Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wedding Weight

A world where I have to count and keep track of all the calories I eat and burn in a day is a world I could never be happy in. That being said, my life needs a serious change.

There is something about the word "wedding" that gets us girls to trade our daily dessert for extra diet water and sugar free everything? Maybe it's the fact that we have to prance around for an entire day in a super tight ball gown, or maybe it's the pictures we will have to look back on for the rest of our lives. Or maybe it's that we're so busy actually planning we forget to slow down and have normal lives where we, you know, work out and eat right? I never thought I'd be that person, but suddenly I am wondering what happened to the fit active girl who was around just a few months ago. I think I slowly let planning creep into my life and take over my gym time.

Thankfully for the time being I have a lot of things crossed off our wedding to-do list, and it feels great. With engagement pictures coming up on month from today I can't help but realize I need to maybe tone up a bit in some of my not so favorite places (yes butt and thighs, hips too, I am talking about you!).

But I refuse to "diet". In my mind is a really ugly word that makes me think of deprivation, limits, and unhappiness. I don't respond well to food diaries, or calorie counting. I have tired the Loose It app for my ipad so many times now, only to last a week because I cannot face watching the amount of food I eat add up. And you know what, I don't think there is anything wrong with that. Some people just can't do it.

What I do know, is what does work for me, and that's listening to my body. Intuitive eating I guess? Eating less dessert, eating more fruits through out the day, drinking more water, smaller portions, all those good things. That is the only diet I have been known to be good at following. And if I want chocolate, I have chocolate. Just not a pound of it. I would much rather learn when my body is satisfied with food than have a calculator tell me I have eaten too many calories.

What is your healthy eating plan? Are you a calorie counter or an intuitive eater?

xx Sara

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Good Old Shoe(s)

First of all, I love the movie Wag the Dog. And when I started writing this post I thought of THIS. It has NOTHING at all to do with what I'm writing about. Except old shoes.

Saturday I made a tiny little (read: HUGE) runners mistake. Something no one should ever do. Trust me. It may sound harmless, it's not.

I *gasp* ran in OLD shoes.

It's true.

It wasn't on purpose. Last week was a whirlwind of stress. My car died on Wednesday night on the way home from work. Thursday was spent making phone calls. Friday was spent looking at cars. It didn't occur to me until Friday night that I had left all my running clothes, including my sneakers, at the gym at work. Boo.

But I had to be at Team Challenge practice bright and early Saturday morning ready to run, so I grabbed the newest old pair of sneakers from my closet and went for it. We ended up doing just over 6 miles through Valley Forge. The weather was cold but sunny and great for a nice long run. Afterwards I felt great! We went home and got ready for a family event, and afterwards headed back out to troll the dealerships for my new car. Which by the way I am in love with.

Kissing my old (non-running) car good-bye

Hello New CAR!<3

Ok. But really. Back to the shoes. I was looking forward to the whole, sleeping in on Sunday thing, and I must admit it was wonderful. Until I tried to get out of bed and make coffee, and could barely walk. My outer thighs were SO SORE. Curse you IT bands!

It was then that I realized I never should have worn those old shoes. There was a reason I needed new ones. I basically waked around like a cripple for two days, I even tried rolling my legs out with a coffee cup. That should probably tell me I need a foam roller. Yes I attempted a run last night, and I felt ok (in the new shoes) but it wasn't until I (very painfully) massaged my quads last night that I finally started to feel better. I learned my lesson, old shoes are old for a reason, they are pretty much good for collecting dust, donating at race expos, and gardening. But in all honesty I'm not much of a gardener.

Have you ever made some running mistake you know you shouldn't? Worn old shoes? Ate something new the day before a race?

xx Sara

Sunday, March 20, 2011

FiveK Fail

Don't you hate when you throw your goals and ambitions up for the public to read and then they become a giant sad face failure?

Not even the guilt of having to write this post could get me out of bed this morning for my race. Nor could the guilt of having spent money on the registration fee, or the guilt of dragging Ralph down to the city to pick up my race packet. I guess just like everyone has their first DNF, you have to have a first DNSU (Did Not Show Up).

What happened to me? I wasn't nervous. I wasn't scared. I just. Didn't. Want. To go.

Way to lead by example Sara. But really? I had taken a week off of running a few weeks back b/c of a cough. A cough I thought was getting better so I started running again. And then It didn't go away. I guess I thought my body deserved a little rest, and maybe if it got the rest it wanted my cough would go away and I could run guilt free.

Basically I woke up at 6am, looked at my phone, shut off my alarm and went back to sleep. It is not my proudest moment. Especially with all the carbs I have been eating. A small part of my feels a little bit guilty. But a large part of me feels really happy to have enjoyed a leisurely Sunday, making pancakes and drinking coffee with my Fiance.

There will be other races. There will be other runs.

Have you ever opted not to even show up to a race? How did you feel afterwards??

xx Sara

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Distance to speed

Signing up for a 5k seemed like a really good idea three months ago. A great mini goal to keep me running, and a MUCH shorter distance than my usual races. For weeks it loomed in the distance as something I really didn't have to think about. And of course my plans to train were side tracked with planning the biggest and best party of my life (duh, my wedding!)

No big deal, it's only a 5k. Or so I kept telling myself. The last time I ran a 5k was with Ralph, we ran 10mm and I wanted to throw up at the end. It was also like 90 degrees that morning. But despite all the painful memories I have of 5k's my mind could only recall the amazing speed workouts I had last fall while training for Philly. Cruising along, pushing hard with no other thoughts in my mind but coasting along as fast as I could. It was an amazing feeling.

So I went back to my regularly scheduled running program. This wasn't hard to do with Team Challenge forcing me out of bed on Saturday mornings for my long run. I managed to get to the gym a few nights a week and put in some miles on the treadmill. I was sweating, and feeling great. And then the other night, mid run, it hit me. I missed the feeling of running fast. I was about 1.5 miles in and decided this would probably be my last chance to throw in some speed before Sunday's race. If you could call it a race - it's more like a run that I get to wear a number and get an official time for. Races are for people that are ready. Me not so much.

Up went my speed, faster went my legs, and almost instantaneously I flashed back to all the 5k's I have ever ran. Pure. Torture. What had I gotten myself into? But as the interval ended, so did all my doubts. With shorter distance comes the push for faster speed. This is such unknown territory for me, but something I am also so excited to explore. How fast can I really go? What am I capable of? It's the complete opposite of the marathon where you rely on your endurance to keep you on your feet for hours at at time. I was entering a whole new world of running and runners, making the transition from distance to speed.

So I made a decision, the goal for tomorrow's race will be to pick a comfortably hard yet sustainable pace and just go for it. I want a nice good warm-up before hand because that's when I run my best. Who knows what my time will be, but whatever it is it is. This year, and maybe more is going to be about experimenting with different workouts, different distances, exploring the world of racing and seeing where the road takes me.

Have you ever switched up your distances? Gone from long to short, from marathon to ultra, or from 5k to longer? How do you adapt to the change?

xx Sara

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Just don't quit?

"Just Don't Quit. Ever"

Words of advise from my former friend/coach when training for my first marathon. I get it. I really do. Just keep pushing even when you want to stop and curl up in a ball and cry. Keep going even though your legs feel like lead. For so long I lived by these words, and they inspired me to push through a lot of things. So when I started my blog it only made sense that this would be my mantra. It was so simple.

But things change, and I grew up a little. I realized you don't always have to push. It's ok to take a break sometimes and it's not called quitting. It's called life. Balance. Happiness.

Today when I opened up my blog I was hit with the feeling that I needed a change.

Let's be serious - I'm just a happy girl running in pink and loving every minute of life. I may never come close to qualifying for Boston. And I don't really care anymore. I have an amazing fiance who has adapted to my crazy running life and I have started coaching and find that to be the most rewarding experience.

New outlook = New blog title


xx Sara