Races

In prep for the Philly Marathon on Nov. 23, I just scheduled my fall races and am super excited. Here they are:

Sept 14: Queens Half Marathon

Oct. 5: Grete’s Great Gallop Half Marathon

Oct. 18: Flushing Meadow 10k

Oct. 23: Hoboken 5k

Ideally you want to schedule a half marathon about 4-6 weeks before the full so you can sufficiently recover. A half marathon is also a good time to execute pacing and fueling strategies and to test out that new running outfit.  Remember, nothing new on race day! Schedule shorter distance races closer to the marathon to build strength and incorporate the last bits of speedwork into your training. Just be careful not to schedule anything too close to the race or you will not recover properly. 

I am getting excited for Philly and also am excited to watch the NYC Marathon coming up in a few weeks!

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Who is running a fall marathon this year? Tell me how your training is going!

Hill Work on a Treadmill

This morning I had a 5 mile hill run. Since it was still icy outside I decided to hit the treadmill again for what I thought would be an easy 5 miles. Hardest 5 miles of my life. I decided to do a workout called Sixes and Sevens:

  • 90 secs at a 6% incline at marathon pace
  • 1 min recovery jog
  • 1 min at a 7% incline at 10k pace
  • 1 min recovery jog.

I could not hit my MP or 10k pace at those inclines because I was just not used to running on hills that steep (for me). So I ran them at about 6mph and decided to keep that pace for my recovery so that I was maintaining an even pace.

Even though I hate hills, they are important to our training.

Hill workouts = speedwork. :)

Hill repeats will make you faster, says this study- Runners who did hill repeats (any kind) for 6 weeks improved their 5k time by 2%.  So do them.

More Snow and Indoor Workouts

This past weekend we were hit with our first blizzard. As much as I love winter running, safety is always first because being injured is WAY worse than having to fit in a few treadmill runs. Luckily though, I was able to get in a run outside the day after the storm (Saturday):

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After my run, I did some strength work. I usually only get in about 15 min of exercises after a run. This is what I did:

  • Reverse plank dip – 30x
  • Planks with leg left – 1 min
  • Side planks – 1 min each side
  • Bicycle – 50x
  • Superman – 20x
  • Metronome – 20x
  • Deadlifts with kettlebells – 20x

Some of these workouts you can find here.

Sunday was a different story. We got some freezing rain and all the snow on the ground turned into black ice. This is very dangerous so please do not run outside in this kind of weather or get some Yak Trax.  I almost fell just walking down the street. So instead of going outside (because it was slippery and I was fighting a cold), I hit the treadmill and did some intervals. Then I went to a spin class at Revolve. I really like Revolve classes because it’s like a dance party every time. See my post here on Revolve.  The music is always upbeat and the instructors are always so encouraging. Since I know you are as depressed as I am about having to go indoors during times like this,  here are some ideas if you are stuck inside:

  • Take a class: This is a good time to work on your strength/flexibility. With so many boutique studios in NYC now, you have so many options. Otherwise, your local gym probably offers some general total body classes. I take Shred 55 at NYSC with a handful of instructors.
  • Do your own strength exercises/stretching: Ok, maybe you don’t like being stuck inside a room with a bunch of sweaty strangers. You can always do your own strength routine at the gym or at home. See above.
  • Spin: I used to be a spin hater until I found good instructors. Spin is a great way to cross-train for runners because it works the opposite muscles.  Go to a spin studio/class or do your own workout on a stationary bike. I like classes at Revolve, Flywheel, or  Swerve. If you are poor (like me), these studios sometimes will offer free classes.
  • Intervals/speed work on the treadmill: I like the LADDER. Warm up for one mile. Speed up for one min and then recover for one min. Repeat at two mins, three mins, so on. I usually do a 1-1-2-2-3-3 sequence and then work my way back down. Cool down for one mile. It depends on how much time you have and want to spend on the ‘mill.

If I have to resort to a treadmill run, I will usually limit it to no more than one hour (because otherwise I will go crazy) and then take a class or do strength work afterward. That is exactly what I will be doing today.

Also, this week is the FIRST WEEK of marathon training!!! I have four short runs and one 10 miler scheduled. No more blizzards, please!

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What do you do to cross-train?

Anyone ever use Yak Trax? Worth it?

Oatmeal, Tempo, and the 90s!

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with cold oatmeal. It started with the swiss oatmeal I used to get at Corner Bakery when I lived in DC. I have not found a place that serves the same delicious oatmeal just yet (and this was almost 8 years ago!!). I’ve tried to replicate this oatmeal many times but have not been able to. Finally, I just settled on my own version of cold oatmeal. Ok, this looks gross but I promise it is delicious and nutritious, especially since I added Honey Chex to it:

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of quick oats (I use TJs, of course)
  • 1 cup of almond millk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • handful of Chex

Directions:

  • Mix all ingredients together except the Chex
  • Refrigerate overnight
  • Add Chex (or granola, or any type of cereal or topping you desire) in the morning

My TEMPO RUN last night was a 7 miler. I felt really good and I want to attribute it to the clouds. I also wondered if spinning the day before helped so I will try it again next week and let you know. My tempo run last night was 8 minutes faster than last week’s 7 mile tempo, a huge difference.

Last night I played a bunch of 90s (maybe some early 2k) songs for Phil and made him guess them but the ONLY SONG he guessed correctly was a George Michael’s song!! Obvi he was missing out in the 90s. I, on the other hand, began to update my playlists. Here are some of the jams I added:

  1. Together Again- Janet Jackson
  2. Gangsta’s Paradise- Coolio
  3. All Cried Out- Allure
  4. Escapade- Janet Jackson
  5. Family Affair- Mary J. Blige
  6. This is How We Do It- Montell Jordan
  7. As I Lay Me Down- Sophie B. Hawkins
  8. Are You That Somebody- Aaliyah
  9. It’s Not Right but It’s Okay- Whitney Houston
  10. Heartbreaker Remix- Mariah Carey w/ Da Brat and Missy Elliot

On another note, I missed my run tonight. I’m sad but not really.

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-What songs are on your playlist?

– What do you do when you miss a run?? How do you feel?

First speed workout

Today was a busy day on the track. I did my first speed workout on the Great Hill Track in Central Park. I’m not a huge fan because it’s an unpaved track so it’s not smooth and there are bumps and gravel all over :( There was also some field trip going on/super soaker fest because I dodged about a million kids, trying not to get hit with water. In addition to the super soaker fest there were two running groups doing track workouts so all in all, a lot of dodging and weaving.

The workout today was 12x400s with 400 recovery. One of the dudes from the local running club asked me how long my workout was because I had been there forever. It’s true.

My 400s came in between 2:01-2:07 (averaging about a 2:03) and I recovered by walking/easy running 400. I felt pretty good after the workout but it was really long. I didn’t really like the recovering part because I felt like it took me forever to walk around that damn track…not to mention the track is only 350 meters so you actually have to go a little more and you feel tricked.

After my run, I was stretching and saw a lady walk by with an injured pigeon in her hand. I was kind of grossed out but then immediately felt like an awful human being when she came up to me and told me the pigeon was dying and she wanted to lay it down to die near the trees. But then she touched my arm after she put the pigeon down and I started to silently freak out. I’m such a horrible person. Sigh.

For dinner tonight I had popcorn and more chocolate covered bananas. Dinner really is the easiest meal of the day.

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What would you guys have done about the pigeon?!

More Cookies…for dinner

I tried to make healthier chocolate chip cookies tonight. I used a recipe from Cooking Light except I only used half the butter and subbed the other half with unsweetened apple sauce. They actually taste pretty good (I had FOUR) but they came out looking like cookie balls. I wonder why they didn’t flatten out?! I suppose next time I’ll just have to flatten them myself. I made 25 of these balls (recipe called for four dozen).

My workout tonight definitely didn’t counter these cookies, which really aren’t THAT healthy. I did five miles of intervals. I did this workout, which I will call 1-2-3. It’s one min fast, one min recovery, 2 min fast, 2 min recovery and so on. I did 1-2-3-2-1-2-3-2-1 with a warm up and cool down. I had to do this on the treadmill since there is an escaped murderer on the loose in my neighborhood and it was dark out when I got home. I’m going to my friend’s house tomorrow night for a girl’s slumber party, which means there is going to be a LOT of eating and drinking, which also means I am going to have to literally work my butt off beforehand.

I will continue my search for a healthier cookie recipe that doesn’t look like balls!!