randomthoughtrunning

Running 13, 13.1's in 2013 and the thoughts along the way!

Thinkin’ on Thursdays

It is Thursday already, woo woo! Big weekend ahead of me and with the past week being a light running week, I have been thinking of all different things!

Counting down the minutes till my housewarming party, sure I am excited to have everyone check out my new place and enjoy the massive amounts of food I have been cooking all week, but REALLY excited to tap the keg and unveil my Buffett Basement Bar! 

Excited to share my party menu with you next week…here is a preview: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Dip…

I had a great week of workouts, coming off a really tough half and not much resting after, I thought I would be beat this week. But,  I had a ton of energy this week and feel good. 

Officially in a spring mind set, I have heard birds chirping each morning and seen two Robins…40 degree weather has felt like a heat wave, love it!

Thinking that my next half is just around the corner, Oceans Run half here I come on 3/10/13. The races seem to be coming quicker, but yet still feel like I have LOOOONG way to go. 

Enjoy your weekend!

Run On-

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See the Hill…Be the Hill

source:firerescuefitness.com

source:firerescuefitness.com

So my most recent race inspired this post and I figured I would share my views on hills. I have not met a runner who says they love hills, but I think a hilly course can cause a love/hate relationship. In the past, I would get angry, very angry when I was out on a hilly course. They put me in a bad mood and just made me wish the race was over. Lately, I have tried to change my attitude towards hills and for the most part it has made my runs better.

The first thing I have changed is noticing how strong I can be getting up a hill, when I focus on my strength rather than the size of the hill, its over before I can get angry. I actually have less knee pain (which I have been feeling more and more lately) when I run a hilly course. Compared to Manhattan which was only a few weeks ago, my body felt alot better throughout the race.

The next thing that worked really well for me at my last race, was staring at the shoes of someone in front of me. Reading that back, I sound like a creep, but really just look at the persons heels and focus on their feet, its distracting and something about watching someone elses feet helps forget about the pain you might be feeling.

Finally, I try to like the hill I am running. I try to remind myself at every race, that I am lucky to be in this race and that I am fortunate to be healthy and running. Same goes for the hill, I am running the hill to be healthy and feel a sense of accomplishment, how could I get angry at that????

My only other bit of advice, while I don’t think I could ever prepare for the hills in Colchester, try to run hills often. Big ones, little ones, maybe something you usually wouldn’t attempt…try it! Hills have a place in your training, hopefully you can find a way to love them…ok at least try to like them?

Run On-

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2 down…11 to go! Colchester Half Recap

colchester

Chilly Weather, dirt roads, and hills like I have never run before, did I like the Colchester Half Marathon? ABSOLUTELY! I actually loved it which is not usually the case when races involve this many hills. As you can see from the hill profile above, this was a tough course and I knew that, but I just jumped into it, stayed calm and relaxed as I tackled each hill.

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The positives:

I traveled down to Colchester the morning of the race for the 10am start and arrived at the High School to pick up my number and get settled in. There were about 400 people in the lobby and there were places to sit AND restrooms with no lines. It was great, my mom was my support crew for this race, so it was great for her as well to be able to sit and wait comfortably.  Major positives!

A few minutes before 10, the race director asked us to head to the start. As we shuffled to the start, other runners were chatting and very friendly, I was impressed. Much of the chatter was about the ultra low entry fee ($12!) and really that being the only good thing about putting ourselves through the torture that we were about take on. I wasn’t really sure what to expect with a $12 entry, but let me just say I have never met a nicer race director. This guy had more energy than all the runners put together. He started the race with us and would run through the crowd getting us excited. Sporadically throughout the race he would stop at a turn and make sure he high fived all runners. Finally, the last 1/4 of a mile was uphill and my legs were feeling it, the race director ran up along side of me, and talked to me the final minutes of the race…it was just what I needed and I finished strong.

The course itself was narrow roads with dirt roads mixed in. There were alot of cows (probably the biggest number of spectators were farm animals) and the hills were steep. It made for a challenging course and because of this I felt I was working with the other runners to climb the hills rather than pushing our time or trying to beat others. I have never run any of the popular obstacle races that are out there, but I am guessing that is what they feel like and knowing you are accomplishing something really HARD!

After finishing the race, I was welcomed back into the high school for a post race party and here is the best part of the whole race…there were SHOWERS! I had to continue traveling to New Jersey which was another 2 hours and to be showered and refreshed was amazing. I was thankful for a comfortable ride and my Mom was thankful for not having to ride with me in my running clothes.

Negatives:

There were none! I would say if you are someone who likes the whole race experience (medals, t-shirts, crowds, etc.) then this race is not for you, but give it a chance, you might meet some great new people and feel a type of accomplishment like you have never felt before.

Run On-

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Thinkin’ on Thursdays

How could I almost to forget to post my Thinkin’ Thursday post…its been a busy week and a busy weekend ahead but here are a few thoughts that have popped into my head….

Colchester Half Marathon this Saturday, can’t wait! I feel like its been so long since Manhattan and with the weather I have not gotten out as much as I would have liked to….goal time 2:06 or under

A lot of traveling ahead of me this weekend and really wondering what this storm is going to bring. Really…another weekend storm? come on!

Stoked that Jimmy Buffett tickets go on sale tomorrow, a sure sign that summer is around the corner!

I am still on the quest for the best smoothie recipe…maybe more veggies???

Looking forward to making some Mini Key Lime Pies tonight, thanks for the inspiration A Bicycle Built for Two (http://a-bicycle-built-for-two.blogspot.com/)

Enjoy your weekend!

Run On-

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Smoothies and More

Hope everyone had a good weekend and I realize I am saying this on Wednesday when it’s nearly the weekend again!

I had some great visits with friends and family and overall enjoyed my weekend. I got 7 miles in on Saturday morning, which was nice to finally get back outside, but unfortunately it was like ice skating more than running and really a slow run. Oh well! I did get outside this morning, which felt great. I will hit up the elliptical tomorrow and then its rest time before the Half on Saturday. Can’t wait!

I did attempt a few smoothies as mentioned before and have been adjusting to my new protein. Before I start, my smoothie craze has started because each year I give up coffee/tea/hot chocolate for Lent. I steer clear of all coffee shops for 40 LONG DAYS. So to fill the void each morning I make smoothies, while they are nowhere near the same as delicious as a Soy Mocha, they hold me over. So back to my new protein and smoothie recipes.

I decided to try something new on my last order of supplements. I primarily order from bodybuilding.com, I am in no way shape or form a body builder, but they have great prices, tons of variety in flavors of protein, and you can’t beat the shipping. I generally have an order at my door within 2 pays of placing it. I also like shopping with bodybuilder.com because I am not a fan of GNC and other chain supplement shops. I don’t have anything against them, but I just know what I want and don’t want to be bothered by the salespeople who are always trying to up sell me on something “better” than what I am buying. I have a background in Fitness and do a ton of reading on what’s “out there” in the supplement world, so I feel I have a pretty good handle on what I take.  I digress, but really check out bodybuilding.com!

I decided to try Pea Protein, yup you read that correctly and surprisingly its pretty good. I have been taking hydro whey for that last 2+ years and while I have no problems with it, I have read about Pea Protein and its easy digestion while still reaping the protein benefits. Here is the description from the Olympia Labs website:

“Pea Protein is a natural, vegetable-based protein powder derived from yellow peas (Pisum  ativum). Yellow peas are more commonly known as “split peas” and are used extensively in food preparation such as in soups and purees. Pea Protein is ideal for vegans, offers an excellent nutritional profile. Vanilla & Chocolate Flavor. “

So far I have had a good experience with it, it is very thick and a little less sweet than I am used to. I ordered the chocolate flavor which I regret slightly as I feel like I could add a lot more things if I had the vanilla flavor.  I don’t have any complaints or dislike besides the amount you can order. There are only 30 servings in a container, which for me only lasts about 2 weeks. I generally like ordering a 2-3lbs at a time, so I am not paying for shipping every other week.  Here are the smoothies I have made so far:

Choco-Peanut Butter Smoothie

1 scoop Olympia Labs Chocolate Pea Protein

1 tbsp flax seed

1 tbsp Teddy Natural PB

3-4 ice cubes

1c water

Aprox ¼ cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk

Pinch of Guar and Xanthum Gum

I found precut frozen strawberries and bananas by Dole in the grocery store which have been great for quick assembly in the morning for this next smoothie, pretty plain and simple

Strawbanana Smoothie

1 scoop Olympia Labs Chocolate Pea Protein

1 tbsp flax seed

1 c frozen bananas & strawberries

3-4 Ice cubes

½ cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk

¾ cup water

This next one was a reach, but I actually enjoyed it. I get teased because of my love for sweet potatoes, so when my Husband saw me making this, I think he finally accepted that I am crazy for sweet potatoes. I might omit the nutmeg tomorrow but still tasty

Sweet Potato Smoothie

½ cooked sweet potato (I left the skin on for an extra fiber boost)

1 c greek non fat yogurt

dash of cinnamon and nutmeg

1 c water

Agave nectar for sweetening

So far that is all in my smoothie quest, I have to note that most of these recipes were adapted from other bloggers, I love reading peoples recipes and attempting my own version with tweeks here and there. One of my favorites is heandsheeatclean.com, check it out, they put these few recipes to shame!

Run On-

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Thinkin’ on Thursdays

I survived the storm and hope everyone else is doing ok with the snow…After a good amount of Bloody Mary’s and finding some High School students to help me shovel out my house, things are settling down. Here is what I am thinking this Thursday…

Made it through the storm and snow is melting…I think will get outside for my 7 miler on Saturday

Looking forward to signing up for Wallis Beach ½ tomorrow, another one will be official!

Looking forward to coming up with some smoothies to shake up my morning drink

Counting down the seconds until Lent is over…no coffee and its only day 2!!!!

Excited to have a good visit with an older relative on Saturday, love catching up with older folks.

1 week until Colchester Half…looking forward to a no frills small half

Run On-

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Snowed In!

house

I hope everyone survived the storm and has adjusted to living with massive amounts of snow piles. I am indeed going crazy not being able to run outside and have turned to the dreaded treadmill for my workouts.

Sure I see people out running dodging snow, ice, and cars, but I am just too scared. One of the reasons I run is to relax and zone out. Having to worry about getting run over and face planting doesn’t allow for the relaxing time, so until then I will be on the tredmill.

Don’t get me wrong I LOVE the gym, with my background in fitness I think it is a requirement to love the gym. I love lifting and working up a good sweat, but for running, I prefer the road. There is nothing better than getting out and just running and taking in your surroundings.

Because I always try to take a positive spin on things, and if I ask myself one more time why I live in New England??? I reflect on what I have done to keep things interesting over the last few days to make up for my very boring tredmill runs.

I have been tackling down a solid lifting program to complement my running schedule. As mentioned, I love the gym and lifting but when training for halfs and fulls, the lifting has to take a back seat. I think I am zoned in to a great schedule that allows me to still get in my lifting without completely destroying my body for long runs and races.  Currently I broke down my lifting into 3 days: Upper, Abs, and Lower, generally it falls on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday The week before and after a race, just a light cardio schedule and lifting goes away. Not really rocket science, right? But it has helped me get a focused schedule going.

As always please consult with your doctor and ensure you are able to perform this lift. Ask a trainer at your local gym for tips and technique if you are not sure.

  • Tried out a new Protein Powder! I don’t want to get into too much nutrition on this blog, but will be happy to share things I have tried and enjoy. Nothing I share I encourage you try without taking into consideration your own health and wellness goals. I drink 1-2 protein shakes a day, generally post workout or as an easy snack on the go. I mix the protein with water, but have wanted to spice the same ol’ protein up a little, so I started with a new protein powder…Pea Protein, yes you read that correctly and who knew peas were so high in protein! Overall I am enjoying it, but I think I will go back to Whey after this container is gone. I have been experimenting with different add ins such as strawberries, oats and cocoa powder. More to come on my shake adventures soon…
  • I have been thinking that I need to get better about updating RandomThoughtRunning (RTR) and set the goal of at least 2 posts per week…I can do it!

So what have you been doing to keep busy with this snow?

Run On-

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Thinkin’ on Thursday

I plan to have a regular Thursday post that recaps the thoughts of my week and what’s ahead for the weekend.

 Thinking about “Nemo” that is coming our way tomorrow and how much snow we will actually have deal with…

Bumming about the Valentines Day Bar Crawl being cancelled. Check them out crawlinboston.com!

 Determined to get my 10 miler in tomorrow morning before the blizzard begins…it will be done!

 Thinking about how my next half is still 2 weeks away and excited for registering for the Run to Remember tomorrow.

 Deciding what beverage will be my drink of choice through out the blizzard…

 Wanting to get another pair of the Kinvara 2’s before they go extinct as well as bring in a pair of the Inspire Crop 2 from Lululemon into my gear.

Hoping everyone gets through the blizzard!

Run On-

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Why oh Why?

Why Oh Why?

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Why do I run? This is a thought that I mull over often, and I think the “Why” changes often.  Sure it’s for the obvious reasons staying healthy, feeling good, etc. But really why do I get up at the crack of down and run in 5 degree weather?

I think about how I have ended up with an addiction to a sport that requires such dedication and commitment with hours of time spent by myself grinding out miles in the freezing cold and blistering heat.

Maybe it was my early days…

Its hard to say when I started “running” but I did decide to take on my first 5k in college, before that I participated in High School Track (I use the term participate lightly, more to come in a few minutes) and was a competitive roller skater, yes a competitive roller skater…this will probably become a post all on its own some day. But I chose non-team sports for the most part, things that I could do on my own, which makes sense as I am pretty introverted. All of the sports also required tons of dedication, not to say that other sports don’t require dedication, but growing up I was at the rink both weekend days from about 6a-noon. As a 15 year old, I didn’t know I was supposed to sleep in and be lazy on the weekends, and Saturday morning cartoons, what are those???  So running was a good fit in doing a sport that was all up to me and requires 100% dedication.

Maybe it’s my love for AWFUL spectator sports…

I like sports a lot, but as for the ones I participate in, they are not the most exciting for spectators. First it was roller-skating, as I said there will more to come on this in the future for now we are going to think roller-skating is a normal sport for a kid to participate in. Roller-skating, maybe you think of Derby or even jumping and spinning to fun music? Nope, I participated in the most boring event, “Figures”, which means I traced a line three times and skated off, no jumps, no spins, no fun music. Did I mention this event was held at 5a, before the exciting events took place? Then there was Crew…I rowed in college on our club team, cool right? Sure this one was a little more exciting and even involved interacting with others, but as far as watching, fans were expected to stand on the shore at 6a only to see our boat come and go in less than a minute. So with my track record, running fits well, early mornings, a lot of waiting and about 2 minutes of me running towards them saying hi and running on.

Maybe it’s my determination even though not being very athletic….

As mentioned I participated on the High School track team, now I use that term loosely as I was the slowest kid on the team, so they put me on Javelin, where I succeeded to be the only contestant to throw the Jav end over end…but it was the first high school team that allowed me to join. This was after being cut from a Lacrosse team that did not have cuts and after two days of getting whacked with field hockey balls and I hung up my funny little stick.  I made a lot of friends and had a blast each spring. While not being the best, I still was determined to be on the team each spring and do the best I could. Back to roller skating, not only did I compete in this unique sport, I wasn’t that good…but I still stuck with it for 10 years, only to win one trophy (there were only 3 people in my event that day) again I was committed to this activity and was proud to be part of it which seemed to keep me involved more than winning trophies. Which brings me to running, I am not fast, I know this and I am not trying to win, but this sport allows me to compete against myself everyday and if I don’t do that well, it doesn’t matter because it is all up to me.

The why I think will always be a question, but there are definitely things in my growing up that have led me to this crazy sport! Why do you run?

Run On-

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