Apr. 20th, 2014 09:47 am
brdgt: (Mrs. Robinson Closer)
Just missed getting under 2 hours by 41 seconds, but still very happy.

This was the first race that I didn't feel nervous before, had fun the whole time (favorite moment: miles 10-12 me and this other guy realized we were trying to keep the same pace, without any eye contact or speaking used each other to push that pace through those tough last few miles), and felt great afterwards (feet and calves are a little sore, but nothing a hike today can't fix!).



Apr. 18th, 2014 05:07 pm
brdgt: (Cardio)
Reading: Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending for book club. A very approachable and interesting combination of psychology and business expertise on what really makes us happy. Some of it is very unsurprising (spend money on experiences, not things), but some of it is counterintuitive (that spending money on time-saving devices or services may not actually give you more time or happiness).

Wearing: My new favorite bright pink pants, a white button down top, white converse low tops, and my favorite pair of sunglasses - found in a restroom at the Great Dane after a frisbee game.

Picture 33

Planning: It's Nick's birthday today, although he skipped playing golf to celebrate because he hurt his ribs last night playing Ultimate. Since I have the Half Marathon tomorrow he is going out with friends and I'm calling it an early night (the race starts at 7AM). Next weekend we will celebrate with a trip to Arches and Canyonlands - first camping trip of the year!

brdgt: (Mrs. Robinson Closer)
Only one more long run before the half-marathon! Yesterday was an 11 mile run that went really well considering I skipped last week's long run, the first few miles it was raining, and the last few miles were uphill.

I have stepped up the fitness and eating habits that I learned from the last half-marathon training and definitely seen results - this is the first time in my life I have actually seen the *shape* of my body change (my legs and stomach in particular - both are more defined by muscle than anything else!).

My grocery trips are now focused around lean protein hunting - lots of salmon, quinoa, protein powder, and almond butter. I also have worked hard to eat more fruit, especially on the weekends, which has helped my post-long run recovery (I used to feel slightly disorientated and just a bit off for a few hours after a run longer than 9 miles). And don't worry my diet has always had enough carbs, veggies, and fat in it - this is about adding food, not taking things away.

I've also been experimenting with different mid-run supplements (conclusion: supplements with caffeine, like Clif Shot Bloks, are better just before a workout, while non-caffeinated gels, like Gu, are best mid-run for energy and recovery - for me, caffeine mid-workout contributes to feeling weird post-run).

Of course, the cross-training is also essential - cardio workouts for building muscles and aerobic capacity and yoga for deep stretching (I generally do not stretch at all pre or post run - studies show no real benefit and I feel no real benefit). I can't say enough about tempo runs and intervals - things I used to resist and now would never do without.

Which is all to say, this has been a hard, but rewarding process...

March 2014 workouts

(mapmyrun.com doesn't handle tempo or intervals runs well (my Wednesday runs), which why those days look so inconsistent. Spring Break effected my cross training due to available classes at the gym. That 8 mile run was supposed to be 10, but bonked and learned my lesson about mid-run supplements. Missed long run was supposed to be 11, but I was a wimp due to a snow storm and had built in enough buffer that I could still train fully and skip it.)


Feb. 25th, 2014 04:25 pm
brdgt: (Cardio)
Week 6

I'm almost halfway through my third half marathon training and I am really happy with the results. Since this time my goal isn't just to finish, it is really interesting to see how specific kinds of training can actually produce results (for me, increasing pace).

In addition to being increasingly confident that I'll be able to do the half-marathon in under 2 hours, I have seen my body change in ways that exercise has never done before.

My body is actually stronger - stronger legs produce faster paces, better aerobic capacity helps endurance, and eating the right fuel gives you the energy you need to do the things you want to.

I haven't really lost any weight (that's not a goal), but things that used to jiggle are now firm. Jumping up and down in cardio class this week I thought as I looked in the mirror, "huh, my thighs are staying right where they were." In fact, I'm not just stronger, I have actual defined muscles.

So, thank you Hal Higdon and lean protein!
brdgt: (Cardio)
Stats from MapMyRun, which I generally just use to import from my GPS, but it keeps my non-running workouts with my running ones, which is nice. Sadly, my Cardio Instructor has been sick this month so she canceled class this Wednesday and we didn't have class on MLK day.

This is following Hal Higdon's Intermediate Half Marathon Program, so - easy runs on Tuesday/Thursday, long run on Sunday, optional run on Saturday, and intervals/tempo runs on Wednesday.

January 2014 workouts
brdgt: (Mrs. Robinson Closer)

A friend recommended this book when we found out we would be moving to Utah. I'm sure some of you have read Desert Solitaire? Reading it as a historical document (it was published in 1968, when Utah's National Parks were new and didn't even have paved roads) helps to put his extreme libertarian elitism in perspective. His descriptions of the environment and people are fascinating and well written, his politics are deeply, deeply flawed.

Wearing: My batik Mountain Sun Brewery "Kind Ale" t-shirt (oh, Colorado... oh Boulder...), some jeans that haven't fit in a few years, warm socks, and a handmade bracelet from my best friend Kelly's daughter (kids these days and Justice, wtf?).


Planning: Nick is working late tonight (he found out his time slot for the upcoming big tropical cyclone conference and he got the prime evening spot on a panel about Hurricane Sandy with several big wigs - as one of his labmates said in response to finding out "wow, that could make your career if you give a good talk." So, you know, no pressure...) so I'm going to finish up the last season of Dr. Who so we have room on the DVR for the Olympics!

We really want to get out for a hike this weekend, but the inversion has been pretty bad this week (from "unhealthy to sensitive" to just plain "unhealthy") so we're afraid of both exerting ourselves too much in it (they advise against being outside more than hour a day) and if we could even see anything from a peak. A little bit of wind and some fresh snow in the mountains has made it slightly better though, so we're hopeful.

All this means a lot of running on an indoor track for half-marathon training.

Week 2
brdgt: (Cardio)
Started a "cardio pump" class at the gym this week (2Xweek of cardio and weights) and scheduled out a half marathon training program to run the Salt Lake City half marathon in April with a goal of under 2 hours. I was thinking of doing a destination half marathon, but I like the idea of running on terrain I know, saving money on travel, and the timing is right for starting a training program now.

I continue to use Fitocracy and MyFitnessPal. The former has a lot of technical problems, but I have met some very nice people with useful advice and support. The latter has been mostly for myself - to maintain my weight through being aware of calories and portions - but I just joined a challenge group that seems very supportive and flexible.

I don't have money in my budget for yoga classes or a climbing gym membership, but this keeps me busy enough right now!
brdgt: (Cardio)
I finally got to the doctor over some injuries I got falling down some stairs back in August. My insurance had to be changed since I moved and whoever coded the application did it wrong and it took two months to get my insurance done.

Anyway, I was bringing laundry down to the basement and combination of new staircase, poor visibility, forgotten turn in the steps = ouchie. I came down hard on one knee on the cement floor and the other shin scraped down the steps. It hurt like hell for a few days but after that it was fine (obviously, I've been running just fine), except it continued to "tingle" - like my knee and shin were "asleep."

My Sports Med doctors tells me this is all fine and normal. My knee has a bursa (a fluid sack) on it (and not a floating bone chip, like I feared) and my shin suffered nerve damage, but not of any major nerves. He said both may disappear within 6 months, or they may be there forever. Either way, they are harmless, as long as the bursa doesn't become red and feel hot (meaning it got infected) and the nerve pain changes to going transversely across my shin, instead of up and down it (meaning major nerves are effected - he said right now it's just segments of minor ones and that in fact, I'll know they are healing when they start hurting again instead of just tingling).

They did x-rays of my lower legs to be sure and I was told I have the knees of a 20 year old as far as arthritis wear is concerned and gave me some tips on preventing future running problems (my right leg naturally turns in and they told me that yoga, especially poses that exercise the abductor muscles like warrior 3, will be essential to being able to keep that leg in running shape).

I do love sports med doctors.
brdgt: (Mrs. Robinson Closer)
What a perfect weekend! Instead of going out to see a movie, we decided to stay in on Friday night - which was just the right decision. We are watching Community from the library, which lends you the entire season at a time, not just single discs! Cozy and relaxing.

Saturday morning I went and got an amazing pedicure at a local spa, thanks to a gift certificate from [livejournal.com profile] antarcticlust. On the way back (it's conveniently just about a mile away), I saw some trash on the curb that included these signs from someone's wedding. It's the kind of detail I wouldn't bother with for our wedding, except they were free, so I grabbed them!

Found signs

To top it off, when I got home my wedding dress arrived! It's perfect - just like the picture and fits great. I'll just take the waist in a little before the wedding so that it shows off my figure more. I wasn't sure about shoes until I got it (ballet flats? heels? retro?) and these will be perfect with the tea length of the gown:

Later we explored some of City Creek Canyon, which is just about a mile away from us - the road is only open to cars certain days of the year, so it's mostly cyclists and walkers. We took the trail that runs parallel to the road 3 miles up and then walked back on the road - with the ups and downs of the trail it was almost 7 miles round trip. Not difficult, but beautiful scenery, with what foliage Utah has to offer and snow in the distant mountains.


City Creek Canyon

We got home and I was able to watch the Red Sox game that I had recorded. I was also cat sitting Oink this weekend, who continues to be objectively adorable.

Oink at the faucet

And yesterday I went for a 5 mile run in the morning - beautifully chilly weather for running - and then we went to a bar we hadn't tried yet to watch football. We found a nice section of the bar, where they put the Patriots on one tv, the Packers on the other, and some Saints fans were watching the third. My first Bloody Mary in SLC (and they free pour - pretty rare here!) and a 9.00 buffet for me to eat ALL THE PROTEIN after my run. Came home to take a nap and relax some more.

Now. Back to work!
brdgt: (Cardio)
I have finally gotten somewhat used to the altitude here (read: my lungs don't burn when I exercise) and have actually been really happy with the home workout I've been doing - I'm seeing better results with everything (except upper body strength) than I ever did with gym classes.

My workouts are here, but basically I've been increasing repetitions of these three workouts.

Read more... )

I am now up to 4 repetitions of the leg workout, 3 of the ab workout, and 35 pushups. It takes about an hour, but doesn't require any special equipment (heck, I even usually do it barefoot), but it works up a good sweat and I'm loving how my ass and stomach are looking.

I'm also going to start training for another half marathon and this one looks like an awesome goal - both location and timing wise:

It's a steady uphill, but only a 466 ft total gain (or comparison, in my four mile run yesterday I gained 391 ft at over 1,000 ft higher elevation than Zion). I'm sure by the end of training I will agree that "downhill courses are for wimps," as they state:

Monona 20K

May. 5th, 2013 02:55 pm
brdgt: (Cardio)
Finished the Monana 20K in 2:07:40 with a 10:17 pace (my goal was 10:30!). If there hadn't of been some pretty gnarly hills around miles 7-10 I may have even made a 10:00 pace, but I'm still very happy. The last four miles were in a drizzle too. Now I can say I have walked across Lake Mendota and run around Lake Monona!



[livejournal.com profile] purplemb13 and I, enjoying a beer after the race - its Wisconsin after all!
brdgt: (Cardio)
Running: Week three of the half-marathon training finished with a 6 mile run on Sunday. The program is going much smoother this time around, even with the extra day of running and attempts at pace setting. I find myself halfway through my long run before I think to look at the clock.

Climbing: Well, my climbing partner and I started the "Climb a Mile" in February challenge just for fun, openly saying "there is no way we will finish this, but let's see how far we can get for fun," and gosh darn it - we're both going to finish! Dianna will be done tonight because she had a stronger start than me, but I'll be done on Wednesday! We went from an average of 7 climbs a night, two nights a week to 28 climbs a night, three times a week! We are looking forward to incorporating more laps into our climbs, but also to adding in new routes - this challenge does not incentivize trying anything new or very hard, it's more about stamina.

Strength-Training: I am really happy with the benefits I am seeing by just doing this class once a week. It's has increased my core strength exponentially more than yoga ever did - greatly helping in climbing, as well as yoga. Most of all - squats and lunges? They make your ass look amazing!

Yoga: I need to get back to Kristin's low key but intense class for the spiritual well being (stupidly stayed out too late partying on Friday night and missed the class I wanted to go to with [livejournal.com profile] purplemb13), but the strength training class has definitely helped in the power yoga class I like to do Monday and Friday morning - those crazy push-ups and sit-ups don't seem so bad anymore. Actually, I should probably try head stands again...

Diet: I've plateaued a little again at 145, but with less variance on a day-to-day basis, so I'm very happy with that. I'm back in my skinny jeans and things just fit better. Mostly though, I'm seeing a real effect on my running by adjusting my diet to my training. That was one element I didn't incorporate last time, but by being more careful about the carbs, protein, and fat that I eat, I definitely have more energy on my runs and I am more efficiently building more muscle (I was surprised last year that I didn't seem to build more muscle, but now I see I wasn't eating what my body needed to do that). It's also helped me save money because you really have to plan out your week, especially breakfast and snack wise, if you want to have good fuel and muscle building options available.

One thing that has definitely returned from training last year - the need for more sleep than I am used to - I have to start adjusting for that because it makes getting up for 6AM yoga hard when I used to be able to go to bed at 11 and still get up for that.
brdgt: (Cardio)
This past weekend was a busy one. The CHE Graduate Student Symposium that I co-coordinated was all day Saturday.


We had a great turnout (over 40 people over the course of the day). This photo was of the brave souls that made it all the way to the end of the day.

2013 CHE Grad Student Symposium

I was very pleased with the variety we had (there was even a poster session) and quite a few History of Science faculty attended in the morning.

In other news I have decided to run the Monona 20K this year. It's just a hair under a half-marathon, so I'm going to try the intermediate half-marathon training schedule that Hal Higdon offers. Basically, instead of optional run Wednesdays, they are pace days (try to run that distance at the pace you want to run the race). I ran the Madison Half-Marathon at the 11:30/mile pace, so I want to at least up that to an 11:00/mile pace, but if that starts to go well in training I will shoot for 10:30 or 10:00/mile.

Training Day 1

I am also doing a challenge at my climbing gym this month: Climb a Mile. It's a lot harder challenge than it sounds. It equals out to doing 220 routes in 28 days. My partner and I have increased how many days a week we go to 3 times and increased the amount of routes we do each time from 7 to over 20. On the one hand it has really increased our stamina and technique, but disincentivizes trying new routes because you have to finish a route for it to count. In order to get a lot of routes done in one trip we usually do a warm up route 4 times, level up a route 3 times, level up to our peak route and do two of those 2 times each, then level back down the way we came up and add on at the end if we still have energy. Since we are doing routes more than once we try to change our technique each time, which has been interesting.

And, best of all, we are on pace to actually accomplish it! There is a party and raffle at the end, but really, it's about changing up our routine and trying something new for us.

And finally! I finally broke down and got a tablet. Every time I thought about getting it I said, "oh, my netbook isn't that bad," and then last week it didn't even have enough available memory to run java. Since I waited this long I was able to get the Google Nexus 7 with 4G, so I can use it even when there isn't WiFi. So far I really, really like it. The difference in memory and power is exponential. I held off getting a blue tooth keyboard until I used it a little, but I do need to get that for taking notes with it. If I had the Nexus 10, the larger screen would make the on-screen keyboard workable, but I would prefer smaller size for most of it's uses and have an optional keyboard for the times I need that.
brdgt: (Cardio)
Back in May [livejournal.com profile] purplemb13, our friend Brian, and I ran the Monona 5K

Group Monona 5k

Best 5K finish so far for me

Monona 5k

Some more Union South rock climbing

Union South Rock Climbing
brdgt: (Default)
I ran the Madison Half Marathon yesterday with a time of 2:30:22! Due to the heat, the full marathon was cancelled and our friend Mike ran with me. He was great companionship and although it was hard, we had a blast - I'll definitely do it again!

Right around Halfway I asked Nick to meet me halfway with a second water bottle. There were plenty of water stations, but I had trained with these and they were cold :)
Right around Halfway
Willy St. This was about the point that I started to feel some pain (in my knees and feet).
Willy St.
Machinery Row Our old frisbee friend Mike was going to run the full marathon but it was cancelled due to the heat - he ran with me instead and was great company. We stuck right with the 2:30 pacesetter and chatted most of the way.
Machinery Row
John Nolen Drive This was the beginning of the hardest part - no shade, last 5K, hot, and cranky.
John Nolen Drive

Our friends Stacey and Adam met me at Machinery Row with this great sign! The crowds in general were great and it was wonderful to have friends cheer me on :)
Mile 10! From here on out was uncharted territory for me - my longest previous run had been 10 miles!
Mile 10!
Olin Park Did I mention no breeze?
Olin Park
Mile 11.5 Starting to get cranky.
Mile 11.5
Firehose! I spent half a mile staring at that firehose, waiting to run under it - it was the best feeling in my entire life.
Last Hill The last half mile was uphill - Mike was surprised to see I kept my word (I actually enjoy uphills) and not only made it up without walking, but sped up our pace and passed a lot of people.
Last Hill
Finish! Given how many people were at the start line, we actually started 7 minutes after the first runner, so the time is a little misleading.
2:30:22! I am very impressed my posture here! I didn't walk once, kept pretty much a 11:20 pace, but sped up to 8:50 for the final half mile (UPHILL).
Finishers! That chocolate milk was the best chocolate milk I ever tasted. 78 degrees at the finish line, btw.
Finisher! I have to admit - it was hard, but *so* much fun!

Local News Story: 

And Local News Official Pictures: http://host.madison.com/wsj/sports/running/photos-madison-half-marathon/collection_0d6d3dee-a828-11e1-95ff-001a4bcf887a.html
brdgt: (zombies by iconomicon)
Yesterday I...

Had a great run, ending the last mile with...

Made this for dinner...

and watched this (zombie attacks shark, conquistador zombies, and the slowest eyeball skewering ever. Brilliant!)

Nick is back home for his grandmother's open heart surgery - which went well!

Week four

Feb. 29th, 2012 09:17 am
brdgt: (Default)
And in other news, the half marathon training is coming along:

My times are still lower than I would like, but I haven't had any trouble completing any of the training days.


Feb. 7th, 2012 09:16 am
brdgt: (Ambitious by foggi)
Who would have thought, back in 2008, when I started to do Couch-to-5K with [livejournal.com profile] antarcticlust that I would be considering a half marathon? OK, maybe you guys did, but I didn't.

Much like my climbing and yoga practice, I've realized what it's like to plateau and that if you want more out of it you have to put more in. Going climbing two times a week has done wonders for my skills - last night (and [livejournal.com profile] alexeye, you'll get this) I had one of those moments where I'd done a route almost a dozen times and always thought one part seemed harder than it should be and last night put my foot in a counter-intuitive position and was like "OH! It's so *easy* now!"

So, I'm doing this program, which comes highly recommended and looks very manageable, especially because I can already run 10K. My goal will be the Madison (half) Marathon, which, according to the website is 110 days away! I'm not going to worry too much about the cross and strength training, considering I do climbing and yoga both twice a week. I've even convinced Nick to do CrazyLegs with me the month before (it's only 8K and ends with beer - SO Wisconsin).
brdgt: (Windy Road by iconomicon)
After a month of sicknesses (Shingles, Norovirus) and research trips (DC, Chicago) I got back to the gym this week (ran 5K Friday and Saturday). I also got to yoga twice (gym yoga and my favorite Saturday class) and started meditating.

I practiced meditation in high school when I was experimenting with all kinds of religions and one of my goals for this year is to be more aware and mindful and present, so I sent out a Facebook inquiry for suggestions around town. One of Nick's friends just happened to have gotten back from a semester long stay at a spiritual retreat, where she cooked for the nuns, practiced yoga and meditation every day, and had her own one room cabin. She had already planned to start a weekly yoga/meditation/potluck and moved in one block away from us! So I spent Friday night doing a half hour of yoga nidra, half an hour of meditation, and a few hours of good food and pleasant company (and cute dog for the win!).

I've always found that yoga helps me clarify thoughts that have been swirling around in my head, so this week has been super grounding and peaceful with all this mindfulness. Right now I'm focusing on the tension between contentment and yearning as well as (and not unrelated) the desire for knowledge. It's ridiculous, but we all need to be reminded of our blessings and all the things we have in our lives, from the moment we wake up (our partner next to us, a warm home around us, animals eager to see us) throughout our day (working to our fullest potential on our work, relationships, and personal goals) until we go to sleep (our accomplishments for the day, our hobbies, what made us laugh). I want to strive to honor all these things that make my life content and only yearn for things that add to that contentment and to focus on knowing what can be known well, instead of stressing over what I don't and/or can't know.


brdgt: (Default)

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