Monday, February 17, 2014

The last year in my 30s..

Today I had a lovely Happy Birthday lunch with Megan and Bill.  Bill brought me flowers and balloons.  How nice!

I bought some great clearance shoes at DSW.  You can't turn down a birthday buy on a new pair of flats!

I did head to the gym.  I found that working out when your 39 is soo much more difficult than it was when I was 38.  Just amazing the difference a year makes :) My bones also ache more than they did yesterday.

I came home to more flowers from my friends Becca and Zack.

There was also a lovely note attached.  The note read:  You are not really old until next year.  Nothing says happy birthday like a note telling you that you are almost old.  Love my friends!

I also finally checked my mailbox.  I haven't ventured through the snow piles to get the mail since Thursday.  I got my shirt to run the Pittsburgh Half Marathon in!  It will go great with my Steeler shorts!

Friday, February 14, 2014

running love

Happy Valentine's Day to everyone!

I started thinking today about when I developed a love for running.  It is Valentine's day you know..the day to think about your love.  I'm not really sure when I developed a love for running.  I know that the winter of 2008 we had a crazy workout competition at work.  You got points for every 30 mins of activity.  The person with the most points in April won a bunch of money.  I didn't win..but I tried.  I was working out like crazy.  One of my neighbor was commenting on how much I was walking and giving me the crazy look.  The gym was my second home.  During that time I wasn't running on the treadmill or outside for that matter, but I was working out a lot.  I did a lot of elliptical work too.  One day my friend Kristen asked if I wanted to run a 5K and I thought why not.  So I signed up, Kristen signed up and my friend Becca signed up.  I ran my first 5K with a dad behind me telling his son that he wasn't allowed to stop until he finished.  There is no stopping in a 5K!  So I felt like I couldn't walk and just kept going.  I finished the race and enjoyed it.  Not loved it, but I had fun.

I signed up for another local race with some friends and had a good time too.  Next thing I know I'm running races here and there.  I don't remember if I really trained for much.  I am sure I ran here and there, but not much more than that.  I ran a few 8K's and soon Kristen asked if I wanted to sign up for the Cherry Blossom 10 miler lottery.  There was a good chance we would not get in. Well if the chances are good that we will not make it sign me up! And of course we got in.   I am sure I could actually train for a race.  What? They pick up on the slow bus if you are not going at least 14 min. per mile.  Well here's hoping I don't end up on the slow bus.

We did get into  the Cherry Blossom 10 miler and I trained by running my longest run (4 miles) before running the race.  Needless to say that was a very hard race.  For those wanting my training plan, please do not run 4 miles and then go and run is not fun!  I felt like throwing up after that race.  I felt dizzy and just horrible.

 So what do I do?  Sign up for it again the next year.  Yeah I think I have a death wish.  We got into the race and I had a different training plan.  I actually trained!  Go figure!  Two days after that race I convinced Kristen we should run our first half marathon.  If we can run 10 miles we can run 13.1.  We signed up for the RnR Philadelphia race in 2010.  We both ended up getting sick and I ended up throwing up the entire ride home form Philly to Virginia.  I do not think I can ever run a race in Philly because of that experience.  I am blaming the hotel for getting us sick.

Well after Philly I wanted to redo my half marathon experience.  There is no way I could judge that race distance since I was sick while I ran it.  So Kristen and I signed up for the Flying Pirate in 2011.  It was a great race!  I loved the support for all of the runners.  I loved the small town feel of the race.  I definitely had the bug!

I doubled my races in 2011 to 11 races including my favorite ten mile race..Army Ten Miler.  There is just something about race day that I love.  The excitement.  Running with a group of strangers and sometimes chatting while you run.  Trying to hit whatever goal you have for that day's race.

 I also started to go to run club.  I think making new running friends really helped my love for running too. Because of run club there are few local races that I run that I do not bump into someone that I know.

So somewhere between my first 5K in 2008 and now I fell in love with running.  It has definitely been a fun journey.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Tuck and roll...a.k.a. Cupid 5K

This morning Megan and I ran the Cupid 5K.  I have never ran this race and it was pretty good for a small race in February.  There were families running and people all decked out in Valentines wear.  We each got a lovely heart headband to wear.  I broke out the tutu for this run. There is only a few runs that you can justify a tutu and Valentine's Day runs are one of those that scream for a tutu.

We started out and if you got behind people that were slow there was not a lot of room to run around them.  The race was on a lot of sidewalks.  I did pass some people and got stuck behind some more people.  Around the half way point I almost had to leap frog over a kid who dropped his glove and stopped to pick it up.  Luckily I have reflexes like a cat and I was able to go around him in the grass.  Unfortunately I do not always have control of my running shoes.  Five feet after my reflexes saved a small child I ended up biting the dust.  I am not sure what happened.  I was being pretty careful with uneven sidewalks.  I am not even sure if the sidewalk that I suddenly was rolling over was uneven.  All I know is I went down pretty quickly.  But my cat like reflexes were there and I was able to roll out of the runners way.  Tuck and roll people!  The nice dad to the kid I just  barely missed helped me up and I was off and running in a few seconds.  No blood.  My hand hurt a bit where it made contact with the sidewalk but no harm done.  I was like a ninja with my moves though. I am sure that the dad was impressed with my quickness and my ability to shake it off.

We were almost to the end and someone else bit the dust right behind me.  I turned around to make sure she was alright.  Looked like she might have jammed her shoulder or arm because that is what she was holding. I picked up her keys and there were about five of us asking if she needed help.  Her friend was with her and looked like things were under control so I continued on my way.  Someone must have said something to a volunteer because he was walking towards the fallen runner when I turned the corner.

I finished and enjoyed some hot chocolate after the race.  Megan and I had to find some place for some post race french toast.  This one had pecans and strawberries on it.  Yummm!!!  Turns out that I PR'd today!  I took one second off of my best time (which happens to be my very first 5K in 2008!  Yeah you can see how I work on improving my 5K time :)  I am sure it would have been a better PR if I didn't fall or head back to help the other fallen runner.  Pretty happy since I didn't even think I had PR'd in the first place!

We noticed that there seemed to be some sort of camping event going on near the race. Turns out Nike was realeasing some new shoes. 

A small store selling the newly release Nike shoes were letting in a few people in at a time.  I don't think there are any shoes that I would camp out for..I know there are no shoes I would camp out in the winter for!  Well I hope everyone was able to find the shoe they wanted in their size.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Running at run club? Say What?!

Last night I ran at run club..I haven't done that in quite some time.  Yesterday it was probably in the high 30's when we ran.  A perfect night for a run.  I was questioning my clothing choice.  Everyone looked like they were ready for a winter storm.  I had on capri's and a long sleeve shirt..oh and to look like one of the cool kids I added ear warmers that I found in my running bag.   Yeah the ear warmer headband will keep me warm.  Those ear warmers didn't last long..Turns out my outfit was perfect.  I was a bit chilly on the return run because of how the wind was hitting us but I was pretty comfortable.  When you haven't ran outside in some time it is hard to figure out how many layers make for a comfortable run.  I sweat.  I sweat in 100 degrees and I sweat in 30 degree weather.  So I am never quite sure how many layers to go with.  Last night it was the perfect amount.  I also will say that I felt pretty good during my run.  I could have ran a bit faster too, but I was staying with Jen.  You do not want to leave someone to run by themselves in the dark.  And it is always nice to chat while friends while you run.

Next up: I have two 5K's this weekend.  Both Valentine's Day runs.  

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Where's The Young and the Restless when you need them?

Well I did it! I completed a pretty good run on the treadmill..with the help of Young and the Restless!  Thank's Y&R!  I headed to the gym on Wednesday since we didn't have school.  I really need to have a few week days off from work so I can head to the gym in the afternoon.  Did you know that you have your pick of machines during the afternoon of a random weekday?!  I know I had no idea!  Now I just need to figure out how to get to the gym during the school day.  Anyone want to volunteer throwing a bunch of snow around the superintendent's  house so he thinks a blizzard has happened once a week??  I'm sure his will not catch on to this trick.

Anyway..back to the gym..I headed over during my surprise snow day to attempt to get in a run on the treadmill.  I figured I would mess with the speed to keep things interesting.  Since it works for lots of you all, I figured I would try it.  Well I got on and realized that Y&R was on.

So I decided that I would unplug my music and see what was happening with Nicki and friends.  I think it was a great idea!  I was able to get in almost 5 miles on the treadmill.  Thank you Y&R!

On Thursday I headed out with some friends to listen to a band.  We claimed we were ushering out the January birthdays (KP's) and welcoming in the February birthdays (Jen's and mine).  But really it was just an excuse to hang out without sweaty clothes and listen to music.  As always it was a good time hanging out with running friends.  

No we didn't go skiing.. Those goggles were made for bars.

Always fun hanging out with running friends :)