If only

If only I could:
– find the right planner
– buy the perfect work bag
– discover the skincare that would stop my face from aging
– get people to stop calling me ‘lady’
– become someone I’ve never been

then, it would all be okay. Those are the stories I tell myself when the entire world is google search away and I can insert my shorter-than-average self into every instagram ad and envision how I would be. Alas, it’s all brilliant lazy marketing campaigns, punching me right in my most vulnerable spot.

I took today off work – I wanted another day to reflect and enjoy and truthfully, I wanted to come back to a shorter week. I enjoyed it: I laughed, I exercised, I went out to dinner, I got drunk on a single margarita and it was fabulous.

Despite the days I took off, and the time I spent reflecting and the miles I thought about running and the ways I envisioned the new year ushering in a whole new me and us and reality, it turns out that time passed and I’m still me and you’re probably still you.

As I said before, I don’t really believe in resolutions. But I believe that today, tomorrow, and maybe some other times, I can try to make better decisions. I can practice the keyboard and work on passion project — because the time is going to pass whether I do or not. I can stop asking you about the weather, or the news or how your stupid meeting was. I can ask you about the last book you read, the last thing that made you laugh, the idea that makes your heart sing.

I’ve had just enough liquid courage to post this, so I’m going to.

Happy New Year, to the same old, new and improved us. Love you, but for real.

Goodbye 2017

It’s the last day of 2017, and maybe it should feel more special, but it kind of doesn’t. Besides the global, political, and cultural that everyone else with a soul endured, this year was just another year. Today does, however, mark the end of calendar-year-firsts since my mom died, so I guess that’s something.

I don’t really have any resolutions, but I’ve done some reflecting and some looking forward, I have some thoughts and ideas and I’m feeling cautiously optimistic, at least. I’m not good at typing out all my thoughts like many of my favorite bloggers do and have done. It’s something I would like to get better at, but I’m not there yet.

But I’m still here and hope to keep sharing.

And I just put on my sparkly party dress to spend the night at home, so bring it on, 2018!

Weekly Wrap 06

The last 2 weeks have slipped away without a wrap-up post from me. But I haven’t had that much to wrap about either.

I’ve been trying to run at 3 days a week, but I haven’t kept up with the 80/20 schedule much at all. I am doing most of my runs at an easy pace. I really think I should add in at least one day of less easy running, but it feels hard to fit in.

Since around April I’ve been doing Crossfit type workouts with my coworkers twice a week and I started off loving them. But lately, I feel like they just might be wearing me out. I do think I’m stronger, which is nice, but I haven’t seen much of a change in my body (more muscle, less fat, etc) and it definitely takes a toll on my running. I enjoy the camaraderie of working out with my coworkers, and I actually don’t mind the actual classes, but I’m not sure how to keep doing them and run as much as I want/need for my own personal mental happiness. I feel like I have been kicking around this problem for quite a few weeks now and just can’t find an answer that satisfies me.

Since Thanksgiving is coming up, I decided to take this whole week off crossfit and see how I feel next week and if that helps me make a decision.

All that said, last Saturday, I set out for 8 miles, but the weather was pretty nice (low 60s) and felt pretty good and decided to just keep going and ending up making it 12 miles. That’s the longest run I’ve been on in about a year. And this past Sunday I did 8 miles at about a 40 seconds less per mile than usual (probably because of the weather, but I’ll still take it).

So maybe it’s not so bad and it’s all in my head. Maybe it’s just the change of seasons getting to me. I’m looking forward to a few days off work, lots of good food, and more naps than usual, and hopefully I’ll head into December feeling recharged!

I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin. I can’t wait to find a few minutes this week and get inspired by everyones autumn races and Turkey Trots

Weekly Wrap 05

Wow, five weeks of wrapups, at least I’m more consistent in my blogging than I am in my training! ;P

Last week started off great. Monday was my usual rest day, and I really wanted and enjoyed it after last Sunday’s bleh run.

But on Tuesday, the weather was fabulous and I started the day off 3.5 miles with my husband. I forgot my HRM (seems to happen a lot when I plan to head to work after – I think because there are so many other things I have to remember/get ready), so we just ran at an easy pace. Whether it’s 80/20 working or just the cooler weather, the run was a little faster paced than usual but felt effortless.

At Fusion class, we were finishing up a good workout with some box jump/pull ups/tire flip combos, and on one of the box jumps, I kinda, well, missed the box. I scraped my shins up pretty decently, and while I tried to finish out the workout (we only had about 8 min left), my shins were swelling up so I walked back to the office to ice them. It definitely smarted at the time, but I feel lucky that it didn’t hurt that much.

The whole incident was just one of those weird things where I was distracted by looking around and thought “what if I didn’t make a jump, that would suck” and then, in my weird brain state, jumped and didn’t make it. Totally mental and a good reminder to stay present.

My lovely coworker ended up driving me home and I spent rest of the evening on the couch doing the whole RICE thing, and definitely not mixing ibuprofen with wine. 😉

I decided to rest on Wednesday, because my shins were still tender, and not because I was hungover.

I felt like I could have run on Thursday, but my husband gave me a little side eye and I had Fusion class in the afternoon, where there was different kinds of box-jumping on the board, and I’m happy to say that while I jumped again. I shall not be intimidated by inanimate objects nor my own dumb mind!

On Friday, I felt good and was actually excited to run again. Pace was good for the zones I ran, and I was pretty happy.

Usually my long run day is on Sunday, but my husband had been having some calf pain, so he had already declared himself out on Sunday. So we woke up and went for coffee and the weather was, once again, AMAZING – actually cooler than it has been in probably 8 months at least – so I decided to go for a long run by myself around our usual short run place, a neighborhood .5 mile park trail. After 16 trips around, I declared myself a winner and headed home, where my non-running husband had homemade vegetable beef stew waiting for me. I really am a winner!

So, that’s my wrap for the week. As usual, I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin.

Weekly Wrap 04

I knew going in it was going to be a low-mileage week because we had our offsite quarterly meeting for work.

On Monday, I forgot my HR so I just ran 3.5 easy miles with my husband. The weather was cool and it was fabulous. We also had work class of Fusion/Crossfit since we knew we would be out on Thursday.

On Tuesday, I remembered my HRM and did 1mi Z2, 1mi Z3, 1mi Z2. And our usual Fusion/Crossfit class. I was tired at the end of the day and so I cancelled my reserved spot for Wednesday’s 6am weightlifting. Oh, and our little espresso-machine lid died 🙁

On Wednesday we slept in, and then walked down to get coffee. I sort of meant to go for a run, but it just didn’t fall into place. I was pretty stressed about our work overnight (for no good reason, I’m just like that).

Thursday – meeeeeetings most of the day. But we did play kickball, so you know, a few sprints around the bases. 😀 And yes, I did edit the following image to just show my arm muscles – haha!

Friday – hungover, more meetings, no real activity. We got back to Austin around 5:30 and I had takeout with my husband.

On Saturday, we had some errands to run, but as soon as we left the house I started feeling blah. I told my husband I was tired and feeling puny while standing in HomeGoods, which is a pretty strong indication of how tired and puny I was feeling. So we went home and I napped while he ran.

Sunday I was still feeling a little run down. Only 6.5 miles were on the schedule, but I ended up doing run/walk intervals for 5 miles and called it a day.

The arm picture above notwithstanding, some of the pictures taken at our event made me feel super :\ about the way I look, so this week I’m going to try to stick to the schedule, get back to tracking my food, eat more protein, drink more water, all the usual blah blah blah. I do typically end up feeling motivated to start dieting in November for some reason, so I guess it’s just that season for me.

I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin.

Weekly Wrap 03

It was first week of trying to follow the 80/20 Level 1 Half Marathon Plan. Being that I am basically incapable of following any plan, I did about as well as expected. But I did more running than I’ve done in a while and am feeling really good about it, so that counts as a win.

Monday – Rest Day! No run, no class!

Tuesday – Fast Finish Run. I really enjoyed this one. 5 min in Z1, 25 in Z2, and then finish with 10 in Z3.

Wednesday – made it to 6AM Strength class, then did 25 min easy – which wasn’t ~exactly what was on the schedule, but I left my HRM monitor at home, so I just winged it. I felt pretty tired after my run, but I ate some oatmeal with peanut butter and raisins which seemed to help a bit. By lunch I felt pretty much normal and that continued throughout the day – woo! Maybe my husband is right and I just need to eat more. That has just never happened to me before – heh!

Thursday – no run day, so I got to sleep in. Crossfit was pretty cardio-focused, but there were plenty of pull-ups and pushups too for some fun shoulder burn.

Friday – easy recovery run. I need to work on staying in Z1. I feel like I can barely jog without going above zone. I’ll keep working at it.

Saturday – no official workout. I got in a ton of steps running errands and going for a long walk in the evening.

Sunday – long run day! I programmed the scheduled run of 5 min in Z1, 7.5 miles in Z2 and .5 miles in Z1 into my phone and I had the new albums Going Grey by The Front Bottoms and You Can’t Stay Here by Iron Chic queued up. It was humid and overcast, but the sun eventually cleared away some of the clouds and gave way to some GORGEOUS views. The first few miles were a little rough – I had some burning/discomfort in my feet and I think it is because it is time for new shoes. But eventually it settled down and I settled in and felt good. Again, I wasn’t able to keep up any sort of even slow jog and stay in Z1 – so I did some walking and some jogging and called it good enough. Then, I was feeling so good I did another 2 miles in Z2. What can I say, I’m totally a rule-follower, but not a plan follower.

After upping my food intake on Wednesday and being more mindful of my protein intake throughout the week, I didn’t experience any more fatigue, which I am totally excited about! I was worried and annoyed, but now I feel like I’m in a good place to move forward. I’m going to pay attention to the 80/20 HM schedule, but I’m also going to look at some other schedules and make my own rules so that I can get to running the number of miles I want while trying to keep up the principles of the 80/20 plan.

I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin.

Weekly Wrap 02

Happy Monday, another week has come and gone already.  It was a busy, exhausting week over here.

On Tuesday, Crossfit kicked my hamstrings!  We did front squats, followed by weighted lunges, followed by a run … oof!

I woke up sore on Wednesday.  The kind of sore where even laying in bed doesn’t feel so good.  It was hot and very humid, but I made it out to the track/trail.  I did 3 miles, with the first 2 miles being primarily 30/90 second sprints and recovers and the last mile nice and slow.

On Thursday we ~finally~ close on our former house. Because of the timing, I missed crossfit and was not even sad.  After driving way across town to sign some paperwork, we came home, took a nap, and went out to a fancy dinner at Uchiko.

Here’s a few of things I poorly captured from our night out – they were delicious!

rice bow
onigiri • scallion • pickled lotus root • ajitsuke tamago
sashimi
japanese yellowtail • ponzu • thai chili • orange supreme

jasmine cream
jasmine cream • cilantro granita • pineapple honey


On Friday morning, I was destined for a meeting in San Antonio with a coworker.  I planned to get up early and run, but I was still tired and sore, so I didn’t.  Whomp whomp.  But I did talk with my coworker who does crossfit with me (it’s a work sponsored thing) and he said that everyone was sore and grouchy and had actually talked to our coach.  Apparently Tuesdays and Thursdays are leg-focused days, but our coach said he could modify for us, since we are not the typical class (let’s be real, we’re all 30+ [or in some cases, 30++] year olds with desk jobs and we call ourselves the fat-kids class).  So I’m hoping a shakeup reinvigorates me.

Saturday, I napped.  Twice.  But we did a lot of walking around the neighborhood.

On Sunday, I struggled on my long run.  Even keeping my heart rate low, I just didn’t want to keep running.  I mentioned on my instagram how it went, but I ended up running 6.2 total miles and walking 5 additional miles. I ended stronger than I started, so I’m calling it a win.

With all the stress of the last few months (buying/selling/moving/changes at work/etc) that I’m just a little run down.  But I woke up this morning feeling reinvigorated and ready to jump back in.

I’ve been going over the 80/20 training plans and have decided to really commit myself to half marathon training.  I picked a date of 12/25 as a ‘race date’ and though I won’t really race on that day, it should be a good day for me to go for a nice long run and see if I can’t set a personal PR or you know, just have fun.  (I love running on holidays)

I’ll be jumping in on week 4 of the plan, but I’m doing the Level 1 plan and have a pretty solid base (this week notwithstanding), so for tomorrow I’ve got my Fast Finish 4 run programmed into my phone, we’re expecting an overnight cool front and I’m ready to enjoy this fall season!

 

I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin.

Weekly WrapUp 01

I’m excited to participate in my first (for this blog anyways) Weekly Wrap.  I actually wrote things down as they happened this week, so let’s jump right in.

Monday: Rest day!  I know lots of people #nevermissamonday, but I actually like starting off the week kind of low key and lazy.

Tuesday:  Crossfit class was pretty brutal.  It never seems that bad to read the board, but ….  reality.   The first part of class seemed okay – I can’t even remember what we did.  Then, we used a heavy kettlebell and were to do 3 descending rounds (20, 15, 10) of goblet squats, kettlebell swings and lawnmower rows.  If you pick a weight that is challenging for the first 2, that last exercise is ROUGH).  We ended the class with 2 rounds of 400 meter row sprints and everyone was just laid out by the end.

Wednesday:  I set my alarm and finally made it to the 6am Strength class with my Tues/Thurday trainer.  I really enjoyed the strength focus, though new people are always stressful for me.  But I paired up with someone at about my level it seemed okay.  We did deadlifts, push jerks (which were new to me) and push press with some core work and stretching thrown in.

Thursday:  I was getting up from a situp and twisted my knee strangely and it felt painful and super weird – like a rubber band was stretched wrongly inside there.  It stopped me in my tracked and I think I made a spectacle of myself.  But once I was able to straighten out my leg, the pain went away completely and I was able to complete the rest of the workout without any issue.  Later that evening, though, it felt somewhat sore and stiff.

I took it easy and Friday and Saturday, and by Sunday it felt pretty much fine and I was able to run 7.5 lovely miles before it started to twinge.  I would have liked to have made it 10, since the weather was so nice and I was feeling so good, but I figured ‘better safe than sorry.’

I’m linking up with the Weekly Wrap, sponsored by Holly from HoHo Runs and Tricia from MissSippiPiddlin.

Bullet Journaling at work

At home, I have, use, and love my Inkwell Press planner (currently using my 2017 coiled weekly) and it is gorgeous and a joy to use for all of the personal things I want to do and track throughout the week.   But I’ve never brought it to work, in part because it’s heavy and in part because work is messier than home and I didn’t want to clutter it up with a bunch of task that don’t hold the same emotional gravitas for me as remembering that I went to a lovely lunch with my husband or that I need to go shopping for my niece’s birthday.

I may yet buy a Daily planner from Inkwell Press, but since we’re on a spending freeze, I thought I’d try something I have been looking at for a while now – Bullet Journaling.  I’m only on my third week, but so far it has been a nice way to keep track of things. I’ve started each week with a slightly different layout, and one I thing I do love is that I can customize it each week based on how it worked for me the last. And if I run out of room or want to get some ideas out of my brain, I can just flip the page.

As much as I love online tools, (and trust me, I have plenty of todo and note apps on my phone and computer and ipad) nothing beats paper and pencil for me when it comes to actually removing items from my brain and helping me make forward progress.

How do you track your tasks at work?  Do you have more than one planner or notebook?  Or do you find that an online solution works best for you?

 

 

Welcoming myself back to running

I have half-heartedly tried the 80/20 plan a few times in the past year, but never stuck with it past a few runs.  But I’m trying again, and am well into the second week.  One of Dashing in Style‘s recent posts about adjusting her running as she get older really hit home, and it was one of those things that changed my perspective on running and aging and that it all really is okay.

I have always said that I want to continue running as I get older.  But I’ve also realized that isn’t going to happen if I put so much pressure on myself that I dread getting out the door – which is exactly what was happening.   I struggle to run in the heat and humidity, but I live in Texas, so for better or worse, that is going to be something I deal with the majority of every year.  Making peace with slower runs that don’t leave me so sore and tired is going to be key in keeping going.

In addition to keeping my heart rate lower as I run, I’m starting an actual spreadsheet to track my mileage and the weather on the days I run, just so I can track if the heat and humidity really has much of an impact on my running as I think.  And also to have something to measure against next year in the heat, and hopefully prevent myself from feeling so discouraged.

And with this new blog and domain, I hope to get back to documenting it all: my running and everything else more regularly.