Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Whole Foods and Plant Based Diet

So do you remember in my last post how I told you I just watched the documentary called Forks Over Knives? Well after watching it Scott and I had decided that we wanted to make a change in our diet.  First I must say that Scott and I try hard to eat healthy most of the time.  Our health is extremely important to us. Forks Over Knives shows you the facts about meat in our diets and how it is directly connected to a higher risk of heart disease, cancer and many other things.  It will really change your prospective on what you eat.

Scott and I love animals but have always been meat and dairy eaters.  We stuck to mostly chicken and fish because I am not a huge fan of red meat but don't get me wrong, a juicy fillet or lamb chop every once and a while did sound pretty good.  So making the change to a whole foods plant based diet aka a vegan diet was going to be a pretty big change for us. 

We just started this week! Yesterday to be exact. I love my veggies but Scott is pretty particular on his veggie intake.  Needles to say this is important to him so he is trying harder.  He even had udon noodle soup yesterday with tofu, seaweed and green onions!  I was super proud.

I bought 2 books that were recommended to help me get on the right track. I also made a menu of what we will be eating this week.  I still haven't figured out lunch for Scott yet so he is on his own in the city during lunch break.  He will either have to stick with soups or hunker down and order a salad :)

One of the perks to living in such a big city is that there are a lot of vegans and vegetarians so I was happily surprised when I was at the grocery store to find lots of things I could eat.

We have been good about eating oatmeal or cream of wheat made with Almond milk in the morning and for our first vegan dinner last night we had tostadas. I got the recipe from the book below and just made a couple of adjustments.  It was a delicious dinner followed by grahams and dark chocolate peanut butter (don't worry no dairy.)

Small corn tortillas baked in the oven until crispy
Refried beans
I started with 2 and then ate 2 more and some chips.
I eat a lot!

Here are the two books I bought.  Both so far have been very helpful. In the Becoming Vegan book it has a list of the most common questions that vegans are asked and the answers to respond! Very helpful!  And what I love about The McDougall Quick and Easy Cookbook is that it doesn't require any weird ingredents and all the recipes take around 15 mins to cook.  This is great since I like to only leave myself 30 mins to get dinner ready each night.

Because we are making a huge change in our diets we decided to easy into it and try our best.  Example, we are going to eat Mexican with some friends Friday night.  We may or may not have cheese on something :) We don't want to be difficult and we still want to enjoy going out to dinner with friends etc so we will continue to make the best decisions we can moving forward but not get too upset if there is a road bump.

This weeks dinner menu.
Tuesday- Creamy Spinach Fettuccine (made with silken tofu)
Wednesday- Polenta with Veggies
Thursday- Bowtie pasta with Bean sauce
Friday- Mexican dinner out
Saturday- Spicy Mongolian Noodles

For lunch today I am having a spinach and avocado salad with tempeh and tomatoes.

My workouts.
Yesterday I decided to do NOTHING!  It was great!
Today- Ran 8
Wed- 5-8
Thurs- 8
Friday- Xtrain
Sat 10-12

I am open to new recipes and ideas so if you have any good ones please share!!


PS Question: Where are you going to get your protein from???
      Answer:  Soyfoods, Whole Wheat Bread, White Bread, Oatmeal, Lentils, Soybeans, Black, Garbanzo, Kidney and Pinto Beans, and many many other whole food items that are in our new diet!

Oh and has anyone started their Christmas list yet??
I did... I really want a TREADMILL!!  Any recommendations on a good one? I managed to find a nice little spot in my apt where I can put it.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Jumping the Gun

It has been 15 days since I ran the NYC marathon and during this time I have been thinking a lot about what exactly went wrong.  I was positive that the Run Less Run Faster plan was going to help me reach my goal so I was pretty devastated when I came in far from it.  Also I don't want to forget to mention that during these 15 days I have been enjoying myself immensely.  My parents were just here visiting with my Grandma who has not been here since 1946!  We ate, ate, did some sight seeing and ate some more.  It was GREAT!!!

So let me break it down....  One- I chose to use the 3:40 speed work program and then use the 3:30 long distance program.  This was a mistake.  I needed to pick one time and stick with it.  Two- Even though I was using the faster 3:30 program for long distance I was running them even faster than what was given.  Mistake! Three- My arrogance! I thought I knew better than the Run Less Run Faster authors on what I could handle and what I was capable of doing therefore I became EXTREMELY burnt out.  By the time the race hit all I could think about was ugh!  Let's just get this dam race over.  I do not feel like running. Which resulted in a 4:06 marathon.

Now let me get to the point of the title to this post.  If you would like to see the effects of jumping the gun when the race starts... well here it is.  My splits.  As you can see after mile 1(which was uphill) I quickly jumped to a 7:22 pace.  Ahhh not 8:00 which was what I was aiming for. Miles 2-7 were all under 8. So by the time the 8th mile was over I was feeling way tired.  Then as you can see my splits were all over the place.  One of my weaknesses with running is keeping a consistent pace.  I am pretty terrible at it and should have focused more on that during my training.  I also felt like I was going up and down, up and down the entire race so I posted my elevation as well.  As you can see I don't climb a whole lot but it is up and down.  This added to my tiredness in the end.

What have I learned from all this....  STICK TO THE TRAINING PLAN.  

So to redeem myself and have a little fun I signed up for the GOOFY with my sister Jen!  I seriously cannot wait.  I don't even care about what time I am going for, all I want to do is run a fun race.  Enjoy the distance.  Enjoy the scenery and crowds.  Plus is will be so fun to have Jen run with me.  She is an expert when it comes to numbers and time so she will be the perfect pace partner.  Oh and I told her that she can wear her watch and I am not going to. (I may change my mind later tho. Ha!)

What have I been doing for exercise in the mean time?  Well I am back to 4 days a week.  Last week because my family was here I only got in 3 days but this week I am going for 4.

This is an example
Monday- 8
Tuesday- Xtrain
Wednesday - 6-8
Thursday - 8
Friday- Xtrain
Saturday - 10 (I will add 2 miles each Long run getting up to 18 miles two weeks before the race and then I will taper)

I plan to run up the bridge hard for strength and work up to running comfortably 7:45-8:00 miles. Right now I am around 8:20 because I am still recovering from my last race and I don't want to push it to hard.

So that's it! Long post but had a lot to explain!

Here is to Goofy or BUST!! (Ps I better not bust cuz I am seriously considering the RnR marathon in DC this March :) Who's with me?!


Oh and I just watched Forks Over Knives.  Post coming soon about my new diet plan. :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Hardest Plan EVER

Hi all, This is Jen here. Long time no blog. I have been out of my mind lately trying to keep up with all the happenings around my house. But, I have really been wanting to blog to let you know how my RLRF plan has been going for me.

here is my thought. IT IS SO HARD! Although it may be easy to assume this plan is doable because you "only" run "3 days a week" I say don't assume as much.

This plan is hard, here are my majors reasons why:

1. You still need to for sure cross train to some extent on the non-running days which may seem easier then it is. Sometimes it is easier to just go outside and go for an easy run, no planning involved. But when you need to get motivated to either get your rear to the gym or dig out your old home workout video it can be a chore.

2. All of the runs are very very pace specific. There is no real room for an off day or a not feeling it phase. I have had a little of both and did my best to suck it up and get through it but then the following week it is hard running again, and again. There is no room for running where you aren't looking at your watch every .25 mile or so......

So those are my 2 main reason why this plan is hard.

Here is why the plan is good.
- I am getting faster. Here is a good indicator of what this plan has done for my short distance so far.
Back in May I ran a 10k at a 7:48 pace. That pace at that time for me was tough. Just the other day I went out my door and ran 5 miles (I could have gone 6.2) at a 7:20 pace. It felt comfortably-hard and was a great indicator to me how much I have progressed as a runner with this plan. Also, during my speed sessions typically I have been coming in faster then I need to and with the minimal recover this plan gives you (and I mean minimal) I have been able to keep it up despite the fact that sometimes after the last repeat I lay down on the track and wonder what the hell I am doing, and remind myself I choose to do this!!!

I am still waiting until my marathon on Dec. 4th to see how this all is going to play out for the long distance. Will I be able to run my goal of a 3:40 or will I be able to go faster... or will I BONK? I have no idea. All of those thoughts have come and gone through my mind at least 1000 times.

Anywhoo, as the marathon gets closer I am getting very excited to see how this is all gonna go and wanted to give an opinion of the plan and hear if anyone else feels the same way.

Who has done the RLRF plan and seen it through?

What were your results?

Do you still use this plan or something more traditional?
Although this training has been HARD it has also been very fun and I had made some good memories with my buds.

Alison and Amber before a run.... early in the morning in the dark.....

Tara in her car getting ready to go out for a run early in the morning in the dark......

This is just a new little treat I discovered that is DELICIOUS! Roasted sweet potato sandwich with grilled red onion and jack cheese. try it. it is good =)

P.S. This may or may not be a hint as to wear some of the ATTrio may or may not be running their next race ;)

Happy Running -Jen

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Thank You!!

I just wanted to do a little post and say THANK YOU for all of your wonderful comments.  It really did help me feel better.  A week has gone by and I can say that I am already itching to run.  I went for a super slow 2 miles on Thursday and I am about to head out to do a slow 5.  All without my watch!!

Oh and I may or may not have signed up for another race in the not too distant future :)  I mean I couldn't really let NYCM be the finish to my hard trained running season could I?

More to come on that later!

Yep I just swiped a couple from Brightroom.  No biggy right?

Have a great weekend everyone!


Monday, November 7, 2011

NYC Marathon Recap

Well I didn't reach my hard trained goal of a 3:30-3:40 marathon.  In fact I was far from it.  Everyone has their day and yesterday unfortunately was not mine.  I finished at 4:06:37, my slowest marathon yet not counting the marathon I ran/walked one.  What happened?  I think it was a blend of different things that did not let me do my best.  Here is the breakdown....

This was me headed out at 4:30 so I could make it on the 5:45 Staten Island Ferry.  Even though I got an extra hour with daylight savings I was still tired and did not sleep well.  I think I finally feel asleep around 11 and woke up once at 3:30 and then again at 4 to get up.  After the ferry we took a nice and warm comfy bus to the village.  It was even at that point I was thinking how nice it would be to stay on the bus.  I was not looking forward to running.

Went with the black nails that made me happy whenever I looked at them!

I arrived at my village when the sun was barely coming up.  I would say around 6:15-6:30 It was chilly and I am so glad that I bought throw away clothes at good will to keep me warm.  They were also giving out hot chocolate, tea, coffee etc.  Dunkin Donuts gave out hats so everyone sitting around had on an orange and pink hat on which was pretty funny.  Then I began to wait..... and wait, during this time I kept thinking this will all be over soon.  Not very uplifting I know but to be honest from the beginning  I was dreading running this thing.

This was on the ferry ride over.

When I left at 4:30 I ate a piece of Peanut Butter toast and then at 8:50 I ate 4 graham crackers.  Hardly drank any water and did drink a big scoop of caffeine.  Mistake!   Finally made my way to the start at 9:15 and at 10:10 the gun went off!  I was feeling pretty good the first 4 miles expect I was so thirsty and my mouth was so so dry.  I knew then this was going to be a tough run.  I was staying around my 8:00 pace.  And at mile 7 a sever side ache set in and I think it was due to dehydration.  I had some friends that would be cheering me on around mile 11 so already early in the race I was thinking just make it to them and see what happens after that.

Saw my friends, that really helped but as I ran past my street I so desperately just wanted to go home. I really didn't know how I was going to make it to the finish.  At mile 12 I stopped to walk, drink water and eat my shot blocks.  I was trying to eat them every 4 miles.  It was at mile 12 that I began to feel dizzy.   From 12 on I was feeling super light headed and concentrated on not falling over.  I would run then walk, run then walk.  At mile 17 I saw snowflake sparkles, but I knew I had to finish.  I was at a 8:45 pace.  Mile 21-24 was super hard.  It was down 5th avenue but I really felt like I was running up.  It was at a slope up the entire 3 miles.  Finally into the park and just past 24, I stopped eating shot blocks at 20.  I couldn't think about eating anything else because I felt so out of it.  

After mile marker 24 a guy was giving out salt, without thinking I grabbed it and took it down not realizing that I would not have water for an entire mile.  During that mile I wanted to throw up!  I was really feeling sick at this point.  Finally mile 25 and I drank water!  I was at a 9:22 pace and my last mile was at 9:25.  

I was so happy that it was OVER!!  I really can't believe that I finished.  I really really wanted to quit.  Not to mention that it was super crowed the entire race and after you cross the finish line you are shoulder to shoulder with finishers waiting to get their medal, then through the photo line and then the blanket and finally the food bag about 200 meters later.  All I could think about was getting some water.  I was so thirsty.  The worst part was that you had to walk what felt like another mile to pick up my bag and get out of the park.  I felt like I was being herded like a cow.  It was awful!

Finally I met up with Scott and we went and got some food!!  I am not going to lie, when I saw him I broke down in tears.  All of that hard work felt worthless.  Those hard track workouts and tempo runs.  My training was brutal so I could have a great race but when my race was worse I felt like a failure.  I am not sure why things happen the way they do but in the end I am just happy that I finished.  I guess this means I will have to run another one to reach my goals.  


After I ate we headed home so I could just hang out with Ivan on the couch.  I am taking that entire week off and maybe two before I put my running shoes on again.  And the next time I go I am NOT taking my watch!  I have decided after this race I am going back to the days when I ran without a watch.  I felt like a better and stronger runner when I was not looking down at my pace every mile.  Those were my best runs and I want to get back to that.

PS I failed to mention that my feet started hurting around mile 9 and were throbbing the last 10 miles.  I am NOT wearing CEP socks again for a race!  The bottoms of my feet right under my pinkie toes are killing me and I lost another toe nail which means on my right foot I have two toes with no nails!  YUCK!

Cheers everyone I finished!  Here is to another and BETTER race!!


Friday, November 4, 2011

I'm Ready!

Did my last tempo run today!!  Woot!  1 mile easy, 2 mile @ 7:48 3 mile @ 7:42!  I am not sure what is more exciting, finishing training or running the marathon?  I guess I will find out when it is all over Sunday.  To celebrate I had a spinach, banana, chia seed protein shake.  It was oh so good!

And I figured out what I am going to wear!  In honor of New York style I am wearing all black.  My black Lulu tank with my black Nike compression shorts, black CEP compression socks and some arm bands that I will rip off as soon as I am hot.  Oh and a black Sparkly Soul headband.  I will have my black spi belt and I am getting my nails done tomorrow.  Not sure if I will go with black but I want to do something fun.  My shoes are not black either but that is ok :)

 Ivan is giving my shoes a little good luck chewing!

These are some nail ideas I am thinking about.  Not necessarily the color but what do you think?

I am going to try and meet up with HRG and Skinny Runner either before or after the race. 

Now I just need to go and pick up some throw away sweats and sweatshirt to keep me warm before the race starts.

So what do you think about the nails?  Which is your fav??

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