Thursday, August 22, 2019

Biking - Running's Perfect Partner

I certainly never could have seen this coming.

So many miles (many of which happened in the wee hours)! It got my heart pumping, I was blessed with some fasted cardio, and there was plenty of sweat equity earned along the way.

There were some flat routes, and there were many hills climbed as well. My endurance, as well as my grit, was tested on numerous occasions. And, each time I finished...feeling quite accomplished.

I'm talking about my new fitness fix - biking. And it has been a total game changer for me this summer.

Monday, August 19, 2019

8 Tips to Get You Race Day Ready

How well do you prepare for Race Day?

You've (hopefully) done all the necessary training. Preparing for the big race day, though, involves more than just logging miles in your running shoes. 

I've been running (and racing) for over 14 years. Needless to say, I have learned a lot through trial and error (emphasis on the errors).

A little planning ahead of time can ease the race day stress. It may not eliminate the start line nerves, but having a lot of the details ironed out before the big day will make getting there a little easier. 

Sunday, August 18, 2019

This week's Fitness? All kinds of "F" bombs...

This week had so many "F-it!" moments...but all in a good way.

Perhaps I should elaborate, a bit? We're talking fitness, after all. Some of these moments were fun and freaky, some demanded unexpected flexibilty with my schedule, and there may have been a few (or several) filters used in the pics highlighting said moments.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Running - Doing it My Way

The comparison game is a bunch of crock.

I think we've all played it to some extent (at least I know I have). We've played this stupid game as women, as moms, as friends, as community volunteers, as wives, and as athletes. It does us no good. And, quite frankly, I'm done with it.

 Enter the genre of running and it can get especially tricky. It's really quite ridiculous, after all, to compare one's running abilities, objectives or standards to those of others. After all, we have different genetic makeup, varying degrees of "free" time (for training), and we all are driven by different stimuli.

I have long contemplated where I fit in within the sport of running, and I have tried to be a "real runner." It's only in recent years that I finally realized we all define "real runner" by our own individual goals and aspirations. And, finally, in recent years, I have achieved true contentment with MY running.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

There's the SUN, let's get it DONE

Oh, how I love the sunshine!  I certainly love being outside as much as possible. Thankfully, it was a week full of both.

Even though the sunrises are happening a bit later than I'd prefer (and the sunsets are happening earlier), I'm still enjoying the great outdoors. I  have been #optingoutside on a daily basis, which is perfection in my world. No regrets!

Thursday, August 8, 2019

4-Letter Words for Runners (that aren't so bad)

There are certain 4-letter words that many runners consider taboo.

Quite often, these words are usually spoken (in public, at least) with the utmost distaste. For a lot of  people, the best solution is to simply avoid them. Out of sight, out of mind, right?

...but what about that comfort zone?

Monday, August 5, 2019

Family Fitness in the running shoes

Got family? How about running shoes? Ever combine the two?

I don't have a lot of experiences running with my family, per se, but I do have some pretty great memories none the less. Even if they're not always by my side at the start line, they've been a significant part of my support system....and there have been a few races in the mix as well.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

By the Dawn’s Early Light

What can I say? I love the early mornings!

With an 8:00 a.m. start to my workday, it works out best to get my fitness fix(es) done bright and early. This past week was no exception to that routine. I was blessed with near-perfect weather (though a bit chilly on a couple mornings) and a bounty of beautiful sunrises.

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Shall we chat? ...over chai?

Shall we chat? Over chai?

Well, if you're more of a coffee person, I'm totally good with that. Either way, what say we grab our mugs, find a table, and have some chatter.

What would you share if we were having coffee (or chai) together?

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

2019 Bix-7 Recap

Supposedly, the third time is the charm. For myself, though, the fourth time was where the magic happened.

I'm talking about the Quad City Times Bix-7. This past weekend, I returned to this famous event (after a 5-year hiatus), with all kinds of hopes and aspirations for a PR. After all, 2019 has been pretty kind to me in terms of my racing endeavors, including a couple of hot and humid races earlier this month. Why not hope for the best?

Sunday, July 28, 2019

A week of Miles and Smiles

Well, it's been quite a week, from start to finish.

There's been running (duh!). I've done some walking (nothing new there). Speedwork made a reappearance (it's been awhile...). There was quite a bit of action on the bike (what the WHAT?!?).

The week played out nicely, and I'll be smiling about this week for quite some time.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

'Fessing up for July

 Well, what's to runfess this month?

Quite honestly, I don't have much to grumble about. My mileage has been decent. I've had a few races, and those have gone well. My cross-training has been legit. Everyone's in good health....

...but there a few things I'll share. After all, it's that time of the month...time to Runfess so we can all sleep a little better at night (since a lot of us probably have an early-morning workout on tap).

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Riding The HEAT WAVE

Shall we talk about the 2019 heat wave?

Recently, Momma N dropped a major heat wave on most of the US. Honestly, it happens every year (most likely, several times, depending on where you call home). But doesn't it always seem to be the "hottest one on record?"

It is Summer, after all, and Summer is historically hot, at least in my area. Instead of cowering inside, wishing it away, I try to make the best of it and enjoy it for what it's worth. As I have said (repeatedly, in recent weeks), I'll take this melting heat, any day, over the freeze of Winter. At least it ain't snowing, right? We gotta keep that frosty mug half full!

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Running Walking Biking in the HEAT

Baby it's hot outside...

Trust me, I am NOT complaining (remember, I waited 10 months for summer to return to Iowa). The heat does make it a bit more of a challenge to enjoy the great outdoors, though.

I'm still taking most of my cardio workouts outdoors. Even when the mercury is off the charts, and it's hotter than Hades, I usually shun the inside option. I figure if I'm gonna be sweating anyways, I might as well enjoy the scenery.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Midnight Madness 2019 15K Recap

Here we go again!

I first took part in the Midnight Madness Races in 2016. I was registered for the 15K (which is the combo of the 5K and the 10K, run back-to-back on the same evening). Long story short, it didn't go well; the 5K resulted in a personal worst (thanks to a major struggle bus adventure) and I pulled out of the 10K after the first mile (my one and only DNF to date). I had some wonky hip flexor thing going on and I should not have even started the first race.

I returned in 2018, hungry for redemption. I ran the 5K much better (5th place AG), and also was able to snag a 3rd place AG in the 10K. Redemption was all mine.

This past weekend, I returned to defend my 10K AG honors, here's what happened...

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Going All Out

Sometimes, you just go all out and hang on tight.

It's been an exciting week, complete with a dramatic roller coaster ride in terms of weather, fitness, and all things outside.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Say hello to Gustavas

It's been a long time coming.

Not my getting a bike, but actually christening said bike with an official name.

But let's rewind for a minute...

Monday, July 8, 2019

Fifth Season Health Solutions 8K Race Recap

I'm all about a running a race on a significant holiday, and the 4th of July is no exception.

I love dressing for the occasion (in red, white and blue). Here in the Midwest, it's usually going to be warm, so that eliminates the stress of proper layering. Independence Day is a holiday that brings a lot of people out of hiding, so crowd support is usually a given. And if it's a new-to-me event, all the better!

Thursday, July 4th, was the date, and Cedar Rapids, IA was the setting for the 34th year of the Fifth Season Health Solutions Races. My friend, Barb, and myself were doing the 8K, while the hubby was running the 5K. The start time was 8:00 for the 8K and 8:15 for the 5K...and we were excited!

Sunday, July 7, 2019

What day is it...again?

It's been an out-of-sorts kind of week.

The temps were especially muggy, there was a holiday, and I ran a mid-week race. All of which was great, but I think I spent the majority of the week in a state of confusion and flux. First world probs, right?

Thursday, July 4, 2019

A Coffee Date...shall we?

If we were having coffee, I'd probably be opting for water.

How's that for a buzzkill on this much-awaited, monthly coffee get-together? It's not that I'm anti-coffee...I simply just do not care for the taste of it. But, I could sit in a coffee shop all day, basking in the heavenly aroma of the stuff.

That said, it's gotten so hot in Iowa ((finally)), that I'm slamming the water like it's my job. That's all good...the heat AND all the water. Glass half full (no pun intended LOL).

Anyways, there's a lot of stuff I'd share with you, as you enjoy your java...

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

A journey of Gratitude

It's been an interesting two years.

It hasn't been easy, but it's been very enlightening. Definitely not a journey I'd choose to repeat, nor wish on anyone else, but it left me with some valuable lessons. And I'm ever grateful for the experience.

In case there's any doubts, I'm talking about my journey with Voldy.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Suddenly Summer!

Suddenly, it's Summer!!!!

That's right, Friends, the calendar proclaimed it to be summer (over a week ago), and it finally feels like it has officially full steam, none the less.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Runfessions for June

Gosh it seems like I was just runfessing to y'all, like last week.

As per usual, lots of stuff has been happening, in the running shoes and otherwise.  We stay "young" by staying active, right? At least that's my theory.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Running is a choice; My Choice

I have made some interesting choices recently, and all have come with interesting outcomes.

What's especially interesting is how many of these choices all came together on an unsuspecting #nevermissaMonday run.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Welcome to...Summer (?)

Happy Summer...or is it?

Seriously, Momma N!  Can you cut us a (weather) break?

The calendar officially indicates it is Summer, but the temps have still been waivering in Iowa. Granted, at least it isn't snowing, but this warm-weather gal really wants the real feel of summer. Anyways, that's all minimal. I was still able to get outside everyday, so things are good.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Hot Summer RUNNING

Some like it hot, and some not so much.

We're talking about running here, specifically running in the summer heat!

I'm all about running in the hot summer temps. Granted, I realize I'm one of very few who glorifies the summer heat...but it's really not THAT bad. Honestly!

Monday, June 17, 2019

The Allure of a Local Race

Big cities and big races are a big draw for a lot of runners, but there's a certain allure of a local race.

Case in point, my hometown event...the Grinnell Games.

Have you ever run such a race? An event that you could walk (or run or bike) to the start line? It's nice when most of the law enforcement personnel, manning the intersections, call you by name (and not because you've been a bad girl). And, as a bonus, you recognize all of the race volunteers on the street corners and can personally thank them, by using their name.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Easy Does It

 Sometimes, taking things easy just happens, all on its own. More often than not, that's a good thing.

My body wasn't feeling especially tired, and my motivation was fine (even with the questionable weather), but the (running) miles stayed somewhat low...and I'm alright with that. Besides, I had  plenty of other things to keep me active.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Where to run...And how far?

Some runners can be SO predictable.

Are you one of them? Do you find yourself running the same routes all the time? Or do you try to mix it up once in awhile?

Monday, June 10, 2019

Early Morning Running is Where It's At!

I'm all about the early morning hours.

Lacing up and heading out in the pre-dawn hours can be an opportune time to knock out some miles, especially in the summer months. Even if the humidity is already heavy, with the sun low in the morning sky, the summer heat will usually be at its lowest for the day.

What's to love about the early morning runs?  Let me elaborate...

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Feelin' the Heat on the Street

The heat is on...and I couldn't be happier!

We had a l.o.n.g and frigid winter, and a cold and rainy spring (that wasn't a whole lot warmer than winter). At long last, it feels like summer is here. Can I get an alleluia?

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

DAM to DSM 20K - 2019 Race Recap

As one era ended, another began. And, I'm quite happy how everything played out.

Saturday, June 1, was a day I'd been anticipating. About 18 months or so prior, my beloved Dam to Dam race had announced it would be ending, and the June 2, 2018 race (RECAP) would be its final hurrah. A very short while later, a new race management team (Rip Roar) stepped in, and took the reigns. They committed to keeping the Dam race alive, using the same course (and keeping it the same 20K distance), and they changed the name to DAM to DSM.

The inaugural DAM to DSM 20K happened this past weekend, and here's the story...

Sunday, June 2, 2019

In a DAZE of the DOMS

The DOMS? I get them from time-to-time, but this past week the DOMS were front and center.

Good old reliable Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. We've all had them. Although they can be rather burdensome, they are not necessarily a bad thing. Life goes on, and so does fitness...

Thursday, May 30, 2019

So...Let's Runfess Already

Shall we Runfess to one another?

It's been an entire month since we all gathered, virtually, over coffee (or any other beverage of choice), and chatted. Actually, these are some of the most fun posts to write (and read).

Here's the latest from my little corner of the universe....

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

My First Murph

I'm always up for a challenge.

I'm also a proud American with an overwhelming amount of patriotism, and have a strong tie to all things military.

I'd first heard of the Murph a year ago, and had kind of forgotten about it. Then, with it being Memorial Day Weekend, I started seeing all sorts of pics and posts about it. Not one (usually) to sit quietly on the sidelines, I wanted in.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Here Comes the Rain...Again

 Yes, there was a lot of rain happening this past week.

Fortunately, we didn't get as much rain as forecast, but we did get plenty. And that rain was happening in rather chilly temps, so it didn't even feel refreshing. How's that for a buzzkill?

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Five ways to honor Memorial Day in your running shoes

All gave some; some gave all.

Memorial Day is all about honoring our fallen heroes. Most little towns, big cities, and mid-size communities have some kind of tribute to memorialize those who served in the armed forces (but are no longer with us). There are graveside ceremonies, town hall concerts, and parades.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Ending on a Bright Note

Warm, cold, rainy, hot, more rain, followed by more heat. I'm just glad all is well that ended well.

Such is this past week's story... not only for the weather, but also the running. There was all kinds of variety, and that's never a bad thing.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Running Against the Wind - Market-to-Market Relay 2019

We were running against the wind. All five of us. All day.

But, hey, at least we outran the rain!

Such was the day for our team at the 2019 Market to Market Relay on Saturday, May 11th. The temps were chilly (it never got warmer than 55F), the air was damp, and the wind was brutal. That said, it still was a fun adventure in our five sets of running shoes.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Walk Much?

To walk or to run...which would YOU choose?

Until a couple years ago, my answer would have (obviously) been to run. No second thoughts, no debate. 

Although walking and running share a lot of the same traits and features (more walking benefits HERE), I have noticed a few differences that are often over-looked. It wasn't until I was forced to substitute walking for running (after that emergency surgery in 2017) that I finally got it. I not only recognized these differences, but also learned to respect them.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Brrrrr...brrrr...brrring on Spring, please...

Well, it's been a cold one....

Correct me if I'm mistaken, but I thought it was May (?). Shouldn't we be well-past the temps of winter? Thankfully, we're past the fear of snow...but just barely.

But first things first...

Welcome to the Weekly Run Down! I am so excited to host this link-up with Deborah (from Confessions of a Mother Runner). If you write a fitness-based blog, you're invited to join the party. The link-up opens at 1:00 (EST) on Sundays and remains open through Monday (noon). Please share your weekly fitness endeavors, training highlights (or low lights) and race recaps. We ask that you link back to both hosts, and we encourage you to read/comment on the other linked blogs as well.

Here's the Run Down on what happened last week:

Never miss a Monday

Knowing the temps were due to plummet (and that rain was on the way), I decided to get out for an early-morning 2-miler. The morning sunshine was just emerging, and all the blooms were looking so beautiful.

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Opt Inside Tuesday

The rain had not yet come, but the air was damp, the wind was crazy and the temps were cold outside. Fasted cardio, inside (via 25 minutes on the elliptical), was the perfect solution.

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Opt Inside (again) Wednesday

The rain had started Tuesday evening, and continued through much of the night. The temps were flirting with near-freezing as well. It had been a long time since I'd had a nearly inactive, true rest/recovery day. I did 20ish minutes of yoga, in the early hours, and (other than a 1-mile walk with Max after work), that was it. No fasted cardio, no HIIT, no elliptical, no running or walking. And all was well.

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Action-packed Thursday

Barb and I had thought about heading out for a #5at5, but a few quick texts back and forth (at 04:30), and we both were in agreement to postpone. The rain had been much less of a issue than was forecast, and had actually ceased mid-Wednesday afternoon (It had been forecast to last the entire day and into the evening). That said, the air was mucho humid and the wind was nutzo (ahem, a continuous 22 mph). Stuck inside, I hopped on the elliptical for 25 minutes and did some upper-body strength work.

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Later, after work, Barb and I were able to get in five miles at the lake. Seeing all the random trash strewn alongside the trail, we grabbed a couple of bags from my car and did some clean-up after we finished running. I seriously do not know how people can be so disrespectful and lazy.

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Freezing Friday

I was majorly confused exactly what season it was in Iowa on Friday morning. There was lots of bright sunshine (summer?). The blooms on the trees were fragrant (spring?). But the temps were barely above freezing (winter?). Thankfully, by noon, things shaped up.

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Teamwork Saturday

Saturday started with a 3:50 a.m.wake-up, followed by a 4:45 a.m. departure to make it to our 7:15 wave start. I was on a team of co-workers, and we had 76 miles to tackle in the Market-to-Market Relay. The temps (again) were cold (low-50F's), crazy windy, and the air was damp. That said, we had a great time trekking and running across some of Iowa's trails and small towns. I ran a total of just over 15 miles (over the course of three different legs), and I slept quite soundly that evening. Full recap will be posted this week...stay tuned.

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...and a restful Sunday

Somehow, even with a short night Friday, and a long day on Saturday, my body was still awake and alert around 6:00 a.m. Not sure how that happens, but after lounging (and trying to unsuccessfully fall back to sleep), I got up and went for a walk with the hubby and Max. Thankfully, all of my muscles felt fine and not too weary from the prior day's running adventures. And, yes, the temps were STILL cold (mid-40F's). Later, after church, there was a nice lunch with the hubby and two (of the three) kiddos and a late afternoon dinner with my parents. Life is good!

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So, all in all, it was a pretty restful week. The mileage crept up to 22 (for running), but 15 of that was from Saturday's relay. The walking kept me active (approx. 10 miles) without overdoing it. It felt great to get that upper-body workout in on Thursday. The 50 (cumulative) minutes of elliptical and Wednesday's yoga gave me a good mix of fitness. All is well.

In case you missed out, here's what happened on the blog this week:

Spring Is In The Air (sort of)

Armed & Ready

Friday Favorites...What I've been loving lately

In other news:

FridayFashionFlair... Did you see it on Insta? Is there a better warm weather color than navy? It's like a toned-down black, but not as dark. Pairing it with white and that classic nautical combo always looks sharp. As usual, feel free to join the fashion party...(1) post a pic of a featured outfit, (2) grab the hashtag (#FridayFashionFlair) and (3) give me a tag (@runningonthefly).

Despite the winter-like temps, we have been enjoying all kinds of spring beauty...

Finally, last but not least, I want to wish a blessed Mother's Day to all of you moms out there.

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How was YOUR week? Lots of fitness? Seasonal temps? Rest or recovery? Are your spring flowers still in bloom?

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