Chicago Marathon Training Week #9

The average temperature during my outdoor runs last week was 88*F (31.1*C). I love running outside but the heat can really take its toll.

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My heart was beating out of my chest last Wednesday during my mile repeats. It honestly made me wonder how I’m going to run a marathon when I felt like a single mile was taking the life out of me.

Training week #9 recap:

Monday: Rest

Tuesday: 5 miles easy @ 15:33 (lots of walk breaks, calves painfully tight)

Wednesday: 1 mi w/u, 3 x 1 @ 13:22, 400m recovery, 1 mi c/d

Thursday: 4 miles easy @ 14:48

Friday: .5 mi w/u, 3 mi @ 13:42, .5 c/d

Saturday: 5 miles easy @ 15:00 on treadmill + strength

Sunday: 14 miles easy @ 15:00 on treadmill


The biggest complaint I had last week wasn’t the weather though. It really was my calf issue. It just seems to come and go at random.

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Last year I had calf issues as well but that was completely different. I had piriformis syndrome which comes with a lot of other symptoms like loss of feeling in your feet, PAINFUL hips and back soreness. I’m not experiencing any of those other symptoms at all, so I really think it’s just tight calves and nothing more.

I haven’t jacked my mileage up and I’m not going crazy with the speed work. I hydrate well. I don’t foam roll as much as I should. Maybe I just need a good ol’ deep tissue massage. If my calves don’t calm down by the end of the week I’ll schedule one.

Strength Training:

It seems like I’ve fallen into a routine of only strength training once per week. I’m honestly okay with that.

Ideally I would be doing two days per week, but I’m already feeling pretty tired with the total amount of training I’m doing so one day a week works. Come October I’ll be back to two days, but until them Chicago is the main focus! :)

My Coach:

Cecil reminds me to rest often.

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If you remember I used to go to bed around 12:30 – 1am every night but these days I’m crawling into bed around 11:30pm most nights. That extra hour makes a big difference!

Cecil is a great coach. His training philosophy is: eat well, sleep well, do your sprints.

Have you taken to the treadmill at all recently?
Can you believe it’s almost August? Chicago is almost here!!! hah!

Fun Runner Survey!

Happy Tuesday!

Yesterday was my rest day so I shot a little running survey video after work. I hope you like it!

Questions in the video that I would love for you to answer in your own video, blog post or comment:

1. What was your first ever race like?

2. What is your favorite race ever?

3. Pace group or no pace group and why?

4. What is your dream race and why?

5. Who is your favorite runner/who motivates you?

Oh yeah, and I would looooooooove to know if you ran the mile in school and what you thought about it!

I’d also love for you to give me calf advice for the millionth time. 

Here’s what’s going on:

On Sunday my calves felt a little bit tight before I even started running so I foam rolled the heck out of them. That helped loosen them up a lot and my long run ended up going really well. My calves felt tight for the first mile or so but after that I totally forgot I even had calves!

When I got done with the run I felt good, went through my stretching routine and then ate some delicious food.

Yesterday morning I woke up and my calves felt tight.

As I’m writing this at 11:39pm they are SERIOUSLY tight. Like, I know I could not run right now even if I wanted to because even walking feels weird.

I’m hoping this is just a combination of long run + foam rolling but IDK!!!! I’ve never had my calves feel this tight after rolling them, but to be fair I don’t roll them very often. Maybe I should?

This pic is cracking me up. THAT FACE. It’s the same look I give when I’m about to start foam rolling.

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Cute cats aside, do you ever get super sore after foam rolling your calves?
What did you think of running the mile in gym class?

Running, House Hunting, New Trends!

Hey there! I had such a great weekend and have so much to tell you about!

1. Running: 

Both of my runs this weekend went super well! I ran out of clean running clothes on Sunday though and had to wear my racing singlet :).

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I haven’t worn this in such a long time and it felt good to put it on again.

During the summer months I sometimes forget that races even exist! I need to pick a September race so that I can knock the racing cobwebs off before Chicago. I’d love to run the Chicago Half but the timing isn’t great for me… we’ll see!

Long runs are starting to feel really natural. During the first few weeks of the training plan they felt sort of forced, but now I feel like a distance runner again :).

Oh this run is going to take me 2.5 hours? Okay, no big deal. #ShitMarathonersSay (More tomorrow in my training recap!)

2. Work Life: 

Friday afternoon my team from work and I finally went to South Beach Room Escape!

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We were supposed to go a few weeks ago but had to reschedule. It was well worth the wait – so much fun!

Our scenario was that we were visiting our Aunt at an insane asylum and got locked in a room. We had 60 minutes to figure out the riddles and puzzles to escape or the doctors would perform experiments on us.

It took us a few minutes but we eventually got into a groove and were THISCLOSE to making it out of the room. With about six minutes to go we were down to the final riddle and thought we had it in the bag – but we got stuck. We were in the hardest escape room – it only has a 20% success rate – so the fact that we made it right to the end felt like an accomplishment! :)

3. House Hunting:  

Saturday Adam and I were condo hunting. We didn’t find the one but we did get really close. We know which condo building we want to be in, and there are a few units that we really, really like.

I took a few pics but I feel weird about showing you the inside of a place that we don’t own. However, I can show you the views from the condos! Adam likes the units that have a river view like this (taken from one of the balconies):

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The river view is absolutely gorgeous. I love it too, but you know I’m obsessed with the beach so I’m a big fan of the ocean view units.

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Okay, so it’s not like you can see the ocean right outside your balcony like you can with the river, but you can see it off in the distance and that is EVERYTHING to me. I looooooove it. Now we have to determine who gets the view they want :). Really, there probably isn’t a loser in this situation since both are pretty great!

For what it’s worth Cecil says he likes the ocean view :).

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4. Pokemon: 

We did a lot of Pokemon hunting at the beach this weekend!

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Adam’s favorite Pokemon is the Krabby:

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And of course my favorite is the Meowth :). I re-named him Peanut since that is one of my (many) nicknames for Cecil!

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5. Shopping: 

On Saturday I went shopping with my mom. I’m currently on the hunt for the perfect peach nail polish, one that is not too pink and not too orange. I tried a couple on in the store and later realized I was walking around like this:

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It’s a new trend :).

But seriously, if you know of the perfect peach nail polish please let me know!!!

That was my big weekend, I hope you had a great weekend too!

Current favorite nail polish color?
Have you been to an escape room?
Best thing about your weekend?

It’s FRIDAY! :)

Thank you for the helpful comments on first time home buying! Adam and I are going to see a few properties on Saturday :).

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Last night’s run was pretty great. It was brutally hot but I had no calf issues at all. I just don’t understand it since I do the same stretches every single day, I hydrate all the time… my routine hardly ever changes. Strange!

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^ Grateful for a run with happy calves!

I have to tell you the beach is an amazing place to catch Pokémon! :)

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I am mastering the art of catching Pokies without breaking stride. This really only works on low CP Pokies and you still have to slow down to aim, but during an easy run it’s all good!

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I also caught a bunch of little guys during my cool down walk!

I’ve been pretty committed to doing proper cool down walks this marathon training cycle and they have done me so much good. I love having a few minutes to just slow everything down. I used to run straight to my car, jump in and stress about still having to make/eat dinner, shower, spend time with Adam and make sure Cecil gets playtime/exercise. Now I take a few minutes to chill out.

My walks are only maybe five minutes long, but that’s just enough time for me to feel like I’m getting off the treadmill of life! It sounds corny but it really works for me.

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^ Look at these cuties!

Every Poké Stop along the beach seems to have a lure attached 24/7. It’s a goldmine!

If you’re playing Pokémon too I hope you level up big time this weekend!

Any exciting plans for the weekend?!
Fellow Poké players, which team are you on? 
I’m Team Mystic. 

5 Running AND Life Updates!

Hi there! How’s it going?

Today I thought I’d just update you on some random things going on over here — and hopefully I can get some of your advice too! :)

1. Yesterday’s run sucked. My calves were so tight that I had to stop running every 5-6 minutes to stretch them out. They never loosened up. WTF. I seriously can’t figure out why one day they can be perfectly fine and the next they are so tight!

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I am going to buy some salt pills but I don’t feel certain that they will help. My calves don’t cramp up, they’re just tight and the tightness is there right from the beginning.

2. I love this OGX coconut milk anti-breakage serum for hair. I’ve never been a fan of the OGX brand. Their shampoo and conditioner makes my hair feel really dry. However, B recommended I give this serum a try since they don’t test on animals…and I really like it!

It makes my hair feel smooth and healthy even at the ends despite the fact that I am in need of a trim!

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3. Fact: a doggie visiting your office will boost happiness by 100%. This little girl came for a visit yesterday. Isn’t she just adorable? Now if only someone would bring a kitten by for a visit because that would boost my personal happiness levels by 200%.

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4. Saw this on Pinterest and it cracked me up! I am definitely guilty of spotting a race photographer and trying to look either like a serious/determined/focused runner or a really, really happy runner! Usually my true feelings are somewhere in the middle of those two :).

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5. Shopping for a house/condo is so time consuming. I have two different apps that keep me updated on properties… and I’m constantly looking at KITCHENS. Adam and I have differing opinions on what layout constitutes an acceptable kitchen.

I like the ones where the kitchen is separated from the living room by a counter/bar like this:

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Adam hates the counter thing. He says, “I don’t want to vault over the counter to get to the living room.” (#dramatic)

He wants an open kitchen layout with an island in the middle like our apartment currently has (which I don’t like), or he wants a kitchen that’s totally off on its own (which is virtually impossible to find).

Cecil may need to be the deciding vote. I should go butter him up with some treats …

Talk to you again soon!

Homeowners, what tips do you have for buying your first place?
Favorite hair care brands?