Thursday, May 17, 2012

Blogging....for real!

I promise I am going to be better about posting!
On quick lunch break so I figured I would try to fix up this blog a bit.

First, Scared to say this: ART has helped me overcome a minor setback....silly hip flexor, piriformis and IT band. While my doctor wouldn't let me run the full marathon, I was able to run the Pittsburgh Half Marathon. ( Pics to come)
I decided that I would just have fun with it...no trying to beat my PR...just relax, have fun, keep myself injury free and....walk if need be. Of course the weather helped me achieve that goal as it was super HOT the day of the half...I walked twice for the first time ever in a half marathon and took in the sights- the volunteers, the awesome signs, the spectators, and the sights of Pittsburgh. Finished in 1:52..definitely not my fastest 1/2 marathon..but I will take it with battling injury and the sun beating down on me.

Best sign ever: You have trained longer for this than Kim Kardashian was married!

Haha I was dying when I saw that sign- burst out laughing in the middle of the course. And that, my friends, is what running is about- having fun!

Pics to come!!!

Happy Thursday!
~Laura~

Thursday, April 5, 2012

beautiful run

Happy Thursday!!!

It has been a great training week. Every day I meant to meet my new goal of blogging more often but unfortunately that has not happened! Ah well....baby steps.

Baby steps. Anyone ever see the movie "What about Bob?" Great movie. Baby steps.

Back to the training week:
Saturday: 18 mile run
Sunday: 15 min Elliptical, 1hr 15 min hot power vinyasa
Monday: 30 min swimming laps- 10 min transition to hour spin class (24 miles)
Tuesday: MXT (Midtown Extreme Training- extreme bootcamp) before work, 4.3 miles after work
Wednesday: 30 min swim
Thursday: 4 mile run

Backing off on the running mileage this week to stay healthy and injury free. I have found that cross training has helped me knock off some PR's even without high mileage.

While I really enjoy the cross training, also enjoyed a beautiful run part through the city and part through the park.
View from my run tonight

Other fun things this week:
- Read a really great book- completely not related to work or training- "The Bungalow" A novel about a nurse who falls in love during World War II while engaged to someone else.
-Didn't end up working too many crazy hours
- I heard from a patients family from several years ago
-Swam outdoors for the first time this season

Do you find cross training makes you a stronger runner?
Ever done a triathlon?

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Double workouts and 18 miles

So, I finally decided it was time to get serious with this Half Ironman training plan (in the midst of training for a marathon).
Wednesday my plan called for a double workout (am and pm) so I started off the morning like I normally do on Wednesdays- 530 am swim. I swam 1200 yards and then did a bit of pool running. After work I ran 5 easy miles and felt great! I could have kept going but the "injury free" Laura said time to stop.

After a nice workout I decided it was time for one of my favorite protein packed meals:
Baked Chicken stuffed with spinach and cheese- super healthy! 
Check out the recipe here

And, because I am trying to be healthy....a side of roasted brussels sprouts. 

Today, I ran 18 miles at Mendon Ponds with the group- Great run.

Reasons why I rocked this run:

1.) I stuffed my face with Mexican food last night at this restaurant
Picture about 7 baskets of chips (for 5 people) and sides of guacamole. Best guacamole in Rochester hands down. I pretty much would have been satisfied with guacamole alone but ordered chicken fajitas as well. When I woke up this morning I was still full and tasting Mexican.    

2.) After the NYC half marathon I decided to utilize gels more.
 I have always been a fan of PowerBar gels- usually only the vanilla flavor. However, today I decided to use the chocolate with caffeine- soooo good and I was so full of energy I could have done 20 miles today!

3.) Cross training. 
This week I did power vinyasa, extreme boot camp, swam and ran. Nice little mix to keep the hip flexor, piriformis, and IT band happy.

4.) My minimalist shoes. (8.5 oz)


Adidas Boston 2
(sad that the Boston 3 is out...its slightly narrower)


Now, I am camped out in my compression socks in recovery mode. Ah, perfect Saturday!

What do you do to make long runs go well? Nutrition? 

Best kind of compression socks??
I use Zensah. 






Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Yoga RAVE!

Sunday marked the first time ever that Rochester has had.......a Yoga Rave!!




Harro East Ballroom- Rochester, NY 3.25.12

What you ask is a yoga rave?
Well my friends it is a combination of power vinyasa, dancing and savasana.
Put on thanks to Lululemon and my gym.

What a great time!!!
The doors opened at 6:30pm and from this point until 7:15 LuLulemon had provided body paint, glow sticks, blinking rings and lights to attach to your clothing.

BODY paint!!!! SO fun!

Julie and I decorated our arms and faces with paint before settling down on our mats and figuring out which limb to display our glow sticks on.
Hearts on my face!!!

Julie and I getting ready on our mats




The power vinyasa started around 7:15 and went until about 8:45. So incredible to be in a dark room, techno music blaring, doing yoga with glow sticks lighting up the ball room.

The instructors soothing voices came in over the techno music, creating a nice balance as we moved through the class. While I caught myself taking in the scenery a few times, rather than focusing on my practice, I still reaped huge benefits. Not only was this class fun and playful, but also physically challenging!!! (my arms are still sore 2 days later).

Next it was Dance party USA!!! For about 30 minutes it was mostly dancing,and big circles of love as we all gathered around and held hands while balancing on one leg. We even had a few "yoga trains" around the room. Wedding reception meets techno club while at the gym style!

video

What a great vibe in the entire room!! Everyone was happy, dancing around carefree. And those who aren't fabulous dancers (ME) could have the option to spike a florescent ball in the air through the crowd.  Or...You could practice your awesome yoga moves:



The night ended with an extra long savasana...What a great night!!!

What's your favorite type of yoga?


Ever been to a yoga rave?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

NYC Half Marathon Race Recap and more

LOVE LOVE NYC.

The excitement started Friday afternoon when I was able to miraculously leave work early to catch my 50 minute flight to NYC. I always feel bad leaving work for others to complete, but was soooooo excited to get out and to the airport.

Best part: It was SUNNY and in the 60's in Rochester on March 16th!!!

Obviously, the first thing I did when I got home was put my cute sandals on.....and finish packing (yep, nothing like leaving things to the last minute Laura). Poor Alex had to wait in my driveway for a few minutes as I wasn't ready when he picked me up for the airport. ooops.

At the Rochester airport I got several comments on how I was smart to have sandals on~ as everyone else was hot. However, when I landed in NYC.....It was colder than Rochester. Still, nothing to complain about. At least it wasn't snowing in March!

After leaving Jet Blue terminal (LOVE jetblue). I waited in a nice long line to get a cab to Allison's. Normally, I would probably be annoyed to wait that long, but not that night. I was just excited to be in NYC!  Best part about cab?
I could read my celebrity gossip on the screen in the backseat! I'm sure the cabby was thinking "silly tourist" as I kept flipping through all the screens.

After getting to Allison's we promptly got ready to go out to dinner and celebrate her boyfriends birthday (Which was the day of the race). We went to a fabulous Japanese restaurant called Morimoto where I had what else- SUSHI! The food was definitely over priced but very good.
And the atmosphere....Pretty awesome!
                                                              Bar downstairs

                                                            Wall made of glasses!
And of course the tourist in me had to get a picture of.......
                      The bathroom stall!!- Heated toilet seat and awesome mirror behind toilet.

After dinner we stayed out far too late~ but flying into NYC I had already made the plan that I was not running this race to qualify...but rather wanted to have fun and stay injury free. (speed and hills always tend to agitate my injuries)
So fun we had! Somehow it was 4am and time to head back to Allison and Chris's apartment....4am really??? I have a hard time staying up past 10pm normally. But somehow, the energy of the city is very different than back home.

Saturday morning we got up and it was time for the expo. It was sunny and in the 60's! What a gorgeous day!
The expo was packed with lots of runners, families, fabulous samples and great booths. I scored a new Sparkly Soul headband and got to meet the girl behind the headbands. If you do not own one you are missing out! Super fun accessory and does NOT slip no matter how sweaty you get.
It was also nice to see the Leukemia and Lymphoma society there (how I got started running marathons) with their usual inspiring posters:

And Had to get a shot with the RUN poster.

                       Thank you man who took this photo for not telling Allison she was blocking the"L".

And obviously, needed to get the bib shot:


Now, onto the RACE:

0645: Walking off the train and seeing the "elite" runners lined up made me wish I had trained harder, hydrated better, and not lost my focus when I went to Jamaica the week prior. I had to remind myself that I am not an Olympian, and I am never going to be one, so it was time to have fun and keep myself healthy.

Qualifying for the NYC full marathon (1:37 time) was out of the picture....but I did have a secret goal...just PR.


0715: Announcers talking about all the world famous athletes (Kenyans) and Olympians (Kara, Desi, Meb) that were present. AWESOME! I was so excited to be there.

0730: Race officially starts....for the elite corral. My corral (7) didn't move for many minutes later. The first mile I felt myself getting annoyed- I couldn't move at a decent pace because there were so many people and I was running into people that were barely even running- Really??? How were they in a corral ahead of me????

Mile 2-3: Pace is better....and I realize I was very wrong about something....Central Park is NOT flat. I was sticking to a 7:45- 8:05 pace but was huffing. And I do not like to huff and puff in a race...especially at mile 3.

5K: Decent split time~ 24 minutes.

6-8 miles: Out of the park- turning down the street and seeing hundreds of people spectating: AMAZING.

Running through Times Square: Amazing.

My garmin saying that I was running at a 4:57 pace: also amazing but NOT true!
My poor garmin didn't know what to do with itself with all the electronics in the vicinity of Times Square. It definitely was entertaining to watch it thinking I was running that fast- and then it flipped to 13:50...what??!  As soon as I was out of the area it decided to act normal again.

10k split: 49:39  Ok, I'll take it.

15k split: 1:14: 37 ...just barely under an 8min pace... And then I started to feel my IT band...lateral knee pain my absolute favorite. And I realized I was very dehydrated.

Mile 12: 1:37 time...yep, sadly I looked at my garmin and thought I should be crossing the finish line now...byebye NYC marathon qualification. I was tired and realized I should have taken an extra GU...had one at mile 8.5 and should have taken another...too late now.

And then...there was the Battery Tunnel. Dark. But exciting- runners were shrieking in the dimly lit tunnel as we all knew the finish was near. BAM. No garmin signal. I had no clue how fast I was running, I just knew I had to keep moving forward.

Let there be light! I saw the end of the tunnel. Best part of the exit from the tunnel?
A sign that said 800m to go!
800m, 800m...being the non-track runner that I am I was trying to decide if that was 1 or 2 laps around a track. One sounded better.

When I saw the 400m to go sign the crowd support picked up and all I heard was screaming. My legs were so heavy. I could see the finish and my garmin said 1:44...Somehow I managed to cross with a PR...by 17 seconds:

1:45:40

So NYC half marathon: you were a PR.... by the skin of your teeth.

Lessons Learned:

1. Properly hydrate!! (this includes the days PRIOR to the race)
2. Do not walk all over NYC the day before the race.
3. Get Adequate sleep.
4. Take more GU than you think you need.
5. Look at the course elevation before the race

Positives:
~Great course- challenging hilly central park and great crowd support in Times Square
~Well organized
~ Racing with elite runners
~the obvious: in NYC

Negatives
~Corrals in front had slower runners
~finish line wasn't large enough for the number of runners and spectators- very difficult to find people
~Not enough size small tech shirts at the expo

After the race:
Water and then:


A mimosa to celebrate. Sorry kidneys and liver.


                  Shirt a little on the big side: no prob, put on some leggings and make it look cute!



What's your favorite NYC restaurant?


Tips for hydrating and taking GU appropriately in a 13.1?













Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Shamrock Shake please

Today, for some some reason, I woke up on the wrong side of the bed.  2 possible reasons: 1.) I was up way to late...11:30... I normally rise at 5:15am.  2.) I knew one of my patients was going to get bad news today.
I climbed out of bed and felt like I hadn't slept at all...in fact my eyes were so puffy that my coworker asked if I was okay. GRRRR. Dislike.

I did make it to MXT (bootcamp) this morning before work...which made me feel better, but was dragging all day at work. HMM could it be that I am giving up Diet Coke?? Went 4 days without one and then had just one yesterday and one today. ( I still drink coffee though).

Still tired and semi grumpy even though I am now home on my couch. I can feel my hip/pyraformis a bit- Have NOT run since Saturday. Can someone please bring me a shamrock shake? That will make everything better! :)


Do you like Shamrock Shakes?? 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

New Beginnings

Well...As you can see I have not been very good with my New Year's Resolution of writing in this blog! But..It is never to late to start! So here is to new beginnings!


My training has been going so well...until this week where I noticed that my hip flexor and pyraformis were getting tight. Now, the old Laura would have pushed through the pain. 2012 Laura decided the 14 mile long run...probably should be cut short. After 10 glorious miles in Mendon Ponds park I decided to stop yesterday...I felt pretty good and wanted to press forward but could feel my hip and glut tightening up. So 2012 Laura stopped.


10 miles. Not too bad.
The Beach Parking Lot~ Mendon Ponds

 At. Least. I. Am. Running!


Felt great all day on Saturday, went shopping with a friend and then out for girls night- I had been dreaming of guacamole all day long....

And I promptly stuffed my face as soon as we arrived at the restaurant! Yum. We went to this restaurant which has the most amazing guacamole in this city...I think maybe only beat by a restaurant I went to in NYC.

Fabulous night with good friends...

And then the morning.....
I woke up with hip flexor and pyraformis pain...pain I haven't felt in months. I have been so good with keeping my mileage low and stretching...And haven't needed ART since September. Unfortunately, part of it I think is out of my control (my legs are 2 different lengths- very slightly so but enough to impact a marathoner) and the other part is...I did not take a rest day last week.

I laid in bed this morning feeling defeated. I knew I should have taken a rest day, but honestly I have kept my mileage very very low. I took the dog out, fed her, and then climbed BACK into bed, covers over head. I wanted to just swallow myself up in my down comforter.

Then, I decided feeling defeated would get me....absolutely no where!

So, I got myself out of bed, threw on my yoga clothes and went to heated power vin. Just what I needed. The sunday yoga instructor is Amazing- not just in the sense that you leave class drenched in sweat, but also she is quite possibly the most motivational person I have met. (other than my grandmother).

She started out class with telling us "Youth is not a number". "Children do not let the weight of the world wear them down. So today, play on your mat a little. Don't take yourself so seriously. Just play".

Great start! Yes, I have goals. Yes, I oh so much want to run a sub 1:37 NYC half. But, also Laura, yes just play and don't worry about your hip, your IT band or anything other than having fun on your mat. So, I did.

I still feel the ache in my pyraformis. But I know what to do. I will not over train. I will ice. I will take ibuprofen. I will foam roll. And I will stretch every single day. And if it is still there tomorrow, I will not be defeated. 
From pintrest.


Happy Sunday everyone!







Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Extreme Training and Coldstone

Today started out great! I woke up at 5:45 and was at the gym by 6 for Extreme Bootcamp~ one of my favorite classes (picture Jillian Michaels Shred level 3 x 1 hour with two 20 second water breaks). Definitely gets you in shape! I was always so opposed to going to boot camp type classes but now have learned how important it is to incorporate strength training into a gym routine- and its fun!! (even better in the summer when my gym holds the class outdoors- even better when we get to flip big tractor tires in the mud)

check out this crazy boot camp on my gyms blog site!


Since I have been so good the past few days with my workout schedule, I figured why not give myself a treat that I have been craving- MMMMM coldstone!!!
YUM!!

Now off to plan a tropical vacation- may need to start focusing on working off this ice cream for bikini!!!

Are you traveling anywhere fun this winter???

Monday, January 9, 2012

speedwork

After hitting Snooze a million times on both my iPhone and "real" alarm clock...I did not get up for a morning run...opps. Worked late...and was feeling pretty fatigued by the end of the day BUT I did force myself to go to the gym and do some speedwork.

7:24 pace x .25 miles for several repeats...Not crazy fast, but have been so careful of this ankle the past few months that I have done ZERO speedwork until today. After a nice 4 miles I felt good with endorphins flowing again!
Watch out NYC....I will pound your streets in 10 weeks!

Time to get to bed and try to get a few chapters of my book in. ~ Reading the Girl that Kicked the Hornet's Nest- hopefully will be as good as the first 2 books.

What are you reading?
How often do you do Speedwork???

Thursday, January 5, 2012

NYC half and headlamp love

I have been so bad about posting!!!
My goal is to start blogging regularly, and now that the holidays are over I have no excuses!

Biggest news of late: I got into the NYC half!!!! wooohooo! My friend Allison, who lives in NYC, and I are going to rock this race- so excited that we BOTH got in!! And it is on St Patricks day- green team sparkle skirt all the way!!!!  I have a secret goal for this race....but I am afraid to say it.... MY PR is currently 1:45 coming off an injury...

The race is 10 weeks away so my plan is:
~gradually increase mileage (to avoid injury)
~hill workouts
~speed work
~yoga at least once a week (to avoid injury)
~MXT (bootcamp) at least once a week (to avoid injury)

Runners so often forget how important strength training is (including me) and one of my 2012 goals is to AVOID INJURY!


Fast Abs

Forget crunches. If you want to get faster, fitter, and stronger, you need to train your core like a runner. By Alyssa Shaffer

Image by Sarah A. FriedmanFrom the February 2009 issue of Runner's World 


Tonight, I had a great workout- Sorry Treadmill, the headlamp won!!!! (actually I am not sorry). Great  5 mile trail run/hill run/road run- nothing like mixing it up and the headlamp works great in the dark woods! I usually stick to the light on the sidewalks when running at night, but now that I have found my headlamp I definitely plan to continue trails and road running with the safety of knowing that everyone can see me and my fantastically bright light.