Resolution Check-In

Wow, how is the first month of 2013 already done? I still haven’t gotten used to writing 2013 instead of 2012 yet…I have a feeling this year is going to fly. With the start of a new month, I figured it’d be a good time to check back in and see how I’m doing with my New Year’s resolutions.

My big January focus was core and I had a goal of completing my P90X Ab Ripper workout five times per week. I beat my own expectations on this one, getting through the Ab Ripper workout every day last month. Going back to December I’m up to 34 straight days beating my previous longest streak of 31. It’s becoming a normal part of my daily routine now, so most days I just get up and do it without thinking or stressing too much about it. I’m hoping to keep this up as I know a stronger core will only make everything else I do easier.

Getting healthy was another resolution for the year and I’m off to a great start. I’m officially done with physical therapy, and am on my way to getting stronger. I’m sticking with my strength and stretching routines so I give myself the best possible chance to not end up injured again.

Drinking less soda was also on the list and I’ve had good weeks and bad weeks on this one. I started out the year strong telling myself I wouldn’t drink any soda Monday through Thursday. I made it through the first week and all the way through Wednesday of the following week. It probably hasn’t helped that I’ve been getting up much earlier than normal and exercising in the morning a lot more than I used to, leaving me a bit sleepy when my midday craving for a caffeine boost hits. After several early mornings that second week, I was up even earlier for a 4:30 wake up call to make a group run that Thursday morning, and I caved at lunch giving into my soda craving and falling back into my soda-a-day routine for the most part after that. I’ve tried drinking diet soda since I hate the taste so much thinking that I’d stop drinking it if I didn’t like it, but I just started to get used to the taste…yuck! Oh well, I’ll try again this month!

I obviously can’t realize my big goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon until my October marathon, but getting back my speed is going to be my big February focus. I’ve built a great base of fitness over the last five weeks or so completing mostly easy paced runs and a lot of cross training. Now it’s time to crank it up a notch. My goal for this month is to complete two speed sessions a week whether it’s at the track, running hill intervals or tempo runs.

Smiling after getting home from last week's track workout - need to remember that post workout feeling so I keep getting out there for speed sessions!

Smiling after getting home from last week’s track workout – need to remember that post workout feeling so I keep getting out there for speed sessions!

How are you doing on your resolutions? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Footprints: Monday Morning Recap

Going strong! I ran a total of 14.25 miles this week and spent a lot of time at the spin studio.

Here’s the training breakdown by day:

Monday: Spin Class

Tuesday: Track Workout – 2 mile warm-up; 6X400m repeats with a 100m jog recovery; 1.5 mile cool down

Wednesday: Spin Class

Thursday: 4 miles easy – I ran home from work Thursday night completely overdressed since I was expecting freezing temps and snow, but instead it was completely dry and over 40 degrees.

Friday: Spin Class – Body Ride

Saturday: 4 miles easy – Great weather for a Saturday morning run through Georgetown along Rock Creek Parkway and back over the Memorial Bridge past the Iwo Jima Memorial. All was great except for a spill I took near the end ripping up my favorite winter running gloves…better them than my hands though.

Sunday: 1.25 miles easy on the treadmill to warm up for a lower body workout. Spin Class – Body Ride

Speed Session

One of my favorite parts of running is hitting the track for a speed workout. Some think I’m crazy for this, but I love the feeling of pushing myself as hard and fast as I can around the track. I’m always exhausted at the end of a track session, but I also get a rush that’s not usually matched by my other runs.

I stopped speed workouts even before starting physical therapy so I can’t even remember when my last trip up to the track was, but I started back up today. It was cold, dark and rainy when I pulled up to the track before 6 this morning, but I was excited to be there. I’ve only started adding speed workouts to my training in recent years and noticed huge gains when sticking to them regularly. Today’s track session came after three weeks of easy running, and will be my only speed session this week since I don’t want to do too much too soon. Next week I plan to start adding in a weekly tempo run as well to help pick up my pace and get back to where I was at…or even faster!

On tap for today was a 2 mile warm-up, 6 400 meter repeats with a 100 meter jog recovery and a 1.5 mile cool down. It wasn’t anything too hard or intense, but it felt great to be cranking up the pace again and pushing myself to new levels.

Do you like speed workouts or just endure them because you know they make you better? What’s the toughest track workout you’ve completed? Let me know in the comments!