Sunday, July 31, 2011

Ultra Mini Break Recap

Exercise: One 3 mile run and the rest were elliptical and weight sessions

Life's been a little nuts around here. Mostly due to our whirlwind trip to Las Vegas. We had planned to rest and relax for 4 days in the hot sun and that turned into less than 30 hours. Music man got a call the 2nd day we were in Vegas and we found out we had to get home immediately. Luckily Little Man was having a hard time getting to sleep so we kept him up until we got in the car and he slept the whole trip. Thank the Lord.

Music Man drove and I tried to stay up the whole drive to keep him company but I kept passing out for short periods. We got home safely but Friday and Saturday were a blur from exhaustion. But I got in my workouts every day. I even got a run in on Thursday in Las Vegas. And man was it hot, 85 degrees when I started running right before 7am so I decided a 5k would suffice. It ended up slower than I'd like but I finished and was back before the real melting heat. I'm finally starting to feel normal today so I got another decent run in.

Even though we were in Vegas for such a short time we did get to relax a bit and do some typical Vegas things while the grandparents babysat Little Man. We saw Horrible Bosses and it was pretty darn funny. I would even go as far to say I loved it, but then again, I have horrible taste in movies. We also got to have lunch out. The theatre is at a casino so we figured we'd just eat there but none of the little restaurants were open yet, it was before 11. The one place open was the buffet which isn't really our style, especially unplanned. But we found out for registering with the casino we got a huge reduction on the price pf the buffet so we ended up paying 10 bucks total for our meal, including tip. Umm, that's a hell of a lot cheaper than fast food even, how could we resist?

Music Man and I haven't eaten at a buffet in ages so all the excess was a little daunting. I know I can't eat that much now without feeling terrible. I'm used to getting 3 or 4 plates of food which just seems disgusting. We each got a plate of random unhealthy foods and took only a few bites before deciding to get salads. but the salad bar was nothing more than some wilted lettuce, under ripe tomatoes and dry cucumbers. There was also some jello and ambrosia salads, clearly catering to the AARP eligible crowd. We finally decided to skip the salad and just have dessert. Yay for mini cheesecakes and a frozen yogurt bar! Lunch ended up being heavenly.

The trip was way too short but definitely worthwhile. We did get some time to relax and we got to see the family but Little Man definitely didn't get enough time with the grandparents, heck, we didn't even have time to take pictures. But it's already August so the holidays will zoom here and we'll get to spend time with them soon enough.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Mini Break

Exercise: I ran Friday-Sunday (so wonderful to run again!) and today did 60 mins elliptical and 20 mins weights

Music Man and I are taking Little Man to Vegas this week to see his grandparents. It will be great to see the family but it's just nice to get out of town and Music Man will get a much needed break. I'm always a little worried about traveling with Little Man, he tends to get a little antsy when strapped in his car seat for more than an hour.

I'm also worried about the heat. It's hot out here in the valley but Vegas is crazy hot and dry to boot. I'd really like to get a run or two in while I'm there but I find myself daunted by starting a run when the lowest temperature is 80. I plan to power through it just by doing a few short easy runs.

I've been thinking a lot about my running, or lack there of. I got to run Friday and Little Man got to hang with some other littles thanks to a wonderful friend of mine. I only ran 2 miles but realized that 2 miles is enough, heck, 1 mile is enough. But I love to do it so I'll settle for a quality run as opposed to a quantity run any day. So that leads me to my new plan of attack.

Just because I can't get in a long run doesn't mean I can't run at all. So I'm running when I can fit it in. On Saturday Little Man woke up and I immediately loaded him in the jogging stroller with a cup of milk and some toast and did a quick 4 mile run. It took 35 minutes and he enjoyed breakfast on the ride and all the scenery. So we repeated it on Sunday and it went great again. I'm hoping to do that a few times a week(praying.)

This plan is much less stress and I still get to run. Woo hoo! my next race is a 5k in about a month so the short runs should gear me up for that. Perfect prep. Now I just need to get in a few long runs to see if I can get my butt to the Bulldog.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Sometimes You Need to Wash it Down with a Bottle of Wine

Exercise: 60 mins elliptical 10 minutes strength

Wanna know how you can tell this isn't a "healthy living" blog? Because I will admit that I contemplated having carrots and a container of hummus for dinner and washing it down with a bottle of wine because Music Man is, well, working on music. I ate the carrots and 1/2 the hummus and passed on the bottle of wine because I get to run tomorrow!!! Just a quick 2-3 miles, but a run none the less, so better to not be hung over. A glass or 2 of wine won't hurt though. Right? ;)

I was at a MOMS club meeting this morning at an indoor play area at the mall and Little Man was running wild. He kept trying to escape from the area, climbing things way too high for a 14 month old to climb and just causing general chaos. He was running me ragged chasing him everywhere every few seconds. One of the mothers mentioned that that must be how I stay skinny. Ha! Totally true. Toddlers are nuts. I'm beginning to think a leash is a good option.

I do work out every day and eat fairly well to keep the weight off but I stay active throughout the day. Little man keeps me on my toes. I'm always running after him, taking him and the dogs on walks, biking with him to the park and running around with him in the backyard. So that definitely helps with my weight.

But speaking of weight, I'm trying to figure out what the right weight for me is. I've never been this weight before. I am continuing to lose at a very slow rate so I'm thinking I must be close to my ideal weight. But I'd like to lose more.

It's funny, because at 230 pounds I thought if I could just get to 175 I would be happy. Even though I would still be considered overweight a 55 pound weight loss seemed perfect to me. But I got to 175 and figured I should get into my healthy weight range. So I'm there now. I'm below my latest goal of 155 pounds and a good bit below the heavy end of my healthy weight range. But I feel like I need to lose more.

I have this tummy issue. I know you can't lose fat in one place. Annoying. So I feel like I need to continue to lose weight until that issue is resolved. But what if it never is? I was obese and then pregnant and obese so I stretched out that area possibly to the point of no return. Is it realistic for me to tighten that saggy tummy. I don't think it's been flat since I was 13 and everything was flat back then.

I wish someone could give me a magic number because I feel like I need to know it to feel that I achieved my goal. Stupid, I know. I've already achieved and surpassed my weight loss goals. But what's the conclusion? I guess I just need to keep on keepin' on and see where it takes me. And see if I can maintain that weight. It's no good getting to a weight I can't maintain because sometimes you need to eat carrots and a whole container of hummus and wash it down with a bottle of wine.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

It's in the Can

Exercise: 60 mins elliptical 20 mins strength.

This workout is starting to get a little monotonous. Especially after doing the few trail runs that were so beautiful coming back to indoor workouts just isn't as fun. I know I'm lucky to have equipment in my home and I don't want to take that for granted. Although it would be nice to have a change of scenery besides changing the channel on the tube.

Speaking of the tube, it's kinda crazy that I can almost finish a movie in the time it takes me to work out. I've tried reading but I'm way too distracted for that. So I've been streaming great stuff on Netflix and Amazon. I've watched most of Grey's Anatomy, Breaking Bad and I'm moving on to movies. Insidious was great and I watched Wrecked today and thought it was pretty interesting.

I was hoping to get back to running this week but Music Man is working with a band the next few days and will be uber busy and I don't want to chance Little Man waking him up at the crack of dawn. We'll be down in Laguna Beach for the weekend so I'm hoping to get a run in on Sunday. Maybe even climb some hills. Then we'll see how Little Man sleeps next week and maybe I can start getting in a couple of runs.

At least I DO get to work out and I've been eating pretty well. Music Man said he was excited that I've been on such a health kick; that was until I told him I was making lentil loaf for dinner. He turned up his nose a little but was willing to try it. But you guys, it was really good! Music Man ate it up!

I just wanted something hearty with good protein and carbs and it fit the bill perfectly. I cooked the lentils with some quinoa, random veggies and later added in some chia seeds. Then I threw in a few dashes of all the refrigerator condiments with an egg and 2 crumbled slices of brown rice bread. I molded it into loaf shape and slathered some ketchup on top. I don't know if this is a selling point but it tasted surprisingly like White Castle. I served it with mashed sweet potatoes and some green beans.

Little Man helped me make dessert. We had peach crumble with canned peaches. So lame, I have a ton of stone fruit in the fridge but was too lazy to pit and slice. But there's something amazing about peach crumble from can or not.

Weird question of the day. Is there a canned food you love?

Again, peaches are awesome but black beans have to be one of my fave.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Exercise: 60 mins elliptical 10 mins quick weight sesh

So it seemed like Little Man was feeling better but he was up until 9:30, late for a little guy, throwing up. It was awful for both of us. Worse for him because he's feeling bad but being covered in vomit twice in one night is no cakewalk. I was thinking he was feeling better because he finally got his appetite back, but everything got spit up. Poor little dude.

Earlier this evening I was thinking about my new plan of attack for ultra marathoning. I thought I might find a different 50k that occurred sooner than the 2012 Bulldog but I think I'll just stick with the plan of completing the Bulldog 50k next year. I think it's a good idea to have some other races under my belt first.

I'll be doing a 5k in mid August just to get my speed on. I still plan to run the Bulldog 25k at the end of August and I'd like to get a spring marathon in to have some good distance training. I'm thinking the LA Marathon would be a good race because I've completed it twice and I'm pretty sure I can pr on it, or maybe even bq!? Then I can take a month or 2 off training before I begin hardcore training for the Bulldog. So that's the plan for now. Let's hope life complies, at least somewhat.

So my running regimen has been adjusted but I've been getting in some great workouts and eating pretty well. It's weird, but the last few days I've been grossed out by animal protein. Just looking at it makes me queasy. I had a nasty run in with a putrid chicken last week. It had gone bad prior to it's expiration date and it's the most disgusting thing I've ever encountered. Worse than being vomited on twice. I can smell it just thinking about it and my stomach lurches. So I used up all the animal protein in the fridge this weekend and we'll be eating veggie based protein this week until I that experience fades from my memory.

We've been eating a lot of oatmeal for breakfast lately. I rarely used to eat it because I didn't find it satisfying, I'd be hungry mid morning. Now, with the addition of chia seeds and flax, I'm finding it very hearty and filling. I might be addicted ;)

It was super hot today so the only thing that sounded appealing for lunch was a salad. I loaded up my bowl with spinach and baby greens and added a ton of veggies and some lentils for my protein. I hadn't had lentils in a very long time so it was a treat.

Pizza is a favorite dinner around here so I made us personal pizza's with Udi's gluten free crusts, rice shreds and spinach and mushrooms. I paired the pizza with another veggie laden salad with the addition of beets and walnuts. I think I could eat beets, walnuts, goat cheese and balsamic at every meal and never tire of it.

I'm embarrassed to admit it but I had, like, 4 desserts. I have too much yummy crap in my house and couldn't control myself. Oh well, I don't workout for nuthin'

1. meringue cookie
2. a small cup of Captain Crunch in coconut milk
3. a serving of chocolate sorbet
4. dark chocolate covered vanilla caramels

And I have no excuse for this behavior, but damn if it wasn't worth it!

What do you like to indulge in?

Monday, July 18, 2011


I don't want to jinx myself but I think Little Man is feeling better. He seemed pretty chipper this afternoon after awakening from his over 3 hour nap. He obviously needed the sleep since he hasn't slept well in days...

I made a really yummy dinner for Meatless Monday; tofu "crab" cakes, FTW. I made a similar dinner around this time last year using one of Tal Ronen's recipes. This time I just used Paula Deen's crab cake recipe and substituted tofu and crumbled nori for the crab and a piece of gluten free bread for the crackers. It was very flavorful with a soft but toothsome texture inside and a nice crunch on the outside. The recipe calls for a ton of mayo and oil and I used a vegan mayo and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

(not the prettiest pic)

I served them atop a simple salad of baby greens, corn, carrots and green beans. I dressed it with Trader Joe's Greek Feta dressing that is super thick so I diluted it with some coconut milk. Surprisingly good.

Music man had also been talking about craving biscuits so I used Bob's Red Mill Baking Mix. It satisfied Music Man's craving but I thought it was a bit bitter and a little salty. They look a little like hockey pucks too. BUT, with a little butter and honey, totally tasted like a treat. By the way, I've used the baking mix for pancakes before and they were delish.

I'll sign off with a pic of Music Man giving Little Man some pointers.

Day of Unrest

Exercise: Today- 60 minutes elliptical 20 minutes strength, Yesterday- 3 miles run (9:25 pace)and 3 miles walk (16:10 Pace).

Yesterday was exhausting so there was no post. Saturday was the worst night for sleep yet, I think I got a little over 3 hours of sleep. So much suck. Little man could not get comfortable at all. He'd cough and wake himself up every 10 minutes. Awful. And we ended up at urgent care last night getting his chest x-rayed. He's fine, no pneumonia, just a little chest infection.

After having such a hard night Saturday, Sunday morning the Music Man and I woke up with a sleep deprivation hangover. Seriously felt like I had imbibed a bottle of wine the night before even though neither the Music man or I have had even a taste of booze in the last week. Speaking of which, that will change when Little man is feeling better. Mommy wants vodka. I digress, my point was that a hangover , no matter what from, deserves a hangover curing breakfast. I made HUGE breakfast burritos. Probably the equivalent to 4 eggs in each, with some potatoes, soy cheese, fakon and avocado on brown rice tortillas. So so tasty. wasn't a total cure but alongside a much needed Redbull, it definitely helped.

The little man was clearly not feeling well and was just as tired as Music man and I knew he needed an earlier nap than usual. He naps easily in the stroller so I decided I could actually get out for a run and have him nap. My plan was just to do an easy run/walk but as soon as I was out there, I just wanted to run! I burnt out pretty quickly though and began walking after 3 miles. It was a great workout considering how tired I was.

The whole day ended up being about comfort food. For dinner I was craving mac & cheese but that's not a meal unless your 5, although I have been known to eat it quite a bit when Music Man is away. I decided to pair it with meatloaf and steamed broccoli. The meatloaf was great too because I grated a whole carrot and zucchini into the mix and it made it so moist.

After dinner we high tailed it to the urgent care to get Little Man looked at. We got x rays, saw the physician twice and not only was everyone super nice but we were in and out of there faster than it takes to get a coffee at Starbuck's. Big time win for Kaiser Permanente. One of the best experiences I've had with health care. I'm slowly becoming a Kaiser fan.

When we got home we got Little Man to bed, well, for a little while, and Music Man and I collapsed on the couch with dessert. For dessert we had some Almond Dream ice cream and I some how found the time to make some oatmeal peanut butter cookies so we had those on the side.

They were super delicious, kinda healthy and super duper easy.

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

1/2 c peanut butter
1/2 t baking soda
1/4 c sugar
1/4 c brown sugar
1/4 c agave nectar
1 /2 t vanilla
1 egg
2 c rolled oats
1/4 c brown rice flour
1 T chia seeds

Preheat oven to 350. Cream the first 7 ingredients. Mix in the oats, flour and seeds. drop by T on a lightly greased sheet. bake 10-12 mins.Makes 18 cookies

Have a great week!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Up All Night

Exercise: 50 Mins elliptical and 15 Mins strength.

Today was another day I was surprised I got any workout in at all. Little man was up all night last night. ALL NIGHT! Music man only slept from 4-8. I think I slept from about 2-6:30 with a few wake ups in there. Music man definitely won the "most tired" prize. And he had to make a midnight drugstore run. And work. Not fun.

I was so exhausted the idea of working out was totally unappealing but it's the one thing I have to do every day. I know if I don't work out I'll just feel worse. I told myself all I had to do was low resistance elliptical for 30 minutes but once I got going I was in it. I did the Body-For-Life cardio training plan (twice) and even finished up with some arms and abs.

When I finished the workout it was way past my normal lunchtime so I was starving and made a huge wrap out of a brown rice tortilla with turkey, tomatoes, avocado, and a tatziki like yogurt sauce I threw together. So darn tasty. I paired it with some yummy cherries and strawberries.

Music man and I thought about ordering in dinner since we were both so tired but it's just too hard for us to order in. Music man is eating almost completely gluten free and dairy free these days. He also limits his intake of acidic foods as well as eliminating liquor, chocolate and anything spicy or flavorful. So take out is pretty limited. and we don't have many healthy take out options in our area that are also tasty.

I ended up creating a simple polenta dish with tomatoes and basil from our garden and a few other veggies I had on hand. I topped it with an herbed chicken breast that I stuffed with rice shreds and basil. Incredible!

Have a great rest of your Saturday!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Five for Friday

Exercise: 45 mins elliptical and 20 minutes strength

Happy Friday!

1. The little man is sick so I wasn't sure I'd get in any workout at all. I normally workout at 5:30 am or so and the little man was up more than a few times last night. Then at 5:30 he woke again and wanted to stay up. I got him back to sleep but he was up every 20 minutes until 6:30 when I was ready to let him get up for the day. I feel so so bad for him when he's not feeling well. I finally got in the workout during nap time and that lifted my spirits.

2. I've been following this workout plan by Carrots n' Cake. I have been doing the same strength routine for the past 3 months so having some new moves is really refreshing. Her routine took me about 15 minutes then I added 5 minutes of abs. It was a very effective workout, my shoulders and arms are already feeling the burn.

3. Here's a taste of what Music Man is spending all his time on.

4. I get to go out for a run on Sunday and I haven't run all week. I'm trying to decide if I want to go up on the trails or get a speedy run in down here on the flats. From here on out I'm going to try to get in at least 2 runs a week, that way I can do one of each.

5. My area of so Cal is such a joke right now. Carmageddon... That is all that's on the news. And all the media exposure worked because the freeways are WIDE open. So there is no news.

I had a super yummy healthy lunch of a veggie salad with avocado, veggie burger crumbles and Annie's italian dressing.

I was so exhausted by the end of the day I ended up making my fave easy go to meal of burgers and baked fries for dinner. Fairly healthy and a hit with the little man. He gets a few fries and a mini cheeseburger with rice cheese.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Totally Beachin'

Exercise: 60 mins elliptical and 30 mins strength and yoga.

I wasn't planning to workout so long today but little man slept in so I figured I better do what I can when I can. I know that some days I may only get 25 minutes so even if I don't feel like working out I have to take advantage of the time I'm allotted. And as if 90 minutes isn't enough of a workout I also took little man to the beach. Now that was a workout.

You think sunny beach in the morning= relaxing. Not a chance when you have a toddler and all the stuff that goes along with having a toddler. And it's you, alone, no husband to help with the burden so you stumble through the sand with a a huge beach umbrella, one of those blanket/bag things, a bag of toys, a huge diaper bag and said toddler stuck somewhere in amongst those things. It's like a billion pounds. Not to mention you have to run after the toddler as he steals peoples shoes and runs down the beach. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. It was perfect. And wonderful to hang with all our mommy and baby friends.

After the beach fun little man took a good nap so I was able to prep a yummy dinner of pan roasted herbed pork chops with quinoa pilaf and sauteed zucchini. It was super tasty and totally healthy. The quinoa pilaf had a ton of dried fruit, I even added some chopped prunes which proved to be a tasty addition.

All in all, a pretty great day.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Two for Tuesday

Exercise: 60 Mins elliptical and a 20 minute yoga sesh of sun salutations and warrior poses

The music man and I have been experiencing a bit of stress over the past few months. He was out of town for a month and then he returned just to begin a minor(major) kitchen remodel as well as having to start a new project immediately. I was alone for a month then having to do all my cooking by microwave and grill while chasing a toddler. Things are slowly settling down, but some of the stress still remains.

I am often overwhelmed by all the daily tasks and then there's everything else. Sometimes it's just too much and I shut down. So I've come up with a plan to pare things down. And the last few days have been much easier. It requires a tiny bit of time but is so worth the feeling of productivity. I am actually getting things done as opposed to breaking down. Good news as far as I'm concerned.

So here's the deal, I do all the daily tasks like sweeping, laundry, running after a toddler, play dates, music classes, scooping poop, etc. and then I give myself two tasks a day per area of my life. For instance, today, for home, I organized my kitchen and rehung all the art since the kitchen is finally in a state of normalcy.

For music man, I prepared 3 meals, here are 2:

and baked a gluten free apple sauce cake for him as a treat.

Little man got a trip to the park and 20 minutes of abc's and 123's puzzle time.

The dogs got 2 good walks.

As for me, I got my workout done and after the dishes were done, little man was in bed and everything was prepped for the next day I watched Weeds and painted my nails.

Everything else is gravy.


Monday, July 11, 2011


Exercise 2: 20 minutes full body strength session including squats with anterior raises, lunges with alternating bicep curls and tricep kick backs, hip abductor and adductor raises, chest flys and presses, crunches, bicycle crunch/oblique twists, reverse crunches, push ups, plank hold and Super Mans!

I got my strength session in. So happy because I wasn't feeling it. I just got little man to sleep and wanted to lay on the sofa and stream Netflix. Instead, I did my strength sesh and streamed the pilot of Lost on Netflix. Later I completely undid all my hard work by scarfing down some Twizzlers. It was so worth it though.

I abandoned gazpacho and went with a heartier vegan dish for meatless Monday. We had barbecue tofu sandwiches with vegan coleslaw and oven fries. So so tasty. I just marinated the tofu in Stubb's sauce and baked it. The coleslaw is dressed with vegan mayo, almond milk, and dashes of cider vinegar, sugar, celery seed, salt and pepper. The potato wedges are just halved then quartered and basted with a bit of olive oil, garlic, paprika, salt & pepper and baked on each side for 10 minutes. Not only was it tasty but super easy and very filling.

Surprisingly, Little man was a huge fan of the barbecued tofu.

No Pain

Daily Sweat: 45 Mins. Elliptical Intervals- I'm hoping to get in a weight session today, maybe during little man's nap.

After the arduous Saturday trail run I am surprised that I haven't been very sore. Not really at all. Just very tired. I feel like trail running takes more effort because of the uneven footing but it's so much less waring on your body. I need to figure out how to get at least one trail run in a week. Might be difficult seeing as I may only be able to run twice a week.

The weather here in the San Fernando Valley is absolutely beautiful so I'm feeling a little sad that I won't be able to take advantage of it by running outdoors. I am super lucky the Music Man bought me an elliptical before last Christmas because I do have the luxury of getting my workout done at any time. And with the weather being so beautiful little man and I will be doing a ton of bike riding to the park, library, maybe even Whole Foods.

Last night we had the yummiest dinner of filet mignon, corn on the cob and roasted beets and carrots from the csa box. I'm trying to figure out something yummy for tonight that can compete with that. It's meatless Monday, though, so it's kinda hard for tofu to compare with filet. I do have a ton of veggies ready to harvest so maybe I'll do something mediterranean or spanish with tomatoes, cucumbers and green peppers. OOOOH, maybe gazpacho!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Body and the Land

Exercise: 12.5 mile trail run- 12:00pace

Pretty much the hardest 12 mile run I've done. Yeah, it was supposed to be 15. Luckily for me I misread the map and the trail I took ended earlier than I anticipated. THANK THE LORD. At that point I was mentally done. I read this blog, Endurance isn't only Physical. Never has that statement felt so very true.

When I reached the end of the trail I had just completed a 3 mile fairly steep descent. Although running downhill is less challenging physically, the whole time I was psyching myself out thinking "3 miles down means 3 miles up." Mentally, I was already paralyzed. It was way too much for a first long trail run.

Trail running is so very different than road running. And definitely different than my usual flat routes. There are the steep hills, the sloping paths, loose and varied footing. Not to mention rattle snakes, poison oak, and all kinds of creepy crawlies. The wildlife actually doesn't bother me but my body was no match for the terrain. It was definitely a reality check.

The Bulldog 50k is not in the cards for me this year. I need a lot, and I mean A LOT, more trails under my belt before I attempt that distance. I will, however, run the Bulldog 25k. It's still 15 miles, nothing to laugh at and I'm pretty confident I have enough time to train to complete that distance.

For the next few months I'll also have to change up my training. The music man is having a very busy summer and I need to be around to support him (rather than him getting up to deal with little man at 5am after getting home from work after midnight! to support me.) The plan is to run 3 days a week as opposed to 4 and use the elliptical the remaining days. When little man's sleep schedule gets back to normal or decides to sleep a little later I'll go back to running more and hopefully start incorporating road biking into my routine.

One final note: We have an oven! So I got to make pizza again. I used Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Pizza Crust mix and it was pretty tasty, much better than I had anticipated. I topped it with all sorts of yummy stuff: spinach, mushrooms, chicken sausage and Galaxy Mozzarella Rice Shreds and the pie was perfection. Thank you Music Man for installing the new oven!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Land of Nod

I'm always a little anxious the night before a long run and have some trouble with sleep. It used to be the mileage that made my heart beat faster. These days my anxiety is caused by a teeny sleeping human that rules the roost. All this week little man has been waking up early and that means my late working husband is a very early riser on my running days. If this keeps up he may kill me and I think it might be justifiable homicide.

Send some good sleep juju for me, tired husband and little man.

Five for Friday

Exercise: 25 minutes elliptical- had planned on 35 but the little man woke up early

1. I'm getting geared up for my first 15 mile trail run tomorrow. I'm expecting it to be difficult but I am so looking forward to a change of scenery.

2. It has been such a stressful week with appliances. We haven't had an oven for close to a month and it took me 2 days and 3 visits to the same store to purchase the darn thing. But it should be in tomorrow!!! Tomorrow night I will be baking up a storm!

3. I had a pretty good morning with the little man even though he was a super grump. First we watched the last shuttle launch live. Then I took the him to the coolest park, it has a splash pad with all these awesome water features. So much fun.

4. My husband introduced me to the show Breaking Bad. Instant addiction.

5. I wanted a nf iced latte so bad today and there was not a space to be had at Starbucks. The only other place nearby was a Carl's Jr. So I got a Diet Coke with a side of fries and a burger ;)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Thirsty Thursday

Today's Exercise: 8 Mile Tempo Run - 9:52pace

For the past few days I've been doing tons of research on long distance hydration. At the race there will be plenty of aid stations with water, sports drinks, gels and food but on my solo runs I have to figure out how to keep myself properly hydrated. It's a double edged sword because dehydration reduces performance by up to 20% and over hydration can cause hyponatremia. One misstep and you're kaput! Maybe not that dramatic...

On my longer solo runs I'll be running 20-25 miles on trails. Most trails don't have water fountains or 7-11's. There are so many differing articles but from what I gather I need to drink at least 50oz on my longer runs. So what's best? A handheld bottle (or 2), a hydration belt, or a pack with a bladder.

I'm leaning towards the pack and also carrying a handheld on longer runs. My main concern is the pack chaffing my chest. And 25 miles of that would be pretty awful. I'm doing 15 miles Saturday and am planning an out and back route that has a water fountain at 3 and 12 miles. That leaves me with 22 oz of water for 9 fairly hot miles. Which should work... I'll let you know.

So tomorrow, Friday, is my lightest exercise day which means tonight I get my one glass of wine for the week. Woo Hoo

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

New Blog

If you have any interest in my journey to 50k you can visit me at my new blog . I will still blog here a bit, but the other blog is shiny and new :)

Beating the Bulldog

So my plan is to run the Bulldog 50k in just over 7 weeks. It's a pretty treacherous 2 loop course that has a 4 mile ascent in each loop and many miles of single track trails. Did I mention I'm not a trail runner, haven't run trails in 3 or 4 years. I do have a training plan set, I just hope I can stick with it. It's hard to stomach a training run that's basically a marathon, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

My plan is to run or cross train every day. I will have some lighter cross training days as my rest days, but I will be doing some form of exercise daily. MWF will be cross training days where I will either bike or elliptical and do some weight training. And I will get my miles in the remaining days. I'd like to run more but I don't want to risk injury. I would definitely rather be a bit unprepared than injured before I even get to start.

Tuesday will be my hills and trails day, focusing on getting used to running up and down repeatedly. I don't plan to do hill repeats because I'm training for a 4 mile ascent, so I need to practice longer hills. Luckily I have a 2 mile uphill 5 minutes away, so I'm going to get very familiar with  that pavement. It also leads to trails so it's a pretty perfect route for me.

I still plan to incorporate one interval or tempo run into my routine although I'm not really worrying about speed for this Ultra, I just want to finish. But speed helps with endurance by maximizing aerobic power, so I'll do that run Thursday.

Then there are the long runs. What makes training for an ultra different from a marathon is 2 long runs a week rather than 1 long run and 1 recovery run. For instance, this Saturday I plan to run 15 miles for my long run. Normally I would do a 3-4 mile slower recovery run on Sunday but completing an ultra is all about time on your feet. I will run 7-8 miles Sunday giving me a total long distance of 22 miles or so and a weekly total of 35 miles. And every week that number goes up a bit. By week six I'll probably be running about 50 miles. That's a lot of time on my feet.

In a few weeks I will do a preview run of the course. I'll practice one loop and see how I like it. It's great for training, but I kind of like NOT knowing what I'm up against because I'll have more time to worry about it.

Stay tuned to see if my plan actually works...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Ultra Lauren

May and June kind of got away from me. I have a toddler, nuff said, right? Or I could go on; a toddler that runs, climbs, tries to jump off things and generally causes all sorts of mayhem. He's pretty darn fantastic. :) And super cute to boot.

(little trouble maker)

As if raising a toddler wasn't enough there's always a new adventure in the works. In May we held an incredibly crazy first birthday party with tons of toddlers and preschoolers, my husband went away for the whole month and Hunter decided not to nap or sleep the entire time he was gone. In June my husband returned but moved to a studio out of the house (he is missed but I'm super excited about the extra space) and Hunter started running (mostly into sharp corners.)

And now in July I'm embarking on another adventure all my own. I've decided to start training for a 50k trail run. The distance sounds a little crazy but I've run 5 marathons and a handful of other races. 50k is about 31 miles so just 5 miles longer than a marathon. 5 miles is nothing after 26, right? I'm hoping so.

I started training about a month ago with the intent to eventually run a marathon but couldn't find a marathon that I really wanted to run that occurred at the right time or in the right area. I've had my heart set on EVENTUALLY running an ultra, I just had no idea it would be in 8 weeks.

Today I did my first hill and trail training run. It was incredible! Leaving my house at 5:45 it was already 72 degrees, but 5 minutes away the hills were about 10 degrees cooler, almost chilly. And trails are so much more fun than running around the same park every day.

This run also happens to be a lengthened version of the first route I ran post partum, weighing 230 lbs. Let me tell you how awesome it was running it again. Not only have I dropped 75 pounds since then, but I've also dropped about 5 minutes from my pace. I felt so light and free, even while running 2 miles up a very steep incline. I absolutely cannot wait to run the trails again. I'm even looking forward to a 15 mile run on them.

So people keep asking why? Dude, I don't know, there are so many reasons. What I do know is that the first day I started training for my first marathon I told my friend I had this overwhelming feeling of "why haven't I been doing this my whole life?" Even though that first run was more walking and gasping for air, and ended with feet full of blisters and muscles sore for days, it was the best thing I've ever done for myself. I had this goal that seemed totally unattainable but I was on my way to completing it.

Now, 8 years later I've completed 5 full marathons and a handful of other races. Not too shabby for a chubby girl. And after all that and a pregnancy I'm in the best shape of my life and feel like "So what now?" This 50k seems right up my alley. It's a shorter distance for an ultra. Most REAL ultras are 50 miles, 100 miles and upward. 31 miles seems like a good place to start.

For years I never thought I could run fast but always knew I had the endurance to run forever, so I focused on training for longer distances. This year, actually the past 2 months, is the first time I was ever able to run a quick pace. I set a goal to run an average pace of 9 minutes and I reached that goal. Now I'm actually passing people, which is just nuts. So now I get to go back to my love of distance. And maybe when I complete this goal I'll go back to working on speed. I keep hearing a whisper telling me it's time to get to Boston.

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