Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tagged by Terri

1o years ago (1998)

1. I was a 39-year-old mother of 4 boys, and as a result, knew ALL there was to know about major league baseball, past & present. (now I couldn't even tell you who's going to the series)

2. My dearest husband had just put his resume on the internet to see what it would bring. (it brought us from NY to MI)

3. I had no energy and the thought of running more than 3 steps had never crossed my mind.

4. I was teaching the four boys at home. The oldest had just become a teenager.

5. I had tried the following diets to lose my fat rear....Atkins, Suzanne the genetically thin Sommers, Glycemic Index, and any other ridiculous thing I could find. I was somewhat successful on Atkins until I stopped and gained IT ALL BACK plus some! .....Those days are behind me(no pun intended)...whew!

5 Things on today's 'to do' list:

1. Organize all my paperwork

2. Plan out my meals for the rest of the month.

3. Go to the cleaners

4. Read 'A Whole New Mind'

5. Run on pavement for the first time in a few weeks.

5 Things I would do if I were a millionaire:

1. Pay off our house

2. Publish a book for my dh

3. Start the business that dh has always wanted to start. He's always wanted to start a business and use it to teach & mentor underprivileged young adults and bring them into being a productive part of the business.

4. Buy a house while the prices are low for Jim's parents.

5. I have two siblings either out of work or soon-to-be out of work. I'd love for them to not have to worry about their families while they're looking for suitable employment. (they're both great at what they's just that Michigan is slowly swirling around the bowl, and a flushing sound is imminent)

5 places I have lived:

1. Saratoga Springs, NY

2. Antrim, NH

3. Livonia, MI

4. Jackson, MS

5. Chicago, IL

5 jobs I have had:

1. I worked cutting fabric at a fabric store.

2. Clerk at an insurance agency

3. Inside sales at a large electronic components firm

4. Admin for a VP at Brookstone's home office

5. A Mom (Head chef, short-order cook, baker, human pacifier, pet cleanup squad, maid, #1 fan, baseball card collector, pre-school, elementary & middle school teacher, referee, taxi-driver, photographer, gardener, lawn care provider, painter, plumber, accountant, activities director, travel agent, coach's assistant, frugality facilitator, burp cloth, birth expert, cake decorator, receptionist, barber, insurance agent, first aid administrator, high-school counselor, cobbler, quilter, librarian, snow removal specialist, laundress, party planner, costume designer, atm machine, driving instructor, substance abuse counselor {{eye roll}}, secretary, highly efficient worrier, and seamstress.)

Addendum to number 5 directly above......I don't know how any of you who work full time manage to do that AND be a mom. Hats off to you! Talk about juggling! I wish I had that kind of energy.

I hereby tag anyone who hasn't done this one yet.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The White Flag

The decision isn't one I'm happy with, but it is probably the one that makes the most sense in the long run(no pun intended). I've decided not to sacrifice the long term for the short term. There's no way I'll be able to run 26.2 this weekend without doing some real damage. This is killing my pride. I really wanted to do this.

I'm still so glad that I've had the marathon in front of me for the last 6 months. It pushed me to do things I never, EVER dreamed possible. Me, run 13.5 miles ? Never! But I did it. And did it more than once! Me, run four times a week? Never! But I did-----every week until I couldn't! This was an eye-opening experience for me. I've learned never to assume that I CAN'T do something.

Through this whole experience I've learned that lifetime runners are some of the most gracious people around. I've always wrongly assumed that they were an elitist group of Type-A's who thumbed their noses at us mere mortals. Boy, was I wrong! Everyone I've met through this blog has been encouraging, helpful, motivating, considerate, and lots of fun! I've learned that runners run for a million different reasons, and that they come in all shapes & sizes. I've also learned that they're a readily accepting group that loves to share their sport with newbies like me. It's been a great experience. Thank you!

I'll be posting periodically but mostly just checking in on how everyone's fall races are going.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

It's just a mile, but it's progress!

Guess what? I ran a mile at my physical therapy appointment the other day! This was encouraging to me no matter what happens with the marathon. I was scared that I was losing
all my cardio, etc. It felt so good to RUN! It didn't tire me out and my legs felt good. I think I might be able to do a little real running this weekend. Woohoo!

I'm not deciding anything for sure until the week before the marathon. Terri said "you only do your first marathon once"......and that really gave me something to think about. I don't want to start the marathon if I'm fairly certain I can't finish. I would rather do it next year, with Jim, and finish with my head held high than feel like I've failed because I stopped partway through this one. If I'm able to do a half decent run over the next week, I will consider going ahead and running 26.2 We shall see.

I've learned a lot over the last few months. If I do postpone my first until next fall, there are things I would change in my training. First of all, I would be cross-training from the start. I am convinced that not cross-training was probably responsible for both of our problems. The muscles we use for running were the only ones getting stronger. That's a problem seeing that I was fairly sedentary up to the commencement of my training. The PT has been having me to some exercises to strengthen my other leg muscles and I'm just like jelly when I'm done.....because I'm so darn weak.

The other thing I'd do is stretch after every run. I don't think I really ever stretched. Not good.

This has been quite an adventure and it's not over yet. It felt good to come home the other day from the PT and be all excited because I could run a mile. Being deprived of the running made me realize that I have fallen in love with it. I don't think I can go back to being a couch potato again.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Misadventures, Part II

Lest you ever get the idea that pathetic shouldn't apply here, note the following incident.

Upon taking my daughter to the park, I was promptly summoned to push her and two little friends on the tire swing. I must add here that my prowess in providing a wild & crazy tire-swing ride for the playground imps is, well, legendary. I got them spinning around in a rather nauseating manner, then went to change directions so my car would not be covered with regurgitation on the way home. When I grabbed the metal chain, it turned the tables on me and got caught on my wedding ring, dragged me to the ground, and nearly took my finger off. I had to get back up to separate said ring from the swing's chain. My ring now looks like a smushed lemon instead of a circle. I also should have removed my ring then because now my finger is so swollen, my ring won't come off.

However, I do know a little trick to getting the ring off. Windex. Yep. It makes it extremely slippery and off will come any ring. I should tell you how I know this even though it will make the Pathetic family look even more pathetic. A few years back, son#3 somehow managed to put his finger through a hole in his skateboard helmet....which is all well and good if you can get the finger out again. He couldn't. We ended up in the ER when soap, butter, etc. didn't work. Should people like us be allowed to reproduce? Sometimes I wonder.

The Misadventures of the Pathetic Family

Since this is supposed to be a running blog, I suppose I should talk about running. Unfortunately, I have no actual running to report. Jim and I went to 'couples therapy' on in we both saw the physical therapist at the same time. She tortured his hamstrings while I was getting warmed up and then she turned around and stretched the backs of my legs until I was ready to kick her. Honestly, I have a love/hate relationship with that whole stretching thing. My legs feel great since then but oh, the pain at the time. Jim's legs have not improved much and it seems that one thing starts to feel better and something else gets whacked out. We feel decrepit this week. This is not good.

Then there are the Pathetic offspring. Ah. Bright children they are. Usually. Sort of. Anyway.....This week, the seventeen-year-old (son#4) did something remarkable. He lost the keys to his car (once again, I use that term loosely since not much about that pile of junk still resembles a motor vehicle). Now I realize that people lose their car keys all the time but in the Pathetic family, we don't do things like normal people. We do them BETTER. No, numero quatro didn't just lose his car keys ..........he went out two days later and lost the remaining set of car keys. The car has been parked at the grocery store all week. This, of course, made me extremely happy since then he had to use MY car all week to get to school (he's going to community college). I had to walk to work. What is wrong with this picture?

Tomorrow, he finally has a day off both school and work and he'll call Honda or a locksmith. I must post a picture of his car. It's an '88 Civic with royal blue hubcaps and no rear bumper. The old-lady-gold paint has dulled and it has bright Milford-Maverick-Red writing all over the hood and sides from when some of his high school friends used window paint to write on it before a football game. (not advisable)

Right now, I'm extremely busy and it's a good thing because it's keeping me from being too depressed about the running. I think I might be up and running by marathon time, but I will have lost so much of my conditioning. I refuse to sacrifice the long-term running for the short-term marathon goal, so when I go back to the sports medicine doctor, I will address those issues. I don't want to do even half the marathon if it means I'm going to be unable to run for the next few months. Jim and I are both anxious to get back to running together. We'll see what the Doc says. In the meantime, I just don't have the time, between homeschooling, mothering, and work, to always manage to get to the Y when there is lap swimming, babysitting, etc. I also am having trouble switching gears. It was tough enough to train my body to run double digits.....but to retrain it to do hours of swimming? Daunting at this point. Whine, whine, whine, and whine again. Excuse my hormones.

Tune in later this week when I will try to be a more positive person or at least post some pictures of Dave's car to make you laugh.

Happy Running! (or limping, as the case may be)

Friday, September 26, 2008

A Change in Scenery

It looks like I'll be spending more time smelling chlorine and less time staring at asphalt. I went to the Sports Medicine Doc today. Being an inexperienced runner, I just wasn't sure if the pain was something I should get tough and run through or rest from. Apparently, my instincts were correct. I shouldn't be running right now. I will be going to the physiotherapist thrice next week, and every week up until the marathon. In the meantime, he has suggested that I swim like crazy to keep the cardio workout intense without bothering my legs.

It is actually my bursa in the upper portion of my lower leg. I just thought it was my calf muscle. He thinks I might still have a shot at completing the marathon, but we'll have to see. It was just nice to be able to pinpoint exactly what the problem is. This guy was good! He asked more questions and listened more than any doctor I've ever had in any field of medicine. His staff was terrific. If you live anywhere near here, and find yourself needing a Sports Medicine guy, give him a call.....Dr. Michael Montico in Milford, MI. He's a family practice doc as well.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


What the heck? My left calf hurts so bad that I limp when I try to run. Something tells me I shouldn't try to run through this. Not this week! Not so close to the marathon! I HAVE to do the long run this week!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunday Summary

Out the door at 9:00
Run 13.5 miles
Come home
Take Advil
Take ice bath
Stuff face full of food
Take 3-mile walk with daughter
Sit at park for a while
Order pizza
Pick up and eat pizza
Web surf and find out encouraging news about Detroit Marathon here *
Dream about sleep.

*While this might merely be an elevation map to some, to me it means that I probably can actually handle this's all flat but the bridge and the tunnel!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

What Kind of Fool Am I?

Well, I got all my mid-week mileage in (18 miles) and my long run is tomorrow morning. In theory.

Carrie was at a birthday party all day long so Jim and I decided to go out for "a little bike ride."

Heaven help us.

It was gorgeous out, we were feeling good, the breeze was blowing, it smelled like fall, and we had a little energy. Before we knew it, we were 13 miles away from home! Then we had to come back. Mind you, neither of us has been on a bike for more than 8 miles since we were like 19 years old. That, my gentle reader, was a l---o-----n----g time ago. We stopped at Starbucks about .2 miles from home and walking felt like I had been riding a horse all day. "Hey, look at those funny old people who can barely walk!"

We somehow made it home, took our Advil, and are now resting comfortably. Somehow I don't think 26.5 mile bike ride was a smart thing to do, seeing that I will be starting my 18-mile run less than 12 hours from now. Live and learn. What an idiot. I've got to say though, whatever happens, it was worth it. We had fun.

Have a good long run everyone! I can't believe most of our marathons are less than a month away! How exciting! I still finish a long run and say to myself, "Wow! I can't believe I just did that!"

Monday, September 15, 2008

My long-ish Run

Due to the unusually busy weekend, I did my long run (sort of) this morning. I cut it nearly in half, but I'm going to do that same distance for all my short runs this week, then my 16 on Sunday. That should catch me up without doing too much damage.

Today's run was kind of fun. This was the first time I ran for an hour in the dark so that was interesting. It was also raining, which I really don't mind, except that I didn't want to get the Garmin soaked. I was certain I would trip over some half-rotted deer or raccoon carcass laying by the side of the road. I couldn't see anything! I had headlights shining in my eyes and it was pitch black out.

It eventually stopped raining, and got a little lighter out. One of the roads I cover on my long run is fairly busy that time of day and has some huge sweeping curves. I swear some of those commuters were taking them EXTRA wide trying to cull the running herds (or nerds, as the case may be).

Running in semi-wet running clothes has its disadvantages...... everything starts to ride up. One doesn't want to become a spectacle whilst running, of course, (nor sicken the passing motorists)so I was glad that it warmed up to the point where I needed to remove my running jacket and tie it around my waist.....thus covering my sorry backside and saving the eyes of the viewing public.

Most of the dirt roads were pock-marked with deep ruts and mud puddles this morning. Some were nearly impassable without almost twisting my ankle. With all that mud, I'm happy to report that I was only mud-splashed by a passing car once. It was unavoidable.

I got in 9.25 miles and believe it or not, I was happy with that. After freaking out about my training (or lack thereof), I've kind of given myself a virtual slap in the face back to reality. There is more to life than running. There are more important things than completing the marathon before I'm 50. I still plan on shooting for it, but if missing some of my training due to real life stuff is going to hamper goes on. I really think I still can pull it off and I'm certainly going to do my best........but as trivial as it may sound to some, a little girl's birthday party, family weddings, making sure we have clean laundry, actually cooking meals, spending time with my husband, etc., are all the REAL things that my life is made of. Running is great and I love being in shape! I need to run. I want to run. But it is a privilege and somewhat of a luxury to be able to spend nearly 8 hours a week pounding the pavement in a pair of expensive shoes. It's doing me a world of good, but if I go 22 miles instead of 26.2, the world will not end. There will be more chances in other races. Most other moments in life are not subject to 'do-overs'.....especially when it comes to motherhood & marriage. So, I'll keep working hard and see what happens. The goal hasn't changed....just my perspective.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Running while Panic-Stricken

Okay, just when am I supposed to do all this running? Now that the short runs are all long runs and the long runs are insane three+ hour-long ordeals......just how do I fit this all in and not desert my family entirely? We were in Chicago this weekend and I just couldn't do the long run. We had to leave somewhat early in the day and actually wanted to spend some time together as a family while we weren't zipping off to a wedding or something. So I probably really messed with my training but that's the breaks.

I'm on track for this week and I should be able to get all the runs in but next week Jim's going out of town again. With all of Carrie's older siblings(aka mom's running babysitters) in college, it's going to be tough to get the runs in again. There is the Y for the 5-milers but the mid-week 8 is pretty horrible on a treadmill. I guess I'll figure it out. At least it's cool out so I can go any time of day. Oh.....a stroke of genius! Maybe she can stay with grandma & grandpa during one of my runs next week! I'd have to drive over there but I can just borrow Jim's Garmin and run around there.

Anyway, excuse my panicked rant. I guess it's just that September is usually crazy for me anyway with homeschooling (and this year we're doing a co-op of sorts with two other families)but this September includes two family weddings, Carrie's birthday party for her friends on Saturday that I have almost nothing prepared for, two business trips for Jim, some new part-time work for me, and trying to emotionally & physically prepare myself for the marathon. I'm starting to have marathon dreams at night.....last night it was me, about 5 miles into the marathon realizing that I left my Endurolytes at home and nobody could make it back to get them for me.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Garmin is His New Best Friend

Jim LOVES the Garmin 305. Unfortunately, it kind of depresses him that he's not really able to do much mileage with his hammies the way they are. He's been using it on the bike and on some short runs. I might actually get to try it out this weekend in Chicago.

I've got to leave to pick my dearest up at the airport in a few minutes so I'll get going for now. Thanks to everyone who gave their thoughts on GPS devices when I was shopping!

Happy running!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Running While Remiss

I've been terribly neglectful of this blog of late. Real life has a way of getting in the way of blogging life. Now all the boys are in college & settled into their schedules. I'm meeting tomorrow with the other two moms in our little co-operative homeschooling arrangement. Our school year (for my almost-7-year-old) begins on Monday. I'm also doing some creative (hopefully) stuff for a friend's store in town. All these things have contributed to my dereliction of duties.

However, I HAVE been running! I did 13.5 instead of 16 this Sunday but considering that's 13.5 miles more than I could have run 4 months ago, I'm not complaining. No major problems, I just tuckered out and it was getting HOT outside!

I've got another 16 miles to run this Sunday while I'm in Chicago. I hear they actually have water & gatorade for runners along Lakeshore Drive because there are so many on Saturday and Sunday. That would certainly be nice. I'm a little bit nervous about it seeing that Jim won't be able to do the whole thing due to hamstring problems. He usually keeps me motivated when I'm ready to quit and go home. Also, I don't particularly like the idea of running by myself in a city where I'm not familiar with the route. I guess that's why I'm hoping there are lots of runners when I start out that morning.

One of the things that's tough for me when I run is just the sheer volume of time it takes to complete those long runs. I am slow to begin with but even if you're a little quicker it still takes a chunk of time. Is this just me? I guess I don't like always having to arrange something for Carrie week after week so that we can get our running done. I know that in the long run it's good for her to have healthy, fit parents but in the short term, she has a few really boring hours every week. Parental guilt. Does it ever end?

Along with neglecting my own blog, I've been lax in visiting some of yours. Some of you have posted such poignant words lately that provoked a lot of thought.

It's getting late. Time to get some sleep before I have more of that insanely good cornbread that I shouldn't have made tonight. Call it delicious but definitely don't call it health food.

'Night all!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Of Course!!!

No sooner do I order the Garmin and Murphy's law goes into effect.

Son #2 called from Mt. Pleasant and some idiot apparently smashed in his windshield in the CMU parking lot overnight. Grrrrr. It's a beater so we don't have comprehensive coverage on it. There goes another $200.

Jim ended up staying at work until early this morning. When he finally came out to go home, he had a flat. The tire had a huge shard of metal in it and couldn't be repaired. We had to replace that tire, and the front ones were pretty bad so we just had to do the whole thing. Say goodbye to another $300.

I'm just glad I had saved up for the Garmin before I ordered it. Now I'm not panicked about all the other stuff. It's just a pain.

Tomorrow I'm doing my run before my day begins so I'm not thinking of excuses not to run it all day. After all, what's a piddly four miles, right?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Breakin' up is hard to do!

Last night set the stage for a disappointing run this morning. At around 3:30 in the morning, the thunder and lightning sounded like it was going to split our house in two. I knew that within seconds Carrie would be crawling into bed with us (I didn't blame her - I would have been scared, too, if I were only 6). She did. The cat followed. I was in the middle and cooking like a roast goose. Needless to say, I hadn't slept much when the alarm went off at 5:30 for our long run. Argggg!

Somehow we fell back to sleep and woke around 7 but by the time we were out the door and had Carrie taken care of and one of her brothers were rousted to look after was almost 8:00. The first 3.6 went well ...we planned to do the same loop 4 times. Jim's hamstrings screamed at him to quit after the first loop. I kept going and did my second loop. Then I zipped by the car, and had Jim drive me home. I think the humidity was close to 90% when we got out there, the sun got hot, and I decided to break my run in half, doing the second part this evening.

I must tell you that I seriously considered wimping out entirely once it got around 7:00. Then I told myself, "I'm a marathoner, I CAN do this!", strapped on my handy-dandy new Amphipod Run-Lite Snapflask 4, downed half a snickers marathon bar, and out the door I flew---okay--out the door I staggered.

I did my first loop, considered getting in the car and driving home. Gave myself the speech again and started my second loop. I got close to halfway into it, and heard Jim's ring on my cell-phone. There were major problems at work and he had to go in and oversee the fixing of the problems, and I had to come home to watch Carrie so he could leave in a hurry. Wow, I was actually moving my rear quite speedily when the adrenalin kicked in. Unfortunately, I shorted myself some mileage. No big deal. Life happens.

By the way, I did get Jim the Garmin 305. Don't tell....he doesn't know. Should come in about a week. Of course I'm very disappointed that right now he's feeling less and less like he's going to be able to keep up with the training for the big race if he keeps having hammie troubles. We were having so much fun doing this together. I'm not giving up hope yet. So who do you go to when that stuff keeps happening. A sports medicine guy or what? I think I'll call the track coach at the high school tomorrow. Maybe he knows of someone good.

Lessons learned this long run:
  • Get out there plenty early (yeah, I know.. this was on my list last week)
  • Don't break up the run. Be like Nike and JUST DO IT!
  • Bring your watch, stupid!
  • Get mentally tough. {{{over-exaggerated eye roll}}}

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Wow, Thanks!!

Thanks so much for all the feedback on the GPS devices. Based on all of that, I think I'm going to go with one of the Garmins. I think the accuracy issue with the Nike+ would make him bonkers so that's probably out. The 205's and 305's are SOOoooo inexpensive right now that they're pretty hard to pass up. I was tempted by the 405 but it's nearly twice as much as the others right now and, although he very much deserves it, I think I'll opt for one of the older models seeing that we just paid one kid's tuition and will pay the other three over the next two weeks. Anyway, now I'm just determining which features I think will be important to him. I think he could take or leave the heart monitor and I'm not certain if you can turn that off on the 305 so I need to make a call or two.

His birthday isn't for a few months but I'm going to give it to him early, that way he'll have it for most of our training and the marathon.....AND he'll be really surprised. Cool.

Did my 7 miles tonight on the dreaded treadmill. It went well. I walked out of the Y and said to myself, "Wow, I can do 7 miles and it's not even my longest run, I'm the bomb!" Yeah, pretty lame to pat myself on the back but hey....whatever works! I think sometimes it's good to congratulate ourselves on things. I think it's good to acknowledge that you're taking something difficult and conquering it. It can spur us on to try more things we previously thought were next to impossible.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Training Report and a Request for Advice

This was an interesting week but I learned a lot. When it came time for Tuesday's 4-miler, I was still too exhausted from last Sunday's long run and my legs just weren't up for it. I did it on Wednesday instead. I ran the 6 early Friday morning and had one of my best runs ever. I didn't want to run both days leading up to my long run so I skipped the last 4-miler.

Sunday's scheduled run was a 12-miler. We started at the Y parking lot again. I REALLY struggled this time.....not with pain, I just felt like I was at the top of my effort level cardio-wise....and I wasn't going fast at all. We run by the car at the 6.7 mile mark to get fresh water bottles, throw down some gatorade, etc. By the time we hit the car this time, Jim's hamstring was killing him as well as his heels and the prudent thing for him to do was stop before he did real damage. So, he was done for the day. Let me tell you how much I DIDN'T want to keep going. It was getting so hot out (we got started WAY too late again) and the run was almost beating me anyway. I decided to finish the rest of the mileage on the treadmill now that the Y was open and I was about 30 yards from the door.

So, Jim took little Carrie out for breakfast while I ran inside and ran the rest of the mileage. I must confess that I fizzled at the 11-mile mark. I just had no more in my tank. Couldn't do it. Besides, I had just run almost 7 miles outside and I knew I smelled (sorry) and the Y was filling up. I didn't want to be that smelly person on the treadmill that was bowling over the person next to me.

I grabbed a McDonald's chicken sandwich on the way home along with a sugar-free vanilla iced coffee. Both tasted like the ultimate feast. When I got home, I filled up the tub with ice water and soaked for 20 minutes, right in my running clothes with my crossword puzzle and a cup of hot tea. I will do this after EVERY long run because I have zero pain today!

Lessons learned this week:

1) Stick to scheduled running days so I don't throw my week off.
2) Don't do a long run without Endurolytes.
3) Get the long run started much earlier or expect to die of heatstroke (I'm a heat-wimp).

Now, for the advice. I would like to get my dearest a cool running gadget like a Garmin or Nike+ for his birthday. I am woefully ignorant in this area. What gps-type gadget do you use? What do you like or not like about it? What would you change? If you were making the purchase all over again, what would you get? What are the features I don't want to do without? Thanks in advance for your help.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Week 6- DONE!

We did every inch of our 11-miler yesterday! We have the aches and pains to prove it. Jim's going to the podiatrist on Wednesday. My feet seem to be in pretty good shape other than a little pain because I am klutzy. Right around mile 5 I took a corner a little weird and landed on the side of my right foot. It seemed to feel better right away but then just about at mile 7 it started hurting pretty bad. I soaked it in ice water in the afternoon. It felt pretty bad last night but after a night's sleep I can tell this isn't going to be a big deal.

I tried the Endurolytes which were extremely effective. Nothing to chew up or taste so overwhelming sweetness wasn't a problem like with those sport beans. Just past the halfway point I did try a double latte PowerBar Gel. Sickly sweet but for some reason, the coffee/chocolate flavored stuff doesn't gag me like the faux fruit flavors. It's funny---I feel weird even using some of this stuff because I still don't see myself as a runner. I still feel like I don't belong in the running store. Oh well.

I was darn proud of us for doing our 11 miles. It is, however, really humbling to consider that the elite marathoners do the whole marathon in less than what it takes me to do 11 miles. Wow!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

For Real?????

Monday I was flying pretty high after conquering the big TEN. That was until I looked at what I was supposed to do in the dreaded push-up challenge for week 3. Are you KIDDING me? I have been faithful for two weeks and I still can't go more that 6 at a time. What gives? How about all of you other push-up challenge people out there? Were you guys really able to progress at the recommended rate? Go ahead and tell me, I can take it. I will just chalk it up to me being almost twice as old as most of you and at least ten years older than the rest of you. Except, of course, for my sister....who would probably blow my doors in should we have a mano a mano pushup challenge. (yeah---she's the one who did 40 miles on an elliptical machine during the Detroit Marathon last year because her podiatrist told her she shouldn't run on pavement). I guess I'm repeating week two this week. If ever I am thinking about changing the name of my blog, I will just remember my push-up challenge and be certain that 'pathetic' definitely belongs in the title.

The good news is that my four-mile run last night was great. I still can't believe that I can run that long. I still can't believe I can do it without someone having to use the paddles to revive me. I can't believe I'm a third of the way through the marathon training. I can't believe how tired my legs are. I can't believe how much I don't care! I'm so glad I'm doing this!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Oh yeah!!!!

It certainly wasn't an effortless glide, but we did it. We conquered the first double-digit run!

We had planned on getting out the door around nine in the morning, simply because the humidity was supposed to be astronomical early in the morning. Unfortunately, what made the humidity disappear was the hot sun, apparently. By the second half of our run, even though it was less humid, the sun was close to directly overhead and it was pretty blistering hot. Around mile 7, things started to cramp up, we're still trying to work out this whole hydration thing, and we were getting just plain tired. We started saying things to each other like, "there's no way we're going to be able to do the whole ten miles." We had ingested some delightful (gag me) sport beans at mile 5 and thankfully, they (and the gatorade) started to take effect around the beginning of the eighth mile. Huge difference. We just kept going. We were slow but on we went. We altered our path a bit to keep us out of the direct sun, and our ten miles ended at the front door of the Y. How fortuitous! The air conditioning felt great, as did the ice cold drinking fountain. The lady at the front desk said, "wow...did you guys run here?" "Yes, Ma'am! Ten miles!"

We walked back almost a mile to where we had parked the car, went home & showered, grabbed the little darling, and all headed out to eat lunch. Yikes, did I ever EAT! I wolfed down a mini greek salad (light dressing, of course), a chicken kabob, a baked potato, and enough iced tea to float an ironclad. I could have gone on eating all afternoon, but I didn't. We headed to the Y with Carrie and floated around in the training pool. Let me tell you how good that felt. Hardly anyone was there.

Today, my legs feel the most exhausted they have yet, but my hip is fine, Jim's feet are fine, and we're looking forward to next week's long run. We've got to figure this whole hydration thing out. I have to figure out some quick energy source that doesn't gag me with sweetness. It really isn't fair that we can't just burn all our body fat for these long runs.

It wasn't pretty, it wasn't fast, but we did it!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Tuesday-3, Thursday-5, Friday-3, Sunday - 10!!!!!

Just about 7 hours from now, I will do my very first double-digit run! I'm so excited! I pretty much sailed through my short runs this week. Yeah, of course they were work but just not killers like when I first started.

TEN miles. Wow! I went on a late night Gatorade run. I'm all stocked up on Cliff Bars, Sport Beans, and my personal favorite...the PayDay Sport Bar. Son#3 is actually running with us tomorrow. He hasn't run in over a month but I'm sure he'll hardly be sweating as he completes his ten miles in half the time it takes us. Ah, youth!

I just hope I'm at least this excited tomorrow AFTER the run! I'll keep ya'll posted.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Looking Like I Earned It

When we go to the Y to run, the machines only let you do an hour at a time, then you have to restart the stupid things. The other night I just restarted it after 4 miles so I didn't have to do it mid-mile. I ran down the hall (literally) to use the ladies room (hey, I'm 49, REMEMBER??) and then jumped back on the machine and restarted it. By then my face was red, my hair was dripping with sweat, my shirt was a bit soaked and I was looking a tad like I was dying. Just after that, someone jumped on an exercise machine close to me....probably looked at my machine and thought, "holy moley---this lady looks like she's going to pass out and she's only done three tenths of a mile!" Let's be honest ALWAYS sneak a peak at the console of everyone else's treadmill to see how fast and far they're going! Don't you? Well, call it vanity, but when I've already done a few miles and look like it, I want the machine to SAY SO!

In fact, I want the treadmill to say, "Hey....this lady over here is working her formerly enormous derrierre off and she's already run 4 miles this evening!!!" It should preface that announcement with one of those horrible long, obnoxious noises like on the 'emergency broadcast system'---just so everyone is paying attention. I hope, however, that it keeps the speed details of my runs to itself.

Monday, July 28, 2008

At Least Only Part of My Pain is Due to Stupidity

Ouch. I took Carrie to the waterslide/beach the other day. As usual, I was running around doing stuff at the last minute and left myself little time to get there to meet the other moms. There was just enough sunscreen left for my little red-head. I didn't want to keep everyone else waiting so I didn't stop for any more. Bad move. That was Friday. I'm still in agony.

Ouch. Ouch. Did my 8 miles last night. Okay, I really only did just over 7.5 because the gym at the Y closed 15 minutes before the Y actually does and I misjudged how long it was going to take me to do my run, including driving, in and out of the car, checking in, warm-up, etc. I'm not feeling guilty (too much, anyway) about that 1/2 mile deficit. My run went fairly well and I definitely could have handled the rest of the run. However, for the first time in my short running career, I am in real pain. I've got to do some more research to figure out exactly what it is but if feels like something with my hip adductors??? Whatever it is, it hurts. It's only on the right side, and I wasn't feeling it before when I was running, only when I was getting on my bike, or trying to sit with my right leg crossed over my left. Until yesterday. I messed with the speed a lot trying to squeeze my whole run in. I don't THINK that had anything to do with it but I'm such a newbie to all of this, I don't know.

By the way, we've been doing the last few runs on the treadmill because Jim is suffering from plantar fasciitis and thought the softer surface might help. (it has been, thankfully) I have been setting the treadmill to a 1.0 incline just to better simulate outdoor running.

Last night's run was tough, but a reminder that if we've come this far from where we were a few months ago, we CAN run a marathon! WooHOo! Go us!

Friday, July 25, 2008

A Little Running, A Little Love

I ran my 5 on the treadmill at the Y. I'm cranking it up just a little faster and trying to finish the last mile a minute faster than I usually run (which still isn't even remotely fast). I am still in shock that I can actually run 5 miles. Yeah!!!

And now, for your viewing pleasure.....

This is one of the coolest things I have seen out there. If it's not legitimate, quite honestly, I don't even want to know. If you're a pet owner, you will LOVE this.....

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

How Cool!

Last night I did my 3-mile run on a treadmill at the 'Y' again. It was kind of fun (amidst the boredom) to think back to when I was trying to get in shape a few years ago. I had no real plan, I just did the circuit training a few times a week, did cardio (walking) on the treadmill, and hoped for the best. It didn't last particularly long and I would go for months doing nothing, then be committed to it for 3 weeks at a time ---off and on forever. Nothing in my body really changed at all. I did notice a change in my cardio-vascular system but lost it whenever I dropped off the face of the fitness earth for a while. I remember getting to the point where I could actually run for 1 whole minute. Afterwards my face was beet red and I looked like I was going to keel over and have a heart attack. It was fun to muse on that while I was knocking out three miles fairly easily last night.

Having the goal of the Detroit marathon has really pushed me along and kept me focused.

Having someone(my dearest husband) do this with me has kept me from quitting.

Having a proven plan (Non-runner's Marathon Trainer) has kept me confident that even I can pull this off.

Having other bloggers around has been very encouraging and educational.


Monday, July 21, 2008

Pushing Onward, Pushing Up, and Pushing 50

Last night's run was SEVEN miles. I realize this is not a huge distance for most of you, but even six months ago, my perception was that running a single mile was almost as impossible as teaching my cat to do the cha-cha or teleporting myself to the moon.

Jim and I are still running together, but using a little different methods. I'm not sure if it's because of my age and hormones, but I just get so roasting hot when I run, I almost can't take it. I am plenty hydrated, but I think I just don't sweat enough. Anyway, I find it most beneficial to do the Jeff Galloway method, where I insert a bit of walking. Jim keeps an incredibly steady pace and does zero walking. We finish our run at the same time. We're both pretty slow, but our goal for the marathon is to finish. Period. I have to overcome the feeling that I'm somehow cheating or shortcutting 'real' fitness/running when I interject some walking. Then I remember that I'm not doing this to impress anyone or get some kind of runner's credential card.....I'm just getting in shape and doing it the way that will help me stick with the program and finish the distance.

Today is a recovery day so we're going to start some weights & core exercises. We've also decided to do what many of you have done ----- commit to this ridiculous 100 push-up challenge. Running, mountain bikes, push-ups? Wow! I guess my routine has changed a bit.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Treadmill, AGAIN!

Why do I feel like a wimp when I do my runs on a treadmill? Unlike a lot of you, I kind of like the treadmill at the distances I'm doing now. Maybe it's because I don't have a Garmin or reasonable facsimile. I like knowing my pace, exact distance, time, etc. I like knowing exactly where I stand (uh, that would be figuratively, not literally---I can usually figure out my location!!!)

Thursday nights are just one of those times when all of our sons(aka babysitters) are either working or going somewhere so the treadmill at the YMCA just works. Carrie can go to kid's club and play in the gym and we can get in a decent run. Tonight was beastly outside...both hot AND the Y was a good option on all counts.

My four-miler went very well. I'm looking forward to SEVEN this Sunday but nervous as well. It just hit me today that in about 6 weeks, Jim and I are planning on running a Labor Day 30K. AAAAAAaaaaaahhhhhhh! We're actually planning on walking the last few miles simply because we won't be up to 18 miles in our training yet and we don't want to overdo it. (yeah....that's right...we're old wimps and proud of it!!) By the way....this race will go through one of the State Recreation Areas which will be loaded with deerflies. Have any of you found any effective repellants for those stupid things? They tend not to go for me but they LOVE my dearest husband.

Enough for tonight. I'm going to go eat a plateful of fresh mango, blueberries, raspberries, and peaches. Jealous? You should be. They're awesome!

Happy running!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Out of Town

I took a trip to Atlanta for a trade show this past weekend. I ran the night before I left on a treadmill (no big brothers home to watch Carrie) and had a really good 4-mile run. I was traveling much of the day on Friday so I didn't get that 3-miler in. Saturday and Sunday were spent on my feet from about 7:00 am to 9:00 in the evening walking every floor in AmericasMart in Atlanta. Somehow I did manage to get in 3 miles on Sunday on top of all that walking. I would have liked to run 6 but time was limited.

During my trip there were a few random things I learned....... here goes:

1) Don't drink an entire venti iced tea just prior to boarding a crowded jet.
2) Don't board a train in a town you've never been to before, hoping to figure out what bus to get on, just minutes before the transit system shuts down for the evening.
3) Don't wear new sandals to an event which will require you to be walking for 12+ hours per day up and down stairs, escalators, and the airport.
4) I learned that running shoes can be perfectly chic with a business skirt and blouse while trying to avoid learning lesson 3 again.
5) Having only five minutes left before they shut down the manager's reception at the hotel is not a reasonable excuse for shoveling in massive quantities of chips, salsa, goldfish, and grapefruit juice just 10 minutes or so before you planned to run 3 miles.
6) I learned that there is actually a company that makes paper & gifts from elephant poop. I can see it now. "Honey, I'm so glad you thought twice about getting me a garmin and went for the animal feces instead!"
7) I also learned the bright side of being inside a building all day that has no decent cell phone signal. Yeah! I didn't get even one call asking what was for dinner, what kind of food was in the house, etc.....all those earth-shaking things you MUST know immediately! My sons (all four of which will be in college in the fall) have called me while I am in the dentist's chair, at the doctor's office, running, working out at the Y, etc....all to inquire about food and it's ETP (estimated time of preparation). This begs the question.....How does one get on the Dean's list and still be mentally unable to assess the types and quantities of food present in the pantry and refrigerator. Mind you, each one of these creatures has spent considerable time working in restaurant kitchens.
8) I found that all of the following foods can be consumed in under 20 minutes: Chocolate-covered dried apricot, chocolate-covered blueberries, dried strawberries, meatballs, pickled hot green cherry tomatoes, tapenade, garlic stuffed olives, flax crackers with some berry I've never heard of before, cheddar mini biscuits, several different quantities of chocolate nut barks, 4 different varieties of tea, walnut cheddar, pecan pie, peach almond amaretto pie filling, various jams and jellies on various crackers and pretzels, countless chocolate pieces, pickled okra, another spicy pickled green cherry tomato, and my personal best bite in the show.....cinnamon peanut butter (I wanted to take the whole jar). I'm certain I've probably left a few things out.
9) I discovered that overeating in the last few minutes of show attendance combined with an acute lack of sleep can cloud your judgement and cause you to need to learn lesson 1 again. (this is especially inconvenient if the lady on the aisle seat has been at the airport for 23 hours prior to take off. Once she falls asleep, you and your bladder are just plain going to have to live with it, because that heap of humanity isn't going anywhere.

I promise to actually post about running next time!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Seeing that we are now supposedly real athletes, we decided we needed something to do on our non-running days. It couldn't just be something inexpensive like doing push-ups. No. We decided to go out and get mountain bikes. This is definitely the year of "WHAT COULD I POSSIBLY HAVE BEEN THINKING?"

Actually, this gives us something to do with our 6-year-old and our older 'kids' (I'm sure they'll be hoping we'll pony up for bikes for them{{eye roll}}. We've got some great trails about 15 minutes away in almost any direction. My daughter is absolutely aghast that I purchased a 'boys bike'. I'm just aghast that my helmet is so geeky looking. And I'm still trying to figure out how you put a derriere the size of Texas on a bike seat that's smaller than Rhode Island.

Last Week's Training Report

The first week of training went pretty well. I am still running Galloway style, which I need to stop feeling guilty about. I keep my walk breaks short and it does help me to keep going.

Our first 'long run' (not actually very long at this point) was a bit of a disaster. We had a perfect dirt road run mapped out, Dave (son#4) was home to watch Carrie, it was decent weather and we headed out the door. We parked the van and started running. About a half mile into it, we couldn't take it anymore and high-tailed it back to the car. It wasn't the feet or the shins or the was the blasted deer flies. There must have been 10 of them zinging around Jim's head.

We were determined not to bag out on our first long run so we put our behinds back in the van, drove a couple miles back into town and ran some more sans deer flies. We didn't go the whole five miles but we did okay. The little break in momentum had a big effect on my not-so-mentally-tough self.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

The Seventh Random Thing - My Dirty Little Secret

After bragging about my spaghetti sauce, I thought it appropriate to list another Fun Fact about myself that is actually very embarrassing for me. Ready? Here goes............ I am quite possibly the most disorganized slob in the entire world. There. Now you know. Don't ever drop by my house without notice, I won't let you in because the house looks like Katrina just blew through. I'm not sure why I'm like this. I'm not a pack rat. I'm not lazy. I guess I'm just not very efficient. I'm getting somewhat better. Maybe after the marathon, I'll apply myself to becoming an organized, efficient, domestic diva whose doors are always open. It might just be possible. A year ago I never would have dreamed that it was possible for me to run for 4 miles, but I did that yesterday and I'm running FIVE tomorrow. There might be hope for me yet.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Six Random Things

I have been tagged by Amy, Alien on the Run, and Ama,

1. Jim and I have five kids, the last of which was born when I was 42(my only girl). The first four kids (all boys) were all born within five and a half years. They were all homeschooled through 7th grade. All four of them will be in college (all different years & schools) in the fall($$$$--just shoot me).

2. I am a closet Jeopardy contestant wanna-be. I would apply, but I'd get on the show and that night the questions would all be about the movies or opera, both of which I care for very little (okay, I HATE them both)

3. I am a bit obsessive about doing the NY Times Sunday crossword puzzle each week. I usually keep them around until I'm able to solve them....even if I have to put them away for a while and look at them with fresh eyes a few weeks later.

4. I don't own and never will own a credit card and I will never again take out a car loan. Been there, done that, paid a LOooooNG time for the T-shirt! (sometime I will post pictures of the paid-for-hence-stress-free vehicles [I use that term loosely] that we drive as well as the well-rested look on my face that comes from being debt-free [except for our mortgage.]

5. I make the BEST spaghetti sauce. Don't even question it. Italians have got nothing on me. I'm not even the least bit modest about it either. Don't even get me started about my apple pie :-) No, really, DON'T!

6. If you came and stole my TV, I would probably send you a thank-you note. I watch a few HGTV shows and Jeopardy occasionally, but would spend all of about 37 seconds mourning the loss should it turn up missing or broken. (Oh, wait a minute....I need that thing for my Wii Fit!)

We're running out of bloggy runners to tag at this point so I will only be tagging a few: Alissa at Balancing Act (she has a great running blog), ShopJogBlog, (the only other blogger I know of that's planning on doing the Detroit Marathon), and the ladies over at We Run Like Girls (because I think they could all use an 'atta girl' at this point in their training from some other runners).

Here are the rules:

link to the person who tagged you.
post the rules on your blog.
write six random things about yourself.
tag six people at the end of your post.
let each person know they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog
let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Training Schedule, Week 1

Here's the plan:

Tuesday: 3 miles
Thursday: 4 miles
Friday: 3 miles
Sunday: 5 miles

I can do this. I can do this. I can do this. {{{{white knuckle fear}}}}

Looks like the run days this week will be the cooler days this week. I plan on running with wet hair anyway just because I always get so roasting while I'm running.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Panic Sets In

This is it. The real training starts this week. Tomorrow I'm supposed to run 3 miles, 4 miles on Thursday, 3 miles on Friday, and 5 on Sunday. I have not developed any mental toughness yet.....five miles might as well be 26.2 at this point.

I had a pretty lame running week last week. I had to take lots of 30-second walk breaks. I did some nutritional adjustments toward the end of the week that seemed to help. I have a history of being somewhat anemic. I thought it might be a good idea to look at what I usually eat and see how much iron I was getting. Yikes. I wasn't even getting 50% of the recommended amount. I got some of the supplements my doc recommended a while back. I prefer not to take supplements as I'd rather get nourished from real food, however, while I'm still on Weight Watchers, I feel like I can't consume enough iron-laden foods without going over my point values or overdosing on raw spinach. I also learned that tea can inhibit iron absorbtion. I probably drink two large pots of tea a day!!! I'm going to have to get some herbal stuff to feed my hot beverage addiction.

That little tweak should probably get me going again. I had some good weeks in there...that's why I was so surprised that I was such a lame slug this past week.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

A Wii Bit More

Just to address a few questions...

The Wii (around $260-300 depending on where you get it) comes with the Wii Sports disc which includes bowling, golf, tennis, baseball, and boxing....and the ability to give you sore muscles where you didn't even know they existed. It came with one wireless controller and we purchased an extra one (which I would advise for family togetherness).

Wii Fit was an add-on which cost us $89 (happy Mother's Day to me). It comes with yoga, strength, balance, and aerobic exercises and we haven't purchased anything additional to go with it. It weighs you, tells you your bmi (who knows how accurate it actually is) and does a body test any time you ask it to, in order to see how your balance is, etc. It keeps track of how much you've done, how many days.....tells you when you seem like you're getting too tired to do very well, etc. It will even tell you if it thinks you're obese. Yikes. Thankfully I haven't heard that yet. A year ago, I would have.

I still haven't exhausted all the games that are in Wii Fit. It rewards you by giving you new games and exercises for every large chunk of time you spend on it. So far I've got snowboarding, slalom, ski jumping, hula hooping, boxing, aerobics, about 10 different yoga moves, about the same amount of strength exercises, jogging, and a few other oddball games.

Again, if you're an athlete's might roll your eyes at this but I think it's pretty cool.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


I almost forgot. I ran 30 minutes again this morning. I took two 30-second walk breaks. It actually went fairly well but it was a little hot. I'm getting nervous for the heat of summer. What do all you runners out there do to keep cool when it's in the 90's and you're running several miles? Am I just overheating because I'm just getting used to running or does everybody feel like that when they're running in the hot sun?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Wii Fit, or in my case---Wii Aren't So Fit

If you're an avid exerciser/fitness nut, Wii Fit will probably not provide anything new for you other than a little fun. However, if you're a busy mom with not a whole lot of time to do anything but your work & running, it definitely helps you get a little bit more working out into your day. My legs are getting strong from running but the rest of me needs a little help.

I am a little intimidated going to an aerobics class because I am fairly uncoordinated. I can do the Wii Fit step aerobics here in my family room without injuring anybody or embarassing myself. I can take a run through the virtual park with my daughter regardless of the weather. I can learn Yoga exercises without all the eastern religion stuff that usually goes with a class. Slaloming down a ski hill is possible even in June, and I can float down a river in the middle of December. I don't have to leave the house and get a sitter. I can do this any time of day or night.

I haven't gotten to any seriously high-intensity cardio exercise yet, but new activities open up the more you use the program. I have broken a sweat, however, and the yoga really works your muscles. (just ask my thighs). It's a lot of fun and combined with the Wii Sports it's fantastic for families. My 6-year-old daughter can play against my 20-something sons and still have a shot at beating them. Everyone has a great time.

I guess what I'm saying is, if your idea of a good time is 6 hours on the eliptical machine followed by 400 push-ups....don't expect the Wii Fit to intensify your workout. If you just want to supplement your current exercise schedule, give it a try. If you're a complete couch potato or are a fitness newbie, definitely use this as something to get yourself into gear. I give it 4.5 stars out of 5.

Boring Post Warning!!!

Just checking in to let you know that I have nothing exciting to report, only that I am still being faithful to my training schedule.

I thought I would have trouble on my run last night because I overdid it on the Wii Fit. My thighs were SO sore. It was worth it. I'm not sure if it was the ski jumping or what but it worked some muscles in my thighs that running doesn't.

I am unhappy to report that I still have the arm strength of a gnat. Pushups are something I can only dream of. I can do a girl push-up (knees touching the ground ) but I am painfully weak. I think I better start picking up some of the free weights in the basement and do something to get rid of the 'batwings' I have in place of my triceps. I suppose it's better than the fat that used to reside there!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Two Weeks and Counting

This has been a crazy week. Jim had to head to Florida to help out his parents after his mom had a heart attack last Sunday. She is home and doing better. Jim got home Friday evening. We both ran two days on our own last week. We usually do Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. Because of babysitting issues, I had to do Friday morning instead of Thursday, which means I did Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I'm a little sore today, but yesterday's run was great! We actually pushed it to 30 minutes (no walk breaks) just because we were feeling so good! What a difference the cooler temps make. We ran right around 10:00 right after a storm as the moon was emerging from the clouds. It was incredible outside.

These last two weeks of pre-training are supposed to be four days of 30 minutes each. Then we start the real training and measure it in miles rather than minutes. I am still going at such a snail's pace that if I got any slower I think I'd tip over. That's okay. I'm still way ahead of what I ever thought possible.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Am I A Runner Yet?

At 49 years of age, I have completed my first 5K. Okay, I might not have had the grace of a gazelle, nor been faster than a speeding bullet (or turtle for that matter), but I did finish!

I am so glad I did it. It was a very relaxed, fun time. Not a huge crowd. A few families running. It was good. And even though I took a couple short walk breaks, I still bought myself a few plants afterward at the farmer's market!

I know this is still small potatoes but it's huge for ME. I never thought I'd be able to do this. Somewhere I guess I must have had some hope buried deep in my head because I kept trying.
Jim and I did our run together on Sunday with no problems. It was fairly wet out so I kept hitting the trees overhead so they'd soak me and keep me cool. Jim had to make an unexpected trip to FL to be with his parents while his mom is in the hospital (she's going to be okay) so I ran today on my own. I ran it in the rain and I'm so glad I did. It got hot when the sun came out.
As you can see, I really have come to like running in the rain more than sunshine.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Wait Until Sundown!

We made a huge mistake yesterday. Jim got home from work early and we decided to head out for a run around 3:00 on what was probably one of the hottest days we've had this year. We nearly cooked. I had started out the run with a little bit of a headache, too, so by the time I got to about 20 minutes I was ready to croak. So I didn't run the whole 25.....we did it a little more Galloway style...which I need to stop feeling guilty about. I think I need to get some really lightweight dri-fit shorts. Even my running skirt wasn't cool enough. On the other hand, maybe I just need to get acclimated to the new warmer temps.

I registered for the 5K. Every time I hear someone refer to it as a 'race' I roll my eyes and laugh. There is nothing about what I will be doing tomorrow morning that could possibly be construed as 'racing'. Surviving, yes. Having fun, yes. Pushing myself, yes. Looking silly, possibly. Racing, not a chance! I am running it with a new friend from Her stated goal(and a good one) is to have fun & cross the finish line with a pulse.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Ta Da!

Drumroll, please!

I (pathetic, non-athlete that I am)








We jumped straight to the 25 minutes of running. I can't wait to do it again....and yes, I'm going to do the fun run on Saturday!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Will Run for Thermopsis Chinensis

What a great day! It was beautiful out. I got some gardening done and then Jim suggested we get ourselves in gear and go for our run. We both completed two 15-minute run segments and didn't have any problems. We even ran some hills -- on purpose!

This next week is supposed to be 4 days of 20run/5walk/20run/5walk....and the next week is 25run/5walk. We're toying with going straight to the 25/5 and doing it two weeks in a row. The reasoning? It seems harder to start up after a 5-minute walk break than just continuing to run. I feel like we could have gone farther today on that first 15 minute run.....but getting moving again was a bit of a struggle.

I think I might do a 5K fun run next weekend in Brighton. A friend from mentioned the Shamrock Festival Fun Run and I think it might be a good thing to try. I've never done any type of race before and going to an event like this might help me feel more like a REAL runner. Okay, who am I kidding?.....maybe I just want to go to the Brighton farmer's market afterwards and indulge myself buying perennials. Hey, now THERE'S an idea. If I run the whole time, I can treat myself to some exotic plant! If I don't, I'll just have to turn around and go home. Sounds fair.

Friday, May 30, 2008

I Tried Anyway and I'm Glad I Did

Well, I felt better as the day went on. I wanted to give the run a good old college try so as soon as Jim got home we headed out the door.

The first 15 minutes were harder than last time but I still finished. The second 15-minute block was brutal. My stomach started whacking out a la last night (no dizziness, though) so I thought I should stop. I managed to do about 7 minutes then I kept walking fast while Jim finished his 15. I'm not sure whether I should try to do tonight's run tomorrow or just call it a lousy run and do my fourth run of the week Sunday morning. No big deal either way.

I've got to start posting some pictures of where we run to make things a little more interesting here.

Kind of Scary

One month from today we start our REAL marathon training. No more preliminary stuff. Do or die time.

We were supposed to get up and run this morning at 6:00 but I couldn't do it. I was up in the middle of the night so dizzy I had to crawl to the bathroom. I honestly think it's hormone-related. I am 49. It was kind of like a migraine without the pain but with the added fun of the room spinning in circles uncontrollably and me roasting like a stuffed goose. Same kind of nausea as a migraine, same time in the month, a little weird but hey....these things happen, I guess.

So, looks like we'll be running in the rain this evening instead of sunshine this morning. I kind of liked the challenge of the rain runs the last few times.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Long Way to Go, but I've Come a Long Way

Guess what I did last night? I RAN more than two miles. ME! Yes, ME! .... The one who had trouble running for a minute straight. Now I'm up to 15 minutes of running/5 walking/15 running/5 walking. Am I still pathetically slow? Yes! Do I care? No! I'm just glad to be following through on my marathon quest.

When Jim and I left the house last night, neither of us felt like we were going to be able to do the 15 minutes at a time, although we kept it to ourselves so as not to discourage each other. We both were thirsty so we sat in Starbucks sipping for a few minutes and headed out from there. The run was GREAT! Neither of us struggled and nothing hurt. I even sprinted to the car when we were done. ('sprint' being a relative term if you know my athletic prowess)

For the record, I did all of my training last week. I had one lame run in there but from what I hear, it happens to everyone. I haven't posted much because things are just nuts around here. I'm swimming in a pool of chaos in my house, which I hope to remedy today.

Thanks to all who have come to visit my blog. I used to have a very different picture of the running community. I assumed it was made up of elitist athletes who looked down their noses at posers like me. I'm finding the complete opposite to be true. What a fun & diverse bunch.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Addendum to the Addendum

Here is the whole story of that first women's olympic marathon. The woman's name from the prior post is Gabrielle Anderson-Scheiss and her time in that race was incredible. I was unable to find out what she did after that Olympics but she did recover quickly.

A Footnote to the Previous Post

I feel like I must point out that even in her heat-exhaustion -induced stupor, she still ran faster than I do now on a good day. Sigh.

Now I Remember Why I NEVER Wanted to Run a Marathon

I am excited to do this marathon in October, but I had to really get over some large mental blocks before I would even think about thinking about trying to decide whether to prepare for a marathon. In December and January when I was giving it serious consideration, I wasn't even remembering an image that was stored deep in my memory banks. This past week, that memory surfaced.

Flashback to the 1984 Summer Olympics. I was watching my first ever marathon. The best female runners were starting to come across the finish line. One of them looked like a stroke victim as she came 'running' (in a manner of speaking) into the stadium. One side of her body was stiff, she was running with a starboard list, and quite honestly looked like she was either going to die or lose control of all her bodily functions any minute. It was anything but pretty. At the time it was hailed as honorable and gutsy that she was finishing the marathon under the circumstances. She wouldn't let anybody help her or let the medical people touch her because it would have DQ'd her.

Being a couch potato at the time, I took one look at that and said, "not in a million years!!!!" There is honor, there is guts, and there is the stupidity of losing complete control in front of millions of people in order to finish a race that had already been won. Of course being 26 and naturally skinny without ever moving a muscle on purpose, I didn't see all the training and goals and whatever behind this rabid desire to finish the race. Not to mention that it was the first women's olympic marathon event ever.

I'm still not sure what I think of it....but that was my first ever look at marathoning. It's no great wonder I never wanted to push myself!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Two-Faced Runner

Okay, I toughed it out and ran in the pouring rain again last night, but I wimped out when it came to going the 15/5. I decided to stay at 10/5, 10/5 again this week. Part of this is because Jim was having stomach troubles last night and it wouldn't have been a pretty sight if he finished the run. I finished both 10-minute runs but didn't want to extend either of them until he's feeling better. It just makes it easier to train when we're in the same mode.

So with one face wimpy and the other determined, this two-faced runner leaves you for today. I'm off to the yard sales to find some awesomely creative things to plant my container veggie garden in.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Coming up with a Good Schedule

I forgot to post about Monday's run! Jim got home a little late from work, famished, so he had to eat before we went out. He wolfed some food down and we went out to run. Bad idea. From now on, I'll send him with a small snack or energy bar that he can eat on the way home (50 minutes) on nights we're running.

We did get the ten/five/ten/five in, but the 15/5/15/5 wasn't going to work. We're going to give it a go again tonight. We've got our training schedule all laid out for the marathon and it includes an extra week. On Saturday and Sunday we had toyed with giving ourselves that extra week to do the ten/fives again. I guess we're compromising and starting the 15's midweek. That's how we did it with the five-minute runs in the beginning. Somehow we have to shift our week around so that the new week begins on Monday.

Our preliminary and our marathon training never have us running more than 4 days per week. Right now we're planning on Monday evening, Wednesday before work, Thursday evening, with the long run of the week on Saturday. With the combination of evenings and a morning, we always have at least a day and a half between runs and a full day off before and after the long run. Seeing that we've never done a long run before and we're not really running any mileage yet, this schedule is just what we think will work for us. The only problem I see is that we're going to have trouble doing that Wednesday run consistently in the morning. I guess that's not a problem.....we can just run it at night if we have to.

I'd love to hear your input if you see any major flaws in this schedule. What has worked for you and what has been a disaster---and why?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday Runday

We got out the door by 8:00 this morning. It was beautiful out. It was a weird run today. After the gruelling run (aka mountain climbing session) the other night, I thought this would feel like a piece of cake. Quite the opposite. The first minute was extremely difficult. I wanted to quit and so did he. Alas, we persevered and it got easier a few minutes into it.

The second ten minute run started out the same way.....we had almost decided that we'd run two fives instead and then we mentally slapped ourselves in the face and got a grip. We finished the ten, no problem.

Every day I realize more and more just how significant a role the mind plays in EVERYTHING we do. The eating, the running, EVERYTHING! My body is already capable of doing these 10-minute runs without a big problem. My psyche just needs a little work.

Tomorrow night will be our first of 15 minutes running, 5 walking fast, 15 running, 5 walking. I am both incredibly excited about it and dreading it. I'll keep you posted. For now, I'm off to the showers so I don't offend the folks down at Leo's when we head in there for brunch.

The Glass Really was Half Empty!

As Jim and I set out for our run on Friday evening, we decided to take this beautiful dirt road that runs behind the middle school. Neither of us had been on that road in a while and thought it might be a nice change of pace and easy on the joints.

Knowing we'd be returning on the same route, I started grumbling a little (okay, a lot) when I noticed that the road was going continuously downhill. It didn't end. Around every bend, more descent. Early on I was chided by my dearest for being so negative.

Most of the way into the first running segment he realized it, too. We were going to do our entire return run uphill. It was pretty funny watching his face when he finally admitted to himself that he had just possibly underestimated the slope on that baby.

We finished our first 10-minute leg. Not bad (of course not---it was all downhill). We walked our five down to the creek, then started the second 10. We made it to about 8-1/2 minutes and I could not go one more inch uphill. I felt like my lungs, heart, & stomach were all going to end up on the road. I didn't like caving like that but I guess I'm just not that mentally tough yet. That was a rough one, but I'm still glad we did it.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Another Milestone

"I always loved running... it was something you could do by yourself, and under your own power. You could go in any direction, fast or slow as you wanted, fighting the wind if you felt like it, seeking out new sights just on the strength of your feet and the courage of your lungs." ~Jesse Owens

Yesterday was great! I was trying to be optimistic when we started out last night hoping to run ten minutes, walk five, run another ten, and walk some more. The reality is, inside I didn't really believe I was going to be able to do it. I did, however, tell myself to shut up and run....and that I did. The first ten was easier than the five at a time we did last week. The second ten was a little tougher because it started off going up a fairly steep hill. We finished it and felt okay afterwards!

Each one of these early successes put a deposit in my 'emotional bank' that I will be able to draw from when I'm thinking I can't possibly do the next step in the training. I know you seasoned runners out there must be rolling your eyes at what I'm viewing as great progress, but that's okay. I'm enjoying this. I'm getting fit. Each run is getting easier. I'm going to enjoy this season in my training because, come July, the mileage really starts to increase and I don't think there will be anything easy about it.

I'm looking forward to when we're running the entire length of the workout and not so concerned with "can I actually DO this?" In the meantime, I will say that I'm actually enjoying this. The physical act of running isn't the whole picture. What I love is the whole package....the sense of accomplishment, the stretching of my comfort zone, being outside, spending the time with Jim, looking at everyone's gardens, watching the seasons change, and enjoying being alive.

Monday, May 12, 2008

A Day to Rest

Momentum. It's powerful! I never thought the day would come when I was disappointed that it was a rest day. After some successful attempts at running last week, I'm itching to try the next step in the preliminary training.

The temperatures have plummeted yet again so I suppose if we have to have a rest is perfect for it.

I'm so glad some other new runners are visiting here. The more the merrier!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Just A-Walkin' in the Rain

I believe I've attained some degree of legitimacy as a runner. I, the most painfully unmotivated, non-athlete on the planet, actually ran in the pouring rain tonight. Bully for me.

We did the entire run5/walk5 for 30 minutes, then had our cool-down stroll. I'm so glad we went. It will make the runs on the nice days that much easier. Woo Hoo!

Moral of today's run: The wise runner never consumes three cups of soup within an hour of running.

Friday, May 9, 2008

I Did It!

Yesssssss!! Just got back. I walked five, ran five, walked five, ran five, walked five, ran five! Just three days ago I was doubting that it was even possible. I did better on the third leg than on the first. The second was the hardest. I just can't believe I did it! Now I can't wait to try it again!

Just like last time, Jim kept telling me to slow down and that seems to be the key. It's nice having him along.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Pushing Forward One Minute at a Time

I just got back from walking. Tonight Jim came with. I'm glad he did. He pushed me to keep going during the run portions. I actually made it to 4 minutes tonight. I still walked the majority of the time but interspersed more 1-minute runs throughout. I figure that on Friday I'll be doing the full 5 minutes at a time.

My initial problem is that I have this mental block. I don't feel like I'm running when I'm going pathetically slow. It was good that Jim was there to keep reminding me to slow down, conserve energy, push toward the five minutes and move ----s-l-o-w-l-y! Jeff (#3 son) also reminded me to keep movement fairly limited and relaxed. Maybe these things come naturally to most but I am not self-aware in the least when it comes to athletics. I do all sorts of bonehead things, like running on my toes instead of landing on my heels first. So when I say I'm starting from zero, I mean it. I don't know how to run. I'm learning........and enjoying the process.

I looked at a few brochures from Running Fit. There are races all summer long in every distance. There's a 10-mile run in the middle of August which is exactly the mileage I'll need at that point. It goes right through Hell, I suppose you can guess the name of the race. Should I manage to complete the run (of COURSE I will...I'm a marathoner, remember???) I will get a lame t-shirt with a lame play on the name of the town. I kind of wish there was another race of that distance around here but the next best thing I could find around that weekend was a half-marathon in Chicago. That means staying in a hotel with crowds, eating out a lot, etc. I just want to worry about the running at that point. We'll see.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

It's Been a Few Days....

....but I HAVE been training. I just haven't been posting. Last night I formally started incorporating running into it. The longest I could go was three minutes at a time of running, then back to walking extremely fast. I ran almost 1/4 of the time which isn't as good as I'd like to be doing, but it's still progress for a couch crumb like me! My knees and feet were fine....I just got winded and phlegmy...admittedly gross, but I guess that's part of being winded??? I don't know. This is uncharted territory for me.

We're getting ready to try again tonight. Jim's going, too. He just picked up his running shoes today. By the way, I bought a pair of compression shorts and some lightweight capri sweatpants to run in while it's still a little cooler. Those compression shorts are miracle workers! Very comfortable and they minimize the, um, not-yet-lost derriere fat! I wear the sweat pants over the shorts so it's all very modest and I feel less self-conscious. Then again, anything is a major improvement over my dufus-wear of the first few weeks.

I also got my first pair of running socks! Oh my! Those things are so comfy!

Tomorrow I'll give a rundown of upcoming races that I might enter just to have some short-term accomplishments along the way to the marathon.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Seen While Running

Today's walk was incredible. I did only a bit of running mixed in there but I felt very motivated and kept a great pace. I was less winded than I usually am.

You never know what you're going to see around here. Usually you have to try to avoid the geese near the park because they've all got their goslings and they get downright nasty when you get anywhere close. I saw a wild turkey (the bird, not the bottle) walking around one of the neighborhoods I walked through. Then I saw an antique sewing maching and a bathroom sink both used as part of a frontyard landscape. Interesting.

I was going to go out again tonight because Jim was going to go.....then we both had a plate of spaghetti and changed our minds. Probably a good choice. My knees are a little sore today.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Wednesday's Walk

Jim went with me last night. It was beautiful out! I did a little running throughout my walk but not the 5 on, 5 off. I decided I would work into that just a little run a minute or two at a time.....and NOT feel guilty about it.

I went to Target yesterday and got myself some running gear for the summer. I brought Carrie with me because she is brutally honest (aren't all 6-year-olds). I ended up with a running skort. I loved it. Most running items are so tight and show, excuse me, every dimple in your behind. This was different. The shorts underneath are very spandex-like so they pull it all in, and then there's a nice skirt over it all which isn't ridiculously short. I will more than likely put some self-tanner on so that the neon-like quality of my legs won't shock the early risers of Milford into thinking they're in the middle of a nuclear blast. I must say, it was nice to fit into a medium with no problem and have it not be tight. I guess even though I'm not really losing much, my body is changing somewhat and for that I am thankful.

I've got to say I'm growing accustomed to the exercise and chomping at the bit to keep moving ahead!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

As a newbie fitness person, I think I learn something new every day. It seems there is definitely an optimum time of day for me to get out there and move. The 7:00 to 8:00 am window seems to be the best. Today Jim and I started out at around 8:45 and it kind of messed with our stomachs. We were famished by the time we got back and it made us both a little queasy for the rest of the day. I want to make every exercise experience as positive as possible so I think I'll try to stick to that early morning time.

I'm supposed to start the walk 5 minutes , run 5, repeat, repeat thing this week. I've got to admit that I'm, well, scared. Scared that I won't be able to actually run for 5 minutes. Scared that my aged knees won't be able to take it. Scared that I'm a wimp. Scared that I'll hate it. I guess I just need to try it and see. This whole fitness thing is most assuredly as much mental as it is physical. Tomorrow I'll probably fill you in on one of the more memorable stories from the book and what it did for me.

For now, I best go clean my kitchen or get raking in the garden.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Encouraging Progress

This morning I got up at a decent hour, threw my shoes on and forced myself out the door. That, in itself, is progress seeing that it's Saturday. I drove down to my walk's starting point in the grocery store parking lot, donned my dufus gloves and started I kept the pace up and mixed a bit of running into the first mile and a half. I changed the route up a little bit on the way back and arrived back at my car three or four minutes past when I had planned to be there. I was already a little discouraged because I had started to question if the route I had taken was actually a whole 3 miles. I had to find out.

I jumped in my vehicle (I use that term loosely), reset the trip odometer, and retraced my path. It wasn't 3 miles..........................It was almost 3.5!!!! Yeah, baby! I can't tell you how much I needed to see that I was pushing forward. It just makes it so much more enjoyable when you know it's achieving it's purpose............getting me in better shape! This route, like all of them in this town, is quite hilly, and I try to make myself run most of the inclines. While I hate the hills now, I figure that having trained in a hilly region will really help me come marathon time. The course itself is quite flat, the only 'hills' being the border crossings of the Ambassador Bridge and the tunnel--which runs a mile under water. It should be easy going in but a real pain running out uphill the last half-mile.

I am so excited about this.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Fuzzy Friday

Don't let the lack of posting fool you. I'm still walking and still on target. I really enjoyed my walk yesterday in spite of wearing clothing that was not nearly warm enough. My arms were beet red by the time I got home and my hands felt as if they had been dipped in liquid nitrogen. Alas, I made it, kept my speed up and got it done early in the day.

I'm about to lace up and leave. Today is the first day that the trees look fuzzy and green. It's beautiful! I'm hoping to be able to walk outside but if it starts raining again, I'll pop over to the Y and hop on the treadmill and either walk twice as long, go uphill the whole way, or run half of the time.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I really AM pathetic but it's not stopping me.

I AM walking VERY fast. I am going out faithfully. I am going the distance. In that respect I'm not pathetic. But my goodness, I shouldn't be sore from that.....but I am. Not intensely. I just can't believe how out of shape I am.

If you're younger than me, DON'T WAIT! Get in shape now. I believe you can start at any age, but some are definitely easier than others.

Even though I'm well aware of my patheticness, I'm still excited about doing this and can't wait to see myself progress.

Friday, April 18, 2008


I walked this evening with Jim. We kept a decent pace. Because Jeff had plans and he was watching Carrie for us, we had to be back at a certain time .... so we walked right after a big dinner. That was probably not the best option. Walking in the morning seems a little better. I was just glad we went and that I was able to get all my pre-training in this week. Nothing is hurting. No blisters. I can't wait to be able to run a decent distance but I really want to take this slow to prevent newbie injuries.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Great Month to Get Started

Another beautiful day to walk. I pushed myself, ran most of the hills, trimmed my time a little bit, and felt fairly positive about this pursuit today.

Can't wait to walk again tomorrow. The best part is that for every thirty minutes I walk/run, I get two additional Weight Watcher points to consume. That makes it worthwhile in itself!

Even though what I'm doing right now isn't (or shouldn't be) particularly taxing, I can see that it is definitely needed to condition my body for the real training. My knees are definitely getting worked up to this slowly. I don't feel anything when I'm walking, but when I'm home I'm just shy of a pain sensation when I walk up and down stairs. Other than that, I just feel really good!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Taxified Tuesday

Due to a tax prep-related sleep deficit, I didn't walk this morning. I think I will walk the tax return to the post office, seeing that it is exactly 1.5 miles from my front door and my son has got the car at school until this evening (great planning, huh?). I deserve to be flogged for waiting this long to get the returns started. I will take it out on myself when I walk. Shame, shame, shame.

Tomorrow, after an adequate amount of self-abasement, I hope to return to this blog with sufficient sleep, a smile on my face, and a spring in my step! Wow, that was corny.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Monday Morning

What a beautiful day to be outside! It was a little cold but absolutely gorgeous outside. The walking was still a workout but I enjoyed it. I actually saw a few flowers this morning which is a long overdue sight around here. We actually woke up to snow yesterday morning.

I added to my dufus look this morning, not by design but necessity. I couldn't find my cream-colored gloves so I wore black ones. It was too cold for shorter sleeve shirt and the only long sleeve T I have is an old XXL one that my husband got from the Y for free when we joined. It was so cold that I walked the first mile with a paper cup of hot tea in my black-gloved hand. (don't laugh, I still kept my pace where it should be and walked via the extra hilly route).

I still can't imagine running for 6 hours straight, but now at least I'm starting to think that maybe, just maybe, running for 30 minutes might possibly be something I can probably attain. Sort of. Maybe. Kind of. Hopefully.

189 days to go! It feels good to be committed to this.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Running - Dufus Style

I looked in the mirror this morning before going out to walk. Oh my! I really need to get some sweats. I'm looking like a serious newbie dufus. I've been walking in a pair of lightweight cords with an old 3/4 length sleeve tee on, an Old Navy velour vest with my cell phone in the pouch (making my belly look bigger and misshapen)and some $1-a-pair knit gloves. Nothing wrong with the outfit per se, just a little ridiculous looking for running. I had to laugh. I spent a small fortune on my shoes, but the grand total for the rest of the outfit probably came in just under what I got the laces for. Not that it matters. I just know I looked like a dufus. All I need now are some big 70's-style aviator sunglasses to complete the look.

If you're ever in town, stop and say hello. Just look for the ancient, overweight dufus huffing and puffing while plodding ever-so-slowly over the terrain. For now anyway. Just wait!


Now that I have walked several different courses around Milford, unable to find even one that doesn't have me running uphill BOTH ways, I am going to start a petition to have the town renamed.

This morning's walk was beautiful. A little nippy but nice. The wind was incredibly strong but it felt good.

I didn't quite get out by 'marathon time' because everyone's schedules were a little mixed up today. I did manage to get all of my time and mileage in. I would have liked to go a little faster but that will come with time.

My 6-yr-old did tell me I smelled sweaty, thank you very much. At least it means I'm getting a workout! I have to really get my heart rate up to break a sweat.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


I know it's my second post for the day, but I was just looking back at an old post for a story I linked to and realized the link only led to a picture, not a story. The story is quite good so I wanted to provide the link here today. It's not real long and pretty inspiring for those of us who are a long ways from being 'elite' athletes. Here it is!

Training at Marathon Time

I was having trouble getting any consistency in time of day for my pretraining walk/runs. I decided the only way to do this was to get it out of the way early in the day. I decided that what I need to do is be out the door every morning by 'marathon time', or 7:15 a.m. ---the time of day when the marathon begins. That's what I did this morning and it was wonderful! At that time I've already been up for an hour, made lunches, Jim & Dave have both left, and Jeff is here for Carrie until he has to leave just after I get back. Perfect timing. This morning it was beautiful out. The sound of the birds back in town was just beautiful and I enjoyed the warm sun - nice for a change in these parts. I've felt more like Nanook of the North lately.

Jim and I mapped out a few more routes this weekend so I woudn't get bored with the same few miles over and over. I wanted to map a few plans that I felt comfortable with when I'm by myself....which, in reality, will be most of the time.

I must admit, I actually enjoyed my time this morning. That's a huge milestone for me. The next big milestone for me is being able to run a whole mile. (Hey.....I never claimed to be anything but pathetic when it comes to running). The milestone I'm waiting for the most, though, is a mental one. I can't wait to look at the map of the marathon and say....."Oh Yeah, Baby! I Can DO That!!!!!" I'm not there yet but I'm taking it one day at a time and I'm committed.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Ahhh! What a difference!

Since I tend to be ridiculously frugal when it comes to frivolous purchases, my dearest husband insisted that I spend some serious money and buy decent running shoes. I went into Running Fit, fully expecting to be a little bit of a cheapskate. When I walked in, I told the guy I needed help, I had never run before and I want to get a pair of running shoes. Him and another girl watched my steps for a few minutes then went in the back and pulled out about six pairs of shoes. I tried every one of them on. Usually when I do something like this, without even looking at prices, I generally find that the one thing I like best ends up being least expensive. Ha! Not this time. These blasted shoes were twice what I wanted to spend. I remembered my dearest's words. I remembered that my mom & sisters both have foot troubles. I remembered that I'm 49 and have never owned a pair of shoes worth more than $30. I realized that I've never spent a dime on anything sports-wise for myself. Then..........................I did it. I plunked down that debit card and bought them.

I just took them for a test drive. Oh my. Wow! They were amazingly comfortable. Now, more than ever, I'm really committed. I'm cheaper than I am lazy. I'm not spending that much on running shoes and not using them.

So, I've got a bib#, some shoes that are way out of my league, a supportive husband, and I'm on schedule to run that marathon in October. Wahoo!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Where's Imelda When You Need Her?

Yesterday, being the first of April, I was determined to get my derrierre out the door to run whether I felt like it or not. So I quit my bellyaching and headed out the front door. I got about 5 houses past my own and a big chunk fell off the bottom of my right shoe. I had to turn around and come home. I haven't purchased my running shoes yet and since I'm not Imelda Marcos, I didn't have anything else to run in. So much for momentum.

I will get my shoes this afternoon. My car is going in the shop for repairs so I can't drive it. I'm going to get a rental after I'm done teaching for the day and driving it straight to Running Fit and I'm not coming out of there without shoes.

Jim (dearest husband) registered for the marathon as did Jeff, my third eldest. I'm not counting on Jim having the time to be able to do this but I'm glad he signed up. Jeff's all in. He's got his shoes. He's also got the endurance of.....well.....a marathoner. Always has. He can just pop out the door and run for miles even if it's been months or years since he last ran. Maybe he was switched at birth at the hospital because that trait didn't come from me, that's for sure.

So, I'll check in after I get the shoes. Temps are supposed to be a little higher today so it should be a joy to be outside. We'll see!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Yeah, right! Flirting with Futility

This morning while I was teaching, my mother called me because one of the local radio stations was interviewing a mom in her 40's on running and marathoning in that decade of life. Mom said it was very interesting and I should tune in or find it online. What she failed to tell me is that this runner/mom just happened to be supermodel Kim Alexis. Sorry, Mom. I think taking running/fitness advice from Kim seems silly. I don't think I'd have any trouble pulling this lard butt out to run a marathon if I looked like Kim Alexis to start with. She's a mom, she's in her forties, she has five kids.......but believe me, the similarities end right there.

Something uninspiring about a skinny beautiful model being able to still look that way in her forties. Nothing against Kim. I actually think she's a decent person. It's just that as women, our whole lives we tend to struggle with not being able to look like that no matter what we do or eat. I guess I just don't need to have a sense of futility while preparing for a marathon. I'm more inspired by some obese lady who took up running in her 50's and turned her future around by getting and staying in shape.

So, if you're out there and you've been less than thin or healthy most of your life and turned things inspire me. What is your story? Are you just an average person who decided to do something you never thought you could do? Do tell!