Monday, February 20, 2017

I Know Every Mile Would Be Worth My While

It is unseasonably warm in Michigan which scares the crap out of me for the future. I won't get into that right now, but yes, I enjoyed the warmth while simultaneously holding back panic. It was a good combo!

Sunday was long run day. I had 14 miles on the schedule, but missed both of my midweek runs last week due to illness. I was afraid I wouldn't even have it in me to get double digits on Sunday, let alone the full 14 miles. Thankfully, I ran with a friend who was able to coax an extra mile out of me. I wanted to quit at 12, but made it to 13.
Afterward, I realized I just ran a half marathon. As part a training run.

Who does that?!?!

All in all, I would say a pretty active day for me.
One of these days I'm going to do a Weekend Warrior challenge on Fitbit and just destroy some folks!

And now to keep myself from eating all the things!!

Hope you had a great weekend!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

And Our Hearts They Beat As One, No More Love on the Run

My weekend was a good one, mostly because I sought solace in retail therapy. I ended up buying a lot of stuff--stuff I needed--but still, stuff which always makes me nervous. I don't know what it is, do I somehow think I don't deserve to spend money on me? Sidetrack, sorry.

One of the important things I purchased were these puppies:
Now I am a Saucony woman. I have worn them for years. I went to Rundetroit because I had gift certificates and heard great things about them. Everything I heard was true. I had the owners undivided attention for at least a half hour. He had me try on one of each shoe when deciding between two. He watched me run and talked about my form. The Saucony I wore were for overpronating and he said that he didn't notice it, nor were my other shoes worn out, and suggested a neutral shoe. Which is how I ended up with the Brooks.

I love them. Aren't they pretty? If you live in the area, I highly recommend the store. They do a group run every Saturday at 8AM, and someday I might work me nerve up to join them.

He said the shoe would be find to break in with any distance run, so I woke up early Sunday morning and joined my friend for a 10.5 mile long run.

The shoes felt great!

I met a friend at the metropark at 7AM and the parking lot was empty, except for one other car. By the time we were done, it was this full. Most of those cars belong to runners or walkers. How cool is that?

I felt good after the run, good enough to smile for a selfie.
That's a frozen lake behind me. And a telephone pole in my head.
I'm glad I ran on Sunday, the weather was perfect, low 30's. I mean that's not really perfect, but it was great for the run and at no time was I freezing my butt off.

Got home and prepped for a Super Bowl party. I will not speak of the Super Bowl because I was in the ANYONE BUT THE CHEATING PATRIOTS fandom.

This week I've conquered my training runs AND did a bit of cross training. Last night I pulled out my stair stepper, dusted it off, and spend 20 minutes doing a little bit of hill training.
As I work my way up to the longer distances, I still feel pretty good about this. I keep double checking the marathon cut off time. It is a 16 minute per mile pace cut off. I just did my 10.5 with an average 13:45 per mile pace and felt good. We'll see how that goes as I add miles.  So far so good on the training! I can do this!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Zoom Lens Feelings Just Won't Disappear

I like to call this one:

A Month in Pictures

In January I ran 40 miles. I aimed for 50, but between two vacations, and the crap weather the 40 will just have to be enough.

Good news, I only missed two training runs!

J and I went to Chicago for our official anniversary celebration. A few months ago I was able to snag tickets to Hamilton. Trust me when I tell you this, it was worth every single penny. If it goes on tour near you GO SEE IT!

You can actually order a drink called the Hamilton. And they come in nifty cups you can keep!

We had fantastic seats and even now if I close my eyes I can picture the show!

We got in to Chicago on a Friday evening, did some exploring Saturday morning, then saw the show. I know I literally just said it but GO SEE HAMILTON!.

Then we were home, and I ran and made healthy food. ZOODLES FOR THE WIN!

#headlamp selfie
 And before we knew it, it was on to our second vacation of the month. Not sure if we should have taken all of our time so early in the year.

My best friend lives in Florida so we took a family trip down to the Tampa Bay area and had a blast. Even J, who had no desire to "sit on the beach all day" had fun.

We went to Clearwater Aquarium one day. It's much more an animal hospital than an aquarium, but the boys loved it. Especially the part where they got to pet stingrays (stinger removed).
We came back to that part four or five times. The bathrooms were near it so anytime we went to the bathroom, we had to stop for a quick pet. It was really cool. According to A., stingrays feel like wet lemons.

I got two runs in, which were great. The first one got interrupted by a sudden downpour.
The second one, was lovely the entire time. I had to take a picture because FLOWERS IN JANUARY just made my day. Not to mention, I also wore SHORTS on my run!
I'm glad I was able to run because my best friend is a pastry chef. You know what that means, right?
She brought desserts to our hotel every night. Thankfully, J ate most of them. I had little tastes, but he took one for the team and finished them all off.

We had one day of terrible winds and bad weather, but even that couldn't keep our spirits down.
The highlight of the trip, aside from all the best friend time I got, was going to the Manatee Viewing Center in Apollo Beach. It's free and if you are in the area I highly recommend it. They also have a stingray petting pool. The first time we went, we could see a bunch off in the distance, then when we went down the pier part, we saw one up close.
Seriously, the majestic sea cow is my frickin' spirit animal! They are just so awesome.

On our last full day there, L took the day off and we all hung out. We went to see the manatees again. It was a cooler day, and usually the colder it is the more manatees show up (the center is on Tampa Electric property and the reason the manatees go there is because of an outtake water thing the shoots out warm water). Unfortunately, there just weren't that many there. We went to a little nature preserve to eat our picnic lunch. It wasn't much, but we followed a trail that led us to a little bay. The boys loved it, they played in the sand and water and got completely drenched. We saw some people fishing and suddenly, I saw the tell tale sign of a manatee (a swirl in the water) and a head popped up. Then more and more kept coming and frolicking and it was THE BEST! Of course the boys, all caught up in their sand, they didn't even notice. And now for your manatee overload photos of the day.
The picture doesn't do justice to just how close they were.

Popping up to breathe. The boys thought it sounded like J snoring.

What manatees? We've got mucky sand to play with and enjoy!

The little bumps are about six or seven of them just rolling over each other
It was a great way to end our trip, that's for sure. We came back to cold and snow in Michigan but when have I let that keep me down?!?

Now it's February. I have my new training calendar all set to go.
I've got some long runs planned, hopefully with some friends to keep me company. I am going to kick butt at my eating and work outs. I'm cross training with a fun spin class that beats the crap out of me.

As of today I have 95 days until my marathon. Let's do this!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

It's the End of the World as We Know It...And I Feel Fine

I feel like my goals for the year are always the same and yet somehow I end up at the end of the year basically the same. It kinda sucks.

I lost some weight. Woo-hoo.

I started training for my marathon in May. Woo-hoo.

I'm trying a new way of approaching food. Woo-hoo.

I know it sounds a little sarcastic, but honestly, 2016 has been one nut punch after another. Not just personally, I am sure you all read the news, you know what's going on with the world. Sometimes it just seems like it would be easier to just lay down for a while with the covers over my head and pretend life isn't happening the way it is.

But, that solves nothing.

Because I am training (successfully might I add, already on week 3) for a marathon I am going to once again attempt my running goal of 1000 miles next year. I get close, or I do really well in January and then I slag off. Not this year.

I have my training plan posted at work, plus I have a planner I got at the dollar store that has all my workouts in it. I'm the kind of person who likes to put a check mark next to something when she accomplishes it. With my planner and my monthly schedule at work, I think I'll be putting in lots of check marks.

I started writing again. Finished a rough draft of one story. It has been bothering me. I walked away from it for a month, then was inspired to come back to it. I think I have figured out my issue with it, I want it to be more romantic than my characters want it to be. Which sounds dumb coming from a woman who wants to write romance novels. But, this one needs something else. I'll continue to work with it until it is right. There are other stories in my head that need to come out. I'll work on those in 2017, as well.
Notebook from my awesome friend to write down story ideas. And an idea. Is it just me or is there a serious lack of romances about women in their thirties? They are all either ingenues, or in their twenties just discovering the world.
Is this a wrap-up post? Not exactly. But, it's where I am right now. Hope you have a fantastic 2017!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

The Lights are Misty in the River

Morning foggy views are the best.
Two morning runs this week AND one evening run. Not too shabby. My legs are happy like, oh hey, we remember this. Running is fun!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

I Was Working in My Lab Late One Night

I wandered around my house most of yesterday evening, picking up pieces of Halloween candy, putting them back down. Looking at the carbs in my cereal. Putting it back. I wasn't hungry. I had a super filling dinner of homemade turkey stroganoff with zucchini noodles. But, my mind wouldn't let it go.

After the boys were asleep and Hubs was home I decided to hit my home gym. I haven't run in a while because of a nagging hip issue. But, with my mind all jumbled and the giant bag o' Halloween candy in the house, I NEEDED to do something. I ran a mile on the treadmill. Funny thing, my treadmill is stuck on an incline right now. I'm guessing it's about a three or four, but not sure. Anyway, it means I am running uphill so I struggled. It was a brutal run and a brutal mile, but I stuck it out. then I kept walking until I hit thirty minutes of activity. After that it was weights. I know my body is adjusting to lower carbs, I can tell from the way it felt to workout. Good news, the weights felt GOOD. I was afraid I would feel shaky.

When I was done with my workout it was back up to my kitchen and Temptation Island. Again, I pondered the candy but there really wasn't anything calling my name. I brushed my teeth, read a little bit, and went to bed. Well done, me.

I've decided to make my weigh-in days Monday. I have a tendency to use the weekends as an excuse to slack off and I don't want to do that. I weighed in on Monday and was already down a couple of pounds. This morning as I passed the scale in my bedroom I hopped on. And I am down another 1.5 pounds.

Do I think my weight will continue to drop as quickly as it has once my body figures shit out? Nope. But I am going to enjoy it while it lasts!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Sugar, Awww Honey, Honey

I have learned, the hard way, that I have what some may call, a bit of a sugar/carb thing. As in, I love them. I love them soooooo much. I want to make out with them. I want to draw little hearts with my initials plus SPAGHETTI or FRENCH BREAD.

You see where I'm going here?

I always do better with dieting, eating, and working out in the fall. There's less going on, it's cooler so running outside is much more enjoyable. So I've come up with a November challenge for myself. I'm going to go low carb/higher fat and protein. I started prior to November 1st because I wanted to be in my zone by the time the 1st rolled around.

Good news, when I weighed myself to get my starting weight for the month I am already down almost four pounds. And that's without adding in any exercise. Funny thing, cutting carbs = waaay less energy for me. I know it's my body adjusting to burning different forms of fuel, etc. It still sucks. Needless to say, I have had zero energy or willpower to do anything more physical than march around my house to get my 10,000 steps in.

As I've worked my way through the "carb flu" I feel more and more like myself and like working out. It also hasn't helped I got hit with this wicked cold going around. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel with that one, as well.

Alright, lower carbs here I come!

If you're a lower carb eater naturally, or are doing the same thing, please feel free to share some yummy recipes. I have made a few which have been good, but am always open for more suggestions. Oh yeah, and welcome to the 2010's, Meg, I tried zucchini noodles for the first time (hello spiralizer) and absolutely loved them. I sauteed them with a little bit of butter before adding my sauce over them and they had the texture of REAL PASTA. I am for it!!