Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November in Review

Before I get into my recap I just want to say that this is the third time I've put on this outfit in the past 24 hours and the first time I've actually gotten out for a run in it.

Sleepy, sweaty, morning run goodness
Yesterday morning I woke up at 6 am to go out for jog, but after getting all ready I decided that I was too stressed out about a lecture I had to give a work and just decided instead to into work early and prepare. 12 hours later I put the same outfit back on to make a second attempt at running. I got all the way out my door, stood there for about 45 seconds watching the torrential rain pour down, said "hell no," and went back inside. Finally this morning I actually got out and ran (hence the thumbs up). Third time's the charm! There's nothing like two days of not running to make you go freaking crazy.

On to the recap now!...

2011 Mileage Recap:

January: 66.62
February: 75.69
March: 109.97
April: 103.58
May: 96.99
June: 124.2
July: 151.95
August: 172.61
September: 193.06
October: 125.05
November: 148.0

What went well:

First of all, I RAN A FREAKING MARATHON. So yeah, that was a good thing, and it actually went pretty well too. As in, I didn't die and I'm pleased with my finish time.

Other good things include not injuring myself again and recovering nicely from my shin splints. I was even able to squeeze in one last, late 20 mile training run post-injury to make sure I was back in the endurance game before the marathon.

I also planned out my 2012 race calendar, which is starting to come together in real life as registrations are opening up!

I've really enjoyed my post-race recovery runs. It's kind of nice to run whenever I want for however long I want at a nice easy pace.

In the non-running world of things I had an awesome engagement photo shoot, Thanksgiving, and engagement party.

What didn't go well:

I think this is the first month that nothing really went wrong. Let's see how long I can keep this up!

December goals:

I do not have any races scheduled for December (sad face), but I am planning to start a new training plan next week in preparation for big things 2012!

My biggest goals for the month are:
  • Start new training plan
  • Listen to my body and stay injury free
  • Keep up the good eating habits from my taper period
  • Keep up the cross training 2-3 days per week (1-2 days swim, 1 day spin)
  • Remain calm and stress free as I approach finals in the next two weeks (ahh!)
  • Start looking into hotels and color schemes for the wedding
  • Enjoy the heck out of my winter break
  • Work on new Running Through History posts for the beginning of 2012
A side note to the last bullet point there, which I've been meaning to address for awhile - I really, really enjoyed writing these once-a-month posts when I first started my blog this summer. If you haven't experienced the full dorkitude of them I encourage you to check them out here and here. That said, they each require quite a bit of time and research and it just became way too overwhelming for me once grad school started. I'm hoping to work on several posts over my winter break and relaunch the series in January to appear on the first of every month. So stay tuned for that!

Also, this happens to be my 100th post and in honor of that I've launched a new Facebook page. Make sure you "like" me next time you head over there! :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

An Engagement (Party) to Remember

On Friday evening my Mom threw an amazing engagement party for Mike and I.

Usually we'd all be pulling our hair out trying to get everything ready, but we decided to make it simple and hired a caterer. They made everything completely stress free!

We had heat lamps ready to go outside, but we lucked out and the weather was a nice 55-60 degrees. 

The food was amazing and they were able to accommodate our vegan requests. 

I picked up some cookies from Whole Foods to supplement dessert. I may have also hidden an extra box for myself for later...

My future MIL picked up two vegan cakes. They were so yummy, especially the vanilla one, which had strawberries inside!

I had a great time hanging out with everyone and I think both families really got along well. It was a nice preview for the wedding.

Mom, me, and Caitlin
My soon-to-be other half
Even the girls joined the party (and got lots of attention of course)
Caitlin was really (really!) excited when she found out there was vegan cake

Cutting the cake

It was a great night and now this whole wedding thing seems real. I'm getting married ya'll!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Vegan Thanksgiving

By now Thanksgiving was days ago and all of you are totally over it and ready for Christmas and New Year's. So let's catch up quickly shall we!

Mike and I headed down to DC last Wednesday evening for the holiday. Every year my Mom's family has a huge Thanksgiving. Like 40 people. It's crazy.

We started the holiday with a nice run. The weather was cool and crisp in the morning, which meant long sleeves.

Mike and I began by crossing over into Virginia to run on the Mt. Vernon Trail.

After about 2 miles we crossed the Arlington Memorial Bridge back into DC.

Then we decided to run up the Lincoln Memorial steps and take a breather.

Bluest sky ever

Mike turned around after this and headed back the way we came. It was his longest run in months! 5 miles! I'm so, so excited and happy for him. 

Meanwhile, I decided to do a loop of the Mall of the past the Washington Monument all the way up to the Capitol Building before heading back over to the Mount Vernon Trail. 

On the way back I ran into these fools:

My sister Caitlin and her boyfriend Benny
They got a late start because they are in those special college years when your body still allows you/wants you to sleep in until 10 am. 

After the photo op I headed home to tally up the miles. I ended up with about 9.5, my longest run since the marathon only 4 days before. It felt really good and I took it nice and slow. I'm not going to lie, I kind of like this whole run as much or as little as you want whenever you want because you're not on a training plan thing. I look forward to keeping it up for another week to facilitate further marathon recovery. 

After a quick shower it was time to get cooking! Caitlin is a hardcore vegan, and even though our huge family caters for Thanksgiving every year, there are more and more family members every year who have gone vegan or vegetarian so Caitlin has started cooking some things on the side for these folks. I give all of the creative credit to her. I just chopped what I was told!

Me and the chef
Maple sweet potatoes
Kale, brussel sprouts, and almond salad with shallot vinaigrette
Butternut squash and cranberry pilaf for "stuffing"
Vegan apple pie
Mini vegan pumpkin pie

She also had regular vegan mashed potatoes, butternut squash soup, and steamed broccoli and beet salad.  Everything was absolutely delicious! I keep telling her she should be a chef if only to not deprive the world of her wonderful vegan desserts!

Cooking is more fun when you take silly pictures

The vegan choices were a hit with everyone, particularly the brussel sprout/kale salad (of which I chopped most of the brussel sprouts ahem ahem thank you very much). 

As is tradition after stuffing our faces with food at my Grandad's house, most of us head out to the street to work it off with some touch football. 

I caught the ball once. Too bad I didn't know what to do after that. Oops.

How was your Thanksgiving? Did you have any special/not traditional Thanksgiving food dishes?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Philly Marathon Race Photos

I promise I'll write a real post tomorrow with all sorts of fun Thanksgiving and engagement party photos and hooplah. Until then, sit tight and enjoy some of the official race photos from the Philadelphia Marathon last Sunday!

PS. I cannot believe it has not even been a whole week yet since the race. It feels like a lifetime ago!

Get outta my way buddy!

Hope everyone else is having a great holiday weekend!