What’s Next?

I finished my first half marathon. So what’s next?

A half marathon every month? A full?

Nope.

Well, maybe a full down the road – eventually. I think I need a few more half marathons under my belt first! I do want to keep running races, but it’s also nice to have a little break.

It seems like going with the flow and doing whatever exercise I feel like doing that day/week might work better for me. I always stress about getting the exact workout in that my current training plan calls for, which kind of defeats the purpose of using exercise as a healthy outlet.

Since my cross-training wasn’t so stellar during my training for the Shamrock Half (how do you guys have time for cross-training AND get all of your runs done?!) I’m going focus on a variety of workouts for a little while.

I can’t deal with going straight into another intense training cycle right now.

Instead, I’m going to take fun classes at the gym that I’ve been wanting to take, like Yoga Anti-gravity Wings.

I’m not sure my body bends that way, but we’ll see!

With glorious spring weather around the corner, I’m going to hop on my new bike and be one of the annoying bikers on the trail near Tuna’s house.

newbike

My fam is thinking that I would be good at triathlons, though I’m not sure I want to get into them yet. They’re expensive and I know approximately zilch about them. However, I could probably be convinced to do one…maybe during the summer. [Vicki?]

For now, I’m signed up for a 10K in May [with Mal, Rose, Stephy, and others – yay!] 

We’ll be doing the Capitol Hill Classic, which I am excited for. A 10K seems like the perfect distance to run next.

I think this whole athletic event/race thing has officially turned into a hobby.

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A Visit from Vicki

I’m finally getting around to recapping last weekend and it’s already almost time for another! Whoops. (But TGIAF [thank gawd it’s almost Friday]).

This past weekend was full of fun activities thanks to a visit from my friend Vicki who came up from Charlottesville!

Since it was raining on Saturday morning, we decided do some yoga before our long run. I am so lucky that I actually still have friends when I constantly make them take awkward photos of me.

yoga2

I was excited to run with Vic because she is a super runner (she’s done two Tough Mudders and two marathons – cray) and I knew she would push the pace a little bit.

trailrunwithvicki

Success! The run flew by since we were chattin’ away.

The rest of the weekend consisted of multiple restaurant trips where we spent too much moolah and shoveled our faces with delish eats.

On Sunday afternoon we went to Chinatown before Vicki had to catch her train back home.

2013-02-24 16.06.42

We went to Matchbox, which we both love. Matchbox has pretty big portions and not-too-painful prices.

Vicki was craving a burger all weekend and was determined to get it.

I got an awesome Bloody Mary. I actually tried a Bloody Mary for the first time with Vicki a few years ago at a brunch in Georgetown.

2013-02-24 15.57.28

bloodymary3

Vicki got her burger! Aren’t these the coolest onion rings you’ve ever seen? I stole one and devoured it.

vicki'sburger

New food alert: the onion rings were sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and I liked it! Tuna will be thrilled (I always veto Parmesan on anything).

I ordered the chopped salad. When I ordered, I made sure to ask our server if it came with lettuce. It didn’t specify, so I was confused. I didn’t know if it’s base was made of the diced tomato.

His response: “Obviously.”

Oh.

choppedsalad

Mmmm. I’m going to have to try to re-create this one at home.

What did you do last weekend? Any plans for this weekend?

Are you a difficult order-er at restaurants? I always am. Sometimes it gets me into trouble with the people I’m with! 🙂 

Hashtag…overshare.

Since this week is busy (a cappella Tuesday, work late Wednesday, book club Thursday) I haven’t gotten to the gym as much as I would have liked.

After working late last night though, I wanted to do some kind of exercise. I am now a little scary to be around when I don’t have my endorphin fix, I think.

I wasn’t feeling running in my nasty one-treadmilled apartment gym, so I settled for some yoga. When I say I’m doing yoga, it most likely means I am doing:

I started doing the Sunrise episode of this DVD in the Fall when it was on my Comcast On Demand. I loved Sarah Ivanhoe’s calm voice telling me “Anddd if youuu topple outt of ittt….just be gladdd you are doing it at allll.”

Ahhhh. Sarah Ivanhoe, please make a goodnight/lullaby talk tape. I’ll spearhead that endeavor for you, if you’d like.

Anyway, it was especially nice to unwind to the Sunset episode at night after a long day of work. Yes, I turn off the lights and light vanilla and lavender scented candles and sometimes do yoga in my underwear. Hashtag…overshare.

I try to do yoga about once a week,  and I have gotten so much more flexible from doing it in the past few months. But since I haven’t done yoga lately, my joints were a little tighter than usual.

After I got stretchified, I promptly did not make my sleep challenge. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow night.

******

I lucked out for lunches this week – we had extra sandwiches from Brown Bag available at work both yesterday and today.

My delectable concoction consisted of turkey on multigrain bread with cheddar cheese, tomatoes, red onions, and pickles.

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I think the best part of having lunch provided at work is that I didn’t have to make my bag lunch last night, and I won’t have to tonight. Sine I made my Wednesday lunch on Tuesday night and haven’t eaten it yet, I get to use it for tomorrow’s lunch.

Yessssss.

For some reason, I loathe making my lunch/overnight oats the night before work. I’m too lazy to make it right when I get home from work, so I make it right before I go to bed. But then the whole night I feel like I have some annoying chore hanging over my head.

*****

I’m bringing organic sweet potato chips to my once-a-month girls’ book club tonight. I’m excited to nosh on yummy snacks all evening and catch up on some girly gossip. I’ll let you know what book we choose for next month!

Overdose

Since my hip felt better after a late night yoga sesh on Tuesday night, I worked all day Wednesday on mentally preparing myself for my longest ever long run.

I fueled with some healthy eats for lunch that were surprisingly filling.

And had a late afternoon snack full of caffeine and fiber that I later regretted. I’m thinking I should lay off the fiber before long runs in the future. ‘Nough said.

Afternoon snack.

My goal for the night was a 7 miler – which was unknown territory. Unknown territory is usually rather nerve racking.

Wish me luck, I may never return.

My thoughts on any and every run always proceed in the following fashion:

0.00 – 1.00 Miles: “Ok, I’m kind of tired. I would rather be on the couch.”
1.00 – 3.00 Miles: “This is awesome! Amazing! I love running! I am so fit.”
3.00 – 4.00 Miles: “Is it time to stop yet? Maybe I should shorten my mileage.”
4:00 – 5.00 Miles: “I hate my life. No, I can do this. Ahhh! Pain!!! No, you can do this.”
5:00+ Miles: “Dying. I am officially dying. I hope I don’t puke or faint.”

Guess when my headphones stopped working? Uh huh, that’s right, mile 4.35. FML.

Seriously, running gods? Are you trying to jinx me? And on National Running Day, too.

Well they didn’t actually stop working, the volume just cut down really low and I couldn’t turn it back up. BTDubs, my biggest pet peeve is music playing juuuust low enough that I can kind of hear it but can’t hear it. I think my headphones secretly knew that. What an ornery old b*tch. (Umm, the headphones, not me. Duh.)

Luckily, I brought my iPhone to the treadmill with me, so I yanked my sweaty headphones out of my iPod shuffle and shoved ’em into my iPhone. No luck. Bruno Mars was still very softly crooning in my ear rather than shouting and me through dank beats to keep on going.

That was confirmation that the headphones were the malfunctioning piece of equipment. I think I sweated them out. Like, sweated so much on them (most likely build up from the past 5 sweaty months) that they broke.

I had no other choice but to rip them out of my ears and practice my mad pouting skills.

Recap: I was forced to do my longest run ever while running without headphones for the first time.

Before running today I couldn’t fathom those cray cray girls that don’t need any kind of musical aid to finish a run.

After running today, I can’t imagine ever running without musical aid again.

Running without music was so weird. I can see how people could do it with the adrenaline of a race, or maybe if you’re so in shape that you don’t need the motivation of sound to keep you going. Or maybe it’s just the musician in me that makes music a current necessity for me. Maybe I’ll experiment with running without music in the future, but for now, I need my iPod. Kthanks.

Moral of the rant: I completed my 7 miles, even with a big (for me) handicap thrown my way at the hardest part of the run.

I’m patting myself on the back right now, if you can’t tell.

After stretching for a nice 15 minutes, I headed next door to Rodman’s to grab a $0.99 piece of heaven.

Refuel success.

I continued my dramatic smart recovery with some frozen H20 love.

Better safe than sorry.

I went to bed freezing even though I was snuggled in my over-sized wool sweater.

But I keep waking up, all night long, tossing and turning in my sweat soaked sheets. (TMI?)

Huh? I felt like I had a fever or something! I woke up feeling so sticky and hot.

I hoped I didn’t push myself to hard. Am I dying? Am I not ready for longer mileage (for me!!!) like I thought I was? Maybe I’m not built to be a distance runner if my body is rebelling like this.

http://www.livestrong.com/article/397180-night-sweats-after-exercising/ 

Oh. It’s normal.

I know this girl says all sweat is good sweat, but I already completed my daily sweat! Sweat overdose.  I guess I got a BOGO?

I hope I don’t have to wash my sheets and duvet after every long run. Hopefully my body will adjust.

*****

However, I did enjoy the fact that when I weighed myself this morning, I met my 20 lb weight loss mark after clean eating and running for the past 5 months!

Maybe that extra sweat wasn’t so bad after all.

I took a rest day today, complete with a glass of Shiraz and some dark chocolate.

Next up: 3.1 mile run tomorrow.

8 days until my first race!!!!!

Do you ever run without music? Teach me your ways.

Do you ever get night sweats after long runs?

Dr. Scholl’s, Pita, and Peeta

I didn’t end up making it to Extreme Ride tonight because I had to stop at CVS on the way and buy these:

My left foot is starting to give me a little bit of trouble. Keep in mind that I am known to be a slight hypochondriac slash drama queen though, so don’t take my complaining too seriously.

I broke my left foot in October 2009 and again in April 2010. The first breakage was at work (my job for some extra cash in college was lifeguarding part-time). We were moving a bunch of equipment at the end of a shift and a huge piece of equipment fell and crushed my foot. Long story short, it took a loooong time for my foot to recover from that one.

As soon as it did heal, I took a bad drunken tumble and re-broke the same foot in the same place. I must have had some baaaad karma goin’ on or something.

Since then, I haven’t had too many issues with my foot, except that I have a much harder time doing yoga balancing poses on my left leg.

I heart my yoga mat.

But as I’ve started running longer distances and running more often than usual, the inner edge of my arch is struggling. I bought new running shoes about eight months ago-ish, and can’t really afford a new pair for a few more months (I already have been doing some Summer shopping. Whoooopsie.) Plus, I don’t even know if I have the wrong shoes for my feet, or if my foot is the problem. I figured I would try a cheap solution for kicks.

Once I put them in my sneakers they felt kind of funny at first – but as soon as I took a running stride on the treadmill, I knew I was in love. They felt awesome – it seemed as if I was bouncing along in moon boots. Remember those? From Nickelodeon?

Anyway, they turned out to be a great buy. Running felt great, and my arch was only a tiny bit sore after running. It’s a good quick fix for sure, but I will have to eventually figure out a better long term solution, since ideally, I don’t want my arch to ever be sore. Could be my shoes, could be my stride.

I ran my 5 miles, just like I promised! It was a treadmill run – the miles were a bit rough, but hey, I got them done. Another thing I need to improve on is my breathing technique. Maybe I concentrate too much on my breathing, and that’s why it feels weird, but man, was I suckin’ in air. I was definitely gasping for breath, which is probably not the best way to breathe.

At least I wasn’t making little grunting noises every ten seconds like the Mets fan running next to me. If I can hear you over my cranked up music, you’re too loud. Rude.

I ended the evening with a lovely turkey pita at Tuna’s. He even put mine together for me!

Not the prettiest picture in the world, but it sure tasted good.

CNG’s Turkey Pita

Ingredients:

Whole wheat pita
Turkey slices
Spinach
Tomato
Onion
Shredded Cheese
Garlic Hummus
Caesar Lite Dressing

And in honor of my pita, I will leave you with Peeta.

Oh heyyyyyy, Peeta. (source)