Finding a Balance

Learning to live a healthy, balanced life.


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Memorial Day Weekend fun

It started with a ten-mile run on Friday and a Twins game Friday night!

I ran from my house along the river and then met a friend to run around one of the lakes and then ran home. Felt pretty great until the last mile or so. I was pretty crabby and every little ache annoyed me. But other than that, I was happy with my pace and feel pretty good about my half coming up.

Saturday morning we got up and made a quick trip up north to help my husband’s sister’s family move into their brand new house!

(Our nephew helping clean up — what a cutie!)

(Jesse installing door hardware)

We got back into town last night, so this morning I went on a fun run around the Lake with some friends!

The rest of the day today has been busy and we did a lot of landscaping work. Of course that included a trip to Menards. That parking lot is enough to make you want to start drinking immediately.

Now we’re off to enjoy the last little bit of the holiday weekend with some burgers and a beer (or two) 🙂 Happy Memorial Day everyone!


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Weekend race recap

It sure was an eventful weekend!

On Saturday, the girls from the two sites of the Girls on the Run Twin Cities inaugural season all ran the Be the One Run 5K. Most of them ran with their parents as their running buddy or volunteers. (*side note: I finally got to meet Erica, who I recruited to be a running buddy. She got her girl to the finish line with a smile on her face!)

My running buddy’s family got lost on their way to the race so she didn’t end up making it in time 😦 Since I didn’t end up with a running buddy, I did something I’ve never done before – live tweeted during a race. It was a lot of fun, but somehow more challenging than just running 3.1 miles!

Check out the GOTR-TC Facebook page for the photos I took during the race.

Sunday was cold and rainy, but it didn’t lots of people participating in the MN AIDS Walk and 4-Mile run. Some friends and I volunteered as part of the spirit squad for the runners! How much fun to be on the “other side” for once. I loved seeing how appreciative some of the runners were for our cheering and encouragement.

Yesterday was absolutely gorgeous outside. I took advantage of the sunshine and great temps by going for an 18.4 mile bike ride. After I got home, Jesse and I went to our local garden store (I love this place) and picked up some plants for our garden.

Once we got those in the ground, I hit up my favorite weekly core class at Lifetime.

(Taken during my bike ride.)
Bike stats – 18.4 miles in 1:18:23

Needless to say, I slept like a baby last night.


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Looking ahead to the weekend + GOTR 5K

Well, tomorrow is the big day! It’s the Be the One Run 5K and the girls from both of the Girls on the Run Twin Cities sites will be running! I’m excited to be a running buddy, I wasn’t able to make the practice run due to a work meeting, so it will be a surprise who I’m paired with!

The weather looks like it will be nice – a little warm though!

Sunday I’m volunteering with the Minnesota AIDS Project MN AIDS Walk/Run. Some friends and I are going to be a part of the Run Spirit Squads!

I’m also excited for this on Sunday. I absolutely ADORE street festivals.

This week’s workouts so far have consisted of a super tough core class on Monday that left me with sore abs for the next TWO days! Also my first brick (!!) on Tuesday, a strength training gym session and an outside 3.5 mile run on Wednesday, a rest day yesterday and I got up and swam this morning! I think I have bide ride plans with a friend this afternoon.

Brick stats:

4.2 mile bike – 19 minutes 24 seconds
3.01 mile run – 30 minutes 23 seconds

I ran out of time to bike any further because I had to meet my friend that I was running with. Also, the first half of a mile was in a residential area and the last bit was directly into the wind.

Because of the 5K tomorrow, I’m planning to do another short-midlength run later in the afternoon and save my 10-miler that’s on my training schedule for next week. I am taking Friday off of work so I think I’ll do it on Friday!

Oh, and the YWCA posted their training plan this week and it has me VERY nervous for all of the preparations for my triathlon which is a month sooner than the YWCA one!


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May #runchat challenge

This month’s #runchat challenge:
Take a different route. Run a road you’ve never been on; run on a trail you’ve never explored; or run a race that’s new to you.

The next #runchat challenge is to push yourself to do something different at least once in May and take a picture of that road, or trail, or you during that new race, or you after that particular run.

On my nine-miler last week I consulted my husband to see what running routes were his favorite while he was marathon training a couple of years ago. He suggested taking some of the paths along the river. While I run along the river quite often, there are some paths that split off from the main route that I’ve never checked out. I’m glad that I did though — it’s so green and peaceful!

I also realized that I’ve never properly trained for a half marathon before. The first half that I ran I didn’t really follow a plan and the longest run I did before the half was the TC 10-Mile a few weeks prior. The second half (and the one that left me injured and unable to run for six months) I might have hit 8 miles once (but in all likelihood it was less than that) and did not keep up with my short runs during the week.

What’s different this time around is that I’m not only following a plan, I’m not stressing about having to move things around to make sure I get my miles logged. So what if my long run is supposed to be on Saturday? Move it to Sunday — no big deal. And I’m actually looking forward to my runs instead of dreading them. Feels good 🙂

Celebratory mirror photo post-run. (Is it 2004 again?)


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An up and down week

So I went and got needles stuck in me yesterday.

After my first debilitating migraine in forever hit on Wednesday and my neck/shoulder pain persisting for three days, I asked for advice on FB and decided to make an emergency appointment to get in to see an acupuncturist. A few dozen needles later, I feel pretty amazing. In fact, right after the treatment, the pain had subsided completely. It didn’t stay away, but I have range of motion back and the pain has significantly decreased. I’m going back in a week for a follow-up treatment, thinking it could have benefits beyond just for that pain.

My stomach issues that crept up this past weekend still hadn’t gone away by mid-week and then I started thinking about the kinds of foods that I’ve recently reintroduced into my diet. Dairy (mainly ice cream — sigh.) and gluten. Have been avoiding these the last couple of days and am feeling better.

This week wasn’t all bad though. I had a stellar (for me) run on Wednesday morning. I had originally gotten up early to swim but it was the perfect weather for running instead – and I’m so glad that I did.

Inspired by Amy’s hard work at achieving negative splits — I decided to go for it! (I figured the 5 miles on my training schedule would be much easier to achieve negative splits than a half marathon! Especially with not having the race day adrenaline working against me.)

Mile 1 – 10:08
Mile 2 – 9:49
Mile 3 – 9:42
Mile 4 – 9:07
Mile 5 – 8:35

Total time: 47:22

I have a 9-miler on the books for tomorrow and I’m happy to have a friend running with me for six of those miles 🙂

What is everyone’s weekend running plans? …and has anyone ever gotten acupuncture before?

Happy Friday, everyone!


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Yoga bliss

Yoga bliss is something that I’ve definitely experienced before, but haven’t thought much about.

After way too long of a hiatus and a super busy day at work, I found myself laying on my yoga mat in a 105 degree room – one of my favorite places to be, ever.

I found my way back to The Yoga Pioneers (after, I admit, purchasing a Groupon – hey, the funds are a little low lately!) Now that I work close by again, I’m excited to be able to practice where I took my first ever yoga class – back then, the studio was called Bikram Yoga. It’s owned by the husband and wife team of Herb and Laiki – and they’re absolutely wonderful. (they have great new client specials if anyone ever wants to go sometime!)

So Herb always starts off class (I made sure that I made it to one he was teaching 🙂 with a teaching – and yesterday’s class was focused on happiness and the absence of misery. It was amazing how quickly the stressors of the day melted away as I listened to Herb’s soothing voice. After an intense one-hour (not sure I was ready for a 90 minute class yet!) practice, I was definitely experiencing yoga bliss as I laid in final svasana.

My favorite part of the whole experience at the Yoga Pioneers is that they have a dish set out with a thin, freshly sliced apple. NOTHING tastes better than that one apple slice at that moment. Yoga bliss usually continues for me the entire drive home. No matter the weather, I usually crack the window a bit and probably have a stupid smile on my face. Oh, and another benefit? No road rage!

I hope you’ve all experienced yoga bliss at some point in your life. and it’s probably a little different for everyone. How would you describe it?


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Lifetime Fitness Indoor Tri recap

After dealing with my foot issues this past week, a sensitive stomach for the past couple of days and a terrible night’s sleep, I woke up yesterday feeling pretty unenthusiastic about the indoor tri.

Drove (all the way) out to Maple Grove where my husband and I met up with our friends and we got checked in and headed to the locker rooms. I was feeling nauseous and nervous for some reason. Before I knew it, it was 8:50 and our wave started at 9 a.m. We headed out to the pool.

Swimming

I don’t have any pictures from the swim portion but we all got our Lifetime Fitness swim caps and chose our lanes. I shared mine with the hubby 🙂

Without any warning, they announced that the swim was starting. I resisted the urge to go out fast and kept a steady pace throughout. My arms got tired a lot more quickly than usual, but other than that I felt pretty great.

When our ten minutes were up (felt like they FLEW by!) we quickly headed back to the locker rooms to change and get to the cycling studio. I threw on my bike shorts, a tank and my cycling shoes and grabbed my running shoes since we only had a five-minute transition to the run portion.

Biking

What a s***show. The bikes were definitely not calibrated right and when I first started out, they weren’t even registering any distance. My husband, who is a strong biker, couldn’t match my speed, according to his tracker. We all were pretty frustrated. I felt bad for the Lifetime employees who were probably sick of dealing with people complaining about this. Plus, and this is totally my fault, I had my seat too low on my bike, so my knees were bothering me the entire 30 minutes. But then we all decided to relax and not worry about this portion and instead, rock out to the great playlist they had going!

Running

(I’m going so fast that I’m blurry. (riiiiight.))

Five minutes goes by super fast! We all got to the treadmills and I switched shoes quickly and we all shared some GU before starting. I mis-calculated what my speed needed to be to hit my goal of 2.1 mi in 20 minutes — oops. I was all-out sprinting at the end to try and make it up, but didn’t quite hit 2.1. (maybe instead of asking the person running the treadmill portion of the race to take our picture, I could’ve been running faster 🙂 )

FINISHED!

Official results:
Swim – 18 lengths
Bike – 24.2 mi
Run – 2.05 mi

I came in 9th place and was the 5th female overall!

…and my husband took first place in the running portion overall! (Last time he won the biking overall — amazing.) I still think if the bikes weren’t so messed up, he would’ve taken the biking this time, too 🙂

(post-indoor tri bloody)

This and the chips and queso I inhaled afterwards def didn’t help my queasiness but they tasted good. Once my race high wore off, I felt pretty awful again. The rest of the day was spent in bed, recovering.

This was my third Lifetime Fitness Indoor Tri and while they’ve all been great, I have to say the people working this tri in particular were fantastic! What a great experience — already looking forward to the next one 🙂