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Monday, June 26, 2017

berlin marathon training, week 3: that time when all your runs go well!

Solid week of training! Almost a quarter of the way there...


5.2 mi Speedwork / 8:38 pace
Lower Body Strength

The company gym isn't too hopping after work... also, I swear the weights are heavier than what they are labeled.

The company store sells hummus. This was $2.25 - deal! Somehow I did not eat all of this in one night...it actually lasted 6 days!


Upper Body Strength

Got my workouts in before work thanks to a busy day. We had dinner at Harvest Kitchen and it was delicious. I...already forgot what this was. I'm super great at blogging, I know. But it was a fish...not salmon, tilapia, seabass...but I can tell you that is kimchi to the right and it was a curry sauce...


7 mi Tempo / 8:22 pace

Oh look, I actually was almost spot on with my paces for a tempo run - progress! It was the longest day of the year so I made sure to get outside for this run and enjoy the beautiful weather.

I enjoyed this after. Some man threw me some shade as I ate this in the parking lot. Whatever man, I didn't want to share with you anyway.

I walked for a while after since it was nice out, and you know, the freaking step challenge at work is still going on. I also stumbled upon the train station where several strangers asked me where the train and train tracks are. You are reading the blog of the worst undercover train conductor ever apparently.



This is not spinning. This was walking at lunch. Once again, this step challenge...

Ok, so Spinning in all seriousness, was awesome. First ever full-hour (ok, 50 minute) Spinning class and it was great. I was drenched in sweat within 5 minutes and it was rather tough. The theme of the class was Road Trip Throwback...and you know when it started off with City of Blinding Lights I just wanted to weep so that was a good start. One of the cool parts is that you are ranked versus everyone else in the class throughout the class... let's just say I have some room for improvement.

I still didn't have enough steps. So I saw a nice sunset.



Ollie has this interesting habit of watching the news every morning. My cat, the Grandpa Cat.

I was really hungry all day and knowing I had the long run the next day..snacking happened. These guys were great. I finished the bag in about 3 minutes.


17 mi Long  / 9:03 pace
Lower Body Strength

Oh, you're thinking, why the heck is she running 17 miles during her 3rd week of Marathon training? You know, I don't know, but I'm going to stick to this book - their novice plan got me a pretty decent finish with Milan so I'm just doing their normal plan, OK?!

This was a really good run. I don't have any pictures, that's how serious I was about it this time. I also did not stop my watch at any point during the run. Newsflash: I typically stop my watch to like...drink water, have a gel, take a selfie, not die, you know, the usual... But this time I decided to whip out some self-control and it paid off.

My goal was a 9:08 pace, and I was pleased with the 9:03. I felt really great from mile 9 on. 

Yes, I lifted after. Mostly inspired after watching an interview with Jordan Hasay and how lifting after those hard long runs really takes training to the next level. Sure I'm not coming in 3rd in Boston like her but hey, worth a shot to switch up the routine.


Upper Body Strength

Things they don't tell you about rooftop yoga: There are bees. And your yoga mat may fly away. Luckily I was not stung and no one's mats flew away and it was an overall gorgeous day for some yoga!

And for baseball too.

And for eating an entire pizza (I mean it was small, but...it was gone within minutes).

Overall a solid week of training - next up Week 4, which will feature a probably rather amusing return to the lovely altitude of Flagstaff, Arizona for a few days!

Monday, June 19, 2017

berlin marathon training, week 2: humidity, we meet again

Training in the summer has its drawbacks...


Upper Body Strength

Apparently I did not take any pictures this day. 


5 mi Speedwork / 8:33 pace
Lower Body Strength

Thankfully my company gym at my new workplace is free! So I like to workout after work in order to avoid traffic and it keeps me eating smart throughout the day (otherwise...stomach issues during a run). Felt pretty good during this one!


7 mi / 9:03 pace
Upper Body Strength

Looks nice, right? Wrong.

I worked from home this day due to many interviews (all on the phone) so I was able to get outside for my planned tempo run before work. It was supposed to be 1 mi warm up, 5 mi at tempo, and 1 mi cool down but uh, the humidity, lower body strength and other body things thought otherwise. Got the miles in though.

For Milan, I gave up fish in addition to meat. Needless to say, I am not doing that again. Sweet potatoes, salmon and tuna (not pictured) have been top of mind for me. 


Spinning / Yoga class

Roasted Vegetable Bowl from Cultivate in Chagrin Falls.

Work really has some good local health and wellness hook ups. Every Thursday we can go to a local spinning studio for a free class after work. I went to it this week, and it turns out the hour is split - first half hour is spinning (not as easy as it appears..) and then the last half hour is whatever the instructor wants - this time it was yoga!

Someone's Jeni's. Not mine obviously.

And there's a step challenge at work, so I walked around Chagrin Falls and the surrounding neighborhoods for a bit - it was a nice summer evening!


Lower Body Strength
Hot Yoga

I decided to walk to work (not work in the suburbs but another one of our locations near downtown) on Friday. This was...hot. I wore long jeans and it was a regret once I hit the bridge. 2 miles later I arrived in full on sweat. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Also hit up Hot Yoga after work - my goal is to go to Yoga at least once per week this training cycle! I say this every time but I'm feeling good about following through with this. 



Ollie takes Rest Days very seriously.

Walked to West Side Market for some produce per usual.

Had a healthy lunch. Then.. a second lunch at a birthday party. Looking back, I didn't eat much during the week..and I legitimately was just hungry all throughout the day...(drank water every time I was hungry and nope..even hungrier)

Ohio City Pasta - Lemon Basil noodles just with Garlic olive oil. So. Good. I love my pasta dinners the night before a long run!


15 mi run / 9:13 avg
(5 mi pre-race 9:03 pace, 10 mi race 9:18 pace)

The sun rise...

Was gorgeous!

So I signed up for a 10 mile race this day... and I had 15 scheduled for my long run. I was very torn about getting 5 in before vs. after but decided to just do it before so it would force me to take the race easy. Needless to say, that technique worked.

My goal pace was 9:08 for 15 so I'm content with averaging at 9:13 considering the heat.

I pretty much felt death hit around mile 3 of the 10 mile race. I regret not having a gel before the race to refuel from my first run. Stopped at every aid station for both water and gatorade, and walked quite a bit. But survived! (though I must say I've never felt so terrible those few minutes after crossing the finish line..) 

Refueled Ohio-style with fish and pierogis. Not pictured: more pierogis at dinner. 

Overall, not a bad week. Going have to learn how to make humidity work for me here.. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

berlin marathon training, week 1: californiaaaaa!

16 weeks until...

Yeah for International Marathons! Nothing keeps you accountable like already having the airfare and AirBNB booked, right?  

Goals for this race... just to PR would be lovely (Milan was 3:49), but under a 3:40 would be awesome! To qualify for Boston is to finish under 3:35...but trying to keep myself realistic here..

Fortunately, I was able to start my first week of training in California for work! I think this could have been a good excuse to not start training but let's be honest, the weather in California is pretty ideal for training.

Monday (June 4th, I'm a little late with this recap!)

5.5 mi / 8:37 pace
Upper Body Strength

I was slightly concerned with staying next to Disneyland as I wasn't sure about the running path situation... (since Disney World does not have the best set up..) but I was happily surprised that I comfortably got in my speedwork around the park. I did this by effort. 

I took selfies with this but there's just no need to share that side of me right now...

Afterwards, I did upper body strength - luckily the hotel had a really good gym with decent weights, kettlebells and machines. Also, the breakfast buffet was the healthiest I've seen in awhile. I like to think it's because it was California.

I was in Anaheim for a food show since I support a Sales Team that sells to the food service industry. There was a cake challenge amongst many, many samples of food and drinks in this massive convention center.

At night we went on a boat cruise. Which featured a lot of bacon. What is with bacon wrapped everything?!


Elliptical Interval
Lower Body Strength

So... I got to the hotel gym at 5a (I did not adjust to West Coast time at all this trip), and sadly learned it did not open for another hour. Came back at 6a on the dot and the only other guy there took the bike I needed...so elliptical for my cardio.. and then lower body strength too.

Then a lovely 1.5 hour drive up to Glendale. I really thought it was closer.

Ventured to the top of the soon to be old Nestle USA Headquarters building.

Um, this gym...was epic. And free for employees. Sobbing.

Later that evening, I flew to San Jose and happily discovered so many ethnic restraurants by hotel! However.. I didn't really branch out since it's been awhile since I had falafel... This is not falafel obviously, just the precursor. From Falafel Bite in Milipitas.


6.6 mi / 8:27 pace

Literally perfect weather for a run in San Jose. Was able to run to this trail from my hotel and it was glorious. Hit my goal pace for 1 of the 2 tempo miles which I did not expect for my first week.

The work day took us to Pebble Beach and the Monterey area.

Lunch was at Jonty's Vietnamese Eatery in Morgan Hill. It is literally at the train station. It was amazing. I got this tofu noodle bowl and Vietnamese iced coffee and it was fantastic. Though I think it gave me heartburn after. Whatever, worth it.

And..then.. a long drive to Fresno.. the traffic getting out San Jose was ridiculous. I was on an exit ramp for at least 20 minutes. Anyway... it was nice to see the Sierra Nevadas driving in. Fresno's food options are very..limited downtown, so I grabbed a sandwich and a local Tioga-Sequoia brew in the lobby. And watched the Cavs lose and my personal phone spontaneously combust..figuratively of course. At least the beer was good.. 



So... knowing how my next two days were going to go, decided to take this day as a rest day. See more info on Kings Canyon below if you want to see more. I will say we got lunch at this lodge and it was OK. The fish tacos were just two tacos...like really, guys?  Correct portion sizes?

Dinner was SWEET TOMATOES! Apparently we went to this one specifically after Yosemite, Sarah, if you are reading?! I ate at 4:30p with all of my elderly friends. Sleep deprivation was my other friend.


Yosemite Hike ~16-20 miles

More pictures a few posts below this one...

View from the top!

My favorite picture from Mirror Lake that I didn't post :)


12 mi / 9:00 pace

Goal was a 9:23 pace and this 9:00 was easy..and probably would have been faster if I didn't take pictures every 10 minutes...

When the first guy that passes you on your first long run of training is wearing a Berlin Marathon shirt... #itsasign

Oh yeah the selfies happened.

The weather, once again, was perfect. So happy the bridge wasn't shrouded in fog. Also have never seen this many runners in my life outside of race in a city...! So cool.

Lunch in Chinatown at Muracci's Japanese Curry and Grill. Tofu and vegetable curry. Was not impressed.

Chinatown itself was pretty neat.

Dinner was at Pacific Catch in the Marina District. Then I was impressed.

Headed back to San Jose, grabbed some snacks and just one local beer to enjoy before heading out the next morning. This was delicious!



I've got a pretty good streak of picking the right side of the plane on when coming back into Cleveland.

Overall, a very good first week of training! My record number of steps for a week was around 150k... needless to say, I shattered that. Strangely enough, I was never really sore (and I'm typing this the Tuesday after).. so that's .. interesting. More to come next week of course!