Yesterday was EXTREMELY rough for me to get out the door for my run (I mean, it is not normal to feel exhausted after 8.2 hours of sleep!?!) but by mile 3 I was very happy that I did.  7.1 miles @ 9:23 average and a light rain for the last 2 miles.

I attempted a selfie too but accidentally did a panoramic photo;)  It turned out lovely.

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Came home and had our morning porch discussion for a few minutes before starting the rest of the day!

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Yesterday Brooke and I went for a little nails date together!

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Funny how we both chose the exact same color… great minds think alike (or maybe I’m just having a hard time growing up;)!

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Lunch was tuna on one piece of toast (the first time I’ve had tuna in like a year?! It sounded really good) and one piece of toast with pb and j.

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And then we hit up the pool!  I posted this on Instagram but I had to post it here too because I love it so much:)

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We caught up on Clifford’s current life happenings.

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And decided that it is never too early for pajamas:)

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The three of us came up with what we should have for dinner… a cereal party.  Great minds think alike.

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This combo was everything and I can’t wait to have it again too.

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TV watching snack in bed… frozen grapes that are the size of golf balls.

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Of all the workouts that I miss doing… my number #1 would have to be Tempo runs.  I think the confidence that comes after a tempo run is absolutely amazing and it gives me quite the mental boost for race day.  My body prefers the comfortably hard workouts for longer distances over the short and fast stuff too.  I think that is why I choose to race more half-marathons/marathons than 5ks & 10ks (although, I’m making it a goal after this baby is born to get in some of the short stuff too)!

I personally usually do my tempo runs around race pace.  If I’m training for a half-marathon then I do my tempo runs at half-marathon pace and if I am training for a marathon then my tempo pace is usually about 10 seconds faster than marathon pace (and sometimes right at marathon pace for the longer tempos of 8-10 miles).  I love the tempo because it trains my mind and body to really know a certain pace and on race day my goal pace feels normal to me because I’ve practiced it so many miles during the tempo.

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There are a lot of awesome benefits that come with the tempo run!

“During tempo runs, lactate and hydrogen ions— by-products of metabolism- are released into the muscles.  The ions make the muscles acidic, eventually leading to fatigue.  The better trained you become, the higher you push your ‘threshold,’ meaning your muscles become better at using these by-products.  The result is less-acidic muscles, so they keep on contracting, letting you run farther and faster.”  (source)

From Hanson’s Half Marathon Method:

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I’ve got a few tips (things that I do/remember) with the tempo!

*Remember with tempo workouts (like any workout) that it isn’t always going to be perfect (and sometimes far from perfect)!  BUT there are always positive lessons.  There are always things learned from the good and the bad workouts.  So if you don’t hit the paces, focus on the things you learned.  What works and what doesn’t work for you.  Think about how you can grow and excel next time.

*Remember throughout the workout that some pain/discomfort/uneasiness is good for us.  I think our world tries to convince us that when things get hard we just need to hit the easy button (i.e. buy more, scroll more, addictive behaviors, etc to skip the pain and feel numb)… but life isn’t meant to always be easy.  The hard stuff really is what brings the most growth and change in us.  It’s necessary to have the hard parts and when things are feeling rough during the workout, learning to be comfortable with the pain (not injury pain) will help us really grow into the runners we are meant to be.  Embrace the pain!  Focus on how this is making you stronger and that hitting the easy button on this workout isn’t going to get you to your running goals.  ***Talking a bit more about this tomorrow:)

*Believe in yourself, you are stronger than you let your brain think.  You’ve got this.  Below is a picture from a 4:45 a.m. run where my dad drove next to me:)

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*Break the workout into smaller increments… think about the mile you are in rather than thinking about how much longer you have (something I constantly need to remember).  If you did a tempo workout recently, focus on remembering how you DID THAT and rocked it… you did it before, you can do it again!

*Focus.  Tempo workouts take a lot of focus for me.  Learning to pace ourselves and avoid going out too fast or slowing down too much when we are tired takes a lot of concentration.  Tempo runs are not time trials… save your racing legs for race day but focus on holding your comfortably hard pace throughout the miles.

*Find the right course for you.  I usually stick to flat areas for my tempo runs and places where I can keep going without stop signs or having to cross streets (once I stop, it’s hard to get back up to pace again).

*I feel like the first half of the tempo run is all mental and the second part is all physical.  For the first half my body is feeling fresh and ready to run and if anything I am tempted to pick up the pace more than I should.  BUT during the first half I have to mentally continually tell myself to not doubt myself and to not think thoughts like, ‘holy cow.. I have 5.12 more miles to run at tempo pace… I haven’t done this forever, how am I going to do this?’  BUT THEN for the second half the mental part gets easy because I am getting closer and closer to finishing and I have already gone for x amount of miles so mentally I feel more confident that of course I can finish.   The second half of a tempo run switches over to a physical test for me and my body starts getting tired and my muscles tell me to stop.  Once you finish the tempo run, you have an amazing runner’s high because you realize you just got in some killer mental AND physical work.

*Make sure to have an easy day before and after the tempo run!  Tempos require a lot out of us so go into them recovered and recover well after!

*If holding a pace is really hard for you, practice this on the treadmill first.  On the treadmill your pace isn’t going to change unless you jump off or change the speed yourself so try adjusting to learning how to hold a pace by starting on the treadmill!  I LOVE doing tempo runs on the treadmill because it allows me to just FOCUS on the task rather than checking my garmin, watching for cars, crossing streets etc.

*Take tiny steps.  Don’t just start with a 6 mile tempo run or something.  There have been training cycles where I start out with a 2 mile tempo run.  You are probably following a training plan or working with a coach but if you aren’t, remember to take baby steps (What About Bob)!  I’d rather take some time to build up my tempo distances than take some time off because I jumped into doing too much, too soon.  If you are just starting to include tempo runs and learn how to do them try breaking up the tempo in the beginning—>  you could do 3 x 10 minutes with recovery jogs in between each 10 minutes @ tempo.

*You can also try out wave tempos!  These are fun and keep your mind occupied thinking about what is next:)  I explain why they work and the benefits in this post.  This was a wave tempo that I had while training for Boston one year:

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*Don’t forget to start your workout with an aerobic warm-up for 10-15 minutesish followed by some dynamic drills and then doing the workout itself… followed by an aerobic cool-down for 10-15 minutes.

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IMPORTANT QUESTION!!!!  Andrew and I had this discussion yesterday.  Do you ever buy the generic brands of products?  We are wondering what you think are a few things that you don’t like to buy generic (because the brand stuff tastes much better)?

-We concluded that graham crackers, cereal and ice cream (Tillamook, Blue Bell and Ben & Jerry’s please) are three things we don’t like to buy generic!

Are you a tuna fish fan… yes or no?  What do you eat with it?

What are your thoughts on the tempo run?  Any tips?  Would you rather do the longer comfortably hard stuff or the short really hard stuff?

For those of you that like mixing cereals… what is your favorite combo?!

The belly band has made it’s appearance.  I’ve only used it once so I’m not completely sure what I think of it but once I know, I’ll give you the details.  Basically I love using a belly band during pregnant running because it is like a sports bra for that growing stomach… it keeps things … Continue Reading

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GOOD MORNING!!!  We had a fun morning yesterday (while wearing  a lot of grey)! I’ve got a full race recap coming for you tomorrow!  We (I?… I kid, Andrew enjoyed it once it was over;) loved the race and I’ll be back in 2018! Brookers (I haven’t called her that on the blog in quite … Continue Reading

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I bet you can guess how many miles I did yesterday:)  No training plan = my body goes to autopilot and I’m more than okay with that right now.   I sure love following all of your amazing training though in the comments, on your blogs or on IG. Trying to see my toes while … Continue Reading

I’ve got a new HRG BABY post for you today HERE—>  23 Weeks and I get all emotional sharing a story with you. ————————————————————————————- Seven and a half miles for Wednesday.  Boom.  Another morning where it started out chilly which was absolutely amazing.  My average pace was a 9:02 and I didn’t take any breaks … Continue Reading