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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014 Finally in the Rear View Mirror: Some Hard Lessons to Take into 2015

I hope you all had a great Christmas and are ready to have a great new year!  I for one am so glad to be wrapping up 2014.  This is where I would usually check over my 2014 goals and see how I did.  I can tell you life got in the way of goals.  I will say the entire year did push me out of my comfort zone and that was one goal.  I will also say that many of the things we went through made me grateful for the people and good things in my life.  Other than that this year was not really about goals.

You may ask what have I been doing with my time off the last week or so.  I would like to say we have been off everyday having adventures.  We have done some of that, but we have also spent some needed time helping my mother and more needed time just getting over this year by watching movies, spending time together, and cuddling kitties.  Of course their has been running.  In fact lots of running.  As 2015 bore down on hubby and I, we realized we were far from our 1,000 miles for the year.  Catching up by running in a bunch of different places we don't get to very often has been very therapeutic.  I hit my 1,003 today and he is at 999.  The odometer will turn over on tomorrow's run.  We start the new year with ATC 2015 Resolution Run on New Years Day.

As we wrap up the year what are the big plans for 2015?  This year I have only one plan.  I will be present.  I will be present where I am when I am there and I will be grateful to be there.  I have no performance goals and no lofty career goals.  I just plan to be there and bring my whole self to the table whether a family event, caregiver responsibility, work, or fitness.  I think if I can do that 2015 will be a departure from 2014.

Grateful to be able to look ahead instead of back.  Wishing you and yours a happy, healthy New Year in 2015.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

When Consistency Pays Off

Happy Holidays or better known as, seriously you expect me to: clean the house, shop for your mother's boss's daughter's third cousin, bake a Yule Log from scratch, make the cookies for the entire family, make authentic Latkes for your Jewish half-brother, find the perfect gift for my brother-in-law, and get my run and workouts in?  Sound familiar?  Can you hear the sounds of "I Wish you a Merry Christmas" Hyphen Satisfying Solstice, Rockin' Ramadan, Quirky Kwanzaa, and a Happy Hanukkah.  All of this is to say December is the ultimate fitness roadblock.  Not only do you have all of this going on around you to fill all that free time you normally sit around wondering how to fill; every single person you know, and even some random strangers who don't know what else to do, are trying to feed you cookies, cupcakes, cider, hot chocolate, and candy.  Really at this point I would give my Kingdom, not much per say, to anyone who said "I made a salad for us all to celebrate the holidays."

All of that reminds me to be grateful to the trait I must often have a love hate relationship with my regimented nature.  This is where all that lack of spontaneity really starts to pay out like Vegas.  I love routine.  In fact were I not happily married I might consider having a pretty steamy affair with it.  I am not what you might call whimsical.  I am sure people wake up ad think, "today is a blank slate.  I have no idea what I plan to do.  Wonder where the wind will take me."  I am breaking out in a cold sweat just typing that.  I always know what I will be doing.  I don't leave things up to happenstance.  In fact me and happenstance are complete strangers.

With all of that said what does that have to do with fitness, running and the holidays.  I have a sound routine of running and strength training.  It is after 3 years an ingrained part of my day and my life.  When all the craziness that is December rolls around; I am able to fit the crazy into a schedule that already tees off with my exercise routine.  Because I know I have to run, I am less likely to end up so wasted at the office Christmas Party so I have to avoid direct eye contact until the desperate single girl begins weeping over the Valentine's cupcakes and my drunken Karaoke version of" Blue Christmas" is long forgotten.  See during this season of limited time and excess everything else it is "All about that Base."  You are welcome that that has now replaced "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" as the annoying soundtrack in your head! This is where the base of your decisions if they start with fitness will lead to your next good decision, no diving head first into a cheese ball.  As I said this where my fixation with the routine of running and working out really pays off.  That good decision leads to self-control and other good decisions.

Hey if you already jumped off the fitness bandwagon in pursuit of holiday happiness there is always New Years.  Hope you are having a healthy holiday season!

Today I am grateful to have found a great surprise gift for my hubby!!


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Making Adjustments




This is so appropriate for today.  I was tired today.  You know that getting in workouts, helping the family, squeezing in one last work trip, holiday shopping, and all that regular stuff you need to do to have a life is sometimes tiring.  You know when you notice that?  Around 4:15 AM when you ask yourself, "am I who gun control advocates are talking about when they say don't give guns to the mentally ill?"  I mean even the mentally ill are probably still asleep at 4:15 in the morning, two weeks before Christmas, when it is 30 degrees out.  By the way that is fact, because I was on the street at 4:15 today in 30 degree weather and I did not see anyone, mentally balanced or unbalanced.  Oh yeah except my reflections in a giant blow up snow globe.  

So not only did I not want to run today but strength training was also on tap.  I know...don't be jealous.  So this is where I tell you I blew off my RW Holiday Running Streak and ate the last of the soft batch cookies hubby bought last week.  Wrong!  This is where I mention that life is about minor adjustments that make the impossible possible.  So I thought I was going to run 3 miles.  Instead I ran 2.5.  Still one mile is the streak requirement.  How bad ass is exceeding that by 150%?.  Oh yeah don't hate my math skills.  In my next blog I will expound on Pythagorean theorem.  Not really. Not because it would bore you to death; mostly because I am pretty sure I don't have any idea what that is anymore. .  I am actually going to talk about how the simple hobby of  running quadruples your laundry.  That should be one of life's great mysteries, like how do two socks go into the dryer but only one come out.  

You may also be wondering if I completed my strength training, or maybe your not; but I am going to tell you anyway.  Know why? Because this is a running and fitness blog and that is what I talk about. I did go to the gym after work but instead of my usual 35-45 minutes, I lowered my weights and did 25 minutes with 5 minutes of stretching.  I figured it was better than not going and it seemed more doable.  Sometimes you have to adjust.  One of my favorite quotes " Don't let the perfect become the enemy of the good."  Lots of times at fail at that.  Today was not one of them.  Hope all of my friends and family appreciate the gift of my good health and continued presence in their life; because if I don't get Christmas shopping soon that is what they are getting for Christmas and it is a $%^$# to wrap.

Today I am grateful for a sense of humor.  You may disagree.   


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Week in Review

This has been a pretty good week.  Today was day 23 of my RW Holiday Running Streak and hubby and I headed out for a nice 6 mile run.  I have really been enjoying my runs since I made the decision to stick with shorter races in the coming year.  I am just going to focus on consistency and health.

I am also excited that  I managed to keep my streak even though I had to fly to Denver for a quick overnight trip on Thursday.


View from my hotel Denver at Christmas




I also had a pretty fun week because I got new Sockwell Compression socks.  I don't know about you, but I love getting new running stuff.  Especially if they are cute.  And these felt great and were super cute.  I tested my new compression before heading out to Denver on Thursday with a hill run.  It went great I was much faster than I anticipated being.  I also got in two gym strength sessions and I squeezed in a quick strength session today with free weights, some planks, and push ups.  

I am going to do a little recovery run tomorrow and hit the gym after work.  I also discovered that visiting my Chiropractor before getting on my flight made a big difference.  My hip and legs did not feel nearly as tight as usual.  I will definitely try that in the future.  

Hubby and I both have two more weeks of work then two weeks off.  I always look forward to this time every year to recharge, but I must admit I am looking forward to it more this year.  

Yesterday we wrapped up the ATC season at the mile run.  Both hubby and I also collected our Bunny Awards for running every race in the Grand Prix season.  It was my second his fourth.  

I hope you had a good week and are finding a way to squeeze in exercise during the holiday season and some good nutrition among all the temptations.  

Today I am grateful that was my last trip of the year.  I am home with hubby and kitties for the rest of the year!!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

It has been a While - Trying to Get Back


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It has been a while since I have posted anything on my blog.  Ironically my blog is titled runin' my life, but my life has been running me.  At least for the last few months.  I chose to pull back while I tried to recenter myself.

This has been a really tough year.  Turns out to be not at all what I planned at the beginning of the year, as we now close in on the end of the year.  I am excited to put it behind me and also weirdly grateful for the challenges and chaos it brought.  That is why I love this song.  I feel like women sometimes spend so much time trying to make sure everyone else is happy, making sure everyone likes us...we rarely ask do I like me?

After this year of tough runs and bad races, missed goals, lost family members, illness, and new responsibilities I think I realized somewhere in there I have to like me.  Even though I have not been blogging I have been running and I have been doing my strength training.  For a while I wasn't doing it with a happy heart, more like checking a box.  I guess that is where I am grateful that running and fitness became a habit, so I could at least get it done, because that is what I do; until I could do it because I wanted to do it.

Knock on wood I think that is where I am finally.  I have been enjoying my exercise lately.  Wanting to do it, getting up happily instead of begrudgingly.  I have made some decisions about next year.  No big distance races.  I am going to focus on 5Ks and 10Ks with my husband,  I enjoy some distance running but I will do that on my own, for myself when I feel like it, not because a race plan is breathing down my neck.  For me it is time to get back to the basics of fun running.

I also hope to get back to blogging about the crazy things a peri-menopausal, way less than perfect, 45 year old nonathletic geek, runs into on an imperfect journey to stay healthy despite a genetic minefield!  Here is hoping your journey has been smoother than mine and to finding the fun and the humor is liking ourselves.

I am still grateful for many things, not the least of which is waking up everyday a little worse for the wear and wiser!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Taking a Break and Rediscovering Running

I have been MIA with my blog for a couple of weeks.  I have been trying to let go of structure related to my running.  Lately I have been feeling a little off with my running.  Since I started running I have always found it, with the exception of the occasional bad run, to be very centering and something I looked forward to everyday.  This summer the weather was just brutal and I had a recurring injury with my arm.  I have been dealing with other fun "woman in my forties" issues and running was starting to feel like a job, a frustrating one too, because I wasn't meeting my goals.

So what is a girl to do?  I don't know what all girls do, but this girl decided to first cut some things out.  One was the blog.  I like to use my blog to be upbeat, inspire other non-athletic geeky girls to give running a shot, and occasionally be a little funny!  I wasn't in a place to do any of that.  What I did not want this blog to be is a whine fest!  Wine Fest would be fine, especially a nice Merlot, but constant "why can't I find my groove" is just not my style.  The other thing I did was let go of goals.  I had a miserable half in September and Silver Comet at the end of October, and a sub-2 goal, was weighing me down like running underwater.  So I just decided to let the goals go.  I originally started running for fun and fitness; guess what, I can do that if I never run a half in less than 2 hours.  I heard Ghandi never ran a half in less than two hours and he seemed to accomplish quite a lot.  To be fair, I eat a lot more than Ghandi, so I do need to run.

I also decided my long runs would be what felt good.  I already ran 13 miles last month.  I am pretty sure I can do it again on a trail I run every week.  I incorporated more runs without music.  Just put on my shoes, and clothes of course, or I would be typing this from jail.  By the way I am not typing this from jail!  I also was on a long run last week and met a new running friend.  She is also training for a half.  We run a similar pace and we are going to try and meet up again to do a long run together.  Since hubby caps at 6 miles this was great.  She really helped me power through the end of my nine miler last week.

Operation just relax and remember this is fun culminated in a beautiful Cartersville 10K with my favorite running partner today.  It was 50 degrees, windy and absolutely beautiful.  We laughed and talked our way to 56 minute finish.  Not my fastest, but definitely one of the most satisfying races.  I am back on the track of loving running.  I have kept up my strength training and now instead of forcing myself out the door and to the gym I am again happily enjoying that time.

I am trying to catch up on your blogs too.  I kind of just cut all of it off for a little bit.  I will be busy at a conference next week, but hope to get back to blogging regularly when I return!  I am grateful today for a beautiful run!  Hope you are enjoying everything you are training for, otherwise what's the point.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Good Week - Women Stuff

It was a good week this week for health and fitness, not so much for work.  It was a busy stressful week, or maybe it just seemed busier and more stressful because hubby, the teacher, was on fall break and that makes you look at him in bed at 4 AM as you lace up and think, really?

I was back on track this week and got in all my workouts running and strength, and they felt pretty good. I cooked everyday and we were back to mostly veggies and fruit meals.   I also had my physical and after they stuck me nine times trying to get a vein for blood we had a serious discussion about my need to get a colonoscopy right away.  I will be following up on that.  But I also had an interesting talk with my Dr. about "that time" in a middle aged woman's life and we discussed the impact that could have on my running and fitness goals.  I had never really thought about the fact that while my body finds a new balance I may have to change up my goals, because I am asking an awful lot of my body.   That kind of tracks with my running lately.  I have been consistent but definitely my performance and pace has been a little off my normal.  We both agreed the change would be harder if I was not as rigorous about my exercise and diet, but that I needed to understand that maybe I should shift my focus off performance.

I think it was a good perspective.  I will continue to be consistent and finish all the races I have committed to, but I might alter my goals and just run for fun and fitness.  Who knows what might happen.  Eventually my body will find its new Chi and I can reevaluate big time goals.  After all I did not start running for times and medals.  I started running to be with my husband and I kept running to avoid the health issues and bad choices endemic in my family.

Today we enjoyed a beautiful breezy late morning 6.75 miles of fun together, no times no pressure.  Back at it this week.  I plan to do a couple of morning runs without music and enjoy the sounds of morning in my neighborhood.  It can be very centering.  I hope your training week went well.

Today I am grateful to see cooler weather on the horizon.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Hump Day, Reminders and Getting Back at it




It is mid-week or as the camel likes to say "hump day!"  I have been back in town since Thursday and trying to make up for a sluggish week last week.  So far so good.  I have gotten in strength training Monday and Wednesday at the gym and my morning three milers in everyday this week.

Also since I have come home I have been back on my regular diet which helps.  Lots of fruits and veggies and healthy home cooked meals.  I think it is not that we have set backs or situations that make healthy choices difficult; it is about whether we can get back on track.  I feel like I have.  Also I don't know about you but I only feel like myself when I am doing the things that make me feel healthy and happy.

Speaking of choices, I got to spend some time with my mother and sister today.  I had to take my mom to see my Dad's grave and the marker for my brother had been put in so we went to bring flowers.  Spending the day with my family is always a good reminder about the value of making good health choices.  Lots of my friends make fun of me, lovingly of course. Asking if I miss eating a cheeseburger or pointing out only crazy people get up at 4 AM and run every morning.   The truth is those things don't seem like sacrifices; if you have ever seen the results of bad health choices played out over and over again.  A cheeseburger and an extra hour of sleep will never be as important as good health and all the rewards and independence it brings with it.

Tomorrow is a rest day I have my annual physical tomorrow morning so I have to fast until 9 AM so I did not think a 4 AM run was a good idea if I could not refuel.  Tomorrow I tell my doctor that my brother died of colon cancer 5 months ago at 46.  I suspect "someone" will be setting up a colonoscopy soon.  We shall see!  Hope you are having a good week so far.

Today I am grateful for many things.  Visiting your relatives at a cemetery will do that.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

What a Week: Tales of a Banana Slug!

I am not cut out for a sedentary life!!  I got to experience what one feels like this week.  I had to attend a vendor sponsored conference which meant everything was mandatory and the days were long with every minute scheduled.  Day started at 6 AM and ended at 10 PM.  I was there Monday-Thursday.  I wear a Garmin FR15 with the fitness tracker.  I normally, even at work, get between 9,900-12,000 steps a day.  While at the conference I  got 3,000 or less.  Not to mention there was hardly a vegetable or piece of fruit to be found.  That may be a side effect of being in a male dominated field.  It was an alcohol, meat and potatoes bonanza!

I am a pretty health conscience girl so I don't usually experience that kind of sedentary life with no healthy food.  Even though I am normally really active and healthy, by Thursday I could already feel that I felt sluggish and less like myself.  I can see how if you get in that mode you might not have enough energy to turn it around, but also I can't imagine anything, short of a brief work trip, forcing me into that position long term.  I also could not be on the road all the time.  I like being home and have really set up my own life around my health and fitness priorities.

As soon as my plane landed I headed to the gym for an hour of weight training then to my chiropractor.  I ran a quick one miler with hubby after dinner and was back out for my pre-dawn run on Friday.  I was able to cook us a healthy meal Thursday and the rest of the week.  This week, more than any of my other travel, gave me a glimpse of why I make the choices I make.  It came at a good time.  I have been struggling with motivation and some injuries but I felt really recommitted when I came back.  All of sudden what seemed like an obligation felt like a privilege, after I was not allowed to do it.  It is amazing how your perspective can turn around.

I guess I may have needed a less intense week after my half, and to find my love of all things healthy again.  I am back on track.  Got my strength training in on Thursday and Saturday and runs in everyday.  I am happy to be back in my routine and feeling like myself again.  Now to train for my next half marathon.

Today I am grateful that most of the time my lifestyle allows me to make good health a priority.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Diva Half - Running in the Rainforest

Yesterday was the Diva Half Marathon in Peachtree City.  First I chose this half because of my theme for the year, to push myself past my comfort level.  I knew this race would be hot and I typically do my half marathons well into the fall or winter.  I went into this with a rough training season, lots of injuries and really hot weather.  That being said I was realistic about this half.  I was not racing it, just using it as a tune up long run before Silver Comet half at the end of October.  I figured how many times will you do a long training run and get a big blinged out medal.  Believe me the medal is huge.

What about the race.  It was a mixed experience.  First the start was tough.  Here is the thing about these travel races, meaning they just go from town to town.  They are different than local races because they don't know the little nuances that make a place a place.  One thing about Atlanta, never choose a parking location with only one way in and out.  My husband and I were on the road accessing the parking for 50 minutes trying to get three miles.  We ended up getting there about 25 minutes before the race and had to catch the shuttles to take us 2.5 miles to the start.  I had about 15 minutes before my wave 1 started to use the porta-potties.  With 1500 5K runners and 2300 half marathoners you can imagine that did not happen.  Also they had no one manning their social media to give updates about if the shuttles would run longer or start times would be held due to the parking disaster.  Yes the shuttles ran longer; no they did not hold the start times as I was running down an embankment as they yelled "last call for Wave 1."  I had no prep time.  I was trying to start my Garmin find my music while catching up to the tail end of my group.  I finally pulled off to get my technology straightened out.  Turns out I did not need to worry about that since we self seeded and let me tell you a number of people self-seeded themselves in the wrong wave as I caught up with my group at  .25 miles and many were already walking.

I tried to shake off the start.  I mean I had to run 13 miles might as well try to enjoy it.  The first 5 miles were pretty good they were on a tree lined street, wide enough to accommodate the number of runners, easy to pass those that maybe should have been in a different wave.  Then we entered onto the golf cart paths.  Peachtree City has 100 miles of Golf Cart Paths it is the Golf Cart capital.  Who knew, right?  The good, my Friend Laura was working that water station I had not seen her since college.  So super fun to see her and get water from her sons.  The bad, did not know the next 8 miles would be on narrow, winding, poorly maintained golf cart paths.  It was clogged with runners so you really could not pass anyone.  For awhile I was following this girl, but she was getting more frustrated and more rude, yelling "move over! Let me through!"  Since I was afraid folks thought we were together I backed off and just reminded myself this was supposed to be a training run.  Who cares about time.  Just relax.  It was a good reminder, especially as I continued running and encountered several runners who fell because of the torn up path or were passed out or hunched over because of the heat and humidity.  Yeah, you really aren't living unless you run 13 miles in 100% humidity with 2300 people.  I myself had to slow down a couple of times and take a little walk break around mile 10 because I could feel that I was too hot.

Diva had plenty of water stations with porta-potties and Gatorade about ever 2 miles.  We needed it.  They did not have enough medics for the extreme weather and the varied running experience of their participants.  I was at mile 12 when I passed a woman sitting on the ground.  Several people ran past her.  I stopped to see if she needed help.  She said she fell and thought she broke her foot.  Could I send help from the next stop, which happened to be the tiara and boa stop.  I sped up, because finally I had some room and also I wanted to get her some help.  I finished the race in 2:16 number 362 of 2300 runners.  My slowest half, but I finished, and for the conditions I felt pretty good.

The fun, they did have tiaras and boas for your photos as you crossed the finish line.  They also had champagne and the biggest heaviest medal I have ever seen.  They had plenty of shuttles to take us back to the field where we were parked.  I was surprised by the experience.  I had thought it would be this hugely supportive women's running experience, but most of the women I met were pretty standoffish and I saw a lot of folks blow past people who needed help and none of the racers really lending each other any support, may have been different further back.

The toughest thing for me personally was the heat.  I was soaked through with sweat head to toe.  My wet shorts and tank caused some vary uncomfortable chafing even with Body Glide.  Also my shoes were so wet from sweat that the extreme downhills on the golf cart paths I felt like I would lose my balance.  I did check getting completely naked in a field off my bucket list.  My clothes were so soaked I had to change, had no idea we would be parking in a field.  Hubby used the sun shades for the car to block me while I wriggled out of what was then a wet suit but started as a running outfit.  It was great to see my husband standing cheering when I rounded the corner to the finish.  I never get tired of that, even if it was pretty slow for me.  I still think persevering in the heat and humidity will pay off for me at Silver Comet.  The shirt is a dry fit hot pink which I love.  Ultimately I would not do this race again, but I was glad I got to experience it.  Maybe the heat and humidity just made it too hard to have a girl power kind of experience.  My chafing is healing and took a short two miler with hubby today to shake things out.  Flying to Florida tomorrow for work.

Grateful that I could make it through 13 miles!  Hope you had a good weekend!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Seriously? I am Running 13 Miles Tomorrow?

It is official!  Everyone in my house spent the day getting ready for the Diva Half tomorrow.  Don't worry, unless Lena gets up at 4:45 tomorrow with 4 little running shoes on and drags her fluffy tail 13 miles she can't wear the shirt she commandeered today.

I have taken a little blogging break.  Did not have much to write and had been focused on getting back into loving my fitness routine.  Hope I am there; since tomorrow I am running the Peachtree City Diva Half Marathon.  Let's hear it for girl power!!  I will write up the race of course.

I can give them a thumbs up for being green!!!  Everything for the race instructions and discounts are electronic.  The little environmentalist in me loves that.  Also kudos for great and consistent communication and the race number pick up and expo was simple, easy, well staff, and swathed in a sea of pink.  I took complete rest days yesterday and today and went to see my chiropractor today after picking up my packet and number.  I am actually finally feeling injury free and well rested so hopefully that will make for a pleasant run.  I am using this as a training run for Silver Comet in October.  Not going to push to hard.  Plus it is supposed to be pretty warm and humid.

Also just s we are clear that I am crazy.  I do the half Saturday, fly to Florida Monday for a conference, fly home Thursday and report right to the Kaiser Corporate Challenge 5K since I am on the County Wellness Committee.  That all sounded like a good idea a couple of months ago.  Oh well should make for some interesting posts.

Today I am grateful for my husband who will be getting up at 4:45 to cheer me on tomorrow, even if Lena stays in bed!  If you are racing this weekend good luck and if you are training hang in there.  This was my roughest training period for a race.  Hopefully pushing through will help me tomorrow.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

OMG! Comedy of Errors!

Today was a crazy day with a good friend at work.  We had a meeting in downtown Atlanta and we took her company vehicle.  We are stuck on Interstate 75 in typical Atlanta morning rush hour traffic.  I keep hearing a ding.  I ask her what it is.  Then I look at the dash.  We are out of gas!  We coast over to a shoulder and fortunately while I try and arrange AAA help, the DOT Hero unit pulls behind us and gets us back on our way.  We are only a few minutes late for our meeting.  GDOT Hero Units and those who work on them rock!!!

We are downtown for our three hour meeting.  We are very focused on finding a gas station.  Maybe a little too focused!  We get to the car and my friend is frantically rummaging through her purse.  "Where are my keys?  Have you seen my keys?"  We head back from the parking garage retrace our steps.  Leave her business card with everyone at the facility and head back to the car. This is the discussion that followed, if it gives you a flavor for the day.

My friend: Now what are we going to do?  Stand here by the car?  Did I drop them by the car?
Me: We don't need to stand here by the car.
Friend: Why not?  I don't have the keys.
Me: No, but you also did not put your window up when you locked the car.

Suffice it to say we ended up calling back to the office to get someone to rescue us.  Of course we called 10 minutes too soon.  Because 10 minutes after placing the embarrassing call that we were sweltering in a downtown Atlanta parking garage, the facility called and said someone turned in her keys.  We called back her office, cancelled the rescue mission, and headed back.  Of course the trip back also involved our Waze App, a super small downtown gas station, an angry Atlanta Gas Light employee, and our total lack of knowledge of which side the gas tank was on in the vehicle.

In short today I am grateful to be home and not sleeping in her company car!!  On the bright side the trekking around for keys got me way over my step goal for today.  I was still able to get to the gym for my second strength training session of the week and I had already had my run in the morning.

On the workout side this has been a good week.  On the wind down before Diva.  Just running easy.  I saw my chiro today after the gym.  I needed it after today!  I think I will see him next Friday right before the half for my weekly appointment.

I hope you had a less stressful day.  At least my friend is funny and we are both able to laugh at ourselves.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Atlanta's Finest 5K and Other Odds and Ends

I have not done a blog this week, mostly because I did not really have anything to write about.  Though you may not believe it I don't like to just ramble pointlessly, when you could be reading some great bloggers who have something to share.   For the third year we did one of our favorite races of the year.  The Atlanta's Finest 5K, a.k.a. The Safest 5K in the world, because it benefits the Atlanta PD. That place is crawling with cops!  It is a great race because lots of local police teams run and they chant their cadence and work as a team. That is really inspiring.  Plus it starts and ends at World of Coke/Centennial Olympic Park. It is also cool to see ATL's cadet class run and chant with their instructors.

My husband loves it because it is the race where he gets to highlight his wacky sense of humor by bringing out his Reno 911 shirt and his fake police badge.  I know what you are thinking, but he is all mine, ladies.  The race this year had a new course.  Though I never thought the previous course was very hilly, this is Atlanta, everything has hills.  They rerouted it and made it flatter and faster.  This was not PR for me.  I just wanted a little speed workout before the Diva half.  I did not want to burn out my legs.  That and Atlanta this week is a lot like living on the sun, or as a friend of mine said "Good Morning Vietnam! We have 213% humidity!"  Of course my husband thinks it feels like home.  The race was hot, but honestly I expected worse so I was pleasantly surprised.  Still at the water stop took a sip and dumped the rest on the back of my neck.

Hubby and decided to run together.  We finished in 27 minutes 8:47/mile which is pretty good for conditions.  I ended up 4th in my AG, which is not bad.  I wasn't really racing because today I knew I had my last mid-distance run before Diva.  Also every race is better when we run together.  I mean I started running so we could share a hobby and both get healthier.  This race was really well organized, kind of a return to the Atlanta Track Club we love.  It also had a great shirt, though they clearly define small differently than I do.  I am looking for a nice belt; then it will make a fine dress.  The proceeds go to ATL PD and they make nearly every race we do possible so we love helping them out.

In mile two we were behind the Atlanta SWAT team.  They were chanting.  We wanted to stay with them but once they said, "My grandpa is 92 he does PT better than you."  I knew it was time to pass them.  I am not 92!

 Running and weight training were fun again this week and I felt like my old self.  All my goals were met.  I even went for a strength session after the race yesterday.  I am loving belonging to a gym again!

Diva is less than 2 weeks away.  Officially no more runs over 3 miles now until the big day.  I don't plan to go all out. Using it as a training run, but I look forward to the empowering experience of running with all women.

This week I ran everyday but Monday and hit the gym three times.  I finished my 5 miler today in the blistering heat since I got out later than I planned, but I stuck it out.

Today I am grateful to feel healthier and be enjoying exercise again.  I have cross training and strength training on the agenda for tomorrow after work.  That also means the luxury of sleeping until 5:30 AM.  I am grateful for that too!!

How is your fall race training going?  Folks on Silver Comet were looking serious today as all our goal races come bearing down on us!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

What a Difference a Week Makes

A friend did not believe all my running stuff, including Mace, is Pink.  Also a 10 mile run in August heat always sounds like a good idea before you start.


Last week I was fully convinced that I was totally out of shape and hated running.  It was a rough training week and the first time in forever I took two rest days.  This week was a whole different story.  My body felt better and all my workouts went according to plan.  Of course it may help that I did not have to stop every mile to either clean up blood under my arm or stretch my left calf out.  Running is sometimes an ugly sport and it certainly was for me.

This week I made all of my strength training days at the gym.  I can really tell a difference on my runs now that I am more regimented and serious about my strength training.  Not to mention my abs are little tighter, and who is going to complain about that.  The week had been going well, but with the rough time I have been having and the heat I was still nervous about my planned 10 miler today.

Days like today make me even more grateful to have a husband who runs.  I know he knew I had been having a rough time.  He suggested we do my long run down at the Beltline to look at art and explore.  He said he would do 6 with me then I could finish up and he would go take reference pictures for the lesson he is doing with his kids on graffiti inspired art.  It was great to have him.  First he kept me slower and we explored some new areas.  That always makes a long run better.  I stuck to my goal of between 10:30-11/min miles.  It was beautiful out but a little warm by the end.  He was also great about getting up on a Sunday at 7:30 AM so I did not have to run in the heat of the day.

Post 10.2.  Still feeling okay

All in all a good week with 26 miles under my belt, and my double digit run done before Diva Half.  This coming Saturday is one of my favorite ATC races the Atlanta's Finest 5K to benefit the police Benevolent Society.  It is so cool the cadet class runs it while chanting cadence.  I am sure hubby will pull out his Reno 911 shirt, because that is how he rolls.

I hope you had a good training week.  I am on the downhill now until Diva.  Race on Saturday and probably a slow easy 5 mile recovery run Sunday.

Today I am grateful for my husband who helped to make the 10 miler today doable and gave up sleeping in on Sunday!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Calling My Mojo

I hope this is right.  It has been a rough couple of weeks with some injuries, time crunch, and just being generally tired.  I have actually been dreading my runs and thinking I can't believe I am about to run a half marathon.  So what do you do when you are just not feeling it?  I can only speak for me.

1. Took a few rest days
2. Downloaded some new tunes on Rock My Run
3. Went to the gym for some strength training
4. Shortened some morning runs
5. Moved some runs to after work so I could sleep in.
6. Kept reminding myself, you like this remember.
7. Went to my chiropractor

So did all of this help me find my Mojo?  It helped I think.  Really all secrets revealed, what really helped was just lacing up, even when I did not feel like it.  Okay especially when I did not feel like it and hitting the road.Today I had no pain and though I won't say I found my Mojo completely, he definitely heard me calling.  Here's to the times we just keep on keeping on until inspiration returns.

How do you get back in the swing?

Today I am grateful for a pain free run.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Surprisingly Smooth

To be perfectly honest I was dreading today's run.  I doubted I could hit any of the training goals, because that is the kind of week it has been.  Sometimes we surprise ourselves.  I spent a good part of the morning trying to shake off the week.  Sometimes if you take that mental energy with you, you are done before you start.  Also helped that hubby decided to start the first half of his three miler with me.  That helped get me in the groove and far enough down the road that turning around would be an effort.  Surprisingly, I felt pretty good.  The infection under my arm is still healing but was a lot better.  My calf felt fine.

I had a couple of goals for this run:
On feet for 90 minutes
Accomplish at least 8 miles
Keep a slow even pace around 10 min. miles

I am happy to say I achieved all of those.  With warm up and cool down I hit 8.5 and it took 90 minutes.  Running averaged around 10 min/mile.  Overall I was happy.  I did loose my bandage from my arm about 3 miles in but it felt fine so I pressed on and got it done.

It was hot and 100% humidity, but at least the predicted rain held off.  Also the intermittent clouds made the run more bearable.  Lots of folks on Silver Comet today.  Oh yeah I don't know how much more safe I can be.  There was a Cobb SWAT Tactical vehicle on the left hand side of the trail as I ran back.  A subtle message to anyone planning to attempt any funny business.

For this week I will gt back to regular strength training three times this week, and next weekend get a 10 milere under my belt before Diva half.  If I can get that done I will be ready for Diva. Tomorrow I plan to hit the gym after work and do a short 2 mile recovery run on the treadmill.  I get to sleep in and give my tired legs a little extra rest time.

Hope everyone has a great training week.  Stamina and endurance, those are the goals for the week.  What are yours?

Today I am grateful that my cats are happy and healthy.  Frankie had a good check up at the vet and he seems to be handling his kidney disease well according to his vet.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Training This Week... Sucked

This week just sucked.  As I hit four weeks before Diva Half I was all geared up to kick it up a notch and then, oh yeah my body reminded me I am old!  So first I have been dealing with periodic cysts under my am from a blocked sweat gland.  This week it was super painful.  Picture above is me toughing out the Jog Days 5K today after my husband mercifully ran ahead so I could push through and get this one  in the books without the guilt of holding him back.  In case you are wondering it is way harder to run without moving your right arm at all.  Just to add to the fun this week for no apparent reason I woke up Thursday AM with pain in my left calf and I could feel a knot.  Nothing like racing in calf sleeves in a simulated rain forest climate.

So the impact of all of this lead me to two rest days Wednesday and Friday.  A 30:28 on Jog Days 5 K today and only two strength training days.  I still have a long run on tap for tomorrow.  I will spare you the gory details but my painful cyst did not survive my race today even when I was not moving my arm.  After a messy day I should have my least painful run of the week tomorrow, at least my arm should be less painful anyway.

I will fill you in on the run.  Hopefully it won't be as ugly as this week.  Oh well next week is another opportunity.

Hope your fall race training is going better than mine.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Rest Days


Theme for today!  Any guesses?  That's right I am tired.  My body, my legs, my mind; so tomorrow I will be doing something I have not done in months.  I am taking a rest day.  That means no strength training, no run, no walking for miles.  I am just going to get up and go to work.  Oh yeah also I will see my chiro for my weekly appointment.  I think a rest day will help me power through the rest of my strength training sessions this week, my race on Saturday, and my scheduled long run on Sunday.  The idea of all of those without a rest day is frankly exhausting.  Plus I did a lot of leg work today with my strength training I need a day to marinate, don't I?

Do you think rest days are valuable?  How often do you rest?  Today I am grateful for laughter with friends, family and colleagues.  Who isn't right?  Hope your week is going well.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Oh Yeah I am Running 13 Miles in a Month

This week was pretty good for training, but this weekend was the most focused one I have had since my crazy month of July started.  I got a run in everyday this week and weekly mileage was back up at 23 miles after a couple of weeks below 20.  I also got my three strength days in, finishing up today with upper body and core after our 10K run at the River.  My workout week runs Mon-Sun.  I feel like getting a little speed run yesterday strength on Friday and Sunday and getting a much less painful long run in today it was pretty successful.  Also being back home I was able to cook and we were able to eat healthier and I could bring my lunch back to veggie lunches with fruit.

I think I am back on the train, but their is definitely a train bearing down on me from the other side.  Diva Half is exactly a month from this weekend.  Time to buckle down or the Sunday after that race won't be a funday!  We have the Jog Days 5K on Saturday.  I told hubby h should run his own race without me.  I know I held him back at Decatur Dekalb a few weeks ago.  Also I am going to run Jog Days for fun, my big workout next weekend will be Sunday.  I need to do 8 miles and then 10 next weekend. Then I should be Diva ready.  Especially because my plan is to use Diva as a long training run for Silver Comet Half.  I should be able to get my run done in 10-10:30 min/mile.  That's my goal just slow and easy.

Back at it next week.  Early morning run to start Monday as usual.  Today I am grateful for my hubby who always supports me and pushes me.  He is a great training partner!!  Hope you had a good week!!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Tragedy on My Local Trail


This week has been busy at work but pretty good for running and getting better with strength training.  I ran everyday and made it to the gym twice for strength, hoping to go tomorrow after our long run, we have planned.  Today hubby, who is now back to school, had to go to his school and finish painting some Gator Prints on the walkway for the kiddos.  So I headed out to Silver Comet Trail to do my three miles.  I had not really intended to do a training run, but felt pretty good so I went for it.  It was remarkably easy, compared to the 4 mile race a couple of week ago.

This week was yet another sad one for the running community.  Tuesday on Silver Comet Trail, a popular mixed use trail that runs from Cobb County all the way to the state line, a woman, Tina Waddell, was out doing what many of us do, getting in her after work run when a man approached her from the front took her into the woods and beat her to nearly unrecognizable.  She somehow managed to fight him off and make her way back to the well traveled trail where a biker found her.

Today I ran Silver Comet,  I live right on Silver Comet, in fact it is one of the reasons we moved here.  I have never felt unsafe on Silver Comet and I have done my long half marathon training runs all by myself, of course because my husband does not do long distance.  Today I wore my "I Run Like a Girl Hope You Can Keep Up" T-shirt in honor of Tina.  All the women on the trail were "saying love your shirt" and giving thumbs up.  There is definitely a different vibe on the trail.  Everyone is friendlier, less wrapped up in their own training.   It is like everyone is watching out for everyone. I think the fact that it happened in broad daylight, and on a spot so many of us run it made everyone think and united all of us.

It is a good reminder to stay aware of your surroundings, but also an alarming example that it does not just happen at night on an isolated road, and even aware you may not be able to fend off someone hell bent on hurting you.  Some people are bold and crazy.  I for one won't let some nut stop me and I am pretty sure right now Silver Comet is the safest place in the ATL to run.  Still as a runner and a woman my heart goes out to Tina and I am also so awed by her strength that she fought back and somehow got herself to safety.  Enjoy running ladies, but be careful.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Half Marathon Training in the Heat

I was going to call this post "The Day I almost Killed My Husband" but I have post-run photographic proof that he made it to the bar for lunch and a well earned beer.
He looks pretty happy for a dead guy doesn't he?  That being said my first half marathon training run was not an overwhelming success today.  First we were running somewhere I love to run the Atlanta Beltline and Piedmont Park, but I forgot there  is little to no shade for the entire run.  Also we got out the door way too late. Note to self "that cup of coffee was not worth it."  It was almost 11 AM and the heat index was already over 90 when we started, higher than that when we finally called it at 5.5 miles.  Or as my husband said filling out his DailyMile, " I am just going to say 100 degrees.  Oh yeah, and that my wife tried to kill me today."  I don't think a five and a half mile run on the sun is technically a method of attempted homicide, but who am I to deprive him of his dramatic flair.

It was a tough run.  I think several things, including the weather, conspired against us:  brought no water, there are stops on the route but not enough, I was running too fast for conditions, and no shade.  I should have been about 2 minutes slower than an average run that should have been over 11 min/mile.  I did not get there until the end, when just so he knows, I also thought I was going to die.  I knew I was dehydrated and we were both over heating.  We finally just called it and walked the last 1/4  mile back to the car.  I was planning over 6 to at least 7, except you probably would not be reading this because I would probably just be getting out of the ER. It was a tough run.  Shows how little heat conditioning I have been doing.  My next long run will take place much earlier in the day and on a shadier route.

At least we know how to wrap up our misery in style!  We headed right out to the rooftop bar at Six Feet Under a local eatery.  Fried Green Tomatoes, the ATL skyline backdrop, a Belgian Beer for me, and Amber Ale for the hubby, and a yummy lunch and we were ready to wrap up the last day of hubby's summer vacay.  Back to work for him.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Out of Race Shape

Last Saturday before heading to Savannah and the conference we did the Decatur Dekalb 4 Miler with Atlanta Track Club.  This was our first race since April and I definitely felt it.  Usually ATC has an extensive race schedule with at least one race a month, bat as discussed previously they are making changes.  We also have some additional races we like or that are for really good causes so we usually race pretty regularly.  Don't get me wrong.  We aren't competitive or anything but we are definitely front of the mid pack runners.  I typically place somewhere in the top 6 of my AG in most of the ATC races.  You probably have experienced this phenomenon, even if you aren't "really racing" you are pushing yourself more than if you were out for a regular run around your neighborhood.  I mean people are there.

Typically regular racing also substituted for speed training.  Since during a race I would be pushing the pace shooting for negative splits, etc.  Well I definitely felt the 3 month racing hiatus.  This is not even a very hilly course but I definitely found myself dragging around mile 2.  Of course it was also pouring down rain and the course was slick and my shoes were soaked as well as the rest of me.  After mile 2 I found my rhythm and a second wind and was able to finish strong and feel pretty good afterwards.

I ended up with an average 9 min/mile pace a little slower than my race pace.  I finished 6 in my AG.  Although after April I moved up into the next age group and those ladies are really fast so I suspect I will be finishing further back in the AG pack.  That is fine.  I am really only racing against myself.  It is just that last Saturday I was definitely kicking my own ass.  Oh well guess that means I should do more actual speed training or just let it go.  We have a couple of races coming up, not the least of which is the Diva Half, 5 weeks from today!  I better start doing more long runs, especially in the heat!

Today I am grateful to be back home after spending most of July on the road.  Also happy to be back to the gym, regular running, and healthy eating.

How do you stay in race shape?  Is it a contest against the clock, other runners, or your inner self?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Sometimes Times There is Just too Much to Do

So I just back from Savannah and a jam packed conference!  I had hoped, and did try to finish out my streak I only had a few more days.  I have been running everyday since 4/13.  Work at the conference with 16 hour days and tons of presentations and responsibilities coupled with torrential afternoon storms meant running did not happen Monday or Tuesday.  After all of my obligations were met I got to get a run in at Forsyth Park our favorite place to run in Savannah.  We did have a 4 mile race on Saturday I will blog later about how out  of race shape I am.  Today just thought I would confess that I did not complete my streak, but I am moving on from that.  Back at regular training and kicking it up a notch for half marathon that is now 6 weeks away.  Also I will be sharing some photos of Savannah.  Enjoy it is the hostess city!
Golf cart selfie while volunteering at the GAWP fun run Monday.  I could not run but we started at 5:30 AM managing the race for other attendees
Dung at Forsyth Park.  He loves Spanish moss

Dung in front of an "English Pub with phone booth Downtown

 
View from our hotel room before we left today


 


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Random Wacky Wednesday


I had been having issues with a tight left hip since I got back from California.  I think it has to do with how uncomfortable flights are and how long it is.  I went to my chiropractor after we got back but Dr. Peter was out of town.  Dr. Melinda was not able to actually correct my hip; she said it was too tight.  Today Dr. Peter was back.  He took all of a few minutes to assess that the femoral head of my hip was turned out.  He adjusted it in like two minutes and the tightness was gone.  That is good because I have a race on Saturday.

I asked him how it happened.  He thinks I am not stretching my hamstring enough.  He gave me some new stretches.  I am going to try them out.  He said I will be race ready on Saturday.  Saturday is the Decatur Dekalb 4 miler.  I am kind of excited.  We have not had a race in months.  Usually we race at least once a week.  It is not that I am that competitive, but I like the energy of racing and it makes me push myself a little more.  So we shall see.

Today I made zucchini chips for dinner they were delicious.  I will need to do that again.  They are really simple.  I made this recipe but substituted cornflakes for bread crumbs.  Hubby loved them.  I have been trying new veggie recipes.  It has been pretty successful.  I love cooking so I love experimenting.


Here is a picture from our trip to California.  These are many of our nieces and nephews at Lake Tahoe after the wedding.  I was great to see everyone.  They are growing so fast.  

These are some random happenings from my week so far.  How is your week going?  Today I am grateful that I my hip is not tight.  Also I got an new computer and it is easier to use than my tablet.  So it makes it easier to do my blog and read other blogs!!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

I am Back..In town and on track


I have again been MIA.  This time it was for a happy reason.  I was getting things handled at work so we could go to California and celebrate our cousin Thao's wedding.  It was a family wedding in our other cousin Phuong's back yard.  Never believe your family when they say "oh it is a simple back yard wedding."  We were working from the minute we stepped off the airplane.  It was so worth it to see her happy, and it was a beautiful wedding that reflected her down to earth personality.  I will post some photo's later when they have them.  We can play my favorite game "Pick out the white girl!"  I am pretty easy to spot in our family photos.

Not only were we in California, we were in the epicenter of food in the United States.  That happens to be anywhere my husband's family is gathered.  So maintaining our regular diet was difficult to say the least.  At least we were working so hard we burned off most of the calories.  On Thursday before the wedding my new Garmin FR15 clocked 15,000 steps.  On the positive side, though they were short, we did gt a run in everyday.  I really miss the Sacramento weather, 50's in the morning and evening, no humidity 90's during the day.  I kept my streak promise alive.  I wish we had more downtime to visit with family of course to take advantage of the weather and flat terrain of Sacramento for a long run. Next time!  We had other priorities.

I did manage to hit my regular fitness schedule hard when I got back.  Added back in more fruits and veggies.  Cooked smaller healthier meals, got back to the gym for strength training and spent the rest of the week adjusting to living in the hot and humid south.  Today's five miler was the longest run in a couple of weeks.  Building back up. It is surprising how quickly you can forget how to run in the humidity!

I have to get back on the wagon just in time to leave next Saturday after our four mile race to head to Savannah and the Annual Conference for the Georgia Association of Water Professionals.  I am going to try and keep up my healthy habits, but I have a lot of responsibilities and long days.  For some reason I agreed to make 4 presentations!  What was I thinking?  Hubby is going  with me so I am also going to find some down time to enjoy a city we love.  Of course there will be running.  I have to.  I think I have a half in less than 2 months.  I need to get on the stick!!  Hope you have been getting your training in.  I read about all my friends experiences with the Peachtree.  Can't believe we missed near perfect race conditions.  Oh well next year!

I am grateful we could be there for our family and help with Thao's wedding.  It was great to see everyone.  We don't see each other enough.


Monday, June 30, 2014

Halfway There 2014





It is the end of June and officially half the year is behind us.  A good time to see how I am doing with my goals for 2014.  .

1) Stretch past my self-imposed limits and boundaries - This means both physically and mentally.  I have been trying to work on this.  I have been trying some new things and I registered for a summer half on September 6th.  I am not a big fan of running in the heat!  I have also faced the  death of my brother and a move.   I went back and joined a gym again so I could go back to strength training.  I think I am stretching myself.

2) Live my priorities - I have actually been doing pretty well with this.  I have been leaving work on time.  I have been altering my schedule and I even work through lunch so I can get to the gym on time.  Now that things are settling down I am blogging more.  Hubby and I have been spending time together and when my family needed me I took a week off to help wit my brother.  I also put my phone up earlier.  Whatever it is I am home and it can wait.

3) Run Everyday that I am able - March and early April this took a nose dive with pneumonia.  Prior to that and after that I have been doing great.  Right now I have been on a running streak since April 16th.  I plan to run through July everyday. 

4) Practice gratitude - I think I have been doing well with this.  To be candid it is easier to be grateful when huge things happen that remind you how lucky you are. Aside from that I try to recognize the small moments that make me truly fortunate.

How are your goals mid-year?

Today I am grateful to be imperfect but striving to be better.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Crossing the Gateway - I am never...

 
So I  am a good girl.  Like I never did drugs and kept my drinking to a few colleges binges and now maybe a daily glass of wine.  I never really understood the idea of gateway drugs.  You know people say Marijuana should not be legal because it is a gateway drug.  Using Marijuana will lead you to use harder drugs.  I have to admit I just took people's word for that since I never opened that gate.  It occurred to me on Thursday, as I was ordering my first GPS Running Watch a Garmin Forerunner 15, that running may be the ultimate gateway hobby. 
 
I think what classifies a gateway drug, is that despite the fact you try that first drug you say I will never use heroine.  Well flash forward past Meth, Coke, etc. and you are on the heroine train.  Again anecdotal observation, never tried any of those drugs.  However, running is an actual real life experience for me.  I think the words beginning runners say more than any other words are "I will never..."  fill in all appropriate thing that sane people would say.  I was definitely that runner.  So for today's blog I thought I would look at my own decline into full blown running addiction.   
 
It started when I was 42 and my husband said "all I want for my birthday is for you to run one 5K with me." Of course I was like "what?"   I was one of those...why would I run no one is chasing me?  There he was all expectant wanting this birthday gift.  Even that day we saw some of his friends and they were like "how cute you are running together."
 
I said "Take a picture because I am never doing this again."  I fully believed that, until I crossed the finish line and thought wonder if I could do that again?
 
I remember scoffing at my husband as crazy for his running streak.  Running everyday?  Are you kidding I can barely run 3 times a week without bribing myself with wine and pizza.  Flash forward and I am currently on day eighty of my latest streak.  I have committed to run everyday until the end of July.  This is my fourth mini-streak. 
 
I remember rolling my eyes when my husband said he needed a new pair of running shoes to rotate.  He had at least 8 pairs. I had one pair of running shoes and they seemed to be fine.  I mean I started running in my gym shoes, cross trainers. Flash forward I currently have 7 pairs in rotation. You know changing up your shoes makes you a stronger runner?
 
I always said I will never run more than a 5K.  That was so true until my husband said, "wouldn't it be fun to run the Peachtree Road Race together?"  All of sudden I was running a 10K.
 
I  thought all of this tech gear was crazy why couldn't I just wear my t-shirt and old gym shorts?  Hello chafing!  Also when I met my dear friend body glide. 
 
I always said I will never run over 10 miles, who needs to run over 10 miles?  It turns out if you are going to run a half marathon you have to run over 10 miles, and not just in the race, but on Sunday mornings when you used to sleep in, eat French toast, read the paper,  and drink coffee.
 
I always said I will never get a GPS Watch.  I have a running app on my phone.  I know how long I run.  Well I love my new Garmin.  It was so cool to download my workout today!  I know it will help me train for my upcoming half marathons, still deciding on the shoes to wear, and I hope my new Run Like a Girl Tech Shirt will arrive before Diva half. 
 
I wonder what else I am never going to do when I am running.
 
Today I am grateful for my new watch and a great run with the best running partner!
 
What will you never do?
 
 


Sunday, June 22, 2014

Runner's Random Thoughts

 
 
 
If you are old like me you may remember that Saturday Night Live Skit Deep Thoughts.  It would really be hysterical if they made one about Runners on a run.  So I am a soccer widow until the World Cup has less games a day.  This morning after yesterday's fun in the broiling sun; I decided if I was going to do a long run alone I would get out of bed and right out the door.  So that is what I did.  I had planned between 5-6 miles.  Still acclimating to summer and my half is more than 2 months away so no need to burn out. 
 
I ended up including cool down doing nearly 7 miles.  Sometimes I get carried away, don't pay attention to when I should have turned around and of course there is only one way back.  I don't know about you, but if I am not working through something on a run or chatting with my running partner the run is a series of very random, not so profound, thoughts like the one above.  So for 7 early morning, humid miles today I had a random array of thoughts:
 
Running is probably the only way a 45 year old can get away with wearing pig tails.
My running clothes are mostly purple and pink...should I get a purple flip belt? I think my pink one clashes.
Did I put on Body Glide?
I wonder if my glucose store is adequate from last night to run 6 miles without eating anything.
Would my husband answer his cell if he had to come pick me up at  the bike depot?
I wonder if they found that cat that was lost on the trail.
Did I put on Body Glide?
It is still hot.
That was nice of those cyclists to ride single file to pass.
Those cyclist riding three across forced me off the trail.  You don't own the trail you know!
What would I do if a burglar came running down Silver Comet from one of these houses carrying a TV?
You would have to be pretty fit to rob a house and run down Silver Comet with a TV.
Did I put on Body Glide?
Why am I running so fast? I am supposed to be slowing my pace.
Does anyone out here have whiter legs than me?
Can I wear flats at work tomorrow?  Yes, I don't have any meetings.
Are my hips more even now that I am going to my chiropractor?
I thought "YMCA" was on this running mix.
Hey, did I put on Body Glide?
 
So as you can see I got a lot of important things done today.  At least I got my run in and after a Slacker Saturday, followed it up with 40 minutes of upper body and core work at the gym.
 
Today I am grateful all I have to worry about is really nothing. 
 
 
 

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Running in the Heat

Today I remembered why I get up at 4 in the morning to run in the summer.  I hope you are sitting down for this...it is hot in Atlanta in June at noon.  I know right?  Who would have thought?  Right, everyone.  We had to grocery shop this morning and were kind of enjoying Saturday morning, but then we went for our run at around noon.  Something my brave, crazy husband does every day and something whiney me, does like, never.  It was like running on the sun, only with a side of humidity. 

I know heat training makes me a better runner, even if it felt like running through quicksand today.  There are a couple of things I do to make sure I can make it through the summer season.

Body Glide on the feet and thighs for sure before a run. 
Preferred running attire is a tank, definitely.  Lucky me I can wear just the tank so lose the sports bra layer.
Hydrate, but not just right before the run.  Hydration is a habit.  I just drink water all the time during the day.  I want to always be hydrated.
SUNBLOCK!  I wear 70 on my face and 50 on my body.  I am only a shade paler than an albino white rabbit so it is essential. 
My hat after it has spent an hour in the freezer.  For a long run I will wet it first then put it in the freezer
Just got a new sweat band with beads I am supposed to wet and wear.  I have not tried it yet but might.
I add an electrolyte mix to a couple of my bottles of water during the day. 
I try to wear light colors.

All of that said I think I may just run when I get up tomorrow.  I would get it done, especially since storms this afternoon gave me an excuse to bail on my strength training at the gym and I need to get there tomorrow.  I am not like my husband and at my peak at high noon.

Today I am grateful for a house that keeps me cool, safe and dry.

How do you keep cool and safe in the summer season?

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Today I met Jeff Galloway

Today Cobb County's Wellness Committee, of which I am a member, brought Jeff Galloway to teach a lunch and learn on running, health, and nutrition.  It was pretty cool if you are a running geek like me.  It was also inspiring.  Jeff will be 69 next month and he and his wife run a marathon a month!  He used his run/walk method to qualify for Boston this year!   Oh yeah and he ran the 10K in the Olympics. 

Today he was focusing on running and enjoying the experience and small health changes we can make.  I was disappointed we only got about 40 people there, considering we have 4000 employees, but I was there.  Not just because I am on the wellness committee. I wanted to meet a guy who trained with Steve Prefontaine, Frank Shorter, Amby Burfoot, and Bill Rodgers.  It was pretty cool.  I was fascinated that he admits he no longer runs competitively not even in his AG.  He said when he ran competitively he was injured about every 20 days. Since focusing on running consistently and listening to his body, he has run injury free for 30 years!  That was pretty impressive.  I am sorry I did not go up and ask to have our picture taken together for the blog.  I am not very brave about doing stuff like that.  Still it was a cool experience to meet a part of running history and get some advice.

Top Tips

You don't need to take water for a run under 6 miles.
Water is the preferred drink during a race, you won't rally have time to digest electrolytes
No two runners are alike so you have to experiment
Running safely and consistently is the key to enjoying it
What's said in the running group stays in the running group
Running, any exercise, makes your brain healthier and your cognitive function higher
Short strides are a key to injury prevention
Adding walk breaks gives your muscles time to recover so they can run stronger
Do not overstretch
Don't run through pain
The best diet tool is writing everything you eat down.  Makes it a conscious action.

He took a lot of time to answer specific questions rather than talk about himself and that was cool. 

Today I am grateful for rare opportunities.  Have you ever met a famous runner?



Sunday, June 15, 2014

Good Week for Goals

My running week ends today and it was a good week for fitness!  Joining the gym has been great.  I have been pretty consistent getting there at least 3 times a week for whole body strength training.  I can definitely feel the difference when I run from regular strength training.  I also made my weekly Chiropratic appointment. 

I have been streaking, not like that.  Get your mind out of the gutter!  I have been running at least a mile everyday since mid April.  My goal is to get through the whole month of May, June, and July.  So far so good.  One day at a time.  Also I was good about brining my lunch and cooking healthy at home.

I even got to add in a little cross training.  This is something I rarely do.  I did a little work on the elliptical and the ARC trainer at the gym.  Today I got to hike 4.5 miles with a friend who has been working so hard and has lost 100 pounds over the last year.  Pretty amazing.  Today I have a summer vegetable soup in the crock pot.  I needed something healthy and easy for hubby to grab since he is in the grips of World Cup fever.

It has been a good week.  Hoping to keep it up this week.  Hope things are going well with all of you.  Today I am grateful for good friends who inspire me. 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Attitude Adjustment

Disclaimer:  I AM NOT A DOCTOR.

This is just my experience.  This post is not what the title implied though I can say my attitude truly improves when I get regularly adjusted.  Yes, I see a chiropractor and I think it makes me a better runner. Two years ago I had an ankle injury.  No matter how much I rested it I could not get it to heal.  My assistant at work was in school to become a Chiropractor, which she is now.  Still works with me part-time.  She recommended a go to a Chiropractor.  Of course I was like "ummm it's my ankle not my back."  She just looked at me. 

"Chiro is for the whole body you are out of alignment so you keep reinjuring your ankle." She explained with all the reverence you would to your dumb a@# boss.  I wanted to run, nothing was working I went to a Chiropractor.  After an evaluation and X-rays, etc. he pronounced I had several areas of spinal subluxation and several imbalances that were causing me to run in a way that was putting more of a strain on my right side and my ankle was the result. 

He began adjusting me that first visit.  Let me preface this by saying "I am not a hugger."  I don't seek folks out I don't open myself up to touching.  In fact come at me at work to hug me and I will likely be diving under my desk.  All that said if you have ever done Chiropractic to say they "touch you" would be like saying Mike Tyson was nibbling on Evander Holyfield's ear.  I mean they are right there.  I think for the first 6 months I heard "just relax" out of my chiropractor more than "what is tight today?" 

So I am obviously a fan of what Chiropractic did for me, because as discussed above not fond of the sudden intimacy. It did help.  I found I could run faster.  I was injury free.  On a side note I had always suffered with migraines and regular headaches and those went away.  I overall felt healthier than I ever had.  Of course when something is working is when you should quit going.  I felt like I was probably adjusted and I quit.  It was fine for a while. Months even but now heading into a year I really missed the way I felt. I could tell my hips felt out of alignment and I heard a lot more snaps and crackles.  So I am back.  This time I felt like I just needed maintenance.  I joined the Joint.  You can go once a week takes 10 minutes.  You pay a monthly fee and you get your adjustment.  My new Chiro is a runner and personal trainer.  He takes a real interest in my training and asks about my running.  He also understand the special stress  runners put on their bodies.  It has worked for me and I know I will be grateful as I start back on training for my halfs. 

It might be worth checking out.  As I got adjusted today Dr. Peter said this will give you a competitive advantage.  I think he may be right.

Today I am grateful for a better aligned spine and my health!