October Goals

I’ve been reading around the internet about the importance and benefits of goal setting. The problem is that I goals all the time, but my goals are more “big picture” and travel based. For example, I have a goal to visit India/China/Africa (aka somewhere BIG) by my thirtieth birthday. Is this the most sensible goal I’ve ever set? No, not really. But, it is something I like to think about. Given where I am at this very moment in my life, I’d say that traveling to somewhere like India is possible. My goal of traveling to India is not a bad one at all, but I do need to work on setting smaller, more achievable goals. Because really the best goals are ones that include a deadline. The goal (or is it a dream?) to travel to either India/China/Africa has a deadline of my thirtieth birthday, five years away. But, I can be more realistic and if I write it down I am held accountable to all of you.

So, without further adieu, I present you with my October Goals:

  • Run, slowly.
    In a little over a week, I should be okay to begin running again. Over the weekend, I started running super small snippets during my walks (from a fire hydrant to a fire hydrant, to the end of street, etc). I felt great as I was doing it, but I am nervous about re-injury. The plan is to start slowly – run for five minutes, walk for ten for the first few days and then start adjusting based on how my knee feels. I have a 5K at the end of the month that I’d really like to complete pain free.
  • Walk/Cross-Train.
    Walking and the elliptical have been good to me these past few weeks. I’ve  managed to keep my mileage up fairly well. I’m not where I want to be, but I’m not at square one and my speed hasn’t slowed at all. Especially if I am able to run again, I need to make cross-training a priority.
  • Cook a new recipe each week (and blog about it)!
    I feel like I’ve been in a funk with food lately. What better way to shake it off than to try new things. I am totally open to suggestions as to what to make!
  • Drink water.
    Pretty self-explanatory. I definitely have not been drinking as much as I should.
  • Put my clothes in my laundry hamper, not on the floor.
    I am the person that will only clean when company comes over. And my bedroom floor is like one big laundry hamper to me… even I though I have a hamper. This is a lifelong habit, but I need to break it. Perhaps this will be the month when I finally get in gear.
  • Read a book.
    Suggestions, please!

And there you have it, my October goals. Mostly fitness related, but overall a good place to start. And they are totally do-able. I just need to be disciplined and focused.

PS — Pretty sure Chris will be super excited to constantly remind me about putting my clothes in the hamper instead of leaving them on the floor!

Do you set goals for yourself? If so, what are they?

Are you dressing up for Halloween? Is it lame if I dress Penny up for Halloween?

Goodbye Fat Pants!

You know the ones I am talking about. The bigger pair that sits in the back of the closet in case you’re feeling a little bloated or just want some extra wiggle room. The pants you keep around in case you go out of town and let vacation get the best of you. Those pants.

Well, yesterday morning as I was getting dressed for work I looked through my closet. I’ve been feeling unhappy with my clothes for various reasons lately, but I think its just because I need to go shopping. (Really, you can only wear the same outfit so many times before it gets old.) I picked through my stuff, glancing over my typical fat pants and went for the pants that once upon a time ago fit. The pants I haven’t been able to wear for six months because of wedding stress followed by newlywed bliss coupled with a lack of regular exercise made me gain a few pounds.

I picked them up and looked at them.

It was going to be close. Like I could put them on, but I couldn’t button them. Then I considered laying on the bed to put them on because that works with just about anything (especially when you ignore the accompanying muffin top). If I sucked in would it make them fit better? Would I have to suck in all day?

No, I would not have to suck in all day. Because when I put them on the button clasped without force and I was able to exhale freely.

Success!

This feeling, this blissful feeling, is something I don’t want to lose. My next goal is to fit into the next size down from where I am now. To be completely honest, I’ve never been the next size down from where I am now. And that is slightly intimidating.

Though, for once in my life I feel like I am actually in the right frame of mind to reach that goal. My eating habits are getting a makeover. Training is coming along despite injury. And I finally understand that to change my body it is going to take time and dedication.

Quick Fitness Recap: The last week (and so far this week!) has been spectacular on the exercise front. To keep my mileage up for training I’ve started taking really long walks. My hope is that when I am able to run again it won’t be a huge shock to my system again. Also, if I am able to get faster in my walking then hopefully my running speed will improve as well. For example, on Saturday (my usual long run day) I went for an 8.25 mile walk. It took a little over two hours to complete but no complaints and no blisters. I took the day off on Sunday. Monday I did a quick 3.5 mile workout on the elliptical followed by my favorite pump class. Tuesday I went to yoga. And yoga is becoming a thing for me because it feels great.

Tell me about your workouts last week and this week. Are you shaking things up a bit? 

Cross Training Like A Boss!

I’ve been a busy busy girl this past week. Thank goodness because I definitely needed a boost in endorphins from not being able to exercise for the past few weeks.

By Monday, I began to get nauseous. Two weeks of no exercise made me an unhappy camper and my body was not pleased. I’m not sure if the nausea was brought on due to stress or lack of movement. All I know is that after I exercised on Tuesday, the nausea disappeared. Hallelujah!

Tuesday evening I took it slow. Like slower than slow. Forty-five minutes on the elliptical at a thirteen minute pace per mile. It felt good to be moving, but I was being cautious. I could not imagine finally being able to move again only to overdo it and be out of commission even longer.

Wednesday night, I hit the elliptical again. This time for thirty minutes, but higher intensity and resistance. My knee didn’t bother me at all, not even a teensy bit. After the elliptical, I went over to a muscle mix class to get some strength training in.

It was good to be back!

I didn’t work out on Thursday due to a social event. Though, I broke my personal rule of “no exercise Fridays” due to the missed workout. Friday evening I spent an hour on the elliptical going as hard and has fast as I could for an hour. My pace matched my running speed. A lovely workout to kickstart the weekends festivities.

On Saturday, Chris and I went into DC. We walked somewhere between four to six miles all over the city. More on that later.

Sunday morning I went to two gym classes: Body Step and Body Pump. I used to go to Step all the time before I started running. The up and down motions of the step had me concerned about my knee but luckily, no problems! Doing Pump after Step is not always the smartest decision. My lower body was so fatigued from Step, but I pushed through the workout. The only issue I had occurred during the lunge track. My left knee was done and it hurt. I spent the song stretching out my leg.

Monday I went to Spin class. It has been a hot second since I went to spin. I always forget how much I like spin until I’m sitting the class increasing my resistance.

Tonight I did a Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred DVD and it kicked my butt.

This week has been consistent and I love it. It is so amazing to be back in the gym.

I am only slightly (okay, majorly) upset that I haven’t been able to get outside as much. I feel like if I go outside I will be too tempted to run. And that would be no good. Unfortunately (for me), the weather has been ridiculously beautiful this week. It’s not fair. I spent all summer training in the humidity and the heat to be cheated out of the beautiful Fall weather. But I’m trying not to focus on that. Cross training will make me a stronger runner… just in time for Winter.

How did your workouts go this week?

Did you try anything new? How’d it go?

Did you eat anything particularly yummy over the week? Share the recipe!

Friday I’m in Love {with Food}

Lately, I’ve been eating so many good foods. Probably more than I should be considering I want to lose some weight, not gain it.

Whatever.

I will never apologize for my love of food. Or my love of photographing my food (something I’ve done way before Instagram)!

On Monday, I was having some difficulty picking out my breakfast cereal. Do I go with the always delicious frosted mini wheats? Or do I mix it up and choose Special K Chocately Delight? Being the indecisive person that I’ve been known to be, I mixed them together. The result? The most amazing flavor combination of my breakfast cereal life. So much yumminess in one bowl, it disappeared in less than two minutes.

Honeycrisp apples have RETURNED!! You can have your pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin beer, I’ll enjoy every honeycrisp apple I encounter. I spotted these beauties last week while Chris and I were grocery shopping and shrieked with delight in the store. People stared. It wasn’t that awkward. The first bite into this apple and I knew that wait all year was worth it. No other fruit compares to the beauty and the amazingness of the precious honeycrisp!

Ice cream for dinner might be new favorite way to eat dinner. Put it in a waffle cone and I am sold. Wednesday night while I was getting my sweat on at the gym, Jenny sent me a text asking if I wanted to go for ice cream later. She then put a sad face saying that I wouldn’t be able to go since I hadn’t had dinner yet. I quickly replied that ice cream is a perfectly acceptable dinner choice for a twenty-five year old adult. And it was, it really was.

Apples and pizza for lunch? If you insist! The extra cheesiness of this pizza with the sweetness of the apples made me s happy. Unfortunately, two slices was one too many.

I’ve had some other tasty treats this week including breakfast tacos and pulled pork. And I am in no way sorry about that. Everything in moderation. I wasn’t overeating, but I could have incorporated more vegetables into the diet. Clearly, I fell off the wagon this week with eating (okay maybe the last few weeks), but I don’t believe in depriving myself of something that just tastes SO good! Next week will be filled with apples, salads, frosted mini wheats, and maybe not ice cream for dinner.

It’ll all even out.

And it’ll be delicious.

What is your favorite food? Why? Do you like to take photos of your food, why or why not? How do you change your eating habits when you have ‘bad’ weeks? Let’s discuss!

PS. Penny likes to explore the dishwasher.

The No Exercise Blues + Cross Training Plan

Hello, my name is Sarah and I haven’t exercised in almost two weeks (minus the half marathon). These past two weeks I’ve allowed myself to indulge in delicious Mexican food, alcohol, hamburgers, and cupcakes. I haven’t felt my heart rate rise above 150 beats per minute in close to three weeks. Instead, I’ve casually strolled to the candy jar taking a mini-size Hershey bar and scarfing it down like I’ll never have another piece of chocolate again in my life. But who are we kidding, three hours later, I return to enjoy another. When I finally start to feel myself crash around 3pm, I’ll have a diet soda to try to keep me awake. I look at my running shoes and wince a little knowing that I can’t stop won’t stop until my feet are healed and the damage I’ll be working off may hurt more than the blisters.

Needless to say, I’ve kind of been eating my feelings.

I am MISERABLE without exercise. I miss the sweat in my eyes that speed work brings. I miss waving to the other runners and smiling at dogs. I miss adjusting my running belt. I miss miss miss running. And I miss sweating. And I miss Chris telling me that I am a “stinky baby” when he comes to pick me up from wherever I am. I miss working out with friends and laughing at ourselves in classes.

Ugh.

The good news is that this little pity party can end on Monday.

Monday I start cross training for the next two (or more) weeks. Only cross training. As part of my way to train smarter with ITBS, I need to incorporate more of this into my life instead of just going outside and running every chance I could for marathon training. Cross training has been my weakest part of training thus far because as soon I started to realize I was getting better at running I wanted to be THE BEST (for me!) at running. So now, I have to take a step back and focus on all of the exercises I liked to do before I decided to sign up for a marathon.

The plan?

Monday: Elliptical and Mat Pilates
Tuesday: Spin and Body Pump
Wednesday: Elliptical
Thursday: Body Pump and Yoga
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Long walk
Sunday: Rest

Each of those is also included a before and after series of ITB stretches. Then, depending on how my knee feels, I will incorporate running again. I don’t expect to be back up to 12 miles, but I don’t expect to be back at barely being able to run one mile.

Baby steps. I need my knee to recover properly or this is only going to become a larger issue. Though I am anxious to get back to running I am trying to remain realistic about the stress of this injury. Even when I do start running again, I have to take more walking breaks. It’s imperative if I want to continue pushing for distance.

Tell me about your workouts this week. Did you workout with a friend or go solo? What is your favorite method of cross training? Let’s discuss!