Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Marlene found the perfect place for her sticker:

Why do people connect me with toilets?

Dumb question of the year.

Sniff. It makes me proud. At least whoever is on that toilet will have their back to me when they’re going #2.


Dr. Oz Would Be Proud

I’ll tell you ten things I loved about today:

  1. Your insightful, candid and forthcoming comments on my last post. You guys continue to amaze me everyday with your honesty and support. I am fascinated by the influence our mothers have on how we view food. And, I am sorry that some of you continue to struggle.
  2. I took a  nice dump this morning. The shape of a C. Just like Dr. Oz said it should be. I’ll spare you the picture.
  3. No hip pain, even after 45 minutes of water running.
  4. An older lady in the locker room at the pool said, “Are you Beth? I love your blog!” She even joined the pussy posse class today. Hi to Nancy if you’re reading.
  5. When the water aerobics class started, I tried to go in the lap lane to stay out of the way. The ladies all said, “No, you can stay in here with us.” I feel I am one of the gang. No grey pubes yet, though.
  6. Emma made a Christmas stocking for Betty Sue, our guinea pig, on Grandma’s sewing machine. She stuck a candy cane in it. P1080400
  7. The Starbucks lady gave me a sample of the eggnog latte. Yum. Needed rum, though.
  8. Gene sent me this picture:gene
  9. I scored an interview with some place really cool. More info coming.
  10. A day at home to be alone and to WRITE. Coffee and dog by my side.

What have you loved about your day?

All cleaned out,


Go HERE  for stickers.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Our Relationship with Food

This is no food blog. I love to cook and eating can be fun, but no one needs to see every morsel I put in my mouth. It’s just not that exciting.

Food is a complicated thing. A substance that is meant to fuel us and to be enjoyable has become an enemy to many, especially women.

“Losing weight has become our national obsession, our holy grail. The cultural assumption seems to be that there’s something wrong with wanting to eat. Appetite is something to be fended off, with willpower or chemically. We're locked in a war with our own hunger, which is the primal force that sustains us. We’re socialized to fear our appetites, whether they’re for food or sex or power. We’re taught from birth to make ourselves small and dainty, to not take up room.” (Harriett Brown, Brave Girl Eating).

It is fascinating to consider how far away we’ve gotten from the true meaning of food. Everything is labeled good or bad, this will make me fat or it won’t.

I’ll admit it, I’ve gotten lucky in the genes department. The women in my family are all pretty small, naturally. That said, at 5 ‘ 5” I once weighed 30 pounds more than I do now, so there was a time when I struggled with my body image. Throughout that process I shifted my thinking about food. I began to see it as a positive thing to be enjoyed within reason. A fuel source that allowed me to feel good and to be fit. I don’t diet. Never have. Hopefully never will. Weight fluctuates with the seasons, with activity levels, with life’s ups and downs. This fluctuation is natural.

As you know, I’ve got a nine year old daughter. I worry about her vulnerability to an eating disorder as she gets older. At home we never speak of weight, calories, getting on a scale. We talk instead of balance and feeling good in your own skin. No food is off limits, in moderation. I have tried to protect her from the world of negative body images and constant comparison between herself at some ridiculous “ideal.” She sees me enjoy food. She sees me eat reasonably. She sees me take care of my body by fueling it and letting it move and be strong.

But, we can only do so much. She is growing up in a world where the majority girls think they are fat and restrict their eating from an early age. Her friends and the media will likely do a number on her at some point.

I had a gymnastics' coach in 7th grade who made us get on a scale. She stated our weights out loud and let us know if we needed to lose a few. At age 13, I was 112 pounds. She said I needed to lose 2 pounds to be a better gymnast. Until then it had never occurred to me to criticize my weight. The seed had been planted. Like I said, the messages of “you are not good enough because you weigh too much” are widespread. The sad thing is, the scale gets to determine how we feel about ourselves, if we let it.

Even now, there was a comment left on this very post stating, “I know a few people who think your broken bone was due to malnutrition from an eating disorder.”

First of all, it wasn’t a broken bone, it was a stress fracture/reaction. Two different things. Secondly, those “few” people need to find another hobby instead of speculating about my weight and lifestyle. If you spend anytime here at all you know how much I espouse a life of balance and healthy mind, body and spirit. I live it and breathe it. I live honestly and out loud. So, don’t throw that eating disorder crap my way.

I recently read Brave Girl Eating. It’s about a family’s struggle with anorexia as their 14 year daughter becomes more and more sick. Fascinating with much insight into our culture’s obsession with being thin. Too thin.

I don’t know what the answer is. I am going to start coaching for a Girl’s on the Run Program which helps elementary and middle school girls build self esteem through running and feeling confident in their bodies. It is a small thing, but can have a big impact.

Do you struggle with your own eating/weight gain/relationship with food? How does running play a part for you? Does it make you feel better about yourself, or is it merely a means of burning more calories? If you feel comfortable sharing, have you struggled with an eating disorder? How do you hope to help your own sons and daughters develop a healthy body image and relationship with food?*

I’m enough – we all are,


*And thanks in advance for being so open about a private and tough subject.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dreadlocks and Butt Cracks

I loved the Michael Franti and Spearhead show. They have great energy, not to mention a feel-good mission of spreading hope, peace and equality.

Boulder embraces this sort of positivity. Everyone should love one another and recycle and eat organic and all would be well with the world. While I’m a fan of all of it, I find it ironic that these are the very same people who will run your ass over or call you a douche if you get in their way. Some woman nearly took me out trying to get her son closer to the stage. Where’s the peace, love and harmony then?

Shopping at Whole Foods is always this way for me too. Shoppers flock to the store to buy healthy food and to love the planet and their fellow man.  Yet, I can’t tell you how many times people have stolen my cart right out from under me or cut in front of me in line just to buy their wheatgrass first.

Back to Michael Franti, or “MF” as I like to call him. Pre-show he was lingering around the event center floor, saying “hi” to all the breast feeding mamas and their babies (when the teat was out of their mouths). This was a matinee show and therefore very family friendly. The slings and Baby Bjorns were out in full force. MF strutted around much like he was taking a leisurely walk on the beach – barefooted with dreadlocks gracefully flowing behind him. I managed to get pretty close to MF, even though he didn’t realize it. Yes, I’m wearing my “I run for wine” shirt. Because I do (water) run for wine. Here I am pinching MF’s ass:


You can tell he likes it:


Here’s where I’m copping a feel from behind. He had to take a moment to pause for that one:


Being so close to MF, I realized that the dreadlocks smelled kind of like dirt. Emma said, “I saw his butt crack!” And she did. He had been sitting on the floor talking to a baby and got up. His little sweat pants got tugged down a bit, thereby revealing the crack. No shoes, no underwear. No deodorant too. Au naturel the whole way.

If you haven’t seen MF in concert, you should. As Ken commented, “He really likes jumping!” Every song required the audience to jump up and down and wave hands in the air. I tried not to jump on the bad hip. At one point I was holding Emma on my good hip (c’mon she’s only 9 and weighs a mere 70 lbs.) and trying to jump. I don’t think my doctor would have approved.

I went to the concert knowing MF’s bigger hits (“Sound of Sunshine” and “Say Hey”), but I left loving several more of his songs, including “Hey, Hey, Hey” and “I Got Love For You”.

I am a total sucker for tunes with upbeat, positive and loving lyrics. The dude puts on a great show and you pretty much smile the whole time. And, they didn’t even sell alcohol, so you can’t blame my smiling face on the beer.

Despite yesterday’s jumping, the hip is feeling pretty good today. I took another day off from water running, but will resume tomorrow to see how it feels. I got a bit discouraged with this slight setback, but am keeping my eye on the prize.

Running: January 1st, 2011
Boston Marathon: April 18, 2011

"Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it." ~Michael Jordan~

Climbing that wall,


Saturday, November 27, 2010

13’s Not What It Used To Be

Fall down seven times, get up eight – Japanese Proverb

I’m laying low. Staying off the hip. Heating pad, hot baths. As much as I dislike the water running adventures, they have kept me sane and on the move towards recovery and sustained fitness. If I wake tomorrow with no pain, I will resume my daily ritual in the water. Tomorrow is Sunday, so the pussy posse ladies will be absent, forgoing the wet for the church pews or the Denver Post and coffee. Or wild sex. Who knows what those gals do when they’re not water aerobicizing.

If all goes as planned, “real” or “land” running should resume for me on January 1st. What a positive and energetic way to start off the new year.

Yesterday Sam had his 13 year old physical.  I quickly learned that turning 13 launches you into a new era at the pediatrician’s office. First, the questionnaire. In year's past, Sam has answered questions like, “What happens when you get in trouble?”, “What do you spend your money on?”, “Do you have any questions about your body?”

The 13 and up questionnaire is a bit different. Sam and I sat waiting for the doctor, laughing our heads off. “Do you know how to put on a condom?”,“Do you use meth, crack or marijuana?” And, my personal favorite, “Have you fathered a child?”

OK. I’m no prude if you haven’t noticed. We’re pretty open around here about things, but really? Shouldn’t here be a 13-14 year old questionnaire that’s a bit tamer? Maybe ask some questions about cigarettes, pimples, heavy petting and getting to second base?

Then, at 15, maybe you could jump to the other stuff.

Fathered a child? Don’t get me wrong. I know there are *gulp* 13 year old fathers out there somewhere, but I'm pretty confident it’s not the norm.

As far as the condom thing goes, Sam knows what one is, but it’s not like we sit around playing put the condom on the banana. They haven’t even covered that yet in sex ed.

I get it, I get it. Basically this questionnaire screams at parents: “Wake up! We’re living in a different world now!” A world where discussions of sex and drugs need to happen sooner than later. I try to remember that my kids probably know more than I think they do. Heading off the issues before they become full blown problems is probably not a bad idea.

Oh and I left the room for the physical part of the exam. Sam came out smiling.

Regardless of the heavy stuff, he’ll always be my little boy.

Off to see Michael Franti and Spearhead with the family. You can’t NOT feel good when you hear this song.


PS: Check out the “shop” tab at the top of the page for stickers.suaroval4x6

Friday, November 26, 2010

It Got Messy in the Back Seat

I drove by this sign in front of  local church several times last week on my way to the pool. Each time I thought, “What is wrong with these church going folk? Can’t they spell?”


Sometimes I’m kind of dense that way.

Then there was the sweet potato casserole that slid all over the seat as we went over the river and through the woods to Aunt Jen’s house:




I might have said a few choice words beginning with F and ending with K.  You know – fartlek and Frank.

No, I did not scoop it up and put it back in the dish. But, Ken told everyone I did, so when I asked Emma to eat her sweet potatoes at dinner, she said, “OK. I’ll take one more bite of the car seat, mom.

Overall – great day of appletinis, brie en croute, spanikopita, grilled turkey, mashed potatoes with smoked gouda and Grandma Ball’s stuffing (which does not have balls in it). And car seat casserole.

That said, I’m going to throw that thankful shit out the window for a minute. Bear with me.

My hip hurts. Again. Sharp pain at the site of the fracture when I walk. I have been walking pain-free for weeks now, so no clue what is up with that. The only thing I have done differently: today my water running was 47 minutes of steady running vs. my usual 40 minutes of intervals. Maybe that stressed the already stressed stress fracture.

Let me say something about steady water running  for 47 minutes. This is by far the hardest mental workout I've done to date in the pool. Even when I was a baby and my mom threw me in the deep end to sink or swim.

47 minutes of running circles in the deep end.  So much tougher than intervals, because you have nothing to break up the time. I had to close my eyes and visualize some of my favorite running routes try to block out the smell of chlorine and the echoey walls of the pool. Dissociation was my friend. And, it actually worked. Again, the mind is a very powerful thing.

I’m pissed about the pain. I have been following the rules. I have been a good girl. Yet, this is a setback. I suppose those are to be expected. My thinking tends to be very all or nothing. When I get discouraged it’s hard for me to see it as temporary. I go to the worst case scenario. Being able to work out every day has saved my sanity. I hate that I might have to pull back.

I have gone back to the dreaded one-crutch. At least for today. Maybe staying off of it and not working out for a couple of days will be the ticket.

To top it off, my inbox has been filled with junk emails selling hip replacements. Not funny. Guess it’s better than penile dysfunction or something.

Going to see Michael Franti tomorrow. That makes me happy. Maybe he will see the crutch and single me out to dance with him on the stage, crutch style.

A cyber friend, David, sent me this video. It’s a good reminder that we usually have setbacks and failures and challenges before we have successes. It contains one of the best quotes ever: “If you’ve never failed, you’ve never lived.” Take 1:17 to watch it. And take some inspiration from it. I did.


PS: If you emailed me for a sticker and have not yet gotten it, let me know. I sent them all out, or so I thought, but might have missed someone.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

On Being Thankful

Sheesh!! That camel toe business was fun.

Look at this picture Shawn (Chasing Immortality One Mile at a Time) sent me all the way from Canada. Those Canadians are thinking, what the hell is a sewer, eh?.


Where’s your sticker? Send me a picture and I’ll post it.

You guys really came through! Thanks for all of the great song suggestions. You might want to buy stock in iTunes because I’m going to be spending a small fortune over there.

Gratitude. Giving. Being Thankful.

Okay. I’m crude. Offensive even. But, I do have a heart and I feel things very deeply. So much so that I tear up several times a day as I realize the gifts I’ve been given. And I don’t mean the gift of pooping. I’m on the rag today, so this post might be kind of emotional. I’ll try to throw in a f-bomb or erection reference every now and again to keep it balanced.


Not a day goes by when I don’t count my blessings. I have never before in my life had so much to lose. And, so much to cherish.

These guys. My body might have held them for nine months, but they are very much their own people. Watching them become more of who they are is an honor:

Copy of Copy of P1060074

Ken who is always there. Who will always be there. My rock. The love of my life.


Hood to Coast Relay 2009:


My parents. My dad – funny (if you think I’m funny, you should meet me dad), caring, thoughtful. My mom – loving, considerate, strong. We’ve had some scares with my dad – heart attacks, lung disease. But, he’s still here and healthy and I don’t take that for granted.



My girlfriends (you know who you are). My brother and his family. My in laws. My sister in law and her family. My aunts and uncles. My grandfather. My dog. My neighbors. You all.


I am almost 44 years old and I have never had a devastating loss in my life (Dogs, yes. People, no). I know it is coming. I am terrified of the grief. I am terrified of the unknown.

I can’t live in a place of fear about the future. So, I live in a place of gratitude about the present.


Sunrises. Hot coffee. Views of the Rockies from my window. A good book, a warm blanket and  a cup of tea in the afternoon. Spell check.  Christmas music. Scented candles. Hot baths. Advent calendars with chocolate. Compliments. Crock pots. Kindness of strangers. Running (not in the water). Potty talk. Things to look forward to. Falling snow. Flash mobs. Grandma Ball’s stuffing.

You value what you notice. I try to notice the little stuff every day.


Thanksgiving reminds us to give thanks. It is a reminder of something we should do all day every day.

What are you grateful for today?

My heart swells,


And, if you haven’t watched this bit of holiday spirit, you should. This is all about unity and togetherness.  Reminding us we are much more alike than different. (My wish for myself is to one day be part of a flash mob. We should do a blogger one in Boston. I’m not kidding. Who’s in?):

A Camel’s What?


It happens to the best of us. Especially those female  athletic types who are partial to clingy, tight clothing with spandex and lycra. Not that I would know.

But, now there’s a solution:

And, for those who wish they had some, you can always try this (I like the cougar option because I’m 43):



Keeping your attention,


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

When You Fall, Get Up.

My taste in music is vast. Yes, vast. Not varied or big or luscious. Vast. Doesn’t that make me sound like an intellectual? Well, I’m not, and never will be, but I use words like “vast” and “insurmountable” to fake it. 

AC/DC to Florida to the Ramones to Matt and Kim. Anything with a beat that I can run to.

Lately I’ve been loving this song (video below). It smacks of strength, moving forward, hope, inspiration. All things I need to hold onto right now. And always.

You're a good soldier
Choosing your battles
Pick yourself up
And dust yourself off
And back in the saddle
But you've got it all
Believe it
When you fall get up
Oh oh...
And if you fall get up
Oh oh...

It’s one of the themes from this summer’s World Cup. I think you’ll like it too.

Please, my friends. I need your help.

Not to belabor the point, but water running is killing me. Not physically, but mentally. Getting in that pool everyday and pretend running for upwards of 45 minutes sucks the big one. Yes, that one.

Please. Give me your most  favorite song on your iPod. Your best running song.

Every last one of you. I need new ideas. More than ever.

Or, if you have a favorite podcast, give that to me too.

I’ve got to get through this transition time and period of recovery. Hopefully only 38 more days until running and I begin our love affair once again.Only this time I’m not putting out so early.

Trying to stay up,


Hauling Ass, Taking Names

My healing is coming along nicely, thanks for asking.  No more crutches. No more crying. Minimal pain. I am working out almost everyday trying to not lose every molecule of fitness I gained over the summer while training.  I don’t know if I’m making progress or not. But at least I am moving and not rolling around in an office chair from room to room.

Thanksgiving week is here and I’m not using that as an excuse to stuff my face and watch Matt Lauer drool over the giant Sponge Bob balloon flying over Manhattan. I will try to do something everyday be it water running, cycling or yoga.


If you are having trouble getting motivated, just think of me. At the risk of sounding bossy, if I can work out with a fractured hip you can probably go out for that run. If you want to. Or even if you don’t. Don’t overthink it. Just go. Go because I can’t.

So many days the last thing I want to do is get in a pool and pretend to run for 40 minutes while wearing a blue marshmallow thing around my waist and bobbing around like a dork. But I do it.

Last week’s schedule

Mon: Water running.  2 sets of 6 x 1:30 intervals.  Workout = 36 minutes
Tues: Water running – 7 x 2:30 intervals. Swam 24 lengths. Total workout = 60 minutes
Wed: Stationary bike. 30 minutes. 10. 5 miles. 100 crunches, 50 leg presses, 50 hamstring curls
Thurs: Water running – Ladder workout. Workout = 32 min
Friday: Water running – 5 x 5 minute intervals. Workout = 40 min
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Stationary bike. 40 minutes. 14 miles. 100 crunches. 30 pushups. 50 leg presses. 50 hamstring curls. 90 minute massage. Heaven.

Yeah, that’s right. I’m up to 40 minutes of running in the pool. By the end of this nightmare I will actually be running for 78 minutes in the deep end. 78 eff’ing minutes.

The local jail better send out the suicide watch for that workout.

Although I try to get to the pool so I can be done about the time the water aerobics ladies are wiggling in, this is becoming an impossibility because my workouts are getting longer. Last week, the pussy posse showed up and I had ten minutes left. I tried to go with the flow of the class. This involved smiling really pretty and making light conversation (where did you get that swim cap with the fake gardenia on it? I must have one!) as I tried to move in a circle with the group to the tune of “Shake, Rattle and Roll.”

On this day, however, there was a new instructor.  She thought I was there for the class. We moved in our  circle, then she yelled, “Now, ladies, move backwards!” I did not want to move backwards because this messed up my workout (I could have done it, but I get very anal and don’t like to mess with my workouts). So, as a compromise and a means of continuing to move with the flow, I turned around and kept running, keeping with the gals who were moving backwards. The instructor yelled, “NO! DON”T TURN AROUND. GO BACKWARDS!” drawing mucho attention to me. At which point I gently let her know I was doing my own thing as I called it (btw, the pool people said I could be in there during the class so I wasn’t breaking any rules. I don’t like breaking rules, at least not publicly). 

So, lay off bossy water aerobics instructor girl. I don’t even like water aerobics.  I’m training for a freaking marathon in here in case you didn’t notice. I’m hauling ass and taking names in the deep end.  Gertrude, Ethel, Mable!

Having an attitude about being bossed around,


PS: If you haven’t yet gotten your sticker, it’s on the way. I had to order more, then addressed all the envelopes, found out they were the wrong size, cried and had a meltdown, got more envelopes, and with Ken’s help they will be out the door tomorrow!! Then I’ll owe him something, but it will be worth it.

Monday, November 22, 2010

$5 Cold Showers

I was thinking about Haikus today. Those 17 syllable forms of Asian poetry. I had 100 miles to drive for work (no, I’m not a long haul trucker, but that would be cool. I’ve always wanted to sleep in the cab and have those sexy girl mud flaps), so I came up with some ditties while on the road.  

Caressing my breast
   She did it oh so quickly
           I’m in airport security again

It felt like a fart
    No porta potty needed
          Time to change my shorts

Long haul truck drivers
     Starved for sleep and affection
              $5 buck cold showers

What’s your best haiku? The structure is 5 syllables – 7 syllables – 5 syllables. No subject is off limits.       

Getting creative due to boredom,


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Mooning the Camera and Other Memories

Inappropriate 13 year old comment of the day:

Sam: Guess what I’m gonna do sometime?

Me (thinking he’s probably going to say, ‘win the Nobel Peace Prize’ or finally ‘find those weapons of mass destruction'): What?

Sam: I’m going to go to Jackson Hole, Wyoming and in the middle of the night I’m gonna cover up the ‘Jackson’ on the sign and replace it with ‘butt’.

Me (tearing up): I am so proud right now.

Childhood is a funny thing. We forget a lot. My brother will say, “Remember when I came into your room and found you rolling around in your crib with your poop?” No, I tell him. I don't remember that at all. Which is funny because it was just week ago. Ba-da-boom! Actually, that might have been one those memories that got blocked. Thank God we have our siblings to remind us of the good old days.

That’s when I tell him my memory of when we used to take baths together and what he would do with the shampoo cap. Right back at ya, Dave.

I tend to remember stuff from those early days when it was attached to a deep emotion: sadness, fear, excitement, joy, anticipation, anger. Sometimes stuff happened that was really bad, but as a child, you didn’t realize the extent of how bad it was. In hindsight, I now know that some of my friends were being abused in awful ways. As a kid you just don’t know what it all means.

9 years old
: I spent the night at Tracy’s house. In the middle of the night we heard yelling, screaming, things being thrown. I was afraid. My parents didn’t fight much, but when they did it was controlled and private. Minutes later, Tracy’s  dad (who I always feared. He was 6’5” and loud and mean) came in and yanked her out of bed. He pushed her into the living room and told her to pick who was right in the argument, mom or dad. I remember her crying and refusing to choose (smart girl, Tracy). I was scared shitless. All.night.long. I never went to her house again. Except when her dad was gone.

9-11 years old
: The “gang” from the neighborhood, a group of multi-aged kids from several streets nearby, joined up every summer night for rousing games of Ghost in the Graveyard and Capture the Flag. No shoes. Fireflies. Ice cream man. Falling into bed with grass stains on my knees and dirt under my nails. Perfection.

14 years old: Our dogs went missing. It wasn’t like Maggi, a lab mix, to stray from our house. It was early morning and I had to catch the bus for school. I called for her. I searched. I found her dead in a ditch. I laid on the ground and sobbed. I missed school.  She had been poisoned by the Greek police who put down poison pellets that looked and smelled like dog food to kill off the strays in the area. That night, our poodle, Bulles (pronounced bull.ees. Means “mamma’s boy” in Greek), was on a walk with my dad. He picked up something in his mouth and within minutes was frothing at the mouth. We watched him die.

8 years old
: Grandma and Grandpa would drive to Maryland from Ohio every fall. They stopped at a bakery along the way and bought the most delicious pastries – cheese, cherry, apple. We never got pastries in our house, especially not for breakfast. My parents favored dry, home made granola bars, unsweetened Cheerios and fruit leather. Pastries were like crack to me.

10 years old
: I sat on my front porch coloring. We lived on a cul de sac. I noticed a dude on a motorcycle circling the street. Finally, he stopped in front of my house and started touching himself. Ewww. I was old enough to know this wasn’t right. I ran inside, he rode away. My dad and I jumped in the car to find him, but never did.


Getting on the recent blog bandwagon of posting childhood pictures (Emz, Marlene, Q on the Move),  I have a few to share:

I did pushups at an early age. How else did you think I got those abs?:


I was always up for a party:


Some brotherly love. This is when we lived in Chicago. He embarrassed me so much with that talk of pooping in my crib, I had to hide my eyes:


Third grade. The age of denim jumpers, braids and middle parted hair. That turtleneck needed a necklace or something.


I pushed the limits from an early age. My poor friend. I made her do it. You can tell I’m really into it because I’m posing for the camera like, oh yeah, check it out. What was wrong with me? You may be wondering why I blocked it out. My body hasn’t changed tremendously since that time. It hit too close to home. And, in the interest of protecting my friend…I blocked hers out too. Butt…you get the idea.


First boyfriend, Casey. 5th grade. He was really into me. You can tell by the way he crosses his arms, rolls his tongue on the inside of his cheek (you know what that means). I only went for the guys who pressed their jeans. At least I had the “Farrah” hair going for me.


My modeling days. Short lived.


7th grade. I’m in the yellow dress. The other blond haired girl is Lisa, my best friend. We lost touch when she moved back to the USA from Greece that year. A few months ago she found me on Facebook. She is a runner. She will be running in Boston in 2011, too. Time for a 7th grade reunion at the start line. I might wear the dress so she’ll recognize me. I love social media.


Also 7th grade. I used to love that striped shirt. I also love the “duh” expression I’m making with my mouth. I needed a serious makeover. And braces. Feel free to show this to your awkward teenagers so they know there is hope.


This is fun. Exposing embarrassing pictures of yourself and taking a walk down memory lane.



Thursday, November 18, 2010

Getting Wet (video) and Tips for Water Running

As I’ve bored you with for the past two weeks, I’m water running. Almost.every.stinking.day. I only do this because I have a hip stress fracture and cannot run for real.  This has opened up a whole new world of flotation belts, iPods clipped to visors, geriatric friends, peeing in the pool and shaving the pubes daily. 

It’s only fair that I capture the experience for you live. The video does not disappoint. It’s just like you were there with me.

Today, after the water aerobic ladies (AKA “pussy posse”) vacated the deep end, we shot our footage. The adventure started at my house.

Indulge me. (And a special music treat for all those running in Philly).

Believe me, if you do intervals for 40-60 minutes and your form is right, it’s a GREAT workout.  And…someone asked why I wear the hat. Usually I clip my iPod to it.

Food for thought:

  • Cardiovascular fitness decreases measurably after 2-3 weeks without training
  • You don’t have to be injured to do it. It can be used as an alternative workout for anyone who wants to add mileage without adding the impact or stress of running on land. It can also serve as a backup plan on those cold, nasty days when you don't want to go outside or are tired of the treadmill
  • You’ll burn about 500-600 cals/hour, depending on your exertion level, weight, etc.
  • Heart rate will always be 10% lower in the water. 160 bpm in water = 176 bpm on land.
  • Water should be deep enough that you cannot touch the bottom of the pool.
  • Runners tend to have more lean body mass than swimmers, making them less buoyant so a flotation device is usually needed. If a flotation device is not worn, body position can become compromised and an undue emphasis is placed on the muscles of the upper body and arms to keep the body afloat
  • Form should be upright, slight tilt at the  hip, legs come up about 75 degree angle to hip then pull down to an almost full extension down and behind you. High knees pushing forward (not up) through the water using your HIPS
  • Tops of the shoulders, the neck, and the head should be above the surface of the water
  • Head is centered, there is a slight lean forward at the waist, and the chest is “proud,” or expanded, with the shoulders pulled back, not rotated forward. Elbows are bent at 90 degrees, and movement of the arms is driven by the shoulders (source).
  • When you are doing things properly you should feel that you are running hard uphill. If your legs are not screaming for mercy during hard efforts then you are either doing something incorrect or just not pushing hard enough!!
  • Fun fact:  Olympic runner, Mary Decker Slaney set a world record at 2,000 meters after a month in the pool and only one  fast track workout prior to that race.

Never going to get an Oscar,


Compromising Positions

For all of us girl suckers who just want to be adored and taken care of by our man, Jason’s comment on yesterday’s post will get you all in a tizzy. He said,

“What occurred to me today is that no matter how bad a day I have had, my wife may have had it worse so I need to be on my best behavior when she gets home and make it comfortable for her.”

Is it just me or is this the true definition of love? When we stop focusing on ourselves and take a moment to think what someone else might need. Big time points, Jason. BIG.

So, we all know how supportive the runner-blogging-world is.  Case in point, I got a gift in the mail a couple of days ago from Ms. Emz. Just because. You know how I love those “just because” moments. When someone does something kind for you with no hope of personal gain. We all need to do one “just because” a day and things might be a bit brighter.

The gift was the famous I Want You to Want Tee from Punk Rock Racing:


Only, I’m not going to pretend to look near as good as Emz does in the shirt. Mostly because I don’t have that sweet belt buckle and I don’t have those long gorgeous legs.


I had to add a little something to make the shirt more legit for me:


So, here’s how it went yesterday when I wore the shirt. You knew there had to be a story, didn’t you? I’m nothing but a boring housewife without my stories.

First let me say, I don’t know how I always seem to find myself in compromising positions. It’s been this way my whole life. I go about my days, feeling pretty confident, then *BAM* I get reminded that I was put on this earth to be laughed at (in a good way).

There was the time I overflowed the toilet.

And, the time I fell off the treadmill.

Or, the time I crapped in a tree.

Don’t forget the time I wore the security tag.

And, there have been countless other incidents involving unexpected farts, a spontaneous puke all over my boyfriend’s bed after a night of imbibing (college), my bathing suit top falling off in front of my boyfriend’s family (different boyfriend).

If anything ever happens to Ken I’m going to have a hell of a time finding a date after this post. Unless you’re the type who goes for a woman who pukes on your bed, overflows your toilet then tops it off with a delicate fart.

Yesterday, I went to the gym and actually got on the bike for the first time since the injury. It was only 30 minutes, but it didn’t involve a pool and I was psyched. I got dressed again in my new shirt and headed to Starbucks because this is what I do after workouts as my prize. I was feeling pretty sassy, knowing everyone was checking out my shirt (fantasy world). I ordered my Grande Christmas Blend and headed over to add the cup of half and half that I always put in my coffee. I like to call it half and half with a splash of coffee.

As I stood there, I realized this.


Yeah, that’s right. My fly was open the whole time. Since I left the gym. Zoom in and you’ll see what I’m talking about. Someone should have yelled, “XYZ PDQ!” (examine your zipper, pretty darn quick) like they did in grade school.


It’s always a good lesson in humility to be me.

Funny thing was, later on I went to the groomer (because a one eyed, three legged dog with an erection problem needs to look good too), and the zipper was down again. I don’t seem to learn. I wish I could blame it on the pants, but they’re not those pants that that zipper that always falls down. It’s just me.

Keeping it in my pants,


PS: I’m working on a very special water running video for you, so visit back.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Today’s Thoughts

You guys love some stickers! Sorry to say, the *free* 150 are gone. If you emailed me before suaroval11 a.m. MDT, yours is free. I will have more available soon for $2/piece (includes shipping). You can buy them through the blog once I figure out how to do that. I’ll let you know when I’ve got them and am all set up.

Addressing 150 envelopes takes a long time. But, I still like it better than water running. Plus, I have help. It takes a village to send out stickers. Ken is trying to act all, “Yeah, my wife makes me do this and I’m too cool for this sticker thing.” But he’s seriously all jacked up inside. Plus, you can only look so cool with a squirt of yogurt on your shirt.


Here’s what occurred to me today:

  • People like free stickers.
  • Just like the SNL skit, the cashiers at Target are really interested in what you’re buying. Most seem partial to children’s clothes and candle items. “Oh, well, isn’t that cute? Where did you find that? I’m going to have to pick me up one of those!”
  • I might only be able to water run for 40 minutes right now, but in 152 days I will run the Boston Marathon. On land. Not in a bathing suit. And, I will be pain free.
  • Most of us pay too much for insurance. I bundled (auto/home) and saved $1,200 a year just by making a phone call. Worth the time. I’ve never used “bundle” as a verb before.
  • I am a runner, but I am other things too.
  • The junk drawer is always a mess. It doesn’t matter what I do. Tape measures, staples, chargers, condoms. It all just accumulates into one big pile of crap.
  • We should never apologize for being ourselves and for doing what is true for us.
  • Children stare at you when you’re on crutches. Adults mostly look the other way.
  • Being injured gives you insight into yourself and others that you would not have otherwise had.
  • There is always that one asshole on the road who cuts in front of you and slows down. Why? Why?
  • Ménage à Trois wine is really good. You should try it sometime. I’m talking about the wine. I’m not that experimental.
  • It’s true that brussell sprouts give you gas. We had them last night. I’m still farting.
  • The dishwasher and trash are always full requiring me to do something
  • Most of us are way too hard on ourselves. We would never expect others to do the things we demand of ourselves.

What occurred to you today?

Licking envelopes,


PS: I’m OFF the crutches. Like completely. There is a God.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

SUAR Sticker

Update: Sorry, the free stickers are gone! I will have them available to buy on my site for $2 soon. If you emailed me before 11 a.m. MDT you are good.

If you are a fan of not making excuses, consider this:


Join the movement to not be a pussy anymore. To get it done.

Want one of these babies? Send your address to shutuprun@gmail.com. They’re on me. Free. Did someone say free*?

I say, “Ess-You-Aye-Are.” Ken says, “sewer,” which is quite appropriate. You say it how you want.

Because I love you,


*For a limited time. First 150 are free. After that, who knows. Maybe 150 people won’t even want it.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Two Cup Sizes (and Giveaway Winner)

Tonight’s dinnertime discussion:

Emma: What is the difference between roast beef and pea soup?

Me: Ummm…don’t know, but it’s a great question

Emma: You can roast beef, but you can’t pee soup

Moving on. Water running is not like land running. For many, many reasons. I don’t love it. I kind of hate it, truth be told. I do it only because I have this stupid crack in my hip.

Despite my training plan that mixes things up every day, water running can be compared to watching paint dry or grass growing.  To maximize this training plan, and to avoid excessive loss of fitness, one is supposed to water run six times per week.

Let me say this. If I was of the male persuasion I would get a boredom boner from all that water running. If you haven’t heard of this type of erection, it is as follows (from the urban dictionary) :

This is a specific variety of boner which occurs when a person is so tired and/or bored that to increase blood flow and activity level, the body acquires an erection as a form of stimulant to heighten alertness.

I guess it’s fortunate I can’t get boners because that is unsightly in a bathing suit and would probably startle the water aerobics ladies. Lord knows with their doctor’s appointments and early bird specials they don’t need any more excitement or heart attacks in the pool.

Now that we’ve established that water running is boring enough to produce and promote erections in the best of us, suffice it to say that I have lots of time to think while I’m fake running in the water.

Today I pondered the new item available from Victoria’s secret, the Miraculous Push Up Bra. Vicki’s insists that this gem will “miraculously add 2 cup sizes to your breasts.” Supposedly women who are considering boob jobs are advised to purchase this bra to test out how it feels to be larger.

Two cup sizes? What’s are these bras made out of? Cantaloupes?

The Miraculous Bra comes in sizes 32AA to 38DD. Jeezus!  If you are already a 38DD you have no business graduating two cup sizes. That’s 38F ladies! I don’t even know what that looks like. Off to Google images, be right back.

Ah, hell. Didn’t find much in the way of good images, but did find this:


All you do is eat these cookies and your breast size is supposed to grow to an F cup. How does the cookie know? There is also cake, pudding and tea. Those Asians have amazing technology these days. And big ass boobs, I suppose.

Welcome to my world. The world of water running where your mind wanders to far off places.

Winner of the running skirt? This was not to be a random drawing. I asked why you read my blog to try to find out something very specific. Why you read my blog. What you like, why you bother. It is useful info to me.

Poop. Farts. Humor. Inspiration. Information. Crudeness.

That’s what you like.

Loved, loved the feedback. I have to give it to Laurie from the (Mis)adventures of a Jogging Stroller Mom for her Ode to SUAR poem.  It wasn’t just that the poem was clever, but I did think it caught the essence of the blog and what I try to convey here. Do you think you could add in a line about F Cup Cookies? Laurie, send me your address and I’ll get the skirt out to you.  You need to get a job with Hallmark or something. You’ve got raw talent.

Don’t worry. I’ll be back to “real” running soon and all this talk of erections, old ladies and F Cup Pudding will be just a bad memory.

Off to eat some cookies,


Sunday, November 14, 2010

When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemon Drops (video)

As far as days go, Saturday was a damn good one.

For like the 512th time in her short life, Emma, 9, was yanked prematurely from the warmth of her bed to go watch some combination of family members running a race. This ritual has become as much a part of our lives as playing “20 questions” at dinner or “fart in the round” (a fun game where each family member does their best to fart and you go in a circle. Often times this is a spontaneous game where one person starts, usually a child, and the rest join in. You should try it sometime. You know what they say about families who fart together. They smell?).

Sam, 13, and Ken were running the Turkey Trot 10K. Sam was aiming for a PR, which would be anything below 57:24. 57:23 would be fine. I did my best to park Ken’s big ass truck all crazy and sideways on the side of the road so we could catch them at the four mile mark.

The only thing I like more than watching races is running races. Being on on the sidelines ROCKS even when you are injured and wish you could be running. I get so caught up I find myself getting horse from cheering on strangers and loved ones. I fight back tears constantly. I love the spirit of the race, what can I say.

Mile four and here they come, looking strong, strong, strong. Jess from Mile High Jess left me a comment letting me know she was just behind the boys and recognized me. Hi Jess! She got a PR, so congrats!! (Oh, and whoever it was that said, “I read your blog!” when they ran by, leave me a comment and let me know who you are!)

Here’s Sam (664) and Ken (663). Okay, #450. If you even try to edge out my son or flirt with my husband, I’ll take you down with my crutch:


Here’s Ken handing something off to Emma (see her sweet little gloved pink hand?). Probably his giblet warmer: (Hey! Look! It’s Jess and her husband, right behind them, 895 and 896)


There they go. My two most  favorite clumps of testosterone in the whole world, (well, and then there’s my dad, of course).


Emma and I hauled ass in Ken’s oversized manly truck to the finish, honking and yelling like maniacs. I had to pull a u-turn at one point and it involved driving off road into a ditch. I’m convinced that driving/parking to find love ones while their running races is completely life threatening. You have no idea how many close calls I’ve had.

But, dammit if we weren't at the finish when they crossed it in 55:25! Sam takes a full two minutes off for a new PR. He’s looking a bit ragged, but he’s doing it. Ken, like a good dad, let’s son take the lead. (Note to self: Sam needs new shoes):



7th grade posse. All kinds of middle school greatness:


Us. Playing “Fart in the Round” and you can’t even tell:


Post race, I grabbed my vodka and PJs and headed up to mountains with Erika for some girl time. Once we hit the Continental Divide the weather got crazy bad.


And cold.


We got to the house, which is really shabby and should be condemned (note sarcasm):


And immediately started with the cocktails because nothing says happy hour like 2pm on a snowy Saturday (cue most overused phrase ever: It’s 5 o’clock somewhere).


I had decided that lemon drop martinis were in order (thanks, Kathy, for the recipe), and if you’re going to make them right, you need to use a shit ton of lemons (this was for three drinks, sorry lemon trees somewhere you are feeding girls’ weekends everywhere):


And, then obviously you need to make a video (me and Erika). Don’t look like I have no hurt hip:

What the hell was that?, is right. See, life after 40 can be fun! And insane. I probably need to be on some sort of downer medication to bring me back to earth. I swear, I hadn’t yet had even a sip of alcohol. Just lots of meth. Kidding.

We drank, ate and watched SATC2, which we thought sucked the big one. Like Aidan would really just happen to be in Abu Dabi.

Late night, once were were really dehydrated and tired, we got in the hot tub. It was about 5 degrees, snowing and windy. We farted out chicken enchiladas for awhile (but with the bubbles, it’s hard to tell, but the stench, good God). We stayed in until we saw a coyote walk by and then heard him start howling. We hauled ass inside because we are wimps like that. Camera got so cold it fogged up.


This morning, it was time to head back to reality (one eyed dog is probably hungry, dirty skid marked underwear to launder, etc.).

We bid farewell. Right here are two of the best girlfriends anyone could hope for:


Grateful for it all,