Where does time go?!

I feel like a broken record saying this, but I’m going to try my very best to keep up with my blog! 😛 In my defense though my summer so far has been crazy busy. Here are some highlights:

I had a weekend getaway in New York visiting my sister for her birthday. We explored both Manhattan and Brooklyn, and ate so much delicious food. I seriously don’t think I’ll ever eat that good of a chocolate croissant or muffin or taco or omelet or….. Seriously the food was amazing. We even ate at this amazing vegan tapas styled restaurant. I had vegetables cooked in a way I had never even thought about!

A couple weeks ago I started training for my half marathon in September. One hot and humid morning my too small socks caused gross blisters on my heels. And I’m talking gross, the kind when you remove your sock skin comes off. I played around with methods of getting it to heal and it wasn’t until I used a liquid band aid and regular band aid combo was it able to heal. I still have scab weirdness on my heals but at least they’re not open grossness!

Only two days after I got those gross blisters I ran a 5k. It was my goal to PR. I felt great during my run despite my heels, and just kept pushing it. People of all ages were passing me, and I thought oh well, I know I’m doing a good time for me I’m not going to worry about anyone else. When I finished my run I PR’d with an average of an 8:41 min mile!! I know for some runners that’s “easy” talk but for me that’s awesome! Just 4 years ago when I started running I had a hard time running ONE mile at a 16 min pace. I was unbelievably shocked to find out I placed 3rd in my age group! I was only 2 minutes shy from being 2nd, but I try not to think about that too much… 😉

A few days later I woke up in the middle of the night with excruciating pain in my toe. It had been 16 days of pain at that point actually, I had just been ignoring it. I first noticed it my last day in New York. My toe was crazy swollen, and painfully ached. I blamed it on walking about 7 miles every day in sandals, and figured it would go away. Since icing, elevating, 1-2 day rests, and an inflammation reducer pain killer didn’t help, I decided to go to an orthopedic sports medicine doctor. The result? A stress fracture. I was given a post-op shoe and told to use it for the next 3 weeks and hopefully by then I can start running again, but in the mean time be “creative” with my workouts. Cycling, rowing, and lifting are all ok, but bending my toes/foot and putting weight on it is not okay. It was frustrating news since I had just started my half marathon training, but I guess I’d rather get better early on then have to stop in the middle of training and not even get a chance to run it. I’ve had a week off of running at this point and I can say the pain has gone away and the majority of the swelling has gone too. I have been biking, rowing, and lifting mainly at OrangeTheory but some of the biking has been with my family or my friend who I have been training with. I ended up designing a new training plan, which I’ll share with you all later (#goals)!

A few days after the depressing news I got my hair done at my favorite salon (hello summer blonde hair), ate an amazing dinner for our 6 year wedding anniversary and went with David, the kids, and friends to the beach to celebrate our actual anniversary day!

If I’m not at work, taking care of the kids, or exercising I’ve been catching up on laundry, cleaning the house, painting the house, gardening, and a hopefully a soon finished fun yard project (again I’ll share with you later, #goals)!

My husband has about 50 more pages of his dissertation to write and I feel a bit bummed for him. I know it’s a lot of stress on him, and he’s trying to be an involved husband and Dad, but that is difficult to do when there’s a deadline. We keep telling ourselves, “graduation May 5, 2018”!

Now that I’ve talked your ear off, enjoy your weekend!

Katie

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13 Reasons, 13 Miles

A couple months ago I decided that for my second half marathon I wanted to dedicate each mile to someone or something who has really moved me. I’m hoping that it’ll help me get through the tough miles and push harder and faster throughout all of them.

So here are my 13 miles:

1.  Boston (To the survivors, those who passed away, those whose lives will be forever impacted, for doctors/nurses/paramedics/etc. who were involved in saving lives, for the police field that acted quickly and tiresomely to keep people safe, to those who revisited painful memories during the trials to provide witness, and to those who do not loose hope and are Boston Strong)

2. Michelle (A friend and runner who a week ago injured her ankle and had to bow out of this run with me, and for her casual way about running… how have you run so many half marathons!?!!)

3. Ella Joy (A sweet girl who used to attend my art and story time programs who is currently battling very aggressive cancer. This is for her, her family and that God heals quickly)

4. Jonah (Knowing him since high school I’ve seen him go through so much, and also he has for me. Almost 4 years ago he was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer and given a 6% 5 year survival rate. This August will be 4 years, and in September he is starting a Social Work Masters program. I couldn’t be more happy that he has defeated the odds, and found a calling that speaks to him)

5. Mandee (I’ve been charmed for almost 10 years by Mandee’s quirky humor and up for anythingness. Mandee is a true and good friend who would drop anything if you were ever in need ❤ )

6. This past year/new friends (This has certainly been a transitional year for me, and I want to dedicate this time to reflect on it)

7. David’s family (It’s so big they could fill up a FULL marathon so I’m going to squish them all into mile 7-heehee)

8. My parents (Obviously if it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be here!)

9. Mary (My sister who I’m so proud of, gets me, and no matter what is there for me)

10. Leo (My little goofball who is one cuddly teddy bear and I am so grateful to have him in my life)

11. Zooey (My little angel girl who I love so dearly and always is making me laugh)

12. David (The love of my life, my husband, my sweetheart. We have so many precious memories together)

13 (.1). God (Through my last and probably toughest mile I want to be thanking God for giving me a body so strong and capable of doing something I used to think was never imaginable)

 

If you do know me, and didn’t make it onto my list don’t pout, you’ll probably be on an upcoming race list 😉

Wish me luck and love you all! ❤

Half Marathon Week is Here!

The week of my half marathon is finally here! I’ve been obsessively checking the weather and seeing the rain percentage creep higher and higher, but as of yesterday it changed to 65 degrees, sunny with 0% chance of rain! Holy cow I think that’s the perfect weather for a run! I’ve been trying to remain positive, and visualizing a great run this Sunday.

I had two rest days (on Sunday-Easter-and Monday). At first I thought how can I not go for a short run, but then I just enjoyed it! Yesterday (Tuesday) as I got ready for my Leo-is-napping-while-Zooey-is-at-preschool-run I realized that I had left my running shoes in Davids car! The closest shoes to running shoes I had with me were some semi beaten up Keds! I slid them on, tied the laces, and said let’s just see how the first mile goes. Part of me was nervous that the lack of support would injure me while the other part was thinking about all those fancy expensive barefoot shoes and that I’ll be just fine. The first half mile was just hard, but around mile 1 I was feeling great. I slowly bumped up the pace and finished an awesome 4 miles!

The next three days I’m actually planning on going to Orange Theory. I love those workouts because you get 30 minutes of a challenging run and then 30 more minutes of cardio from the rower and strength from weights. Personally I think it’s the perfect one hour workout. I will fit in one more short run on Thursday, and then of course rest on Saturday (the day before the run).

Right now i’m in that “I’m so nervous but so excited” emotion, and thinking what am I going to wear, what’s the weather going to be like, am I going to get sick, etc.

Seriously though, what am I going to wear!?

 

😉

 

Own Worst Critic

I’ve been a bit MIA lately, and I feel like I’m a broken record saying that, but to be real honest here I’ve been my own worst critic as of late. At the end of November I slipped down two steps and broke my toe having to miss two back to back races a 4 mile and 10k. I was beyond bummed having to miss them and cursing myself the same time for being so clutzy (word of advice be really careful walking down wooden stairs wearing cozy socks)!

Once my toe healed I started training again for an April half marathon. However, having two young kids during winter means that you’re going to get sick… a lot! My butt kept getting kicked by colds and even the stomach flu! Then surprisingly on the last mile of a fantastic long run I started getting bad chest pain as in I couldn’t breathe without pain. I ended up seeing the doctor, because that had never happened to me before while running. I ended up having an EKG and an ECHO. 10 years ago I had been diagnosed with Mitral Valve Prolapse which can cause palpitations and chest pain from time to time. We thought that the prolapse could be getting worse. Between my ECHO appointment and finding out the results I was on a “no exercise allowed” regime. During those couple weeks I just got more and more bummed trying to imagine my life if I was given a no cardio diagnosis. Results time came and to my surprise my heart is SUPER healthy and I don’t even have mitral valve prolapse! Either I was misdiagnosed 10 years ago and living my life believing every bit of chest pain or palpitation was caused by that, or somehow my heart was magically healed! Either way it was a shock. I have defined myself the past 10 years with that defect, and now I don’t have it. I do have bouts of anxiety and depression so the doctor believes what I experienced may have been one scary panic attack. Wow, I’m feeling like being super honest today!

Since I was given the clear I went full force into training for the half. I have been running 3-8 miles regularly, getting my butt kicked at Orange Theory, taking yoga classes, and eating fairly clean. I have noticed myself getting stronger, and even my runs have been faster (one of my miles last week was 6:50 pace which was totally surprising since at the time it didn’t feel like I was going that fast and I’ve never ever done that before or believed I could even run that fast)! Despite all of my success with my workouts and runs I have still been beating myself up. Can you guess why? Because the scale hasn’t moved. I weigh about 16 pounds more than I did before having my 2nd kid, and he just turned 2. I’ve been a bit frustrated with myself that I haven’t been able to shake that weight, and when I’m kind to myself I like to think that it’s all muscle weight 😉 The weight thing isn’t meant to be vain, but rather I want to be strong, I want to fit into my old pants, and I want to feel comfortable in my own body (which can be hard to do when you wear a 32G bra-reduction please)! Seriously have I been given a truth serum or something? I guess I have the stomach flu of writing because I’m just vomiting words everywhere!

Anyway, where I’m at is this: It’s Saturday and next Sunday is my (2nd) half marathon. I am so scared to run it. I have a big fear that I can’t do it. With all of these issues that have happened since the end of November I feel like at this point I’m just looking for excuses as to why I can’t run it. I need my ballsy confidence back. I need to stop being my own worst critic.

How do I gain that confidence? How do I defeat my prerace jitters?

 

Weekly Run Review

The past two weeks have flown by and I believe that I owe you TWO run reviews! I think it’s one of those situations where no news is good news, and I have no news… Well, I guess the news is that I’ve been rocking my runs! My shorter runs have been pain free and great, and my long runs well despite being long and leaving me a sweaty mess have been outstanding!

Here are a few things I have learned though and may end up being tips for you:

  • It is getting lighter later and darker earlier so it is important to invest in reflective gear and/or lights, and know rules of running outdoors when it is dark. I have a reflective pouch for carrying my items and also a blinking light to clip on to my waist, shirt, or even sleeve cuff. This may seem odd but MANY runners including guru runner Hal Higdon suggest running facing traffic, that way you can see who is coming and can hop out of the way if need be. Another tip is always be on the lookout for drivers and be cautious! Just because you can see them doesn’t mean they have noticed you.
  • On long runs especially when it’s hot out, it’s important to stay hydrated. Either have water with you or plan your route knowing what water options are around. I have literally planned my long runs around knowing where my public drinking fountains are, and also I have started taking starburst with for not only a little bit of extra energy but also to help pseudo-quench any thirst I have between water stops. (Pausing for water is also a great way to stretch out you body especially since it’s gotten warmed up and the muscles are ready to stretch out,
    also I had one starburst on my 9 mile run)
  • Wearing a heart rate monitor especially on the long runs I found helpful. I realized that at times when I would’ve thought, “I’m tired,” when I saw my heart rate zone in the “walking the dog around
    me

    Almost Half Crazy!

    the park” zone I realized that I’m good and I can actually push myself even more! Once I started pushing myself and monitoring my zone I got in a more exciting consistent pace which I believe took up my pace a notch. Woohoo!

  • Lastly, this may seem like a no brainer but showering helps period, washing your gear helps maintain it longer, and replacing gear even when you feel that you just bought it-well if it needs to be replaced, just replace it.

Happy Trails! XO

2 Months to Half Marathon

Yowza! I have 2 months until my first half marathon!! With that in mind I decided to try out themadison-fall-marathon “compound effect” when it comes to my training. So with each week I will add something new that will help me grow stronger and healthier for my final days of training! The idea of the compound effect is that if you do small things daily it will grow big, and if you add small things on top of small things think of all that you can accomplish!

I have 8 weeks to go and this is how I’m going to rock it!

  1. Minimum of 8 cups of H20 daily! (I admit, I’m not consistent with this at all)
  2. Daily leg stretches and strengthening
  3. Daily torso stretches and strengthening
  4. Daily arm stretches and strengthening
  5. No alcohol
  6. Daily walk or run (point is to move every day even if it’s an easy walk)
  7. No sugar (Just in time to avoid eating all that leftover Halloween candy!)
  8. Bed by 10 PM each night

I’ll make sure to share with you how it goes, and this might all blow up in my face, but hey it’s worth the optimism and the try!

XO

Weekly Run Review

Wow, I can’t believe I’m writing this, but last week I felt defeated. I’m also going to be honest here (I know sometimes on blogs and/or social media people’s lives may seem flawless), but I’m here to tell you that there are flaws. Honestly, I planned my week poorly when it came to running. Not only was I flying back from NY, “mommyied”, worked, and celebrated my birthday but I also had to fit in miles for the week. I thought, “gosh, I’m so busy at the beginning, I’ll squeeze it in at the end of the week.” In theory sure that sounds great, but in actuality between stormy weather, mommy schedules, and leg pain I ran once. ONCE!

The one time I ran was for 5 miles, and I felt AMAZING! It is embarrassing to say though that it was my only time I ran for the week which is way off for my training. Sure I can beat myself up, and the perfectionist in me sure wants to, but I’m reminding myself that like many things in life there is always room for improvement. I’m choosing to evaluate where things went wrong and see what I can do to improve it so that I do not have this sort of week again.

Here are some examples:

  • Finally get around to setting up my treadmill space in the basement (we are still in the “moving in” stage” down there) so that I can run in case of a storm
  • Go to bed earlier so that I can wake up earlier to run
  • Get reflective gear to feel comfortable running outdoors in the dark/dawn/dusk (already done)
  • Investigate options for sore legs as in compression socks, new shoes, strengthening and stretchingpic
  • Find a running partner to help me feel more accountable
  • Run shorter distances more frequently in case weeks get so busy I can’t commit to multiple long runs each week

After I rested when my legs felt like they were going to fall off, I planned on running 2 miles on Sunday,
but was pleased with running 3 just because I felt so good.

Running is about learning, being able to accept and handle what you learn, and implement improvement. Keep your chin up and your laces tied 😉

XO