19 Weeks Away

Until the NYC Marathon.

It’s no secret that life and training go hand and hand.  If you have the pleasure of being an elite athlete, you may not have a full time job.  You are coached and your life revolves around your training…after all really being an athlete is a job if you are getting payed.

But alas for me , I’m nor elite nor training is certainly not my job.  Though I wish it was but for me (between 2 jobs) I worked around 70 hours this week.  Needless to say my running has taken a toll and mentally…it has taken a toll on me.  I’m taking care of myself physically and mentally, it’s just frustrating to have little to no free time right now.  (Despite what you may think I’m not a people person 100% of the time).  This post isn’t to complain though because this is how my summer is going to shape up (which is fine, it’s not lifetime).  I’m not trying to stress too much about it.

Monday: AM: 11.3 miles untimed
PM: 55 minutes strength class
Tuesday: 11.3 miles untimed (basically the same run as Monday)
Wednesday: 11.1 miles
Thursday: AM: 12.12 miles tempo 6:59 pace
PM: 5.3 miles treadmill 8:29 pace
Friday OFF
Saturday: 12.25 miles easy
Sunday: 12.2 miles (roughly 8:45 pace).  I actually brought the watch this morning!
Total: 75

This past week in Southern VA it was extremely hot and humid every single day.  Often days the heat index was above 100 degrees.  I knew if I was going to get any speed workouts worthwhile they would have to be in the morning or on the treadmill.  After careful considering (read: what fits into my work schedule) I decided Thursday would be my speed day.  I had contemplated doing 5 easy and then 6 at a tempo pace (I did this a couple of weeks ago) but just decided to go 12 at a tempo pace.  Since I didn’t race this previous week, I would have liked to have two relatively quicker workouts but that didn’t happen.

So my training was semi productive and I managed to stay injury free for another week.  I am in need of a deep tissue massage which is something I’ll look into after my mini-vacation this week.

Speaking of this weeks training:

I am doing a local 5k on July 4th.  I’m really excited to actually race a 5k, though it’s going to be hot and humid as that is what the weather is here.  I’ve somewhat let go of being back under 19 in a 5k for a while.  My long term goal is still New York City…would it be nice to PR in the 5k?  Well duh…am I holding my breath?  Well no.  So with that, we will see where time takes me.

I’m also getting to see Tim when he flies over to East Coast for the rest of the week.  While I can pretty much tell you we will be running, past that I don’t know.  So that’s that and as long as I continue to stay injury free I am progressing in the right direction.

Questions for you:

Does your job(s) effect your training?

I didn’t realize how lucky I had it when I lived in Upstate NY.  While 40 hours seemed daunting for training then….now I’d happily take that.

What are you doing for July 4th

Relax

An interesting question I got was my biggest piece of advice for new runners.  I realize there are so many different directions you could go and I’m sure more qualified people have better thoughts.  However, this is my personal advice and honestly I have exactly one big umbrella statement that if I could tell new, old and all runners in general.

Relax.

Don’t worry about the pace on your training runs.  If you begin to worry, you begin to push the pace and second guess yourself.  Could I go run 70 mile weeks and force myself to run at a 7 minute pace?

Well, it would have to happen on the treadmill and I would get injured within two weeks.  I can almost guarantee you that.

When you begin to add more milage and time into running whether you are a new runner or a seasonal adding more mileage on 50,60…100 mile plan.  Adding more mileage takes time to adjust too and your pace on training runs will be slower.  Don’t worry about that.  Your body is beginning to adapt.  You will feel stronger eventually.

Yes, your short term goal of being faster (read 2 weeks) will not be achieved but when your body adjusts…you’ll feel a lot better.  I personally recommend keeping most of your runs untimed (it seems like the world is a slave to GPS watches these days).  It took me roughly 3 months of absolutely no timing of races to realize that it didn’t matter if my pace was 5 seconds faster, slower, exactly the same…who cares.  You aren’t racing anyone in your training runs…well infact you are racing yourself of how long you can stay injury free.  But I’m confusing myself now.

So with that my biggest advice for any runner is to relax and don’t worry about paces.  It’s physically impossible to get faster on every single run.  Go sans GPS on multiple runs.  It might liberate you.

Question for you: Biggest advice for new, old, any runner? 

Post College Lessons

I have been away from the college scene (though when I was really in it) for about a year now.  When I left and graduated college I thought my life would be pretty much figured out.

I didn’t want to go to grad school…so I’d get a job…back in VA…maybe…just not upstate NY.  Well here it is, a year later and I finally left New York state.  It took a while and I absolutely loved my job but that is not what this post is about.

It’s about what I have learned in my year away from college and taking courses.  Yes, I worked at a college but I wasn’t sitting in lecture halls and going to class anymore…I was…on the other side.  (complete with my own faculty parking pass)

For starters, when you graduate everyone is nervous.

 You are not alone. 

You are not a failure. 

You will not have the flexibility of college classes.

You will not have yourself together.  (I know I still don’t).

Take a deep step back and say “Am I truly happy?”.  For me, it isn’t that I despise New York State or am miserable.  It’s the fact that I right now I have the flexibility to move somewhere that makes me happy and look for a job.  I’m not gridlocked into a contract and why search and apply for a job in NY when I know I would be happier somewhere else.  The key word is happier.

Unless you are going STRAIGHT into grad school…you probably have no idea what you are going to do and have not secured a full time dream job.  (I haven’t and I fully admit that I’m living with my parents at glorious age 22 for a while I continue my quest.)

I can’t give you any advice because I certainly don’t have the credentials to do that but I’m currently applying and looking everywhere.  You never know who can help you when and I never realized the power of networking until now.

The thought of graduating college is so overwealming (and honestly it still is for me too) but just know you are not alone.  Your friends are stressed and worried about full time careers just as much as you are.

Questions for you:

What did you learn post college?

If you are in college, what are your plans afterwards?

Jack King 1m Open Water Race Recap

Oh where to begin this race recap.  Every year, dad signs him and I up for the Jack King 1 Mile Swim.  When I used to be a competitive swimmer it wasn’t a big deal.  It was just 7 days of swimming a week versus 6.  But that is long removed from life and I’m lucky to haul ass to the pool once per week.  I could sit here and talk about my swimming back in my swimming prime but it isn’t relevant.  I don’t swim much anymore, therefore don’t compare myself to that speed, time or mentality.  I literally did this just to finish (which is good considering I got a nice 7 out 7 in my age group!

That being said, when dad informed me he had signed us both up (as well as my brother Matt) I couldn’t say no (meaning I was skipping so many great road races this weekend!).  This is the race I’ve done the longest (6 years!), it’s always so well put together and the people there are great.  So with that, we headed on our way to the race.  I have always enjoyed that swim races start at 10am, I would say it’s nice to sleep in but I don’t really do that so I just mused around.

Upon getting to the race at 9am, we realized…why the hell are we here so early.   Not once have I ever warmed up for an open water swim.  Not once have I ever gotten into the ocean or bay before a swim.  I normally just run in, prey to the high heavens my body doesn’t go into cardiac arrest from the temperature change and that’s that.

Before the Swim
Before the Swim

This time was no different, though it’s in water start.  I started right next to Matt…we were chatting and all of a sudden we heard people yelling to go.  That’s us.

I don’t really know what to tell you about open water swimming.  So here were all my thoughts:

I was taking in the sights of the pitch black water below me.   Yummy.

I took in the feeling of being pummeled several times by several waves.  YAY storm systems.

I took in a sight of some crazy tourists who came too far out.  YAY you need more clothes on.

I never saw the half way point (King Neptune Statue). Boo, it felt like the race was a marathon.

It got extremely chilly during the second half of the swim.  I have gotten hypothermia from an open water race in the middle of the summer before.  It took me nearly an hour to recover from that race and was in a med tent so I’ve always been weary about that.  Because of the storm, there was cloud cover and wind (hence the waves that VA isn’t supposed to have) but it also made it cold.

I was never so happy to see the buoy.  YAY orange buoy.

I did the left hand turn, followed the probably 90 year old man in front of me and ran into the beach.  I didn’t trip on the beach and they handed me my glorious 124th place (out of around 150).

And that is how it happened.

I did try as I don’t bag anything.  This was just a nice awakening of where my swimming fitness is..surprise…it’s not there.

After the swim
After the swim

As I told everyone, getting last in my age group is not a big deal .  I am simply bringing up the caboose to the pain train which still got to the station.

Oh joy maybe I’ll get into the pool for the next open water swim…when my arms aren’t sore.

Questions for you:

Does finishing last bother you?

What is your perfect race start time?

Between 8-9am for me

Oreo Waffle

(Healthy) Oreo Waffle Recipe:

I don’t even know how I thought of it, but a healthy oreo waffle is one of my better waffle creations.

The “Healthy” Oreo Waffle: 

chocolatewaffle

As a kid, I enjoyed Oreos.  As a human, I enjoy Oreos…however; you can’t eat Oreos for every meal and expect to run well or feel great.  That isn’t quite how life works.  So with that, I sought on trying to make a healthier oreo waffle.  It’s also effortless, and the hardest part would be making the frosting…or filling.

(Because I guess you can eat that more often)

Healthy Oreo Waffle Ingredients:

For the Healthy Oreo Waffle:

2/3 cup flour (all-purpose flour, wheat flour)
¼ cup dark cocoa powder (I like Hershey’s Cocoa)
¼ cup sweetener and vanilla extract to taste
1 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1 tablespoon oil

½ cup milk (almond milk works too)

Healthy Oreo Waffle Recipe:

  1. Preheat a waffle maker
  2. Mix all dry ingredients together in a large bowl
  3. Add wet ingredients together and mix in a separate mixing medium bowl.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients.
  5. Pour waffle batter into waffle iron and cook until golden brown.
  6. After cooked, put on a plate and add a layer of melted butter, maple syrup, greek yogurt, whipped cream, powdered sugar, and crushed Oreos.

For the Healthy Oreo Waffle frosting:

½ cup vanilla greek yogurt
2 packets Truvia
2 tablespoons French vanilla creamer
2 tablespoons syrup
Mix the frosting and top on oreo waffle.
Crushed oreo

I don’t have much to say about this except for that since creating it, I feel like a true healthy living blogger by making a healthier version of something.  (This doesn’t often happen ha).  I have probably had the healthy oreo waffle (and shared with my family 4 times in the last week…which is a lot of waffles).  I still like my Oreos, but I enjoy this and has already become one of my top favorite waffle recipes.

Questions for you:
Do you like Oreos?
What recipe have you “healthified”? 

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