Wednesday, June 29, 2011


I ran 3 painful miles yesterday because I skipped the run on Monday.

Now I am trying to force myself on the couch to do five miles. I'm just so tired.

However, the weather is beautiful today. Grey skies, cool temps, cloudy and rainy. I love it! In June no less!

Will check back later if I managed to quit being a couch potato.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Wedding Day

Distance: 8 miles
Time: 1:31ish/11:18 avg pace

We had a lot going on today with my sister's wedding, so I needed to get my long run out of the way early. I intended to go to bed at a decent hour last night, but I ended up staying up way too late reading The Help. (So good it was hard to put down.)

My alarm went off at 5:21, I got up slowly, and after eating a Fiber Plus bar, I was out the door by 6:15. I was a little anxious to be running 8 miles alone and wondering if I'd be able to convince myself to keep going strong. Thankfully, a good attitude helped me have a good run.

Some things to note about this run:

1. I wore my tight spandex pants that hit right below the knee. I usually wear these for biking. I wanted to avoid inner thigh chafing. I didn't wear underwear. I should have. Let's just say seams were bothering me for the first part of the run. Luckily I got involved in focusing on breathing, so I wasn't paying as much attention to seams later in the run.

2. People honked at me. Twice. Weird. But I'll take it as a compliment. At least no one yelled at me rudely out of a car like a few weeks ago.

3. A certain song can really move you along. How sad is it that I can't even remember the song right now, and I am too lazy to look it up?! But I repeated the song at least four times.

4. I used my new Camelback water bottle and loved it. I had plenty of water, and it stayed cold all the way home, even with my hot hand holding the bottle.

5. I decided on a plan before the run started (when to eat chomps and stop for walk/water breaks), and I am really proud that I followed my plan! It makes me feel empowered to run strong and have my plan work out. I ran three, walked for water and fuel, ran one and turned around with a quick water walk, ran two, walked for water and fuel, ran one, walked for water, and then finished with the last mile.

6. I tried Honey Stingers for the first time. Liked them. Will buy them again. I don't like jelly beans or Energy Blast things with gel inside. Yuck. Chomps and Stingers are yummy like a giant gummy candy.

7. I felt great all day. I can remember a few months ago when running 8 miles would have given me reason to stay in bed all day sleeping...because I ran eight miles!

Once I got home, I rested for a bit and then got ready for my sister's wedding. It was a very casual and small wedding in the park. The same park where we often go for rides and runs! When I told the boys where we were going, they both said, "We are going to OUR park?" Too funny!

I was the matron of honor.

Me, my sister, and my mom.

Tiffany and Thomas with their kids. Boys belong to my sister, the girl belongs to Thomas, and the baby bump belongs to them both!

Hudson. This face just kills me.

Me and my boys.

The men in my life.

We celebrated the new couple with a fun lunch at The Old Spaghetti Factory. Yum. Then we came home, and I holed up in my room finishing my book. BBQ chicken dinner rounded out a great day.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Distance: 3.0 miles
Time: 33:28/11:10

I dragged myself out of bed this morning and did three miles. While this wasn't my best time for three miles, I did have some successes I want to write about.

I seriously doubt that I'll ever consider running three miles to be "easy." However, I ran today without worrying about pace. I just ran. Okay, I glanced every so often at the Garmin, but I didn't let the numbers affect me. I was really trying to stay in touch with how I was feeling.

I noticed that my lungs weren't burning, I was managing to keep fairly even, steady breaths, and that my legs felt strong. Success!

Another positive this morning is that I ran the entire three miles without stopping. Up til now, I have been allowing myself to completely stop and rest at the half way point or some other random point that I deem necessary. Not today. I hit the half, turned fast and kept going. Success!

Once I got home, I worked out my legs. Now I get to rest until Saturday morning. I have a long run of 8 miles on the schedule. My plan is to get them done early because my sister is getting married at 11 a.m. I don't want 8 miles hanging over my head all weekend.

And now I am off to shower and get ready for jury duty. Ick. I really don't like going downtown, unless it is for a race!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

5 Hot Miles

Distance: 5.0 miles
Time: 58 minutes

I set my alarm to get up early and head out running by 5:30. I woke up before the alarm went off, shut off the alarm, and slept until 6:30.

On one hand, it would have been much cooler to run at 5:30, but on the other hand, I got an extra hour of sleep. Even though I'm technically on vacation, I'm teaching summer school, and the heat is draining me. We haven't exactly been resting around here.

Once summer school was over, I headed home for a quick lunch. Then I got on the treadmill to do the five miles I should have done this morning. It was hot. It was long. But it's done.

Running is hard. Sometime I wonder why I keep doing it. All I can come up with is that I love how I feel when I've completed a good run, and I want to conquer this tough sport. Or at least get better!

We are in the middle of a heat wave here with temps at 105ish. Miserable hot. We try to keep the air conditioner set between 78 and 82, so that makes it hot to run inside.

I cannot wait for November with 50 degree running temperatures.

I also did arm and abs. Win.

To make up for the heat, I at least had a good weigh-in at Weight Watchers. I weighed early because of swimming lessons for the kids, and I lost 3.4 pounds! I'm now down to 150.6. I am .7 away from being in the 140's! Oh how I want to see the 140's. I'm glad my hard work paid off this week.

Now onto good choices for next week.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Race and Run

Yesterday's Father's Day run was good. I felt like I had a decent time and pace at 10:54/mile. Now if I could maintain this pace for a half!

Before the race. I pinned my number on crooked. I was going to fix it but didn't want to bother with it. I should have, because I kept hitting the left edge with my water bottle. Ugh.

I have to give all the credit to my husband because he woke up at 5:30 a.m. so we could get the kids up and leave the house by 6...on Father's Day of all days! He is such a good sport and my best supporter.

During the race, I ran two miles and then stopped to walk a bit to have some Chomps and water. I ran another mile and walked for water. I took more Chomps at mile 4. Another walk break for water at mile 5. I think I walked for more water between mile 5 and 6, but I can't remember.

A cool part of the race was the finish. The race director was calling out each runner's name as they ran toward the finish line! It was neat hearing my name and city called out over the loud speaker!

Heading to the finish!

I think I go out of my way to clash. I was wearing pink socks, bright orange shorts, a bright blue shirt and a purple bondi band. Yikes! Can't miss me.

Oh, and I'm not flipping off the camera! I was giving my family the sign language "I love you" sign. It's our thing.

I didn't feel like sticking around for the awards or the raffle. I just wanted to head home. Eric took a nap, and I cut out coupons. Exciting, I know.

I also iced my knees. They have been a bit sore after the long bike ride on Saturday.

You can't really tell from this photo, but I had more bloody toes. Same exact spot that gave me trouble during my half. Lesson to self: get pedicure before a long run, not after. It was the toenail from toe #4 that was digging into the skin of toe #3. Crusty blood between toes is not fun.

Later we headed out for lunch at Poppolo's Pizza. Oh my goodness! My best friend, Stacey, was always raving about this place. She and I took all our kids there for dinner a few weeks ago. So yummy! I have a new favorite pizza place. I just wish it was closer to my house.

After pizza, Eric filled my car with gas. I love it when he does this chore so I don't have to.

Then we headed to Old Navy for more clothes for me! Isn't that how you are supposed to spend Father's Day? Shopping for clothes for yourself?!

I picked up three pairs of shorts and two striped shirts. I love stripes.

Outfit #1. Khaki shorts and brownish striped shirt.

Outfit #2. Blue short and blue striped shirt. This shirt is the same as the grey one I bought a few weeks ago. It was cheaper today!

White shorts.

Oh, and since it was Father's Day, Eric got a pair of shorts as well.

It's strange to stand in my closet and realize that there are so many things in there that are simply too big. It's not a bad problem to have, but shopping is not really my thing. At least for summer I now have three pairs of shorts, several dresses, and a few tops.

Eric BBQ'ed delicious steaks last night for dinner. Then I spent time planning for today's first day of Summer School (which went well).

I sent this kissy face photo to Eric today. I love him. He's great. I also am liking my hair darker. It was an accident that I went this dark, but I'm liking the change.

**I ran three miles this morning in exactly 33 minutes. I felt sluggish, but got it done.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Fast Update

Did a 6-mile Father's Day run this morning. Love the fact that my husband is willing to get up at the crack of dawn on what should be his day to relax in order to drive me to a race and sit around for an hour waiting for me to get back!

I finished in 65 minutes with a 10:54 pace. I was quite pleased with my time.

More of a recap to follow tomorrow.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Biking with Eric

I arranged for an early morning babysitter (don't all teenage babysitters love to come over at 7 a.m?!), and Eric and I took off for a 28 mile bike ride this morning. I had been looking forward to our ride all week.

We both keep marveling at ourselves in that we used to be such couch potatoes. Now we get up voluntarily at 6 a.m. on a weekend to exercise! I gotta say, though, riding a bike doesn't feel like exercise. It feels like fun and being a kid.

We took off by 7:30 and rode all the way out to Woodward Park. Getting to the park itself was a little over 11 miles. Then we did an out and back on the trail where I do a lot of my runs. From there we headed back home. The whole ride took 2 hours and 31 minutes, and according to my Garmin, we kept an 11.3 pace. I would have liked to maintain a 12.0 pace, but oh well. It has to do with Weight Watcher points and how much I can earn for minutes spent exercising. Silly, I know.

We took a few photos at our official turn around point.

The bike I am riding doesn't belong to me. It belongs to a lady that Eric works with, and she doesn't use it anymore. I asked if I could borrow it to test it out. This morning was the test run.

Hanging out with my new bike...or new to me. The longer I rode, the more comfortable I felt. Now I need clip shoes. And a jersey. And bike shorts. And and and!!

We had a lot of fun. The best part is that I'm not nearly as tired as I was after the last long ride that I did. Good thing because we have several things to get done this afternoon including signing up for a 6 mile run tomorrow.

I'm already looking forward to my next ride! Could there be a triathlon in my future? It's not out of the realm of possibilities and dreams.

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Distance: 3 miles
Time: 31:21/10:28 avg

I had spaghetti and lasagna for dinner. Then I went out for a 3 mile run. Then I got home and broke into massive amounts of hives from head to toe.

I have pretty severe allergies. I'm on shots and medication. I am allergic to certain foods, but the only ones I really avoid are shellfish because they can kill me.

However, I always forget that if I eat tomato based foods and then exercise, the chances of me breaking out in hives increase significantly. Tonight they were bad.

I've got Benadryl running through my system along with a cool bath. The itching is finally subsiding.

P.S. I also ran 1.3 miles this morning. I meant to do three, but quit. I'm pleased I got the three done tonight, even if I am itchy and uncomfortable. Child #1 and I need to get our allergy shots tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Eat...then run

Distance: 4.0 miles
Time: Just under 48 minutes/just under 12 minute miles

I started out fairly strong this morning and managed to run two miles in less than 22 minutes.

Then I turned around to run home and saw stars. I forgot to eat breakfast.

I'm not sure if "forgot" is quite the right word. I chose not to eat breakfast. I woke up at 5:30 and was out the door by 6. I am in no mood to eat that early. However, if I am going to choose to run early to beat the heat, I guess I better choose to fuel myself with food to sustain any sort of run.

Ugh. You'd think after two years of running I'd be a bit more careful with stuff like this.

Oh, and the only reason I ran outside this morning rather than on the treadmill is because Child #1 told me to go outside because he didn't want the treadmill noise interfering with his cartoon watching! Hmmmph.

I'm going to start leaving a granola bar and a banana on my nightstand. That way I can wake up at 5:30, lie in bed and eat, and then get up and be out the door at 6. I have to be back by 7 before Eric leaves for work. It's a finely tuned system we've got going on here!

Maybe I'll just save strength training for the evenings since there's not that much on tv to watch.

And no, I haven't uploaded pictures yet. Apparently walking the 40 steps to my bedroom to get the proper cord to plug into the laptop is too difficult for me to manage.

One of these days I'm going to get my whole life in order! And right now, I need to type up lesson plans for summer school. That starts Monday.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Two Good Runs

Short post:

After not running at all last week, I had two good runs this weekend.

Run#1: A two mile race, and I won first place in my age group! Wow!

Run#2: Five miles at the park today. I kept a pace of 11:03. Yay!

I'll hopefully write more and post pictures tomorrow.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Vacation Run

Distance: 4 miles/10:35 avg. pace

We were in Moorpark (southern CA) this weekend to attend the bridal shower for our nephew's fiance. I was determined to get my "long" run in. We didn't get down there until midnight on Friday night and enjoyed festivities all day Saturday.

After our family dinner, I let my stomach settle, and then Eric rode his bike slowly with me while I ran. I would have gotten lost amidst all those crazy streets!

I had a GREAT run! Love those kind. The kind where you actually feel successful.

There were hills (at least they felt like hills to me!), but I powered through them. I also ran sans music. I figured since Eric was kind enough to poke along on his bike with me, I might as well talk to him.

I've got to get a running buddy, because the miles fly by so much faster when there is someone to talk to. The few times I've run races with my friend Elaine and now this weekend proves to me I run well with others!

I've got three miles scheduled for tonight. I am toying with the idea of making Monday my "speed" workout day. I put it in quotes, because speed for me is anything around the 10 minute pace mark. But maybe I might push myself. Who knows?

It's the last week of school. Yay! Child #1 was supposed to go on a field trip to a local fun park, but due to the chance of thunderstorms, it was cancelled. That was a bummer. Instead Eric picked the two of us up and took us to lunch. Then he and Evan hung out for the afternoon getting ice cream and playing catch. I went back to work, finished report cards, organized awards, added up CJSF scores, and figured out honor roll! Fun stuff.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Crabby and Busy

Distance: 3.5 miles
Time: 44 minutes
Run: 3 miles/5.3 speed

I'm feeling crabby, tired, sad and a bit overwhelmed. The second to last week of school is always hell for me because I'm the 7th grade teacher. So what you ask? Well, the 7th grade class puts on a fancy shmancy luncheon farewell for the outgoing 8th grade class on the Friday before the last week of school. The party is in two days. I'm stressing. I'm not looking for pity or sympathy - just looking to vent.

And my throat hurts.

And academic awards have to be finished.

And grades have to be finished and entered...after I score a few more papers.

And we have a graduation to attend tomorrow night.

And we are leaving out of town right after the 8th grade graduation on Friday night.

And I need to dye my hair. Okay, that one is a vanity issue, but still, I've been meaning to do this for over a week.

Yesterday I was feeling fairly okay.


Post bicycle trainer workout.

Today I'm not so perky. See?

Feeling down.

Today was weigh in day at Weight Watchers. I worked out several times this past week, and I tracked what I ate and stayed within my points. I didn't gain or lose. I stayed exactly the same at 153 pounds. Grrrr. It's frustrating to do it "right" and not see results.

I know there can be many reasons for this. It's still irritating.

Now that I've griped and complained, I'll try to think of a few bright sides.

-I ran my full three miles tonight without stopping at a 5.3 speed.
-I did 10 minutes of leg strength training.
-I have great parents helping me out with the farewell party.
-I didn't gain weight.
-I am blessed to work at a school where I can go on field trips with my first grader like we did today.
-I have a husband who helps me tremendously and finished all the place cards for the farewell party.

Lastly, this is something I don't talk about too often, but I'm missing my dad. Next Wednesday will be two years since he died. It feels like the last week of school is always going to be hard for me. Dad died on the Monday of the last week of school. Even though the actual date is Wednesday, June 8 this year, I'm dreading Monday.

I just think of all that has happened in two years that he won't see. He isn't going to ever meet my sister's new husband or meet her new baby. He didn't see me finish my half marathon. He doesn't know that Evan lost his first tooth. He didn't see my mom retire.

I'm just getting myself worked up, so I'll stop. It's just a bittersweet time of year for me.

Tonight more than ever, this headband was needed:

Here's to a happier day tomorrow.

Day One Complete

Distance: 3.5 miles
Time: 44:30ish
Run: 3 miles/5.2 speed

I officially started training for my second half marathon on Monday. I had a pretty good run on the treadmill at a 5.2 speed. "Pretty good" is defined as not having to stop to take a break! And the fact that I was going over a 5.0 speed is a bonus as well!

I also did 10 minutes of ab work after I ran. I am declaring Day One a success.

Now here's my question. Why is three miles still so hard? I knew I'd finish the run, but Jiminy Cricket, it is still an effort.

Last night I had Eric put my bike on his trainer so I could "ride" through the living room. At first I didn't feel like I was getting a workout, but sticking with it for 30 minutes, I started to feel a burn. If I pedaled faster, I got a better workout. Go figure! In any case, being on the bike at any speed was better for me than sitting on the couch at zero speed!

I enjoyed the different option for exercise, but I don't like the fact that I have no idea how fast or far I am going. I don't do well with the whole rate of perceived exertion. I ALWAYS overestimate how hard I am working.

After biking, I spent 10 minutes working on my arm strength. Strength training is my goal for this ten week training session.

I also signed up for the Salinas Half Marathon yesterday. It's official. I'll be running the half on Saturday, Aug. 6. That will keep me motivated all summer. Yay!