Friday, June 29, 2018

Fast Friday

I can't tell if this week dragged on or if it went fast. We were busy this week with a lot of different things so here's the recap of a few things we did.

Saturday was my long run and it was warm. I made sure to stop at all the drinking fountains I could while running.

Then we spent the afternoon playing with a total of 8 kids at our house. To some that is a normal thing, to us we are used to just our 3. But we had fun playing outside games, running through the sprinklers and having popsicles.

On Sunday we got to go listen to my cousin's homecoming talk. She's been on a mission in Oregon for the past 18 months and we are so happy she's home! We went over to their house for waffles afterward. I should have taken a picture of my waffle but it was gone pretty quick because it was delicious. My Aunt has an awesome recipe for them.  I did take a picture though of all the contraptions my uncle has made lately. He's an illustrator of some awesome books, but he likes to build little gadgets in his spare time.

Trevon wasn't feeling well on Monday so he stayed home to rest and we decided to clean out some art drawers at our house so that next school year we will have room for the new projects.

V decided to take some artistic liberty on his face while we were at that task. He got into the stamps and made sure to stamp his eyes and all over his legs.

While Trevon and V rested for the afternoon I took the girls swimming. It was fun to have someone on one time with them.

This girl has improved so much in her swim lessons this year.

Tuesday I came home from my morning workout to a spider hanging in my face. It wouldn't move and my hands were full and I didn't have anything to smash it with, so I just sat there for a minute waiting for it to leave.

I did a lot of meal prep on Tuesday and made some granola again finally. This is one of my favorite breakfasts/treats ever.

Wednesday was errand day. The girls had swim lessons so I took V to the store while they were swimming. He fell asleep in the car and normally will wake up when I move him but he didn't. Then when I got done shopping he stayed asleep while I put him back in the car! He was one tired boy!

My run Wednesday night just about killed me. It was 96 degrees when I went out at 8:00 PM.  My GPS stopped tracking me halfway through, my brain was tired and giving me a lot of negative mind games, my left calf kept getting a twinge, and I was super dehydrated. Bad runs happen sometimes. I still hit my paces pretty close to what I was hoping and I finished.

We've been going to the library a lot lately and I checked out this book. There wasn't one in the adult section but I found one in the juniors section and it was really good! Does anyone know if they're different at all?

Here is what my workouts looked like this week:

Saturday: long run ---> 9 miles at 9:00 pace

Sunday: Rest day

Monday: easy run --->4 miles @10:00 pace

Tuesday: strength training

Wednesday: Tempo Run ---> 4 miles @ 8:30 pace

Thursday: Strength Training day

Friday: Speed work--->3 ish miles

Total miles for the week: 20

When was the last time you had a hard workout that you felt like you weren't going to make it?

How is your training going? Who's training for anything specific?

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

How To Train Your Body To Pace

Let's talk about pacing yourself. This is obviously a big thing for runners. Pacing has a lot to do with mind games and training your body to hold a certain speed for a long amount of time. I think that this is something that it took my body a long time to figure out. I'm pretty sure that years before now I was all over the place with my pacing but now I'm working on taking a few of my runs to specifically pay attention to my pace.

There are also a lot of different aspects of pacing that we could talk about. Today I want to talk about the kinds of runs that help you learn how to pace yourself, but first, let me say this, pace is something that is different for everyone and you shouldn't ever compare your pace to someone else's. It just makes yourself feel bad for not making the progress that someone else is making and it's not worth it.  If you are going to compare your pace to something, compare it to yourself (and even then, be careful and be kind to yourself).

Pacing is so important because we don't want to get out on our run or start out on race day too fast and realize halfway through the race that we won't have enough energy to finish strong. So you have to learn how to pace yourself at different speeds and you need to practice it. We do this with a lot of different types of runs, but the easiest run to use for pacing practice is a long run.

Long runs are not meant to be speedy. You use a long run to gain more mileage and endurance, so you run these at a slower pace. That's why these are great for training your body to keep a pace for the whole run. You don't really have to focus on anything else except for keeping a slightly slower pace for a longer amount of time.

I like to use my long runs to focus on my pace by checking myself every mile or so.  I start with a warm-up and work my way up to a comfortable pace that I know I can hold for a long run and then I  make sure to notice if I've sped up or slowed down at all. I make sure my form is still good even if I'm feeling tired. If any of those things have changed I try to fix it and keep going.  If music helps you, pick a playlist of songs with the same beat to keep your legs moving at the same speed the whole time.

Once you start practicing holding your pace on your long runs, you'll start noticing that your body does pacing more automatically than it did before. It won't take as much concentration for you to hold onto a certain pace. I love how our bodies will adapt to running like that!

Is pacing something that is hard for you to figure out?

What is something you've always struggled with in running?

Monday, June 25, 2018

What's For Dinner Tonight? Tacos!

Do you have a hard time coming up with dinner ideas in the summer? I think I have a hard time coming up with dinner just about any time of the year but sometimes in the summer, we get so busy that I forget to think about dinner until it's time to make it. So summertime is filled with quick and easy dinners for us and I thought I'd share one with you now.

Spicey chicken tacos. We love these because they are quick, I almost always have what we need for them, and they taste amazing. So here is what you'll need.

1/2 lb chicken. We use the already grilled chicken strips from Costco for these because it makes life so much easier!
1 TBS cooking oil
1 serrano pepper
1/2 medium onion
1 lime or lemon (or lemon juice)
1 tsp-Tbs hot sauce We like THIS kind
shredded cheese
soft corn tortillas
and any other toppings you like on your tacos (tomatoes, cheese, lettuce, etc)

In a saute pan, cook the chicken in some oil.  Add pepper and onion and cook until the onions are clear. Add lemon juice and hot sauce and mix well. Cover with a lid and set aside to keep warm.  Put some oil on a griddle and place the tortillas on top. Heat one side and flip. Put some cheese in the middle of the tortilla and let it melt. Add the meat. Fold tortillas in half and add toppings as desired.

We like to use refried beans as a side dish to this but Spanish rice or basically anything else would be a perfect side dish!

What is your go-to summer meal?

Do you like corn or flour tortillas?

Hard or soft shell?

What is your favorite kind of cuisine? 

Friday, June 22, 2018

Fast Friday

Happy Friday! How has everyone's week been? Here are a few things we have been up to.

Last Saturday Trevon's work had their annual summer party at Lagoon! We have loved this about his company. We left V home because he's too small to ride the rides still (maybe next year) and we took the girls and played all afternoon.

We rode most of the rides together. J was big enough to go on a few of the bigger rides this year, so Trevon and I took turns taking her on some of those while the other took M to ride some of the rides she could ride all by her self. I think she really loved that she got to have her own turn.

Then we let the girls go on a few together without us,  (I love that they are so close and get along so well!) Before we had dinner.

When we got home we let the girls stay up and tell their friends about their adventures while we spent some time with V one on one.

For Father's day we went up to spend some time with Trevon's dad and family. While we were there, we saw some little bunnies and watched them for a little while.

This week was one of those weeks where I just didn't take many pictures and we didn't do a whole lot of super exciting things. Monday we got our errands run and then the kids played outside for the afternoon.

Tuesday was busy. I had my sister's kids in the morning and then we had swimming lessons and played in the afternoon.

Wednesday was another errand day. We went back to the park for a little while before I had a dr appointment to get to, (M thought it was fall time and dressed in long sleeves and tights) so the girls got to play with their other cousins for a little while.

Thursday was another cousin day! We went to the library with my mom and my sister's kids to do the make and take project.

Then we spent the afternoon swimming with the cousins. I always braid the girl's hair so that it doesn't get too knotty while swimming. French braids were never something I could do until I had little girls and then it was like magic that I could. V did not want to get out of the pool. That little boy swam for 2 hours! and then he fell asleep on the way home.

This is what my workouts looked like this week:

Saturday: Long run ---->7.75 miles

Sunday: rest day

Monday: Easy run ---->4.5 miles

Tuesday: Strength Training -->leg day

Wednesday: Speed work ----> 3.5 miles

Thursday: Tempo Run ---> 4.7 miles.

Friday: Strength training --- Upper body and core.

Total Miles: 20.45

Here are this weeks most popular posts:

3 Always a Hit Camping Treats

Cedar Breaks National Monument Hike

How We Get Our Kids to Clean and What Hasn't Worked

I hope you have a fantastic weekend!

Can you french braid?

Do you like rollercoasters?

What was your best workout this week?

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

3 Always a Hit Camping Treats

Today I wanted to share a few of our favorite camping treats that we shared with our friends on our last camping trip.  These are both treats that I grew up making and loved to have as part of my camping trip!

The first one is camping cupcakes. You will need 1 orange or lemon per person, a cake batter, tinfoil, and frosting.

First you cut the top off the lemon or orange. I usually make them with oranges because they are bigger, but this time I forgot our oranges and luckily had extra lemons (and our friends had a few oranges) to use for it and the lemons were small but they tasted amazing.

Hollow out the peel. Sometimes you need to use a knife to cut around the fruit before scooping it up.

Then fill it up 3/4 of the way with the prepared cake batter.

Put the top back on, wrap it in tinfoil and set it on the hot coals for 20 minutes.

When they are done frost them up and enjoy lemon/orange infused cake!

The next thing I want to share is fresh squeezed lemonade for hiking.  This is why I needed candy sticks so bad! We used to squeeze lemons while we hiked all the time growing up so all the credit on this brilliant tip goes to my parents (I'm not sure where they learned it from).

Each person that is hiking gets a lemon. While you're hiking you start squeezing and you keep at it during the hike. When the lemon is pretty squishy (don't squeeze it hard enough to rip it or break it) you get a flavored candy stick, poke one end through the lemon, take a small bite out of the other end and then, start sucking. After a little while of sucking on the candy stick, you'll start getting lemon juice up the candy stick like a straw! My favorite is strawberry, but I also liked watermelon a lot too.

I love this treat because it's different than anything else, it gives you something to do while you hike, and it's refreshing!

Another one is smores, of course, but with a twist. I've never been a big fan or smores or marshmallows, but these ones are way better than a regular s'more.

The only difference between this s'more and a regular one is that you switch out the chocolate for basically any other form of chocolate. I've done Resses, E.L. Striped cookies, grasshopper cookies, and now I've done Magelbeys chocolate cake and Kit Kats. In this picture, J put a marshmallow between two Kit Kats and cut out the graham cracker altogether.  Switching it up really helps with the chocolate to marshmallow ratio. I highly suggest it.

What do you put on your S'mores?

Do you have a favorite camping treat or tradition?

Do you prefer lemon or orange flavor?

Monday, June 18, 2018

Adjusting a Half Marathon Training Plan for You

I signed up for my half marathon, so it's official now! No turning back. Since this is my first half my training is kind of a new experience for me. I've honestly never followed a strict training plan before, and I can't say that this is a legit plan since I'm not working with a trainer or coach, but it's more of a plan than I've actually ever had.

If you're in a similar boat as I am, and don't know what to do to change up your training for a race, I'm going to share how I altered a few training plans to work for me. Hopefully, my ideas can help you adjust a training plan to fit your needs.

Before you start putting a training plan together, you need to decide what your main goal is for this training cycle. Do you want to cut down on time or run a further distance? For me this time my main goal is distance. It's my first half marathon, so while I'd love to have an awesome time for my first half marathon, the real goal here is to finish it and have fun. (Your first race is always an automatic PR) 

Now that you've come up with a main goal find a plan (you can find them anywhere online), or two, that fits your needs as best as it can. Take into consideration how many days a week you'll be running and cross-training, how many days your body needs for rest days, The time you have to give to this training etc.

This is where it gets a little tricky. Adjusting it to your needs. Since it's hard to know what you're goals, needs, and schedules are, I'll tell you what I did for mine.  At the beginning of my training, I was just using the half marathon plan on Aaptiv. But I noticed after a couple of weeks that it was a 6-8 week program for how often I run, and I had 11 weeks left before my race. So I wanted to make it a little longer.  So I found half marathon training program that was 12 weeks and I scheduled my runs based on that program.  

Sundays are always my rest days.  Mondays are an evening run with my sister-in-law so we usually do a slower or shorter run that night. Tuesdays and Thursdays are for strength training and I can only run every other're getting the picture. I have to adjust it to my very particular schedule. I'm not someone who can just run whenever I want right now. That's just not what fits into our lifestyle at this point. 

I printed out a blank calendar and then I sat down and wrote out every workout down. What days I was going to run, what kind of run, how many miles, if I was using the aaptiv app for the run etc. I tried to be detailed so that I wouldn't have to think about what I wanted/needed to do that day. I could just get ready and go.

The last piece of advice on this is that you need to follow the plan as close as you can, but you also need to be flexible and ok with changes to it. If you know you're going to miss a training day, it's ok to skip it. If you're focusing on mileage and you know you're going to miss a long run, maybe plan ahead and skip your tempo or your speed workout to switch it for your long run. And then pick back up from there. 

I'm not a trainer or coach, this is my first half marathon so this is all an experiment, but I hope that it gave you an idea of how to put together a training plan that will fit your needs. 

What is the longest race you've run?

Have you ever worked with a personal trainer?

What are you focusing on right now?

Friday, June 15, 2018

Fast Friday

It's finally Friday! This week was a challenging one for us. I feel like the kids were just constantly on my last nerve. I also think that's very normal to have a week or two like that in the summertime when everyone is home and together.

Last weekend we tried to spend a lot of time playing outside. V found that it's super fun for him to climb on, sit on and jump off of these utility boxes by our house. I'm sure that's frowned upon by the city people but sometimes you gotta just let little boys be boys.

We had an amazing brinner Friday night.

And it was definitely worth noting because this syrup  It's definitely a favorite. (Kodiak Mountain Berry. You can get it cheaper at Costco.) made my french toast taste like a jelly donut. For french toast, I use Costco's Cinnamon Chip bread and it really takes it to the next level.

Saturday morning was my long run. I meant to leave early but ended up sleeping in and still went out by 8:00. It was already 70 degrees out and it felt really hot! It made this run a struggle but I kept reminding myself that time didn't matter, it was supposed to be easy paced.

The kids spent some time playing the Ipad together over the weekend. It didn't last long. It never really does for us, but it was cute to watch them play together.

Monday turned out to be interesting! I went outside to get M so we could go to the grocery store, J followed me out and V decided to lock the door. My keys were inside. Thank heaven I had my phone! I called my Dad and he showed up to try to help me pick the lock with my neighbors kit and after trying for a little while we weren't getting it. He called my uncle and he brought my cousin each of them had lock pick sets and were working on both doors. Meanwhile, V was just helping himself to snacks out of the garbage can, unloading the folded clothes, waving at us through the window, yelling "Hi" back when we were trying to get him to unlock the door, turning himself a movie on and basically anything else a little 2-year-old boy thinks is fun while mom can't get after him for it. After 5 people trying to get the doors unlocked with 3 different kits, we ended up getting through the window haha. It was an adventure, and a journal entry and I'll have to write it down the long version somewhere soon. 

Tuesday was the first day of swim lessons for the year and afterward, we all got in and played for a while. 

We've been enjoying summer evenings and let the kids play a little longer than usual. While they are playing we threw a frisbee around, something we haven't done in a really long time. Trevon got this frisbee for his birthday and we hadn't used it yet. If you're in the market for a really good quality frisbee, THIS is it! It's thick plastic so it's not easily breakable and it doesn't hurt when you catch it like other frisbees sometimes do.

While we're throwing the frisbee, the girls were coloring on the grass with their friends. Wednesday evening after my run I noticed that their coloring stuff was still out. So I grabbed it before I headed inside. I expected the books to be ruined because of the sprinklers but they were all fine.

The crayons, on the other hand, had all melted into one big block of wax. I guess we will be getting new crayons. 

Thursday's swim lessons got postponed until Friday but we went swimming anyway. We also did a lot of playing with friends. I love when the kids are busy because they seem much happier that way! 

Heres what my training looked like this week:

Saturday: Long run ---> 6.5 miles

Sunday: Rest day 

Monday: Easy run ----> 4 miles

Tuesday:  Strength Training lower body and core

Wednesday: Race Pace practice ---> 4 miles @ 8:43, 8:15, 8:03, and 8:02

Thursday: Strength Training upper body and core

Friday: Speed work ---> 3.5-4 miles

total mileage for the week ----> 18.5 miles

Have a great weekend! If you have any questions you can ask me in the comments, or on Instagram or Facebook!

Do you have a favorite syrup?

What is your favorite breakfast food?

How is your training going?

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Cedar Breaks National Monument Hike

Ok, so I shared a big post about our campout to Cedar Breaks and I said I'd write separate posts about a few of the things we did on that camping trip. So today I'm going to share about the hike we did at the Cedar Breaks National Monument.

When we got there we made sure to go to the bathroom and fill up some water and sunscreen up! Even when it's cool weather there, I'd suggest putting sunscreen on. You're at 10,000 feet at this point and being that high up means you're closer to the sun and will sunburn easier. 

they had a ranger there teaching us all about sun flares and he had a certified telescope for us to take turns looking at it. He also told us that later that evening they would have a stargazing event. And it sounded like in the summertime they do a lot of events like that for the hikers.

We went to an overlook as we walked in and took some time checking it out. 

And then we headed on our way. We went on the Sunset trail and the whole trail was paved so it was really more of a walk than a hike. But it was great for the kids.

It crosses the road twice. And then you get to a lookout area.

At first, the girls thought we were back in Bryce Canyon because it looks similar. But it's kind of neat because you look to one side of the path and see red rock and you look on the other side and see green grass and pine trees. There's not a lot of places that you get to see both of those at once.

They had some benches to rest on while you looked out.

We didn't stay long though because the kids were ready for lunch! So we headed back to a picnic area that we found for lunch and to work on our Jr Rangers books.

When we got back to the visitor center, the kids got sworn in to be Jr Rangers. To keep nature beautiful and clean, and to always clean their rooms. 

This is a great hike/nature walk for kids! And it's super fun for them to work on their books that you can get for free at the visitor center to become Jr Rangers. I highly suggest this. V could have probably walked the whole thing but Trevon ended up carrying him in the hiking backpack.  It was good because he eventually fell asleep in there. 

Do you sunburn easy?

Have you ever become a Jr Ranger?