Happy Sunday evening! I’ve got a lot of stuff to cover today, including the best run of my life (so far), so here I go.
Holiday Party Week 1 Recap
As mentioned, my holiday party was on Friday night, and Leenae’s holiday party was last night. Here are some not-so-great pictures of the outfits + recycled hairdo I wore. We were running kind of late to both of the parties, so it was snap and go over here! I have a tendency to wear a lot of neutral colors, including LBDs. Why mess with a good thing?
Overall, I did okay with my tips for surviving the holidays. The exceptions to this were the booze rule at my party and the food rules (sort of) at Leenae’s. Leenae and I were so freakin tired before my party and literally laid in my bed for a good hour before even attempting to get ready. Once we got there, we hit the worst drink combo possible: vodka + Red Bull. Mixing any alcohol with energy drinks is not good for you, but we didn’t care at the time. Oh well.
As for Leenae’s party, I was ready to get my eat on at Texas de Brazil! I say that I sort of broke the rules at her holiday party because I made sure to load up on a ton of veggies from their amazing salad bar before getting to the meat.
I had asparagus, green beans, red + yellow bell peppers, button and portobella mushrooms, smoked salmon, shrimp, goat cheese, potatoes, and salsa. I forced myself to eat all of the greens before I could gorge on the meats coming around. A little fiber goes a long way…
I didn’t finish my veggies yet, but the gauchos were coming around super fast with yummy meats, so I let them put some on my plate while I finished up on the greens. I would have to say that Texas de Brazil was better this time around than last. I still think that Fogo de Chao is better, but this was still very good. If you go, make sure you get the picanha , the house special top sirloin because it is so good. Also, this is a great place for vegetarians. I’m not lying, you can ask for the salad bar only pricing and load up on a ton of vegetarian-friendly items that are high quality while your carnivorous friends stuff themselves on meat.
After dinner, Leenae and I joined some of her coworkers at Toby Keith’s bar to hang out for a bit more. I was good and only had half a glass of wine all night. I was a-okay with being sober after my holiday party on Friday.
Their large beers are served in mason jars. Isn’t that cute?
And that concludes week 1 of Christmas parties. I still have two more to attend this week…oy.
Long Run Sunday
I HAD MY FIRST DOUBLE DIGIT RUN!!! 10 MILES! OH MY GAWWWWDDDDDDD! Can you tell that I’m excited? Not at all, right?
I finished it in 2 hours, which I know is super slow for some of you readers, but that doesn’t dampen my sense of accomplishment at all :D Let’s start from the beginning. I finally had bananas on hand to make my preferred pre-running meal: Bagel Thin + Chia Charger + banana. I washed it all down with a sample of ZipFizz that I was sent (review to come later after a few more uses).
To be quite honest, I’d been dreading this run all week. Hell, I continued to dread the run for the first two miles of it today. There was just something mentally worrying about hitting double digits for the first time. Sure, I’ve had two 9-mile runs, but the thought of ten was unnerving. I started out suuuuuuper slow and was not feeling it AT ALL for about 2.5 miles: my legs felt heavy, I was getting really hot, and I kept telling myself I wouldn’t make it. So I did what every self-loving person would do. I told myself to SHUT THE F* UP.
I stopped at mile 2.5, tucked my hat into my SPIbelt (I love that thing immensely), rolled up my sleeves a bit, stretched, and reminded myself that I was doing this for me and had nothing to prove. Oh, and have some fun. That was all it took to change my FML-run to the absolute best run of my (very short) running life…so far.
It may have helped that the route was downhill for a good two miles after that point and that I got to run through one of my favorite Denver neighborhoods (Cherry Creek North…I wish). Whatever it was, I started smiling and enjoying myself. I was worried about running this 2.5-mile stretch on my way back that would be completely on packed snow, but that was one of the most enjoyable parts of my run. It was like going on a mini winter adventure or something. Had it been ice, I would have picked a sidewalk to run, but packed snow is pretty easy to run on. You do, however, feel it more in your legs from having to stabilize over the lumpy surface. And I digress, so back on topic.
I had a GU around mile 6.5, and that must have been the magic energy I needed to plow through the rest of my run. On my past 9-mile runs, I’ve always struggled through the 9th mile, so I expected a major slump to hit around mile 8. You know what, though? I had negative splits for the last 2 miles! I actually finished miles 9 and 10 faster than race pace, and both of those miles were at a gradual incline…what the? My legs were starting to feel slight discomfort at the faster pace, but my breathing felt great, and I was able to push through the uncomfortable phase and carry on faster and faster for 2 miles.
So, overall, what made this my best run so far? Although the negative splits were cool at the end, I genuinely had a great time. I was laughing at myself and smiling all though the last 7 miles of the run. What made me laugh the most while running is that I used to think people who enjoyed running were either insane or on something, and here I was willingly running on a Sunday afternoon. I was right about runners being on something. It’s the high you get from pushing your limits, having a therapy session with yourself, and getting a giant kick of endorphins. I’ve been off-and-on calling myself this for a little while, but after today, I finally believe it: I’m a crazy runner.
Question of the Day: What has been one of your accomplishments this past year?