Change is good.
There is nothing more crippling than to be caught in a stagnant state of existence. Same rituals, nothing new, zero challenges, no ventures outside of that comfort zone...none of these encourage growth or adventure.
Thankfully, that was not the case this past week. Not only was the weather in a flux of disarray, but so was my routine. And, it was all good.
Before we hash out the details, welcome to the Weekly Run Down!
I love hosting 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 ;-)
Monday - Change of Venue
I enjoy my hilly 'hood, especially for short runs. Honestly, there's no shortage of possibilities in terms of hills, so even a short 1-2 mile jaunt is a substantial workout. That said, sometimes I just gotta break away...so, I drove the half-mile to the central campus of the college and ran two laps around the 1-mile perimeter. I had sidewalks (and lamp posts every 20 feet), and it was a nice change of venue. Two miles over and done for #nevermissaMonday, check!
As per usual, I try to keep Tuesdays low-key. No heavy strength-training, zero grandiose miles. That doesn't mean I can't sweat a little, though. I started the day with 30 minutes on the elliptical for breakfast. Since the forecast promised a beautiful day (and I had a big holiday luncheon over the noon hour), I saved my 1-mile streak run for after work. Smartest move ever... that impending sunset was total perfection!
Wednesday - Change in Layers
Even though I tend to whine about the cold weather, it is rather pleasant for running (on occasion). What's scary (in a good way) is that I think I've already acclimated to the sub-freezing temps. I took a chance and wore two fleece-lined layers (with arm warmers in between), and didn't feel the least bit chilled (except for my face when the headwind was a factor). Five miles for #5at5 with Barb, in the o'dark thirty hours, and my day was complete before it had even started.
I'm a pretty spontaneous person, but I write up my HIIT workouts before lights-out the evening prior (instead of just winging them). When I woke up on Thursday morning, though, my body said, "Nope, I don't think so." I didn't feel sick or overly tired, but I just wasn't feeling like HIIT'ing it hard. Well, when the body speaks, I try to listen. I spent a good 20 minutes doing some deep stretching and yoga instead. It's alright to stray from the plan if your body (and/or mind) needs a little downtime. Besides, the forecast was showing a glorious day on tap...so I had already planned on doing my streak run over lunch. The sunshine was so amazing, I kind of ran an extra mile than what I'd intended. Two miles, with all kinds of smiles, then back to the office I went.
Friday - A Change in Perspective
Since I'd skipped the HIIT on Thursday, I decided to do it on Friday morning instead. And, since I'd run farther on Thursday's streak run than I'd originally planned, I thought it best to keep Friday's run short. I usually do a brief warm-up before my runs, but decided to incorporate the HIIT workout as my warm-up, then do the 1-mile streak run afterwards (you know, kind of cryotherapy of sorts in the cold early morning temps).
***Two sets of this core-focused HIIT workout***
*5 flights of stairs (double-stepped)
*25 jumping jacks
*20 arm reps (15-lb. weights)
*1-minute side arm plank (on elbow)
*10 burpees (with added plank jack)
*20 arm reps (15-lb. weights)
*1-minute side arm plank (other elbow)
About 10 days ago, I noticed a nearby 5K race, the Jingle for a Cure (in Newton, IA; about a 20-minute drive). With no other holiday-themed races on my radar, I decided to do onsite registration if the weather was nice. The forecast had been showing temps in the mid-40F's (all week) with sunshine, so I decided to go for it. By Friday evening, though, the sunshine was still showing in the forecast, but the morning temps were looking a little colder. I added an extra fleece-lined layer (instead of just one) as well as full tights (instead of going bare-legged). The hubby came along, dropped me off at the race site, then headed to a nearby coffee shop. I did a brief half-mile warm-up (and some dynamic stretches), ran a strong 5K (26:10), and then, afterwards, ran the approximate half-mile to the coffee shop as a cool-down. Oh, and I finished first overall female! Even though the field wasn't too competitive, nor was it a very large event, my finish time was one of my faster 5K's, so I'm very happy with how the morning played out.
Saturday evening, while watching the exciting Big 10 Championship football game, I felt so exhausted, and my back was feeling cranky. I even slept-in on Sunday (not waking up until after 7:00, which is really late for this early-riser). But, Oh My Aching Back!!! I'm not sure what's up with my (lower) back, but #ouch. Instead of my usual 2-mile recovery run routine, I ran just one mile before church, and felt SO much better. I was tempted to keep going, but thought it best to head home. I took Max for a short walk, and felt even better after that. My hamstrings are feeling a bit tight, probably a result of Saturday's race...maybe I ran that race harder than I realized (duh!). A friend suggested the hamstrings may be pulling on my back...so it all makes sense. It's nothing chronic, but definitely a sign to take things easy today. Onward!
In case you missed out, here's what went down on the blog:
The Streak is ON!
Coffee & Convo
In other news:
Friday Fashion Flair! I've said it many times before...as much as I love color, I've always been drawn to the classic color combo of black and white. Seriously, it goes with every color! I found these cute houndstooth leggings on Black Friday at Old Navy, and they are so comfy. The burgundy high/low sweater works well with them because it covers everything it needs to, and it's a great seasonal color. As always, you're invited to join the party...post a pic on Instagram, grab the hashtag (#FridayFashionFlair) and be sure to tag me (@runningonthefly). It's fun seeing our fitness friends in "real" clothing, right?
Finally, most of my Black Friday and Cyber Monday fitness finds have arrived! I got the black retro-striped capris at Old Navy. Notice there's two pairs of running shoes? The Brooks Adrenalines GTS 19's (dark teal, on the left) and the Mizuno Wave Inspire 15's (light turquoise with black) have both been christened, and both are keepers. SmartWool socks are my absolute favorites, hands down. I also found a hat with a built-in LED light that will get used a lot on my early-morning adventures. I'm eager to try the Koala Clip (for carrying my phone) because I detest wearing a belt, especially for just my shorter runs.
So, that's the latest! It was a nice, mild week in terms of weather, but it's looking like we'll be reverting back to our regularly scheduled winter weather this week. Oh well, this IS Iowa and it's supposed to be cold.
How was your week? Any Black Friday/Cyber Monday finds that you've already been enjoying? Do you have any of the goods pictured above? Any holiday races on tap?
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