Fitness Friday 06.17

Woah! We’re half way done with 2017, how have your fitness and health goals been treading so far?  I’ve stuck it out for the last 5-months, and I’m not stopping! It feels so good to have the routine of working out, me time to sweat it out and work on myself, to keep myself accountable.  Not to mention half-marathon training is officially starting next week, eek!
Fitness Friday 06.17 - the bee life
Let’s talk about this half marathon training… it’s been a hot second since I’ve trained for a half marathon, the mental preparation is just as hard as the physical. Honestly, I’m not looking forward to it, but I am trying to have a positive outlook and approach to it. I want to do well and stay on top of training, I’m just not feeling very confident about it. My body can’t handle the running like it used too.

But I am also curious and excited, because I have the cross training part nailed down (first time ever in all my half trainings), and I feel like the half training will help me be more accountable for my in between days to get nearly a full week of working out in, #weddingdiet.

Needless to say, there is going to be many runs (especially the hot ones) when I want to stop, not only do I need to train my legs again, but I need to train my brain to get ready for this half!

Happy Training!

Wedding Planning – Flowers

When it comes to flowers for your wedding, there are a lot of things to consider, like… first and foremost if you even want real flowers at your wedding! There are so many alternatives from realistic fake flowers to paper flowers! For me, I knew I wanted fresh flowers at our wedding. Flowers are something I’ve always dreamed about for my wedding, lots and lots of flowers… everywhere.  But as you’ll quickly come to find out, like I did, flowers are not cheap! In fact, I had a few vendors reply first stating their minimum price for an event, and it was double my budget, so I kindly responded and said thanks, but not going to work for me!

I will admit, I was a bit discouraged, and started mentally talking myself off the ledge of needing over the top florals, and starting thinking of how I would be able to simplify everything in order to at least have some flowers that I could afford.  Well upon many searches and reaching out to a few more unknown florists, I found my one.
Wedding Planning - Flowers
Here are a few tips for when you start the chats with potential florists:
1. Have pictures ready on pinterest to share with your florist! If you’re talking over the phone, try and send these ahead of time or a link to your pinterest page so you can talk through your vision live
2. Know ballpark numbers of how much you’ll need of hand bouquets, boutineers, centerpieces, ceremony space, hand corsages, etc. this of course helps with that estimating part
3. If your florist is asking you questions about your venue and ceremony space that is making you think, for example – does your church expects that the bouquets/centerpieces are donations?  You’ll want to gut check to see if other florists ask the same question, this verify’s experience and level of detail
4. Because…. if they’re considered donations you may not be able to reuse them in your venue space as additional decor or a centerpiece. Speaking of which, talk through with your florist how pieces can be used in both the ceremony and receptions spaces
5. Get ready to take notes and google a lot of different flowers, I know the basics, but a lot of what I wanted I only knew by seeing it – also ask about similar more affordable flowers that might work to get you the look you want
6. Don’t be afraid to ask your florist for a mood board/image to support pricing to make sure the vision and reality will match!

Our flowers for the wedding, are one of the things I am most excited about – besides the stunning venue and marrying my B.  I can’t wait to see how they’ll turn out, they’re definitely close to the level of my wildest dreams, and I can’t wait to see them come to life, in our venue, on our wedding day!

Sources: Top Left | Top Right | Bottom Left | Bottom Right

10-Miler Recap

Yesterday was the 10-Miler race I attempted to start training for back in February, but if you’ve been reading along on my fitness journey it’s been an up and down struggle for the last year… or two… so getting into a consistent workout routine has been the primary goal, and struggle. Long story short – it was ambitious, I didn’t do well with training, but I have gotten into a consistent workout routine with boot camp and am starting to incorporate other workouts, like running! So how did the 10-Miler go… well I hadn’t trained last year and impressed myself, and I did it again this year.

I beat my time from last year by 2-minutes, didn’t stop, and finished strong! It was a chilly morning, especially starting right next to the lake, but luckily as we got deeper into the course was able to hide from the wind a bit.  Of course B left me in the dust before we even hit mile one! But he was waiting at the finish line for me, and jumped out and finish  with me! He ended up beating his time from last year and kicked butt, too.

Finishing any race is always an awesome accomplishment but when it’s an significant mileage it always feels that much more awesome. We are looking to sign up for a half marathon before the year is over to keep pushing ourselves and getting back into our old running habits. We were done with our race by 10AM and had the rest of the day to brunch, soak up the sun, and socialize with family and friends!

Fitness Friday no. 9

TGIF!

This week is all about RUNNING! Some people love running and some people hate running! I have a love-hate relationship with running. I never considered myself a runner, until later in my life. In high school basketball sprints were the only kind of running I knew, and I knew it was not for me.  Then later in high school I joined track, and was placed on the mile, a mile seemed SO long to me.  And I was one of the slower runners coming in at just over a 7-minute mile (which is fast!).  After that I would run to release stress and clear my head, because I could only focus on the pounding of the pavement.

Fast-forward to my junior year in college, and my aunts encouraged me to run a 5k with them, and then offered to buy my registration for a half marathon if I trained and did it. So I did! I got my training schedule, and trained religiously – this was a big task for me! I finished my first half just under 2-hours and kept a great pace. I became addicted to the challenge mentally and physically especially for longer races like a half.  Since my first half in 2011, I’ve ran 5 other halfs and a handful of 10-milers, 10k’s, 5k’s – and continue to try and dabble, but my training game has not been as strong as it was in my peak time.

Fitness Friday 09 - Running - the bee life

So enough about me, here are some running tips whether you’re a beginner, a veteran, or someone like me – trying to get back into the race.

Start Slow: Don’t worry about your mile pace, and if you’re the person who says “running isn’t for me” run/walk and try interval training.  Your time will improve as you spend time and start tracking more miles.

Stay Consistent: Most training programs recommend at least 4-days during the week of lower mile runs, try and start here working your way up to a comfortable 3-miles.

Be Brave. Okay, so you’ve been running and improving, but you don’t think you’ll be able to finish that 6-miles? You can, go for it! You actually might be surprised at how easy it is! If you run the same pace and same distance for too long, the benefits of the exercise will lessen over time because you body will be conditioned. Any slight ways that you can push yourself, do it!

Stretch. Make sure to stretch out before and after runs, your muscles will drastically change from before you start to after, it’s important to tend to them!

It’s Mental. No matter the distance or skill you have, it’s mental challenge just as much as the physical, as soon as you want to stop running you need to fight and get those thoughts out of your head to keep running. You’ll be happier once you finish and didn’t stop!

It’s springtime, so get some fresh kicks and get out on that pavement and clock some miles!

 

10-Miler Training

One of my goals is to get back into a consistent workout routine, back to how I used to be when if I missed a workout it was the end of the world! The high of working out is addicting and I’ve told friends who’re trying to workout more, to stay consistent enough because once you get to that point you’ll know – I also warn it’s far to easy to break that habit (much easier than it was to create) … and here we are.

One thing that had always helped me stay on track was training for half marathons, I would run at least one a year sometimes even two when I was feeling a little extra crazy. Granted that was pre-Moz, pre-house, and still early into my job (yes I will always blame work) – yes those are excuses. B and I have signed up for a 10-Miler this April, so let the training ensue!

10 Miler Training - the bee lifeWith races I like to be able to make my own schedule, this way I can switch up days when I know I’ll be able to take a long run or only squeeze in a quick cross-training session. Since I know I have some busy weekends that’ll interfere with training I’ve taken the initiative to star* the days that are a conflict or an opportunity. For example, President’s day I can squeeze in some extra miles that I normally wouldn’t on a Monday and I have a weekend I’ll be traveling so that’ll throw some things off, but only if I let it. Being able to plan ahead for these is smart, I can game plan and accommodate ahead of time because all I need is a few days of procrastination to break everything I’ve been working towards.  I also like to track during the week my distance and time, and then tally up my total distance for the EOW, it’s just another way to track progress or be honest where improvements may need to be made.

Beware of Burnout. I am always cautious about this I am planning or starting to train for any long race. B always got burnout a lot quicker than I, but a training program that is longer than it needs to be (depending on your skill) can be exhausting by week 6 out of 12. So I wanted to keep this manageable but also a decent amount of time, since I could use a little extra discipline.

As you can see training officially starts next weekend, but I am going to try and get some miles in this weekend as a preempt since it takes mental and physical prep to be all in for training!

What’re your training tricks? Are you getting ready to train for a race?

10 miles on a Saturday

This past weekend we ran the 10-miler Hermes race. A new race for us, so we did not know what to expect. I didn’t have high expectations for myself, simply because I haven’t been training/running… at all! I just wanted to finish.

B’s brother came up to run this with us, so I knew they would blast ahead of me at some point, mainly because I wanted to stick to my pace. And they did… eventually I couldn’t see them. Between mile 8 and 9 I ran into B’s brother, but kept running.  I did not stop at all! I definitely lost a lot of momentum in my last few miles – especially when this woman just stopped completely in front of me at a water station. But I kicked it up into the finish.

It felt great to run this entire race, and beat my target finish time AND to run the whole thing without stopping. My ending time was 1:36:38.14 – B finished 11 minutes ahead of me! And his brother finished right after me.  The weather was perfect conditions for me; cool 40’s overcast with a little bit of sun.  I’m definitely ready to find another race, although I know any sort of training is going to be tough, so I want to stay on the shorter end of miles.

It was a productive start to our Saturday! We were all finished well before 10:30AM – the rest of the weekend was pretty relaxing and low key so it was the perfect balance of both.

DIY – Race Medal Display

I am excited to share with you my adaptation and more affordable DIY version of a Race Medal and Bib display for our home office.  I first saw the idea at a friend’s apartment, she had a cute single-bib holder with some text and hooks for metals.  As the weeks wore on and our race medals sat in a box in our office, I remembered the idea and went online to see how much these were! On Etsy, they range anywhere from $30 – $50, which while affordable, I knew I could do this much cheaper!

Step 1: Find a piece of wood that fits the desired size. Since B and I both run, I wanted to be able to display both of our bibs, separately so this had to be long enough to accommodate two 8-inch race bibs. I also wanted to have a catchy/cute phrase on the board too… more room needed.   It just so happened that we had a wood piece from our table that we got to sample stains from the carpenter… turns out this board was the perfect size to a T.  Cost = $0

Step 2: Measure + determine design.  I grabbed our race bibs, placed them on either side and penciled in the top holes for place makers and then eye-balled where I would want the hooks to go along the bottom for the medals.  The phrase I decided on was borrowed from one I saw online; “Soul Mates in it for the Long Run.”  This phrase is so fitting for B and I and goes back to the roots of when we started dating, four years ago.  It was maybe a week into dating and I was running my first half-marathon, while B was running a 10k.  The first person I ran into, in the crowd after the race was B, literally ran into each other, and if you have ever been in a race before you know how crowded they are! I knew it was something special when that happened.

Step 3: Paint backdrop. I had some left-over acrylic paint in grey and white (just what I needed) so I grabbed those and started to paint! Cost = $2.50

Step 4: Buy hardware. I needed little hooks for the bibs and then larger hooks for the metals.  The hardware store is literally 5-houses down the street and around the corner so a quick trip there and I was in business!  I ended up needed 1-pack of the smaller hooks  ($1.29) and 3-packs of the larger hooks ($1.35 each).  We also needed sawtooth hooks for the back and other hooks for the wall (about $5). Cost = $10.50

Step 5: Stencil + paint phrase. I wanted this to look better than all free-hand painting, so I printed out the phrase and cut the letters, traced in position to make sure I could fit everything, then painted! I then free-handed the other writing and added a cute personal touch of “est. 2011” – not perfect but it works!

Step 6: Apply hardware. This was a little tricky getting the square bent hooks into place and definitely took some patience, after starting a hole with the screwdriver we were able to get these screwed into place.  Afterwards I placed two large sawtooth hangers onto the back and then nailed 50lb weight picture frame hooks into the wall.

Step 7: Hang up + decorate with metals + bibs.

Total cost: $13.00

Now our race bibs and metals have a nice home… and plenty of room for more to come in the future!

Week 6 Training – Halfway Point

The end of this training week will mark the halfway point, exactly 6 more weeks until the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon! The last few weeks have unfortunately been very sparse with the training aspect, so time for a harsh reality check.

Week 3 – I literally did nothing

Week 4 – I got a short 2.65 mile run and my long 5 miles in – for a grand total of 7.65 miles

Week 5 – One 4-mile run

Week 6 – Still in progress

I have 4 days left in week 6 to get some additional miles in. I really hate writing and publishing this for the world to see, but I have been severely lacking motivation…. major runners block.

Tough love 

How do you push through your long days to get those miles in?

Week 1 Training: Inspiration

Last Monday was the official start of half marathon #7 training! As of today, one week down – 11 more to go before the Cleveland Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon.  As I mentioned in my recap in May, I didn’t train very well… I’d like to think I am off to a better start this time around.

Here is my week breakdown:

Monday – 3 miles
Completed: 27:32 (3.59 miles)

Tuesday – 2 miles or cross
Completed: 17:57

Wednesday – 3 miles + strength

Thursday – Rest
Completed 🙂

Friday – 30 min. cross
Completed: 1-hour Spin Class

Saturday – 4 miles

Sunday – Strength
Completed: 31:41 (2.30 miles)

Week Total Miles: 7.89 miles

I gained a little extra inspiration when we went to support a friend’s brother at his movie premiere on Wednesday night called “Running the Edge.”  It premiered in Cleveland at Capital Theater, the film follows the journey of a man and his family while he works to break the record for running the Colorado trail…which is 468 miles long.  His goal was to complete this in 8 days, 7 hours and 17 seconds, running anywhere from 12-14 hours a day and getting minimum sleep.  It was incredible, his determination, time spent and self-discipline it took to accomplish this was beyond motivational. 

Friday, I was able to try out the local spinning hot-spot, Harness Cycle, for a co-worker’s “Bride Ride Happy Hour” … a sweaty hour work-out + happy hour afterwards, was my kind of night!  The spin class was a lot of fun, especially with all the girls from work!  Not to mention it was a challenging work out (which I am always game for), mainly because it was really different from the spin classes I am used too. This class made you work your body more in tune to the beat of the music … and good music at that! I have always been a fan of group classes, because they help me stay motivated and push myself harder than I would if I was working out alone. I am definitely hoping to get back to Harness, the work out was great, and their studio is beautiful!

My goal is to continue to push myself harder each week regardless of the busy weekends and long days… because the busy weekends never stop!  

Are you training for a half marathon, or any kind of race?  What keeps you motivated? 

Happy Training!

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