Hump Day/Tempo Tuesday Recap

Happy Hump Day!  It’s been a long day.  This morning, my body once again decided that it didn’t need sleep.  I woke up at 4 am, again at 5 am, and then dozed until 6:20 when I decided to get my run in before my 8 am.

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I had class from 8 to 2, so I ate breakfast during our 8 am Business Analytics pressure cooker.  I’m sure my group members appreciated the weird beet-pink Picky Oats 😉  After class, I cancelled my training room appointment (lol) and spent four hours outside in the glorious weather, napping and getting some work done.  Went to the dining hall for dinner, hung out with the guy’s team while they did stupid reckless things as college guys tend to do, finished tomorrow’s Spanish presentation, and am now eating chocolate peanut butter ice cream before bed ❤

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Anyway, I wanted to recap yesterday morning’s workout!  It went much better than last Tuesday’s fiasco.  We warmed up for a little over two miles, did drills and strides, and then got instructions from our coach.  Our workout was 4 x 2000m on the track with 1:30 recovery between the first 3 and 2:00 before the last one.  My group (of about six) was supposed to start at 90 seconds per lap (6:00 mile pace).

We ran the first 2k retro (backwards on the track), the second one the right way, the 3rd retro, and the 4th the right way.  Our 2k splits ended up being 7:30, 7:25, 7:22, 7:18.  (For reference, the mile splits within the 2ks were 6:00, 5:57, 5:54, 5:51.)  The first 2k was perfectly paced, thanks to my teammate who is actually a metronome.  We split 1:30, 3:00, 4:30, 6:00, 7:30. IMG_8685.jpg

A 2k is a long interval, and 20 laps of work on the track was a little daunting!  But we got halfway through, our group was packed up and working together well, and it became more doable.  Everything felt controlled until the last 600ish of the last 2k.  That’s when I thought, “All right, this is definitely ‘balls to the wall’.”

Afterwards, we cooled down for about 20 minutes, refueled and rope stretched and headed to lift in the weight room.  My soleus had been bothering me, so I went to the training room after lift to get it worked on.  The scraping and active release hurt so badly, but it also helped so much!  I had to laugh afterwards when the trainer who bludgeoned my soleus said, “I hope we can still be friends.”

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Post-workout steak dinner…heck yes

Overall, the track workout went really well.  I’m excited to recover, rehydrate, fuel up (with ice cream, oops), and get ready for the race this weekend.  I don’t want to jinx anything, but I think I can have a strong performance, and it would be great to redeem myself from last year!

 

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Teeth! LDOC workout! Eats!

But first: GUESS WHAT– I GOT MY PERMANENT TEETH YESTERDAY!!  RIP to the denture life!!

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After crushing a stressful formal business presentation that our group had been working on for two months, I headed to my dentist to get the teeth.  Then it was back to school to prepare for a Spanish presentation.  And no, I haven’t eaten an apple yet 😉

Anyway, happy last day of classes!  I actually did not have class today, but I spent the morning finishing a final paper for one of my Spanish classes before getting ready for the last Friday afternoon workout of the year.  (Meanwhile, it seemed as though everyone else at school was partaking in the last day of classes tradition of day-drinking…)

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It was a hot one- 88 degrees and very sunny- so I wasn’t sure how the workout was going to go.  But we prepared well and were very vigilant about hydrating and icing throughout, so it ended up going well!

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Oats, almond milk, shredded zucchini, egg whites, spices, blueberries, strawberries, and banana

Pre-workout breakfast: probably the biggest bowl of (z)oats I’ve ever made, plus a fried egg.  I kind of forgot to shake out this morning, but oh well.  Yesterday’s practice was a scavenger hunt that was more like a 7-mile fartlek, so my legs were trashed and probably benefited from the extra recovery!

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The best way to use all the peanut butter in the jar

The workout: 2.5 mile warm-up, drills, strides, 3 x 600 (400 @ 80 and kick the last 200, I ran 36-37) with 2:30 recovery, 6 x 400 at cruise pace (~83) with 1 minute recovery, 4 x 400 with 2 min recovery (77, 77, 77, 75), 2 mile cool down, rope stretch, ice bath.  I stayed hydrated before and after with coconut water, Nuun, and a variation of the “Can’t Beet Me” smoothie from Run Fast Eat Slow.

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1/2 frozen banana, frozen raspberries, steamed beets, fresh ginger, almond milk, vanilla protein powder, and a splash of coconut water

After the workout, our team went out for dinner before having fun with our annual paper plate awards and senior celebration.  My friend and I split a roasted beet salad and prosciutto garlic tomato pizza.

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And my paper plate award was pretty accurate- I will admit that sometimes I get a little competitive/aggressive…

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I’m going to be training through the conference championships with the rest of the team, mostly to give me something to do over finals.  My finals schedule includes two small projects due next week, but no actual exams until May 10!  I’m hoping to be able to travel to watch the team compete at conferences next weekend 🙂

Transparency time: Lately, there have been a couple instances where I’ve struggled mentally with eating a lot of rich food and not having my stomach/digestion behave perfectly.  I don’t count calories or macros or whatever (I’ve experimented with MyFitnessPal in the past, but our bodies know what they’re doing.  It’s our brains that screw everything up 😉 but I know that I perform better when I eat a lot.  For goodness’ sake, I just ran a 5k 90 seconds faster than I was running two years ago!  It’s just mentally hard sometimes to eat twice as much as everyone around you.

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IDK why I’m including this picture- I just like it

I’m just trying to remind myself of how much fuel we need to fuel the work that we’re doing.  It is ALWAYS better to overfuel than to under-fuel.  There are myriad examples that show how underfueling doesn’t work, ever.  And skillet cookies and mac and cheese will really just help this body handle mileage, intensity, and hot weather even better, right??  I’ll take that over miserably munching on raw vegetables and ignoring hunger cues any day.  The other day, we did clearances for next year, and I found out my weight for the first time in like two years.  And guess what?   It hasn’t changed at all since the first day of my freshman year of college.  Not that weight means anything at all- I’m way more efficient and can run a sub-18 minute 5k and do 20 chin-ups and handle 60 miles per week now- but I’m just saying our bodies are so smart and everyone has a go-to natural body weight and we need to eat a lot!

(Did that make any sense?  No?  It’s fine.)

Anyway, just a few finals, projects, and induction into the collegiate Spanish national honor society to get through before I am halfway done with undergrad!  I’ll be a junior in college before I know it.  Isn’t that crazy??  Sometimes it feels like I just got here!!

Life update: turning 20!

Sorry for the lack of posts!  This time of the semester is when the schoolwork really starts to pick up.  But it’s Saturday night, and I think everyone deserves a break from the grind 🙂

Anyway, I turned 20 on Valentine’s Day!  The day started off with a solid workout (3 mile warm-up, 2k-1k-2k-1k cruise intervals on the track between 5:40-5:55 pace, 3 mile cool down).  I went to class, lifted, went to the training room…not too special of a birthday 😉  But I did get to go out to dinner with friends and feasted on my favorite Caribbean blackened salmon, followed by (free) chocolate cheesecake!

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The various birthday gifts I received from my college friends coincidentally had a theme: nut butter!  It was pretty funny.  Also, my roommate got me the cutest poster (my all-time favorite movie is Up):

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In other news, the dental implant process is progressing!  If you recall, the dentist placed the anchor screws in December, and he placed the abutments this past Thursday. Unlike the screws, the abutments stick out of my gums, and they are not fully covered by the dentures.  So right now, the metal screws kind of make it look like my gums are rotting.  I’ll spare you a picture of my current gremlin self 😉  Three weeks from now, they’ll take impressions, and just a couple weeks after that, I’ll finally have permanent implants!

Unfortunately, the foot issues have persisted throughout the last two weeks.  I actually ran normal mileage last week (54 miles + 60 min XT) but had to switch to cross training halfway through this week.  A lot of cross training.  There’s not much the training room can do since the problem is stemming from my bunions, and surgery is the only real long-term solution.  So we’re just focusing on pain maintenance for now.

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I’m frustrated because I feel like I’m in good shape but am not progressing due to the limited running I can do right now.  On a more positive note, I’ve been taking melatonin every night and getting almost enough sleep, and I feel like a human being again!  I’ll do a training recap tomorrow!

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Great view…right?

Anyway, my family came down this morning after my long effort (I split it up into 30 minute bike, 6 mile run, 30 minute bike).  We went out to brunch, and everyone ate an astronomical amount of food!

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Yes, this was just my meal

Afterwards, we did a bit of shopping and headed to a family birthday party, and I’ve spent the rest of the day doing some more schoolwork.  Some friends and I are having a joint birthday party tonight, so I’m looking forward to that.

I’ll try to carve out time to write a true training recap tomorrow, but no guarantees!  So far, I think I’m doing a good job of staying on top of the coming week’s stupid workload, but time will tell…

Feliz Navidad

Good morning!  I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, religious or secular or whatever your lifestyle preferences entail.  My family hosted our extended step-family, complete with four babies under the age of two.  The house was loud.  My dog was confused.

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Christmas Eve brought foggy, rainy, miserable conditions– perfect for an 8 mile run with my friend from high school!  The normally packed bike path was completely deserted and a bit spooky.  Later on, we partook in our normal tradition of making homemade pizza, then attended the night church service.  We also exchanged ornaments that represented something meaningful that happened to each person over the past year.  I got a running wings ornament (shocking!), my brother received a driver’s license ornament, etc.

On Christmas morning, my family managed to sleep in until 7 am!  Unheard of.

After opening stockings, we cooked a huge breakfast of pancakes, scrambled eggs, bacon, fruit salad, and coffee and tea.  We finished opening gifts- among mine were Run Fast Eat Slow, a Trader Joe’s gift card, and a Wawa gift card!  Then, I went out for my long run.  It was supposed to be 11 miles, but I forgot to look at my watch until I was way past the turnaround point.

I stopped before I got back to my house so as to not go over mileage too much, but I still ran 11.29 miles at 7:06 pace.  Whoa.  The run went pretty well- I didn’t realize I was going 7 minute pace until I looked down at the halfway point.  The last three miles were pretty hard, and my feet, calves, and hamstrings really hurt from the sidewalk pounding. I also ran in a Santa hat the entire time 😉

The rest of the day was spent preparing for the Christmas dinner! (and maybe reading Run Fast Eat Slow cover to cover.)

The 100% homemade feast: turkey, gravy, cranberry sauce, roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, two kinds of stuffing, crescent rolls, beef wellington, vegan eggplant/mushroom roast, apple crisp, pumpkin pie, and vegan almond butter brownies.

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Overall, Christmas was lovely and hectic 🙂

Anyway, here’s a recap of the past week of training: (12/19-12/25)

  • Monday: AM: 4 early morning treadmill miles.  PM: 5 miles + core.  Felt good on both runs. Probably should’ve gone slower during the afternoon one.
  • Tuesday: AM: lift day 1.  PM: 9 miles sidewalks…middle 4 miles with former teammates/high school team which was fun!
  • Wednesday:  4 early morning treadmill miles, took it pretty easy, sore legs.
  • Thursday: AM: 6 early morning miles outside in the dark with a snazzy flashing arm band, felt good.  PM: 30 min bike + lift day 2. I did 20 total unassisted chin-ups.
  • Friday: off
  • Saturday: AM: 8 miles with my friend Noah, rainy, cold, but fun. PM: 2 miles, mentally I didn’t really want to, but I got it done.
  • Sunday: 11.29 miles at 7:06 pace
Total: 49 miles, 30 min bike
Last week, I started working an internship four days per week from 8-4 pm.  The commute takes about an hour when traffic is bad (which it usually is…shoutout to DC)  This means that on the days I work and run, I have to wake up early to get my run in, then commute/work from 7 am to 5 pm, then do whatever double or other training I have.
On Thursday, I had to bike and lift after work, and I got stuck in DC traffic until past 5.  I was starving, angry, and changed my mind 37 times on the way home about whether I would actually go bike and lift.  I ended up making a pit stop at the grocery store, devouring a bar, hammering out my cross train and lift, and getting home at 7 pm, at which point I crashed really, really hard.  I have a new respect for all the dedicated athletes who work full-time and have terrible commutes.  This shit is hard!
Back to the grind tomorrow.  Happy Holidays 🙂

Thanksgiving and last week of classes!

Merry Tuesday!  Sorry I haven’t written in a couple weeks.  I’m done with class for today and am spending the rest of this rainy afternoon in our library coffee shop enjoying peppermint tea and a cranberry scone.  I just finished my last accounting problem set and gender reading notes, and I got an A on a Spanish paper, so I’m going to take a break to write a post 🙂

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I took a week completely off from running and ran every other day last week for a grand total of seventeen miles, along with some intermittent core routines and a yoga session.  It was great to go home for Thanksgiving break; I got to see family and lots of friends and spend five whole days doing no work whatsoever!

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We spent Thanksgiving dinner at a family friends’ house.  Didn’t eat until 8 pm because we couldn’t interrupt the football game!! (I’m still salty the Redskins lost.)  But dinner was worth the wait.

We spent the meal saying what we were thankful for.  I’m thankful for a supportive, mildly crazy family;the ability to go to a wonderful school; my friends, teammates, coaches, professors, and dentists (haha); good food; and many other things.  Our family friends’ adorable 4-year-old son kept putting in his two cents throughout dinner: “I’m thankful for Mom and pizza and Dad and chicken!”

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My (yes, younger) brother also deigned to take a picture with me!  Will wonders never cease? He makes me look so short…

 

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I also got to see my three best friends from high school!  One of them goes to West Point, so I hadn’t seen her since June!

My friend convinced me to brave the Black Friday madness, so he and I spent 3 hours at the biggest mall in the area in the middle of the day.  RIP to my bank account– but at least I got lots of Christmas presents for friends and family!

Even with all the fun reunions and family gatherings, I experienced abnormal depression intermittently throughout the entire break.  It was strange and a little scary.  I think the combination of being home for a short vacation as a college student, not running, some family issues, and social issues made for a tenuous emotional situation.  I could physically feel myself getting happier on the train ride back to campus on Sunday night.  I do love being home, but I think at this point, I love being at school more 🙂

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Who wouldn’t love it here?

Speaking of school, this week marks the end of classes, followed by two weeks of finals!  I have a pretty solid finals schedule, and I’m going to try to maintain healthy (physical and emotional) study habits throughout.  I might expand upon this later!

We’re starting to gradually build our mileage back up this week but keeping all of our runs at maintenance pace.  You never realize how much running keeps you stable until you’re forced to go without it for a little while 😉  I’m keeping it low for a little while (around 28 this week) before increasing over the next few weeks until I’m back at 55-60ish.  We’ll start workouts after Christmas, and our first race will be after we get back from winter break in mid-January.  I was going to write my track goals, but this post is already pretty long, so I’ll do that for the next post!  For now, I’ll just keep enjoying shorter maintenance runs and the lovely aches and pains that come after time off… 🙂

PS: 26 days until Christmas!!

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.

Silver diner, spaghetti squash, Squarebars!

This is a more positive, mostly food-related post 🙂

My meals have been on point recently.  I’ve also been waking up at 5:30 or 6 every day (usually not by choice), which makes the days feel really long.  Like, ready-for-lunch-by-9:30-am-and-bed-by-9-pm long.

Anyway, I decided to indulge yesterday because balance is very important.   Another sunny 80-degree day (which I enjoyed more because I didn’t have to run) brought a morning walk with the dog, a 3,000 meter swim in the pool (phew), and an afternoon with one of my good friends (shoutout to her because I know she reads this blog!).

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Lunch was absolutely delicious: tomato-mozzarella-pesto sandwich, sweet potato fries, and coleslaw.  I also ordered coffee..which I’ve been drinking a lot more recently…ahhh!

Afterwards, we drove out to a nature preserve and went on a mini hike and enjoyed the good weather.

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My friends have recently been singing praises for Halo Top ice cream, so I stopped by Whole Foods later in the day to pick some up.  I was really skeptical because ice cream is supposed to be unhealthy- that’s why it’s so good- and I’m not a big proponent of sugar alcohols such as erythritol.  But the rest of the ingredients list was impressive, and I read reviews beforehand so I knew I wasn’t falling for some nasty healthy-food scam 😉  I picked up a pint of vanilla bean Halo Top, along with a few other items because you really can’t just get one thing at Whole Paycheck Whole Foods.

Once I got home, I immediately tried the ice cream.  On a scale of 1-10, 1 being nauseating and 10 being just as good as Ben and Jerry’s, I’d honestly give it a 7!  It was impressively creamy, although not *quite* as creamy as regular ice cream.  The vanilla bean flavor was on point, and it was a refreshing treat after the 80-degree hike.  Unfortunately, it’s expensive ($5.99!), so I don’t think I’ll be buying it a lot.  But it was definitely good!

I ate the chocolate coated almond spice Squarebar today, and it was so good.  I don’t even know why I liked it so much, but I did.  I saved half for after my afternoon run, and I actually thought about it the whole run.  10/10 would recommend.  It was pretty much a candy bar, but with 12 grams of protein!

Another “treat”: a few nights ago, I made energy bites!  I went off of this recipe, but as long as you have oats, nut butter, and something to bind them (like chia or flax seeds), you can pretty much add in anything you want!

Ingredients: oats, pumpkin, almond butter, cinnamon, chia seeds, vanilla, maple syrup, almonds, craisins, and bittersweet chocolate chips.  They’re chewy and cookie-dough-like, and they’re utterly delicious.

Additionally, my new running shoes arrived 🙂

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My team is sponsored by New Balance, but I’ve tried running in multiple different NB models so far, and none of them have worked for me.  The apparel is great, the spikes are great…I just can’t run in the trainers!  So I’m sticking with Mizuno for the time being.

Today, I actually had a running double (as opposed to a cross train/run double)!  I ran 3 miles in the morning and did my upper body strength routine, and then in the afternoon I ran 6 miles and did strides.  Honestly, I had negative thoughts about my second run all day until I actually did it, and then it turned out to be a really good run!  It was still 80 degrees and humid, though.

I made dinner for my brothers and myself tonight: spaghetti squash and sauteed shrimp, zucchini, red bell pepper, spinach, and garlic in olive oil.  And Prego because I’m not that fancy 😉

The finished product (sorry for the shitty quality; the lighting in my house is bad and I’m not exactly a pro photographer)

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This is probably one of the best meals I’ve ever made.  It was my first time making spaghetti squash, and it turned out so well!!  I ate two full bowls, and now I’m ridiculously full.  Good, wholesome, nutrient-packed foods make me so happy.  My youngest brother even liked it a lot, although my other younger brother stuck to white pasta and tomato sauce…oh well…

Time to eat some more vanilla bean Halo Top for dessert 🙂

♫Is it too late now to say sorry♫…

…to my coaches and my calf for running yesterday’s workout way too fast?

But first: Monday’s lunch!  ‘Twas simple yet gorgeous.

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PB&J, carrots, sugar snap peas, pretzels, edamame, and plain Greek yogurt with strawberries

After an easy (finally!) six miles on Monday, my calf wasn’t feeling great but the rest of me was raring to go.   The workout was the usual 20 minutes warm-up, drills, and strides, and then 4 sets of 3-4 x 400.  The freshmen (so, me) were instructed to only do 12 total, so I did 4 sets of 3.  The first set was supposed to be at lactate threshold pace, the second set at 10k pace, the third at 5k-3k pace, and the fourth at 3k-1500 pace, with rest time increasing as pace increased and a lap between sets.

But…um…it’s really hard to go lactate threshold pace for 400s.  The “comfortably hard” pace is ideal for pace runs and sometimes even mile repeats, but for speedwork?  Clearly, this workout stressed control, and I failed miserably.

Anyway, I warmed up to the track and cycled through the usual dynamic stretches and strides.  My first set of 3 was 87, 86, 85, which is definitely not my lactate threshold pace but definitely not hard either.  I was itching to go faster.  This pattern of “way too fast” continued for the rest of the workout…

Splits:

  • 1st set: 87, 86, 85
  • 2nd set: 82, 83, 82
  • 3rd set: 82, 82, 79
  • 4th set: 79, 76, 73

At least I decreased every set…

This workout included a lot more rest than I’ve had in awhile, and I felt good throughout the entire workout because of it.  I ended up circling the track during the same time my high school team was doing mile repeats.  On my last 400, the varsity boys were about 50 meters in front of me, and I was still full of energy from holding back the rest of the workout and really wanted to catch them, so I hammered…and I caught them.  Probably not the best decision, and it left my calves burning, but mentally, it was great. 😉  All in all, it was a good workout, even if it was much faster than it should’ve been!

Sorry, coaches.  Sorry, calves.  Please forgive me.

After a 20 minute cool down (total = 9 miles) and a couple of balance circuits, I refueled with plain Greek yogurt, melted frozen raspberries, and chia seeds.

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Yes, those are my workout instructions on my hand.  No, I did not follow them.

Followed by a lovely dinner of 2 bowls of homemade lentil soup, as well as toasted French bread with olive oil.

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The other night, my brother made cinnamon roll waffles… Just stick the Pillsbury dough in a waffle maker.  Decadent cinnamon rolls in waffle form!  Amazing.

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Today, one of my college teammates drove up, and we met up for lunch before he went off to explore the DC area.  It was great catching up with him after not being at college for a month!  I worked my way through 4 huge pieces of the same pizza from a couple weeks ago to fuel up for my super difficult cross train. 😉  Only did 50 minutes of stationary biking (60 on my schedule but only had time for 50) to give my calves and the rest of my body a bit of a break as I work through this high mileage week.  I completely failed at the post-cross train stretching, though.

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When you have to cover the numbers display with a sweatshirt so you don’t look at it every 5 seconds…

Gorgeous sunset after stationary biking.

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Dinner was once again incredible thanks to my mother.   Roasted pork loin with barbecue sauce, sweet potato, green beans, and a butternut squash/swiss chard/Gruyere casserole type thing that was quite delicious.  I might post the recipe!

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Tomorrow, I have the usual Thursday maintenance run, strides, and strength work.  Just a few more days until the return to school!

Weekend Roundup

Get ready for better quality photos– I finally have my own iPhone! Now my own photos won’t be taken with a dinky iPod 4, but with an iPhone 5c.  Whoop whoop!

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Selfies on the new phone…I enjoyed the unseasonably warm weather and riding with the windows down!

This weekend was fun.   We had a fast workout on Friday afternoon; I won’t explain all the confusing logistics but basically we did a never-ending relay and everyone ended up running 3×800 with about 1:20 rest.  It was kind of a competition between three 3-person teams. My splits were: 2:35 (what!), 2:48, 2:45.  Afterwards, we did 4×150 meter strides.  The temperature reached the high 50s or low 60s, which was ridiculously warm after two months of 20 and below.  We optimistically ran in just sports bras during the strides– it was a little chilly but a great respite from the cold.

Saturday was spent going to the gym and getting my phone.   One last lifting session before states!

I was really excited for breakfast on Sunday because we had a new flavor of oatmeal!

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It was so good! I think I have a new favorite breakfast…maybe?  It’s definitely up there, but maybe not quite toast-with-almond-butter level.

Nutrition facts (one serving):

  • 160 calories
  • Fat calories: 20
  • 12 grams sugar
  • 4 grams protein
  • Ingredients: whole grain rolled oats, sugar, dehydrated apples (treated with sodium sulfite to promote color retention), cranberries, salt, natural flavor.

I was impressed with the ingredients list.  Even though sugar is numero dos (the first three ingredients listed generally make up 97% of that food), every ingredient on the list is familiar, simple, and pronounceable! Unlike some of the other Quaker flavors…

For an early lunch, I made a delicious omelet.

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One egg, two egg whites, a handful of spinach leaves, and two tablespoons of Boursin cheese later, I was fueled up for three hours of running errands.  I got two pairs of new shoes! What girl doesn’t love new shoes?

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photo 1-4We also bought lots of food, including a big (like, family-size) bag of sugar snap peas.  I think I have a problem…I’ve eaten a third of the bag already.

For dinner, I decided to experiment and make chicken breasts stuffed with spinach, goat cheese, lemon, and garlic.  Considering that my cooking was kind of a disaster (the chicken would not cook! I had to extend the cooking time and redo the oil and cut up the chicken), it tasted really good.  I learned some tricks for a successful stuffed chicken breast next time.

All in all, it was a satisfying weekend.  I ran in spandex yesterday!  It was great.

Yummy dinner (brussels sprouts included!!)

Is it weird that I actually enjoy eating brussels sprouts? I don’t see what’s so bad about them! (other than the fact that they may make you a little…gassy.) They’re really good for you, with low sodium, low fat, and high Vitamin C. The advantages clearly outweigh the disadvantages! So go eat some delicious Brussels sprouts 🙂

My mom cooked a delicious dinner tonight and I can’t decide if it was healthy or unhealthy. We had brussels sprouts, spinach, turkey sausage, and twice baked potatoes. Obviously the potatoes were unhealthy (although amazingly good!) but I’d like to think the brussels sprouts and the spinach made up for it. We’re not the kind of family that adds sauce or butter or other nastiness to our vegetables, so the spinach was just plain, steamed spinach. The brussels sprouts only had onions, so they were still healthy. The turkey sausage is leaner and contains more vitamins and minerals than regular sausage, but it’s still…sausage. Whatever, I’m calling it healthy-ish. 🙂

Now my thirteen-year-old, doesn’t-even-know-how-to-make-a-sandwich, brother is struggling to make cookie dough for the first time. He’s making me stay in the kitchen and walk him through every step- “Which mixer part do I use? How much sugar/butter/flour do I use? Oops, I messed up. Do the eggs go in now? How many chocolate chips?”- when he could just read the instructions on the chocolate chip bag. But I guess I can be a human computer because I’ve memorized the recipe. (guilty of a cookie dough addiction)

I’m going to try to eat healthy again tomorrow (I managed it today except for a teeny spoonful of cookie dough ice cream and now I have to resist the cookie dough-NOOO). I’ve been substituting my regular super fatty and unhealthy yet delicious Nutella for all-natural almond butter from Trader Joe’s. To put this in context, I’ll compare them below.

Nutella: 200 cal per serving, 12g fat, 2g protein, 21g sugar. First three ingredients are sugar, palm oil, and hazelnuts.

Almond butter: 190 cal per serving, 17g fat, 8g protein, 2g sugar. First three ingredients are… just kidding it only HAS TWO INGREDIENTS! dry roasted almonds and sea salt. How great is that!

While almond butter has more fat, it only has 1 gram of saturated fat, while Nutella has 4 grams. And almond butter contains way more protein and WAY less sugar (like, 19 grams less sugar per serving!!) (I’m in no way affiliated with or endorsing almond butter. Haha)

I’m a self-confessed Nutella-holic. But my resolution for right now (and hopefully the future) is to become an almond-butter-aholic and break my Nutella habit. I once finished off a Costco-sized jar of Nutella in…you guessed it…24 hours. I didn’t feel ill after that, but that’s because it was back in eighth grade when I weighed maybe 80 pounds and could eat 5,000 calories of chocolatey fat and burn it off in ten minutes and forget it ever happened. WHY CAN’T I STILL DO THAT!?

By the way, I’ve continued resisting the cookie dough by imagining how gross I’ll feel after eating it. Also the Nutella jar is sitting right in front of me and I’m resisting. Yay me!