Friday, September 28, 2018

Adding Insult to Injury

The title for this post is a little dramatic but I'll cut to the chase. I'm in a funk.

It's just little things. Daily attitude struggles in our house, especially last week. The typical tiredness of mothering littles. This injury lingering for the past 5 weeks. Race week for the race I can't run. A Boston rejection added a little. Maybe it's still postpartum hormones.

Just little things adding up, nothing to complain about yet I'm still feeling worn. You know how it takes an extra effort to look on the bright side and choose to live each day with a smile? Though I know I have so much to be thankful for, I'm just feeling tired of fighting for optimism. Every day I'm reminding myself of how good God is to me. Every day! 

Yet I'm still struggling in this funk of being tired, feeling snappy and drowning in things that should be done. (<-- Maybe that's the problem; pressure on myself that doesn't need to be there.)

Anyways.

In running news last week (along with all the national news drama on top of that... uffda... it's a mess), the BAA announced the 2019 Boston Marathon 4:52 cut-off and that they are tightening the BQ standards by 5 minutes for 2020.

That means female runners in my age group will need a 3:30 to qualify, which I think is reasonable and a good move for the race. It's much better to lower the qualifying time rather than continue to increase the registration cut-off. Especially for those shooting for their first Boston, I can see how disheartening it is to cross the finish line of your first BQ, celebrating being #BostonBound, only to be turned down later! A lower qualifying standard is much more straight forward.


Though I thought I had no intention of ever returning to Boston, I registered on a whim last week with a 3:32:17 from Grandma's Marathon in June. The idea of sightseeing in Boston with my husband this time (my mom and I went last time) sounded like so much fun for a kid-free anniversary trip, and of course running the race is nothing less than epic. But alas, with only a QT-3:43, I was rejected.

Should that get me down? It shouldn't... I wasn't training for that goal and I was very happy with that finish time. But I won't lie, no one likes to be rejected and that certainly includes me. I felt disappointed. Can I blame that on postpartum hormones, too? Eh, okay I will.

And that brings us to now.

Race week of the race that I can't run because of a crazy injury 5 weeks ago. If it weren't for running with a dear friend of mine, I wouldn't bother going to the half marathon tomorrow. Though I should just be thankful I can even jog a half marathon! Hopefully I can. Let's not put the cart before the horse.

As I've thought about this little funk of mine, I've realized that God can use this time of injury and failure somehow for His glory, even on this blog, because reading about a person's successes is one thing but seeing a person handle adversity shows the true colors, character and where their faith stands.

I wake up every morning praying for extra patience to lovingly care for and teach our sweet THREEnager and FIVE-teen-year-old, and our now walking 10-month-old. My ministry to my family and homeschooling our children is my most important calling, and I know I need to choose joy and live in God's grace every day to do this well. To set my heart on these eternal relationships.

I have lost most any confidence I had in my ability run and any goals I had but that may recover in time too. Healing from this illiopsoas injury is the first step for now and then I hope to move on to a Spring marathon. I ordered Lauren Fleshman's Believe Training Journal and hope to chronicle my rehabbing process and return back to training via that. Isn't it cute? Cute is always motivating.


Now to just keep living each day in faith and for His glory, seeing the joy in the every day life. This song came on the radio today and my three-year-old said it's his favorite. I think it's my new favorite too.
I'm tired
I'm worn
My heart is heavy
From the work it takes to keep on breathing
I've made mistakes
I've let my hope fail
My soul feels crushed
By the weight of this world
And I know that you can give me rest
So I cry out with all that I have left
Let me see redemption win
Let me know the struggle ends
That you can mend a heart that's frail and torn
I want to know a song can rise
From the ashes of a broken life
And all that's dead inside can be reborn
'Cause I'm worn
And my prayers are wearing thin
I'm worn even before the day begins
I'm worn I've lost my will to fight
I'm worn so heaven come and flood my eyes
- "Worn" by Tenth Avenue North

Let's Connect!



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

Friday, September 21, 2018

How I Fuel | Gatorade Endurance Review

Disclaimer: I received the Gatorade Endurance Energy Gels and Endurance Formula in exchange for my 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!

As a BibRave Pro, I received another round of the Gatorade Endurance New Flavor Pack. I reviewed these flavors in June and I'm back again for more because, yes, it's that good!

Being an injured runner and all, my most "intense" training sessions now take place on the stationary bike. I'm okay with that for now as I am seeing progress as my injury heals and I'm still able to cross train and run lightly.

Here is how I use the Gatorade Endurance Powder and Gels in my everyday workouts:


I use the Endurance Energy Gel for long workouts (1+ hour) because they are easy to carry in my pocket and offer a tasty mango boost of carbohydrate energy. When I ran 2+ hour long runs, I stuck to fueling every 45 minutes or so with a gel. That's just personal preference really. The key with gels is to make sure you take them with water, not a sports drink! (As all you runners or endurance athletes know already) 

The Gatorade Endurance Energy Gels are so light and smooth in texture that I don't feel like I need to drink water with them but I do just as a precaution. I would rather play it safe than be in GI distress. At 80 calories per gel, the Endurance Energy Gels pack about 20 less calories than gels I have used in the past. The upside of that is this gel feel is much lighter while other gels can feel like you're sucking down a tube of toothpaste!


The Gatorade Endurance Thirst Quencher Powder is something I use pre-workout when I head out early in the morning with no time for breakfast, during-workout while running or biking and sometimes post-workout if I feel like I sweated buckets and need to re-hydrate extra well.

While I don't usually like sports drinks, the watermelon flavor of this Thirst Quencher Powder has me hooked! It's a nice balance of sweet with a little "zing". Not sour really, just a zing. Think Jolly Rancher Watermelon flavor. It's refreshing and drinking it first thing in the morning before a run sits well with me.

I mix 2 scoops per my water bottle because I like a little stronger flavor and that's about 90 calories to run on. It's REALLY good!


The Endurance New Flavor Pack is available for $52.99 as a one-time purchase on the Gatorade website and shipping is currently free on orders over $50. That includes a 32oz canister of Watermelon Endurance Thirst Quencher Powder and a pack of 21 Mango Endurance Energy Gel (1.3oz per gel).

How do you fuel? Are you a "gel person"?


GF 1/2Marathon Training W11

Follow my journey as a I train for the Grand Forks Marathon coming up at the end of September. This is my 11th marathon but first time using Hansons Marathon Method for training!  Injured at training Week 7 and now rehabbing + maintaining fitness for the half marathon.


SUNDAY:

10.23 mi W11D1 Cycling + McMillan Runner’s Core Phase 1

MONDAY: 

W11D2 (Treadmill) Easy Run 5 mi 00:50 09:54 pace feeling good and getting more comfortable.

TUESDAY: 

W11D3 00:25 Runner's Yoga by Ekhart Yoga (YouTube). On a whim, I registered (not to be confused with "got accepted"!) for the 2019 Boston Marathon with only a -3:43 cushion for my qualifying time. Boston would be an amazing trip for just the hubs and I to go on (the 3 kiddos are old enough stay with Gma & Gpa AND I'm not pregnant!). Yes, just us two alone! But... downside is Boston's applicant field is apparently huge this year. The cutoff last year was -3:23 and it's supposedly going to be -4:00+ this year.


WEDNESDAY: 

W11D4 Easy Run 3 mi 00:30 09:53 pace outside early this morning. I can tell my groin/pelvic/leg (whatever it is that I should call this) injury is healing up, though I could use more time off running to get back to 100%. It feels very similar to tendonitis that I have had in the past . Running slow feels best and I think it's time for more biking/core work to finish the week.


THURSDAY

W11D5 Cycling 10 mi 00:30 20.0mph pace at hard effort (7 resistance) followed by McMillan Runner's Core (P1).

FRIDAY:

W11D6 Easy Run 4.19 mi 00:42 09:58 pace with double stroller. E rode bike with us for the first mile but he ran out of “gas” quickly. My hubs was home after so I dropped him off and ran 3 more with the littles. 11:08, 10:40, 9:17, 9:00.

SATURDAY:

W11D7


Let's Connect!



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

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Be Brilliant | Brilliant Reflective Review

Disclaimer: I received the Brilliant Reflective Family Pack in exchange for my 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!

Here we are, saying goodbye to our long, sunny Summer days. A little sad isn't it? I always say, if it weren't for Winter being so close behind it, Fall would be my favorite season of all. It's beautiful. The leaves changing, the delicious pumpkin-flavored everything, the perfect temps.

Then, tragically, it flies into six months of winter weather and I'm just not ready for that.

The sunlight hours are shortening and that means my morning runs (when I CAN run) are completed 100% in the dark. No sweet sunrise moments here. It also means that the kiddos are still up and playing outside as the sun is setting, if they happen to evade bedtime long enough.

As a BibRave Pro, I received an assortment of Brilliant Reflective Strips including stick-on, iron-on and a family pack to brighten up the dark months head.


Brilliant Reflective offers both Stick-On and Iron-On strips, and I have had great results with both (this isn't my first rodeo with either kind!). Both types of strips are made with 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material which makes them very bright — visible from up to 500 ft — and highly durable — waterproof and removable if needed.

The Stick-On Reflective Strips are ideal for placing on bikes, strollers, helmets, dog leashes/collars and pretty much anything else you can think of. Simply peel off the backing and apply. I used the stick-on strips for my kids' bike helmets and bikes.


The Iron-On Strips are designed for permanent application to clothing, bags, and pretty much anything else you can iron. Simply following the directions outlined in the packaging makes application a breeze.

This is the only reason I ever use my iron. Can you tell? (guilty as charged)

According to the Brilliant Reflective website, the iron-on strips are machine washable for up to 50 washes. The key is to get the initial ironing job done correctly the first time. When ironing my running top (in the below picture), I must not have had my iron hot enough and one strip did peel loose slightly during the run. Before throwing it in the wash, I quickly re-adhered it with my iron and VOILA.

Now it's stuck for good!


I used my iron-on strips with this outfit and took it out for a spin the next morning. I'm just glowing, right?


Here we are, the kids and I looking brilliant in our Brilliant Reflective strips. Yes, this does mean they were outside past bedtime (again...) but we're making memories here, okay? (And we're "helping" dad build a backyard treehouse)


The Brilliant Reflective Family Packs are $14.95 for 10 Stick-On shapes with four color options available. The kids loved the shapes and of course they fought over who got the reflective lightning bolt! The elephant stick-on was the second favorite :)

Use discount code "BRP30" for 30% OFF the Brilliant Reflective Segmented and Family Packs and be sure to stop by #BibChat on September 25th for a chance to win your own pack!

Guess who got the lightning bolt? Yeah. This guy.

What is your FAVORITE thing about Fall... Coffee? Cool Temps? Races?

GF 1/2Marathon Training W10

Follow my journey as a I train for the Grand Forks Marathon coming up at the end of September. This is my 11th marathon but first time using Hansons Marathon Method for training!  Injured at training Week 7 and now rehabbing + maintaining fitness for the half marathon.


SUNDAY:

W10D1 Cycling 10.3 mi, 00:30 @ 20.6mph pace.

MONDAY: 

W10D2 Cycling 10.51 mi, 00:30 @ 21.0mph pace (resistance @ 6)

TUESDAY: 

W10D3 00:25 Runner's Yoga by Ekhart Yoga (YouTube) after being adjusted at the Chiropractor that morning.

WEDNESDAY: 

W10D4 Cycling with Easy/Hard intervals 10.34 mi, 00:30 @ 20.7mph pace + McMillan Runner's Core - Phase 1

THURSDAY

W10D5 Easy Run. Yes, RUN!!! 3.1 mi, 00:30 @ 09:44 pace. That wasn't exactly my original plan but I was bored with the bike and felt like an easy run in the rain. It had been a while since my last run and I wasn't sure how it would go. The dog came for the first .5 mile, then he was over it. Dropped him off at home and kept going.

I ran the majority of the time and even snuck into the 8-min mile zone! I'm feeling big improvements but it's clear whatever ligaments/tendons/muscle were injured need more time to heal. The plan is to keep biking mixed with core work and yoga; then try another test run next week. The victory in this is that there was no technical "pain" but I do feel some tightening as the run goes on and stiff post-run. Seeing small improvements like this makes me feel much more hopeful!

FRIDAY:

W10D6 Cycling 10.69 mi, 00:30 @ 21.4mph pace at an easy-ish pace while feeding baby banana chunks and baking a pizza. Multi-tasking! + McMillan Runner’s Core Phase 1 that night.

SATURDAY:

W10D7 Easy Run 6.01 mi, 00:59 @ 09:47 pace with double stroller (but one kid). Went well even with the wind and I didn’t have any pain in my leg/groin injury! I kept the pace easy and felt better as the run went on and I warmed up. I do feel still and really cautious still but VERY glad to be back running!


Let's Connect!



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

Friday, September 7, 2018

Doo Good 5k | Scooby Doo Virtual Run Series

Disclaimer: I received a complementary entry into the Scooby Doo Virtual Run Series in exchange for my 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!

My occasional running buddy is quite handsome. He's a great listener, never complains and pretty much follows me wherever I go. Like a puppy, you could say. (And my husband even likes him!)

Here he is. 11 years old (or 77 in human years) and still looking like a pup, minus his one blind eye:


With Saul not being a young pup anymore and me recovering from an injury, we have been going out for quite a few slow and easy walk/jogs lately. During marathon training, I don't take him with me but this is a great chance to get out as a team. Partly because I enjoy the company when I'm moving slowly and partly because he can always use a little extra attention. And now because we've got our very own race to train for, together!

As a BibRave Pro, I (along with Saul) received a complimentary entry into the Scooby Doo Virtual Run Series. This is my very first "virtual run" experience - and Saul's first race ever. This month's part of the Scooby-Doo Run Series Challenge is the Doo Good 5k which gives you from September 1-30 to complete the 5k distance at a pace that works for you.


The cool thing about the Scooby Doo Virtual Run Series is that it can be completed at any location, time, or place of your choosing.

Joining in is simple! All you need to do is sign up for one or both of the races (Scoobtober 5k/10k is next month), complete the distance anytime during September 1 - 30 and post your photo to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtags #ScoobyDooRun and #DooGood.

Running with a dog isn't a requirement, of course, but it certainly makes it more fun!


As I mentioned above, we're old and injured, so Saul and I broke up our 5k into two runs: first a 2-mile run/walk and then a 1.1 mile run/walk with the baby + stroller. We successfully covered the miles at a pace and in a place that worked for us. He only needed two potty breaks and a water stop!


After completing the race, humans will receive an Official Race Shirt, Doo Good Virtual 5K Finisher Medal and Digital Finisher Certificate. Canine participants also receive their own race swag that includes Doo Good Dog Bandana and Doo Good Virtual 5K Doggie Medal/Tag!



Registration for the Doo Good Virtual 5k is $39 for humans and a $15 Add-On for any canine participants. In support of the Scooby-Doo "Doo Good" campaign, a portion of your registration will be donated to the Best Friends Animal Society. Click HERE to register. 

Use discount code BIBRAVE for 10% off registration!



Have you ran a "virtual race" before?


GF Marathon Training W9

Follow my journey as a I train for the Grand Forks Marathon coming up at the end of September. This is my 11th marathon but first time using Hansons Marathon Method for training!


SUNDAY:

W9D1 Doo Good 5k, 3.14 mi, 00:42 @ 13:21 pace. Scooby Doo Virtual Run Series: “Doo Good 5k” with our border collie, Saul. We walk/jogged the first 2 miles and finished our the last 1.1 mile with the littlest boy + stroller.

I’m feeling stiff in my groin/hip but it’s not painful. The stride is starting to feel more natural as the days go by. Saul is an old dog and enjoys his walk breaks :)

MONDAY: 

W9D2 Cycling 20.61 mi, 01:00 @ 20.6mph pace (at "5" resistance on the bike, whatever that means) to replace what should have been a speed workout. I miss what it felt like to run effortlessly... as now every stride seems just different. The stationery bike has been a nice substitute to keep my cardio going. I really don't have any pain now, just discomfort/stiffness while I jog. At least daily life isn't a pain and I feel like I will be back to running in not long. If I CAN run the marathon, maybe my cardio will still be decent. Hoping so.

TUESDAY: 

W9D3 Runner’s Yoga 00:25 with Ekhart Yoga on YouTube

WEDNESDAY: 

W9D4 Easy Run 1.3 mi, 00:13:04 @ 10:03 pace with the dog. My goal was to run 1 without walk intervals and it went really well. The right groin/hip is stiff and I feel a bit “cautious” still while striding, but I’m just SO happy I could run without pain! All of the prayers have been appreciated!

W9D4 Cycling 20 mi, 01:02 @ 19.3mph pace during baby’s afternoon nap and big kid quiet time.

THURSDAY

W9D5 Easy Run 3.11 mi, 00:37 @ 11:48 pace early this morning. Started with a .25 mile warm up walk and then joggers on and off after. Still stiff (maybe part from injury, part from biking?) but no pain. I’m keeping it slow until I start feeling more confident on that leg again.

W9D5 Cycling 8.08 mi, 00:25 @ 19.4mph pace (resistance 4). Quads were still worn out from yesterday!

FRIDAY:

W9D6 Easy Run 3 mi, 00:36 @ 12:01 pace followed by easy cycling. The run/some walking was pain-free but I could tell I was tightening up near the end. That helped me to make a decision on the GF marathon at least - I’m dropping down to the half and running with a friend, if I can keep up. I plan on taking it slow and walking as needed.

W9D6 Cycling 9.3 mi

SATURDAY:

TBD

Let's Connect!



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