Week 11/52 of Training – 2015

Not a very good week of training in terms of days run. Yeah I know…I need to be more consistent with my mileage. I asked a question in the reddit running forum about qualifying for Boston (one day) and basically everyone was like you need to RUN MORE ASAP. I mean, it’s no surprise. My running coach has been telling me the same thing. I know what I need to do it’s just a matter of doing it. Questions for you runners:

  1. How do you balance running with strength training (for those of you who run almost every day)? I just do not feel like lifting after running but obviously need to.
  2. What’s your best tip to motivate yourself on days you really don’t feel like running?
  3. Have you ever gone through a running rut where you’re just blah about running?

Even though I’ve been kinda blah, last night I found this blog, Miles To The Trials, and was reading about her story. She went from a 4:07 marathon to qualifying for the Olympic Trials! That really motivated me and I told myself I can qualify for Boston one day, it’s just a matter of dedication and hard work. And I need to buck up and do the work. 

Anyway, here was last weeks training:

Monday: First longer outdoor run! 6 miles at 10:00 pace. Felt okay, shins kinda hurt after but I figure it was because it was my first longer run outside. My body was EXHAUSTED the day after, no joke, I felt so fatigued. Anyone have this issue when transitioning from treadmill to outdoors?

Tuesday: Off because of the fatigue issue mentioned above.

Wednesday: Track workout…finally outside as opposed to the treadmill! 1 mile warm up then 6×400 meters at 1:50 per lap. Doubted myself because I figure it’s a bit easier on the treadmill to keep a certain pace…but actually could do it! Challenging but fastest I’ve ever done a 400 meter workout :)


A photo posted by pattyrivas13 (@pattyrivas13) on

Thursday: Off because shins were really sore from the track.

Friday: Off because I’m lazy. I know.

Saturday: St. Patty’s Day 5K. 28:45ish (there was no start timing mat so I crossed a bit after the gun went off). Felt really good throughout the race minus one huge, long hill in the middle. I’ll take it for not having been running much but I really do want to get a 5K PR this spring! Current PR is 25:13. After the race we all went out for St. Patrick’s day since it was the parade, festivities in the town. Running a morning race + day drinking = being in bed that night at like 9 pm haha.


A photo posted by pattyrivas13 (@pattyrivas13) on

Sunday: Off.

Going to go for more miles this week. I know I need to be more consistent…I don’t know what’s wrong with me lately in terms of motivation. Help!

Do you get super tired from running outside after being on the treadmill for a while?

Motivation tips please!


Follow Reach Your Peak:


How To Motivate Yourself To Workout

I’ve seen many posts about gym resolutioners and people who are starting to work on being healthier and fitter…awesome! I’ve also seen a lot of posts in the past about finding a workout buddy in order to hold yourself accountable and get workouts done. But what if you don’t have one? You may want to take spin or run regularly, yet none of your friends are interested. That’s where these tips on how to motivate yourself to workout come in.

As awesome as it is for me to regularly work out with my mom, there are many days where our schedules don’t coincide, so I need to either run or lift alone. And some days I am severely lacking in motivation to go to the gym or run alone. Here are a few things that have helped me:

5 Ways To Motivate Yourself To Workout

Just go for 20 minutes. On days where I REALLY don’t want to workout, I tell myself I’ll do it for 20 minutes. Whether it’s a 20 minute video, 20 minutes at the gym, or a 20 minute run. Recently I did a 25 minute video, and once it was over I was feeling good so I drove to the gym to continue my workout. I bet you, 9 times out of 10, once those 20 minutes are up, you’ll want to keep working out. 

Text a friend. When my mom and I can’t workout or run together, we always Snapchat each other. Yes, Snapchat :-P I’ll send her a photo of my treadmill readout when I’m done and she’ll do the same. There have been plenty of times where I’ve gone or she’s gone and the other person says “Yeah I’ll probably skip today,” but then ends up going to the gym once we see the other person is there. Enlist a friend to be the one who encourages you and provides you with support when you need it. Just the act of sending “proof” to someone can motivate you to get yourself to the gym.

Instagram. So this actually happened last night…before bed I’m using the “explore” feature on Instagram to find new people to follow and ended up finding a few. I started scrolling through their pictures, and learning about their story, their results, their daily nutrition, etc. I was feeling super motivated to get my workout in today (was even going to wake up at 6:30 to do it but we all know I’m not a morning person), and even had all these dreams about going to the gym. Maybe it’s just me, but seeing other people’s results and hard work on Instagram are a huge motivator. Whether it’s their results from following a specific workout plan, or their journey to a BQ…I love seeing pictures and using that to fuel my own fire. Some hashtags I regularly go through are #fitfluential #runnersofinstagram #sweatpink and #runchat.

Try a new class. When I’m feeling really blah and lazy, I check out the group exercise schedule at my gym and pick a new one to try. That’s actually how I found BodyPump (and ended up loving it). You don’t have to do any of the (mental) work, like putting together a plan, picking out weights, etc. Just go to the class and follow instructions. And you might just find your new favorite class!

Take before pictures. Nothing motivates me more than wanting to have “after” pictures. Take before pictures and when you start forgetting about your goals, go through the pictures. I’m not saying to be self-deprecating here and hate on your body…but we all have things we may want to work on. For example, for me, I want stronger and more defined arms and abs. Seeing before pictures is a reminder of it. You can’t get what you want without putting in the work. If you’re a runner, then do a time trial test. Run a mile or a 5K and use that as your benchmark. You’ll want to improve in X amount of weeks and break that time.

Right now, my goals are simply to start lifting again and get back some strength. I always end up losing it once I start training for a half marathon or marathon…this will be the year I stop doing that! I found a workout plan I want to follow…and once I get into the regimen and do it for a few weeks, I’ll share what it is, my thoughts and any possible results. 

How do you self-motivate? Is it easy for you to workout alone or do you have a workout/running buddy?


Follow Reach Your Peak:


You Never Know Who You Are Inspiring

I wanted to first say thank you to everyone who commented on my post yesterday – your words of encouragement made me feel so much better about my race. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, that is why I love the running/fitness community. Despite not knowing many of you personally, we support each other and understand the ups and downs of running, as well as health and fitness in general. 

I may have not been happy with the overall result of the race, but I am thankful that I am able to run, and that I can do it with my mom. PRs will come. We just have to be patient.

A conversation that “opened my eyes” happened yesterday. It relates to this quote:

"You Never Know Who You Are Inspiring."

I had mentioned my mom’s friend ran her first half marathon with us. Although we didn’t train together, she would always call my mom asking for help or advice. Yesterday she called my mom to say thank you. She thanked her and myself for inspiring her to do her first half marathon. She said that if it weren’t for us, she would have never even thought to do one. She had so much fun running it that she plans on running more halfs and a fall marathon with us next year!

She thanked us for answering her countless questions as a beginner runner, and for motivating her and encouraging her throughout. And this is what really touched me. 

Sometimes we get so caught up in personal results and how we feel, that we may not realize how we have inspired others. I’m not the world’s best runner, far from it, and I just never would have thought I would inspire someone to run their first marathon. Her call reminded me that it doesn’t matter what “level” you’re at. 

Don’t get down on yourself because you feel “slow” compared to others, or didn’t get that PR. Trust me, I know how hard that is ;) But by just being active, you are probably motivating others to do the same…and you don’t even know it! So just keep doing it, and help those who are just starting out in their journey. This will be especially true in January when the “resolutioners” join your gym. Offer advice if someone needs it…it doesn’t matter if you run a 15 minute 5K or a 30 minute 5K…they’ll be grateful for your help.

Have you ever had someone tell you that you inspired them or motivated them to start running/any activity?


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Random Fitness Tips

Happy Friday! Today I just wanted to share 2 fitness tips that have popped into my head in the past few days. Perhaps it will help you out as well.

Tip Number 1:

running in the winter
If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you know I ran 10 miles on Wednesday and already read this tip. Well, my mom and I needed to run 10 miles, but knew it would be dark out by the time we even started. So we headed to a local college campus (Rutgers) and ran around there. Luckily, Rutgers is big enough that we could run through all the campuses and complete 10 miles. But if you live near a college campus, utilize it! We had no issues with lighting and didn’t have to use our headlamps at all. There should be plenty of well-lit paths, and with students all around you will feel safer than running through unlit streets. Rutgers is about a 30 minute drive for me, but worth it, in my opinion, to be able to run comfortably at night.

Tip Number 2:

Snapchat. (Add me on Snapchat! I’m under pattyrivas13) Now that winter is coming, your motivation may be lacking. Even though my mom and I run together most days, there are some days where we don’t. It’s harder for me to WANT to go run when I’m alone, but in order to check in with each other and motivate the other we send each other “snaps.” Yesterday, she told me she really didn’t want to run our recovery run. So I made sure to snap her while I was running with a funny video, and then she snapped me back later on when she was done running at the gym. Make a deal with a friend to snap each other when you do workout, and that way it will motivate the other. Plus, who doesn’t like getting funny snapchat videos/pictures from friends? :)

How do you stay motivated to continue to run or workout in the winter? Because last winter I did not run at all, and I don’t want to lose fitness this winter!


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Motivational Monday!

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend/Mother’s Day weekend. Mine was very relaxing and I wasn’t ready for this morning, but oh well, time to conquer the week.

I wanted to switch things up with my Motivational Monday posts. I usually post an inspirational quote (because who doesn’t like inspirational quotes), but I want to start adding my weekly goals in terms of workouts and what I want to accomplish. And I’d love for you all to leave comments telling me what workouts you plan on doing this week as well!

Here’s my planned schedule…though we all know sometimes things change ;)

Monday: Chest and back lifting

Tuesday: Speed workout (3 miles)

Wednesday: Off

Thursday: Easy 45 min. run

Friday: Easy 45 min. run

Saturday: Long walk or cross train

Sunday: Long run (60 minutes)

And here’s a great Oprah quote, which I’ve been loving that it’s been on Starbucks cups recently!



Let’s get after it this week!

What’s on tap for you this week? Leave a comment and tell me! :)


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Motivational Monday!

So happy it will be in the mid 70s today! Love that it is finally getting consistently warm. Hopefully it stays that way next week when my mom and I will be in Boston to watch the marathon! Anyone running or will be there too?

Anyway, I found this quote and print on Etsy and love it:

eleanor roosevelt quote

How often do we let other people’s comments and opinions get to us? It actually happened to me a few times this weekend and I had to talk myself out of it. It sucks and it’s hard not to care, but at the end of the day, you’re doing what is best for you, or going after things that you want…no need to have to justify that to anyone!

Have you let someone’s comments get in your head recently? How did you move past it?


Follow Reach Your Peak:


In A Slump

The past week or two I have felt like I’m in a major workout slump. I have not had the desire or drive that I usually do to get to the gym or go out for a run. It’s weird because during my 16 weeks of strength training on a program, I was motivated to hit the gym every day, no excuses.

I don’t know what it is, but I’ve just been lacking motivation. I took a few days off in case my body needed a break or something but it didn’t really help.

However, I still have been trying to remain active. I run a mile or 2, or go for long walks with my mom. I have been loving Blogilates abs videos too! I’ve really just been craving shorter workouts. Yesterday my mom and I did 5 sets of hill sprints.

It’s just weird for me because a few weeks ago I loved going to the gym to try to get some personal records on each lift. I’m trying to figure it out but hopefully motivation comes back soon. Perhaps it is just a case of wanting some time off from long, hard workouts. Or maybe it’s the fact that I have nothing to train for (and my 16 week program ended), so I’ve had no structure.

I’m going to seriously try to get back at it Monday though. For now, I’ll listen to my mind and body and take it easy, but Monday I want to get back to seriously lifting. I don’t want to lose all that strength I built up!

Basically, this post was to ask for your advice and insight.

Has this ever happened to you? How do you get out of a workout slump?


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Motivational Monday!

Can you believe it is now December? Less than a month left in 2013! Wow…

Today’s motivational quote inspired me this weekend. As you know, I launched my own social media consulting business after grad school. I’ve been working part-time while trying to get more clients. It’s been going well, but it’s has had its ups and downs, which is expected. Some days I really feel like giving up on that dream…but then I see things like this and rally:

I’m taking a chance, but it’s a chance I can take right now, as opposed to when I’m older and need more financial security. It’s hard and stressful, but I want to continue to work on this goal and see where it takes me. If it doesn’t work out, then it doesn’t work out-but at least I tried.

What chances have you taken recently? 

If you own a small business, what tips can you give me? ;)


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Motivational Monday!

October is over already…my friend and I were talking about New Year’s dresses the other day…where is time going??? I don’t want it to be 2014!

Anyway, last week, I found this quote on Instagram on a fellow runner’s account (@blonde_bun_runner). I totally could relate:

This can relate to anyone. How often do you get caught up with worrying and stressing out? We don’t even realize how much we worry sometimes. I saw this and immediately related it to my marathon training. I haven’t had the best last 3 weeks of running and I’m really nervous. Then I saw this and thought, I’m running a marathon. I have the ability to RUN, period. I have an able body, and 2 legs that will take me through 26.2 miles (hopefully). Time doesn’t matter. I should be thankful for the opportunity…because there are many people out there who wish they could walk or run. Something I need to remember whenever I start worrying this week…

What are you currently worrying about? How will you change your point of view on this and instead of thankful? Tell me in the comments!


Follow Reach Your Peak:


Motivational Monday!

Happy Monday! Another new week…and less than 2 weeks until the New York City Marathon! =O

I decided to go with this quote today:

Once again, this quote is one I can relate to, especially while marathon training. As you may know, recently I’ve had to take multiple days off due to some shin pain. It has made me nervous, paranoid, and doubting myself. But I love this quote and need to remember it!

I need to “rid my mind of can’t” and think of everything I have accomplished and will accomplish on Nov. 3.

Sometimes it’s so easy for us to get down on ourselves and believe we will not do well enough (in whatever it may be), but if we just change our mindset, we could excel and potentially surprise ourselves….something I should write down on my hand or something on race day!

Have you read any good books on building mental strength? I need tips and help!


Follow Reach Your Peak: