Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Everyone Has An Opinion + Carb Overload

Ain't that the truth.  I have to begin by saying that I feel better than I did yesterday.  I'm not sure if it's from the anti-inflammatory, the chiropractor, or both.  He's convinced it's NOT sciatica.  Well, what is it then?  Like most chiro's, he thinks it's poor posture.  I'm sure that has something to do with it but then what explains the herniated disc in my lower back and it pushing down on the sciatic nerve?  Hmm.  Anyway, the adjustment felt good - I cracked a lot.  He advised me to do plie squats while standing on my toes, until I felt my legs shake, then stand up and repeat a few times.  I'm used to this from a few different work outs I've done so I did that last night as well as wrapped my sore area with Saran and an Ace bandage to keep it warm and the blood flowing.  That makes sense but I know ice also helps with inflammation.  Just confusing!

If it's not raining, I'm going to take a short walk during my lunch.  There's a nice path behind my office.  Then, he wants to see me again tonight for another adjustment and probably again Thursday or Friday.  He says I should be able to run the half by Sunday.  I'm not getting my hopes up, but we will see.

On another note - I've been eating a lot of carbs the last few days.  I know the more bread or pasta I eat, the more I crave them and the more hungry I am.  Last night I had a slice of pizza (first time in a WHILE) and zucchini sticks.  This morning I had half of a muffin and I brought leftover ravioli for lunch!  Oof.  It was in the fridge and I'd rather save $7 than buying lunch.  Tonight we'll have steak with a veggie and salad.

I signed up for hot yoga on Groupon - 10 classes for $29!  You can't really beat that.  I think I'll start next week.

Have a good Tuesday!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Monday, Monday

I was *this close* to staying in bed this morning, however I hate calling out sick and I'm still relatively new.  I didn't sleep well at all - tossed & turned all night.  I wonder if a more firm mattress will be better for my back.  Currently my hips are killing me sitting down.  I keep standing up to stretch.

Tonight I'm going to the chiropractor - first time ever.  Not thrilled about someone touching me and cracking me but whatever.  On that note, Saturday after I got a manicure, I went across the street to get a 30 minute massage.  The lady told me to get undressed and I told her "No."  I know it's not the same effect but I just wasn't comfortable and not in the best of moods.  Plus it's not a fancy schmancy massage parlor.  The closest real massage I've ever had was in Jamaica.  On the beach.  In my bathing suit.  Farthest I think I'll go to nude - ha.  Anyway, I can't say the massage helped because I'm still extremely sore.

Yesterday, Saro ran 10 miles in about 1 hour, 45 minutes which is AMAZING.  I'm very happy for him!  I think he will complete the half in about 2 & 1/4 hours.  I walked 6 miles and was in pain on and off during it.  At least if I don't do it, I'll know I had an influence on him and that he finished.

I know it's not the worst thing in the world to drop out of the half but if I still feel the same in 6 days, I'm going to have to.  Unless the chiropractor somehow works wonders, I think I will be on the side line.  I think the pain is getting worse and not better.  Yesterday I figured, let me try to speed walk as fast as I can and as long as I can stay under 15 min/mi, I'm good.  Let me tell you, that's not easy.  It's borderline jogging.  You have to walk REALLY fast and remind yourself to stay at that pace.  I think jogging is actually easier!  My body just can't take the impact right now.  I started around 14:30 and ended at 15:30 min/mi.

On a better note, I'm excited I won Kate's book giveaway!  I hope you have a good Monday and week ahead :)

Friday, April 26, 2013

Bad News Friday

I left the orthpedic in tears last night.  Not just or 2 - borderline ugly crying.  In front of the doctor and nurse, I held it back but he could tell I was upset.  I knew a while back that as I was increasing mileage, my body wasn't likin' it.  However, I chose to ignore it and keep going.  I mean, training for a half marathon shouldn't be easy and you should be hurting SOMEWHAT, right?!  I've been taking vitamins, NSAIDS, glucosamine, icing, etc.

Saro also said that I should consider "retiring" from long distance running after the half we are about to run.  Retiring from running after only 1 year of it and I'm not even 30!  Mind you, he's my #1 fan and I dragged him into this with me.  He hates running.  I'm not sure if now he still hates it - I doubt it.  He's lost 30 lbs in a year from running and eating better.  So last night I told him to keep going if he wants to.  I'd want him to and I'd be there to cheer him on.  Luckily, he hasn't had any major pains during this training.

The diagnosis - sciatica caused from lumbar radiculopathy and a degenerative disc in my lower back.  In simple terms, the disc in my lower back is pushing down on my sciatic nerve and causing this horrible pain.  He examined me and some moves hurt, while others didn't.  I thought it was going to be tendinitis in my hip, but no.  The pain starts in my lower back, goes to my left hip area, twists around through my hamstring and ends at the back of my knee.  Just lovely.

I really liked the doctor.  He took his time with me, asked me a lot of questions, am I wearing the right shoes, etc. and I asked him a bazillion questions too.  He said a LOT of orthopedics are going to essentially say that running is not good.  Walking at 4.2 MPH, biking and swimming are much better.  He said what I knew in the back of my mind, but didn't want to say myself and was hoping he wouldn't say.  "Some people are not built to run."

Anyway, he gave me a 6 day anti inflammatory so I'll try that and yes, I'm going to attempt the half marathon.  I am not, however, running until then.  Unless I feel 80% better on Monday or Tuesday, I'll do a few miles.

I've worked hard the last 14 months and even more so the last 11 weeks during this training.  I'll try to run as much as I can and if I have to stop and walk, then so be it.

Thanks for reading and sorry for the Debbie Downer Friday post.  I am very glad it's Friday and that I'm off tomorrow.  I'll spend the weekend outside.  It's supposed to be in the high 60s here in Jersey.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Celebrate Your True Beauty Link Up!

Today I'm linking up with Erin at Homemade Happenings, Jodi at Love and Crayons and Alicia at Brew Mama.  I've been reading Erin's blog for a while and am looking forward to reading Jodi and Alicia's now too :)

Ok, so here goes.

1.)  My eyes.  They're blue (thanks Dad!) and while I don't take compliments well, people always compliment how nice my eyes are.  This reminds me that my teenage boyfriend used to call me dolphin and other sea related names because my eyes reminded him of the ocean - LOL!!

2.) My hands.  Weird, I know.  I used to not like them but now that I'm "older" I can appreciate that I have long, skinny fingers and nice nail beds.

3.)  Now for inner beauty.  Is it bad that I have to think about this for a minute?  Ok, I love that I'm reliable.  That includes little things like being on time to work, returning phone calls, being somewhere when I say I'll be there, or if it's 3am and a friend needs me.  Although that hasn't happened in a while *ahem* late drunk nights.  I think that's a good quality for anyone to have, but I'm glad I have it.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

They See Me Rollin'

Well, more money spent last night on a new pair of Brooks as well as a foam roller.  I'm kind of freaking out because I'm still in significant pain after Sunday's run.  I didn't run last night and still feel like I can't/shouldn't tonight.  I try to avoid using the word "can't" when it comes to exercising, but I don't want to make it worse when the race is so close. 

The foam roller will help open up my hips and let me tell you, that sh*t HURTS, but felt good afterwards.

The pain goes from my hip (as I take a step) and twists down to my inner thigh/knee.  The doctor I'm going to tomorrow, I've never been to, so hopefully he can help.  It's only 10 days away!!!  I'm staying as positive as possible.

I'm glad I got the new shoes though...huge difference and maybe that will help with the hip issues.  The "old" shoes aren't even that old (6 months) but apparently in the runner's world, that's ancient.  So, they're retired and I can use them in the garden or something.

On another note, I'm glad to see that the weather here in Northern NJ will be nice, warm & sunny for at least the next week!  I'm hoping to plant my front pots and do some other things in the yard.  We are hoping to do a large vegetable garden this year so I'm excited for that as well as the local farmer's market opening in a few weeks - love that on Sundays!

Do you like yard work/gardening or find it to be more of a chore?

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

9 Miles, Hair Color & Nice Weather

It's still a little cooler than we'd like it to be, but it was overall a nice, sunny weekend.  Murphy & I had a lot of fun in the yard on Sunday.  He was running around in circles for hours.  Needless to say, he was pooped by late afternoon.

My cousin does my hair, so I had an early appointment Saturday morning for a root touch up - goodbye grays!  Yup, 29 and they're pretty noticeable.  Good thing my hair is light though. 

Saturday afternoon we went for 9 miles and here are the results:

Duration - 1:40:20
Pace - 11:08 min/mi
Distance: 9.00 miles (not even 1/10th more LOL)

I felt good throughout.  I actually got a different water belt - the new one just has one 8oz bottle rather than two 16 oz.  which was a little heavy and bulky.  It was definitely nice to have water during that long run HOWEVER, I experienced lower back pain all Saturday night and in to Sunday.  I feel okay today but not 100% and my hip is a little achy.  I'm staying positive as I got to the dr. on Thursday.  This week I will work on core.

I am happy with those results.  If I stay around that time for the half, I should finish in 2 hours and 20 minutes, approximately.  Who knows, the inspiration from other runners and the crowd might boost me up a bit!

Happy Tuesday & enjoy your week!

Friday, April 19, 2013

New Blog Design!

Thanks to Hubby Jack!  I picked out the color combo and he did the rest.  What do you think?!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Running Ain't Cheap

They recommend you get new running sneakers every 400 miles or 4 months, whichever comes 1st.  What if you don't run that much in 4 months and they're in your closet more than on your feet?  I think it should go by milage, no?  For cripes sake, they're like $120!

Hmm, oh well.  They can become walking shoes or I can donate 'em.  They look brand new.

I also just spent a pretty penny on compression socks, more beans & gels and more KT tape for my knee and hip.  The first roll I bought wasn't sticking too well so this time I went and got the PRO... for $20 that stuff better stick to my skin for 3-4 days.  Seriously, it's supposed to stick that long.

Compared to other sports/hobbies, it's not that bad.  The socks should last a long time and it's something I enjoy.

17 more days until the big day.  I think I have everything I need!  Oh, except I need a new arm band for my phone.  The velcro has worn off.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Not A Quitter

Five miles was on the schedule for last night.  I knew my lower legs were sore but I'm asking myself - why am I this sore after over a YEAR of running and being active 3-4x a week?!  I'm finally going to the doctor next Thursday after work so I'm going to ask a bunch of questions.  I'm normally not THIS sore.  At work yesterday, I kept stretching my calves and shins under my desk, thinking that would help prepare me for the 5 miles ahead.  It didn't.

The new water belts arrived so I figured I'd try it out to get used to how it feels while running.  I had to adjust it a bit, but it was nice to have some water when needed.  It also fit my phone and house key.  At mile TWO, I felt like crying.  Nicely, Saro was slowing down to wait for me even though I told him to keep going.

I'm supposed to run another 5 tomorrow but I won't.  Tonight I'm working at the PT job and tomorrow I have a work dinner right after work.  I might do an easy 3 miles on Friday, but I'm not sure yet.  Sunday is 9 miles.

I stayed at around 12 minutes/mile last night which is slow for me but I'm glad I finished.

My left calf felt like it was stuck in flex mode.  Imagine flexing your calf and it being stuck like that - that's how it felt and my shins were screaming and I felt shooting pains.

Finished...standing on the outside of our yard.

Fake smile mid run.

Anyway, to the water cooler I go!

Have a good day.

Monday, April 15, 2013

10K PR

Yesterday afternoon we set out for the last day of week 9 of the training program.  We ran on a paved trail that actually is right behind my office and goes on for about 6 miles.  We went to 3.1 and turned back to make it an even 6.2 (10K).  I'm not doing any more than I'm supposed to, lol.  As a matter of fact, I've been skipping the Thursday runs because I feel I need to rest for a few days before the long Sunday runs.  It definitely helps.  My first mile was JUST under 10 minutes - 9:58.  Then I always slow down.  Anyway, here are the results:

Distance - 6.2 miles
Pace - 10:46 min/mi
Time: 1 hour, 6 minutes, 44 seconds.

This is my PR for 10K distance.

If I can keep this pace up at the half, I should finish in about 2 & 1/2 hours.  Two and a half hours of non stop running.  It hasn't hit me yet.  I know I'm going to be extremely nervous the day before and morning of.  But, I know I have 3 hours and 15 minutes to finish if worst comes to worst.

I'm excited to get my new water belt from Amazon.  With my credit card rewards, it came to $20 and change for two of them.

Saro is quicker than me and usually passes me but I don't mind.  Originally we were going to stick together during the half and maybe we still will but I told him to just keep going and he can wait for me at the finish :)  Soon, he will need a new wardrobe.  His clothes are falling off of him!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Food Shopping Trip

Here's my shopping trip from last night.  Short & sweet.  I was going to write everything I bought but it was a LOT.  It included paper products, HABA stuff, lots of produce, ground turkey, nuts, etc.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Couponing & Good Deals!

Does anyone else feel tempted when they receive emails from stores to "Save 50% on EVERYTHING!  TODAY ONLY!"  LOL... I know they'll have the sale again but I'm always like - OMG I NEED TO BUY SOMETHING.  Marketing.....it works.

I love to save money - who doesn't?  But, certain things I go for are pretty pricey - especially things for the home.  *Ahem* Pottery Barn *Ahem*

I like Home Goods but I get frustrated there sometimes because it's usually so crowded.  Or, I'll find one of something that I need two of.

Mean Ang taught me most of my couponing skills.  Head over to her page to see some of her recent shopping trips.  I plan on food shopping tonight with some coupons I clipped from the paper and some I printed from online.  Living Rich With Coupons is a great site.  You can select your store and they match up this week's sales with coupons.  The key is to clip any coupons for items you may use and SAVE THEM.  Most are good for 4-6 weeks, sometimes more.  Try to save them until they're on sale and then purchase them.  Coupons.com is good, too.

Sometimes it's hard when you're eating healthy but most coupons I use are for almond milk, eggs, nuts, tomato sauce, yogurt, coffee, frozen vegetables, household items & paper products.

Also, sign up for Ebates here and before you shop online, go to ebates first and THEN go to the store you're shopping at.  You'll get cash back every few months, up to 10% sometimes!  My rebate from online Christmas shopping was close to $100!

I'll post my shopping trip tomorrow but for now here's my small deal from CVS last night.  I had earned $2.50 in CVS extra bucks from a prior purchase and then I had a $2 coupon off $10 spent on deodorant.  Luckily, my deodorant was on special.  Buy one, get $2 CVS extra bucks for each one.

(3) Ban deodorant = $12.87
$12.87 - $4.50 coupons = $8.37 and then I earned $6 more extra bucks so technically, $2.37 for 3 deodorants, or $6 off my next transaction at CVS :)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Overnight Oats & 5 Miles On The Horizon

Last night I decided to make overnight oats.  I've seen a few people post about it.  I looked up some recipes online and came up with this one (I used flax seeds instead of chia seeds).

3/4 cup oats
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1 TBSP natural peanut butter (I use Smucker's)
1 TBSP raw honey (I use Trader Joe's)
1 tsp flax seed

Mix and refrigerate over night.  This morning, I added about 2 more TBSP almond milk and warmed up the oatmeal.  It came out really good!  This made enough for 3-4 servings.  I had one egg also.

I haven't food shopped in a couple of weeks!  Well a BIG shop, anyway.  Last night we ate out and tonight, well, I took some ground beef out of the freezer so maybe a burger with whatever frozen vegetables we have, lol.  Sometimes it's good to clean out the fridge/freezer/pantry I guess.

I'm still pretty sore from Sunday's run but tonight is 5 miles.  Seems easy but we'll see.  My legs are real stiff.  Then 5 miles again on Thursday but we might do it Friday. 

On a side note, do you have a favorite all inclusive resort you like to go to, in the Caribbean or Mexico?  Feel free to share!  Thanks  and enjoy your day... I just went out at lunch time and it's 85 degrees here 20 miles west of NYC.  Nice!!

Monday, April 8, 2013

8 Miler

Happy Monday!  This weekend was good.  I worked at the PT job on Saturday (all day) then went to a local running store for some advice.  We spent a good 45 minutes there, talking to a very helpful associate.  He recommended that I try KT tape for my knee and hip and he said I'm in the right shoes (he watched me run on the treadmill) but that I should get a new pair before the half marathon.  Ugh, $$!  They say to get a new pair every 4 months or 500 miles, which ever comes first.  If I don't run 500 miles in 4 months, why get a new pair?  Lol.

Saturday night we took Saro's daughters out to an Asian restaurant.  I had a yummy pad thai dish.

Sunday I was off and we went for the 8 miler around 10:00.  My results are as follows:

Distance - 8 mi.
Pace: 11:14 min/mi
Duration: 1:29:53

I had some energy jelly beans before and during the run.  This helped with the nausea for sure.  I'm going to invest in a small handheld water bottle.  They're about $15.  Just to sip during long runs - my mouth gets super dry.

Tonight I think I will rest.  The calves and shins are pretty sore.

Have a good day!

Friday, April 5, 2013

First Flywheel

Last night I went to my first Flywheel spin class with Mean Ang and a few other friends.  I really liked it.  I burned between 525-600 calories in 45 minutes.  My butt is hurting today from the seat but other than that, I feel good.  It was nice to switch up my work out from running!  My knee and hip felt good the whole time which is a plus.

For those of you you aren't familiar, Flywheel is a new indoor cycling company (aka: spin).  The lights are off in the room and there's a dim spot light on the instructor.  It really works your entire body and they even incorporate arms at the end.  I would definitely go back!  It's pretty close to home - 15-20 minutes away.

Tonight I think I will rest.  Tomorrow I'm working at the PT job all day and then hopefully getting the 8 miles done, unless I'm off on Sunday - then Sunday morning might be better.  It's not that the PT job is hard or tiring but I have to be up at 5:30 to get there by 6:30, so when I get home at 3, I usually feel dead.

It has been really nice to sleep until 7:15 versus 6:15 with the new FT job.  I feel much more rested.  I still fall asleep by 10 or 11, so I get 8-9 hours of sleep.  *Knock on wood* I don't have sleeping problems and hopefully never will.  I do wear ear plugs to mute Saro's snoring, though!  Lol.

I think after the half marathon, we're going to work on obtaining a better time for 5K distance, and I want to get back into Jillian Michaels DVDs.  I really like the 30 Day Shred and her 6 weeks to 6 pack DVD.

Currently, what is your favorite work out?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Another LOFT trip

I had to return something to LOFT last night after work and of course I didn't leave empty handed.  I left with a long, flowy skirt (good for spring and summer), a top and jean shorts.  Here's a picture!  Everything was 50% off & I spent $52 on the 3 items - not bad.

Today was my 100th day logging in to My Fitness Pal.  It has actually been more but I forgot to log in on Christmas Day!  It has been pretty close to a year.

Tonight is Flywheel class!

That's really all I've got for today.  Oh and it's looking like it will FINALLY warm up here in NJ.  It was 29 this morning but should be 53 by 3:00. 

Have a good day!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Exercise Line Up

When I got home from work last night, I ate dinner and didn't move from the couch.  So from 7-11 I watched TV, which I rarely do.  My stomach was still feeling funny and I'm not sure if it was from the 7 mile run on Sunday or if I had a little stomach bug.  I didn't lose my appetite (wish I had though)!

Here is the rest of this week's exercise schedule:

Tonight - 4.5 miles
Tomorrow - 4.4 miles + strength
Thursday - I'm trying a Flywheel spin class with Angela.
Friday - Rest
Saturday - 8 miles (supposed to be Sunday but we're taking Saro's daughters to a comic convention).

Only about a month until the half marathon!  I took off work the following day because I'm pretty sure I'll need the day off to rest.

I'd like to think I'm in pretty good shape at this point.  I'm not that sore after running anymore - just experiencing more joint pain but barely any muscle pain.  Big difference from a year ago!

Have a good night - this week is flying so far :)

Monday, April 1, 2013

7 miles & High Calories

I was off from the FT job on Friday but went to help Saro at his store (we work for the same company, different locations).  It was fun and the day flew - I know some people who work there so it was nice to see them.  Friday night we went out for sushi.  TMI - lately sushi hasn't been "agreeing" with me.  It was still good though, ha.

Saturday I was off from both jobs.  I was still up by 7:00 and at Trader Joe's by 8:00 - wanted to beat the rush.  I picked up some things for Easter, then cleaned the house and baked a cake.  The chocolate cake recipe called for espresso powder which I didn't have so I omitted it - it came out great if you're ever not sure whether you can omit it or not. 

It was also my Mom's birthday so I had lunch with her and my sis in law.  We went out for Mexican.  I had a salad but also a margarita.  It was NOT a low calorie weekend!  Yikes.

I worked Sunday morning and then we set out for 7 miles.  I really wasn't feeling it at all.  The more miles added, the more nervous I get - not sure why.  I know I can do it but with all the different pains I've experienced, it just makes me feel uneasy.  The half marathon is only 5 weeks away.  Here are the results:

Distance: 7 miles
Pace: 11:19 min/mi
Duration: 1:19:13

The last mile was all up a steep hill so that was pretty terrible.  Before the hill, my avg. time was under 11 min/mi but then it slowed down.  Oh well!  I'm glad I finished however I was extremely nauseous all day after that.  I'm still feeling a little queezy but better for the most part.

I didn't have too much pain yesterday but the knee was a little sore and the toe was losing circulation again.  I'm going to go to the shoe store this week hopefully and see what I can do about that.

No pictures today because they're not sending from my phone to my email...have a good day!