Just Do Hard Things and Recovery Cross Training



I got on the treadmill for a few miles this morning. Did a little browsing while I was on there.

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A total of six easy miles at an 8:28 pace.

I taught a boot camp class and then took advantage of a little quiet time on the trails afterwards.

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I decided I really want to try to run the trails more often Not only do my Wave Kazan shoes need a little more attention, but there’s just something so therapeutic about being out there by yourself.

I ran up this hill twice today.

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I have a quick little story about this hill.

I used to run it when I was a PE teacher and we had a little running group with the students afterschool. It was so hard for me to run back then. It would kick my butt every time.

Now, it’s really not that bad. I mean, hills are never fun, but really, they aren’t that bad. The more you tackle them and push onward and upward, the easier they get.

And that, my friends, brings me to my deep thought for the day.

Make yourself do hard things.

Don’t take the easy route all the time. Life is going to hand us all hard situations at one point or another, so we’re going to have to face them whether we want to or not. We are strong enough to take them on. We are also strong enough to take on our dreams or whatever challenges we need to become our best self and see what’s really out there.


Let’s all just go out there and tackle something that’s darn hard this month.


At some point in the future we can look back and think, “Hey that wasn’t that bad and I’m so glad I decided to do it,”

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Whoops. Didn’t mean to get that deep, but I had some good thinking time out there today.


In other news I made my first Groupon purchase ever yesterday. I even did it from my phone.

It was this deal for PB2.


I’ve been loving Just Great Stuff powdered peanut butter lately, but I couldn’t pass up a good deal and I feel like it’s my job to pass it along to you.

You’re welcome.


I got a really great package in the mail from Arctic Zero yesterday.

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I’m pretty excited about these.


Yesterday afternoon my snack was this.

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A baked chocolate chip cookie dough Quest Bar topped wit SunButter. It was just as delicious as it looks.


So let’s talk recovery cross training.

The whole cross training while marathon training topic is coming, but since it’s a recovery week over here I thought I should talk about cross training during recovery.

I like to think of cross training in all aspects of life. I remember someone telling me once that sleep is the best cross training you can do. Heck yes. I’m all over that.

I’ve been trying to focus on taking good care of myself this week. I usually don’t do that great of a job of that after a race. I mean, I know that you should, but I don’t rest as much as I should and not always make the best decisions about getting enough sleep and proper nutrition, etc.

I’m trying to tackle it a bit differently this time and make some better choices.

It’s coming to the end of the week and I feel good. I ran a little today and a little yesterday, but the rest of my workouts have been easy cross training with the classes I teach and on the elliptical at home.

On the sleep scene I’ve been sleeping in and going to bed at a decent time. Obviously some nights are better than others when a certain someone has other plans, but for the most part I’ve been sleeping well.

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This is not accurate by the way. Despite going to bed early, I had a pretty rough night of sleep and was awake from 3:00 am – 4:00 am. I was just laying there not able to sleep. Dang that’s frustrating, isn’t it? But, my little iFit Active Band tells me I was sleeping. No, no I was not. Now I’m really curious how it tracks sleep.


Other things I’ve been doing as cross training this week include keeping up on my supplements. I’m biased to chocolate, but I really dig my CocoaVia capsules. They go really well with my morning iced coffee. Ha ha.

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Healthy circulation is important, especially during recovery.

In addition to scientifically proving that regular consumption of cocoa flavanols can help support healthy circulation, Mars Inc. scientists also discovered that the daily consumption of cocoa flavanols factors into overall health.



Proper nutrition is key during recovery week also. Don’t mind my eating choices for our anniversary the other day. It was a special occasion. Ha. Other than that though, I’ve been eating like a champ.

We’re still on the whole fresh figs on French Toast kick over here for breakfasts.


I’ve been craving macaroni and cheese like crazy lately. I’ve made paleo mac and cheese quite a few times, but last night I really wanted to real thing with the boys.

I had a box of whole wheat organic macaroni and cheese and used Silk unsweetened almond milk and 1/2 the cheese packet. I added an Applegate Farms organic hotdog (leftover from our Wienervention), organic broccoli, a jalapeño and a bunch of garlic salt, crushed red pepper and Trader Joe’s Everyday Seasoning.

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It was so darn good.

It was the perfect comfort dinner for movie night last night.

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I really like this article on recovery week after a marathon I just found this morning.

How to Recover After a Marathon

Besides the normal recommendations, Coach Jeff suggests contrast baths. Eeekk…… I’ve never done those and really can’t say I have a desire to do them.

He also talks reminds us all to not worry about losing running fitness during a recovery week. We all fear that, but in this article, Losing Running Fitness, it explains what actually happens and says we shouldn’t be worried about losing fitness if the break is less than two weeks. There’s some really great information there.

My cross training yesterday looked a little like this.

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No, I do not need a cart. I can carry it all.

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I can also carry all my personal training supplies in one trip from the car to my client.

I like to call it functional cross training. Ha ha.

By the way, I got to introduce my friend and client to her first burpees yesterday. It brought me such joy.



Okay, I’m off to do a little more cleaning cross training today. Laundry, closets, etc.- that’s all part of the recovery cross training, right?


Oh, and did you hear the news?

Competitor Running announced that Meb is racing the New York City Marathon! Woo hoo! I hope we’re on the same flight.


Have a great rest of your day!


What’s something hard you’re going to challenge yourself to do this month?

What kind of functional cross training are you doing this weekend?

Who buys things on Groupon?

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  1. 1
    marti says:

    wow are you a mind reader?? I SO NEEDED THIS TODAY. decided i need to start living outside my comfort zone…i need to go out more… be more social… get out there and do something fun for myself. it might seem hard at first..but ya just gotta do it. im so used to go go go…gotta get this done..that done. not enough do something fun for ME. :) thanks for the continued inspiration kristin. :)

  2. 2
    Erika C says:

    Great read. I’m going to challenge myself with a race. This is huge for me because I’m so afraid of failure. My husband signed me up so I guess it’s a done deal and I have to do it. Eek!

  3. 3
    Katie says:

    My monthly challenge – my first Ironman! :) August 17th – Mont Tremblant!

    And I have to thank you for posting so much about Sunbutter…I bought some yesterday and it was life changing.

  4. 4

    I’ve just started marathon training so a lot of these workouts are hard but I am pushing myself to do them! They are hard but worth it!

  5. 5
    natasha says:

    Not sure what challenge I need right now since everything seems like a challenge right now. Not sure what’s going on but I feel perpetually anxious. Maybe I’ll challenge myself to just cancel a few pet sitting gigs and have a staycation or even book a hotel somewhere but then that makes me anxious trying to plan.


  6. 6

    I’m going to challenge myself by really pushing my speed during training runs. I have a tendency to get stuck in a speed rut and not push myself. I have a mental block against going faster, which is dumb.

    I didn’t cross train this weekend. I ran, a lot. My functional cross training during the week is picking up the kiddos at work – they’re like 30lbs! :)

    I have bought a few things on groupon. I just got on the other day for a restaurant near us for small plates and beer flights – yes please! :)

  7. 7

    I’m going to challenge myself by really pushing my speed during training runs. I have a tendency to get stuck in a speed rut and not push myself. I have a mental block against going faster, which is dumb.

    I didn’t cross train this weekend. I ran, a lot. My functional cross training during the week is picking up the kiddos at work – they’re like 30lbs! :)

    I have bought a few things on groupon. I just got on the other day for a restaurant near us for small plates and beer flights – yes please! :)

  8. 8
    Sam says:

    I love that motto! “Just do hard things” is a great mantra! Sometimes that hardest thing to do is to take it easy and be kind to yourself! It’s easy to recognize your own effort when you push yourself physically, but breaking out of a non-functional routine is JUST as hard, and just as beneficial in the long run! For me I can work out til the cows come home, but networking, or reaching out and asking for help? That is HARD.

    Oh man, sleep is the greatest cross training! Except for swimming, I love swimming. And yoga. And biking. And hiking….And yard work….And peanut butter….what were we talking about again? :)

    That’s way cool that you’ve been hitting the trails lately! Any trail races on your radar? I read “Born to Run” a little while ago and it made me want to move down to Mexico and run the trails with the Tarahumara all day. I find that (based on VERY few experiences) running on trails is way harder than on pavement, but way worth it for the views along the way.


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