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Tuesday 3 miles

So after feeling a slight improvement running 3 miles on Tuesday I ran 7 miles today and FINALLY felt like the runner I’m used to.

7 miles

7 miles

I’ll never be fast but today I felt pep in my step. My leg turnover felt normal (NO MORE SHUFFLING!), my gait felt normal and my breathing felt normal and no side stitches. I averaged 11:15 miles and was pretty consistent for all 7 miles.

What do I think is the reason for finally having a better run?

1. I slept 2 extra hours on Monday and 1 extra hour on both Tuesday and Wednesday
2. I stayed away from artificial sweeteners and processed foods for the last few days.
3. I got new sneakers! (Brooks Ghost 8s)
4. The temps have been a little cooler
5. I took ibuprofen and walked for a mile with Duncan this morning before running

new kicks!

new kicks!

OK let’s discus #5 shall we? I have been suffering with some general back pain since the end of April. When the pain first arrived I thought I slept wrong and hoped it would go away in a few days. Well it didn’t. It comes and goes in waves and the actual pain center migrates. Sometimes it’s the sciatic nerve, other times the small of my back, sometimes it radiates to the front of my hips to the point I think i’m having issues with my ovaries!

I was trying to relieve my back pain last night. He was obviously quite comfortable

I was trying to relieve my back pain last night. He was obviously quite comfortable

Anyway, this morning while I was still in bed and waiting for the alarm to go off, the pain was this constant dull ache and I just couldn’t get comfortable. I finally got up and took 2 ibuprofen. Then I grabbed the dog and we headed to the park for a walk.

6:45am walk with the doodle and my very much needed coffee

6:45am walk with the doodle and my very much needed coffee

Both the ibuprofen and the walk did wonders and the back started feeling great. And as a side-effect, my achy sore legs felt great too. I think this was one of the reasons I felt so much better running today.

celebrating my good run with some relaxing in the grass

celebrating my good run with some relaxing in the grass

I didn’t carry a water bottle but was happy to hit up this water fountain about 1/2 way through.

hydration station

hydration station

I’m meeting my running friends on Saturday morning for a long run. I’m aiming for 17 while they are going to cover about 23. We’re running most of this along the NYC Marathon route which is key! I’m feeling confident with some good sleep tonight and tomorrow night I’ll make it through Saturday’s run just fine. Not to mention having great company!

Whew!

So what’s new with you? Tell me one thing you’re happy about and one thing you’re frustrated with.

Hope you’ve all had a wonderful weekend. I have looming deadlines for some freelance work that I must get to but I wanted to at least give you a little recap of my weekend, including my slowest training run ever!

I spent Saturday and Sunday on Long Island, NY with Mr. SOTSS visiting with some of his family. Saturday morning we walked with his mom and of course the pooches in a beautiful park by her home. After that Mr. SOTSS and I drove out to Shelter Island which is an island in between the north and south forks of Long Island to spend time with his dad and his dad’s wife on their sailboat.

Waiting for Mr. SOTSS' dad to come out to get us with the dingy and take us to the sailboat.

Waiting for Mr. SOTSS’ dad to come out to get us with the dingy and take us to the sailboat.

sand, water, boardwalks, blue skies, and my honey

sand, water, boardwalks, blue skies, and my honey

We left the pooches at Mr. SOTSS' mom's when we drove out to Shelter Island. This is how they spent the day

We left the pooches at Mr. SOTSS’ mom’s when we drove out to Shelter Island. This is how they spent the day

It was so peaceful to just sit out on the boat in the marina. We caught up a bit, walked all around the island and then had dinner at a restaurant nearby.

Enjoying the day

Enjoying the day

Of course a glorious sunset on the water.

Of course a glorious sunset on the water.

At night we drove back to Mr. SOTSS’ mom’s house. Sunday was spent with his mom and her husband. First Mr. SOTSS and I walked the dogs for an hour and then his mom and her husband joined the fun. We took a ride out to Robert Moses State Park where you can walk to the Fire Island Lighthouse and then continue to the National Park section which connects to a small town called Kismet.

I swear I didn't use any filters. The sky was that blue

I swear I didn’t use any filters. The sky was that blue

IMG_7960There are no cars in Kismet, only walking/bike paths to get around and they have 2 restaurants. The Kismet Inn and Surf’s Out. We chose Surf’s Out.

IMG_7975

The weather was phenominal both days. I enjoy being by the water/beach so much. I’ve always lived on the East Coast and it’s just part of my life. Mr. SOTSS not only has the same love of the water but he also was quite the sailor. He got his Captain’s license and piloted a ferry from the main part of Long Island out to Fire Island. We took a fun drive through his old neighborhood and he showed me his childhood home, schools and where the ferry that he worked on was. Pretty cool!

fire-isl-map

a little map for context…

We covered about 10 miles of walking each day. Good food, good company, great views. It was a superb weekend. Mr. SOTSS dropped me off about 11 pm last night and I took a shower and jumped right into bed.

This morning I was up and out the door at 7:20am and somehow covered 15 miles but it wasn’t pretty.

15 miles DONE!

15 miles DONE!

I walked a lot and just tried to keep it together. I had a side stitch that lasted the entire time. I can’t remember the last time that happened. I stopped at a playground for a few minutes hoping this rainbow might give me some positive vibes…

I think I was delerious!

I think I was delerious!

But 3 hours and 15 minutes on my feet is what I really need to take away from this run. It’s priming me for race day. And it’s ok to have a crappy long run. I’d rather have this happen now than on race day right? While I was in nostalgia mode I decided I’d run past my old elementary school. I also ran through my favorite park.

my favorite spot in my favorite park

my favorite spot in my favorite park

My elementary school

My elementary school

Oh and how sweet is this note? It was at the register at the Dunkin Donuts by my house.

IMG_7894OK better get cracking on those deadlines….I’ll pop in toward the end of the week. Have a great one!

Have you ever just just stalled out while running? Hit the wall? Felt like your legs just couldn’t go one more step?

Do anything fun this weekend?

Hi and Happy Monday (and Happy Birthday to my friend Stef!)

Hope you all had a lovely weekend. I told you about my Saturday already. On Sunday, Mr. SOTSS and I met up with our hiking group for a hike with the pups. It was hot but luckily a little bit cooler underneath the shade of the trees and by the water.

Scales big rocks like superdoodle

Scales big rocks like SuperDoodle!

like a painting

like a painting

The very beginning of our 5 mile hike

The very beginning of our 5 mile hike.

that face!

that face!

dogs rule

Hot days mean I get to see his cute pink tongue more =)

me and my loyal companions. (photo: Papillon Photography-cbabin.smugmug.com)

It was a slow 5 miles. Took a couple of hours but we were happy we did it and felt good knowing the dogs got in one last good outing before we leave them for 5 days. On Wednesday we’re headed to another destination wedding! This one is in Jamaica. I’m really excited! I finally get to use my passport that I renewed back in 2009 and then got a puppy instead of traveling. :)

Today, I made my attempt at that 12 miler that I didn’t do on Saturday. I got a late start (it was after 9:30am) and it was HOT! 90 degrees with 75% humidity.

I am the queen of blurry self-time shots.

I am the queen of blurry self-time shots.

I ended up at 10 miles…..my first double digit run since completing the NJ Marathon back on April 27th!

double digits!

double digits!

I’m happy with 10 and not disappointed at all that I didn’t make it to 12. I was feeling the heat a lot and walking more than I was running the last mile so I figured I’d wrap it up before dying. I was on my feet for the same amount of time I would have completed 12 miles if it were cooler and my pace would have been faster so that’s good.

The good news is on the injury front. My knee is feeling so much better thanks to my intensive foam rolling. I’ve been really committed to that and it’s paying off. The hamstring is slowly getting better but wasn’t an issue at all while running. I’m aiming for 12-13 miles next Monday when I’m back from Jamaica. And while I’m away I’m just going to try for a few short runs on the beach.

I’m not going to be able to blog while away so feel free to keep tabs on me via Instagram which I’ll probably manage to post a photo here and there…and I’ll be back to blogging next week!

Have you ever been to Montego Bay, Jamaica?

Destination wedding?

Do you own a maxi dress? I just bought my first one to take with me on my trip

back

back

front

front (sorry about the weird face—i’m terrible with mirror selfies)

 

Hi and happy Sunday!

So technically my marathon training should begin tomorrow and my first long run wouldn’t be until next Sunday I started a week early because I know I’m going to have some vacations and wanted to have some cushion in my schedule.

I went out for 7 miles and while I didn’t get an early start (I think it was about 10am when I finally got my butt in gear) the heat didn’t bother me like it has during some of my recent runs.

awkward foot twist happening !

Getting ready to start…killing time taking self-timer shots while waiting on Garmin to find the darn satellite. Awkward foot twist happening!

I made a pitstop at my parents’ house twice. They’re on vacation and I needed to get the soaker hose set up to irrigate their garden. I left it going for an hour or so (basically miles 1.5 to 6.5) and then on my way back I shut the water and picked some veggies (zucchini, peppers, lettuce, basil and mint)! Oh and I saw they had some Coca Cola in the fridge. I was SO thirsty and it really hit the spot.

Refreshing swig of Coca Cola!

Refreshing swig of Coca Cola! I’m not good at the mirror camera phone shots. I never know where i should be looking =)

Zucchini and pepper

Zucchini and pepper

Lettuce and basil!

Lettuce and basil!

7 miles slow and easy

7 miles slow and easy

I already sauteéd the zucchini and pepper with the fresh basil and some olive oil and ate it for my post-run meal. I added some left over boiled potato and a grilled chicken cutlet along with some italian seasoned breadcrumbs and boy was it yummy!

IMG_6865Yesterday I worked. I took photos at a Bat Mitzvah for a friend’s daughter. It was a lovely event and the restaurant was right on the water.

Taking a little break and enjoying the view while the guests are eating.

Taking a little break and enjoying the view while the guests are eating.

This is New Jersey

This is New Jersey

After I was done working I headed over to Mr. SOTSS’ house to dogsit for his boy Chester like I did last weekend. He was out with his girls for the day down at the Jersey Shore and Chester was very happy to see me because I arrived right at his dinner time! He’s so funny. He thinks he’s a lap dog. Well maybe even a parrot. He actually sat on my shoulder!

I think he is thanking me for feeding him dinner and letting him run in the yard for a few hours.

I think he is thanking me for feeding him dinner and letting him run in the yard for a few hours.

His view from my shoulder

His view from my shoulder

This is not normal =)

This is not normal =)

While I was there I made myself a frozen adult beverage.

This is my tip!

This is my tip!

And then I headed home. I’m glad I was able to help out with Chester (and actually Duncan spent the day with him too which made me feel better too) so that Mr. SOTSS could focus on his girls and their fun-filled day. And we’ll have our own fun-filled days soon..wait till you hear about our adventures planned for next weekend?!

OK well now I’m off to enjoy the rest of my day stretch and foam roll!

Are you training for any fall races? Which one(s)?