It’s Sunday night and I am finally relaxing after a very busy, active, and FUN week and weekend!
We ended the week with an amazing 20 mile run this morning, followed by an even more amazing 3 hour nap 🙂 We had our first 20 mile training run (out of 3) on the schedule and we were worried because we got home late last night after traveling all day, didn’t get much sleep, and it was hot! But it ended up being an almost perfect run. It was only Kevin’s second time running that distance and he did a great job. The only other time was during his first marathon! While he was training for Nashville the most we ran was 19 miles (once!). We only stopped for a minute at mile 12 and 18 when Kevin got a bad cramp. Other than that, we felt great on our nice big loop around Woodbridge. It was difficult at the end, but it always is. 20 miles is a LONG way! We pushed through, fought away the negative thoughts, and got it done.
It feels great to have a 20 miler done with more than 2 months to go before the marathon. It makes me feel confident and I know I have a lot of room to improve, and plenty of time to do it!
One of the things I have been thinking about lately is balance. Training for marathons has consumed my life for the last 3 years, and through it all I have learned a lot about how to balance training with life. In the beginning it was easy to get so caught up with training that I didn’t want to do much else. But now I know that I NEED to do other things in order to stay sane! Yes, I ran 35 miles this week, went to spin class and body pump a few times, but I also spent Monday (the 4th of July) on an all-day geocaching adventure, played Bingo at our favorite restaurant on Tuesday, went shopping on Thursday, went to a Darius Rucker concert and out for drinks on Friday, and spent the day in Atlantic City on Saturday. Who says you don’t have time for work, play, and exercise? You can, it just requires good planning, time management, and balance. Even though I am not “working” right now , I was still able to do all of these things during the school year. And I actually AM working most days on wedding stuff, which is actually a very time consuming (but fun!) job. I am loving it!
At the same time, balance to me is also about knowing how MUCH to exercise and play, but also when to rest too. It’s important to listen to your body and know when enough is enough. There are times when I’m tired from training and don’t want to do much else, so I don’t!
I also wanted to take a few minutes to talk about Body Pump. It’s been a couple weeks since I first tried Body Pump, and it’s safe to say I am now addicted. I went three times this week! Kevin even came with me on Monday, since he was off for the 4th of July. He liked it and said it was very challenging. After three weeks, I’m feeling more confident in class and have started to learn when I am able to handle more weight. I also finally got used to the routine, which they are of course changing this week! The company that puts out Body Pump releases new music/choreography every 3 months to keep it fresh and keep your body from getting too used to the moves. I’m looking forward to trying it tomorrow!
I decided to take my phone into the gym to take a few pictures on Friday. I was feeling brave so I wore my “No Meat Athlete” shirt. The back says “Runs on Plants.” I love this shirt and I love being a vegetarian, but I still find it difficult to talk to certain people about it. I sometimes feel judged when I’m asked about it and it makes me uncomfortable. This was a big step for me! A lot of people looked, but nobody said anything 🙂
This is the equipment that I use for Body Pump.
I use a step bench with 2 risers underneath each side, a mat for floor work, a bar with different sized weight plates and clips on the end, a towel, and water.
The weight that I use currently for most of the class is 5 pounds on each side. For certain muscle groups and exercises (legs, squats, lunges, back) I add 2.5 pound weights to each side. I also have one heavy weight plate (10 lbs.) to use by itself for certain tricep and ab moves. What I like about Body Pump is that even though the routines stay the same for 3 months, you can challenge yourself by adding more weight when you think you’re ready. I also love how it hits all the major muscle groups in one hour, with fun music and instructors to motivate you through it.
Here is my weekly rundown!
- Monday: Body Pump (1 hr.)
- Tuesday: 5 mile run (48:18/9:39 pace)
- Wednesday: Spin class (1 hr.) + Body Pump (1 hr.) <– This was KILLER back to back!
- Thursday: 6 miles of speedwork at the track- the plan was 1 mile warm up, 3 x 1600 meter (1 mile) repeats @ 7:34 w/ 800 meter (1/2 mile) recovery, 1 mile cooldown (Our splits were 7:18, 7:30, 7:25!)
- Friday: 4 mile run (37:41/9:25 pace) + Body Pump (1 hr.)
- Saturday: Rest / walking around Atlantic City
- Sunday: 20 mile run (3:09:22/9:28 pace)
I’m ready for another great balanced week! It’s a cut back week in our running, and we’re heading to Myrtle Beach to Kevin’s parents’ house on Wednesday. I can’t wait!