Friday, December 31, 2010

Don't Tempt me with Impossible

Today I am going to attempt the impossible.

I will write a clever blog post about Next Years Goals.  Oh, I know, it sounds like an impossible task, but, it would be truly out of character if I didn't try.

I suppose it would be logical to see how I did last year.

Keep the 4.0 and apply to/get accepted into nursing school.  check. and check.

stop cussing.  ~about. that.~
start back writing again... and...
donate my hair.... oh crap!  Total fail on personal goals.  My hair was rejected - it's too weak.  and... SEE ABOVE NOTE ABOUT 4.0 on FAIL regarding writing book again.

Eat Clean - you know what?  I'm not a fail.  I'm not a pass.  We still eat OREOs... sometimes, we also eat vegetarian and organic when we can - which is a lot more than we used to... I've eaten 1 salad per day for most of the past month.  And, seriously, imagine what I would look like if I hadn't done that.

Run Goals...  from last year included run with good form and increase my weekly milage.  I'm going with a Fail/Pass on that.  My form is good if Greg Roth is staring at me when I'm running up and down hills in Rain Tree... if he's not... well, then photography shows its a crap shoot.  As in, my form is crap if there's a camera to shoot it.  And increase weekly milage - snicker snicker... if you'd told me in January that I would run not one but THREE 50 mile weeks, or ever log 28 miles in 3 days, I would tell you to stop. smoking. crack.  But I did both of those things, and so much more.  And finally, run 1000 miles.  I exceeded that by, well, a lot.

Lose 5 pounds.  Well, just like Bridget Jones - I lost 5 pounds, and gained 5 pounds.  Making my weight today the same as it was on this day last year.  wow.

SO - forward and onward...

IN 2011 -

Don't get hurt. (form)
Keep Swimming. (Cross)
Run Further. (keep milage base)
Survive Nursing School. (keep milage base)
Run More Miles (no number, I'm not going to limit myself)
Achieve at least one GBA PR. (add intensity/core work to routine)
Lose the 5 pounds again, preferably before November. (count calories, keep them pure)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Invincible Fail

you know that feeling of invincibility that the post marathoning runner gets, just after they finish a GBA marathon?  It seems like 40 miles a week is "so do-able" and "why not just go out and do a 16 miler as a run because it's a Tuesday and I can..."?

Well I do.

And that is so not where I'm at right now.

I lost my run.

Or it lost me.

We lost each other.

MIA? or AWOL?  It's hard to say.

Somewhere in all the kleenex and Dr's appointments reminder cards and balled up wrapping paper and piles of trash produced by Christmas... my run was accidentally thrown away.  I mean, I'm not sure that's what happened.  I think that it's a possibility though.  I had my run a few days before Christmas, and then BAM! it was gone.

Just like that?

Just. Like. That.

Seriously though, I've caught a cold that has moved into an upper respiratory infection... viral, they say... though do they really know?  no.  they don't.  but that's what they say.  So, I'm completely incapable of drawing a pain free running breath.

I can breathe fine, if I'm laying on the couch.  Under a blanket.  After a nap.  But any exertion on my part results in severe tiredness and paleness, and some coughing that is... awesome.

And yea, it's way past my bedtime, but I'm awake.  You know why?

Well, it's probably the lack of run.

Or the 4 hours of naps I took today... after sleeping till 10ish.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Season of Inadequate Mothering

I'm feeling a little behind this year.

Well, to be honest, I'm pretty much more behind than I've ever been since 1999.

Tis the season though, so I've got to get it all done if possible.  Though, I think it's safe to say at this point that SOME things are NOT going to get finished.  We're at the part of the race where you're 2 miles from the finish, the PR is totally busted and you're not going to achieve it - but you've still got to finish the darned race before the clock ticks past the "allowed time on course".

It's Christmas Eve and I've managed not get all the gifts wrapped, nor have I even PURCHASED everything for the stockings!  I've managed not to write my annual Christmas Poem (which is generally EPIC... ahem), or write a newsletter or produce the holiday COMIC.  Yes, normally I write a full holiday comic... here is a past comic so you can see how high I set the bar...

there's a water mark because I haven't re-purchased the program this year.  
Depressing - I always leave it as a TBC, and I didn't manage to continue it!  Uhg.  But at this point, I should tell you that the comic usually takes about 3 hours that involve curse words and a furrowed brow.  So.  It's not going to happen.

We even went to Disney this year!  Really I should have written the comic, sent the card and a newsletter bragging about all the great things we did there.  The newsletter could have also bragged about the fact that of the 400 people who applied to the nursing program I applied to, I was one of the 37 chosen.  Nice to feel elite in SOMETHING.  I also WON my age group in a 5K, and seriously, THAT right there is newsletter worthy.  But as I said, no comic & no newsletter.

I DID manage to send out 12 (yes, only TWELVE) Christmas cards yesterday so that people like my Grandmother will be able to show off their great-grand kids pictures....

SO, as I was saying, LOTS of things I haven't done.

BUT here are some other things I haven't done.

I haven't had to call the police once this holiday season.  A first in a while.  Seriously, wish I was kidding.

AND I haven't had to call a plumber, though, there's still time for that to "correct" itself.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Gifts Galore

We're going LOW KEY this year.  
We're NOT going over board, here.  
From this track I will NOT sway.
We're POOR, 
we're SAVING, whatever you want to call it, we're 

We're ... 
H, what did you just say?
You got the kids WHAT???

Ooooooooooh Kay.

Meet O'Malley, Formerly the STRAY cat known as Will Feral, who has officially been transferred over to his new home, Chez Moi.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


I'm not uninspired these days.  I'm OVERinspired, and UNFOCUSED.

I have 688 great ideas.  No means to get them onto a paper/computer screen/etc.

This isn't a great combination for a blogger/writer/mother/student.

Oh, and did I mention my mom will be here in less than a week & my house looks like it hasn't been cleaned since the Fall Semester started?

Monday, December 13, 2010

built for Speed?

I am a brick. HOUSE.  I'm built to go the distance.  I have ridiculously HUGE quad muscles on a ridiculously short frame.  I look like a tank.  It's OK.  I'm OK with this...  I don't go out to 5K's to win anything.  I'm not built for speed.  I'm an endurance runner.

I go out to raise money, hang out with my friends, do a "speed workout", test my latest heart rate/fitness level.  This is why I do 5K's.  I don't train for them, I certainly just figure that I'm always 5K ready.  I've run some stupid 5K's too.  For example, raise your hand if you've run a 5K during a Tropical Storm?


SO, as a marathoner, who just raced a 10 miler 8 days ago, who didn't taper, train or prepare for this race beyond the purchase of a few additional toys for the Tots and a cute pair of socks, I arrived to run a 5K Sunday.  In the cold.  Rain.

Of course, this is the social event of my Sunday - so let's get to the important stuff... I wore this:

and Kc, Honey, we need to get you some more color.

We met 3L and Kara (who's really going to need to get a blog name ASAP) and prepared to run our 5K by standing around gabbing in the rain.  

good stuff.  The pre-race photo looks a bit, "bundled"...
Kc, g., Kara & 3L

We made our deals and our plans, and lined up at the start.  I know these ladies are fast.  I decided I was just going to CHASE them.  

We blew out of the start going WAY WICKED too FAST.  I knew I couldn't hold a 6:40 pace, and pulled back.  At about mile .4 I saw 3L for pretty much the last time.  I spent the rest of the race on Kc's and Kara's heels.  I was just trying to hang at a sub 8 for the whole race.  WTHeck.  I'm not built for speed.  This body does NOT enjoy sprinting.

I sloshed and pushed and slushed through the rain, and my personal favorite, WIND to a nice and happy 20 second PR!  Twenty Seconds in RAIN on a 5K!  Yea, I was pleased.  Then we went to see if 3L had won her age group.

We harassed Q for a bit, watched Kara's car get jumped when it wouldn't start, all hanging out in the hopes that they would announce the winner for 3L's group.  Q gave us the good news that 3L had indeed won, but the official results were not up.  I wanted to stay so I could snap a photo of her getting her ribbon.  

Alas, my babysitter called, it was getting "long" and Kc & I had to leave.  At least we left KNOWING that 3L had indeed WON!  

But the best thing came about 15 minutes later.  A text from 3L to ME...

"You won your age group."

No.  Way.


Kara won her age group.  3L won her age group.  Kc placed 3rd in her age group.  Seriously, we were just a PACK of Galactic BA**s today.  There's no other way to put it!  

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Language Immersion Programs

I was thinking about my spoiled children, and realized how spoiled I am.

I live in one of the BEST running (small) cities in the country.  I'm being serious for a change.  I was just reading the local Road Runners newsletter for last month (homework/cleaning/holiday avoidance) over breakfast and wow.  It is very well written for a small publication.  It's about the same size as the daily newspaper in Bermuda, but.... did I mention how the RRRC publication is well written?  So, I'm a month behind.  I have a 4.0...  if I wasn't at least a month behind on my magazine subscriptions we'd be worried.

Anyhoo....  In it was a tribute to what makes Richmond such a great running town.  The article listed 5 things.

If I had to choose only ONE thing that makes Richmond a great running town, it might have to be Sportbackers.  Truly.  Sportsbackers works hard to make running THE topic of conversation for 8 months of the year.  I arrived in Richmond, having lived in VA for most of my life, only to discover that I didn't speak the language of Richmond.

I was not Running Second Language.

If you're not running, or married to a runner, or know a runner... then you're not going to be able to follow along with conversations at parties in Richmond.  I'm serious, because a few years ago:

I was not a runner.  

not married to a runner.

didn't really know any runners.

and all I could do at parties was rely on someone else to please-god-change-the-subject-to-something-I-know-and-understand.

It makes me wonder if I would have ever taken up running if we'd moved to DC, Atlanta, or Phoenix instead of Richmond.  That was the short list when my husband was taking interviews.  Without the constant immersion of hearing about the Monument Ave 10K race here in March, followed by constantly hearing about people training for the 8K/Marathon in November, followed again by that stupid 10K and "enough already, why are you people all talking about running that 10K again, didn't you already RUN it ALREADY???  I could never run that far.  Ever.  In my life."  

I just think about that now and laugh to myself.  I'm so lucky that THAT WASN'T TRUE!

A little side note here, but I wonder what else I've ever said about my own limitations that wasn't true...

I'm lucky to have found myself in such a community of runners.  Runners are GREAT people.  Selflessly selfish.  It's an oxymoron of stupid proportion.  But -

A runner will selflessly give you their last kleenex.

A runner will selfishly take 3 hours for themselves to go run.

What brought me to running?  T.  TMB brought me to running.

What else brought me to running?  A lucky break on landing in a city where the second language spoken is Running.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Virtual 5K link -

Hey - my bloggy friend Alex (the one who got voted off Taper Island to go do an Ironman...) is hosting a Virtual 5K.  Go check it out and give her some love!

part 2

I know I just posted, 3 minutes ago...  but...


and what did we learn?

I'm big on two things.

Learning from our mistakes.

Not deviating from the routine.

Lately I've had SO much going on that I'm always trying to fit ONE more thing in, which leads to deviating from the routine, general lateness -which I loathe, and plenty of mistakes to learn from.

What was today's lesson?


It could result in arriving at the planned group run, with no running shoes.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

bloggy drought?



Not exactly a drought.

It's finals week.

I have a paper due.

and 3 finals.

oh, and yea, there's this little holiday that you may have heard of in a few weeks, something about the birth of the savior or something like that...

to the kids its about a guy with a weight problem who doesn't use a razor.

or a car.

and he has unlimited money.

and elves to make anything he can't afford.

which sadly I don't have.  or unlimited money either.

~sigh~  I feel like little Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family Values.

I'm not cheery.  (well that's for damn sure)  But I want to be.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

SurfnSanta 10 Miler Race Recap

At the "last minute" I registered for the SnS 10miler.  My friend Joan was running it as her official "come back to running" race.  I wanted to run it when I found out about it in October or so.... but worried how it would fit in my schedule, worried I would get injured at the marathon, worried how I would perform with less than a month of recovery after the marathon, etc and so forth.  I was NOT worried about which socks I would wear.

Yesterday I decided that I would run THIS one for my brother.  Next year maybe we can run it together. And by together, I mean I'll be 6 - 7 minutes behind him....

So the recap...

This morning I woke up at 3:33, got up, dressed and hit the road by 4:30am. As I drove, the station was playing one of my brother's favorite bands from when we were teenagers (Beck).  And then another favorite (Primus), followed by another (The Meat Puppets), and another... and I thought, THIS is going to be a good day.

So I made a race plan based on my idea of best case scenario.  Race the first two miles at 8:45's, speed up to an 8:35 or so and finish strong.  It was a 2 hour drive.  I had time to do math.  I wanted the clock to read 1:26:something when I finished.  I knew I could do that if I worked hard.  I set my watch to show Pace and Average Pace.  And nothing else.

Kudo's to the race organizers for CUTE stuff in the Packets.  We got bib#'s w/ chips attached, a wind jacket, Santa Hats, and... 2 jingle bells to tie on our SHOES!!!  Seriously, HOW CUTE IS THAT?  I debated the bells and finally decided, why not?
Aren't these socks SUPER?

Joan and I met up and hung out for a bit.  We failed to connect to Pants Guy, despite us looking for him and he for us, and finally we just headed to my car to drop off my phone, and then to corral #2.  Technically she was corral #3, but I felt that waiting in the cold (36degrees) for an extra 2 minutes wasn't a super plan.
Joan & I, right before we went outside to race!

When the pack of runners started running ALL our jingle bells were so CUTE!  Ring Ring Ring through the (vacant) Virginia Beach Ocean Front.

For the first 2 miles Joan & I ran together.  We joked and laughed, and I was SO happy to be running with her.  At the mile 2 marker there was an S curve and I took a straight line through the center, i.e. "ran the tangent".  I passed about 10 people in that moment and heard Joan say, "Have a good race!"

At this point I was on the boardwalk and it was tough going.  Very windy.  So, I settled in behind a tall guy running a pace I felt good with...  and passed him and found another guy... and got winded when he sped up more so I fell in behind a third guy, and before I knew it it was time to make the turn onto Atlantic.  Down Atlantic Ave I felt good, but I vowed not to get carried away.  I still had 5 miles left to run, so I held steady at my 8:30something pace.  It was easier than the boardwalk because the wind was blocked by the hotels.

Then we had a little out and back and I saw Joan and cheered for her!  She looked good.  The course was 2 loops.  A large one and a small one.  My second trip down the boardwalk loop was a little tougher.  I had lost my wind blocking men and was running about 12 feet behind an 88 pound girl in white socks.  She made for a poor wind block. I kept her in my sights through the turn, and then I realized four things.

I was at mile 9.
I had no idea how much time had elapsed on the course because my watch wasn't set up to show me that information.
Jingle bells on two hundred shoes are only cute for the first 9 miles of a run.
I felt really good & needed to re-adjust my goals.

I tried to run an 8 minute mile all the way to the finish.  It was close, I ran an 8:06.  I passed the white sock girl and said, "C'mon!  You've got this!"  She tailed me all the way in, I beat her by maybe thirty seconds.  I ran across the finish line, which was INSIDE the Virginia Beach Convention Center, stopped my watch, and went through the "line" of medals, food, drink, etc. and finally, after I got to the agreed meeting place for me & Joan... I looked at my watch.... what?  What?  Um... What does it mean?

Joan finished and I was SO proud of her finish!  She looked strong and happy!  I told her my time, and I was still foggy (I get that way sometimes after I finish a race, it's just me).  She CHEERED for me with a HUGE smile and said, "It's a G.B.A** TIME!"

It took a few minutes for me to realize my accomplishment.  I beat my goal by almost a MINUTE.  I was a little hesitant to celebrate though.  Does it make me arrogant to celebrate my own greatness???  Joan pointed out that it is "OK to be PROUD of ourselves.  It is OK to celebrate your OWN greatness.  Be PROUD".

Today I got a PR, and I am a PR.

Proud Runner. 1:25:11,  SnS 10 Miler.

Friday, December 3, 2010

relative running

My brother is a family guy, married to a SAHM, 2 kids, 2 dogs and 1 cat... who serves in the US Military on the other side of the world.  I talked to him today on SKYPE and it made me SO THANKFUL for technology.  I could see him, hear his laugh, look at his crooked grin that looks like the male version of my crooked grin...  He runs his hands through his cropped hair the way I tuck mine behind my ears and untuck it from behind my ears...  it was great.

Growing up my brother was my best friend.  From the time we were about 13 & 16 until he left home at 19 we were inseparable.  We talked every day, and when he was at boot camp I sent him letters.  When he was deployed I was late for school (and got detention) because I drove him to the base and waited until the boat pulled away.  Those of you who 'know' me know that I'm never late.  So it was a big deal.   But he was in subs, and you never knew if they might change their mind and not "sail" that day... so I waited.

Today we talked for about 20 minutes.  It was the first time we'd talked in a long time.  The last time our connection was screwy and we couldn't connect.  We "texted" on 4th of July.  Seriously.  We texted.  And while that sounds lame, I was thankful for the interaction because it meant he was OK that day.

Today it was late for him, he'd been up for 20 hours or so, so he was tired, and he kept yawning.  It was a video chat, so I kept yawning back.  We were yawning together.

He's taken up running.  He's bored over there, so despite never running more than a 5K before, he's training.  And now we're racing each other.  He just raced a 15K that measured 9.6 miles.  Well, it's a military base, I guess they're not "measuring accurately" for the races.  This weekend I'm running a 10miler.  It's going to have to be "close enough".

And it's not really fair, he kicks my butt EVERY RACE.  I mean, seriously, he trains at a 8:30 pace!  He showed me his sprint technique from his desk.  And we laughed at how ridiculous he looked exaggerating so much for my sake over here.

But it's OK, because it's something we do that gives us something to talk about with each other.

It's harder than it sounds, by the way, talking across an ocean and desert.  Because there's an ocean AND a desert... and a sea and a few countries between us, I can't always say what I want to say, and neither can he.

Tomorrow's race is for the one's who can't race where they want to...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

BornFit Sisterhood

A few weeks ago I was asked to be part of the BornFit Motherhood of the Traveling Shirt.

The way it works it that you're supposed to send the shirt to a mother who inspires you, and I was honored (actually choked up a little) to be "invited to the sisterhood" by a dear friend of mine.

Thank you, TMB.  You inspire me too.

I enjoyed the shirt for two weeks, here's a little write up about it.

And now my time with the shirt is over, and I've sent the it on to a Mother and runner who inspires me.