Giving up the fight, but keeping the streak alive.

Since I ran my second half marathon in October, I have been trying to continue with my training. I had hopes of running my third half in December, my fourth half in January, and my first full marathon in February. Unfortunately my body had other ideas and I have finally given up the fight. Lately, most of my runs have not been the greatest and I have been fighting my way through them. I’ve been unable to go any further than 15 miles without some kind of injury sidelining me. For the last few weeks, every run I have done over 3 miles has resulted in pain and always in a different spot so it doesn’t seem to be a recurring injury. I just think my body is telling me I need a break and I need to scale back my weekly mileage. 

I will conquer you one day marathon!

On a more positive note, I can still run and I am keeping the streak alive. I have managed to run at least one mile for the last 7 days and I do not intend on giving up on that challenge. Here is how the miles have added up so far:

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: 1 mile

Thursday: 10k fun run

Friday: 1 mile

Saturday: 3 miles

Sunday: 12 miles

Today: 1.5 miles

I left my cousin’s house on Saturday morning to head home and after it warmed up, I went out for my run. I was planning on a long run on Sunday morning so I didn’t want to go too far or hard but I was feeling good so I ran out 1.5 miles and ran the whole way back feeling pretty strong with a pace of 8:51. It was a great run and gave me hope for the long run I had planned for Sunday. So that night I carbo loaded with some delicious pancakes with peanut butter on top.

I got up Sunday morning and knew that I wanted to get the run done first thing because I run better in the mornings. But it was 25 degrees out! So I bundled up in my running capris, compression socks, thermal top, my new pullover from Walmart, gloves, and a headband to keep my ears warm. At mile 3 there was still frost on the ground:

My hands got hot around mile 2, so the gloves came off, but I needed everything else to keep me warm for the rest of the run. Here I am happy for a walk/fuel break at mile 3:

At mile 6 I started feeling some pain in my achilles/calf muscle so I turned around and had another walk/fuel break.

Please excuse the luggage under my eyes, that’s what my allergies do to me.

It is so peaceful and beautiful running out here:

It was a struggle with the pain in my calf continuing to irritate me but I made in back home, 12 miles in 2 hours 1 min. I was pretty sore the rest of the day so I did my best to continually stretch and foam roll. When I woke up this morning I still had some residual pain in my calf so I rested most of the morning before heading to the gym around 10:45.

I decided to take it easy to try to work out the soreness in my legs, 35 slow minutes on the bike and 35 minutes at level 2 on the stair climber. Then I needed to get in my run for the day and it was raining outside, so I reluctantly hopped on the treadmill and did 1.5 miles at an average pace of 10:30. It was boring! But I got it done and the streak continues!

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We’re going streaking!

Last night I really wanted a peanut butter sandwich made from my new giant jar of Jif natural crunchy. I spent about 5 minutes with my head stuck in the freezer trying to decide what vegetable to eat with my sandwich. Nothing I had seemed to go very well with peanut butter. I finally decided on okra. I knew I didn’t want it boiled because it would be to slimy and I didn’t want it fried because that’s not healthy (though oh so good!).

I looked in the cabinet and found a box of panko breading and decided to have baked okra. First I put the frozen okra in a bowl and ran water over it to defrost and wet it so it would stick to the breading. I added a half serving of the panko breading (only added 55 calories to the dish) along with some seasoning and pepper.

I shook that around in the bowl and then put it in a pie tin that I sprayed with Pam. Popped it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes and then broiled it for another 3 minutes.

While it was broiling I made my peanut butter sandwich and I was so eager to eat that tasty goodness I forgot to get a picture of the best part of the jar. When you crack open one of these bad boys there are tons of peanut chunks at the very top, Chris and me often fight over who gets this part.

And the finished product, not really a cohesive meal, but it hit my cravings, so I was happy.

I told Daisy I was going to leave her for a couple of days so I guess she got sad and decided to cuddle with me last night. It is so hard to go to sleep with a 12.5 pound cat laying in your stomach but I allowed it because she doesn’t cuddle with me very often. Apparently sleeping on me didn’t give her enough shut eye.

This morning I spent some quality time with the bike, stair climber, and treadmill. Then after I got home I went for a 1 mile run outside.

Why only 1 mile?

Reason #1 I have decided to do the Runner’s World holiday streak challenge where you run everyday from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. I started a couple of days early to get mentally prepared, so I did an easy 2 miles yesterday and a faster (8:20) mile today.

Reason #2 I’m planning on running in a 10k fun run tomorrow morning so I can burn calories that I will eat back later in desserts.

Here is the link to the streak challenge if you are interested in participating.

Runner’s World Holiday Streak

After my run tomorrow, I will be headed to the boonies to spend the weekend with my parents and cousins. I most likely will not have internet, so if you don’t hear from me that is probably why, that or I have slipped into a food coma from all the deliciousness.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

The spinach and egg craze!

Yesterday after my stellar workout at the gym, I guess I was in a spinach and egg kind of mood because I had it for lunch and dinner. Let’s start with lunch, shall we. I had a bag of raw spinach that needed to be eaten, so I decided to make a spinach salad. Please keep an open mind and enjoy what I added to my salad: spinach, avocado, strawberries, hard boiled eggs, and cottage cheese. I know, a very odd combination but it was quite tasty and full of interesting flavor combos. Here is the result:

I wish I could have gotten a picture with just the spinach and strawberries because those colors together are the most delicious looking combination! While deciding what to have for dinner, I noticed I had some leftover steamed spinach. I thought it might taste good scrambled in with some egg whites, so I threw them in a pan together, added some shredded mozzarella and BAM, another great creation. I ate it with some toast and grits and it was delicious!

This morning I got up and decided to do a workout I hadn’t done in months: Jillian Michaels 30 Day shred. I did level one and two for good measure and boy did I feel how out of shape I have gotten. I guess randomly doing strength training does not keep you in Jillian Michaels shape.

After making my arms feel like jello, I decided to head outside and try a short, easy run to see how my body felt. One mile at a 9:33 pace felt good so I decided to keep going for one more mile. During the second mile my ab muscles starting hurting, hopefully from my ab work with Jillian. Second mile was done at a 9:24 pace. I made myself stop and decided to walk a mile. To make it interesting, I started competing with myself to see how fast I could walk it. I finished with a 14:45 pace, the fastest mile I have ever walked!

After stretching, showering, and eating breakfast (shredded wheat with strawberries) I sat down with my computer for some social media action. I spent the majority of my afternoon adding a new page to my blog. Check out my race results tab at the top of the page to see my handy work. I think I am getting the hang of this blogging thing!

As you probably know, today is Globally Organized Hug A Runner Day (G.O. H.A.R.D) and I have no runners nearby to hug so I am sending out a virtual hug to all you runners out there. Pass it on!

Gym time fun

I took my healing/rest day very seriously yesterday and stayed in bed all day. I did get up to feed my body (makes for faster healing), get some ice for my injuries, and to foam roll like no tomorrow.

This morning I woke up feeling some motivation to get sweaty , so I headed to the gym to get my cardio on. When I walked in the gym, I had a wonderful surprise waiting for me:

Yes, we finally got a stair climber! But first I needed to start easy, so I went with my go to stationary bike. I spent 35 minutes at a very easy pace, just feeling out my body and making sure I wasn’t doing any more damage. My hip was feeling tight at first but it seemed to loosen up about halfway through. After I finished, I hopped on the new stair climber, cranked up my Pandora 90s station and got to work. I felt some twinges in both of my Iliotibial bands so I made sure not to go too hard. Here was my attempt at sneaking a picture of me on my new favorite machine.

please excuse the blurriness, I was getting my stair climb on

I did some easy strength training then got on the treadmill to walk. I captured proof that I was taking it very easy. I walked for 28 minutes and then tried out some light jogging (4.5-5.0mph) for the last 2 minutes. It felt so good, I wanted to keep going but I controlled myself and stopped.

After I got home, I took off my shoes and this is what my socks looked like:

This was the first time I had worn those shoes since the Spartan Race spectator incident. I wonder how long it will take to get all of that dirt out of my shoes. After stretching, I made my favorite breakfast of banana walnut oatmeal, and yes I ate it out of a mixing bowl because all my other bowls were dirty.

Now here’s some Monday happy thoughts:

1. I have been thinking about chopping my hair off because it has been annoying me, but I decided to straighten it last week and fell back in love with my long hair.

2. I gave Daisy her favorite catnip toy and she got so happy:

And then promptly crashes:

 

 

 

A little less food and a little more run

Who could resist this face?

So if anyone watched the Georgia vs. South Carolina game yesterday, you know that my team decided to not show up to play. I still love my Alma mater, but that game took away my appetite, so I ended up eating a half peanut butter sandwich around 8:45. The good news about last night was that I wasn’t having any pain in my foot and decided to try it out at the gym this morning.

 
I started my morning at the gym very easy with 35 minutes on the stationary bike, just testing out the foot. Then I did about 8 minutes on the rowing machine and boy were my legs feeling it! I did 15 minutes of weight lifting and then hopped back on the bike for 25 minutes and pushed as hard as my legs would allow. After all that, my foot was still feeling okay so I decided to try out the treadmill. I had some initial pain in my foot as I increased my speed, but it seemed to dissipate the more I ran. I am still experiencing some soreness in my foot but it doesn’t seem to have gotten any worse. Maybe I will be able to run again! 

 Chris, I took this picture for you so you could see my matchiness and make fun of me 🙂 Please ignore the unmade bed.

I checked the avocado I got at the store the other day, and it was finally ripe, so I decided to have my favorite lunch. A turkey, gouda, and avocado wrap with a green pepper and pretzels. I feel like I could never get tired of this tasty meal. 

Now I just need to find the motivation to unpack from the trip to my parents and do some laundry. I’m hoping to try a new dessert recipe later, but we will see if I decide to get up or just sit here for the rest of the day and veg out. 

Lots of food…and a little exercise

I eat way too good when I am at my parent’s house, it is both a blessing and a curse. I love having food cooked for me because I am so lazy when it comes to cooking but without all my running I’m sure I have put on 5 pounds! Last night was no exception to the good food rule. 

We had a delicious dinner filled with lots of beautiful and colorful veggies. We also had some yummy steak and a giant baked potato, both cooked to perfection on the grill by my Daddy.

Here is my salad and dinner plate after I got it all fixed up. By the way, that is not sour cream on my baked potato, but greek yogurt. If you like sour cream, try replacing it with greek yogurt and see if you like it. The plain non-fat version tastes almost exactly the same as full fat sour cream, and you get a lot more protein and calcium by substituting.

This morning I got up and decided to actually do something other than sit my butt on the couch all morning. Dad said it was going to be about an hour until breakfast was ready so I went down to the basement (since it is really wet outside right now) and did a short workout. I spent about 30 minutes on the stationary bike and followed that with some weight lifting. I will be heading back down shortly after breakfast digests to do some Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30. I love it when she kicks my butt into gear!

Breakfast this morning was once again delicious and filling. Banana and peanut butter pancakes (with bacon, sadly not pictured). They were so good I couldn’t even take a picture of them before I had a couple of bites and you better believe I had seconds. (And third and fourths on the bacon)!!

Does anyone else think that food tastes so much better when someone else makes it for you? Maybe that’s why people enjoy eating out so much.

Anyone else have recommendations for healthy substitutions for our unhealthy indulgences?

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