A Delusional Lazy Sunday Morning

On many a Sunday, I wake up wanting nothing more than a lazy Sunday in bed. Ironically (or due to, I’m not really sure) my long run day is also on Sunday.

Yesterday was no different. I woke up and didn’t want to leave the bed. I wanted to read and watch HGTV while eating my breakfast.

So I pretended:




and ate my pre-run coffee and pre-run breakfast (banana + carb + nut butter = pre-run breakfast) nestled under the covers, book in hand and HGTV on the screen. Ahhh.

And then it was 8:15, and I came back to reality. I needed to run 10 miles, and it would take a good hour and a half. Better get out there. Out there, in the blowing, cold 37 degree morning. Yipe!

So I went from breakfast in bed to ready to run:





And I was off…

Usually on long runs I think, “where did the miles go?!” However, on this particular 10 miler, I felt every minute of every mile. Not to say it was a bad run at all, it just didn’t fly by like it usually does.

Around mile 7, I was more than happy to take a quick pause, stretch, and down some pure honey to boost up my glycogen stores:



I just put the honey in a zip lock, and then tore a hole in the corner with my teeth to get to the honey…graceful woman that I am. 😉

And then finally, I was on the last mile…and then done!




10 miles down!

I try to stick with somewhat of a routine on long run days, and after running yesterday, per the routine, I immediately shed my gear and grabbed a coconut water:




And then showered (I was freeeeezing!) clothed, and made the usual post long-run fuelage.


after I took a picture of my (third day of Vita-Mix meals) breakfast, I looked at the clock and saw that it was only 11:00 a.m! This meant there was still hope – I had an hour left of the morning!



Maybe a lazy Sunday morning isn’t such a delusion after all 😉




I only have four long runs left in this running season. My last race of the year is on November 6th, and I gotta admit, I don’t feel too upset about that right now. I’m actually ready to start cross training, lifting more, taking more classes, and beginning a workout DVD! Oh and having a real lazy Sunday in bed 😉


Well I’m off to train a client and then head to the other job! Have a terrific Tuesday, all!

How often do you have a “lazy morning” on the weekends – one where you lay around and watch tv/read just for pure relaxation for hours on end? My answer? Not nearly enough 😉

My second question is for purely selfish reasons: What do you look for in a gym beyond the equipment and classes? I want to offer my clients and the members of the gym I work at something in addition to the facility. To come up with ideas, I put myself in the members’ shoes and came up with ideas that range from a weekly “healthy living newsletter” to a Biggest Loser competition, but I’d love to get your input, too! Seems like you guys always have ideas to offer in the comments that I hadn’t thought of in regards to my posts in general. I really do appreciate any input 😀


Step Turnovers

mmm…turnovers… 😉


Hi guys! Having a lazy Sunday? 🙂

Sundays are for long runs for this gal, so it hasn’t been so lazy for me. Actually, I have big plans for productivity today! Don’t worry, it’ll be fun productivity 😉

Despite going out last night, and then staying up even later when I got home to send a training plan to a client, I woke up feeling pretty stellar. Ready to tackle nine miles.

It’s absolutely perfect running weather this morning. It was bright and sunny and about 62 degrees. Light breeze. I was smiling and feeling the run half way through the first mile.

My goal for the run was to keep an average pace of around 9:30. How’d it go? Not bad!




Total distance: 10 miles. I just couldn’t resist to keep going one more mile once I reached my half way point of 4.5 miles out. 10 is such a nice, well-rounded number! Or I’m just a glutton for punishment.

Total time: 1:34:10

Average pace: 9:25

Mi. 1 – 9:38

Mi. 2 – 9:22

Mi. 3 – 9:26

Mi. 4 – 9:11

Mi. 5 – 9:22

Mi. 6 – 9:22

Mi. 7 – 9:26

Mi. 8 – 9:33

Mi. 9 – 9:35

Mi. 10 – 9:18

I gotta say, the weather made my run fabulous. I just kept chugging along, surprised at how quickly each mile passed. There were SO many runners/walkers/bikers out on the wonderful trail that we have here in Blo/No, too. That always helps.

Before I knew it, I was on mile eight and only had two more miles to go. At this point, my right hip was giving me some pain. I have tight hips, so I definitely need to stretch and massage it today. At this point, I also thought of Beck for inspiration. She ran 20 miles yesterday, and commented on how it was “just two ten milers.” I mean, I only had to do one, so I was pretty grateful, heh ;)  Thanks, Beck – helped me out around mile 9 😉

By the time I finished, I’d sipped my Camelbak dry.

Time out: speaking of Camelbak’s, I’m always leery of how/where I store the plastic portion just because it’s hard to get every droplet of moisture out. Then I read on someone’s blog (who are you? I can’t remember or else I’d give credit!!! 🙂 ) that they stash it in the freezer – that way no mildew can form. I tried it out this time, and it worked perfectly!



OK. Time in 😀

One of the things I’m bad at is rehydrating adequately after long runs. I know this because later in the day I’m very tired and my eyes are red and dry. So today I made it a point to drink a LARGE glass of water when I got back to the house, followed by an entire Vita Coco carton:




I like the regular flavors best, but I get the flavored ones for the husband.

I didn’t stop there – by this time my stomach was ready for food (well…liquid food) so it was time for my go-to post hard workout meal, a smoothie (in a bowl) with granola:




A crumbled Almond Granola Breakfast Bar to be exact!




There’s nothing better after a long run!!

And a little later, there may be some more liquid intake:




in the form of pumpkin beer! 😀 Anyone try this flavor before? Shane and I picked it up at Friar Tuck’s yesterday.


Step Turnover

During this morning’s run, I conducted a little experiment at a couple different points in distance. The other day I was reading Runner’s World Magazine on the treadmill, and came across an article on step turnover.

The article stated that the ideal number of steps per minute is 180.    



It didn’t, however, say anything about how this number relates to the length of the runner’s legs. Since I’m almost 5’10 – probably taller than the average runner, I wasn’t sure if it’d be the same for me, but I used it as a guide. Anyway, around miles 3 and then again around mile 7, I counted how many times my right foot hit the ground in one minute, and then doubled it.

I counted 84 times on mile three (total of 168 steps per minute,) and about 81 on mile 8 (162 spm) – so I was in the 160’s. Apparently I can run a bit faster if I crank up the turnover a bit!

Have you ever counted your step turnaround per minute?


Well I’m off to tend to productivity (but first, Wal-Mart…bahhhh) and then get some relaxin’ in! Hope you guys all have an awesome Sunday!! 🙂

Do you find it hard to stay hydrated after long, sweaty workouts? What tips do you have? I plan on noshing on some fruit throughout the day, too.

How to Create a Training Plan for a Race


Per my training schedule, (which I’ll show you at the end of this post) yesterday I ran four miles with an average pace of 8:58. However, it wasn’t effortless. If you’ve been reading for a while, you know that I like to run in the morning, not long after I wake up, right after coffee. But lately, I’ve been choosing slumber over mileage, which is completely fine, but it also leaves me to do my runs at night.

I officially do not enjoy running in the evening. My legs are lead, my body feels full and heavy, and my energy is low low low. Plus, there’s the whole two showers a day thing which in my opinion is just a waste of time 😉  Not to mention, my appetite is all out of whack!

Needless to say, I was very excited to do my sunrise speed work run today.


Unfortunately, my body wasn’t as enthused. Apparently it’s not keen on running again 12 hours later. I felt a twinge in my quad, and knew the elliptical was a better choice 😉


Over the past few days, I’ve had several questions regarding how I create a training plan for a race.

Now, before I go on, I want to preface this by saying this is what works for ME. The mechanism in which I create my training plan and the criteria that goes into it works wonderfully for me. If you choose to take any of this information and use it for your own training plan, please don’t go by my word verbatim. By this I mean

It is important to keep in mind your schedule, your motivations, and your abilities when creating your training plan.


Obviously, I’m not a pro. I’ve only been running in races since last summer. What I share in this post is based on my experiences with races and training plans, doing research on running and training plans, and my knowledge as a personal trainer. Consider there’s an unsaid “in my opinion” after every statement 😉 There are, however, professional training plans out there for a multitude of different distances, such as Hal Higdon and Cool Running. Be sure to check those out, too!

How I Create a Training Plan

1. Pick a race. Most recently, I signed up for the Frank Lloyd Wright 10k and the Hot Chocolate 15k. The training plan shown at the bottom of this post includes the training for both races in one training plan. Criteria to keep in mind when choosing your race:

  • Distance – do you want to get faster at a distance you’ve already raced? Strive for a Personal Record? Go for a new distance? These are all things to consider
  • How far away is race day? If you’re planning on running a new distance, or haven’t been keeping up with logging too many miles, it’s best to choose a race that’s at least 6 weeks out; eight weeks is preferable.
  • Terrain – If the race involves multiple hills, and you’re not into including hill repeats into your training plan, stick with a race with a fairly flat course. If you’re ready to tackle the hills, go for it!
  • Weather – If you know you won’t be able to get out and train during super cold temps or in snow, don’t pick a race in January in Illinois. Same goes for running in the summer. If you know the heat and humidity stops your from running, stay away from July races – in any state, really 🙂

2. Once you’ve picked a race, it’s time to come up with some goals. Do you want to run the fastest 10K you’ve ever run? Or are you increasing your race distance from a 10k to a 15k or half marathon? When I create a training plan when my goal is to PR, I include slightly less weekly mileage and add a day of speed work.


  • Speed – For a super speedy run, I make sure to incorporate at least 4 but never more than 5 running days into my week: A long run, an interval run, an easy run, a tempo run, and perhaps a pace run. If I have a four runs/week week, then I usually cut either the interval OR the tempo run, and replace it with some cross training.
  • Distance – When increasing my distance, I tend to hover around 5 running days per week: a long run, an easy run (3 ish miles), a tempo OR interval run, a pace run, and an easy-moderate run (3-6 miles depending on where I am in training.)

3. After determining your goals, consider your schedule and consider yourself. You know yourself. I know running three days in a row is my max. After three running days in a row, I need a rest day or a cross training day. If the thought of running five days a week is already intimidating, knock it down to three or four. In my opinion, the most important runs are these three: 1 long run, 1 easy run, and 1 speed work run. Now, think about when would be best to do your long run. Do you have one day that’s less busy than the others? This is what I base my week around. Right now, I run my long runs on Sunday. So I cushion the days before and after with a rest day and an easier day.

4. Start backwards. I find it easiest to work from the race day to the present day. Decide how long your longest training run will be, and schedule that run at least a week before race day.

5. Implement some strength training. I like to have at least one day of full body strength training, even when I’m at my busiest.


6. Use your resources! I don’t like to follow preset training plans verbatim, but I do use them for reference. Again, Hal Higdon and Cool Running both have great baselines.

7. Be ready to not follow your training plan. Life happens. Plans change. Body parts will ache! Be flexible with your schedule. Even though I have a training schedule planned out by the day, there’s usually not a week I follow verbatim. Rollllll with the changes. And it’s OK to have to skip a run or two. However, with that said, it’s usually pretty important not to skip the long runs, in my opinion.

Currently I have two upcoming races, and I’ll probably throw in a 5k (hopefully)  soon too. I’ll have to tweak it a bit, but no big deal 😉 The thing is, I have two different goals within one training plan. For the 10k, my goal is to get a PR. And the for 15k it’s to build up my distance. I haven’t run more than 8.5 miles since my half marathon in May. So it kinda transitions a bit mid way through.

So with all of this in mind, I created my 2+ month training plans for my upcoming races.

Paige’s 10k + 15k Training Plan

I’m sure there will be TONS of tweaks along the way 😉

Do you have any additional tips or suggestions for creating your own training plan? I know there’s stuff I’m forgetting. Speak up! 😀

**Before I go… if you’re looking for something to do tonight, head on over to the Twitter party! LOL yes –  a party on Twitter. It’s hosted by Thermos about their new series of cold matters. The party is tonight at 8pm ET/7pm CT. Join @ThermosBrand to celebrate the launch of our new series with a group of renowned health and fitness experts (including Caitlin from Healthy Tipping Point !)as the cold matters coaches. Ask questions, provide tips about what matters to you and help your family stay active, cool and hydrated through the rest of the summer. Participate using the #ThermosCold hashtag and you will automatically be entered to win some of their newest insulated hydration products.

Off for another busy day! “See” you all tomorrow 😀

Oh My Mint


How was everyone’s weekend? Pretty peachy over here 🙂

Yesterday morning I had a change in plans, client-wise- and thusly, running-wise, and all of the sudden I was getting ready for a 6.5 mile run.


As I mentioned earlier, my next race in the Frank Lloyd Wright 10k in Oak Park. My goal for time is around a 9:00 minute mile, but I actually might need to revise it, because today I finished 6.5 miles with an average pace of 9:02…and it was somewhat hilly!

1 – 9:23

2 – 9:03

3 – 9:05

4 – 8:55

5 – 9:01

6 – 9:03

6-6.4 – 8:14

Whoop whoop! I think now my goal will be around an 8:45 min mile.

After stretching and showering, my muscles were craving some protein + carbs. My favorite post-run fuel is smoothies – and lately, of the chocolate + spinach variety using Chocolate Vega Shake and Go protein powder, frozen bananas, almond milk + spinach. Today, however, I was out of spinach (*gasp*) so I got creative…


this is some mint from my flower bed. But it’s not just any mint…it’s a chocolate mint plant!


Oh…my…mint, this warps a smoothie from an 8 to a 10. A hard 10!!! (She’s Out of My League, anyone?) I sprinkled some Trader Joe’s Pecan Praline granola on top for some crunch – yum!


However, I still maintain that Ezekiel granola is hands down the best granola to top smoothies.


Perfect post-run fuel!


Saturday Shane and I drove up to the Chicagoland area to visit a few of our favorite stores. Actually, this was “the main reason” we took the 1 hr 45 minute drive up:


but stops were also taken here:



and here:IMG_0303

Shane was almost as excited as I was…




We also made the obligatory stop at the WF cafe for some lunch. I basically got every vegetarian option available, in a paper basket.


They weren’t exactly on the way, but the husband knows how much I crave Whole Foods and Lululemon. Maaaajor haulage ensued. Poor wallet, heh heh 🙂 But it’d been a while since I’ve been to either to be fair. 😉

Anyway, back to the “main reason” for the mini roadtrip. A while back, if you remember, I left the house in a fury and broke a few things in my path of destruction. It left our entry way bare. Finally, FINALLY we got a replacement that Shane “didn’t need any help with” 😉 putting together. One hour later…



He got it!



We also got two square, woven baskets to put in two cubbie holes, and a cat to put…wait a second!




LOL. This is Clarabelle’s favorite new hang out spot. No loitering in the cubbie holes, Ceeb! 😛

We also got some new flatware and dishes:


I’m guessing I totally butchered the correct way to place these (sorry, Sabrina!! 😉 )

Don’t they look good with food in them?



Chipotle vegetarian burrito bowl was the way to go after a day of driving 😉

The dishes we had previously were from my college years, so I’d say we were due for a new set 😉


Well I’m off to train a couple clients (a new one today 😀 ) and get my workout on. Catch ya’ll later!

What’s your favorite home furnishing store? I love IKEA, but Crate and Barrel probably takes the cake. And can you believe I’ve never bought anything from William Sonoma? The closest one is two hours away, and we just haven’t happened to buy anything from there! It feels like WS is very popular in the blog world.

Vegetable Surrender

Morning! Sorry about the lack of postage (heh) yesterday. Things get a little hectic between Tuesday and Thursday around here and usually one of the days gets left out. What can ya do!

This morning I woke up and immediately laced up my running shoes and bolted out the door for a 5 mile run. Well, part of that’s true. I stumbled out of bed, drank coffee, and then bolted out the door 😉


Coffee in system, and Camelbak in tote, I headed out. The first mile was a breeze, but the rest were painful! Between the thick humidity and my breathing techniques, the run was a lot harder than it should have been. I love the Camelbak, don’t get me wrong, but I tend not to breathe when I take sips (I’m still running while I take sips) and obviously that’s a recipe for cramps.

Anyway, I cranked out 4.5 miles with an average pace of 9:18. The splits were pretty horrendous. Besides that last half mile where I gave it all I got, I’m pretty sure my time increased with each mile. It’s important to remember to treat mile 1 as a warm up mile if you don’t jog for a warm up before hand, and that little tidbit tends to fly out the window when I start running.

I got back in time to do some planks and shoulder exercises, showered, and then devoured (rhyme alert!) the breakfast of the summmaaa:


Whole Wheat Protein Waffles w/ Maple Greek Butter (just made that name up right now!) on top.

IMG_8303And a banana to switch things up a lil’ bit. Gotta keep it fresh 😉


For some reason, my hunger levels have absolutely been insatiable this week. You all know I love food, but it’s gotten rather annoying! My activity levels, water intake, and meal size/substance hasn’t varied much, so I’m guessing it has to do with sleep. I slept SO well this past weekend, but this week? notsomuch.

Yesterday was one of those days when a vegetable did not pass my lips until 4:30.

Around 4:30, I went a little veggie crazy.

First was mindless eating of fresh and local sugar snap peas and baby bella mushrooms.

IMG_8279 I ate these until I decided what I wanted:


Leftover eggplant and onion. This was a little dry, so I added a tbsp of tomato paste, a little EVOO and some S&P and it was MUCH better. Very tasty indeed. I ate this when I decided what I really wanted:


A green monster. Ok, veggies – I surrender 🙂

I drank this on the way to a client/business partners house where we proceeded to work and talk biz-nass for the next three hours. I may or may not have busted out my new Lange Body Fat Caliper:

IMG_8282And I may or may not have practiced on the hubski 🙂

IMG_8289It’s comin’ right for ya!!!

Good times until I started feeling the length of the day…

Low and behold, I came home hungry.


Finally, this bowl (and a half) staved off the hunger until I woke up this morning.

Well I’m off to work at the BIC (Big Insurance Company for the noobie readers:) )for a while…but the good news I’m pretty sure I’m going out for Indian food over lunch! Hooray!   

Oh! and other good news – I’m going to the Healthy Living Summit!!! So excited 🙂 Who else is going? Can’t wait to meet other bloggers 😀

Find a Camera, Pick it Up

Morning everyone!

Soooo…remember that time I went to Mexico and lost my point and shoot camera along with all the pictures on the interlaying SD card? That wasn’t the first time I’ve lost a camera. In fact, my family and I have joked that I just can NOT keep cameras. Honestly, I think I’ve either ruined or lost 5 or 6 point and shoots in my life.

Well, make that 6 or 7. Yep. Oops…I did it again. Last night Shane and I went on a super cute date to Uptown (formerly known as Downtown…whatever) Normal and brought the pup along for pizza and beer, walked along the brand new huge fountain, and then to an ice cream shop. The pictures were super cute too. I promise, they were. However, I have no proof, as I left my point and shoot on the super cute bench we sat and ate our ice cream on. Trust there were pictures of beer, veggie pizza, big fountains, blueberry ice cream, and yours truly. I went back to the spot this morning, alas someone else had found it and picked it up for their own. Darn.

My dad and I are already searching for deals on nice point and shoot cameras for a replacement. You know, so I can lose that one, too. I’m pretty sure we’re trying to get me in the Guinness book of world records for most cameras lost. Ever 😉 My dad thinks I’m just trying to share the wealth. I’m charitable like that 😉

So instead of super cute date pictures, I have fooood pictures!



Overnight oats w/ feta crumbled coconut butter on top


This was eaten after a 3.15 mile run this morning. I was aiming for 9:15-9:30 pace, and it ended up being 9:06. I did, however, have negative splits which is a bonus in my book.

Just to let you guys know – my running bug is back. I’m currently training for a half marathon. When is the half? I’m not sure. The Chicago Rock n Roll half is already booked, but my cousin Bronwyn is going to try and see if we can form a team (she and my other cousin and aunt are already signed up) that I can join! 🙂 If not, I’ll run the Chicago Half Marathon in September. I haven’t created an official training plan, but I’m loosely basing if off of my first half marathon training plan.

I’m about to head off to the gym to work and train some clients, but lunch will be this lovely veggie wrap:


it contains portabella, cucumber, spinach, and hummus.


I need a little pep, so I’m currently finishing off the French Press in the form of iced coffeeee!


Well I’m off to work, and then to a local winery! Hope to see you back tomorrow with some pictures from a new point and shoot (I’ll never learn!) 😉


Is there one thing that you lose/damage every time you have one? For me it’s obviously cameras. When I was in high school, though, I probably lost my school ID once a week. It got pretty ridiculous!

The Salsa Es Deliciosa

Morning morning! And happy Friday! I’m certainly basking in Friday-ness 😉
So yesterday felt like a Friday, now that I’m working back part time at the BIC. However, it was a looong Friday Thursday!

It started like most do – at the gym, training a client. After training, I had a few hours before I needed to be at the office, so I got in 10 minutes on the stiar climber and about 40 minutes on the elliptical. Headed home, got ready for work, and ate this beaute:

Banana oats + the usual suspects (flax, stevia, almond butter – can do no wrong)

Work was pretty quick, really. Around lunch time, although I wasn’t too hungry, I told a coworker from my old area that I’d meet her for lunch.
Lunch was pretty…random.

Cream cheese + superfruit spread, veggies and hummus. I packed this when I had about 5 minutes to spare, so it was just thrown together. What can I say? I miss the days where I could think about lunch AT lunch time 😉

After work I stopped by the gym because I’d forgotten my notepad there earlier that morning, and ended up just staying there to keep an eye on the door for the owner before training a few clients. While there, I snacked on some almonds and an apple.

I didn’t get home until late because we were running behind, but one of my clients made up for it by bringing me homemade salsa and chips! She knows the way to my heart. And how to make me go easy on her. Kidding 😉

Yhis recipe did not disappoint! Yum!

I poured it atop some romaine, added some extra beans + some blue hot chips, and called it a meal.


It was late, I was hungry, and this meal was quicker than you can say salsa es deliciosa!

We got in one 24 episode, during which Shane brought me down the BOX of Annie’s Bunny Grahams (never a good idea with me – better to pour out what I intend to eat than bring the whole box;)) Alas, I stopped myself after about 1/4 the box 😉 haha

Well I just got back in from taking Niko for a walk, and I have a breakfast cookie waiting for me in the fridge! I’m trying out a new spin class today, too. Then I’m going to call the people at Steam Boat Classic and beg them to let me sign up for the race. I tried to last night, but it closed a day early! Wah!

Have a great Friday, guys!