Posts Tagged ‘running’

Today’s post is brought to you by Maya from American Gourmande! Maya is working as a nanny in Hawaii. I love reading about her adventures while there, but also about her marathon training. Maya is training for a marathon, just as I am; and last week ran her 20 miler. Take it away Maya!


Hello Whit’s Getting Fit readers! I’m Maya, and I have a little foodie and running blog, American Gourmande.

When Whitney asked for guest bloggers, I knew I wanted to contribute. Like Whitney, I am training for my first marathon. On December 13, I will embark the 26.2 mile journey to the finish line of the Honolulu Marathon.

If you told me last year that I would be running 40 miles a week, and enjoy it, I would have laughed. Running was a chore. Exercise. A way to burn a few hundred calories, sweat, and then move on with my day. Even as a cross country runner, running was torturous.

It wasn’t until I studied abroad in French speaking Belgium that I gained an appreciation for running. In Belgium it seemed that people didn’t believe in gyms or exercising. Even on a beautiful day, there were very few joggers in the park.

After about a month of no exercise, I craved movement. I needed the endorphins to lift my spirits. My aerobic options were limited, so I laced up my sneakers and headed out the door.

I didn’t know my pace, or how many miles I ran. But as the seasons changed, I ran at least 3 or 4 times a week. I did it mainly to stay sane. Running became therapeutic. It was time to myself to think about recent events, sort through problems, and reflect. Bonus: it’s a natural mood booster and running helped me survive Belgium’s coldest winter in years.

When I returned to the United States, I had already cultivated a love for running. My peak mileage at the time was six miles. Even this past summer, running a half marathon seemed like a major goal, one in which I would need many months to train.

I moved to Hawaii in early September and joined local running clubs for group runs. Many members were training for the Honolulu marathon, and slowly the idea grew on me. It seemed like the perfect challenge and a souvenir of my time in Hawaii.

Only three months ago, a 7 mile run seemed long. A half marathon felt like a lofty goal. Now I run 13 miles or more on an ordinary long run training day. I average 35-40 miles a week, and completed my longest training run last weekend of 20 miles.

This all seems very difficult to many, and I completely understand, as fairly recently I felt the same. However, I’ve found that the biggest obstacle in marathon training is mental. Of course, marathon training requires a base line of fitness. You can’t jump off the couch one day and expect to run 10+ miles the next. But if you are capable of six mile runs, I am fairly confident that with proper training and care, you can conquer 26.2 miles.

Just because you are capable of marathon training doesn’t mean that you should want to. DEFINITELY do not should feel pressure to. If you want to train a marathon, do so for yourself and no one else. And please, don’t do it for weight loss. Do it because you love running and want to see how far it goes.

And if running ain’t your thang, there are plenty of other physical challenges you can pursue. Like doing 50 consecutive push-ups, biking 100 miles, doing a head stand or back bend in yoga.

During my 20 mile run last Sunday I started to hit a wall by mile 15. I could only overcome that wall mentally. I imagined my Garmin reading 20 miles and willed my legs to move. At the end of the day, all these physical challenges demand a lot of your body. But they also require 110% of you mentally. You need to believe in yourself fully to make your physical challenge possible.

Most importantly, whatever physical challenge you decide to undertake, make sure you love it! And good luck!


The smile on my face is 100% genuine. This is during a long run after taking a week off from running to prevent injury. I was so happy to be hitting the pavement again!


Thank you so much for sharing your story Maya! One question: Where did you find that cute running outfit?


Read Full Post »

I did it!

Today I ran 20 miles, and it felt SO AWESOME!

DSC_0028 DSC_0029

10 + 10 = 20! [PS: Don’t you like my free Elevation tee?]

I was up at 5:30 and fixed a banana w/ PB for breakfast.


DSC_0024 DSC_0026

Glory in a skin.

Then I was off to the Dowd YMCA to meet up with the other ‘marathon preview runners’ for the second half of our Thunder Road preview run. Good news Sarah + Emily! The last half is pretty much flat! It was so awesome!

The first 13 miles I ran today went through uptown, NoDa [!!!] and Midtown, some of my favorite areas of Charlotte. I’m really excited for the second half of the race now!

I lucked up on the last 7 miles. I thought I was going to have to run it alone, but I had my iPod, and I was gearing myself up for it when I got back to the Y. As I was walking to my car for more water a guy said ‘Good job!’ I noticed he was filling up his water bottles, so I inquired as to whether he was running extra. Guess what? HE WAS!

I ran the last 7 miles with David, his wife Katie and their friend Evelyn. Evelyn had a Garmin, so it made it SO EASY. [I really HAVE to invest in one of those!] They ran about the same pace I did, and it was really nice getting to know them. I hope to see them at the marathon! Maybe we can encourage each other in the race too. David was a great motivator! He certainly kept everyone’s spirits up, which I needed, especially in those last two miles.

Thanks guys, for letting me run with you! I really appreciated it! 😀

I came home took an ice bath and fixed up some green power:



Fave cup.


Green goop.

  • frozen naner
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • almond milk
  • ice
  • spinach [green power!]

Now what to do with the rest of my day? Mere is at the track, and she wants me to come watch the boys do their thang, but I just wanna dance.

20 mile run!

Read Full Post »

[Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Rather PETA friendly, no? 😉 ]


I almost forgot about Katy + Michelle’s Vegan-4-A-Day challenge this morning. I was just about to fry up an egg when it popped in my brain.

So pumpkin oatmeal shall have to suffice.


It did.

  • 1/2 cup pumpkin [Libby’s!!!]
  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 1/2 banana
  • water
  • pumpkin spice
  • agave syrup

Licked the bowl in fact.

Lonchi was a little harder.

I reeeeaaaallllly [yes that bad] wanted my leftover tuna salad. But I packed black beans instead. I didn’t really want them cold, so I made a makeshift black bean burger on the spur of the moment.


Messy bowl of Heaven.

  • salsa
  • black beans
  • romaine
  • ketchup [it was vegan!]

After scarfing that down I boot scoot n’ boogied over to the barber shop. Ok, not really the barber shop. It’s a legit hair salon where I get my locks trimmed. I ♥ my hairdresser. Seriously, if you are in the area and need a hair stylist, convo me. [Convo me?!?! Regretsy much?] She has been doing my hair for 2+ years now. That’s longer than my longest romantic relationship. She informed me that I had not gotten my hair cut since August 11th! I did a little researching of my own, and guess what? She was right! I guess that’s why I’ve been sporting Medusa-like locks for the past month and a half.

It’s looking much better now!

DSC_0093 DSC_0099-1

I’ll have to do something about that camera in my face later. Also we may need to do something about the lighting in our bathroom at work. Fugly, it is.

Handy dandy fact. There is a Starbucks within spittin’ distance of my hair salon. I picked up a peppermint mocha for my coworker and a soy misto for meself. I’m nice like that.


New love.

And I noshed on a pear.



After work I ran to the gym and ran on the treadmill. 6.2 sweaty miles later, I was done! True fact: My feet have been hurting me pretty badly since my long run Saturday, but I didn’t want to complain about it on here. I figured with me being sick that was enough complaining from the peanut gallery. Anyway, I was a bit worried about it, perhaps overly so. Good thing for me, my run today was lovely. It felt like a little massage on my feet the whole time. LOVE.

I was struck with a dilemma for dinner.

What was quick + vegan? And then I saw the shiny lights of Chipotle!

[Insert generic picture of Chipotle sign here]


Vegetarian Burrito Bowl, you shall be mine!

  • rice
  • black beans [twice today!]
  • corn salsa
  • regular salsa
  • guacamole
  • lettuce


History. I tucked that away in about 5 seconds.

So there you have it ladies + gents! My vegan eats for the day, plus the added bonus of my new haircut.

And that’s a wrap!

[Disclaimer: I am not, nor do I plan to become a vegan in the near future. This was just for fun!]

Read Full Post »

DSC_0168 DSC_0163


I ran my half and not only hit goal time, I now really feel like I’m ready for a marathon. Having a decent time will do that to ya!

I beat my previous half time of 2:15:48 by almost 5 minutes!

I was SO HAPPY with my time, mainly because my long runs lately just haven’t been that great. It helps so much to have the support of a huge crowd and everyone having the same common goal.

I found out that they offer preview runs for my marathon for the next two weeks, so I immediately signed up. They are both just half distances, but having company for at least part of the way on my 18 and 20 milers will make a huge difference!

Excited this morning, I was up at 5:30 am and ready to go!

DSC_0120 DSC_0121

DSC_0128 DSC_0129

It was freezing outside! If you call 34 degrees freezing that is. I am aware that most people do not. But those people probably also do not live in Charlotte. 😉

I had a quick breakfast of PB toast + coffee to warm me up.


The race fuel of champions.

And I packed my Sharkies:


Then I was off!

I got to the race site around 6:45, so after I picked up my chip I had about an hour to kill, wherein I occupied myself on facebook and twitter. Thank you guys SO much for your support. I cannot even begin to express how much it means to me. You are all so awesome!

The race started at 7:40, and I was toward the back of the pack, so I lost about a minute or so in start time. Miles 1-6 flew by! Before I knew it, we were crossing the 10k split and I was pacing 9:30 miles the whole way. I honestly felt SO GOOD!

Mile 7 started to wear on me though, and I slowed to a steady 10 minute mile for the next 3 miles or so. Mile 9 was continuously uphill, but I hit the 10 mile mark still holding a steady 10 minute pace, and I could feel myself slowing. That’s when I took the Sharkies, and I swear that’s what powered me through to the end!

The last 3 miles were the longest, mainly because the last water station was at mile 10, so there were no breaks for that last stretch. I kept passing people walking on that part of the course, and I was SO TEMPTED. I kept plugging along though, although my time had probably slowed to an 11 or 12 minute mile.

The last 1/2 mile or so was ALL uphill. Apparently that’s the trend around here though, as you may remember the Komen race I ran was the same way. At that point though, there were other racers that had finished already cheering us on. It was awesome, and gave me the strength I need to push through to the finish line. I was SO HAPPY to see the 2:11 over my head as I went across the line.

I immediately called my parents to let them know I’d just PRed, but I don’t think it was quite as important to them as it was me. 😉

Secondly I headed over to the Expo area for a little refreshment. Great Harvest was there!


I grabbed a slice of Cinnamon Crunch bread w/ honey + an unpictured 1/2 banana and Powerade that I wolfed down.

All in all it was a GREAT RACE complete with a cute little medal…


If you were to ask me would I run this race again, the answer would be a resounding YES! [Who knows, maybe I’ll PR again next year…]


With my lucky race outfit, you never know.

4:30 marathon, I’m coming for you!

Read Full Post »

Continuing in the vein of Facts About Me:


1. I think Banana Oatmeal is the best kind. Especially with a dollop of White Chocolate Wonderful PB.


2. I like pretty bowls. Especially from Target. 😉

3. I actually just like Target. A LOT.


4. I adore leftovers for lunch. Means I can sleep in. *yawn*


5. I like my leftover pizza cold.

6. I only ate 3/4 of what is pictured here.

7. A lot of running planned for me this weekend! Half marathon + a run with Stacey. Love.

8. The thought of running a marathon scares me.

9. The thought of running a marathon in 5 weeks TERRIFIES me.

10. All those fears will be alleviated if I do well in my race tomorrow. *fingers crossed!*

Read Full Post »

split second

Banana split for a snack?


Yes, please.


  • strawberry oikos
  • 1/2 banana
  • chocolate chips

I’ll take that any day, with a smile. 😀

After work, I scurried to the gym for a glorious 5 mile run on the treadmill followed by a 15 minute incline walk, making my grand mileage 6! This is my first contribution to the POTM challenge, so I was glad to make it worth my while. I have been ellipticalling lately because that was convenient, but I suddenly realized that I have an HALF MARATHON this weekend! eeeekkk!

I am sure I will be fine, those 5 miles were easy enough, and I could have kept going, but I was on the dreadmill…and someone broke into my gym and stole all the televisions last night. WTF? I flipped through a copy of InStyle mag [unsuccessfully] to keep my mind occupied.

Oh, and I rocked out to ‘Catalyst Music Project’. Pretty awesome worship record, if you are into that kind of thing. Which I am.

I hauled my sweaty self over to Hawthorne’s Pizza after the gym to meet my cousin Laura for a little dinner. I love her, and don’t see her nearly enough. We had a fabulous time chatting.

Oh, and I had two slices of Veggie Pizza.



Roma tomatoes, spinach, broccoli and mushrooms with a white sauce.

‘Twas fabulous, and I was filled, both my soul and stomach. Good company and good pizza’ll do that to ya.

Fun Links:

Virtual Makeover [I adore such things!]

My new favorite website [which you’ve probably already seen…or maybe you haven’t!]

Missed Michael Bublé on Rachael Ray today? Never fear, the video is here!

Read Full Post »

National Oatmeal Day



The last of my Spooky S’mores acted as my snack today. 😦

I also had half a bagel:


Because I wanted that thing. And it was delicious.

After work I met Stacey for a run in the gorgeous Dilworth area of Charlotte. We did a 45 minute run in Freedom Park, and it was really nice. Stacey and I run at about the same pace, and it was nice to chat with her and get to know her better. I hadn’t seen her since we met in August, so we had lots to catch up on! I really like hanging out with her, she’s a lot of fun, and we have a good bit in common. Can’t wait until we can do it again!

When I got home, I headed straight for the oatmeal cabinet, so I could celebrate National Oatmeal Day in style!


I finished off my jar of Cinnamon raisin swirl oatmeal in the process.



I adore oats in a jar.

Actually I just adore oats in general.

Why can’t every day be National Oatmeal Day?

With my oatmeal I had another Pink Lady apple.


These apples are really tiny, and perfect for a dessert.

Don’t apples taste so much better when they come straight from the orchard?

This is a carb filled post. Better wrap it up so I can go help my partners in crime work on our halloween costumes!

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »