- toilet issues
- weather (wind, heat especially)
- mental anguish
- painful blisters
- "I'm sick of this *&!$ and want to stop"
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Monday, April 27, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
This morning prior to reading Jenna's blog I was consumed by the normal daily crap - can I fit in a run today? when will I have time to bake that cake for Emma's recital? what about that social services' report, can I fit that in too?
And then BAM!!! Perspective returns. It is amazing how quickly we get back on track with what is important when something horrible happens. Our priorities quickly realign in the face of sadness, death, tragedy and trauma. We remember what is important. And we wonder why we can't live like this every moment of every day, basking in the light of what makes our lives great instead of getting overwhelmed by all of the petty thoughts and details.
This happens in our running, too. We got so obsessed by our pace, our time, how we do in comparison to others, what we're wearing, what gadgets we run with, that we forget the big picture: why we started running in the first place. Maybe it was to get outside and hear the birds. Maybe it was to feel more confident and strong. Maybe it was to feel solid in our own bodies and proud of the slight changes that occur. But it sure as shit wasn't to become tied up in our own heads and egos.
Today I will get out of my head and will live from my heart. I will still shut up and run and not talk myself out of what I know is good for me, but I will run with intention to be a better person and to be present. To see the gifts around me and to love every minute of the precious people in my life. Because we never know. We TRULY never know.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Since I live in Colorado, I am training at 5280 ft., so I'd prefer to go to a lower elevation to take advantage of altitude training. Obviously I want kind of a flattish course (within reason), good weather, something in Sept/Oct/Nov, and a fast course. Is that too much to ask? Right now, without much research, I'm thinking about:
-numbers of people (did it feel crazy crowded)
Seriously, sometimes I wish I were 80 because then I could run a 5:30 marathon and still qualify for Boston.
The single most thing on everyone's mind seems to be fitness, weight and eating. Am I right? I know it's on my mind a lot. Lately I've run into so many people who say things like:
"I want to run, but I can't get motivated."
"I don't have time to run."
"I would run, but I hate it."
"I could NEVER run a marathon."
"I want to exercise but...but...but"
I have said these words myself over the years. What I have found is the more time you put into rationalizing why you're not working out, the more likely you are to ditch it altogether.
I used to hate running. Why? Because I was doing it wrong. I wouldn't work out for a month, then I'd go out and sprint and start cramping and be sick to my stomach. I decided running was "too hard on my body." But guess what? Last year I decided to train for a marathon, and in 16 weeks I went from an occasional runner of three miles to a marathoner. I decided to do it the "right" way and to actually train and to make that a priority.
I know I'm preaching to the choir here. You are all dedicated and disciplined runners. But I'm sure you have times when you don't want to get out there. But you do and that's what distinguishes you from so many people who are stuck in excuseland. Many times I'm not in the mood to exert myself. That's where "shut up and just run" comes in.
Now I want to know:
Monday, April 20, 2009
Sunday, April 19, 2009
I will say that it was an amazing race with scenic views. The good part about going up all the hills was flying down them. I lost my running partner in the beginning and put in my iPod. For some reason the dance mix of "Everybody Dance Now" was doing it for me, so I replayed that one about five times. Funny, I know. You never know what will motivate you. I will say with all those hills we were afforded incredible views:
The climbing was intense to say the least, but I stayed strong the whole way, only feeling pretty fatigued by mile 11. And guess what? The course info said there would be "Hammerhead gel products" which I assumed were gels, so I didn't bring anything to eat. Turns out - no gels, no food, just this stuff called Weed that is the Hammerhead sports drink. It was so watered down, it was pathetic. So that probably killed me stomach, having nothing in it but the banana and peanut butter sandwich I ate at 7:00 a.m. Note to self: bring own gels regardless of what is promised.
All was going well or so it seemed until...I had MAJOR toilet issues. Only didn't make it to the toilet, I'm sorry to say. At the risk of being too graphic and giving too much info (which we runners tend to do on occasion) I had quite a load by the time I got the finish line. It was just plain GROSS. I said "hi" the fam, then immediately headed to the porta potties and did the best I could do to clean up which meant throwing away part of my outfit. Don't know WHY I didn't ask Ken to bring me a change of clothes. Note to self: ALWAYS bring change of clothes for the end. You are obviously not potty trained.
Anyway...all of it was worth it as I did the race in 1:52 and I was totally psyched about that. Pace of 8:32!!
Me At the Finish - Can't Even See the Load!
So now I am nursing a still-upset-stomach. Weird cause I had NONE of that during my full marathon. You just never know what will come your way during a race. And guess what, that stomach kept even me, lover of all beer, to decline my drink at the end!! I did lay on my bed all afternoon watching "Nights in Rodanthe." Thought I had earned that one.
Friday, April 17, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Today, however, I learned of a new yoga benefit. We were doing a pose - the layman's term is "hurdler" - it kind of looks like this (no this is not me unfortunately).
The main point is that you are holding your weight and splitting your legs. The girl who was next to me (Pam) is a dancer and she is disgustingly flexible. So she was doing this pose to it's utmost potential, really showing me up, when the teacher yelled out: "Hey look at Pam! She's getting a free episiotomy today!" Now if you haven't had kids and haven't had the pleasure of the episiotomy experience, feel free to check out the link. I don't think I'll go into the gorey details on this blog, if you know what I mean.
Changing subjects even though I know you love the episiotomy talk...today I got some samples from Stoneyfield Farm - their Greek Oikos yogurt - to try and to review on this blog. At the risk of sounding pretty cool, I think I am the best person to try and review this yogurt, because I lived in Greece for four years, and Greek yogurt was a staple in my diet. But more on that and my Greek adventures if you tune in next time...
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Not that it has anything to do with running, but here's the coconut cake I made for Easter. I wasn't lying when I said I'd been eating cake. This was one of three cakes I made this weekend. Maybe I should open a bakery and give up running.
Back to running - I think this upcoming half is a pretty low key race as I asked to have my race packet sent to my home, fully expecting the usual coupons, shoe chip, maps, samples, etc. Nope. Inside the envelope: race shirt and bib. Keeping it simple. It does end, however, at the New Belgium Brewery in Ft. Collins, CO. Who said 10:30 a.m. is too early for a beer?
One tip I've read about running long races is that you should have a mantra - something you continue to go back to, something you repeat to yourself to give you strength when things get really tough. Do you have one?
When I ran in Phoenix, I didn't have one up until the morning of the race. I was leaving the hotel early for the race, the kids were still sleeping and in his sleepiness, my 11 year old son said, "Just remember mom, run with your heart." "Run with your heart" became my mantra for the day. I returned to it again and again when my body felt physically so fatigued I wanted to stop. It reminded me to go inside and to dig deep, beyond the confines of my body.
BTW, I just got this award from Healthy on the Run. Here's the desciption:
Sunday, April 12, 2009
I needed to get in 13 miles yesterday in prep for my intense half marathon next weekend. My running partner, Erin, couldn't go, so I put it on there on the almighty Facebook that I wanted someone to run the Boulder Backroads 1/2 Marathon course with me early Saturday a.m. My son's third grade teacher, Liz, who also happens to be a two-time ironman (woman), wanted to come along. SCORE!
Saturday a.m. came to early. Being Emma's birthday the night before I had one of Ken's strong margaritas, some wine and too much crap to eat. It was 30 degrees and cloudy. Plus, I was kind of intimidated to run with Liz. She is twenty years younger than me. She has completed two ironmans and countless other races. Ken said she'd "kick my ass." Not that this is a competition or anything.
Surprisingly, the miles flew by as we talked and talked. I found out that Liz is not interested in going super fast, but more interested in endurance and being able to go long distances and feeling good. I think that girl could go forever. I stopped at the halfway mark to stretch and have a gel. Liz had nothing and was ready to keep going, keep up the momentum.
Thinking about it, my approach to running is kind of similar. I'd like to become faster, but I also want to be able to go long, for hours at a time and not break down. I remember in my marathon that so many people started out really fast, and petered around mile 18 or 20. I started out pretty slow, and gained momentum as I went. I ended up with a negative split. The people who passed me at mile 2, were being passed by me at mile 21. I'm not that fast, but I think I can endure the distance pretty well.
Did you read Runner's World this month about the "magic mile" and finding your perfect pace? As I'm hoping to qualify for Boston this year, I loved this. Here it is:
- Run one mile hard with an easy couple laps for warm up.
- Don't run all out; just push a little faster than you normally do.
- Record your time.
- Use your time as a benchmark to determine what pace is appropriate for your current fitness level on your daily runs.
- Use your "magic mile" time to set realist goals for different distances.
- Add 33 seconds to your mile time to determine a pace for a 5K
- Multiply your mile time by 1.15 for a 10K
- Multiply your mile time by 1.2 for a half-marathon
- Multiply your mile time by 1.3 to predict your marathon potential
I need to run a 3:50 marathon to BQ. That means cutting 13 minutes off of my time. I am going to start my training soon. Any recommendations on a plan to use? I have found some intermediate training plans on line:
- Runners World
- Hal Higdon
- Sports Fitness Advisor
- Cool Running
Hal's is an 18 week training plan with you doing one 18 miler and two 20 milers. Cross training is thrown in one day per week along with one rest day. Runner's World is a 16 week plan with two rest days, goal pace intervals, one 18 miler, one 19 miler and one 20 milers. Sports Fitness has you training for 18 weeks with two rest days per week, two 20 milers and one 18 miler; Lastly, Cool Running is a 20 week program with one rest day per week, speed days, 3-10K races, one 20 miler, one 22 miler and one 26 miler! This last one seems like the toughest. Has anyone tried this?
Friday, April 10, 2009
- Take up yoga for relaxation, strength building, sculpting, balance and healthy ageing
- Anytime you work out, end the workout with 100 sit ups - preferably crunches, bicycle and my favorite - laying flat on your back, arms extended over year head, legs stretched out in front, bring your knees up to your chest while simultaneously bringing our arms down to meet your knees.
- Back in the days when I was struggled with my weight (in and after college) I found a book called "Break Free from Compulsive Eating." The message of this book was simple and one I have carried with me ever since: listen to your body. Food is not bad, food is good and food is fuel. If your body is hungry, decipher what it wants and feed it. DO NOT eat if your body is not hungry. Feel what it feels like to be full and satisfied. Just because it is lunch time does not mean you have to eat if you are not hungry. Listen to your body, this is the best way to detect what your body needs. Also trust your body to be honest with you. It may crave some kind of junk food, but it will soon want something healthy. Just listen and get in touch. This book was paramount in teaching me how to know myself better and the pounds started to disappear.
- Be proud of your body regardless of the flaws you see. I have always been self conscious about my legs. They are muscular and I think they look like tree trunks. I have come to accept that these are the legs I will always have and am starting to appreciate that they are strong and capable even if they don't look the way I would like.
- Always have a fitness goal be it a race, a class you attend, anything. This keeps you motivated and on track. The more you work out, are in touch with your body and realize how food and drink can help or hurt your workouts, the more you will pay attention to eating well and listening to your body.
- These days I have a very healthy view of eating a good body image. Sure I eat crap sometimes and I probably drink more than I should. But I also eat very well in terms of balanced and healthful meals. All of our meals are home cooked by me. We don't do anything from cans or boxes and all fruits and veggies are fresh, not frozen. I buy organic stuff when I think it's warranted (strawberries, apples, the stuff that has the highest levels). It truly is all about moderation, exercise and eating only when hungry.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
The rules are: 1.) fill it out 2.) change one question with one of your own 3.) add an additional question 4.) then send it to 3 people.
1. What are your current obsessions? Obsession is kind of strong word, but if you mean the things I'm sort of hooked on, that would be running, blogging, Biggest Loser, the book "The Coldest Winter Ever," coffee (my latest craze/splurge is a grande Starbucks latte, no frills), trying to discover a career path, chardonnay (Kendall Jackson is a fave), planning my next big girls' escape to Vegas.
2. Which item from your closet are you wearing most often? I'd have to say my cropped running tights. Still to cold for shorts, too warm for full on tights.
3. Last thing you bought for myself? Tampons at a store in Mexico. Seriously. I had toxic shock syndrome and am not supposed to wear them, so I never have any with me. We were getting ready to swim with the dolphins when the need for a tampon became apparent. I didn't know if dolphins were like bears and would be attracted to "the visitor" so I started asking (in sign language since I don't speak Spanish; you can imagine my gestures) where I could buy tampons. Finally found some. Only $5 for ten. What a rip off! Remind me to start a tampon export business. There is good money in this apparently.
4. What’s for dinner? Easy Meatless Manicotti. Cooking Light recipe.
5. Say something to the person who tagged you: No one tagged me. I'm a loser. I'm just doing this on my own volition.
6. What is one item you could not live without? Item, as in something material, not a person? I'd prefer to not live without good books, my coffee maker, my pillow, Tivo and an assortment of other things, but if push came to shove I could do it as long as I had family and friends.
7. Vacation spots you must visit before you die? Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. Morocco. Easter Islands. Greece again and again.
8. Three things to do before you die: See my kids marry and meet my grand kids; skydive; celebrate 50 years with my husband.
9. What’s your guilty pleasure? Too personal.
10. What’s your favourite smell? Lillies.
11. Best thing you ate or drank lately? Coconut ice cream in Mexico. Creamy coconut ice cream with big flakes of coconut in a sugar cone.
12. Care to share some wisdom? "To thine own self be true." You can never go wrong with that one.
13. My added question: What do you do to avoid doing the things you should be doing? Blogging, checking emails, talking on the phone, laying on the floor with the dog.
14. Talk about one regret in your life? Not following through with the Peace Corps. I got in and was supposed to go to West Africa (Mali) but fell in love and didn't want to leave the man who is now my husband. I never would give Ken up, but think I could have gone away for two years and he would have still been here. Essentially could have had my cake and eaten it too.
15. What do you have an addiction to? Is this different from obsession question #1? My answers are likely the same. The computer and wine are probably my most basic addictions.
I'm asking anyone and everyone to complete this. Just for fun if you want.
Saturday, April 4, 2009
I am kind of getting my groove back. Managed to run today, do weights and sit ups. Felt good to sweat.
I had a reality check yesterday. Have you seen this cover?
So my 11 year old son sees it laying on the table. Says, "What? She is 48 years old? No offense or anything, mom, but she looks much younger than you." WTF? We then proceeded to have a talk about photoshopping. But I did have to admit that even with some serious photoshopping I would never look like VB, even at 42 years old.
Just made a huge pot of minestrone soup with tons of fresh veggies. It's the best recipe ever and the key is red wine. I'm going to get me some now.
Friday, April 3, 2009
Me and Em with the weird frog