Friday, December 19, 2014

See you in 2015!

Wishing you all a Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I'm taking some time off to travel with the family and visit friends.

Oh, and run another half marathon :)

See you in 2015!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

TBT: First races!

Thanks to the beauty of the TimeHop App, I was reminded that today was my girl's first 5k!  It was very cold, very snowy, and very icy.  She complained the entire 3 miles until she saw the finish and turned on the sprinter legs.  Freaking SMOKED me.

I also decided today that a little redemption was in order after running the Jax Bank Half last year in the pouring rain.
I'm gonna run it again this year :)  Hopefully in much better weather.   Nothing like planning a half marathon with 10 days notice to motivate you to run!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Training Tuesday: back to double digits

With numbers like this, you would think the scale would be moving in the right direction, but sadly, no.  Le sigh.

Yes, I know there are other ways to measure progress - like being able to run a 10 mile long run and feel ok afterwards, even if it took 8 miles to find my groove.  Or getting in all your strength workouts and feeling like you've kicked your own ass.

I like the strength training I'm doing and the spinervals make the bike work go faster, but overall I just feel like I'm literally spinning my wheels and getting nowhere.

Running: 15.5
Biking: 39.26 miles
Strength: 4 workouts

Monday, December 15, 2014

Meal Monday: Not So Chunky Monkey Smoothie

I discovered something this morning that might be my new favorite thing ever.  

PB2 - powdered peanut butter!

At only 45 calories for 2 TBSP, it comes in a couple hundred less than the alternative natural peanut butter or nut butter.  I'm not sure how healthy it is but the only ingredients are peanuts, sugar and salt, so I'm going to keep trying to find ways to use it.

Today, I made a *not so* Chunky Monkey smoothie in my Ninja.

1 frozen banana
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
2 Tbsp PB2
a dash or so of cinnamon

Throw it all in the Ninja or blender of your choice and enjoy.  

Calories: 171
Fat: 4g
Carbs: 27g
Protein: 7g

I could probably add some protein powder to up the protein but today I just paired it with a scrambled egg and my usual coffee with SF Coffeemate.  I'm afraid the protein powder might make it too sweet, but I'm definitely going to give it a try sometime.  Total calories for breakfast came in around 270.

So far, aside from my yummy smoothie, Monday has kicked my ass.  I missed my workout because I just couldn't get up so now I need 3 workouts tonight instead of the 2 I already had planned and my van keeps finding ways to break and ruin any plans I may have because I keep having to sink money into the dumb thing. 

I know they say that your day is determined by your attitude, but I'm having a hard time being positive and not giving up.  Tell me something good that has happened to you recently and maybe I can live vicariously through you for awhile.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thankful Thursday: progress in a reflection

I've been very discouraged lately by the lack of progress on the scale despite 2-3 workouts a day and tracking my eating again.

Then yesterday morning I caught a glimpse of myself reflected in the window while I spun at 6am.

I wasn't going to post this because it's a really crappy picture and I'm not wearing a shirt, but the mug covers most of me up and I thought it made a good point.

Is that the hint of triceps? And maybe shoulders? I get so wrapped up in the number on the scale that sometimes I don't notice those little things. Just proves sometimes you find progress in the most unlikely places.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

WIAW: A @ninjakitchen Nutri Ninja Pro #review

Way back in June when I attended the FitBloggin 14 conference in Savannah, I chatted with the good folks at Ninja Kitchen about their great blenders.  They had samples everyday and OMG they were so tasty.  (Now, if I can only find the recipe cards they handed out!) A couple weeks later, one of their reps reached out to me to see if I'd be interested in reviewing a Ninja Pro.  Of course I say "YES!!!"

Long story short - it took a lot longer to get one into my hands, but here it is!  The Ninja Kitchen social media person on Twitter was very responsive in figuring out the hold up on my Ninja.
I couldn't wait to start trying it out, so my girl and I tried a couple experimental smoothies with stuff we had in the house.  It's going to take some more experimenting before I'm ready to Ninja all the things because the first couple tries were sorta flops from a flavor standpoint.

After hitting up the store for ingredients - we had a little more success.  The Pro comes with a small recipe booklet and so far so good!  Yesterday morning I made the Bright Side Mocha Shake and at only about 200 calories for a HUGE serving, this was a winner.  I only used coffee that I pulled out of my regular cup of morning joe in the recipe and there wasn't a ton of coffee flavor, so I'm thinking next time some espresso might work better.  Even so, it was still delish.
So yummy and FILLING

The Top 'O the Morning Smoothie was FANTASTIC.  It made a huge amount with a big calorie punch (at about 370 calories) so my girl and I split this one.  Please ignore the super messy counter top.  Just keeping it real, folks.
Breakfast Success! 
My next attempt did not go as well.  I tried the Tabbouleh and instead of the nice dip pictured, I basically ended up with parsley soup. Kind of reminded me of those Pinterest Fail pictures - Nailed It! The recipe said to blend for 15 seconds and mine was liquid in about 5 seconds.  They aren't kidding when they say the blades will crush through ice and frozen fruit.  It also pulverizes anything else in the container.

Epic Lunch Fail
A few product details:

  • 900 Watts Professional Power
  • #1 Most Powerful Nutrient & Vitamin Extraction the power to unlock the natural benefits of fruits & veggies
  • Ninja® Pro Extractor Blades crush through ice, seeds, skins and stems for a smooth, even consistency
  • Sip& Seal™ Lids for healthy, personalized drinks on the go
  • Frozen Blending crush through ice and frozen fruit for cold, healthy drinks and smoothies
  • 18 and 24 oz blender cups with 2 sip and seal lids.  The lids are awesome but the cups are probably a little big to use with a straw - mine didn't quite reach to the bottom.

I was impressed with how smooth my drinks got in only a matter of seconds, even with using the entire fruit like the orange in the breakfast smoothie.  The husband has also started using it to blend his protein shakes after the gym.  I'm not sure this will replace my other blender or my food processor, but it's definitely a nice addition to my gadget lineup.  

Do you have a favorite smoothie or Nutri Ninja recipe?  I think my next experiment is going to be making my own almond butter - maybe with some honey or apple.  

You can find Ninja Kitchen on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube!

(Ninja Kitchen provided me with a Nutri Ninja Pro without charge in exchange for a product review.  As always, the opinions are all my own.)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Training Tuesday: trying to get my groove back

I still have no real purpose for training other than to try to get my pants to fit better again.  I guess that's good enough for now.

Running: 4 runs for 16.37 miles (all in the 10:40ish range)
Cycling: 3 spins for 34.12 miles
Lifting: 5 workouts

I started a new lifting plan mid-week and I could barely move by the weekend, which is why Sunday was a big, fat ZERO.  I guess one day completely off per week isn't the end of the world, although it makes it very difficult to stay within my calorie budget.  I didn't even eat much and I was over by 200 calories :(.

Monday, December 8, 2014

30 years

How has it been 30 years?

I was 14 when Mom died.  A freshman in high school.

I didn't even realize what day it was until I was watching the Broncos game last night (sorry, Mom, I know you were a HUGE Cowboy's fan) and saw the date on my phone. It hit me that Monday (today) would be 30 years since skin cancer took my mom.

December 8, 1984

She never got to see me graduate. 

She wasn't at my wedding. 

She wasn't there when her twin grand babies were born. 

She won't see them graduate in May.

Cancer fucking sucks.

I miss you, Mom.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Fitness Friday: and so it begins??

To run the Fifth Third River Bank Run 25k in 2015 wasn't in question when they unveiled the new medal.  Isn't she pretty!?!  Finally, a re-design after using the same medals year after year after year after get the idea.

What's in question is whether I'm ready to start training for another big race.  I got a little burned out training for Detroit but the payback of a nearly 35 minute marathon PR was worth it.  I'm wondering what I could pull off for the 25k in May.  How hard do I want to work?  My PR is a 2:41:33 (10:25 pace) and that was pretty tough.  Think I could go sub 2:30?  That would be around a 9:30 pace.  I think that's probably a big of a stretch carrying the extra weight I have and seriously lacking in speedwork, but May is a long ways off.

I haven't registered yet because there's rumor that they are partnering with another race and that could mean special bling to sign up at the same time, so I'm going to hold off for now.

In any case, the first official "long" run is tomorrow morning.  It's a whopping 5 miles but since I'm still toying with the idea of a winter half, I'm planning to run an extra 3.  Anyone want to join me in 8 frigid miles tomorrow morning?  At least it's not supposed to snow.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

WIAW: an apparently all the things weigh-in

And just like that, I'm up 4.4 pounds and the heaviest I've been in over 6 months.  Great freaking way to finish up 2014, don't you think?

I don't even think I went all that nuts over Thanksgiving either.  I had a very small serving of stuffing and stuck to my paleo dessert.  Filled my plate with lean turkey and sweet potatoes. My veggie dishes were paleo (although the carrots did have a ton of butter and bourbon so maybe not quite paleo).  Other than the stupid zucchini and banana breads that were made this weekend, I've stayed away from wheat.  Since the weekend, I'm back to paleo-ish except for that damn bread.  It needs to be removed from the house.  I've even been drinking water like it's my JOB to try to get rid of any of the crap from the weekend.

The bottom line?  I obviously still ate too much and too much of the wrong things.  One of my friends suggested it's the amoxicilan and high calorie stupid yogurt I'm eating (because the antibiotics hate me) causing me to puff up or something, but that doesn't seem right either.  I know I haven't worked out enough because of whatever stupid bug I contracted, although the past 3 days I've done pretty well.  I got on the scale this morning and wondered why the fuck I even bother to work out because it's obviously not doing anything.

It really sucks and I'm pissed at myself for blowing any bit of progress I ever made.  I can barely remember anymore what it's like to be in the 140s, much less how great it felt and looked to be in the 130s. At this rate, I should be well up over 160 by the new year.  Happy 2015 to me.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Training Tuesday: When is a fail a not fail?

I was having a discussion with a couple of my friends on Twitter this weekend.  We were talking about how many miles we each ran in 2014 and we all had an impressive number of miles.  1500, just shy of 1000 (and she'll hit it by the end of the year) and then my 771.  Now, 771 miles running in the first 11 months of the year is nothing to sneeze at - that's like running from my home in Grand Rapids, Michigan to Atlanta, Georgia.

But when you realize you're so close to hitting 1000 miles and knowing there is no way you can get there, it stings a little.  It doesn't help that I only ran 34 miles in November and 8 miles in January.  Looks like both ends of this year are going to suck because I'm not running 229 miles this month.

They were both quick to point out my killer marathon PR this year - I'm very proud of that - but I also set a goal to run a sub-2 half.  I never even came close and didn't even try.  I only ran 3 half marathons this year and my best was 2:17. It wasn't even close to a PR.

So, was the year a fail?  I only met 1 goal - going sub-5 in the marathon. I crushed that by going 4:52.  Hitting 1000 miles running was never written down as a goal, but that's always a good number to shoot for.  I didn't even come close to my sub-2 goal.  I have friends who believe I have it in me but setting both goals in the same year was probably a really stupid idea.  I didn't do nearly enough speed work because I spent half the year training for distance.

This is supposed to be week 1 of River Bank Run 25k training but since I haven't registered yet and I've been too sick to run, no training to report.

Maybe next week or next year.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Motivation Cyber Monday and Giveaways!

My friends at Momentum Jewelry wanted me to pass on their Cyber Monday special.  I love my Motivate Wrap and Foot Notes so I was more than happy to help out.  They would be perfect for the runners and non-runners on your list.

Speaking of gift lists - have you seen the MASSIVE giveaway we have going on at The Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans?  This is probably my favorite post of the entire year - so you must go check it out and enter.  You do NOT have to be a runner to love what we have in our 2014 Holiday Gift Guide.

What's on your Christmas list this year?  

Happy New Year 2020

It looks like my M.O. is to open this blog when I get the notification the domain name renewed. LOL oh well. I hope everyone is having a n...