Thursday, June 15, 2017

Summer Time Blues

Summer time got me like whoa...FREAKING WHOA!
Don't get me wrong, I love my boys. I am grateful every day that I have a husband that is able to provide for us while I stay at home with them...at least while they are little.

This last school year while my oldest was in VPK for only 3 hours a day, it made a huge difference in just being able to get stuff done with only one kid in tow. Things like grocery shopping, cleaning house, laundry or getting all my running/workouts in. Now add on the summer vacation time when he has ants in his pants until Kindergarten starts up in the August, his high level of energy (like every other 5 year old I pressume) and little brother still being not quite big enough for a lot of activities...I'm driving the struggle bus most days. Just waiting for the coffee to kick in and wondering when is too early in the afternoon for a glass of wine. I don't have my shit together, not even close. I'm not a Pinterest DIY activity mom or an organize a play date mom...I have friends with kids sure but everyone has different schedules over the summer and trying to find time to meet up is like a chore in itself. I don't know why this summer seems harder than the last.

Our summer days consist of me squeezing in runs/workouts when I can, praying for a chance of little to no rain so that we can spend time outside at least once a day, finding cheap (free is even better) indoor activities because let's face it Florida is HOT in the summer, limiting screen time (tv and tablet) and let's not forget to still find time to practice and keep all those VPK skills fresh for when school starts in August. We have VBS weeks planned out, library time on the calendar, the park whenever, hell we even have our own trampoline but after 5 minutes they want off. I know it won't always be like this and there will be a day when I wish we had time to be lazy and have an easy chill summer. But today is not that day, I feel like I can't relax and enjoy this summer time with them.

And kindergarten, yeah there's that. Every time I think about it I get a knot in my stomach. The supply lists are extensive, the school dress code (uniform) policy means a whole new wardrobe and the kindergarten readiness test, wait WHAT?! At least that will be over with by next week. So then I guess I can focus on school shopping and it's still only June.

Plus if I'm being selfish (just for a minute), I want to be able to do things that I also find fun. My photography gets put on the back burner, I can't go have a lazy pool day with friends and fruity cocktails because I'm always in mom mode, I don't get to blog as much as I'd like, I don't get as many solo runs or even stroller runs.

I welcome any comments, tips or suggestions...
My mama rant is over...time to put on my big girl panties and just deal with it.
Done. But first, more coffee.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Marathon Must Haves

Oh yeah...it is that time again! Marathon training has already began again. This time I'm gearing up for Marine Corp Marathon in October. I kicked it off with a solid 8 mile run on Memorial Day, it only seemed fitting. With more tools under my belt I'm hoping to be better, faster and stronger in 20 weeks. Holy crap...20 weeks sounds like an eternity from now. I've used the last 2 months cutting back on mileage and working on cross training with yoga, HIIT workouts and most recently weights. My foam roller and I are ready. My plan is mapped out. But first I wanted to talk about my top 5 things that are must haves during this training cycle, really for any of my training.

1. Enertor Performance Insoles
Yes you've probably read this before on my blog or seen it on my Instagram but I cannot get over these things. I ordered a pair back in January then I was invited to become part of their ambassador program. They have totally blown me away with how much they help and how different they feel from the other brand insoles I used to wear. These have more support through my high arch, the heel cup is more pronounced plus you feel the shock absorption from the amazing D30 material. And hell, If Usain Bold wears them and endorses them, then they must be good!
**NOTE: If you want to try them, head to their website and use the coupon code KACEY10 for $10 off a pair! {www.enertor.com} You won't regret it but if you do, they have a return policy.

2. Honey Stinger Waffles
Not only are the delicious but they travel great on runs too. I found their product after my sensitive tummy kept flaring up on runs from trying different gels and chews. Nothing worked like I needed it too. I get what I call "hangry" on runs, I just get hungry and need a little snack to boost me back up. Something light but that can provide a nutritional benefit as well. Honey is a great alternative for a natural source of energy. I love this product so much I wanted to be part of their ambassador program and you know what, I am. I was selected to be part of the Honey Stinger Hive which I was super stoked about. I use their gummies and have tried their gels too; those products still work with me and not against me. I just prefer the waffles as my go-to. I seriously don't do a long run without them!

3. Tailwind Nurtrition
Now I know what they say, all you need all day, really. But see note above, yes I have to eat on my long runs. Aside from that, Tailwind does the trick. I can mix it up in my Camelbak pack or a bottle depending on how long I'll be running. This goes back to my sensitive tummy issues and how other sports drinks were doing a number on me and just water wasn't enough. I have tried several flavors but my favorite are the Naked and Berry - both uncaffeinated - but the Tropical Buzz - caffeinated - is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. The flavors are light enough that you don't even taste it when you burp after. LOL...you know how that is after you drink a strong flavored sports drink loaded with sugar?!?! A little fun fact, when you order from them online, they write a personal note with every order, sometimes they even decorate your package for a fun surprise when it arrives. My most recent order had this on the 2 bags "Kacey - BASPMR" which stands for bad ass stroller pushing mother runner! Fun right?!

4. Headsweats Hat
I seriously own too many hats for a girl as it is but I love them. never run without one. The trucker hats are my new favorite style. But these ain't your daddy's trucker hat...they are sweat wicking performance trucker hats. Super cute and fun styles too. I have 2 - a custom one I had embroidered before my first marathon and a beautiful one that was an MRTT exclusive design. I own other versions of their hats too and even a visor but they are all the freaking bomb. If you are a hat aficionado like me, they are worth checking out. You can usually catch great deals too!

5. Garmin Forerunner 220
I cannot run naked as some do, I don't think I ever have. EVER. I'm obsessed with my watch. I am such a nerd when it comes to analyzing my pace, hitting my goal splits, and looking at all the data on Garmin Connect. It is not the most recent one or the latest version but it works for me and I love it. Plus it's pretty and purple!

What are some things that you cannot live or at least something that you never run without? What are your favorite go-to items that you love? What gets you through the run or through training?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Serious Slacker - kinda but not really

Oh hi there...I remember you. My blog. My sad little neglected blog. I've still been busy. I just barely have time to pee let alone blog. Between end of the year shenanigans with my son's VPK class, Easter holiday and whatever other excuse I can come up with, I'll use it...Sorry I've been a serious slacker on my blog.

So what have I been doing?
Running. HIIT workouts. Yoga, lots of yoga and headstand practice. Shopping (shhh...don't tell my hubby) but it was all on sale. Working on my marathon training plan. Drinking wine. Weaning little man from breastfeeding. See, I've been busy. With training gearing up for Marine Corp Marathon starting the first part of June I figured it was time to update this. Seeing as how my last post was over a month ago.

My training plan is DONE...YAYYYYY ME!!! Isn't she pretty???
I've gotten used to doing cross training now a few times a week so I feel better prepared to incorporate that into my marathon training. HIIT workouts have become fun for me as has Yoga. Now that school is almost over, my worry for the summer weekday runs is how will I fit them in being home with 2 boys and only a single stroller. Not to mention it is too dang hot out for them. I see a lot of early morning treadmill miles before anyone else is awake or maybe even before hubby has to get up to leave for work through my dark neighborhood with all the wildlife. Nah...treadmill it is. I have been really trying to get little man done with breastfeeding for good but I'll settle for him being down to only once a day, which is at bedtime. I'm pretty stoked about a marathon training cycle where I don't have to wake up 30 minutes earlier to pump and or dream feed.

So shopping...or spending, well I have been modest. Only hitting sales, using my ambassador discounts and/or coupon codes. I've stocked up on my Honey Stinger Waffles but am out of Tailwind and need to buy more before those longer runs start. Those are my go-to for fuel and hydration. The only combo that I've found that agrees with my sensitive tummy. I have a few new pairs of my favorite running shorts EVER...Oiselle Rogas but have a coupon code that is causing me have the itch to buy more. A new Headsweats hat is on it's way...I ordered months ago but it has been on backorder. Enertor sent me a new racing singlet and another pair of insoles so I now have kick ass gear from them to help see me through. Before I know it, it'll be time for a new pair of shoes too. Likely 2 more before October rolls around. I'm also passing on races that I want to do because we will be having an expensive travel weekend to MCM. Lord I need to hit the lottery just to support my running habit.

It's like Christmas gearing up for the many miles I'm about to embark on. Then I most definitely won't be calling myself a slacker anymore.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Favorite Non-Running Workout

Let's talk cross training for a minute...
I incorporated cross training and yoga into my first marathon training plan but I wasn't religious about it. And quite frankly, I just couldn't get into a good mid set or find one I really enjoyed. So I slacked off in that area. My focus for the next 2 months is to get a good cross training routine in my back pocket so that I'm not fumbling around in June trying to find one or get accustomed to something else. So for 2 months it will be less miles at a comfortable pace with more focus on my cross training efforts. Plus it will give my legs some much needed rest. Why??? Because marathon training starts up full force again in June.

I keep seeing how active recovery is better than a true rest day. So instead of the amount of rest days I had before, there will be active recovery. I think I've settled on HIIT workouts and yoga on those active rest days. HIIT workouts are good for runners and can be done anywhere and anytime with little to no equipment. I've YouTubed a few and see some great ideas on how just 15-20 minutes of a HIIT workout can benefit my running. I will still do yoga since that is a great way to stretch as well. I also have a P90X Plyometrics DVD that I can utilize too but it is intense for 90 minutes, I may have to build up to that again. I can do more weight and core work too. Too bad swimming or cycling isn't an easy option for me because that swimming would especially be nice during the heat of the summer when the bulk of my training will be.

Am I missing any good options? Got a favorite YouTube channel?
Share what else I should look into in the comments below.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

MCM 2017 Bring It On

A few months back my hubby and I discussed the possibility of taking a trip to DC. Lucky him he travels there often for work but I'm always dying to go but somebody has to hold down the fort, am I right??? So...an idea popped in my head. MCM + anniversary weekend + trip to DC = win win! He agreed and told me to put in for the lottery. And I did.

This weekend when I found out that a lot of the runners from the 17.75k end up not using their access granted code I was on a mission. I wanted to run this race. I wanted to be in MCM 2017. Bad. It's a bucket list race for me and the lottery suspense was already driving me nuts. In case you didn't know, you can use that code to get a guaranteed spot for the MCM later that year. And people give them away so they don't go to waste. In the scenario for how I got the code, this gentleman was part of the MCM Runners Group and they automatically get to register so although he ran the 17.75k he didn't need his code. SCORE!!! So he was nice enough to share with me. I hope I see this man at the MCM because I would kiss his face --- ok well maybe not really but I am so grateful! So sure enough I am in. I am running the MCM in 2017...mark that off the bucket list.

Now time to start planning my mini vaca with my hubby for a long weekend to DC because the race falls on our anniversary weekend too. He knows all the nooks and crannies of DC now so I'm happy we're going together. Besides, the last time I went to DC was in 1990-something with my 5th grade safety patrol trip so I'm LOOOOONG overdue. And start scouring hotel and flight deals...oh and can I get a Xanax or Valium prescription now --- I hate flying. HATE IT! Maybe alcohol will have to do the trick to calm my nerves when that time comes.

My training will start in June and I'll likely follow the same plan that I used for my first marathon last fall, Space Coast. Yeah...training for another marathon in the dead heat of Florida summers. I want to put more focus on being consistent with my cross train days and preparing myself for that elevation. Hills! There will be some hilly training runs. Now that I know what 26.2 feels like, twice, I can modify that plan if needed. I am also going to focus more on my nutrition and meal prep/planning. I'm cutting back on my mileage in April since I'm in the off season and have no races planned until MCM. I want to get more comfortable with a few cross training workouts to have in my back pocket.

If you've done this race before, please comment. Share your best tips, advice, suggestions. I would love to hear from you. I absolutely cannot wait to #runwiththemarines!