Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Week in Review (August 18 - August 24)

Tuesday (14,888 steps) - Didn't go to the gym. Video of the day was cardio and abs and blissfully only 21 minutes long. I almost attempted the additional 8 minute abs video and realized I'm still way too weak for 50 second sets (womp).
Wednesday (19,700 steps) - Up early (barely) to do the video of the day - HIIT and cardio kickboxing. The HIIT was definitely challenging. Not sure how much the kickboxing does for me since my brain is very slow and I can't seem to get the moves right. Either way, I was done before 6:45, so that was nice. After work I went to run club - no pictures (?). An easy 2 miles. What was great about this run was that it was legitimately an EASY TWO MILES. I know it sounds dumb, but I've been struggling for so long that to have an "easy" feeling run (at a decent pace) is pretty fantastic.
Thursday (24,076 steps) - Cardio warm up, Six Pack Burn Out (Core) and yoga cool down. I keep saying it is shocking how weak I've gotten, and this workout proved it again. These core exercises that used to be "bearable" are now so incredibly challenging I can barely get through them. Gah. After work I ran a fairly decent 3.7 miles on the treadmill. It does, however, seem really daunting to ever get into double digit runs again. I don't know how I ever did it. After the gym A and I made a quick stop at Build a Bear for their 40% off sale. I could not resist Chewbacca (dressed as a Girl Scout?)
Friday (15,721 steps) - A new type of workout for me today - kettlebells. Well, and since I don't HAVE a kettlebell, it was really just doing my best with dumbbells. Warm up, kettlebell cardio, cool down and stretch. After work A and I took Jessa out to dinner at a new Mexican restaurant, Corona's, as a "thank you" for housing and feeding us. A bit of shopping and then home for some relaxing.
Saturday (20,536 steps) - Up fairly early because I had to take my car in to the shop. Due to the fact that I still don't have a physical driver's license (remember, I lost it during Ironman when we were volunteering?) I wasn't able to schedule a loaner. A and I walked down to the High Line Canal and went for a super sweaty 5k run before heading back to get the diagnostic results about my car.
Turns out to be nothing major (yay!) and thankfully they went ahead and gave me a loaner (since I have gotten them from them before).

The non "mini" Mini
We went to lunch at the new bakery/cafe Kneaders and I had a delicious salad.Spent some time shopping at Target and then I took A to the Wheat Ridge rec center for a few hours.
Sunday (26,852 steps) - Was sort of dreading getting up to run because 1). running is hard and 2). it's been really hot. I hit snooze and then finally got up to go run. I had hoped to go between 5 and 8 miles, depending on how it went. Pleasantly surprised that it wasn't a fiery inferno outside - temperatures were near perfect. The three miles out were not great, but the three miles back were.
Lounged around a bit in the morning before meeting up with a guy who was buying A's old bedroom furniture. That was quite an adventure as all our things are still in "storage." We went to lunch with Jessa at Sweet Tomatoes and then did a bit of shopping so she could get a new storm door. A and I went roller skating for a few hours.
Dinner at Hu Hot, which was SO DELICIOUS. I had never been there and I was very pleased with my experience - I will be back! A went to bed and Jessa and I watched the new "Fear the Walking Dead" - which was pretty darn good!
Monday (22,473 steps) - Hit snooze before getting up and doing HIIT cardio butt & thigh. I was pleasantly surprised with the HIIT not being that terrible. I finally (FINALLY) got the newest INKnBURN kit in the mail - and I LOVE IT. In case you missed it, I am HUGE fan of bright color. So of course I had to test out the capris at the gym. Ran a fairly decent 3.6 miles.

  • 144,246 steps (decent increase from last week)
  • 18.4 miles run (big increase from last week)
  • 101 minutes of cross training (other cardio/HIIT)
  • 28 minutes of strength/stretching
Everything Else
  • So I finished the first three weeks of the eight week Fitness Blender program I'm doing. And I honestly feel better and less weak. I've also been trying to eat better, but sadly, the scale is not moving in the right direction. I would care less about what the scale said if my my clothes were fitting fine, but they are not. Everything is tight and uncomfortable. Sigh.
  • I'll be going to New Mexico for the weekend to run the trail Ragnar at Angel Fire Resort! So excited that my teammate Heather had a spot open and I can go (and A is coming too because we are with a kid friendly group, hurray!)
  • Not much on the moving for now. Still in limbo. Tired of that.
  • Nothing else.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Week in Review (August 11 - August 17)

Tuesday (14,407 steps) - Opted to skip the run and only do my Fitness Blender video. I was really psyched about this one just being more of a strength workout - cardio warmup and upper body strength and abs.
Wednesday (16,668 steps) - Had pretty much the worst night sleep ever. I woke up at 2 am. After not being able to sleep I went ahead and did my video for the day, one I was DREADING. Doing HIIT at 3:30 in the morning when I was exhausted might have been a good thing. I had half a zucchini muffin, took a shower and finally fell back asleep around 5. I had plans on going to run club but I was just too exhausted after my lack of sleep. Instead, I went to bed early.
Thursday (19,279 steps) - A and I had gotten up to watch the meteor shower (and we were disappointed, we didn't see anything) so I didn't get a ton of sleep. However, since I had gone to bed early the night before, I felt so rested when I got up. Relieved for a non-cardio video - a new upper body video I hadn't done before.
Friday (16,677 steps) - Got up early to do a HIIT / Pilates video. It was not nearly as bad as I expected (less HIIT, more pilates). I had taken the day off from work so that A and I could go to Water World! I had not been there in many years. We went into the wave pools, on slides and on a ton of rides. It was hot and sunny, but we had a great time.
We stopped to get dinner at Sweet Tomatoes before heading home.
Saturday (18,937 steps) - Up at 6 am for "Run Happy" RnR Denver training run at the Roost. We met up with Heather and ran 3.5 miles. A did mostly ok but had not brought water and was pretty grumpy/thirsty.
Went back home to shower before heading down to the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs with Jessa and Jackson. It was the HOTTEST DAY EVER. Hiked/walked a few miles before heading back. LONG day. 
Spent the afternoon at the animal shelter looking at a kitty for Jessa and then a delicious pizza dinner.
Sunday (12,794 steps) - Slept in for the first time in ages. Went on a two mile run with Jackson and A before heading home to help Jessa clean the house.
After lunch we went back to the shelter and Jessa adopted the cutest black kitten! Much of the evening was spent getting everything ready for the first day of school.
Monday (24,826 steps) - Even though I had gone to bed early I still was barely able to drag myself out of bed to do the video of the day, a HIIT / Total body strength video. Again, it was luckily more strength than HIIT, so it wasn't the worst ever. And... I have a fourth grader?!?

Legit - the coolest backpack ever
After work/school we went to the gym. I hesitatingly say that I actually had a pretty great 4ish mile run.

  • 123,588 steps
  • 12.3 miles run (check ME out... lol)
  • 70 minutes + a hike for cross training
  • 86 minutes of strength/stretching
Everything Else:
  • Uh. Nothing.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Week in Review (August 4 - August 10)

Tuesday (21,058 steps) - Went to the gym after work. Thought maybe I would get a run in, and I did. But not a great one. 1.7 miles that felt a lot harder than it should have. Was there ever a time that running felt "easier"? I don't remember. FINALLY, I have decided to actually start doing my cross training and strength training again. Believe it or not, I'm not enjoying being tired and getting weaker. So I pulled up the 8 week training program I purchased (weeks ago? a month ago?) and actually got it done. And by got it done, I mean that I felt like I was dying and could not believe how much my fitness level has decreased. Cardio warm up, Belly Fat Burner HIIT and Yoga cool down.

The ever so fun "before" picture
Wednesday (17,487 steps) - I had plans to go to the gym after work but the gym daycare was full. A and I went and looked at a placed that we really liked, not sure if that will work out or not. Crossing fingers. Day two video! I had misread what this one said, I thought it was just some upper body weights. I found my weights in storage, loaded up the video and discovered the video DID have upper body, but also a LOT of cardio. Wheeee. Upper Body Strength and Cardio. Again, it's really ridiculous how out of shape I have become. Thirty minutes of exercise should not be so exhausting.
Thursday (20,788 steps) - I met A downtown in the flower garden for lunch. (Well, she ate, I didn't). Her Girl Scout troop went to the art museum and then spent some time drawing flowers.

Seriously, the biggest flower EVER.
A spent a little extra time with my parents because they had a cheese and chocolate party to go to in the late afternoon (seriously, their friends are so fun!) so I went for a short (yet horribly hard) run on Ralston Creek trail. 2ish miles that were so slow, yet felt like race pace. Womp. Then I did the video of the day - bodyweight cardio (supposedly a "recovery" workout - yet pretty dang difficult for me).

Sort of shaded, still "hot"
Friday (11,616 steps) - Up early to do my video before work. After reading the description I was dreading it a bit, but it was not as bad as I thought it would be. The hardest part of the butt and thigh video was the jump squats. Seriously, jumping is so hard. I left work early to pick up A so we could head out to Lake McConaughy to meet up with friends. We got out of town just before 5 and then promptly hit a terrible storm in eastern Colorado. Stopped at Pizza Hut for dinner and didn't arrive at our destination until 9:30.

Saturday (4,870 steps) - Up fairly early, but when you are with a ton of other people, you realize that you are not on the same schedule as everyone else. Had a big breakfast and then we headed to the lake. I mostly napped on the beach. A went out on the jet ski and for a boat ride. Mexican fiesta for dinner and then fireworks in the evening. I literally did NOTHING all day long.
A out on the jet ski
Fireworks are legal in Nebraska!
Sunday (8,154 steps) - Did not sleep nearly as well. A had a nightmare around 1 in the morning and I could not get back to sleep. Up early-ish again, another big breakfast and then another trip to the beach. I again spent my time lounging on the beach, doing nothing. It was pretty spectacular.
I bet I'm trying to crack my back in this picture
We had hoped to have dinner with everyone before heading back to Denver, but the restaurant was almost an hour in the opposite direction so we took a sandwich to eat on the road. Hit another storm in eastern Colorado and got home around 9 pm. Of course after unpacking and unwinding I didn't get into bed until close to midnight. I'm too old for this!!
Monday (19,913 steps) - Went to the gym and ran a whole 5k. It was actually not a terrible run. Legs a little tired but no cramping, so yay! Then I did my video for the day - a HIIT and lower body strength video that reminded me (again) just how out of shpae I am. Womp.
  • 103,886 steps
  • 6.9 miles run
  • 140 minutes of cross training
  • No strength (per se - I consider most of the videos I've done cross training)
Everything Else:
  • Not much to report. School starts in a week and for the first time, A is not really looking forward to going back. I don't know if that's just because she is nervous for her new teacher, but either way, it's weird.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Week in Review (July 28 - August 3)

Tuesday (21,647 steps) - I did a LEGIT hill run on the treadmill. Of course there was walking on some of the inclines. Because I'm not crazy (nor in shape) to run at 7% incline right now. I did my best to at least slow jog though.
Wednesday (17,408) - Run club! Well, minus the running. Heather is still injured so we just walked around the block and socialized. Isn't that half the fun?
Thursday (18,229 steps) - I had briefly planned on going to the gym. Then decided not to and had a complain-fest with my lovely friend Jessa. In house news, I did NOT close in the morning like I was supposed to. However, miracle of miracles occurred and I got a call at 6 pm that the buyer was able to figure out financing and we would be closing on Friday!
Friday (20,746 steps) - I went to work early because I left early for... CLOSING ON THE SALE OF THE HOUSE?! Immediately after I picked up A and we headed down to Highlands Ranch for volunteering at Chase the Moon. I was a bit bummed to not be running this year, but we had a great time being course marshals.
Our shift was from 5:00 to 10:00. We headed down to the start/finish and spent a few mintues chatting with Heather, Phil and Clark. Then I had to drive A over to my parents house since I was racing in the morning. I did not drop her off until after 11. After getting all my gear ready it was after 11:30 before I went to sleep.
Saturday (41,583 steps) - Up at 3:37 am to drive to Estes Park to run the Rocky Mountain half marathon.
On my drive down I stopped in Boulder to pick up my limited edition Newtons. They might be a little "over the top" with Colorado pride, but these are so cool!!
I picked up A, quick shower, and then we went to see Pitch Perfect 2 again (at the cheapo movie theater). Dinner with my parents and then early to bed since I pretty much had not slept at all.
Sunday (13,349 steps) - We went to breakfast at IHOP and then I took A to the skating rink. She is trying to graduate from skates to rollerblades. She was having issues learning to stop as the blades don't have brakes. Hoping SHE doesn't break.
Drove up to Boulder to volunteer at Ironman Boulder! Randomly ran into Heather and Dan (go figure, just outside the Newton store) and went to Cheesecake Factory for a pick-me-up. A had the Godiva and had Key Lime. YUM.
We were at the same aid station that I volunteered at last year on the run course. Volunteering was fun like always.

View from our volunteer posts
My older sister randomly showed up and volunteered with us until it was time to go watch her friend finish. We made plans to meet up at the finish line to get some food. And then, I pulled my phone out and realized I LOST MY DRIVER'S LICENSE. Of course I did. At the most crowded event in Boulder. So after we got done A and I wandered around Ironman Village looking for a lost and found. After speaking with the Boulder police and numerous volunteers, I was told there is NO centralized lost and found and to just keep calling and hope that someone turned it in. Arg. Met up with my sister and we went to Southern Sun for dinner - grilled cheese with bacon. In bed late AGAIN, after 11.
Monday (16,939) - My dad brought A down to my work because we were going to the Rockies game with Heather! We had dinner in the clubhouse and seats right behind home plate. A had a BLAST, and I was surprised she wanted to stay for the entire game.
Can you see A just to the right of the score board? We were on tv all night long
Me, A and Heather
Since we stayed until the very end, yet ANOTHER late night. (I'm too old for this).

  • 149,901 steps
  • 16.4 miles run
  • No cross training
  • No strength/stretching
Everything Else:
  • Obviously the good news is that the sale of the house is finalized. The bad news is that I'm essentially homeless right now. Lots of things in the works but problem after problem has ensured I'll be sleeping in Jessa's spare room for at least the rest of the month.
  • Nothing else right now.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Rocky Mountain Half Marathon (Race Recap)

Saturday, August 1
Estes Park, CO
Half Marathon #135
Colorado Half # 68
Weather - Perfect
This race was selected because it was planned around the 100th anniversary of Rocky Mountain National Park. Now, the Rocky Mountain half did not take place within the park, but it was still a gorgeous race.
I had to get up at the obscene hour of 3:37 for this race. And that was only allowing about 5 minutes to get dressed and leave the house and a 4 minutes stop at 7-11 for coffee for the drive up. The drive to Estes Park is pretty long - about an hour and a half, and the race began at 6:00. So I was driving on the windy backroads in pitch blackness. Obviously there was not much traffic, and the people that WERE on the road were headed the same place I was. I parked the car at about 5:15, just in time to walk the third of a mile or so to the start line to get my bib. When I picked that up, I was surprised to hear that this was a cupless race (I mean, I'm sure the informational email said that, I just don't read them anymore. My bad.). Luckily, I was given a hydrapouch. Then I asked the volunteer about whether they were enforcing the fee in the lot I parked in, and he thought they probably were. SO. I used the bathroom, walked BACK to the car, then drove about 2 miles to the other side of the Fairgrounds and then walked BACK to the start area. Made it with about 2 minutes to spare.
This may have been the longest I have gone without running a half since I first started running them in 2010 (close to 2 months). I also have not been running. So... I optimistically lined up with the 2:20 corral. (LOLOLOLOL). The race started on time and off we went. It was a bit brisk, but honestly, for August, I could not have asked for better conditions. And the 6:00 start time was SO appreciated.
We headed out on the road and we were immediately hit with the first of MANY hills. I didn't walk up that first one. YAY! Managed to run all the way to the first aid station without walking (around mile 2). There was no signage warning of the stop and I had NEVER seen a water station like this. I wish I'd had the time to get a picture - it looked like PVC piping with just water spouts? I nearly caused a traffic jam because I didn't realize that was the only chance to get water. Ooops. I moved over to the side of the path to get a picture of the "blue moon" - right as the sunlight was hitting it - pretty cool.
Miles 3-4 went by fairly decent, but then the bulk of the climbing started. The saving grace for me was that the sun wasn't beating down on us yet. Thanks to the early start and the mountains, the weather remained cool.
I already can't remember most of what happened during this race. The course was very well marked with mile marker flags at every mile. Aid stations were spaced well - around every 2 miles. After the first one there was water and nuun and food/gels.
I do remember that there was a lot more climbing than I expected (almost 800 feet over the whole course) and that the views were amazing. I also remember that once I got to mile 6 or so I was pretty much done. My legs were very tired and this honestly felt like one of the more difficult races I have ever done.

Somewhere after mile 9 there was finally some downhill. I was moving better, but due to the fatigue in my legs it certainly wasn't at any sort of blistering pace. Disappointing, but not unexpected.
I was hoping I was going to be able to come in under 2:30 (my how far I've fallen), but I could not really seem to get around the 2:30 pacers. We ran by the famous Stanley Hotel at mile 12 - very cool!
There was a bit more downhill and then we got close to the area near the main road that I recognized. When I got to the mile 13 flag I glanced at my watch - 12.80 miles. Hmmm, so the course was going to measure short?
NOPE. Turns out they placed the flag about a quarter mile too early, so it honestly was the longest ".1" to the finish ever. I had literally no kick in me. Blah.
Official Time - 2:30:05
Garmin Time - 2:30:07
Garmin Distance - 13.18 miles (so a tad long)
Overall Place - 720/1329
Gender Place - 384/864
Division Place - 75/153
Elevation Gain - 774 feet
Mile 1 - 10:38
Mile 2 - 11:36
Mile 3 - 10:43
Mile 4 - 11:58
Mile 5 - 10:24
Mile 6 - 12:19
Mile 7 - 12:32
Mile 8 - 12:31
Mile 9 - 10:10
Mile 10 - 12:03
Mile 11 - 10:40
Mile 12 - 11:32
Mile 13 - 11:09
Mile 13.18 - 10:31
Collected my ginormous medal and food box (with super weird not really edible items in it) and got my finisher pic.

Briefly chatted with my friend Cheryll and then headed back to the car for the long drive back.

  • A bit on the pricey side. I registered about 6 months in advance and I think it was still $80.
  • Shirt I think was fine, I didn't take one. It was actually similar in color to the one that I wore for the race.
  • Medal is huge, nice ribbon. (Sorry I don't have a close-up of it, I'm a slacker).
  • Very well organized aid stations. Lots of volunteers. And there were bathrooms at all aid stations as well. Nice to have the "cup free" race (next time I will READ my email and know that in advance).
  • Beautiful views. Very scenic.
  • Lots of ample parking - although again, I did get confused about the "pay lot" - and again, could have been prevented if I read things.
  • The start was a bit chaotic but there were TONS of bathrooms. I think I only waited about 5 minutes to use the bathroom about 30 minutes before the start.
  • Overall, this was a race I think I would recommend, but I likely will not do it again, just one to check off my list of Colorado races.

Week in Review (May 14 - May 20)

Tuesday  (12,837 steps) - Peloton ride before work. I was about 40 minutes into a 45 minute ride when our internet went out. Totally forgot ...