Monday, July 30, 2018

How about July!


Let me begin with a runfession of sorts....

I did not set any goals for July. What? Gasp! Shocker! What was I thinking?

I had a lot of things happening in July, and just never got around to fine-tuning any specifics on a strategy to get through the month. I know, my bad. Sometimes, though, not having stuff etched in stone can work in one's favor.


Here's how July played out:

Racing
Good grief, Charlie Brown, would you believe I had five races this month?
July race bibs
All of these races were significant...The Sully Freedom Fun Run got me a 1st place AG win (after having to DNS it last year and three prior 2nd place finishes). The Red Rock Balloon Fest 10K was a last-minute hilly endeavor that tested my mental strength. The Midnight Madness 15K brought some serious redemption...rewarding me with a 3rd place AG award, totally making up for the DNF from two years prior. And the Rock'n'Roll 5K  and Half Marathon were in the company of many wonderful blogging/running friends. Seriously, July's racing memories will be tough to beat!
July hardware
Planking
Holy Planking Plethora, Batman! I took part in Rachel's 5-Minute Planking Challenge, and my planking took on a life of its own. Granted, I have been doing daily 2:30-minute planks for several years, so the first part of the Challenge was easy peasy. The final 10 days or so, once the planking holds increased beyond those 2:30 minutes, things got serious. There was even one day when I accidentally did a 4-minute plank when it was supposed to be a 4:30-minute plank (#facepalm)...so I took one for the team and did ANOTHER plank, for the correct amount of time. All told, my planking minutes for July came in at 100...and I've got the calloused elbows to show for it.
Michelle and I even planked as a team while in Chicago for the R'n'R ReMix
HIIT'ing
A new venture for me recently has been doing weekly HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) work. Wow! I never thought I'd enjoy this stuff so much, but the adrenaline rush after a mere 30-40 minutes of serious sweating is pretty sweet! These all have been workouts I have created on my own, so they're probably not as long (or even as intense) as those you'd experience in a gym, but they have been upping my energy level, and dare I say, a few pounds have melted away in the process. All of my HIIT workouts involve push-ups, burpees, various upper body strength moves (usually as an "active rest" component), and there's usually an extended cardio segment (stair climbs, running sprints, walking lunges, etc.).  It's been a fun little step outside of my comfort zone!
Yes, you can burpee and smile about it
Running
Well, low and behold, July handed me my highest mileage month since before Voldie made his appearance (remember Voldie? The unsightly scar on my knee from that unfortunate surgery a year ago?). We're talking 98 miles here (and, no, I am not going to head out before the midnight hour and try to knockout two more miles to reach the century mark). The thing is, I was logging my miles after each run (and race), but I was not keeping an ongoing total. I didn't feel like I was forcing any "extra" miles or overdoing anything. I was just running on my usual days (with an occasional race here and there).
just running...and enjoying the gift
Now, these are just a few highlights. Trust me, there was also daily walking, lots of leg lifts, many push-ups, and weekly speedwork as well. Oh, and let's not forget that epic weekend in Chicago with #allthebloggers.

Over all, I'm giving July 2018 two ginormous thumbs up. As I have referenced in most of my posts in the past several months, I'm grateful for every run. I'm grateful for the gift of running. I'm grateful I have the choice to run...a year ago at this time, I didn't have any of that as I sat out the summer while Voldie healed.

Anyways, enough about me and my July...tell me something about yours! Mileage? Any great races? Training milestones?

**I'm linking up with Marcia and Patty and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

**I'm also linking this with Debbie and Rachel and Marc and Lora for the Running Coaches' Corner

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47 comments:

  1. Great job on your July running! Age group wins, blogger meetups, and high mileage - wow. Here's to an amazing August as well.

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  2. Glad you had such a great month! Hopefully it helps make up for everything you missed out on last summer. Great job with all those races1

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    1. Yes, July 2018, indeed, was much better than 2017 ;-)

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  3. You had an awesome July - just look at how many things you accomplished!

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  4. You definitely had a stellar July! I love not keeping a running total (ha!) of miles - that makes the final adding up process just that more fun! I've been tracking mine because I'm trying to gauge how I'm really feeling and how that relates to mileage increases but normally, I just like to run and enjoy it all.

    5 races in July?! Whoop!!! And 100 planking minutes?!?! WHOOP WHOOP!

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    1. I was totally surprised at my running miles...I was guessing I'd be around 70-75 ;-)

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  5. You deserve those thumbs up for sure! And look at all that hardware this month!

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    1. Ha, yes, the hardware is kind of sweet, especially since two of the medals are from AG placings ;-)

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  6. Wow, 98 miles. That's impressive! You've definitely rebounded and showed Voldie who's boss.

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    1. Voldie is always along for the ride, but he no longer dictates my effort ;-)

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  7. Wow, that’s a lot of races and a lot of running miles total! Sounds like it was a pretty good July :)

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    1. July played out nicely ;-) I didn't think I'd run that many miles, so that was a surprise!

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  8. Wow, 5 races in July? That is is pretty amazing!

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  9. wow you really crushed it this month! Way to go on all that planking too. Here's to a fab August!

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  10. Wow! I’m impressed with everything about your month! Great job with the mileage and the planking! I hope August is just as awesome!

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  11. Look at all that bling! I have been trying to increase my plank time. I start really struggling around 1:50, but I'm hoping to get up to 2:30 by the end of the month!

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    1. Once I got to the 2:30 mark, adding extra time (in 15-second increments) was pretty easy...you can do it!!!

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  12. Way to go! That's so awesome that you knocked out five races and got in lots of miles. Maybe just winging it a bit in July helped you break free and just kick butt!

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    1. I think winging it gave me the flexibility to have fun, and that motivated me to do more because I was choosing to, not because I HAD to ;-)

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  13. It sounds like all FIVE of your races went great! I did a HIIT style workout for the first time in a while yesterday, and afterwards my legs felt like I had spent a couple hours trail running.

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    1. The week I did all those squats and lunges in my HIIT...oh my! That took a few days to recover from LOL

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  14. Another busy yet productive month as usual. You inspire me with all you do.

    I usually race a lot but only ONE this month. Things will pick up in the fall.

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    1. I was surprised to see you only had one race....you're usually racing every weekend ;-)

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  15. Congrats on your busy + amazing month! 5 races=awesome! I ran the RnR Chicago in 2012 and would love to do it again one day.

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    1. Chicago is definitely a scenic city to run a race!

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  16. What a great month! Congrats on making it through the plank challenge and on that mileage!

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    1. I don't typically do that many "long"planks on so many consecutive days, so that was a big comfort zone violation

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  17. What a great month! And to think--much of it was done through the awful heat and humidity we all seemed to experience. Good job!

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  18. Way to go on all your accomplishments even though you didn't set forth specific goals!
    And awesome comeback on your DNS race from last year!
    Hope you have an awesome fitness filled August :)

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    1. I'm excited for August, although I don't have any races on the roster...yet...

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  19. Who needs goals when you can spank a month the way you did July? Awesomeness all around!

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    1. Thanks, Marcia ;-) It feels good to finally have a great month ;-)

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  20. Whoa, you crushed it! I can't imagine holding a plank for that long! And 5 races in one month? You go, girl!

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  21. Wow you had a fantastic month!! Great job! I’ve been doing HIIT workouts too and loving it!

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  22. Sounds like a pretty darn good month to me! Good job with the 98 miles!

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  23. Wow, sounds like another great month for you! Loving all that bling too :-)

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha...the bling is like the coveted cherry on top, right?

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  24. July was a "down" month for me, mileage wise. The heat and injuries, but it felt good to run through it and not use it as excuse not to
    The worst downside of fall is no forearm planks, and I was so loving the challenge until then. Look forward to starting it again in September

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