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Archive for March, 2010

Warmest run of the year

So far!

Our training schedule called for another 4 miles today but I was feeling a little stiff and sore from the day before. But I still wanted to take advantage of the lovely weather, in which I wore shorts and a short-sleeved t-shirt. Man, it had been too long!

So, we just ran three miles.

  • Time: 29:40
  • Distance: 3 miles
  • Avg. pace: 9:53/mile

Part of the course we ran today will be in the 10-miler I’m running on Saturday. As we ran this part, I started to get a bit nervous that I am not quite ready for the race. At least not to run it all.

But I know I can run 6-7 miles, so perhaps I can walk/run or even walk the rest. Because honestly, finishing a 10-mile race, no matter how I do it, is quite an accomplishment. I need to take Kim’s advice and stop comparing to last year, the year before, etc.

Just have fun! That’s going to be my mantra this weekend.

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Back in the saddle

Today, I went on my first run in nearly a week!

I took it a little easy since it had been several days and I am coming off of an illness. I did pretty well, but toward the end my cough was bothering me and my left calf hurt.

  • Time: 44:11
  • Distance: 4.23 miles
  • Average Pace: 10:27/mile

After lots of water and stretching, I felt GREAT. Getting back to my regular exercise and a re-focused approach to eating has made this day absolutely amazing.

Why do people hate Mondays? Ha ha.

Our weather is about to turn gorgeous and warm…I can’t wait for more outdoor runs this week. Even today in the 50’s was pleasant. I’m also looking forward to my 10-mile race on Saturday, whether or not I’m prepared for it 😉

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Rest? What is that?

I don’t know if you know this about me, but I do not like “rest” days!

It’s not that I mind taking a day off from running by doing another activity or taking it easy with my workout from time to time. I just don’t like those days when I’m not supposed to (or can’t) do anything!

Unfortunately, now that I am sick, I must take complete rest days. On Tuesday, the first day I felt ill, I took a 45 minute walk. But ever since then I have not done anything but sit, lay down, drink lots of fluids and eat some nutrient dense food (and some not-so-nutrient-dense, ha ha).

With a 10 mile race coming up next Saturday, I will admit to being a little nervous but I can say with a sound mind that I have done the best I can with my training. Life happens, things come up, people get sick, we run out of time, etc.

I don’t care if I have to run-walk this race or if my time is slower this year. I’m not hoping to do anything but show up and have a good time!

I will start reporting my workouts again when they start happening again. I’m trying to take little walks here and there while I’m at work but nothing too strenuous. Thank you all for your feedback on my last post!

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Yesterday, I was not feeling 100%. I have a sore, irritated throat and I didn’t have as much energy as usual. I’m thinking since we went from 40 degrees on Monday to 65 on Tuesday, it’s my Springtime allergies flaring up.

But I decided a workout would (hopefully) make me feel better!

First, I ran 1 mile outside on the track in 9:43! I was going to do two miles but after the second lap, I could tell I was done.

But I managed to go inside and do some low intensity weight training.

  • Chest presses – 12.5# dumbbells, 2×15
  • Shoulder presses – 7.5# dumbbells, 2×15
  • Reverse flyes – 7.5# dumbbells, 2×15
  • Dead lifts – 12.5# dumbbells, 2×15
  • Bicep curls – 15# body bar, 1×15; 18 lb body bar, 1×15
  • Tricep presses (aka “skull crushers”) – 15# body bar, 1×15; 18 lb body bar, 1×15
  • Side bends – using 20# kettlebell, 2×25 each side
  • “Leg pull in” ab exercise – 2×15
  • Leg extension machine – 55#, 2×15
  • Leg curl machine – 55#, 2×15

I felt pretty good after this workout and for a while afterwards. But toward the end of the night, my throat got worse and today it’s showing in my voice. But I’m just going to treat the symptoms and monitor how I feel before I decide whether or not to run today.

Do you exercise when you are feeling under the weather?

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Running from the rain

After taking the last two days off to rest and recover from my trip to North Carolina, I was so glad to take off on a run this afternoon!

Speaking of being out of town, I have to give a huge thanks to the ladies who filled in for me while I was gone. I was so impressed with their guest posts that I want to go out of town again soon, ha ha. Thanks girls!

Back to today…it had been cool and cloudy all day, hovering between 45-50 degrees.

At first, I was not thrilled with this but once we got going, it was perfect. Until it started raining…sprinkling really.

But somehow, we managed to finish and not get too soaked. We must have been outrunning the rain because this was quite speedy for me!

  • Time: 48:17
  • Distance: 5 miles
  • Pace: 9:39/mile

Woo hoo! Not bad for a rainy Monday. Tomorrow will much warmer as will the rest of the week. Looking forward to it!

How was your workout today?

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Hi Everyone!

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My name is Amanda and I blog over at Two Boos Who Eat with my husband Andy. I was pretty excited to write a guest post for Sarah. Her blog is one of my favorites. I’ve been reading it for quite for some time!

I grew up with a marathon runner. My father runs anywhere from 25-45 miles a week! Growing up, I spent a lot of time at races and the running club my dad was a member of. I always felt that running was in my blood but never found a time to start.

I remember the first time I tried to run. I figured it would be easy. I could only run for about 30 seconds before practically passing out! I was out of breath, sore and tired. I kept at it and eventually was able to run a mile. (Though, I admit I’m still pretty slow. I can maybe run a 12 minute mile.) I honestly can’t believe how difficult running felt for me at first. I started to think that I would never be able to do it!

I started using the Couch to 5k program 9 weeks ago to help train myself for my first 5k. I’m running with my husband on March 27th! The Couch to 5k program is an excellent tool to help a new runner get off the couch and out running. I never would have imagined that I could run 3 miles! It’s a little scary being a new runner and I’ve experienced some pain along the way.

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My knees and heel on my right leg have been killing me. I went to a running store where they had me try on several pairs of shoes for people with motion control/stability issues. I wish I had bought these shoes earlier! I’m wearing Brooks Ariels. I also invested in a shoe wallet so I can run outside without holding my id or my keys.

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Buying an ice pack for my knee has helped tremendously too. It’s hilarious to me that I have given up junk food and soda for things like running shoes, shoe wallets and ice packs.

My first 5k is on March 27th and I hope to finish. I decided to stop giving myself a goal time because I should be thankful for the ability to finish over anything else. Slow and steady wins the race. I hope to continue running and would love to sign up for more races in the future.

Thanks for letting me guest post Sarah!

It is so good to be back in town but I am so glad to have left for a while because these have been the most amazing guest posts! I am so inspired by these ladies and I know you all are too. Thanks Amanda and good luck on the 27th!!

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Hi! My name is Mari from Namaste Mari and before I go on to tell you about my first 5K experience, can I just say how honored I am that Sarah chose me to do a guest post on her blog. Especially since she is one of the people that motivated me to run my first 5K. Ever since I started to follow her blog, she has inspired me with all the amazing things that she has done to make herself healthier in every aspect of her life!

Before I tell you all about my big day…let me just give you a little back story on me, if you don’t mind =)

A few years ago I was overweight and extremely unhappy in my own skin. After a really bad year, I decided to make a change! I went from eating fast food almost every single day to watching my portions and filling up on fruits and veggies instead of super sized fries. I also started to workout religiously…I went from weighing 220 lbs to dropping down to 138 lbs. I was even featured in Self magazine.

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However the quote in Self haunted me “I wanted to be the girl I envied, running down the street. Now I am, and I owe it all to Self!”. By the time this article was published my running was sidelined because of an injury; I developed plantar fasciitis.

Every time I would try to pick up running again, something would stop me dead in my tracks but this year was different…this was going to be MY year. I made a vow to myself that I would run my first 5K before the end of the 2010.  My plan was to run my first race in May but Jess from Fit Chick in the City encouraged me to run The Coogan’s Salsa, Blues & Shamrocks 5K Race at the end of March. I used the Couch to 5K Training regiment and I found it extremely helpful. It was easier to tackle this challenge one week at a time instead of looking at the big picture and getting discouraged. I joined a gym and would train whenever I would get a chance. I also found a great running partner on the other end of the Coast! Amanda from Two Boos Who Eat was also training for her first 5K and we became a great support system for one another! (Wish her luck on her upcoming race!).

When the race drew closer, I started to train in the park so that I could get accustomed to running on hills. A few days before the race, I started to develop pain in my shins…probably from the hills in the park Crap what did I do? I asked Jess for some advice and she basically told me to stop running until the race…she said one thing that stuck with me “do you want to run tomorrow or do you want to run for the rest of your life?”… the choice was simple. I took her advice and just relaxed for the next couple of days.

Race Day!

I could not have asked for a better day! The sun was shining and the sky was blue…the temperature was around 40 degrees…great running conditions. The race started at 9am but we got there a little early and it was a ghost town.

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My nerves were getting the best of me but having my family there was very reassuring, they even made me a sign. (titi is auntie in spanish…my niece held the sign)

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I  reluctantly parted ways with my family and found my place in line…before I knew it, the ghost town was filled with around 6 Thousand people!

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My legs were trembling either from the cold or fear…I started to talk to the lady next to me and told her I felt like I was about to go onto a Rollercoaster ride…you know that feeling? when you are excited to go on the ride but there is a little voice in the back of your mind, telling you to get off of the line.

Before I knew it, it was time!  I was off running my first race…

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I felt so great and then BOOM reality hit…THE HILLS! The race was being held in Washington Heights which is known for it’s hills and boy did I feel them. There were times that I just wanted to stop but I dedicated the 5K to my grandmother who passed away two years ago and I promised myself that I would make her proud. I fed off the energy of the people cheering and all the bands playing along the route and knowing that my family would be there at the finish line. I ran! I ran up and down those hills, I ran when I thought I had nothing left in me…I RAN!

And just like that I ran right through the finish line! (I completed the race in 33:06)

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The minute my legs crossed that line, my eyes filled with tears! I was filled with so much emotion, I finally did it! I went and hugged my family and sobbed like I just completed the NYC marathon because to me, I just did!

This is only the beginning for me…I can not wait to conquer many more!

Thank you for reading my recap and once again, thank you Sarah for including me in your guest posts!

Namaste…

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Hello, friends! I am currently in the midst of North Carolina and there’s not much time to think about blogging. Thankfully, I have another awesome guest post to share, this time from another vegan runner! Thanks Bianca, for sharing your story 🙂

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Hello. I’m Bianca — vegan, aspiring cookbook author, and the blogger behind Vegan Crunk. Sarah asked me to fill in for a day while she’s away.

On my Vegan Crunk blog, I typically stick to posts and food porn pics from my upcoming Southern vegan cookbook or from recipes I’ve made from my large collection of other people’s published vegan volumes (I’m a big cookbook hoarder!).

I rarely post about fitness goals or routines, though I hit up the gym five days a week.

Since I’ve been following Sarah’s blog, I’ve been inspired to push my workouts even further — namely to start running. A couple of months ago, I wouldn’t even dream of moving my feet faster than a brisk walk. The few times I’d tried jogging, I was out of breath within seconds.

I wouldn’t have considered myself out of shape by any means. For the past several years, I’ve taken weekly spinning, Zumba, boxing, and cardio aerobics classes with no problems. For some reason though, I simply could not run.

I’d almost resigned myself to never, ever running, but I can’t stand to fail at anything. I’ve always believed I can do anything I set my mind to, so I set a crazy goal: by this fall, I will run (even if it’s only part of the way) in Memphis’ annual St. Jude Half-Marathon (which raises money for children’s cancer research).

My friend Lindsey sent me the running program she uses, which starts you out with a little running time, then a little walking time, some more running time, and so on for 30 minutes. As you improve, you move up to increasing running time and decreasing walking time.

Here’s the program:

  • First step: 2 min. running/4 min. walking (repeat 5x)
  • Second step: 3 min. running/3 min. walking (5x)
  • Third step: 5 min. running/2.5 min. walking (4x)
  • Fourth Step: 7 min. running /3 min. walking (3x)
  • Five Step: 8 min. running /2 min. walking (3x)
  • Sixth Step: 9 min. running/2 min. walking/8 min. running./2 min. walking/9 min. running (1x)
  • Seventh Stop: 9 min. running/1 min. walking (3x)
  • Eighth Step: 13 min. running/2 min. walking (2x)
  • Ninth Step: 14 min. running/1 min. walking (2x)
  • Tenth Step: 30 min running!

So far, I’m on Step Three, and though it may not seem like much, running for five minutes straight is a big deal for me. You can go through one step per week if you choose, but I’m taking my time.

I’m aiming to do each one at least 10 times before moving on, but those running sessions are peppered in between my regular boxing, Pilates, and spinning classes. At that rate, it’s taken me about one month per step.

Hope this program helps any aspiring runners out there! See ya on the running track!

I am so thrilled for Bianca and I know she will be able to meet her goal. I used a program nearly identical to this one back in September 2007 and here I am training for my second half marathon. I never thought I would be a runner either, so those of you who want to run, give it a shot!

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I am out of town for the next few days so I have asked a few of my favorite bloggers to fill in for me while I’m away. Kim was the first local blogger I ever met and her friendship has been such a blessing. I hope you will enjoy her post! Please also check out her food blog 🙂

Greeting River City Fitness readers! 

I’m so glad you read Sarah’s blog and are encouraged by her healthy lifestyle.  I definitely am.  She has been a great source of encouragement to me while living here in the “River City”!

Since I started running in January 2009, I have noticed my feelings of competition and comparison have gotten stronger.  Sometimes, this is a great thing; other times, it can be very damaging.

Let me give you some timeline:

  • 10th grade: a 19 minute mile – I didn’t run at all
  • Jan 2009: 43 minute 5k pace 
  • March 2009 – my first 5k: 39.41 (I wanted it to be under 40)
  • November 2009: 35.49 (5k PR)
  • March 6, 2010: 36.03 (my last 5k with little training due to weather)

I was very, very happy with this time until I thought: Kim, you should have pushed yourself or you should have trained harder

While hanging out with a friend who also ran the same 5k last weekend, I asked her what her time was.  She said “Oh, it was very slow – a 29 minute.”  Ha – slow?  What was she thinking? 

Then I saw on Facebook this morning that a dude I know posted a 34 minute 5k.  How can these people who weigh more than me run faster than me?  I was shocked this morning – and then that makes me just want to get out and run.

But, if we only run because we want to be better than someone else, faster than someone else, skinnier than someone else – we are not running for the right reasons.

Here are some reasons you should run:

  • For your health
  • For your sanity
  • For your skin (Vitamin D, outside exposure)
  • For your skinny jeans

I love that last one.  In the past year + of running, my jeans size has gone from a 10 to a 6, my weight has dropped almost 25 lbs, and my cholesterol numbers were all better today than they were last year at this time. 

How do you beat your mind at the comparison game?  Set your own goals based on your abilities.  Don’t say, “Next 5k I want to beat so-and-so’s time.”  Say instead, “I want to run it without stopping” or “I want to beat my own time.”

That is my goal.  I am running a half marathon in June and I want to beat my first half’s time of 3:00:07.  That is my only goal. 

If you are going to compare – compare only with yourself.  Better yet, don’t compare at all.  Just get out there and run – for the health of it!  (That’s a slight change of a Louisville saying)

What are some good, healthy fitness goals you are setting for yourself?

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Breaking the funk

If you’ve read my food blog recently you might have seen that I’ve been in sort of a “funk” lately. Nothing has happened, I just feel “off” somehow.

But I think I’m finally starting to feel a little more like me again and today’s run really helped with that.

The weather was in the high 40’s and the sun was nowhere to be seen. At first, I thought this was a bad thing but it ended up being really great running weather.

As soon as my feet hit the pavement, I was enjoying the run. I just felt good. No aches, no pains, no heavy breathing. Just awesome!

  • Time: 38:07
  • Distance: 4 miles
  • Pace: 9:32/mile

This run was definitely a start to breaking me out of the funk. I’m hoping to do it again tomorrow!

I’m going out of town later this week and I have some really great guest posts lined up for you all that I know you will enjoy. But for now, I will “see” you tomorrow!

How do you deal with “the funk” in your life?

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