The Day I Ran 50K

HI!

After deciding that we weren’t going to be doing the “group run” previously known as the Big Butts 100K Ultra Relay, Rebecca and I started scheming to come up with a good alternative.

She still needed a 26 to 28 mile long run (she is training for a 50 mile race) and I wanted to get in my 31 birthday miles. My birthday is still a week and a half away, but we are going to be out-of-town next weekend and I wanted to go ahead and get the birthday run done. The main reason that I wanted to do a 50K in general was just to get 31 miles in for my 31st birthday.

I think I started this tradition at 29. Although I didn’t have a blog yet, so who really knows what I did back then. One thing I like about blogging is the ability to look back and see exactly what was going on. I’m pretty sure that for 29, I did 29 miles, but it was a run/bike/paddle board event … so technically it was more like a birthday triathlon. The actual distances of the running and biking are fuzzy at this point. I know that I paddle boarded 2 miles, so 27 miles between biking and running … I think it was 14 running and 13 biking.

Actually the more I think about it, that was partially a lie. Not intentionally of course. It started at 26, not 29. I just remembered that on my 26th birthday, I tried to run 26 miles the day of my birthday, which was mid-week. I hadn’t done a marathon before, so that would’ve been the most I had run in one day. I got up really early and went to the gym before work and ran 13 miles. Daniel and I were going to run 13 more miles that evening after work. I made it 10 miles into the evening run and I was done. So close! And yet so far.

After that failed attempt, I must’ve spent 27 and 28 licking my wounds because I don’t remember even thinking about trying to do anything cool those years. Fun fact: I ended up running my first marathon when I was 26. Even though my birthday attempt wasn’t a success, I got it done a few months later.

Last year I ran 30 miles, but broke it up into two runs.

I texted Coach to see what he thought about still doing the 31 miles, breaking it up into two runs again. I decided that if he didn’t think it was a good idea, I wouldn’t do it. He responded saying that he was going to suggest that anyway, but didn’t want me to feel obligated. What?! Sweet. Didn’t have to twist my arm one bit.

Part I

For the first run of the day, we decided to run our “special occasion” route, which starts across the bay and runs along the Eastern Shore Trail. We usually do this as a 20 mile route, but the trail actually goes a good bit further. Rebecca mapped a 26.2 mile route for us. Rebecca, Jessica and I met early Saturday morning and headed across the bay to get going.

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I actually walked out of the house in sandals and forgot my running shoes. How does that even happen? Luckily I had a (new) pair in my car and I had a pair of socks too. I really wasn’t planning to wear my new Launches yet, but … it happened. They are really nice and broken in now!

We started around 5:30 a.m. at Battleship Memorial Park. You can see the USS Alabama in the picture below.

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The first few miles run along the bay on the Causeway. By mile two or three we were all drenched. It was pretty humid out and we knew that it was going to be a long day.

We saw the sunrise over the Delta. It was really pretty!

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The route is really nice as far as bathrooms and water stops go. We stopped at mile 5 at Meaher State Park for bathrooms and to fill our bottles. We made it across the bay and stopped again at mile 9 to refill our bottles at Bayfront Park.

Miles 10 through 16 are fairly hilly and there aren’t really any places to stop for water, so we stopped again at the gas station at mile 10 and got some Gatorade. We decided to utilize a walk/run strategy on the hills to conserve our energy for later in the run. We walked up the hills. This will be a crucial strategy for Rebecca in her 50 mile race and Jessica and I were more than happy to help her “practice.” We took our gels around mile 13 on an uphill. Also good to practice fueling on the go (as opposed to stopping completely).

Before we knew it we were done with the hills. We made another water stop at a gas station at mile 16. In case you haven’t noticed, hydration was key on this run. I wasn’t really sure exactly how far I was going to go during this first part of the run. I was just playing it by ear. Once we got to 16, I decided that 22 was probably the most that I wanted to do at one time. I knew if I went much further than that my legs would be toast and it would be harder to recover and be ready for Part II.

Daniel ran with his buddies Saturday morning and then came out to check on us save the day. He had a big water cooler in the back of his car and he brought us all cherry limeades for a post-run treat!

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He found us around mile 21 and I decided that would be a fabulous time to call it a day (for Part I at least). I hopped in the car with him and we drove to the end of the 26.2 mile route and waited on Rebecca and Jessica to arrive.

Daniel filled up the windpouch and we hung out for a little bit and cooled down.

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Y’all. Something is going on with my hair! I know that in general humidity makes it do crazy things, but it has been exceptionally bad lately. I’m not sure that the picture below even does it justice, but that is the remnants of a braid. The braid used to keep it from going crazy, but now … not so much.

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Suggestions? I need help.

While we were waiting at the “finish line,” we found this handy map. Jessica and Rebecca ran from my left hand to my right hand. I stopped somewhere a few inches above my right hand.

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They made it! So awesome! This was Rebecca’s unofficial 40th marathon and Jessica just ran a marathon on a whim. You know, no big deal.

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We did our usual post-run hang out and drink all the drinks at Coffee Loft thing. It was a great morning!

Part II 

I had 10 miles to conquer this evening. Thankfully, Daniel agreed to bike half of it with me and run half of it with me. We have a standard 5 mile loop that we run pretty often, so we decided to keep it simple and do that twice.

He biked the first 5 with me. Action shot!

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After 5 miles we stopped by the house and he hopped off the bike and got in a little brick run. This got us on the topic of triathalons. Daniel is thinking about training for a half Ironman after his next marathon. I’m going to stick to the running.

After 5 more miles … DONE. 31 miles for the day. Glad to have that out of the way!

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We caught the sun just as it was going down.

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I think it is time for me to find a new birthday tradition … Who am I kidding? I love it. Seriously though, I might have to switch over to kilometers soon though. 32 kilometers is *only* 19.9 miles. That’s a little more doable!

I’ve got over a year to figure that one out. Right now I am thankful for the ability to run and for my wonderful running friends and husband who all helped me get through the miles today.

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See ya soon!

Slight Change in Plans

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First things first … The 50K (aka the 100K relay) that I have been training for got cancelled. Womp. Womp.

We got an email from the race director (RD) late Wednesday afternoon that basically said that because it has rained a lot in the last few days, the trail would get very damaged if were to run on the trail. Instead of cancelling the event outright, the RD is actually moving the “race” to his house, but stressed in the email that it would be a fun run and not a race. It would just be running loops on the streets and/or sidewalks of the RD’s neighborhood. So technically, I guess it wasn’t cancelled. Just changed.

Rebecca and I went back and forth about what to do and ultimately decided that we aren’t going to go. We were planning to leave around 3:30 a.m. to drive 3.5 hours to get to the race in the first place. That was crazy enough when it was actual trail race, but now we would be driving 7 hours round-trip just to run around a (potentially sketchy) random neighborhood that we aren’t familiar with at all. In the middle of the day. By ourselves.

It stinks to not do the race that we trained for, but in the spirit of letting it go and rolling with the flow, we might as well make the best of the situation. I was a little disappointed at first, but I feel good about the decision that we made, especially because now we have come up with a good substitute. I’ll tell you all about that soon, but I’m still planning to get my birthday miles in!

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This week turned into a weird week training wise. Here is what I did:

Monday: 8.35 easy (half on the beach)

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Tuesday: 13.75 miles (w/ 4 miles of speed-work)
Wednesday: Off
Thursday: 7 easy + 5 easy
Friday: 8 easy

Monday’s run was awesome and so refreshing. I was supposed to have a track workout (8 X 800) Tuesday morning, but I could not drag myself out of bed. I knew that Tuesday was really my only shot at getting the workout in. At this point the race was still on and I wanted to have a few easy days before the race. We usually go to Running Wild for the group run Tuesday evening, but I didn’t want to go this week. I usually love group runs at the store, but sometimes I just can’t do it.

The bottom line is that group run at the store is primarily a social gathering, which can be an emotionally draining situation. Introverts have to expend energy in social situations, unlike extroverts who gain energy from such interactions. I enjoy one-on-one (or small group) conversation, but chit-chat is definitely not my thing. Introverts can come across as being shy, anti-social or avoidant, but we’re really not. I promise.

Tangent complete.

I was planning to run on the treadmill after work Tuesday and attempt some sort of workout. I didn’t really like the idea of doing 800s on the treadmill because the speed would have to be too fast. The treadmill is a good option for slower repeats (AT/LT work as opposed to V02 max work), but the faster stuff needs to be done on a track (in my opinion). I ended up doing a wave tempo, which basically means I was alternating between two paces. I did 4 miles of “work” alternating between half marathon and 10K pace every 5 minutes for a total of 25 minutes. I covered the same distance as I would have in the 8 X 800 workout, but it just went a little bit differently than planned.

Apparently differently than planned became a theme at this point. Wednesday we got the email about the race. By Wednesday evening I still wasn’t sure what we were doing, but the one thing that I definitely knew was that I was tired and I needed a day off. It was storming when I got home from work, so that pretty much solidified the rest day decision.

Brooks was not about to let the mini-hurricane outside deter his playtime though.

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I had to bundle up and hunker down to survive out there.

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Rocking the rainboot and dress look! Dressy casual?

Rain also made for glorious sleeping conditions. I woke up Thursday feeling like a new human. Daniel and I ran together before and after work Thursday and then Friday morning I ran with Rebecca and Jessica. After a day off and 2 days of easy runs, I feel good!

Check out this new Galatians 5:22-23 tank top that I got! You can get one here.

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This tank top with a purpose is a wonderful reminder of how we should live and love, how we should treat others and treat ourselves.

I recently found Chelsy on Istagram. She writes, “I hope this tank encourages you to seek the Fruits of the Spirit and I pray that when wearing it conversations are started, relationships are built, and others learn about the joy that comes from knowing Jesus.”

What a wonderful reminder!

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Thanks for reading! I hope you have a fruitful Friday.

A Jog + A Blog

I am channelling my inner Dr. Seuss
to give this post a little spruce

Sometimes it’s fun to create a rhyme
especially when you have the time

I wanted to mix things up today
so I decided to take my run to the bay

I did half of my run on the road
and finished it up in beast beach-mode

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I planned my run at low tide
so there was plenty of beach to hit my stride

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I had to forge through a few creeks
but thankfully none that were over knee-deep

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This is a peek of what I look like up a creek.

I had a few moments of dread
when I had to hurdle over a bulkhead

I have no future in the steeple chase
as I would simply fall flat on my face

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I felt like I was on an adventure to the sea lab
as bay was alive with shrimp, jellyfish and crab

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I even saw a fox!
But thankfully no crocs!

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I ended up with just over eight miles
and arrived home with all smiles

I will bid you farewell
with one last picture of a beautiful artesian well

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I hope that you enjoyed this post
with a glimpse of life on the Mobile Bay coast

Friday Favorites

Hi! Happy Friday!

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Let’s start with a training update and then I’m going to share some Friday Favorites.

Here is what my training has looked like so far this week:

Monday: 19 mile LR
Tuesday: 7 Easy + RW group run (6 miles @ 7:40 avg.)
Wednesday: 7 Easy
Thursday: 9.25 w/ 4 tempo miles + 4.75 easy
Friday: 12 Easy

I was supposed to do my long run last Sunday, but after we got back from the beach I had a hard time adjusting back to post-vacation running reality. I was worn out and the long run didn’t happen. I’m sure skipping it all together would’ve been totally fine, but this was the last “long” (relative terminology of course) run on my schedule before the 50K. I decided to give it a whirl again on Monday. Rebecca and I ran 8 together and then I did the rest of the run by myself. I kind of did a run/walk combo, but I got it done.

So speaking of the 50K … It’s NEXT WEEKEND! Ahh. Rebecca and I are doing a 100K relay in Jackson MS and each of us will run 50K. The course is a 10.3 mile loop and we will just run that same loop several times. We are going to do alternating loops, so Rebecca will run the first 10 miles, then I will run the next 10, and so on until we have each done 3 loops.

We are hoping for an 8:30 (ish) average pace. The total race should take us somewhere between 8 and 9 hours. The team that runs the fastest last lap (regardless of whether you finish first or not) wins $100, so obviously that would be pretty sweet. Hopefully that’ll help us pace ourselves on the other laps as well and finish with a really strong leg (and legs (get it?)).

I’m not really worried about the mileage as much as I am a little apprehensive about what running at 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. is going to be like (in July in Mississippi no less). I am used to running at 5 a.m. and 5 or 6 p.m., but not really during those in between times. We are definitely going to pack a cooler full of all.the.drinks and a tent for some shade.

Enough about that. Tuesday morning my legs were pretty tired from the long run the day before. I was [thisclose] to not going to the group run that evening, but I ended up having a really good run. The same exact thing happened last week. It’s crazy! I slept in Wednesday morning and was [thisclose] again to not running at all, but Daniel wanted to go after work and I figured that I might as well join him. You never regret a run, right? You only regret it if you don’t go.

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We were going to do 5 miles, but ended up with 7. My legs pretty much felt like garbage during the run, but of course I was still so glad that we got it in! If you are a runner you likely get it, and if you aren’t you likely think that sounds absurd. Running in the evenings after work is the best time that we have to talk and catch up on how the day went.

I described Thursday’s tempo workout in my last post, but ICYMI: I did a 3 mile warm up, a 4 mile tempo at 6:24 average and a 2.25 mile cool down. My legs felt surprisingly good! Thursday evening I met Rebecca for an easy 4.75 miles, so I ended up with 14 for the day.

Rebecca and I did 12 miles this morning. We were both pretty tired from our Thursday workouts, but we managed to make it through.

Now that we’ve covered the run stuff, let’s move on to the fun stuff! Here are some things that I am loving lately …

Brooks Lauch. I have found my shoe. I have worn the Launches on and off for several years, but lately they have become my go-to shoe 95% of the time. My feet haven’t been bothering me at all and I think that a lot of that has to do with these shoes.

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Birkenstock Mayari Sandals. These are my go-to non-running shoes. I love how they mold to the contours of your feet. They are known to guide your foot into a healthy walking position, delivering exceptional comfort in every step. I wear these to work (or basically anytime that I am not running). After dealing with plantar fasciitis for so long, I refuse to wear heels or wedges anymore. It just isn’t worth it.

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Chick-Fil-A diet lemonade. So tart, so refreshing! I been craving lemonade after hot runs. We hit up Chick-Fil-A Tuesday evening after our run and I got my fix.

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Pop-Tarts. Daniel has gotten me on pop-tarts recently. I don’t remember eating them growing up or really ever for that matter. If I am still hungry after dinner (which obviously means I haven’t eaten quite enough that day), I have been eating pop-tarts. Not exactly the healthiest of snacks, but they hit the spot and satisfy the need for calories and the desire for something sweet.

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Aveeno wipes. I love these face cleaning wipes. I like to wipe my face off with these after running. They have aloe in them and they feel great on your skin.

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I guess that was kind of a random assortment, but those are a few of my favorite things right now!

What are your favorite running shoes?

Extraordinarily Ordinary

Hey friends! I’m bringing you a little something different today.

I always enjoy reading “Day in the Life” posts. A couple of the bloggers that I follow did these type of posts this week and I realized that I’ve never done one myself before. It’s time to remedy that! I like seeing little glimpses into other people’s lives. There is something about seeing the ins and outs of another person’s daily life that makes me feel connected to them in a deeper way even though they are a random stranger on the internet.

Hopefully you will enjoy this little glimpse into an ordinary day in my life. Besides, I think that the daily grind of ordinary days helps to prepare us for the extraordinary days!

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4:40: Hello, world!

The alarm goes off, but I promptly hit snooze. Not quite ready yet, world! After the one snooze, I was ready to at least begin the wake up process, which involves reading my devotional and a quick scroll through social media.

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I usually sleep in my running clothes (well, except for the shoes … that would be weird), so once I get myself out of bed, get my teeth brushed and put my eyes (contacts) in, I’m ready to go.

5:00 – 6:30: Let’s Run!

We usually start running between 5:00 and 5:15. Today I had a workout to do and Daniel decided to sleep in, so I hit the treadmill. The workout called for a 3 mile warm up, a 4 mile tempo with a goal range of 6:15 to 6:25 pace and a 3 mile cool down.

I like to ease into my treadmill workouts. For the warm up I start at 10:00 pace and every 2 minutes I increase the speed my 0.2 mph. Basically this turns the warm up into a little mini-progression run. My warm up miles were 9:00, 7:48, 7:18. By that point, my legs were awake and ready to go! I averaged 6:24 for the tempo miles, which was right within the goal range. I definitely had to work hard to hit that.


I cut the cool down a little bit short. I was DONE and just really ready to be off of the treadmill! Side note: I am pretty sure that is possibly one of the sweatiest runs that I’ve done. I had to wring out my socks afterwards. That doesn’t happen to me very often.

6:30 – 7:20: Randomness at Home

Lots of random tasks go down between 6:30 and 7:30. Things like post-run hydrating (I drank 20 oz. of water with 2 Nuun tablets this morning) and caffeinating, making the bed, updating my training log, playing with Brooks, checking emails, etc. Daniel always showers first (oh the joys of one bathroom apartment living) It takes me about 20 minutes to get ready for work, so as long as I am in the shower by 7:00, I’m good to go. Low maintenance #forthewin.

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I don’t know that anyone has ever told me that my curly hair specifically looks good, but I go with a “hope for the best” outlook.

7:30: Breakfast

Breakfast is not a fancy meal at our house. Let’s face it … none of our meals are really very fancy. If it can’t be prepared in the crock pot, in the microwave or on the grill, it doesn’t get prepared. Thankfully, Daniel and I are on the same page with this. We eat to live, not live to eat. We eat what I would consider to be a fairly healthy (i.e., clean) diet, but we aren’t perfect (obviously) … we definitely splurge on not so healthy options every now and then. Moderation is truly the key.

Disclaimer: I think that food is something that I will always have to be mindful and cognizant of. It is easy for me to slip into bad (i.e., disordered) habits when things get stressful or life feels out of control. Daniel does a really good job of reining me back in. I have a decent amount of nutritional knowledge, but I am by no means a professional. I am not giving nutrition advice or telling you how you should eat. I have found what works for me. Everyone has a different definition of “healthy” and different things work for different people … #findyourhealthy #comparisonisthethiefofjoy #differentstrokesfordifferentfolks.

Where were we? Ahh, yes. Breakfast.

Greek yogurt with oats and raspberries (one of my all-time favorite fruits) and a side of G2 (actually it is a Sprite zero & G2 mixture). Simple and nutritious. I also take a calcium supplement with breakfast. Daniel typically does a protein shake, a pop-tart or a stop at Chick-Fil-A.


7:45 – 8:00: Drive to Work

I had the added pleasure of stopping by Coffee Loft on my way to work this morning, because I was working at a client’s office and Coffee Loft just happened to be right on the way. It was basically a mandatory stop.

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Typically I just drive straight to our office, which is about a 15 (on a good day) to 20 minute drive. It’s not a bad commute at all and it gives me a chance to call my mom and chat for a few minutes each day.

8:00 – 10:30: Work

For any new readers or those that don’t know me well, my day job is in public accounting. I am a CPA. I have a master’s degree in tax accounting, so the majority of what I do at work revolves around taxes (preparing and reviewing tax returns, tax planning, responding to tax notices, etc.). Summer is a slow time of year for us tax folks, so I only work part-time during the summer months. Business tax returns that are extended are due September 15th, so that is the next deadline that we are working towards currently.

10:30: Snack

My stomach started to get a little rumbly mid-morning. I always seem to be hungrier on workout mornings. Luckily I brought some snacks for just such an occasion.

The nectarine was not quite as good as I was hoping that it would be, but oh well.

10:30 – 12:00: Work

Noon: Lunch

We had an internal meeting at work today and lunch was provided. We had homemade chicken salad on croissants and it was so good! Daniel and his co-workers go out for lunch pretty much every day, but I usually try to take my lunch with me. We don’t have a lot of great lunching options nearby, so it is easier just to take it with me. I usually eat pretty quickly and keep working anyway.

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12:00 – 4:30: Work

Our meeting lasted for a pretty long time, so the afternoon flew by. I worked on a few returns after that until it was time to go. Thursday is my Friday, so leaving work on a Thursday afternoon is the best feeling!

4:30: Snack

Quest bars are my go-to afternoon snack. I love them! They have 20 grams of protein and they are very satisfying.

5:00: Let’s Run (Round 2)!

I don’t run in the evening every day by any means, but my coach has two to three double run days built-in to my schedule each week. It seems like I usually get two doubles in, but rarely get three. The evening runs are usually very easy, recovery type runs. I met Rebecca right after work and we did 4.75 miles. I ended my run at .25 that morning and I wanted to even that out. I might have some slight traces of OCD. I usually make Rebecca run around the parking lot until my watch beeps for 5 miles, so she was thankful that we didn’t have to do that this time.

She pushes the stroller and we just chat about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

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We had a good run and we hung out and chatted for a while after we got done.

6:00: Head Home

6:30 – 8:00: Randomness at Home (Round 2)

Brooksy greeted me at the door with a wet nose and puppy kisses and Daniel and I caught up on our day. He had an appointment after work with Dr. Justin (his piriformis is still being a literal pain in his butt) and after that he went out for a ride on the motorcycle and played with Brooks. I was really excited to discover that my RRCA certificate and my MPR business cards had come in the mail.

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After a shower (round 2), I worked on the blog for a while with the Tour de France on in the background. The sun went down at 7:50 and it was a really good one. The pictures do not do it justice at all. It was just like the Kenny Chesney song … a “big orange ball, sinkin’ in the water.”

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8:00: Dinner

By 8 I was getting hungry. I made myself a turkey “wrap” (turkey, cheese, pickles and spicy mustard on a flat bread) and had some chips and a sweet potato on the side.

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Daniel had peanut butter, nutella and banana sandwiches with string cheese. Like I said … low maintenance. I take an iron supplement and vitamin C with dinner. I also had a big glass of chocolate almond milk.

8:30 – 9:30: Relax and Get Ready for Bed

We spend a little bit of time watching TV each evening. Our latest Netflix series is One Tree Hill. Neither of us have seen it before and it’s been pretty good so far. I’m snacking on a dark chocolate sea salt bar. I like to have a sweet snack before bed. Daniel is snacking on some Noosa (Australian yogurt) and applesauce. I also spend some time reading blogs in the evenings before bed.

9:30: Light’s Out!

Brooks says, “I can’t take it anymore.” He must’ve had a rough doggie day. Maybe I can get him to do a guest “day in the life” post one day!? Either that or we can just go see The Secret Life of Pets. It looks so cute.

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Whew. That’s a wrap. It was a fun, busy day. I hoped you enjoyed following along.

How was your day? Did you eat anything delicious or nutritious?

The Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Dayz of Summer

Hi! We are home from a short but wonderful family beach trip.

We live less than an hour from the gulf and we headed down Thursday morning to meet Daniel’s family. His older sister, Michele, and her husband, Brett, were celebrating their 2 year anniversary. They got married at the beach 2 years ago and we got to celebrate with them and their daughter, Ava, again this time around. We were really happy to be able to join them.

Here is the whole gang!

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We got lots of baby snuggles. Here is Uncle Daniel looking like a pro …

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We got to relax on the beach. Here is Baby Ava looking like a pro …

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The view from our condo was great! We got to watch the storms roll in Thursday evening.

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We went to dinner at LuLu’s (the same place as the 5K that I did a few weeks ago). It was weird being there to eat and not to run.

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After dinner we went out for ice cream. I had to buy a sweatshirt because I was FREEZING! Does eating or drinking cold things make anyone else cold?!

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We caught a beautiful rainbow in the sky!

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Friday morning Daniel and I got up semi-early (not normal weekday early, but vacation early) to do my workout. I had a 10 mile run with 5 easy followed by 5 “brisk” (slightly slower than marathon pace) miles. Daniel’s dad rode the bike with us while we ran.

We averaged 7:42 for the entire run and averaged 7:04 for the brisk portion. The goal range was 6:50 t0 7:00 pace, so we were pretty close. I was planning to give myself a 5 – 10 second “vacation” cushion anyway, so we were spot on! Haha.

Gotta get that post-workout sweaty selfie …

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A few laps around the lazy river made us feel a ton better!

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Seriously, the lazy river is where it’s at! I could’ve floated around that thing all day. Unfortunately it gets super crowded as the day goes on, but when we finished our run we basically had it to ourselves. We “raced” around the river (Daniel won … ugh) and stood on the jets to massage our sore feet. I’m pretty sure that is what post-run recovery is supposed to look like.

Miss Ava joined us at the lazy river later that morning.

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We relaxed by the pool and I finished up the book I was reading.

Speaking of this book … I read Fast Girl: A Life Spent Running from Madness, a book about former Olympian, Suzy Favor Hamilton, and her struggle with anxiety during her running career and the mental illness that she suffered from. The book is both fascinating and disturbing. I respect her for writing this and bringing much-needed attention to mental illness in general and the pressure on athletes (at the high school, collegiate and professional levels).

According to a Runner’s World article about the book, “In the years after her retirement from professional running, Favor Hamilton, 47, says she struggled with anxiety, marital difficulties, and postpartum depression after giving birth to daughter Kylie in 2005. After coming close to suicide, she sought medical help and was placed on antidepressants. Favor Hamilton candidly discusses her intentional fall during the 1500-meter final at the 2000 Olympic Games, her brother’s suicide, how she came to be a high-end escort in Las Vegas (with the knowledge of her husband, Mark Hamilton), and being diagnosed with bipolar disorder.”

The book is traveling around my group of running friends (I think 5 or so of us have read it at this point) and it’s still got some circulating to do. I’ve been joking that it is like the sisterhood of the traveling prose.

After a nice afternoon nap (running + being out in the sun all morning will wear you out), it was time for dinner.

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We enjoyed more baby cuddles and more ice cream …

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Saturday morning I met Lizzie to run. She lives really close to where we were staying and it was wonderful to get a run in with her! We had lots to catch up on. One of those things being that crazy book! Haha. She is the one that passed it to me. Jessica … you’re up!

We didn’t have to worry too much about whether or not little Brooksy was okay or not because Dog Ranch posts pictures of all of the dogs playing and we saw that he was living it up!

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My friend Joy pointed out that he was obviously an only child. He doesn’t seem to be too concerned with sharing that pool with the other pups. He likely learned that from his mom.

It was a quick trip, but it was really nice to spend some time with Daniel’s family. We are happy to be home and cuddling with our fur baby now. Thankfully, he seems to have had a wonderful vacation himself and he also seems to be feeling much better than he was when we left.

We are all worn out! Having fun is hard work!

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I hope you are all having a great weekend! Talk to you soon!

 

On Track

Hey guys!

It’s been a stormy couple of days here on the Gulf Coast. The goods news is that it seems to have brought us a little mini-reprieve from the heat (meaning that it has been in the upper 70s at 5 a.m., instead of mid 80s). The last few weeks were pretty intense, so this week has actually been quite wonderful. We’ll take anything we can get at this point.

We are headed to the beach for a couple of days [insert happy dance], so I want to go ahead and get a quick recap in before we leave. Here is what the week has looked like so far:

Monday: Easy 8 + Easy 5
Tuesday: Track + RW group run
Wednesday: Easy 8
Thursday: Easy 8 

It’s pretty much just been easy running, except for Tuesday. Tuesday morning we hit the track for #TrackTuesday. My workout was 12 X 400 with a goal range of 82 – 84 seconds per lap (i.e., 5:28 – 5:36 per mile). I made the mistake of mentioned to my coach that there was a 2 mile race coming up in August that I wanted to “race,” and in return this fast repeat workout showed up on my schedule. Lovely.

I’ve done 400 meter repeat workouts plenty of times in the past, but I don’t ever remember having a goal pace quicker than 6:00 per mile (90 seconds per 400). I was pretty intimidated by the goal pace range that he gave me this time. I didn’t know if I would be able to hit those times or not, but I knew I had to try.

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Daniel and Jessica did the 400 workout with me and Rebecca came to the track with us, but she had a different workout to do (a workout for a 50 mile race looks quite a bit different than a workout for a 2 mile race). Even though we weren’t all running the exact same times or doing the same workout, having them out there with me was really nice because 1) you have more accountability to finish your workout when others are there with you and 2) it’s nice to have a few kind words of encouragement while you are out there working your tush off.

The workout went better than I was expecting! It took me a few repeats to find and settle into the goal range, but once I did, I was fairly consistent with the remainder of the workout. Here is what it actually looked like:

2 mi. WU, 12 X 400 (86, 86, 85, 85, 84, 83, 84, 84, 84, 85, 84, 84), 2 mi. CD

As you can see, the first four were slower than my goal range (granted not by much, but still …). I’m glad that I didn’t give up and stayed with it long enough to actually give myself a chance. Track workouts are tough mental workouts and this one was definitely a test of mental and physical strength.

I finally downloaded the FitSnap app, so that I can make pretty little pictures from my workouts. Check it out …

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Fancy, right? Haha.

I was in a weird mood Tuesday evening and I thought about not going to the group run at the store. I usually enjoy group runs, but every now and then after work I just really don’t feel like talking or being social. Tuesday was a weird day at work because we lost power for several hours and weren’t able to get much done. I’m sure that probably contributed to my weird mood.

Since Daniel was going, I decided to go ahead and go as well. I am really glad that I did because I had a great run. Isn’t that crazy? Going into it, I was not feeling it at all, but once I started running, I felt really good and I settled into a strong rhythm. I ran with Daniel and the guys, which was great because I was working kind of hard to keep up and I didn’t really have to make small talk (mostly because I couldn’t). There was a pack of about 6 or 7 of us and I kind of got lost in my own thoughts, just listening to the sound of our footsteps.

We did 6 miles at a 7:30 average, which is definitely faster than my normal “easy” pace (which ranges from 8:00 to 9:00 minutes per mile, at least in the summer). I probably shouldn’t have pushed the pace that evening after doing a workout that morning, but I felt good so I just went with it.

Luckily I had some flexibility with my schedule this week and so I gave myself two easy days to properly recover before my next workout, which will be a brisk pace run. I was supposed to do that today, but we are going to do it tomorrow instead. Hopefully it will be followed with some beach running or walking! I can’t wait.

I think Brooks must’ve known that we were going to be leaving, because he got sick Wednesday. I got a text from the lady that checks on him mid-day while I was at work yesterday and she told me that he had gotten sick and that she thought he might have gotten overheated. I decided to take him to the vet yesterday afternoon, just to make sure that he was okay. I would’ve hated to leave for a few days if he was really sick.

She said that she didn’t think we needed to take him to the vet, but I just wanted some reassurance. Yes … I am an overprotective doggie mom. Thankfully we got the A-OK from the vet. This doesn’t look like a sick puppy, does it? He loves a good car ride.

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I know he will be in good hands while we are gone and I am so glad to know that he is healthy.

Alright kids, it’s time for me to finish packing and head out. You can follow along on Instagram for vacation updates!