Tuesday, January 31, 2017

January: Started cold ended cold

I ran 110 miles in January which I am going to go ahead and say is pretty good considering all the snow and cold.  January came in like an Ice Princess dancing with Jack Frost (first day of the year was -30 with windchills)  and is going out like a Snow Queen (we are expecting another 3-6 inches of that crazy white stuff today AND the freaking cold is back after nearly 50 degrees for three days).

Cold, snowy and not a lot of sun.
We did have some interludes with sunshine and minimal wind, but if I had to recap January I would say "Cold and windy, thank you very much".

It's been cold with very minimal gorgeous type winter days since the beginning of December so I am pretty much over it. Although on the bright side.. all this lovely snow we have in piles everywhere will help grow the grass in the spring to feed the cows.

I kept up well with the yoga and strength training for January and am happy with how that went although I admit I probably concentrated more on upper body than lower.

Training is going good, but speedwork has been minimal with the road conditions and the extreme cold temps.  I am okay with that and have no big time goals for my half marathon in March.

I am giving myself an "A" for the month for getting out in the cold and getting all my long runs done.
How was your January?

This week's writing prompt: Rate your month in running. If you don't have anything to share about how your running month rated, feel free to post any running related blog post. Link-up with Patty, Erika, and Marcia!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Weekly Wrap: Sunshine, Fog, Wind. ahhh WInter Running!

Another week in the books!

Sunday: Negative split run, felt really good, the sunshine felt amazing

Monday: 400s x8 with a warm up and cool down.  Super foggy run and a little chilly but not bad. 30 minutes of yoga
Tuesday:Rest day

Wednesday:  Long run day, the sun was out for about half the run, towards the end it was gone and the wind picked up and it was cold!

Upper body workout

There is still so much snow!

Thursday: 15 minute HIIT workout and 45 minutes of yoga

Friday: 20 minutes of yoga in the morning.

Saturday:  30 minutes on the elliptical and 21 day Fix Extreme Upper Body.  I admit I totally wussed out on the run, the wind was crazy and I just didn't want to deal with it. So I cross trained on the elliptical,  I didn't feel bad about it as my left food was sore the day after my long run this week and I wanted to give it more of a rest from the pounding.  It doesn't hurt to walk or run but it has a niggle and I don't want it to get out of hand!

Miles: 25.2
Strength workouts: 3
Yoga: 4
Elliptical: 30 minutes

linking up with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap
weekly wrap up
 feel free to check it out and join in! 
The purpose of this link is to connect with and support other active women.  You can summarize your whole week or just a small portion of it.  It's up to you!  Race recaps are also encouraged!   {See complete rules} 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Weekly Wrap: Week 3 of January

It was a week of much warmer running weather and I was loving it!

Sunday: 5.5 miles

Monday:  I took a nap instead of a run... but I did do P90X3 CVX workout which is kind of like cardio with weights

Tuesday: Long run 11 miles in the glorious sunshine.  20 minutes of easy yoga first thing in the morning and Upper Body Fix from the 21 Day Fix

Wednesday 5 miles with hill repeats and a couple 400s
21 day Fix workout

Thursday  21 day Fix Total Body workout

Friday: 21 Day Fix Extreme Lower Body Fix

Saturday: 6 miles, 4 miles hilly and then 2 miles with strides mixed in

Runs: 27.5 miles in 4 runs
Strength: 6 workouts. More than planned
Yoga: 1 less than planned...oops, guess I felt like being strong this week.

I got home from my long run Wednesday to fun mail.

So I had to try on my new running pullover of course right away.

linking up with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap
weekly wrap up
 feel free to check it out and join in! 
The purpose of this link is to connect with and support other active women.  You can summarize your whole week or just a small portion of it.  It's up to you!  Race recaps are also encouraged!   {See complete rules} 

Friday, January 20, 2017

Friday FIve

1. The thing about having very distinct seasons is that you can find beauty in all of them and in my mind appreciate the good weather so much more having made it through the extremes on either end. I love fall and spring. and I don't mind winter when the weather is milder. It's so beautiful. Blue skies so blue you want to get lost in them.

2. I made my favorite peanut butter oatmeal balls yesterday. I love how easy they are and the kids love them too.

1 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup ground flax
1 tsp vanilla

I also made a batch with raisins instead of chocolate chips and added some chia seeds to it as well.

3. Can't even begin to describe how much I am loving the warmer weather this week.  The 30s are divine after all that subzero business.

4. I tried to get a picture with both dogs the other day... here is Cola and I... Roader was busy running off with my headband so he could bury it in the snow. He dug it back up two days later and left if on the porch.

 5. This sign always makes me a little happy. No pavement, slower driving, less people, dirt roads.. life is good.


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Winter Gear for Surviving a Winter Running in Montana

I am sure as a runner you get that question when it is twenty below zero.. "You aren't running in this are you?"  Uh.. Yeah actually I am.  Silence. Shocked stare. "Don't you freeze your lungs?"  Well I am here breathing just fine aren't I.  A runner has to run.

The key to running in extreme cold temperatures is having the right gear. In the summer it's easy, you throw on a socks, shoes, shorts a tank, and bra and are out the door. Not so easy in the winter when layers become your friend.

I'm going to start from the head down..
A warm hat is of course key. I don't have any one brand. 

The eyes.. this gets tough. Sunglasses get all fogged up, and I know from experience that if you are running in really cold wind chills you are at risk of your eyes freezing shut. Not fun.  Enter the ski goggles.

A balaclava is a must when it is below zero as well. I find I can go without it for short stretches, especially when running with the wind, but when running into the wind it is a life saver!

I wear a thermal base layer,  I have three that I use quite a bit, one is from Target and has a turtle neck, the other is Under Armour base gear and the other is Under Armour cold gear with a mock neck.   They are all very warm and get a lot of use in the cold winter months.

Apparently blue is my base layer color for tops.
 I put another long sleeve pullover over the top of the base layer. Usually one of my pretty INKnBURN shirts.  I like lots of color in the winter.  and finally over the top of that I wear a jacket.   This winter I seem to be using my Ragnar jacket quite a bit (as seen in the top picture with the ski goggles).  It is quite warm although I do find it doesn't breath very well and is usually all coated in sweat on the inside that my base layers nicely wicked away.  I don't notice the wetness until I take it off. Maybe it isn't ideal, but it has kept me warm so I keep using it for subzero temps.  I am thinking of getting this zoned heat jacket from Altra

For bottoms I also start with a base layer, fleece lines if it is subzero and just a thin pair of tights or capris if it is between 5 and 20.  I then layer another pair of fleece lined tights over the top. (I really hate being cold)

Here is an example of a 15 degree day. Base layer, Inknburn pullover on top and thin tights with fleece lined tights over the top. I did also have on gloves.
I usually wear a thin pair of compression socks with another ankle length pair over the top and find this works well, and bread sacks over the socks helps keep feet warm and dry as well.

Right now I am loving my Altra Lone Peak 3s with the NeoShell.. talk about keeping my toes warm and dry even with only one pair of socks and no bread sacks.

and awesome grippy traction.

I also love hand warmers if it is really cold out, but I find I don't need them unless it is below zero.

This picture is for Wendy.. she asked me if all the wide open spaces I run in make me anxious...no no and no! I find so much peace there.

 Looking at a picture of a city makes me anxious.. all those people all crowded together. No space. Traffic. Buildings Aack. no thanks.

This week's writing prompt: Favorite Winter Gear.  If you don't have anything to share about Favorite Winter Gear, feel free to post any running related blog post.  Link-up with PattyErika, and Marcia!

Does looking at wide open spaces make you anxious?
What is your go to cold weather gear?

Monday, January 16, 2017

Weekly Wrap: Here Comes the Sun

Sunday: 4.25 miles... cold cold cold! I planned for 5 but I have to admit I made a tactical error and ran into the wind to start with and my hands were so cold at the end I didn't care about the other three quarters of a mile.  I am really over the subzero temps!

Monday; 10 miles.. another cold run. So over this weather!

Tuesday: 40 minutes of yoga before work

Wednesday:  21 Day Fix Extreme ABC Extreme workout

Thursday: a quick 4 miles after work... things are warming up a bit!

Friday: 21 day Fix Extreme Yoga and Power Strength Extreme from the 21 Day Fix Extreme

Saturday: 7 mile run  and the 21 day Fix Extreme Upper Body Fix
It felt so nice outside! Loving the sunshine and not being super bundled up!

What's with all the 21 Day Fix Extreme?   I have done Zuzka Light workouts for years and felt like I needed a change, so I joined Beachbody on Demand and so far am loving the variety and challenge of new and different workouts.  Zuzka does a lot of burpees and those seem to make my back mad. 

linking up with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap
weekly wrap up
 feel free to check it out and join in! 
The purpose of this link is to connect with and support other active women.  You can summarize your whole week or just a small portion of it.  It's up to you!  Race recaps are also encouraged!   {See complete rules} 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Three Things Thursday

1.  New shoes!  As part of being an Altra Ambassador I am lucky to recieve to pairs of Altra shoes.. of my choice!  You can't believe what a hard decision this was! I quickly had it narrowed down to 5 pairs of shoes.  Torins, Olympus, Paradigm, Lone Peaks and and One.  Ultimately I went withe the Lone Peaks with the Neoshell in the black and mint ( a color my daughter is in love with) and the Olympus in the shitake and coral (a color my daughter did not like) (but I do and I win)

I picked the Lone Peaks because I have been wanting to try those out for a long time and they have the NeoShell that keeps your feet warm and dry.. and it's winter and will get super slushy here as soon as things start to warm up a little

I picked the Olympus because I have two older pairs and LOVE them and really wanted to try the newer model.  and a little bit I just really liked the color.

2. I was looking at pictures last night and find that here in the depths of winter times like this (warm times, green times wearing shorts times) feel very far away

3. I have warned my kids multiple times about leaving things around the house that our beagle puppy can chew on as he chews on everything... although he is getting better.  So when my son came to me the other day as said "Mom, remember how you told us that we shouldn't leave things laying around we didn't want Roader to chew on? and how it would be our own fault if he did?"  I knew right away that I had been the one to leave something out that Roader got too. Sure enough, my vacuum cord was pulverized by little beagle teeth.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

My Mantras for 2017

I blogged last year how I hate the new year, new you thing. It is not a whole new me just because it is a new year. I don't hate the old me so much that I need a new one. I do like the pick a word for the year thing.  Last year I didn't really have a word, but a saying, a mantra that carried me through.
Find joy in the journey
I felt like it helped carry me through some times where my attitude was lacking in positivity.  I would remind myself to find the joy in the journey and it would calm me a bit and help me refocus.  I think I will continue to use it this year. I also love

She believed she could so she did
and I used it many times to get through hard things, like my marathon and the Ragnar running in the intense Hawaiian heat.

This year I am going to also add
Just breathe
because often just taking a step back, taking a breath or two and reminding myself to just breathe
helps me relax and refocus and know the one thing I can always control in my own attitude. Except when I am tired, then don't get between me and my bed, or when I'm hungry...feed me.  But really we have such a short time here and the time with my kids is flying by.   

and finally

                                                       Make it happen

because I am the only one who can make me do my runs and my workouts. I have to make it happen if I want to reach the goals. 

Do you have a word for the year or a mantra? Is this a new year and a new you?
linking up

This week's writing prompt: Racecation or Weekend Local Warrior?  If you don't have anything to share about the topic, feel free to post any running related blog post.  Link-up with PattyErika, and Marcia!

Monday, January 9, 2017

Week 1 of 2017 Failed to Freeze me Out

 And just like that the first week of 2017 is over. It's been snowy, cold and windy. and lots of work for the snow plows!

Week in workouts

  • Sunday: it was really freaking cold out.. like -30 with the windchill... I spent a good 45 minutes on the elliptical and did half an hour of yoga 
  • Monday: 5.5 easy miles, but once again it was really cold out. 2017 is a chilly one. and once again half on hour of challenging yoga

  • Tuesday: Half an hour of yoga in the morning before work
  • Wednesday: Got tired of trying to keep the sunglasses from fogging up and resorted to ski goggles, genius, why didn't I do this before. 9 mile longish run. Half an hour of upper body workout
  • Thursday: Half an hour of yoga
  • Friday: Half an hour of total body strength workout
  • Saturday: 5 miles easy and 30 minutes of light strength work

It's really hard to get good pictures when it is so freaking cold out and my phone dies fast, and really all I want to do is get back in where it is warm!

Totals for the week: 
  • Miles run: 20
  • Strength workouts done: 3
  • Yoga: 4
  • Elliptical: 45 minutes
All in all a pretty good week! 

The kids went back to school on Wednesday.  I am still working on my racing plans for 2017 but they seem to be coming together. I am currently debating doing a 50k or do I work on half marathons this year. 

linking up with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap
weekly wrap up
 feel free to check it out and join in! 
The purpose of this link is to connect with and support other active women.  You can summarize your whole week or just a small portion of it.  It's up to you!  Race recaps are also encouraged!   {See complete rules} 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

So I joined the Bullet Journal Movement

So after seeing a blog post on bullet journaling I looked it up and got intrigued.  Intrigued enough to order a bullet journal, some colorful pens and a small ruler.
Somehow I wasn't paying attention and what I meant to order was a 5x8 inch journal, what I ordered was a  3.5x5.5 inch journal.  Much smaller than I wanted.  I think I got more focused on the color and lost sight of what size I was putting in my cart. Since I didn't know how much I was actually going to get into bullet journaling I decided I would just make do with the smaller one and if I use it all up then I can get the bigger one next time.

I just started working on it this morning and so far I have an index page
All 12 months

Pages for all 52 weeks of the year although only January is filled in so far
And a workout log.

Add caption
My next planned page is for keeping track of mileage on running shoes. I also have in mind a 4-H page for both of the kids to keep track of their projects and upcoming events.   Pages for house stuff and gardening.

I am most excited to have a project to work on while I am waiting on kids at activities. and I am already wondering if I just shouldn't have got the bigger book. I am not super artsy so I don't see it being a pinterest worthy journal but I do intend to have fun with it.