Thursday, May 31, 2018

Nature Scavenger Hunts | BUFF® #LiveMoreNow Part 3

Disclaimer: I received three BUFF® products to encourage me to #LiveMoreNow as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Summer has officially begun here. The temps are up, sun is shining and the kids' summer activities start next week! I have loved watching our oldest in swimming lessons and "teeny ball" in the past years and now look forward to our second babe joining in the action as well.

One new adventure we have taken on this year is nature study. With our children being 5, 3 and 6 months old, we're not into the intense studies (obviously, we're just pre-k here!) and our nature studies are more like "scavenger hunts". We read books on interesting aspects of God's creation (i.e. lately it's been bird eggs) and then go out and experience hands-on.

Our nature study adventures take us to the nearby state park with friends, to grandma & grandpa's farm for a weekend and sometimes simply out for a picnic by the river here. I pack up the Camelbak "diaper bag" full of snacks, bug spray, sun protection and diapers of course. Then we're off!


Last week we found this little nest in the shrubs right by our house. Because it's nearby, we are able to watch this nest to see if any birds do return or if it is abandoned. The finished product of tedious nest-building is amazing to see up close!



It's been beautiful and extra warm lately, in the 80's and 90's even, so we dress the part and I'm almost always wearing a hat. My Buff Trucker Tech Cap is a favorite because of its ventilation and built-in sweatband! The kids start with hats on but, because they tend to drop clothing as quickly as trees lose their leaves, my best bet is slathering them in sunscreen.


Shortly after finding the abandoned nest by our house, we found part of a Robin's egg shell to match the illustration in our nature study book!


These little nature "scavenger hunts" are so much fun! It's one of the many ways we #livemorenow in the summer months and, as we hit the swimming pool next week, I know my BUFF gear is going to be getting a lot of use. Many sunny days lie ahead!

Oh yeah, and a pretty important marathon coming up, too. (P.S. Is it time to taper yet?!)


How will you #LiveMoreNow this week? 


#Gmas18 Training W14 Recap

Follow along the 16-week journey as I train for my 10th 26.2, the Grandma’s Marathon coming up on June 16, 2018. I look forward to running with fellow BibRave Pros Angie, Amy and Jenn!

MONDAY: 

Off

TUESDAY: 

Fartlek Run 8.01 mi, 01:07 @ 08:19 pace that was supposed to be 1:00 @ 5k pace then 1:00 recovery jog. I’m still stiff from Saturday’s long run struggle and took this morning’s run easy instead. Still picked up the pace for 15 intervals of 1:00 but there was no 5k pace left in me! Foam rolling today!!!!

WEDNESDAY: 

(Treadmill) Easy Effort 3.1 mi, 00:30 @ 09:40 pace because I wasn’t able to make it out this morning with a fever-ish baby. Praise the Lord he’s doing better now! Hope we sleep.

THURSDAY

Tempo Intervals 6.06 mi, 00:48 @ 07:55 avg pace with 1 Mile x 3 @ 7:10, 7:13, 7:11 (3:00 recovery jog) followed by a couple hill intervals on my pathetically small, grassy “hill”. I tried.

FRIDAY:

Off

SATURDAY:

Long Run 14.03 mi, 01:58 @ 08:22 pace with 9 miles outside and 5 miles on the treadmill. Hubs is working today so I fit in the miles “creatively”. Ha!

SUNDAY:

Easy Effort 3 mi, 00:29 @ 09:48 pace for double stroller run/family bike before bed!

TOTAL MILEAGE: 34.2 miles



Let's Connect!



Linking up with Holly and Wendy's Weekly Wrap Up.

Friday, May 25, 2018

They See Us Rollin' | BUFF® #LiveMoreNow Part 2

Disclaimer: I received three BUFF® products to encourage me to #LiveMoreNow as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

The summer is rollin' and so are we! I have never considered myself much of a cross-trainer when it comes to marathon training but while thinking over this post, I've realized my life is cross-training.

I run for cumulatively about 6 hours a week and thankfully the rest of my hours are spent with my three kiddos. As much as these boys like to move, I'm now considering them my cross-training — especially now that our 6-month-old is mobile and very busy.

Biking is by far a favorite activity for our 5- and 3-year-old boys whenever the roads aren't covered in snow. Now that their biking legs have built up strength again after the long winter, they are rolling on their bikes near daily.

The baby and I just need to keep up!


The weather isn't much of a deterrent. Sometimes in the early Spring, they even bike in their snow pants! The weather can't stop them as long as the roads are clear.

This Spring there have been many biking adventures when I'm wearing my cozy BUFF® Braidy Hat to keep warm yet my oldest is still just in a t-shirt (that's a whole other issue...). We have a few different routes in town and driving to the bike path in a neighboring park is even more fun.


Since having kids I have been mainly a stroller runner but I hope to do more biking again as our kids get older. Now that our weather has really heated up, my oldest and I were able to bike in front of our house while the two younger boys watched.

If this heat sticks around — today it's 90°F! — I may have to retire the cool weather gear til Fall and stick to my BUFF® Trucker Tech Cap instead. The weather this year changed gears quickly all in the same month! Thankfully BUFF® has gear to cover all the seasons for kids, adults and even pets.


With this being my peak week of training for Grandma's Marathon, I can definitely feel the cumulative fatigue of running and being so active during the day. Hopefully it will all pay off on race day! I'm tired but the taper is near and life is too short to sit still. These kids really know how to #LiveMoreNow!


How will you #LiveMoreNow this week?
I will share one more #LiveMoreNow adventure with you next week!


#Gmas18 Training W13 Recap

Follow along the 16-week journey as I train for my 10th 26.2, the Grandma’s Marathon coming up on June 16, 2018. I look forward to running with fellow BibRave Pros Angie, Amy and Jenn!

MONDAY: 

Off.

TUESDAY: 

Easy Effort 7 mi, 01:04 @ 09:08 pace and it was already almost 60°F at 5:30 am! I like it!

WEDNESDAY: 

Marathon Goal Pace 8.35 mi, 01:03 @ 07:29 pace run this morning before our 2nd boy’s third birthday celebration! Followed by errands, Happy Meals at McD's for the kids and picking up a neighbor/friend at the airport :)

THURSDAY

(Treadmill) Easy Effort 5 mi, 00:46 @ 09:09 pace birthday miles (woop!) while finishing the “Moana” movie with the kids. It was a pretty cute movie though maybe a little scary for the kids in parts. We were at the State Park with friends all morning so it was nice to take a break inside before supper.

FRIDAY:

Easy Effort 3.15 mi, 00:30 @ 09:31 pace before one more 20-miler this weekend.

SATURDAY:

Long Run 18.06 mi, 02:34 @ 08:31 pace that was supposed to be 20-miler #3. I ran five days in a row this week because of all the fun birthday things going on. The training runs got done but I went into this long run already wiped. By mile 5 I could feel this wasn’t going to be pretty. 80°F temps and just a plain tired body lead me to cut the last two miles off. It was good decision overall and now I’m taking TWO days off to recover from this intense week! (And choosing not to beat myself up for cutting the run short and struggling through it in general...)

SUNDAY:

Off

TOTAL MILEAGE: 41.56 miles



Let's Connect!



Linking up with Holly and Wendy's Weekly Wrap Up.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Chasing the Sunrise | BUFF® #LiveMoreNow Part 1

Disclaimer: I received three BUFF® products to encourage me to #LiveMoreNow as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

My early morning mental dialogue goes a little something like this:
The 5:00 a.m. alarm is sounding.
"No thank you. Just 5 more minutes."
5 minutes later; it's time to really do this.
"Ugh. I'll run on the treadmill later..."
<mental image of treadmill running with kids all awake>
"Okay, yep. I'm out."
Getting out the door by 5:20 is my "run day" goal though after a spotty night of sleep with our 6 month old I struggle. (and sometimes baby has a different up his onesie sleeve and it's just not possible!)


Despite the kick in the tail it takes to get me out of bed, I have grown to really love the peace of an early morning. I lay my clothes out the night before (in a pile, not a pretty flat runner like below) to save on my "get ready time" before sneaking out the door.

And I mean sneak out the door literally. One peep too loud and our littlest, who sleeps upstairs by us, will be up and my morning run plan is shot.


My early morning gear varies to match whatever weather is coming our way. Now that it's May, I have been running in 30-50°F temps in the morning. A long sleeve shirt or light jacket paired with my BUFF® Polar Thermal Hoodie keeps me warm but not overheated. Shorts are my rule of thumb for +40°F and capris or full length tights for below that. Hats on a rainy morning. Headband or a hat in the wind.

Whew. Gear can really turn into a science!

If you've never heard of BUFF®'s Hoodies before, check them out. They are a handy tool for "hooding the hoodless" like my Boston jacket or long sleeve shirts with a heavyweight fleece material to make them extra cozy. With the right gear, I'm able to enjoy my time outside even when the weather isn't ideal.

BUFF® Polar Thermal Hoodie (Black) - $50

I'm up. I'm dressed. I'm out.

Once out the door, it's the smell of dew on the grass, the chirping birds, rhythmic steps and quiet conversations with God that I enjoy so much.


And this. How can I help but to fall in love with a sky like this?


Sometimes it's 8 speedy miles in before 6:30 am. Other times it's a relaxing 6 or less. That's the start to my morning as a mother runner.

At 6:30 a.m. I'm coming through the door to be greeted by lots of little faces, usually smiling, and my husband of course. I hop in the shower quick and eat a egg & bacon breakfast wrap that my husband made if I'm extra lucky! My hubs heads off to work at 7:00 a.m. and that's when the action really starts.

What kind of action, you ask? More on that to come next week! Stay tuned :)




#Gmas18 Training W12 Recap

Follow along the 16-week journey as I train for my 10th 26.2, the Grandma’s Marathon coming up on June 16, 2018. I look forward to running with fellow BibRave Pros Angie, Amy and Jenn!

MONDAY: 

Off. Nature walk at a nearby State Park.

TUESDAY: 

Easy Effort 6.01 mi, 00:56 @ 09:15 pace feeling good after last week’s bigger mileage. This week is somewhat of a cut back before one more big one next week. Soon to taper and race!

WEDNESDAY: 

(Treadmill) Easy Effort 5 mi, 00:46 @ 09:09 pace run in the afternoon.

THURSDAY

Yasso 800’s 8 mi, 01:03 @ 07:50 avg pace, 800m intervals x 8 (@ 3:39, 3:39, 3:33, 3:35, 3:30, 3:33, 3:36, 4:02). Not sure what happened to that last interval! Woops.

FRIDAY:

Off

SATURDAY:

(Treadmill) Easy Effort 5 mi, 00:46 @ 09:09 pace because I didn’t feel like waking up early on our 6th wedding anniversary! My hubs went to work for the morning, the kids watched a LEGO show while I ran, and we did manage to sneak away for a quick supper tonight. It was great!

SUNDAY:

Long Run 13.1 mi, 01:55 @ 08:47 pace with single stroller and our littlest. Everyone else was asleep so I took the little guy out for a few miles. He fell asleep too and those miles turned into a half marathon. Maybe he DOES like the stroller!


TOTAL MILEAGE: 37.11


What is your trick to getting out of bed early? Coffee? Layout out your gear? A loud alarm?!

Let's Connect!



Linking up with Holly and Wendy's Weekly Wrap Up.

Friday, May 11, 2018

10 Q's for Your Mother Runner Self

Happy Mother's Day weekend to you and/or the special women in your life! When I think of Mother's Day, I am so thankful for my mom and the many influential women God has blessed my life with including my Grandma, my Great Grandma and my "adopted" mom next door.

As my boys are getting older I am SO enjoying the homemade "gifts". Being a mom of three little boys is teaching me so much and greatly deepening my faith in God... mainly because I know I can't pull this off in my own strength! The saying goes "the days are long and years are short" and I'm finding that to be very much true.

The fights over toys, potty training battles and nights of teething are tough but the struggles pale in comparison to the sweet moments. This week my 5-year-old made the below card. It is seriously something I will treasure forever, especially because he decided to make it on his own without any prompting from dad. My mom heart melted!


In honor of Mother's Day weekend, I'm sharing a survey I dug up from the AnotherMotherRunner blog. My answers are below and feel free to share your own answers in the comments or on your own blog!

10 Q's For Your Mother Runner Self

1. Best run ever: Since becoming a mom, the 2016 Blue Ox Marathon has been my best run to date. Partially because it's my post-babies PR at 3:25:36 (still out to beat the 3:22:05 pre-baby PR) and partially because I had just ran a marathon two weeks prior yet managed to run faster in the second marathon. I felt good considering the back-to-back races and was filled with joy when I saw my mom and my boys at the finish line (hubs was in the field).

2. Three words that describe my running: Free. Rejuvenating. Peaceful.

3. My go-to running outfit is: For the Spring through Fall racing season, a tank top and either capris or shorts. Capris are always my choice if rain is in the forecast to avoid chafing!

4. Quirky habit while running: Running until I hit the exact mileage I need on my Garmin, to the .01th of a mile. That means I will run an extra few houses down and circle back home again to make sure I don't "cheat". Keeping myself honest! And I'm sure the neighbors think I'm crazy.

5. Morning, midday, evening: Definitely morning is preferable. The plan is to wake up at 5:00 am, be out and running by 5:20 and back home by 6:30 am. If I sleep through, I will try to run on the treadmill while baby naps and the older kids get to watch a show. That's just way more complicated than waking up early!

6. I won’t run outside when it’s: Severe thunderstorm weather with lightning or hail/tornado potential, blizzards, or an actual temp of below -10°F.

7. Worst injury—and how I got over it: I haven't had any extreme injuries to get over besides some Runner's Knee twinges a few weeks ago. Regular core work and stretching has helped with that.

8. I felt most like a hardcore mother runner when: Running while 39 weeks pregnant in my third pregnancy, thankfully on our basement treadmill, because that would have drawn some crazy looks I'm sure. Honestly nothing has made me feel more "hardcore" than giving birth. It's crazy hard and absolutely beautiful at the same time. A true miracle from the Lord!

9. Next race is: Coming up soon ---> the Grandma's Marathon on June 16th!

10. Potential running goal for 2018: I'm praying about the decision to run one more marathon this Fall. This may be my last chance to run another 26.2 for a year or two. You know, because our baby C will be one year old in November, so that means... possibly time for another baby break next running season. Being a "mother runner" is an absolute joy though pregnancy-childbirth-postpartum-breastfeeding feel like a rollercoaster that I’ve been riding for the past 6 years. I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

Have a blessed Mother’s Day!

(Source: These questions are from a September 2012 post on the AnotherMotherRunner blog. Kickin' it old school!)



#Gmas18 Training W11 Recap

Follow along the 16-week journey as I train for my 10th 26.2, the Grandma’s Marathon coming up on June 16, 2018. I look forward to running with fellow BibRave Pros Angie, Amy and Jenn!

MONDAY: 

Off.

TUESDAY: 

Easy Run 6.01 mi, 00:58 @ 09:34 pace in the rain. I liked it!

WEDNESDAY: 

(Treadmill) Easy Effort 5 mi, 00:48 @ 09:39 pace ran while baby napped and big boys watched the “Magic School Bus”, old school episodes. ;) A treadmill run once a week is working well to break up the 3 run mornings in a row — thankfully baby is getting better at sleeping last 5:30 am! (He’s 6 months old already! I’m crying a little inside... my baby isn’t small anymore)

THURSDAY

Goal Pace 8.01 mi, 01:03 @ 07:55 pace early morning run that was actually on pace (8:00/mile goal) including the warm up and cool down time. Works for me!

FRIDAY:

Off

SATURDAY:

Long Run 20.01 mi, 2:45:29 @ 8:16/mile on a beautiful, 70°F day. Still felt warm but not as bad as last weekend. I had some stomach issues around mile 15 but I blame our drastic temp change. Takes me a while to get acclimated again! Better now than on race day. 20-miler #2 is in the books!


SUNDAY:

Recovery Run 3.1 miles with the two littlers in the double stroller @ 9:47/mile. I love that time to visit with Mr. 2-yr-old while baby enjoys the ride. Happy Mother's Day!

TOTAL MILEAGE: 42.13 miles


Who is someone special you celebrate on Mother's Day?

Let's Connect!



Linking up with Holly and Wendy's Weekly Wrap Up.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Rudy & The Race Across America | Rudy Project Rydon Review

Disclaimer: I received a sneak peek viewing of the documentary GODSPEED and a pair of Rudy Project Rydon sunglasses to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

In case you haven't read my review of GODSPEED yet, I will give you a quick summary of my thoughts: Jerry Schemmel and Brad Cooper, the bicyclists for Team Enduring Hope, were an inspiration because of their faith in God, teamwork and physical/emotional/mental perseverance in the 3,000 miles of The Race Across America. This wasn't just some 12-state joyride. This was a RACE! To read my thoughts on GODSPEED, check out my complete review here.

GODSPEED will be hitting theaters on May 22nd, which is fast approaching, so you should snag some tickets now!


As a BibRave Pro, along with a sneak peak viewing of the upcoming documentary GODSPEED, I also received a pair of Rudy Project Rydon sunglasses to review. Let me give you a quick rundown on Rudy Project, a sponsor of GODSPEED.

Rudy Project, founded in 1985 by Rudy Barbazza in Treviso Italy, was created with a Vision for the world's most technologically advanced sports eyewear. By working in cooperation with athletes from all fields and by listening to what they want and what they need, Rudy Project never stop researching to find the most advanced materials to develop products that elevate the athlete's performance.
"Technically Cool: the two words that can best sum up this Vision; the two words that best express the DNA of each and every design carrying the brand Rudy Project." RudyProjectNA.com


I received the Rudy Project Rydon sunglasses with a White Gloss frame and Multilaser Orange lenses to review. These glasses are super lightweight, at only .85 oz, because they are made of highly advanced materials — carbon, aluminum, magnesium, silcium and titanium.


Rudy Project Rydon sunglasses are lightweight and durable. Sunglasses I have worn in the past are made of primarily plastic and haven't been able to withstand much abuse. Between being sat on by one of the kids or squished in a diaper bag, the life of sunglasses isn't a gentle one. I have been surprised by how durable the Rydon's are, even at such a light weight. The unique combination of materials makes them quite hardy.
"Rydon has been uniquely engineered with a carbonium frame and revolutionary aerospatial aluminum alloy (Kynetium) temples which combine magnesium, silcium and titanium to create an unbelievably lightweight, durable and flexible sunglass."
Which means I'm not worried about sharing my Rydon's with this guy...


Two features of the Rudy Project Rydon's that I want to highlight are the fully adjustable anti-slip temples and adjustable anti-slip nosepads. I wore my Rydon sunglasses on Saturday's long run and it was 75°F which is blazing hot compared to the winter we just came off of.

I sweated like a crazy person and honestly the temperature change just kicked my tail. The good news is my Rydon's performed a whole lot better than I did on this run. The sweat was rolling off my nose but, thanks to the adjustable anti-slip temples and nose pad, my Rydon sunglasses did not!

Explore the Rudy Project website to learn more about the many types of frames and lenses they have available. The photochromic lenses used in the GODSPEED documentary are pretty amazing (they adjust to the light for you -> learn more in Lindsey's review).

The Rudy Project Rydon sunglasses retail for $274.99 and come with Rudy Project's 3-year sunglasses warranty and their lens replacement warranty.  And as May 22nd will be upon us soon be sure to get your tickets to GODSPEED now



#Gmas18 Training W10 Recap

Follow along the 16-week journey as I train for my 10th 26.2, the Grandma’s Marathon coming up on June 16, 2018. I look forward to running with fellow BibRave Pros Angie, Amy and Jenn!

MONDAY: 

Off.

TUESDAY: 

(Treadmill) Fartlek Intervals 1:00 5k pace/1:00 recovery jog x 15 for 5.61 mi, 00:45. Then 10 minutes at MP to end it. This felt HARD! The speed intervals varied from 6:40-7:00/mi pace and started to feel more natural at the end. It’s like “relearning to run fast” because I do zero speedwork during pregnancy. (rightly so — sprinting with a big belly sounds terribly uncomfortable!) Core work after the run.

WEDNESDAY: 

Easy Effort 7.05 mi, 01:06 @ 09:19 pace amongst all the chirping birds. I love it! The temp looked cold but it actually felt fine due to the very light breeze (vs the psycho wind lately).

THURSDAY

(Treadmill) Hill Intervals 5.25 mi, 00:45 back on the treadmill because baby was hungry right as it was time for me to head out this morning. It worked out fine this way since the treadmill is my only source of worthy “hills”. 10 x 1:00 @ 7:30/mile pace + 8% incline with 1:00 recovery jog. The incline and pace combo nearly killed me... I’m wiped!

FRIDAY:

Off... power cleaning/spring cleaning/just plain getting rid of clutter. And a play date with friends in the morning!

SATURDAY:

Long Run 16.01 mi, 02:16 @ 08:27 pace and my first taste of heat acclimation for the year... ha! 75°F was actually quite a shock to the system and I wore sunscreen but still burnt my arms. This was a total fail as a “fast finish” long but I was just glad to cover the miles! I need more heat practice before the race.

SUNDAY:

Recovery run 3.13 mi, 00:30 @ 09:35 pace with double stroller and boy #2 & #3 so #1 and dad could make waffles together. This morning was beautiful! I’m stiff from the speed work this week and yesterday’s run.

TOTAL MILEAGE: 37.05 miles


What do you use for sun protection? Glasses, hat, sunscreen, all or nothing?

Let's Connect!



Linking up with Holly and Wendy's Weekly Wrap Up.