Saturday, April 25, 2015

A Long Run and Group Nap Time

Winter feels like it is never going to give up this year. We had snow flurries on Thursday and freeze warnings the last few days. This morning it was chilly and I actually had to track down my running jacket.

Fun fact: my hair is fine, but super slippery and it usually takes 3 elastics to keep it in check. I know you were all wondering.

I actually managed to leave on time (I'm not good at that on Saturday mornings) to go meet up with the group. We ran our usual loop and complained about how cold it was. After a short break, I headed back out to get in some more miles. I had already told Tom I was planning on doing my long run today, or I might have been tempted to get back in the car and drive home.

Getting almost 7 miles in with the group definitely made the rest of my run not seem so long. I may need to find someone to run long with when I start marathon training later this year.

After I got home and showered I made biscuits and gravy, which I promptly devoured. I'm getting much more successful making biscuits with my grandma's recipe - practice makes perfect!

Then we watched tv and had group nap time (I actually napped a little bit today!). Buddy was loving it.

This was $1 at the grocery store the other day, I couldn't pass it up.

And watermelon Nuun is back for the summer, so I restocked my supply the other day. I love that Nuun almost always has a water bottle or pint glass that they put in with every order (they post on the home page when they're available) - naturally, I love that this one is a watermelon water bottle.

I'm looking forward to not setting an alarm in the morning, fingers crossed I actually manage to sleep in!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Watermelon Bumblebee

Some days, I just don't like speed work. It's hard, and I'm lazy.

I had a tempo run on the plan for today, though it ended up being something closer to a progression run. I was dragging my feet for a bit and used a combination of angry music (Linkin Park) and Gilmore Girls to get through my 6 miles.

I did a 1 mile warm up, followed by four faster "tempo" miles and a 1 mile cool down.

These were my fast miles:
1. 8:27
2. 8:20
3. 8:20
4. 8:00

Not too shabby.

This little flower was pretty cute hanging out on its own by a tree. It's only about 6 inches tall.

And some requisite Buddy pictures:

I couldn't turn down this sherbet today - Tom says it tastes like watermelon bubble gum.

That reminds me of high school choir, anyone else learn the "watermelon bumblebee" trick for when you forget the words to a song? 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Enter: Running

I'm so behind. I keep meaning to post and then time just gets away from me.

Sunday I was randomly super grumpy. It was one of those I don't like any of my clothes, everything is stupid and I don't know why kind of days.

Enter: running.

I hit the basement for a few miles (and some sprints thrown in for fun) and felt about a million times better after I was finished. Isn't it crazy how a good run can turn your whole day around?

On Monday we had an insane amount of rain. It down-poured all morning, which divided all the usual hyper-aggressive New York drivers into two groups: those who continued to drive as if everything was normal (way too fast), and those who drove 25 miles an hour on the freeway. It was fun.

The parking lot I was in flooded, so I had to fully submerge my shoes in several inches of water to get in my car. Also fun. I drove home barefoot.

My run was supposed to be an easy 4 miles, but I was feeling it, so I ended up running 5 instead. I also managed to remember to do some Post-Run Power Exercises - they're feeling easier, so that seems like a good sign.

Today I was psyched to run all morning and then when it was finally time, I dragged my feet. What is that about? I had an easy 3 miles with the Gilmore Girls and then Buddy and I hung out on the back deck while I cooled down.

It's definitely looking springy around here

Dinner tonight was salmon (from Kodiak, thanks Mom!) with a worcestershire/butter glaze, broccoli and green beans. You should be jealous.

What's for dinner at your house?

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Go With It

Friday morning I didn't have anywhere to be until noon, so I tackled the dishes that we (yet again) let pile up. Then I was struck by a super random urge to clean more things, so I decided to just go with it. These things don't happen often, so I try to take advantage when they do.

I cleaned the kitchen counter - I actually moved things and cleaned under them (I know, it's madness over here). Then I did some vacuuming and dusting and swept. From the amount of hair I swept up, you would think both buddy and I would be bald (for a short hair dog, Buddy sheds an impressive amount).

We had group nap time (the boys napped, I just relaxed with the pooch) in the afternoon. Buddy is the best lounging companion.

The Rivertown Runners (my weekend running buddies) had a brewery meet up Friday night, so Tom and I went and enjoyed some free beer. It's always funny to see people in non-running clothes. We don't always recognize each other!

This morning I was up bright and early to hit the trails. The weather was just about perfect, sunny and mid-50s. I did not feel like running when I woke up - my cold is really lingering and I had a headache - but about a mile or two in, I was so glad I went. It ended up being a really nice run!

We ran our usual 7 miles, my watch calling it 6.58 miles at a 9:10 pace.

Buddy hung out on the deck with me when I got home.

A nice run, coffee, and sunshine - an excellent start to the weekend!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Never-ending Colds

I've been laying low the last couple of days. I keep joking that there's just a line of different colds waiting in my body, and each time I start to get better from one, the next steps up to take its turn. The current variation is in my sinuses and chest. It's really fun.

Yesterday afternoon I had some speed work on the agenda, but instead I spent the afternoon on the couch with this guy:

 He loves when people don't feel well, that means he gets to cuddle on the couch.

This afternoon, I made my way to the basement to try to get a run in. I realized pretty quickly that speed work was still not an option, but I managed 4 miles without dissolving into an endless coughing fit, so I'm counting it as a win.

The weather has been much nicer lately, so Buddy and I have been spending some quality time hanging out on the back deck.

Tom and I started watching The Blacklist a few weeks ago. Have you seen it? We flew through the first season and are almost caught up to the newest episodes.

What are you watching lately?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Running Outside and a Buddy Selfie

I have spent so many runs on my treadmill lately that it feels weird to run outside. It was really pretty out Monday afternoon, so after I dragged my feet for a while, I ran a few miles around the neighborhood. 

It felt hot!

My legs were still a little sore from the trail race on Saturday (mostly the outside of my right shin, which is random), so I wasn't breaking any speed records, but it was a decent run. It always feels like a bigger accomplishment to actually run outside on my own. My laziness is really impressive, and it's much easier to just run on the treadmill.

The yard is getting green again, and the flowers are starting to bloom!

Today was cloudy, so I didn't feel guilty about running on the treadmill. 3 easy miles followed by some Post-Run Power Exercises from the Foodie Runner (she has a half marathon PR of 1:21:23, so I feel like she knows what she's talking about). I've been trying to do these exercises after easy runs lately, and I have lofty goals of trying to actually do some strength training/cross training again (this is a never ending goal, as I have not found a way to actually stick to it).

This is as close to a Buddy selfie as I've managed. He always turns away from the camera or tries to lick my face.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Trail Race Recap

Saturday morning I was up bright and early to head to the Blue Mountain Reservation for a trail race.

 I rode up with one of my weekend running buddies and we got there with more than enough time to check in and pick up our bibs. The race was so small, we probably would have been fine showing up about 15 minutes before the start.

I don't know the official number of runners, but there was a 5k and a 10k that were capped at 150 between them. I would guess the actual number was somewhere closer to 75 or 80 runners.

We spent a good 10 minutes watching a guy try to fix the start/finish line banner after the wind snapped one of the zip ties that was holding it up. It was a very complicated fix that involved a picnic table, two sticks and some rope. It was pretty entertaining.

The race started a few minutes late to allow some stragglers to get their bibs, and then we were off through the muddy start line. The trails were really beautiful, but definitely more trail-like than most of us are used to. There were loose rocks, tree roots, a couple of very steep climbs (and descents), and lots of mud and water. The man in charge declared that it was "the cheapest mud run you'll ever find."

The course was a 5k loop, so those of us running the 10k ran the loop twice. I'm not a huge fan of running the same hills more than once, but it was generally a fun course.

There were plenty of post-race snacks and drinks, though the promised REI branded swag turned out to be a pair of shoe laces and some lip balm. I don't know that I would call that swag, but with a registration fee of $15, I guess I can't complain.

I started my watch at our official "everyone count down from 10" start and stopped it a few yards after the finish line. It came up with 5.85 miles in 58:00. The clock at the finish was right about at 1:00:00, so I'm not really sure what time to claim. It wasn't chip timed, and who knows how accurate their course measurement was (and there weren't mile markers).

It's ok though, the point was to run a fun race someplace new. You can't really compare trail race times to normal race times anyway, we were all running a minute and a half to two minutes slower than our usual pace.

My shoes may be dry by now, but they could definitely use a run through the rain to clean up a bit.

I spent Saturday night babysitting. The three year old I was watching told me I was bad at puzzles. Thanks kid.

Today was amazing weather. It was sunny and warm! We finally brought the cushions up for the patio furniture, and Buddy and I had a nice morning lounging on the back deck.

I just finished reading Wild. It was pretty good, though I never had a hard time putting it down. I want to see how the movie turned out, I've heard mixed reviews.

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