Tag Archives: mizuno musha

Driveway Races and Strength

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Workout

So, I fear the days of my rest day Friday are over now that marathon training has commenced. My rest day is Monday. and that’s it. but Fridays will be a fairly light day because of long run Saturdays. 
Run – 3 miles easy and 30 minutes strength. 



I was doing my driveway workout while the kids played and was then forced into JM 30 day shred by my overly energetic 4 year old. she loves her JM. she also loves her t. swift. and will sing with her one day. so she tells me. 
Let’s talk about strength workouts. in the driveway. and wherever else they may happen to happen because I go where the kids go. 
But let’s first chat about the happenings of the day. because I’m feeling chatty and I’m feeling an extra special long post. because my posts are always so brief and to the point and lacking random nonsense. everyone needs more of someone else’s random nonsense in their lives. let’s begin. 
1.  For some reason, instead of buying and making our own coffee, we have been just getting coffee at the coffee shop. My morning iced coffee is one of the greatest parts of my day. pathetic. but true. somehow, every day, it’s a wonderful surprise when I look in the fridge and see my iced coffee sitting there. waiting for me. however, today, I was disappointed. I ran out of my stevia and I had no sweetener for my treat. I tried brown sugar. I was desperate.  no go. I tried sugar in the raw. still a no go. It tasted not so great, but I felt compelled to drink it. So I am still drinking my morning coffee.
2.  I only had to run a few miles today, so it was nice to wake up early but not have to run. note- I did not wake up early because it was nice to do that. I woke up early because my energizer bunny in the next room was pounding on his door. he was ready to get the day started.  as usual.
3.  Gymnastics camp is over for my limber little girls. I would be sad that the three hour window in my afternoon when my house is quiet is gone, but they start camp on Monday. all is well. 
4.  I had a brief moment of panic when my garmin would not function today. I have been talking down on the garmin lately, saying how I don’t need to run every run with it anymore. perhaps it was just giving me a taste of what it would be like to not have it at all. no thanks. I need you garmin. hubs fixed it. the world keeps turning. 
5.  I stumbled upon the wide wide world of photo editing. oh my. Instagram is fantastic, but there is more. pic stitch is just pure fun and excitement for this stay at home mom with no life. possibilities are endless. get ready. 
6.  We did some driveway racing. the kids raced each other. I raced the kids. good times. Healthy fun. awards were presented. 
Alexandra was very nervous to race me.  she beat me by at least 3 strides. it must have been the crocs. wave of the running future. get on that Mizuno, croc inspired sneaks. 
Back to strength. I love my strength workouts.  I wish I took more time to do them.  what strength does for me:
– it makes me feel strong. wow. what a brilliant thought.  but really, it’s a good good feeling. I barely did half of JM, and I was drenched, and out of breath. granted, it was crazy hot out, but still. I was working. 
– I like being toned. Toned is nice. I know there’s this thought that lifting is not conducive to running, or distance running in particular.  I’m fairly certain that my 5-10 pound weights are not going to turn me into the hulk. and hinder my running abilities. 
– likewise, I have zero proof and have composed nary a research paper to present to you that lifting weights will improve your running abilities, but I’m fairly certain that it’s probably beneficial, and there probably has been research done to support my unfounded thoughts – and it will probably help you in the long run. Ha. I’m so witty. If anything, you will just feel better about yourself and feel stronger and be a better runner in return. but don’t get all hulky on me. no good.  





strength training doesn’t only have to be in the form of weight lifting. There are many outlets for strengthening that have no weights involved. I’m a big fan of the P90X yoga, Pilates, (I just ordered some new DVDs) and a plethora of other avenues to strengthen without ever touching the gym or using weights. That’s exciting because it breaks up the running and adds a little depth to the fitness activities. 
– I can do these workouts whenever and wherever the kids are. I can play with them while I’m working out, tend to their every need and be where they are. super convenient to do with kids around.
– strength training enables me to make these wonderfully beautiful facial expressions. that only come out whilst I am heaving my 10 pound dumbbell. serious work happening. 
I do not know why lululemon and shape mag are not knocking down my door to get me modeling their goods. so attractive. that beauty of a mug. 
Here’s the workout from today, thanks to pic stitch. 
I try to pick a few exercises and go through a circuit of them 3 or 4 times. that usually gets a little muddled, extras get thrown in and some get taken out and there usually is no real order due to kidling interruptions and driveway racing breaks. I do my best. 
there’s that face again.
I don’t know what this one is called, but I love it. It’s this dynamic stretching/strengthening. I like using words like dynamic stretching.  I did pick up some info from when I started studying to get certified as a personal trainer.  which is back on the short list of things to happen very soon.  using big training words makes me feel like the personal trainer I aspire to be. that, and a certified running coach. BIG life goals.  gonna make it happen. back to the workout – I like this because I have a finicky IT band and I think it helps strengthen those muscles.  my legs like to alternate which IT band will flare up in each marathon I run. fun. then I just hold the weights at 90degree angle in a static position to work the arms a bit.  whoa. bustin’ out all the terms I’m not qualified to use.  swing your leg out to the side and cross in front of other leg, for prestated time, then switch sides. 
Next. 
Another beauty of a face. don’t know what these are either, but it’s a static squat tricep press, which means you stay in squat for the duration, with a straight arm tricep push back. pretty basic.  keep your arms straight and push them back. 
Next. 
Pushups. never underestimate the basic exercises. pushups with a twist. work the back. and then downward dog pushups.  And curtsy lunges with an overhead shoulder press.  fun. 
1.  Pushup on weights.  pull weight back when you straighten arms out of pushup position for back work.  And a lot of other muscles. Alternate sides for each rep.  
2.  Curtsy lunge. just what it says. lunge into a curtsy position. shoulder press when you move into lunge, and arms go back into static bicep curl when you come out of lunge. I know, it doesn’t really make sense to me either when I write it out, but it works. 
3.  Downward dog position, and push up. Awesome. courtesy of JM and a plethora of other workout DVDs. 
Next. 
Little bit ‘o abs. 
 V-sit abs, extend arms and legs out at the same time. return to V sit. get a little arm work in there. 
voila. I’m done.  Please note – I am not certified in anything other than talking about what works for me. the preceding exercises work for me. proceed with caution if you choose to follow. don’t do anything you probably shouldn’t be doing. 
onto dinner. which looked suspiciously like last nights dinner. with organic chicken sausage instead of chicken.
I’m lacking originality lately. and it doesn’t bother me. there is food. Its fairly healthy.  no one is starving. I did get creative and added honey mustard to my little bean salad. so much better.
This night has been deemed a blog free, computer free  night of movie watching with the hubs. signing off until Monday. 
What’s on tap for the weekend??  Races??

Ps – I ran the race in my Mizuno mushas. Love them more with every little race. just thought I’d share. sneakers are an important part of running. probably the most important. and mr. Garmin.  can’t forget about him.  don’t want it to get pissy and shut down on me again. but sneaks come first. make sure they are good ones.

Pps – if you are on instagram and want to follow me, I’m Lcat19. try that. it should be me. 

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Humid, Hot, Hilly, Happy – 4 on the 4th

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Hello my midweek holiday celebrating friends!  That was a tough one for me. my brain could not understand that it was Wednesday and not Saturday.  and that everyone was off from work. very difficult. we pulled through. the Wednesday wannabe Saturday was exacerbated by the fact that I ran a race. because races are always on the weekend. but this was a Wednesday. a Wednesday race was a first for me. what was also a first was running a 4 mile race. but now we are getting ahead of ourselves. let’s backtrack and talk about some workouts leading up to and through today. that’s a lot of running, so I’ll try to keep it brief. which shouldn’t be a problem because I quite honestly can’t remember much past yesterday anyway.
Workouts

Tuesday – 6.25 miles easy. truly, it was easy. I kept it just under 8 minute miles.  because I was running a race the next day. and because it was getting late in the day and it was really hot. my legs wanted to go more like 7:20-7:30ish pace, but we persevered and kept 8 near and dear.  trying to conserve as much energy as possible.
Wednesday – 1 mile w/u plus 4 mile race plus 6 mile recovery run = 11 miles for the day. 
I ran with my watch for the 6 mile recovery, but didn’t look at the pace, just ran comfortable and it was right around 7:45. good.
Today – 6 miles really easy. 8:20 pace easy plus 3 treadmill miles for 9 total in 73 minutes. My legs were really tired from yesterday. I put very little effort into this run and just let it be what it was. It was very pleasant, but also SUPER humid and hot at 5:30am when I left.  I needed to get about 10 miles.  instead of getting up when my alarm went off, I chose to lay in bed and not sleep but think about how much of a bad mood I would be in if I didn’t get my bum out of bed. It took about 10 minutes for me to firmly decide that a foul mooded mama was not in the best interest of anyone today and it was now or never.  at which point I only had time for 6 miles before I had to be back for the hubs to hit the gym. hence, the undesirable little 3 mile stint on the home mill.  It had to be done. I’ve got to sneak those miles in somewhere.  It’s not easy to get 50plus miles in a week.  for me. I feel like I’ve been running a TON and I just hit 36. not complaining. just think I should be able to add some honorary miles for feeling like I’ve been running more.
RACE


My crew. love them to death. 
This was a last minute race. my kind of race. I was told it was hilly. I already knew it would be hot and suffocatinlgy humid. none of those H’s failed to represent. although, I feel the hills were a little misrepresented. agreed, this was a very hilly 4 miler –  but we were not climbing everest. some expreienced looking runner tells me this is the hilliest race you’ll run and I think, good lord what have I gotten myself into. he obviously didn’t run the colchester half. that was hills. these were significant rollers, the whole time.   and one or two real hills.  enough to make it very challenging. but not killer.
Before we get into the race, let’s take a look at what happens behind the scenes for the lucky spouse that doesn’t get to race…hanging out with 3 little cherubs with sassy attitudes in hot temps…
no explanation


that didn’t happen for very long. he doesn’t like containment. 

little knuckleheads. 

post race crazies. heat was getting to them. and possibly the sugar from the free soda. that we let them have. 

GOALS FOR THE RACE
# 1Goal was to RUN MY BEST RUN

I would have been ecstatic with a 6:15 pace. I had no idea what that equated to for finish time, and I have no idea where that number came from. completely arbitrary. and very aggressive. I thought. for a hilly run. on a hot day. with high humidity. 

Aggressive pace or not, I knew I would have to hold back for the first couple miles because I always go out way too fast. and was capable of doing a 5:40s first mile and a sub 6 second mile then crashing. I didn’t want to crash. I wanted to run my BEST run that I had in me that day. and that was a smart run. and a run that was going to be good practice in mental strength. I truly wasn’t concerned with the outcome. I just wanted to run well, and strong. 

I was dripping sweat at the start. It was about 80 degrees and 80% humidity.  I did a 1 mile warmup. and waited about 10 minutes for the start. I LOVE seeing all the different people toeing the start line. 8 year old boy kept shoving me out of the way and two men in their 70’s were chatting up a storm next to me. behind me were a group of goofball high schoolers that would run sub 25 with ease. 

Horn blows.  Runners start cruising. 

holding back. staying in the low 6’s. I kept seeing 6:06, 6:04…slow it down a tad

I was in the front. with a pack of guys. no idea who was behind me. 

I LOVE these short, fast races. so hard from the start. so beneficial to the grand scheme of distance running. so mental. 

Miles 1 and 2, I felt like I was on cruise control. very comfortable in that pace. 

6:19, 6:12

 Hills started within the first 1/4 mile.  I didn’t let the hills psyche me out. I took them head on. 

Mile 3 was equally strong.  I felt good that I hadn’t wasted all of my energy in the first two.  but I almost blew it on this one. at the end of mile 3, you come back near the finish and EVERYONE is cheering. There were a lot of people. something about a lot of people cheering in a small race seems to give the runner some sort of magic ability to grow wings and just soar. effortless. I think I even saw fairy dust. maybe a unicorn.

5:54

5:54 is never effortless. for this girl. people are gone just as fast as they appear. crowds die and mile 3 is over. and you find yourself smack at the bottom of a hill after running a 5:54 mile. not cool. my legs felt like lead. I saw 6:40 on my watch and for a split second thought I blew my run. a split second later I got back in it and didnt care what my watch said. I was running. and I was going to bust out whatever I had left. pants peeing, dead leg running, gut it out pace.  one mile.  and more rollers.  I tried to start picking off the guys, which is tough when they are all running sub 6 minute miles. I didn’t know who was right behind me. and at this point, I didn’t want some girl taking my first place when I had worked for this position. 

6:25

Before I knew it, the finish was ahead and I could see 24:42 on the clock. I had no idea what my time was until that point, and I sprinted to get in under 25. done. 

24:59

1st female

17th overall out of 730 racing peeps

6:15 average pace

2nd girl was just over 2 minutes behind me. glad she wasn’t nipping at my heals.

I ran my run. I couldn’t have done it better. Happy I won, but happier I ran smart and strong. in heat, humidity and hills.


These short runs are purely mental for me. right now. the pace is what it is and I push myself, but i want to feel strong and present and in control when I run.  you start out hard and finish hard. and strong. physically and mentally.  I lost my mental edge a bit these past few months. I’m going to get it back doing races like this. 

Lululemon speed skirt and cool racerback top. that speed skirt is my favorite skirt. they don’t carry it now. but you could probably find it for twice as much on eBay. 

and that’s my last minute race. onto the next one.
By the time we got home, I put Luke down for a nap and scootched out the door to finish up my miles for the day. before it got too hot. it was already in the 90’s. I really do love running in the heat. that is why I love fall marathons. you have a full summer of hot running and training and then ease into some nice fall weather. if all goes according to plan.
but the heat takes everything out of you. my body wanted to be doing this…
seriously. give me a binky and a bath and let me chill out on a giant stuffed animal.  wrapped in a towel. rough life. 
not moving a muscle.  at all.  But my kids wanted to be doing this…


running around like maniacs, slip and sliding all over the yard. they win. 
moving. a lot. and it was the 4th of July.  meaning we had a long day and a later night ahead of us. and we would be bad parents if we made the kids leave the partay that night before te fireworks.  we played. and played some more and hung out with friends and watched some fireworks. perfect ending to a hot, hectic, hilly, fantastic day. 
and I pay for the late night and early morning, today.
they chose to ambush me at the grocery store. 3 on 1. no fair. two of my three decided to have a little soliloquy of screaming throughout. delightful experience.  we quickly moved our way through the store, as to ensure that I did not choke my kids out in the cereal aisle. surprisingly, I remained calm despite the ear piercing notes coming from their sweet little mouths. oh, stare all you want. I really don’t mind. I ran this morning. and I might have perused lululemon this afternoon.  always a mood lifter.  especially with all of their fantastically bright and exciting new colors. nothing can shake me. I can’t hear you, little screamers. but it was slightly exhausting.
somehow I managed to come home with something for dinner. Go me. randomly throwing items in a cart works. we had chicken and a nice little tomato/white bean/scallion salad. yum.
tomorrow will be a different story. I’m pretty confident we will be back at the grocery store. hopefully fully rested and with our happy pants on.
How was everyone’s 4th?? 

Who got some running in?  Racing?  

How do you stay sharp in a race or a long run?  Mantras?  Mantras really work for me. love ’em.




God’s gift to Running

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Workouts 

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. 
 
Sweaty 
 
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
Oregano
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?