Sunday, June 30, 2013

A week off

My good friend asked me the other day what I thought of Facebook since joining a couple months ago. I told her it felt like shorthand blogging to me.

So tonight I posted the exact same picture i'm putting in this post, sorry for the duplicates to friends of both chattynatty and my Facebook page.

However, chattynatty blog allows me to say more/elaborate. I've been dreading the bugs this summer. Specifically the gnats have been uber pestering. Tonight though no gnats, light breeze, no annoying neighbor girls out on their trampoline- nope just me, my glass of my favorite vino and a good book- I'll tell you about it next month because unless I read over 100 pages tonight it won't get finished to be included in the June reads list.

Anyways, back to the title of this post... I've had a week off from running or any other scheduled working out. It has been just Ok. I know I needed this week off physically. I was sore throughout the week in my legs and back. I don't think mentally it was great. I was cranky, irritable and just blah!

I can't put my finger on it- what the exact cause of my blahness was. Starting tomorrow I'm back in the saddle, no pun intended because I start my tri training tomorrow- bike one day a week, run three days a week and swim one day a week. If i am really good I will throw in a day of strength/core exercises- I know, I know I always say this, but a girl can dream can't she :).

June has flown by and now July is upon us and I get to figure out how to cram all the summer "to do's" in. Funny sometimes I forget summer is suppose to be relaxing.

Onward to July...

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Chicago Women's 1/2 marathon

So I wrote a few weeks back that if I didn't make my goal of PR (personal best) for this 1/2 marathon I could look back and realize I hadn't followed the training plan to a "t" and I also hadn't done some other possible lifestyle adjustments that may or may not aid in my running (in no particular order of importance- didn't give up sweets, pop, or alcohol). 

I think that post was foreshadowing of what was to come.  My run Sunday morning wasn't my best or close to it.  I ran the 13.1 miles in 2:06:18.  It was a different race, a little atypical for me, from the standpoint of hype and emotional connectedness to the race.  I mean that within the first mile or two I was worried I was going to "bonk" (mentally not be able to physically power through the 13.1 miles).  I just wasn't feeling my music, or the pace, even though I was running at a fast clip at the beginning- looked at my Nike GPS watch at one point and was doing 8 min miles.  I powered through the first three miles and felt really pretty good after finding my pace and my music.  I thought around mile 5- I'm definitely going to PR.  How the thoughts and ability can change.  I was at the 8 mile turn around and started to feel heat exhaustion.  I was sweating despite the cloud cover at mile 2- dripping from my forehead under my brimmed hat.  So by mile 8 not only was I totally sweaty, but I smelled ripe.  Then I saw someone going down.  These girls were trying to help their friend walk and I started yelling "Lie her down, Get her down".  They did and about 0.5 miles later there was a young lady lying on the side of the path, pretty out of it again with friends at her side trying to have a onlooker call someone for help/transport.  So besides being totally "HOT" I also let those two pictures get into my head and I started thinking what if I am not really "bonking", what if my symptoms and desire to walk so darn bad are true needs, not just mental.  I decided that if my heat exhaustion continued and any dizziness occurred I'd stop running.  I did walk through the water stations and refueled with Gatorade and then water each time, while also dowsing myself with cups of water and running on.  I finished strong like I always seem to do coming down the straight away.  However, it just wasn't my day.  I was emotionally spent more so than physically. 

I haven't had this happen ever, but I started to get teared up with frustration, disappointment, and self doubt after crossing the finish line.  Why didn't I train smarter, why can't I run faster?  The two biggest questions I asked myself throughout that day following the race. 

Me following the race- bomb pop in hand with the beautiful Chi-town sky line behind me.
Husband, aka coach, reminded me that I ran well, that I always make comments like this after a race, and that I see the negative not the positive.  He was right, but I just couldn't let it go.  If I wanted to improve so badly why didn't I ever go the whole 9 yards and train to my fullest along with proper nutrition, etc.  If I would give it my all then I could never doubt my training or my work ethic- I would know I had done my best.

So I am trying to figure out what that "best" is and what I will be satisfied with  in knowing with upcoming races/goals I've given my all.  I've taken the week off.  Next week I start on my tri-training schedule for the tri at the beginning of August.  Then I will have my last race of the year at the end of October- another 1/2.  My plan is to train for the tri and then following that get back on the training schedule for the 1/2. 

So although disappointed in my run/time on Sunday I move forward with motivation to do better and be healthier.  Now don't you worry I'm not going totally junk free- had fries tonight with my grilled chicken sandwich.  But I'm going to try better and live healthier in hopes in helping me be stronger and faster.

I pulled this quote out of the "mental pick me up" jar, my sister gave me for Christmas, today.  I thought this was a pretty telling sign and a kick in the rear to get refocused and move forward. 


Friday, June 21, 2013

Three movies in one week!

I'm finally getting my posts for this week done all in one morning :). 

As you now know husband and I were without kids this week.  For some reason I decided to take advantage of this week's "freeness" and watch some movies.  All are very different and really have nothing in common.  I thought I was going to get all this reading done this week, but I decided to spend time with husband and enjoy some cinema.  So here in no particular order is a recap of the movies I watched and my reviews. 
I read this book several years ago and then read the rest of the series.  My favorite book was probably this first one.  I had heard that the Swedish movie version was very graphic and the American version was more tame.  I don't think I'd call it tame, but it was pretty true to the book.  I really like Daniel Craig.  He's my kind of leading man!  I got over the graphic scenes and really enjoyed the movie.
I then watched Australia.  This movie came out in 2008.  It wasn't exactly what I thought it was going to be because it was like a modern day musical.  Baz Luhrmann, who directed Moulin Rouge, also directed this one so the intertwining of musical songs into this WWII love story was interesting, but enjoyable.  I also was unaware of the discriminating that took place up until 1973 with aboriginal people.  If you enjoy historical fiction and music this one is for you.  Another good watch.

Last night I finished off my movie watching week by enjoying this hilarious parody of 80's Rock Bands and music.  Husband didn't like it- it was almost like a Rock Opera- singing from the get go and very little talking until the mid/end of the movie.  The characters were great and I was singing along with the 80's Rock songs by the end of the movie.  I'm definitely interested in getting this Soundtrack.  Awesome- total ChattyNatty- movie.  Watch it if you are a child of the 80's. 
That is it- Whew- lots of hours watching the "boob tube", but worth it with three good nights of movie watching.  Now back to the real world.  

A Week Sans Kids

That's what my sister in-law called it when I talked to her earlier this week and I thought it sounded like a perfect title for a blog post  So what did I do during this week without the kids...

I worked.
I watched three movies.
I read my book, but still am not done- struggling a little.
I ran.
I did gardening/yardwork.
I met my husband for dinner after work one night.
I missed my kids not horribly, but daily missed seeing their smiles and hearing their funny stories.

It was a good week. I of course didn't get as much done as I always have planned, but it was a relaxing week.  I rediscovered my love for watching movies and realize the reason I don't watch movies as much, normally, is because my life is busier and I'm more tired when being a "full on" mom so without the kids around this week it was easier to relax, and not be too tired to start a movie at 8pm knowing I only had me to worry about the next day.

I thought several times during the week- is this what life is going to be like when they are grown, old and out of the home?  It was refreshing to know that I didn't crumble and my husband and I found plenty to fill our days/nights, but there was this "silence".  Like anything in life experiencing this "silence" is a good reminder to me that the "noise" although busier, and makes me a more "tired" mom is really good and part of my life right now that I really enjoy. 

Who cares if I don't watch movies or TV that much any more when "full time" mom.  This time is only for awhile so I have been reminded to embrace the "noise" and look forward to being united tonight with two of my favorite people in this wonderful world we all live in. 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Relaxing Family Time

Our long weekend in Wisconsin is almost over. We are all lounging in the grandparents room while our room gets cleaned.

It is so nice to have time to just relax and enjoy the people you are with. Sometimes vacations can be filled with continuous planned day trips- leaving early/getting back to hotel late, running here/running there while trying to pack it all in. Meanwhile during the rushing and running crankiness ensues.

This trip has been so nice because we have all just done what we wanted when we wanted and no rushing occurred.

The other thing I really enjoyed is we spent a lot of time out doors- biking, running, walking in town, and along the beach. Sitting on the beach, despite the cooler temps, was nice too.

I didn't get my book finished yet, but some quality reading with my kids occurred and I visited a great "towny" bookstore and really nice public library.

So if you don't have one of these type of vacations on your "to do" list this summer I highly recommend you make an effort to make it happen.

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Thursday, June 6, 2013

Buck Up Little Camper!

I've had to have a little chat with myself this past week about how I need to Buck Up and "GET HER DONE"!

I was doing well a week up to the Ronald McDonald 1/2 marathon following the Another Mother Runner "own it" 1/2 marathon plan.  The week before the race I was suppose to run 13 miles and my "coach" reminded me that doing 13 miles the week before a 1/2 was probably not going to help me run the race well.  So I adjusted my training schedule.  Then the week after the race I was physically fatigued from pushing it on the hills and finishing strong at the 1/2.  So I adjusted that week's schedule.  I was suppose to run I think 10 miles the following weekend and instead I did- 6 miles and 3 miles.  The following week I was just still physically fatigued and letting a little mental fatigue in and so adjusted that week also and did 4.3, 4, 4.25 and 8.  My long run that week was suppose to be 13.  Then the following week I ran 6, 4, and 10- again my long run that week was suppose to be 15 (that's why they call it the "own it" plan, most race plans don't have you run longer than your race distance for the longest training run- but this one does and I unfortunately didn't get it done).  Then the last week in May was the most pitiful- I just was taken over by the mental fatigue monster- I ran 4.3, 2.62, 4, and 11.  The 2.62 mile run was a low point for me- I can't remember the last time I went out to run and couldn't at least do 3 miles. SO....

then I received a couple of wake up calls.  The first came when I was listening to a Podcast about running and the person writing in her question to the Another Mother Runner ladies asked: Can I adjust my speed schedule so that I'm still doing speed work, but not doing the same amount of intervals?  Basically she wanted to shorten up the workout and not do the length of speed work recommended.  The Another Mother Runners basically said "No"- if you want to "own it" you have to "do it".  I'm not paraphrasing perfectly, but that was the jest of it.  Then a day or two later I received a blog reminder that was titled "Do The Work" and had this lovely graphic...

It was my wake up call.  If I want to run a great race in Chicago on June 23 I have to "Do the Work".  So I have gotten back on track and made/pushed myself and already have logged 13 miles thus far.  I still have a 10 miler this weekend and then a cross train day on Sunday, but I feel like my mental fatigue monster has disappeared this week. 

So Why or Why do I share all these mundane details with you- well it holds me accountable and also admits that even if you have a training plan/schedule it is really up to you to be honest and uphold it.  If I don't race a great race on the 23rd I can look back at May and realize the long runs I didn't get done and the speed work/intervals I skipped out on due to physical/mental fatigue.  That said- I also think that I needed a little break and that is why I ran a 2.62 miler and didn't log all the long runs on the weekend.  It is a balancing game- staying sane and staying in training mode.  We'll see how this all pans out Sunday June 23rd.  Happy Running/Happy Living!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

May Reading & Running

May has seemed to fly by and wouldn't you know it it is June.

I've been delinquent with my writing and I've missed it. I will likely send a bunch of posts in a row once I can sit down and write and write and write- time has just been crunched of late.

So here's a quick recap of my running and reading for this past month.

Running- total miles 86. I have fallen off the "own it" Another Mother Runner 1/2 marathon plan. I was suppose to run back to back 13 milers and didn't because one of those 13 milers ended up being the Ronald Mc Donald 1/2 I did at the beginning of May. Then following the race I was physically worn out. I followed up with a 6,8,10 and 11 milers on the weekends following the 1/2. I was suppose to do higher long run miles on the weekend including 1 13 miler and 1 15 miler- but alas I just couldn't get it done. I'm ok with this but worried my physical fatigue is also heightened by mental fatigue and just that 1/2 assness I get mid training. So I'm going to plow through it, but if/when I don't PR at 1/2 at end of month i'll be kicking myself for slacking off and not pushing through my fatigue.

May Reading: I even slacked in the reading arena this month. Again I blame this on fatigue. Normally I have no problem staying up but instead have challenging time making myself go to bed in timely fashion. However this month I've had hard time keeping my eyes open once I get into bed. So here are my May reads...

A Fierce Radiance by Lauren Belfer
It was our book club read. Our 112 book in fact. It was historical fiction about penicillin production during World War II. I liked it but was a mix review by the Bookies.

A beautiful mystery by Louise Penny. The 7th in the Armand Gamache series. It was ok. I always like the mysteries best when they take place in Twin Pines and this one didn't so not my favorite of her's.

The chapter book I read with kids was The Doll People by Anne Martin. It was a good story and both my kids enjoyed it. I recommend it.

That's all I read and ran this month. I'll catch you up on the rest of the recent activities real soon.

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