I Come Back Even Stronger: August 2020

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August was relatively busy in a good way. 2 trips to mom, one with a side trip. More day trips.  Slight increase in running. Slight increase in walking, too. Made an effort to get in more steps. I collected my mug from June’s virtual xc runs (with a side trip on that trip too).

August’s song is throwin’ it way back, but man I remember belting this song out when I was young. It’s a classic — Helen Reddy’s “I Am Woman”.

You can bend but never break me
‘Cause it only serves to make me
More determined to achieve my final goal
And I come back even stronger
Not a novice any longer

These lyrics really speak to me! Do you still have goals? Has 2020 broken you or made you stronger? Do you feel that you’ve grown because of every thing you’ve gone through in 2020?

I did it. I didn’t always like it.

Getting in scheduled runs
I’ve slowly begun to try for 4 runs a week — some weeks, anyway. When I feel like it. So upping the ante just a bit. A virtual race (in September) isn’t the same as a real race, but I can still challenge myself a bit.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
I record them here. Someday I’ll get back to journaling!

Grade Earned: F

Dynamic Warmup
Dynamic warmups were often really short — 5 minutes — but every little bit helps. As we merge into Fall and the mornings are cooler, it should be easier to do longer warmups. And necessary with cooler temps!

I’ve even done a little Yin Yoga some mornings before a run. In fact, I’ve also filmed three short Yin Yoga Pre Run Warmup videos! I was inspired. Not quite sure yet when I’ll be sharing those.

Grade Earned: A

Foam Rolling
Mostly just foam rolling before runs — once or twice after a run too.

Grade Earned: B+

Nutrition
Nutrition has been meh. Not terrible, not great, and the scale reflects that. I already feel the pull of wanting to eat more as the weather heads towards Winter. It’s natural . . . but some clothes are feeling a wee bit snug, sometimes (because I go back & forth around a few pounds).

Grade Earned: B-

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? I need to schedule that appointment. We are in a very good situation with COVID right now, but I could see that changing with more time spent indoors and school restarting.

Grade Earned: F

Getting stronger with a little hiking & extra walking

Cross Training
Stationary cycling fell off the grid this month, but the rest is still going pretty strong. There’s only so many hours in a day & I find I need to be careful not to overdo things.

Grade Earned: A

August 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. A couple of Fs again, but mostly August was a busy month and I did the best I could with the time I had and by listening to my body.

August Goals:

  • Run 4 x week. Y/N. Sometimes. Some weeks I just wasn’t feeling it, so I didn’t. Other weeks, I did.
  • Set an intention for each run. Y.  Sometimes it’s after the fact, though. Not as effective that way. I need to work on that!
  • Finish the irest course I started. Y. I did, then discovered that there was an audio book version on Audible. So I bought that (I’ve got a lot of credits), because I enjoy the practices (which are included with the audio book).
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. I’m trying, but it’s crept up just a bit beyond where I’m comfortable. It seems the Winter creep has started early. So Y to eating intuitively; unfortunately Y to creep, too. I mostly know what I need to do — but I need to do it. #youfeelme?
  • Add in more Pilates when I can.Y.I feel that Pilates does helps to shape my body. Yoga can be really tough, but most Pilates (done correctly) is tough in a different way. They are similar, but not the same, and I enjoy both. The problem is always time!

Which leads me to September Goals:

  • Run 4 x week. It all depends on how I feel. I’m enjoying the Peloton Bootcamps and runs — still have to try one of the walk/runs — so it adds a little variety to my life. Plus the weather should make outdoor running more fun again.
  • Set an intention for each run — before the run! It’s not really an intention if you set it afterwards, now is it?
  • Meditate when I get up. Meditating first thing in the morning is centering and sets me up for a calmer morning.
  • Explore new places when I visit my mom. There are quite a few places that are pretty much on the way. Easier to explore on my own, and then size up if it’s somewhere we want to go back to.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. In the last few months my choices haven’t always been the best. I can feel that in some of my clothes — and I don’t like that feeling!
  • Look around for the next virtual to motivate me. I don’t need to do #allthevirtuals, but it’s not bad to have something to work towards sometimes. Makes life feel a bit more normal. The cool Fall weather is my fun season to run (if it’s not raining).

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Fighter: July 2020

 

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July was actually rather busy. A 30 hour meditation course. 2 trips to mom. A fun daytrip.  Family Zoom call. Routine vet visit for Lola (Bandit needs one, too). Filming videos (which lately seems to always be a struggle).

Myself and my loved ones are healthy. My mom tires a lot easier — as does Lola — to be expected at both their ages, but not always easy to witness.

July’s song is Fighter by Christina Aguilera. I don’t really know many Christina Aguilera songs, although I do know she has a powerful voice. Has anyone else noticed how much this lyric resembles Kelly Clarkson’s “What doesn’t kill you”?

Makes me that much stronger
Makes me work a little bit harder
It makes me that much wiser
So thanks for making me a Fighter

2020 has not been kind to us, and yet — it’s the hard times we go through that make us grow. As much as we might wish we didn’t have to go through hard, painful, times, they shape the people we become.

A little irony with the “happy” in the paragraph below — my face matches my top!!!

Getting in scheduled runs
I’m still happy with 3 x week for the forseeable future. It gives me more time for my stationary bike, strength training, and Yoga. I kept thinking I would go a little longer for my long run, but then someone turned the thermostat to hot and humid.

Except I started to feel run down last week, so this last week of July I’m going to skip a run. Or two. We’ll see. Trying to get ahead of whatever is going on.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
Yeah, still not happening..

Grade Earned: F

Dynamic Warmup
I was doing great with this — I’d even say I was on a streak. Until a couple of very hot and humid days when I totally skipped the warm up. Bugs may have been the reason.

Grade Earned: A-

Foam Rolling
Still only rolling before a run — at least that it something that I have not skipped (so far).

Grade Earned: B

Nutrition
Nutrition has been pretty good, but as always, room for improvement. The older I get the less I can eat. It is what it is.

Grade Earned: B

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? This could end up being the longest I go without a haircut — which is saying something, I’ve actually gone 5 months before.

Grade Earned: F

Just chillin’ with Bandit & Yoga

Cross Training
Cross training is my super power, apparently. Yoga, strength training, Pilates, stationary cycling.

Grade Earned: A+

June 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. A couple of Fs again, but mostly July was a busy month and I did the best I could with the time I had.

July Goals:

  • Continue exploring Peloton App. Y. I’ve tried one class (at least) from a lot of the different categories, although there are probably some categories I won’t try. There’s definitely still more to explore.
  • Continue running 3 x week. Y. I have continued my outside running streak. Definitely not always easy with this hot summer! I’m giving myself a pass on skipping a run/s this week. It was needed.
  • Set an intention for each run. Y.  I won’t lie: sometimes I struggle with coming up with an intention. Sometimes I struggle with remembering what the intention was! (read more about intentions here).
  • Continue almost daily foam rolling. N. I foam rolled before my runs. That’s all.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Weight is basically in maintenance mode, and that’s okay.
  • Learn more about meditation.Y. I took a 30 hour Beginning Meditation Coach course, which I really enjoyed.
  • Extend either a weekday or long run. Y. I signed up for virtual trail runs this month (with the swag being pottery), and we’re assigned a different distance each week. 
  • Complete virtual July 4th race.Y. I even managed to do it on the fourth. 

Which leads me to August Goals:

  • Run 4 x week. I plan to take some of the Peloton bootcamps, and that will involve treadmill running. So it won’t be a lot extra, and it’ll be mill miles, but miles are miles. Doesn’t have to happen every week but that’s what I’ll shoot for. Gonna be flexible with it – depends how I feel.
  • Set an intention for each run. I enjoy this goal!
  • Finish the irest course I started. I’ve been into something called Yoga Nidra for a while. It’s part relaxation, part meditation. irest is a particular form based on Yoga Nidra — and I signed up for the Great Courses for free so I could take this course. But I only have a month! I’m halfway through so I’m sure I’ll finish it before my free trial is up.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. A permanent goal.
  • Add in more Pilates when I can. I really enjoy Pilates. There’s a lot of benefits to runners from practicing it. Even just 10 minutes. It’s just hard to squeeze in. Strength training was a bit lacking at the end of last July, and with less going on in August, I’d definitely like to be more regular about it. 

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Let’s Lift Each Other Up: June 2020

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The weather in June was all over the place. Mostly lovely, so I can’t complain. A couple of weekends were so chilly that one day I had to take my Yoga inside. Then it heated up quickly! Luckily I picked the right spot for my Yoga platform. It’s nice and shady and even on days in the low 90s I am comfortable back there.

Now the ants are a different story . . .

I am taking a break from stronger lyrics (strong is my word for 2020), but “Hey Girl” from Lady Gaga & Florence Welch (a song not familiar to me) caught my eye — I thought it was a good message for the times.

Hey girl, hey girl
We can make it easy if we lift each other
Hey girl, hey girl
We don’t need to keep on one-in’ up another

Although aimed at women, it’s a good message for everyone. Stop tearing people down to make yourself feel better. We all rise together.

Chasing rainbows & trying to stay cool (literally)

Getting in scheduled runs
I’m still happy with 3 x week for the forseeable future. It gives me more time for my stationary bike, strength training, and Yoga. I kept thinking I would go a little longer for my long run, but then someone turned the thermostat to hot and humid.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
Maybe this sections just needs to go away . . . like many of us think about 2020.

Grade Earned: F

Dynamic Warmup
I’ve been doing good with a pre-, and usually a post-run stretch, thanks to Peloton.

Grade Earned: A+

Foam Rolling
I’ve been exploring a lot of new things, so I’m back to foam rolling only before I run. I know my body would be very happy if I tried for more again. It still needs to be a goal!

Grade Earned: B

Nutrition
Mostly good. The extreme heat towards the end of the month had me not so hungry. Definitely room for improvement though. Isn’t there always?

Grade Earned: B

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? While we can get haircuts again, my hairdresser is actually opening a new salon. Which hasn’t happened yet. It’s braid season; I can wait.

Grade Earned: F

Yoga inside, outside, plus stationary cycling & more!

Cross Training
Running less means I have more time for other fitness activities, which I enjoy. Yet it still seems as though there’s not enough hours in a day to get everything done!

Grade Earned: A+

June 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. A couple of Fs again, but mostly June was a decent month.

June Goals:

  • Continue exploring Peloton App. Y. There’s a lot to love, but there are some things I’m not as fond of. Nothing’s perfect, right?
  • Continue running 3 x week. Y. I also made an effort to keep those runs outside — it wasn’t easy when the second half of the month was stacked with heat waves but I persevered.
  • Set an intention for each run. Y.  I like to work towards goals, and since I don’t actually have a running goal right now, having an intention for every run gives me a “goal” (read more about intentions here).
  • Continue almost daily foam rolling. N. I foam rolled before my runs. That’s all.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Weight is basically in maintenance mode, and that’s okay.
  • Explore a Backbend Course Y/N. As I wrote last month, I couldn’t find a specific build to Wheel course. I should have just modified this goal to work on strengthening my arms and core — which I did. I have a feeling that it will take a lot longer than a month, and may not be a pose that works for me. We’ll talk again at the end of the year.
  • Take the tests for the online Reiki course I’m taking. N. I am taking a meditation course in July. I’m still practicing Reiki on myself, and when I have time/remember, the dogs. Even occasionally Mr. Judy.

Which leads me to July Goals:

  • Continue exploring Peloton App. I haven’t tried a meditation yet. I’ve only done one Yoga class. Then there’s the Artist series that Kim @ Kookyrunner turned me on to.
  • Continue running 3 x week. If it ain’t broke . . .
  • Set an intention for each run. I enjoy this goal!
  • Learn more about meditation. I’ve been meditating for several years. I enjoy creating meditations for my YouTube channel (here). I’d been looking into meditation teacher trainings — but when someone I’d been following offered a shorter (30 hour) , discounted course, I signed up. Hopefully I’ll be adding more meditations with what I learn.
  • Extend either a weekday or long run. I will admit, summer running is not my jam. I have extended some weekday runs. I’d like to run a little longer for my long runs, but I just haven’t been feeling it with the weather.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. I think this is another permanent goal.
  • Complete virtual July 4th race. This may not happen in July — it might have even already happened! 

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Getting Strong Now: May 2020

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Mother Nature sure seemed confused in May

May blew in with very unwanted snow, but it went out with some lovely Summer weather.

Practicing Yoga on the Yoga platform in a skirt & with dogs

From strong to stronger and the iconic Rocky song “Gonna Fly Now”:

Getting strong now
Won’t be long now
Getting strong now

Gonna fly now
Flying high now
Gonna fly, fly, fly

Running takes a back burner for now, and hopefully I can focus on getting stronger. Now is the time to do those things you always say you’d do if only you had more time.

Getting in scheduled runs
I’m settling into 3 x week for the forseeable future. Unless maybe I decide to try a Peloton Bootcmp. 3 x week gives me lots of flexibility to move runs around!

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
Still not journaling. Maybe I don’t want to remember this year next year! Seriously, though, the tough times are what help us to grow.

Grade Earned: F

Dynamic Warmup
I signed up for the Peloton App back when it was free for 90 days. I’ve been checking out their dynamic warmups. At some point I’ll write a review of the app, although seriously, I feel like I’m the last person to try it. 🙂

Grade Earned: A+

Foam Rolling
I slacked off a bit in the foam rolling department. I’m still rolling, but not quite as often. Probably because I’ve had to start filming stuff for my YouTube channel again!

Grade Earned: A-

Nutrition
Nutrition has been ok. I’m maintaining; no really, I’m plateauing, bouncing back and forth between small gains and losses. Which is fine. Except I would like to lose just a few pounds. I guess I don’t want to badly enough yet.

Grade Earned: B

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? Again, see above. I suppose I should take this section out, it ain’t happening in the near future (although the chiropractor is open). And the salon should open soon. I don’t think I can go a whole year without a haircut!

Grade Earned: F

Yoga everywhere

Cross Training
I’ve continued to mix things up with plenty of Yoga, short Peloton rides (except not on a Peloton bike of course — I wish!!!), and strength training.

Grade Earned: A

I was able to cherry pick a day with great weather for my virtual race

May 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A. Despite 2 Fs, and not meeting a couple of goals, all in all May was a pretty good month, including one virtual race (my first).

May Goals:

  • Add in Lean & Lovely once a week. Y. It’s a Kettlebell program I’ve used before with good results.
  • Continue running 3 x week, adding in more mileage. Y/N. I ran 3 x week (except one week when I didn’t feel good), but haven’t really upped the mileage. By the time I wanted to, Summer had arrived!
  • Strength train 2-3 x week. Y. A no brainer since I started a Kettlebell program.
  • Continue almost daily foam rolling. Y/N. Not as much as in April, although more than just running days.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Weight is basically in maintenance mode, and that’s okay.
  • Explore a Backbend Course N. Backbends are actually really good for my Dosha (Kapha), but I didn’t get around to it in May. I worked on some other courses, one of which actually had to do with less intense backbends. So kind of a Y, except I didn’t do that with this goal in mind. Glad I made the goal. I’ll get to it!
  • Take the tests for the online Reiki course I’m taking. N. I began to study more, but never quite got around to the tests. Yet.

Which leads me to June Goals:

  • Continue exploring Peloton App. I have a feeling I’ll keep the Peloton App. There’s a lot I like about it (but some things not so much). While it’s free, though, I’m definitely going to take advantage of it.
  • Continue running 3 x week. Still just maintaining a running base.
  • Set an intention for each run. Everything in life should be done with intention (it’s called mindfulness!).
  • Explore a backbend course in one of the Yoga memberships I have. I looked last weekend and couldn’t find a specific course, but I did download a lot of classes on backbends from a couple of Yoga apps I use. Backbends are definitely good for me, so I’m going to work a bit more on them! I also need to focus on arms and core, because one of my goals is to do Wheel — I think it’s a combination of not enough strength (there’s that strong thing again) and fear — of failure? Of hitting my head? — that has been holding me back from doing wheel.
  • Continue almost daily foam rolling. It’s amazing how much of a difference this makes for me.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. It’s hard to believe, but it’s actually been a year since I stopped tracking what I eat. I never thought I’d get to that point in my life!
  • Take the tests for the online Reiki course I’m doing. Okay, I admit Reiki is a bit woo-woo even for me. I do believe that there’s a lot more to life than just our physical bodies, though, and I have actually found the course really fascinating. I’m not so sure I’ll get to it in June, either, but it’s a good goal and we’ll see.

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Then a hero comes along: April 2020

April continued to be a challenging month. It would really help to have Spring-like weather, but it’s not unusual for us to miss out on Spring and unfortunately this was another year that that’s true.

But Spring always comes, and that is a hopeful sign

The flowers are blooming, the trees are slowly beginning to leaf out, the lawns are greening up, every once in a while we come across a blue Robin’s egg. Sure signs that there is a season to everything, and that there’s always hope in the world if you look for it.

Taking a slight break from songs with strong in the title, to songs with strong in the lyrics with Mariah Carey’s “Hero”:

So when you feel like all hope is gone
Look inside you and be strong
And you’ll finally see the truth
That a hero lies in you

You know I’m all about looking within (yup, that’s what GoWithYin Yoga is a play on). Or as Dorothy had to learn, the power is within you all along.

Getting in scheduled runs
Although I still seemed to struggle with recovery from runs, unlike March, I didn’t miss any runs. So there’s that. Can’t really decide if I need to train for the June half or not. I caught a video from one of the coaches saying he’s still training as if it will not be cancelled.

I am having a hard time deciding if it’s really worth upping my mileage right now. Considering it’s a race where they have to bus you up a mountain . . . even if they decided to hold it, I can’t see doing it. It may be a #firstworldproblem, but yes, it makes me sad.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
Pretty much total failure. I guess because I was so busy with 21 Days of Yoga.

Grade Earned: F

Dynamic Warmup
I’ve been very good about the dynamic warmup. It’s all part of the great nasal breathing experiment.

Grade Earned: A+

It may not feel good while you’re doing it, but you’ll thank yourself the next day

Foam Rolling
I’ve been great with foam rolling too. I got back to foam rolling most days, sometimes twice a day on the days I run. I just realized how much better I feel when I do it.

Grade Earned: A+

Nutrition
I don’t really feel as though I’ve been eating that badly, although I notice feeling hungrier than usual. My weight stayed pretty steady through April, although there was an uptick last week. Maybe it’s because I’m running slower? Fewer miles? Or is it just stress?

Grade Earned: B

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? Again, see above. I suppose I should take this section out, it ain’t happening in the near future (although the chiropractor is open).

Grade Earned: F

I live for the days I can do Yoga on our deck!

Cross Training
I’ve been doing fairly well with the cross training: Yoga, strength training, stationary bike, dogwalks. I haven’t been hitting it hard, my body just hasn’t felt up to that for whatever reason.

Grade Earned: A

April 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A-. I guess for a lot of us in April it became apparent we’re in this for the long haul.

April Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. Y. I’m fairly certain I got in at least 2 strength training sessions a week. I often wanted to do more, but my body just kept asking for rest.
  • Continue running 3 x week, adding in more mileage. Y. I upped my middweek runs but kept my long run the same distance — until last weekend, when I did 9 miles.
  • Plan out long runs (in case I run the June half). N. Came to the conclusion one way or another the race is not happening.
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Y. High five for doing it pre-run, post-run, and most non-running days too.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Weight is creeping up just a little. Maybe all I really need is some Vitamin D in the form of sunshine. Sunshine makes everything better, right?
  • Release my 21 Days of Yoga Challenge! Y. I had no idea how much work this would be when the idea came to me shortly after my Dad passed. Thank you to everyone who gave it a try!
  • Carve out a time to read non-fiction daily. Y. Not too surprisingly, mostly Yoga related. Still so much to learn.

Which leads me to May Goals:

  • Add in Lean & Lovely once a week. This is more of a push program with kettlebells I’ve had great results with in the past. I need to lift a little heavier — occasionally. Otherwise I still love working out with Pahla B here. I’m just in awe of how much material she continually shares.
  • Continue running 3 x week, adding in more mileage. I’m not sure how much mileage I’ll be adding in. Maybe I’ll go up to 10 miles. Maybe I won’t. Stay tuned.
  • Strength Train 2-3 x week. That’s my gold standard. Listening to my body is the most important thing.
  • Explore a backbend course in one of the Yoga memberships I have. I can’t do wheel. I can do Camel, I can do Bow, but Wheel still eludes me. It may just be a strength problem, but I know that backbends are good for me, so it seems like a good goal. It could take me a long time to good there, but you already know I’m patient. Besides it totally jives with my Strong theme for 2020. How did I know we’d all need to be so strong?
  • Continue almost daily foam rolling. It’s amazing how much of a difference this makes for me.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. A slight uptick on the weight the end of March. Just a couple of pounds can make a big difference in how my clothes fit (yup, that’s what happens when you’re 5’1″ — happy I haven’t started to shrink yet!).
  • Take the tests for the online Reiki course I’m doing. Okay, I admit Reiki is a bit woo-woo even for me. I try to keep an open mind about things, and for me, it’s not always about the science. I find it really fascinating, though, and I like learning. I might sign up for the animal Reiki course too. Couldn’t hurt, those furkids ain’t getting any younger.

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Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Stronger than the Fear: March 2020

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March was a doozy, wasn’t it? It didn’t start out well for me, not feeling well. I get a non specific virus like this often in Spring (relatively sure it wasn’t COVID19 but we’ll never know). I rest, I get better, then out of the blue I feel a little worse, and back and forth for weeks.

I was a little disappointed because I’d really tried hard to clean up my nutrition. For the record, I was never very sick. Maybe that’s the clue — while I still got sick, it was extremely mild. Maybe due to making an effort to eat healthier because I know that this time of year I’m always vulnerable.

Truthfully, if my family and loved ones come through this okay, if we have a roof over our head (and four walls, please!), and enough to eat, missing some racing is a small price to pay.

These lyrics from Kelly Clarkson’s “Stronger” (which I’ve always loved) seem very appropriate to the times:

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn’t mean I’m lonely when I’m alone

Especially the part about not being lonely when I’m alone. I know that a lot of people are really struggling with the lack of social connectedness right now, and I am sorry for the many that #thestruggleisreal.

It doesn’t mean that I love doing everything alone — no. It’s just that I’m okay being on my own. I’ve had a lot of practice, having lived far away from relatives for many decades (until now, although still far away from my brother and my MIL), and also spent a lot of time separated from Mr. Judy over the decades due to his work.

I think it’s a good thing to be comfortable with being by yourself; not trying to be preachy here, just that it’s a good life skill no matter what’s going on in the world.

 

Running all the hills right now anyway

 

Getting in scheduled runs
Except for the one week I was sick, I kept up with running 3 x week. Missed one long run. Didn’t really matter as I ended up not being in training mode anyway.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
Again I got spotty with recording my runs. I’ve been working on a big project for my YouTube Channel (which you can visit here), and it’s kept me very busy. Then there was that pesky COVID19 thing.

Grade Earned: B-

Dynamic Warmup
It’s (mostly) getting warmer, so I’ve been doing well with my dynamic warmup — as I wait for my Garmin to find a signal.

Grade Earned: A

Getting back into more frequent foam rolling. Does a body good.

 

Foam Rolling
I have actually been doing well with foam rolling, too. Even occasionally foam rolling on days I don’t run. My long run on Friday was physically very tough, and my hamstrings were complaining. I did yoga, I did a long foam rolling session, and I was very surprised (and happy) to wake up feeling okay the next day.

Grade Earned: A

The hardest part about delivery is finding healthy options. This wasn’t so much healthy, but it was yummy!

 

Nutrition
My weight is hanging steady (even if it’s a few pounds over where I’d like it to be). I really have to stop doing my long runs at lunch time, though! By the time I get home, even with a post run snack, I’ve got a serious case of the rungries. It isn’t pretty.

Grade Earned: A-

Support

  • Massage? Nope. We all know why.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? See massage.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? Again, see above. It’s probably going to be a while. It’s been about 6 weeks since my last cut — even though that’s the “correct” amount of time for me for a cut, I very rarely get it done that often. Sometimes I go months. And I do like to grow it out a bit in the summer to braid it.

Grade Earned: B

Cross Training
I’ve been riding the stationary bike fairly regularly. I was getting back into some strength training too, though somehow I fell off of it the last week of March. I’ve done a little pilates here and there. So hard to squeeze it all in!

Grade Earned: A-

March 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A-. There’s always room for improvement, but March, despite the craziness, went pretty well.

March Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. Y. I’m going to say I met this goal — when I felt healthy. I felt meh off & on in March, so I rested when I needed to.
  • Continue running 3 x week and maintaining my base. Y. Again goal met when I was feeling good. I only had one week with just one run, and only one missed long run.
  • Begin to write half marathon plans. N. No reason to yet.
  • Start practicing at the Yoga Studio that’s close to me. N. For obvious reasons that didn’t happen..
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Y. High five for doing it pre-run and some non-running days too.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Weight is staying pretty stable, but it’s on the high end. I wouldn’t say I’m overindulging in sweets, but I would say there have been more than I need (or burn off). Need to get a handle on that; clothes are just a tiny bit snugger.
  • Meal plan on the weekends! Y. Not only did I meal plan, I even began to meal prep too. Until COVID19 hit . . . then simple grocery shopping sucked up a lot more time than usual.
  • Maybe a shorter race? N. Again, not my fault. I had actually planned to try for a new-to-me race; it was not to be.

Which leads me to April Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. I’m really shooting for those 3 x week, even if one session is just 10 minutes.
  • Continue running 3 x week, adding in more mileage. I’ve slowly been adding distance to my runs, both the long runs and the midweek runs.
  • Plan out long runs (in case I run the June half). I like to look at the race date, and work backwards from there. Even for the June half, it’s time — starting early gives me that wiggle room.
  • Release my 21 Days of Yoga Challenge! Um, maybe. Depends on what happens in life. I’ve been thrown some curve balls with this, again, but we’re getting closer to it.
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Would love to foam roll at least occasionally on days that I don’t run.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Although I’d love to drop just a little weight, I’m still maintaining fairly well.
  • Carve out a time to read non-fiction daily. I read fiction (for the most part) before I go to sleep. I have a lot of nonfiction books waiting for me. Something always seems to get in the way of setting a regular time during the day to just read. Maybe the first step is to decide how long I will give myself.

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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That Made Me Stronger: February 2020

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I was not familiar with Stevie Nicks’ song, That Made Me Stronger. It’s true, though, that the tough times we go through make us stronger. You have to go through it; no one else can do it for you — they can only support you.

The last 6 months? Hard. So hard. Did they make me stronger? Did they change me? Time will tell.

Can you write this for me
He says no, you write your songs yourself
That made me stronger
It made me hold on to me

Getting in scheduled runs
I kept with my 3 x week runs. Which is not to say February didn’t make it challenging. Much less travel — but still one trip to my mom’s. Not much snow — but plenty of ice. I’m pretty proud that most of those runs occurred outside. I began to lengthen the long runs.

Grade Earned:  A+

Recording my runs
After the intensity of January, I fell almost completely off journaling the first couple of weeks of February. I did run, obviously. I have the blog to go back and fill in the blanks. Which is part of why I write a detailed recap of my runs on the blog. It’s my backup.

Grade Earned: B-

Dynamic Warmup
It gets done. The length varies, but I do move my body before running. Cold rubber bands break when they’re stretched. You don’t want to break your legs, right?

Grade Earned: A

Foam Rolling
I haven’t moved back to more frequent foam rolling, but I really am committed to foam rolling before I get out there and run. If I wait til afterward — well, the stretching doesn’t even always happen afterward.

Grade Earned: A

I think my family was trying to fatten me up!

Nutrition
There was more eating out than normal in February, especially my birthday weekend. Not only did I have 2 cakes, chocolate covered strawberries, and pizza, but there was sushi, too! Plus some of my husband’s tempura veggies. The secret to indulging? Don’t wait til the proverbial Monday to get back to healthy eating.

Grade Earned: A-

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I got a haircut for this class, but it kind of back fired. I’d have been better off waiting. I ended up pulling it into a ponytail to tame it anyway.

Support

  • Massage? No. No birthday massage for me. 😦
  • Chiropractor Appointment? Still no.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? No — I actually had 2 in 2 months! My hairdresser seriously thought that second appointment was a mistake. And that is the last time that will happen!

Grade Earned: B-

Cross Training
My recent bone scan (my first) came back with mildly low bone density. I’m sure that my very low Vitamin D levels are to blame. I am really making an effort to get in that strength training 3 x week! I was successful this month.

In addition, I have also begun to ride my stationary bike before breakfast several times a week. When I run on the treadmill, I also use it as a warm up. Obviously there is lots of Yoga.

Grade Earned: A

January 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . an A-. There’s always room for improvement, but February went pretty well.

February Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. Y. February was a busy month. But I really committed to trying to get in more strength training and was successful.
  • Continue running 3 x week and maintaining my base. Y. No, I didn’t add in a fourth day, and probably won’t for a while, but I did begin lengthening my long run.
  • Start practicing at the Yoga Studio that’s close to me. N. Let’s just say life has thrown a few more curve balls my way so it didn’t happen.
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Y. Still just pre-run, but that’s the most important to me.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y.There was more eating out than planned in February, not to mention those dreary end of Winter days are testing my resolve, but I am proud of continuing to maintain my weight intuitively. People who’ve never struggled with their weight will never understand why it’s even an issue for anyone, but others will get it.
  • Meal plan on the weekends! Y. Are you shocked? Yes, I started to meal plan on the weekends again! If you fail to plan, you plain to fail, never forget that!

Which leads me to March Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. I’m really shooting for those 3 x week, even if one session is just 10 minutes.
  • Continue running 3 x week, adding in more mileage. If I’m motivated, maybe I’ll add in a fourth day. My guess is that won’t happen anytime soon. Still. Other fish to fry.
  • Begin to write half marathon plans. I like to look at the race date, and work backwards from there. Even for the June half, it’s time — starting early gives me that wiggle room.
  • Start practicing at the Yoga Studio that’s close to me. Um, maybe. Depends on what happens in life.
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Would love to foam roll at least occasionally on days that I don’t run.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Although I’d love to drop just a little weight, I’m still maintaining fairly well.
  • Meal plan on the weekends! Planning makes almost everything better. Just sayin’.
  • Maybe a shorter race? It’s been months since I’ve raced. Time to remind these legs that they can turn over faster.

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

This week I am also joining up with the new Runners’ Roundup linkup.

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Stronger Every Day: January 2020

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Looking through songs with Strong as a theme (or in the Title) was surprising. Many seem to be about breakups, including this month’s song, for which I’m going old school with Chicago’s “Stronger Every Day” — the refrain spoke to me. Of course I love the song, and maybe break up songs are kind of appropriate, as I’m learning to let my father go to a better place — I wrote that last before my Dad had even passed away. It’s a great anthem, anyway!

Feeling stronger every day
(You know I’m alright now)

Running where & when I could

Getting in scheduled runs
Last week was understandably low on mileage, but movement is ingrained with me. Although I only got in 2 runs, I continued my step goal streak. My Garmin has my daily step goal low, about 7500. I averaged about 9700 steps a day last week, and some of them included walks inside the senior living community because it was so cold (or raining) outside.

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
My new planner (Clever Fox, Amazon Affiliate link here) has definitely kept me more organized and more focused. It can still be a struggle to take the time to record my runs when I’m busy, but I’ve started out the year right. Well, until last week, when I completed stopped using the planner. I’m giving myself a pass on that for obvious reasons.

Grade Earned: A

Dynamic Warmup
There’s always some dynamic warmup. The duration varies, but something is always better than nothing!

Grade Earned: A

Foam Rolling
I actually brought my foam roller to my mom’s — and used it! There’s not a lot of space there, but my body thanks me when I use it.

Grade Earned: A

Tried to make healthy choices most of the time

Nutrition
Nutrition got better, but last week was a bit of a struggle. There were quite a few days with few healthy choices. As I said to Mr. Judy, I’m okay with the occasional not so healthy meal, but I don’t like a steady diet of it. I did bring food with me, which was very helpful, but there were days we were at my sister’s house, and I had to make the best choices I could.

Grade Earned: A-

Support

  • Massage? No.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? Still no.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? No, but I do need to book the next one.

Grade Earned: B-

Cross Training
I was getting back to more strength training, until last week, when there was none. I could definitely have done bodyweight exercises, or used the gym at my mom’s, but I walked and I did yoga and I called it a day. Most days were just busy, or emotionally taxing.

Grade Earned: B

January 2020  gets  . . . 
. . . a B+. I’m definitely not beating myself up. I did what I could, I was there for my family, and I tried not to push myself too hard. I rested when I didn’t feel well, and so far, knock on wood, I’m still feeling okay. Apparently I haven’t made any monthly goals since November, so I’m overdue.

Which leads me to February Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. Definitely time to get back into strength training! Hopefully it can become more of a habit now that life is *hopefully* settling down.
  • Continue running 3 x week and maintaining my base. If I’m motivated, maybe I’ll add in a fourth day. My guess is that won’t happen anytime soon. I need some recovery time!
  • Start practicing at the Yoga Studio that’s close to me. I am hoping that now that life is a bit more normal, maybe I’ll either finally do some subbing or get at least one class of my own.
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Would love to foam roll at least occasionally on days that I don’t run.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Although I’d love to drop just a little weight, I’m still maintaining fairly well.
  • Meal plan on the weekends! I was just getting back into it (back into a lot of things) when life took a turn again. Pretty sure I’ll get back at it with the help of my new planner and more time at home.

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

coachescorner

What can change in a decade?

bcupofchange

People have been talking so much about 2019 being the close of the decade (or 2020 being the start of a new one). Seems they can’t even agree on when a new decade starts.

So What can Change in a Decade?

A whole lot, it turns out!

RIP, boys

Saying Goodbye
There were many losses in the last 10 years: Mr. Judy’s father, my sister’s MIL, 3 furkids (Simba, Chester, Gizmo) –more, of course, but those hit closest to home.

Chester was my velcro dog, always wanting to be held by me or on my lap

My father had brain surgery, my mother had surgery, and we emptied out my childhood home (and I am still going through their stuff, or my mom is giving me stuff to throw out or donate) . . . then we moved my parents to a senior living community.

Hard to believe this photo is from 2017. So much has changed.

Now we’ve moved my Dad into a nursing home. It wasn’t what anyone wanted, but it was just the only option as my Mom could no longer cope with his worsening dementia even with a live in aide.

We welcomed a new furkid, too

In the midst of all those losses, we welcomed a new furkid, Bandit, a senior rescue. It got off to an extremely rocky start, and stayed that way for many months, but with time, love, training, and Nutricalm, Bandit found his forever home in our home — his third. Lola had also had multiple homes when we adopted her, but she was still a puppy. She needed a lot of training too, but at least she got along with humans and our other furkids.

The Big Move
We thought we’d retire in TX, we really did. Retiring in TX would also have meant Mr. Judy retiring from working. So we sold our home of 15 years, we packed up all our belongings (in one moving truck! — which included both our cars in addition to our furniture and stuff), and we made two plane trips to bring the boys (the cats) and the dogs to our new home in New York.

I became a Runner
I still kind of don’t know how it happened, but happen it did. Apparently I had started to experiment a bit with running when we lived in TX, but it wasn’t until I moved to NY that I became a Runner.

But I was never going to be a Racer. Oh no, not me. Not this turtle.

Not sure what this night would bring to me

I became a Racer
Then I ran my first 5k. It didn’t change my life. I ran another 5k, though. I decided a half marathon for my 50th birthday sounded like a good goal; I ran longer and longer races. Then I ran my first half marathon . . . and I was hooked. The dream of running a half marathon in every state was born. I am still far, far away from that goal, but it’s still a goal that motivates me. 

Happy I was already signed up for another in six weeks

I’ve also gone on to race more 5ks, 4 milers, 5 milers, 10ks, 15ks, and an 18 mile race.

Mud & Chocolate Half. Yup, I earned my chocolate with plenty of mud!

I became an occasional Trail Runner/Racer
2017. It feels so long ago. The year of 4 half PRs, including my first trail race (yes, chocolate was involved — as was my shoe coming apart in the last mile or so), my slowest half ever but hey, an automatic PR. Yup, my first trail race was a half marathon — go big or go home, right? 

Running trails with friends on a beautiful night

Since then I’ve done a couple of trail 5ks and one trail 10k. My running buddies were not interested in trails when I was training for my half, but last summer they finally decided trail running was cool, so I had some company on the trails for a change.

I haven’t ruled out a future trail half, but so far I mostly stick to road races.

Local friends do Wineglass

Racing with the Girls
Somehow most of those half marathons (but not all) have involved running friends, bloggers and non bloggers, local and not local. Even when it wasn’t a girls’ trip, somehow almost all our vacations became racecations.

HoHoRuns invited us to her home away from home in FL

Bloggers do UT

UT had me falling in love with hiking again

I remembered how much I love hiking
The racecation to UT reminded me that I really love to hike. Moderate day hikes (like not even all day). I’m always looking for hiking wherever we vacation now — and closer to home, too.

I lost the weight
It was the reason I started to run in the first place, to try to get those last 10 pounds off. At first it didn’t help. Eventually, though, after years of plateauing about 10 pounds above my very reasonable goal weight, I lost those 10 lbs. I’ve kept them off, too. At the moment I maintain my weight without even tracking my food, which is something I never thought would happen.

I used good old Weight Watchers. Going to meetings every week. I’ve been a Lifetime member roughly 30 years Although not attending meetings all that time, definitely often not at my goal weight all that time.

I’ve been maintaining that goal weight for about 6 years now. This last time I realized it wasn’t just about what I eat, but what was eating me. I think that’s the difference from all the other times I gained and lost 40 pounds (and yes, there were multiple times in my life that happened).

I became a Yoga Teacher
Like so many things in my life, I couldn’t tell you exactly when I started practicing Yoga, but I can tell you I’ve been practicing it a long time. I wanted to take my Yoga Teacher Training for a long time, at first I thought for my own knowledge; YTT is expensive!

Finally I decided to invest in me. I committed to YTT, and I knew that I wanted to teach. We did a specialty Yin Yoga module, and I knew that was what I wanted to teach. I also always knew that I wanted to make my practices meaningful, with mantras, inspiring quotes, meditations.

I started a Youtube Channel
Just squeaked in with that one! I believe that Yoga is so beneficial to everybody, and Youtube is a great way to make it accessible to everybody. I wasn’t going to start it this year, but I had things I wanted to share, so I sucked it up and I got it done.

I started this blog
It’s not my first blog. In fact, I’ve been a WordPress user for a very long time. My first blog was in about 2000, although I’m pretty sure that that one at least started with me just coding in HTML. I’ve had previous blogs about my cats, about graphic design, and a really short lived one about cookbooks.

This blog is the first personal blog I’ve had that really found its audience. My previous professional blog about graphic design did quite well, and I managed a large, thriving community of designers and those interested in design.

A decade can definitely change you!
Thank you for walking (or running) down memory lane with me — if you got to the end, you deserve a prize and I thank you for reading!

I can honestly say that I am a different person than I was ten years ago. Some people like to do the same things, year in and year out. Go to the same places for vacations. Live in the same city you were born in. There’s comfort in that, but despite the fact that change can be stressful, I like to change things up.

Jobs, where I live, hobbies, activities, where I travel to — even where I run! I haven’t really worked at one job more than about 10 years, although my stint at About.com (RIP) was a bit more than 10 years, but not by much

Change is the only thing certain in life. Well, death and taxes, I suppose, but aren’t they just changes after all?

What do you thinkwill change for you in the 20s?

What do you wantto change for you in the 20s?

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

coachescorner

Love Hurts: December 2019

blovehurts

I got to racing so much in November that apparently I was too busy writing up race recaps and never recapped November! It’s my favorite time of year to race, which is why I have so many long sleeve tech shirts (which I like to sleep in).

Running has been going well on just three days a week. No goal races in the near future, just keepin’ on keepin’ on. Running didn’t hurt me, but life? It’s been tough. Love can definitely hurt sometimes.

Love hurts, love scars
Love wounds and mars

Don’t get me wrong: I’m believe that it’s better to have loved & lost than to never love at all. Endings, though; endings can hurt. If we didn’t open our hearts, it wouldn’t hurt — but then we’d close our hearts to so much love. The hurt lets us know that we’ve love and been loved. In the case of love, no pain, no gain.

gwy runner digestion final
Loosen up those tight runner muscles!

By the way, there’s a new video on my Youtube Channel. Once the hustle and bustle of your holiday is over — especially if maybe you’ve eaten a bit more than you planned to! — check out my Yin Yoga Runner Stretch & Digestion video here. This one is a longer one, so make sure you can carve out a little me time for yourself.

I’ll be making more me time a goal for January! Will I be able to meet that goal? Stay tuned!

Around ice or on the mill, I got it done

Getting in scheduled runs
Still no schedule, no racing, no big races on the horizon . . . but still running. And I definitely deserve an A for some of the cold temps I’ve been running in lately!

Grade Earned:  A

Recording my runs
I was doing well, but all the video editing I’ve been doing eats up way too much of my time. I know it’ll get easier as I learn the software, but still, things have gotten a little spotty again.

Grade Earned: B-

Dynamic Warmup
Still skimping on the warmups — but yes, I’m at least doing a few things before I start to tun. Even on the days when it feels like single digits.

Grade Earned: B+

Foam Rolling
I have been doing well with foam rolling before my runs. Not at any other time, but you do what you can. I moved the stick upstairs with the thought of occasionally using it . . . it remains untouched so far.

Grade Earned: B

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Trying alternative pastas

Nutrition
Nutrition has been a struggle as it always is in the shorter days, but for the most part, so far, I seem to be winning that struggle. A little indulgence here and there, which of course is fine — trying to make sure I don’t use the holidays as an excuse to indulge all the time — that’s the trick: pick your indulgences, enjoy them, but don’t make it an every day occurrence.

Grade Earned: A

Support

  • Massage? Not this month.
  • Chiropractor Appointment? Still need to schedule it. Been too busy with other appointments.
  • Do I need a hair appointment? Made it after reading this, LOL — I had been thinking about it, so this got me to do it!

Grade Earned: B

Lots of yoga

Cross Training
There’s been a lot of yoga, for obvious reasons. I’ve been able to do a bit more strength training, but with more travel to my parents on the horizon, that will probably drop back down. I’ve started to incorporate Soul Strolls on the treadmill since often the roads are too iffy or the days are just too short.

Grade Earned: A-

November/December 2019  gets  . . . 
. . . an B. I know, lots of As, lots of good stuff, but the goals . . . I met 4 out of 7 goals. Not so great. Life has been busy. I may not have been staying with my mom as much, but I was still going to see my parents. Obviously that’s going to ramp up again and I will be away a lot again.

November Goals: (yes, never made goals for December)

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. Y. Slowly began to do a bit more, but it will be a struggle with more travel for the forseeable future.
  • See if I can at least sometimes get back to a 4 x week running schedule. N. Nope, too much going on in my life right now. I’m happy with where my running’s at, though..
  • Approach another studio about getting on their substitute list. N. I kind of put my eggs in one basket with the first studio. I recently discover my eye doctor is a sub there. You can’t make this stuff up!
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Y. Before runs.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Y. Still not tracking, still mostly maintaining (which means I bounce around a few pounds, but it’s not an upward creep). Being home more did help. Hopefully I’ll find the right balance going into 2020.
  • Meal plan on the weekends! N. Still struggling with it. I still need to keep reminding myself that this is a goal. 
  • A race? At some point?. Y. Three of them, in fact: two in November and one in December.

Which leads me to January Goals:

  • Strength train 2 – 3x week. There will be a lot of back and forth, with no ending date. I’ll do what I can, when I can — as always..
  • Maintain running 3 x week. I’m doing well on that schedule and with nothing big on the horizon see no need to ramp it up.
  • Study chair/slow yoga. Another to-do on my long list of to-dos to get off the ground teaching is to target some of the senior centers around me. I need to get comfortable with chair yoga. Not saying you can’t do regular yoga if you’re a “senior”, of course!
  • Foam roll when I’m able. Keep foam rolling before runs. Try to grab the stick occasionally.
  • Continue to try to eat intuitively — unless the weight starts to creep up. Winter is always my tough season when it comes to eating. I stopped tracking 8 months ago, and have continued to maintain my weight — a huge win for me!
  • Meal plan on the weekends! I’ll keep putting this in until I get back to it. Which I haven’t managed yet. 
  • Carve out more me time. Between YTT, my parents, teaching yoga (which requires a lot of prep work for me — someday it’ll be more muscle memory, but that day is in the future), the dogs, trying to learn video editing! — let’s just say I’ve got away from some of the self care routines I know are important to keep me healthy.

btuesdaytopics

Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

coachescorner