Showing posts from November, 2010

odds & ends & weekly wrap

On Thanksgiving, it snowed.

Graham had a busy weekend of play dates:

I had a super awesome trainer party (note: much easier to tolerate 2 hours on the trainer with friends):

And last night, we hung ornaments on our tree:

And I seem to have overcome my Monday-afternoon-swims-suck problem by swimming at 8am yesterday.  But, boy, is it tough to jump in the water first thing Monday morning!

Monday: 45 minutes lifting (legs), another swim failure: 40 minutes/2000 yards swim
Tuesday: 30 minutes lifting (a/c/b), 50 minutes/5.1 miles walk/run
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: 10 minutes/1 mile jog with Graham
Friday: Rest
Saturday: 55 minutes lifting (legs), 1:02/6.26 miles walk/run
Sunday: 40 minutes lifting (a/c/b), 2:00/28.3 miles cycling (trainer)

Thank you - everyone - for all of the support yesterday.  I can't tell you all how much it helps and means to me.

sucker punch

Thanksgiving is a difficult holiday for most.  It is usually many more people in one place than is easy to handle.  Someone ends up spending all day in the kitchen working their ass off so everyone else can enjoy a nice meal.  It can be tough - especially in families, where we tend to fall into old habits about relationships - tempers flare easily and feelings can be hurt.  Family relationships have always been difficult for me, and while I think things have improved over the past few years, it is easy to regress.

Like many, I am sure, I felt stress while I was home.  I vented about this stress in a place that I thought was safe.  I said things that I was feeling - things that I could never, would never express out loud, but things that I could vent about, even overreact about, and then let go, send spiraling off into the universe to then breathe more easily with these negative thoughts out of my head.  And once I had let go, it was so much easier to enjoy the brief time I had with my …

wordless wednesday


fatigue puzzle (& weekly wrap)

Every Monday afternoon, I go for a swim.  Sometimes it's up at the Wilson pool, and sometimes it's just over at my gym pool. I usually do a low intensity, medium-long swim (2000-2500 yards).  Warm-up, 1-2 distance sets, a few short sprints, and I'm done.  Nothing super taxing.  I almost never lift on weekends, but I generally get in a long ride and the past few weekends I've been walk/running 5K's (NOT RACING), so I like swimming on Mondays to stretch everything out and give my legs a nice smooth recovery day.  But for the past 5-6 weeks, my swims have completely sucked.

It's not swimming that sucks - I also swim Wednesday nights, and those have been pretty solid.  For the past 4 weeks, I've only been swimming twice a week (I know, shame on me), so I don't think I'm overdoing the swimming.  I just can't figure out what is wrong with Monday afternoon.  I feel lethargic and slow, I have no motivation, and I'm barely moving through the water.  Y…

Mount Vernon Turkey Trot 5K: race report

I found this race a few weeks ago when I was not yet running but looking for "test" races to come back to.  I was lucky enough to convince Kirstin to join me for the first Turkey Trot of the year!

We showed up pretty close to the start of the race.  It looked like competition was going to be pretty fierce in the 18 and under division, but as Kirstin and I were competing on our own division - the "walk 2 run 4" division - we weren't too worried.  We started off walking and chatting, and our walk 2 run 4 plan quickly turned into a "my HR is low, let's run" slash "this is a big hill, let's walk" plan.  But it was a gorgeous morning and I had a blast walking, running, and chatting.  I actually have no idea how much running I did overall, because this graph isn't very helpful: 
But I think the best part of the day was the spending time outside with friends, doing a little running and a little gabbing.

Total: 3.14 miles/33:17/avg. pace 10…

family secrets revealed!

Growing up, the one thing that we always begged for was Mom's homemade pizza.  Simple but delicious, it was the first thing I learned to cook when I moved out and still provides the base for dinner several times a month.  I'm pretty sure the secret is the crust.

I've made it with spinach, chicken, and pesto cream sauce, jalapenos & green chiles (a favorite), with matching cheese sticks:
With barbecue chicken and onions:
And most recently as the base of the caramelized onion experiment:

Here's how I do it!

Mix 1 packet of rapid rise yeast with 1 cup of warm (but not hot) water.  
Stir in 1TSP sugar and 1TBSP oil.  I usually throw in a pinch of salt here as well.
Let the mixture sit for 5-10 minutes.
Add 1/2 cup of flour at a time, mixing thoroughly.  I use whole wheat flour, and it takes just a little over 2 cups of flour before the dough is right.  White flour takes about 3 cups.  
Pat the dough lump with flour and put it in a dark cool place to rise.  I usually leave it at…

three things thursday

1. I had a fantastically awesome swim last night.  It made up for all the bad swims I've had in the last 3 weeks.  Although my "sprints" were more like "flail awkwardly in the water because I've already swam (swum?) 2600 yards."

2. I went and saw the Egyptian Magician this morning for all my little nigglings.  He gave me one exercise for my tight lat/shoulder thing which I can already tell is going to help, and a small handful of exercises for my knee thing.  He said that my joints are hyper-mobile so I just need to tighten up some of the muscles around my knee so my patella tracks correctly (there is a strong chance that I am not repeating this diagnosis correctly).  The short version is, I am restricted from nothing, I have a few exercises to do, and I only have to go once a week.  SERIOUS PT WIN.  He also didn't give me too much shit about having surgery and seemed glad that the running is going well, and said that I can walk 2 run 4 for up to an hour…

wordless wednesday

so far, so good.  SO GOOD.

'tis the season.... (& weekly wrap)

Image be out drinking.

Friday night the poet and I celebrated a bit of an anniversary.  We went back here.
And drank a lot of this:
Saturday night we went to an awesome Thanksgiving dinner party.  I baked & brought key lime cupcakes:
and drank too much of this:
Sunday morning I rallied hard with a grilled cheese sandwich and headed out for a fantastic morning-turned-afternoon of wine, cheese, and girl talk here: 
And there was more of this:
Monday night I continued the streak:
While celebrating this:
Weekly wrap:
Monday: 45 minutes lifting (arms/chest/back), 60 minutes/2500 meters swimming
Tuesday: 25 minutes lifting (legs), 20 minutes/2 miles elliptical, 30 minutes/7.3 miles trainer
Wednesday: 50 minutes lifting (a/c/b), 35 minutes/3.5 miles walk/run
Thursday: 45 minutes lifting (L), 30 minutes/3.25 miles elliptical, 55 minutes/2500 yards swimming
Friday: 45 minutes lifting (a/c/b), 45 minutes/4.52 miles walk/run
Saturday: 25ish minutes, 2ish miles walk/run
Sunday: 49 minutes/11.9 miles trainer

NFL Fit For You 5K: race report

I'm calling this a race report but it was like trying to run a 5K inside the little car with 9 big men dressed up like clowns.

My friend Jamie came up for the weekend, and the poet and I had just heard about a $5 5K being held by the NFL just across the bridge in the National Harbor.  Jamie is new to the running world (a sucker is born every minute?) but was happy to walk/run with me.  No time goals, no pace goals, just us and the sunshine.  The poet is still trying to PR (darn that 24:xx!) but promised to come back and get us afterwards.

We headed over pretty early to sign up, but then realized there was nothing to do but watch the Redskins cheerleaders and bump into people for an hour.  The solution?  Zip back home, put an Eagles jersey on Graham, and let him walk/run with us.  

By the time we got back over there, it was about 10 minutes before race start.  The poet headed off into the crowd to try and get to the front of the runners.  We hung back and did puppy crowd control.  And…

random friday facts

1. I am officially the grinch of heating and air conditioning.  PUT ON A SWEATER.

2. I don't like wearing socks that stick out over my running shoes.  Sometimes I get blisters from this, but I'd rather have blisters than look like a high-sock goob.

3. I don't like apple or pumpkin pie.  Or stuffing.  Or green bean casserole with the crunchy onions on top.  Or, really, that much, turkey.  I like mashed potatoes.

4. I never go shopping on black friday.  

5. When I was 5, I wanted to be a vet.  I still think it would be a good job for me.

6. I hate printers.

7. I can't hear a difference between the free headphones and the $200 headphones.

8. I have a pair of IU sweatpants that I wear all the time around the house.  They are almost 2 years old.  I think they've been washed once.

9. I have a lot of pink books.

10. I go through the mail pile once every 3-4 weeks.

11. I returned the sparkly dress.

12. I still haven't tried the oatmeal I bought a week ago.  I'm scared.

13. All…

three things thursday

1. Okay, I might have overreacted a tiny bit.  There are still some small twinges in my knee, but it's healing.  I think I might have just strained my quad a tiny bit on Saturday.  Whew.  Note to self: calm the eff down.

2. I got a chance to try out my fancy-pants new trainer.  I think I set the resistance too high, because after 30 minutes I was drowning in sweat (normal) and exhausted (not normal).  But it's still so much better than the recumbent bike at the gym.  And SO MUCH BETTER than 44º and super windy. 
Hello, beautiful!
3. I've done a few cooking experiments lately with varying degrees of success.  The spicy Thai tempeh with green beans was meh.  Taste was good, but I think tempeh is not for me.
But the first lasagna of the season was delicious! The caramelized onions-gorgonzola-arugula flatbread pizza needs a little tweaking - onions overcooked, and not enough arugula. But the chewy brownies with mini chocolate chips and pink vanilla frosting and sprinkles were amazin…

wordless wednesday: the picture of sweet relief

Whatever is going on with my knee, it doesn't hurt to walk/run - easy - on a treadmill.   Actually, it felt kinda good.  I will unconditionally accept this, without question.

and I'm back in my cranky mad pants (& weekly wrap)

Saturday night I noticed that when I squatted down to pick up dog toys, some pain shot through my knee - front of knee, a little towards the inside, and kind of 1/2 an inch up the quad.  It only bothered me when I deep squatted, so I figured I must've banged it on the coffee table and forgotten.  Oh, and, P.S. - NOT the knee I just had surgery on.  The "good" one.  Little bastard.

Sunday morning I headed out on a ride with Lauren (an ice-cold comedy of errors, flat tires, and icicles hanging from everything on me that an icicle can hang from) and it hurt for the first few miles, but quickly went away.  The ride was short (15.3 miles), but it bothered me later at the gym when I tried to do lunges and squats.  Since that point, I've been icing it a few times a day & taking Advil by the truckload, plus stretching and foam rolling.  Yesterday I did arms at the gym and swam, so my knee was only being used for walking me around.  Continued icing and adviling, and did a …

Get Your Rear In Gear 5K: race report

Wait who WHAT now?  I did WHAT this weekend?

About a month ago, the poet put together a group of people that he works with to all run a 5K together.  By Thursday night, every single one of those lame-asses had bailed for a variety of reasons (summed up as: they suck).  It's a 5K, for pete's sake, not a marathon!  Anyhow, I volunteered to take one of the bibs, and do my every-other-day-walk-run with him (well, several minutes behind him) on Saturday morning.

The weather Saturday morning was perfect - 50ºish and sunny.  Since all I've been doing since it turned cool has been cycling, I've pretty much completely forgotten how to dress to run outside.  I ended up in my Brooks running hoodie and my Target-brand capris, and it was perfect.  The poet was trying to PR, so I let him go up front with the serious people and hung around back with the walkers.  My plan was 2 minutes walk, 2 minutes run, don't pay a lot of attention to pace, just do what feels good and you'll …

random friday facts

1. I HATE it when people don't cross the street at a crosswalk.  If you drive with me, the #1 thing you will hear me say is, "That's not a crosswalk!"

2. My iPod shuffle's battery died while I was working out this morning, for the first time in 5 years of having a shuffle.  The charge it grabs while adding/removing music has always been enough.

3. I secretly like to run the vacuum.

4. I can't stand touching raw meat.  Or cold leftovers.  Ugh.

5. I have now tried to cook tempeh three times and not liked it every time.  You win, tempeh.

6. No, I did not build the built-ins.  Y'all must be crazy.

7. I miss choking on the humid 102º air and sweating my ass off at 6:30am, trying to finish my ride before the sun was fully up.  

8. I think I know why people have kids when G snuggles his head deeper into my side while he's sleeping.

9. I'm pretty sure I can point out every spot on the MV trail where I've had a bathroom emergency.

10. No matter how skinny or aw…

three things thursday

1.  Running is amazing.  It's so awesome.  I love it.  I feel so good.  Tuesday, I did the walk/run thang, running 11 minutes of out a 25 minute total on the treadmill.  Every muscle in my legs took turns yelling, "W. T. F." but calmed back down after I sent the message: running is here to stay!  This morning, I did more of the walk/run thang, running 19 minutes out of a 33 minute total on the treadmill, including an 8:30 mile.  LOOK OUT 2012 OLYMPICS.

However, not sure about the 2150's.  They feel great to run in, but the inside of my left heel is rubbing a bit on the side.  Going to fuss with laces and just run a few more weeks before I ditch them.  Did my ankles lose weight?

2. This weather (plus a side of ear/sinus infection) means I haven't been out on the bike since MCM spectating.  This means 2 things: a) time to buy the winter kit and b) I am really looking forward to my Sunday long ride, because I can tell that the outdoor riding is going to be intermitten…

wordless wednesday

Before. Oh God. What have I done? Wow, those are, um, really big. Maybe I do like it after all... Getting there. Done.
And also, the poet took a video of me running yesterday because he's a giant nerd.  (I know, I know).  I tried to upload it but an hour later I need to get some work done instead of try and figure out what is wrong with Blogger, so, sorry, you're just going to have to wait until tomorrow.  Happy Wednesday!

Update: trying again with the video!
Anyone want to look at my gait?  Just kidding.
And yes, I always have the gym emptied for me to workout.  I'm just that awesome.

MCM: spectator report & weekly wrap

I woke up early (but not as early as the runners) and got everything ready for spectating!  Liz's main man, Wes, picked me up and we parked in Clarendon and met Lauren to ride around and cheer everyone on our bikes.  Our first stop was the Key Bridge.  We rode down Wilson and got settled.  Boy, was it chilly riding down the hill, and windy on the bridge!  
shot from the bridge the fabulous (and cold) spectators! I rubbed the warm tea all over my face instead of drinking it. Pretty sure they drank their drinks.
We bumped into Cheryl on the bridge who was picture-taking like a champ.  It was really exciting to be spectating at this point of the race - there was a party going on at the corner in Georgetown, and tons of spectators, and the runners were really pumped up as well.  We saw the CAR girls come through - Liz, Beth, and Amy - and they looked great!  There were a ton of runners in costume (we saw Super Mario & Luigi at least a dozen times).  After that, we walked our bikes into…