Trial and error

Note: if you skim all this, do me a favor and don't miss the question at the bottom. :)

My training had a couple of self-inflicted hiccups Saturday.  First, I got to go riding with my awesome sister-in-law on Saturday. She just got a road bike for her birthday in April and is planning to do the Tour de Donut this year, so she wanted to get in some miles.  We planned to meet at my house at 7 am, and since she was running a little behind I had time to check my tires and make sure they were properly aired up.  I felt all proud and responsible.

The road bike has presta valves (I included the link because I have to look it up every time to remember which is which), which are new for me.  I knew there was a little piece that had to be loosened to put in the air, and I took it off.  Ummm...bad move.  I got the tire aired out, and then as soon as I took the pump off the tube deflated.  So, instead of me being ready to go when Kristy got there, she had to wait while I changed my tire.  Grrr.  On the other hand, I managed successfully, so I guess it was good practice.

Kristy bike
Kristy on the trail
We rode on the local bike trails.  They're beautiful, lack car traffic and stoplights, and have a variety of different loops you can take.  The good/bad thing about them is that they are very flat.  It makes for an easier ride, but not the best training if you stick to them alone.  Even with the flat trails, though, both of our rears were ready for a little break and water refill a little more than halfway through.

All smiles
Truly unflattering picture of me.
We rode 27.5 miles and were very glad to have gotten an early start because the heat was climbing by the time we rolled back into my driveway.  Great ride!

After lunch and some picking up around the house, Jeff, D, and I went to the gym.  J wasn't excited to have to wait in one of the open areas outside of the gym while we worked out, but I bribed him with swimming afterwards.  I'm still sticking to my New Rules of Lifting for Women workout plan, and the first exercise on my list was squats.  Last time I'd done 65 pounds without trouble, so I bumped it up to 70.  As soon as I lifted the bar I was shocked by how much heavier that extra 5 pounds made it...I didn't remember 65 being bad at all.  Still, I got through both sets and wondered on and off for the rest of the day what the deal was.

I knew I had put on 70 pounds because I'd checked the weights a couple of times.  I just assumed that my math had been off in the past.  Eventually that afternoon I realized what the problem had been.  I forgot that the bar weighs 45 pounds and had loaded on an additional 70 instead of squatting 70 I was doing 115.  Oops.  Turns out I'm stronger than I had thought. :)

In addition to my dumber moments, I've managed to pack a lot into the last couple days. 

Saturday: bike ride, gym session, pool tag with J.

Sunday: We had a big group to play sand volleyball at Jeff's dad's. What a blast! For a while we even had three teams of 5, the rest of the time we just subbed in a player or two.  It's a lot of fun since my older boys are big enough to scare the crap out of me when they hit play with us, and both of them had friends who came along and added to the fun.

Monday: Got a tweet from Patrick while I was still in bed.

Of course I wanted to ride! I sent back that I could around 9:30, but I missed the reply and was in my pajamas when I opened the door at 9:45.  Sorry! 15 minutes later, though, we were out the door.  (Thank you, N, for babysitting.)  We rode almost the same route as I did with Kristy, and while for the most part I felt good, there were definitely times when I had to push to keep any time following a corner.  We rode 28 miles and I, at least, had a great time.  Hopefully I didn't slow down Patrick too much.

I hit the pool again with the boys, and the cool water felt great on a day where the temperature registered around 100.  Of course, everyone else in town had the same idea, but at least we got there before the pool reached capacity.  We had to leave in time for me to start supper and then get N. to club volleyball practice in St. Louis. 

These 2-3 times a week practices in St. Louis are a pain during the school year, but it's kind of nice during the summer because they practice early enough for me to run instead of sitting in a gym for 2 hours.  Of course, running in the afternoon in this area means you're looking at high temps, and Monday was no exception.  The heat was "down to" 94 by the time I put on my running shoes.  I used my 2Toms Blister Shield that Amanda won for me from Laima--I haven't had any blisters since I started using it (yea!) and discovered a new use for it yesterday.

I'm still getting used to the new bike seat, and with doing my two longest rides since March, I'm a little chafed and was already uncomfortable before starting out.  I wasn't looking forward to the sweat stinging my raw inner thighs and rear end, so it occurred to me that maybe the Blister Shield could help me out there, too.  To the casual passer-by, I probably looked a little like Pee Wee Herman in the back row of the movie theater, but I had no problems with stinging or chafing on my very hot, sweaty run, so it was worth it!

The trailhead for Grant's Trail is only about 8 minutes from N's gym, so it's super convenient.

Despite the heat and humidity, the trail was very busy with cyclists, walkers, rollerbladers, and a couple other runners.  The runners definitely looked the most miserable.  I haven't run much at all since the marathon, and I haven't run anything longer than 5 miles since then, so my only goal was to run 6 miles.  Well, to go 6 miles.  With the heat, I was fine with walking if I needed to.  I took it very easy and was very thankful for all of the shady spots.

The worst part was the third mile, not because it was so hard but because I thought it would never end.  The trail is marked in half mile increments and I kept waiting and waiting for that 2.5 mile mark.  It was the longest half mile I've ever run...and of course it was the wide open part of the trail with sun beating down on me.  Finally I saw the trail marker up ahead of me and was praying that I had somehow missed the 2.5 marker.  Yes! 3 miles...I could turn around.

I actually finished a lot stronger than I started...of course, I knew I had an extra water bottle in the car.  Splits were 11:00, 11:05, 11:06, 11:07, 10:53, 10:31.  6 miles, done. :) I was very, very glad to have that one finished, and I made it back just as N's practice had finished.  Good thing I didn't have to walk much!

When I got home, Jeff and I made a quick trip to the gym so that I could do my New Rules workout...perhaps not the best idea to cram all that into one day, but it worked out. 

The Question: Along with the strength training, The New Rules is big on getting plenty of protein.  I'm used to eating for low-fat or just eating a fairly balanced diet, but trying to add protein is proving to be harder for me.  One of their recommendations is whey protein powder, which isn't cheap, so I've been trying (not so successfully) to come up with other ways.  Suggestions?  How do you increase the amount of protein in your diet?


  1. Holy girl! You really are Super...I can't believe how much you cram into a day! Impressive :)

  2. Don't know where you're getting protein, but I get this:

    It's super-high quality, tastes good (in my opinion), and it's not TOO expensive. It's 35 bucks for 31 servings of 20g of protein. If you buy two tubs, its 60 bucks for 62 servings. They also have free shipping, so you can get it for a little less than a buck a serving. Not cheap, but not terrible.

    I also eat a ton of eggs (I don't believe in the "eggs are bad for you b/c of the cholesterol" thing). Cottage cheese, tuna, and all kinds of beans are fairly cheap sources of protein as well.

    I've got some great cookbooks I can send to you to let you borrow if you want me to. You can give them back whenever we do a race together. Just email me your address, and I'll try to send those out if you're interested.

    Great job on the training! You're inspiring me to work that much harder.

  3. Chia seeds! Quinoa! Black beans and brown rice!

    Love the Peewee comment.

  4. I have protein in the form of meat or eggs at almost every meal.

    Egg white/canadian bacon veggie scramble every morning for breakfast.

    Turkey or tuna sandwich or stir fry at lunch.

    Spaghetti or tacos or burritos or grilled something for dinner.

    My snacks are often just smaller versions of my regular meals.

  5. there are some inexpensive plant based protein powder/shakes. my mind is blanking on brand names, but one of my fav's was a papayua based one. Frozen chix breast by the bag - easy defrost. boil them and slice up what you need for salads or just by itself. put the rest in the fridge. keeps for 2-3 days. i also do lots of spoon fulls of peanut butter throughout the day.

  6. If you eat meat, buying a bunch of boneless skinless chicken breasts on sale, and cooking them up, then gnawing on them throughout the day will get you all the protein you need.

    Also, egg whites.

  7. Pulled pork. BBQ brisket is also good.

  8. Beans! Quinoa, beans, chicken, beans. I don't use supplements so I can't offer an advice there. Egg beaters. Beans. Yes I eat a lot if beans!

    Dang are you busy!

  9. You are one strong lady! Wow!

    You are busy but loving it I am sure. Keep cool in the heat.

  10. The path is gorgeous, and you are awesome! Isn't it great to be off in the summer and getting so much done :)!?!?!

    I used to work with a trainer who was adamant I get in at least 100g of protein and since then I'm a wee-bit anal. If I can't get it in with chicken, I like the high protein yogurts but my favorite is a protein smoothie - yuuuuumy! It is pricey but it lasts a very long time (I use "Isopure" as it's the most absorbed protein powder out there) and you can find it online a little cheaper. The other day I saw it 40% off at 24-hour Fitness and stock piled! :)

  11. you are faster than you think or maybe I am slower than you think, anyway it was a good ride. As far as protein goes, when I became a vegetarian people always bugging me about where I got my protein from so I tracked what I ate and found that I was getting more than enough, so now I don't worry about it. You might be getting enough too, and not realize it.

  12. I agree with Patrick: there is protein in most of the things we eat and most of us get more than plenty! I picked up whey protein at Green Earth (unflavored) and they always have those $5 off coupons, but that powder stuff will count on their super discount Monday (first of each month). I wanted the whey for a recipe that it turns out the kids won't eat... I just keep thinking of those Era Plus commercials "Protein gets out Protein."

  13. There is definitely some debate as to how much protein people "need." Sure, we get enough in the foods we eat so that we are not protein deficient. But, a hard training athlete "needs" more than the average Joe to perform and recover optimally IMHO.

    The protein powders aren't magic. They're just a convenient way to boost your overall protein intake. You can and should get most of your protein from whole food sources.

    Just my two cents.

  14. Yes, you are SuperKate.
    I love the pictures.

  15. When my training volume was higher I was getting run down and decided to try upping my protein. I added a little at each meal and snack. After a morning workout I either had a glass of chocolate milk or vanilla whey powder mixed with white milk. For breakfast I added a yogurt. Meat or cheese and egg on a salad at lunch. Some nuts for afternoon snack (pistachios or almonds). Meat and milk for dinner. I think the extra protein helped.

    For chaffing, try some chamois creme or Aquaphor. I bought a big thing of Aquaphor in the baby section at Walmart, it seems to last longer than my Chamois Butt'r.


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