Friday, January 13, 2012

In lieu of your regular Friday Facts...

I regret that I must post this terrible news instead. I'm speechless.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1. Car accidents suck. Now that I drive to and from work in some of the worst traffic in the area I had a feeling that an accident would be inevitable. And so it was.  I was headed to the gym after work last night and suddenly BAM, right into the car in front of me hard enough to smash up both cars and have the airbags deploy. It also caused the guy I hit to hit the car in front of him. Not to mention that he ended up hitting his head and going to the hospital. One ticket and an hour in the rain later, I was home in tears. Aside from some neck pain today, I'm physically okay. I called the insurance company from the scene last night and I have an appointment scheduled with a collision center for Saturday morning. All necessary steps but nothing that is making me feel any better about it actually happening. At least now, barring any other disaster, I know what my low moment for the week is.

2. Between car accidents and persuasive park rangers, I haven't gotten in a run since Sunday's 5k. I don't know when I'll get to run again, as it certainly isn't happening today. I don't have a vehicle to get me to the gym and by the time I get out of work it is too dark to run safely. I was just getting back into a groove and looking forward to this basebuilding period. I know that there is plenty of time before my next significant race but I wanted to get back to the track by the end of the month and that doesn't seem possible now. I definitely need to regroup and see what I can do until this mess resolves itself. The silver lining of no car is that I happen to be traveling for the next two weeks due to work and won't need the car to get around.

3. I broke down and created a Facebook page for this blog, so please take a moment to "like" me!  I'm also 1 follower away from hitting 50, so tell your friends! I'm hoping that a combination of Facebook and word of mouth will really boost the number of people that stop by and listen to me ramble. I'd love to hear from current followers about what they do and don't like about my blog, what they'd like to see more of, what they like about their other favorite blogs, etc. I can easily get into a rut doing this and rely a little too much on the themed posts rather than trying to have an original thought. I know more variety will come as I get further into training and racing but I still want to keep things fresh and interesting.

Happy almost Friday everyone! Today WILL be better than yesterday. It just has to be.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

A snapshot of 2011. Off to a slow start this year but I know I'm going to kill it in 2012.

Monday, January 9, 2012

BRATS Frozen 5k

BRRRRR!  I'm still a bit chilly as I write this!  While the weather, in the thirties, was warmer than previous years it was still a brisk start to the BRATS Frozen 5k in Manassas yesterday. With promises of breakfast wafting through her sweet head, my dear friend Jen was willing to be picked up at 6:30 am and driven out to the wilds of VA. I also had the pleasure of meeting up with fellow a fellow Tough Chik, Erica, at packet pickup. I love making new friends with fellow runners and I'm looking forward to meeting more of my team.

We begrudgingly left the comfort of my warm car and did a warm up lap around the parking lot of the race area.There were a lot of kids with race numbers, which I found fun at the time. I like small races in general. For one thing, the race fees are usually lower. Can't go wrong there. It wasn't too long before they called us to the line and after a rendition of the national anthem it was a simple 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and GO. The course was flat with several out and back segments along the way.

It was 34 degrees when we started but it didn't take long to warm up. The first mile was ok, about 8:25 and I wasn't experiencing much pain in my leg. The second mile was a little slower, about 8:31 and I was just not settling into a groove. My legs were tight and my breathing was irregular. I was definitely anxious to see the three mile mark. Remember those kids I thought were fun? Not so much. Apparently in Manassas children are born to run. Seriously. I have never seen such a large and speedy group of kids racing before in my life.

One was being led by his mother who kept yelling out how close he was to beating his PR. He looked about 8. And he passed me.  Before I got to the finish a 9 year old girl came flying in and the announcer made sure to tell everyone who came in right after her that they got owned by her. At any rate, the third mile was my fastest, about 8:15, but not as fast as I'd hoped for. I was just done, I had no kick in me whatsoever. My finish was 25:59. About a minute and twenty seconds slower than the PR I set less than two months before.

Because the race was small, I did get 5th place in my age group, which I'm happy about. Jen smoked us all and came in second female overall in 20:15. She got a cute plaque with a racing snowman on it. We hung out for the awards but as soon as they were done we flew to the car and gunned it back down 66 to breakfast. One giant egg quesadilla and 2 cups of coffee later, I was in better spirits. All in all, I didn't do too badly and my leg held up. I have another 5k in February and I'm looking forward to having a better base to work from.

Did you race this weekend?  How did it go?  I know several bloggers were running at Disney (so jealous) and I can't wait to see those race reports.  Happy Monday, everyone!

Saturday, January 7, 2012


Welcome to this week's edition of high-low. Unlike last week I don't think I'll have any trouble picking out the winners.

High workout: Thursday night's easy 3 miler. It was the shortest run of the week but it was also the run where I felt the lightest on my feet. I was running with a friend who'd taken some time off, so the pace was slower than usual but I didn't mind. It just felt good to be out there, my legs felt loose and I wanted to keep going. I like those kinds of runs, they really make up for the ones where nothing seems to be coming together.

Low workout: Monday's 3 miler. The other shorter run of the week. Nothing was coming together. My calves were like rocks and the slightest roller had me huffing and puffing all the way up. Two days after a 4 mile PR and I can't manage a slow 3? Running is a fickle mistress indeed.

High emotional moment: If you've been paying attention you know that I don't usually speak of my job and good things in the same sentence. Not surprisingly, my job is also the source of the low emotional moment of the week, but good things first. I'd been feeling out of sorts for several weeks now, unsure of my capabilities and whether the company was still enthusiastic to have hired me. I don't thing I've been given sufficient training nor been given chances to prove myself. Among many other things. At any rate, out of the blue, one of the managers IMed me and asked if I was free to go to the San Fran office for a week to help out. San Fran?! For a week?! YES! I know it doesn't seem like much but this is the first offer for travel I've had since I've been with the company and it is a chance to get to know my team better as well as prove that I can be an asset. I'm anxious, but I'm really excited. I need something good to happen at the office, and soon.

Low emotional moment: Oh, work. Within the same span of hours that I was asked to San Fran, I was also in tears on the phone with a managing partner of my group. Long and short of it, I reached out to a co-worker who is also new and we'd been comparing notes about experiences and commiserating and generally exchanging advice on how to keep on keeping on. Apparently he was concerned about me and what he saw as a total lack of support and took it upon himself to "confidentially" talk to someone he knew in the NY office. From there it managed to skip up five levels above where it ever needed to go, reaching the managing partner on a train coming back to DC. One awkward conversation later, we're scheduled to meet for lunch Monday to talk. I'm dreading it and I'm really cross with the co-worker who betrayed my trust. He feels terrible about it, granted. But it gives me a stomach ache just thinking about having this discussion. I need to gather my thoughts between now and then and pray that I can get through it without crying. Unfortunately, that isn't likely. Tres professional.

After a run this morning and a frustrating GRE studying experience, I stepped out into the balmy temperatures and over to the local froyo shop for some sweet relief. A blend of Oreo and Coffee flavors topped with almonds, coconut, and chocolate chips. I have a 5k tomorrow and a girl needs to fuel up, right? Right.....

Friday, January 6, 2012

Random Friday Facts

1. If all goes to plan, I'll have run 4 times this week. Small victory.

2. I caved and made an appt with a chiropractor for some ART.

3. I can't wait until my long runs consist of more than 4 miles.

4. I signed up for a 5k in Manassas on Sunday morning for no good reason at all.

5. Did I mention I have to get up in time to be in MANASSAS? On a Sunday!

6. I've been doing a 7 day detox of sorts and I feel really good.

7. Sleeping until 8:45 when you wanted to be at your desk by 8:30 is a Friday fail.

8. I'm jealous of all the Disney runners and wish them tons of luck this weekend.

9. So far my sister and I have raised $75 for our charity relay. Please donate.

10. I hate peas.

11. Re-learning high school math after 12 years for the GRE is painful.

12. "Because I'm the shit" is not the proper start to a graduate admissions essay.

13. I've done more damage to my car in the past two months than I have since I've owned it.

14. I want to get out of debt but I keep online shopping. I need an intervention.

15. I've resorted to planning out my weekend activities in a spreadsheet.

16. I might get to spend a week in San Fran for work. SQUEEE!

17. My sunburn from FL is already peeling. I look like a leper.

18. Until last night I'd forgotten how much I actually enjoy running in cold weather.

19. I wish I wasn't afraid to run on my local trails alone.

20. I still haven't taken down my Christmas tree. Deal with it.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Three things tuesday

The New Year just marches on, doesn't it? The audacity of time. Today wasn't the best but I was anticipating that so we're good.

1. My legs needed a break from running but my body needed to keep moving so I decided to try that "cross-training" business I keep hearing so much about. He he he. 15 miles on the bike in just over 46 minutes, level 10, random hill program, averaging a little over 19 mph. It wasn't nearly the same sweat factor or calorie burn that I get from running (I know, try harder) but I'll take it. Tomorrow is a rest day solely because I have work and then band practice until the wee hours.

2. My sister and I are running the 1/2 Marathon Relay at the Sun Trust Rock N Roll DC party in March of this year on behalf of a fantastic charity, Back on My Feet.  If you aren't familiar with what they do, please go educate yourself. Once you're educated take a minute to consider supporting us in pursuit of our fundraising goal.  We are only required to reach a total of $350 but I know we can do more than that. HERE is the link to our "fundracing" site, and I'll be posting periodic requests for donations as well as updates on our progress.  I don't know which leg of the delay I'm running but I want our total time to break 2 hours. I think we can do it!

3. To support one of my goals for 2012 I bought a scale online last night. Until it gets here I'll be weighing in at the gym, which I did tonight.  It was......unpleasant and somewhat unexpected. I knew that things weren't right. I knew I had gained. I just wasn't expecting THAT. But, it is what it is. I did this to myself and now I'm dealing with it. I'll weigh in again as soon as the new scale arrives, it is a bit fancier than the gym scale (hopefully more accurate) and can also do body fat and water calculations. Allegedly. I haven't owned a scale in a few years, and with fairly good reason. It definitely ties into the disordered eating patterns that I've had and continue to have, so this new scale will come with rules about its use. I want to stay sane in 2012.

Have you done a charity race before? Do you have any suggestions for fundraising? Can anyone suggest a good bike workout at the gym? If you have or have had a contentious relationship with your scale, how did you get past it?

Monday, January 2, 2012


I'm pretty much stealing Christy's blog post outright today. Sorry and thank you!  This has already been printed out and is taped to my bathroom mirror:

I have a big year ahead of me and I want to do whatever I can to achieve those goals. With that in mind, signing up with Team Tough Chik sounded like a great idea. I'm looking forward to the fun swag, of course, but meeting other team members excites me the most. It means a lot to me to have a sense of belonging in the running community.

I got another short run in this morning, with one of my favorite running partners. Anne had taken 8 weeks off at the end of her season and I'm trying to figure out what is going on with my leg so we were a matched set in terms of motivation and ability. Just three miles, but I'll take it. I'm tired of looking down on my runs and how far I do or do not go in comparison to everyone else. It won't change overnight but I'm going to work on just focusing doing the best I can on any given day.

My legs were definitely tired from running over the weekend. For the shape I am in right now, racing and then running again within the same 24 hours was a bit of a stretch. Tacking on another run today was tough. My calves are really tight and painful, despite foam rolling and stretching before I headed out. I'm trying to decide if I need a rest day tomorrow or not. Maybe hit the bike at the gym and try some of that cross-training business I keep hearing so much about.

I'm hoping that if I am consistent in my workouts for January that I can come back to the track by the end of the month as an official CAR member. Those gazelles intimidate the crap out of me but I won't let that stop me from trying. It doesn't hurt that they are also really cool ladies and great bloggers. I might be a wildebeest in gazelle's clothing but I'm going to give it a shot. That 5k PR over Thanksgiving showed me that I have some ability as a runner and I'm going to swallow all those doubts and fears I have so I can find out what my potential truly is.

On that note, it is time to get moving with the rest of my day. Back to work and reality tomorrow!

Sunday, January 1, 2012


After deciding that I wanted to make this a weekly feature on my blog, I promptly missed the subsequent week. Typical. Here we are, day one of a new week and a new year. With that in mind, here is to being more consistent. Maybe. I guess.

High workout: Last night's Fairfax Four Mile performance. I had zero expectations for the race because I was so unsure about my leg. Turns out that a combination of rest and binge eating was what the doctor ordered because I PRed by over a minute from last year's time.

Low workout:  Tuesday's attempt at a treadmill run. 1.5 painful miles that ended in public crying on a spin bike. Definitely not my finest hour.

High emotional moment: Is it bad if I don't really have one? I mean, the week wasn't a tough one by any means but aside from the artificial highs experienced thanks to the ridiculous amount of delicious food I ate, I can't think of any particularly special moment. Sometimes life is just like that. 

Low emotional moment: If forced to admit it, I'd tell you that I'm not a huge fan of me. And I haven't been for a long time but I'm working on it. Never was this problem more apparent then while I was on my own in Florida for two days. Aside from a trip to an ashram a few years ago I have never traveled alone. I didn't avoid it but I didn't actively pursue it either. Being on this trip reminded me that I barely know who I am, what I like, and what it is like to be with myself. The thoughts and judgments that come up. How sad it is, truly, to not love yourself and enjoy just being you? In fact, I actively avoid too much unscheduled time alone because of the thoughts and feelings that come up. Add this to the list of things I'm working on because I do want it that to change. Truly, I do.

And just so this post doesn't end on a low note, I got in four miles today to start the new year. I was sore from yesterday and some of the pain was back but it doesn't matter because I got out there. I hit the grocery store as well, stocking up for the week to come.  All the junk is gone from my kitchen and I'm looking forward to weighing in tomorrow at the gym so I know how much work I have cut out for me. I just want to fit into my clothes again. I'm excited enough about my racing goals for this year that the challenge of losing weight in the process doesn't seem so daunting. Taking care of my body is only going to make me a better runner and that is all I want.

Happy New Year!