Saturday, August 31, 2013

My 1st Spin Class

Yesterday- 7 miles. 2 mile warm up, 22 minutes 1 min hard 1 min recovery, cool down. 

Today-my first spin class and 3 mile run 

A good friend of mine and avid triathlete invited me to spin class this morning at 8 am.  Can I just tell you how much I loved it?! Like it ended and I wanted more even though I was soaked and had a puddle under my bike. It was such a great workout and the instructor was awesome. 

I bike with my road bike, but this took it to a whole new level.  I might beg for a gym membership! We used to belong to a gym before Cole was born but the place we went to didn't offer classes. Once Cole was born we decided working out at home would be the best way to save money and time.  ( We have a treadmill, elliptical, some free weights, workout DVDs). This has been working out really well. But today I realized how much I miss working out with other people.  I feel like I push myself more around others and I love the bond.  The daycare is super clean and nice at this place too but it's an extra $25 a month.  Decisions decisions.  And anyone that knows me will tell you I have a problem with making decisions.  

For example, last weekend I had to pick a nail color at the salon and I am still wishing I would have picked a different color.  
I need help. 

Anyway after the spin class Chris was going to his fantasy football draft and I had planned on going to the waterpark. The weather decided it wasn't going to cooperate and it started to storm.  So I went with plan B and Chris' favorite plan - shopping ;-).  
I went into the store with Cole and left with a frog. He loves frogs. 
These shoes came home with us.  He refused to take them off. In fact, he is sleeping with them on right now.  I didn't think I would have this issue with a boy, but he seriously has a shoe fetish. 
Then he decided he wanted to relax. 

After his nap I met my mom at the waterpark for a few hours. I wasn't going to go, but thought I should take Cole for one last time this year!
We came home and headed out to the high school football game. 

I hope you are enjoying your weekend!

Have you taken a spin class? Did you like it?
What's your favorite fitness class?

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Thoughts on the sport of running

30 min on the elliptical before work ( I had a hard time getting up today!)
5 miles on the treadmill after work - my mother-in-law asked to take Cole for an hour. So I ran. 
3 sets of: 15 kettlebell swings, 15 push ups, 30 sit ups 

Super broken up, but felt great. Except for the shin- back to icing, stretching, and rolling. 

Connecting with a "non-runner" 

Do you ever feel like your non-running friends or family don't understand your sport?  I have heard this topic come up often with my running friends.  On the RunJunkEe Facebook page a runner was frustrated by a non-running friend and it made me think.  

Luckily I have had a lot of positive feedback for what I do. My parents and in- laws both support my running, as do my other family members, friends, and co- workers. Or at least they act like they do.  I have a few situations where friends/ family have questioned my running and tried to attribute other conditions I was suffering from to my running. However I have many positive conversations about running daily. 

I work with a wonderful teacher who has taught 25 plus years and she made my day this morning. She ran into my classroom at 7:20 this morning and said she woke up at 4:30 and just couldn't get back to sleep, and she said " then I thought of you, you wake up and run, so I did".  She said she took her dog and did 3.4 miles. She was so so happy and in an amazing mood. She made me so happy and put a smile on my face. 

Another coworker of mine also said she went for a 2.5 mile run last night, and wants to sign up for a race.  My heart was smiling. ( 2 years ago she did a half marathon with me and had dreamed of running a marathon. With lots going on at home, she stopped for a bit, but is quickly getting back into it!)

So, I love running, but I don't talk about it much with my "non-running" friends because I know that it is probably of no interest to them. However, when they ask for advice or thoughts, my heart smiles and I try to help in any way I can.  I love when people want to give running a try.  

Like I said, I try to keep my running talk minimal and talk with the people that enjoy running ( or write about it!)  However, every once in a while a non-runner will try to convince me that running isn't healthy.  That is what was posted on the RunJunkEe Facebook page.  

It stated that non-runners sometimes...
1. Have an idea that running is unhealthy 
2. It is easy
3. It is bad for joints, knees and back
4. It's an unhealthy obsession that demonstrates selfishness
5. That running is just becoming a business to make people buy things. 
6. How selfish and arrogant it is to compete in races because it is a non team sport and focused on yourself 

Reading these things did frustrate me and started a good conversation with my hubby. 

He brought up some good points:

Some people don't understand...
1. The work it takes to be a runner
2. The science of getting better
3. The mental and physical strength required. The stamina of mental and physical strength is huge. 
4. In running you can't hide behind a teammate. You can't blame a ref for a bad call.  
5.  The success and failure is solely in the runner. 
6. We put blood, sweat and tears into running without an audience applauding. 
7. We don't do it for a million dollar contract. 
8. We go out in all weather conditions. Day after day. 

Now I know that many people don't understand running and don't care to.  I have even been out to dinner or grocery shopping and had someone come up to my saying " aren't you that lady that runs with the stroller" or similar conversations.  They sometimes look annoyed, and sometimes inspired. I guess I'd love for everyone to be able to feel the benefits of a good run. 

It may seem unhealthy or selfish, but what it does for my soul, spirit, and self-esteem is beyond amazing.  It makes me feel so alive, calm, and ready to tackle anything.  I find Chris and I to be a very calm couple, things that ruffle others feathers just aren't a big deal to us.  Part of that is our personality, but I think more than that, it is the calm that running provides for us.  It really helps us " stop sweating the small stuff". It makes us energized and ready to tackle the day and all obstacles we will face. It connects us and centers us. 

 Yes, it may seem selfish to take an hour a day to simply run.  But I whole heartily believe we have a better family life because of it. I am a better wife, mother, teacher and friend because of it. I make time for my run because I find to it is what is right for our family.  

I guess I should end my rant. I could go on and on:) 

I love running<3
What are your thoughts on running?
Have you had similar conversations? What so you say?
What does running give to you? 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tangent Tuesday

6 miles - super slow. It is so hot and humid here. Not enjoyable. 

Yesterday I took off from running to recover from the half. I didn't feel sore at all, which makes me think I need to push myself more.  I took a 1.5 mile walk with Cole and 30 minutes on the elliptical to loosen up. 

1. I am ready for work to slow down. Aligning and creating lessons to fit the common core is challenging and time consuming. 
2. I am so ready for a 3 day weekend!! We plan to go to the waterpark for the last time, a cougars game or two, and relax! 
3. Chris' 1st and only home meet was canceled due to the heat on Monday.  I was bummed. 
4. I stopped at Chris' lifting practice today and his runners are just amazing. I wanted to start lifting with them! I know I need to make it a priority. Help me please with this!!!
5. I have the most painful and disgusting blister on my foot. I am sure wanted to hear this. How do I fix it?!
6. Cole is a great stretching buddy. 
7. I am kinda in a running rut. My pace has been slow, I feel my form is off, and long runs have been hard.  I love long runs. I told my husband this weekend that after Chicago I might just stick to half marathons for a while. They are less time consuming and taxing.  I'd love to get a 1:35. 
8.  My last 3 half marathons have all been 1:37s. Ironic.  I'm in a rut! 
9. Best mom ever. 
10. I am craving another family vacation! 

I hope you had a wonderful Tuesday!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Birthday Weekend

I have to say I feel very blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life. They made my birthday weekend extra special! 

Saturday- my actual birthday 
 I started the day with a 5 mile run at a super easy pace.  Since it was such a beautiful day we spent most of the morning outside, and around noon I headed out to meet up with my sister for some shopping and lunch as the boys napped. 

Whole foods for dessert. We shared this piece of heaven. 

Then it was off to Nordstrom Rack for some shopping.  
I got these jeans that are so comfy!! 
And these for only $16!!!! Super clearance!!
This top was so cute on my sister, but the straps were funny. She passed. 

After lunch and shopping I came home and my mother-in-law and sister-in-law came down. Of course they were too generous as always. 

Then it was time to take the little man to my parents for a sleep over. This is only his second sleep over so I get nervous! 
Look at that smile:) 
So thankful for parents that support our love for running and help out!
Chris and I went out for dinner and ice cream. Yes I have food in my mouth and Chris is just giving his odd smile. 

We had no child but still went to bed at 9:30! We are pathetic, at least I could use the early wake up call as an excuse. 

We woke up at 5 and met up with 2 of Chris' coaches for the half. 
Pre race and super sleepy still. 

The race started at 7 and off we went. I felt pretty good the whole race, but the hills at miles 8-10 were tough.  My pace stayed between 7:30-7:20 for the first 10 miles.  At about mile 9 I could hear Chris' cross country runners at aide station 10.5, so it gave me an extra boost. 
Super fun water station! Thanks YHS cross country! 

After the boost from the group I dropped my pace to about 7:00/miles for the last 3.  

I felt great, but wish I could have pushed it a bit more.  I cannot break 1:37, but I will. 
Every half marathon I do I run about 13.3 rather than 13.1. Next time I will stop my watch at 13.1 or learn how to run tangents better.  Wish I would have ran 15 seconds faster! ( official time 1:37.12)

Chris ran a 1:25, he's so fast! Ironically he was the 17th male/500 plus males and I was the 17th female/500 plus females
I love this race, and will recap the race soon. 

The rest of the day in pictures 
Ran 5 more miles with my sister. We went super slow.  I got a total of 18 in for the day. 
We got our nails done and went grocery shopping.  I kind of didn't know what to do with myself since Chris was on a canoe trip with his team and my parents still had Cole. 
So we just twiddled our thumbs.
Actually we got ready for dinner. I just love her! 
Then they finally arrived! 
We tried out the new Mongolian restaurant. It was delicious. 
And had the best birthday cake ever!! Thanks mom!!

I have a feeling 28 will be a great year! 

How was your weekend? What's the best thing you ate? 

Saturday, August 24, 2013


Well, we do have electricity and all is good! I swear we always have crazy random problems. Last year it was the raccoons, skunk, and opossum invading our property.  They chewed through our bathtub jet wiring and Direct TV cables.  It's always an adventure. 

This week Chris had parent nights and open house Tuesday and Wednesday night, and of course things always go crazy when he isn't around. Very thankful for my in-laws for coming to help out!

Since I haven't really posted I will recap my workouts this morning. I was able to wake up early every morning and get it done. I am loving early workouts. 

Monday- 30 minutes elliptical. Recovery from my 17 miler 
Tuesday- 7 miles easy 
Wednesday- 2 mile w/u, 10- 1 min on 1 min off, cool down. Total 7 miles. 
Thursday- day off. Chris has morning practice 
Friday- 7 miles easy 
Saturday- should be a day off, but I feel so much better after a run and have been pretty stressed with work- so maybe a quick 4-5miles
Sunday- half marathon. I am supposed to run 19, but thinking I will just do the half. My shin after Wednesdays run has been tender. 

As you can see 7 miles has been my go to run.  For some reason that distance is my sweet spot right now and everything feels better after I hit 7 miles. 

Balancing Act 
At the beginning of every school year I really struggle balancing everything and takes me a good month or so to get it all figured out. 

What I try to balance in my day:
1. Prayer/ meditation time- morning, night and during runs
2. Family time- after work we go for a walk, play and eat dinner together 
3. Running- first thing in the morning
4. Teaching/ classroom work- set hours. We are required 7:30-3:40. I set 7-4:30 for myself. So much to do! 
5. Healthy eating and making a healthy dinner each night- planning!!
6. Housework- cleaning, laundry, dishes- 10-15 minutes each day really helps!
7. Strength exercises- during playtime
8. Time with friends- lunch dates, walks, play dates
9. Our relationship- set time for us a few nights
10. Blogging - I'll be happy if I can post 3-4 times a week

I've been pretty good about somethings but not so good about others.  I really want to work at more healthy food choices, family time, and strength.  Unfortunately with the start of school and the season Chris has been gone for 12 hours many days.  I know it gets better, but it's a busy time. Also strength workouts have been pretty non- existent this week. I need to start sneaking it in. 

As for food choices we did better this week. On Sunday we planned out our dinners and made our shopping list. Then we went grocery shopping together to get everything we needed. It worked out nicely. 

Our Menu for the week was:

1. Grilled chicken, quinoa, roasted broccoli and zucchini 
2. Our planned dinner was moved to Wednesday because our power was out.  We grabbed Jimmy Johns. 
3. Chicken, avocado paninis and roasted sweet potato wedges 
4. Tuna melts made with mashed avocado and Greek yogurt on Ezekiel sprouted whole grain bread
5. Chicken, cranberry, blue cheese salads

To work on family time we decided that we will take at least 3 walks a week together as a family. I love going for walks. I find we talk so much more than being in the house.  

I need to start doing abs, squats and lunges as I play with Cole. I have been saying I'll do it after he goes to bed but it never happens. 

I always feel so much better when things in my life are balanced.  I just have to remind myself it takes time and can't happen right away! 
As for now I'm going to play with my wild child! Have a great Saturday!!

How do you balance everything in your life? Any tricks you can share?

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Roll with the punches ( or your kids)

Well another busy week. I've been up early for my runs. I'll recap them this weekend. 

Our power went out early this week and It turns out it was only our house. So that means not a ComEd problem but an electrical problem.  We are working on getting things figured out. 

I'll be back to blogging soon!!! 

As for now I'll just keep rolling

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Don't Do What I Do

17 miles/ time ??

This morning started at 5:30 am.  I had my alarm set for 6 am, but Cole decided we should be up earlier. 

Chris had practice and left at 5 am. He was running 10 miles with his team. He is pretty speedy and averaged a 6:42 pace. 
( a picture from the spring)

I was thankful Cole woke me up earlier than I had planned, because it gave me a chance to eat breakfast. I had a whole grain waffle with peanut butter and chia seeds. 

Chris' sister ( a senior in high school and on his XC team) wanted to run 5 miles with me at 6:15. She is coming off an IT band injury and isn't ready for 10 miles yet. We ran 8:00-7:40 mile splits. 

(My mother-in-law is pretty amazing for waking up at 6am to watch Cole on her last day of summer break. She is a teacher too, but in a different district.) 

I kept running once we got back to my house. I had 12 more miles to do. Unfortunately, my garmin was not connect to the charger correctly last night and died at mile 7. Smart move #1. I was running a hilly route and told myself to slow my pace down to 8:30-8:45. Miles 6&7 were 8:35 but I have no idea what the pace was for the rest of my run.  

I died at mile 13. I needed water, but only had gels on me. I took a gel and cramped up so bad. The closest water fountain was 2 miles away. I had to walk a few times because I was feeling so sick and basically gave up mentally. Once I got to the water, I drank too much too fast and kept cramping up. I pushed through the last 2 miles, but walked 3 times for about. 15 seconds. I was so done and dreaming of Nuun. 

I got 17 in. However, .5 mile was probably walking. 

Cole was outside playing when I got home. I poured myself a huge glass of water, added Nuun, and went out to join him. He is so cute and stretches with me when I stretch. I stretched for a good 15-20 minutes and foam rolled too. 

Then we came in and made green protein smoothies. 

Of course we went out for our favorite meal. 
Chipolte! Even though it is a terrible picture it tasted great! 
Elmo was hungry too. 

Chris dropped us off at the top of the lane and took off.  Cole wasn't happy about it this time. We ran/ walked the .4 mile home. 

Things to do that I did
1. Eat before a long run. Something that you know your body can handle
2. Stretch and foam roll
3. Refuel within 30 minutes of your run, even if you aren't hungry 
4. Go out for ice cream! DQ mini blizzard! 

Things to do that I DIDN'T do
1. Drink water!!!!! Before during and after.  Wear a water belt or set water along your route. 
2. Run negative splits, not positive. I should have run with my sister-in-law at the end of the run, but she had places be and needed it done early. It really messed up the pace for the rest of my run. 
3. Make sure you know where the porta potties are. The 2 that I knew of on this route were gone! Fun:) 
4. Don't take gels without water. 
5. Make sure your garmin is connected to the charger!
6. Take an ice bath
7. Take a nap during the day, you deserve it! 

What advice do you have for long runs?!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Silent Saturday

Early Afternoon
Afternoon Visitors

Late Afternoon

Hope you are having a great weekend!