Friday, October 31, 2014

Pile On the Miles Challenge

Hi everyone! Hope everyone is having a great Friday! Happy Halloween...anyone dressing up? I heard of a few bloggers that are actually going to workout classes dressed up. I think that's awesome but I could never workout in a full on costume. I sweat way to much for that.  I'll be heading down to San Diego to visit family later on today. Super excited I get to go trick-or-treating with my nephew and goddaughter. Who knows I may even dress up. 

So a few days ago I talked about Getting Back On Track. One of the things I talked about was making yourself accountable. I use my planner to write down my workouts but wouldn't it be great if you could possibly win prizes for your hard work though? Well let me share with you a great way to get back on track right before the holidays. Monica from Run Eat Repeat is hosting her annual event... Pile On The Miles. During the entire month of November she encourages and challenges everyone to get out and be active. The goal is to pile on the miles and not the pounds before the holidays start.

  • The challenge is FREE and open to EVERYONE all around the world.
  • It runs for the entire month of November.
  • This is a virtual challenge. Sign up by completing this form. Check back daily to Run Eat Repeat and post your daily workout on her webiste to be entered for daily prizes. 
  • You are only competing with's all about your own personal goals. I am starting my hal marathon training so my goal is to run 60 miles this coming month.
Every day she will raffle of prizes for those participating. So join me and many others as we challenge ourselves to Pile On The Miles. If you have have any questions or want the official rules check her out at Run Eat Repeat. Hope everyone has a wonderful Halloween. Try not to eat too much candy...yeah right!

Will you be joining the challenge?

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Friday Five: Reasons I Love Halloween

Happy Halloween everyone!! Growing up I really liked this holiday but in college boy did I love it! It was all about the costumes and the parties. I remember one time Halloween landed on day light savings and we actually got an extra hour at the bar! That night was pretty out of control. So since this Halloween lands on a Friday I am linking up again with Courtney from Eat Pray Run DC to list the 5 reasons why I love this holiday.

  1. The Candy: Man I have been eating Halloween candy ever since it hit October. I can see why this the dentists favorite holiday. Now as an adult I pick the good candy to give out. Well I start off buying the good candy but sometimes it just magically disappears. 
  2. The Costumes: Who doesn't love a holiday where they can dress like anyone or anything they want. It is a "no judgement" day. You also get to see how creative some people are with their costume design. It's always fun to see what is going to be the go-to costume. For some reason I foresee a lot of Elsas out there from Frozen.
  3. The Parties: I actually met my husband at a Halloween party. He paid no attention to me but then again neither did I. It wasn't until a year later at another Halloween party where we really hit it off. So Halloween parties play a special part in my life because of my husband. 
  4. Pumpkins: I really enjoy carving pumpkins but this year I didn't have any time to get one. I enjoy the whole messy process but I really like baking the seeds. It is such a good snack. And who doesn't enjoy going to a huge pumpkin patch and picking out the best one. Some patches now have rides and food...almost like it's a little carnival/festival. 
  5. Seeing the kids in their costumes: Okay I don't have any kids but I absolutely love seeing my friends post pictures of their children all dressed up. It makes me happy to see them so excited for Halloween. It reminds me of myself when I was a young kid. The cuter the costumes, the better! Can't wait to start seeing the pictures uploaded on social media. I am beyond excited to see my nephew and goddaughter tomorrow. I've never been with them during this time of the year so I am looking forward to this!

Are you dressing up for Halloween?
What do you love about Halloween?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Getting Back On Track

Man I have been a sloth the last two weeks. It happens to the best of us right? I think I've worked out twice in two weeks and I haven't even had any energy to post on my blog. I've started a few posts and then got distracted (pretty much just watched TV), put my computer aside and forgot about it. The working out part is completely unlike me too. I have been finding any excuse not to go to the gym. Well today I woke up and decided "Enough is enough!" So I started planning my Getting Back On Track plan. But first I ran across this saying: 

Oh so fitting right? Things could always be worse like Britney Spears with a shaved head. Luckily my life is not headed in that direction.  So back to getting on track... 

  • Just put on gym clothes: The mere fact that I put on gym clothes motivates me to get back to my regular workout routine. Unfortunately I am still not running (hopefully soon) but there are still other things that can be done to get a good cardiovascular workout. So today I placed on my brightest colors and started running errands. Eventually I made it to the gym and got a great workout in.

I was sweating so much after my workout that my sweat was leaving a trail behind. Kind of gross but it felt great knowing I worked out that hard.

  • Buy new workout gear: Nothing gets me motivated like getting new workout gear. So what did I do? I finally signed up as a VIP member for Fabletics. I have heard so many great reviews about their workout gear but I had been on the fence. Mostly it was because I didn't really understand the membership. So when you join VIP you get the same high caliber workout clothes as competing brands for less. Complete outfits start at only $49.95. Enjoy personalized monthly picks, free shipping and easy returns on all outfits. There's never any obligation to buy. Just skip the month by the 5th to avoid being charged. Sound pretty cool right? So I'll let you know how the clothes turn out. They should arrive in the next few days.

  • Whip out the planner: Yes I have mentioned before how much I love my planner from Erin Condren. This thing just keeps me on track better than my phone calendar ever did. I am a visual person so this thing is filled with color and has pretty much everything I do. I like jotting down my future workouts, completed workouts, weekly goals, monthly goals, meal prep ideas, blog posts ideas, recipes...basically it is a diary of my life.  Since I've had my calendar I've really felt like I've had more control of my life. If you are interested in getting this planner let me know and I can email you a link to get a $10 off coupon. So today I went back at it and laid out my workouts for the week and my weekly goals. 

  • Clean out the kitchen: I like to clean out my kitchen and go grocery shopping for healthy food. Unfortunately I didn't do this today since I am leaving out of town on Friday morning. Grocery shopping would have been pointless since all the food would have gone to waste. I'll be gone for five days. I have enough healthy food to last me one more day for work. 
  • De-clutter your life: For me this is all about finding things that make me happy, organizing my life, and getting rid of the things that are causing me stress. So today I decided to catch up on some reading, updated my planner, went to the gym, and took my dogs out for a walk. Other times I've crafted, gone out for runs, met with friends for drinks/dinner, baked, etc. Of course I am not saying to run away from your problems. Of course those have to be faced with but when life gets stressful (as we all know it does) we all need ways to de-stress.

My dogs bring so much joy into my life. They make me happy when I am down and are always around to cheer me up. I don't have any children so these pups of mine have turned into my furry babies. Spoiled they are!

I don't have an office. The office belongs to my husband, so my de-cluttering planning was done on my kitchen table. At least my "office" is clean. 

These last two weeks I have been in my own little world that I didn't even realize that Fall has officially arrived here. The temps are cooler. No more AC during the day and starting to wear layers. This time of the year is a rarity here in Fresno. It usually goes from Summer to Winter. If you blink you miss Fall around here but seeing the leaves change colors is a true sign. Funny that it took me two weeks to notice this. 

Lastly just wanted to end this post by saying this:

What do you do to get back on track?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

When Life Gets In The Way...

I have made it no surprise that I have had a rough week. As a matter of fact it's been a pretty tough month. I've been under a lot of personal stress and going through an emotional roller coaster. I hate when life gets in the way of my happiness. Not only does it effect my sleeping pattern, eating habits, but also my workout regime (or lack of). 

It has been almost a week since the last time I've set foot in the gym.  And to be honest my body has been so tired that I haven't missed it. Well that is not true. But I am going to keep telling myself that so I feel better about this whole situation. In regards to my eating habits...well I would much rather not discuss all the processed food I had this past week. This past week happened to be Respiratory Care Practitioner Week so there was junk food galore for us every single day at work. Oh and the sleeping? Yeah I am not getting good sleep. Suffering from insomnia some nights and waking up with massive headaches. 

I've been debating sharing my personal trials on my blog but currently I've decided to just ask for prayers. I know some of you may be going through the same things I am going through but I always thought this blog would only be about living a healthy lifestyle, my travels, and my love for running. Who knows though. I may wake up tomorrow and blurt everything out. I think I have been just keeping everything inside so I am not really processing everything. 

Today I ran across a blog post from Marc And Angel Hack Life. It listed great reminders for when you are having a bad day. Here are some of my favorite reminders that really hit home:

  • You are not a victim.
  • You still have many blessings that you can make count.
  • You can learn something important from any situation, if you want to.
  • The right attitude is the one thing you need right now.
  • Because of today’s pain, you can feel the tenderness, beauty and freedom of healing.

Sometimes when life gets tough you just start to think that everyone is out to get you. Nothing seems to get better and everything pretty much seems to turn to sh*t.  What I hate the most when this happens to me is how it just completely derails me. I am just off. I am sluggish, moody, and pretty much at my worst. 

Tomorrow is a new day. Going to breathe and soak in all the wonderful blessings I have in this life and pull through. I am hoping going back to the gym tomorrow morning will get me back to my normal routine. Right now I just miss the old me. I think she is pretty awesome so I hope she comes back soon. :)

How do you handle stress?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Friday Fives: 5 Reasons to Run a Half Marathon

Happy Friday Everyone! I've been in a funk the past few days. I miss my running. It's only been a few days, but I use running as my stress reliever. Recently life has been too much to deal about stress overload! The elliptical isn't cutting it so any suggestions on how to get out of this funk would be greatly appreciated. 

But I didn't want to miss the opportunity to link up again with Courtney from Eat Pray Run DC. The topic for today is the Top 5 reasons to Run ______. I chose running a half marathon because I no longer run full marathons. I say this now but I keep reading other blogger's training for fall full marathons and I must say it is giving me the running itch.

So here are my Top 5 Reasons to Run a Half Marathon:
  1. Meeting new friends: I must admit the running community is pretty awesome. We really like to support one another and really truly want everyone to reach their PR (personal record). I used to not run with others but now I love it! We motivate each other and support one another when we have lousy days. I even like to train with a fun running club from a local running store. 
  2. You inspire others: I never realized how much of an impact I have made on certain people. Some have come up to me thanking me for getting them to enjoy running. They started with running a 5k and are now up to running a half marathon.  It is really a great feeling. It is the greatest domino effect cause then they begin to inspire others. 
  3. The training: It is pretty awesome seeing how much you are able to accomplish when you set your mind to something. My favorite running mantra right now is, "The body can achieve what the mind believes." I remember when I could barely finish a few miles. I would be so winded and out of breath. Then I started seeing a significant change. I was meeting all my benchmarks and improving consistently. It was and continues to be one of the greatest feelings...accomplishment. Although training can be difficult it is so worth it. Just think you are really only "half crazy" since you aren't running 26.2 miles just 13.1 miles.
  4. Eating Anything and Everything: Let's face it, when you are training for a race you are burning a ton of calories. So there is no surprise why I get hungry all the time! I can completely justify eating a humongous burger and fries after running 10 miles. It pretty much evens each other out right?  Obviously can't eat like that everyday but completely justified after doing a long run.
  5. The Bling: I love running across that finish line, getting that sense of accomplishment, and getting that beautiful medal. It is the greatest symbol of hard work. I have such a variety of medals that I have collected throughout the years from boot shaped medals to actual Tiffany's necklaces from running the Nike Women's Marathon. Each one has a story of my training and hard work. Oh and along with the medals you also get the finisher running t-shirt. I've even ran some races where they gave sweaters, ear phones and coffee mugs. Gotta love all the freebies! 

Why do you run half marathons?
How do you get out of a funk?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Treating Injuries: When Enough Is Enough

At one point or another every runner will get injured. Of course some injuries are more severe than others.  When runners do get injured, they all hope they are minor injuries that require the least amount of rest period.  After all my years of running I was scared when this day would come.

When I first started working at my current job I noticed an increased amount of pain in my heel. I knew standing on my feet for 12.5 hour shifts was the main contributor for this. So I got good work shoes and the problem was fixed...or so I thought. Fast forward a few years and the pain came back. I tried new work shoes right around the same time the pain came back.  Here I thought I could save a few buck by switching shoes...lesson learned. I recently switched back to my original work shoes but the damage had already been done.

Last month the pain began to move over to my arch as well as my heel, still only on the left foot. I took a few rest days and lowered my weekly running mileage. It seemed to help but as soon as I just stepped in any type of shoes my pain would come back.  I bit the bullet and called the podiatrist. I asked around and multiple friends recommend one that actually had an active lifestyle like me. He hikes and runs so I knew he would be a good match for me as well.  Right from the start he knew how important my running was for me. After the initial physical assessment he did an ultrasound on my heels with a big old machine.

Diagnosis: Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick tissue on the bottom of the foot. This tissue is called the plantar fascia. It connects the heel bone to the toes and creates the arch of the foot.  Plantar fasciitis is a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your very first steps in the morning. Once your foot limbers up, the pain of plantar fasciitis normally decreases, but it may return after long periods of standing (like 12.5 hours shifts) or after getting up from a seated position.  Plantar fasciitis is particularly common in runners, people who are overweight, or people who wear shoes with inadequate support.

I had my suspicion it was this all along. I just needed confirmation. After all we live in a world where you can Google anything! Next came the part I dreaded: How is it going to be treated and how long will I have to not run. My right heel had very mild plantar fasciitis. The left heel however was border line severe. He said he could see my arch had actually dropped slightly compared to the right foot. This scared me, but he quickly alleviated my fears. 

Right away I got two cortisol shots. The right heel just received a little bit since it wasn't as bad as the left. Funny story as soon as he attempted to inject my left heel the pain went away. He said it actually happens all the time. Hah! The shots were painful. The left more than the right. I even had a little bruise on each injection site. Usually cortisol shots are done every 3-6 months. I am hoping I don't have to do them again...fingers crossed. Next was getting my customized orthotics.

I tried to pretend it was a different type of pedicure. But without a nail polish change or massage that was hard to do. The orthotics are scheduled to arrive in about two weeks. Can't wait to get them! Then I can start running again. I know I'll have to slowly integrate my running again. A two week wait shouldn't be that bad. In the mean time I foresee spin classes, swimming, stairclimber, and eliptical in my cardio routine. 

In the mean time I was sent home with simple stretches to try and was also told to take some over the counter anti-inflammatory meds. I have a follow up appointment in three weeks. Hoping all goes well and my heel pain starts to subside. 

Best part of this situation is that I now have an excuse to get daily foot massages from my husband. Let the healing begin!

What running injury have you encountered? 
How long was your recovery time?

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Silent Sunday: My Weekend In Pictures

This weekend the hubby and I went to LA. We stayed in Venice Beach with our friends.  Must say I had a great time despite loosing my credit card, license, and some cash on the first day! It all worked out though. I was still able to get in a great run, eat some excellent food, and consume some alcohol. Probably drank more this weekend than I have all year. Hope everyone had a great weekend. Enjoy pictures of my weekend...I tried to put them in chronological order.

What was the best part of your weekend?