The adventures of an unlikely pair. Follow us if you dare....

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The One with 10 Secrets!

So my sweet cousin Taylor, who blogs over at Tea with Mrs. Kee is doing this cool challenge and I decided that I wanted to join in too! I'm hoping this will help with some of the blogging rut I'm experiencing!

10 Secrets:
1. I have always wanted to be an olympic athlete. When I did gymnastics as a kid I just knew I would go to the olympics someday!
2. Growing up I thought that all dogs were boys and that all cats were girls....don't ask!
3. I listen to Christmas music all year long. I have more christmas cd's than another others
4. I can easily get hurt by friends, especially if I think I've done something to hurt them.
5. I look up to my sisters and want to be just like them (even though they are both younger). I miss them so much and hate that they live so far away!
6. I have 4 calendars, they all say the same thing. It's purely for pleasure.
7. I can't wait to be a mother, to be pregnant and hold some little being that I made. I'm terrified I won't be able to get pregnant.
8. I taught martial arts for 5 years (Tang Soo Do, to be exact). I was one test away from being a black belt, but I tell people I'm a black belt anyways.
9. I think my life will be complete if I can someday run the Boston Marathon.
10. Good calf muscles on the opposite sex are the biggest turn on for me physically, just saying....

The one with 10 days

So it has been 10 days since my last workout! TEN! That’s all the fingers on my hands! TEN! That is ridiculous! I’m sure you can tell by my daily mile post, or lack thereof that I’ve been a slacker. Oh yeah, and the fact that my blog has been growing cobwebs might also be an indicator that I’m a lazy bum and haven’t been doing too much.
Well, for the record, although I am a lazy bum in the workout department, it’s not because I haven’t been doing things. I’ve been distracted, a lot! It’s in a good way, but definitely distracted. I’ve been preparing for my new job and still doing things that can’t be neglected on my old job, which takes a lot of my time and attention. I’ve been asked to be a leader for my adult bible class at church, and so I’ve added responsibilities there, and with that have come many more new friendships and people to spend time with. I’ve also been taking advantage of Ranger’s games, since the season is almost over. And I’ve spent some family time. All in all many fun things, but clearly distracting me from my workouts.
When it’s all said and done, it will be 12 whole days before I workout again…that’s right, I’m not working out until Saturday! I do miss my running buddies…I miss the consistency we had and I’m ready to get back on a strict running schedule again. So with that being said, I’m using spare time to make my new running schedule that will start on Monday.  
This schedule is going to be a BIG one! It will actually take me from September 1st all the way thru all of my marathon training! I have so many races coming up and also want to make sure I properly train for this marathon and give my body plenty of time to increase mileage. So I will have 6 months of training. 6 months!! Holy moly that’s a really long time! As overwhelming as that seems, I am a bit excited to see how my winter will look. You all know that I love plans and schedules and even though 6 months seems daunting I know that it is just a plan.
Essentially though it makes the marathon a real thing for me; and I never thought I would say this but I’m excited to run a marathon, EXCITED! Am I crazy, absolutely! But you can’t have fun if you aren’t just a little bit crazy! So we are just going to plunge forward and I’m completely determined to enjoy the ride, bad days and all!
Another thing I’ll be doing in my spare time (since I’ve had so much accumulate over the past couple of weeks, ha!) is to get my eating back on track. Since my workouts have been a disaster, my eating has been a disaster as well. And by disaster, I mean a full out train wreck! So that is definitely going to be whipped back into shape real quick! I’ve also been researching different supplements and health food options to make sure that I am completely healthy and fit while training. I’ve been introduced to JuicePlus and I even got to go to a really interesting talk last weekend by Dr. William Sears on healthy living and aging. I will start my JuicePlus regimen this weekend and I will keep you posted as I go along.
So, there you have it; I’m not dead, just out of sorts lately. I’ll find my motivation somewhere soon, don’t worry. I’ve got lots more running to do and I’m ready to take it on!
P.S. I signed up for my first ever marathon relay today!

Monday, August 22, 2011

The One with Bullet Points

Yes, I am well aware of the fact that I've become a blog slacker! And I'm going to repent real soon, I promise. Things have been busy in these parts for me so I'm just going to give you a bullet point style post to catch you up:
  • August 14th I ran The Hottest Half. It was a very interesting experience and I'm glad I did it (I say that now!) I finished with a time of 3:09 (10 minutes off my worst half time). I feel that given the day and the heat, I am very proud of that time. The race started great and we did well. Mile 9, things went downhill and my body stopped responding well but I stuck with it and finished strong.

  • It took my body a REALLY long time to recover from the hottest half. After my first half marathon I was sore for about a day, but it wasn't unbearable. After my second half marathon I wasn't sore at all. After the Hottest Half I took an ice bath with 3 bags of ice for 20 minutes. I also went and played volleyball with friends later that night which helped to break up some of the lactic acid that was building up. But Monday night the soreness and fatigue really hit me!
  • Tuesday night I went to run with Lisa and Lucy. They wanted to do 5 miles, by body said no way! I probably ran about 3 of the 5 that they did.
  • All week long my whole right leg has been having issues. It's mainly been IT band tightness and the tendonitis in my shins. It has not been a fun week and I really need to take care of this pain before it gets worse.
  • Thursday night I went with a friend to play tennis, I did not play myself but instead decided to run. We were in my old neighborhood that I grew up in and so I run by my old house and the park I spent many hours playing at. I only went 2.5 miles because I was still having those leg issues.
  • On Saturday I met up with my church's running team and we did our scheduled 5 miles. It was an overall really good run. I was still in a little bit of pain, but I ran with my dad and stepmom and they really kept me going. Unlike on Tuesday night I was not cursing every step and thinking that I was going to burn my running shoes. We finished in 1:04 and I felt really good. My body was tired so I skipped body pump class and went to a movie with Nanna instead.
  • Last night I did a 3 mile run on the treadmill. It was an awesome run and I kicked butt! 3.1 miles in 32 minutes. I was super proud of that. I would have gone longer but it was already 11 o'clock and I NEEDED sleep!
Hopefully that gets you caught up in what's been going on in my world. This week will hopefully be better when it comes to blogging, but I can't promise. I'm starting a new job soon (not new place, just a new role) which I'm really excited about, so that means I'll be finishing up responsibilites in my old role and training for the new one....busy, busy!
I hope you all have a wonderful Monday!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The One Where I'm Certain

Tonight I did my first ever brick workout – I did an hour-long spin class and then immediately (really like 7 minutes) later I went and ran 2 miles. I know what you are thinking: Don’t I have a half marathon on Sunday in this record setting heat? And you decide 3 days before that that you want to accomplish your first brick workout ever? Hey I never said I was smart!

Let me tell you, if you ever wondered why it is called a brick workout I can say with absolute certainty that I know EXACTLY why it is call a Brick Workout.

I started at the gym with a spin class. I did allow myself to push some and increased and decreased the intensity the same as everyone else, however, I knew I was going to be running afterwards so I made sure I only pushed myself to about 80% max and not 100% (see I can be somewhat smart!). The instructor was not great, so I felt I was able to really work at my own pace and I felt great when I was done. I am fairly certain though that my right quad hates me!!!

Class was over and I quickly laced up my shoes, drank some water and threw my stuff in the car and off I went. I knew from the start I was only doing 2 miles, so I knew I was going to push myself somewhat to maintain under a 12 min/mile pace.

The first 20 steps felt amazing and I instantly told myself I love this. Step 21 and I wanted to die!!! My legs felt like complete trash. It was the weirdest feeling I have ever experienced in training. It wasn’t bad, just very different. Aside from my legs being completely trashed I felt good all through mile 1, I was also going downhill most of the way (another smart moment in my life – unfortunately I had no choice in this matter).

I hit the 1 mile mark at 11:08 pace – awesome! I knew mile 2 would be much slower, but I was ok with that, I was going uphill after all and this was my first brick. Plus let’s face it, I’m horrible at having negative splits, like I think it’s only happened twice ever in my life (note to self – work on negative splits!).  At the 1.4 mile mark I was on a HUGE incline and so I walked for 1 minute and then stretched my calves for 30 seconds, then I was off again. I felt strong after that little stretch break and even though I was tired and my legs were dying I just talked myself thru the last half mile.

I finished mile 2 in 11:50 for an overall average of 11:48! Score!!! I am fairly certain that during this workout I died and went to a parallel universe, which resembles Hell! I am also fairly certain that I have a newfound respect for all triathletes, complete respect for sure!!! And I’m also fairly certain that I absolutely loved that workout and I will be doing it again, like next week.

I don’t know about anyone else but it’s invigorating to find new ways to push yourself and make yourself stronger. Our bodies are amazing and they can accomplish amazing things. I’m always amazed when I think that a year ago I would have killed over just running a mile. And today I’m fit and having fun.

Have you pushed yourself to do something new in your workouts lately? I want to know!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The One about Weight

Some days (weeks) I just seriously feel like “Fat Monica”.

Ok, whatever you say. It’s like no matter what you do, how you eat, what you wear or how much you work out the feeling just doesn’t go away.

This week has been one of those weeks for me. And it is so frustrating!!! I think the most frustrating part about it however is that I actually feel really strong and healthy and have been proud of how hard I’ve been working out.

How is it that I can workout constantly (in a healthy way of course) and then go to put on my pants for work and they don’t fit? Talk about annoying!

I really am truly confused. I’ve been told maybe I’m overdoing it. But then I read other people’s blogs on how they log 10+ hours of workouts a week and I’m only averaging about 5-6 hours.

I’ve also been told that maybe I’m not eating enough to compensate for the work I’m doing. That kind of seems counterproductive to me. If I’m not eating enough, why would my pants be too tight?

I honestly don’t think food is my problem. Ok, well food might be a slight problem, but not eating ENOUGH is not the problem. I’ve planned out my daily meals for breakfast and lunch and I’m getting about 1000 calories from those two alone. And although I don’t eat that much in the evenings I know I am getting plenty.

I do think that I need more protein in my diet. But as far as the meal plans for the mornings and lunch I have tried to maintain a healthy balance and have checked and rechecked to make sure that I’m not eating junk.

I’ve also been told that maybe the weight gain (aka tight pants) is a result of muscle gain. I suppose this could be true, but I’m not entirely sold on this. Maybe it’s that I don’t want to admit that my muscles are getting bigger and therefore just shoving my fat out further…. I do know that my body has changed and clothes fit me differently, but they still used to fit.

Yes, it’s true, some people’s clothes don’t fit.
I really have no answer for this problem, but honestly it’s really getting to me. I’m trying to just let my mind dwell on the fact that I “feel” good about myself and not think about the fact that my once cute and comfy clothing is now too tight. I keep reminding myself that changes take time and my body is changing and evolving and if I keep doing the right things I will eventually see results in all areas. The problem though is that about 5 months ago I was a size smaller than I had been this time last year, and it felt great. Now I’m back to my old size, but working out harder. I truly do not understand.

Honestly, running has never been about weight for me (seriously!).  I actually only ever weigh myself once a year at my annual doctor appointment, other than that I have no idea what I actually weight, it’s true!

I really never weight myself. I’ve always based myself upon my size. For years I was a size 12 and completely uncomfortable there. A year ago I was at a size 8 and I felt really good. Today I’m somewhere between that 10 and 12, and again I’m unhappy. The smallest I’ve ever been is a 4-6. That was my freshman year of college and looking at pictures I’m too small. I was never unhealthy, but I don’t like the way I look. I would be happy to be between that 6 and 8, if only I could get there. (*side note, I’ve almost deleted this paragraph about my size about 3 times, but I decided I want to be an honest person and have a healthy body image, so sharing my size goes right along with that)

So to sum it all up, I really have no idea what’s going on with my body. I know I have been doing a lot of strength training, and I’ve been skimping on the running lately because it’s been so hot. I’m interested to see what my body does when I get back to running on a consistent basis, maybe that’s what my body responds the best too.

We all wonder that Rachel.
Thanks for letting me vent and share. Does this ever happen to any of you? Have you ever had this experience of working out and not seeing results?

The one with a couple of awesome giveaways!

Tricia is offering an awesome giveaway today that I would love for myself!!!
Tricia at Endurance isn't only physical

And Cely has a great giveaway as well with the book Run Less, Run Faster, also a giveway I would love to win
Run Less, Run Faster

Go check out both these blogs, enter the giveway and let them know I sent you!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The one about World Vision (finally!)

I apologize this has taken me so long to write – life has been a bit hectic lately. Hopefully by now you have had a chance to click on the link I’ve posted and visited my World Vision training page. A couple of months ago I was made aware that my church had a running team and that once a year they run a local race to raise money for the water project in Uganda. My church has a 3 year commitment with World Vision and Uganda to aid in bringing clean water to the people of Uganda, and we are on our second year of that commitment.  My church has made several trips to Uganda to do work and serve the people there, yet it’s not always a feasible way to serve seeing as the travel costs are all your own. So in comes the running team with an opportunity to still serve the people of Uganda right from your own home.
I was really excited when I learned that my church had a running team – I absolutely love running with other people and I feel it’s a great way for me to be able to get to know others in the church and make new friends. I am blessed to be able to attend a very large church and I have only been there for about a year, so I see this as a perfect opportunity to dive deeper into my church home. I will also add that by joining the running team I have been led to a new leadership position among my peers that I am finding to be a blessing.
When I joined The Height’s Running team I was signing up to not only be a part of running and training, but also I was making a commitment to raise funds that will go directly to the water project that our church is supporting. I have agreed to raise $655, all of which will go directly to Uganda. I will be raising these funds while training for 13.1 Dallas, which is on October 22. This means we have 12 weeks to train and raise money.
On Saturday morning we had our first group run and I was a little nervous but I also knew that I had several friends (and family) already recruited for this great cause! I have asked my Dad and stepmom, Denise to run this half marathon with me and do the training. I was honored that they were so willing. Denise even sends me several emails a week updating me on their training progress, I love it!!
But now I need your help blog world! I have made my commitment to run and train and raise money for this cause, but I cannot do this alone. I will of course update you on all of my training progress (I’ll be training for 5 other races at this time, so you will definitely be hearing about training). I will not follow the schedule that they gave us completely, mainly because I have so many other runs in the mix, but I will stick to it as best as possible and do all long runs with the team that I can. But what I need for you do to is this: if you are blessed with the ability to make a donation, I ask that you please consider doing that. I understand that financial support may not be in everyone’s means, and that is completely ok, I still need your encouragement and prayers.
I’m blessed that running is something I enjoy, and so the sacrifice on my end may not seem like a lot. However, I have been so blessed through the ability to run that I cannot imagine passing up this opportunity to serve someone else. I know I’m training for countless other races, and this one falls smack dab in the middle, but my goal is to train with a purpose. Any time I feel frustrated or like I want to give up, all I have to do is remember why I’m running. I’m running so that someone can have clean water to drink. I’m running because someone else can’t. I’m running because I can make a difference. Please help me make that difference! I’m working on adding a link to the side of my blog, but I’m technologically challenged as we all know and can’t seem to figure it out…. If anyone can help with that please let me know! Otherwise until then, I will just keep reminding you! Also, if you feel the urging please feel free to copy the link (The Unlikely Runner's World Vision page) to your blog and tell your blog followers about the awesome work being done in Uganda by World Vision.
Thanks for your help in achieving my efforts and remember to run with a purpose!

Monday, August 8, 2011

The one with the weekly update for July 31-Aug 6

Week 2

Sun. 7/31

Ran 4 miles
Mon. 8/1
Gym: elliptical intervals 50 min and weights 30 min

Elliptical intervals 50 min
Tue. 8/2

Wed. 8/3
Gym: treadmill Speedwork
Weights for 30 min

Thur. 8/4

Fri. 8/5
Gym: elliptical 45 min

Moved to Saturday
Sat. 8/6
Run 4 miles The Heights World Vision Team
Body pump at 24Hour 9:30

Ran 4 miles (49 min)
Elliptical 45 minutes intervals
Body Pump 60 minutes

Friday, August 5, 2011

The one for me.

I’ve debated whether or not I would actually write this post or not, and that even if I did, would I actually push the ‘publish’ button. I’ve stopped and started and written and re-written it all in my head countless times. How honest do I be? How vague? Do people care? Or is this just for me? What to say when you have a year’s worth to share, a year that was so full you can’t believe it’s only been ONE year. I feel as if the things I’ve done and learned in this one little year have equaled the events of a lifetime. But in fact, it’s only been one year. Someday I will look back and say, that was 10 years ago, but today, today is the day that a year ago my life would never be the same.
It’s a sad story, yes. But in many more ways than that it’s joyful and overwhelmingly sweet. I can’t believe the word sweet made its way on the page, but that’s what came to mind and that’s what I will say. I’m choosing to be vague in detail, yet fluent in emotions. One year ago I was heading down a certain path, and path I thought I wanted. A path I made on my own; Mistake of monumental proportion. That path was ripped out from underneath me in the strangest (scariest?) way one could imagine. If I had chosen not to be vague, you might not have truly believed the whole story, it’s true. My loving family came to my rescue, and at that time I was not fully aware of how much I needed to be rescued. The week that followed the up-ending of my path was horrible and yet so eye-opening to the beauty of my sweet sisters and all-loving family. That week alone set in motion what has now become this past year.
This year was about choices for me; it was a choice to survive or sink. I chose to survive. I chose to be different. It was painful, oh my goodness, yes! I’ve cried, a lot. I’ve grown, a lot. And I’ve gained a lot. One year ago I did not have a job. One year ago I did not have more than half of the friends I have now. One year ago I had a family I didn’t respect the way I should have. One year ago I didn’t have running. One year ago, I was lost.
Today, well today is different. Today, I have confidence that I absolutely did the right thing. Today, I have confidence that my sisters saved my life. Today, I have confidence that my family is amazing. And today, I have confidence in myself.  I owe all the glory to God. He wrapped His PROTECTIVE arms around me and shielded me from a path of destruction. He did not shield me from pain, but I believe He allowed me that pain so that I would know the difference; the difference between one year ago, and today.
In this year, I’ve seen both my sisters graduate from college. I’ve seen my cousin get married. I’ve watched my sweet grandmother go home to Jesus. I’ve seen God give me a job that I am proud of. I’ve seen my group of friends grow in insurmountable ways. I’ve seen God provide me with a Church to call home. I have watched myself run 5 miles for the first time in my life. I’ve watched myself run my first 10K, my first 15K, my first and second half marathons. I’ve watched myself become happy and content. But mostly, I’ve just watched God’s love be at work.
I have grown. I have stretched. I have lost. I have gained. I have hurt. I have learned. But more importantly, I’ve become me. I know who I am and I know who I’m supposed to be. I may not know exactly where I’m going, but I know how to get there. It’s an odd thing to see your life through a panoramic view, it really is. And I know my panoramic view may mean nothing to you, but to me that view gives me comfort. It reminds me where I’ve been. It reminds me where I could have been and shows me the beauty of where I am now.  Back in March, as my Dad and I drove to my grandmother’s funeral in Lufkin, we spent some time talking about what I had been through, at that point over the past 8 months, when the small phrase escaped my lips; it’s a phrase we both have carried with us since then that provides meaning in the turmoil and it was simply this: if I had not been there, I could not be here. And that’s how I’ve chosen to live my life – with no regrets, only lessons to share. Of course I wish things had been different, what normal person would not; but that, that was not the path I had chosen. But I know now what path I will choose.
I think that’s why running has become so significant in my life; it’s a path for me to follow, a healthy path.  It’s a path of redemption (although I know I have an even better one in my Holy Father). For me it’s direction. It’s a sense of control. But more importantly, it provides healing.  It heals my soul, my heart and my life. I find fulfillment in accomplishments I can call my own. I find peace in the goals I have achieved. I find contentment in the friendships I have made. And I find myself empowered at who I have become because of running.
I may be an unlikely runner, but that's only because I'm letting God write for me an unlikely story, one that only He knows and one that will be so beautiful to share.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The one with a desired nap

I had every intention of writting a post today about World Vision, I honestly want to tell you all about this exciting opportunity that I have. But unfortunately my "adult" life and job came calling. It's been a busy couple of days in these parts, mainly because we recieved good news at work that we are all keeping our jobs (it's a long story, but a good thing). However, that means lots of changes and added work. But I cannot complain!! That is until about 3 o'clock today when the urge for this

came along. Thank goodness it's Thursday because the urge is hitting really hard! And since I've given up these
it really makes life super hard here on the job front. But in other news, just some random updates here...
Last night I did some speed work on the treadmill at the gym (which was PACKED at 9pm, and dreadfully hot because of that!). I started with a 10 minute, 1 mile warmup. Then I sprinted for a tenth of a mile on level 8, then walked for 2 tenths. Then I ran at 5.5 for a tenth, then sprinted on 8 for a tenth. Then I walked again for 2 tenths. I did the whole cycle 3 times. Over all it was 2 miles in 23 minutes followed with a 6 minute (.25 mile) walk afterwards. Then a 15 minute bike cooldown. Wow I was sweaty and tired!!!

Another note of randomness, here are the ONLY two pictures I took this weekend with my best friends in San Antonio (one of which is yes, a picture in the bathroom!). I still can't believe I didn't take more than 2 pictures, it makes me want to cry!
Andrea and I

Andrea, Darcey and I
We've known each other our whole lives and basically been best friends for just as long. I'm so blessed to have these two girls as friends. I've always known we have a special friendship but I was reminded of how amazing they truly are this weekend. I love you guys!
Alright, enough randomness....Ke$ha concert tonight....yes, really. (It was a Groupon, and Lisa wanted to go, I must return the friend favors for the rest of my life)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

the one that is very short

All I have time for today is this:
and this:
World Vision
Please, if you have a moment visit this website and I will have a post about this tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The one that just happened

Thank you! Your registration is complete.
You will receive an email confirmation of your registration shortly.
Order ID:
Event: 2012 SunTrust Rock 'n' Roll USA Marathon & CareFirst Rock 'n' Roll USA Half Marathon - Marathon
Participant: Lauren
This may have just happened.... Ok actually, this is proof that it did! I made up my mind, I'm doing a FULL marathon, and so before I could realize my stupidity I signed up for it. That's right, the credit card has been charged! (There is a 48 hour $20 discount that goes until this evening for anyone else interested...)
A few sidenotes: I had wanted to do a full on my 26th birthday (I know, the insanity I put myself through!) but as it turns out there wasn't one being offered on my birthday, at least not anywhere close or fun. (I'm not really digging Jersey...) So I settled for the next best thing in my mind - a birthday trip/run around our nations capital! I LOVE, did I say LOVE Washington D.C. and have always wanted to go back. I'm a huge geek for all things history and think our nation's history is facinating. So instead of torturing myself on my birthday, I will just give myself an early present and make it a monumental occasion (pun intended!).
I realize I may be crazy; I mean I had already said that I'm running a full marathon in September of 2012, so why do this one too? I guess there are several reasons I've chosen to do this...
1) I would like to train through the winter and log the miles while the weather is cool. I've barely run this summer and I think training for my FIRST marathon in this heat next summer would be a big mistake and leave me feeling defeated. I will still do Hawaii, for sure, but having one marathon already accomplished will give me some confidence to train for the next one.
2) It's a Rock 'N Roll series marathon, enough said, ok or not... running a RNR series means you have entertainment along every mile and I'm thinking this will be a big help when I'm ready to die and forget all my hopes and dreams and what I've worked so hard for.
3) This may be the most important, but I convinced Lisa to run this with me. She swore up and down she would only run 1 marathon ever and it would be in Hawaii. Well she's either really easy to convince, she's a sucker for torture not only from running but also from me or she's a really awesome friend. Or just all of the above.
I'm not sure if the realization of what I've just done has set in yet or if I really and truly am excited for this experience, but I am. I can't help but be excited. Maybe I'm in denial, who knows. But I do know this, the self-confidence and inner strength that has been bred through running is amazing and I'm excited to see where this takes me.
Training starts December 1st, which means I still have time to freak out, but I can't change my mind! And if anyone wants to join us in D.C. and cheer us on, well hop on board!

Monday, August 1, 2011

the one with the weekly update for July 24-30th

Week 1

Sun. 7/24

Mon. 7/25
Gym: elliptical for 45 min

Elliptical 50 minutes

Tue. 7/26

Wed. 7/27
Gym: elliptical for 45 min
Weights for 30 min

Elliptical 30 minutes circuit workout 25 minutes
Thur. 7/28
Gym: run Speedwork on treadmill
Yoga: 60 min

Speedwork and the improvised workout
Fri. 7/29

Sat. 7/30
Run 4 miles

Moved to Sunday