Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Lessons/observations on the Run

Sorry it's been a bit since I last wrote... The girls had the flu for a week, despite having a flu shot. I now swear by two things as I did not get the flu after them (I had the flu shot the same time they did): mixing 1/4 tsp of cinnamon with 1 tsp of honey and eating it once or twice a day, airborne, and sleep. They're back to school, I readjusted and have been doing a few different things. Thursday, I start the Certificate of Nonprofit Management program at Rollins College's The Crummer Graduate School of Business. My first class is "Strategic Planning for Nonprofits" which should be good. I always loved school, so I plan to enjoy learning, hope to meet some people in the nonprofit world that can further help in my search, and learn things from a slightly different perspective. I came close, yet again, to another position but was down to two and the other person got the job because they had more direct work experience but they really, really liked me according to the HR person. My only question is how do I get that direct work experience until someone gives me the chance... But I know that it will all work out, it is just a matter of time.
I have been doing things for the Junior League Community Council that I head, a little bit for our headquarters move, and other stuff for the National Communications Team I lead for my sorority. Plus Time with my little ladies...

My runs and yoga have been good. Averaging just under a 12 minute mile. And when I say just under, I mean just under. This morning's average was 11:45 per mile. Sunday's was 11:55. I was really surprised at that one since I ran at 1:00 pm, which was super hot. I was drenched and dripping with sweat by the time I was done. But I am super excited about my progress thus far. Amusingly, I discovered a folder that had my certificates and awards from high school which contained my "Varsity" cross country certificate. I only got that because I was a graduating senior... I ran JV the whole year. It said my best time for a 2 mile race was 20:21, or essentially a 10:10 mile. I may be no speed racer, but I get 'er done.

There are a few things I realized while running and at moments in between:
1. My kids are funny and have a great sense of humor. Poor Mr. Darcy bears the brunt of their jokes, but Mr.Stinkypants (aka Mr. Darcy) doesn't seem to mind.
2. I like to run. I do NOT like getting out of bed to do it. It seems like I have to convince myself to get out of the bed, especially on a weekend morning.
3. My hamstrings pretend to be really old rubber bands. You know, the ones you use in a pinch and just hope it won't break on you. I keep stretching them. They'll get used to this again.
4. Yoga has to be my cross trainer right now. I walked instead of yoga on a non-run day and my lower back wasn't thrilled. Stretching works.
5. I bought Yoga Conditioning for Athletes and can't wait to do it tomorrow morning. I'm watching it as I right this, and am glad that I primarily do not look but listen to the video as I do yoga... There is a guy with a Mohawk, one ear pierced and a nipple ring. I am all for individuality and adorning your body the way you choose, but when they show him transition into certain poses I keep worrying he will catch the nipple ring...
6. Quinoa is one of our new favorite foods... Even Mr. Darcy likes it. He raved about quinoa burgers during meatless Monday dinner. And he didn't go for cheese itz later either!
7. I run without noticing time nearly as much when I run with someone. I ran with a friend last Thursday and I kept missing the 3 minute mark - we did a couple 4:1s and a 5:1 on accident.
8. This made me realize that I can do 4:1s, so starting with this morning's workout I am doing 4:1s.
9. I find myself on my runs thinking about running strategy for the Goofy Challenge, despite it being a year away. Yet when I looked at a date on my calendar in August and see a 9 mile run, I get nervous. Of course, my major running strategy is just to finish both races.
10. My bike has been calling me, but I think this year I need to be a runner.
11. It feels weird only doing one sport, although I am doing yoga too I don't necessarily see it as a sport. But it's good strength & flexibility training.
12. I'm going to need to find some 5ks and 10ks along the way, maybe a 1/2 Mary too. I need to remember what it is like to run in a race and not my neighborhood. There's a different mentally when you know where the mile marks are and when you don't.
13. Running at 5:30 am is so much better than running in the afternoons. Much to hot. Plus I am mentally more tired in the afternoon. So my talks to get myself out of bed will continue.
14. I discovered the show Downton Abbey, and a now addicted to it. I am not a tv watcher at all, so this is quite something.
15. I wish I had never stopped exercising. I absolutely feel great after every workout.

2 1/3 weeks of couch to Goofy done. 50 2/3 to go!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Thursday Thoughts

I realized last night when out for my walk that I have a need for some sport competition, and I am even happier I've decided to do my personal couch to Goofy Challenge. You know you have it bad when you see someone running slowly about .2 miles ahead and you think to yourself, "at the pace I am walking, I think I can catch him." And you can't help but inwardly grin when you do.

Why I missed my morning window to do yoga is a long story involving two children who, while still having temperatures, are acting pretty healthy. Let's just say it's difficult to fully immerse yourself in yoga practice when you have comments like, "you know Mommy, the guy on tv is a lot more flexible than you are," "how much longer will this last? Scooby Doo is way more interesting," "it looks like you're eating your shirt when your in that dog thing," "would it help if i sit on your back while you do that" and my personal favorite, "what do inhale and exhale mean and why do they keep saying to do it?"

It also dawned on me that in figuring out my run pace yesterday, I included the cool down where I was walking a bit slow. So today, I did 1.9 miles during warm up & run/walk in 23 minutes which was a12:06 mi pace. With cool down, I did a total of 2.3 miles. I feel a bit better about that pace, but look forward to getting to my goal of a 10 minute mile pace. I was a bit stiff today - you may remember my chronically stiff hamstrings. At the end of the workout, I almost could audibly hear my hamstrings creaking. So I did 25 minutes of easier yoga to loosen things up. Ladybug woke up and watched me & the yoga video. Evidently Rodney Yee is not cute because he has a pony tail & it is strange that they do yoga outside. Then I stretched out my lower back and got ready for an interview.

The interview went well, but the outcome remains to be seen. A few times already I have been narrowed down to the top candidates and then it goes to someone with work experience in the nonprofit sector despite my "impressive volunteer and leadership experience." I know the right door will open at the right time. But at least in this interview the person was honest and told me that they thought I would be amazingly good in the position and she really like me, after telling me that they had other applicants who already had work experience in similar positions. Yet I feel positive that something good (and hopefully it's what I interviewed for today) will come my way.

In the meantime, I am still having fun with the ladies. Today they created a treasure hunt for me so that I would have to follow the notes they left for me around the house to find the treasure (pencils, crayons and ladybug erasers). I have missed the playground after school but when the fevers prevent attendance, the playground is out as well. (Angelfish's fever is finally gone as of today, but Ladybug's is lingering still.). We are also reading Harry Potter, well I read it out loud and they read along or listen. (Angelfish once informed me I was slow because she could read in her head faster than I could out loud.). We are already on the 4th book, which we are reading with the understanding that if anything is too scary that we will stop. Angelfish has declared that she does not like to read unless it is a science book or nonfiction, and that she only loves math and art. Ladybug on the other hand loves reading and is only ok with math. They both like science ... So I bought them a book of science experiments for kids, which they want to start doing - 1 a Saturday is their plan. But we need to build our soda can robot first.

My advocacy work is moving along slowly, although now I am not working on a bill but behind the scenes to work with government agencies to see what we can accomplish without the legislative process. We've been able to get an agreement on what a food desert is, which is a good start for figuring out where the gaps are.

That's life in the slowed down lane. I'm having a hard time getting the blog to post my replies to comments so 1) thank you for the encouragement and 2) I do not have a Tri on the calendar as of yet, but my neighbor mentioned a Tri in April that he's thinking about doing. So who knows?

What races do you have planned for the year?

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Let the Goofy Training Begin!

I've planned out my year between now and Goofy. I've even gotten a couple of people who say they'll do it with me. Of course, when I started training for the Augusta 70.3 I started with a much larger group and ended with 2 or 3 people. But I have every day on my calendar. I'm using Galloway training. I have one year, so I am starting part way in on 5k training, then 10k training which will take me to the 6 month point, and then I start The Galloway goofy challenge training regimen. On The non-run days I am going to do yoga and/or walk... Although I uncovered my bike trainer in the garage the other day... That just might work it's way in there too. I have been thinking about cycling lately, although I have a little fear about being clipped in after more than 2 years since my last ride...

Since the ladies were home with their colds, I did about 40 minutes of yoga. Then I cleaned the house hoping to kill as many germs as possible and hung out with the girls who vegetated completely in front of the tv. Brains were probably dribbling out if their ears. But at least I got them to read some and to do their math homework.

I've decided we are having meatless Mondays at our house, to Mr. Darcy's chagrin. He claims he's not full if he doesn't eat meat. I think it's because he doesn't like adding a salad to whatever it is. Either way it's good for all of us so we'll adjust. I made a southwest quinoa salad (quinoa, black beans, red pepper, cilantro and a dressing of olive oil with lime, cumin and spike). The first time I've cooked quinoa and only the 2nd time eating it. I have to say that I LOVE the stuff, and luckily the Little Ladies did too. Angelfish avoided the red peppers because heaven forbid she eat a vegetable, but Ladybug asked for more and suggested we have it again next week. Did I mention that Ladybug's favorite shows are cupcake wars and chopped?

Both of the girls slept through the night, which meant so did I. : ). Right as I was tying my last lace, I hear Ladybug...101 temp. Mr. Darcy got up and sat with her so I could still run. Yay!

I have to be honest. I have barely run in 2 years or so. I have been walking at a good pace, but not running. I decided that I would do 3:1s this week and if it was easy I'd move to 4:1s. I'd like to get to either 5:1s or 7:1s. I used to do 5:1s to keep my back happy but I am wondering if being lighter that I could get to 7:1s. I'll see how things go.

So off I set doing my 5 min warm up walk and then started running. 3:1s for 18 minutes and the last one was a 4 minute run. 2.2 miles, about a 14 minute mile pace. Sad that I can power walk it faster than run, but I also know that it is the start and that I did run slowly because I wasn't sure if I could do 3:1s. But I plan to get to a 10 minute mile pace. We will see... I think the last time I did a 10 minute mile consistently was in high school. I've never been speedy, but I can get it done. But then I never thought I could do the goofy either. Anything is possible and I have a year to prove it.

But in the meantime I am off to tend to my sick Ladybug who is literally moaning because she feels bad right now.... Temp up to 2 pm.... I think I'll take my 2nd airborne of the day while I am at it...

Sunday, January 13, 2013

No Color Run

Yesterday afternoon Angelfish took... A nap. I should have known that something was wrong. Two hours later, she emerged and the first words out if her mouth were, "Mommy, my eyes hurt." The only time my eyes have ever hurt are when I've had a high fever. Sure enough: 102.6 burning up. She also complained of her stomach hurting really bad and her throat was sore. Last year Angelfish had strep twice, and she has two grandfather's prone to getting strep, one of who had scarlet fever from it. Yet, I was hopeful. I told myself that maybe she'd be ok by morning.

So I set my alarm for 6:30 am and said I would check on her and if ok, I'd head to the color run, do the race then come straight home. At 4:30 am a little voice said out loud what my mind had told me would happen, "Mommy, I feel horrible." 103 temp,a raspy voice, a thick cough, sore throat, fast heart beat & fast breathing. So I gave her more Advil and looked up the time that the minute clinic and urgent cares would open. Wet wash cloth & snuggles.

No race, but definitely was where I needed to be. Turns out its a virus of some sort. And about 1/2 an hour after we got back from the minute clinic, Ladybug looked at me and said, "Mommy, my eyes hurt..." Her fever is not quite as high as Amanda's and she doesn't have the cough... Yet.

So I am upping my vitamin c, trying a cinnamon & honey home remedy and hoping that I'll stay well. My couch to Goofy training starts tomorrow...

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Morning Revelations

1. My jeans are tight since the holidays, but I am making much better food choices and getting better at preventing stress/emotional eating and decided to delay gratification for bad stuff I might want to eat and finding that one I put it out of my mind that I don't miss not eating eat!
2. This one isn't too new. But based on the weight training I did on Wednesday, which by Thursday afternoon made it so it was hard to stand up, my abs are still relatively ok and so are my arms but my thighs need some reconditioning.
3. I am not ready for a real race... I woke up worrying about how bad my time might be at the Color Run tomorrow. Then I remembered that they don't even time the run, and it's all for fun. At every 1k they douse you with a cornstarch based paint powder... I'll be sure to wear a hat and sunglasses for protection. And enjoy the after color party with the kids and Mr. Darcy who are all going to wear white shirts to get colored up!
4. It is really important to me to have Mr. Darcy and the little ladies at my races. They are being brave and going tomorrow to the race. The girls have informed me that I am amazing for going to run a 5k. : )
5. Pancakes made with oats, cottage cheese, egg whites, cinnamon are really good! Ladybug (our resident self described foodie) finished her pancakes and announced, "Life is really too good!" Enron Mr. Darcy liked them...
6. I feel better when I don't eat things with gluten in it. Attempting to go gluten free... We'll see how it goes. They stick that stuff in everything.
7. Laying in bed, I realized that I no longer believe in "not being able to do" anything. If I want to, I will do it. I think that is what all those triathlons were about - proving to myself I could do anything and that somehow I could survive anything.
8. #7 made me think... I've Been skydiving, parasailing, done a 1/2 Mary, a 1/2ironman. But the thing that always made me say that person is crazy? The Goofy Challenge: a 1/2 Marathon on Saturday followed by a marathon on Sunday. A number of people I know have done the Goofy and some are doing the Disney 1/2 or the marathon this weekend.
9. I decided... I am doing it. Come this time January 2014, I will be doing the Goofy Challenge. It is a done deal. I even looked up training schedules already. And at the route map for this year, and at some spectator info for the family.
10. Don't think #9 scares the poo out of me. It does, and I know it. The whole "what if i train and fail?" But that' the best reason to conquer it. Plus as I said to the FB pals racing this weekend... They've already won just by showing up. Unfortunately, I know my brain, which does not work in partial victories. But that is something I too am working on.

Anyone want to join me for Goofy Challenge 2014? I have my workouts figured out for the entire year leading up to the Goofy Challenge (provided it is correct that the dates will be Jan 11-12, 2014), thanks to the Jeff Galloway website which has everything from 5k to Goofy challenge training schedules. I am doing the 5k training (with a couple weeks removed to make it work) then the 10k training and then the goofy challenge training and it leads exactly to the 2014 goofy challenge. Starts this week!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Back to School, Irony of a 4 Mile walk & a 5K

Ladybug and Angelfish are back to school and I am back to healthy eating and workouts. I cannot say i hit every day of December of working out. I did walk Christmas Eve and the day after Christmas, another day in there too, And New Year's eve. then it was january. I took the girls to the beach one day last week and we not only walked more than a mile but also did some speed training (aka "I'll race you!"), and did an hour of yoga Thursday, and I am pretty sure that our day at the science museum was about a mile of walking, although I am not sure that counts. (Ladybug was mad that I wouldn't stop as soon as she got up so I explained to her the importance of exercise while finishing and then sent her off to draw a picture.
With New Year's just passing I am sure there are a lot of resolutions floating around. I personally hate resolutions. You make a list of things that you are going to stop or start and put all this pressure on yourself and go back to your old ways by March if not before.
So this year, I sat down with myself and was honest. I am seeking something in my life. I know I want to help others in a meaningful, life impacting way and I know I am passionate about some things that I think all people are by nature of their humanity have a right to: food, shelter, and health. I've decided to keep looking for the opportunity to work in this arena, preferably in a paid position, but I will continue volunteering and my Boards while that may arise. I am contemplating getting a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Rollins as well to help make it clear that I understand how my transferable skills from practicing law work work favorably in the nonprofit sector. I have accepted too the fact that food, while always there, is not a friend to rely on other than to make my waistline expand (as it unfortunately has from stress eating followed by holiday eating - entitlement to cookies, candies & cake because I want it, I realize is some inner child of mine who needs to be tamed... I have to say after denying myself of sweets and bread for so long and so strictly, it was a ticking time bomb of overeating ready to explode. I am now tweaking...). So I am working on a new attitude towards food. I am seeking God more closely too. I won't talk much about that on the blog as I find that to be more personal and not something I necessarily want to put here, but what I will say is that my choice to leave the law and go to the nonprofit sector and things I want differently in my life feel in my heart to be something that God has been calling me to for years, and somehow over the past year I finally started really listening & not trying to talk myself out of doing. So I am traveling that road.
Do I see these as New Year's Resolutions? No. I see them as an extension of last year and the journey of my life as a work in progress, striving to go the distance to be the person I am meant to be...even if I am not sure exactly what that means.
Which leads me to my 4 mile walk this morning. Despite the house needing a nice cleaning, groceries to do, laundry, job searching, and oversleeping (shocking to think that going to be at midnight makes it difficult to get up a 5:30, right?), not to mention the car needing fixing a/c went out as my Xmas present from the car plus it needs regular maintenance & an oil change), I decided to put myself first and get my much needed 4 mile Monday walk in. So I dropped the ladies off at school, came home, grabbed the cellphone and hit the road. It is cold here by Florida standards - 56! In my running shorts and t-shirt, the 1st 3/4 mile was rather chilly and I told myself if I was still cold by the 1.5 mile turn I'd call it a day. Well, for walking I was booking it today! I was nice and warm & sweating by 1.5 miles and declared I was headed for the full 4. And the little competitor in my head made a reappearance as I turned the corner to start mile 3... There was a guy in a sweatsuit walking a good bit of the way up the road. Probably around 1/2 mile up.I decided to pass him. My legs were a movin', I was sweating and all I could do is pay attention to how I was gaining on him. Yup, I passed him at about the 3/4 mile point. And when I got home (the loops I do end in my driveway), I had walked 4 miles in right under 52 minutes... Which is about a 13 minute mile pace. The irony? That is slightly faster than what was once my RUNNING pace. And I was tempted to keep going another mile, until I saw the dog through the window (whose hip popped out of socket when Ladybug accidentally dropped her on the 30th, almost one year to the day of her being hit by a car and having the same injury) was so excited I was home that she was bouncing up & down. Tomorrow will either be a 1 mile walk and 1 hour of yoga or 2 miles and weight training.
Oh and my 5K. I haven't mentioned it because I am not really looking at it as a race because 1) I am not sure how much of it I will actually run; 2) I haven't "trained" for it like I used to train for a race; and 3) saying it out loud (or in blog land) holds me accountable, and only now (under 1 week away from race day) was I ready for that.
So January 13th, I will be doing the Color Run here in Orlando. First race of any sort since my last triathlon, and I haven't decided whether I will run, walk or do a mix of the two. I am definitely in a different fitness level since the last one, despite knowing that the best thing for you is to never get out of shape in the first place. Yet with the schedule I used to keep, I probably would have imploded if I squeezed in exercise too ....I should have kept it as a priority, but life shifts and we learn, right?
I don't know that I'll do a race report, but who knows! The thing I do know is I am trying to be gentle with myself about the whole experience because I tend to have high expectations sometimes even in spite of reality.
Hope your year is starting off right!