Sunday, October 23, 2016

Some Run Collages

I forgot to include these with my Marathon Training posts the last 2 weeks, so here you go!  In case you like seeing them, of course.  Which I hope you do.

October 9th...
October 13th...
October 14th...

October 15th...

October 16th...
October 17th...
October 20th...
October 21st...

Marathon Training Week #14

Sooooo, I realized on Thursday that I had not posted this week’s marathon training recap.  Ooops.  I meant to type it up and post it Thursday evening but I got home way later than I meant to, so I didn’t have time and I didn’t have time yesterday morning either before work.  So, here it is…just like 5 days late…haha.  I’m really sorry for the lack of posts this past week.  I hope you haven’t lost interest in me.

Tuesday: overtime Monday night.

Wednesday: overtime Tuesday night.

Thursday: FINALLY got my new Altra Ones, no thanks to UPS shipping them all over the freaking country.  So much for 2 day delivery.  So, of course, I had to take them out for a test run!  Also, hadn’t run since Sunday, so a shakeout before starting the relay Friday morning was a good idea in my mind.  For a short 3 miler I went.  My legs were excited to run as my splits were 10:05, 9:48 and 9:30.  Felt great!
Friday: relay time!  This was my first relay ever that I have participated in.  For my first run, I ran 6.53 miles.  The run went fantastic.  I listened to my military cadence and knocked out the whole thing in 1:01:06!  Snagged a brand new shiny 10K PR in the process even!
My second run was a sunset run and was only 4.37 miles.  I felt pretty good, but this was the first time I’ve ever run twice in one day, so it was a whole new experience for me.  I was trying to overtake this lady that was in front of me.  I paced her pretty well the first 2 miles, but then I started getting tired and she pulled away from me.  I got chased by a dog for the first time ever during this run and that definitely kicked that bit of the run up a notch or two.
Saturday: day 2 of the relay!  I got to run at sunrise for my first run of the day.  This leg was 7.51 miles.  And there was a decent amount uphill going on.  But I managed to keep my overall pace under the 10 minute mark.  I got chased by another dog.  This one was a little scarier because it was bigger, had a deeper bark and chased me further than the first one.  I ran much faster for about half a mile as a result.
Now for leg #4 of the relay.  This one was 6.55 miles and was my slowest, but was still at a good pace, really.  I got chased by a horse, but thankfully it stopped before it got to me.  Nope, it was not behind a fence or tethered to one of those merry go round type trainer things, either.  Was pretty weirded out by that.  Overall, I ran the 24.96 miles at a 9:45 pace.  Wow!  I used this whole relay as a training trial run of sorts for the marathon.  And I think it went REALLY well.
Sunday: so, as if running basically 25 miles between Friday and Saturday wasn’t enough, I just had to go and run a 5K race!  It ended up being only 2.9 miles (per my Garmin AND my FitBit).  I finished in 26:02 officially.  I wish it had been a full 5K as that would have been a major PR for me.  Oh well.  I won 1st in my age group and had a great race.  I was able to do a really good kick at the end and passed a lady that had previously passed me up.
Monday: since I decided last minute on Sunday to not do the race as a shakeout run to help me recover from the relay, but to race it, I was in desperate need of a shakeout run.  So, 4 miles at a 10:49 pace was on the roster for this day.

Overall, I had yet another fantastic week of marathon training.  I had amazing runs at every turn and I just feel great.  I feel super confident about the marathon next month (just 3 more weeks!  eeeeeee!).  No doubts that I will hit my 9:43 average pace…or at the very least I know I will get a major PR out of it.  I will EARN the sh!t out of that sandcastle medal! 

Weekly Weigh In

This is going to be a little messed up of a Weekly Weigh In post as I’m posting for 2 weeks in a row.  So, let me review last week really quick.  First, I’d like to say that I’m not going to review my workouts in these posts anymore.  I’m going to use these posts strictly for reviewing my weigh ins throughout the week.  I realized I was double posting my workouts and that was pointless and probably annoying to you, my wonderful readers.  So, last week.  First, I started off the previous Saturday at 153.4.  Up a smidge from my lowest weight of 150.7, but still acceptable.  Then, Sunday, I somehow shot up to 157.5!  whoa!  What the heck happened there?  Well, that became apparent not too much longer after that because I “started” the whole you-know-what and things only went uphill from there.  Ugh.  Monday was 158.8 and so on until the highest last week of 160.2 on Friday.  There was no weigh in last Saturday because I wasn’t anywhere near my scale as I was in the middle of running a relay between Austin and Corpus Christi.
Now onto this week.  If I thought last week ending with 160.2 pounds was bad, holy moly was I in for a surprise.  Sunday I weighed in at 160.2 again.  Then, here comes the shocker…Monday I weighed in at 164.2!  OMG!  What is going on here?  I mean, sure, last week I had that time of the month so that’s bound to make me gain a few pounds, but I had just gained over 14 pounds in a week and a half.  That’s NOT normal.  Last month, when I got my cycle, I noticed some tenderness and bloating in the area of my ovaries (sorry to the guys reading this) and remembered back like 11 years ago when I had a giant grapefruit sized cyst on one of my ovaries that the pain was the same.  So, joy of joys I’m now getting cysts with my period.  Ugh.  So, when they popped up again with this month’s period, I wasn’t surprised.  But, they were worse.  Much worse.  By Wednesday I was literally in tears.  I cried for half of my work shift on Wednesday and it took a bunch of ibuprofen to make it tolerable, and then I was just plain worn out from dealing with the pain.  So, I stopped taking my birth control pill.  After that, I dropped like 9 pounds in 2 days.  Damn.  Again…NOT normal.  But, I’m feeling human again and don’t have the sharp little pains or bloating around my ovaries anymore.  I talked to my pharmacist about special ordering the pills I was taking before they switched from being Target pharmacy to being taken over by CVS.  She said she’d check into it.  If she can’t make it happen, then I’ll have to call my doctor and have her call in a new script to a different pharmacy that I know carries the pill I was taking before.  But that’s a whole ordeal I’d rather not deal with.  I’d much rather that they be able to order it at the pharmacy that I’m already using.
Anyway, I kept it in the upper 150’s for the remainder of the week after I dropped that 9 pounds…sheesh…though it did fluctuate up and down a little, it didn’t bump back up over 160.  Yay for small victories, right?
So, while I’m not happy with these weigh ins, I do understand a little bit of what was going on.  Oh, and my hormones being all out of whack made me crave things and I felt weak when it came to resisting foods I probably should not have been indulging in.  I’m happy to report that pretty much immediately after stopping my BC pills, I noticed a drastic drop in the cravings and even had a lack in appetite here and there.  Much better.  Also, even though my weight was up, my body fat was still down closer to where I want it to be at the moment…hovering between 24%-26%.  Again, not ideal, but acceptable.  I have come up with a gauge for how I view myself when I look in the mirror.  If I can see my ab lines and the distinction of my quad muscles, then I’m happy.  And that, my friends, has nothing to do with the scale.  Also, my clothes are still fitting well, so all is well, really.  It’s just the scale that isn’t with the program right now.  But, that’s okay, it’ll get back with the program in the next couple/few weeks, I’m sure.  I just have to figure things out and make the pegs fit into their holes again.  I WILL get down to 145!  I will!  And I just attended some training the other day and part of that was going over SMART goals.  The first letter of that, the “S,” represents “specific.”  Be specific with your goals.  So, for that, I want to weigh 145.  The “M” means they should be measurable…so, I have to be repetitious here and say that I will measure this by getting down to 145.  Haha.  The “A” stands for achievable.  I know 145 is achievable.  It’s only 5 pounds below my most recent lowest weight.  The ideal weight for my height is 132 to 158.  So it’s totally within the healthy range for me.  “R” stands for relevant.  To break this one down, that means it should be reasonable and realistic.  Again with the repetition as I point out the healthy weight range for my height and my goal being in the middle of it.  The final letter, “T” means time-bound.  That just means that there is a REALISTIC deadline that you want to complete your goal by.  So, for the purposes of my goal to get to 145 and with the troubles I’ve had recently with cravings and female issues and so on, I’m stating I want to get to 145 by my birthday, December 14th.  So, there we go!  That’s my SMART goal.  What’s yours?

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Let's Get Random!

Last week (and, for full disclosure, it “bled” into this week as well…sorry, really bad joke there) I was HORRIBLE at sticking to paleo.  I blame TOM.  Or maybe you prefer the nickname “Aunt Flo.”  Either way, I was a mess with cravings and lack of will power.  I was up about 5 pounds most of the week.  Also, because I was so horrible with my eating for about 3 days last week, there were 3 days I didn’t track everything I ate.  Bad Sara.  Bad, bad, bad!  So, that is the first time I have lapsed in tracking everything that I ate in a day since the beginning of May.  For shame.  But, I’m not going to beat myself up over it.  Saturday I was back on track with tracking everything and I’m still tracking everything again, so it’s all good and I’m moving on and moving forward. 

I realize that the last couple weeks I have seriously slacked about including random pictures in these posts, so I’m going to do my best to make up for that with this post (so be prepared for a boatload of random pics and memes and things at the end of this post). 

Something I think I forgot to write about in a previous Random post was in regard to my bunion.  Oh, by the way, I have a bunion on my left big toe, in case I’ve somehow forgotten to mention it or if I did mention it, you missed it, or I mentioned it before you started reading my blog…blah blah you get the idea.  Anyway, I wear one of those silicone bunion toe spacer/friction guard thingies whenever I wear closed toe shoes.  I don’t wear it when I wear sandals because, well, there’s nothing pushing my toe in toward my other toes, so no reason to wear one.  The very first one I ever bought lasted me a year.  Every single one I’ve bought since then has lasted me anywhere from just one wearing to 2 months, tops.  This is very annoying and frustrating.  I mean, they’re only expensive if I buy them from the local podiatrist.  Otherwise the most I’ve paid is $10+shipping for 2.  But I’ve recently discovered them on the Wish app for $1-$3 for 2 + only like $1 shipping for each pack of 2.  Super cheap.  So, that’s where I’ve been ordering them from lately since I apparently need them in bulk.  While I was waiting for my order of 8 of them last month, I was taping a torn one to my foot with kinesiology tape.  HA!  But, hey, it worked!  It just made the skin that was trapped under the tape super dry so there was a lot of need to moisturize my big toe and the little toe next door to it.

I’ve been seriously nailing my runs lately.  I don’t want to talk too much about my runs in the Random posts because I have 2 other weekly posts that are dedicated to posting about my runs and workouts.  But I just want to say how proud I am of myself for working so hard and hitting and holding paces I set out to run.  I love running with purpose.  I have to say, I think that’s my new motto. 

Last week I got a couple long awaited things in the mail.  First was my Capital to Coast Relay official swag running tech hat.  I really like it!
It’s it nice?  I’ll be wearing this for the entirety of the relay this week!  I’ve been asking lots of questions and compiling a nice packing list of the things I’ll need to take with me for the approximate 30 hours we’ll be out on the course as a team.  It was recently brought to my attention that there will be an opportunity to shower at a high school the first night (for a dollar, I think I can swing that…now to remember to get some cash to take with me!), so I added a towel and toiletries to my packing list.  I want to take 3 changes of running clothes and 2 changes of regular clothes.  Since our team is the Justice League, I’ll be taking a Wonder Woman tank top and my blue spandex with the white stars to cross the finish line with.  I was happy to find out that we should all get our own individual bibs.  I wonder if they’re generic bibs or customized?  Guess I’ll find out soon enough.

One of the guys that had originally signed up for the relay backed out for whatever reason so I volunteered to take one of his legs and will now be running 25.02-ish miles instead of 18.46.  Sweet! 

The other thing that arrived in the mail that was long awaited was my 2nd place age group award from the Schlotzsky’s Bun Run last Sunday!  YAY!  This was my 5th or 6th age group top 3 finish (one of them I didn’t get a medal for, though…I got a gift certificate which was good too, but I love my bling!). 
I ordered ANOTHER pair of Altra shoes.  These were the One model.  They’re a really pretty orange color, so I’m excited about them.  However, at the time of this posting, they have not yet arrived.  They were SUPPOSED to be here on Monday but some GENIUS at UPS (my grandma calls them OOPS because…yea), when they were almost to me in Dallas, TX, put them on the wrong truck and they ended up in Pennsylvania.  So they didn't arrive until today.  Great.  Just great.  But, I should be good on shoes until after the first of the year.  Which is good because I’m trying to curb my spending. 
Speaking of the Altra brand…I applied to be an ambassador for the brand!  I don’t know when they’ll send out notification of whether or not applicants were selected or not, but I definitely have my fingers crossed.  I’m hoping I talked myself up good enough that they’re willing to take a chance on me.  I really love their shoes and honestly don’t see myself changing to another brand of shoes…ever.  Even if they don’t choose me, it won’t tarnish my opinion of the company or their amazing product.  I imagine I’ll hear back from them whether or not I’ve been accepted as an ambassador around the end of November as they’re taking applications through November 7th.

Speaking of being an ambassador, I’ve got my application for INKnBURN all filled out, now I just need to take a few pictures of me in INKnBURN gear that are flattering to the brand and attach them to the application and send it off.  Like I said, I’m thinking this will be the last time I apply to renew my ambassador status with them.  Not because I don’t love the company or their product anymore, but because I don’t want to feel pressured to buy as much of the product as possible just so I can promote it.  Don’t get me wrong, the discount is nice, but I’d rather pay full price and get things I KNOW I’ll wear a lot rather than buying things for the sake of the fact that I’m an ambassador and I feel that’s what’s expected of me.  I will always love the company and their product.  I will also never stop buying their product.  I enjoy being an ambassador and telling people about the company and the high quality of their product and will continue to do that even once I’m not longer an ambassador.

Other things I bought recently were a new band for my FitBit Charge 2 in a seafoamy color.  I like this so much better than the blah black band. 
I also bought a case for my new phone.  I picked this case because it has a place to attach a lanyard/wrist strap.  I want that so that when I’m out running, I can have a wrist strap on in case I drop the phone.  Even though it’s supposedly shock proof to like a 5 foot drop, I don’t want to chance anything.  Now, when I get a new hydration pack that has pockets that my new phone will fit in without it hitting random buttons, then I won’t have to worry about it so much, but for now I’m holding my phone in my hand while I’m running and, well, my hands get a little sweaty at times.

I’ve mentioned it already, but I bought some military cadence CD’s plus downloaded more cadence off Amazon music.  I’m seriously obsessed with running to cadence now.  I think it really helps me focus on hitting my paces better than just regular music does.
I also bought a pair of silicone donut molds!  I’m a little disappointed that they don’t make full size donuts.  It’s more like medium size donuts, but that’s fine.  I want to make them and then use them as pre-long run and pre-race fuel.

So, I’m sure you have all noticed that I changed the banner on the blog.  I had business cards for my blog made about a year ago after I attended a women’s conference and those cards have the now former banner on them.  So, I’m thinking I should get new cards made with the new banner on them.  I’ll get them for cheap from Vistaprint, so it won’t be a huge expenditure.  I’m hoping to attend the women’s conference again next spring, so I want to have good, attractive business cards to hand out to people.  I really want to attract more readers and followers and hope to make lots of new connections with fellow runners and weight losers and healthy lifestyle enthusiasts.  So, I think I’ll get to designing a new business card after I’ve finished with costume making.  HA!

Speaking of costume making.  HOPEFULLY this weekend I can finish up the mermaid and barbarian costumes.  I just need to make some wrist wraps and lace drawstrings in the barbarian costume.  For the mermaid, I just need to sew in the waist elastic and then affix a wrist strap to the tail fin so it’s not dragging on the ground getting ruined.  Then!  Then I get to sew some wings for the crow costume.  I’m really excited for this year’s costumes!

Aaaaaand, speaking of costumes!  Joann’s Fabrics and Crafts had Simplicity patterns on sale for 99 cents and McCall’s for $1.99 this past week.  So I bought a BUNCH!  I’m going to go back and buy some more as I think the sale goes through the end of next week.  I’m going to stock up while they’re cheap!  OH YEA!

My mom’s birthday was on Tuesday.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!  I love you!

And now some random pictures from my phone...

this stuff is actually really good and goes great with brisket!

sweet potato waffles
breast cancer awareness month means pink badges at work

love bug!

gluten free homemade-ish pizza
patterns were hugely on sale at Joann's


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Marathon Training, week 13


LUCKY NUMBER 13, BABY!!!  I am so freaking stoked about my marathon training and how it’s going.  Like, seriously.  I’m having a blast with it too!

Tuesday: nothing because of overtime.

Wednesday: I ran 7 miles within a 6 second spread between 9:40 and 9:45.  WOOT!  That’s essentially 7 miles at marathon goal pace!  I struggled a little in miles 2 and 3, but I don’t usually get warmed up until after mile 3 anyway, so that wasn’t much of a surprise.  Mile 2 was my fastest mile and mile 3 was my slowest.  My splits were – 9:43, 9:40, 9:45, 9:42, 9:43, 9:42, 9:43.  Marathon goal pace for me (for SPI next month, that is) is 9:43 (or faster).  I had bought and downloaded some military cadences, so I listened to those while I ran this morning and I think they made a huge difference.  They distracted me more than just regular music does and my run just flew by! 

Thursday: nothing because of overtime.

Friday: 9 mile tempo run…NAILED IT!  2 mile warm up at slow long run pace, 5 miles between 9:28-9:32, then 2 miles cool down at slow long run pace.  I love how much easier these faster paces are for me.  I guarantee that 2 months ago, even if it hadn’t been super hot because it was the middle of summer in Texas (so if it had been fall/winter temps), that there is no way I could sustain and hold a 9:30-ish pace for 1 mile, let alone 5 with it being just comfortably hard.  I want to say that listening to the military cadence while I’m running helps to motivate me.  So I’m going to download some more so I have even more variety of cadences to keep me motivated!

Saturday: I didn't do any workout.  i meant to but was far too busy.

Sunday: long run day!  And no race to help break it up, so I had to make my own game to break up the run and keep it fun and interesting for me.  My initial plan going into this long run was to do a 3 mile slow long run pace (about 10:40-ish), then kick it into MGP gear (9:43-ish) for 13-14 miles, then cool down at the slow long run pace for 3-4 miles.  Total of 20.  However, I ran fairly hard last week and I have a relay coming up Friday-Saturday this week that I’d like to run kinda hard so our team can get a good finish time, so I decided to take it easy for all my other runs this week.  So, instead of that wonderful tempo idea for this run, I just did a negative split between the first and second halves of the run.  The first half was complete in 1:51:16 and the second half was done in 1:46:34.  OH YEA!  Not a huge difference, but a negative split nonetheless, and that's what matters!

Monday: nothing.  I slept in and let my body rest.  Although not doing a shakeout run like I’d originally planned on doing means that I’m more sore than I would have been otherwise.


I’m really, really enjoying making games out of my pacing during my runs.  It really helps make them be even MORE fun than they already are for me.  Always, I never thought I could hold a steady pace during a run on purpose because my mile paces during a run are so erratic.  I had no idea how people could “hit paces” and make their mile times be all the same or within a few seconds of each other.  Now I understand and I love doing it!  I love a good challenge and when I challenge myself to hit a certain pace or keep all my miles within a small window of seconds, it’s a challenge and therefore more fun than “just” running! 

I had a scare last week.  I got bored one morning and went on the SPI website and was perusing around and saw that you could search the registrations.  So I searched for my name and came up empty handed.  WHAT?!??!  So I went to my email and pulled up my receipt from imAthlete for my registration.  I then went to their website and it said my confirmation # was invalid and that there was nothing matching my email address.  Needless to say I FREAKED out!  I emailed the marathon and imAthlete.  imAthlete got back to me within 24-ish hours and emailed me a copy of my invoice.  Whew.  I still have no idea why it was saying my confirmation # was invalid.  Their website was messing up and timing out a lot, so maybe it was just a glitch on their end.  I finally heard back from the marathon people and they let me know that I am for sure registered and that she doubled checked.  YAY!

During my long run this week, I did dates for the first time as a during run fuel.  I didn’t take them until about mile 13 (first fuel of my 20 mile run) because my stomach was upset, but when I took them, they were really easy to eat on the go!  I just cheeked on and chewed on it, then spit out the pit (Costco doesn’t have them with the pits removed unfortunately).  I was a little out of breath when I would get done eating one as I breathe through my mouth, but other than that, no issues!  So they’ll work for me!  YAY!

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