Sunday, June 30, 2013

Weekly Workouts 6/24-6/30

There's something about getting back into three sports and starting to train for triathlons that can make you feel constantly behind. I think I'm being hard on myself and I need to stop, but even looking at this week of workouts and the time I spent on them, I know I could have and should have done more. I only made it to the pool once this week because another opportunity got rained out. I've also been trying to increase my weekday biking mileage, and it has effected my long weekend ride for the last two weekends. I'll put my goals for this upcoming week down below.

Here are my workouts:
Monday: Rest day.

Tuesday: 19.8 miles at 17.7 miles per hour on the Upper Tampa Bay Trail.

Wednesday: Ran 2.32 miles on the treadmill before heading down to the pool for swim practice. The skies opened up and practice ended up getting cancelled. Traffic was thick on the way home so I called it a day.

Thursday: I went to the YMCA near me to try out a spin class, and it was insane! I loved it. The teacher is a triathlete and he killed us with hills. I cycled for 1:03 between warmup and the class.

Friday: I swam 2200 yards with a 1750 time trial and then ran two miles before walking just under a mile too cool down.

Saturday: I went down to St. Pete to meetup with Tori, Meg, Meghan, and Patrick to go to a Les Mills BodyCombat and BodyPump release party. It was a little over an hour and felt like a good workout, but when I woke up this morning and could hardly move I knew it was a really great workout. 

Sunday: I pried myself out of bed slowly to go ride on the Suncoast Parkway. I rode 21 miles at 17.5 mph. I went to the bike store on Friday and got clipless pedals and shoes, so today was my first time with those. I could definitely feel a difference. I felt faster and know that if my legs hadn't been on fire much of the way I would have been able to hold a faster than usual pace for me.

I'll talk more about upgrading to clipless pedals and shoes later this week.

Weekly totals:
Cycling: 63 miles
Swimming: 2200 Yards
Running: 4.23 miles

Kat is in Portland, so feel free to linkup with me this week!

Thursday, June 27, 2013


I saw this Old School blogging posts on a few other's blogs this week, and since they all tagged anyone, I decided to join in. It's an alphabet post, and it might help you get to know a little more about me. Some of the things you might not have ever thought you needed to know, but I'm going to tell you anyways.

A. Attached or Single? Married! Tim and I got married July 21st of last year! Our one year anniversary is almost here.
B. Best Friend? That's a tough one. I'd say I talk to my mom more than anyone else on a regular basis, so either my mom or my best friend from childhood Blair. Though we don't keep in touch as well anymore we've been friends since Kindergarten and she was one of the bridesmaids in my wedding.

C. Cake or pie? Honestly, neither. I don't crave sweets. I crave carbs and salt. Can I have chips?

D. Day of choice? Saturday. It isn't spoiled by the knowledge that it's the last day of the weekend.

E. Essential Item? I'd agree with Laura on this one. I can't see without contacts or glasses, so I guess those. I'm legitimately almost to the legally blind level.

F. Favorite color? Purple. Without a doubt.

G. Gummy bears or worms? Worms. The sour neon ones. But I like the name brand ones. I think the generic ones taste different and aren't as sour.

H. Home town? Chattanooga, TN. I went to college in Atlanta and now live in Tampa.

I. Favorite Indulgence? Chips. Doritos or Salt and Vinegar Kettle Chips.

J. January or July? I'm torn. I'm a teacher so I enjoy July for the summer aspect, but I'd take the weather in July. Can we mix those somehow?

K. Kids? No children. Not even a fur child.

L. Life isn’t complete without? Right now I'm going to say running. Just because I've taken three months off for the stupid stress fracture, and now that I'm coming back the runs are short they're just teasing me.

M. Marriage date? July 21, 2012

N. Number of brothers/sisters? 1 younger sister, Kacey!
O. Oranges or Apples? The little oranges that are easy to peel and come in those boxes.

P. Phobias? I'm afraid of heights and cats. I'd honestly rather be near a spider than a cat. I know that is so strange, but I haven't ever had one and always have thought they look like they just want to pounce any second.

Q. Quotes? 

R. Reasons to smile? There are too many to list. A few would be spending time with my husband (he always says that he's not as funny as I seem to think he is), a good workout, a complement from a student or coworker.

S. Season of choice? Fall. I really enjoy the transition from HOT weather to cooler weather and the drinks and foods that come with it.

T. Tag 5 People. And just like I did, if you'd like to do it, join!

U. Unknown fact about me? I'm fairly certain that my fear of cats meets this requirement, but something else? Hm. I've never tried Zumba. I don't have any tattoos. I've always wanted a teeny tiny nose piercing, but I'm totally not cool enough to pull it off. I've been to Africa twice but never to Mexico. When I'm not working out I'm pretty lazy.

V. Vegetable? Sweet potatoes or tomatoes

W. Worst habit? Biting my fingernails or picking the polish, piling the trash in the trash can instead of taking it outside

X. Xray or Ultrasound? Hate both. An Ultrasound led me to having the surgery that took be out of training for 6 weeks in August, and an Xray led to eventually figuring out I had a stress fracture. Ugh. Hate them both.

Y. Your favorite food? I haven't had them in months, but my favorite food has forever been chicken fingers. I love Mexican food and sushi, but if I have to pick one food it will always and forever be those.

Z. Zodiac sign? Libra.

Pick a question or two and answer it in the comments! Or write a post and share it with me!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

I'm ba-ack!

After about three months completely void of running, I'm back! On Saturday, I laced up the brand new pair of Asics GT-2000 I had ordered way back in March to transition back into, and I got ready for my run.

I felt two things as I was going through this process. First of all, I was incredibly nervous. I was just doing two miles (which I know is a lot for many people, but after the mileage I had been keeping didn't feel like as much to me), but I felt like I was heading out on a twenty miler. I was nervous that my foot was going to hurt, as I'd been having tingles and twinges in my heel at different times. There had never been pains, but I guess when your bone is growing back you feel random things sometimes. I was also nervous about how my time of from running had impacted my running fitness. I had worked so hard after coming back from six weeks off for surgery in August that I was nervous it would be equally as hard, even though I've been remaining very athletic during that time period.
In addition to the feeling of nervousness, I also felt excitement! I was finally going to be back to running! Running is what got me living a fit lifestyle in the first place, and going through the week without it felt odd. I was also excited to remember that getting ready for a run takes a lot less time and gear than cycling. I strapped on my Garmin and shoes and ran out the door. There were no bottles to fill or tires to pump air into or helmet to locate.

I walked for a few minutes to make sure I was ready. And then, when I reached the point I had determined, I started running! And the heavens didn't open up and the bikers that passed me didn't know I hadn't run in three months; it was just the same as it has always been. And it was perfect!

Yes, it was hot, but I didn't mind it.
I started out a little faster than I had planned.
I forced myself to remain over 10 minute miles to make sure I didn't do any damage.
That's why I wore my Garmin.
Nothing hurt.
Muscles that I hadn't used in a while woke up.
I turned and headed back for home.
It got a little harder the last half mile.
I no longer had to hold back to be over 10 minute miles. That's just where I was.
And then the Garmin dinged two miles and I walked again.
I had done it!

I was worried I'd be sore or have pain afterwards, but I didn't. I'm still going to be careful going forward and slowly build mileage back, but this gateway get back into it run felt perfect. I literally don't think it could have gone better.

And that's where I am! I'm starting a training plan this week or next for my next goal race in October. I'll tell you about that this week. My next marathon will be Jacksonville Bank. And I'll run a couple more times this week! 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Weekly Workouts 6/17-6/23

This was a good week. Looking back on it, I stepped up the volume of cycling, which definitely took a toll on my long ride this weekend. In the end, though, I know I have to get stronger and keep pushing on bike rides to get better. I also ran for the first time yesterday, and I swam three times as well. Overall, I'm proud of my efforts this week.

Here are my workouts:
Monday: I rode 20 miles on the UTBT averaging 17.3 mph. I went at 4 in the afternoon, which taught be a valuable lesson: get the rides done in the morning!

Tuesday: I swam 2200 long course meters. It was a good practice! I'm working on getting used to long course more. After swimming short course a couple of times after this, I can say that swimming long course definitely makes the short course laps fly by!

Wednesday: Originally I was planning on going to St. Pete Beach for an open water swim, but plans changed and I ended up running fartleks in the pool for 31 minutes and swimming 1300 yards.

Thursday: I rode 21.06 at 16.8 mph average. I rode in the morning, and it was a little cooler.

Friday: I took a rest day.

Saturday: I ran two miles!!!! It was good! I'll write more about it this week. All seemed to go well! After that I quickly changed into my swimsuit before I lost momentum and swam 2500 yards.

Part of the set I modified from one I had seen on Meghann's DailyMile:
Sunday: I've been riding 33-40 miles per weekend most weekends since buying my bike, and today the plan was to ride 33. After getting back to the car at 19.26, I decided very easily that it would be the end for me. My legs felt like lead and I was pushing hard to hit speeds that had felt easy the weekend before. Yikes!

Biking: 60.32 miles
Swimming: 6,000 yards 
(even though some were meters)
Running: 2 miles
(better than 0)

I'm excited to finally have mixed all three sports of a triathlon in one weekend! Though I only ran 2 miles, I'm happy to have started somewhere! I'll build from here, and I can't wait to see where that takes me. Bringing back running into the mix is going to make my weeks better; I can already tell.

What was your favorite workout this week!? If you write workout roundup posts, feel free to linkup below!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Top 5 Friday!

It's Friday again! These weeks are flying by. I really need to get on the ball more with housework. I've still got two huge baskets of clean laundry to put away and a dryer that I keep "fluffing" so the wrinkles will get out...and then I wait and repeat the cycle again. I'm sure I'm not the only one.

But that's neither here nor there. Here are my top five things today.
1. I couldn't decide whether to go with this one first or last, but since it's pretty much the moment I've been waiting for for three months, I'll stick with first. You may know that I used to be a runner way back in March and before. Or you may not. Since then I've been a pretty committed cyclist/swimmer. But, for the first time, one month from my last doctor's appointment, I get to run tomorrow! I mean, it's only 20 minutes, and it won't be fast, but it'll be a run. And hopefully all goes well and from there there will be more runs building on that one. I hope. Mary is going to help me with a comeback plan, but I'm wondering what you've done to come back from a running injury? How slow is slow when you're getting back from a stress fracture?

2. All week I've been treating myself to Starbucks and the sandwich that I didn't learn about until last week but apparently isn't new. It's a whole wheat English muffin with egg whites and turkey bacon. And it's delicious. To go with that most mornings this week I've been flipping on my favorite morning shows (Today, Kelly & Michael, and Price is Right).  I love breaks from school because of the ability to relax in the mornings. And when I've been working out, I just record them and pretend they're live when I get home.
3. I've been making a bunch of new recipes this week for lunches and dinners. My husband has definitely been happy about it, but I'll admit that I like eating more at home than getting takeout a bunch too. Plus, I figured out a way to find easy recipes without a lot of expensive ingredients. The BBQ chopped chicken, bacon, and apple salad above was especially good. I also really liked the chunky Greek hummus plate I shared on Instagram earlier this week too.

4. I'm a sucker for "free with purchase" things if it's the right thing. And this water bottle from Nuun was the right thing. You got it free with a 4 pack purchase, and since Nuun helps me drink more water, it was worth the purchase. I love these water bottles. I have the original blue one too, and it's my go to water bottle for the bike. And the watermelon was just too cute to pass up...
5. I'm also excited for upcoming weekend plans that I made this week! This weekend I'm looking forward to meeting up again with Beth to ride our bikes. She got a new tri bike that I'm going to stare at jealously. And then next weekend I'm going to a BodyCombat/BodyPump release workout with Tori (Hey Les Mills! It's been a while!) and a blogger's party for the Best Damn Race. So much to look forward to!

What's on your Top Five list? 
What do your weekend plans include?
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Thursday, June 20, 2013

A podcast about body image + my own thoughts

This morning on my bike ride, I was listening to a Marathon Training Academy Podcast. (I only listen to something with an earbud in my right ear, and only when I'm riding on a trail; I don't listen to it when I ride on the road for safety reasons). I've mentioned before that I like listening to podcasts on rides and long runs, and depending on the day I'll scroll through and find different topics. Sometimes I like race recaps, sometimes I like Q & A type discussions, but today I picked a more serious episode to listen to. I picked the one about the effect of running on body image.

I didn't know what to expect really, but I was look forward to hearing what the episode had to say, because I definitely have an opinion on what running has done for my own perceptions of my body.

The first part of the podcast I found particularly interesting because of my geeky history loving side. Angie talked about how society's views of weight has changed. I always tell my kids (I'm a history teacher...I don't talk much about that) how most of the time throughout history women who were heavier and lacked a lot of muscle definition were viewed as being more well off. They were viewed as having money to afford to be able to eat more, and they were viewed as not having to work much. And as unfortunate as it is, often times it is the portrayal of "well off" that becomes what society idolizes.
What I haven't explained to my kids, because I haven't really thought about it until hearing it today, is how society's views of weight have changed and why. Through print media (I'm sure you've read or heard about this before) and the use of Photoshop, women have (consciously or not) been taught to be more conscious of their body shape and size. Of that I knew, but what I found interesting was when Angie talked about the fact that now it is cheaper food (like fast food and processed food) that is worse for us and leads to weight gain; it now costs more to eat better. As time has progressed, and more processed foods have been created, it is now not constant access to an ample food supply that shows having money. Instead, the idea of being skinny and fit and having time to workout and money to buy healthy foods (lean means, produce, organic, etc) has changed society's views of what's desireable.

Though I realized that this was somewhat controversial while I was listening to it, I knew I wanted to mention it here because it was something that I don't think I had ever heard presented in that way. I know that we see thin models with perfect bodies that have been Photoshopped to high heavens, but I guess I never really thought about how and why society's perceptions have changed over time.

And that then brought them to a discussion of how running (and I'm going to add cycling and swimming since that's what I'm spending more time doing right now) has impacted people's perceptions of their own bodies. I would really encourage you to read their post or listen to this episode of their podcast, because hearing from so many listeners was really inspiring to me. I won't summarize what other people said, but I did want to chime in with my own thoughts on the topic.
I posted these "before/after" style pictures on my blog in September with a post about losing some weight after starting my running journey. But since posting about losing weight, I've starting thinking even more about how I feel than what number is on the scale.

Running, cycling, and being active has changed my thoughts about my body in an absolutely amazing way. I no longer look to the scale to tell me how I should feel about myself. I don't even look to how my clothes feel to tell me how I should feel about myself. Instead, on a daily basis, I just feel better. And I feel more powerful. Knowing that my body has carried me through ten half marathons, a marathon, and is now on its way to taking me through a triathlon journey that I don't even know yet where it will go makes me feel unstoppable. I look in the mirror and see muscle definition, strength, and power that I didn't see before I started running and living a fit and healthy lifestyle. Yes, I've lost a bit of weight, but no, I'm nowhere near a weight that at an earlier point in my life I though would be the weight that it would take for me to be "happy" at. And yet, I'm happy!

I don't look like someone on the cover of a magazine, but I no longer strive to. Instead, I continue working to achieve my goals. I no longer work to look like someone on the cover of a magazine, be it a beauty magazine or a running magazine. I just want to be the best version of myself. And that, on a regular basis, is how I view my body. I am thankful for what it does for me, and I'm thankful that as I continue pushing my limits it continues holding up and allowing me to do those things. Though I'm recovering from a stress fracture, it has only helped me appreciate my body and the things I'm able to do.
It just goes back to one of my favorite shirts from Mileposts, "I run this body". It's so true.
And to end, of course there are still times that I fall victim to wanting to be thinner or fit into these shorts differently or criticize what I'm looking in the mirror. It's not as though I walk around with constant 100% confidence, but I do my best to remind myself when I'm having those moments of the things that I wrote about above. It doesn't always work, but it does help. I just wanted to add my opinions on how running had shaped my body image after hearing all the inspiring stories Angie said people shared on their Facebook page.

And again, most of what I wrote about in the first half of this post came reworded from the May 31st podcast episode of Marathon Training Academy. I'm feeling the need to properly cite my sources here since I got so much from it. I'm thinking the endorphins from a great ride also helped me be so moved by this particular episode.

How has running or being active changed your body image? 
Do you listen to podcasts when you run?
Do you ever get emotional while you're reading or hearing a particularly moving story when you're working out?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

My Current Wish List (and asking for input)

 My husband has loved video games since he was little. Though he doesn't often have time (or as much interest) to play them now, he gets excited for certain game releases and will spend a few hours a week playing them when they come out. And for some reason, he also gets excited about new gaming consoles coming out. Since Xbox and Playstation just announced their new devices, Tim went ahead and let me know what he wanted for his birthday and for Christmas. Though they're still far away, that's around when those things come out, and he wanted to have it ASAP after that. 

That then started my thought process of the things that I would like to have as well...and when I started showing him, he responded by asking if this was going to be a bike focused Christmas? I guess that's what it's looking like. Though some of it I'll end up getting before my birthday or Christmas, others will be perfect gifts when those times come. And the main reason I'm posting this is to get suggestions and recommendations on a lot of this stuff. I want to make sure I'm asking for or buying the right stuff...
First, I really want a trainer. I read about people who hop on the trainer to get in some time, and I'd like to be able to do that as well.
This is a CycleOps Magneto trainer. Any suggestions on which trainer I should get? I've found that CycleOps seems to be popular, but I don't know anything about why one is $150 and one is $1000.

I want a triathlon kit, specifically one from SOAS Racing. I'm working on locating these in my size on different sites, but they're hard to find.
Are there other brands of triathlon kits that you like?  

I want the Garmin 910XT. I want a triathlon watch that I can swim in, and I've seen how useful it is across all three sports. 

This is another area that I don't know enough about, but I know I want clip pedals and cycling shoes, as I'm riding now in flat pedals and running shoes. Any recommendations on what pedals and shoes to get? Do the shoes matter? I feel like I see a wide variety of prices and am not sure why...
For now I think those are my main things I'd like. I'm thinking I may need to get a wetsuit, but the price on those scares me so much that I'm not even willing to officially add it to my wishlist. Where do you get wetsuits that don't cost $400?! 

Thanks for your help and advice!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Potpourri: A prize, a movie, and a bike

I have today a bunch of random stuff, some of which is related to my weekend, some of which isn't.
After riding 40 miles Saturday, I headed home to rest and relax. Then I got onto Facebook and twitter at apparently just the right time and saw that someone had posted about Polar giving away a new RC3 GPS Tour de France version (their newest watch) if you found them at their secret location. It just so happened that secret location was at the trail I had just been at earlier in the day, so I decided to head up there and see if I would be the first one. I thought it was a triathlon watch and I've been wanting a GPS watch I could swim in for so long, so I was super excited!
And it turns out, he was pulling out as I was pulling into the parking lot and I had made it! I was the first one there and won the watch. I was so so excited, though not as thrilled to have my "lounging on a Saturday" picture blasted from their twitter and Instagram channels. But, I won't complain since I won an awesome new watch! I just found out from their twitter people, though, that it isn't waterproof, so I can't get it in the pool at all. It is splash resistant, however, and can be used on the bike and on runs..


On Sunday morning Tim and I got up to see the 9:15 am showing of Man of Steel. You see, my husband's favorite thing to do on his days off is to get up early and go see a morning movie. He loves movies more than anyone I've ever met, and he also likes to do other stuff during the day, so he likes to get them out of the way. I don't like going to see movies. I don't know why, but I essentially have to be forcibly dragged to them. I wasn't planning to go with him, but I could tell he really wanted me to, so I caved. 
Turns out, I really liked it! I guess I like that kind of movie, even though I don't always think I will. I also loved The Avengers, so maybe this is my thing. I don't know. I don't claim to be a film critic of any sort. But, I thought this was really well done with amazing imagery and imagination. I know with 100% certainty that I do not have the creative ability to come up with the scenes, worlds, and machines that they did in this movie. It was impressive. And I'm not going to lie, the actor cast as Superman wasn't too bad to look at either. 


Thanks to my favorite Instagram account, Targetdoesitagain, I learned that all the pretty beach cruisers are on sale this week at Target. They shared a yellow one yesterday, and then today I found this beautiful purple and flowery one for $95.
I want it so much! I would put a basket on it, and it already has a cupholder! I can see myself riding it down the road to pick up groceries to put in the basket or for errands, but Tim says I would always pick the car, especially when I can't find enough time to ride my first bike love. He's probably right, so for now I think I will just continue sharing this pretty and hope to live vicariously through anyone who does go and buy it. And I guess, it normally only costs $105, so if I decide weeks later that I just must have it, the extra $10 won't break the bank.

And that's what I've got for today. I'm planning on working on my next training plan this week and will share for you what my next big goal race is soon. I'll give you a hint: it's not that December marathon, but sooner. And, it's of the three sport variety.

Did you see Man of Steel? Did you like it?
Do you have a multisport watch? Which do you have?
 Do you have a townie bike?

I'm linking up with Molly and Sami today.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Weekly Workouts 6/10-6/16

I haven't committed one way or the other (still) to whether I'm going to workout today or not. I'm thinking about going and running in the pool, but I'm still so beat from yesterday's bike ride that there's a good chance that I won't. I have had a great week in workouts this week, and I know it's going to build on a solid end to the no-running-training in this last week before my first test run next Saturday.

This past week of workouts:

Monday: I killed myself in the community gym with riding the stationary bike, doing core and arm weights, and finishing walking at a fast pace on a steep incline. I kid you not, I was pooling sweat, and I think people may have been looking...I like to think they were a little jealous.

Tuesday: Tuesday's swim was awesome. I did 4700 yards with the swim group, and I loved it. But I was tired.

Wednesday: I took an off day.

Thursday: Meh. This is the only workout that I did this week that I feel like maybe wasn't as much as it should have been. I rode 12 miles and averaged 16.8 mph. From here on out I'm making a goal to ride at least 15 miles as my weekday rides. I also need to be better about getting more rides in during the week. Soon, a training plan will fix that.

Friday: I got up early (5:30) and swam 3000 meters long course. Holy wow! How come that long course swimming is such a shock to the system? I definitely got enough yards this week in the pool.

Saturday: I loved my Saturday ride. I did the first 25 miles with Tori and Meghan and then broke off and finished another 15 alone. I averaged 17.6 mph on those 40 miles, and that makes me happy. And tired. I think it's a theme of the week. 

This week my focus is going to be on making sure my foot is okay before I go for my test run on Saturday. I've still been feeling twinges and feelings in it every once in a while depending on how I'm standing, but I can't decide whether it's pain or healing or just normal feelings. It's stressing me out a little bit. I'd really like to get back to normal running.

How were your workouts this week?

Friday, June 14, 2013

Five Things Friday

Happy Friday! This week has been productive in the sense that I've gotten a lot done around the house, but not working right now has left me lots of time to waste and enjoy with my own choices. I've been reading (and enjoying quite a lot) You Are an Ironman, and it's inspiring me to continue in my journey to complete a triathlon. And I've been doing my best to eat at home instead of running out to Chipotle or Subway or other "healthy" but not inexpensive places. So far it's working well!
+My favorite at home lunch this week has been loaded sweet potato (guac, tomato, and black beans inside), grapes, and carrots with Greek yogurt ranch dip. I buy the sweet potatoes that are wrapped in plastic; I pop them in the microwave for 7 minutes and then load them up! They're delicious...

+I am, though, still missing the Keys. I'm moving out of the vacation hangover, and I've finally washed all of the clothes and unpacked the bags. That is always the signal to me that the vacation is over and it's time to get back to real life. I don't normally unpack the day we get back because I need the time to slow back into real life. Do you get it all done and unpacked quickly?

+I worked out twice this week in the morning. I biked yesterday in the later morning, and this morning I actually got up at 5:20 to make it down to a 6:15 am swim practice. And do you know what I realized? I get all this "morning workout" hype. I've never been a morning workout person during the week, ever. I've always been an afternoon person, but the feeling of having your workout done and the whole day before you is amazing and totally worth it! I'm going to be integrating a lot more morning workouts into my route.

PS I typed morning workout into Pinterest to see if there is anything good, and I've never seen so many almost naked men in my life. I'm not kidding. Go try.
+As I was watching Today this morning, they showed some pictures of iconic images reimagined as selfies, and it cracked me up! It's a campaign by the Cape Times, and I think it's so unique! I love it! Go check out the others, including Jackie Kennedy and Winston Churchill.
+And lastly, like half the rest of the running world, I saw Spirit of the Marathon II on Wednesday. I really enjoyed it. I won't say that it bowled me over or was insanely different than the first, but it definitely inspired me and motivated me to continue pursuing my goals and dreams. I loved the stories of the people they chose, and now I want to go eat at the pizza shop of the Pizza Runner! He had a great story. 

I think my favorite, though, was Ylenia Anelli. She's a mom who owns a small running shop in a small town in Italy, and I loved watching how proud her kids were of her. She said that her son runs to her crying as she finishes each of her races, and he got so much pleasure out of picking her bib up for her. It inspired me to see a family that was so supportive of their mom's running passion. If you saw it, what was your favorite story?

And I mentioned earlier this week that I was looking for more running inspiration and was hoping this would reignite the fire, and while it made me more excited to start running again, I think actually running is going to be the determining factor in how excited I am to start again. I know I can't wait to go on that first run, and I'm looking forward to seeing how I can incorporate running back into my schedule in an enjoyable and not all-consuming way like I did before my injury. I do know that I will absolutely and definitely be running a December marathon, and I'm 99% sure it'll be this one:
I'm going to wait to register, though, since I'm still out quite a bit from Chicago and I want to be sure I'll be able to run it before I register. Did seeing the movie make you add any races to your fall calendar?

But anywho, those are my five things this Friday!
Enjoy your weekend!

Disclosure: I received a free ticket to the movie from Fathom Events in exchange for my review.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Swimming long + My running fear

Yesterday I joined the XP group again down at a pool in way South Tampa. It's a long drive for me, but it's motivating to swim with others who are faster and therefore push me to go faster (because I've got a competitive spirit). I got there early and introduced myself to Courtney who hadn't been there when I was there the time before. We decided to jump in and start a warmup and mini set before everyone else got there. We quickly racked up 1300 yards between a 400 warmup and 9 X 100's descending by three. Then the rest of the group got there, and the set was long. We did a bunch of stuff that ended up adding up to 3400 yards (that's a link to the DailyMile with the full workout). So in total, I swam 4700 yards between the two. When I was done, I was tired.

I had planned on waking up this morning to ride on the UTBT, but when I woke up I could barely move. I decided to take an unplanned rest day since I will be able to workout every other day this week. Plus, it was clear to me last night and the intense sweat session I put myself through the day before I needed a break and some time to recover. Thinking back (to last night), it probably wasn't the smartest to up my yardage that much for recovery purposes, but it was fun to put in that many yards.
Here's the problem. I'm starting to really really love swimming and cycling so much that I don't have trouble planning workout weeks without running in them anymore. I haven't been allowed to run since the end of March, so I guess I've just gotten used to it. And to be honest? I'm a little worried that I'm not going to love it as much when I get back to it (next Saturday I'll do on my first attempt...unless I cheat and try next Thursday out). I'm worried that I'll be running and wishing I was swimming or cycling. I'm hoping when I wake up in the morning I look as forward to a run as I do to a swim or a bike ride. And it scares me...what if I don't? 

I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

Since I'm having to delay Chicago, I've mentioned that I have to decide on which marathon I want to run in December. But I just keep searching for triathlons. I'm now officially registered for three, and I've got my eyes set on another big one in the fall. I need to focus on finding a marathon.

But! I'm doing something tonight that makes me hopeful that I'll be longing to run again and register for my replacement marathon. I'm going to see Spirit of the Marathon II!
I've watched the first one several times, and I watched it a couple of days before the Disney Marathon to get me pumped up and motivated. I'm thinking that means this one will have the same effect. So, my plan is to go see it, come home, and make a decision on which marathon to run in December. I should have a lot to report on if I actually follow through as planned...

When you've been injured have you ever found things to fulfill/replace your love of running?
Do you love swimming, biking, and/or running?
Will I start loving running again?
Are you going to see Spirit of the Marathon II?

So many questions...

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My favorite monthly treat

I've subscribed to at least 4 or 5 of the monthly subscription boxes, and I've been varying levels of happy with each. Some of them stopped sending good stuff once they built up subscribers, and others I just lost interest in. I've cancelled all of my others, but I do have one box that I've now subscribed to for seven months and love so much.

Every month I look forward to my Popsugar Must Have Box coming to my door (...and because it's already starting to sound like it in my head, I just want to make sure it's clear that this isn't a sponsored post at all. I don't get these for free, and I signed up all on my own). The box costs a little more than the others ($35) but always includes great stuff. The value of the items always adds up to over $100, and I use most of what is in each.

So instead of posting about it monthly, I just thought today (since mine came yesterday), I'd share with you all of the ones I've received so far, my overall impression, and what I've used or haven't. It'll go quickly...
June: I loved this box mostly because of the Gorjana scarf and the Revenge Wears Prada book. I'm also happy with the full sized Juice Beauty facial moisturizer that smells amazing. And I already ate most of the popcorn; it was yum.

May: I was much more pleased with this one than some of the months prior. I'm already using regularly the Beauty Blender, I ate the chips, I shared the margarita mix on our trip this past week, and I used the hat at the Keys. I haven't used the lip stuff or the game yet, but I know I'll eventually pull them out.
April: I was a little bummed that there were so few items in this box, but I LOVE the kai oil. I left it in Alabama when I went to my sister's law school graduation, and I'm hoping to get it back soon. That chocolate was yummy and didn't stand a chance in this house.
March: I wasn't happy with the March box. I don't need a silly wine opener, no matter how cute, I didn't like the necklace, I don't eat peeps, and I'm afraid of washing items that are dry clean only in the washing machine. I haven't used the mascara, so I really didn't find anything that great in the box. And that month I actually considered cancelling. I'm now glad I didn't.

February: This is up for one of my favorite months so far. I love those panties, ate the chocolates super quickly, and use the towel and lip stain. In the end, it was a big win.
January: There is a theme for all the months, and this one was supposed to be New Year's resolutions. I've blown up the ball, but I didn't care for the watch. I use the lip gloss, and I've eaten the bars and the hot chocolate. Those I liked.

December: This was my first box, and I was really excited about it. I keep the mini emergency kit in my purse, use the mugs frequently, and put the soap out in the guest bathroom. I haven't used the tea yet, though I'm trying to become more of a tea drinker.

I always post about these boxes when I receive them on Instagram, and people comment that they're interested or wondering what the boxes are, so I thought it was worth sharing. To me, since I'm trying so hard not to spend extra money on frivolous things, I look at this as my once a month treat that ends up feeling like a little present. Every box feels like a gift that someone put time into picking out. In the end if they start going in the direction of January or March again I might end up cancelling, but I definitely think they end up sending more good ones than not.

I'm still thinking of signing up for one of the beauty boxes, though I've done two before and wasn't pleased. For now, though, I'm still sticking to this one.

Do you subscribe to any monthly boxes that you really enjoy? Do you subscribe to this one?

I did use referral links in this post, so if you click on one and sign up I get a point or something of the sort that might lead to me getting a free box at some point in the future. If you do decide to sign up and use my link, I'd appreciate it. And if you want to try it out they do have a coupon code for $5 off the first month: REFER5.
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