weekly workouts: april 18-24

Oh goodness.  It has been A WEEK…

The Concrete Runner - weekly workouts (1)

I played Meet Director at 2 middle school track meets we hosted this week – Tuesday and Saturday.  Luckily, Tuesday got rained out because as it turns out, I have no idea what the heck I am doing.  Thankfully, by Saturday, I was completely organized and things went really well.  I mean, I owe A LOT to the other coaches – without them, I would’ve been completely overwhelmed and lost.  But, it’s done and over with and I can breathe a little bit again.  Only 2 more weeks of track left, and only 3 more practices.  Should I mention that in 10 days, we have 5 track meets?  Yeah, I’m enjoying it, but I’m ready for the season to be over with.  Oh, and it was a full moon last week.  You can imagine just how well behaved 120 middle schoolers are after testing all day and then coming to track…

So, it was not my greatest week of running, but that’s OK.  I still have another week off before I jump back in to training at the beginning of May.  Every run was much needed though, thanks to everything the week had in store.  (Believe me, there was much more drama involved in those 2 track meets than I’m leading on to…)  It was a great reminder of exactly why I run.  I need running for my mental health.  I am able to process my thoughts better.  I am able to be completely emotional when I need to.  I am able to build up my confidence in order to really tackle everything I need to get done – and stop myself from talking me out of things I’m scared to do.  It’s my stress relief, confidence booster, and therapist.  I just gotta have it!

Monday:  3 mile AM easy run + 1 mile PM easy run (8:15/mile, 7:50/mile)

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Tuesday:  10 x 200m w/ 200m recovery (3.51 miles @ 8:05/mile)

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Wednesday:  Skechers Fun Run with True Runner (4.62 miles @ 8:29/mile)

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Thursday:  OFF

Friday:  30 minute tempo run – 10 minute warmup, 10 minute @ 7:00-7:21, 10 minute cool down (3.82 miles @ 7:51)

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Saturday:  OFF – but I certainly got my steps in!

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Sunday:  60 minute long run (7.30 miles @ 8:13/mile)

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Total:  23.25 miles

I’m praying for a much less eventful week this week.  It’s still going to be busy week (Matt has meets Monday + Tuesday, I have meets Wednesday + Thursday, and then I am working a meet on Friday…), but thankfully, not nearly as crazy as last week.  Hope everyone else’s week is flawless and uneventful!

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skechers fun run @ true runner st. louis

**Disclaimer:  This post is sponsored by Vocal Point and True Runner.  All opinions are my own.**

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Audrey at Vocal Point to head on over to True Runner out in Brentwood, MO to attend one of their Wednesday evening fun runs.  I’ve known about True Runner since they opened a few years ago, but since Brentwood is about 30 minutes from where we live, I never had the chance to go check out the store.

True Runner St. Louis hosts bi-weekly fun runs on Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings.  And one of the best parts about these fun runs is that they usually have a “sponsor” or a theme for runners to enjoy.  This past weekend, they had a Strange Donuts fun run.  I was fortunate enough to participate in a Skechers Fun Run this past Wednesday.  A sales rep from Skechers was at the store and let us test drive some of their shoes on a 4-5 mile loop around the area.  It’s not every day you actually truly get to test out the shoes on a real run before deciding whether or not to buy them.  Count me in, please!

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I arrived at True Runner about 10 minutes before the run started and was immediately greeted by Theresa, the assistant store manager.  She asked me a couple of questions and explained to me the fun run.  She was so nice and immediately made me feel comfortable in the store.  I walked around the store a little bit, checked out some of my favorites and some new fun apparel before going to try on some Skechers.

I ended up asking to try some lightweight running shoes, since those tend to be the ones my feet like the best.  Something low to the ground that feels more like a racing flat than a training shoe, but can be worn for distances anywhere from the 5K to the marathon, since, you know, I like to run them all!  Adam with Skechers gave me some Skecher GOrun 4’s to try out on our run.  I could immediately tell I was going to like them once I slipped them on as they felt like I was just wearing my socks.  The less I think about my shoes on a run, the better!

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Thad was our store lead runner for the night, and he briefly explained the route we were going to take, which would give us a little over 4 miles.  Since Adam and I were the only ones who hadn’t run with the group before, they asked our pace – luckily, most of them would be running right around an 8:45/mile pace, which is the perfect easy pace for me.

It was a nice little group and I did my best to make some small talk, even though I am completely socially awkward and not outgoing in the slightest.  Luckily, it’s easy for me to talk about running since that is my main hobby and my second hobby (blogging) is all about running as well.  We chatted about Boston, Meb, Skechers, Chicago, and what it’s like to travel the midwest as an employee for Skechers, promoting their running shoes and going on group runs.  Seriously – I want that job…

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Once we go about 2.5 miles into our run, we arrived at Shaw Park and did a loop around the park before heading back toward the store.  At this point, we also began to pick up the pace.  We went from running 9:00/mile the first mile, to starting to tick off 7:30/mile at the end of the run.  And I felt awesome!  There was a nice, light rain, my legs felt great, and best of all, the shoes felt amazing!

We ended up running 4.62 miles in just under 40 minutes, averaging 8:30 per mile.  Not too shabby for a Wednesday evening – and even better since it wasn’t at 4 in the morning!  True Runner provided us with pizza and water after the run, and I sat around for a little bit talking to Adam, Theresa, Thad, and Jenny, the store manager.  I said it a few weeks ago, but I’ll say it again:  Runners are seriously the nicest people ever!

I knew I wasn’t going to leave the store empty handed, but I just wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted because there was so much awesome stuff in the store to choose from.  I knew I needed some new compression socks, but I just kept going back to those shoes.  I didn’t want to take them off and put my current running shoes back on.  I was tempted to wear them out of the store, but I figured that would be frowned upon…

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And then I spotted the “new arrival” sign on the same pair of Skechers I wore on the fun run except in pink and black instead of teal and gray.  And with that, I came home with a brand new pair of running shoes!  They are going to be perfect for training for Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago this summer!

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Thanks again to Vocal Point and True Runner for the fun running experience!  I can’t wait to go back for another fun run!  Oh, and the best part about their fun run?  If you participate in 10 runs, you get a $20 store credit!  You better believe I’m going to try to get those 10 runs in!

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stitch fix review // april

I actually have 2 reviews to share – Stitch Fix and Wantable – but I will leave my other review for next week.  Plus, I feel that “dress up” clothes (at least they are for me) are much more exciting than workout clothes.  Which I think is why I am still loving Stitch Fix and continue to plan on getting new boxes every couple of months.

My last Fix was back in January, so I was super excited to get another one last week.  For my April Fix, I asked for mostly summer-style clothing.  The weather is starting to get warmer (you’ll notice by my super awesome track tan – hello, sunburn!), so I specifically asked for some loose, flowy tank tops, and maybe some cute shorts for summer.

The Concrete Runner - Stitch Fix Review April 2016

Again, my stylist totally nailed it…

Kathandra Woven Placket Knit Top

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I wasn’t crazy about the pattern on the one at first, but I absolutely loved the style.  I liked the wider strap that cut in a little closer to the neck line, but was still able to cover up my bra straps.  Such a cute top – definitely a keeper!

Nanor Pleat Tab Top

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I think the only thing I really didn’t like about this top is that it was wrinkled!  Ha!  Cute shoulder details, nice a loose, and I love the pleats on the bottom.  Another keeper!

Pettigrew Open Flap Neck Top

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This was definitely my favorite of the 3 tops I was sent.  I actually wore this the day my box arrived, I loved it so much!  Very simple, but still had a cute pattern to it.  And was exactly what I asked for in terms of tank tops.  Keep!

Kate Distressed Boyfriend Jean

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I’ve been gawking at boyfriend jeans on Pinterest for a little while now.  They just look so cute, both casual and a little dressed up.  These were not exactly what I had in mind, though, and were definitely not the cute summer shorts I had asked for.  But, I really liked these more than I anticipated.  They were a bit looser than I would have liked and maybe just a bit too big, but nothing a belt can’t fix.  I was hesitant, but I decided to keep it.

Miz Mooz Floral Sneakers

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So, Stitch Fix just started sending shoes as part of their Fixes.  While I didn’t specifically ask for shoes, nor did I really want a pair, I ended up really, really liking these.  The only problem was that they were too small.  Boo.  But, after a quick contact to my stylist, she found a pair a size bigger and I was able to send back these for the bigger size!  That’s not always possible because of what they have in stock, but I was very thankful they were able to find me a bigger size.  Because these were definitely ones I wanted to keep!

Yup, I ended up keeping the entire box – again!  I think I’m on my 5th fix now, and I’ve kept everything in 3 of my 5 total boxes!  My clothes from Stitch Fix are starting to become my essentials for the weekend (keep in mind, I only wear workout clothes during the week as a P.E. teacher) – I’m actually getting to the point where I’m starting to purge my closet of all but these clothes.  I’m really starting to think about doing a capsule wardrobe because I just don’t need that much clothing and I am getting such great clothes that I can change up and mix and match with other things in my closet already.  I’m pumped to be getting another fix in a few months (I decided to get one a month earlier than I had planned – so I’ll be getting my next one in June instead of July) – I’m hoping I can score some really awesome summer clothes before all of our vacations!

As always, if you haven’t tried Stitch Fix out yet, you definitely should!  I got my mom a gift certificate for Christmas and I think she really enjoyed getting clothes she could try on at home.  Probably not as much as me because my mom loves to shop (I HATE clothes shopping), but I know she said she enjoyed it.  It’s definitely worth the $20 styling fee just to try it out, but I warn you, they get better over time.  So, if you’re not happy with your first one, change your preferences, be more specific, and get that Pinterest board going so your stylist knows exactly what you’re looking for!  I’ve literally gotten things that I’ve pinned in my Fixes, so it is worth it!

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