Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday favorites

Favorite regular weekly meal:
Taco night.  It's hard to over-state how much Brian loves tacos.  I'm not sure why it took me so long to institute a weekly taco night (on Tuesdays obviously) because he would always get so excited when we were having them.  And I love having one night a week where I don't have to think about what I'm going to make :)

Favorite thing I saw outside our house:
Deer...and a lot of them!  I see deer regularly on my runs because the trails go through woods, but I don't normally see them outside our house and I looked out one morning and saw 12 of them.  12!

Favorite thing I (finally) figured out:
The adjustable band on toddler pants.  Once I got it, it made sense....but I was doing it wrong for awhile.  I don't think it's that intuitive and I think some form of instruction card should be considered, at least for first-time buyers.

Favorite treat:
Girl Scout cookies.  I have a special love for GS cookies and it has literally been years since I've had any.  My friend's daughter is a Girl Scout and I was able to order them from her and my friend was kind enough to send them to me!

(Least) favorite forecast:
Sunday's forecast for the Little Rock half marathon has been holding steady with a chance of rain  between 70-90% all week.  Needless to say, I am packing accordingly.  **edited to add that the forecast now specifiies 'PM rain' and it's gone down to 60%...things are looking up**

Favorite new way to shop for things we buy over and over:
Amazon subscriptions.  I've always ordered a lot of things on Amazon, then I took it to a new level when we had the boys by ordering things I used to get at the store: dog food, toilet paper, wipes, detergent, etc.  Now I've taken it to a new level again by setting up subscriptions on Amazon for things we shop for regularly.   And you get a lot of big boxes, which provides a good amount of entertainment for little ones.

Favorite way to save money:
Ebates.  If you do a lot of online shopping like me (see the piece about Amazon above), you have to get set up with this.  You get cash back from shopping online, it's incredibly easy, and just about every major retailer is linked up.  This is how simple it is: set up an account, download a little button on your browser bar, look for a banner with how much cash back you get anytime you visit a website, activate that by clicking the button on your browser bar, and continue shopping.  Then every few months you will get a check or money deposited into your Paypal account with everything you've earned.  I signed up in the beginning of January and we've already earned over $80.  Cha-ching!

What is your favorite Girl Scout cookie?  

Do you order a lot online or shop for it yourself?  

Do you have any regular dinner nights?

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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Bayshore marathon: week 3

This just about sums up last week for me as a result of some ice and snow we got early in the week (although it was nothing compared to the whole Northeast)...
Not exaggerating :)
I got reacquainted with spending quality time on the treadmill.  I'm thankful we have one and for the flexibility it offers me, but running on the treadmill also makes me very thankful for having been able to find ways to run outside as much as I do between Brian's schedule and the boys.

Monday: off

Mondays are my regular off days and having off this past Monday worked out well because it allowed me to give my knee some extra rest without disrupting my schedule.

Yes, that's Jesse doing his business in the yard....caught on camera
Tuesday: 4 easy miles at 9:23 on the treadmill; core and hip exercises

I tend to err on the more cautious side when I feel a niggle (doing the 16 miler was an exception to that) and I adjusted my training for this week accordingly.  I normally have a sitter on Tuesday mornings so I can run outside, but the roads and trails weren't clear yet so I got up early to run on the treadmill before the boys woke up.  This worked well anyway because I wanted to keep things low and slow and just get a short easy run.  And my knee felt great!

Wednesday: weights (all over), core and hip exercises

It was still icy outside and I figured my knee could benefit from the extra rest, so I swapped the run I had planned on with Friday's workout.

Thursday:  8 miles easy on the treadmill at a 9:16 average pace, core and hip exercises

By Wednesday afternoon, I thought the trails would be clear enough to run on the next day and I had a sitter lined up for Thursday morning.  Then I ended up at the doctor's office with one of the boys later in the day Wednesday and had to cancel the sitter so we didn't spread germs.  Back to the treadmill it was.

Friday: 8 with 7 miles @ 8:05-8:15 (8:02, 8:10, 8:04, 8:05, 8:23, 8:22, 8:14)

I intended to do 6 miles in the 8:05-8:15 range, but forgot to ease up for the last mile.  I wanted to run at my goal pace for Little Rock next weekend and was really looking forward to it.  Unfortunately it felt harder than I wanted it to and it ended up being a little discouraging.  However there were several factors that could've contributed to it: I over-dressed and was uncomfortable, there were patches of ice and I had to start and stop a few times, the book I'm listening too is a little on the boring side to run to, my stomach was a little off (apparently I need to continually relearn the lesson of not to having eggs before a run).....and maybe it just wasn't my day.  The route has rolling hills and I was  happy with my splits considering how I felt.

Saturday: 10 miles easy @ 9:05 average pace

This run was a great run :)  It was raining when I started and the forecast predicted rain for the whole run, but wet miles trump treadmill miles in my book.  The weather cleared up half-way through my run and it turned out to be really nice by the end of it.

Sunday: 8 miles with 1-4 easy (8:57 average pace) and 5-8 @ 8:05-8:10 (8:02, 8:22, 8:03, 8:16); core and hip exercises

I ran the first 4 miles easy without paying attention to my pace and wanted to pick it up for the last 4.  The course is hilly and it was windy outside and the splits are reflective of that.  I felt good, I felt like I settled in and I got what I wanted to from this run: it gave me confidence that I might be able to maintain an 8:05-8:10 pace for next weekend.

Overall I'm really happy with this week.  I reduced the intensity of my runs, but still managed to get some miles at my goal pace for next weekend and my knee didn't bother me at all.  My goal for next weekend is to (hopefully) PR and cross between 1:46 and 1:48.

Total miles = 38
Core and hip exercises = 4 days
Weights = 1 day

Who else has been on the treadmill all week?  I feel as though almost everyone I know has been!

Which wins in your book: running in the rain or running on the treadmill?

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday favorites

Favorite run:
Well I haven't run outside since last Sunday, but the treadmill has been kind to me.  I managed 8 miles yesterday, which is the longest I've gone on the treadmill in awhile....and the boys waited till the end of my run to poke their little heads up in their cribs :)

Favorite splurge:
My MIL gave me a gift card to Sephora back in the fall and I caved and got a Clarisonic.  I had looked at them for so long, but always wondered if they were really worth the money.  Since I had a gift card and they offer a 90 day money back guarantee, I figured the time was right....and I love it.  The 90 days has come and gone and I still use it regularly and I definitely notice a difference in my skin.   If you're on the fence, I highly recommend it!

Favorite Valentine's Day treat:
The Valentine's Day gift that has gotten the most mileage in our house is a balloon I got Brian - it provides endless amusement for the boys.  However, I'm hoping that sometime soon I will finally learn to get two of anything that will ultimately go to the boys.

Favorite books for the boys:
This is not remotely related to running, but something to share with any other moms of young ones who might be reading.  My boys have a HARD time sitting still for books!  These lift-the-flap books by Karen Katz are awesome and are about the only books they'll sit still for.  We got Where is Baby's Belly Button as a gift and the boys love it so much that I've ordered several other books by the same author....and am ready to order a few more.  

Favorite piece of mail:
The Little Rock race book!  Just over a week till I see what I can do in the half :)

Favorite new thing I'm listening to on my runs:
Audiobooks.  I enjoyed listening to Serial so much that I've gone back to listening to audiobooks while running....except for speed work.  Right now I'm listening to The Ten Year Nap.  I am part of a moms club that includes a book club, but I had not paid attention to the book club since I haven't read a book since the boys were infants.  When looking for a new audiobook, I looked up what book the moms club was reading and saw that this month's book is about four women who leave careers to stay home with their kids and their lives go in a different direction than what they grew up expecting.

I can't say I'm particularly taken with the book yet, but it appealed to me because I left my job (as a school psychologist) to stay home with the boys and it is something that I can't help but think about.  I love being home with them and am thankful for the opportunity, I know I'll never get this time back with them.  But I also wonder when the right time to go back to work is, how hard will it be to transition back to work, will I be competitive, etc.   So not only does the topic of the book interest me, but I'm looking forward to the discussion of the book among other moms who have chosen to stay home and might have some of the same concerns.

Favorite things I made:
Naked Persian turkey burgers from the skinnytaste cookbook (very similar to this)....except we skipped the 'naked' part had them the traditional burger style

Minestrone soup with spring vegetable (from RW cookbook)

Salty chocolate chunk cookies - these are Brian's favorite :)

Favorite things I read:
36 invaluable pieces of relationship advice

20 signs you're doing better than you think you are

29 signs you're no longer a rookie parent....I'm getting there (see the note on the Valentine's Day balloon)

10 travel websites you need to know

A behind-the-scenes glimpse inside Nike's world headquarters - regardless of your where your brand allegiance is, this is cool

What are your current favorites?

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