30 days to go!

Um – see that over there?  My countdown is truly on now – my goal race is only 30 days away!  Yikes.  To be honest, I am not feeling as ready as I expected when I signed up (though, does anyone ever feel REALLY ready for a race?).  There are a couple reasons for this:

  • My injury is not fully healed.  There are limits to how much I can train in certain ways.
  • I was rock solid about my training from November to February.  Unfortunately, I was also terrified that I would make my injury worse again or get reinjured.  This really affected my progress – although my endurance got better, and I REALLY enjoyed every workout, my pace did not increase.  I simply wasn’t pushing hard enough.  Lesson learned.
  • I’ve been feeling crazy swamped and overwhelmed for the last 4-6 weeks.  Sometimes, my workouts just haven’t happened.

Ah well.  No matter what, I know I have put in the time.  I just hope that my progress will be good enough.

 

In other news, Wendy and I are BOTH really enjoying the warmer weather. 🙂

Snowy Day

It’s snowing again!  I’m getting a little bit sick of winter, but the snow does look very pretty sticking to the trees outside my house.  Spring is on my mind, though.  I love taking photos of flowers (much to Jeb’s chagrin!), and looking at them reminds me that spring/summer is coming.  I can’t wait!

Quick updates:

  • I have had a bit of trouble hitting my stride again (see what I did there? 🙂) after my last recovery week.  Between the kitchen flooding (and all the headaches that come with that), an obscene amount of homework, and planning my sister’s bridal shower, I have just been swamped.  That being said, I made it out for a few short runs.  I’m just not hitting my typical mileage.
  • New nutrition strategy is working well, I think.  First weigh-in will be tomorrow, then I will adjust accordingly.  Overall, I am feeling better than I had before – I think I really needed to tighten down on my diet, even more than I had realized!
  • I’m still concerned about my speed.  I think my endurance is pretty solid, though I will definitely have to maintain/improve that a bit before my race.  My biggest obstacle, though, is getting back up to speed after my injury.  I’m trying to work on stride rate now, and will add hills and more specific speedwork once the roads are dry/safe.
  • Cross-training is going great!  Once my back is 100% better, I think I will do at least one heavy powerlifting cycle.  I miss it.

And, to help you think about spring too, here are some flowers!

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Another Snowy Run

The weather continues to be slightly warmer here, though it snowed for most of the day.  Not wanting to miss another workout, I headed out for a 2.25 mile loop around my neighborhood.  I am not normally a fan of the winter (in fact, I’m sure I’ll be cranky about it tomorrow when I’m walking around campus), but there is something so peaceful about running outside in the snow.  Granted, the running is a little more challenging, but we take our time and are very careful to be aware of cars.

I’m learning a lot about winter running this year, and what I need to do to keep my workouts successful in any weather.  One thing that helped today was…. I got those shoes I wanted!  It was perfect timing, really.  I ordered them from L.L. Bean a few weeks ago (I had a couple coupons), but they were back-ordered.  Luckily, they arrived just as I was getting ready to go running, and I couldn’t resist wearing them!  For the first time, I ran in snow without getting my feet wet.  Awesome.

Running While Sick

A couple days ago, I came down with a head cold.  I have all the usual symptoms, and have been taking all the usual steps to get better.  However, I had a long run scheduled for yesterday.  Granted, it was the long run of a recovery week, so it was only 4 miles, but I still get kind of amped up when I know I have a long run coming.  Since running isn’t exactly “rest and drink fluids,” I went back and forth on whether or not I should head out for my run as scheduled or take another rest day.

I did a little bit of research, and found several different articles referring to the “neck” rule or the “shoulder” rule.  Meaning, if symptoms are above the neck or shoulders, running is ok, but it is important to be aware of any increased symptoms during the workout (and cut it short).  If symptoms are below the neck and shoulders (especially in the lungs), it is worth it to stay home and rest.  And, if you have a fever – stay home!  You can read more about this here.

So, I went.  I felt ok during my 4 miles, though my pace was slower than usual.  For a few hours, my energy level was better.  Later in the evening, however, I kind of crashed.  I felt much worse, so I went to bed early – but I slept like a baby!  I slept for 10 hours (rare for me) and actually feel a bit better today.  Last night was my first good night of sleep since I got sick, and I think my workout helped with that.

My verdict – if my symptoms aren’t too severe, and are above the neck/shoulders, I will run.  If they are much worse than they were yesterday, though, I will take a day off.  Today is a yoga day, so I will take it easy, and get ready for a mid-week long run!  We are supposed to have GORGEOUS weather (for January) on Wednesday and Thursday, so I am changing my schedule around to make sure I get in a nice workout while I can!

No excuses

No excuses.  Just go.

src: Fitness Magazine

My oh my!  I was not feeling up to working out today.  Here is a sampling of all the excuses that came to mind as I procrastinated got ready for my run:

  1. Jeb got home from work really late (like 8 hours late – so at 8 a.m.), and I tried to wait up for him.  I was exhausted.
  2. I’m getting some sort of head cold.
  3. I’ve been in a crazy homework loop for the last two days, which has pretty much sucked away my motivation for everything.
  4. I should probably clean the house or run errands or something…
  5. I was feeling kind of stiff.

But, I decided to go for it anyway.  Here’s why:

  1. I have a race coming up, and with my injury setback, I don’t have a lot of time to mess around.
  2. A crappy run is better than no run, and getting my heart rate up could only help with my motivation and mood.
  3. I was actually supposed to do today’s run yesterday, but I decided to switch around my schedule because it was an unholy level of coldness here yesterday.
  4. Wendy looked at me with her big, brown eyes and I knew she could use a workout too.
  5. Housework and other chores can wait.

And, I am glad I went!  I did a 3.3 mile loop, and had a nice long stretch when I got home.  I’ve spent the rest of the day moving through my routines, but with a bit of satisfaction.  Plus, I’m moving a bit better.

Tonight, I’m going to attempt to make Chicken Wellington for dinner, with this Creamed Spinach on the side.  I haven’t been able to find a good recipe for the wellington, so I’m just going to wing it.  The creamed spinach, though, is SO good.  It tastes kind of like spinach dip (maybe because I use extra garlic?).

In other news, WHY are these jello worm things still all over Pinterest?  I see this picture every.single.day.