As the new year begins (we’re already a week into 2016!!), I always feel the need for renewal, resolutions, and refreshment (as do many people). And with good reason. After running my first marathon in December, I celebrated with abandon (another biscuit please, and yes, extra sausage gravy, with butter? Of course! Did I tell you I ran a marathon?). Ok, I wasn’t that bad…fine, maybe I was.
2015 was a great year. A LOT of miles. A lot of smiles. A LOT of races.
A few people in my running club had signed for a virtual challenge of running 2,015 miles in 2015. The challenge could be done alone, or in partnership with one, two, or more people. I had just finished up running more than 500 miles for 2014 (most of them in about three months), so the idea of going solo seemed interesting. Gulp.
Doing the challenge alone, I calculated an average of just more than 5.5 miles per day. Not bad. Totally doable. Except for the fact I don’t run every day, and I don’t want to. Running 5 days a week is my sweet spot to avoid injury and satisfy my need for mileage. So, I needed to average just under 8 miles a day to reach the goal. Hmmm. Slightly more challenging, considering on speed days, our combined intervals don’t come close to 8 miles. Nevertheless, I signed up for the challenge. Solo. Double gulp.
I also wanted to make the miles more meaningful to keep me focused. So, I decided to try and raise $2,015 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for cancer research through Go Fund Me.
Maintaining the mileage was challenging throughout the year, particularly during hot or bad weather. But, I did it!! I finished the year with 2,200 miles and raised all of the money ($2015!!) thanks to the generosity of my family and friends and the wonderful company of my run buddies.
In the midst of logging those miles, I set new PRs in every distance I ran and even got first in age group in many of those races.
- 5K- 22:18
- 10K- 46:30
- 10 miler- 1:18
- Half marathon- 1:44
- My first marathon with a 3:48 to cap off the end of the year
Now, it’s time to move on. Except, this was the first year I didn’t have a set of resolutions already in my head. I usually make a big deal about it in my head. Something related to fitness and or consistently writing, reading. And this year, I felt kind of aimless without them. Then I thought, I don’t need to get out the parchment scroll and hereby declare that I shall not eat Skittles after dinner (my past resolutions may or may not have included something along those lines…I’ll never tell) or anything like that. Smaller goals for the year are just as good.
- Continue to be consistent with running: I’m still tracking my mileage to stay consistent. I have a potential for injury when I have big increases in mileage from week to week.
- New races and PRs: I have a slew of races already for the winter and spring. I’d like to improve on all my times. First up, 2016 Chevron Houston Marathon. So exciting! I’d like to improve on my time from last month.
- Get a BQ: This year, I’d like to get my Boston Qualifying Time of 3:45 or better so that I can run the Boston Marathon just once. That would be awesome!
- Get back to eating better: I’ve been cooking with a lot of greens and less cheese…ok, slightly less cheese. During the holidays, I slacked off on my daily green smoothies, and hubs and I felt the difference. I’m not one for cleanses and elimination diets because I can’t sustain that for long. I believe in exercising moderation when it comes to my diet. Green smoothies are a great post-run recovery drink and an excellent way to replenish electrolytes and vitamins and minerals. Plus, it’s delicious!
I’m joining the Friday Five linkup started by three great bloggers: Cynthia of You Signed Up for What?!, Mar of Mar on the Run, and Courtney of Eat Pray Run DC. Today’s topic is food and drink. I’m going to share my recipe for a delicious green smoothie. The best thing about this recipe is adjusting as needed to what’s in season and what’s at hand. You can use any fruit you have. I like using fresh rather than frozen, if possible.
- 8 oz. coconut water (you can use coconut milk or almond milk but coconut water agrees with me better and has less calories and no fat compared to coconut milk, no carageenan or other preservatives and all the potassium, magnesium and sodium runners need)
- 4 oz. mango juice (you can sub any juice you wish)
- 1 cup chopped fresh pineapple (sub apples, bananas, pears, etc.)
- 1 cup fresh mango
- 2 cups baby kale and spinach (you can sub collard greens, swiss chard, beet greens, etc.)
- Sometimes we add a cup of nonfat unflavored Greek yogurt for added protein and calcium.
- Blend until smooth and enjoy!