Friday, October 3, 2014

Flashback Friday: Octobers Past

First of all, HAPPY FRIDAY!!! Hooray, hooray, I love Friday. I love waking up later. I love enjoying my coffee. I love blogging on my couch while watching my DVR. I love productive mornings around the house. I love only working for 2 hours at lunchtime. Yup, I love Friday. You know what else I love? October. My birthday has now come and gone, so it's officially time for me to start cracking down on the holidays. Yippie! I know it's just October, but it's time for fall decor, the beginning of Christmas shopping, Halloween, cooler Saturday morning runs, more football games and everything else that fall and holiday season brings us.

I decided to take today to look back on my Octobers past. You'll see a common trend with things I happen to love a lot. Football...running...weddings...

October 2009


Enjoying my final semester in college. {I graduated in December!} Aggie football, fun times with friends, teaching lots of group exercise classes and only taking 9 hours of school!

October 2010


Six months post wedding and this seems to be the only picture I have! Of course this was a few months pre-blog. Luckily, this is one of my favorite pictures of my daddy and I. It kind of reminds me of this one...

My daddy and me...20 years ago!

October 2011



Another Packers picture, but this time we're actually at Lambeau Field watching the Packers kick the Broncos' butts! It was an amazing trip with my dad and baby brother. I'm ready to go back that's for sure.




October 2012


Danced the night away with two of my favorite people, Luke and Courtney! Isn't she gorgeous? Now if only they didn't live so far away in Denver. I guess all the more reason for us to go back up there again. Especially since we didn't get to see them last time!

October 2013


October is when marathon training season kicks into high gear! Long runs every Saturday and we're running double digits each week. For some runs, we can tackle some races like the Houston Half! Last year, it rained so hard that the race was postponed an hour. We were able to start once the storm rolled off, but it was still raining. Despite a much needed potty break and the rain, we still finished in 1:56. Let's hope the weather is in our favor in 3 weeks for this year's race!




And here we are in October 2014. October 3rd to be specific...

Thanks for the pic Ali!

And it's Friday. As we've already established. I hope y'all have a wonderful Friday and an even better weekend! Happy October y'all!

When do you think Holiday Season starts?
What's your favorite part of October?
Mine is pumpkin spice lattes and football for sure!

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Birthday Shenanigans {+ a workout!}

Guess what? Last time I blogged, I was 26 years old. Now I'm 27! What? Yes, over the weekend I officially turned 27 :) I'm now into my late 20's and I'm not sure exactly how that happened. I started off my birthday weekend with an 11 mile run with my running club followed by a fun little "birthday party" at my parents' house! Of course it was Frozen themed...I sometimes wonder if I'm 7 or 27. No shame.




Saturday also happened to be an Aggie football game day, so everyone came over for food, drinks, swimming, cake and Aggie game day! The game was looking a little rough and was becoming quite the buzz kill until the end. Some how, some way the Fightin' Texas Aggies pulled through with a last minute win! That gave us all the second wind we needed to take some pictures and of course jump in the pool!





I have the best friends ever :) It's true. Kristin brought over some fun props for the most perfect picture opps. Thanks to my dad for being our patient photographer. I think we got about 30 pics! Here are just a few of my favorites.





And no birthday is complete without presents! I got some cute bags, lots of jewelry, perfume, gift cards, money and all sorts of fun goodies. Spoiled rotten I must say. Did I mention how awesome my friends and family are?






In honor of my 27th birthday I created a challenging full body, no weights workout for y'all to do at home, outside, or anywhere really! 




Give it a go and let me know what you think. My Monday afternoon class said it was killer...in the best way! My back and hamstrings are still feeling it two days later! I love being workout sore! 

Happy hump day y'all!

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Lately.

Happy Friday lovelies! Can y'all believe that it's already the last Friday of September? Where did my birth-month go? Where did this year go? They say time flies when you're having fun. I've definitely been having fun. My exhaustion is proof of that. I'm planning to end September with a big birthday BANG and lots of fun is to be had, so hopefully it doesn't go by too fast! So since time is just flying, here's what's been going on at the Gougler's lately.

Lately I've been...

...watching my puppies play like crazies, Orange is the New Black, Tone It Up girls on You Tube, Game of Thrones and my usual reality TV crap on the DVR :)

...eating lots of grilled chicken, mashed cauliflower, overnight oats, Quest Bars, Panera Bread Thai Chicken Salad, lots of fish, tailgate foods, birthday cupcakes!

...crafting fun designs with some old t-shirts, burp cloths with my sewing machine, tutus for my Princess race and for a new business venture my mom and I are starting! More to come on that soon :)



...traveling to College Station and Dallas. It's been pretty fantastic hanging out with all those lovely faces below. It doesn't get much better than getting to spend time with your best friends every weekend! We also love how every where we go there's a Bucee's to stop at!




...training for the Houston Half in October, Tough Mudder in November, Run Girl Half in December, Chevron Houston Marathon in January and the Glass Slipper Challenge (5K, 10K & Half) in February. Lots of running! I'll be tackling 11 miles Saturday morning with my running girls!

...working hard at the gym! Teaching lots of classes, challenging myself, pushing my clients and learning new things. I'm currently teaching 6 classes a week and sometimes more! By this afternoon, I'll have taught 9 classes this week! From kickboxing to strength and cycling to Pilates. Let's just say, I've been very busy. My alarm is still going off at 3:45am and I'm still crashing before 9:00pm. I don't love waking up that early, but as soon as I'm at the gym, I remember why I do it.




...playing around at my parents as often as possible. The weather has been beautiful and I love taking advantage of their pool. Moose loves the pool too. Playing fetch in the water is his absolute favorite. A few weeks ago, Emily found a Nerf dart gun and we've been playing with that a lot. Just call me Tris! {From Divergent for those of you who didn't get the reference ;)}

...loving life! Of course some days are harder than others and things are far from perfect, but all in all, life is good. It doesn't get much better than having so many people that love you, loving your job and having fun.

My favorite month is coming to an end, so we're going to go out with a bang. A big birthday bang! T-minus two days until I turn 27 and I'm officially in my late twenties! I hope y'all have a wonderful weekend and don't forget to get up and move on September 28th for #ActiveNationDay! Share what you're doing on social media and join the movement!

What have y'all been doing lately?

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Thursday, September 25, 2014

#ActiveNationDay

September has always been one of my favorite months. And by one of my favorites, I mean, it's my favorite. So many things happen in September! Running season is getting underway. My favorite season begins. And my favorite day is in September. September 28th to be exact. Obviously, that's because it's my birthday! As a lover of all birthdays, I super love mine :) This year, there is a little huge something dear to my heart that makes September 28th even more special. This year, September 28th is Active Nation Day sponsored by Lorna Jane!


September 28, 2013, post half marathon in Cape Cod

Active Nation Day is a movement created in 2012 by Lorna Jane to help women strive to maintain an active lifestyle. Lorna Jane will be hosting events all over the world this coming Sunday, where you can learn and take part in a specially choreographed fitness routine. Over the last three years, the women of Active Nation Day has collectively moved over five million miles together. This year will be the global debut of Active Nation Day and we're sure to move even more this year alone!

Hiking in Bergen, Norway

There are tons of ways to get involved:

  1. Join the movement! See if you're close to one of the many #ActiveNationDay headquarters. Here are a few: Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Santa Monica, CA, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Dubai, Johannesburg, Amsterdam, and more!
  2. Download the Lorna Jane app from your app store! It's free and there's so much you can do including activity tracking, delicious recipes, nutrition tips, motivation and more.
  3. Learn the #LJMove and enter to win a $1000 Gift Card to Lorna Jane by posting a video doing the dance move on Instagram. When you post, don't forget to has tag #LJMove and #ActiveNationDay. The move is super easy and will only take a few seconds to learn. Check it out now!
  4. Participate! Track your movement on the Lorna Jane app, submit your LJMove with your own personal flair, post your activity on social media tagging @lornajaneactive and #ActiveNationDay, and make new friends along the way! Become a member of the Active Nation Day Sisterhood and spread the word...just like I am now! 
So are you going to become a part of the sisterhood? Join me now and get moving! As a personal trainer, group exercise instructor, distance runner and lover of fitness, movements like this are so important to me. Let's join together, fight obesity, promote healthy living and just have fun! I plan to enjoy the cooler temps outdoors, take an easy recovery jog {long run Saturday!}, play with my pups and encourage my friends and family to do a little more than just sit on the couch and watch football all day. Just a little movement goes a long way!




Will you join me?!
What are you going to do this Sunday to participate in #ActiveNationDay?

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Monday, September 22, 2014

Marathon Tuesday...

...because Marathon Monday clearly didn't happen. 

Another week, another Monday gone onto another Tuesday and another day to tackle our to do lists! I hope y'all had a wonderful weekend! Mine was spent up in Dallas with my girl Kristin and my sister, mother and father-in-law! Aggie football was watched, good food was consumed and long runs were conquered. Now it's time to take on a long, busy week! Instead of skipping ahead, let's rewind to review last week's workouts!




Monday: Total Body cardio workout
Tuesday: 45 minute spin class
Wednesday: 3 mile tempo run {8:35 pace}
Thursday: 2 miles speed work + 1 easy mile + Upper Body workout
Friday: 45 minute spin class
Saturday: OFF
Sunday: 9 mile easy, long run {1:24:35}




My long run was on Sunday this week. I really needed Saturday to sleep in and we wanted to run in Dallas along the Katy Trail, so we did. And by we, I mean JP and I. He's running the Houston Half with Chandra, Melanie and me next month, so I convinced him that he did indeed need to run all nine miles. Much to his dismay of course. As always he did a great job and helped me through my little rough patch when my lungs and I weren't getting along too well.

Speaking of not being able to breathe well...most of you may not know, but I have asthma. For the most part it is exercise and allergy induced. For someone who works out often, runs long distance and has crazy bad allergies, this can cause some issues. I meet a lot of people that say they don't run because they have asthma. I try not to let asthma control me and what I choose to do. As a competitive cheerleader in high school, I had quite a few issues, but learned how to push through. My cheer coach was really awesome and he taught me how to control my breathing, calm myself and continue pushing through. Believe it or not, the 2 1/2 minute competition routines were really intense and left me gasping for air. I'd compare it to intense sprints. Over time, I learned to control my asthma and not let it control me. That being said, here are a few tips for running with asthma!

1. Carry your inhaler with you when you run. I keep mine in my handheld water bottle pouch. Don't have one? Nathan and Ultimate Direction make really great lightweight bottles. I love both of mine and don't go running outside without it! Carrying my inhaler makes me feel more secure and should I start to have difficulty breathing, I can use it.

2. If you get worked up, slow down and walk. Sometimes I start breathing hard and get worked up while I'm running. This causes my breathing to become worse and sometimes I even start wheezing. I usually take this as a clue to slow down. Sometimes I don't and JP makes me. What would I do without him? Once I'm able to regain composure, I can start up again. I usually get a second wind and feel much stronger.

3. Pay attention to the pollen count. Allergies are usually huge triggers for people with asthma. When the pollen count in high maybe consider sticking to the treadmill or indoor track. You can also postpone your run to the next day, but as a runner, I know that won't happen. Instead, slow down your pace a bit and make sure you have an inhaler. **FYI: Pollen counts are usually lowest in the early morning!

4. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Sometimes easier said than done, but I promise it helps! Breathing in through your nose allows you to take deeper, more controlled breaths. In cold weather, it also keeps the cold air from cooling your chest so quickly!

5. Don't skip your warm up. Start your run with a slow, easy mile. Warm up your body and your lunges. This will help you breathe easier throughout your entire run. You may think that you want to save your lungs for speed work or tempo work or even the race, but warming up with help with optimal performance!

Those are just a few tips from me! Now, I'm not a doctor by any means. Just your average runner suffering from running with breathing problems. If you have severe asthma, be sure to contact your doctor before starting a running routine. Always be safe and it can't hurt to have a medical tag stating you have asthma just in case!

Hope y'all have a wonderful Monday!

Do you have any medical issues that interfere with your workouts?
How do you cope?

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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

What I Ate: Gluten Free Banana Bread



Let me let y'all in on a little secret. I love to eat. I mean LOVE. Food makes me happy. As it does for most people. I think my crazy early mornings, long days and active lifestyle make me hungrier than most. As a fitness professional, I feel like I have to be really conscience about what I'm putting into my body. I'm far from perfect. I toe the line when it comes to being healthy versus downing all the sugar. Did I mention how much I love sugar? Whenever I find a healthy-ish recipe I love, I stick with it and often find some tweaks here and there to make it better or spice it up! Today I want to share with y'all my Banana Bread recipe that just so happens to be Paleo & Gluten Free!




I originally found a paleo banana bread recipe because I wanted to find something that Charlotte could eat when she was living with us since she has a gluten intolerance. It made more sense just to make something that everyone at home could eat and tasted delicious. Here's what you need:

Ingredients: (recipe from Peanut Butter Runner)

3/4 tsp of baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp of salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp all spice
3/4 cup of almond flour
1/4 cup of coconut flour
2 TBS melted coconut oil
2 large eggs
2 very ripe medium to large bananas, mashed
1/4 cup of maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract

tsp = teaspoon
TSP = tablespoon

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. You have a few options when it comes to pans and preparation. (a) Make muffins and use cupcake liners. (b) Make muffins and grease a muffin tin. (c) Make a loaf and grease a 9x5 loaf pan. (d) Make a loaf and use parchment paper. I love using parchment paper when I'm baking because it makes clean up super easy!
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together all of your dry ingredients: baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and flours. 
  3. In another small/medium bowl, mix together your wet ingredients: coconut oil, eggs, bananas, maple syrup and vanilla until very well combined.
  4. Add wet ingredients to the dry and gently mix together until combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Pour into prepared cupcake/muffin or loaf pan. Bake muffins for 20-25 minutes and bake loaf for 45-55 minutes or until set in the center and a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in pan for about 15-20 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.



I originally tried making this with almond flour only. It worked, but the coconut flour gives it a better texture! I also made them once with too many bananas. Be careful, there is such thing as too many bananas in banana bread. It was well...juicy. Not exactly the type of work I want to use when describing any type of bread.

I'm planning on making this same recipe and substituting the banana with pumpkin puree! I'll also be sure to add in some pumpkin spice to really enhance the pumpkin flavor. I mean it is pumpkin season. Fall officially begins on Sunday! Can y'all believe it? I can't. Pumpkin crazy season is among us. I'm ready. Bring it on. But until then...enjoy some banana bread.





Here are a few of my other go to recipes:
(Some of my own and some from fellow bloggers!)

3 Bean Crock Pot Chili
Turkey & Rice Stuffed Bell Peppers
Turkey Spaghetti Squash
Chicken Spaghetti
Cake Batter Pancakes
Banana Almond Smoothie

What are some of y'alls go to recipes? 
Anything I should try?!

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Monday, September 15, 2014

Marathon Monday: Episode 1

I'm not sure exactly how it happened, but somewhere along the way it became the 7th week of marathon training season. What? Only 18 weeks left! While that does seem like a ways away, life has been flying by lately. The crazy holiday season will be here and before we know it, the Houston marathon will be here!

I decided to redevote a day of the week to talking about running. Tips, tricks, accountability, workouts, so on and so forth. So let's jump in! Here's what last week looked like for me!

Sunday: OFF
Monday: Total Body cardio workout + 1 mile run
Tuesday: 45 minute spin class
Wednesday: 4 mile tempo run
Thursday: 2 miles speed work + 1 easy mile + Upper Body workout
Friday: 45 minute spin class
Saturday: 7 mile run (1 EP, 5 MP, 1 EP)

EP=Easy Pace
MP=Marathon Pace

I'm training with the 3:45 hr group this year so instead of being the fastest in my group, I'm now one of the slower ones. It's a bit demoralizing, but I just have to remember that I'm challenging myself. The 3:45 group's marathon pace is around an 8:30 min/mile. My ideal pace is actually around 8:50-8:55 min/mile which is still 10-15 second/mile faster than a 4:00 hr marathon. I know it doesn't seem like a lot but when we're talking in terms of 26 miles, it's a bit deal! I just need to get over the fact that I'm not the best and pace myself. I'm too competitive. 

Speaking of pacing myself, this week's running tip is all about pace! When running distance, you have to focus on a goal pace. If you want to finish in a certain time, you need to be aware if how fast you're going throughout a race. Adrenaline makes you want to take off at the start of the race. Unfortunately, depleting your energy levels that early is a sure way to fall short of your goals. Here are a few ways to learn how to better pace yourself!
1. Follow the rules of long distance training! Save you fast runs for speed and tempo work and keep your long runs at a slower pace. It's all about time on your feet. Don't forget to do your speed work too!

2. Skip the watch and run by feeling. Some runs are harder than others. Using your watch to pace you isn't always bad, but life, weather and other things can get in the way. Learning to run by feel means that you know how to adjust your training. This will help come race day!

3. Fuel properly during longer runs. Not having adequate energy intake is going to make you bonk. You performance ability will suffer greatly and leave you feeling like you didn't do your best! Fuel during your run should be tested during long runs. Find our what works for you: your stomach, your energy, your taste buds :) Then put it in practice on race day, don't try anything new!

4. On race day, start slow and work your way up to race pace. If you start slow, you should be able to finish fast. Assuming race day conditions are up to par of course! Make it your goal to have a negative split during your race!


source

This coming week, I have a few more miles on the docket and plan to be up to par on my training schedule. An easy run may have to be substituted with a spin class every now and then because well...it's my job and I get paid to teach! I have to make sure I'm not over doing it and getting adequate rest.

What races are you training for this season?
Do you have any other pacing tips?


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