Saturday, January 31, 2009

A Whirlwind Week

The biggest news of the week this week, is I passed my Dissertation Prospectus meeting. What does that mean? Well it means that my doctoral committee members have approved the research investigation I want to do as the final requirement of the PhD. It has been a 7 month process of justifying why this research study is needed and laying out all of the details of how exactly I will do it. So that means another hurdle crossed and onto the next. were the runs this week. Well it felt like they were few and far between thanks to mother nature. I went out Monday morning before the "freezing ice" started and got in a good 4.5 miles around Zink lake. Then the ice came and came and came. Tuesday was a good day to just stay at home and not head out (unless you are the Trail Zombie of course). Wednesday was day 2 of staying in. Although once 10 AM hit, I went out to the fabric store to 1) test the roads and 2) give myself something to do. When I returned home, I got a wonderful message from Susan that some people were going to meet to do the Zink loop at 5:30. I figured what the heck. I was so ready to do something physical and get out of the house and meetin gup with people just made it more fun. There were 4 of us out there, Trail Zombie, My Group leader Michael, Bobby and myself. So, although a small "Bobby's Bunch" we were still there. I got some great photos while out and about. The temperature was great, and the east side of Riverside wasn't too bad. The west side...well they tried to treat it and well was very slick.
If you listened closely you could hear one duck saying to another..."Hey guys we did it!! We swam all the way to Antarctica!" I can see how they could be confused with all of the floating icebergs out on the Arkansas River.
It was great to have the sun shining bright even at 5:30. TZ watches as Deb, I think that's her name, heads off to get her miles in early.

Bobby and TZ stroll across the 1th street bridge. It was like running in place. It was so slushy and took so much energy to even move in.

I took this picture just so everyone could see that there are indeed "White Sand Beaches" in Tulsa, Oklahoma...

If you look closely, you will see TZ, Bobby, and Michael as we finally made it to the 21st street Bridge. You can see that there was still some sun left, and a beautiful sunset at that, around 6:10 PM. It was not the best of conditions to run in, but really was kinda fun.

I missed the Thursday run because I had to drive to Lawrence, KS to meet with my committee on Friday. I was able to get in my 5 miles today while staying in Topeka, and did it in a decent time for myself 1:02:23. It was quite windy and I chose a fairly hilly route, but was so great to be in the sunshine and outdoors without 6 layers of running gear. I look forward to Bobby's Bunch on Monday. I will miss the Tuesday run, due to the class I teach in the evening, and then can't wait for the Thursday and Saturday group runs.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Worthy of a Blog Entry

So, I know I just blogged on Saturday, but today's run deserves its own entry. I woke up this morning feeling like I could sleep all day...even my dog was in that mindset which is rare. I have to admit I have a great job in that I have a lot of flexibility about what times I have to be in the office. Well after taking the dog for a walk around the block, and some encouragement from my mom, I decided it would be better to run this morning than worry about the weather all day. So I put on my running gear, only 1 layer of pants, a long sleeve tech shirt and my new Brooks pull-over (which kept me much warmer than I expected), laced up the shoes (the right way of course) and headed to 21st and Riverside. I decided that if I was going to head out and run I would go ahead and do the 4 miles today for fear that tomorrow it will be too slick, and if it's not I will do the 3. So around the Zink lake loop I went. As I started out North with the wind blowing in my face, I had some doubts of my own sanity, but then rationalized that it was tons better than it was on Saturday so what am I whining for. I crossed the 11th street bridge and was feeling in quite the groove. My legs were feeling good, I was breathing fairly easy for me, good tunes on the ipod playing, and just over all positive thoughts swirling in the brain. Before I knew it I was at the amphitheater...I couldn't believe actually felt like an "easy" two miles. OH...I should mention that I found all of the water fountains frozen, so did wish that I had carried a bottle of water...I was so excited to run across the Pedestrian Bridge, I have no idea why this excited me but it did. Then before I knew it I was there...3.1 miles down and I was feeling like I could keep going without a problem. Usually at the 3 mile marker I am either 1) Done with the run for the day or 2) playing mental tricks with myself to get to the point of being done with the run. Today, however, I was just happy that the run wasn't done and I got to keep going. Isn't that just crazy!!! I do think my Garmin doesn't work quite right going across the Pedestrian Bridge, but...OH...another side fastest mile of the whole run was from mile 2 to 3 with a pace of 12:01. Can you believe that??? I got across the Pedestrian Bridge and north I went, into the wind again. It didn't really bother me at this Garmin chimed at 4 miles and I had completed it in 49:29...I was very excited to hit it under 50 again. I wound up doing a total of 4.5 miles today and felt like I could have done 5 maybe even 6, which really helped my confidence.

Now, of course, I am so grateful I went out this morning. If we do get the super icky weather they are talking about maybe happening...I can hang at home with the dog and drink hot cocoa and still have a sense of accomplishment for the day!

Saturday, January 24, 2009


That's about all I could muster this morning during the run. It really wasn't too bad for the first 2.5 miles as I was headed South, but as soon as I turned around and headed north for the 2nd 2.5 miles, oh my gosh was it cold. I heard on the news this morning that it was 21 degrees air temperature with a windchill of 8. What on earth am I doing out there hitting the pavement? Oh yea, trying to better my health and get prepared for a half marathon in April.

It really wasn't too awful. I did my 5.25 miles in about an hour and seven minutes. Definitely not the speediest of times, but given the fact I have done 5 miles in I don't know how long and the weather conditions, I am just thankful to say I did my mileage today. Overall it was a great week of health and exercise for me. I ran 3 miles Monday evening, 4 miles Tuesday in between teaching 3 classes, worked out with the trainer on Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday, worked out with the trainer Friday, and finished the week out with a 5.25 mile run on Saturday. I am really looking forward to a day of rest and putting together powerpoints.

I will be embarking on a big adventure over the course of the next week as I have to defend the whole idea behind my dissertation on Friday. So I hope that the weather cooperates to get all of the runs in this week to help keep the stress to a minimum.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

What a Beautiful Saturday!!

This morning was a great morning! Although I did have a little trouble getting over "the sleepies". I have given up soda and caffeine in an attempt to win the Biggest Loser competition at TU (could win $500). I am hoping the feeling of being super tired will pass...I can only imagine how Candice feels being pregnant and tired all the time. It's torture to feel like you have no energy. Anyway...

Thursday night was down right frigid. I am not sure what I was thinking heading out in 11 degrees. Well i was thinking "i am going just to say i went and was there". Really the temps weren't that bad once you got going. However, given my wonderful training session focus on thighs, butts, and quads on Wednesday my legs felt like lead. So it took me like 43 minutes to finish my 3 miles, where lately my average has been closer to 38 minutes for 3 miles. I do feel fortunate though that I am physically able to go out there and get 3 miles in regardless of how long it takes me.

This morning we were scheduled for a 4-mile run. I was feeling a little anxious about it given my struggles on Thursday. However, I woke up this morning and was excited to see the sunshine. I trekked over to Runners World and everyone there was buzzed with excitement and ready to hit the path. So I started to feel that internal excitement too about getting the heart rate up and doing something good for my body (which hopefully will also help me win the $$ in the Biggest Loser competition :) ). I so appreciate the Runners World group...the energy and camaraderie just helps so much. I usually run solo, with whatever is playing on my ipod, as even at a slow pace it's difficult for me to have a conversation while running, but love that there are all these other people around me setting and reaching their running goals. It's just great! I was able to complete my 4 miles in 49:35 which was very exciting for me since both of my 4 mile runs last week were over 50 minutes. Go me! I even treated myself to one of the new awesome Black Runners World long sleeve tech shirts and an "appropriate" running jacket for these cooler days.

I will be sad to miss the group run on Tuesday, as I will be teaching my class. Can't wait to see the Monday crowd. This next is supposed to bring some great weather so I am really looking forward to some "comfortable" outside times!! Best to you all!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I will be a marathon finisher...

Dear Sandra,

Congratulations! You are now registered for 2010 Walt Disney World Marathon. Please check the event's official website for updates:

Holy Cow!! I can't believe I've done it. I have registered for a marathon. It is a year away so hopefully shoudl be totally doable. I am so excited (and a tad nervous) about this adventure!! I really had a great run last night with the Monday Night Bunch. I am going to affectionally call the Monday night group "Bobby's Bunch". It was fun to run Zink Lake backwards, not that we ran backwards, but we ran clockwise instead of counterclockwise. Fortunately the change of direction allowed us to hit the boat house just as the TU Crew team was cleaning up and doing some exercises. You can check out the Runners World Blog for some great pics. It was so nice of Bobby, Kathy, Michael, and Ken to slow their pace so that I could hang with the group during the last 1.5 miles.

I will be taking my first Tuesday night off of running in a very very long time to attend the Tulsa vs. Memphis basketball game. I figure I need to have some school spirit. I hope everyone enjoys themselves and has a great time!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Old Stomping Grounds...

Here are some of the ladies I ran with this morning while in Lawrence for a funeral. The one in the bright green grinch hat, Shannon, was my running coach when I first started getting "serious" about running. It was nice to have someone give me a nice route and a group to meet to get my butt up in the morning. I do have to say that the 20 degree temps and single digit windchills were a tad bit unpleasant, but...Overall was a great 4 miler for me. The pace was a tad bit slow for me, but I took TATUR Dave's advice and decided since I was adding the mile this week I would slow myself a tad to make sure I could complete it all. It felt great! I missed the Runners World chatter, but thanks to Ken's great job as a paparazzi I can see it looked like a fun run around the Swan Lake area.

We are heading off to hit the roads of Lawrence...I did my job of bringing up the rear...only because throughout the run I felt that my thighs and butt were numb the entire time...I LOVE THE WINTER (yeah not really...)...

I am looking forward to hitting the pavement next week, pending no ice...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Not the Bad Apple

So far, so good this year. I am really having to work on my patience for those who are trying to be "bad apples". They saying that one bad apple spoils the bunch is so true. Isn't it amazing how much easier it is to complain rather than find the positive. I had my first personal training session of the year today. Truthfully I was very nervous and apprehensive about it, but...I went into it with the "don't be the bad apple" mentality. Do what he says, don't complain about's okay to say it's hard but then follow that up with why I am there....and it turned out okay. My major physical accomplishment today was i did 20 push-ups in a row, twice without taking a breather in between each set of 5 push-ups (girl push-ups mind you, but still). When I had my first session i could barely do 5 push-ups in a set without feeling like death, so quite the feeling of success for me.

Last Saturday I had the most stellar 3 miles of my life I think. I completed it in 35:33. I seriously cannot believe I did it in that time. I have no idea how that happened. Of course I followed it up with a really really bad run (over 45 min for 3.10 miles) on Tuesday. I tried to leave the group Tuesday still feeling positive and upbeat. I had a great first mile, but then I started smelling people's perfume/cologne/deodorant and knew that a migraine was trying to take over, so I would up walking most of the rest of the run after the 1.25 mile point. I made it back and got some excedrin in my system before the full out headache kicked in phew...

My big dilemma now is what to do on Tuesday nights. I have to teach a class on Tuesdays from 5:00-7:30. I have scheduled the class for every other week, so it's only going to impact 6 weeks so I guess it's not a huge deal. I talked to Trainer Andrew today and think on those weeks I will try to add a 2nd personal training day, but I think the only day I could add the training day is Friday and don't know how that will impact the long runs on Saturday...ahhh the decisions.

I was hoping to upload some pictures, but for some reason I am not being allowed so I will save them for another post...

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy 2009

I highly recommend Race Into the New Year for anyone that is looking for something fun an invigorating to do to bring in the New Year! I think it's wonderful how great the turnout was for the run!

I have managed to run 4 days in a row this week. Mon, Tue, Wed, and Thurs. My run this afternoon was atrocious, but I went with the's good to get the miles in. I will enjoy taking a "rest" day tomorrow. I have 3 resolutions for myself in 2009, and thought I'd throw them here on my blog to keep track of..and to be accountable for...

1) I want to run at least 500 miles over the course of the year
2) During 2009 I want to lose at least 25 pounds
3) I want to finish up my Ph.D.

All seem manageable and feasible. I hope everyone had a wonderful first day of 2009. Best of luck during the year!!!