Sunday, January 29, 2012

Wrapping up the "11 Things" Thing

In the name of playing fair I'm wrapping up the "tag" I got a few days ago by telling all of you 11 random facts about myself.

Does it go without saying that most facts about me are random, period?

1: After talking about my favorite TV shows yesterday I realized just how much I miss Lost! Man, that was such a great show. Even Lame-ass season 2 was better than almost anything on TV now. (sighs with nostalgia...) Am I the only one who feels this way?

2: Up is one of my favorite movies of all time. I made a critical error in watching it almost immediately after my Granparents passed last year which led to me hiding out in the bathroom leaking huge, copious tears. Sad. However! If you don't get wrapped up in the sad it's such a terrific movie- especially if you have a couple of chronically foolish dogs.

3: I absolutely HATE the word that describes something that is "not dry", starts with an M and ends with a IST. EKKKKKK. I ALSO can not stand the word commonly used to describe ladies undergarments, which starts with a P and ends with an IES.
Heaven help you if you choose to combine those words. My ears will literally bleed hate.

4: I was in the shower last night and I noticed how absurdly large my hip flexors are. I was like "well, hellooooooo." There are not many parts of my bod that I look at and think "well isn't that just super sized" so I was amused by this. Thank you running, you have given me haaaaa-youuuge legs.

5: It's really hard for me to find skinny jeans that are little and skinny enough. This pissed me off because (as discussed) mah legs are freaking huuuuuge. WTF skinny jeans?

6: I don't like country music. But that song by The Band Perry- "If I Die Young" was in my head ALL Summer. It made my heart ache and gave me legit sad feelings. Just like that new Lady Antebellum song that is playing all over everywhere- Just a kiss- or whatever makes my heart all warm and fuzzy. which, in turn, makes me what to get a grip... Sappy old woman.

7: I am too small to give blood but plenty big enough to ride Space Mt at Disney. Thank heavens...

8: I hate baby showers and Bridal showers. Equally.

9: I really like waking up to nice weather. I know that "everybody" likes this but it makes me really happy. Simple things for simple minds?

10: You know when you're running and you have that moment (or series of miles) when you are convinced that you could just run forever? I like that. I like that a lot. Makes me kind of giddy just thinking about it...

11: If you can make me laugh it is likely that we will be friends. If you make me laugh and bring me cookies and/or beer you're in for life.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Uh. Oh. The 11 things GOT me.

Awww shoot! I got tagged to do this "11 things" thing that has been sweeping the blogosphere like wildfire.
Thanks to:
Kristen @ Every day is Run Day!
Danielle @ Ohh breathe, just breathe!

Thanks a bunch ladies. I feel like I'm sitting at the cool kids table now...

Apparently There are RULES
Well. I'm going to break these rules... This little 11 questions thing-a-majig has BLOWN up on the interwebs and I don't think I know a single person who has not been tagged...
However, I'm going to be a good sport and at least answer the quesitons.
(I still owe 11 random facts, will make good on that ASAP!)

Here are the Questions from Ms. Danielle-1: what is your favorite blog(s) to read and why?
-I think I had better say Danielle's. I'm scared of what might happen if I say otherwise...

2. if you are a runner/swimmer/biker/all 3... whens your next race?
-RUNNER only. Half At The Hamptons on Feb 19

3. coffee or tea?
-Coffee. Coffeecoffeecoffee. I NEED IT.

4. what is your favorite recipe? (write it in here so we can all have it!)
- I'm not lying when I tell you to look on the back of the toll house chocolate chips. You need look no further...

5. what tv show do you never miss?
- It used to be Lost (sigh, miss it..) Big fan of How I Met Your Mother (Ted, WHO is the mother of your children??) Guilty pleasure shows like Family Guy, It's always Sunny and Entourage (oh God. I'm not very intellectual, am I?) Classics like Seinfeld (can't help it.)

6. what is the best book you've ever read?
-Oh MAN. That's a HARD one. Harry Potter. Hunger Games. Angelology (thought this was going to be crap- it was awesome.) Prodigal Summer. Girl In translation. So, so many more..

7. peanut butter... discuss.
-A food group in and of itself. Critical. Good on many things. Love.

8. if you could eat one thing for the rest of your life for all meals what would it be? (i like food, can you tell?)
-Um. Cookies and PB? And pickles? And a steak?

9. what article of clothing do you own that you would be devistated if you lost or it somehow got thrown out?
-my lulu shorts that were absurdely pricey and are insanely hotttt. Chase THAT, boys!

10. what kind of cell phone do you have?
-iphone, love it.

11. are you going to the movie theater on march 23rd???

And here are my Questions from Ms Kristen:1) Favorite kind of Girl Scout Cookie?

2) Flats or heels?
-Well. I'm 5'2" WITH shoes on so heels if I want to see above elbow height. BUT flats if I want to be happy.

3) What guilty pleasure website do you visit nearly every day?
-Facebook. Daily mile. MAN I'd have more time if I NEVER visited those sights!

4) Ice cream or frozen yogurt?
-Honestly I'm "ehhhh" on both. I just get them and coat them in candy- so I'd rather stick to the straight up candy!

5) Three things you would do if you won one million dollars in the lottery?
-I'd pay off my mortgage. My OTHER mortgage. My CAR. My credit card. Then I'd have like, $30 bucks left and I'd buy y'all a beer...

6) What's one hobby you never thought you would get into?
-HAH, running! Go figure...

7) Would you rather have a job you dislike that makes you a lot of money or a job you love that pays next to nothing?
-I currently have a terrible paying job that I LOVE. I am not sure that I would suggest this route to the Youth Of America...

8) Trails or roads?
-roads. I fall on trails and break my face.

9) What is your favorite race distance? Or, if you haven't sampled too many, what is your dream race distance?
-I like HM the best, by far, hands down.

10) What was your favorite subject in school and why?
-English, because it was easy for me and I'm a geek. :-)

11) Favorite non-sweating activity?
-eating and drinking beer. thinking profound thoughts. reading. catching up with friends. ALL AT ONCE so that I don't sound like a cheater!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Race Report! 16 miles in Derry, NH

Major delayed reaction on this race report from last Sunday.
I'm sad, I CAN NOT find my camera and a race report minus pics of me looking smokin' hot is like a fricking day without sunshine. Or oxygen.

I was nervous before this race. Like, really nervous.
I literally had to haul back and bitch slap myself into a better head space. (incorrect use of the word literally. but in my imagination it was oh-so real.)

By the time I had made the long treck to Derry I felt fine about things and was ready to run like normal people. If normal people were to run 16 miles over hill and dale that is...

It was COLD. Like, maybe 3 degrees at the start and I got that full-body seizure like shivering going on even though I headed for the start at the last possible second. Due to my late arrival at the start I was fairly well trapped up against what looked like a sea of backs and elbows (all I could see from my short vantage point...) I noticed that the road conditions were complete crap- lots of snow and slush, basically enough clear pavement to form a single file straight line on.

Y'all can imagine how the first few miles played out. Bumper to bumper traffic and no way around it. I made it thru the first mile in OVER 10:00 which filled me with horror, and fear that I would finish in 4:45:09. I managed to chill the heck out- mostly due to the fact that I feared that running like an idiot thru the slush for the first 5K would do nothing more than burn out my legs. I was spinning my tires like crazy as it was, very high output running for slow speed. SUCK-OH.

Around mile 4-ish the road opened up and cleared off. I was finally able to zone out into my happy running place and run normally for about 7 miles. I had warmed up, things felt good, I was congratulating myself for being fabulous in every way. Ahem.

I had been warned about the killer mile 11 hill and it was a bit of a monster. I had a little trouble breathing (thank you whooping cough for that chunk of scar tissue which impeded my wind on occasion. nice, really nice.) BUT I fought thru it and ran thru the HM split in 1:47 ish, not too shabby.

Sure, I could have done without those last 3 miles but it wasn't all bad! The crowd had really thinned out and for the first time all day I was able to avoid a constant flow of snot rockets, spit and other bodily fluids. Yuck. My feet hurt a little, and I was hungry. I had crammed a little bag of pretzles down my bra (handy place to carry things!) but couldn't be troubled to get them... I actually crammed quite a few things in with my boobs- pretzles, a few m&m's, cough drops, tissues- ALL this between my poor not-even A cup ta-tas! Go me! The poor girls got kinda scratched up from all that junk though so I may need to rethink this little arrangement?

Anwyay. I ran those last 3 miles like a boss because I was SO ready to be DONE. the left side of my head was all "NO problem rock star! Can't wait to do it again! Blah, blah, blahr-de-blahr..." The right side of my brain was more like "you are insane woman. and a jackass. get a normal hobby. you idiot." Conflicting emotions, per the norm.

My official time was 2:10:23. My GPS said that it was long- 16:2 miles, and that I ran it in 2:09:03 but whatever, it made no difference to me.

I did have fun (crazy old woman) It was long and hard (that's what SHE said) I could really feel the effects of the snow/slush covered road in my feel/ankles the next day but wasn't too terribly sore (thanks to my post race cwx tights frozen veg outfit, I'm sure!)

Little break now before hitting up the Half at the Hamptons in February... Phew!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

In which I show you how to dress for success!

It has been a hard week to stay at my fighting weight. Between the mileage, the snow shoveling and having a tiny nervous feeling about Sunday's race I was a bit off my food...
I tried to rectify this disaster by having a whole loaf of bread, freshly baked (NOT by me!) with beer and currants. Hot damn, if that wasn't fricking delicious!

It gets cold here sometimes and I work outside allllll day which is just fabulous when it is 10 degrees. So, I dress for success, as you can see in the picture below. Lookin' good, good lookin'!

I don't feel that the above photo does justice to what I have on. Here it is: hat, scarf, sexy socks. Three pairs of pants (three! for reeeelz!) thermal, fleece, vest. And a dirty pink coat which I put on post photo op. And no, I don't go commando in the barn but I'm not about to show y'all my knickers... Come on! Looks like I must carry around about 20 pounds of clothing!

Now that you are all jealous of me and my fan-tab-ulous outfits let's recap this week's running insanity.

I was trying to keep the mileage under control and was pretty successful. I WAS finding myself to be much more nervous about this 16 mile madness than I had anticipated. I pretty much had to haul back bitch slap myself in the face and get a grip. I mean, GAHD! What's the big deal here? I'm gonna be fine. What could happen?

My total mileage for the week was 20, all done in the confines of my basement on my new lovah, the dreadmill. GRRRR! Better than nothing fo' sho'!

So. By this time tomorrow I'll be all done with the madness and about to watch some serious football. I hope to finish feeling better than like SHIT and without falling down in the ice and snow, shattering my kneecaps and dreams!

Wish me luck friends, wish me luck....

Monday, January 16, 2012

Smutfest Recap

Bet you all thought I was still running since I'm so damn late with this recap! But no, I'm still here ready to fill you in on all the gory details paired up with some of the worst running pictures in history thanks to my Dad (who is usually quite a good photographer. We shall blame the camera, the odd light in the dome, or- more probably- the fact that I was so damn fast that the camera couldn't handle me. Yeah, that's it...)
Before we get into the wonderous world of photos here's the stark facts about this little sprint. I really loved running on the track- not gonna lie. The temp was perfect (although I was sweating like a pig. not that pigs can even sweat but STILL.) It was a novel concept to have no worries about potholes, ice, giant hills, 30 MPH winds, dinosaurs, rapists, 18 wheelers, rabid dogs- yeah- all those things that I try NOT to encounter. I ran at a pace that felt good and never got out of breath or pissed off. Usually there is a point in a Half when I'm just like "Dude... This feels like such a bucket of assholes..." and I never got to that point. And I did NOT throw up which was the highlight of the whole experience.
Anyway. On to the good stuff. Ahem.

We drove to Milford. It was 3 hours away, just like everything else in the world. My Dad decided to come which was good- we always have fun on roadtrips and have a lot of snacks. And my Dad pays for the tolls which is a perk. You can see a blurry little me in the above picture. I ran past my poor Dad 68 times (count em. sixty freaking EIGHT.) and I showboated every time. Are we surprised by this may I ask? Doubt it.... Oh, by the way? I'm not gonna apologize for my white pasty legs. Avert your eyes and remember that I live in Maine and do not tan.

It looks like I barely have any friends to run with but the truth is that it felt like a constant chase. Anddddd there is nothing I like better than the feeling of chasing down ill advised people who are slower than my sorry ass self. That dude in orange probably was up about 20 laps on me but we can pretend for a minute that I was about to soundly beat him. This, I believe, is in the last 10 laps when the FAST boys had gotten the hell off the track and it was just me, the slower dudes and the chicks.

Why am I fist pumping? Actually, the question is WHY am I running in the outside lane when there is NOBODY else around? DUH. SIGH. Hope I didn't do that too many other times like a big dumb dummy. But HEY- I was showing a little Jersey Shore style love to the finish because I was about to WIN!

OK. I can hear you all say "Yeah Right" but NO REALLY. I really did win. I know.... Gatorade called me IMMEDIATELY and offered to sponsor my fabulous self and insure my ghostly white legs. My fame has spread throughout the world like a highly contagious disease.

I won beer. I'd like to say.... A win is a win is a win. (and a PR is a PR is a PR.) In no way am I having delusions of grandeur here people, my time is NOT the kind of time that would hold up for better than one millionth place at a bigger race- but bottom line- I was the fastest girl out there on that day and that's that! 1:45:32. Best time for me by 8 whopping seconds (no hills!) I need to shave about 20 minutes off of that to run with the rest of y'all but (as they say in the sticks) IT AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN!

I do not lie when I say that the best part of the day was feeling quite well after the fact and not hurling on anyone or anything... Good times, good times. Oh. It was also nice winning beer. Have I ever mentioned that I like beer?

And now! Counting down to the VERY hilly and VERY cold 16 miler on Sunday. I'm not scared (yes I am...)

OH! A little PS: People have asked if it was boring and laborious running around the track and no, it was most certainly not. The time flew by, and since it was almost impossible to know what lap you were on all the time it wasn't like "oh there's mile one" then 40 hours later "there's mile two." It was shockingly easy, fast, and entertaining- who would have thought!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Countdown to Smutfest 2012

I continue to refer to tomorrows race as The Smutfest. I imagine that will earn me some interesting blog hits/google searches. Enjoy, creepers, enjoy!

Off I go tomorrow to run the 4PM heat of the Smutfest Indoor Half. Sounds intense, no? Should be an interesting time.

Did I manage to complete my Training Plan?

Did I have a Taper Tantrum? Phantom pains? Imaginary illness? (3 part answer)
-Ummmm. Not too badly to be honest. Better than last year.
-No phantom pains. A real pain when I hurt my hip on Monday (see more below)
-My throat felt crappy last weekend but I am suspicious that had something to do with the 7 mile tempo run in VERY cold weather. Death on Mt Everest, yo.

Am I freaking out?
-Unless you mean this: OMG! It might snow! I might not be able to get thurrrrr! It is going to be 59 degrees in that dome! I am going to die of heat stroke! My legs are so pale and hairy and I am gonna have to rock the short shorts! I am going to get so bored of track running! I am going to get LAST! AKKKK!
-So as you can see, no freak out happening here AT ALL.

What is my plan for this race?
This is a tricky one. I consider myself to be in the best running shape that I have ever been in. Come on over, challenge me to a race and I'll take you down (no. I won't... unless you are geriatric or only have one leg.) (I digress) On the 22nd I have a 16 mile race which is the most absurd thing I have ever signed up for in my life. I might have to find that sweep vehicle... BUT! With that in mind I do NOT feel that I can push the pace at ALL. I would like to finish in less than 2 hours and MORE than 1:50:00. I think that 1:55:00 would leave me with fresh legs for next week and the ability to drive myself home safely (and will emable me to hit the LAZY button- yay!)

What did you do to your hip, you idiot?
I developed a side stitch due to the fact that I had eaten almost an entire package of TJ's Gummy Tummy Penguins (not so good for MY tummy!) I lifted up my arm in a vain attempt to quell the pain and POP my hip tweaked. OUCH. 4 miles from the finish, I considered calling for a ride but decided to suck it up. Lots of ice, a quick massage, more ice and 24 hours later I could tell that all would be well.

Anyway. With 24 hours to go I am as ready as I can be and plan to rock the crap out of this insane indoor half. Good times people, good times...

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

What happened LAST week??

LAST week's PLAN!
How did it go?
One again- very freaking well thank you very much.
(logically, so many weeks of good running prompted me to start the countdown to wheels-fall-off-bus as I crash-and-burnnnnn...)

Sunday: The remarkably icy 12.1 miler. at an 8:29 pace which is just madness and insanity. One of those runs where I was like "I'm an olympian! I am ahmaaaaahhhhzing!" and all that bogus nonsence that evaporates when I watch Desiree Davila knock out a few 3 minute miles like it is nothing. (that woman is a demon but my money is still on Shalane, I'm a big fan.)

Monday- 6.2 recovery miles. A very good idea as this was the fastest "recovery" that I've ever had from a long run.

Tuesday- Ummm. 4 miles on the treadmill? I think so.

Wednesday- It was 18 degrees out which is cold. I ran 7 tempo miles shooting for an 8:10 pace and snagged an 8:03. Had a very slow first mile but that was the only mile that sucked the life out of me. Had some very, very fast miles (in that 7:30 range) up over hills and into a fierce and frigid headwind.

Thursday- Pretty sure I eeeeked out 4 on the treadmill on legs that had just about had enough fun for the week.

Final result- 33.3 miles. For some reason I think I have screwed this up and that I did one mile more but (as is very apparent) I can't completely remember what I did.

Stay tuned to see those infamous wheels fall off my infamous bus!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Round Two of WIN! FAIL! 2011

When being attacked with a large camera some people pose and try to look sultry. This is how I look (awesome. obvi!) This is also how I look when contemplating how I WIN! FAIL! at life.. Henceforth, this photo is going to get us started today with round two.
Let's talk about shoes. I have two pairs of Mizunos (I did indeed have problems with one shoe out of the 4, I attacked it with some kitchen scissors and BOOM that did the trick.) Anyway. I saw these hot red Mizunos and HAD. TO. HAVE. THEM. I mean, LOOK at them!! To make a long story short I hated them more that I have ever hated any other pair of shoes- including Kinvaras (which I abhore) so I sent them back. VERY SAD!!! WIN: shoes were freaking gorgeous. FAIL: They sucked.

These are the Mizunos that I love, love, love. WIN: I have one pair with over 800 miles that is still going strong. FAIL: You can't find this exact model anymore. even if you could I have it in my head to get pink shoes next. (winning!)

5K races. FAIL: PRing. It wasn't going to happen this year and it really pissed me off. My best time was 23:14 and my worst (well, we won't speak of that...) WIN? I bitch slapped myself and got a whole new attitude. Why do something that is your "hobby" and freaking hate it? After that revalation I ran a few fall 5K's and really enjoyed myself. Sometimes you just need to kick yourself in the britches. (one of the reasons that I was HATING 5K's- look at how alone I am in this picture? How is THAT fun? It is NOT because I'm winning. FAIL!!)

Half Marathon Madness. A definate example of Win/Failing.

Half #1: FAILED at completing a full training cycle. WON because I still did it and finished pretty fast (around 1:48 if I remember correctly) FAIL: Becasue at mile 6 I started hurting in my left groin/hip flexor and basically hobbled the second half. WIN: I finished.

Half #2: FAILED at competing a full training cycle AGAIN. WIN: A solid PR (1:45 and change I think...) FAILFAIL: Started to feel sick at mile 6, felt sick for the rest of the race and for hours after. WIN: realized that I just can't eat and run at the same time... FAIL: Was massively burned out post race and pretty much OVER it. Win: Legs felt fine this time.

Half #3: WIN: It was a helluva great time. FAIL!!! Ummmm. How to say this? I "tapered" for 5 months, went into the race with 7 miles being my longest run (in 5 months) snagged a SOLID PW- around 2:05 was my time, I was SICK (with a cold not belly issues, thank heavens!) Oh and FAIL: THE WEATHER! But also WIN- the weather was so bad that it was truly funny. WIN: I really had fun, go figure. That confirms that I am a nut case times 1,000. FAIL: BIG foot injury the next day- probably due to running 13.1 miles on weakass feet?

This picture gives thanks to my favorite post long run recovery beverage, BEER. YUM! WIN!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

2011 WIN/FAIL Part One

This (2011) was the year of many great things. Unlike 2010, which I couldn't WAIT to see go I have many fond feelings about 2011.
The odd thing was that in many of my running conquests I felt that I was walking the tedious and fine line between winning at life and accomplishing an epic fail!
Was I worried about this? Hells to the NO.
Did I think it was odd and worth a blog commentary? Well, clearly....
This will be a multi part series but let's get started, shall we?

My Fashion: WIN because I have yet to be run over on the road or raped by nameless strangers in a windowless van. FAIL because unless you're blind you can't help but notice how truly heinous most of my outfits are.

Running with friends. WIN because it's WAY more fun to hang with a bud both before and after a race. FAIL because inevitable somebody is going to wish to go faster or slower, it is easy to loose people in a crowd and that causes mental anguish and frustration.

Overall though, I'd say my foray into the world of running with friends still ends up with a clear WIN because it added a different element to the race experience.

Summer Running: Win: Ummmm. FAIL: Because I rarely do it, a 9 mile week is "high" mileage, I hate the humidity, the bugs, the traffic, the sweat; I run gadgetless and trick myself into thinking I'm running a 7 minute mile which is actually a 27 minute mile, it is impossible to stay hydrated if you plan to run longer than 0.3 miles (and the list goes on and on.) Win: Oddly, some of my better 5K times come on those well rested summer legs.

Winter running: WIN: I prefer the frigid temps, I have more time, I get to wear awesome rocking socks, I actually CAN run faster since it is not 99% humid, I scamper off to run races that last 48 hours, It is fully possible to stay hydrated most of the time, arm socks are the fashion statement that we have all been wishing for! FAIL: Well, see all of the above. Plus the fact that if it snows on race day I'm out $50 and that sucks!

Join me tomorrow for episode TWO of Win/Fail and see what I have to say about Half Marathons, 5K races, PR vs PW, shoes and fabulocity in general!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Daily mile madness. Countdown to 16 miler madness.

Oh man..... I have jumped on the Daily Mile bandwagon 1,324 years late.
Please friend me! Kinda lonely out there right now...
My Daily Mile

So. Last week's PLAN called for not much of anything and that's exactly what happened. I had 10 cousins up to visit for the better part of the week, some VERY icky weather and (to be honest) I knew that at this point in my training cycle a light week would be awesome-o.

Sunday- 3 crappy treadmill miles. The Dreadmill and I have not yet become pals...

Monday- 8.1 miles at 8:41. The road was all covered with snow so that wasn't easy but it was fun.

ANNNNNNNNND... Saturday! 4 Dreadmill miles which were not bad at all due to True Blood Season 3 Episode 1. Thank you very much....

So far this week I have pounded out 12.1 at an 8:30 pace. MUCH faster than I had planned on going but my legs were in GREAT shape thanks to lazy week so it was excellent. The road was SUPER icy, it was warm (41... so odd!) I did hills, dirt roads, you name it it was there to kick my ass. At mile 8 there was a car accident (nobody was hurt, thank heavens) but I stopped for a few to chat up my hay guy who was all firemanned out on the fricking street corner. Gotta love my town and my friends! It was a touch hard to get back into the swing of things but I did. (I had been running at an 8:20 pace- so as you can see I slowed down.) Regardless. I was glad to not suffer any bodily harm on this run and except for the last mile which was intensely zombie like I felt just fine.

Yesterday, knowing that we were about to head into some crap cold weather I snuck out for a 6.2 mile recovery run at the arduous recovery pace of 9:13. I had planned on 9:30-9:45 so, as you can see, I clearly rocked this out. URGH!!

Next week I start a semi-taper leading up to my indoor half on the 14th. Looking forward to booking it around a track 66 times! No idea how that's going to work out for me but my goal is to NOT. PUSH. IT!!!! I have a week to recover after that before I hit the hills of NH for a brutal 16 miler. Again, not so sure how that is going to work out but what could happen? It will be fine and a solid adventure.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year!

Last week was light on running heavy on fun. I think 16 miles was the grand total but I'll check up on that later for my official weekly PLAN update!
My cousins came to visit and they are awesome. It runs in the family.

We went snowtubing because that's what adults do!

Can you tell that we are related? That's my cousin, the pirate.

Ringing in the New Year, pirate style with my sister. Yes, we must be related too!