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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

After Tuesday, even the calendar says WTF.

It's Wednesday, MAY 25th. I live in California. I'm looking out my back sliding door right now and see what? Sunshine? Not. A. Freakin. Chance. It's raining. Not a summer sprinkle. It's raining and has been for the past several hours. Guess I'm not running today. I'll be doing yoga once my daughter takes her nap. (As you may recall, she's not conducive to a good workout.) My puppy Bruiser got fixed on Monday so he's busy visiting Coney Island. We'll see how he handles me on the yoga mat. Chances are he will be just as pesky, just with a lampshade on his head.

Last night Isaiah had his weekly pack meeting. He's a Tiger Cub which is mostly 1st graders, so the boys are all around seven years old. We met up last night at a local park to do a combination barbecue/den meeting. The boys had a blast. First they played tug-of-war. We did a combination of the boys (there were four scouts and two younger siblings) versus the three moms present. Hilarious. Moms won. YAY MOMS!! Then we did parent and kid vs the rest of the pack. Isaiah looked at me and said, "Maybe we should get Daddy." Jacob was barbecuing. My feelings were a little hurt but I understand his position. Mommy: physically weak and small-ish. Daddy: superman. Well, guess what. Mommy got the job done and we whooped up on them. Haha!

I am blown away sometimes that I am a parent. You would think after seven plus years of being the designated Mother Hen I would be used to it, but no. I still stop in my tracks sometimes with the realization, "Mom. That's me!" I mean, I remember when I was a kid and how I felt about my mom. Shouldn't I know everything? Shouldn't I have a touch that can calm the wildest beast and magic kisses that cure all injuries? And then I understand. I do. To them, I do and that's good enough. As much as I feel like parenting is like treading water in the middle of an ocean with a lifeboat that's juuust out of reach, they think the world of me. There is no Best Mom Award or Cleanest House Award. They think I'm great. My husband thinks I'm great. And that's all that matters.

Off to yoga it up.....this weather sure is dreary. Are we sure it's really May?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Anniversaries and just a little bit further

Today is May 23rd. For the rest of the month I will think to myself, "today in 2009 we were ____". Why? Check here for the whole story. It's terrible that I will always remember that on May 24th I had my first Monte Cristo and the exact clothing that I was wearing, down to the shoes, underwear, earrings, and necklace. (I never wore that combo again.) On May 25th my office was open and I was told NOT to come to work but I did anyway because it took my mind off of things. I remember the hugs and the tears. I remember the two people that pretended I didn't exist for the following three days. I will always remember that on May 28 we celebrated my sister's birthday at my mom's and we huddled around my sister in a wheelchair pretending to be happy about her blowing out candles. Her hair was french braided because she couldn't wash her hair or brush it on her own..... I will always remember May 30 as the day of the first Memorial Service where we filled my husband's Lodge to capacity with people that loved and supported us. It was incredible. The last week of May will probably always be difficult. And here I am, on May 23rd, a half an hour away from the exact time of the accident, steeling myself for a difficult week.

I ran today. I've been trying to log as many miles as I can, which really should be more than I've been but it's more than I was so I guess I shouldn't be too hard on myself. I started off with the jogger doing 2.7 miles. I completed this a few times, then bumped it up to what I thought was 3. I started using mapmyrun on my newly re-activated Blackberry which informed me that the distance I mapped on gmaps as just over 3 miles was actually 3.2. Woohoo! Today I felt awesome so when I hit my turnaround point for the 3.2 I decided to go to the next stop light. Still felt good, so I said I would go to the corner. Still felt good, so I turned the corner and stopped at the next intersection. I figured I should probably stop before I started feeling bad since i still had to make it all the way back home LOL. Turned around and headed for home. Justice was happy as a clam; I love that she loves going out in the jogger! I got back to my starting point and discovered that I had travelled 3.6 miles in 43 minutes which put me at just under a 12 minute mile. Slow in general but I'm picking up speed during my jogger runs (ahahaha I typo'd that as hogger, teehee) which I'm hoping equates to more speed when I'm not pushing it and more endurance at the same time.

Best part of the run was in the beginning when Justice was playing with her bubbles. It was breezy enough and the wind from my "SPEED" (good grief that's funny) that she just had to hold the wand up and the bubbles blew themselves. I got a few smiles from drivers that saw me jogging along with bubbles trailing behind me. =o)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Your chariot awaits

For Mother's Day, my husband found me a single jogger. I never ever thought I would be excited to receive workout gear for any gift, and here I am, super excited over a jogging stroller. What happened to me? I'm not complaining. I love it!

About a month ago, we sold our Kelty double jogger on Craigslist. Don't get me wrong, we loved it! Until we put the kids in. At almost 100 lbs combined, with him weighing twice as much as she did- do the math on that: x + 2x=100. Yeah I'm a math geek like that, get over it. I digress. It was awkward and difficult to push in a straight line. It made it just not worth going out. I spent more time fighting the stroller than actually moving forward.

Plus, with Isaiah at school all day it was just ridiculous to plop Justice in there by herself. Same problem. The weight distribution was 0 on one side and 30 lbs on the other. Not to mention it looked ridiculous.

We found our 50% off stroller on Mother's Day. And I say 50% off not because it was on sale but because it is basically our double jogger cut in half. AMAZING! I snapped it up, eager to take her on our maiden voyage. All day yesterday Justice wanted to run but it just wasn't in our cards. Once I finished errand running and grocery shopping it was lunch time. Then it was her nap time. Then Isaiah came home from school. Bah. So today, we took off at around ten am for our journey out. I stopped about fifty times to adjust this or that. I moved my hands in about a hundred different positions and configurations. I tried running directly behind the stroller, off to the side, pushing it ahead of me...

Things I learned:

My driving force is my left arm. My right arm is totally useless when running.

Pushing a 30 lb kid plus a 20+ lb stroller is HARD!

A Penske truck driver will almost always honk at me. Grr.

My favorite body/hand/stroller configuration is my right hand on the left handlebar with my body off to the left of the stroller. Best stride for me, least shoulder fatigue, most strange looks from passers-by. Booya.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Dude, it's a race recap!

First and foremost, I hope everyone had a super duper Happy Mother's Day. If you're not a mom, I hope you had a great day celebrating the moms in your life. I had a great weekend. Let's rewind a few days, shall we?

Friday I picked up our race packets. I was a little bit disappointed at the fact that I only got a t-shirt and race bibs *more on that later*, but was really impressed at how organized everything was. Sped home, dropped the kiddos off with my Mom and headed out to a dinner function that we were invited to. Longest.Dinner.Ever. Not that it was bad, just long. Home at around ten (gah!) where I promptly shoved the kids into their beds and got our clothes ready for a quick and easy morning departure. Cue midnight, and I'm finally ready for bed. Why do I always do that?

Getting out the door Saturday morning was easy!! The kids outfits were on them and they were ready to go in mere minutes, as was I. Coordinating with all the people that were participating with us was harder than I expected. My in-laws were travelling about 45 minutes to get there. They had my sister-in-law who was going to be walking the 5k with the kids and my brother-in-law and his fiance. We also were meeting up with the runner friends of ours, T & J. We parked right next to T & J, but they had to pick up their bibs still so they were long gone before we got there. The in-laws were there, somewhere in the mass of people, and my brother-in-law (we'll call him TB) was still en route. As we walked along to the start line, we heard the announcer talking about the 5k runners starting at 7:45 instead of 7:30. WHAT? My husband gave me that look. Oops. All this time I was saying that the runners started at 7:50. That was the walkers time. I am so glad we arrived early and that there was a fifteen minute delay!!! We found my in-laws, T & J popped up a few minutes later, and TB & fiance were nowhere to be found. {They wound up finding the kids and s-i-l in time for the walk.} Mere moments later, they started counting down the runners. I kissed the kids and off we went!

I am surprised at how many people don't understand that there is a reason they put the yellow caution tape across the sides of the starting line. Do they think everyone bottlenecks at the starting line because they like feeling like cattle? Even my in-laws thought they were being sneaky by going off to the side but we called them back and told them that their chip wouldn't trigger unless they actually crossed the line. Dorks. Anyway, after bobbing and weaving through the beginning we finally fell into a good groove. I was running with J, who is so much fun! We were chit-chatting about all kinds of stuff. The boys were hanging out behind us. I'm sure for all kinds of reasons, one being that my husband hadn't run more than a half mile since October. I completely missed the mile marker but I felt great! I could tell that I was pushing myself hard to keep up with J, who I knew was holding back for me. Around probably the mile and a half mark I started lagging behind. I could see J just barely ahead of me, she kept looking back to see how close I was and then I saw her slow up big time. She wouldn't let me fall behind, she said. We passed the 2 mile marker which I missed again! Around a half mile later I started feeling really really really hot. My face felt super flushed and my stomach felt a teensy bit queasy. So I slowed up again. I pushed my visor up higher on my forehead so I could get some more cool air. I watched them get further and further away from me until I couldn't see them anymore. And then all of a sudden she was back!!

"You didn't have to come back for me" I said.

"I'm not trying to beat any records today", she said "And besides, it's easier to cross the finish line if you've got someone to do it with."

Love that girl. She pushed me the last quarter mile and told me that I needed to sprint and give it all I had when we passed that three mile marker. And so I did. It wasn't much, but it was everything. The announcer was calling out, "twenty more seconds if you want to finish under 34 minutes". I knew that with the delay in chip time, maybe, just maybe, if I finished under 34 minute clock time I would actually beat my goal of 33 minutes. Sputtering past the finish line, it read 33:53. Fingers crossed, I hoped my chip time would prove me victorious.

Race expo was awesome! Lots and lots of free goodies. I mean lots. Food, GoGirl, swag bags, coffee, keychains, magnets, chap stick, pink name it. Totally made up for what I thought was lacking at race packet pick up. =-P

Today I got the email with the link to where I could find my results. I typed in my name, waited for the page to load.......32:14......YEAH BABY!!! Smashed my goal.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Kettle Corn, I smite thee!

Yesterday I almost almost almost had a minor meltdown. I saved it at the last minute, but it was right there on the tip of reality. I planned on going to Cub Scouts as a family, and then running my perky little butt home from there. It's about 3.25 miles; perfect! (PS- By perky I mean me, not my butt. Oh no, not for many years now.) At about 4:45, Jacob called me and said he was still working and wouldn't be able to make it with us to the meeting. You know that feeling when you have your plans set and all of a sudden discover that that's not what you're doing? I was mad, then sad, then irritated, then just plain blah. I took off the running gear that I already had on. Threw them on the bed. Then realized, hmm, if I was going to run home from the meeting I can still run after the meeting as long as Jacob isn't home too much after we get back.

LUCKY for me....he pulled up as I was unbuckling Justice. So I set her down and yelled, "I'm going for a run!" as I dashed inside. I got dressed in record time and started stretching as the kids rode their bikes in the driveway. Off I went. I had some shin pain early on in the run which made me nervous, but it went away after the first half mile-ish. And then I just felt good. I decided to push myself a little bit harder since as my husband and I have discussed in the past, this is a pitfall of mine. I don't push myself nearly as much as I should. At least not as much as I need to to make myself faster. I think I'm afraid of having another asthma attack. Perhaps just plain afraid. Whatever the reason, I don't. So I pushed. Just a little bit. Just until I felt a little uncomfortable. I ran until I became nervous with the amount of grayness in the sky, then turned around.

I was ridiculously red-faced. I was breathing very hard. My lungs weren't happy with me at all. I was salty (this from my husband upon kissing my neck, promptly followed with, "wanna take a shower?" ha!). And I ran under an 11 minute mile. For me, this is newsworthy! My best 5k time was an 11:09 mile. And here I am, running not quite a 5k (2.7 miles) at a 10:40!?!?!?! A 10:40!! Freakin A folks, this is a big deal! I am more excited than ever to run the Susan G Komen 5k this weekend. I won't be quite as fast as the friends that we are "running it" with, but I won't be quite as slow as I was the last time I did one. I am excited to move forward and keep pushing myself to do better. It's funny how progress and results push you to keep going...

OMG and we worked a booth at the Dixon May Fair today. Seriously, I could eat kettle corn all freaking day long. I won't, but I'm just sayin. I could.....

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Yoga FUN

As you may have read in a previous post, I am incorporating yoga into my workout regimen. This has worked pretty well for me the first few times I did it. The first time I did it my daughter was napping. The next couple of times she hung out with me for just a few minutes and then wandered off to play in her bedroom. Today, was quite a different experience. For starters, Justice decided to hang out in front of me on my mat doing the moves with me. There is just not enough space on a yoga mat for two people, even if one of them is a mini person.

I got to downward facing dog and discovered this:

Well, hello Bruiser. He was jumping around, licking my face and trying to nibble at my nose. Good times. Not the best for my zen moments and getting lost in the poses. It's hard to breathe in and out in a controlled manner when you have a puppy in the face, lick, snort, sniff, nibble. Ahem, as if I can do that anyway.

So after pushing him away, I followed the instructions and transitioned into high plank position and discovered this in my face:

Now this is just ridiculous. Excuse me, little girl? As much as I love your little booty it is unacceptable for you to be right there, like that, in my way. How can I flooooow? Awkwardly, I made it through the move and back into downward facing dog when I discovered this:

And that is when I called it quits for the day. Mayhaps I'll try again later after he is crated for the night and she is having sweet dreams.

Besides, I've decided that I'll be running home from Isaiah's Cub Scout meeting tonight. It's a perfect 3.25 miles from our house. My kinda way to squeeze in a few miles! Woohoo! **Wanna guess how many mosquito bites I'll have before I get home?**

Monday, May 2, 2011

Beware of porta-potties!!

On Saturday we participated in the March of Dimes' March for Babies. Thousands of people were milling around the state capitol's front steps and there were about ten porta-potties to service alllllll those people. Naturally, pipsqueak pipes up that she has to use the bathroom reeeeaaalllyyyyyy bad. So off we go to stand in line. I gotta say, I'm kinda glad she did. While we were standing in line, almost our turn, a runner cruises by. He was in great shape, no shirt on, nice abs, headphones...I was checking out his form (yeah, that's it, his form) when all of a sudden *BAM* a lady opens her porta potty door right on him. I mean like, he ran into the opening door, pretty much the skinny part caught him just right. She froze with that look on her face like 'OMG what just happened." It was LOUD and he almost fell on the ground backwards but caught himself before he actually fell. And he kept running, didn't skip a beat. I don't know if he stopped around the corner to check out his wounds, but I'm sure he's bruised today.

That night, we were surprised when we visited my in-laws and they offered to have the kids overnight. Unfortunately, we were completely exhausted from The March for Babies and running our booth at Winters Youth Day and it was almost ten before we made it home so we couldn't do anything special. But we did get to sleep in the next morning which was amazing. I actually woke up at 7:30 to pee and let the puppy out but then I got back into bed until about 9. We also were able to go on a nice long bike ride that morning. We wound up meeting up with some good (child-less) friends of ours for a brunch at a delicious Mexican restaurant downtown. They had just finished a 10k that morning so we were a nice sweaty bunch LOL. I have never ridden my bike to get to a destination like that before so it felt pretty cool although my butt was definitely not happy with me. No bike shorts=ouch!

On the way there, we discovered that two more events were occurring in downtown- a concert held by a radio station and another walk at the Capitol. As we rode past the porta-potties my husband yelled back at me, "Watch for doors!" Haha, he's such a funny guy. This concert was sponsored by a local Hip-Hop/R&B station and I have never seen so much black eyeliner, hootchie wear, and hairspray in the light of day. I wish I had my camera, the people watching was AMAAAAZING!! On the way into town they hadn't let anybody in yet and the line stretched for blocks and blocks so we had prime observation going on.

In all, we rode a total of 10.25 miles which I think is pretty great considering I have ridden less than 100 yards over the past twelve or so years. I totally look forward to doing it again.

Do you enjoy bicycling? What other types of cross training do you do?