Not unlike the majority of the country, our little town was hit with massive amounts of snow and freezing temperatures last week. And if you know me, you know my sun-loving-self was not too excited about the winter weather. Aside from moving my marathon-training-long-run indoors, I won’t complain about the blizzard too much because I know so many other people had it much much worse. I will admit, the thick fluffy snow photographs beautifully.
Last week I committed to a marathon and the weekly long runs that come with training. Sunday morning I woke up to at least 8 inches of snow and dark grey skies. I’d like to say I’m hardcore enough to run through the blizzard…..but I’m a snowbird at heart and take full advantage of the gym when temperatures drop below 50. The treadmill awaited my eleven-miler. First of all, I haven’t run in the double-digits since September, so I had a little bit of pre-run nerves. But the first step to surviving 85 minutes on a stationary machine:
How to survive treadmill long runs:
- First of all, set the incline to at least 1.0% grade. This helps mimic running on land rather than a moving belt.
- Play with the speed! I always start out at a comfortable speed, but bump it up depending on what song is playing. Alternating your speed also mimics running outside when a machine is not regulating pace for you. For some reason when Masterpiece by Jessie J comes on, I hit up, up, up to 8.5 mph because that is my jam.
- Speaking of music…Fresh new playlist made the time flyyyyyyy:
- Basically the entire new Florida Georgia Line album Anything Goes
- Invincible and Someone by Kelly Clarkson
- Goodbye from Who is Fancy (<— love that name)
- Centuries from Fall Out Boy (not a huge FOB fan but this is a power song!)
- I’m Gonna Show You Crazy by Bebe Rexha
- Let Go For Tonight by Foxes
- Mid-run fuel in the form of Tangerine Sport Beans from Jelly Belly for caffeine (studies say you should have mid-run fuel for any outting longer than 60 minutes)
- Two nights before I had watched an inspirational running movie, which I pictured the race scenes from (runner-nerd alert).
- A bit of an odd one…I like to do math during my runs! Since the speed on a treadmill is set to “miles per hour” and I like to think in terms of “minutes per mile,” I spend a lot of time converting different paces in my head and estimating what my marathon time would be. Buuuut if mathematics tends to exhaust you, I don’t recommend this one. ;)
- Thinking about breakfast and/or dessert.
- Looking out the window at this view and appreciating my warm little fitness room!
And that is how I got through 85 lonely minutes on a treadmill in a blizzard. Forecasts show 50s for this weekend, hallelujah!
What is the longest you’ve run on a treadmill & what songs do I need to add for this weekend’s playlist?!
Before I go on about my long run energy experiment let’s rewind a little bit…. we passed a major holiday here!
Our Thanksgiving meal was typical for this family: all brand-new recipes that were a hit!
Whole Wheat Sweet Potato Biscuits with Cranberry Jam from Caroline @ Chocolate & Carrots
Healthy Mashed Sweet Potatoes
(of course) Turkey
& a not-at-all-healthy Pumpkin Caramel Pecan Cheesecake with Gingerbread Crust for dessert
YUM. I’m still full. (That’s a lie. I’m always hungry. ha.)
Now onto Christmas…Happy Holidays!
While the crazies were out Black Friday shopping, I opted for a morning run with my best guy friend from high school!
Cardio > Sales (blasphemy coming from a 20 year old girl, I know.)
We had a KILLER run we call “Kingdom Loop.” The first 4 miles are a gradual incline, until you get to Kingdom Dr. Then its a steep steep climb to the top, about 3/4 mile. You know the hill gets serious when the conversation stops ;) After that it’s a downhill coast to home, a decent start at working off this monster of Thanksgiving (and the next day, and the next day’s….) dessert:
My marathon training plan is roughly following this plan from Boston Athletic Association: Beginner 16 week program. (I fast-forwarded to week 9).
This morning I cranked out my 15-miler first thing before it got too hot (yes “too hot” in December….SoCal probs.) With my dad by my side, of course!
I started a little bit of an experiment. On the actualy Marathon Day (50 days and counting!) I will be needing some edible energy on the run to keep my glucose levels up and active. My mom hooked it up on her last trip to Sports Authority and bought me just about every type of energy product on the shelf.
- Jelly Belly Sport Beans (4 different flaves)
- Clif Shot Bloks
- GU energy gels (regular and Roctane) *Bonus for this one, there’s Peanut Butter & Espresso!!!!
- Power Gel energy gels
- GU Chomps energy chews
- Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews
I’m starting my experimenting now so I know what works best by January 19th! Today I took along Honey Stinger Organic Energy Chews in Pomegranate Passion (I promise I’m not affiliated with any of the companies and this is not some cheesy sales pitch!)
- Tasted delicious and fruity
- “Organic” (if you’re into that sort of thing)
- No stomach ache
- You have to eat 10 for one serving…..considering I’ll be needing 4-5 servings, I don’t want to be eating 50 chews!)
- Non-resealable package
- Says “contains protein & fiber” on package…… 1 stinkin’ gram! That barely counts.
I liked the flavor of the Stinger chews and they didn’t have any horrible side effects but the fact that I would be eating dozens of them for energy doesn’t sound appealing. Next week I’ll try out a Gu or PowerGel. One gulp and DONE. To be continued…