RnR LA Half Marathon Training – Weeks 5 & 6

5 Oct

Tonight’s raffle winner is Mathilde P!  Mathilde, I’ve e-mailed you for prize selection.

Weeks 5 and 6 of half marathon training started really good, and ended REALLY badly.

Week 5

what was supposed to happen                 what actually happened
Mon – 5 miles easy, strength                   5 miles easy
Tues – 12 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,       12 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,
1/2 mile w/u & c/d                                       1/2 mile w/u & c/d
Weds – cross train                                        walked 30 minutes
Thurs – 4 miles easy, BodyPump            elliptical, BodyPump
Fri – rest                                                            rest
Sat – 10 miles                                                  10 miles
Sun – rest                                                          rest

I did Monday’s run on the treadmill and took it really easy.  For intervals on Tuesday I was feeling really good until there were three left to go and I had some thigh discomfort, so I eased up a bit for the end.  I still had an average pace of 11:09, which is great.

I had planned to add in a fourth weekly run on Thursdays this week, but I was stuck on going to BodyPump at 6:30 and couldn’t figure out how to get a run in in between work and class, so I did the elliptical instead.

We were in Lake Tahoe over the weekend, and I was looking forward to some great scenery on my long run.  I tried to do some research on a good place to run but didn’t come up with much, so I settled on Pioneer Trail, which is a somewhat major two-lane road that I knew had bike lanes the whole way.  Safety was my main concern, so I wore my brightest orange shirt and carried pepper spray.

The road was hilly the ENTIRE way.  My plan was to try to run the whole thing without any walk breaks, but it became quickly apparent that I ought to take breaks in order to preserve enough energy to finish.  By mile 7 I was sick of running uphill and my legs were getting fatigued, so I used a couple of the bigger hills as an excuse to walk again.  The elevation was more uphill overall on the way out, so at least on the way back there was more down than up!  My time was 2:11:07 – not great, but all things considered, not terrible.

Week 6

what was supposed to happen                 what actually happened
Mon – 4 miles easy, strength                   rest
Tues – 12 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,       12 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,
1/2 mile w/u & c/d                                       1/2 mile w/u & c/d, strength
Weds – cross train                                        walked 30 minutes
Thurs – 5 miles easy, BodyPump            rest
Fri – rest                                                            ran 3 miles
Sat – 11 miles                                                  11 miles
Sun – rest                                                          rest

On Monday we drove back from Tahoe, and there was no way I was going to exercise when we got back.  To make up for it, I decided to give Tuesday’s workout my all and add my strength routine, since I feel like strength is really important considering my IT band issues.  A few intervals in, I started to feel a little pain around my tailbone.  I think maybe I was trying to hold my form a little too tightly, and my glutes/hips were tugging on my lower back muscles.  It felt like discomfort, rather than an injury, so I decided to keep going and ease up on my effort a bit.  It loosened up a bit, and other than that I felt great on that run.

I had nothing in me on Thursday.  I was a little PMS-ey, and Dave and I decided to go to Chili’s for happy hour and dinner.  (I haven’t been to Chili’s in…oh, about five years?)  On Friday I was feeling guilty about ditching my workout, so I ran three easy miles on the treadmill, which turned out to be an awful idea in hindsight.

Saturday morning, I set out for my long run at the Marina, like any other Saturday morning.  I took it really easy in the first half to ensure that I’d have energy to get all the way through.  I felt really good at the turnaround (5.5 miles), so I decided to try something like intervals; not necessarily running faster, but focusing on form and really using my leg muscles for a half mile then recovering for a half mile.  After two miles of this, I felt a telltale sharp pain on the outside of my left knee – my IT band acting up.  I had over three miles left to go, and I knew I was in trouble.  After my walking break at mile 8, I completely stopped to stretch my IT band and glute, then jogged really easily the rest of the way, taking another stretch break before the last mile.  I finished the 11 miles, but knew I had aggravated my injury, which was incredibly frustrating.  I think it was a combination of running the night before (horrible idea), running on gravel, and running longer than I had in a long while that did it.

Until next time…

Tonight’s Raffle Winner

3 Oct

I don’t have time for a proper post tonight, but I wanted to announce that tonight’s raffle winner is Celia H!  Celia, I’ve e-mailed you for prize selection.

Next drawing will be this Friday!

This Week’s Weigh In

28 Sep

Tonight’s raffle winner is Laura J!  Laura, I’ve e-mailed you for prize selection.

I weighed in at 147.4 Wednesday morning, which caught me off guard.  Even after going over my points allowance last week, I was back down to my lowest weight so far since joining Weight Watchers.  Sufficed to say, I was pleased!

When I went grocery shopping last weekend at Trader Joe’s I noticed that they had boxes of wine, one red and one white.  The red happened to be a shiraz, my favorite!  I’ve been thinking about saving money lately, so it made perfect sense to buy the equivalent of four bottles of wine for ten dollars.  However, this week I have been drinking more weeknight wine than normal just because it’s sitting there on the counter, so it’s not the best bargain for my points budget.  I continue to do battle with red wine…but, if you’re looking for a decent, cheap option, it’s a good one.  Here’s a review from someone who knows much more about wine than I do.

Wednesday, 9/26/12

breakfast – smoothie (mango, banana, almond milk, Vega One, rolled oats, kale)
AM snack – apple, 6 walnuts, coffee with vanilla soy creamer
lunch – Lebanese Sleek (whole wheat couscous, chard, kidney beans)
PM snack – lentil Crunchy Curls
dinner (at a bar watching the A’s game) – veggie sandwich (grilled eggplant and zucchini, cucumber, avocado, tomato chutney on rye), sweet potato fries with ketchup, 16 oz beer, 12 oz light beer, 6 oz red wine

exercise – walked 30 minutes

daily points used:  26
activity points earned:  1
activity points used:  11
weekly points used:  8

Thursday, 9/27/12

breakfast – Clif Mojo Peanut Butter Pretzel bar, banana
AM snack – 2 plums, 12 almonds, coffee with vanilla soy creamer
lunch – salad (lettuce, carrot, tomato, alfalfa sprouts, wheat berries, edamame, chickpeas, corn, roasted tofu, sesame dressing)
PM snack – banana ginger energy bar
dinner – Dr. Praeger’s veggie burger in a whole wheat pita with mustard and pickle, vegetable blender juice (bell peppers, cucumber, kale, jalapeno, lime juice)
after dinner – 8 oz red wine, half a cinnamon roll

exercise – ran 45 minutes, walked 30 minutes

daily points used:  26
activity points earned:  10
weekly points used:  13

before

after

Friday, 9/28/12

breakfast – smoothie (mango, kiwi, banana, almond milk, Vega One, rolled oats, kale)
AM snack – 12 almonds, coffee with hazelnut coconut creamer
lunch – Lebanese Sleek
PM snack – lentil Crunchy Curls
dinner – tempeh, green bean and mushrooms stir fry with brown rice, 12 oz MGD 64
after dinner – 10 oz red wine, whole grian pretzel sticks

exercise – walked 30 minutes

daily points used:  26
activity points earned:  1
weekly points used:  14

This stir fry was one of the better ones I’ve made.  I simmered the tempeh then marinated it in a mixture of black bean sauce, tamari, 1/2 tsp agave nectar, rice wine vinegar and sriracha, with water to thin, which was whisked with arrowroot powder to form a sauce at the end of cooking.

Tuesday Totals

25 Sep

Tonight’s raffle winner is David C!  I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – there are still plenty of prizes to be won in my Team ASPCA raffle!  Or, you can just donate to The ASPCA because you’re awesome and love animals!

I’ve still been having trouble staying within my points limit lately.  I’ve become a little lackadaisical, and I think I’m enjoying the success I’ve had so far by staying at this weight (and being able to wear the same clothes) for a little while.  I’ve also been more stressed than normal, so in addition to diet and exercise my mind is on a number of other things.  And, I’ve still been reaching for a glass of wine more often than I should…in fact, I’m drinking one right now (doh!).

Totals for 9/19/12 – 9/25/12

Daily points used:  182/182
Weekly points used:  46/49
Activity points earned:  38
Activity points used:  38
Non-existent points used:  36
Points left on the table:  -36

I’m hoping for a little bit of a loss tomorrow morning, sine I was up last week, but I’m not holding my breath for anything major.

Sunday, 9/23/12

breakfast – half a sprouted sesame bagel with 1 1/2 Tbs Tofutti cream cheese, banana, coffee with hazelnut coconut creamer
AM snack – Wavy Lays potato chips
lunch – salad (lettuce, red bell pepper, shredded carrot, Gardein Crispy Tenders, agave mustard dressing, Bac’Un bits
dinner – Hickory Smoked Tofurky in a wheat pita with mustard, shredded cabbage and pickle, cauliflower florets
after dinner – 18 oz red wine, whole grain pretzel sticks

daily points used:  26
non-existent points used:  17

Monday, 9/24/12

breakfast – smoothie (almond milk, frozen strawberries, banana, 2 Tbs hemp protein powder, 6 Tbs rolled oats, cinnamon, kale)
AM snack – grapes, 6 walnuts, coffee with vanilla soy creamer
lunch – salad (lettuce, red bell pepper, shredded carrot, Gardein Crispy Tenders, agave mustard dressing, Bac’Un bits
PM snack – chipotle black bean dip with cucumber and red bell pepper
PM snack 2 – banana ginger energy bar
dinner – Hickory Smoked Tofurky in a wheat pita with dill pickle coleslaw, cauliflower florets
after dinner – 10 oz red wine, whole grain pretzel sticks

exercise – walked 10 minutes, ran 49 minutes, strength training 40 minutes

daily points used:  26
activity points earned:  11
non-existent points used:  11

Tuesday, 9/25/12

breakfast – smoothie (almond milk, frozen blueberries, banana, Vega One protein powder, 2 Tbs rolled oats, kale)
AM snack – apple, 12 almonds, coffee with vanilla soy creamer
lunch – Hickory Smoked Tofurky in a wheat pita with dill pickle coleslaw, cauliflower florets
PM snack – chipotle black bean dip with carrot sticks and red bell pepper
PM snack 2 – 2 Medjool dates with 2 tsp almond butter
dinner – Lebanese Sleek, 6 oz red wine

exercise – walked 40 minutes, ran 53 minutes

daily points used:  26
activity points earned:  11
non-existent points used:  6

Lebanese Sleek, adapted from Quick Fix Vegan.  I changed pretty much everything about the recipe – couscous instead of bulgur wheat, kidney beans instead of black eyed peas, red onion instead of yellow.  The only components I kept were the Swiss chard and zahtar seasoning, and it was pretty tasty and definitely quick!

RnR LA Half Marathon Training – Weeks 3 & 4

21 Sep

Today’s raffle winner is Molly G!  Molly, I’ve e-mailed you for prize selection.

There are still plenty of rad prizes available in the Team ASPCA raffle!  I’m a little less than half of the way to my fundraising goal of $2300, so please donate if you can!

Now I’ll catch up on weeks 3 and 4 of half marathon training.  These weeks were…okay…

Week 3

what was supposed to happen                 what actually happened
Mon – 4 miles easy, strength                   rest
Tues – 8 x 400 w/ 200 recovery,         4 miles easy, strength
1/2 mile w/u & c/d
Weds – cross train                                        walked 50 minutes
Thurs – elliptical, BodyPump                  elliptical, BodyPump
Fri – rest                                                            rest
Sat – 8 miles                                                     8 miles
Sun – rest                                                          rest

I missed my workout Monday evening because of our fantasy football draft.  You have to have priorities, you know :)  I knew if I ran intervals Tuesday as scheduled I wouldn’t be up for strength training, and strength training is really important to my plan to prevent any further trouble with my IT band, so I made up the four miles from Monday on the treadmill and did my strength routine.

For the 8-miler on Saturday, my goal was to run the entire thing without taking any walk breaks, and I did!  I even took a gel and drank my electrolyte drink while jogging.  I was feeling a little sore from BodyPump on Thursday, so to keep my focus I kind of ran fartleks.  I would choose a landmark and “run strong” until I reached it, then recover by jogging more slowly until I could pick up the pace again.  I wasn’t necessarily trying to go faster, but by focusing on my form and really using my legs, I naturally go a bit faster.  My average page over 8 miles was 12:05 minutes/mile, which is really great for me!

Week 4

what was supposed to happen                 what actually happened
Mon – 3.5 miles easy, strength                 3.5 miles easy, strength
Tues – 10 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,        10 x 200 w/ 200 recovery,
1/2 mile w/u & c/d                                            1/2 mile w/u & c/d
Weds – cross train                                        walked 30 minutes
Thurs – elliptical, BodyPump                  elliptical, BodyPump
Fri – rest                                                            rest
Sat – 9 miles                                                     4 miles
Sun – rest                                                          rest

Monday’s treadmill run was progressive – 1 mile @ 4.8, 1 @ 4.9, 1 @ 5.0, and 1@ 5.1.  I know that’s not very fast, but treadmill running still seems harder to me than outside.

Tuesday’s intervals were actually supposed to be on a hill.  I ran a hill alright, Leona Canyon Trail – up a giant hill on the way out, and downhill the whole way back.  I actually hiked a few of the recovery portions on the way up, and had to watch my footing really carefully on the way back.  It was a beautiful, peaceful trail, but much better suited for a hike than running intervals!

That weekend we went to Reno, and I planned on running 9 miles along the river, which I’ve done before.  The path along the river there is really quite lovely.  Thing is, I had a little too much wine the night before, and stayed up too late, and slept really poorly, and felt pretty wretched that morning.  I set out for the run regardless, telling myself that I could go 8 miles or even less if I wasn’t up for it.  I had a wedding to attend that afternoon, and I wanted to be decent company instead of a tired mess.  Upon my first few steps it was pretty apparent that I was feeling terrible, and I didn’t want to push it or get sick, so I only ended up going four miles.  I was glad that I listened to my body and didn’t push it too hard, but mad at myself for not preparing properly to do a long run.  Since I’m training for this half marathon with Team ASPCA I feel more responsibility to train properly, so I felt like I was letting myself AND the animals down.

Tasty Tuesday

18 Sep

Today’s Team ASPCA raffle winner is Janet W!  I’ve e-mailed for prize selection.

There are still tons of prizes available, including Disney tickets, running gear and all sorts of goodies, and you can enter with a donation of as little as $5.  Every dollar helps the animals!

I splurged a little over the weekend and last night, so I tried to keep my eats today tasty but clean and light.

Tuesday, 9/18/12

breakfast – smoothie (frozen cherry-berry blend, banana, almond milk, 1/2 cup rolled oats, 2 Tbs chocolate hemp protein powder, 1 Tbs cocoa powder, kale)
AM snack – coffee with vanilla coconut creamer
lunch – tofu and vegetable soup with rice noodles, soy sauce and sriracha
PM snack – orange Emergen-C, strawberries
dinner – Vegan Shrimp & Quince Curry with quinoa

exercise – 45 minutes stationary bike

daily points used – 26
activity points earned – 7
weekly points used – 2

This delicious (if a bit unusual) shrimp and quince curry was made with Sophie’s Kitchen Vegan Shrimp, one of the prize donors for the raffle!

Prize Pineapple & Parsley Green Thickie

14 Sep

The first winner of the Team ASPCA raffle is Brandy B!  Brandy, I’ve e-mailed you for prize selection.

There are still plenty of prizes available, and you are still welcome to donate to The ASPCA to earn raffle entries!  If you’ve already donated, remember you can share the raffle link for an extra entry.  The next drawing will be Tuesday, September 18th!

I stumbled across the website Green Thickies the other day, and was particularly intrigued by the Prize Pineapple & Parsley Smoothie.  I’ve used parsley in fresh juices before, but never a smoothie!  Katherine pretty much guarantees that her thickies will last you through lunch, so this morning I gave it a shot.

I already have a green smoothie-for-breakfast habit, so making this wasn’t much of a change.  I made half of the recipe as written.  The only differences from my normal smoothies was that I used less almond milk and added 1/2 cup of rolled oats instead of protein powder.  It ended up being the same number of PointsPlus as normal, 4, so that was convenient.  I loved the flavor!  You couldn’t tell that there was parsley involved, it was more like a vibrant, fresh flavor.  The recipe is called a smoothie, which I guess isn’t as thick as a thickie, but it was much more thick than my normal smoothies.  Sadly, it didn’t hold me over until lunch, but I did wait to have my morning snack until about a half hour later than normal, and had less food than normal, so that was good.  I think I might try making smoothies with a combination of protein powder and oats to see if I can come up with a combo that lasts for hours.

I’ve got more parsley in the fridge, and am looking forward to another pineapple-parsley smoothie on Monday!