Category Archives: cross training

Wednesday Fun Facts


5 mile run. 15 min stair master. 10 min weight. bases covered.
I ran on the treadmill. and lived to tell about it. I had to go on a reconnaissance mission to find the treadmill. I knew I left it in the basement, but lost track of it. easy to do when it serves as a junk holder.
come out come out wherever you are, you rickety old treadmill.

I have to strategically place it so that when my head is bobbing up and down it doesn’t hit the drop cielings that aren’t there or get tangled in electrical wire. what I get for being a supermodel tall.
In theory, I was going to bust out my 10 mile run on this beast. Bachelorette Emily got me through the first 5 miles, then I just couldn’t hang anymore. the iPad couldn’t decide which way it wanted to be oriented and kept turning the screen horizontal and vertical. Emily kept kissing everyone and i just couldnt take it anymore. she also kept buffering instead of playing straight through. enough. ended at 5, hopped on stairmaster. for a hot second I started getting down on myself for not pushing through, being mentally tough or digging deep to crank out those last five miles. I let that hot second pass and remembered what I’ve learned about training. and about training right. and about how I work. I’m not technically training yet for my fall marathon. therefore, there is no need to wipe myself out, burn myself out or stress myself out about miles. I do my best. my best is always enough and it’s always what it needs to be at that moment. there will be plenty of time for digging deep, finding the fight, being mentally tough and cranking out countless miles on the treadmill. when it’s time to really train. right now, each day of running brings what it may, and the plan is that it generally brings feel good, stress free endorphins that give me some good base miles.
happy runner. 5 miles short.
I had no idea about training plans and training cycles before these spring marathons I ran. I ran my november marathon and was on fire to get prepped for an April marathon. I didn’t stop. I didn’t break. I thought if I am running and working out anyway, I might as well make it count and make it tough. all the time. not so. you make it count by taking a break. taking time off. taking it easy so that you can take it hard when it’s time to start the 12, 14, 18 week training. it gives the training a purpose and a beginning and an end. it also gives the break time purpose; a beginning and an end.
My break time is nearing its end. and I will be ready to train hard and dig deep because I have kept this time off very stress free and perfect. for me. no burn out this time. famous last words.
Let’s chat about some Fun Facts Wednesday.
First, I should note there is nothing necessarily fun about these facts. reader be warned. It just sounds better than facts Wednesday. on with it.
1. The only reason I had to dig out the treadmill was because I chose not to get up early and run outside. my bad. will I ever learn. I would have been just as tired at this moment if I got up 45 minutes earlier and got my run in as if I slept the extra 45. that is a fact.
2. This box came yesterday from vitacost.
and that is about how I felt by the end of today. slightly beat up. if you consider the end of the day 4pm. by 7:30, I was near comatose. I kindly said to my oldest that my day had expired about 2 hours ago, and it would be safer to deal with the father of the house. Luke was out to get me today. I think we had 6 outfit changes by 9am between all the kids. I’m going to start dressing them in plastic wrap. I’m full of practical solutions like that.
3. In that box, among other things, was this protein powder.
My favorite protein powder is this plant fusion, but it gets pricey. I like optimum nutrition products, so I do half a scoop of each. with unsweetened vanilla almond milk. it is mighty tasty. actually satisfies a sweet tooth. sometimes.
4. I will never turn down a trip to sweet frog froyo. #1 because very good friends of ours own it. friends in high places. #2 because it’s frozen yogurt. nuff said.
I rarely get my own when I take the kids because I do not have that many hands to handle that much yogurt and that many kids. instead I make Luke’s how I want it and steal from him. maybe that’s why he’s mean to me sometimes. he’s dealing it’s some pent up froyo aggression. Grammy joined us today. we love gammy. and an extra set of hands.
5. I am on my own personal running streak, day 8. this does not jive with my self made rule of not running more than 3 days in a row to prevent injury. my schedule just got a little wonky and before I knew it, I had more than 3 days of running under my belt. I will admit, my shins are feeling the tiniest bit of tightness, but nothing to worry about. I have also not stretched or rolled in at least 4 weeks. naughty runner. I’m over stretching. foam rolling, on the other hand is just a smart thing to do. I couldn’t do it for awhile because of my elbow/arm situation. but now I have no excuse. gotta get back on that roller.
6. My little entrepreneur had her first lemonade stand of the season.
her “stind”. In her world, she hears and “i” in “stand”. fine by me.
she has big plans. she’s already scoping out neighbors’ yards for the most prime lemonade selling location. she made $2. and gammy supplied the lemonade. no overhead. $2 profit. I didn’t charge rent. she and her bro and sis drank most of that half gallon of lemonade. yuck.
7. Situations like this do not phase me in the least.
pink bink. nakey boy. playing in the dirt. by the recycling bin. have at it my little friend. you’re only 2 once. and mama is too tired to fight the please don’t play in the dirt by the garbage fight. that’s what baths are for.
8. My lunch today.
flatout wrap. avocado, spicy brown, egg whites, tomatoes, pickles. more mustard. s&p. yum.
I don’t know why I love it so much. I think because it’s really just a vehicle to get an avocado into my belly. and flatout wraps are pretty amazing. and I’m easily impressed by many things. I’m totally one of those people that will eat something just because it’s healthy. like quinoa. I try my best to like it and find ways to make it that will make me eat it. I don’t like avocados unless they are wrapped up with lots of mustard and other things. or in guac. but I crave them. daily. and this little wrap tastes so delicious with my little avocado tucked nicely inside.
9. These ended up in my pantry.
and didn’t stay there for very long. might be my all time favorite. maybe because it brings me back to my childhood. a lovely chocolate treat.
10. I want my own chickens. we go through about half a dozen eggs daily.
I want to grow my own. eggs. but chickens probably wouldn’t survive luke. or me. so I will keep buying those little suckers. Anna wanted to know how the egg got like that, all put back together and perfect after the chicken was hatched. so innocent. I told her that was the chicken. she had no words.
11. I was going to stop at ten, but thought I could make this more obnoxiously long and wanted to share this with you – I was introduced to this non meat, meat and have been on a hunt for it at whole foods since. I finally found it. In the non meat, meat section – right by the tofurky and smart dogs. of course.
I like to try out non meat, meats, but only ones that are not soy based. I really liked these. I had tried this other non chicken, chicken one and it was so gross. it was made with mycoprotein or something. this has the protein derived from vital wheat gluten. no idea what that is.

Can anyone fill me in on vital wheat gluten? Stead clear or ok in moderation? I will of coursebe consulting the almighty google to see what juicy info I can come up with on this food substance called vital wheat gluten.
I’ll let you go now and move on with your night. after a few questions.

Do you have a favorite non meat, meat that is not soy based protein that you can share with me?

Charleston chew or gag on a spoon? It is a particular kind of candy.

Tell me a fun fact about your day. please.

God’s gift to Running


Yesterday – 7 miles. no garmin, just a watch and it was just under 8 min mile pace. which is what I was shooting for after Sunday’s run. and the fact that it was 5 am and I had very little motivation to run much faster. even if a wild animal was chasing me, not sure I would have had the desire to pick up the pace. followed later by a nap time workout (Luke’s nap, not mine, just to be clear) 30 min stair master speed intervals, 20 minutes strength. I know what you are thinking. killer workout day. you’re right. it was. 
strength moves included some of these moves:
Wall sits with shoulder presses

Stork stance reverse row (alternate legs)

V-sit core work

Dumbbell Chest press with hips thrust

Pendulum core exercise

Side lunges (alternate sides for 1 rep) with weighted arm extension 

12-15 reps of each, or until tired, repeated 3-4 times

Pretty confident none of those are the actual names for those exercises, but what they would logically be called if I named them. Interpret at your own risk. I am not a trainer. I just pretend to be one. in the comfort of my home. 
Today – planned cross training day. no running. 1 hour stair master, speed intervals and hill setting. 
gearing up for a little strength session, but it’s possible it may not happen
As you can see by the magnificent photograph above, I enjoy sporting a good compression sock. that is one item that I have deemed God’s gift to running. it makes running possible. It possibly makes running and all time spent after running comfortable and injury free. even if I didn’t run, I would probably wear these. I have some pretty gnarly veins in my right leg, one of God’s gifts of pregnancy and childbirth, and these socks help a great deal with keeping that lovely gift a little more in check and a little further away from God’s gift of medicine in the form of sclerotherapy. which is as uncomfortable as it sounds. which would put me out of running for a few weeks. which is why it’s not going to happen and why I’m going to run compressed instead.  

Read on to find out some other things I have deemed God’s gift to running.  and because I think whatever I do is the best thing to do, you might want to consider following along. at your own risk.
1.  Cardio equipment that allows for cross training. I underestimated the importance and the effect cross training has for me this past spring, in training for my races. I got so focused on a plan I picked out online, which didn’t include any cross training. my bad. I did a lot of cross training last summer/fall because I was a clueless runner. sometimes it’s better to be a clueless runner and run on instinct. or some form of in between a plan and runners intuition of what works for you as a runner. things like spinning, stairclimber and stair stepper/stair master are pretty phenomenal ways to cross train and supplement the running miles. I don’t plan on replacing my miles with these machines as much as adding them on because I think they add a lot of strength without the pavement pounding. easy on the mind and body.  here’s my ad for the stair master: keeping runner’s burnout away, one step at a time. catchy, I know. I’m thinking about a career change into marketing. 
2. Strength training. I know there are runners who don’t lift a weight and can fly through a 3 hour marathon like its no big deal. I dont like you. that’s not true. I love all runners and people that are naturally fit and strong without having to lift a finger.  in a slightly envious way. anyway, I need strength. 
I have been thinking about what I did differently this spring from last summer and fall. I did quite a bit more strength training, core work and leg exercises last summer. Jillian and I were tight.  I could have done the whole shred dvd without watching it.  maybe.  and maybe I should get a life.  not so much this spring.  weights have taken a bit of a backseat. time to move them to the front.
3.  Lululemon. I’m just going to throw this one out there, call me crazy, but looking and feeling like a superstar when I’m running is just fabulous.  
Wasn’t feeling the fab vibe there, but I tried

besides fabulous, it’s functional. Is it too much to ask for a running bottom that doesn’t end up at my boobs, or lack thereof, by mile 2? I think not. lululemon figured that out. thank you. fashion and comfort. I could not ask for more. except maybe for more reasonable pricing, but that would be like hoping for gas to be $3 a gallon.
4.  Bad races. in hindsight, I am thankful for the disaster at gansett, and I am thankful for the shin splints. if every situation in life was peachy perfect, never presenting a challenge, we would all be pretty boring. and dull. and stagnant. we would never learn, change and grow. upward and onward to find the next challenge to rise above. bring on the bad races, as long as there are plenty of good ones to make the bad ones sweet.
5.  The track. for speed.  It’s lovely. truly, it is. I did not know of this glorious thing called speedwork at the track until this spring, but you fly. and it’s great.  try it out. get faster.
or take cute pics of children there.  it won’t make you fast, but you’ll have some memories. those are a nice gift too.
6.  Mizuno Musha. my new favorite shoe. I have a thing for lightweight sneaks. I just love them. I want to wear these all the time. for every run.  they love my feet like no other mizuno.  you NEED good sneakers when you run. injury will find you if you run in old, poor fitting sneakers. the truth. get some good sneaks, then run. every joint and bone in your body will thank you for it. 
7.  Avocados. this is just one food item that I love and believe to be perfect in many ways – supplying my hard working bod with the nutrition it craves. I say, an avocado a day keeps the doctor away. very original.  I’ve also recently found spicy honey mustard as a major addition to my lunchtime wrap.  Where has this wonderful condiment been and why have I not been using it??  I’m a big believer in that nutrition is important in running well. and living well for that matter. you are what you eat. have an avocado. then an apple. and stay away from the donut. most of the time. 
That’s what I’ve come up with so far. I don’t really run with music, so I can’t comment on that, although I’m sure those of you who do run with music would put it in this category of all things that make running lots of miles bearable and enjoyable.  I also do not use a lot of fuel on training runs, because I don’t like much of what is out there, so there’s another no comment. feel free to add to my ever growing list. 
Quick update on the home front…

We ventured to TJ Maxx today, and that was utterly not exciting. I bought a dress that would get me arrested if I wore it in public because it’s so short. I didn’t try it on, I just grabbed it because it looked cute and I had monkey boy with me so we were on a time crunch. that’s what I get for grabbing from the juniors section and thinking its gonna happen. Not so. time to grow up.  We did end up with a lot of pillows and towels. It was that kind of time to buy the necessities trip, not as much fun as seeing what fun designer jeans we can weed out. Luke is enjoying our new purchases. that’s nice. 
And I’ve actually been cooking. don’t fall over. I have a new favorite little veggie dish. and tonight I topped it with my new favorite marinade/dressing that I made up because of my new love for spicy honey mustard.  eat your heart out – broccoli, cauliflower and gold potatoes. quite tasty. 
So easy.  wrap those spuds in plastic and microwave, cut up and mix with the microwaved frozen veggies.  continue to massacre the nice veggies by sauteeing in a frying pan in the nice light dressing.  to ensure all nutrients are zapped from the dish.  but hoping some stick around after they are cooked to near death.
Honey mustard dressing: no measurements, because I don’t do that, guesstimated:

~ 1/3 cup water
~ 1/4 cup canola oil
~ 3TBSP spicy honey mustard
Splash of white wine vinegar
Any kind of onion, I used dehydrated onion, but I’m sure scallions or shallots would be lovely
Garlic salt
Salt and pepper
Whisk together and toss with whatever microwaved, devoid of nutrient veggie you would like. Or if you like to be healthy, throw it on a fresh salad

I do believe that is far too much info for one post. that should keep your head spinning for awhile. take a couple Advil and you will be fine. 
Speed work is on the agenda for tomorrow, but so is a 100 degree day with 1000% humidity, so that’s going to be determined. the Mushas are ready for some fast action though.
What is your favorite veggie?

What is your favorite kind of dressing?

How many times a week do you incorporate strength work?


Superwoman and Smart Choices

We have some workouts to talk about. get ready.
Wednesday – I mentioned I wanted to do 10 miles. What I want and what actually happens are rarely the same.  I want to pull together a nice non workout outfit, but I just can’t seem to get out of my comfy running clothes.  I’m ok with that. I did 6 that morning and went back out for a short and slllloooooowwwww 3. really slow. but it made 9 miles for the day
Thursday – is usually a running day. sleep trumped running and I got to sleep in until 6am.  be still my heart. 6 am is so much nicer than 5 am.  it’s still 6 am. and that’s still in the too early to be functioning category. my kids don’t care.  that meant no run. I will admit, I moped for approximately 37 minutes.  then I put my game face on, readjusted my attitude and my day and had a slice of get over it for breakfast. and I used and abused the stair master during nap time. my saving grace.  50 minutes speed intervals/hills. tells me I did 8 miles. probably not accurate. but I looked like this after, so it did kick my booty
Friday – hello 5 am. I really don’t like you.  like, I wish you didn’t exist.  thursday claimed the non running day.  friday, tag you’re it for the run.  not a bone in my body wants to be out on the road at this ungodly hour. The alternative is chasing around testy two year old. I’ll run.  about 6.75 miles, about 50 min, about 7:24 ish pace, just about a pretty good run if I ever saw one . I didn’t have the watch on.  Just checked the clock. kitchen clock tells me it was about 50 mins. I was pleasantly surprised because this run felt a lot slower than that. go me. good pace. glad I hit the road.
I love running without the garmin on non super hard, run your heart out training days. I’ve learned I’ve got enough push of my own without the watch barking at me that I’m going too slow.  Running watch-less puts the i love to run back in running.  Love it.
36.5 miles for the week. one more running day. Good stuff.

Every now and then, I’ve been known to make some smart decisions. sometimes I don’t. Let’s talk about some of the smarter ones and how I’m kind of like superwoman today.
1.  It is not always an easy task to get three children fed, dressed, ready for school, as well as myself and my husband. he needs help sometimes too. my 4th child. It must be noted that today, June 15th, I ran my almost 7 miles, made a nice breakfast for everyone (myself included – super crank comes out if mama doesn’t eat ASAP after the run), had everyone dressed and ready for school, got myself showered and dressed in my Friday best – I call it shamrock glam
Not everyone can rock the old 5k race tshirt and pull off this shamrock glam look.  I can. I was in comfort mode today.

All of this morning craziness was accomplished by 8:15 am. be impressed. not sure that has ever happened. call me shera. Or superwoman.  either one will do. So, it was a smart choice to get my bum moving at 5 am. it always is a smart choice.
2. I cooked a nice meal for my family. I have been in a total I don’t want to cook or think about what to cook for dinner funk.  big time. surprisingly, the children are alive and well and no one is starving, but meals have been less than impressive. think french toast and lots of grilling.  I kind of pulled it together Wednesday night. And made this little creation. 
The unfortunate thing is that friends of ours came over. Visiting friends are not unfortunate, but being unaware that we would be dining with them and one of them is gluten free, that’s unfortunate.  wasted energy cooking a meal.  bummer. we ended up doing sushi takeout. and this is lunch for the rest of the week.
3.  Strength training is a pretty smart decision. My weak little arms are just easing back into strength training after the elbow incident a few weeks ago. little righty is still pretty sore and can’t do most things, but we are working on some stuff. One exercise that I love in particular is doing upper body strength moves while doing a wall sit.  intense. 
I have a few personal photographers. this one happened to be 5 years old and impatient. hence the blur.
Multitasking at its finest. multiple body parts at once.  Kids play, I get strong.  win win all around.  this is great for runners because it strengthens those quads pretty nicely.  runners tend to have a plethora of knee problems, one of which is appropriately called runners knee. You can help your sweet and very necessary to running knees avoid this by having strong quads.  I did a lot of shoulder work in the wall sit position.  keep your core nice and tight and you’re getting a good workout.  that’s about all I can do. biceps hurt my baby arm. in good time it’ll be ready to work hard again.  much of my “extras” – strength training, massage sticking, rolling activities happen wherever the kids are.  there tend to be walls most places, so this is a good one.  pull up a wall, grab some weights, have a seat and start pumping out those arm workouts.
4.  We have a new familey pet.
 her name is Shelby the hermit crab.  right now she lives in a plastic cup. right now, I’m not sure if she is a he or a she. I’m not even sure how you tell the sex of a hermit crab.   I’m not quite sure that hermit crabs are male or female.  I’m not really sure I care.  I’m going to call this a good parenting decision. my daughter loves animals. she desperately wanted the class hermit crab for the summer. the lucky child to bring it home was to be randomly drawn from a hat from whatever children brought in the little paper saying they were allowed to take it if they were selected. how could I say no to her.  It was either a horse or a hermit crab.  Call me crazy but I think crabs are a little bit lower maintenance than horses.  sure. put your name in my sweet animal loving child. meanwhile I’m thinking she won’t get it. she got it. and we have Shelby. I can only imagine Shelby will be getting some fishy friends.
5.  Lululemon is always a smart choice.  
kids in tow, off to lulu we went. shopping with kids is kind of good and bad.  I take that back – given the opportunity, it would generally be without children, but that’s generally not the case, so- they can serve as damage control because you, meaning me, has to get in and out ASAP before crazy man knocks down every mannequin. Bad because that speed shopping could potentially lead to impulse buying. there was none of that impulse stuff happening today. I practiced good self control and we were super speedy in the store.  the jet engine hand dryer in the bathroom rocked Luke to the core of fear and we had to ditch pretty quickly. thank you Luke. I will divulge the contents of the bag at a later time. I will note that the item I purchased was on sale. And I do think it’s comical to speak of lululemon and sale in the same paragraph.
Baby girl #2 graduated from pre-k today. oh my, world. here she comes. she’s a big kindergartner now. 
She actually has two more days of school and big girl still has 4 days. then I am the mother of a first grader and a kindergartner.  and another little crazy person that doesn’t fit anywhere yet.  I don’t know how that could be seeing as I’m not a day over 21. I love those precious little people of mine. crazy how much a child can melt your heart.  enough of that. getting sentimental stuff.
Longish run on the agenda for tomorrow and who knows what other shenanigans we will come up with.
What are your weekend plans?

Who is racing and what are you doing?  GOOD LUCK!!!

Who has had a pet hermit crab?  it’s very exciting. Ours has already turned from a female to a male.  Just because. 

Mizuno Loves Me. A Giveaway

Ok, they love me and approximately 600 other people. and anyone who purchases their shoes. but we’re going to talk about me and Mizuno.  and then we’re going to talk about how that can benefit you.  before all of this crazy running talk commences, we are going to talk about the
Very uneventful. cross training day.  I’ll give you 3 guesses what I did.  It starts with stair and ends with master and lives in my basement. We got cozy for about an hour doing the speed interval setting. Love.  add on 10 minutes of strength in the driveway while my crazies harassed each other and covered themselves in chalk at 6:30am. Happy Tuesday morning.
Back to Mizuno.  Remember I said I might have an opportunity for you to get some sneaks?  Well, it all started with this…
Mizuno sent me this very personal, thought out, hand written invitation….along with 599 other people. It still felt personal.
The Mezamashii Project

Mezamashii means brilliant in Japanese.
According to their invitation, Mizuno is
‘on a quest to deliver more Mezamashii — more ecstatic, electric, wind  in your heart running.
More brilliant running  

Man, who doesn’t want THAT kind of running?!?!?

They continue on in the invite by saying,
‘Instead of spending millions of dollars on advertising to talk about our shoes, we’re putting our money where your feet are — by giving you a free pair.’

Mizuno, you are so smart. I could not agree more with your marketing logic.

See.  They do love me. And I love them putting their money where my feet are.
I am going to share the Mizuno love by putting their money where YOUR feet are.
Every one deserves some more Mezamashii in their run.  Everyone needs a little more brilliance in their training. Mizuno wants to make that happen for you.
Mizuno was my first real pair of sneakers. I wore them for my first marathon. I loved them. After over three years, I’ve come back to them.
I’ve since started running in a more minimal shoe. I LOVE the Musha for that.
Musha to the right. Precision to the left.  
I am also currently loving the Wave Presicion and the Wave Rider 15. 

Wave rider

Wave rider pre run
I might also have just gotten the Wave elixir.
 Those are pretty sweet too.  Mizuno has definitely figured out how to make a brilliant shoe in performance and appearance.
I want you to experience the brilliance.
Here’s the deal my friends…
2 lucky readers will be chosen to each win any pair of Mizuno sneakers up to a $149.99 value

To Enter:

1.  Mandatory- Leave a comment telling me you want a brilliant run:) you don’t have to say that exactly, just tell me you want some Mizuno money where your feet are for a fantastic running experience. Or something like that. You can really impress me if you tell me which Mizuno sneaks you want and write a short excerpt explaining why.  Kidding on the excerpt part. You can tell me which ones you want though.
Extra Entries – Leave a SEPARATE comment for each and every extra entry on this post:
1.  Follow me on twitter, msfitrunner, and Tweet about this giveaway and/or shout it from the rooftops of your blog and send your friends over here. one extra entry.  Leave one extra comment
2. Follow @mizunorunning on twitter. Leave another comment telling me so
3. “like” Mizuno on Facebook and tell me. In yet another comment
4. Subscribe to my blog – over yonder on the right side of the page – you’ll get a nice little email letting you know when some juicy new reading material is up.  Not only would this make me oh so happy, you get an extra entry for doing so. Leave another comment. 

Let’s do the math my friends – that’s a total of up to 5 separate entries to win some sneaks. TWO winners will be chosen. 

This giveaway will run through next Wednesday June 20th at midnight. I will pick two winners through
You will have until Friday the 22nd to get back to me so I can hook you up with some free sneaks – if I do not hear from the winners by Friday, backup winners will be chosen
Have at it my friends!!!
*edited to add – because I’m so tech savvy, this posted twice, don’t ask why – comments are closed on the first post, but comments that are on there will be counted in the giveaway, not to worry:) they will be counted in the same order they were made, but all comments will now be posted on THIS post.  Thanks!!

The Stairmaster Post


Workout – stairmaster crosstraining day.  45 minutes.  speed intervals.  6 something miles.  which is completely irrelevant, really, because I was not running. I was stepping.  there were no miles involved.  which is exactly why I love my stairmaster.  and why I love my crosstraining.  I get a killer workout.  without the pavement pounding.  that which I also love.  more on that in a minute.

Let’s drag this post on a bit, as usual, before I give you any information that might actually be useful to you in your day to day.

Truth be told, today might have been one of the most uninteresting and uneventful days.  so I will share it with you.

1.  We woke up at 5am.  not to an alarm clock.  to an alarm child.  per the usual.  not exciting.

2.  I was indifferent about working out at that hour because I wasn’t running and I wasn’t sure about my crosstraining plan for the day.  I was in workout twilight zone, neither here nor there, but pretty confident it would happen.  still not exciting.

3.  I did get showered and dressed for the day before leaving the house.  you’re welcome world.  that is not exciting.  in the least.  but it is a generally noteworthy thing because this would be my wardrobe of choice.  everyday.  it’s lululemon head to toe and it is magical.  and it’s hidden behind a sticker covered, fingerprinted mirror.  yay.

iphone pics 935

I’m comfortable in it.  I feel like a rockstar.  a workout rockstar.  there is a reason they charge that much money for workout clothing.  it brings out the magic in the girl.  or guy.  true.  get yourself some wunder unders and see for yourself.  it is also generally noteworthy, but not necessarily exciting, when a female, especially of the ‘stay at home mama’ kind, is having a particularly ‘nicehairday, skinnynotbloated, cuteandsassy, makeuplooksgood’ kind of day.  that was kind of this kind of day.  and I think it was mostly due to the fact that a) I shoved my kids in the basement to play this morning while I stairmastered and b) took a shower as noted above.  like I say – the little things. but not exciting.

4.  We went to Target.  not exciting in the least.  but I got the strict necessities and left without committing grand theft.  somehow, some dollar item usually ends up in Luke’s pocket or some inconspicuous place to be found when we get home.  not so this time.  I made sure to keep this Target trip on the up and up.  all items paid and accounted for.  some nutritious and delicious highlights that are not very exciting…

iphone pics 931

nutella. combined with peanut butter is a deadly combo.

iphone pics 932

these are pretty tasty too.

5.  The hubs got some new FREE mizuno sneaks in the mail, thanks to yours truly.

iphone pics 930

the beautiful little child was certainly not free. she costs a pretty penny.

that is completely not exciting to me because they were not MY free sneaks (mine should be coming tomorrow, which I will surely share that piece of exciting mail with you).  I am working on a fun giveaway that just might have something to do with mizuno.  that would be exciting.  for you and me.  stay tuned.

6.  Not cooking dinner tonight is actually pretty exciting.  Dinner courtesy of whole foods sushi bar is also pretty exciting.

iphone pics 933

this calamari salad I got is very exciting and may warrant a daily trip to whole foods until I grow completely ill of it.  what’s also exciting about this sushi dinner extravaganza is that yours truly has no cleanup after.  just toss in the trash.  easy peasy.  so exciting.  and fantastic.  I can hardly stand it.

7.  Technically, the bachelorette was last night but we are going to include it in the post to enhance the non-excitingness of me today.  the word on the street is that this season is pretty boring, or not exciting.  that’s what I’m hearing through the bachelorette grapevine.  which is interesting because I found this show to be thoroughly entertaining last night.  so if the show is boring and it completely amuses me, it’s safe to say I am pretty boring these days.  or easily amused.  and I’m ok with that.  I’m also ok with being into the bachelorette this season.  mindless, stress free entertainment.  I’m highly amused by all of these grown men swooning over little miss southern bell.  she’s adorable.  and I kind of want her hair.  but that’s all I want. her life seems too exciting for me.  I probably couldn’t keep up with all the action.

That’s all of the non exciting things for now.  We can move on to the stairmaster.  fun stuff.  I LOVE it.  here she is…

iphone pics 894

that’s my view.  no side handrails.

iphone pics 902

that’s the model.

Like I said, I got mine used but in like new condition on ebay 5 1/2 years ago, and it was probably almost half the price of buying it new.  so look around on ebay, craigslist, or whatever other online source that would giveaway offer discounted exercise equipment.  This has done me good through shin splints, running time off and getting back into running without getting injured or losing my running is happy and jolly and fun and not stressful attitude.  it’s giving me good balance.  and a really good workout at the same time.

I like this particularly over the elliptical because it takes up less space.  I don’t have a lot of extra home space to be used up by clunky fitness equipment.  this is clunky enough, but it’s not as long.

I also like it because it gives a very different workout from running.  but very beneficial to running, I think.  as long as you don’t hang all over it like a rag doll.  that’s just lame.  and cheating your workout.  which will only harm you in the long run.  don’t do it.

A lot of people are concerned that it will make your legs huge.  not true.  no further comment.  but doing cardio on this will not make your legs look like a body builder.  It will give you some great tone, definition and butt lift though.  I can assure you that.

And lastly, HERE is a little post I did awhile back on how to get faster.  there have been some inquiries about that.  read with caution.  I’m a stay at home mom.  that’s all I have to say.

What is your favorite form of cross training?

What is your favorite or most used speed workout?

Running Seasons


Workout(s) – and a couple of fantastic ones at that.  Run.  run.  run.  Someone asked me the other day if I really loved to run.  just with my past races and my big disappointments and what not, she said, ‘do you love to run?’  without hesitation, I said why yes I do.  funny question to a runner, but a good one.  I do love to run.  and I do love it more now than I did 3 months ago.  3 months ago when I was running faster and farther and with more confidence.  then, I was broken down with a little shin splint action and a couple spirit crushing races and a little mental/running burnout that called for a little break time.  and that is what I needed.  sometimes you need to be broken down a little bit to appreciate what you love.  sometimes you need to lose a little bit to figure out what you want.  take a step back and realize how something really fits into your life.  and to come back with a different, better attitude.  and sometimes you appreciate it more when you come back with less and have to work your way back to your best.  so yes, I love to run.  and I will really love to run when my legs are moving even faster.  working on that.  slowly.

Yesterday – 6 miles.  no pace.  no stress.  no watch.  no clue how I was running.  I can’t believe I am admitting it, but I am a garmin-less running convert.  It’s a funny thing.  somehow, back in the ancient of days, before the running with a gps idea came about, people were running, and they were running fast.  baffling how they did it without guidance from a gps, but they did.  amazing.  I am getting on the boat.  I will run with my garmin, but I am hoping to run more without it than with it and use it more as a check in.  ditch the watch once in awhile.  it will probably do you good.  I ran 2.5 miles to meet my girlfriend and dragged her along with me for the last 3.5.  perfectly humid, sweaty, early morning run.

and I had energy to burn after that.  so I hopped on the stairmaster for 30 minutes.  even more perfect.

and then my little anna bam had a hankering for Jillian.

iphone pics 905

happy to oblige little lady.  get on your gear and get moving.

iphone pics 904

she could do more of the workouts than I could with my withering right arm that still can’t lift things.  except little boys named luke because he doesn’t understand that it hurts mommy’s arm when he throws a tantrum in the coffee shop and I have to peel him off the floor and out to the car, kicking and flailing or when he tries to climb the counter at Sweet Frog to get into the toppings and I have to hold him back with a death grip.  love.  where was I.  Jillian.  I sat there and did ab work while she worked it out with J-dog.  and then she ran a mile with the hubs later.  my little athlete.

so that completes the workouts for that day.  no it doesn’t.  the day ended with me sitting on the couch watching a movie that I can’t pronounce, eating these…

iphone pics 909

they were 2 for $3.  which means I could have just gotten 1 package for $1.50, but I felt the need to buy 2 packages.  I only had two.  I LOVE anything mint chocolate.  junior mints go down like water.  I have a decent amount of self control when things are individually wrapped.  not so much with a bag of m&m’s, which is why I don’t buy them, or these….

iphone pics 910

but I did buy those  because they were buy 2 get one free, so I had to get 3.  I obviously got a discount for that one that is opened.  I actually have pretty good self control with these suckers as well.  My sweet tooth has really tamed down a lot and I only need a little bit to keep me happy.  it’s really only the bag of m&m’s that get me.  again, that’s why they are never in my house.  that was my evening workout.

Today – 7.25 miles.  and still very humid and sweaty.  I love CT weather.  this was my first early outdoor run – feet on the pavement at 5:15am.  regretting going to bed at 10:30pm.  happy I pulled my bum out of bed anyway.  and thanking the good Lord for the early sunrise so I could get it done pre-children rising and attacking lovingly adorning me with their presence and allowing me to cook for and dress them.  I’m going to take full advantage of early days.  7 min/mile avg pace.  rolling hills throughout.  fine.  I did wear the garmin.  and I did push it a little at the end.  6:25 min mile for the last mile.  actually very happy I pulled that one out of nowhere.  I will not feel badly about pushing the pace today.  or about wearing the garmin.  it was the kind of run I wanted to do.  nevermind what coach B said about running easy paces for a few more weeks (technically that should be an easy pace consistently for me.  in time)  but he also said run how you feel.  some days will be great and some days will be not so great, and slow.  today was good.  tomorrow will be slow/easy, sans garmin.

so I thought it would be fun to make this post SUPER long and see how long you can stick with me.  I’m going to continue talking about running, and ‘run’ through a little bit of Katie running history for you newer peeps that are braving my blog.  Get your pens and paper out.  there will be  test at the end.  I am finding that a lot of runner’s go through A LOT of different phases in running.  I honestly used to think that all runners just ran and it was always happy and rainbows and lululemon filled dreams.  not so my friends.  It is rare that things go pretty smoothly all the time where nothing changes, la dee da everything is always perfect in running world.  even with elite runners and olympic athletes, a lot of them have their share of seasons and ups and downs.  Runners go through different training plans, styles, phases.  Runners go through different injury and recovery processes that slow down the running and decrease the mileage a ton.  Runners go through a lot of different seasons of emotion about running, how they feel about it, what their goals are and how and when they want to reach those goals.

I know for me, my running perspectives and feelings have changed a lot over the past 6 months and they continue to change and to teach me about myself.  So here’s a little timeline of ME.

Summer 2011

I wanted to do the VT50 in September 2011.  Was starting to train for it.  not really sure how to train for it.  and probably wouldn’t have been prepared had I gotten in to run it.  Registration was closed, couldn’t run it.  Plan B.  Run a marathon instead.  total gear change from running a 50.  My 50 plan was to run VERY slow, steady, and probably walk a lot.  I just wanted to experience it.  any training I did reflected that mentality.  Marathons were not on my radar at all.

October 2011 – I like to run.  but I’m bummed about the 50.  I’ll just do a marathon for fun.

Plan B marathon.  Hartford Marathon.  shooting for 3:15 finish that I very arbitrarily pulled out of my bum.  decided to run with a pace group.  worst decision I made for that race.  It wasn’t MY run.  I will never run with a pace group again.  I was running the pacers run.  horrible race for me physically.  Finished in 3:17.  fine.  I think I never want to run another marathon again.  I was so miserable.  3 hours later….just kidding. I want to run MY marathon now.  not the pacers. signed up for Harrisburg 4 weeks later.

hartford marathon luke

November 2011 – I just love to run phase.  kind of a newbie runner.  I love running.  and I think I could be fast.

Harrisburg Marathon.  Ran my run.  excruciating ITBand pain started at mile 14.  quitting wasn’t an option.  just had to figure out how to finish.  I finished.  painfully.  3:11.  on cloud 9.  Now I want to hit 3 hours.  and I dove right into training for the next one because I am an all or nothing. I want it and I want it now and I’m going to start working for it now.  Big mistake.  I should have taken much more time off from running.  solely to avoid what happened before my next April Marathon.  total burnout.  and injury.  and I realize the competetive in me takes over the ‘I love to run because I love to run’ in me.  and I need to find a balance.

February 2012

Ran a hilly half marathon in the middle of marathon training.  good in theory, but looking back, it threw off my long run schedule, and I missed out on more long miles than I should have for my marathon training.  Got a new half marathon PR.  1:28.  still running good.  injury free.

Speedwork continues.  loving it.  feeling fast.  feeling confident.  injury creeps in…

March 2012

Last minute, innocent little 5k.  gave me a new PR.  18:42.  and it gave me pretty rough shin splints 6 weeks out from my marathon and a handful of long runs and tempo/speedwork to do.  tough place to be.  I was only able to run a handful of times before the marathon.  I should have ADJUSTED MY MARATHON GOALS, to mentally keep me in the game.  but I was a stubborn invincible runner.  and I didn’t.

iphone pics 463

April 2012

Gansett Marathon.  3:21 finish.  a debacle.  I lost it mentally.  My shin started acting up as well as my IT Band, but I think I made the pain worse by my really poor attitude during the run.  I could have run a better race, but let myself check out when I realized I wasn’t going to hit my unrealistic goal.  and that was a HUGE lesson for me.  I needed this race to LEARN a lot about who I am as a runner and a person.  it was meant to be this way as a little part of what will make me the runner I am.  Running is not all of me.  I love it.  and I want to be good at it.  but a bad race doesn’t define me.  nor does a good one.  it’s a hobby.  and I will enjoy it first.

iphone pics 652

End of April 2012

Nashville Rock and Roll Marathon.  Mentally a better race, physically not so much.  3:42.  you can just read about here, here, and here.  I say I had zero expectation of this race.  but I always go in with some expectation.  and I really need to learn how and when to tone that high expectation of myself down and really just have fun, no pressure races.


And all of that put me in to a two week complete running hiatus.  A good friend is going to coach me, more my mind than my running because he says, ‘you’ve got the running part down.  a marathon is 90% mental.  we need to get you back in the mental game of running’  aye aye captain!

and I’m back to LOVING running.  without any pain.  with or without the garmin.  fast or slow.  long or short.  I want to get out and run.  and June is my month of just running.  because before my fall 2011 marathons, that’s what I was doing.  I never did speedwork.  I never did a tempo run.  I never followed a plan.  I never hit more than 40 miles in a week.  and I did a couple pretty decent marathons.  and now I find the balance of running how I know to run, and training to get faster and stronger while keeping the whole experience happy and fun.  while learning how to apply just enough pressure to keep me on my toes, but not so much that I want to lose my mind.  and attempt to remain injury free.  and replace words like ‘doubt’ and ‘I can’t do that’ with ‘I am strong’ and ‘I am capable’ and ‘I can do whatever I set my mind to’.  that’s the season I’m in now.

and that should be it for now.  I can’t type anymore.  and I’m pretty sure you have left the computer by now.  I will chat with you cool kids tomorrow about my ever loving stairmaster.  I’ve gotten a few inquiries as to why I love it so much and what kind it is.  I’ll give you the 411.  but this post can’t handle any more info.

What ‘season’ of running do you feel like you are in?

Who is getting ready for a race this weekend?

What is your favorite chocolate/other flavor combo?

Run Wrap Up


Workout – cross training day.  killer stairmaster workout.  45 minutes speed intervals.  I actually tried not holding on to the handles the entire time.  it is killer.  it was also killer because it was 90 degrees today and 1167% humidity.  that’s right.  hot.  I was going to throw in a sexy little post workout ab ripper photo, but when I went to take it, my I feel completely bloated feelings were confirmed.  no need to post scary things like that.  so I give you a picture of my super sexy, sleek, un-bloated stairmaster.  she’s a beauty.

iphone pics 893

I’m tired.  just gonna get that out there in the open.  I’m not sure exactly why, because I got to sleep in this morning until 6am.  by 6:15am we were doing this…

iphone pics 888

and shortly thereafter, that progressed to this

iphone pics 889

I am not one to dash the hopes of a little boy who wants to ‘go pee pee on the potty mama, peeeeaaaasse!!!’  no sir.  not me.  whether it be in the bathroom or on the front step for all to see, I let the boy do his thing.  and that continued for most of the day.  aside from a trip to the grocery store and other tuesday things.

and that has left me tired.  the boy thought otherwise of taking a nap today.  leaving his room rearranged and me even more tired.  no, I would not like some cheese with my whine, I try to limit dairy, but thanks for asking.  let me continue….the crazy pollen is making my head miserable and now making my body feel achy.  my arm kind of just hurts constantly.  that’s a little exhausting.  we topped off the stellar day in the highschool auditorium with tons of little ballerinas dress rehearsing for the big show on saturday.

iphone pics 896

naturally Luke sat like a darling little child and watched the whole thing hopped every row, ran up and down the aisles and screamed his bloody head off.  I’m tired.  and it was 90 degrees today.

I’m recruiting more little self talks lately about being in the moment and really cherishing my little cherubs and the crazy that they bring.  all the time.  and the love that they bring.  all the time.  it’s hitting me that my two baby girls are going to be gone all day at school next fall.  just like that.  and I don’t know how or when that happened.  because I swore it was just yesterday that I was sending my Alexandra girl to her first day of preschool.  cliche.  but true.  the days are long right now, but the years seem to have flown.  so I’m trying to say ‘yes’ to them more and less ‘not right now, in a minute’.  sometimes it’s easy.  sometimes it’s not.

So.  the objective of this post was to chat about information in regards to something that might enlighten you about running, fitness, health, or anything remotely related.  that’s not going to happen.  not in any coherent manner anyway. because I’m tired, as I mentioned.  all I can do right now it talk about me.  and my running.  and hope that you don’t get more stupid as a result.  or wonder why you are still reading this ‘running’ blog.  my running seems interesting enough.  probably just as interesting as looking at my wedding pictures.  don’t worry.  I won’t take it that far.  back to running.  I get out and run and am happy to be out.  yes, I get anxious about my speed.  when will it be time to get back into speedwork and speed training and tempo runs.  and yes, I get anxious about how much endurance I’ve lost.  but I think about what I have now.  I have healthy legs.  I have a bum arm.  awesome.  I have strength.  I have the knowledge of what I can do.  I have the ability to grow.  and learn.  and I keep learning more about running and myself.  good stuff.

so I decided to do a little speed test on my Sunday 7 miler, just to see.  I was running 5:30-40’s for mile repeats back at the track in March.  that seems so far off right now, but I know it’s in me and I will find it again.  so I had no expecations with this run, it was to bring on the challenge a little bit with the pace, but keep it short and sweet with the faster pace.

It looked like: 10 minutes fast, 3 minutes jog, 10 minutes fast, 3 minutes jog…and then just run a slow comfortable pace back home.  I did an out and back.  I don’t know why, but I didn’t warm up.  I went right into the 10 minutes fast.  I never learn.  I miss those injuries I guess.  anyway, I was pretty happy with it.  I didn’t push it all out and my 10 minutes fast were right at 6:30 and my jogs were between 7:30-8.  and looking back at the pace, for the last few miles of the run, I progressed from 8:20 mile to sub 7.  and it was about 88 degrees.  it was not my best run ever, but it didn’t have to be.  I used to get in a constant competition where each run had to get better and better.  not so my friendly friends.  each run has a purpose.  I ran in my brooks pureflow for this one.  love them.

iphone pics 886

Monday’s 10 mile was a perfectly pieced together run.  I ran with my baby boy in the jogger for 2 miles, to the coffee shop and back.  I then ran 3.6 with my neighbor, who was jogging by and I tagged along.  I don’t know that she will ever run with me again.  I think I stress people out.  they think I want to be going faster and they are never going fast enough, when in reality – like I mentioned, most of my speed is lost somewhere back in the month of March, so all is A OK with a slower pace!  and then to complete the run, I did a 4.6 mile out and back.  another hot run.  which I think is great training.  10.2 miles total.  in this snazzy outfit.

iphone pics 885

I’m not sure how many good running decisions I make.  wearing all black on an 88 degree run in the sun day.

and my mizuno precisions.  great sneaks.

iphone pics 887

I generally choose these over the waverider 15’s lately, just because I’m a snob for the lighter weight shoe. and this one is perfect for me now – not too light and not too heavy.  i’m goldilocks the runner.

and I felt a well deserved cross training day today.  as I’m getting back into running and getting my mileage up, I’m trying not to run more than 2 days in a row.  and I think it will do my body good.  I am hoping for 40 miles this week.  and I think it’s doable.  by the end of june, I would like to be up to 50 a week and hang there for awhile to see how it feels.  I guess my marathon training will really start end of june/beginning of july.  excited.  the goal now is to keep running as stress free, happy go lucky, fun and exciting as possible.  and I think it’s going well.  that means lots of runs without the garmin. no prob.

oh, here’s something healthy I can throw in here!  My lunch…

I switched it up a bit today from my usual flatout wrap that I have everyday.  I went for an open faced sammy on sprouted grain bread with hummus, salsa, eggwhites and avocado.

iphone pics 892

looks delish.  yes? no?  it would probably turn your stomach to actually witness the consumption.  it’s not a clean meal.  maybe if it had a top, but that would have been too much for me.  I try to eat an avocado a day.  not a whole avocado, more like a serving.  and I love that mango salsa.  this was a tasty non sandwich my friends.

get out there and run.  for fun.  for fast, or slow.  for however you are feeling today.  take the pressure off.  and you might surprise yourself with a pretty decent experience.  and have an avocado while you’re at it.  they’re healthy.  believe me.  and go do something intelligent to make up for the brain cells you may have lost as a result of reading this all over the place post.  there’s always a point.  its up to you to find it.