Archive for nutrition

post-race musings

Posted in motivation, photos, running, shoes, trail with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2014 by afuntanilla

Time to write about what worked, what didn’t, at the North Face 50k, and more importantly, why.

Training; part of this went well and part didn’t.

The positives: 90% of my training was on the exact course. This was a huge help in getting my body and mind prepared. There were no surprises (except the mud)
I got in some long days and long back-to-back days.

What could have been better:
I believe I would have benefited from running more with others on the course. This would have pushed me to increase my pace & probably increase my distance. (Not to mention the companionship on the trail)
Overall, I prefer to run alone, but 1x a week or something like that would have been beneficial.

Signing up for race EARLY! – as mentioned in earlier posts, I went to sign up for the race late and it was already sold out. So, I was all out of sorts for 2 weeks trying to see if I could get in. Then, I got in. Then, 3 weeks before race day, I decided to transfer from 50m to 50k. Although that ended up being a very good decision, the whole mess around not entering early, being undecided on distance…all of that was mentally challenging and stuff I could have done without.

Race day itself: I don’t think I could have done anything differently that would have resulted in a better finish (time wise). I felt pretty darn good for the first 15 miles and then I didn’t feel so good, incrementally. Maybe a salt tab would have helped with what I perceived as legs cramps, but I have never taken one before and I didn’t want to experiment right then and there. (Wouldn’t it be great if we could stick something in our mouth, like a thermometer, to tell us exactly what is wrong; like a red color means need salt, a yellow color means need protein, etc…I mean we have other instantaneous tests for pregnancy and for fevers, why can’t there be something like this? Hmmmm….)

I believe my injury to my left leg caused me limitations as the race progressed and then a different issue emerged on my right leg that I am still trying to figure out what it is…

But, all in all, my result is in line with how I trained. Perhaps could have been about 30 minutes faster if the mysterious new right leg issue didn’t occur.

GEAR; wore my Salomon pack. In hindsight, I could have done without this. Could have gotten by with a hand held and another something around my waist to carry some gels. There were plenty of aid stations to refill water, etc.

Shorts; north face, black. Love these shorts. Should buy more pairs.
Shoes; HOKA Stinson- good shoes for this muddy, wet, day. Heavier than the Huaka’s, but these have better traction.
Shirt; North Face Mountain technical shirt.

Nutrition: 2 hammer gels every hour, 1 package of tailwind, chips, orange slices at a few aid stations, water.

I carried water in my Salomon pack and then also a handheld in the pocket. I used the bottle for Tailwind (later miles)

Last but not least, what worked was COMRADERIE!

As mentioned in previous post, I have never done a race before where I experienced this level of COMRADERIE. It started pre-race. I randomly met someone who I follow and who follows me on Twitter. she recognized me from pictures and we had a fun brief exchange!
Next, while on the 1st climb up Bobcat, I look to my left and say “hey, I know you, I follow you on Twitter.” How freaking random is this??
More fun exchanges.
On the climb up Coastal, chatted with a fella from SoCal who would later see me at the finish & thank me for our chat and how much it helped him push through. Very cool especially cause I have no idea what I might have said that could have helped!
In line waiting for shuttle and then on shuttle, chatted with a local fella & totally swapped race stories and other life chatter. FUN!

What also worked? I had fun & smiled!!

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Training Update #2: Half of a Full is Half

Posted in races, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 22, 2011 by afuntanilla

So, at the end of my last post, I said a couple of things: One: that racing in Half Moon Bay this coming Sunday, would be questionable. Two: That I was going to see the doctor.

After my last “long” run that day, Sept 13th, I was feeling pretty horrible. Not just tired like I know “normal” tired to feel, but just absolutely flattened out. Legs felt like they were bricks and my entire body felt like it had to exert way too much energy just to keep barely moving. Yeah…not too good when this is suppossed to be a “taper run” as I head into the final weeks pre marathon. Clearly, my body was trying to tell me something.

So, yes…I think part of what’s been happening during this summer training session has been overtraining, as I wrote about in my previous post. It all makes perfect sense. The other part of what has been going on with me is something I just got confirmed by going to the doctor recently. I am anemic! I knew my iron levels were on the the lower side, but didn’t think Anemic. So, this actually explains a lot. It comes into play more because for about 1.5 years now, my nutrition has been all vegetarian. So, these 3 factors together, i believe, have all played a part in how (badly) I have been feeling.

overtraining + anemic + vegetarian.

***I am sure I can continue on with vegetarian nutrition to get my iron needs met, but i think i need to EAT MORE of the same food & incorporate more IRON RICH foods. I have been eating IRON rich foods simply by default of my overall meal “planning”, but obviously I have not been eating enough to satisfy my iron needs. I actually find the whole meal planning, nutrition aspect of my life to be quite challenging. Why? Well, here’s my reasons…or excuses or whatever…I live alone and we all know that cooking for one is challenging and to me, quite frankly, mostly sucks. Not to mention, I end up throwing a lot of food away and I feel guilty as hell.

Here’s a typical example of what i do: i get momentarily inspired to cook for myself. I got to farmers market or whole foods and get lots of veggies and other goodies and make dinner. It turns out ok. Just “ok” because I am not a very good cook, very recipe-following challenged and i do not enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating good, tasty, food, but i am not too good at preparing this type of food. So anyways….i make one dinner for myself. Next day, maybe I use some more of the food i just bought for breakfast or lunch or another dinner. And then, I get very bored with it and i still have lots of food left that I cannot use because I am tired of eating boring, bland meals. So, I go out. Make sense. See my problem!?! Anyways…i will have to keep working on this….nutrition! Please don’t give me advice to follow recipes….i have tried and tried. I suck at it. I really need to make more money or win the lottery to hire a personal chef.

Anyways, back to the training and running. So, after the last post on the 13th, I said I would not run all week. REST.

I made it to Thursday. Ran and felt ok. barely ok. Still struggling.

Ran on Saturday and felt very good. Only 4.2 miles, but really enjoyed the run and had fun. First time i felt like it was FUN in quite some time. Sunday ran another 5.25 miles and was ok.

So…after much thought and consideration, I have decided I will not race in the marathon, but I will run the half-marathon. It feels like such a big decision. And I guess in my world, it is. Why is it big? Because I have been training for this race since MAY. Because I have trained in the heat and humidity that is the summer in Atlanta. Because I have put many hours of sweat, heart and tears into this training. Because it was my goal since May.

And yet, making this decision to only run the half is a good, smart decision. Frankly, the way my body has been feeling, I think it will be more than enough of a challenge for me on Sunday.

So, i am changing races mostly because I’m choosing to listen to my body; because I realize that if i want to continue to run and have fun and enjoy it, i have to listen RIGHT NOW, not PUSH HARDER (which is what i usually do)

I’m changing races because I realize not running this marathon is not the end of the world and with the grace of God, i will run another one when the time it right.

I’m also changing races because this race day will be one not just for me, but for some friends who will be there participating in their FIRST EVER RUNNING EVENTS!! I want to be as present as I can be for them…not broken down and exhausted or injured or full of so much disappointment that i cannot enjoy them and be there for them and THEIR TRIUMPHS!

I’m thrilled beyond words that 4 friends will be there in Half Moon Bay and 1 more doing her own own race in Texas!! challenging themselves and their bodies…trying to see what they can do!! It brings me a great sense of joy and I can’t wait to see everyone.

I have so much to be grateful for…and gratitude for my body in it’s present state is a good place to start. I am where I am.

Thanks to all my friends who keep supporting me, who continue to cheer for me in my pursuits. Your support means so much to me.

Keep Movin’

-Ang

sunday

Posted in 40 mile run, motivation, quotes, road with tags , , , , , , on June 22, 2010 by afuntanilla

“I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life’s greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent. As simplistic as this may sound, it is still the common denominator separating those who live their dreams from those who live in regret.” – ANON

Great running yesterday. Woke up at 530am and started at 7am at Silver Comet Trail. Ran a solid 8 miles. Absolutely drenched afterwards. Rested. Ate. Went to office for a bit. Rested. Ate. Ran another 3.5 miles on treadmill in the evening.

Loving my Vegetarian, Semi-Vegan nutrition. Why SEMI-Vegan? Cause I just am not willing to forego half-n-half in the java.

Stay positive. Stay Strong. Stay active.

Oh yeah…i think i need a new pair of running shoes. K-Swiss, baby!

just Thrive, baby

Posted in cooking, motivation, random, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2010 by afuntanilla

My nutrition continues to fall into the Vegetarian/Semi-Vegan category. I’ve been continuing to read & enjoy THRIVE. Last night, I cooked Salmon for the first time ever! Hey…I’m a slow learner! I just sauteed some veggies with it in a skillet with some olive oil & a little turmeric. It was not GREAT, but it was ok…for now. I will learn to perfect. I will need to invest in a few new kitchen items like a good skillet (i had 2, i threw 1 out last night post dinner) and a food processor. I’ve been using a lot of Amazing Grass’s products;
the bars and then some of the powders in my smoothies. All pretty tasty, actually.
A typical smoothie is:
Banana
Frozen Berries (blackberry, strawberry, blueberry)
Almond Milk
Scoops of Amazing Grass Hemp Protein or their Amazing Meal Blend
*Spinach* sometimes

I find that I am having success with changing my nutrition this time around because I am using the book as a resource and then looking for additional resources. I’ve really noticed feeling “lighter”, not so heavy & bloated…and i understand now what types of food and food combinations can really lead to those sensations. Needless to say, I like the “lighter” feeling.
I also like just the difference in my focus; before I would focus on “cutting out sugar, alcohol, meat..etc…”. Now, my focus, isn’t really about cutting those things out…but rather “what do i want to consume that is nutritious?” It might be all semantics, but it makes a difference. Am I making sense?

Not a whole lot going on in the running arena…only running a little – like 15 miles a week. I’m thinking of some plans for the rest of the year and into next year. I hope to make some decisions soon and will keep you posted.

On a brief travel note, I went to NYC on Friday/Saturday. Saw a 2 person play called “Dusk Rings a Bell” w/ the amazing and gorgeous Kate Walsh. (gushing) It was awesome. The play was touching, funny, poignant, surprising & very thought-provoking. I was 3rd row from stage at a tiny, intimate theater. While in NYC, I also spent time with an old friend…someone I had not seen in 27 years. Even though I was only in town for a tiny amount of time, we managed to share 2 meals and coffee together. It was pretty neat to say the least. I’m actually still pretty full from our visit, from the entire trip. Maybe I will write more about it all later…

For now, if you want to read something inspiring, copy & paste this & read. pretty great.
http://www.scottjurek.com/blog/

Be well. Live big. Rest. Love.

Cheers!

hills, nutrition, shoes, etc..

Posted in cooking, photos, road, shoes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2010 by afuntanilla

Mid week I did some more speed and hill work. Here’s a couple of photos of the 2 hills I have been running my hill sprint repeats. These workouts are not lengthy, but they are strenuous and I feel damn satisfied afterwards.

The first Hill (pic #1) is longer. The 2nd hill (pic #2) is shorter, steeper. I’ve been running sprint repeats of both.

Saturday I ran a short, hilly, 3 miler. Sunday, I ran a flat 4.5 miles. The heat & humidity are creeping higher. You would think after living in Atlanta for 10 years it would be a non-factor, but it is very much still a factor. Mixed in with the small amount of miles has time at the gym. Just trying to get stronger & faster.

In honor of my beloved San Francisco Giants, I wore these KSWISS shoes today that i picked up on my trip in March for LA MARATHON.

I have 3 pairs of KSWISS shoes; the ones above which are KSWISS Tubes and 2 pairs of KSWISS K-Onas – one blue pair & one red pair. I love them all. The K-Onas are very light, but still have great support. The Tubes are heavier with more cushion. I wore ASICS for years, but over the last year, I have found a new love with these shoes.

One of the things I have written about in the past is nutrition. Often times, i will decide, for different reasons, to cut certain foods from my diet. Sometimes it has been sugar, meat, alcohol, etc…Well…as it has happened over the last month, I have just been “organically” (no pun intended) reading more about nutrition and understanding more about how different foods affect my body. So, in a nutshell, I have been eating almost entirely a fresh food/vegetarian diet. I picked up this awesome book called THRIVE by Brendan Brazier, a Vegan Triathlete. Its been a very informative & compelling read. I’m enjoying learning more about what I put into my body. One of the best things about the book is that it contains a lot of very SIMPLE recipes. (if you have followed me…you know i need SIMPLE!!) My goal is not to adhere to a Vegan diet — there are certain items i am just not willing to give up…like 1/2 & 1/2 in my coffee. 🙂 The main thing for me is to understand what I am eating and why and make choices that are healthy for me. I’ve been enjoying putting together the new recipes and shopping for different items. One of the most glaring things i have noticed since modifying my nutrition is the “lightness” i feel. It’s amazing how eating certain foods just make one feel ridiculously heavy! I look forward to more reading, more learning and healthy eating.

I working on a new dream…a new plan. Will announce soon.

Stay strong. Train hard. Train smart. Love and Live BIG.

watching the men and other things

Posted in motivation, photos, road with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 1, 2010 by afuntanilla

Thursday, I ran in and around Piedmont Park. I bought some new trail shoes around xmas time and had not taken them out running yet and there is a place in the park where I can run on crushed rock/dirt. It was so nice to be outside after the previous weekend of rainy, icky weather. As i was running along at my 9min-ish/mile pace, I was passed by 2 guys at different times. When they ran by, it appeared as though they were sprinting; their legs moving so fast, so fluid, so even and graceful. It was beautiful. I love watching men run fast. I find them more beautiful to watch versus fast women. Not sure why. Just do.

Just for a tiny bit of “speed work”, friday night i jumped onto the treadmill and ran 2 fast miles. Whew. That hurt. But, good hurt, ya know??!!

Solid running this weekend. Saturday, I wimped out of running outside as it was another rainy, cold, nasty day. I hopped onto thrillmill treadmill and ran 6.28 miles. I was actually gonna go for 6.5, but treadmill stopped at 60 minutes. Of course, I could’ve restarted it, but I took it as a sign.

Today’s run was outside. Clear skies, about 40 degrees. So nice to have the sun again on weekend. I popped into REI to grab some gels. One of the ones I grabbed was CLIF BLOCKS. I had some last weekend for first time and liked it a lot. If you have not tried, I would recommend. I feel a little burnt out on the true gels.

The first couple of miles were tough. This was my 3rd day in a row of running back to back to back with less than 24 hrs rest between runs. The downside is it takes me a bit to get going; the upside is my legs get used to running through fatigue. I finally felt good after about 4 miles. Ran all along Peachtree St -Brookhaven and Buckhead. Nearly 100% in the sun so that felt nice on my body.

Nutrition: so, i basically went a whole month with a vegetarian diet. I definitely discovered some interesting stuff, both “positive” & “negative”.

POSITIVES

-ate a lot more at home >> forced me to get creative & cook for self

-cheaper to eat in, obviously

-because I ate in a lot, saved $$ on alcohol cause I rarely drink at home

NEGATIVES

-had some issues w/ not getting enough iron >> felt groggy & really fatigued at different points

-sometimes challenging to find good veggie meals at restaurants

So, net-net, it was a good thing for me to do. I feel like I will be better at getting my veggies into my diet on a more consistent basis. I’m not gonna put any “restrictions” on my diet now. I wanted to see how this would go for a while and know I now. I will say this: I am looking forward to having some steak tacos again. One of my favorite things to eat! If anyone has non-meat ideas on IRON (besides veggies), please let me know.

Here’s the last week of miles:

Jan 31: 9 miles – outside

Jan 30: 6.28 miles – treadmill

Jan 29: 2 miles – treadmill, fast

Jan 28: 4.4 miles – outside

Jan 26: 3.5 miles – treadmill

For the month of JANUARY 2010, I ran 97 miles. A decent start to 2010.

Next race is in 2 weeks. Looking forward to it.

I will end with a picture of a true class act. Congratulations on Grand Slam #16!

Shallow, random…whatever.

Posted in gym, motivation, random, road with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2010 by afuntanilla
  • I think watching The Biggest Loser should be mandatory for all households. Great Show. Informative. Motivating. Educational. Fun.
  • I would never want to be President. No matter what political party is in office, people are so incredibly negative about what you do or fail to do. It’s unbelievable, really.
  • I am pretty pumped up for next week when LOST is back on the air. Bummed though that it is final season
  • Going to see LEGION this week. Not usually my cup of tea, but hey, KATE WALSH, is in it so I will go and check it out. Actually, previews have interested me…
  • Very happy to say I personally contributed to Apple’s latest blow-out quarter with the purchase of my iMAC. Freaking love it. Go APPLE
  • I wish I could spend a solid weekend learning about nutrition and exercise. A weekend away somewhere like a workshop where I could just focus on nutrition.
  • February is maybe my least favorite month of the year. Why? Football is over and baseball hasn’t begun yet.
  • I continue to try to motivate people at work to exercise. Hope I can get some folks to sign up to run a 5k this spring. That would be awesome!
  • One of my male co-workers wanted to give me a hug yesterday. We hugged. It was really sweet. I was leaving for day and he just asked, “can i hug you”. I feel a sister/brotherly kinship with him, perhaps. I love hugs. Good ones, not half-ass lame hugs.
  • I love chips

Jan 24: 7.2 miles, outside, total rain

Jan 23: 6.2 miles, outside

Jan 21: 3 miles, treadmill, fast

Jan 19: 3.4 miles, treadmill, fast

Keep it real. Train Hard. Train Smart. Keep pushin’