Friday Favorites: Comfortable Pace and Being Kind

We made it to Friday. Did this week seem especially long to anyone else? I’ve been thinking it’s Friday since about Tuesday night, and I’ve been pining for the weekend ever since.

Sweet, it’s nearly here.

This weekend has some serious running endeavors planned out, and I’m a little afraid. Mainly because Sunday is supposed to be a—GAH—20 mile run.

Damnit. I said it, therefore I’m accountable.

I’m planning on approaching it with this mindset: I’ve done it before, it’s only two miles more than I ran two weeks ago, and there will be many cookies on either end of it.

Also, I have this new strategy in tackling long runs—or any run, for that matter—and it’s new to me. It’s called: Running at a Comfortable Pace.

Groundbreaking, right?! I have this really horrible fixation on running at or below MP(Marathon Pace) on, oh, every run I do. It’s not an extremely difficult pace, but it’s not exactly comfortable either. This habit is so silly. Runs do not always need to be as fast as you ideally would want, and in fact it’s good for you to do some slow and steady miles in addition to quicker runs.

Blah, blah, blah…I know this, and I need to get better. Unfortunately, I am a distance runner who still has the brain of her former sprinter self. However, yesterday morning I was incredibly intent on running at a comfortable pace. I knew not checking my watch and panicking if I wasn’t around 8:00 minute miles would be hard, but I really wanted to just “feel it” instead of push it. Highly successful run; I finished 12 miles in 1:41:30, and although it’s not MP, it’s not bad for being a very comfortable run.

Let’s get to some favorites though, and I’ll leave 20 sweaty miles for Sunday AM.

– $5 round-trip airfare

HOLLA

Thanks to lucky timing and to my Alaska Airlines credit card, I ended up paying out-of-pocket FIVE DOLLARS for my spring vacation to my home turf of Los Angeles, CA. Okay, yea sure, that also means that I won’t have another free flight until I purchase thousands of dollars worth of things on my card—but the novelty of a $5 flight is still awesome.

That being said, I am PUMPED for this trip. I love to travel, whether it’s to a place I’ve never been or to a place I’ve been dozens of times. I’ll be meeting up with my family for a week of desert camping (better than it sounds) and perusing through Lotus Land looking for Seth and Sandy Cohen.

– My Timex watch

This was a 10 miler I clocked recently. NBD

You can keep your fancy Garmins and heart rate monitors. My little blue Ironman Timex and I are just peachy-keen happy with one another. I got this guy(or maybe it’s a girl, I actually never thought about it) a little over three years ago, and s/he’s been kicking ever since.

Don’t tell my baby blue, but I have toyed with the idea of getting a real Garmin watch. I know it all—keeping logs of my heart rate, my splits, my mileage, etc. would be an ideal addition to training. I know someday (don’t tell lil blue!) I’ll get one, however for right now I like not knowing my miles and calories burned on a moment’s notice. There’s something fun about doing the math after a run to figure out my pace and rate, and even when I do get all fancy and digital I plan on keeping my trusty Timex sidekick around. She(I decided female feels right) and I have been through a lot together in my life as a runner, and I could never, actually, let her go.

– Holiday Appropriate M and M’s

If you ask me to make dessert, I WILL make too much and I WILL bring options

Correction: Accessorizing Desserts with Holiday Appropriate M and M’s

BF and I decided that for V-day, we would make dinner together and he would provide the libations and I would provide the dessert. Obviously I was torn with this task; not because it was too daunting or I didn’t have time, but because the possibilities were too endless. In the end, I couldn’t decide and ended up just supplying us with two options. This was a very good idea, despite the fact that I think I’m still sweating brownie batter.

And yes, the plate above was originally intended for the two of us.

And no, we did not finish all of it. I do have some self control people—and plus, the best part of making yummy things is having BF bring them to his office and therefore winning girlfriend points.

– My Car

{This isn't actually my real car, but it's pretty darn spot on}

So I didn’t actually own a car myself until I graduated college, therefore buying this car was not only a milestone in becoming an adult, it was a milestone in gaining automotive liberty!

I absolutely love this little Toytoa Corolla, named Glinda, and she’s been a trooper ever since I got her—off Craigslist, I’ll have you know. Sure, she’s had some interesting moods at times, as in she doesn’t feel like starting, or she doesn’t feel like shutting down the engine when the key is out of the ignition…THIS HAPPENED.

BUT this little girl has been quite reliable, and I still perk up whenever I see her ready to take me all the places I need to go.

– Random Acts of Kindness

This photo is completed unrelated. But it works for some reason, doesn't it? Also, you're welcome.

Listen up: Today is National Random Act of Kindness Day!

I will fully admit that I think this recent onset of “National” holidays is a bit fishy, but as someone who both loves holidays and communal kindness, I’ll pay attention to this one.

Something I wholeheartedly believe in is the concept of Paying it Forward. We live in a world where approximately 99% of our energy is focused on Number One. We are self-serving creatures by nature, and in a lot of ways we cannot help it—it’s how we’re hardwired in order for survival. However, since I’m pretty sure that the majority of Americans aren’t currently being run down by lions and are within 50 miles of some source of food, I think we can take at least a day to do something for someone else.

{And if you are currently being hunted by safari animals or you’re in a desolate region without food or water, WTF are you doing reading this blog? Also, I know you have either a smart phone or a laptop, therefore I don’t really feel bad for you.}

Moving on, I dare you to try reaching outside of yourself to do one nice thing for someone else. It takes such little effort, but it can make—in my opinion—all the difference in the world. It’s as simple as giving the change in your pocket to the homeless man you pretend to ignore every day, complimenting a stranger on their bag (this should be genuine—btw), or paying for a stranger’s coffee. I am convinced that acts of kindness have a chain reaction, and they are a perfect example of small efforts making a big difference. Paying it Forward is one of the most accessible and simplest ways in which we can make a change in our world. And frankly, with all the hostility, anger, and self-absorption that clouds our outlook on society—we could all use a little more kindness. I truly believe this, and I think you’ll find that doing something nice for someone else will bring a spring to your step as well.

Kindness doesn’t need to be altruistic. But we do need more of it.

 

5 more faves in the bag! I hope you are getting psyched for your weekend ahead, and if you’re willing to share…

What Random Act of Kindness have you received before? What are your Friday Favorites?

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