Busy week!

So, my crappy week from last week certainly improved.  Work was not as trying, I got a few miles in and I even got my new truck lined up!  Eek!  I am too excited!  More on that later…

So here is a quick recap of the week so far:

Monday:  5 miles (solo).  This was my longest run since the end of January.  I was eager to go and felt good when I started.  A half mile in, I developed not only a side stitch but nasty lady cramps.  Seriously?  Really?  What gives?  I ran and walked for three miles hoping to get rid of both.  The side stitch subsided, the cramps only went away after four ibuprofen after my run.  I had no choice… it was that or the fetal position for the rest of day.  Not cool since I had to work.  The recap on the run was 5.1 miles at an 11:20 pace for a total of 57:54.

I set a goal to run based on time not miles.  My goal pace is 11:30 which allows me the ability to run and walk aggressively and still make my time.  I am focused on getting time on legs versus junk miles.

At the end of this run, I felt pretty good.  Tight calves, but nothing else scary.  I was short on time, so I grabbed this little goody for immediate fuel:

Happy Morning Smoothie

Happy Morning Smoothie

It was tasty even warm (contains 90 calories, 6 grams of protein).  I have tried Happy Tot pouches from this company on short runs and love them.  I really think they will be my go-to instead of gels.  Check them out at Happy Family!

Tuesday:  BodyFlow, chiropractic (with hamstring stim) and 1/2 hour neck, shoulder and back massage.  Also known as relaxation day.

Wednesday:  2.5 miles on the very ICY UNH trails with Creeper (Tony) and Steve.  Steve needs a name.  I just decided that.  Anyway, this run was slow (12:30ish pace) but the trail was a sheet of ice.  My quads, right knee and right ankle were sore after this one.  That is the most work I have done in 2 months.  And it felt good 🙂

The bad part was getting a parking ticket while running.  Tony…. not impressed:

tickets

Thursday:  Off

Friday: Truck shopping!  My lease is up, so my new Nissan Murano SV is being delivered Monday.  For the first time, I got to pick my color and options for a vehicle.  I will post a picture next week!  I actually feel like I am a “grown up” despite having many vehicles before this one.  This truck also marks by third Murano.

What’s up next?

Saturday I have planned a short run (2-3 miles) before work to shake out my legs.  On Sunday AM, Tony and I will tackle Pawtuckaway.  This will be my first aggressive run/hike since injury and I am psyched!  This run will be about 5.5 miles.  Pictures to follow.

Finally, I had a nice little surprise this week… I won a giveaway from one of my favorite blogs, Shut Up + Run.  Beth wrote about a few of her favorite things on a wish list and she gave away the goodies!!!  I’m definitely most excited about the Citrus Zinger water bottle…. even though Tony was so mad I won this, he threatened to pee in it.  Great running buddy I have there.

Stay tuned for musings on sore legs (it’s like starting over) and my new truck!

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Long Week

cake

Ever have one of those weeks where you constantly keep reminding yourself it has only been 5 days not 5 weeks?  Every day this week has felt long, intense and full of issues.  Nothing too major, but enough to keep me working hard to stay focused and productive.  I have a grandmother who was just placed in a nursing home, a mother who is dealing with it head on, a friend who is currently confusing me with her lack of interest in a variety of issues directly affecting me, a husband who is distracted and frustrated by this weather and it’s effects on his next construction project, a case that took over 16 hours of time just this week alone and all of my own day-to-day responsibilities that come with running a household, working 40+ hours a week and caring for horses and a business on the side.  I am exhausted.

So I ate chocolate cheesecake at the end of one of the particularly trying days.  I smeared the top of it with Stonewall Kitchen Bittersweet Chocolate Sauce and washed it down with a glass of Cab.  It was friggin delicious and allowed me to chill for just a few minutes.

On the plus side, I got the following work outs in:

Monday:  4 miles at Odiorne State Park

Wednesday:  3.5 miles at UNH

Thursday:  BodyFlow

Saturday:  3 miles in Barrington

I wanted to do an additional run today, but got held at work until 1:00AM this morning so I opted for sleep and rest.  I have to work again tonight, but will do my 5 miler (aka my one hour run) tomorrow morning!  I am desperately looking forward to it.  I was going to do it at the beach, but have a new client meeting at noon so I have to do get it done closer to home.  Regardless, I am getting out there.  My hamstring is strong, my calves recovering well between runs and my psyche for running on high gear.  Nine weeks until Pineland (25K) and four months until Bear Brook (marathon).  In my mind, it’s all about hours on my legs at this point.  And conditioning on hilly terrain.  Plus stretching.  Bodyflow is definitely my new best friend.

I have said it before, therapy is my running.  I’m going to need a lot of it in the weeks to come.

True Friends….

I am at a point in my life where I am starting to realize my friendships are rapidly evolving.  It may be my age (mid 30s, finding a new way in the world, highly driven) or maybe just the world I live in.

I went to a fundraiser this past Sunday and saw many people I haven’t seen in a long time.  Some were people I was close to 15 years ago when I was just starting to come into my own.  I was surrounded by friends I have had since I started my career.  I was also surrounded by people who have become my friends over the years, including some of my closest friends… the kind you sometimes take for granted.  They all have a spot in my past, some in my present, some in my future.  It was a very interesting blend of the people who have been important to me over time.  We were gathered to celebrate a great man we lost almost a year ago.  It was a celebration of life and friendships.

I am also beginning to realize that sometimes a person puts more stock in a friendship than the other party.  Sort of like being in a relationship where you know you love that guy/girl more than they love you or vise versa.

Friendship is like any other relationship.  It’s hard.  But rewarding.

Would it kill you to ask me why I am upset?

Why are you blowing me off?

Is it all in my head?

Evolution of relationships…. someone was just quoted on Facebook as saying you will know who your true friends are once you stop reaching out.  It’s time to see………. I’m starting to think I care more about you than you care about me….

Bottom line… it’s OK.  I just need to figure out the answer.  And the future.  No anger, just puzzled.

Healthy choices

I would love to share a salmon recipe I tried yesterday for lunch.  It came from the book I got for my birthday, Practical Paleo, by Diane Sanfilippo.  The recipe is called Quick and Easy Salmon Cakes.  They were quick, easy, simple to improvise or change and cooked well.  Here is an artsy picture I took before the first bite:

cakes

Here is the recipe:

salmon

(cut and pasted from another site… didn’t feel like re-typing!)

I skipped the mustard (I LOATHE mustard, but promise to try it at some point to cook), only had regular flour around, and skipped the shallots and onions.  Instead I threw in some chives.  The savory blend is essentially salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika.  I didn’t measure, just threw some in with the salmon and eggs.  I did cook them in coconut oil and it worked exceptionally well.  Despite adding flour, they were still mushy so I just formed a lump about the size of a patty and threw them into the oil.  I made 3 total.  Once they started to cook, they held very well and were easy to flip.  Excellent and I will do them again!  My husband, who loves food and cooks better than me, hates the smell of salmon.  Won’t go near it.  He never even noticed that I made these on the stove top.

Late yesterday afternoon, I went for a run with Tony and Steve.  We did the same UNH lap as last week.  Steve and I did much better this week!  We shaved four minutes off our run.  The conditioning is coming back.  My hamstring is well, albeit feels a little weak sometimes when I run.  Steve and I talked about training during this part of the healing and I may try his“pain cave” crossfit sessions one of these weeks.  He assures me he can make modifications that will help me get stronger too.  I may cry.  Or throw up.  But, I am game.  My only complaint yesterday was super tights calves.  Equal on both sides.  Nothing scary, just my body rebelling to the new work.

I went to Bodyflow this morning.  I had been looking forward to it for a week.  I am absolutely in love with this class.  I have done Yoga.  I have done Pilates.  This is way better.  I sweat, I breathe, I concentrate and then I relax.  My calves are so HAPPY now.  My hamstrings feel nice and loose too.  My balance sucks so I need this badly.  I also get incredibly tight.  I also found I was much more mentally relaxed once I was done.  Prior to class I was a little jacked about a friendship issue.  Doing some self reflection, I realize it is mostly my issue.  Bottom line is the things I am concerned about for my friend but they are not my choices, they are hers.  This class helped me chill and let go a little.  So between the physical benefits and mental release, it’s going to benefit me to fit this in once to twice a week throughout ultra training.  I’m thankful again for Seacoast Sports Clubs excellent offering of classes and instructors.

What’s up next?  Rest tomorrow and runs on Saturday and Sunday.  I am hoping for 3 miles Saturday and 5 on Sunday.  With snow banks everywhere and messy trails, I am going to have to get creative and find some routes.  The long run may take place on the coast… got to research routes.

Found a trail!

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It was an awesome day for a later winter run… and I managed to find DIRT!  That is a rarity in New England right now.  We are all a bit sick of snow.  I did love running the snowmobile trails, but I am done.  I just want to bound through the dirt trails at this point!  These pictures are from the Odiorne Point State Park in Rye.  Enjoy!

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The park was incredibly quiet and I had the trails to myself.  I had a goal of 3.5 miles or so to work the kinks out from the 5K.  I ended up running a little over 4 miles in about 45 minutes with an 11:11 pace.  And that was with walk breaks and photo ops.  I got to run on a little pavement, a lot of dirt, some hard packed beach sand and had great scenery.  I found that peace today I have been missing.  Running really does do wonders for keeping me even.  It helps me work out the troubles of life.  I make my best decisions after I run.  My calves are sore.  I think the start back after 6 weeks, combined with 3 mm drop new sneakers (I have been running in a 4 mm for almost a year) and my speedy 5K are all to contribute.  Rest day with some yoga tomorrow and back on the roads on Wednesday.  I am not paying attention to the “training plan” at this point because I need conditioning time more than anything.  I will get through Pineland (25K) even if it isn’t pretty!

Here was me at the end of my run… goofy I know!

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Digging my new shirt!

Holy Grail 5K Recap

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The first 5K of the season is down and I suck at pacing!  I was not even sure I was going to make it to this race a week ago given the condition of my lungs.  I was also 6 weeks out from a hamstring strain.  My plan once I realized I could run again was to go, take it slow, and get it done at 10-11:00 minutes miles.  What a crock of shit that is!  Not even close.  My competitive streak gets the worst of me every time.  More on that in second.

I don’t pay a ton of attention to pre-race fueling.  So far (knock on wood) I have had a stomach of steel.  I had this the night before the race:

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That’s a ribeye done on the grill, a race and quinoa blend (seasoned with rosemary and garlic) and asparagus.  Oh, and a Third Shift lager.  Tasty.  No ill effects the next day.  I fueled the morning of the race with two fried eggs, banana and peanut butter and jelly sandwich on wheat.  I am HUNGRY in the morning.  I also had my green juice, coffee and water.  All before 10:00 AM!  No ill effects.  Apparently this is still working for me.

I also broke the cardinal rule of not trying new equipment at a race:

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Normally $18.00 or so, I had a chance to buy these at $7.00 each.  I have never tried them before and they feel weird!  As a wool sock wearer year round, I was actually expecting the midweight to be heavier than they are.  The fabric is super soft and comfortable and they wore great.  No rubs.  My toes were a bit cold to start, I think because they are separated.  Can’t wait to try them in warmer weather!  I paired these with my Inov-8 Trailroc 245s and actually ended up running on the dirt shoulder for most of the race by choice.

They race was excellent.  Here was us ladies at the start:

grail

We were very happy to be out in the 30 degree weather!  So, the race starts with minimal fanfare and I start on my way.  I *thought* I was keeping my pace under control and until Runkeeper told me my first mile was 9:18.  Oops.  Mile two and three were 9:34 and 9:20. I cruised into the finish line, picking people off left and right.  I felt awesome.  My hamstring felt awesome.  Only complaint was a tight left calf.  I kept telling myself to slow down but it just wasn’t working out.  My breathing was excellent and never got labored.  I wasn’t too hot or too cold.  All in all, I was spot on.  I did this race last year at 28:31.  Yesterday I was 28:54 and holding back.  I was too afraid to bust my hamstring again.  I am glad I did, because I had gas at the end and feel really good today.  I can tell I did a speed workout but no pains.  Foam roller and me are friends! It’s so good to be back!!!!!

Next up… St. Mary 5K in Dover on April 13th.  And training of course.

Sore like an old lady

It is AMAZING how quickly your body loses condition.  In my first official week back, I am crouched over like an old bitty first thing in the morning!  It also reminds me how much your body utilizes the core muscles.  I think I took that for granted since I spent most of last year keeping my core strong.  My abs, shoulders, low back and chest are all sore.  Not the bad sore…. just the “I finally ran” sore.

I got to run with the boys last night.  This was my first run with anyone since my injury.  It was excellent to have company.  What a crew we were though.  Tony with his silly knee, Steve with no running under his belt this year and me with my leg.  The banter and insults started right away!  I think I miss that the most.  At one point during the run I told Tony we need to practice not talking in order to conserve energy.  We are a bit chatty.  He is like a chick.

Anyway, we took a jaunt around the UNH campus and it was just challenging enough to get my HR up and make me work a little on the hills.  My hamstring is holding up super well!  I get twinges on occasion but nothing serious, certainly no pain or soreness.  I am just reminded there was an injury there.  From what I have read on muscle repair, this is not unusual.  My brain still thinks something isn’t quite right.

Here was our run from last night:

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It was CHILLY!  Compared to our recent weather anyway.  Regardless, it felt great to be back out with friends and enjoying the run.  I actually got a compliment too from Tony who noticed my striding has changed a lot since last fall.  I am feeling like I am landing mostly mid-fore foot and he can see it!  It’s working!!!  It certainly isn’t perfect, but I am getting there.

I will be heading to the Holy Grail 5K tomorrow morning.  My goal?  10-11 minute miles.  I want to run again on Sunday so I need to make an effort to not get wrapped up in the race atmosphere I love so much!  This is my first race since November and I am itching to GO!  I’m sure if I push it, my legs will remind me.

Look for my race update this weekend!

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