WEEK TWO – is it over yet?

Week two did not start off the best and my motivation was minimal on Monday and Tuesday. I have a couple theories as to why; 1) The temperature increased by 15 degrees which makes a run seem longer and harder than usual.  I posted below an article that a friend posted on our running facebook page that actually made me feel better about my slower runs at the beginning of the week.  I did push through this as I refuse to train in a gym or on a treadmill, I do not feel like you get the same kind of training on a treadmill as you do on an open road. (Please remember I am no expert, this is just how I feel).

2)  Previously before I started Hal’s training method, I ran my longer runs on Friday or Saturday and my rest day was Sunday. I loved this because it always gave me one day off on the weekend to enjoy with my family, and there is something liberating about starting your weekend off with a long run early Saturday morning, and in the back of your mind you know you are off for the rest of the weekend. Hal’s training is a bit different and he has you resting on Friday after short runs Monday through Thursday, and then long runs Saturday and Sunday and getting right back to it on Monday. I feel like Monday came around and it was hard to jump right back into it after 10 miles on Sunday. So this week I am changing it up and going back to resting on Sunday. Hal says in his training that you can do this if you would like, the most important thing is to get the miles in.

3) I was lazy. Yep, I said it, we all go through it even though we do not like to admit it. I was not feeling like running, I was grumpy, I was not eating right, I was just lazy.  Here is what I do when this happens, I remember these feelings do NOT come from God. I surround myself with positive people, for example I went for a walk with a friend who is so spiritual and who I knew could push me back on track.  This goes back to my point that in order to get to any goal, you must have positive people surrounding yourself everyday.  There is not room for negativity and if someone is being negative towards you and your dreams they do not need to be apart of them.  No matter what your goals are, no matter who you are, you are special and everyone in your life should feel that way.  So I snapped out of it and I am feeling pretty good about the last few days of training.

I am done with my ranting and now moving on, The training program I have selected does not necessarily work in strength directly, he says there is simply no time in his instructions but if you want to work it in you can as long as it does not negatively affect your running. So this brought me to a dilemma that I am still unsure of the correct solution; Should I add in strength training? During my half I did not do a lot of other exercising except for running. I honestly am not very good at it, and I really do not enjoy it. (Again personal preference).  However, I have talked to so many runners who say if you want to improve, you have to do some sort of weight training in order to do so.   So for now this is my decision, I am going to a class 2 times a week in the morning at 5 a.m. that is dedicated to muscle strengthening. I have been to these classes in the past and enjoyed them and most of my running friends go as well. They do a lot of stations working all different muscle groups and they work you, HARD. After class I will also run, at least 3 miles, this week I ran 4. This is to not only still get in my required miles for the week, but also to continue to train my legs how to still run even when they are tired. Let’s face it, you will not run 26.2 miles without your legs yelling at you, at least I won’t.

Results from the first week of this, I am SO sore! my arms especially and it does make it hard to run, but it also feels really good to be sore and I can feel my body getting stronger. The runs after class are miserable! You feel like you are running with weights.  It I am sure will slow my speed down for the rest of the week for the first couple of weeks, however I think it will have a very positive effect on my running long term!

I also have had some issues getting used to my new body that seems to be forming just from these first 2 weeks of training as I am building muscle, more muscle, and more muscle. I stepped on the scale yesterday, BIG MISTAKE. I probably will not step on it again until it is done. I am gaining weight, my close are fitting tighter, but I also know it is all muscle. So this has been hard to train my mind to not worry about the food I have to stuff in my mouth every two hours to make sure I can make it through another 5 miles, but day by day it seems to be getting easier. My diet is staying steady around 2300 calories, and I am still researching everyday to make sure I am doing the right thing for me. The internet is a powerful source. The fun thing is getting to come up with creative healthy new meals! new obsession = Protein ice cream. Blend 2 tbsp PB 2 , 1 banana, 1 scoop of your favorite protein powder (mine is muscle gain by AdvoCare), about 1/4 cup of water, and some ice. Freeze over night. Let it thaw out for 10-15 minutes before eating and top with some almonds and dark chocolate chips, AMAZING!

PB2 & BANANA PROTEIN ICE CREAM WITH VEGAN CHOCOLATE CHIPS & RAW COCONUT SHREDS! YUMMMM!!!

Today is my first day of Tempo training. I will blog tomorrow about what in consists of and how it went! Thanks again for reading…

 

RUN ON!

Here is that article on outside temps!

http://www.over40runner.com/info/RunningInTheHeat.html

 

“THE HILLS” – In my training and in life!

I am reaching the end of my first week of training and overall I think it went well. Thursday I had such and awesome  run. It was hill training and the goal was to run 2.5 miles to a hill and then sprint the hill 3 times and run another 2.5.  I was dreading it because I thought my legs would be dead from the total 15 miles I had already ran that week, but actually I felt pretty good. Chad dropped me off exactly 2.5 miles from the hill and I ran down town, it was a beautiful evening, you could not ask for better weather. It was just beautiful and I felt calm. I decided not to look at my watch the entire run, but instead just run. I went back to how I use to run when I first started and instead of worrying about time, I turned my music up, and just glided. When I got to the hill the sun was setting and I just had such an awesome feeling, like GOD was right there with me to cheer me on. At one point I got to the top of the hill and just closed my eyes and thanked the Lord for this awesome moment he had given me. I time for me and Him to just be together. It was amazing. When I got down sprinting the hills I ran back downtown another 2.5 and man did I feel strong. This is why I would suggest hill training, after you spring up a hill a few times, it makes running a mile on flat ground that much easier. I promise it works. It has improved my time greatly since I started doing it.

As far as my calories I think I am on a better track. I have increased by about 300 calories (about 60 % protein and the rest good carbs). I got some information on the web on exactly how many calories you need when you are training from several websites just to kind of give me something to go by. One website I found that was helpful was http://running.about.com/od/nutritionforrunners.  There are TONS of sites out there though so my advice, and again I am no expert, is to just try things out and experiment a little to see what works best for you. It was hard the first couple of days to increase calories, because again my mind says diet diet diet, but it is getting easier. I feel like I am eating all the time, but at least I am choosing good foods; fruits, veggies, I eat lots of home made hummus with organic crackers or carrots and celery. I eat a lot of Greek Yoguart with fruit, nuts, blueberries, and homemade granola. I am going to make a lot of quinoa recipes next week so I will post the ones that I decide I like.   The only bread I eat is ezekial bread and I also eat whole wheat tortillas.  My body is not where I want it to be. My legs are, but of course my tummy is not and I wish I had better arms, but I am really not going to focus on that during training because I can’t. I will do another AdvoCare challenge right after the race and focus on those areas, but right now, I am eating to perform. I can feel my abs tightening every run, so I am curious to see what my body will be like after training is over. I did take before pics to compare we can all see what training for a marathon does for your body!

Now for the “hills” of my life, the crazy hills that I deal with everyday. A lot of people have emailed me about how I find time, and how do I make it work and I will let you in on a little secret…. It is not easy. Nothing ever worth doing seems to be easy, but in the end it makes it that much more rewarding when you accomplish your goal. My life is a hill, it has its ups and downs, but just like positive outcome I get when I actually run that hill, I also get something out good out of every up in my life and even every down. You learn from every experience. This week was tough, I put in about 5 more hours of running than I usually do, so of course things suffer. The house work suffers, the laundry suffers, and I constantly feel like there is not enough hours in the day. I got through it because I have an AMAZING hubby who supports me 100 percent in my decision to do this. We do this as a team. You have to have that in your life, a positive support system. People in your life that will tell you to get your butt out there and run because they know it makes you happy.

I also learn from the down side of the hill, I realize I cannot do this training in the evenings like I have been, it takes too much time away. I have to get my butt out of bed before my kids and hubby wake up so I do not take time away from them. I have to not be selfish and let my running effect the precious time we have together. So tomorrow morning I am getting up at 5 a.m. to run my 10 miles, and then I am going to enjoy the rest of the day with my kids and my hubby. This will not only make me happier, it will make my whole family happy. I have just got out of the habit of getting up early and I just need to get back into it! So this is my goal for next weeks training.

Finally, do not have FEAR. Fear is not put there by God, and can break you down and cause you to fail. Started this blog was hard and I still worry about judgement and ridicule but then I realize, who cares, I enjoy doing it, and we enjoy doing something and it brings positive things and people into our lives, than we should just do it. I have received so many emails and messages from some great people, and that brings such joy. Do not have fear about running, swimming, biking, whatever it is you want to do. Just do it. It is that simple. Take that next step! Do not overcomplicate life!

This is where I found the BEST hummus recipes, and also some easy granola recipe you can make with kids! They LOVE IT!

http://www.damyhealth.com/2011/03/the-9-best-hummus-recipes/

http://www.trueaimeducation.com/easy-healthy-homemade-granola-recipe

Thanks for reading everyone! RUN ON!

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FOOD AND ADVOCARE -These are a few of my favorite things!

Today has been emotional for so many reasons and I am so glad I pushed through and still ran my miles, usually when I get emotional I tend to just give up. I did not wake up early to run like I wanted to and I HATE when I do that.  I am sure you will find throughout my training this is a huge battle for me because I am not a morning person. It is a complete battle of the mind because once I am up, I love it.  When I do not wake up,  it throws my whole day off. As a result,  I have to take time away from the family in the evening to do it and that just makes me more upset with myself.  I also had a very “off” day with the kids and I was just exhausted by the time Chad got home, but no excuses, I got out there and ran my miles. I had a decent time, distance was 5 miles and I did it in 33 minutes 69 seconds with and average speed at 8.55 (goal was under 9 so I did it, lol barely).  I thought I had to run 7 miles, so I was jumping for joy when a looked on the training calendar and realized it was only 5!

In regards to my diet, I am still learning everyday on how to eat while training. I do tons and tons of research and of course you are always going to get different information in regards to carbs/protein ratio, what to eat before you run and when to eat, what to stay away from during training, and so on, so I pretty much just experiment and try to find out what works best for me.  Here is my biggest struggle… I do not eat enough. It is another battle of the mind. My mind, like many women minds I am sure, is trained to think eat less, lose weight, no carbs, eat small, etc…, however, this will not get you to a marathon, that is one thing I do know. I need to eat more to perform better, so it is something I am working on. I am going to try tomorrow to not only increase calories and (good) carb intake,  I will also try to keep a record of how many calories and carbs I intake so I can report and keep record throughout my training and hopefully figure out the right ratio for me. Today’s diet…

I started with 2 eggs scrambled using coconut oil, avocado, and strawberries.  For a snack about two hours later I had a AdvoCare protein bar that I made. I put the recipe below. I used a recipe a friend gave me and kind of added my own little twists to it. For lunch I had a salad which included; spinach, zucchini noodles, cucumbers, tomatoes, yellow peppers, red onion, chicken, and fat-free cottage cheese. Dressing was a little bit of olive oil, red wine vinegar, and a pack of stevia. For afternoon snack I had a piece of Ezekiel bread with PB2 and jelly, not sugar-free. A lot of athletes use sugar-free jelly I have noticed, but at this point I do not for a couple of reasons… 1) they are made with fake sugar which we all know have been proven to be not good for you in the long run. Do I think a little bit on a piece of toast is going to kill me, no, but I just like to stay away from them. 2) I read in a running blog that the sugar in the jelly can actually be beneficial for you and give you extra energy for your run. Also, If you have not tried PB2, you should! I tried every type of almond butter but just could not do it. This is my compromise, it is so GOOD! Right before my run I ate a half of a banana with peanut butter.

After running I had my AdvoCare recovery shake. My diet also suffers when I do not wake up early to run, because now it is 8:30 I have not eaten supper, so I am going to eat late which is not great for you, and I will eat light because nothing sounds good after running so I will suffer if I try to run in the morning… CRAZY CYCLE!

I will not blog my entire days meals every time, I just wanted to make a note that this diet is not working and I believe I need to increase calories.

AdvoCare products: I take several AdvoCare vitamin supplements throughout the day and if you want a list of those just email me. As far as running goes this is my routine.  About thirty minutes prior to running I mix a Spark (energy drink with lots of vitamins and my favorite flavors are grape and fruit punch), with a scoop of arginine extreme (Muscle support),  and water and take my 02 Gold (enhances the body’s use of oxygen),  pills with this.  Now if I am running in the evening I substitute the spark for a rehydrate because taking a spark in the evening can keep me up at night. If I am running more than 7 miles I usually run with rehydrate in my water bottles as well as a rehydrate gel packet. Several companies make these gels, just research, I have always been an AdvoCare product user so I trust their products. After my run I always have a Recovery Shake. AdvoCare has several muscle recovery options, such as a pill, but I always am craving something cold when I am done running, so I went the Shake route! I also will mix a big rehydrate if I am feeling

Again, this is personal preference, this is just what I have found to be most effective with my running routine! If you have any other questions about AdvoCare products please email me or go to my website at https://www.advocare.com/120429102

AdvoCare Protein bars:

1 cup of natural honey, tablespoon coconut oil, 1 cup chocolate protein (I used AdvoCare muscle gain powder), 1 1/2 cup oatmeal, 1 cup flax seed, 1/2 cup of chia seeds, 1/2 cup natural peanut butter, almond slices, dark chocolate chips, raisins

Heat honey and oil until it is dissolved down to a basic liquid mix with the rest of the ingredients. Push down into a 9X13 pan and refrigerate! SIMPLE AND EASY! the recipe I had called for vanilla protein powder and also butter instead of oil (I just substituted what I had.

Thanks for reading :)!

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THE RUNNING METHOD AND FIRST RUN

Today is day one of my official training session and how did I figure this out… RESEARCH! I asked several runners what training programs they have tried in the past and 90 percent of them suggested a Hal Higdon method. I also did a lot of research on which of his methods to actually do and I am going with Advanced 1. Now, I DO NOT consider myself an advanced runner, however I feel like I can handle it and I want to improve so I think this is a good way.  However, if I begin and start to feel a bit overwhelmed I will simply move programs. I am not going to worry about it… I am going to simply go for it! Chad will be on this same path for his half marathon. We will do it together. I am sure people would probably suggest a lighter program for me on my first full marathon. I also remember when people told me I could not work up to a half marathon in 2 months, and did I ever prove them wrong. I am going in with the same attitude… “I can do all things through HIM who strengthens me.” Do I suggest it, I do not know. But at the end I will let you know! Ha

First run was only three miles so I wanted to do it fast. I had to run it at the gym because of the rain… BOO! But we need the rain so I was good with it!  I ran it in a 8.40 pace average which is fast for me! When I run with a group of girls in the morning sometimes I feel slow and most times get a little discouraged, but then I remember where I started. Before my half marathon I thought a 9.50 pace was impossible. I ran my half at an 11.00 average pace, so honestly… I have come a LONG way! That is what I would tell anyone who is starting to run… always remember your improvements. They may be minor, you might have increased your distance by a half mile, but they are IMPROVEMENTS! This is what your focus should be on.

I purchased new running shoes over the weekend and I am not 100 percent certain on them. Previously I was having ankle issues until I was advised by a sales associate to buy a specific Asics and *poof*… no more ankle pain. I wanted to try Brooks though because I heard they were lighter, and they are; however instantly I have my ankle pain back so I do not think they are going to work, but I will give them a couple more tries.  Shoes are so important when you are planning to run. Make sure you do some research about your stride and which shoe matches your foot and the way you run. My suggestion would be to go to an actual running store and get fitted! It could save you from pain and serious injury! I learned this the hard way.

The run went well though, and I felt good. I have been off for several days after a lot of miles the last few months so my soreness has seamed to fade. I am excited to get back out on the open run tomorrow morning! Ready for some fresh air!

Thanks for reading!

 

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“THE BEGINNING” – Where it started and what are my goals! Why blog?

I will never forget it… I was sitting down after finally getting all my kids to sleep for their naps when I just began to cry hysterically, I was so exhausted and the day was not even half over and I just felt like instead of being 32 years old I was 90! I was 30 pounds over weight from baby number 3 and I felt as though there was no light at the end of the tunnel. I had been trying to lift weights and do some cardio here and there but I felt like I was getting nowhere, not to mention I did not enjoy lifting weights one bit.  Please do not take this to mean I have something against weight lifting, or I think it is a waste of time. I think it is excellent for you if you do it right and consistently, I was not doing either at the time. I do now work in weight lifting into my running routine which I am sure I will cover in another post!

At that point  of what I would call a breakdown, I knew something had to change. I had previously lost a lot of weight after baby number two and I began to ask myself how I accomplished this and the one thing that came to my mind… AdvoCare.  Now this blog is not dedicated to my life in AdvoCare, but It will be mentioned a lot throughout my blog because it is a big part of my life. It is a company that is dedicated to making people healthier and happier and it has done this for me twice in my life, so I am PROOF that it works. If you would like more information please email me. So it began, I started a 24-day challenge with AdvoCare and took a stance against my weight issue and my overall bad health and I never looked back!

One day during my challenge a group of girls asked me to go running with them. I knew that they were in WAY better shape than I was, I also knew that I probably would die, but I also knew that I wanted to make a lifestyle change and that would not happen if I did not get out of my comfort zone. I said yes to the challenge. That was the morning I realized my love for running. They took me a little over 3 miles and I huffed and puffed the whole way, but at the end of it I had this feeling, one I had not felt in a long time, a feeling of personal accomplishment!

Parenting is one of the most amazing things and I love being a mommy, but it is so easy to lose your personal “self” during the process. You are focused on other people all day every day.  Running gave me “me” back, and I began to not only feel like a mommy, but also a person again.  I started running more and more and begin to see not only a huge change in my body, but also a big change with my attitude. My husband noticed this huge change and was so happy to see the “Kim” he once knew. I smiled more, I laughed more, I enjoyed life more because I remembered what it was like to be a person.  I feel that running has made me a better wife, mother, and a better individual as a whole.  I have become closer to God as I have devoted my running to HIM. I wake up earlier and have more time for prayer because I have found this new energy. I can wake up at 5 a.m. to run, and still be awake at 8 p.m. to put the kids to bed! It has been so good for me and my family.

So here I am. I have run my first half marathon, slowly but I ran it. I have improved over the last 2 months and now it is time to start my official training and I have decided to blog about it for a couple of reasons:

1) I have gotten so many amazing people contacting me wanting to know how I got started, what my training strategies are, how I went from 1 mile to 13.1 miles and for many other reasons.  Truth is… I have no idea! I am not an expert AT ALL! I just did it. I didn’t do it fast, I didn’t run it in record time, but yes, I did it and now I want to help others do it too!   If I can accomplish this, than ANYONE CAN! So this time around I want to record every run and hopefully help others who feel like they have no idea what they are doing, feel confident enough to “just do it”! Whether you want to run 1 mile without stopping or run a full marathon, you can do it if you believe you can!

2) I want to one day show my kids this blog. I want them to know they can do anything they set their mind to and I hope this blog will inspire them in some way.

3) I think writing about things is therapeutic!  Even if no one reads it, I still can take comfort in just getting every bad and good run off my chest and file it away!

I promise one thing for sure… I will be completely honest. I will record as much as I can about every run along with diet information and things I find helpful. Remember, I am doing this on my own one day at a time and I am no expert. So I will fail from time to time, but I will run those 26.2 miles one way or another.

remember… you can “Do all things through Him”!