Sweet Sixteen

August 30, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Training Calls For: Rest 🙂

Miles Run So Far: 233.2

Days Left: 49

What a fantastic, busy, lovely weekend!  I’m sorry I disappeared.  We traveled out of town and hung out with friends and family and all those going-ons left very little time to pop into the world wide web.  Let me catch you up and you’ll see what I mean ;).

Friday, I got out of work early and once Sam came home, we hit the road.  This weekend, Sam was taking his friend Joe to a baseball game (it’s always what he gives Joe for his birthday) and I was meeting up with Joe’s wife, Kathy and some other girlfriends for a little shopping and dinner.  Our paths crossed with Joe’s at Chipotle (it was fate, I tell you!) and we stopped for dinner.

I tried the Chipotle tacos for the first time.  Not bad!  I intended to leave one for later, but Chipotle is laced with some kind of addicting ingredient, so before I knew it, they were gone!

My dinner companions were pretty entertaining.

The testosterone levels were spiking.

Saturday morning meant there were miles to run before our fun afternoons/evenings could get underway.  I was little nervous to run all 16 of those miles in W-ton (Sam’s parents hometown), because my past runs in W-ton (both ten milers!) were less than stellar.  I prepped my traditional breakfast of PB toast with a lil’ coffee and gave myself a pep talk.

Don’t think of this as 16 miles.  Think of this as a four mile run.  You’re going out on a four mile run.  Four times.  That’s all.  Take it one run at a time.  Have one good four mile run, then have another.  Leave the negativity or frustration with that four mile run.  Don’t bring it to the next one or it’s going to turn into one huge 16 mile run.

Joe was our agua angel, meeting us along the route Sam mapped out.  He brought Gatorade and Gu and best of all, he brought encouragement.  He was the best cheerleader, rushing out of the car and clapping us on until we met up to him.  I wonder if I can convince him to do this for the rest of our long runs? 😉

Between the cooler weather, the personal pep talk and the spectatular spectator, I was elated when we were done.  Sixteen fingers for sixteen miles:

(I don’t really know why Sam is half naked, but I give you permission to oogle his abs ;).)

I was proud of myself and proud of my run.  We weren’t obsessive about time and pace (we took our time chatting with Joe when he met up with us) and we walked after each 4 mile segment (or there abouts), so when Sam told me we finished in a little more than 3 hours, I was happy.  What a sweet sixteen!

There may have been an un-pictured  milkshake afterwards. 😉  I ran past an empty milkshake cup on the side of the road about 10 miles in and it was all I could think about until we finished.  Protein, right?

After some lunch (baked ziti), a nap (ahhh, so good) and a little key switcheroo snafu (two spouses should never share one car key), I was off to meet up with five other lovely ladies.

Before I could get my shop on, I had to get my caffeine on.

And my snack on.  Annie’s Organic Snack Mix bunnies at Starbucks?  It’s like they knew I would have the 16-mile munchies.

We shopped until I almost dropped (my legs were giving me some serious backtalk) and then hit the Cheesecake Factory.

I love the Cheesecake Factory and always have a hard time deciding what to order.  This time around, I chose the Bang Bang Chicken and Shrimp:  a mix of curry and coconut with a spicy peanut sauce served with rice.  It was delicious.

Unfortunately, it was late.  Like mega late.  Like everyone else had their meals for 15 minutes late.  I told them to go ahead and eat (who wants to be responsible for all that cold food?!) and just had to sit and twiddle my thumbs.  The server apologized and the manager came to “check on me”,  but I was still pretty upset they didn’t offer me a discount or comp my meal.  Actions speak louder than words, Cheesecake Factory.

Probably won’t be going back to the Cheesecake Factory again.  Too bad.  I ❤ cheesecake (but I hate bad service).

The company was lovely, though. 🙂

Sunday morning I accompanied my mother-in-law and father-in-law to church and then we took a little detour so I could see their gardening plot at the local college.

The Grow Food, Grow Hope program is an incredible sight to see up close.  The program matches community members with local experts and mentors to help folks with square foot gardening.  All this produce is pesticide free and grown with lots of love.

The farmers survey their land.

And taste test some soybeans right off the vine.  Edamame, anyone?

A little harvest helper?

For a small patch of land, it sure did produce a lot of goodies!

We came home with a bunch of red tomatoes, orange tomatoes (low-acid, according to my mother-in-law), petite green peppers and soybeans!  Yum.

Seeing (and tasting) these beautiful veggies reminded me that it never fails that when we travel, I forget all about fruits and vegetables and go straight for the carbs, treats and wine.  This trip was no different, so I was pretty stoked to give Green Monster Smoothie a big wet kiss when I got home.

Mmm.  Spinach.  It is purely coincidental my shirt matches my smoothie.  Or is it?  GMM on the brain?

So that catches you up and all the weekend’s events.  I think a little shoe shopping is in order for me tonight.  I love shoe shopping, but lately, my focus has taken me away from the killer stilettos and crazy tall boots…

I guess you could say my perspective has changed a little. 🙂

Something to do: If you have ever, are or are going to train for a marathon, be sure and submit a comment to Linzi’s “running” list of “you know you’re training for a marathon if…”  It’s getting pretty funny over there!

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Nothin’ To Do

August 27, 2010 at 7:34 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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I woke up this morning with nothin’ to do.  No homework, no exams, no run.  No nothin’.  Nothin’ to do except talk to you. 🙂  So let’s get down to biznazz.

Training Calls For: Rest

Miles Run So Far: 217.2

Days Left: 52*

See that little asterisk?  *sigh* I may have just dominated a statistics course, but I still apparently can’t count.  I was listing something like 70 days left until the marathon, until I realized over at Destination 26.2, Linzi (who’s running her 1st marathon on the same day) was waaaaaaay ahead of me in the numbers.  How could this be?!  I did a quick count of the days left on my Hal Higdon novice marathon training schedule.  Counted and re-counted.  *Gulp*  Um, I was only off by about 18 days.

Whatev.  I’m still on track with the schedule and I’m running the correct mileage to get me to M-day, I just had the actual number wrong.  So here’s a new equation for you:

(Bethany + Math)/Busybusy life = Blogging error (Disaster!)

But let’s don’t rub it in.

I am finished with my summer classes and feel so free.  For new readers: I’m a returner learner.  I already have a college degree in one field and I’m working towards another in Spanish.  When you hear me talking about class and finals, keep in mind, I’m still a regular ol’ adult with a house, a full-time job and two monsters. 🙂

Finishing up with classes warranted a Dairy Queen reward:

I look a little crazy in this picture — crazy relieved!  By the by, that Blizzard is not healthy, probably not natural, but tasted so good knowing I don’t have to take statistics ever again.

I know I’m really in training because after I ate it, I thought to myself, “I hope I don’t regret this during my mid-week run of 8 miles.”  When you reach a level where you’re churning out mile after mile, you have also reached the level where you can feel how your food and drink choices affect your body and your running.  Eat crap, drink crap, feel like crap.

Fortunately, I had prefaced DQ with a healthy dinner:

Marinated boneless pork ribs, salad with avocado and tomato and cantaloupe.  Foods my body appreciates.

Our 8 mile run yesterday was fantastic.  I slept like a rock the night before (goodbye, stress) and was up at 5:15 ready to tackle the route.  I filled Alice the CamelBak with a combination of Gatorade and water and we set out.

My mind wanders when I run:

🙂 I should really blog about carnival food since I had to run through the empty alley of shuttered carny trucks hocking corndogs and funnel cakes during the Parade of the Hills 5K.

🙂 Oh, look, a person going through the McDonald’s drive thru.  *wave* “Good morning!” Sam to me: “Careful, people might think you’re a morning person.”

🙂 If we knocked the rear wall of our house off and blew the roof off, could we build a two-story house without sacrificing much of our enormous backyard?

🙂 What am I going to eat for breakfast?  That English muffin with PB has totally been torched by now.

The answer to question #4:

I found this little mostly-empty Almond Butter jar hiding on the counter and put him to use.  Oats in a jar! You can run, Almond Butter jar, but you can’t hide.

I was craving a sweet breakfast (I blame the Blizzard), so I threw a few dark chocolate chips in my oatmeal.  Sooooo good.

To balance out my fruit and veg free breakfast, I packed a super healthy lunch…looooooook into my wrap.  You are getting sleepy, very sleepy.

Multigrain wrap with hummus, red pepper, green pepper and carrots.

I added my favorite summer salad on the side:

Spinach + strawberries + feta.  If you haven’t tried it, your hesitation is foolish. 😉  It’s delicious.

There was also cantaloupe, an apple and a banana.  None of them were pretty enough to photograph.

Neither, incidentally, was dinner.  I walked through our door last night to find Sam and my brother-in-law, Steve, trying to squeeze a pull-out couch down our basement stairs.  I slowly backed away from the man-work jungle and chose a bowl of cereal with blueberries as dinner.

I’m off to enjoy the rest of my “nothin’ to do” day and mentally prepare for the 16 miles we’re running tomorrow.  Before I go, two “administrative” things:

First…

After I returned from my vacation-induced hiatus earlier this month, a friend solemnly confessed to me, “I know you were on vacation and you weren’t updating your blog, but I was checking almost every day — just in case.  Then, I started reading some other blogs.”  *gasp!*  You cheated on me with other blogs? 😉  Haha, it’s okay.  Turns out my friend found click-worthiness in Carrots’n’Cake and Kath Eats Real Food…two blogs I also love.  For you, friend (and for everyone really), I updated my blogroll.  So, with my blessing, click away…just come back here every once in a while, too. 😉

Second…

Have you heard about Healthy Living Blogs?  Here’s a little info:

Healthy Living Blogs is a new resource for the health blogging community. Created by Lindsey of Sound Eats, HLB is a site designed to enhance the positive community of the healthy living blog world. Bloggers and readers can explore the site and find more blogs to love, bloggers in their area, and forums to deepen healthy discussion and support. If you’re interested in having your site listed on HLB, simply send the following information to healthylivingblogs@gmail.com and check the site out for yourself!

  • Email subject line: MEMBERS

  • Your name (please share if you prefer to go by first name, first and last, or however you prefer to be known on the Internet)

  • Blog Name

  • Blog URL (please start with http://, not www.)

  • Your twitter handle, if applicable

  • Your location (if you prefer not to disclose this information for privacy’s sake, that is completely understandable. We’ll simply include your blog listing in the A-Z listing, not by location, too)

  • Any specific labels (i.e. vegan, gluten-free, weight loss, running, etc.)

I know a few of you have actually wandered over from HLB and I think it’s a great resource for the blogging community!  Be sure and check it out.

Have a wonderful Friday.  I’ll see you tomorrow — probably 16 miles tired-er.

What are you doing today?

Peaceful, Easy Feeling

May 20, 2010 at 11:47 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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I’ve got a peaceful, easy feeling…and I know it won’t let me down…

The hippy in me loves that song.  It’s the same hippy in me that loves to garden, recycle and ride my bike to work. I definitely took advantage of two-wheeled transportation today.  Linzi‘s post about riding her Sea Breeze (love that!) to work reminded me I needed to follow suit.  It’s a beautiful day and I have been waiting for it to stop raining so I can take part in National Bike Month.  The month is almost over!  I was afraid foul weather would mean I couldn’t celebrate in all my Physio Fit bicycle glory.

Don’t worry — I totally did. 🙂  Biking to work 🙂 saved on gas 🙂 helped the Earth out 🙂 doubled as cross training for today.  Awesome!

Pre-cycle trip to the office, I was up bright and early after three snooze button pushes and enjoyed a Green Monster Smoothie for breakfast.  Look how foggy it was!  I felt like I was in Ireland.

Okay, okay.  A stretch, I know.  I was still in the Midwest.  A girl can pretend.

We were out of regular coffee beans this morning, so Sam fired up his espresso percolator and super charged our mornings with a little bit of the strong stuff.

I only had about a half a cup…twice.  So, okay, a full cup of espresso.  It’s fine, I am a coffee addict, I can handle it.  Here’s a fun tidbit: Sam is actually the reason I’m such a coffee drinker.  When we were getting to know each other in Spain, we couldn’t really hang out at each other’s host homes, so we’d meet for coffee after class.  We’d sit for hours, talking and laughing and doing homework (only sometimes…actually, hardly ever ;)), learning a little more about each other.  We even became regulars at this one shop, Esperandote.  They started on our orders when we walked in the door.  It was like a Spanish, caffeinated version of Cheers.  *sigh* Memories.

Lunch consisted of leftovers (tortellini with spinach/tomato “sauce”), cucumbers, grapes, the last of the farmer’s market strawberries *super sad face* and some mixed nuts to snack on later.

Nutritious and delicious.  I don’t think it’s just a coincidence those words rhyme, do you?

See you later tonight!  I’m meeting up with friends for a Young Professionals Happy Hour after work.  Dinner is already set and ready to be ateAte up! Stay tuned to see what I built for the ‘buds (taste buds, that is).

What’s that?

Adios!

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