7 THINGS

You know when you go on vacation and come back and are constantly wondering what day it is? Yeah. That’s definitely me today. It’s a Monday, but really kinda feels like a Wednesday? to me. One of the best things about this weekend was that the lake trail is now dry and snow-free! I got out there on Saturday morning and was so so happy. I’m planning on getting back out there today to get my last 20+ mile run until my 50 miler! I’ll simulate the race course by doing a 3-mile warmup (the course has us do a 3 mile loop and then 3 x 25k loops) and then 2 loops of the 10 mile lake trail. It’s supposed to be rainy until Friday, so I think mother nature is giving me a sign that today is my long run day ; )

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Brady was also in his usual spot last night - he loves to hide behind our fan while we go to sleep?!? Anyone elses cat do this?

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After I ran Saturday morning, we headed to the movies to see the new Avengers: End Game! It was SO good. Normally I have a really hard time watching a movie that is 3 hours long, but this one was done so well and it honestly felt like several movies in one.

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Also weekend chores including laundry. Just realized that Brady is basically the highlight of this past weekend. I guess I missed him on my trip ; )

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The weather was so beautiful this weekend, so we also took advantage and got a few things done outside including taking the cats out! There are too many coyotes, mountain lions, and foxes near our home so we choose to keep them indoors, but will take them out on leaches/ harnesses during the warmer months.

Maple says her harness complements her fur so well.

Maple says her harness complements her fur so well.

Cat bouquet!

I think this photo also gives nice scale to how giant Brady is compared to Maple. Ha. I  swear  they are brother/sister!

I think this photo also gives nice scale to how giant Brady is compared to Maple. Ha. I swear they are brother/sister!

And we went out for a hike out Mad Creek yesterday afternoon! The trails were crazy busy, but DRY so yay!

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-How was your weekend?!?

-Anyone else see the Avengers movie this weekend? Thoughts? No spoilers though!

-Are the trails dry where you are?

Training Tuesday: 10 Reasons Why I LOVE The Treadmill

Ok so probably if you’ve followed me on any of my social media platforms, you know that a fair share of my training has been done on the treadmill. Thank you Mother Nature! Between the ice, below 0* temperatures, and insane amount of snow we’ve gotten this winter- I don’t think I’d be able to get in half of my morning runs unless I had the treadmill to run on! I LOVE to run outside, but when I have no other viable and safe option —> I go to the good ole ‘mill. I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite reasons why I LOVE this as a training option!

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-It builds up your mental strength. There’s nothing like knowing that you can just hop off at any time, but you focus your brain to be able to withstand that temptation over time.

-You can really hit your paces. I know that if I want to hit ‘x’ pace during a mile repeat or marathon paced miles, I just put the treadmill at that speed and hang on.

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-It builds up your leg strength with those incline options! There’s nothing else better (in my opinion) to get in an absolutely killer hill workout that won’t quit. I also love these treadmill hill workouts from RunFarGirl.

-It’s a safe option when you don’t have someone else to run with or know where you are. I LOVE to explore new cities on my own two feet, but sometimes it’s not always the safest option (especially if I’m traveling solo). I know that I will be able to get my workout in and be safe —> the most important part!

-It’s a nice change of pace, when you’re tired of your usual running routes. Sometimes I get in a rut of running the same ‘ol roads/trails. The treadmill helps me switch it up and I get the feeling like I’m taking a “break”.

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-It saves you from running outside when the weather is just AWFUL. Snow? Sub-zero temperatures? Insane amounts of ice? Blizzard? Extreme heat? The treadmill is really a gift when the weather outside is not the best.

-It keeps your easy runs honest. While the time goes by slower, I like to utilize the treadmill to keep my easy runs truly easy. There’s no downhill segments to speed up your legs- I just pop it on a really slow pace and completely ‘zone out’ for those miles. Sometimes they’re my favorite runs of the week.

-Netflix and treadmill? It comes in waves of sheer-boredom with the ‘mill and gratitude, but I (most of the time) love to catch up on one of my new shows (that I save specifically to watch on the ‘mill) OR zone-out to a show that I’ve seen a thousand times. I also really love to watch the news on the treadmill. Total geek, yes I know. If it’s the Today Show —> even better!

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-Simulate your upcoming race course. I live in a super hilly area (i.e. I don’t believe I’ve ever gained less than 400’ on a run no matter how ‘flat’ the road looks), so when my legs are absolutely trashed from running hills or long the day before - I honestly do not want to look at a hill ever again and driving to a flatter road isn’t in the question —> the treadmill at .5% incline feels incredible. I also know that training for Mt.Washington Road Race, I’ll need to really work on a pretty steep incline (12%-22%) - there is no hill around here that spans out for miles at that incline so the treadmill the BEST option.

-There is no traffic to worry about. Sometimes I get really frustrated with cars on the road not paying attention to me or plow-trucks coming straight at me. The treadmill is a really nice change of pace where I can feel SAFE and really zone out without having to worry about Mountain Lions mauling me, getting run over by a distracted driver, or being plowed up by a snow plow. <— one of my biggest fears right there!

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Tell ME some of your favorite reasons why you love the ‘mill!


Weekend Recap

Happy Monday! I have been in such a funk lately and hoping it passes soon. I’ve been congested for over two weeks now and it’s really starting to wear on me. Nothing like not being able to breathe out of your nose when you’re trying to drink some water (OR RUN!!). Hoping it passes soon. We got something like 14” OF SNOW YESTERDAY?!? Yeah and I decided to go outside and run in it. It was so beautiful, but I didn’t wear my traction spikes and had a really hard time in a few spots where I kept slipping on ice/ unplowed dirt roads.  

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My legs were also so tired from our skin up the mountain by our house on Saturday.  

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We ended up going higher than we had before and making our own ski tracks on the way down (which was SO AMAZING!), but wow did my legs feel it on Sunday!  

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And yes, it basically snowed here all weekend.  

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Saturday I got so many of those “little things done” that I normally don’t get to- I.e cleaning the humidifier, my bras, cleaning our duvet, throwing out all those useless items under our bathroom sink etc. Since none of that is interesting, here’s a pretty cute photo of Brady asleep in a very odd position.  

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Also had steak & cheeses Friday night.... it was Sooo good!  

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How was your weekend?! 

Favorite dinner you had? 

Tips for uncongesting yourself?!?!  

Eugene Marathon/50 Miler Training Week 9: 2/18-2/24

Happy Hump Day! I’ve felt a bit of a cold coming on, so I’ve opted to get the majority of my runs this week in the afternoon (so I can get more sleep). I was still on the fence on whether to get my 8 miles at marathon pace in the morning (on the treadmill) or try to get it in this afternoon (it could be sleeting)- so still up in the air as of last night! I WILL be getting it in regardless though. I’m also getting my haircut today! I was still trying to decide if I should get some bangs (they looked so cute on me in High School, but are also a super pain-in-the-butt!), but I’m definitely excited to get some fresh highlights (it’s been since October!) and shorter hair again. Photos to come tomorrow ; )

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Last week really tested my patience with the weather. It was in the negatives every.single.morning and a high of low 20s the entire week. I had a crazy busy work/personal life week, so mornings were the only time I could run (for the most part), so I was on the treadmill a bunch (hoping to only be on it ONCE this week!). Not ideal- but do what you can right?

Monday, 2/18: 5 miles easy on the home treadmill while catching up on the news.

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Tuesday, 2/19: 1.5 mile warm up / 8 miles at goal marathon pace (8:15) / 1.5 mile cool down. 11 miles & strength. Felt really good even after getting kicked off the treadmill for 10 minutes. Gotta love the 6AM treadmill rush that lasts 10-15 minutes. Sigh.

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Wednesday, 2/20: 6.5 miles on the ‘mill. Normally I try to break up my goal marathon paced miles & speedwork, but this week was funky and this is when I had time. SO I did the repeats mainly on an incline (same benefits as a faster pace, but less strain on your body).

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Thursday, 2/21: 13 miles in the morning on the ‘mill & then had a unexpected free afternoon, so decided to just go for the remaining 7 miles to get 20 for the day! Happy to get some afternoon miles outside : ) Plus some strength afterwards.

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Friday, 2/22: 9.37 miles in a BLIZZARD in the morning (I didn’t think it was supposed to snow?!?). I took it slow because I was TIRED and it was icy (didn’t have my spikes). I ended up cutting it short in the morning and then got in the remaining 6.63 in the afternoon on the treadmill (still super icy out), which felt MUCH better. 16 miles for the day.

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Saturday, 2/23: REST DAY! Completely lounged and it was amazing.

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Sunday, 2/24: REST DAY! Went snowshoeing, did some strength, and a bunch of stretching.

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Total Mileage: 58.5 miles!

Total Elevation: 2, 122’ up

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Also LOVING this new shirt I got from Oiselle.

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THIS cream cheese (almond milk!) tastes amazing.

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It’s finally warm enough here to wear just ONE layer on top & bottom! YAY! Does this mean Spring is coming?!?

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How’s your week going?

What’s the weather where you are?

Favorite ways to pass the time on the ‘mill?

Training Tuesday: How My Past Has Prepared Me For My Future

Happy Tuesday! I’m so glad that Monday is behind us and also that it’s a recovery week for me. I have two hard ‘workouts’ on tap this week (tomorrow morning with 8 miles @ goal marathon pace & then Friday afternoon  with 3 x 1 mile @ 7:20-6:50ish pace) and then 3 easy runs and that is all! It’s refreshing to have these weeks, where I’m 100% focused on recovery (i.e. getting my hair cut tomorrow and a massage booked ; ) , along with ample sleep). I also really love to train hard because it helps push me beyond what I believe are my capabilities.

Maybe you already know this by now, but I love to reflect when I’m running (anyone else there like to do this?). I know so many that say ‘don’t look back or don’t compare’, which normally I AGREE with, however with International Women’s Day coming up on March 8th - it got me thinking how grateful I am to have so much in my life and to have the ability to train hard every day. My parents sacrificed so much for me to be able to participate in sports growing up. Not only was I introduced to the great outdoors, but I learned how hard work and determination can help you reach your goals. I learned that with team work, you can achieve more than you would have just on your own.

TBT to my second-ever ice show. Those Annie-costumes were amazing and that is still one of my favorite  songs . Also they put in pink. If only I had known how to pose in photos properly..

TBT to my second-ever ice show. Those Annie-costumes were amazing and that is still one of my favorite songs. Also they put in pink. If only I had known how to pose in photos properly..

Way before I began running, I was super into figure skating. A very individual sport. I would train at 5:30 in the morning before school, after school, and on the weekends. I would travel over an hour to get to my coach several times a week and often sacrifice social events to prioritize my training and schoolwork. I loved how skating made me feel-

When I was on the ice, I felt free to be creative.

Strong even when I was falling. Resilient even when I didn't get the placement I wanted.

Being able to engage myself in skating gave me the confidence to pursue so many other opportunities outside of the rink.

TBT to when I would get my hair done for ice shows and feel like a queen for a few hours. It was amazing. I wish I had a reason these days to get my hair done ‘just because’

TBT to when I would get my hair done for ice shows and feel like a queen for a few hours. It was amazing. I wish I had a reason these days to get my hair done ‘just because’

When I arrived to Syracuse (the first barrier that skating helped me break- I’m a first-generation college student!), I honestly had a hard time transitioning. It was a BIG school and I had lived a pretty sheltered life until then. I had never had friends who criticized their bodies or called themselves ‘fat’. I always appreciated my body for all that it did for me and never looked to food as somethings ‘bad’ for you. But WOW does college sure open your eyes to so many things! Unfortunately these thoughts started to hit me pretty hard and I no longer had skating in the same way that I had growing up. I still competed on the Synchronized Skating Team and trained when I could on my own, but once the negative seeds had been planted- there really was no turning back. I waviered through my college years; however my confidence was still pretty high (in some aspects). I guess that’s why I took on so many leadership roles and ended up taking something crazy like 18-20 credits per semester (WHO WAS I?!?). I also started to create those ‘bucketlist’ items - which is how I found myself running towards my first half marathon finish line.

LOVED these tights! I legit wore them for YEARS. I can’t find them anymore, but  these  are similar.

LOVED these tights! I legit wore them for YEARS. I can’t find them anymore, but these are similar.

At the time, I had no idea how much an impact running would later make on my life. It’s funny how something that seems ‘impossible’ provides the most satisfaction when you achieve it. Finishing this race really boosted my confidence and gave me the strength that I had lost for a few years - I began to seek down opportunities that really terrified me.

I began exploring the outdoors.

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I started hiking and camping by myself. When accomplishing these things, I felt strong. When others would question my plans or suggest that it wasn’t the best ‘idea’ to hike on my own- I was propelled to do it even more.

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I began to stop questioning myself and then I started running more. I ran my first marathon and the confidence that came with checking off that accomplishment was incredible. I became hungrier to explore the outdoors and see everything that I could by foot.

This was a BIG breakthrough moment for me. I had never had the confidence to just ‘wear a sports bra’ out in public. Running gave me the opportunity to view my body in a positive way. You can find similar bras  here . Also Mooney Falls is a  MUST SEE .

This was a BIG breakthrough moment for me. I had never had the confidence to just ‘wear a sports bra’ out in public. Running gave me the opportunity to view my body in a positive way. You can find similar bras here. Also Mooney Falls is a MUST SEE.

I try to imagine what my life would be like if I didn’t have the opportunity to participate in sports like skating or running. If I didn’t have the encouragement and barriers already broken by other strong women (thanks to my Mom, Grandmother, Michelle Obama, K.V. Switzer, Michelle Kwan to name a few!) in my life to pursue crazy goals - none of what I’ve accomplished would be possible. It’s incredible to imagine where I’ve come from, but I still believe that we have more to go.

I will never take for granted the opportunity to explore the outdoors by foot. Not everyone is as fortunate and for that, I am grateful. Another thing that I’m also grateful for? Backpacks that hold all your crap and look cute. I’m currently adding  these  to my wishlist.

I will never take for granted the opportunity to explore the outdoors by foot. Not everyone is as fortunate and for that, I am grateful. Another thing that I’m also grateful for? Backpacks that hold all your crap and look cute. I’m currently adding these to my wishlist.

I’m fired up and ready to tackle some really big (SCARY) goals this year in 2019.

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Tell me- what barriers has someone else broken down to help you become who you are today?

What barriers are you LOOKING to break down?

What has the ability to participate in sports given you?