from 70 to 40.  Ridiculous.  At least it almost feels like winter…

On Monday morning, I ran with one of my college teammates!  She’s four years older than me and really fast, so I was afraid I’d die from the long run and running with her, but it was actually a very nice run. 🙂 6 miles on the trails around Great Falls Park.

Today was my first workout back!  I warmed up for 2.5 miles to my high school track and did drills and strides.  The workout was 6 x 800m (3:00-2:45) with 1 minute recovery, but I took 80-90 seconds recovery, which I think was a good decision.  The workout went well, even though the track was completely deserted!   The overcast weather wasn’t exactly motivational, but I got it done.

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I ran 2:56, 2:55, 2:56, 2:55, 2:56, 2:55, which is about what I was expecting for the first workout back.  It was a little bit of a shock to the system but overall not too bad at all.  I then cooled down 2.5 miles back to my house and stretched and rolled.  Total: 8 miles.  No ice bath today.

Enjoy this goofy post-workout face I sent to my friend

Enjoy this goofy post-workout face I sent to my friend

Post-workout lunch: Plain Greek yogurt with a banana; orange juice; Ritter Sport Extra Fine dark chocolate (my vice); 2 mini sweet potatoes with a little bit of brown sugar and butter; 2 bowls of black beans and rice (I mixed black beans, cooked brown rice, green peppers, tomatoes, onions, salt and pepper, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, and reduced sodium chicken broth and cooked it on low heat for awhile).  The black beans and rice bowls were spicy!

Not pretty but delicious!

Not pretty but delicious!

I’m really going to zero in on my nutrition over the coming days/weeks/months.  After many, many indulgences over the past month, I have some work to do to get back to fueling optimally.  I think I may use this blog as sort of a food log to keep me accountable.  While being home allows me to eat fresher and more organically and all that nonsense, I also have constant access to an unlimited supply of food.  Including way more meat than I was eating over the past several months.  Also, since my time isn’t taken up by schoolwork, I have more time to eat… Needless to say, it’s a slippery slope.

That being said, I reunited with one of my good friends yesterday and ate four pieces of chicken-mushroom-spinach-deliciousness pizza 🙂 Worth it.  But now I’m on the grind.

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