The End is Here 31/31

Okay that was a little grave… what I meant is that the end is here to Janathon 2015.  Today was it, it’s done, it’s over, another January comes to an end.  I’ve done it.  I’ve blogged every day about my training journey and you have read it whether you have wanted to or not (I’m not sure why but I’m thinking maybe you were thinking I was gonna say something inspirational or motivating to you and I hope I did).

Anyway, today my body screamed for a rest day.  Now that is not a very exciting way to end the month of January with a rest day but that is was I did.  This week has been filled with some sort of exercise each day so I listened and rested.  Then I spent the evening laughing and engaging in wonderful conversation with my family (Dave’s side).  We had dinner and then went to see The Mentalist – Jon Stetson for a local charity.  I would consider this a good ab workout.  Also I would also consider it a win because sometimes we need to really listen to our bodies when they are screaming for a rest (cause who listens when our body just hints at needing a rest).

So Janathon update is slim – Rest!

Thanks for reading along and I hope your month of January was successful.  Overall I completed 105.5 miles of runs and cross trained at least 2 days a week.  I would say it was a good month.  Thanks for hanging in there with me.

 

Almost done! 30/31

Almost done with Janathon and I’m doing my Janathon dance, how about you?  (This can count as exercise too, right?!)

Today is short and sweet:

Worked, went to the gym and now going to dinner with friends.

I love Fridays!!!

I hope you have a great weekend!

Janathon Update: 11.36 mile level 9 bike ride, random hills in 30 mins, core work with the ball and then stretching.

Pace run 29/31

As we approach the end of Janathon I am reminded that we have had to pace ourselves in order to make it to this point.  Fortunately today was a pace run to help remind me of how much I needed Janathon to get me started and keep me going through the month of January at a good pace.

So for today I headed to the gym again because that is what I do when we have so much snow on the road I can barely see over the snow embankments at intersections in my SUV.  Today’s run was a 6 mile run but considered a pace run because in the middle I had to keep the same pace for 3 miles and then drop off for the last mile and cool down.  It was a pretty good run.  Felt hard to get started but once I was warmed up, I became focused on getting it done (kinda like Janathon ;-))

Hope your month has gone well and you are probably as glad as I am to be almost done!

Janathon update:

6 mile run: 2 miles easy, 2 miles at 8:20 pace, 1 mile at 8:00 pace, 1 mile at 8:30 pace

Stretching and lots of fluids!

Rest Day/Snow Day 28/31

Today was a rest day and I have it on Wednesday because I usually work late… but here’s the thing my office was closed today while they finished the clean up the snow.  So that had me a little restless.  I felt like I needed to do something but still stay true to my training plan and do something not to strenuous.  I chose Yoga.  Not the sweat a ton, do incredibly weird poses and feel exhausted kind of yoga but this one that I found on runnersworld.com.  It was a great gentle pose and stretch program that I will probably try again in the future and it was called Essential Yoga (you can find it here).

Give it a try.  As for me, I’m done and now I can say I actually did something for Janathon.  🙂

Happy 28th day!  Almost done!

Life Balance

life-balanceAccording to a blog friend’s website (check her out here: Piper’s Run) today is mental health day in Canada.  As a therapist I think that is a great idea and wondering if the US has an actual day like this too.  I’m not sure because really every day is a mental health day for me especially during the work week.

On the blog,  Anna talked about the following questions and gave her personal reflections on them and asked others to do the same.  So here goes:

Question #1: Give your personal definition of life balance.

Having my priorities in the right place and getting the most out of each day.  My life balance includes eating good, exercising daily, spending quality time with my family and friends as well as spending some quality time with myself on a daily basis and if it all doesn’t happen, letting it go and trying again tomorrow.

Question #2: Do you sometimes struggle w/ life balance as a runner? (running taking over, annoying others/not running as much as you want).

Sometimes I find running takes over on the weekends especially when I have to get the long runs in.  My family has been accepting because they know that I am a better person if I take the time for myself.  Plus I feel like it helps my daughter understand that as a women we can get drawn in to doing so many things for others we put ourselves on the back burner and we really need to create better boundaries and make ourselves a priority.

Question #3:  Have you ever made a physical list of what your priorities actually are? Whether yes or no, what are the top 3?

I feel like a makes lists daily for what is the priority of the day.  I may not write them all down but they are always swirling in my head.  But my top three priorities will always be family, spiritual/mental health and physical health (although those two are intertwined so easily).  Everything else makes itself a priority after that, like what do I need to get done today?!

Question #4: Have you ever taken a few days & tracked your time & see how you actually use it? Work, sleep, TV, phone, family, running, etc 

Not really.  I think I have a pretty good idea because I do have a training log for my running and I can tell that I spend a lot of time in the exercise world and know that I usually spend 8 hours at work per day during the week as well as try to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night (cause I love my sleep).  So If I add that all up I would say that is about 18 or 19 hour accounted for some I’m assuming the rest is at home with family or running some errands. lifebalance

Question #5: If you feel like things are unbalanced, how do you hit reset? For some, it’s easy – for others, quite hard. Share your tips! 

I go for a run!  As a therapist I have days where hitting the reset button can be difficult.  If I’m in groups with clients, sometimes I will talk about having struggles with resetting (without getting to personal) and hear how they reset.  I find that helpful and they do to.  Also laughter is a great reset.  I try to find something funny whether it is a cartoon, funny show or just rethinking my thoughts and finding humor in my ways of thinking.  It is very helpful.

Question #6: Is improving our life balance as runners all about increasing positive things, decreasing negative things or both?

Yes, is that a good answer?!  I think life balance is realizing that positive things will happen and we need to enjoy them.  Negative things will happen and we need to learn from them.  But trying to decrease things means to me that we have total control over everything that comes into our life on a daily basis, which is so not true.  We do however have control over how we perceive it and what we take from it.  If we work on keeping ourselves in a positive state of mind, even when negative things come in, we will see them in a better more productive/positive light.

So I took the challenge about life balance, now it is your turn.  Give it a try.  Answer the questions and let me know about your life balance. 

Blizzard of 2015

So we got a little snow today.  Did not leave the house due to the travel ban but here are a few pics from our snow day.

IMG_0720

IMG_0724

Digging out my daughter's car

Digging out my daughter’s car

The snow pile before they plowed all the drives.  They are bringing in big trucks to cart it away before our next storm on Friday.

The snow pile before they plowed all the drives. They are bringing in big trucks to cart it away before our next storm on Friday.

Hanging out with the neighbors while we wait for the plow guy.  Benefit of living in a condo complex.  Only in New England do we stand outside and chat in a blizzard.

Hanging out with the neighbors while we wait for the plow guy. Benefit of living in a condo complex. Only in New England do we stand outside and chat in a blizzard.

Dave finding the back porch.  I knew it was there somewhere.

Dave finding the back porch. I knew it was there somewhere.

Good news is that my work has closed for tomorrow due to the over 30 inches of snow we received.  Looks like it will only be three day work week.  I’m okay with that!

Blizzard 2015 workout in pictures (27/31)

If you can’t make it to the gym, bring the gym to your home.  Here is how my Blizzard 2015 went in pictures:

Gym all set up for core and strength training.  Little snow outside that will add to the work out later when I have to shovel.

Gym all set up for core and strength training. Little snow outside that will add to the work out later when I have to shovel.

Getting stronger with this but still struggling to make it through 3 sets.

Getting stronger with this but still struggling to make it through 3 sets.

Then some crazy ball exercises: 3 sets of 15 each

A little harder than it looks especially by the third set of 15.

A little harder than it looks especially by the third set of 15.

Let's just say I cried during these and thought I was gonna die by the time I got to 15!

Let’s just say I cried during these and thought I was gonna die by the time I got to 15!  Oh and mine weren’t quite so high.  It’s not just holding this it’s rolling out and coming back to the pike position.

These were good.

These were good.

I was happy to get to these so I did 30 at each set because it seemed like resting after the pikes.

I was happy to get to these so I did 30 at each set because it seemed like resting after the pikes.

And then I finished up with yoga:

It was a great work out and because I didn’t have to worry about a time crunch due to not being able to go anywhere, I was able to relax and take my time.  Back to real life tomorrow and heading out to shovel eventually!

Happy 27th day of Janathon.

 

 

How I prepare for the Blizzard of 2015 (26/31)

blizzardHow I prepare for a Blizzard…Well after a shortened day at work, I head to the gym.  I know, I know I’m crazy.  I’ll get a work out shoveling some snow tomorrow, after all, they are predicting 24+ inches of snow.  But I’m trying to stay on my training plan it calls for speed work tomorrow but I won’t be able to leave the house due to the snow so why not get the run in today.  I can work on core tomorrow with my shovel!

So while most people are at the grocery store buying out the bread and milk and acting as if we will never be able to get out of our houses again, I had the gym to myself (well almost there are a few other diehards that were working out too).  Don’t get me wrong, I had a short list of a few things that I forgot to get this weekend at the store and Dave was nice enough to go before he left for work but quite honestly it was things we could live without if we needed to but it was nice to have.

Now time to relax at home and let it snow!!!!  Oh yeah and hope and pray we don’t lose power because that would be the biggest downfall of having a day off at the beginning of the week.

Janathon Update:

5 mile run with 3 mile sprints of 7:47 pace (pretty hard after my 20 miles yesterday but done! “You will not meet your goals with easy!”

Core work and leg work and stretching

Made it through but it hurt (25/31)

All I wanted to do was get my long run done outside today.  All I wanted to do was run and feel my feet hitting the pavement and enjoy the sunshine.  All I wanted to do was not go to the gym to run 20 miles.

Well guess what, what I wanted and what I did were not in alignment!

I spent the late morning and early afternoon with friends I had not seen in a while and had planned to get my run in around 2.  I was kind of on track but did have to start around 2:30.  The wind was crazy windy and they talked about the temps plunging this afternoon setting us up for a blizzard on Tuesday (that’s right about 2 feet of snow is what they are predicting for my area).  I drove through the area I wanted to run and they had not plowed the sidewalks like they usually do so I knew right away that this was gonna have to be inside.  😦

I did however make the best of it.  I actually used headphones and watched a college basketball game which was great.  I got to see a legendary coach win his 1000 game in a very close game, it was a great distraction to what I was doing.

Because treadmills at the gym only let you go 10 miles before they shut off I had to break my run up, which would make it easy to quit or for me made it easier to make it through.  I did 8 miles, then took a quick trip to the bathroom, then 8 more and got some more water, and then finally the last 4, each time resetting the machine and stretching just enough to get it started again.  I also added some hills in every once in a while, nothing real long but maybe a mile here and there just to spice things up a little and actually give the legs a break.

I was glad to get the run done but this one took all the motivation I could muster to make it through.  When I restarted the treadmill for the last 4 miles I had some energy and was telling myself, “you can do this”.  But by the time I got 1.5 miles in to the last 4 I was hurtin’.  I went back to my mantra from 5 days ago during my sprints:“you will not meet your goals with easy!”   It would be easy to quit and say, “Hey at least I’ve done 17.5 miles that counts right!”  It would have been easy to at any time in the next 2.5 miles to stop because believe me, my legs began to scream and I began to have a few cramps in my legs.  But I kept hydrating, kept pushing and saying to myself “you will not meet your goals with easy!”  So glad to finish and so glad to stretch out, roll my legs, soak in a tub, and put on warm clothes and call it done!

On another note, I guess winter has finally made it to my area so I might be resigned to the treadmill for these long runs for a while.  If it truly snows as much as they are predicting, it will be a little while til the streets are clear enough to run on them again.  Don’t get me wrong, we won’t be trapped because we have lots of snowplows and they clear the roads well but being on the roads with huge mounds of snow is not safe because drivers can’t see you very well.  So I’ll take my chances inside.

I would say my training is going well, 4 full weeks completed, only 17 more weeks until the marathon!  It will be here before I know it.

How is your Janathon going?  Last full week!  Did you set in goals during this long first month of the year?  Did you hit them or are you close?  Mine was to stay fulling engaged in my plan.  I have exercised on each day I have planned and really working on my core.  Thanks for a great first month Janathon!

IMG_0709