Workout Recaps + Meal Planning

Hi friends!  Happy Monday!  My week isn’t off the to the best start: I am fighting a pretty awful cold and I had to say goodbye to my mom.  She was here visiting for a few days, and it’s always hard to part ways after so much fun together.  We sure do love living in Michigan, but wish it was closer to my parents.  I want to move the state of Ohio out of the way sometimes. 😉

Here’s what my workouts looked like last week:

M – 60 minutes strength training

T – rest

W – 3 mile run, 30 minute boot camp class, 3 mile run (6 treadmill miles but my friends convinced me to go to class with them)

Th – 60 minute kickboxing class

F – 5 mile run (3.5 at tempo pace of 7:40)

S – 60 minute kickboxing class

S – Sick

I knew during my kickboxing class on Saturday morning that something was off; my body felt awful from the beginning and it just got worse as the class went on.  Moves that are usually not that challenging for me felt impossibly hard.  So it wasn’t terribly surprising that I woke up Sunday with a pretty bad cold.  I decided to push my long run to today, but I’m still not feeling it.  I think I’ll do between 8 and 10 tomorrow and call it good.  Thankfully this was a cut back week for me, so one missed or shortened long run won’t throw me totally off track.

Here’s what I’m planning for meals this week:

M – Crockpot Mexican Quinoa

T – Lasagna Roll Ups

W – Burgers and homemade sweet potato fries

Th – Quiche

F – leftovers

S – Dinner with family

Su – Easter!

I hope your week is off to a good start.  At least the sun is shining today.  That sure helps my mood a lot!  Here’s to better, healthier days ahead.

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What does a Runner look like?

Like many runners, I love reading about running.  And I look forward to my copy of Runner’s World coming in the mail each month.  Flipping through it while soaking in a hot bath is one of my favorite ways to relax after a long day with my energetic kids.  Reading about running gets me motivated to run.  Learning about ways to increase speed and agility, tricks for overcoming nerves on race day, and what my protein to carbohydrate ratio should be after long runs are all beneficial to me.  But you know what’s not helpful?  Seeing women (and men, too) with perfect abs grace the cover month after month, comparing myself, and always coming up short.  I understand that these are often professional athletes, and that Runner’s World and other running magazines are showcasing the best in the field.  But sometimes I sigh, frustrated that these images are perpetuating the myth that *this* is what a runner’s body is supposed to look like.

Because here’s my truth.  I am now 34 years old.  I have grown and birthed two beautiful girls, and short of hiring a professional, full-time personal trainer and live in chef, my stomach will not look like the women on those covers.  Anecdotally, my four year old asked me the other day why my tummy wasn’t flat like hers.  My answer?  “Because you used to live in there, and you liked to have dance parties inside my tummy, and you stretched it all out!”.  This was perhaps said with a little more exasperation than the situation warranted.  Most of the time, it really and truly doesn’t bother me.  I’m healthy, and I’m in what might be the best shape I’ve ever been in. I set PRs in four different race distances last year and achieved a lifelong goal of qualifying for the Boston marathon.  And while I wouldn’t mind losing about five pounds, I’m honestly pretty happy with my weight too.  But sometimes when I see magazines constantly put runners with the same body types on the covers, I begin to doubt that I can be a great runner with non-perfect abs, or with a build that isn’t stocky, but definitely not lean either.

One of the best things I’ve ever read was a piece by professional runner Lauren Fleshman called “Keeping It Real” in which she posted pictures of her body from a runway shoot and then a few days later during her “real life”.  I nearly danced with joy to realize that she has body fat in places she’d rather not.  That every inch of her isn’t perfect.  And that it’s OKAY!  She is proud of her body, imperfections and all.  She is proud of what her body can do, and the truth is that so am I.  All runners, in all of our varying shapes and sizes, should be celebrated.  So I’m hoping to see a little more variety gracing the covers of magazines soon.  And I’m going to stop only posting what I consider to be flattering pictures of myself.  And perhaps most importantly, I’m planning to fully embrace what my Creator tells me: that I am “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14).  Will you join me?


Workout Recaps + Meal Planning

Hmmm…this post was supposed to be ready to go yesterday, but life got in the way again.  We closed on our current house yesterday, and now we have 45 days of rent free (and mortgage free) living before we need to be all moved out and settled in our new home.  So I suppose I’ll need to start accumulating moving boxes and packing stuff up soon.  The good news is that the new place is only a few miles from our current home, and we’ll hopefully have several days to get all our stuff there.  So the actual moving process should be a lot less stressful this time around (fingers crossed!).  The last time we did this we moved from Pennsylvania to Michigan all in one day with two smaller children!

As far as workouts, here is what last week looked like for me:

M – 60 minutes strength

T – 6 total miles with 1.5 mile w/u, three mile repeats (6:15, 6:31, 6:40), 1/5 mile c/d

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W – Off

Th – 60 minutes kickboxing

F – 6 miles (3 at tempo pace of 7:30 – 7:40)

S – 60 minutes kickboxing

Su – 12 miles (first ten easy, last two fast at 7:50, 7:41)

I really enjoy ending my long runs at race pace.  It gives me lots of added confidence that I can still hit that pace even on tired legs.  I’ve got about six weeks until my 25k race (15.5 miles) and I’m right about where I want to be.  I’m looking forward to seeing even more sunshine and warmers temperatures in the coming weeks (again, fingers crossed!).

Here’s what I’m planning for dinner this week:

M – veggie burgers on the grill + salad

T – stuffed peppers

W – homemade pizza

Th – lasagna roll ups

F – leftovers

S – Out (my mom is visiting!)

I hope the beginning of your week is going well!  Cheers to a happy, healthy next several days!


Workout Recaps + New Beginnings

Wow, two whole weeks and one day since I’ve said anything on this space.  It’s not because there wasn’t anything to say, but rather, too much was happening in my little family life.  And it was stressful stuff, and my brain didn’t have time to process anything else or write coherent sentences about running.  But finally, things have calmed down.  Maybe I’ll write about it in detail someday, but the (very) short version is that we’re moving!  Not too far, but when all is said and done, our house is sold and we’re headed on to make new memories in a house that feels like it will be a better overall fit for our family.  We prayed about it a lot, and we’re excited about where we’ve landed.

Despite the increased stress (or maybe because of it?) my workouts have remained on track.  Here’s what this past week looked like for me:

M – 60 minutes strength training

T – 5 mile progression run (8:23, 8:14, 7:50, 7:44, 7:40)

W – personal trainer session (targeted areas were legs and chest)

Th – 3 different runs for my birthday, what a treat! 4.25 miles in the morning with some friends and fellow moms from my daughter’s school + 1 mile run (race!) with some friends from my gym + 1 mile run with my family = 6.25 of the most fun miles I’ve ever run!

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F – Off

S – 60 minutes kickboxing

Su – 11 easy miles (avg. 8:20 pace)

It’s so funny to me how long runs are relative.  When you’re marathon training, an eleven mile long run feels like a break, a chance to scale back.  But when you’re building up again, 11 miles can feel pretty long.  My legs were definitely feeling it on Sunday when I was done.  But it felt good, and an IT band injury that I thought was flaring up again seems to be calming back down with some targeted hip strength exercises and magic from my favorite physical therapist.

Also, my meal planning and execution has been terrible these past couple of weeks.  Between house showings (we sold our home “for sale by owner”), and house viewings, and inspections, etc. we’ve been lucky to grill sandwiches and throw together salads at dinnertime.  But I’m determined to get back on track this week.  Here’s to new beginnings and fresh starts!  I hope your week is off to a fabulous beginning.


Workout Recaps + Meal Planning

Hello and Happy Monday!  How was your weekend?  Mine was incredibly uneventful, but sometimes that’s not a bad thing.  My husband had to work again, but the girls and I made good use of our gym membership, allowing me to take a couple of group exercise classes and for them to run around too.  Plus, we all hit up the indoor pool as the sun was shining down and pretended as best we could that it was summer!  Also, I finally got a few quality runs in this week, which feels good.  But I was feeling it in some my strength training sessions, which means it’s time to scale back a little there so I don’t hurt myself.  I try keeping up with the twenty something fitness instructors that teach my favorite classes (because I am deeply competitive like that), but I need to do a better job of listening to my body and doing what it can handle. 😉

Here’s what my week looked like:

M – 60 minutes strength training

T – 10 mile treadmill run (avg. 8:30 pace)

W – 45 minutes strength (legs, arms, core)

Th – 5 miles (2.5 at tempo pace)

F – OFF

S – 60 minutes strength training + 60 minutes kickboxing

Su – 6.5 mile run (faster finish, 8:00, 7:42)

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And here’s what I’m planning for dinners this week:

M – leftovers (we ate out last night)

T – cheesy potato soup

W – salmon, rice, roasted veggies

Th – veggies burgers + homemade sweet potato fries

F – pizza (homemade or take out, depends on the energy level!)

S – mexican bowls

Su – leftovers

Have a great week everyone!  The sun is shining here and next weekend we may hit 40 degrees, so things are looking up.  I can’t wait to do my long run outside this coming weekend.  Wahoo!