Thursday, July 29, 2010

Speedy Gonzales

Wednesdays on the schedule are not only a moderately 'long' run, but they also incorporate some sort of speed work.  Let me tell you, this girl doesn't like marathon speed work because what that means is that you are looking at mile repeats, threshold pace or tempo runs.  Sigh.  At least with speed work in the Spring you are doing repeats of MUCH shorter distances...manageable distances, not to mention the fact its not 90-100 degrees outside.

So the schedule yesterday called for 8 miles with 3x1.5 miles at 8:45/8:51 with a 4mr in between.  This actually aggravated me more than anything because well a) its 90-100 deg outside AND you want me to run additional mileage as well?  Good God who ARE you?  I call you CrazyCoach.  :o)

So I thought ok, how can I alter this to make it 'manageable' for someone like me?  I mapped out a 7 mile route, with the last 2 miles being as straight of a shot as possible and on pavement as much as possible (since the route was Rice/Hermann).

Well halfway around Hermann after I stopped for water at what turned out to be a BROKEN water fountain, a couple of Roadrunners passed me and I fell in behind...before I realized what had happened I had turned on the path instead of going straight up Cambridge.  This now meant that my route was going to be 8 miles.  

So after 6 miles (10:18 avg pace) which ended up being thankfully just past a water fountain around Rice, I took a short break to rinse off and 'adjust' before starting the 7th I went.

I have to mention that I was advised to set my Garmin to read lap pace instead of actual pace, which helped A LOT.  I was able to see what my mile was going to come in at based on my speed at any given moment.  I pushed until I at least got it just past a 9 min mile as I was going to be ok with that. 

Mile 7:  9:06

This put me basically at the corner of Shepherd and Bissonett where I walked it out for the 4 min in the corner store parking lot.  The sweat was just POURING out of me...I knew that if I could just come in at that pace or slightly over/under I would be happy.  I didnt ever think for one moment I was going to get close to what I was supposed to run them at.  Once I hit Hazard heading ever so close to home, I looked at my watch and it was reading 9:00 and I thought OK, you just need to step it up a bit and make this mile come in at under 9:00 no matter what it takes...

Mile 8:  8:58

I still can't even quite believe I pulled this off as well as I did.  Yes I was in a bit of pain later on...and still a bit of it this morning...stiff...but I'm alright  :O)

Not sure how tonights run is going to go though...

p.s.  Heat index yesterday at time of run was 93deg.  A cold front!!  ha!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

No GoGo the Day after GaGa...

Boy howdy!  Let's see...on Monday up at 5am, work all day in 4in heels.  Rush home to get ready for concert, switch out 4in heels for 5in heels.  6 more hours in those.  Some standing, some sitting, some jumping up and down and some just all out dancing.  The shoes to the right are the ones I wore to the GaGa concert.  Cute huh?

In bed around 12:30am-ish.  Sleep till 6:30.  Back to work and yes...back in 4 in heels.  What can I say?  I love my heels!

Add to that mix on Monday night, briefly noshed on appetizer, 2 dirty martini's, 1 beer and 1 glass of water.  This made for a very hungry girl yesterday (wanted to binge but held it together), and slightly dehydrated.  Thankfully I wasn't hungover in the true sense of the word.

All of this only made me want to go home straight from work and lay on the couch. 

The schedule said 6 miles, and I thought...ok just go to the gym, run what you can comfortably and make up for it with some weights.  So thats what I did.  I ran 45 min on the treadmill and then did about 30 min of weights.  I felt better for having gone and thought I deserved a pat on the back seeing as how I actually managed that crazy of a Monday (20 hour long day basically) and still managed to get some sort of a workout in! 

Feeling much better today and its a good thing too.  I have a 7 mile route mapped out for tonight and I. HAVE. TO. GO. THE. DISTANCE.   I need to quit dilly dallying around on my Wednesday runs (whch is to be a moderate distance and some 'faster than MGP' miles in there).  If it wasn't so darn hot/humid for this training it wouldn't be a frackalacka problem! 

We'll see how it least today we are still reaping the 'benefits' of all the rain...'cooler' temps...look what's comin' though...

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Couple of pre-Gaga photos (more later)

I made these glasses...just me, a glue gun, some beads and a few rhinestones...

Or maybe these glasses would be better?

I bought this 'vintage' prom dress at a resale shop for $10.  Lace overlay.  Its a short dress you just cant see the hemline due to the bathroom sink!

Will upload photos from my camera later this evening!

The show was AH-MAZE-ING...there are no words, but I'll try ... later ...

Monday, July 26, 2010

Lottery? We Don't Need No Stinkin' Lottery!

Unofficially I received an email on Saturday that told me I had qualified for a HARRA guaranteed spot for entry into the 2011 Houston Marathon if I so chose and bypassing the lottery which opens tomorrow.  (Those races, dues and volunteering paid off for the past 4 years...)

Today I received the OFFICIAL email that I had guaranteed entry.  Good times, good times.

Chicago Marathon - October 10, 2010
Dallas White Rock Half Marathon - December 5, 2010
Houston Marathon - January 30, 2011

Good times, good times...
Sunday: ran at 9am...not so smart...but in 4 miles and then off to work at Luke's again.

6 more days till I have a day off!!! Don't feel too sorry for me, the extra days/hours are self-induced to pad the bank account with extra dollars while I have the opportunity...speaking of which I need to email them my availability for August...

After that 16 miles on Saturday and then working on my feet for almost 7 hours there...that's not gonna happen again...well it will this coming Saturday as I have 17 miles to do, but not in August! No way no how! My runs will be 20+ every other weekend and I am NOT working after those!!!

I am sooooooo behind on reading blogs...I dont read them over the weekend and on Mondays all the catch up is crazzy!!!

I leave you with this...because tonight is Lady GaGa and I couldn't be more excited!!!! I will have pictures of our outfits sometime later in the week!!!!!!!!!!! I swear when she does 'Teeth' tonight I am going to go nuts!!!!!!!!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Kenyan Way - Long Run - 16 miles

Temp: 80
Dewpoint: 73
Humidity: 92%

I started at 4:45am.  And yes that was the that was at 4:08am. 

16 miles.
10:19 average pace.

Started cratering in mile 15, about 1/2 way through that I ran/walked till I got back to base, then I just ran an oh so slow mile 16 on the loop there.  Ran too fast of miles in 13 and 14 with Erin...and I should have taken a gel at the last water stop, but I didnt.  One gel for 16 miles is not a good idea...

No rest for the weary.  Working at Lukes Locker today.  And I have to run 4 or 5 miles tomorrow as I wont be able to run on Monday because its LADY GAGA CONCERT NIGHT WITH THE GIRLS!!!  whoop!!!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A bit of a better run today.  I left the casa around 5:20ish or so and first ran to Darque Tan.  With all the icky weather and working weekends I havent (and wont) have the pool time I am use to, so I stopped off there (which its less than a block away) and tanned first.  Then I set out for a short 4 miler instead of the 6 on the schedule.

The dewpoint today was higher than I ever remember it being:  77.  And with humidity at 74% and the temp at 86 (due to cloud cover mainly), it was more like swimming than running.  I ran nice and easy but man it was still rough out there...I didnt have any blood sugar issues so thats a good thing...must have been the 2 oatmeal cookies I had today :o)

The nice thing was that about 1/2 mile from home it started pouring down rain so that was actually kind of nice! 

I am stressing out about the long run on Saturday...Its been a long time since I've done 16 miles and yeah its only 1 more than the multiple 15 milers I have done, but its more the weather conditions that have me a bit worried...I just hope to survive with minimal damage to my psyche.  I am just ready for the next 3 long runs to be over with so we can get to long one week/short the next...for whatever reason I handle those much better.

Its a Fine Line...

Well yesterday I found the fine line...the fine line of ingesting enough food and not to fuel my run.

I woke up yesterday morning not feeling all that hot.  I figured it was residual from the prior evening hot/humid/beyond sweaty run (and it was probably a contributing factor), so I didnt think much of it.

All day long I just felt 'off'.  So knowing I had 8 miles to do, I decided late in the afternoon that I was going to do them on the treadmill.  I just didnt have a good feeling about attempting that run outside given how I had felt all day.

Well 4 miles into my run, well slightly before that, I started sweating very badly.  Like sweat flying off of me and my hair was drenched.  Now this was not normal. I was not pushing it by any means...I got off the treadmill for some water and attempted to try again...not feeling well...more sweat...I remembered I had a gel or two in my gym bag, and knowing already that it was more than likely blood sugar related I ate one.  Along with more water.

Tried to run again...not gonna I decided to get on one of the circuit machines to do some weights while I 'cooled' off.  Couldnt even do those without feeling like I was going to pass out. 

I tried one more time to run and then just knew that I was past the point of no return. 

I looked back at what I had eaten and honestly I guess maybe it just wasnt enough on this particular day.  Or any day I suppose...  : /

It took me a while after getting home to feel well enough to eat, so I ate a HUGE bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios and then proceeded to sleep HARD for 9 solid hours.  I feel better this morning, and will certainly ingest more calories today :o)

I am grateful that I didnt attempt this run outside afterall as it could have been a lot worse in the heat/humidity.  My hypoglycemia hasnt reared its head in quite some time, but I need to be cognizant of the fact that I still have the condition.  Its even engraved on my Road ID in big huge letters HYPOGLYCEMIC.

You would think that would be enough to remind me.  :o)

So instead of 8 miles, I got 4.  Cie la vie.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I am an Outdoors kinda gal!

Yay for no thunderboomy's today!!!

But good God was it ever-lovin' miserable out there!

Start time: 6:30
Temp: 90
Humidity: 59%
Dewpoint: 71

Good good run though!

6 miles between 9:51 and 10:32 pace.

Tomorrow is 8 miles, 6 of them at threshold pace.  This could prove to be somewhat difficult.  :O)

Mirror Mirror on the Wall...

I'm not gonna lie...I have huge body image issues... I have had them all my life...

I remember from a very early age, hearing how my mom and dad would talk about my sisters weight (once she started gaining in her 20's)...I remember the time my mom would a) tell me to go get on this machine my Aunt Lorraine had that you put this wide belt around your hips/waist, flipped a switch and it would whittle you skinny...and b) the time she bought this 'contraption' somewhere that you hooked onto the door and there were these loops for your feet and hands to do these wacky exercises....yes...from a very early age I was either told outright or sublimily that I was fat.

And truth be told I was.  Up until 9th grade.  Add to that the fact that because I was fat (among other things) I didnt have a whole lot of friends.  I had ONE friend in Junior High.  And she was 'fluffy' too.  So then I thought fat=no friends.  These are the kinds of things that permeated my brain and to a big extent, still do.  And for off and on in my adult life there were periods where I battled my weight and rightfully so...there were 3 times where I was indeed 'overweight' barely 5'2 its not hard to go into that category without even realizing it happened...

One week I can be completely OK with my body.  Then there are those weeks where I look at photos of celebs (not the photoshopped ones) on sites like skinnyvscurvy and fitceleb and think...what exactly do I have to do to have that body?  I am not talking about the youngsters, but good God when I see untouched photos of women like Halle Berry, Jennifer Aniston, just to name a few...I think...if only...ridiculous isnt it?  I know.

If I had to label myself I suppose I would have to say I am a wee bit obsessed with the way my body looks.  Yes I know its wrong and I hate the fat-talk that goes on in my head at least once a day.  I compare myself to everyone it seems that I 'think' looks good, not to mention wonder 'am I as thin as that?' 'is she skinnier than I am?'  I dont however find myself judging those that arent 'in shape'.  Well thats not entirely true...I do sometimes but always ALWAYS when I see them being irresponsible with food.  Especially when adults are doing to their children what obviously is a very bad choice...different subject.  Different blog post.

Back to me...  :O)  ... Whenever I see a photo of myself e.g. a race, which lets face it are rarely 'good'...I cringe.  I see bad angles, a down step which makes you look like your legs are made of cottage cheese...and then what makes it to see a race photo of someone else, where every single one of them looks amazing...that recently happened...and even now I get nauseous thinking about that...its just not it just me?  Am I the only one that looks at my photo and thinks "God that is just gross..."  ... I even try and zone in on some part of me in a picture that does look good, but the bad always wins... no matter what...

How does one overcome such negativity?  I have no clue.  I have tried not caring...Part of me, at this age, knows it will never go away I suppose...maybe its even worse; these thoughts of needing to look 'better'.  Being 'older' I feel some sort of need to 'keep up'...

The reason I am writing this today...does indeed have to do with those photos I saw recently; of a someone that I already felt very inferior to to begin with...and then coupled with all the other things I see/read online, or even a state wide publication for example...its been leading up to where my head is right now...

When I get like this I start contemplating so many alternatives, mainly where food choices are concerned.  I begin to 'plan' my attack as to how to combat what is making me feel this way.  Where can I cut out meals?  How little do I think I can get by on and still train for Chicago?  For Houston?...honestly its what spurred the journaling again yesterday.  When you make yourself write down every single gummi bear you may eat, it stares at you from the white page...

I hate these feelings of negativity...they start me into a downward spiral.  I know I am not alone in this...and I generally try to keep this sort of thing to myself...but I figured well its all in my head right now, I need to get it all out.  Not for any sort of commendation or need for approval...just to get it out you know?

OK so I have rambled enough for now...back to work...

P.S.  I finally found something really cute (retro) to wear to Lady GaGa on Monday night!  And if there was/is any doubt in my head that I am not 'thin', you would think that the size XS/S on the tag would clear that up for me...but it doesn't.  I'm way too messed up in the head to let that tell me anything ;o)

Monday, July 19, 2010


Stupid Summer thunderstorms...

I thought I was going to get to run outside even though it was raining but as I was leaving work, the thunder was rolling so I headed back upstairs and grabbed my gym bag.

This morning I had PT and I was cleared for 'some' weights work, so I figured I would incorporate some of that into my running tonight since I was banished to the treadmill.

Ran 3 miles on the treadmill then hopped off, did 3 machines (upper body), then back on the treadmill for 2 more miles.  Then more weights work; doing circuit with 2 different machines followed by a set of 20 jumping jacks and/or 2 min of jump rope.  Did another 3 sets with different exercises.  Then I did my lower back stretches as dictated by the PT.  After that I hopped back on the treadmill and did 1 more mile.

I guess I can also count the 1 mile I walked on the treadmill during PT this morning, giving me 7 miles total for the day. 

Its not supposed to be thunderbooming tomorrow and I hope they are right...

In other news, I have gotten back down to my lower weight after not being so diligent, therefore today I started journaling my daily food intake again.  I wont be doing that here, but in my little notebook tucked neatly inside my purse.  Its time to try and knock off those last remaining lbs I want to lose before Chicago.

Sunday Sunday

No run.

Slept in.  Yippee!

Cafe Adobe.  Yum!

Movie.  Despicable Me.  FUNN-KNEE!  Love love loved it!

'Quality time' with BFF ... just a perfect Sunday.

Oh plus I tried a new variation on enchiladas...made veggie enchiladas last night for lunch/dinner the next few days...thinly sliced zucchini, squash, spinach and new potatoes.  Turned out ok, but I think I need to vary the recipe next time.  Maybe add in a can of Rotel...  (side note:  they are MUCH better a day later!!! eating them now for lunch and OMG!)

Today (Monday) we start 13 days of work with nary a day off...I will be working both Sat and Sun this week at Lukes, and the following Saturday as well.  Oh well, extra extra money is good good thing!

We also start the last cycle of increasing mileage every Saturday for 3 Saturdays before a cut back week...then my friends its up to 20-22 milers every other Saturday until taper...I will be thankful for those high/lower alternating weekends...I dont particularly like the increase for 3 weeks/down for 1 at this stage of the game...its exhausting :o)  I am so ready for Chicago Marathon weekend to get here!  or at the very least the taper!

HARRA applications for Houston Marathon entries expires tomorrow and sign up for the lottery begins next Monday...I will know within the next few days if I got in with a HARRA entry and bypass the lottery altogether!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Kenyan Way Long Run - Cut Back Week - 9.3 miles

Knowing I had a cut back week I struggled with thinking I should do the run faster than a normal long training run.  After asking a few if I should shoot for the whole run at goal marathon pace, I decided to take their advice and not do that.  I would however go faster than usual, and then do the last 2 miles at or below goal MP.

I ran 2 miles before the start...

The route was mapped at 7.5 but as you see the Garmin showed .3 instead of .5 for whatever reason.  Close enough.  Schedule called for 9 anyway :)

Temp was 80; Humidity was 81% and Dewpoint was 73.  OUCH.  Par for the course though.

Started out with the group and here are the splits:

.3 was at 9:59 pace

Average pace: 10:14

Feel really good about the run.  Only problem I had was shortly before the 2nd water stop I was having GI issues (ate late so I had potty issues beforehand).  Thankfully right there before that water stop to the right down a side street was a porta potty in front of a house that was being remodeled.  Thank the baby Jesus!   After that I felt better and was back on track. 

Next Saturday:  16 miles.  Lordy Lordy...  :o)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Me....On Being A Vegetarian

I am not certain, but it has been my experience more often than not, as people find out that I now consider myself a vegetarian, they do not know how to respond to what ends up happening is that I get 'mocked' or told to 'eat a hamburger, it'll make you stronger/faster', or just given a wide eyed look/gaze of shock, disbelief, and yes sometimes horror and the simple statements of 'wow' or 'why'...

I think that when people are faced with a 'situation' that dont/cant comprehend, it makes them nervous.  There is a Pearl Izumi ad about how 'running makes people nervous'.  Or was it that it 'makes joggers nervous' of those...but I think its spot on.

And I also think that most people misunderstand the difference between vegetarian and vegan.  So I get a lot of follow up questions like 'do you eat eggs?', 'do you eat [this] or [that]?' 

Its kind of mind boggling that people dont seem to be sure exactly what a vegetable is?  Kind of funny actually...

And just so we're clear, I DO eat eggs, dairy, cheese, etc...there is no way I would ever become a vegan.  And I know there are alternatives but to me that is not a true statement. 

And also...its not that I dont/wont ever eat meat.  I have and I will again.  Maybe 3 times since Lent was over.  Oh wait, make that 4.  But unless its sparingly I am NOT going to do well afterwards.  I found that out the first 2 times.  Was sick and just felt awful for days.  And thats leaving out TMI stuff :o)
Anyway, my point is that every single thing we as individuals decides to do with our lives as it pertains to ANYTHING, is really just that.  An individual decision.  I dont understand why people continually think that its their right to a) ask for reasoning behind it (outside of normal curiousity)  b) ridicule it  c) make you feel less than 'normal' .... the list could go on and on ...

You know, I actually get that from non-runners too...people are so quick to cite why they dont do this or dont do that ... to what, make themselves feel better for not taking care of themselves? 

I think its absolutely true...I think whenever someone eats well, and/or exercises for example...people who dont/arent/wont become very, very nervous...I think its brought on my shame and/or guilt?  I dont know...

Because I run or because of my choices I do not think I am better than anyone else...if YOU think that I think I am, then thats YOUR problem...Yes while I may take issue with laziness and gluttony (because it KILLS PEOPLE)...if thats how you want to live your life then so be it...
So I just ask the same respect in return...dont question or ridicule my decisions either...

P.S.  not that its anyones business, but I chose a change in WOE first off as to see if I could (during Lent; even though I wasnt a huge meat eater to begin with)...then as I began to see/feel the effects of a different lifestyle as it pertains to food, I became increasingly smitten with it all...changing the 'inside' was and has been the best benefit of all of this...not the 'outside'...because lets make one thing crystal clear...I dont do this as some 'diet'....there are some other personal reasons, which indeed have to do with the 'process' of the manufacturing of animals that I am completely against...but now we're getting into that area where I think keeping my opinion to myself is the smart thing to do...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Shoes! Shoes! Shoes!

As I figured on the first shoe talked about (Shape Up's etc.), its cheaper (and more effective) to just eat one less cookie than what those 'shoes' will accomplish for you!  The last portion is about minimalist running 'shoes' (VFF's)

Crunch Time - Day Three (and the end!)

Well, the whole try again to get up at 5 and run before work didnt happen...again the alarm went off.  And again I just turned it off and went back to sleep :o)

Today is the last day I have to cram so much into my day/evening.  And also thankfully today it will in fact be easier. 

I am leaving work early today for a Dr. appointment, so going to take my lunch late and do the gym beforehand.  So I will get in 5 miles on the treadmill, then doctor, then back to Kingwood to see Mom, then home again home again jiggity jig!

Everyone comes home tomorrow from out of town, so tonight is the last night I have Mom duty.  And NO MORE TREADMILL!!!  I am actually thinking of running tomorrow even though its a rest day just because I will have the time to run outside! 

But then again probably not.  I am so dang tired that even sitting here at work, I could lay my wittle head down and go right to sleep...

Wonder if anyone would notice?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Crunch Time - Day Two

OK, so the whole set the alarm thing for 5am to run 3 miles before work didnt work out so well.  LOL. 

I mean the clock did its job by abiding by my instruction to go off at 5am, but as I was turning it off, I said, to the clock, and yes for realz out loud, 'yeah. no.'  LOL!   Rolled right back over and slept till 5:45. 

I was poop a dooped.

However, I did make it to the gym on my lunch (also planned) and walked on the treadmill for 45 min at a 2 incline.  So I had treadmill for lunch.  Yay.  I honestly should do that more often...

Oh and some roasted new potatoes w/ a few (and I mean a FEW) scattered roasted veggies.  Followed up just now by a teeny tiny scoop of Cookies and Cream ice cream with a tidge of whip cream and roughly 10 plain m&m's on top.


So now I am 25min away from a 4 mile progressive run on the treadmill...I'm not so mad about missing my goal to run 3 before  Its a cut back week....Man I am using that a lot this week.   :o)

2 out of 3 for the day?  That's a win.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Crunch Time - Day One

As I wrote earlier, the next three days were gonna be trying for me to get workouts in a short period of time as I have to get to Mom as quickly as possible...preferably before 6:15/6:30ish...

Today I was a bit behind, first leaving my desk on time then I forgot my dang iPod and earpiece upstairs at my desk which is in another building from the gym.  Sigh.

So I ended up doing 4 miles on the treadmill then 20 min of weights.  I started to get way too sweaty and I didnt want to look like a complete scumbag at the 'facility' where Mom is.  I did anyway, but whatever :)  Thats why I stopped at 4 miles and thought doing weights would give me a chance to stop sweating so much :)  I quickly 'damped' off in the dressing room, slid on some jeans and flip flops and was out the door.  However the traffic was just horrendous (I am not use to driving on the freeways anymore when everyone else is trying to get home) I had to stop off somewhere to pick her up a 'surprise' snack.

Tomorrow I have a different game plan which includes me getting up at 5am and getting part of the days workout in before having to get ready for work...we'll see if that happens :)

Monday, July 12, 2010

6 miles
Started out at about 6:15pm as I wanted to let the sun go down a bit more; my route was to run to Rice, around and back as that is indeed my shadiest route.
102 deg heat index

Just when you think its gonna suck big time, it doesnt.  Paces were between 9:43 and 10:34.  I did intervals of 7/1's and I never felt labored nor did my legs feel like lead (I did take 2 S!caps about 15 min before I left the house).  There was a very nice breeze out and that helped tremendously.

I carried my Amphipod with G2 in it which I now know holds 20 oz.  I also tucked a washcloth over my shorts waistband like I did on Saturday and at the 2 water fountains at Rice I soaked it and used it to wipe down my face and back of the neck.  Amazing what something as little as that can do to cool you down!

The next 3 days my runs will be done on the treadmill...I'm actually a bit bummed about that now...oh well, it'll be good to give the legs (and my back) a real break from the pavement pounding!

Unplanned Sunday Hiatus

First off I am SO behind on reading blogs!!!  I apologize but I am reading slowly but surely, but my commenting is lacking I know!!!  Great job out there all you bloggers!!  Keep up the running, swimming, cycling and good eats!!!

After running 15 miles on Saturday morning, I headed off to Lukes just about 11:30 to start work.  This meant, and I had forgotten how tough it is, that I would be on my feet, standing or walking for over 6 hours after that long a$$ run!  As many of you know I am pretty much unable to eat for several hours after a run in the summer heat, but I did manage to gulp down my choco milk! 

Shortly after arriving at the store, lunch arrived (they buy the staff lunch on Saturday since its so darn busy that each person only gets about 20 min to scarf it down.  This day it was pizza and thankfully there was a veggie one and a cheese one.  After about an hour of being there, I felt like I could eat, but even if I couldnt keep it in my tum-tum I was FAMISHED!  I did get 2 slices of the veggie pizza down and man was it delish!!!  Couple of hours later and man oh man...I was legs were killing me and my PF was starting to flair up on the left side.  Thankfully I made it through and once I got out of there all I wanted to do was just crash and burn on the couch...I did take a nap before meeting up with a friend for a short visit and then falling fast asleep...all the while the plan being to run when I woke up on Sunday morning...

I woke up I guess around 7 and I was still I figured...ok so you'll run AFTER working at Lukes today...I was going to go in at 2, but ended up going in around 12:30 out at 5...since all I had had to eat was a strawberry nirvana from Jamba Juice and about 8 crackers, and little to no water...well running just wasnt going to happen...So Sunday ended up being a rest day due to me just being too tired and too busy!!!  Might be that way for all of July as I agreed to work every Saturday this month plus another Sunday...Yeah its like working 7 days a week, but its only for this month (right now) and I dont have anything else going on besides laying out by the pool or doing something mindless anyway...might as well make that extra cash!  With everything coming up, namely Chicago and then the holidays, the extra money is nice to have!

This week is going to be challenging...I have Mom duty 3 nights this week while my sister (and rest of the family) are off in Las Vegas...we were supposed to ALL be going...but with the way things are, obviously Mom cant go...and my sister NEEDED to go...she so needs the I told her to go and I would drive back and forth to the 'hospital' to see her every night.  Because I need to be there by 6:15 or 6:30...I am going to have to run on the treadmill IMMEDIATELY after getting off work then head that way.  To go home or the park and run outside just isnt going to fly.  That makes me HAVE to take a shower and all that that entails and its just wasted time.  I can run on the treadmill for my 5, 6 and 5 miles (cut back week mileage) and be on the road no later than 5:30.  Its only about 25 miles there but with the traffic it takes a while to get out there...thankfully coming home will be MUCH faster.

And since I am working again on Saturday at Lukes (after thankfully shorter mileage this week)...I guess its no secret that I cannot wait until 6:01pm on that day...I will be doing some serious 'recovery' on Saturday night and all day on Sunday...

PT is going well, met with Frank again today...still no swimming, cycling or bending over (forward)...he said based on my improvment we should be able to start working in different 'exercises' next week that have me going in the opposite direction for a change...which means maybe soon I can start doing crunches again!

Tonights 6 miler is going to be brutal...this week we have even hotter than normal temps forecasted...Going to wait till close to 6:30 before heading out...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Redemption Run - 15 miles - Solid

After last weeks long run debacle, I really needed today to go well.  I fueled well yesterday, both with food and water, and feeling better about the injury with my lower back, I felt rather confident for today, but then you just never know till you actually put rubber to the road.

I started at about 4:55am ... and am still amazed at how many people are starting so early these Saturday mornings, but I got in 5 easy miles before the group start, with a bit of time to go to the bathroom, take 2 S!Caps, and drink my Gatorade Prime.

I started again with the 4:30 group to keep myself at a slower pace for the first half of the run, but ran at the front of that pack.  I have found myself right smack dab in between my faster friends and my slower friends...what this provides for me is NEW FRIENDS!  :)  My goal today was to run MY training pace...and not someone elses.  Amazing how that works out so well.

By the time we got to Rice (8.5 miles for me at this point) I was feeling great and knew that today was going to be much better than last week...heck it was already...I took a gel at 7 miles and again at 12.5 miles.  The banana I had on the drive over was long gone!  What sucked was right at about that 12.5 miles my tum-tum started giving me fits!  And we had passed the last porta potty that I knew of and I began looking to my left and right at each cross street looking for a construction site porta potty...nothing...I was about to poo my pants!  ha!  Thankfully right before we got to Peden, I noticed the little laundromat there and that the door looked ajar.  Score!!  I turned left and ran right through the laundromat.  Nirvana!

I ended up negative splitting, running the entire way...nothing close to what happened last week.  15 solid miles at 10:36 average pace.  Right on target for training pace.

Next weekend is a cut back week, then we start bumping up the mileage...11 more Saturdays...11 more Saturdays...11 more Saturdays...

Too bad I cant be a lazy bum the rest of the day...working this weekend at Luke's Locker!  6 hours today, 3 least I can make my own hours working part time there!

Friday, July 9, 2010

You and I

Amazing song...I dont care what anyone says, the girlz got skillz...
She sure can sang ;o)
No lip syncing...write your own lyrics/music...can actually play musical instruments?
Wha???  Thank God for women who actually have talent...Gaga, Pink, Xtina...just to name a few that are still around..
And the most outrageous thing about Gaga is her fashion...not her partying...chopping off all my hair, rehab, I'm a crazy lunatic crap...and if you are ever so inclined there is a segment out there where Gaga is interviewed about her past, her strict upbringing, her love for music, and her inspiration for the music and fashion...all which, much like an M. Night Shalamayn movie, have an underlying message/moral to the madness...shes quite fascinating...

17 Days!

Been watching Lady Gaga live online this morning on The Today Show...
I cannot WAIT to go to this show!!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Great Outdoors!

Finally no thunderstorms today when it was time to run!  I just did a quick route of 4 miles and man all the rain we've had now for the past 8 days really rose up and bit me in the suck the life out of you humidity!  Still ran well, was well fed, well it was good.

Physical therapy went well today too.  He could already see improvement in my ROM (range of motion) and he added some extra exercises to make the difficulty a bit higher to help send even more blood and oxygen to the strained/messed up joint.  Its hard to do these at work, but tomorrow I must do them somehow.  I figure I can go up one floor where there is no one since we moved and can do them with no one around.

Tomorrow is rest day and then 15 miles on Saturday...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Hodge Podge

  • Pouring down thunderstorms today (which was forecasted so I had the gym bag), so it was 7 miles on the treadmill.  Yes, I'm still alive.  I did not die from boredom; almost though.
  • When I run it is the ONLY time I have zero pain in my back.
  • I was busy today at work, therefore water intake and getting up from my desk to walk every hour took a back seat.  I didnt have too much of side effects to the back because of it.  Only once or twice did I feel more pain than I have been.
  • I have mastered remembering to squat down for items on the floor if need be instead of bending over. 
  • HARRA has opened up the link to apply for a guaranteed entry into the Houston Marathon.  The stipulations are there in black and white.  I ended up with something like 43 points.  Thankfully I have run a lot of sanctioned races over the past few years and maintained my HARRA status since 2006 (except for one year because I forgot).  My volunteer efforts scored some points as well.  I feel pretty good about my chances of securing one of the 450 spots to run Houston in January without having to enter the lottery.  Yay!
  • First real day of PT starts tomorrow.  Excited.
  • On a more personal note, I always try to be nice about things, even when sometimes it means that I might not be entirely truthful.  I dont always succeed; seems like someone will always find a way to take offense...but still I try.  What I wish is that others did the same thing.  When I am not entirely truthful, it bothers me...and it piles up.  This is not good for me.  I think from now on, I am just going to be upfront and honest about things because why should I sugarcoat to spare someones feelings when everyone else (it seems) doesnt care to return that kind of compassion?  
  • I'm laying off of Facebook for a while.  I might comment here or there, who knows.  Maybe not.  Twitter is still on though.  The friends I have on there have been my friends for a very long time, and I can speak my mind without being judged.  Thats how true friends act.
  • I'm hungry.  Smoothie time.
  • Oh and I saw Knight and Day on Tuesday.  As cuckoo as Tom Cruise is he still makes one heck of an action movie.  I liked it a lot.  Worth my $8.
  • A LOT of GREAT looking movies coming out in the next several months...a Disney film about Secretariat ranks high on my list of must see, along with this Matt Damon movie (cant remember the name right now) about how all of our lives are 'planned' out...and to alter that...the consequences.  Reminds me a bit of the movie Sliding Doors (that I love) but much more intriguing...

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Started my run at about 7:30
Temp: 83
Humidity: 75
Index: 88

This is why I hate running in the morning, but since I had an extra day off...the humidity is just so high!  I almost lost my shorts a few times due to the weight of them with lost water from my body.  Yeah they're a tad too big on me but still.

I also opted not to carry the CamelBak as I didnt need the extra weight on my back, so I carried the AmphiPod which is about 16oz, much better than the FuelBelt 10oz'er.  I really concentrated on my form making sure not to slump forward and all was well.  No issues with the back, which of course hasnt been an issue when running anyway :o)

I did 7/1's today.  Just to keep the heart rate down which really helped too.  I also took some advice to really slow it down as my goal pace for Chicago is just under 10:00 miles, so I need to make sure and do the whole 30-45 sec slower thing.

Mission accomplished.

Average paces were between 10:16 (fastest) and 10:51 (slowest; first mile; not surprised as I was a bit apprehensive).

Glad to have a good 6 miles under my belt already for the to get some pool time in before we get socked with rain rain rain again...I hate hurricane/tropical storm season...

P.S.  And to all you northeast folks out there...welcome to our world.  Heat wave indeed ;o)

Monday, July 5, 2010

A Man Named Frank

Today was my first appointment at Memorial Hermann Sports Rehab with my PT Frank.  It was mostly evaluation sort of stuff; going over what dear Dr. Siff prescribed (said with sarcasm), doing some different 'exercises', 'motions', etc.

After we had a talk about this, that and the other, he made more sense to me thank goodness than Dr. Siff did or ever could.  He was aware of Dr. Siff and expressed some 'concern' and agreed with me that I should seek another opinion, however at this point we dont have to as Frank is going to somehow get Dr. Siff to sign off on what truly needs to be done.

Bottom line is that I can CONTINUE running!  It makes no sense that if MOVEMENT makes me feel better in the moment and long after, that movement is the best thing for me to heal!  There are certain movements he wants me to stay away from for now (specifically bending over forward, and NO yoga)...He said thats more than likely why I felt more pain today.  Thats fine, because I dont really care for yoga anyway...especially if its going to hinder my recovery! 

I will go 3x a week for the next 4 weeks; though he figures in 2 weeks I will be pain free 100%.  I have certain things I have to do every hour, and every 2-3 hours to maintain motion specific to the healing process and then when I see him it will be a series of different things depending on the day.

He commended me on the steps I took on my own to alleviate the pain naturally and wants me to continue to do that as well.  Told me to throw away those stupid drugs!  Yay!  I hated them anyway, but was taking one before bed.  Kind of mad because they were expensive, but maybe there will come a time when I do need them, but I certainly hope not!!  Can you return prescription drugs?  That was $100!  Gah!

OK, time to chill baby chill.

Tomorrow morning we run!!!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Independence Day!!!

3 mile run
1 hour 15 min of yoga

Now for a bit of pool time, before having to get ready for an afternoon and evening full of fun!

Be safe out there little firecrackers!!! :)


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Kenyan Way - Long Run - 14 Miles - FAIL!

After all the torrential rain we've had the past few days its no wonder that the air was especially horrid this morning...

At 6am start it was 81 deg and 97% humidity.  Recipe for disaster if you didnt do everything to prepare.  Which I didnt.

Here is what I ate on Friday:  breakfast taco at breakfast, salad at lunch with some tuna and for dinner a smoothie.  I didnt drink a lot of water either.  I dont know what I was thinking.

Anyway, I ran 2 miles before the start with Crystal; way too fast.  Then the first 3 miles out of the box with Brenda I knew I was in trouble (too fast)...My legs just were dead.  I trudged on up to about the 3.75 mile mark of the route and turned around.  By the time I got back to base I was at 9 miles, but I was dying today.  I was losing so much water and the S!Caps werent providing any relief.  I even had to walk more than I cared to.  At base, after Gatorading up, I took off and did 2 1-mile loops and called it a day.

I thought about running a second time today to get the full 14 miles, but after everyone suggesting that I not, and even some of the better runners in town having the same issues, I felt better about what happened out there.  Not that I would have been able to run anyway, as I just got home...

I had to drive out to SLand for a hair appointment (nice and newly blond again!), then from there I had to drive out to Kingwood to the nursing home to visit mom and ended up staying later than I thought as my sister had things to do and I needed to be there to help her eat (meaning I fed her) her dinner.

The back of course gave me no issues, other than when I had to sit in the car driving or sitting while my hair was being done.  Tomorrow morning is yoga at 9:30 and I plan to get a couple of miles in as well.  Then its out bar hopping with some of the girls before hitting up Freedom Fest for the concerts, the food, and fantastic fireworks over the bayou!!

I will regroup this week and next weekend will be better prepared for the 15 miles on the schedule.  :o)  Then the mileage really starts going up...seems like I have been at 12-15 miles long runs forEVAH!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Doctor, Doctor...Give Me the News...

OK, I dont even know if I even have mentioned this in the past couple of weeks on here, probably not, but I have been having some lower back issues.  Looking back now and after visiting with the doctor, I know exactly when the trigger to my 'diagnosis' occurred. 

One morning I was reaching up to a high shelf in my closet for my pink purse :o), and at the same time I sneezed.  Now when I sneeze I let it all out.  Its a full on body sneeze...When I did this I felt a 'pull' and for several days I was sore, so I knew I had pulled something.  It resided a bit if I remember correctly, not sure...but then I started having these back pains (on the left side; lower) that were excruciating.  Mostly during the day to be honest.  Whenever I would go to sit down or stand up it was awful.  Again, I thought hmm...must have pulled something, or its just residual from the newly boot-tay camp I was doing etc...After 2 weeks of that, and not even ibuprofen or anything helping to alleviate the pain, I knew I needed to have it checked out. 

Yesterday I did just that.  I found a doctor through friends at the Bone and Joint clinic in the Texas Medical Center and there I sat.  I almost cancelled the appointment because yesterday morning I felt fine...but as the day progressed the pain increased.

They put me through a series of XRays and some 'movements'...then the doc came in and we chatted some...again with some more 'tests'.  One of which was using the little hammer they use to check reflexes.  Both knees?  Check.  Right achilles?  Check.  Left achilles?  Um. Um. Um.  Nothing. My foot just sat there.  Now thinking back to after the Houston Marathon in January, for 3 weeks I had no feeling in my toes on my left foot.  Its also the same foot that I most recently experienced Plantar with (which is now gone thankfully)...this sealed the deal for him with the no reflex thing, in conjunction with the xray findings, I have what they call 'degenerative disk disease'.  Now after that, we began discussing the 'level' at which it has deteriorated, which surgery or anything like that is irrelevant in my case.  I have what they call a "lumbar strain".  He prescribed of course some muscle relaxers, some physical therapy (deep tissue massage, ultrasound and electrical shock (whaaat?), heat 2-3 times a day etc.

And no running.

Heres the thing...when I run it doesnt hurt!!!!!!!!!!  However I will take some 'precautions' over the next 2 weeks till I have to go back to see him.  I didnt run last night, nor will I run today.  I will do my long run tomorrow, take Sunday off...What I think I might do is run a day, take 2 days off.  And the days that I run (other than my long run), I will keep it at 3-4 miles.  On the days I am not running, I will hit the gym and walk on the treadmill for an hour, and do some weights. 

Here is some information that I have found out through my research:

A large part of many patients’ confusion is that the term “degenerative disc disease” sounds like a progressive, very threatening condition. However, this condition is not strictly degenerative and is not really a disease.

Part of the confusion probably comes from the term "degenerative", which implies to most people that the symptoms will get worse with age. The term applies to the disc degenerating, but does not apply to the symptoms. While it is true that the disc degeneration is likely to progress over time, the low back pain from degenerative disc disease usually does not get worse and in fact usually gets better over time.   Yay!

Another source of confusion is probably created by the term "disease", which is actually a misnomer. Degenerative disc disease is not really a disease at all, but rather a degenerative condition that at times can produce pain from a damaged disc.  The low back pain is generally made worse with sitting (um YES!) since in the seated position the lumbosacral discs are loaded three times more than standing.

The pain may start after a major injury (such as from a car accident), a minor injury (such as a fall from a low height), or a normal motion (such as bending over to pick something up)  Hello big ass sneeze in an awkward position!! 

Certain types of activity will usually worsen the low back pain, especially sitting, bending, lifting and twisting.

Walking, and even running, may actually feel better than prolonged sitting or standing.  Um.  Yes.  This IS true.  The pain is 200 times worse during the day while I am at work.  My plan for the time I am at work is to about every hour is to get up and go take a walk over to the next building and back.  We have a 'campus' here which is 5 buildings and all connected by tunnel so its easy for me to do regardless of weather.

Patients will generally feel better if they can change positions frequently, and lying down is usually the best position since this relieves stress on the disc space.

So there you go.  Just have to take it easy for a couple of weeks, recover from the strain and we're good.  I fully  intend to keep training for Chicago!!!  11 weeks to taper!!!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Till I Collapse

First off, the song "Till I Collapse" is one of my FAVORITE songs on my iPod (along with Lose Yourself), as they both have gotten me some grueling treadmill runs and a few hardcore weights sessions.
Good stuff to be motivated by...

Secondly, not that I will ever do an Ironman, because honestly I dont think I would ever be able to swim 2.4 miles in whatever the cutoff time is...I think 2hours and something...still, I watch all the Ironmans as they are tape delayed on Universal Sports Channel through my cable...I love to watch and am infatuated and yes watching them, even though I may just be a runner, a cyclist from time to time and yes, even a swimmer as it pertains to Sprint still resonates with me...because even if you are 'just a runner' the emotions and perservence regardless are the same...whether it be for the 5K casual runner, the 1/2 marathoner, the marathoner or the Ultra marathoner...There is one thing that we all have in common, and also the one thing that we will all face more than once while we are out there...

Do YOU have what it takes???
When the going gets tough???

Watch this YouTube video and try and tell me it doesn't make you just want to crash through barriers, walls and whoever/whatever might try to get in your way...Make sure you turn that volume up REAL LOUD...great lyrics...Love my Eminem!!

The Ironman here is one that I have seen countless times on US network...