Slow and Steady

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sunday Summary: A lot for one post

Not what we have
But what we enjoy,
constitutes our abundance.
Wow, where did the week go. I was pretty sick last week and took Thursday and Friday off from running. The rest was good, but I still have a little bitty sinus cold. My sweet sweet husband and sucker for a good REI deal scored thise red leather Keens at 50% off and score major points with me for the gesture.
I also got two deliveries this week the first was my box of "futures" I order at a Napa Valley wine barrel tasting from last spring. In addition to 3 bottles of Carignan, I also a order a couple bottles of zin and my absolute favorite, a 2004 Nebbiolo that was pressed with barbera skins still in the press and made this mild grape really burst into a truly Noble wine. See Sunce.
 The second was my Valentine's Day gift exchange gift. My secret Valentine was the organizer herself Melissa. She is super fun, energetic and inspiring. Please stop by and visit her BLOG. Thanks Melissa! My purple sparkle laces are freak'n fantastic and I am all about making a new running playlist with my iTunes card. My 3 year old has hijacked the sweets. PERFECT nail color. PERFECT.
Friday? Friday was heavy. I visited my cousin in the hospital again. She is still in ICU, but now she is off all her helping slow the cancer meds and is only on sedative pain management. She was expected to pass last Monday, but there we were Friday and she was still hanging on. There are lots of mixed emotions in what seemingly feels like the waiting game. Enough about that, moving on to less tragic topics.
This Friday was a scheduled wine weekend. A girl friend who works for the same agency as I do was supposed to work an event Saturday in Murphy's. We were supposed to taste and stay over night in the area after the event. The storm prompted the event organizer to push the event to late March. So I suggested we use my in-laws place, take advantage of the free overnight stay and hit the fantastic tiny town of Plymouth in Amador County then head into Lodi Sunday for more wine tasting. We had a fantastic San Francisco style fancy meal in the lovely foothill town of Plymouth. Check it out TASTE. There was a light snow on Saturday. We were trying to catch a picture of it in the snap shot above. Here is a great picture of the pond at my in-laws Land house.

Why I Kick A$$: Um so maybe I don't kick as much A$$ as my wine collection, but I must say I do have Kick A$$ taste wine.

Thankful Three
  1. For finally not being the tallest girl in a photo
  2. For having such lovely friends to spend the weekend with
  3. For a cozy night on the couch watching the Oscar's with my hubby 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tuesday Tidbit: Hit the Trail

Running helps me stay 
on an even keel and 
in an optimistic frame of mind
~Bill Clinton
I am not feeling my best today, but despite the obvious flu symptoms I ran again this morning. Not far but I did run. I also toughed out most of my work day, but had to go home sick this afternoon. I am souping it up and downing lots of liquids. I will get better. I have no desire for my usual sweets and treats, but I couldn't pass on my run. Finally it seems my priorities are straight. Running can't be missed, sweets and treats can be saved for another time. Today, there is not much of a post, so I chose some trail tips from an amazing trail runner. If you haven't hit a trail or don't do it often, you should.
Why I Kick A$$: Of course because I ran at 5:15am
Thankful Three
  1. For a boss who would have let me leave way earlier than I actually left the office
  2. For Tomato soup
  3. Chick flicks in the middle of the day

Saturday, February 19, 2011

People can be divided into three groups: 
those who make things happen, 
those who watch things happen, 
and those who wonder what happened. 
Showing up is 80% of life. 
Hello and welcome to my first non-pity party post in a while. Today I woke up even more stuffy than the previous two days. I felt this sickness coming on, but today I got confirmation. The tense muscles I thought were from Krav Maga, yeah, now I am thinking they are the aches and pains that go with the flu. I was feeling pretty junky this morning, but throwing up in the drive way kinda sealed the deal on the flu question. Did I go back into the house and snuggle in bed? Nope. I felt pretty committed to go to my 8 mile trail run this morning.  I was actually pretty proud of myself for going as I am kinda chicken to do races alone. Other things no problem, not so much. I felt totally yucky when I got there and it was freak'n cold. My feet were completely frozen for two miles, the numb kind of frozen. The good news is I felt like I was moving at a lovely 10:30 comfortable clip and when my watch beeped I was running sub-10. How cool is that? I suddenly felt better. Feeling better, didn't last long. I thought my mile 3 Chocolate Power Gel just wasn't going down with the ice cold water well, but at mile 4 the nausea I was feeling when I woke up had come back. This is not going to be a woe is me post. Actually I would like to tell you what I have learned over the last couple of weeks with my training and my long runs.



While it would have been great to "race" this, it was actually a training run. I am planning a flat half marathon on March 13th and I am terrible at getting my long runs in alone. My strategy? Sign up for races to substitute as long runs. I was truly a lucky girl to find a progressive trail series. A couple weeks ago the distance was 6, this week is was 8 and a couple weeks from now it will go up to 10, then culminate 3 weeks after that with a trail half marathon. If you are wondering, I will also be doing the trail half on March 26th also. I truly feel like the 10k to half marathon distances are my strong suit. They are long enough that I feel accomplished and short enough to be able to train for in a reasonable amount of time. Speaking of training....

In the 8 mile distance I moved at a faster clip my first 5 miles as compared to the 6 mile distance, but then I really lost it on the hills. Does my big slow down mean I went out too fast? I am still trying to understand proper training and pacing. I thought that in the 6 mile race I took the hills on a bit too hard and that it then made me slow down to a walk and that I walked way to long for recovery. Today I decided to run what I could, but to walk more often, but for less time each time. That worked well for mile 4, but by mile 5 I was allowing the mole hills to feel like mountains and walking very manageable hills. Yes I was feeling sick, but at the same time I know this was a mental challenge for me. Also if you look at the comparisons above I lose steam after 3 miles. My guess is that I need a longer distance run mid-week. If I am running 2-4 miles at a time during the week, of course my body is going to feel done after 2-4 miles in a race. I have a longer distance run scheduled for mid-week and every other week it incorporates some speed work, but I just haven't been sticking to that run. The first thing I need to do is step it up and stick to the schedule.  The good thing is is that I can turn it up at the end and I like that doing it at the 6 mile race wasn't a fluke. I really can dig deep to finish strong, yay me! The major reason I was able to do it at the 6 mile race was a Tri Club member basically pulled me. Today it was a complete stranger. I chatted with said stranger and another friend of hers after the race. I remember the other girl from the 6 mile too and presto, I now will have two familiar faces at the 10 mile race. Runners are a pretty cool crowd.

The other thing that I need to work on is stretching. Early this week I felt some funkiness in the left knee and after the 8 miles I felt some tightness deep in my left tush. I do not want to injure myself. I.NEED.TO.STRETCH.REGULARLY. The third thing I need to do is focus more on my hydration. I was really dehydrated a week or so ago, then this sickness started coming on. I felt like I was drowning myself in water. Now I know I should be taking water more frequently in smaller quantities throughout the day vs. downing a water bottle at work and then another on the drive home. Taking care of myself is important and I need to make it more of a priority.

I need help. How do I learn to be stronger in the middle of the race with no one around to pull me? I will tell you I have considered music, but I just don't feel right listening to music on a trail run. The other thing is today it was supposed to rain, it was gorgeous, but had it rained wouldn't my iPhone/iPOD get soaked?
Why I Kick A$$: Because I show up rain or shine, flu or no flu.
Thankful Three
  1. For Muddy Trail Runs
  2. For Saltine Crackers
  3. For My Couch

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Friday Five: Insecurity

 I act like sh*t don't phase me, 
inside it drives me crazy, 
my insecurities could eat me alive.
  1. Ok, so I don't act like sh*t don't phase me. I totally lack a poker face. There are some insecurities that could eat me alive. Mostly, I am insecure about my performance (get your mind out of the gutter, there are no problems with that performance). I kinda feel the need to be the best at everything. Lately I am focusing on the fact that ~I DO NOT HAVE TO APOLOGIZE FOR BEING AWESOME and someone's success is it's own thing, not a missed opportunity of me to have had the lime light.
  2. I have a tendency to make others great at what they do by sharing knowledge, equipping them with tools to succeed and doing so without BROADCASTING why I deserve credit for their success. It is kinda how I roll. I think I get this from my basketball coaching days and college years when I thought I was going to become a teacher. Unfortunately, I then get talkers/helpers remorse thinking I wasn't looking out for #1 enough, hello insecurity. My husband works in private sector and #1 is all that matters in that arena (mostly). Well I work in public sector and if there isn't team cohesiveness no one is successful. We must help each other so that we are all performing at high levels. GO TEAM!
  3. I wish I pushed myself at sports as hard as I pushed myself in my career. Sometimes I feel like I am afraid to succeed. What would happen if I tried my hardest at every work out? This year is my year for speed and consistency. I am already doing better in both categories this year and I totally carry myself well if I miss a work out like hot sh*t because maybe I ran 1x that particular week. When really my insecurity is that people are going to see right through my wishy washy workouts and see I am not the athlete I wish I was.
  4. Today (hormone alert), my husband came home. I was on the couch, drinking a glass of wine and enjoying a chocolate or two while reading Oprah Magazine and watching Biggest Loser on DVR. On the face of it I was living the relaxing dream. Then my husband got home with kids and I suggested he get a drink and sit on the couch for a while. He declined as there was "too much to do." He couldn't be idle when dinner still had to be made and dishes needed to be done. He said he'd do it and I could stay where I was, but that he just wasn't comfortable. Do you feel the insecurity coming? It is CRAZY HARD to be married to Super Hubby. He does everything at least 10x better than I do and so I constantly have the whole insecure in my wifey duties thing going. On the flip side I do my best to make it seem like it doesn't phase me that it is part of our partnership, but yeah check #1, I.DO.NOT.HAVE.A.POKER.FACE. it kills me that I feel like a slacker wife. I am just not ambitious when it comes to wifey stuff.
  5. I am using the act like it doesn't phase me strategy to over come some insecurity. Like positive self talk, I think that if I tell myself that things are great, I am great, I look great and I am great at everything that I do, then even though I feel like I am lame, look fat and am not perfect at everything I do, that if I tell myself I am great and project a positive attitude about my self esteem that magically I will wake up and actually have the self esteem thing locked in. Yes I know a does of reality will have to creep in and I will have to acknowledge sometimes putting on a show is not the best way to deal with things. I just think that a healthy does of armor to shield insecurities is a great way to overcome unnecessary insecurity.
Why I Kick A$$: This morning I did not let the rain at 6AM deter me from my run.
Thankful Three
  1. Kind bloggers and their kind words
  2. For flipping that frown upside down and letting my insecurities motivate me to be extra awesome just so I can convince myself I am as awesome as others see me.
  3. For bananas, Oreos and hot chocolate for breakfast

Thoughtful Thursday: Where do I start?

The ability to simplify means 
to eliminate the unnecessary 
so that the necessary may speak.   
~Hans Hofmann, Introduction to the Bootstrap, 1993 

I finished last week with such energy and this week I am having difficulty see which way is up. Work has been awkward, not really productive, but not really bad either. Just blah, which is weird, because I have been feeling like super rock star lately. On the workout front I had high hopes for a long run this weekend, but Friday and Saturday were really full and Sunday slipped through my grasp. We all must have been exhausted because my kids and I took about a 2 1/2 hour nap on Sunday. My saving grace has been my Monday & Wednesday Krav Maga sessions and my Tuesday run after work. Tomorrow I have a date at 6am to run with a Tri Club buddy, so hopefully the rain stays away for us. One of the biggest differences workout wise is that I ran 3 mornings last week and I think it set the tone each day. Then I took 4 days off from running and ta-da, say hello to the funk. I am trying to pull myself out of it, but it's tough. Chocolate, bread, goldfish crackers, ice cream, cookies and candy, but still no luck. The workouts have helped, but no amazing dose of endorphins has come of the efforts so far. I am looking forward to my run tomorrow, a great 8 mile trail run Saturday and fun day at the snow Sunday. Thank you Mr. President's I do so appreciate the day off on Monday in your honours.

The true sources of my funk: I am feeling suffocated by stuff. I need to declutter. I bought the current issue of O Magazine because the cover has a big ad for an article on "De-Clutter Your Life!" Have I read it yet? Nope. So keep too many documents and never get around to shredding. I have too much "stuff", too many clothes and lord knows what else. I went through my workout clothes and only got rid of 2 event non-Tech T-shirts. 

How much workout gear do you have? 
I have 5 capri's, 4 running skirts, 4 pairs of shorts, 4 pairs of tights, way too many tech-tees, 5 long sleeves, a few warm outer layers, too many socks and a perfect amount of hair things like head bands.

I volunteer way too much. It is not alot actually, but is a lot when I work full time, make time for my family, make time for me and then try to: sit on the board at my synagogue, raise money to rebuild our religious school, schedule and execute a baking workshop that generates hundreds of dollars, re-write drafts of official correspondance as an alumni of my college sorority and other miscellaneous things that come up in life. I need to de-clutter my obligations.
'Tis very certain the desire of life prolongs it.  
~Lord Byron
Finally, my cousin is dying. She is 18 and I used to say she had cancer, today I caught myself telling someone she is dying. I can't really understand it when the words come out of my mouth. I think about the time not spent with her or her family, events I have missed and even during the last 20 months of battling cancer, all the times I should have been there for her and her family. At first they gave her a couple months, then just a couple weeks. Her family has repeatedly been referred to Hospice, but they continue to battle like they are now. She's has numerous hospital stays and the current fear is that this is her last. She has a fatty tissue sarcoma with a 10 percent survival rate. She has lived 20 longer than doctors expected. The cancer in her leg grew and with chemo and radiation shrunk. She had surgery to remove it and it was supposed to take about 6 hours. It took 12. Her left leg became necrotic, they wanted to amputate. She said now and within a couple weeks regained a pulse and her leg began to heal. The stupid cancer spread to her lungs. She is a smart girl. Lucid. Physically her body is responding well and her weight is up despite being sick from so much medication and the stupid cancer has taken over her lungs and they don't work. She has been in ICU for 17 days and a ventilator breathes for her. She can communicate just fine despite the tube in her throat. How does she just have to die? I wish I had spent more time with her. Part of me thinks I was selfish, part of me thinks life gets in the way, part of me realizes she is 18 and I am 31 with a family of my own and just didn't budge time. I don't know. I just see the way my aunt and uncle look at her. I see in their eyes pain, confusion, their everlasting view of this 18 year girl as their baby. It makes me miss my family even more when I am not with them and fear every little thing that might go on in our life path. As you may surmise from my blog posts I am not excellent at coping. I either go overboard with a workout or more often go overboard with eating. I am also a crier. Sometimes I just need to let it out and for days like that I have the movie The Notebook. 

Yes I know this is not the strong Ra-Ra-Ra I am the strongest worker-outer, runner, triathlete, rockstar employee post, but it is still me. It's the raw, you see what you get, I am a total wimp sometimes and have ~gasp~flaws that are not weight, running, swimming, biking or work related. Don't tell anyone.

Why I Kick A$$: Because I am so blessed for the gifts G-d has given me with my family and I am smart enough to see it.
Thankful Three
  1. For snuggling with my sniffly children at midnight
  2. For being able to unload honestly on this blog and not have to apologize for it  
  3. For visiting hours

Monday, February 14, 2011

Monday Motivation: My cupcake

Stressed spelled backwards is desserts.  
Coincidence?  I think not!  
~Author Unknown

I don't even know where to start to recap my weekend so I am just going to keep it short and come back when I've got a little more. In the mean time, this is my Bug after a bite of lemon cupcake with lemon frosting...we were a little chocolated out this weekend.
Why I Kick A$$: Because I make time for my friends and they make time for me. Thanks D&L for a fantastic night hanging out and letting the kids get so tired Saturday night that I got to sleep in Sunday morning.

Thankful Three
  1. Lady Antebellum-American honey
  2. Eminem-Love the way you lie
  3. Couch potato, junk food night while watching the Grammy's on DVR

Friday, February 11, 2011

Friday Five: Valentine's Day Weekend Begins

Love is the greatest refreshment in life.  
~Pablo Picasso

1. Super Hubby and Duder have special father-son treat time every Friday. Sometimes it's ice cream, some times donuts. Today it was donuts and they came home with this for me from Krispy Kreme:

2. I pre-ordered these to start off our family Valentine's Day weekend. They are chocolate dipped Banana's, Strawberries and Green Apples.

3. To cap off our healthy selection for the day, we decided to picnic in the living room and watch Toy Story 2. It was Nacho night at our place!

4. This on just makes me smile. Swim caps in the bath tub. He is not giving attitude, just trying really hard to make a fish face.

5. I am mildly dehydrated and have been so for a couple days now. I felt it come on Wednesday night and it just hasn't gone away since. I just don't drink enough during the day and the couple Pabst Blue Ribbons I had yesterday and the one I had tonight haven't helped. Super Hubby has corrected me to say that all the cool kids just call it PBR. It was the happy hour special at a Chicago Style Pizza place I had dinner at last night and for fun, my hubby bought me some for home. Nuun is my new BFF.  

Why I Kick A$$: Because I have completely rocked my workout week! I ran Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. I swam Monday. I did yoga Monday. I did Krav Maga Monday and Wednesday and it is not even the weekend yet. You'd better believe there are more miles planned for my weekend.

Thankful Three
  1. For Valentine's Day Bloggy Gift Exchanges. My gift is in the mail and I am so excited for my secret Valentine to get it. She is going to get to rock a super cute Prana yoga tank and I got her a purple yoga stretching strap since she is getting back into yoga.
  2. For Overtime Saturday. Not only am I employed, I get the opportunity to put in extra hours and get paid for it.  
  3. For DVR. I need about an hour or two and I can fast forward through the commercials and watch Top Chef, Vampire Diaries, Biggest Loser and Gossip Girl. I love the couch and I love indulgent TV. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Thoughtful Thursday: Lessons from the 53 runners commandments

A couple days ago Molly put up a great post with the 53 Runners Commandments, you can read it HERE. I am writing this a day early because Thursday is going to be a pretty packed day. I skipped my run this morning. I had a partner for a 6:15 am run, but he bailed at the last minute. I was in my running clothes, just needed to lace up. I dug deep for motivation to go, even pulling out one of my favorite Brave Heart movie quotes: "I didn't get all dressed up for nothing!"...then proceeded to crawl back into bed. Part of the reason was shear desire for my snuggly bed, the other part was a little PTSD left over from my post HERE. I could've taken the dog, but running in the dark in the wee hours of the morning alone still makes me feel uneasy. Self defense classes are helping with my confidence in this area, but I obviously have a long way to go. My saving grace for today's missed run was the fact that it was a Krav Maga night. To make up for today's missed run, I get to run with my same partner who overslept this morning on Thursday at 5:15AM. Yippy! Yeah, uh...what was I thinking? I am glad I am committed to it now, but man I am going to hate it when my alarm goes off.

Ok on with the main part of this post. I had never read the 53 commandments before Molly's blog post. I found the commandments below resonated with me on a variety of levels not related to running. As a former athlete and now as a leader, I can appreciate lessons learned that have cross over value.

2. Walking out the door is often the toughest part of a run.
At home I some times don't feel like doing work, at work there are assignments I don't feel up to, but sometimes just starting, taking that first step is the hardest part. Once I am done, I look back and think, "Why did I put that project off, it was so easy and now I feel awesome for being done."
5. Keep promises, especially ones made to yourself.
It is tough to follow through. It takes commitment, resolve and dedication. I do my best to follow through with family promises and obligations. I try to nail every deadline at work. When I tell myself I am going to do something for me, it is easily pushed to the side to accommodate other tasks. I need to remember that I am the most important person to myself . I cannot do for others if I am not doing for myself.
9. Don’t compare yourself to other runners.
When I was an undergraduate I was given this quote, "It doesn't matter what others think of me, only what I think of myself" took a while, but I got it. Taking that to the next level, what I think of me shouldn't be based on what I think of others. People are people. They have strengths and weaknesses like I do, they have their own variety of experiences. I cannot control those things, I can control me. My strengths. My weaknesses. My experiences. I am only as good as I push myself to be. I don't have to diminish myself because someone else is accomplished, nor do I need to diminish others to feel accomplished. 
27. Be modest after a race, especially if you have reason to brag.
I love the phrase, "Act like you've been there." If you are awesome, people are going to notice. Not that you shouldn't toot your own horn every now like on resumes and in interviews etc, that is fine. I can't stand that some people toot their own horn ALL.THE.TIME. They usually end up being not as cool as they say they are. I wonder what their motive is. If you are going to toot your own horn, think about why you are doing it. I have a mentor who told me once that my agency is a "meritocracy," show your merits consistently and you will rarely be overlooked. Throwing accomplishments in peoples face just shows a lack of maturity in my opinion, and a deep level of insecurity and one's need for validation. BLOGS are an exception, I reserve the right to tell you all the fancy reasons I kick A$$ whenever I want, you can choose not to read if it annoys you.
31. Look at hills as opportunities to pass people.
Oh the struggles in life. Becoming independent. Stresses of marriage, kids, in-laws, jobs, taxes (LOL) just life. Life throws some crazy things at people and the ability to surmount those challenges represents that opportunity to "pass people." At work in particular, taking on a challenging assignment provides an opportunity to show why you are the best candidate for awards, promotions, accolades and other recognition of your strengths. I love that it is not really the ability to pass people, but the ability the conquer something that maybe is more challenging for someone else.
45. “Winning” means different things to different people.
It is no secret I have struggled with some decisions about promotions at work. I have a young family and have decided that opportunities that would result in a increased commute or pay cuts even though it's a position promotion outside of my locality pay, are not the "winning" choice for my family. Having graduated from a prestigious fellowship program comes with an unwritten expectation that I advance at work at an accelerated rate. A quick advancement=winning, but not for me. My family and I have made difficult decisions that have all been the right decisions for us. The thing about winning is it doesn't matter what other peoples projected standards are, as long as you feel for yourself that you are winning. If that means finishing, perfect, you win.
50. Never apologize for doing the best you can.
This comes up alot. Without sounding too cocky, I am good and lots of things. My husband is good at everything and never apologizes for it. For a long time, this attitude was a sexy turn on. It then turned into annoyance at his cockiness, now I get that my husband is confident in his abilities and isn't afraid to be the best at everything he does. I on the other hand have struggled with this. I have played down my abilities so I wouldn't make others feel bad and I have not tried my hardest so that I didn't look like too much of an eager beaver. At a recent after work function, a high ranking employee was playing the Wii Michael Jackson Dance game. I joked with her by saying, "Wow, you don't do anything half a$$ do you?" because she was nailing all the moves on the hardest setting. Her response, "I was just doing my best." WOW, I mean really? Someone is her position obviously does her best at work, but to see her apply that work ethic to a Wii game? Yeah, I learned a lot that night. I just need to learn to strike a balance with being AWESOME and not looking like I am throwing it in anyone's face.
Why I Kick A$$: Because 6 weeks ago I struggled just to do 10 push ups and now I can fight my way through 25 at a time.
Thankful Three
  1. For morning running partners
  2. For week night dinner dates with friends
  3. For the opportunity to write letters of recommendation 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tuesday Tibit: Perfection

 The most difficult part of attaining perfection 
is finding something to do for an encore.   
~Author Unknown

I was too tired to post yesterday so today's tidbit is a little longer than a tidbit. Sorry for the false advertising, I just like this title for Tuesdays. The word of the weekend was "indulgence," but I have opted for a quote about perfection, because that is what was achieved this past weekend. I need to find a way to be independently wealthy so that this extravagant, indulgent, PERFECT weekend+Monday can happen way more often.

Picked up R and headed to Folsom State Park (Granite Bay Beach). We stopped at a Starbucks to pick up S our third musketeer and to avoid her having to pay the $10 parking fee. On the 1 hour plus drive to the race I tried to eat a Luna Protein bar. I usually like them, but this particular morning I was not up for fake food. There was a Noah's Bagels next to Starbucks so I got a Good Grains bagel, toasted with peanut spread thickly between the slices. I only hate half, but it was heavenly. I haven't been lov'n cream cheese lately so now peanut butter is officially my new thing. Pre-race I ran into a Delta Tri Club member in his 60's. We chatted and wished each other a good run. The course started over some easy sand, a little fire road and then onto the single track trail. The elevation gained/lost was only 341 feet, but I would guess there was never more that 25 yards of flats except the last 1/2 mile of the run which was pretty flat. It was always up or down hill except for mile 4 where there was a good 150 yards of sand. I live in the VALLEY, save for an overpass here and there, there are NO HILLS. Part of being successful on the first 3 miles was mentally staying focused and the occasional chit chat and joking with a person who recognized my club shirt and that fact that there are no hills where I am from. I finished the first 3 miles in 32:19 and was hopeful for a fast finish. (Fast for me)

Then came mile 4, the steepest of all the climbs, sand and plain old fatigue (physically and mentally). I haven't really trained for this, this run was a training run for my flat 1/2 marathon in March. Then from behind in mile 5 came my 60+ year old team mate. Trotting easily along. I tried my best to stay up with him, but he still finished ahead of me. What I did do was manage to stay up with him and cut my mile times in mile 4 and 5 from 11:51 and 12:15 respectively to 10:09 in mile 6. It was there, I just had to dig and the 10:10 was on pretty flat terrain and included a good amount of walking. Who knew I could run 10:10 in mile 6 and do it with some stretches of walking. After the run my DTC buddy and I were chatting and it turns out he has an extra pass for the pool at the University 1 mile from my home. Guess who the new lucky winner of that fancy pass is? You guessed it, ME! and I have a swim date at 11:00 am Monday.
By the Mile: 1. 10:26   2. 10:38   3. 11:15   4. 11:51   5: 12:15   6. 10:09   Finish time was 1:06:38

Afterward I took my fancy shamancy $5 off coupon to fleet feet and final got the compression socks I have been wanting. They were expensive and I know there are cheaper ones out there, but I really wanted them and thus began my weekend of indulgences.
After a shower at the in-laws cabin in the hills we went to a spa and got manicures, pedicures and massages. The color I chose is called something like rain lily, but I am pretty sure cute nike shoe pink is more appropriate.

Then we went to TASTE restaurant for dinner. Please check them out, make a reservation and enjoy an amazing dinner in a quiet town...then go wine tasting like we did.

We all had a relaxed start. We had plain oatmeal and bananas on the menu, but when R started eating Girl Scout Cookie Thin Mint ice cream before 8:00 am we knew it was all down hill from there. We had 2 pounds of See's chocolate and decided a few pieces for breakfast wasn't a bad idea. That then morphed into me crumbling the chocolate covered almonds into my oatmeal with bananas. DELICIOUS!

The afternoon was all about having lunch on a hillside overlooking vineyards on a perfectly sunny day and wine tasting. I highly recommend the Primativo and Tannat at Sobon Estates and Paul's Vineyard ReZerve Zin and Babera at Shenandoah Vineyards. Both places are owned by Sobon and Paul is the wine maker for both. I believe they are all 2008 except for the Tannat which is a 2009.

Today I had the day off for no reason, just time. So after I dropped off the little ones at day care I thought to myself, "Self: you should do something today." By something I was thinking Bikram Yoga, but then I realized I would have to pay $15 for drop in, would probably not go again and DUH I have a gym membership. So I pulled up the GroupX class schedule and saw that there was a 9:15 am class. It was 8:30 so I stopped at Panera for a Trailmix Bagel toasted with peanut butter and was on my way. I need to start carrying my yoga mat in the car again, I had to use one of the short foamy mats at the gym, not ideal. Class was over at 10:15 and my swim date wasn't until 11 so I jumped on the treadmill for 2 miles with a incline interval run. FANTASTIC. I met my DTC buddy at the University Pool and swam 1750 meters. It took me 51 minutes, but there were breaks to talk, kicks, strokes and resting so I am happy with the workout. Even better, it is an outdoor pool so I got my first tan marks. Yup sun enough for tanning in February. I love California. I even wore a sundress the rest of the day just to celebrate the 65 degrees that felt like 80 degrees. Had sushi with the hubby for lunch, made a fantastic dinner, then got all bruised up at Krav Maga. I tried to post this on Monday at 9:30PM, but I couldn't keep my eyes open so I hit the hay and thus you get the Longest Ever Tuesday Tidbit.

Why I Kick A$$: Because I looked super hot in my new skirt today at work. There is nothing like looking as good as you feel.

Thankful Three:
  1. Fried Chicken and waffles for dinner
  2. A running partner at 6:15 AM despite crazy wind worthy of wind advisories
  3. For chocolate cupcakes with my munchkins

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sunday Summary: Ready for the Weekend

Oh the nerves, the nerves; the mysteries of this machine called man!  
Oh the little that unhinges it, poor creatures that we are!  
~Charles Dickens

Much of this was for my Friday post that because of technical difficulties, did not get posted. Friday started fantastically and  ended with me in bed at 11:15 PM having a little anxiety. The play-by-play.
1. I had the day off. I kinda slept in after having a couple beers with friends Thursday night. I am such a lush. Seriously, 2 pints and I didn't even finish the second. It didn't hit me until after dinner either as a swooshed away on the commuter train. Back to Friday....Super Hubby left for the big Lake Tahoe boys Super Bowl trip. It always gives me anxiety when he leaves.
2. I love Target. I love Valentine's Day. I love pay day. this what happens when I shop for valentines things at Target on pay day:

3. Here are a few necessities I picked on for the weekend trip, which I'll blog about in detail tomorrow.

4. Before Super Hubby left on Friday we got to have a little lunch date, we LOVE sushi Fridays.

5. Friday's are usually reserved for Father-Son treats after school before they pick up the Bug from the sitter. I had to fill in, I think I did pretty well.
After ice cream we thought it might be a good idea to go with our Babysitter and her daughter to Chuckie Cheese. BAD.IDEA. OMG. I hate it there. Or at least hate it with two little ones I am trying to keep track in the midst of kids running around chaotically without parental supervision. Part of the reason I was so anxious Friday night was that I was on sensory overload from Chuckie Cheese and still tense watching my little ones making sure no "strangers would steal them." How were all these other parents not concerned about this? They stamp parents and kids at the door with a unique code that can only be seen under black light so that no one can leave with your kids. While most people were feeling safe and not watching their kids, I couldn't help focusing on the fact that they have this policy for a reason.

Why I Kick A$$: Because I care enough about myself to take both Friday and Monday off even though they were/are not officially part of the fantastic girls weekend you'll get to hear about tomorrow.

Thankful Three:
  1. Babysitters-Mom, niece and in-laws made girls weekend happen
  2. For Sales. Scored a pretty pencil skirt and sweater dress at 60% off each. After tax $30 total.
  3. For heart shaped strawberry marshmallows

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Who, being loved, is poor? 
~Oscar Wilde

Wednesday HUMP day sounds funny, but like an out and back run it marks the turn around to the work week. This week is extra special because I have Friday off so Wednesday is kinda like Thursday, right? Ok Oscar Wilde, I get it. I am loved, what more do I need? Well, in this day and age of luxury, presents are nice too! Super Hubby and I don't do big gifts, but it is nice to be made to feel special on Valentines Day. Melissa over at Melissa's Adventure in Living Life paired up a few of us interested bloggers for a Valentine's Day Gift Exchange. I am super excited. I just got my partner's name emailed to me on Sunday and have been reading through some of her archived blog posts to get some gift ideas. It is so funny how much one can find in common with another person just by virtue of having a blogger in common. I am excited to shop for my gift. Part of the exchange is to post answers to the following questions so here goes:

1.  Handmade gifts?  Love or hate? LOVE
2.  Gift cards?  Love or tacky? LOVE
3.  What type of theater do you frequent (like Cinemark, etc)? Regal Cinemas
4.  Coffee?  addict, like, can't stand?  Starbucks, home, other? Like. Home we use Keurig. Out we do Starbucks.
5.  Do you read?  Books you've been wanting to read?  Type of books you like? Love to read! I like best seller list stuff like: Little Bee, Water for Elephants, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and The Help, but indulge in teen books like Twilight, The Hunger Games and The Maze Runner (all series). I have been wanting to read Freakonomics.
6.  3 Favorite running accessories Garmin, Gloves and some sort of head band, hat or other sweat catching/hair taming accessory.
7.  Kids?  Ages? Two kids, 3 and 1.
8.  Pets? Two dogs, a cat and a box turtle
9.  3 things you can't leave home without Glasses, iPhone and rubber band for my hair
10.  3 Favorite magazines.  Current subscription? Runner's World (subscribe), Oprah (do not subscribe, but should), Self (do not subscribe)
11.  When you are in a running slump, what motivates you? Races and new running gear
12.  Complete the sentence, "My favorite thing about running/exercise is the sense of accomplishment"
13.  Shoe size/t shirt size 10 1/2 shoe, Large shirt
14.  3 Favorite Valentine's candies See's Nuts & Chews, the cherry gummy heart things and Chocolate covered fruit (strawberries, cherries etc.)

Why I Kick A$$: Because tomorrow night I get to have a few beers with some very smart people. All of them have at one point been Fellows in the prestigious Presidential Management Fellows Program. Do I kick ass because I get to have beers with smart people? No. I kick ass because I.AM. one of those smart people.
Thankful Three:
  1. For PMF's who keep in touch
  2. For Valentine's Day Bloggy Gift Exchanges
  3. For great reads