2015 Fitness Goals

Who says New Years resolutions are for January 1st? They totally still count the first week of February, right? 😛

One thing I have always done a pretty good job of on this blog is setting goals and keeping myself accountable for them. In 2014, I started the year off by giving myself a budget, which was a good way for me to change my spending habits while I was working at my internship. The year before, I made goals to run a 5k and run 25 miles in a month at least once during 2013. I actually ended up running two 10k’s and was registered for my first half marathon by the end of the year.

It’s nice to be able to look back and track progress on your goals…and it’s even nicer to be able to say you beat your goals. 😉

For the past month, I have thought good and hard about my fitness goals for the year…and I have decided I don’t want to be over ambitious, or over specific. I’m keeping it to 2 goals that I think are challenging, achievable, and measurable: Continue reading

Fitness Friday – 10K Edition!

Three posts in 1 week, look at me go!

I’ve VERY excited about what I’m sharing today! It’s been in the making for a while and a little over a week ago I finally made the plunge and registered…

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For my first 10K!

At the beginning of this year, I set a few fitness goals for myself. They were pretty simple ones, like registering to run a 5K and running 25 miles in one month. I ran my first 5K in March, and as long as I run 3.5+ miles tomorrow, my second goal will be realized!

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Kinda funny that I’ve only gone for 6 runs this month and I’m set to have my best mileage ever!

As some of you know, my boyfriend and I broke up a little over two months ago.  Soon after, I suppose in what can be considered a coping mechanism, I began making a habit of going on long Saturday morning runs followed by a trip to the Farmer’s Market. For the last 3 years, I’ve pretty much regularly run 2-3 miles, only exceeding 3 miles a handful of times…But when I started running on Saturday mornings, I realized I could extend that distance, since I wasn’t held back by time like I usually am when I go for runs on my lunch break.

On August 1st, my furthest ever run was 3.4 miles. I was already contemplating running the 10k, but wanted to play it by ear…so I started running. But what started off as “let’s see if I can run 3.4 again” turned into one of my best runs ever…..

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Not just in the distance, but check out my split times! I have been doing much better at pacing myself for my first mile and saving my energy for the end. I think that has been key in increasing my distance.

After this run, I went to New York for a week and decided to see how my workouts went there before making a decision about the 10K. I tried to work out when I was there and stayed somewhat active…and when I came back, I kept up with the long Saturday morning runs:

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I decided to go for it and create a loose training plan for the 10K on September 8th. Because I decided to register only 3 weeks before the race, I knew I’d have a challenge ahead of me, increasing from 4 miles to 6.2 miles in such a short amount of time. My training schedule looked something like this:

Week 1: two 3-4 mile runs during the week, 4.75 mi run on Saturday

Week 2: two 3-4 mile runs during the week, 5.25 mi run on Saturday

Week 3: two 3-4 mile runs during the week, 6.2 mi run on Sunday

Seems kind of quick, right? I asked a few friends, who all assured me I can totally do it. So I’m doin it!

Of course, I haven’t really stuck with my plan… instead of two short runs during the week, I’ve just been running twice a week and increasing my mileage by at least .25 every time I run. I went from 4 miles to 4.85 over the course of a week! I’ve also been keeping my pace very slow, I usually average slower than 9:30 min miles.

In addition to my runs, I’ve been keeping up with “cross training” AKA sorority girl elliptical + abs workouts. I also played kickball with my cast. I know I know, bad Katie…I didn’t actually play in the field, I just kicked and ran! I think sprinting around the bases has actually improved my running form 🙂

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The Straw-ber-ritas help too 🙂

By the way, my cast came off on Wednesday and my orthopedist said that my bone healed beautifully!!! I was extremely nervous, given my history of low bone density and how long it took last year’s break to heal. But I am extremely thankful that my calcium regimen served me well this time around! With the help of the above thumb brace, I may have even played dodgeball last night….shhh don’t tell my doctor 😉

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Last summer, I really found myself in a funk when I broke my hand. This time around, without that boyfriend support system, I was really worried that would happen again…but thanks to a consistent work out “regimen” I stayed the same happy and perky Katie that I usually am. Yay exercise!

Happy Labor Day weekend everyone! If you have Monday off like me, I’m sure it will be a good one 🙂

What’s the longest race you’ve done? Did you follow a training plan?

Do you find that your happiness + activity level are linked?

Fitness Friday

Text with both hands. Use scissors. Cut food in a straight line. Play dodgeball.

Run 4 miles. Hold a long ass plank. Learn to play (and win!) beer pong left handed.

Despite my injury, I’ve been trying to focus on things that I can do, instead of things that I can’t.

Last summer, I had a really hard time trying to get around with my broken hand, and my frustration at not being able to do the simplest tasks really took a toll on me. I stopped working out almost altogether, was generally unhappy and feeling hopeless, and mysteriously dropped 5 pounds.

It helped that I had a support system (boyfriend) last summer. This time, I didn’t have someone to insist on taking me to the ER right away. I didn’t have someone to make sure my arm was elevated while I slept. I have to drag my bike up my stairs all by my damn self. And while that realization really crushed me when I broke another bone last week, I had another thought that brought me back to reality: I’m the only person who can control my happiness.

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thank god for BFFLs

So I’ve turned my focus to something that I can control, something that lets me set goals and achieve them: fitness! And more specifically, running. We had a break in the 90-100 degree days and dropped into the high 80’s this week, finally allowing for some bearable lunchtime running weather.

On Saturday morning, I went on my usual run and did a pretty speedy (for me) 5K: finished in 28:44, which is a 9:15 min/mile pace.

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It was pretty hot early in the week, so I opted for the sorority girl workout I mentioned on Wednesday: elliptical and abs allllll the way.

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[kickball was definitely more about fun than fitness this week :-P]

I usually skip workouts on Wednesdays and Thursdays because I have kickball on Wednesdays (which is a good workout! I’m guaranteed at least 3 at bats and, thus, 3 sprints to first base) and dodgeball on Thursdays (ok, not really an intense workout), but since I wasn’t going to be able to play dodgeball last night and the high was only in the mid 80’s, I decided to go for a run at lunch.

When I run, I usually hate it the entire time. I am constantly calculating how far I’ve gone and, more importantly, how far I have left, and telling myself things like “OK, I’m 1/5 of the way done…just 4 more times!” I also usually have a distance in mind before I run.

On Thursday, I knew I wanted to go at least 3 miles, but I wasn’t sure how much further I was going to push myself. The furthest I had ever ran was 3.4 miles, and I felt like I was gonna die when I did that. So I decided to play it by ear.

To my surprise, I felt great during my entire run. I feel like I finally experienced that runner’s high that everyone talks about. I started thinking, “oh my god, maybe I can make it to 4 miles…just maybe!” I also started off very slowly and gradually increased my speed, just like you’re supposed to.

This is probably the main reason why I could keep going for .6 miles further than my previous furthest run…

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Yep! I made it to 4 miles!

I couldn’t believe it, and I felt so empowered for pushing through and achieving something I previously thought impossible. Maybe a 10K is in my future!

I was so happy that I was inspired to sign up today for the Color Run happening in Sacramento tomorrow. 5k is no sweat to me anymore 😉

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Super excited to participate in this. I don’t even care if I run the whole thing, it’s going to be a blast!

Have a great weekend!

Getting Back on Track After 2 Long Weekends

To say I’ve had an out of the ordinary couple of weeks/weekends would be an understatement!

Going to Utah for a weekend definitely threw off my mojo, even if we were eating healthy and exercising most of the weekend. I struggled to get back into the swing of things at work last week, and did one workout on Tuesday that put me out of commission for several days.

Fast forward past dodgeball playoffs on Thursday…

Oh hay look, it’s the girls of our team. Aren’t we sassy?

Ahem, moving on… 🙂

Memorial Day weekend was of course full of drinks and I had some great food in San Francisco. I did get in a few walks and bike rides, but I have felt pretty sluggish these past few days at work. So yesterday instead of working I put together a rough food and exercise plan for the week!

Yes…I’m posting my weekly plan on Wednesday. Whatevaaaaa, I do what I want.

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t like meal planning. Weekend food prep is awesome, since it means I have easy ingredients available for any meal I want. But I don’t like sticking to a set meal plan because I tend to like eating what I want when I want it. Giving in to food cravings is the only way to stifle them, friends!

So here’s what I came up with as far as food goes. The important part was planning lunches, because I’m hoping to work out most days at lunch this week, so I need to have something I can prep in the morning or night before.

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{as far as breakfast goes…I have enough Muesli Fusion and Hemp Protein Muffins to last me the week!}

Tuesday: Lunch – rice/avocado/turkey sausage. Dinner – some kind of veggie sandwich
Wednesday: Lunch – rice/avocado/veggies/tortilla. Dinner – sprouted whole grain pasta {from the BLEND swag bag, of course} & mom’s meat sauce!
Thursday: Lunch– sausage & pepper sandwich. Dinner– chicken + oven fries + veggies from Farmer’s Market
Friday: Lunch– wing it…aka probably frozen burrito. DinnerConcerts in the Park…aka probably food trucks & beer.

I’m trying to stay away from dairy and alcohol {already botched the alcohol part, since I had to try a few sips of T-Man’s wine last night. Oops!} this week because I noticed dairy was giving me digestive issues last week. And wouldn’t we all be better off drinking less?

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So far, so good on Tuesday’s meals! I devoured this veggie sandwich with roasted bell peppers, zucchini and hummus last night. Not pictured is the corn on the cob (!!!) I had on the side. I’m sooo excited for corn season!

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One of my new favorite breakfasts: Overnight oats with Muesli Fusion An-Ox, unsweetened plain almond milk, and chia seeds. The An-Ox blend includes goji berries, cacao nibs, dried bluebs, and walnuts. It has so much texture and no added sugar…perfect for this lazy girl who doesn’t want to have to add a bunch of ingredients herself ;-).

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Normally, I work out 3 times per week and have dodgeball on Thursdays. This week, we don’t have dodgeball so I’m going to aim for 4 workouts in 4 days, taking care not to overdo it or do the same thing two days in a row.

Tuesday: Easy workout to ease my way back into things- elliptical + abs!
Wednesday: The high temp is only 84 [as opposed to 90 and 97 Thursday and Friday] so I will try for my first run in 2 weeks.
Thursday: Some kind of gym workout! Last week I tried Christina’s Bikini Season Workout and it kicked my butt – I was sore for like 3 days afterward and I only made it 1.5 times through the workout! I want to incorporate more CrossFit-type stuff (burpees, squats, mountain climbers, etc) into my routine because it’s such good cardio AND muscular training.
Friday: Rest if I’m sore, easy elliptical + abs again if I’m not!

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Workouts have been extra bright with my pink shoelaces from Becky 🙂

This is the workout I tried last week {minus the kettle bells, since my gym doesn’t have them} that totally kicked my butt…in the best way possible!

And this is how I looked after going through the routine…ONCE. {took me about 10 minutes}

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If you can’t tell, that is fear in my eyes of what would happen were I to actually do that workout over and over for 40 minutes. I would prooobably barf. Clearly, given how out of shape I felt while doing this workout, I need to expand my workouts beyond running and elliptical/abs/weight lifting!

I’m actually proud to announce that during my “easy workout” yesterday, I followed up my 25 mins of elliptical intervals by randomly doing a 1 min 30 sec plank! That’s the longest I’ve ever done, and 30 seconds closer to my New Years Resolution of holding a 2 minute plank! Holla.

So on that note, I’m off to go get changed for lunch and my run! It’s only 73 degrees outside now…I don’t think I’ll be getting many runs in in comings weeks, as the high isn’t supposed to dip back below 90 for at least 10 days. Yikes!

Do you plan out your workouts for the week?

How do you get back into the swing of things after a long weekend?

Aaand another question: any recommendations of similar workouts to the one above?