Staying Fit While not Training

Recently, I’ve been running about 20-30 miles a week.  I’m not training for anything and depending on my schedule, many of my miles are indoors.  This week when I have the most time, of course, it’s been over 90 degrees most days. That is fine, I’m not a pace oriented person and the only time I’ve charged my Garmin in the last few months was for hiking.

Thinking out loud, I’ve been running for just about 6 years now.  Usually, you can find me training for something, racing a few times a month, or injured. Right now, I’m doing none of those things. I rarely just take “me” time, and I never burned out until April.

Most weeks, though, I’m just busy.  As a blogger, it can be tough to find: “stuff to talk about” when you are working for most of the time.

As I mentioned, I’ve just been busy.  This summer has been extremely enjoyable and not much of that has to do with running.  Recently, I went flying around NYC with my husband but we’ve done a lot of fun and unique stuff.

What I have been trying to do is get about 30 minutes of exercise in most days of the week.  Whether that is running, going to a class, or just taking a walk with my husband, I want to get some sort of fitness in!

As athletes we often feel as though we have to be “hardcore training” or doing absolutely nothing and resting.  I’m all for rest days, and I believe resting in general is undervalued but it doesn’t have to be the all or noting concept.

Usually 30 minutes of activity is better than none.  Of course, there are exceptions (if you are tired, sick, injured, etc.) but it’s all about balance.

Here are just a few things I’ve been trying to incorporate into my week:

  • Planning Ahead: Right now, I don’t always know what will pop up in my day or even week. I can plan ahead and know at least on weekends, I can get a longer run or activity in.
  • Staying Flexible: As I mentioned, I don’t always know whether I’ll be able to have time to run until halfway through the day. I try to keep clean exercise gear in my car.  If it means running inside, running on the AlterG treadmill, or running when it’s hot, that is fine.  It’s also fine when there just isn’t enough time in the day.  I try not to make that a habit but I don’t get bent out of shape when there isn’t time to workout.
  • Catch up on TV and Run Indoors: Yes, I have a few guilty TV pleasures (including America’s Got Talent). If I can get everything done throughout the day, I dedicate the time to watching TV and running.  The run goes by quickly, and I actually get to run.
  • Focus on Eating Better: Since I’m not running as much, eating better is a priority. When I do eat better, I feel as though I have more energy and can accomplish more too.  Like fitness, it’s not all or nothing but I have been focus and prioritize on eating better.  I’m not strict or counting calories but I try and grab an apple versus a bag of cookies.  I’ll save the desserts for the diner.

Running and fitness doesn’t have to be all or nothing.  You can stay active without training for anything.  Don’t get me wrong, I look forward to being a little less busy and picking out a goal race, but that time isn’t now.

Other Related Posts: 
Quick Core Ideas for Runners
NonRunning Workout Ideas

Questions for you:
How do you stay active with a busy schedule?
Are you training for anything now?

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Brooks Ghost 10 Shoe Review

In the Spring, I ran in the Brooks Ghost 9, and it was one of my favorite shoes of 2017.  I ended up running the entire 300-400 miles, and it was replaced in my rotation with other models including the Glycerin 14 and Launch 4.

To be honest, the Brooks Ghost 10 was one of my most anticipated updated shoes!  Brooks is not paying to me review their shoes.

Working in the running store, I can tell you the Brooks Ghost is one of the most consistent shoes on the market. If you like the 1…you’ll probably like the 2 and the 5 and the 10. I like the Ghost 9, and I also like the Ghost 10.

Most of the update from the 9 to 10 is in the midsole.  The Ghost 10 introduces a new two-piece midsole design.  It makes it more fluid for running and able to accommodate many different foot strikes evenly (IE: whether you run heel to toe, on your toes on somewhere in the middle).

The updated Ghost 10 also has less seems with minimal stitching and overlays. For someone with wider feet, like myself, nothing rubs.  If you have bunions or a wider forefront, you’ll probably appreciate this as well.

Fit:

The Ghost has a narrow heel and wide toe box which is the ideal shape for many people’s feet.  It hugs the arches appropriately and for the most part, fits true to size.  It’s been hard finding shoes that do fit true to size recently, plus everyone’s foot shape is slightly different (including your left and right foot).

Finding a shoe that accommodates both feet can be a challenge.  The Ghost has plenty of space.  I wore a regular size 10 in the Ghost 9 and wear a regular size 10 in the Ghost 10.

Ride:

With the included new two piece and fluid midsole, the shoe is much more responsive to where you need the cushion.  For many people, they benefit from a much softer heel.  For myself, I benefit from a much softer and well-cushioned forefront.

How can the shoe be so adaptive to so many foot types? Brooks uses a unique Cushion Material called “BioMoGo DNA foam.”  It’s essential, like memory foam.  It molds to your feet and cushions you where you need it. Out of any brand, the cushioning is the most adaptable to your stride.   It’s soft, light weight and well cushioned.

It’s soft, light weight and well cushioned.  I’ve run speed workouts but also long runs in the Ghost.  Ideally, I like to do my easy runs and long runs in the shoe though.  Since I’m not running a lot, I do the majority of it in the Brooks Ghost 10 right now.

In summary, I like the Brooks Ghost and think it’s a great shoe.  The updates from the Ghost 9 to the Ghost 10 have only enhanced the fit.

Current Rotation:
Brooks Ghost 10 (any run)
Brooks Glycerin 15 (Review to come! any run)
Hoka Bondi 5

Other Shoe Related Posts:
Should You Wear Running Shoes Outside of Running?
How Alternating Shoes Can Benefit Your Running:
Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes
How to Find the Perfect Pair of Running Shoes
How to Get the Most Shopping at a Running Specialty Store

Question for you:

What is your favorite running shoe?  Has it changed through the years? 

 

Flying through the Hudson Exclusion and NYC

As many readers know, my husband is a pilot.  While I haven’t mentioned it much recently, we go on shorter, private, flights together.  No, we don’t own an airplane but since my husband has his General Aviation license, we are able to rent certain aircraft as well.

So with that, last weekend we decided to go flying!

The pilot himself

And of course, it would not be complete without an awkward Instagram stories selfie.me selfie private flying

My husband and I have flown several times together.  He flies, I take photos and hope I don’t puke (which yes, has happened).  Sometimes, we just fly down to on our favorite restaurants: Georges Place in Cape May.  Other times, we fly to North Jersey like Pompton Plains. Last weekend, we decided to do a flight from Berlin, NJ to Oxford, CT.  It was our longest private flight together.

South jersey
Southern New Jersey

While planning the trip, we ran into a few Snafus.  President Trump was in Northern NJ which puts flight restrictions into the air.  There are certain places you can’t fly as well as other places you must fly at a certain altitude.  Depending on who is in town, it can shut down a lot of private flying.  Since Trump frequently visits Bedminster, NJ it has shut down a lot of weekend flights.

If you break any of the rules that are put in place, your plane can be escorted out by an F-16 or shot down. Last weekend, most of Western NJ was shut down but we were able to find a cut through to CT by way of the Hudson.  There were plenty of military aircraft patrolling NYC.

As we flew up, it was neat to be able to fly over Mcguire AFB and see all of the planes lined up. While they look tiny, I can assure you they are not.

mcguire AFB

Comparison: standing in front of a single engine of one of those planes last year.

Standing next to one of the engines

After that, we headed right up to Northern, NY and to NYC.  I didn’t expect how close we would be able to get to the buildings.  It was incredible and truly breath taking.new york city private flying

It eventually led to a selfie next to the new World Trade Center Building.

new york city by flight new york city by flight

private flying nyc me selfie

After that, we headed up to Oxford, CT.  We chose the airport because we knew there was a nice restaurant there and we could grab a bite to eat and fly back!

The trip back was just as beautiful.  The sun was slowly setting, so we were able to see a gorgeous sunset along the Hudson.

reentering the hudson
reentering the Hudson
ellis island and the statue of liberty
Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty
statue of liberty
Lady Liberty Herself

Jersey City Area:

Sandy Hook and Jersey Shore 

sunset new jersey flight

The total flying time was about 3 hours and it went perfectly.  We had a great time flying and saw a lot of great views.

Other Flying Related Posts:
Flying to Cape May
Flying to Pompton Plains

Questions for you:
Have you ever flown in a small aircraft?
Have you been to NYC?  

Workouts: More Hiking and Running

This week was similar to last week. I’ve been running when I can, but not forcing anything.  In case you missed it, last month I mentioned I was going to be busy through most of July and August.  Since I wasn’t training for anything, it didn’t make sense to force myself to cram longer runs, workouts, and training into my day.

Running is a great sport, and one of my favorite hobbies but it’s not worth adding an extra layer of stress into my life right now by training for something too.

Fitness is important to me, so I do try and give myself 30 minutes for most days to get some sort of exercise in.

Monday: 3 miles
Tuesday: OFF
Wednesday: 5 miles
Thursday: AlterG 60 minutes
Friday: 4 miles
Saturday: 4 miles
Sunday: Hike Stairway to Heaven

On Saturday, I felt as though I was on top of the world.  My run felt amazing, and I almost felt like my old (running) self.  It’s been nearly 3 months since I’ve trained for anything (Cue: where the did the time go, comment).  I burned out for  6 weeks, and then when I started to run more, I needed to put running on the backburner when I prioritized other things.

Most of the outdoor runs were boring.  I enjoy running on the AlterG.  Since it’s been so hot, I feel as though I can run at any time without worrying about the weather.  Its hot inside, but without humidity.

The hike to the “Stairway to Heaven” was stunning and I’m glad my husband and I were able to experience it.  I’ll recap the entire weekend soon, but to say it was one of my favorite weekends is an understatement.

I’m hoping in the fall things will settle down and I’ll be able to run more in the coming weeks. As far as life goes, the next few weeks will be able to tell me how much time I’ll be able to dedicate to training.

Posts from the Week:

27 Facts about Me

Staying Prepared on Long Days

 Questions for you:

What was your best workout last week?

Do you like hiking?

 

Budd Lake Diner

Recently, I went to the Budd Lake Diner in Mount Olive, New Jersey.  I went on a Monday for lunch, and it was fairly busy.  Luckily, there was plenty of parking.

For some reason, I had it in my mind the Budd Lake Diner was going to be a metallic diner.  It wasn’t, but it was still nice.

Atmosphere: B
The atmosphere of the Budd Lake Diner is different than what I anticipated, but it wasn’t bad.  For some reason, I expected it to be in a big, shiny, metallic building.

The outside is actually a square, cobblestone building while the inside is what you expect in a diner.  There are plenty of booths, several tables, and a full-length bar.  It took a while to locate the dessert case which is hidden in the back.  I would have ordered dessert, but I couldn’t see it well.  I wanted a giant diner cookie to go, but they didn’t seem to have them.

Coffee: B
The coffee was brewed fresh, and the waitress refilled it often.  While there was nothing unique or extraordinary, it wasn’t bad either.

Budd Lake Diner Mount Olive

Service: B
The waitress at the Budd Lake Diner seemed a bit standoffish.  She was never rude but wasn’t welcoming either.  She refilled our beverages and brought our food out quickly.   It was one of the faster restaurants we’ve been too!

Food: C
The Budd Lake Diner serves everything 24-7.  You can get a steak at 4 am if you want it.  I always appreciate 24-7 diners because you can usually get any food you want at any time.  Breakfast at 10 pm? Or dinner at 6 am…

I ordered scrambled eggs, with “Taylor ham,” and hash browns as well as buttered rye toast.  I was disappointed with the portion size of the food.  Normally scrambled diner eggs are light and fluffy, but these just tasted packaged.  The Taylor Ham was good, and it’s hard to mess up toast.  Was it the greatest diner meal, I’ve had? No, but it was edible.  It was one of the smallest portions of food I’ve received!

budd lake diner mount olive

Cost: $$
For my meal and coffee, the cost was about $11.  It was expensive for the quality and quantity of the food.

Overall Thoughts/Would I come back? 
The Budd Lake Diner wasn’t a bad stop, and it was a typical diner in New Jersey.  There wasn’t anything unique or unusual to draw me back, and I found it more pricey for the quality and quantity of food.

Atmosphere: B
Service: C
Coffee: B
Food: C
Cost: $8-20
Overall: C

Nearby Diners I’ve been: River Star, Randolph, and Jefferson (on of my top 5)

Questions for you: 
What is your favorite way to eat eggs? 
New Jersey friends: Is it, Taylor Ham or Pork Roll? 😉 

27 Facts about Me

Today is my 27th birthday.  I’m one step closer to matching my grandma soul with my actual age.  After 21, most of the birthdays kind of blend together.  I’ve been blogging for nearly 6 years now, so I thought it would be fun to share 27 facts you may or may not know about me.  It was actually difficult to come up with because as a blogger all I do is talk about myself…

  1. I was born in San Diego. I remember nothing because I was a baby.
  2. Since my dad was in the Navy, we lived and traveled to a lot of cool places. I grew up in England as well as Japan. Ultimately, I went to high school in Virginia.
  3. I still have relatives that live on the Orkney Islands just north of Scotland.
  4. Growing up in England, I actually went to a British school for a while.  When we moved back to the US, I had a British accent for a long time.
  5. Before swimming, I dabbled in many sports including soccer, tennis, and basketball.  I was terrible at all of them.  I never scored any goals in soccer or baskets in basketball.  When I was 6, I threw my tennis racket at another kid making fun of me.
  6. My favorite color is yellow. This useless tidbit will help you no way.
  7. Before 2012, my blog was actually called LOLZthatSwim. Then I started running.  Then I quit swimming.  So first I added LOLZthatSwim(Run) then ultimately just went with FueledbyLOLZ (incase I decide to do something completely different).  Who knows maybe I’ll rebrand to BasketballingLOLZ…

    If you remember this header, you win the internet today.
  8. I don’t want a lot of TV shows but do follow: Americas Next Top Model, Americas Got Talent (Can you tell Tyra Banks is my favorite celebrity).
  9. I like to read more nonfiction than fiction. Most of my favorite books are biographies or autobiographies.
  10. I don’t like dogs. I’m sorry I don’t. I’ve been attacked by a couple.  I will tolerate them, and I’ll never harm one, but I’m not a dog person.  Left to my own, I won’t adopt a dog.
  11. One semester in college, I held the record for eating the most giant pancakes at a local diner. That was a semester I ran and swam. 
  12. I have three brothers. Most people don’t know but I also have an older brother living in Seattle.  (As well as a brother in the military and one living in VA).
  13. I was on homecoming court in high school.  The glory days?  Probably not, but I got to ride around on my dad’s car in homecoming parade with my good friend D, so it’s all a win.
  14. My parents have a pet donkey. You can read about how they acquired that here.

    Hello ladiez
  15. I studied math and education until senior year of college, and then ended up changing majors to public health. Many long term readers know this!
  16. My favorite foods are squid, eel, and steak. I definitely like my protein!
  17. My favorite nonrunning brands include: JCrew, BCBG, and Kate Spade.
  18. During my first half marathon in 2012, I listened to the song “Party Rock Anthem” on repeat for the entire race.  I don’t know why, but I didn’t hate it.

    At my very first half marathon, April 2011. One of five races I have worn leggings in.
  19. My first car was a 2000 Pontiac Firebird that I had for 8 years.  That was my baby.

    Posing on my 21st birthday (but not driving 😉
  20.  Some of my favorite music includes Taylor Swift, Fleetwood Mac, and Nikki Minaj.  You never really know what you are going to get when you ride in a car with me.
  21. My favorite cake flavors are red velvet (which is actually just rich chocolate), orange and chocolate or cherry and chocolate.  If you were planning to get me a birthday cake, then please just make sure there is a lot of frosting.

    Let’s pretend my hair was never this color
  22. Speaking of hair, I’ve dyed my hair almost every natural color.  Black, bleach blond, auburn/red and brown.  Ultimately, I believe my hair looks best darker brown but I let it fade out in the summer. Hair is hair and will probably grow back eventually…
  23. I don’t chew gum (at all).  In college, I chewed gum a lot.  I went through an entire pack each day.  I decided I didn’t like when people chewed gum talking to me, it sometimes it made me feel bloated, and I couldn’t see any advantages to it.  So I just quit cold turkey in 2011.
  24. I love going to the zoo and animaconservationon centers.  My favorite animal is a black leopard but I like any big cats.

    Tigers for Tomorrow Dekalb Alabama
    Tigers for Tomorrow in Dekalb, AL
  25. I don’t like Kombucha juice.  I know it’s trendy but I tried it once and it made queasy.  I’ll let you guys have it…
  26. In college, I receieved the most fashion forward/trendy award…my how the times have changed.

    College graduation
  27. My goal for age 27 is to continue to live life and stay as sponateous as possible.  During college and a few years after, I suffered from anxiety when I couldn’t control a situation.  After marrying someone in the military, you learn…you can’t control anything!  It’s allowed me to take a step back and relax.  My life has definitely not gone anything like I ever imagined but I could not be happier!

Hope you enjoyed!  Tell me a fun fact about you!

Staying Prepared on Long Days

Recently I’ve been out of my house a lot.  When I mean a lot, I mean most days I’m away between 10-14.  Which for me, is a lot!

Between work and volunteering, I’ve been spending a lot of time in my car. For the first week, I wasn’t as prepared and forgot anything from clothing to food.  I quickly realized that I need to start planning ahead.

Now I have an entire day kit in the trunk of my car, complete with running shoes.  If I can squeeze a 3 mile run in, it’s a good day!  (Like yesterday).As most people know, I like Quest Bars a lot.  I’ve talked about Quest several times on LOLZ blog, so when they asked to partner together last year I was more than excited!

Thinking out loud, I’ve used them since college.  At first, it was hard to locate them, and the only place you could buy them was online.  It was one of the first foods I actually bought online!  Now they are becoming more accessible and are in many grocery stores, but the newest place they can be found is 7-11.

While driving home one day, I stopped at 7-11 for coffee and a snack and found the cereal bars.  I was pleasantly surprised, and even though my coffee had plenty of sugar in it, Quest Bars do not.

quest cereal bars

A few reasons why I like Quest Cereal Bars:

  1. Each of the bars has 12 grams of protein, 110 calories, 2-3 grams of net carbs and 6-7 grams of fiber
  2. They have less sugar and carbs compared to other cereal bars
  3. They contain more protein than the average cereal bar
  4. Just tastes good (let’s be honest, some protein bars taste like cardboard)

Since I’m not running as much, it’s important to look more at the quality of things going into my body.  I can’t get away with eating a lot of extra junk every single day.  I’m not saying give up sweets, but I would rather focus on quality nutrition and save desserts/treats for another time.

So What Else Do I have in My Car for Personal Needs?

  • Two full sets of clothing. Do I need a more casual look, or more dressed up?
  • One full set of running clothing complete with shoes (I’ve used this 5 times in 3 weeks)
  • An entire Box of Quest Cereal Bars (Because you never know when you want more snacks)
  • A gallon of water: It’s easier, cheaper, and faster than stopping when thirsty.
  • Rain Jacket/Umbrella because I basically bring all inclement weather to me.
  • Emergency cash: I do keep $20 in my car incase something happens that a credit card is not usable.
  • Backup Cell Phone Charger: You never know, in high school, my car got stuck on the Monitor Merrimac Bridge Tunnel in Newport News, VA when the transmission went out. Guess who didn’t have a usable cell phone?
  • First Aid Kid
  • Duct Tape: I don’t know, it fixes things.

I can honestly say even though I’m busy and running less, I’m enjoying where my life is right now.  It did take some adjustments and getting used to but staying prepared was the main key.

Thanks to Quest Nutrition for sponsoring this post.  I have been using Quest protein bars for years, and I strongly recommend them.

Questions for you:
What do you keep in your car incase of emergencies?
How long are you out of your house each day?