After you do the same exercises over and over, you create muscle memory, which can be good and bad. Good because you become more efficient but bad because you’re no longer making big fitness gains. I feel like the same thing happens with my emotional memory during the holiday season. I repeat a cycle of missing my mom, who absolutely loved Christmas, of getting overwhelmed by my kids constant “add this to my Christmas list” and fitting in all my training around parties, family time and the weather.

This last week, I decided to create new muscle and mind memories and remember just who the hell I am.

 

WEEK OF DECEMBER 5, 2016

RUNNING

I’m back bitches! The pep is back in my step and my legs feel like mine again. It took a lot of love and some patience but, this last week of running, my legs remembered the bad ass they belong too.

Monday: Fartlek run | 6.31 miles | 7:52 average pace

Wednesday: Speed work | 5 miles  with 4 x 100 meters @5:13 before Barre class

Friday: Tempo run with 4 x 5 minutes @6:40 – 5:53 before swim

Saturday: 1 hour long run | 9 miles

Total = 26.31

CYCLING

I’m back to basement dwelling on the trainer but I’m absolutely loving it! How is this possible? Because my legs and lungs feel great and I’ve been listening to Elite Minds by Dr. Stan Beecham while I ride. I wrote about how he taught me “better is the enemy of best” and listening to his mental strength wisdom while I’m training has an amazing effect on my ability to absorb his lessons. I don’t know why it’s taken me this long but I will be listening to motivational books while I ride from now on.

Tuesday: Strength 1/2 min intervals with low cadence | 15.8 miles

Thursday: Base build aerobic 10 min intervals | 17.7 miles

Total = 33.5 miles

SWIMMING

Things are looking up in the water as well. I had one really tough workout, one recovery workout and zero shoulder pain. I’ll call that a win.

Tuesday: 4 x 50s and 100s for speed on 45 seconds and 1:45 respectively | 2100 yards

Friday: Recovery swim after run | 1200 yards

Total = 3300 yards

GEAR

You all probably know by now that getting monthly boxes full of stuff you love in your mailbox is a thing. You can get a box filled with almost anything you’re passionate about – jewelry, clothing, pets, food – shipped to your house on a monthly basis for a nominal fee. In fact, one of my very first ambassadorships was for TheRunnerBox, which was obviously filled with goodies for runners. I loved it and loved representing them.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago when a company called StrideBox reached out to me asking if they could use one of my workouts as part of their December box. Well hell yes you can!

They even sent me a complimentary one:

And then I found out I have some awesome runner friends like Paria and Sarah who already get StrideBox and were super excited to see me repping the workout. Naturally.

I also know the adorable blogger who shared the recipe for Gingerbread Protein BitesLauren at Breathe Deeply and Smile. Well, who knew? Apparently everyone but me.

FUEL

As you know, I have been cooking up a storm. Seriously, I have and mostly it sucks but the end product is pretty great and, having ready to eat meals most days of the week is fantastic. However, in my never ending quest to simplify, it was Tina to the rescue!

One of her 17 gifts for runners, included a subscription to Daily Harvest Soups and Smoothies.

Who can say no to that face?

I just received my first shipment and my freezer is overloaded! I ordered them because you simply add a liquid, heat or blend and eat. Seems easy and delicious. I’ll report back.

Update: Run Fast, Eat Slow cookbook: I have made nothing because there are ingredients like “almond meal” and “grated Zucchini” so obviously I don’t have time for that right now! 

THINGS I LOVE

The shopping day my dad, brother and I take every year.

When my mom was at her sickest, the last Christmas she celebrated in 1992, she could barely get out of bed. She told my dad to take my brother and I shopping so we wouldn’t be upset, and she probably needed my dad to buy a ton of last minute presents since in 1992, there was no Amazon. Oh how that woman suffered on every level! But, I digress…

Since that first year, the three of us pick a day in December and go shopping together. We have done it though college, though marriages and kids and everything else and it is one of my most favorite days of the year. Obviously it’s less about the shopping and more about being together, just the three of us, talking about my mom, eating and drinking and remembering a time when it was just us.

This is one memory I want to keep forever. Thanks mom.

THINGS I DON’T LOVE AS MUCH

 

Anyone who takes their health and family for granted. See above.

READING

Obviously I’m listening to Elite Minds and I’m still making my way though Megyn Kelly’s book Settle for More so, I have an incredible gift guide instead:

KUHL Women’s Holiday Gift Guide | KUHL.com

Please, please, please give someone you love very much the Flight Jacket ($169) for Christmas. It is the best ever.

 

YOUTUBE

If you have not yet heard of this comedian, Sebastian Maniscalo, you are in for a treat. My brother introduced me to him and he’s seriously the funniest guy I have heard since Chris Rock’s Bring the Pain:

#ArentYouEmbarassed

Yes, I am.

RANDOM EXCHANGE OF THE WEEK

The following conversation happened at my local (and I mean local) post office when I went to get stamps for my holiday cards…

Me: I need holiday stamps.

Mailman: Oh ok! We have all of these but are out of the candles. *proceeds to show me four different kinds of religious stamps with Jesus or camels walking through the desert on them.*

Me: So, we’re going all religious this year?

Mailman; Well, that’s the reason for the season, right? gigantic goofy grin

Me: If that were true, you wouldn’t be out of the candle stamps, would you?

Mailman: *stands there, blinking*

I took the ones with the camels walking though the desert following the north star on them. 

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