Sunday, May 02, 2010
Yesterday morning was a group run with some people from my gym. We did the entire 5K course in town - I am feeling good about the race on the 16th! The weather was beautiful, and the sun was out, the birds were chirping, people were friendly... My running buddy and I did our usual Saturday morning post-run breakfast (cinnamon buttermilk and carrot pineapple pancakes - yum!). It's a fun little thing that gets us motivated to run on a Saturday morning.
Since yesterday was a lovely day, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to take my bike out to a local trail and get some riding miles in. About 30 minutes away from my house is a rails-to-trails trail along a river. It is beautiful!
The trail is like this the whole route - very flat and wide.
So I set off yesterday around noon - sunscreen on (I did a pretty good job - I only missed one spot on my forearm), water and granola bars in tow, camera ready... there were lots of people out yesterday. And they were all friendly! Within the first hour, I took some pictures, did some quicker sections of trail, and told myself what a great idea this was. There were tons of people rafting and kayaking on the water - it looked like so much fun.
Stopped about an hour and a half in to have a granola bar and some water. Picnic tables are set up all along the trail - they thought of everything!
At this point, I was feeling good (and maybe a little delirious from the nice weather) so I decided to go to the south trail head (which was 21 miles away from the north one).
*Before you read on - *yes*, I did think "I have to come back."
So off I went. Looking at the birds (I saw two huge turkeys), the trees, the railroad, the water... It took me about 2.5 hours to get down to the south point. Nothing was hurting - knees felt fine, rear end felt fine, legs felt good... so I turned around to head back.
About 1.5 hours in on the way back, I thought "wow, my legs are starting to feel this. My rear end is getting a little sore." But it was all still manageable.
I didn't know that quads and rear soreness got worse exponentially! So long story short, it took me a little over three hours to get back. I stopped A LOT to rest my rear and stretch my legs. There were some little waterfalls along the trail, so I filled up my water bottle a few times on the way back and dipped my helmet into the waterfall. I was no longer taking pictures, I was just hoping I'd make it back before the sun went down.
Last night was not a good night of sleeping. I woke up a lot because my legs hurt so much. I stretched a lot last night, but I just went crazy yesterday and should have taken some Motrin before bed. This morning I could barely stand up in the shower - quads are KILLING me. My rear, however, is just fine.
So was my 42 mile trip worth it?
I was able to do it! 42 miles is a LONG trip.
The day was beautiful.
When I got in my car, I was so proud of myself for going so far.
I did a good job applying sunscreen, and even took extra along so I could reapply.
The water from the waterfalls was the best tasting water ever.
Bikers are friendly people.
I saw lots of dogs.
The Bad (or, Lessons Learned):
Two granola bars were not enough for my long trip.
I didn't bother to figure out how long it would take me - luckily, I had the whole day free.
My water bottle didn't keep my water very cold.
A more comfortable backpack would have been nice.
Maybe 42 miles wasn't the best choice for one of my first rides.
non-padded shorts + 42 miles of trail = a sore Carrie
not conditioning myself properly + 42 miles of trail = very angry quads
So *was* it worth it?
YES! My pain will subside; I took Motrin this morning (and I hardly *ever* take painkillers), put some ice on my legs (and will continue to ice them all throughout the day), and am making this a well-deserved Rest Day. Now that I know how long it takes, I can plan better and be prepared. Also, I will have some killer legs if I keep this up.
This afternoon honey and I are going to a pot luck to meet the other people in our veggie cooperative. Don't know what we're taking yet, but honey is good at that kind of thing. Today's goals are few and easy... I need an easy day!
Today I will:
Drink a ton of water
Ice and stretch my legs a bunch
Pack lunch for tomorrow
Get clothes ready for the week
Clean up the downstairs
Have a super day!
Saturday, May 01, 2010
I love love love May. It means that school is in the homestretch, consistent warm weather is upon us, and I can plant flowers outside without fear of the frost getting to them. Yahoo!
Yesterday's goals for the last day of April were simple. I was going biking after school, so I purposely made them very do-able. Since the rest of April was pretty much a bust, I thought "well I might as well make the last day count."
Water? Yes yes and yes.
May goals? Yes! (those come at the end)
Stay awake at the meeting? By some miracle, yes, I stayed awake. But I still can't stand having my time wasted.
Yesterday I packed up the bike and went to a lovely park after school for a wonderful 45 minute trail ride. I was able to do some parts on the trail yesterday that I couldn't do on Tuesday. Yippee! I am slowly working on my riding confidence, but I am sure that will come with more experience. When I entered it into Spark, it read that I burned over 400 calories from just 45 minutes of mountain biking! Wow! I'm not *too* surprised - my legs are definitely feeling it today.
At 7:00 I am meeting a group from the gym to go running. We're training for the local 5K coming up in about two weeks. It's a nice flat course through town; I would love to beat my time from last year!
The triathlon challenge at my gym is over tomorrow, and I still need to get some biking miles in. So this afternoon I'm packing up the bike again and heading out to a Rails-to-Trails park. The whole trail is about 20 miles each way - don't know if I'm going to do the whole thing, but who knows - the weather is supposed to be beautiful, and with no papers to write, I have the day to do pretty much whatever I want! I've heard from some people at my gym that the trail is just wonderful. Only about a 1-2% grade, wide and gravel-y, and runs totally along a river. My ride might turn out to be a leisurely one with some camera action. I'm really looking forward to it!
I spent a lot of time thinking about my May goals and challenges. I have two big goals that I'd like to meet by the end of May.
1) Fit into a really pretty size 4 skirt I have (I bought it as motivation - I'm almost there!)
2) Do 16 full push-ups in a row (they are no longer "man" push-ups to me - I think since I can do 12 in a row right now they're not just for men!)
I also have some weekly must-dos. I decided not to call them goals, because I'm not working toward them, I'm just going to DO them.
1) Limit 3 sweet treats a week (sweet treats are things like cookies, pie, and other "fun" desserts. This does not include baked apples.)
2) Track calories to stay in range 5 of 7 days (This is going to help keep my packed lunches in check. Sometimes I go a little crazy. While I don't pack anything junky, my lunches sometimes get over 700 calories. yikes!)
3) Run 3x a week. Bike 2x a week. Strength train 2x a week. Swim 2x a week. (I plan on getting the swimming part in before school. I love going for an early morning 20 minute swim. Really wakes me up!)
So there they are. May goals. I decided I'm not going to make a fancy poster this month. Instead, I'm going to make about 8743784902 copies of my goals and put them up EVERYWHERE. I might even post pictures of my skirt everywhere. I need to be reminded of my goals when I reach in my wallet to buy a biscotti at the coffee shop. I need to be reminded of my goals when I go out for dinner with my friends. I need to be reminded of my goals at the end of the week when all I want to do is crash on the couch with a bottle of wine and a pint of ice cream. These are the times when I need the reminders; not so much when I am getting ready for school in the morning.
My rewards are simple, but that's really all I need.
Weekly reward - fresh flowers
Monthly reward - massage and/or a really beautiful dress I've been eying up. I have a summer wedding to go to in August, and I'd love to have this dress for the wedding. And speaking of the dress, I need some thoughts. I have a 20% of coupon for J.Crew (where I found the dress), and it expires on May 9th. Is it really horrible to buy the dress now with my coupon and then keep the tags on until the end of May when (notice I said *when*, not *if*) I meet my goals? Ha! I must sound so cheap...
I hope your May Day is super!
Friday, April 30, 2010
Yesterday was measurement day. I knew it wasn't going to be pretty. In April I ate too much Chinese food, too much candy, too much ice cream, and drank too much wine. I gained one pound, and the only measurement that changed was my biceps. I'm actually not *that* bummed out; the one area where I really worked hard (my arms) got smaller. And I'm very happy that I didn't gain more than one pound - I totally turned into a stress eater in April, and boy, was there a lot of stress.
I don't think I looked at my April goals once this month. Ok, maybe one time, where I thought "I am never going to make April goals." Tonight is going to be some serious May thinking. I need some concrete fitness goals - maybe along the lines of minutes biking, miles run, time on strength training... Some concrete nutrition goals, maybe like no more than three sweets per week, no vending machine at work, keep lunch under 500 calories...
After school I am going mountain biking. The weather is going to be nice, so I'll be able to spend some quality time out there on my bike. This time I'm going to look at the map before I go. When I come home, it's time to get to work on May goals and map out a plan with my calendar.
Today I will:
Drink lots and lots of water
Get May goals in place
Do my best to stay awake during our department meeting this morning (ugh)
Thursday, April 29, 2010
I have to admit I'm a little nervous about today. It's been six weeks since my last weigh-in, body fat% test and measurements with the trainer... I'm not totally sure they are going to move too far in my favor. But we'll see.
Woke up at 4:30 (yikes!), had some coffee and some breakfast - if I do not eat a good breakfast before I visit the trainer, I feel totally faint.
I'm really looking forward to today's workout. Within the last week I've been noticing some good changes in my body. My triceps are more defined (I spotted a muscle shadow in the mirror yesterday) and I'm starting to get a little definition in my legs. This totally inspires me to keep running and mountain biking. There is nothing like the burn in your quads when you're pedaling up a gravel-y, rocky path in the woods.
I packed my lunch very carefully last night. I like to take lots of different things for my lunch, but I was discovering that this made my lunches a bit high in calories. Sometimes way over half my day's calories were being eaten in lunch! So last night when i packed my lunch, I made a conscious effort to measure everything and make it in smaller portions. Half a cup of spaghetti, half a cup of Greek yogurt, no cheese or walnuts on my salad (I don't miss them when they're not there)... and my lunch checks in at under 500 calories. This is super news!
Decided not to take the bike out tonight; I'm getting a good workout in this morning, and I think it's going to be quite windy this afternoon. Tomorrow is supposed to be MUCH nicer - in the low 80s - so I'll wait until then to go back to the trail. I can't wait!!!
Off to get ready for the gym... have a super day!
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