New York City Marathon Training- Some Updates

I could apologize for not writing as faithfully as I would like to.

But I won’t.

The fact is that I have hit a busy streak in life that is fairly unprecedented and something had to give. While I love this little blog and keeping up with all of my lovely blogger friends- Happy Health Sweaty appears to have taken the hit.

With that said, I’m here and I have a few updates to share.

NYCM Training

As I got further into the Nike+ training plan I wasn’t crazy about how it was structured further into the schedule. The biggest issue I had is that it offers no flexibility to move around runs and hikes the mid-week mileage pretty early on.

So, after some careful consideration, I went back to running 3mi/day for a few weeks and adopted the Coach Dino 18-week training plan. I’m two weeks in and LOVING it! Instead of getting pretty check marks on my Nike+ interface (which is really the only thing I miss about that program), I get to check each run off when I get home. The plan is proudly displayed on the fridge, which Jim thinks is me taking the whole “I’m going to be a teacher” thing a little too far.

I can cross it off just like homework assignments in my agenda in Jr. High. Don't act like you didn't highlight each assignment as it was completed. No, that was just me? Liar.

I can cross it off just like homework assignments in my agenda in Jr. High. Don’t act like you didn’t highlight each assignment as it was completed. No, that was just me? Liar.

This plan is 5 running days and I can throw in cross-training as I see fit. I’ve been consistently improving in terms of speed and endurance and love feeling the changes on each run.

 

In Nike+, this is what progress looks like.

In Nike+, this is what progress looks like.

Hills are getting easier to climb. That doesn’t mean I like them any more, but they’re getting easier. I still dread hill day more than long runs, but I don’t feel sick to my stomach before heading out the door anymore. I’ll take it.

Looking ahead a few months into the schedule and peak week still falls the week of my wedding. There’s nothing I can do to change this, and I’d just be lying if I said I’d be focused on fitting in a 22-miler the week I’m saying “I do”. Maybe it will happen the week before, maybe the week after, but most likely just not at all. I’ll run 20, and hope for the best.

 

Wedding Planning

I’m still not the best “Bride to Be” there has ever been. I’m making progress and knocking things off the to-do list one at a time. Am I forgetting things? Probably. If I am, are they going to become emergencies day of? Probably not. The way I’m looking at it is if I haven’t thought about it and no one else has asked about it, whatever “it” is probably doesn’t mean that much to me. So, just like with other low-priority items, it’s not making the cut. Sorry, flatware selections.

We did decide on cake. So far, that has been my favorite task. It’s certainly the one we took the most seriously.

Bakery 1

Bakery 1

 

Bakery 2

Bakery 2

 

 

At this point Jim said "I'm not tasting anymore, now I'm just eating."

At this point Jim said “I’m not tasting anymore, now I’m just eating.”

 

Bakery 3. There was more eating.

Bakery 3. There was more eating.

 

What I am most excited to be planning is our honeymoon. Right now it looks like Hawaii and Bora Bora are the top two contenders, so if you have a recommendation on either let me know. I’ve done Hawaii, he hasn’t; but I also went 12 years ago and I’m sure it’s a different experience when you go with a spouse. Since we’re waiting until February to go we have some time to decide, but I’d like to get as much planned as possible before the fall semester takes over my life.

 

School

Fall 2014, you are my nemesis. Epidemiology, A&P, Promotion Strategies and 3 other classes to balance while getting married and training for a marathon. If I make it through this semester alive, I’m sure I’ll owe my liver a big-giant thank you detox over Christmas break. For now, there is one summer class left and then a month of academic freedom and lots of beach reading. Taking any and all recommendations.

 

Those Angry Tweets

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have noticed an angry tweet or a million over the weekend. Let me explain- I’m an 80y/o man inside. I enjoy waking up early, going to bed at a reasonable hour and I listen to talk radio in the car and at home. My favorite radio show for the past 10 or so years has been Opie and Anthony. You may have heard of them for a string of ridiculous antics pulled back in the early 2000’s; but the show kind of gets a bad rep. It’s an uncensored show that talks about news and current events and regularly has stand up comedians commenting on issues and it basically makes me laugh my ass off first thing in the morning. A time when everyone needs a good laugh.

Well, last weekend Anthony got assaulted in Times Square, went on a Twitter rant against the woman who assaulted him (clearly a lot of inappropriate/offensive language was used), and Anthony was promptly fired by Sirius/XM, effectively canceling a major part of my mornings. Let me clarify that I don’t agree with a lot of what Anthony had to say, but the fact that he was FIRED for voicing displeasure at being assaulted on his personal Twitter account I think is a HUGE concern for all of us on social media.

Yes, what he said would be grossly inappropriate in the workplace. But he didn’t say it there.

I’m sure I’ve said a lot of things on this blog that people wouldn’t agree with. But this blog isn’t related to my employer. I like to think that I can say what I’d like here without my employer firing me if they disagreed. What it boils down to is a free speech issue and that companies are going overboard in trying to censor employees off working hours. I don’t like it, and made that very clear to a few people, including Sirius/XM.

I try to keep the RunBritRun account friendly. I just felt like I had to use my voice to stand up for my beliefs on that one.

Also, speaking of social media, I made this decision a week or so ago.

 

I'm officially Facebook free!

I’m officially Facebook free!

 

Going Facebook Free

It’s amazing how often we run into people we haven’t seen in months and find ourselves already knowing pretty much everything they’ve been up to since the last time you saw them. That vacation they took? You saw the pictures. Their engagement- you heard the WHOLE proposal story when they posted a status update about it. Your ex’s baby: Seen.

Last week I saw a lot of people I hadn’t seen since last summer and therefore, not since our engagement. I didn’t post much about it on the -book, but who I saw said “Oh yeah, I saw on Facebook- congrats!”. It made me think about how much I would have enjoyed sharing that news in person. A style of communication that seems to be increasingly lost in our generation. That was the final straw. I quit Facebook. And I have to say, I don’t miss it.

 

I do miss this blog though. And I miss you. What have you been up to? Tell me all about it in the comments. Are you running NYCM too? Let’s be friends.

 

Back To School

It’s been a good break from classes.

I read a few books that were not at all school related. It was glorious.

The Fault In Our Stars– Quick, good read. Lots of tears. I recommend you read it alone, without your fiancé staring at you judging-ly from the other side of the couch.

Me Before You- A lot of people told me this book was incredible. To be honest, I just didn’t see it. It was an alright, quick read. Wasn’t crazy about it.

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius– My all-time favorite book, re-read for the 30th time since I was 17. Still love it.

Monuments Men– I’m 10 pages in. So far so good.

Aside from reading, I also watched more daytime TV than I probably should have. Kathy Lee and Hoda is my new favorite show because they make it acceptable to drink wine at 11am with your girlfriends. I now DVR Friends because I forgot how much I love it. And, alas; that one chick on Maury still hasn’t found out who her baby daddy is after 7 appearances. So while I feel like there is unfinished business, I’m happy that I’ll be heading back to class this week.

Last semester was busy but I felt like I balanced everything pretty well. Clearly seeking out some sort of mental break, Jim and I had to add a few extra major life components into this mix for this semester.  On top of work, classes, substitute teaching, home life and those friends rumor has it I’d like to keep around; I’m not also in the midst of wedding planning, marathon training and puppy raising.

Awesome.

Really, I don’t even mean that sarcastically. My life is awesome. Every morning I wake up and know just how lucky I really am to live my life. Yes, it gets stressful. But would I trade any aspect of it for a little more free time? Never.

Buster is going to have more of an adjustment period than I am. His beloved ottoman is going to be taken over again.

Real life. With some deliciousness mixed in.

During the semester, this is my life

One of the keys to surviving busy weeks is meal prep. Last night I made this amazing (and SUPER healthy) crock-pot jambalaya that just gets better throughout the week.

Photo and recipe curtsey of http://www.preventionrd.com/ Some of my favorite recipes are from her!

Photo and recipe curtsey of http://www.preventionrd.com/ Some of my favorite recipes are from her!

Dinner is taken care of, house is cleaned, Buster is happy and I’m ready to face the first day of classes on Wednesday. Except for that whole blizzard thing. Which likely means classes start Thursday.

A snow day isn’t the worst thing, I guess.

 

What are your secrets to balancing the rest of your life during marathon training? Is there something I could be doing to make life way easier? Let me know!