September 2018 Goals

After a very successful and productive July, I was quite optimistic that August would be just the same.  Although I started the month off full of motivation and enthusiasm, both of those fizzled a bit towards the end of the month as I transitioned back into the school routine.

Even though I’m disappointed with how I ended the month, overall August was a successful month when it came towards meeting my monthly goals.

1.  Log at least 130 miles.

Grade: A

My August mileage total was 126.2 miles, which was 97% of my 130 miles goal.  The reality was that I was only one workout short of reaching my goal, but as I shared in Monday’s weekly recap, last week was an incredibly exhausting week and I just didn’t have it in me to get that last workout in for the month.

My August miles brings my 2018 mileage total to 769.6 miles, which means that I’m only 30.4 miles from being 100% on track with my goal to log 1,200 miles this year.  I know that with focus and hard work that I can reach my mileage goal by the end of the year.

2.  Work out at least six days per week.

Grade: C

Most weeks I worked out four or five days per week.  I’ve come to the realization that as a working mother of an active toddler that I don’t have the time and energy to dedicate to working out all but one day each week.  And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

3.  Focus on healthy eating.

Grade: A-

With only a few exceptions I was very pleased with my food choices last month.  By fueling my body with healthy food I was able to stay as active as I did.

4.  Continue to stay on track while away from home.

Grade: A

While away from home during the first half of the month, I managed to not only focus on healthy eating but also staying active.

September is going to be an incredibly busy month.  Not only is it my last full month of marathon training, but it is also the first full month of the school year.  On top of that, my family has quite a few social activities on our calendar this month.  I will certainly be challenged when it comes to staying on track but I’m determined to do it.

1.  Log at least 140 miles.

Given that I have three double digit long runs this month, I’m optimistic that I can log at least 140 miles this month.

2.  Work out at least five days per week.

I think that working out five days per week is a much more realistic goal than six days was, especially now that I’m back at work.

3.  Reach my RMHC fundraising goal.

Regular readers of my blog know that I will be running Chicago as a charity runner with Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  As of today I am 72% of the way towards reaching my fundraising goal of $1,000.  Given that I’m expected to reach this goal by October 1st, including this on my list of goals for September is a no brainer.  Even though reaching this goal isn’t completely in my control, I am more likely to receive additional donations if I continue to educate friends and family about the mission and success of RMHC.

4.  Incorporate self care into my routine.

As the school year continues on my daily stress will also likely increase.  In order to prevent some of consequences of high amounts of stress that I’ve been faced with in the past, it will be important that I take time for myself in order to help destress.

QOTD: What are your goals for September?

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 13

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

After a physically challenging week during week 12, week 13 of my Chicago training proved to be a very mentally challenging one, at least in the later part of the week.  Between the heat and an incredibly busy first week with students at school, my mental strength was put to the test last week.  At times I overcame the challenge, and at others I opted for extra rest.

Monday, August 27th

Most of last week included temperatures in the 90s and a heat index in the 100s.  The DC area was under an excessive heat warning multiple days last week, and Monday was no exception to that.  After work I had an appointment with the chiropractor, and had hoped that the closer that it got to sunset the more bearable the conditions outside would become.  That didn’t happen, and because I had planned to run with little man I couldn’t make a last minute escape to the gym.  Monday wound up being an unplanned rest day.

Tuesday, August 28th

In celebration of the first day of school with students I headed to the gym immediately after school for my first run of the week (we were under an Excessive Heat Warning for the second day in a row).  It was also once again hot and stuffy inside of the gym.  I had to run slower than I would have liked to but I pushed through and ran 4.50 miles.  Afterwards I completed a one mile cool down walk.

Another hot and humid day resulted in another afternoon run on the treadmill.

Wednesday, August 29th

Once again after school I headed straight to the gym.  Once there I spent 30 minutes on the elliptical followed by 40 minutes of full body weight training.

Thursday, August 30th

Because of Back to School Night Thursday was an incredibly long and busy day at school.  After a full day of school I quickly ran home to pick up little man from daycare and get him situated at home with his godmother before returning to school.  Even if I had wanted to work out there simply was not time.

Friday, August 31st

After an exhausting Thursday I just didn’t have it in me to workout on Friday.  I ran some errands on my way home from school and then relaxed at home with my boys after a long week.  Even though I was less than four miles from reaching my monthly mileage goal I just didn’t have it in me to head out for one last workout for the month.

Saturday, September 1st

There was a chance of thunderstorms all day long on Saturday and I didn’t want to risk getting stuck in a thunderstorm during my long run.  Despite the high mileage on my training plan for the day, I quickly modified my long run mileage for the next couple of weeks and headed to the gym for my long run.  I spent ten miles running on the treadmill while watching John McCain’s funeral.  Despite the distraction and feeling both physically and mentally strong for the majority of my run (I only started to become bored during the last two miles), I was so glad once I reached the ten mile mark.  Long runs on the treadmill are hard!  After my run I walked another mile to cool down.

Despite the mileage that was originally on my training plan, I’m more than happy with a 10 mile long run, especially one that was completed on the treadmill.

Sunday, September 2nd

Despite my intentions to head to the gym for a workout, I instead opted to spend extra time with my boys.  I also took a nap during little man’s nap.  I don’t regret my decision one bit.

Total Weekly Mileage – 18.50 miles (14.56 miles less than week 12)

Total Chicago Mileage – 350.46 miles

QOTD: How do you stay motivated during those very busy weeks?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 12

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Last week was physically challenging.  After pushing myself at last Sunday’s Leesburg 20k (recap still to come!), my legs were very sore for several days.  Coupled with long days at school as I prepared for my students, my weekday runs were anything but stellar.  I’ll be honest, it had me worried for how my long run for the week would go, but thankfully my long run was the strongest of my three runs last weeks.

Monday, August 20th

To help stretch my legs out the day after the Leesburg 20k I did a walking commute to daycare to pick up little man that afternoon.  Its about 2.5 miles round trip from our house to daycare but I extended the route to 3.35 miles.  We both enjoyed the much needed time together after his first day back at daycare.

Tuesday, August 21st

Afternoon thunderstorms resulted in me heading to the gym after work to complete my run on the treadmill.  My run wound up being both mentally and physically challenging.  Not only were my legs heavy but it was also on the hot side inside the gym.  After pushing myself to run for 45 minutes I walked 0.75 miles and then did 30 minutes of weight training.

Running on the treadmill is never any fun, especially when your legs are tired and the gym is hot.

Wednesday, August 22nd

Between a long day at work and a doctor’s appointment late in the afternoon, I was too physically and mentally exhausted to work out by the time that I made it home.

Thursday, August 23rd

Thursday’s run was another hard one.  I was exhausted from the busy teacher back to work week, and my legs felt like they each had a heavy brick attached to them.  I took several extra walk breaks during my run, and despite the number of times that I wanted to give up and just walk back home I didn’t.  5.75 miles later I was very happy that I had pushed through and hadn’t given up.

I was so happy to be done with that run

Friday, August 24th

Between being at school for 13 hours (a full day of work followed by the fall kick off event and first home football game of the season) plus having my long run the next day I was more than happy to have a planned rest day.

Saturday, August 25th

After two challenging runs earlier in the week I am so thankful that my 18 miler wasn’t mentally challenging.  It was a beautiful 61 degrees when I headed out for my run, though it quickly warmed up and was 81 degrees by the end of my run.  I did an out and back route, which included lots of hills and some areas with very little shade.  Despite the hills I managed to maintain a sub 11 minute pace during the first six miles of my run.  My pace slowed down dramatically during the last eight miles, and I wound up having to walk nearly every hill during the last three miles.  Nonetheless, I was quite pleased with how Saturday’s run went and my run earned a big thumbs up.  Afterwards I completed a 0.77 mile cool down walk.

After both of my weekday runs being quite the challenge I was quite pleased with how much more smoothly my long run for the week went.

Sunday, August 26th

Not only was I sore from my run but we also made a day trip to Pennsylvania for a big family BBQ.  We were gone for just under 12 hours and I was completely exhausted by the time we arrived back home.

Total Weekly Mileage – 33.06 miles (4.25 miles more than week 11)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 331.96 miles

QOTD: How do you push yourself through the mentally and/or physically challenging training runs?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 11

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Last week was a bit of a roller coaster.  Getting back into a routine here at home after being away for a couple of weeks, as well as getting ready to head back to work, made for a very busy week.  There were a couple of days when I felt very rundown, which resulted in a couple of extra rest days, but I’m thankful that the week ended on a high at yesterday’s Leesburg 20k.

Monday, August 13th

I kicked off the week, and my first weekday back at home, with both a dentist appointment and a visit to see the chiropractor.  It had been three weeks since my last adjustment, and my body is used to going at least once a week.  Let’s just say that after sleeping in multiple beds that aren’t my own, as well as six flights, that my body was in desperate need of that adjustment.  I was very sore from Monday’s adjustment and decided that an evening of resting on the couch was more important than trying to get a work out in.

Tuesday, August 14th

Little man and I completed our first stroller run in almost a month.  He was so excited that morning when I asked him if he wanted to go for a run with me.  I took full advantage of both his excitement and the fact that it was a cooler morning with lower humidity and ran six miles.  Afterwards I walked another 1.79 miles.  Running with the stroller was slow going, but the fact that little man was so excited to go for a run with me made the challenge of running with the stroller completely worth it.

Little man was just as excited about going for a run as I was.

Wednesday, August 15th

Early evening I headed to the gym.  While I was away my gym moved to a new location.  Although it is slightly further from home it is also now slightly closer to work, so when I head to the gym straight from school the commute time won’t be any different than it has been in the past.  The new location has all brand new equipment, which I thoroughly enjoyed being able to use during my 35 minutes on the elliptical and 40 minute of full body weight training.

To say that I was sweaty after that workout is an understatement!

Thursday, August 16th

Because little man and I had our last story time of summer break to attend Thursday morning I wasn’t able to get out for my run until later in the day.  It had been an incredibly hot day, with the heat index well into the 100s, so I waited until as close to sunset as possible to head out for my run.  It felt like 96 degrees when I left the house, and because of the heat I told myself that any distance at any pace would be an accomplishment.  I finished 5.25 miles just as the sun was finishing setting.

Thursday’s run may have been a challenging one, but I did get to enjoy a beautiful sunset during it.

Friday, August 17th

Friday was my first day back at work (yes, the new school year for teachers really started on a Friday this year in my school district).  After a busy day of working on setting my classroom up I came home feeling rundown and had a slight migraine.  Working out was far from my priority that evening.

Saturday, August 18th

Saturday was one of those lazy, dreary days.  Late in the afternoon I did muster up the motivation to complete a 25 minute strength training workout at home.  Given that I had my long run the next morning I didn’t push myself too hard but it felt good to sweat a bit.

Sunday, August 19th

Yesterday was the Leesburg 20k.  When I signed up for this race I did so knowing that it would be a great way to mix up marathon training.  Although I was doubtful about the weather while setting my goals for the race, it wound up being a gorgeous summer morning with the temperature in the high 60s and low 70s during the race.  The humidity was also only 80%.  I wound up being able to push myself a bit during the race, and finished the 12.4 miles (well, according to my Garmin I ran 12.58 miles) in 2:20:02.  I crushed all three of my goals, and PRed!  It was a great way to end the week!

All smiles after a great race!

Total Weekly Mileage – 28.81 miles (4.08 miles less than week 10)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 298.90 miles

QOTD: Do you enjoy using races as a long run while training for another race?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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My Goals for Sunday’s Leesburg 20k

While I worked on drafting this year’s Chicago Marathon training plan back in the late Spring I also looked at possible races that I could run that would double as a long training run.  When I saw that the date for this year’s Leesburg 20k aligned well following the week after a 16 mile long run, I knew that registering for this year’s race was a no brainer.

I have run numerous Potomac River Running races, and as I’ve shared before I am a huge fan of this local race series.  However, its been four years since the one and only time that I have run the Leesburg 20k and I am excited to challenge myself to this race and course again.

Nearing the finish line of the 2014 Leesburg 20k
Photo Credit: Potomac River Running

The Leesburg 20k course is a challenging one.  It is an out and back course, mostly on the W&OD Trail.  Although parts of the trail are shaded, which is especially nice for a summer race, the trail in Leesburg is also quite hilly.  Thankfully, the majority of the hills are in the first two-thirds of the race, and the last third of the race is mostly downhill.  Back in 2014 this helped me finish the race strong, and I’m optimistic that it’ll help me to do the same this year.

Who doesnt love running a race that has the majority of the hills in the first half of the race?

Although one of my 2018 goals is to PR every race distance that I run, I also want to balance my desire to push myself with knowing that this is a long training run for Chicago.  Hopefully the weather will be in my favor Sunday morning during the race and I’ll feel comfortable with pushing myself.  Depending on how I feel will depend on which goal I push myself to reach:

Goal A – Finish the race in under 2:22:55 (11:30 pace) – Given that I’ve been struggling recently with heat and humidity during all of my runs, especially my long runs, I’m not sure that it will be realistic to push myself much more than an 11:30 minute per mile pace on Sunday.  This already will be a stretch for me given my recent long run paces.

Goal B – Finish the race in under 2:26:01 (11:45 pace) – My finish time when I ran this race in 2014 was 2:25:47 (11:44 pace), so reaching my B goal will likely also result in a PR.

Goal C – Finish the race in under 2:29:08 (12:00 pace) – If the weather isn’t on my side Sunday morning and/or my legs struggle to recover from the hills during the front half of the race then I need to accept that its okay for this to be a slower race for me.

I’m not going to lie, its hard to see these slower times and paces in the goals that I have set for myself.  However, I would much rather be realistic and honest with myself than risk pushing myself too hard during the height of marathon training.

QOTD: When you set goals for yourself do you try to be realistic or do you try and shoot for the stars?

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 10

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Another week of being away from home called for another week of flexibility when it came to my training.  You can plan everything to a T, but then factors like the weather that are completely out of your control require you to adapt and modify as necessary.  Two days of travel also impacted my training schedule for the week, but I’m still pleased with the workouts that I was able to complete.

Monday, August 6th

I kicked off the week with another scenic run in Miami.  I started off my 4.25 mile run by running through some of the neighborhood streets in Coconut Grove, which is where our hotel was, and then finished my run on the waterfront at Dinner Key Marina.  Once again the Miami heat and humidity challenged me, but I refused to let it stop me from completing my run.  After my run I completed a 0.75 mile cool down walk, and then later that afternoon did 30 minutes of water aerobics at the hotel pool.

Its hard to be disappointed about a slow run when you get to enjoy gorgeous views while running.

Tuesday, August 7th

For my last workout in Miami I headed to the gym where I spent 45 minutes on the elliptical and followed that up with 25 minutes of weight training.

Wednesday, August 8th

I spent the majority of the day flying from Miami back to central Illinois.  It was a bittersweet day of travel for me because although I left my husband behind in Miami to complete his temporary work assignment I was reunited with my little man later that afternoon.  That evening we went to see the local minor league baseball team play. Although this left me with no time to work out spending time with little man was a much higher priority.

Thursday, August 9th

Midday I took little man for a walk around the neighborhood, and then after my mom got home from work I headed to the gym to complete my run on the treadmill.  After a couple of very hot and humid runs in Miami, I was in desire of a break from running in the brutal summer weather, but unfortunately I didn’t find much reprieve at the gym.  It felt hotter and stuffier than usual at the gym.  As the woman on the treadmill next to me said as we both finished up, “That was a tough run.”  Despite it being a difficult day for a run I still completed all five of my planned miles, and did so with negative splits.

It might have been a tough run but I’m still smiling because I finished.

Friday, August 10th

My original plan for the week was to complete my long run on Sunday.  However, after keeping a close eye on the weather forecast at home, and seeing that there was an 80% chance of thunderstorms all day long, I didn’t want to risk having to run 16 miles on the treadmill.  So even though I had just run 24 hours earlier, I decided that completing my long run Friday evening was my best decision.  Due to running on tired legs, as well as the high heat and humidity, it wound up being one of my most challenging runs ever.  After a busy day with little man I headed out in a feels like temperature of 93 degrees.  I quickly drank all of the water in my hydration vest.  Thankfully I had a couple of dollars on me so just past the 9 mile mark I stopped a gas station to buy a bottle of water.  During that brief stop my legs locked up though and I struggled from the moment that I left the gas station.  At times during the last 7 miles my run felt more like a shuffle, and I had to take extra walk breaks, but I refused to give up and still finished all 16 miles.

My last run on the trail in my hometown was quite the challenging one. I’m hopeful that pushing through on hot and humid days will make me stronger come race day.

Saturday, August 11th

Little man and I spent the day traveling home from Illinois.  There simply wasn’t time, or energy, to workout.

Sunday, August 12th

Given that my legs were still incredibly tired and sore from my tough 16 miler, I decided that another rest day was the smarter choice than trying to push through and still get a workout in.  I didn’t feel guilty about my choice whatsoever.

Total Weekly Mileage – 32.89 miles (3.44 miles more than week 9)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 270.09 miles

QOTD: Do you take extra rest days after challenging long runs?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Weeks 8 and 9

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Its never easy to keep up with a regular training schedule when you’re traveling.  It takes a lot of planning, focus, and dedication in order to make sure that you can still get all of your workouts in when you’re away from home.  I’ve been away and out of my regular routine for a couple of weeks now has, which made my marathon training a bit more challenging than usual, but I’ve also been more eager than ever to get my workouts in.

Week 8:

Monday, July 23rd

I was very eager to get my run in first thing, mainly driven by the fact that little man and I had a busy midday and evening schedule.  I knew that getting my run in later in the day would be incredibly challenging, if not near impossible.  It had been storming for a couple of days in a row at this point, but after closely tracking the weather forecast I thought that I had just a long enough break in the rain to get my run in.  Boy was I proven wrong!  It was drizzling when I left the house just after 6:30 a.m. and was pouring less than two miles into my run.  Around 2.5 miles I knew that it was time to call it quits, and thankfully my husband came to rescue me.  I don’t think I’ve ever gotten so drenched so quickly!

That was one run that I don’t think will ever be forgotten!

Tuesday, July 24th

Since it was my last day at home before the big trip, I had quite the lengthy to do list, but I was also eager to get to my home gym for one last good workout.  After 35 minutes on the elliptical and 30 minutes of weight training, the fact that I was drenched in sweat was a sign that I’d gotten that good workout in.

Wednesday, July 25th

Between flying to Illinois with little man and celebrating my dad’s birthday that evening it was a long, tiring day.  I didn’t have it in me to workout after such an early start to the day.

Little man was very excited about singing “Happy Birthday” to his Papa

Thursday, July 26th

Despite the fact that it was incredibly hot and humid for my first run in Illinois I was very excited about being able to run on the trail in my hometown.  I always love being able to run on the trail there!  After my run I walked another 1.19 miles.

It might have been an incredibly hot and humid run but regardless I always love being able to run on the Constitution Trail.

Friday, July 27th

Because of plans that we had on Saturday to take little man to a local farm I opted to move my long run for the week to Friday morning.  Despite the near perfect running weather, my body was tired and my pace quickly slowed as the miles increased.  I rarely run two days in a row, so I’m not surprised or disappointed by that.  I’m just glad that I was able to move my long run and still spend time with the family the next morning.

It was a gorgeous morning for a long summer run. It felt like 66 degrees at the beginning of my run and only 72 degrees 14 miles later.

Saturday, July 28th

After a busy morning at a local farm and little man’s nap, he was eager to spend even more time outside so my sister and I took him for a long walk, which included a stop at a neighborhood playground.  All three of us enjoyed our time outside together.

Sunday, July 29th

To close out the week I utilized my Gold’s Gym travel pass and headed to the gym in my hometown.  I left the gym with sore muscles after spending 35 minutes on the elliptical and doing a 45 minute long full body weight training workout.

Total Weekly Mileage – 32.65 miles (13.06 miles more than week 7)

Week 2:

Monday, July 30th

Monday was another long travel day for me.  I had an early morning flight out of the regional airport five minutes down the street from my parents’ house, a connection at O’Hare, and then flew to Miami where I met my husband.  He is on a temporary assignment for work in Miami, but took a couple of days off early in the week so that we could celebrate our wedding anniversary together.  We were very happy to be reunited on our 7th wedding anniversary, which we celebrated by driving down to Key Largo.  We had a low key celebration during our two nights there, but it was what we needed after such a busy couple of summer weeks.  By the end of the day I was far too exhausted from traveling to get a workout in.

On our hotel balcony in Key Largo

Tuesday, July 31st

I closed out the month with a five mile progression run on the treadmill.  The hotel gym was quite hot and steamy, partly driven by how hot and humid it was outside that morning, but despite the conditions I pushed through and got it done.  Afterwards I walked an additional mile, and later that afternoon did 15 minutes of water aerobics.

With this run I met my July mileage goal of 115 miles!

Wednesday, August 1st

Wednesday morning we drove back to Miami and had lunch with friends who were on their way to the Caribbean and had a very long layover in Miami.  After picking them up from the airport we had lunch at an adorable Cuban restaurant in Little Havana, after which we walked around the neighborhood.  According to Apple Health I walked over three miles that afternoon.

Thursday, August 2nd

Between my run and walking from the hotel to both Starbucks for breakfast and Subway for lunch I got quite a few miles in on Thursday.  I ran 5.50 miles on the hotel treadmill and did 40 minutes of full body weight training.  Altogether I logged over nine and a half miles for the day.

I’m not letting the Miami heat and humidity stop me from getting my miles in.

Friday, August 3rd

I kicked off my Friday at the gym where I spent 45 minutes on the elliptical and did 25 minutes of weight training.  I was feeling quite strong and sweaty at the end of my workout.

Strong is beautiful (and sweaty).

Saturday August 4th

I knew that this would be a challenging run because of the Miami heat and humidity but after having already completed two runs on the treadmill for the week I didn’t want to also complete my long run on it.  So instead, I headed out and braved the elements.  I had 8 miles on plan for the day, but wound up pushing myself to run 9 instead.  It wasn’t easy, and maybe I was delirious from the beautiful scenery, but I felt quite accomplished by the end of my run.  Afterwards I walked another half mile.

The beautiful scenery along Biscayne Bay

During a very brief stop on the Rickenbacker Causeway

It was a very slow and steady run but I got the job done.

Sunday, August 5th

My legs were quite sore from Saturday’s long run.  I more than earned my rest day.

Total Weekly Mileage – 29.45 miles (3.20 miles less than week 8)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 237.20 miles

QOTD: How do you stay motivated to keep up with your training while traveling?

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

Posted in Chicago Marathon Training, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 56 Comments

August 2018 Goals

With a lot of focus, dedication, and persistence, I managed to meet the majority of my July goals.  Doing so certainly wasn’t without any challenges, mainly since I’ve been home with little man for the summer and his schedule, needs, and interests trump my own desire to workout.

1.  Log at least 115 miles.

Grade: A

My mileage total for July was 115.2 miles, 73 miles of which I ran.  That brings my 2018 total mileage to 643.4 miles.  At the end of June I was 75 miles shy of being on track with my 2018 mileage goal of 1,200 miles, and July’s hard work made brought me even closer to being on track.  I’m now just under 57 miles shy of being on track.

I closed out July with a 5 mile progression run on the hotel treadmill in Key Largo

2.  Work out at least six days per week.

Grade: B+

When I set this goal for myself I knew that it would be a huge challenge.  With numerous rainy days in July, it made it impossible for little man and I to spend as much time outside as we would have liked to.  This resulted in fewer stroller runs and walks, and thus limited my ability some days to work out.  I worked out at least five days every week, so I’m considering that a success.

3.  Weight train at least two days per week.

Grade: A

After several months of having this goal for myself, I finally reached it.  Wahoo!

4.  Stay on track while away from home.

Grade: A

Not only have I made my fitness a priority during all of my summer travels, but I’ve also been trying to make mostly healthy eating decisions.  Not only am I happy with the decisions that I’ve been making but I feel good too.

After a successful and productive July I’m incredibly motivated to make August just as great of a month as July was.

1.  Log at least 130 miles.

My goal is to log at least 15 miles more than I did in July.  Fingers crossed that this goal is able to be met, especially once I’m back to work mid-August.

2.  Work out at least six days per week.

Even though this was a stretch for me last month, I want to challenge myself with this goal again in August.  We’ll see what happens!

3.  Focus on healthy eating.

Even while being away from home there are plenty of healthy food options to choose from.  While in Illinois I focused on limiting my snacking (its definitely tempting to snack around the clock when your active toddler loves to snack!), and will do so when I return to Illinois next week.  While I’m in Florida with my husband (who is here on a temporary assignment for work), I’m focusing on making healthy meal choices, especially when we’re out to eat at a restaurant.

4.  Continue to stay on track while away from home.

This applies to both healthy eating as well as staying on track with my marathon training.  The Chicago Marathon will be here before I know it!

QOTD: What are your goals for August?

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Friday Five – Potpourri v. 23

Happy Friday everybody!  If your week has been like mine, its been a jam packed one filled with lots of activity and excitement.  What has made this week so busy?

1.  Monday afternoon little man and I drove to just south of Baltimore to celebrate one of my best friend’s, and his godmother’s, birthday.  It was a low key birthday celebration and we had a wonderful birthday dinner celebrating her.

Little man helping his Auntie Becca blow out her birthday candles

2.  On Wednesday little man and I flew out to Central Illinois to visit my family.  We kicked off our time here with another birthday celebration, this time for my dad, as his birthday was on Wednesday.  My mom invited some good friends over for dinner and we ended the evening with singing “Happy Birthday” to my dad before enjoying some cheesecake for dessert.

Little man was very excited about singing “Happy Birthday” to his Papa

3.  One of the many things that I had been looking forward to about our visit was being able to run on the trail in my hometown.  I completed Thursday’s run on the trail, and am looking forward to logging even more miles on it while I’m here.

After completing my first of what will be several runs here in Central Illinois for this trip

4.  Summer is just flying by so I’m trying my best to soak in as many special moments with little man as I can.  Yesterday afternoon my sister and I took little man to a local park, which among other things has a splash pad and a playground, both of which we played at yesterday.  All three of us had a fun afternoon together.

Having fun at the playground with little man

5.  Playing at the park brought back memories of my wedding day, as it was at the same park where my wedding photos were taken.  Monday marks seven years of marriage for my husband and I.  The years have just flown by!

Photo Credit: Mark Romine Photography

QOTD: What is one highlight from your week?

I’m linking up for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup.  Many thanks to the wonderful ladies at Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy for hosting!

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Chicago Marathon Training Log – Week 7

On October 7th I will be running the Chicago Marathon as a member of Team Ronald McDonald House Charities.  Please consider visiting my fundraising page and supporting this worthy cause.  Thanks!

Last week was one of those weeks that started off great and then slowly got worse as the week went on.  At least it was that way when it came to my fitness.  I know that everybody has those weeks every now and then but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating to deal with when it happens.

Monday, July 16th

I was able to escape for a solo run after my husband got home from work.  There had been a mid-afternoon thunderstorm which left me facing very high humidity during my run.  The humidity forced me to take a couple of extra walk breaks during my run, but I refused to let the humidity get the best of me and still completed my planned 45 minute run.  After running 4.20 miles I walked an additional three quarters of a mile.

Drenched in sweat from running on a very humid evening

Tuesday, July 17th

I spent Tuesday evening at the gym where I spent 35 minutes on the elliptical and another 35 minutes doing full body weight training.  I felt strong when I left the gym, and had I had more time I might have worked out even longer.

Wednesday, July 18th

Wednesday’s run was one of those runs when I felt like I could have kept running and running and running.  Little man and I completed six miles together, and after pushing the stroller for six miles I let him walk and push the stroller the rest of the way home.

Little man and I both got some exercise Wednesday morning. He loved when I gave him the opportunity to push his stroller home.

Thursday, July 19th

It was during Thursday evening’s gym workout when things started going downhill.  I felt fine during my 30 minutes on the elliptical, but during my 30 minutes of weight training I felt progressively weaker and weaker.  It was far from my greatest workout, as I felt weak, but I kept telling myself than any workout was better than nothing at all.

Friday, July 20th

Since I had planned to do my long run on Saturday, Friday was a planned rest day.

Saturday, July 21st

Unfortunately, things did not go as planned over the weekend.  I woke up Saturday morning with a sinus headache, which instead of getting better throughout the day only got worse.  By Saturday evening it had turned into a migraine.  I went to bed hoping that I would feel better the next day and that I’d be able to still complete my planned 8 mile long long run for the week.

Sunday, July 22nd

Unfortunately, my migraine was worse the next morning.  The idea of trying to push myself to run 8 miles made me sick to my stomach.  After taking a nap while little man took his afternoon nap I felt well enough to be able to head out for a family walk.  While I hate that I had to skip my long run for the week, deep down I know that it was the right decision.  Thankfully this past week was a cut back week and I didn’t mess up increasing my long run mileage.

Walking 3 miles was better than not getting any miles in at all.

Total Weekly Mileage – 19.59 miles (11.50 miles less than week 6)

Total Chicago Marathon Mileage – 175.10 miles

QOTD:

I’m linking up with Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap link up.  Be sure to check out their posts as well.

Posted in Chicago Marathon Training, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 43 Comments