Surgery and a Few More Goals for 2014

My surgery was a breeze and seemed to go smoother than my last. Compared to the several hours we spent at Meritus Hospital in July, we spent only 2 hours at the Robinwood Surgery Center. They were great at getting me in and out.

Like before, they put me under anesthesia and in the blink of an eye, I woke up in recovery. This time, I was in a little bit more pain than before. As opposed to the doctor taking out a smaller, more restricted portion of my cervix, they were taking out from all over. So any time I sat down, went to stand, or use the rest room, I would cringe. And still do. But the severity of it has worn off with time.

I am still groggy from the lingering anesthesia in my system (excuse my grammatical and spelling errors), but I am feeling good today! REALLY good! I did not get such a satisfying feeling the day after my first surgery. This has given me hope that all the pre-cancerous cells are gone and maybe this is the way I am supposed to feel. After having these abnormalities in my body for over 3 years, I may have forgotten what it feels like to be fully healthy and this could be it! Maybe the times where I have struggled to become motivated or be active was just the bad cells bringing me down. Maybe this entire time, I have not been the Lindsey I truly am! Oh, the possibility of this creates a fire of enthusiasm deep within my soul!

With that being said, there are some goals that I want to add to 2014. My current are more related to my running, but because I have a fresh outlook and a drive to be the best Lindsey I can be, a happy, HEALTHY, and strong Lindsey, I have some non-running related goals to add.

Photo Credit:
  1. Try Crossfit. I don't have any interest in becoming an overly muscular women, but I do yearn to be stronger in every muscle I house, especially my butt! In looking at some of these women who do crossfit, their bodies are everything I could imagine wanting mine to be. So once I am well enough to start exercising again, I want to try a beginners 30 day crossfit routine. I found this one and pinned to my new Crossfit board (a work in progress). This seems to fit well with my running routine and will not take up an entire evening. So be on the lookout for blog posts following my progress and please, try it with me!!!
  2. Homemade Food. My diet is pretty decent. I live an 80/20 lifestyle (eat healthy 80% of the week, and indulge in your favorites 20% of the week). But most of my 80% healthy are store-bought, packaged, and sprinkled in unnecessary ingredients to preserve your food. So why not find the time to make your own stuff? Not only will your body thank you, but so will your wallet. I am starting with just a few items, like whole wheat bread, bagels, cheese, and almond butter. I buy these items frequently (with exception of the almond butter...I buy peanut butter), so why not make them myself and save a few dollars? I am actually starting this today! I am off work and may as well use this time to start! Recipes coming soon!
  3. Drink More Water!!! I must say, I am getting better with this. Ever since I started using Arbonne Wellness Products (a whole other post in itself), I have learned the importance of drinking water more often. It is so simple to just fill up a cup of water and chug. But if you are like me, you just don't do it nearly as often as you should! This leads to water retention (BLOAT!). Not to mention, your performance decreases!! Nothing like being on a run, dehydrated and there's not a fountain in sight. If only you drank more water!

These have all been added to my "2014 Goals Page" and I will be sure to keep you updated on everything and of course, the outcome of my surgery as soon as I have my post-op on the 7th!

Until then, stay strong!!!

Have you ever tried Crossfit? How was your experience? Any noticeable changes in your appearace?

What is your favorite HEALTHY homemade food to make? IE Bread, cheese, pasta, spreads, etc. Share your recipe and maybe I will share on my blog!

What are your tips to drinking plenty of water each day?

My Last Meal

Despite feeling great enough to run every day for the last 5 days, I felt the effects of over-training. Though, there was no pain or injury associated (thank god!), it showed itself in the form of weight gain. After running a marathon on Saturday and following 16 weeks of dedicated training, my body decided to show that I needed a break.

A couple of pounds is not too much of a concern...I don't feel sluggish or pudgy. Besides, I have been feeling good enough to run and have enjoyed every mile that Peter and I have done. I have wanted to take advantage of this time. Besides, today was my last day for a couple of weeks.

Tomorrow is surgery day. I will be at the surgery center at 6 am and should be home by 9. I am forbidden from heavy lifting or strenuous activities, like running, of course. I plan to spend the first 2 days on the couch, catching up on The Vampire Diaries and Lindsay.

But after that, if I am feeling up to it, I may start walking or doing some yoga. Yet if this turns out anything like my last surgery, walking will take my breath away. Peter did bring up a good point though. My last surgery was mid-July and the heat was pretty unbearable. This time, the temperatures should be quite cool. Hopefully that will help! I want to be ready to go in 2 weeks to ready myself for the Hershey 10k on April 13th.

Anyway, I just enjoyed my last meal of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream (not helping the weight gain issue) and am ready to go, but I still have several hours to go. It will come before you know it!

I will surely send out an update soon!

Running Just To Run!


I have been running non-stop! The only days I have taken off since the marathon were Sunday and Wednesday. Every other day, Peter and I have visited the canal, taking full advantage of the warmth and sunshine!

 I must also mention that there's a HUGE difference between running to train and running just to run. Though I would never give up the last 16 weeks of training (they were a life changer), I do love running without having an end goal. It feels more like playtime rather than homework.

And today was the first Saturday that I did not run a typical "long run". Instead, Peter and I ran 5 miles while enjoying our surroundings.

Though Peter and I are do in for a rest day, we intend on getting out there tomorrow. At that point, I may as well run on Monday as well. Once Tuesday rolls around, no strenuous running for 2 weeks. Ahh!

I am just glad to have nearly hit 100 miles for the month, which was really a goal for me. I wasn't sure if I was going to get there. I will get up to the 150s-170s again soon though!!

Do you always run with a goal, or run just to run? 

What running did you get into this weekend?

Marathon Withdraw

I am still on that marathon high. I guess getting my hands on all the pictures (yes, I bought them) has kept the memories very fresh!

My FAVORITE. Gotta get this printed

Surprisingly, I have not had to take too much downtime. I did not run the day after the race, but ran a 5k on the treadmill Monday and 4 miles on Tuesday. I contemplated running tonight, but decided that I needed another day off. Especially when I have every intention on running every day from Thursday to Tuesday (the day of my surgery).

Running has felt great and I am pleasantly surprised. I expected my workouts this week to be a struggle, but I am happy that they have gone so well. Especially since these are the last few runs I will have for a couple of weeks. Luckily, the weather should be nice up until surgery day. So Peter and I have planned to run every evening after work. We also will run Saturday, Sunday, and after work Monday. Hell, I have considered getting a mile run in on the morning of my surgery.

Then I have 2 weeks of inactivity in front of me. Hopefully less so I can get back on track for one of my favorite races, the Hershey 10k, which is on April 14th.

From last year's Hershey 10k
I did great when I ran the Krumpe's 5k run only weeks after my first surgery in July. So this distance should be tolerable after being inactive, as well. I will also have Peter running with me, which will help me get through it. Though, I believe he will put me in the dust. He is now consistently running below a 10 minute mile and though I usually can run below 9 in a race, I will more than likely be a slow poke at Hershey. Oh well, can't have a great race every time.

Not after having an awesome marathon!!!

Crossing the finish line with a smile!
Sorry guys, you will be hearing about this marathon up to the point I start training for another.

How long do you wait after a marathon to run again?

Will I see any of you at the Hershey 10k?

Race Recap: Rock 'n' Roll USA Marathon!!!!!!!!!!

It has been a while since I wrote a race recap! Well, my 16 weeks of training began the same week I did the Turkey Trot 5k, so I was too busy to get involved in another race.

Anyway, this is going to be a big update, so let's get started!

I arrived in DC on Friday afternoon to attend the Rock 'n' Roll USA Expo. After having issues arriving at Lot 8 at the Armory (we rarely come to DC), we finally made it! This Expo was mandatory to attend as it was the only opportunity for runners to pick up their race packets and VIP passes. And they must lore you into buying everything running related.

As much as I wanted to buy everything I saw, I limited it to a pair of shoes I had already been saving up for.

These are the Brooks PureGrit 2s I normally get, only this time, I bought them in Grey/Orange. I definitely prefer the green, but I could not pass up a 10% discount. So I bought them knowing I would love them regardless of color. I also bought Peter's first pair of Brooks (he got the Cascadia 5s) so I could qualify for the VIP bathrooms at the beginning of the race. But more on that later....

After the Expo, we checked into our hotel, The Liaison Capital Hill Hotel. It was probably the ritziest hotel I have stayed in (which may not be saying much). But it was very comfy! My only gripe was that it did not have a mini fridge or microwave!!!

Once I figured out my running outfit...

...we walked to Union Station to grab Chipotle. I got the chicken burrito bowl, as I always do. I could not believe that my meal was cheaper in DC than in Hagerstown. WTF?

After enjoying our meals while watching Who's Line on TV, I eventually fell asleep. I was really surprised at how good I slept even with being so nervous!!! I slept so deeply that I even had a dream (I rarely ever dream...or at least, remember my dreams). I had run the marathon and that it was so unbelievably easy. I finished without pain in 4:44, which would be an amazing time for me since my goal was to finish in under 5 hours.

Then...I woke up. It was 4 am and I haven't even left the hotel to run. Damn...Good dream though

I got ready quicky...ate a banana flavored bagel, some oatmeal, and enjoyed some tea. Then, we checked out of our hotel and drove the empty DC streets to the VIP parking, which I would recommend if you are ever running the RNR USA. You park at the finish line, then your provided a free metro pass to the start.

It was pretty empty at 5am, so we were able to hop on and go with no hold up. As far as I can remember, this was my first trip on the metro (I am a farm girl and no nothing of city transportation), and I found it thrilling!

When we arrived at the start, we walked to the Willard Hotel. That was where the VIPs were invited to have breakfast. Because I did not want to leave Peter, I grabbed a banana and water, then joined him on the couches in the lobby. After about 45 minutes of relaxing in warmth, we walked to the start where I took advantage of the Brooks VIP bathrooms.

I must commend them for moving through the wait line so quickly! I thought it looked very long, but I was moved through quickly, then served peppermints and gels after doing my business. Now that's service!

Then, came the start of the race...

I was still unbelievably nervous, but getting to my corral put me at ease. There was no turning back!

It took nearly 30 minutes for our corral to get going, but once they released us from the start line, my adrenaline was pumping! Especially when they started playing "I Gotta Feeling" by the Black Eyed Peas. Seemed to be the perfect starting line song.

Look how happy I was...


 And it surprisingly showed through in the entire race....

I was able to keep a smile on for the cameras. But my hips, knees, and feet were DYING around mile 18! I just had to keep reminding myself not to stop for anything. Bathrooms or exhaustion. I felt that stopping to walk or pee would have destroyed me. I saw this with many runners. Once they stopped, they did not restart. So I decided that the only time I would walk was when I grabbed a Gatorade or water. Even then, was it difficult to get the gears moving again. 

For the most part, I was able to keep a 10-11 minute pace, which surprised me. My plan was to stick to a 11:30-12:00 minute pace. So to exceed that was an accomplishment. It led me to believe if my dream of a 4:44 finish time would actually come true!

As I neared mile 26, Justin Timberlake's "Tunnel Vision" came on. If you didn't know, it is currently my FAVORITE JT song. Because I am an emotional person, I started getting choked up because a) it was Justin Timerlake's beautiful voice on my iPod and b) I was just minutes away from crossing over the biggest accomplishment of my life. 

The photographers got a great shot of my emotional state....

You sneaky photographer, you!

But I managed to finish with the biggest smile ever...

And my finish time...4:47:36! Not bad for a first race!!!

Although I was extremely proud of my accomplishment, everything on my body became instantly sore and it was hard not to feel somewhat miserable at the same time, but I had a long car ride home to let my legs rest a good bit.

...and take pictures of my amazing medal.

I rate the Rock 'n' Roll USA Marathon with a 9! Maybe I am biased because it was my first marathon, but it rocked my socks! Everything was so well organized that I could not complain. My only suggestion would be for them to allow VIP runners to eat with those that came to support them. I had to eat quickly and alone because I was not allowed to join my fiance since he did not participate in the race.

Anyway, today was strictly a rest day. No running. Though, I feel surprisingly decent today. Not as sore as I would have thought. I may run a mile on the treadmill tomorrow if my legs allow it. I want to be able to get some mileage in before my surgery. 9 more days!!!

Who else ran the Rock 'n' Roll USA Half or Full Marathon?

Have you ever become emotional in a race? 

I DID IT!!!!

I laughed, nearly cried a bazillion times, and rocked out! It was a busy, but exciting time for sure! I will be sure to give you all the recap soon! For now, I am resting it up!!!

Happy 2nd Running Birthday!

I may have had a realllly strong Long Island Iced Tea, so do not judge on my horrible grammar or spelling.

Anyway, I just wanted to wish myself a Happy Running Birthday! Today marks 2 years since I decided to put back on my sad excuse for running sneakers and just start trotting along...

And here I am....2 days away from my first official marathon!

So let's take a look back at the last year!!!

Before my first 26.2 mile attempt, made it 23 miles...March 2013
Hershey 10k, April 2013
My first official half marathon, Frederick Half, May 2013
My very first, 1st place medal in an age group, Nick Adenhart 5k June 2013
The hottest 5K ever, the Run for Freedom 5k, 2nd place age group, July 2013
2nd place age group AND 5k PR, August 2013
Post surgery, Krumpe's 5k, August 2013...made it under 25 minutes.
1st photo ever purchased, got 3rd in my age group, Mad Anthony Half, September 2013
Freedom Half Marathon, October 2013
Hershey Half Marathon, October 2013
First successful attempt at running 26.2 miles, October 2013
First race with my fiance, Peter, Turkey Trot 5k, November 2013
Ah, it was a REALLY good year. I bet this year will be much better! I can see myself kicking butt!

Spartan Up! the Book

There have been many instances in my life where I have struggled to complete a task. It may have been relative to a job I had, a race I participated in, a project at school, or a situation that had occurred in my personal life, like a relationship. To be honest, there were times I contemplated giving up. The assignment or goal I set was either too physically demanding or mentally times, it was both.

The events that life throws at you are sometimes more difficult than we can bear and giving up is inevitable...or is it?

Joe De Sena, CEO & Co-Founder of the Spartan race is not a stranger to pushing his body to the limit and beyond. In one week, he completed the 135-mile Badwater Ultra-marathon, raced in the Lake Placid Ironman, which is 140.6 miles in length, and finished a 100-mile trail run in Vermont. However, being physically fit is only part of who Joe is. He also found success working on Wall Street.

Though you may think his physical and professional success are unrelated to the other, they actually go very much hand in hand. Joe uses what he calls "obstacle immunity" to overcome day to day stress.

"You need to develop what those of us in the Spartan world call obstacle immunity, a skill you will learn to master in this book. With obstacle immunity, nothing fazes you," says author, De Sena. "Business deals will be less stressful. Screaming kids will put a smile on your face."

I guess work wouldn't seem so tough after climbing a greasy wall, where you are almost guaranteed to fall on your ass a few times.

De Sena also adds authenticity to his findings by including true stories of his own adventures and the success stories of other Spartans.

I, personally, find that I would benefit from learning the art of "obstacle immunity." If you are like me, you stress at being successful. You stress when life gets difficult. Although you make it through each day, you still find yourself exhausted because of your anxiety. It makes sense that participating in a physically demanding event, like the Spartan Race, that everything would seem relatively easy thereafter. You have to overcome obstacles that you never thought you were capable of doing. "Spartan Up" teaches you how to push yourself when you have reached the urge to give up.

If you do not think you are physically prepared, take lessons from this book. They will teach you how to train like a Spartan, without having to buy a bunch of pricey equipment, which is how I like to train!

"The fitness world, like so many aspects of our culture, is littered with too many machines, gadgets and apparatus. You can sell that array of stuff, which you can’t do with burpees or running around the block a few times. Our philosophy is that all you need to be fit is intestinal fortitude and a will, and that equipment shouldn’t be the difference maker."

I have yet to participate in a Spartan Race, but after reading about this book, I have added it to my priority list. I think we can ALL benefit from pushing ourselves to do something like this.

If you are interested in joining me in becoming a Spartan,  I suggest buying Spartan Up! You can pre-order your copy below. The official release date is May 13th!

Marathon Training: Week 15 & 7 Days Before the Marathon

As I approach my final week of training (my stomach does 930809483 flips just thinking of this), I have been researching what to do the week before a marathon. Not only do I want to be prepared physically, but most of all, mentally. Following a plan will help me feel better prepared for the big day next Saturday.

So far, I have gotten as far as downloading songs I NEED on my iPod that day. Here are a few I needed to add to the marathon playlist...
Anytime I mention anything about Miley, this picture needs posted...

It's not easy finding 4+ hours of music to keep me amped for the whole time. 

Aside from is what my Week 15 looked like...

6 Miles4 MilesRest4 Miles3.1 MilesRest8 Miles

I have also been checking out articles on what to do before a marathon. Here are what most articles recommended.

  1. Taper! After some grueling long runs, recovery before a marathon is important! Allow your muscles to rest and repair on the weeks leading up to a marathon. I, personally, have reduced this week's mileage (Saturday - Friday) to about 20 miles, with Monday, Thursday and Friday as active rest days. My longest run is 8 miles, which was today.
  2. Hydrate! Keep filling up that water bottle. The last thing you want for a marathon is to be dehydrated! It will impact your performance. I am terrible at keeping hydrated, but I will try my best to keep to the 8 a day rule for this week!
  3. Eat Right! The idea is to carb-load, right? Don't overdo it! You are already tapering, obviously you aren't exerting as many calories this week. So you are already loading up as we speak! And remember, just because you are running a marathon does not mean to indulge in fatty or sugary foods. Keep your choices healthy and whole! Try to include lots of bananas, proteins, whole grains, etc.
  4. Prepare! What are you wearing on race day? Check the weather and pack additional items in case of last minute changes, like rain! So far, they are calling for 40-50 degree temps with clear skies in DC, but I will back extra socks in case of rain and gloves if colder in the AM. I am also bringing my Hips-Sister and packing it with a few food items I am aware my stomach can handle on a run (Arbonne Chocolate Bars, Nature Valley Granola Bars, and Skittles). Plastic baggies will also be included to protect my electronics from rain.

Honestly, I am getting nervous just running through this list. I know I will be all right though. Today was my last long run prior to the race. I contemplated whether I should run flat on the C&O or hills on the road. Although, I prefer the C&O trail for the scenery, I opted for road running because I know that hills would be good for me. The rest of the week, however, will be C&O just to keep it easy for the final taper.

I tried to keep today's run relatively easy, but a few miles went into the 8-9 minute range. It had me a little tired (which may also be due to the nerves in my belly making me feel ill), but I kept reminding myself that I will be running 2-3 minutes slower for most of the race. At least...that's the idea. BUT, my plans never seem to work when race day comes, which is why I wonder if I am worried about pace for nothing. 9 out of 10 times I go faster than my pace plan in all races I participate in.

Anyway, here's what the next few days look like...

5 - 6 Miles4 Miles4 MilesRest1 - 3 MilesRestMARATHON

I can almost gaurentee that this plan will change 19387498237 times before the marathon comes. Hell, I may make Monday or Tuesday a rest day, but I REALLY want to take advantage of the time change and get some evening runs in on the trail (it is supposed to be GORGEOUS weather).

Anyone on their last week of training? What are your running plans?

Will I see any of you on Saturday in DC?

Marathon Training: Week 14 & More Snow?!

This is currently how I feel about the upcoming snowstorm...

After weeks of avoiding the trails due to snow and ice, I was finally able to get 2 runs in this weekend. Unfortunately, this pleasure will be short lived because of the snow that is on it's way. Go home, Winter. You're drunk!

Anyway, here is last week's breakdown...

5 MilesRest3.1 Miles PM1 Mile AM
5 Miles PM
1 Mile AM
4.38 Miles PM
Rest13.1 Miles

I just started tapering this past week, so the weekly mileage is beginning to decrease slightly. The marathon has now become real and the butterflies are starting to take over. I can't believe it. Less than 2 weeks before my first official marathon.

The past week went well, even though I did not get outside as much as I would have hoped. The temps have been dipping down and the wind was picking up, so I kept to the treadmill for most days. But, I stuck with the Pandora Treadmill Game, which seems to always help (except when all the songs don't match my station genre!!!).

Thursday was a perfect example of how well the treadmill game worked it's magic. I was only planning on running 3 miles, put a shirt over the treadmill screen and blasted the music. By the end of the 9th song (I estimate about 2-3 songs per mile), I peaked under the shirt and WOW!

That was not what I expected to see. I almost felt compelled to run to 5, but reminded myself I started tapering.

By Saturday, I was so excited to run! I had not visited the canal in over a month and was desperate to reunite with the trail once again. I even strapped on the GoPro so I could remember how amazing the trail is once it snows again.

If you haven't seen the video, watch it here.

I was also pumped to get my Brook's back on. They have not seen a run in weeks!

Anyway, this week only holds a total of 25 scheduled miles and I already ran 6 of them today. It's going to be a slow week for sure!!! Hopefully the snow will be kind and give us less than more so I can see some more outdoor runs!!

Have a good one, guys!

Are you expecting snow in your area? Love it? Hate it?

Have you tried the Pandora Treadmill Game yet?
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