Tuesday, December 30, 2008

2008 Wrap Up

Well today has been a day full of emotions. It started with feeling a little solemn about all of the prep work I need to do to be prepared for teaching in the spring. Then I had a really up moment when I heard from my advisor that my first 2 chapters of my dissertation are almost complete. Then, I got a phone call from K-state stating they wanted to bring me there for an interview. I felt excited I made the short list, then nervous about having to tell my parents (who feel I am being disloyal), to anxious about the possibility of moving, to sad that I did indeed betray Tulsa, to committed to staying here and doing the best I can do, to all kinds of other emotions. The group run tonight could not have been timed better. It was so great to see some familiar faces that I haven't seen in a while: Linda, Sue, Tapos, Jana, etc. I made the decision to try to up my mileage tonight to a whole 3.5 miles. I trekked out, the whole way out in my head I weighed the pros and cons of both k-state and TU. It was funny though cuz the wind was blowing pretty good on the way out, and I barely noticed between the blaring music I had in my head mixed with all the crazy thoughts. By the time I hit the 1.75 point, I felt some peace back in my brain. My running has really been improving. I am feeling a bit more confident and am able to mentally prepare myself to complete longer distances, without feeling the need to walk. It is quite an amazing feeling to win the battle over yourself. I thought it was great to celebrate Debbie's first full mile run! Congrats to Carmen as well, who completed her first full mile (as far as I know) Monday out on Riverside! It's important to remember those feats. I can still vividly remember the first time I ran a mile straight...I was so elated and in such a state of shock.

I am really looking forward to Race into the New Year. I have high hopes for myself for 2009. I will document all of my resolutions on the 1st so as to not jinx myself. I think putting things in writing for others to read and ask about makes it more "official" and motivating. For those of you who won't be joining us tomorrow evening...I wish you a safe, happy and healthy New Year!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

No Catchy Title..

Sharon proudly standing in the rain as she heads out for her first run with the Runners World crew!

I have no creativeness today to come up with a catchy title for the blog. It has been the typical holiday whirlwind. I woke up Christmas morning and decided to do my 3 mile run early. I am cat-sitting at my parents house while they are at my brother's for the holidays. I forgot how hilly it is around their house. I still managed a good time and it was a good run. New surroundings help sometimes I think, although i do like the same route to know "how much further" at certain landmarks too. I was so excited about today's run because I was going to bring my friend Sharon, who I met in the 2nd grade..that's right about 11 years ago...Of course this morning's weather was a little sketchy. Sharon calls at 7:00 and says "I can't run in this", I of course then said "oh it will pass see ya in about 30 minutes". We arrived at Runners World and we waited with great anticipation as the lightning did eventually subside. Off we went. It was a fantastic run. I actually don't mind running in the rain, I find it someone calming. Maybe that's because you don't realize how much you are sweating you just assume it's all rain :). Anyhow. It was a great 3 miles. I am hoping that Sharon and I can crash the Monday at 5:30 group that runs Zink lake area....so great to catch up with friends you have know most of your life!!

I do feel the need to post some great pictures from Christmas...my dog's first Christmas with me. He absolutely thought the idea of tearing paper apart should happen once a month rather than once a year.
It was all about holding with one paw while pulling with the teeth.

My parents' cat, Hannah, was watching Boca wondering if he got something she could "borrow".

Can you spot the cat? Hannah found this great game to play. She buried herself in the paper (see the white paws under the red paper) and Boca would bark...he knew she was in the room but couldn't figure out how to get under the paper. I probably shouldn't share that part...as I am always bragging how smart my dog is...Then Boca and I went to visit my grandmother, she LOVES dogs. Who do you think is having more fun?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I Survived!

Running has never felt so good. Well it wasn't an outstanding run by far, but I was so happy to be able to complete all 3 miles. I really think the best way to cure a bug is to get out and run...well except for last night when I felt like I couldn't breathe even when sitting, there are times when you have to listen to your body.

I am so excited to be bringing a friend with me on Saturday. I met her when I was a whopping 6 years old, and just reconnected with her this past weekend. Her words to me were "i want to be a runner" and I of course told her I had just the way to start! I know all of the Runners World crew will welcome her with lots of encouragement!!

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Another Double Dose of Exercise

I spent this morning with trainer Andrew..he decided to give me a great workout for my last one with him for the year. If you have ever worked out with the Bosu ball, you can appreciate what a challenge the workout was today. Although it was quite challenging I really enjoyed myself this morning. I think I am finally starting to have a little bit of strength which is encouraging. I still don't think I was made to do push-ups, but well it's not quite as excruciating to do them now...

Work today was very low key and productive. Then it was off to the Marvellite Run. What a really neat concept. It was great to run through a new neighborhood. Some of the houses were really decked out. There were a few hills here and there, but nothing too terrible. It was a little chaotic in terms of which way to turn when, but overall it was a great time! The best part was there was pizza and treats afterward. I am not sure what the butterscotch/peanut butter rice krispie things were but if you made them I would love the recipe. Can add it to the "things I shouldn't eat, but love" pile :).

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Fate in Play?

Brrr. I don't do winter very well. Actually I can handle the cold weather okay, but really thrive on sunshine. I am plagued by the whole seasonal affect disorder thing. I am so thankful to be in such a positive place with running. It gets me outside and allows me to absorb some of that Vitamin D.

I was one of 4 people in the office today and was watching out the window, being rather unproductive, wondering what I should do to get in my 3 mile run today. I left the office around 1 this afternoon with my mind thinking I would take my ID and hit the indoor track in the fitness center. I wasn't very excited about my run because it takes 8 laps of the track to get in 1 mile, and I have boredom issues. Well on my drive home the roads really seemed to be okay, so I started thinking that I would suck it up and join the Runners World crew at 5:30 on Riverside. Well, I didn't feel very confident inside with that decision either. Then, low and behold an email from Coach Kathy talking about how to be safe when running on ice and sometimes it's okay to take caution and head indoors. So I took that as a sign that I should head indoors to the track...so with that in mind I took the dog out and he was ready for a walk, so off we went. The roads appeared to have minimal to no ice. So after a quick stroll around the block with the dog, I decided to run outside here. So I hopped on mapmyrun.com and found a mile loop I could do around the neighborhood 3 times and off I went.

I really missed the company while running together, but felt so empowered out there today. I actually had someone stop at the stop sign and rolled down her window and congratulate me on being out. Wasn't that nice? The kicker of today's run is I think it's the fastest 3.13 miles I have done since I've been back running (38:16). The other crazy part about today is at about 4 PM my body "shut down". A good case of a headache, stomachache and just achy in general...which makes me so grateful that I did my run earlier today. So I have taken some Dayquil to lick whatever bug i might be trying to get before it can take control...

I hope to see everyone at the Marvellite Run on Thursday. I think it will be a neat outing.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Finally a Sub-40:00 5K!!!

Today was a great day! Yeah it was windy, but at least it was warm and windy and not below freezing. It was day 1 of half-marathon/marathon training. I appreciate the beginner marathon training schedule that was put on my car windshield...I really think I may go for the whole she-bang....I was able to snap some pictures along the way today.

It was quite warm in the store this morning at 7:30..Yeah Warm!! Yeah no Wind!! I greatly appreciate Kathy & Brian and all of the race leaders doing this training to help those of us with "wild dreams".
I listened to the advice and instructions from Beginning Half-Marathon team leaders, Mike, Michael and Chrissy. Even though we were outside I felt pretty pumped and excited about this new upcoming adventure, the Jingle Bell Run, and the new shoes I was going to buy after the run :).

Ronit and I had time goals for the Jingle Bell 5K Run, so we decided to walk from Runners World to the start of the event, where we met up with Ruth and later Meg. Let the mental preparation for the "race" begin...
Before the race started, I decided we needed a "before" picture taken at the finish line...then I realized c'mon girls..let's take a picture like we usually are...Here's the Result:

Then it was time for the 5K....still quite windy. There seemed to be a really good turnout.

Look at the eagerness and excitement to be out running.....It's so great to run with friends!

The hill at Woodward was a little much for me to run...but i didn't let that stop me from reaching my goal of finishing sub 40:00. According to my Garmin I finished in 39:22, clock time was 39:43 (I think). Then it was a walk back to Runners Word and to find some new shoes...Here were the lucky winners:

I can hardly wait to take them out for a run...maybe tomorrow. Thanks to everyone for the encouragement and good times today.....

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Double Dose of Sweating Today

What a day of health it has been for me....I do not recommend having an hour personal training session and a run on the same day. I didn't think it would be too bad, because my muscles are usually sore from personal training until the next day. Well....I guess I never really accounted for how fatigued the muscles get during the workout and probably don't fully recover until a day later which is when the muscles are all "full strength" again. I guess the positive is...I did complete my hour training session (it was a full day meaning squats and row machine and push ups and single leg bicep curls and all kinds of stuff) and i also completed a 3.1 mile run. I was hoping to do 4 miles tonight so the Jingle Bell Run would seem short, but doing the 3 miles tonight felt like 15 (not that i've ever run 15 but ughh). Well better to get out there and do it then to say "i wish i woulda"....

Okay time for my little soap box note...I know I have mentioned this before but tonight a new person joined the Runner's World crew and felt the need to say she "ONLY" did a 5K. Then another returner was introduced and kinda joked about training for a 5K. Well...some of us find the 5K a major accomplishment. I understand many people with the group enjoy the mega/ultra long distances and that's wonderful, I envy your endurance and ability. However, I still remember the first time I ran a mile strength...I know with the tue/thur group I would never feel comfortable sharing such a "petty" distance achievement. The joy of running is it's individuality and ability to have shared experiences with others, so no comparisons should be made...so I just want to say that running any distance even a mile should be celebrated and not belittled....

Okay enough of that. I am so excited for the Jingle Bell Run. I really want a sub 40 time so if you see me out there encourage me to move a little quicker....:)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Bloom Where you are Planted

All I can say in my blog tonight is I am so proud of myself for getting my butt outside yesterday in unbelievable winds to do a 2.7 mile outing and tonight in unbelievable wind and an 18 degree windchill to do a 3.1 mile outing. I was out doing a residency school year visit in Pawnee with one of my former students from KU and was taking in the cold air and drizzle and just thinking I can't possibly go for a run tonight. Well 4:30 hit and my doggie wanted to go out to do his thing. Now you may think doing his thing involves restroom behavior...oh no..my dog likes to head out to run circles around the front yard as fast and as many as he can before he gets dizzy. This sounds crazy..but I thought..if my dog can enjoy running mad in this weather so can I...so I changed clothes and off to Riverside I went. Now some might perceive me as "anti-social", although I do have some social anxiety, I decided to walk the bears early just to not let myself get to cold from standing. So when I finished walking the bears it was time to start running..and off I went. It was a slow run, but today I am not worried about time, I am just so proud I went out and ran....

Congratulations to all of you other crazy Runners World crew who were out there braving the conditions as well....We have all been somehow planted here in good ol' OK with some crazy weather...and I think it's great there are so many trying to help their health and running bloom...

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Nice December Morning

I decided to forego the group run this morning and venture out on my own. It was the 7AM call time that I wanted to avoid, I felt the need to "sleep in" which means I didn't get up til 7:30. So I headed out to 31st and Riverside and decided to do the 4.5 mile Zink loop. Well the loop itself is only like 4.3 miles so I started to loop again so I could get to 4.5...I like nice round numbers. It was really quite peaceful out. I took the camera with me to try to capture some great Tulsa shots. Here's what came out:

This is me before starting trying to give my "I'm serious about this" look. This is above Riverside on the great pedestrian bridge that crosses the road.
I really like this picture for the photography aspects. I love the sun reflection and the spacing of the buildings. I like the date on my pictures but wish I would have removed that feature for this shot. I like that it's difficult to tell if it's taken at Sunrise or Sunset....
This would be a photo (had i removed the date feature) that I would totally enter into a competition. I saw this just after the wooden bridge on the west side of the path and found the clarity of the mirror image of the bridge just breathtaking. Then you add in the hint of sunlight in the picture and moments like this are just few and far between. I was glad to be out for a jog this morning to be able to observe this sight and have the camera to capture it for others.

This is me, grinning and bearing a weak run from mile 2.5 to 3.5, but ready to trek on to complete the last mile. On the positive side, I was feeling quite good about my running, that I felt that I was able to complete 2 miles with relative ease. It is important, as Mike and I discussed Thursday evening, to note the "cans" or running as often if not more so than the "can'ts".

Lastly, I stopped to grap this shot of downtown from the west side of the pedestrian bridge. Again mhy favorite aspect is the clarity of the refelection of the buildings. I also could go into a lot of depth about my interpretation of the symbolism of this tree that stands alone in the foreground, but I will refrain. It is the poet/scrapbooker/photographer in me that finds this photo very thought provoking and reflective. I hope that you will find it enjoyable and intriguing as well.

Overall, it was an average run for me. I finished the 4.5 miles in about 58 minutes. My average pace was 13:01/mile, which although slow...is indeed close to my overall average and abilitiy, at least for now....

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Whee 4 miles!! (well..3.92)

I had a wonderful run tonight. I was a bit nervous given the soreness of my quads from all the lovely wall balls and squats yesterday. I headed out with Ruth and Mike and cruised right along. I was even able to partake in conversation fairly easily during the first mile and a half. I was amazed. When I got to the playground (my normal 3 mile turnaround), I made the decision to do 4 miles tonight. I felt good, I felt strong, and my spirits were high. Mike was kind enough to accompany me on my journey. It was very nice to have companionship and company along the route. I lose sight of that from time to time. I thought i would share my mile splits from tonight, because I really felt like I did well. Mile 1: 12:51, Mile 2: 12:27, Mile 3: 13:16, Mile 4 (well .92 miles) 11:35. I would like to have an average closer to a 12/12:20, but all with due time and consistency. Yeah for completing a 4-miler not on a Saturday, and in the chilly weather!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

When you can start the day with "Wall Balls"....

it's a good day? At least that's what trainer Andrew told me today as I whimpered (literally) through them. If you aren't familiar with "wall balls" and you would like to add something new to your workout this is what you do...First find a ball (you will want it cushioned) that weighs between 15-20 pounds. Second find a wall that can handle being "tapped" by a 15-20 pound ball. Then hold the ball just under your neck with both hands on either side as if you were going to pass the ball. Do a full squat...yes full squat butt to the toilet (my personal mantra for getting in a full squat) then as you stand push the ball up so that you through it and it taps the wall. I guess I should have mentioned that you should put your toes somewhere between 6-12 inches from the wall a little more than shoulder width apart and face the wall. Do the squat/throw routine in reps of 15. I laugh at that because i do sets of 5 with an allowance of 5 deep breaths in between cuz i'm a weenie. Then when you finish the Wall Balls put the ball on the ground turn your body to face the opposite direction and do squats...the squat only counts if your butt touches the ball. Do 15 of these. Then run 1/2 mile. Repeat the sequence 3 times. That was my workout this morning..man was it tough! Of course I had to do ab exercises after that, but my legs were thankful for the rest :).

Back to running...Last night's run was decent. I felt pretty good about it overall. I was happy to be out doing something as I was feeling kinda crummy when I arrived. It is always nice to see smiling/laughing/chipper people (even if they are faking it). It was only a 3-miler for me, but I finished in under 40 minutes which is always my goal for 3 miles. I am excited about the upcoming Jingle Bell Run and really hope that I can make it my first 5K in under 40 minutes. I am also pumped for the half marathon/marathon training. I am in a big quandary as to what to train for, the half or the full. I went in to it thinking training for the half, but then I think it's 4 whole months away, possibly I could complete the full. I think I will just start with getting the half marathon schedule and see how it goes during the first several weeks. If anyone has any thoughts, ideas, or opinions about what to train for I am all ears!!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving Wrap-Up

Wow..it's amazing how quick a week can go by. I was very excited Thanksgiving morning to do the run on Riverside. I decided to play "Ken In Training". So here are some of the photos of the event on Thursday.

Here, some of the Runners World crew gathers to discuss the nice warm weather (okay so it was a little chilly, but bright and sunny day for a run!!

So the sun angle was awful here...but this is the crowd anxiously awaiting the start. If you look through all the people, you might possible see Mayor Kathy Taylor. All I remember is she was wearing blue (GO JAYHAWKS!!!)

I was sooo very excited to see Linda and Sue there. I am hoping they will sign up to train for the April Marathon/half-marathon. Both are such light-hearted and good-natured people. Yeah Them!!

I took this while trotting along, so I am very excited that it's not just a giant blur. This was taken on Riverside as the upper and lower routes merged heading toward the 23rd street bridge. There was a lot of "jockeying" for position still at this point...I felt like a superstar to still be in a crowd :).

Finally, the good ol' Trail Zombie passes me, but I had to take the moment to demonstrate my new photo taking abilities.

Another "while running" photo...much more blurred, but given that it was around mile 3, I was glad to be able to 1) be moving, and 2) have enough mental capacity to take the pic....to get Roman and I think he said his nephew. It's interesting though. At this point, Roman asks "How's your run?" In the moment "ughh" is all I could respond. Really though, in the big scheme of it all I did the 4.25 in 54:59 (yup under 55) so for me that is really a decent run. I had just lost the crowd and felt pretty isolated when I crossed paths with him. Just reinforces that running is all about yourself.

As I crossed the bridge over Riverside, I thought it was great to see so many people hanging around and shooting the bridge and sharing thanks with each other after the run. What a great event and beautiful day for a run.

Well I was going to post some of my pictures from the rest of Thanksgiving weekend, but think I will wait for another day. I do feel the need to post this last one though. This is my car in Pittsburg, KS this morning (11/30/08).

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Ode to the Mediocre Run

It's so much easier to sit down and reflect on the "good" or invigorating runs, rather than the mediocre runs. I don't dare call them bad, because not showing up would be considered a bad run to me. It was great to see everyone tonight after being out of town for the last 2 runs. I was excited to show up tonight too to hear the buzz about the run thanksgiving morning. I need to do that run just to be aware of what I put in my mouth. I eat so much better on workout days because I don't want to put in all that effort and blow it for a couple bites of food. I started off feeling pretty good for about the first mile tonight. Then the lovely leg workout with the trainer from yesterday started to kick in. My quads, hamstrings, thighs, and gluts felt like junk around 1 1/2 miles. So felt like I was lifting lead on the way back to the car. I know in the long run the training helps tons with my running. I think it has improved my posture, therefore breathing, tremendously while running. Oh well...every run can't be stellar. I almost didn't write about tonight's run, but I think it's important to log those runs that aren't so great as well as the ones that make you feel like a superstar. I do thank all of you fellow runners out there with smiles on your faces...helps to keep the spirits up. Hope to see many of you Thursday morning! For those of you I don't...Happy Thanksgiving!!! Gobble Gobble!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Craving to Run

Yup that's right ladies and gentleman, I got home from Chicago yesterday and all I wanted to do first thing this morning was go for a run. I packed my running clothes and took them to Chicago but forgot my running shoes, and didn't think my dress shoes would do the trick. So this morning I put on my gear and headed out to Lafortune, a nice 3 mile loop that would keep me from shortening my desired distance of 3 miles. I really need to follow Ken's behavior and carry a camera with me when I run. About 1/4 mile into the run I crossed paths with Meg...I was so glad to see that she was feeling better and up for a run. Then at about the 2 mile marker, Hayley went flying by in the other direction. Seeing familiar faces along the path kept me putting one foot in front of the other. It was a slow run for me today. My brain was pumped for it in the beginning, my body not so much. At the 2 mile marker my body was pumped for the run, but my brain was checking. Time to get the body and brain back on the same page.

I thought I would post a couple of my fun and funny pictures from the convention in Chicago.

This is a photo of my colleagues from U. of Kansas (Julie & Sandy). We went to a restaurant called McCormicks Seafood. Seeing as how I am allergic to seafood I can tell you the apple salad was quite yummy.

This was one of our silly moments in the hoisery section of Macy's on State Street. We decided to play as if we were teenagers who killed time by taking photos of themselves.

These are my former graduate students and doctoral mentor and myself just before our presentation at the conference. Everyone did a phenomenal job representing the Univeristy of Kansas and ACTS project.

This truly was a highlight for me. Julie Andrews received the Annie Glenn award. In 1997, she underwent vocal cord surgery and had major scarring that prohibits her from singing. In person her voice disorder is quite obvious. Still, she is an amazing speaker. So poised and articulate. It was great to see her.

I look forward to seeing everyone Tuesday. Although, I will be signing up for the April 1/2 marathon training Monday evening. I was hoping to run the Lawrence (KS) half, but they have cancelled it due to the economy. They were unable to get enough sponsorship. So looks like I will be heading to OKC!!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

If you can't laugh at yourself what can you laugh at??

Last night wasn't as chilly as I expected which is a good thing. I made the decision to do a 2-miler, but try to continue to push myself with speed, since I was going to go "light" on distance. I did well for myself. I finished with an average pace of 12:20/mile. I would like to continue to see that pace decrease to be closer to 12 over 3-4 miles. But...the highlight of yesterday was receiving pictures of myself on Sunday's Rt 66 quarter run from Ken. Man, do I need to work on my posture or what? I talked to my trainer about it..and he was like "duh Sandra, why do you think we are doing all these core muscle exercises?" Okay, so those weren't his exact words, but I told him I thought we were doing it because it was a fun form of torture. So please enjoy a few laughs at these pictures as I know I did:

This is me doing the smile on command. Thanks Kathy!!

This is me knowing the picture is coming, but I also know I get the chills after a run, so putting the jacket back on before the wind takes hold. I know very appealing!! HAHA!

Have a Great Thursday run everyone. I will be in Chicago learning what cold and windy is really like....

See you next Tuesday!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Where's Waldo? I mean Bobby..

The runners world crew seemed absent in the photos online...but I found this one. Can you spot the Runners World guys????

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Quarter Marathon...CHECK

I did it. I finished the quarter marathon today. This medal is mine all mine. I have to say it was a really great run for me today. I had the goal of finishing in under 1:30. I am so proud of myself that I finished in under 1:25 (at least according to my Garmin, can't wait to see the "official" result time). I have to say that I am very proud of all the Runners World gang. Everyone looked so great, and it was so great to have the group cohesion at the start of the race. Although it was chilly, I greatly enjoyed the laughter and laidbackness of all the Runners World crew in the make-shift Runners World tent. This has to be one of my first "event" runs that I finished feeling very positive and upbeat.

Now what? Well...I plan on keeping it at. I have my eye on the Lawrence, KS half marathon on April 19th. I need to stay in my positive running place and just keep at running. I do think my personal training is paying off as well, as it is helping with my posture which is helping me to breathe better (at least tha tis my thought process at this moment). I do hope everyone else had an enjoyable run, and has taken part of the day today to revel in the accomplishments that we all achieved.

Thank you to the whole Runners World crew for the positive atmosphere and support!! I look forward to meeting the "new" training group for the 1/2 marathon in April. I also look forward to seeing everyone's fun pictures from the day.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Nothing to do with Running...Celebrating my dog being 1 year old

Okay...so today is my doggie's 1 year birthday and he looked so cute chewing on his new stick I had to post the pictures
This is a picture of him about a month ago just hanging out in the front yard....he loves to be outside!!

This is him celebrating his birthday in style. All wrapped up in my nice fleece blanket without a care in the world other than enjoying chewing on his stick.

I just had to post one more, cuz I think he's absolutely adorable.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I Taught Mike Something.....

Now if only I could remember what it was, so I could put it on here. How funny is that. I can even remember where the moment occurred..it was past the wooden bridge but before the very large tree on the right. Anyway...if I catch up with Mike on Sunday maybe I will ask him to remind me what it was that I taught him tonight.

Tonight's run...well I started and finished. Considering the grueling workout I had with the trainer yesterday that alone is an accomplishment. During my training session I reminded Andrew, the trainer, that I had the "big run" on Sunday. He said eh the workout today shouldn't affect that. So I was expecting a workout that was heavy on arm and abs...OH foolish foolish me....it was all about squats (of course there were the obligatory push ups, but)...C"MON!!! So today has been a day of drinking very little to avoid excess trips to the bathroom as squatting is one of the most difficult things to do. I have to say that I have not felt my inner thigh muscles in a while and I definitely know they are present. So starting out on the run tonight...i felt like a snail, but was thankful I was able to move forward and not necessarily in reverse.

So...Sunday is right around the corner. Signing up for the quarter marathon on a whim may have been a very wise decision. I am soo stoked about the accomplishment I am soon to achieve. I wish everyone running this weekend (whether in an event or not) a great run and a good time within your own head. Running to me is a great way of meditating :).

Remember everyone....happy feet :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Stupid Garmin...okay stupid garmin user

Well at least my ability to correctly operate (meaning hit start) my Garmin happened tonight and not during some event that I really wanted to post my "actual" time. Was a decent run for me tonight. I have been making myself do the lovely strength exercises on the Wii Fit (which i have absolutely no strength). Well I spent some time doing the lunges and well let's just say my legs are feeling it. So...i was a little concerned how the run would go, but seemed to go okay. I had a little more awareness of my achilles and calves today than usual, but I figure that's just my body's response to my quads feeling a bit tender. Tomorrow is Wednesday, which means i have a trainer appointment at 7AM...hope he goes easy on me, so I can complete the quarter marathon on Sunday.

I hate that I feel the need to say "I'm only doing the quarter"...that's just not right. I know there are the supercools doing the full marathon and I truly sit in awe of anyone that can complete 26.2 miles at one time. I hope to maybe work up to that some day, but don't want to minimize my own accomplishment of completing 6.55 miles at one time. It will be mighty chilly and anyoone that is out there on Sunday is accomplishing something!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

6 Whole Miles

What a beautiful morning for a run!! Okay, so I could have done without the wind gusts out of the North, but...overall was a great outing for me. I have start by saying thanks to TATUR Dave and Mike for chit chatting with me making the miles just quickly tick by. The first mile was spent primarily with Dave learning and trying to grasp his game plan for his pacing with Kathy later in the day. His response of "i'll only be pacing her for like 30 miles" just made me laugh. Gosh what a slacker...ONLY 30 miles....My response of course was "how on earth do you do that?" It was comforting to hear the response of "I'm not really sure". That's exactly how I felt when my trusty Garmin beeped at the 6 mile marker. I'm not really sure how I did that distance today. Not only did I do the distance, thanks to Mike hanging with me for the first 4 miles (I walked from 4-5) I finished with an average pace of 13:12/mile. I was elated!!! Seriously. My legs feel a little like jelly, but so incredibly awesome. I'm ready to face the 1/4 maraton head on next Sunday.

I do have to send big time kudos out to SONYA. I am not really sure she understands how much she inspires me. She is always in a great mood with an upbeat spirit. I think she also has to be one of the most consistent people out there pounding the pavement. I think she's AWESOME!! and can't wait to hear about her marathon finish!!

I wish a great day and weekend to everyone. Hope the pavement is passing quickly for Ken and Kathy and anyone else out there on the 100 miler...

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Today has been quite the whirlwind of activity for me. I will skip all of the details and just state that I had a decent run tonight (thanks Mike!!). I actually ran my 3.2 miles at an average pace of 12:20. Can't wait til that is my norm and not a major accomplishment :)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I was Tagged by Bobby

Wow new to blogging and already tagged...6th folder 6th picture....This is a picture of my nephew, Jason, on Aug 1, 2006. His birthday is June 28th, 2006. I was fortunate enough to get to visit him in Florida and help out my bro and sis-in-law with their 2 daughters, Nicole and Megan.

It is great to have my only brother live in Florida and be on good terms so that I can get away to Florida every now and again. I love his kids too...they are awesome and so incredibly smart!! I hope to get to spend some time with them all over Christmas Break! I also would like to train for the Kennedy Space Center 1/2 marathon that takes place the Saturday after Thanksgiving every year, next year. The finish line is on the launch pad...how cool would that be?

So now I am supposed to tag someone....I am going to pick an unsuspecting person from the RunnersWorld blog, as I know very few people...so......the lucky winner is......

Chrissy...post your 6th picture from your 6th folder and tell us all about it....

Personal Training Update

I thank TU for having such a great deal on personal training. I almost missed my 7 AM session this morning. Fortunately my dog makes a great alarm clock and knows my schedule better than I do. Woke up at 6:25 with just enough time to take the dog outside for his morning jaunt around the yard and put on the good ol' workout clothes. Then off to the TU gym. It's amazing..students can use this great facility for FREE and there were only 2 people there. Anyway...I digress...get to the gym this morning and there's the trainer, Andrew, all smiles and ready to kick my butt. We start of with some loosening up moves...which actually feel pretty good. Then it's off to do 2 laps around the track for a warm-up. I am not sure I would be able to do more than 4 laps around the track (takes 8 for a mile) as it was quite repetitive and with very few people to "people watch" I get stuck in the thoughts in my head. Nice short run finished...off to the "room of death" okay not really but sure does feel that way at times.

First stop, row machine. I do have to admit that I find the row machine quite therapeutic. Well that is until I am given a distance and a time limit, but still...I dig it. Then out comes the piece of torture. I am not how many people have died on a Bosu Ball, but I thought I was going to this morning. I had been on a bosu ball before when you stand on the ball part while doing things like bicep curls. But to my surprise, Andrew flipped it over I had to stand on the black flat part and do squats. I have never had my legs shake so bad in my life!!! no exaggeration. Of course I did some yelping (sorry to anyone else who might have been in the gym) but got through my 15 squats. Then it was on to my favorite...push-ups. I hate push-ups...it is definitely funny though to just sit there in the "ready"position and see the sweat beads falling off my head. I have to envision that I am stranded in the desert and those sweat beads are the only form of water I can get...then dip down (the push-up part) and think how gross it is and push away. I know sick the head games i play huh. It is after all 80% mental. Andrew then guided me through several more exercises before getting to do everything again.

I have been warned that my legs may be a bit tired/sore tomorrow for the run with the group, but you know as Andrew says "pain is weakness leaving the body", so I will be there with a grin.

Let the adventure to good health continue...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Buellar? Buellar?

I definitely felt like the teacher in Ferris Buellar's Day Off tonight on the run. I know that when we started at 5:30 there were at least 20 people around me. As I hit the 1/2 mile marker there was Ruth, Marvin, Boomer, and myself. Then at the 1 1/2 mile marker there was Ruth and myself. It was nice and dark so it was hard to tell if there were others among us. It is funny though as we were trotting along in the darkness, I made the comment that it was soothing running in the dark in that the social pressures lessened. I never realized until that moment how self-conscious I feel while running. Something I definitely need to get over.

Well it seems I have mud back on the bottom of my shoes, my pace was back to snail's pace. Of course tonight I think I will blame the darkness and my cautious steps...but I really need to find a way to make myself go a little bit faster. If anyone wants to volunteer to help push me to that consistent 12 minute mile I promise not to whine too much....

It was great to hit the pavement tonight. Another great November evening, don't know how many more mild evenings we'll be fortunate to have. It's off to meet with the personal trainer tomorrow...I am already dreading the push-ups.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Springlike November Day

Wow! Is it really November 3rd? It feels like early May. I decided to lace up the ol' running shoes this morning before heading out to work. I used to be a die hard morning runner, but since moving to Tulsa have shifted to more of an evening runner. It felt good to check out the neighborhood this morning, the weather was so cooperative. I do have to say I think I was moving at a snails pace, but at least I was moving.

The exciting news of the day today is my new adventure on the Wii fit. I have been hearing all these great things about the wii fit. And although, Guitar hero is a great workout for for the fingers and wrists and vocal cords, it doesn't help so much with the overall toning of the body. So...I plugged in the balance board and off I went. It was quite fun and entertaining. We'll see how the overall progress goes, but it was nice to do something different.

Tomorrow I will meet with the RunnersWorld crew and will hopefully trot along Riverside and get my miles in before it gets too dark. Time to start dusting off the good ol' headlamp :)

Friday, October 31, 2008

New Territory

Well I was frantically beckoned up to KU to meet with my mentor about my dissertation this week. It seems that I wasn't being thorough enough. What does that mean? Well that my next several weekends will be spent staring at fun and exciting journal articles and this lovely screen...ughh.. But, after my meeting yesterday and my frantic runarounds KU to try to get back on the motivation train for this lovely finish line to PhD land (i swear it's worse than any thought of ever doing a marathon) I decided to trek out into unknown land this morning for a light jog. I have been working out with a trainer, and well let's just say I don't think I have ever used any muscles in my body EVER. So my legs and arms and back were quite sore for the rigorous workout Wednesday morning, but I figured warm up the muscles they'll feel better... My 3 1/4 mile jaunt this morning was quite slow (i swear i could only get out about a 4" stride), but it was fun to run on streets I didn't really know where they went or if there were hills or not. Once i got back to the place I am staying I looked at the trusty Garmin and had indeed completed over 3 miles...I was in shock. Overall a great way to start the day!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Where to begin??

Well I am new to the blogging, but have greatly enjoyed reading the RunnersWorld blog and figure I should start documenting my stories and adventures.

What is my story? Well, I started running in January 2006 after losing 50 pounds and recognizing that I wanted to do something healthy to honor that. I "ran" my first 5K in April 2006. I believe my finishing time was around 52 minutes. I was so elated to finish. It was such a huge accomplish for me. I have never been athletic, played softball when I was 6 & 7 years old, but after that I became much more of the musician. I played the piano through elementary school and then played the flute throughout junior high and high school. So..here I am in my 30s deciding that I need to find my inner athlete. I enjoyed the atmosphere and acceptance of the running community when I did my first 5K, and the encouragement of the super-speedies really motivated to keep at it. So I kinda trotted along, did some training on the treadmill and kind meandered my way. After completing a 5K in March 2007, I met up with some women who were going to put on a women's running camp during the summer months at 5:45 in the morning, 3 days a week. I figured why not...had to do something to change it up...plus although running should be fairly simple one foot in front of the other...I couldn't get over the threshold.
So in June 2007, i met some phenomenal ladies, who I still adore and did my first 5K in July 2007 in sub-40. I was so excited, but thought I was going to puke at the same time. Then a bunch of us decided to do the Kansas City Zoo Run in September 2007, which is a 4 mile run. In the training for the zoo run, I was talked in to attempting the Kansas City half marathon in October. The KC Zoo run is a total blast, I recommend it for anyone in the KC area during September. Continued my training with my group of females for the KC half and did indeed complete the course. The week following the KC half I did the Turkey Trot a 5K on a cross country course. I wound up really injuring my right achilles, my whole ankle stayed swollen for 10 weeks.

In March 2008, I decide to try to get back on the horse so to speak. It has been quite a challenge for me to lace up the shoes again, both physically and mentally. I have really struggled to get in a good place mentally to accomplish the running feats I have planned in my head. After my move to Tulsa in July 2008, i sucked it up one Tuesday evening and decided to show up to the RunnersWorld group and have been consistently running 3 days a week since.

So...what now?? Keep on running or jogging as the case may be. I have finally hit that stride where I have some self-confidence that I can indeed complete the miles. Now it's time for me to be consistent and be confident.