Weekly Fitness Plan #1

I’m giving it a shot and joining Running with Racheal’s weekly Food and Fitness Plan Link-up.

I’m going to post my weekly fitness plan for now.  I’m not much of a planner when it comes to our dinners yet, so I’ll have to work up to that one.  Maybe with summer vacation coming, I’ll be inspired!  A girl can dream! 🙂

 

Weekly Fitness Plan

Daily: 30-day Ab Challenge and 30 day  Buns, Guns and Abs Challenge

Monday:  BodyPump and a mile run

Tuesday: 1-3 mile run (depends on if we have a meeting after work or not)

Wednesday: 2-3mile run and Pilates on the Ball

Thursday: 5 miler

Friday: 1 mile

Saturday: 10 miles

Sunday: 1-3 miles depending on how I feel post long run

 

What’s on your fitness agenda?

 

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Streakin’ and Sweatin’

I did it!  I completed my first month long running streak challenge and I’m still going!

When I signed up to participate in last month’s “Run Every Day” challenge, I had two goals in mind: make it past 12 days (March’s running streak) or make it the whole month.  Without a race this month, there was not a need to taper, so I was already positive that I could complete the challenge and end up running all 31 days.

In addition to running every day, I also made a point to do some kind of physical activity every day.  So on days when I ran only a mile, it was usually coupled it with a Body Pump or CX Worx class or core work at home.  I’m already on day 33 and counting…

I really think that all my core work has helped my running!  When I was doing the daily core work back at the beginning of the year, I ran back to back PRs on half marathons.  I’m hoping that if I can stick with it now, by Fall, I’ll be in good condition to go for another half marathon PR.  All this has taught me to run on tired muscles, but to keep pushing and moving.  My core doesn’t seem to deteriorate on long runs and my form and posture are so much better, stronger.  I’ve also noticed that it takes a lot less time to recover from racing and speed work.  I believe that these challenges are motivating me to become a better overall athlete so I’m sticking with them.

I’ve added four more challenges now that June has started.  Since I was already streaking on Memorial Day, I joined the Runner’s World Summer Challenge.  Run at least a mile every day from Memorial Day to July 4th.  At this point, what’s 30 more days of running?!  I have two races for June, but I’m not planning on racing any of them for a PR, so there’s not a need to entirely taper.  Running an easy mile a day leading up to each race will be just fine. And I’m starting summer break next Friday, so I’ll have even more time to grab in a run. To up my core work regimen, I joined two challenges on Facebook sponsored by 30 Day Challenge Series: June’s 100 Push-Ups and Ab challenges.  Today was my first day doing both of them.  It’s definitely tough!  I was better prepared for the ab workout and plank than I was for the 100 push-ups, but I completed both.  The great thing about each challenge is you can break up the push-ups into smaller sets.  I alternated a set of 20 push-ups with a set of 20 ab exercises.  It made it easier to do.  I even was able to complete one set of push-ups on my toes.  Hoping to try and add more “on my toe” push-ups with each 5 days of the challenge.

And just to put an exclamation point on doing challenges, the June “SWEAT EVERY DAY” Challenge by I ❤ to run was perfect!  Since I’m already running every day and now doing core work too, I might as well account for all that sweating and streaking.

Happy Streaking!

Cinco de Run-o! Cinco de Fun-o!

May is here and it should be warm, sunny and wonderful, but right now, we’re dealing with wind, cold and rain.  I’m hoping that by the end of the week those 80 degree temps on the 7 day forecast aren’t just some sick joke.  I am ready to feel the sun and to finally put away all my winter clothes for good.

Even though the weather has been dreary, the month started off with some fun virtual events and a great Girls’ Night.  May 1st kicked off another “Run Every Day” month from I ❤ to Run.  I participated in their March event making it 12 days before I had to taper for Wrightsville.  It was the longest streak I have ever done, so though it wasn’t the full 31 days, it was still an accomplishment!  So with no races in May, I’m hoping that I can make it until the end of the month.  They also added in an additional challenge of running before the sunrise twice a week.  I’ll have to luck into that challenge. During the week, mornings are hectic enough without adding in a run. So unless I get a wild hair, probably not gonna happen.

On Thursday, a group of us all met to run a few miles together and head out to one of our favorite Mexican restaurants for a little girls night, Cinco de Run-O, and patio time.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature didn’t get the invite and our patio time ended up being inside time, but it was fun nonetheless.  We grubbed on good food, enjoyed some big beverages and had many laughs.  Just the perfect night girls’ night out!

This week also was another 5 by the 5th.  I ran my 5 this morning during my 6 miler with my friend, Kathy.  It’s hard to believe that we only have just one more month left for the virtual race series.  It’s been a fun way to celebrate the start of each month and see some great progress on my five mile time.  Next month, I’ll run my 5 miles during the Indoor Insanity Marathon Relay.  Hopefully, setting a new 5 mile PR for the race series.

I wore my new Fellow Flowers We Run For Boston tech tee this morning on my run!  Love this shirt and it’s message, “You Cannot Destroy the Will of a Runner, We Run For Boston”!  All proceeds go to The One Fund, Inc.  It’s super soft and comfy.

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I Like Big Samples and I Cannot Lie!

The start of April brings singing birds, awesome weather, and the next round of monthly subscription boxes!  I always look forward to the beginning of each month, anxiously anticipating the awesomeness that will be included in each of my subscriptions.  As far as beauty boxes, I have been getting a Birchbox since July 2012 and have added Ipsy (formally Glam Bag) this month after being on a short waiting list.  I’m excited to see what will be included in each of those and maybe make a decision on which of the two to continue with next month.  Though, I’m pretty sure, I’ll end keeping both subscriptions!  I also bought Nick a month of Birchbox for Men just to try it out.  He isn’t too big into the whole guy skin and hair product rage, but since each box is tailored to your likes and lifestyle, maybe there will be some useful products in his box.

My most anticipated box this month is the StrideboxLast month’s box was chock full of practical goodies for runners.  I could not wait to try out the products.  The two bars, the Picky Bar and the Kind Bar, made their way to my gym bag.  I always eat a snack before each post work run so I knew that these two would be gobbled up in no time.  I already love Kind bars so I ate that one first (their newest flavor, dark chocolate nut and sea salt), saving the Lauren’s Mega Nut Picky Bar.  As much as I love getting the goodies in all my boxes last month, I hoard them. Seriously.  Much like my gift card collection, I like to hang on to the samples until I can absolutely savor them.  I do it with my Birchboxes already, using up the products that I currently use or interest me the least and saving the ones that I know will be awesome.  It’s a crazy weird quirk, but that’s me. 🙂

That being said, the Kind bar was really tasty.  I had intentions of taking a pic of each bar, but I ate this one before I took a picture.  Oops!  The bar was the perfect mix of chocolate and sea salt. Crunchy and a little gooey, exactly what you want as a snack before a run.  It sticks with ya, but not in a bad-upset-your-stomach-kind-of-way.

After hoarding for a few weeks, I finally gave into the Picky Bar experience and loved the bar!!  It was amazing.  It was a softer bar but it had plenty of crunch.  It tasted like the inside part of a Snickers Peanut Butter egg from Easter but way more nutritious.   There 2013-03-06 15.26.52were also pieces of dates and cranberries which added sweetness and tartness in some bites.  The crunch in the bar was from pumpkin seeds, walnuts and cashews.  The bar has a bit of sea salt which took the bar over the top of other bars for me.  This bar was awesome! They aren’t available locally yet, but with the Picky Club, I can have 18 bars delivered monthly for $37.  They also have boxes of 10 bars available too.  Definitely contemplating signing up, they were that good.

So in true sample hoarding fashion, I am hanging on to the two Power Ice freezer bars.  I want to fully enjoy one of those after a long hot humid Summer run.  I dream of finishing a run and cooling down with one of those; they are perfect for that.  I gave the two Peanut Butter GUs to my hubby.  GU and my tummy just do not get along well.  I should have put my Run Guard into my gym bag already.  I ended up getting a slight burning under by arm on Sunday’s long run and instead of using lip balm to calm down the chafing, I could have used this.  Lesson learned, it’s in my bag now.

The fab pink wrist wallet from Given Brand is now in my gym bag.  I am planning on using it today on my run.  I usually wear shorts or capris with small key pockets already, so I need to consciously make an effort to use this one.  As far as the last two products, Win sports detergent and Click protein drink, yup, you guessed it, I haven’t tried those either.  I have a hard time incorporating the samples that are out of my normal routine.  I need to make a conscious effort to remember to use these.  I have a few more days left before my new box arrives, so I hope to finish sampling the rest of this one first.  But knowing how I am, I’ll probably still have some things hanging around.

March StrideBox! It’s here! It’s here!

2013-03-04 18.20.48I was so excited to see my first StrideBox sitting in my kitchen counter when I got home from exercising yesterday!  It was the perfect pick-me-up for a Monday!  Since I had no idea what to expect inside of it, I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of products in the box.  As I mentioned in a previous post, I signed up last month right as the February boxes were shipped out, so I had to wait a whole month for mine!

When I first opened the box, tore open the tissue paper wrapping and checked out The Stride Guide (a list of all the products included), I was thrilled to see something fabulously hot pink staring back at me.  It was a Given Brand – Original Flip Pocket Wrist Wallet (retail: $10.95).  It is awesome!  Perfect sized band with a handy pocket that will easily fit a key, some cash and an ID on a run.  I can’t wait to use it tomorrow.

Next I checked out two long tubes of PowerICE (retail: $8.99/6 pack), one is Lime Kicker and the other is Orange Blast .  Oh my gosh, these are freeze pops with electrolytes!  The suggestion on the card says to consume one 15-30 minutes before a run, but I might be interested in trying them on a summer day after running.  These will make the perfect treat! Totally helping to cool your core temp after a hot run.  Can’t wait to try this!

There were two different bars in the box, a Picky Bar (retail: $22.99 for 10 bars) and a Kind Bar (retail: $1.99 a bar).  I thought the Picky Bar was super cute, great packaging! The flavor in my box was Lauren’s Mega Nuts *Peanut Butter Booyah*.  It is a gluten and dairy free energy bar especially designed for athletes.  I’ll definitely try give it a try this week as my afternoon snack before I head out for a run.  The other bar is already one of my favorites, Kind Bar Dark Chocolate Nuts & 2013-03-04 18.24.15Sea Salt.  This bar combines my favorite flavors, chocolate and sea salt.  I was definitely happy to see this in the box!

After digging deeper into the box, I found two GU Energy Gels, peanut butter flavor (retail: $11.60/8 gels).  Though I don’t normally use gels on my runs, they tend to upset my tummy, I might give this one a try.  I have several friends who use GU so if my tummy can’t tolerate it, I can pass it along to them.

Next, there was a packet for Mocha Click Espresso Protein Drink (retail $2.95/packet).  It has only 120 calories and packs the punch of a double shot of Espresso coffee.  You can “click your way” and make it hot, cold or blended by just adding water.  Love the options!  This might be a great pre-run beverage in lieu of my normal cup of coffee.

Near the bottom of the box were the last two products, a travel size of Run Guard – Original Anti Chafe Stick (retail: $3.95/travel size) and a one use size Win Sports Detergent ($1.00/travel size).  Run Guard is the new product from Nip Guard.  It is the perfect size to keep in my gym bag.  I’ll be interested to compare it to the other two types of anti chafing products I use already.  I’m always looking for the best products that not only work great, but are cost effective too.  And at $3.95 for a travel size, that’s a great price!  The Win Sports Detergent is made to help remove that sweaty smell that hangs out on workout clothes, even after you wash them.  I will also be comparing this to the detergent that I current use that’s also formulated to remove workout stink from clothes.  Can’t wait to put it to the test!

Overall, I’m totally stoked about my StrideBox.  For the $15 I spent for this month’s box, the box contained just over $26 worth of products.  In addition, The Stride Guide also included some discounts for some of the products, so if I wanted to purchase any of them, I could save some cash.stridebox march

Once I try the products, I’ll be sure to share my thoughts in a future blog post.

“Birchbox” for Runners?! Awesome!

I love my monthly Birchbox shipment.  What girls wouldn’t love a beautifully wrapped box of beauty samples and other fun goodies!  Don’t worry, guys, theybirchbox-homepage-600x298-dec didn’t forget about you, they also have Birchbox Man.  In any given box, there are usually 6-8 high end samples for face cream to shampoo and nail polish to lip gloss.  Each box is based on your own personal beauty profile which you can update at any time. Some boxes have even had some cute goodies such as headphones, hair ties and chocolate covered potato chips!  The ability to try products first without spending hefty price tags is also a huge benefit.  I’ve purchased full size items of some of the samples I tried and found out others didn’t really live up to the promises.  Stupid stretch marks, I had such high hopes for that cream too!  Every month is a surprise and I love Birchbox delivery day!

While I was looking at details about #Runchat’s I love Running challenge, I saw one of the prizes listed was a monthly subscription for Strideboxsb-three-samplesThey described it as a monthly box of assorted running products (apparel, nutrition, accessories, etc.).  I had to check that out, it sounded just like Birchbox, but for runners! What a brilliant idea!  I clicked on their site and immediately signed up for the first month once I read the details.  At $15 a box, I felt like that was really reasonable and what a great way to try out new products.  Just like Birchbox, you can cancel your subscription at any time.  They just sent out the February boxes, so I’m anxiously awaiting the March delivery.  Once the box arrives, I’ll be sure to share my thoughts about it.

Now, I’ll have two days to look forward to each month, Birchbox and Stridebox days!

Life is full of challenges and surprises.

~Jill Sander