Monday, April 25, 2016

A Week of Workouts - April 25, 2016

Hello, everyone!  It's time once again for the weekly progress report.  It's been a yoga-heavy week, with about 31 miles of running. 

These are some of the yoga challenge photos I have been taking this week.  Also, obliques and triceps YAY!

Monday - 6.7 @ 8:50 on the treadmill.  I did 40 minutes at a nice aerobic pace, then did a 20-minute 4/3/2/1 ladder alternating between a 7:15 and a 10:00 pace. 

Here's your weekly "my dog is a beggar" photo.  She wants scrambled eggs 'n' kale.  And she would probably eat it, too.  I have seen her eat raw lettuce. 

Tuesday - 1.8 @ 8:14, to get my butt over to the yoga studio.  I love that I live within walking/running/biking distance now, but the hills in the way are insane!  Like, 150 feet of elevation on this tiny run!  I made it to yoga in time, and SURPRISE it was a hot yoga class.  Needless to say, I was disgustingly sweaty after.  My husband swung by to pick me up on his lunch break, and he was like "ew, get a towel."  I guess I need to master the art of running with a backpack, so I can take a change of clothes.

That night, I made the Molly Katzen Moosewood Cookbook veggie burgers and home fries.  Both were delicious.  I ate a top bun, too, it just wasn't very aesthetic for this photo, heh.

Wednesday - I did 30 minutes of weights, just bench press and some barbell rows followed by pull ups with the resistance band.  My gym partner was out of town, and I felt a little lost on the weights floor so early in the morning.  I then did 45 minutes on the treadmill, but as sprint intervals.  I did two minutes at a 7:15 pace, then one minute at a 10:00 pace to recover, until the time was up.  It ended up something like 4.5 miles.

Thursday - 4.1 @ 9:17 on the trails at Veteran's Park.  I also started on online yoga challenge that involves a lot of memorization and photographing myself.  It is sort of forcing me to be less self conscious with the selfies (haha that sounds weird).  So far, I'm liking it.  It's cumulative, and takes less than 10 minutes of my time each day.

Friday - 60-minute yoga class in the morning.  I have no idea why I did so much yoga this week.  I guess I'm just really into it right now.

Yoga challenge photo.

...and an outtake.  This was before I figured out that the best way to "gym selfie" is to take a video and then use screenshots.  The more you know.

Saturday - 12.1 @ 8:47 with the Birmingham Track Club Long Run folks.  This run was A DISASTER.  I honestly can't believe the pace ended up so fast.  In a nutshell, I felt like I was going to barf (or worse) the entire time.  I woke up early, felt a little nauseated, and almost didn't feel like eating my pre-run breakfast.  I forced it down my throat anyway, and chased it with coffee.  We went up Key Hill immediately (just...ridiculous climbing) and I almost threw up coming down the back side.  I made two bathroom stops.  I couldn't bring myself to try any fuel until mile seven, when I had about a quarter of a caramel GU and threw it out in disgust. 

The last two miles were a complete blur, and I stopped again to eat a salt packet at Starbucks.  The weather really was not helping.  I would have walked the last two miles, except some of my friends noticed I was no longer running with the group, and they circled back to find me.  Then, they distracted me with simple questions until we were all the way back.  Thank you, thank you, thank you SO MUCH Teresa and Travis!

I still have no idea what happened on this run.  I can only guess that my nutrition was off.  I ate the exact same dinner and breakfast I always do, except I also had a bit of vanilla ice cream and some peanut butter cups late at night.  If that is what did me in, I will be very sad.  Or who knows...maybe it was just a little illness of some sort.  (And PS I'm fine now.)

Lunch and a magazine on the balcony Saturday afternoon.  Whatever was wrong with me, it really messed up my appetite.  I was completely craving salty foods and vegetables.  Must have been (or caused) a salt issue. 

Sunday - 1.5 @ 10:00 to warm up my legs, then a 90-minute Ashtanga yoga class.  My favorite. 

Totals - Just about 31 miles of running, including some trails, some speed work, a long road run, and a run commute.  Three yoga classes.  Just 30 minutes of strength training (which I'm not really feeling lately).  

The end!  Have a great week!

Monday, April 18, 2016

A Week of Workouts - April 18, 2016

This is going to be a quick one!  It's federal tax day in the U.S., and needless to say I am busy.  It's also Marathon Monday, and I've been excitedly watching the results of the eleven (!) people from my track club who ran in the Boston Marathon.

I did finish this book, a light running-related memoir.

Also of note:  I really think I got the weight lifting bug out of my system, and I am starting to dial back on those workouts again.  Just trying to keep it interesting, and mix up the training.  I'm still planning to do weights each Wednesday, and focus mostly on my weak areas (chest, shoulders) and performance goals (pull ups, core strength).

Monday - 3.2 @ 9:32 on the treadmill.  I just didn't feel much like running, for whatever reason.  I followed it up with ~30 minutes of weight training.  I squatted 70# for 5x5, then did some sets of resistance band pull ups, then some set of leg ups.

Tuesday - 6.8 @ 8:50 on the treadmill.  I woke up feeling very energized and well rested, so this run was fun.  I just listened to music for an hour and enjoyed the work on the treadmill.  I also did 20 minutes of weights, including a set of "Super Tens" for shoulders, some 30# bicep barbell curls, and an ab circuit.

Wednesday - an hour of free weights with my gym partner, Katherine.  Here is the workout:

Upright Row 50# 4x10
Barbell Row 40# 4x10
Deadlift 65# 1x5
Deadlift 115# 4x5 (this is a PR for me!)
Shoulder Super Tens, one round with 12.5#, then three rounds with 10#
Cable Step Ups 50#, 8 each side in 4 directions
Cable Compass Pulls 12#, 10 each side in 4 directions
Push ups, sit ups, and Ab Dolly work (ow)
Two chin ups, just for good measure
Then, Katherine took me outside to the Alpha Tower, where I tried unsuccessfully to climb a rope.

With the rope climbing, I managed to get about halfway up using lower body strength, got freaked out, ripped a callous off, and fell.  Very exciting. 

Thursday - 5.1 @ 8:42 on the treadmill.  Honestly, I don't remember doing this workout and Strava makes it look like I just ducked into the gym for 45 minutes.  Busy times.

Friday - 5 @ 9:06 in an exceptionally hilly part of town.  I dropped my son off, then drove out to run trails on Laurel Mountain.  When I got there, it was thundering and very windy.  A light rain started to fall and I decided the trail would be a bad idea.  I just ran around the trailhead and a nice suburb, and got in some good hill climbing.  It was a fun run.

Long run life. 

Saturday - 13.7 @ 9:13 with the track club.  It was still incredibly windy!  I mean, the type of wind that blows the spit out of your mouth and over your shoulder when you try to breathe!  It was nasty.  Also, so many people were traveling for the Boston Marathon and a big club event at the Destin, Florida marathon weekend, that the route wasn't really planned well.  This week's organizer just pulled up a few race routes on MapMyRun and stitched them together.  We climbed two of the worst hills in town, including the notorious Stone River Hill.  It wrecked my pace, but I didn't walk on it even once!  My heart rate data told me this was my toughest run since mid-December.  I'll take it. 

I'm guessing you can probably spot Stone River Hill in this profile.  The one that starts at mile 10 is another evil hill called "Coffee Hill" by locals, and I am pretty famous for going to great lengths to avoid it.  It is just such a grind!  And always comes at the end of the long run. 

Sunday - Total rest.  I looked at my training log and saw that I hadn't had a full day of rest since Easter (March 27).  Because of my husband's job, Sundays are often the toughest days.  It seems like his schedule is going to preclude my going to my beloved Ashtanga yoga class for most of the spring and summer, which makes me really sad.  I just took the day off and focused 

The end!  Have a great week, everyone! 

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Week of Workouts - April 11, 2016

Hello!  It's time for another update.  Life is very busy, and my plate is full with work stuff, mom stuff, and settling into our new neighborhood.  My husband just started a new job as well, and we are going to be a lot busier over the weekends now.

(Also, in a ridiculous turn of events we were in a small car accident on Wednesday.  No one was hurt, but our poor Subaru is going to need extensive body work.  Our insurance provided us with a replacement in the meantime and it's a MASSIVE Chevy Tahoe with Colorado plates.  RAWK.)

Without further ado...

Spring skies in the South.

Monday - 6.9 @ 8:36 (an hour on the treadmill).  I am trying to up my mileage again, without adding too much elevation initially.  Treadmill to the rescue!

Tuesday - 3.6 @ 8:09 (30 minutes on the treadmill, warming up for weights).  Then, 40 minutes of weights:

Resistance Band Pull Ups 3x5
Leg Press 90# 10x20 with :20 rest between each set
Back Squat 70# 5x5

On Tuesday evening, we noticed something odd in the corner of our balcony.

It's a family of mourning doves!  We've been having the best time watching them.

Wednesday - 70 minutes of lower body weights with my gym partner Katherine.  Exercises included:

Box Step Ups
Glute Press
Lying Hamstring Curl
Seated Hamstring Curl
BOSU Lunges
Cable Step Ups
Cable Squats
Plank Circuit
Weighted Russian Twists
Resistance Band Pull Ups
...and a whole lot of foam rolling

Also, forgive this shameless self-indulgence but I can do two REAL, FULL pull ups now and I feel like such a freakin' tank.  P.S. my new place has no good selfie spot, so I'm sad about that. 

Thursday - 5.5 @ 8:58 around my new neighborhood.  Hills, they are KILLING me.  This little run around the neighborhood had something like 650 feet of elevation, and Strava gave me a GAP (grade-adjusted pace) of 7:59.  No fair!  I also stumbled on a weird Strava segment that is a lap around a fountain in a corporate office park.  It is only a quarter mile, but the woman with the course record ran it at like a 6:05 pace.  I know I am going to kill myself trying to take it from her, haha. 

I've been experimenting with branched chain amino acids (BCAA's) in this homebrewed sludge I make with lemon juice, fructose syrup, and water.  They are supposed to prevent muscle breakdown and lactic acid buildup from workouts that cause muscle microtrauma, like running hills or lifting weights.  It might be placebo, but I definitely feel like I'm recovering faster lately.

Friday - 4 @ 9:03 on trails at Spain Park.  Just a mellow little trail run before work.

Very pleased with myself for getting a run in, and just generally very excited to be outdoors and feel healthy and refreshed. 

Saturday - 12.8 @ 8:25 for the Birmingham Track Club Saturday long run.  I somehow got mixed up in a faster crowd, so I ran this at a quicker pace than I intended.  I think the split for mile 3 was something like 7:32, which I should really be more careful to avoid.  I didn't feel winded or overexerted at any point, though, so I think it was a great run.  I just got really chatty with some of the faster folks and then they wouldn't let me drop back.  Everyone was like, "You are holding a conversation!  You don't need to slow down!"  I guess speed and fatigue really are a mental game, and I tend to sandbag and run out of steam when I'm not motivated.   

I spent a good chunk of the afternoon drinking fluids and reading while my dog made friends in the park. 

Then, I set myself up with a glass of white wine and made a roast beef dinner.  My son wanted Brussels sprouts and my husband wanted peas, so I just did both to get them to quit arguing.  In our house, Brussels sprouts are like matter how much I prepare, we always eat it all. 

Sunday - 90 minutes of Ashtanga, basically the standing series, some of the floor series, and some of the more heinous asanas from Series B.  It was fun.  I can definitely tell I am getting stronger.

Totals - 33 miles of running, two solid strength training sessions, and a yoga class. 

Have a great week, everyone!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

A Week of Workouts - April 4, 2016

Yes, I know this is yesterday's date.  I spent my free time yesterday reading a novel on my balcony, instead of updating this blog.  The weather was just too nice and I have no regrets. 


I feel like we are finally settling into the new place, and life is normalizing somewhat.  The workouts are more "normal" again, at least.  I even got out and explored the area immediately around home, and I am excited to run hills hills hills!

Monday - 5 @ 8:36 on the treadmill.  After, I did a short weights workout of just squats (70# 5x5) and bench (55# 5x5).  This was the day I retested my body composition, so that also took some time at the gym.

Tuesday - 75-minute vinyasa yoga class.  My first yoga in two weeks, for a series of silly reasons.  I'm glad I went back.

We replenished our groceries at Aldi. 

I got the bike rack set up, and even took a little spin downtown in the afternoon. 

Wednesday - 5 @ 9:07 around my new neighborhood.  First of all, HOLY HILLS.  Second, no sidewalks.  I ran on a mixture of shoulders (some nicer than others), little trails through wooded areas, office parks, and shopping centers.  I also tested out a little route to the gym, and I'm confident I can walk/run/bike to the gym easily.  Sweet.

80-degree weather is back, and I sort of can't believe it. 

Thursday - 90-minute weights workout.  I hit every major muscle group in this one workout, because I knew it was my only shot before running long on Saturday.  Spring break caused me to miss my Wednesday upper body day. 

Back Extension 10# plate 3x8
Barbell Row 45# 3x8
Lat Pulldown 70# 3x8
Bench Press 55# 3x8
Pull Ups with Resistance Band 3x3
Shoulder Super Tens 12.5# for 3 rounds
Barbell Bicep Curls 30# barbell 3x10
Skull Crushers 10# plate 4x25
Hip Abductor 100# 3x8
Hip Adductor 100# 3x8
Leg Press 70# 10x20
Kneeling Squat 70# 6x20

That last part was a "leg burnout" that my lifting partner uses.  There is only twenty seconds of rest between sets, and it is brutal.

Struggle selfie taken in the squat rack.  I was sort of just documenting all the bad choices that have led me to this point.  RIP legs. 

Friday - 6.7 @ 9:26 on the treadmill.  I just ran easy on the treadmill for an hour.  My legs were very heavy, and it was kind of a struggle.  I also did three sets of assisted pull ups.  I am on a mission to do at least three unassisted military style pull ups.  I'm close. 

Friday was also the first pizza night in our new apartment.  I think this oven and I are going to get along juuuuuust fiiiiiiine. 

Saturday - 10.4 @ 8:46 for the weekly long run.  The Birmingham Track Club was hosting a 15k race that I didn't feel trained for, so I finagled an invitation to run with another group called B.R.A.T.S.  They started at 5:30 am, and believe it or not this 8:45 group was the slowest pace group.  I sucked it up, and it was nice to run faster again. 

We also went to my cousin's wedding in the afternoon, and it was such a whirlwind trip that this is the only decent photo I have. 

Sunday - 90-minute Ashtanga yoga class. 

Totals - two yoga classes, two resistance sessions, a full-body heavy weights day, and about 30 miles of running over four days. 

Everyone have a nice week!