Tuesday Tidbits

  • I’ve always been a big Jennifer Aniston fan.  Last week I read that she adopted a pit bull mix from rescue, and now I love her even more.
  • I’m no foodie, and I have no intention of ever being a food blogger, but this was too good not to share.   I came across the latest Vegetarian Times at work a couple of weeks ago, and they had a delicious looking paella primavara on the front cover.  I came home and asked the Almighty Google for the recipe, and he found this for me:   http://epicureanvegan.com/2012/02/07/paella-primavera/  IT. WAS. DELICIOUS.
  • And you know what else is good?  THIS!
  • I’m gonna end out February about 6 miles shy of what would be on par for a 1,000-mile year.  Right on track!
  • I got my CSA signup form today!  Now I’m trying to find someone to go in and split a full share with me.  They don’t have a half share option, and even though I’m a vegetarian and eat the crap out of some produce, I don’t know if I can tackle a full share on my own.  Their signup sheet says it should provide produce for a family of four.  I may have to buy a deep freeze!
  • Everyone is sick around here!  The neighboring county schools are even closed because of the flu.  Praying I don’t catch it!  I’ve got too much running to do!  Half marathon #7 in 5 days!
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Three Things Thursday

1.   It is February 23rd, and as I type this I have the doors open enjoying the sunny 75-degree day.  That just ain’t right, man.  I love it, but it ain’t right.

2.   I’ve been doing a kick-ass job on my diet lately.  Not meaning that to say that I’m “on a diet,” but rather I’ve just been cleaning it up.  I’ve been making great strides toward veganism and cutting back on sugar and just all around making better choices.  Until today.  A coworker’s wife sent him to work with a big ol’ platter full of homemade doughnut holes.  Did you hear that?  Yeah, that was the sound of my diet being shot to hell.

3.   We got our taxes done Monday.  Monday was a GOOD DAY.

I don’t wear a lot of jewelry.  Always my wedding set and usually a pair of earrings, and if I’m dressed up maybe a right-hand ring too.  Necklaces?  Rarely.  But I’ve had my eye on one for a little while that I’ve really been wanting.  It’s at endureshop.com.  Specifically, this one:

I just love the simplicity of it.  The only problem is I’m way too cheap to spend $52 on a necklace.  I mean, come on, that’s a race fee!  Or a big chunk of a pair of shoes!
I mentioned my friend Shelly’s etsy shop before last year when I bought some earrings from her.  I knew she made custom necklaces, so I asked her if she could make one for me that just said “run”.  She was more than happy to do it!  She even made a few for me to pick from.
I chose the one on the lower left.  I received it in the mail on Monday, and I absolutely adore it!  I’ve worn it every day since.  You know you want one too.  What better way to fashionably show your pride in what we all love to do???

Good Things Come to Those Who Procrastinate

About a month ago, I finally made up my mind that I wanted to sign up for the Little Rock Half Marathon only to learn that it was already sold out.  When I informed my Mom’s BFF, who had already offered to put me up that weekend, that I wouldn’t be coming, she was all, “My husband’s company is a sponsor.  Do you want me to see if he can get you in?”  Ummm… YEAH!  Well, he put in an email or two, but the best he could do was get me on a waiting list.  I never expected to hear anything else about it.

And then Sunday night, I got an email telling me there was a spot open!  After a quick text to Mom, who in turn sent a quick text to her BFF to make sure we were still invited, it was on.  I sent my registration in and secured my spot on Monday.

As of right now, I’m not planning on racing it.  I’ll probably throw some race-pace miles in there, but it’s only two weeks before Shamrock, and that’s the one that I’m really focusing on.  Little Rock will just be the most expensive training run ever.

Part of me wishes I was trained to run a full.  For one reason only.  THE MEDAL.  I can’t believe the marathon finisher’s medal.

No idea who this chick is.  I swiped the photo from the Little Rock Marathon Facebook page just to show you the medal.

Does that make anyone else wanna yell “YEAH BOOOOOOOYYYYY!!!!!!” a la Flavor Flav?

Race Report: Cupid’s Chase 5K (A.K.A. The Unclaimable PR)

On Saturday morning, Community Options Inc.  hosted a Cupid’s Chase 5K.  It took place in 25 cities across the U.S. simultaneously.  One of those cities just happens to be about half an hour from here.  I participated last year and really enjoyed myself, so I decided to go back this year.

Gun time was to be at 10:00 am.  It was a gorgeous sunny day, but HOLY CRAP it was COLD!  The temperature at gun time was 23 with a “feels-like” of 8.  Now, the cold I can take like a champ, but when you add in the wind… well, that’s just a whole different story altogether.  And IT. WAS. WINDY.  Sustained winds 20-25 MPH with gusts even stronger.  When I woke up Saturday morning and saw just how windy it was, I seriously just didn’t even want to go.  If I hadn’t already dropped $35 on preregistration, I wouldn’t have.  That’s how much I hate wind.

But I sucked it up, dressed in my best cold gear, and headed out in plenty of time to pick up my packet before the race started.  One thing they did differently with the T-shirts this year was pretty cute.  When you preregistered, you could specify whether you wanted your shirt to say “Available” or “Unavailable.”  Since this was a Cupid’s Chase, I thought that was a really cute idea!

So, anyway, fastforwarding through a portapotty stop, small talk with other runners, the dude standing in front of me with nose hair that you could braid, and lots of standing around shivering, it was 10:00 and time to run.  I was SO ready to get moving!  So when they yelled GO, I went.  It felt so good to get moving and get some blood flowing!  I was clicking right along at what is ordinarily a fast pace for me, but it felt very comfortable so I went with it.  Actually, it felt a little TOO comfortable to be a race.  The wind was at my back for the majority of the first mile, and looking back now, I wish I had taken better advantage of that.

Mile 1 – 8:33

Most of the second mile was spent winding around roads in residential areas, and the wind didn’t seem to have much effect on us there.  It was mostly blocked by houses and trees.  What did become abundantly clear to me during this mile, though, is that I’ve slacked off on running hills lately.  This part of the course was the same as last year, but I just don’t remember the hills being as tough on me then as they were this year.   (I haven’t made the effort to do any hill training because my “A” race next month is flat.)

Mile 2 – 8:57

And then we headed back in the direction we came from.  So you remember that first mile when the wind was at our backs, right?  Well, it didn’t magically change directions.  We were now running dead into it.  Let me just tell you, it wiped me out.  I tried.  I tried SO hard to tough it out.  But at one point when I was giving it everything I had to give and looked down to see nearly a 10 minute pace, I got so disgusted that I walked.  Probably only for about 15-20 seconds, but I did.  I freaking walked.  I caught my breath while muttering obscenities under my breath and started running again.  I told myself to just hang in there and then kick it the last quarter mile.

Only I didn’t get that chance.  With 2.9 showing on my watch, I kicked it.  I SAW the finish line right up ahead and to the right, but I assumed we would run past and back to finish out the mileage.

NOPE.

They were directing runners to the finish right there.  I crossed with my watch reading 2.95.  It all happened so fast that I didn’t really know what to think.  I remember thinking that maybe my watch was off, but when I saw that the clock matched my watch, I knew it wasn’t.  I knew I didn’t just run a 5K in 26:31.  Or did I?  No, other runners with GPS watches confirmed that the course was short.  Everyone’s read 2.95-2.97.

Mile 2.95 – 9:31  (See, I told you.  I don’t do wind well AT ALL.)

I was so bummed.  I felt robbed!  I didn’t get my chance to sprint to the finish.  Not that it really would have mattered anyway.  It would have just made for a lower PR that I couldn’t claim.  I can’t rightfully say that my 5K PR is 26:31 because I still should have been running for another minute or so.  I KNOW it would have been a PR anyway (current PR 27:51), but what would it have been?  27:30?  35?  40?  I don’t know, and I don’t like that.

But oh well.  It is what it is.  As it stands now, I “officially” ran a 5K in 26:31, an 8:33 pace.  It just makes me want to work on speed all that much more.  I hate that my PR wasn’t earned.  I WILL earn that time though.  I will get a 26:30 5K now if it freaking kills me.

But you know what WAS earned?

Gotta love small races!  I took first place in the 30-34 age group!  (Please mind your manners and don’t ask how many people were in that division.  *coughcoughcoughsixcoughcoughcough*)

So the day turned out not to be a TOTAL loss.  🙂

Give Up the Ghost?

When I started running, I didn’t know what the hell I was doing.  (Well, actually, some days I feel like I still don’t, but that’s neither here nor there.)  When I bought my first pair of shoes, I went to Hibbett and bought the first pair I tried on and liked that were a decent price.  They were Nike Air Pegasus.  And I ended up in a podiatrist’s office with tendinitis in my foot.  That actually turned out to be partly because my hips were out of whack and causing a weird stride, but we couldn’t rule out the shoes contributing, too.

So then I went to a running store and was actually fitted for a pair of running shoes.  They did their thing and watched me do my thing and put me in Mizuno Wave Riders.  I thought those were gonna be The One because the foot pain was no more.  And then I started having knee pain and IT band issues.  Was it the shoes?  Maybe.  The training?  That’s a good possibility, too.  But I switched shoes anyway, just to see.  I changed over to the Brooks Ghost 4s.  While I did like the wider toe box better, I just didn’t LOVE the shoe.  I can’t put my finger on what I DIDN’T love about them, but I just didn’t.  After I had run in them for just a little bit I decided I would try another one next time.  But you know what?  They are nearing end-of-life, and I haven’t had any pain, injury, twinge, not even so much as a tickle the entire time.
So what’s a girl to do?  Stick with the Ghosts, which she admittedly doesn’t love but which her legs apparently do?  Or give up the Ghosts in search of The One?  I’ve been drooling over the new Ruby Red Mizuno Wave Rider 15s for a couple of months now.  I mean COME ON.  They’re RED.  But what if the IT band/knee problems from before actually WERE related to the shoe?  Ugggghhhh…
Ultimately fear got the best of me.  If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?  I’ve been making too much progress to piss it away and end up injured all because I wanted a pair of ruby red slippers.  
These will be here Tuesday.  They ain’t red, but I do love me some pink, too…

Three Things Thursday

1.   We woke up yesterday morning and had no water.    It worked just fine Tuesday night.  We both took showers, ran the dishwasher… but Wednesday morning I turned on the tap to brush my teeth and… trickle trickle.  D checked outside, and the ground around our well pump was saturated.  Not cool.  We killed it at the breaker box and called around and luckily found someone who could come right out.  It turned out not to be as detrimental to the checking account or the lawn as I feared.  The pump itself was okay.  The pipe that suspended the pump had broken.  They only had to dig that one little spot to replace that pipe, which goes into the ground vertically, so it’s only about a 2-ft diameter mess.  Inconvenient?  Yes.  Catastrophic?  No.

2.   I learned a valuable lesson last night.  Bottles of red wine do not have to be dropped from a great height to shatter on a tile floor.  And red wine WILL stain grout.

3.   Brainstorm!  If you can’t bring a TV to the bike, bring the bike to a TV.