Holiday, Running


Hey friends! Happy Monday!

We are in Destin and headed home tomorrow morning. Let’s back up …

We spent the weekend in Destin, Florida. Daniel went to an allergy conference to get some continuing education hours in and I was more than happy to tag along! I mean, I can think of a lot worse things than being *forced* to go to the beach for a long weekend. He was only in class from 8 to 12 Saturday and Sunday, so it wasn’t bad at all. We tacked an extra day on to the trip and stayed all day Monday and Monday night as well.

Speaking of continuing education, I’ve got to get on that myself here soon as well. I’ve got to get 24 more hours for the year before September 30th. My CPE will consist of me sitting in front of a computer all day watching webinars. Not quite as glamorous as a conference at the beach.

Daniel worked half a day Friday and then we packed up, dropped Brookser off at the doggie spa and headed to Destin.

Friday night we went to a “meet and greet” with the other doctors, nurse practitioners, medical reps, etc. that were attending the conference. Lots of small talk. My favorite! Ha. It wasn’t really that bad. Daniel knew a couple of people, which made it nice.

After the meet and greet we went to dinner with one of the doctors that Daniel works with and a couple of the medical reps that call on their office (I think that is the correct terminology, but I’m not completely sure). I do know that I was the only person at the dinner table not in the medical field. We went to Seagar’s, which is a fancy steak and seafood restaurant.

A little piece of me died when I saw the prices on the menu. Whoa. I just don’t understand spending lots of money on a fancy meal. I know that a lot of people enjoy and appreciate it, but I am definitely not one of those people. Give me a bowl of cereal and I’m perfectly content. Spending money on running clothes … now that’s something I can get behind and totally support! To quote Daniel, “I don’t claim to make sense all of the time.”

In the spirit of rolling with it, I ordered a $50 8 oz. filet. Eek. I don’t even know who I am anymore. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t delicious though.

This was without a doubt the most expensive meal that we’ve ever had, but it was very good and I guess it’s okay to splurge every now and then. The chocolate soufflé that we ordered for dessert was just the proverbial icing on the cake.

Our fancy-smancy dinner lasted until almost 11 p.m., so by the time we got back to our room and to bed it was after midnight. Again, this is highly unusual in our world. We like to be in bed by 9 at the latest. When you wake up at 4:30 to run, you pretty much have to be in bed at a decent (read: grandma) time. We had good intentions of running Saturday morning before Daniel had to go to class, but we both opted for extra sleep.

In fact I didn’t get up until after 9 Saturday morning. Our room was so dark and cozy that I didn’t really even want to get up then. I just hung out and watched the Olympics for most of the morning while Daniel was in class. It was glorious!

After being inside all morning, Daniel and I were both ready to get out and do something once he was done with class. Get out and do something = go running! We ran. 8 miles. At noon. In August. In Florida. I don’t necessarily recommend this. This is one of those do as I say, not as I do things. I kept thinking to myself (and also said out loud), “I’m so glad Rebecca and I decided not to do that relay last weekend!” We would’ve been running mid-day and that would have been brutal.

Side note: Did I tell y’all that only one team finished the relay? Yikes.

There were several good loops and running paths near our hotel. Of course Daniel already knew this because he had scoped the area out on Strava before we got here and he had some segments that he wanted to go for. Saturday afternoon we ran over to Baytowne Wharf and ran two of the segments (a 3.1 mile loop and a 2 mile loop). He wanted to make sure that the segments registered correctly on Strava before he tried to chase them down the next day.

He did in fact get the “Clockwise Baytowne Loop” segment in 20:39 (6:35 pace). King of the mountain (it’s a Strava thing)!

I kind of feel like Strava is a runner’s version of Pokémon Go. You go out and try to collect all the segments. Although I don’t know that I really understand Pokémon Go at all, so I could be totally off base with that comparison. I’m pretty sure that we did almost get run over by a couple of teenagers on bikes who were playing Pokémon Go while we were running though. I do know that they weren’t paying attention to where they were riding, but I’m unsure of the actual reason for the distraction. I’m going to blame it on Pokémon.

I hung back and tried to just survive take in the scenery. The run was pretty enjoyable, but I definitely didn’t have that “I LOVE RUNNING” feeling that I usually have on a run. There was a decent amount of shade though, so that definitely helped.

This is not one of the shaded places …


After our run we headed to the pool for a little bit to relax.

We found two chairs together (which is a feat in and of itself) with one in the shade for Daniel and one in the sun for me. It was a beautiful day!

I enjoyed reading the Runner’s World Olympics viewer guide and Daniel enjoyed a little cat nap. Once we came back inside from the pool, I was drained. The sun will definitely do that to you. I got a proper nap (i.e., in the bed) before dinner while Daniel read.

We opted for a more low-key dinner Saturday night and we ate outside by the pool. We got a tuna dip appetizer and I also got tuna for my meal. Tuna is one of my favorites, especially when cooked well (i.e., medium rare … how’s that for an oxymoron). I’m not sure when I decided to turn this into a food blog. It’ll be short-lived I promise. Vacation eats are so much more exciting than everyday eats. The tuna was delicious.

I decided to hit the beach for a few miles Sunday morning while Daniel was in class. I LOVE running on the beach! It feels so free and peaceful out there. I also feel totally safe. I don’t have that feeling very often when running by myself, but for whatever reason when I am on the beach I feel totally comfortable and not on edge at all.

I ended up running 4 miles one way and then 4 miles back for a total of 8 miles on the beach. After the first mile, I didn’t see a single person for several miles. It was just me, my thoughts and the birds.

I hated to miss my usual Sunday morning group run with the girls (especially because 1) Lizzie made an appearance and 2) they sent me a picture of all of their yummy Coffee Loft drinks (and I got the picture while I was about halfway into my run and I would’ve gladly welcomed any sort of beverage)), but I spent some quality time with the gulls. I couldn’t resist. Major cheese factor.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with the beaches along the Gulf Coast, they aren’t like the hard-packed beaches on the East Coast. They are so beautiful, but so tough for running. My feet basically sunk a couple of inches into the sand with each step. I struggled to keep my pace under a 10 minute mile.

I wasn’t worried about my pace, but I also couldn’t help but wonder how much the sand affects it. It’s kind of like running in windy conditions, or humid conditions for that matter. There is a lot of added resistance, so you are working a lot harder than the data shows at the end of the run. I wish there was a sand adjustment pace calculator. I’m sure my “suffer score” would’ve been pretty high.

My Garmin told me that I needed 56 hours to recover from the beach run.

Speaking of … Does anyone else with a newer, built-in heart rate model Garmin get crazy recovery times after your run? Daniel’s typically tells him that he needs 12 hours or something like that, but mine is always a lot longer. It has even told me that I need 3 days. I don’t really know exactly what it is using to come up with that information. Sounds like a good research project for a later time though.

I left that paragraph for a little bit and of course then I couldn’t resist, so I just did a quick Google search. Apparently it seems that the recovery time is a suggestion of how long to wait before the next hard training session, so the next stress workout, not the next easy run, which makes more sense. Sometimes it will tell me that I need 3 days to recover and then 3 hours later it’s all like, “MOVE.” I mean, which one is it? Get it together Mr. Garmin.

It also supposedly factors in cumulative fatigue and overall training stress, but I am still a tad skeptical as to the validity of this calculation … mainly because I can’t find anything that tells me the actual calculation. There has to be a formula of some sort … I will find it and I will let you know.

Oh well … so since my watch told me I needed to recover, I listened and Sunday afternoon we did something that we haven’t done since our Honeymoon … we got a couples massage! We both opted for the deep tissue sports massage and loved it. Sometimes I enjoy a nice massage and sometimes not so much (there’s just something a little odd about strangers touching you), but this was nice. It was a little intense at times, in a hurts-so-good sort of way, but I know that it helped flush the lactic acid out of my muscles. We were able to use the spa beforehand and afterwards too, so we both took advantage of the steam room, sauna and hot tub for a little bit. Lots of relaxing and recovery!

Sunday evening we decided to go to the outlets for a little bit. Unfortunately, all the stores closed at 7 and we didn’t get there until about 6:45 so we only had time to go to one store. We got some frozen yogurt and headed back to the hotel. Daniel ordered a 16 inch pizza for lunch that day and had plenty of leftovers (go figure). We happily ate pizza and watched more of the Olympics. I can’t wait for the running events!

This morning we did our 8 mile route again, but ran the loops (the 3.1 mile loop and 2 mile loop) backwards. Daniel was done with his classes at this point, so we were actually able to get out there at a decent time (i.e., not noon). The humidity was higher in the morning, but the heat wasn’t quite as oppressive. It’s almost like you have to pick your poison on the summer runs, go super early and battle the humidity or go later in the day and battle the heat. Regardless, all of the battles we fight will make us stronger for our fall races!

Ahh, fall. Not too much longer! I really think I felt some cool breezes this weekend (that could’ve just been me hallucinating in the heat though), reminding me that fall is just around the corner.

After our run today we decided to go (aka, I convinced Daniel to join me) for a walk on the beach. The water felt great!

I want to call it a mini-ice bath, but the water wasn’t really cold enough to justify it being an ice bath. I just really don’t like those things, so that was about as close as I get to an ice bath. Works for me.

Later this afternoon we explored the Baytowne Wharf area (while not running for a change).

I think Olympic gymnastics might be to blame for this, but I have been going on and on to Daniel about how I really want to go to the new indoor trampoline center, The Factory, in Gulf Shores. They have 12,000 square feet and over 50 trampolines. I’ve seen lots of photos of kids (and some adults) playing there and it looks like an absolute BLAST! I was able to get my trampoline fix in (at least temporarily) at Baytowne. I still want to go to The Factory soon though.

When we got over there, I saw that they had a bungee trampoline and that was it. I HAD to do it. I’ve never been on one of those things, but always thought that they looked fun. I loved jumping on the trampoline as a kid, but this was like a trampoline on steroids! I don’t know how high I was flying, but it felt really high. I loved it. I want to do it again. Right now. I might be one of those adrenaline junkie types.


After the bungee excursion, my trip was made. Goals met. Life complete.

We walked around and looked in some shops (mainly just to get out of the heat), but it was so stinking hot that we didn’t last too long on the shopping.

We enjoyed our dinner by the pool so much Saturday night that we decided to do that again tonight. It was the perfect ending to a wonderful vacation!

We are headed home in the morning and I am running a 2 MILE RACE tomorrow evening! Woo hoo. We shall see how a post-vacation race goes.

I’d love to hear your feedback on the Garmin recovery data if you have any! What ranges have you seen?

2 thoughts on “Destin-ation”

  1. IT looks like you had an amazing time at the beach! Hooray for a beach trip and doesn’t sound like Daniel had to be in class that long so you guys had tons of time to hang out. That meal looks great but I’m like you, I don’t like fancy meals. Clay and I went out to Circa 1886 last year and it’s one of the fanciest restaurants in town. I felt guilty because we drove back by an area called “tent city” where homeless live. I would rather just have reasonably priced good food… not saying put “junk” in my body but I don’t want a $50 dinner out when you can get dinner out for $20 that’s as good.

    My Garmin doesn’t provide recovery data although I think the estimate it gave you is definitely off! Recovery is important but i’ve always thought any recommended “recovery time” meant no hard workouts not that you were supposed to sit on your butt. I’ve always heard that one day for every mile raced thing but kind of think that’s BS unless you “go to the well” in a race. Still, I wouldn’t go around doing a speed workout the day after a 5K and could totally see someone skipping say, a track workout, if they raced a 10K or half the weekend before (truly raced. Not “ran a race”).

    I’m not surprised only one team finished that ultra… a lot of people probably opted not to go to the guy’s house to run it… I wouldn’t have!


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