The last time I posted was over two months ago?! How the heck did that happen? Between the holidays, getting sick for a few weeks, running the Honolulu Marathon with my sister (and spending a week in paradise), I’m finally getting back into the swing of things. I’m sure everyone is feeling the same way these days — in Chicago, we’re mostly feeling cold and depressed about the crazy negative temps and too many treadmill runs.
Reading: All The Light We Cannot See. My mom recommended this book to me before I left for Honolulu. (And along with the other 2 books I bought for the trip, not one of them was read!) I’m about halfway through it and I’m sucked in. I like books that flip between two different view points — and you know that at some point the characters’ lives are going to intersect. The chapters are short, but you really get to know each character – and the writing is absolutely beautiful. I’ve seen this book on a lot of ‘Top Books of 2014’ lists so the ending has to be good, right? I’m also going to make more of an effort to read regularly this year. I read almost 30 books in 2013 and only 12 last year – not sure when the habit kind of dropped off, but I’ve felt like snuggling up with a good book lately and started to make a list of books I want to read this year. [If you could recommend ONE book to anyone in the world, what would it be. Yes, just ONE.]
Dreaming about: Spring of speed! After 5 consecutive marathon training cycles (Twin Cities 2012, Boston 2013, Grand Rapids 2013 [injury], Boston 2014, Indy Monumental 2014], I decided to take this spring to focus on shorter distances. It’s been so long since I dedicated a cycle to a half marathon and I’m excited to see what happens when I do. My PR at the NYC Half last spring was so much fun and I have a feeling I have more speed in these legs somewhere. I’ve been lucky enough to PR my half as part of marathon training the past few years. I’m all signed up for the Shamrock Shuffle 8k in Chicago, Cherry Blossom 10 in DC, and the Bayshore Half in Traverse City, MI. I’d like to throw in a 5k or 10k at some point, but that may be difficult to squeeze in, especially with the weather conditions in Chicago. We have a fair number of short distance local races in the spring, but ice and snow are always a concern and I’d like to avoid injuring myself. 🙂 I’ve been working on putting the final touches on my training plan. Hope it’s a smart and tactical plan without being too conservative. I’m slowly easing back in to running regularly. I took a full 2 weeks off all exercise following Honolulu. I didn’t have any motivation to get back to it quickly and I know that I put more stress on my body than I ever have with 6 weeks between my PR at Monumental and Honolulu. My knee (the infamous knee!) was cranky after Honolulu and I totally babied (baby’d? LOLZ) it to let the inflammation settle down. I’m focusing a lot on core and strength work, and adding in 4-5 runs per week for the next month. I’m hoping my patience pays off and I feel 100% ready to dive into speed work and tough tempos in February.
Can’t stop laughing about: this video of my nephew on Christmas Day. He’s a pancake lover and he had us all cracking up. I mean, that little shoulder shrug totally says, “oh man, these are yummy!” doesn’t it?
Can’t get enough of: Live DJ spin class at my gym. Seriously, I feel like every time I go to this class I have a near religious experience and all I wanna do is hug people and give high-5s. The instructor and the DJ are (I’m 97% sure) dating and I swear I wanna be their best friend. Mandee, the instructor, is no-nonsense and she pushes you without being all corny about it (you know what I’m talking about if you’ve ever had a bad spin instructor). It’s a really difficult class despite being 50 minutes and I’m excited to squeeze this into my training plan when I can the next couple of months. There was no way I could commit to this class every week if I were training for a spring 26.2, so I’m excited to make this routine. Anyone else always choose Bike #26?
Playing: Scrabble with The Man. We used to play this all the time, the first few years we dated. Back then, I think we played it so often because we were poor college students and didn’t have money to go out (much). My family always played it when I was younger and things could get quite competitive. (That’s you, Mom.) Manny and I are making a routine of playing it on Friday nights. Helloooooo game night. He actually beat me by 3 freaking points last week because he blocked a FORTY-EIGHT POINT WORD that I had queued up! Rage. I’ll get him next round.
Reminiscing about: Hawaii. We flew back from Honolulu 2.5 weeks ago but it feels like it’s been months (time warp = holidaaaaaze). I’m not sure I’ve ever been so relaxed before. It was such a fun week with both of my sisters, Manny, Chanthana, and Kim. We left feeling like we did everything we wanted to do, like we didn’t miss out on anything. I promise to do a proper recap of both the marathon (#6!!!) and the rest of the trip soon – there’s lots to share (namely, how freaking proud I am of my sister’s 26.2 debut in crazy conditions!)
What have you been up to?