Sunday, April 21, 2013

April Stats & Chance to Hope Run!!

So the stats this month aren't super thrilling, however!! My body fat percentage is down!! It was a great encouragement to see my % down since it's been such a bad week for me as far as working out. I'm having such a hard time working out and working at a job! But I'm hoping the next few weeks bring clarity for me as far as how I can fit working out back into my life. 

Satisfied that there aren't too many gains.

This weekend I did the Chance to Hope 5K on Saturday. I didn't finish the whole route, so I personally only ran 2.5 miles, but it KICKED TOTAL BUTT!  Courtney did a fabulous job coordinating the race and it was such a great day, for a great cause!

 It was better than "The" Color Run because I know the money I paid to run was put to an awesome cause.  Also, my kids had a blast running in Briley's Fun Run! A ran around all week saying "ME MEDAL TOO!" so we let him run and I'm glad we did - he hasn't taken his medal off yet!

Before and after (but not the REAL after) 

Me with my colors & kids with their medals :-) 

Thursday, April 18, 2013


 I started a job on April 1. I haven't worked since before my (almost 5 year old) daughter was born! It's been a huge adjustment for me but it has been WONDERFUL! I am only working part time, so I have Mondays and Thursdays off. It's SO HARD to learn how to get my kids out of the house. Of course, my early risers have been sleeping in, so we're rushing. Thankfully our daycare is amazing and will feed them breakfast too if we have to run out of the house fast!

That said, I have NOT yet figured out how to fit working out into my routine. I have been single-parenting this week while my hubby is out of town for business, so TIRED is the name of my game. I know I can find things to do at home. I want to try Insanity. I know there are dvds and YouTube videos I can follow. I just lack the motivation right now!

We are still trying to eat as cleanly as possible.  We've had a few awesome winning recipes lately for sure! I made Sweet & Sour Chicken a few weeks ago but had to grill the pineapple separately for my no-fruit-in-my-dinner hubby (I love you, dear!). Then Jen and her fiance came over last night and I made it again. My kids have DEVOURED it each time I've made it! Here is the recipe. The only thing I don't do is add cilantro, simply because I never have it on hand!

So my FAVORITE preparation of salmon is the way my step dad has always made it - a rub of brown sugar, cumin and paprika. Obviously brown sugar is out of our diet so I haven't been sure of how to adjust. Then we tried the coconut sugar awhile back and it has a great brown sugar flavor, so I decided to give it a try. And it WORKS! It has the same caramelizing effect that the brown sugar has on the salmon when grilled and the flavors are spot on! The rest of the plate is a whole wheat spaghetti noodle with avocado sauce and maple/bacon Brussels sprouts!

Smoked turkey, mashed potatoes & sauteed zucchini & baby bella mushrooms!

Jamie Eason's turkey meatloaf, sauteed baby bella mushrooms, corn and mashed potatoes!

Stuffed green peppers (with turkey & brown rice), lots of green beans & a salad

 This is what I've been lovingly calling "Callista Cake." I have this awesome friend who is a complete and total inspiration who introduced me to this recipe. She blogs at Run And Lift Like a Land Shark. I am hoping to get her to summarize her journey for us, but all you need to know is she's lost 100lbs, has run a marathon and now is training for a figure competition!! She's my hero and I really look to her for inspiration!! She posted this recipe here as Casein Cake. (I use whey protein, but it's easier for me to call it Callista Cake) ;-)
I have yet to PERFECT this cake. I just did some googling tonight to learn more about coconut flour, which I am new to using. I found this site, saying you should be using 1/4 to 1/3 cup coconut flour for every 1 cup of whole wheat flour. So I got CLOSE last time, but mine is always so cakey and dry. I think I can remedy that next time I make it by either using LESS flour or more eggs/coffee!  I have had it three times and have topped it each time with chocolate chips and unsweetened coconut flakes. Yummmmmmmm!! 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Go! St. Louis Half Marathon, Done!

Beautiful am in the STL
Aaaannnnd, it's over.

Today was hands down the HARDEST race I've ever run. Both physically and mentally, I was exhausted. 
I feel like it was uphill almost the whole way (even if it wasn't). But when you look at the elevation map, it is pretty exhausting. They called miles 6-8 "Holy Hill" and it was a race-within-a-race, with it's own separate time. However, I still feel like mile 2.5-4 was all hill and so was 10-11 and a few little ones from 11.5-13!! 
I KNOW I start off too fast and lose steam, so I was trying to rein it in. But I always get so caught up in the excitement and the people that I just go with the flow. Even if the "flow" is 9:28 min/mile! Oops. I felt really good from miles 1-4, but started slowing, as you can see, around mile 5.  Obviously "Holy Hill" was a slow time for me, but miles 9-12 were just bbboooorrrriinnng. No spectators, no music, no FUN!

Another issue? I bob and weave. I remembered (after the race) that I did it last time. I remember being frustrated around mile 8 that my RunKeeper was telling me I was hitting mile markers about .25 miles ahead of time. And again, by about mile 8 it was FRUSTRATING how far ahead it was! I finally tore my headphones out of my ears and swore I would get out of my own head for awhile. 
Mile 5. Awesome view of downtown
Then there was just silence. The Rock'n'Roll half last October had entertainment and tons of spectators. There wasn't a mile without something to pay attention to, but this one? Silent. Lots of focused runners, which is GOOD but not motivating whatsoever!

As you can see, the splits were weird. I am used to a 5K and 10K split, but I guess since they did the "Holy Hill" race within the race, they did miles 6 and 11 instead.  My Holy Hill time (so 2 miles) was 21:58, so I was slowing down a TON on that stretch. My 11 mile time wasn't terrible, if I had any steam left at all to keep going. 

I was literally staring at the finish line - walking. I could SEE it down the road and I still couldn't bring myself to sprint, at times even to run.  

You see, I put SO MUCH pressure on myself to PR in this race. Not just PR but knock 10-15 minutes off of my time! With the amount I have been (or haven't been, as it were) running, that was ridiculous to think in the first place. But I kept thinking "I said it on my blog, I have to PR!"   Then a spectator helped me out....

I wore one of my favorite running shirts. It says "I RUN FOR  ME" As I was rounding mile 9, a spectator yelled "I LOVE YOUR SHIRT!"  And I remembered. I run for ME. I RUN for ME. I don't run to impress my kids or my husband.  I don't run for you guys (no offense).  I don't run for money or fame or notoriety. I run for ME. For my health and for my sanity. For the thrill and for the relaxation (sometimes!)

So the pressure? It was from me. The stress? From me. Who would I be letting down if I didn't PR? Myself.   Part of me, at that realization, let go. I didn't need to kill myself to finish the race. I didn't need to push to impress anyone. Looking back, I get a little sad that it was so easy to let myself down, but it is was it is now, right? 

The 2:15 pace runner was passing me at mile 11. Mile 11!! Actually closer to 11.5 because I crossed the 12 mile mark with him. He was yelling at anyone walking "YOU CAN DO ANYTHING FOR 1 MILE!" But I just couldn't even push myself that last mile.  He saw me after I finished and came over and said "What a strong finish!" but I didn't notice because I also had two medics rushing me asking if I was ok... Guess I didn't look so fresh after my 13.1 ;-) 

I walked through and got a TON of food (I always accept everything because I know I have two small scavengers that will eat anything I let them!), hobbled as far as I could before sitting on the curb and waiting for my family to find me. I snapped this picture just so I had some proof I survived. With my bling. I do love me some bling! And yes, that is a cookie ice cream sandwich. food.EVER. 
So, yes. I made it. I finished.

I did PR, only by 3 minutes. My official time was 2:21:01. My RnR time from October was 2:24:06. Since I "gave up" around mile 9, I was surprised to PR at all. Even though I did, it still feels like an epic failure. Overall just a depressing run. I almost walked off the course around mile 8, I actually had a few thoughts that this was my last half, that I am just not made for this mileage. 

But I won't give up. Mostly because I RUN FOR ME.  So why not continue and keep bettering myself? 

Besides, this was only #5 in #13in2013!!  I have a long road to go this year! :-)

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Race Weekend!

It's the big Go! St. Louis Marathon weekend here and they have a great way of getting whole families involved in the fun! Yesterday I ran to the Expo after work (WORK! I work now!) and picked up our race packets. I talked to the pace team representatives and have decided (in my head, not on paper) that I will try to stay close to the 2:15 pace runner. 

Today was the Read, Write and Run program runs for the local schools, as well as the 5K and the kid's fun run. My daughter has been looking forward to this run (and her medal :-)) for so.long! She was excited to pull out her running shorts (which she ONLY wears for races, it's too cute!) 

PURE JOY when she got that medal!

Posing :-) 

We had her run the 100 yd dash (shhhh that was for ages 5-6, but she'll be 5 in a few months! Plus, she ran a MILE in October, the 50yd dash was ridiculous!)

She did awesome. She had a smile on her face the whole time and watching her ENJOY it gave me a lot of inspiration that I will take with me tomorrow during my half!

The race shirt is a nice shade of ... well, the best description is day-glo salmon. It's not quite my cup of tea, but it's still a nice race shirt. I do LOVE the design. 
I'm in corral B. To be fair, there are only 4 corrals so B probably doesn't mean much, but I am excited about it! 

I did my checklist tonight: I have my 5 hour energy (for before we leave), my Honey Stinger (for just before the start line), my BioFreeze portable tab (for my knee, if I need it), SportBeans (I mixed a package of berry and a package of fruit punch for a personalized blend ;-) and I got my bottles filled with my typical Pink Lemonade Nuun. My race plan, as always, is to get water at the stations and stick to my Nuun and no sport drinks offered. It's always safer that way for me! 

I will be KT taping my knee in the morning for sure. It's been quite tricky lately, I'm just hoping the tape will keep it sane. I will be waiting until the end of the race to start popping pain pills since I had such a bad reaction last time. 

So here goes nothing!!!

Goal: 2:15            
STRETCH goal: 2:10          
DREAM Stretch goal: 2:05

Monday, April 1, 2013

Looking back

I've been doing the virtual races to help keep my training consistent and to help me get all of my 13 races without the pressures of entrance fees, expos and travel. The most recent one, the Anywhere5K, actually submitted times and I was able to claim those times on Have you ever checked yours?? I found most of the results of my timed races there!

Anyhow, I went to check out my most recent time and had a moment. You know, that moment when you realize you are doing exactly what you set out to do. In this case, I set out to be better. Not better than anyone else - but a better ME. A better version of myself. And looking at this race history showed me that I am doing just that.

I was surprised and proud at how far I've come since that first race. My THIRD half marathon is this Sunday and I am running with the knowledge that I can just keep getting better!