Longest Run to Date and a Racecation Planned

Ironic that my last post was about setting PRs and the frustration I have been experiencing with not having set a running PR in quite some time…then BOOM, without any expectations, I set a running PR.  No, no, not some outrageous race time but my LONGEST RUN EVER!!!

image
Owe it to my new Brooks Launch running shoes..

Like I said in my last post, I have been focusing most of my time on Crossfit and have only been getting in super short runs later in the day if I have time.  Two weekends ago, I had a 14 miler planned but not a single bone in my body wanted to do it.  I don’t necessarily get excited for long runs but I don’t usually dread them like I was dreading that 14 miler.  Instead of forcing something that I just didn’t want to do, I ended up skipping my long run and doing yoga at my Crossfit box followed by a Sunday WOD and some extra lifting.  It was exactly what I wanted to do.  My body needed a good stretch and I was in the mood to lift and workout with people.  Being my first week of marathon training, (yup, MARATHON IS BOOKED.  Will explain later!), I felt a little guilty about bailing out on a long run this early into training but sometimes you just need to let yourself break away from the plan a bit and do what you want rather than what you feel you should do.

This past Sunday, I knew I had to stick to my schedule and I felt ready to take on the long run, especially because the weather was perfect.  With almost 2 weeks of little running since my last half marathon, I had no idea what to expect.  I set a goal of 10, a reach goal of 12 and if some miracle happened, then the intended 14 that I missed last week.

imageAh yes, I still smile when I see those numbers.  How did I do that??  But seriously…I wish I knew what made this run so perfect.  My legs felt fresh despite 5 straight days of working out before going into this run, my mind was relaxed and everything just felt great. I just kept tacking on more miles because my body and legs were willing to take it and not fighting against me for once!  Once I knew I was going to hit my reach goal of 12, I went a little further for 13 and though I could feel myself starting to weaken, I was way too close to that miracle so I slowed my pace down a bit and just remained controlled.  I reminded myself that a mile is just  my quick warm up around the block before Open Gym crossfit.  I can handle that!  And sure enough, I did 🙂  This was so needed.  I needed this running boost to remind myself that I can do this!  When I look at my training plan, those high mileage runs scare me, but I just need to take it one mile at a time.  I also need to remind myself that not every run is a good run and sometimes your legs just want to give up after mile 1.  Don’t force it.  If the run isn’t there, then save it.  Wait for the moment when it is.  It may not be part of the plan, but the plan will work itself out if it’s meant to happen.

Speaking of this whole marathon training thing that I keep mentioning…

image

I am making my way back to San Francisco this summer 🙂 I received this same confirmation email a year ago but only made it to the Half-marathon finish.

image
San Francisco Half-Marathon 2014

Lets see how it all plays out for Round 2.  I am excited..nervous…scared…but also relaxed.  I know that the trip will be amazing regardless of what happens.  If I don’t feel marathon ready then I will just switch to the half marathon and enjoy everything that race has to offer…THE GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE.  And even if NO running happens, I can enjoy a wonderful vacation with a great friend in a beautiful city.

Running wasn’t the only huge accomplishment this weekend but because I haven’t had many of those in a while I will boast about that the most 😉 On Saturday, I finally reached the highest double unders amount for my Crossfit box!  This has been a goal I have been trying to reach for weeks now and I am so happy it finally happened! 102 consecutive Double Unders! 

Funny story about reaching 102. On Friday I decided to try and set a new personal best seeing as I had been at 83 for a couple of weeks and Double Unders were in Friday’s WOD.

imageI made it up to 99! A new personal best (as of Friday) and a tie for first place at my box.  I walk in on Saturday and saw I had been bumped to 2nd because a phenomenal double underer (definitely not a word..) in the later class ended up hitting the whole 100! She is actually the person I learned double unders from.  I starred at her form and just tried to mimic it…a little creepy but true..and helpful!  Since I was still on cloud nine from my 99, I did not expect to have to tackle this challenge again but being only 1 away, it had to be done.  I didn’t get it on my first try but my legs were willing to jump 102 more times 🙂  I suspect this will lead to a little Double Under competition 😉 but what better way to stay motivated and continue to better my previous score!

Lets get to the good stuff and talk food…

image

Friday nights always call for burgers and a sad attempt (fail) at grilling artichokes.  When it comes to burger night, things get a little territorial so thankfully we had some chives to make sure our burgers are not mixed up 😉 I am a huge fan of the Trader Joe’s grass-fed 90% lean beef, mix in some onions and Flavor God spices and top it off with melted shredded Swiss cheese. Instead of buns I use one slice of toasted Ezekiel bread and just leave the top open and load on grilled onions, mushrooms and avocado!

image

This is has been a recent post-workout favorite!  If you are a chocolate lover like me, this is right up your alley.  I mixed my Vega-Sport Chocolate Protein powder with just enough Almond Milk to make a gooey fudge.  Chop up some fruit…apples, strawberries and bananas are my top choices...and just dip/SLATHER them in chocolate.

image

Lastly, after a cold and rainy 3-day field trip to Cape Cod last week, the only thing I wanted for dinner was grilled, HOT, food!  That is exactly what went down…Salmon, broccoli, brussel sprouts, chopped sweet potato fries.  Just what I needed after 3 days of cold food!

I hope everyone has a great rest of the week!  I will be road tripping it with my team tonight for a USATF 5k race in New Hampshire.

Wish us luck! 🙂

Sunny Long Run, Deck of Hell and First Fishing Trip of the Season

Happy Tuesday!

I definitely just changed that from Happy Monday to Happy Tuesday because my intentions for posting this yesterday fell through…

That weekend flew by but it was awesome!  My team had a night game on Friday and the team had a  beautiful turf field with music blasting.  It definitely brought back memories of my college games with such a professional and amped up atmosphere.  I will forever miss my lacrosse days.  There is nothing more special than game day and the opportunity to play your favorite sport with your best friends.  Ahh memory lane. Always sad that it’s over but forever grateful that it happened!

Enough with the sappy lines, moving on!   Saturday was an eventful and exhausting day starting with an awesome crossfit workout.  We all decided to ditch the workouts we had planned and did a workout called the “Deck of Hell”.  Our coach had a deck of cards and assigned a move to each suite. Our four movements were burpees, pull ups, med ball cleans and weighted sit-ups.  Every time a card was flipped we had to do the move as many times as the number on the card and Jokers were 200m sprints.  It didn’t sound too tough of a WOD when we started but when the face cards keep popping up meaning 11 burpees or 11 pull-ups, it became clear how the workout got it’s name!

With a great WOD done and the sun shinning, it was time to dust off the fishing poles and kayaks for our first fishing adventure of the season.  It was more of tanning session with the lack of bites BUT I did catch 3!

image

The ‘Deck of Hell’ and a few fish later, we were definitely due for a big ol’ burger and nachos and that is exactly what went down after a quick nap.

After checking the weather for my long run on Sunday, I decided that an early morning wake-up was essential if I wanted to beat the heat and spare myself from a brutal run in the sun.  However, my body and phone had other plans.  My alarm never went off, which is how Sundays should be, so at 9am I flew out of bed, laced up and headed out as fast as I could. Despite the effort, I definitely did not beat the heat and probably did not hydrate as well as I should have because it was a hot one!

image

Any runner can attest that stopping just short of an even mile is just not something you do.  Even if you have to run up and down your driveway until you get that even mile, you WILL do it. But unfortunately, I was way too thirsty to check where I was at.  I knew I was well past 10 miles and that was enough for me to call it quits.

The last 5 miles was spent dreaming of this…

image

Yup.  There is nothing better than that feeling of being done, kicking back and chugging ice water after.  This position did not last long because I had to coach at noon, but it was glorious while it lasted.

We ended the weekend on a great note with some amazing homemade shrimp tacos!

image

Picked up some peeled and deveined organic shrimp cooked with Flavor God seasoning, broiled cabbage for some crunch, and homemade paleo tortillas taken from Stupid Easy Paleo.  These new tortillas are perfect!  They cook in 2 minutes, the size can be adjusted based on the frying pan diameter and they fold without breaking!  My next plan is to buy those egg yolk circles to make small, round tortillas as buns for my homemade burgers.

Another perfect meal from the week was a big salad, grilled steak with grilled carrots, sweet potato fries and onions.

image

I was debating whether I should order red compression socks for this weekend’s Boston Run to Remember Half marathon..then I saw this amazing email!

imageHoly Smokes! What a deal.

I probably do not need any more compression socks and may not even get the red color, but for $39,I am willing to test my luck.  Nothing like a good surprise to add an element of excitement to the work week.  I will keep you all posted on what my Grab Bag has!

Oh and Mei would also like to say hi to you all.  There is nothing better than coming home to this cutie after a long day!

image

I definitely needed to see this face after a pretty rough day.  I also needed a little extra miles to clear my head so I set out for a slow 4 miler before dinner.  Despite the 50 pistol squats from this morning’s WOD, it wasn’t as tough as I thought it would be.

Speaking of dinner, we have a pretty classy set up for blocking the sun..

image

Rumor has it, it’s not permanent but I am not sold on that 😉 Permanent or not, I’m just grateful and happy to have a delicious grilled dinner outside with a beautiful sunset.

Have a great week! Only 4 more days until a nice little racecation with my Mom 🙂

A Long Overdue Check-In and a Killer Smoothie Bowl

Wow.  It is safe to say that my blogging activity will hit an all time low this Spring.  I am three weeks into coaching Varsity lacrosse and despite how much fun it is to watch the team grow each day, my stress level is in overdrive which has not been very helpful when trying to kick this cold that has been lingering for the past 2 weeks.

But here I am – a little less stressed now that I am adjusting to my busy schedule, my cold seems to be just about gone, and the weather is looking a bit more like spring which is enough to put a smile on my face.

Since my last recap/half marathon post (3 weeks ago, WHAT?!), I have done a good amount of resting.  My body and mind needed it.

Two weekends ago (week after my half marathon), I had a St. Patrick’s Day 10k.  Despite the brutal beating my body took during the last half marathon, I didn’t want to take the ENTIRE week off after the half and show up to the 10k out of it, so I did some workouts here and there.  In hindsight, I was probably better off just taking the week completely off because every workout I squeezed in just hurt.  It was my first week of coaching lacrosse, every muscle in my body was still sore from the race, and my cold was coming in strong…let’s just say it was a tough week.

If there is one thing I have learned over the past couple of weeks, it is the amount of training you do and how hard you push becomes completely meaningless if you are not taking care of your body.  I pushed through the half marathon on little rest after a brutal workout which resulted in a terrible race.  In the midst of trying to recover from that race, I tried to squeeze in more workouts to prepare for my 10k, hence little recovery.  What do you think happened at THAT race? Another poor and painful performance. My time was 42:20 and I placed 20th female.  I hate to complain and say “ugh I did so bad” because to someone reading this, it could be a phenomenal time.  So I guess I will go with this…I am grateful to have been able to run a 42:20 and I am proud that I pushed through some pretty painful miles, but this was about 2 minutes slower than the 10k I ran in Disney and I am pretty sure it had nothing to do with my training and more on my inability to pay attention and listen to what my body needed. REST.

After the 10k, I did have one more thing I had to take care of… Crossfit Open Workout 15.4.

image

I promised myself on Sunday morning after the rough 15.4 open and a day after my 10k that I would take 3 complete days off.  Those three days were just what I needed.  I just needed to get home after practice with not a care in the world about getting a workout in.  I just needed to be home before 6 to enjoy down time.  I just needed to get to bed early and kick the cold.  It was a perfect few days of rest.  I did have that itch to get back into it so on Thursday I was ready to get in a 5am crossfit WOD.

image

It wasn’t my favorite thing to set this alarm..but once I was up and had the music blasting with a cup a coffee on my ride over, I was ready to take on the Hero WOD.

imageOh man.  What a workout to come back to. It hurt.  But finally a good hurt. One great thing about WODing in the morning is the great stretch you get before the day has even started.  Despite the sore legs, the rest of your body feels so lose.

Another great thing about Thursday morning was the start of a delicious smoothie bowl kick that I have been.

imageQuick, delicious, nutritious and doesn’t leave the full/bloated feeling that I sometimes experience after eggs.  I used my new Ninja food processor to blend up 1/3 cup of rolled oats, 1 scoop Vega Sport protein powder, spinach, mixed frozen berries and almond milk.  The mixed nuts and cacao nibs add the perfect crunch!  It is safe to say that this has been my breakfast for the last 2 weeks and I not sure if that is going to change anytime soon.

Another wonderful meal was our Sunday evening homemade burger night..

imageTrader Joe’s 90/10 ground beef cooked on the grill, chopped and broiled sweet potato fries and homemade tortilla chips with melted cheese.  It was perfect.  

imageThe homemade tortilla chips are something I have been meaning to try but never got around to it.  I guess I didn’t realize just how simple they are.  Sliced Ezekiel tortilla sprayed with coconut oil and sprinkled with Himalayan seat salt, garlic powder and curry powder – baked @ 350 for 8-10 min.

Another great meal was chicken cooked with curry sauce topped with sautéed mushrooms and onions, broiled Brussel sprouts and broiled sweet potato fries.  I am convinced that any meal can be made delicious by adding broiled sweet potato fries and covering everything in mushrooms and onions…

imageOn a less attractive note is this wonderful battle wound from another 5am WOD with burpees….

image

image

At least I had a cute little pup to serve me a post-workout smoothie bowl at 7am as I rushed to work..

imageI think I have hit the point where this post is getting obnoxiously long so I will leave you with a couple great pictures.

imageMy Disney Princess Challenge prizes came in!

image

..and my babies are enjoying the warm temps just as much as I am! 🙂