Last week was hard, to say the least.  So much happened, it felt much longer than an average week.

I have to say, I had a great weekend, filled with my in-laws (love!), moving (my sis-in-law, that is), my brother and his girlfriend (also love!), Spring Game, energetic little boys, and a nice chance to reunite with my long-lost husband who was out of town most of last week.  Frozen yogurt was consumed.  Really super double love the fro yo

This week is going to present some challenges, but I am ready for them :)

To that end, I started out my Monday with a great workout!  Here's what I did:

  • Warm-up: my mountain climber/jump up chin-up combo (4 sets, 8 repsx4sets)
  • Deadlifts with 125 lbs. on the trap bar, superset with side arm presses with 25 lb. dumbbells (3 sets)
  • Inclined crunches with a 10 lb. weight, superset with side arm raises with 10 lb. dumbbells (3 sets)
  • Farmer carries with 50 lb. dumbbells
Here's the plan for the week (and what we did this past weekend)

  • Past Saturday ('cause it was so tasty!): Crab legs, Filet & Lobster, grilled starburst eggplant, grilled zucchini, & grilled baby carrots.  Dessert?  Ben & Jerry's Vanilla Blueberry Graham Swirl Frozen Yogurt -- insanely good!
  • Sunday: Sauteed Ginger Lemon Chicken, broccoli, carrots, cherry tomatoes, and bow tie pasta (cooked it all ahead of time and then packed it up and had a picnic dinner at the playground.  Leftovers are today's lunch)
  • Monday: Creamy, herbed Brussels sprouts and chicken sausage
  • Tuesday: Chicken Parm Meatloaf Muffins & Salad
  • Wednesday: Baked Salmon, mac-n-cheese, and green beans
  • Thursday: Philly Cheese Peppers
  • Friday: Who the heck knows?!?!  Probably pizza.

So, I only had 20 minutes for my workout this morning.  Mondays are often tough for me to fit in my workout, and that was definitely the case today.  Since I only had 20 minutes, I tried hard to make it count!  Here's what I did:

Warm-up: 4 sets, where I did 8 mountain climbers and then one jump pull-up.  I did all of that 4 times and then took a short rest.  Then I repeated until I'd done the 4 sets.

Deadlifted 125 lbs. with the trap bar, superset with side arm presses with 25 lb. dumbbells.  I did 2 sets of 8 reps.  I was bummed I only had time for the 2 sets, but with the heavy weights, I had a nice sweat going!

As many stability ball crunches as I could do, which ended up being about 20.

Finally, I finished by doing as many push-ups as I could do, which was 20 and a personal best for me!!  I was so excited that I managed to knock out 20 really good, solid push-ups.  If I only had 20 minutes, why not do something I'm super proud of to really sort of turn it into an awesome workout.  Yay!

I saw this saying on Pinterest, and I've decided it's going to be my motto for the week:

Today is a good day, to have a good day.
We've got another busy week ahead, so went with another simple menu.  

  • Sunday: Chicken kabobs with pineapple, red pepper, & onion, leftover Indian rice and brown rice, and a skewer of grape tomatoes (yum!).  The leftovers have been my lunches for the past two days -- delish!
  • Monday: Chicken Parm Meatballs, spinach, steamed green beans -- these were a hit, especially with the boys.  I'll do a post about them soon.  These leftovers are going to be lunch tomorrow -
  • Tuesday: Sharkey's
  • Wednesday: Philly Cheese Peppers
  • Thursday: Fish with pasta primavera
  • Friday: Pizza & Movie Night

I saw this quote today on a blog (peaceloveandotes), and it resonated with how I am feeling today.  I was kind of down on myself this weekend, because I had a flat-out bad run on Saturday.

I had been saying it was a tough run, but I'm coming to acknowledge that it was just a bad run.  I didn't want it to be bad, and I tried as hard as I could to have it be positive, but it's time to admit it: it was just bad.

It was 20 miles, though, and I finished it, and that's the positive take-away.

I think it comes down to the fact that there just wasn't much about the run that I truly enjoyed.  The first half was fairly easy, and the weather was nice, and the route was fairly interesting.  And of course, I love my running buddy.  I'm not sure I would've made it through the run without Bob.  I don't know what I would've done without him, really.

But, I never had that elated, soaring, amazing feeling that I usually get when I'm running.

Somewhere around miles 13-15, my legs just starting aching.  From the balls of my feet, through to my hip flexors, everything just started hurting.  And it wasn't any kind of sharp, injury-type pain.  It was just the kind of pain you wouldn't be surprised to have after running for 15 miles or so.

As one might imagine, miles 15-20 were damn hard.  Mentally, I just couldn't distract myself from the pain.  It was all I could think about for about the last hour of our 3:40 minute run.

I had two mantras that I repeated a lot for those last, rough miles.

Sometimes I repeated those mantras out loud.

So where am I going with all of this?  Where is the pep talk?

It's this.  

I was so down on myself, and then I started thinking.

You know, that was just a hard, bad run.  There will be other bad runs in your life.  And it's getting through those bad runs that take you to the next step.  You learn from them, and you learn not to let them determine who you are or what you're going to do.  It was a training run, and it's going to train you to be stronger.

I had this realization while walking into work this morning.  The first half-marathon I did, was not a pleasant run.  It was really freakin' hard.  I got a stomach cramp about 1.5 miles in.  It was also painful and hard, and I remember feeling desperate for the finish line.  When it was all over, I didn't really feel a lot of joy at what I had accomplished.  Rather, I mostly just felt glad it was done and a little disappointed that I had not enjoyed the experience more.

However, the second half-marathon I did was amazing!  I felt great starting out, I felt great the whole time running.  Sure, by the end, I was getting sore and ready to be done, but it was just a very different experience.

So, I guess my pep talk to myself is to take your runs in stride.  Remember that, often, before success comes seeming failure.  Acknowledge that there will be bad runs in my future, but know that they will make me stronger.  Take those experiences and run with them.