What’s been going on?

Today (Thursday) is the third I have had off this week. At the moment I’m writing this–> I’m wondering if school is going to be called off on Friday too. There is literally NOWHERE to park on any streets, especially in the inner city. Oh, Why is that? BECAUSE WE HAD 33 INCHES OF SNOW ON TUESDAY/WEDNESDAY!!! Lucky me, my county was the highest snowfall totals in the state, with my town being 13th in the state with the 33. (Auburn was the top with 36!)

Tuesday was a state of emergency here in MA and there was a travel from Monday night into early Wednesday morning. When I went to bed on Monday night, it was slightly snowing. I’m not gonna lie…a GIGANTIC part of me hoped that it was not going to be a real storm. School was cancelled by midday on Monday (i’ve never had school cancelled while we were STILL in the current school day). When I woke up Tuesday morning, the only thing I could see was WHITE out of my window. WHITE. I completely know what “white out” means now. I’ve never seen anything like it. And it did that ALL. DAY. LONG.

Some storm pics, in order:

Saturday (1/24) – I thought THAT was a big storm….Haha…silly Nicole. There is only about 2 inches of snow on that grill. (I really should’ve gone running outside that day…in hindsight this seems like a wise idea! ;) )
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Tuesday when I woke up….
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This is my husband doing the first round of snowblowing..I think it was about 10-11 am. Maybe earlier? We were up pretty early on Tuesday! Note the snowblower carving the path from the snow that is practically at his waist (my husband is 6feet tall!)
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And Wednesday when I woke up..WHERE oh WHERE is my GRILL? (oh, how I miss GRILLING!)
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SO MUCH SNOW. “Juno” wasn’t just any storm…it was incredibly cold outside (about 10 degrees) with wind chills that brought the temps down into the teens. Most snow storms mean the weather is warmer outside, but this was not the case! It was a crazy, crazy day and the only sounds I heard outside were the snow plows, snow blowers, and shovels! No kids playing giddily in the snow! Oh! The best part is that we are also getting MORE snow on Friday and Sunday/Monday….I’m going to be in school until July!!

Monday night, I did what any good little teacher would do who was giddy with the knowledge that she had a snow day tomorrow: I went to the store to stock up on the essentials:

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(don’t worry! I food shopped on Sunday!)

And I have to show you what my friend M brought me...man that girl can BAKE! Homemade peanut butter chocolate cake! The “slice” was probably half of the cake because it was as big as my head. For real! It was the most amazing & incredibly delicious thing!
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Uhmmm….What about the running?
Well. Now that you mention it, I did run this week. And on the treadmill that I dislike, to boot. Monday I did an easy 7 mile run. I did not swear at it, or want to break it. I tried to focus as hard as I could on the fact that I just wanted to “like” the treadmill. I kept hearing one of my peeps blog comments in my head:

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Yes, TheSuz is a wise, wise woman. (Check her out!)

Tuesday I took off from running. It wasn’t really my intention to take it off…but I typically take off the day following my recovery run…and we were pretty sure that any moment we were going to lose power. The thought of being on the treadmill, hauling ass, and suddenly it stops and I go flying didn’t really have a nice ring for me! Instead, I did a total body workout that left my legs and arms shaking afterwards. I have slacked over the last few weeks with my weight training. It’s really easy for me to fall off the wagon for this stuff! I know I need to keep doing it because it makes me stronger!

Wednesday. Day #2 off of school. I still didn’t want to go anywhere. I took my butt down to the dreadmill and MADE MYSELF do a tempo run.

Monday I realized that I am kind of re-training my body to be fast on this particular machine. The only thing I can compare it to is how a runner must feel after coming back from an injury, or a long break off from running–> that is how crazy hard and difficult it feels to run on this thing. I still don’t like it. But, my love of accomplishing HARD THINGS was winning out over my treadmill-angst/hate. And plus…I hadn’t done a workout since 1/17…so I was really overdue for one!!

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2 miles warmup 7.4
3 miles @ GMP 8.4
1 mile 7.5
2 miles @ 8.4
1 mile @ 7.6
2 miles @ 8.5
2 mile cool down

This workout run was much slower than my runs on my old treadmill. And I seem to be a little more sore!!! But what doesn’t kill me had better freaking make me stronger because I am now dead tired and All The Things on my body hurt. ALL.

Is it snowing where you are?
Any workouts that have REALLY HURT lately?

Laying it all Bare: You don’t look like a runner #3

(I’ve done a couple of posts before on this topic… Click these links to see #1 and #2 This particular post has been in the works for a while- its been stored in my brain while I mentally worked through how to write it. )

“You Don’t Look Like a Runner-You have boobs!”

Let’s start at the beginning:

I have big boobs.

YEAH. I said it. When I was a teenager? They were GIGANTIC. Of course, way back then, I was allergic to exercise. I was a cheerleader during my mid-teen years (that didn’t mean I liked to sweat though!), and if you would have told me that when i was a little older that I would LOVE when I am SO SWEATY that you could wring out my shirt- I would have told you that you were actually insane.

When I started running (at 18-19), boobs factored into the picture…sports bras (i originally bought COTTON because dri fit just wasn’t a thing yet!), running shirts, every small detail was a factor. My boobs were massive. I’m a small girl-my whole entire life I’ve been a small girl. I’m 5 feet, 1 inch. Having a rack wasn’t really the easiest thing for a small, petite gal!

Growing up, it seemed that the fact that i had a “large” chest dominated every decision I made. I was constantly aware of my body’s every move. To say the least, high school was uncomfortable for me. I actually got into fights with boys who teased me over the size of my breasts…I punched (at minimum) 4 different boys directly in the face for their cruel teasings. Looking back now, I know that I obviously wasn’t comfortable with my body. I hated any comment made or a stare that lasted a *little* too long.

It wasn’t until I became a runner that I became at home in my own skin. It’s funny and amazing what exercise can do for your confidence and your body. As I began to run more consistently, my body naturally lost weight and settled at a more comfortable place for me. My boobs were smaller! I became more self-confident with my strong body.

I always tell people that if you want to get to know yourself, find out what you’re capable of, and test your mind to the breaking point-Become a runner. Once I started running, I became a lot happier with my image and myself: running gave me a part of myself that I didn’t even know was missing-It was like a whole new side of me was created. Running became more than just an outlet. It became a passion. Through running, I learned that I am strong-I can run 20 miles a day like nobody’s business! Because of running, I learned that I should not care what anyone thinks of me-let stupid comments roll right off because they aren’t important in the long run. Much like yoga, does for those who practice it-running centers me and gives me a peace unlike anything else. A way to block the noise.

So…You’re a Runner?

The first few years after I started to run, when I would encounter someone I hadn’t seen since high school, the person would ask if I had a breast reduction. ( I don’t know why people ask such inappropriate questions?) I would delightfully tell them “no, I’m a runner.” 

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(No big deal…I made a collage of me, Shalane and Kara..)

But, No matter how many miles I log, I will always have (still a little larger) boobs. I can’t help but notice how the typical female runner is practically concave in the boob-age area. This is not me. It most likely will never be me. All these years of running and “being a runner with boobs” and I’m still sensitive about this topic. As much as I say or think “I don’t care” there are moments when it does bother me. Those moments mostly come when someone has discovered that I run. First, I will see the slight flick of their eyes over my mid-section and then suddenly, I am hearing my favorite phrase uttered to me:

“You don’t look like a runner.” 

Really, I can’t hear it enough. “Please, tell me again!” I would like to shout at them. And because people will always be people, I get some terrific questions thrown at me about being a runner with boobs(I always know when one is coming at me… I have 6th sense for dumb comments.) I will share a few of my favorites with you:

“I saw you running the other day…I said to my friend “Just look at her running WITH THOSE BOOBS.” (I thought to myself…Am I supposed to leave them at home when I go?)

“I just have to ask…How in the world do you run without your boobs knocking you in the face?” (they’re not that big, people can be just THAT obtuse)

“Do you like having big boobs and being a runner?” (This one just makes me want to say something so rude back!)

Isn’t it funny how you can forget some of the good stuff that people say to you but will never, ever forget a stupid offhand comment? I try to let it roll off of me. I remember the lessons the early “me” learned through millions of hours pounding the pavement. I tell myself these things so that I forget about any silly comments and remarks about something as trivial as “appearance.” I remind myself that:

*I am really strong.

*I am pretty fast!

*I should never care what someone else thinks or says about me. I care about being a good wife, a good person, a good friend. OH, and being a good runner.

Being a runner has nothing to do with appearance, as many of you might know. It has to do with the fact that you are out there RUNNING. Whether or not you look like the stick skinny runner is really and truly irrelevant. If you find yourself feeling judged for not looking the typical runner, I want you to tell yourself these things:

-That person is obviously not a runner. DUH. And you ARE.

-YOU are strong. Your legs can take you ALL OVER the place! Their legs probably don’t do that.

-When you get upset about something someone says to you, you’re allowing them the power to make you feel that way. Replace any negative things with the good things about YOU.

Runners come in all shapes and sizes. Your waistline, your shoe size, your bra cup size—> these are not important even one little bit. What IS important is that you are out there, RUNNING! So the next time somebody tells YOU that you don’t look like a runner…invite them along for your next run. That’ll teach them!

Have you ever encountered a “You Don’t Look Like a Runner” Moment? What’d ya do?

Running Funks, and Mileage for the week!

These pics pretty much sum up my Saturday…
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…In a nutshell…I ate a lot of homemade toffee, drank wine, read a book, watched it snow!

That is right, there was NO RUNNING on Saturday.…It was a blizzard here! I had a plan to get to the gym early and use their treadmills…But when I woke up at 7:00..everything was already completely covered in snow! SO. I was going to use my treadmill..8am, 9am, 10, 11, 12pm….still didn’t get on. 1pm, 2, 3…Aaaaand then i finally showered at 5. I couldn’t even bring myself to do an easy run! I was SO LAZY! My husband actually commented how he didn’t know he married a 60 year old lady who didn’t want to go out of the house! THAT comment was responsible for the shower…But I STILL was lazy! I read a whole book too. If anyone is looking for an AWESOME book with “WOW i didn’t see that coming!” twists and turns, than you should read “Big Little Lies” by Liane Moriarty.

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This book was so so so good, I couldn’t even be mad/sorry that I skipped a run! Liane Moriarty also writes “What Alice Forgot”….and that is another terrific story!

I took both FRIDAY AND SATURDAY off from running…. I don’t even KNOW who I am! I figured that with 2 days off would mean that I would have a most excellent long run on Sunday. Why not? My legs were well rested and i slept like a baby for two nights in a row? I also did NO hard workout last week.. NO tempos, NO speedwork, NADA.

Sunday’s run was a little bit slushy, and since I had to stay on main roads due to Saturday’s snow storm, I did the same hilly route I did the week prior. It’s basically all main roads that are really wide, so they were pretty well plowed. I physically did pretty well on this run (it’s nearly all uphill), but I didn’t feel like I did. All of me was sore- my legs, my core, EVERYTHING. This has happened to me before-two days off sometimes kills my mojo. Ironically, I felt MUCH better on last week’s twin run of this route- and i had done a 15 mile tempo less than 24 hours before…. SO. It’s weird. But…this week really felt like an “off” week for running. I only ran 42 miles, did no “Workouts” and was kind of angry at running/winter/the new treadmill i hate.
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In other running related randomness-I haven’t run on my treadmill since Thursday…I’m going to give it a couple more tries and if it still makes me want to light it on fire/blow it up/bang it with a bat—It is going back. I really have no use for an expensive machine that I will NEVER use, you know what I mean? It’s kind of like buying a car if you don’t drive…pointless and unnecessary!

Mileage recap for the week:

Monday-7 mile recovery run

Wednesday-8 miles treadmill

Thursday-9 miles-5 outside, 4 on the treadmill

Sunday-18 miles

Total: 42 miles, 8:10 avg pace

Alot of my “running funk” this week is obviously due to having crappy runs on a treadmill i dislike, and, NOT wanting to run because I felt like it would be crappy due to (them) being run on the treadmill I dislike. (Does that sentence even make sense? Let’s pretend it does, mmmkay? THANKS!) I really would have loved to hit it and hit it hard like usual on my new machine, but we just aren’t jiving right now! I would have gladly moved all of my runs outside, however, it’s been so cold or so snowy or so icy Every. Single. Day. During the winter, I’m limited on the times I can run outside so, really, being limited to using a machine I don’t like—why wouldn’t I be bummed out? I realized something this week that I’ve never realized about myself before: sometimes during the winter months, I feel “trapped” by the fact that I have to use a treadmill. I can’t run anywhere else because its either too dangerous to be on the roads, or, a flippin crazy idea to want to leave the house because it’s a blizzard/ice storm/negative beyond belief temps outside.

I know this will obviously get better, but during the month of January/February-feeling this way kills me. A lot of times, when I actually do get outside for a run, I feel like my everyday paranoia’s are magnified and I’m hyper aware of the entire environment. Lack of sidewalks or unplowed sidewalks and especially the nice safe areas to the left of the white lines….when these things go “missing” I get nervous. For example, If you have driven by me, and thought “Wow, did she just glare at me?” The answer is most DEFINITELY “YES, yes, that runner girl DID just give you The Death Stare because you were driving WAY too close to her, so MOVE over!” It’s exhausting to be so overly cautious and nervous! I obviously keep going outside though (when I can) because:

a- It’s good for my body..the roads and the feeling of them under my feet-worth the crazyness I put my brain through… and the number of glares or middle fingers therefore given to oncoming vehicles. #imnotevensorrybecauseyouredrivingwaytooclose #pleaseputdownyourphone

b-because Vitamin D is good for my soul. Even if it is windy and cold, I’m still happy when its “a bright, bright, bright sunshine-y dayyy”

c-I never want my body to get unaccustomed to the feeling of being outside- that is never a good idea for someone who likes to race. Given the choice between a treadmill run vs an outdoor (weather cooperating) run-I will always take the outdoor one. Since winter isn’t the greatest ’round here, I sometimes have to MAKE myself go outside when it’s really cold because come race day, my body/brain won’t be all “Whaaat is going ON here? What are we doing? I’m confused.”

d-Because I’ve built up quite the collection of winter clothing throughout the years…and DAMMIT, i’m going to use it!

No funk lasts forever! And you know what else? I keep reminding myself of this little fun factoid whenever I/we have bad running week(s): they are automatically followed with a good one. So there is THAT-and i plan to look forward to some good runs that will be coming my way!

FOUR weeks until my next Marathon!!! (Hyannis!)

How do you solve a running funk?

Toffee- LOVE IT, HATE IT, Or, COULD CARE LESS?? Love it.

It’s been a strange week.

I really wish I had more to write this week along the positive side…but I’m kind of grumpy and in a little funk! Work has been insane this week! Today(Friday) is the last day of the first semester, and therefore that means I get all new students next week. To say I’m bummed is a GIANT understatement because I absolutely love my students! I know I will most likely get a whole bunch of new kids for that I will once again love, but the semester swap still takes a lot out of me!

I would put this this week in the category of “running fails.” I’m really motivated to run, but, since it’s wintertime-and cold-and dark….I’ve spent the majority of the time on the treadmill.

Ah, yes, the treadmill. Yes, last we left, I had just received my new beauty. So. About that new purchase???

I HATE IT.

I don’t like the word hate…it’s SO overwhelmingly negative and just…mean. But, now that I’ve told you my feelings on the word “hate” … I need to say to you again what I think about my new treadmill..

I HATE MY NEW TREADMILL. SO MUCH.

I’ve now given it a few shots. It’s just not any fun. It’s literally harder than concrete is, and I’m not adjusting easily. I feel like it’s not level and that I’m instead running uphill. (my husband tested the levels, it’s actually fine, it’s just me who is off!)My whole body feels like it’s a brand new runner all over again. As you can imagine…I am not exactly thrilled by this.

Thursday was kind of nice out when I got home (30 degrees!) so I drove by my track on my way home from work. I was thrilled to see it mostly clear! So I ate a snack, jogged there from home, and was fully ready for a difficult workout of 800s!

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at least it was a pretty sunset!

I quickly realized that there was still a bit of ice on the track and decided to play it safe and stay within the outer lane. Some spots had small ice patches and required fancy footing! But the weird part was that there were entire parts of the lanes covered in dog poop turds. So disgusting. Two slow repeats later, I was too grossed out and cold, so I headed back home and hopped on my dreadmill….again…Blaaaaaaaaa.

today I’m planning to hit a local gym after work in hopes that I like their treadmills (desperate measures anyone?! No judging, please!). My SIL& my friend M both belong here and swear they like them. Normally I wouldn’t care about weekend running and my treadmill because I typically would be running outside both days anyway. However. It’s supposed to blizzard Saturday into Sunday so that means I’m stuck doing my long run on a treadmill that I want to beat with a crowbar(that vision gives me immense joy!). Sooo. I’m going to try out a gym treadmill and see if my feet/legs/body likes it! I am so productive that I packed my gym bag on Thursday night!

So please, humor me and tell me something funny, awesome, cynical, or anything that makes you crabby. Ooooh yes, especially things that make you crabby this week! #miserylovescompany

oh! And happy Friday!!

Adaption

Happy hump day!!! It feels weird that it’s already Wednesday! Tuesday was a blur of school things that I probably couldn’t answer questions on even if I was being tortured with the threat of NO RUNNING FOREVER.

On an incredibly random and slightly strange note… this made me crack up laughing.. Ryan Gosling running meme’s are kind of a thing between me and a couple of my non-running girlfriends…this made me laugh like crazy at 5 am on Tuesday morning…so I hope you can read some of these and find it as silly as me!

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Seriously, I die… for the full list of hilarious Ryan Gosling running meme’s, go here!

So my new treadmill came on Monday. It’s so pretty. And big. And shiny. And new.

And I haven’t used it yet.

It was realllllly nice out on Monday…43! Holy heat wave! So I ran outside because, hey, why not? I had my last treadmill for nine years, I have plenty of time to get to know this one, right?

Tuesday I tried it. well. Actually, that is a lie. I tried to try it. I swore at it. I yelled. I couldn’t figure out how to use it. URGHHHHHHH. I wanted to call Sears and ask them could you please send back my old one?? But that is silly.

When I finally figured it out, the running did not come naturally. It hurt. It felt faster even on a slower (for me) speed. It was weird. I hated it. My husband said “I hate when you get new stuff. You get SO excited for it, but then your natural ability to repel technology and learn how to use it shines through and you get too mad to enjoy it.” Don’t tell him I said this, but…He is right…I really dislike learning new technology. I repel it, want to break it, throw it, dismantle it….I swear.., it doesn’t come naturally.

I didn’t push through the workout and gave up within .26 miles.. Honestly, I was really tired on Tuesday. A very long work day and 40 miles in three days? Yup, I would say that calls for a break. I’ll pick it up where I left off today. And I’m pretty sure my temper tantrum will be gone by the time I use it again…

Just like a new pair of shoes, or a change in the weather, I know that any new thing in my running routine takes me time to adjust. Learning something new takes time. Sure it’s frustrating at first, but suddenly, I begin to adapt. I may not like it now, but I bet within a week or two I will be comfortable on my new “beast.” I know that it will take time for the learning and adjusting to happen. I guess it’s a new challenge for me to face?

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When was your last running adaption?

Ever try something new you hated at first and grew to love?
My iPhone, my iPad…pretty much anything that requires a plug has left me with a love/hate relationship at first!

01.12.15 – 1.18.15 :Mileage Recap!!!

Hi Friends! I hope everybody had a great weekend! This one is a 3 day-er and I love long weekends! And today is even better because my treadmill comes this morning! I can not even WAIT for it to arrive! So if you need me this week I think it’s safe to say that is where I will be!

Mileage Recap: 

Monday-Off

Tuesday:8 easy miles-59:05 (7:23 avg pace)

Wednesday: 9 Miles 1:09:09. (7:41 avg pace) Failed track attempt!

Thursday: 7 easy hilly miles-1:02:55. I took it REALLY easy and slow for this run because it was snowing like crazy! I wore my YakTrax and a pair of shoes that were REALLY old. I could tell how old they were because my ankles always feel “achy” when I’m running in sneakers that are past their expiration dates!

Friday: OFF!

Saturday: I really had psyched myself up for this run. I knew I had to start early because I had early afternoon plans, so there was no delaying: i had to get on the road early, or not at all. I laid ALL my clothes out-the 3 layers for top and bottom-BUT I woke up Saturday morning and could not get myself excited at running in the negative temps. UGH. I don’t like waiting until Sunday’s to do my long run (I hate taking more time away from a day with the family) and sometimes, if i procrastinate until Suday, I wind up NOT doing it at all. My husband (so nice!) told me it was okay to swap my long run day around because it would 35 and not -9 outside! So I hit the treadmill for my tempo run instead (I was originally going to do it on Sunday). I am SO proud of this run-even though the paces were hard, it gave me a lot of confidence to hit these fast paces. I felt really strong the whole time and I was able to continue to pick up the pace for the entire workout. Honestly, if I had been running outside i felt like i COULD have hit all of these paces. It felt really good.

2 mile w/u @ 8:00-7:54 pace

4 miles @ 6:48 pace

2 miles @ 6:44 pace

2 miles @ 6:36

1 mile @ 6:27

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And then, after I had already logged the 13 miles in my app, I realized i should probably do a cooldown so I followed up the tempo with 2 more miles.  15 miles total-1:43:55, 6:55 avg pace.

Sunday:
2015/01/img_4700.jpgI did my long run! I was a little sore from my tempo run but i was so happy that it was 35 outside! It felt like a freaking heat wave! After my hilly run on Thursday, I had made the decision to do a long chock full of hills. My next marathon is NOT hilly, but Boston is. Even if your race is totally flat, it is a great idea to still keep running hills-they only make you stronger and feel more bad ass when you have finally climbed to the top! I love the route I did. It’s one that my running partner and I had made once on the fly. We basically took all the hills we don’t like and smushed them together into one run. My average pace was 8:28 for the 18 miles. I was really happy with this! Even though I was slower than I was last week, honestly, with legs that had done a tempo run just the day before, and on a route full of hills…I’m glad this pace still felt easy and that my legs cooperated nicely. I also feel like I could go into full on beast-mode for this route when my legs are all rested! I also wore my new Ghost 7’s that I had saved specifically for motivation for this run. There’s nothing like a fresh pair of kicks, am I right?? 

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57 miles for the week, 7:50 avg pace

Saturday was such a fun day! I got to hang out and celebrate a special bride to be with a whole bunch of my girlfriends! It was one of the most beautiful showers I’ve ever been to…and they had a dessert bar! I did not take any pictures, but take my word for it: it was amazing!! Any time mimosas, desserts, and bff’s are involved, it’s a good time!!

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I hope your weekend was amazing! Tell me something fun that you did!

The best things, new things and things in general

How random is that title? Let’s take a second to all acknowledge THAT.

Ok, Moving on…what a GREAT week it’s been! Let’s back wayyyy up to Monday, shall we???

Monday I got home from work and the husband informed me that my poor treadmill is worse off than I thought it was….I’ve known since last winter (2014) that I needed to replace the belt in it..I was hoping to get away with it through this whole winter and revisit it during the spring. I bought my ‘mill in 2006, brand new. I’ve also had to replace the belt and the motor one time each-both in 2010- so i already knew that I would rather buy a new treadmill than continue to repair my existing one. (to anyone wondering, it’s a Horizon rct 7.6 treadmill)

I run about 200-250 miles per a month. During the winter months, a lot of those miles are done on said treadmill. (I don’t have a gym membership-this is the only one I use) My husband and I figured out that I use the treadmill pretty consistently throughout the months of November-March. Let’s say it’s 200 miles a month (some runs are outside!) In the nine years of owning this treadmill, I’ve probably run about 8500-9000 miles on it. (I’m not including 2015 cause it just started) that’s a lot of mileage on one little treadmill!

So back to how my ‘mill is worse off than I thought–> When I did my 13 mile portion of my long run on it last week–> I noticed that it felt “springy” but didn’t really give it a
Second thought. Honestly, if I’m being honest….i was delighted at the springy-ness since I had just come home from a brutally cold run on cold, frigid- definitely UN-Springy pavement. The treadmill felt heavenly.

But, My observant husband happened to be working out in our basement and realized that the deck of the treadmill is curving in the middle…and about to break in half! He is the best because i would have kept running on it, ignorant, and would have ended up falling through and hurting myself! (Pause here while you think on this image, mmmkay?) I literally carved a hole in my treadmill in “my spot” that I run on! It’s actually kind of funny that little me was able to do that! But I guess after 8500ish miles that it kind of makes sense!!!

On a whim we wound up at Sears (where I also got my first treadmill) and I immediately spotted the “dream treadmill.” I probably looked around at the other treadmills for ten one millisecond before deciding, in my head, that i wanted The Dream (AKA-Nordic Track 7700) It had a TV, a huge deck, wifi, ifit, inclines up to 15, and DECLINES to -3 (I’ve never seen a decline before on a treadmill!). It uses Google Maps and works with IFIT to display courses on the TV for you so you can plug in addresses and run on ANY COURSE YOU WANT TO while looking at it on the TV. How is THAT for being realistic? I’m BEYOND excited and my new friend arrives on Monday! ( So if you are looking for me after that…you pretty much already know where I will be) I promise that once I start running on and get used to it, I will do a review on it!
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instant best friends!

The best thing happened on Wednesday night! I had dinner with my running partner. I used to mention her a TON on this little piece of the www but lately it probably seems like she has fallen off of the planet! (she has not!) It was amazing to catch up and i have missed her TONS. I am a bad blogger who took not even ONE picture!

I do have this picture for you though…
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Wednesday, I ran on my mill for 3 miles and suddenly decided I could not stay on it for ONE more second., (I ran on the end of it and not in “my spot” so as to try not to break it in half) Instead, I decided to brave the elements and hit the track. 1 1/2 miles later, I arrived at my track to find that IT WAS COVERED IN ICE. I was so sad/disappointed. BLA. Winter, I hate you, DIE. It looks like I will be doing some 800s on the new treadmill til spring instead of on the track!

Thursday was slightly warm with a balmy 27 degrees. I couldn’t resist the warm (haha) temps so i headed outside for my run. About 3 miles in, it really started to snow. I didn’t even care because it was one of those beautiful, gentle snowfalls. Sure, it made it hard to see, but overall it was SO pretty i didn’t even care!

Snow selfie!

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Happy Friday everybody! My weekend of running is going to consist of a bad ass tempo and a long run. I am disclosing this on the blog because if they DONT happen– I will be sad that I have to whine to you all about WHY i Didn’t follow through with my running plans!

And now this is where i leave you! Tell me one of you favorite things that is happening this weekend!
-We are having dinner with M and Mr M tonight! Two dinners with friends this week–It doesn’t get any better than THAT! :) AND i have a fun Bridal Shower on Saturday morning that I’m excited about! AND Sunday the Pats are playing!

Not letting the “long run” take over my life

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SIL and I were talking on Saturday night about our mutual long runs-SIL ran 12, I ran 20. I grilled her for EVERY single detail. It’s been a long time since I’ve been a new runner hitting those new distances, and hearing how she feels about each and every run is one of my favorite things. I literally asked her 85 questions because i was so curious!

SIL did her long run with her team- The Dana Farber runners. Next week she starts training along the actual Boston course!! I’m really excited for her! When i think back to my first marathons, I really wish that i had done the long runs with my own team-I think its a fantastic way to stay motivated and make new running friends! (When I started running for my Children’s Hospital team, i had to work every Saturday…which was when they did their long runs, so i used to do mine on Sundays. )

Anyway, we obviously were talking about our different sore muscles, foam rolling, stretching, etc. We talked about how she felt a lot better and more confident on this team run than she did on her first. She really is learning mind over matter-it’s SO exciting to hear about all of her advancements! She also said how she thinks of her own 20 miler (Which won’t be until March) and the distance just seems SO far compared to what she is running now.

One thing I’ve learned in all of my years of running is not to let the long run take over my life/weekend. If you let it rule you-it will. I’ve learned the balance between handling the long run and life. Some days, its a fine line between “I’m exhausted” and “Yeah, I can push myself some more today.”

OF COURSE I am sore when I’m done my long run. I an remember, quite a few years ago, when i would do my longer – long runs (like 17-20 miles) and I wouldn’t make plans the rest of the day. I would mostly just veg out on the couch. You know the drill..finish run..shower…put on clothes…eat all the food…collapse on couch….and stay there til bed! 

THAT gets old. FAST. And that makes life BORING! Now, i LOVE running, but i love “LIFE” just as much. I don’t care HOW tired I am–> I do not let a long run rule my life. When we threw our Christmas party a few weeks ago, I did my long run that morning. Yesterday, I did a long run before my family came over. There were times over this past summer where I ran a half marathon race and then went about my day like nothing had happened that morning! I went to baby showers, weddings, birthday parties..all post long run. Its kind of not even a “big deal” to my friends anymore. They all just think I’m a weirdo it’s funny and are thoughtful in asking “Did you run today? And how many? 20?” And then they laugh, and move on. My BFF likes to tell people how i ran 13 on my wedding day (i did! I would’ve been a bundle of nerves had I not!)

I’m not telling you all that so you think I’m a bad ass because I’m really not. I’m telling you this because I know what its like…to just want to sleep or sit in a hot tub until tomorrow and not really do anything at all. I made the decision not to let myself be “too tired for fun” after a long run. You just can’t! If you find yourself too exhausted to move, week after week, then its time to reevaluate something in your plan, or your running! I completely understand being “tired” but being “too tired to move or do things” every week isn’t healthy either. Running and life are a balance act. One that you have to work at..but you shouldn’t let “running” get in the way of things like spending time with your family, or missing out on something really awesome.
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SIL is doing fantastic at the balancing thing. She is a mom/wife/teacher/photography genius—> so she kind of already had a pretty sweet juggling routine going on before she added “marathoner in training” to that list. She’s great at taking her kiddos places on weekends, even with those tired legs, because she doesn’t want to miss “the moments” that life presents.

These are my tips for making the rest of your day, post- long run a little bit easier:

-Have a plan for your long run! Make it a routine. Knowing that i want to be done my run before my husband gets home from work motivates me to get going early in the day!

-Have food ready for you when you get home. I can’t cook for myself immediately following a long run..I’m wayy too HANGRY. So i usually think about what I’m going to have immediately after, and have it ready. Sometimes its leftovers from the night before, sometimes its soup from my daddio…i just know that i will *NEED* food, and having a post run food plan makes me and my belly so happy!

-Get out cha compression socks. Wear them. it is winter time-NOBODY WILL KNOW they are on under your clothes because lets be serious, you need 8 layers to be outside functioning anyway!!

-If your thing is an epsom salt bath, or an ice bath…get your ice BEFORE you run. Nobody wants to go to the store after finishing a long run!

-Do a little stretching IMMEDIATELY after finishing while your muscles are still loose and warm. This helps sooooo much. And, added bonus: when you are in the shower and drop the soap..you will actually be ABLE to bend over and pick it up.

-this is a night before the long run tip, but make sure your toenails are clipped. Nobody likes having, or even SEEING a black toe. Nobody.

I hope these tips help you out!

What’s your post long run routine?

Have you ever felt like the long run was taking over your whole day?

Mileage, long runs, and the weekend

What a weird week weather-wise. It felt colder than I can remember it ever being! And it was SO windy…urghhhh…..I hate wind….

Monday-8 miles, 1:00:11, 7:31 pace. Most of this run was at a 7:49 pace, but the last few miles I upped it to be faster miles.

Tuesday-Off. I did strength videos with weights at home for a workout- legs, arms, back, abs…it was awesome and so exhausting. I love the different kids of sore I am after doing a weight workout!

Wednesday-8 miles. 1:00:02. avg 7:30 pace. This was pretty much the same as Monday’s workout.

Thursday-10 mile tempo, 7:06 avg pace

Friday-100% off!

Saturday- 20 miles. I hated my long run on Saturday.. Ughhhh. It was so cold and i was SUPER angry at WINTER. It is pretty silly to be mad at things that you cannot control..especially cold weather in January in New England. But OH WELL i was still mad. I need July. And August. And June and May…those months are just all so lovely! I started off the run NOT feeling good. My legs were heavy, slow, and didn’t want to move. I wore more layers than i EVER have for a cold weather run.
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(It felt like 3 degrees and not at all like 17. Not that 17 is warm…but I would have taken a “real feel” of 17 degrees over 3. )

At mile 3, i went to sip my Camelbak and it was already solid and the water didn’t want to come out of the hose. So stupid. At mile 5 i realized i couldn’t take 20 outside, i just couldn’t. I ended up doing 7 outside, and 13 inside on my treadmill. My face was wind burned when i came in, I’ve never seen it so raw from a run before!

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My sis posted this on her Facebook and i could not agree MORE because my face hurt the whole time i was outside. THE WHOLE TIME!!!!!

It killed me to hop on the treadmill–> the same thing I had been on for the entire week–but i couldn’t take being outside another step. I hopped on the treadmill, nearly cried 17 fifty times…and banged it out. I ended up simulating the same run I would have done outside, and even took my gel’s & drank my water (I wore my Camelbak even on the mill-this was the 1st time doing this) at the same exact time. This run was REALLY mind over matter.

A lot of being a runner in marathon training is mind over matter. I DID NOT WANT to run 13 miles inside on my treadmill, but i did it anyway. I wanted to do a bad ass awesome long run outside like i have been doing every week for all of the cold months we have had so far, but sometimes you’ve gotta just call it like you see it: I saw a DUMB winter day that was only going to BEAT ME UP so the treadmill won. BLAAAA. YES- Running in winter makes you stronger for spring, builds your confidence, and makes you an all around better runner but you know what else? RUNNING IN THE WINTER SUCKS AND SOMETIMES I JUST DON’T WANT TO DO IT! Phew… now i feel better, thanks for letting me get that offa my chest, friends!

I kept tricking my brain by saying “Okay, at mile x you can stop.” and then i WOULDN’T stop and i would re-trick my mind until the next mile. Those 13miles took me the same amount of time as if I Would have done them outside, but they sure as hell felt LONGER. YES, i could have done a shorter run (it occurred to me about 87,000 times to change my run to a shorter distance) but i had already had it in my mind to do the 20 so i did it. And swore like a sailor (in my head and out loud!) while doing it.

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It felt like a “bad run” but really, it wasn’t. I got down into the 2:40 range which is something I’ve been aiming to do for SO LONG!!! I simulated a fast-finish long run just like I try to do outside. These types of runs push my legs to go faster when they are tired, and that REALLY helps on marathon day!!

Sunday- recovery run, 7 miles in 58:22 @ 8:20 avg pace. This run felt SO relaxing and lovely. I did a really hilly route and there was little to no wind…it was perfect…and not too cold!

53 miles for the week, 7:44 avg pace.

Post run on Saturday was an awesome family fun day with SIL/BIL and the kiddos! SOO much Fun! SIL ran 12 on Saturday so there was a whole lot of run talk going on! (the guys just loooooved that!)
And wine. Yes, yes, delicious wine!

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Me and SIL! I don’t LOVE this picture (my hair just looks weird!) but everybody likes pictures so here you go, my friends!

I couldn’t resist a delicious, piping hot meal so it was homemade chicken pot pie again, for the win!

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And THAT is where I leave you today! It’s 7:50 EST and I’ve been writing this post for an hour as i drift in and out of sleep! Time for bed!!!

What was your favorite run of the week?
My tempo run, hands down!

Does anybody count chicken pot pie as one of their favorite comfort foods?
Yes, yes and YES.

Friday Randomness and Did you hear the good news??

On Wednesday night, I got the call that school was clooooosed for Thursday! SNOW DAY!!! SNOW DAY!!! But it was so weird because…there is no snow. It was cancelled due to sub zero temps! How crazy is THAT?
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The temps when I woke up….anybody feel like going for a run??

*SO my Thursday basically consisted of me sitting around, and staying warm under a big blankie. I was sooo lazy and unmotivated! I finally hopped on the treadmill around 3 for a tempo workout.
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2 mile warmup @7.5 (8min/mile)
4 miles @ 8.4 (7:09)
2 miles @ 9.0
2 miles @ 8.4
10 total for 1:10:56, 7:06 

Even though i had started off being really unmotivated for this workout, I ended up pushing through it. It was my 3rd day this week on the treadmill! Sometimes the same-ness of the treadmill REALLY messes with me and gets me down. I wanted to stop pretty much immediately. All of a sudden, it hit me that at this time last year- I couldn’t hold the paces i held on Thursdays run. Well, I could probably hold them-but not for as long as I did. I remember when 8.8 or 9.0 felt crazy difficult to do, even for about a half a mile. Thursday i held a strong pace for 6 miles. Progress is fun!

*My parents got me a juicer for Christmas and i’m becoming obsessed with it. Thursday morning I made orange/blackberry/blueberry juice… I am loving mixing fruits together. its amazing how good fresh juice tastes. I LOVE juice and the fact that I now can drink 100% healthy juice makes me so happy!
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Ok, so, did you hear the good news? My SIL posted this on my facebook and it brought tears to my eyes. A year later, and i can’t get enough of all things Meb. (I still want to be his best friend) His heart and his power of persistence is incredible. And that Shalane? MAN, she is COOL. She really WILL be back in Boston til she wins! I hope this is her year!! Last year, i didn’t start the marathon until VERY late- I think it was almost 12 by the time my wave was off. My team gets to wait in a heated Masonic Hall and they always have the TV on–I watched the first half of the race- Shalane was leading still by the time I was lining up. She was so inspirational, and even though i had a CRAPTASTIC run that day-i kept thinking of her during my run. Someday, i want to be in the Team America lineup!

Happy weekend! What’s your long run this weekend?
Anybody have a juicer that they love?