Saturday, January 8, 2011

First Real Run of the New Year

Now that it's the New Year, Helen and I have decided that we have to get down to business. She apparently got a lot of mocking back in the UK from her dad and boyfriend (who are both runners) and who don't believe she'll actually do it, so she's returned to Avignon full of determination and pep. I haven't heard anyone tell me they don't think I can do it, but I do want to prove this to myself and make this half marathon part of the proof that I'm spending the rest of these 6 months focusing on me and making me happy. Who knows what these next 6 months will bring based on recent conversations, but, if nothing else, I can at least make sure that I've lived this remaining time in France to the fullest, enjoyed my friends, and kept myself healthy and positive.

Since I've been back in my apartment (which feels really great, by the way), I've been tracking and eating really healthy. I actually had my first run-in with cooking bulgur wheat and, I must say, I'm a big fan. Kyle and I also attempted to make a dessert by warming up bananas with cinnamon and I must have done something different from what my friend Amber does because they were not good.

My friend Kyle playing cheap sommelier in the Casino supermarket under my apartment

I also invested in a coffee pot to brew the yummy American coffee I brought back with me and have been able to enjoy some yummy American-ized breakfast this week, since I also brought back packets of Quaker Oat's Raisin, Walnut, and Date oatmeal. YUM and with added walnuts and cranberries only ends up at 6pts! WOO!

So, as you can see, it's been a good food week. I made extra of that bulgur wheat dish and grilled all of the 8 chicken breasts, so I've been able to reheat meals all week making for a healthy time! :)

Now, onto the aforementioned run. Since I've been back, it's been "balmy" (i.e. around 50ºF with no real wind to speak of) and I've been loving it. It was kind of chilly walking to meet Helen in my sleeveless running top, but it made for a really nice temperature for the run. The first mile was at a great pace: 11:45, but it proved to be unsustainable as you can see for our remaining miles (that are a bit skewed, I suppose since we took a walk break at 1.5 miles for .1 miles and stopped for water 3 or so times). I forgot to wear my HRM, but, from the way I was feeling, I know that my HR was at least consistently into the 180s (which is where I get really really uncomfortable) if not higher.

It was a really tough run (which is embarrassing to say) and, though my legs aren't sore at all today, my back and abs really are... Have any of you ever had that happen? Anyway, I'm glad we got out there--we're still working on our plan and are going on a 4-miler tomorrow before starting "real" training next week. Here goes!

Oh and to end on an adorable note, here's a cute photo of one of the girls I babysit (Thymiane or "Tim") and me sharing some jasmine tea on Wednesday. She's the oldest and is starting to enjoy doing grown-up girly things. I love them!

1 comment:

Christina said...

Great job getting out there and running! 50 degrees? Seriously? I am so jealous! I hope Helen's family isn't serious. :( You're doing great with the tracking! You make some tasty-looking meals over there. Yay for American oatmeal. That's my official post-workout fuel.

Your back and abs (together, your core) keep you stable when you run. It could be that you need to do some core strengthening, or it could just be that they're sore from not being used to stabilize your body while running in a while. Also a possibility is their hurting because of poor form. How much attention do you pay to your form while running? If it's been a while since your last run, and this run felt really difficult, chances are good your form suffered.

Cute kid. :)

Keep up the good work! It sounds like everything is going really well for you!