Month: April 2016 (page 1 of 2)

A good run and smiley pancakes

My core work and strength training is paying off! I had a really good run today!


Yesterday I thought about doing 5 miles but today felt more like a 3 mile day.  This is the kind of pace I hope to have for my half marathon! I would be thrilled if I run my half at an 8:30/9 min pace, especially since it’s my first.

I love finding a drinking fountain and bathroom on the running trail. I stopped 3 times for water today. It’s amazing how powerful you feel when you’re not thirsty.

Gotta love the little memo on the water fountain here in Seattle. You won’t find this in California!

freezer proof

I will do 5 miles on Sunday instead. Tomorrow will be a core/strength hill climbing day.

Yesterday I went down to the marina for some delicious seafood (clam chowder, and a cod taco) as everyone gathered and the navy sang them goodbye. They are off, with the race resuming today.


A couple hours later I went walking and saw them from far away.

race aroudn the world

Yesterday I went out to breakfast at this diner I’ve been going to a lot this trip. I always smile and wave to those working in the kitchen. I ordered my pancakes and this is what I got:

happy pancake

This really warmed my heart. If I have made someone smile, I feel like I’ve done my job!

My pre-run rituals

Before I go running, I always follow these steps.

Before we begin, step 1. includes eating. I never run without food in my stomach. I have before but I am not strong enough without fuel. Today I had eggs, cheese, and potatoes. I used red potatoes.

This is how I make breakfast potatoes:

  1. Wash them and cut them into fourths.
  2. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Cook them in a little butter for about 20-30 mins, until they are nice and brown.
  4. Towards the end I add rosemary and garlic.

I always have two cups of coffee in the morning too, and drink water. About an hour or 2 after eating, I am ready to run.

Before I head out, I stretch my hip flexor. This is really good stretch, and works better for me than pigeon, which I do after my run. Keep your knee at 90 degrees, and keep your other leg straight. Be careful not to arch your back. You will feel a good stretch on the front on your hip flexor. I feel it to about mid-thigh when I’m super tight. Hold this for about 30 seconds.

hip flexor

Next, I activate my glutes with some squats without weights, and fire hydrants. I should be wearing a band tied around my knees but I don’t have one with me. It’s still hard without the band!

fire hydrant

You can also do this standing with hands on the couch, table, anything really.

Forward fold. My hamstrings are TIGHT… so I try to warm up slowly.

forward fold

I like to do a few sun salutations to warm up my core and breathe before heading out.

I’m reading Aim True right now, by Kathryn Budig, and I highly recommend it. You can learn a lot about yoga from her.

It’s about .7 of a mile to the trail where I’ve been running, so that’s a pretty nice warmup as well.

How do you warm up for a run?


First attempt at walking 13.1 miles

Today I had plans to walk 13 miles, but it wasn’t going to happen. I was way too cold. I walked over the Fremont Bridge and into Fremont. Shipping lane ^

Gasworks park:


It was much warmer where I started out, so I wore shorts. With all the hills it sometimes is tough to predict how warm you’ll be when you’re moving around. While walking uphill I felt sweat pouring down my back, but Fremont is on Lake Union, and I felt very cold air on my legs the whole time, so I turned around after about 4 miles and walked a total of 6.5 miles.

I walked past the Brooks HQ! My pure cadences must have been pretty happy to be near the mother ship!

brooks hq


I really like the shoes in the crosswalk in front of brooks!!!


View of the city from the top of Gas works park:


The sunshine is deceiving! I was freezing cold!

I had been wanting to try a doughnut for a few days. A few days ago I had a mini doughnut in Pike’s market that was so-so, and I had heard of Top Pot.

Stopping at Top Pot for a doughnut on the way back made the freezing cold walk worth it! This was one of the best doughnuts I’ve ever had. At first the maple icing got me with its buttery decadence, but then I realized I liked the cake equally as much. It was not over mixed at all and tasted really fresh, not greasy.


I will be back. And, I’ll go back to Fremont–in pants.

  • How is your Monday going?
  • What’s your favorite doughnut?

Quick core workouts!!!

I’ve been loving my walks/runs alongside the water.

water run

Yesterday  I saw the clipper around the world boats, then went to Pike’s market and walked back.

race around

My hip flexor felt a little tired and I know I needed to rest it, but I mostly need to work on strength training.  I need to work on my strength to become a better runner! A strong core will help stabilize my hip drop. I’m still away from home so I don’t have access to my weights or workout equipment.. and it’s really raining today so it’s the perfect day to stay in and get stronger.

So with my hip flexor needing rest, I was in search of some core workouts I can do at home. Everything on Comcast required a subscription, so I went on youtube and discovered Pop sugar fitness.

I did these two videos, and they kicked my abs!!!

Ten minute abs without crunches

Ten minute barre workout

The first was much easier than the second, and I will definitely do these videos again. I really like how the first video had a nice warmup; it was the perfect intro into the second. Both videos were only 10 minutes, and they move fast so I didn’t get bored. I am also thinking of trying a barre class now. Some of the moves reminded me of pilates, which I haven’t been practicing in a long time. My hamstrings are super tight and I can’t always keep my legs straight.

barre core

Like running, a lot of working out is mental. When I know I’m only doing something for 10 minutes I really try hard and give it all I’ve got.. or all I want to have (core strength). A ten minute video doesn’t make you feel like you must “conserve” at all. That’s how I practice my speed workouts too. I just go out for a 2 mile run. When I know I’m only running for 15 minutes I really try my best. It’s hard for me to think 6 miles of speed, but 2 miles.. hey I can do that. I also need to work on my elbow planks (3 for one minute each), but I will do that in a few hours when my abs feel somewhat rested! Maybe I’ll do some elbow side planks too. For some reason I get super lazy when doing planks if I can’t watch the clock. When I don’t watch the clock I want to quit after 10 seconds because it feels like hours. It’s like time stands still doing planks. These videos went by really fast, and were very upbeat, and constantly changing the workout really helped keep me interested.

  • How do you strengthen your core?
  • Which exercises are your favorite?
  • How can I pass the time while doing planks?


City fitness

I found Republican street, but Trump was nowhere to be found?!

Still in Seattle and I’m getting in great shape. Just walking up these hills to get breakfast, walking down and uphill to and from my runs by the water, and all the walking I’m doing in the city, I can feel my legs shaping up. It’s been really easy for me to get my fitbit steps in too.

Running is going really well. Yesterday I ran 3 miles again, and now that I’ve done so much exploring on foot, I know the area pretty well.


I was glad that after a few months, I finally had a run that mapmyrun said I was in the top 10%. I’m considering doing a 5k this weekend. I haven’t signed up yet, but I might. It’s going to rain this weekend. My last 5k was during a downpour and I did PR. After that run, weather has not phased me. It kind of broke me, and I no longer care about weather and running in rain.

The weather has been great, the complete opposite of my last trip. Last time it was raining and cold. Today it’s going to rain after noon, so I want to be back inside before then. I might even cook tonight. Maybe. That would require planning a menu, and I don’t have a lot of time on my hands.

Last night I checked out Mike’s Chili Tavern in Ballard. I am a chili fanatic… so I really wanted to try it. I was excited to see a picture of Guy on the wall.


This wasn’t the best chili I’ve ever had, but I’m glad I tried a new place. I had also never been to Ballard, and it was like a parking lot and industrial area for boats.

  • Do you live in a city?
  • Does it make you more active? Do you walk your errands?

Monday I had a very early flight to San Diego and was running late. It took longer to get an uber than I expected at that early hour. My flight was delayed by 10 mins, which gave me just enough to help me get through security. I had just enough time to spare, but not enough time to wait in those long lines at the airport for coffee and something quick, let’s say a bagel for example.

I had some coffee at home while getting ready as usual. I’m much more sharp after some coffee, even though I am a morning person and don’t need it. I could forget something if I’m moving slow, but luckily I didn’t forget a thing.

So, I got on the plane alright and got some coffee and water, and peanuts. I ate the peanuts and drank the coffee. I felt great. I made it to San Diego with barely enough time to get to my connection. I had to go through security again. I love San Diego. Even though I didn’t get to leave the airport, I love looking around and seeing the water, boats, and hills.

Once on the plane, I ordered the same thing–coffee and water. The cups are so small on the plane I’m not sure they count. I ate another package of peanuts. I was plowing through Born to Run. I’m a really fast reader, maybe because I was an English major and have done so much reading? After those peanuts I felt mentally more aware and focused. I bought the book Grain Brain but haven’t read it yet. After eating the peanuts I felt completely different than how I usually feel in the morning. Often times I crash with carbs in the morning. I try to stick to as much fat and protein as possible, but this really affirmed how I need to eat for my body.

After the package of peanuts I knew I needed a little more food and remembered I had a curate bar. I had one of those and didn’t eat again until after I landed in Seattle and got lunch. I didn’t feel my blood sugar spike and crash. I felt healthy all day. So, I’m taking this fat in the morning seriously.

Yesterday before my run, I had a handful of peanuts. I am now starting every day with peanuts. I want my brain and stomach to expect fat in the morning. How is it that I like peanuts but don’t like peanut butter?

I was reading in Born to Run that humans are very good are running slow and burning fat. I want to be less dependent on carbs and don’t want to need to cater to my body’s demands for certain foods. I feel so much better eating this way I haven’t even missed english muffins and toast with eggs/avocado. I will try to eat eggs without bread. Yesterday I had huevos rancheros. It was served on black bean chili with corn tortillas. YUM!

But, don’t think I’m taking this health kick too far. I plan to try a doughnut while I’m here. I hear there are some real good doughnut places here.

Suggestions for doughnut shops in Seattle?

Running in Seattle

I’m up in Seattle enjoying some AWESOME weather. I went running down by the waterfront today. I ran from downtown Seattle along the water to Seattle Naval Supply Center. I was so happy I passed a drinking fountain on my way there. I’m working on picking up the pace a bit. Lately I got so comfortable running 10 minute miles while building up endurance, but it’s time I get “comfy” with 8/8:30 paces.

The snow capped mountains are my favorite thing about Seattle. I’m not much of a city slicker, and I much prefer nature. You can see mountains wherever, even when you’re in the city.

I used mapmyrun to run a 5k, but then ran another mile and walked up a huge hill. I have to record so I know how fast I’m going.


I ran in my new pegasus today!


They were so springy! The spring of new shoes always surprises me. I really don’t know how shoes can last a year. I live in my shoes. I always say it’s better to buy more shoes than gas, if you drive around a lot. I try to walk everywhere I can.

Yesterday on the plane I was reading Born to Run and I finally finished it. This book is really motivating. I never knew that we humans are born to run, and never would have guessed we could outrun horses. McDougall is an excellent writer. I can’t wait to read his other book. I especially like the part where he talks about how he always had an Irish hot temper, but with running his wife offered to tie his shoes for him. Running does wonders for my high energy temperament. I am so calm and focused after a good run.

I went to Lake Washington yesterday. Man it was hot!


A good reminder to me:


Sometimes I feel like a spinster, so I like to remind myself of the good things in my life, and how well I am doing at this age. I’m 27, and I’m way healthier than I was at 17. I could barely run a mile at a 17, had 10 lbs to lose, and didn’t eat well. Age matters a lot less than you may think! 27 is the year I am crushing my goals!

Later tonight I am going to do this video from Hungry Runner Girl.

I’m glad Janae provided a strength video that doesn’t include weights–I don’t have access to any here in Seattle. I need to keep my strength training up. I love running so much, and I would prefer to just run, but I gotta be strong and stay injury-free!

  • How is your Tuesday going?
  • What are your favorite running shoes?

Weekend in SF

I’m so glad my friend lives in the most beautiful city!!

I got some running in, and a lot of walking.


And some yoga in the park.

yoga bridge

Tomorrow we will work on a more concrete half marathon training plan.


How was your weekend?

How many miles will you run this week? Elle and I thinking of running 3 times, with some other workouts mixed in.

Controlling hip drop when running

So far, so good. I have stuck with my plans thus far. Yesterday I ran 3.43 miles around a 10 min mile pace and today I worked out at physical therapy.  My knee feels great! I’m so happy it’s getting so strong. Two healthy knees have helped me realize my dreams are possible.


Today I ran on the treadmill with censors that measure force. My PT said that my knee flexion was perfect. I am working on running really softly too. The only thing I need to work on, besides mild pronation, and of course.. breathing, is controlling hip drop. It was fun watching the treadmill force as I was running, but also pretty cool when I looked at the skeletal view. When I was really trying to keep my hip up you can see it.

Why hip drop?

Well, weak hip and glutes muscles are not going to hold your hip up like they should. So while one foot is on the ground in the single-legged squat part of the run, if it’s weak, your pelvis will not be able to hold up the other hip that is pushing off. With my knee injury, I had to get stronger before I could work on this. But, my knee pain always came over time. Weak muscles could hold my knee together for awhile, but over time my other muscles had to compensate.

So, I need to keep up my strength training of course. Strengthening is a must. After my run on the treadmill I did box squats jumps, and single-legged squats with a 15 lb weight.

How do you strengthen your hips and glutes?

Workout plan for the week

Let’s see how this week pans out! I hope I follow my plan, but I wouldn’t be that surprised if I don’t. I definitely want to get more runs in this week though. Last week I was very active but I didn’t run as much as I wanted. I love being physically tired. Yesterday I had enough energy for a long run, but didn’t have time.

Monday: Today I plan to run. Even when I am working out it’s not the same as hitting the trail. Today I plan to run about 3 miles. I also plan to do some planks.

Tuesday: Tomorrow I have a workout planned with Kevin. We have planned to go on the treadmill and see how my form has improved. I don’t know how long we will do this, but I think we will likely do some gym work after. 30 mins on the treadmill and 30 mins in the gym is a good guess. That workout would likely consist of box jumps, single-legged squats, squats, fire hydrants. All things that target your glutes and hips. I am excited to get on the treadmill tomorrow and see if my pelvic drop has improved.

Wednesday: I predict I’ll be kicked off my feet. I am usually tired after working out with Kevin. I plan to take Wednesday as a day of rest.

Thursday: Hike. Thursday will be a good day for a hike on some hills, single-legged squats with a 10 lb weight, planks. So, some non-running cardio and cross training.

Friday: Run!! Run and only run, and stretch of course!

Saturday: Hike and cross-train

Sunday: Probably another hike or maybe my long walk. I still want to walk 13.1 miles!

What’s on your workout calendar this week?

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