10 28 2014.

marathon monday

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Happy Marathon Monday! I figured that I’d give a little bit of a weekend recap with emphasis on how my half marathon “training” is going – since it’s now 5 days away!

On Monday of last week, I squeezed in a 4.23 mile run before the sun set. I was aiming for “easy miles” which is exactly what I did. I know I could’ve pushed for more miles, but I was a bit exhausted after Sunday’s long run. Also, runger.

I took Tuesday off from running to do some core work. I did 20 minutes of pilates following a 10-minute cardio warmup. It was a fast workout in the scheme of my typical 40+ minute runs.

Wednesday was my rest day. I took advantage of the down time (and it was pouring out!) and snuggled up on the couch with my book.

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Thursday, I went on my first after-dark run in the rain for 4.46 miles and loved every bit of it! When I got back, I was feeling ambitious so I made broccoli and sweet potato curry on carrot, parsnip and butternut squash “pasta.” I love my mandoline almost as much as I love curry!

Friday I ended the work-week with a nice easy 3.73 after-dark run with Darren.

I woke up early feeling motivated on Saturday morning. I wasted no time at all, brewing a pot of (pumpkin spice!) coffee and I poured myself a rather large bowl of granola. I don’t usually allow myself to eat cereal – the amount of sugar, even in the “healthy” cereals, astonishes me – but I sometimes make exceptions on the weekends. Afterwards, I set out for a 6.6 mile run.

To be completely honest, this run was hard. I was cramping up for most of it, despite waiting over an hour after my breakfast to digest before running. I was also really warm. I had made the mistake of checking the temperature online when I woke up, and took that to be the high of the day – when in fact it had warmed up about 10 degrees between waking up and ending my run. (A 2.5-hour window of time.)

I stopped dead in my tracks almost immediately after hitting 6 miles because my cramp suddenly felt like a pulled muscle. It was so painful, I could feel it just by breathing! I had experienced it once before on my right side and could actually feel the pain of the muscle for a few days after. I walked for 2-minutes or so before getting fed up and started running again. The pain was gone! (Thank goodness.)

I stopped by Rosemont on my way back and bought some blueberries for my dad’s birthday pie! (Since I love to bake, I make all of my friends and family a dessert of their choice on their birthday. So far I’ve done carrot cupcakes with cardamom cream cheese frosting, chocolate baklava, vanilla bean cheesecake, pumpkin spice cake, banana cream pie and now blueberry pie!)

Darren and I have this weekly tradition where we walk up to The Crooked Mile Cafe (4 blocks away) on Saturday mornings for breakfast. Darren was waiting patiently for me to return from my run and when I walked in the door, we agreed to go. Since I had already eaten breakfast, I decided to get an iced coconut coffee – cream only! Ohhhhhhh man. I got a 24 oz. so it lasted me a couple of hours! I sipped on it slowly as I made the pie, showered and cleaned up a bit. After making the pie, I zipped up to my parent’s house to begin the birthday celebration!

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(Photo from my sister, Ally.)

My dad cooked a trashcan chicken and it was delicious! I love the smoky taste that charcoal creates. I definitely ate too much and overindulged a bit on wine, but I allowed myself the free pass, vowing to get back on track on Sunday.

Sunday was the best. I woke up at 8:00, blogged a bit then ate some more granola and drank some coffee. This time I allowed almost two hours to digest because I had 10 miles planned and I did not want a repeat of yesterday’s run. At 11:00, I decided that it was time to get moving!

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Pictured: New Balance 550v3 ($39.99, TJMaxx), Bondi Band Headband ($5), Saucony Socks ($5, TJMaxx), New Balance: All Over Heather Capri ($19.99), Mesh Top in Carbon 2 ($14), C9/Champion 1/4 Zip (gift).

I changed into my running clothes, allowed my watch to connect and set out. I’m really excited to say that my run was phenomenal – I held a great pace, stayed in a really positive mental place for the entire time and didn’t experience a single cramp! It was the kind of run that sets a perfect tone for the remainder of the day. My route included running along the bay, running through a cemetery and even a mile of trail running.

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When I got back, it was 12:40 and Darren looked like he was about to leave. He wanted to walk to Rosemont to get a sandwich and asked if I’d like to join. I agreed, not really in the mood for a sandwich, but just liked the idea of a short “shake out” walk. As I put my running shoes back on, I realized that my big toe hurt (again)! My left big toe has been injured since my 10-miler with my mom two weeks ago. I thought that it had healed fully, but since it’s been bothering me again, I suppose not! (How on earth did I manage to injure my big toe when it’s so securely stable in my shoe?)

Anyways. I ended up getting some cottage cheese because that’s my newest snack obsession and I just crave it all the time now. I also walked past a bin of cranberries and couldn’t resist. I saw them and immediately thought of cranberry bread. Before I checked out, I perused the baked goods and decided that I had to have a yeast roll. (Can you tell that my body was thinking carbs?)

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Darren and I sat down to watch an episode of The Walking Dead while we ate: me with my cottage cheese/salsa combo and a yeast roll. Him with his sandwich. Then I made the cranberry bread. While it baked, I showered, put on some comfortable clothes and read on the porch. I had finished Going Somewhere and decided to start my next book – Becoming Odyssa by Jennifer Pharr David. I breezed through the first 50 pages yesterday and am loving it so far! I’ll write a bit more on it when I finish.

Also, check out my reindeer socks! I’m so proud of those. I know it’s way too soon but I’ll be running the Santa Hustle Half Marathon at the end of November so when I saw those at Reny’s for $1, I had to have them.

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The cranberry bread smelled so delicious when it was done so I couldn’t resist having a slice with some peach white tea. My afternoon was so relaxing.

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So now I get to taper. My half marathon is on Saturday – I’ve got two 3-milers scheduled for Tuesday and Thursday, a rest day on Wednesday and Friday and then I get to run 13.1 miles!


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