You're in mile 18 and all you have to do is get to the next water station. Up ahead you see them. The group of happy cheering volunteers handing out half-filled paper cups of water. Only a few more steps and aawwhh! You're there! Take a break! Walk a few minutes! And enjoy the sights and sounds. You deserve it!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Last Five Months in Pictures!

Well I didn't fall off the face of the earth, I just got wrapped up in my new puppy and relaxing so I took a break from blogging. It had somewhat consumed a lot of my time and I needed to enjoy raising my new Rottie, Summer. I didn't figure everyone wanted to hear about her and not about running.

I do, however, want to show everyone (who cares) how Summer has progressed and grown over the last 5 months.  She's now 7 months old and weighs over 50 pounds. Enjoy!

I have signed up for my next big race and will be blogging about it.  I did want to do a fundraiser for this race and will be creating a new webpage for it.  I'll keep everyone informed on when I kick things off.  For now, it's training time for the Flying Pig !

Friday, October 15, 2010

Only Doing the Half!

It took a lot of going back and forth on this and I'm just not in it this time.  My feet feel fine, but my mind just isn't in it.  Maybe it's just taper jitters.  Maybe I'm scared.  Maybe a cute friend from high school is in town and I'd much rather hang out with him.  (I'd go with the last one!)  I really just want to have fun.  After everything I've been through, I deserve a little hooting and hollering!  Race recap to follow.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Reflections - 15 Weeks of...Miles!

I'm enjoying a peaceful night at home.  My last Friday night before the team I've been training with has their last Saturday morning run.  I've been reflecting on the last 15 weeks and I can honestly say that I'm satisfied with my training this time around.  This will be my 5th marathon, but my first without ending up in PT.  Yes, I have foot issues right now, but nothing compared to the things I've dealt with before.  Last year, I had hip issues and was still able to run three marathons.  The year before I couldn't even run because I had ITB and runner's knee.  Only one marathon that year - my first!  So I'm feeling pretty good with only having orthotics this year.  After looking over all of my shoes, it looks like I've needed them for years. 

Also, considering the things I've been through this year, I'm surprised I've even made it this far.  My first training run was while my entire family was out here on vacation and it wasn't pretty.  I had every intention to make this my best race, but my Rottie's cancer came back and the disease took her too early for everyone.  It was hard for me, but I still made it to the training run that week.  [Side note:  I was also going to grad school during all this.]  Enter new puppy and lack of sleep.  The one thing I'm disappointed with is my weight.  I really wanted to lose some weight, but instead, I gained.  Can't ask for everything.  I can start on that after the race.  Perfect time for it. 

A week from Sunday is the big day - Denver RnR baby.  I know I can do it.  My legs have put in my miles.  I've felt the pain.  It's my day!  Hope to see you there!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Big Run in the A.M. So...

Mommy I'm all dressed and ready for our run together! 
(sometimes you just need some humor during those tense moments)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Custom Kentucky Cow Bells - Bell Outlet

Custom Kentucky Cow Bells - Bell Outlet
Bell Outlet is owned & operated by Red Hill General Store, Inc. We have been in business since 1998. Our offices & warehouse are located in Hillsville, Virginia in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Southwest Virginia. Customer service and satisfaction are the cornerstones of our business and we pride ourselves on a superior level of customer service & satisfaction. We offer quick turnaround of in-stock items and all of our products are first quality and factory new; we do not sell seconds or damaged products. Bell Outlet makes ordering via the Internet safe, private and secure.

Why does doing the right thing feel so wrong?

So it's almost 8 a.m. and I'm not lined up for my half marathon.  Last night over some Ben & Jerry's FroYo, I decided not to go.  My foot feels better and I know I could do the race, but would I be able to do the Denver Marathon afterwards is the bigger question.  So this morning I'm spending some quality time with my puppy and then later today I might try to get a few miles in.  Orthotics appt. tomorrow.

Since I'm not running, I provide this for your enjoyment - my 4 month old Rottie:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Caught in the Nick of Time?!?!?

Pain where the circle is...only when I walked or ran.
 Since my 18 miler on Saturday, I've had pain on the top of my right foot. It felt like I had my shoes tied too tight during the run. Unfortunately, the pain didn't go away. Even after the Race for the Cure on Sunday, it still didn't feel right. But like most runner's training for a big race, I didn't want to admit there was something wrong. I rested on Monday, but went on with my training Tuesday. I started icing my foot in the evenings; trying anything to put off going to the doctor. My new shoes arrived on Wednesday so I had to try them out. Only 3 miles though. Loved the new Asics GEL - Nimbus 12's (fantastic cushion). On the fence about the Saucony ProGrid Kinvara's (great lightweight shoe). This morning I realized that my right foot was actually swollen. So as soon as I got to work, I got an appointment with my primary physician. He was worried that it was a stress fracture so he called in an appointment with a podiatrist. So I left there to go over to that appointment. I sat waiting over an hour. You can only imagine how that felt and the emotions I was going through. I got my x-rays and in with the doctor. She explained it like this (my memory isn't that great so I may be off a little): my big toe is locked - something seen in arthritis patients - I'm using my other toes to compensate for it - there's a build up on my 2nd thru 4th toes to handle the weight - no stress fracture but if not fixed now it will happen. So she tapped my feet to see if custom orthotics will help. I have to wear the tape for three days (four if I decide to run my half marathon on Sunday) to see if the inserts will help my feet during walking/running. Showering should be fun!

I'm just glad it's not a stress fracture. Whew!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Embrace Your Inner Turtle!

A bloggy friend of mine - MJ - posted a topic I've been mulling over for almost 3 weeks now.  It's about being S-L-O-W!  I started running back in 2007 and I've gotten a little faster over the years - up from a 15 m/m to 11 or 12 m/m.  But I'm still not satisfied.  I want to be that girl who makes running look effortless, not the penguin with a stride of 6-10 inches.  I just don't know if I'm ever going to get there.  That's what is discouraging. 

This is what I wrote on her blog in response to her post:

We must be on the same wavelength. I've been thinking something similar. I wonder what the fast runners think when the see me out there chugging along. Do they see me "and my shadow" (my toochas) puffing along and think "look at the fat chick trying to run"? Do they feel pitty for me and my "efforts"? Are they wishing I'd give it up and clear out of their way?

Sometimes I get so upset with myself wondering "what the heck am I doing out here" since I'm not getting any faster. Other times I just want to scream at them "how many miles are you running today? I'm doing 18!" And I'm going to be out here for 4 hours! That was yesterday.

Then I do a run like today and I see these ladies who've battled breast cancer & won. And I remember all of the people who can't run. Like those who lost their live in 9/11. I figure I may be slow, but I'm out here. Running for them and others going through similar situations. Mile 1 for my BFF's mom would lost her battle with breast cancer, mile 2 for my friend fighting MS, mile 3 for my grandma who's 90, mile 4...a mile for each of them.

I hope it helps you and others.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5K Colorado Springs

Course Elevation
Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure - Colorado Springs, CO

Set up & Pikes Peak
Garden of the Gods

Everyone lining up for the race

Two minutes to starting time

Second hill in the park

Another hill - oh water station!
Downhills - YEAH!

Cheer squad on the last hill leaving the park
Downhill towards the starting line - & FINISH LINE!
All done and it was so much fun!  36:06 timed on my Garmin

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Denver's SkirtChaser 5K Race - Volunteering Recap

This has to be the most fun race I have ever ran (last year) so this year I decided to volunteer helping out Beth @ ShutUp&Run! She's such a hoot on her blog and is more of a pack of dynamite in person. She was running around all afternoon like a chicken with her head cut off. I was lucky to catch her standing still for a moment before the race to catch a photo op.   If she wasn't such a "badass", she'd be one of those "skinny blankity-blanks" that I'd be afraid to hug in fear I'd break her.  I can see how she was able to run 20+ with Dean.  She's fast and fit!  I volunteered in two shifts - one as a course pointer and the second helping out with the beer tent.  I had the great pleasure of working with Beth's husband under the beer tent.  Hopefully she kicked his butt for the treasure hunt he put us through looking  for his wedding ring - in the bottom of the ICE BIN!

The weather looked like it wasn't going to play along.  The wind was making every effort to have the tents go airborne.  Some of the voluteers were helping racers while holding down the tents.  What a mess!  But lady luck offered up a nice breeze instead up rainy muck.  It was sunny and hot for the race start.  I was trying to get rid of the nice capri tan I'd gotten earlier in the day during my group training run - 17 miles!  Lots of coffee and energy drinks got me through the day!

As for volunteering, I was set up to be a pointer at the best spot on the course - the Start/Finish!  So I was alloted a little time to flirt with the Police officers setting up the course - nod to JT who led the race on his "dirty" Harley!  I would have enjoyed hanging around chit-chatting with the guys.  Great bunch with some enjoyable stories about Denver drivers.  Thanks for the laughs and your time.

Now off to the race - for those who don't know the specifics of the race:  the women start the race 3 minutes prior to the men.  The first video shows the women's start.  The second shows how things start off with the men.  Take note how much road area the women cover going up that first hill and remember the men have to get around them.  What a cluster-fart!

And a last bit of humor for those who know Beth.  After a few beers and finally getting a chance to relax....Dirty Dancing!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Marathon Training with a New Puppy

I've crossed over the line into the second half of my marathon training and oh my am I busy.  I've realized a few things over the last two weeks:
  1. There are never enough hours in the day for every thing I need or want to do.  By the end of the day, I have to flip a coin on what I will wrap up the day or workout or crash?!?!  I can hear you say it - why don't you do your workouts in the morning? - and to that I say, I am not a morning person!  I have to ease my way into my day - wake up, potty (pooches then me), feed (pooches then me), coffee (none for pooches), get clothes ready, etc.
  2. Just the hall closet...more in the bedroom!
  3. I own way too many pairs of running shoes and none of them are working for me right now.  I've been rotating between a few and it seems to be working, but I'd really like to try those Somnio custom ones. 
  4. Puppies take up a lot of your time and act like newborn children.  Which is probably why I don't have kids.  You can't put kids out in the back yard while you get your run in at 8 p.m.  Well you could but Focus on the Family would be pounding on your door with a few questions from their spokesman Tim Tebow and we don't want to make him cry (again - Roll Tide!).
  5. The minute you want to do something without anyone seeing it is the moment someone sees you.  Case in point:  I was trying out a new RunLove Fleurs running skirt over my own capris with some difficulties.  It was riding up and becoming a belt.  Now this might have been a fashion statement in the 80's, but at this moment it was a big fashion don't.  So after a mile, I decided I was going to take it off.  I looked one nearby...squatted like I was stretching...still no one...bent over to pull it off and stood up...And who was driving by?!  A sheriff! Never one around when you need one, but wham when you don't!
  6. There is a point when a parent (human or pet) is not grossed out by anything.  Back in the 90's, I remember watching a friend pull back her daughter's diaper with her fingers to check it and I was totally grossed out.  Today I spent over an hour standing in the back yard waiting with a spoon and plastic bag to get a "sample" for the vet.  The things I've cleaned up over the last month would make most people gag, but I have no problems 'cuz I love my furry children.
I'm finally getting a full night's sleep (thanks to a loaner dog crate) with a 4 a.m. wake up call.  So I try to get to bed sooner to make up for the early mornings.  Now I have to hurry up since Summer has already beaten me to slumber land.  She's too cute!  Night all!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Had to Run Fast...Just keep moving!

I really enjoy my Saturday training runs with the team.  The group is motivating and challenging.  And just a lot of fun.  There are all different types of runners:  fast ones, walk/runners and slow ones like me.  Today though, I had to work at the mall and needed to finish my 12 mile run in a short amount of time.  I really had to push myself: one to make time and two because I am so darn tired.  Between the puppy keeping me up and the lack of my favorite addiction item - Diet Pepsi - which I haven't had over the last two days, I'm just plain dragging butt.  And still it's a lot of butt.  With the help of the group and bypassing a race on the trail, I was able to make good time.  I stayed under a 12 min/mile.  Pretty good for someone 20 pounds overweight.  When I finished, my coach gave me a doggy picture frame for my birthday.  Too nice!  I think I'll put a picture of Jersey in it for next to her ashes. 

Then I seriously had to rush home, took time to play with the dogs, got dressed, pottied the pupster, drove to the mall...only to find out they had called me off!  Note to self - check phone messages!  So I did what any other woman would do at the mall, I went shopping.  Penney's was having a good deal on some motivating t-shirts for $10 each so I got three.  After a trip to Target for more things to occupy the puppy, I was headed back home for a nap or two or three.

I did something I haven't done in years.  I slept in a lounge chair in the back yard and let me tell you, it was so relaxing (in between puppy barks).  I have been so worried over the last few days and nights about her going in the house that I haven't been able to get fully asleep so what better way to solve this than to move the bed outdoors.  We've spent the majority of the afternoon in the back yard and Summer is beat.  She's crashed out on the floor now.  This has been our first full (almost) day together.  Now I'm crossing my fingers she sleeps through the night. 

**For more puppy humor, check out My Furry Children page.**

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Happy Birthday To Me! Minus the Cake!

Today was my birthday.  I'm forty-something.  Single.  Overweight.  And I've had enough of this self-pity loathing mood I've been in for some time now.  I need to get off my butt and do something about it.  Seriously OFF MY BUTT!  Otherwise I'm going to remain single and overweight for the rest of my way Jose! 

So today I started back on WW.  Can I say I'm starving right now and wishing I could have some birthday cake?!  Maybe after my 15 miler on Saturday.  I fell off the P90X bandstand when my Jersey Girl got really sick from the chemo.  I'm going to start back on it on Monday, but with some changes so it's not eating up all of my time.  I cannot dedicate that much time to it, running, my new puppy and work.  But I need it because I noticed I wasn't feeling some of the usual pains I've had during marathon training.

I can honestly say I've been here before.  I've said I'm going to get started down this road and about halfway down it something causes me to take a wrong turn.  I need to understand that wrong turns in dieting are okay.  Sometimes I'm going to lapse and eat 20-40 Oreos (oh double-stuff)!  Just get back on track.  My biggest problem is I go "all or nothing".  I can't do this dieting thing, well halfway.  I get so into counting points and gaining workout points and on and on that when I go overboard, I feel there is no way back.  Did you know Chobani BB yogurt is "3" WW points?!  It's okay to stray sometimes. 

So I may be looking for guidance from some of the bloggy world success stories.  If I post a comment/question on your blog, please try to offer something in return.  I'm looking for encouragement as well as something to occupy my mind and fingers so I'm not standing in front of the fridge.  I hope you understand.  Thanks!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Running & Rambling

The flowers were received on Saturday from my vet and the staff at High Plains Vet Hospital.  I thought it was very sweet of them to take the time. 

Bright & early, I did a nice 13 mile run on Saturday morning.  Nice, meaning I got through it without breaking down and crying even once.  I thought I was going to on the way to the run, but once I got there and started running with the group - some of which already knew about Jersey - I felt better.  I got wrapped up in my thoughts and just kept going on and on.  She would have wanted it that way. 

I spent the rest of the day up in Denver trying to locate a new puppy.  Waiting in the long lines at PetCo for the puppy rescue, but no luck since I got there just as things were kicking off.  People start lining up for it at 6 a.m. and the event doesn't start until 11!  They had 4 Rottie mixes and one by one they left.  I even told my story to 2 girls standing next to me and what do they go in and pick?!  One of the Rotties!  Bitches!  There was another lady who had lost her German Shephard on Friday to cancer.  It has not been a good weekend!  She got a puppy though.
Off to MaxFund rescue to see their mixed breed puppy.  A Rottie/Hound mix.  It never slowed down and kept chewing on my fingers.  She was cute and I took the papers to turn in to be approved to take her home.  However, I needed something over the weekend and they said it would take 3-4 days to get through the approval process.  Also I needed to bring my other dog up to their facility to see how Scout would react.  Now don't get me wrong, I love my Scout "Foofer", but the thought of an hour + drive up and hour + drive back and I still wouldn't know if I had the puppy made me really think about the whole process. 

So I got home late Sat. and started doing some more searching.  I looked at Rotties, Labs, Weimerieners...Rottles (Rottie crossed w/ a Standard Poodle)!  I got a response from Double D Puppies.  They had 3 Rottie females available right now.  So I went out today to see them and well...the picture says it all.  The quietest one with the biggest feet came home with me.  She's shy and doesn't have a name yet.  I'm leaning towards Summer, but I'm open to suggestions - please!  Scout has mixed opinions still since the puppy thinks her tail is pull toy.  But I think they're going to get along fine.

All is good in the household for now.  Vet check on Tuesday to see if there are any issues with the puppy.  Classes start this week for the second summer session.  Things are looking better for all of us.  Thanks again to everyone who offered their thoughts & prayers about Jersey.  I still miss her, everyday, but she's happy and healthy, and waiting for me at the Rainbow Bridge. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Goodbye my dear friend - Jersey Girl (02/18/2006-08/05/2010)

Rest in peace sweet baby.  No more pain.  No more chemo.  Go play Boog and I'll see you soon! 
Love you Monkey Butt!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Chemo Round 2 - Update (not good)

My little Jersey is not sitting next to me tonight.  She's at the Emergency vet for an overnight stay.  She had a really bad reaction to her chemo and she "crashed" about 4:30 this afternoon.  These photos are from today and show how tired / dehydrated she was as her vomiting continued thru from last night into today.  I tried everything to make her comfortable, but when she started whining, I knew she was in some serious pain.  So off to the vet - kudos to the techs at High Plains Vet Hospital & Dr. Anne Pierce - where her white blood cell count was up and her pulse was over 200 for most of the visit.  She got meds and oxygen, and some bad vet tech humor...But she wasn't ready to come home yet.  Which is why she's at the 24 hour vet.  She's getting more meds/fluids/bad vet tech humor!  She was cutting some serious Zzz's when I left her and that's a good sign - both she and I haven't had much sleep the last 24.  I'll know more in the morning. 

"Can we pretend that airplanes in the night sky are like shooting stars
I could really use a wish right now, a wish right now, a wish right now
Can we pretend that airplanes in the night sky are like shooting stars
I could really use a wish right now, a wish right now, a wish right now"

Airplanes lyrics © Artist Publishing Group West; J Franks Publishing; Kinetics & One Love

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Just Let The Pictures Do The Talking!

My little Jersey Girl's outfit was proudly made by Bekah at Honey Bee Baby Boutique

Monday, August 2, 2010

Denver Marathon Course Unveiled

They finally revealed the course for the 2010 race and the rumor was that it was going to be easier & faster - doesn't look like they were thinking properly when they planned the last 3 miles.  Looked like they got to mile 23 and then added in some more miles to make the cut.  It still goes through all of the parks and some of the back-tracks were eliminated until...loopy loopy mile 23!  At the very least, it looks like they go rid of the annoying "pass the finish line one block over" before going downhill, around the corner, and UPhill to the finish line!  Nothing like hearing the cheering and still having the .2 miles left. 

First time I've ever signed up for a long race without knowing the course.  Don't think I'll ever do that one again.  Can't wait to run this one again (even with the new course).  See everyone there!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Chef Note:  Thanks to Kristin over at Iowa Girl Eats for the recipe!

In the mix:

• 1/2 scoop vanilla whey protein powder

• 1/2 Tablespoon chia seeds  (I didn't put these in because I couldn't find them)

• 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond breeze

• 1 Tablespoon almond butter

• 1 frozen banana

• enough spinach to fill the blender to the top!

I was very skeptical about this recipe.  She said it doesn't taste like spinach.  I just kept looking at her pictures of the blender with all of that green!  So I've had this frozen banana in my fridge for about a week now just tempting me to try it.  I picked up some more almond butter last night and this morning decided it was time.  This stuff is really good.  I don't even taste one bit of the spinach.  Trust me!  Try it!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Two more recipes down!

Well my breakfast was quick and easy and OH MY GOODNESS so yummy!  I threw together a Cottage Cheese, Yogurt and Fruit Parfait.  It is layered with 1/2 cup cottage cheese (I used 2% small curd), Chobani Greek Raspberry yogurt (1 serving), and a sliced banana.  The recipe called for a diced peach on top, but I was in a hurry and decided I would save it for a later date.  My lunch was something called the "Kitchen Sink" salad.  And that's exactly what it is - everything but the kitchen sink.  I used baby greens, cubed chicken, shredded cheese, dried cranberries, sliced carrots, sliced amonds and balsamic & vinegar dressing.  No recipe is necessary though you can find examples on Kristin's blog.  Me - I just put whatever I felt like having into a bowl and out the door!  Dinner was leftover Tortilla Egg Scramble - not bad the second day.  Just microwaved to warm up the chips and eggs.  Top with salsa, cheese, etc. 

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Day One of the Recipes - Three Down!

So I decided to get up early enough to make my breakfast and lunch before work..can't get up early to go for a run, but food, I'm right there!  I have really been wondering about some of the oatmeal recipes so I got everything together to make Baked Banana Bread Oatmeal.  It was super easy to make.  The only problem I had was the 25 minutes it took to bake.  As per the directions, I was going to put it under the broiler, but threw everything in a bowl and poured milk over it instead.  I would have taken a picture of it, but it was gone too fast. 

For lunch, I put some Aidells Habenero and Green Chili Sausages in a grill pan and cooked them until they were blackened on two sides.  I added canned corn and deli potato salad as sides.  I wrapped the sausage in a whole wheat tortilla instead of a bun and ate it plain.  The spices of the sausage were enough.  Safeway was having a sale on some really good potato salad - I would have made my own, but that takes a lot of time - to take the place of the homemade kind Kristin made.

For dinner, I started to think about the Tuna Casserole and quickly turned to the Tortilla Egg Scramble because it looked easier to get made before I starved to death.  I got so caught up into getting to the eatin' part that I forgot to put green onions on top of it before I took the piccy.  I used store bought salsa which worked out fine.   It was my first time cutting up an avocado.  Yeah I can hear you laughing.  I even had to ask a lady at the store how to buy one.  This stuff was delicious and I even made more than necessary so I can have some tomorrow - don't know if it will be as good then but it's worth a try.  Two thumbs up on this one!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Life in the Shopping Cart Lane

A while back I started reading Iowa Girl Eats' blog and found a lot of recipes I thought would be nice to try.  However, the more I read, the more I wondered how does she do her grocery shopping?  Low and behold, she offers tips on how to meal plan and grocery shop.  So I studied her tips, did some research on which recipes I wanted to make this week, made up my list and set off to the grocery store. 

Well let's just say I'm worse than a bachelor because I had to buy almost everything for each recipe.  Therefore, I totally blew her on a budget of $50 a week.  I spent $160!  And I really tried to save money with my Safeway card.  Maybe shopping at Aldi in Iowa is cheaper.  I'm going to try out King Sooper next weekend which is part of the Kroger chain.  But don't my fridge and cabinets look FABULOUS right now?!  **Nod to the Almond Butter gods - you are my new found friend!**

The recipes I picked to try out are:
  • Spinach Salad
  • Tortilla Egg Scramble
  • Fresh Vegetable Pasta Toss
  • Tuna Salad
  • Green Monster – only if I find the ingredients  **found all of them @ Safeway!**
  • Lemon Tuna Noodle Casserole
  • Cottage Cheese & Fruit Parfaits
  • Chicken Brats W/Potato Salad & Sweet Corn
  • Turkey Burgers W/Baked Beans & Potato Salad
  • Baked Tilapia W/Asparagus & Rice
  • Baked Banana Bread Oatmeal
I'll let you know how things go as I try things this week.  I'm curious about the Green Monster. 

On another note:  I now know what everyone is talking about with regards to these things called Sweaty Bands.  I ordered one on Saturday morning - after I didn't win one in a giveaway - because I wanted to see for myself if it worked.  I have very fine hair and most headbands do that slow creep to the back of the head and BOING off the back.  I got it in the mail today - yes today!  And so far I'm not having any problems with it, but I just got done with a short run and my hair is sweaty.  I'll have to see how it is when my hair is clean and dry.  I got the white reflective for nighttime running.  It looks very pretty.  I may have to order one of the patterned ones if this one passes all of the tests.  Thanks to everyone who spread the word on these!

[Update:  The band works!  Order up a bunch!  I'm thinking about one of the polka dot ones with some green - my favorite - color.]