Monthly Archives: January 2014

Choco Loco 5k race recap and last weeks workouts

Hello all!  Hope everyone is able to stay warm!  Even here in the south we have had some days with questionable weather and schools, offices, and pretty much the entire city of Houston shut down from the ‘snow.’  Granted we did get some ice, and I know that not everyone has the same experience I do with driving in real winter weather….but I always am still a little shocked when the stores are out of bread and milk for the possibility of snow.
So back to last weeks workouts.  For the past 12 days or so I have have some pain in my left foot.  I decided to take it a little easier last week with running to see if that would help.
Monday- 2 miles of walking around the neighborhood pulling the twins in their wagon.
Tuesday- 1 mile of walking to and from the park. I also attempted Body Pump Tuesday night.  I wasn’t feeling super strong so I ended up lowering most of my weights for the class.  Even with that I had some strange pains in my back and shooting into my right leg.
Wednesday – I headed to the chiropractor after work and it turns out my lower back is REALLY tight.  And no squats for at least 3 weeks.  I am also putting myself on limited lifting till I get this back stuff worked out. That reminds me I have a massage gift certificate I need to use. This feels like a great time to use it!
Thursday – This was a total rest day.  I was just plain exhasuted
Friday – It was a ‘snow’ day and I only worked a half day.  After work I shut myself in my office and did some major work!
Saturday – 5k plus walking around and to/from the car.
Sunday – I was feeling really good and went for a jog in the neighborhood.  I was going to try for 5 miles, but ended up passing several houses with dogs who came running after me barking.  So instead of running up and down my driveway a thousand times, I called it quits at 3.2 miles.
Overall 10 miles for the week.  Considering the physical issues I was/am dealing with I was sort of ok with that number.

Race Recap
Back in November I saw there was going to be a chocolate 5k in Houston!  Well, as you can tell by my blog title, I love me some chocolate! So I signed up in mid- Dec along with a few friends!
After my ‘race’ last weekend, and the pain I was having in my foot I decided that I was just going to walk this one with my friends who were also walking for various reasons!
As the race got closer I started to look for more information about where to pick-up packets, parking, race map, etc.  The normal race day info.  The only info was that there was no race-day packet pick-up, and the only 2 options were on Wed from 10-3 and Friday from 10-6 in an area of town that is at least an hour drive without traffic. Needless to say that was somewhat frustrating.  On Thursday evening I was able to connect with one of the race directors and explained my situation (I know I was not the only one with this issue). He did say that he would pull my packet along with my friend’s packets so we would be ok for race day.  I was grateful for that gesture.
Late Friday afternoon we finally received an email with more specific race information.
I DO understand this was a smaller, local race, and it was the 2nd time they put it on, but I did feel they could have had more information available earlier than 15 hours before the race.

Saturday morning it was a bit chilly out.  I got up at 4:45 and checked the weather.  A balmy 24 degrees.  Got ready and headed to meet my friends.  I was thankful that I did not have to drive downtown by myself.  Our drive down was smooth and quick.  Amazing how few cars are on the road at 6am on a Saturday! Haha

We got to the race right when they opened up the day of registration table.  So it turns out we were not the only ones who did not pick up packets during the week.  I would say a high percentage of the race bibs were still there waiting to be picked up!

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Since it was so chilly we went back to the car to wait till closer to 7:30 to get out again.

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We got out of the car with a few min to spare for a pit stop then headed to the start line.
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And we were off.  We all walked together for about the first mile.  My foot was feeling ok, and I really wanted to run, but decided to just keep walking.  I picked up the pace a little and my friend Kyra and I walked together.  We seemed to be making decent time considering that we were walking.  A little after mile 2 I couldn’t feel the lower half of my body.  I was pretty much numb.  Kyra and I kept walking and chatting away.  We decided that we would run the last little bit together.  As we got closer to mile 3 I decided it was time to run.  We jogged our way to the finish line and it the clock was right around 50 min.  Official time 50:23.4

As soon as we stopped moving we got cold again.  We went and got our t-shirts and then found some amazing hot chocolate!!
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We stood in line for the chocolate buffet for a few min then our other friends joined us.  Since the line was so long we all took turns going to see some of the sponsors vendor tables to get some samples and goodies.
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The chocolate buffet had strawberries, bananas, graham crackers, mini candy bars, brownies & cookies .  At the end was a chocolate fountain to cove your selected items in chocolate.  My favorite selection ended up being the chocolate covered banana!
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Overall it was a fun race despite the lack of organization.  It is a race I would probably do again 🙂

Houston 5k Race Recap!

As I sit here and ice my foot I feel I might have overdid it just a little this past week…Boo pain

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I have been working in increasing my running from 2-3 days a week to 4-5 days a week, and also increasing my milage as well. I am part of the Winter Mile Challenge which has been really fun so far, as well as encouraging & motivating too! Last week I managed 10 miles, and this week I doubled it and got in 20 miles 🙂 Yahoo!

Sunday 2.25 miles
Monday 4.5 miles
Tuesday 2 miles plus Body Pump
Wednesday 3.6 miles
Thursday – Body Pump
Friday – 2.7 miles
Saturday 5k + 2 miles

Saturday was my first race of 2014! My first of 33 (or more) for the year! I even made up my own hashtag since I’m so cool. #33for33 🙂 I know, super creative.

Anyways, this race morning was not my best morning. It was WAY colder (32 degrees) than I thought it was going to be, I left my house 10 min later than I wanted and I just felt really unprepared in general.

I have lived in the Houston area for 6 years and I still am not super comfortable with the streets downtown. Plus most of the streets I needed to go on were already closed off made an even more confusing morning. I finally located a lot that was about as close as I could find to where I needed to go, and for $5 I figured it was ok! I asked the attendant how close I was to the area for the packet pick-up and he said 6-7 blocks! So I had to book it over to the convention center. Turns out I was only 3.5 blocks away. When I got to the packet pickup area, it was not very organized. I ended up standing in line for about 35 minutes to get my race gear.

After pickup I was planning to drop my bag and fleece back at my car. However, we were pretty much shuttled like cattle to the start area, and since I was already a little confused and later than I wanted to be I didn’t want to chance missing the start of the race. In the end I probably would have had time to make it back to my car, and if it was a race longer than 5k, I would have made it happen!

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I ended up starting the race with my fleece AND my running backpack…and something happened with my Garmin & the connection to the satellite was not working right…not the best start to a race.
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I walked for a few min to warm up and to get out of the way of the faster runners. I tried to run and my bag started to ram into my lower back. I tried to adjust it a little bit but it was not helpful. Then the sweat started and it made my fleece stick to my arms and felt pretty uncomfortable. So I slowed down to a fast walk. I tried to run a few more times but it just made my back hurt. I decided I was ok to walk it! My main goal was just to finish and honor #MegsMiles! About 3 minute later one of my workout buddies from Body Pump walked up to me with her daughter and said hi! I ended up walking and talking with them! We chatted away and when we got close to the finish line we jogged to the end. As we crossed the finish line there were several service men & women placing the medals on our necks! It was really touching for the men and women who serve our country to honor us in such a way.

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Official time: 49:16. I guess I can only get better from here!
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Overall it wasn’t a total terrible day, just not my best 5k ever! I hope my race next weekend goes better!
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And I got another shirt to add to my growing collection 🙂

Did you race this weekend?  How did it go?
How do you handle a not so perfect race?

Injuries!

Oops…This was supposed to post a few weeks ago and I just remembered it!

 

As I think back on my year of running one word pops into my mind…injuries…foot, back, and hip.
I think that injuries are a part of life that no one is really to immune to. I have certainly had my share of injuries over the years, and I have many other bloggers & friends who also faced injuries in 2013. I am thankful that my injuries are not as common as they were when I was a bit younger. I think back to a streak I had going when I was in high school and the beginning of college. It almost made me want to live in a padded room to avoid getting hurt. Even though I had many injuries and a few surgeries, I would not give up the wonderful memories and friendships I made while staying active with sports and running.

I was recently contacted by and introduced to the American Recall Center. It is a wonderful website chalk full of helpful information about drug and medical device recalls as well as applicable healthcare information and support. They regularly post about a plethora of topics related to health and wellness! I would suggest you check out their site and see what information is helpful for you!

The ARC has 4 pretty great core values as well:

To educate
To be trusted
To empower
To advocate

At the end of 2013, they came up with a list of the most notable-sports-injuries of 2013. I have to admit I was a little nervous to see this list as I was pretty sure there would be some gruesome injuries! And I was right in my assumption! Everything from torn muscles/tendons to broken bones to needing stitches or staples to massive blood loss. Injuries happen in all sports. In a blink of an eye an athlete can lose what they have worked so hard for. This was true for many athletes, although with quick thinking from teammates and medical staff, many athletes are able to recover and with rest & therapy, regain what they have lost and return to their beloved sports!

As I read over the list there were a few injuries that really stood out to me.
Kevin Ware, a guard for the Louisville Cardinals broke his leg in half during a game where he was trying to block a 3-pointer.

Zach Redmond, a defenseman for the Winnipeg Jets had an accident where a teammate accidentally skated over his leg severing his femoral artery. His teammates actions helped to save his life by helping to stop the bleeding. He was able to skate again just 6 weeks later even though he was told he wouldn’t skate agin.

The athletes weren’t the only ones who faced injuries! Even the Mascot of the Toronto Raptors faced a tear to his Achilles tendon.

The injury that was most amazing (and pretty gruesome) to me was from Pepe, the Center Back for the Real Madrid soccer team! During a game he collided his head into the head of his opponent instead of the ball leaving a gash that was bleeding profusely! To stop the bleeding, the medical team stapled his head closed right there, and he continued to play in the game! And they won!

Wow! These injuries make me very thankful that I have never had to deal with anything quite so awful!It is also a reminder that you can really never be too careful when playing sports or being active.

Have you ever experienced an injury? What was your recovery like?

Back to the grind…

I haven’t run since last year!!! Glad it was really only 10 days ago. Darn you sickness! And cold (for Houston) weather. Today was the first run of 2014! It was short and sweet, but it felt GOOD to get out there! I bundled up the twins and myself and out we went. 2.4 miles later I was ready for more but then the rain came. I am ok running in the rain, but I didn’t want the twins in the cold and the rain! So we headed back. It was probably good that I didn’t go too much further today as my quads began to BURN from body pump on last night! I added weights to my squats and I am so feeling it today!
My first race of the year is in 10 days! I have to say I am not feeling ready yet. I know it is a 5k, and there is no pressure, but I really want to do well! So for the next 10 days I am going to try to balance focus and rest too! Focus is something I have never done really well at with my running. I usually just have a sort of plan and go for it. Most of the time I sell myself short and I don’t feel I have reached my full potential with my running. So I am adding that to my goals. To be FOCUSED with my running. With that, I am off to bed and will pick up my running shoes on Friday 🙂

What tools do you use to stay focused on your goals?

Happy New Year!


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I am a little late in getting this posted…I have been dealing with some sick toddlers who were kind enough to share their cold with me…so the past week has been lots of cuddles, naps and fluids! I finally was feeling a bit better on Saturday and went a little overboard. Went to the gym, a birthday party and lots of errands. Also did my food prep for the week. That pretty much wore me out and I was exhausted most of Sunday. So more rest for me. And a baby shower and some babysitting. I am not really that good at resting…I guess I should add that to my list of goals for this coming year…

Speaking of goals, I have a few in mind. I have never really one to make ‘resolutions’ exactly. I know that I always had some areas I want to work on each year, but for many many years it was always to lose more weight, be in better shape, eat less junk….etc etc…As I though about my goals for this year, I really wanted to focus less on the areas I usually focus on, and set my goals as something more tangible! Right now I have a few health/fitness goals in mind, and other goals that are related to non-health/fitness areas of my life.


Here are my health/fitness goals for 2014

  1. Run 33 races
    This year I will be turning 33. I was inspired by my second elf from the Elf4Health challenge as she completed 30 races in 2013 for her 30th birthday! The more I thought about what she did, the more inspired I became! So THANK you Lauren for your inspiration!
    I am already signed up for a few races. It is going to be a mix of official races and virtual races! I know that with my sometimes crazy schedule this will be the best for me. I want to make at 20 of them official races! I will be doing 5ks, 10ks, and at least one half. I would really like to do 4 half marathons, so I am looking into that right now. It is hard to plan some of the races past April since I don’t know my entire schedule for the year yet. I will post my race plans as soon as the become official! One race that I am REALLY excited (and REALLY nervous) about is the DC Cherry Blossom 10 miler. I was really surprised to get an email saying that I was picked for the lottery!

  2. Improve my speed and endurance with running
    I have never been a fast runner. I have my moments sometimes when I run faster than a 10 min mile pace…but it only lasts for 30-60 seconds. I am working on getting my workout plan together to improve on my speed and my endurance.

  3. To become a Les Mills Body Pump instructor
    I have had this desire for the last 9 months or so. I have really enjoyed the classes I have taken over the past year. My instructor has been telling me since day 1 that I need to get certified. So lets make this the year!

  4. Learn more about nutrition and what MY body needs
    Over the past few years I feel I have learned more about the types of foods that are better for the body, and I feel I eat clean and healthy 80% of the time. There are times when I have struggled with certain foods, or seeing other ‘healthy’ people and what they eat, and I have realized that it might not be the best for ME just because someone else might eat it. So more self discovery, and not feeling guilty or bad about taking care of myself better.

  5. Sleep more
    It is not a surprise that this is an area in which I KNOW I need to work on. I have struggled on and off with insomnia for YEARS. Over this past year it has been more of a challenge for me to get the proper amount of sleep that I need. I really don’t even think I know what that is. I am setting myself boundaries with TV watching, phone usage, computer time, and focusing on getting myself to bed. I am really hoping that more regular sleep is only going to help me in ALL the other areas in my life that I want to improve on!

  6. New recipes
    I want to try at least 2 new recipes a month and also post 1 recipe a week on here.

  7. The Blog
    Hello, I need to be more consistent! I want to post 2-3 times a week on top of a new recipe that I have created or have tried.
    I also want to have more guests on my blog. I love hearing what other people have to share about. (So if you have a topic you want to share about, let me know!)
    Learn MORE about how my blog even works and the tools that are available to me! (Any experts out there???)

  8. Learn how to do my hair
    This might sound a little silly, but I am a 32 yr old who doesn’t exactly know what to do with a curling iron! My hair is SUPER long, and if it isn’t straightened, in a messy bun or a braid I am at a loss. I have tried you-tube and Pinterest, but I need to try again and really get serious about it. I don’t need to do my hair every day, but once a week I would love to know what to do with it!

  9. Write more letters
    I love a good text or phone call, but I really miss the days of letter writing! I grew up writing letters to relatives and some pen-pals.

  10. Get my card company on Etsy
    I need to learn more about Etsy and get my product out there 🙂

  11. Read more
    I would like to get through one book a month.  I had this goal last year and it was a bit of a failure.  So I want to try again!
  12. Become an even better and more supportive wife to my dashing husband
    We have had some chats about what we would like to accomplish as a couple and I am excited for this year together!

There are a few other goals that I have in mind, but I need to work through some of the details before I share them!

What are some of your goals for this next year??