Friday, February 26, 2010

Looking for Endurance.....

Last month I read the book “50 Marathons in 50 Days” by Dean Karnazes. I honed in on one of the conversations that he had with a fellow runner on the fact that Viagra improves running endurance in people who live at altitude. I quickly got on the Viagra website to check things out. My husband was sitting across from me and I asked him if he thought a doctor would give me a prescription for Viagra if I told him I wanted to improve my endurance.

He looked at me funny for a minute and before he finally asked “What kind of endurance do you want to improve?”
“My running endurance at altitude.” I replied and told him what I had read in the book. He just shook his head, laughed at me, and started to razz me as I continued to pour over Viagra websites. He’s used to all of my goofy ideas and things, so he shouldn’t have been too surprised by my quest for knowledge.

Well, these websites must have had a spy in them because for the past month, my spam inbox has been inundated with e-mails letting me know that I can get a discount on Viagra. It’s getting rather annoying, but good to know that I can get it for really cheap.

So if you read this book, and you should, it’s really good, and see this same conversation about Viagra and running endurance at altitude, don’t research it unless you want 50 spam e-mails a day. I thought I would put the warning out, even though my husband says I’m probably the only person stupid enough to actually go out and research the connection between Viagra and running after reading the book.

Training has been ok; I’ve come down with a viral infection and pleurisy of the lungs, so I’ve had to take the last couple of days off, but I’ve managed to get in a couple of 5 mile runs, a bike on my trainer, and a couple of strength training sessions.

I was also tagged by Slomo of Desert Rat Runner to list out 10 things that make me happy. Here goes:

1.) Running
2.) Reading great books
3.) Sunny days and there are a lot of them out here in Colorado.
4.) Going to the running store or REI
5.) Watching the snow fall while snuggled up next to my husband
6.) A yummy Stout beer. Or an IPA. Or a Kolsh. Or……
7.) Hugging my golden retriever
8.) When my daughter cleans her own bathroom. Hint, Hint.
9.) Good friends
10.) My new foam roller.

Ok everyone, I hope you have a great weekend and good luck to all of you out there who are racing this weekend! Can’t wait to read the reports!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Run Test and a New Roller.

No long run for me this past weekend; I had my run test instead. I’m sure that you’ve heard me bitching, I mean talking about these tests before, they are just a way to give my coach a good picture of where I am at in my fitness and re-set my heart rate zones if necessary. I usually don’t like them because they hurt, but this one honestly wasn’t too bad. My coach said that this was my best test ever!
I think that it was my best test because I downloaded the song “I Will Survive” onto my IPod and played it over and over while doing the test. Lady GaGa’s songs made an appearance too. Whatever works.

Here I am with my brand new foam roller. I have molested the one at the gym for far too long. I felt dirty every time I used the one at the gym because I have seen people using that thing in ways that I won’t speak of on this blog, so I went and purchased my own. Rick couldn’t believe that I paid $20 for the thing and asked why I just didn’t get a piece of foam at Home Depot. I told him that this was weighted foam and that it was different. Of course, I got the old eye roll from him. Non runners…geesh.

I was given the Gorgeous Blogger Award by Molly of I'm A Sleeper Baker. I have to list 6 things about myself.

1.) I love to read. I would much rather sit down with a good book then watch TV any day.
2.) Munchos potato chips are my favorite chips EVER. My mom used to get them for me as stocking stuffers instead of candy when I was little. Anyone heard of them?
3.) I love to cook and would love to take cooking classes one day. (I didn’t say I was a good cook, just that I loved it). I love coming home from work and making dinner.
4.) I love the color pink. When I was little, I always wanted to live in a pink house and drive a pink car. I still love pink, but now I’m more of a hot pink person and I don’t want to live in a pink house. I also wear mostly black and don’t have too many pink clothes. Hmmm.
5.) I hated coloring as a kid, but I used to sit for hours on end drawing my own paper dolls. One time, I drew the whole series of the Little House on the Prairie girls. I had Mary and Laura from the time they were little kids up until they were adults.
6.) My grandma, mom, and sister love doing crafts and making crafty things. My grandma even used to have her own craft store. I would rather eat dog crap (not that I would ever do it) then spend any time doing anything crafty. How are people who are in the same family so different? I am the only one who loves running.

Ok! Slomo of Desert Rat Runner also tagged me to list 10 things that make me happy. I accepted that challenge and will update that one in my next post. My brain can only think of so much in one sitting.

Ok, work has been crazy, so I'm catching up on blogs tonight! See you soon.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Ray of Sunshine and OMG...Heidi!

I received the Sunshine Award from two bloggers out there: AJH at Age Group Rocks and Katie at One Run At a Time. Thanks guys! I appreciate your little ray of “bloggie love”.

Now, I’m supposed to pass the award along to 12 bloggers. I realized that this award has been racing through the bloggie world, so if you’ve already been given the award, you obviously don’t have to pass it along again, just know that I enjoy all of your supportive comments and I appreciate that you take time out of your day to visit my blog. Actually thank you to everyone who visits the blog

Molly at I’m a Sleeper Baker
Jill at Run with Jill
Slomo at Desert Rat Runner
Beth at Shut Up and Run
Jesse at Run to the Border
Jennifer at The Running Artist
Meg at Meg Runs
Tx Runner Mom
Jamoosh at Das Mixture
Steve and Kathleen at Happy Trails
Lisa at Lisa Runs? Wait…What?
Julie at Julie's Running Blog

At lunch yesterday, I was reading an article about that Heidi girl from that reality show (I don’t watch reality TV, so I have no idea what show it is) that had the 10 plastic surgery procedures last fall all in one day. You know which girl I’m talking about? Well, the article was about how she didn’t get her boobs as big as she had wanted them, so she was ready to do another surgery for a second boob job. OMG! WTH? She already went from like an A to a triple F or something. What is her goal here? She was quoted as saying “We all want to feel attractive, so who is anyone to judge me?”

Now, none of us are completely happy with our bodies. I can honestly say that I will never have any type of plastic surgery, it’s just not worth it, I don’t care how saggy my butt is, but I don’t judge people who go under the knife to get that little needed confidence boost. If that’s what it takes to ease some insecurities about yourself; well then, go for it. I do however, feel horribly sorry for this young 23 year old girl who seems to be SO insecure with herself that she feels she needs to have multiple things done in order to live up to some sort of perfect body image. It’s very sad. What is she going to do when she gets in her 30’s and 40’s and things REALLY start sagging? OMG.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Still Clean.

I did my 16 miler on Saturday, it was less then stellar, but I made it. My legs actually felt pretty decent, but the trail conditions were what could only be described as “icky”. It was a half way decent day out, a little cloudy and a little windy, but I could deal with that; it was all of the snow and mud on the trail that threw me for a loop. I don’t know why I was surprised that there was snow on the trail, I mean, it is Colorado, it is February, and it did snow a little earlier in the week. I guess I just expected the trail to magically clear itself or something. The sad thing is that I bought a pair of Yaktraxs last week and being the idiot that I am, didn’t even think to bring them.

Now some of you might be wondering what became of my new white tennis shoes that I posted about last week with all of the mud/snow (I’m sure you aren’t, but let’s pretend for a moment shall we?). Well, let me assure you that my new Brooks Adrenaline are still clean and white and new. I may have forgotten my Yaktraxs, but I brought my old shoes along with me just in case there was mud. I’ve got my priorities straight.

Total mileage for last week was 30 miles. This week is rest and recovery. THANK GOODNESS, because I am tired. I’ve only got three runs total on my schedule, two swims, and a couple of easy bikes.

Alright folks, I’ll be checking in with you all shortly. I’m way behind on blogging due to work and NO; I don’t get President’s Day off! BOO!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A Little REI Shopping Spree.

Hi All! I must first apologize for blog slacking lately. I need to catch up on EVERYONE'S posts. I blame it on work, it has been busy again. The Auditor's have arrived in full force. They are like cockroaches coming out of the woodwork and they seem to breed and multiply. You turn down one hallway and there they are, so you rush into another hallway to avoid them and low and behold, there are more of them! I promise to catch up soon.

I went shopping this weekend. REI heard me coming and opened their doors wide open. Here, I am trying to model my new Brooks Adrenaline GTS 10. My daughter took the picture and you can’t see my feet very well because it is too dark. You can however, see my dog getting ready to lick my sweaty legs (I had just gotten off my treadmill) and the sweat stains under my arm pits. I am wearing a wife beater, so the pit stains are fitting.

Here is a better picture of my new shoes! I love getting new tennis shoes…so white and clean. I should have done a better job of hiding those sweaty arm pits, however.

This is my new shower curtain. I just threw this in here; obviously not running related. I also went to Bed Bath and Beyond.

I picked up some new Yak Traks to run in the snow. We have hardly gotten any snow this year, so when the forecast this past weekend called for snow, I rushed out to purchase a pair. We only got a measly 3 inches, so they’ll probably stay in the box.

I also picked up the Prefontaine book, “The Story of America’s Greatest Running Legend”. Has anyone read this yet? The last running book that I read was Dean Karnazes book “50 Marathons in 50 Days” and it was wonderful; I hope this one is just as good.

I got my 14 miler in last weekend! It felt great (of course, I ran it pretty slow) and I got to run with Jill! She was doing her 20 miler and we ran a little over 10 miles together. It was fun and the miles went by very quickly. Plus she showed me all of the great bathroom stops on my favorite running route.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Mentally Prepared or just mental?

My key run the other night went great; it felt so good to get a little bit of speed work for a change. My lungs and legs felt awesome throughout the whole zone 3 workout, although my lungs have been on crutches ever since.

I did my recovery run last night and some core/arm work. Total mileage so far for the week is 14 miles; tomorrow is my 14 miler, so that will be 28 miles for the week.

I am starting to get back up into my longer runs now, tomorrow 14 miles, next Saturday is 16 miles. The one thing that I have noticed is how calm I feel about the long run, which is such a difference from last fall when I first started training for a marathon. I would freak out every night before the run. Can I do it? What if I can’t make that mileage? What if I can’t make my goal pace!?!?

I think my calmness is because I have already conquered a big part of the mental game of marathon training. I have the confidence that I can do the mileage. When you’re confident, you can relax, trust your stuff and try to perform at your best. I don’t feel the pressure that I felt the first time around either. No one really expected me (miss gimpy lungs) to even get this far, so the fact that I am doing a 14 miler tomorrow is a shocker. We’ll see if I can go all the way AND how fast I'm able to do it.

Several people have asked me lately on some tips on how to become a vegetarian. While I am by no means expert at this, I do have a few tips that helped me.

1.) I gave up meat cold turkey the week in between my 12 and 14 mile run last fall. DO NOT DO THIS if you are training for a marathon! You are already putting enough stress on your body as it is; don’t shock it by going cold turkey like I did. Go slowly; maybe give up meat once or twice a week at first and then gradually thereafter. Or wait until after your marathon or big event and THEN start to cut out meat. I’m not saying that you can’t run a marathon while not eating meat; I’m doing it right now and feel great! Just be smart about it.
2.) Ease in by buying a few frozen entrees like Boca Flamegrilled burgers or spicy chicken or Morning Star buffalo chicken wings or riblets or the crumbles. Get used to these and then you can gradually try new things such as Tofu and Seitan. I personally like Seitan a whole lot better then tofu, I think that it has more of the consistency of meat. I still use the frozen "meat" crumbles for chili, tacos, and spaghetti.
3.) Have fun with it! Try a new vegetarian recipe once a week or one vegan/vegetarian product once a week. Last week, I tried soy butter AND grain sweetened chocolate chips and both of these are wonderful. Ask me for some great recipes if you want to try them.

Ok, that’s about all folks. I hope everyone has a great weekend of training. I’ve got a few blogs to catch up on, so see you soon!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Bucket List

I was tagged by Ulyana of Shaped by Running to give the three things that I must do before I die. I have many, many small goals that are on my “bucket list”, but I’ve never really thought of any BIG goals that I absolutely have to do before I get thrown into the ground or stuffed into an urn.

So, let’s give this a try:

1.) I absolutely must make the trek up to Machu Picchu (see picture above) or “The Lost City of the Incas” in Peru. My husband and I have been talking about this one for a few years now, but have never gotten to the point of actually planning it. We’ll get there someday.
2.) Qualify for Boston. I realize that this is pretty generic; the time goal for this one would be 3:45 for me. My short term goal is to just freaking run a marathon without hurting my foot or having like a pulmonary embolism or something.
3.) I want to get my pilot’s license. I have wanted to do this since I was a little girl. I wanna defy gravity!

I do have to say though, that if I died tomorrow; I would die knowing that I have already lived a full and satisfying life. One of my sister’s favorite quotes is”

“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.”

Training: I have a key run on my schedule tonight. According to my coach, key workouts are workouts designed for you to see a breakthrough in performance or effort. I work in heart rate zones with my coach and I have been mainly staying in zone 1 and 2 (slower heart rate) while running, tonight’s run will be my first time holding zone three (faster!) for longer then a few minutes at a time. I’m looking forward to it, I’m building back up! (Fist pump).

Monday, February 1, 2010

I Need About as Much Water as a Camel.

My 12 miler = DONE. I felt great the whole run. The secret to my success? I hydraded VERY well. I took a camelback with me instead of my fuel belt. Now that’s 40 plus ounces of water and let me tell you, I slurped that entire thing dry. Apparently, I need a shit ton of water in order to feel good, which is a problem because I haven’t quite mastered the “drinking from a cup handed to you from a volunteer while running” strategy that most people use during races. My husband told me that we could practice on my 14 miler this weekend. He would stand along my route, offer me water, and I would try to run while drinking from the cup without choking or spilling it all over myself. I know it sounds insane people, but unless I want to drag a tank behind me in the marathon, I really need to get the hang of this. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Sunday, I met Jill at the gym for a little weight session and then swim. I haven’t swum laps since college, so it was not very pretty, but Jill was very encouraging. I just love my new friend! I have wanted to get back into swimming for a while now, but I am usually so nervous that I’ll look like a drowning whale that I usually just go and stare at the water and never actually get in. It was nice to have someone to swim with and I actually got IN the pool this time and swam laps! I was exhausted. I had forgotten how much swimming takes out of you when you aren’t used to it. I drove all the way home, pulled into my driveway and realized that I couldn’t remember the drive home.

I hope everyone had a great weekend and has a wonderful week of training!