Monday, July 30, 2012

Taking Care

Well, it's Monday. And let's be honest we could all use a little pick me up. Some candy perhaps?

Phelps & Lochte, top USA men's swimmers
Eye candy, that is. No thanks necessary.

I have to start off with a confession. I said I was going to keep the weekend non-impact up until my 11 mile run yesterday morning.

I didn't.

I couldn't. The track was calling. The good news? I cranked out some 400 repeats, and hit 1:26-1:27 every time. I was pretty proud. I also got a little swimming and biking in as well.

oh cool look what i did! so crafty.
Aaaaand aside from the above, my weekend was extremely low key. Other activities included taking cheesy pics of myself photography...





















... rearranging the furniture in my room.... and lastly, a lot of taking care of myself. Something I've realized I don't do enough.

Outside of the realm of healthy eating, vitamins and icing... I really don't do much as far as prevention. I honestly don't even stretch, which I know is a controversial topic to begin with but let me make the bold statement that I'm possibly the most inflexible human being on the planet.

So Kait, what did you do this weekend as a means of taking care of yourself? Don't hold your breathe, this is actually a pretty lengthy list. Aside from my typical stretching and hydrating...

-I foam rolled, something I hate doing but am really trying to work on. Hurts so good.
-I bought this juice:


100% tart cherry juice. It's PACKED with antioxidants and is supposed to be a natural anti-inflammatory. So I've started taking a swig in both the morning and night, because I figure hey why not?

-I sat in the hot tub for awhile and rested my foot against the jet. I'm not sure if this is actually 'healthy' or not, but it felt great.

-Following the hot tub, I went into the sauna and stretched. Or at least attempted to stretch.

-I also soaked my angry right foot in Epsom Salt the night before my 'longer' run, as it supposedly relaxes your feet and reduces inflammation. Are you seeing a pattern here? Inflammation = the devil.



And post-run? I relaxed. I sat still, something borderline impossible for me to do. I gave my feet a nice rub with some delicious minty lotion and painted them up all pretty. And then I sat on my ass and watched the Olympics.

guess that sport...
I'm not really one for sitting in front of the TV, but when it comes to the Olympics, you can find me on the couch.

Anyways, there's the updates. Anyone else have different preventive measures that they swear by? Always looking for tips.

Cheers!


Saturday, July 28, 2012

I used to be an Olympian. Kind of.

I read something interesting the other day.

I read that recent Japanese research has found that ripe bananas (with brown spots) are actually really good for you, and have the ability to fight abnormal cells (cancer).

This intrigued me, mainly because I feel like ripe bananas tend to get a bad rap. Guilty as charged; I prefer them more on the green side versus brown. However, knowing this, when glancing at my bananas this morning when making a smoothie, I got happy that I was able to add some cancer-fighting action to my daily drink.



Anyways, what was this post suppose to be about? Oh yeah, how I used to by an Olympian.

Obviously that a semi-false statement. Let's correct it to be a little more true: I used to live, eat and train among Olympians. There we go.

whose that in the green ring? me.
I know I've mentioned this before, and that it's in the My Story section, but I couldn't help to feel extra proud while watching the opening ceremonies last night. Sidenote - did that opening sequence showing all of the amazing athletes make anyone else cry? #Guilty


Source


Spring 2010 I had the opportunity to intern at the Olympic Training Center out in Colorado Springs. It truly was a mind-blowing experience, even just to live in the dorms on the campus, dine at that state-of-the-art food hall three meals a day, and use the same workout facilities that some of these athletes we are watching over there in London used.

I got to swim in the same pool that Michael Phelps did.

No, that is not the pool.
Seriously though, aside from experiencing the sport administration side of things as an intern there, just seeing the day-to-day efforts these athletes put in was extremely humbling.


This is posted up at the Training Center. I love it.
Speaking of being humble, I've been trying to put forth effort the past two days in taking care of myself and listen to other's advice, and so have been doing all non-impact training. Yesterday I even managed to swim four consecutive laps in the pool, no stopping. I know that sounds easy, but for me it's not. I was quite proud.

I AM SO PROUD
So, as I sit here in my living room watching Phelps and Lochte tear it up in the pool over there with our Brit friends, I can't help but feel inspired to head over to the club and do some more laps today. I figure today should be fairly light, as I'll head out for 12 miles early tomorrow morning.

I can't remember the last time I ran 12 miles. Maybe sometime in May?

Cheers to a great weekend!


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Dabbling in ART


Public Service Announcement: Tomorrow, I’m going to be a featured blogger on Fit Blogger! Be sure to head over there and check it out. Click on the picture below to link to the website.

CLICK ME!
Moving on… yesterday, I had my first ART experience.

And I’m not talking about this kind of art:

Yes, I really did paint this.

While drinking a Blue Moon. Not too shabby?
ART stands for Active Release Techniques, and quite a few runners have steered me in this direction in regards to the plantar faciitis in my right heel. I went in with fairly high hopes, and left feeling confident… but a little rattled to be honest.

Source

Why am I currently still a little rattled? Read it and weep (or laugh).

This guy knows his stuff, no doubt about that. He’s treated tons of runners with the same nagging injury I have, and has gotten great results. He also really loves to hear himself talk.

He told me that my current mileage of about 30ish miles a week is high. I don’t see that number as high at all. When I told him I averaged 50 per week last summer, he acted like that was the most absurd thing in the world.

I never saw a problem with it. Most of it was run on Colorado trails, so it was lower impact.

This is one of my favorite place in THE WORLD to run. I would throw up if I could run there this weekend.
He started suggesting I look into triathlons as well, as cross training is a little less harsh.

Sure doc, hire someone to teach me how to swim and I’m in. Oh and you can pay the absurd race fees for triathlons as well. While you’re at it, want to buy me some bike shorts?

because right now I bike in my volleyball spandex.
The discussion we had during my basic examination went something like this:

Doc: “Whose your primary care doctor?”
Me: “I don’t have one, I recently moved out here.”
Doc: “Oh yea, what for?”
Me: “A job, and my boyfriend is out here as well.”
Doc: “What?! You shouldn’t be following anyone anywhere without a ring on your finger!”
ME: Gives him a long, blank stare. 
Doc: “How old are you guys?”
Me: “24.”
Doc: “Oh well hell, you guys are too young to be married! Definitely wait it out a few years.”

Gee, thanks for the love advice doc. Now fix my freaking foot.

All humor aside, I trust him. When I finally handed over my foot, he instantly put his thumb on the exact spot where it hurts. Everything he said made sense, and I walked out of there feeling (rattled) yet assured that he will be able to help me.

However, one thing I don’t like. I don’t like when people tell me to run less. He suggested that I bring down my mileage before coming back in for my first official treatment next week.

I went home and ran 7 miles. Come on bro, I have a marathon to train for. How can you possibly see that as a reasonable request?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Falling Apart


I’m falling apart. Literally.

Not in a horrible, unfixable way.  But in a “Hey Kait you aren’t training very smart and we hate you for it” kind of way, says my lower body. Hence why I'm going to this doctor today.

And hence why I’m meeting with this lady next week and discussing my desire to bring her on as my coach the next few months leading up to New York.
Hey Kait, you're pissing us off!

 But that’s not the WEIRD part of this post. Happy Hump Day,  by the way.

The weird part is, my tooth is falling apart.

fall 2007
I may have mentioned this before, but my sophomore year of college I managed to knock out half of my front tooth while diving for a ball during one of our volleyball matches. If I remember correctly, we were playing Toledo University. Ohhh, volleyball days. How I miss you. 



I got my mouth fixed shortly after (obviously) and since then typically didn't even remember that that bad boy was fake. Until last month, when part of it fell out.

Luckily, it was just small piece from the back of the cap. You can’t tell from the front, but I can certainly feel a small hole in my tooth now when I run my tongue over it.

Moral of the story? My mouth is falling apart. And I need to find a good dentist out here, in attempts to not look like a homeless bum when the rest of it finally does fall out. Let’s cross our fingers that this doesn’t happen before the wedding I’m in in a couple weeks.

no need to be concerned Danielle. it's all under control.
 Other weird bodily issues I have? Thanks to volleyball (once again) one of my tendons (or ligaments, I don’t know) in my left ankle is gone. It completely dissolved after rolling it/spraining it it so many times.

The result of this is that I have incredibly weak ankles, that click/crack anytime I walk/run. Just another reason why I typically prefer to run alone.

And last, but not least….

Movie theaters make me feel nauseous. All someone has to do is suggest going to a movie, and I instantly become nauseous. I still enjoying going to the occasional movie, but usually have to battle nausea the first 10 minutes of sitting in the theater. It started back in high school when we had to sit in the front row of the theater and I pretty quickly came down with motion sickness, and had to excuse myself to vomit in the ladies room.

That's my general feeling on the issue.

My body hasn’t forgotten that instance, and it literally took me years to be able to eat popcorn again outside of theaters. Wish I was kidding.

So there’s some weird bodily issues that I have. Anyone else have issues such as this? Please, do share.

Cheers!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Chi City Healing


My friends, I missed you! So excited to finally share my weekend with you all. 

best city in the world.
And man, do I have updates.

First thing’s first: I’m officially training for the New York Marathon. After landing at BWI yesterday morning around 8:30 and heading straight to work, I was seriously exhausted by the time I got home that evening. I’m going to blame it on my 3 AM wakeup call in order to catch my 5:55 AM flight.

on the car ride there.
Long story short, I had to give myself a serious pep talk to complete Day 1 of training. It was an easy 7, and I ended up feeling great by the time I was done.

But before I get too wrapped up in giving you a play by play of my training plan, let’s talk Chicago.

the bride-to-be and me
 Great trip as a whole. I really couldn’t have asked for anything more. Great time with both friends and family. For your viewing pleasure, I’ve put together a few random statistics on the weekend:

Number of sushi rolls eaten: About 4. Wouldn’t have been a date night with my lovely friend Lyndi without sushi.



Number of miles run: 3. With the sis, who I literally had to drag out the door. Who was also anti-picture.



However, my grandma was not anti-pic.

lookin' good grams
Number of beers consumed: Wouldn’t you like to know.

Number of times Danielle (the bachlorette) asked random men for a tampon: At least 4.

Number of times seeing my last name at U.S. Cellular field and feeling cool: Twice.




Number of sombreros worn: 1. For a good portion of Saturday night. And I received numerous compliments on it. 



In regards to the Bachelorette Party itself, I really don’t think it could have gone much more smoothly, all considered. And I think the bride-to-be would agree. We took a joy ride around the city in the limo (my first time in one), dined at a wonderful Mexican restaurant, attended a drag show and then danced the night away.

I didn’t lose anything. We didn't get thrown out of anywhere. And we made it home in one piece, shoes and all. Even if I didn't wear them all night.

oh sorry, does that gross you out? not me.
I even was up to catch the 10:30 AM train home to Crystal Lake that next morning. Please, be impressed.

And now, it’s back to reality. In all honesty, I’m looking forward to a slow-paced, uneventful week to get back on track work-wise, eating-wise, and training-wise.

Cheers!




Friday, July 20, 2012

Chi-Town Bound


Sweet home, Chicago. Boy, do I need this trip. Seeing some familiar faces this weekend is going to be freaking fantastic.

Chicago Skyline oh hey thanks for the pic sis
First, a short story. On Wednesday evening due to some pretty severe storms rolling through the area I took my workout indoors to the gym. I’m really not the biggest fan of a solid 60 minutes of cardio on machines anymore, but sometimes it’s necessary....

For my last 20 minutes I journeyed over to the StairMaster, and hit that bitch hard did something I’ve never done. I turned it up to a pretty high level, and instead of just stepping… I did like a slow jog type thing. It may have even been comparable to a skipping-type wrestling move, I'm not sure but some of the looks I was getting left me with that impression.


sucking in air
It was WAY harder than your typical Stairmaster climb, and left me super sweaty. 
  
Afterwards, I did some lifting and weighted abs:



I also had my last softball game of the season (I think?) this week, and I got a solid single to end out the year! It isn’t necessarily the ‘making contact’ part that is difficult for me, but getting it past the short stop; where I literally hit it every.single.time.

'hey andrew take a pic of me with my glove!'
It's hard when you're boyfriend, Mr. Baseball, is hitting bombs every game and your team happens to love him, while meanwhile I struggle to get on base.

Anywho.

I’m sure at this point you’re dying to know why I’m jetting off to Chicago this afternoon.  Well, I’ll spare you the anxiety and give you the 4-1-1.

One of my best, longest-standing friends who I wrote about in one of my first ever blog posts when she got engaged back in February has her bachelorette party this weekend. In Chi-Town USA. 

And me, being one of her lowly bridesmaids, wouldn’t miss it for the world!

aww a highschool throwback pic how presh.

The weekend as a whole will be full of catching up with fantastic friends from both high school and college, probably a few too many beers and treats, and if I had to take a gander, zero miles.

That's actually the specific reason why I chose to start my marathon training on this coming Monday opposed to this past one. No need to set myself up for failure. No need at all.

I wouldn’t expect to hear from me again until Monday.  As much as I love you guys, Chicago has my full attention this weekend. I'll try my hardest to get some blog-appropriate pics, yet as we know, bachelorette parties aren’t necessarily your typical G-rated movie type evening. Just saying.

Cheers to the beautiful bachelorette I’m celebrating this weekend!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Keeping off the LBs


In a stark contrast to last week, this week is freaking flying by for me. Can’t believe it’s already another (weird) Wednesday!

this seemed appropriate.

Piggy-backing off of what I started rambling about in yesterday’s post regarding workplace goodies, today I wrote up a little something about my (weird) tendencies that I have at work… in efforts to not let my sedentary-ness catch up with me.

kicking off the shoes at work
AKA how to avoid those extra LBs at work. It just so happens that I’m extremely passionate about this topic, specifically because of all the studies that continue to come out regarding how BAD sitting is for you. Some studies have even compared it to smoking –> no joke.
source

 For your own viewing pleasure, I will present these items in a list format. Let it be known these are my own opinions [things I do] that have been working fairly well for me so far.

Also let it be known I’m not making any of these things up. 

1.  Stairs. Simple concept. Avoid the elevator at all costs.

2. Stand up at least once an hour. At least.  I usually shoot for once every half hour. Even if you’re simply talking on the phone, or have a question to ask a coworker across the way; get your ass up and walk your pretty self over there. 
my work space

3.       Sometimes, usually about once a day, I’ll do a few body weight squats in the bathroom stall after peeing. I can’t believe I’m publicly admitting this as I realize a handful of my coworkers will likely read this. But yes, it’s true.

4.       If space/office environment allows, sit on a ball. Make sure you’re sitting up straight and that the ball is big enough for you… and keep your core engaged. 



5.       In order to promote myself getting up at least once every 60 minutes as well as good hydration, I try to maintain a pretty solid stream of liquids into my body. AKA, I drink coffe/water/tea all day. 

keeping the options open


      

 6.  Use your lunch breaks wisely. Unless you have a lunch date or something of the sorts, use lunch to take a few laps around the building, walk to a local park, etc. Sometimes if temperatures allow, I’ll use my lunch to go for a short jog.


7.  When you do have lunch dates with coworkers, plan ahead. When I know what restaurant we're going to, I typically check out the menu online beforehand to see the calories etc. for the meal options.

8. If possible, stand and work for periods of time. It isn’t the easiest option for me due to my use of dual monitors, but on occasion I will take my laptop and do some work standing at the edge of my cube. And as my coworker so eloquently put it,

“Kait you kind of creep me out when you stand over there.”
Long hair

9.       Like I mentioned yesterday, office treats are ever present. I typically give myself one ‘treat pass’ per week. Take that however you want to.

((I want you all to know it’s really bothering me that this list is comprised of 9 items, because I hate odd numbers. However for the sake of all of your precious time, I’m not going to make up a #10 simply to calm my OCD-ness.))

I realize this post might not be too out there for some of you, while others may now think I’m clinically insane. Nope, not insane. Just weird. Weird, and passionate about my health.

like this kinda passion
Also, a disclaimer: I realize that there will be busy days at work, when this stuff just isn’t possible. That shooting off emails and calling your coworkers will be necessary for the sake of saving time, instead of walking over to their desk.  I get that.

Hope you enjoyed, would love feedback and other healthy tactics you may use in the office.


 That’s it for now. I’m chi-town bound this weekend, and will give you all an update on that soon.

Cheers!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Fighting with Food



Today I waged an angry battle at the office. A battle against sugar.

I lost.

Hold up, rewind. I heard you guys wanted to watch a video from the concert of me singing in my horrific off-tune twang-like voice?

Ok, fine.


I have no idea who did that weird scream/shriek.


And a pic of me looking super cheesy in my boots? Sure why not.

nice face kait.

Anyways, back to my point. We had two birthdays today at the office. In case you missed it:

tweeeeeet
The donuts and bagels were parked at the cube across the way, and literally stared at me all morning. I gave them the finger back.

Double DDDDD

However, right around lunchtime I could no longer say no to the mini brownies and mini cupcakes, and I caved in. 

I can't say it wasn't worth it.

 Believe me, I'm all for the occasional indulgence. Nothing wrong with that in moderation. However, I can't help but notice how difficult it can be when working in an office setting. There is typically at least one occasion per week that people bring crap goodies in to share.

Personally, I try not to make it a habit because I know the way too much sugar/refined carbs effects me. AKA crappy ass runs, like the horrific one that I had after work. I'll also blame part of it on the high temps/humidity.

So, tonight after returning from my pathetic run, I decided to do two nice things for my body.

veggies


ice
I'm gonna call it a night folks. Expect something super weird tomorrow, as usual.

Oh and PS - If you're the praying type, say one for my close friend Sarah. She lost her mom yesterday. 
Cancer Sucks.

Cheers to finding a cure.