Jan 2, 2012

Break it Down

If you checked in last week you might have seen my goals for 2012. This year I'm also going to try and break it down into monthly goals and reassess every month. Sounds like a good plan to me. I find that having some benchmarks to check progress with will help keep me on track, let me see my progress (or lack there of), and keep me motivated to reach the BIG goals.

start a new training log

fill in the gaps on my old training log

run 100 miles ... total

run a mile as fast as I can

register for a race

bench press 65 pounds (3 sets)

register for a Triathlon

buy a swim suit and get in the damn pool

schedule to take the nursing boards... and pass

work my way up to 7 1/2 mile repeats (currently at 5)

read a leisure book

do yoga twice

tempo run once

hill repeats twice

So, first thing's first. I'm going for a run.

Jan 1, 2012

Welcome 2012

I was able to catch the sunrise over this ocean this morning to welcome in 2012. I think every year should start like that. Incredible.

FYI that's my super puffy hangover face with a lazy eye and wine lips. Still awesome.

Welcome, 2012. This is going to be an epic year. 

Dec 30, 2011

Photo Friday: Christmas edition

So perhaps you read my goals for 2012? You may have noticed two things - I would like to blog more and I'm initiating a picture a day project. So I'm going to try and kill two birds with one stone. That's a pretty awful metaphor when you actually type it out. Anyways... I'm thinking I will post my pictures from the week every friday. This week I will start with a few of my favorite things from Christmas this year. 

Note, had I thought about this idea in advance it would probably be a post with more family and meaningful things BUT I didn't so it's mostly materialistic. Judge away. 

Also, I promise less words in future editions :)

Off to Chris' work Christmas party
Waiting on Santa :) 

Christmas morning mimosas - best tradition ever. 
Oh, just the best Christmas present ever. The new Garmin Forerunner 610. It's downright sexy.
SmartWool neck/face warmer for running. Solid. 


Sweaty Bands. These things seriously rock.
No, not a cat. A 7 cup food processor. Look out, kitchen.

Most people are bummed when they get socks for Christmas. BUT these are the best socks in the universe for runners.

Yep. 2012.
That is all. How'd I do? In case you couldn't tell, my family is incredibly supportive/enabling in my running addiction :)

Dec 29, 2011

Better. Faster. Stronger.

It's that time of year! I love love love everything about ringing in a new year. So without further ado - My goals for 2012!!

When I think about what I want 2012 to be about these words probably encompass it best: consistency, endurance, strength, happiness, flexibility. They pertain to all aspects of my life and reflect characteristics I hope to embody and focus on in 2012.

average 25 mpw  ---> 25-30 miles per week
1300 miles for the year  ---> 1500 miles
sub 22:00 5k (PR 22:19)
sub 1:50:00 half marathon ---> 1:45:00 or bust
sub 3:55:00 marathon (PR 3:58:32)
4 day run week
quality workout at least 1 x week (hills, tempo, speed work, etc.)
run with intention. no more crap/junk/trash miles.
run a mile as fast as I can in Janurary, June, and December.

do an unassisted pull-up ---> do 10
bench press 100lb (3 sets) ---> bench press my weight
upper body strength training 2 x week (back/bicep + chest/tricep)
leg strength training 1 x week

get outside my comfort zone. get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
cross-train 2 x week
1 complete rest day a week
spin class 1x week  ---> 2 x week
yoga 1 x week
take swim lessons
bike to Center City Philadelphia on the Schulykill and back
do a triathlon

take a picture a day
stop picking my cuticles
stop swearing like a trucker ---> stop swearing
work on my posture
blog more. at least 3 x week
go to Vegas
floss every day
read 12 books for fun
organize my race bibs in a fun way for display
plan a wine tour
visit RIT
mail birthday and Christmas cards

pass NLCEX
obtain a position as a Registered Nurse in SE PA
join a professional nursing association
finish and submit Villanova application
start the bridge courses for BSN or MSN

Some goals I have added what I call "second levels" to. My first goal is what I think are realistic and attainable ... a SMART goal, if you will.  I plan on reassessing my goals every few months and if the "second level" begins to seem realistic then I will adjust to my bigger (now attainable) goal. Make sense?

What are YOUR goals for 2012?! Don't forget make them SMART ... specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely :)

Lastly, remember: She believed she could, so she did. Happy New Year.

Dec 4, 2011

What's Next?!

I considered this week to be my first real week back into my groove post Philadelphia Marathon. I cross trained a couple days last week but nothing spectacular. I did what I felt like and I was perfectly okay with not feeling like doing much.

This week was a whole new ball game. I'm not exactly sure what has gotten into me but I LOVE it and I hope it doesn't go away anytime soon. I think it has a lot to do with having a rough time at the marathon.

I find that while training for a race (a marathon in particular) I fall into the habit of "just running". Part of me is scared of doing too much and having it negatively impact my running but in reality, not doing other things probably does more bad than good. The other part of me is probably just lazy. This is one of the many things that I'm aiming to change about the way I train next year. Starting now. I'm easing myself back into running and mileage and incorporating more cross training. I have even developed (with A LOT of help from the bf) a strength training routine that I love. I can't wait to keep improving and get stronger.

This week I was all about getting outside my comfort zone and doing whatever made me happy. Here's a look at how my week went.

3 miles EZ

Arc Trainer 40:00
Stationary bike 20:00
Strength (Back & Biceps)
  seated row 3x8x40
  shoulder shrugs (front and side) 3x8x15
  bicep curl 3x8x10
  bicep curl maching 3x8x20

Run 3.3 miles. Dropped off my car for new tires, ran home. Ran back to pick it up. No watch, just running! I only know the distance because I've done it once before.

Arc Trainer 30:00
Strength (Legs & Shoulders)
  adductor machine 3x8x50
  abductor machine 3x8x70
  hamstring curls
  glute extensions 3x8x20
  dumbbell shoulder press 3x8x15
  machine shoulder press 3x8x25
  leg press 3x8x50
  squats 3x10
Run 1 mile after all the strength training... because I FELT LIKE IT!!

Run 6 miles - impromptu progressive tempo run. I went out for 3-4 easy miles and changed my mind after the first mile. It felt SO good. I felt like I found my fast again. I think I must have left it in the trails somewhere when I was training for Philly. I'm especially impressed given Thursday's leg work.

For split/mile 5 I alternated 0.10 miles sprinting with running. It was the epitome of having fun while kicking my ass. Love.

Strength (Chest & Triceps)
  bench press 1x8x45, 1x8x50, 1x8x55
  skull crushers 3x8x15bar
  incline dumbbell chest press 3x8x15
  chest fly 1x8x40, 1x8x45, 1x8x50
  tricep extension machine 1x8x20, 1x8x25, 1x8x30

Run 8 miles - I went out on my usual path with the intention of just running to my heart's content. I didn't have any time, pace, or distance goals. I brought my handheld and just went running. It was beautiful and I could not have asked for a better run.

21 miles
strength training x 3
90 minutes cross training
feeling more motivated than ever. Better. Faster. Stronger.

Goals for next week:
run 4 days 20-25 miles
long run 8-10 miles
spin class x 1... maybe get out on my bike if the weather holds up
strength x 3
   back & biceps
   chest & triceps
   legs & shoulders
attempt a pull-up
start core work
more protein

It feels good to not be training for anything in particular. I'm just out there doing what feels good. I've got my eyes on a late winter 5k and I'm throwing a bunch of big goals around my head for next year so stay tuned. Happy running.

Dec 2, 2011

Dear Santa,

It's December already!! Which means Christmas is right around the corner. I've compiled you a list of things that this runner who has big goals and even bigger dreams for 2012 would be incredibly happy to find under the Christmas tree this year. Please note, this might also be super handy for other runners on your list :)

CEP Compression Socks - like a hug for your legs. I love my bright pink ones and I think a pair of neon green or plain black would go nicely. Size III.

CW-X Insulator/Stability Tights (full length) - like a WARM hug for your legs when it's literally freezing outside. This way I can avoid having to call my mom to bring me another layer mid-run to prevent getting frostbite on my booty.

Garmin 610 - My 405 has seen better days and to be honest the 610 is just way better and cooler. Obviously, I would donate my 405 to an aspiring runner because it changed my life and could do the same for someone else.

iTunes Gift Cards - an endless source of motivation = good music

Barnes & Noble Gift Cards - for audiobooks to listen to while running and for Nook books for the elliptical or stationary bike. Also I'm a nerd and like to read a lot about running and triathlons.

Fleet Feet Gift Cards - You just can't go wrong here. I love this store with all my heart and go out of my way to get things here, even if they are more expensive sometimes.

Lululemon Gift Cards - Best workout clothes in the face of the earth. Unfortunately they also happen to be priced accordingly.. exhibit a, exhibit b, exhibit c

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11 (because I haven't tried out the new 12s yet) - Size 9.5 :) Purple if you can still find make them. You can NEVER have too many pairs of running shoes. 

Since 2012 will be the year of my first ever (and possibly first of many) triathlons...

Goggles and Swim Cap - do your research, Santa. I want some really good ones that won't let water leak into my eyes and get all foggy :)

PhillyTri Registration - A girl has to have goals.

Bike Trainer - No, not a person, silly. An indoor setup for my bike so I can watch TV and kick my butt to get ready for my first triathlon.

Some things I absolutely love and already own that you might want to also consider for other runners this year:

Yurbuds Inspire Pro - A review

Nathan Intensity Hydration Pack - best running investment I made this year

Smart Wool Socks -- a winter/spring MUST have

Tikka Plus2 Head Lamp - another must have for those dark early morning or evening runs.

Nike Tempo Shorts - I currently own approximately 12 pairs and they never let me down.

SpiBelt - Super duper handy on race day. I plan on using it A LOT next year.

Lastly, Santa - an iPhone 4S :) Because, well, I think I've been really really really good this year.

I hope that helps!

Meg <3