Tuesday, April 25, 2017

We Can't Wait To Go To The Zoo + It's National Penguin Day!

This post was sponsored by Stonyfield yogurt. All thoughts are my own.

Has it really been just over a week since I ran the Boston Marathon? I have enjoyed a week of zero running and recovery (well, other than the fact that I was running around taking care of my family that got the horrible flu virus! Well, that is a story for another day...). I can't believe how fast this week has flown by and I am working on the race recap to give you all of the details, so stay tuned.

In other news, did you know that today is National Penguin Day? Yeah, I didn't either, until Stonyfield yogurt passed along the info this week. This is way cool and my kids are super excited!

To commemorate World Penguin Day, Stonyfield and AZA are hosting a Facebook Live for kids and their parents to get a firsthand look at these majestic seabirds, as well as the conservation work being done to save them. Tune in to this Facebook Live broadcast direct from Mystic Aquarium in Mystic, CT. Kids and their parents can get a firsthand look at these majestic seabirds, as well as the conservation work being done to save them, with a Facebook Live broadcast today (April 25th), direct from Mystic Aquarium’s Penguin Encounter. During the broadcast a penguin trainer will provide insight into the care, behavior and conservation of African penguins, and viewers will also have the opportunity to see real African penguins firsthand as well as ask the trainer questions in real time. Tune into the @Stonyfield Facebook page at 12:00 PM today to catch the broadcast!

In celebration of World Penguin Day, Jerold and I have an opportunity to visit the zoo with our kids in a couple of weeks! We haven't been to the zoo together as a family in a while, so everyone is excited about this special trip.

Stonyfield YoKids is sponsoring the AZA SAFE (Saving Animals from Extinction) program; together on a mission to help save endangered species. As part of a year-long effort, Stonyfield will not only be contributing funds to field work but aiming to drive kids and their families to see animals and conservation projects first hand at zoos, aquariums, and on the ground where the research is happening.

Humm, I wonder what we'll be snacking on during our giant trip to the zoo? You guessed it, Stonyfield yogurt! My kids are big fans of the yogurt squeezers and I love the vanilla yogurt topped with granola and fresh berries.

As the leading organic yogurt maker, Stonyfield takes care with everything it puts into its yogurts and everything it keeps out. By saying no to toxic persistent pesticides, artificial hormones, antibiotics and GMOs, Stonyfield has been saying yes to delicious, healthy food for more than 30 years. 

Alright, I am off to stretch and go for an easy run today to get my legs used to running again. I hope you guys enjoy World Penguin Day and don't forget to tune into the live broadcast!

Happy running!


Thursday, April 13, 2017

That Time I Was On The Cover Of A Picky Bar

Running, running, Mom life, writing, running, oh hey Jerold (two ships sailing by in the night), Mom duty, running, eating, strength training, core work, hydrating, sleeping, Momming, writing and more running.

Repeat and do it all over again.

And then one day last month, I found out the coolest thing. Say what. Excuse me? You want to put my picture on the cover of a nutrition bar that I eat ALL the time. Please say that again, I don't think I heard you correctly.

I am pumped to tell you all the details of this awesome experience that I am beyond honored to be a part of!

Late last fall, I got a message from THE Lauren Fleshman (you know, bad ass, legendary, amazing runner. Yeah, preciscely.) who told me that they were very interested in using my picture for the cover of one of their bars. Would I give permission for them to use the image?
Um, that was a total no brainer.

This means so much more to me than just being on the cover of a bar. I love what Picky Bars stand for (whole, real food with zero crap. I can give it to my kids with a peace of mind and it's great fuel for marathon training!), and the fact that all three of the founders (Lauren Fleshman, Jesse Thomas, Steph Rothstein) are ridiculously talented athletes that put so much heart and soul into their sport. To be among the other athletes that they have chosen to be on other flavors of their bars, is a feeling that I can't seem to express enough with words. #elated

When we visited three US National Parks last year, I was in complete awe of the beauty and wonder of each location. We started at Bryce National Park, went on to Yellowstone and ended at Zion National Park. We had heard so many wonderful comments about The Narrows - a legendary spot in Zion and couldn't wait to see it for ourselves. Jerold and I were really happy with the progression of the trip and the kids were having a blast. It's been so interesting reflecting on this past decade of being a Mom (I still can't believe Josh is 10). My heart is always raw and I find myself deep in thought about my kids - are they happy? Are we giving them enough life experiences? Are we raising humble, respectful kids who love God, nature and the beauty of the world?

Can we move to Montana?

A river runs through it.

Majastic Ousel Falls in Big Sky

By the time we arrived in Zion, we all were filled with such joy - sun soaked, taking in the breathtaking nature of the Western United States, full of adventures in camping, hiking, biking, fishing (they caught rainbow trout in Big Sky!) and so much more.

When we finally arrived at The Narrows, the kids were blissfully happy to play in the water and as I looked up at the perfect blue sky, I knew this was a moment to capture. I quickly asked Jerold to snap the moment and he nailed it.

"Life is an adventure, go live it!"

At that time, I had no idea what "#lifepoints" was or that is was a popular hashtag created by Picky Bars. Early last fall, I stumbled upon Jesse Thomas's Instagram account and was captivated by the raw, beautiful photos he posted about life as a professional triathlete in gorgeous worldwide locales. I started using the hashtag in my photos that meant something unique and special to me, never knowing what would soon come.

I am so honored that Picky Bars chose me to be on the cover their Need For Seed bar and it will be something that I will forever treasure.
To celebrate, they sent me a huge box of the bars...

Picky Bars for days!

A very sweet note!

They also sent an incredible plaque with a replica of the bar (I'll share that pic soon!), so that I could have the keepsake to remember long after the bars were gone. Thanks so much Picky Bars, you guys are awesome!

As I prepare to run the Boston Marathon on Monday, I cannot wait to rip open the wrapper and sink my teeth into one of these delicious bars as part of my pre race meal.

What is your favorite Picky Bar flavor?


Monday, April 3, 2017

Boston Marathon Training: TWO WEEKS TO GO!

One thing that I have learned, and I want to share it with you guys, ----> in a race, even if you run a mile split (or two) that is off the goal pace, don't let it rattle you. The best thing to do is to tell yourself that it's only one mile and you are going to get back on goal pace the next mile and move on. I engaged in a lot of self talk during the Encinitas half (which I forgot to talk about the official time in the recap - 1:33:33, 3rd in AG) and it was good practice for Boston.

I ran 3.5 miles UP the mountain on Saturday morning and the reward was this gorgeous view.

Marathons are interesting beasts, you run for 20 miles and then race a 10K. To really break it down, you have to stay focused the final 5K, cause it can really get dicey out there if you don't. I am working on my mental toughness the last 5k and I plan to break it down, mile by mile. If you think about it, for a 5K, the point one goes by super fast and then it's less than three miles, which we can endure pain for two plus miles! Get through that mile and then it's one point two miles left. That's it. I'll be thinking about my kids and Jerold and that they will be waiting for me and I can't wait to hug them. I know Jerold will be talking to me at this point - we have this telepathic thing going on and I always FEEL him talking to me, walking me through it. He seriously gets into my marathons as much as I do and I really know I can draw from his invisible energy.

I cannot even believe that in less than two weeks we leave for Boston and the race is TWO WEEKS from today! 

I ran my last long run yesterday and it felt good. I felt like I was tying up a nice neat bow on a very long cycle. I was thinking about the injury last summer and crawling my way back to fitness, little by little. This seems to be the recent story of my running life the past two years. I think I am just going to order up a fun summer of zero injury and a lot of fast racing, mmmk?

Let's get to it - last week's workouts:

Monday March 27th - YES!! A day OFF. My last day off from running was March 6th. Total days off in the month of March = 2

Tuesday March 28th - 5 miles

Wednesday March 29th - Happy 70th Birthday to my Mom! She is such a big part of my racing also. For Encinitas, she asked me, "What's your goal time?" and as I was launching into my speech, she says "Nevermind, I want to know what your coach says, cause I know you always want to run faster and he probably knows how you race better than you do!" And that, is my Mom in a nutshell #ballsy

She doesn't mince her words and if you give her a mountain, she'll climb it.

I ran 6 miles early, as we had a big evening of celebration! Yes, when you turn 70, you pretty much celebrate ALL year :)

Thursday March 30th - 10.5 miles with 10 x :30 second pick ups. 7:00 --> 6:39 pace. Can I tell you how much I love this workout? It absolutely brings your legs back to life after a big race and then resting/easy runs for a couple of days. There's no pressure to run the whole workout out fast, just 30 seconds. It's over in a blink!

Friday March 31st - 7 miles

Saturday April 1st - 7 hilly trail miles - 3.5 miles UP the mountain and then down.

Sunday April 2nd - 16 miles at 7:39 pace. 
My clothes were absolutely soaked after this run. It's amazing how much we sweat! Anyway, this was a pretty sweet run, just moving along - I jumped on the treadmill because we had a packed day of church, Easter picnic and egg hunt, and a little bit of shopping. I think I have my Boston outfit all set. Woo!

We will be spending Easter in Boston and I am trying to plan what in the world we'll be up to that day - which of course is the day before the race! 

Total miles 51.1

Total miles for March: 251.1

We are in slow taper mode, but that doesn't mean I'll be sitting on my butt not running. I just looked at this week's schedule and it's pretty decent! 

I hope you guys have a great start to your week and happy running.

Tell me something fun you did this weekend!

Who raced?