Monday, February 27, 2017

10-Miler + Whole30-ish Update

Happy Monday, from yours truly - Zombiemom. Ugh. The little guy is sick and teething at the same time, so there hasn't been a whole lot of sleeping happening around here. It's times like these though that I'm grateful for so much flexibility at work. Today was a yoga pants, no makeup, work from home kind of day.

In happier news, I crushed a major goal over the weekend. I ran my first double-digit mileage in almost 2 years! 😁 And guess what! I ran it faster than my last and best race pace! I see a new PR in my future....

I was out the door at 8:40, just 10 minutes later than planned, which is basically on time when you have 3 kids. 😝 Unlike the previous Saturday's 9-miler, I felt great right from the start. Clear-headed, rested (relatively speaking), and well-fueled. Plus, it was 60 degrees outside already!

My splits were all over the place, and I probably started out a little too fast, but I was quite pleased with my overall pace.


Remember last week how I said I was going to jump into the vegan Whole30? Well, let me just say that if I was strictly "playing by the rules," I would still be on Day 1, because you are supposed to start over every time you eat/drink something that's not on the plan. Ha!

This morning's breakfast was Whole30 compliant - banana, apple, strawberries, flax and coconut oil
I will say though, I've done well overall. I knew going in I wouldn't be able to strictly follow the plan - mostly because I have a long history of a somewhat unhealthy relationship with food, and I have no desire to go back to strict food rules for myself. Plus, life has to be at least a little fun, am I right?!

Applying some of the principles of Whole30 has really helped me feel better (no more sluggishness and bloating) and made me much more aware of the mindless snacking and the amount of processed carbs and sugar that had crept back into my diet. I'm not really eating starchy carbs right now (save for the occasional bite of something the kids are eating and my pre-long-run protein pancake made with whole wheat flour - which is a must). I'm eating way more vegetables, and drinking less wine. I've made a lot of good changes, so I'm not going to feel bad about little "cheats" here and there.

Protein pancake with coconut oil instead of vegan butter 😏

I have also discovered the amazing combination that is sweet potato with coconut oil. If you have not tried this, go do it NOW!

And while you run off and do that, I'm going to run upstairs to bed and close my eyes for a few minutes before my little sicky baby wakes up!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

A Change in Goals

Hey there! I say this every time, but is it already Wednesday?!

I traveled again this week, and spent a lot of time sitting in the car, but somehow manage to hit my 10k steps and get at a workout in every day.

I wanted to write a post about why I quit Pure Barre. (It still stings a little to say I quit...) I have raved about Pure Barre in the past, and anyone who's friends with me on Facebook knows that I did Pure Barre religiously (4-6 days a week) for more than 2 years - including my entire third pregnancy.

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Headed to the barre at ~34 weeks pregnant

I really never imagined I'd stop going to classes. I loved starting my day with 55 minutes of me time. The work outs are challenging, but yet you can do them with your eyes closed since they are small, isometric movements. It requires concentration and focus. I also loved the sense of community - seeing the same ladies every morning, getting to know them. Plus, it really tones you up!

So why did I quit?

Well for one thing, it's CRAZY expensive! When we moved to SC for my new job, the hubby left his job and started staying home with the kiddos, so it was hard to justify an auto-draft of $149/month.

But the primary reason I quit - my goals changed.

At this stage in my life and my fitness career, I'm looking to really push myself. I've gone beyond wanting to be toned. My goals shifted to building muscle.

Enter Team Fit!

I got hooked up with Team Fit through a friend, and discovered the Anywhere Workout Plan. I have access to a gym at work, but decided that working out at home with the equipment I already owned (plus a couple new items, like a suspension trainer) would be the best option to ensure that I didn't miss workouts.

My garage gym may not be fancy, but it sure does the trick!

I started the plan at the end of October 2016, and completed the full 10 weeks without missing a workout. And I LOVED IT! I loved it so much, that I have continued to do it ever since, adding reps and weight to continue to challenge myself.

Check out those shoulder muscle gains!

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What a difference 10 weeks makes!!

Do I miss Pure Barre? Sure, I do. But at almost 34, I have never felt as strong as I do now.

I highly recommend Team Fit to any and all ladies looking for an effective workout without the boutique fitness price tag! Reach out to me if you are interested and I'll hook you up!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Highs, Lows & Cleaning Up My Act

Yet again, I let more days go by between posts than planned. This thing called life is really getting in the way! 😀
This guy tends to take up my time. 😃

This weekend went by way too fast, as they all do - but it had its highs and lows crammed into that short period of time.

The high was most definitely my 9-mile run on Saturday! I hadn't run that far since my last half marathon way back in March 2015. I've been adding a mile back to my long run each week for the past few weeks and worked my way back to 9. I had hoped to run an 8:30 pace or faster, but I really can't complain about this:

I really thought I was going to quit on this one - which brings me to one of the lows.  (The rest of the lows I'm not going to get into here. I will just say I am emotionally exhausted...) I woke up Saturday morning feeling really icky. I drank a glass of wine the night before, but chased it with lots of water. But I still had a yucky feeling in my head and my whole body. I feel sluggish. I managed to push through it and get it in gear for my run, but it got me thinking. I've been waking up feeling that way more often than not lately. And then it occurred to me....

It's my diet.

Now don't get me wrong - relative to the general population, I eat very healthy. I'm a vegan, I don't do fast food, and really don't drink all that much. But I've allowed too much sugar and too many processed carbs to creep into my diet lately. And I've also been stressed and anxious at times, which leads to a few more glasses of wine each week than normal. All this together has left me feeling gross and sluggish almost daily.

So, starting tomorrow, I am cleaning up my act. I'm starting the vegan Whole30. I guess it's really the Whole30ish, because by nature of being vegan, I'm violating some of the principles of Whole30. But whatever you want to call it, it's going to be HARD! I'm looking forward to cutting the sugar out and reducing the alcohol (because let's be serious, there's no way I'll skip my post long run glass of wine on Saturdays!). I am nervous about living without oats and rice though - both staples in my vegan diet. Tomorrow night I was planning on making rice bowls with tofu, broccoli and teriyaki sauce. Instead, I'll be swapping out the rice with this:

Of course I have to travel again for work this week, which will be tricky...but I am committed to feeling better every day. Plus, I always love a good challenge. 😀

I hope to get my act together to post more regularly with updates on how it's going!

Have a great week!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Postpartum Running: Version 3.0

Good GOD this week is flying by! Normally that's a great thing, but I feel like I haven't gotten much accomplished yet and the week is already half over! I did get to go out to dinner with the hubby on Monday though in (early) celebration of Valentine's Day, which also happens to be our dating anniversary. (18 years this year- what?!?)

So this is what downtown looks like at night!
Anyway...I've been wanting to write a little bit about my experience running after baby #3. So here goes!

My running "career" didn't even start until my firstborn was about 14 months old, at which time I was running about a 12-minute mile. Over the next 2 years, before I got pregnant with baby #2, I ran 3 half marathons, working my way from 2:04:58 in my first race to 1:59:38 in my third race.

While I was pregnant with baby #2, I ran until about 20 weeks before I gave up on it. It was too uncomfortable - especially in the Atlanta summertime. After she was born, I was anxious to get back to it though and started running again at about 3 or 4 weeks postpartum, doing a lot of run/walk intervals. It was humbling. I was SLOOOOW! And it took me a long time to gain any kind of speed back. But over the course of 3 years, I managed to get faster. I ran 4 more half marathons, including my most recent, which was a personal best.

Publix Georgia Half Marathon - March 2015
When I found out I was pregnant with baby #3, I was in almost-peak running shape - routinely running 7+ miles every Saturday, and at least 20 miles per week. I swear I started to get sluggish the second I found out I was expecting! But I kept at it. And I beat my goal of running up to 32 weeks, which was a total postpartum game-changer!!

I was back out there 3 weeks after my little guy was born. Sure, I was much slower than that half marathon PR, but I didn't stop once (although I may have peed my pants 😯)! I made it through a full 3 miles and felt exhilarated.

First postpartum run in April 2016
Flash forward to 6 months postpartum, I worked my way up to 8 miles and was starting to run a sub-9:00 pace pretty regularly. (Even throughout my training for my last half marathon, I rarely ever ran a sub-9:00.) However, I was running 5 days a week and ended up being out of commission with an overuse injury in my right hip. 😐

First week of October 2016
I spent most of October, November and December focusing on strength training and just walking for fitness to let my hip heal. (Although I did run an 8k on Thanksgiving Day against my better judgement...) It was SO HARD to take time off from running, but it was definitely the best thing for me.

I returned to running in mid-December, starting out with a couple days of run/walk intervals, then only running every other day for a couple weeks before settling back into a Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday/Sunday running schedule by January, with Saturday being my "long run" day. And a funny thing happened after all that time off - I got FASTER! I'm now consistently a sub-9:00 runner. In fact, a "slow" run for me now is about 9:00 per mile. I'm back up to 8 miles, and recently ran my fastest run EVER! After THREE BABIES!

January 2016
This most recent (and last EVER!) postpartum running experience has taught me that I really can do anything. Having a baby is the ultimate endurance event - and what doesn't kill you, only makes you stronger!

I'm so excited for my first half marathon since baby #3. I don't like to put pressure on myself with time goals, but I'm really starting to believe that I can set a new personal best if I keep running as well as I am now.

My 21-year-old, Pepsi-drinking, Hostess-cupcake-eating self never would have imagined being this excited about running! 😂

What do you look forward to these days that you used to think was torture?!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

A Whirlwind of a Week

Oh, hey there! What a week! I fully intended to post a couple times,!

I knew going in that the week was going to be crazy. I had my first business trip since baby boy was born that was longer than 36 hours. I was gone before the kids woke up Monday and didn't get back until after their bedtime on Wednesday (though the girls were still up when I walked in the door at 8:15).

Here are some of the highlights...


  • Monday: 40 minutes of weights at 4am before my early morning flight; walking between concourses at Hartsfield-Jackson; walking to dinner in Savannah
  • Tuesday: 30 minutes of weights in the hotel gym; 4-mile run around Savannah
  • Wednesday: 1-hour of weights in the hotel gym; lots of walking around the airport again...
  • Thursday: 4-mile run in the morning; 30 minutes of weights in the evening
  • Friday: 45 minutes of weights at 5:45am; lunchtime walk around downtown Greenville; 28 minutes of HIIT at 8:30pm
  • Saturday: 8.2 mile run at an 8:23 pace - WOOHOO!
Ready to race again!!!
  • Sunday: The whole day was a big workout! 5.5 mile walk on the trail; 55 minutes of TRX/bodyweight in the garage; 3.1 mile run pushing my 4 year old in the stroller. Ooof!
**OOOH!! And I signed up to run the Pittsburgh Half Marathon on May 7 with my uncle! This will be his first half, and my 8th - but my first since baby #3!
 I'm running for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. You can donate here:**

  • 6 flights in 3 days!!
  • Greenville > Atlanta > Savannah on Monday; worked in the office in Savannah
  • Savannah > Atlanta > Indianapolis on Tuesday
  • Prospective client meeting on Wednesday morning in Indy (#nailedit); then Indy > Atlanta > Greenville
  • Worked from home Thursday after all that travel, then back in the office on Friday morning
  • Tried my best to make healthy choices while traveling but still enjoy myself.
  • Went out to dinner with co-workers in Savannah at The Chart House. Had a fabulous kale salad - and some amazing Sauvignon Blanc.
  • Another amazing kale salad (and more wine!) in the airport in Atlanta
  • Out to dinner again Friday - tried a new place locally called Risata Pizza. YUM! I had the veggie sandwich with no cheese.
Phew - I'm wiped out! Sorry for the lack of pictures...there was just no time!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Weekend in Review + Business Trip Prep

Well, it's Sunday night already! Why do the workweeks seem to drag and weekends go by in the blink of an eye?! I don't really feel like I did much this weekend, yet it felt busy at the same time.

Friday night was kind of a disaster. Baby boy would not go to sleep in his crib. I finally laid down with him in my bed, and by the time he fell asleep, it was already 8:30. The last thing I really wanted to do was more exercise (I had already hit the weights in the garage at 5:45am and taken a long walk at lunchtime...). But, I spent way too much time sitting during the day and just generally needed to blow off some steam. So I put my sneakers on, and headed to the garage for 30 minutes, then had a glass of wine before bed.

Friday night shenanigans...

Saturday morning was a complete blur of blow ups and tantrums. I had planned to go for my long run at 9, but didn't make it out the door until 10. (Side note: my goal is to add a mile back to my long run each week this month and run a 10-miler by the end of the month.)

I felt a little sluggish when I first started out, but settled into my run pretty well, and ended up finishing at an 8:27 pace - 10 seconds per mile slower than last weekend's long run, which had been my fastest ever. But I can't be mad about running 7 miles in under an hour at 10 months postpartum! 🙆

Most of the rest of the afternoon was spent taking my oldest to a birthday party. Honestly, she was lucky she even got to go after the behavior she displayed in the morning...

Jumping at Gravitopia
Daddy stayed home with the littlest munchkins for the almost 3 hours we were gone. In order to give him some time by himself, I took all 3 kiddos to the grocery store with me. Oof.

Most difficult cart ever - but how cute are they?!
After my long run, a kid birthday party, and pushing the massive car cart around Publix, I definitely earned that popcorn and glass of wine (or 4) that I had after the kids went to bed!

This morning, I managed to stay in bed (with the baby, of course) until about 6:30. Woohoo! 😀 After several cups of coffee and a protein pancake the size of my face, I hit the garage for my Team Fit Anywhere Workout. It was the Day 6 workout which, to me, is the most challenging but the most gratifying.

Combination of TRX, dumbells, and body weight exercises
We took a family trip to Walmart (so exciting...) and then I spent the early afternoon preparing for a 3-day work trip. I'm excited to have 2 nights in a hotel by myself, but I'm anxious about being away from the baby for 3 days. And traveling with a breast pump sucks!!

I pounded out a 4-miler in the afternoon and was pleasantly surprised at how great my legs felt. I tend to run quite a bit slower the day after a long run, but was pretty pleased to run an 8:33 on a gorgeous 60-degree day.

And now it's after 8pm, and I'm just about ready for bed! My flight leaves at 6:45 tomorrow morning, so I'm planning to get up and get a workout in at 4. Yes, 4am - because #goals. Thankfully we live just 4 miles from the airport, which is super tiny and not busy at all. I'll be headed to Savannah by way of Atlanta tomorrow, and then Indianapolis by way of Atlanta on Tuesday, before coming back home on Wednesday, again by way of Atlanta. I have just as many articles of workout clothing in my suitcase as I do work clothing. 😏

Wish me luck! It's going to busy and slightly stressful - but such is the life of a working mama!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

On the Struggle Bus

Y'all... (I don't really say that but it seemed like the right word to start...) I have been riding the struggle bus big time for the last 36 hours or so. I don't really know what brought it on, but starting about noontime yesterday, I slipped into super self-conscious,anxiety mode.

I felt like a fraud. Like at any moment, someone was going to realize that I'm not actually good at my job; I'm not really a good mom; I don't really have my sh*t together. And when my mind goes there, my body follows.

There's only one thing I know to do when I feel like this. Sweat it out. Push myself. Challenge my strength physically and mentally. So that's what I did.

I headed to the garage at about 8:15 last night, after an unusually long, drawn out bedtime for baby boy (because, of course...). I was tired, but I made myself do it. I needed the endorphins - my medicine.

I went to bed feeling only slightly better.

When I woke up this morning, I felt exhausted. So tired, I planted myself on the couch at 5am to watch the news and almost didn't even get up to get my coffee when it was done brewing. Yep - that tired. But I made myself do it.

Thursday is a running day for me. I could hardly even think about getting out there to run. But after I drank my coffee, I made myself do it. I needed it. I needed to remind myself that I can do anything if I decide I'm going to do it.

My run felt more difficult than usual - partly sore legs, but mostly just a mental struggle. I started out slow, but finally got it in gear, and got it done.

I came back feeling a lot better - about 70% back to me.

For the rest of the day, I cranked out some work, with a break thrown in for a walk with the kiddos (I worked from home today).

Toward the end of the day, I got invited to attend a meeting in Indianapolis on Wednesday and it was just what I need to push me closer to 100% confidence. (Is anyone ever really 100% confident though?!) It was a reminder that yes, I am good at my job (though not perfect). I am a good mom (though not perfect). And I do have *most* of my sh*t together.

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I have at least done 3 things right!

And now this is me, getting off the struggle bus at the end of the day - red wine and dark chocolate in hand.

Goodnight! 😌