Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My favorite ‘long hair’ running hairdo + HIIT workout

I’ve never had really long hair. The length of my hair right now is probably close to the longest I’ve EVER had it. I don’t have much patience for growing my hair out & by the time it is semi-long I give up & chop it. I’ve stuck it out for a while now, although I do need a good trim soon. So anyway, my hair is long [for me] and it drives me crazy when I run.

Running hairdo options for longer hair -

  • a regular ponytail. Not horrible, except the aftermath. It is a tangle mess of knots & rat nests!
  • a messy bun. This is a typical, daily hairdo for me, easy & comfortable. But running with it is a different story. A big messy bun can’t withstand the pounding of running & ends up getting lose (even with multiple hair ties) & makes for quite the headache by the end of the run.
  • a low ponytail. I’m not a fan. The hair is more contained than a high ponytail, but it’s still roaming free, making it’s way to tangleville.
  • a french braid (or two). Auhhh. Talk about relief. No tangles, no mess, no flipping & flying in my face, no headaches.

And just to prove how awesome the french braid hairdo is when running, this is a picture of me after a 9 mile run…


You can’t even tell that I just went running. Seriously, the perfect hairdo!! But then again, it’s only perfect if you can braid your own hair or have someone that will do it for you. Luckily I’m skilled in the art of ‘self-hair-braiding’ Winking smile. Here’s a shot of the braid in action (my last half marathon)…


On to the HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout:

I needed some motivation to get my speed workout in the other day and this is how I did it:


I did a tabata workout (20:10 –> 20 seconds of work, 10 seconds of rest) and mixed in a 1/2 mile sprint each round. This totaled 4 miles of speed work at 1/2 mile intervals. Felt great! Afterwards I decided I probably should have used weights instead of just body weight, but I was planning to run more afterwards (another 4 miles) so I didn’t want to completely drain myself.

It’s a pretty fun workout. Try it out! Do more or less rounds (I did 8), more or less work time (I did 20 seconds), or throw in some weights!!

oh, and HAPPY EARTH DAY today!

Monday, April 14, 2014

V is for Vegetables

We are on V week in preschool with my little G and kicked it off with V is for Veggies. My boys are pretty good at eating vegetables, the particularly like bell peppers, carrots & peas. It makes me pretty happy that they do eat them, I swear when I was a kid I never ate veggies Confused smile

We started it off with a big letter V that he put veggie stickers on. I found some clipart on Google images and he didn’t know the beets, egg plants & radishes (I do not eat any of those!).


Then used the same stickers as with the capital V page, along with some fruit stickers, and we deciphered between fruits & veggies and put them in their separate bowls. It’s kinda hard explaining the difference between fruits and vegetables in 4 year old terms, so I stuck with fruit takes like a treat and veggies need ranch Winking smile. IMG_0621

Little G is an awesome color-er. He is working on staying inside the lines & does an impressively good job. I helped him name the veggies & he told me what color it needed to be colored. IMG_0625

Then we did some taste testing. He has eaten all of the vegetables we tested, but it was fun for him to decide it it tasted good Smile or not good Sad smile. He also wrote out the names of each vegetable, great practice with his letters. (find this spreadsheet here).


It’s always a goal of mine to teach my kids more about a healthy lifestyle. Other preschool activities we’ve done in relation to ‘healthy living’ –> F is for Fruit, N is for Nutrition & O is for Oatmeal.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The double stroller workout season has officially begun

Now that the snow is gone (crossing my fingers that it’s for good), it’s time to dust off the double stroller and get outside with my boys for my workouts. I started this week off with a 5 mile run outside pushing them. I’m still doing the HR training, trying to keep my heart rate at about 75% of my max…kinda hard to do when you are pushing 60+ lbs, in the wind and up short hills. I was going REALLY slow!!

[view from the stroller!]

Another day this week I took them on my first [outdoor] bike ride of 2014. Again, pulling that much weight up hills, and in the darn wind makes for some really great training (aka it was hard!). They loved it and didn’t fight too much Winking smile


Many more workouts and outings will be had with the double stroller/bike trailer this summer. That means my treadmill reading time will be cut very short & I now need to download audio books!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

1st week of April – workouts & HR training stuff

I hardly post my workouts anymore. Well, I hardly post anymore period. We’ve been busy here and life does not slow down. I just wanted to post my workouts this past week because it a good week. Not that I did a ton, but it felt quality. I don’t always lift or cross train, so anytime I do it feels great!

  • Monday – 7 miles (easy pace)
  • Tuesday – nothing
  • Wednesday – 9 miles (easy pace)
  • Thursday – workout #1, 4 miles (easy pace)
  • Friday – 30 min walk/run with friend, workout #2
  • Saturday – 11 miles (easy pace)

Workout #1

    • 10 squats (w/ weight)
    • 15 push-ups
    • 70 sec plank
    • 15 deadlifts (w/ weight)
    • 20 full sit-ups
      • 4 rounds

Workout #2

    • 7 burpees
    • 40 side-to-side heel touch crunches
    • 8 single arm thrusters, right (w/ weight)
    • 8 single arm thrusters, left (w/ weight)
    • 30 reverse crunches
    • 12 bicep curls (w/ weight)
    • 80 sec plank
      • 4 rounds

For my running this week it was all at an easy pace. I’m doing a short heart rate monitor training session (this week and next) before I start training for my next half marathon in May. I’ve been keeping my heart rate between 130-150 bpm (around 75% of my max heart rate), which is a pace close to 9 minute miles. It’s been nice to just run and not get very tired. My two long runs this week (9 on Wednesday & 11 on Saturday) were easy and I loved every minute of it.

I have been keeping track of my heart rate with this HR monitor I just got. I’m not into the huge Garmin watches, especially for hundreds of dollars, so instead I went with the simple, but just what I needed, Timex HR monitor. It was closeout at REI (here is one similar) and does the job just fine. I want to track my heart rate, and that’s what it does (along with other basic watch functions – timer, interval timer, stopwatch, etc).


One of these days I’ll do a full MAF training program (or what I call Heart Rate training), which is a 16 week training program keeping your pace SLOW, every run is an easy pace, no speed work or pushing your heart rate too high. I’m intrigued by how it can help your body use fat for fuel more, rather than just relying on glycogen. I’m very interested in getting to a faster “easy” pace. Very intrigued!

Have you ever done a MAF training program or any kind of heart rate training?

Thursday, April 3, 2014

New {Month} Resolution

Never mind this New Year Resolution stuff. I’ve gotten over the hype of having to set those on January 1st. Instead, this year I’m setting monthly goals. Goals that will help me improve myself a little at a time and not feel so overwhelmed with the New Years Resolutions.

No, I didn’t set the goal to set monthly goals as a New Years resolution. It just so happened that each month this year I’ve set a new goal for myself (sometimes without even realizing it!). They are all about making me into a better person and help me continue to progress & grow, in many different ways (physically, emotionally, spiritually, mentally, etc).

January I started reading more books, well, more like I started reading books period. I hadn’t read any books for a few years and figured it was time to get that part of my brain going again. Most of my reading was done while running on the treadmill, and now that the weather is finally getting nicer, I fear my reading will be dwindling again.

In February I didn’t consciously set a goal, but overall I was focused on family. My family, in particular, my boys & my man. But also visiting family - we had a “reunion” with my man’s side and I hung out with mom & step-dad for a couple days. It wasn’t as fulfilling as the other goals I set and accomplished, because I wanted more from it (a reunion on my side of the fam!).

Last month, March, I was working on developing the gift of love. This was a pretty personal one, just because I’m trying to improve my inner self – learning to love others, no matter who they are or what they’re like. It’s hard for me, really hard. I hate admitting that, but just consider the fact that I’m not a fan of hugging people (even friends) as one indication of how hard it is for me to show love. Yeesh. This goal is ON GOING, as in lifetime, but I’ll get there someday!

This month, April, my month resolution is to not eat chips. At least for 3 weeks. I am so addicted to chips, particularly tortilla type chips (potato chips are definitely not a favorite of mine). At one point in my life I could go through a regular size bag of chips in 2 days…by myself. It was horrible. I’m not that bad these days, but still. I really want to break this 20+ year addiction/habit and get over the need for chips. I actually started this goal on March 30th. So far I’m 5 days chip-free Winking smile.

No pictures for this post. That’s weird for me, but it’s not a picture post. It’s just me and my goals.

What goals/resolutions are you working on right now?

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