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!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Native Eyewear Reviews

So I've been trying out some new sunglasses over the past few weeks.  My favorite pair of Optic Nerve sunglasses are getting a little worn and I've seen them enough in race photos.  The first pair of Native's I tried are the Native Eyewear Bolt Sunglasses - Polarized Reflex Lenses.  These are a little larger than I thought they would be, but still worked for a windy and cold run one Saturday morning.  The frames are 5” temple to temple and cover from brow to cheekbone really well.  It kept the wind from making my eyes water.  The frame has an interchangeable lens design, but initially they only come with one set (others are available at additional cost - not at STP).  Only drawback I found was a slight loss to peripheral vision due to the wrap-around frames.  These list for $119, but I was able to pick them up on sale via STP.  The color shown in the photo is Snow Streak/Polarized Silver Reflex which I think is a nice pearl white.  Recommend them for medium to large size faces.

The other set I picked up is the Native Ignition Sport Sunglasses - Polarized.  These are quite different from the Bolts in that they are smaller in size.  They are 4-¾” temple to temple and fit snug around my ears (not a bit of movement while running).  There was a small gap between the bottom of the lenses and my cheekbones, but not enough for me to send them back.  These, like the Bolts, have the Native signature vents at the top of the frames which increases airflow and helps with keeping them from fogging up.  That is the biggest problem I've had this past winter with my Optic Nerves.  I will say that EK Ekcessories Cat Crap (found at REI) helps some with the fogging up problem.  Anyway back to the Ignition glasses:  Again, I picked them up at STP on sale (list price is $120) in the color shown in the picture - Pale Ale Fade W/Polarized Blue Reflex Lens.  Recommend them for small to medium size faces.

Monday, April 26, 2010

School Days! School Days!

If my life didn't already have enough stress...I'm now officially registered for the Summer Semester at Colorado Techincal University.  What the heck was I thinking?!  Thinking about staying gainfully employed is the primary reason.  I am going to start working as a DBA (which I know databases-need to know coding) and my company would pay for my schooling.  So here I am.  Going for another Master's. 

Is anyone else working towards a degree and do you feel it will benefit your career?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Loved the run! Hated the wind!

It was a beautiful day (once the sun came up) for a run in the Garden.  Team was there bright and early.  I wasn't awake yet.  Picked up my coffee on the drive in.  Had breakfast then too - Clif Chocolate Brownie Bar.  Later wished I'd eaten earlier.  Got in 6 miles with my buddy, Cindy.  Then we walked another two.  I think we both had 8 on the schedule so that covers it.  Eight miles in the Garden isn't easy; heck 6 isn't!  One teammate did 12.  Hope she ate something decadent after that run!  She deserved it.  Photo courtesy of the Garden of the Gods - Colorado Springs, Colorado website.

Well Mother's Day is fast approaching!  Thought I'd remind everyone just in case.  Got my order in on my favorite website - QVC!  I'd tell you what it is, but I'd like it to remain a surprise for my mom.  Tell you later!  Don't forget to get your mom something special on her special day.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Challenges Update

I'm so bummed.  Only days into this challenge and I've messed up on two out of the three.  I've missed two workouts (there is still time tonight for a workout, but with the icky weather, I'm just not into it) and last night, I woke up to let the dogs out and snacked on some goldfish.  I'm addicted to those little buggers.  I have been eating well this week.  But had too many diet sodas today.  I'll pay for it later when I won't be able to get to sleep. 

Tomorrow is a new day.  Training run with the group.  It's gonna be a good one.  Get at least one out of three. 10:00 min/mile here I come! 

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

No Turning Back Now!

In a brief moment of insanity (or runner's high from my training run today), I registered for the Denver Marathon on October 17th.  This will be my second time running this race.  I've done the 1/2 marathon also in 2008 (would have done the full but was recovering from ITBS).  Anyway, it is a fun race if the weather plays along.  In 2008, it was 34 degrees and drizzled the entire race.  I took me nearly 30 minutes in the shower to thaw my butt out.  In 2009, can you say "OH MY GOD, IS IT HOT?!"  We had had a blizzard the weekend before and on race day, no such luck - sunny and 85!  I matched right along with the Country Music Marathon I ran earlier in the year in 96 degrees.  That race I just wanted finish.  So if the weather gods can play nice with us, it should be a good race.  If not, I'll be cursing the entire way - just like last year!

3 Changes Challenge

Another blogger offered up a challenge:  Change 3 things for a month.  So I thought about what I needed to do to kick start my workouts to get ready for summer racing season.  I came up with:
  1. No late night eating
  2. Follow my workout schedule (provided by BRC Fit Team)
  3. Get back down below a 10:30 min/mile
Well 1 and 2 are looking like they are going to be pretty easy to stick with.  Just takes a little control and dedication.  Number 3 is going to take some work.  I'm still sitting at 11:30-12:00 min/mile.  Maybe with the help of 2 I'll get there.  Wish me luck!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

What a load of crapola!

Well I missed my workout last night because I started playing on the computer and before I knew, it was bedtime.  I just was not in the mood to work out anyway.  So tonight I made it a point to get into my running clothes before I even thought of sitting down.  It was drizzling a little when I started out and everything was going well until...shin splints!  Now I haven't had a dose of those in a long time.  Couldn't figure out what was causing them.  Wasn't the shoes because I just ran in them on Saturday with no problems.  So I stretched some more and trudge on.  Mile one down - no better.  Took a walk break and rubbed them a little.  Mile two - a little better.  Then for some strange reason in mile three I started favoring my left leg.  RUN OVER!  3.37 miles done so not a total loss, but not what I wanted to do today.  Icing the shins now - brrrgghhh! 

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Review - North Face Women's Nimble Zip Jacket

General Features (from Altrec.com)
Standard fit
TNF™ Apex Aerobic fabric wind permeability rated at 10 CFM
Quarter-length, center front zip
Lower hip stash pocket
Hem cinchcord
Zipper refer to the side-pocket zippers only
Avg Weight: 355 g (125 oz)
Center Back Length: 26"
Fabric: 90D 248 g/sq m (73 oz/sq yd) plain-weave 4-way stretch TNF™ Apex Aerobic with DWR

And in my opinion...
First let's see what the  fantastic CO weatherman has on schedule for us.  Please show us the weather report for Saturday morning: Scattered showers. Cloudy, with a high near 47. South wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%.  With that being said, I knew I needed to have something for a nice jog in the cold rain.  So I picked this jacket up at Dick's Sporting Goods (several online sites offer it). 

LOVED IT!  Initially, I was thinking it wasn't going to be enough.  The wind was blowing out the south pretty good and it was drizzling/foggy.  But as soon as I got going, I warmed up perfectly.  It blocked out the cold wind and I could see the water beading up on the jacket.  Now, I did have two shirts on underneath (1 LS/1 SS) so I did get a little cool later in the run but come on, I'm trying to move a mountain here with two chunks I call legs so I sweat! 

I picked it up in the Melon Red since that was the only color in my size other than Black and I have enough of that.  Very pretty color.  The shirt ran large and long.  At what point did companies start to think that making a shirt longer makes it a bigger size?  Need some wiggle room here buddy!  Dick's Sporting Goods sells this jacket for $59.  Highly recommend it.  [ Updated: Me in my new coat during the weekend run!]

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thinking about the next one...?!

Thought I'd add in a short note about marathons. They say you can't begin to think about your next one until you've forgotten your last one. Initially, it was easy for me to sign up for my next one. I ran my first 26.2 miles in December 2008. It was the Las Vegas Marathon. I ran it with two knee braces and took 5:47 to finish.  But before the end of the year, I was already signed up for the Country Music Marathon in April 2009. That was not an easy race by any means - 96 degrees!  Being a glutton for punishment, I was signed up for the Denver Marathon in October 2009 by May. I guess I brought the heat to that race too - 85 degrees! And to increase the pain even more, I crammed another race 7 weeks later. I returned to Las Vegas for the inaugural Rock 'n Roll Marathon.  No knee braces this time around and the new course, low temps and overall great experience paid off - 5:32 new PR! 

Four months later and I'm not signed up for anything!  Actually the only race I've ran is a 5K.  I don't know what's holding me back, but I'm eye-balling trying again in October - without the heat this time!

Product Review - REI Woodridge Fleece Hoodie

I thought every once in a while I'd throw in a review of an item I've tried out during a run.  This past Saturday, I tried out the REI Woodridge Fleece Hoodie - at REI.com  I've always wanted a 3/4 zip fleece, but haven't found one I liked.  This one actually has a kangaroo pocket that goes all the way through which was nice to keep your hands warm.  I was able to keep my inhaler and cough drops in it with no problems. 

I really didn't need the hoodie.  I think not having a tie string makes it pretty useless in any Colorado wind.  The zipper doesn't go up the neck very high so it doesn't get tight enough, but could help out with eliminating cool-down chills.  The sleeves have a nice band at the wrist so it doesn't hang down too low.  Nice scroll design on the left shoulder adds a little flair.  I picked it up in the "SPRING WATER" color which I think is a little lighter than what the website shows.

Initially, I had a Nike Winter Mock Running Shirt underneath it since the temp was in the low 40's and there was a good breeze blowing.  I had to take the turtleneck off about 1/2 through my 7 miler because it got a little too warm.  I was comfortable for the remainder of the run, but did get chilled when the wind picked back up again.  It's not a thick fleece so it doesn't hold off gusty breezes, but it is nice for cool Colorado morning runs.  Super soft.  Washes/dries well.  Would highly recommend it.  It sells for $46.50 at REI.  [Updated: Me in my REI Fleece Hoodie.]

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Workaholic or Putz! BOTH!!

Yesterday, I was all ready to blog about my day with the BRC team.  I had my coffee and was working on the header piccy when the phone rang.  I knew who it was just as soon as it started - my part-time job.  "Can you come in this afternoon?"  Someone wanted to leave early because they had family in town and our normal replacement had found a job elsewhere.  Then the inner torment started.  "Why should they get to leave early?  Is there life more important?  Is my life that pathetic that I'm actually considering giving up my day off?  I really could use the hours.  I could do some shopping while I'm there."  As you can tell from the direction this conversation with myself, I ended up going in.  Only four hours, but now I'm waiting to go back in for four hours today (Sunday).  So my only day of relaxation was Friday and that day was spent dealing with the Vet!  I'm really in a rutt!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Get my @ss in gear!

Let's get this thing going again!

I've just been in a funky mood for months now.  I get up in the morning and I feel like I could mark off everything on my to-do list, but by the time I get home...nothing!  I just want to sit on the couch and do nothing.  My house is starting to look like an episode of "Hoarding".

This year started off with my Rottie being diagnosed with lymphoma which is what probably started this mood.  I was hoping her remission would change things, nope.  Sign-up for the BRC Fit Team didn't even phase things. 

Now as my fat chick clothes (which I unfortunately hung on to like an idiot) are starting to cling like a fleece shirt to a pair of panty-hose, I'm drive to a new form of aarrrggghhh!  It's nice I work at a clothing store part-time so I can buy new things, but I'm slowly moving up & up & up in sizes instead of the good direction. 

So I figured if I had something that occupied my time, like a blog, kept me from boredom eating, like a blog, and humiliated me to the point of losing the pudge, like a blog that tells everyone about my pudge, I might actually get moving off the couch and finally get out of this mood I'm in.