My Week in Workouts – Summer is Here!

My week in workouts | happyfitmama.com

It’s another rundown of my week in workouts. It was a week of dealing with full on summer running. I’m not mad at the heat one bit. Bring.it.on.

I know this is a running and fitness blog but I have to acknowledge the state of our country right now. The killing of George Floyd made me sad and furious. As a white woman, I have no idea of what it means to be black. I feel helpless and I don’t know the right thing to say. So what I’m doing is listening, learning, donating, speaking up and showing up. I am educating myself with a list of anti-racist books. Things need to change.

Monday

Rest day except for an evening walk. I worked all day and by the time I was done I didn’t have the energy to do anything more than head out for a walk with the fam.

Tuesday

4 mile trail run, 9:57 avg pace

Outdoor Bootcamp strength intervals w/ 2 miles of running

I had seen some friends post about a new to me trail on Strava recently so I decided to check it out. It wasn’t anything spectacular but it was a nice change of scenery from the other local trails I’ve been running lately. The highlight of the run was finding a baby owl in the middle of the trail. When I spotted the owl, two big owls flew overhead and landed on trees nearby. At first I thought maybe it was a smaller owl who was attacked by the bigger two. It didn’t seem hurt so I then realized it was probably a baby. It was SO cute!

My week in workouts | happyfitmama.com

I called The Center for Wildlife to report it and they said they would swing by to check it out to make sure it was ok. If it was a baby, the parents would continue to feed it and care for it even if it fell out of the nest too soon. I didn’t hear anything back from The Center or see anything on their Facebook page so I hope it was all good.

Once I got home, I had planned for a strength session but opted for a bootcamp with the kiddos instead. They did great with bodyweight exercises like squats, push ups, planks, stair jumps, tricep dips and more. We did two 10 minute run/walk intervals to break it up. Can you believe they actually requested that we do a Mom bootcamp everyday? 🙂

My week in workouts | happyfitmama.com

Wednesday

5 mile trail run, 11:11 avg/pace

Evening flow yoga

The humidity was 100% even at 8 a.m.. I was sweating just getting dressed for my run. I thought about not taking Max with me but he gave me puppy dog eyes and I couldn’t resist.

The trail was mostly in the trees so at least we didn’t have direct sun. But still, we took it slow and easy. I spent most of the run with burning eyes thanks to a mix of allergies and sunscreen/sweat dripping into them. Even with those little annoying things, summer running is the best!

Thursday

6 mile road run, 9:30 avg/pace

full body strength training

Humidity was set to high once again. I was ready for a super sweaty sweatastic run to kick off the day. I felt like kicking things up a bit with a plan of stopping at every mile to perform squat jumps, split squat jumps, bounding, and skaters because…why not? 😉 In addition, I also found myself headed towards the big ass hill in town for repeats. Because…why not? Is it wrong that I enjoyed the plyo’s? Sick…I know.

Friday

Rest day

Saturday

8 mile road/trail run, 8:50 avg/pace

As someone who is used to running in the early morning, I really haven’t had to deal with full on summer sun. The sun is just starting to come up when I’m out on the road. But with my work schedule all over the place these days, I’m running at odd times. Case in point, Saturday. I had to work in the morning. When I got home, I decided to run. The kids wanted to join me on their bikes. Great! What I didn’t account for was that it was midday and 80+ degrees. And we all forgot to bring water. The last half of the run was brutal. We were all discussing what cold food and drinks we would be chugging once we got home. What I really wanted was a big margarita on the rocks with an extra salty rim. What I ended up with was a lemon popsicle, ice water and seltzer. Whomp, whomp, whomp.

Sunday

8.4 mile trail run, 10:45 avg/pace

What a difference a day makes! It was only 52 degrees when Kyle and I started off on our run. It was so cold! It was good to catch up and try to solve the worlds problems. I don’t think we did but it’s good to talk things out even if it is from 6 feet or more and we have to repeat what we said multiple times to hear each other.

A morning run through the woods and fields is not a bad way to start the day.

How was your week in workouts?

Linking up with the Weekly Run Down.

Best Calf Stretches for Runners

Best calf stretches for runners | happyfitmama.com

My nemesis has always been my pesky calves. While they are super strong, they are also tight AF the majority of the time. It’s a constant battle to keep my calves in a happy place. If my calves are happy that means my feet and ankles are equally as happy. I’ve had my fair share of foot and ankle issues over the years, including one of a the most hated injuries for a runner – Plantar Fasciitis. Along the way, I’ve learned that when I slack off on showing love to my calves, I pay the price.

You might be one of the lucky ones who has never felt the wrath of tight calves but maybe you started increasing your mileage during these odd pandemic times. Maybe your calves have started talking to you. My advice: take the call. Don’t ignore tight calves. It will catch up to you and you’ll be wishing you paid more attention to your calves.

Here’s the best calf stretches for runners that I’ve found to help me. It doesn’t take long to make a big difference. Hold each stretch for 30-60 seconds and you’ll be done in less than 5 minutes.

Double Calf Stretch

Lean into a wall or whatever you have near you while keeping both heels on the ground to feel a great stretch in both calves. If you can’t feel anything, stand back farther.

Best calf stretches for runners | happyfitmama.com

Traditional Calf Stretch

An oldie but a goodie that hits the calves in just the right spot. Take it up a notch by bringing your back foot in a bit while keeping a slight bend in your knee for a nice soleus stretch.

Best calf stretches for runners | happyfitmama.com

Heel Drop off a Step

Without a doubt, this is always my #1 stretch post run. I feel a stretch every single time. If you are short on time, you can always do both heels down but I feel a better stretch doing it as a single.

Best calf stretches for runners | happyfitmama.com

Single Leg Downward Facing Dog

I love down dog for stretching out my calves but I feel it a little bit more when I do it as a single leg.

Best calf stretches for runners | happyfitmama.com

Of course, I can’t talk about showing love to your calves without mentioning the foam roller or The Stick. It’s tough love for sure but rolling out your calves in addition to stretching are your best bets for injury free running. It’s easy to slack off on each but keep it up and you’ll notice a difference!

What are your go-to calf stretches?

Do you have an area that needs extra attention to stay injury free?

Linking up with Runners’ Roundup

My Week in Workouts

My week in workouts | happyfitmama.com

Another week down, another rundown of my week in workouts. Going into the week I felt like I needed a down week. No chasing vert. No picking up the pace on purpose. No distance goals. Just running what I felt like. I mean, that’s how I usually run with nothing to really train for right now but I’ll have a certain numbers in my head that I want to achieve for each run. This week…nothing.

Monday

strength training

It was our 18th wedding anniversary today! We celebrated with ordering curbside take out from a local restaurant. The pickings are slim right now but even more so on a Monday. Most restaurants are open for curbside Wednesday-Sunday or only the weekends. Not exactly the most fun way to celebrate our anniversary but we did the best we could with what we have.

My week in workouts | happyfitmama.com
Ron surprised me with an art project!

Prior to our date night in, I got a quick 30 minute full body strength training session in when I got home from work while Ron finished up his work day. I wasn’t horribly motivated but I committed myself to do something. Something is always better than nothing.

Tuesday

5 mile trail run

It feels like spring is here to stay…finally. I’m thoroughly enjoying the sunshine that seems to be in abundance lately. Max and I hit the trails where he embraced my “no plan” week of training. There was plenty of run, stop, sniff, pee, repeat…from Max, not me. 😉

Wednesday

5 mile trail run

strength training

It was another gorgeous day so Max and I hit the trails. We didn’t see another soul into we were almost back to the trailhead when we saw three women walking with a dog off leash. That’s totally fine if your dog doesn’t come barreling at me or my dog. However, just a PSA, if you know that your dog does not like other dogs (which the owner of this dog knew by the way she reacted when she saw us), please keep your dog on a leash. I really don’t think you will want to pay someone else’s vet bills or ER visit bill because you were irresponsible.

Max was fine but it could have gotten really nasty quickly. And then it would not be fine. Ugh…so annoying.

Thursday

5 mile road run

evening flow yoga

Max and I mixed it up today with a road run. It was mostly because I had a short time frame before work to sneak in some miles. I tried the Peleton app’s 10 minute pre-run warm up for something different than my usual dynamic warm up. It was good except for the neck/back warm up portion. That didn’t seem to sit well with me for the first couple of miles of the run. Things loosened up and I forgot about it. I’ve got a cranky neck from an injury when I was 18 so it should be no surprise that it wouldn’t like it.

My next was still cranky after work so I did a 30 minute evening flow yoga class before bed. Sitting in ‘thread the needle’ for a few minutes did the trick.

Friday

rest day

Saturday

6 mile run with the kids on bikes

After a horrible night of sleeping thanks to the first warm day/night of the year and then going to work early in the morning and my allergies kicking up, I was spent. When I got home from work I took a nap. When I woke up, I felt a little bit better so I asked the kids is they wanted to join me on their bikes for my run. We cruised along, chatted and enjoyed the beautiful sunny afternoon.

Sunday

6.3 mile trail run, 1894 ft elev gain

Reunited and it feels so good!! With things in New Hampshire starting to open up more, Kyle and I felt ready to run together again…while social distancing, of course. I know not everyone is comfortable with things like that or are in an area that isn’t at that level yet. Everyone is different so put the judgement away if that’s where you were going.

Besides being reunited with Kyle, I was also reunited with a mountain run. It was so amazing to get some vert and dirt on a gorgeous blue sky day. It has been way too long. And to catch up with a friend was icing on the cake.

Thankfully, we went early enough to beat the crowds because the trailhead was getting packed just as we finished up. The early bird definitely gets the worm.

How was your week in workouts?

Linking up with the Weekly Run Down.