Monday, January 30, 2012

weekends are the best

I love the weekends.  I love being able to move a bit slower, not feel so rushed to pack everything in after work.  It just feels go to know that I can do whatever I want, whenever I want.

I took full advantage of that this weekend.  Friday night a friend and I went to a Zumba class.  I hadn't been since New Year's Eve (the flashmob!!) so I felt a pretty good butt-kicking.  Just what I was looking for!  My plans ended up changing a bit after that due to traffic...but I ended up getting home, getting cleaned up, making some yummy pasta and enjoying Thursday night's 30 Rock on Hulu.  How's that for a happenin' Friday night!  Yeah!  :)

Saturday I got up early since it was Long Run Day!  Thankfully there was no snow in sight - unlike last Saturday.  After breakfast and a couple cups of coffee, I headed out for a 6.6mi loop through my neighborhood and around the lake.  There weren't too many people out yet, which was nice.  One thing that does bother me about the lake loop:  walkers who take up the ENTIRE sidewalk.  Seriously, does one person need to take up 3ft of cement?  Sometimes I feel like being the obnoxious person, "ON YOUR LEFT!!!!!!!!"  But more often than not, I just sneak up on them and freak them out.  Ha!

Anyway, I made it back to my house just as my friend was pulling up for the second half of the run.  We hit up a couple smaller hills then headed down into Melrose.  The sun was shining, the wind was only blowing a bit, everything was dry...It was a great run!  We were able to get a solid 7.2mi under our belts.  The only thing I would have done differently on Saturday was to have a Gu before I began the second half.  I was feeling pretty depleted by the time I was done.  But it wasn't that big of a deal.  Next time.

The best part of the weekend was The Paint Bar.  Eleven women from church and I went here on Saturday night and were instructed by the most adorable group of women ever on how to paint a version of Starry Night by Van Gogh.  They made it into a step by step process that anyone can do!  The coolest thing was that while we were all painting the same thing, everyone's came out so different.  We each have our own interpretation and way of painting.  Here's a pic of a few of us:

Sunday was another great that I wasn't looking forward to much.  But God really turned it around and used it for his glory.  No run yesterday, just a 4mi walk around the lake.  It being such a beautiful day I knew I didn't have time for a run but a walk was just what I needed.

Hooray for weekends!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

movie quotes come in handy

Due to a poorly timed snow storm, I did not get my long run in on Saturday as previously hoped.  I took a few hours off from work and did it on Tuesday. 

I could not have chosen a better day!  After the snow storm on Saturday (through which I drove to a delightful brunch at a friend's house - hooray for mimosa's at 11am!), Sunday was a jam-packed day of drama, youth group, drama, church, football, drama, church, The Help.  Full day!  Monday didn't seem to be the right day either as I wasn't sure what the weather would be like.  Turns out it wasn't super yesterday was.

Tuesday came with bright blue skies, clear sunshine and 54deg temperatures.  Did you catch that?  54deg.  In January.  So after working in the morning, I changed into my running gear and set out on the Minuteman Bikeway.  I headed toward Arlington and ended up going all the way to the Alewife T stop in Cambridge.

I felt awesome heading out.  The wind was at my back, I had lots of energy, it was a glorious day!  But as I turned around, I began to feel a bit tired out.  Knowing I still had another 10 or so miles I was feeling a bit daunted but kept plugging away. 

It was at the 3 more miles to go point when I'd had enough.  Out of nowhere this mantra popped into my head, "I feel good, I feel great, I feel wonderful!"  Over and over and over I repeated this to myself before realizing where it came from.  What About Bob?  Of course!  Some people love this movie, some people hate it but sometimes it comes in handy to have a Bill Murray movie quote stuck in your head.  And on Tuesday it did. 

I also started chanting, "Just.  Keep.  Running."  Over and over, out loud.  On a crowded street.  At some point, I just stop caring what people think of me!  I finished with a grand total of 17.57mi.  Not too bad!!  I was a little stiff and sore that night and on Wednesday, but not the bad kind of sore - the good kind! 

This morning my roommate and I got up early and headed out for a 4miler in some freshly fallen snow.  Some parts were soft and quiet, some parts were hard and crunchy.  Made for a fun run so early in the day.  :) 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

time flies when you're training

I'm a little surprised that it's been so long since my last post!  I feel like it was just a couple days ago...  I just wanted to post a quick recap of my runs and a few things that I've been up to.

This past weekend I did a few long runs in the bitter cold.  Seriously.  It was reeeeally cold.  Friday night I was a wimp and got 5 solid miles in at the gym.  Saturday I woke to sunny skies with the temperature around 15 or so.  I waited until about 11am to go out and run in the hopes that it would warm up just a bit!  Well, the temp got up to about 28, but the wind was still blowing at 20mph.  Great resistance training...but really cold.  Add to the fact that I was already feeling unwell, it was a terrible run.  I felt achy, sick, and angry.  Literally every step beyond mile 8 (I only did 10) was accompanied by an "I. Hate. This."  But as I always say, the horrible runs make us appreciate the awesome ones.

Fast forward to Monday.  I went for a 8.8mi run with my friend, Jocelyn, who is training for a half marathon.  That run was awesome.  I felt great!  It was fun to get a bit lost and figure out where we were, it was nice to not know exactly what the terrain would look like.  It was just one of those really great runs that I appreciate after those really horrible ones.  Also of note on this run:  I finally used a Camelbak I purchased specifically for long runs.  I figured there was no better time to try it and it worked perfectly!  It was light, didn't bounce around too much, carries 1.5L of liquid and has room for keys, phone, Gu's, etc.  I was pleased it has turned out to be such an ideal purchase.

I haven't run since Monday.  I've taken on a lot to get through this week - which is fun, but challenging too.  I have a rehearsal for a drama tonight (get ready Grace Chapel folks, it's a tear jerker!) but after that I'll head to the gym for 5 treadmill miles.  And this weekend is 17.5mi!!!!  I'm excited because it's a course I haven't run since summer - from Peabody through Salem to Marblehead, around the neck twice then back the same way I came.  It's a beautiful route, even in the winter. 

One last thing:  I registered for the NYC Marathon Lottery (if I don't get in this year, I automatically get in for 2013) and this was posted at the top:

Please note that participating in a marathon is an extremely strenuous activity. Applicants should seriously consider consulting their physicians before committing to participate in this event. 

I have one word for this disclaimer:  DUH.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

one, two, three

We're only 12 days into January so I feel the freedom to post once more about 2011.  There were just a couple more things I wanted to share with you.  

One:  I am one quarter of the way to my donation goal for The Respite Center!!!  Thanks so much to all who have donated!  If you haven't yet, there is still plenty of time.  Just click on the link to the right.  

Two:  I use a workout tracking website called and each year's end they send you a graphic of your workouts for the entire year.  Mine looked like this:

Kinda interesting if you like stats and all that.  I enjoy seeing my year of training in a format like this.  And maybe this year, I'll try harder to break the 1000mi mark.  Just two miles away?  Seems like a lost opportunity...  

Three:  What I didn't tell you about New Year's Eve was that I was a part of a flash mob in Boston.  The Zumba class that I infrequently attend was organizing this and since some friends were going, I decided to jump in as well.  See the two videos below for evidence, we did two songs.  I'm not in there right away but I jump in.  See if you can find me... (feel free to not watch all of the videos!  They are kinda long)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

a life routine

My life routine goes like this:  work, eat, run, sleep - repeat.  Occasionally, I'll vary it with hanging out with friends or youth group events, but essentially, that's what I do on a regular basis.  And on the weekends, it's the same, just take out the work aspect.  All this to say, there's not too much happening in my life right now, other than running, working, eating and sleeping. 

In regards to running, here's the latest:  Saturday (1/7) was Long Run Day.  It was beautiful out and I took full advantage - 15.2mi.  Sunday was a rest day.  Monday I found a challenging speedwork treadmill plan and took that to the gym - total mileage:  4.36.

In regards to working:  I really enjoy my job.  Lately, there's been a lot of brainstorming and creative meetings.  With two retreats coming up (on the same weekend - eek!) there has been no shortage of stuff to do.

In regards to eating:  I'm trying to eat better/less.  It's hard.  I love to eat and I love tasty food.  It's part of the reason I started running!  But I hate these 5-10lbs that I want to get rid of!  I have been doing better about not going out to eat so much.  I've been making more meals at home and bringing in leftovers to work so I can save some money/calories by not going out at lunch.

In regards to sleeping:  AHHHHHH.  I love sleeping.  I'm blessed to get about 8-9hrs a night.  :)

And that's my life routine in a nutshell!  What's your routine?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

dreadmill no more...maybe

There are few things I dread more than logging miles on a treadmill in January.  Typically all the resolution-makers are there making it difficult to find an open treadmill.  And running on a treadmill (as regular readers know) is torture for me!  It's hot in the gym and I feel like a mouse on a wheel...

But last night was a reversal of both of these negatives!  It was a very cold night in the Boston area so I packed clothes for hitting the gym after work.  I was surprised to see that the parking lot was not as full as it normally is in January and thought that this was a good sign.  Sure enough, there were at least ten treadmills available when I walked in!

Instead of going in ready to plug in a set incline and speed, I brought with me a treadmill workout suggested by a blog I read on a regular basis, Carrots 'n Cake.  The workout was 45min total, varying the speed and inclines every 2-3min.  Here it is below: (the first 5min are 4-4.5mph at a 1% incline)

Burn up to 450 calories walking or 550 calories running with this 45-minute treadmill workout from Jeanette Soloma at Crunch Fitness. You’ll mix up the inclines and speed to increase your heart rate and sculpt legs and butt.
Minutes Walk

5:00-7:00 4 / 3% 5.5 / 2% 6
7:00-9:00 4 / 5% 5.5 / 3% 6-7
9:00-11:00 4 / 7% 5.5 / 4% 7
11:00-16:00 3.5 / 10% 5 / 6% 8-9
16:00-21:00 3.5 / 8% 6 / 3% 8
21:00-22:00 4.0 / 4% 5.5 / 2% 6
22:00-23:00 4.5-4.8 / 4% 7 / 2% 8
23:00-24:00 4.0 / 4% 5.5 / 2% 6
24:00-25:00 4.5-4.8 / 4% 7 / 2% 8
25:00-26:00 4.0 / 4% 5.5 / 2% 6
26:00-27:00 4.5-4.8 / 4% 7 / 2% 8
27:00-29:00 3.5 / 10% 5 / 8% 9
29:00-31:00 3.6 / 8% 5.2 / 6% 8
31:00-33:00 3.7 / 6% 5.4 / 4% 7
33:00-35:00 3.8 / 4% 5.6 / 2% 7
35:00-38:00 4.5 / 2% 6.5 / 2% 8
38:00-40:00 4.0 / 2% 5.5 / 2% 6
40:00-45:00 3.5-3 / 1% 4.5-3.5 / 1% 4-5

After a fun and surprisingly intense workout, I headed over to the grocery store (which is typically very busy as well) to find few fellow shoppers.  I gathered the supplies needed to make a giant pot of chili and headed home to get started.  Doesn't this look delicious?!

(Sorry about this dead space...I can't get rid of it!)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

new year, new me?

Happy 2012, everyone!!  I rang in the new year by spending time with good friends; playing games and enjoying delicious food.  New Years Day was celebrated by attending my friend's church where she preached, enjoying a lunch out followed by an awesome 5mile run.  Perfect way to bring in the new year, if you ask me!!

I also celebrated the new year by doing this:

just a few inches off... 
While I like thinking about living a radically different life once the calendar switches the year, it doesn't usually happen.  Sure, I make resolutions and goals but they don't last long and I typically go back to my old habits (watching too much TV, drinking too much coffee, procrastinating too much).  Each year, I think, "Maybe this one will be different..."  Inevitably, it's not.  And I end up feeling that the new year has let me down...I'm just the same old girl I've always been. 

But maybe it's just my attitude and way of thinking...  I'm not a new person when a new year comes.  I am the same girl I've always been.  While I don't have to be a new person, I can be a better person.  And not just because it's a new year; but because it's a new day.  Each day I have a chance to live the life that God has called me to and be the woman he has created me to be. 

At my friend's church this past Sunday I was reminded of this very fact when she used Lamentations 3:22-23 in her sermon:  "Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness."

Each day is a new day to be a better person, to try again, to start over, to be the person God wants us to be. 

Happy New Year to you and also Happy New Day to you!!