Will run a PDR for smoothies..

If you've ever needed a reason to run I've got one for ya! Enter the Starbucks Vivanno smoothie, otherwise known as my incentive to get through the last few k's of most of my long runs. I decided as I progressed through training that a nice, cold treat at the end of a particularly tough run would serve as both a motivation and a reward for a job well done. And because I always like to kill 2 birds with one stone (I don't actually like to kill birds at all I swear...who made up that saying anyway??) the smoothies have a good dose of whey protein which comes in handy when my muscles are screaming. Score!

This morning I left with the goal to complete the required 18k that I had settled on for this stage in my training. I have never actually run 18k before so I wasn't sure what to expect but I figured it'd be tough and was prepared to grin and bear it.

My first attempt was short-lived and I was back in the apartment less than 2 minutes after I left. Why you ask? Dead iPod. And there was no freakin' way I was attempting a tech-free run when I had this distance to cover. So after a few minutes of locating my backup iPod shuffle (and making sure it was charged for another 15 minutes) I was out the door and on way way downtown.

If I haven't mentioned it before my favorite route to run is south on Yonge street. If you are familiar with Toronto you will know this is a very busy street for pedestrian traffic and many people can't understand why I want my runs to turn into a game of Frogger but I just love it. There is so much to see and be distracted by, a good part of it is on a steady decline (go ahead, call me a cheater. I like to think of myself as efficient!) and there is water available at the hot dog carts! You really can't go wrong.

It was warm in the city so I stuck to the shady side of the street. As per the norm I went through phases of loving and hating running, although thankfully I leaned more towards really liking it for a good part of the run. As I neared the 12k mark I was seriously starting to feel it in my legs (and my ankles, and my feet and my....) but I just continued to give myself pep talks that I was "doing really well" and that this "is important to get ready for my 1/2 in a few weeks" and that I am "stronger then I ever realized". And all the positive thinking really helped me through. Other then my typical "I hate socks" thoughts I was really determined to keep my mind in a good place as additional practice for race day.

Side note: If you are wondering about "I hate socks" I will explain. Every time I run when its sunny I think that thought at least 3 times during a run. In truth I really don't hate socks although I would prefer not to wear them if I can. So wearing them when I am warm and sweaty and tired just makes me irritated. And I think about it...ALOT.

By the time I had pounded out the obligatory 18k I was sweaty and tired and absolutely starving but also feeling very upbeat about the 1/2 marathon. If I can channel some good energy on that morning I really believe I am going to be all right!

And of course it helped that I was about to get my smoothie too :)

My Twitter pals may have noticed that I watched Food Inc for the first time last night. I planned to write about it today but I think I am going to give myself another day to digest (pun somewhat intended) the many different ideas and concepts that resonated with me after the film ended. So stay tuned for a little review of what I will say was one of the most disturbing movies I have ever seen (and I watch horror flicks!).

So tell me, are there any treats that you reward yourself with after a tough workout?



  1. Congrats on a PDR! I grin all day after a run like that. It's a great feeling.

    For some reason, I still crave oats after a sweaty run. Even when I'm super hot and gross, I love my hearty bowl of carbs!

  2. My post workout smoothies always motivate myself to get my butt in the gym :) They're soooo good after getting all sweaty.

    Sounds like an awesome run! Once you got over the dead ipod thing and all, anyway :P I'm the same way- I need music and have a lil mini freakout if I have to go without it. It ends up being fine, but it's still not cool.

  3. I tried a Mango orange??? smoothie yesterday after my Underwear Affair down at The Beach. I was meh on it. Not sure if it was the flavour or not, so I will give the other 2 flavours a try before making up my mind on them.

    I totally pictured you being froggere running down Young street. This is going to be good for you in the race though. If you can manage to get yourself in a position in the race where you aren't dodging around people you will have so much more energy and stamina during your run, it might actually seem like an easier run, and you will have more gusto left for the end to sprint it out.

    Congrats on the 18k.

  4. Rewarding yourself after a long run is a great idea. I may have to start doing this.

  5. good job on ur run.
    ive only ran down Yonge street one time, and that was during my first half marathon (Toronto Marathon) and really liked it.

    ive had the starbucks smoothies and yes they are delicious!! great for a post run recovery fuel!

  6. Hehehe I laughed at your 'I hate socks' comment. I can't say I've ever thought about my socks on a run, but today I set out for my run and my hair elastic broke about 20 mins in. :( Not fun when you have hair that is growing to be out-of-control long! I kept going though and it didn't bother me as much as I thought it would.
    Starbucks smoothies are soooo yum - that's a perfect post-workout treat! I like to make giant Green Monsters, or pancakes, or some sort of big, fruit-laden breakfast. Rather than thinking about socks, these thoughts are what usually float through my head when I'm running!

  7. Can't wait to hear what you have to say about Food, Inc. I thought it was eye opening. Congrats on getting through the 18k!

  8. I haven't seen Food Inc and part of me is scared to. I do want to make changes and the best choices possible for my foods, but at the same time I'm worried I would end up feeling guilty for some of the things I do eat after watching it. And that is not cool with me. I'm interested to hear your thoughts.

    That smoothie looks like great post workout fuel.

  9. I used to walk up that segment of Yonge to and from work and I agree - it's impossible to get bored there! I saw the strangest things...an old man in neon spandex, a guy in a penis suit on a bicycle...

    That said, the "frogger" thing drove me mad while walking (I walk fast) and would make me stabby running.

    We've moved to a different part of Toronto and I do my long runs up and down Eglinton and St. Clair and it works out quite well!

    Toronto rocks for running...I love this city.

  10. Congrats on your run!! :) Setting a PDR is super exciting...and that smoothie was well deserved :)

    A similar thing happened to me before my long run on Sunday. I put on my iPod, only to find out that one of the earbuds was broken and music was only playing out of one ear. I knew that would drive me crazy, and like you, I had no desire to run for hours with no music. So I delayed my run by going out to the store to get a new pair. Maybe a little obsessive, but totally worth it. :)

    I'm interested to hear what you thought of Food, Inc. Obviously I love reading/talking about stuff like that!

  11. i've been drinking bird nest soup every night (i only get the homemade kind back at home). the only reason why i drink it is because it's supposed to be good for complexion.

    i’ve been taking the store-bought kind online (e.g. www.geocities.jp/hongkong_bird_nest/index_e.htm of famous branded only of course) which is directly mailed from Hong Kong. this would be at a more affordable price.