Tag: alex

It’s All Getting Real

It’s All Getting Real

Happy Friday and First Day of December! I can’t believe 2017 is almost at an end. The countdown to Germany has finally begun. We have dates set for movers and plane tickets booked. It’s finally feeling real – we are moving overseas soon!

The past week has been a series of errand-filled days with a healthy dose of stress. Good thing I have running to keep me sane. Alex and I got to run the Wheatland Turkey Trot 5k on Thanksgiving Day! This free event was sponsored by my Moms Run This TownΒ group to collect canned goods for the local food bank. A lot of families turned out for the race and it was a lot of fun! As always, I’ll take any chance I can get to run with my MRTT ladies!

Follow my friends on Instagram! Gail @spaceangel92 and Misty @disneyprincess_on_the_run!

Stroller running with my son Alex is more and more fun as he grows up. He sits up and looks around when he used to lay and chill. We talk about the blue sky, the cars, the trees, the crunchy leaves, going fast, going slow, and everything in between. We love to sing songs too! He is definitely the best running buddy I could ask for.

After the Turkey Trot, we spent the day watching the Macy’s parade, cooking, and relaxing! Once my husband Chris got home from work, we enjoyed our tasty meal. Turkey for them and vegan sides for us all to enjoy. Stuffing, Green Bean Casserole, Mashed Potatoes, and Mushroom Gravy. I used all Minimalist Baker recipes and they were so delicious you’d never suspect they were vegan!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce with Sliced Almonds given to us by a friend. Very tasty!

Some of you may remember I participated in a #RunChatHunt running scavenger hunt over the summer hosted by @TheRunChat. It was a blast finding new running routes to check things off the list and I get to do it again. @TheRunChat is hosting a holiday-themed #RunChatHunt and I’ve already been hard at work seeking out the new catalog of items! If you’re a runner and have a Twitter account, you should join in on the holiday fun! There’s a whole list of prizes you could win by participating!

Christmas lights, Wildlife (a small owl!), Star Wars decorations, Cup of Coffee – Check!

The adventures of being vegan continue and I’m still feeling great about it! (Wondering what vegan eating looks like? Read this post!) A family member of mine decided to try veganism after seeing me make the switch. After a week or two, they gave it up because they were worried about receiving enough of the proper nutrients. This made me dig deeper into making sure I was getting a good balance of nutrients myself which led me to this article. I was pleased to see that I eat most of the foods listed so I am, at the very least, on the right track. I’ve decided to up my superfood intake and plan my meals out to have a more well-rounded, mixed up diet day by day. That will be my dietary focus this week. I started today by making this quinoa superfood salad. Tasty and filling!

Quinoa Superfood Salad – missing pomegranate seeds because sadly, I couldn’t find any pomegranates.

This weekend I will be attending the Running With The Elves 5k in Marysville, CA! It’s the first time ever (and probably last since I’m moving away) that I’ll be returning to a race I’ve done before. I’ll be stroller-running but I believe I will still set a nice course PR! Here’s a photo of me crossing the finish line last year.

I’ve made literal great strides with running since this was snapped!

On December 16th, I’ll be running the YSTC River Run 5k in Yuba City and I’ll have cheerleaders! My in-laws will be visiting from Mississippi so they, my husband, and son will be there to watch me race!

On December 30th, I’ll be hosting a 5k! As a Move More Fitness Ambassador, I got the opportunity to host a meet-up for the MMF Jingle Dash Virtual 5k! Everyone is welcome to join us, including strollers, kids, and pets! If you’d like a bib and medal to commemorate this 5k, you can register here. Registration closes December 10th. This will be my farewell run before I fly out of California two days later. I hope you’ll join us to walk, run, and jingle into the new year! If you use Facebook, you can RSVP to the event through this link.

‘Tis the season for holiday races! What holiday-themed shenanigans will you be getting up to this month? Comment below and have a wonderful week!

Where Have I Been?

Where Have I Been?

Hello! I know I’ve been a stranger lately, but I’m back! After my (very first!) half marathon at the Urban Cow Half, I took a little break from blogging. (You can read about my race here!) I also took a break from running for almost a week so there really wasn’t much to blog about anyway. Then, the break continued because I honestly felt a little lost post-half. Having no direction after 8 weeks of training had me feeling unmotivated and wondering what to do next.

My first ever 13.1 sticker to show my half marathon pride!

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook then you know I finally got around to doing some onesie or twosie runs. I even threw some 4 mile runs in the mix. Overall, I feel good running regularly again! On the flip side, I’m still a little lost haha but it’s all good! So I’m gonna break down what I’ve been up to lately:

Moms Run This Town

My local MRTT chapter did a couple of special events this month and we had a lot of fun together! First, we got together for Love Your Body Day and ran in our sports bras to celebrate body positivity! This is something I’m really passionate about since choosing to love my body 2.5 years ago led to me losing over 100 pounds. (You can read about how my mindset changed here!) I love how empowered, strong, and beautiful these women are. We were all so happy to be a part of this event!

Loving our #beYOUtiful Momentum Wraps

Later in the month, we got together again for a Halloween run for the “Live Love Run” Virtual 4 Miler! Everyone dressed in costume – we had a cat, football player, storm trooper, Steampunk Ariel/Little Mermaid, and I was a ninja! I have to say…my costume choice wasn’t the smartest. It was really hard to breathe through that mask. It sure was fun though!

After our 4 mile run, we all enjoyed tasty treats! There was a whole spread with coffee, donuts, baked goods, bananas, and water. We got to hang out and chit chat and laugh and I love these ladies so much! I say it so much because it’s true. I can just pack them all up and take them to Germany, right? Our friend Misty (@disney_princess_on_the_run on Instagram!) is famous for her finish line jumps so we all knew we had to get a jump photo before the day was done. Behold, our glorious, gravity-defying leap!

Magnificent

Eating Vegan

I’ve been vegan for almost 9 weeks now! I really like it. I won’t say it’s not trying at times, especially when trying to eat out, but it’s pretty easy! I get a lot of questions about it which I enjoy. (You can read about how I came to be vegan in this post.) I’ve been photographing my meals because I’m constantly asked “what do you eat?!” and I’m going to make a post all about my new way of eating and hopefully show that vegan food is delicious and nutritious because it is!

Germany

After my half marathon, we basically dove into the deep end of Germany move preparations. For those who don’t know, my husband Chris got orders to Germany and we move in January. Time is flying! We had about a zillion appointments, passports, medical, dental, etc. Plus other preparations like buying entire winter wardrobes and overseas house-hunting. I’ve also been trying to learn German? That’s a question mark because I feel like I’m doing a terrible job haha. It’s hard! Plus, I’m using the Duolingo app which I like but it’s not very thorough. If anyone knows a better free/cheap app I can use…I’m all ears!

Shopping

Speaking of winter wardrobes, all of my warmer clothes from last year were too big. That is always like a 70:30 ratio of YAY:ugh. I don’t like having to spend the money on the clothes but obviously, being a healthier me is a great celebration! I had a little “Is this real life?” moment a couple weeks ago in the dressing room at Target because all the size Large tops I had grabbed were all too big. I had to go back and get Mediums! After being overweight since…forever, and previously wearing size 2/3XL shirts, this was like a dream. It still blows my mind! It was a nice non-scale victory!

One of my new medium tops in all its glory

Turning 31

I had my 31st birthday on November 1st! We celebrated a little early during Chris’ days off work. First, Chris baked me a vegan chocolate cake!

It was so yummy, we were all scarfing it down! My son Alex was asking for birthday cake all week long after that haha.

Later that evening, my friend Katharine was kind enough to come stay with Alex while Chris and I went for a night out. He took me to this great restaurant, Hook and Ladder, in Sacramento where they had their regular menu plus a whole vegan menu! I had a couple of tasty cocktails and the most amazing vegan mac and cheese!

It was a delicious dinner and then he took me to see the movie IT…just in time for Halloween! We never get to go to the movies (#parentlife) so it was soooo nice! He knocked it out of the park with my gift too. He got me these Jaybird bluetooth earbuds for running!

It’s great to have these because I was constantly pulling the cord of my old earbuds out of my phone or ears while I ran. He also got me a mobile charging pod for them. He said he was thinking of the future when I train for more distance races and I’m far from home for long runs. I thought that was so sweet! All in all, a fantastic birthday!

Training

It’s hard to find your groove again after being on a scheduled training plan but it’s been nice running little short runs again. I do want to be more scheduled about my workouts and incorporate strength training and speed work more often. I do best when I’m working toward a goal so I want to make a goal of a sub-30 minute 5k but it seems like I’m far away from that kind of time. Speed work would help me get there, it’s just a matter of committing and doing it.

Strength training would not only make me a better runner, but it would tone up my body. I keep hitting this wall with weight loss and I don’t think it could be nutrition because I am doing so well with food. I believe strength training would burn the excess fat and pull in the…for lack of a better word…flabbier parts of me. Women who have had a baby or anybody who has lost a considerable amount of weight knows what I’m talking about! I finally got motivated enough to do a strength workout this week and I’m trying to hammer out a schedule and get into a new routine!

Races

I have a few races coming up! Some shorties to keep me occupied until Germany weather allows me to train for another half. I might be doing the Hands of Hope Turkey Trot 5k but I have yet to hear back if it is a stroller-friendly race. I hope so! I have another Turkey Trot that I will definitely be running on Thanksgiving Day. It’s sponsored by my MRTT chapter and participants will bring non-perishable foods to donate! I will also be doing the Running with the Elves 5k in early December. It was my second ever 5k last year so I’m excited to run it again! Finally, I may be doing the Yuba Sutter Tri Club River Run 5k/10k. My in-laws will be in town so I’m not sure if I will have time to run it but I’m hoping I can! You can take the links I have here or see my Races page to see the events I’ll be running and hopefully join me!

So now you know I’m still here and still working on myself and setting goals and I hope you are too! Tell me what you’ve been up to in the comments below! Have a wonderful weekend!

My First Half Marathon!

My First Half Marathon!

I’M OFFICIALLY A HALF MARATHONER! I couldn’t be more happy or proud of this fact! After running 115 miles during 8 weeks of training, I ran my “victory lap” at the Urban Cow Half Marathon with 13.1 miles!

In last week’s post, I told you how I was having some serious hamstring problems in my right leg. My 8 mile long run was cut down to 3.5 and all my efforts to release the tightness were unsuccessful. Thankfully, a few days before the race, I tried a lying down hamstring stretch and felt it release! I was excited but still worried about it affecting my performance at the race. I continued doing this stretch a few times a day along with my usual rolling and stretching.

Because I was part of the Moms Run This Town HERD (team) I was invited to a special, early VIP packet pickup! On Thursday, I headed down to Fleet Feet Sacramento for this event and it was fun getting first access to all the special apparel and goodies created for this race! Plus, I got to bump into my friend Lisa who was there to pick up packets for almost our whole MRTT chapter!

Here we are with Howdy the cow!

After getting my bib packet and stocking up on gels and hydration powder, it was time to rest up for the race. On Saturday, I gathered everything together and laid out my Flat Christa.

Sunday morning finally came and although I was nervous, I was so ready and excited! My dad and I rode down to Sacramento together while my husband and son were going to meet us later.

Walking up to the event, the first thing we saw was the big She/Moms Run This Town tent! 12 Sacramento area chapters were represented at this race! We gathered for this awesome group photo.

I also found some ladies from my chapter and we all walked around sharing our excitement for the race.

Lisa, Kitty, Francine, and Gail – just a few members of my awesome running tribe!

We made our way to the start line but stayed aside while the first wave of the half marathon started. The first wave was for runners who could complete the race in less than 2 hours. While we waited for the second wave to line up, my friend Stephanie surprised me! She wasn’t intending on running this half but joined at the last minute. I was so happy to see her and feel her support!

Follow Stephanie on Instagram! @runstrongrun

Wave 1 finally cleared out and our wave lined up. My MRTT ladies all stood together and exchanged “you got this!” cheers and then they sounded the horn. It was go time!

Lisa and I ran together for the first 7 miles or so. We had so much fun chatting and checking out all there was to see! Costumes – like a man in a multi-color spiky wig and yellow legwarmers and the people running in full cow costumes! How did they not pass out from heat stroke in those things? Live bands jamming every few miles – we would dance, cheer and clap! Sights – like the famous yellow Tower Bridge and the Sacramento River!

My legs started to feel really tired around the 7 mile mark. I blame too much rest trying to avoid aggravating my hamstring before the race. I told Lisa to go on ahead because I was going to take an extra walking break. At that point, I honestly thought I’d rest a little and catch back up to her. Unfortunately, my legs never recovered and I started feeling a lot of pain in my feet, particularly on the soles. Lisa slowly crept further and further into the distance until I didn’t see her anymore.

But it was fun while it lasted!

I was kicking myself for sure but tried to remember everyone’s advice to me to just have fun at my first half. I did walk quite a bit more the last half of the race because my feet were in serious pain. Around mile 10, I had that thought that I think most runners get during a race like this, “Why did I do this to myself?” There were also some thoughts like “How do people do FULL marathons?!” haha! I just kept pushing on the best I could.

Howdy greeted me at mile 10!

During the final mile, “Bad Romance” by Lady Gaga came on which ignited a small burst of energy that had me running more. I came around a corner and was met by this arch with a great cow pun and the excitement of knowing I only had a half mile to go.

That last half mile was quick, intermittent spurts of running – walking – running – walking. My feet were screaming stop but my will to reach the finish line kept me moving! I finally got to where the end was in sight and I pushed harder. Lisa had already finished and she came back to run me in. I sprinted as hard as I could and raised my arms in victory as I crossed the finish line with a time of 2:52!

Words can’t properly describe the feeling of accomplishment that washed over me. I was handed my awesome cowbell medal and then looked for my family. My dad found me first, gave me a big hug, and I started crying. While we were hugging, I saw my husband pushing my son up in the stroller with a big smile on his face. My son gave me a big kiss and my husband gave me a hug and said “You did it!” Seeing my family proud of me felt so good!

That’s Alex’s proud face

I went to the beer garden to enjoy my complimentary Lagunitas beer but, sadly, I had forgotten my I.D. My dad then told me he’d buy me a margarita at lunch. Thanks Dad!

I could barely walk so I sat down to change into my OOFOS recovery sandals. I took off my shoes and found one of my Pro Compression socks had a small spot of blood on it. I was cracking up and making jokes about being a “real” runner now. I took my socks off and found 9 blisters on my feet. This was weird because I didn’t get blisters on any of my training runs and I wasn’t wearing anything different. Also, my foot pain started at the 7 mile mark so it wasn’t because I was running further than I ever had. It’s a mystery.

We slowly shuffled back to the car and went to the Mexican restaurant El Papagayo. I wanted to give them a shout out because they have a whole page of vegan options on their menu AND their food is really good! Maybe it was because I had just run 13.1 miles, but I’m pretty sure I had the best margarita I’ve ever had there!

After lunch, we headed home and I prepared my first ever ice bath. I was scared and for good reason. It was terrible haha! I dunked my lower half in the water, lasted one whole second, said NOPE and got out. It was wayyyyy too cold! So I swapped it out for an epsom salt bath instead. That was much more relaxing!

On race day, I thought “I’m not doing another half for a long time!” The next day, I was looking up half marathons in Germany haha! It’s seriously an addiction! I’m not sure when my next half will be since it will be cold and snowy over there but I’m looking forward to the next round of training and the fun journey that will come with it!

Run, Swim, Walk, Run

Run, Swim, Walk, Run

Last week, I blogged from beautiful Napa Valley! I made a goal to enjoy the rest of our vacation and keep running easy. It was a pretty simple mission and, boom, mission accomplished! Our getaway was the perfect mixture of romance for me and Chris and great family fun for Alex!

Life with a crazy, upside-down toddler!

On Thursday, I had a 3.5 mile run on my training schedule so I got up early and headed to Downtown Napa. (I’m training for my very first 13.1 at the Urban Cow Half Marathon!)

We had eaten at a restaurant in that part of town so I’d had a glimpse of the beautiful historic murals, river views, and interesting street art in that area. I just knew I had to run there!

After my run, we had some family fun in Sonoma and then headed home. We absolutely loved our vacation and I wish it could’ve lasted longer. We definitely need to go on family vacations more often!

On Friday, I had a 30 minute swim at 5 A.M. on the schedule. However, after getting less than 6 hours of sleep three nights in a row, I chose to sleep in. After some much needed rest, I did a half hour YouTube yoga session in my living room! With it being my first week back to running, I was needing the stretch anyway so it worked out.

On Saturday, it was time for my week 1 long run! I suited up and headed out the front door for 5 miles.

How can you not enjoy a run with this view?

I wanted negative splits and I wanted to take things slow as I have been, so I walked a good portion of the first mile to warm up. I continued to take walking breaks as needed throughout the remaining 4 miles. Somewhere between mile 2 and 3, I ate an energy gel and it helped get me in the groove to finish my run strong. I did achieve negative splits going from 13:37 in mile 1 to 11:31 for mile 5. As you can see, I’m definitely taking things nice and slow.

On Sunday, my beautiful mom flew in from Washington to stay with us for a couple of weeks! It’s the last time we’ll see her before we move to Germany later this year so it’s an extra special visit.

Alex and I picked her up in Sacramento and we spent some time in the city. We had lunch at a delicious taqueria and hit up my favorite running store, Fleet Feet Sac!

Alex only had eyes for his Grammy.

I grabbed a basket and loaded up with an assortment of new gels to try in all different flavors.

I’m excited to experiment with these as I train to see what I like for my half marathon! What’s your favorite gel brand or flavor?

On Monday, it was a 5 A.M. swim again and this time I got up and went. Fortunately, I can use one of our local pools for free! Unfortunately, it’s not the best quality. First of all, it was very dark.

Yes, that’s as lit up as it got. There were two lifeguards out there watching me so it wasn’t because somebody forgot to turn the lights on. There’s a second reason it’s not the best pool around. I had been thoroughly warned that because this is an outdoor pool, there would be little buggies from time to time but I was not expecting the little friend that came to visit. A mouse jumped in and wanted to swim some laps! I’m not much of a scaredy cat so I just moved out of the way and let the lifeguards scoop him up with a net. I guess if I want to keep swimming free, I have to accept I’m sharing the pool in the dark with some critters. I’m not exactly thrilled about it but it’ll do for the next 7 weeks.

When we were planning our visit, my mom told me that she wanted to exercise together because she is on a weight loss journey of her own. She has lost 45 pounds in the last year! (You can read about my weight loss journey here!) So after my swim on Monday, we went for a 2 mile walk.

On Tuesday, I headed out for a pretty 4 mile run. Along my route was a giant, beautiful sunflower field so of course I had to check it out πŸ™‚

I definitely struggled with this run. There was quite a bit of walking but I had an overall pace of 11:57 which isn’t terrible for me. I’m used to running very early when it’s cool outside. This run, however, didn’t start until about 9 A.M. so even though it was nice weather, it was a lot sunnier and warmer than what I’m used to. It was a hard run, but hey, I got it done!

I have still felt that feint, dull ache occasionally in my shin that, as I previously posted, has never gone away. It’s not bad yet, but I can tell it has slightly increased in discomfort since I started running again. I’m looking into a new pair of shoes which is a bummer since I just bought the shoes I have back in May. I’m looking at the Asics Gel Nimbus 18s because I’ve worn Asics in the past and they were on a list of shoes good for shin splints. I’d love to hear any opinions on shoes good for this!

This weekend, my mom and I will be participating in the Gone For a Run Run Now Wine Later Virtual 5k with my Moms Run This Town group! I’m really looking forward to doing this with her and it’s going to be a fun time with my MRTT ladies!

My goals for the week are to keep running easy, be extra diligent with stretching and foam rolling, make sure I get up for my 2 swim sessions, and I have my long run of 6 miles on Saturday! What are your goals for the week? Comment below! Have a great one!

10 Years

10 Years

This week was all about resting and planning my upcoming half marathon training! I can’t run but I can fantasize about running πŸ˜€ To prove how good I’ve been resting, here’s my weekly recap:

This is a photo I took on the way to Lake Tahoe! More about that coming up…

On Wednesday last week, my friend Stephanie (from runstrongrun.com!) invited Alex and I for a walk together.

We had a great 5 mile speed stroll and I loved catching up with her! We don’t get to do that very often. We were even twinning in our matching “I Run This State” shirts!

Later that day, my friend since 8th grade (AKA 17 years ago!) Michelle came to visit me! On Thursday, she kindly walked my final miles for July with me!

It felt great to finish my goal mileage for July!

I’m going to echo my posts from Facebook and Instagram a little bit right now because I think it’s important. I had to walk about half of these miles. As much as that sucks, I’m still so proud of them! I would rather have run them but guess what? It takes effort to get out of bed and get dressed and go walk too! A mile is a mile no matter how you get there. It’s better than not moving at all!

In last week’s post, I revealed my plan to walk out all my July miles as fast as possible and then rest. Once my miles were done, I started my 9 day rest period in style with a day trip to Lake Tahoe! Talk about relaxing πŸ™‚

This was my first time since childhood wearing a swimsuit in public. I had a split second of insecurity before walking down to the water where everyone could see but I chose to not care what anybody thought of my legs because they are amazing whether they look it or not! I’m telling you, loving your body is so much better than hating it. It’s so freeing!

Alex LOVED the beach!

I’ve been resting, icing my shin, and stretching a lot in between mom duties the rest of the week. I’ll be going on my first run in almost a month this Saturday at the Fit Approach EMPOWER Race 5k! After that, next Monday, my husband, my son, and I will be heading to Napa! Chris and I are celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary on August 13th so we planned a few days in beautiful wine country.

Our wedding day 10 years ago.

While in Napa, I’ll officially be starting my Urban Cow Half Marathon training!

There is a river trail right next to where we’re staying so I’m hoping that’s a good trail to run on! If not, there’s also a gym with treadmills (not as exciting of an idea…) Once I’m back home, I’m excited to get back to running with my Moms Run This Town ladies. I’m also nervously excited to do some cross training in the form of swimming! I’ve never swum as exercise but I love swimming so I’m excited πŸ™‚

What are your goals this week? I’m going on vacay so mine is to enjoy Napa! I’m very excited to start running again but also really nervous about these shin splints not really being gone. So aside from enjoying our vacation, I’ll be listening to my body and easing back into exercise and training. Have a wonderful week!

Walking the Walk

Walking the Walk

In last week’s post, I talked about the bane of my current existence, shin splints. I have been practicing active rest by walking instead of running.Β They are doing much much better but I still feel some aches here and there. I did finally break my streak after 48 days straight of running or walking at least 1 mile every day.

The streak was SO FUN while it lasted but I feel like I need the rest to heal completely. Plus, I’ll be taking rest days during my upcoming half marathon training so the streak couldn’t have lasted much longer. Here’s a rundown of my week:

I’m still going for my goal of 75 miles in the month of July so my strategy is to walk out the remaining miles ASAP and then rest until the Fit ApproachΒ EMPOWER Race 5k on August 5th.

Speaking of races, I changed my mind and signed up for the Urban Cow Half Marathon to be my first half!

I was previously going to do the Healdsburg Wine Country Half but decided Urban Cow overall works better for me. The biggest reason is that my dad will be in town from Colorado for my son’s birthday and I think it would be really special for him to be at my first half marathon! In fact, Urban Cow is on October 1st which is the day my son was born 2 years ago πŸ™‚

Look at this nugget!

This does give me a few weeks less to train but I think it will be fine. The race has a generous time limit so I could even walk it if I had to. Don’t worry, I will definitely not be walking my first half!

My goal this week is to REST. I have a friend visiting over the weekend who can walk my last few miles with me! After that I’ll just be lazing about and hopefully healing and ridding my leg of these shin splints for good! What are your goals for the week? Comment below!

Those Dreaded Shin Splints

Those Dreaded Shin Splints

Happy Hump Day!

I went from my BEST RUN EVER last week to taking it easy this week. Running 6.26 miles irritated some minor shin splints in my right leg that I had already been battling for a couple of weeks. Then, to add the cherry on top of the ouch sundae, I did 2 miles of speed work a few days later (read: running about as hard as I can!) My shin was hurting quite a bit more so I knew I had to take it easy this week. I even went to see my doctor just in case and she told me to rest. I’m currently trying active rest by walking and I can tell it’s working.

Run to your nearest doctor’s office for these couture shorts! Pay no mind to how pale my legs are…

One week ago today, I almost broke my streak. Knowing I needed to rest didn’t help, plus I’d had a busy day and put off my walk until the afternoon. At 7 P.M. it was do or die time because my son had to be in bed at 7:30 and I couldn’t leave the house after that because my husband was at work. FINE FINE – I kicked my butt in gear and went for a 1 mile walk. Alex was raring to go!

This is how the stroller works, right?

I’ve kept the streak alive walking or running at least 1 mile every day since June 1st (it started with Streaking with the COOL KIDS) and I’m on day 49! Here is a breakdown of my workouts this week:

Saturday was the Marysville Peach Festival 5k!

It was my first time pushing my son in the stroller in a race and it was really fun. You can read all about my experience in my Race Recap!

I’d say I’m not super thrilled to be walking because it’s kind of boring BUT it’s a lot better than laying on my back not being able to move! So…I’ll be positive and say I’m thankful for walking! Plus, I got stroller miles every single day this week! Alex loves going on these walks, eating snacks, snuggling a stuffed animal, and chatting about everything we see πŸ™‚

Could there be a cuter walking partner?

My goal this week is to focus on healing! I need these shin splints GONE before I start half marathon training on August 6th! When I first set that date, it seemed so far and now it’s only about 2 weeks away!

What are your goals for this week? Comment below! Have a wonderful, health-filled week!

Race Recap – Marysville Peach Festival 5k

Race Recap – Marysville Peach Festival 5k

The Marysville Peach Festival 5k is a small event benefiting the Feather River YMCA. The race is put on by my former gym Training Zone and is attached to the popular local Peach Festival held every summer. The night before the race, I picked up my bib packet and sorted through all the goodies.

Then it was time for my favorite part – Flat Christa πŸ™‚

I must say it was nice to be running in an event only 10 minutes away from my house for a change. I was able to “sleep in” until 5:30 A.M. when I usually have to be up at 4 for races. I got myself and everything ready to go and grabbed a few of these healthy oatmeal cupcakes I had made.

I was going to be racing with Alex in the stroller for the first time ever and I needed some breakfast to go. Best of all, Alex really liked them! He’s a somewhat picky eater so I call that a win. Here is a link to the recipe (side note: I skipped the chocolate chips and added cinnamon and chia seeds instead.)

We made the short drive over to Marysville, parked, and made our way to the Bok Kai Temple where everyone was meeting outside for the race. I found a couple of my Moms Run This Town friends there!

We caught up, talked about our goals for the race, and discussed how awesome Pro Compression socks are in both cuteness (that’s important, right?) and running benefits.

We headed up to the starting line and found another MRTT friend of ours!

We started chatting with her but we soon heard the announcer say that all walkers and runners with strollers had to head to the back of the pack. Off Alex and I went. I kept looking around through the crowd trying to find my friend Kelsey who was supposed to be at the race but I couldn’t find her. Before I knew it, the race was starting.

Alex wasn’t feeling the sun

I wish I would have ignored the instruction to stand in the back and stood in the middle like normal. When the race started, it was a slow shuffle like every race to get going. The problem was that the road was very narrow, only about 3 runners wide. I was unable to pass people in the grass like I normally would since I had the stroller. It took over half a mile to finally get my own space where I could run freely.

I had gone into this race knowing I was going to take it slowly. First of all, I was pushing the stroller. My 26 lb son + stroller + a bag full of toys and snacks = probably 40+ pounds. Second, it was hot! We didn’t start until 8 and the temperature was already pushing 90*F with little to no shade on the course. Third, hills. Eww hills. I’ve run this course once before so I knew there were a few steep ones. Fourth, I have a minor case of shin splints in my right leg that needs to heal before I start Half Marathon training. For all these reasons, I was in no way expecting to set a personal record.

Crossing the bridge

The course is slightly longer than a true 5k at 3.4 miles in length. We started on a levee, ran downhill past a park, uphill and across a bridge, down another levee, turned around and went back. Taking it slow was nice! I just enjoyed the views of the river, ran when I could, and walked when I couldn’t. The heat definitely got to me and I walked more than I thought I would. The hills were rough and I blame that mostly on the weight of the stroller. The final hill going back up to the first levee was the worst! I even took a picture to commemorate the horribleness haha. This photo does it zero justice…it looks so flat but I promise it was a big one!

Once I made it to the top, everything was great! Having zero pressure to achieve any sort of time was nice. I was pressing on and along came Kelsey running the other way! I had assumed she didn’t make it so I was happy to see that she had. I kept creeping along, crossed the finish line, and felt completely satisfied with my effort. There was no chip timer and I forgot to stop my Garmin when I finished so I have no idea what my time was and I’m totally fine with that. I was expecting a fun run and that’s exactly what I got!

I found my MRTT friends at the end and a couple of them had set some new PRs! I congratulated them and we got to talk for a bit while I waited for Kelsey to finish. I knew I wanted to say hello to her before I left. I don’t know what her time was, but it must have been fast because I feel like I wasn’t done long before she came speeding through the finish line!

After she got some water and caught her breath, she explained that her bib had been given to someone else so she had to go through a whole ordeal to get a new one and started the race 10 minutes late. In an unexpected twist, we got to spend the rest of the morning together enjoying the Peach Festival! She even treated me to a Sonoran Hot Dog which was SO GOOD.

SO. GOOD.

We meandered around for a couple of hours browsing the booths and sampling all the tasty treats. Alex enjoyed all the people, looking at toys, and playing with a balloon Kelsey got for him!

All in all, it was just a great day with a fun race and I loved having Alex with me. It was especially nice getting to see a lot of friendly faces! Plus you can’t beat devouring ALL the food after a hard run, right?

Best Run Ever!

Best Run Ever!

Happy Wednesday, friends!

Last week I wrote that one of my goals this week was to have a long run of 5.5 miles. On Saturday, my alarm rang at 3 A.M. and I got ready and hit the pavement.

This was the best run ever! I just. felt. good. I think I’ve found my happy pace at about 11:30 per mile for distance running. I listened to my body and if I started feeling too fatigued, I’d just slow down. I kept checking my Garmin when this would happen and noticed that when I stayed around 11:30, I felt like I could run forever. (You can read about all the reasons I LOVE my Garmin watch here!)

When I was feeling seriously amazing around the 3 mile mark, I decided to upgrade my run to a 10k. I did start to hit a wall at 6 miles because I didn’t eat an energy gel or any other mid-run fuel. Thankfully, I could see where I was parked from that point and that helped me push myself and finish strong. I felt so great for running that entire 6.26 miles without stopping!

I got to go on not one but two runs with my Moms Run This Town ladies this week! (Including Misty from DisneyPrincess_On_The_Run.Β Her first triathlon is this Saturday so go follow her on Instagram and wish her lots of luck!) On Thursday, I ran 3 of the 5 group miles but had to take off early to get home before my son woke up.

On Tuesday of this week, I did my first track run ever (unless you count middle school?) and learned about speed work from our chapter leader. It was hard work and I really didn’t enjoy it but I will be doing tempo runs in my upcoming half marathon training so it’s something I need to adapt to.

As usual, meeting with MRTT was great and I think running with these women really keeps me refreshed!

Here’s a complete rundown of my workouts this week:

I mentioned before that one of my goals was to run 5.5 miles this week. My other goal was to lose 1 pound. That didn’t happen. I won’t even say unfortunately. No, I’m not at my goal weight and I do want to keep losing and getting in better shape. However, I’ve never felt better! I’ve been on track with eating but my caloric intake has been higher due to my increased running mileage. I have peace of mind knowing that I’m being my healthiest self and the number on the scale isn’t my top priority right now.

My goal this week is to take it a little easy and have fun. I’ll be running in the Marysville Peach Festival 5k on Saturday! It will be my first race running with my son Alex in the stroller. Really wishing I had a BOB jogging stroller right now haha! That’s okay though. I plan on just taking it slow and enjoying the run. Plus I’m looking forward to at least 5 of my running friends being there! It’s just going to be a really fun event.

What are your goals this week? Comment Below! Have a good one!

Empowerment

Empowerment

Happy Tuesday, everybody! I usually post on Monday but I’m thinking Tuesdays will be better. It’s honestly just hard for me to take the time to write on Sundays after having a busy weekend. I need a day to just chill, who feels me?

Anyway! What a great week I’ve had! First of all, I started that clean eating plan. I stuck to it for 3 days before kind of stopping. I won’t say it failed because it definitely helped me stop snacking and got my head right with food again. I eat pretty clean as it is (when I’m on track) so I’m sort of doing a halfsies thing with the plan. I’m still making some of the recipes half the time and then eating like normal half the time. I didn’t like having to make complicated meals 3 times a day plus making separate food for my son and husband. I also couldn’t kick the caffeine. Those 3 days were the most tired I’ve ever felt in my life I think haha. I have cut the coffee down at least from 2-3 cups per day to 1-2. What’s my favorite saying? Small victories. So, maybe the plan didn’t work out but I’m feeling excellent! Plus, I got back down to my lowest weight of 197 pounds (after being up 3 pounds last week). Hopefully I’ll start losing again. πŸ™‚ For now, I’m still at a total loss of 108 pounds!

Next on the list of why my week has been great: I’ve been able to run consistently and pain-free!! This is huge for me because I was getting worried that I’d have to take a break. I was even nervous that I might not be able to train for my half marathon. Okay, I was getting overly paranoid haha. As a somewhat new runner, I think it’s understandable that I don’t really understand how injuries work. Thankfully, I followed the RICE method and did stretching and foam-rolling every day and the pain went away. In fact, I’m still doing this daily as a preventative measure.

Sometimes a certain someone doesn’t want to let me πŸ™‚

Here’s a breakdown of my runs this week:

I had lost a little stamina from having to walk for a week or so but I’ve been slowly building it back up. Yesterday, Monday, I ran 3.1 miles with my Moms Run This Town chapter and though I had to take a few walk breaks, I kept a 10:36 pace! That’s pretty fast for me so I was feeling really proud and strong after that run.

Have I mentioned that I love running with this group?!

Speaking of moms running this town, this mom (#motherrunner!) had to do a lot more stroller miles this week than normal. It’s harder than you would maybe think! It’s an extra 35+ pounds that you’re not used to and my pushing hand always starts to hurt after a couple of miles. I’m actually trying to sell my current stroller to afford a jogging stroller to hopefully get a little relief. That’s mom life, though, right? We do what we have to do! At the very least, my son LOVES riding in the stroller, enjoying the sights and sounds, and talking about everything he recognizes.

Another great thing this week (I know, there are a lot of them…) is I won the MRTT Scavenger Hunt!

Park bench, pine cone, a person on a cell phone, and me creeping on someone on a bike haha!

We had a tie breaker and I was feeling very competitive so I set out on the first day and got all 15 items which snagged me the win! I still don’t know what prize I’m getting but just the bragging rights are good enough for me. I know I keep saying it but man, that was just SUCH a fun challenge! I look forward to more in the future.

As opposed to the scavenger hunt, I was faced with an unexpected challenge this week. I did the scariest thing I’ve ever done. Maybe you know who Kelly Roberts is and maybe you don’t. I’m only just recently learning about her. I had already fallen in love with her message of body positivity when she announced Global #SportsBraSquad Day. On June 24, she empowered female runners to run in just a sports bra because “strength comes in all different shapes and sizes.” While I LOVE this message, I was still not planning on running in a sports bra. The thought of going down the street like that absolutely terrified me.

Throughout the day on Saturday, it seemed like every female runner I follow on Instagram was joining the #SportsBraSquad! So many AMAZING and beautiful stories of body positivity and self-love were popping up and I was so inspired. I was still too scared to do a full run sans shirt BUT I did find a nice area for a photo, lost the shirt, and ran around for a few minutes to get a picture.

I won’t lie, I was ready to put my shirt back on. I’m just more comfortable that way, but I’m proud that I took it off in the first place. It proved to me just how far I’ve come down the road to self-acceptance! Who knows, maybe by this time next year, I’ll have no problem doing it for real. Did you join the #SportsBraSquad?

While we’re on the subject of empowerment, I received an email with a discount code for the Fit Approach EMPOWER Race that I’ll be running in August.

This is the perfect opportunity for you to register and join me! I’ll be doing the 5k but they also have a 10k and half marathon at the event. The code (“SUMMER”) is only good for today so act fast!

My goal this week is to finish June strong by completing my streak for #streakingwiththeCOOLKIDS, hit my goal of 65 miles this month, and do a long run of 5+ miles one day. I’ve also been trying to plan a special run for Independence Day. I was going to do the We Run Free Because of the Brave Virtual 4 Miler but it was sold out when I went to register. Major bummer! I’ll have to think of something else. What are you planning to do to celebrate 4th of July? Have a wonderful week, stay hydrated in this summer heat, and I hope you hit some goals!

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