Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Advanced Marathoning It Is!

I'm feeling a blog post in me.  It's there.  Right on the surface.  Quite a bit going on in my head actually and I can't seem to decide if I feel like expressing myself on a deep level right now or keeping this light and breezy.  I have even been tagged a couple of times in a blog post going around where I am supposed to tell you some random things about myself and answer some questions.  Don't worry Lindsay and Beth, I haven't forgotten.  I've just been a little mentally tired.  Perhaps this kind of "busy head" calls for a random bulleted post instead of a well thought out "beginning middle end/deserves a title" post.  Bullets it is!  

  • I'm officially starting the 12 week marathon plan in this book above.  Yes, yes, I know...I was reading the book Run Faster by Brad Hudson and planning on using one of his plans.  However, I was just feeling a bit lost.  I hadn't even completed a full week of his training because at the beginning I was base building, then I switched things up so that I could try out a 10k, and then I was injured and now I just need a fresh start.  It works out perfectly.  Pfizinger happens to have a 12 week plan which means this week is a perfect week to start since it was 12 weeks to Boston.  I also love the way the plans are laid out and I'm finding the book very easy to breeze through.  Even his writing voice seems to click with me.  Plus, I hear lots of good things about it from others so this makes me happy. There are so many great plans out there and all of them should get you to your marathon ready to race.  For me, it meant finding something that just "felt" right.  I'm a feelings kind of person and this feels right so I'm going with it and not looking back.  Now if I can just stay injury free then I'll be all set!  
  • Injury.  Thankfully, my strains were not too serious and I haven't lost much time.  I caught them before they turned into a monster of an injury.  They feel much better right now even though I'm aware that I still need to be careful and continue to strengthen those areas and keep going to see the doc (more on this in another post too).  Unfortunately, the other side of my body has taken a hit as I mentioned in some of my previous posts.  I've still been feeling some pain and tightness but the past couple of days have felt really great. 
  • Being able to run 8 miles today at a relatively normal pace without too much discomfort (except for this weird foot pain that I won't even bore you with) felt so wonderful.  
  • Tomorrow I will be doing a threshold run of 10 miles with 5@15k-half marathon pace.  Not sure what that 5 miles will look like until I'm doing it.  I will go by how my body is feeling.  If it gives me the green light then I will GO GO GO with it.  
  • I should still hit 50-60 miles this week despite my bumps.  I'm thinking that sticking to the 55-70 range for the duration of my training will be smart.  No need to go a bit higher.  I'll even take it down if I need to.  
  • I'm not sure of my goals for Boston.  Honestly, I will need to really think about this one.  There is a lot that goes with this and I might be addressing it in another blog post.  For now, I'm going to keep my priorities straight, focus on keeping my body healthy, enjoy running because I love to run, train hard, keep things in perspective so that I don't lose sight of the life all around me that is so much more important than running and just enjoy the process.  
There are so many things I'd love to write about right now. But my bed is calling me.  Gotta get up early to fit my run in since my son is no longer taking naps and the chances of him doing anything remotely calm and quiet for the length of time it would take me to run 10 miles is just hilarious.  

Thank you for all the e-mails, personal comments, and overall support I've felt from so many of you lately.  I know I've been really lame at e-mail and blog reading but thanks for understanding.  

Happy Wednesday,

Friday, January 20, 2012

Brooks Running! And My Brooks Wish List.

If you would have found me three years ago and asked me what my favorite running shoe was, I probably wouldn't have had a definite answer.  Truth is, I just went with whatever I'd always worn until they went out of stock or didn't make them anymore.  Then I'd try another shoe based off a recommendation or review.  But I never really had a shoe I raved about or that I thought was PERFECT for me.  I didn't know what kind of runner I was when it came to all those runner terms...neutral, guidance, support, blah blah blah.  So when I began my journey in this crazy running blog world, I started to learn all about new shoes, gear, fuel and races that I had NEVER even heard of.  And I began my mission to find my perfect shoe.  I tried out some Mizuno Wave Riders.  They just never felt right.  Then I got board with trying out the Saucony Kinvaras and ended up injured.  They were not for me.  After that, I dappled in a few other brands but never felt truly satisfied.  And then I found the perfect shoe for me. It was love at first steps. The shoe that I will most likely always love. The shoe that started it all when it comes to my loyalty and love for Brooks shoes. 

What shoe could possibly be this good?  The Brooks Launch of course!  This shoe is seriously fantastic. Although, I'm trying to alternate the shoes that I wear so that I'm using my feet a bit differently during training, I've worn the Launch almost exclusively for training and racing. It's that good.  For me.  

Brooks Launch
It wasn't long after I fell in love with the Brooks Launch (Thanks to my friend Jenn who is a Brooks ID member), that I began to read more about the Brooks brand, vision and overall company.  The more I heard about Brooks and tried out their gear and shoes, the more I loved what I was seeing.  Not only do I love their shoes and gear that I have tried, but I love that Brooks is a company that seems to represent so many voices in the running community. The elite runners.  The every day runners. The new-to-running runners. The competitive runners.   I was particularly impressed with their Brooks Inspired Daily program where they sponsor athletes of all abilities.  What a great way to really give the every day runner a voice...sort of a grass roots way of spreading the word about Brooks. One thing all the Brooks ID members seem to have in common is that  they are passionate, strong, inspiring runners that love to run, love Brooks and can't help but share their love for running and Brooks with others.  It was definitely because of these people that love Brooks so much that I was excited to try out Brooks for the first time.  I'm so glad that I've discovered such a great running company and I can't wait to try out some more Brooks gear and test out some different kinds of shoes. 

I decided to do some online shopping last night since I'm wanting a few new pieces of running gear and I'm hoping to find a pair of shoes for racing in.  Right now, I'm still in "window shopping" mode so I have lots of things on my Brooks Wish List.  I thought I'd share with you some of the things that I'm thinking look fabulous (I won't be getting all of them at once).  I would love to hear from you if you've tried any of these items.  What did you think of them?  

Shoe Wish List:  

These shoes are a must-have!  I have not tried the Pure Flows but I know lots of you that have and I hear nothing but great things! 
Brooks Pure Flow

Some performance shoes on my wish list that I'd like to try out:  
Brooks Pure Connect

Brooks T7 Racer

Brooks Racer ST 5

I hear good things about these shorts.  They have two pockets in the back and one in the front so they sound like they'd be good for long races.  Can't have enough pockets!  I also love the color choices.  The prints all go along with the Brooks tops.  I'm  not always a color/print coordinated person but this could be fun!
HVAC Synergy Short
I hear that this tank has some extra padding for those of us that are not well endowed.  I have nothing.  My Brooks Glycerin bra has done wonders so hopefully this top will be similar.  And it goes with those shorts above!  Oh, AND it has a cool pocket on the center back...perfect for racing.  One more extra pocket for those gels that I end up stuffing in my bra.  No more bra stuffing in a marathon for me!
Glycerin Print Support Tank II

Women's Versatile EZ Racer Back
Brooks Glycerin Support Tank

A few other things that I don't NEED but I'd love to try out.  I could surely use a good jacket to run in.  Especially one that can handle that Oregon rain that we get so much of.  
Women's Essential Run Jacket

Women's Nightlife Jacket II

Women's Essential Run LS 1/2 Zip

Brooks Infiniti Tight
I'm a big fan of vests.  I only have one running vest but I wear it for almost every long run outside.  This one looks way cooler than mine.  And it has a pocket for my iPod as well as fuel.  
Women's Essential Run Vest
I think I would really love these babies.  I really like a good short like this and the boy short seems to be one of my favorite types of shorts, swim suits or undies.  
Brooks Epiphany Boy Short

Brooks Versatile 3.5" Low Rise Knit Short
This Equilibrium shirt could quite possibly become one of my FAVORITES if it is a good as it looks.  It looks long too...I like this!
Equilibrium LS
Equilibrium LS in White
This short also has some great reviews.  It has plenty of pockets too! 
Women's Infiniti Short II
So, there's my Brooks shopping "wish list" for the next year. Thanks for letting me share with you some of the things I love. I could add so many more things like gloves, hats, headbands, etc. One thing at a time or I won't have any money to eat.  For now, I'll probably stick to a new pair of Pure Flows, a pair of shorts, and a shirt.  

What is your favorite piece of Brooks gear?  
Do you run in Brooks or wear Brooks gear?  
What do you think I should get from my list here? 


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Picking Up the Slack

My husband travels from time to time.  Sometimes it is for an entire week and other times only a short weekend or a couple of week nights.  No matter how long he is gone, it always means that I'm the only parent on duty.  Just me and our three rowdy kids.  Ready for a good ol' time.  Long days. Marathon bedtime routines that usually end up in some sort of argument over who wanted to pee first, what headband belongs to whom, or why each of my daughters thinks the other one is the meanest sister in the world.  All this while chasing down my naked-from-the-waste-down two year old son who is singing the word penis in every octave he is capable of hitting.  After all, penis is one of his favorite words. It is right there in the favorite word bucket along with Bad and Stupid.  You know, words his sisters have taught him.  The ones that get a reaction out of their reactor of a mom that knows perfectly well that when you react to something, it usually makes it worse and gives negative behavior MORE power and reinforcement.  But it is what it is. After I finally wrestle my little guy down, put him on the toilet to pee, slide on his princess pull-ups (leftovers from sisters) just in case their is an accident even though he has been dry for weeks, say prayers and give last minute kisses, I AM SPENT!  Done!  I don't care about the blue trail of toothpaste lining my sink or the dribble of pee on the toilet seat.  I overlook my nice decorative towels in heaps on the bathroom floor even after I've folded them numerous times throughout the day. And the sink full of dishes and food all over my floor aren't even noticeable anymore. I just want to rest.  

Picking up the slack!

Anytime you take one working part away from a unified system, someone or something ends up picking up the slack in order to keep the system working efficiently.  Eventually, things end up breaking, mothers have break downs, or things end up changing.  

This is what is happening to my body this week.  As many of you know, the left side of my body has been having a few issues.  I have been working through a hamstring strain and an abdominal strain.  Nothing too serious but it has still been frustrating and my body hasn't been able to perform like I'd hope it to.  Because of this, my right leg has been "Picking Up The SLACK!"  Apparently, it is fed up and is ready for its significant other to be home from vacation and start pulling its weight again.  

Good News:  My hamstring and abdominal strains are healing up nicely.  

Bummer for Today News:  My right leg, the one picking up the slack, is refusing to do anything today.  It has declared today a non-performance day.  It officially decided it was done for a bit after my hill workout yesterday.  I was almost done with my last repeat and my right leg said "HELL NO, I WON'T GO!"  No kidding.  It just ran out of fizzle and I knew that if I pushed it one step further that I'd be injured.  

So I listened.  I'm still listening.  I dished out some cash for a sports massage and let my awesome sports chiropractor torture me with his graston tools. Today, there wasn't much running.  At least not at a decent pace or without that quiet little voice of pain yelling at me. Warning me to stop...or else.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, I'm listening body.  Yes, you've been picking up the slack.  I get it.  I'll take it easy.  Hopefully tomorrow will be better.  Because I'm ready to run fast.  

In the meantime, I'm still Joyful about living.  Life is good.  Especially when you open a package from Lucy and get to sample some new Lucy running shorts.  I didn't even wait to change out of my other clothes before trying them on.  And apparently, I thought it was necessary to lift up my shirt so you could get a full view of the shorts.  I'll let you know more about the shorts soon.  AND those rad Keen boots!  Oh, you bet I'll be talking about those babies!  LOVE them!  
Peace Out,

Monday, January 16, 2012

Inspiring Woman Inspiring Women #2

Remember this?  Yeah, yeah, yeah, so I may have started something and then dropped the ball a little.  I do that sometimes.  Anyway, for those of you that don't know what this is about, you can get a fill in by checking out Inspiring Woman Inspiring Women #1.  

For those of you that do remember this little thing, it has been awhile!  It's not that I haven't been inspired.  I have.  Especially tonight.  This Inspiring Woman Inspiring Women post will be short and sweet but the two women I'm sharing with you tonight are ladies that are worth checking out if you don't already know about them.  They are both gifted runners that just ran a pretty stellar marathon!  And they certainly have inspired me greatly.  In fact, after reading their race reports tonight, I'm all charged up and excited to run tomorrow.  


It hasn't been too terribly long that I've been reading Tia's blog Runner Mom but I've come to look forward to her posts and reading about her training.  I have often thought how nice it would be to go on a run or two with her since we seem to have a few things in common as well as pretty compatible running pace. Tia's got me beat though.  She recently ran the Houston Marathon and met her A goal of breaking 3:20!  Way to Go Tia!  Not only is she an inspiration as a runner, but Tia inspires me with her faith, positive attitude that shines through her blog, and with how well she seems to be balancing motherhood with training.  She just wrote a really great race recap that I plan on going back to reread. 


Talk about some raw natural talent!  Gracie, from How I complicated my life today, continues to amaze me.  I don't read a ton of blogs these days.  In fact, I'm pathetic with blog reading so I have a lot to catch up on Gracie. And trust me, after her 3:09 marathon this past weekend, I plan on reading closely to see what exactly this girl has been eating for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  Kidding.  Kind of.  Reading Gracie's race recap tonight made me want to just stand up and cheer!  And, Gracie, if that is what you call hitting the wall, then WATCH OUT WORLD!  Here comes Gracie!  I've been reading her blog for awhile now and she inspires me for more than her running.  She usually makes me laugh and I'm drawn to her sense of self-confidence.  Thanks for sharing your life with us Gracie!  

As I said in my last Inspiring Woman Inspiring Women post (the first and only):

"So, here's my invitation to you to join me!  Grab this picture and link up (until I figure out how to create a button...anybody??)  and choose a few women bloggers that have inspired you and that you are willing to share with US!  Even posting a picture, or just a sentence about these inspiring women in your life...easy, meaningful, AND the rest of us get to meet new and inspiring women in the blog world. Let me know if you do it so that I can link you on my next IWIW post!" 

Maybe I won't wait so long this time before I do my IWIW #3.  In the meantime, thanks for sticking around even though I'm a horrible blogger these days. This marathon training and motherhood gig takes a lot of time and leaves me pretty pooped at the end of a day. 


Like It's Your Job

A job worth doing is a job worth doing well.

Last night I read a blog post that got me thinking a lot about what training is for me.  I'm not an elite runner.  I don't get paid to do this.  I'm not anywhere near being an olympic qualifier. I'm no longer running and racing for a college team.  It isn't my job.  But I find myself training like its my job sometimes.  I find myself getting so wrapped up in my training and goals and it becomes so important to me that I can lose sight of the big goal ahead when things get hard. Like so many others, I get discouraged when I hit roadblocks like injury, lags in energy, and just forgetting WHY I'm doing all of this.  After all, running isn't my job. Or is it? 

What's a Job Anyway?  
I suppose the traditional definition of a job would be something that we get paid to do. A regular form of employment.  Something we do as a way to provide for our lifestyle or part of our regular living.  We get something from it in return for our work.  Some of us love our job and some of us hate it.  Some have a job because they want a job and some have a job because they need it to live.  No matter what, those of us that are successful in life, take our jobs pretty seriously.  We commit to it.  And the people that are good at their job, do it with a great attitude and work ethic.  They bring their "A" game to what they do.  These are the kind of people that go far with their jobs.  The kind of people that go FAR with LIFE! The kind of people that make something with what they have.  

Getting past the roadblocks.
I have to admit that I've been feeling slightly discouraged about my training the past few days. My abdominal strain has been a road block in this long marathon road and it has been several weeks now where I just haven't felt the "groove". My body just isn't moving like it should. I've felt lost with my training and desperately wishing that I had a coach to just do the "thinking work" for me and help me get to the end. The end result of all this training seems so far away and I've found myself making deals with myself to just settle for getting to Boston instead of truly training for a personal record or anything out of my comfort zone.  I've wanted to "play it safe" and stop taking things so seriously. And I've found myself with a head full of self doubt and negatively tainted perceptions. Most of all, I've been questioning all the time and energy I put into this training.  Reading, logging, researching, strength work, diligence with nutrition, and so much more.  Hours and hours of mental and physical work.  Although most days, my training is fun and I feel positively driven and focused on the goal at hand, I've recently been asking myself "Why?".  Why am I doing all of this?  It isn't my JOB!  I'm not getting paid to do all of this. And what is the point anyway? 

Perhaps it is my job.  Or I should think of it as such.
After reading Meg's Suck It Up and Get It Done rant last night, I woke up realizing that, right now, Training is my job!  If it is worth doing (which it is) then it is worth doing well and treating it like it is my job. Not my main job by any means.  In fact, not even in the top of my priorities.  But still a job of sorts. A job I enjoy. I may not be an Olympic qualifier or a labeled "elite" runner.  I may not be breaking any records or winning many races.  But when I do train like it is my job...with enthusiasm, hard work, dedication, a positive attitude, a proactive approach...I DO GET PAID!  When I bring my "A" game to my training in the same way that I have always brought to anything that I do...undergraduate and graduate school, teaching, being a mother, friendships, high school and college track and cross country...I am paid in SUCCESS.  My Success.  Feelings of accomplishment and pride.  Seeing how far that I have come.  

We all train for different reasons.  In a sense, training does become a job if we take it seriously.  And it should. It doesn't matter if you're a 10 minute per mile pace or a 6 min per mile pace.  What matters is that you are training hard and "working" to be the best that you can be.  If a goal matters to you and If you really want to achieve greatness and conquer your goals, You HAVE to treat your training like its a job.  It doesn't have to be a full-time job or one of those jobs that we dread.  Hopefully it will be a JOYFUL job most of the time.  A job we look forward to putting time into.  A job that we benefit from.  A job we are fortunate enough to have!  And a job that PAYS in more ways than one.  

So, I'm choosing to shake off this discouragement that I've been feeling lately.  I'm choosing to think of it as just another bump in the road.  And I'm choosing to take my training and healing its my JOB (second to motherhood of course)!  As with all the jobs I have had in life, I will choose to give my "A" game, not settle for what just "gets me there", and strive to be extraordinary.  My extraordinary.  I will be my own best self.  And look how I will get paid to do it:

  • Energy and feelings of accomplishment
  • A happy disposition that benefits my family
  • A great body and health
  • Modeling a goal driven life for my children
  • Brooks sponsorship 
  • The joy and satisfaction that comes from reaching a personal goal or knowing that I pushed myself hard
  • Great SLEEP from pushing my body
  • Endorphins=happy pills
  • Inspiration
So, Let's DO THIS!  Anything worth doing, is worth doing well, right? Like it's your job. A Joyful job that you love. A job worth getting up for. 

I'm adding this comment after this post was published.  Thank you Annette@(Running) in the Right Direction!  You seem to get exactly what I'm saying:

"I love the post. I took that you meant job as something that you care a lot about, put effort into...take time with. It takes work. Work=job. The only thing is so many equate the word job something you HAVE to do..and don't particulary WANT to do. I like your theories...doing a job you love! Isn't that what we are all searching for? Now if we could all be the elite, get all those perks you wrote AND get paid...that would be ideal!!!!"

 How do you get PAID to train hard and work towards your goals?  


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Let's Talk Training Runninghood

For those of you that read this blog mostly for the "hood" part and want to see more motherhood stuff...I did write a more motherhood related post yesterday. I suppose you could include it with training for running too since parenting my two year old son is quite the cross training.  For those of you that have mentioned wanting to hear more about my training and workouts, this one is for you.  Nothing too exciting really.  

Training for:  Well, this is obvious for most of you but for those that are new, I'm training for the Boston Marathon in April.  

Training Plan:  So far it has been mostly an Amanda plan with lots of base building.  I'm using the bones of Brad Hudson's Run Faster plan.  Today was the first day of week 8 of a 20 week plan.  I have not officially followed a full week yet since I was base building and then had to slow down because of a hamstring and lower abdominal strain.  

How's the strain?  Feeling a lot better with my hamstring.  No pain here when I run now and I'm feeling myself getting stronger.  My abdominal area is still a little rough.  Hopefully seeing my sports Chiropractor (he's really amazing) and having him do painful Graston therapy along with stem and laser therapy will get me feeling great in no time.  I've just got to watch the way I'm moving and lifting my son around.  I've also got to be more diligent in STRENGTH training.  

What am I doing for strength training?  Not a whole lot right now.  Wish I would have built up some great strength this summer by following a weight program for my total body.  But I didn't so now I'm just doing lots of planks, push ups, isolated leg work without weights, and thinking Core Core core in addition to working a bit on my legs and arms.  

Goals for Boston?  Honestly, I'm not entirely sure where I'm at and where I'm going.  It is hard to make a time goal right now since I feel so far from where I hope to be by the time Boston comes.  I'd love to break 3:20 and PR but as the weeks go by, I will be able to more accurately assess whether or not a more ambitious goal is in order.  Otherwise, my main goal is to show up on race day INJURY free, feeling strong and healthy, and ready to enjoy my weekend with friends and my husband.  

How many miles a week am I running?  Before these strains, I was close to 70 miles a week. It was time consuming but fun. This mileage was mostly base building with some speed work.  Last week was an easier week at 50 and honestly, I think that keeping my mileage right around 60-70 is a great place for me if I can stay injury free.  

How do I fit my runs in? Time management!  I'm not any busier than you, you and you.  :) Just have a different lifestyle and I make it work.  Having three young kids is a circus act most days but I find ways to make it work.  I just recently got my first treadmill so a lot of my runs are on that.  I also find a day or two a week to hit the gym when my girls are in school and my son feels up to going to the gym day care for a couple hours.  He loves this and so do I.  I feel very blessed to have this as an option. Getting in my runs BEFORE my husband comes home at night is a new thing in my running life and it makes all the difference in the world when it comes to enjoying training.  The idea of hitting the gym at 7 p.m now just makes me tired thinking of it.  This year is so much easier than ever before when it come to training for a marathon and being a mom if I consider that I have more time to workout during the day.  Still trying to make a point to stay present with my kids and make being a mother my number #1 focus.  It is easy to get distracted with other things and lose sight of what is most valuable to me.  

Most recent workout:
Today's plan called for 16 miles with last 30 minutes hard.  I really didn't do this right since I probably started off too fast instead of working my way up gradually. 

  •  I ran the first 6 on the TM ranging the incline between -2 and 4 and varying the speed between 7:40's and 8:34 pace.  
  • I ran the first part on the treadmill because it was pouring cold rain outside and I just wasn't up for a hilly, windy, rainy run.  
  • while on the TM, I watched Ryan Hall videos on youtube.  Inspiring.  
  • The hilly, windy rainy run happened anyway since I left for the last 10 miles outside because there was a break in the rain...until I got outside.  Oh well. 
  • 10 miles outside were pretty good.  I didn't do last 30 minutes hard but mile 12 and 13 felt hard for me after the other miles being low 8's and high 7's.  MIle 12 was 7:22 and mile 13 was mostly uphill (quite the hill too) in 7:54 and felt really hard.  I was happy to break 8 on that stupid hill.  Then my lower abs hurt too much for comfort so I took last 2 miles easy @ 8:30 and 8:24.  
  • Total 16.46 in 8:01 avg pace.  
Best workout this week:
I've been taking it pretty easy the last two weeks so that I can heal these strains so when my 2x15 min@ half marathon workout came up this week, I thought that I might just do them at marathon pace so that it would be easier on my body.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was stronger than I thought.  It ended up being a nice 9 mile run that made me feel good about my healing.  This is how it went down:

2 miles easy
15 min @ 6:58 (last half mile @ 6:31 pace)
2-4 min AR going down to the gym childcare to take my son pee
15 min @ 6:53
3ish miles easy

Workout I'm most looking forward to next week:
I'm really excited about my threshold workout next Thursday.  2 miles easy; 5 miles @ half marathon pace (will try around a 6:53 pace even though I have not proven that I can run a half marathon at this pace); 2 miles easy.  I really do like doing this workout on the TM.  So much easier for me than on the road even though some would highly disagree.  Others would also say that doing them on the road is better for you to get your body used to running this pace away from the TM.  I would agree here.  I'm not sure where I will do this workout but since running on the road isn't really an option for me all the time, I will probably have to do the TM. And I usually put it at a 1% incline with the 6:53 pace (or whatever pace) even though apparently this 1% rule isn't really agreed upon by everyone. I like how it translates to the road after training on the TM at 1%.  

Fueling:  I experimented with fueling today.  Ate eggs with veggies and toast for breakfast with my coffee.  Then at mile 5.5 and 11.5 I had one of these:

These have OMG caffeine Jenn!  :)  I have to say that these did work in giving me energy and making me feel good.  However, they are not the easiest for me to get down.  They are more watery than the other gels I've tried and I had to play tricks with myself to swallow it.  When I got home, I ate cottage cheese, broccoli, half a tuna sandwich and some chocolate milk.  Oh and I drank some water with some Hammer Endurolytes Fizz tablets in there.  All this while watching the end of the women's Olympic Trial marathon.  So inspiring.  Oh, and then I took a cold bath.  Not fun.  

Next time I do a long run, I think I will go back to my new favorite gel.  I thought it was a Hammer product but after doing a google search for an image of it, I realize it is a Clif product.  So yummy! A much thicker consistency but it was like eating real food.  Almost like frosting.  And 99% organic...that sounds nice.  

I'm a bit tired but I'm going to try getting myself geared up for a date night with my husband since our sister-in-law is visiting and we really should take advantage of the fact that we have an adult in the house when the kids go to bed.  I won't last long though.  Maybe a beer or two and then this lady is going to be hitting the pillow.  

Who watched the Olympic Trials today?  Who were you rooting for?  
Any exciting races this weekend?  

Good luck to all of you running in Houston tomorrow!!


Friday, January 13, 2012

Two Year Old BOY. No Wonder I Run.

I don't know how many times I've tried to sneak a few minutes this week to write down some of my thoughts in a coherent post.  But just as I start to get a flow going and get some of that Runninghood mojo flowin', my writing wheels come to a screeching halt by 

full of life, 
ready to take on the world, 


penis grabbing, 
potty mouth,
gum swiping (and swallowing),
lipstick borrowing,

Yep, that would be lipstick (MY Lipstick) on his face.

too smart for his own good,
flash of 


He starts his day with a BANG and he doesn't slow down until he crashes somewhere. Or into something.  This is usually at night but since his nap boycott, we've found him once or twice passed out...almost as if he were frozen in his action. 

Gosh, I love this little guy.

So Tired.  

And Humbled Daily by this child that seems to push every last button and tap into every last bit of energy that I have.  This two-year old boy train is a way different ride than the two-year old girl train was.  And combining it with the four-year old emotional girl train...well, woooo weeee!  I need my marathon training just to keep me SANE.  But it really isn't working because on any given day, I'm pretty CRAZY.  
Pulling my hair out.
THAT MOM with crap all over her face and shirt,
You know, the one that can't control her kid in the store.
The mom that is basically wearing a sign that says "Do as I say not as I Do" since she is yelling at her kid to stop yelling and use an inside voice. 

The mom that has obviously run out of tricks about a week ago or just too tired to use them and now just tries desperately to convince her toddler and everyone else that she really is the one in control even if she doesn't believe it. 
Yep, that's me. 

But life is still good.  Just busy.  My bundle of boy blesses me greatly and, as all my children do, teaches me about myself and all the riches that life has to offer.  I wouldn't trade my days with him for all the money in the world. 

I love you my sweet boy.   Thank you for adding color to my life.  You are a blessing.  

This was my bear when I was a little girl.  

On a running note, things are still on the slow side since I'm trying to go easy until my abdominal and hamstring strains are better.  I ran 50 miles this week and took today off completely so hopefully tomorrow's long run will go well. I did have a fairly strong threshold workout this week and I was pleasantly surprised to find myself running faster than I thought without pain.  Wahoo! For now, I've been logging my workouts in my running journal.  I've been pretty emotional lately and it has been nice to just keep my training and my feelings in a personal place until I can figure out something like Running Ahead or Daily Mile without it turning into another form of social media or more reasons to be on the computer.  Less computer time is better for me so for now my running journal is serving me well.  I will post training on here too.  

  • I hope to get back to 60-70 miles per week either next week or the week after depending on how my strains heal up.  
  • I want to take more time for strength work.  Definitely core work like planks, push-ups, scissors, etc.  but also some leg and arm work. 
  • Trying to balance outside running with treadmill.  If the weather continues to be as lovely as it has been, I won't have a problem with this.  
  • I am really regretting the trip to the grocery store last night.  Note to self:  Next time you need tampons at 10:00 at night you should probably send your husband.  A tired, hungry, hormonal, PMS laden woman has NO business in a quiet kid-free grocery store.  She will surely come home with more than just a box of tampons.  She might just bring home a large bag of salt and vinegar potato chips, some Twix bars, gummy bears and cheetos (crunchy of course) and she will probably eat almost every last bit of them before bed and then feel like crap the next day.  Pretty sure that this is NOT the kind of fueling and recovery Raina was talking about in THIS GREAT POST.  

More on running next time.  

Yesterday was a sunshine, blue skies, Colorado-feelin', happy feet kind of day for a run.  

I found a new hill for short hill sprints if I ever pick those up like my plan calls for.  


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Bikini Ready? Graston? Laser? Verbal Filter? Oh My!

"It's only awkward if you make it that way." I've heard this a lot in my life.  The only problem is that I do make things awkward.  So much of my life is lived awkwardly. In a good way.  The thing is, I'm just being normal old Amanda.  I say what I think, laugh at things that might not really be that funny to anyone else, and say things that many might consider to be inappropriate.  I can be quite impulsive and most people would agree that "verbal filter" and "Amanda" are NOT words that go together.  I like to think of myself as endearing and candid. Refreshing even.  Ha!  

I guess today was one of those situations that I made awkward.  For pretty much the entire chiropractic clinic.  You see, I went in to get my buns checked out since I've been having a lot of pain lately in my lower left buns/upper hammy.  I've also felt a fair amount of pain in my pelvic bone area when I wake up in the mornings.  I've been through this drill before...going to the sports chiropractor.  

What I expected:

  • Stim therapy and ultrasound
  • Probably some painful Graston therapy
  • Maybe some marching in place and mild adjustments
To prepare, I did the usual:
  • Wore short shorts under my pants
  • Shaved my legs
  • Made sure I was wearing clean socks and/or had my toenails know, the usual "I care what people think" side to Amanda.  I like to think of it as courtesy.  
What I didn't think of doing:  
  • Trim the Bikini area.  (UM , Because it is January.  It isn't bikini season.  I don't feel like I have to be trim and fabulously sexy down there for my husband.  I've been married for 8 years...I'm not single and on the market...landscaping is not on the top of my priorities!)    

Note:  Now before you let your imaginations run away with you, I'm not a sasquatch by any means.  I actually would be just fine in a bikini right now.  I just like to make things awkward remember? Like right now.  In telling you this. And I really don't even care that much.  

So, when my doc told me that I had an abdominal strain in addition to a hamstring strain and he would need to do some laser therapy in addition to some graston therapy (a.ka torture) on my pelvic region, the first thing I thought about was:

"Holy Heck!  What is the state of my BEAV right now?!  I mean, really?!!  I didn't think I'd have to be bikini ready. How embarrassing!"  Okay, so a little vain maybe.  

Most normal people would leave it at that.  The internal dialogue.  But not me.  I lack that filter remember?  So, in typical Amanda fashion, I say something like:

"Wow, I didn't think I'd need to be ready for bikini season.  I've been married for 8 years after all.  I'm not single and on the market. Gee....blah blah blah."  Yup. Pretty awkward on my part.  

Doc:  "I didn't think I'd need to hire an arborist!  I'll get one of the girls to do your laser therapy."  As he leaves I hear laughter among the clinic workers.  Yes, that would be that weirdo filter-lacking, emotionally unstable (when I tore my hammy completely a year or so ago, I was just a tad distraught) lady.  Again, I'd like to think that they love me for this. I certainly provide them with someone to make fun of later...this beats working in a boring clinic all day with boring normal people that control their inner thoughts and emotions, right?!  

So then Amanda was done talking about her Beav.  That was that.  Right?  Wrong.  I then proceeded to chat it up with every other person that came into tape me and do my ultrasound/stim therapy.  All this talk and it really wasn't even bad at all.

Note to self:  "Nobody cares about your untidy trim job Amanda!  And nobody wants to hear you talk about how long you've been married and the fact that it isn't bikini season.  Nobody cares.  AWKWARD!"  

Good News:  

  • I'm done with my awkward appointment.
  • My beav is really only small steps away from walking out on the white sands of Hawaii.  
  • I caught this before it got too bad.  I just have to take it easy for a week or so and continue therapy.
  • My 2 year old son sat through 1 1/2 hours of clinic time.  I am so proud of him.  Definitely required some "mommy tricks" on my part so I'm proud of myself too!
  • Even though I can't run 70 miles this week (or shouldn't), I can still run easy miles and 50 miles this week is better than NOTHING!  :)  
Bad News:
  • No racing this weekend as I had secretly planned.  Was determined to have a good race and run that 41 something 10k like I know I can do.  But now I know one reason why things have been so hard for body isn't working right for a reason! 
  • Graston therapy hurts like a _____ (you fill in the blank).  I will have bruises all over!  Good thing it isn't bikini season!

Do you make things awkward for yourself?  What is a most embarrassing moment for you?  This wasn't embarrassing for me.  Just a typical day in the life of Amanda.  :)  I have many many embarrassing moments though.