Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Med-City Half Marathon Race Recap: A PR!

It was a PR. I will just say that first.

A huge PR for me. An unexpected PR and a lesson! As I was running into the final 100 meters I saw my Mom and yelled "I am winning by at least 12 min!!" Oh my...it's my brain on running. Let me start from the beginning! 

I was excited to pick up my packet from the expo, because Carrie Tollefson was speaking! She is an Olympic runner and native Minnesotan--a cross country kid! She told an amazing story about the day she learned about competition. 

Carrie told a story of when she, as a 7th grader made the varsity CC team. In her first race she came up behind her older sister, but then hung back just a few seconds, unsure if she should pass her. She could, but it was her older sister and here Carrie was, 12 years old in her first race. Her sister, knowing Carrie was behind her, told her in so many words to pass her or else. Carrie did and came in 3rd. She learned that competition was about her and her best, about pushing herself and not about who she was up against or even the circumstances. 

Run your race is what I heard her say over and over! 
YES. Run my race. 
I had toast with honey, banana and chia for breakfast...it's my most basic go to running/race morning meal! I feel full, fueled and I know it sets well with me. 

I also had about a half a Green Monster with Spinach and a BIG juicy orange!! 

It was cool to start out with, a few sprinkles at the start line, but that quickly just faded away to a bright, but gray early morning run. It was funny, I didn't really research the course of the race, and I often do so I know what to expect. Well. Standing at the start line I heard a woman say something about hills. She said the first 7 miles were hills. GULP. Did I train hills? Hm, not really...but I can handle hills! I eat hills like this for breakfast--no really, I had about 7 miles of hills for breakfast and it was HARD. 

This is the first hill of those 7 long miles and I am actually right in the cluster of people by the girl in green near the front! 

Deciding to PR

As I was standing at the start line, I knew I wanted to follow a Minnesota Pacer. I was standing between the 1:45:00 pacer and the 1:50:00 pacer, either was would be a PR for me, my best half time being 1:57: 03 at the Get in Gear last spring. I couldn't decide which group to go with, but settled on following the 1:45:00 knowing I could always drop back. 

Still I said to myself, "I will PR today. I will PR today." I had never done that. I had always believed for best race day conditions I could and rested in all I did to prepare, but I have never said I will PR no matter what. It was a great feeling, It was a leap for me because I wasn't going to let myself glide through this race (some races have moments or a mile or two of gliding). 

Mile 2: Wow, keeping up with this pacer is a breeze! 
Mile 4: Huh, I wonder how long I will have this side ache? (answer-till mile 9)
Mile 6: Left hip is grinding, right knee is hurting, legs can't lift to climb the hills anymore. I can still see the pacer.
Mile 7: Johnny Cash, downhill! Woot! Caught pacer again. If I stay with the pacer is it really MY race? 
Mile 9: Rounding a bend at the edge of Rochester and see Assisi Heights and the Mayo buildings, start to cry. 
Mile 9.1: crying and humidity don't mix, can't breathe, stop your crying girl and run!
Mile 11: On the heels of the pacer, I hope Mom is at the finish because I am ahead of schedule!
Mile 12.5: Pass the pacer and tell him I am about to PR by almost 12 minutes (can't do math)
See the finish, scream at my Mom that I am "Winning" and cross the line at 1:44:48, a PR by about 12:45 ( If I did the math right!) 

1:44:48! WOW! 

I grabbed all the food I could and found Mom, we were both so surprised!! What a PR! 

It was one of the fastest races I have EVER ran, at any distance and one of the hardest. I did have a side ache from about mile 2-9 and wondered in the middle if I was going to have to stop because of my hip. I pushed through and TOLD myself I would PR. Standing at the start line, I knew I wanted to PR more than anything and decided no matter what I was going to stay with that pacer and DO it.   

Could there have been circumstances where I wouldn't have met my goal, a circumstance that would have had me drop out, drop back and finish without the time I wanted? Sure, but it would have had to have been a BIG obstacle--this was MY race and I wanted to run it as best as I could, as hard as I could and not hold back. I didn't want to let some aches and pains stop me from my goal.

 It was worth it. To push through a tough, uncomfortable, hard race with hills and humidity, knowing that I was the only one who knew the PR goal in my head... As I was crossing that finish line, I couldn't believe that it happened and as soon as I crossed it, my mind went to: "Just how fast CAN I run a half marathon? Or even a marathon?" 

What race did you surprise yourself in and kick butt? Did you decide early on or in the middle that you were not backing down at any cost?  

 Congrats to Ann, Jay and Jen who apparently PR'd this weekend too! 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Arctic Zero & Race Day!

Do you get nervous before a race? Me, I just wonder what kind of weather I will be running in. Often in Minnesota, you don't know what you will get! 

I am planning on wearing a sweet little tank from Target ( clearance and it's in my bright jewel blue color palette!) and shorts. I will bring a jacket along and pray for sun and warmth, but I may get some gray and rain.  

All set and ready to go--yes, I am taking more than just this! :) 
I am excited to run another race, I haven't ran since my MDRA 7mile! And the Med City is special--I am running from my grade school home to the town I "grew up"(essentially!)

I Scream, you Scream.. 
Yes, you're reading that right: 150 calories per PINT! 
Arctic Zero, a high protein, low calorie, gluten free ice cream alternative! 
With 16 Grams of Whey Protein and 8 grams of fiber, this ice cream alternative is a very COOL way to enjoy a treat without outrageous fat and calories and still feel you are getting the real thing! 

Sweetened with cane sugar and monk fruit it's a fluffy treat that really does taste like cookies and cream! A few girls I follow on Facebook were talking about it--they are figure competitors and so I took note and hunted some Arctic Zero down for myself! Check them out at My Arctic Zero dot com! 

Thanks to Lori and Emily a couple local girls, for sharing on face book! I love this stuff... Ok, off for the weekend, a race recap coming on Monday! 

Have a wonderful SAFE memorial day weekend!  

Thursday, May 26, 2011

It's a SIGN: faith and endurance

Happy Thursday! 
Hope you are well, my day is SUNNY and happy over here in Minneapolis. I am running my third half marathon this weekend at the Med City marathon in Rochester Minnesota! I have my running outfit all ready to go, and I even have a sign all ready for my mom to hold while I run! 

A sign? YEP! 
A big sign that Build a sign dot com sent me for FREE!! 

I was able to upload my own picture, design the sign with whatever I wanted on it and even chose the material!! I chose just a corrugated plastic, not aluminum. The plastic sign is double sided as the aluminum, although more resilient was only single sided. 

It's is huge and very sturdy! Uploading and designing it was extremely easy and fun and it shipped to me in about 4 days. I couldn't believe how easy it was to get a detailed, truly custom sign! AND They sent me bumper stickers!! One set for Fit this, girl blog readers and one set for my Personal Training and Wellness Coaching business: Temple Training and Wellness! 

WOW, they are wonderful, I love them!! Get your own FREE Bumper sticker from them HERE! 

Do you want a Fit this, Girl bumper sticker? Send me your mailing address and I will send one out! Be Fit, have faith, have fun!! 

Have Faith: Twitter Chat
Speaking of having faith, I wanted to remind everyone that every other Wednesday I am hosting a Faith and Fitness Chat on twitter, just log on and follow the hashtag #FitFaithchat to talk about how our fitness and our faith intertwine, interact and affect our whole lives. 

For me, fitness is a way of life and faith is a way of life too, there aren't too many area's of my life where one or both don't exist or even dominate! I feel called to be fit and healthy so that I can step up and be the best I can be. God has a wonderful life planned out for me and I am called to be ready and able to follow that path, to walk that narrow road (or run it!), to be the woman I am in Christ--not lacking, not faltering and not fearing! 

No one said it would be easy. 

Is it easy to get up and go for a run when I am tired or it's raining? No! Is it easy to lift at the gym or do a boot camp when I am exhausted or have a mile long to do list? No. But I do it, because I love it, because it betters me, because I CAN

Is it easy to stand by my beliefs when people tell me I am too vocal about God? No. Is it easy to speak up, even as a lone voice when you know that you can't be silent about what is right & wrong or simply about how GOOD God is? No. But if I do it because God is SO good to me, I love him, he betters me and because I will honor him! 

No one said you would win every fight.

Some runs are hard, some days it's an uphill climb just to maintain a healthy lifestyle and not slip back. But fitness and health is not an overnight job, it's a lifetime work--it's a LIFE STYLE...we spend our lives investing in it. Some days we lose the fight, but we keep on. In the end, we will win, it's a marathon after all not a sprint. 

Even looking back this week I can see trials and struggles in my faith walk and to some people it may look like I am fighting a losing battle! But just because a few fights along the way don't turn out in your favor, GOD causes good to come from it. I may not win every fight, I may end up with some scuffed knees, but the battle is already won. So when I fall and get back up, I smile knowing I will never stay down! 

No one said you would ALWAYS have a cheering section. 

I will have some family at my race this weekend, but there have been plenty of early morning races, cold races, hard races where I go alone, run alone and hobble back alone. Single girl runner lifestyle! Not a huge cheering section, no hubs and kids at the finish line. But, I don't do it for that. I do it for me. I am my own cheering section and I do it because it's worth it even when NO ONE is at the finish line. 

Being a person of faith isn't always popular, I don't have a ton of people backing me up and cheering me on. Sure I have people who admire and support, I get WONDERFUL emails from readers and supporters, but the cheering section is a small one as I run the race set before me. For me? I keep going, for the JOY set before me is knowing my Savior is at the finish line. He is there holding my sign, he is waiting for me, watching for me to round that corner STRONG and a winner! 
He is the reason I run, He is the reason I CAN run and He is all the push I need. 

A friend of mine asked me, how I GET all the stuff to review, try and give away on my blog. I told her, it's Gods favor! He is just showering us with love and goodness. Thanks to Build a Sign for seeking me out, but thanks to God for all the blessings. Life is SO good... just remember: 

Have a happy Thursday! 
Remember to follow me on Twitter and to take part in the #FitFaithchat June 1st, June 15th, June 29th! 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Isn't she lovely...leg day!

Oh Boy! I love that song, it just makes me want to groove!

Yesterday was "leg day", which turned out to be a pretty challenging leg day! I Was supposed to do three sets of three quad exercises and three sets of hamstring and calf exercises. Well, I also had a long run on the books (11ish miles) and was aiming to do that all after work. Wouldn't you know it, I turned my ankle during the warm up in boot camp and really bit the dust--er pavement--hard!

scraped knee from Tuesday 

I taught through boot camp and came home to survey the damage. My ankle was so so, not a bad twist, I walked it right of. Still, Sunday I had wiped out on my bike in the rain and hurt my shin in two places, the same leg I skinned yesterday! Yikes... both were staring at me wondering "Are you REALLY going to run?" 

My answer: "Yep, I decide that, you have no say in it!" Even my scraped elbow protested, but I put it in it's place! 

I did my run, 8 miles cut short due to night falling and me not wanting to run around the lakes one more time alone. Then I came home and did: 

Bulgarian Split squats 20 each leg x 2
Lunges 30 each leg x 2
Body Squats 20 x 2 
Then called it a good, hard, good enough leg day. 

I whipped up a little protein power on a plate! 
Zucchini, onions, yams and kidney beans with garam marsala and Bragg's Liquid Amino's. Yum. It hit the spot! I also had 2 little chicken sausages from the co-op. 

I indulged too in a little Rice Dream ice cream treat because ...well just because! Some days having a treat is nice. I want to be consistent in making sure that treats are treats, but I don't want to feel deprived. 

I don't always talk about it here on my blog or on FB for those who follow me or have friended me, but I had a hard few days and it's only Wednesday, but I will say this: No matter what happens, I will count it all joy when I am facing struggles! I will remember that the battle is won and the enemy is a defeated foe. I will hold my head up high, remind myself, the world around me and anything trying to keep me down that I am more than a conqueror and that no trials, troubles, scrapes, falls or struggles can keep me down. (Romans 8:37-39) I am going to claim my position and hold fast even on those days when I don't feel like I can. I would encourage all of YOU to do the same. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Weekend Oats, actions and sales!

Happy Tuesday-- hope your having a great day!! 

Someones sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.
-Warren Buffett

I am very aware this week of what my actions mean. I believe that everything we do matters, to ourselves, to others, to people we don't even know. Today If I can take action in some situation, why wait? If I have a goal in front of me and my actions that I choose to take can bring me closer to the goal, I want to step forward and reach out to take it!  

I see within situations that come up and go by, often I fail to act, or I should say, act mindfully. I suppose by inaction, I am choosing to act in one way, but not the way I want! I do what I have always done, I do what is comfortable, I do what is my initial reaction, instead of pausing, taking a moment to look at the situation, see the path I want and move forward. 

Whether it's how I respond to a family member, or what I grab to eat when I am on the go,  it's a practice and a process and I am just really aware of it this week. I am going to work on being consistent in pausing and assessing my best action, response or choice before I act. Making every moment count for the best and toward my goal. 
 Do you ever feel the same way? 

Better Oats
I LOVE better Oats--their Oat revolution comes in a package of 5 and in a ton of great flavors! Lately I have been consistent in measuring out my regular oats, but the on the go packets are still a nice staple and Better Oats does a great job of keeping their packaging minimal and their product natural and tasty! 

Their packaging also doubles as a built in measuring cup "pouch". You empty the oats into the bowl and then fill it with water to measure out! I loved this! It was super easy and really added value to the already inexpensive oats! 

Have you tried them yet? I LOVED mine with cashews and raisins, SO good and filling. Believe it or not, I eat these mostly as a snack or even as lunch! 

Garage Sale: 

I had a weekend garage sale with a few other bloggers, Mary Minneapolis Health Coach and Kim who writes at Affairs of Living, a great Gluten Free blog! 
It was a a great rainy weekend sale, but we still rocked it out and had huge success! 

a garage sale in a REAL garage! 

Some of the goods! 

The neighbors brought over some homemade soup to warm us up at the rainy sale, it was SO amazing, and that green stuff? Watercress...I need to start cooking with watercress! Thank you SO much to Molly and Garrick for bringing it over and making our day! 

Sitting outside with these great gals for a day and a half really paid off, we cleaned up, got rid of JUNK and had a ton of fun talking! We did some swapping to, clothing for clothing, and I am happy to say I only came home with 5 items! That is only 3 over what I said--not bad! 

Do you garage sale? Do you host sales? Do you think it's worth your time with all the work? 
I am SO excited, this weekend is my Med City Half Marathon! 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Splitting workouts, boot camp & announcement!

For most of my adult life (healthy adult life) I have worked out. I ran for years and then started lifting weights, a little more than 7 years ago. I fell in LOVE with lifting weights, I still am in love with lifting weights. It increases my energy, my endurance, it helps me run and skate faster and makes my arms look great...I mean helps me carry my own groceries.  

Weight Training

It's been over a year since I have become a personal trainer and life couldn't be fuller or better, but I think I will soon stand corrected on that. I have some plans (always!) that will help life be fuller AND move me toward a new goal! I have been doing full body workouts 3 days a week and running on the other days for years. 

Well, two weeks ago, I started splitting my workouts. Meaning I am doing 4 days of strength training with cardio days in between. I am still doing cardio even on my weight days--since I am training for my half marathon and LOVE running, I am not sticking to a minimal cardio routine.  

 Monday:  3 Shoulders, 3 triceps Tuesday: 3 Quads, 3 Hamstrings, 3 Calfs Wednesday
Cardio Thursday: 3 Chest, 3 Biceps Friday: 3 Back, repeat Tuesday Saturday: Cardio/ Tabata/ Turbo Sunday: Rest  ABS: Everyday! 

For example: I am doing three exercises for chest and three exercises for triceps, three sets in each with short rests. 

Why do this? 

I will tell you. One, my workouts are now 30 min, 45 if I lollygag or do extra like on Leg day. By shortening them I am more apt to stick to them. It's easier to come in and do two body parts every day than to spend an hour and a half in the gym when I want to be outside. I can lift for 30 min and then hit the trail or go for a bike ride. 

Also, by shortening your workouts, you can take the intensity up. If I am doing three sets of 8 on a chest press, I am not going to play around. I want to feel the burn, I want the last 4 reps of every set to be the hardest and in order to achieve that, I need to up that intensity.  Increasing intensity is a great way to gain strength and burn fat! 

Burn more fat by upping metabolism. With shorter workouts and higher intensity, my metabolism is going to change and allow me to burn more fat. That is usually a big goal, correct? Not always, but usually with women that's what we want. For my goal, yes, I need to gain muscle and burn fat. 

I have to admit, part of me feels a little weird with as short as my workouts are and in a number of weeks, I will change it up again and continue to move forward and increase. In addition to the workout routine, I have really been consistent with a few areas of my diet! I am SO happy that I have been consistent with drinking 80+ ounces of water daily, upping my protein and eating cleaner than I had been. I have already witness results--a few pounds down and body fat lowered by three points! 

Drum roll please

Other than the amazing reasons above, there is another reason for my change and that is I am embarking on a new goal and that is to be a figure competitor! I don't have a show picked and right now, I am just seeing how my body reacts to the new workouts. But as an ultimate goal out there on the horizon, I am aiming for that. I feel nervous announcing this--it's like ANY goal we put out there, everyone will be able to see our struggles and our successes, but it's all about the journey!  So there you have it. I will see how long I can continue to run long distance till it's too counter active to my training. :) 

Boot camp

Speaking of training, It's that time of the year again, outdoor boot camp is back!! 
If you are in the Minneapolis area and are interested in attending, I am offering two sessions, the first starting the first week in June! Email Mary at Fit this girl dot com for more information!! 

Happy Friday! What are your weekend plans?? Tomorrow is my huge garage sale!! It's at 34th Bloomington Ave. South in Minneapolis if you want to come by! 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Midweek miles

There I was sitting in my shorts, my Nikes, my bondi band, ready to go run.  I was SO excited, it was right over the lunch hour and I knew that the lakes would be teeming with people and life! Other people out being active and enjoying the GREAT weather, I was SO excited for my midweek miles. 

Today I did 8 miles, it's only a week and a half to my Med City half Marathon!! It was SO nice outside, I don't know how long the run took me, I am sure it was average, but today  I didn't care, I wanted the sun, my ipod and the pavement...that is all! I think I may just make my every Wednesday run and 8 miler... 

It was HOT for a spring day, but we are pushing June. Still I was a rock lobster when I got home (sweet Bondi band right?)

I felt strong, I worked on my form: mid foot strike at least with a slight lean forward. It was a great day and it was a run I needed to do. I have been running almost daily and lifting consistently! I started a new routine last week and have one full week completed! I think I will really like it, I am going to be outlining it for you tomorrow. 

Being consistent is SO key, I talk about that over and over. As long as we aim for consistency, then little errors won't be errors, they will just be inconsistencies we need to put our arm around and bring back into the fold. 

In the meantime--what is your favorite GLUTE exercise? I am working on mine always love new ideas--share away, how do you make your glutes salute? (I just really badly wanted to say that!       

Go, run, DO! 

Have a wonderful day everyone and remember-- Do one thing everyday to get you closer to your goal!! 

"Have a heart that never hardens, a temper that never tires, a touch that never hurts." -Charles Dickens 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Giveaway: Photography Session!

Happy Tuesday!

I am feeling really blessed today! The sun is bright, the air is crisp, I have a full week ahead of me, and... I got some cool pictures taken!! 

Mycah Schrader of Mycah Schrader Photography and I teamed up for a quick photo shoot at 501 Fit, a club in Minneapolis. She is quick, unique, professional and really knows how to capture an amazing shot!

I am SO thrilled to offer a FREE  forty minute photography session for a reader, follower, FB friend or ANYONE who wants to take advantage of this offer!! 

1) It's as simple as commenting on my FB photo taken by Mycah...click HERE and comment on the photo. A winner will be chosen at random, by a random number generator Next Monday May 23rd at 5pm!  

2) Also, do check out her FB presence HERE and friend her there to see what she is up to and check out all her amazing work! Also visit her website at Mycah Schrader Photography

The fine print: 
The winner will receive: 

One 40 minute session

Portraits only. Family sessions & maternity are an additional charge.
Not for professional or commercial use, unless compensated to photographer
3 high resolution jpegs included for printing and online use!
* Must cite photographer in any online posts
* For MN residents, Session location TBD

Good Luck!! 

Monday, May 16, 2011

The good, the bad and the Goal

Happy Monday all! 

I hope you are well, I have had an exceptional week last week, but I can't tell you ALL about it today, I will give you little bits and pieces...  

I really dislike the idea of doing "good" and doing "bad" with my food or workouts. I don't want to set myself up for failure, but I also don't want to be down on myself if I do something:

I didn't want to 
 I shouldn't have
or that is BAD

Who needs that kind of guilt hanging over them when it comes to food or to a workout? Not me. Good or bad is such a harsh way to look at our choices! Be empowered, chose what you want in the situation you are in, to meet the goals you are committed to. No apologies!!

So, last week instead of trying to be perfect, I had a few goals that I wanted to do and I did! I wanted to get more protein in, especially at breakfast, because it sets the whole tone of my eating day, I know that morning protein sustains me and fuels me, it works.

So, I had eggs: Hard boiled, poached, sunny side up and even when I went out for breakfast with a friend, I had steak and eggs!! I bypassed the amazing looking pancakes for protein, but also allowed myself the toast and hash-browns (hidden under the eggs) because deprivation stinks and I had achieved my goal all week and wanted to have hash browns. Who doesn't?! 

I also wanted to up my greens and made it a goal to get back to having one green monster a day, aka going through spinach like crazy again! When I would feel hungry in the afternoon and want to snack, I reminded myself of my goal: HEY! Get those greens in, and reached for my handy blender for a GM instead of another snack. 

I am notoriously bad with drinking water, but I am trying to see some specific results with my new workouts and so I knew I had to up the water... (not do GOOOD, just DO!) and I did up it and I started to see the effect right away. 

By keeping our goals in mind, we can over come the good and bad thinking... just think, I am drinking water because I want to feel more energy. I am eating protein for muscle growth, I am eating greens so I GLOW from the inside out. 

For me, I had to say " I don't want chocolate, I want to lower my body fat percentage." (which is one of my goals at the gym) And even if you don't do ALL you wanted to, you did some with that goal pressing you forward! It's desiring the end result more than the vice or craving, yet not denying yourself. It's a fine line.  How do you walk it? 

I also went to a boot camp class at a different branch of my work! 
It was a great, sweaty experience where I got some new ideas for my own classes and my own workouts! I love sharing information and learning from others! Besides the branch I went to was one I used to attend when I worked in corporate America--what a throw back!  PLUS It helped me reach a goal with my new workout routine which I will talk more about this week. 

A new friend of mine gave me this wonderful necklace:  

As it turns out when she sees something she likes and buys for herself, she always buys a second one to give away.... I was the LUCKY recipient of this pretty cross on just such occasion. Isn't that wonderful? That is an act of service that I would love to incorporate into my life to bless others. 

Do you randomly give gifts to others when you are moved?

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Although Mary from Fit this girl is a CPT, always consult your physician or health care provider before beginning any nutrition or exercise program. Use of the programs, advice, and information contained in this website is at the sole choice and risk of the reader.