Blowing it, before crunch time

Tomorrow begins official crunch time.  I figure it should start on Monday even though April 1st is technically Tuesday.  Tomorrow marks 3 weeks from Boston and 4 and a half weeks until boards.  Time to get serious!

This weekend I went home to Charleston for the last time until I am going back FOR GOOD!  Driving back tonight the only thing that made me feel better was knowing that it was the last time I would do that drive in this direction.  I am so ready to have my life back (in so many ways) I can’t even explain it.  I want to sit on my couch and make dinner with Casey and not measure our time together in hours.  Plus I want to start a day at 8 and actually be done at 5 or 6 (not 10:30 when I am finally done studying and running).  I am just so freaking close I can almost taste it.

Sadly, the weather man kept threatening thunderstorms with damaging winds and hail yesterday so I didn’t head out to do my 2 hour 3:1 run and then today I just couldn’t muster up the ability to leave Casey and Scar for 2 hours when I only have 8 left.  Call me pathetic, but hey, maybe I am.  In 15 weeks of training 6 days/week, this is the first run I missed so I am going to go ahead and say I’ll be alright.  Plus, I did get my push up challenge (with squats and abs) in yesterday, so I wasn’t a total bum all weekend.

After an amazing weekend, I am ready for this sprint to the finish.  It is finally the real deal y’all!  Keep your fingers crossed that I don’t lose my mind in the next 30 days!

Short and Sweet

Someone posted this on facebook today and I so loved it and wanted to share it with you all.  This reminded me about everyone else pounding out the pavement and how beautiful watching other people run is, especially after grinding out 13.1 this afternoon after a full work day.

Happy Thursday!!

You Should Probably Grab Some Cheese

Because I have a bit of w(h)ine.

I DON’T WANT TO BE COLD ANY MORE!! It is supposed to get down in the 20’s tonight. If you had told me I would be wearing under armor to run on March 25th in HOTlanta I would have told you to put the fire out of your pants. It was 30 something and windy as all get out for my run tonight and I am just over it. However, it could be worse, I could be home. My mom sent me this picture of our back yard today and I wanted to cry for her.

Winter Wonderland (in Spring)

Winter Wonderland (in Spring)

On a happier note, a girl had been training in our office before starting her full time work on another floor and dropped off the beautiful, delicious, guilt free snack this morning!

 

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It is so nice when people bring healthy snacks that I don’t have to feel guilty for eating 5 of haha!

P.S. Word press was being very irritating while I was typing this post so I have to cut it short to save myself from throwing my computer out the window and not being able to post ever again!

Atlanta Marathon Volunteering and Workout Summary

Last night Allyson and I stayed up pretty late making signs to have for the runners in the morning.  At 12:30 we finally threw in the towel, with less than 5 hours to sleep.  Womp womp.

My signs

My signs

Allyson's signs

Allyson’s signs

The 5:20 alarm came quick and we reluctantly drug ourselves out of bed to head to Starbucks to meet the rest of our Zone 6 team.  We each indulged in a large delicious beverage (mine a skinny cinnamon dolce latte) as a treat for being up so early.  After meeting with our team, we parked my car where we were going to have brunch and walked to our stations.  Allyson was next to me but down the road far enough that I couldn’t see her.

Once I got to my post I had some down time so I whipped out my Runner’s World magazine and read a few articles.  Before I knew it the leaders were coming through.

Lead males (at 42:00 somewhere between miles 7 and 8; killing it)

Lead males (at 42:00 somewhere between miles 7 and 8; killing it)

Lead female, she was almost too fast for me to get in a picture

Lead female, she was almost too fast for me to get in a picture

After them came all the fun people.  The people that smiled, laughed, thanked me, joked with me, sang to me and even showed me their already evident pee stains (thanks to my sign).  I had such an amazing time doing this.  If you have never volunteered for a race, I highly recommend it, especially if you run marathons yourself.  I have been in a place where I am hurting or just over it and had a sign (or person) put a smile on my face enough to make me forget whatever negative feelings I was having, even if it was only for 10 seconds.  It made my day to bring that kind of moment of relief to any of the runners today.  It was such an amazing opportunity that I will definitely be doing again!

After the last runners came through, I met back up with Allyson and we went back to Folk Art where Casey and I had brunch last weekend.  We got the same pork dish from last week and the banana peanut butter pancakes to share.  It was amazing, just like last week.  The pancakes were incredible, even just the pancake itself without the toppings was one of the best pancakes I have ever had.

Pork and Egg breakfast

Pork and Egg breakfast

Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes

 

After breakfast we headed to the movies to see Divergent.  The movie theater seats were amazing; they were actual recliners.  I was so tired I was afraid this was going to spell me taking a nap and completely missing the movie.  Luckily, I stayed awake and the movie was really good but by the time we got out I actually felt sick from lack of sleep.  I also think I was still pretty dehydrated from my run the day before.  My face was beat red, my stomach hurt and I felt so light headed.  I had planned to go to Lululemon to scout out some shorts for Boston after the movie but I just didn’t have it in me.  As soon as I got home I drank two huge glasses of water and took a 2 hour nap and felt like a whole new human.  I even felt good enough to get a light and easy 5 mile run in.

After a wonderful weekend, I am ready to tackle this week and get my butt in the car to head to Charleston Friday!

Weekly Workout Summary

Running: 54.4 miles

Yoga: 28 minutes

Strength: 223 push ups, reverse crunches and squats

Pretty successful week!  Need to get the yoga up the closer I get to the race but I can’t complain about that summary at all!

First 20 Miler in the Books

After an 8 mile run Thursday with some serious lead legs, a typical 5 mile easy loop with the push up challenge after (83 push ups, squats and reverse crunches) I had no idea how this 20 miler would go.  It was warm compared to how it has been, around 73 feels like 78.

I also finally broke down and got a new hand held water bottle.  I got mine before my first marathon in 2009 and the zipper finally broke a few weeks back.  We had logged quite a few miles together but it was time to move on.  I hit the local running store in Decatur call the Big Peach yesterday and picked up this new one.  Mine is actually the pink and purple one but I couldn’t find the picture on Amazon.

Nathan 20-ounch Quick Draw Hand Held Insulated Water Bottle (thats not a mouthful or anything); Photo from Amazon

Nathan 20-ounch Quick Draw Hand Held Insulated Water Bottle (thats not a mouthful or anything); Photo from Amazon

I can tell the company has really been working to make this better since I got mine.  There is a larger pocket that actually fits my iphone with out me squeezing it in there (hence the broken zipper) and I can fit all my gels as well.  This model also has a thumb hole that helps with grip as well as the draw string to make it tighter so I don’t have to squeeze the crap out of it the whole time I am running.  My fingers would actually be a little stiff when I was done a really long run with the old one.  If you are in the market for a new hand held bottle, I would highly recommend this bottle.  It is so well designed!!

My run went beautifully.  I don’t think I have ever had that good of a 20 mile run.  I spent some time last night doing some hip opening yoga and did my yoga for runners on youtube routine that I love before heading out.  I don’t know if it made that big of a difference but that is certainly going to be part of the routine from now one.

The run was split into good thirds that helped me mentally stay tuned in.  The first 7 miles went from my house, down through Decatur and back up the Stone Mountain Trail.  The next 6 miles, I bumped off the Stone Mountain Trail to catch the Beltline to Piedmont Park and ran around there.  There were so many people on this part of the run, there almost needed to be traffic signals, haha.  It kept me so motivated to see so many people out being active.  By the time I picked the Stone Mountain Trail back up I had 7 miles to go into downtown Atlanta and then back to my house.  Having different chunks to tackle really helped keep me going the whole time.

20 miler

I am so happy to have that run go so well, it is so motivating, especially with Boston one month from yesterday!

Tonight my friend Allyson is coming over to hang out because we are volunteering for the Publix Georgia Marathon and Half Marathon tomorrow.  I ran this race last year and had a great time.  I have never volunteered for a race before because I am usually running so I am excited to finally pay it back to the running community.  And I am even more excited that Allyson is coming with me.

We are making quite a day of it actually.  Tonight we are going to hang out and have an old school sleep over and make race signs because we are stationed right by my house and she lives on the other side of Atlanta.  We are done at our posts around 9:30 (we are at miles 8-9), so we are going to go back to Folk Art where Casey and I went last week for brunch.  I have to have the peanut butter banana french toast/pancakes/waffles (I haven’t decided yet).  Then we are going to go see Divergent and maybe go to Lulu and see if they have any shorts that want me to wear them to run Boston!

Hope you are having a fabulous weekend and that your long run goes/went as well as mine did today!!

What I Ate Wednesday, When I Had No Food

I so so desperately needed to go to the grocery store today (as evidenced by the following) that I ended up going at 9:30 at night.  Not ideal, but sometimes you just have to suck it up and do it.

I had no strawberries to make oatmeal so I was back to regular old cereal for breakfast this morning.

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Lunch was a hodge podge of things (which it usually is).  I find that I am better off just eating what I can throughout the day instead of having one big thing for lunch.  We are usually doing documentation during lunch anyway so I am lucky if I have time to eat the salads I have been making.

Peach, clementine, carrots and hummus, grapes, yogurt and granola (Coffee Chocolate Chip Granola if we are going to get technical)

Peach, clementine, carrots and hummus, grapes, yogurt and granola (Coffee Chocolate Chip Granola if we are going to get technical)

By the times I was done work, finished going to Starbucks to study, ran 5 miles, did my push up challenge (to include 73 push ups, reverse crunches and 20# squats), and started “making” dinner it was after 9:00.  I pulled my last resort dinner out of the freezer (these bad boys were 5 for 7 dollars last week on sale so I had to pick some up for occasions such as this).

BBQ Chicken Pizza Lean Cuisine

BBQ Chicken Pizza Lean Cuisine

 

I was so tired and out of it the whole time I was at the store, it took me so much longer than usual.  Once I got home and put away groceries I was ready to hit the dessert, hurry up and post and now go to sleep to start the marathon all over again tomorrow.

Almond Butter

Almond Butter

More Greek Yogurt and Granola

More Greek Yogurt and Granola

 

Tomorrow my friend Carlos from my Bourbon Chase team is going to be in town so we are going to meet up for a drink and play some trivia.  It will be the perfect thing to get me through my Thursday and almost to the weekend!

Getting Close

Boston is less than 5 weeks away.  I can hardly believe that is really my life happening!!

Yesterday I got my official starting corral and wave which was just the kick in the pants I needed to bust my rear on my intervals today.

Boston Stuff

I am in wave 2 which goes off at 10:25.  I had no idea where to expect to start so I am glad to be so far up, especially if it is a hot day which is very possible on April 21st (or it could be snowing at the rate we are going this year).  The last corral goes off at 11:25 which is the heat of the day (how much difference will one hour really make, probably not much, but I am excited about it anyway).

I always get so worked up about my Tuesday speed work outs.  Starting on Monday I start getting anxious about it and every time when I am doing it/almost done I think to myself, “that is really not that bad, why do you worry about this for two days!”  Sometimes I am just a nut case I think.

intervals

The even numbered splits were my reps.  I had 7×800 and I do them Yasso style.  My goal is a sub 3:30 marathon so my split should be sub 3:30 each time.  I was able to stay under this for all my reps and really tried to cut some time off the last one.  I only have two more work outs of 800 reps (8×800 and 4×800 the week before the race).  Once I get to 8×800 I start my cutting back.  I can’t believe I am actually this close to the real deal, big kahuna, Boston Marathon!!

WOOOOOOO!

This is What Life Is All About

We had the most amazing (and too short of course) weekend here in Atlanta.  Casey and Scar got in late Friday night so we didn’t do much other than have some dinner and hang out for a bit.

Saturday morning, while laying in bed I decided that I was not going to spend 2 of my Casey and Scar filled hours not with them so I could go run.  I was going to just let this long run go this weekend and no one was changing my mind about it.  Once we got up and had some breakfast we headed out for a long hike in the beautiful weather.

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She wanted to jump in so bad!

She wanted to jump in so bad!

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Cool old mill along the water

Cool old mill along the water

By the end we were all pooped but it was so much fun and there it was not just a stroll on a path kind of hike.  There was some definite climbing going on.  I was unsure how Scarlett was going to do with some of the places we ended up but she just skittered right along making Case and I look slow.

One happy pup!

One happy pup!

After getting home, we showered up and headed for a well earned dinner.  We went to a place in Decatur called Leon’s Full Service and I had what was probably the top 10 greatest meals I have ever eaten.

Short ribs with whipped parsnips (and some other stuff)

Short ribs with whipped parsnips (and some other stuff)

Casey had this huge pork chop with something that resembled couscous but wasn’t quite the same which was also good (but I think I won the ordering prize this time).  After dinner we took a stroll around the downtown area of Decatur.  It had the cutest square and so many restaurants; the area was bustling with people.  We were trying to find some dessert somewhere but ended up just walking around before going and getting a red box movie (Captain Phillips, that movie stressed me out but was very good) and coming back to the house to relax for the night.

Today we lazed around all morning with the terrible weather before going to get brunch at Folk Art which was maybe one of the best brunches I have ever had.  Charleston better watch out, Atlanta is on it’s culinary heels in my book.  We got two different things and shared: chicken biscuit with sausage gravy and over easy egg and this Roasted Pork and Chili Verde thing.

Chicken Biscuit

Chicken Biscuit

After Casey demolished his half

After Casey demolished his half of the Roasted Pork thing

Unfortunately after breakfast we came back to the house, saw a few friends of his and it was already time for them to get on the road.  Every time we have to leave I think it is going to be easier and it just isn’t.  But I guess thats a good thing, if it wasn’t miserable I guess it wouldn’t mean I didn’t love them so much.

After they pulled away I decided I would get my long run in that I had planned to skip after all.  I was so bummed out a run would be the perfect thing and it was just barely misting (actually wonderful long run weather).  I had a 1:50 minute 3:1 run so the last 27:30 I was aiming to do a 7:55 pace.  I ended up pacing that part at 7:37 and running a total of 13.15 and felt really good at the end.  More importantly, I felt a lot better mentally.

Weekly Workout Summary

Running: 37.02 miles

Strength: Push Up Challenge x 3 days (with added squats and abs)

Yoga: Big Fat 0…whoops

Impatiently Waiting

Well, 3 weeks down, 7 to go as I sit here very impatiently awaiting the arrivals of these two knuckle heads…

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They should be here in about an hour but the time is dragging on so slowly.  I have done everything imaginable to try and keep myself occupied after getting done work this afternoon.  I went to the grocery store to get some things to make a new and different dinner (pictures to come), went for my 6.1 mile run, did my push up challenge work out (59 push ups, 59 bicycles), watched the Modern family I missed, read some Runners World and even did some studying.  So I guess all the is left to do is stare out my bedroom window for the next hour!!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend, I know I will!!

Spoke Too Soon (and WIAW)

After practically gushing about how well things were going yesterday I guess I deserved a crappy day today.  I will spare the details at risk of sounds whiny, but it was quite trying to say the least.  Thank god for running.

Breakfast held Oats and Honey Special K with almond milk and coffee.  No shocker there.

oats and honey

After finally making it to work 45 minutes late after my morning fiasco of a “non-accident” as I am calling it, I was able to catch up on some things I needed to get done there (luckily I had an open patient appointment at 9) which was fantastic.  The morning flew by and all of a sudden I was eating lunch, and had work to catch up on again.

For lunch I had a Spinach salad with strawberries, blackberries, goat cheese, blueberry craisins and raspberry vinaigrette dressing; cherry tomatoes and a clementine.

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After work I headed to the Starbucks I was raving about yesterday only to find it was closed due to a power outage.  Womp Womp!  I got back in the car and slugged home through traffic resigning that my mind needed to run before I could even think about trying to accomplish anything tonight.  I scarfed down a banana on my commute and had my sneakers on before crossing the threshold of my house to get on the road.

All my bananas always look pathetic!

All my bananas always look pathetic!

It was windy and cold but I so need to do something to calm my mind that I didn’t even notice.  By the time I made it home I had talked myself down to where I always try to arrive: There are things I have control over and things that I don’t.  Those that I do I need to fix, and those that I don’t I need to move on from, being angry changes nothing.  Thank you running for those words of enlightenment!

To top off a great run, I started the 100 push up challenge Monday.  It has you doing push ups 3 days per week, beginning with 5 sets of various numbers of reps and building up.  So when I made it home from my run today I set in on those and added an equal number of squats and crunches to the set.  The whole shebang took me about 12 minutes and if I can do that 3 times a week I should be in business (at least injury prevention wise).  So 53 push ups, squats and crunches later, I hit the shower and made up some dinner.

BBQ turkey meatloaf (from PBfingers), Wild Mushroom and Herb couscous and asparagus

BBQ turkey meatloaf (from PBfingers), Wild Mushroom and Herb couscous and asparagus

 

While finishing up the last two episodes of House of Cards (OMG I love it) I treated myself to a few starburst jelly beans and some yogurt (which I didn’t know wasn’t greek when I bought it, but hey, you win some, you lose some).

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Hope you ate some delicious things today!  Happy hump day!