Category Archives: My life

I Didn’t Do Anything this Weekend, and #30summerdays Photo Challenge (days 2-8)

Except for running and getting coffee, I didn’t leave the house all weekend, and it was the most amazing weekend ever.
Every now and then I need a few days of doing nothing for a while. Sure, it sounds like a waste of time, I could have gone on a trip or to the park or at least do some shopping. But it wasn’t a waste at all.

 
It seems like life responsibilities always take away from the fun things we want to do, although they aren’t one bit less important, like playing with the kids, cooking, baking, taking naps, and getting home pedicures and manicures for me and my little girl.

 
I got a couple of good long runs in, so I was relaxed and happy. I am aware of the fact that I wouldn’t have been the most pleasant person to stay home with, without getting my running done.

 
#30summerdays Photo Challenge: Day 2 through 8

 
I’m really enjoying doing the #30summerdays photo challenge.
I’m not trying to take particularly pretty or interesting pictures. The goal for me doing this challenge is to take more pictures of my life and share them with you. I also love randomly looking through my phone pics a while later and remembering all the simple moments, when they become good memories they don’t seem so simple anymore.

 
Day 1 is here

 
Day 2: Monday, ugh! What’s keeping you going today?
Quite obvious, but coffee gets me going every day. 2 cups before I go work out, and another one in shake form after my workout, that keeps me awake all day.
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Day 3: Who made you smile today?
My little girl, she’s such a source of smiling/laughter in my life.
We were watching my oldest during his swim lesson and she wanted to go in the pool, so she was crying. Eventually I started taking pictures of us to distract her, and she was a happy girl again.
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Day 4: Look up. What do you see?
I love flying and I work for an airline. When I think of the sky, I think of planes. And I get to see them often too, right over my head!
This picture is from a past vacation to St. Marteen in the Caribbean, where the airport is right by the beach and they fly literally right above your head, quite an experience.
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Day 5: #TBT Share a photo from a past summer trip!
Our first and last family trip to Uruguay, where I grew up. I wish I could go more often to visit family and friends, and for my kids to get a stronger sense of the culture I grew up in.
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Day 6: National Doughnut Day! Snap a pic celebrating! Or, what did you have instead?!
We don’t eat a lot of doughnuts in Israel, but croissants and all kinds of sweet baked goods are one of my favorite treats.
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Day 7: Saturday! What are you up to?
Family time and running!
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Day 8: Time to relax before the start of the week. What does relaxing look like to you?
Long overdue pedicure and a funny movie while the kids took a nap, so relaxing!
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Do you enjoy doing challenges? Which kind of challenge is your favorite: fitness, pictures, etc?



 

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June Photo A Day Challenge #30summerdays – DAY 1 IS TODAY!

Reading through my favorite blogs this morning, I saw a post from Carrots ‘N’ Cake about a photo challenge: June Photo a Day Challenge #30summerdays.
I like capturing my life in pictures and sharing them, but because I’m sometimes so busy that I forget to take pictures of the most amazing things, or the simplest things! that happen to me, a challenge is a great way to remember to take my camera out more and freeze a moment.
The same way some people need a fitness challenge to stay motivated, I need a picture challenge to use my camera!

 
I will be doing this challenge and posting the pictures on Instagram daily, and on the blog every few days.
Below Day 1 is the list of what the picture should be about every day, in case you want to do the challenge too!

 
DAY 1: Rabbit, Rabbit! What brings you good luck?

 
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I am not a superstitious person, and I don’t particularly like wearing jewelry, but since seeing a ‘kids’ charm on a friend before I even had any kids of my own, I decided I’d want a charm like that when I had kids.
I had a beautiful charm of a boy after my son was born, and after my girl was born 3 years later I switched to this one.
I take it off to sleep and to work out, but other than that I always put it on, even if I’m going to the grocery store or even staying home. This way I have my kids with me all the time, yes, even when I’m with them.

 
Picture Subject June 1st through June 30th:
1 – Rabbit, Rabbit! What brings you good luck?
2 – Monday, ugh! What’s keeping you going today?
3 – Who made you smile today?
4 – Look up. What do you see?
5 – #TBT Share a photo from a past summer trip!
6 – National Doughnut Day! Snap a pic celebrating! Or, what did you have instead?!
7 – Saturday! What are you up to?
8 – Time to relax before the start of the week. What does relaxing look like to you?
9 – Manic Monday! What’s giving you a case of the Mondays?
10 – Is the sun out? Snap a pic! If not, what’s it like out there?
11 – Get over the hump of the week. How were you productive today?
12 – Treat yourself, it’s almost the weekend!
13 – Friday the 13th! Are you superstitious and ducking for cover, or out and about?
14 – Flag Day! Got one flying in the warm breeze?
15 – Happy Father’s Day! Snap a pic or share one of an awesome dad!
16 – Monday motivation. What motivates you?
17 – Got a pet? Share them with the world!
18 – Stretch those legs mid-week and go outside or for a walk. Snap and share!
19 – #OOTD, what are you wearing? Got your summer clothes on?!
20 – Happy Friday! You made it! Smile and say cheese
21 – HAPPY SUMMER! Take a picture of what summer looks like to you to celebrate!
22 – Sunday Pancakes! Do you have a Sunday breakfast routine?
23 – Got those sandals out? What’s your favorite pair?
24 – What made you happy today?
25 – Are the flowers blooming? Take a picture of your favorite!
26 – Wehew, it’s hot out there. How are you cooling down?
27 – Last Friday of the month, what are you up to?
28 – Is today a beach day? Snap a pic and make everyone jealous!
29 – Go out for a picnic! Make sure to take a picture!
30 – Last day of June, how are you sending it off?

 

Do you believe in luck? Do you have a good luck charm?



 

My Mary Poppins Gym Bag and Locker

I always wonder how other people go to the gym and manage to bring only a small bag.
Despite having my own locker where I leave a bunch of stuff, my gym bag always feels like it’s about to explode. I feel like Mary Poppins (or Dora the Explorer for you youngsters) taking stuff and more stuff out of my backpack.

 
I shower at the gym between 3 and 5 times a week, so I like to leave as much as I can in my locker. I buy doubles of a lot of personal items and just leave one at the gym.

 
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What’s in my locker:
* Makeup: makeup case with brushes, foundation, concealer, loose powder, blush, bronzer, mascara, 2 eye shadow cases, and a few eyeliners
* Hair care: shampoo and conditioner, a couple of hair treatments (the kind you leave on for a few minutes and rinse off), and after shower care such as hair oil, hair gel, heat protector, hair brush, hairdryer
* Body care: deodorant, liquid shower soap, body lotion with SPF and without, body spray, face lotion SPF, perfume, razor, Q-tips, sponge
* Pool gear: flip flops, googles, haircap

 
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What’s in my bag:
* Clean clothes, usually work clothes
* Shoes, usually low/comfy sandals to drive around, and I leave my work sandals in my car to put on when I get to work
* My swimsuit if I’ll be swimming
* A big bath towel
* A small towel to have by me when I work out
* IPod
* Hair ties
* NUUN
* Water bottle
* Keys
* IPhone

 
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Do you take a bag with you when you work out? Do you take a lot of stuff with you?



 

Training Goals for the Off Season, and 2 Races

After my last 10K I thought I wouldn’t be racing for some time, summer is approaching and it’s getting too warm, there aren’t many races happening.
However, I have found 2 races I want to run in the coming month, one is a 5K this Friday organized by a “Run at Work” group, that’s my loose translation of the name of the group in Hebrew, but basically a few runners from different work companies in Israel.
The other is a 10K night run in the park, I’m not very excited about racing in the park, especially at night, but both these races I want to run for fun. Yes, I want to concentrate on training and taking it easy for a few months, and I don’t want a race to take away from that.

 
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I want to train hard but also light… if that makes sense, or at least lighter/smarter than I’ve been training. Stay strong, build some speed, but at the same time find the balance to get some rest, so I can start marathon training in September.
I haven’t decided on a marathon yet, but I want to run one this winter, and since I want to run it in Israel as opposed to flying somewhere, my options are relatively limited. But then I only need one.

 
A few of the main points I’ve built my upcoming training around:

 
Distance: I want to stay steady with 65K/40M a week, which is not a distance I’ve been running for long, although I was at 60K/37M for a while. I’m feeling fine with 65K, and want to get even more used to it during the summer, so I can safely go up a bit come marathon training.

 
Lighter weeks: I’m planning on making a week every 2-3 weeks a lighter week, about 50K/31M. Replacing my long run with a shorter run will take care of that, and hopefully my legs will feel and appreciate the rest.

 
Speed: There’s a line that kept coming up in the running articles I’ve read in the last few weeks: “keep your slow runs slow, and your fast runs fast”. I haven’t been good at doing this in the past, I can push at the fast runs, but then the slow runs become moderate or even fast-ish sometimes. I admit this gives me a confidence push, but it’s just not smart training. I’m aiming for my speed time to be no more than 15% of my total weekly running time (although I am taking it up a notch speed wise on my intervals and tempo runs so I can gain some speed), and the rest will be mostly easy, with some moderate runs as well. I must learn to keep an eye on my watch and slow down when I have to.

 
Strength: I don’t usually skip workouts, but when I’m low on time or have to skip a session, it’s strength training that I give up first. I need to keep a balance between running, swimming, strength and core work, and not always skip (even if for good reason) what I like the least.

 
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On the home front, I stayed home from work today because my boy is sick. Wish he didn’t have to be sick for us to be able to get a quality time day together. I took him to the doctor and walked around the mall for a bit when we went to buy his medicine, since he was feeling well from the effect of the fever reducer.
I bought him the World Cup sticker album and we’ve been pretty busy with that all afternoon.

 
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And new earrings for his sister, because we couldn’t come home without something for her as well. He’s such a good brother.

 
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Any training mistakes you’ve realized you were making?

For me, not enough runs at an easy pace.

Who are you rooting for in the World Cup?

Uruguay!

 

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?