Sunday, February 24, 2013

the f'd up F'ankle rides again

What ha' happened wuz...


I don't know what had happened.

I finished my shift at the hospital on Thursday in a somewhat cranky mood. Drove the 30 minute ride home and couldn't put full weight on my left ankle without pain when I got out of the car.

On Friday I woke up, and damn... my ankle is sprained. Like, WTF did I do yesterday at the hospital to produce THESE results?

So I'm treating it like a sprain and babying it. And since I have some kind of wicked chest cold, that's probably going to workout okay.

Tea? check.
Motrin? check.
Homework? check check.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Title & Why

I don't blog about my kids.
Recently someone asked me about it. And I didn't even have to pause... I know why I don't blog about them.

I have 3 great kids.

They do HILARIOUS stuff all the FREAKING TIME. Sometimes it's worth publishing. And occasionally, I will venture into their adventures. For example, my son is a budding Tri-athlete/MTB kid...

But for the most part, this isn't about them because they are ... part of my private self. Besides, when they are grown they can choose to blog about themselves & the HILARIOUS adventures they had as kids... but now, it's not entirely their choice, so I try to respect that.

I started this blog because... not really sure actually.

And then, a few months into it, I heard about a woman who was killed in the 9/11 attacks. Her children later found her diary and they felt they "knew her" through her diary. I figured this was a diary that I couldn't lose, or that would be locked, or that would become too large for one 'book'.

So there you go.

I changed the title of my blog from Mom to Marathoner because when I privatized my kids a bit, it demanded a new title for the blog. And now, I realize that I'm not a stay at home anything.

I'm still Neurotic. I'm a student. A Half-Ironman. And Marathoner.

Neurosis of the Student and Half-Ironmom Marathoner doesn't quite have the same ring to it though, huh?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Vegan Mondays

I decided to ease into vegetarianism. I'm eating "veg" about 4 days a week.

I'm not giving up Fish. So I guess technically I will NOT be a vegetarian even if I ease in almost all the way. So anyway, where was I?

Lentil Spinach "burger" with Curry topped with Onion
Right. I was "easing" into this... only, the thing is, I've always wondered what it would be like to be a vegan. What makes vegans go "vegan" instead of Veg... or Pesc... or whatever-atarian? What do they eat? How do they survive without animal products?

Ok. Here you go...

They eat food. True story. Both Vegan Modays I've done I have done no special shopping. And I tried new foods when I used lentils for my protein for Vegan Saturday... er... did I mention how easy I find Vegan cooking? I'm lazy...

SO onto "How they survive?"

Ratatouille with Tofu over pasta
They use delicious things like Almond Milk (or soy milk or rice milk or ...) in their coffee and on their cereal (oh, but read the ingredients on the cereal... manufacturers sneak milk in there where it doesn't belong). They don't smear butter or mayo across their bread before putting lettuce and tomato on it. I used avocados on my sammich in the place of ~well~ pretty much everything.

And I keep a food diary online so that I can see where my calories are coming from, which shows me that in order to "go vegan" all the time, I would have to do some shopping to ensure I was getting enough Calcium. Ironically, the Iron, hasn't been an issue. Cereal is generally fortified, and GBA GF never goes a day without spinach or dried apricots or broccoli... and that pesky supplement my Md makes me take also helps.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

What to wear MTB in the WINTER

There is NOTHING I hate worse than being cold.
Except the trainer. I hate the trainer worse than I hate cold. I mean seriously, why would I want to sit on the trainer in my living room when I could sit on a super comfy MTB in the woods while snow falls on me?

But every week that I go to ride my sweet whip, I suffer with the same dilemma...

Gah! What do I wear?

"There are flurries drifting down, coating the grass like powdered sugar, but it’s actually going to be a balmy 37 degrees. That’s nearly 40! If this was running I’d be in a skirt."

Grrr. What do I wear?

"BUT this isn’t running, this involves a bike. It’s cold. It’s going to be a frigid 37 degrees! Do you have ANY IDEA of how COLD 37 degrees is on a BIKE? It is cold."

I recently read a blog that was the opposite of helpful, written by some a$$ dude who obviously thinks people ask these things because it’s a FASHION STATEMENT.

Thanks yo'.

You go ahead and talk about the lycra and #junk looking nice on our cute girly figures. Over here in central VA, I’m much more worried about not over or under dressing (shudder the thought) for a 20 mile MTB ride.

Unlike running, where you become warm very quickly and typically dress for 20 degrees cooler than the forecast temperatures, cycling is different.

On a road bike you dress for 20 degrees colder than the outside temp. This is because you make your own wind child. It’s awesome. I’m kidding. It’s horrible. I’m not a fan of having cold feet. Or cheeks. Did you know your chin can get so cold you can’t talk? DeNiece and I experimented with that earlier this winter season right before she put her bike in the garage where it has sat ever since.

But MTB is warmer than road cycling. The speeds are typically cut in half. Typically one is negotiating obstacles, so there are points when a MTB may be sitting still while the rider is sweating bullets with adrenaline PUMPING and heart POUNDING.

Also, the trees shelter the MTB riders, and on the road in VA there is relentless WIND that bites... metaphorically and metaphysically. 

So this weekend I wore wool socks, running tights over bike shorts, 3 layers on top, a camel back w/ H2O, a hat, gloves and a helmet... aaaaaaannnnnd, my toes were so cold at the end of the ride that they were white, and they turned purple when I revived them in a tub of warm water...

~speaking of things that sound awesome but are not~


next time I will dress my feet like I am going road riding. And my tip would be, dress for 15 degrees cooler than the forecast. Or, if the temp is going to be 40, dress for running at 5 degrees. Or, put your bike on the trainer next to DeNiece's & TMBs.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

X-Training and Monster-X

This is NOT really a blog about cycling or MTB or cross training, but anyone who regularly runs 40-50 miles a week knows that at some point all marathon training blog posts could read exactly the same if you don’t shake it up every now and again...

“Today I ran with The Black Team. The pace was blistering. It kicked my a**. I wanted to die. But I sucked it up and ran anyway.”

“Today I ran with Potter. The pace shouldn’t have kicked my a**, but it did. I wanted to die. But I sucked it up and ran anyway.”

“Today I ran with DeNiece. The course was hilly with an occasional pesky flat spot. It kicked my a**. I wanted to die. But I sucked it up and ran anyway.”

you can barely see the snow, but
it's there, I promise. Also, I took
this while in motion. prolly not
my brightest move, I'll admit.
“Today I ran with T. It was a recovery jog. It was wonderful. More please. I’d like to find a training plan where you do recovery jogs all the time and still race a sub X:XX:XX marathon.” <~ that was today, before my ride, and it was exquisite. ~savor~

But the repetition of marathon training is one of the reasons this occasionally becomes a blog about a BOMB (Blogger on Mountain Bike) and her Kona (the MTB I purchased from Richmond Bicycle Studio that I happen to be obsessed with.) Every time I ride Kona, it’s a new experience. I mean that too. Every single time I hit the trails, I do something I have never done before.

For example, today, I joined the Gentlemen of the Roads on their training ride for Monster Cross, a 50 mile MTB/CycloCross adventure at the end of this month. I rode 23 miles, which is a personal best for me and Kona.

I also rode through snow showers. At points, the snow was a bit sleetish. We get that here in RVA. It's not fluffy snow that you catch on your tongue. It's tiny singing pellets that sizzle on the forest floor. 

For informational purposes, they sting your face when you’re going about 15 mph on a mtb. justsayin'

Merlin had a lot of supervision
It was the perfect day in so many respects. 

Everything went exactly to plan.

Well, everything except the flat tire

We lost Monica at ~like~ mile 1 or something to an unfixable flat. This also meant we dropped ourselves off the "medium paced" group of 15 or 20 cyclists. 

And then we were four. 
And then we were three.
And we mostly knew the Monster X course. ~kinda~

But I had nothing to fear or worry about, because at all times I was with the Gentlemen. None of us ever has anything to truly fear when we are riding with that group. The Gentlemen display a sense of respect at a level that many local cyclists seem to lack.

Today though, there was a point where I got a creepy “spooked” feeling. I wasn’t doing anything technically dangerous at all. We were screaming along at a nice clip down a steep hill, and I suddenly thought, there’s going to be a wooden bridge at the bottom of this hill... and somewhere on this hill is where I lost T at Bloody Muddy Buddy a few years ago.

The gravel popped under Kona like gunfire, but I held the line, leaned forward, and settled my weight back.

I didn’t slow myself much on the descent. I felt in control, and I figured better to be in control going fast, than out of control trying to slow myself. It was fine. We drummed over the bridge, three across in super hero formation, and then charged up the hill spewing gravel and mud from under our tires.

It wasn't scary. It was ~savor the ride~ worthy.

muddy and exhausted
I actually think I’m doing well on the MTB for someone in her first season. I like to try stuff. I like to ride fast. I like to push my limits so I learn how to handle the bike, so I don’t skid next time I push that hard.

It’s a constant learning curve, and for me, I enjoy the learning as much as I enjoy the sweating.

Friday, February 1, 2013

No Cows Please

Anemic Runner seeks Iron Rich Foods to Share Long Runs on the Road, Improved Hgb Counts, and lots and lots of FLAVOR on a hardwood dinner table. Must be Easy on the Budget and Hips. 
No Cows Please.

In the last week I have eaten meat at one meal and fish twice. This was a radical change in my eating habits, I assure you... the most fun day on the menu was the day I randomly went Vegan for the day on Monday. I think I might try to go Vegan Monday & Tuesday this week. 

I still eat fish without any guilt at all, and I'm still not willing to say "I'm 100% giving up 'meat'".  Nor am I willing to 100% give up Chobani or cheese. I already don't drink milk because milk and I argue violently whenever we hook up.

However, this week I learned that there is plenty of deliciousness out there for eating... aaaaand I'm not sure that mammals need to be on my menu.