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Fitness Friday: Running Update

Its Friday ALREADY! This week just flew by, not sure where the days went, but when I woke up this morning and realized it was already Friday again, I was like what the heck!

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I have recently started concentrating on building up my running skills. I’ve been running at the gym on the treadmill for a few years, but only as a last resort to get some added cardio into my schedule. About two months ago, I decided that I wanted to really amp up my running and see if I could actually finish a 5K race.

I downloaded a running app on my phone to track progress and back on August 31st wrote a post about my progress. A few days after that I was signed up to do a 5K at the Wilmington Waterfront in Delaware. It’s a perfect course for beginners as it is mainly flat and on the water so the sights are great which makes running more pleasurable (for me anyway).

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I committed early that week to running the race (not walking) and geared up both mentally and physically. My goal was to finish the race in 40 minutes. Up to this point I hadn’t run a complete 3 miles on the road yet and was a little nervous, but knew I could walk when I needed a break.

I arrived 30 minutes early picked up my registration packet, pinned on my bib, and did a little stretching. Prepped my mappy thing so I could time each mile as I went so that I could look back afterwards to gauge my progress. The BF also came down to watch and support me, which meant the world to me. He encourages me in everything I do, and always says he knows I will do whatever I put my mind to. It was important to me that he be there at the finish line when I crossed. He was. And it made my night.

The gun went off and we headed through the gate and over the timer mat. I took off quickly passing people right out of the gate. I don’t know if it was the adrenaline or what, but I completed my first mile in 10:49. That was the fastest pace I had ever done. Dont’ really know how that happened but it was a cool feeling when the voice in my headphones said “split pace 10:49.” I was like yeah girl you go (in my head of course).

The second mile was not as good as the first, my breathing was crazy out of whack and I started walking/running/walking/running. I finally got my breathing in check and found a good pace after the second mile and found myself next to a younger girl and we were in synch the rest of the way to the finish line. Thinking back that helped me out tremendously getting through the third and last mile.

When I realized the end was coming up and I rounded the corner, I took off for the finish line. There were two older women in front of me the entire time, and I was like “no way I’m coming in behind these two” so I picked up my pace, passed them on the right, rounded the corner to the finish line and crossed with a time of 37:44. Whew!

I beat my 40 minute goal by 2 1/2 minutes. I was exhausted, proud, and really really sweaty.

That was Sept 4th.

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Last night my co-worker and I competed in a second 5K on the same course. This time I ran the entire time only walking to grab water at the water station. My goal for this week was to run from beginning to end without walking and hopefully dropping my time a bit.

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I was late getting there, quickly grabbed my bib and lined up just in time. They decided to start the race 10 minutes earlier because a severe thunderstorm was in our near future. We lined up, listened to the National Anthem, the gun went off and out we went. I felt good even though I hadn’t had a run in a few days.

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First mile pace was 10:17. Slightly better than last weeks race even though the sky opened up and it downpoured on us for the entire first mile and a half. I was concentrating so hard last night to keep my breathing under control because I knew if I was going to run the way, I needed to keep that in check.

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Second mile pace ended up being 12:21 not sure why except maybe that I was just over thinking everything at this point and just kept telling myself “don’t stop running”. I crossed the half way point and grabbed a water took a few walking steps and finished the cup of water and got right back to running. By this time i felt good, my feet were moving at an even pace, my breathing was no erratic (like last week) and I found a good pace that carried me all the way to the end.

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I finished this weeks race (without walking) in 36:36 with an average pace of 11:48. My best time yet!

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I am loving this process. I am thankful that my body can handle what my mind wants it to do. I can’t wait to get better, faster and more efficient in my running. I find it very impressive when they announce at the end of the race the top 70-75 age bracket winners. I want to be one of those women at age 75 still running races. I love that! So encouraging.

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5K Color Run 2013 ~ Philadelphia, Pa

 

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I will be hitting the treadmill once again in hopes to successfully complete The Color Run being held here in Philadelphia, PA on July 14, 2013. I am so excited to be participating in the happiest 5k on the planet. Not only will it be a day full of fun events, but I will be getting to meet some great new people that I have connected with through my fitness page that I host on Facebook.

 
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How do you sign up for The Color Run?

Click here and search for a run that is being hosted in your area under the locations tab. Once you find a location that is open and in your area, you can sign up either as a single runner/walker or join a team.

According to the website there are only 3 rules:

RACE RULES

Rule #1 All participants are welcome… fast, slow, runner, walker, old, and young.
Rule #2 White shirt dress code at the official start line and ready to roll by 7:00am.
Rule #3 Completely colored Willy Wonka goodness at the finish.

How long is a 5K?

A 5K is 3.1 miles

How I am training for The Color Run?

I plan on following The Color Run 8 week training guide to get my running skills back up to par. It’s been a while since I’ve actually been on the treadmill or hitting the pavement.  I will also be including strength training by continuing to incorporate P90X every other day. My plan is to work out 6 days a week and switching up between cardio/running/strength training.

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I have four months to go until race day. I am so excited to be participating in this 5K. Not only does it support a worthy charity, it will be the most colorful day of my year!

What races or fitness events are you looking forward to this year?

Day on the Slopes

A few years back, I decided (during a slight mid-life crisis) that time was going to fast and I needed to start crossing off some of the things on my bucket list.  One of which was to learn to ski.  I have to say that it has been a long slow process, but I LOVE skiing now.  The adrenaline you get from being on top of a mountain, sliding down something that massive, on two stick-like-flat-pieces of carbon fibre and plastic that are attached at the bottom of your feet, it all seems just so glorious. The rush of the wind passed your face.  The weaving in and out of people strewn all over the mountain.  I love every bit of what skiing has to offer as a sport!   I love being at the peak of a mountain.  The air that fills my lungs is clean and crisp, the snow cold yet invigorating.  Skiing is truly a love of mine now, where the cold was once my nemesis.

Ski day w/my son @ Big Boulder, PA

Ski day w/my son @ Big Boulder, PA

Cold weather was never something I enjoyed, I was definitely a warm weather girl.  That was until I learned to ski.  I have my son to thank for that.  He insisted on learning to snowboard as a younger boy only dreams of doing.  So we did.  At first I tried snowboarding, but the brain shaking drops to the ground on my rear were just not what I had in mind.  The next trip was a completely different experience.  I didn’t quite grasp the trick to snowboarding and since I didn’t know how to ski either I thought “what the heck”!  So I took the half day ski school lesson and it’s been such an enjoyable experience since that day. 

Skiing provides family time with my son, that I would not normally get at home.  While we both love to hang out with each other it doesn’t always end up that way.  So instead of spending our weekends sitting in front of our own personal TV’s, we go skiing!  We talk more, smile more, and especially make lasting memories. 

I’m glad we learned to enjoy winter for all it has to offer.  It’s great exercise, and makes for great family time.  Plus I know that my son loves it so much, that it will be something he eventually teaches his family to love.  I find it very gratifying. 

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So this weekend my exercise of choice was a day on the slopes!  If I had to choose everyday between the gym and the mountain ~ mother nature would win every time! 

I’m chalking it up to a leg day!  My hips, thighs and calves are definitely feeling it!

What winter activities get you and your family off the couch and outside?

Quinoa Protein Bars

I am always on the lookout for a good homemade protein bar. I find the protein bars you buy in the store are loaded with a bunch of stuff I truely do not want in my body. Except for a select few most are filled with refined junk and a ton of sugar……

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So when I came across this recipe from The Lean Green Bean I was super excited. I introduced quinoa into my diet several months ago after reading that it is a complete protein source. The texture, flavor and different color combinations really sparked my fancy and I’ve been trying different recipes ever since. These breakfast bars are now my new favorite. Not only are they EXTREMELY filling but they pack quite a flavorful punch to boot.

I did make some modificatins to the recipe (only because I did not have some of the ingrediants). The next go round at baking these delightful little bars would be to increase the sweetness a bit.

Adapted from a Recipe by: The Lean Green Bean

Quinoa Breakfast Bars
1/2 chick pea flour
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1 cup oats
1/2 cup nuts, chopped (I used peanuts in this version, but any nut would be good, but will change the nutritional value)
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t baking soda
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1/3 cup natural peanut butter
1/4 brown rice syrup (I used molasses)
1 egg white
1/3 cup natural apple sauce
1/2 t vanilla extract\
1/2 cup dried cranberries

In two seperate mixing bowls, combine into one bowl the dry ingrediants, in the other bowl combine the wet ingrediants. Stir the dry ingrediants into the wet mixing well. Spoon batter into an 8×8 greased baking dish and bake 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Should be stored in the refrigerator.

They were so good, even my neighbors enjoyed them! These little beauties did not stick around long and I will be adding them to my go to list of healthy snack options

I am a Beachbody Coach!!!!

I am so excited to embark on my new journey as a new Beachbody Coach.  The results that I have attained using P90X are amazing!  My body truely changed before my eyes in only 90 Days!  With my first round of P90X complete and total weight loss of 13 lbs and 11 overall inches from my 5’2″ frame the question was “why not become a coach?”.  I fell in love with P90X so much that now I want to help you achieve the same results I did.

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