Happy Sunday! This past week I got back to running after my week off with some short, easy runs and started Operation Lean and Strong to firm up and shed some flab. The cold and snow must have gotten lost en route to March and showed up instead this first week of April. I loved it! Running in the cold and snow is awesome when you aren’t training!
This week’s runs were a reminder of why I love running. Quiet, early mornings all to myself on the trail before the rest of the city wakes up. Snow falling peacefully around me. My headlamp capturing the bunnies on the side of the trail before they hop away. Lights from Downtown reflecting in the river. Spending time with myself and my thoughts before I start another busy day. My heart was full of happiness to be back to my trail.
The strength training, on the other hand–ouch! Yes, I did strength training all year while doing half marathon training, but a few clamshells and glute bridges are nothing like the strength training I’m doing now. I was a sweaty mess at the end of each session and sore pretty much all week. This plan is kicking my butt, but that’s exactly what I need.
I’m also struggling with sleep. I usually never have a problem sleeping. I can fall asleep on a hard, small kid’s chair during a show by a very loud band after having both a 5-hour energy and a large can of iced tea. (Yes, this is a true story.) While I was training and fatigued, I had no problem getting a solid 8 or more hours of sleep a night. One of the things I was looking forward to after training is going to bed and getting up later. Well, my body didn’t get that memo. I still get really tired very early and will start to fall asleep on the couch shortly after 8 p.m. But then my body doesn’t want or need 8 hours of sleep anymore, so I wake up in the middle of the night and can’t fall back to sleep. And in a vicious cycle, I’m tired early again the next night. I guess I just need to really make an effort to try to stay awake for a little longer each night. I think maybe I just need to run more. 🙂 It has been hard to run so little this week. My body is definitely ready to get back to it. The good news is that this upcoming week I can up my mileage a little though still have to keep it easy. Sounds good to me!
On to the recap! I started to take photos of all my workouts and not just runs, so now you can see all my workout outfits. Pretty exciting, huh? 😉
Week at a Glance
- Training mode: Getting back to running after a week off since my goal race
- Days running: 4
- Miles this week: 10.67
- Miles this month: 17.17
- Miles this year: 485.99
- Strength training sessions: 6
- Time strength training: 128 minutes
I did 27 minutes of one of the strength training with weights routines I mentioned in my Lean and Strong post.
Easy Run: 2 miles
I was supposed to keep my first run between 20 and 30 minutes. It was snowing and so pretty! I felt great and wished I could have been out longer.
In the evening I did 21 minutes of strength training using body weight.
Easy run: 2.7 miles
It was cold and snowing again but I felt great.
I took two of my cats to the vet’s for their annual shots, and it was as traumatic as ever for all three of us. And one of my cats has to go back in two weeks. 🙁
In the evening I did 26 minutes of strength training with weights.
Easy run: 2.22 miles
The dog woke me at 3:22 a.m. when he was whining at the bedroom door. There just isn’t room for three of us in bed, so when he wants to sleep in our bed (he has his own bed in our bedroom that he won’t use), either everyone is uncomfortable or one of us has to get out of bed, and it’s usually me. I opened the door to let him in bed and then went to spend the rest of the night in our spare room, where my cat Rasputin quickly found me and staked his claim on my belly. Unfortunately, I couldn’t fall back asleep. I was supposed to run only every other day, but I’d rather run then lie in bed not being able to sleep. Just as I decided to get up at 4:30, there was thunder, lightning, and heavy rain. Great. But by the time I left the house, everything was gone except for some light flurries. Because I was out early, I didn’t see a single soul and loved being out by myself. I know these cold mornings won’t last much longer, so I’m appreciating them while they’re here!
In the evening I did 13 minutes of upper body and core strength training.
I did 27 minutes of strength training with weights.
When I was training, I had little time for house cleaning, which drove me nuts. Since the race I’ve been devoting time to thoroughly cleaning. In the afternoon, my husband and I did more cleaning, getting rid of stuff, and organizing. It feels so good to have a clean, organized house again!
It had snowed in the morning and was still really cold in the afternoon, so we took Django on a shorter walk to the park and back.
In the evening we went to Brillobox, a popular bar that has great food, including many vegan options. It can get really crowded so I wanted to go early to be sure we could get a table since we were eating dinner there. My husband jokes that we’re the old couple there for the early-bird special. We got there at 6 p.m. and were the only ones there but then saw one other couple who came out of the bathroom. They were about 70 years old or so and must have gotten there right as it opened at 5. We couldn’t stop laughing, though I told Dave not to laugh too hard because that would be us soon enough. It softened our egos, then, when younger people started coming in shortly after. Anyway, I had the best meal I’ve had in a while! We started with flash-fried Creole cauliflower with maple mustard dipping sauce. It was simply heavenly! I got the veggie meatball sub and loved it. Either the veggie meatballs or the marinara sauce was deliciously spicy. I cleaned my whole plate! Dave got his usual shepherd’s pie, which he loved.
Easy run: 3.75 miles
I met Anna for a run on the trail near me. I was really excited because I hadn’t run with her since the JASR Half Marathon. We’ve chatted on email since then, but I wanted to apologize in person for being such a cranky pants during the race! It was still cold at 29 degrees but felt pretty nice. I’m going to miss these cold mornings! For the record, yes, I’ve worn the same tights for every run this past week. I had all my cold-weather tights put away and only wanted to take one back out when the cold weather hit.
Afterwards I did 14 minutes of upper body and core strength training. I kept the same tights on and just changed into a new bra and the tank I wore Friday turned inside out since I didn’t sweat too much.
I had the afternoon set aside for cooking. One of the things I wanted to make was lentil soup. I like lots of different types of lentil soup, but my favorite is the Syrian soup at Ali Baba, a Mediterranean restaurant near my office. I get this soup from them once or twice a week, and the owners know me by name and know I love their soup. For the past two weekends, I’ve tried to replicate the soup at home but haven’t gotten it right. Finally, last week, I told one of the owners about my failed attempts, and she told me how she makes it. I was excited to give it a go and…success! I finally got it right! Of course Ali Baba’s still tastes better–probably because they use more oil–but mine tasted pretty close. I was thrilled!
So, this week was a pretty good balance of getting in all my strength training, getting back to running, and doing other things I want to do like cooking, cleaning, and having fun with my husband. While I’m happy about that, there’s definitely a part of me that wishes I was back in my old routine and running lots of miles. But the nice thing is that I have the space to figure out a good balance with running and everything else since I’m not training right now.
This upcoming week I’ll be upping both my mileage and strength training. And…I have a race on Saturday. I registered for this 5K before I vowed not to race anymore, but at least I’ll be running it with Anna. I’m determined to have a positive attitude and enjoy this race!