Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Twist it up Tuesday

In an effort to get out the noise, get out the funk, I decided to switch up my Tuesday routine yesterday and try something different and (kinda) exciting. Since I sat in the hot tub at the Perinton Rec Center last Tuesday and watched Molly and Rob do laps, I got inspired. No, no... not to don a teeny bikini, but to take advantage of the work out facilities while my peeps did their thing. In a weird coincidence, Evan just happened to be working out while we were there and so he and I decided to go together this week. Which was a good thing, because it was freezing and snowy out. I need to grow my extra fur layer for winter running, it hasn't come in yet.

Sitting in the hot tub sounds way better then
running in the cold, right?

So Molly and Rob were set to do laps and Evan & I would work out. Since lap time started later, I picked up Evan and Rob & Molly were supposed to come separate. Evan and I started on the  treadmills, which have their own TV's!!!

The view also overlooks the pool area and we got to watch all the cute babies taking their swim lessons. Nothing like some soggy diapers to make you want to jump in for a round of Marco Polo. We decided to do 30 minutes.

Woah, I have no neck from this angle,
I have to work on my selfies.

Then I quickly remembered why I hate the treadmill so much! Even though Evan and I were thoroughly engaged in an episode of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, how has he never seen this before, I was bored and wanted to be done five minutes into it.

Evan was having a great time.

When the torture was over I realized my results were lack luster. I needed to redeem myself so we headed over to the Erg.

Evan is  a Crew-ber, not sure if that is a term, but he is a member of Fairport's crew team. So the erg is NBD. That's text talk for "no big deal" for you grandpa's out there. I strapped in and got to work. Taking some breaks here and there, this rowing stuff is hard, in the end I did ten minutes and really enjoyed it. While I was finishing up (ie. catching my breathe and trying not to faint) Rob walked down the stairs with his swim stuff. He actually seemed kind of impressed with my erg stats, and since he loves rowing at CrossFit I felt great!!

So even though I have a gym membership and could have just gone to the RAC, I thought having a different workout partner and switching it up would keep me interested, it definitely did. But I still hate that treadmill.

Did my post on Lululemon get your yoga pants in a bunch? Check out the latest...

1. Mr. CEO apologizes for blaming the female body for the breakdown of their product.

2. Lululemon is so resourceful (or cheap) that they took their recalled (see through) yoga pants and just added mesh and extra fabric to them and put them back on the rack!! Dubbing them the "Second Chance Pant". They did give you a six dollar discount, now they only cost $92 bucks.   

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Race Report- Stars & Stripes Veterun 5k

I first heard about this race in 2011, which also happened to be its inaugural year! Rob works for Clark CSM and created the logo you see above. The first year I ran with him and his boss Glenn. Rob actually wound up being my rabbit and I PR'd, even though the course is challenging with lots of rolling hills. This year I was way slower, but I am getting ahead of myself here!

Rob & Me - 2011

Glenn & Rob- 2011

I signed up for the third year in a row thinking that Rob would run with me again, but he couldn't. According to their FB page, the race is organized by 5 or 6 families from the Honeoye Falls area, with a ton of help from their friends and the Rochester community. The families all have ties to the military in some way and really wanted to draw attention to the true meaning of why we have off of work or school for Veterans' Day. Proceeds from the race entry and sponsors go to support Honor Flight, which is a program to honor those who served by flying them to Washington DC to see the monuments created for them. According to their FB page they were able to donate $21,050 from the first two years of the race.

This years shirt was by far my favorite.

In addition to supporting a great cause, I love that I can take part in a community event that feels like a small town family fun run. They have always started the race by thanking the Veterans in attendance and they discuss the experience of Honor Flight, which I didn't even know existed until I started participating in this race. This year they also read a poem written by a veteran who was able to participate in the Honor Flight program. I would be lying if I told you I didn't tear up and think about my own family members who have served. I also enjoy that they tend to have young people sing the National Anthem and then everyone walks en mass to the start line and the gun goes off. There is something very ceremonial about the start of this race and I just love it! I feel like I am part of something bigger.

Inside the lodge keeping warm.

The fireplace is a nice touch!

Rob's logo- awards I assume.

I realized when I was pulling into Mendon Ponds that I forgot my Garmin and we all know that when you don't record it on your Garmin, it might as well have not happened, so I was bummed! I also know how hilly this course is and so I was worried about not being able to keep my pace in check. 

Listening to the MC

So cool, and he kicked my butt!

The gun went off and I started running, up hill. I felt like I went out too fast and when I got to the 1 mile mark there was no one reading splits, I am not sure if anyone was supposed to be, but this just reminded me how dumb I was for forgetting the Garmin. I continued on to the rolling hills and slowed at the water station. I also pulled over a little after that because I had a rock in my shoe. I feel like this happens more and more to me, especially at Mendon Ponds. Since the course is an out and back eventually the leaders zoomed by in the opposite direction and I was able to cheer on some familiar faces. There was definitely more walking breaks on the way back and I just tried to make sure I stayed even with the people in front of me and tried to not let any one pass me. This worked really well until I was going back and forth with these two young girls and they totally killed it on the downhill towards the finish line. Oh well. I officially clocked in my worst Veterun 5k time, but I am not in the same running shape compared to the previous two years. If anything, it is fantastic motivation to try to improve for next year!

I love the downhill finish, kinda makes
up for the uphill start, kinda! 

Happy to be done and have another 3-peat race!

The Tom Wahl's food truck was there this year and every runner got a free lunch! It smelled so good. I decided to skip the line and meet Rob for a healthier lunch. Even though Mendon Ponds is a killer course it pales into comparison to what a lot of service men and women have experienced in training and combat. So I can suck it up for a wonderful cause. This race is so well organized and truly feels like a family/community effort. I love that most military members represent their branch in clothing or uniform and that the race results even list their branch and time served, really cool. 

One more thing that really hit home for me was when it was mentioned to go up and thank and shake the hand of any Veteran that you may see out at the grocery store, post office or out to eat. The speaker said that will make their day more then we understand. I witnessed this over the Summer when I was at Dunkin Donuts, because where else would I be. I saw a gentleman go up to a man who was wearing a hat saying he had served in one of our wars. He thanked the gentleman for his service and shook his hand. In that moment you could just feel how proud that Veteran was and he just beamed. When I witnessed that, I thought how much a simple, easy gesture can really make someone's day.  

Monday, November 11, 2013

When life gives you lemons, try to squeeze your big butt into them?

Lately there has been more and more written/said about the Lululemon brand and their transparent yoga pants and exclusion of the plus-size woman. I have sort of ignored all the hoopla, but it is becoming harder and harder to claim ignorance when the founder of the company, basically blames the female body for the breakdown of their product. HUH?!?! I have purchased and received gifts of Lulu since I started running. They are pricey, but I have never had an issue with the quality of anything breaking down. I have three jackets/hoodies, a pair of running tights and capri pants that I have used for yoga or lounging, and a long sleeve shirt.



I really do love all of my Lulu gear. It is comfortable, washes well, works well in tough situations (ie. couch time or running in freezing Rochester winters) and I feel good when I wear it. I know that may sound strange, but I am sure you have a favorite article of clothing that just makes everything right in the world while you are wearing it. Now, I have much less expensive athletic wear that I have purchased at Target or Marshall's or have gotten with a race entry, that is equally as comfortable and has worn well over my last three years of running.

Where I do struggle with the Lululemon brand is in its sizing. I do not have the typical runner body and this body changes easily depending on what I am putting in my system and what I am training for. What?! You can't train for a cookie eating contest and expect to fit into your body hugging athletic gear, what is wrong with the world! Not only does Lulu clothing only go up to a size 12, it is very rare to be able to find a size 12 in the product and style you want. And is the "12" even a realistic 12, probably not. The kicker, is that Lulu does this on purpose, because the the plus-sized customer isn't someone who they want representing their brand. We aren't part of their demographic, and they admit this. Out loud. To play devil's advocate though, if you walk through your typical mall, there are stores that you simply will not go into because you don't fit into the demographic. Am I going to shop in Hot Topic or Abercrombie and Fitch, probably not. Are the young and skinny going to step into a Lane Bryant or Christopher and Banks, doubt it. So why does Lulu get in trouble when they are simply doing what most stores in the mall do? Is it because the chauvinistic, male co-founder (spokesperson) of the company comes off as a douche bag? Here's another little gem from Wilson: "It takes 30% more fabric to create plus-size clothes, meaning that he would have have to charge a higher price for them. Something that Wilson said he would never do because plus-size people are sensitive and the company would feel intense fallout from the community." Sensitive?!? So what is your excuse for selling $98 stretchy pants to skinny people, you have no problem doing that. If you haven't been able to tell already, I am struggling with this whole topic/issue. An article I read recently said that consumers are expected to spend about $332 million on athletic wear sold at plus-size women's clothing stores this year. That is a crazy number! In fact, the article went on to say that the plus-size apparel industry is worth about $14 billion. So If Lulu chooses to not be a part of it, just to protect the image that only skinny people should be squeezing their butt into transparent yoga pants, then so be it. Maybe that is why analysts are seeing their growth slow. Don't I sound so smart?!

Taken from Lulu Rochester FB page.

The Rochester Lululemon "showroom" recently shut its doors to make room for a bigger and better full size store later this month. Will I go and check it out? Probably. I am actually more curious than ever to see what the stock is of their size 10's and 12's. Naively, I used to think maybe they didn't have many "larger" sizes because they were just a showroom, which offered limited amounts of their products. I guess I'll find out the truth soon enough, even though I probably already know the answer. If you are interested in a male perspective on the Lululemon issue, check out this link.

Have you ever boycotted a store/product because of the company's philosophy?

Stars and Stripes Veterun 5k Race Report coming soon! 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Ton of Fun- Week Six (Half Way)

Okay, something is definitely up this week. I don't know if it is mental, physical, cosmic, spiritual (as in someone has taken over my body) but I am in a funk. A funkadelic, Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, Funky Cole Medina, kinda funk. Okay, now that I have checked all the "funks" to make sure I keep the blog PG, please tell me it isn't just me? Is it the weather, the change of the clocks, was some sort of tired/lazy spell cast on me? It is probably none of these things, I probably just need to make some positive changes and get out of the funk on my own, but it's difficult. If you haven't guessed it already in all of my funkiness, I gained one pound this week, which is WAY better then I thought it was going to be.

Is it possible to have Spring Fever when you haven't
gone through winter yet?

My week started with an awesome, new to me, 5k last Saturday and a lovely full body massage at Shear Ego. Compliments of Rob for my birthday. He made a good point that if he buys me gift certificates for them, then he doesn't have to do them. Sneaky, but smart. So it would seem as though my week was headed in the right direction. But by Monday night I was laying on the couch feeling exhausted, not quite feeling right and went to bed in the middle of one of my favorite TV shows. Thank god for DVR. Tuesday I felt a little spark of inspiration and knew that if I didn't run as soon as I got home I could very well get swallowed by the couch again. So I skipped the Cobb's Hill run and decided I would kill two birds with one stone and run to the polls to vote! I thought this was a good idea until I arrived at the location and stood in the privacy voting area with my ballot and proceeded to sweat all over the counter, whoopsy! I wound up running a little over two miles, not much, but I was happy to be outside on a beautiful fall day.

The view along the way.

I wish someone gave me a sticker
every time I went for a run!

Wednesday I packed my gym bag to go to my weekly spin class and I just didn't have the energy or desire to go. Instead I went home, cleaned the kitchen, made dinner and did laundry. At least I got some stuff done that needed to get done, but this didn't help my energy level or mood. Exercising and eating right is like a double edge Ginsu knife, when you do it, you feel great and have high energy. But when you are in Funkytown and can't escape, the last thing you feel like doing is sweating it out, but that is probably what you need to do the most! 

Thursday is my typical weigh-in day at FF and for the first time in 7 weeks I did not do an official weigh-in. I had other errands and priorities that got in the way, and even though I could have made the time with a little more effort, I just didn't. So I weighed in at home and recorded my weight in My Fitness Pal, which I do every week regardless of my progress. It keeps me honest since not every week is going to be rainbows and roses. So there you have it, week five, in all of its funktastic glory!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Race Report- East Ave Grocery Run

Have I mentioned how much I love fall/winter 5k season?! It started with the Iron Angel 5k and continued last week with Pumpkins in the Park, another race I was able to 3-peat, this time along side my Dad. This week I did a new race, well new for me, the East Ave Grocery Run 5k!!

I got a text on Thursday from Molly asking if I wanted to join her for her run-iversary race. Molly started her running journey two years ago when she trained for a 5k through Medved. Her graduation race was The Grocery Run. I have heard of the race but never had the ambition to run it myself. So when she asked if I wanted to join in I looked up the race info, printed an application and set the alarm. Even though it sounds like I am just being a great running friend there was one tiny selfish reason I obliged so easily. You see, I added up my potential race mileage for 2013 and I would be about 3 miles under my number for 2012. So one more 5k would give me the little nudge that I needed.

It kind of felt good to know absolutely nothing about this race and to just jump in blindly. I joked on my FB page that I got suckered into paying to run on streets I could run on for free, but the entire race fee goes to the Third Presbyterian Church and Foodlink which work together to feed the hungry of Rochester. Plus the course was dubbed as flat and fast. They forget to tell you that you have to have fast legs to run fast, but it still sounds good. So far everything about this race sounded fantastic, until I walked out to meet Molly and discovered it was raining! By the time we got downtown it had cleared up though. The first thing I noticed was lots of colorful signs  indicating all of the lots for parking. This was very helpful. We found a spot quickly and headed towards to church the register. Instantly we were greeted by tons of smiling and welcoming volunteers who pointed us in the right direction. In addition to the friendly people guiding you, they had bright signage everywhere!

Couldn't get lost if you tried.

Registration was super easy, there wasn't even a line. The shirts were pretty cool and I was wishing I had signed up ahead of time to get one.

In addition to having tons of bathrooms they even offered coffee and hot chocolate.

After getting our bibs and saying hi to some friendly running peeps, we headed outside to check things out. Molly told me that if we had brought canned goods we would have gotten a free Nalgene bottle. Again, another disadvantage to jumping into a race blindly, oh well.

We saw lots of people in food related clothing, I guess there was a contest if you came dressed up and even some race mascots.

Taken from the Grocery Run FB page. 

We then headed to the start and I ran into one of my students. I wished her good luck and then we were off! There were tons of spectators and the weather had cleared up nicely. I briefly thought that I had maybe dressed too warmly, but there was nothing to do about it now.

Lots of Wegmans Peeps racing!

Here we go...

We started our pretty speedy, well speedy for us, but I felt good so I just kept pushing on. About 5 minutes in we started seeing the leaders near the one mile mark. Seriously?! On our way to the one mile mark we passed two areas where the House of Guitars had sponsored music, how cool to have blasting music during a 5k. Great race amenity! 

Race photo from the Grocery Run's FB page!
Molly's on the right and I am next to her.

I hit the one mile mark at 11:32, again pretty quick for my typical run lately. I still felt okay so I kept on pushing. I walked through the water station and thanked the volunteers as I went. I did the second mile in 11:41 and was feeling my calves begin to tighten up. I thought my third mile was my slowest, since I took a couple very short walk breaks but it came up at 11:35. It was also during this mile that I really started over heating and having my glasses fog up. I could have done without my jacket for sure. I saw the finish banner on the horizon and I tried to push it to come in under 36 minutes but I wound up coming in at 36:01. If only I had gone quicker through the water station, oh well, still my best time since February!!!!!! I congratulated my student, who had finished right in front of me and waited & cheered Molly in, a little over a minute after I finished. We headed over to the refreshment tent, where they had a HUGE spread to enjoy. Even though we didn't eat anything I did take a chocolate milk for the road.

Emily and Molly.


I loved this race and am so glad Molly asked me to join her. I would do it again for sure! It was so well organized, the course was great, there were even a lot of spectators out and about. I also enjoyed that this race had people of all sorts of abilities participating. I was surprised to see so many kids, families and walkers out to support the cause. This was my 46th race and it put me at 103 race miles for 2013 and I still have 3-4 more 5k's to run. I also spent some time this week preparing my half marathon training program for the Lake Effect Half in February 2014. I'll post on my plan later in the month. I'll officially start training at the beginning of December. More running stuff for me to blab about, aren't you lucky. 

  When was the last time you tried a new race?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Ton of Fun- Week Five

Another week done and I am down 4 pounds in total. I would have thought at this point I would have lost more weight, but I am actually pretty proud that my weight is where it is at. Obviously I would like to lose more weight, but prior to joining the challenge it was slowly creeping higher and higher since the end of marathon training. Here is an abbreviated look at week five by the day!

Friday- Halloween parade with my sister and her family. Went out to dinner with my parents.

Saturday- Pumpkins in the Park with my Dad. 

Sunday- Watched Ainsley and enjoyed a yummy beef stew made by my sister. 

Monday- Yoga at Molly's Yoga Corner. This was the last class in the session so it was restorative, which is like a giant relaxing stretch fest. Oh yea! 

Tuesday- Planned to run hill repeats and decided to run the hood instead. Then sat on the couch too long, got too dark too early and didn't run at all. Whoops. 

Wednesday- Spin class; Halloween style. Complete with black light, halloween trivia and candy. Yup, I earned a York Peppermint Patty. 

Thursday- At school I decided to dress up as a marathon runner, complete with finishers jacket, bib, race medal and running visor. Very original! Weigh-in and Half Moon salad. Handing out candy and enjoying some quality niece and nephew time. 

Ever been happy with yourself for accomplishing something, even if it didn't go as perfect as you hoped?

I think we all need more of this!