Summer Vacation is Finally Here…for a few hours

Tuesday at noon was my official start to summer! WooHooo!…but of course, Wednesday at 8am was my official start of a summer statistics class.  It only meets 5 times over the course of the summer so I can’t complain…especially because 1.) I get bored so easily over the summer and 2.) I LOVE STATISTICS

image..and 3.) I love the juice bar at UMass and my brand new colorful pens and notebook 🙂

Before I get into all this summer vacation talk and the things I have planned aside from number crunching, I have to start off by saying I AM ONLY ONE HARD TRAINING RUN AWAY FROM BEING MARATHON READY!  I conquered the 18 miler last Saturday…by myself! image I am not going to lie, I was freaking out Friday evening because I couldn’t recruit anyone to run that final few/6 miles with me.  I really/obsessively questioned whether I could tackle the run by myself.  My boyfriend mapped out a new route that was the perfect distance, 12 miles through surrounding neighborhoods and then the final 6 miles in a beautiful and FLAT reservoir less than a mile from our house…also serves as a good meeting place if I had someone to run with.  I tried not to talk about my nerves and uncertainty too much because I know that non-runners are not a huge fan of listening to anything involving running let alone running a crazy 18 miles.  We drove the route the night before to make sure I had my roads correct, I put out water at mile 9 miles and was all set to conquer the run…unfortunately alone.  I woke up early Saturday morning to ensure that would I beat the heat.  Boy was I nervous.  I don’t know what it is about long runs that makes me anxious.  My theory is that ‘the long run’ is not just a normal run.  You (or maybe it’s just me!) have to mentally prepare for it. I have to pump myself up for it.  It is not one of those runs where you just get out there and just crank out a few miles.  You have to train your mind to not focus on the time, not focus on how many miles left, not focus on pace and to solely focus on taking in the world around you.  I think my nerves kick in because so much effort goes into preparing for the long run..the mental aspect, the water placement, the GU, the weather…and then there’s the thought of ‘after ALL this preparation, what if I can’t do it or my legs just feel terrible’.  There are days when I am rested yet my legs still feel horrible and then there are other days where I already worked out and yet my legs feel great.  It seems like I can never control how my legs are going to feel and that uncontrollable piece is scary especially when your about to conquer lots of miles.  I guess when you put so much effort into preparing for something, it’s natural to be nervous.  Nervous that the plan that is prepped and set in place could potentially fall through.  And the craziest part of all, is most of the time, it all works out..yet I still always get those nerves.  And even if it happened to not be my day for a long run, there are plenty of other days to try again! Thankfully last Saturday was my day and I had a great run at a solid pace 🙂

My legs were surprisingly not too sore on Sunday so I was able to get in a good yoga session and Crossfit workout.  As for Monday, I wasn’t sore but certainly not ready to take on the 100 burpees that they had on the agenda. No thank you!  I did a nice evening shake out run and a bike ride instead. By Thursday, my legs were definitely ready to rest up and thankfully my Compex muscle stimulation came in the mail just when I needed it the most! image I did not hesitate to use it! I hooked it right up to my hamstrings and let it do its thing! It certainly worked its magic because my legs felt great for Saturday’s (yesterday’s) 15 miler! image It is crazy that ‘scaling back’ this week means a 15 mile run.  A month ago 15 miles would have been my longest run in history and now it doesn’t seem so long.  It could of been because my wonderful mom jumped in and ran the last 5 miles with me to take my mind off that last leg!

I had to get to afternoon party but I certainly did not skip on a post-long run ice bath in my neighbors pool, a nice oatmeal cereal with fruit and nuts, and a quick stim session. image image

Next up…the 20 miler.  Nothing like kicking off the 4th of July with a light run 😉

Before I end this post, I have to show you all another accomplishment that went down this week…

image

 I successfully managed to create homemade spring rolls!  I used Brown Rice paper (soaked in warm water) and filled them with sliced cucumbers, carrots, romaine lettuce, avocado, kelp noodles, shrimp and a drizzle of homemade peanut sauce.  I could use a bit more work on my rolling skills but all in all, they came out great…and half the price of what I would pay at a sushi restaurant.

ONE MORE THING…my Timehop app reminded me that exactly 3 years ago I ran my first half marathon!

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Wow. It is crazy to think about how much has changed/happened over these past 3 years.  I have grown in so many ways.  In those 3 years, I ran 14 more half marathons, earned my Masters Degree, started my teaching career,  started Crossfit and am now training/3 weeks away from my first marathon…oh and met an incredibly amazing person that puts a smile on my face everyday 🙂

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