Let's get real.
For me, rest days are still tough. Yes, I know how important it is to take a break from working out, especially at the level that I do; without giving my body proper rest, I am more prone to injuries (re: my history in the ortho doc's office for stress fractures...they know me by name now), burnout, and plateauing.
So, why is it still hard for me to let my body rest?
Let me get you up to speed on my weekend. On Saturday morning, my boyfriend and I slept in, made banana pancakes, and lounged around the apartment. To say that it was wonderful is an understatement. I didn't set an alarm (I know, crazy challenging to my OCD) so that I could gage when my body was actually ready to wake up. I woke up a bit earlier than he did, so I ran (read: walked) to the store to pick up some bananas and whipped up some of my "famous" paleo-banana pancakes using coconut oil, eggs, bananas, and cinnamon, and topped them with walnuts.
Around 1:00 pm, we started to make our way down to the ferry, where we walked around a bit and enjoyed the Seaport District. It was actually such a treat to take the ferry over to DUMBO instead of taking a subway- especially on such a beautiful day!
We spent the afternoon in DUMBO wandering around the photography festival. Every photographer or group of photographers had their own storage crate, where they set up all of their work. We saw some pretty incredible, emotional, and raw pieces.
After visiting each unit, we decided to make our way home to cook dinner and relax before meeting up with some family for drinks and ice cream (you better know by now that we went to Van Leeuwen Ice Cream of course haha!). It was an absolutely wonderful day, and I wouldn't change it for anything. But there was something in the back of my mind.
I didn't work out nor did I count calories.
Though there were moments when I was fully present and enjoying myself, I still had this nagging voice in the back of my head: You didn't run today, and you're lazy for that. Why aren't you counting calories? How will you know if you're eating too much?
I knew my body needed rest. I had run a race the weekend before and every day since, and I had started taking my design courses right after a full day of work every day last week. I was going from 5:00 am till 11:00 pm everyday and was down right exhausted, so deep down, I knew that my body was crying for a break. But my mind wouldn't give.
Instead, I spent part of the day feeling guilty for giving my body what it deserved and needed. That in itself is exhausting. Granted, I used to spend a lot more of my day focused on these two things, so the fact that I'm able to now get it down to brief moments is a huge milestone of success. But my body still felt tired, and I believe it's because my mind couldn't relax. I couldn't accept that I'm not considered lazy for taking one day off of exercise. I couldn't accept that I didn't need to count calories, because guess who the best counter is? My own damn body. It will tell me exactly what I need, how much I need, and when I need it if I trust my own system instead of letting my mind take over.
The mind is a powerful entity, but if I tell it to relax, then I can finally let my body do its job in taking care of itself so that ultimately, my mind can function properly. I'm sure we all can relate to this when I say that my mind loves control and thinks that it knows everything. Well, it doesn't. In fact, the more it thinks it knows and the more it tries to control everything, the more my body and soul become prone to messing up.
Do I wish that I could have shut my mind up on Saturday and let myself enjoy my rest day, sans worries about calories and laziness? Absolutely. But, am I mad at myself for not being worry-free? Of course not. This is an ongoing process of growth, one in which I am seeing improvements in myself everyday. This upcoming week, when I take my rest day, I am aiming to not worry about the calories or whether or not I am lazy for resting because the true Britt knows that I am not. I always strive to be kind to everyone, but the one person I really need to be kind to is myself. I need to be gentler to myself.
So today, take care of you. Be kind to you. Because we all deserve our own kindness.
Happy Monday, everyone :)
Hey, kids. What's up?
How's everyone doing this Wednesday morning? Just finished up a short speed-workout on the treadmill, and now I'm munching on some apple slices topped with cinnamon :) It's almost fall, right?! (i.e. IT'S TOMORROW!! WOO!)
To kick off this lovely, crisp season, I decided to try out another one of Shalane and Elyse's wonderful and nutritious recipes from their new cookbook, Run Fast. Eat Slow: Sweet Potato Breakfast Cookies!!
Once again, I was not disappointed!! These breakfast cookies contain some of the most basic ingredients, yet are somehow so. freaking. good. It's like the season of fall all baked into one delicious, chewy, soft, and sweet treat!
The main ingredient? You guessed it. SWEET POTATO! These little super spuds are chock full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory goodness. Also filled with loads of beta-carotene (that lovely Vitamin A and orange hue), sweet potatoes are great at regulating blood sugar, so despite their semi-sweet disposition (and their nomenclature), you won't feel a crash after noshing on one!
Thanks again, Shalane and Elyse! You guys rock!
The other day, I was perusing The Iron You, Mike's blog, and came across his latest recipe for Lentil Bolognese! I was inspired, so I decided to adapt it for myself!
Lentils are another excellent food for runners (and our non-meat-eating friends!), as they provide a great source of calcium, zinc, potassium, and Vitamin K! A.K.A. you need these little guys for bone strength! Goodbye, stress fractures :) Check out my recipe adaptation!
Adapted from The Iron You
I'm still feeling hyped from the race yesterday. Man, was it so much fun!
On Sunday morning, 7:00 am, I ran the RUN10FEED10 10k sponsored by Women's Health Magazine. It was absolutely incredible. The inspiration behind the name is simple: run a 10k, feed 10 families within the local area. How cool is that?! That way, you get to impact not only a national foundation, but help your local community. And I was certainly feeling the community love yesterday. Here are some pics from the race :)
Taken at 6 am...the moon is still out... I got up at 5:00 am, got my gear together, and was out the door by 5:30 am. I arrived to Pier 84 just before 6:00 am, and there were already people ready to check in and warm up. It was crazy!
Ready to go :)
"Can I get a picture of you?" "I haven't had coffee, but sure..."
The count down begins. Above, the Editors of Women's Health Magazine. At this point, I was feeling the nerves. I hadn't run a race since God knows when, so at this point I was just trying to tell myself, it's just a run. You're just doing it with 999 people. (Actually, I think the total count was 1,020. Yep. That's a lot of peeps).
Run, Forest, RUN!!! Clocking in at officially a 44:52 time, 7:14 min/mile pace :)
Look, Ma, I did it!!
Overall, it was an incredible race, and I feel so lucky and grateful to have run it. It was filled with tons of inspirational and wonderful people. I would 100% do it again next year, but right now, I want to focus on another half marathon! Any suggestions for those?!
Have a lovely day :) If any of you have run the RUN10FEED10 in another city, how was it?!
It's finally that time of year.
Yes, that's right. It's PUMPKIN SEASON!
Now, I'm not one to be mistaken for a PSL lover (for those of you who are, my apologies), but I do enjoy my fair share of pumpkin treats during this lovely fall season :) I'm a big fan of pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, pumpkin soup, butternut squash soup, toasted seeds, pumpkin smoothies (yes, that's a thing, and I cannot wait to share my recipe with you!)...the list goes on!
So you can imagine that I was VERY excited to find my favorite bar, RxBar, came out with a seasonal Pumpkin Spice flavor!
Oh. Em. Gee.
I can't believe I'm saying this, but this may even beat out my all-time favorite flavor, dark chocolate sea salt. The Pumpkin Spice bar instantly reminds me of fall- just by the smell of it! It also tastes like you're biting into pumpkin pie, so how could you not like it?!
I may or may not be ordering several boxes...whoops. Not sorry bout it.
In other news, this morning was a quick treadmill run, followed by a BBG Week 6 workout! This was my last run before my race on Sunday- I'm so excited!! So ready for the weekend- bring it on :)
Have a wonderful Friday!
Hello Beautiful People!!
It's Hump Day, and I'm powering through this week.
On Monday, I celebrated my birthday with family, friends, and coworkers, and it was absolutely wonderful! After starting off the day with a nice 5-mile run and lift session, I walked into work and was greeted by a big announcement on the lobby screen that said it was my birthday! Everyone stopped by my desk all day to wish me a happy birthday :) It was so sweet!
After work, my boyfriend and I went out to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants, Spring Natural Kitchen (formerly Spring Street Natural!)! If you want a good meal and a lot of it, then go hear, because this place knows how to make healthy, delicious food and does NOT skimp on servings!! I had the hardest time choosing what to eat because there are so many good options, you can't go wrong! To start we shared the special Spinach salad and the rainbow quinoa bowl.
I then got the seaweed rice bowl under the vegan section, but I really had a craving for meat, so they topped mine with some grilled chicken :)
Grilled chicken, spinach, black beans, steamed cauliflower and broccoli, and brown rice drizzled in a tofu asian sauce- YUM! Of course, dinner was followed by my absolute favorite: Van Leewuen Ice Cream!!
Yes, I had it two nights in a row. NOT SORRY BOUT IT! After dinner and ice cream, we met up with my friends for drinks and even MORE dessert! My friends surprised me with Gluten-Free Baked by Melissa Cupcakes and BabyCakes cookies!! Dessert round-two was a go, and I was alllllll about it! Of course, they were devoured before I remembered to take a picture :( But just know that they were AMAZING!
Thank you to all who wished me a happy birthday! This was one of my favorite birthdays yet, and I'm so grateful and lucky for everyone in my life. You guys rock :)
Before I go, here's a new recipe!! It's my Superfood Overnight Oats Bowl! Made with cinnamon, turmeric, chia seeds, and maca powder, this bowl is just what I need to refuel after a long run and get me through my day :) It's also so simple- prep the night before and simply stir in the morning and enjoy! Check it out below!
Superfood Overnight Oats
Happy Wednesday, everyone!! Until next time!
Who's birthday is today?!
Hey there and welcome! I'm a 20-something-year-old running, painting, and eating my way through NYC. Hope to see you along the way!