Monday, August 31, 2009

Hey September...I'm Ready

You are not going to defeat me, September.
I'm leaning right into you.
Keeping my head down and pushing forward.
You don't stand a chance.

This month is not my favorite, especially this year. It's not going to be easy, but I'm not going to let it get me down. Staying busy and looking forward, as I still look back and reflect.
Are you ready, September??? You better be.

Tennis = Bad Drinking Game Idea

Travis is downstairs watching women's tennis and I'm laughing...all I hear is the silly "grunting" and "uh"-ing by the tennis players. Ha ha! I never played tennis, so I guess I don't understand. You know, watching tennis would be a really bad drinking game: "Every time the player grunts or makes a funny noise when hitting the ball...drink!" Drunkenness in no time flat.

Anywho, I'm not running tonight. Why, you ask? Well, I have little bitty scabs on my thighs! Owwiieee! I'm lifting instead. Hanz and Franzin it, so to speak.

I'm contemplating whether or not I can get up early enough for a little run tomorrow AM. Then perhaps I could just wear my capris and be a-ok. Perhaps... I do need to invest in some Body Glide soon. Thanks for the recommendations, peeps!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Horse Poo, Slugs & Spandex

That's it. I'm done with all this painful thigh chafing. I'm getting spandex shorts to run in. *groan*
My 6 miler was cut short because my thighs hurt so bad and they actually started to bleed a little. :( I think I ran a little over 4 miles, then walked the rest of the way back to the car. Awful.

The trail was super hot, as I was a dummy and went for a run during the hottest part of the day--1pm. Yes, I am an idiot. Since the trail also has a horse trail that parallels, I kept getting yucky wafts of horse poo...multiplied by the heat and humidity. Disgusting.

Plus, I stepped on a slug. It made my sole all slimy and slippery, and I couldn't get footing up a hill, almost face-planted in front of some cyclists. Nasty.

Awful. Disgusting. Nasty. --> Yup, that was today.

Oh well, tomorrow's another run.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Yesterday's 8

My goodness, did that 8 miles feel good! I think I would have kept going if it weren't raining and dark (and Travis had already called me with a "you're still running??"). I was even under a 9 minute mile pace! To me, this is awesome. Now it makes me think that a half marathon would not be as bad as I imagine it in my head. :)

Today's run = not so great. I felt like my entire upper body was hit with a Mack truck and the wind was knocked out of me. Perhaps the 8 miler was the culprit? Either way, I only went a little over 2 miles and actually walked some of it (which I hate to do). However, I made up for it with an intense lifting session with Travis and Jeff. Bench, deadlifts, powerlifts, punching bag. Oh boy, I feel like even typing is work right now!

Talked to my Uncle Doug about the Cape Cod trip Trav and I are taking at the end of next month. It would be cool to run a race with Doug while we're over there, but there's nothing scheduled. Bummah! He said he'd run with me at 5:30am, so we'll see how that goes! 2:30am Seattle time??? Say what?! It should be a fun trip.

G'night!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Friday Motivation

Lean running legs call for lean jeans...skinny jeans, yo! I purchased this black pair last Friday and they are my prize for being a running maniac for the past year. :) So, my motivation today stems from my jeans. These jeans make me feel good, as it's all about confidence!

Do you have a piece of motivational clothing? Even though that sounds weird, I'm curious to hear about it.


If you like the jeans, they are from Nordies--check 'em out!

Why I Run: Reason #29*

I run because I want to live a long life..
Almost two years ago, I married Travis. And because I love him and cannot think of my life without him, I want to live a long and healthy life. Kids! Grandkids! Great-Grandkids! I want to experience as much as I can with him, more than just kids. There's so many countries and places that we want to visit, people to meet, foods to savor, weather to enjoy...the list goes on. And this is why I run: I love Travis.

*These reasons are in no particular order.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Seattle Half Marathon...yes?

Should I? $75? November? I want to. And I would love to sign up now...but I don't get paid until next week and the mortgage is due.

GAH.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Not Good

Yesterday was busy, I couldn't run. I feel terrible! Then today I felt really awful because of something I ate last night...only went to work half the day (I had a job interview)...still felt crappy. So no run. Tomorrow is going to be just as busy as I have a dinner to go to for work. *phew* I need to run!
I think I'm going to try and run tomorrow morning...if not, then I'm going to go crazy. Again, this is why I need a treadmill so bad. :P

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hans & Franz

Lifting with Trav last night was fun, and he's now my official "Weight Training Coach." Jeff couldn't make it to lift with him, so I was his spotter, and he gave me sets to do. I did bench, tricep work, deadlifts and powerlifts (aka Clean & Jerk). I'm sore! But in a "hells ya" kind of way. ;) Whenever I lift, I always think of the Saturday Night Live skit with Dana Carvey & that Kevin guy who play wannabe Ahhhhnolds:
"We're going to pump...[chest pound]...you up."

Anyway, my deadlift max. is 160 lbs...and I really want to increase that number. So, I will be working on that! Travis is a great motivator because he's really strong and getting stronger every day...and I need to keep up with him! It's funny though--his arms are getting HUGE and it also makes them look shorter (like a T-Rex!). I, on the other hand, have gangly arms, and they are longer than Trav's...so together we look like a couple of weirdos. Long gangle arms and bicep muscle dude. At least he's not getting meat headed...but he is outgrowing all the shirts I got him for Christmas. *sigh*

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Next Race!

Just signed up to participate in the Aflac Iron Girl 5K with Liz on September 12th! Liz's first race! I'm so excited! (I bet you couldn't tell that, huh?) It's a quick, very flat course around Greenlake...my old stomping grounds...so it should be a breeze!

I took it a little easy today, as there was a lot of cleaning/chores to get done around the house and my ankle is sore from yesterday's hill workout. Instead of running I'm going to lift with Trav in a half hour, so I would have done something to train. :) It counts.

Busy Saturday & Not-So-Lazy Sunday

Yesterday was BUSY. Run with Liz, hang out with Jaquelene, Laura G's wedding, hang out with my brother/sister/dad/nephew for a bit, then it was off to the Seahawk's game. Exhausted.

Liz and I ran a little over 6 miles yesterday morning, but we were both a little sore/hurting, so our pace was a little slower. But hey, we ran. Liz was acting like a dancing fool while we were stopped at crosswalks...I jump, she dances. Very entertaining, but we only got three honks this time...we were off our game!
Here, Liz demonstrates a knee stretch (but I thought it just looked funny):
We did some fartleks again, and Liz started them out by yelling "FARTLEK, GO!" I think I laughed more this way and worked the abs. By the end of the giant hill back to Liz's house we were fartleked (aka our way of saying "wiped out").

I just did some calculations and I figured out I've run 667.6 miles since last September. To me, this is awesome. My first "Runnerversary" is coming up and I'm happier now with my progress than ever. I feel great! :) This is totally why I run.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Hurray for Skirts!

I got my skirt from RunningSkirts.com in the mail today and I was so excited that I HAD to take it on a test run right away! I'm in love! It seriously feels like nothing (which sounds weird, but it's not). The waist band is so comfortable you forget that it's there, unlike elastic-waist shorts that can dig into your sides. The skirt did not ride up or flip up while I was running, and I was
amazed! Travis was a little upset with me over the price, but I'm going to make good use of it, for sure. :) When I can, I'm totally going to buy another skirt, maybe two, later on...I think I want to try out their Athletic Skirt with the built-in compression shorts next.







Tomorrow's going to be a busy day, so I'm planning on running with Liz in the early AM. Another 6 miles? Bring it!







Greeeaaaaat

Well, there goes my chances of running around the neighborhood at dark...

Trav and I just awoke (@ 5 am) to someone in our cul-de-sac grunting, howling, and walking erratically down the sidewalk. He then proceeded to walk behind our neighbor's house straight into the woods. After a few minutes he emerged from the same spot, still grunting and stomping, took of his shoes and walked up the hill.

Uh....
Yeah.
That's a first.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Jell-o Legs

I'm feeling them. Oh boy. Just finished my hill workout and my legs are a jiggly, wobbly mess. I ran up and down the hill right by my house, sprinting uphill between two lampposts. Speaking of lampposts, there is a significant lack of street lighting in my cul-de-sac...which makes me a little weary, but also run faster in the dark areas.

I swear that at least 10 houses were cooking with garlic. It reeked. Is there a full moon I don't know about? A vampire alert I'm unaware of? Well, I think just the smell of that garlic would keep any vampire away. So, the entire run smelled like garlic, but my legs felt like jell-o. There's a food theme here...garlic jell-o. ew.

Then, to add to my leg agony, I did some deadlifts. Apparently, I like torturing myself. ;)

Hey Running Guys & Gals!

I have a question about race registration fees. Is it just me or are they getting more expensive? How in the world do people race constantly and pay these fees? How do you pay for these fees? Any advice?

My Uncle Doug informed me that when he used to race, the fees were a buck. A BUCK?! Dude, sign me up for the dollar race! On that note, maybe I should start an annual race for $1....hmmm (the little hamster is spinning that wheel in my head). Well, my cool Uncle Doug also sponsored me for my last race, the Covey Run 5K. *Thanks, Doug! You're a rockstar!*

There are just so many races I want to enter, but money is not plentiful at the moment, so I must choose wisely.

Here are the races that I want to do next month:

So what is a runner to do?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Hills (the terrain, not the tv show)

Gah! I was not feeling it today. :(
I only went 3.25 miles and decided to do a little weight training at home while watching The Office Season 3 on DVD. It's really warm and muggy out right now, and I was sweating buckets. I drank nearly an entire 1 liter bottle of sparkling water when I got back...I had to replenish all that water draining from my pores. Seriously, sweat got into my eyes and stung like a sonovahgun. I did three major hills today and I think they were victorious over little ol me, but I didn't walk. I couldn't walk. My body wanted to, but my mind said "hell no." It was a battle in my brain today.
Apparently my brain can only write in fragmented sentences tonight.
Lately when I'm running I'm thinking of what to write in this blog. It's kind of funny, really. I'm writing in my mind (or just losing my mind?). I'm mind wrunning. Oooo, now doesn't that sound cool.

Racevine.com

Hey fellow runners! There's a fairly new website that lists races all over the country and has runners review them for all to see...
Check out Racevine and review a past race or submit a race that you don't see listed. You can also add upcoming races to your profile to review once they're complete. How cool is that?

There's also a Summer Giveaway going on now, too. Everyone loves a giveaway!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Runner Profile: Meet Liz

Liz is not only my husband's brother's wife (I guess, "sister-in-law" is easier to say), but one of my best friends. She's a mom, a founder of a non-profit, artist, singer, writer, seamstress, graphic designer, web designer...the list goes on. And now, she's adding "runner" to her repertoire. Geez, she's a super woman.

1. What is your favorite stretch?
The "butterfly" - inner thigh stretch.

2. Do you have any pre-race rituals?
Have yet to do a race but I have a feeling I will become a race junkie.

3. What motivates you to run?
In all honesty? You (Zoë) do! I do it to get in shape, I do it for my health and my kids but I also do it in hopes that Zoë and I can run together someday.

4. When did you start running?
Not too long ago. A little over two months.

5. Running shoe of choice?
Whatever is fitted on my feet, suits my orthotics and aren't too heavy. I'm sure I'll have a favorite eventually.

6. Best advice received?
My dad taught me that when I'm getting tired or running on an incline, do not slow your pace, just shorten your steps. It has helped me increase my distance so much.

7. What do you think about when running?
I prefer to think about nothing. I notice smells and love to get lost in my music.

8. What is something you cannot run without?
I do love my music, but I have run without it just fine, I could not run without the motivation. I totally psych myself up for runs, especially if it's going to be a long run.

9. What race distance is your favorite?
I'm a big fan of a 5K right now. It feels pretty comfortable to me. I'd love to hit a solid 10K though.

10. Most outrageous running story you've heard or experienced?
I haven't been running long enough to hear or experience any crazy ones yet - I did run by a truck with a taxidermid german shepherd in the back the other day though. It was super creepy.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Day-o-Rest

My right calf is sore and I felt like I should take a day off from running. It's well deserved, I think. ;) Instead, I enjoyed a glass of red wine and two episodes of The Office with Trav and Murphy. So, to satisfy today's randomness, here's a pic of Murphy in his favorite* tank top:
He's a good kitty. =^_^=

*Yeah, right.

Why I Run: Reason #13*

I run because diabetes SUCKS...

Diabetes is in my family and there's no way around it. All generations on both sides, so technically, I'm screwed. But, I'm not letting it stop me: I'm staying healthy for as long as I can. Complications from this awful disease took the lives of two of the most important people in my life: my Grammy and Grandpa. I miss them so much and wish I could have done something to save them, but I couldn't. Diabetes flat out sucks!

I run the Nordstrom Annual Beat the Bridge to Beat Diabetes race every May, supporting JDRF. Join me in 2010 and beat the bridge!

*These reasons are in no particular order.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The "Bombs"

Yeah, that's it. Bombs. You know? Dog poo.
My little rant is about the dog owners that 1) let their dog poo on the sidewalk and 2) don't clean it up. WTH?! I nearly stomped on one of these lovely sidewalk mines on my run tonight. YUCK! I think I may have sprained something avoiding the darn thing. It just grosses me out.

Other than the poo, my run was pretty good, but I'm wicked tired. Three Salonpas patches are taking up space on my right calf at the moment, but it's not that bad. In fact, it smells minty...

What a weekend! Woo!

Motivation

This totally made my day:
:) Thanks, Liz!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Covey Run 5K = COMPLETE...and then some

*Side Note: Reason I'm not "smiling" is that I was bummed I didn't beat Curley, but I didn't know that I had made my top 10 goal!

The race yesterday was pretty fun! It was a very flat course that just turned around at the halfway mark. As I was nearing the turnaround, I saw the top runners and was amazed...the females were SO YOUNG! Turns out they were 14, 14 and 13 years old...and the 4th female was 50. Ohmygosh, AWESOME-NESS! Towards the end I was catching up to this kid who looked to be 10, and I passed him, then he came back to me, and I ran faster, then he ran faster, then I was like "I have to stay ahead of this kid!" and starting lengthening my stride. (Sorry, kid, you did am amazing job!). Then, when I was nearing the finish, this dude in a red shirt that I had passed was trying to pass me, and we BATTLED to the finish line! My little sister Liza caught it on film:
I think I beat him, but BARELY. Heh heh! He was soooo not having the "beat by a girl" happen, but I brought it. Word. *chest bump*

The sad news: I didn't beat John Curley. I think his time (with the delay) was 24:45 or something? So, I almost had it. Almost. It was interesting
because I thought that with the 2 minute 30 second delay, he waited at the start line and then ran...so I was waiting for him to PASS me. Apparently, he starts with the pack and then is stopped right before the finish line. This race, Curley was beat up by the Covey Run Quails...
You know, I think it would be a much more interesting race if Curley was delayed at the START, and he had to pass people. Because if I saw him pass me I'd be like "nu-uh, Curley...you're going down!" Now, I have a plan. I'm deadset on beating Curley in a race. I'm going to be a "Curley Chaser" until I beat him. Are you ready for this, dude? :)

Final Stats:
Mileage - 3.2 (a little longer than a standard 5K)
Time - 25:08
Overall - 64 out of 470
Division Place - 8 out of 89 (F20-29)*
Sex Place - 16 out of 269
Pace - 8:06
(7:50 pace, according to my mileage/Trailguru)
*BUT, place 6 & 7 had the same time as me...tie!

I seriously went home and napped for 2 hours...but then I still had the running itch (weird, huh?)...so I went for a 7.21 mile run with LIZ!! This was my first time running with her and she AMAZES me so much. A self-labeled "non-runner," Liz is pretty damn good, if I say so myself. She is most definitely a runner. :)

The last part of the run was uphill, so we walked and did some fartleks (hee hee, the word still makes me laugh!). All in all, a total of 6 whistle/honks, too. :P
Here's the aftermath:FIERCE!!

We're in talks to run in the Seattle Half Marathon in November...and I think we should totally do it. :)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Uncharted Waters, Matey!

Tonight's run was a big one (7 miles!). I thought I was going to die. And not just because of the distance. Here's why:
  1. New route, completely unknown to little 'ol me
  2. Two-way road had no sidewalks 90% of the time, and I pretty much had mini panic attacks when I saw headlights coming towards me
  3. There was this ginormous hill that probably rose a good 200 feet or so, and I nearly keeled over towards the top
  4. I think I may have seen a drug deal go down
  5. Said hill in #3 was not any nicer on the way back, I guess it was more of a valley than just one hill
  6. It was getting dark really quickly and there was this barn house that reminded me of a bad horror movie...and since I haven't perfected my scream, I didn't feel up to starring in a movie of that sort...so I ran faster
  7. Increased speed due to scary barn house = increased fatigue = increased "Phoebe" running style
I did learn something new, though. Apparently my house is only 1 mile away from the next town, Auburn. Weird. Didn't realize I was that far south in Kent. OH! And just because your wearing an electric blue top does not mean that cars can see you. I'm thinking I should carry a giant HID flashlight and an air horn. That's right. Don't mess. *HONK!*

Since it had just rained, the air was crisp and it was a nice run overall.
But...I'm never running that way again. ;)
August Sunset in Washington

Why I Run: Reason #27*

I run because I like to compete...

Sure, I'm always nervous before a race, but who isn't? It's just the best feeling when you are nearing the finish line and passing people like crazy! :) Maybe I've saved up too much energy for the sprint finish, but who cares...it's for the love of increasing the ranks! Ha ha! The satisfaction of completing a race is the best experience.

*These reasons are in no particular order.

A Note from Coach Fish

My Uncle Doug sponsored me for the race on Saturday, and sent me a note as well: I would love to make that come true. One day! Maybe Saturday... :)
Thanks, Uncle Doug!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Running in a Swampy Sock?

That's what it felt like on my 5 miler tonight. Just a whole lot of "yuck." Just muggy central, but with a chilling little breeze. Ick.

Jack made an appearance tonight, along with his wife Jill and his brother Jimmie. ;) I had three little bunnies "cheering me on." There were also quite a few evening stroll-ers out tonight. One couple in particular was extra cold and actually walked farther apart on the sidewalk as I was running towards them...so I was "pushed" onto the road. Meanies. But I still smiled and gave a little wave as usual. Kill 'em with kindness, right?

That's all tonight, folks. I'm making cupcakes for my coworker's birthday festivities tomorrow and I still need to frost them! And it's midnight already! AACK!

'night

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Runner Profile: Meet Duane

Duane is my sister-in-law's Dad (Liz's daddy!), who acts and says things just like my own father...which is pretty interesting. He's a very laid back guy that enjoys gardening, being outside and roasting pigs in his backyard for dozens of people (he's really good at it!). He's a true entertainer. :)

1. What is your favorite stretch?
I don't usually stretch....I start my run VERY slowly and once warmed-up I can increase my speed.

2. Do you have any pre-race rituals?
Eating something very light and making sure I don't have to use a porta-potty during my run or race!

3. What motivates you to run?
The rhythm of it all.....I love the rhythm....the sound of my feet and breathing is really soothing.

4. When did you start running?
The 1st time I ran was in Marine Corps boot camp.... I was 22. We always ran at the same pace...approx 180 steps-per-minute...I guess I just go used the the pace. I again started running in grad school...U. of Hawaii. I ran on the U of H track lots....I ran 5 miles on the track for my 32 birthday. Hawaii is where my running obsession really began. I would do research in my lab in the early A.M. followed by some class work....then a 10 mile run around Diamond Head and up Manoa Valley and back to the lab where I had a VERY COLD beer waiting...then down to the beach for some SUN. It was a GREAT time of my life.

5. Running shoe of choice?
Brooks...great heel counter for the over-pronator.

6. Best advice received?
My Company Commander in the corps was also a long distance runner....he advised me "to always keep the same pace...to go faster just increase the stride...up hills...just decrease the stride...but always keep the same pace and rhythm "

7. What do you think about when running?
I don't think I think...it's about the only time I truly have 'peace-of-mind'
8. What is something you cannot run without?
I cannot think of anything...however, I CANNOT run with a watch or ring...perhaps it's a 'balance' thing?

9. What race distance is your favorite?
10K

10. Most outrageous running story you've heard or experienced?
The MOST outrageous running story I have experienced.....My buddy and I had a GREAT running route around one of our many hills in Seattle. As I stated above...I never want..or need to use 'the facilities' during a race or run...so I ALWAYS take care of things before the run...my buddy did NOT! We were running in the very early morning hours...he had to go BAD....nothing was open...the was NO place to hide...it was a DIRE situation...until he spotted an unlocked VW on a side street. You must understand...this was an EMERGENCY....the VW back seat was a 'Facility of LAST Resort'!!!

I say: That's quite the story, Duane! ICK! LOL!

Why I Run: Reason #1*

I run for charity...

To raise awareness and much needed funding for nonprofits and organizations. I'm a sucker for a cause that helps kids or families, or people that have lost loved ones. Even if I can't give that much, anything that I have is worth it, because every little bit counts when it comes to nonprofits. And I would know--I volunteer for one (A Small Victory). :)

*These reasons are in no particular order.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Meet My "Dog" Murphy

video
Alas, I couldn't resist using Photo Booth again!  
(That's what happens when I don't use the Mac side of my computer very often).

I'm Melting!

It's actually raining outside!  Ohmygosh!  But, of course, that means "little-'ol-me" doesn't feel like getting drenched on my run (*hint hint* TRAV--treadmill!).  So, I turned to a little OnDemand exercise tv...oh boy, let me tell you...it was hilarious!  I think I worked my abs more laughing than doing the exercises.  First, I tried this "Baywatch" workout for a bikini body, which was pretty funny stuff.  Running in place to the blonde chick with ginormously huge boobs did nothing but make me laugh.  It was a total guy's exercise program (sorry dudes).  Oh well.  Then I went to the "Hardcore" section, which did nothing for the name at all.  The dude leading the video was cute, but we were doing grapevines and toe taps and the like...and it didn't make me feel very hardcore.  So what did I end up doing?  Stairs.  Running up and down my stairs, dodging Murphy kitty.  Then, I played with Photo Booth. ;)  Ahhh, great workout!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Perils of Being a Girl Runner

Damsel in Distress?

Friday night I wanted to run Soos Creek, but Travis and Jeff had to drive me there. Travis took one look at the surroundings and said “this is the last time you’ll be running here by yourself.” Crap. Sure, I’m not exactly totally cool with the idea of running a trail by myself, but I think I can manage. Especially since I’m not going when it’s dark, and there are always people along the way. I’m not completely a damsel in distress here. But I do see where he’s coming from, and it makes me bummed. Perhaps I need to find a local running partner or group?

I channeled my frustration with what Trav said and used it to run faster. My 5 miles ended up being at an 8:30 mile pace. Woot! I also think that my blue Under Armor compression shirt had something to do with it. Man, that thing makes me feel like Super Girl, minus the cape. ;) On the way home I wasn’t satisfied with my run so I had them drop me off a couple blocks from our house so I could run some more. Yeah, I was feeling a little crazy, I suppose. That run added about 1.75 miles to my day’s mileage. It was a good evening.

Yesterday I took the day off. I think this week’s stress from work and the high mileage just exhausted me. I took a 2 hour nap at 6:30! Weird. Then today’s run was very disappointing. It was only a little less than 3 miles, and I had to walk a bunch. Have I hit a plateau? Argh! It’s so frustrating. So, I lifted some weights, did some extra stretching and punched the good ‘ol punching bag. Oh well. Tomorrow’s another day, and the race is in a week.

Ooo, another reason why I need a treadmill…just in case I feel the urge to run at 10pm (like right now).

Friday, August 7, 2009

Next Race...

Saturday 8/15 @ 8am

I just had to sign up for this race because it's an excellent cause...and the featured patient's name is Zoe. *wink*
Also, I challenged John Curley (known by Pacific Northwesterners of Evening Magazine fame) for charity. It's a very fun concept and a great way to raise money for awesome causes. I actually found this race through Mr. Curley's "Upcoming Events" and pretty much wanted to see if I could run faster than him! Heh heh!
Are you ready, Curley???
I am!!

I Wear My Sunglasses At Night

...so I can, so I can..
...avoid bugs.
It's true. I wear them running at all times, regardless if the sun is starting to set and people look at me weird when I pass by. ;) It seems that whenever I try not to wear my sunglasses I always run into a bug.
or a bug runs into me? flies into my eye? Oh, you get it.

It's painful when they get stuck in there. And it's worse when they get all tangled with my contact lens. Icky! Ick ick ick.
Ya know what I'm sayin'?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Runner Profile: Meet Alison

Alison is a pretty rad chick. She's super smart, has a cool job, AND she's hardcore when it comes to fitness. (Can you say 5am Boot Camp??). We've run together downtown a couple times, and man, she can conquer the hills like a champ. ;)

1. What is your favorite stretch?
Pigeon or down dog

2. Do you have any pre-race rituals?
Nope

3. What motivates you to run?
Running feeds my competitive nature – and I love the runners high

4. How long have you been running?
14 years or so

5. Running shoe of choice?
Mizuno’s

6. Best advice received?
There is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs.

7. What do you think about when running?
Nothing specific, but I try to stay in the moment and not think too much at all

8. What is something you cannot run without?
Aside from the basic running-ware? Nothing…I’m not very superstitious

9. What race distance is your favorite?
Don’t have a current favorite

10. Most outrageous running story you've heard or experienced?
My mom ran with a torn meniscus for about 4 months until it was correctly diagnosed. She had surgery and is still running (probably better than ever). Maybe not outrageous…but possibly crazy. It must run in the family. :)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Take THAT, Hell Hill...

**Blogger was down! Panic!**

Tonight's 6 miler turned into a 7 miler (ok, ok, so the mileage is a little off...it's 6.85 miles to be precise). The trail was not as busy, despite the cooler temperature just PERFECT for a run. :) It was weird that some parts of the trail were covered in leaves and I thought to myself "COME ON, it's only the beginning of August, Soos Creek!"...there is plenty of time to turn into Fall when September hits. But it was a beautiful run, nonetheless.

One thing was different though: I ran sans music! EEK! This was prompted by my coworker/friend/fellow runner, Alison, who says that I may be too dependent on it. So I said, ok--what the heck. Might as well try running without constant tunes. I mean, how hard could it be? High school XC didn't come with a soundtrack (although it felt like it should've at times). The result: the nature sounds were very awesome and it reminded me of running in Cape Cod (sigh), so it wasn't that bad. BUT (and this is a big but), there was one sound that I wanted to "mute" so badly, but couldn't...my breathing. GAH. I seriously cannot STAND the sound of my breathing. It's awful! That's all I could concentrate on, despite trying to think of my surroundings. I tried to slow down my breathing, or try a different "rhythm" but that didn't work out. Apparently passing out in the middle of a bike trail is not the greatest of ideas. Oh well. So, I toughed it out and started a decent groove of strides and breaths. Eh, I tried. I think I'll stick to my playlist, but I'll try running without it every so often.

*Side note:* What I love about being around other runners is that, in passing, they wave or say hi. It's like the "brotherhood" between motorcyclists when they wave/nod at each other. It's fun!


One thing that I didn't like about tonight's run...the perfume.
[begin rant]
There were these two couples (not together, but a mile or so apart) where the woman was wearing the sweetest smelling flowery perfume that just made me want to gag! I mean, SERIOUSLY. It lingered! I could smell it for a quarter mile. Yuck. And this happened twice! This is the reason I skip my normal fragrance spritz the day of a race, as a common courtesy for the other runners. ;) No one likes to smell a perfume so much they can taste it.
[end rant]

Here's a pic of what I like to call the "Hell Hill" that's at the end of my run (last half mile or so). GAH, it's tough, but I've kept my stride up that hill and haven't walked it once. Woot!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Runners

I've never been "great" at running, like my friends in high school or college. To me, I've just been "good." And sometimes, it makes me feel like less of a runner. I'm not sure why, but I feel that if I'm not fast, then that means I'm not good enough. That sucks. This isn't what I'm always focused on, but sometimes it just slips in my mind and I can't let it go. It's frustrating!

My definition of a runner is someone who runs on a regular basis. Period.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Now that felt GREAT!

Even though I'm still sunburned/sore/bug-bitten/bruised, I went for a run on the Soos Creek Trail. My goal was to run 3 miles and then turn around for a total of 6. Man, it felt FANTASTIC! I think my pace was right on par and the hills I encountered were tough, but I didn't falter. No sirree. :) There were quite a few people on the trail running, walking their dogs and riding bikes, so I felt safe for the most part. Luckily, there was a lot of tree coverage, so the sun wasn't scalding me at all (which, of course, is great after getting an uber sunburn). No weirdos jumped out at me from the bushes, and there weren't any scary wildlife sightings...well, except perhaps this one overly tan woman with crazy frizz hair walking her giant bulldog. She was a little scary. ;)

My new shoes are finally feeling more comfortable, too! All in all, it was a WIN kind of run.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

I have an a$$ on my bruise...



Heh heh. Well, more of the other way around! And I don't bruise easily at all. :P
Mt. Rainier was AMAZING, and this time around it was definitely up there on the difficulty scale, despite this being year 3. The snow wasn't at the start of the hike like last year (it was right next to the Paradise Visitor Center), but waaaay up by Pebble Creek. I think that the lack of snow made the temperature feel even worse. Blech! Also, the biting bugs were out in full force and Trav and I have some battle wounds to prove it. Sneaky little buggers. We got up to Muir at around 3pm, which was right on par with our goal. It's strange to have the temperature change so much in a short time span! Sliding down the snow field caused my lovely butt bruise (see my awesome garbage bag shorts? yeah, they are new from the MC Hammer line).

Travis and I an hour into the hike


Looking down the snowfield from a pit-stop.


Trav and I at Camp Muir (2nd time!)


The view from Muir (see the little speck people?)


Coming back down the mountain. :)

We ended up coming back to the car around 6pm. On our way down the road to the car, though, Matt and I ran into two men in their 50's drinking some beers in the back of their pickup truck. We said "Oh man, that looks NICE!" and they gave us both a beer (good beer too!). They said they were from Maine and that they had just hiked to Muir too. We chatted with them for a little bit and finished our cold beers (oh my, I'm not a big beer drinker...but that HIT the spot, I say!). It was a cool little ending to our day.

Then it was off to the Railroad Car Restaurant in Elbe for some greasy burgers/chicken and homemade fries...it was fun! Unfortunately on our way back through Orting the power was out for some reason...but the road ended up being closed (I think some idiot ran into a telephone pole), so that detour cost some time. AND, then Jeff and I were pulled over in Jeff's black (ninja) loud Mustang...and was written a ridiculous ticket for something he totally didn't do. :( It was a major bummer and Jeff was wicked upset the rest of the way back to our meeting point.

All in all, Trav and I got home at around 10:30pm and pretty much crashed into bed. SO tired, but it is SO worth it. ;)

See more pictures on my Flickr page

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