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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

A really quick howzit!!

I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday!! I just thought I'd say a quick hello and share some pics with you from our celebration.

The tree at my in-laws' house. I told you it was ridiculous. There was also a secondary pile for the people that weren't spending Christmas morning with us.

My dearies playing with their new scooters on the day after Christmas.

He, uh, has a flair for the dramatic sometimes. Hey, at least you know he appreciates his gifts.

Puppies!!! In just two short weeks one of these cuties will be ours. For now, we get to play with all four of them.

Craaaaaaaab. Our annual crab feed is on the 23rd and Uncle Bud never disappoints. My father-in-law ate so much that he got sick.

This is the first year in many that we haven't had any real family drama during the holiday. My drama decided not to rear it's ugly head until the day after Christmas. And now I'm stuck trying to figure out how I will fit in my running without my sister living with us. Maybe time to buckle down and get that single jogger and take my little girl with me....maybe time to invest in a treadmill. I have no idea. More to follow.....

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Is it Thursday?? Holy crap, it's Thursday!!

This week has been a discombobulated mess of sorts. My last posting? Yeah, I started it on Monday and only just now posted it. Lame, I know. So here we are, just a few days from the big day. Today is Christmas Eve-Eve, the day that we here in the Brown Family kick off our holiday festivities. Every year, my mother-in-law (the sane one) hosts a huge crab feed at her home. Her brother brings fresh caught crab from up North and cooks it up for our indulgence on CEE. He barbecues bacon wrapped albacore as an appetizer and we gather together in close quarters, sipping on wine, laughing at the kids, munching on bread and salad, and cracking crab shells. Usually we wind up spraying our tablemates with crab juice or lemon. It's all good. Really, it's quite fantastic. We are kind of a loud bunch. We tease and laugh and make inappropriate jokes that the kids don't get. We play games and usually the kids can cajole someone into letting them open just ooooooone present. It's a blast and I look forward to it every year.

Tomorrow is cookie madness at our house. Tomorrow I will wake up early and absolutely destroy every square inch of my kitchen. See, I don't have any counter space, so I have to be extremely effective in flat space usage. I will bake approximately twenty dozen cookies by myself -well, in all honesty I will have two 'helpers' but that really winds up being more work. Then I will box said cookies into festive holiday boxes, shower, and leave for my mom's. She's approximately a 5k away (I'm actually thinking of maybe running to her house to get my training run in and showering once I get there, but we'll see) and we will do our Christmas dinner with her, my stepdad, and siblings.

THEN on Christmas morning I cook the traditional Christmas breakfast that the kids won't let me flake on. Eggs, bacon, pancakes, toast....I've scaled back. When people used to come over it included sausage and hash browns. I have to draw the line somewhere. This year our Christmas morning will just be the four of us Browns and my sister that lives with us. It will be the first year in five years that my brother-in-law hasn't stayed overnight and spent the morning with us. I'm kind of sad, but I know that he is starting his new life with his fiancee and I am reluctantly happy to share him with her and her family. I digress. Following our present bonanza, we stay in our pajamas and drive 45 minutes to my in-laws (again, the sane ones) house to open the most ridiculous amount of presents anyone has ever seen. Truly, there are a lot of people there, and they all LOOOOOOVE to give. I'll take a picture of the presents tonight because they will have already started before we get there on Christmas. There is usually a pile of gifts around the tree that is taller than my four-foot kid and extends about six feet into the living room. It takes HOURS. So many hours, they usually take a break. A present intermission, can you believe it? It's ridiculous. But my kids enjoy it a lot. They are the only two in their generation, so they get spoiled to the extreme. Lots of clothes, books, toys, toys, toys, toys. We have to take the SUV out there. We made the mistake one year of bringing the car and not everything fit. And this was back when we had only one kid....

So you probably won't hear from me until next week. Hopefully I will have put a few more miles under my belt (and ZERO pounds!!!!). I'll be sure to share pictures of the festivities.

I hope everyone has a truly blessed and joyous holiday surrounded with loved ones. You all deserve the best. <3

Monday, December 20, 2010

The past week recap

It's been, well, an interesting and busy week for me. Last you heard, I was getting ready to kick off my next half marathon training cycle. I vowed to do the cross training and actually stick to the plan this time. Shortly after my last blog, I went out to my garage/laundry area to swap the load and bring some clothes in. On the way in, I very slyly stepped into the house and used my opposite foot to swing the door shut behind me. This usually works for me. This time? Not so much. I felt a sting as the metal thingy on the bottom of the door hit the back of my heel/lower ankle. Ouch! Naturally, I didn't have a hamper so I just had this huge load of clean laundry balancing between my arms. I limped over to the couch, dropped the clothes, and checked the damage. OMG. It's about an inch long and pretty gnarly looking. I bandaged myself up and thought it was good. Then I tried wearing a pair of tennis shoes. Not good. Not good at all. Pain, serious pain....I was a little nervous about how my scheduled Tuesday run would go.

As luck would have it, Tuesday's run did not happen. I still couldn't wear regular shoes without limping a little, and my sister decided not to come home in the evening when I was supposed to run with my husband. (She stays home with the kids so we can leave.) Wednesday afternoon, my husband got off of work early in the day, and I laced up my shoes. I put about four bandaids over my boo-boo and off I went. Three miles on deck, three miles completed. It was not my best time ever, but considering I had hurt my stupid ankle, forgot my inhaler beforehand, and hadn't really run three miles in two months, I think it was pretty good. Every time I felt like just turning around and going home I thought of my husband's voice saying, "I just don't know if you can do it alone." It pissed me off a little bit, just enough motivation to keep going!!

Sunday I was slated to go for a four miler. In case you don't know, here in Sacramento we are raining. A lot. Looking outside yesterday morning I thought, 'there is no way I'm going out in this'. But I thought about it for a few hours and finally decided to go, no matter what. Just as I pulled my jacket on, I looked outside and realized it wasn't raining anymore! I hurried through my stretching and headed out. Now, I'm not really prepared for this running in the cold, potentially wet business. I wasn't sure what to do, so out I went with my tanktop, long sleeved DriFit top, and a Nike running jacket along with Mizuno ear warmers and some cheap cotton gloves. I didn't even make it a mile before I was ripping off the ear warmers. As my whole core started heating up, I started getting really uncomfortable. Shortly after I took off the ear warmers, off came the gloves which I shoved in my jacket pocket. Somewhere around mile two I stopped. I was hot, ridiculously hot. So I took off the jacket to try to devise a plan to run with it tied around my waist. I took off again, no luck. One pocket had my cell phone in it and the other side had my gloves and ear warmers. They were hitting my ankles and calves. I untied the jacket and tried rolling it up like a belt. I took off again, and this time the pockets flipped out of the "belt" and started hitting me in my hips. Arrgh! Highly uncomfortable and I'm sure super attractive. So the jacket went back on for the rest of the run. Running up Jefferson Blvd has a pretty decent sized hill (to me anyway) and I was able to truck it up the whole thing which I was pretty excited about. I hit a few sprinkles right around the three mile marker and thankfully that was it. Remarkably, I made it to the end in 50 minutes which put me at a 12:17 mile. Slow, but I don't think that it was too awful bad for my first long run with lots of stupid issues like overheating, a ton of wind, and my jacket drama.

Now I know that I really really need to keep up my endurance during these runs. To finish my next half marathon in 2:30 I need to push for 11:25 minute miles. I have done this before, but never on a run longer than 5 miles. I need to believe in myself, believe that I can do this. Stay dedicated, stay motivated, keep my feet moving.

Monday, December 13, 2010

It begins....again.

Today officially kicks off our training program for the next half marathon in our playlist. It's hard to believe that in twelve weeks, I'll be out pounding the pavement for 2:30 (did you catch that positive vibe? oooh yeahhhh...) to complete another 13.1 miles. Not so long ago, it was an impossibility that I would ever run 5 miles. And here I am, with aspirations to run two HMs next year followed by a full in 2012. Amazing.

Yesterday we went to Fleet Feet to pick up some new shoes. I love our Fleet Feet. It's always so full of friendly staff and shoppers. The store itself is so quaint. Nobody looks at you funny when you're walking across the store with your jeans rolled up to your knees. They put your shoes on for you and rub your feet as they talk to you about the foot bones and arch support. Nobody looks at you funny when you run across the sales floor with your jeans rolled up to your knees with two different shoes on. Unfortunately, I think I party fouled yesterday. I was all excited about my shoes, they felt great, looked great, yay! The very helpful foot expert cut my Superfeet insoles to my shoe, we paid, and off we went. After dinner, we popped our shoes on just to check it out and wear them around the house before scuffing them up outside. My shoes were too tight. OH NO. I am notorious for this. At first I thought, no big deal, I'll just take them back. My husband looked at me with an amazed look on his face and said, "yeah, it's a good thing you had $35 insoles cut to fit the shoe". *#&^^%! I'm going to call them today to find out what I should do. If all else fails, I guess I can try and see how the size 8 insole works in the size 8.5 shoe.....if not, I guess I just screwed myself out of $35.

I put my old shoes on and we headed out the door for a quick jog to see how his knees would hold up to the upcoming mileage. No bueno. We were just going to go two miles, no biggie. After using the Pain Roller and stretching for a ridiculous amount of time as advised by his doctor, he still was only able to run for less than a quarter mile. Almost instantly, he told me that his knee was twinging pretty bad, after a minute or two of looking at his face I asked if we needed to stop and he admitted that we did. So we walked to the stop light and turned to head home. He already had big plans for his crosstraining (he is going to start biking to work a few days a week and swimming once a week at least), but he is really upset that he can't run. I'm scared. If he can't run, I will have to do this training myself. I have to run this whole thing myself. He told me that I have to know that I can do it myself- I guess this will be my chance to prove it.

Oh yeah, and check out this giveaway at Shut up and Run!! . It's for a lot of really good stuff.

Friday, December 10, 2010

2011 goals...

Here we are, closing out 2010. Another year on the books. Ten years since graduation, ten years of 'adulthood'. That's a lot of time to look back on. I love going through old pictures and videos. I was browsing through some photo albums the other day and reminiscing. It's funny, we go from one group of pictures-our senior trips to Santa Cruz and Cancun- where my husband is in shape and looking great to another group just a year later where he is extremely overweight and looking unhappy and uncomfortable. I don't know when it happened. So quickly he went from 220 lbs to 320 lbs. No scale, no accountability. We talked about how it happened- eating out all the time, not eating properly (no breakfast, lunch at 3, dinner at 9, nothing in the middle), not moving at all. With me, it was a slower transition. I graduated in 2000 at 125 lbs, a size 3. I remember purchasing jeans at a size seven one shopping trip and then all of a sudden needing an eleven which I was absolutely positive was bad sizing and vowed never to buy that brand again. I weighed 159 lbs in 2003 when I discovered I was pregnant. After having him, I was 161 lbs. Fast forward to 2007 when I got pregnant with Justice and weighed 172. Fast forward to this spring when I weighed in at 178 lbs. Unacceptable.

My goal for 2010 was to lose weight and run an half marathon. I have lost weight- 17 lbs. It's a start, a decent start I suppose, but I am really hoping to drop at least twenty more. So far it's a process of stages. Stage one is to get in shape, drop the bulk of the weight. Stage two is to fine tune- get toned and focus on the last of the weight, whatever is left to lose. At this point, two kids and ten years later, I don't know if 125 is a realistic weight goal for me. It doesn't seem possible at this point and I'm not going to set it as a goal. Once I drop down to my goal, I will work from there.

I also did run a half marathon. If you could call it that. How about- I didn't walk a half marathon. We finished it together at 2:48. So now I get to the next stage, work on improving. We are going to be participating in the Shamrock'n half marathon in March. Our twelve week training plan starts this coming week. I am determined to stick to the plan this cycle. Last time, we skipped a bunch of runs and barely cross trained. I hope that with one half marathon under my belt and a full training schedule completed, we will be able to finish in 2:30. That's shaving off a little over a minute per mile. Can I do it? I think I can. I read this inspirational quote the other day- "Instead of thinking 'I'll believe it when I see it', we need to change our thinking to 'I'll see it when I believe it'." I totally think that self-destructive thinking limits us. Me in particular. I plan on sticking to the training plan this time around, even if it means running by myself sometimes. Even if it means I have to wake up earlier in the morning to get in some cardio/cross training. I plan on running Shamrock'n in two and a half hours.

That being said, I also plan on not stuffing my face this Christmas even though it will be super tempting with all of Aunt Debbie's cookies, cakes, and homemade fudge. I will steer clear of the See's sampler box that Gary never fails to bring. I will politely decline mamosas at breakfast. I will limit my consumption of delicious Starbucks brewed beverages. It's a time of great change in my life, and I fully intend to make it a time of positivity and extreme growth.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The past 19 days....

I have been a total blog slacker. Truth be told, I get busy. And when I log on to blogspot, I find myself having so much fun catching up on everyone else's blogs that I run out of time to put a few of my own thoughts up. Eh, what are you gonna do? So here's a quick recap of what's been going on with me these past 19 days.

Drove an hour and a half to do some of this:

The kids had an absolute blast, and so did we. It was only a day trip, but it was well worth the relatively short car ride and the packing/preparing for the day.

We ate some of this:

Every year Jacob's company gives us a turkey. We were supposed to be out of town for the holiday, and he assumed that we would give the turkey to my mom or something so he picked the biggest one left. It was 20 lbs of turkey. Luckily we still had the turkey when we discovered that we couldn't go through with our plans due to extreme weather conditions (we were supposed to travel about 6 hours north, almost to Oregon). Twenty pounds of turkey can feed four people, make turkey enchiladas, turkey spinach pie, numerous turkey sandwiches and still not all get used. We had the quietest Thanksgiving ever, with just the four of us. It was really a nice change, even though it was really strange for both my husband and I.
Indulged in some of this:

Some friends of ours took us wine tasting for my birthday, and we visited four Napa wineries. It was a lot of fun. We had never been wine tasting before, and it was definitely an experience to remember. It was pouring on us all the way home, but we wound up driving to our friends' house in Auburn and hanging out in front of the fire winding down before we called it a night and grabbed the kids from my mom's.

Celebrated a little bit of this:

My lil princess turned three years old on the 27th. We celebrated her birthday by heading to Leatherby's and treating our family to dessert. It was crowded in there but we all had a good time.

Notice something missing from my recap??? My running shoes? Yeah, I didn't spend nearly as much time with them as I wanted to. I did venture out once for a short run, but that was really about it. I am running our local Shamrock'n half marathon in March and the kickoff of my twelve week training program is this coming Sunday. I'm really looking forward to having a reason to train again....I wish I could motivate myself without having a specific reason to get out there, but it is what it is. I'll just have to find another half marathon about four months after this next one so I don't lapse into such a long down time. =o)
Have an awesome day!!!!