Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Running cold, and on empty

Bear with me. I took some pics Saturday morning, but was not able to upload them until tonight. But it is very important to note that Saturday was the FIRST REAL COLD RUN of the season for me....

I needed my Yaktrax! There were patches of ice and snow along the side of the roads, first time since March! I know what you're thinking: DORK!

Needed my ear muffs!

Oh, I am so excited to discover EAR MUFFS. These ear muffs are designed for exercising - they connect in the back of the head and don't slip! Last winter I wore a Nike headband thingie that covered my ears, and while I needed my ears covered, my head would get so hot and sweaty. (Hats are a big no-no for me - even though I was so excited when I discovered one that had a ponytail hole. But I get way too hot when I run, even when the temps are in the single digits! Luckily I have never had to run in sub-zero temps, but if I do I may need to put my hat to work blah blah blah blah, oh, caught'ya, you weren't listening were you?? Tsk, tsk, and blah, blah, blah...)

Doesn't it just LOOK cold? Well, it really was.

I didn't eat anything before heading out, and I really should have. I was sooooo sluggish. It took me 11 minutes to finish my first mile. I gained some momentum during the second mile, but remained uncharacteristically sluggish the rest of the run. Even a little bite of banana would have done me some good. By the time I got home, I was in desperate need of some good carbs and protein. (And a shower, my family informed me of - which I took care of eventually, I promise.)

I made myself a green smoothie....

On the bottom are chunks of banana, orange, pineapple, and apple, some raw almonds, ground flaxseed, and some ice cubes.  On top - a few handfuls of organic kale and baby spinach. I poured on about a cup of water, pushed the smoothie button, and....

Yay, a yummy green smoothie!!  If you have never tried a green smoothie, you must. I swear, the taste of the fruit overpowers the very mild taste of the greens. It looks green, but doesn't taste it.

I had also had an egg, and got protein, veggies, and fruit in one quick, healthy meal. Light, refreshing, and satisfying - perfect after a morning run! I like salads, but honestly, I like green smoothies even more. It's like a yummy, liquid salad that tastes like fruit!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jingle Bell 5K

So Hubs, the girls, and I are all registered for the upcoming Jingle Bell 5K. This will be the first 5K race for all of us! I have run 10Ks and a half-marathon, the girls have run the 1-mile Kids' Pittsburgh Race,  but none of us have ever run a 5K! It sounds like fun. This particular race raises money for arthritis research, and everyone attaches jingle bells to their shoelaces for the race.

Sky (12) and Em (9) are accustomed to running a mile or a little more here and there with me, but neither have run the distance of a full 3 miles yet. They have both been faithfully running three times a week now in preparation for the race, and working on their distance. When Em runs, she goes all out (and the little booger is FAST) but poops out after about 3/4 of a mile. It's hard for me to teach her to save her energy to last longer. She does make it past a mile, but not without crying and wailing. (Which cracks me up, because she will NOT QUIT, even though she is very vocal and dramatic about how miserable she is. I worry that people who see us as we pass by are going to think I'm acting like a drill sergeant, but I always tell her she can stop. She never wants to!)

Sky gets the concept of saving her energy to last. Today, she ran 2.23 miles and felt great. She had planned on going 3 miles, but she got a severe cramp and needed to walk. She encounters cramping nearly every time she runs.

I can't figure it out. I don't have this problem, so it is hard for me to relate. I have looked "cramping when running" online, and still can't find anything suspicious. She doesn't gulp down huge amounts of water before running (although she will sip a little to hydrate). She doesn't eat within a half-hour of running. She starts out slowly (either a slow jog or walk) - so she has warmed up before running. Sky is the opposite of Em - she rarely complains - so when she tells me she has a "really bad cramp" I know she has a really bad cramp. Hopefully we can figure this out soon, so she can increase her mileage without too much pain!