Yoga for Runners

Saturday morning Adam and I went to a local restaurant, Core Life Eatery for a free Yoga for Runners class. The class was led by Sophia Tashkovski, a local yoga instructor. We started with a small group run with some other participants taking the class. This was my first time running in a group that was not a race. I really enjoyed chatting with other runners and hearing about their experiences in races they have participated in during the run. I enjoy running, but have only done a small handful of races so far. While I enjoy participating in races, they can be packed with people which doesn’t always allow you to run your best. They can also be expensive to do. I know they are expensive to participate in because they are expensive to put on, and often they are supporting a charity of some type. However, running for me is often just a free way to get exercise, spend time with Adam and Porter, and done on my own time. Since I have started running I have done 1-3 races each year.

The yoga class was amazing! It was an hour and fifteen minutes of great stretching and learning new yoga positions and techniques, while working on form and practicing some positions I have become familiar with. The teacher, Sophia, was very knowledgeable about the muscles runners should pay close attention to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The restaurant that put on the class, is a newer restaurant in the area that serves delicious, healthy food. Probably my favorite part of what they offer is their juice selection! My two favorite juices they offer are the Cranberry Cayenne Lemonade and their Beet Lemonade! I’m not going to lie, sometimes I go there just for the juice. We were getting hungry, so we stayed for lunch! I had the steak, bacon and bleu cheese salad and Adam had the Tuna Poke bowl. Both were very tasty! It felt great to have such a healthy meal after our workout.

You can check out a short video of the class here.

It was a beautiful day on Saturday, so after we got back home from Core, we grabbed Porter and headed to Onondaga Lake Park to run a little bit more and have a relaxing walk! We ran 2.5 more miles and then walked about 5 miles. There were tons of people at the park enjoying the beautiful day!

I wrapped up my week 6 marathon training on Sunday morning with a 12 mile run. This was the longest run I have done in quite some time! It felt great! The sun with bright and beautiful and the weather was perfect! Looking forward to more long runs in the near future!


Week 6 Marathon Training

Monday- 3.1 Miles Treadmill
Tuesday- 10 Miles Treadmill
Wednesday- 6.3 Miles Outside
Thursday- 6 Miles Treadmill
Friday- 4.1 Miles-Treadmill
Saturday- 5.9 Miles Outside
Sunday- 12 Miles Outside

Winter Wonderland

I hope you all had a great weekend! If you’re in New York, I hope you were able to dig yourself out of all the snow we got between last night and this morning! I think I woke up to more snow this morning than all of January! In January we had a record low of 8 inches in Syracuse! Syracuse has not seen this little of snow in January since 1950! Pretty crazy stuff! These pictures are from my walk this morning with Porter.

I was unfortunate enough to get yet another cold last week. I am never one to get colds! The cold medicine in our house expired in 2011- that’s how little we get colds. Needless to say we had to purchase some new meds. I have been trying to drink a ton of fluids, take my Emergen-C tablets to get some extra vitamin C, resting, going through tissues like there’s no tomorrow, and sucking on cough drops. I finally feel like I’m on the upswing! Friday and Sunday I actually had to skip my runs. I felt awful for skipping them. Friday was only a 3 mile run but Sunday was suppose to be a 10 mile run. I am going to try to do a 10 mile run this week to make up for it. Those are the important runs that make a lot of difference for me. There was just no way I could have done them.

This weekend Adam and I had planned to go to the Finger Lakes for some wine and beer tasting and we scheduled a brunch at our favorite winery for Sunday morning. Our hotel reservations could not be refunded, so we still went and tried to make the best of it!

We left Saturday after we both got our 4 mile runs in. We started with Prison City Pub & Brewery. Their Mass Riot IPA was named the best IPA on the East coast. They have a limited supply of it, and just tapped a new keg on Saturday morning. Adam is a huge fan of IPA’s so we stopped there for lunch on our way to the Finger Lakes. I stuck with some green tea. Their food is delicious! I had a butternut squash soup with a grilled cheese and apple sandwich. Definitely helped my throat!

We checked our also went to Serenity Vineyards, Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard, Climbing Bines Hop Farm, and Belhurst Castle Winery. It was a good day. We enjoyed checking out new places and revisiting some places we go to often. Then we went and checked in to our hotel. Once we got settled Adam picked up some take out for us. Eating take out is nothing like eating at the restaurant!

On Sunday we slept until 9AM. I can’t tell you the last time I slept in that late! I am usually such an early bird! We got around and went to brunch at Fox Run Vineyards. They had the most amazingly beautiful spread! Everything looked like it was from a magazine! All of the food was delicious! They had a pastry and yogurt bar that you could go up to anytime to get food, and then you ordered your main meal with the waitress. We both had eggs benedict with crab cakes. We each got two tickets for their blanc de blanc which you could have plain or you could have cranberry juice or orange juice added to. This was the second event we have gone to at this winery and they do not disappoint!

After brunch, the rain had started to turn into snow. We decided it would be best to head home. I’m glad we left when we did. Once we got home, we already had a couple inches of snow.

Marathon Training Week 4:

Monday-Rest Day
Tuesday- 6.1 Miles- Treadmill
Wednesday- 6.5 Miles- Outside
Thursday- 4.4 Miles- Treadmill
Friday-Rest Day
Saturday- 4 Miles-Treadmill
Sunday- Rest Day

 

Overcoming Sciatic Pain

For the past week and a half I have battled sciatic pain, known as sciatica. Sciatica is known as a common pain from the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve extends from the lower back down each leg. My pain is on the right side of my lower back and goes down my right leg.  Have you ever experienced this pain before? If so, what did you do to get rid of it?

They say some symptoms of sciatica are: lower back pain, pain in the butt (literally) or leg, you can experience hip pain, a burning or tingling down the leg, a weakness, numbness or difficulty moving the leg or foot, a constant pain on one side of your butt, and a shooting pain that makes it difficult to stand up.

Have you ever experienced these symptoms and not known what might be the problem? The symptoms that are bolded are the ones I have been experiencing. When I first started running a couple years ago, I began to experience sciatica. The first time I had it, I stopped all exercise to try to rest my body and let it heal (I didn’t know what it was). One night I was experiencing a large amount of pain from my lower back going right down my leg. It hurt so badly I couldn’t sleep. At about 3AM I finally had enough and asked Adam to take me to the emergency room. The pain was so intense and I had no clue what it was. At the emergency room, they were very familiar with what I was experiencing. They gave me two shots of pain medicine, suggested I see a chiropractor, prescribed some pain medication and sent me on my way. We were there less than an hour total.

The shots quickly worked to relieve my pain. However, once they wore off my pain came back. I made an appointment to see a chiropractor. I had never been to a chiropractor before and was interested to see what they could do for me. Conveniently, we have one right at the end of our street. I went three times within a two week period. I didn’t notice any change in my pain after seeing him. The chiropractor did however give me a sheet with some stretching moves to try at home. This led me to looking on YouTube to see if anyone had stretching videos I could try. I quickly found some great stretching videos for getting rid of lower back pain. It turns out there are TONS of them out there. If you do experience this pain I highly suggest you find a video that works for you and do it often! Some videos are only 10 minutes long and some are 45 minutes or more. Find one or two that work for you and save them. My favorite ones are Fitness Blender and Yoga for Sciatica. I have also done other videos from those same people an enjoy them.

Whenever I get sciatic pain it is always so difficult to keep moving and going on with my days. All I want to do it rest it until it gets better. I have found the more I sit or lay down stiffer and more sore my pain becomes. The past week and a half I have been doing a lot of stretching both by myself and with YouTube videos. I have been in a lot of pain during my runs, but just keep powering through. Taking Advil before a run definitely helps, but it wears off quickly.

Luckily today I am feeling a lot better!

Birthday Weekend

Last weekend was my birthday weekend and the weather was beautiful! Saturday I saw it get up as high as 58 degrees and Sunday I saw it get to 55 degrees! I was loving the weather and wanted to be outside as much as possible!

Friday was my birthday and that night Adam and I went to see the Syracuse Crunch play the Binghamton Senators. My work gave away over 200 tickets for the game to local fire fighters and we were lucky enough to get tickets as well! It was a lot of fun!

After the game, we went to a local bar called Wolff’s Biergarten to hang out. It is a German style pub. They offer a free boot of beer on your birthday. The boot holds 2 liters of beer! They fill it with Hofbrau Munchen Original which is a pale lager. You do not have to finish the boot in order to get it for free, you do have to give them your license and a $40 deposit incase you break the glass or try to steal the boot. Adam and I shared the boot while we watched some basketball and played a couple games of darts. I managed to win both games of darts we played! It took about 3 hours to finish the beer. The male record time for finishing the boot is 17 seconds! The female record is about 2 minutes and 41 seconds. I cannot imagine drinking it that quickly!! The bartender showed us the video of the guy who drank it in 17 seconds and he didn’t even have any beer dripping down his chin!

    

     

    

I must say, that was the latest I had been up in a very long time!! We got home about 1:30 AM and attempted to watch Top Chef, but mostly fell asleep on the couch. 🙂

Saturday morning Adam made crepes! They were delicious! They were filled with whipped cream, strawberries, kiwi, blueberries and raspberries.

    

 

We went for a 7 mile run at the canal with Porter. It was a beautiful day for a run and it felt so great to get out and get some fresh air! It was nice to see quite a few people out enjoying the nice weather.

We went to Clark Reservation State Park and did some hiking. Clark Reservation is a glacial lake with lots of amazing rocks you walk across, rugged cliffs and a 175 ft overlook. This was our first time at the reservation and I look forward to going again soon! There are lots of trails to choose from. Most of the trails are pretty short, but you can link them together and make longer hiking trails. We hiked about 2 miles altogether.

    

After hiking, we went to 1911 Distillery in Lafayette, NY to have a drink, listen to some live music and enjoy the view! It was very relaxing listening to the music. I had a Moscow Mule made with their house made vodka. They use their locally grown apples to ferment and make into vodka. Adam had one of their hard ciders. Both were delicious! The view was amazing! In the fall, we usually pick apples at their orchard.

    

We had dinner at Notch 8 Cafe & Bar. I loved the atmosphere there! The décor was really neat. I had the Roasted Beet Salad with mixed baby greens, feta, grilled apple/cranberry compote, roasted thin beet slices with an IPA vinaigrette. Adam had the Big Caboose Burger which had black angus ground beef, pulled pork, fried egg, crispy onion, smoked bacon jam, cheddar and lettuce with sweet potato fries. Both were delicious! Adam’s burger was very big and juicy! I won’t lie, I ended up liking his meal a little better. 🙂

    

After dinner we went over to our friend’s house and played Cards Against Humanity. There were about 10 of us playing! By the time the winner got 10 black cards, I had only gotten 1!

We went home and had some of the Caramel Macchiato Cheesecake Adam made for my birthday. It was amazing!

Sunday we ran 4.2 miles outside. Then we showered up and went to Ithaca to hike one of the waterfalls. It was another gorgeous day! A couple years ago Adam and I discovered that Ithaca has many waterfalls in the area with great hiking trails around them to explore. We are trying to get to them all. Sunday we brought Porter along and hiked Potter’s Fall on Six Mile Creek. Most of the hike was easy going walking trails. There were a few parts that were challenging and muddy. There were so many amazing views along the trail!

    

    

    

    

Afterwards, we met my mom and aunt at Viva Taqueria for an early dinner. The food was fantastic! I had the Chicken Mole Burrito. It was very filling and delicious! I would definitely go there again.

We had a busy weekend! We stayed up much later than usual for us each night and was able to get a lot of great exercise in due to the amazing weather. So we went home to relax for the night!

 

 

 

Week 2 Marathon Training + Running Fuel

Yesterday officially wrapped up week 2 of my marathon training. I was so happy that we had great weather in upstate New York for January! I was able to run mostly outside.

Monday- 3.1 Miles on the treadmill
Tuesday- 6.3 Miles on the treadmill
Wednesday- 6.1 Miles outside
Thursday- 5.5 Miles outside
Friday-Rest Day
Saturday- 7.0 Miles outside
Sunday- 4.2 Miles outside

On Wednesday I was able to run with Adam and Porter in the morning before work. It is hard getting up so early, but knowing you can have a family run AND get your workout completed before work is very motivating for me! When I wait to run after work, I’m more likely to find excuses throughout the day not to work out.

About 3 miles into our run, I tripped and fell. I scraped up my hand and both knees. Luckily, I was wearing pants, two layers of long sleeve shirts and gloves so my skin was mostly protected. The areas that hit the ground stung for about ten minutes after. I still managed to make it another 3.1 miles. I felt so good for not giving up! When I got home I made sure to clean the cuts well.

On Thursday, my right knee that got the worse of it was pretty sore to walk and run on. It was a tiny bit swollen. I really wanted to keep it moving and not let it get stiff. I ran a lot slower that morning.

Friday was my rest day. However, I walked on the treadmill in the morning and I took Porter for a walk after work. It was a pretty relaxing day- workout wise. It’s good to take rest days, although, sometimes I get into the groove and don’t want to.

Saturday, we went to the Erie Canal for our run! It was a beautiful day. It got up to 58 degrees! I could have ran all day! But we had other things we wanted to do, so we capped it at 7 miles.

Last week I added sit-ups to my morning routine. I did 45 regular crunches, and 45 side crunches on each side. My stomach felt it by mid-week! On Friday, Porter wanted to help me with my sit-ups. He’s too cute!

All week I was loving eating oatmeal for breakfast! This bowl has oatmeal, Chocolate P2B, chia seeds, about a tablespoon of maple syrup, 1/4 C unsweetened vanilla coconut milk and bananas.

We roasted a pumpkin earlier in the week, so some of my oatmeal had, pumpkin, chia seeds, cinnamon, about a tablespoon of maple syrup, and 1/4 C unsweetened vanilla coconut milk. Both were delicious and very filling! What do you like to eat after a hard workout?

Finding motivation

Hope you are all having a good week!

As we continue through the week and head towards the weekend I keep thinking of my marathon training that we’re starting on Monday. Mondays are actually rest days according to the schedule, so it will really start on Tuesday. I am hoping that we have warmer weather and can start running outside for most of the runs. Yesterday the wind was crazy and I wanted no part in being outside! It was garbage/recycling day in our neighborhood and when I got home from work there were garbage cans and recycling bins all over the road and in people’s yards.

On New Years Day, Adam and I had an awesome run outside! The sun was shining and we completed 8 miles together. Porter loved getting exercise with us! He is so cute, sometimes he will run right next to us and look up at us from time to time. I’m not sure if he’s checking on how we’re doing and thanking us for getting him out. I’ll go with both?

Before our run, I really didn’t feel like running on the treadmill for another day. I talked Adam into doing a “short run” outside and then if we didn’t want to continue we could finish inside. Whenever I don’t have the motivation to exercise I always tell myself that I will just do it for a shortened period of time and then if I’m not into it I will stop. The majority of the time I continue to get my full workout in rather than stopping short. I just know will feel better if I do something rather than regretting it later.

I try to change up my workouts to give myself something different to look forward to and stop myself from getting bored. In the winter in addition to running, I row and find YouTube workouts that I like. I usually do Jillian Michaels workouts on YouTube, but I have done different Zumba and yoga videos.

What are things you enjoy to stay active throughout the winter months?

Welcome!

Hello Everyone! It has been my dream for a few years now to start a blog so, I’m finally doing it!

It was about 3 years ago that I was frustrated with myself for being over weight, inactive and unhealthy. I decided to do something about it! For Christmas 2013, my husband and I gifted ourselves a Concept 2 rowing machine. My husband had enjoyed rowing for exercise in the past and I needed something I could do at my own pace to work up endurance.

That year, we set a goal to row to the Bahamas (figuratively). We mapped out the approximate amount of meters it was from Syracuse, NY to Nassau, Bahamas by water. We scheduled a cruise to the Bahamas in the early fall to celebrate our accomplishment. We hit our goal a couple weeks before we left for vacation! We were so excited for accomplishing our goal together. In addition to cooperatively reaching our goal, I lost 30 pounds in the process and had a yearning to continue my journey with healthy eating and exercise.

After a few months of rowing under my belt, my husband and I were walking our dog (Porter) and my brother’s dog (Yeti) who we were dog sitting at the time. We were trying ever so hard to tire our energetic young pups out! After a while of walking, I asked my husband if he was interested in attempting to run with the dogs. I had never been a runner in my life, but thought it might be worth a try. I truly surprised myself when we ran over a mile that day! It went by very quickly and I was excited to run again and again after that day increasing my mileage as I continued to run.

The next year, I began training for my first half marathon. I was hooked on running and couldn’t get enough of it! For Christmas 2014 my husband and I gifted ourselves a treadmill so that we could continue to run in the winter. Since then, I have run a few 10Ks, 2 half marathons and one full marathon. This May, I will be running my second full marathon in Buffalo, NY.

As I continue my journey with exercise, I have learned the importance of properly fueling my body to prepare it for all of the challenges I put it through. I am looking forward to sharing with you my journey as I continue this healthy life style I have learned to love!

Please feel free to comment and share your experiences with me!