Here a PR, there a PR…

I’m just PRing all over the damn place lately, and I gotta tell ya–I LURVES IT!

I had another race this morning. This one was a four-miler benefitting the Lion’s Club. It was a two-mile out-and-back from the high school on fairly flat roads, so I was hoping I’d be able to maintain <10 min/mile again, and I totally did. Garmin time was 39:13. 🙂 When I handed in my card I looked at the winner board and saw that the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places in the female 30-34 bracket were already occupied by other runners’ cards, so I didn’t hang around for the awards. (If I didn’t get one, who gives a shiz?!)

I downed a bottle of water, made use of the high school’s facilities, and headed back out. I needed to get in 6 more miles today to stay on track with my training schedule. The Country Music Marathon & 1/2 in Nashville is coming up in less than a month, so I want to make sure I’m getting all my miles in! And even after pushing myself pretty hard this morning I STILL PR’d the next six, too! Only by like a minute and a half, but still! I knew I was already pretty tired from the first four, so I never dreamed I’d have it in me to hang in at a decent pace for another six. But I surprised myself yet again.

I don’t know where these times are coming from, but I hope they keep coming!

Advertisements

By Land and By Air

Running and flying. That’s what’s on my mind today.

I ran in a 5K this morning benefiting one of the local high schools’ track team. It was a very small race. I think most of the participants were the track team members and their parents. Knowing that this was probably going to be the case, I was SINCERELY hoping that there would be no more than 3 people in my age group so I could bring home some bling. Alas, that did not come to pass. Some of the parents of the high school students were IN my age group. Now that I have to check the box that says 30-34 instead of the box that says 25-29, I’m grouped with people that are actually old enough to have teenagers. (They start breeding young in these small towns.) But bling or no bling, I set a new PR and FINALLY got that <30 5K that I’ve been dreaming about! My time was 29:27–a 9:29 pace. Never thought I’d see the day…

My training schedule called for a 9-mile run this weekend. I had to do a little schedule shifting and rule bending for this one. It’s supposed to start raining tonight and rain all day tomorrow. I don’t mind running in the rain. Did it last week. But not the kind of rain we’ve got coming. Hard rain with thunderstorms here and there? No thanks. I’ll pass. So no long run on Sunday. And I knew I wouldn’t have another 9 left in me after running the 3.1 this morning. So I did what any excuse-making easy-way-out-searching girl would do. I counted that 3.1 TOWARD my 9. When I got home I headed out for another 6. I was exhausted. My body isn’t used to running a 9:30 pace, so I took these 6 pretty easy today. Kept the pace around 10:30 for the first 4 miles then took a one-minute walk break, jogged to 5.5 then walked the last 0.5 home.

As for the flying… the plane tickets are booked! THAT took a good little chunk of change out of the ol’ checking account. We had been watching the prices hoping that they would go down, but they haven’t budged. And with the “experts” predicting that gas will be going back up this summer, we were hesitant to wait any longer in fear of the fare going even higher. So everything is set! Now I’ve just gotta wait for it to get here!

It’s gonna be a looooooong couple of months.

No Paparazzi Here

This has been the dullest, most boring, least interesting week EVER. No blogworthy events whatsoever. But guess what! You get a post anyway. Just so you don’t forget I exist!

I did run eight miles again Sunday. My training schedule called for a 10K, but there weren’t any around, so I just repeated the previous week. Nothing spectacular. Different route, more hills, and a minute and a half faster.

This pretty much sums up the rest of my week: Wake up. Go to work. Come home. Do laundry. Clean house. Cook supper. American Idol. Then there was a bonus yesterday. I did poop patrol in the back yard where the dogs go out.

Please. Try to contain your excitement. I know it’s glamourous, but the flash bulbs hurt my eyes.

There was a little bit of an upswing yesterday though. After Sunday’s run, my legs were pretty spent from the hills, so I didn’t run Monday or Tuesday. I laced up yesterday after work and went out for 4.5 miles. Now, in case you have forgotten, I’m slow. My goal has been 10 min/mile, and I’ve been inching closer and closer. I came so close yesterday I could smell it. I finished 4.5 miles in 45:40. So. Damn. Close.

Then I came home and got in the tanning bed. That REALLY put me in vacation mode. I’m funny like that. I can KNOW we’re going on a trip, but I never really get excited about it until I start physically doing something to prepare for it–like tanning for instance! It’s like it makes it official or something.

“Okay, it’s official! Pam’s tanning! Buy the plane tickets!”

The Suckage

Every job comes with responsibilities you may not like. I encountered the worst part of mine yesterday. I had to let someone go. I’ve been struggling with it for a long time, knowing that something was going to have to be done but not wanting to do it. Honestly, as bad as it sounds, I have been putting it off on the chance that I DIDN’T get that job. Then it would be someone else’s problem. But I got the job, so I had to be the bad guy.

I’ve given this cat every chance to straighten up. I’ve talked to him countless times about his job performance. There were times I thought things were getting better, but then he would always revert back to his old ways. He’d been with us for a year, and as I told him yesterday, he was no farther along one year into his employment than he was at one month, and that if things were going to get any better, they would have by now. I did everything I knew to do to try to keep it from coming to this. I’ve trained and written out S.O.P.’s and given one-on-one job instruction, and I have asked him what else we could do to help. I’ve gone in on my days off to work with him. I’ve put more effort into him than most people ever would have. It seems he knew what was supposed to be done, but he just chose not to put the necessary effort into it. I’ve taken complaints from customers and from his coworkers, and I just couldn’t put it off any longer. I couldn’t rightfully hold my other employees accountable if I continued to make exceptions and excuses for this guy.

So I did it, it’s done, and there’s no going back. It sucked, but it was the right thing to do, and sometimes things just suck.

And this really sucked.

10 Random Things

With no prompting by me WHATSOEVER, Adam from I am Boring tagged me to do a 10 Random Things Post!

Without further adu…

1 – I was a band dork in high school. I played the clarinet, and I was darn good at it. I came in my freshman year and beat a senior for first chair. She challenged me for chair placement, and I beat that ass again! I also took up the sax my senior year and joined the jazz band. I wish I had done it earlier. And I wish I still played. I haven’t touched a musical instrument (except for a plastic guitar with five colored buttons) in ten years or so.

2 – I have never interviewed for a position and NOT gotten the job. My jobs have included video store clerk (at my parents’ video store when I was a kid), car hop, bank teller, medical transcriptionist, Postal clerk, Postal supervisor, and now Postmaster.

3 – For years I wanted a Corvette. I bought one last summer. It’s freakin’ sweet. It’s been fun, but now I want to sell it and get an SUV. Maybe an H3? It’s hard to haul around two dogs in a ‘vette. And my husband also drives a regular cab truck, so it only seats two people also. If we ever go anywhere with anyone, we have to ask them to drive or just meet them somewhere. I WISH I could afford to keep the ‘vette AND buy an SUV, but that’s not an option right now. So the car is for sale! Interested? (I’m including a photo so you know exactly which car to steal from the Tractor Supply.)

4 – I have one tattoo and want another one. The one I have is a bouquet of blue daisies on my lower back. The one I want is a yin-yang sign with a hand print on one side and a paw print on the other side.

5 – I love rock music. Looooooooooove it. I subscribe to Sirius/XM radio, and it doesn’t budge from the Octane 20 station. My sister and I have concert tickets to see Three Days Grace, Chevelle, and Adelita’s Way next month.

6 – I am perpetually cold. Unless I’m outside in the 90-degree sunshine, I’m cold. (Unless I’m running, of course.) It’s 70 degrees in here right now and I have on a fleece jacket. My nose is cold, and I just blew on my fingers to warm them up. I ALWAYS take a jacket into a restaurant, theater, etc., with me, even in the summer, so everyone doesn’t have to listen to me bitch about the air conditioner. (Seriously, WHY do they keep it SO COLD in there?!?!?!)

7 – I still don’t know if I want kids. I thought that some sort of maternal instinct or something would have kicked in by now, but it hasn’t, and I’m wondering if it ever will. I still really don’t even like kids. It’s weird because I’m such a good dog/cat mom. But kids? Ew.

8 – I have depressingly few friends. Not facebook friends–REAL FRIENDS. Part of my reason for questioning whether or not I want kids is that I have seen what it has done to the lives of the people that I used to consider my friends. The people I used to be close with are now acquaintences at best because they don’t have time for anything other than dirty diapers and teeball practice. It has literally been years since the last time my phone rang and it was a friend calling to chat. It’s like once they had kids they forgot about who they were before that and forgot the people that were at one time a big part of their lives. I know lots of people and have lots of acquaintences, but as far as having that friend I can call on Saturday and say, “Hey, let’s go to Nashville today!”… nope. Not anymore.

9 – My husband and I got married in the Virgin Islands. We had both had big church weddings with our NOT-so-happily-ever-afters, and neither of us wanted to do that again. We wanted something small and intimate, so we got married at sunset on Magen’s Beach in St. Thomas. Just us, the preacher, and the photographers. It was so very special, and those memories will last me a lifetime. And if I ever have amnesia, I have some beautiful pictures to look at.

10 – I am a cry baby. Jesus, I just teared up typing out #8 up there. I don’t mean the kind of cry baby that gets her feelings hurt easily or pouts when she doesn’t get her way. I cry when I’m feeling sentimental. Or happy or sad. Or if I’m really pissed off. Or if I’m watching a sad movie. I’ve even been known to cry at commercials. (You know the ASPCA commercials with the Sarah McLaughlin and Willie Nelson songs? Yep. They get me every time.)

So there you go! Ten completely random little tidbits of information about what makes Pam!

GW,MA!6.66M Race Report

For any of you who missed it, Razz at Running off at the Mind, in his infinite geniusness geniusosity smartness, is hosting the best race EVER. The virtual kind. The kind that doesn’t require getting up at the buttcrack of dawn and driving longer than it takes to run the damn race. The kind with no entrance fee. The kind that you don’t even have to run all at once if you don’t want to! (See? I told you it was good.)

So THIS is my Global Warming, My Ass! 6.66 Mile Run race report. Actually, mine was an 8-mile run. What can I say? I’m just awesome like that. But for the purposes of this post, we’ll just talk about the first 6.66 miles.

It was a Sunday. The sun was shining, the birds were chirping, and you could feel spring in the air. Now, the whole purpose of this race was to give a giant collective “EFF YOU!” to Mother Nature for the winter she put us all through, but you know what? This Sunday, Mother Nature was pretty freakin’ sweet. It’s hard to stay mad at the ol’ girl when it’s 60 degrees and sunny with a pleasant light wind. Well, pleasant MOST of the time. There were times it was more gusty and annoying.

There really wasn’t anything outstanding about the run to report, once I finally got started. I had every intention of getting an earlier start on this one, but by the time I got ready to leave the house it was already pushing noon. Then I turned on my Garmin and it didn’t waste a second telling me that my batteries were low. Shit. So I threw it on the charger and started another load of laundry. Fast forward approximately an hour. I strap on a partially charged Garmin, lace up my new Mizuno Wave Rider 13s (their maiden voyage), clip on an iPod full of Chevelle, and drive into town. I parked at the Tractor Supply and successfully ignored the pleas of the Girl Scouts to buy their evil cookies. And off I go!

Most of you won’t get anything out of the route details, but I’m including landmarks for some of my local readers that are familiar with my town. For those of you that aren’t familiar with it, this should give you just enough information to know where to come stalk me, kidnap me, and steal my car.

Mile 1 – 10:48. On the sidewalk into town, left at the nursery onto Memorial, past the Maverick gas station, the storage building place, the vet’s office, the chiropractor, the Movie Center, the church, and Walgreen’s and left onto Hwy 77. Not exactly a scenic route, but it’s a nice change.

Mile 2 – 21:34. Past Walmart, the print shop, a factory, and a day care. Sidewalk ends. Running in the road facing traffic now. Not much of a shoulder to run on, so I have to jump the curb and run in the grass at times when traffic won’t allow for the oncoming cars to move over. Note to self: This road would probably be fine for early morning runs, but not such a great one for midafternoon weekend runs.

Mile 3 – 32:38. More open road here on the bypass. Good wide shoulder to run on. Running into a pretty strong headwind here though. The bypass takes me back to the highway that Tractor Supply is on. I’m making my loop.

Mile 4 – 44:28. I feel really good, but I stop by the car when I pass to grab a couple swigs of Gatorade because I know I’ve still got several miles to go and it’s only gonna get hotter. I turn left onto Memorial again, but instead of going straight, I turn right at the Chevy dealership onto Volunteer Dr, a hot spot for walkers, runners, and people who want to let their dog poop in someone else’s yard.

Mile 5 – 55:26. Through the city park. Holy crap, I haven’t seen this many people all winter long!!! The sunshine is bringin’ ’em out of the woodwork! Make one lap around the 0.75-mile track and head back out onto Volunteer.

Mile 6 – 1:07:42. Continue on Volunteer for just a short bit then turn at Fred’s Dollar Store onto Jim Adams Dr. past the urgent care clinic, some financial building, and the movie theater. Pretty tired by this point.

Mile 6.66 – 1:15:12. I finish up my virtual race by turning left onto Mineral Wells. THE busiest street in town. The name might be different, but every city in the U.S. with a population of more than 2 has this street. You know, the one with McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Burger King.

So there you have it. My GW,MY!6.66 mile race report and my tour de Paris. Just to finish the story, I went on to finish my run past Lowe’s and back past the Movie Center and chiropractor, etc., and wound up back at my car, right where I had left it eight miles and 1:31:02 earlier.

I’ll take my last-place prize now, please.

(Oh, and BTW, I really liked the new Mizunos. I didn’t have any of the post-run foot pain! They did, however, rub my pinkie toes. Not to the point of blisters. Just a little pink and raw. Nothin to make a fuss over.)

Name that Dog!

I introduced you to Charley a couple of days ago, and now we need your help making a decision!

We didn’t name him that. That was what his foster mom had named him. But she didn’t totally come up with it on her own either. Before the rescue place had him, he was in a kill shelter. He was brought in as an owner-surrender, and this owner had been calling him Harley. Foster mom didn’t like this name, but since he already answered to it, she stuck with something similar: Charley.

Hubby had a dog named Charlie when he was younger and really doesn’t want to call him that. Sentimental reasons and such. Neither of us are just over-the-top happy about Harley either. But since he already knows it, we feel like we should stick with it or something phonetically similar. Marley? No. (Think “Marley & Me”) Barley? Nah. Farley? Hmmm…I dunno. I couldn’t stand Chris Farley. Carly? No, he’s a boy.

So what do y’all think? Share your brilliant ideas!

Lucky Number 7?

I have had a love/hate relationship with running for the past couple of weeks. Five-miler in New Johnsonville: hate. New three-mile PR: love. Attempted 3 miles on a treadmill: HATE. A completely kick-ass seven-mile run Sunday: LOVE!!! I’ve only run that distance one other time, and that was last fall when I was training for my first half mary. I finished my seven Sunday 10 minutes and 19 seconds faster than I did just a few months ago! So I guess the truth is in the numbers, folks. I may feel like I’m not getting anywhere, but apparently I am. My goal all along has been to finish my half in April 1 mile/min faster than I did in November, so 13 minutes faster. I gained almost that much time in only a little over half of the distance!!! It looks like I may need to up my goal a little bit.

Unless…

Was it just a total fluke? Was it luck of the Sevens? It sure felt like the stars were aligned in my favor. The weather was perfect. Seriously. PERFECT! I’m talking the shorts-and-long-sleeves kind of perfect. I’d had a great night’s sleep the night before. I was on a new route, so the change of scenery made the time fly by. Plain and simple, it was just a good run.

I’m on for eight this weekend. I can’t wait!

BUT FIRST!

I think I need to be making a trip to Nashville for some new shoes Saturday. I’m feeling the slightest twinge of pain in my right foot. The same pain that I had during my training last year that turned out to be tendonitis. It was nothing serious, really. Just aggravating as hell. It completely subsided with two weeks of no running. I’ve never had an actual fitting done at an actual running store, and I think it’s time.

So I’ve encountered runner’s gut, I’m looking forward to long(er) runs, and I’m fixing to drive two hours to have someone analyze my foot and my gait. Am I an official runner now?