This summer has been tough with all the heat and humidity here in the NE.  It has also been BUSY--the boys and I have yet to have an agenda free day--and we are longing for it---we need a week of NO AGENDA, no camp, no appointments, no work, no commitments--no rushing off to be somewhere.

We have been sneaking the beach in whenever we can.  We have a locker at Spring Lake where we can store our chairs, boogie boards, surf board, sand stuff--so finding the time is our only challenge.  Yesterday at the beach was CLASSIC.  We got there by 9:30 am (we had ortho appointments at 8 am so it worked out perfectly)--it was high tide going into low, so we parked ourselves at the waters edge.  There was barely anyone there, but being that it was a Friday--the crowds started rolling in by 1pm.  I HATE the beach on the weekends.  Even in Spring Lake the weekend crowd is too much for me---I grew up down at the Jersey Shore and it is common knowledge that you avoid the beach from Friday afternoon until Sunday afternoon.  Thankfully, since we had snagged the perfect spot, even as the beach filled--we still felt like we had it all to ourselves.  Here is a picture I snapped before the crowds (BENNIES) arrived.  The Atlantic was beautiful and COLD!

Here is a picture from Thursday--we were not so lucky with the weather---but had a great time anyway---I love the beach on a rainy day.
I was actually able to read at the beach and I dove into Jeff Galloway's "Marathon; You can do it"---I am intrigued by his run/walk approach.  Has anyone out there tried it?  Conor wants to run a 1/2 and I would like to run a full---we decided we would put his training program to the test.  We have only managed a few runs this summer and they have been less than spectacular.  We have struggled to push 2-3 miles out and have found that we have HAD to walk---especially on those super humid days.

We hit Bucks Mill trail during Ronan's soccer practice.  Our goal was to keep moving for at least 30-45 minutes and do a run/walk ratio of 3:1.  We also decided to follow Jeff's instruction to keep the pace slower (2 minutes slower).  I set my garmin to go off every minute (kinda annoying but the only way we could keep track of minutes) and we set off.  I have to say the walking breaks early and often kept me motivated.  I did not feel tired or spent.  Conor had some tummy issues and after 2 miles had to stop; he decided to watch his brother's scrimmage.  I was able to go 50 minutes and get 4 miles in.  I felt GREAT after the run---endorphin high galore.  I loved running through the wooded trail (sorry for the blurry photos--tried to take the pictures during our walk breaks).
I love running with my son (I am so proud of him).

We also found more trails that lead through a horse farm---I am sure we were not supposed to be there--but the horses won't tell (no he is not relieving himself--he found a gopher hole---we also found numerous deer, snake holes, and a variety of other woodsy stuff).
So---4 miles (longest run in a while)--feeling great and feeling as if I could have run 3 more (but I did not want to injury myself)--Should I be concerned about the SUPER SLOW pace?  Jeff claims that runners can actually improve their times with this run/walk approach???  I guess I will trust the process.  I imagine that as our endurance grows our pacing for the run and walk will improve.  I also buy into the fact that Jeff claims during a race the early and frequent walk breaks will give the runner the edge to finish faster than if no walk breaks were integrated.  Meaning if you had a 10 miles run planned and you ran/walked the first 7 miles--your last 3 miles could be a strong finish (with no walk breaks)--instead of shuffling along--which is what I end up doing.

I am willing to give this a try--because as I sit here writing this (the day after the run)--I still feel invigorated and I can not wait to get out there and do it again (it has been a while since I felt this way)---I AM MOTIVATED!


Parker House Fun Run 2010

Parker House 2 Mile Fun Run today in Sea Girt.  This was my first year running this race---remember, new runner since August 2009--so never had an interest before, but I can see this being an annual event.

Conor ran with me along with my brother, Amy (my future sister in law), and some Colts Neck Friends.  Here we are post race:

 I was worried about the heat (I know, I know--get over it--it is summer, what do I expect)--but rumor had it this was the hottest day of the summer.  I figured, I would be OK--after all it was only 2 miles and I could go slow.  My only goal was NO WALKING!  The last few weeks my runs have been short, sparce, slow and including walking--so this was going to be a feat.

I was able to keep moving and I could have sworn I was running a 10 min/mile pace--I refused to look at the Garmin (although I could not convince myself not to wear it---you know how I love that data).  I ended up finishing in 16:52 min--but the race was a little short of 2 miles (1.88 miles according to garmin)---all in all, not so bad.  Under cooler conditions I think I could have run faster.  

How do you handle the heat?

I know it is summer and the weather is supposed to be warm--but this heat/humidity seems excessive here in the NE.  It does not matter whether it is early, evening, or night time--it is plain HOT and the humidity just adds the extra kicker.

Conor and I have been working on our P90X.  Tony Horton, we are BRINGING IT.  We have decided to add more running into our regimen--our goal is to run every other day along with the P90X.  I have got to say, running is always hard for me---but I did not expect it to feel like I was starting from scratch.  I had gotten to the point where a 4-5 mile run was my short day--now a mile is a struggle.  Can I blame it on the heat?

We ran a few times on vacation and Con would ask to walk about .5 miles into the run and run/walk the rest---well, yesterday he kicked my butt.  He ran the whole 3 miles and could have gone further, while I did a RUN-WALK-RUN-HIKE-RUN-WALK-RUN combo---struggling to keep the nausea at bay.

Part of the trail is running through the woods and it was so beautiful.  I felt like I could have run around in there forever--it was so much cooler that the hot blaring sun at 6pm at night.

We ran around the polo field.  They were setting up for a polo match and the horses were being lead out of the trailers.  They were so pretty and regal looking.
If this heat and humidity does not break, I am going to have to find a way to deal with the heat (the treadmill is my least favorite option, but I will tackle it if I have to).


Home Sweet Home

I have fallen behind in my posts due to our annual trek to Florida.  Usually friends wonder, "Why Florida"---who travels to Fl in their right mind during the summer???  Well, this was our 9th annual trip there and the first time that it was actually cooler in Fl then back here in the NE.  My mom is from Scotland and her sister and my cousins (our only family on maternal side) reside in TX---we all meet in Fl every year.  My kids love it--time with their cousins and a week of swimming in the warm Atlantic.

We got to boogie board everyday--the water was amazingly warm and the currents/waves are never as strong as at the Jersey Shore--so no worries of rip currents while we were there.  Conor and I were able to do some of our P90X routines (we brought the laptop and bands) and we ran a couple of days while we were away.  Although we did not exercise everyday, I think we did pretty good for being on vacation (workouts posted to Dailymile, I love this site).

We ended up at starting the trip at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon.  It was so much fun and all my boys loved it.  I loved it too---I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would.  

We tried to eat well--but it is virtually impossible in an area where fast food and franchise restaurants overpopulate the state---thank god for our garmin---we were able to track down some out of the place Thai restaurants and whole foods options.  My kids have an aversion to fast food too--they will tell people that "we don't eat at McDonalds"---I love it!

I am happy to be home----whenever we go on vacation I turn into a "clean freak"--mopping, bed stripping, dusting dynamo--I LOVE LOVE LOVE the feeling of coming home to a clean house---Home Sweet Home!

P90X Day 25 Am I Getting Results?

Well, it is official---this is our first week of summer vacation and we have not found our Summer Groove--but we are getting there.  Unfortunately finding our Groove is at the expense of running--fortunately, I can still find ways to fit P90X into the schedule with the boys at home.  The past couple of days, Conor and I did the program before we headed off to the beach--it seems to be working out well.

There are definitely some workouts that I like better than others in the program and I am just now learning to like Tony's goofy sense of humor--finding it endearing more than annoying which is how I felt in the beginning.  I LOVE Kenpro, all the weight workouts, and plyometrics---but the Yoga drives me crazy.  I love yoga, but this workout is boring and I will gladly skip it and substitute something/anything else in it's place.  I know this is cheating--but a little manipulation can't be so bad.

Con and I have both noticed a difference and although I am not ready to take (or post) full body shots---(I am holding out for the muffin top to disappear)---here is an arm shot.  

I never had muscular arms--just skinny little twigs (my legs are freaky muscular but the arms--not so much)---so this is definitely new.