Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Searching for Victoria's Secret

I recently had to purchase a few new sports bras because I found that a few of mine were A) quite old and B) looked pretty gross even after being washed.

This one's from 2006...
I don't know about you, but I typically can't find sports bras (that I like) at the TJ Maxx's for under $20, and I'm not going to spend $20 on a C9 one from Target. Uhh, it's Target, which is half a step up from Walmart. Ok maybe a whole step. Regardless, you shouldn't have to spend more than $20 on something from TJ Maxx or Target; these aren't high-end stores. I'm also definitely not going to spend $500 on one from Lululemon. Does it also come with liposuction? If so, I may reconsider.

I took myself to Victoria's Secret - Sport section of their website and did some shopping. Here are the results:

DISCLAIMER: I paid for each of these bras. The opinions below are my own and in no way influenced by Adriana or Candice.
However, if Victoria's Secret wants to send me some free stuff, I wouldn't turn that down. Just sayin'.

The "Player" - $15
The Player is your standard, racerback sports bra. Comes in a wide variety of fun colors/patterns and is only $15. I bought two. Bye TJ Maxx.

The "Crossback" - $20
The Crossback is a much cheaper version of the infamous Lululemon strappy thing everyone has these days. It's labeled for "light" use so I probably won't wear it for running. So far I've worn it to the gym and it works fine there. It comes with those useless, removable nip-pads that are great until you wash it and then become origami in the farthest corners of the bra.

The "Lightweight" - $25
They call it the Lightweight yet recommend it for Medium-impact (and people think models aren't smart). I like this one though. There is some padding which is slightly annoying but I can get over it.

The (doesn't appear to be on website anymore) - $20
You know the scene from The Sweetest Thing where Cameron Diaz is trying on clothes in her bikini top and stops to talk about how her boobs were 'up here' when she was 22 but now gravity has taken them down at 28. This bra would get her back to age 22. I think this was a previous style of the Angel sports bra. There's a plastic ring connecting all those back straps AND it's a hook-close which makes it impossible to put on without assistance. Oh, and there's underwire! Ya know, because you need to look perky on a run. I still like it, though I've worn it more to the gym than on a run.

The "Incredible" - $35
As in, it's Incredible that my boobs just grew 3 sizes! This beaut not only comes with underwire and a hook-close, but it's also padded. PADDED. Because we're not just here to exercise. Anyway, it's getting returned.

The "Ultimate" - $35
Whoa. I mean just look at it. It looks like it would fit a DD! Underwire again here, which I especially didn't like because you can see it all across the front when wearing. Also padded. It is advertised as their running bra, which almost makes me feel like I should try it out on a run. It gets a lot of good reviews, but in the end I just don't like how huge it looks so I'll take my $35 back please k thx bye.

Remind me in a year to do a "how they held up" post. I'm interested to see if they're well-made for actual exercise and not just air punches and 3-lb dumbbell curls.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Speed Hurts

After the Ann Arbor marathon in early April, part of me wanted to keep up the consistency, but a bigger part of me decided to be lazy. In this case, lazy = 3-6 mile runs 4 times a week, with a 10-12 miler once a month. As though that monthly long run was doing anything for me...

By the time the heat & humidity came (who am I kidding it was already here in April) I was driving the struggle bus. In late June I started using my heart rate monitor again as my excuse to be slow and take walk breaks. Gotta stay in that fat burning zone amiright?

My fat-burning zone must be broken. It's all still here.

After about 6 weeks of "heart rate training" (that term is used very loosely) I bit the bullet and tried to exert myself on a run. It hurt.

August 3rd - 2 mile tempo run
Goal: I hope to God I can still run sub-8:00 miles.
Result: 7:51, 7:49

Hamstrings were not appreciative, but I survived.

It then took me 9 more days to convince myself I should do it again. This time, I hit up the track for some sprint repeats.

August 14th - 2's & 4's
3 sets of 200, 200, 400 with equal distance rest in between
Goal: 200's in 48, 400's in 96
Result: 200's avg 45.8, 400's avg 95.6

This was my first track run since February and my second time running hard (also probably since February) so I'm guesstimating at paces here. So far, I seem to be pretty good at guesstimating.

Since this workout fell right in the middle of the Olympics, I also attempted a 100m dash before cooling down.

Watch out Usain Bolt, it only took me 17 seconds.

August 16th - 3 mile tempo run
Goal: Can I possibly do 3 miles sub-8?
Result: 7:57, 7:51, 7:35

Either I super sandbagged or I was just really, really ready to be done. That third mile definitely hurt but I assumed it was because it was the third mile. I'm learning how difficult it is to run hard after a year of running not-hard.

August 20th - 1000s
1000m repeats are the worst idea ever. At least when you choose a loop that has a big ass hill for at least 500 of those meters. I went into this workout thinking I would do 10 repeats (aka 6.2 hard miles). Seems logical since I've done 3 miles hard right? Exactly. Needless to say I dialed it back to 6 (my legs wanted to stop at 4).
Goal: 4:43
Result: 4:44 average

This was hard. I blame the hill. And being out of speed-shape. And maybe a little on the 9358392% humidity. But, once again, I survived.

August 24th - 2s and 8s
4 sets of 200, 200, 800 with equal distance rest in between
Goal: 200's in 48, 800's in 3:12
Result: 200's avg 46, 800's avg 3:13

Distance is for the birds. 200's are my new favorite. Way less painful.

August 27th - 3 mile tempo run
Goal: Be more consistent than last time.
Result: 7:32.8, 7:32.6, 7:32.5

Consistency, check.

I equally like doing speed workouts on my normal running routes and the track. They finally started rubberizing the tracks where I live (why wasn't this done 20 years ago) but apparently that means they must also fence and lock the tracks. Does that mean I can opt out of the $$$ school taxes I pay? So annoying. When fence hurdling becomes an Olympic sport, you'll see me there.