Back at it again

Hi All! I’ve been gone for quite some time due to life, but have come back for another summer training edition. Last time I stopped blogging I had just finished two half-marathons (1st- 2:22:40, 2nd- 2:27:30). After winter came and I slowly began to stop running. Luckily for me, I’m in a different city with a different mindset for this summer. The main difference is this time I’m hoping to move from half marathon to full marathon training. I’ve also been able to get a change of location due to a very neat internship at Under Amour. I’m slowly adjusting to being by water & not having as many hills to conquer here in Baltimore, MD. A major change I’ve faced is that I’m also becoming more active and am attending workout classes instead of just running. This is probably due to all the athletes and motivational walls surrounding me at UA. I can’t wait to talk more about my journey and what I discover and I try to achieve a greater goal. Also, I may do some product reviews as to running shoes and apparel I’ve come to love or avoid. I’ll also include what training I do outside of running that will help my body condition to being stronger. I’ll probably also include some recipes that I come to stumble upon, cooking for myself for the first time can be a funny and eventful process

Here’s a picture from my first run in Baltimore. Doesn’t get better than this!

 

PS: I promise to post every week, because I’m happy to share my journey and hopefully motivate others to just get up and be active!

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100+ Miles Later…

I’ve taken my time apart from my blog in order to balance my life. My last post was at the end of my summer and now that I have finally settled into a workout and school routine I can finally dedicate my time once again to this blog. You can read more about what I’m up to here!!! ūüôā

Back to where I’ve been. Here’s a list of accomlishments since I’ve last posted!¬†Celebrating 100!

  1. Ran 8 miles!
  2. Ran 10 miles!
  3. RAN 12 MILES!
  4. Hit 100 miles overall!
  5. Gained an immense amount of confidence

Running: Man, these were possibly the hardest challenges to overcome. Each time I had a long run I mentally prepared myself to be tired, exhausted, and proud. I hit my 12 miles run this past weekend. I almost cried, not just from the hard work put in, but for completing something new again.

100 Miles: This may be a small number to daily runner, but I never thought I would hit it. I’ve seen my mom, dad, really most people in my family hit it, and now? I’m finally in the 100 Mile Club! What could possibly be my next goal? 200 miles! I’m giving myself until October 26th to do this. Now you can all hold me accountable!

Confidence: When I began running I hated it. Every little thing from waking up early, to soreness, to what I imaged were miles of boredom. I can now happily say, I like running. I love hitting longer distances, faster times, and buying cooler shoes. I have seen a change in myself that I didn’t think would happen when I started this journey. I’m happier and I now believe there is even more I am capable of!

I can’t wait to keep updating on progress and as I take the next steps to decide where my running career will go after this half-marathon! Thanks to everyone who reads this and encourages me!

-MG

Re-Charging

Breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day. But with my early-morning drag I hardly wake up with enough time to leave the house on time! When I began running I realized breakfast would become more important than ever. It would help fuel my evening run and help replenish nutrients from the night before. While researching this, I learned that breakfast helps you not overeat during your lunch meal and it keeps your metabolism in check. A simple solution for the weekdays is a protein smoothie on the go! I bring snacks for the morning (fruits, nuts, or granola bars) to keep me sustained until lunch if I have a late mid-day meeting! With my spike in activity, my body is asking to be maintained better than before. Here are some recipes I whip up in our small blender. (Please note: On the weekends I do eat a more diverse breakfast, especially after long runs! I don’t recommend this every day, as your body needs variance & possibly more nutrients than mine!).

Mango Strawberry: Very Berry:
1/2 cup of chopped fresh Mango 4-6 strawberries, halved
4-6 strawberries, halved 5-6 raspberries
1 cup vanilla almond milk small handful of blueberries
3/4 spoon of protein 3/4 spoon of protein
1 tablespoon of chia seeds 3/4 cup almond milk
Strawberry Orange: Strawberry Banana:
6-7 frozen strawberries sliced in half 5-6 frozen strawberries sliced in half
1 cup of orange juice (The fresher the better!) 1 banana sliced in small
2 tablespoons of plain Greek yogurt 2 tablespoons of plain Greek yogurt
3/4  scoop of protein 3/4 scoop of protein
1 tablespoon of chia seeds 1 cup of orange juice

What are some quick breakfasts you like? Hope you try & enjoy these as much as I do!

-MG

Faster Than Ever

Fastest pace so far!This past week of running has been one to remember. I’ve hit my fastest times and paces and have done my fastest 4 miles so far at 44:42, with an 11:02 pace.¬†This may not be fast to a lot of¬†runners; but for someone who’s only been¬†running for 3 weeks I’ve never been happier.¬†I’ve experienced no pain in my body and only a little soreness. When I think about running I don’t think about the long miles, time, and effort spent into it anymore. I don’t always dread it anymore either. Now I think about how rewarding it is. I’ve been able to prove to myself that I can do what I once thought I couldn’t. Yesterday during my 4 mile run I didn’t feel as tired as the first time I did 4 miles. I also, realized I am ready to hit my longest distance this week of 6 miles. While initially I’m tired and worn out from my run, overall I have more energy throughout the day than before. I’ve also noticed my body getting slimmer. I’m able to fit into size I couldn’t before or had to squeeze into before. This has raised my confidence in myself overall, and I have running to thank for that. Seeing the impact that it’s made on my body, self confidence, and energy level, I’m starting to think running will be a part of my life even after my half-marathon. Who knows, maybe a full marathon is even in my future.

IMG_8739In addition to running, I’ve downloaded Charity miles. This is an application that donates money to various charities just by you¬†walking, running, or biking!¬† A big named company sponsors your run/walk/bike ride & they’re the ones that donate. With over 25 charities to choose from, you’ll have one that means something big to you. While a mile is only worth $0.25 I’ve decided I’m making an impact either way. I’ve raised a total of $4.48 and hope to get to at least $6 by the end of this week. While it may not seem like much at first, once I knew that I would be running a minimum of 4 miles from now on (basically), that the money towards charity would soon add up. I’ve personally loved running with the app as it doesn’t block any other apps and just uses my phone’s GPS. If you haven’t thought of downloading it, DO IT!!!

What do you use to keep you going through long runs?

Any advice as to how to run with summer heat? As temperatures near the mid 90’s it feels like I am getting tired quicker.

-MG

Running with Others

While running is an individual sport, I feel it is better when shared among friends and other runners. While at home this summer I’ve been training alongside Geoff, who keeps me on pace and keeps me motivated to continue the run. During the school year I will hopefully find a running buddy who will keep me going even after 9 miles, which seems nearly impossible. But what about joining something bigger?

In 1981 the Venados Running Club was formed by a few runner friends in Chicago, IL. After a few years of inactivity my cousin, Enrique Rivera, decided to start the club up again and watch it grow. My family has been running with the club ever since and I’m proud to now be a continuous part of it. Venados running club is based in downtown Chicago. That doesn’t mean that they forget about me, my family here in Indiana, or¬†any other runner.¬†With weekly shout-outs to race finishers they never let you be forgotten. The club has expanded to more than just people running together. It’s become a little family of motivation no matter how many miles you are running. In addition to running you get friends, cookouts, and even special Nike Training+ work out sessions! They¬†always keep you¬†up to date on¬†upcoming races &¬†will help you come¬†up with training schedules.¬†There are people who are just starting to run and people who have ran more miles than imaginable. These are the people who motivate me. They’re different ages & in different stages of their health life, but that doesn’t slow them down. Knowing I’m a part of a group that excels so much makes me strive to be just like the top runners in the club.¬†If you’re in the Chicago area I would definitely encourage getting in touch with them¬†in order to¬†became a part of something bigger & something that will keep you going – no matter how many miles.

Check out their facebook link to know more: https://www.facebook.com/venadosrunning?fref=ts

Post-Race fun a few years back!

Post-Race fun a few years back!

-MG

PS: If you’re in the Bloomington area come late August and early September and want to run 7 to 12 miles, let me know!

Shoes Shoes Shoes

I’ve recently been exposed to the importance of your running shoes. Prior to this week I was running with decent shoes, nothing too flashy, but also not meant for longer distance. When I reached mile 4 this past Saturday I began feeling a pain along my arch that caused me to walk for a little bit. I was using the Saucony Cohesion 5 (I know I know out of date) and realized after a while they became heavy on my feet and I actually almost tripped over my ankle a few times. This isn’t the typical review for these shoes, but I guess my feet are just weird. I liked them for doing light cardio or class, because the heavier base gave me a little bit more stability.

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Which brings me to my new shoes, Asics GEL-Noosa Tri 10. I have loved my past two runs with them and can’t wait to continue the training in them. These are originally triathlon shoes, but that didn’t matter to me. They give me the support¬†I need to run straight, while being light weight enough to not drag me. The¬†gel around the back heel makes the more comfortable as I try to¬†get the correct stride distance for my runs.¬†I will continue to see how these go within the next few weeks and hope that I have no issues.

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As my journey continues I will eventually need new shoes. What are your recommendations for shoes? What works best with a support needed? Any specific brands? My parents love Mizuno and tried the Wave Rider 7 and 8, but the support was not what I needed for my arch.

Also, what socks won’t make my feet feel hot & suffocated? Need something breathable, because my feet sometimes feel like they need to be dipped in ice cold water!

-MG

End of Week 2: Ahead of Schedule

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Half-way point view!

I wrapped up my second week of training in the windy city and couldn’t be prouder!

I started off on Roosevelt & Michigan (for those that know the city) and ran to Navy Pier and back. I was only supposed to do .25 mile walk to begin followed by an easy 3 mile run, but instead was able to do 5.1 miles running  and .5 miles walking. I started  running with my boyfriend, Geoffrey, where he was able to keep me at around a 10:45-11:00 minute pace. He would slow me down in order to not get burnt out. Once we reached the halfway point, we realized we were going a longer distance than originally planned. On the way back we slowed our pace to around 12:30-13:00 minute miles, in order to be able to run and not walk.

I had no major cramps or fatigue during the run, which is great¬†news. I had an aching feeling along my arch, which made me think about getting new shoes. I’ve bought some new shoes, which will be the focus of the next post!

Realizing I had the endurance to continue running, even though I was going farther than planned was fantastic news. I was so proud of not only myself, but Geoffrey, who went running even though he isn’ running the half-marathon…yet! Below are some pictures from my run! If I could see a lake every run, I think I would be more motivated! ūüôā

Navy Pier

Navy Pier

Lakeshore

Lakeshore