29 March 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Eight


Monday: 2.5 mile run
Tuesday: Zumba
Wednesday: Speedwork
Thursday: Yoga
Friday: 3.5 miles
Saturday: Yoga
Sunday: Rest

Monday started with a 2.5 mile training run and omg it was a rough one. About a mile and a half in I was so ready to quit but I kept pushing myself and finished. Maybe didn't finish strong and certainly didn't finish happy, but I finished.

Tuesday I was back at lunchtime Zumba at work, it was the first time in weeks and I'd forgotten how good of a workout it is! Work also has a huge selection of free weights so she incorporated those into the routines as well which is good because I have a hard time getting strength training in.

Wednesday I decided to add some more speedwork back into my training and did the Mona Fartlek which is something I discovered when I was training back in the fall. I like it because it's time based, not distance based like other speed workouts I've seen.


I think I'm going to make this my normal Wednesday workout -- it will be interesting to see if there is any progress or changes over the next month or so between now and race day. I'm moving this weekend and will be really close to a high-school (and, thus, a high-school track) and I need to look into their policies regarding the community using it because that would be the best place to work on this.

Thursday was yoga at work and Friday I got my butt up super early to get my long run in before work.


It was cold and dark and my legs were cold and tired but I got those 4 miles in before needing to head into work.

I really kind of hate running in the dark and not just because it's, y'know, dark. I think part of the reason I sometimes struggle that time of year is because I have to be hyper aware of my surroundings so it's not as easy to get into the zone. I always stick to areas with streetlamps and keep my music super low and earbud in only one ear (or skip music altogether) but it's nearly impossible to just run like that. But spring and summer are coming soon so I'll have more daylight in the mornings and I'll be able to relax a bit more when I'm out there.

Obviously I could run after work but I always prefer working out in the mornings so the struggle is real.

Saturday I attended Yoga / Brunch which is a new program my friend Alicia from Poise In Parma has organized. She teaches a 60 minute all levels yoga class and then attendees are invited to brunch at Dante Next Door. (Bonus: there is a free mimosa involved!)


This was the veggie hash they had. When the waitress was going over the specials someone asked about the size of the hash, like if it was big enough for an entree. She said if you added eggs it would be.

Sold.

Potatoes, carrots, onions...I lost count of all the veggies but zomg it was so good. And while I have an IG filter on the photo above, the egg yolks were really that level of orange so you know he bought them fresh.

This was the first week so far that I've trained for six days so, needless to say, I was very much looking forward to a relaxing Sunday. This upcoming week is going to be a bit stressful since I'm moving this weekend so I'm trying to figure out when to fit my long run in. Right now I'm aiming for Sunday in the park while the boyfriend is at work. I need to start doing more back-to-back runs so my legs will be ready in May for the 5K/10K Challenge of racing Saturday and Sunday.

This week my fellow Cleveland Marathon Ambassador Melissa is giving away a free race entry

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

22 March 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Seven


Monday: 2.5 miles
Tuesday: Yoga
Wednesday: 2 miles
Thursday: Yoga
Friday: 3 miles
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Moving

I'm still counting moving as a quasi-form of cross training. Lots of lifting of heavy boxes in and out of cars and in and out of apartments and up and down stairs. Week and a half until the big official day!

Monday was, of course, the first day after our clocks "spring forward" and we lose an hour. I spent all day Sunday cranky and binge watching Dawson's Creek and then could not for the life of me fall asleep Sunday night, which was an issue since I knew I had to get my butt up early to get my run in. Despite tossing and turning for hours and never really feeling like I managed to get any sleep, I was up before my 5:45 am alarm clock and out the door by 6 am.

That week before the time change I was teased with sunlight before work but now, of course, I was back to running in the dark. But, whatever. I got the run in and then when everyone else was complaining about the time change I was all "Oh, I was up stupid early and went for a run sooooo yeah, I'm good."

Work has brought lunch time yoga back and I'm sooooo excited. It's only 30 minutes, but it's just long enough to get a nice mental and physical break in the middle of the workday. So that was one day last week and the other day I did a video in the morning before work.


It's been months since I've done yoga but my body is loving having it back. And despite not being on the mat is such a long time, I'm still flexible and strong enough to get back up into a full Wheel pose! After attending that first yoga class I decided I needed to add a cross-training chapter to my book!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

18 March 2016

Eat to Run

After my most recent weigh-in, I've been thinking about food and running.

Trying to balance calories and navigating weigh gain (or loss) while training is a serious pain in the ass. Like for real. You are working out for days and hours on end and it's easy to overestimate how much exercise you think you are getting (and, therefore, overestimate how many calories you've burned).

But I like to think I'm doing okay. For instance, these are the shrimp tacos I made for dinner this week:


Shrimp + avocado + Greek yogurt + shredded Gouda on corn tortillas. Served with a small side of Spanish rice. Lean protein, healthy fats. Oh yeah, AND REALLY REALLY DELISH. Why the hell I don't eat like this all the time?

Because I still don't think of myself as a "real" runner.

Which is, like, just about the stupidest thing ever. I mean, hello. Look at all the races I've completed. Good goddess, I'm writing a fucking book about being a runner (officially available to pre-order on Amazon!)

Because I still don't think of myself as a real runner, I don't eat like a runner should eat. At least, the way a runner concerned about performance would eat.

Nutrition, with regard to my running, has honestly never ever really entered my thought process. Because why would it? I'm not a real runner and only real runners need to be concerned about such things.

I don't eat to run. I run to eat.

Yesterday we had a big St. Patrick's Day lunch at work, including hot corned beef sandwiches and some potato salad, cookies, etc. I had a sandwich, a small helping of potato salad, and a single cookie. Life is all about balance and I did well -- enjoyed myself without going overboard. So my team and I are sitting there and talking and this whole discussion started about going to the gym in order to eat ice cream.

Now, my first reaction was to think What? No, you should go to the gym because working out is good for you. 

But then I had that moment where I realized I totally do that. I totally work out in order to justify ice cream after dinner or chips for a snack. I go for a three mile run and think that gives me a pass to pig out after.

Life is about balance and sometimes that does mean having those splurges after a run or after a spin class. The disconnect comes when you only run or spin in order to splurge. That's what I do. That's what I've always been doing. Just thinking about some of the choices I make and have made with regards to eating during training or eating the night before and it's surprising this is all just dawning on me now, four years after I started running.

But I am a real runner. Regardless of pace, performance, whatever, I'm a runner and, as such, I need to start treating my body like it's the amazing, awesome, running machine that it is.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

16 March 2016

Weigh In Wednesday: March 16, 2016


Starting weight: 259.8
Last Weigh In: 264.4
This week: 264.6
Weight lost this week: +0.2
Total weight lost: +1.6

It's been a month since my last Weigh In Wednesday post and I weigh.....pretty much exactly the same.

Sigh.

It's just frustrating because I'm making good food choices and working out consistently and the scale. will. not. budge. Or for a week or two it will go down a little bit and then the next week it goes back up a little bit, putting me in the exact same spot as before.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

15 March 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Six


Monday: 1.25 miles
Tuesday: Spinning
Wednesday: 1.75 miles
Thursday: Yoga
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 2 Miles at St. Malachi
Sunday: Rest

Oh man. After last week it felt sooooooo good to get back into my groove. The weather this week was gorgeous and before the time change it meant I could run outside before work with sunlight out.

Wednesday was the big Cleveland Marathon Ambassador Meet-Up and I spent all week looking forward to hanging out with my running tribe.


These people. I heart them so much. We got to hang out at Pub 21 and catch up and talk life and running and training and also hear about all sorts of fun Cleveland Marathon stuff for this year.

If you want to join in the Race Day fun aren't feeling the actual whole "running" part, consider signing up to be a Volunteer! Races really cannot run without the awesome support and work of volunteers and it's a great way to be part of the event while also avoiding the whole training and running part.

This week, my fellow ambassador Pam is is giving away a free entry to one of the races so be sure to visit her blog and enter

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

14 March 2016

Race Recap: St. Malachi 2 Miler

First race of 2016 is in the books!

via Hermes Cleveland

Considering I spent all of 2015 trying to run one race per month, it's a little weird to think my first race of this year didn't happen until March and then for it to be such a beautiful day, too. This was my fourth time running St. Malachi and mid-March in Cleveland can be sooooo unpredictable. I mean, the first time I ran this in 2013 the weather was horrible. But not this year!

In the past I've always done the 5 mile but I was also usually training for the Cleveland Half in May. Since I'm doing the 5K/10K Challenge instead, I opted for the 2 mile distance, which fit in perfectly with my training plan. (Come to think of it, the 5 mile distance always fit perfectly into my half training as well. Almost like it's planned or something.)

(Fun fact: Before Great Lakes Brewing revamped their branding, St. Malachi used to appear on the labels for Conway's Irish Ale. The Conways are GLBC co-owners and their grandfather was a Cleveland policeman who directed traffic in the area for many, many years.)


I don't know if it's because Cleveland has a significant running population or a large Irish community or some combination of each, but this is always a huge race and always St. Patrick's Day themed, which means a large sea of green for miles and miles.


I rarely dress up for any race. For this one, my Shamrockin Jamberry nails and some sparkly shamrocks in my hair were about the extent of my festivity.


One nice thing about this race being so large is I that I tend to know lots of people running it, including several other Cleveland Marathon Ambassadors. Before my race I ran into my friend Mary!


So, here's the thing I didn't take into consideration about this race: because it's only two miles, pretty much half of the entire course was the Detroit-Superior Bridge which, lemme tell ya, is a beast to run up and over once, let alone twice. The church is right by the bridge so up and over, run a little downtown, then back and up and over again and down a big hill to the finish line.

While the 5 mile distance is structured the same way and also starts and ends with the bridge, there are several miles of flat road in between to give your legs a break.

I did my Run-Walk-Run intervals (45:30) for 3/4 of the race, but when we hit that bridge again I just could not keep it up so I powered walk up the crest. But once the bridge started to turn downhill, I picked up my pace and ignored my intervals and ran the whole way down the bridge and the neighborhood hill towards the finish line, making up some time along the way.


Boom!

My goal was to finish under 32 minutes and my official chip time put me at 30:35!

Because I'm a slow runner, by the time I've finished the five mile race in the past, the vendors outside have usually packed up and left (of course, I also ran in crappy weather so I can't fault them for wanting to avoid the snow and ice). This time, I finished before the 5 mile even started so the party was going strong and this was the first time I went to the nearby McCarthy's bar for the party in there, too.

This has always been one of my absolute favorite Cleveland races so no doubt I'll be back again next year.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

08 March 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Five


Monday: Rest
Tuesday: .75 miles
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Rest

The struggle was real this week you guys. I'm not even going to pretend otherwise.


There's a shit ton of LIFE happening behind the scenes here. My grandma died a couple weeks ago, hence the last minute trip to Houston. I have a book manuscript that is due in three months, and -- speaking of being a slow runner -- I really should start thinking about the small group discussion I'm moderating at FitBloggin in July. Oh yeah, on top of all of that, I'm moving in a couple weeks so I have to spend whatever free time I can find packing up the apartment I have spent the last seven years living in.

So my mind is going a million miles a minute just thinking about all the shit that needs to get done over the next couple weeks and months but at the same time all I want to do is stay in bed and binge watch "Dawson's Creek" (which I recently re-discoverd on Hulu).

It's also one of those Catch-22 situations where I know that exercising might help but even just the thought of taking my pjs off and putting my exercise clothes on was exhausting, let alone going outside or going to the gym.

That said, because I'm moving into BC's house, I don't have to wait until the end of the month to start physically moving things so part of this past Saturday was spent taking non-essentials over, like small pieces of furniture, some kitchen items, and the majority of the art on my walls.


The house is multiple floors, including basement and attic. By the end of the day I had almost 30 flights of stairs on my FitBit and the next morning my biceps were killing me.

I'm totally counting it as cross-training.

This week my fabulous friend Jamie is giving away a free race entry so be sure to pop on over to her blog to find out how to enter!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

04 March 2016

Cover Girl


ZOMG.

As you know, I've been turning my experiences as a slow runner into a memoir with Skyhorse Publishing. It's officially up on the publisher's website (which makes this whole thing feel far more real than anything else) and is currently scheduled to be released in January.

My editor showed me the cover a couple weeks ago and Skyhorse did a wonderful job capturing my quirkiness and overall tone of the book in both the cover and the description (which my editor wrote. I suspect she did research using my blog. Hi, Ronnie!).

Holy Batman, this is all really happening. Like, this is a legit thing that is currently in process. My book, my story, the message of slow runners, will soon be out there in the world.

Sign up here to be notified when the book is available for pre-order!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

01 March 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Four


Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Spinning class
Wednesday: 1.5 miles
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 1.1 miles
Saturday: 3 miles
Sunday: Rest

Last Sunday I did something to my back and it was still hurting on Monday, so instead of risking more damage I skipped working out but was up bright and early Tuesday morning for spinning. I hadn't been in a few weeks and it felt great to be back on the bike.

Friday I had to travel to Houston last minute for family stuff but I made sure to get at least a small run in before heading to the airport. I also packed all my workout clothes and shoes and I'm glad I did because the hotel had an amazing gym.

Because of the time change and because I'm already an early riser, I was up at about 4:45 am Houston time Saturday morning. I decided that instead of just hanging around in my hotel room, I'd go down to the gym and hop on the treadmill. I honestly didn't have a plan for how long I'd be on there, but I was hoping for at least two.

Obviously I went a little beyond that.


It turns out, the treadmill isn't horrible. I know there are those of you out there who already know that, but for me this is new information. Because of the usual winter weather here in Cleveland I've had to utilize it often over the past few weeks but I am generally unable to force myself to go more than 2 miles at the absolute max. But on Saturday, I only stopped at 3 because the hotel treadmill cut off after a certain period of time (I nearly tripped when the belt automatically downgraded my speed, I was totally unprepared). If it kept going, I probably would have kept going, too.

Of course, the very small gym space in my apartment building is not nearly as nice and this morning's run was a bit rough but luckily in just a couple of weeks I'll be moving and will then only about 5 minutes away from the much nicer YMCA so I'll be headed there more often, and not just for my weekly spin class.

As it happens, this was three years to the weekend of when I was in Houston running my very first 10K! This meant I spent my time working on that particular chapter of my memoir, which worked out well creatively. Just a couple of months left until the manuscript is due!

Congrats to Nikki for winning the free entry in my giveaway! This week, my fellow Ambassador Debi has a giveaway going on so be sure to check out her blog to enter! 

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus
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