I can’t believe I went missing for almost two months! One day of not blogging so easily turns into two, which becomes a week, and then a month, and then… here we are.
This fall has definitely been over-the-top busy (in all good ways!), but even though I haven’t been here, I have certainly been running with Team Run to Remember. The New York City Marathon is only 17 days away! How did that happen?
That said, I’ve otherwise abandoned fitness. I’m making really bad excuses about how there aren’t enough hours in the day, but the truth is, I’m just lame.
So, I signed on for a 30 day yoga challenge for the month of November that I hope will get me going. And I want to sign up for a race. A small race (I’m thinking 10K but I could maybe be convinced to do a half marathon). Any ideas?
Glad to be back. Hope to catch you here again soon.
I waited until the very very very last minute to take the coaching test – it was due before midnight tonight! I was waiting because I was scared. I looked at the 100-question test for the first time on Monday (typical) and it was HARD! Even though it was open-book, open-internet, open-ask your friends who have already taken this test, some of the questions were so vague and some of the answers so similar that I was second-guessing myself like crazy. And if I didn’t get 80 out of the 100 questions right, I would have to take the whole CLASS over again. Not just the test!
But I guess I didn’t need to freak out after all. I passed! With an 89. I would have rather had an A but I’ll take what I can get :)
Now there’s just one small step left in the way of being “official” – I have to be certified in CPR. I’m taking the class next Thursday night. Almost there!
Kicked it off with 5 miles in Central Park with R2R and a special guest appearance by my friend Meredith.
Friends, food, and glorious sunshine on Friday and Saturday.
And went for my first Middletown run on Sunday! It was really beautiful. I wanted to do 3 miles but went 4.2 because I got a little lost. Better to do too much than not enough, I guess!
How was your weekend? Any adventures, in running or otherwise?
Sometimes things just go all wrong. Yesterday was that kind of day through and through, R2R practice included. What can I say? We do our best.
(What’s up with the lack of enthusiasm from the left side?! Come on, guys!)
The team had a speed workout, and on speed days, I don’t run with them – usually my job involves timing and taking pictures. Yesterday I was responsible for both but it turns out I only have the skillz to do one at a time, so I stuck with timing. But once all of the runners were out on the course, I did do a little running on my own – around in circles near Tavern on the Green for 10 minutes. Then, once I timed their first lap, I ran around for 5 minutes more. After I timed their second lap, I ran over to the East side…and ultimately back to the West side. Maybe I ran for 30 minutes all together? I have no idea how far I went. But it was my little something for the day. And a little something is quite an accomplishment on a day that’s all wrong.
My friend Melissa invited me to join her Sunday for some yoga classes as part of Anusara in the Apple, a two day celebration of the 14th anniversary of John Friend founding the Anusara method of yoga. Melissa is a yoga teacher in the Anusara tradition, but she assured me that I’d fit right in, even without much Anusara experience.
We signed up for two classes; the first was with Julie Dohrman and Emma Magenta, Melissa’s teacher from South Mountain Yoga in NJ, and the second was with Sianna Sherman and Ross Rayburn, who are apparently quite the stars on the Anusara scene (their class was sold out and totally packed!).
The first class was about darkness and light, and accepting that both are equally important parts of ourselves and our yoga practice. It was a really beautiful concept that reverberated both mentally and physically. The class was challenging, but also really playful and fun and I had a great time. It moved reasonably slowly, so I was able to keep up. This was the first class I’ve taken in a while that was not vinyasa based and honestly, it was kind of a relief to not have to package every posture inside a sun salutation. I felt good.
The second class was just kind of nuts. We were packed into the room like sardines and it started 30 minutes late (even though I’m often late myself, lateness like that totally makes my blood boil so I was already not in a good brain space when we began). I think both teachers kind of assumed that everyone in the room was a really experienced Anusara student and leapt right in to some pretty intense work. It was exhausting on its own, but combined with my soreness from the Warrior Dash and the 2 hour class we had just taken, I found myself slacking off just a bit. Ultimately, we decided to leave early (technically at the time when the class was originally supposed to end) so that Melissa could catch her bus back to NJ (and so I could pass out on the couch).
Still, being in these classes reminded me that no amount of videos and home practice can hold a candle to being in a class. I just have to make room for it somewhere! If only I was more like Martha and needed to sleep just four hours each night :)
I tried not to really learn anything about the Warrior Dash before we headed up to Windham Mountain on Saturday so that I wouldn’t get freaked out. But I did know that it’s an adventure race where participants run a 3.2 mile course that is littered with crazy obstacles on a mountsinside. Chuck and I were convinced to sign up for this one by our friends back in January (when August seemed so so far away!).
I should have known better than to worry about the obstacles; the real torture was running UP the mountain! We started with a little jog before quickly realizing that we would have to just walk/hike most of it. It was steep! There were only two obstacles on the way up, and those two were nothing compared to the hike itself.
On the transverse and on the way down, though, there was a lot more excitement. We went through a giant puddle/mini-lake where we had to climb over four logs that had been suspended in the middle (we were chest high in water so this was no small feat). That was followed by a balance beam, a 19 foot high rope wall (I was so scared at the top!) and the biggest slip and slide ever (among many other things that I have already managed to block out). We ended by leaping over two walls of fire and scurrying on our bellies through muddy water under barbed wire.
The truth is, it was totally awesome and I would definitely do it again! I mostly liked the obstacles, but my favorite part was the trail running in the woods between the obstacles. It was beautiful on the mountain. Plus, we got t-shirts, medals, and awesome Viking hats. And we had a lot of fun doing the whole course together.
I am a sore bruised mess now, but it was worth it.
Yesterday after my toast post my BFF told me that she does not approve of my breakfast edit! She said it’s not smart to eliminate something healthy (whole grain toast, almond butter) in favor unhealthy things (cheese, wine, ice cream). Can you imagine?
(There she is. From the back to protect her identity, of course.)
The truth is, I hadn’t thought of it that way at all (which makes me feel a little stupid). She’s right, obviously. But at the same time, I still think my breakfast is healthy even without the toast, and I can get that whole grain goodness later in the day – for example, yesterday for lunch I had a sandwich on that bread (with avocado, cucumber, and cheddar). And I really want treats! BFF thinks I can have the toast AND the treats, but sadly, my tush doesn’t agree.
So, what do you think? Is my substitution smart or stupid?
Did a little running yesterday, too.
Most of these crazy kids did SIX repeats on cat hill – pure torture. I’m sure they’re suffering today, but they’ll be stronger runners tomorrow. I am so impressed with them all. A few of us weren’t quite up for that so we took a spin around the loop instead. Equally worthwhile!
Anything fun this weekend? Chuck and I are headed up to Windham Mountain for Warrior Dash. If I make it back alive, I’ll tell you all about it on Monday.
In the interest of full disclosure, I feel the need to tell you that I have eliminated toast from my breakfast routine.
I don’t like giving things up, but I realized I was consuming more calories than I really should each day and I looked around a bit for places to snip. The toast was the obvious choice – 100 calories for the bread plus 100 calories (or more?!) of almond butter. (Don’t worry, I’m still getting my AB/protein fix by slathering it on my banana [wow, that sounds really dirty, but there is just no other way to say it].)
It seems like such a small change but I’m already feeling the difference. I’m just as full without toast but I don’t feel as weighed down. And now I can splurge more on the weekend, where splurging belongs (also somehow dirty?). The lesson here is that carefully picking and choosing where I get my calories can help me to eat what I want without worrying about growing out of my clothes.
For example, I love cheese. LOVE. But when I think about it, what I really REALLY love is having a fancy bit of cheese with a slice of baguette and maybe (ha) a glass of wine. So, I’m trying to save my cheese intake for moments like those, and not just automatically add cheese to every sandwich and veggie burger I eat. And it’s working for me, so far.
On another note, today is a PERFECT day for a run! Come on out and join us. We’re going to do the hill workout that we had scheduled for Tuesday when we were rained out. If you’ve never done hills, today is your lucky day! (Don’t be afraid.) 6:30 at the Columbus Circle entrance to Central Park.
A lot of runners fear/hate rest days (though I can’t say that’s ever been a problem for me!), but it turns out they’re really important. Rest days are when your body “works” – that is, prepares for your next run based on what it learned during your last run. Plus, it gives your body an opportunity to replenish the energy it used all week.
Ideally, you will take a rest day either before or after your long run, and, unless you are Kara Goucher, at least one other day during the week. What will happen if you don’t, you ask?
Burn out! Injuries! Exhaustion!
No one, especially a first time marathoner, needs to run every day. In fact, you will probably be a better runner, with all working parts, if you don’t. So, take a rest.
(And P.S. “rest” and “cross train” are not the same thing! Don’t forget that!)
Finally, it was under 80 degrees for a run. Some of us did five miles and some did six. Then we drank grape gatorade. It was a good night.
Summer Streets starts tomorrow! Park Avenue will be closed to vehicle traffic from the Brooklyn Bridge to 72nd Street and there will be tons of vendors and fun stuff along the way. You can go for a walk or a run and there are FREE bike and rollerblade rentals! Enjoy it.