Monday, September 30, 2013

Marathon Monday #9

So, apparently, I'm incapable of having two fantastic weeks of training in a row.

Last week, I missed a day of running + I failed to incorporate any strength, yoga, or cross training into my week.

Here's how it played out.

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 9/2322 w/ Sallie
Tue, 9/245
Thu, 9/265
Fri, 9/27REST
Sat, 9/28169
Sun, 9/29REST

Certainly not a complete disaster, like two weeks ago, but definitely some room for improvement.

I shouldn't blame the weather, but it got chilly here much earlier than last fall, and the cool morning air did not help my motivation at all.

It was a real struggle to get out the door on Thursday.

I eventually did buck up and go for my run. The first mile was very slow, but I did mange to throw in some speed work. Yay!!

Saturday's long run was not so good. I don't know what possessed me to consider doing 16 miles on a dirt trail through the mountains. I made it 3 before turning around. Six total on the trail. I tried to continue running on the streets to get up to my 16 miles, but after 3 more miles, I was simply DONE!

Plus those initial 6 were much slower than I needed them to be, so I was starting to get short on time.

I spent Saturday evening at Bite of Las Vegas - a food and music festival. I was volunteering with the Firefighters of Southern Nevada, serving beer and collecting tips for the Burn Foundation.

It was so much fun! I was reminded of how much fun bartending can be, but also how much work it is. I was running around like crazy, and I'm definitely feeling it today.

I'm also definitely looking forward to doing it again next year!

Up this week? Getting back on track. Hopefully, I'll bike to work 3x this week and incorporate some strength training.

How were your workouts last week?
How do you deal with cutting a long run short?

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Sunday, September 29, 2013

What's for Dinner? Week of 9/29

It's been a couple weeks with no meal planning. Some weeks I just try to wing it - some successfully, some not so much.

I've got a few items in my fridge that are on their last legs, so meal planning is a must to reduce as much food waste as possible.

menu planning

Here's what I've got planned for this week.

Sunday - Black Bean Lettuce Wraps

I've got some Butter Lettuce in my fridge that has a Use By day of 10/1. This morning, I had some Easy Breakfast Lettuce Wraps, but there is still nearly the whole head.

Monday - Bean 'n Mushroom Enchiladas
I've also got some mushrooms that need to be used. These enchiladas are always a big hit.

Tuesday - Leftovers

Wednesday - Salsa Rice and Red Beans

Thursday - Homemade Pizza

Friday - Leftovers

Saturday - TBD

To make this week a success, there are a few things I'll need to prep today.

  • Make the pizza dough and freeze it until Thursday morning.
  • Cook red beans. All I have are dried beans, and I need to get them cooked to use soon or else Wed will come and go without any dinner.

What are you eating this week?

Friday, September 27, 2013

Helloooo Weekend!

Ok. So, it's not technically the weekend yet, but it's ALMOST HERE!!

And I'm super excited!!

Tomorrow morning, I'm joining a local running group for a long run. Technically it's a trail, so I'm a little nervous, but it will be fun to not have to run 16 miles completely solo. Wish me luck!

If that weren't exciting enough, I'm also volunteering at Bite of Las Vegas.

This should be super fun! So many great bands - Walk off the Earth, Plain White T's, Goo Goo Dolls, One Republic, Matt Nathanson, and more.

I've never gone to this event before, but with the great bands and great food, how can it be anything other than great fun?!

Of course, I'll be a little outside of my comfort zone, since I don't know anyone else volunteering. I'm hoping to make some new friends here in Vegas.

I'll be working in the beer tent with the Burn Foundation, so if you're in Vegas and going to Bite of Las Vegas, stop by and say hello!

I'm volunteering for the 4-10pm shift. I hope I survive after running 16 miles in the morning!

Good thing I don't have any plans for Sunday. I imagine it will be a LAZY day after such a full Saturday.

What are your plans for the weekend?

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Running with Sallie

Running in Vegas is not the most conducive to running with Sallie. There are several months when it's simply too hot for her. And her little tootsies.

But she LOVES it!

running, sallie

I took her on my 2-miler on last week. It had been her first run in months! She did a great job, and I must of lit the running fire in her. Not that she ever really lost it. :)

Later in the week, as I was getting ready to head out for my 7-miler, Sallie heard me putting on my running shorts from the other end of our apartment, and came running in the room with that happy take-me-running-with-you smile on her face. Sadly, 7 miles is simply too far for her to run.

She's just a little thing after all.

I took her out with me again last Friday for 3 miles. She was more than happy to run with me.

I love the happy smile she gives me throughout the run when she's a little ahead of me, and she turns her little head to look back at me. It can't help but make me smile, too.

running, sallie

And here are a couple cute stories from last Friday's run...

Sometimes, it hard to find grassy areas in Vegas, and Sallie LOVES to play in the grass. The LVH has a nice long patch of green, and even though we were 2 miles in, and Sallie was already pretty tired, she still ran like a crazy dog in grass. I don't know where she found the energy, but it was terribly cute.

And the cutest story...

As we were running by the Convention Center, there were some men in a golf cart. We all stopped at the same stoplight, and to Sallie's little doggie eyes, the golf cart must have looked like a mail truck. She's got a thing for the mailman - always expecting a treat from him. And she was acting the same way with the guys in the golf cart.

She pulled out her cutest begging tricks. Standing on her back legs, etc.

When the Walk sign came on, I let the cart go a little ahead of us, and she ran after it as fast as her little legs would go. On the other side of the street, the cart went into the parking lot, and we stayed on the sidewalk.

There's a little tiny wall between the sidewalk and the parking lot, and she paused to stand and gaze over the wall as the cart drove further away.

She seemed so sad to have been denied treats by the random men on the golf cart. Funny girl.

Later that day, she went to the vet. She's a couple pounds overweight, so she'll definitely be running with me every Monday for the rest of marathon training, and then hopefully a few times a week after the marathon is over.

She's definitely one of my favorite running partners. :)

Running really wipes Sallie out.

Sallie, running, tired

Do you ever run with a dog?

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Marathon Monday #8

I've made a decision!

No worries. I'm not dropping out of the race, but I am changing my goals. When I started training, I mentioned I wanted to set a pace goal of 10:00 min/miles for the race, with an overall time of sub-4:30.

I knew I probably shouldn't make that goal, since it's my first marathon in 10 years, but I threw it out there.

And now I'm taking it back. I've decided it's just too much pressure. The majority of my runs lately have been closer to the 11:00 min/mi pace.

I don't want to spend the rest of my training beating myself up for not keeping that goal pace.

I want to ENJOY the marathon, and not feel bad for stopping when I need to. It's supposed to be a really beautiful course, and I want to feel good about stopping for an occasional picture.

So, I've decided I'm just going to run for the love of running.

No time. No pressure. Just running.

Last week was a fabulous week of training.

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 9/922 w/ Sallie
Tue, 9/104
Wed, 9/11RESTStrength Training
Cardio, Abs, Arms
Thu, 9/127
Fri, 9/133
Sat, 9/1414REST
Sun, 9/15REST

I've long since wanted to make my mid-week rest days as active rest days. I know that core and strength training are extremely important when training for a marathon, so this week, I was determined to incorporate some into my workouts.

Instead of resting on Wed, I did some strength training.

This totally kicked my ass. Literally. I could barely walk the next day from the squat variations. Made for an interesting 7 miler Thursday morning.

I did more strength training on Friday, but focused only on abs and arms. My lower body just wasn't ready. :)

Lots of Saturday morning errands prevented me from running on Saturday. That, and I really didn't eat dinner Friday night.

It's all good since I ran Sunday instead. And it was a fantastic run! Whoo hoo!!

Up this week? I'm dropping down to running 4x each week. I'm hoping to start strength training on Mon, Wed, and Fri with the extra day off. You can view my training plan here. Since I'm dropping my Pace runs, I've modified my plan to include Hills on Tuesdays and Speed Work on Thursdays - instead of alternating those from week to week on Tuesdays.

Have you ever changed up your running goals mid-training plan?

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Marathon Monday #7

Last week was a big ole flipping bust. :(

When Wednesday rolled around, I hadn't run at all, so I decided to scrap the entire week - which, thinking back, really doesn't make any sense! I mean, technically, I'd only missed ONE day.

Instead of choosing to run in the mornings, I chose to stay up late and watch too much TV. I chose not to bike or workout.

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 9/9REST15min Yoga
Tue, 9/104
Wed, 9/11REST--
Thu, 9/127
Fri, 9/134
Sat, 9/1412
Sun, 9/15REST

Oh, yeah. It was a bad week.

I figure it happens at least once in every training cycle, right?

Well, I woke up this morning. I didn't want to run. I wanted to stay in bed just a bit longer, but I DIDN'T! I knew I need to get up and get out there. I knew I needed to set myself up for SUCCESS!

So, I leashed up my girl and headed out for 2 miles. Whoo hoo. :)

Up this week? This is my last week of running 5 days/week. I hope to make the most of it.

How do you get back on track after completely failing a week?

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Pin It Party!

Ugh. It's been one of those crappy weeks. Second in a row, actually. I've been staying up too late. Not eating great. Not exercising. Sleeping in, but waking with a headache.

Overall feeling pretty lazy. And crabby.

And not very motivated to post to my blog, but when I saw Lindsay, from the Lean Green Bean, was hosting a Pin It Party, I simply couldn't resist.

What's a Pin It Party? Simple. I'm going to share 5 posts with you right here that I think would be perfect to share on Pinterest. You can pin the ones you like, and then head on over to The Pin It Party 3 and check out what everyone else is pinning as well.

Happy pinning!!

Last Sept I designed a 3-day workout. Day one focuses on Arms, then abs, then legs on day 3. If you try it, let me know what you think!

workout, arms, abs, legs

What's the difference between being Healthy and being Non-Sick?

healthy living

Now that school is back in full swing (well, not for me), here are a few tips for staying healthy while in college - though most could also be applied to outside of college as well. :)

healthy living, student, college

A quick look at how I like to end my runs.

stretching, post-run, running

And lastly, here's a little motivational pic I created + some tips for beginning runners.

running, fun, motivation

That was fun!

Happy Thursday, everyone!!!

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Monday, September 9, 2013

Marathon Monday #6

It's a brand new week! I hope it flies by, because, sadly, I'm already ready for the weekend. Oops!

Week 5 of training went very well!

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 9/2REST65 min Yoga
Tue, 9/34
Wed, 9/4RESTbiked to work
Thu, 9/56
biked from work
Fri, 9/63
Sat, 9/71212
Sun, 9/82

I started the week out with some yoga, which left me quite sore for the next couple of days. I still managed to get in some speed work on Tuesday. I did an HIIT workout on the treadmill that was quite challenging

Wednesday was somewhat of an active rest day because I biked into work. The skies were looking very threatening at the end of the work day, so Jeff picked me up. Genie isn't big enough for my bike, so Lily spent the night inside at my desk. Jeff dropped me off at work Thursday morning, so I could bike home after work.

I ended up working 45 minutes late on Thursday. While biking home, I nearly talked myself out of going for my run. I had skipped it in the morning, and thought it would be okay to skip it at night, too, right?! I mean it was already 6:30 by the time I got home. My legs were already tired from biking. [insert additional excuses here.]

In the end, I decided to man up and just get out there quickly. Before I changed my mind. I didn't even hesitate, but changed into my running clothes as soon as I hung up my bike. I kissed Jeff, convinced him to make dinner while I ran, and then headed out the door.

It turned out to be quite a fun run! Sunset happened about halfway into my run, and there were portions that were pitch black, and I could barely see the ground. I'll have to remember my reflective vest next time I run after work. For sure.

It was supposed to be a pace run, and I did better than I expected! I went a bit slower after dark, but managed an overall pace of 10:08. I'll definitely take that!

Despite my late run on Thurs, I still woke up early enough Friday for a quick 3 miles. Well, they didn't turn out to be so quick, but at least I got them done. :)

Saturday's 12 were kind slow as well. I tried doing 7/3 splits. When I was training for my first 2 marathons I did 10-and-1 splits, and those were ok. This training cycle, I've tried 3-and-1s and now 7-and-3s. I don't think either of those are for me. I end up walking too slowly and taking too long to run again. My overall pace really suffers. I think I'll try 10-and-1s again to see how those will work this time around.

Other than slow, the 12 miles weren't bad. I had a few tummy issues, but nothing too bad. The worst was the number of stop lights. Ugh! I ran a route I'd never really run before, and the stoplights were killing me!

Up this week? Hills tomorrow, and I think I've decided on a great hill to try. Yay! 12 miles again on Saturday, and I'm hoping to do it at goal pace. I'm thinking I need to find an actual trail for this, so I don't have to deal with the stoplights.

Do you train with run/walk intervals? If so, what's your interval of choice?
How was your running last week?

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Sunday, September 8, 2013

What's for Dinner? Week of 9/8

Last week wasn't too successful in the whole eating dinner department. Monday night we were stuck at the dealership until past my bedtime. I did make soup on Tuesday - even though it didn't really turn out to be stormy. Wed-Fri there were some late nights at work, plus an evening run Thursday night.

I was just too exhausted didn't feel like making dinner most nights that we ended up just snacking or whatever.


I did convince Jeff to make dinner when I was out running Thursday night, so that was good. :)

menu planning

Since I skipped most of my meals last week, this week's plan is going to look a bit familiar. :)

Sunday - Homemade pizza
The pizza dough is rising as I type this, so hopefully the pizzas will actually get made.

Monday - Baked ziti
Ok. So, maybe I don't actually have any ziti, so it will be baked whatever pasta I have on hand. lol.

Tuesday - Leftovers

Wednesday - Beans/Rice Dip

Thursday - Burritos
Kind of like leftovers of the dip on Wednesday - except in a tortilla.

Friday - Leftovers

Saturday  - TBD

What are you eating this week?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Meet Genie!

Scion iQ

Isn't she the cutest little thing?

Jeff and I spent Labor Day at the car dealership to see what kind of a deal we could get on a new car. 6 hours later, we drove home with Genie.

Liberty is a gas guzzler with some serious rattling going on, and a bit scary to drive. She sounds like she's about to die, and nobody wants to be driving down the road when your car goes kaput!

So, we wanted to get a car with a much better MPG. We love SCION, so we were super excited about the iQ.

We'd decided on a 2013 Black Currant and had sat down to start the paperwork. While I sat there, Jeff popped back outside, and walked over to a far corner of the lot where we'd looked at a few others. He wanted one with a spoiler, and none of the ones we'd looked at yet had one, but on his way back inside, he spotted this little gem in the Pre-owned, Price Reduced section.

Blizzard Pearl was the one for us. I mean, how fitting, considering our MN history, right?

Not only is she a pretty pearly white color, and has a spoiler, but she was $3400 cheaper and only had 24,000 miles on her. Sweet!!

Genie is perfect for us!

Like all Scions, she's deceptively much bigger on the inside than she appears.

Scion iQ

Even Jeff can fit in the back comfortably! Plus they left plenty of space in the center for a foot. Not sure how comfortably 4 people would fit in the car, but 3 is great!

Since we don't often have any passengers, there is plenty of cargo space for groceries and whatnot, if we put the back seats down. There's even a nice little cubby - perfect for a small bottle jack and such.

Scion iQ

She's super fun to drive, too! A LOT different from Liberty, because she's tiny and much lower to the ground.  But she's got A/C and a radio, too!! So luxurious. :)

I already mentioned the great MPG. It boasts 36 city and 37 hwy. How are these numbers so close for city and highway? Because it's got a CVT transmission, which most hybrids use. Some say it's noisier than a regular transmission, but Genie is super quiet compared to what I'm used to.

Not only does she have great MPG, and the perfect amount of space for us, she's also pretty damn safe. With something like 11 airbags, and a Star™ Safety System including things like Smart Stop Technology™, Vehicle Stability Control, and Brake Assist, I can cruise around town with complete peace of mind.

I definitely feel safe and secure driving Genie.

Plus, did I mention how tiny and cute she was?

Scion iQ

Ok. Enough about my new car. How about the winners of the Designer Whey giveaway?

Katie, Sarah H, Jenny, Rachel, Christy, and Sarah J, email me ASAP with you shipping address, and I'll get your protein powder out to you soon.

How long did it take when you purchased your last car?

Monday, September 2, 2013

Marathon Monday #5

Happy Labor Day!! Hope you're all enjoying the last day of summer. I know, I know. Summer's not technically over yet, but Labor Day sure seems like the start of fall.

Even though the high today is still 99. :)

We've got no big plans for today. I already got some yoga in, but now it's time to simply enjoy the day off from work.

And share with you my training from this past week.

Week 4 of training is in the bag!

I had to make a couple of adjustments, but I'm still happy with how it's going. :)

The PlanThe Reality
Mon, 8/26REST2
Tue, 8/273
Thu, 8/296
Fri, 8/304
Sat, 8/3110
Sun, 9/12

Since I had skipped my run last Sunday, I didn't want to have two rest days in a row, plus I was itching to run Monday morning, that I started the week off with 2 miles. :)

I had the best stairs run on Tuesday, in place of hills, and I was really feeling it the next morning - and Thursday, too. Loved it!!

Wednesday's rest day was nice, and it was the only day I biked to work last week, so it was kind of an active rest day. :)

Thursday's 6 miles were super fun, but about two miles in I rolled my ankle.

Possibly not the smartest idea to keep on moving, but I just didn't want to stop! I iced it, rubbed Biofreeze on it, and took Friday and Saturday as rest days to let it heal. It was feeling good enough that I was able to get in 10 miles yesterday.

Up next week? SPEED WORK!! I've been having a LOT of difficulty maintaining anywhere near a 10:00min/mi pace lately - even on my shorter runs, which used to easily be sub-10:00. I'm hoping that the addition of speed work will help.

What are you doing for Labor Day?

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Sunday, September 1, 2013

What's for Dinner? Week of 9/1

I can't believe it's already Sept! Wasn't it just the beginning of August???

Man, time just goes by WAY too fast when you're an adult. Remember, when you were younger, and you just wanted to get to that next stage? Now, it's like, LIFE JUST SLOW DOWN A LITTLE!!

And, I don't even have kids, which I've heard just makes this all the worse. :)

Nothing like starting the post off on a tangent. lol.

menu planning

Since it's Sept, I felt like gravitating a bit more toward fall-like foods for this week's menu plan - even though it's still HOT and temperature-wise, it probably won't really feel like fall here in Vegas for at least another month or so.

I'm still gonna add some soup to the menu this week. I'm planning it for a day that's supposed to be stormy. Do you ever look at the weather forecast when doing your menu planning? Please tell me I'm not the only one. :)

Sunday - Enchiladas

Monday - Homemade pizza
This recipe comes from Mommy Run Fast. Her pizzas look so delicious! Despite not having a pizza stone or peel, I hope mine turned out delicious, too.

Tuesday - Magical Fruit Soup
Yes, I'm going to try a recipe from that Coolio cookbook I got for my birthday. I don't know why it's called Magical Fruit, as there isn't any fruit in it at all, but it did sound delicious. Coolio's cookbook is quite hilarious (but probably not appropriate for children); I should do a cookbook review of it sometime.

Wednesday - Leftovers

Thursday - Baked ziti

Friday - Leftovers

Saturday  - TBD

After rolling my ankle on Thursday morning's run, I postponed my 10-miler this weekend until today. Perfect timing to get in the first month of the Fall 5 or 10 Mile virtual race series. It's 82°F with 60% humidity out there today, so I'm going to hit up the treadmill - with Netflix to keep me company.

What are you eating this week?