The Perfect Morning & Tasty Eats.

My morning started just perfectly. I would not have wanted it any other way honestly. Bright and early run, great conversation with a running buddy, beautiful sunrise off in the horizon. My endorphins tank has been filled for the day. Thankyouverymuch.
The last couple of days have been busy both at work and at home. I have been so wiped out in the evenings but manage to get it together somehow and prepare some tasty healthy meals. One of my favorites this week was whole wheat spaghetti with kale sauteed in garlic and a little olive oil, topped with feta cheese.
I have found cooking to be quite therapeutic lately after a long day at work.
I also discovered a yummy smoothie they make at the Starbucks at my job! (yes we have a Sbux at my job…hate on me) The barista whipped me up a protein smoothie with mangoes, bananas, soy milk and whey protein powder. No syrups, no sugar! The bananas gave it just the right amount of sweetness. The perfect blend. Now all I need is the ocean side and an umbrella to put in my drink.
Oh how I would long to be here right now…
So anyway, back to my morning run. I ran with my neighbor Elyse who is tapering off for the upcoming San Diego Marathon in June! She is super speedy but was gracious enough to let me run with her this morning. We kept it real easy, finishing 4 miles in just under a 9 minute pace. And of course I logged it on Daily Mile…
I really enjoyed running this morning with a buddy. Since I ALWAYS run solo during the week before work it was a nice change of pace and made the miles whizz by quickly! The strain that was once in my hip has dissipated and I honestly felt stronger than I have felt in WEEKS! Taking some time off definitely does a body good. It just goes to show how important resting your body in between training seasons REALLY is.
My week of workouts has looked something like this:
Monday – Sharanda’s Danceaton class, 1 hour. Yoga On Demand 16 minutes
Tuesday – OFF
Wednesday – 4 mile easy run, Yoga On Demand 20 mins
Thursday – Teaching 15 minutes of abs ‘Crunch Time’, then an hour of Danceaton at 24 Hour Fitness – This will be my FIRST time teaching an abs session! I am so nervous!! Wish me luck 🙂
Friday – Easy recovery run
Saturday – Early Marathon training begins at Luke’s Locker. TIME TRIAL for the participants to put everyone in pace groups. 6 mile run
I am so excited that Early Marathon training is starting! I have never been more ready. I am looking forward to meeting some new running faces this season and getting reacquainted with some older ones. We have lots of people training for various races in the fall season, including New York, Chicago, Marine Corps (which I will be running) and San Antonio. Bring it on baby!
If you are in the Plano area and want to check us out, we have an orientation this evening at 7PM. Come join us!
 
Anyone training for a fall marathon? Do you practice yoga? What is your favorite kind of smoothie?

Domination is the only option.

Ok, so I will have to apologize in advance because since I’m 6 days away from running yet another marathon. So it’s highly likely that the topic of running on the beach will be mentioned quite frequently this week!

Galveston beach...get ready for me!

This morning’s run was easy and relaxed. 5 miles at an 8:30 pace. I was feeling good and got some good stretching in afterwards before work. Breakfast was a potent cup of espresso roast, english muffin with PB, and the new passionfruit Chobani with some honey and chia seeds.
The weekend was a busy one for me, per the usual. Saturday was the Luke’s Locker 5k/10k benchmark race for the Beat Goes On spring training. This event is always lots of fun since every Luke’s Locker store in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area gets together to run and then have breakfast afterwards. It was held at the Ft. Worth Stockyards, which is a neat little area that has rodeo shows, shopping, and restaurants. The founder of Luke’s Locker, Don Lucas was there all decked out in his cowboy gear – in true Texas fashion.
Nike was the sponsor again this year, and they came out to showcase some of their newest running shoes and apparel.
I paced my running group for the 10K race. The group that I coach (green group – I like to call them the green machines) averages about a 9 to 9:30 pace…so we tried to stay within that range for the first half of the race. The trails out in Ft. Worth are beautiful, and we got to see the sun rise. It was a mild winter morning, just perfect for a run.
The back half of the race we did a negative split & picked it up a bit. Everyone looked strong and I think overall my group was pleased with their finish times. I was happy I got to share in that with them.

Hanging with green machines Heidi and Jeanette after the race

I logged in a few more miles on my own since this was my last training run. I picked it up a bit and ended up rounding out at about an 8:50 pace, including the miles I paced with my group. Not too shabby!
After the run and some yummy breakfast I went and had some mimosas with some of the other coaches. Always a good time with them.

awesome ladies - love those two.

The rest of the day I made sure to take it easy. Met up with some friends later but nothing too crazy. Was in bed by about 10 pm. Got some much needed sleep.
Sunday morning I did some cross training, went to Danceaton and got some booty shaking in since I’ll be teaching a class on Wednesday. It was nice to be back in class since I hadn’t gone in about a week or so.
That was my weekend in a nutshell! This week I will be focusing on keeping the mind and body strong. Marathon number 4…get ready for total domination.
In the words of my fellow running friend Patton Gleason
Domination is the only option.

New Year’s Double Recap.

Happy New Year! I hope you had a long, restful holiday weekend. Mine was full of running and celebrating another year of being alive! God is so good and has blessed me with an active lifestyle and good friends and family to share it with. I am thankful for that.
I hope everyone ate their black eyed peas over the weekend! I know I sure did. My mom made a big helping of black eyed peas and cabbage, supposedly it brings good luck? I don’t know for sure. I just do what I’m told and eat them.
This past weekend was the New Year’s Double – back to back half marathons! And guess what…I am happy to say that I survived! The event was spectacular, the volunteers were awesome, and the course was great. I had a bunch of crazy friends out there doing it with me so that made it even better. If you know me, you know that the tiaras and feather boa was in full effect.

pink feather boa – for photo ops only. no feathers flying in my face while running.

So, day 1 – the race started at 8:15 a.m. which was nice because it gave us lots of time to get out there and get a good parking spot. The race was held both days at the same location – Celebration park, which is in a newer nicer part of Allen (suburb of Dallas). I arrived with a couple of my girlfriends who were all doing the half marathon and we found some of our other running buddies and took snapshots.

say cheese! yes I wore a tiara both days. not sure how but they actually stayed on.

I got in the A corral and was ready to go. Garmin on my wrist, fired up and excited. The first half of the race I maintained under an 8 minute pace and was feeling awesome. There were plenty of water/gatorade stations and I utilized them all. Some friends of mine from the Frisco Running Club had a tent/water station too which was nice seeing them out there. The first loop circled around the park and into a neighborhood. When it looped back around I got to see all of my friends and high five everyone. It was really encouraging seeing others out there and kept me going. Around the half way point the course loops back to the start and starts all over again. Mentally this was a little challenging / dull for me but I had my ipod so that kept me distracted a majority of the time. Day 1 my strategy was to basically crush it and go all out which I did. Finished 1:45, nearly a minute and a half from my previous best time which was a PR. I won 3rd place in my age group and received a champagne glass trophy. Sweet!

INTENSE.

Cheers!

After round 1 I met up with my friend Ann and my mom for a little celebration brunch at this fabulous restaurant called Bonnie Ruth’s in Allen. If you haven’t been here before and live in the area, you must go! The food is mostly French but delicious and rich. I had the omelet with fresh herbs and goat cheese and a cup of corn chowder soup. And of course a celebratory mimosa. For dessert Ann and I split the kahlua cake which was divine!

Cake? Yes please.

I went home following brunch and took a nice nap. For NYE the BF and I went over to a friend’s house and did the whole countdown and rang in the New Year right. Immediately after midnight I knew I needed to book it out of there so I did since I had yet another early race morning. It was fun though.

Tiaras – a necessary NYE prop.

The next morning, I was feeling somewhat fresh and ready to go. I met up with a girlfriend of mine and we were off on our way. Took some photos with some friends from the Frisco Running Club. One of my buddies, Hamlin ran back to back FULL marathons, day 1 with a weighted vest, day two barefoot. Yep, that’s crazy dedication right there.
Round 2 I knew would be a recovery run, and it was. It was nice knowing the course already so I knew what to expect. I got into the front of Corral B and lined up then the gun went off. I was a little sore from round 1 so I took it easy, maintaining an 8:30 min pace. The music on the ipod definitely helped me this time.

happy and high fivin’!

I finished 1:53, 6th place in my age group which was fine by me. My overall goal for both races was to finish each one in under 2 hours. I had no expectations other than that. It just so happens that I did PR which was so awesome! I loved the double medal they gave us at the end!
Reflecting back on it I am super happy that I did the New Year’s Double. It was an organized race that I would definitely do again. I also love the concept of ending and starting the year on a solid note. It was my first experience doing back to back halfs and I loved being able to challenge myself and push my limits.
This year I am looking forward to coaching another awesome half marathon program with Luke’s Locker and meeting some new faces. I love being able to encourage and inspire others to push their limits and go far beyond what they ever thought possible. It is just so rewarding to see people start out unsure about their abilities and see them grow into confident and successful runners. I only know because I was once that beginner who knew nothing about pacing, proper fueling and hydration. Having coaches that encouraged and motivated me helped me become the runner that I am today.
I am also looking forward to teaching more Danceaton classes this year at 24 Hour Fitness. I am subbing right now still and don’t have my own class but I enjoy the flexibility of being a sub. Tomorrow I will be teaching a class for a girlfriend of mine after work so that will be a good time as always. I see it as everything has its own timing and when the time is right I will have my own class but right now I am taking it all in stride.
I hope everyone has a great week and starts off this new year on a productive note!
Have a good one!