Friday, January 29, 2016

It's the Worst Word in the Dictionary...Maybe?

Why the hell am I dressed like this? I am never dressed like this. I am never dressed like this while making out with my dog.

The truth is I do work and I try to not wear running gear every second of my life...but this week there is more to the story.

I refuse to say the "I" word about my situation. The "I" word is a very bad word in the mind of a runner. Even more bad (badder?) than the "C"word or the "F" word.


I am not going to say I'm injured. I am going to say I am in a small setback with running. I am taking a break. I am challenged in the running department. 

Let's back up:

For the past many months I have been cruising along at my usual 30 to 35 miles per week on roads and trails. Minding my own business, hurting no one. At peace with the world. Patting myself on the back for not getting injured in so long.

Here I am:

Then it happened. Tuesday Ken and I went out for a 5 mile run. It was on hard packed snow and ice. I felt fine. Later that day the outside of my right hip was sore, but not bad. Thought nothin' of it. The next day I went for 6 miles and by mid-run the pain was horrendous. Like a stabbing pain even with walking. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

I then did what every self respecting runner does and came home and diagnosed myself via Google. Who need doctors anymore anyway. Clearly I have hip bursitis.

Hip bursitis occurs when some sac (hahahha I said "sac") gets over-filled and inflamed with fluid (hahaaaa I said "sac" and "fluid" in the same sentence) and cause pain. Or something like that. Stupid ass sacs.

Or, maybe not. Maybe it's just a really hateful and angry muscle that got out of whack.

Or, maybe not. Maybe I have a tumor. <self diagnosing has it's drawbacks.

Anyway, clearly this calls for DTOFR (Dreaded Time Off From Running). I've been here before. It's okay, really it is. But excuse me if I see you running and I get out of my car and limp over to you and punch in the crotch.

This is actually the best possible time to be idle. The weather sucks. I don't have a race for a few months. I can do this.

My greatest hope is that this is short lived mother eff'ing non-injury that will disappear as quickly as it appeared. Denial? Maybe, but I'm going with it for now. I am also self medicating with wine and going to Vegas in the morning. I always run in Vegas (love my Strip-runs), but probably not this time...okay, I'll bring my shorts and shoes just in case.

Give me some of that misery-loves-company love:

Are you injured now? With what? 

When was your last injury?

How do you cope? I try very hard to have a positive outlook and to not wallow. This is temporary. I can do other things to stay fit until I am reunited with running.


Monday, January 25, 2016

Blue Apron for the WIN!

If every time you turn around you are hearing something about Blue Apron, there is a reason for that. Blue Apron kicks ass.

Maybe it's the time of the year or maybe it's just me, but I have been in a severe cooking rut. It's as if my brain cannot think beyond the usual boring and unimaginative fare like spaghetti, chili and scrambled eggs.

Then, all of a sudden, it was BATTR! (Blue Apron To The Rescue). I was sent the ingredients for two meals to make for our family of four: Apple Cider Glazed Chicken with Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Potatoes and Carrots AND Tuscan Ribollita Soup with Soft-Boiled Eggs and Lacinato Kale. My meals just went from sad to succulent.

Before I get into showcasing the meals, let me tell you why Blue Apron is a great option for you and your family:

  1. All ingredients are shipped (free) to your door. The packaging makes it such that the box can sit on your porch for many hours if you won't be home until later. 
  2. Obviously the recipes that Blue Apron comes up with are unique, intriguing, healthy and likely very different than what you've been cooking lately (when's the last time you've made Tuscan Ribollita Soup? 'nuf said). 
  3. Blue Apron allows you to cook at home using fresh and quality ingredients. Getting a meal like this at a restaurant would be 3-4x the cost.  
  4. Just off the press: Blue Apron now offers a recycling program. This is great news as in order to deliver the ingredients as fresh as they are, there needs to be a certain amount of packaging. Good to know that this is not wasteful. Learn more HERE.

Onto the food because we love food.

The first recipe I made was the Apple Cider Glazed Chicken. Here's a look at what the ingredients look like out of the box. Everything is pre-measured for you.

I first cut up and roasted the fresh vegetables. This could be a postcard.

Then I cooked up the chicken with some help from my mini-me side kick (want some chicken with that neck?).

Sam pretended he was helping, but he was just taking a break from writing college essays playing Xbox.

The end result was delicious - savory with the perfect amount of crunch and tang. Sorry, I tore into it before snapping a picture.

Next up was the Ribollita soup. If you don't know what this is, let me help you out. This recipe has Tuscan roots from the Middle Ages. It is a veggie tomato based soup that is thickened with bread (Blue Apron uses sourdough). This recipe adds a bit of flare by putting a soft boiled egg on the top.

I wasn't sure I could pull off getting the egg on there in one piece, but the instructions were spot on. YUM. Putting an egg on anything makes it exponentially better.

You can find more delicious recipes HERE.

Want to try Blue Apron? The first 20 readers will get two free meals on their first Blue Apron order. Whaattt??  Just click HERE.

Have you ever tried a meal service like this? Would you consider Blue Apron? Why or why not? 

What's the last meal you cooked? Last night was shrimp fajitas with home made guac.


Post sponsored by Blue Apron.

Thursday, January 21, 2016


I've been thinking about blog prompts. You know where you list certain things about your self or your day or your life.

This one is called "Currently..." I like to read these when other people do them because it gives a look into their life beyond the subject of their blog. I love hearing what people are reading and cooking, what makes them tick, their most embarrassing moments (although I think I have the best one of all time, which involves blowing up my boyfriend's grandparent's toilet), when they last farted, etc. etc.

So, here's my Currently....

Time and Place: 9:51 a.m. on Thursday. Sitting on my ass in my PJs at my desk drinking coffee and working. The view is spectacular.

Cooking: I'm about to put meatless lasagna in the crock pot. Recipe HERE.

Awaiting: My chapter in a new book about pregnancy coming out soon. You're going to love it. Anytime I can talk/write about vaginas is a good day.

Experiencing: Deep hunger for a chocolate chip cookie. Or this - Chocolate Chip Cookies and Milk Cake:

Working on: Signing up for the Leadville Marathon as part of my training for the TransRockies Run. Who will join me? Who is a masochist? Who loves crying in pain and despair when they run? Hell, it's only 6,333 feet of climbing. Don't be a pussy your whole life.

Reading: Fates and Furies.

Not super far into it. Also on my list: City of Thorns, Fast Girl, A Little Life, Living with a Seal and Find a Way (Diana Nyad).

Listening to: Heidi lapping up water. The occasional sound of my own farts. Hoping to tune into the new Serial podcast soon.

Craving: Running in shorts and no sleeves. The good old days:

Hating: Not running in shorts. Ice on my roads. Frozen snot. My ass-icle that won't thaw out until May.

Loving: Following AwkwardFamilyPhotos on Instagram. It seriously never gets old:

Anticipating: Vegas. Ken and are heading there in 9 days to celebrate his 50th birthday. Yes I am married to a 50 year old man. He is such a cradle robber. I mean I am only 48.9 years old. I could practically be his daughter.

TBT to 4 years ago in Sin City.
Watching: Nurse Jackie. I have successfully binge watched the show on Netflix over the past 2 weeks. Ken has been a Nurse Jackie widow. I finished last night. Oh good Lord. I will miss you Jackie. And I hope I never become a prescription drug addict. It is a tough life.

Promoting: Blue Apron on the blog next week.Again.What can I say?It's a great service.

Avoiding: Negativity. Like the plague.


Feel free to play along if you'd like. Let me know the link in the comments.

What are you reading now?

Last show you binge watched? Before NJ it was Transparent

What race are you signing up for next?


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Runners: 16 Tips to Save Your Life

It's been four years.

January 7, 2012 - I got a call that my cousin, Sherry's, shoe was found along side of a road in Sidney, Montana where she had taken an early morning run. There was no sign of Sherry.

It would be two weeks before we found out what had happened through a confession by one of the killers. Sherry had been grabbed by two men, high on crack cocaine, who were on the side of the road in their Ford Explorer. They strangled her and later went to Walmart to buy tools to bury her. Her body was found two months later in a shallow grave near the North Dakota/Montana border.

When I went to Sherry's funeral, I visited  the sport where she was
abducted and ran there. It was right along this dirt path.

Sherry and I are the same age. Like me, she had two teenage children, a boy and a girl. Like me, she was married. Like me, she had one sibling and was very close to her parents who lived in the same town. I actually did not know Sherry all that well. We had spent time together a couple years prior to her death when my family visited her in Montana and at later at a wedding. We also saw each other when I was ten when we visited her family's ranch in Montana. We shared the same uncle and we shared the same sense of humor (farting, anyone?). We also shared a love for running and often messaged about that.

Summer of 2008. Sherry is in the red shirt on the right.

For a minute after Sherry died, I thought maybe I shouldn't run alone anymore. Nope. Not gonna happen. I do, however, have two steadfast rules:

  • No running in the dark by myself
  • No running in remote locations or trails by myself

I don't deviate from these rules.

When something horrible happens, it is human nature to think and rationalize why the same thing couldn't happen to us. If someone is running at midnight in a really bad part of town and they get attacked, one might think, "Well...duh...they shouldn't have been running there at that time." Yet, there are many instances, like in Sherry's case, where it was simply a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Sherry grew up in Sidney. These were her streets. Until a few years ago, Sidney had been a quiet and remote town with little crime. However, as more and more oil was discovered in the area, more and more people were brought in to work in the oil fields. People in Sidney will tell you that this is when problems began. Crime grew. People started locking their doors.

The two guys who attacked Sherry had driven up to Montana from Colorado the previous day. They were high on crack. They came to Sidney to work in the oil fields. That morning, they parked along the side of the road, looking to do something "bad" to a woman. Sherry ran by them and told them "Hi." They grabbed her and pulled her into their car.

This could be any of us.

I agree that the threat of bad things happening cannot paralyze us. We cannot stay locked inside of our homes, because that is absolutely NO way to live. But, we can take precautions that just might save our lives:
People say it’s not fair that women have to be more careful and are easier and more frequent targets than men. Fair or not fair, it’s a fact. Let’s deal with it the best we can while continuing to make efforts to take back our streets.

Any other tips to share on how to stay safe out there?


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

I Know 34 Things You Thought About on Your Run Today

Yeah, it looks gorgeous and all, but it's f'ing freezing.

I know I don't have to run five times a week, but it's what I do.

Ken: It's freezing. This is ridiculous. We don't have to go
Me: Yes, we do
Ken:Why? Why when our warm bed is so close.

I told Ken his next wife could be all fat and lazy and maybe then he would be finally happy. At least he can grow a beard to warm his face when it's negative-minus-hell degrees outside.

I don't want to be a broken record about the cold so I'm going to shut up now. But rumor has it that this week was not just cold in Colorado and Alaska and Siberia, but it was cold everywhere. So, wherever you are (shut up Hawaii, Mexico and Nevis), you feel my pain. Moving on.

I was thinking about something today while I ran. Sometimes I do think and sometimes I just don't know what I do. I think I spend a lot of time wondering how much longer I need to run and when I can rest again. According to this study, I am not alone.

Anyway, I agree with Oprah or Maya Angelou or Jesus or whoever said, "We are more alike than we are different." So, to me this means that we probably think similar things when we are running. Here are the top most common thoughts in my head during a run. Can you relate?

  1. This sucks. I'm not sure I'm up for this today.
  2. I'm so glad I decided to do this.
  3. How much further?
  4. Oh my God I need a bathroom RIGHT now. I'm turtling.
  5. Glad that urge passed.
  6. Why does running make me fart?
  7. Here comes another runner. I'm going to wave. They didn't wave back. WTF?
  8. Why don't other runners wave sometimes? I wonder if he/she is in a bad mood or is blind or hates me.
  9. What's for dinner tonight? What's for lunch today? What can I have for a snack? I wonder if there are any more Oreos left.
  10. How much further?
  11. Is that light going to turn green or stay red? Kind of hoping it stays red. I could use a rest but I don't want to be a pussy. I only want to stop if I'm forced to stop.
  12. I'm exhausted.
  13. I wonder how fast I'm going?
  14. I feel great.
  15. How much further?
  16. Does that car see me?
  17. I don't even really like running. 
  18. Is someone following me?
  19. I'm freezing.
  20. I shouldn't have had that chili cheese dog last night.
  21. Now I'm getting hot.
  22. Did I leave the oven on?
  23. Damn that was a slow mile.
  24. Wow, I'm speedy.
  25. The snot will just not.stop.flowing!
  26. My (insert: butt, IT band, Achilles, calf, foot, knee) hurts. Hope I'm not getting injured.
  27. Do I look good when I run? I think I look good. 
  28. I look horrible when I run. I'm sure my form sucks.
  29. Snot rocket. Nailed it.
  30. Is it true my odds are good of finding a dead body on this run?
  31. I hate this song.Skip. Why is it even on my playlist?
  32. Out of all those cars that passed me, did anyone know me?
  33. How much more can I eat today since I took this run?
  34. Wow, that was awesome. So glad I did it.

This just goes to show how evolved runners are. I mean consider the range of emotions and conflicting thoughts we encounter in just one little run! Clearly, we are complex and intellectual and better than the average person. High five, fellow runners.

Tell me ONE thing you think about when you run.