I did it!

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TA DA! ūüôā me and my sweet mama

My time was 2:42. So just under a 13:00/mile pace. I was thrilled with that! There were a lot of hills & my quads were shot afterwards.

I have my next goal set. The plan is to do interval workouts when I run. I also will be tracking my weight more consistently. The goal is to lose 6.5 lbs in the month of September.

It was an emotional week for me. It was challenging. There was nothing better than to see my brother & sweet husband at the finish line cheering & clapping for me. I may or may not be shedding a tear thinking about it. (which is why this entry may not be as spunky as usual.)

I’m so grateful for my companionship with Landon. I’m grateful for challenges because they evoke more compassion for myself & others than I ever anticipated. I’m not afraid to take on more challenges. I know that I can do whatever I want to do. & I’m especially¬†encouraged & inspired¬†to have Landon with me.

‚̧ ‚̧ be blessed ‚̧ ‚̧

 

Run with your BUTT.

As you may know, I’ve been training for a half marathon. The final week has arrived & the race is on Saturday! I haven’t done a half marathon¬†in 3 years. I was nervous to attempt this again. My first race was the Seaside School Half Marathon in FL. (I lived in paradise.)

This time around, I’ve been training consistently by using Hal Higdon’s Novice 1 training program. (because I’m a NEWB.) It’s been an excellent schedule for me. I’ve usually switched Friday, Saturday, & Sunday around, but overall, I’ve stuck with it. I really like his explanations for what each day & work out should be like, but I still feel like I’ve had the freedom to choose exactly¬†what I’d like to do. I’ve lost 14.2 pounds total so far, & I feel great & definitely feel more confident. (it’s also a lot¬†easier to run with less weight to carry!)

I made it a point that weight loss wasn’t necessarily my goal as I began training. I told myself, first & foremost, I am training for this so that I will be capable of running 13.2 miles without stopping. (because that’s totally badass) I felt by keeping that goal in mind, it’d be easier for me to KEEP GOING, & not get frustrated if my body didn’t look exactly what I dreamt of, or if the scale didn’t reflect exactly how I thought it should. So long as I stuck to the schedule as best I could, I was doing what was necessary for me to achieve this goal-& my body would do the rest.

This past Saturday I made it a goal to run 11 miles (instead of the suggested 10 miles on the schedule.) I knew that if I could steadily run 11 miles, I’d have no problem adding an additional 2 miles. (ps it’s super awesome how measly 2 miles becomes) My pace, you ask? 12:25/mile. (Olympics, here I come!)¬†which was more than 30 seconds/mile FASTER than last week, when I ran 9!

I was quite happy with¬†my time.¬†I am still learning how to control my speed & how to stay steady.¬†I’m learning how fast I can/should go when I’m tackling these longer distances.¬†I am learning how to propel myself without additional strain….which brings me to today’s topic: RUNNING WITH YOUR BUTT.

It’s a little embarrassing to say, but “run with your butt” was my mantra as I was running my 11 miles on Saturday. Seriously! 970911_10151513333596741_1067184518_n

see? I’m not a liar. ūüėČ

Allow me to explain…

I used to have a serious burning & painful achilles tendon whenever I’d run. It wasn’t encouraging & just made me frustrated to keep going¬†or make new fitness goals.¬†I tore both my Achilles tendons at the ripe old age of 10. (I was a pretty badass jump-roper & gymnast) As I’ve strengthened it by taking baby steps, getting better shoes, exercising, stretching, icing, etc, etc…I’ve noticed that small posture changes & engaging a specific muscle group, can significantly reduce pain & strain!

So yes, I mindfully & purposely engaged my BUTT muscles while running. It’s a little difficult to explain, & I’m not going to show you my butt as a visual,¬†so I guess I have no choice but to keep talking…I’ve learned to isolate specific muscle groups through Pure Barre.¬†If you’re familiar with the technique, this will make a little more sense to you. As I was running, I could hear my quads & knees & achilles¬†complaining that they were stressed & that I was demanding too much of them. So I called upon my butt muscles to take the work load off. I had to concentrate & relax my knees & quads & Achilles more, & use or¬†engage my butt to work harder. So, my legs were moving forward because I was using my butt muscles to push me, rather than springing up off the ground with my Achilles, & stressing my knees & quads out as I hit the pavement. By engaging my butt, I was able to almost¬†glide & keep a steady pace. It was awesome. It won’t make as much sense reading about it, as it does when you actually try it.

SO: When you’re running,¬†try & distribute your weight to a specific area of your body. Adjust your shoulders a little more, push them back & keep your head looking UP-Whatever you need to do to KEEP GOING. Especially when you’re tackling long distances! You don’t need to stay in the exact¬†posture for the entire duration of your run. Listen to your body so that you can adjust accordingly!

 

 

 

How to GO WORK OUT when you REALLY don’t want to…

Think about WHY¬†you don’t want to exercise…dwell on the past &¬†think about how you’d be crushing your hopes & dreams of a bright future & hot bod, if you don’t do it.

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(my visual demonstration)

JOKE. Don’t do any of that.

In all seriousness, that’s what happens to me sometimes. And I have a hunch that I’m not the only one. I¬†start to feel¬†depressed, &¬†beat myself up, wondering¬†WHY!¬†

“WHY OH WHY¬†can’t I pep talk myself into this?! why¬†should I even need a pep talkl!? If I’m not motivated to go do my work out, I’m clearly not cut out to achieve my goals…I MIGHT AS WELL, just eat some cake & SURRENDER to that which is¬†my fate!” (see below)

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First of all, EVERYONE has “off” days.¬† EVERYONE doubts themselves occasionally.

& EVERYONE likes LOVES cake.

It can be really tricky to overcome the emotions that are holding you back. Recognize that the following emotions are nothing but a NUISANCE. *(emotions are valid & should be recognized…but I’m speaking in terms of EXERCISE & basic fitness goals.)

  1. fear-it will NEVER allow you to live in the present moment, which you NEED to do in order to FOCUS.¬†I think fear strikes¬†when we dwell too heavily on the future. “what if this…or what if that…” OR when we live in the past & anticipate history repeating itself.
  2. shame-It can be VERY difficult to TAKE ACTION & get what needs to be done, when we’re ashamed of ourselves. It’s very difficult to take care of a person you’re ashamed of. “why should I care if it’s good for me? I’m not impressed¬†with myself anyway. Who am I to deserve the best?”
  3. guilt- Now this one, I don’t think has ever served anyone well.¬†Especially if you’re feeling guilty for being tired, more hungry than usual, or that you just ate 3 candy bars, 1 large piece of chocolate cake that your awesome husband made, & those Spiracha Lays Potato chips….. wait, what?…Guilt requires you to HOLD ON to the past.

Let it go. It’s irrelevant to this NEW, UNTAINTED moment that you live in!

In my opinion.

Put all your lil nuisance emotions in a box. Throw them away. & move along.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a workout I need to do, that I didn’t really feel like doing when I woke up….I’m only 10 days away from my 1/2 marathon & looking like Alana Blanchard.

My favorite cardio workout…

Today’s been a day for recovery…& a generous amount of chocolate.¬† (a piece of chocolate cake & two handfuls of chocolate chips…big handfuls.) Seriously, I feel a little bit guilty about it. But now that I’ve told you, I’m over it. Just had to get that off my chest.

I ran 9 miles on Saturday at a slow, but steady pace of….13:00/mile. Not exactly¬†Olympian status yet, but I’ll get there. I felt good & was almost going to do 10 miles…but then I decided¬†I was OK to not go the extra mile…..literally. ha!

This week my dear husband and I have been taking advantage of our sauna!

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Yes, that is a Papaya¬†card that I framed! “dream, vision, imagine, create, expand, transform…follow your bliss”

I LOVE¬†the dry¬†sauna because it’s the easiest, lowest possible impact cardio workout EVER! You can relax & stretch your muscles deeper, & more effectively in the sauna! We typically put it at 170 degrees, & stay in¬†20-30 minutes max. I like to do 20 minutes. After 10 minutes, as I’m dramatically gasping for air & dripping with sweat, I drink a big glass of ice water & go back in for my remaining 10 min.

I figure that I might as well work my heart & get my blood pumping, while sitting on my butt doing nothing, if I can.

And I can. So I do.

If you don’t have your own dry sauna, invest! Period.

Just kidding. We just happened to find an awesome basement apartment that just happened to have a sauna. (we are lucky ducks…but I should have just let you think we were bawlas.)

Most gyms have a dry sauna or a steam room! Take advantage of the benefits! Seriously, nothing is more therapeutic than a good sweat session! And you might as well burn some extra calories by doing NOTHING.

And what are the benefits, you ask?

Not only are you burning calories & increasing your blood circulation-your skin will thank you.¬†Sweating encourages our¬†skin to breathe!¬†I notice my skin is MUCH¬†less congested & looks more lively¬†when I’m sweating more often. I also think that it helps me recover from strenuous workouts¬†quicker. Increased circulation=healing. Healing=happy.

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p.s. here’s a picture of us. Because I know you wanted to see him! He¬†just loves when I face hug him.