Category Archives: Running

Run Run Run

Happy National Running Day!

Will you be running today?

I got up at 5:30 this morning to go for a run before my last test in this set of classes. It was a nice 11C when I left and only made it up to 15C by the time I got home. I went running by the water so there was a great breeze and I was grooving to the music.

I got in an amazing 5 miles in before I had to get ready for my last test and prepare to get the test I wrote yesterday back.

All in all yesterday’s test wasn’t all that bad in the end, I’m very pleased with my final mark. Of course now I am doubting the test I wrote today, it is a never ending cycle (of course until I start with new classes next week and don’t have to write a test for a little while, ha!)

For now I will focus on the positive!

Happy Running!

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Sweat Once A Day

For the month of May I did my best to sweat once a day for at least 30 minutes because my local Lululemon store challenged the community to do so. If you want to see the album they put together for participants to track the minutes they sweat go here.

[Source]

So how did I do? Here is the beginning of the month. I like tracking the days I worked out with stars, it makes me smile!

And here is the rest of the month.

The bottom corner was crowded.

Here were my thoughts on the last day of the challenge. “It has been a fabulous month! I learned that I can push my limits (in a good way) and not injure myself. I ran over 100 miles this month, and did a lot more core strengthening exercises than in previous months! I also learned that getting up at 5:30am five days a week to workout is always worth it!”

So what am I taking away from this? I am going to incorporate a lot more core, arms and leg strengthening exercises into my running routine. This past month I did a lot more core and yoga than I had been doing in the previous months.

Has a local Lululemon or gym ever had a cool challenge like this? What was it?

Happy Running!

Wake Up and Say Goodbye

One of my goals for the months of May and June (and a bit of July), while I’m in school, is to get up early and run and do other exercises such as stretching and core work.

So what do I mean by early? With classes starting at 8:30am I get up at 5:30am.

[Source]

When I was working retail I figured out that I could get up 3 hours before I had to be at work and I would have more than enough time for an awesome run, a shower, food, and a little down time before I have to head out the door and walk to my destination.

So when I first started getting up at 5:30am consistently (during first semester I was getting up between 5:30-8am depending on what time class started) I was ok with it. I have always loved getting up early, but the first week of second semester was hard. I had 10 weeks of school and placement ahead of me and for some reason I didn’t want to be in school. During that first week I made a comment on a workout in Daily Mile that went as follows:

“Had no problems getting up this morning! Going to bed at 10pm seems to be working for getting up early. Awesome run! Listened to some music but switched to Run Vegan Run for some company.”

I had a response that made me giggle: “Well done! Lets see how you feel in 2 weeks of these early starts.”

I read that and laughed because it is true, especially for me, you know you feel great when you start getting up early and then down the road you start getting tired and grumble at the need you feel to get up so early, but you won’t stop because you know it’s good for you to do so. You know how good it makes you feel. (Of course there are always exceptions and sometimes taking a day to sleep in makes a world of difference)

So how do I feel in the middle of week 3? AMAZING!!

So how do I do it and keep on smiling? Here is what works for me:

I bought one of those Apps from the iTunes store that has music start playing quietly before you have the alarm set to go off. The quite music aids in waking me up slowly and letting me know that it will soon be time to get up.

When my main alarm goes off (that’s right I use 2 alarms) I have to accept that upon waking up I am going to feel a little sleepy, but that does not mean that I necessarily slept poorly or went to bed late.

I turn on my bed side table light as soon as my alarm goes off, I get out of bed and stretch to get things moving. I grab my water bottle from my bedside table and start hydrating.

Then I make my way to the kitchen to get some food in me before I head out the door. I normally have a bit of a Cliff or Luna bar while I sit on the couch and read some news and drink more water.

I always make sure my running clothes are waiting for me and my shoes are at the front door. I always charge my iPod shuffle the night before (if needed) and load up new songs if I find any.

Then I’m off and running!

Stopping to smell the flowers, and take pictures of them, along the way!

When I get home I make myself a big Green Monster, I have changed the recipe lately so I’ll fill you in on that: 3/4c chocolate or plain soy milk, 2c spinach, banana, Vega Performance Protein vanilla flavour. This is the best way for me to refuel before doing any core work or yoga and before I shower and get ready for the rest of my day!

That’s how I do it, some days are harder than others. This morning my eyes popped open at 5:15am ready for the day and excited to get out and run. Some days I’m dead asleep until 5:30am and groan a little when my alarm goes off. Every day is different and that is just the way life is.

Now I am off to read an relax before bed. One thing I forgot to mention is that I get into bed around 9pm and my light is normally off by 9:30pm and am asleep shortly after that.

Question: What works best for you when you need to get up early?

Happy Running!

*Wake Up and Say Goodbye is the name of one my favourite albums by David Usher

Breathe Deeply

Appreciate the moment

Morning!!

I am about to start my third day of second semester, they are work like days 8:30am-4pm, except Tuesday which was only four hours, yay! I am ok with the longer days though, second semester will be done in ten weeks, actually after five weeks I will be done two classes and picking up two more. So really who can complain?!

On to more exciting news…

I wanted to share the new running shirt I got yesterday! I was so happy yesterday after finding out I got five A+ marks (I had five classes). I was really surprised with accounting because I went into that exam terrified that I had forgotten everything.

There was cause for celebration, and it can in the form of a visit to Lululemon! YAY!! I knew what I wanted and was on a mission.

The classic taking a picture of yourself in the mirror with cute running clothes on! Those short I have on I have had them for almost 4 years and they are still perfect! (Also from Lululemon, they are the speed short I can’t remember what they were called back then, maybe it was the same name, hmmm?)

I found it a little weird taking pictures of my chest, but hey, that’s where the writing is so take pictures I did!

I also bough a new All Sport Bra this is on my Stuff I Love page! It is the perfect running bra! It is a cute light – medium blue! I didn’t go in intending to buy it but once I saw the colour I was in love!

So how did my test run with the new Run: Energy short sleeved shirt go? It was amazing! The shirt is so light weight and breezy and it was perfect for my 4 mile run this morning!

Now I am finishing up my Green Monster and I need to finish a little bit of homework for my new accounting class and then I am off to school!

Question: What is your must have piece of workout clothing or gear?

Breathe Deeply. Appreciate the Moment

Happy Running!

Overcome

Have you ever felt like you might have peaked in your running at the very beginning and then everything after that has just been mediocre?

Well that is how I used to feel. Within just over a year of running I was running 5ks with an average pace under an 8 minute mile, I ran my first two half marathons in 1:51:33 and 1:56:33. At the same time I was never running under 5 miles at a time, sometimes I ran twice a day to total 10 miles; in addition to that I was running 6 days a week and burning myself out and developing plantar fasciitis. I even got to the point where after a race in September 2007 I had to stop running and stick to biking and strength training from October to sometime in the spring/summer of 2008. When I started running again I still was not better and I remember going out for a 6 mile run on a route that I know and love and was in so much pain and I just couldn’t get out of my head with the negative self talk. Later that month I attempted running 8 miles out the same way, I don’t remember the run actually being that bad, but I remember getting to one of the hills at the end and just thinking I was giving up because I walked up it. I wish I could go back in time to that girl that “It is 100% ok to walk up a hill if you are tired, maybe you should have taken a walk break earlier to avoid feeling defeated at the end of your run.”

This is maybe how I felt back then. Pained.

Looking back on my Buckeye Outdoors training log I have realized that I was trying to keep up with the running I was doing before I was injured.  I thought that I could still do the same milage and not feel pain or aggravate my injury. Who was I trying to impress? By the end of July 2008 I was back to biking, using the elliptical and doing strength training. I was not letting myself heal fully, silly me!

I started running again at the end of September 2008, but I wouldn’t let myself just stick to running I had to promise myself that I would bike and strength train and stretch more than run. That worked because I think I was just happy to be running, even if it was just once or twice a week. Since then everything has been going great with my running (*knock on wood*).

So why did I tell you all of this?

I did so to fill you guys in on some things before I told you about yesterday’s 6 mile run. I was sitting around just waiting for my tea to settle so I could head out for a run and I got this idea in my head to run the route that had defeated me in the past. I made a plan, I checked out where the 2 mile marker was so if I wanted to turn around make it a 4 mile run I could. Of course I know where there 3 mile mark is and it was my goal to run out to that point and turn around and finish the 6 mile run.

My boyfriend isn’t the biggest fan of this route because the whole way out is slightly uphill, just so so that you can tell. Oddly enough this is not what gets to me because once I get to the turn around point I am so happy to be going back the other way that I forget what it was like on the way out.

I listened to The Power of Madonna by the Glee cast both out and back, and it rocked! I was just zooming along and when I got to the first hill on the way back, the one that had made me feel so defeated in the past, I just booked my butt up it, until one of those little May flies flew in my mouth, then I had to stop and cough a little. At that point I just laughed and started running again. There is one more hill after that and I just turned up the music and booked it up the sucker! I felt so strong and I really felt like I had overcome the feelings from almost 2 years ago. When I got to the point where I know it’s 0.4 miles to my house I started to pick up the pace and when I was just 2 blocks from home I started to sprint! I must say I felt so powerful, like I could do anything.

I ran happy!

Over these past few months I have really started to see myself improve in my running again. I have also been listening to my body and if it wants to go slow we go slow and if it wants to go fast we go fast. Also if it wants a rest day from all kinds of exercise it gets it. I now know the importance of listening to my body. I think if I had listened to my body back in 2007 and 2008 I would have been happier and I might have never hurt myself.

So what is the moral of my story? Always listen to your body! I am never ignoring what my body is trying to tell me ever again!

Question: Have you ever pushed yourself just a little too much only to find yourself injured after? Clearly I have…but it will never happen again!

Happy Running!

The Perfect Mile

Tonight I am going to relax my brain and read something that I want to read. I have been going over material for my Office Procedures and Accounting classes for too long. So instead of trying to cram more school information into my head I am going to read for fun.

Here is what I am going to read The Perfect Mile by Neal Bascomb. My Dad read it a little while ago and I found it on his bookshelf and decided it was time that I read it.

Here’s a description from the back of the book:

There was a time when running the mile in four minutes was believed to be beyond the limits of human foot speed, and in all of sport it was the elusive holy grail. In 1952, after suffering defeat at the Helsinki Olympics, three world-class runners each set out to break this barrier. Roger Bannister was a young English medical student who epitomized the ideal of the amateur still driven not just by winning but by the nobility of the pursuit. John Landy was the privileged son of a genteel Australian family, who as a boy preferred butterfly collecting to running but who trained relentlessly in an almost spiritual attempt to shape his body to this singular task. Then there was Wes Santee, the swaggering American, a Kansas farm boy and natural athlete who believed he was just plain better than everybody else. Spanning three continents and defying the odds, their collective quest captivated the world and stole headlines from the Korean War, the atomic race, and such legendary figures as Edmund Hillary, Willie Mays, Native Dancer, and Ben Hogan.

So tonight I am going to take some time for me and relax my brain before another long day of classes and studying has to start tomorrow.

Happy (Reading About) Running!

Cookies Are Great!

I have been trying so hard to make the perfect chocolate chip cookies, luckily you have all been saved from previous attempts because I was too embarrassed to share the experiences. I mean how hard is it to make cookies? In reality it isn’t hard at all, but in my world where your stove is old and on its way out it makes for a challenge when making baked goods.

I always thought that since the oven ran not as hot as it should that I should just pump the temperature up a bit, at least that is what my Mum told me to do. That worked fine for muffins, I had figured that out years ago. Sadly, it wasn’t working when it came to making the perfect chocolate chip cookie. [photo credit]

(This comic is from a website called Garfield Minus Garfield, I was laughing so hard last night when I was reading them. If you want to brighten your day go check it out!)

So what did I do to fix this? Simple really, I used my brain (finally!) and put the oven to the temperature that it should be and then put the cookies in for the suggested amount of time and then added 4-8 minutes extra in the end, and I would check on the cookies often.

Finally I have chocolate chip cookies that taste delicious! Now I will share them with you! I found this Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe from blog Two Peas and Their Pod.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup Brown sugar
1/2 cup White sugar
1/2 cup Softened unsalted butter
1 Egg
1 tsp. Vanilla
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp. Baking soda
1 1/4 c. Flour (
I used Whole Wheat)
1 1/4 c. Oats (
I used Large Flake Oats)
1 cup Chocolate chips (
Whatever kind you want, Oh the possibilities!)

Directions:

Whisk together the dry ingredients in a bowl (later it says to add oats separately, oops I didn’t do that, I don’t know if made a difference though).

Combine sugars and butter until creamy (I use my little Kitchen Aid hand mixer, because I can). Add the egg and vanilla, mix until combined.

Add flour to wet ingredients. Mix until just combined. Stir in the oats and chocolate chips.

Drop cookies on baking sheet.  Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes (Of course I have to give them about 14-18 minutes, but that is just my stove, please adhere to above instructed baking time)! Don’t let them get too done…they are better when they are soft!

Enjoy!

As my boyfriend says, “If you are going to make cookies, make cookies”. Every baked good I make is healthy in some way (which I love!), my brownies have kidney beans in them, I’ve made chocolate chip cookies with chickpeas before…and the list goes on. This time I wanted to bake cookies, I gave him 4 last night and he ate them all, I guess they are good. I definitely think so!

So there you have it, I finally made chocolate chip cookies with success and they don’t look like little balls that are hard, they aren’t burnt, and they are tasty and delicious!

Other than spending yesterday evening in the kitchen nervous that the cookies wouldn’t work I also have been out running, the weather is just beautiful here and I want to spend as much time outside as I can!

Speaking of running, did you see the Boston Marathon yesterday? I was cheering so loud at the end of the women’s race Tatyana Pushkareva (who came in second) was gaining on the leader Teyba Erkesso so quickly, I was surprised and excited. AND the men’s race with Robert Cheruiyot, who is 21, setting a new Boston record with a wining time of 2:05:52, WOW! What a great event! I have told the boyfriend that one day we are going to Boston for the marathon, whether we are running in it or there to be spectators I will be happy.

Happy Running!