Sunday, June 30, 2013

Mental Health Day

I am supposed to run 5 miles today.  Instead, it's nearly 10 a.m. and I am still in my pajamas, having taken a 2 hour nap on the couch after my kids woke me up this morning.  I am taking a mental health day.   Also a physical health day, I suppose, since I'm still getting over my cold, but really it's a brain break.  

Yesterday during my run, I didn't really feel any worse than my run on Thursday, yet I let myself take three walk breaks.  In a 3 mile run.  Granted, I was coughing some and needed water and blah, blah, but the truth is, I just let myself quit.  

I'm worn out.  The past two months have just been crazy, and July and August are going to be equally so.  So while it may not really make any difference at all, I'm taking the day to go easy on myself and remind myself that it's ok to slow down from time to time.

Tomorrow I'm having a minor medical procedure that's starting to stress me out a tiny bit, so what  better day than today to just stop, relax, and breathe?

Do you take mental health days? How do you re-group after a hectic period in your life?

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Sweating it Out

What's the expression - "Feed a cold, Starve a Fever?"  How about Sweat a Cold?  Can that be the new one?  Yesterday I was lamenting my current illness and saying woe is me, I can't run.  Sob, sob.   Today I decided to get off my duff and see what happened when I put running shoe to pavement.

In the 5 minutes before I left the house, I used 10 tissues, and I'm not even exaggerating.  During the 37 minutes that I was running, I stopped to blow my nose ONCE.  Apparently my body was too busy producing sweat to produce phlegm.  Awesome.

If I had known how much better I was going to feel after a run, I wouldn't have skipped my workout on Tuesday.  After all, I only had 2 miles on the schedule.  I can do almost anything for 25 minutes!  Why not run?  So, I know for next time.  Sometimes, pushing through is the best way to go.

(Granted, it's now 4:34 pm, my nose is stuffy, I'm coughing my head off, and I'm exhausted, but man did I feel good for a few hours earlier today!)

Onward and upward.


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

That's just Sick!

This whole blog started during a time when I was on a running hiatus due to a cold that turned into COLDZILLA and kept me sidelined for nearly 7 weeks.

So imagine my insane frustration when 6 months later, I wake up feeling exactly like I did at the start of my previous illness.  I have been taking extra vitamin C, tons of fluids, cold medicine, drinking tea, sleeping whenever possible, and just taking it easy since Saturday.  It's Wednesday, and I am not feeling any better.  Granted, I'm not feeling any worse, either, so that's good, I guess.

On the other hand, I have not run since Sunday, and I'm cranky and whiny.  Boo hoo.

Half marathon training is supposed to start a week from Monday!  This is not good timing, people!

Do you run when you're sick? If so, what kind of sick do you run through, and what kind of sick makes you stay home?  

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Advantages and Disadvantages of Early Morning Runs

A few months ago, when I was in the last stages of "training" for my half marathon, I was getting up at 4:30 or 5 on the weekends to do my long runs before my family woke up.  Then, after the race, I got out of the habit, because I was only doing shorter runs and had no need to be up so early.  I happen to like sleep, and fitting in a 3 mile run in the middle of the day is a lot easier than squeezing in 10 or 12.

Since the weather is finally warming up, and we've been busier on the weekends with the kids, I realized that I'm probably going to have to get back to early morning runs.   Today I woke up a little before 6 (alarm was set for 6:30, but my dog woke me up) and threw on my shoes and headed out the door.

The result was not terribly pretty.  Granted, I'm coming down with a cold and I didn't give myself any time at all to wake up or warm up, but still.  Not a great run today.  But I did it and now I have the rest of the day free to do with as I wish.

Which brings me to:

Advantages and Disadvantages of Early Morning Runs


  • Get the run "over with" early in the day
  • Get up and moving before your mind has a chance to come up with an excuse not to 
  • Beat the heat
  • Less traffic to deal with 
  • Having a good run early in the day can leave you feeling energized and ready to tackle the day's tasks. 

  • Waking up early is difficult for some
  • Not being fully awake when you begin your run could lead to accident or injury. 
  • Running in the dark could be dangerous
  • Having a bad run early in the day can leave you feeling tired and unenthusiastic about the day's tasks ahead. 

I'm sure there are other, more scientific advantages and disadvantages to exercising early in the morning, but really, if ya'll wanted science, you would not be here, am I right?

Do you run early in the day? 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Fitness Friday

Fitness Friday Link Up

In honor of Fitness Friday, I am..... taking a rest day.   What? You know you wanna do it, too!

I actually will probably do some light core/strength work later today, but right now it's all I can do to keep my eyeballs open.  We are having some issues with our dog keeping us up all night long - she's getting old and I think she may be getting a little dotty.  Last night/this morning, I wanted to lock her in the basement, she was driving me so crazy.  I didn't.  But I thought about it!

I bought a scale last night, and when I took it out of the box, it was broken.  I'm going to take this as a sign that I need to just get over myself.   I can continue to use the scale that we have - once a week - and as long as the numbers are getting smaller, it doesn't matter what the exact number is.  Right?  Right.

Went for a 3 mile run last night and now I'm considering finding another 5K to sign up for.  Half Marathon training starts in a little over 2 weeks (ahhh!!!), but I'm hoping my coach wouldn't mind if I threw in a 5K in September.  I really would like a new 5K PR this year.  It's actually on my "2013 Goals" list.  Considering my run last night was my 5K PR exactly, I'm thinking that if I actually tried, I could beat that fairly handily, even with the extra .1 tacked on.  I found a local, very small, race that I think is on fairly flat ground.  It's run by a church, so I'm hoping no one would boo me even if I were the last across the finish line (which, in a race of 50 people or so, is a strong possibility).

So we'll see.  I'm feeling a lot better about my running lately, and putting aside all the negative thoughts that I had earlier this year while I was sick and not running.  I may not be where I could be, in terms of my running, but things happen.  Training gets stalled, injuries occur, it's just life.  I'm 34.  I'm hoping to be running when I'm 64.  I literally just have to take it one step at a time.

So.  What are you doing on this lovely Friday?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Tipping The Scales

Yesterday marked one week since I'd started logging calories and doing a little extra exercising.  I hopped on the scale, and it said I'd lost 2 lbs.  I immediately thought "Wow, no way" and tried it again.  And again.  And again.  After four times on the scale and four DIFFERENT numbers being shown, I realized that while I may have lost weight, I have no idea how much, or how much I really weighed in the first place!  My scale is apparently fairly indecisive.

I have either lost .5lbs, 1lbs, 1.5lbs, or 2lbs.   Hmm.  Obviously we all know which I'd like to believe.  Unfortunately, I just can't quite convince myself to believe anything that liar says to me anymore.  *sniffle*

So, later today I'll be off to find a new scale.  Admittedly, ours is pretty old, but I wish I'd thought of this before I started this current weight loss quest.  But! It does appear that I've lost SOME weight, because even having my period and eating ice cream the other night, my "skinny" pants still fit just fine, whereas normally this time of the month I'd be in my "fat" jeans.  (When I lost weight before, I kept a pair of my older sized jeans as a back up for those days when I'm feeling bloated and crappy. Anyone else do that?)

Anyway.  So that's my mission for today.  Well, after we take the kids to the aquarium, and after we take the kids to the pool.  Silly kids, getting in the way of my mission.

In other news......

I am a pasty white girl.  Has been true since the day I was born, with bright orange hair.  I freckle, then burn, in the sun.  I've gotten really good at slathering myself with sunscreen (and, I'll admit, just hiding indoors), but since I've started running, I'm getting more sun than I ever have before, and I've developed a problem.

I have a sunburn down the part in my hair.  Ow.  I wear a visor when I run, which keeps the sun off my face, but I never really thought about my hair/scalp.  I don't want to wear a hat because I get really overheated when I run, anyway, but obviously I don't want to keep getting an ouchy scalp.   Has this happened to anyone else? I feel like such a dork.


Monday, June 17, 2013


Last night's run was hard.  From almost the very first step, it was hard.  I felt like I was running in slow motion (which, hey, I kind of was).  I was feeling kind of down about myself, but then once I was done, I realized that even though it was hard, I didn't walk or cut the run short, I just kept on going.  I realized I was proud of that effort, that determination.  

Then I woke up this morning and logged onto Facebook and this is the first thing I saw: 

Well said, Mr. Burfoot.  

What rewards does running offer you?

Sunday, June 16, 2013

How To Have A Perfect Saturday

Usually on Saturdays, I get to sleep in.  Didn't happen this weekend, but that's ok.  I woke up in a good mood, and the kids and I just kind of chilled all morning.  It was nice and relaxing - my husband was off at a meeting, so we just hung out in our PJ's and watched a movie.

My husband came home while the kids were "napping," so when they got up he took them outside and I got dressed to go for a run.  I was kinda tired and not really expecting much from the run.  It was only a 2 miler, so I figured I'd just pound it out and get back home.

Somehow, without trying, I managed one of the fastest runs I've ever had.  It was awesome.

Used to be, the split times would start with 13s.  11s make me much happier! =)  Maybe all the core/strength work I've been doing is helping.  Or maybe it was just a fluke and will never be repeated. LOL  We'll see.  

After my run we decided that we'd head to the park for a picnic, so I got a quick shower and rounded up the kids.  They donned their sunglasses and dubbed themselves the "Rock N Roll Rangers!"  It was quite adorable.  

Liam, 5 and Samantha, 4

We picked up some food on the way and headed to the park.  It was a beautiful day and we had a great time.  It was the first time in a long time that we've all done something fun and relaxing together outside.  We've all been glued to technology way too much lately, and it was a nice change.  I'm hoping there's lots more to come this summer! 

How did you spend your Saturday? 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Fitness Friday Fun!

It's Friday! It's Friday!

Granted, Fridays have different meaning to me now that I'm a stay-at-home-mom, but still.  Fridays are inherently magical, aren't they?  Ok, no, they're not.  But I'm trying here, people!

Today is day 3 of my "Stop being such a lazy fatass!" campaign.  I just finished 20 minutes of core/strength work with my lovely daughter.  Being 4, she doesn't quite have all the moves down, but man, does she have pep!  Though, I will admit, she flat out told me she would NOT be doing planks today.  I laughed so hard I nearly peed myself.  She is so cute. Turns out, I didn't do any planks, either.  (The plank police on Twitter are going to get me!  Eek!)

But back to my campaign.  What is my plan to "stop being such a lazy fatass," you wonder.  Well, I'll tell you!

  1. Run and/or exercise 6-7 days a week. 
  2. Write down everything that I eat and drink. 
  3. Play with my kids more. 
  4. Stop eating so many bagels (this is so hard!). 

Basically it's nothing drastic, since I already run 4 days a week, I'm just adding extra non-running workouts in on my "off" days.  Paying attention to what I eat helped me lose weight before, so I'm back at it - not dieting, per se, but paying more attention to how much/how often I eat.  It helps.   

Playing with my kids more seems like a no brainer, but you'd be amazed at how often the Internet becomes a huge time suck.  (Or maybe you wouldn't, if you're here reading this!)   

The bagels.  That's the hardest part.  The damn Panera bagels that are so yummy they make me want to cry. Asiago cheese bagel, sliced, toasted, and spread with Laughing Cow cheese.  All totalled?  430 calories.  It's not worth it.  Yet it's so worth it.  OMG.  I need an intervention.   Cheese bagel + cheese.  Obviously I have a problem.   


Ok.  Moving on. 

Um....... where was I?  

Bagels. Dammit. 

Oh! Right!  Guess who hasn't had a soda in 2 days?  It's unreal, people.  I switched to the mini cans of Coke for a week, then when they were gone, that was it.  I just didn't get any more.  I know that was my plan a few weeks ago, but please, that did not happen.  But now, it has!  Awesomesauce.  LOL   (Um, my spell check recognizes "awesomesauce."  When did THAT happen??)  

So what are you doing this lovely Friday?  If it involves bagels, don't tell me.  Please. I beg of you.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Run, baby, run!

I am not artistic.  I can't sing, my dance moves leave much to be desired, and I have the memory of a goldfish.  There is nothing I can point to and say "I am really good at that." Tonight, though, sailing through an easy two mile jaunt around my neighborhood, I felt like Wonder Woman.  I felt strong.  Smooth.  Like maybe, just maybe, I'm not so bad at this running thing after all.

Granted, there's a difference between "not so bad" and "good," but really the only reason I'm hesitant and this exact second to say I could be "good" at running is because I'm still god-awful slow.  Not as god-awful slow as I was in the very very beginning, but still solidly back of the pack.  Yet I don't feel like I lumber, or lurch, or struggle.  At least, not lately.  Since telling my coach I wanted to "start over" with regards to my running, I feel like I'm actually doing a good job.  Performing well. 

It's weird. It's also fan-freaking-tastic.  Now if I could just get the rest of my life to run (ha ha) so smoothly!

Monday, June 10, 2013

June Stride Box!

Over the weekend, everyone was Tweeting that they'd gotten their new Stride Boxes.  When I got back from NYC late Saturday, there was no brown box waiting for me.  Grrr.  Then, today, I discovered that my husband hadn't actually gone to the mailbox on Saturday!  Apparently he does not understand the importance of MAIL.

Anywho, I opened up the box today and found all kinds of goodies.  If you have not yet checked out Stride Box, I sincerely urge you to do so.  $15 a month, and you get to try out all sorts of things that you might not ordinarily try.

June Box with detailed "Stride Guide" that explains the contents

Power Ice - "Frozen, Refreshing Ice Bar with Electrolytes" 

Lock Laces - "No Tie Athletic Shoelace System" 

Skratch Exercise Hydration Mix, Pocket Fuel Almond Butter with Kick, and
Electro Delytes Energy and Electrolyte Citrus Bars

Ridiculously blurry picture of Blue Steel Anti-Chafe Cream

Due North - Foot Rubz Massage Ball
I am very excited to try all of the edible/drinkable stuff, since I am continually searching for new and better ways to hydrate and fuel during longer runs and races.  The massage ball will please my husband, since that means he can have his back (I may have "borrowed" it a few months ago).  Lock Laces are something that other people I know swear by, but I have never tried.  Now's my chance!  That's why I love Stride Box so much.  If I went out and tried everything that everyone suggested, I'd go broke.  This month, I get to try out roughly $27 worth of product for only $15 - AND I don't have to go anywhere or do anything.  It just comes straight to my door!  How can you beat that?  

Plus, if you end up liking any of the things that you try in the Stride Box, almost all of the products come with a coupon code for 10-20% off through the Stride Box website! Score!  

Have you gotten any fun mail lately?

Sunday, June 9, 2013

In A New York Minute

27 hours in New York City is not nearly enough!  What a whirlwind.  We went to see Pippin (awesome, by the way), spotted Andrew Rannells (adorable!), ran in Central Park, and just wandered all over the city.  It was a little insane.  I am glad to be home!  

I didn't take many pictures because we were constantly on the move, but here are a few of the dozen or so that I did take.  

The area formerly known as "Ground Zero."  

Parsons!  Love Project Runway, so of course it was fun to see this building. 

Central Park Alice in Wonderland statue (and me, with my eyes closed, I think LOL) 

Now I must take a nap.  Buh-bye.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Feels like Friday already!

Finally had a good run - seems like the past two weeks have been filled with either crappy running or no running at all.  But last night was a good run.  Granted, it was only 2 miles and they were incredibly slow, but I felt in control of my breathing, my footfalls, everything.  I felt strong.  And strength while running is something that makes me feel like maybe I'm not such a farce after all.

Another good thing about last night's run was that I got to road (trail) test my new shorts.  I was a little hesitant to try them because I worried that they'd bunch up, but they totally didn't.  So thrilled, because I really wanted a pair of shorts for this summer, when it's hotter than hades and I didn't feel like wearing the added layer of a skirt w/compression shorts.   So I will be buying a couple more pairs of these lovely shorts (Brooks 5" Woven Shorts, for anyone who is curious) once I figure out where the heck the $$ is coming from.

Pitfall of being a stay at home mom on a limited budget who has been doing a lot of shopping and travelling lately?  You end up broke.  And now is not a good time to be broke, because I'm headed to New York tomorrow!

Michelle and I are taking a bus up tomorrow morning to the "Big Apple" to see an old friend, catch a Broadway show, do some walking in Central Park, and basically just do whatever the heck we want for a solid 36 hours. Well, within legal and monetary and moral limits.  We're good girls, dammit!

Anywho, that's what I'm up to this weekend.  Anyone else doing anything fun this weekend?

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Summer Schedule

I did not realize how much of a "creature of habit" I'd become until the past two weeks.  My daughter finished up her year of preschool, meaning that I no longer have two free mornings a week.  Which means that my M/W/F/Sa schedule of running got a little wonky, because me being able to run after my husband gets home from work is kind of iffy.  (Sometimes we have plans, sometimes he's late, etc, etc)

I need to rework things, because I am all out of sorts and starting to get grumpy that I haven't been able to go running when I want to.   Yes, yes, "1st world problems" and all of that.  Whatever.  My blog, my right to bitch and moan about whatever I want to.    (Which I know is sooooo entertaining for ya'll to read!)

I think I may switch my schedule to Tu/Thu/Sa/Sun and just get up at the ass-crack of dawn to go running before hubby goes to work.  It's not like I have to worry about it being too cold out at 4:30 in the morning anymore!  Of course, typing "4:30 in the morning" makes me want to cry, but if I can get up that early on race day with no issue, I can convince myself to get up that early for a regular run, too, right?


I guess we'll see.  I didn't drag myself out of bed till almost 7:20 this morning, and my punishment for that will be running after dinner tonight.  Which I hate to do.  So maybe I really will be able to condition myself to wake up early.  The only other real alternative is the *shudder*  GYM.  

Someone please explain to me why I hate the gym so much?  When I first started running, I went 3 times a week.  Every week!  Treadmill, trainer sessions, etc, etc.  My kids went to the Kids Club, it was a whole thing.  Now I can't even fathom dragging my butt to the gym.   Why is that?

The more I think about it, the more I think that I really ought to go to the gym today.  Heck, it's paid for, right?

Anyone else have an aversion to the gym?

Monday, June 3, 2013

Soda Swap

I am a soda addict.  I had grand plans awhile back to cut out all soda, in an effort to be healthier (read: skinnier).   It did not work.

Then, Abby commented that she'd heard that juice and sparkling water mixed together might work for me.  Sweet + bubbles.  Just like soda!  While I admit that I never got around to trying it, one night while I was at the kids swim classes, I noticed something new in the vending machine.
Sparkling ICE.  "Naturally Flavored Sparkling Mountain Spring Water" with "ZERO CALORIES."   Hrm.  Normally I shy away from things with zero calories because they either have zero taste, or waaay too many chemicals and just taste poopy.  <-- Scientific analysis, people.  That's what you get here.  

Anyway.  It was $1.75 or something stupid in the vending machine, but I figured I'd give it a whirl.  The flavor I chose was "Crisp Apple."   I drank the whole thing not being able to decide if it tasted good or not.  It was... different.  But it had no calories and it was bubbly, and I thought, "Eh. At least it's not a soda." 

Then I went home and had a soda.  

Fast forward to a week later and I'm back to feeling like I drink too much soda, and I pick up the Orange Mango (pictured above).  I was staying in a hotel at the time and didn't get around to drinking it for awhile and it ended up warm and.... blah.  Did not like it.  

Fast forward another week (we're almost caught up, I swear) and I give it one last go.  Black Raspberry.  

Oh. My. God.  Deliciousness in a bottle.  Yum yum in my tum tum.  Seriously.  So freaking good.  And zero calories!  Have I mentioned that part?  

So.  I still have not totally given up soda, but I am trying to swap them out more for the new awesomeness I have discovered.  (Full disclosure, I also have Kiwi Strawberry, Lemonade, and Lemonade with Tea in the fridge but have not tried them yet.  They could be totally disgusting, I have no idea. If they're half as yum as the Black Raspberry, though, I'll be in heaven.)

Anyway.  Just thought I'd share my "discovery" for anyone who is looking for an alternative to soda.  Or water.  Or coffee.  Or whatever.   I was in no way compensated for this post, however if by some miracle the lovely makers of Sparkling ICE were to read this and feel like sending me a free case or whatever, I'd totally be down with that.  Yup yup.  Good stuff.  

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Slow and Steady Wins The.... Wait a minute!!

Today I ran the Matzohball Run, a local 5K.   I ran this same race last  year, and it was a really bad day for me, emotionally.   I finished in 39:15, which at the time was a PR, so I should have been happy, but I was not.  I was all weird and conflicted and unhappy and blah.

Fast forward 364 days to today - I finished in 40:13 (which is 4+ minutes SLOWER than my current PR), and I was totally happy and fine and whatever.

Makes NO sense to me, whatsoever, but I guess I shouldn't complain about being happy. LOL

It was soooooo hot today, and I ended up walking so many times, it was ridiculous.  I almost always negative split during races, because I don't warm up well and I kind of warm up as the race goes on.  Today, I warmed up with a little slow running and some strides (I'm such a pro now LOL), and then BOOM - started the race (downhill) going so fast my feet should have fallen off.  I spent half a mile going "Too fast! Too fast!" and the other 2.6 miles slowing down to turtle speed.  And walking.  And talking to random fishermen who were also displeased with the weather.   It was good times. =)

Last year, I finished just ahead of a 68 year old woman.  Today, I finished just behind that same woman (now 69!).   She told me she's done over 1500 races in the past 47 years.  I want to be her when I grow up.  Except she's probably slowed down as she's aged, and I'm already her speed.  LOL

The shirt looks blue here, but it's Ravens Purple! 

Happy Sunday! =)