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Friday, March 6, 2015

On my way, simply moving on my way....

Today marks the final day in the first full week of using a "stand desk." I can say a few things with certainty, but I'm not sure exactly how much of them are direct (or indirect) results of standing for most of my days.

Really, I think it's too early to make any definitive statements about the impact of using a stand desk on my life, but regardless, so far I'm enjoying it.

Running this week has been spotty. I did my tuesday run, in my new Brooks Transcends. The run felt good, just an easy four miles. The Transcends felt good. Even though they were still suffering from the stiff "new shoe" feeling, I could definitely feel a difference compared to the other shoes I run in. As soon as I started running the shoe felt "cushier." I can see this being a really good shoe for long runs, or recovery runs when I need a bit more pampering. 

I'll give a more detailed review of both shoes after I've broken them in a bit. It really is hard for me to get a feel for shoes (other than "yup these work") until I've put a bunch of miles on them. In fact I'm just getting to the point with the Mizuno's where they feel "normal" to me. (I still wear my Brooks Ravenna 4's as my normal sneakers, and man do I miss having them as running shoes!)

I missed my thursday run this week, due to massive amounts of snow and ice needing to be removed from my driveway. Me and the Hubs spent an hour in the morning clearing the driveway enough to get our two stuck cars out so we could get to work (late, but hey you can't have everything.) The driveway was still enough of a mess that when I got home, I spent an hour chopping and clearing ice and shoveling snow to clear out enough room for the Hubs to get one car in. He spent another hour clearing enough space to move that car up so we could get the second car in the driveway.

While I was clearing the driveway, using the garden shovel to chop up the ice and heaving foot long two inch thick chunks of ice over piles of snow higher than my head, I decided that this must be what it feels like to do cross fit. Simultaneously immensely badass, and incredibly silly. Like "Look at me! I can totally throw this heavy thing so far! Why? Why am I throwing this heavy thing? Isn't there an easier way?"

The upshot is, I missed a run, but I got a killer upper body workout. My arms, shoulders and back are super sore.  

I'm going to do my weekend runs as planned for the week before the week I missed (So the long run will be 10 miles), and then move on on my training plan. It looks like the temps will be in the mid 30's this weekend so I'm going to try to get at least one of my runs done outside (most likely the shorter 5 miler.) 

Monday, March 2, 2015

That's the way we get by

I had planned on making my triumphant return to running on Saturday, however I woke up with a migraine on Saturday (and ended up incapacitated until around noon.) I had that talk with myself again, the one where I worry that this is the start of the downward slide that ends with months off running and having to restart my training from scratch...again.

Glycerin 11s
Then, Saturday night, I opened a package to find that the two new pairs of running shoes I had ordered from Zulily had arrived! It was just the spark I needed to get myself back on the treadmill. Seriously those shoes could not have arrived at a better time.

And they're awesome. I ordered two pairs (because they were on serious discount.) A bright pink pair of Transcends and a Light blue pair of Glycerin 11's. (sorry for the photobombing cat, but he was as excited about the new shoes as I was!)

So Sunday I was back on the 'mill. I decided on a short run (3 miles) just to get myself back in the groove and so I could wear one of the new pairs of shoes. I actually had a hard time deciding which pair to try first. I eventually settled on the Glycerin 11's.

The run was good. The first mile, of course, felt like a bit of a slog, but once my legs got into it, the rest of the run felt easy. The shoes felt a little stiff, and I think I need to adjust the laces on my left foot a bit ( they felt a little tight across the bridge of my foot, ) but other than those minor complaints they fit well. I think once I break them in a bit, they'll be fine.

I'm looking forward to trying the Transcends, and to having a few pairs of shoes to rotate through. I've read that it's a good thing to do, for injury prevention. Also, I can be one of those matchy matchy people you see on runs!

On the weight loss side of things, I've been taking "progress pictures" at the beginning of every month. Because I haven't been seeing much movement on the scale (or minimal movement at least,) and it was starting to discourage me. The pictures however tell a different story. Here's the side by side from January and March 1st. (March is on top, January on bottom.)

I can definitely see a difference, for the first time in a long time. It feels good to look at those pictures and actually see progress. Especially when the numbers on the scale keep taunting me.

Today marks the first day of the first full week of "Stand desk" life. I put "stand desk" in quotes because it really is a kludged together work station. I basically have a box on my desk, with my monitors on top of the box, and I've raised my chair enough that I can sit when I need to.  It requires a lot of tilting of monitors, and the height is not ideal, but it works...mostly. We're hoping to get actual stand desks in at work at some point, but this will work until then. Weird side note on this, I've found that I'm hungrier, earlier, now that I'm standing most of the day. Not snacky like I normally am (which I think is mostly boredom,) but actually, stomach empty, hungry.

I'll sign off with some cuteness. As I've said before, the Munchkin was sick all last week. Thursday my parents watched her, and my Dad sent me this picture of her on their elliptical machine. She apparently was on it for a while, and was fascinated with trying to make it go faster. Makin' her momma proud!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Another lost week

Really, it's not a big deal, and for the first time that I've run into one of these, I actually don't feel super panicked about it. I got sick, then the Munchkin got sick, and even though she's mostly better, no day care means no time for Mommy to run. Our routine is just all thrown off, and it has me longing for summer, when a run outside with the Munchkin in the Jogging stroller would be a viable option.

However, I'm way ahead of the game on my training plan, so a lost week is no big deal.

The funny thing is that I think my legs are less happy with me from running up and down the stairs while home with my daughter than they've been after any of the long runs this training cycle.

In other news, after campaigning for a stand desk at work for a while (and getting promises that one is coming eventually,) my department took matters into our own hands and "made" ourselves some stand desks. Yes, I am working with my computer on a box.

So today is day two of having a (somewhat) working stand desk, with it set up for me to be able to sit comfortably as well. I'm super happy about this too, which is weird because it's such a small thing. I really do feel that it's going to make a difference in my overall health though.

Monday, February 16, 2015


I cracked ten miles on my long run this week. It was a super rough run too.

My schedule the past week was M: Rest, T: 4 miles, W:Rest, Th: 3 miles, F: Rest, Sat: 5 miles, Sun: 10 freaking miles.

So my legs were tired already from the five on saturday. And I've been having insomnia, and was super sleepy. And my daughter took a long time going down for a nap, and and and....I had so many reasons not to do this run. Or not to finish it.

Instead I plugged myself into the laptop with netflix streaming fringe and just went. I tried so very hard to ignore where I was in the run, to just almost forget the fact that I was running at all.

My legs were tired (I said that already didn't I?) and my calves started to protest around mile five, but my lungs were fine. In fact the only real issue was that my legs felt increasingly heavy the whole run.

I finished the run, exhausted, and then (because I am a parent and a spouse) went grocery shopping.

Today my legs hate me, even though I'm rocking the compression socks. I see a foam roller and some advil in my future.

I'm also super nervous because this is the point in my training where the wheels have come off in the past. My longest run before my first half marathon was just shy of 10 miles. (around 9 1/2 I think) and then my longest run with the FF training group was  8 miles.

So now, with the exception of the half marathon, I'm running these distances for the first time. Next week's long run is a 12 miler. I crashed and burned at mile 11 of the Half. I am super nervous about where I am in my training, especially since none of these runs have been outside. The conditions around here are too nasty right now for me to risk it. (Snow everywhere, no sidewalks, very little shoulder left on the roads, and of course I'm usually running after dark.) I'm trying to trust the training, but it's so so hard when I've fallen apart twice already.

Here's hoping third time's a charm.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Still Here, Still Running

So, life has done it's normal thing and swarmed up in a lot of ways to keep me on my toes. I've managed to keep on with my training plan, despite an increasingly chaotic schedule. So I'll call that a win.

I'm starting to feel the strain of the increased milage in my legs, more often than not they'll feel heavy for the first couple miles, until I settle into a run.

I did my first 9 miler on the First, which was kind of a breakthrough point for me, since the last time my runs started to fall apart around 8 miles. One funny thing happened during the run, my treadmill cut out around 8.5 miles into the run. The belt just stopped randomly. I ran right into the front of the treadmill. The display was still going, and turning the machine off and back on got the belt going again, but I think I'm gonna need a new treadmill soon.

This past week was a drop back week as far as my long run, only seven miles, and only 18 miles total for the week. I know I needed it. Between all the craziness that's been going on in my life (most of it good!) and how my legs have been feeling, I think I needed a mini-break.

This week is back to the big miles. We'll see how well I hold up to the ten miler at the end of the week.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

It's time to start Running!

I spent all of last week getting myself back into the groove of running. Now I need to get back into the groove of blogging! 

Last weeks runs were good. Nothing spectacular, but good. I decided to repeat week 3 in my training plan, since I'm still coughing quite a bit. 

So the plan for the week was this: Monday-rest, Tuesday- 3, Wednesday- rest, Thursday- 3, Friday- rest, Saturday- 4, Sunday- 7.

 The reality went like this:

Monday: Rest and whine about how lazy I feel.

Tuesday: 3 awesome miles. Contemplate going straight to the next week on the plan for the rest of the week.

Wednesday: Rest, and congratulate myself for getting back on track.

Thursday: 3 Miles. Feeling kinda eh, and crunched for time. Feel super frustrated about the fact that I was aiming for four, but ran out of time and had to go make dinner. Decide it's not that big a deal, there were only three miles on the schedule for the week you were originally planning on doing, so we'll just repeat that week after all.

Friday: Go out for drinks with a friend, realize after two drinks and a lot of conversation just how stressed out and over scheduled you've been. Make nebulous plans to fix that. Also realize there's no way in hell you're getting up at 6am to run outside on Saturday morning with the pace group. Add in the thought that you most likely shouldn't be running outside in the cold until the cough lets up. Argue with yourself about whether or not that's just an excuse, decide it dosen't matter, since it's now after midnight.

Saturday: Get buried in housework, realize half an hour into the Munchkin's nap that I should already be on the treadmill to get my 4 miles in. Contemplate not doing the run. Argue myself onto the treadmill. Halfway through an episode of Fringe, realize you didn't start the "workout" feature on the fitbit. Start the "workout" on the fitbit and shrug. Realize shortly after that that you never started your run in the nike plus app. Decide to run until the treadmill says three miles, start the nike plus app for speed tracking and distance estimating purposes. Run for approximately 55 minutes at an approximate average speed of 11'50". Treadmill says three miles. Decide to err on the conservative side and call it about four miles. Think more seriously about replacing stupid treadmill.

Sunday: Take Midget and her BFF to the Museum and Science center along with the BFF's Parents. Have awesome time running around after two Tornado's in Toddler form. Spend too much time on the recumbent bikes that light up lights when you peddle them. Return home late for nap time, super tired. Watched the movie Running Man on TV. Midget takes a short nap, resulting in a missed run. Decide to do run on Monday.

Monday: 7 long, slow, sloggy miles. Legs are dead tired and thighs ache. Realize long after run is finished that thighs ache from the "biking" done at the Museum. Decide I need to do more biking. Super proud of finishing out those 7 miles. 

Today I'm (hopefully) back to the training plan. The rest of this weeks schedule should look like this: Tuesday- 3, Wednesday- rest, Thursday- 4, Friday- rest, Saturday- 4, Sunday- 9.

Let's see how close to it I end up.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Living Dead Girl

Uuugh. I just lost an entire week of training to the flu. First, the Hubs went down at the beginning of the week, which meant I had to skip my run on tuesday, but no bigs I thought, one missed run. Then Wednesday it got me. I went down hard wednesday night, and just started feeling human again yesterday.

I'm still coughing quite a bit and have some chest congestion, but hopefully tomorrow's short run will be enough to get me back on track.

I'm super frustrated about it too, because my first week went so well! Even the seven mile long run felt good.  I'm debating how far to dial my training back, if I should repeat the last sucessfull week in the plan, or just start with the week I "missed".

Here's hoping tomorrow's run gives me some clarity on it!