Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Triple Tangent Tuesday

These won't be necessarily be tangents since I won't be speaking on them ad nauseam. More like crap taking up space in my head right now.

1. Quite frankly, I need to cut the shit and get back on track. Not just with training, which I have severely slacked on in the last week.  Not the best time considering MCM is 8 weeks away. Case in point, blowing off this morning's track workout. In general I've spent the last week, up through last night and into this morning, indulging in some serious character flaws. And it needs to stop. It isn't good for me and for the people that care about me so it is time for some self imposed tough love. Get it together, girl. And do it fast.

2. Fall semester starts this week and my first class is Thursday night.  It won't be nearly as intense as summer semester was, but I won't say I'm going into this without reservation. I will have the same professor as I did before, which is a bonus. I know his teaching style and how he grades.  Now I just need to tackle the material itself.  And honestly, I could care less about APA style but it is going to be a crucial part of this class so I need to suck it up and learn to use it properly.

3. Despite all the upheaval of the past year, the fall and September in particular is my favorite time.  My birthday is coming up, my parents are going to be in town for my gig that month, baseball and football are on television, I'm running my first trail half-marathon (with my big sis!), school is starting, and temperatures in general become so much more manageable. I start to think about Halloween and all the other great things that come in the months that follow. The smells in the air, the comfortable clothes, the appearance of pumpkin-flavored delights in all the coffee shops. It is really important to my sanity these days that I take a minute to remember these little things that make me smile and give me something to look forward to.

What do you do to get yourself out of a bad state? What is your favorite season and why? Is knowing APA style professionally valid yet ultimately annoying?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Random Friday Facts

1. Eating/drinking/smoking is a perfectly acceptable way to escape your problems.

2. Until the next morning.

3. This hurricane business is really going to jack up my weekend if it does what they say it is going to.

4. I'm pretty sure I'm going to have a sleepover with the band tomorrow night after the gig.

5. If you ask the Universe to intercede on your behalf, it will. And in the most unusual ways.

6. I think I'm going to leave work early today. Just because.

7. Other than closing my windows and making sure I have enough snacks and movies, I'm not sure what other kind of hurricane prep is really necessary. Floaties for the cats?

8. "Just keep swimming" is actually a pretty darn good mantra to tell yourself.

9. My stock "portfolio" is made up of fun things like Dunkin Donuts.  Should probably take my retirement a little more seriously.

10. I'm a deadbeat library card holder.  I never remember to return on time or pay my fines.

11. I rarely enjoy books that other people recommend to me.  But I still keep asking for recommendations.

12. If time and money were no object right now, I'd be taking classes for yoga teacher certification.

13. I don't keep photocopies or notes on my credit cards cards.  If my wallet was ever stolen I'd probably just be screwed.

14. I think the perfect running shoe exists, I just haven't found it yet.

15. I still like the smell of Sharpies, Dry Erase markers, and White Out. Also, gasoline.

16. I think I exhibit early signs of hoarding, but more because I'm too lazy to throw crap out, not because I actually want to keep everything.

17. I don't have cable television.

18. I've had 4 or 5 iPods in my life and have yet to actually pay for one myself. Score, so far.

19. I own more running watches than regular watches.

20. I miss the pre-Facebook/social networking days. A lot. But not enough to cancel my account. D'oh.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

This is where I am today. Just.....yeah. Something good needs to happen this week.  Just one good thing.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


This DC blogger is shook up and scared but okay.  Everyone, please check in!

track tuesdays

Today's goal was to leave it all on the track.  I wasn't sure I had it in me today, but I'm pleased with how it ended up.  One mile warm up, 4x1200s with 400 recovery, and then 2x400 and a 2 lap cool down. Here are the times for the 1200s, they were a bit all over the place.  I didn't think I had anything left after 3 but I'm glad I tried the 4th because it ended up being the best of the lot.

5:50, 6:05, 5:57, 5:48

I was content to stop after the 1200s but my running buddy suggested just one or two 400s and I didn't have a good reason not to try. I'm glad I did.

1:48, 1:42

I know I'm not a speed demon by any stretch of the imagination but I'm happy with my times. I can tell that after just a few interval workouts that I am improving, and Coach George told me it was my best workout so far. That definitely made me smile, something that was desperately needed this morning.

Did anyone else start their day off with a workout today?  What did you do?

Monday, August 22, 2011

A little Monday mush

Happy Monday, everyone.  I hope you're at least partially recovered from whatever weekend shenanigans you got into. Don't go working too hard today.  Ease into it, there are four more days just like this one to get things done on that to do list. Sometimes just showing up is enough! Are these words of wisdom any indication of how productive I have been today? Yes. At any rate, I just got back in from a late lunch hour run.  Four miles without a watch, 83 degrees and breezy.  My legs felt really good, 48 hours after having run 18 miles.  My calves were being their usual stiff selves. I think if I'd worn my compression sleeves I would have avoided that problem. It was with much sadness that I took them off yesterday before heading out for drinks and band practice. The purple just didn't go with the denim shorts and orange tank top.

Last week was my second week in a row of 30+ miles and I feel really good about it. My body seems to be handing it well too. I've never had a 30+ mile week before in my life. Looking back on how I felt about the marathon before training started, I've come a long way. Not just in miles, but mentally. My mental game is my biggest weakness and I feel it getting stronger with every mile I bank. Through books, blogs, and my own creative thinking I've learned so many ways to stay motivated and keep putting one foot in front of the other. I honestly can't believe I did 18 miles this weekend.  I look at the picture of the Garmin and it doesn't seem real.  I'm so grateful for all the support and kind words that I have gotten from friends, family, and blog followers (some of you being a little of all three!).  I feel like I have this incredible team with me on every run, and it is the love and pride I feel from you that keeps me going when the miles get tough. I don't generally say that I am proud of myself; I don't know how to accept that feeling without also feeling selfish or boastful. But right now, thanks in large part to my team, I can say that I am proud without regret. I know there are many miles left to go before the race but I am not afraid anymore. I never thought I'd be able to say that, either. I don't know what I expected to get out of this blog and this training adventure, but it has been amazing.

I'd really like to hear what you've learned about yourself through your training experiences, as it relates to running or just to life in general. Running is a great metaphor for so many other parts of life.  Also, did you race this weekend? Did you eat, sleep, laugh, and dream this weekend?  I hope so and I can't wait to read all about it! Much love!

Saturday, August 20, 2011


One bloody toe later, I did it!  Eating breakfast now, then a shower and a long nap. :) Can't stop smiling!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Random Friday Facts

1. I am wearing my purple compression sleeves under my khakis at work right now and have no plans to take them off EVER.
2. I don't know anyone's phone number except my parents. If I lost my cell phone, I'd be screwed.
3. I don't understand the symbols for laundry that are printed on some of my clothes. What do they mean??!!
4. I've owned my car for 6 years and still need to doublecheck which side the fuel door is on.
5. Combining potato chips, american cheese, and mustard makes a delicious snack.
6. I check the oven knobs before I leave the house almost every day and will go back if I forget.
7. I'm scared to ride my bike to work and I wish someone would do it with me the first time.
8. I don't care what they say, my fingernails are indeed tools.
9. I look forward to be the cranky old bat when I'm 90. HA!
10. I should change the sheets on my bed more often.  Or do more laundry in general.
11. I'm actually nervous to try out my new running shoes. I don't know why.
12. Last week I briefly considered signing up for my second marathon and I haven't run my first yet.
13. My office desk drawer currently has 7 different flavors of tea bags in it.
14. There are no jobs for me in Virginia. None. I'm doomed to have a 1 hour DC commute.
15. My sister and I are contemplating running at 5k at 6 pm on the same day we race a 1/2 in the morning. Idiots.
16. My fridge is full of half-meals. As in, I don't ever seem to buy everything needed to make something, just a bunch of crap that looks good but never really combines into anything.
17. I'll spend $23 on a bag of cat food without batting an eye but $5.00 for a decent block of cheese freaks me out.
18. I don't always shower after an intense workout.  Sometimes air drying and slapping on extra deodorant is the best I can do.
19. I feel compelled to always make it to an even 20 with these weekly facts.
20. I think I'm the only person who does not wish they could relive high school or college days. I just didn't have a good time.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

triple tangent thursday

Or, why does this week suck, in three parts.

1. School is damn expensive and while it may be overly dramatic I feel like my heart is going to break over this credit card debt due to tuition.  Long story short, I am taking classes that earn credit that count towards the degree but I am not officially enrolled (yet) so I don't qualify for financial aid.  Hence tuition payments on a credit card. I just feel trapped by the balance and since money doesn't grow on trees all I can do is pay what I can when I can and try not to get overwhelmed. So far, it isn't working. I need to remember the long term goal of having an MA but so far it is little consolation. The only temporary solution I can think of, as my next payment looms, is that I open another credit card that offers a temporary 0% rate for a few months, and charge the tuition to that.  See if not having monthly fees on top of the balance helps me breath. Thoughts?

2. Everything feels gray this week. Just...blah. My runs have been meh.  My energy is meh.  My level of giving a shit about anything at all has been meh. And since I can't put a finger on something specific, I'm just wallowing in the murky meh-ness of it all and hoping next week hurries up.  At least I am not anxious or worried about my run this weekend. All 18 miles of it. I'm either actually ready for it, or the meh-ness of everything makes me too gray to care.

3. These just arrived at work and a teeny tiny smile crept on my face. New Kinvaras will have to wait until Tuesday's track workout. Zensah compression sleeves will be on my legs in 3.....2........1......

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Semi-Wordless Wednesday

Apologies for the crap camera phone pics but the food was just too good not to share. Restaurant Week 2011, Tosca. 

Salad of radicchio and Bartlett pears with imported Gorgonzola cheese terrine
and toasted walnuts

Tortelli filled with Robiola cheese and black truffles served with a Porcini mushroom sauce and leeks
Warm chocolate cake with figs poached in port wine and stracciatella ice cream
And........a bottle of wine :) YUM!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Things NOT to do before a track workout:
- go out the night before and eat a really rich dinner during Restaurant Week
- drink 2 beers and half a bottle of wine
- run in an old pair of shoes because how bad can they really be?
- wear running clothes you know cause chafing

This morning's track workout was not my best showing. I scraped by with a meager two sets of alternating 1600s and 800s. During the second 1600 I admit that I quit for about 10 seconds.  Literally stopped dead on the track and wondered what the hell I was doing trying to hack it with this group.  Luckily a new friend came up behind me and yelled at me to get my butt back in gear.  It wasn't pretty but I finished that 1600 and the 800 after too. My long run on Saturday wasn't that great either, although I did log 13.5 miles. I don't know if my heart just wasn't in it or something else was going on.  There are so many factors to consider in running.

I've decided that I definitely need a new pair of running shoes.  I'm starting to have fairly regular pain in my shins and I want that to go away pretty darn quick.  I don't have that high of mileage on my current pair of shoes but I don't feel the arch support or cushioning like I used to.  I really want the Kinvara 2 but I'm not sure they are going to be the right fit. I suppose the only way to find out is to buy them and try. I'm used to going to a running store and trying them out but I just don't have time to week so I might have to cave and just buy them online. Last I checked I think I could score them for around $65 through either Road Runner Sports or Running Warehouse, which is a pretty darn good deal for running shoes. OOPS I just bought them and some Zensah compression calf sleeves for a total of $92.  I call that a total steal.  And they'll be here in 48 hours! Woot!

This week looks as busy as usual.  Track workout, tempo run, a run with a friend, band practice, work, etc. I wish it was Friday already, I'm just not feeling this week at all.  And I have 18 miles ahead of me on Saturday that I'd really like to get over with.  Not in a "I'm dreading it" sort of way, I just want to have it accomplished.

Had a huge coffee this morning and it isn't doing a damn thing yet. Not a good sign, right? How is everyone else's week thus far? Any workouts planned? Are you as excited about my new shoes and compression sleeves as I am?

Friday, August 12, 2011

Random Friday Facts

1. I have no food in the house and I don't get paid until Monday. Harrumph. Hungry.

2. If tomorrow's run goes according to plan, I'll have a 30 mile week for the first time ever!

3. I'm working from home today, which was a battle to get to happen, and now the remote access to my office computer is bitching out. Grr.

4. I'm slowly coming around to Nuun but I think I need a different flavor. Next up, Gu Brew.

5. Despite being really busy, I realize that I don't actually have that many friends. Trying to rectify that.

6. Trying to repress the urge to buy new running shoes and compression socks. Credit card debt is a bitch.

7. The interviewing and hiring process is way too stressful.  I hope it is worth it in the end.

8.  Another interview today, in Herndon.  $2 in wallet, need $4 for the Toll Road. Dammit!

9. Netflix needs to have more recently released items in the Instant Play option.  It is the least they could do for robbing me blind for the service.

10. Watching a subtitled movie is hard when your cat insists on sleeping in front of the tv screen.

11. How can you tell when almond milk goes bad??

12. I wish living in this area didn't mean living off of air for two weeks of every month.

13. Football was on tv last night.  FALL IS COMING!  I can't wait!

14. 78 days until MCM, I can't tell if that is too soon or not.

15. Can't wait to use the house cleaning groupon I have, but nervous about whether they'll actually do a good job. Or just steal my shit.

16. My deodorant has been discontinued.  What is a girl to do?

17. Does anyone buy gels in bulk? Where do you prefer to get them?

18. I actually have plans this weekend that don't involve running or people that run. Yay!

19. Still going to the beach next weekend despite having 18 miles on my schedule.  Can't wait to see how that plays out.

20. I wish someone would take me grocery shopping so I'd have a properly stocked veg kitchen.  My diet really needs the help. Any takers?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Triple Tangent Tuesday

1. I got up at 5 this morning to meet a new friend and CAR for an interval workout.  It went pretty well, but I am dog tired now.  We accidentally messed up one of the intervals we needed to do but it worked out because we were so toasted by the end that we wouldn't have made the full set anyways.  All said and done I got in 4.75 miles between warm up, intervals, recovery, and cool down.  I had another 8:30ish mile similar to the tempo run I'd done the week before and that made me happy.  My 800 splits were meh and the 400s were better but there is definite room for improvement.  I was still able to get to work on time, more or less, so I might do this again next week. At this point I'm open to anything that helps my training.  Looks like my only off day this week might be Friday, but I'm ok with that.  I need to push hard this week and see what happens.

2. Compression socks.  You have them, I want them. I've been itching to try some out for a while now and I'm finally ready to purchase.  I really want to hear from you about the brand you use and why you like it, so I can make an informed decision.  I've been having some shin tenderness lately and I want to nip it in the bud, aside from the general fact that my legs could use a little extra love from all the miles I'm logging.  And...I love any excuse to shop, especially for running related goodies!

3. I honestly don't have a third tangent today.  My brain is stuck on running and shopping for running clothes. I'm in love with some of the things on Lululemon's website but they are so expensive.  Depending on what time I get out of work I might stop at Marshall's/TJ Maxx on the way home and do some scouting.  I checked another location over the weekend but it was a bust.  Any other suggestions for finding deals on running gear?

Monday, August 8, 2011


I tried to come up with a clever Monday title and there was no brain activity, so forgive me. I started out the day in a pretty darn good mood. Still buzzing off my great long run on Saturday. I had a doctor's appointment before work this morning, so I was able to get up at the usual time but squeeze a quick three miles in before I had to leave for the day. Not the best three by a long shot, everything was tight and cranky. I should have known it was an omen. Once I got to work and checked my personal email (obviously the most important task upon arrival to paid employment) the day went right into the crapper. There was a email waiting for me from the leader of my running group telling us that he'd screwed up the running schedule. In short, I'm going away the weekend of the 20th with the BF for some much needed beach time. I was scheduled to do 10 miles so it was no problem. I've done 10 on my own before and we scheduled this trip specifically around the fact that my training schedule only called for 10. UNTIL NOW. Due to my fearless leader's error, I am now slated for 18 miles that Saturday. 18.  WTF.

I broke the bad news to BF and it has not gone over well with either of us.  We want to kick my coach's butt so hard right now. The hotel is already booked (although we still have time to cancel without penalty) and the real kicker is that his family is going to be there the whole weekend as well. The trip was meant for some serious bonding and relaxing. Me backing out now would be more than a mere annoyance to all parties involved. So right now it appears as though my options are running 18 solo in a strange place (how many hotel parking lot laps would THAT take) or cancel on the BF and train with my team. Neither is a desirable option and I need to make a decision ASAP.  What would you do? This has been festering with me all day.  My training has already taken up quite a bit of my time and required a bit of sacrifice on the part of the BF as well, for which I am quite appreciative.  Social life? What is that? Friends? Sounds intriguing.

There is a local running store in the beach area, and I planned on contacting them anyway for info on good places to log miles. Now I'll be asking where to log a lot more miles with the chance that they might know a person or persons that want to keep me company for part of it.  I feel like that is going to be a long shot. I just don't know what to do. There is no solution that will make everyone happy and at the end of the day I still need to run 18 freaking miles.  Crankypants indeed.  I feel like I had this entirely different day ahead of me this morning.  The Universe is tricky like that.  I'd really welcome any advice, I need to think about this and decide by Wednesday at the latest.  Off to crawl under a rock and pout.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Despite walking a bit funny for most of yesterday after my 16 miler, I woke up this morning feeling pretty darn good.  I actually considered going for a short run just to shake my legs out and get a jump start on the week.  The snags in that plan were sleeping way too late (hello, noon) and the weather by the time I was ready to move (really hot and stormy).  I settled for trying to be productive around the house, which is always neglected.  Two loads of laundry, two rounds of dishes, and a sweep through the house to get the worst of the cat hair.  I was feeling a little sweaty just from all the moving around so I decided it was as good a time as any to try out the circuit workout that Vanessa posted last week.  I tired pretty quickly, either because I ate too many stuffed shells 20 minutes beforehand or I'm a bit out of shape.  I did 3 sets, but I'd like to work up to 5. In case you're curious, here is what I did:
20 pushups
20 situps
20 Russian twists w/ a 10 lb weight
20 squats
20 walking lunges
45 second plank
30 jumping jacks
12 burpees
1 minute jog in place

Rinse and repeat :)  Thanks for the workout, V!

Next up I want to try one I got in my email today, from Active.com and designed by Jillian Michaels.  It will probably make my cry, but I've got it coming to me. I see that I've also got a few of her workouts On Demand through my cable, so I'll need to be brave and try those too.  Has anyone else done the cable Jillian workout? Have you tried any other workouts through On Demand that you'd reccommend for non-running days?

Aside from making dinner and starting a writing test for a job interview this week, I think my day is about done.  And I'm typing this with one hand as the other has the smelly glove on it from the hair dye kit. Yup, dying my hair. The plan is not to have it be that noticeable, I'm more interested in covering up the ridficulous amount of grey that I have. Fingers crossed. 

Another storm coming through right now. Despite the temp outside I've got the windows open because the sounds and smells are just too good to miss.  I hope you all had a great weekend. I sure did, especially my great run and sushi dinner last night followed by cupcakes and the final Harry Potter movie. Yes, I cried. 

Tell me about your weekend, I can't wait to hear about it. And in case I haven't said it before, I love my followers and I'm so grateful that you read and comment here! I hope I'm doing a good job returning the favor!  The oven timer just chimed, so it is time to rinse! Caio for now!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Long run

Dear 16 Miles,



Friday, August 5, 2011

Random Friday Facts

1.  I'm in a funk.  And it doesn't look good on me.
2. The weather seems like it might be getting its act together for 16 miles tomorrow. At least one thing will go right.
3. I've been home from FL for 3 days and still haven't unpacked.  Typical.
4. My happy weight and I are going to be reacquainted, come hell or high water.
5. I got an A in my grad class :)
6. I try not to use the same password for every banking, loan, or credit card website that I have.  As a result I constantly mix them up or forget them, causing the account to lock up. Ugh.
7. Doing something I am not good at or have no talent for is incredibly hard and frustrating for me.  Which is why it rarely happens.  And why marathon training is kicking my ass.
8. Race fees are getting out of hand.  Or I'm just really cheap.  It is probably the latter.
9. Just bought a skort and shorts from Athleta for no other reason then they were an additional 20% off. Oops. Never used their gear before, hope it doesn't suck!
10. Thinking of joining CAR for a track workout next Tuesday, and joining a 30 day women-only bootcamp. I just need help stepping it up.
11. I'm going to try it a few more times, but I might be the only person out there who doesn't like Nuun. What should I try next?
12. All these facts seem to be about running in some fashion so to mix it up.....BOOBS.
13. I am a child.
14. I need to buy my lunch today because I haven't gone to a grocery store in ages.  Suggestions? Keep in mind I need something to fuel for a long run tomorrow.
15. I have a great list of blog ideas thanks to you all and I can't seem to actually execute any of them. Sorry!
16. I really want to do a DC blogger meetup, I'd like to meet these fast chicks I keep reading about HINT HINT.
17. Cats will destroy your hallways carpets while you are gone and act like nothing happened.
18.  I'm developing a love for elephants, thanks to a dear friend.  I think they're becoming my spirit/power animal.
19. Is it a bad idea to run a trail 1/2 and not once set foot on a trail beforehand? Well, too late now.
20. I'm finally going to see the new Harry Potter this weekend, if I can stay awake in the theater! Woot!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Yesterday I sat at this:

     And ate things like this: 

      And got spa treatments at a place like this:
     I heart vacation. 

Quick hit

I'm back!  Tanner and fatter!  I did run once while I was there, so that has to count for something.  Back at work right now, trying to catch up on all the emails etc.  Full vaca recap soon!  I missed you all!