Geeky Happiness

I once had Garmin Forerunner 305…….

garmin forerunner 305

Notice the scratches on it. It was well loved and used.  It’s battery lasted long enough to finish a marathon. It had a heart rate monitor that came with it. I loved it.

Then it died…………….

garmin

. Notice the black tape, call it life support.

So then, in a panic I bought this guy just before a race

Nike

 

It’s been a great watch. I’ve enjoyed it but it wasn’t my Garmin. I tried other Garmins (thanks to kind friends who understood the importance of testing watches before sinking a small inheritance in them) but it just never felt right.  In fact, the Nike is still going strong (didn’t come with a heart rate monitor) but it doesn’t have an option to lap if I want lap outside of the preset lap. You either automatically lap or you have to lap it yourself. Very annoying. I just missed my watch.

Then I decided to check out Ebay…………….and guess what…………….I got this…………..

Garmin Forerunner 305

I scored it for a sweet deal ($29 plus shipping)!!! I’m so pumped. It looks great, it connects fast and I get to use my heart rate monitor with it!!

My geeky heart is happy!!

 

 

Life Support For My Garmin Forerunner 305

Have you seen my Garmin ForeRunner 305 lately?

garminIt’s currently on life support. It looks rough. Over the last couple of months (starting in April I think) I would look down and it would just be off. It was on, then off. And if I tried switching screens, it would turn off. It’s bad enough that when I charge it it Have to wrap a small, tiny bungee cord around it and the adapter to get a charge but just turning off is not cool!  

So putting my mad Googling skills to work I found this ……….

So your Garmin randomly turns off? Tutorial on how to fix it!

photo credit: TC Runner-BEN

photo credit: TC Runner-BEN

Photo Credit: TC-RUNNER, BEN

Photo Credit: TC-RUNNER, BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC RUNNER-BEN

Photo Credit: TC-RUNNER, BEN

Photo Credit: TC-RUNNER, BEN

 

I did it. I took my Garmin apart just like the instructions said. I dismantled my favorite toy and put it back together. Talk about scared to death!!  I was petrified that I would totally kill it and be forced to mow yards or pick up pine cones to buy a new one!

However at this time, it’s still holding together AND working!  I’ve gone on three runs and it hasn’t turned off except for me turning it off on purpose. I’ve kept a strip of tape on it just because it makes me feel better!

So if your Garmin keeps turning off randomly maybe you should try this!

Meanwhile keep your fingers cross I don’t have to buy one any time soon!!

 

Daily Tools

For the last 5 months I’ve had to be very diligent and mindful of what I eat, how much, and what I do in order to have a successful 6 month deadline. So what am I using? Well,

BodyMedia

I’ve posted about it before (click here). It’s been one of THE most important things I’ve owned. I know exactly how many calories I’ve burned or not  each day. It’s taught me that on off days I typically burn about 2323 calories and to meet my daily goal (2785) I need to walk/run 3 miles.  It’s helping me become mindful of my lifestyle and holding me accountable. You can purchase them here

MyFitnessPal

The website MyFitnessPal.com has been huge for me. I’ve tried just using a notebook but in all honestly this has been the best way for me. Since I always have my phone with me  it’s an app I can keep on my phone (much easier than a notebook). It’s free (yay free) and it has a scanner so all I have to do is scan. Bam. No excuses!

Scale

I love my food scale. It’s like the BodyMedia. I can see how much I’m eating. I know what 56 grams of lunchmeat looks like. I know what 32 grams of peanut butter looks like. Including pretzels, almonds, steak.

Tip:
If you weigh the same items enough, eventually you know that two handfuls of tiny pretzels is a serving size. The repetition is a teaching tool within itself. It’s building a good habit! 

GARMIN FORERUNNER 305/  CONNECT.GARMIN.COM

This is something I’ve owned for several years now. I’m constantly learning what it can do for me besides measure my mileage. I can load a workout into it and it tells me exactly what I should be doing and how fast. The corresponding website for it is PHENOMENAL   It recently went through a little updating and now they have FREE training plans to use with the Garmin (yay free).  I also can keep with my PR’s and other details that I deem important.   

So there you have 4 tools that I use day in and day out. Yes I still have to do the work but having some help never hurt anyone.

What helps you stay successful? I’d love to hear from you.

8 Mile Run

What a great day!!  I ran 8 miles. It was foggy, foggy, foggy!

My view this morning

I had a plan. It was a run/walk. I had my timer set and I had my heart rate monitor going. All my lessons that I learned from my running coach I applied today, thus leading me to successful run!  I guess you could say I set myself up for success.

blurry but you get the point!

I also stuck to my diet today. Counted my calories and drank my water like it was my job!

I’ve been having chocolate cravings so I decided to make some extremely yummy low calorie muffins.

It doesn’t look like much but it was yummy!

Recipe as follows:
Ingredients:
1 Box devils food cake mix (I used Betty Crocker Super Moist Devil’s Food Cake Mix)
One 15 ounce can puree pumpkin
Directions:
Preheat  oven to 400 degrees

Mix the two ingredients together. Don’t add anything else…..no matter what. Only two ingredients are needed. put batter in 12 cup muffin pan (lined or sprayed with nonstick spray). Place pan in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
(got from Hungry Girl Recipes)

My goal this upcoming week is to not get on the scale till Friday morning.  I’m a little addicted to getting on the scale which can’t be good.  Friday is weigh in day and the only day I’m going to get on it.

160 days and counting down.

Run For The Roses 5k=Good Times!!

 

It’s not often I just really pat myself on the back but man, after this weekend I am so proud of myself!! I don’t mean it in a braggy way but rather in a “I really needed that and thank you Jesus for letting me have it!”

It was a great race as always. It’s a small town but the whole town really participates and gets into it and that’s not something you can just make up. It’s a well monitored course with water at two different locations and very well marked.  It’s a first class race.  Registration is made easy and friendly and the refreshments at the end is very well stocked.  All the things you expect at race, it’s here.

As for myself,  Folks, I finished with a pace of 10:37 per minute mile!! I know this is not Boston material but realistically it’s my best 5k time in a LONG time.  It’s a huge plus mark in progress. It’s given me faith that I can still semi race.  I finished 7th in my age group and I belive there was 9 of us all together. 3rd place in my age group was 28:32 so that tells me for the most part I still have lot of work to do.

So what did I do differently than I’ve been doing?

1. I went there with the mindset that I NEEDED to go all out. I needed to know what I could really do.

2. I haven’t “raced” in a while. And if I have I was scared of a high heart rate so this time I changed my Garmin to where  all I saw was distance, average pace, and overall time.  So I didn’t care that I felt like I was one breath away from meeting my maker I didn’t want an 11 minute mile on that watch! Also, with my Garmin in regards to miles and knowing the course really helped. The course is relatively flat with several turns and then two tiny hills at mile 2.5 and 3 mile marker. It helped knowing that at the 2.75 mile  marker if you didn’t know there was a incline coming then a person could easily take off  and run out of gas way too soon.

With a good race in hand and  a huge smile on my face ( I think I’m still on a runners high to be honest, actually it was good fuel for the fire) I went home to get a celebratory smoothie to replenish my glycogen storage.  Then I went for a 14 mile bike ride and Sunday I met up with some friends for “recovery run.” Today (Monday) I’m feeling pretty good.  Legs feel good. I think taking in nutrients as soon as I did and staying active like I did really helped with a quick recovery. I’m really looking forward to my runs this week with another race this coming weekend. I’ve got my fingers crossed because the course is predominately flat and is an out and back course.  Then, on the 28th I’m going to do a Duathlon.  So excited!!

If your interested in a really great article on recovery nutrition, this is one I particularly like………

The Runner’s Ultimate Nutritional Recovery Routine (RUNRR) You’ll be amazed at how good you feel the next day

 

 

 

 

 

Death of the Garmin

My beloved Garmin Forerunner 305 has given me good scare this morning  I’m not sure if it’s a malfunction on it’s part or if it was in pure shock from me getting up and running before work.   Either way very dramatic times before work this morning.  Funny story, when I went to the NWM the night before the race I couldn’t find my Garmin. For 5 minutes I was convinced that I had left it at home. My mother in law was with me and was witnessing my freaking out and kept asking what she could do to help. I finally told her that if I couldn’t find it we were going to go somewhere in the city that would have them and get one. End of story. She didn’t know what a Garmin was but she was like if you’ll calm down I’ll personally buy it!  Fortunately it was in my shoe the whole time!  So as you can see I’m almost helpless without my Garmin.

Dear BB,  (oh yeah, I nickname mine)

This morning we had a great run.  Run after run you prove to be one of the best investments ever. In fact, I probably spend more time with you than I do any one else.  Please don’t scare me like that again.  I will take better care of you.

With warmest regards, your fan and owner,

Brandy

 

Baking A Cake!

My new outlook on running is “I’m baking a cake.”  So if you’ve been keeping up with me (and if you have thank you because I need it more than you know) in one week I’ve spoke to a running coach, ditched a marathon and got myself a running coach plus showered and gone to work for 40 hours. Busy week!  This past week he has encouraged me to run by keeping in a certain heart rate zone.  To keep up with me he logs into Garmin Connect (Thank you Garmin!) to see exactly what I’ve been up to.  Two days already I’ve gotten an email saying “SLOW DOWN!”  He finally broke it down for me like this, “An old joke is that “speed work is the icing on the cake and you don’t have any cake.”  So…….hence my new outlook on running for now, “I’m baking a cake.”  There was a suggestion I get a T-shirt to say, “I’m running for the icing.”  I kind of like it!

The weather was really humid but it wasn’t miserably hot today, it could have been worse.  I had my pre-run breakfast of 2 pieces of toast and tablespoon of peanut butter.  I use to not be able to eat before running but now if I don’t I get a real bonky feeling in the middle of my run.  Kind of light headed and I have a hard time thinking straight.  Breakfast really is the most important part of the day! With all that said this cake maker went to the Trace this morning to see what 8 miles would feel like going by the new training plan. I’m not a HUGE fan of running the Trace because I get so bored.  I’m a fan of the dodging traffic but being on the Trace is definitely a safer easier way to go. I don’t have to worry about a too short of a route or too long of a route. It’s an out and back.  Not too much math there. Sunday mornings tend to be real quiet on the Trace. Unless you’re running with someone the animals are the only life for the most part.  There’s a few bikers out but it was coming back before we ever saw anyone.  Another plus is the Trace has a bathroom and a water fountain roughly every 3 miles.  Thank goodness!  Otherwise someone just might see my shiny, white hiney going to the bathroom.  Trust me it would be my luck to have that embarrassing moment and it would be my luck that it would be someone I know to find me! As far as I know the trip was more or less uneventful. Just another great run. I stayed within the heart rate range!  In fact, I walked away wanting more and really wanting to do more. Patience, it’s a virtue I’m learning.  I ran a very slow easy pace that allowed me to not have to stop (except for the indoor potty break ) or feel defeated.  As Charlie Sheen would say, “Winning!”

Graffiti on the Trace that I just love to see

After running was done I found out a very close friend of ours was preaching close by so we quickly got ready so that we could listen to him.  It was good for my soul.  In fact this whole week has been good for my soul.  I would say a blessing really. I guess when the weight of the extra marathon  and the burden of planning a training schedule was lifted off my shoulders I gained a whole new attitude. You know what they say, it’s all in the attitude!

Oh so since I have some free time, I’ve gone through pictures, music, laundry,etc. and I finally did the before and after pictures of our little addition.  We love it!  The hot tub was not in the plans but definitely a nice addition as well.  All I need is an outdoor kitchen and I may never go inside again.

I hope everyone has a great week. I know I will!

I believe!

So tonight I just had the best run ever!  Okay, maybe not ever but at least in the last year.  I ran 3 miles in 39 minutes while running 4 minutes and walking 2. What made all the difference?  Heart rate!  That’s right I put my heart rate monitor strap on that I’ve had for 2 years now and maybe wore twice before today.  So my new training plan is requiring I include this in my training package and I’m completely hooked on it.

I’ve spent months trying to come back from not being able to run for 6 months.  I finally decided on a run walk ratio and found that 2:1 worked for me (or at least I thought).  I also constructed my own training plan as well with this 2:1 in mind.  Well I know it all sounds fine and dandy but every run I’ve been on since December I’ve questioned myself.  Am I running fast enough, am I running to slow, am I running long enough, etc. You get the picture.  Well finally I had enough of the self doubt and asked for help.  In my 12 years of running I’ve never had any formal training regarding my running so this was HUGE for me.   I had my first run with Mr. Running Coach this morning and I was so nervous!  I had no idea what to expect or what he would think of my running condition or even me for that matter.  Thank goodness he’s a genuinely nice guy who is passionate about the sport.   Also thank goodness he’s talktive in the mornings because I am not. We only did 2 miles this morning, mostly so he could get a feel of what I’m like when I run (I guess). Either way I wore my heart rate monitor for the run and was able to forward my stats to him via Garmin Connect.  Very cool stuff.

Trace Run-First time to use heart rate monitor

 It’s amazing how much info that little watch gathers.  It’s my new best friend. In fact I have two things I pray never break down. My Garmin watch and Google Gmail.  Both would extremely detrimental if they did!!

Anyways so later on today he sent me an email with everything I needed to know for the next couple days and he also told me to keep my heart rate around a certain point .  Well, It was much lower than I thought it should be. Like really slow. Talk about disheartening when I saw that. However, if he thinks it then it must be for the better good and I’ll try anything at least once.  I really think he could tell me to stand on my head and I would (funny thing is that’s what I use to do as a kid to get attention, stand on my head!).  Curosity had the best of me so after I got home and the sun went down I got dressed, laced up the shoes and tied on the heart rate monitor for a 3 mile workout.  It went amazing!  I’m completely sold on the heart rate training.

Ran with heart rate monitor with new run walk ratio. Very pleased.

I can’t wait to see what the next 9 weeks of my training brings.  I know I’m probably a little too over excited about all of this but for so long now all my workouts have been just mediocore and I’ve just been going through the motions.  The change is good.  I can’t wait to share more with you guys.

This is going to be  so exciting!