Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Week in Review (November 10 - November 16)

Tuesday (18,321 steps) - Ridiculously long warm up, shoulders, and cool down. After work we went to the gym and ran 3ish miles. I've been having a weird niggle in my right groin area (started around the time of Denver RnR). It feels fine when I'm running, but hurts a bit when I'm walking. Sure hope that goes away soon...
Wednesday ( steps) - HIIT/cardio warm up, total body HIIT and abs (which, to be fair, was WAY more HIIT than abs), and cool down. Overnight we got the first real snow of the season. Luckily, temperatures have been pretty warm, so it wasn't super icy. However, Colorado drivers cannot be trusted, so we left early for school/work. Maybe it was the premonition of snow, or maybe it was because of Veteran's Day, but traffic was extremely light and I actually got to work in about half the time as a normal work day. Went to the gym during lunch and ran a few miles since I planned on skipping the gym and run club. After we got home, we made cookies! Four dozen cookies to be exact. Peanut butter chocolate chip for the Friday the 13th party at Heather's and for A to take to school for her birthday.
Thursday ( steps) - Alternating dumbbell upper body video. I have done this one once before, and WOW, it is not easy! Did a 4 mile run during lunch because A and I were heading down to Runner's Roost for Ladies Night and the Nike fashion show! A great evening of light shopping, food and friends.
New Roost beanies!
When we got home there was MORE baking to do. This time we made the Oreo cheesecake cupcakes for A to take to her "real" birthday party on Saturday morning.
Friday ( steps) - One of the longer videos of this program, a lower body strength video. 3ish mile run on the treadmill during lunch.
A dressed up fancy for her last day of being 9
After work I picked up A and we headed up to Heather's house for a gathering of friends. Delicious food and great company.
Crazy eyes.
Saturday ( steps) - A'S TENTH BIRTHDAY!!! We had a FULL day planned. I gave A her presents first thing upon waking up. (Since she doesn't do Christmas with me, this is the closest thing to that for us). We enjoyed hot chocolate (for her) and coffee (for me) and tested out her new Wii U.

That thing is pretty high tech! We changed into our running clothes for a short birthday run to the lake.
Had a few minutes to get ready before going to IHOP for her birthday breakfast and then it was on to Skate City for her party.
Two hours of skating and then it was time for seeing Jurassic World with Jessa. As in previous years, A wanted to go to Country Buffet (yuck) for her birthday lunch. The rest of the evening was spent watching TV and playing Mario Kart. We ordered a pizza for a late night snack. We took selfies with the cats using her new "cat selfie kit". A said it was the best birthday ever. LOL.
Sunday ( steps) - Went to Target to get our grocery shopping done and after lunch we headed up to Boulder for birthday part 2. We met up with my older sister and my nephew Adam and went to the Valmont bike park for some mountain biking. All was going well until I (stupidly) decided to ride up a ramp. I didn't go up straight, panicked, braked and flew over the handle bars (off the 5' ramp) onto my head). Thankfully I didn't break anything, but holy crap, that hurt.
We left shortly afterwards and went to Sweet Cow for some delicious ice cream. THEN we went to the climbing gym. I didn't freak out as much this time and had 4 successful climbs. My arms/wrists just kind of gave out on the last one (not surprising since I for real almost died a few hours earlier on the bike).
A went with my sister and nephew to my parent's house for dinner. I did a quick 2 mile run to the lake and then picked up some Tokyo Joe's for dinner. After dinner I watched the Walking Dead (and I'm still really irritated that I don't know what's happening with Glenn).
Monday ( steps) - HIIT and lower body strength. I had to modify some of the moves because my wrists (left wrist especially) was hurting a bit. Hard to say if it was from the biking accident or the climbing. 3 miles on the treadmill during lunch as we had a blizzard warning and I wanted to go home and stay home. We picked up Tokyo Joe's on the way home (again). The snow started falling around 8 and I got the notification from my work around 10 pm that we would be having a two hour delayed start. (Hooray!)

  • 119,870 steps
  • 19.2 miles run
  • 60 minutes of cross training videos, plus about an hour on the mountain bike and an hour at the climbing gym
  • 97 minutes of strength/stretching.
Everything Else 
  • Winter is here. And I hate it. That's all.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Week in Review (November 3 - November 9)

Tuesday ( steps) - Upper body video. This was a video with NO equipment. So basically it was a billion different types of push ups. THIS WAS HARD. After work we went to the gym where I had one of the best runs I've had in ages. Got 5 miles in at a sub 11 pace, which for me, is really fast.
Wednesday ( steps) - HIIT Cardio. For the first time in ages I could NOT get through this video. The moves were EXTREMELY difficult and the intervals were 1 minute long, with random "drops" or "jumps" - depending on the exercise. I thought I was going to die. I will NEVER do this one again if I can help it. Goodness. A and I went to run club. It was cold, dark and rainy. And we were 20 minutes late because the highway was at a standstill. WOMP.
Thursday ( steps) - Upper body strength and yoga. This was a pretty decent workout for me. And a nice, welcome break from all the lower body and cardio. After work I ran 3ish miles at the gym - it was a pretty decent workout.
Friday ( steps) - Lower body strength. A really good video - lots of different types of reps. I actually added this one to my list of favorite videos. Grocery shopping so that we could make the oreo cheesecake for the Roost team party on Sunday.
Saturday ( steps) - Backcountry Wilderness half marathon.
After we left the race, we met up with Heather for delicious Thai food. Headed over to the Roost to pick up our bibs for The Great Candy Run, and then we went to Heather's house to decorate shirts for the race. Didn't get home until it was dark... early-ish to bed again.
Sunday ( steps) - Out the door by 8:15 to meet Heather at her house so we could carpool to the race. I haven't done a "big" 5k in a long time, and WOW, was this one big, crowded race. Heather is a GOTR coach and we had a bit of a hard time finding her school. After getting some pictures, we got into the bathroom line before getting in the corrals. A didn't want to start with us "old and slow" people, so she started in the third corral and we were in the last corral with her girls. We chatted and I tried to NOT walk. My legs were DEAD after running the half the day before. I was pretty pleased to end up finishing in just over 32 minutes. We found A and Dan at the finish, got a picture, and then headed back to her house to get ready for the Roost team party. We got to the Copper Kettle Brewery for the party at noon (oreo cheesecake in hand). Had a wonderful time hanging out with friends and teammates.

Left there around 4, got back to Heather's house, grabbed our stuff, and drove home so A could take a shower before going over to Jessa's for a "Walking Dead pizza party." The company and food was great, the episode was ok. Didn't get home until 9. What a long day.
Monday ( steps) - Almost turned off my alarm instead of getting up and doing my video. Cardio warm up, HIIT, lower body and cool down did not sound appealing, but it actually felt pretty good to get it done.


  • 146,609 steps
  • 24.6 miles run
  • 59 minutes of cross training (HIIT/cardio)
  • 79 minutes of strength/stretching
Everything Else 
  • The most exciting part of the week was finding out I am back on the Runners Roost racing team for another year! I had so much fun running and socializing with my teammates. I love being an ambassador for the best running store in Colorado and the sport of running. GO ROOST!!!

The Great Candy Run (Race Recap)

Sunday, November 8
Denver, CO
Weather - Sunny and warm

I decided to sign up to be a "Running Buddy" for Girls on the Run at the The Great Candy Run. I signed up to run with Heather's school. A and I left the house early enough to meet Heather at her house and ride over to Wash Park with her and Dan. Thankfully, since I didn't realize this was pretty much the biggest 5k ever.

Took us a bit to park, and then we walked over to where her girls were. Turns out they all had buddies to run with, so I would just be running with Heather and A.
Heather with A and her GOTR
Me, A and Heather
We headed to the bathrooms and then got into the corrals. A decided at the last minute that she didn't want to run with us because we are "too old and slow." I managed to get back into the last corral with Heather. We didn't end up crossing the start line for almost 20 minutes! Apparently there were about 6,000 people running, according to the race director.
Somewhere WAY up there is the starting line
I was actually a bit sore from running the trail half the day before (and the lower body video the day before THAT), so I was happy that Heather wanted to run "just for fun." Which is what we did. For ME, I actually pushed the pace a bit and actually ran fast (again, for me).

I couldn't believe how warm and sunny it was during the race, I actually got pretty hot, even though I was only wearing a skirt and tee. We had arranged with A and Dan to meet up at the bouncy castles at the finish, and we found each other without any issues.

My times are fairly unimpressive.

Garmin time - 32:07 (seriously, I haven't run this pace in a while)
Garmin distance - 3.15 miles
Garmin pace - 10:11 (practically sprinting)
Mile 1 - 10:44
Mile 2 - 10:00
Mile 3 - 9:55
Mile 3.15 - 9:29

What WAS really impressive was A's performance! She told me she knew she was running fast because she must have passed two thousand people. She could have!


  • Wow, this would have been the most fun race EVER for a first time 5k! There were almost as many spectators as there were runners! The course starts on the road and then runs parallel to Wash park, with a loop inside the park. It was estimated that there were over 3,000 spectators. What a boost for these girls!!
  • For a race this size it was extremely well organized. We picked up our packets the day before, but I could see exactly where I would have picked them up race day.
  • Plenty of bathrooms. Even with around 10,000 people out for the event we only waited maybe 10 minutes.
  • There was one aid station on the course with water and it was well stocked with friendly volunteers.
  • There was a nice long sleeve tech tee (A is wearing it in the start picture). 
  • And according to Heather, this was the first year the race gave out medals. And we all know how much I love medals.
  • This was a really fun race, I would probably run again if I had the chance to be a "real" running buddy!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Backcountry Wilderness Half Marathon (Race Recap)

Saturday, November 7
Highlands Ranch, CO
Half Marathon #141
Weather - chilly and windy at the start, perfect by the finish

I have run the Backcountry Wilderness half marathon two other times - once in 2014 and the first time, in 2012. I registered for this one early - wanting to get a race on the trails before the end of the year. The weather looked on/off sketchy, but we lucked out with blue sky and sunshine the morning of the race.

With a 9:00 start time, we didn't leave the house until about 7:15. We were supposed to meet Heather and Dan at the start, Heather and I were going to run and Dan was going to hang out with A.

We arrived just after 8:00 (I remembered the parking was a little sketchy), and we walked to pick up packets and use the bathroom. We were chatting with Phil at the Runners Roost tent when Heather called to say that she wasn't going to be able to come. A and I talked and I told her as long as we were there that we should see if they needed any volunteers. We met back up with Phil and he insisted that I should still raced and that A could hang out with him. After many assurances that he was perfectly fine with watching her, we hurried back to the car so I could get my bib and cycled through the bathroom line one more time.

I headed down to the start right as the last wave was starting. The goal was to not have it hurt. I have had so many races this season where everything hurt and I was miserable. I didn't want that! I started out slow and vowed to NOT look at my watch and obsess over pace. The first mile is one sidewalk and road, I walked a bit up the hill heading towards the trails. Then we got onto the dirt road and I was feeling really good. I was running steady and walking when I felt like I needed to but it wasn't because I was hurting.

I was slowly passing people and honestly, I was having fun. I was also getting REALLY HOT. It was in the upper 30's when the race started and I was cooking in my long sleeve top. After the second aid station, around mile 7, I was still feeling really great. I headed onto the single track section and ended up in the conga line - which honestly was probably a good thing. It helped me hold back where I might not have otherwise and I think I was running really strong.

For some reason there was someone dressed up as Chewbacca giving high fives around mile 8. The long climb around mile 9 was the slowest mile of the day gave me a chance to take off my long sleeve shirt, and for the first time ever, I think, ran in my sports bra. Grabbed some water at the last aid station, mile 11, and LOVED the last 2 miles downhill. Of course I remembered the nasty hill up to the finish, but I was PUMPED to see that my time was way faster than last year. (Like 12 minutes faster!)

Garmin time - 2:17:00
Garmin distance - 12.99 miles
Garmin pace - 11:19 (SO FAST)
Mile 1- 11:31
Mile 2 - 11:20
Mile 3 - 10:43
Mile 4 - 12:59
Mile 5 - 11:45
Mile 6 - 11:32
Mile 7 - 10:10
Mile 8 - 10:31
Mile 9 - 10:56
Mile 10 - 13:58
Mile 11 - 12:00
Mile 12 - 10:06
Mile 13 - 9:40

I grabbed a water and then met up with Phil, who said A had been perfectly fine and he had a great time hanging out with her. I had to run back to my car to get my ID for the Grist beer. A had a giant plate of pancakes from Flappin' Flapjacks, but I wasn't hungry.
Pancakes? What pancakes?


  • I will run this again. Funny how views change over time. I didn't enjoy myself the first year I ran this, and this year I definitely did.
  • Lots of swag - a cool coffee mug, long sleeve tech tee and a nice medal.
  • LOTS of "stuff" at the start/finish area. Grist Brewery was there with their delicious craft beer, and of course Flappin' Flapjacks is always a hit.
  • The parking is a bit of a headache so definitely allow more time than you think you need.
  • My only complaint is the lack of bathrooms at the start. Pretty sure they added more this year, bu the line still took a really long time to get through.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Week in Review (October 27 - November 2)

Tuesday (22,801 steps) - High/low cardio intervals. This was an interesting video - it was a "low" impact interval followed by a higher cardio level. Not terrible. After work went to the gym for 3ish miles. The remainder of the evening was spent making Halloween candy bark and red velvet brownies for my work bake sale.
Matchy Matchy!

Wednesday (16,707 steps) - Kickboxing/HIIT. Essentially a waste of time as no one except Daniel can actually accomplish all these moves in a way that makes sense. I fling/flang around a lot trying to do these moves. After work - RUN CLUB!! Very excited about the Halloween/pumpkin theme for this one. Ran around the school track with Lisa, Heather, Dan and A. I don't have a chance to have a lot of one on one conversations with Lisa, so that was nice. I didn't binge too much on the "pumpkin everything" - but had a few delicious pieces of "Nothing Bundt Cakes." Yum.
"Twinning is Winning"
Thursday (19,079 steps) - Cardio video. I already can't remember this video. I don't remember if I liked it or not, so it must not have been awful. After work I went with A to her "Boo at the School" where she played some carnival games and sampled chili. 3.5 miles at the gym afterwards.
A got some face/hand painting done
Friday (21,178 steps) - Warm up, kettle ball, cool down. I don't have a kettle bell so these were all done with a barbell. I really enjoy strength training, this was a nice change. After work we met up with Jessa and Jackson in Olde Town Arvada for a trick or treat street. We went to dinner at 3 Margaritas. Then A went over to Jessa's for a sleepover. I tried to suffer through a few episodes of American Horror Season - this season is terrible.
Saturday (35,764 steps) - Up early to go down to Stapleton to run with Runner's Edge. It was PERFECT running weather. I was wearing long sleeves, thinking I would get hot, but I never did. Ran a few miles with Carol and Sheila until Heather caught up. Ended up with 10 great miles. BEAUTIFUL fall colors!!

Me and Lisa in INKnBURN
Picked up A and then went to the mall to exchange the jeans I just bought her that didn't fit, bought her this year's holiday dress. Went to Sweet Tomatoes for lunch, went home and showered and then watched tv until it was time to go over to Jessa's for trick or treating. Ended up hanging out until about 9 - then finally home. LONG DAY.
Sunday (17,884) - Actually slept in until about 8. Which because of daylight savings meant I actually got like 10 hours of sleep. We went grocery shopping and then made omelettes and pancakes for breakfast. Almost the entire day was spent in front of the tv (I did laundry in between) - but I did go out for a short jog in the afternoon. I finally went west on the trail behind my house - can't wait to go out for longer next time.
Monday (16,850) - I do like that the sun is up earlier... I didn't have as much trouble getting out of bed. HIIT/Cardio - which wasn't actually too bad. There were short intervals of strength in between the HIIT intervals so it gave me some time to actually rest. Rushed home to meet the HVAC guy - who ended up fixing my furnace for free because of the missed appointment. I offered him money more than once because I felt bad, but he wouldn't take it. A and I went to Tokyo Joe's for dinner and we vegged on the couch. With heat.


  • 150,263 steps
  • 23.5 miles run
  • 83 minutes of cross training (HIIT/cardio)
  • 55 minutes of strength/stretching
Everything Else 
  • Heather and I had a "heart to heart" and we are going to defer CIM. Thankfully this was decided BEFORE my long run on Saturday, so I only ran 10 instead of 20. Phew.
  • A found out that she was voted into Student Council! She is super pumped about "making a difference" at her school. Very proud of this girl!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Week in Review (October 20 - October 26)

Tuesday (20,252 steps) - Yay for no HIIT again! Arms with some very short cardio intervals was a great way to start the day. With A feeling better we went to the gym, where I ran a super speedy (for me) and not so awful 3ish miles (in my new INKnBURN zombie shirt, which I love). With A finally hungry and craving food we went to Chili's for dinner, using the $20 gift certificates we had. 77 cents for dinners isn't bad. I was able to squeeze in this week's episode of the Walking Dead while A was on the phone with her dad and getting her homework done. Can I just say... WOW.
Wednesday (17,260 steps) - Core and cardio intervals. One would think that a 21 minute video that consists of a warm up, abs and a cool down would be easy. FALSE. I have NO abs and my muscles are very atrophied, so this was a hard one! A had to be at school early this morning to prepare for her awards ceremony. She got a "mathematician" award (because she is more than a year ahead of where she should be), was recognized for her participation in Arvada Harvest Festival (so she was one of the students who led the "Firebird Five" chant), AND she spoke with her Environmental Club about ways to save energy at the school. Whew.
Easy 3 mile jog in the basement while A finished up her homework and dinner was cooking.
Thursday (22,717 steps) - A blissfully short HIIT video followed by a quick butt and thigh video in the morning. 4 mile treadmill run after work that wasn't great, but wasn't terrible.
Friday (17,238 steps) - An upper body video that I really liked. Have no recollection of the rest of the day.
Saturday (25,688 steps) - Delicious breakfast at home with A (she makes a mean omelette). We went to one of her friend's soccer games before heading home for a small lunch before the Monster Dash.
A had invited her friend to spend the night, so we went home, showered, had a small dinner and then picked her friend up. Went to the store to buy something for them to bake. We attempted to watch Zombieland, but A was freaked out so we ended up watching Pitch Perfect instead. They went to bed pretty early.
Sunday (50,738 steps) - Up EARLY. Like just after 4 am so I could do my long run on the treadmill. I ran this RIDICULOUSLY slow. Therefore, it took a hundred hours to run my 18 miles. Especially once the girls woke up and needed to be entertained. I helped them make breakfast and while I finished up my run they watched Harry Potter and played monopoly.
Her mom picked her up, A and I had lunch, and then we met up with friends for the "Boo at the Zoo." Holy cow. It was so crowded. The kids were way more interested in candy than animals. It was a LONG day.

Went home, had a bowl of the turkey chili I had simmering in the crockpot. As I planned on having that for "snacks" during the week, I had "real" dinner at Tokyo Joes. A and I had a "Tiny House" marathon before bed. I love that show and think I want one someday, lol.
Monday (16,942 steps) - Unfortunately, this seems to be a HIIT/cardio week for videos. I really liked the video this morning though - it was actually much more strength training and just a few HIIT moves in between sets. I added this one as a favorite. Picked A up at Girl Scouts and then we headed to the mall to get her some new jeans. All her jeans from last year are now like 3 inches too short! Unfortunately we will have to go BACK to the mall, because the store I bought them at did not have a dressing room and after she tried them on at home they were too tight. Grrrr. WHY WOULD A KID'S CLOTHING STORE NOT HAVE A DRESSING ROOM???


  • 187,777 steps
  • 37.3 miles run
  • 23 minutes of cross training (HIIT/cardio)
  • 114 minutes of strength/stretching
Everything Else
  • So my furnace broke. Wheee!

Monster Dash 10k (Race Recap)

Saturday, October 24
Louisville, CO
Weather - sunny and warm
A's second 10k

Halloween races are my FAVORITE. Ariel, Heather, Dan and I were looking to find a fun race that we would be able to wear costumes at. We found the Monster Dash race up in Louisville with both a 5k and 10k option. We gave A the choice of what distance to run, and I was surprised that she picked the 10k.

One of the best parts about the race is that it was NOT a morning race! That meant we would actually be able to sleep in! And there were tons of other things at the race for an afternoon/evening event.

With the race starting at 3 pm, we headed up around 1:00 to find parking and our friends. We arrived around 1:30 and found a spot on a side street behind the finish line with minimal difficulty. We spent the next hour doing pre-race pictures, talking to people and wandering around.
Team Goblin!

The 5k and 10k lined up at the same time - right before the start we ran into our friend and teammate, Maureen, and we all headed out together for A's second 10k.

A and Dan had both chosen horrible costumes to run in. Full length black robes and masks and head coverings. It was a fairly warm day and the sun was shining. I had a feeling that A was going to get HOT in her costume, and I was right. Between the hot costume and the annoying "medallion" - there were plenty of things BESIDES running for her to complain about.

Right off the bat this was a better event than the race we had chosen last year. Most of it was on "trail" and it was a lot prettier. Plus, there wasn't a giant hill on the course. A did great the first few miles, struggled a bit the middle 2, and then had a strong few miles for the finish.

Mile 3
The most fun we had on the course was when Dan ran ahead and while us girls were gabbing further back, we managed to jump out from behind a tree - scaring us all nearly to death. It was a fun race though.

Thankfully, we were NOT at mile 13... I think this was around mile 4
My only complaint was that they started the kids races before we had a chance to finish... The last 10th of a mile we were trying to run into the finish line and there was a sea of flailing arms of hundreds of kids and their parents and strollers and dogs headed straight towards us. That was a bit of poor planning, as at least part of the road should have been coned off so that we could finish.

There was no "chip" timing for this race so we don't have an official finish time, but my Garmin definitely showed a HUGE 13 minute PR for A!

Garmin time - 1:20:05
Garmin distance - 6.3 miles
Garmin pace - 12:43
Mile 1 - 10:56
Mile 2 - 12:33
Mile 3 - 13:17
Mile 4 - 14:19
Mile 5 - 13:21
Mile 6 - 12:27
Mile 6.3 - 10:49

We collected our wine goblets (with a comment from the volunteer "did you guys even finish?") and then we wandered around looking for the food and beer.

The finisher party was at a restaurant a few blocks away, so we all walked over and got a seat on the patio so Maureen could have her dog sit with us. It was a great evening of good beer and good food (seriously, the restaurant made an amazing mac and cheese with green chilies and bacon and to die for brussel sprouts!).

I went for a quick walk to the car to move it closer to the restaurant and to get our hoodies, as it was getting chilly in the shade.

A great time!!


  • Course was very well marked. Mile markers at every mile - chalk in the dirt at an "confusing" intersection.
  • Plenty of aid stations with both water and Gatorade.
  • Most people wore costumes - which made this FUN.
  • The shirt was cute - with a vampire on it, but I didn't take one of course.
  • The race was "time" and yet there are no results that I can find. I guess I don't understand why you would bother timing if there are no results anywhere?
  • My only complaint, again, was the kids race starting before everyone had finished. We were not super slow by any means (I mean, not the fastest, but still) - they should have waited maybe another 15 minutes, or at least coned off a small section of the road.
  • Yay for the free beer! 
  • We had a great time and we will likely find another fun Halloween race for next year :)