Happy Tuesday, friends! I think it’s official that I will probably no longer be posting on Mondays. I’ve tried two weeks in a row and it’s just not happening!
I have lots of long run-goodness to chat about, but before that, let’s recap this past weekend. It was perfect! I could have stood it to be a bit cooler, but regardless, it felt like fall and I was thrilled!
Friday night, as you know, was Pizza Night! Adam was on dessert, leaving me to make the pizza, so I opted for something simple, and used ingredients we already had in the fridge. A pepperoni & sausage mozzarella pizza it was! Perfectly easy, not overdone, and delicious. The night before we did a recipe my mother in law showed us…parmesan peppers…so I wanted to show those real quick as well. This is obviously before they’ve been cooked, but once they’ve cooked for ~15 minutes, they’re so good and flavorful!
Saturday morning I woke up and did my long run which I’ll come to in just a bit! So stay with me. When I got back, we into Little Rock to the Hillcrest ‘neighborhood’ to check out the Hillcrest Harvest Festival. We thought it was going to be just a little thing, with a few booths here or there, but it turned out to be huge and tons of people! It’s so nice to see so many people taking advantage of local activities and supporting so many local businesses at the same time! Adam and I are all about buying local, so we loved seeing which vendors were at the festival, and finding lots of new ones we’ll be supporting in the future! We walked around, mingled, made a few purchases, and before we knew it we were covered in sweat and decided to head back.
Saturday night was deemed date night since we had a coupon we had been itching to use, so we got all fancied up, went to dinner, and came home to our power being out the rest of the night. An exciting evening if you ask me 🙂
Sunday we went to church, and later that afternoon I had a last minute photo shoot with the cutest 8th grade girl for her yearbook. Not only is she a cheerleader and plays volleyball, but she’s also student body president. In 8th grade. I mean, really? I was nowhere NEAR that cool in 8th grade! I didn’t know even know “cool” was allowed in 8th grade! Can’t wait to finish those pics up tonight!
When I came home, Adam and Truckee were waiting for me on the front porch. The best sight to pull up to 🙂
Running a New Route: Why It’s Helpful For Your Training
Saturday morning, I woke up and knew it was time for my long run. Except, I wasn’t exactly feeling in the mood to run FIVE, 2-mile laps around the lake. Yuck. I can barely handle making the lake trail into a 6 miler, let alone 9-10. So, I decided to change things up and see if that wouldn’t put a pep in my step! Best. Idea. Ever
I drove out to Big Dam Bridge and the river, and decided I would split up my run into 3 segments to make it not feel as daunting. Since I was running solo, I knew it would be a constant mind-game and fight against boredom. I decided I would do ~4 across the bridge and down and back both sides and back to my car, then ~4 out the opposite direction towards downtown LR and through Burns Park, then the last ~1.5 back on the bridge to finish it up. Worked like a charm!
I ate three Clif Shot Bloks before I started, then had 2 after the first segment, then the last 1 right before the last segment, and plenty of water of course. It was cool enough when I started that my long sleeve shirt, shorts, and compression socks were the perfect outfit, but by the end it was more than toasty! I was super impressed though with my Brooks shirt because it did its wicking job so well that I never noticed feeling overly hot or cool from sweat! Unfortunately, since I had my sleeves rolled up most of the time, only my forearms got any sun…just the tan-line I was hoping for to close out summertime.
My pace was pretty good, I was proud of it and was excited at how GOOD I felt the whole time. Amazing what hydrating and fueling DURING your run can do! After that terrible 8-miler I did a few weeks ago without anything, whew, I’ll never do that again. I stayed in the low 9:00’s the whole time, and just wanted to feel comfortable but still challenged the whole time. Still trying to remind myself that I’m not training for a 5K right now, and that I probably am not able to do a half in the 8’s yet so I need to keep that in mind! I think if I can improve my overall pace just a hair, I’ll be right on target to sub-2 my next half, especially once you add in the race day adrenaline. Plus on race day, I’ll be trying harder. Obvs.
Here were the splits, only because I’m a running nerd and always like reading this stuff.
Mile 1- 8:57, Mile 2- 9:26, Mile 3- 9:06, Mile 4- 9:20, Mile 5- 9:15, Mile 6- 9:14, Mile 7- 9:15, Mile 8- 9:24, Mile 9- 9:31, last .25 – 2:02
My iPhone pictures don’t do it justice, but running alongside the Arkansas River on the River Trail, is gorgeous and SO nice! Little Rock has definitely done a great job making safe and scenic trails!
I can’t even express how much better my long run was having done it on a new route, or at least a route I haven’t run in a couple months! The whole time I felt refreshed, was able to distract myself and enjoy the scenery, passed tons of other people running or biking, and felt accomplished after each segment which gave me the motivation to keep going. Plus, I worked some different muscles going up and down the steep inclines on the bridge! My hip-flexors were screaming the rest of the day, so a good foam-rolling session felt aaaaamazing!
Running a new route is a GREAT idea because:
1. A new route = new scenery = less boredom and more enjoyment
2. A new route = new elevations = more muscles worked than usual = more bang for your buck. (especially beneficial considering you don’t know for sure what the roads will be like at your actual race…so running different “earth’s” will help those leg muscles adapt!)
3. A new route = you see a different group of people, and are motivated to keep up!
4. A new route = motivation to keep going = when you’re not running the same ‘ole, same ‘ole you are more likely to “explore” and WANT to keep running
5. A new route = CHANGE! = change is a good thing, and changing up your routes will help keep you from getting burned out!
6. A new route = fun = a happy runner = in a good mood the rest of the day = happy wife happy husband
Do you find that running a new route re-energizes you? What is one of your favorite places to run? Did you have a beautiful fall weekend as well??
I’ll be back later tonight or tomorrow with this week’s meal planning! It’s a short 4 day menu this time, since this weekend is a little different. Check back! Also, be sure and check out my last review on the app, React Mobile.