Weekend Countdown

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*Disclaimer: I straight up stole the entire concept of this post from Tina. I read hers today and fell in love with it. Here’s my spin!*

Hey hey peeps! It’s FRIDAY! 8 p.m. on Friday and I’m blogging – woo, go me.

I kid, I kid. I love blogging, duh. I also love being home on a Friday night.

What is this weekend countdown that I so lovingly stole from Tina and am now putting to my own words? Looky here and see:

Five:

Blogger friends turned in real life friends that I cannot imagine life without:

1) Jess

2) Jolene

3) Meaghan

4) Christine

5) Whitney

These girls impact my life every single day, and I am blessed and grateful that I can call them friends.

Four:

Number of days I took off of working out this week until I decided it was high time to schedule a workout. Today would’ve been that workout – but I forgot and slept in. Tomorrow I am going to 7:30 a.m. Sunrise Power Yoga. I think that is a perfect way to start the weekend!

Three:

Here’s where I completely copy Tina (can you tell I’m not feeling very original tonight?). Instagram pics of the week:

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Princess Lexi

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A view of Providence from the State House Steps

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Wicked good snack

Two:

Glasses of wine tonight. Pinot noir. I almost exclusively drink red wine. Once glass #2 is gone (I’m working on it now) it’s back to hydration time! My sunrise power yoga just happens to be hot yoga.

One:

Quote of the day:

That is all my darlings! I hope everyone had a fantastic Friday. Enjoy the rest of your night!

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Flirting with 30: Improving Yourself is Always in Fashion

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Today’s guest post is brought to you by Laura, from Scribbles & Sass – and if her blog title didn’t tell you enough, her tag line most certainly will “Where badass is, sexy follows.” I freakin’ love that! Her blog is also almost exclusively pink, and she is a super sweetheart. We first “met” when she won a yoga DVD off of a giveaway I had – now we’re Twitter (@laurabridgman) friends. See what her thoughts are on an old article about turning 30 (I really love this since I’ve been 30 for almost 6 months now – remind me that I should respond to this post as well with my thoughts!)

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A few weeks back the Huffington Post shared an article that was first published by Glamour Magazine in 1997. Entitled 30 Things Every Woman Should Have And Should Know, it lays out what every woman needs in her arsenal before turning 30.

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(Source)

Here is the full list:

By 30, you should have…

1. One old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you’ve come.

2. A decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.

3. Something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.

4. A purse, a suitcase, and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be seen carrying.

5. A youth you’re content to move beyond.

6. A past juicy enough that you’re looking forward to retelling it in your old age.

7. The realization that you are actually going to have an old age — and some money set aside to help fund it.

8. An email address, a voice mailbox, and a bank account — all of which nobody has access to but you.

9. A résumé that is not even the slightest bit padded.

10. One friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.

11. A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.

12. Something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.

13. The belief that you deserve it.

14. A skin-care regimen, an exercise routine, and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don’t get better after 30.

15. A solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets of life that do get better.

By 30, you should know…

16. How to fall in love without losing yourself.

17. How you feel about having kids.

18. How to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.

19. When to try harder and when to walk away.

20. How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.

21. The names of the secretary of state, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.

22. How to live alone, even if you don’t like to.

23. Where to go — be it your best friend’s kitchen table or a yoga mat — when your soul needs soothing.

24. That you can’t change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.

25. That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.

26. What you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.

27. That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for very long.

28. Who you can trust, who you can’t, and why you shouldn’t take it personally.

29. Not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.

30. Why they say life begins at 30

Here’s the argument: It’s a bit outdated; 1997 was a long time ago. It says boyfriend, instead of partner, and suggests everyone should be shacked up, instead of independently feisty and raging with self-love.

Personally, it fits me just right. I am a heterosexual woman who would like a successful career AND a successful relationship. I’ve got the power tools, the skin-care regimen, and a firm grasp on where my yoga mat is at all times and how I feel about children. What I don’t have is a black lace bra. (Read my full list of my “haves” from 1-15.) Yes, to the cordless drill, but no to the sexy lingerie? Maybe it is 2012.

Replace the words however you’d like, but the message is pretty clear to me: love yourself, be comfortable in where you came from but don’t live in the past, and look forward to all the years you have left.

In the 90s we had Girl Power. I don’t think we need to be so idealistic, but we still need to take away the same principals. Thirty things on a list, no matter what the age, will not define us, but it will remind us to believe in the strength of women, ourselves, and be uplifting of others.

Also, 30 is just a convenient number. I’m sure the author didn’t want to think of 45 things; that’s less of a catchy title, so for the editor’s sake I’m glad she didn’t. These milestones may not be reached by any age, let alone by 30, but constantly improving yourself is always in fashion.

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(Source)

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Which point sticks out most to you?


Five for Friday: Run-dition

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Happy Friday! I’m blogging at 10 at night…why you ask? Because I love you guys, and because my nails and toenails are drying. I’m going out with a girlfriend tomorrow night and I have a bridal shower to attend on Sunday, so I just had to look beauteous! Winking smile

This Five for Friday is brought to you by (of all things, haha) RUNNING!

1) Running on tired legs is rough. As this beautiful friend of mine brought up in her post today, running on tired legs takes a run from YAY to MEH in a heartbeat. I experienced that feeling this morning as I dragged myself through 4 miles of legs that didn’t want to move.

2) I am a minute faster. Because I’m overly obsessed with numbers (I was going to be an accountant at one point in my life) I compared todays run with the same day last year. I found that last year I ran 5 miles at a 10:36 pace. Today I ran 4 miles at a 9:45 pace. Woot woot! Both of them “recovery” type runs while training for the Cox Rhode Races Half Marathon.

3) Upper body & core strength make for a good run. Even though my legs didn’t want to go this morning, the rest of my body felt very strong. With two weekly upper body/ab sessions and one weekly yoga session, I can feel the difference in every single run. It’s been key in rebuilding my endurance. Plus I always feel so refreshed, centered, and balanced after yoga.

4) A 4:30 a.m. alarm on Friday morning is dreadful. But once I got my butt up and out the door to run those 4 miles, it was amazing. I clicked my Garmin on at 5:07 this morning. Nothing but me, the wind in the trees, and the birds chirping. The occasional car – but I’d say I saw no more than 6 total cars. And there’s something to be said about having your workout done before 6 a.m. (And I do run alone – with mace and a cell phone – you can never be too safe).

5)  8 Days til Cox Rhode Races. I once again meet the Cox Rhode Races half marathon course. This race is my PR race – I haven’t been able to PR the half marathon distance in a year. I actually have myself convinced that half marathons hate me. From the awful rain at Rock N Roll Providence last year, to my hip giving out at the Amica Half in Newport, to severe stomach problems at the Half at the Hamptons – me and 13.1 aren’t friends. Next Sunday, while I run next to Jess, Scott, Christine, and possibly Amy, I am going to stare down that 13.1 and own it. Even if I don’t PR – It WILL be an amazing race. I just know it.

I hope everyone had an awesome Friday! I’m off to bed. I plan on spending all of tomorrow (until my girls night out of course) studying my head off! And enjoying every second of this weeks rest day!

Goodnight! XOXO

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Therapy & Yoga

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How’s that for a creative title? I am so glad tomorrow is my rest day, I’m tired!

I told you yesterday that I’d tell you guys about physical therapy so that’s up first. I’m going twice a week for three weeks, for an hour long session. Today was Day 2. They start with ten minutes of heat on my hip and IT Band, which feels oh so nice. I call it nap time, they call it heat therapy. Then the PT (physical therapist for short) does ten minutes of trigger point therapy which hurts. so. good. I’m definitely cringing and making assorted other faces when he does this, because he’s asked me more than once “Does that hurt?” and I say, “Yeah, but it’s okay.” I’m obviously not your typical physical therapy patient

Then it’s on to the stretching. I get to dive right into a minute per stretch because I’m active, in shape, and flexible – isn’t that wonderful? (cue sarcasm) I’m doing a laying down hamstring stretch with a rope, and because I can bring my leg to a 90 degree angle to my body already, I have to flex the foot toward my head and really pull. Ah, I love it. Then there’s the laying down IT band stretch (both of these can be found in this Cool Running Article, Stay Loose: Stretches for Runners). That one hurts, my right IT band is all sorts of tight and knotted up. Then there’s the piriformis stretch, which is apparently excellent for people who suffer from sciatica (that’d be me), and is the hardest stretch for me to do. He also had me do some calf and shin stretches on an incline board, and then called me a showoff because apparently I made it look easy. Funny when you are in better shape/can stretch better than your therapist, isn’t it?

Today he also made me foam roll the IT band. And I learned ANOTHER new foam rolling trick. Once you find the trigger point, adhesion, whatever you want to call it (source of utmost freaking pain, or almost crying point, are two terms I prefer) rest on it, but also move around a teeny tiny little bit for 30 seconds to a minute. Um, ouch. I had to take Advil after today’s session. But, I can tell I’m getting much better already. 4 more sessions until my re-evaluation, I’ll keep you posted!

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Next up, yoga.  Today I did this:

Half Tripod Headstand

Wicked exciting right? Plus I’m getting better at all the other poses too, like pigeon, and half moon (although I still need a block for this). I’m enjoying learning all of the real yoga terms for these poses too, and I think I’m getting used to the heat because I don’t seem to be sweating as bad.

Yoga makes me happy, and I love doing it before my rest day because once I’m done I feel so refreshed, then the next day I get to rest and enjoy the refresh even more.

I was going to give you guys a recipe tonight too but this is quite long enough! This weekend, I promise!

Have a great night and a happy Friday!

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And the Verdict Is…

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Patellofemoral syndrome (aka Runner’s Knee) and an overly tight psoas.

Now that’s a mouthful.

So, what does all of this mean?

The medical definition:

Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) is a syndrome characterized by pain or discomfort seemingly originating from the contact of the posterior surface of the patella (back of the kneecap) with the femur (thigh bone). (Wikipedia)

Runner's Knee

Source

My kneecap is literally just slopping around in there. It’s crunchy and straight up gross.

Psoas: As part of the iliopsoas, psoas major contributes to flexion and external rotation in the hip joint. On the lumbar spine, unilateral contraction bends the trunk laterally, while bilateral contraction raises the trunk from its supine position.[4] (Wikipedia)

Psoas

Source

As you can see from the picture, the psoas is extremely important in the function of the hip. Mine is beyond tight – like someone went in and cut a chunk of it out and now it’s short.

That explains both the knee pain, and the pain down the side of my leg.

The calf thing I kept talking about? That was just some muscle knots, they’ve been worked out. It isn’t my calf.

What does this mean for my running and racing?

I can run, if I feel okay with it. Right now, I don’t, so I won’t. I have a prescription for physical therapy, I’ll be calling them first thing tomorrow morning.

I have only one exercise restriction – no distance running.

And that means I can’t train for the Cox Rhode Races Marathon. I was also specifically told to not run the marathon. Boohoo. Sad smile

However, there’s a good chance I can still run the half. I am on a “play by ear” running status. The race is 38 days away.

What I have been told to do:

  • Cut back on my miles
  • Do more yoga (that’s not a problem!)
  • Stretch
  • Foam roll
  • Strengthen my quads
  • Pay CLOSE attention when I do decide to run
  • Take anti-inflammatories

If I do run, I’m to ice my knee directly after, as well as warm up with things like butt kicks and high knees.

I think I’m still in shock, that’s why I’m writing this with little to no emotion.

I’m just going to take it one day at a time and focus on healing. I can’t really do much else right now, right?

Anyone else ever had these troubles? Do you have any good quad strengthening exercises?

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What a Week

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I decided that my second post-marathon week was a good time to get back into the swing of full blown workouts – a week off was quite enough!

I’ve started on my quest to be in what I refer to as “personal trainer shape.” I definitely lack in the upper body and core department! Here’s how Week 1 went down:

Monday: Upper Body Strength Training Day 1 (Chest, Shoulders, Biceps), plus 10 minutes on the elliptical to loosen up my lower body for stretching, and abs.

Tuesday: Ran 5 miles

Wednesday: Upper Body Strength Training Day 2 (Triceps, Back), abs, and 5 mile run.

Thursday: Power Basic Yoga

Friday: REST!

Saturday: Walked 3 miles.

Sunday: Ran/Walked 4 miles

Phew! I’m ready to take on Week 2 – but with a minor change to my schedule.

No running. My calf that I’ve been going on and on about all week is still not feeling like running for me. When I do try to run on it, my form suffers, and I get pain in strange places like my foot and shin. So, I am going to suck it up and take Monday through Friday of this week completely off of running. I will instead either ride the stationary bike, or the arc trainer.

Between no runs, and a massage that I have scheduled for tomorrow night, I’m hoping my legs will be up to normal running again come Saturday or Sunday. I’m playing it safe here because it is getting better. I can walk normal and stairs aren’t agonizing anymore – but it still acts up when I run, so I know that the only way to heal it 100% is to not run on it.

I’ll probably sneak in a couple of lunch time walks and/or doggy walks this week too – since it’s supposed to be gorgeous all week! Smile

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In other news – did anyone else have an incredible weekend like I did?

Yesterday started with that 3 mile walk, followed up by an amazing trip to Boston for lunch with Jess, Jolene, and Meaghan. LOVE these ladies – we had lunch at Snappy Sushi and chatted for a good 3 hours. It was so much fun – I feel like we’ve all been friends for so long, since we just fall into a perfect chatty friendly comfort zone. I’m pretty sure none of us wanted to leave, if only we could sit and talk and eat sushi all. day. long.

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Pictures shamelessly stolen from Jess Winking smile

Awesome times, can’t wait to see these ladies again – SOON!

Then I had to rally for fun times #2 of the day – dinner with Jen and Paul. They made an incredible boiled dinner – complete with corned beef from Whole Foods. I’ve never had Whole Foods meat before – holy, it was delicious. We sat, and ate, and talked, and ate some more for a good two hours! Then me, Jen, and Alison (sorry if I spelled your name wrong!) walked to the Irish pub down the street from Jen and Paul’s house for a couple of beers, where we sat and talked and talked and talked some more.

Funny how that’s what us girls do, isn’t it? I never get tired of talking LOL

Today I woke up (kind of late – staying out til 1:30 a.m. will do that) to a beautifully sunshiny day! After studying for a couple of hours, I headed out into the beauty for some yard work (aka cleaning up after my dog and filling in all the holes she dug!). I was in running capris and a tee shirt all day – amazing!

My legs felt great thanks to this little contraption that I used at Jen and Paul’s house:

Medidyne Pro Stretch

Medi Dyne Pro Stretch

But, alas, not good enough to run the entire 4 miles. Hence, my decision to take a few days off. I also bought one of these because it feels amazing.

I wound down the afternoon with some stretching out on my deck, with a “tropical slushy” that I created!

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Then later in the afternoon it was a beer on the deck with mom before dinner! I love being able to spend so much time outside!

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How was your weekend? Anything exciting or particularly awesome happen to you?

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Sweat to Street Week 3

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Welcome to Sweat to Street Sunday’s!

Each week my fabulously fit co-hosts and I will link up with one everyday outfit AND one fitness outfit that we love!

"Fashion" "Fitness" "FitFluential" "Fashion Link Up" "Fitness Clothing"
Meet Your Hosts!
Family and Life in Las Vegas (Emily)
Wild Things RUN Free (Charlotte)
Running and Cupcakes (Samantha)
MCM Mama (Erika)
Boobs, Barbells, and Broccoli (Tenecia)

***IF YOU WANT TO FOLLOW SWEAT TO STREET ON TWITTER OR PLAN ON TWEETING YOUR POST, PLEASE USE THE HASHTAG #SweatToStreet***

Sweat to Street has been created as a place to link up your favorite outfits of the week as a new Sunday blog feature. The idea is to have some fun and change it up! Each week we encourage you to post one workout outfit and one outfit you wore that isn’t fitness related.

Every week we spotlight one awesome blogger who links up with us in the previous week! Our way of thanking you for sharing your fabulous/fun/fitness style!

This week’s featured blogger:

Gorgeous Maria from A Life to Bragg About

a life to Bragg about

Link-up Suggestions:

Remember if you don’t link up, we can’t choose you to be next week’s featured blogger!

This week we had some beautiful weather here in Little Rhody so I busted out some spring fashion! I absolutely love the pants I’m wearing – they’re so comfy, and fit perfect.

PinkShirtOutfit2

Side ponytail courtesy of 1981

My sweat outfit this week is what I wore to my second yoga class. I took a pic before I wore it since I figured you don’t really want to see what it looked like after! Winking smile I love wearing my run capris to yoga – they wick the sweat away perfectly!

Sweat Outfit

We are so excited to see all the fashions that are shared each week!

 



Sweat to Street Sunday: Week 2

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Welcome to Sweat to Street Sunday’s!

Each week my fabulously fit co-hosts and I will link up with one everyday outfit AND one fitness outfit that we love!

"Fashion" "Fitness" "FitFluential" "Fashion Link Up" "Fitness Clothing" Meet Your Hosts!
Family and Life in Las Vegas (Emily)
Wild Things RUN Free (Charlotte)
Running and Cupcakes (Samantha)
MCM Mama (Erika)
Boobs, Barbells, and Broccoli (Tenecia)

***IF YOU WANT TO FOLLOW SWEAT TO STREET ON TWITTER OR PLAN ON TWEETING YOUR POST, PLEASE USE THE HASHTAG #SweatToStreet***

Sweat to Street has been created as a place to link up your favorite outfits of the week as a new Sunday blog feature. The idea is to have some fun and change it up! Each week we encourage you to post one workout outfit and one outfit you wore that isn’t fitness related.

Every week we spotlight one awesome blogger who links up with us in the previous week! Our way of thanking you for sharing your fabulous/fun/fitness style!

This week’s featured blogger:

Madeline from Food Fitness Family

"FitFluential" "Fitness" "Featured Sweat to Streets Blogger"


Link-up Suggestions:

Remember if you don’t link up, we can’t choose you to be next week’s featured blogger!

We are so excited to see all the fashions that are shared each week!

This week we had some RIDICULOUSLY (awesome) warm weather, so I busted out the spring clothes!

Tank Tops

Tank Tops Bacj

Whole Outfit

And, since I’m still recovering from New Orleans, there wasn’t much sweating going on this week. I did go to yoga class yesterday, but forgot to photograph my outfit entirely. So, instead of an entire outfit, I’m going to share with you one item that I think (hope) is going to be crucial to my next marathon.

Saucony Mirage 2 – These shoes are VERY similar to my Kinvaras in that they have a 4mm heel to toe drop, and they’re light; however, they’re a little heavier than the Kinvaras because they have a bit more cushioning, which will hopefully help with the foot pain/soreness I had in New Orleans. I’ll be testing these out for the first time this afternoon, stay tuned for more details!

Mirage II-1Mirage II-2Mirage II-3

So, what did you wear this week?! Show me whatcha got!

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My First Yoga Class

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Today I attended my first ever yoga class, Power Basic. From the studio’s website:

Power Basic:  This class is geared toward the beginner that desires a challenge while enjoying a non-judgmental place to try something that might be brand new to them. This class revolves around various sequences of poses that flow from one to another while focusing on breath. The room is HOT with the temperature set to approximately 90 degrees to to aid in creating deeper flexibility and detoxification. Options are shown to modify poses to suit all levels.

I woke up this morning a little anxious, a little nervous, a little excited. I didn’t know what to expect, but honestly I was expecting a room full of thin, Gumby-like people that made me look like I’ve never practiced yoga in my life.

I started the morning with one of my typical green smoothies. Their website says “practice yoga on an empty stomach” – well I can’t do anything on an empty stomach – so I drank it 90 minutes before class, making sure it had plenty of time to digest.

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Pre-yoga breakfast of champions!

I arrived at the studio about 15 minutes ahead of time, still feeling a little uneasy. Not only about the aforementioned possibility of Gumby-like people, but because the only yoga mat I own is a Wii fit yoga mat, and I was dressed in running clothes (capris and a tank top).

It didn’t take long for the unease to settle. I walked to the front desk and proclaimed “I’ve never been here before.” The girl working knew exactly who I was, thanks to a message I had left the day before inquiring about how to redeem my Groupon. She got me set up in the system, told me where everything was, and sent me on my way.

I entered the studio, found a nice spot at the back of the class, rolled out my mat, and set up my towel and water. Then I sat down and observed. No one in that room looked any different than me, and most of them were using the rental mats provided by the studio, so my Wii Fit mat didn’t make a world of difference. I also noticed everyone else’s outfits looked very similar to mine. Okay, good, I don’t look ridiculous wearing running clothes to yoga class.

The instructor, Julie, came over, introduced herself to me and I made sure she knew it was my first yoga class. She asked me if I practice regularly, and I told her that I do, just at home. She is a super nice person – and a fantastic instructor.

Right before beginning instruction Julie asked if anyone had specific areas they wanted to work one – one girl piped up and said “hamstrings” and I chimed in and said “hips”. Perfect, lets work on those running muscles!

Class started nice and easy – some sitting postures, and sun salutations, before moving into more technical poses. I was sweating before she even began, but by about halfway through the class I had to spread my towel across the front of my mat so I wouldn’t slip off from all the sweat. She made sure she really incorporated a few excellent hip openers – like lizard pose.  And the only person other than the instructor that was truly Gumby like in the class was the girl that was working the front desk. I actually felt pretty good about myself that I didn’t have to modify any poses, or take a break!

The relaxation at the end of the class was amazing. When I first laid down, my lower back ached, but by concentrating on my breath and really giving into my body, I relaxed and my back found it’s way to the floor.

I can’t believe it has taken me this long to take a yoga class! I loved every minute of it – and have already signed up for the same class this coming Thursday!

Now I’m chowing down a delicious lunch before getting on with the rest of my Saturday.

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Whole wheat bagel spread with Laughing Cow Chipotle Fresco, spinach, and tomato. Apple Cinnamon Chobani – my new FAVORITE flavor!

Hope your weekend is going great!

Have you ever taken a yoga class? Were you feeling like I did before it?

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Planning to be Planless

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Makes sense, right? I am going into Marathon #4 without a written training plan.

Are you thinking I’m crazy yet?

Here’s the thing – every time I write a training plan, it changes. Then it changes again. And then – well it changes some more.

Then I stress.

And I freak out.

And I panic.

Why do I do this to myself?

I am an extremely organized person. I love lists.  My closet is sorted by skirts, pants, blouses, sweaters.  I have folders for every piece of outstanding work I need to do on my desk at work, stacked in alphabetical order..

Maybe over the top but it makes me happy and comfortable.

Marathon #4 is where I am going to step out of my comfort zone.  Not just by not having a written plan, but also by increasing my run quantity.

Here’s how it’s going to go down:

  1. Run as much as I can while listening ever so closely to my body. At least one long run per week (of course). I’d like to work in some tempo and speedwork too, but I’m going to wait until April to start that. Right now, I’m going to ramp back up while my legs continue to heal. I run 4 days a week right now. If I can bump that to 5, and maybe even 6, I will. But it all depends on how the legs feel. (This is entirely experimental)
  2. Do yoga once a week – NO EXCUSES.  I am going for my sub 4:30 in Providence – I’m so close now, I’m confident I can do it. But I have to keep my hips open, and the rest of my legs and core strong.
  3. Begin strength training again – my entire body, not just my upper body and core. Again, with all this running I’m going to need to keep my legs strong. I’m going to try to strength train twice a week, at least.

I know this sounds crazy, and it sounds like a lot. But I’m going to move into it slowly and carefully. I’m also going to make sure I have a pull back week or two thrown in for good measure, and that I taper fully before the race.

Wish me luck!

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