The top questions I’ve been asked about BBG

I’m six weeks into the 12 week BBG program and I’ve gotten a ton of questions via email, in person, and on my Instagram about BBG. I decided to do a post to address all the questions and hopefully help everyone understand it a little more. 

1. What is BBG? “BBG” stands for “Bikini Body Guides.” It’s a 12 week downloadable PDF guidebook program designed by Kayla Itsines and her partner, Tobias Pierce. You work out for 3 days a week for 28 minutes. There are 2 circuits per each workout and you repeat each 7 minute circuit twice -this makes up the 28 minutes. It’s an ass kicking workout. The moves are easy-lunges, burpees, tricep dips, push ups,to name a few. It’s the combinations that are killer.

2. What do you do in the workout and how much does it cost? The best description that I’ve found on what BBG actually entails was sent to me from a friend from the website “Well and Good”:

The method is alarmingly simple (and surprisingly effective—I can personally vouch). The $69.95 PDF contains twelve weeks of workouts, with three days that includes two series of just four exercises that you complete in seven-minute circuits, twice. It totals 28 minutes of “high intensity, plyometric, resistance jump training,” according to Itsines.

3.) Did you have to buy a lot of equipment? I didn’t buy a single solitary thing for this workout besides the actual guide book. She suggests you buy a foam roller, jump rope, yoga mat, 2 workout benches, and weights. I already have 5, 10, 12, and 20 pound weights at my house. Some of the exercises have you squating on top of the two weight benches- For this, you can stand on two chairs. A lot of the ab exercises have you holding onto the back of the weight bench-I lay down on the floor and hold on to a molding at the base of a doorframe. For the “step up” leg activities, I use actual stairs. You can get pretty creative with things in your own home, trust me. A lot of the activities have you holding a bosu ball. I use a weight in place of that.

Some suggestions:
-you will benefit a lot more from these workouts if you use weights. If you don’t have weights, I would purchase two sets. Everyone is different-I use the 10 and the 12’s, but maybe you would be more comfortable with 5 and 10. If you are brand new to working out or weights, err on the cautious side and go lower- You can always buy higher weights later.

-Get a yoga mat. You’ll be sweaty and they’re easy to clean.

3.) Do I need to have a gym membership? Nope. See above. I’m sure you could do all of the exercises in a gym, but i like to limit myself in looking like an ass in public ( i save that for 5k races): I am seriously dripping with sweat and cursing and sometimes almost falling over with exhaustion. I like the privacy of my own home for that!

4.) Do you like BBG? I freaking LOVE it. I have seriously never been stronger or sore-er in my entire life.

5.) Do you think it’s making you faster? I get asked that all the time and that’s tricky. I do a whole heck of a lot of speedwork so that contributes. In my opinion, the extra strength training is not hurting!

6.) What about the jump rope? Do you use it? Ok NOBODY asks me that but i have to put it in here that I have STOPPED trying to JUMP ROPE. I am SO BAD AT IT and i have ZERO desire to improve my jump roping skills. I jump rope in place. I think if you are the kind of coordinated person who can actually jump rope and not trip and fall–that is excellent and you may see even more results than I am. I will tell you that if there was a contest for world’s best jump roper in placer- I would win. #canttouchthis. So i wanted to include the above fun fact in here for all of you uncoordinated people clumsy like me to tell you that I’m seeing results with my pretend jump roping!

7.) How did you save the PDF? Did you print it out? When you buy the guide, you have 24 hours to download & save it. I saved it to my laptop and my Ipad. I know girls who have saved it to their phone’s, but I don’t have enough room on mine. I also didn’t print it out because that would be a huge waste of paper. It’s really easy to use on any device.

8.) What do you use for a timer? The IPhone has a built in timer so that’s what I use!

9.) Are you being paid to do this workout?  I FREAKING WISH. I bought it with my own hard earned money and I’m not being sponsored. Just a girl who wants to get Strong. :)  I figure that by now, SOMEONE must be wondering that little fun fact so I wanted to disclose it to you.

10.) Did you buy the nutrition guide? No I didn’t. I eat really healthy as it is, and I’m pretty good at making wise choices for what I put into my body.

I want to also touch on a few points that I think are really important:

-I have said before that I didn’t buy this workout to lose weight, and I swear I mean that. As any chick in her 30’s will tell you: cardio just doesn’t cut you up and make you defined the same way it did for your body in your 20’s. Sad, but true. BBG is making me the best version of ME. Everyone’s results are different, and No two people will have the same things happen for their bodies.

-I wanted a strength workout that was easy to follow. One that I could do whenever I want to, whether that meant M/W/F at 5:00 am or T/TH/F at 8:00 pm. The beauty of it is that you can do it whenever YOU want to do it.  That’s pretty freaking priceless.

-When you see the transformations on IG that Kayla posts, you might think that it’s really an image based program with millions of girls taking selfies of themselves as they continue to become obsessed with their own image. However, if you take the time to read some of the captions on the pictures: You’ll see that it’s so much more than that. It’s “finding your strong” and being more comfortable and happy with who you are. Kayla is constantly addressing this in all of her transformation posts. She wants her workouts to empower you and make you happy with YOU. That was another reason I chose it.

-The online empowerment on Instagram for BBG is HUGE. If you already have it and follow Kayla or any BBG girl- you know what I mean. They are so encouraging and helpful. I think that a workout that empowers women and brings out the best in everyone is pretty great. Women all over the world are paying one another some pretty high compliments-I think that is fantastic!

For more info on BBG, you can go Here. You can also download a free week and sample it out!  

Any questions that I did not address, PLEASE ask away in the comments so I can answer away! 

Training Week July 13-19th, BBG Week 5!

If I was to sum up this week with one word, that word would be “sore.” I kicked my trash all day, every day!
Monday-6.44 miles, 8:10 avg pace

Tuesday- BBG Week 5, Legs & Cardio. 8 mile tempo run.

Wednesday-AM: 7 easy miles-super hot, super hilly, wanted to jump in the pool I don’t have (I NEED A POOL!)
PM: 2 untimed miles at the track for Summer Fun Run!

Thursday- AM: BBG: Arms/Abs. OWWWWWW.
PM: 4 mile warmup, 3 miles of 400s (6x400s) at the track club!
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These splits were awesome-I’m telling you: Track work has made a huge difference in my running, HUGE.

Friday-BBG Week 5, Full Body. No running!!!

Saturday-19 miles, 8:36 avg pace. I was really, truly, 100% not in the mood to run on Saturday. I was physically dragging myself out of bed and could have slept all day (even though I had slept 11 hours already!) Thank you, to YOU, “lady troubles” for dragging me down on this long run! My legs felt like concrete blocks and my abs/arms/even my toes were sore. (BBG was killer this week!)
I knew that if I didn’t hit the roads on Saturday, I would have been forced to run on a 93 degree day on Sunday..So….sometimes, you’ve just got to suck it up, buttercup! I did my long run along the course for my next marathon: The Baystate Marathon! It was awesome to have a change of scenery from my typical long run routes, and, even though my body was feeling really sluggish-the miles at least passed by very quickly!
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Sunday:7 miles. I really didn’t want to run on Sunday and procrastinated a LOT. It was so hot and humid that I opted for the dreadmill. (that is how you KNOW it is hot: If i’m choosing the treadmill over pavement!!) I just wanted to get this run DONE so I opted for some faster miles. 51:51 for 7 miles, 7:24 avg pace. I did the last 2 at a 6:54/6:40. This past winter, I was training for Boston and a 6:40/6:45 mile on my treadmill made me want to cry and I would constantly express my frustrations swear at how damn difficult that pace felt. On Sunday-> It felt pretty dang doable and I like that! Progress is my favorite!!

BBG Thoughts: 5 weeks have gone by and that is crazy to me!! I can’t believe I’ve already been doing it that long. This week was intense-but i freaking loved it. I’m crazy sore, did exercises that I’ve never done before, and it was so much fun! I showed my husband my progress pictures and he was all “WHOA. Who’s that girl? Can I have her number?” (he is so funny ;)) My Abs are rock hard and I’ve lost a couple inches in my waist. Like I’ve said before- I didn’t start BBG to lose weight, but it ended up happening anyways. I love how strong my whole body feels. It’s that hurt-so-good-kind of sore and me likey.

56.2 miles for the week, 8:03 avg pace. I haven’t hit a 50 mile week since March, and this week was my 2nd highest mileage week for the year! I’m bringing my mileage back up, up, up!

And I just have to show you some fun pictures:

My garden looks SO good. I can take credit for about three of the plants, that’s it. The rest is all my husbands creativity! He has done a wonderful job at making our backyard into “the compound”
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And this is his current project!! It’s a hot tub area! Woo hoo!!! It is already beautiful and it’s not even done yet. IMG_7335

I worked HARD all week, so I celebrated with this little yummy cocktail! I made simple syrup from my dad’s raspberries. I froze half, and made syrup with half. THis particular martini tastes like the red raspberry martini from Cheesecake Factory and it is heavenly!!!
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My Nephew KILLING it at the Fun Run on Wednesday! 
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My little Beans. Love her. 
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Again…so cool!
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This beauty came in the mail on Saturday….2016, I’m coming for ya. Watch out!IMG_7329

How was your weekend? Tell me something fun that you did!

 

Narragansett Summer Running Festival Half Marathon Race recap

So. About Sunday.
I ran the Narragansett Summer Running Festival Half Marathon. I wasn’t crazy about this race last year. I actually think my blog post said “I HATE THIS RACE.” However…my major complaints of the delayed race start (by a half hour!), having to stop on the roads to allow traffic to pass, and a mid morning start time were all taken care of. They moved the start time to 7:30 am, and re-routed a few of the roads to alleviate police needing to stop runners for traffic. I was a little hesitant that something would happen again with the start time- last year, the race was advertised with a false start time and ended up actually starting a half hour later.

All that aside- There just aren’t a whole lot of races in the month of July at the 13.1 distance. My girlfriend S and I wanted to do a half together in July that we didn’t have to drive 2+ hours to get to and this one was actually the closest to us. It was about an hour away at the beautiful Stonehill College in Easton, MA. (Neither one of us felt like shelling out the extra $$ to venture further and stay overnight in a hotel)

This race also gave runners the option of running the 5k and the 10k. Runner’s could run the shorter distances on Saturday and the half on Sunday. They also did something that I thought was pretty cool- they let the runners pay to stay on campus in the dorm rooms! For those commuting from far away, that seemed like a pretty good option.

S and I have been working really hard all May/June together to hit our goal times. Tempos, 400’s, hills. BAM. We were going to nail it! And we were super excited because the half HAD PACERS. And…not only did they have “pacers”, but they had a 1:30 PACER!! It was planned perfection.

We got to the race really early- About 6:30. We wanted to be able to park, get our shirts, hitthe porta potties…you know the drill, right?
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(Happy smiles before the race!) 

At 7:15 they announced that the start would be delayed a few minutes. And Sunday was hot. The kind of humidity you can feel by 5 am. We were lining up in our corrals and I was sweating already. I had decided to bring the Camelbak because I didn’t know how much the temps were going to spike during the run and I wanted to be prepared. Any minute that it was delayed was putting us into hotter temps; i just wanted to GET GOING. The corrals were pretty well organized. The pacers stood out with their bright shirts and signs, and there were large signs for 6:00/7/8/9/10/11/12 so people could line up accordingly. We found the 1:40 pacer in the front, but no 1:30. Hmmm. We waited a few minutes, then S asked the 1:40 dude if they knew where Mr/Ms 1:30 was at. Mr 1:40 told us that the race never actually had a 1:30 pacer. At that point, I was Suuuuuuper annoyed : We received a BUTT LOAD of emails that clearly stated there would be a 1:30 pacer. S & I had counted on just having to hold someone else’s pace and now we knew we’d have to do it ourselves.

The national anthem was sung by the sweetest young ladies- I forget the name of the group-but they were amazing. I wish I had taken a picture of them because it was awesome! Finally, the race got going at 7:39. S was off like a rocket! I was a little ways behind her, but still felt really good. I felt very confident that I could hit a new PR. Miles 1-6 I was all “everything is awesome!” and “I can do this!”

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I was actually singing Emmett’s song in my damn head, too.

At mile 7 I started to slow. I didn’t think I could hit my goal. The Waaaahmbulance was in full effect. I was hot. there was no shade along the course. Full sun. Full JULY sun. High humidity. Air feeling thick and hard to breathe. I was severely chafing from my Camelbak and I could feel it with every step as the backpack bounced around. Every time I was passing a water station I would take a cup of water and dump it over my head. It helped to cool me down but my neck DID NOT like the water and it probably made the chafing situation worse. Later on, it made for the most painful shower of my entire life.

8-Where is the finish line? Why isn’t it NOW? My “B goal” was going to thrown out, too.

9. Yeah, there are no goals, at all, anymore. I kind of thought that in mile 7, but by 9 I knew that i had to keep chugging along to just freaking finish. I didn’t care that I wasn’t hitting a goal, I just wanted to stop freaking running. Or maybe get run over by a cyclist so that I could stop. (I kid)

10. WHY AM I DOING THIS? I HATE IT. I came up on Shannon and passed her. That was a bad sign that I had slowed so significantly and that my poor friend did too. This was not our day.

Miles 11/12/13.1 took longer than miles 1-10 combined. It included a lap on a track (which was pretty!), and lots of zig zagging along the campus sidewalks. It took so long to get to the finish…which was up a stupid hill. By the time I got there, my jello legs were not happy about a hill. Hills are dumb. Especially at the end of a race. Those hills are real dumb.

I crossed the finish line and was really happy to be freaking DONE. The race also gives you 2 Narragansett beers at the finish line tent, but I passed on that because it was 9:30 am (it felt weird to drink beer that early!) and call me crazy but I didn’t want to drink and drive! Especially after being particularly hot & sweaty…I didn’t want to dehydrate myself even further!

While I waited for my friend to finish, I got this text:

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I had won my AG! So weird. It goes to show you that there is always a silver lining! (Race Wire sends out the texts alerts as soon as you finish your run. The results above don’t disclose the full race finishers. I was the 64/695 overall finisher, 13/380 females, 1/105 AG)

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My poor friend ended up getting really sick from the heat, I felt so bad for her. I’m really glad we were there together. I kept thinking what I would do if I was there solo and I was too sick to get myself home…I would’ve had to call my husband to come and get me & he would also have to bring someone else along to help bring my car back! It made me very thankful that I run the majority of races with friends!

Final thoughts:
-Even if there had been a pacer- I don’t think I could’ve kept the pace on Sunday. It was ridiculously hot and I’m not a fantastic heat/humidity racer. I can’t believe I’m saying this -I would take the wind and rain from the 2015 Boston Marathon over Sunday’s 85-90 temps and air that I can’t breathe. I knew I was ready to hit a 1:30-1:33 time but hot weather racing isn’t easy for me.

-Last year, I ran this race and I was really disappointed with myself. Even though I knew I didn’t do well because of the heat, I was still bummed. This year I was hardly sad AT ALL. I’m really proud of myself for that: It’s very easy to dwell on the bad races, the failed goals, and missed PR’s. I have learned that even the bad races that I don’t meet my goals leave me stronger.  I learn something from every race and move on.  I took a few quiet minutes on Sunday to think about things I liked/disliked about the race, put the memories in a little compartment of my brain, and am moving forwards. Onwards and Upwards, my friends: Never go backwards.

Likes:
-I actually still ended up winning my AG. That’s pretty comical to me! I got a really cute little trophy that I may or may not have carried with me like a security blanket all day Sunday. #youbethejudge

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-I ran with my friend! Our first race of many together!

-My paces weren’t what I wanted, but it ended up being a faster paced long run.

-Race pictures /results were posted immediately. I’ve never run a race that has had the pics out the same day. That was pretty cool! And I love when Race Wire or IResultsLive does the race timing because they are always posted right away.0029568_7668a0be-8432-40e9-a058-b38327c96d85

Dislikes:
-9 minute starting delay

-The fact that I received many emails stating a 1:30 pacer and there wasn’t one. I don’t like false advertising.

-This sounds petty-the water at the finish line was as warm as the 80 degree day. I know it must be hard to chill alot of water..but some coolers or buckets to throw all of those waters in would’ve been a huge thing for a hot runner who needed a bottle of cold, cold water. I’m sure the beers in the beer tent were cool?!

-The mile markers were off. There have been a lot of races that had my splits off and I haven’t run the tangents-but at almost every mile marker, my watch buzzed anywhere from .30-.40 after I passed the mile sign. That’s quite the difference.

-It was hot. I know to expect heat in July. A 7:30 race start is too late. It should have been a 6am start.

I don’t know if I will do this race again. It wasn’t because of the course-I did like the course and all of the adjustments they made. I remembered it being a lot hillier last year. This year, there were a couple of very minor hills, but overall it was fairly flat. Screen Shot 2015-07-13 at 11.29.01 AM

The reason that I probably wouldn’t run this one again is because it’s pretty silly to run a race in July. It’s just hard to do. I can do shorter races-but anything beyond a 5k/5 miler is a real challenge in the dead heat of July.

I’m still up in the air for what my next race will be! I have alot in mind but haven’t fully commited (re:registered) for anything besides the Baystate Marathon on October 18th. THAT race is going to be an amazing day, I already know!

Some time later in the week,I’m hoping to nail down a solid post with an update in training for my fall marathon!

Do you like longer races in the heat?
If so, have you hit a PR during one of them?

Last August, I PRd during a hot & hilly half! I was stunned!

Mileage Recap 7/6-7/12 & BBG Week 4

Monday: No running, BBG Week 4-Legs.

Tuesday: 4 mile run with S. 2 middle miles at goal half marathon pace. Avg pace: 7:18

Wednesday:7.4 hilly miles, BBG Week 4-Arms/Abs.

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Thursday: 3 mile easy run. 2 miles running at night for Track Club. I did 2 fast 400’s and paced my friend M for the rest. I didn’t want to go “all out” because I knew I had a race on Sunday.

Friday: No Running. (The struggle NOT to run was REAL.) BBG Wek 4-Full Body.

Saturday: 3 mile shake out run, followed by strides-7:49 avg pace.

Sunday: Narragansett Summer Running Festival Half Marathon. 13.1 miles, 1:42:47, 7:50 avg pace

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32.6 miles for the week, 7:54 avg pace

BBG Week 4 Recap: I have loved every week of BBG…besides this one. I really disliked it- I saw no progress from it at all. Don’t get me wrong-it was still challenging, but I didn’t feel as great post workout as I have during the other weeks.I know that some weeks are designed to be cut back weeks, but this week is the same as Week 2 and honestly- I wasn’t over the moon for week 2, either. Maybe it’s just me, but I tend to like the odd numbered weeks better! I was still super sweaty and was nearly blinded by the salty sweat dripping in my eyeballs!!

I’ll be back tomorrow with a race recap! 

BBG Girls…thoughts on weeks 2/4?

Fun things Friday!

What an amazing week of running stuff!

I mentioned earlier in the week that I have a new friend that I run with, S. Not only is she an amazing runner and running partner-she is a mom too. A few years ago, she realized how into running her oldest child was and decided to plan an event so that her daughter could really experience the joys of running. There aren’t always a whole lot of running things for little kids, so she created a Summer Fun Run for kiddos from our town at our local track! So amazing! 

This is my first year with the program-I volunteered to help out and S made me the distance coach! Kids ages 3-13 run either .25 miles or .50 miles with me! What a blast it is! Kiddos also get to do sprints, long jump, obstacle course, & a relay! 

My niece has been dying to run and do running related events. So naturally, I signed her up for it. The girl is a natural born athlete and was crushing every event! 

  

  

So proud of my little buddy❤️

A few weeks ago, I was talking to SIL, and we were trying to nail down a day that we could go to the track together. I said to her “I’ve always wanted to start my own track club kind of thing-I know there’s a lot of people who want to work on their running and don’t know what to do on the track that will help them get faster.”  She agreed and told me to put it on Facebook. I really thought there wouldn’t be such a big response to it-maybe me and two or three friends…but there were about 50 people interested!!! So we planned a night-and the first night of “Track Club” was this Thursday. For the first week, we did 4x400s. Next week we’ll build on that. We had a great turnout and it’s something that I feel is going to continue to grow because there are so many benefits from group workouts! WRECKING CREW! 

And last: some pictures came back from my 5k last week…this is my favorite!  

 

Have a great weekend everybody!

Do you ever meet in a group for track work? 

Just a couple tips on getting a 5k PR

By no means do I think I’m an expert at the 5k. However, I’m pretty proud of myself for that 43 second PR that I had Friday night & I’ve had a few people ask HOW I did it, so I wanted to share a couple of things with you. 

Being that a 5k is only 3.1 miles-it doesn’t seem very fair that it can truly be the hardest PR to break. When you really sit down to think about it, it makes sense. It’s really easy to have the idea in your mind that you’re going to just “book it” the whole entire time until you get to the finish line. In reality-booking it for those 3.1 little miles isn’t all that easy. I truly would rather run a marathon than a 5k. It’s just so damn hard because you’re going so fast! Whether your “fast” is a sub 6 minute mile, or a sub 10 minute mile-the effort level is the same. It’s a challenge! Plus you have less time to make up for the seconds/minutes you lose from things like fiddling with your music, or going up a killer hill, or whatever else is slowing you down. 

These are some of the things that helped me to get a PR!

1. Be diligent with your speed work and do the hard work. I’m really good at keeping up with regular track work and tempo runs. I’m getting more comfortable at holding those uncomfortable paces. I know that improvements in my speedwork carryover into every aspect of my running. Do weekly speed work and you will see improvements, too.

2. Knowing the course. This helped tremendously. I ran this race last year and I remembered every single thing about that route, including the fact that the last mile is completely downhill. I knew exactly what I was getting myself into and set my sights on this race to break my 5k pr. 

3. Know your strengths & your weaknesses. I love this 5k course because the last mile is 100% downhill! I excel at coasting downhill! Some people take it easy going downhill, but I tend to go all out on them. I knew when I hit mile 3 that it was time to push it because I was almost there, dammit! It also helps to know your weaknesses:if you hate hills and running in direct sunlight, don’t pick a course chock full of hills that starts at 10:00 when it’s just beginning to be ridic hot outside. Everybody’s different& you’ve got to pick a race that feels right for you. 

4. Focus. I tried very hard to stay “in” the mile I was in. It’s not easy to do, especially if you’re doing a “booking it” pace. I swore, almost cried, and wanted to quit a billion times. I kept myself going though and tried to think ONLY about very small victories-like making it past the people who were handing out water. It was some really fast baby steps to get me the 3.1 miles, let me tell you! 

5. Mantra’s & Music: Two things that helped me tremendously! I kept repeating the word “PR” over and over in my brain. I still wanted to throw in the towel. But, before I could quit, I told myself that “I CAN DO HARD THINGS.” This kept me going! 

Music also saved me. I was so freaking tired by the time that mile 3 hit. I think I was halfway through it and about to cry when “Eye of the Tiger” came over my headphones! Talk about a stroke of luck! I couldn’t quit-I was running with Rocky for gosh sakes!

6. Not placing a whole lot of pressure on myself. I wanted to do well, & I wanted to PR. But if I didn’t-I knew that I was at least running a race with my friend, and that was a pretty great thing. I was 100% okay with not hitting a pr. It just so happens that I did get one, but I really removed the pressure from myself and just rolled with it. Above all-I wanted to have fun! I don’t know if this attitude helped me get it, but I would like to think that it did! 

I hope these little tips help you, and feel free to share some of your own tips that have helped you better your 5k time!

Mileage Totals: June 29th-July 5th, BBG Week 3

What a fantastic, amazing, incredible running week. I had so much fun with all of these runs and I couldn’t be happier!

Monday: Running: Off, BBG Week 3, Day 1: Legs & Cardio This week’s workouts were idential to Week 1.
Week 1, day 1 is ridiculously difficult. It leaves you feeling so sore that you contemplate if you can actually DO any more workouts, again, ever. This time around, it felt a LOT easier, and I went to bed without my legs feeling like they were going to fall off. It was still just as hard, but my body is starting to adapt (slightly) to these strength workouts.

Tuesday:
A planned tempo run with my girlfriend S turned into an easy run. When I woke up, I thought I was fine to do a tempo run. It wasn’t until I actually started to run that I realized how sore I actually was. The paces we held only a week before felt basically impossible on legs that had done a hard leg workout just the day before. Lucky for me-my friend was up for anything and she didn’t mind switching it up to an easy run.

Wednesday: BBG Week 3, Day 2: Arms & Abs. Running: 3 different runs (400s, 400s, 2 miles).
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Run 1: 400s at the track with S. I love running with my new (ish) friend. She is pretty much up for anything, and so am I. She never backs down from a challenge, and we are a really good match for each other! Wednesday morning, we set out to hit the track for some 400s. The goal was 8x400s. We were 4 x 400’s in when it started to downpour with a side of thunder & lightning. I’m all for rain, but I have to call it with a thunderstorm. We called it a day and headed home. My first set was SO GOOD and my best 400s EVER: 1:26, 1:26, 1:28, 1:27.
Run 2: I headed back to the track a few hours later and ended up finishing the workout. It’s really hard to do another 400s workout just a few hours later than your 1st. I don’t recommend it. My 2nd set was a little slower- (that is to be expected though) 1:28, 1:30, 1:30, 1:27.

Two weeks ago, S and I had done another set of 400s where my average was 1:29/1:30. Both of these were faster and I’m so pleased! Later that day/night, I did my BBG arms & ab workout. I can tell I’m so much stronger because I was able to do 3 rotations in the 7 minutes where I usually barely make 2. Progress! Run 3 was a cool down after BBG-a slow 2 miles.

Thursday: 7.01, 57:59- 8:16 avg pace. I took it really easy and did one of my favorite 7 mile hilly loops. I didn’t push the pace at all and just enjoyed the hills.

Friday: BBG Week 3, Day 3: Full body. Running: Hinkley Allen Manchester 5k! a new PR 20:07! :) Splits: 6:11/6:50/6:14/.55.
Screen Shot 2015-07-05 at 8.43.16 PM1st mile: Mostly flat with a slight downhill at the start. Mile 2- Mostly UPHILL. Mile 3-A straight shot downhill!!!! My Garmin read 20:07 for 3:15, 6:23 avg pace…official results have me at 6:29 avg pace. WHATEVER. It was fast & I am happy. I wish i had been faster on mile 2- if I had held the paces I did in mile 1 & 3 I would have pulled a 19:27/19:31 time. To me & my tired legs- we were keeping the same effort on those hills, but obviously that effort doesn’t always translate over into speed. This just means that I have to keep working on getting faster on those hills so I can nail another 5k :)

Saturday: 6 easy recovery miles, 49:50, 8:18 avg pace. I have to tell you that I could barely sleep because I was so excited from my PR the day before!

Sunday: 17 mile long run-17 miles, 8:14 avg pace. I was happy that the 8:14 pace felt really easy and manageable… My legs were still a little heavy from the 5k & it was REALLLLLY warm..but overall I’m very happy with this long run!

48.6 miles for the week, 7:54 avg pace.

BBG recap: I’m now three weeks into the 12 week program. It is such a tough program but I have to say that I feel like I’m in the best shape of my life. I am sore from the workouts-but the strength is really carrying over into my running, just like I wanted it to. I’m so excited to do every workout and I can see/feel lots of results already. I have a lot of new definition in my abs (maybe someday I will post a pic, but don’t hold your breath) and I love how strong and lean I’m feeling. The thing about hitting your 30’s and also being a runner is that you don’t tone up quite as easily as you did in your 20’s(sorry to those of you in your 20’s who are reading this!). Aging-you’re a bitch. These workouts are making me see some serious definition and i like it! I debated skipping Friday’s workout since I had the 5k at night, but in the end I didn’t want to do it Saturday, and I didn’t want to just skip it-so I did it anyway. My motto is “do it right or not at all”– I won’t see results if I don’t do the workouts! #DUH.

I had a lot of inquires asking how I got a 43 second PR on Friday, so I typed up some tips. I’m not an expert, but hopefully, they are helpful! Check back tomorrow!

 Me and my little buddy hope you had an amazing 4th! 

What was your favorite run of the week?

I did it!

I can’t believe I’m writing this sentence: 

Last night, I broke my 5k PR by 43 seconds! My new PR is 20:07!!!!! 

   Wearing the same outfit as last year for the same 5k..only I added the 4th of July socks! (I bought those last year for the same race and they didn’t arrive until July 5th)

7th woman out of 464, 26th finisher, 2nd in AG!

I’m also giving a big fat shout out to my friend M! (We are twinning here, and we did last year, too…good times& it’s really easy to find someone who’s dressed identically to you!!) You might remember me telling you that M was out of the running game for a while because she had a baby. We ran our first post baby 5k together at the beginning of June. Last night, she smashed that June time by 2 minutes!!! I’m so proud of her!  Twinning!

Thanks everyone for sending me those speedy thoughts! I think that & the gorgeous weather and very low humidity helped me get this very crazy awesome PR! I’m so close to breaking 20–I can smell it!! 

Happy 4th of July, everyone. Today I get to celebrate America’s birthday with my family, I hope the same for you! Thank you to all who have served and fought for America’s Independence!    

 

Sports Bras: My Favorites, non favorites, and some just so-so’s!

As promised: My sports bra favorites! I never realized that I had such a large sports bra collection until I sat down to write this post! Not pictured here are the duplicates I have of my favorites. I think that I have been on a quest to find the “Perfect Sports Bra” and never knew it until writing all this down!

I decided that I would score each bra in my sports bra collection. Scores are based on support, comfort, price, chafe-ability, and cuteness (I had to put that in there). To me, my perfect bra has adjustable straps & back closure, comes in bra cup sizes, doesn’t chafe me, is reasonable priced, and offers good support. OH, and it has to be a really fun/BRIGHT color! Most bra’s last about 6 months for me; sometimes they last longer. I try to extend their life with hand washing & line drying.

1.) For years, I only bought sports bras at places like TJ Maxx & Marshalls. I still peruse the aisles to see if I can find one that I like, but lately I haven’t been as lucky.  The first sports bra in my collection is one I have had for YEARS. I don’t even know how long I’ve had it for- I would say at least 3 years? You’re not supposed to keep/wear sports bra’s for that long, but this one has held up over the years. It’s a new balance sports bra and I probably spent $12.99 on it.

I give this bra a score of 75%. I now only wear it for shorter runs (7 or under). It hardly ever chafes me and it’s really comfortable. It doesn’t have lined cups or anything that makes it look supportive, but it is. When I first bought it, this was the bra that I always made sure was clean so it was ready for me when I wanted to use it. Because it’s really old-it’s not as supportive as it used to be and I no longer wear it on long runs. I find that it gives more of a uni-boob look rather than two separate boobs (that was such a weird sentence) and the score was lowered in the cuteness category. If it was a brand new bra- it would have scored higher!
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2.) Moving Comfort. Last June was the time that the above NB bra started to chafe me so I was on a MISSION to get some sports bra’s that did no such thing to my poor boobs. I bought 3 Moving Comfort sports bra’s (2 pictured here because I have 2 of the same ones). I really liked these at first, they are very supportive and I love the color. But they began to chafe me within a month.

The hotter the temps got, the more these bra’s began to leave marks. No matter how much glide or vaseline, it seemed that I was left with a mark. I know a lot of you have amazing luck with Moving Comfort, however, I do not. I would probably give them another shot, however it would only be if I found a MC bra on a very deeply discounted clearance price. I was really disappointed that these didn’t work for me because I spent about $50-$60 on each one. I hate to give these such a low score… but I have to do it-55% (don’t hate me, Moving Comfort fans!)
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3.) Under Armour. I found one similar to mine here. I love the bright blue color of this bra. I bought this one on the same day that I bought the Moving Comfort bra’s. it works great, but I can only wear it when it’s cooler outside: the little zipper leaves a little mark on me when I’m super sweaty! The support on the bra is decent. If the straps adjusted-It would score higher.

I give this bra an 73%…It’s score is lower because I can’t wear it all year round, it’s not 100% in the support category, and it was about $50, so that’s a lot to spend! (In my opinion!)
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4.) Target C9. I didn’t buy high impact bra’s when I made this particular trip to Target. I should have but I didn’t. These two pictured below are really cute and comfy. I have worn both running before, but I don’t anymore because the stripes one isn’t supportive enough, and the purple can randomly chafe me if I get too hot. Now I use these bra’s solely for BBG workouts, or any time I want/need to have a bra on but don’t want to feel like I’m actually wearing one. I would wear it for yoga or any low impact activity, just not running.

Since they are so reasonably priced (each bra was under $20) and very cute, I give them a 90%! Keep in mind, this isn’t a running sports bra for me though. For the purple, I found a similar one here, and you can go here for a similar one to the stripes!
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5.) This is the bra that inspired Friday’s post. It is SO CUTE! It’s PINK! BRIGHT PINK!! It comes in cup sizes vs s-m-l, and felt very supportive and comfortable. It also has an adjustable back closure, which I love.

This bra is really pretty & I’ll be honest with you: I bought it because it was pretty. I was SO EXCITED to wear it on a tempo run last week. It was really cool morning-only about 55- and completely dry. I finished the run and immediately felt how chafed I was. Band area, under my boobs, side of my boobs. I don’t get it. It’s not too small, and it’s not too big. It is the “baby bear” of sports bra’s but apparently I’m Goldilocks and I don’t belong in this bra? I don’t know. I want to give it another shot, but I also want to NOT be chafed like this ever again in my entire life. So we’ll see. I refuse to keep something so expensive that draws blood-so if I’m not going to keep it, I’m going to return it this week. The bra cost $49.50, but I had a coupon so I spent less. Still, I am not going to keep it if I’m not going to wear it!

I’ve felt before that VS is off in their sizes- I often buy a size and wish I had sized down to a smaller size. However, their bra’s have always been on point (for me). I think that if the straps of the bra were adjustable, I wouldn’t have gotten so beat up. Overall-it got a score of 66%. This seems really high to me! I only wore the bra for 52min and I was ridiculously chafed like I had run a marathon! The more I write about the bra makes me realize–> IT MUST GO BACK!
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6.) This is another VS bra. Again, I had a coupon and didn’t pay the full price of $58.50. I adore this color and the strappy back of the bra is my favorite part! This bra doesn’t have adjustable straps, but maybe the thickness of the straps makes it not need it? When I wear it, I don’t feel the need for them. I have to be honest with you in the fact that I’ve only worn it 4-5 times. But, i haven’t chafed and it has remained comfortable. I am giving this bra an 85%! It scored only 5 pts in the “price” category. If I hadn’t had a coupon-I wouldn’t have paid full price for it because that’s ALOT!
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7.) This is the last VS bra I’ll show you, I promise! I bought this one at the semi annual sale earlier this month. I try to stock up on stuff during that sale because you can get alot of extremely overpriced merchandise for a good deal.

I love the adjustable straps and the light coral color. It also has an adjustable closure back. BOOM. A trifecta of important things! Again, I’ve only had this bra for a few weeks, but it’s fairly comfortable, has good support, looks cute, and it comes in bra cup sizes. I got this bra on sale, but it’s regular price is $49.50. Even though it’s comfortable, I think it has the possibility to chafe me on a long run, so unless I’m stuck-I’m going to stick with wearing it for shorter runs. Overall, I scored it at 85%.
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8.) Nike.I LOVE this bra. I love the color, the fit, and how seamless it is. I bought it 10 months ago and wore it consistently for 6 months. For the first 6 months, it never once chafed me, stayed put, didn’t give me a uni-boob. I wore it for every long run. After those 6 months, it started to wear out and randomly chafe me along the straps and my back. I haven’t gotten a replacement (yet) but I truly adore this bra. Although it doesn’t have adjustable straps or closure, it stayed right where it was supposed to and it also comes in bra cup sizes. I now only wear it for shorter runs. I think that the support in it is wearing out and it holds up better for shorter runs.

I’m going to pretend that this is a brand new bra instead of an older one (it’s my scoring chart and I can do what I want to!) because this bra REALLY did its job for it’s predicted life span. ANd although it IS expensive ($65), I firmly believe that it was worth every damn penny: 90%!
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9.) Skirt Sports! Save the best for last! I love this bra and I have 3 of them. It has adjustable velcro straps and you also have the ability to make it a cross back bra. There is also an adjustable closure in the back. I love the bright pink color, and it’s really comfy. It’s now my go to bra. I’ve been wearing this bra for about 8 months, and so far none of the 3 have worn out on me. SS also has “Bra bling” and you can swap out your bra straps for new ones! Pretty cool!! This is my go to long run bra, and really, I tend to pick this bra up first before any others. I’m an ambassador for Skirt sports, and I swear, they are not paying me to say this: I LOVE THIS BRA!!!! I am actually planning on buying a new one soon because I think one of my pink ones is going to be hitting the good will bin sometime soon. It’s pricey- $65, but just like the Nike bra, I think it’s worth every penny. Annd you can use my 20% discount code (SSGWR20) some good savings :)

I gave this bra a 95%! It got 15/20 in the “price” category because you can use my discount code and save. Other than that-it scored a perfect 20 in everything else!!
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I hope this helps you! And for anyone who wondered what scoring model looked like (Don’t judge me on the white out, please and thank you!)
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How long do your sports bra’s typically last for?

Mileage Recap, BBG Week 2, & some running things!

Monday-Off from running. BBG- Legs. This week there was so much jump roping. I am the worst jump roper EVER! The goal is to do as many reps of each circuit within the 7 minutes. I actually had to stop my timer when it was time to do the jump roping because to do 100 “skips” (that’s what the book calls them) it was taking me nearly 7 minutes. I told you–Worst jump roper EVER. I’m way too uncoordinated. Maybe this workout will help me improve???

Tuesday: Off. I had planned on doing the Good Times 5k race with my girlfriend. The weather prediction called for thunderstorms & a possible tornado RIGHT at the race’s start time. I still wanted to run it (because the weather is not always right), but, My husband convinced me to stay. It was unexpected 2 day break from running!

Wednesday: 8 miles, 8:24 avg pace, BBG day 2 (arms & abs).
After 2 days off from running, I would’ve expected my legs to feel fresh and well rested, but they didn’t! Every mile was exhausting, and it wasn’t even hot outside! It’s so weird how certain runs can feel so awesome, yet others- you have to work for a pace that you know is slow for you!

Thursday: 7 mile tempo run with my speedy friend, BBG Day 3, Full body.
We were a minute faster than our tempo run last week! 3 tempo miles averaged 7:10. My goal is to continue to add mileage and get my average tempo miles to be down from 6:55-7:00.IMG_6905
I had to move my 3rd BBG day to Thursday vs. Friday because my long run was moved from Saturday to Friday.

Friday: 16 miles,8:14 avg pace. I feel like I haven’t had a great long run in about a month. I know that this week & last, my pace was impacted because my legs are still adjusting to the strength workouts. I started thinking about some awesome long runs that I had last month, and getting down on myself about it. BUT THEN–> I remembered that at this time LAST year, I couldn’t get past a 2:16 for a 16 miler. I remember how HAPPY I was that I did it in 2:16!! Here I was, getting mad at myself for only running a 2:11! I thought about the other good things about this run: That I was a couple minutes faster in the 2nd half than the 1st, and that I was 2 minutes faster than last week. Moral of the story: Find the silver lining for every negative thing in your life!!
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Saturday: 7 miles, 7:59 avg pace.

Sunday: 4 miles in 30 min. It ended up being a progression run with my miles being 7:57, 7:22, 7:20, 7:17.

44.1 miles for the week, 8:00 avg pace.

BBG thoughts for Week 2: I am loving these guides. Besides jump roping, I learned some other new not- so- fun things that I’m not good at and dislike: Commando’s! I will gladly take burpees over commando’s any and all days of the week. I love how strong I’m feeling- my body is responding very well to all this new strength work and I love it! Overall, I feel very lean and very strong.

Now for some randomness…(You know you love it)

-Sunday was really wet and rainy here. I wore compression socks for my run-this was the first time I’ve worn them outside in a couple of months. It felt SO good to wear them! I haven’t been wearing them because I don’t want the awkward tan lines that go along with them!
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-I have a RACE this week-4th of July themed! To tell you the truth, I’ve been pretty excited and pretty nervous about this race for quite a while. It’s a 5k, which I hate, but its extra special because I set my current 5k PR at this race last year..and it was also my very 1st 5k! It annoys the CRAP out of me that I CANNOT BREAK MY 5K PR. I’m really good at controlled speed over long periods of time..aka marathons and half marathons. I don’t excel at the all out burst of speeds that are required to be amazing at the 5k. They are HARD for me. It drives me crazy that my PR was set at my VERY FIRST 5K back when I wasn’t even doing much speed training!

My husband says that I should just get better at pushing through the pain, and “just book it”. He is right– but this doesn’t mean that it’s easy for me to do it! I’m so hoping for a new PR!! Fingers crossed and please send me speedy thoughts this Friday night at 7pm!

-I really love the Facebook memories thing that pops up daily. It was really weird that I was thinking about my long runs at this time last year. FB must have read my mind because a picture I posted a year ago was my memory for Sunday-I was very proud of that 2:18 run! And another memory from June 28th was a status I had posted that eventually gave me the name for this little blog of mine.
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Sometimes I really like the walk down memory lane!!

Do you do a 4th of July themed race?
Any PR’s that feel “unbreakable” for you??