Saturday, July 31, 2010


I decided to take a yoga class the day after my extended run. My hip flexor quite enjoyed it. The next day I decided to do intervals on the DREADmill during lunch. Eight minutes into my workout, the fire alarm goes off. Can you believe that???? I stepped outside and security guards assured me that yes, there was an emergency and we needed to vacate the building. It wasn't too much of an emergency because less than ten minutes later, we were allowed back into the building. Three of the women that were in the gym with me, and started to work out the same time I did, decided that they weren't going to finish their workout. The alarm was a "sign" that they should not workout. I laughed and started my workout over.

I struggled on Thursday trying to decide what my workout was going to be. I wanted to go to boot camp but I also didn't think I was going to get a run in on Friday, so I wanted to get that in while I could. I texted a couple of people and they said the same thing that was in the very, very, VERY back of my mind... Run to boot camp. Why did I know that was coming? I had the hubster drop my equipment and extra water off at boot camp and I made my way there. As soon as I arrived, I was informed that our warm up was a 1/4 mile run/walk. WHAT???? I just freakin' ran 2+ miles! I went ahead and did it anyway because... Well, it felt great! That following hour was torture. I was reminded quite quickly that it had been a while since I incorporated strength training into my workouts. Usually eight pound weights would start to burn during my twelfth rep. I was dying after two. We worked on the stability ball - my favorite - so that added some joy to my workout. After the hour of laughter and pain was over, my hubby arrived and gave me the opportunity to hop in the car. I thought about it. I won't lie. I thought about it long and hard. I went ahead and ran back home. I was 1.75 mile under my planned mileage for the day, so I decided to run home.

Saturday morning, an adorable little man took it upon himself to wake me up. Captain Awesome was making me laugh and my heart smile. I did not want to leave him. He has such adorable mannerisms and expressions. KISA and I laid on the floor being entertained by the awesomeness that is our son. Finally, I made myself leave my baby boy and went out for a run. My body did not appreciate that decision very much. The first 1/4 mile of my run was absolute torture. Not only was my body feeling it, my eyes were being tortured. There were people running the opposite direction as I, and they looked great. I knew that I didn't look as awesome they did.

This run had me pondering one question. Did I miss some sort of memo? Since when did the 80's era douche bag gesture of the finger gun come back? You've seen it. Hand in a fist with the exception of the index finger pointed outwards while the thumb is up. It is usually accompanied by a wink. I only ask because during my long run, three - count them THREE - runners pointed at me with their personal finger guns. One of these runners really hit a nerve with me. He made me so angry. He comes bounding towards me, shirtless and wearing Texas flag shorts. Oh, how I wished that I could trip him after his bang, bang gesture. The third person that decided to do this changed my perspective on the annoyance of this gesture - somewhat. It was about mile five. I was done for. I truly felt I had nothing left to give. I saw another runner gliding towards me. Sweat was pouring down his head. He looked as though he had been running for two hours - solely based upon the perspiration on his clothing. About three steps before he reached me, he did it. There was something different about this particular db shooting. Although he was drenched in sweat, he radiated this inexplicable energy. He was smiling a glistening white smile. I have to say... I felt rejuvenated. I couldn't help myself. I began laughing. It was all so ridiculous, I couldn't help but laugh out loud. That LOL'ing preoccupied my thoughts as I forged up the hill that was defeating me only moments before.

All in all, this was a great week - as far as training goes. I exceeded my planned mileage by almost five miles. Although Saturday's long run wasn't the icing on the cake - running out of water twice, chapped buttocks from clenching so hard until I could find a bathroom, frustration from lack of sidewalks on my planned route - I felt relieved after it was over. Yes, onlookers may have thought I was some crazy person as I traveled the streets arguing with myself (yes, out loud) about what I had left to give. I realized that I have more than I think.

Four weeks down, eight weeks to go.

ACTUAL MILEAGE: 19.83 miles
ACCOMPLISHMENT: I didn't give up.

Monday, July 26, 2010


When life gives you lemons... Go for a run!

Today was an emotional roller coaster. I just could not get out of this horrible mood. Around lunch time, my sister suggested I grab my running book and go to a park and take in some nature. She sent me a link to a local park and even gave a little sales pitch of the park (there are roses there). I would like to publicly acknowledge that she was right. I skipped to the chapter entitled "Potty Talk: Peeing, Pooping, Passing Gas, and Periods" and my foul mood seemed to lift away. ***On a side note, I strongly recommend Run LIKE A MOTHER to any of you women runners. It's pure greatness!*** That chapter, along with my sister's goofy text messages sent me back to work with a smile on my face and pep in my step.

That all went away in an instant. I received devastating news about some family members that had me emotionally spent. I received the news while I was at work. To add to the slew of emotions I was feeling, embarrassment was heaped into the pile. My boss walked by my office as I was reviewing details of this incident in an email. He could tell something was wrong but I dare not tell him. I gave him the, "Ummm... Yes I'm fine." tone that also implies "no further questions are welcome and I'd appreciate you vacating my office." As soon as he left I shut my door and went to pieces. KISA, again appropriately named, took me home. I swear I was in shock. I was angry. Sad. Defeated. There was this chunk of vomit that was stuck at the back of my throat that would not expel itself. I didn't even think I could face the walk to the elevators because I did not want the look on my face to solicit questions. I stopped the tears enough to dash to the stairwell that sits directly across from my office. As soon as the door shut, I allowed the tears to continue to flow as I descended eleven flights of stairs.

I came home. Took some phone calls, made some others. Cried, cursed and thought about not so pleasant thoughts. Facebook nonsense helped for about a minute. Hubby brought me ice cream and later "diet" cupcakes. I ate the ice cream but skipped the cupcakes. I let Captain Awesome know that he could have them. However, I did accept the bite the Captain offered, because it would just be plain rude if I didn't. I laid in bed trying to make sense of something that doesn't. So what do you do when something that makes no sense occurs? You do the only thing that makes sense to you. For me, that was running.

My training schedule said 3.5 miles for today. I didn't know if I was going to do that, or more. I didn't know what route I was going to take. All I knew is that I was going to run. It had rained on my way home and I dreaded the humidity that was still present, but once I took to the pavement, it all seemed to disappear. Not figuratively either. The humidity left. The heat left. God blessed my run with clouds to block the Texas sun and a breeze to get me through the therapy session I had with the road.

I felt rejuvenated just before mile three. I felt wonderful. I was with my thoughts and emotions, but my body was being strong for me. I was in the zone and just decided to keep going. At about 3.6 miles I found myself in what seemed to be a fairly new development. I had wandered into the neighborhood because I had run out of sidewalk. Not really sure how I got there, but I stopped a car and asked for directions to the last landmark I passed. I finally found myself on familiar ground and headed back home.

I felt pooped right around mile five. I got this horrible stitch under my ribs. It was painFUL!!!! I tried walking it off. It wasn't getting better. This is going to sound crazy, but the words of Sarah Bowen Shea came into my head. I had read her chapter "Mental Toughness: Training My Brain" last week. In this chapter, SBS says, "...but if your body never knows what it feels like to go longer, harder or faster, your mind will never trust that it can... Go long enough so you're super uncomfortable and every fiber of you is screaming at your brain to tell your body to slow down. Then go at least a minute - or 5 - longer." When I realized that I only had a half mile to go before I was home, I forced myself to suffer through the pain and pick up the pace. I'll be dang if I'm going to finish by walking. I wasn't sprinting, but I wasn't going at my recovery pace either. My head kept telling my body, "just one more minute longer, just one more minute longer." I got my third wind and smiled as I turned the corner into our subdivision. When I turned the corner to my street, I started sprinting. With each mailbox I reached, I told myself "harder, just a little bit harder" and I picked up speed. By the time I reached my driveway, I felt amazing... That is until the creepy guy in black shoes and white socks pulled half way up his leg gave me an oogie smile.

I'm not sure what the rest of this training week holds in store for me, but I just felt that this run deserved it's own entry.

***The picture is of a rose bush at the park that I took as proof that I followed my big seestor's advice.***

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


I had high hopes for this week. After the week prior, I just knew that I was going to accomplish great feats during my third week of training. Last week I improved my time and just felt so accomplished. On Sunday, KISA, Captain and I walked to visit some friends. We logged just over two miles that day. I was so optimistic. I told myself I was going to run in the mornings and not afternoon/evening any longer. This Texas heat is just too much for this chica. Can I just say how enticing my snooze button is so early in the morning?

Wednesday evening crept up on me and I hadn't logged any mileage for the week. Of course, I could have headed out the door and go for a run, but I hadn't hydrated at all during the day. I began drinking my water as I gripped to KISA. His response?

"Well, atleast you have something to write about this week."

I thanked and congratulated him on making it into this week's blog... Again. His smile radiated with pride.

Luckily for me, my copy of Run LIKE A MOTHER by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea arrived this same day. To read about the inner argument that Dimity (or was it Sarah? My feet are too sore to get up and check my facts with the book) faced before getting up for a run motivated me to get up at 5:30 the next morning. I felt great. About three miles into the run, I got that feeling. I felt like I could go for another three miles. If it wasn't for my day job, I would have tacked on that three extra miles.

Saturday was my long run. I had five miles scheduled, but felt like I needed to do more since I lacked in the mileage department this week. I ran a mile and was faced with a challenge. I came to a corner where I usually turn, but up ahead there was a hill. That hill was taunting me. I ran in circles on that corner until the "walk" sign illuminated. By golly, I was going to run up that hill. I proceeded. Do you know what was at the top of that hil? Yet another hill. I ran up that one, too. Next thing I knew, I found myself two miles out from my planned route, conquering a number of hills, resting upon jelly legs. I asked a man walking his dogs where I was. Once he told me, I just wanted to crumple on the sidewalk. My shock must have been written all over my face. He asked me if I had gone to far. I laughed and said "oh yes".

I turned around and took a little joy in knowing "what comes up must come down". However, those darn hills were not aware of Mr. Newton's little law of gravity. I swear. I was looking forward to the recovery going downhill. I found myself NOT going downhill. At one point, I wanted to crawl up the hills. I fought off the urge to call KISA and have him come rescue me. How the heck do you think he earned his name? I finally found myself back home, laying in my driveway. As I felt the breeze, I realized one fact: those hills made me their bitch today.

Momma's going to get herself a pedicure today!

ACTUAL MILES: 9.04 (plus 2m walk)

Thursday, July 15, 2010


My old high school drill team has recently founded an un-official alumni association. It started with pictures of the good old days. Ahhh, the memories. Sweet memories. Then, the videos began being posted... The memories. Due to the greatness of YouTube, I was able to view a few videos that had me reflecting to a different time... A more flexible time. It had me reaching for a pint of The Häagen-Dazs®, metaphorically speaking.

During this, my second week of training, these videos reminded me of the importance of stretching. The things I saw in those videos were only possible because of the stretching we did on a daily basis. Each day we would spend a good fifteen minutes stretching. My body needs that stretching. That fact is PAINFULLY obvious. I can feel the tight muscles throughout my body. Ok, dear body. I get it! Maybe I should start up with the good ole Geepette stretches. Not only will it make running less painful (Dear God, let that be true. Amen), I might be able to do a jump split again after this training plan is over!

For the most part, this week was a fun week. Yeah, I said it... FUN! I was lucky enough to share a lot of my workouts with loved ones. Sunday was suppose to be my rest day, but I decided to go for a bike ride. The Hubster joined. It was definitely a workout trying to maneuver the hills in our neighborhood, but it felt great afterwards. Monday was stretch and strengthen. Yeah, I skipped that. Instead, the family (minus Little Momma) went on a walk. We walked almost two miles. That included Captain Awesome asking me to run with him on my shoulders. He is too adorable to say no to, so I did. Ummm... Ouch! It was totally worth it because I was with my family. Tuesday was a solo run in the dire Texas heat. Never underestimate the importance of water.

I turned my two miles scheduled for Wednesday into interval training. I did Fartlek exercises on the track across the street from our subdivision. Diva joined in on the fun. Yes, it was a humbling experience to see my daughter bursts past her old momma. But whatever, she's younger than me and I can ground her if she shows me up too badly! The next day I ran over three miles with a friend during the middle of the day. It was great catching up with her, but horrible doing so in the midday heat. Next time we'll catch up over margaritas or something! I think I'm going to stick to evening runs. Maybe even early morning runs. This midday crap is for the birds.

RANDOM THOUGHT OF THE WEEK: So, what profoud thoughts did i have during my long run this week? Diapers. Yep, I said it. Diapers. It never fails. Anytime I get out on the road for a run, I have to go to the restroom. Why is this? What is the subconscious reason for this? Before I knew it, I was thinking about that astronaut that wore a diaper to drive cross country to kill her "romantic rival". It was a practical, yet disgusting, idea. Should this be something I consider? Sure, the quick three mile run isn't so bad; however, you tack on another ten miles... Then what? Yes, I "handle my business" before I head out the door, but something is still triggered. How can I go the distance, no pun intended, without... You know. Is this too much information, especially for week two? This isn't called The RAMBLINGS of an Ordinary Woman for nothing!

ACTUAL MILES: 13.11 (plus 1.83 walk and 6.41 bike ride)
ACCOMPLISMENT: Shaved five minutes off of my long run from last week!

And now, a video for your enjoyment. I'm the one on the far right.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Are Friends Really Friends Forever?

And friends are friends forever;
If the Lord's the Lord of them.
And a friend will not say never,
'Cause the welcome will not end....

I was recently thinking about this song during a run. Of course, I could only concentrate on that one line, "And friends are friends forever..." I just don't get that. Is there really such a thing as "FOREVER FRIENDS"?

There are a couple of groups of women that I'm aware of that could be considered "forever friends." One of these groups, THE FAB FIVE, have known one another since they were five years old. To this day, not a month will go by where they don't make time to spend with one another. Do they all live next door to one another? No. They are scattered throughout the Metroplex. However, their friendship is a priority for each of them. They don't let too much time pass without picking up the phone or getting in their cars to meet one another. Yes, they have families, children, jobs; but they have each other as well. They cherish their friendship as much as they do the other responsibilities that I listed.

Is this connection, this "forever" friendship a novelty? Is it more common than I am aware of? During my time of reflection, I was able to focus on where I am friendship impaired. I realize that when my imperfections show, I dismiss friends. After all, how can I expect anyone to still want to be around someone with all of my faults? I will crawl under a rock - I won't answer phone calls or emails; I won't accept invitations to the movies or pool parties. I will live the life of a hermit until they get the picture. I react this way because of my insecurities and my embarrassment. These actions have made me lose some wonderful people in my life.

One of these people is SB. She is a no-nonsense type of person. She is such a nurturing individual. She has two wonderful little boys that will never lack for love and a husband that things she hung the moon. We met by happenstance and hit it off right away. She helped me through a rough and scary divorce. She didn't sugar coat things but wasn't stingy with her support either. I will be bold enough to say that there was a strong mutual respect between us as well. That is, until I broke it.

SB quickly introduced me to her group of girlfriends. They were all loving women. However, I always felt like an outsider... These were, after all, HER friends. They all had history with one another. They grew up together, went to school with one another. I was considered their friend, but I always felt out of place. That was something that I put on myself. They didn't do anything but welcome me into their circle. SB had to move out of state and I was heartbroken. She knew I was going to miss her, but I didn't take advantage of the opportunity to tell her how much. Nor did I tell her why. After she left, I found myself distancing from this group. I kept saying that they were only my friends because of SB, and since SB is gone I should be too. I miss those girls. And I desperately miss SB.

I will think about SB the next time I find myself hiding away.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


I'm a fan of Hal Higdon's training plans. Hal helped me during my quest to accomplish my first 5K and 10K. He's never failed me before and I doubt he would fail me this time. This week would be all about doing it. "Just get the mileage in," as the Hubby would say.

I intended to start some pre-training-training last week. I wanted to do some easy runs as well as just hit the gym to prepare for the start of my official training. I began on Monday by doing some strength training during lunch at the gym. An hour later I found myself in my underwear and a towel with, what I was told but have no memory of, a handful of calendar quality paramedics surrounding me in the women's locker room. After a weekend of basking in the sun and only drinking 12 ounces of water in three days, dehydration triggered my seizures. What ensued the following week was fear. I was fearful to return to the gym. Had I drank enough water? Should I OVER hydrate to compensate? Fear kept me from the gym and pavement that week.

As I began my "official" training week this week, the fear remained. Hal had me starting with strength and stretching on Monday. I talked myself out of that workout. Tuesday was my first scheduled run. I had to do three miles. I was still overwhelmed with fear. Fear kept me from getting out of bed that morning for my early run. Fear, and a coworker, kept me from a midday run. I did not want a repeat of last week's event. After having dinner with an old friend, I came home and slipped into my workout gear. It was after 8:00 and I just needed to get it done before the day was over and I lost two days from this plan.

Once upon a time I would start off running and not stop until I returned home. I knew that it would not be the same as "last time." So, I chose to power walk for the first five minutes. This was a strategy that I continued the entire week. Before long I was running. I felt jiggly parts that had stopped jiggling a few months ago. I felt my compression shorts compressing. I felt, what seemed like, every part of my body during the run. I wasn't as fast as I was two months ago, but I tried not to focus on that part... Ok, I lie. I deeply wanted to run with a huge sign that said, "I WAS FASTER TWO MONTHS AGO!" or "THIS IS JUST MY EASY RUN." or "GIVE ME A BREAK, I JUST RAN UPHILL... FOR TWO MILES... IN THE SNOW..." Anything to justify my speed, or lack thereof. I was scheduled for three miles, but a mile in I decided to turn around and only complete two miles. It was my first run back and the pizza I had for dinner wasn't helping.

I was scheduled to run two miles on Wednesday, but tacked on another mile in light of my failure the day prior. My body felt the repurcussions from the day before. The fact that there were walkers on my route gave me some joy. As I was passing them I smiled a little. Yes, they were walking, but atleast I was passing someone!

I needed to bang out three miles on Friday. This time hubby wanted to run with me. It was a rainy Texas afternoon. I remembered my most favorite running excursion with hubby when we first began dating. We ran in the pouring rain. It was during lunch on a workday. We returned to the gym and stood outside ringing our soaked clothing out before we entered. It was the best run (most fun) that I ever had. After I remembered that run, I agreed to go. We were going to pick up Captain Awesome; we figured he would enjoy the adventure. Running in the rain brings a new level of refreshment. Have you ever heard that saying, "You make plans and God laughs."? He was laughing on Friday. We got less than a quarter mile into the run and the rain stopped. Running in the hot, humid, Texas heat is not what I signed on for. We powered through with KISA reminding me that I just needed to get the mileage in. If he was not there to support me, there is no way that I could have finished. We alternated running and walking. Sixty nine minutes, a few bouts of sprinting, and one bout of vommitting later; the three miles had been completed.

It was with utter relief that I embarked on my last run for the week. Saturday was my scheduled long run. Four miles. My body is still sore from the beating it has endured this week. I didn't let it keep me from going on my run. This run is what it is all about. This was the best run of the week. Did I break any of my personal records? No. Did I run at race pace? Not even close. Did I escape? Yes! I was back. I got lost in my thoughts. My mind was all over the place. Maybe some of those posts will turn into future blogs. I sunk back into the security of my runs. I even found myself running and dancing at the same time. What a sight! My lower body was running while my upper body was movin' and groovin' to the tunes in my ears. I found my way home and sunk dipped my head in the pool to cool off.

Week one - done! Only eleven more weeks to go.

QUESTION: How do you keep your face clear while training in this Texas heat?

PLANNED: 12 miles, 30 mins strength/stretch, 30 mins cross-training
ACTUAL: 12.93 miles

Friday, July 9, 2010


Regardless of being told that running blogs bore some people, I've decided to log my training as I tackle my next fitness goal. Let me start by sharing how I began this journey.

KISA and I had to delay the start of our relationship because he was in the process of training for a full marathon. This was an insanity that I just could not wrap my head around. I never understood why people would run 3.1 miles (a 5K) much less a full 26.2 miles! I had, in the past, participated in 5K's; however, I typically walked those. Regardless of the neon sign that flashed "CRAZY" on KISA's loveable head, I chose to begin a relationship with this unstable man. A couple of months after his marathon feat, he participated in a 5K with a few of his friends. I got up bright and early to cheer my man on. It was cold and too early for me to be awake on a weekend. I didn't understand why he needed to drive an hour and a half to go for a "jog". Nevermind that he actually had to pay a registration fee to participate in this mass insanity. I took advantage of that generous commute and slept on the way there.

I was a good girl and cheered on my now hubby as well as the friends that had joined him. This was the first 5K for one of them, as well. It took less than forty minutes for them all to cross the finish line and we loaded back up into the vehicle and headed to breakfast. Yes... I got up early and didn't even get breakfast prior to freezing my bum off.

As I settled into a cozy sleep position in the back seat, these race participants and I began to discuss how this whole running obsession began. Apparently, KISA had been convinced to run a marathon during a night of partaking in adult beverages. Once I learned of this I made a declaration before drifting off into a sweet slumber, "I don't care how drunk I get, I will run a marathon when hell freezes over."

Fast forward a few months. My company began a coed softball team. Growing up I loved playing softball so I jumped at the chance to play. After a few games I realized that I needed to increase my speed. Of course I went to KISA and asked him to help me. We began with sprints. Then, we were running during our lunch breaks. Next thing I knew, I began enjoying these runs. I was even running without my "running coach." I found these runs therapuetic. When the single mom struggles began to get to me, I would put my running shoes on and get lost in the run. I can use the escape of the run to get lost in my thoughts. I run when I'm happy. I run when I'm sad. I run when I'm angry. I even run and have conversations with God and those that I have lost.

I ran my first 5K a year later, at the same event I had cheered on KISA, and he was right there running beside me. It was another cold February morning and I spent the entire run smiling. Injuries followed. I was sidelined for half of that year, following my first 5K. I will just say it - I was a bear because I could not run. After taping, wraps, crutches, orthopedic shoes (which were NOT fashionable), and a walking boot - I was able to lace up my shoes again. The Heavens opened up and the angels were singing. I could reclaim my sanity.

Fast forward to this year. I have run a number of 5K's and finished my first 10K two months ago. I was even running them without KISA, but he was always along the course and finish line cheering me on. He even brought my baby boy to support me. My first half-marathon was slated for December. I took some time off of running in June to focus on some events very personal to me; however, I found that I was sinking into a "funk." I would not get out of bed. I began to put exercise on the back burner. I didn't smile as much. I confided (aka whined) to KISA about how unhappy I was. What words of wisdom did he impart? "Train for something." He knows how productive I feel when I am training and have an end goal in sight. So, we have moved up my half-marathon goal up from December to September.

I have not run since the end of May. I fear the pain that will ensue as much as I anticipate it. I know that there will be disappointments. Hard runs. Feelings of failure. I will move pass this. I know that I will be unable to hit the road as fast as when I last left it, but that will just fuel my fire on my next training run. I will not bore everyone out there with daily updates regarding my journey. Instead, I intend to post on a weekly basis.

It is getting late now and I need to start hydrating for tomorrow's run! By the way, KISA informed a coworker that I will be completing my first full marathon next year. Has anyone heard the weather report for hell?

Saturday, July 3, 2010


Last week I watched the latest Tom Cruise movie, Knight and Day. I am not a fan of Mr. Cruise, but a line from this movie really hit me. Before I get accused of "overanalyzing", let me set the scene...

Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise were chatting on a plane. Cameron's character was telling Tom's character of all the things that she would like to do... "someday." It was her, Bucket List, if you will. Tom responded by saying "Someday. That's a dangerous word. It's really just a code word for 'never'."

A week later, his words still ring in my head. Maybe I should say that Mr. Patrick O'Neill's, feature film writer, words still ring in my head. I don't know if it was because I was having a conversation with a friend earlier in the day about things I would like to do "someday" or if it was something else. Howe4ver, it truly made me thinking about the things that I want to do "someday". For example, someday I want to continue writing my blog. And here I am! Although this blog entry might be lacking, I am still doing it. Someday I want to run a half-marathon. I am starting my training on Sunday. Someday I want to lose 50lbs. I've already lost over 30.

So, quit saying "someday" and start setting goals.