Thursday, February 19, 2009

Baja Fresh Pork Tostata Salad and New 4 Mile Time

Today I bested my 4 mile time by a half a minute or so and ran it on the treadmill in 34:00 flat. That's a 8:30 average which for me isn't too shabby. Tomorrow is a rest day and then I have another 12 miles on Saturday.

In other news, yesterday at lunch I got a "Salad" at Baja Fresh with Pork, veggies, a small amount of sour cream, avocado, and some other stuff. I noticed the salad weighed what seemed like 2 pounds. Now, I don't really count my calories any more because I have a pretty good idea what I'm putting in my body from my experience watching it so closely over the past year and a half. But out of curiosity I looked it up.

Here's what I found:

doh! Lucky for me I did burn about 600 calories earlier in the day, but still, look at that saturated fat content!
I wasn't far off on the weight either as it's listed as weighing 1 pound 11 ounces!


After that moment of reality I buttoned up my diet for the rest of the day and stayed under my maintenance number, but still. It just goes to show how a few "lax" meals can very soon turn into weight gain. It also goes to show that as most of us probably already know, just because it's a salad doesn't mean it's healthy!

I guess there is one positive, that salad combined with the shakes I have in the morning had enough protein to feed a horse.

With as much running and lifting as I've been doing, it's really hard to eat well all the time because as much as I eat I'm hungry all the time. I think my body is a calorie burning machine right now. Unless I keep healthy food in front of me at all times it's really hard not to justify having cheat meals all over the place since I know I'm burning so many calories.

I gotta try to stop that and dial that in a little better.

I also have to go get something to eat because I'm starving right now. Later :)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

New 5 Mile Time

I bested my 5 mile record by 2 minutes. Not really on purpose, moreso because I didnt feel like running so I figured the faster I ran the sooner it would be over.

5 miles - 43:26.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Yes! 12 miles, I win.

Those two days of rest paid off. I ran 12 miles this morning!

I was only supposed to run 10, and not 12 for another 2 weeks, but screw it, I felt good so I kept going. I ran it in 1:48:30 which is averaging a 9:03 mile. That's a minute below my goal!

My training schedule didn't even have me running 13, but I think I'm going to ramp up the next two long Saturday runs and make the next one 12 instead of 11, and the next one 13. Then the next few weeks will be a recovery mode before the actual race. If I'd of gone another mile today and kept the same pace I would have completed a half marathon in less then 2 hours. I think that is awesome for a first timer , let alone someone who never ran at all a year ago, and I'm really happy with myself because I now KNOW I can do it.

Originally my goal was just to finish, but now that I know I can I plan to get under 2:00:00 in the actual Half Marathon.

For now though, I gotta go soak my feet and stretch a bit more. Overall I feel pretty good though! RAWR!!!

P.S. One interesting fact I just calculated based on my average heart rate, average speed, time and weight; Calories burned: 1,960!
Kinda crazy. So if you want to lose weight just run 12 miles every day.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


A few problems today.

Not big problems, but I was due to run 5 miles this morning. The past due days I've tried to take it easy as I really do think I may have overdone it by biking on Sunday.
This morning came and something was going on with work that kept me up late last night, and up early this morning, preventing me from doing my run.

Now, I've done almost all of my running over the past year and a half in the AM. Often before eating anything.

I had lunch at noon or so today, and since it was unseasonably warm outside I decided to head over to Valley Forge Park again and get my 5 miles in.

After the first mile my sides started to hurt. Then before the second mile hit I had stomach cramps. Wow, that really sucked.
I toughed it out to three miles, then decided to walk. I did that for maybe a half a mile, then when I felt better I ran another mile to so, short of my 5 mile goal for the day.

So I guess there is something to be seat for routine. My theory is that I ate too soon before I ran. Or I just can't run in the middle of the day. Or I'm just still sore from the past weekend. Or all of the above.

The schedule has me doing another 3 miles tomorrow, off friday, then pushing it again with 10 on Saturday.

I think I might skip the 3, and take it easy for the next two days, only doing me weight routine, and hope that I'm strong again for my Saturday morning run.

I knew things were just going too well up until now. But what is life without adversity?

I do feel good that I even got out today, even though it didn't go as planned. Consistency is key I suppose.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Slightly Beat Up

I had a pretty "productive" weekend. Although I'm mentally in great spirits and still full of energy, my calves and hamstrings and pretty beat up.

-Saturday I ran in accordance with my training schedule, 8 miles. Those 8 miles were in 20 degrees over some pretty steep hills in Valley Forge National Park. I was kinda intimidated by this run as I've only ever run this distance a few times, all of them on treadmills with no incline. I'm happy to say though that I paced myself very well and felt strong the entire run. I felt I could have even gone further. In the end I ran it in 1:13:15 or a 9:10 mile average, well below my 10 mile average target. I was happy about that.

I felt really good and not sore at all after the run, so on Sunday:

-I rode my bike 30 miles. My friend invited me to come out and the weather was in the 50's for the first time in a while; I couldn't resist. Those 30 miles once again were very hilly. I felt good and pretty strong considering I had no ridden a bike in a month or so.

By Sunday night I had some soreness in my calves. This morning it was time to do my Monday 3 mile run. I did it, outside once again, but I felt like I was running in sand. I still managed a respectable 25:17 or an 8:26 pace, but it sure didn't feel like that when I was doing it.

Now it's a few hours later and like I said, I feel good, but I am sore. I've been stretching when I can.

This week's weather was supposed to be fairly warm and I've been considering commuting on my bike a few days. I'm just not sure if I'm going to wear myself out adding in riding my bike 20 miles a day for a few days, lifting on Tuesday, then doing the rest of my training runs for the week which total another 18 mile.

This Saturday I have to continue to push myself and get up to 10 miles. The following Saturday is 11 and the next is 12, then is tapers down for a few weeks until the actual Half Marathon.

Overall I'm very happy with my progress and I don't want to wear myself out or worse, injure myself for the race. So I think I might have to suck it up and not ride my bike this week. I guess I have all year for that anyway...

I've also heard that a low cardio slow workout can help your muscles to recover and get rid of the extra lactic acid, so maybe I will ride to work...

As you can see I haven't decided yet.

On another note, I've been trying to get back into posting some sort of pictures in my posts. I'm not really a fan of posting pics of myself in spandex, but what the heck. It's not like there arent already half naked pics of my on this blog:

I managed to snap a pic in the freezing cold before my long run on Saturday. The trick to running in such cold? Layers! Lots of them.

Disclaimer: As you can see despite all the exercising I've been getting I still have an extra 10 or 15 pounds around the middle that I'd like to see go away. But being in weight loss mode and doing this much stuff is hard. I'm hoping it comes back off when I get back on the bike more consistently.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Finish the run or run for time?

I ran my miles today on the treadmill because we got 8 inches of snow overnight. I really wanted to run outside like I did on Monday but it just wasn't in the cards.

I started out rather sluggish, my body not really feeling like moving much, but by the end of my 5 mile training run I was pleasently surprised to see that I beat my best time by over 3 minutes! 5 miles at 45:36 ,that's averaging a 9:07 mile. I felt pretty strong throughout the entire run, but I still feel like maintaining that pace for 8 MORE MILES is a bit in a future.

I have no doubt in my mind that I will finish this half marathon, which was my original goal, but I'm afraid to say I'm making the sketchy mental goal in my head that I can do this thing averaging less than a 10 minute mile. Everything I read says for your first half marathon your goal should just be to finish. For me though, I want more.

Another note, I'm noticing a trend in my running. My outdoor runs, the majority of which have been run in horribly cold weather, have always been faster than my indoor runs. I don't know if that means the treadmill is off, my gps watch is off, or I just truly am faster outside. I certainly don't feel faster outside, if anything quite the opposite. However I have noticed that when on the treadmill, it's easy to get into a groove at one speed and stay there for long periods of time. Outside you don't have the luxury since you're reacting to the terrain and you don't have as much of a constant watch on your speed. I don't really know what this all means if anything, it's just an observation. I will say I much prefer my outdoor runs now, even though they're physically harder on my body. They're just much less boring and a bit more rewarding.

I'm looking forward to spring, or at least no ice on the roads, at which time I think the majority of my runs will be outside, which is a change for me.