Supplements + Nutrition + Sleep

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I wanted to dedicate a separate post on what I am doing – and have been doing – over the last three months – that have helped me start to feel better.

**Please keep in mind that I am not a health professional. I am not trained in nutrition or supplement-use. This post is merely from my experience with trying to get some of my levels back up so I could feel normal again!

My diet while I felt lousy wasn’t as great as it normally is. When my stomach hurts, I feel tired or am cranky, I turn to comfort foods. For me that means chocolate, ice cream, milkshakes and sugary candy (Swedish fish and hot tamales are my favorites). I knew that in the long-term these would actually make me feel worse rather than better, but I also felt like now was the time to eat what I wanted, when I wanted. I pride myself on eating very healthy when I am knee-deep in marathon training. This was my window to live a little and satisfy all those cravings that I have. And so I’m sure that my diet was adding to my not feeling as good as I normally do.

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    When Your Mind + Body Are Not On the Same Page

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    After each marathon training cycle, I find that my mind needs a break. Of course my body needs one, but I often find that my mind needs a longer one. A break from following a plan, figuring out how to rearrange all the puzzle pieces so I can fit in the necessary runs and from setting early AM alarms. I have found that it’s usually about 3-4 weeks of downtime. I am still running – but often, it’s a very “fly by the seat of your pants” kind of running. No set paces or distance – more just running what I feel up to running that day. More rest days.

    And then when my mind and heart decide it’s time to resume training, my body immediately gets on board and training picks up. It’s been this way for the last 3 or 4 marathon training cycles.

    This past April was completely different. My mind definitely need the normal break, but when I felt like I was ready to get back into things and resume training, my body was not ready – not even close to being ready.

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      Current State of Running + Why I Run Marathons

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      Check out Instagram for a fun summer giveaway by Nathan Sports!——-

      I drafted so many posts the last 4-5 weeks with updates on running, but each time, I was hesitant to share the progress I had been feeling because I didn’t know if it was permanent. I didn’t want to come here and shout that I was feeling great to only feel like garbage two or three days later.

      Even now, I’m cautiously optimistic that I’m finally on the road to recovery. It’s two full months since Boston – 60 days. Almost 9 weeks. I had what I guess you can call my best week of running post-Boston last week. 44 miles with a whooping 13 mile long run. I know it doesn’t sound like much, especially when Timehop reminded me this morning that I ran a 63+ mile week one year ago. BUT, it is a huge improvement for me – given how I have been feeling the last two months.

      To be completely honest, I’m still not 100% sure what caused me to feel the way I did (and still do to a lesser degree). I think it was a combination of a whole lot of things – nutrition, lack of sleep, back-to-back-to-back tough, breakthrough cycles. And so I’ve been working hard to get those things back in check. Vitamins every day. More sleep at night. Naps on the weekend. Lots of rest and recovery.

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        First Speedwork in 7 Weeks + Some Exciting News!

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        Happy Friday!! I am pumped to be working from home today. We had a big release yesterday evening and unfortunately, I had to do some testing from 11pm-2am. But I was able to sleep in a bit and not worry about commuting into the city!

        I have a few exciting updates to share:

        First, I am taking over Women’s Running Instagram account on Monday. Memorial Day means a lot to my husband and I – we’ve lost a lot of friends due to the war on terror and so Monday is always a tough day for us. I’m racing a 4 miler with “racing” being a loose term since I’m just getting my legs back after weeks of little to no running and zero speed. BUT, I’m going to give it my best shot – and at the very least, it will give me a starting point for the rest of the summer.

        Anyway, make sure you follow Women’s Running (and me while you are at it!) on Instagram so you can follow along on Memorial Day.

        PS. I mentioned this last year, but wanted to share again: If you are planning on running this weekend, consider participating in the Wear Blue: Run to Remember.

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          Things I’m Loving (and Not Loving) Lately

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          Hello, hello! Hope you are having a good week so far!

          I received some questions/feedback on InsideTracker, so I wanted to discuss a couple of things here.

          First, I had mentioned that I went to my wellness doctor/nurse (I call her “doctor” but she’s a certified nurse) prior to getting my bloodwork done with InsideTracker. She’s a close family friend who delivered my godson and has a great practice on Staten Island. I visited her the day after Boston because I felt like something was off – I didn’t know if it was nutrition or something else. I didn’t openly talk about it, but the morning of Boston while I was in Athlete’s Village, I started bleeding. This was pretty concerning to me because my period is extremely regular. I get my period every 28 days. I was 11 days early so it made no sense. Jess and I went to the medical tent and I spoke to the doctor – without going to the hospital for tests, there was really no way to tell what it could be. She said it was likely one of three things: an irregular period, pregnancy or a miscarriage – none of which would be affected by my running that morning.

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            Podcasts + Running Mojo is BACK + Upcoming Races!

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            After feeling “off” for almost three weeks, I was over-the-moon when I started running Saturday morning and realized that I felt GOOD. So good, in fact, that I would have kept running had my sons not had soccer that morning.

            I decided to leave my garmin at home so I could just run and not worry or be distracted by pace. Even though I ran a bit last week, I felt like I was going through the motions. Every step just felt “blah’ and my legs felt heavy.

            I officially jumped on the podcast while running train Saturday. I’ll be the first to admit that I was so hesitant to give this a try. I love listening to music when I run and didn’t know how I would stay motivated to keep moving only hearing an interview or someone speaking.

            But because I didn’t have set mileage or pace on Saturday, I figured it was the perfect time to do it. One of the reasons I was excited to give it a try was because Lindsey was interviewing my good friend, Ashley – and I wanted to listen to the interview anyway – so figured I might as well try it while running! Lindsey started her I’ll have Another podcast a few weeks ago and has had nothing but amazing, fun women on her show. (If you are into the podcast thing, definitely give her a listen!)

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              The Winter Funk + LA Marathon

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              My family (minus my godson who was sleeping!)

              I hope you had a wonderful Christmas/holiday weekend with your family and loved ones. We had a fantastic celebration at our home on Christmas Eve with my sisters, their families and my parents.

              The week leading up to Christmas was pure chaos. Between last minute Christmas shopping, taking the boys to see Santa (AJ was a little weary then warmed up but Ryan was not happy), cleaning the house, food shopping and cooking, I felt like it would never all get done. But it did.

              We also got our new dining room furniture last week. I’ve known what I have wanted to do in our dining room since we moved in over 18 months ago but financially had to wait until now to purchase it all. I could not be happier!

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              I haven’t blogged much the last few weeks – partially because I’ve been so busy but mostly because there hasn’t been a ton of good running. I’ve run here and there, done some speedy (for me) runs and gotten a few double digit runs in – but, by and large, running hasn’t been great. Truth is, I’ve been in a running funk. I’ve had very little motivation to get up early (so I haven’t) and it’s been impossible to get on the treadmill during the day (little guy is barely napping at the moment) so there’s been a lot of days off.

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                Unstructured Speedwork in Offseason

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                Yesterday was my oldest son’s first Christmas party at school. Parents were invited to sit in for the last 30 minutes of the class while the kids sang Christmas songs and decorated cookies.

                And then we spent most of the afternoon outside in the snow! I feel like it has already snowed more this year than recent years combined!

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                Even though I wasn’t sore after Rehoboth, I took almost the whole week off from running and most physical activity. I was (and still am) embracing the off season. It’s been so wonderful to stay up late, watch TV, drink a glass or two of wine with my husband and just enjoy not doing much of anything.  And it’s gone hand in hand with lots of fun, family things that I’ve been able to go to (and stay out late) with zero guilt about missing a workout or getting enough sleep: My youngest sister got engaged and graduated from nursing school and my niece was Mary in her Christmas show. And on a whim last week, I went to the mall with my sister (at 8pm) and then we met up with our other sister for bar food and drinks at 10pm.

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