Monday, January 30, 2012

Tagged x3

I got tagged for the 11 random things that's been going around the interwebs by both  XLMIC  at Taking it On and Beth at Yes Folks. I Run Like a Girl - and also tagged for 7 random things by Carrie at Family, Fitness, Food.  So, here's one big long post of randomness....
Here are the rules:
1. Post these rules
2. You must post 11 random things about yourself
3. Answer the questions set for you in their post
4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer
5. Go to their blog and tell them you’ve tagged them
6. No stuff in the tagging section about you are tagged if you are reading this. You legitimately have to tag 11 people! 

11 random things about yours truly:
  • I have a scar under my eye from my my sister dropping a can of chicken chow mein on my face (I was laying on the floor and she was walking by and dropped it -she claims it was an accident)- 4 stitches.
  •  I've never seen Jaws or any of the Godfather movies - this boggles my husband's mind.
  • My mother used to dress my sisters and I alike when we went on trips so she could find us easily - blue and white striped Osh Kosh overalls with red turtlenecks.  We were patriotic little things.  She thought it was so cute she got a portrait of us wearing the outfit:
  • My appendix ruptured when I was a senior in high school.  After surgery and a week in the hospital where I was still not getting better, they realized they didn't get it all out and had to go back in again.
  • I left college short of graduating by one class in my minor (English) - I finally finished the class 10 years later when I was 8 months pregnant with my son - my belly was so big I had to sit sideways in those little desks. 
  • My favorite vacation ever was camping around the island of Kauai for 10 days with my hubby (we rented a room for 2 nights, but otherwise camped).   Waking up next to the ocean is pretty awesome.
  • I've run Hood to Coast since 1996 (missing a few years due to pregnancy and not getting in) - I completely took it for granted and never realized it was a bucket list item for so many people until I started reading blogs. 
  • I really think Valentine's day is a silly holiday.
  • I was born in LA but only lived there a few weeks before we moved to Spokane, WA.  We moved to Oregon when I was 5.
  • My secret dream is to be a farmer.  If it were financially feasible I'd quit my job and attempt to grow most of our food on my parent's property (my back yard isn't quite big enough!).  Someday.... 

11 Questions from XLMIC
  1. What is your 'comfort food'?  Macaroni and Cheese, hands down. 
  2. Do you exercise better when you are angry or happy?   Happy - although exercise can help me sort out being angry, so in that sense maybe that's better.
  3. Have you ever done anything to the point of puking?  Yes. What?  Let's just say there was tequila involved.... 
  4. Any embarrassing nicknames in your past? Spill it. My dad calls me "kook".  I think it's a term of endearment(?).
  5. Guilty movie pleasure?  Grease and/or Footloose.
  6. Do you like or dislike these tagging memes?  Like.  Although now it's giving me a complex that I haven't lived an interesting enough life to keep coming up with interesting random stuff. :)
  7. Why do you run? (might seem like a stupid question, but I'm curious)  No short simple answer to this:  Sanity, sense of accomplishment, connection with other runners, etc.
  8. Would you rather be rich or famous?  Rich.
  9. If you could go anywhere tomorrow without any worries (everything would be taken care of perfectly for the duration) where would you go,  Australia
  10. with whom and  - family
  11. for how long?   At least a few months (preferably for our winter/their summer!).
11 Questions from Beth: 
  1. What is one bad habit you want to break?  I drink WAY too much coffee and way to little water.
  2. What is the best compliment you have ever received?  I don't know if this was my best compliment ever, but my husband called me bad-ass after my last marathon, and that had me grinning ear to ear for about a month afterwards. 
  3. If you were stranded on a desert island and had a case of food -- only one type of food -- what would it be?  Peanut butter.
  4. If you could have a beer with any person (living or dead) who would it be?  Julia Child - not because I'm a great chef or even want to be, but I read her memoir and she seemed super cool.
  5. What is your biggest pet peeve?  Dog owners who don't pick up after their dogs.
  6. Favorite song of all time?   Landslide - Stevie Nicks version
  7. Guilty pleasure song? (You know - that one you rock out to when no one else is listening...)  Lose Yourself - Eminem 
  8. Favorite vacation location?  Kauai, HI - although I think Lake Tahoe is pretty awesome as a location too.
  9. Are you a re-reader or one-and-done?  Re-reader for sure.
  10. What is the career you secretly dream about starting when you retire from your current job?   See above: my secret aspiration is to be a farmer.
  11. The place you wish you were right now, instead of being at a computer?  Anywhere tropical - Mexico, Jamaica, Hawaii....any of those will do!
My questions:

What's your favorite race distance? 
Do you have any "bucket list" races?
What's your favorite holiday?
Where were you born?
Why do you blog?
What is the last book you read?
Any strange fears/phobias?
What's your vacation philosophy regarding exercise?  Make sure to fit it in or give yourself a break?
Any bad habits you're trying to change?
What was the last movie that made you cry? (or tv show or song or whatever).
What accomplishment are you most proud of?

And now the tags - if you've already been tagged on one of these things don't feel obligated - you're off the hook!
A So-Called Runner
Mommy Run Fast!
Cows and Lasers and Everything In Between
From Couch to Iron Woman
Hungry, Healthy, Happy
Mom to Marathon
Nette on her way...
Sarah Fitness
The Running Paintbrush
Will Run for Coffee
Pain, Pride and Perseverance

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Five!

yay for Friday!

1) Saw this on FB yesterday - this will make me re-think that next drive thru meal!

 "Food" that doesn't decompose - scary!  I guess a doctor put these out to illustrate the lack of real food in fast food joints.  Seriously - what's in there?  Plastic?  It hasn't changed at all in almost 2 years...!!

2)  On that note - I was perusing the website 100 Days of Real Food - which is a website about a family who took a 100 day "real food" (aka no processed) pledge and has now made it a lifestle.  It's pretty interesting, so I tried out one of the recipes...BIG thumbs up from me and the hubs!  We made the Flank Steak Fajitas - oh my god YUMMM- and so easy, just throw everything in the slow cooker and there ya go.  They looked like this picture from the website, minus the cilantro sprigs because I didn't have 'em...
Definitely looks more appetizing than that first picture, huh?

3)  Running - I've been doing my little runs (3 - 3.5 miles/2x week) and things are good for the most part - but I felt a little twinge in my foot the other day, so I'm icing again along with all the stretching I was doing anyway.  I think it's nothing, but I'm kind of paranoid now so I'm taking every little thing seriously.  I'm still feeling optimistic about it.

4) Here's a question for ya - Relay Vs. Marathon -  which is harder?  I have this debate with my friend every so often - she says relay and I say marathon.  I usually run one relay a year and can run really well (for me) and not even be that sore afterwards- but a marathon is way more taxing physically for me.   I think for a lot of people this might come down to the ability to function well on little sleep and in cramped quarters at that - which I know for some people can make a relay really miserable.  It doesn't seem to bother me too much (at least not until after the race!), but a marathon is such a concentrated effort for an extended period of time - it's just grueling.  For those of you who have done both a marathon and a relay - what do you think is harder?  I'm curious to hear what you all think...

5)  Biggest Loser.  Wow, there was a lot of eye rolling in this episode, wasn't there?  Bob rolling his eyes at Dolvett.  Everyone rolling their eyes at Chris when she wanted to go home.  And then there's Conda whose eyes are perpetually spinning in an eye roll.   I was SO happy that she got kicked out of the gym.  I don't think for one minute her apology to Dolvett was sincere  - she definitely just ate crow to get back in the gym.

Hope you all have a great weekend - head over to Fitness, Health and Happiness for Fitness Friday!

Monday, January 23, 2012

A birthday, 1/2 marathon spectating and stupid things heard in spin class

Saturday was my 42nd birthday.  42.  Wow!  My parents took the kids and we celebrated with some good friends at dinner on Saturday night.  It was a fun, and super nice not to have to wake up early the next morning and take care of kiddos.

On Sunday, I headed out with my running buddy Michelle to spectate/play cheerleader for her and our friend Kristin at the Vancouver Lake Half marathon.  As you may or may not recall, I was supposed to be running this half marathon, but decided to be wise and gave away my entry because of my foot.  This is a small race, but from what I could see very well supported.  It's got a lot of out and back action on the course, which from a runners standpoint might not be great, but from a spectating standpoint it gave us lots of opportunities to see friends without moving around too much.

Happy runners!
The weather was terrible.  When we left the house it was just overcast - but as the race started it began raining and was super windy.  It was soooo cold.  It's one thing to run in rain, but the wind just cut through you and chilled you to the bone.  I met up with my friends Mike and Ed, who I trained with for the Vancouver USA Marathon last spring.  They are on the gimp list like me, so we haven't run together in a long time.  It was great to hang out with them and reminisce about our glory running days.  We've decided we need to plan a "comeback" race together since we are recovering from our various injuries.   Michelle and Kristin finished the race, and we hustled on out of there because they were so cold after the run!  I came home to some sweet homemade presents from my kiddos and ice cream cake for desert.  All in all a great birthday weekend.

This morning I met with my friend Robin and we went to another spin class.  This workout was much better than the first one as far as the instruction went.  She was much more clear about where we should be on our RPM's, and I really felt like I pushed myself and got a great workout.  BUT, the instructor did pull a total idiot move at the end of the class.  She was talking about the importance of doing interval work, and how it will make you stronger - which, incidentally,  I completely agree with and is why I do speed work/tempo training, etc.  Here's where the stupid part comes in - to prove her point she made the following comment:  "You know how 40 year old marathoners always look old and tired and haggard?  Compare them to a track and field athlete whose training is interval based, and I can guarantee that they look 10 years younger". 


I was unaware that the goal of running marathons or doing track and field was to appear more youthful.  I thought it had something to do with fitness, personal I know better.  And also,  know your audience!  I was looking around the room which was filled with mostly women who looked about my age, and I'd be willing to bet I was not the only marathoner in the group.  My friend Robin was dying of laughter at the look on my face.  I just couldn't believe she was putting down marathoners in order to make her point.  I know she was just trying to explain the importance of intervals, but it definitely wasn't the best way to go about it!   At least this old and haggard 40+ year old marathoner got a good workout in.  We did do intervals - so I think I probably look 38 now...

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Five!

Oy - I haven't posted anything since last Friday!  Haven't been commenting much either -what a bad blogger I am.  This week was just busy busy busy - hopefully next week will be calmer.  On to the Friday five...

1)  Running.  Another pain free run!  So happy about this - extremely optimistic that my foot is finally healing.  I went to see the podiatrist yesterday and he's super happy with the progress as well.  Now I'm in the "run if it feels good" mode.  I'm going to be super cautious.  I've lost so much time to this injury I don't want any setbacks...I don't know if my psyche can handle any more setbacks.  So, I'm going to attempt 2 days/week running and continuing the cross training.  I'll reevaluate in a few weeks and see where I'm at.

2)  Orthotics.  Last month my doctor gave me temporary arch supports to wear in my shoes while I was waiting for custom made orthotics to be ready.  If you had told me a few months ago I would be getting orthotics I would have thought it was crazy.  For some reason I was really resistant to the idea.  But I can't argue with the results.  In the last month I've seen more improvement in my foot than I saw in the 6 months prior, including 2 months of twice weekly physical therapy (note: I'm NOT saying PT doesn't work, it just didn't work for my injury for whatever reason).  I do think I'm going to have to go get some new running shoes though - my foot feels really cramped in my current shoe with the orthotics in there.

3)  On another note, I have a really tight glute/hamstring right now (it's always something, isn't it?).  Thinking back, I had this before in early February when I was doing this workout regularly:
And in the last week I started doing this workout again.  I don't know what exercises specifically would be causing this, but something in there is not agreeing with my booty!  So I think I'll switch it up and see if the soreness goes away.  Anyone else experienced this?

4)  We've been in a bit of a food rut, so I made a goal to try one new recipe a week.   This week was a total fail.  Busy, busy schedules led to some very basic meals and nothing new.  I did try three new recipes last week, so that makes up for this week, right?  I did make one of my favorite standby's though - creamy white chicken chili

Seriously, this soup has such good flavor and is SO easy to make - love it! 

5)  Biggest Loser.   Conda?  Most.Annoying.Personality.Ever.  She got beat in three competitions during the week, and showed no grace each time.  Glad that Dolvett called her out at the weigh in. 

Funniest line of the night:

Dolvett: I know you can do better.
Conda: I'm going to prove you wrong.

hahahahaha...her brother looked completely embarrassed by her attitude.  How did she not get any votes to be eliminated?  I felt so bad for Lauren - she was so blindsided.  I got teary-eyed when they showed her finishing the half marathon - I think she might have a good shot at the at home prize.

That's my five!  On to the weekend!  Head over to Fitness, Health and Happiness for Fitness Friday and connect with other bloggers!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Five


1)  Guess what I did this morning?  I RAN!  3 whole miles!  And guess what?  NO PAIN.  Not even a twinge.  Not even a "well it feels a little tight".  Nothing.  It felt TOTALLY normal.  Even better, it's now about 4 hours later and I still don't have any pain or tightness.  I am so optimistic, and I'm really confident that what I'm doing right now is working.  This is the best my foot has felt in months.  What a great way to start my day!

2)  This half marathon... next weekend.  I was hoping to run/walk it, but last week I gave away my entry.  I don't want to risk re-injury to my foot.  With it feeling so good right now, I think this is a smart decision.  Another DNS though - I hate that!

3) I made three recipes from this magazine this week:
I made the dish shown above, Pork and Carrot Curry, as well as Penne pasta with Steak and Peppers and Chicken Paprikash.  The Pork curry and the penne pasta were really good.  Great flavor and easy to make. Two BIG thumbs up from me and the hubby.  The Chicken Paprikash was ick - can't win them all I guess.  But, lots of good recipes in this mag.  I will probably try out a few more.


Like a lot of people, I'm a fan of the Biggest Loser.  Just curious what you all thought of the "competition" between Dolvett and Bob this season so far.  I've only watched the show for the last few seasons, but I don't recall it ever being this blatant and it really feels a little forced and staged to me.  Plus, it's making Bob look like a whiny baby...just sayin'.

I do like the "No Excuses" theme though, and they way they are tackling common excuses every week.  The focus on nutrition this week was really good and something that has been missing from the show.  Although I got to admit, when she said sushi is bad and that a turkey sandwich would be a better choice, I thought: 1) shut up crazy lady, I will never willingly give up sushi, and 2) they are just trying to push that damn Jennie-O turkey again.  The product placement on the BL is hilarious.

5)  The next two weekends are our last free weekends before the kid's sports obligations start taking over, so I'm going to relax and enjoy!  Hope you all have a great one!

Happy Friday!

Head over to Fitness, Health and Happiness for the Fitness Friday blog hop!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

January New (to me) Cross Training Challenge!

A new (to me) workout for 2012!  SPIN.

Ok - confession time here - I've always wanted to take a spin class...and for some ridiculous reason I've always been nervous to do it.  Seriously, the last time I belonged to a gym I would always look at the class schedule then come up with excuses why I couldn't make it or convince myself that another workout would be better.  Isn't that dumb?  I mean it's just a workout class. But, an emotinal meeting with the podiatrist and committing to the New To You Cross Training Challenge, has inspired me to finally get this booty on the bike.

I went to the gym with my friend Robin, and we showed up promptly 5 minutes after we were supposed to be there.  Note to self: traffic is worse at 7:45am than it is at 4:30am...who knew?  Luckily, Robin knew another girl in the class who helped us with getting our bikes setup and gave me a quick rundown of what was what.  And we were off!  Here's my initial impression of spinning... 
  • The workout was hard - super hard.  I seriously was feeling winded during the warm up! 
  • The instructor gave great explanations of proper form and why it was important.
  • The music - as a techno-loser without an ipod, it's kind of a novelty for me to have music during a workout.
  • The lights were off - I don't know why they were off, but I liked it because it gave the class less of the sterile gym feeling.
  • I don't own padded cycling shorts, and I was worried I would get ridiculously sore, but this didn't turn out to be a problem.
  • The instructor's cues weren't as specific as I would have liked.  There was a little too much of upping the resistance depending on "how we were feeling".  I like more specific numbers - at least more regular clues of where the RPM's should be would have helped.  I don't even know if that's possible because everyone's fitness is different.  The problem for me is that I have a tendency to let myself off the hook too easily if I'm not pushed - but if I'm told I should be at point X, then I will work to get there.  I realize that this is a personal problem, but to get the absolute most out of spinning I'm going to have to consciously push myself (don't get me wrong, I was still dying in there, but I do think I could have pushed harder).  They have a new instructor starting next Monday though, so we'll see if I like their cueing better.
  • The only other thing I didn't like was that there are only two spin classes that will fit into my schedule.  I wish there were more options!
So my first "new to me" cross training workout is completed, and I will definitely be adding spin to my weekly workout schedule.  I'm super thankful that I have this new challenge to force me to try new things!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Friday Five!

1)  Both my kids have sleepovers tonight = DATE NIGHT!  I don't even know what we're going to do, but I am so excited!

2)  In my quest to try cardio-that-doesn't-hurt-my-foot, I've been going to the gym!  Well, ok, I've gone twice this week and worked out at home twice.  The gym is a bit of an adjustment.  The only time I really have to workout is in the mornings or late at night (read: before the monsters get up or after they go to bed).  I know myself, and I know that if I wait until evening the chances of blowing it off are much improved, so I prefer the mornings.  Mornings workouts for me mean I have to be done by 6am, which means leaving the house at 4:20 to get in an hour-long workout at the gym.  That's a little brutal!  I'm used to getting up early, but not  THAT early.  I'm still going to run short runs with my girlfriends once a week, so I'm not completely out of the loop, and I'll see how my foot does with that.  It's been feeling good lately.

This morning I did the Precor (elliptical) machine for 45 minutes and got in 4.6 miles (I think it's says "distance" and I assume that's miles, right?).  I did the whole thing without holding on to the arm thingy's (that's the technical term for it...look it up) which I read works your core/balance and is a closer simulation of running...and since I'm a complete techno loser, I've gone twice now without headphones and had to read the captions on the tv the whole time.  Need to get some headphones...

3)  I've decided to jump on a new challenge hosted by Kim:  the New To You Cross Training Challenge!  

I was so excited when I saw this, it's exactly what this girl needs to broaden my horizons with this cross training thing.  I hope to have my January "new to me" cross training done on Monday - will post about it then! 

4)  I picked up a copy of this magazine yesterday:
I've never looked at this magazine before and there are some great recipes.  I plan to make the cover recipe, Pork and Carrot curry, sometime this weekend.  Doesn't that sound yum?  Will report back if it's good!

5) Speaking of yum...anyone who watches the Biggest Loser knows who Dolvett is - the eye candy new trainer that came on the show last season.  I wanted to see if he had made any previous workout DVD's and I found this:
I don't know - something about the title just cracked me up.  "Me and My Chair"?  Really?  It just doesn't scream "ass-kicking workout" to me.   

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Head on over to Fitness, Health and Happiness to meet other like minded bloggers at Fitness Friday!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

21 more random things about me....

This blogger got tagged by Kim at (Just) Trying is For Little Girls to do a "21 random things" list.  So thanks for the tag Kim!  And here we go...

1.  I am left handed...mostly.  I write and eat with my left hand.  I play pool and tennis left handed, but I play softball, basketball and bowl right handed.  For lots of things I just use either hand - my dad and one of my sisters is the same way.  We also have a really hard time telling our rights vs. lefts (I have to make the "L" for loser sign with my hand sometimes to distinguish) probably because we don't have a dominant side.

2.  On a related note - I took my drivers test at 16 and I failed the first time.  The instructor had told me to make a left turn and I went to take a right, and then realized I was going the wrong direction at the last minute and cut across traffic to make the left.  It was the last turn on the way back to the DMV.  He told my mom "she was doing so well and then I don't know what happened..."  Stupid directionally muddled brain!

3.  I've had surgery 4 times - none being c-sections.

4.  I delivered my 2nd baby when I was 37 and my doctor informed me that I "was in great shape for a geriatric pregnancy".  Nice, make a preggo woman feel ancient.

5.  My water broke with both my pregnancies.  With my daughter, my water broke and I couldn't find a pad in the house for the ride to the hospital - but I did have infant baby diapers.  Those'll do in a pinch, in case you're ever met with a similar predicament.

6.  I rode in the Goodyear blimp when I was 5 years old - arranged by my uncle who worked for Goodyear at the time.

7. I broke my foot when I was three and a bicycle ran over it.  My mother didn't take me to the doctor right away because she didn't believe it was broken.

8. I broke my wrist when I was 9 and I fell out of the back of a pickup (total country girl accident).  My mother didn't take me to the doctor right away because she didn't believe it was broken.

9. My mother still feels really bad about #'s 7 and 8 ... 

10.  I went to a K-8th grade school growing up.  We fed into a larger high school, but my closest friends from childhood are elementary school friends.

11.   The school was called "Ninety One" Elementary school - named after the district number - which was #91.  Pretty original, huh?  I find it funny that they named the school much in the same manner I named my dolls growing up. 

12.  I'm the shortest person in my family with two of my sisters being 5'8 and another 5'11.   This is great for getting clothes that have shrunk a little.

13.  In the 90's,  I did the "after college backpack around Europe trip" with my friend Megan for a month.   It was one of the most fun trips I've ever been on.

14.  Megan's brother is married to my sister.  So I don't know what that makes her officially as far as relations go, but she's like the 5th sister in the family. 

15.  Early in our travels we bought two Belgian beers with matching glasses to bring back to Megan's brother and hauled them around in our backpacks for the good part of the month until we broke down and drank them about a week before we were leaving.   That was some good decision making right there. We did end up giving him the glasses.

16.  Megan and I went running in Dresden, Germany and two Austrian girls who were staying at the hostel thought this was the strangest thing they had ever heard of...."You're just going to run?  Outside?  On the sidewalks?"   This was almost 20 years ago, I would think that now it wouldn't be nearly as novel of a concept.

17.  They also asked us if all Americans eat ice cream straight out of the carton like they show on TV.

18.  In Paris, we woke up from one too many cocktails in possession of some guy's passport.  Spent the next day calling his emergency numbers trying to track him down to return it.  Finally got a hold of his mother - and her response when I explained the situation was, "Yes, he is my son.  I THOUGHT he was my smart son, but now I'm not so sure." 

Getting a lot of mileage on this list from this Europe trip, aren't I? :)

19.  I hate getting into an unmade bed.  If it's not made when I go to turn in I make it real quick before I hit the sheets.  This is a phenomena that has emerged as an adult, because I never wanted to make my bed growing up.

20. I'd love to get a cat, but my husband is super allergic.  My daughter also really wants one, but I told her that "cats make daddy sick".  For the longest time every time he got sick she would ask "did a kitty do it?"

21.   I work for my mother - doing book keeping for her small computer hardware company.  While this is not the most exciting job, the flexibility is awesome, and frankly, I really like my mom.

Whew - that's more random info about me than I'm sure anyone wanted to know!

And now to tag 5 more people who I'd love to know more about -

Trinity at Running Mother
Penny at The Middle of the Pack, my Running Journey
Kyria at Travel Spot
Sarah at Running to keep up with a toddler
Jen at Runner...Maybe

Let me know in the comments if you're going to play along!  Looking forward to the randomness!