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!