Day 4 & 5: Elf for Health

Day 4

Thursday the challenge was make a phone call. We have turned into a generation that texts. We seem to not even find the time to email anymore. Making a phone call is certainly something unheard of. I really can't think of the last time I purposefully picked up my phone to call someone to just sit and have a conversation.

I carved out the time to call my mom, and just talk. Even though we have had a great weekend, it was nice to hear a voice from home. A voice I've spent all but 3 or 4 Thanksgivings with. We chatted about the day and our shopping plans for Friday.


Day 5

Friday, the challenge was to track your water in take. This has always been hard for me. Yet, when I seriously track my water, it is easier for me to keep drinking it. However, it isn't a habit. So I did pretty poorly, and drank only about 25 ounces.


How are you going to treat yourself today?



Day 3: Elf for Health

Wednesday the challenge was to find and do a new workout.

I did this HIIT video:

If you can't don't want to watch all 28 minutes, here is the Reader's Digest version: warm up- 30 seconds each of jogging in place, side step pulls, boxer shuffle, squats, and jumping jacks. HIIT portion- 20 seconds on, 10 second rest, 4 intervals each of burpees, crisscross thigh slap jumps, high knees, split jump burpees, 3 mt climbers + 1 jump squat, rocket squats, high plank jacks, 3 runner switch, and lateral hop jumps. Cool down stretches- 15 seconds each of boxer shuffle, arm circles, arm cross swings, toe touch stretch, quad stretch, calf/shoulder stretch, downward dog, hamstring stretch, inside thigh stretch, deep glute stretch, and full body stretch.

I was tired. In fact, I told my Facebook friends I may have died a little inside. I certainly was ready for a nap anyway. Too bad I had to finish up getting ready for the trip.

Will I do the HIIT workout again? Sure. I liked the workout, it kept my attention, it made me sweat. What more could I ask for? I'm thinking about adding it to my Thursday mornings. When it's not a holiday of course!

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Who are you going to call today?

Happy Turkey Day Eve

I had a great low key morning with the kids.

We HIIT it up, they did some of the exercises too. They would do every other set. They were pretty funny to watch, I'm sure I was too. Ha. I'll talk about that more in the morning.

After a shower, bathes and speedy room cleanings, we met my mom for lunch at Frisch's to use up the kids Halloween coupons. I introduced Lydia to pickles.


Not sure she was a fan. But something sure had her eye. . .



You know it's officially a road trip when:




And then getting cut off with no where to go inches from the entrance to the toll booth. Very memorable. I hope they enjoy their extra 30 seconds with their family. Come on people!

Stupid Human Trick. McKinney Edition: The West Virginia to Virginia tunnel. Could you hold your breath the whole way through? Chad can. Danielle failed. It is the highlight of the drive for the kids. It is pretty cool.



What's your go to road trip snack? Sour straws and Dr. Pepper for me!

Any road trip gripes?

Everyone have a great day tomorrow with your families! Travel safe!



Day 2, Elf for Health



The challenge for Tuesday was to "unsubscribe".

It's amazing how cluttered my blog roll had gotten. I mean, there were posts that when I saw the author, I'd immediately "mark as read" in my bloglovin' app. It was time. 10 blogs down for the count.

I took it into unfriending territory as well. My friend list is 25 people lighter. Isn't it a breath of fresh air to have all the drama gone out of your news feed?

How did your unsubscribe day go?


Woot! Thanksgiving break!

After a late start to the morning, I got my Morning Yoga in after I sent the kids off to school and Lydia was eating her breakfast. I instantly felt better about the day. I'm totally making this a habit!
And then I was served my morning coffee. Good thing I keep that man around. He is good to me.

Today, my mission was to clean up a little. I like to come home to a clean house. I can't help it, it's what my mamma taught me. And a clean house will try make up for it being 5* in the house when we get home. Miss Lydia had other plans for me, she finally went down for her nap at 3:13 which meant I had exactly 27 minutes to clean 3 bathrooms, hang up laundry that didn't get packed, and everything else on my to-do list. I did get the bathrooms clean anyway.

This afternoon, the kids got off the bus chatty and excited for the weekend. I could get used to this no homework business! Hello Thanksgiving Break!


I got into doing some research (read scouring YouTube) for my Elf for Health challenge. Given my busy day of the last minute things and spending some extra time with all the kids, and answering "how much longer until daddy gets home?" about 700 times, I settled on this short HIIT workout:

Have you thought about your new workout for tomorrow?



Day 1, Elf for Health


Check out this post on The Lean Green Bean blog, they'll explain it all.

I'm arriving late to the party. I only just saw this challenge the other day on this awesome post on Olive to Run. I'm sure she mentioned it before, but I clearly was not paying attention.

Anyway, I'm all signed up- but I missed the deadline for the 1st round. So, I'll start being an Elf in round 2. Do you see my new elf button?! Awesome possum!

The challenge for Monday was go meatless. I failed. I'll start my excuses now. 1- I didn't find the challenge until Sunday. 2- I wasn't about to go to the grocery store when we're leaving in a few days for the long weekend. 3- My mission of emptying the fridge would be compromised. 4- I wasn't sure I was going to participate until late Monday afternoon, and my pork chops were already in the crockpot.

How did you do?



I had a good start to the morning. I did.

I was feeling really proud of myself this morning when I got up to do Morning Yoga. A glorious 21 minutes to wake up all by myself.

I also did the Dynamic Warmup video before I went out for my run.

And then this happened:

Yep, as I was starting out on my 10 mile run this morning, I realized I didn't put my chews in my spi-belt. So, I did 4 miles in the very freezing cold. I drove home, ate some chews and then out for another 3 miles around the neighborhood. A total of 7 miles, average pace 9:23 per mile. Better luck next time. . .

I also forgot to do my after run yoga. Fail.

BUT, I did get myself plus 3 kids packed for the weekend. That almost makes up for forgetting yoga.


What is your go to cold weather running gear?

Today, I went with leggings under my skirt, 2 long sleeved shirts, a plain ole hooded sweatshirt, gloves, and some ear grips. My sweatshirt was on a mission to choke me. Finally after 6 miles, I was warm enough to take it off and carry it around my waist. The ear things lasted less than 3 minutes, they did not work for me- between my sunglasses and my JayBird Freedoms, I thought my head might explode. I'm going to have to rethink this situation.


T-day week

Here we are the last week of November. How did that happen? And what a month it has been!

In a nutshell:

<costume party>
<best friends like their mamas?!>


<RockStar lunch with Madison>
<a little week night date night Pumpkin and cheesecake gelato>

<a Monday morning run with my side kick (well, I ran, she went on a walk with daddy)>


<this foxy guy joined us too>


<Thanksgiving lunch at school with the cutest boy with bed head>


<And of course: Catching Fire :) yes, we did share with our husbands. thanks for the pic Philip>


So, how are your November goals going?

I've pretty much failed at mine. Numerically anyway. I took some extra rest days after starting/trying a few different exercises, and after running too hard once- but those squats and those 8:40s minute miles were completely worth it.

I also found this yoga video:

It *may* make my mornings happier.

And this one:

Best sleep I've had in months! I pretty much fell asleep on the living room floor.

Yoga with Adrienne has some great foundational videos for beginners, you should check her out.

And for some dynamic warmup to get your blood going before going out into the cold:



What are your December goals?

I would like to up my "everyday" mileage to 5 miles. Realistically, that would be my Wednesday and Friday runs. I will continue to alternate my Mondays between a 10 miler and some Yassos. Tuesdays and Thursdays, I will do some core/strength training exercises. Tuesdays may also consist of a recovery 3 miles, depending on how my legs feel from Monday.

This will in turn up my monthly mileage. I'm hoping about 75 miles for December, or about 15 more miles than I ran in October and November.

I'm also loving this challenge.



What are your Thanksgiving plans?

*heading to NC for McKinney family time. Must. Get. Packing.

Favorite pie?

*pumpkin of course!

Black Friday, yes or no?

*of course! Can't wait to get out with MIL and SIL and all the crazies!



Kick Monday in the teeth

Hello Monday!

Monday's are usually just an extension of our weekend, since it is Chad's day off. After we got the big kids off to school and took our time eating our breakfast and drinking our latté and playing with Lydia.

And then I headed out for my run. On the schedule today was my first Yasso 800 workout. My goal was to run the intervals in 4 minutes. I warmed up for 15 minutes at 9:54min/mi pace and then 4 half mile intervals (since I wasn't at the track) timed at 3:59, 3:58.5, 4:04, and 4:18. Each interval was followed by a 4 minute recovery walk. I finished up with an 11 minute cool down at 10:20ish per mile pace. All totaling 5.5 miles.

See that? Yeah, I completely choked on that last interval. I wanted another minute to recover after that 3rd interval- I didn't quite have my breath back and thus struggled through every second of the 4 minutes and 18 seconds.

I find it interesting that my legs are not as tired (read sore) as I thought they should be or would be. What held me back on this run was my breathing. Hopefully, as I continue with this workout, I will get stronger and it will get easier.

All in all, I pretty much thought it was a great workout. I look forward to taking the next step with 5 intervals in 2 weeks.

You can read about the Yasso theory here. I have adjusted it to measure my fitness for a goal of a sub 2 half marathon next spring. No special calculations, because of course, reality is a 2 hour half would not equal a 4 hour marathon.

And I'll leave you with these guys:

<behind the scenes Chad was acting out Wreck it Ralph, ha!>



Happy November 1st!

Happy fall! It's finally starting to look the part outside.

<morning view at the bike trail>


Even though I had big plans for the week, I took it a little easier and skipped the 5 miles on Wednesday and 3 miles on Thursday.

Today, I did run my planned 3 miles and continued to walk another 2 miles.

AND I rocked yoga this week. AND planks. I know. Who am I?

Next week, it will all come together I'm sure. After all, they (whoever "they" are) say that it takes as many days as miles raced to fully recover. Which is today.


I love these kiddos:

<I have no idea!>


And then there's this girl:

<she loves watching the big kids!>


Who made new goals for November? What are they?

- nothing major- just run or walk 100 miles. . . Yeah- we'll see :)

- and I'm organizing and simplifying my life. Cleaning out. Making (the easy part) and STICKING to schedules. I think this will help me feel a little more in charge of my duties instead of a pawn. So, for the next few weeks, I plan to account for all of my waking minutes- even if it's play (and there will be plenty of play in our day).