Busy Bee!

Before I begin my post, I just want to say that the response I received about my sister's interview was fantastic!!! I received messages and comments, applauding her talents! I am so glad that many of you enjoyed it and I hope that it will inspire you to try something new!

Old pic of us hula hooping together :)

Anyway, on to running! I have finally hit the taper portion of my training, which has given me some time to update you all on what I have been up to!

First, I want to express how well I have been doing. I felt like I hit a rough patch there for several weeks: injury, exhaustion, and then some! But ever since I decided to let the pressure off and stop challenging myself beyond what I was capable of, things have been going my way!

Taking a break in my 20 miler to warm up!
I will not go into too much detail of the last two weeks of training (sorry about missing those posts!), but I will give you the schedule I followed.

Week 12

6 Miles1 Mile AM1 Mile AM
 5 Miles PM
1 Mile AM
5 Miles PM
3.1 Miles PMRest20 Miles

Week 13

5 MilesRest1 Mile AM
 5 Miles PM
1 Mile AM
5 Miles PM
1 Mile AM
3.1 Miles PM
1 Mile AM16 Miles

Both my long runs went decently well. Though, the 20 miler was unfortunately broken up due to snow. I ran 12 miles inside, took a lunch break, then ran 8 miles out when the snow and wind had stopped. But my 16 miler went better than I anticipated!

I was thankful to get a full week of outdoor runs in as well! The temps finally started creeping up and melting all the snow. So I was able to get some sun as well as go on running dates with Peter! He achieved a his best 5 mile time yet: 48:46!

I hope to get a few more outdoor runs in before the marathon because after the race has passed, my running schedule will be next to nothing. I will rest for a short time, do a few short runs here and there, but in the 10 days that follow, I will have my surgery, which will leave me unable to run for 2 weeks. Though, I am already considering bending the rules. Not recommended!!!

Anyway, the other half of my busy life, is wedding planning! In the past 2 and a half weeks, I said "yes" to a dress, hired an officiant & photographer, and we may have figured out the caterer. A lot of BIG items have been crossed off which is a MAJOR relief! Hopefully it should be smooth sailing from here...but from what I understand, it won't be. ;-)

Have you decided to try hoop dancing since the interview with my sister?

How are you doing with your training? Are you feeling good? Bad?

Any upcoming weddings in your life? Any interesting locations, catering choices...?

Update Soon!

I have had so much to do with little time to discuss it! An update will be coming soon!

Interview With Ashley (My Sister)

Maybe running is not your thing. That is fine! We all differ when it comes to what interests us! BUT finding an activity that gets you moving is important! I believe that everyone has one physical activity that is made for them.

Take my sister, Ashley, for example. If I would ask her to go for a run with me, she would probably scoff in response, pick up one (or two) of her many hula hoops and go the other direction. Yes, a hula hoop. This ain't your grandma's type of hula hooping. My sister is a hoop dancer. BIG difference!!! See here!

Anyway, just to give you a taste of what keeps my sister active, I thought I would ask her a few questions. Who knows! Maybe your calling is hoop dancing....OR pole dancing! Keep reading!

What was the first physical activity that you were interested in? What made it so appealing? 
I threw shot put & discus in high school. I was interested because my dad was also a thrower on the track & field team. Plus, it was the only sport where you were not required to run during practice! Haha! I hated running. (How are we related, right?)

How were you introduced to hoop dancing? Did you imagine that you were going to stick with it for this long?
I first saw it at a concert I attended. I was mesmerized by the beauty and flow. Even though I was never a dancer, or was able to hula hoop, I thought "I have to learn how to do this!" I bought my own hoop and instantly became obsessed! I had no idea it would become such a big part of my life. Five years later, here I am with a hoop in my hand.

Do you consider hoop dancing a great exercise? Did you see any physical changes with your body once you began?
Absolutely! When I began hooping, I lost 20 pounds in 3 months! It has stayed off ever since!

What parts of your body do you find it works out the most?
Hooping tones your entire body, but focuses on your core muscles. That means, FLAT TUMMY!! I must also mention I have experienced not only physical changes, but mental and spiritual changes as well. Many would agree that hooping is a workout for your mind, body and soul!

Sometimes, we tend to get sick of our regular workouts and struggle to continue. Have you ever become sick of hoop dancing over the years? What did you do to spice it up and make it fun again?
I cannot say that I have ever gotten sick of hooping. There are always new tricks to learn, like hooping with fire. Or there are products on the market like LED hoops. It keeps it fun and exciting. Plus, it just feels good to dance.

Name 2 things you love most about hoop dance.
 1. I love that is a fun exercise. I actually want to do it. It never feels like a chore.
2. It turned me from a shy girl with low self esteem to who I am today: Confident, proud, outgoing.

Has there been any fitness/physical activities that you tried and never found interest in? Why?
The gym!!! I have gone a few times but never wanted to go back for more. It felt like a job and was boring!

You have recently picked up a new activity: pole dancing. What about it sparked your interest?
I saw the music video "Set It Off" by Diplo. I knew I needed to learn how to do that!

Some people find pole dancing to be "inappropriate" or they immediately relate the activity to stripping. What would you tell those people? 
There is a difference between being erotic and being sexy. To me, pole fitness is sexy. I see that most women who take these classes either want a fun workout or are looking for a way to feel sexy! I'm tellin' ya, you become very strong and toned!!!

What physical changes did you notice when you took on pole dancing? 
My strength improved quickly! I even gained weight from building additional muscle. At least, that's what I tell myself! My legs and arms became noticeably toned as well.

Recently, you incorporated both hoop dancing and pole dancing into one performance, which added a unique twist to an average pole dance. Do you have any plans to incorporate more talents into your performances? 
I may have a few tricks up my sleeve!

BONUS: What are your fitness goals for 2014? 
I began doing yoga in September and plan to continue doing so. I also started Pilates this month! I would like to try my hand at aerial silks and the aerial hoop in the near future!


Would you ever hoop or pole dance?

Have any questions you would like to ask Ashley? Or comments? I am sure she would LOVE to hear from you!

Marathon Training: Week 11

I have concluded that 2014 is going to be one of the busiest years of my life. My schedule has begun filling up at a rate I was not prepared for. On top of marathon training, I am wedding planning and beginning to look into a career path. Big life changes!

First, let me start with my training week. After my foot giving me grief for a few weeks, the pain has FINALLY lifted. Sure, it had let up a good bit a couple of weeks ago, but I have reached a point where I am waking up in the morning (when the discomfort was at its worst) without an ounce of pain! Running has never felt better.

6 MilesRest1 Mile AM
1 Mile PM
1 Mile AM
5 Miles PM
1 Mile AM
5 Miles? PM
1 Mile AM14.35 Miles

Anyway, I started my week with 3 broken up runs on Sunday. Although I was in desperate need of a rest day, I thought going on a few easy runs would help work the lactic acid out of my sore muscles.

I started with one mile, rested for a bit, then upped to 3 miles. After another resting period, I did 2 more to round off the day at 6. It really did help. I started out achy, but after the third session, I could resume walking up and down the stairs again. So I would definitely recommend running easy the day after a long run, even if you are sore. I think it helps!

Monday, I took my well-deserved rest day. I resumed normal training on Tuesday with 1 mile in the AM and a hair over 5 miles in the evening while playing the Pandora Treadmill Game. On Wednesday, I only had time for a mile in the morning, and one in the evening, both focusing on speed. Then, on Thursday, even though I attempted to do 5 miles all at once, every time I would try changing the speed or incline, I accidentally pressed one of the programmed workouts. That would end my run and delete my stats. After the 3rd time of doing it, I just ran 1.5 miles at 7+ MPH. I was just angry and wanted to finish.

This past Saturday, my long run was 14 miles. I did not even keep pace in mind. It honestly stopped being my priority after hurting my foot. My most recent goal is to complete my runs just feeling comfortable. I finished few minutes below my normal pace, but did not care. I was done, happy, and even ran a little bit more than anticipated. So that was a win in my opinion.

Now, on to the life stuff! As you may know, I recently was engaged and am planning an October 4th wedding. Just in the last few weeks, I have been working like crazy to get things together! The biggest accomplishment so far was finding our venue. Originally, we were going to use our own property to have the ceremony and reception, but I found myself losing sleep over the parking situation. So, we decided on a vineyard nearby.

I am a farm girl and the thought of getting married in a huge barn tickles my fancy! And hello! Wine!

Anyway, we took a tour of the barn yesterday and I immediately fell in love. I put down the deposit that day. My wedding is officially going to be fabulous now!

I will have more details this week, but for now, I want to hear about you!

Do you run the day after a long run?

How did your last long run go? How far was it? 

What is your favorite wine?

Marathon Training: Week 10 - Confidence Has Returned

I could not believe it. I actually finished a 20 miler on Saturday.

I was more impressed by the fact that not only did I do 20 miles, but I did them all on the road. I have NEVER run more than 14 miles on pavement. All of my 20 milers have been on the C&O Canal because it has little to no hills to climb. That and I HATE sharing the road with cars. I just never have felt 100% safe. Still, I knew that hills and road time were necessary. My marathon will be on the roads and it will have hills (one that is particularly nasty at mile 6 from what I have read).

Thanks, Google Maps
I was also surprised that I was able to run 20 miles when my longest run during training was only 14. I guess I just had a lot of pent up energy after having sporadic time off this last month. It went really well though.

I started the run from my driveway just before 8am. It was quite cold, but I knew that I would be thankful I wore shorts and a light long sleeved shirt. It was to be a high of 45, which was a relief after all the cold weather we have had! Anyway, my intention was to have an incredibly slow 5 mile warm up. I was not sure how my body would handle the road with having another 2 weeks sticking with treadmill only. Well, the planned pace was net met. I was actually ahead of pace the entire run!

At mile 14, I reached my parent's house, where I took a quick bathroom break, inhaled a Nature Valley Bar, and met up with Peter to finish out the final six. This is about the time that my thighs started to burn and my exhaustion started to catch up with me, but I still had some fuel left in the tank. It also helped that I had my fiance running at my side. :)

I finished in 3 hours and 45 minutes. I was quite satisfied with that number. I relaxed that evening with a Chipotle Chicken Burrito Bowl and some cocktails.

I am SUPER sore today, but other than that, recovery has been relatively decent. I will get more into that in another post.

Anyway, here is a review of my week!

Rest5 MilesRest5 Miles5 MilesRest20 Miles

Enjoy your Super Bowl Sunday, my friends!

Did you do a long run this weekend?

Do you try to plan your long runs on less hilly routes?

What usually hurts after your long runs?
Professional Blog Designs by pipdig