Monday, August 5, 2013

Monday Madness- The Spartan Inspired Workout

Spartan Workout

2 lanes drags- feet gliders
10 push-ups
2 lanes drags- Hand gliders
10 jumping lunges
2 lanes drags- Feet gliders
10 Heavy Arnolds
2 lane drags- Hand Gliders
10 burpees

10 weight squats
4 lane heavy weight walks
30 plank triceps

10-20 Burpees
10-20 Air squats
2 minutes jump ropes
10-20 Lunges
20-30 crunches
20 Chattaranga Knees

20 Jumping Jacks
20 Frankenstein Kicks
20 Lunges
30 Burpees
30 Mountain Climbers
30 Bicycle kicks
1minute plank

Monday, July 29, 2013

City of Cypress 32nd Annual 5K & 10K Run/Walk July 27th, 2013

            I had registered for this event for a few reasons: 1) I needed to started getting use to races again.
2) I needed to get use to running in the SUMMER race times again (meaning after 8am) 3) I needed a race to set my pace for the Tinkerbell 1/2 in 2014. This is one race that is fairly close to me and offers that community feel, a great price ($25.00) and a neat post race ambiance.
        I picked up my registration the day before so that I knew where I was going and to avoid the rush/stress in the morning to get there early just to pick up my stuff. The registration procedures were very easy. The line outside was daunting at first, but it moved fairly quickly. Once inside, you looked up your bid number, make a line in the section holding your bid number. Pick up your pins and zip ties for your chip while the volunteer looked up your bid and voila... done. You stepped over to another table to pick up your t-shirt and bag and off you went. The whole process took about 20 minutes, if that. I am glad that I went to the day before because I was able to orient myself and know where I was to park and all that jazz.
My Outfit

          For me this race was also a celebration to my national heritage- PERU. The 28th of July is the National Independence day and since I wasn't running on the day I felt I wanted to represent my country and had very carefully planned my outfit. My T-Shirt was  red and white (a Peruvian shirt), my Sparkle Skirt was red, my ProCompression Socks were white, hat was white and my sports bra was red (yes, so were the undies...pervs). ;)  I did not forget to represent the USA of course. It's small, but on the right of the shirt is a pin with the Peruvian and American flag. Only in a few other countries could you participate in such an event and not be harassed for supporting another country. Thanks "Merica! Finally, I sported my Brooks on their final race, they retired the next day (more on that in another blog). I was ready!

        I woke up early with a plan. I foam rolled my calves out first, ate a banana (breakfast of champions) , walked my dog for about 30 minutes, foam rolled again, and left, LATE. I wasn't really late but I did want to arrive about 30 minutes before the race and I ended up getting out of the car about 20 minutes prior and I had a good 1/4 mile walk to the starting line. I took it as a warm up, did some hamstring warmup, lateral moves, some light stretching and I walked to crowd of people with 3 minutes to go.

           And here we were...waiting. By this time, I started getting the jitters. I hadn't raced since Peru and even that I hadn't put any pressure on myself. This...This was to set my pace and Corral for Disney's Tinkerbell 1/2 in January. I was getting nervous. So nervous that I was fumbling trying to get my RunKeeper on for the race and getting my playlist in the right section. The buzzer went off but and we approached the line, slowly. I had forgotten that in crowded events like this, it takes a good few minutes to get across the starting line, and even afterwards you are swerving in and out of people trying to get into your groove. THAT was super challenging. Folks, if you are running/walking please please, stick to the right, please don't suddenly start to walk especially, in the first mile, without looking behind you. And if you want to walk/run with friends please don't make a line 5-6 people across others behind you may want to get by. I think I augmented about 1/2 a mile swerving in and around people as we all were just trying to find our groove... the grooooove.

    I focused on kinder things, like puppies and rainbows. There were some great local supporters who came out of their homes to support us on. I would like to say THANKS! Thank you to those who had such great comments, signs, noises, and to the guy you had the homemade mister to help us run as we looped twice around your house THANKS! I know that water isn't getting any cheaper, but sir, knowing that your house was just around the corner helped me pick up my pace for mile 4, and for that I thank you.

      The clouds covered the Sun momentarily to help give that final push from 5-6.2 miles.  Clock said 57:06....officially time was......55:36! A NEW 10K PR!!!!

      I was very content for about oh... 10 seconds, and then I kept thinking, what if I had pushed just a little harder. Those stupid what ifs. NEVERMIND THOSE!!! ENJOY IT!!!! And I did.

    I went back to the finish line to cheer on others that were coming in. I just get the warm fuzzies seeing people come in with this expression of astonishment, pride and satisfaction. Some give it that last sprint to the end while other coast to enjoy the moment- each - beautiful and personal as is each runner. This gentleman at 80 years old crossed and I lost it- it was just super humbling and I'm such a goober. Afterwards, I spent some time at the Festival sniffing the chili (which was maddening) and looking through the knick knacks. Then I set in the for the short ride home.

Would I do it again:
Heck YA! And I would bring more cash with me to buy stuff that I really don't even need. I would also drag my husband and enjoy the chili. We both had evening events so I was really limited on time :/

       Congrats to all those walkers and runners out there! As for me, I had a special little fella waiting to congratulate me at home. Oh and my husband was waiting there for me too. :)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Madness Mondays

Are you ready? This is  what I call the THREE MINUTE CIRCUIT.

Each station, is strong and steady 30 seconds to go to the next. If you don't have some of the items listed don't fret. What muscle group is it engaging? Example- TRX Pull-ups? = Tricep pushups-> your elbows scrape the side of your body, hands under your shoulders.

Don't have a heavy bar, Grab a couple of books (make sure you have a good grip!)

1) Mat, TRX
2) Mat, Heavy/Med Weights
3) Riser (box-something to climb up on, stairs works) Heavy Bar
4) Little ball (basketball), Resistance Band, Mat
5) Mat
6) Foam roller (chair works fine), Heavy plate (or a book)


Round One:
1) TRX all body over with squat
2) women ups
3) Walk ups with Heavy Bar
4) Lunge w/ overhead band, switch 1.30min
5) Walk out push up walk in
6) Kick over rollers

ALL BURPEES 1 minutes- 30 sec water break

Round Two:
1) Pull up , Low or high
2) Squat, to bicep, overhead
3) push up to opp. Foot/hand
4) Little squat with band kick back
5) Push up, hand to opp. Foot, push hand to opp. Foot, jump up
6) Squat and over head lifts

ALL Mtn. Climbers – 30 sec break


Pictures up tomorrow from class :)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

WE are We are V.R... Virtual Racing that is

** And Brownie points for anyone who started singing the actual full theme song to which I am referring to.

Virtual Races:
After looking at my racing calendar I had to stop and think how am I going to afford this? I love running and want to take advantage of it all, but my pockets only run so deep. So while stalking a facebook group that I was graciously accepted into, I found my solution to my problem- virtual runs.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Madness Mondays

The 1 minute switch: 1 minute of steady weight training, 1 minute of plyo/cardio craziness until it's done:

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

10 Merrell Challenge Pachacamac- Peru

I came, I saw, I conquered.
         Really, it goes I went, I saw – not everything because it was very foggy-, and I conquered, throwing out a few choice words along the way to much of the amusement of fellow runners around me. The Merrell Challenge 10 in Pachacamac, Peru marks my first official race in over two years and man oh man am I damn proud of it. The 11.6 K race was not only my inaugural race back in to running but my first trail race ever. I can’t say I have all the stats of the race- I don’t even know my time, but what I can say is that this race - hosted by Merrell Peru and Peru8mil - has been an experience that I will never forget and reminded me why I began to run in the first place- the love of exploration because really, adventure is out there!
Myself after race with my awesome Cousin- Dr. Flor Basili

Why this one?
        Good question! This wasn’t some thought out plan to make my way back to running. I needed a run for June and since I was in the neighborhood I said WHY NOT? This trip to Peru had been planned long ago to visit friends and family. Family who are involved with the organization Peru8Mil. A few weeks prior to traveling I thought to myself “Wouldn’t it be awesome to do a run in Peru?!” So I asked around and checked the Peru8Mil facebook site and lo and behold there was a race!! A trail race at that!

Did you feel prepared for it?
         Yes and No. After perusing the website and looking at a few of the previous runs from years past on, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. I tried to study the run however, I wasn’t able to find any elevation maps. I just knew 2 things. 1) it’s 11.6K roughly 7.1 miles 2) It’s hilly.  The latter was an understatement.
The Race outline
        I had done a couple of longer distance runs the weeks leading up to the run – including a 7.1 and an 8 something so the distance was doable. My fear, due to my left arch pain, was the climb. Although I hadn’t trained for hills in running, I had trained for hills at the gym during my classes at the Belmont Athletic club.
*Big thanks to my class for tolerating all the squats in sculpt and hills climbs in Spinning class for the past few weeks. I really feel that the cross training help me complete the run as well as feel pretty pain free (besides the left foot and knee) the next day.
      Lastly, foam rolling or in my case, wooden rolling pin rolling. It’s painful but it really helps massage out those tough calf knots and break down the fascia in the foot.

How was it?
            Amazing! First, I got a small glimpse of what it takes to put on such an event. It’s a lot of work days before, hours during, and hours after. I woke up at 5am that morning to head out of Lima to Pachacamac by 6am. We met at my cousin’s home, who was the Medic for the event, and her husband who is with Peru8mil were making those final orders while  several of their friends were helping make the registration packets/bags, getting last logistics ready and really all the other prep that I probably don’t even know exists. We reached our destination about 6:45 in the morning and several people where already there for the Expo as well as runners.
Cousin Francisco of Peru8mil and Tio (uncle) Cesar
Sister, Nephew-Matteo, Cousin- Paulo heading out to their destination to direct runners

8am: Many of the runners were in their orange shirts ready to run. Several were running around the area just warming up and trying to keep loose. The weather was favorable- cool and foggy which helped cover the mother of mountain that we would run, the hill next to it was visible and mentally, I was preparing for that sucker and only that sucker. Others were taking pictures graciously hosted by Merrell and checking out the Subaru that was doing some tough testing riving on a rugged course. The atmosphere was lively and ready and raring to go.

9am: Group Yoga and Warmup began. Many people participated in this group exercise while other including myself went to mentally prepare. I kept reminding myself- this wasn’t about time, this was about completing the race. Enjoy the run, be thankful to have the opportunity and the ability to do so, and listen to my body.

9:25am: We were asked to line up and get ready to go. They asked us to count down to 10 and we were off.

The Course:

            I’m so grateful to have been reminded of the reason I began to run in the very first place to enjoy the view. Sometimes I am so focused on the pavement I forget to take in the scenery around me. I have done Surf City (Huntington Beach) twice and I can’t tell you even what half that course looked like. Disney is a little different because it really strives to give you a show while you run, this however,  was different. There was no bands, no fireworks nor hundreds of people cheering you on, it was just the sweet scenery of a lovely countryside. I really wish I had brought my camera, but in a way, it’s kind of special, almost sacred. I enjoyed running, waving hello to the countrymen, women and children curious to why the hell anyone would want to run this. We ran alongside a brook, under a lovely natural canopy and up the first hill.
Not my own picture

             My cousin had warned me, be careful the hills they are steep and the way down is just as bad. She wasn’t kidding, with the gravel, the mud, and the narrow paths you had to be vigilant at all times. Around the half point I saw the smiling faces of my sister, my cousin and my nephew as I continued to trot along. At that point, I shed an article of clothing and gave it to my sister who blurted something out to me. However, due to the headphones, I couldn’t hear a word she said. It wasn’t until later, after the race she told me, “ I was warning you, this isn’t the hill, it’s hasn’t come up yet, conserve your energy”.  So I continued along and I could see the orange flags that outlined the course to my right. “I’m almost there I thought!” I began to hoot and holler, clap and cheer while other runners probably thought I was nuts. It was then we made the curve and I saw other little orange flags outline the other half of the course (a switchback) and little orange ants trotting up the hill/ mountain.
Not my own picture- Courtesy of Merrell Peru Facebook

A steady stream of expletives.
            And that’s where it happened, where I remembered every bad word in Spanish I had ever heard came spewing out of my mouth like vomit. Now my fellow runners were amused, they probably thought “oh, she didn’t know!?! Jejejeje”. I just reminded myself, slow and steady, I am here to complete. I hadn’t taken my phone or my watch (the phone I wish I had just to use the runners app to know the elevation) so not to worry about time but judging by my playlist I think this 2nd half took me about an 45 minutes or so. I had done well on my first half - this was grueling. I finally reached the turning point where it became predominately downhill, but I had to carefully maneuver coming down the loose gravel and steep grade. We past back down to the hydration center where I made an absolute complete stop to get three cups of water and Gatorade- something I have never done before. I continued on, a part of my wanted to fly down and worry about the havoc it would take on my knees later, but I slowed down out of fear of injury. We finally made the turn back into the main field and like I have down in every other course, I sprinted to the finish line and claimed my medal.

So what was your time?
            Funny, I honestly, don’t know- I do know it was under 1:30 but that’s about all I know. I made a conscious effort not to look at the clock while I sprinted in but I have gone in to check my official time, and I can’t find myself on the roster. I’ll send an email to inquire but I feel it’s a way of the universe to keep me grounded to completing and not competing towards an injury.
*Disclaimer: I am no where near competing state.

Final thoughts:

            Run somewhere different. This run is/was close to my heart for several reasons: First race back, first trail run, it’s was my Grandma’s birthday who I know was laughing her head off in Heaven while I cursed up a storm, I got to do it in my lovely country of Peru, I got to have my family cheer me on, most scenic run ever- just great! And I felt like a beast after accomplishing it. I truly got myself out of my comfort zone and that’s what challenges are all about. I may not be there for number 11 but I will definitely be back.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Looking towards the Summer

Can I first say- I don't know how bloggers do it. I know one classy lady who does TWO blogs,  is a teacher, a professor, a runner, a mother and still keeps it all up. I'm so jealous. I can't even keep my thoughts straight (and you can tell sometimes by the way I write too). I just want to say bravo to you!
         What does help keep me more (just a smidge) sane is running and right now more than even I'm so excited to continue doing it. My foot has been giving me grief but its been tolerable with the ibuprofen and the daily icing. And with that looming in the back of my mind, I did my first 10K in over two years for National Running Day- June 5th! I was so proud of myself because quite honestly, I didn't know if it was going to happen sooner than later. It's a big step for me and I'm already looking forward to the next, this Wednesday.  Tomorrow is a 4-5 miler, Tuesday is a 2.5-3.5 , Wednesday 10K, Thursday 2.5-3.5miler, Friday 5+, Saturday 10k? and Sunday is a walk. So hello week and I welcome you Summer!
        Happy Running!