BALANCE

Howdy to ya and Happy Wednesday!! I’m running Crawlin’ Crab Half Marathon October 5th so this week, I’m gearing back up with some longer runs (even mid week longish runs…oh my!), also focusing on hitting THAT speed! What’s THAT speed? Well, to be more specific (and also completely throwing my hopeful intentions out there), it’s my goal pace for the race. What’s my goal pace? Well, my goal time is 1:35.50 (or really anything under 1:36), so that would leave my pace around 7:18. Can I do it? I hope (and I say this with a big smile)!! Hehe!! Yep, a big, bright smile! DING! Can you see how white my teeth are? Ha, thanks! I’ve been using this new organic cinnamon stuff and it’s totally awe…well, anyways, you don’t want to hear about my new, yummy mouthwash, or do you? Next post (maybe)…

Over the past few months, I’ve realized that running hard runs has everything to do with proper nutrition. It really does. Despite your experiences with this issue, whether you eat a thousand pieces of chocolate candy before a run (ohhh yum, I love chocolate candy) or eat the most perfectly balanced diet you could ever create, that’s great!! I’m a firm believer in living your life like you want to and NOT feeling guilty for indulging in the pleasures of life, like a huge piece of chocolate cake or even a gigantic bowl of potato chips after a long, hard day. We all live our lives the best way we can and sometimes (after that looooong day), a peanut butter cupcake makes us feel waaaay better than a gigantic, steaming bowl of broccoli (with no cheese may I add). True?

I hold this truth to be, well, true.

O-K, so I definitely have been enjoying my time whipping up batches of homemade this and that, like cheesy kale chips (you see, cheese is the best), protein bars, power smoothies, vegetarian pizzas, sweet baby carrots, and much more. It’s so fun to find delicious recipes that really encompass your favorite foods and it’s additionally exciting to add your own touch to these dishes with herbs and spices. That’s my favorite! I love seasoning things! I would season myself if I could! Just kidding! 

I’ve had some great workouts lately and truly (there’s that word again), I attribute it to better nutrition. Trust me, I still treat myself to delicious pastries and more, but I find balance. Balance is key.

I love these foods:

1} Chia seeds & sunflower seeds

2} Avocados 

3} Black beans

4} Blueberries & grapes

5} Organic peanut butter & honey

6} Red peppers & cherry tomatoes 

7} Whole wheat crackers & pepper jack cheese 

8} Oatmeal & strawberries 

9} Kale & spinach 

10} Green tea (Honestly, this tea is the greatest. No sugar! All green baby!!)

What are you loving lately? What are some of your favorite foods?

Have a sweet day!! XOXO!!!

-Kristin 

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Peace

Living life. Doing what you love. Forgiveness. Sometimes the hardest thing in life to do is to forgive yourself.

You wake up late and don’t run. What? How could that happen?

You end your work day on a sour note and don’t hit the gym. Are you kidding?

You can’t find the time to swim or maybe you don’t even want to. For real?

Learn to forgive. It will save you undue frustration. Speaking from personal experience, I’ve made lots of mistakes with running and swimming. For example:

1} I didn’t commit to a race/meet like I should. This happened a lot this summer. 

2} I let fear (of competition) drive away the intensity level at which I competed. 

3} I was scared to really go for it because I didn’t want to feel displeasure. 

4} I felt awkward when I didn’t stick to a strict schedule.

These are just a few examples. There are more. I learned to forgive myself.

My main goal here is to provide you with a perspective. A perspective? Yes, a perspective about forgiveness. I think it’s extremely important to NOT value athletics over self-worth. If you don’t run an event or swim a workout you were supposed to, or even hit a goal pace, you should never feel like you’re less of a person.

Gratitude is so important:

1} Be thankful for the skills that you have.

2} Be thankful for your beautiful, athletic body and for your courageous mind. 

3} Be thankful for the time that you have to give to the things that you love.

My questions to you are:

Are you doing what you love? (My answer: YES! I love swimming, running, lifting weights, and practicing yoga!)

Are you annoyed when you don’t get a scheduled workout in? (My answer: I get frustrated when I don’t get my cardio in.}

Why do you get annoyed? (My answer: If I don’t run/swim, I feel like I’m taking a giant step back in my training.)

What’s the fun in being frustrated? {My answer: None!}

Showing yourself compassion and forgiveness is always a good idea. I highly recommend it. Perfection is definitely overrated, hence, live life doing what you love and don’t forget to smile through the turmoil. 

Have a lovely day!! XOXO!!

-Kristin 

DO YOU SEE?

…WOW, I never thought getting back to a normal schedule would feel so…normal (for lack of a better word). I’m ready to amp things back up! Congratulations to me! 

Amp things back up? Yep, I’m ready to say goodbye to summer and hello to fall. Although there is still tons of time left in summer (+ many more hot runs to be had), I’m ready to let go of the past and work towards the future (more posts, more running/swimming events, more writing new books, also lots more meditation). 

Currently, I’m reading How to See YOURSELF As You Really Are by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and I have to say, it’s a great (although quite philosophical) book! I’m sucking down the words as if they were juicy oranges and I feel fabulous about what’s happening, meaning, I feel all tingly inside from the knowledge gained. After all, knowledge is power. This book is a true powerhouse: It’s jam- packed with unique meditative exercises and stuffed with step-by-step ways to live your life with more happiness. 

I truly believe that happiness starts with me: What makes me happy? What makes me sad? Sometimes these seemingly simplistic questions are not answered with just one word or one phrase (running, swimming, writing, etc.), because sometimes it takes more than just a single word to get through the stresses of life. Through further meditation, I’ve realized that:

1} I worry about things that are out of my control.

2} I stress about situations that I can’t change.

3} I over analyze why people are mean to me (for example, strangers). 

4) I get too bogged down by time. I don’t breathe enough when I’m stressed.

5} I get way too nervous before running/swimming events.

On a separate, completely random note, I’m in love with red and purple grapes!! They are SO delicious!! 

Why am I just realizing this now? Haha! I used to think I didn’t like grapes, but about a month ago, I decided to try some and voila, am completely in love with them! What a discovery, right?!

Also, today, for the first time, I made my very own kale chips!! They are so delicious!! I found the recipe on pinterest! I also found this yumminess, so say hello to my new breakfast smoothie! Hello tasty goodness! Honestly, it really does give you energy!! I highly recommend it (especially after a great sweaty workout). 

How are you? What’s new? Sending you lots of love and happiness!! XOXO!!

-Kristin 

THOUGHTFUL

READY-SET-WRITE!! Okay, so I don’t really know *exactly* where I’m going with this post, but first, let me start by saying…wait, scratch that…let me not start by saying (whatever I was going to say) because duh, my professors always told me to never tell your readers what you’re going write, instead, show them (a.k.a. just write it down). Well, if my words have just left you scratching your head *like, say what?* I get it and totally do not take offense to your confusion because I’m a little on edge myself:

I’m trying to get back into my normal posting status (whatever that means) but wow, something (or someone) keeps getting in the way of this, ya know, me writing my glorious posts! Hehe, so maybe they’re not always “glorious” but I love writing them just the same and I seriously hope you enjoy reading them. If not, no worries, because I still love ya!! Yaay!! There is so much stuff I want to talk about, but yet again, something (or someone) is consuming my time (at this very moment…I’m multi-tasking), which means little blogging time for me, which means you’re sad, which means, I’m sad. Does that make sense? If not, sorry, but I don’t think I wanna try to repeat that word jumble!! Haha! 

My dog is looking at me backwards (I’m being serious! At the present moment, he is balancing on his spine with his *pitiful* eyes looking back at me and his juicy jowls (a.k.a. slobbery jowls…I was trying to be nice) flopping back towards me!) Umm…yeah, he wants me to feed him (he’s trying that pitiful act), but Hello Mr. Dog, I’m writing a brilliant post at this very moment! O-K, I’ll be back! I really need to feed the pooch! I also (kinda *really*) need to start dinner, but that’ll just have to wait because in my opinion, you guys are way more important than eating! Awww, I’m so sweet! Although, I dunno, my husband might disagree (about the dinner thing, not the sweet thing)…or maybe NOT! He’s pretty understanding! 

Side Note: We (meaning, my husband + moi) have been getting along fabulously (not that we didn’t before) and spending lots of great, quality time together this summer. That’s good, right?! We have been taking some cool road trips (which are my favorite), laughing a lot, smiling a lot, and kissing a lot (ugh, totally gross)! Sometimes, living life is the best medicine for stress (which I’ve been experiencing)! Yep, I do believe so! Living a happy life can definitely wipe away the stressy blues, when they pop up. 

Woohoo, Prince (my lovely Cane Corso) has been fed and although my stomach is growling (in anticipation of eating this glorious salad I thought up), I’m yours for the next few minutes!

RANDOM THOUGHTS:

{1} Hey, I forgot to tell you guys that I have pinterest now!! I know, believe me, I know, that I’m a little late in the game, having only recently jumped on the *I love pinterest* bandwagon, but I do, I really do love it! J’adore creating boards!! I’m like a kid at Christmas!! My brain is in creative overload because of all the cool ideas that keep flooding my brain (usually at the most inopportune times, like when I’m sleeping or swimming), but although it’s semi driving me crazy (tired of waking up thinking about new things to pin or swallowing chlorinated water while over-analyzing exactly how I want my board to look), what can I say, I love being creative!! It’s me!

Do you have pinterest? I’d love to follow ya!!

Live your own story

{2} Speaking of swimming, I’m back on track and swimming lots! I’ve swum 12,000 yards this week and loving it! I definitely feel like my *zest* for swimming, if you will, is back and honestly, it feels great! Heck, it feels fabulous!! I’m not done either! I should get in another 12,000 yards. Swimming has changed for me lately, but in a good way; it has been my savior. I love doing yoga, meditating, and then swimming afterwards because then, I feel very peaceful in the water. My strokes flow as in a dream. It’s lovely. 

{3} I have some running races planned for the fall. My running feels good, so no complaints here. It’s pretty warm out, but I guess that’s what summer’s all about, right?! Fun in the sun! I’m excited for fall, though!! I love running in cool, crisp air! That’s the best!

Yep, it is.

{4} Yoga Teacher Training starts in October!!! Soooo excited!!! 

Starting tonight, I’ll definitely be hitting the blogs hard (yours and mine)!! I apologize for my absence! Thanks for your continued support! You guys rock!! Have a beautiful rest of the week!! XOXO!!

-Kristin 

HI, MY NAME IS…

For those of you that don’t know me (a.k.a. just started following my blog), welcome and for those of you that have been following me for some time now, hi (again)! As most of you guys know, I’ve been going through some summer changes (i.e. having less time to do things that I love, like blogging).

Well, my summertime coaching is coming to an end (this Saturday at our Championship meet) and I have to say…I’m very sad about it because yep, I decided (a few weeks back) that this summer will indeed be my last summer coaching. If you’re new to my blog, let me share, that this is my fourth year coaching this team. I’ve enjoyed coaching immensely and will miss my swimmers and fellow coach, Michele.

As it turns out, I’m going through more than summertime changes (in fact, I’m going through some big life decisions) and being the adult that I am, have decided that coach Kristin needs to (magically) transform herself into other titles (like being a mommy one day), hence, have decided to devote my summers to other things.

I told the kids (this past Sunday at the swim team banquet) that I’d no longer be coaching them.

THAT WAS HORRIBLE. I CRIED. THEN I STOPPED. THEN I CRIED AGAIN. IT WAS HORRIBLE. 

The swimmers (ages 4-18) were so cute. They told me how much they didn’t want me to leave. Ohhh, I’m not good with goodbyes. I’m really not! I get so attached. 

Sometimes the simplest things can be the most difficult to explain. I don’t know about you, but I’ve always found this to be true (at least in my life). 

Okay, so now that that’s out of the way, let me also make a note that in the future, although I absolutely love and cherish running, swimming, and working out, I’ll be blogging about other stuff, too (real descriptive, right?).

I’m in a new place in my life where I want to live a thoroughly healthy and happy life. I’m on a wondrous yoga streak (now doing power yoga/meditation every single day), also on a health kick, preparing my meals (and snacks) with only the best ingredients possible. I’m watching my sugar intake and eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. I feel a lot better. As it turned out, I was eating too much sugar and putting way too much emphasis on drinking coffee and caffeine supplements to keep my body going this summer. My body started feeling really bad.

A few days before Allen Stone Run-Swim-Run, my body gave out (from too much sugar, caffeine, and not enough sleep) and sadly, I was unable to compete in the race. I trained for this race all summer long…all those tough brick workouts…

I FELT LOST AFTERWARDS, BUT I’M GETTING BACK ON TRACK.

The biggest lesson that I can share with you guys is listen to your body. Your body will not lead you astray. Your body is your teacher so listen wholeheartedly. 

If I could describe my summer in only a single word, that word would be inelegant.  

If I could describe my summer in a single quote, that quote would be:

“Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it.” Russell Baker

Welcome to my life!! XOXO!!

-Kristin 

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A 5K CURSE!!! CREEPY?! YES!!

Hey!! HEy!! HEY!! Can you believe it’s already July 13th?! Summer is flying by SO fast!! It’s almost kinda sad!! Well, alright, soooo only a couple more weeks until I’M BAAAACK (meaning my life (is back) because swim team is almost over)!! It’s been a long season, but I’m happy to report I’m having a great summer!!

IT’S HOT!! HOT!! HOT!!

BUT…

IT’S FUN!! FUN!! FUN!!

SO…

I’M LOVIN’ IT!! LOVIN’ IT!! LOVIN’ IT!!

FUNNY THING HAPPENED TO ME LAST WEEK!!! 

Well, it really wasn’t THAT funny because it was actually kinda crazy!! Seriously, it was crazy!! Here it goes:

Umm, yep, I’m pretty sure I’m cursed (or at least my 5ks are) because HELLO, yet another 5k was canceled!! HUH?! WHAT?! Yes, we’re on the same page here!! I couldn’t believe when I received the call a few days ago that Fort Eustis 5k was canceled (due to lack of volunteers, etc.)!! 

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?!!! TWO RACES IN A ROW A NO GO!! WHAT’S GOING ON??!! THE UNIVERSE IS THROWING ME A CRAZY RUNNIN’ CURVE BALL RIGHT NOW!! 

I guess I’ll try again in a few weeks (to run a 5k) because I got plans this weekend (well, at least I think I do). I’m hoping not all of my races are cursed (just 5ks) because Allen Stone Run-Swim-Run is coming up this Saturday !! OH BOY!! I’m nervous!! I wanna do good!! 

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Summer Nationals is coming up, too (in August) and I’m totally freaking out right now!! I’m scrambling to get all of my butterfly training in and seriously think I swam 1000 x 100 meter fly this weekend!! Hehe!! Oh well…I don’t need my legs to run tomorrow, right?!! Well, if I do, I might be in a tad bit of trouble because they’re kinda sore!! 

DO YOU LIKE SWIMMING BUTTERFLY??!! I DO!!!

I did lots of running speed work this past week, so I’m hoping it pays off in the run portions of my run-swim-run!! Here was my run from today:

Split
Time
Distance
Avg Pace
Summary 38:10.0 5.01 7:36
1 7:55.8 1.00 7:56
2 7:40.1 1.00 7:40
3 7:40.8 1.00 7:41
4 7:36.9 1.00 7:37
5 7:14.2 1.00 7:14
6 :01.6 0.01 5:09

 

Also, yesterday, I was so happy because I ran + I swam + I cycled (inside on my new pink trainer). I love that thing!! Triathlon sometime in the future? PROBABLY!

GUESS WHAT??!! I BOUGHT A NEW GARMIN SWIM WATCH!! YAAAY!!! IT’S AWESOME!! I SHOULD GET IT IN A COUPLE OF DAYS!! I’M BEYOND EXCITED!!!

CHECK OUT HOW COOL IT IS!!!

I’M LOVIN’ MY GARMINS!!!!

HAVE YOU HEARD OF GARMIN SWIM??!!

WHATCHA UP TO??!!

-Kristin 

 

WHAT UP??!!

Hey y’all!! HAPPY MONDAY!! How was your weekend??!!

Per our conversation (i.e. post) on Friday, I wasn’t able to run my 5k (Insert a very sad face). Hurricane Arthur reared his ugly head the morning of July 4th, hence completely messing up all hope of me running (well, running without pouring rain and gusting wind). I guess *my PR* (stars, meaning hopefully) will have to wait until Saturday because I’m running Fort Eustis 5k! I’m hoping for the best and also begging Mother Nature to please (PLEASE!) cooperate this time.

It’s crazy, after a month of not racing, I now have two big races coming up:

July 12th- Fort Eustis 5k

July 19th- Allen Stone Run-Swim-Run

I GUESS IT’S TIME TO SEE WHERE I’M AT!!!

Anyways, so later (like sometime in the afternoon), the weather cleared up and I headed down to Norfolk with my husband, Marc. We picked up my new, gnarly, pink bike trainer that honestly, I’m already in love with. When I got home, I took it out for a spin upstairs in my weight room.

It’s a great new addition to my other cool gadgets. Here are some of my favorite toys:

1} Blender Bottle 

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2} Monofin

FINIS SHOOTER MONOFIN

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3} Swimming Drag Belt

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4} Garmin GPS Watch

GARMIN FORERUNNER 10 FEMALE GPS WATCH

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DO YOU HAVE ANY FAB TRAINING TOYS?!

My run on Saturday at Virginia Beach was horribly windy. Honestly, I felt like I was running in place (like on a treadmill). I couldn’t believe how elegantly I got through it, considering the pain I was in (with the strong wind gusts).

My husband keeps telling me how mentally strong I’ve become aaand…yeah, I guess I’m finally starting to see what he is talking about. It used to take me a mile or so to calm my breathing down, to relax my face, and to really enjoy my run, but now, I do all of these things (pretty much) right away. Towards the end of a run, I might be physically exhausted, but my mind refuses to give up.

This quote is ridiculously inspiring. It gives me chills. So, back to my run:

Split
Time
Distance
Avg Pace
Summary 44:19.0 6.01 7:24
1 7:59.2 1.00 7:59
2 7:09.7 1.00 7:10
3 7:17.8 1.00 7:18
4 6:56.8 1.00 6:57
5 7:30.7 1.00 7:31
6 7:22.5 1.00 7:22
7 :02.1 0.01 5:07

 

After the boardwalk run, we headed over to Whole Foods for some fresh squeezed orange juice and some breakfast potatoes with lots of kale (well, at least for me). It was YUM! I love their kale with garlic. I’m tellin’ ya though, after a few bites, I can fend off any vampire attack. Hehe!! Seriously, your breath NOT smelling like garlic sauce is overrated!! Tehehe!! Okay, I’ll stop now because I’m having way too much fun entertaining myself…I mean YOU. 

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HAVE A GREAT MONDAY!!! MORE FUN COMING TOMORROW!!! XOXO!!

-Kristin