September Recap

Hey-o!

October really snuck up on me and I have gotten behind with the regular scheduled programming around here. Work is going pretty well (better at least), but we are SUPER busy right now and will be for about two more weeks. I’m also LOVING Girls on the Run! We have practice two times per week for an hour and a half, which is great, but is also a bit of a commitment. Definitely worth it. Anywho, let’s recap the running for the month of September really quickly, shall we …

Month Recap: September 2017

Workouts: September was a fairly consistent month of building back some fitness after taking a short break in August. Each week seemed to have a good mix of speed, tempo and endurance workouts. September was the first month of the fundamental phase of marathon training. October will be another month of the same and then in November and December, we will move into the specific phase.

Here is what my September workouts looked like:

13 miles: LR @ 7:51 avg. 

8 miles: 15 X 1:00 on, 1:00 off

10 miles: 8 easy + 2 brisk (6:53, 6:42)

15 miles: LR @ 7:49 avg. 

12 miles: 2 mi. WU, 6 X 1 mile (6:24, 6:18, 6:20, 6:23, 6:22, 6:21), 2 mi. CD

10 miles: 2 mi. WU, 12 X 600 (2:17, 2:17, 2:18, 2:16, 2:16, 2:18, 2:21, 2:17, 2:21, 2:20, 2:23, 2:18), 2 mi. CD

10 miles: 8 easy + 2 brisk (6:58, 6:56)

17 miles: LR w/ 11 easy + 6 steady state (7:12)

8 miles: 2 mi. WU, 4 mi. tempo (6:56, 6:39, 6:31, 6:32), 2 mi. CD

10 miles: 10 X 30 seconds on, 1:00 off

17 miles: LR @ 7:58 avg. 

Favorite workout: In looking back over the workouts, none of them really stand out as a favorite, which isn’t to say that I didn’t enjoy any of them, but rather that I enjoyed several of them. I think the 6 X 1 mile @ tempo pace and them 4 mile tempo were probably two of the most enjoyable. I’m digging the tempo pace runs these days!

Races: I only did one race this month. Womp, womp. The next few months will be full of fun races though, so at least I’ve got something to look forward to. Daniel did his big race the last weekend of September too, so check out his recap (here) if you missed it.

Favorite Race: The Jubilee Race for Life 5K was a wonderful race! I love a local, hometown race and this race was exactly that!

Paces: The paces ranged from 6:11 (during the 5K) to 10:22 (during an easy, recovery run).

Total miles: I ran 287.75 miles during September. Woo!

Distances: My shortest run was 3 miles and longest run was 17 miles.

Strength work: Y’all. I am so proud of myself. I actually did a really good job of stretching and doing some strength stuff this month! I averaged 10 minutes a day, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but definitely adds up over time.

That’s all I’ve got for now … keeping it short and sweet today. I share more of the ins and outs of all of my workouts on my weekly recaps (which I also happen to be a little bit behind on at the moment … hopefully I can get last week’s up this evening). So, check those out (links are below) if you’d like to see more details.

08/28/17 – 09/03/17
09/04/17 – 09/10/17
09/11/17 – 09/17/17
09/18/17 – 09/24/17

I hope you guys have a great week!

 

August Recap

Hey-o! August is *almost* in the books. Of course that means that it is time to recap another month of running and randomness. We are (slowly) making our way closer to fall!

Month Recap: August 2017

The Running

Let’s just put it out there, running in August is ROUGH. I think we all feel like we should be acclimated to the heat at this point, but even if you are in great shape and are as acclimated as you can be, that likely still doesn’t mean that you will miraculously be able to run the same paces that you would in cooler, drier conditions. I know it will get better. It might take it another month or so, but it will.

Workouts: I planned my summer training schedule to end the second week of August and then I planned a couple of “down weeks,” which basically meant that I ran when I wanted to (or not!), without being tied to a training plan. In fact, my only workout of the month was this week (the last week of August).

10 miles: 5 easy (8:31) + 5 brisk (6:50)

Favorite workout: I reckon this goes to the [uncontested] 10 miler with the first 5 easy followed by the next 5 at a brisk pace. I really did enjoy this workout though (especially after 4 weeks without any workouts). We found a great 10 mile route for this run that (for the most part) allowed us to get the hills out of the way during the easy miles and that was nice and flat for the brisk miles. The Daniels (husband Daniel and Young Daniel) joined me for this workout, which made it so. much. better. I am very needy when it comes to workouts and I always prefer to have friends.

Races: I did a 5K and a 2 mile race in August. You can check out those recaps below if you feel so inclined.

Race Recap: Crime Prevention 5K

Race Recap: Chickasabogue Park 2 Miler

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Favorite Race: I enjoyed both of the races, but I’m going to go with the Chickasabogue Park 2 miler as my favorite. I do lots of 5Ks each year, but usually only one 2 miler. I’m digging the “odd” (not literally) distances lately.

Paces: My paces ranged from 5:44 (during the 2 mile race) to 11:21 (with Brooks).

Total miles: 274

Distances: My shortest run was 3 miles (done one day on my lunch break (I really just wanted to see if that was possible)) and my longest run was 18 miles (as part 1 of the birthday run).

Strength work: I’m officially committing myself to 10 to 20 minutes of a combination of strength work and stretching per day. I said it on the internet, so surely it will happen.

The Other Stuff

This portion of the post is just your typical A to Z list of random thing I am currently …

Anticipating: I want to say fall, but I know that is just a pat answer and let’s face it, we will not be seeing any glimpses of fall here in Lower Alabama for quite some time. I’m definitely looking forward to an extra day off work with the Labor Day holiday next week, so let’s go with that.

Buying: pop sockets. Random, but I had really been wanting a pop socket for my phone and while you can likely pick one of those up pretty much anywhere, I decided to make my purchase on Amazon. I did the purchase on my phone and I guess wasn’t paying as much attention to the actual details of what I was doing. Turns out that I purchased a pack of 9 pop sockets (for $9.99) AND it shipped from China, so my order that was placed August 7th has still not been delivered. I hate to say it, but this is not the fist time that I have unknowingly placed an Amazon order from overseas. Sad. Patience is not my virtue and the waiting kills me.

Considering: that the whole pop socket debacle would’ve been better placed under the anticipating category.

Discovering: Oprah’s podcast, SuperSoul Conversations. Very insightful.

Enjoying: a cup of hot lemon water. I’ve replaced one of my morning cups of coffee with hot lemon water (I know) and I’m really enjoying it. I love all things lemon.

Feeling: very content.

Going: to hop on the treadmill here in a few minutes because it is storming big time outside.

Hoping: that this rain stops soon! At least the rain seems to have cleared out of Texas. I can’t imagine what they are going through. Definitely thinking about and praying for everyone affected by Harvey.

Inhaling: all the guacamole. If it was possible to turn into an avocado, I would’ve definitely done it by now. Oh look!


Loving: the Bitmoji app! There is seriously a Bitmoji for every emotion you could possibly experience. I could go for entire days without using words in texts.

Missing: a time when I could walk outside and not get eaten alive my mosquitoes.

Noticing: joy in the little moments. I know that I mentioned Oprah’s podcast already, but I would highly recommend checking out her episode with Sheryl Sandberg. She talks about keeping a “joy journal” and jotting down random things each day that make you happy or bring you joy. I started doing this and it’s amazing. If you are focused on finding positive things throughout the day … you find positive things throughout the day. In a world with so much negativity, we can all use a reminder to focus on the positive!

I want to share one of my joy journal moments … one morning last week I was out running with Brooks (he’s doing a mile or so a couple of days a week and I’m thinking about maybe working him up to a 5K). We were out trotting along and we passed a man out walking his dog. The guy told me that he had never seen a happier dog and that it looked like Brooks was grinning from ear to ear as we ran. Y’all. I think my heart exploded a little bit. His comment meant so much to me (and yes, I am a little obsessed with my dog).

Obsessing: perfect segue! I’m obsessed with Brooks. He has his own Instagram account now (@instabrookser). If you like puppies, you need to follow it. I’m planning to document his training. It will partially be a parody of your typical “insta runner” training and partially just serious because I am obsessed with my dog and because I take tons of pictures of him anyway.

Isn’t he the CUTEST?!

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Planning: some fall races! Woo hoo! I’ve got my eye on several local races.

Questioning: when (if ever) it will actually start to feel like fall. Perhaps by mid-October? We shall see.

Reading: lots of continuing professional education materials. I managed to wait until the last week of August to even start on my CPE hours. I have to get 40 hours by September 30th, so yeah … some major procrastination went down this year. I honestly thought to myself, well maybe I should just let my license expire and then I’ll have to find a new job in a different line of work. Ha. It was a fleeting thought. I’d kick myself if I did that (and Daniel would likely kick me out of the house).

Saving: the date for the First Light Marathon!

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Thinking: that this is a good time to go for it and run another marathon. I’m giving myself until October to *fully* commit to the marathon. I know that if I do it, I need to be ALL IN (in order to reach my goals).

Using: too many brain cells to finish up this list.

Visiting: Augusta for Daniel’s HALF IRONMAN RACE in just a few short weeks.

Watching: Friends for like the hundredth time. We are having the hardest time finding a show to get into!

Xeroxing: I can not think of one thing that I need to make a copy of or that I made a copy of last month. Boo.

Yearning: to make a difference.

Zeroing: Same as last month, it’s really hard to come up with an Z word, so … zeroing means “closing out” for purposes of this post and with that, we are dunzo. Whew.

Alright … your turn! Tell me something you are anticipating or planning for the month of September.

How do you measure a year in the life?

Hey-o! Happy Friday! We made it!

Yesterday was the end of another fiscal year for me (i.e., my birthday), so I figured that it might be fun to look back and remember what all went on during the last year. I’m using Seasons of Love as my inspiration.

How do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
525,600 minutes. How do you measure a year in the life?
How about love? Measure in love. Seasons of love.

B-t-dubs … I used to be straight OBSESSED with this song. I’m pretty sure I listened to it on repeat until my brain exploded and I couldn’t handle it anymore. If I was going to measure a year in the life, I would definitely choose everything in the chorus above except for maybe midnights and strife, because let’s face it, I don’t see very many midnights per year and I don’t particularly care for controversy and conflict. Daylights (which I’m assuming to sunrises), sunsets, cups of coffee, miles, laughter and love seem like perfect measurements to me though. Let’s see how it stacked up!

Here are a few of my favorite daylights from the year …

Sunrises

I wish that I had more sunrise pictures to share. I love soaking in the stillness and peacefulness each morning in the moments before the sunrise and watching the sun come up as we run. Unfortunately, I don’t always have my phone at that time.

Here are a few of my favorite sunsets from the year ….

Sunset 1 Sunset 2

I have a slightly embarrassing number of pictures of coffee as well, but I’ll spare you the actual details there. I’m estimating 730 cups of coffee for the year. Most days I have two cups of coffee, some days it’s three and some days it’s only one, so I think an average of two is fairly accurate.

I ran 218,845,444 inches while I was 31. Ha. In case you don’t feel like doing the math on that, it’s 3,454 miles [feel free to insert the whole “I don’t put that many miles on my car in a year” joke here]. I also ran 21 races while I was 31. Hmm … I am sensing a new goal. Run your age in races per year. Who’s with me?!

Here’s what the race breakdown looked like (in case you are curious) …

1 mile: 1, 2 mile: 1, 5K: 8, 10K: 2, 12K: 1, 10 mile: 1, Half Marathon: 6 and 50K: 1

I won 16 of the 21 races, placed 2nd in one, 3rd in 3 and didn’t place in one. The majority of the races were very small, local races, so just take that with a grain of salt. I likely wouldn’t be winning any races if I lived … well probably anywhere else. Haha.

I don’t know how to objectively measure the rest of these things, but I do know that 31 was a year filled with lots of joy, laughter and love!

Misc 2Misc 1
Misc 3

I won’t say that the year was without struggles by any means. We’ve had several people close to us go through some rough stuff this year, which has been hard (especially when you don’t live in the same town). I would pretty much classify my career as a hot mess at this point as well, but ehh … it is what it is. It’s just a job and it’s not my life. One thing that I’ve been thinking about recently is that our struggles don’t define us, they refine us. If you are going through something hard, just keep your head up and know that you will be a stronger, wiser and more compassionate human once you get to other side.

To wrap up this “year in the life” post, let’s talk about how I celebrated turning 32 …

If you’ve been following along for a little while, you probably know about my birthday tradition. In the last few years, I started running my age in miles to celebrate my birthday. It’s become something that I really look forward to each year (strange, I know). For 30 and 31 I did the miles on the weekend (either right before or right after my birthday), but this year I decided to make things a little more interesting (i.e., challenging) and do the miles on my actual birthday, which fell on a Thursday.

I woke up at 3:30 a.m. (well … I think I snoozed once) and was running by 4! I did the first 8.5 miles on the treadmill. Brookser kept me company. Just after 5 a.m., I hopped off of the treadmill and ran 9.5 miles outside with the Daniels. They actually did 8 of the 9.5 with me and I decided to go ahead and squeeze in another mile and half just because I had a few extra minutes and I knew that any miles I could get done in the morning would only help to make the evening run a little easier. I ended the morning with 18 miles and I’m not going to lie, running 18 miles before work was oddly satisfying (like really satisfying … I kind of loved it).

I rehydrated and fueled like a champ during the day at work. I also wore compression shorts and socks under my regular clothes [I feel like that makes for a good “you might be a runner if” moments]. No one at work knew what I was doing (or that it was my birthday for that matter), so I felt like I was carrying out a covert mission and they were none the wiser. Side note: the spy shows might have gone to my head a little bit. I also pretty regularly check for tails in my rear-view mirror as I drive around town these days.

Rebecca met me after work Thursday afternoon and did the remaining 14 miles with me. I am so thankful that she was willing to do that because I really don’t know that I would’ve done it otherwise. We didn’t get started until close to 6:30 p.m. because the weather was terrible. We’re talking storms and torrential downpours. We tried to wait it out a little bit, but it became pretty evident that we were just going to have to suck it up and run in the rain, which is exactly what we did. 14 glorious, soggy, puddle-jumping miles later and it was done. 32 miles for 32 years! Phew.

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Thanks for following along! My blogging has been sporadic (at best), but it’s still a fun, creative outlet for me.

Talk to you soon!

July Recap

Hey-o! Happy August!

Month Recap: July 2017

The Running

Workouts: Every single workout that I did during July took place on the track. I hadn’t really realized this until I looked back and I would say that this might be the first month that I have done only track work. The month of July wrapped up what I coined the ‘summer of speed.’ Let’s face it, it’s much more realistic to train for a one and two mile race during the months of June & July than it is to train for a marathon. I enjoyed pushing myself and the challenging workouts, but I am also glad that this training cycle is wrapping up.

2 mi. WU, 6 X 1000 (3:48, 3:48, 3:44, 3:48, 3:55, 4:00), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 6 X 1 mile LT repeats (6:54, 6:46, 6:44, 6:36, 6:34, 6:28), 1.5 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 12 X 300 (61, 60, 62, 61, 63, 63, 60, 62, 62, 62, 61, 61), 2 mi. CD

1 mi. WU, 800 (2:41), 400 (75), Milk Mile (6:40), 1 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 4 X 1 mile repeats (6:01, 6:03, 6:00, 6:09), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 12 X 400 (80, 80, 81, 85, 85, 86, 87, 86, 90, 89, 91, 88), 2 mi. CD

Favorite workout: I really enjoyed the 12 X 300 meter repeat workout. 300s allow you to run pretty quickly and not feel completely destroyed at the end.

Races: The only official race that I did this month was the Fairground Road Mile Race. I also did a milk mile, but that was more just for fun than anything else (I realize that most people might not consider drinking 32 oz. of milk and running around in circles to be fun).

Favorite Race: The Fairground Road Mile was by far the best race of the month, if not of the year! I think this is my first PR of 2017. Whew! It was about time.

Paces: The paces ranged from 5:23 (one mile race pace) to 9:37 (recovery run pace).

Total miles: 279!

Distances: My shortest run was 3 miles and my longest run was 15.5 miles.

Strength work: I should likely just remove this category, although my coach mentioned that he might design a quick, easy strength program for me. I know that this is important and it’s just a matter of me making time for it! If left to my own devices, I will choose 10 to 15 more minutes of running over strength training every. single. time.

The Other Stuff

Please note: I came up with a new little A-Z template of random things to share each month. I was getting a little bit tired of the one I was using and wanted to step it up a notch. I might have stepped it up too many notches though.

Anticipating: Baby Olivia’s arrival! Any day now!

Buying: lots of Brooks running shoes! I got a couple of Launches for everyday wear and a pair of Flows for short workouts and races.

Considering: riding a bike. All this biking that Daniel is doing has me contemplating the idea myself. We’ll see.


Discovering: that it is okay to just say no if I don’t have time or don’t truly *want* to do something. No clue why it took me 31 (almost 32) years to figure this out.

Enjoying: the drier air. The humidity has been less than 100% in the last few days and it feels so good.

Feeling: a little sleepy and a little anxious, but for the most part, pretty happy.

Going: to work here shortly and to Mobile for a 5K this evening after work.

Hoping: to get some technology issues solved at work this week.

Inhaling: my first cup of coffee for the day.

Loving: the latest Little Big Town album.

Missing: there is about a 95% chance that my phone will go missing at some point during the day. I feel like I am losing my mind sometimes because I can lose just about anything in about 10 seconds flat.

Noticing: that I am so much more willing and likely to speak up when something is on my mind these days. Again, no clue why it took me 31 (almost 32) years to figure this out.

Obsessing: about finding balance. The irony is real.

Planning: some big life goals. Super vague. Sorry.

Questioning: how it is that the IAAF can conduct retroactive drug tests 10 YEARS after the fact. This is so bizarre to me. Don’t get me wrong, I am totally against cheating. I just have so many questions about this. How long do they keep the samples? How do they decide when to retroactively test?

Reading: Eligible by Curtis Littenfeld. If you’ve been reading along for a little bit, you’ve likely heard me talk about the I’ll Have Another Podcast. The host, Lindsey, has put together a book club and I’m planning to follow along as best as I can. I’m excited to dig into this modern-day Pride and Prejudice, which is one of my all-time favorites.

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Saving: so much money on gas! There is definitely something to be said for living and working within a mile of each other.

Thinking: that maybe 26 things was a lot to try to come up with.

Using: my mouse and keyboard. Lame, I know.

Visiting: Destin, FL this weekend!

Watching: Covert Affairs. We got into this series shortly after I asked for suggestions last month. It’s about a CIA operative and her missions. We’ve really enjoyed it.

Xeroxing: So yeah, hard to come up with an X word. I think they made a copy of my insurance card the last time I went to the doctor … cool story bro.

Yearning: for fall! I love summer, but it’s about time say peace out. I love the memories that come with the changing seasons.

Zeroing: Again, hard to come up with an Z word, so … zeroing means “closing out” for purposes of this post. Speaking of closing out, I think we are done here!

Have a great day! See you soon!

June Recap

Hey-o! Happy First of July!

Month Recap: June 2017

Workouts: I did lots of fun workouts this month! I’ve been focusing more on speed and shorter distances which means that track workouts are becoming fairly standard.

2 mi. WU, 6 X 800 (3:01, 2:58, 2:54, 2:53, 2:54, 2:54), 2 mi. CD

1 mi. WU, 8 X 400 w/ 200 float (1:28, 1:26, 1:28, 1:27, 1:27, 1:26, 1:26, 1:26), 3 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 4 X 1.5 mile (9:45, 9:41, 9:41, 9:41), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 5 X 1200 (4:38, 4:36, 4:32, 4:33, 4:37), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 16 X 200 (39, 42, 40, 40, 39, 39, 39, 40, 39, 40, 39, 38, 39, 40, 40, 39), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 4 mile LT tempo (6:27 average), 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 8 X 600 (2:13, 2:08, 2:10, 2:10, 2:11, 2:12, 2:12, 2:08), 2 mi. CD

Favorite workout: I think I am jumping on board with Daniel and the other guys we train with and am going to have to say that the 400/200 float workout was pretty cool! ICYMI, the workout is a 5K total. You start with a 200 and then you alternate between 400s and 200s, running at 5K pace for the 400s (8 of them) and 1 minute slower than 5K pace for the 200s. You have to stay mentally engaged and focused on your paces, but that keeps things interesting and the workout flies by.

Races: I ran  two 5Ks in May (one as part of the Grandman Tri Relay and the other one was Hot Trot) and one virtual half marathon (on the last day of the month might I add … cut it pretty darn close this time).

Favorite Race: Hot Trot! It’s always such a good time!

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Paces: Paces per mile this month ranged from 6:00 (the last mile of Hot Trot) to 9:08 (on an easy TM run). I did a lot of shorter workouts this month where I ran faster, but never for a mile consecutively.

Total miles: 272

Distances: Distances ranged from 3 miles to 13.1 miles. Prior to writing this post, I was fairly certain that I had done at least a few 16 milers, but nope. 12 miles in the summer *feels like* at least 16 I guess. Haha.

Strength work: Crickets …

Current blogs: Some new blogs that I recently discovered (via Lindsey Hein’s I’ll Have Another Podcast) are Piece of Cake Running (Mollie Turner) and Itsamarython (Mary Johnson).

Current music: Currently alternating between 90s on 9 and Pop2K on XM. They just don’t make music these days like they used to …

Current craving: Time with friends! It feels like it’s been a while since we’ve had some good quality friend time (it’s actually only been like 2 weeks … feels like forever).

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Current guilty pleasure: Going to bed before the sun. Not that I would have trouble doing this otherwise, but these long summer days make it even easier!

Current drink: I’ve been hitting the cherry limeade Nuun pretty hard these days. It’s one of the Nuun energy flavors, so I have cut down to one cup of coffee in the morning and then I fill my huge water bottle up with water and two Nuun energy tablets. I’m not sure if that means I cut down on caffeine or not. I would guess not, but I do feel better about myself for only having one cup of coffee, so I’m counting this as a victory.

Current food: Guacamole. I know I did avocados not too long ago as my favorite and this isn’t really any different, but y’all … seriously, I can’t. get. enough.

Current obsession: I am currently loving my new wet brush. Have y’all seen these things? A co-worker originally told me about them and my mom has one and they are absolutely incredible. If you have hair that tangles easily, you definitely need to get one of these. The humidity does some crazy things to my hair sometimes. I had this on my birthday wish list, but decided to go ahead and “splurge” and get it for myself (it was $9.99).

Current need: Show recommendations! So this isn’t a super critical need (obviously), but it’s a need nonetheless. We need a new show to get into on Netflix (we don’t have cable). We just finished Royal Pains, which was definitely one of our all time favorites. We also enjoyed White Collar, Suits, The Office, How I Met Your Mother, New Girl, etc. We prefer something semi-intelligent (not something you *really* have to think about, but not mind-numbing either … you know?), fairly funny and with no violence. Please let me know if you have any suggestions!

Current indulgence: Lunch dates with Daniel! For the first time, we both live and work in the same city (just a few miles apart) and it is so nice to be able to go out to eat together. For YEARS (and I do mean years), I never left the office for lunch. Turns out, it feels really good to get out for a few minutes, whether it is to meet Daniel or go home and play with Brooks!


Current bane of my existence: RAIN. Ugh. GO AWAY.

Current procrastination: Pinterest.

6ad95957da668477394f6ee42219b731.jpgCurrent confession: If you post something on social media on July 4th using the term ‘Merica, I am totally judging you (sorry, not sorry).

Current quote: “Wisdom is your perspective on life, your sense of balance, your understanding of how the various parts and principles apply and relate to each other.” – Steven R. Covey

Current excitement: The Tour de France starts today! We always enjoy watching the tour each year.

I hope you all have a wonderful, safe holiday weekend!

May Recap

Hey-o! How’s it going?

Can you believe that it is already June?! I really can’t. May flew by. I feel like I probably say that a lot, but this one felt exceptionally fast. May 2017 was definitely an exciting, fun-filled month! Daniel and I went to Colorado, I ran my first 50K, I went to the beach with my mom and got several good beach runs in.

Month Recap: May 2017

Shameless self-timer photo to follow …

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Workouts: The majority of the month was spent tapering and recovering from the 50K. I only did two workouts this month and both were last week.

2 mi. WU, 15 X 1:00 hard with 1:00 recovery, 2 mi. CD

2 mi. WU, 4 mile progression tempo (6:28, 6:17, 6:07, 5:54), 2 mi. CD

Favorite workout: My favorite workout this month was almost identical to my favorite workout last month. Last month it was a 2 X 2 mile progression workout and this month it was the 4 mile progression workout. On both occasions we happened to have really nice, cool mornings and we also had good groups at the track. I negative split each mile of both workouts and ran faster than I was supposed to (which rarely happens).

The moral of the story is that 1) cool weather is the best, 2) running with friends is the best and 3) starting races and speed workouts a little bit conservative with a goal of negative splitting is by far the best way to race and do workouts. There you have it folks … my secrets for achieving your best run.

Races: In May I ran the Greenland Trail 50K and a virtual half marathon.

Favorite Race: I really enjoyed the Greenland Trail 50K and all of the challenges that came with it!

Paces: My paces usually vary a good bit anyway (I’m all about keeping those easy days easy and working hard when the time comes), but this month the paces really varied! They ranged from 5:54 to 15:57. To be fair, the 15:57 was mile 27 of the 50K and it is highly likely that I did not actually run very much during that mile. My slowest mile outside of the race was 9:57 (which was my first run back from the 50K).

Total miles: 260

Distances: Distances ranged from 2.5 miles to 31 miles. Lots of variation here too! Haha.

Strength work: I slacked off of my stretching, core and upper body weights a little bit at the beginning of the month, but somewhat redeemed myself by going to two OTF classes and a hot yoga class later in the month.

Current book blog: I’m changing this category up a little for now. I read a lot more blogs than books and I love finding new running blogs to read. Some of my current favorites are (in no particular order):

Current music: Instead of music while running, I have really started getting into podcasts lately. I know that I am late to this party (as per usual (I’m definitely not an early adopter of things)). I really enjoy listening to the Ali on the Run Show by Ali Feller and I’ll Have Another by Lindsey Hein. Both of these are these are about running (because … duh!) and both of these ladies do a great job hosting their shows and I feel like I am right there running and talking with them. A lot of the guests are other bloggers that I read or used to read and I really enjoy hearing them talk and getting a glimpse into a slightly different side of their personalities.

Current craving: Something salty!

Current guilty pleasure: Sonic! It’s that time of year where all I really want after a hot, sweaty run is a ginormous drink from Sonic.

Current drink: This Bai Cocofusion beverage caught my attention at the gas station and I decided to give it a try. I really liked it!

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Current food: May was most definitely the month of the mudbug! I think we went to four crawfish boils in May. I am in the camp that thinks crawfish are too much work for not enough meat and so I only eat the sides (things like sausage, potatoes, corn, bell peppers, mushrooms, etc.), but man are those things good! The spicier the better!

The best thing about crawfish boils is definitely the time with friends! Little Miss Sassy Pants wanted me to pick one up (at least I think that’s why she kept sticking my hand into the bucket of live crawfish), but when I did, she wasn’t too sure!

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While we are talking about food, I feel like I should let the internet know that I also BAKED this month. I made 5 ingredient flourless banana bread (it was made with oatmeal) and it was delicious! Daniel really like it too.

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Current obsession: I am straight obsessed with this CamelBak Chute .75L water bottle. I fill it up twice during the day (usually with some Nuun) and I know for sure that I am getting at least 64 oz. of water per day. I drink more than just that, but this is a very easy way to make sure that I at least get the minimum amount in.

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Current need: I need a new cellular device. I’m having major issues with ringing vs. silent mode, speaker volume and notifications. In the meantime, I am just harder than usual to get in touch with (and I’m okay with that).

Current indulgence: Lululemon. Enough said.

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Current bane of my existence: During the month of May I had a literal pain in my neck on multiple occasions. I woke up super stiff several times and couldn’t really move my neck from side to side and I also pinched a nerve in my neck and in my shoulder. I don’t know what in the world is going on with all that (probably has something to do with my horrible posture while sitting at my computer), but it wasn’t fun. 

Current procrastination: I had very good intentions of trying to (at least loosely) follow the Fit by Jessica meal plans that we got at the scavenger hunt race in April. I am over two weeks behind this point and the only thing I have made from the meal plans is the banana bread that I mentioned above and some chia pudding that I added oatmeal to and turned into overnight oats (both of which turned out great!). I just struggle with making myself take time each day to cook things. Sigh.

Current confession: Sometimes I have to make the same mistake twice in order to truly learn from it.

Current quote: This isn’t really a famous quote or anything, but I’m digging the saying of “better an oops than a what if.” We all make mistakes and sometimes having just having the courage to try something new and take a risk is better than staying in a stagnant, comfortable place and never knowing what could’ve been. I’m trying to give myself grace for my “oopsies” this month.

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Current excitement: Well y’all, it’s Friday afternoon! I guess that counts as excitement enough for the time being.

Current companion: Basically this section is just an opportunity for me to show you the latest [adorable] picture of our little booger each month. We haven’t been letting him sit on our new couch (poor guy) and so he just sits at our feet and stares at us. Bless it.

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Sharing time: Give me a current confession or obsession!

April Recap

Hi, hey, hello!

How’s it going? Can you believe today is the last day of April? Me either!

Month Recap: April 2017

Workouts: There were several long runs and a few other workouts this month.

26 mile long run

Easy run w/ 10 X 1:00 pickups

2 mi. WU, 12 X 400 (ish) hill repeats (1:37, 1:35, 1:35, 1:34, 1:37, 1:37, 1:39, 1:39, 1:37, 1:36, 1:37, 1:38), 2 mi. CD

24 mile long run

2 mi. WU, 8 mile AT tempo (7:02, 6:53, 7:05, 7:04, 6:44, 6:40, 6:42, 6:44), 2 mi. CD

16 mile long run w/ fast finish (7:10, 7:01, 7:00, 7:13, 7:31)

2 mi. WU, 2 X 2 mile (6:36, 6:26, 6:07, 5:50), 2 mi. CD

Favorite workout: My favorite workout was the last workout of the month (and last workout before the 50K). It was a 2 X 2 mile progression workout. We had a really nice, cool morning (which unfortunately seem to be becoming few and far between) and we had a good group at the track. I negative split each mile (which was the goal of the “progression” part) and ended up running faster than I was supposed to (which rarely happens). Goal paces were 6:50, 6:40, 6:30 and 6:20 and actual were 6:36, 6:26, 6:07, 5:50.

I ran the first two mile set slower than the Daniels and so my mission on the second set was to catch them. Having someone to chase down definitely helped my motivation. I caught up with them with about one lap to go on the last mile of the second set. As soon as I caught up to them, they kicked it up a notch and left me in their dust. Nothing like a little friendly competition to make you run a little faster!

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Races: I ran the Gulf Coast Half Marathon in Pensacola this month and I also participated in the Race the Town Scavenger Hunt yesterday in downtown Fairhope.

While I didn’t do a “formal” recap of the scavenger hunt, I want to do a little “mini” recap here because it was so much fun! I wasn’t originally planning to do this event at all, but a few girls from our old small group had a team and one of the girls wasn’t able to do it. They needed a last-minute fill in and I was happy to do it. I honestly wasn’t entirely sure what I was getting myself into.

Each team received a clue book the day before the event and there were 15 clues or “stops” scattered throughout downtown. There was a bar code at each stop that you had to scan to get your assigned challenge and once you completed the challenge you got a stamp in your clue book. We did things like push ups, squats, jumping jacks, wall sits, etc. at each stop and the race ended up being just over 2.5 miles total.

One of the challenges was to take a selfie and post it to social media. There was a team right in front of us and when I saw them stop to take a selfie, I was like “c’mon girls … they’re stopping to take a selfie, we can totally catch them.” Turns out it was part of the race! Ha.

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The event was hosted by FIT by Jessica and benefited the Fairhope Education Enrichment Foundation (FEEF), which provides educational enrichment opportunities for students who attend Fairhope schools and the Baldwin County Foster & Adoptive Parents Association which provides care and resources to local foster and adopted children and their families.

It was a great event that supported great local organizations. We had a blast and ended up as the third place team! Our prize was three months of meal plans by FIT by Jessica (includes meal plan, recipes and shopping lists). I will take any and all help with meal planning that I can get. I’m pretty excited about that!

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Favorite Race: The Gulf Coast Half Marathon was one of my favorite races this year (not just this month)!

Paces: Paces ranged from 5:50 to 9:31.

Total miles: 336!

Distances: Distances ranged from 5 miles to 26 miles.

Strength work: I stayed pretty consistent with my stretching, core and upper body weights this month.

Current book: Baby Love by Rebecca Walker.

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Nobody freak out on me here (Mom, Dad, Daniel … I’m talking to you).

Here’s a little snippet: “Beneath the promise of “having it all” were mixed messages about motherhood: a woman risked being emotionally drained and intellectually stunted, losing herself in the process of caring for another. As Walker’s entertaining and insightful memoir attests, these messages created a new kind of struggle for many young women, and the decision to have a child became fraught with ambivalence.”

I’ve mentioned this a time or two, but having children is not something that I am 100% clear on (or even 50% clear on) and I have a lot of guilt about feeling this way, as there are so many people who yearn for children and struggle to have them. Throw in the fact that I am an only child and 1) my parents will not have grandchildren if we don’t have kids and 2) only children get a bad rap for being selfish and this just furthers my complex about that (as human beings we are all selfish, I get that).

The good news is that Daniel and I on the same page of ambivalence and we are still young.

Current music: I don’t typically download music to my phone, but every now and then I will hear a new song that I really like and I will buy it. This month I bought one song, “Warrior” by Demi Lovato. This song hit me like a ton of bricks when I heard it and I was immediately drawn to it. While I love an up tempo song as much as the next person, I also really love music that makes me *feel* something.

All the pain and the truth
I wear like a battle wound
So ashamed, so confused
I was broken and bruised

Now I’m a warrior
Now I’ve got thicker skin
I’m a warrior
I’m stronger than I’ve ever been
And my armor, is made of steel, you can’t get in
I’m a warrior
And you can never hurt me again

Out of the ashes, I’m burning like a fire
You can save your apologies, you’re nothing but a liar
I’ve got shame, I’ve got scars
That I will never show
I’m a survivor
In more ways than you know

Current craving: Sunshine and crisp air. It’s been overcast and overly humid (more than standard LA humidity) for several days and I’m ready for that to be gone. When it is cloudy out I am even more sleepy than normal.

Current guilty pleasure: We have a new Whit’s frozen custard location about a mile from the house, so we decided to try that out this weekend. We walked up Friday evening and got some custard. I went with the weekly flavor, which was lemon (I like anything lemon) and Daniel got an O’Henry George Whitser. We both liked it a lot and I’m pretty sure we’ll be back.

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Brookser got some leftovers …

Current drink: Currently sipping on (my second cup of) Starbucks Creme Brulee flavored coffee. It’s not my favorite, but I’m a sucker for any sort of flavored coffee.

Current food: Eggs! Daniel has been making eggs (either in scrambled or omelette form) in the mornings and I am loving it. Oh the joys of having a kitchen!

Current obsession: Stalking the weather in Colorado! It’s definitely a bit chillier than I was expecting it to be (um … it’s snowing today). It actually does look very nice towards the end of the week though.

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Current need: I need to be packing! We leave this week!

Current indulgence: I woke up this morning without an alarm and I honestly can’t remember the last time that I went to bed without setting an alarm. Of course my internal clock still woke up fairly early, but I was able to snooze it for a little bit longer.

Current bane of my existence: We have an armadillo friend that is slowly destroying our yard. We are really trying to keep our yard nice (which has not been our strong suit in the past), but this thing is making that increasingly difficult.

Please be impressed by our dipladenias that we planted this week.

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Current procrastination: At the beginning of the month, I would say that my procrastination list was at an all-time high, but thankfully I have crossed off the majority of my to do list items in the last two weeks (such a great feeling)! I took a big pile of clothes to the consignment store, renewed my car tag, filed for our homestead exemption, changed our address with the post office and took the last few items to the frame store.

Currently I am back to status-quo with a fairly standard laundry procrastination. The clothes are washed, dried and even sorted on the bed. Now if only someone would fold them and put them away!

Current confession: I changed my contacts this morning for the first time in way too long. I guess the confession would be that 1) I wear my contacts until my vision becomes “fuzzy” and 2) I don’t remember the last time that I changed contacts.

Current quote: “When God gives you a new beginning, it starts with an ending. Be thankful for closed doors. They often guide us to the right one!”

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Current excitement: Our new treadmill came yesterday! Our workout room is almost complete. We just need to hang a few more things and then we’ll be set.

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Current companion: This little goober is resting while I blog. Everyone needs to take a lesson in relaxation from Brookser.

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I hope you had a great weekend! See ya soon!