Saturday, March 16, 2019

Week 9: Training for the Rockin K Trail Marathon

This is me enjoying some sweet tea sitting on my parent's back deck
Ah, peak week, how are ya?  I am currently in TN visiting my mom and mom in law letting little red soak up the fun that is all things grandma and grammy. That means some Tennessee running! A little bit of pavement, a little bit of new to me trail, and lots of humidity.

Monday:  Cross fit fun.  I decided last time I was in Tennessee that I would just do my WOD and strength at my mom's gym.  They had bumper plates and all the fun things I needed to get it done.  The only problem, not exactly all the things I use, but good enough.  The jump rope was too long, I had to go to a different section of the gym for pull ups, and no rings I could reach, but I made it work.  Strength was back squats with my new max and the WOD was totally modified to get what I needed.  I had to cut it short too, but I got some sort of WOD in and later when we were at the playground and I did some knees up on the monkey bars.

Tuesday:  7 miles. I actually did 7.8 to try and have to run less the next day, since we would be with Tony's mom again in Martin (Grandma and Pops).  I got to pound more pavement and more hills.  Hopefully these hills will help, even if it is pavement.  I am excited, I actually have a watch tan!!!!!   I had to laugh though.  We run over a bridge and there is always tons of broken glass on the sidewalk.  We hit a section that was pure broken glass, so I just picked Stella up and started running with her in my arms.  A couple pulled over because they thought Stella was hurt.  Glad that Cross fit has helped me be able to run carrying Stella, and glad that people in this world still care :)

Wednesday: Back to martin to see Grandma and 6.2 miles.  Since I have a new loop that I like in Martin, I was pretty excited.  I figured the loose dogs would all be up since everyone would be at work.  WRONG.  I had two different sets come after Stella, and i and one that I thought was NOT going to back down.  I got some good hills in and the humidity was lower.  Post running we headed to the Discovery Park in Union City.  If you have never heard of this place, it is amazing!  Luck was in our favor because they had a Lego exhibit which consisted of some awesome Lego creations, but more importantly, you could build your own, and that is what we did the majority of the day!

Thursday:  Rest day.  Boy, did I need it. Peak week is no joke!  Also, I had promised little red some trampoline jumping time at Sky Zone, and some skating time at Magic Wheels.  We had so much fun and I thankfully didn't get hurt falling:) Andrew still prefers the trainer for skating, but that is okay.  We don't go enough so if he needs to use them for now, we will do whatever to make him have fun.

We also did some yard work as the weather turned out to be beautiful.  This was what I did as a kid, pick up sticks and drive the lawnmower.  Glad that Andrew is getting a little taste of what I was expected to do as one of my many chores growing up.  

Friday:  20 miler.  As luck would have it, one of my running buddies was in Memphis for the week/weekend and we met up with another lady that we had met on the running with Dogs FB page.  I had hoped to get the majority of my long run on the trails, but ended up with 15.5.  It was TOUGH.  The trail was leaf covered and  stick covered, and one jumped up and bit me pretty hard. Pretty much did a superman sprawl face first on the trail.  I don't think I have ever fell face first so that was a first!

The trails were marked a little wonky, so we had to back track a few times, but we got a big loop of around 9 miles, a smaller loop of 3.14 miles, and then I did another loop for about 3ish.  I decided since both of the other ladies had headed out that the best thing for me was to head home and do the rest of the run near family.  Running on new to me trails with no cell phone service by myself was a little creepy.  

There was a lot of power hiking.  I needed this so badly,, because I haven't done many of my long runs lately on technical trail.  I was able to maintain about a 3 mph speed, which is really, really good for me on technical trail with some good elevation gain.  

I am so blessed to have trail sisters.  These women are amazing!

Saturday:  Short run on tired tired legs.  I wanted pancake flat and I got it. We went to a park that has about a mile around paved track and I didn't mind doing loops as long as it was flat.  Andrew and grammy played on the playground while I ran.  Then mom and I went to a mom/daughter lunch while Grand daddy and Andrew went to subway to share a sandwich.  We convened and all headed to Jackson's new brewery, Hub City Brewery. 

They didn't do flights, but they did tasters.  I loved the Stout they did for St. Patrick's day and got a growler to take back to KS.  They also had bowling and a huge area with several corn hole stations.

Even with her torn rotator's cuff on her throwing arm, she threw a mean game of corn hole!

This place is amazing!  It was family friendly and had GREAT beer.  My tab was quite a bit high, but it was worth it!

Sunday:  Driving day!  I am going to be optimistic and say that the drive was great and we had no issues.  I hope I am not jinxing myself by posting this early, but who knows when we will get home. Our drive down was amazing so here is to hoping the drive back is the same.  Thank you Tennessee and Grammy, Pops, Grand daddy, and Grandma for hosting us and giving Andrew lots of love!  Till next year!

Thank you to Kim at Running on the Fly and Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner for hosting the Weekly Run Down link up!  Check out the amazing blogs that are part of it and find a new one to love!  I know I have!

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Week 8: Training for the Rocking K Marathon

this was from a couple of years ago. Let's hope stella and I don't have to swim this year!
One more cut back week and then my last big running week before taper.  As I said last time, I am really digging this plan even though it isn't technically coach approved or scientific. I have tried to research things like cut back week volumes and taper week lengths to try and fit this plan to those tenants.  5 more weeks till race day and I am super excited!  This is also another travel week.  Andrew's spring break officially starts the 11-15th, but the school system schedules parent teacher conferences the week before and have the kids totally out Thursday and Friday meaning we can hit the road bright and early Thursday morning.

Monday:  This is usually my Cross Fit day, but since we ended our back squat/dead lift series, this week was kind of random and not really what I needed for running.  I talked to my coach and we decided that Tuesday's work out of tempo back squats would probably be the best.  I was fine with moving things, Monday was going to be one of those crazy days anyway.  School was on a 2 hour delay with the record cold, I had a dentist appointment, and then we had music later.  I had volunteered to start taking a friend's kiddo (who goes to a different school than andrew) to the same music class as Andrew, and I was a little nervous for the logistics of the first time.  Every school has such different pick up and drop off rules around here and they are all so technical! Anyway, we made it through, got everyone picked up and delivered, no problems.  Plus, I got a nice/painful 1.5 hour massage from Miss Trina at Rising Phoenix.  Since my knee is still not 100%, not hurting really just not being right, she worked on my leg to try and help with that.

Tuesday:  Cross Fit/Run. Started out the morning bright and early heading to the gym.  We are between programming, so this week is kind of willy nilly and this work out seemed like the best for me and my running.  For the strength portion, we did back squats to a tempo of 5 seconds on the way down, 3 seconds in the bottom, and then 1 second up, repeat for four sets.  I tried to start at a doable weight and then work my way up.  The WOD was 5 muscle ups, 10 thrusters and 20 box jumps.  I am still not doing these exact, still working scaled and modified versions, so I did 5 ring rows, 10 thrusters with just the bar, and 20 box step ups. It wasn't the hardest WOD we have done, but I was sweating and breathing hard at the end for sure.

some nights a beer and bed are just what you need

I didn't have time to run post getting the kiddo to school because as part of the PTO, we do popcorn days where we pop popcorn for the entire school (around 440 people total) and post that I had to get to work.  I figured no problem, I would run post work.  Well, I honestly was worn out post work, so after eating an early dinner, we watched some TV, and went to bed early.  I knew I could add a run somewhere else and it would be fine.  

Wednesday:  Easy 6.  This run started out with very sore and tired legs and just didn't get much better than that.

At least she was happy.  It was nice to be outside and on the roads, even with a little bit of snow still on some of my route.  I do have to tell a funny story.  If you aren't into TMI skip the rest of this paragraph.  Okay, you have been warned :)   I have runs where I just have to pee multiple times. I have secret ditches or spots that I can get to and be sort of hidden.  It's worse at this time of year because of course the crop coverage is gone, so it's mostly open prairie and I try and use hills or deeper ditches.  I had already stopped one time in one of my hidden spots, so I thought I was good.  My bladder started screaming again right around the time I was heading past the feed lot on my running route.  I knew the workers were out feeding the cattle and thought I had seen the workers heading to the back where the silage is.  I had to go really badly, so I ducked by a concrete bunker further down the road of course.  Just as I was standing up to get my pants up, the workers started driving towards me.  I am hoping the glare of the sun was enough to block any view of my bare bum, but I am pretty sure they knew what I was doing on the side of the road.  Dang it.  I try to be fast and look out for cars.  Not this time.  OF course they drove by me super slow and I couldn't make eye contact. I kind of fiddled with Stella's harness and gave them a half hearted wave.  Oh well.  When you have to go, you have to go.  

Thursday:  Travel day!  Back to TN!  We made it in 10 hours with one stop for lunch and one extra stop for gas.  It was the best trip we have ever had with mostly good weather and only one long line at the gas station.  Mom had us a good dinner cooked and Andrew had fun showing granddaddy all of his Lego creations and building him more.  

Friday:  Easy 6.  I had planned on meeting up with a new trail buddy and running in Memphis till I saw the weather.  It's pretty much suppose to be either storming or raining the whole time we are home:(  I decided it wasn't worth driving an hour to get rained out or be in the mud.  Sunday was suppose to be a better day, so I decided to put off my long run till then.  Stella and I got 6 miles in doing some pounding of the pavement.  She was not happy with the drizzling rain and constant stopping for cross walk lights. She also told me traffic was stupid and sidewalks with glass are not fun.  I agree girlie!
that was me sweating buckets

Saturday:  Easy 5 or long run.  Choose your own adventure.  I decided to get my 5 in because we were suppose to get storms later.  It is always nice to get a run in where I use to ride my horse when I was in college. Also, wow, humidity.  At  99%, it just about killed me because I am NOT use to it yet this year!  

Stella was just happy we were off of major traffic filled roads.  We passed some loose dogs and had one car pass us the whole hour.  It was green and humid, and so different than Kansas.  

Sunday:  Long run.  I had found a route during my 5 mile run that was ~ 6 miles and perfect for a two looper to get my 13 in.  When we drove around the loop to check it out, we didn't see any dogs but when I ran it, every single house had one or more.  Sigh.  Country life.  It was also horribly humid at 7 am, to the point I had to shed my jacket and just run in a tech T and shorts. Unfortunately,  I was not very comfortable at feels like 40, but I was also tired of sweating buckets.  

After my run and a quick shower, we headed to ReelFoot Lake to look for eagles.  We found one nest with an eagle on it, and several blue herons, and one beaver.  We even went to the town of Hickman KY to look at the flooding and Mississippi river.   We went down many back roads trying to find more eagles and had so much fun seeing so much wildlife.  We also got to see some of the birds they had at the welcome center.

On to peak week !  Last big week before a nice long taper and race day!  I am digging the new weekly wrap, so check it out and find a new blog you might love! Kim at Running on the Fly and Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner host, so head over and read up!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

IMPA in dogs-Information for those seeking it

Taken in 2019-Healthy and back to running
I have honestly pondered several times starting a FB group for those of us who have had dogs battle IMPA.  I searched out others who had battled this disease when Stella was diagnosed and now that we are through and on the other side, I have become a resource for others who are now battling this horrible disease with their beloved pets.  I wanted to put together a blog post that covers the basics of how to navigate this disease.  I will try and reference papers so if you are like me, you can search, but most of this is coming from those of us who have battled this horrible illness.

1.  This disease never goes away.  Your pet can be in remission but the disease is still lurking inside of them waiting for the next time to hit them hard.  We are currently in remission but believe me, every time she limps, every time she takes a while to get up from laying down, any time she acts funny, I am bracing myself for it's return.

She lost quite a bit of weight and had shaved legs for a while

2.  Proper diagnosis.  Joint taps are almost necessary for clear diagnosis.  Rule out all other diagnosable diseases that have proper tests first, but if IMPA is in question, do the joint tap under sedation for a clear answer.  It is worth the money and time to know, and it does not cause your dog anymore pain than any other diagnostic test.  The dog is under light sedation, so they feel nothing.

We sat in many waiting rooms and became pros at waiting
3.  This disease is a marathon, not a sprint (quote credit give to my good friend Shanda). While I am sure there are those dogs out there that quickly get better, most take months if not years to get over this disease.  As we found out with Stella, backing the prednisone off too quickly = relapse.  Manage your expectations by understanding that this disease takes MANY medications and many step downs and can take lots and lots of time.  For Stella that took almost a year of weekly and then monthly vet visits including routine blood draws, adjustments of medications, checking of urine and blood pressure, and time off from work for me.  My final bill was over 6 thousand dollars, but I would do it again in a heartbeat to save my baby.


4.  The drugs that it takes to beat this disease can have very horrible side effects, but it takes strong medication to completely put your dog's immune system under submission.  Due to the prednisone (Pred), Stella basically peed so badly all over our house that what little carpet we had left had to be ripped up and trashed.  We also will have to rip up and replace a section of hardwood that she frequented.  She was also very very hungry and testy, and we had to manage her very carefully, especially with a kiddo in the house.  She would snatch food out of your hand and not care if she was suppose to be getting said food or if she got fingers or hands in the process.  Her hunger ruled her world. 

Swelling in her hind legs
5.  Combo of drugs may have to be explored.  Usually your vet will try the cheaper more generic drugs first (or at least we did) and then move to the more expensive combos.  Pred will more than likely be the main drug of choice but there are lots of combos that vet's can try.  What worked for Stella was a combo of Pred and Azathioprine.  There are lots and lots of combos out there that can work so do your research.  Ask lots of questions.  This isn't a common disease in dogs, so most vets don't have a ton of experience with this disease.  We were VERY lucky in that we had KSU 20 minutes away to get the diagnostic tests we needed and the pharmacy to provide the meds.  My local pharmacy also helped me source the cyclosporine as it was very expensive (and eventually deemed ineffective, thank goodness).

First official marathon 2018
6.  Every journey is different, but ask lots of questions of those who have been through it.  A lot of my questions and concerns were answered via FB because I had put out a plea to have anyone and everyone who had heard of this disease or experience with it to contact me.  I had several people that I did not even know contact me through PM and help me through. I even had a few phone calls when we thought it was Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever that I basically had crying break downs during, but they were necessary to get information.  The treatment plan that eventually worked for Stella was one that a new FB friend had used for her dog.  She even sent me the complete medical history of her dog so that my vets could take a look and see if anything they used could be of use for Stella.  You just never know what gem from other people will help you with your expectations.  Take lots of notes when you take your dog to the vet and or take someone with you.  I did this several times by taking my undergrad students with me.  Having another set of ears helps you because you are trying to digest everything and make sense of everything and you may miss something.

Here are some links to articles I found helpful:

As always listen to your vet and do your research!  My vets at KSU and my primary care vet were both very receptive to me bringing in any research I could find and asking lots and lots and lots of questions.  I always tried to be respectful with my questioning and I even got a few immunologists involved to help me decipher the science behind this all.  Feel free to contact me to talk as well!  My email is  I also am on FB at Running with Reds as well as instagram Redaussie3.  I wish you much luck if you are going through this with your pet.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Week 7: Training for the Rockin K Trail Marathon

Back in the saddle and back in Kansas where it is cold and yucky!  We had not only ice predicted, but again heavy snow.  Sigh.  I am so over it!  I want to be back in tech Ts and shorts.  I am really, really digging this plan I made.  It may not be scientifically correct and it ever changes (who am I?), but I am loving it!  I am really loving the cut back weeks and slow and gently builds.  If this plan works, this may be my new marathon training plan forever and ever :)  Knocking on a huge piece of wood as I type this, I think between Cross fit, using the 4:1 run walk ratio, AND a kinder gentler training cycle without hard core speed work, my injury prone body is way more happier and productive.

Monday:  Cross Fit.  Today's workout I dubbed death by burpees.    I try not to judge any work out when i peek at it on my phone app, but this one I knew was going to be tough for me, the hater of all things burpee.  I am still not doing a full push up, more of a sprawl to the floor and then jumping my legs in kind of burpee like, with a jump up once I gather my butt off of the floor.  I also got a PR on my back squat by lifting 115 lbs on my 1 max rep.  The scary thing is, I think I could have gone heavier!  I am really enjoying starting this journey of heavy lifting and can't wait to see what my body can do.

That is a field of solid ice
Tuesday: Easy 6 or 7.  Since I am really playing with my running cycle and trying new things, like running by feel.   The weather was pretty cold (feels like 7 when I ventured out), so I debated about putting a full face mask over my head and face, but instead went with a buff, which quickly froze stiff from the cold and my breathing.  I decided to go ahead and get the 7 so I could do one less mile later in the week.  We saw lots of migratory birds once again so maybe spring isn't too far off?  The snow geese are back and there were larges groups of some smaller birds flying through, which I think is a good sign that spring may be around the corner.  Afterwards while drinking my chocolate milk, I got the shakes.  I took a hot shower thinking that would stop it but I couldn't stop shaking.  I don't know what was wrong, my blood sugars seemed fine and I was completely covered up in good warm dry clothes.  So weird.

Wednesday:  Dead lift day!  Except when I woke up yet again, ice was glazed on everything.  Sigh. I can't deal with this ice any longer.  I went back to bed and woke up to Andrew's school being on a 2 hour delay.   I figured I could hit open gym and get er done then.

Thursday:  Easy 6 or 7.  I decided when I started that I felt good and since the weather looked horrible for the weekend, I would much rather get as much outside as I could.   This was my first frozen eye lash run, mainly because I had to kept my buff up over my face and that was causing everything to freeze up including my buff.  I was nice and toasty, even though it was feels like 8, as I grabbed my Craft jacket that I got from trying out Mercury Mile boxes, my nice Nike wool base layer shirt, and my road runner fleece running pants. I also double gloved and put a running skirt over my pants to keep my bum warm.  It was a really nice run body wise too and I got to see two bald eagles.  I just took stella today so we could have a mommy and me running session.  Sometimes we just have to have girl days and leave the boys at home.   

Later we headed to the gym to make up the work out I missed on Wednesday.  I worked up to a PR on my dead lift at 138 lbs for 3 reps.  The WOD was a little wonky but I tried my best.  We had two sets of things we did.  One minute we did hand stand push ups or sitting down shoulder presses for me (15lbs) and then went and did 8 push ups (the rest of the time was rest).  Then on the second minute, we did a kind of confusing dumb bell series including dead lift/hang clean, and front squat.  We did as many of those in order as we could until 40 seconds was up and then we had 20 second rest.  We did five rounds of the two sets for a total of 10 minutes.  My shoulders were toast after this!!!!

Friday:  REST DAY!  My son had yet another day off of school, this time not sure why?  Not weather related as it was planned, so we took our time getting ready and getting to the office.  Boy was I SORE from the work out the day before.  Part of me wanted to get my weekend runs done since it was going to be a balmy 40 degrees.  The weekend weather looked horrible but it just wasn't meant to be for me work wise.  I haven't had 8 hours of solid work in a long time and today was the day and I loved it!  I miss working hard all day every day (which sounds weird but I do better when I am super busy)
are you taking selfies? DON'T TAKE MY SELFIE!
Saturday:  18-20 miler.   I gave myself a range since I am keeping this schedule loose.  I would have loved to get two 20 milers in or even a 20 and a 22 miler because this race is technically 28 miles total.  I was in and out of the struggle bus throughout the whole run.  The 16 mph NNE wind made running that direction very challenging, and there are several legs of my route that headed that way.  I did around 13 miles and then headed to the house to get a re load of tailwind bottles.  I am really digging my tailwind right now and take in a bottle with 2 scoops every hour.  I skip fueling for the first hour  of running and have been doing a few GU chomps or Cliff shot blocks a few minutes before I head out. Then post the first hour of running, I am getting one bottle/2 scoops down per hour.  My body seems to really like it and other than taking a pit stop when re filled my bottles, no code browns during my run :)  I still have to squat and pee a few times in ditches usually, but it is what it is. I am sure when it is hot outside my body will use that liquid more efficiently.   I also saw 9 bald eagles.  They were enjoying the sun and the crazy wind. I couldn't take any pictures because my phone likes to die when it is cold out.  I was doing lots of silent squeeeeing under my face mask.

side eye game on point

Post running I was HANGRY.  Like take a shower and then eat.all.the.things.  I haven't been that hungry post run in a long time.  I had me a nice bacon cheeseburger, some fries, some fried mushrooms, and some cheese cake for dessert.  Yes, I guess it was a cheat day, and I inhaled everything including two nice beers and I don't regret it.

Sunday:  easy 4.  Since I had run 19.4 the day before, I technically only needed 3.6.  We woke up to around 3 inches or so of fresh snow and feels like -11.  EEEK.  I love running in fresh snow, but that wind chill didn't sound like fun, even for a quick run.  I was pretty sore, probably from dead lifts and then 2 days later 19.4 miles.   I opted for an instead mill run and got er done with the help of some Steve Aoki bumping in my ears.  I took it super duper easy too.  I have a massage appointment with Miss Trina at Rising Phoenix Wellness coming up and probably one more tune up with the Bringer of Pain from Body First. I am really glad because doing max lifts minus shoes really has my PF flared up (note to self, don't do that again) and my hips are kind of feeling a little wonky. 

I am doing a new link up with Kim from Running on the Fly and Deborah from Confessions of A Mother runner.  Kim has been an inspiration for me for years and is why I gave Ultras and timed ultras a try and Deborah has also been one of my favorites for years.  Check out the blogs in the link up!  Have a great week!

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Week 6: Training for the Rockin K Trail marathon

I no longer have to say the word "REAL" in my titles because I previously hadn't gotten to week 6 before hitting the reset button and starting over.  Whew, shorter title.  On a sad note, my Aunt Bab's passed away in her sleep over the previous weekend.  She was 81 and had lived an amazing life.  She was the picture of what hard work is.  She was still bowling at her age regularly, going to tournaments, and having lunches regularly with her friends despite her COPD.  She is my mom's closest sister, so please keep my mom and aunt nancy (her other sister), and her 4 kiddos and numerous grand kids in your thoughts and prayers.  This week was all about figuring out how to get to TN and still get my runs in.

I love this picture of my aunt and andrew.  I think this was at his first birthday party
Monday:  Back squat day and Cross Fit fun.  We are almost to our max out for this series, so I upped the weights for this round.  The work out was pretty straight forward just going from 65% up to 90% and then doing a few extra rounds at 85%. I told my coach later this felt too easy and I was worried I had grabbed the trainer bar by mistake (which she said I did not).  We finished with a 1K meter row, which I got another PR on reducing my time down to 4:43 for that distance.  My legs felt pretty weak at the end thanks to the 16 miler I had done on saturday.  I am still not rowing the way I need to be.  I feel like I correct one thing and then I create a new problem.  I was leaning back way too much when I was pulling (is this the correct term?) so to try and stop doing that, I am now not getting full leg extension and returning the handle too quickly.  Sigh.  1 step forward and one step back.

Tuesday:  7 miles and travel.  Once all of the funeral arrangements were set, I could get a ticket and plan my trip.  I needed to get my mileage done before I headed out to the airport to beat the snow storm that was coming in. I decided to add a couple of extra miles so if I needed to do less tomorrow, I could. Then I headed to our local airport early to beat the snow. I sat, and sat, and sat, and sat.  They delayed my flight and delayed and delayed.  I just had a good book, my phone plugged into an outlet and some good snacks so I wasn't too worried.  Except my mom on the other end was going to be driving in late and then driving us both back super late.  I told her we could just get a hotel but she is super woman and was wide awake so no need to sleep!  She even let me sleep till 10 am the next day, glorious!

Wednesday:  Easy 5.  I planned a route from my mom's house and then some weirdo kept following me which made me change everything.  It's a long drawn out story, but he kept blocking my way through the park at the end of their road and making me feel very uncomfortable, so I just did hill repeats up and down my parent's street for 5 miles.  At one point it was pouring rain, but I was in my tech T and shorts and it felt SO good to be outside and not freezing my buns off!

My aunt babs with my mom

Thursday:  Rest day and funeral.  We laid my Aunt Babs to rest and visited with family.  I hate that it takes something like this to get family together, but we sure did have an amazing time visiting and catching up.  We are all scattered from TX to KS to North Carolina.  There were 6 cousins and 2 second cousins there, and even though we range in age, we all had a great time.  Plus, my brother in Atlanta came up and stayed with us all afternoon and night. 

We ate, drank, and told stories, and it was beautiful and sad and amazing all rolled into one.  My aunt Babs touched a lot of lives and it was very heart warming to hear stories and meet people that she had influenced and loved.  The best part was one of her distract managers at Walmart came and talked during the funeral services, and he told the best stories that made us laugh and cry.  The rain that was forecasted that day held off, and I would like to think my aunt had a hand in that:)

my why can't the walkers stay in the correct lanes face
Friday:  Easy 5.    When it was time to go run, it was pouring outside, and i just didn't feel like doing a rain run.  I hit up my mom's gym where there is an indoor track and treadmills.  Nine laps = one mile, but I decided to trust my watch's indoor setting and just do it.  There are very strict rules about the way you handle the track, but no one follows them.  It's always fun to be running in between walkers and getting blocked by them walking three and four abreast, as they constantly are NOT in their lanes.  My knee was throbbing about half way through, since you HAD to run the same way at all times.  My Cross Fit coach told me I should have done some miles backwards LOL!  I had thought about doing my dead lifts post run, but Coach Erin said no since I had an 18 miler the next day.  It turned out that one of my best friends from growing up was in town as well planning a funeral for her grandma so we met up for a late lunch/early dinner.  I wished we had gotten some pictures.  We ate at this really awesome local brewery called Rockin Dough and it was amazing, both the beer and the food.  I am hoping to go and visit Mendy down in FL, because she lives very close to the beach and not far from Orlando.  I think Andrew would love it!

what I was trying to outrun

Saturday:  18 miles.  The forecast looked horrible, but the prospect of running 18 miles on an indoor track sounded horrible, especially after just doing an hour was like pulling teeth.  I decided as long as there was no lightning, my butt was going to be outside.  Rain wouldn't make me melt.  Sidewalks however are not my normal running surface, so my body was not happy about half way through.  Between my mom calling and step dad calling every time it rained, I was feeling very safe and loved and glad i had aftershokz headphones.  I headed out of their neighborhood and did some out and backs in an industrial area and listened to This Podcast Will Kill you and Another Mother Runner.  It's amazing how good podcasts make you forget how long you have been running.  No weirdos at all, just a few honks, and a nice quick conversation with a homeless man about how drenched i was.  After a shower and some rest we once again had a late lunch at my favorite pizza place Snappy Tomato.

Sunday:  Rest and travel day.  Mom and I got on the road super early and to the airport in plenty of time.  Both of my flights were on time and I got to dine on some real chicago pizza at the airport!  Yes, I think the theme of my trip was pizza and fried chicken and I had a couple of cheat days but it is what it is. 
blue skies and 50 mph winds
I arrived home in plenty of time to do 8 loads of laundry and clean the house from top to bottom (typed with a very sarcastic font), but I am just thankful that my hubby took on the challenge of three crazy dogs and a 6 year old solo so I could get away and be with my family. 

As always, I am linking up with HoHo Runs and Wendy at Taking the Long Way Home for the Weekly Wrap.  Please forgive my typos and incoherent sentences as I am typing this up late Sunday night:).  This is the last week for the weekly wrap hosted by these two ladies and I am very, very sad it is ending.  I can't wait to join some of the other wrap ups but this one will always be my first and favorite.