Sunday, June 28, 2015

Like A Smoothie

6/22: JM yoga meltdown, level 1.
6/23: 4 miles, TM. AM workout. 37 min
6/24: 6 miles, TM. AM workout. 56+ min.
6/25: Rest - Came home and napped for almost 2 hrs this day!
6/26: Rest
6/27: 6 miles treadmill, 55+ min. 10 min strength
6/28: 20 minutes, strength circuit. MC Fit*

Run days: 3
Rest days: 2
Strength days: 2.5
Miles run: 14 16! Math fail! #notatrueasian

I've had to take a boot camp break this week because D hurt her foot over the weekend. I definitely had to muster some motivation to work out on Monday after work. It's amazing how much more enjoyable it is with a friend! Hoping her foot heals quickly, mostly because I am selfish and need a workout buddy! Plus it's the best time to catch up on life!

It is getting easier to wake up to run during summer mornings. I'm still running on the treadmill even though it's light out by 5am, mostly for safety reasons. I live in a fairly populated suburbs but I still don't feel comfortable going solo that early. Most normal people aren't out on a 5am fun on a random weekday, know what I'm sayin?

Basically the only people out are insane: The runners, and the other crazies.

I think this is the first week in a while that I've run two mornings in a row. I think. Or maybe I have but they haven't been as many miles because my legs are feeling it right now. Monday's yoga was also a killer workout for my legs so it is probably a combination. 

I'm feeling pretty good these days with my combo of exercise and diet. I realize for the amount of exercise I try to incorporate into my life, I don't really look like I exercise you know? 


Honestly the only way to control that for me is by diet, and probably some consistent weight training. But yes, mostly it's my diet. I'm trying to eat way less sugar than normal but that means much less cake and froyo. 

I said less, not none. I can't resist a little sugar. No sugar, that's no way to live. 

I had grand plans to work out in the evenings on Thursday but I've been crazy fatigued this week and ended up making the mistake of lying down on the bed and promptly passing out for almost 2 hrs. I woke up at 7pm,  and the kids were zoned out in front of the tv and J was finishing up some editing on the computer. We ended up eating dinner out pretty late, and finished up the night with some McDonald's ice cream cones. #thesugarproblemisreal

Friday was my rest day and we had the Ragnar team meeting at our house. Our meeting was productive, we all went over our respective legs and chatted strategy over race day logistics. I think we're all getting pretty excited. I can't believe I'm running a relay! Again! What is wrong with me... Hoping the weather is not scorching like it has been of late. Please please please.


Yesterday we attended a wedding in a non air conditioned barn. It was quaint and very sweet, but also a raging inferno. I think my thighs were fused together with my sweat. #nothighgaphere
It was nice to have an excuse to dress up, socialize with friends we haven't seen in a while and of course, eat wedding food and wedding cake. Never say no to wedding cake.

We woke up late for church but I had about 20 minutes to squeeze in a quick workout so I tried a workout from a gal I follow on instagram* -

She has great tips on workouts using weights, body weights, with lots of plyo. I struggled through two rounds of this workout and felt pretty spent at the end. I was dripping with sweat like I had run 3 miles in the blazing sun. My goal is to get to the recommended 4 rounds. Maybe I'll attempt it this week!

It's supposed to be another blazing hot week this week. Praying you have some a/c, or some very nice friends who do. Have a great week!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A Good Week

6/15: Boot camp w D. 5am
6/16: 4 miles, TM, AM workout. 37 min
6/17: Boot camp day 2. 5am
6/18: 6 miles, TM. Evening. 54+ min
6/19: Rest
6/20: 8 miles, TM. 1:13
6/21: Active rest. Walking all day at the *U.S. Open!


Run day: 3
Miles: 18*
Stength: 2
Rest: 2

After all of this time, I'm still trying to figure out what formula of cardio/strength/rest is working for me. Getting closer, I think. While all of my runs this week were on the treadmill, they felt really good. My two strength days were boot camp days w D, which of course were fun, fast, and effective. 

Sometimes I forget just how important it is to exercise our mental strength because I fought with myself to get those 8 miles in on the treadmill.

Like I have confessed before, constant movement on the treadmill is a problem of me. Water breaks are an excuse for me to step on the sides, and let me tell you, I drink a lot of water, if you know what I mean. Last week I decided enough was enough, and that I wasnt going to get any mentally or physically stronger by giving in whenever I felt tired, so last week's 6 miles was the first run in a while that I ran straight throughout  it sounds like a small feat that people do all the time right? Easier said than done, as with most things having to do with running. 

This past Saturday's run was especially challenging because it's the longest I've run on the treadmill since last November.

Yes, it's June. 

My run involved a lot of self talk and TV. Also peppered in towards the end of the run were demands for food from the kids, All of whom I had fed stacks of pancakes. Bottomless savages, those ones. 

I got through the 8 miles in about 1 hour 13 minutes, which is about a 9:13 avg pace.. I think? 

This is totally an estimate since my IFit is not currently connected. I I was sweating like a fat man at a weight watchers weigh in after this run! It was not the fasted run I've clocked on the treadmill but I felt so damn good to get through those 8 miles. Throughout the last half of the run, I really had to talk myself into staying on and getting to 8. I almost stopped at 4,5.6... and at 7....but knew deep down that I would obsess all day over not getting to 8, and disappointed in myself for not pushing through. I ended up watching the newest episodes of Extreme Makeover Weight Loss, which strangely always makes the time go by faster. I guess there is something to be said for suffering together. 

Oh, did I mention I talked my friend D info leading a boot camp for us, 2-3 mornings a week. Last week was our first two sessions, and it was so much fun. It's pretty early, especially for her, but 5am is really the very latest I can meet on workdays, so I'm extra thankful that she is willing to roll herself out of bed. She's lead some group exercise classes in the past so I knew she'd know what she was doing. She makes us do high reps of about 4-5 exercises, with 5 burpees with push-ups in between sets, and we usually have time for about two sets before I have to run home and jump in the shower. It's a short but intense season; and I'm love/hating the burpees. Burnnnn so goooood.

*J's Samsung watch clocked us at over 20,000 steps on Sunday, roughly 9.3 miles of walking!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Ok now

I spent some time thinking before posting last night what I wrote. I wanted to be sensitive but real, because those are my thoughts on the matter.

Ironically, this morning as I was getting ready for work and perusing blogs and news as usual, I actually did come across a few helpful blog posts and articles about life and training written by working parents. So, I'm not alone! It's out there, maybe I just need to look a little more introspectively. 

I mean, of course I'm not alone. I need to stop hosting pity parties for 1 and get over myself over, LB. 

I know a lot of my frustration is self inflicted and some sort of projection over the limits of my situation, but honestly, it's not as dire as I sometimes make it to be. Life is actually pretty good. I just need some continuing education in Perspective 101.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Off (but really, on) Topic

Warning. I have to rant/complain a tiny, tiiiiny bit ok? 
I really hope I don't offend anyone. Not my intention. Everyone's struggles are very personal, and we all do what we can. 

Lately I've been seeing lots of articles and blogs on how to balance training with life, which is always something I think most of us are trying to figure out. I know I am! I have 3 kids, a busy husband, work full time with a long commute and have a big house that is sadly not self cleaning. And holy laundry, batman! And before you ask, yes my husband and I are equal in household duties so it's not like he leaves everyone for me to do. He does most of the housework, and I still feel overwhelmed. So much dust and dirty clothes ugh. So yes, I appreciate any advice or even simply empathizing of the situation. It's tough, but it's life and we just have to do the best we can given what we've got, you know? I want to see how other real life people handle/juggle their lives - family, work, training - all of it.

But the thing about it is, the articles and blog posts I end up reading are unrelatable to me. A good handful of the blog posts about balancing life and training are written by SAHMs or bloggers, neither of whom (I assume, so call me out of I'm wrong) have a 6am train to catch or an hour long commute. I've seen the hashtag #5amworkoutclub, and I laugh. 5am is my work wake up call, so if I want to fit in a good treadmill run (too dark to run outside) I am more part of the #4amwakeupcall, which frankly is ungodly. 

Look, I'm not saying blogging is not a real job. All jobs are real. 

Except being a circus clown. That shouldn't be real because it's creepy! 


Well. there is really no easy transition here so, anyways!

I've been a SAHM to 3 kids ages 4 and under! That shit is straight hard. Being a stay at home parent is Real, yo. I've worked part time. I've worked full time. I feel like I've done it all, except own my own business, which will not be happening anytime soon).  I mean, blogging sounds like hard work, keeping up with the demands of the ever evolving faces of social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, I am forgetting like ten more...?!) but when bloggers who work from home and travel mostly on the dime of sponsors, try and tell me how best to balance my life, I just.. can't. I stop reading. Because that advice is great for that particular situation. But what about those of us with actual bosses who want to see is working diligently in front of our computers, for the large corporation who is paying my health insurance. Those who can't jump on a treadmill or push play when the kids are taking a nap or at school. But when I see people making excuses of being too tired or worn out from the kids to fit in a workout or make a meal, my eyeballs hurt from the eye rolling. Because at least they have the choice. Ok, to be fair, there are days when your kids run you ragged and you really do not have the energy to do one more thing. I have been there as well. But now looking back at those days, I wish I would have just kicked my own ass out of that funk and just gotten it done already, a short run or workout, anything to get going! I could have done that back then, but I didn't. I should have, but I didn't know what I know now. Now that my day consists of work and commuting,  I have little time from when I get home to when it's bedtime. The minute I step in the door, I feel like that clock is ticking. So much to be done! Aaaand go!

My current life circumstances don't give me the flexibility to make my own schedule, so it's either waking up before the birds have stopped dreaming to get my sweat on, or come home in a mad rush and ignore everyone for at least 30 minutes to sweat, which in itself is stressful. Family dinner is important for us, so I do feel guilt (self inflicted) when everyone is waiting for me. And in case you're wondering, yes! Part of me is jealous that people can work out and run errands , be there for their kids and do things during the day other than be a corporate robot! I want to do that too! I want to run ten miles on a Tuesday and then write a sponsored post by a clothing company who has sent me products to review!  I have to buy all of my running shoes! No one sends me free shoes! Btw, I am not against free shit. I'm Asian. I love free!

Yes, I know you have demanding children who want lunch NOW, who need our attention, errands to run, appointments to makes, schedules to manage. Like I said, I get it. That was me! But it is different when you're home vs in an office building at the mercy of a hopefully understanding, but not always empathetic, manager. 
Yes, I get it. Being home with little ones is hard work. Like I said, I've done it! It was so damn hard and I swear it aged me exponentially. I'm not saying it's not, or it's not a legitimate job or that people who do it shouldn't offer advice. As parents, we should all work together to lift each other up, right? Especially us women! Let's all be supportive of one another's efforts, even if it's different than our own. I don't want anyone to think I am bashing bloggers or Stay at home parents. I'm not, I swear! I have been there, and my husband is kind of there, as he works from home but is 100% in charge of the kids when they're home.

I guess what I'm saying is, I really wish someone would give me some useful advice about my particular type of situation. I know people who do train hard, work full time outside of the house and blog, but no one really talks about how they balance all of it. Those people, what do their days look like? I want to know!

At this point in the game, I really don't expect to have it all figured out but I'm wading my way through and finding what works best for my family. Sometimes it would nice to have some company though, you know?

I'm not ripping the Stay at Home parent or blogger. Let's get that straight. I am just wishing some of these articles/posts were written by people in my similar situation.

Even a loner, antisocial person like me needs a fren every once in a while. 

Monday, June 15, 2015

New week (uh, last week)

6/8: Rest
6/9: Rest
6/10: Rest
6/11: JM, Ripped in 30 level 4
6/12: Popsugar Pilates and arms, 30 min total. So many squats!
6/13: 6 miles, TM. 55+ min.
6/14: 4 miles outside, 36+ min. Popsugar  arms, 5 min.

Week started off slow but I feel good about ending with some solid workouts.
I forgot to finish my relay post last week so I'm doubling up. 

Lucky you.
After the relay, the side of my left ankle felt really sore and tender so I decided to rest a couple of extra days.

That's not true, I was just really damn tired from the weekend.

Although, the part about my sore ankle was true. 

By Thursday I was feeling antsy for a good sweat, so I came home from work and immediately squeezed in a 30 minute session before dinner. 

JM Ripped level 4 felt not hard for about... 6 minutes. The next 24 minutes were spent heaving myself off the floor and wiping the sweat out of my eyeballs. 
All in all, a good workout.

In Friday I was feeling pretty flattened by the week so I was going to take it easy but then decided a short workout might make me feel better.

Pilates workouts are no joke. So much core work! Also, I have no core! I guess this means I should really be doing more of this right?

Saturday we all slept in and it was glorious! I can't remember the last time we have had zero weekend plans, and we took full advantage of the day. Since we woke up so late (10am *cough cough*) and it was already pretty warm, I opted for the treadmill. It was my first run in a week since the relay. 

Confession: I have a horribly bad habit of putting my feet on the side railings one too many times during my treadmill runs, and I think this has affected my mental game when running outside, so I was determined to have a continuous run of at least 4 miles. I wore my trust old pure flow 2's and just kept my legs moving and watched a brand new episode of Extreme Makeover Weight Loss. The miles seems to fly by and my legs felt strong. I ended with 6 miles in just under 56 minutes, which is a solid pace for me, especially of late. 

Sunday's 4 miles at 8am was supposed to be 6 but I was just tired and my legs felt heavy. I managed to get in 4 before calling it a day but it was still time on my feet outside in the morning sunshine so I'll take it! 

Monday, June 8, 2015

Rainier to Ruston relay weekend!

6/1: 3 miles, TM
6/2: Rest
6/3: 5 miles, TM (AM)
6/4: TIU HIIT and weights
6/6: Rainier to Ruston relay, 15 miles total
6/7: Rest

Miles: 23
Run days: 3
XT: 1 
Rest Days: 3

The weekend happened in a blur. I'm still sore from Saturday and my ankle is feeling a little tender but overall I'm feel okay about the weekend.

This recap probably won't be super exciting but here goes:

Leg 1: 8am, lovely 50 degrees
4.9 miles, slow pace, sub 10 min mile. Ran w Amber from Beast Runners team #2. 

Started at the base of Mt Rainier, and it was beautiful and clear at the start. Most of the miles were shaded, with rolling hills throughout. Amber and I chatted the entire way, and the running felt effortless because we were just letting ourselves take it easy. I never thought I'd enjoy running with friends so much! I was unfazed when we were done. Didn't even feel like we had run! However, the next two legs would make up for this. 

Dun dundun...

Leg 5: 4.6 miles, flat trail, some shade mostly blazing heat with no breeze. 75 degrees!

I was feeling pretty solid for the first 4 miles, with negative splits from 9:13 to 9:08. I wasn't going to push myself since it was so damn hot, but... then the wheels started to come loose. I hit 4 miles and was just... Tired. How sad is that. I used to run 4 miles at a much faster pace and barely break a sweat.

No, actually not true. I now break a sweat just cutting some vegetables. 

I tried to mentally push myself to keep going but then realized, there is no reason to kill myself over this. 

It. Was. Hot! I ended up taking a few walk breaks just to get my heart rate regulated, drank more water, and then sprinted the last .25 mile, mostly because this part of the trail was exposed and the people waiting for the next leg could see me. #poseralert

Leg 9: 3.7 miles
Last and shortest leg of the day! By this time of day it was 85 degrees and blazing. The run consisted of mostly flat trail, although the first mile was down a dirt road flanked by nothing but flat, dry fields. At this point my legs felt pretty heavy and despite guzzling water and running with a water bottle, I was starting to feel slightly dehydrated. Mile 1 was a slog fest and mile 2 was no better; but I figure I only had 1.7 miles left, and most of it was flat. 

Around the 2 mile mark, I found myself behind a group of girls running together, plus 2 individual runners scattered around us. I was diligently using the 3 girls to pace myself; when suddently we reached an intersection and we all just stopped. We didn't see any direction markers or any other runners around is, and so we all just decided to run over the bridge. Once we were on the other side of the river, we all realized that we were good and lost. The lone male runner stuck around for all of 3 minutes, and then in typical male fashion, continued on his way. The Wrong way, mind youL

I hope he found his way back.... 

We eventually used the phone of one of the gals to trace ourselves to the finishing location. Turns out we were on the WRONG side of the river. 

By this point I figured my team knew I was very lost, as they would have been waiting an extra 20-30 minutes. Either that or they figured I was reaaallly slow. Eventually we ran to a bridge that took us to the correct side of the river, and then I just slogged the last .7 miles to the finish.  My team was incredibly understanding and just happy for me to show up at the finish. I ended up running almost two extra miles from the detour, and was just happy to be back and to be done! 

Running 3 legs is blazing heat is definitely challenging but it was a much needed eye opener and practice run for Ragnar. We've got a month left and I've got some work to do!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Happy National Running Day

I woke up at 4:45am* to get in some treadmill miles and didn't realize until afterwards that today is National Running Day.

5 miles for NRD!

Lookit me, already starting off the day in the best way. 

Happy running, my friends!

*Apparently it is much more motivating for me run when I have actually events/races coming up. 

Also, on a related note, signing up for two relay races with fast people will scare the bejeezus outta you and make you sleep in your running clothes to ensure you will wake up and run already.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Good ending. Hopefully even better beginning.

Out with May. In with June.

May 18: 4 miles, TM. Hills and and speed intervals
May 19: Rest
May 20: JM, Ripped in 30 level 1. AM workout!
May 21: Rest
May 22: 4 miles; TM. Hills and speed intervals
May 23: Rest. camping. 
May 24: Rest

May 25: 5 miles, outside w D. Slow and steady. Walked up the hills because of D's injuries
May 26: JM 30 Day Shred, level 2 (AM workout)
May 27: 3 miles, TM. Intervals. (AM workout!)
May 28: Tone it Up HIIT workout (AM)
May 29:Rest
May 30: 6 miles, outside with D.
May 31: JM Ripped in 30, Level 2.

Lookit all the morning workouts, everyone!

Two weeks of workouts. Most days it's no more than about 30 minutes. I should probably give myself some more time to get in some longer workouts but since they're on the shorter end, I try my best to maximize my time. I work a little harder during the JM Michael's workouts, or incorporate speed and hills during my short treadmill runs. I'm usually pretty satisfyingly sweaty after these workouts and the endorphins carry me though a good portion of the day. 

As you can see from this week's workouts, I'm killing it in the morning workout sessions. It has been.... ages since I've last worked out in the mornings before work, but it's definitely worth the bleary eyed wake up calls at 4:00, 4:30 5:00. 

My running has been slow and I know this past year has done a number on my endurance, but I'm slowly and steadily doing my best to work my fitness level back up to par. 

I swear I say this every post. 

Going to spend the week preparing for the Rainier to Ruston Team Relay race. This year we are all running 3 legs each in preparation for Ragnar in July. I'm not sure why I keep signing up for these races, especially in the summer when running takes a backseat, but... I keep doing it. Must mean I like it at least a little bit... right?