Monday, February 28, 2011

Momma Got Some New Shoes (Brooks Ravenna)

I have several different makes of running shoes (Adidas, Saucony and Brooks), mostly those are ones I use for short distance types of races but I, and have been for 2 years now, running exclusively in the Nike Triax (not shown) for any and all training runs and races over a 10K distance. 

Once I healed up from the stress fracture (back in 2009) and one of the techs at Luke's told me something that regardless of what I did before, somewhere along the way I started pronating (but still running in a neutral shoe with me commiting mileage abuse it was just bound to happen).  Anyway, the Triax is very light weight, stabile and has been my love ever since.  However the past year with the exception of once they just keep coming out with the same color over and over and over.  Sick to death of pink/fushia and/or blue.  Blech.  So I kept researching other makes (with the same type of shoe) but nothing would compare to the Triax in its lightweighedness.

Until now.

I saw this shoe last week in the store while working and I just kinda mulled it over, picked it up...light...and it was indeed a shoe to fit my needs for my pronation (and again while still being light)...I did nothing.  My shoes I have now are still good; I don't need new shoes yet.

This past Saturday.  See shoes again front and center (since Brooks was sponsor for Rodeo Run).  Pick them up.  Me likey orange.  Put them back.

Then yesterday while working yet again (but yay for big 2nd paycheck coming this Friday), one of co-workers puts a pair on.  Convinces me too.  Finally.
OMG.  L.O.V.E.  Now granted I only ran a bit in the store, but I could tell a difference in just putting them on.  

This new shoe is built like a performance trainer, so it's exceedingly light and flexible for a stability model; I was really surprised. Offers good cushioning, a snug arch wrap (love this!!), and a spacious forefoot that bends up slightly at the tip for an easy toe-off.  The tilted up toe part was immediately noticable to me and I wonder if it will help with even just a second or two faster?

Anyway, I walked out of the store with them still on.  Good thing about working there is not only the big discount I get but that I can pay for them later.  Besides if I don't like them after running in them this week, I will just take them back.  Another good thing about Luke's! (and that is for everyone not just employees)

Haven't run in them yet, that comes this evening.  I can't wait!!!

O.S.C.A.R...My picks for Best Dressed (click picture for better viewing)

Hailee...I just adore her and her choices all awards season have been spectacular and age appropriate for a 14 year old!  I loved that she helped design this dress as soon as she knew she was a nominee.  She was just awesome in True Grit!

I am NOT a Gwenyth fan, however I did absolutely love this gown and her whole look.  I think its ridiculous though that Oscar introduced her as Country's newest singing star?  WTF? 

TO. DIE. FOR.  I absolutely LOVED her hair (yes I know its a hair piece) but I just loved this gown and her whole look.  I think she nailed it...

Loved Amy in The Fighter!!!  And I thought she looked fantastic and until I saw this dress on her actually on stage I wasnt sure about it, but I love it!  However...huge green emeralds with that cobalt blue dress?  I just dont get that AT ALL.  The huge green stone around her neck looked ridiculous against the blue and then the bracelet too?  Weird pairing.

Oh Halle how I do love thee?  You can do no wrong in my eyes and always choose the most amazing dresses...

For weeks now I have been pondering cutting all the hair off again...even shorter than I had I chose this close up of Halle to show since thats how I am thinking of cutting it.  I dont know...hard to pull off unless you are waif-y I think, otherwise you risk the 'you look lesbian' thing...which isnt an insult by any means, but I like my femininity you know?  I dont know that I have the cajones to just whack it all off!!!!  Thoughts?

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Green Day

No, not the singing group.

I had myself a green day today.  After getting up this morning and doing a DVD workout (Hip Hop Abs: Fat Burning Cardio)...

  • I took my little 'green' grocery sacks and walked the half mile to the grocery store.  Here's a tip:  you save double because you truly only buy what you need because you know you have to carry it home somehow on the walk back home.  2 bags = what will fit in 2 bags.  Any time I thought about picking something up, I looked in my basket and thought...hmmm...that wasnt on the list and I don't know that it will fit in the bags...
    • After shopping I did exactly that; walked the 1/2 mile back home, just me and my 2 sacks of groceries
  • Then as I was working yet again today at the Locker, I 'gassed' up the Trek (put air in the tires) and then proceeded to ride my bike to work and back home again.
I am not one of those that go on and on about being 'green' but I do think its very important and I do try small things here and there, but I am beginning to think about more of the 'smaller' things I can do to not only be green but heck, every little penny you save in gas etc., isn't it that just that much more rewarding?

I don't know...I felt pretty good about the 'small' things I did today.  Of course 75deg weather makes doing some things like that just a wee bit easier!

Do you try to be green?  Even in the smallest of ways?  Like what?

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Kenyan Way Long Run - 12 Miles

A perfect morning for a run, which translated into a perfect run for me.  Huge negative split.  Ran the first part of the run about 10:30 average pace with the last part run at 10:00 pace with my final mile at 9:35.

Worked all day at Luke's Locker.

Feet and legs are now dead tree trunks.  :)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Happy place.  I can't wait to get there today.  I need my happy place.  Bad.  Negative energy from others just puts me in a craptastic mood.  I know better, but it kinda snuck up on me today.
There is nothing that 90 min of hot yoga can't cure; this much I know for sure.
Negative energy be gone I say!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wednesday Wow

Warm up: 20 min easy

H.I.I.T. Workout

2 min at 8:30pace
2 min at 4.5mph
x 5

2 min at 9:13pace
2 min at 4.5mph
x 5

2 min at 10:00pace
1 min at 4.5mph
x 5

(total:  55 min)


20sec at 8.5mph (7:27pace)
10 sec off
x 8 (total 4 minutes)

Total workout/treadmill time = 79 minutes

Weights (mostly back, bi's and tri's); One machine for quads

I might die.  :)

So I have been catching up on everyone's blogs and daaaaaaaayum you people are busy!  And you all need to quit signing up for marathons because you are going to make me want to!!!  And I said I wasn't going to marathon train this year!!!  Now quit it!!!


I just finished reading my March 2011 issue of Clean Eating!  OMG!!!  So many awesome things in this one!!!  Super excited to cook in March!  Look for the first recipe/dish after this weekend!  Made my ingredient/shopping list (which is minimal: both in volume AND $)
My life the past 2 days...I still dont know if its the PMS or the detox...all I know right now is ... WHEN'S LUNCH!?!?!?!?
I am thinking a detox during PMS is not the smartest thing, but eh, TOM is stupid and shows up a week early without fucking calling me?  WTF?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Miscellaneous Updates (Changes)

  • I won't be doing Texas Independence Relay after all.  Apparently I was only an alternate (didnt realize that), and then on the last registration day, there was only 1 spot and 3 girls, so there was that.  I was only slightly bummed.  Then last week they indeed needed someone else, but by this time I had the news of Moms worsening condition, and there is no way I can commit to a team knowing what I knew.  Heck as it is now, and has been for over 6 months now, every time I plan something I know there is the chance that I might not be able to actually do it.  Its just the way it is, and thats OK.
    • I have officially signed up for Angie's Half Crazy Marathon though at the end of March.  And then of course there are a few other (short distance) races scattered in April then Bay to Breakers in May!!!
  • I won't be moving this year.  I thought my car was going to be paid off in April, and it is...just not until 2012.  How I was off by a year, I have no idea, but I was.  Again, only slightly bummed.  Will try and make a couple of extra payments if I can.  If not, eh.
  • Yesterday I started back on the de-clutter/purge that I have been doing off and on.  If I have to stay where I am then I need to keep doing this until I am satisfied that the only things I have in my house are either things I really need or are sentimental to me.  And heres case in point:  I put a bunch of books out for whoever to take, and I've had those books piled forever.  And right now I can only tell you the names of 2 of them:  Purpose Driven Life and Eat, Love, Pray.  I thought about keeping those 2, I really did, but then I thought:  Someone else might be able to use these for the same reasons I needed them, but maybe can't afford them, or don't even know that they need them.  Then I felt like in some small way I might have helped someone (they both helped me when I really needed it).  This weekend I tackle clothes again since I will be storing away winter stuff and taking out Spring/Summer stuff.  I know there is a lot of stuff thats going to be going.  I already have one large trash bag ready on the porch to go to Goodwill.
  • I have come up with March's goal:  No computer or phone (apps) outside of work.  I will check my (personal) email once at home in the evening and thats it.  No Facebook, no Twitter, no WWF's, nothing.    I just want to be technology free for at about 50% of my workdays, and even moreso on weekends; I will check email once, but again, no computer or phone (apps).  I will use my phone for what it was intended:  To talk to people if there is a need. 
  • Oh and yesterday was the first day that I took my own reusable (green!) shopping bags to the grocer!  I loved doing that!  No more plastic bags!!!
I think that just about covers it.  For now.

No Really...I AM Still Alive...

Things are just really messed up right now; Mom is still hanging in there, but as some of you know, its definitely NOT good.  After running and then working at Luke's on Saturday I headed out there late and didnt come home until yesterday.  2 days of basically no sleep and emotional/physical strain will make you a crazy person.

And when I did come home, I didn't feel well at all, so spent the morning trying to feel better.  I did manage 4 miles but it was tough going.  I just did what I could and that was that.  Started feeling better later in the afternoon, but it was back with a vengance this morning, but seems to be subsiding yet again. 

I somehow woke up before the alarm I had set so I could run a few before work, so I turned it off.  However I must have drifted off to sleep again because the next thing I knew it was 10 till 6 and there went that.

Hot yoga this afternoon.  Oh how I am looking forward to that.  I also started back on the 3 day detox this morning.  Its been just over a month since the last time, and as previously mentioned its something I would like to do about once a month.

I am so behind on blogs, so this morning I just marked them as all 'read'.  Hoping to catch up at some point :O)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Pretty sure this is what I looked like after the run this morning!

11 mile run with Kenyan Way this morning.  One of my favorite routes UNTIL the last 2 miles which are along the 'goat trails'.  I forgot my patella band and by the time I hit the bayou my knee was ouchy.  I have gotten out of the habit of wearing it, but that can no longer happen.
Fog so thick that it was 'raining' and the high humidity made it feel close to not being able to breathe.  Add in the stress factor of just 'life' and I had to slow way down those last 2.  Eh.
Now to work a shift at the Locker and then on to the fam's house to spend some time with momma.  :(

Friday, February 18, 2011

Thursday, February 17, 2011

World's Fastest Workout - Tabata - 4 Minutes

Wow.  Don't kid yourself.  If you do this right, your heart is going to feel like its going to beat out of your chest!

HIIT is a Hit!

So I have been researching after reading so much (and also hearing about HIIT=High Intensity Interval Training) about this 'new' method for accelerating not only fat loss but your strength and endurance.  CrossFit, and also the BeachBody (P90x, Insanity etc.) have a bit of HIIT background as well.  I have seen amazing results with personal friends in both body (shape and composition) and strength/endurance so I have been biding my time waiting for the perfect segway into giving this a shot.

Enter the start of speed training.

I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to see what, if anything this kind of workout would do.  I more or less put together a hodgepodge of a 'plan' together and set off for the gym yesterday. 

I had no idea what speed on the treadmill I could sustain for a minute interval let alone for 5 sets, so at first it was trial and error.  I jokingly had told someone that I was going to try at about 9mph.  LOL.  I didnt, but I did try at 8+mph and I almost flew off the back!  I could do it holding on, but you are supposed to do it at whatever speed without holding on.  Besides I know I couldnt have done it for 5 sets.  Before starting all of this I had done 20 min easy run to warm up.

So I put it at 8:00min miles (7.5mph) and that was doable.  By the time I got to the 5th one, I was feeling a bit braver and put it at 7:47pace.  Let me tell you by the time I got through, I was a sweaty mess and thought I was going to puke.  I think thats constitutes success.  :O)

I ran easy for an extra minute after the last interval, making it 3 min easy before I started again.  This time I put it at an easier pace (9:13) and did 2 min/1 instead of the 1min/2 in the first round. 

This made for 30 mins solid of heart pounding running, after the initial 20 min, and then I just cooled down with 5 min easy.  55 min total.

Then it was time to hit the weights for the same process.  Now this is where I am a little sketchy and probably Tabata (still researching) is probably more applicable, but I went at it with the 1 min full on attack as I had on the treadmill.

Again the hardest part here is determining what weight (max) you can do for a period of 1 min (fast) and then on to another machine/exercise immediately for another 1 min (fast) before your 'recovery'.  I thought parts of me were going to exhaust but I powered through.  I did ONE leg machine (something I try and stay away from because my running suffers from it), and I didnt do the HIIT.  I also used the Step for some step up back lunges, while using 5lb weights for bicep curls for extra cardio, but not nearly what I did a couple of weeks ago that made my calves so sore for 3 days it was crazy!

All in all I spent almost 2 hours in the gym and walked out of there a bit more limp than what I was when I went in, but felt really good with the overall workout thats for sure.  If my gym was open on weekends I would totally do this once on the weekend, but not the case.  Right now I am only going to do this on Wednesdays (will experiment with the treadmill part next week), because I am not willing to give up any of my hot yoga classes just yet :O)

If I get enough research in on Tabata (method) I might incorporate that in on the weights section next week; we'll see.

Plus I found Hip Hop Ab's cheap on eBay so that will be coming soon and I want to do that a few times a week as well...

Sounds like a lot huh?  Well I am on a mission and I aim to be successful at it!  More on that as we move along.

Have you ever done HIIT?  Tabata?  Thoughts?

Here is a link with some very basic information for HIIT and the treadmill

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Inspiration (and What Makes Me Happy Today)

The kind of abs I what if she's 25...  LOL
Well....not that I have been working at this really, it was still always something I dreamed about (and maybe in a couple of years it will become serious again for me)...but looks like at least for a while that I need to keep focusing on the other dreams...which is fine, because there are so many other things out there on my bucket list that needs to be attended to first :O)

Boston announces new admission rules and qualifying times

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Life Happening....

I may be sporadic with is happening...Mom bueno...but we're hanging in there...

Here is workouts update:

Sunday:  Short, easy 3 miler (then off to work at the Locker so 6 more hours on my legs..ouch)
Monday: 6 miles; started out doing 7/1's because my legs were so dead from Saturday and Sunday; but then things loosened up and the last 2 miles were great.  Great news is that the warmer weather is here (for how long I dont know, but it was great to sweat my ass off during the run this afternoon!!)
Tuesday:  90 min hot yoga

Peace and cupcakes.  :O)

Monday, February 14, 2011

60 Minutes - Overtime (and Jay Leno)

The story behind the making of the 60 Minutes Lady Gaga interview (aired last night).
For some reason I cannot embed the actual video on blogger right now...its been happening a lot and makes me snarl :O)

I really couldn't care less what anyone says or thinks about her, I have seen enough personal interviews with her to make the opinion myself and actually open my mind up to her story, why she does what she does, what she's put up with, and yes, the truth behind each and every 'costume'.  Believe it or not, there is a reason and a message for every single one of them.  Its mostly though, at the end of the day, to be a distraction so that people will focus on that and not her personally; maintaining a sense of privacy if you will.  And she is talented beyond crazy, classically trained pianist, etc. not to mention the fact that when it comes to socialogy I can't think of anyone that has more to offer in her take on people in general and honestly how fake we really all are (some more than others).

And I love what she has mentioned about her past drug use (cocaine) and her current drug use (pot); The difference between her and all the other artists?  She doesn't lie about it.


I am unable to actually drill down to the actual Anderson Cooper interview that was aired last night; you can see it, however no easy way to do so without going through 60 Minutes and fast forwarding through and it makes you listen to commercials if you try and FF too far at one time :O)  It is as 43:02 for anyone who cares.

Her story and how she feels about life and how it was actually meant to be lived is simple.  Its apparent in her speeches at her concerts (I cried at one point when I went to see her because yes, I felt like she was talking to me).  Because certain songs of hers can be construed (and most times are) as anthems to GL etc. community, most are generic and can be applied to most of us (people just hear what they want to hear so they can try and make her into some idiot only to fail).   And speaking of that; Who are we as a people when pleasure is taken from not only wishing, but dying to see someone/anyone fail.  Are we that insecure and selfish?  I believe so.  She speaks of this in the 60 minutes interview (and actually that part is in the Overtime segment as well)

Are you that person?  You're a liar if you say no.  At least 98 out of 100 people I know are, so it's ok.

Her recent single "Born This Way" while yes seems to be GL driven, it also hits home with me, in just accepting who I am, who I have always been, but because of so many reasons, I too, was fake. 

And so like Gaga, I am who I am and honestly if someone doesn't like it, thats their problem. 
I'm on the right track baby, baby I was Born This Way.
sidenote:  one of my favorite parts is when she first walks in and Cooper asks about what she's wearing (which isnt much) and she's just like: I really didn't want to wear clothes today.  I just felt like putting nothing on except my McQueen boots.
I took pleasure in this because of late, its been something I have been working towards: not doing crap I don't freakin' want to do.  So dumb.  Yet everyone does it!  And we make fun of those that don't?  Who's got it right here and who's got it wrong?

And I fell asleep on the couch, but for whatever reason woke up just as LGG was coming onto the Jay Leno show.   This was indeed a great interview I thought!

Gaga on Jay Leno (3 parts)

Really you should watch.

And because I probably ruffled some feathers (which I never really want to do (to most) because I guess I hold a higher standard on these celebrities!) on Sunday re: Miranda Lambert and that AWFUL choice of a dress she chose for her performance, this is for you.  First off, there is nothing wrong with embracing your curves or whatthefuckever.  I get that.  I have friends that do that; they dress appropriately (and look fantastic by the way)...although some people I would like to pistol whip because less is NOT more when you have MORE...just sayin'...anyhoohoo...

Embracing your curves means dressing for your body type and not being afraid to step outside of your comfort zone AS LONG AS IT LOOKS GOOD...

However when you are a bit on the chunkier side (been there myself) you choose appropriately.  You wear something FLATTERING.  Not a full on sequined mini-dress WITHOUT Spanx (the dress was bunching up for Gods sake) and if you have big ta-ta's then wear a dress with straps!! 

Why oh why she didn't wear what she wore on the red carpet I dont know...
Here she is looking FANTASTIC on the carpet before the show (who cares if its been photoshopped?  Every picture you see has been for the most part; get real people), and because of what she chose, she actually appears to be in better shape.  She has always battled her weight (welcome to the club) so choosing what works for her is key IMHO.  At least this fits better, lengthens her AND has a strap to hold up the boobage.


I cannot find a decent picture of her on stage during her performance but she looked ridiculous. 
Probably why I can't find any.

And I won't apologize for speaking my mind either.  See above in the Gaga section.

p.s. This was tweeted by E!:
Think sparkly dresses are an appropriate choice for an awards show? Think again. The fembot number worn by Miranda Lambert (Female Country Vocal) practically blinds us when one of its blasted sparkles hits the light.

February Food Experiment - Tres

This was is a WINNER!  Will definitely be making this again!
Seriously this stuff is so dang good and today it was WAAAAAAAAAAAY better than last night!

Vegetarian Lasagna (not only meat free but pasta free too!!!)

Chopped up some roasted garlic, then also drained the Extra Firm tofu (same brand as last time).
I did not press out anything though, just left a bit of whatever was in there, in there.  Broke it apart
in a mixing bowl. 

Added rosemary, roasted garlic, salt, and yes, red pepper flakes, green onion; along with some basil.
Basically I would say anything goes here and just season to taste is what I did.  Guessed and hoped
it came out ok!

Slice small red potatoes very thin, spray with OO non-stick spray on the foil works good and even on top if you want; salt and pepper too if you want.  I did.  Its sorta like making potato chips!

More sliced taters...bake these for about 15 minutes 425; less if you have them paper thin (I had a couple that were too thin and got crispy burnt.

Then you start layering..I first put a little bit of sauce (whatever you want to use) on the bottom of the baking dish

....Then a layer of the potatoes, a layer of the tofu mixture...

Theeeeeeeeeeeeeeen...I added a layer of spinach!

Then more sauce, more potatoes, more tofu mix, spinach (that was the last layer of spinach I put), but basically it came out to 3 layers of potatoes as with everything else and 2 layers of spinach.

Bake at 375 for 25 minutes and IT WAS AWESOME!  You just cut it out like you would a hunk of lasagna; I used a smaller baking dish, more like a square and about 9x9 I guess; you obviously could use bigger but would need to accomodate with extra fillings of everything.

Also, on the top layer there are less potatoes because I was ran out; the other layers were tightly put together much like if you had lasagna pasta noodle layers.

If you want the the original recipe with really pretty pictures you can go to Megan's blog and see it here. You will just need to scroll pretty far down in the post.

Do You Know the Way to San Jose? May...I am going to Cali to visit my friend Lisa!!  AND we're going to run a little race that's been around for 100 years...that's totally crazy and fun!

Beer Aid Stations?  Yep.
I am going to run the oh so popular Bay to Breakers!!!  Its a 12K, which I can do in my sleep, except in my sleep there are no hills...I might need to see a course map or something!  But really this race is just a bookend to what will be a great 5 day getaway in wine country!   She lives right smack dab in the middle of it (and I've seen pictures of her house and the view) so I am super excited!

Course Description:
The historic Bay to Breakers is a USA Track and Field Certified 12k (7.46 miles).
From sea level at the Embarcadero the course rises steeply along the Hayes Street Hill. Around the 2.5-mile mark runners climb an 11.15% grade between Fillmore Street and Steiner Street.

The remainder of the course gradually flows downhill alongside the Panhandle through Golden Park to the Finish Line at the Great Highway. 

The race itself, if you google it, along with Bay to Breakers training plans, you will be amused.  It does draw very fast runners (my Coach runs it almost every year), but its really about the spectacle of it all, complete with 'centipede' (we have a similar race here with centipedes); outrageous costumes and debauchery!  While I do take my races a bit more serious, I do fully intend to go out there, run with Lisa in whatever outfits/theme we come up with and just have a ball!  And if you google Bay to Breakers race photos, you are going to see a lot of nudity.  Just a warning!  Naked running?  Sign me up!  :O)  I obviously am not going to post any of the naked running photos, but I am a little surprised at a) how many people run this naked and b) that they are allowed to!!

We will definitely have the sex factor going!
I registered on Saturday, but because I registered so late (it sells out quickly) I had to get in a corral that is much slower pace than what we plan on, but thats ok.  We can make up the time along the way if we choose to!  And who is to say we can't manuever our way into the 10:00 pace corral (which is where we wanted to start) anyway on race day!

And wow, I love this look!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Kenyan Way - Long Run

10 miles.
Average pace:  10:21 pace

Since the group was going to be running basically by my house I opted to sleep in and then just meet up with them at the first water stop that was just about a mile away from my house.  I headed out around 6:15 and as I was approaching the water stop, the first few (faster) groups were already past it.  I didnt have to wait long thankfully as it was 31deg out and I didnt want to have to stand around for too long.

Probably about 5 min and here comes the 4:15 group and there was Megan!  Whoop!  So I did the route with her from that point on, but on the way back I turned off at Westheimer and headed back towards home.  Decided to stop off by the house, get a drink of water, lose the gloves and headed back out for the last mile. 

As cold as it was I was dressed perfectly for a change and the legs felt really good this morning.  I really am looking forward to warmer temps but honestly when its colder out I do so much better.  I think its because basically I cant feel my legs :)  The one thing about this morning was that it was nice to chat along the run, which I normally dont care to do.  I did run with music, but kept one earbud out so that I could hear Megan.  She really hasnt been running since Chicago and I needed to pace her without her realizing it.  Proud of her for doing the full route and negative splitting as well!  Its tough to go from marathon training, to doing a hot ass marathon and then nothing.  She has been struggling to do even 6 miles on her own, so I know she was thankful for the distractions this morning.

I am still having issues with the Garmin; its not downloading for some reason, but at least I can see the average and the splits on the watch itself.  It appears to be charging right now, but I am not entirely sure if it is!  I dont want to have to break down and buy another one :(

Have a happy Saturday!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Oh thank you for Friday!  SRD!!!  I needed a break man!  Last night I went to YBC for 90 minutes of sweatin' good fun with Gayle (my faaaaaaaaaaaaavorite instructor) for some hot, hot yoga, and boy was it HOT in there fo sho last night!  Seemed more humid but that typically happens whenever there are more people there; and I just love it when she puts the temp up to around 120! 

Usually not crowded at the 4:30 practice(s) but this week, both on Tuesday and yesterday they were.  I was just so glad Gayle was back and also that a certain someone was there again last night...We'll just leave it at that for now, but at least I wasn't a complete boob last night and the conversation didn't make me feel like I was a 13 year old school girl :O)

I am still having issues with my 'hover' (issues = I cant get closer to the ground than maybe 8 inches?  guessing at that; I have no idea, I just know its not 3 inches!) but at least I am really good at chatarunga pushups!  Eventually my 'hover' 3 inches off the floor will happen!  I just know it!  And if ever there comes a day that I dont actually hate half moon ... I love every pose... but man how I loathe half moon.  I don't know why, I just do.  Even balancing stick, as hard as that makes me want to puke and my heart beat out of my chest, I would rather do that over and over again rather than 2 sets of half moon poses...

OK all you yogi's out there!  What pose do you just absolutely loathe?

Tomorrow morning?  10 mile run with Kenyan Way!  Whoop!


This part of the entry isn't going to make much sense, so that I will tell you right now.  However something has been in my head since Saturday...something my sister said to me; well actually it wasnt to me exactly, she was telling a story to me in the middle of a very grown up conversation about life (and where we were in all of that). 

At the moment she said it, I sat there, dumbfounded.  Speechless really.  I didn't know what to say to her ... so I said nothing.

She was telling the story of the time where she was, at the time the President of the bank, and they had just been bought out and after a bit of time she was called upstairs by whoever it was and was then told that she was being demoted, less money, less responsibility etc.

As she sat there she said, I was obviously upset, but I didnt cry.  I just sat there digesting it.  I got up, walked around the conference room a few times while the lady just watched her (expecting my sister to freak out).  And she kinda wanted to she said (you have to know my sister).

After a few moments, she stopped, looked at the woman dead in the eye and said:

Sister: That's fine.  We're good.
Lady:  What?
Sister: We're good.
Lady: What do you mean? (clearly dumbfounded and probably thinking my sister was one of the calm people that was going to come back after lunch and shoot the place up)
Sister:  I have lost a child to a horrific accident.  He died.  My child died.  There is nothing, NOTHING, you or anyone can do to me that is worse than that.  This job?  Its just that.  A job.

The lady had no idea what to do with that information.  My sister went on to still work there for many years, always outselling everyone in that bank and amongst all the other branches.  BTW, my nephew was killed (in a 1 car accident) just a couple months shy of his 21st birthday :(

Today my sister is the President of another bank, and still grieves for her lost son.  Just recently that woman contacted my sister and told her that on that day, her words changed the way she looked at life.  She left the bank that had given her crap for so long after she realized it just wasn't worth it anymore.

What did it do for me (not just that particular part of the conversation but the overall content)?

It just solidified to me that a) my sister and I are finally close again and that I love, respect and look up to her and b) that the changes I have made in my life not only make me proud, but my sister is proud of me too. 

The way she looks at me says it all.

I don't know why I keep remembering the conversation overall and particularly that part...I guess because in my life I have had some pretty awful things happen to me (awful in my context)...awful is relative I suppose...and I kept trying to think of what the worst thing was and how I could apply that whenever something went wrong or didn't go exactly the way I had wanted it, that it just wasn't that bad you know?  My overall take on life in general has already changed so much but still there are those days...  :O)

Anyway I just felt like I needed to share this for whatever reason.  Sometimes I think I am crazy.


Don't Be a Drag, Just Be a Queen! Baby I was Born This Way!

New Gaga single released today!  Yes I am a dork and I have been WAITING for today like nobody's business!

Excellent tempo for a running song!!!
Want to listen?  Go HERE!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

How Many Days Until ...

... We can complain about how hot it is?

Seriously I am so over this cold weather it's not even funny.  I swear its hot yoga that has made me such a wimp.  :O)  But to be fair, 24deg with a wind chill of 14deg at 4pm in the afternoon is really, I think, cold enough for a lot of people to submit to the gym/treadmill.  At least that's what I tell myself.

So due to all the weather woes of yesterday, I did not get out in the morning for a short run, nor a follow up run outside either.  Instead I retreated into the gym to do my run on the treadmill.  I really didn't have a workout persay planned, just to do an hour on the treadmill, followed up by some weight training (to wit I had already decided I need to step it up in this area; putting heavier weights and less reps for a while).

So to beat the boredom of the treadmill, I figured some speed/intervals would help (they always do).  Now a lot of people go through great lengths to figure out their intervals on the treadmill, for example, Julie over at PBFingers (not to mention a host of others, but I saw hers this morning so she gets to be the example)  :O)

Here is her nice little chart:


I don't have a chart, and if I did I don't know how to insert into blogger, unless you make it a picture and post it that way (like I just did for hers)...

Anyway my intervals were more like...hmmm...Run moderate for 3 songs, run real fast for 1 song, then walk on 1 incline for 1/2 song and then ease back into running moderate for 3 more songs.  :O)

And then sometimes a really great 'run fast song' would come on and I just just run fast for no reason whatsoever!  Charts and rules be damned I say! 

It honestly does make the time go by faster.  My hour was up before I knew it and I felt like I had gotten what I needed out of it.

Since I dont have a KW schedule this Spring (first time since 2007 that I have taken a real break from KW (although I will still be running with them on Saturdays), I am going to come up with something though thats a little bit more 'refined' for Wednesday speed workouts.  I know I need to do 200's, 400's, 800's and 1200's, I just havent gotten around to figuring that all out yet.  That will more than likely happen next week...

Then it was on to weights where I made my biceps, triceps, and shoulders scream "I want my mommy!".  Surprisingly I am not sore this morning and I think all the chatarunga pushups I do at hot yoga helps out in that respect.  I have me some strong arms that much I will say...

And speaking of hot yoga?  YES!  Today is Thursday which means there is a big fat Sharpie'd HY on my Runners World calendar for today! 

Yay for hot yoga!  90 minutes of bliss coming right up!

So are you a slave to the ritual of having a plan when doing intervals or do you just wing it most of the time?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

February Cooking Experiment "Dos"

Well for some reason my pictures of my 2nd little experiment disappeared.  :O(  I would have been a bit more peeved had it been something elaborate but alas, all I was doing was attempting to roast chickpeas. 

The 'recipe' I followed was easy.  Drain the chickpeas (canned), dump in a bowl and cover with vinegar.  Set in refrigerator for overnight.

When I got home, I drained them again, scattered in a baking pan, drizzled with EVOO, salt and cayenne.  Yes I put cayenne on and in just about everything.  :)

Bake at 440 (which I turned down to 400 because I heard too much 'popping' going on in there and I was afraid of an oven fire or something!), for about 20-25 minutes, shaking the pan every 10 min or so to 'turn' the c'peas.  I think one should just eye those suckers because depending on the oven you could end up with burnt chickpeas.
While they tasted yummy right out of the oven (after cooling just slightly), I had done this to have to put on salads and such, which I did the next day.

Me no likey.  I guess I am just going to enjoy my chickpeas the old fashioned way.  Plain and right out of the can.

The next item, while not really ambitious or anything, its just something I see Julie over at PBFingers eat a lot of the time, and I have been meaning to just try it.

Simple really.  A bagel thin, a thin application of crunchy peanut butter, a bit of granola and sliced apple!  This is what I had for breakfast this morning (along with the remainder of the apple) and it was la-la-licous!

I will definitely be doing this easy as (apple) pie little gem over and over.  It tasted so good to me that it put me in a good mood!  How fun is that?

I have a new recipe I will be trying this weekend.  Hopefully this time I don't 'lose' the photographs!!!


Last night was 90 min of hot yoga and it felt so good to be back!  The weather last week just ruined everything!  I had a bit of nausea throughout and even afterwards, but I am chalking that up to either not drinking enough during the day and during class .. or something.  I dont know but it kinda sucked.  The class was still ok (substitute instructor that I didnt care for); I was just happy to be back in there!  The weather has turned horrible again here:  raining, windy, cold and 2 more nights of below freezing temperatures.  That means I didnt run this morning, and I will be doing all my miles on the treadmill tonight, along with some serious weights.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

True Grit

...and I am not talking about the movie (neither of them).

You know I give credit where credit is due, whether someone does a triathlon, or their first marathon, their first race of any kind really.   Then there is some awe that I reserve for those that are called elites, whether its truly elite (professional) or just a local guy/girl who can run faster than everyone else most of the time.  Or at least in the top 3 or so.  I even know someone (a couple of them actually) that aspire to make the Olympic marathon trials here in January 2012. 

Then there are those that I know that are (or have done) an Ironman, sometimes quite a few times.  A couple of people I know have done 50K's (31 milers). 

I know a lot of people with a lot of guts and determination and dreams as big as they come.

But does anyone really know when they set out for a dream or a goal know deep down inside what they are made of?  What they will sacrifice?  That they will persevere above any and everything that strays them off the course; whether that is mentally or physically?

And then there is Karen.  Karen is miles and miles above the level of awe and respect for most people in my life.

Karen is the only person I know that has done a 50 miler (a true ultramarathon in my book).  She is married, has kids, and is not a 20something, not even a 30 something (I dont think ;o)...She is the finest Christian I know.  And she has only been running for about 4 years and has only done 1 marathon.  She has been 'training' for the run (race) of her life all of that time, and this past weekend she succeeded.  I would have given anything to have been there (but momma duty prevailed) and I even missed the weekend of her longest run for the same reason.  I was indeed sad about not being able to run with her for however long I could during both of those.

Anyway, you know I could go on and on about Karen and what she did this past weekend in the cold air and woods of East Texas.  Something that took her over 26 hours to complete, but with the guiding hand of God, she did it.

Here is her story:   Rocky Raccoon 100

I checked Facebook off and on and off and on and off and on all day Saturday, into the night for the updates from her husband and other friends that were accompanying her along her journey.  It wasnt until one friend of mine had posted a status early Sunday morning that I truly knew she had done it.  My comment to her was:  Does this mean what I think it means?

I started crying.  For someone the dream had been realized, and I felt like just a tiny part of it in some far off way...

Thank you Karen for the inspiration, not necessarily for the runner you are, but for the woman you are.

Let's Go to the Movies!

I think its a given that I consider myself a 'cinema-phile', and I go to the movies a lot.  Although I havent been in a couple of weeks just because nothing is out that I want to see that I havent already seen (although I would like to go see Black Swan again, just havent done it; maybe this coming weekend)...anywaaaaaaaaaaay...while the majority of the Superbowl commercials were lost on me (I dont eat Doritos, I dont drink gross Bud Light, and I am not in the market for a new car (all of these were just overexposed if you ask me), I did enjoy all the upcoming movie trailers!  Transformers, Thor, Captain America and last but not least the new Fast/Furious where they are bringing back Paul Walker and Vin Diesel!  Yes!  The sequels to the original were just blech.  While none of these are cinematic gold, I do enjoy these types of movies a lot.  The only one I was like 'huh?' on was the Steven Spielberg movie; something with an 8 in it.  I will have to wait and see more of that trailer before considering.  :)

Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut, then I find out the following:  First of all I am currently reading The Carrie Diaries (story of Carrie Bradshaw in high school pre-SATC/NYC days), and this morning I find out that a new movie Summer in the City is going to be made; about the Summer before Carrie becomes ... well ... Carrie.  The book I am reading now is already alluding to the days leading up to when she moves to the Big Apple, where already her dreams of being an aspiring writer in NYC is in full bloom in her mind and dreams.  Its also rumored Blake Lively would play the young Carrie Bradshaw.  While I dont watch Gossip Girl, I admit, Blake would be the obvious choice and perfect.

Then I also see that apparently another prequel is in the works that will chronicle how the Wizard of Oz became the Wizard of Oz.  Apparently RDJ was to play him, but has since dropped and now James Franco is on board.  I am not really a James Franco fan persay, but I do think he is attractive in some weird way, and after seeing him in bits and pieces of a Dateline special about the guy that 127 Hours was made about, well, lets just say I had some vivid dreams about Mr. Franco on Sunday night.  Now I loooooooooove WoO and read a few of the books that were 'prequels' and saw the Broadway show and all while in NYC, and I loooooooooooooooved it, but a movie solely about WoO?  I dont know...

I always love Spring/Summer because so many good movies come out!  Its looking to be the same this year!  Get your popcorn ready!!!!!!!!!!

Do you go to the movies a lot?  What movies are you looking forward to? 


I did get my 2nd run in yesterday afteroon.  I must admit, I had my doubts if I would actually do it.  It wasnt as windy as I thought it was going to be but it was still cold out (boooooooooo!) but at least there was sunshine.  I had read online yesterday about 2 a days and how they arent really recommended for the most part, recovery and stuff like that...more geared towards us mortals I guess; but I figured with just a month of it, and with minimal mileage each time ...anyway basically it says to take one of those runs easier than the other.  So not knowing how I was actually going to feel on the 2nd four miler of the day, I was going to wear the Garmin and do 7/1's.  Yeah, that didnt work out.  My dang watch wasnt charged even though I know I had charged it.  I think its about to crap out after almost 3 years.  I did get it charged up though once I got home, I just had to keep making sure it was securely on the cradle.  Thats the problem really I think, its not connecting to it without some effort and I have to keep checking it.  :O(

So that just means I ran the 4 miles easy and because I thought I was going to be using the Garmin for intervals I hadn't worn my music.  This probably ended up being a good thing because I tend to just normally run faster when donning the tunes.

I was actually surprised at how OK I felt after I got going.  I did take it easy but slowly started getting 'faster' without even realizing it and before I knew it I was less than a mile from home! 

I fully expected to feel like crap this morning, but nope.  All is well.  But glory be to God that my calendar only has HY on it for today.  Hot yoga.  Ah how I have missed you! 

And I will not miss not running today not one little bit :O)

Monday, February 7, 2011

May The Force Be With You

This was BY FAR my favorite commercial shown during the SuperBowl, but they chopped it down to seconds, when the full version is awwwwwwwwwwwwwesome!!  I had seen it prior to the actual game so I was very disappointed when I saw what they actually presented.

For some reason it wont let me embed the video, so here is the link for The Force.

What was your favorite?
Week 1 (January 10th) Weight Loss:  3 lbs
Week 2 (January 17th) Weight Loss: 2.51 lbs
Week 3 (January 24th)  No weigh in
Week 4 (January 31st)  1 lb gain.  Not surprised as this was day after a race/longer run (13.1 miles) and I generally tend to weigh a bit more due to extra fluid intake.  Plus it was T.O.M.
Week 5 (February 7)  No change.  Again not surprised as I ate a bit more (and later) than normal yesterday.  I plan on weighing again on Wednesday (maybe) to get a more accurate reading. 

I am not going to lie, this has me a bit peeved.  I feel and look smaller and I know that should count for something, but my tendencies have my mind needing the scale to move.  Hopefully this week.  If not, its time for another detox (next Mon-Wed) to get the ball rolling again.  I want to be at (or close to) pre-Chicago weight by TIR.

Did you overindulge for Superbowl?


I did not get up yesterday morning in time to run before I had to start caring for Mom, and by the time I got back to Houston, and did grocery shopping, I just wanted to chill before the game came on.  So I took yesterday off instead of the scheduled 4 miles I was going to do.  I hadnt had a day off since the Saturday before the half marathon, so I figure it was ok.  :O)

This morning, cold and windy again, but I got myself out the door for 4 miles before work.  This afternoon it will be another 4 miles in what they say is to be even windier conditions.  I pondered bringing my gym bag and just doing them on the treadmill, but eh, I just don't feel like doing the treadmill any more than I feel like I need to.  Plus its not like I am going to have a choice in the matter should unflattering weather pop up during the Texas Independence Relay.

Oh and I DID get out and run that little 3 miler later on in the afternoon on Saturday up at the fam's.  Was very windy, and I forgot about the little dips and hills out there.  I also made the mistake of running on what use to be such a quiet little FM (road).  Probably not my smartest move ever, but I didnt get hit by a car/truck so there was that :O)  So I ended up with 9 miles for the day on Saturday.  Legs felt a bit like lead but I think had it not been so windy and I hadnt been so worried about getting hit by a car, it wouldnt have been so bad :O)...I just had to run a bit faster and more effort than I really cared to.  :O)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

February Cooking 'Experiment' Uno

I love tofu.

I have been wanting to figure out how to cook it, and I ran across what seemed to be a pretty straightforward way to bake it up (to store in the fridge and use in other dishes) on Heather Eats Almond Butter's foodie blog.

Here is the link for her recipe:  Perfectly Baked Tofu

I was a little apprehensive but what is the worst thing that could happen?  It would taste like ca-ca or it would come up a mushy mess.

In Pictures

I don't know a thing about which tofu to buy at the store, but I knew to buy extra firm

After draining, you are supposed to put on something like a cheesecloth; nothing like a towel or washcloth, and since I dont have cheesecloth, I used one of my race tshirts :)  Hey, it worked.

Mix up all the goodies in the bowl and spray the baking pan with olive oil Pam; tofu still all nice, neat and tucked into the race tshirt; getting all the liquid out of it.

Spicy!  I added cayenne and pepper flakes

Slice the tofu up into 1 inch blocks

Coat/cover in the mixture

Arrange on baking pan and bake

So I am not a pretty cooker kind of person, but these turned out divine!!!

I used them the very next night on top of a yummy spinach salad, then some in with steamed veggies another night, and then again in another salad.  It keeps forever in the refrigerator!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The South Shall Rise Again!

We are thawing out!  This morning when I got up it was a balmy 31 deg!  Weeee!!  Suited up and headed out for a wonderful easy 6 miles before the rest of the city was stirring.  There were some icy patches along the way, but I ran much earlier than I did yesterday.  Once I got to Rice though, there was nothing; but that also means that the water fountains had been turned off.  Thankfully In Flight Running had a water stop around the loop (for some odd reason), so at least I was able to get a cup of water.  Not that it was hot, but my mouth/throat were very dry and I needed something.

I have a short 3 miler this afternoon just to get in a 2 a day in ramping up for the Texas Independence Relay in one short month.

Yesterday after noon I was going so stir crazy in the house, that I wandered out for a short 3 miler.  The city was shut down (we were covered in ice as we had freezing rain for several hours, but the snow never came) and originally our office was delaying opening until 10am but then eventually posted a message that we would have the whole day off.  It was 27deg when I went out, but it just felt good to GET out.  I even managed to get to the oil change place (that was open) and due to the weather I was pretty much the only one there.  Was glad to get that out of the way as I had been putting it off for like a month.

After returning from my run this morning I finally put the Garmin on the cradle and the splits from the AHM last weekend are finally downloaded.

Mile 1: 10:08
Mile 2: 10:04
Mile 3: 9:40
Mile 4: 9:57
Mile 5: 10:10
Mile 6: 9:53
Mile 7: 10:21
Mile 8: 10:15
Mile 9: 10:15
Mile 10: 10:10
Mile 11: 10:14
Mile 12: 10:29
Mile 13: 10:06
.26: 9:35

Overall I am pleased with these.  Considering the conditions and the unbelievable crowds I had to weave in and out of.  Again I am just thrilled about the fact that I held it together mentally through all of that.  That was my #1 goal.  Not to mentally 'check out'.  Obviously this is much slower than my last 3 half marathons (not counting the Sugarland debacle; not counting THAT one in the 3 :) but it is what it is. 

Now I am just trying to decide whether or not I want to do a half marathon at the end of March.  The one I wanted to do conflicts with a club/points race which is the day before.  I will make that decision this week at some point as the half I want to do usually sells out.

Have a great weekend!  I am just looking forward to the 60 degree weather we are supposed to get tomorrow!!!  I am so ready for winter to be O.V.E.R.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

My Day and Workout (Plan)

Cranky Pants because its not even snowing or sleeting or ANYTHING but yet YBC closed already because of inclement weather.  This means no hot yoga class tonight with Gayle.  Sad.  Face.

So in addition to that my legs (calves) really hurt and I am not supposed to run today anyway...soooooooooo...that means.....

I get to oogle and ahhh and pant and puff with my bestie girl crush Jillian...Cause she makes everything more fun!
So we'll do 30 minutes of yoga (which means a bazillion planks); just call me 'Plankasaurus' JunieB  :)
 And because 30 minutes isn't enough of a workout for me when I expected 90 minutes of sweaty sweat sweat torture, I am going to go all old school ... pullin' out the big guns...

A nice hour (or is 40 minutes; shit I cant remember anymore its been so long) of some good old fashioned TaeBo with Billy Blanks!!!  This should be fun!!!

Are you stuck inside or having to alter your work out today due to the extreme weather the country is having right now?

Texas As a Frozen Tundra? STOOPID.

This weather is really messing with my work outs!
I ended up back in the gym yesterday (with VERY sore calves I might add; so much so that I didnt even know if I was going to be able to run to begin with)
However, I started out with just walking for a few minutes, and slowly started cranking up the speed.
I managed 45 minutes which is really all I wanted so I felt good about that I did it with the soreness from the previous days leg beating I gave myself!
Then I hit up a few machines for some upper body work and called it a day.

Today is hot yoga day, but I fear due to the impending weather, they might close early!?!??!  I certainly  hope the precip holds off until after the 4:30 class!  Otherwise I guess I will have to do some DVD's unless I feel like its safe enough for me to get a run in outside (I didnt bring clothes for the gym; besides they would probably close early too if the weather even gets a bit bad)

Here is our weather for the next couple of days!  I gotta say to all you Northern'ers that read this and laugh, just know that this is SE Texas and we are not use to this kind of cold (no more than you can tolerate 100 deg temps with humidity in the 90's every single day for 4-5 months! etc.,  :O) therefore it creates havoc amongst the natives!!!  

They are also saying an accumulation of up to 1/2 inch of ice on top of the 1-3 inches of snow, which they say will indeed begin sticking immediately.
At least its probable I wont have to come in to work and I just hope that I can get a run in in the snow tomorrow (depending on the ice factor on the roads)
Stay warm and stay classy!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

F. U. Mother Nature and the Storm You Rode In On!

This morning when I woke up it was 70 deg at 6am.
By the time I went to work an hour and a half later it was 55.
Now its 6pm and its 32deg outside with a wind chill of 21.
Tomorrow morning the actual is supposed to be 22, with wind chills in the teens.

Um.  Yeah.  This is Houston, Texas!

And its supposed to be this way through Saturday with a 60% chance of SNOW Thursday night and Friday!


Needless to say I ran on the treadmill after work.  Just did 35 min easy then busted out a leg workout with a bit of upper body work (most back and biceps).  Something I havent done in quite some time.  I suspect sore legs tomorrow.

Yesterday I was off work, and hit up hot yoga noon class to stretch out the hams and the quads from the race on Sunday.  Was still a bit sore this morning which is why I opted not to run (in the warmth by the way), and skipped my normal hot yoga Tuesday afternoon class.

Since I have opted to do the Texas Independence Relay the weekend of March 4th, there really isnt much time to 'rest'.  I've got the training plan in place, so there will be some 2 a day runs, along with a couple of 3 runs within 36 hours to give me some sense of running on tired legs.  The only thing I wont be simulating is the sleep deprivation and the bad road trip food.  And the no showering thing.  Should be interesting but I am looking forward to it!

Now I have got to get this house warm somehow!!!

Is it cold where you are????