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!
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 noon on Monday. We love reading about everyone's 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...please don't link-drop & dash ;-)
As mentioned, this was an especially warm week in Iowa. We had several days with temps in the upper 80's, all of them with heavy humidity. Going into the weekend, we enjoyed three continuous days of excessive heat warnings. Yikes!
Here's what went down this week in my little world of fitness:
Monday - Never Miss a Monday!
With my MCM 26.2 training on the verge of officially beginning, I planned to run three miles (with surges for the last 1/4 mile of each mile) instead of the usual 2-mile Monday run. Well, within the first 1/2-mile, I knew that plan wouldn't be happening. I re-routed, shortening the route to 2.5 miles, and (then) planned to walk the final 1/2-mile back home. I made it to the 2-mile mark, and slowed to a walk...and caught a glimpse of this little white flag. How's that for timing! We all have to wave the (virtual) white flag from time to time, but how often does one actually appear? Anyways, I'm not sure why my body felt off, but my gut told me to ease up and not be a hero. Did I feel defeated? Not in the least! I was coming off a pretty incredible weekend (a 20-mile bike ride and two AG placings at two very hot and humid races), so I think my endorphins may have finally crashed and my body was simply tired. No. Big. Deal. Sometimes, things just don't feel right, and the best you can do is walk away (literally LOL) and not dwell on it. Maybe a little white flag will magically appear and make you smile.
Typically, Tuesdays are rest/recovery days for me...but as I was going to bed Monday evening, I got the idea to go for a bike ride the next morning instead of "just" the ritual power walk amid the sunrise. There's a 5K route that goes right by my house, and is relatively flat (except for a couple of rolling hills on one of the roads and the gradual hill on my street). I did three laps, and extended each lap enough to make my total distance 10 miles. In case you were wondering, that has never happened on a work day before. There's a good chance it may become a new thing in my fitness regimen, though. Stay tuned.
As per usual, I met up with Barb for our weekly early morning 5-miler. The 70F temps felt mild, but the humidity was already thick. None the less, the miles went fast, all my water was depleted, and we had a beautiful, lingering full moon to admire.
Another hot day was already in the works (78F at 6:00 a.m.), but I still enjoy getting outside...this time on our side patio. It's a good thing I'm not afraid of letting others see me sweat! My coach was watching through the window, the next-door neighbors' dogs were cheering me on (loudly, through their window), and even a few passersby in the street gave me odd looks. Anyways, I like combining HIIT workouts with intermittent speed drills since both enhance the other and (ultimately) make me a stronger runner. This was a workout I created a few months ago...including pushups, burpees, arm/shoulder strength moves, mountain climbers, plank jacks and hill sprints (run on the street). Six sets of the circuit took just under 30 minutes, netted me a (combined) mile in running, with 60 total pushups, 30 total burpees, 90 total strength reps (arms/shoulders), and 120 sets of mountain climbers and plank jacks. Needless to say, there was profuse sweating happening.
Currently at my place of work, we have a summer wellness challenge going on. We're on teams of five, and the teams are competing for total minutes of exercise and miles run/walked/biked (over the course of 14 weeks). Fellow friend and team member, Michele, agreed to meet up with me and tackle the hilly 15-mile trail out to the lake on Friday morning, before work. We left my driveway at 5:30 and were back about 75 minutes later. This was Michele's first time riding the trail all the way to the lake (and it was now my fifth time in the past four weeks). Her and and I are already scheming to make it a weekly routine, possibly with more co-workers in tow. Stay tuned for that as well.
You know what they say about the best-laid plans, right? I had planned to do a solo 12-mile run Saturday morning. Well, technically, it was going to be two 6-mile out-and-backs, with the option to stop after the first leg if the temps felt too oppressive (another excessive heat warming was underway). I was going to leave early, on or about 5:00, with the hopes of being completely done before 7:00. Only, I dozed back off after my alarm...and didn't wake until well after 7:00. The temps were already 81F, with a feels-like of 86F, and the humidity was thick. I knew 12 miles would not be happening under those conditions, so I decided to do a 4-mile route instead. I ran the miles pretty steady (9:59/10:02/10:16/10:13) and walked a few times for water breaks. All went well, and I was a glistening and glowing vision of loveliness (NOT!) when I finished. None the less, I was happy to get done what I could. These temps are nothing to mess with...obviously, I chose hot temps outside over a treadmill run inside, but I knew to run those miles easy, brought water, and kept the run short. I also refueled/rehydrated profusely afterwards. There may have also been a nap LOL
In light of Saturday's botched long run, I tentatively made plans with Me, Myself, and I to get up early Sunday and head out to (hopefully) redeem my running soul (and soles LOL). I wasn't asking for much, just the remaining eight miles that didn't get knocked out the day prior. We had a cold front come through earlier than expected...rain Saturday evening, as well a substantial drop in temps. The humidity, however, was still pretty heavy. None the less, the conditions were much better for a long run. The miles felt somewhat slow for awhile. Near the 7-mile mark, though, my energy jolted. I decided to re-route and go for 10 miles instead since I no longer felt like I was dragging. Amazingly, the final miles felt good; not effortless, but much better than the previous six. Upon returning home, I decided to take Gustavas for a quick 3-mile ride, which also helped "flush out" my legs. It's not often that a surge of energy appears on a muggy day, especially near the end of a blah run, so I'm glad I was able to take advantage of it...too bad that doesn't happen all the time, right?
In case you missed out, here's what went down on the blog this week:
Going All Out
Midnight Madness 2019 15K Recap
Running Walking Biking in the HEAT
In other news:
Friday Fashion Flair on Instagram...With the warm temps of summer, I often times am dressed in sleeveless tops. Seriously, they are my go-to, and I can just throw on a cardi if the indoor temps are too cold. Anyways, I love a top with funky ruching details...they give the fabric more interest and usually a better, more flattering fit. If it's a bright Kelly green, all the better. Add some jewelry and funky shoes and you're all set. Do you have a favorite summer go-to wardrobe piece? If you want to play along, you can join me on Fridays...post a pic of an outfit, grab the hashtag (#FridayFashionFlair) and tag me(@runningonthefly).
For example, from February 15, 2019:
It was another chilly morning,
So on the treadmill I did hide.
I powered through a boring run
And took a sweaty selfie outside.
On a happy note, we celebrated another birthday in our household. Our son turned 22 earlier this week...WOW. Time needs to slow down...
And, on a sad note, it was a year ago this week that Mollie Tibbetts went missing. Sadly, I did not know her personally, but our youngest daughter did. Mollie left a big mark on the world, and huge shoes to fill in her service to others and her #bethelight mentality. She not only was a daughter, a sister, and friend (to many), but she also was a runner. She may be gone, but she is not forgotten.
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