Sunday, June 17, 2018

All is well


 I can honestly say, "All is well."

It wasn't necessarily a stellar week in terms of high mileage or specific training goals met, but it definitely was pretty solid in terms of fitness and feeling good. Here's what all went down...


On Monday, I got outside for a couple of early morning #nevermissaMonday miles. If you recall, I had had a rather tough 8-mile run two days prior. Typically, I do a short (1-2 mile) shakeout run the day after a long run or race, but elected to take a pass last Sunday. I was anticipating a slow and sluggish run on Monday morning, but  was rewarded with two rather fast and effortless miles instead. Apparently that low-key Sunday was just what my body needed. After an extended hot spell, we also had cooler temps, so that was a double bonus!
Even in the cool temps, I managed to get my sweat on..
Tuesdays are usually active recovery days, so there were no miles run. There were several miles walked, though, and some moderate strength work (arms/shoulder strength-training and a couple of catch-up sessions for the Arms and Abs Challenge).
Is there anything better than having the entire road to yourself in the early morning hours?
Wednesday brought us a return to the summer-like temps. I was out the door by 5:00 a.m. for the weekly #5at5 with my friend, Barb. And I was glowing all over the place when I returned (sweat equity, anyone?).
Another five miles at 05:00
Thursday, how about we return to some speedwork? With Dam to Dam over and done (June 2nd), and the previous week's focus on recovery, it had been a couple weeks since I'd done any speed training. We had heavy rain (and lightning) in the morning, so I postponed my run until after work. I did a 1-mile warm-up run, then ran five sets of Fartleks (back and forth along a sidewalk, approximately the length of two city blocks). I'm not sure how crazy I may have looked to any onlookers, sprinting (sort of) in one direction, then turning and (slowly) jogging back. What always amazes me about doing speed drills, though, is that each subsequent "sprint" seems to get faster without much extra effort. Doing the five sets (plus the 1-mile warm-up) netted me three total miles. I walked the half mile back home, feeling pretty accomplished.
Two miles of Fartleks along an unsuspecting sidewalk
Friday was another day of active rest/recovery. My legs felt pretty trashed, not just from the previous day's speed session but also from the series of burpees and plank jacks I did first thing in the morning. Let's just say that Max took ME for the morning walk that day, but there is a certain kind of satisfaction in feeling every muscle in your legs flex with each step.
Morning walk with Max
Saturday morning was the Grinnell Games 5K. This is a local event our town hosts every summer, and we always seem to nail it with extremely hot (and usually humid) weather. I have always run the half marathon (except for the one year they substituted a 10K in place of it), but this year I decided to test the waters of the 5K. I knew the temps were gonna be warm...

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My town, Grinnell would be the lower right "corner" of the Des Moines, Ames, Marshalltown "square"
....so I headed out early for a 3-mile warm-up (electing to do the extra miles before the race rather than after). I seldom, if ever, complain about warm weather, but Saturday morning was flirting with brutal conditions. I took a throwaway water bottle with me, and sipped on that for the "warm-up" run. When I got to the race site, I had about 20 minutes until the start time, and I was a major sweaty mess. I did a little stretching, and tossed the water bottle (I knew there would be water on the race course).

All things considered, the race went well, but it was hot! The air felt really heavy with humidity, too. As usual, I ran the first mile much faster than I realized. My watch showed 8:13, which is faster than I prefer on such a hot morning, especially for mile-1. My right hip and hamstring have both been a little wonky ever since the Drake Relays weekend (almost two months ago), and even with the 3-mile warm-up, they still felt tight and grumpy, so that fast mile was a surprise. Of course, I paid for it in miles 2 and 3, with much slower splits. I also walked briefly through the two water stations, so that added a few extra seconds (15 total?) to my finish time. Oh well, I wasn't gunning for a PR or a first place victory anyways. I'm just happy to be able to enjoy the gift of running, and supporting a local race is always a priority.
Yes, that was a sweaty endeavor!
Sunday was a low key day of active recovery. I got out for a morning walk, and did some garden squats (and more walking) in the afternoon. I also did plenty more sweating in the mid-90's temps.
Image may contain: one or more people, people standing, shoes, tree and outdoor
up and out the door....
So, the running mileage (Monday through Sunday) came in at 16, and with all the daily walking I've been doing, I'm feeling good. I have been doing a lot more walking recently, and doing daily leg lifts and wall sits as well. Just this week, I noticed a substantial change in the shape of my legs...they're looking a lot more toned and I can see more muscle definition, especially in my thighs. A true lesson in patience and perseverance... the results do not happen overnight, but the results will come if you put in the work.

In case you missed out, here's my blog posts from last week:
True Colors Shining Through
Never Have I Ever...
In other news:
Did you catch my #FridayFashionFlair post on Instagram (@Runningonthefly)? I don't buy a lot of new clothes each season, but I do get bored with what's in my closet (who doesn't?). My solution is to mix and match what's there, and pair up contrasting color combos. What do you think about orange and teal? Orange is not my most flattering color, but when it's paired with an equally bright color, there's less focus on it. Of course, I always add some funky jewelry and the (required) lipstick (#priorities). You're welcome to play along...post a pic of your Friday outfit and tag me!
Orange and teal....
The Dam to Dam pics were posted this past week, and there were some good ones of the daughter and myself. Running her into the finish line was such a proud mom moment...I had to play around with some fun filters on one of the pics and make it my own.
There's nothing greater than witnessing the accomplishments of others
And, finally, are you a Rock'n'Roll Marathon fan? They host events all over the world, and as a member of the Rock'n'Blog team, I have a discount code to share with you. I'm headed to Chicago (July 21-22), and there's already a slew of fun running pals headed there as well. I'm also considering Philly (Sept. 15-16) and Savannah (Nov. 3-4). Will I see you at any of them?

So, that's my week, tell me a little about yours....hotter than Hades weather? Any recent races? Do you try to support local races, even if the weather is uncomfortable? Ever Fartlek'd?

I'm linking up with Holly and Wendy for the Weekly Wrap. This weekly check-in is such a great place to connect with fellow fitness-minded peeps. Please join us!

50 comments:

  1. Glad to hear all your hard work is paying off!

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    1. It's crazy how the results just suddenly appear (after a few months of work LOL).

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  2. I love workouts with fartleks. So fun! And you're right, they can get faster with that much more effort. That may be my favorite part! LOL

    That's the best feeling when you start noticing your gains. :)

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    1. Fartleks are definitely more fun than some of the other speedwork drills ;-)

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  3. That is a great race photo! The summer races are really hard to regulate speed and I usually go out too fast as well and then I am dying in mile 3. Hard lesson to learn!

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    1. I'm glad we have summer races in my area...but, yes, the temps are a little tricky

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  4. Sounds like that was a really warm race! Summer races are usually a struggle for me. Looks like a great week of workouts!

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    1. It was a really hot race LOL I don't know if the 3-mile warm-up helped or hurt me...

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  5. Way to go on the speed work! I love the picture of you and your daughter from the race. How wonderful you go to run together :)

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    1. I'm definitely glad I could be there for her at the finish, it was such an awesome thing to experience!

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  7. Wow, that weather map is so red! Great pic with your daughter - I love what you did to it too!

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  8. Wow that was a hot race day. Glad you finished without incident!

    I too always wonder what neighbors or by passers think when I'm doing running workouts!

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    1. Thankfully, I did this on the college campus and most of the students are gone for the summer....

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  9. Great job with the hot 5k! We don't have many races in the heat of summer. If fact, I don't think there is a local race until September. That's a great pic of you and your daughter. Thanks for linking!

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    1. We have a lot of summer races in my area, but the weather can be a game-changer on "racing" vs. "running"

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  10. I'm definitely feeling the hot and humid weather with ya...but I'm swimming ;) I was super excited to FINALLY join your Friday Fashion Flair link-up. So fun seeing what everyone's wearing outside of fitness gear!

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    1. I'm SOOO glad you joined us, too, on Friday!! I agree...it's fun to see people in "real" cloithes

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  11. I totally am a believer in rest, so I'm not surprised that your rest last Sunday gave you a boost for Monday. The rest of the week looks good too. you don't have to break records or put in hundreds of miles to have a good week. Incredible how hot it was for your 5K though. UGH. not a fan. Wish I could join you guys at Chicago - unfortunately the flight is just too expensive for me (I looked into Philly as well but it's just the wrong timing. Bummer.

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    1. Well....we gotta figure out a meet-up someday ;-) I don't usually mind the heat, but it was a challenge on Saturday for the race. It keeps us all humble ;-)

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  12. Summer races aren't really "races" for me. I just run them and see what happens. Sometimes I'll try a tempo pace and use them as speedwork, but racing in the summer in Charleston is a futile effort.

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    1. I'm not much of a racer because I just don't have that in-it-to-win-it mentality, and I know the race day, often times, dictates your racing ability (weather, crowds, breakfast, hydration, etc.). I usually go with the tempo pace strategy, too, and see where that gets me.

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  13. Mmmmmhmmm hotter than Hades. Tough for running but I'm not complaining. Love that pic of you and your daughter!

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    1. I'm not complaining much either. After spending most of last summer recovering (and not running), I'll take whatever this summer hands me ;-)

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  14. Good for you on running in the heat BEFORE a race.

    I never do that. I'm too competitive to run a race on tired legs.

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    1. Well, I only ran three easy-paced miles, so my legs were feeling alright (except for the wonky hamstring). The temps just continued to climb all morning, so if I had waited, it would have really been hot.

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  15. I'm doing RNR Philly and Savannah! I'd love to meet you if you decide to do them :)!

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    1. I haven't committed to either, yet, but they are pretty much the only remaining 2018 races that may fit my schedule.

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  16. That's a great finish photo! One of my favorite pictures is from Princess, for my first half. My dad also did the race, and a Disney photographer got a picture of us in the starting corral.

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    1. That would be great to have your father there with you!

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  17. Progress is rarely linear. I'm glad you're getting to "enjoy" summer this year (even if summer isn't really quite here yet).

    I think we're gonna be lucky -- today & yesterday were hot, but then it looks like things will cool off a bit.

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    1. I have every intention of enjoying summer this year, no matter what the temps feel like ;-)

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  18. Love the photo with you and your daughter! Looks like you had a great week.

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    1. Thanks! The pic of the daughter and me totally makes me smile ;-)

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  19. I love that race photo of you and your daughter. I hope that she does more races with you in the future!

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    1. I hope she does, too. She hasn't done much (running ) since the race, but has been back in the gym working the weights (her first love).

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  20. You had a great week! And, you know I just love that photo of you and your daughter! It makes me smile to see that you're considering RnR Philly - I'm planning to be there too :)

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  21. It’s really hot here in NC this week, too! I don’t do well in the heat, so if I’m getting out there when it’s like this it has to be around sunrise.

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    1. I'm out the door most mornings my 5:30 (or earlier for my #5at5 mornings). I love the early morning atmosphere and getting the run(s) done before I start my work day.

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  22. You seriously need to offer styling services. I always love your outfits! And I hope that heat dissipates soon. It's hot here, too, but we don't have to deal with the humidity like you all do!

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    1. Iowa gets both extremes...the brutal cold of winter, and the humidity of summer. It got especially hot especially early this year (after that extended winter LOL)

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  23. Great job on that hot race! We have a trail run series in the summer that was so brutal last year they changed the name to Hot n' Hilly...describes it exactly!
    Love the pic of you and your daughter.

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    1. Hot n'Hilly sounds perfect!! Do the trails offer any shade from the sun?

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  24. Oof, that is terrible weather for a race. I would have been dumping the water on my head. I tried running fartleks with my dog once. She....quickly figured out the "rules" and also is a lot faster than me!

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  25. I do love a good race photo, and that one from Dam to Dam certainly is a great one!

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  26. What a great week, and it isn't great to visibly see the fruit of all your hard work? Congrats on always getting it done!

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  27. Yikes, your race temps were even warmer than it was here in Houston!
    I would love to run Rock n Roll Savannah one day!
    Love the race pic! So cute!

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  28. I actually really like your teal and orange combo - it looks great on you! I'm a big fan of most complimentary colors (except red and green... too Christmasy). It's been blazing hot this week too. Perfect for a recovery week post-marathon! My kids and I have been pool bums!

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