January Recap

I’ve decided that for 2016, I’m going to get back into doing monthly recaps. I think they really helped to keep me on track, and it’s nice to check in to see where I am once in awhile. Even if I am a few days into February already.

 

Miles this month: 94.5

Miles this year: 94.5

Favorite workout: Hill repeats on the treadmill

Toughest workout: First attempt at 15-16 miles

Races run: 0

Cross training: Abs + Lifting

 

Books read: See Me by Nicholas Sparks (37% Complete)

Places traveled: 0

 

January started out as a strong month. I was ready for a new year, and determined to start running on the right foot. I had a decent base going in thanks to some late races in 2015. Things were looking to be a 100+ mile month, until I was sidelined on the 24th. I didn’t quite reach my goal of at least 100 miles, but I typically don’t reach more than 50 miles in January, so this was a huge improvement.

I did a lot of running on the treadmill, and I can’t help but think that my hill repeats were my favorite workout. I felt strong during and after the workout, when I easily could have passed on doing any hill work at all. My toughest workout was my first attempt at a longer run. Everything went against me running that day and I only ended up with 3.5 miles. Mentally, I need to stress less about the workout and just let it happen.

I didn’t run any races, but I kept up with my ab work and lifting. I’m hoping to stick with it and see how it helps my training this year.

As for my goals of traveling more and reading more, well, I didn’t travel anywhere, but I am working on my first book of the year. It was a bit hard to get into in the beginning, but I’m hoping I can knock out the rest of it during an upcoming trip. Then on to the next book.

The month didn’t end too well, but it could have been a lot worse. At least we weren’t covered in snow and dealing with single digit temperatures all month, like last year. I’m hoping I can bounce back from injury next month and build my mileage up again. No races are on the schedule, but I do have a trip to look forward to!

How was your January? Suggestions on books to read?

 

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October & November Rewind

I didn’t quite get around to my October recap, so I decided to combine it with November. Both months went by quickly, and unfortunately I don’t have too much to show for.

October was a busy month, but it wasn’t all because of running. October was full of catching up on life post marathon, starting wedding planning, and getting back into a regular workout schedule. Let’s take a look at the numbers.

Miles run: 53

Races run: 1 (Wineglass Marathon)

Miles biked: 0

Favorite Workout: 10/8-Recovery Run

Books read: 0

Place traveled: Corning, New York

The biggest thing that happened in October was the marathon. I didn’t quite meet my goal time, but I still managed to PR by 21 minutes! Despite a tough race, I can proudly say I completed marathon number 2! It was an emotional event, and an exciting adventure, but I think I’m ready to put marathons on the shelf for a while.

Even though I only raced once this month, I was able to keep up some sort of fitness. I took some time off after the race, but tried to run a few times before setting up a better schedule. Now I’m back to running a semi normal amount and preparing myself for spring racing.

My favorite run of the month could easily be the marathon, but I also enjoyed my first run back after the race. The Wednesday after Wineglass I set up in my neighborhood for an unplanned run. I wanted to see how I felt and really just wanted to get my legs moving. Somehow I felt fantastic and pulled out sub 9:00 minute miles. It was one of the best runs I had all summer and it was just days after the marathon. These legs are something else.

I didn’t read any new books or try any new recipes, but I did catch up on the DVR and my magazine stack. Now that I have more free time, I’m hoping I’ll be able to catch up on my reading.

And here are November’s numbers…

Miles run: 41

Races run: 0

Miles biked: 0

Favorite Workout: All of them!

Books read: 0

Place traveled: 0

My running took a bit of a back seat, but I’m fine with it. I trained a lot this year, and I don’t want to be burnt out so I’m running when I want, how long I want. I also didn’t participate in any races this month. I had a few in the back of my mind, but I just wasn’t fully committed to them, which is perfectly fine.

Favorite run?

I finally tried a new recipe, since I have some extra free time. We made a tortilla soup that was fantastic if I do say so myself. I think we’ll be making this a few times this winter!

Like I said, these past two months don’t have too much to show for, but that’s ok. I’ve surpassed my mileage goal for the year, so anything now is just icing on the cake. As for my goals on reading and cooking…I’ll have a lot to catch up on if I want to meet them by the end of the month!

How was your October and November? What was the best thing that happened to you in the past two months?

 

September Rewind

One of my favorite months has come and gone, but before recapping the marathon, it’s time to look back at the past month.

Miles run: 89

Races run: 2 (River Run Half Marathon, SF Aloha Run 5k)

Miles biked: 0

Favorite Workout: 9/16 – 10×800 repeats

Books read: Is Everyone Hanging out Without Me?

Place traveled: San Francisco & Napa, California

This month’s mileage was lower than the previous months, but mostly because of taper. I definitely missed the challenge of hitting another 100 mile month, but by the end of the month, my legs felt fantastic. Hitting almost 90 miles was a stretch in the past, so it feels good that I was able to get it even while cutting back on mileage.

I ended up racing twice this month, one a half marathon, and the other a 5k. The River Run Half has always been a favorite of mine and I was excited to have a chance at it again. I ended up with a 2:01, and it was hard to believe, but it was my 20th half marathon! My other race was a 5k in San Francisco, and even though it wasn’t my best, it was great to race along the Golden Gate Bridge and change up the scenery of my normal races.

Despite spending half of the month in taper, I had a fantastic track workout, which turned into one of my favorite workouts. My final hard workout was my last set of 800 repeats, all 10 of them. I hit the splits exactly where I wanted them, and even finished the last one in 3:34, something I definitely didn’t expect.

September also brought a vacation, where I knocked out Mindy Kaling’s Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? during the flights, which was absolutely hilarious. We spent time in San Francisco and Napa, enjoying the sites, nature, wineries and more importantly, getting engaged! It was a wonderful trip, and I definitely recommend visiting them both.

So September ended up being a pretty great month, and it will be pretty hard to top. October brings the marathon, cooler weather, and picking out what races I’ll be running next!

How was your September? What big plans do you have for October?

July Rewind

July is already over and it’s hard to believe that summer is going so quickly! July was an extremely busy month that mostly consisted of working, running, eating and sleeping almost every single day. I stepped away from the blog this month some and didn’t have a Friday favorites or 365 photo recap, but honestly, I don’t think I would have had time. This month was a busy one, so let’s take a look at the numbers….

Miles run: 111

Races run: 4 (Twin Sizzler 5k/10k, Trail Monster 5k/15k)

Miles biked: 0

Favorite Workout: 7/26 – 18 Mile Long Run

Books read: The Runner’s High

Recipes: Shipwreck

July was full of running and had some great workouts. I hit my highest month of mileage yet, and nailed every long run I had scheduled for training. I didn’t run as many days or miles as I originally planned, but I scaled things back in the last week or so of July to keep some pains at bay and prevent injury.

I tackled 4 races this month, but had a different goal in mind. I attended races that had multiple races for the day and combined them to create my long run. The Twin Sizzler put me in my place and the Trail Monster gave me a deeper insight to technical single track. I loved the experience of both, but plan on sticking to one race per day in the future.

My favorite workout came at the end of the month with my 18 miler. I focused on a close to marathon pace for a majority of my run and ran those 18 miles in just over 3 hours. I never thought I could hold that pace for so long, or come in that close to three hours for 18 miles! This run was a huge confidence booster because last year I failed at my 18 miler.

I didn’t do so well on biking or reading this month, but as always I promise to think about it at least once next month, and maybe get back into it. Truthfully, I’m just too exhausted all the time to add anything else into my day.

August will be full of more miles, and hopefully no injuries. I also have one of my favorite half marathons coming up and I can’t wait to see how I do.

What was your favorite thing from July? What plans do you have for August?

March Rewind

March is finally over and we are on to my favorite month, April! I’m officially done with snow, and ready for sun and 70 degree temps. Actually I’ll be happy with anything over 40 degrees at this point. Let’s take a look back and see how the month went.

Miles run: 63

Races run: 3 (St. Malachi 5 Mile, Strongsville Super 5k, Spring TRAINing 10 Miler)

Miles biked: 0

Favorite Workout: 3/27- Hill Repeats

Books read: 0

Places traveled: 0

New recipes: 0

March was productive in running, and that’s about it. I didn’t travel, didn’t do much reading outside of magazines, and cooking was the same thing every week. But I did a lot of running and racing, and I’m so glad to see my numbers are up.

I ran more in March than I did in January and February (not combined) and I have no doubt that I’ll be able to reach 80 miles in April. High hopes here. I haven’t run that much in a month since last August. I can tell that the miles I’m putting in are paying off, my pace is quicker and my times are dropping. I’m also feeling a lot stronger than I thought I could.

I checked on my yearly mileage, and after the first three months I’m at 161 miles. With a goal of 600 for the year, I only have 439 miles left. If I keep up my mileage, I will easily beat that before the marathon this fall.

March was also full of racing. I ran three races, one with a friend, one as a training run, and one to test out my speedy legs. I enjoyed all of them and will most likely keep them on my race schedule for next year.

And my favorite workout from March was my hill repeats from last week. I’ve been craving hills for a while, but with the snow, conditions just haven’t been right. I finally got the chance and had a blast. I’m definitely looking forward to hill repeats this summer.

So there we go, March was pretty much just filled with running….and a ton of snow. I’m excited for April and will hopefully have a lot more miles, races and break out of cabin fever!

How was your month of March? Hill repeats, love them or hate them?

February Rewind

I’m thrilled that February is over. For being such a short month, it always seems to drag on. I’m not the biggest fan of March, but we’re one step closer to spring….well hopefully. February was a rough one, not only with the weather, but it took a beating on my body. I was in the final two weeks of my 5 week work trips and getting sick was something I was starting to grow accustom to. Let’s take a look at the numbers, and cross our fingers this is the last month of terribly cold weather and snow every day.

Miles run: 47

Races run: 1 (Frosty 5k)

Miles biked: 4 Miles

Favorite Workout: 2/19 Speed work- Mile Repeats

Books read: 1 (Thinking in New Boxes)

Places traveled: 2 (Dallas & St. Louis)

New recipes: 0

I was down 4 miles from January, but considering there were a few less days, I think I was just about on track. I didn’t actually start half marathon training until the 10th, so the week before was a little low on miles before diving in head first. I was also sick as a dog in Dallas, which meant every free moment, I spent sleeping instead of running. But I’m healthy now, so I’m hoping to get well beyond that mileage for March. My favorite workout (new point for the monthly recap) was my first speed day of the training cycle. I did two mile repeats, 8:12 and 8:02, and completed 4.5 miles in 39 minutes. This workout definitely gave me hopes of some fast races coming up!

I did get some miles in on the stationary bike, but no where near my goal. I can definitely see this number going up once the weather is nice and I can spend more time outside rather than trapped inside the gym. However, I have been using my Body Fusion class as cross training and it’s been great! Two months in and I can lift more than I expected and I’m finally getting toned in my arms and back.

I finished up my travels to Dallas, where it snowed, and to St. Louis for work. I wish I could have stayed in St. Louis longer to explore the city, but it gives me an excuse to come back to run someday. I also read “Thinking in New Boxes” for work, which was interesting, but I felt it was definitely a book I would have read in grad school. I’ll be back into my own books now, as soon as I can pull myself away from House of Cards.

So there we have it. February was spent running, traveling, being sick, and waiting for spring. I’m hoping to add at least 20 more miles to what I did in February, hopefully get some time on the bike and maybe dive into a few books.

What was your most exciting thing you did in February? Are you sick of winter as much as me?

January Rewind

The first month of 2014 is over and it went by so quickly! I spent most of the month traveling and avoiding some of the crazy weather we’ve had. I can’t help but think I’m starting this year on the right foot. Let’s take a look at the numbers.

Miles run: 51

Races run: 0

Miles biked: 0

Books read: 1 (Once a Runner)

Places traveled: 4 (Chicago, Vegas, Detroit, Toronto)

New recipes: 1, Ham & Bean Soup

My mileage jumped up pretty high this month. I haven’t run that many miles since the early fall. It felt great to get more miles in and I know it will only go up from here. I even focused on cross training with my Body Fusion class. Once I get back to a regular schedule I can add yoga in, and hopefully get back on the bike as well.

I finally finished Once a Runner and it was a great book. It will be perfect motivation to get my training schedule off on the right foot. I’ve got a book for work to read next, but I’m hoping to dive into more books I’ve had on my to-read list.

Like I mentioned before, I traveled a lot in January. I started off in Chicago, where we celebrated New Years. I followed that up with 4 days in Vegas and got to run the strip. The next week I traveled to Detroit, and spent the week after that in Toronto. Lots of miles and lots of days wondering which time zone and state I was in. At least it makes the winter go by quick!

I also made ham and bean soup and shared my recipe of spaghetti squash. February will bring a few trips, more miles and hopefully better weather!

What did you do in January? What are your goals for February?

 

November Rewind

November is over and it sure went by quick! This time of  year I can barely keep track of the days because life gets so busy. November was all about getting settled in our new home, attempting to get back into some sort of workout plan and gearing up for the holidays. I’ll keep this one short and sweet, no need to bore you with the details of how much I slacked off.

Miles run: 10

Miles biked: 2

Books read: Once a Runner…

Recipes: Spaghetti Squash & Cream Cheese Squares

My lack of working out is almost embarrassing. I did more than October, but not by much. I’ve enjoyed running outside after work, but I’ve kept it relatively short. I’m also struggling to get to the gym after work, mostly because it isn’t until at least 7:30-7:45 until I start working out and by the time I get home it’s almost 9. My evenings are limited, so spending most of my night at the gym isn’t always ideal.

However, I was productive in the kitchen this past month. I  finally made something with that spaghetti squash I’ve been thinking about for quite some time. And surprisingly, we loved it. I could see this  becoming a staple in our kitchen, and it’s a bonus that it’s healthy. I also tried cream cheese squares, a recipe I got from a co worker and it was a huge hit at Thanksgiving. Slowly I’m becoming the queen of the kitchen…

So November wasn’t as fit as I had originally hoped, but it’s a start. If anything I finally made an attempt at some recipes and can expand our weekly menu. My goals for December definitely include getting back into shape and creating more masterpieces in the kitchen!

How was your November? What spaghetti squash recipes have you tried?

 

September Rewind

Hello October! We’re in full force autumn and I couldn’t be happier! Fall is probably my favorite season, I love seeing the leaves change colors, the weather cools off for sweaters and every day smells like cross country. We had a really busy September and October doesn’t look like it’s going to slow down any time soon. Let’s take a look back at the past month.

Miles run: 19

Races run: 0

Miles biked: 0

Books read: Still reading Once A Runner…

Places traveled: Toronto, Canada

September was a pivotal month for running. As you may know, I was supposed to run the Akron Marathon. But after an injury that took me out for a few weeks, I just couldn’t get back my endurance or a feeling that I’d be 100 percent pain free on race day, so I dropped. The final decision came after I spent a few days in Canada working a trade show. After three straight days on my feet, my arch was begging me not to run. I couldn’t avoid the work trip, so I had no other choice but to play it safe.

I didn’t let it get me down too much, because I had a lot going on last month, including planning and putting on a surprise birthday party for my dad. My dad turned 60 this year, and what better way to celebrate than throwing a party. Everything worked out well and I could tell that he was definitely surprised. It took a lot of work and planning, but it was completely worth it.

We’ve had a few other things going on, but more about that will come up later in October. Right now I’m still figuring out what I’m going to do with my running for the rest of the year. Hopefully I’ll be back out there to run some races soon!

 

How was your September? Are you excited for fall?

 

August Rewind

August was a quick month, and I’m excited to say that I’m ready for fall. I’m ready for the cooler temperatures, the leaves changing and warm cups of coffee no matter what time of day. August definitely wasn’t perfect, but it wasn’t boring either. Let’s take a look back….

Miles run: 64

Races run: 1, Buehler’s Heart & Sole Half Marathon

Miles biked: 0

Books read: Once a Runner…made it to the 100’s!

Places traveled: 0

We might as well start with the elephant in the room. Those miles are no where near the 100 I had hoped for. I made it half way through the month and ended up with some foot pain. While this is still a mystery of how it happened over night, it’s something that is still bothering me. I cut back my miles drastically after running a half marathon on an injured foot. Outside of the pain, the race was great, but probably not the smartest thing I’ve done. I took a complete week off and attempted to get back into things. The pain isn’t gone, my endurance is dwindling, and well, this marathon I’m supposed to run is still a giant question. Along with some big races I had hoped to run afterward… (don’t bother checking the 2013 race schedule, they’re not up there)

As for my bike. It’s found a great home in the garage, and it has a close companion of my mountain bike that joined it this summer. Yoga also joined this group, I haven’t been to class in two months. Summer was busy and life happens. I’m hoping that I can get back into my yoga, because I actually miss it. And, well. I’ll still think about that bike.

And while we’re on the topic of the not so fun things of August, we might as well throw in the final closing of my favorite coffee shop. That’s right, Caribou Coffee is closing it’s doors on the Eastern side of the US. I knew this was coming for a while, but my very last store was shut down on September 1st. It may seem silly to be upset about a coffee shop closing, but I spent a lot of time there. From Friday nights in high school, to visits with friends while we were home from college, to studying for the GMAT and writing papers for my MBA. From friendships and first dates, to my own time to get away, Caribou held a big spot in my heart. I’m slowly opening up to Starbucks and Peet’s, but no one will ever make a Campfire Mocha like Caribou.

Until next time...

Until next time…

But enough of the Debbie downer things that occurred. I’m excited to share that there were good things that happened in August, like one of my closest friends getting married. My dear friend Elayna married her fiance after 9.5 years of dating. That’s a long time, you guys! It was a  beautiful day filled with so much love, and I couldn’t be more excited for them.

With the beautiful bride

With the beautiful bride

I have no idea what September will bring or what I’ll be able to run. I wish I was more excited that it’s marathon month, but time will show what’s in store, and hopefully I’ll be able to finish another 26.2 miles.

 

How was your August? Anything excited happen?