2016 remaining goals

The year is very quickly coming to an end, so this is a great time to think about what I want to accomplish in the next 2+ months. I have a ton of travel for work and personal reasons, so I am trying to be reasonable, and be sure my goals are attainable.


  1. NYC Marathon. No brainer. I had a great 25 mile run (run / walk) this past Saturday and it was a huge confidence booster. I feel ready. I would love to finish in 4:45.
  2. Manage November. I am really excited to go to the US twice in the month, but I also have to go to Switzerland and Germany. It will be a busy time and I need to anticipate so that the household continues to function when I am not around.
  3. Continue to stay focused on my clean eating / fitness regimen. I still have a couple more inches to lose around my midsection. No 2017 resolutions for me to get in shape / lose weight, etc. I want to say that will have been accomplished in 2016.
  4. Enjoy the downtime from not having a training schedule. I consider training officially stops on November 6. With the exception of May & June, I have been training for a marathon all year. I am craving other fitness activities and not running at zero dark thirty.
  5. Take advantage of time with my family. When life gets crazy, they keep me grounded.

I am linking up with Marcia at Marcia’s Healthy Slice, Erika at MCM Mama runs and Patty at My no guilt life for Tuesdays on the run.



What one goal do you want to accomplish before the end of December ?

Looking forward to some downtime in the winter months ?

Last long run & it was a good one !

The week was very busy. At work. Fitness wise. With family. And it ended with a very long run.

In short :

  • Monday : 8K run with 25 x 20 second sprints
  • Tuesday : One hour of cardio at the gym with 25 x 20 second sprints on the bike
  • Wednesday : 30 minute chest & back workout
  • Thursday : 8K lunchtime run
  • Friday : Off
  • Saturday : 40,2K / 25 mile run (using 3:1 run:walk ratio)
  • Sunday : 30 minute shoulder / tricep / bicep workout at the gym + 45 minute walk

My long run :

Saturday’s run was the last long one on my training plan. I was up and out by 8 a.m., as soon as it was relatively light out. My daughter took the picture as she was heading out with “Go mom ! I know you can do 25 miles !”


Where to run and how far ? I had not completely decided. I had done my previous long outing through Paris and a second urban run through the city & traffic did not appeal to me, so I decided to stay closer to home, where 90% would be run in the Vincennes forest.

My Galloway plan calls for running the marathon distance or further. My last long run had been 22 miles. I set that as my minimum and 25 as my maximum. I didn’t know how my legs / knees / Achilles would feel, as I have new orthodics. And I felt 25 was more than enough.

Keeping boredom at bay...I had looked for a half marathon this weekend to add variety and break it up, but there was nothing close to where I live. Running 25 miles in the same area can get b.o.r.i.n.g, so I would do a loop, anywhere from 3 to 4 miles, in one direction, then do it backwards. I would then find another loop and repeat. I came across some really interesting things, as least they kept me entertained for 5+ hours !

Paris firemen. They always run in Vincennes forest on Saturday morning, so I chase them a little bit. Look at those muscles !


A race ! What !? I was sure there wasn’t a race this weekend, so was bummed when I saw this.


But I kept running and quickly understood that it was an obstacle course. I passed 6 or 7 different torture devices obstacles. Definitely NOT my thing.


Then I came across this hoop game. I had seen it before and when I talked about it with my kids, we were convinced it was some version of disc golf. This time I stopped to watch and the players were running around with this thing between their legs. I couldn’t figure out what it was, it kind of looked like a horse whip but bigger. I was intrigued.  The people looked really funny passing a ball around while trying to run with this stick wedged in their crotch.


I finally figured it out. They are playing Quiddich. WTH ?

Otherwise, I came across :

  • an old colleague,
  • peacocks, geese, swans,
  • prostitutes looking to turn a trick (three of them were lined up on one stretch I ran down and back on, and one car drove by several times slowing down in front of them. I finally figured it out. LOL. Kept me entertained),
  • a photo shoot for a wedding,
  • video / film / advertising being made,
  • I stopped to talk to a man with a basset hound (I grew up with bassets, love them)
  • a boy whose bike had toppled over and he was picking up all the chestnuts that had rolled out of his basked. Close to 100 chestnuts. I held his bike so it wouldn’t topple again.

As with all of my long runs, I break them down. I broke this one down into 10K portions. I still struggle from about km 18 to 25 and I had cramps in my right buttock and lower right leg for at least half the time. I stopped several times to stretch. Once I hit 30 I was feeling better, the sun had come out, my music was blasting. I was confident I could hit 35 and when I hit 35 I was feeling really good actually. My cramping was now gone, I had no knee pain what so ever. I was thinking of exactly what I would report to my podiatrist because I owed him a call. I felt so good, the last mile was one of my fastest. By that time I was ecstatic and feeling very confident… I wanted to tell my podiatrist I loved him for fixing my knee & Achilles niggles.

I finished the run by trying to take photos with me doing a happy jump. Well, I do not recommend jumping after 25 miles. And I was completely off with the timer on my phone. This is the closest I got :


Then, I was on my way home and who do I run into ? My podiatrist !


It was a great run, and besides feeling like I was in a train wreck being a bit stiff  today, I feel fine. I slept poorly after my long run, as I always do, but no big deal !

Three weeks and counting !

And that is a wrap !

I am linking up with Holly and Tricia at Hoho runs and Misssippipiddlin for their Weekly Wrap.

How was your week ?

What do you do to occupy your time on a long run ? or bike ride ?


Final Friday Five : October crazies

I am linking up with Courtney at Eat Pray Run, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What, and Mar at Mar on the Run for the final Friday Five. These lovely ladies have hosted this link up for years and have decided it was time to stop. This was the first blog linkup I participated it, and it was also the means of initially meeting so many other bloggers. The link up will be missed, but I completely understand that life sometimes calls for change.

As there is no set theme, I figured some randomness was in order. So here goes…. this month has been CRAZY !

  1. Running ! A little more than 3 weeks until the NYC marathon. I am getting darn excited. Bib numbers and logistic details were released this week, making it tangible. Several people have told me I am starting off on the top of the bridge. Don’t know if that is good or bad ! Maybe good for the views but bad if it rains ?


2. Work ! October.is.busy. While I haven’t had much travel (that starts up in November), I am doing some strategic planning for next year, managing a very big opportunity with my client, as well as working with some new colleagues around the globe. We also changed office space recently and are now in 100% open space. It takes a little bit of getting used to, as we do not have assigned desks. We have small lockers (seen on the right side of the photo underneath) to keep our things. Our team has ”designated area”, but a desk ? Depends what time you get into the office. We also have no fixed phones, everything is either through Skype, and our landline number also now rings through the computer. It takes a bit of getting used to but I am loving it so far.


3. College ! My eldest is applying to one art school in the US (all other schools in France). Early admission deadline is November 1st which means we are busy pulling everything together now. The tough part is getting letters of recommendation (that is not the norm in France) and writing an essay. Essay writing and structure is something you learn in the US or the UK, France has a different writing style. Try writing your first essay (at 17) when you have never done one. Not easy. Luckily my aunt was a guidance counselor for years. Thank you Irene.


4. Fitness ! I started my second 6 week program with Amanda Tress (amandatress.com) #fasterwaytofatloss. While I have to adjust a bit for marathon training, I love the variety of the workouts, accountability and expectations. And did I mention the results ? In the first 6 weeks I lost 8+ inches. Will keep you posted for this second round.


5. Food ! I am loving the fall fruits & veggies. Butternut squash is one of my favorites, as are apples & pears. I have already roasted, crumbled and grilled. This weekend I hope to find a spaghetti squash, you can only get them here for a month or 2 per year.




Tell me one random thing about your month !

Which fall veggie do you prefer ?

If you have high school aged kids, are you surviving the college application process ?

What is your workspace like ?

Courtney, Mar and Cynthia, I will miss you !


I needed some down time


I was physically and mentally tired this past week. It is a combination of several factors… not only do shorter days put a hamper on my mood, but I have been marathon training since July. I had a 22 miler through Paris last weekend, and my knee & Achilles needed to recover. I added variety into my fitness routine since mid August which makes 5 days of running / fitness per week for the past past 2 months.

This week, my body asked for a break.  So I listened to it. While I did run on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday, I didn’t plank. I didn’t go to the gym. I didn’t cook much. I didn’t blog much. I hardly took any pictures.

I saw friends. I spent time with my girls. I slept late. I watched some TV (OITNB, Westworld). I did administrative things. I did fall cleaning. I rotated out my summer clothes. I talked to family. I took advantage of the gorgeous fall weather.

On Friday & Saturday, my husband and I went to our house in the country side. We went out to eat. We went to the local market. We took a walk. We talked about our NYC trip.


The garlic (top center) is as big as the peppers !


Part of our two mile walk near our country home


Squash, squash, squash !

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The slower pace change of pace was highly beneficial. By Sunday, I was ready to run. And I was rewarded with a perfect one. Perfect weather. No pain.  My GPS watch couldn’t find the signal (again !) so I just ran and basked in the pure joy of putting one foot in front of the other. No paces to hit. No dictated run/walk interval. No mileage goal.

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So the week, ended on a perfect note.

Exactly what my body needed.


And that is a wrap !

I am linking up with Holly and Tricia at Hoho runs and Misssippipiddlin for their Weekly Wrap.

A big shout out to our host, Holly, for running the Chicago marathon today  !

Ever need some down time ?  Does the fall make you want to sleep in ?




Running through Paris

I am training for the NYC marathon and had a long run on my plan this past weekend. I like to get it done on Saturday if possible, so I have the weekend to recover. The weatherman was announcing rain coming in about noon, so I knew I would have to be up and out of here early if I didn’t want to get caught in it. I was up at 6 a.m. and had breakfast immediately. I always eat before a long run, and give my body some time to digest and get things moving before heading out. I had prepared everything the night before, so I was out of the house around 7:30 a.m., just when the sun was coming up.

I had 22 miles to do. I hadn’t mapped out my route but the last few long runs have been in my usual stomping grounds so I was craving some variety and looking for something to mentally break up the distance. Paris gets busy around 10 a.m. so I figured I had a couple quiet hours before it was taken over by tourists, traffic and pedestrians. I live on the east side, so I decided to start at a very eastern point and run a strait line due west. This would take me past most of the monuments.

So I made my way to Nation (my easterly point) and ran towards the Bastille. These starting miles are hard because of this :

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I must have run by 20 bakeries. They all tempted taunted me with the smell of freshly baked croissants and crusty French bread. The eastern side of the city is very residential and of course it was breakfast time.

I came to the Marais district after about 4 miles, and you can see how few people are out at 9 a.m. The French are not early risers.


I was so happy to stumble upon this, public toilets :


Finding (functioning) toilets is one of the hardest things about long runs through the city. I often stop at a cafe or at my hair dresser’s but since he doesn’t open until noon, I need another solution for morning runs.

I ran down the Rue de Rivoli, which is known for major shopping. It is bustling as of 10 a.m. so I was happy to zip down that street before the stores opened. I then came to the Louvre, and people were already standing in line, and taking selfies.


I turned to run through the Tuileries gardens, and was blessed with the most beautiful view. The sun was shining on the top of the obelisk in Place de la Concorde, and on the Arc de Triomphe in the background. So I ran through the gardens under the glorious sun.


I made my way to the Champs Elysees. Again, no people ! Well, except for 1) all the Asian tourists, many of whom were in the middle of the avenue taking selfies, and 2) the people standing in line for Louis Vuitton.

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I then made my way to the Eiffel Tower. This view never gets old. Ever.



I crossed the river and made my way along the river walk. Not too many people out along the water except the runners. One HAD to stop and step in front of my camera as I was getting ready to take a picture.


Outside restaurants and cafes were setting up, and I think there was some kind of event because there were several arty exhibits. Tree stumps and rocks ?


I kept going then stopped at Notre Dame. By this time there were many people out and the streets were getting crowded.




I started to head home. It was slow going because a lot of it is on cobble stone. I came across the Parisian firefighters doing some drills.



I then made my way back to finish the last 4 miles near where I live.

I loved the variety of the sights, and it really broke my long run into manageable portions. I also discovered a couple new areas of the city, and… since I hadn’t run here in 6 months, I also discovered a ton of construction and refurbishing.

I am linking up with Marcia at Marcia’s Healthy Slice, Erika at MCM Mama runs and Patty at My no guilt life for Tuesdays on the run.



Do you like changing up your routes and adding variety or do you prefer to run the same routes ?

Do you like running through the city ?