A good book and some more Jillian

Yesterday was a rest day from running. I did complete day 5 of Jillian 30 day shred before work and it continues to get a little easier. I am able to do all of the moves without modification except the push ups. I did the first set up on my toes, but on the second set I only did 10 before switching to knee push-ups. I think I will be ready for level 2 when day 10 rolls around.

Nothing really exciting to report from yesterday. I worked, I came home and read the newspaper (which I love doing), and I fixed breakfast for dinner- biscuits, gravy, eggs, and sausage. I did finish reading a really good book: Open Season by C.J. Box. It has nothing to do with running or exercising, just a good read. The last half of the book got really suspenseful, and I stayed up 1.5 hours past my bedtime last night to finish it because I couldn’t put it down. Thanks for suggesting it, Dad!

Open Season is the first in a series of “Joe Pickett” novels, and after reading this first one I am hooked. I will definitely be reading the whole series.

Today started out with day 6 of Jillian 30 day shred (still level 1). I felt strong during the workout, but it was still challenging at the same time. I am waiting to do my long run until tomorrow after seeing that the weather forecast for today was for freezing rain and tomorrow’s was for a high of 50 and only 10% chance of rain. Plus my running buddy had something going on this morning, so it’s a win-win.

This afternoon I went grocery shopping, which I almost always love doing. I just get excited about having fresh produce in the fridge and the cabinets stocked (this is the part where Barry would call me a goober). The main point of today’s trip was use a bunch of coupons for things we normally buy that were going to expire. Our grocery store has one of those “valued customer” cards and they mail us coupons for items we’ve bought, based on the valued customer card. I don’t care that they use that card to track what we buy, if it means I get coupons for things we need anyway. I also picked up the ingredients for tonight’s dinner.

[not our actual dinner- mine didn’t look this pretty]

Does anyone else love kielbasa? This is the first time I’ve ever sliced it up and put it in mac & cheese. It was basically a grown-up version of mac & cheese with sliced hot dogs. I am also very excited about the 2 for $4 strawberries I scored at the grocery store today!

Last but not least, check out this evening’s sunset. It looked like the kind of sunsets you see at the beach.

What is your long run this weekend? Anyone racing?

Have you read any good books recently?

A progressive run

I started off my day yet again with Jillian’s 30 Day Shred level 1. I think I mentioned it, but I am planning on doing it for 30 days (going up a level every 10 days) to see where I get. Today was day 4 and I wasn’t feeling as sore. The push ups were a little easier today, too.

Then I went to work and ended up wearing out my legs a fair amount. I spent most of the day on my feet walking around in steel toe boots, which are pretty heavy. They’re at least heavier than the flats I normally wear. There was a lot of climbing stairs, ladders, and ducking under stuff while walking and my legs were feeling it when I got home.

I was planning on a 4 mile progressive run today and even though my legs were feeling worn out I still wanted to stick to the plan. I started out with a 10:26 first mile, then picked it up and ran 9:46, 9:31, and 8:56. It was a tough run, but I felt good and felt accomplished when I finished. It was definitely harder than most of the running I’ve been doing lately. The temperature today was 46 degrees with no wind so I ran in shorts and a t-shirt and didn’t freeze like yesterday.

After my run I swung by Little Caesar’s to pick up dinner, since I had a gift card. I love some $5.99 Little Caesar’s hot and ready pepperoni pizza!

I have a confession to make. When I eat my pizza I take the cheese off, and put the pepperoni back on. I don’t actually eat the cheese at all, and I just like my pizza better that way. I think it tastes less greasy. The strange thing is I like cheese and I like cheese bread, too. Also, if I am eating cold leftover pizza I don’t mind leaving the cheese on. Strange, I know. Want to know what’s even crazier? My best friend also eats her pizza this way. We didn’t meet until high school, but we both were doing that with our pizza before we ever met. Great minds think alike.

The Daytona 500 is this weekend and I’m already excited! I’m also looking forward to watching the Oscars on Sunday. Hurry up and get here, weekend!

Do you have a Little Caesar’s where you live? Ever had pizza from there?

Do you follow Nascar?? If so, who is your favorite driver?

What are you looking forward to this weekend?

Another windy run

I started this morning off again with Jillian’s 30 Day Shred level 1. She is kicking my butt! You’d think when you have enough endurance to run for over 2 hours you could handle 20 minutes of strength/cardio/abs. Well, I can handle it, but it is t-o-u-g-h (and it’s only level 1)!

Jillian’s workout made for some sore quad and calf muscles this evening during my 4 mile run. I ran at a slower pace than yesterday, and it was even windier! I somehow tricked myself into believing it wasn’t as cold or windy as it really was, and I headed out in a technical long sleeve shirt and a pair of shorts… big mistake. I froze, especially during the second half of my run, and had to stand by the woodstove in our basement to thaw out afterwards. Turns out it was 34 degrees outside, and that’s not including the windchill (gusts of 10+ mph today). Overnight last night we had gusts up to 60 mph… I’m glad the house didn’t blow away!

Speaking of last night, the apricot chicken turned out pretty good (it’s my Mom’s recipe) and we’re having it as leftovers for dinner tonight.

Delicious! Does anyone else love that Sparking Ice flavored water? I’m obsessed with the lemonade flavor. I also made these cheddar bay biscuits from Red Lobster. I found the recipe on pinterest and they taste like the real deal!

One last thing to share… check out what I came home to this evening:

That would be our puppy’s crate full of stuffing from her gator toy. Apparently she got bored in her crate while I was at work today so she did that. I guess it’s death to “Gator 3” (as in this is her 3rd one…. don’t ask why I keep buying them for her).

The good news is she’ll still carry it around with her like it’s her baby, even though he’s all unstuffed. No need to invest in “Gator 4” just yet….

How was the weather today where you are?

Do you have any pets?

Any restaurant recipes to share with me??

Where did my muscles go and it’s windy

This morning I did Jillian’s 30 Day Shred level 1. It was a tiny bit easier than yesterday, but also a bit harder since my arms are sore. Where did my strong swimmer arms go?? Oh yea… they went away when I quit swimming competitively at age 18 (6 years ago).

My last year of swimming… can you tell which one is me with our caps on??

After work I ran 4 miles with Barry at a 9:57 pace. It warmed up to the high 40’s today, but it is really windy. We are currently having gusts of up to 26 mph with sustained winds of 16 mph. That makes it feel more like it’s 34 degrees outside…. but I ran in shorts anyway. What can I say, I’m a beast! (or unintelligent…)

Mr. Boy joined us for around 1.5 miles of our run. He was actually running with us when the white pitbull-mix (who was loose again) charged us. Luckily Mr. Boy distracted him and they ran off into a field to run some cattle. They need to be careful, though. People will shoot a dog for messing with their cows.

Now dinner is in the oven and I am ready to grab a hot shower and crawl in to some soft fleece PJ pants. As I’m sitting here typing this, I am snacking on some homemade sweet pickles (not homemade by me). Yum!

What kind of cross training do you do?

Did you play any sports as a kid?
Mainly soccer and swimming, but I also played field hockey in high school (and miss it like crazy)

What are you having/did you have for dinner?

Happy President’s Day!

A few more tidbits about the Blacksburg Classic 10 Mile: there were 194 participants in the 5K and 267 in the 10 miler. How cool is that?? I haven’t looked at any stats, but I don’t think it’s common to have more participants in the longer option, especially with a smaller local race. There were also 29 runners who finished in 1:10 or under. This area has some pretty fast runners! I dream of being that fast.

What do you think of the new design and layout? I tried to clean things up a bit and spread stuff out by putting a sidebar on each side of the post. I also added a “contact” page. I really like the mountain background, too. It reminds me of the area we live in:

Mountain overlook near our house
Other side of the overlook near our house
View from our back deck

Today started out really cold, with the temperature in the teens this morning. I had the day off work (Happy President’s Day!) and started off by taking my car to an early appointment to get my state inspection. I spent the rest of the morning enjoying some coffee, re-designing my blog, and catching up on other blogs. This afternoon I did my weekly cleaning and my first ever Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred workout!

I got the DVD for Christmas but hadn’t opened it until now because honestly Jillian scares me. She is intense. I did the level 1 workout and it was tough. I think I’m going to try and actually do the workouts for 30 days and see where it gets me. I should invest in some hand weights- today I used two cans of apple pie filling (the heaviest canned food we had two of). It seems a little ironic to work out with apple pie filling, haha.

It warmed up nicely into the low 50’s today, and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to take the dogs on a walk. Once Barry got home from work, we headed out to the state park trail. Hank and Scout did lots of sniffing- bloodhounds are known for their noses and are amazing trackers. Did you know they are one of the few breeds who’s testimony can be upheld in a court of law?

Tomorrow it’s back to work and back to following a more specific training plan for my upcoming half marathon- the Blue Ridge Half Marathon on April 20! Since I started this blog I have just kind of been running whatever distance I felt like on whatever days the weather allowed me to run. I do a lot better when I am following a predetermined training plan, though. My typical training plan has me cross training on Mondays, running Tues. through Thurs., and doing a long run on the weekend, so that’s what I’ll be doing. Different things work for different people, and this works for me.


"I've opted for fun in this lifetime" -Jerry Garcia