Category Archives: Food & Drink

8th Day of the Week for Running and Coffee Shopping

Happy Thursday!!

 
Thursday is the last day of the work week in Israel so it’s always a good day for me, looking forward to some weekend fun.
Today especially, since we had a holiday Tuesday and Wednesday, and my work gave us an extra day off, so no work for 5 days.

 
I had been meaning to go to a running store to cash a couple of prices I got at races, so I did that today. They have mostly Mizuno running gear, and a few other brands I don’t particularly like, which was no problem at all, I have been loving Mizuno running clothes lately.
I got two singlets, similar to the ones I bought a couple of weeks ago and absolutely loved. Also a sports bra, socks for my hubby, and a GU chomps because I have to try that flavor.

 
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I had some time left so I went and bought a new coffee machine, our new one was pretty much done.

 
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Shopping for coffee related and running related things, doesn’t get much better than that for me.
As simple as this seems, sometimes I don’t have the time for the little things, my family, work, and running take a lot of my time. I am not at all complaining, I love being busy and those things are definitely worth all my time and energy. Sometimes I just wish the week had an extra day for all the random stuff I need or want to do.

 
On Tuesday I did an interval run on the treadmill, my fast pace for 1 minute intervals is 4:00 Min/KM (06:26 Min/Mile). This is faster than I was doing a few months ago, so I’m glad I’m slowly making progress. Although I don’t feel like I can do them faster at this point, I did add a couple more intervals to Tuesday session, instead of 5 fast intervals, I did 7. I thought I might have trouble on the last few, but the run went really well, and I think I could have even done 1 or 2 more.
I do the intervals at the end, total it was a 50 minute run ranging in pace from 06:19 Min/KM (10:10 Min/Mile) to 4:00 Min/KM (06:26 Min/Mile).

 
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Wednesday was a very hot day in Israel, 40C/104F by noon, so I had to go run as early as possible. I checked the weather.com app on my phone the night before, and it seemed like it would be cool until 8 AM or so, so I started my run at 5:30. I guess a lot of people were thinking the same thing, because the boardwalk had way more action than usual at that time.
14K/8.7M at an easy pace, average 05:07 Min/KM (08:14 Min/Mile).

 
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Does it take you forever (like me) to do some things you want/need to do, that are not already part of your routine?

It can sometimes take me weeks/months to find the time to do something like color my hair or go buy clothes.

 

Long Run, with Phone and Stops: Unheard Of!

I knew there was a triathlon going on this morning starting at the Tel Aviv Port, part of my running route, so I decided to do my long run with my phone and take some pictures.
I never run with my phone because I prefer to run as light as possible, but actually hardly felt it. My favorite running tights, I have 4 of the same type, slightly different models, have mesh side pockets which hold the phone in place perfectly.

 
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I started running at around 06:00 AM to beat the heat, it was already light out, and the weather was perfect. I put my sunglasses on my head because I knew I’ll be needing them soon, and put sunscreen on my arms and shoulders. Glad I did because my shoulders felt crazy hot by the time I finished running.

 
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I stopped to take a few pictures along the way, I always feel like stopping in the middle of my run is like giving myself an unfair advantage (against myself?), but figured taking a few pictures of the triathlon was worth it. It was just a few seconds here and there, nothing major.

 
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There was an incredible energy at the port with everyone getting ready for the swim when I ran by. People were waiting to go in the water, getting their things ready at the transition stations, warming up, etc. Of course my thoughts were “I need to do one of these”. I’m an OK swimmer and I have a relative who will lend me a bike for a while, so I can try things out and see how it feels. Not too sure about the actual “competing” part, but I could do it for fun.

 
My run today was 20K pretty easy, changed my route a little because I didn’t want to run on the course where the bike/run portions of the triathlon would be.
Total time of the run (not counting stops, I stopped my Garmin each time), was 01:37:20, average pace for the first 16K was 04:58 Min/KM (08:00 Min/Mile), average pace for the last 4K was 04:30 Min/KM (07:14 Min/Mile).
I wasn’t planning on finishing faster, but it happens to me often that I get a lot of energy at the end of the run. It’s a great feeling, and I enjoy running faster, but it bothers me that I can’t stick to the plan. I had scheduled a 12K run for next Wednesday with 4K at tempo pace, and a fartlek run for Thursday, now I’ll switch one of those runs with an easy run. I don’t want my fast speed runs to be more than 15% of my total running, each week. For the last few months I’ve been doing speed work around 20%-25% of my total weekly running time, and I think that was too much. It somehow worked, because I know I improved my speed, but I also dealt with tired legs on a regular basis. Sometimes they were just a little tired, sometimes they were very tired, but I’m thinking my legs shouldn’t be tired 90% of the time for months and months.

 
I was back home early, around 8:15. Another advantage of starting my runs at dawn, so I can be home early during the weekend and make the most of our family time. We stayed home all morning, and had a late breakfast on the balcony. That’s my big salad with cauliflower on top, my husband loves fried cauliflower (so do I), and I asked him to leave me some on the side, not fried, so I could add it to my salad. There are a lot of veggies under there too, so healthy.

 
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Went out in the afternoon for a longish walk with the hubs and kids in Tel Aviv, had coffee and hot chocolate, and then we had pizza in the evening to make up for all that healthy food from earlier. Best pizza place in Israel. I had the four cheese pizza, and another one with eggplant and Bulgarian cheese, so delicious. I’m not a huge fan of pizza, but when it’s really good, then I love it.

 
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How much speed work do you do? Any tips on how to do it without overdoing it?
Do you have a favorite pizza place or is any pizza delicious to you?



 

Sticky Independence

Cold weather and I are bitter enemies. Even here in Israel, there were some mornings that the thought of running outside made me want to quit running altogether.
But now spring is here, and it got warm really fast.
I went for a run at 06:00 in the morning, with 25C/77F when I started. Humid and sticky.

 
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It was an easy pace run so I wasn’t making a lot of effort, but still finished my run sweaty and tired.

 
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It’s a non-working holiday in Israel today, Independence Day, and we spent some time with family. My husband’s parents both come from really big families, so get togethers become huge events with lots of aunts and uncles and nephews and children all over the place, quite fun. I think we were over 50 adults and at least 20 children.

 
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Sometimes I miss eating meat, but then I think about the bigger picture. My veggies were delicious, and I also had a large piece of some round thick bread, I don’t know exactly what it was, kind of like a pita but four times the size.

 
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A little break in the week always does wonders to my energy levels, and I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s morning run and strength training, although my alarm is set for way too early.
It will be another easy run, similar route as today. I’m doing mostly moderate runs this week after Saturday’s race, the only speed work will on Thursday.

 

Do you get to see your extended family often? Is there anything you’ve quit eating?



 

Coffee Addiction, Ice Cream, and the Coolest Bib Number I will Ever Get

I actually went to sleep after 10:00 PM last night, because I knew I wouldn’t be running this morning, or tomorrow. 2 days straight of no running or working out, brought to me by tapering.

 
I didn’t drink coffee for breakfast today.
No, not because I didn’t need it due to waking up 2 hours later than usual, but because I wanted to drink my new health elixir (aka green juice), which a coworker brings me to work, on an empty stomach.

 
I had the juice when I got to the office at 08:30, and a granola bar about half an hour later. Gave the juice some time to work its magic on me.
I wonder if it makes a difference to drink it on an empty stomach or not, but it usually doesn’t happen that I come to work without first having breakfast and going for a run, so today was a good day to try.

 
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I’m no longer able to drink office coffee, it’s just too bad, so that’s how “no coffee” happened this morning.
I saw a really good tip on Single-Tracked Mind’s blog about withdrawing caffeine for a couple days before a race, and then drinking coffee on race morning to get an extra boost, so I thought I might give that a try for my 10K race on Saturday, since I had one morning of no coffee under my belt already.

 
However at noon I made an emergency call to a friend to go out for coffee, yep, I’m addicted I guess. I couldn’t stand the headache any longer, which of course went away after the first sip.

 
See the empty coffee cup? It took me about 30 seconds to finish it.

 
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Coffee and ice cream loading with a good friend. It made me happy.

 
And then I got an email about the race I’m running on Saturday, letting me know of my bib number: 888.
OMG. Is that a cool number or what? Now I have to rock that race. The best bib number I’ll ever get just cannot go wasted.

 
According to a random blog on the internet, 888 is the luckiest number in Chinese numerology. I will be able to confirm or refute that piece of information on Saturday morning.

 
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Are you physically addicted to coffee? From all the bib numbers you got, do you have a favorite?



 

HIIT Run Outside, and Hooked on the Green Stuff

Yesterday I did an interval run outside, as opposed to the treadmill, for the first time.
I set my Garmin to give me half KM (500 meters) splits, so I could alternate between hard and easy, 500 meters each.
I enjoy doing interval runs because they are fun, they go by fast, and I know they help me get faster. But having to actually think about my pace, instead of just setting the number on the treadmill, was really hard.

 
I don’t know if this is an issue only I have, but my Garmin is not great at giving me the exact instant pace I’m running. The splits are perfect it seems, but if I look at my watch at any given time, especially if I recently changed my speed, the display of instant pace is quite off. I tried to go by feel, and for fear of running slower than I had planned, I ended up not only running faster, but each interval is not even similar to the previous one.

 
It was a good run but all over the place. The one thing I’m happy about is to see the last fast split at 03:54 Min/KM (06:16 Min/Mile). That’s a new pace for me, even if I only kept it for 500 meters.

 
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The wife of a coworker has a home business where she makes fresh juice every day and delivers it. My coworker brought me one the other day to try, and now I’m hooked and ended up signing up for weekly deliveries. Nice trick.
The taste wasn’t the best, but definitely drinkable. And I could almost feel the vitamins and minerals going into my cells and making me healthier!
With that being said, I drink it as an addition to everything else I eat and drink daily. I actually had the juice after having a post workout snack of a Clif bar and a shake with banana, melon, soy milk, and flaxseed. Replacing meals with juice on a regular basis and for long periods of time sounds crazy to me.

 
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Do you drink freshly pressed juice? What is your opinion on juice cleansing? If you have a GPS watch, is the instant pace precise?

(sorry but I have to figure the GPS one out, it drove me cray yesterday).