August 04, 2013

Monica's treats

I think I'm out of my funk from the last couple of weeks. I've been feeling much better as far as the anxiety and depression goes; and this morning, I felt absolutely fantastic! I got up at 6:30, dressed, drank a little water, and then headed out for my long run (10 miles). Lately, I've been waiting until late morning to run, but I was hoping that running on an empty stomach would make me feel better as I ran. It worked like a charm.

I've been enjoying sticking closer to home on my runs, so rather than doing a 10-mile out-and-back, or driving somewhere, I decided to do the circumference of all four neighborhoods (5 miles total) twice. It was GORGEOUS outside--57 degrees when I headed out at 6:45! It was sunny, but because it was so early, the sun was still low and there was a ton of shade.

Based on last week's long run, I knew I could hold a sub-9:00 pace and keep my heart rate in the correct zone, so that was my goal today. I thought it would be awesome to have all sub-9:00 miles! I haven't done that during a long run in several months.

As soon as I started running, I knew I was going to have a great run. I felt light on my feet, my step was springy, and I just felt really damn good! During the first loop of the neighborhoods, I didn't see anyone outside at all. It was actually really nice to run in such great weather, and just let my mind wander. My pace felt great, and I didn't feel like I was struggling at all. My heart rate was in the middle of Zone 2, which was perfect.

At mile five, the mid-point, I was back in front of my house. As I continued down the street, I debated whether I wanted to do the same loop again, or to do a five-mile out-and-back. The change of scenery won me over, so I chose the out-and-back. I ran out a mile, turned into a neighborhood (where I came across a couple of other people out exercising). When I hit mile 7.5, I turned around and headed home for the last 2.5 miles.

I changed the screen on my Garmin to see my average pace overall, and it was 8:39. I was shocked! To date, my fastest double-digit outdoor long run was an 8:44/mi pace (with the exception of my half-marathon PR in April). I wanted to keep the average pace in the 8:30's (just because I could!), so I picked it up a little for the last mile.

I was so excited to have had such an amazing run this morning! I laid in the grass, and just felt really happy in that moment.

Apparently, this heart rate training is paying off! The paces that used to feel pretty tough are feeling easier. It's getting harder to get my heart rate up, which means I'm getting more conditioned. Unfortunately, that also makes my calorie burn lower than I would like.

Next week, my long run jumps up to 15 miles! That is a huge leap, but I imagine it's all part of the Hansons' method of running on tired legs. I did 13 a few weeks ago, so I'm sure I'll be able to tough it out. I'm certainly not expecting my pace to be what it was today, though ;)

After I showered and ate breakfast, I had to run to the store. Our local bakery, Monica's Baker Boy, is nearby, so I stopped in there to get a long run treat. I planned to get a chocolate chip cookie, but once Jerry and I got inside, I couldn't decide what I wanted. There were lots of different kinds of cookies, brownies, and doughnuts. I was pretty sure I wanted a chocolate chip cookie, but then the woman working there (who was SO very nice) told me that some of the brownies had cookies baked into them. I was pretty much sold at that point!

Jerry picked out a doughnut, and we were going to pay, when the woman said, "Do you like coconut? I want you to try these cookies. They're chocolate cookies with a macaroon baked inside." Oh, man. Before I could decline, she gave each of us one of those. Then, after we'd paid, she gave me a chocolate chip cookie, too, because I had been so undecided! She was so nice I couldn't say no. So I wound up with all this loot:

I weighed them when I got home to calculate the PointsPlus in each item. The brownie was 20 PP, the chocolate chip cookie was 14 PP, and the small chocolate macaroon cookie was 5 PP. I had to decide what I was going to do with all of this. I ended up eating about 1/4 of the brownie, 1/2 the chocolate chip cookie, and the whole chocolate cookie. It ended up being 16 PP total. I had earned 11 on my run, so it wasn't exactly an even swap, but since I only get a treat like this once a week, I just used my regular snack PP to make up the difference.

I don't think I will ever lust after a Mrs. Fields cookie again--these goodies were spectacular! And because they are from a local bakery, they tasted homemade and fresh. Next time, though, I will make sure that I only leave with ONE treat. ;)

Just a reminder, tomorrow is Motivational Monday! If you have a picture of a health/fitness accomplishment from last week that you want to share, you can email it to me (along with a description) at SlimKatie (at) runsforcookies (dot) com with the subject "Motivational Monday". I may use it on tomorrow's post!


  1. They look delicious!! I have that problem at Subway all the time...they always want to give me extra cookies!

  2.'re so fast!
    Brownies with cookies in them? I need to try and make them!

  3. Nice run! We must be doing the same training, because this week was 10 for me and next week is my 15! Glad to hear you are feeling better!!

  4. I'm amazed at your times -- I hope you realize how good you are....too bad I can't convince myself that the cookies are what make you fast.

  5. Haha Ty, the Subway cookies. My local Subway has free cookie Friday, and I'd go in there with such good intentions. Six inch turkey on wheat with Baked Lays and a Diet Coke. Oh and a free cookie? Okay, eff it, raspberry cheesecake, kthx.

    Great job on your long run. I love those glorious feeling long runs... they are few and far between for me!

  6. I envy your runs so much! You make me feel better only by reading about them! Today I even dreamed about running in the rain to my local library... unfortunately I have a bad back and can't run.
    I will keep on reading about yours. :-)
    How do you calculate the points on the cookies by weighting them?

  7. And you're supporting a local, small business owner instead of a huge chain! Win-Win!

  8. You look *really* happy in the grass photo. :)

  9. I am sure you told us already but can you explain how you calculate the points + by weighing the treat?


    1. Not sure if you'll come back to see this, so I'll try to remember to write it in tomorrow's post. But I just look up "chocolate chip cookie" (or whatever the item is) on my Weight Watchers database in e-Tools. Then, I change the serving size from the default serving to the number of grams MY cookie weighs. It gives me the number of PointsPlus for that size cookie. It's not 100% accurate, since everyone makes cookies differently, but it's close enough, considering I only eat stuff like this once a week. Does that make sense? :)

  10. Just got out to the gym to run 6 miles after psyching myself into it reading your blog posts!


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