Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I love Wednesdays

I got out of bed on the wrong side of the bed this morning; you know the feeling, just a little crabby - no particular reason at all.........the feeling persisted most of the day but when my work day was done I put on my running shoes and headed out for a 5-1/2 mile run around my office. It was a BEAUTIFUL day in Portland; the sun was shining and the birds were signing! Post-run I immediately headed to Yoga and this was all I needed to get out of my funk. A feel like a new person.

I arrived home to multiple surprises, there was the Progresso Soup package that I had won from Amanda at Run to the Finish; my wonderful weekly box of organic fruits & vegetables and new pendant lights over my kitchen counter.

You have to go check out the awesome giveaway that Tricia is doing; she's giving away a Nathan Hydration belt! This was on my list for Santa this year; a must have item for any runner.

I neglected to mention the other really cool item I got last Friday, a nifty hat from Ron over at Punk Rock Tri Guy. Ron graciously gave EVERYONE that had commented on his blog recently one of the new hats he's having made for PUNK ROCK RACING. You HAVE to go check him out; he is HILARIOUS and he is doing a ton of really cool events this year, including his first IronMan.

It should be noted that I was wearing my new hat when I PR'd on Sunday! It is now my good luck hat.

Happy Hump Day

Monday, January 25, 2010

It's a PR baby; PR!

My half marathon this past Sunday was awesome! I finished in 1:55; which is a 4 minute PR for me - yeah me! It was cold for the entire race; and it pouring and windy for the last 4 miles, a PR in these conditions is even sweeter. While 40 degrees might not seem very cold to some of you you're pretty miserable when you're soaking wet.

We had plans to just go out and stay anywhere between an 8:45 and 9:15 pace; just have a nice run, well you know how plans go. Mind you, I really didn't think that an 8:45 pace for 13.1 miles would fall into the nice and easy category for me but WOW, I can't say it was hard for me.........My friend who wanted to take it easy didn't and she ended up taking off at a low 8:00 pace. Vicki and I didn't think we could sustain this pace for 13.1 so we let the others go at about mile 3 and just got into a groove and enjoyed the day. Just as we were commenting that the rain was staying away, it got very blustery and started to pour; maybe we jinxed it :-) We chatted the entire way and really enjoyed our time together; Vicki is a CPA so her life is just about over until April 15th so we know we won't have a ton of training runs together in the next 2-1/2 months. We kept saying we should slow down, but we never did. I was dead set on finishing in 1:58, which would have been a PR for me and I knew we were ahead of this pace for the entire race. I finished with some kick left and I feel great today; maybe I have a fast half in me......I'll get the opportunity to see on February 28th when I run the Max Muscle Half Marathon the next event on my race calendar.

I didn't get any photos and I am hopeful the race photographer got at least one decent one.

I "get" to repeat Week 4 of the 100 push-up challenge; I wasn't able to do the minimum number of psuh-ups to advance to Week 5. I'm o.k. with this though; in no way do I consider it a failure. I did 28 push-ups; when I started this challenge I couldn't even do 2!

I am moving on to Week 5 for the 200 sit-up challenge. The bummer is, now I am not the same schedule for both challenges; a little thing and I will get over it.

Lesson learned this week, when Lori says nice and easy - don't listen :-)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Busy week, sore arms and sunshine

Wow, this push-up challenge is starting to take its' toll on me, it's getting harder and harder. I just (barely) finished Day 2 of Week 4 - let's just say that the form on the last 4-5 was pretty bad. But I did it! I also did Day 2 Week 4 of the 200 sit-up challenge this evening and got a 3-1/2 mile fairly hilly run in. I guess I deserve to be tired.

The Fitness Challenge at the gym begins February 1 and I am really looking forward to this; with the exception of the push-ups and sit-ups all I have been doing is running and have been very neglectful of everything else.

I'm going to be running in the Vancouver Lake Half Marathon this Sunday; I have done this event twice and while I am not a fan of the course it is a very well organized event and a good PR course as it is nice and flat. As a bonus, I think the weather is supposed to be good this weekend.

Oregon has nothing on California in regards to rain they have been having recently; have you seen the photos? I have family in Southern California and they are all o.k., albeit a little soggy.

The sun has been out at some point the last two days; it is amazing what seeing the sun does for you, least of all it gives you hope that the rain won't last forever.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Weekend update and more

I had a wonderful weekend and in fact, it is still the weekend for me because today is a holiday for me. I'm going to steal this from one of my Facebook friends as I couldn't sum it up better myself:

Dr King's day: serve, learn, make the world more human today.

Yesterday I had the honor and privilege of helping my dear friend Marion celebrate her 30th birthday; she is truly an amazing woman and decided to run 30 miles on her 30th birthday. You can find her story here I intended to run one 10-mile loop with her and then join the group for lunch later, here is the first group at the start.

It was a great day for run and the predicted rain was staying away. Just as we were finishing the first loop I decided I would go out for a total of about 15 miles as I felt so good and it was great to be supporting my friend in this tremendous accomplishment. Here's the group at the beginning of the 2nd loop.

We were running at a pace that is a little slower than my normal pace and it was a little difficult to keep the pace on track and stay with the group, but I felt so incredibly good it really didn't matter. We got the point where I was going to turn around and head back for my 15 miles and I realized that I had mis-calculated the distance, actually if I would have thought about it a little more it would have "clicked" in my brain that I had missed the turn around point. If I turned around here, I would have gone back to the starting point with 18.5 miles, 4.25 of if by myself; I decided just to finish the 2nd loop with my friends and I am so glad I did. The 2nd loop was about one minute per mile slower than the first, but Marion still had 10 miles to go so I just settled in and enjoyed the morning. It was lightly raining by this time, but relatively warm so it was very pleasant.

Here we are finishing the 2nd loop, Marion is in the blue vest.

At this point, I headed home to shower and to meet the group for a late lunch. Marion finished the 30 miles in tears; it was so great to be a part of this. So my 10 mile run turned into a 21 mile run, whoops; I have to tell you though, I have NEVER felt so good after a 21 mile run. The slower pace helped, but this is my longest run since Vegas and I am stoked about how my running is shaping up for this winter.

I won my first giveaway, thanks Amanda and I was also called out by Julie as a blog she likes read. Both of these are so cool; I'm a new blogger and I'm having such a great time.

I began Day 1, Week 4 of the 100 push-up and 200 sit-up challenges today; yippee! This is new territory, as previously I got derailed after week 3; yippee!

I'm off to run errands and head to a friends' house for scrapbooking and cardmaking.

Have an awesome day everyone.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

I'm commited now

I did it, I'm registered and am on my way to becoming a Marathon Maniac......Eugene, May 2; Newport, June 5 and Missoula, July 11.......this will be marathons 17, 18 & 19 respectively - wow.

There's no turning back, but I'm looking forward to the challenge. Training has never been more serious; no slacking off now :-)

Today I completed week 3 of the 100 push-up and 200 sit-up challenges; I'm still feeling pretty darn good, although the push-ups are tough.

Tomorrow morning I'll be hitting the streets for 10 miles and I am really looking forward to it.

The 7-day forecast calls for rain, showers and more rain - welcome to Oregon.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Two posts in one day, I don't know if I can continue at this frenzied pace.....

Have you had a pomegranate lately? There has been so much media buzz surrounding them lately that I thought I would give one a try and I love fruit. My last memories of pomegranates is from a really long time ago; all I can remember is that my mom wouldn't buy them because "they will stain your clothes". Well now that I am a "big girl" and do my own laundry I' decided to take the risk.

Here are the pros:

They are pretty darn yummy
They are full of antioxidants
Some studies suggest they could help with menopause symptoms (yes, I am almost that old)
They are high in fiber
Red is my favorite color

The cons:

They are a pain to open up & get ready for nooshing (kind of like crab legs)
I have little red spots of pomegranate juice all over my desk
I will probably find pomegranate seeds in my office for the next 6 months
I probably did stain my white t-shirt (I hate it when Mom is right)

And yes, I will buy one again and I will figure out a way to conquer the mess aspect!

Here is another cool giveaway that you should check out as it gives back. Katye is really active in the fight against cancer and has pulled together a ton of really neat items that you could win. Check it out, we've all been affected by cancer.

Near perfect day

Yesterday was spectacular......

  • Work went great; I suffered from a severe lack of motivation at work over the holidays, but I'm back in the swing of things now
  • Got in 4 mile run after work (treadmill :-( but it was better than nothing)
  • Went to Yoga for the first time in a while; I love Yoga and will be going every Wednesday
  • Got home and my husband had made dinner
  • Had a nice glass of Pinot Gris
  • Sat in the hot tub
  • Read for a little while
  • Got a great nights' sleep

I am a happy gal this morning!

Go check out this AWESOME giveaway that Teamarcia has going on; she's hit the 100+ mark of followers and she is celebrating!

Have an awesome day.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Another first

Well here goes nothing; my first link to a giveaway!

Please go check out Run to the Finish's Progresso Soup Giveaway

More to follow and have a great day.

P.S. I got out for a great 5 mile run this morning; I was able to work from home today and thus could get out for a morning run. It's rare that I get a morning run in on a weekday; but wow, when I do I LOVE IT.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

My first tag

I had a great 10-mile run this morning, the conditions were perfect; which in Oregon this time of year means DRY.

I'm totally conflicted about what to do for my marathons over the next six months; I have lots of things I want to do and I just can't decide which is more important.

I want to become a MANIAC I can do this by running the following marathons:

Eugene May 2
Newport June 5
Missoula July 11

This is the lowest level of entry into this "elite" group.

But......what is more important; becoming a maniac or qualifying for Boston? I know that I have to qualify for Boston at the first race, Eugene, otherwise the toll of three marathons in three months will take its' toll on me. I have 8:00 minutes to go to make my BQ; I am running faster, but is it fast enough and can I sustain it over 26.2 miles?

I want to run an ultra this year as well; if the lottery gods are good to me I will run the McKenzie River Trail Run the race is in mid-September. Finally, the plan is to run the Philadelphia Marathon in November. This is a lot of racing for one year; 4 marathons and one ultra. It is nice to have decisions like this to make.

asked me to share 10 things that make me happy so here goes:

1. My family

2. Reading

3. My dear Friends

4. Sore muscles after a great workout

5. Running

6. Accomplishing a goal

7. Helping others accomplish a goal

8. Random Acts of Kindness

9. Paying it Forward

10. The beauty of Oregon

I am now tagging:



Wednesday, January 6, 2010

It is Hump Day!

I'm so excited to be participating in TWO 1000+ mile challenges this year. Check out the cool logo created for her challenge.

I have so much going on and I am so excited about the coming year......

I registered for the Missoula Marathon yesterday; it is being held July 11th. Here is my dilemma, I really want to run the Newport (Oregon) Marathon as well, the problem is that it is June 5th (6 weeks in between). I have no doubt I can run both races; as long as I don't race both races :-) I know that I will want to race Newport as I am seeking redemption from my last performance there; while it was not my personal worst, it was close. Newport is close to home and therefore not an expensive outing so it kind of makes sense to just do it.

My husband is from Montana and he is really excited about me running in Missoula; he did both his under grad and grad programs at the University of Montana. The marathon received high marks as the Best Overall Marathon through the Runners World Readers Choice Award. I am a little worried about the weather in Montana, it could be bitter cold or brutally hot; the first year they had this race (a couple of years ago) it was close to 100 degrees. I need to qualify for Boston at one of these races; I have 8 minutes to chew up and I think it is definitely doable on either course.

I think I will also be running the Philadelphia Marathon in November. Based on how quickly Boston filled up for 2010, this event is too late in the season to ensure that if I qualify I can run Boston in 2011.

It is so nice to have options, but I really don't know what to do. In a perfect world, I would like to get a 4-minute PR at each of the two races; I think this makes the goal a little more manageable and accomplishable.


Monday, January 4, 2010

Monday madness; hope & optimism

Happy Monday!

It's back to work and back to a fairly normal routine; it seems like I've been in holiday mode forever.

I'm feeling very encouraged about my relationship with my step-daughter this morning; she is 20 years old and I have been in her life for 11 years, 9-1/2 in the same house. Essentially, her mother abandoned her and her brother; she moved out of their family home and left the kids with their Dad (my current husband). It's been a tough 10 years and we have been 100% there for the kids (emotionally, financially, you name it). She made appearances over the years and spent a little bit of time with the kids (my step-son is now 23). She settled down & got re-married about 5-6 years ago and began fairly normal contact (if you call phone calls & not visits contact) with the kids. I need to add that this wasn't productive, constructive, or proper parental contact; but the kids were at least talking to their mom. Needless to say, the kids think their mom walks on water; every child wants to have a relationship with their mom. I think they see what's been going on and where her priorities are, but they just don't want to accept it or believe it. I have never been treated very well by my step kids (in my opinion); I still do everything I can for them. I drove the carpools, I made their lunches, I went to their events, I had to get their homework done - I'm sure you get the idea. I have been more of a mother to them than their mother has. We have NEVER said a bad word about her to the kids, although we have obviously said a few under our breath :-). Yesterday afternoon as my step daughter was loading her car to drive back to college I gave her a big hug, told her I would miss her and as my husband gave her a hug she said "love you guys". THIS. IS. HUGE. It absolutely made my day to hear those words; we might be turning the corner and I am very optimistic!

I have made progress on my 2010 goals as well:

Goal: Expand my culinary horizons by preparing more new meals for my family

Action: I signed up for a weekly fruit and vegetable delivery; my first delivery will be Wednesday, I am very excited.

Goal: Complete the 100 push-up challenge

Action: Completed Week 1 on January 1, 2010 and started Week 2 yesterday

Goal: Complete the 200 sit-up challenge
Action: Completed Week 1 on January 1, 2010 and started Week 2 yesterday

Goal: See two movies per month; at least one at the Theater

Action: Netflixed and watched "Dan in Real Life"; it was cute, not what I expected based on who recommended it to me (a guy) I enjoyed it. I also got conned into watching "American Pie 2" - wow, I'm a little too old for this type of movie; it did make me laugh though and I needed a mindless activity

Goal: Log 1,500 miles (this is an average of 29 miles per week)

Action: I ran 18 miles in the first three days of January
Action: Signed up to participate in TWO 1000+ mile challenges in 2010

This is not to say I have failed in my other goals (well maybe some of them), but I don't feel I've made significant enough progress to report!

The Rose Bowl didn't have the outcome we hoped for, but everyone who attended had a really great time.

I really need to get back to work now.......Have a great day.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year!

What a great way to start a new year and a new decade; 6 miles with good friends and post-run coffee. We totally lucked out with the weather as well; it was absolutely pouring just before we started. The rain stopped during our run and the sun even came out :-) The rain started again as we enjoyed our coffee and conversation. This is not best of photo of any of us; but that is o.k. I am in the back row, second from the right.

This is an awesome group of running mates; I am so thankful for them.

My running in December was worse than terrible and I really felt like I struggled this morning. I felt like I was fighting hard to run a 10:00 minute pace; I was so surprised to learn that we averaged 8:38 :-) I am thrilled. Especially since I didn't get a great nights sleep last night.

We are hosting an exchange student from Mexico and he had about 10 friends over for the evening. All in all they were very good and they tried to be quiet; I was just hyper vigilant, knowing there were other folks in the house and worried that everything was o.k. Also, my daughters were out for the evening; definitely giving me cause to be concerned.

My husband is out of town, attending the ROSE BOWL - GO DUCKS! so I never quite relax when he is gone.

2010 is going to rock!