Friday, January 29, 2010

The Sweaty Crack (aka Bikram) Experience

Anytime I want to try something new, I do tons of research beforehand because I don't want to appear stupid or vulnerable. The ironic thing is despite any research I always look stupid and vulnerable.

I told you I was trying Bikram (hot) yoga this week. I did some research and took into account what you all told me about it. This is what I learned:

Preparation:

  • Don't eat within two hours of starting class. So, I ate an energy bar five minutes before class. I like to push the envelope. What was the worst that could happen? Would my beads of sweat resemble energy bars? Would I poop myself? Would my sweat smell like an energy bar? Would I puke on my mat? Let's test it.
  • Bring a towel to mop up the wet that continually drips off of our body. Check.
  • Expect that you might get nauseous or dizzy. Sweet.
  • Bring water. But don't drink it unless you are between postures (thanks for the tip, Ulyana) or you will be called a name and maybe kicked out
  • Wear limited, tight fitting clothing. I wore my speedo. I mean my banana holder. Just kidding, I don't have a banana. What to wear was really on my mind. I didn't want to stand out as the new girl. So I googled pictures, hoping to see what the cool kids wear, and found this:
  • This picture alone made me almost not go. What pose is this exactly? Scarymaninspeedoonwoman'sback-asana?

The actual experience:

On Tuesday I went to the Hot Flow class at Solar Yoga. This is supposedly a mixture of Bikram and Vinyasa yoga styles. 90 minutes. 100 degrees. It was fine. Everyone was very serious, so much so that I wanted to start laughing hysterically or let out a giant, juicy, sweat induced fart. I sweated a lot, but didn't feel I was quite at my edge. The instructor did this real cool chant thing at the beginning. Her voice was so earthy and smooth. It gave me goosebumps.

Today I went to the HOT class, which is the traditional Bikram yoga. 26 poses, each done twice. 90 minutes. The thermostat said 107.4 degrees.


Again, everyone was very serious. I had a few moments of feeling pushed to my edge, but never wanted to quit or lay down and cry. I did see stars once when we were in this pose, which was kind of cool:

(Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Paschimotthanasana - Standing Separate Leg Stretching Pose)

My spell check does not know what to do with that posture name. Who makes this stuff up anyway?

Here is an observation:

The bathrooms are really nice at this place. Mouthwash, q-tips, tampons. I guess that is why it costs $16 a class. Ouch. I guess sweating your ass off is only for the rich.

You may be asking why would anyone do this kind of thing? First of all, does burning almost 800 calories in 90 minutes catch your attention? Here are some additional benefits from this site:

BENEFITS OF BIKRAM YOGA:
Reshapes your body
Restores flexibility
Tones, strengthens, and lengthens your muscles
Strengthens your spine
Improves circulation
Reduces risk of sports injury
Achieves relief from pain
Reduces your weight – lose pounds by balancing your metabolism
Raises energy level
Diminishes the effects of stress
Increases balance, coordination, focus and discipline
Clears your mind
Calms your soul
Ensures healthy and balanced functioning of the skeletal, muscular, circulatory, nervous, digestive, elimination, respiratory, endocrine, and mental systems of the body

BENEFITS OF THE HEAT:
Warms the muscles for greater flexibility
Helps achieve a deeper stretch
Flushes toxins from the body
Improves efficiency of the immune system
Creates a cardiovascular workout
Burns calories
Builds endurance


Need I say more?

Overall, I'm all over this experience. I LOVE to push myself to my limits and I love to be well-rounded in the types of exercise I do. More than anything, I want to get old(er) being limber, cleansed and strong. So, I guess I'm going back.

When is the last time you tried something new or took a risk? I'd really like to hear from each of you. I think we can inspire each other to not be afraid.

Drinking: Vic's Coffee

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Laxatives and Other Such Things

I am blushing over here. Gosh darn, thanks for all of your compliments on my ageing body. Some of you even used the word "HOT" (in caps), which has never been used to describe me in any way, shape or form except for that time when I was three years old and my mom felt my forehead and exclaimed, "You, my sweet thing, are HOT."

Seriously, thanks for the kind words. I really wasn't fishing for compliments (want to see my abs again?) but I thought the bikini thing would be funny. My son might be scarred for life after videotaping his mother grabbing her girls, but he's grown up with me for twelve years, so I think he can handle it.

I am trying not to think about the fact that my foot is hurting at the site of the my stress fracture so I have been engaging in other activities. Like messing with people.

I know it doesn't surprise you that I love practical jokes.

When I first got out of college I was working in an (unnamed) office in D.C. A friend and I were supposed to bring food to the staff meeting (40 people or so). The night before, we made muffins, melted ex.lax and drizzled it on the baked goods. No one really ate the muffins except for my co-worker, Alberto. He told me after the meeting, "Your muffins sucked so I just picked the chocolate (aka laxative) off of the top." I told him what the chocolate really was. He spent the afternoon running to the bathroom yelling in his Spanish accent, "I'm going to KEEEELLL you!" I realize in hindsight I could have been fired or even arrested, but what the hay? It now makes for a good story. But those were the days when I was immature.

I might have too much time on my hands.

Two years ago, Sam was this for Halloween:

I was cleaning his closet out the other day and found the mask from the costume. I put it in the kids' bathroom. Pretty scary, huh?

They didn't really freak out too much, just had a few nightmares that night. Later on, Ken and I got into bed and looked up to find this:

So, I had to hide it in Sam's backpack and he took it to school. Kind of uncool for a sixth grader.

And, this morning I got in the shower and found this:

You never know where it will turn up next. It could be in your house right now.

What's the best practical joke you've ever played or that's been played on you???


Drinking: Coffee from Amante in Boulder

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Champion (video)

Remember how I told you Champion was going to send me some running stuff to review? Well, true to their word I got a few items in the mail last week. You know I can't resist posting a ridiculous video of myself, so here goes:

Monday, January 25, 2010

Warning: Don't Slow Down

A couple of notes on a Monday, so I don't forget.

I just bought a new hair straightener. My hair is already straight, but I like to spend my money on things I don't need, so I bought one. I know the warnings on most products are ridiculous, but this was the dumbest one yet:

"Do not use while sleeping."

Really? Because I was going to go to bed tonight and do the impossible by straightening my hair while asleep, but I guess I won't attempt that after all. Maybe I will just eat my frozen pizza before I cook it or spray my deodorant in my eyes or use my microwave to dry my dog or use my toilet brush orally or substitute my earplugs with silly putty. Ooops, can't do those things either, according to the warning labels. Silly warning labels.

Second thing. We are all always looking for songs for our iPods. Those running songs that get you pumped and keep you going. Funny that even tho I have hundreds of songs on my iPod, I am desperately sick of them all. Ken told me about a great new running song by Matt & Kim called, "Don't Slow Down." Appropriate for a running song, n'est-ce pas? I pulled it up on iTunes, it is really does have a catchy beat. I LOVE this song. And I think it's a good song for your tempo and speed workouts because it tells you to not slow down. I'm pretty smart:


Third thing. I did my speed workout today on the treadmill. I usually do it at the track, but the track was occupied by pre-pubescent boys and I didn't want to wow them with my buxom bosoms. Anyway, the workout called for 5 miles with 1600 x 2 @ 7:30. Holy speedshit, this is 8 mph. When I turned the treadmill up that high it freaked me out, given last week's accident. So I actually did a total nerd treadmill thing and held on with one hand. I don't care what you think of me. At least I was safe. And it was nothing like the time I saw someone doing this on the treadmill.

Second to last thing. I am going to my first ever Bikram hot flow 90 minute yoga class tomorrow. Any advice from you regular Krammers?

Last thing. Check out this blog for a great giveaway and to leave your shock value story.

Drinking: H2O. Too late for coffee, too early for wine.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

More Than You Asked For

Yeah, you know this one is going around. The ten things that make you happy. I have been waiting for someone to tag me on this. I NEVER get tagged. You all must not care a lot about what makes me happy. Well thank God for Marlene, who was kind enough to care.

Here's what makes me happy, shut up and run style:

  1. A good, voluminous, healthy turd in the morning, especially before a run. Lately they have been a foot long. Like the hot dog. I think it's the new probiotic I'm taking.


  2. The 75 year old cashier at Target who every time you ask him how he is he says, "Fat and sassy." He is really skinny, and kinda sassy. He epitomizes the Target team member. Consistent, smiley and dressed in red and khaki. I wonder if his Depends match?
  3. That first sip of coffee in the morning and the 2,308 sips that follow. I love me some coffee. But only before noon.

  4. Sitting at a blackjack table in Las Vegas with Erika or Ken on my right, a Heineken on my left. I am showing two aces. I have just split them on a $100+ bet and get two face cards.

  5. Getting my picture taken with big perverted frogs


  6. Seeing my kids come downstairs first thing in the morning. Even when they're pissed off because it's early and time for school. Even when they have bad breath (which they always do now that they're older and have braces). Even though she's almost nine, Emma still likes to curl up in my lap and breathe her bad breath on me.

  7. Curled in bed with a glass of chardonnay. The Bachelor is on.

  8. Flying back into Denver. There's nothing like coming home.

  9. Watching the snow fall.

  10. When someone tells you everything is going to be all right and you believe them.

  11. This picture of me because it looks like I have a really big and shaved you-know-what, but those are my thighs. Just an illusion, my friends.

I could go on and on. Seriously there are so many things that make me happy and so many things that make me pissed, sad, embarrassed and/or irritated. Some of those?

  1. It's January 24. Christmas lights are still up.

  2. The fact that my dog's penis never goes into it's holder. It's always out. Lipstick anyone?

  3. When you are dating a new boyfriend and you blow up his grandparents' toilet, so much so that it overflows. A blog for another day.

  4. When you're waiting in line for the bathroom on an airplane and some big guy goes in and is in there for a ...............very...........longtime and you know when you go in it's going to be outrageously smelly and you sit down and the seat is warm.

  5. Sicks kids.

  6. When you fart during a final exam

  7. Frying bacon in the morning and smelling like bacon all day.

  8. Falling off of the treadmill

  9. Getting injured and not being able to run. This should actually be #1.

  10. Falling while skiing and having to be taken down on a stretcher by teh ski patrol

So there my friends are some of my happiest and unhappiest. More than you asked for, eh?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Better Than Viagra?

Guess what I got in the mail today? No, not some new mascara, but you like it don't you? I also didn't get a manual on exercises you can do for uneven eyes, but according to this picture, I need something like that.

Actually, Pom Wonderful, makers of the only brand of 100% authentic pomegranate juice, sent me a case of free samples (8-8 oz bottles) to try (this is the part of the blog where I am disclosing that I received something for free). They also sent some info on the history of pomegranate juice and the health benefits of said juice. Having never studied pomegranates and their magical powers in history class, this was all news to me. Here's what immediately caught my eye:
  • Those drinking 8 oz. of 100% pomegranate juice daily for four weeks were 50% more likely to experience erectile improvement. Thank God. My erections just aren't what they used to be.
But seriously, one of the main benefits of this juice is that hundreds of scientific tests also show POM to be a superior source of antioxidants, with more potent antioxidants than red wine, grape juice, blueberry juice, cranberry juice, green tea, Vitamin C and Vitamin E. Yowza!


I am still sticking to red wine as a health drink, well, because I am a self described WINE-O and this gives me a darn good excuse. BTW, anyone ever drink blueberry juice? Anyone ever seen it? Am I missing something? It's not right by the Tropicana, that's for sure. Those poor souls who make blueberry juice must have the tiniest fingers in order to squeeze all those little berries.

Another advantage of POM? Big time friend of the cardiovascular system. Better blood flow (remember the erect penis?) and an overall decrease in arterial plaque.

The basic nutrition facts for an 8oz serving:

150 calories
520mg potassium
40g carbs
32g sugar


It packs a lot of stuff into that small bottle. And the price reflects that. I beleive a 16 oz bottle in the store is about $4.50.

Now about taste. This stuff is strong, but in a good way. Kind of like how Popeye is strong. Very concentrated. It actually does taste a little like wine to me, but I don't find myself hanging off chandeliers or streaking after I drink it. I enjoy the taste, but for some it might be over powering and take some getting used to. It starts out kind of sweet and ends with a tart finish.

Overall, I like the Pom Wonderful. I probably wouldn't drink it everyday because I'm not a big juice fan and it's too expensive. But it does boast some amazing health benefits and the bottles are pretty dang cute. I give it two erections thumbs up!

Drinking: Duh! Pom Wonderful. Didn't you read my blog?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Re-enactment (video)

You guys kill me. Your reactions to my blog yesterday might have been even funnier than when I fell off the treadmill. I am relieved to hear that some of you do similar things like run into paper shredders and slip on grapes. I don't feel so alone. I also enjoyed hearing that you were laughing with me not at me, but we all know what that means. You're laughing at me with lots of sympathy.

I'd like to say we could put this episode behind us, but there is some unfinished business to attend to.

First of all, Ken pointed out, as did Alison, that it was impossible to figure out which body part this was:

Ken actually thought it was my nose, which is really funny if you take a minute to imagine it as my nose. Big freaking nose.

It is actually my knee. Here is the full picture. Sorry for the confusion:


Secondly, I would give my left nut (if I had one) to watch the surveillance video of myself falling off the treadmill, but I'm pretty sure that everyone who works at the gym has worn out the video by now. I can just hear it, "Hey Jake. You've got to see this. This stupid chick actually steps onto a moving treadmill. Check this out" and, "Why don't we go get a keg for tonight and watch that girl falling off the treadmill a few hundred times."

In the absence of such a video, the only mature thing to do was to create a re-enactment for your viewing pleasure. I warn you, I look really ridiculous in this video, but I ask you: who looks cool while falling off of a treadmill?

Dramatization. Do not try this at home:

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I Bet You've Never Done This

Sometimes I really wonder about myself.

There was the time when I cut my ear while shampooing my hair because I kept the razor in my hand from shaving my legs and went to lather up my scalp and - ouch.

Then there was the time right before Ken and I got married when I was driving his car (yes, we were still in "his and her" land) when I got a foot cramp at a stop light. I put the car in park to massage my foot. I then took the car out of park (the light was still red - long light) and meant to put my foot on the brake, but instead put it on the gas, revved up and ran right into the truck stopped in front of me. The guy I hit was so confused. I'll never forget when he said, "You were just sitting there, stopped at the light when all the sudden you sped up and hit me. What the hell?" And yes, Ken still did marry me. You can talk to him about that.

Truly, the list goes on and on.

Well, unfortunately I got to add to my dumb-as-shit list today. I went to the gym, feeling a bit nervous about this tempo run I was going to do. So, maybe I was distracted. I hadn't done 7:56 min/miles in awhile. I got there and all the treadmills were taken. This never happens. So I change and stand around waiting for one to open up. Finally, an older woman gets off of her treadmill. I wasn't totally sure she was finished, so I asked her and she said she was. I guess I was so giddy to finally score a treadmill, that I walked up and got on the treadmill without realizing (wait for it):


The treadmill was on!

Yes, my friends, she had left it on. I was in enough of my own world that I didn't take note. Most people would have noticed it was on with the belt moving and all. But, nope, not me.

So, you can imagine what happens next. I swear if someone had been videotaping this I would for sure win some contest. I go flailing off the end of the treadmill (not unlike those contestants on the Biggest Loser who can't take it and roll off). My water, phone and iPod go flying. Someone (It might of been me starts yelling, "Oh no! Oh no!"). I am scrambling, trying to get some sort of footing, but I am on my stomach and really the only thing to do is to let the damn machine throw me onto the floor. This whole episode has actually made quite a bit of noise in our echoey gym, so I'm pretty confident everyone there saw this happen. The only thing that could have been worse is if I crapped myself during this escapade, but I was spared.

So what do I do? What any respectable person does when you make a fool out of yourself. You ignore any and all pain you are feeling and get up and act like you meant to do what you just did. You do anything and everything to divert attention away from yourself. Someone asks if I have any injuries. I'm smiling, giggling even as I say "Oh, no." But my knee is killing me and as I pick up my phone I notice it has a piece of skin on it (I later realize this is from my thumb).

And the tempo run? Hell yeah, I killed it! My ego might be kind of damaged and I might need to join a different gym, but those 7:56 min/miles have got nothin' on me. What's really ironic? I am coming back from a stress fracture and spend every ounce of my being trying to not get re-injured and then I go and do this. Seriously, what is wrong with me?

The damage (could've been a lot worse and yes those are hairs on my leg. If Nair wants to send me some samples to review, that would be fine):

PS: Happy birthday to Ken who turns 44 today. He is the love of my life. And he married me despite all of my short comings (bloody ear, wrecking his car, poopy pants).


Drinking: Nothing. Should be doing shots to forget what happened.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

That Starbucks Guy Runs Too Much

Today I had to take my own advice. Stop thinking about it and start moving. I woke up to gray skies and 35 degrees. Call me crazy, but sitting with the Sunday paper and a big cup of coffee sounded more appealing than an 8 mile run. Just so I couldn't back out, I rolled out of bed and into my running clothes. I figured I would looks stupid reading the paper in my tights and Under Armour and the kids would just keep asking me when/if I was going to run. Better to just go do it. Plus, Ken was coming along and it's way easier to get out there with someone else than on your own.

I'd like to say the run was the best ever and I got inspired and I was so glad to be out there. But, really, it was just okay. I was sluggish. The air smelled like cow shit. There were big hills. I felt queasy. My stomach cramped, but I farted and felt better. In the end we did 8 miles in 1 hour, 10 minutes. Not the fastest but still a respectable (in my book) 8:52 min/mile pace.

Afterwards, I went to Starbucks to grab a misto. I was wearing my Boulder Marathon running hat. The baristo (is that masculine for barista?) asked me if I was gong to run that race again this year. He said he had done his first half at that race this year. In my head I'm thinking, "Ah, a new runner. Doing is first half." So, I ask him how his first half went. His reply? "Well I had done a 100K the weekend before and I just wanted to see how it would go doing a shorter race with a different crowd." My head was spinning as I tried to add up how many miles a 100K was. I know a 10K is 6.2 miles, so it must be close to...holy shit 60 miles! And if I was a mathematician or even slightly smart I would've known immediately that 6.2 x 100 = 62 but I think all that smell of cow shit had killed some brain cells. So much for cute boy doing his first half. He quickly moved from being coy and vulnerable first-half-boy to slightly annoying stud.

And, if this wasn't enough, I got the following text from my 12 year old son when I got home:


I wasn't sure if I should call social services to come pick him up or if I should congratulate him for being clever. I know it is my fault he writes these things since I make may pooping habits fairly public. For what it's worth, I don't just poop my pants whenever, like when I'm watching American Idol (although I did love the "pants on the ground" song). The crapping of the pants only happens sometimes and only when I'm exerting myself beyond what is safe on a run. And it's not a huge turd, but more of a squirt. Just to clarify.

I am going to make my first million developing a running short with built-in Depends. What are your goals?


Drinking: H20. Trying to re-hydrate.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Taking That First Step

Here's the deal, and I've said it before. It's the reason why this blog is titled "Shut Up and Run." As humans, as mere mortals, we will find reasons to not challenge ourselves, to not do the things that are difficult. Sometimes all we really need is a jump start. We have spent so long on the couch, neglecting our bodies or simply being removed from them, that it is tough to take that first step. For some of us, we don't really want to work hard. For others, we have goals, but part of what we do is that we put them off. We know not why we do this. But we are crafty at it.

We come up with excuses that we keep justifying to ourselves and to those around us. But, we know they are bullshit. We know if we set our minds to things, we can do them.

There are stories of inspiration everywhere. Unfortunately, those are sometimes overshadowed by the stories of laziness, poor eating habits, or lengthy time in front of the TV or computer (where I am now). Most of the people we run into are not walking the walk. The talk around the water cooler is typically about what people are planning to do (diet, start a new exercise plan) or what they have just started for a x number of days (diet, new exercise plan). The thing that bothers me most about all of this fixation on the new diet, the new exercise plan is it becomes so much about us and what we are doing. It becomes a very self centered activity.

It's a bit less common to hear people talk about eating clean everyday, getting enough sleep and sunlight and actively and routinely exercising. You know why you don't always hear from these people? Because they're just doing it, not talking about it. It is how they live every single day without resolutions, or gimmicks, or the Hollywood Cookie Diet. It is a way of life. You do not expend every moment of everyday fixating on yourself and all that other stuff. Living a healthy lifestyle every day allows you space to give back to others and to get the entire focus off of yourself.

So, today, if you need that extra boost to get you going, take a look at this octogenarian. She's 81 years old. She runs at least three marathons a year, but didn't start running until she was 52. She looks amazing. Fit, toned, thin. She is in her right mind. She has made a lifestyle out of running. It has given her life and longevity. Meet Joy Johnson:

One of the single best ways to start something new, something you've been putting off is to just start. It's not about running the marathon today. It's about taking a single step in the right direction. We all know Rome wasn't built in a day (duh, whoever thought it really was). We also know that anything worth its weight in gold can't be done overnight. Running a marathon is a metaphor for any major undertaking: losing weight, getting a degree, going through a pregnancy. It takes time, effort, and pain. But the payoff? The payoff is like nothing you have ever experienced. It becomes less about having run the 26.2 miles, and more about believing in yourself. So take that first step. Today.

I am curious. What is something you've been putting off starting? Why haven't you taken that first step?

Drinking: Starbucks Colombian coffee.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Urge to Pee

My mood is much improved today, in large part due to your comments. They made me LOL and I never use that little acronym, but it fits today. Actually, let's go far as to say I LMFAO or LMFAOWROFL. If you can tell me what that stands for I'll give you something. Did I ever tell you that for the longest time I thought LOL meant "lots of love" and I could never figure out why people used it when they did. For example: "My dog is dragging his ass on the carpet" Response: "LOL!" (lots of love?? why would you respond with lots of love?). Then I got a grip and figured it out or one of my kids told me.

This is NOT my dog, but this is the funky butt drag. This looks like it hurts:



One of my favorite comments today regarding embarrassing moments was from Julie:

When I was going to college I worked as a food server. On our menu we had a platter with different appetizers. I was serving a table of six business men. They ordered a few of these platters. I delivered the platters, set them down, and said, "Here you are gentlemen, your appetizer platters. Here are your three sauces...this is ranch, here is the cocktail sauce and this one is cucumber dick! Oh my God, I mean cucumber dip!"

Cucumber DICK! It just doesn't get funnier than that.

Another reason my mood has improved as that Joie and I got in a 7.75 mile run. It was muddy and snow-packed, but good to be outside moving the legs.

And a third reason my mood has improved is that registration for the first ever Denver Rock 'n' Roll Marathon has opened! It is on October 17, 2010. If you are one of the first few hundred to sign up you get major bucks off: just $70 for the full and $50 for the half. Because I cannot turn down a deal, I registered for the full. I think you should too and then we could meet face to face and then we could LOL throughout the whole race and maybe even COP (crap our pants) which is no joke if you run with me.

Here is my current 2010 race rundown:

May 9, 2010: Colorado Marathon
May 31, 2010: Bolder Boulder 10K
June 6, 2010: Longmont Triathlon
August 14, 2010: Georgetown to Idaho Springs Half Marathon
October 17, 2010: Rock 'n' Roll Denver Marathon

These are the ones set in stone. I'm sure others will come up. I'd like to have a few 5Ks sprinkled in there along with a couple more halves (halfs?). And of course, if anyone is going to pay my way like last year and invite me on their team: the Hood to Coast Relay in August. Anyone ever done the Wine Country Runs Half in March? This is getting expensive.

Lastly, I leave you with this gem. In a world where we have every convenience at our fingertips, it's a wonder why it took so long for someone to come up with this: http://www.runpee.com/. Let's say you go to the movies a lot and you have to pee during the movies a lot (or you had Mexican for lunch and pee is the least of your worries). This website is for you! It tells you what the best times are during specific movies to use the facilities. This is genius. Seriously, check it out.


Drinking: Yogi Green Mint Tea.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Don't Talk With Your Mouth Full

Is it just me or do you sometimes have days when you can't pull yourself out of your crap mood? When everyone you talk to asks you if you're okay because you "sound a bit down?" When every little thing aggravates you from the pears that aren't ripe yet to your dog who can't stop licking himself (and when he does he replaces that activity by pulling his ass across the carpet. Why do they do that? Is it to wipe, or is it because they have an itch? I can't believe that dogs really want to wipe that badly or that they are that smart. I mean, we're talking about animals who constantly eat their own poop. Would they want to wipe their mouths after doing that?)

For me it's one of those down days. I can't blame it on much except maybe PMS, but really it's probably just it being January and cold and dark and the fact that life feels mundane sometimes.

To make matters worse, I made an ass of myself today. Let me explain.

When I am not blogging or running or taking care of my kids or wiping the dog's butt, I am usually working. I am self employed. Sometimes I still have to reach out to someone in the real world (i.e., an office) to ask a question. Today was such a day. I try to avoid this question asking nonsense because then I have to use the word "phone tag," or pretend to be a professional when I am really hanging out in my PJs watching the dog drag his ass around on the carpet.

On this such day, I am at the computer eating my lunch when I decide to make the question call to a supervisor. I am listening to her voice mail (because of course you can NEVER expect anyone to answer at that building full of bureaucrats dressed in red tape) when I decide to take an enormous bite of my falafel, tomato and yogurt sandwich. Just then the voice mail beeps and it's time for me to talk. For a split second I thought I should spit out the bite of sandwich, but instead I start talking. I realize that I sound like I have a sock in my mouth, which I pretty much do (last night's falefal balls were a bit dry). I apologize for having a full mouth on the message while saying something lame like "I didn't know the beep would come so quickly." I keep talking, but am very self conscious about having the full mouth and wonder if I should take a moment to spit it out mid speak. I know that doing so will be obvious and I can't take that risk. So, I talk away, spitting pieces of pita bread on my keyboard and feeling like a loser. I end the message and stare at the phone wondering if I will get a call back. I haven't.

Sometimes when the mood is rotten and you can't pull yourself out, it's good to go for that run. I didn't do that. Here I sit. I am, however, hoping for an 8 miler tomorrow and a start to marathon training on Monday.

On the bright side, I did see this little guy sitting out back this morning. I named him "foxy" because it is clever. I wonder if he wipes his ass on the ground.


What have you done lately to embarrass yourself? Please tell me it's not just me.

Drinking: Not drinking anything. Waiting for Ken to get back with Chick-fil-A. Going to lose it if it's not soon. I need to go to bed so I can get up and start this day over.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Let's Talk Running Clothes


I am not going to lie. Like some of you, I was recently contacted by Champion, maker of cool and affordable fitness clothes. They asked me to highlight the Champion Innovation Lab on my blog in exchange for some Champion schwag to later review on said blog (and maybe model and maybe giveaway). Because I love new things (especially of the *free* variety) and because this program is actually pretty cool I thought it was a decent trade off.

What is the Champion Innovation Lab? Good question. I had no clue until they contacted me. Here's the gist:

Starting this past September, participants were given product from Champion’s extensive portfolio, including apparel from the popular Double Dry, Compression and Seamless lines. Athletes are then asked to catalogue their experiences in a provided Training Log, answering questions on weather, pace, route (e.g., train, street, treadmill), comfort, fit and washing machine care. Insights garnered from these logs continue to provide Champion with updates on how its products are delivering in real life. Runners are additionally outfitted in Champion apparel for the Half and Full Marathon events and are announced as Innovation Lab participants when crossing the finish line.

In fact, Champion had many Innovation Lab Athletes running at the Disney World Half Marathon today. I hope the clothes didn't freeze into their skin. Were any of you there for the Florida cold fest?

I think this lab thing is innovative. Guess that's why it's the Innovation Lab Here's the main reason I like this innovating Innovation Lab:

You don't just wear the stuff and say, "I liked it" or "It sucked" or "It made my butt look fat." You actually think about how you liked it under certain conditions.
  • When you were stinking hot, did the clothing wick well and keep you dry?

  • When you washed it, did it retain its shape, color, etc? Did the skid marks wash out easily?

  • When you were on that 20 mile run, did the shorts ride up? Did the shirt chafe in scary places?

You get the picture. A company trying to solicit this kind of detail and satisfaction level from its customers clearly wants to do a good job.

My question to you is: how do you choose your running clothes. Brand? Quality? How phat it looks? Practicality? Price? I usually choose mine based on how well it fits, how good it looks, and how well reputed the company is who makes it. Price is important too. I'm not stuck on any particular brand. If it's comfy, looks good, is the right price and makes me look like I got a boob job, I'll probably buy it.

Hope you're Saturday is everything that you dreamed it would be.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Dog Did It (again)

Today it was -55 degrees here with blowing snow, hail and a minor hurricane.

I am just trying to one up everyone in the blog world who is talking weather and how freezing it is where they are. It seems it is effing freezing wherever you are. It is January after all. Except for those losers in Hawaii and Florida (I'm jealous, that's why I'm lashing out). Seriously, I just got out of my car and it was -9, so that's got to count for something.

This cold weather took me inside to the treadmill where I did my six miles. I was flabbergasted, blown away, and speechless when someone who works at the gym asked me how far I run every week because I "make it look so effortless." I have hardly ever in my life been complimented on my running. Consequently, I threw her down on the gym bathroom floor and kissed her (some tongue maybe) and asked her if she wanted my iPod and phone and children for keeps. Just because it was such a nice thing to say to someone like me who is a newer runner with a healing injury and pretty crappy form. Maybe she just was hitting on me. But I don't think so.

I also couldn't believe she complimented me because she was on the treadmill beside me and during my entire run I had the farts. The kind that slip out when your foot makes impact. The kind that might or might not make noise because your iPod is turned up so loud you can't hear your own toots. The kind that smell. The kind that linger. I know I pissed off some people. But I felt I couldn't help it. They slipped out periodically and totalled maybe only 15 for the whole six miles. That's not that bad, right? Next time I 'm going to bring my dog and let him lay by the treadmill the whole time so I have a legitimate scapegoat.

Oh, give me a break. Don't act all put out and offended. You know you fart too. If you didn't, you'd explode. Oprah even endorses it:



I did, indeed, get in my six miles. It felt good and apparently it was effortless. I am gearing up for training to start. I am feeling strong. I am cross training, doing yoga and running. I am signing up for a triathlon in June so I will be forced to cross train (swim, bike). There is nothing like paying a nominal race fee to get you motivated. Especially for us tight asses who can't stand to lose money. I swear, if I signed up for turd eating contest I would do it just because I paid the registration fee. But then I would never sign up for such a thing. Duh.

I'm a bit off today and needing humor, so bear with me. My dad has been in the hospital all week and not doing well, so I have had to find some relief where I can get it. I mean look at me. I have aged 20 years this week. Thanks for partaking in the rant.

Monday, January 4, 2010

What I Won't Do This Year & Some Commandments


The whole blog world is talking 2010 resolutions and goals. This makes me think I should have these things. But what if you're the type who wants no self improvement, is completely content with every aspect of everything at every moment? If you know this person, let's beat them up, cause it's certainly not me.

Here are things I'm not going to do:
  1. Get injured. Seriously. If I get injured again and can't run I'm going to make all of your lives miserable.

  2. Drink as much wine. I don't think I have a problem (burp), but I wonder how much better I might feel and how much stronger my running might be if I cut back

  3. Cuss at my children. Because it's just not nice (Joie, that one's for you)

  4. Lose weight. I know. I must be in the minority on this one. I'm happy where I'm at.

  5. Exercise more. Again, minority. I think I'm okay in this area. Let's face it, like you all, I ran so much I hurt myself. No problem with exercising here.

  6. Hang out with people who bring me down. 'Nuf said.

  7. Get fixated on stupid stuff that doesn't matter. That is, not sweating the small stuff

  8. Let fear get in the way. I decided this one awhile ago when I thought I was being too controlled by my fears. They were getting in the way of my living. I stopped being afraid and started taking leaps.

  9. Miss a chance to hang out with and enjoy someone I love.

  10. Compare myself to anyone else


My 16 week training for the Colorado Marathon starts a week from today. I'm up to six pain-free miles, so I think I'm ready to start a structured plan. To avoid shooting myself in the head yesterday while on the elliptical I listened to a podcast by Endurance Planet. Ever hear of Ultra marathoner Marshall Ulrich and his "Ten Commandments of Endurance"? They apply to each and every one of us who runs. I think I love this man and his wisdom:


10. Expect a journey and a battle--

"Life is not always simple. Don't think that it's just going to be smooth and not a rocky road. Accept that in your mind and then you can deal with things."

9. Focus on the present and set intermediate goals----

"Don't get too far ahead of yourself. Just stay in the present. If you've got some sort of problem…just deal with that. Take a deep breath and solve that one problem and then you can go on to others."

8. Don't dwell on the negative--

"I think it helps to step outside of ourselves and not live in our own space or our own head too much. Look at what's happening out there and focus on even problems of the world or other people. It kind of takes that focus from ourselves."

7. Transcend the physical--

"If you've got an injury, say you've twisted an ankle and you want to keep going--providing you're not doing damage to yourself--take that focus off that ankle. You can keep going as long as you don't get locked into thinking about it continuously. You can transcend that physical aspect."

6. Accept your fate---

"Just accept it for what it is and take it one step at a time."

5. Have confidence that you will succeed---

Recall experiences, "where you've had success in the past. It will give you confidence to go beyond what you normally thought you could."

4. Know that there will be an end---

"There will be an end and we can go on to more fertile soil."

3. Suffering is okay---

"That's the human condition. We're all going to suffer on one level or another."

2. Be kind to yourself---

"If you're running and you need to walk a little bit. That's okay. Know that you have weaknesses just like anybody else."

1. Quitting is not an option---

"Everybody is going to think about quitting. I think about quitting. But you can't let it overwhelm you. You can't let it stop you from your success. And if you frame it in that way--that quitting is not an option--I think that's the best thing to do."


And I leave you with this video of me and the fam in the Colorado mountains today as we rode tubes down a ridiculously steep hill. Just because it makes me smile (if the video keeps pausing, hit pause and wait for it to load completely before watching):


Friday, January 1, 2010

Taking the Plunge (video)

*FYI: I have no clue who big belly tattoo man is

How did you spent your New Year's morning? Hung over in bed? Making a hefty list of resolutions to run more miles and eat fewer Twinkies? Getting your Betty shaped and colored?

This morning I did something I've never done before. Something that involved paying money to be very cold and miserable for a short time. Kind of like how we pay money to run races and find ourselves puking, crapping, crying and in pain. We do these things for the experience. We do it to make memories. We do it because we want to test ourselves in new and different ways. We do it because life just wouldn't be that interesting if we didn't do these things. But, most of all we do these things to have something to blog about.




My adventure this morning was to do the infamous New Year's Day "Polar Bear Plunge" at the Boulder Reservoir. The details are simple.
  1. Show up in 25 degree weather.
  2. Pay a registration fee (which goes towards the Alzheimer's Society, so I'm down with that).
  3. Get in a long line of people wearing bathrobes, bikinis, down coats, flip flops, tutus.
  4. Wait for awhile in your Snuggie until you're so stinking cold your daughter is whining her brains out and your feet are so numbed out you are contemplating dumping your Swiss Miss hot chocolate on them just for a few seconds of relief (hell, covering your feet in boiling liquid sounds better at this point than the pain and cold you are feeling)
  5. Observe the rescue divers get all outfitted and immersed in the 30 degree water in case someone goes into cardiac arrest. Hope it's not you who will need help.
  6. Watch people bounding into the reservoir in groups of 20. Hear them screaming. See them unable to breathe.
  7. Inch closer. Question why the eff you are doing this.
  8. Take off all clothes but your bathing suit. Hope your 12 year old son who is plunging with you doesn't die.
  9. Stand in the cold waiting for your cue to go.... (see me in purple bikini next to my son in the striped shorts)



Moments after emerging from this hell hole of freezing water (it is hard to explain just how cold it really was), Sam and I got in a luke warm and dirty hot tub. We didn't hang out long because I didn't want to start the new year with an STD. We be lined for our clothes and headed to the car. My feet were in bad shape = reynaud's syndrome and all:



The shivering didn't stop until I ingested one Grande Vanilla Latte and one huge bowl of steaming vegetable soup. All in all, some great mother/son bonding and the perfect way to jump start a new year of heart stopping adventures.