Sunday, August 28, 2016

Free-Da's Run Race Recap



San Antonio, TX has a plethora of unique and fun themed runs all throughout the year.  There is so much culture and history within San Antonio that it is so easy for race directors to find an original theme for their race.  They have TWO Alamo themed races, a Missions themed race, a donut race, Dia de los Muertos, Loteria, and sooooo much more!  The one I did recently was the Free-da Run for the Arts.  You may or may not have heard of a lady named Frida Kahlo, but I’m sure you know about the artist with a unibrow.  One of her famous quotes is “Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?”  If there was ever a quote that applied to running said by an artist, this is it!  She also said "I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best."  Running is all about you.  And I will now think of me painting myself as I run along in my own little world from now on!  I will get to know myself even more and become even more of an expert about myself.  Running has taught me a LOT about myself over the last almost 4 years and I am eternally grateful for that.  And I get to learn about new things, like Frida Kahlo and her wonderful and unique works of art.

So, the race was an evening race and had a start time of 7pm-ish.  The kids race started at 7 and the 5K started about 10 minutes later.  Packet pickup was on site from 5 to 7 and was actually pretty efficient.  They had a board and you looked up your bib # and they really quickly grabbed your packet and handed it to you.  They had everything in a large Ziploc-style bag, ready to go.  None of this searching for your bib at one table and then going to another table and waiting to get your shirt. 


There were a LOT of people in costume.  I was in costume, but what I did was very minimum because I was a slacker and didn’t do as much research into Frida as I really should have.  But, I plan to do that research next year and make a KICK ASS Frida costume!  So, all I did was make myself a crown of roses by gluing some fake red roses to a headband (it looked pretty cheesy by itself, but once I put it on I thought it looked fantastic!) and then doodled a unibrow (that looked way better than I thought it would look) on myself.  I wore a red tank top and a black running skirt.

The shirt was an instant favorite for me.  It’s a nice creamy yellow in a ladies cut and I just love the race’s logo.
And the bib!  Oh the bib!  I’ve said it before and I mean it, I LOVE a customized bib.  And not just a bib with my name on it (thought that is pretty cool), but customized to the event.  And this bib did NOT disappoint!  Probably my favorite bib ever. 

After the kids run was done, they had us line up.  I noticed this sign laid off to the side that I thought was pretty cool. 

The race started in the Ladybird Johnson Community Park in San Antonio.  I ran a race in this park a few years ago and really enjoyed it, so I was excited to run in this location again.  It’s a greenbelt paved hike/bike/run trail so it’s not very wide, so it was a little difficult to pass people.  But pass people I did!  I had done a quick little run to the car and back before the race started to drop off my sunglasses because, this being on a greenbelt trail, it was mostly shaded and I wouldn’t need them.  I decided to track that on my FitBit.  I figured I’d track the race itself with my Garmin.  Only problem with that was, my Garmin died about ¼ mile into the race.  Booo!  (I’m going to buy a new one soon.  I will eventually find a Garmin that doesn’t crap out on me after a year or two)  So, since I had that little bit to the car and back tacked on, I didn’t actually know my mileage as I was running, so I just went to the “current pace” screen on my FitBit.  I continued to pass people after the turnaround and felt really strong.

Oh, so it was 97° (with a “feels like” of 103°!!!) at the start.  I went out with the objective of just running my own race and to feel good and run at a comfortably hard effort and just do the best that I could.  There wasn’t a LOT a LOT of people running this race and the age group spreads were 5 years, so I figured I might just have a chance to place.  I at least wanted to give it a good try. 

As we crossed the finish line, these 2 ladies in gorgeous dresses threw confetti on us.  I later discovered that those 2 ladies and the guy in a fancy outfit right next to them were professional Mexican cultural dancers.  They put on a show for us and it was so beautiful!
I checked the results board and was so excited to see that I PLACED 3RD in my age group!!!  My official time was 27:18 which is just 10 seconds shy of becoming a new PR!  And my previous PR was done on a flat course in temps about 40° cooler.  I am definitely faster and fitter than I was then and I’m confident that I can run that sub-27 or maybe even a sub-26 minute 5K before the year is over!  Anyway, this race has a podium for the top 3 to stand on! 

So I got to stand on an actual podium for the first time ever!
I think that says I was 22nd overall female and 70th overall finisher
The medals were super cute!  2nd and 3rd places in each group got these adorable wooden easels with a tiny canvas with the race logo and your placement “painted” on it.  The 1st place finisher in each age group got a little hand painted ceramic skull with a crown of flowers.  Maybe next year I’ll snag one of those skulls!



Saturday, August 27, 2016

The Weekly Weigh In



Saturday: didn’t do squat except get my B goal on steps: at least 10K.  Was fairly exhausted from my work week and not being able to sleep as late as I wanted to.  After getting off work at 7am, home and in bed around 8am, I woke up and could not get back to sleep at 12:30.  My alarm was set for 2:30.  Meh!!!  Went to bed early too in prep for Sunday’s long run since I was getting up at 5am.

Sunday: as mentioned, this was my long run day.  And I hit the paces I wanted to hit, for the most part.  The first 11 miles, I ran between 12 and 12:30 per mile.  That was perfect.  The last 3 miles, I decided I wanted to attempt a fast finish and got an average of 10:45 min/mi (or close to that).  I was really hoping to do like 10:45, 10:20-10:30, and then 10:00 or sub-10:00 for the final 3.  Didn’t quite hit that mark but I’m still happy with what I did.

Monday: ran 7 miles around Ladybird Lake.  Was hoping to run it more like a goal pace run, but that didn’t work out.  So just ran easy.

Tuesday:  worked overtime the night before, so just a 2000 meter row.

Wednesday: just 4 miles on the treadmill.

Thursday: overtime again.  BUT!  I did row 2000 meters, so that counts as exercise, right?  I completed it in 9:51 minutes.

Friday: I was originally planning to do the same running workout I did last Friday with the 2 mile easy run, 1 mile of sprints with recoveries, then 2 more miles easy.  But, after last Friday’s workout my right calf felt like it was about to strain and both of my calves were feeling a little wonky this day, so I just decided to run easy.  I ran 5.8 miles nice and easy, and feel really good about my choice.


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decided to do my measurements today
I didn’t show a huge drop on the scale this week with my weight.  Just .2 of a pound.  That’s completely fine, though.  I’m still going in the right direction and I’m happy with that.  Besides, if you look to the right side, you’ll notice I lost almost an entire 1% of body fat (per my FitBit Aria scale measurement) since last Saturday!  And that right there is true progress!

I didn’t do anything beyond rowing and occasionally using the rowing machine this week.  No strength training at all.  I either ran (ha!  Puns!) out of time because I got started later than intended and by the time I got done with my treadmill run, it was time to go home and get ready for work.  I’ve pointed out before that I need to work on this and I’m saying it again now.  it is important for me to strength train my legs and my core/abs AT THE VERY LEAST.  As a runner, those are the most important muscles to work on so that I can keep myself injury free.  I can do things like pushups and tricep dips randomly on my own…no gym equipment needed. 

I have to say that adding extra protein to my daily routine seems to be showing the results I was hoping to see.  I’ve been having issues with feeling snacky and the extra protein, I believe, helps to squelch those feelings somewhat.  I do need to make a note that while I enjoy protein shakes, they do not work for me as a meal replacement because I need the tactileness of eating that you can only get from the actual chewing action.  So, I could do a protein shake alongside some regular food item or maybe just as a pre/post-workout thing, but not as a meal replacement. 

My food this week was a little higher in calories, but was still all healthy and good foods.  Let me recap my M-F meals for you real quick:
• breakfast: strawberry banana vanilla protein waffles
• lunch: delicata squash stuffed with quinoa, black beans, canned diced tomatoes, onions, lean ground turkey, seasoned with garlic powder and Italian seasoning (this is the meal that was rather calorie heavy due to the black beans and quinoa…but it was all healthy and delicious)
• snack: HEB hatch chile sausage, 4.5 oz
• dinner: various Chobani Flips yogurts

Then, if I worked overtime, I also had a selection of low calorie flavored rice cakes and sugar free candies to help me “make it” through the night.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Let's Get Random!



It’s no secret that I’ve recently decided that the treadmill isn’t the enemy I thought it was.  As a result, I run on the treadmill now once to twice a week most weeks.  I do try to do as much of my running outside as possible…mainly my speed work and long runs at the very least I like to do outside.  The treadmill is GREAT for easy runs and zoning out while watching scrapbooking videos.  That being said, I think my gym needs to keep up with the calibrating of the machines as I know one machine I was on last week was varying its speed and was not going the speed displayed on the monitor.  As a result the treadmill said I ran about a mile less than my Garmin said I had run. 

I shared my scrap journal with a friend this past week.  She loved it, which made me happy that I wasn’t doing too bad of a job at it.  She said it all looked pretty creative and she was inspired to start scrapbooking again.  That made me happy!

Since I’ve been working overtime a lot lately, I don’t get to do as many of my regular gym workouts as I would like to, so I hit the rowing machine on my lunch break during my overtime shifts.  It’s not a lot, but it’s about 100 calories in less than 15 minutes, so that’s better than nothing.  Plus it helps to perk me up when I’m starting to lag a bit after being awake for so long. 

I got so excited when I was FINALLY able to locate and download the Prisma app on my phone.  I’ve been seeing everyone editing their photos and making them all artsy-fartsy with the Prisma app and I’ve been sooooo jealous!  I had tried searching for it before and even though everywhere said that it was available on iPhone and Android, I wasn’t finding it in the Google Play store.  But this past week I DID find it there and boom I got it!  I have since been having loads of fun with the app!
I'm not sure if you'll remember, but a while back I had a dream about running the Boston Marathon in a powder blue bridesmaid-style dress.  Well, the other day, I went to Ross and was thumbing through their dress selection and in the clearance section of the rack, I found a dress.  And it's perfect!  So I bought it!

my "Boston dress"...Prisma style!

I’ve been taking some online classes for my jailer’s license, trying to bump up my license level.  I have no college, so in order to earn my master jailer’s license, I have to earn 1200 training hours and 20 years of service.  So, I have 6 years to earn a little over 330 more training hours.  Standard, I get at least 40 training hours provided to me by the agency I work for every 2 years.  So that’s 120 hours I don’t have to worry about.  That leaves over 200 hours I have to earn on my own.  So, I’ve been doing online classes and I have some elective training that will earn me training hour credits planned for this year and next year, so I’m looking forward to that.

I think I have discovered that if I go to bed after the sun is already all the way up (so, around 8am) that I can’t sleep more than a few hours.  Lame!  Oh well, it did make it quite easy to go to bed and actually go to sleep early Saturday night so I could get up early Sunday morning and be fairly well rested for my long run.  Which worked out great and I felt really good Sunday for that long run! 

Hit up Joe’s Crab Shack after my long run on Sunday with my friend David.  I got the Classic Steampot.  And then I played with my food.  My bib was pretty cool and pretty fitting for me as it said “show me your mussels.”  HA!  For dessert there was a s’mores brownie…da bomb!  And it was only $2!!!  Not sure if that was the usual price or just a lunch and/or weekend special price, but oh yea!
Pokewalk on the boardwalk at Ladybird Lake
I think I’m in love with Tuesday Morning’s scrapbook section.  I want to start raiding their fancy napkins and using them as backgrounds for pages in my scrap journal using matte mod podge.

My older cat has been literally plagued by hairballs the last few weeks.  Normally I just get the sensitive stomach/sensitive skin food for them because Vlad tosses his cookies easily and Oliver has allergies and gets itchy a lot.  So, I decided since the hairballs seem to be a more pressing issue that I would get the food to help with that and see how that works out. 

Something I saw in Trail Runner magazine this past week that really tickled me was this quote: “…those of us who decide to be lifelong runners make up a strong-willed herd of free-range wackos.”  I’m totally okay with being known as a free-range wacko.  Haha!

And now for a couple random things...
a great quote I saw in my IG feed
I'm starting to learn how to write pretty with my brush pens
another big A mug I bought this week
strawberry-banana vanilla protein waffles

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