Mentally struggling…but KILLED IT!

Last nights run was AMAZING!  I have had a bit of trouble the last few days running because well, Saturday, Dare and I ran to my parents house and somehow…I stepped wrong, rolled my ankle and now I am babying it just a little.  Now, to some this kind of thing is a big deal to me…it happens.  I severely sprained my ankle doing a round-off back handspring when I was in 8th grade.  Since then, just the slightest wrong movement and it rolls.  So it is sore and just the slightest bit swollen but nothing I can’t work with.  Anyway, we were only 1.5 into a short 4 miles when this happened…so I iced it at my parents for a little bit and then we ran home.  Yes, I ran on a freshly rolled ankle.  It was uncomfortable but that’s about it.

Back to last night…..another set of speed interval training.  This is straight from Megs training for me.  My schedule called for 3 miles and hers was 45 minutes so I knew I would be long on mileage but I am not too concerned with the little extra.  After a short warm up, Dare took off at his own super teen speed and planned to meet me when we hit close to 45 minutes.  For the first 30 minutes there were sections of high intensity broken up with 1 min recovery run, and the last 15 was shorter segments of high intensity with 1 min recovery.  My ankle was taped and I thought I was mentally ready for this.  But I wasn’t.  This run taught me a lot about myself.
First, I am capable of much more than I let myself believe.  I think we all are really.  Our mind quits long before our bodies are ready too.  I was about halfway done with the first 30 minute segment and was ready to “cheat”.  I was wanting to skip a faster segment and just run it at a normal pace so that I could recover a bit more.  I almost did too.  But, when my Garmin beeped that the minute of recovery pace was over, I ran.  Hard.  I was tired but if I am going to get stronger I have to stop making excuses and run!

Second, I can mentally overcome obstacles.  My mind quit last night.  I was DONE!  But I had to start thinking of what all this is for to begin with.  I thought of a similar run last week that I really struggled with.  I thought of the months that I couldn’t run.  I thought of the kid that was out there running his ass off ahead of me.  I thought of my Irun4 buddy Tiernan!  And I thought about how if I got through a couple more minutes of hard stuff, I could rest a little bit and eventually it would all be over!

Runs like this used to be easy…ok, not easy but easier.  I used to run much more than I do now and so it wasn’t as daunting.  I could push myself and be ok with it.  Now that I am just starting to get back into these harder runs, I have to build my mental strength back up.  I know I am capable, just convincing myself of that mid-run is hard sometimes.  So what made this so AMAZING??
I finished, each and every repeat!!  I didn’t fall victim to my mind.  I pushed through the doubt and finished!  Also, I did it 30 sec per mile faster than a very similar workout last week!  Improvements are being made, I didn’t need as slow of a recovery period as last week.  Also, last week I would walk a lot during the recovery period.  Last night I didn’t let that happen.
So I won that run…I straight up killed it!  Now if I can just make it past this snow storm we are having right now I think I will be ok!

View from my office!

~HRM~
#irun4tiernan      

When was your last run that almost broke you?

What did you to to recover?

My Favorite Workout Partner

Week 1 of my new plan has been pretty great so far.  I have had an opportunity to really push myself and see how strong weak I really am.  I have still been able to stick to my running plan also.  Which means I have ran once this week and tonight will be run #2!!!  Tuesdays run was GREAT!  It was the first time in a few days we could run down the sidewalk without being on snow the entire time.  Dare (my nickname for my oldest son) and I ran together…kind of.

Stretching before his county championship run

For those of you that have been reading for awhile you know he is super speedy, for those of you that are just starting.  You will read plenty about this kid.  He is 13, super awesome and a GREAT runner.  He has ran for the last 3 years in cross country and track.  He is currently our county champion for xc and runs an easy sub 20 5K.  He is just running “with” me to get in shape for track and he is the best running pal I have.  Having his fast rear ahead of me always makes me push just a little harder!!  🙂
So back to our run, we had a 30 min run scheduled, so we started together and finished together.  We were running intervals.  <–Hence the "with" in regards to Dare.  We did a total of 10 fast paced, really push it, hard segments followed by a short stint of recovery.  It made for a GREAT evening.

He was in the middle of saying, “I’m cold!”

 The weather was perfect (for January in Michigan) at 30°ish. When we got back to the house we were both ready to foam roll and warm up!
Last night I had a pretty great workout again!  I am a lucky gal…this week is going pretty great!  I was a little sore going into last nights workout but as anyone knows…that happens.  So I pushed and got it done.  Dare did at one point tell me that Megs is trying to torture me with all these workouts!  I had to laugh!  He is so dedicated but knows how much I do not cross or strength train.  I do however like the feeling of getting stronger.  I know it is going to happen and I am ready to put in the work!

5 sets…DONE!  My hand looks abnormally huge!

In the meantime I am becoming addicted to Quest Bars…..mmmmmmmm.  I had to have something in-between work and getting my workout in and I have an hour commute.  So I get to snack on yummy stuff while driving!

Vanilla Almond Crunch for the win!

Then of course, I was running low on time so I had to make a quick, just for me dinner.  It was pretty darn yummy!

96/4 Beef patty with fried egg and asparagus…I promise they go good together!

I love having dinner as a family every night…it is something I look forward too so nights that I don’t get too.  I am kind of bummed but sometimes our schedules just are a little too hectic!  Last night it was due to Dare and I doing our workouts and the guy and my middle boy J doing theirs at different times.  My little lady took the night off of working out, she hung out on her ipod watching YouTube.  She said she is going to definitely workout again tonight though!

~HRM~
#irun4tiernan

Do you have a favorite workout partner?  

Favorite protein bar?

Family dinners…yay or nay?

New Fitness Program and Goals to go with it!

Starting a new journey is always fun, scary, intimidating, exciting and question filled.  I am on one of those journeys.  I also added a new chapter to it started SUNDAY!!!!  I am going to be happy about sharing my new adventures with you guys as I go down this path.  I am going to be working with Meg on getting myself in the best shape possible.  Both nutritionally and physically.
Last week, I did a small fitness test so we can have my starting numbers to compare to in a couple of months.  I am really excited to get further into her plan and see what it does for me!  It is intense and fun.  <–Also something I need!

Megs business

I am obviously going to be documenting my journey because well, that’s what we all do on here right?  So let me be real and let you all know what my goals are.  First and foremost, run the Tear Drop Half Marathon in Chatsworth, GA on April 30.  I have not run a half marathon on my own and try to PR in over a year.  The last 3 have went kind of like this:  March 2015-pace friends, April 2015 run injured (not smart), and October 2015-pace friend.  So I haven’t really ran one for me in a long time.  This next one isn’t really for me either.  I am a part of the I Run 4 program, and run for a young man that lives down in GA.  I am hoping to be able to meet him and this half is all for him!!!  He cannot run so I am hoping to PR for him in his home state!  If you don’t know about IR4, go check it out!  It is amazing and gives me the motivation I need to get moving when I am not really feeling it.

Now, to run better and faster.  I need to be stronger and more fit!  I have been running and things are going really well for me.  I am having success with each run.  But I knew that strength training has always been a huge hurdle for me.  Along with eating correctly.  I work in an office…some days its easier to just go grab something.  <–not the healthiest option!  This is where Megs comes into my life.  I reached out to her a couple of weeks ago to see if she would help me.  She has given me and amazing plan and I am now in full swing.  She has me on a specific meal and workout plan.  6 out of 7 days for workouts with some cardio workouts included.  The really cool part is her plan works well with my running.  Nothing that won't work cohesively with my half plan is in it at all!!
Secondly, I want to shed a few pounds I have put on since becoming injured.  I don’t want to drop a ton of weight but a little will be ok with me.  I am not necessarily worried about the number on the scale, but if my clothes fit differently I will be happy.  🙂
On Sunday I started my meal plan which is actually pretty great.  I am removing certain things like caffeine which I have struggled with.  I have had to have two small cups of coffee since I started this to keep my head at ease.  Mind you these are two cups of black coffee.  I normally use cream and sweetener.  But no more!!

Pre-workout snack…these are seriously good

I have also started eating healthier snacks and staying away from the really gross bad for you (but taste so good) sugars.  This will sound weird but removing sugars has been easier than I thought and this morning while brushing my teeth, my toothpaste actually tasted sweet?  How quickly things change!!
Last night however was the first Meg workout!!  Let me tell you I am fit.  Not like super fit but I can easily go knock out several miles and feel great as far cardiovascular conditioning.  When it comes to strength I am a pure wimp!  So at the end of her workout that mind you included every athletes fav:  burpees!  I was to say the least tired but it felt amazing!!!  I had to keep pushing myself as my body was feeling weaker the more of each exercise I did.  I persevered pushed through and made it all the way through the circuit!  This is how I felt:

Post workout…see how red my cheeks are?!

I am so happy with everything so far and know I have someone that is going to work with me and my running.  I am ready to keep pushing through and push myself into places I didn’t know was possible to get to anymore.  Just because I will be 33 on the 27th doesn’t mean I can’t be in the best shape ever!!

~HRM~
#irun4Tiernan

What is your least favorite type of strength training?
Favorite nutrition bar?

Weekend Wrap-up!

Friday:
Since I am slowly working myself back into running I am taking things very easy.  So Fridays run was a super slow, nice and easy 2 miles.  It was gorgeous out!  The ground was dry but I was snowing just a little!  It made the air crisp and the run fabulous!  I love to run in the cooler weather but when it gets closer to 20° or below…then I start to get a little cold.

This pic does it no justice!
Saturday:
I got out and ran around 8 and it was perfect!  The sun was shining and the weather was the perfect temperature!  I only ran 3.5 miles but I got stuff done.  I went to the ATM, ran to the local community center to sign up for Mondays spin class and got my workout in all at once!  Love being able to multi-task. 
After my run a friend and I headed to the running store and she got a couple new pairs of shoes while I resisted all temptation!!  Ok, that’s a lie…I did get a few packs of Tailwind to try out.
For dinner I was craving avocado and had D help me make some avocado toast with egg and sriracha!  He loved it!
So so so good!
Sunday:
Ok.  Super Bowl 50.  I made it to halftime.  That’s it!  Couldn’t do it anymore!  I am too old/wake up too early for that biz!  Even though I didn’t watch the whole game that doesn’t mean I didn’t take part in some great food!  The guy and I had a pretty good spread of food and the kids were eating like crazy!  My favorite part was the bruschetta.  It is probably one of my favorite snacks of all time and I make it as often as possible.
Doesn’t get much better than that!
My Week:
Monday: 45 min spin and strength training
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: 1.46 easy miles
Thursday: rest
Friday: 2 easy miles
Saturday: 3.5 easy miles
Sunday: rest
I know it doesn’t seem like much but when you have fought injury for almost a year.  You are going to take things slow easy and really not over due it.  I am giving my body plenty of time to adjust and so far so good!  🙂
~HRM~
#irunfortiernan
How was your weekend? 
Favorite snack you make?

Suck it up sweetheart, life IS hard!

Making decisions in life is always hard.  Regardless of what its about.  Work, life, health, fitness, family…they are all important in there own way.

I have a lot of thoughts going through my head daily about what I want to be now that I am able to be my own person.  I want to grow, learn, teach, admire and love more than I ever have before. To do these things I also need to be able to relax and be the best me I can be!  This is where I struggle. 
I need this….every time I workout!
Things are about to get real with this post so be prepared!!  🙂
In the last year I have…been injured, divorced, moved towns, changed positions at work, figured out how to be a single mom and learned to be happy.  Now these are mostly very stressful things that I have let negatively impact my life.  I have gained weight…about 7 pounds over the year.  May not sound like much but on a 5’3″ frame I can tell.  I am by no means overweight but I am not where I want to be.  This also has changed my running.  Due to being injured and gaining weight I struggle.  Not with the runs themselves, although they are harder than they used to be based off of loss of fitness but with my overall motivation.  So I am going to start making myself work a little harder, hold my head up a little higher and really fight for what I want with my health and fitness.
Here is my plan and I need you guys to help hold my ass accountable!  OK??? OK!!
Stop making excuses.  I do this with a lot of things in my life (mostly cross training).  I am in the process of hiring a personal dietitian and personal trainer to help whip my booty in shape!  She will hold me accountable and give me a step by step guide to what I need to do.  Apparently, I just need someone to boss me around ;). 
My last good race…June 2015
Love myself more.  As a mother of 3 amazing kiddos I am responsible for teaching them how to love themselves.  I can’t do that if I am always beating myself up!  I don’t do this in front of them but I do it nonetheless.
Their first run together 8/2014!
Blog More.  The more I blog, the more I hold myself accountable.  I don’t like knowing someone is reading all about my failures.  It can be embarrassing but also keeps me in check! 
Focus on Fun.  My kids are great at this!  They make sure they are always having fun.  Sometimes I get so serious, I forget to laugh and be silly.
Nerd fun!!
Read More.  The more I read about others success, the more I force myself to look at life.  But first I think I need to open up my favorite book a little more often…the Bible.  I lost focus and need to re-center.
So off of my soapbox for a second…went for a quick run yesterday.  The weather was not so great but I loved running in it!!  It was sleeting…YAY!  1.5 miles at 9:35 pace.  Not too bad for a gross day. 
Hope you are all having a absolutely wondering Thursday!!!!
~HRM~
#irun4tiernan
What is your favorite motivational quote?  Currently: Strength doesn’t come from what you can do.  It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.

Biggest current struggle?  Mine is my diet!

A couple weeks of crazy!

I changed jobs at work.  I changed offices.  I changed everything that was for the past two and a half years my daily  routine.  Now that I have adjusted, I can actually take some time to blog again. 

I have been continuing my running slow and with very low mileage!!  It is crazy when I look at my miles and think why shouldn’t I just run a little more!  I have missed it and love it so much and that is EXACTLY why I am not pushing it!  I want to run more….just not yet! 

I have had quite a few great runs recently!  I feel good, I don’t hurt and most importantly I am having fun!!!!  So to keep you all informed of what has happened…a few photos!

D has been running with me?  Kind of, he runs his miles…I run mine.  We start and finish together (he is just a lot faster so runs a lot more!)

Annnnnd he hates the pics! 
I had an the worlds largest apple fritter.  I didn’t eat the whole thing it sadly, wasn’t the best.

Yeah!
KK and I had a date night.

She was not impressed with me!  😉
I got a chance to run in the snow!! 
Sorry for the blur, I was running so fast!  HAHA!
The guy and kids dressed up my lab…she digs it!
She even got photo bombed!
I am now going to work on coming up with a plan to run a GREAT half at the end of April!  I need to get better in the nutrition world…times like this are killing me!
Chocolate covered coffee beans for the win!
~HRM~
#irun4tiernan
Any healthy meal suggestions?  I need some new ideas!
How much snow do you have now…if any?