Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A New Look, a New Race



Everyone recovered from their candy hangover yet? I've got a good one, it might last all day....

It's a new month and I thought it was time for a new look. I was tired of the black background, so I decided to take the blog lighter for awhile, I'm sure I'll change it again.

If only I could take the hint and clean out my purse and make it lighter, I picked that thing up this morning and just about fell over. Who put the bowling ball in there? I have a bottle of Arnica cream, full size bottle of hairspray, 3 granola bars (you never know when you might need extra fuel), hand sanitizer, mini bottle of Scope, deodorant, 5 tampons (one for me and 4 other women in a time of emergency), $20 in nickels/dimes/quarters, and a Hawaiian spirit stick that says compassion.

One never knows when they might need a spirit stick.

A new month, a new look, a new purse (easier then cleaning out the old one), and a new race to start training and looking forward to.

I've signed up for the Carlsbad half marathon on January 22nd. This will be the first longer running race that I will have done since I screwed up my knee training for the Chicago Marathon last year. I haven't decided my goals for the race yet, but I have several friends doing either the half or full, so it will be a fun girl's weekend. Quite honestly, I don't want to get caught up in the whole goal/pace thing again. I am going to see what I can do in training, how my knee feels, and go from there. My main goal is to have fun and enjoy running again.

So far the training has been rather light and I've been doing most of my workouts in zone 1-2 HR (a.K.a easier), so I feel fresh, rested, recovered, and ready for the new training phase. I am also still swimming and biking for maintenance. I must admit that I am kind of hooked on doing the tris and I have a couple of bigger races in mind for next year.

Speaking of being well rested, last week we took a mini vacation over fall break and stayed in a little cabin in the mountains.



This place had spectacular views and overlooked one of Colorado's 14,000 ft peaks.



While I was there, I did a couple of trail runs and was just in awe of the views. I am so blessed to live here and really should spend more time appreciating the gorgeous mountains and landscape. When I first moved here 4 and a half years ago, I couldn't get enough of them, I could stare all day, but now I realize that I take the mountains for granted that they are "just there". This needs to change. Actually, there many things in my life that I take for granted and that needs to change too.



Off to clean out my purse. Anyone need a tampon? Spirit stick?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Things I Know for Sure about my Life

There are a few things in life that I know to be fact:

1.) The St. Louis Cardinals will be playing in the world series. The first game is tonight and I will be cheering them on. They will be taking that stupid rally squirrel with them. Most of you will have no idea what I am talking about when I mention their rally squirrel, consider yourselves lucky, although he is kind of cute.



2.) Fall is here and my favorite holidays are approaching. I've been busy making treat bags and planning on how I will scare unsuspecting trick or treaters.




3.) Fall is also my favorite time to go mountain biking, which is perfect because it is also my off season. I love riding in the crisp air and seeing the gorgeous fall color change of the Aspens.



I know for a fact that my daughter is beautiful and my puppy is adorable.



4.) I know that while I have enjoyed racing triathlons, I am ready to do some running races again, so I have signed up for an out of town half marathon and have even booked the flight.

Now, those of you who have been following me for awhile know that I do not have a good track record for out of town races. It seems as though once I finally manage to drag the ole credit card out and schedule a flight, something happens.

Examples: Two years ago, I booked a flight to San Antonio for the Rock and Rock Marathon. The very next day, I went and had a pulmonary embolism and couldn't run the race the following month.

Last year, I was a month out from the Chicago Marathon, so I figured I better book a flight, so I did. The next weekend, I ran my last 20 miler and hurt my ass muscle and my SI joint came out. Then it all went downhill from there. I won't bore you with the details, but I couldn't run that out of town marathon either.

So now, it is the day after I have booked my flight and I am dreaming up all kinds of horrible things that could happen in the next week. I am even thinking of purchasing some bubble wrap and wearing a helmet.

Surely, SURELY karma won't come back to bite me again. RIGHT? Please tell me it won't......

I also know for sure that I am behind in reading posts (as usual), so I'll see you soon

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A Day in the Life.....

Beth over at the Shut up and Run blog is having a contest where you can be entered to win a free shirt or free visor and to be entered to win, you have to blog about a day in your life. Now, let's face it, I'll do just about anything (I said almost anything people) for free stuff, so I'm in.

Before I begin, I would just like to apologize for my boring life.

My day begins anywhere between the hours of 5:00 to 6:30 in the morning, just depending on how many glasses of wine I have had the night before. I head downstairs and begin the task of showering and getting ready. I work as a Senior Accountant at a corporate headquarters for a company here in Denver, so I must look presentable on a daily basis.

Let me tell you, it's not easy to look presentable, I mean, look at this hair:

It usually takes me about an hour, but somehow I manage to pull myself together and head into the office around 7:30 to 8:00

Even if I'm not quite awake when I get there, I am usually shocked awake by the view outside my office. It's ok to be a little jealous; there's not many of you out there who get to look at a big ass blue and yellow sign outside the office window all day (what mountains?). That sign is 92 feet tall and I am sure you can probably see it from outer space. Thank goodness we are moving to a new building in the next couple of weeks.


Once at work, I work for the next 8 hours, or at least pretend to look like I know what's going on. Today, I am working on calculating revenue for our centers and booking the reserve on one of our biggest exposures that we have: our AR.

From 9:00-10:00, we have a meeting to go over this information. You awake out there? Me either.

I do a lot more then just work for 8 hours. I am in here for a good portion of the day.

because I try and drink about 3-4 of these every single day. Don't you wish you knew for sure what was in the bottle?


Today's lunch will be a bowl of Miso soup with tofu and some wheat crackers and I will get out the fart machine to play tricks on some poor unsuspecting person walking by my cube. This is a premium fart machine as it has up to 8 different fart sounds and a remote control.

After lunch, I book our bad debt expense and then start calculating our MSA payments. I yell and curse a little in frustration and then before I know it, it is time to go home.

Tonight I had a Brick on my schedule, so I did 45 minutes on the trainer and then a 20 minute run. All at easy pace.

Next up will be the dinner and wine and then off to bed in order to start the madness all over again tomorrow.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Molly's Virtual Fall 5K Race Recap


First and foremost, Happy Birthday to my sweet Mother!

This weekend I raced for not one, but two great fundraisers. Molly's Virtual 5K to benefit the Children's Tumor Foundation and The Band on the Run 2 Miler, which benefited the Smokey Hill High School Band.

I ran both because I wanted to support two of my friends from the blog world. Molly is hosting the virtual 5K and is running the New York City Marathon in five weeks (OMG Molly!) and my good friend Jill's son is a member of the H.S. Band.

OK, I'll make these race reports short. I know how you people hate for me to drone on and on.

Saturday was the run for the band and I awoke to 38 degree temps and snow. WHOOT! To me, this is perfect racing temps. I met Jill at the high school and we literally ran over to the start, so I could register and be ready for the 9:00 start time. She wasn't racing because she was running the Denver R&R half marathon the following day, which, I might add, she totally kicked booty in with a 1:52 time!

When the "gun" went off, I was gone. I was a very intrigued by this race because I haven't done any type of real speed work since I came back from my knee surgery in May, so I had no clue what I could do pace wise in a pure running event. Questions about what pace I should run flowed heavily through my mind; being injured can be a total confidence sucker and my ego has taken a total downward spiral lately. However, since the race was only 2 miles, I was like "meh, let's just go for it". The first mile split was at a 7:52 pace and the second was at a 7:37 pace, with an overall time of 15:29 and a 7:44 pace. Good enough for 1st place in my age group and the best thing is that it succeeded in making a HUGE boost in my running confidence. Might I add that this race was VERY small, hence the age group placing.

At home, after the race, all smiles.

Sunday, with a renewed sense of confidence in my running abilities, I ran Molly's Virtual 5K. You know, sometimes, all it takes is just a little thread of hope and everything seems to just falls into place. At the end of my 2 mile race yesterday, I felt amazing, like I could keep on running, so I mirrored the 5k after my race the previous day.

PIC: starting off on my 5K in my prize from the "Band on the Run" 1st in AG Prize! A reminder that "Yes, I can do it!"


PIC: 1st in AG prize from the front.


Like I said, I mirrored my 5K like the 2 mile race the day before. The first mile, I started out at a bit of a downhill and had to actually hold the pace back a little to a 7:50 pace. It was once again a sunny, yet crisp, cool 38 degrees and my absolute favorite running temperature. I am a Colorado girl at heart!!

The second mile was at a slight uphill pace, but I KNEW I could still negative split from the first mile, so I held fast at a 7:39 pace. This one was a little tough due to the uphill, so I had to pull out all the stops and use LMFAO's "Sexy and I Know It". Yeah, whatever...it worked.

I wanted to negative split that last mile down from the 7:39 pace, so that last mile was tough for me. I was on the verge of puking my Wheaties Fuel and stopping, so I thought about all of my friends who were racing the Denver Half Marathon and the Chicago Marathon at that very moment and I knew that they were probably struggling, so they were my inspiration to keep moving forward. I also thought about my triathlon coach and the fact that she kicked some total ass at the Kona Ironman National Championships the day before with a 10:22:xx overall time and a 10 minute PR. Total badass.

I thought of how great these women were and what I wanted to accomplish next year and all of my goals for the 2012 year exploded in clarity in my head and I pulled out the last mile in a 7:10 pace.

Ummm, goals were set aside when I realized that I was in a world of hurt and ran the last .2 at a 7.43 pace.

AND DONE. Ok, it looks like I was a little overzealous on the course (probably while I was dreaming about running a 3:30 marathon) and ran 3.20 miles instead of a typical 5K of 3.1. OOPS. 3.20 in 24.20 is a 7:36 pace, so a typical 3.1 5K course would have taken me a time of :

23.35.

Not a 5K PR, but shit, I will take it!!!! I haven't seen those numbers IN A LONG TIME. Whoot, two races in two days with paces in the 7 minute mile range. Ok, time to run slow again for the next few weeks.

Congratulations to all of you who ran the Denver half or Chicago Marathon and were my heroes yesterday. You know you who are! You guys are my total inspiration to dig deep inside of me next year and be the athlete that I know I can be.

And to Molly who is dedicating her NYC Marathon to help children with cancer; kudos to you, thank you for hosting this 5K race!

Have a great week my friends!



Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Crescent Moon Sprint Triathlon Race Report



A few weeks ago, I raced my second sprint triathlon. Everyone has had one of those races that they would just like to erase from their minds, well, this was mine. It was even worse then my marathon last year where I puked all over the side of the road at mile 2. For every one thing that went right in my first triathlon, two things went wrong at this one.

Race Morning
After only three hours of sleep, I stumbled out of bed and got dressed. My brain was just a foggy mess from lack of sleep and I even forgot to put on my usual race mascara. Gasp. I scarfed down a banana and half a peanut butter bagel and then I was off to the race site.

Once there, I quickly hit up registration, set up my bike in transition, and went to check out the swim course. The temperature that day was supposed to be 85 degrees, but the morning was cool and foggy and steam rose up from the lake. I shivered and stared at the lake. The buoys were spread out and the swim looked long. I have only swam in open water twice before, so I told myself that I had swam this distance many times in the pool, but in my mind, it looked like it was a 20 mile swim and my confidence tanked right then and there and of course, my stomach dropped.



The Swim
I lined up in the back, which is quickly becoming my favorite starting place for the swim, and tried not to puke in the sand or crap my wetsuit. When the gun sounded, I bounded into the water and EOWWEE almost ran back out. The water temps were in the 60's and it was cold. I gingerly pushed forward and started swimming. Once I put my head under, the cold water shocked my system and my head flew back out. I started gasping for breath, but couldn't get any air. Someone whacked my head from behind and I started panicking. This is the sort of freak out that figured I would do in my first tri, but I never did, I was relaxed the whole swim, so here it was, the great freak out in my second triathlon. You would have thought I was being attacked by man-eating fish out there, the way I was thrashing around.

By this time, people were swimming over me, so I had to get out of the way. I looked to the shore and told myself to just end it right now. GET OUT. I thought about it, but something in me just told me to "KEEP MOVING", so I did. With my head out of the water. I wasn't going to put my head back in that cold ass lake. I swam free stroke until my right arm came out of the water and someone whacked me from behind again. DAMMIT people. I felt something click in my chest and my chest and back started to hurt. Well crap. The first thing I thought of was that I had another pulmonary embolism. OMG, OMG! It hurt to swim freestyle, so I resorted to the breast stroke. Yep, breast stroked most of my second triathlon.

To make a long story short, I finally made it out of the water and started making my way up to transition. I sat down on one of the steps and gasped for breath and told myself to just turn in my chip and go home and get some sleep. But that stupid, little perky irritating other voice told me to get the hell up. I can make up the time on the bike and run.

Swim time plus run (OK, I walked it) up to transition. 24 minutes. Felt like the LONGEST SWIM EVER.

Transition:
Not much going on in there. And I do mean not much, I think I was the only person in there since I took so long to swim. Time: 1:33

The Bike
The bike course was a mix of hills and flat, but I had ridden the course the previous weekend at a 19.3 MPH pace and I was confident that I could make up some time from that lousy swim.

Right.

Once on my bike, I noticed that my chest was still hurting and I couldn't get down into the aero bike position. WTH was going on!* So much for purchasing the aero bars. At least I have a picture of me with them...sorta in aero.



*The following Monday, I went to the doctor and discovered that I had strained my intercostal muscle. YAY ME! I am probably the only person on the face of this earth who has strained a rib muscle while swimming.

I settled into a nice ride until the first hill came up and I pushed both gears for my chain rings at the same time and started up the hill. I pedaled and nothing happened, I spun and spun and spun, but nothing happened. I finally got off my bike and looked. I had dropped my chain. And it was stuck behind the chain ring and the chain stay and I couldn't for the life of me, get it released. I laughed. Then I cried. I glad I wasn't wearing my race mascara.

Finally, one of the dudes on the course ran over and yanked the chain out, spun my tires, and declared me good to go. I looked at him as he ran back to the course and thought "I'm not sure I want to go." I dried my tears and wiped the snot off my nose and got back out there and finished that thing.

Bike Time: My bike computer said 18.1 MPH, but my official time (because on race day, it doesn't matter what your computer says because it doesn't stop when you have chain issues) was 16.6 MPH, which means I dorked around with my chain for about 3 minutes.

I know.....you wish you had skillz like me.

T2
Went in, couldn't find my towel, scowled at all of the elites who were done and standing around, finally found my towel and left. Yep, I left through the bike entrance and almost got myself plowed by a rider. It might actually have been good to put me out of my misery at that point.

Time: 1:19

The Run
By this time, I was like "Meh, who cares what my time is, let's just get this thing done." The first half mile was uphill. I don't know why I look like such a funktard in this next running picture. I guess that is just what I look like while I am running uphill with a bad rib muscle.

Note to self, fix running gait while running uphill



Like I said, the first 1/2 mile was uphill and after that it was a mix of gently rolling hills. Once I was on the run course, my legs just seemed to take over and knew what to do. I am a runner at heart. I suck at swimming, tolerate biking, but I absolutely love to run. This was the only part of the tri where I felt relaxed and comfortable. Probably because I didn't give a shit anymore.

Run Pace: 8:34


AND DONE. Total time was 1:35, which is actually 3 minutes faster then my first triathlon.


I was so very happy to see my friend Jill (who took this picture), my husband (not sure why his hat is like that), and my sweet puppy Piper!

Thanks for coming out and cheering me on Jill! I sure appreciated the support!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Random Friday Musings

Cheers to the weekend.


- I know that title is probably extremely misleading. The "musings" part leads one to believe that they have arrived on some kind of blog with deep thoughts and intense contemplation. Right. I am SO not a deep thinker. I even had to look up the word musing.

- This was supposed to be an actual post, but I just got back into town from a business trip and I got tired of staring at the blank screen with no words coming into my head. Lack of sleep has my brain fuzzy and the thought of writing an actual comprehensive blog post just hurts my head. Or it might have been the late night wine. I guess we'll never know.

- Silk Chocolate soy milk is one of my favorite post workout treats. Wonder what it would taste like if they made soy milk in a "cake batter" flavor.

- I raced another sprint triathlon recently and I have yet to put a race report up. It was my second triathlon and as good and as fun as the first race was, this one was equally as bad. I totally freaked out on the swim because of the cold water and rain and couldn't put my head in the water. No really, there were polar bears floating on ice caps out there. Ok, maybe there weren't, but it really was cold and I wigged out in the open water. I then had a bike malfunction during the bike portion and cried like a little girl. I am truly glad that I wasn't wearing my usual "race mascara". That would not have been pretty. My time was better then the first triathlon and my run time was better, but really, there is no other way to put it other then: I sucked it.

- I really need to revamp this blog. Even I'm getting turned off by the colors and layout. And hey! Did you know that it has been 355 days since my last race? Yeah....time for that to go.

- My race season ends with only three events: The Copper Triangle bike ride, which was an 80 mile ride over three mountain passes and a net elevation gain of 6,000 feet and two sprint triathlons. Three events leave me hungry for more.

- It has been in the upper 80's here in Denver and I am ready for fall weather. I say this and it will probably snow next week.

- Currently searching for 2012 race events, but for now, it is time to rest, relax, and enjoy fall and pumpkin spice lattes.

- I should have labeled this post Random Friday Crap.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I *Heart* Swimming

Well it's September. I figure I better go ahead and get my September post up since a once a month posting is about my average these days.

After my first triathlon, I sat down and thought about what worked and what didn't work for me during the race.

Here's what worked:

1.) The bike. My average MPH wasn't bad, it could be faster, but that will come with more bike training.
2.) My nutrition. I think I know the right amount of fluids and nutrition that I need during the bike and run.
3.) My T2 transition time of 38 seconds. I had the fastest in my age group and fourth fastest overall. I think I should get a medal for this.

What didn't work:

1.) Lolly gagging around during the swim. There's no reason to be thinking about the mud and plants under my feet or all the decaying dead bodies at the bottom of the lake that were staring up at me as I was swimming over them (I need to stop watching Forensic Files)
2.) Sitting down and staring at my feet in T1.
3.) Having to walk/run the run portion.

I think the run portion will work itself out as my cardio comes back to me. I'm not sure what to say about the feet thing in T1, hopefully that won't happen again, so I guess the one thing left to really work on is the swim part. I need to get some confidence in my swimming.

Here's what usually happens when I go to the pool:

Oh look at me, playing around taking pictures under the water. Thank goodness I shaved my armpits.



My friend Jill and me. Lookie at our pink kick boards, aren't they pretty? They are kids sized, but we ordered them anyway because everyone needs a pink kick board.



I decided that I am going to get serious about swimming, so I signed up at "The Swim Labs" swim school to have my swim stroke analyzed. The unique thing that the Swim Lab does is they put you into a giant tank of water also known as the endless pool, which creates a current down the middle of the pool. This current allows you to swim in the endless pool while a swim instructor evaluates your swim stroke and video equipment record you as you are swimming so that you can see the areas of inefficiency and what needs to be improved upon.

I walked up in there pretty excited about my lesson and the first thing I notice is all the little kids running around. I'm the only adult with a swimsuit on. Peachy. The rest of the adults are gathered around a huge glass plated window where they are able to view all lessons that are happening in the endless pools.

Well shit.

Then I notice all of the TV monitors located above the viewing area where you could watch as they video taped the swim lesson/analysis.

Well crap.

My swim instructor came out to get me and I immediately ask him about the cameras.

"Yes, those are there so that parents can watch their children" he replied.

"But my parents aren't here! Does my lesson have to be broadcast!!!"

I must have looked absolutely mortified because he assured me that the parents would be watching their children and not my lesson.

Right. Why would you watch your kids when there is a floundering whale trying to stay afloat in the middle tank.

I quickly forget that I was in a giant fishbowl with an audience once I became absorbed in my lesson. The lesson itself was pretty cool and it was neat to be able to swim and then watch the video replay on the monitors. He also put me swimming side by side with an Olympic swimmer and pointed out what I needed to improve on. Overall, my stroke is actually pretty good and he gave me a few pointers and swim drills that I could work with the next time I go to the pool.

If you are a competitive swimmer or just suck like I do in the pool and want to improve, I would highly recommend finding a place similar to the swim lab and having your stroke analyzed. I found it to be a fun and useful experience.

Well this has gotten to be a novel and I'm sure no one really wants to read a book on a swim lesson, so I'll be signing off now.









Monday, August 29, 2011

Iron Girl Boulder Sprint Triathlon

Now don't fall out of your chair, but for those of you who are actually still following me, yes I am alive and posting.

This past weekend, I raced the Iron Girl Boulder Sprint Triathlon, which was the first race that I have done in over a year. On May 23rd, I had knee surgery after dealing with knee pain for the past 9 months, so Iron Girl was my comeback race and needless to say, I was stoked to get back to racing.

It was also my first triathlon.

Race Morning:
The stupid alarm went off at 4:50. Really, WTH was I thinking? I reset the alarm and promptly fell back asleep until 5:20 rolled around. At 5:23, I stumbled down the stairs so that I could check my list for the sixth time to make sure I had all my gear. The night before, my dog had taken off with my race belt and bib, so I was a little paranoid that she had hidden something else, like a bike shoe, which would not have been good. All was accounted for and after a pee and a quick application of mascara, I was ready to go.

Roll your eyes over the mascara, I don't care, I can't race without it. I wore pink too. Shoot me.

The drive from Denver to Boulder took less then an hour and before I knew it, I was setting up in what is called the transition area. This was the first indication that I was clueless as to what was going on. Thank goodness Beth came over and helped me set my stuff up and gave me a few quick pointers on what was to happen. THANK YOU BETH.




Yes, I wore my wetsuit, I wanted the buoyancy factor.


We were booted out of transition at approximately 7:00, it was time to go swim. Crap.

The Swim:
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am not a swimmer, so I was extremely nervous about the swim. I lined myself up in the back of my age group and waited with the other 171 women who were in my age group and prayed that I wouldn't drown.
When the gun went off, I leisurely strolled into the water, trying not to get grossed out by all of the mud and plants that were squishing around under my feet. Nasty. Once the water was about chest high, the thought occurred to me that I should probably start to swim, so I plopped down in the water and took off. If I must.
If there was any part of this race that surprised me, it was the swim. Once I started swimming, I took it nice and easy and I felt very calm and relaxed. I started in the very back, yet my husband said that I was in the first 1/3 to exit the water.
Here I am taking my leisurely exit out of the water.


Seriously, I am in a race here, let's move it a little, the entrance and exit ARE part of the total swim time.

Total swim time - 10:08

T1:
At this point, I just wanted to sit down for awhile; I have never wished for a lawn chair so hard in my life. I peeled off my wetsuit and plopped down on the ground and stared at my feet for what seemed like an eternity until I reminded myself this was no time to stare at my feet.

Total time - 2:41.

The Bike:

With the exception of a 4 mile gradual uphill at the start, the bike course was nice and flat with some fun rolling hills at the end. I didn't want to kill my legs for the run, so I took the bike at a high cadence, low resistance approach.

You should have seen all of the fancy tri bikes some of these woman owned, seriously, I was drooling over them. I have a full carbon Trek Madone 5.1, but I felt like I was cruising around on a ghetto jalopy with a basket and a kickstand. I could actually hear the bikes coming up behind me with their whooshing wheels. It was awesome and I made the decision that I want one of those bikes or at least a set of clip on aero bars so I can go faster on the bike.

I haven't told the husband yet.

I rolled in at 57:36 minutes or 18 mph and headed to T2



T2:
Not wanting to give myself time to even think about sitting down in my imaginary lawn chair, I raced in, threw off my helmet, changed shoes and took off in 38 seconds. So fast, that I forgot my race bib. Oops, I guess I should have just let the dog keep it.

Run:

By the time I got to the run, it was hot, with no shade and anyone who has been or lived in Colorado knows that the intensity of the sun can be brutal. I *ran* the first mile and then developed a terrible side stitch, so I had to walk/run the rest of the race. I feel no shame in the walk/run. I have only been back to running for a little over a month since I couldn't run for 6 weeks after the knee surgery. My cardio is not where it should be right now, but with more training, that run time will come down. I have waited so long to be able to run again.

Total run time 27:50. 8:58 pace.



Total Race Time: 1:38:53
Division Place: 41/165
Overall Place: 151/814



I must say that my first triathlon experience was new and exciting. The energy at Iron Girl Boulder was phenomenal and I was so happy to be able to take part in the race. Athleta puts on one hell of an event and I will definitely be back next year.

I have been out of the race scene for over a year now because of injury and I have a whole new appreciation on listening to my body and knowing when to rest and when to work hard. I have waited a long time to be able to cross a finish line again and I have to tell you, I was not disappointed.



Thursday, March 10, 2011

Breathe


Test. Test. Is this thing on?

Well hello, yes I realize that I haven't blogged in two months. Mainly because I've spent the last two months running around from one thing to the next and it seems like it never stops.

Honestly, there are times when I feel like I am in perpetual motion and everyone else is just standing still. I know this is not the case, everyone is busy, but at some point, life/work has to slow down or I'm going to go nutso. My normally happy-go-lucky disposition seems to have been replaced by a raving lunitic who has to keep reminding herself to "stay calm...stay calm...stay calm...please do not yell at that innocent person".

Ok, I realize that you didn't come here to hear me ramble like a crazy person.

Breathe

Running. Because that's what we all like to talk about.

I'm still injured, but it is getting better and better every week. I think for the most part, my ITB issues are a thing of the past, yet I still have just a little bit of odd knee pain that my PT keeps telling me to run through. Umm...right.

Enter Acupuncture.

Above anything else, I think this has been doing the trick for me lately. I was skeptical at first, but after the first session, I noticed a marked improvement in my running. My first run after acupuncture, I still felt the pain, but I didn't start to feel it until about 40 minutes into the run. Normally, my knee would start to ache after about 25 minutes in. I've had a few sessions and now I am able to run hills and I couldn't before and I am slowly increasing the pace ever so slightly.

Is Acupuncture just a placebo? Does it really work? My answer is WHO THE HELL CARES. I am getting better and I am hopeful, so why should I care if I'm just tricking my mind.

It is also helping me to relax. Every session I go in with my pulse racing, stressed, and ready to scream. My acupuncturist takes my pulse, tells me to relax, deep breathe, listen to my body, and let it go. I don't know when my life will get less hectic, I am crossing my fingers that it will be soon, but I do know that I have never felt more relaxed then when I am laying there on that table with needles sticking out of my body.

Or maybe it's the wine that helps me to relax. I forget.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

If I Could Turn Back Time......

A little Cher for you this afternoon. Minus the skimpy hooker outfit and the big hair.

You young whippersnappers out there probably have NO idea of what I’m talking about.

My doctor officially cleared me to run last week. I am starting back slowly, to make sure that my ITB doesn’t have a return flare up, but I am hoping to be back to running on my own and without the guidance of my Physical Therapist by mid-February. It’s been almost four months since my last “real” run, which was just three weeks shy of the 2010 Chicago Marathon. If I could turn back time (there's that Cher reference), I would have been smarter about the injury; had I just STOPPED RUNNING AND RESTED, I might have been at that starting line. Instead I kept pushing on and pushing on, trying to get myself to my marathon. I have beaten myself up about this numerous times, but what's done is done.

Random picture of me mountain biking since I don't have pics of me running....yet.


I have vowed to come back from this injury smarter and stronger. I know I'm not a natural long distance runner; I need a combination of strength work, stretching (what the hell is this?), and cross training to get me to the starting line of a marathon, so that's what I'm going to do. My Coach always put strength work and stretching on my schedule, but I would ignore the stretching and would just focus on the arms for strength work. Who knew my legs needed so many damn squats!!!!

Random pic of Colorado...because it's pretty.



Random pic of a tarantula from our bike ride...because it was scary and ugly.



I have learned so much about my body because of this injury; it's almost a blessing in disguise.

Ok, so my 2011 schedule. Well, right now it's tentative, but since I have been swimming so much, I have a couple of triathlons in sight for the spring and summer. I may or may not do a marathon this year....time will tell on this one. I may have something else in store for the fall. Hmmmm....we'll see.

Anyway, this is by no means final yet, but here it is:


Duathlon May 2011
Tune-Up Tri (indoor swim) June 2011
Boulder Sunrise Century (that's 100 miles people!) Road Ride June 18th 2011
Triathlon (lake swim!) July 2011
Georgetown to Idaho Springs Half-Marathon August 2011
Chicago Marathon-I have unfinished business here. If I don't make it this year, next year is a must. Revenge will be sweet.

So that's a start. I'm sure I'll add more races later on, but for now...it's a fresh start.

BTW-I ran again this morning. NO PAIN.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Bloggie Gift Exhange -Proud Owner an Anus Cup and a Thermajock.

Now don’t fall out of your chair, but yes, you are seeing an actual blog post from me. It’s been so long since I’ve posted, I almost forgot how to use blogger.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas (or whatever you celebrate) and New Years! I just got back from what Jill calls my “trek across the US”. I spent four days visiting my family and friends in Missouri and then four days with my husband’s family in Dallas. I know you are jealous, I mean, who wouldn’t be.

I made a few goals for myself to follow on my trip:
1.) No blogging or reading blogs, so that I could give my full focus to my family.
2.) Drink and be merry, but NO HANGOVERS.
3.) Eat myself into no less then two food comas.

Score on all three. Here are a few photos from our trip:


Me with my brother and sister. My sister surprised me with her red/brown hair. She's normally a blonde like me!




My daughter and me hugging my in-laws two Great Pyrenees dogs. They are beautiful!



My husband and me



My daughter wanted to hold one of my in-laws baby goats. You can tell she's a city slicker.



When I got home, my Christmas gift from Jill's Holiday Gift Exchange was waiting for me!!! Quinton or "Q" as we know him, sent me two Vanilla Gingerbread GU's (to eat by the fireplace), an official Anus Cup to sip my favorite beverage from (wine from an anus mug), and not one, but TWO Christmas Thermajocks (is that REALLY what these are? I think he may be trying to make me look like an idiot, which wouldn't be hard too do).



I was a little baffled at first by the Thermajocks, I had no idea what they were.



Thumb less mittens??



Dog shoes?



Then I read his card and realized that they were the infamous thermajocks. For those who don't know, The Thermajock is used to protect the penis from cold and chafing during cold weather activities. You all didn't realize that I had one of those did you. For your convenience, I linked the website, so you can go read the testimonials from the men who have used them. You can also find them on facebook should you be so inclined.

I was also extremely pleased that he sent me an anus cup. In my previous post, I blogged about how I had found an anus plate on the web (I know!) and that I was going to send one to my blog exchange person. Amanda wanted to know if I actually sent the plate, so I wanted to let her know that no, I didn't end up buying and mailing the plate, it was too expensive and I'm way too cheap and redneckish to spend my money on fancy anus art. I sent Molly, a ponytail headband from TrailHeads instead. Boring....I know.

Anyway, thank you Q for my Christmas gifts!!! I especially loved seeing the fat ass, pleasantly plump snow man again (as well as my own fat ass!). I should have taken a picture of the card, it was so creative.

This post is getting ridiculously long, so I'll go now. Next post, I'll talk about my running (yup, starting this week!) and 2011 goals. For now, Happy New Year!