Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 Goals

Spending some time writing while the boys nap.  Here lately, that is the only time I have time to write ,but I will take it!  I still need to invest in a lap top, so I won't be so constricted to one spot for writing. Everyone has been doing their year in review posts and their resolution/goals posts for next year.  I so love reading what everyone has been up to and what they intend on doing next year.

 Honestly, I am not really looking to change much, more just keep up what I have been doing because it sure did work. I got a PB on every course I ran this year that I had run the previous year, and I got some new PRs in all distances.   I want to continue to do my strength training and get back to twice a week  (shhh, don't tell my coach I have only been doing them once a week since Chicago:).  I do want to hit more trails, especially with the trail nerd association in KC and their awesome races, even if it means some drive time.  I am looking forward to another summer of training for some sort of fall marathon and maybe bringing back the 25 K i did in 2014.  Of course I can't wait to do the Heartland Series with Mel G and get that finishers jacket!!!!  I am looking forward to my normal local races including Brew to Shoe 10 K, Speedy PD 10 K, Tails on the Trail 5 K and the local dog/trail race that I missed due to Chicago last year.  Mel and I are also eyeing a couple of 10 miler trail runs throughout the year on that tough trail that i did just recently for the Alternative chili run 10 miler.  All in all, i am looking forward to an injury free, running packed 2016!

Happy New Year!!!!!

Monday, December 28, 2015

The never ending stomach virus

Okay honestly, I have not had a virus like this in years.  Tony and i are still battling the after effects.   Just when we think we are over it, it hits us again.  I honestly still don't have an appetite, and when I do and eat, it comes back to haunt me every time with horrible indigestion, burps and diarrhea.  I wanted to run yesterday and just didn't think I had the energy, since I had not really eaten.  I ending up briskly walking for 3 miles on the mill while watching a movie, when the boys went down for a nap.  Later on, when andrew was upstairs playing, I managed to get my strength training routine done, but it was slow going.  I ended the week with 3 total miles running.  I guess everyone needs a down week now and again.
We have done a lot of this the past two days.  He has suddenly decided the bike is pretty cool, and that he can go FAST.  While I like running with him while he pedals, he is about to give me a heart attack as he has NO fear.  He has laid the bike over a couple of times now but he always just brushes off and gets back on. Not sure if that is a good or bad thing:)
We ride all over town which is the perks of living in a very small town.  The sidewalks are pretty good and even when we have to be in the street, people are pretty good about watching out for us.  The best part of all of this, Tony has started riding his bike too!  I love that this is causing all of us to be active again.  I run while the boys ride and it just works out great!

Well, hoping to be back at work tomorrow!  Have lots to do before we are gone for a whole week to San Deigo for the UGM.  Maybe this year i got my sicknesses out of the way before we head out.  Let's hope I get some good running in because it sure is beautiful there!

Friday, December 25, 2015

A bump in the road part two and MERRY CHRISTMAS!

I thought I would update as the boys are all out now from all the Christmas fun!

I heard back from the radiologist yesterday that the tumor or lump was benign.  That was a huge relief.  However, he kind of disagreed with the pathology report and that kind of worried me.  He felt like what he was seeing was a radial scar, and the pathologist didn't even look for that type of tissue.  He suggested a follow up in 6 months, but I just didn't feel comfortable with this plan.  After doing some research into radial scars and seeing the exact pics that i saw on my mammogram and ultrasound on the pages I found, I totally see why he thought it was a radial scar.  My primary care physician called shortly after the radiologist.  We discussed my concerns about the wait and see method and how uncomfortable I was with that method. She assured me that if it was cancerous, that type of cancer is slow growing, thus the reason for the 6 month re screen.  She was very open to listening to all of my concerns and my experiences.

See here is why I am worried.  If the tissue was indeed a radial scar, my chances of developing breast cancer are greatly increased.  Monitoring is one method, but a full surgical biopsy is also a very good idea, as according to my research, the core biopsy is not the best way to determine cancer cells in a radial scar.  The radiologist didn't suggest surgery, but my primary care physician thought that that might be a good idea.  Unfortunately with it being the holidays, her go to surgeon was out of town, but as soon as he gets back, she is going to consult with him and then possibly set me up to see him as well.  I like this forward approach.  I would rather stay on top of this whole process and do a full biopsy of this tissue rather than wait and see.  It if is benign after the full biopsy, then I can rest easy.
In other news, I worked Christmas eve to get some stuff done, since I was unexpectedly out a little last week.  We get Christmas eve off, but my boss is totally cool with me swapping out days.  Unfortunately as the day progressed, I started feeling worse and worse.  Tony had had a stomach illness the day before and even had been off of work, and apparently it was viral as I got it too.  I haven't thrown up that much in a long, long time.  It lasted about 6 hours, thank GOD, but it kind of ruined Christmas eve.  While everyone was down stairs having fun, I was upstairs quarantined.  Luckily this morning i have felt fine and have even eaten a little.
The only present Andrew kept asking for was a flipping Thomas.  It flips and has a remote and goes all over.  It even takes a nap eventually BUT it talks CONSTANTLY.  I like it when it naps the best.  He was SO excited when he saw Flipping Thomas.

You know you are officially an adult when new sheets and a quilt, plus some new towels are the BEST present EVER!
Santa also brought Andrew a bike.  Unfortunately, Andrew has deemed the bike scary.  He did finally go outside and go up and down our road, while Daddy road his bike.  He still isn't totally excited about it, but I am sure it will grow on him.  I am just glad he hasn't gotten sick yet. 

Well, going to get back to the family and maybe eat something tonight.  Have a very Merry Christmas!!!!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A bump in the road

I wasn't expecting this at all so here goes.  Last week, during my normal physical, I voiced a concern to my doctor about some pain I was feeling in my right breast.  It wasn't constant, it came and went with my cycle, but it seemed to be getting worse, and i should note there that I have a very high pain tolerance.  My Dr felt like a baseline mammogram might be a good idea, and surprisingly got me scheduled for the next monday (two days ago).  After the couple of shots they normally took, the tech came in and said the radiologist wanted some shots with a different plate.  I thought, okay, these people are thorough, great.  After several more shots and some waiting, I was ushered to a sonogram room to have a sonogram.  The tech seemed to have trouble finding what they were looking for, so the Dr who read the mammograms came in and took a look.  After they consulted, I was told I needed a biopsy and could I come the very next day (yesterday).  They even called back later that day and scheduled me for an earlier time.  Let's just say I was very concerned with their speed of scheduling.  After sitting in the parking lot of my work for a while sobbing and talking to my mom and hubby, I decided to head home and take it easy for the rest of the day.  We have a very light schedule this week in the lab, so I had some wiggle room with experiments.

I slept well after a few little minor break downs.  Thank God my mom in law is here so she could be my driver and care taker.  I of course did lots of research about biopsies and the results.  Knowledge is power for me, especially being a scientist that dabbles in cancer research.   I know all the stories, good and bad.  The morning of the biopsy, I put it out on FB that I was going in for a biopsy.  I did that not for sympathy, but more for prayers and for similar stories.  I got over 100 comments, many about people having the same issue after their first mammogram.  Believe me, hearing over and over again about women having the same issues and it being nothing, plus tons of prayers and positive vibes really helped calm me down.

I wanted to write about the procedure here, more for information for others that might go through this.  Again, the more I knew, the calmer it kept me.  I am NOT a fan of needles.  I choose to not look at any of the needles, to just to close my eyes and go to a happy place.  I have to say though, getting to watch on the screen was kind of cool, and actually didn't freak me out at all, BUT I never watched the Dr, just stared at the screen.  Let me back up and explain the process.  The first step was looking for the lump again and taking some pictures.  Then the Dr came in and set up a sterile field and starting the numbing process.  After the initial prick of that needle, I really didn't feel anything, and the numbing needle is LONG!  I am so glad i didn't look at it's size till afterwards.  Once you are all numb, the Dr uses the ultrasound to watch as he guides the coring needle in.  A very small incision is made and the needle is inserted, all of which I had no feeling of.  My Dr took 5 or 6 cores out very quickly.  He constantly asked about my pain level, and was prepared to put more numbing agent in if needed. I only had one core that sort of hurt, but it was not a very bad pain at all.  Total time the needle was in,  maybe 5 minutes but no more than 10, just like they had told me.  He even made a comment that he thought he sucked the lump right out as it was so small.  Afterwards, he inserted a very small clip into the site where the lump was and then the nurse started compression, as I was bleeding a bit at this point.    Nothing was painful, as I was numb, so we chatted while she got the bleeding stopped.  That took probably the longest time of anything.  As soon as the bleeding stopped, I was taken to a mammogram room and had two mammograms done to make sure the clip was in place.  Again, I was numb so I didn't feel a thing.  After more compression, since the mammogram cause the bleeding to start up again, I was bandaged in a compression bandage and sent home with tylenol and ice packs and no lifting advice (including dogs and kiddos).

Honestly the procedure was smooth, the pain was minimal and I am back at work today feeling fine.  I took the aftercare instructions to heart, and followed all of them, so I can get back to running and working out.  The worst part is the compression bandage.  My poor right breast is squished to the max right now.

Andrew had lots of questions as he was suppose to get to stay home yesterday and that plan quickly changed. I tried to keep information minimal telling him that I had a dr's appointment and that they were going to use a needle to look at things.  I showed him the bandage last night, and he thought it was pretty cool.  He is doing really well with the no picking up thing and he slept down stairs with daddy last night so I could rest comfortably.  The compression bandage is the only part that is keeping me uncomfortable, not the pain of the biopsy.  I should know something thursday morning so stay tuned.  I am confident that it is nothing, but if it is something, I am ready to fight.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Guest Blogger Year in Review

Hello everyone!  I just wanted to bring a guest blogger on here to talk about her year in running. She has a err, very unique take on running.  My guest blogger today has completed almost 1200 miles running this year while training for various races including her very first real half marathon (not virtual) and multiple trail  runs including a very technical trail 10 miler.  She also trained for her very first marathon but due to stupid rules, couldn't actually run in said marathon.

Without further ado, I am happy to introduce STELLA!
Hi there!   My name is stella ella, and mom and the little red two legged toddler call me Stel, La, or La La.  When I am in trouble, I am STELLA ELLA COLEMAN.  I am a red tri australian shepherd, meaning I am red, tan, and white with no spotties like my brother Deuce.  When I am not taking care of my human family (I am chief boogey man guard and head of my doggy pack), I am running with my favorite human.
She totally understands me and my need for speed and daily exercise.  We do long runs together and easy runs together, but also speed work, hill repeats and any other crazy work out her coach puts her up to.   I am her favorite cheerleader, and I sometimes get so excited that I nip her to remind her to speed up or LET'S GO!
I also like to run with her favorite running human friend like speedy Mel or rocking Robin.  Honestly, I love all runners because, hello, I am a runner too!

Mom and I trained for several races this year, and i got to do my actual first half marathon race.  I helped mom cross the finish line at the first annual Wicked Half marathon in our hometown.  I even came in first place dog!
 We also did a 10 K together, and I pulled mom to a 10 K PR!  This was a dog race that benefitted the  KSU veterinarian sophomore class and an organization called KSDS.  KSDS is a really cool organization that helps raise and train service dogs, and pair them to humans that might benefit from canine assistance in daily life.
We also did a few 5ks together, including one that benefitted a school that my little two legged brother will be attending some day soon, and a local animal shelter in Topeka.

I sure do love racing with my mom.  She isn't as fast as me, and i sometimes have to pull her up those hills, but we manage.  Sometimes at small races, I pull her to something called an age group award.  I don't care about that stuff, just give me some treats!

We also ran a thing called a virtual half marathon.  I did one last year to benefit cattle dog rescue, but this one this year was pretty cool, mainly because I got my own medal and bib with my name on it!  This virtual run benefitted an organization that pairs service dogs for veterans.  Pretty cool huh?
Then, after we had all this fun in the spring and early summer, we got serious and started putting in mega miles.  We started doing runs that involved double digits, even during the weekly runs.  It was tough, but I would like to think that due to my pacing, my mom was able to finish the Chicago marathon without any issues.  I was just sad I never got to do the entire 26.2, but i am sure looking forward to training for something called a 50 K, maybe in 2016 or 2017.  Mom tells me that they allow dogs in the one she is looking at, and I am excited to finally get to run the race with my mom, even if it is this crazy distance.  
 Mom and I got bitten by the trail bug at the end of this year.  We got muddy, and i had to show her the way several times, but we finished with a huge smile on our faces and I got my very own medal!
Mom says these trail nerds people love having dogs at their races, so we are going to do more of them, even if they are a couple of hours a way.  I personally loved getting to eat fig newtons on the course, and loved the up and down and round and round.  Although, I was really confused on those switch backs, because I really felt the quickest way down was straight down, not going back and forth over and over again.  Heck, I even trudged through some super deep mud and had to steady mom a few times so she wouldn't fall flat on her face.  Let's just say we are seriously thinking about doing this race again in February.  Of course by then, we might be trudging up and down snow covered hills instead of mud covered hills.  I am sure I will be pulling and steadying my mom up again!
Overall it has been a great year for me and of course my mom.  I have kept her injury free.
I have watched her do some boring stuff called strength training.
I helped my older brother appreciate running.
I stared holes into the back of my mom's head when she either a) ran on the mill instead of taking me out or b)went to a race without me.
I also learned how important rest days were.  
 I also did lots of baby sitting of my younger brother.
Mom says some day he will run with us.  For now, he is just going to have to walk with us.  He says he wants to run some of the kid races next year, but we will have to see.  
Well, that is my year in review!  I want to thank my mom for keeping me active. I get pretty grumpy, just like my mom when she doesn't get her run in.  I can't wait to tear up some trails this year and run my favorite races including Tails on the Trail, Dog and Jog, the Wicked Half, and some trail nerd races.  
Have a great 2016 everyone!

Friday, December 18, 2015

2015 year in review

WOW!  That about sums up 2015 for me.  My first marathon, my first 10 mile technical trail run, and my second year doing the Heartland series.  I have PRs in all distances and some PB on some courses I do every year.  I have been blessed to not have any running injuries thanks to a very awesome running coach that has tuned my running down to 4 days a week and tuned my strength training up to 2 days a week (from 0 days a week I might add).  I have noticed several bloggers following a similar format so this will be much like that.

Favorite race or race experience of the year :  This is tough.  Wicked was one of my favorites because it was literally a block from my house start and finish wise.  Chicago was pretty awesome too because well, my first marathon.  I would have to say though, my most favorite of all the races was hands down the 10 mile trail run I did!  I have never been a trail runner and I am still smiling from this one.  Not only was it so much fun running through mud, rocks, streams, and up earthen damns, but i got to do every bit of it with my favorite running partner!  Plus look at these pictures!!!! They were free, downloadable and AWESOME!

Best Run: Hands down my 20 miler.  It gave me the confidence I needed that this marathon was going to be a success and that i had my nutrition and hydration down to a science. Plus I saw a rainbow:)
Best New Piece of Gear:  My new head lamp.  I saw the review for the mack daddy head lamp in runner's world but I couldn't afford to drop that much on a headlamp.  
Meet it's little and slightly cheaper sister, the Nathan Nebula Fire.  She has so many cool features that I am still learning how to use her.  My favorite feature other than the insane amount of  light she gives and the fact that she is rechargeable?  She blinks when oncoming cars head lights hit her sensor.  BONUS!  I still have idiots not paying attention and almost hitting me, usually because they are texting and driving, but I think this has cut down on the almosts a little more than normal.  I am glad that i plunked down a little more than my normal 20 bucks for a head lamp at home depot.  

Favorite medal:  Without a doubt, Running with the Cows 2015.  The little bell rings and I just love the cow theme.  I buy their merch like it is going out of style just because well, cows are cute!
Favorite running picture:  Well, I am technically pooping, not running, but I sure do love this picture that my BRF took of miss Stella Ella waiting on me during one of our runs.
Okay this one is pretty sweet and pretty special and is a true running picture:)
And this one.  Stella and I bringing it home at the first Wicked Half marathon in Wamego KS.  This is a very close second to the Chicago picture.

This really has been my best year running thanks to Coach Jenny, the speedy Mel G, and Doug at Body First   I should be pretty close to 1200 miles total for the year, which is so much better than last year due to my stupid injury sidelining me.  I am so happy to finish the year injury free thanks to the strength training I have incorporating.  I welcomed a new running partner into my life and she is shaking up my world!  I am so glad we found each other and are pushing each other WAY out of our comfort zones.  I also am so blessed to have had Jenny contact me and start coaching me starting in 2014 but continuing into 2015.  While I sometimes can't believe the plans she sends me, I am happy to say that other than  a few missed runs due to illness, I have completed each and every one of them!  I can't wait to cheer her on again while she completes Boston 2016.  

 I am looking forward to another great year in running in 2016.  My plans include another Wicked Half with Stella ella, my third year of the Heartland series (3 half marathons in 5 weeks) with Mel, and another fall marathon.  I am also playing around with the idea of a 50 K but need to get more trail races under my belt so possibly a 25 k trail race or a trail half or full.  I guess we shall see what the year unfolds!  Happy running New Year to all!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Nuun Ambassador program announcement!

I am SO excited!!!!  I applied for several ambassador programs a while back, and thus far I had been turned down for most everything.  I am on the Kansas Team Beef program for 2016, but I wanted to expand into other types of ambassador programs.  I had contacted several active dog type products, since I am a runner with a dog, but most don't have programs up and running and just offered to send free products in exchange for some blogs (Which I need to finish:).  Anyway, I figured I just didn't have the social media presence, so I was probably not going to get into any of the programs.  Let's face it, I am not a user of twitter, I LOVE instagram though just joined recently, and FB is more just for family and friends.  Then I opened my email last night and I got this:
I was officially picked to be an ambassador!!!!!!  I am SO excited that i can barely type!  I LOVE their products!  With the help of the Nuun all day tablets and the Nuun energy tablets, I have been able to cut out my daily diet soda, and get almost completely off of diet soda and sweet tea  (I admit, I do indulge occasionally, but very rarely) I have been able to boost my daily water intake to up to 60 oz a DAY or more on some days and I no longer have those hunger pains at 11 am and at 3 pm! I also have gotten rid of the dizzy spells I had been having  That is really, really good considering I was getting maybe a few ounces of water a day.  Plus, even when I go out to eat or where ever I am, I can pop a tablet into my water at the restaurant or a water bottle and have my Nuun anytime, anyplace.  I keep a tube of the all day Nuun grape raspberry and the Energy in my purse at all times.  
I am very honest when I say years ago I tried the product I was not a fan at all. I just couldn't find a flavor I liked, and I wasn't training enough in the heat and humidity to see the value.  Then enter in this summer, I trained for my first marathon and that is when I really came back to using Nuun full time.  I bought a tube of the grape electrolyte tablets and that was all she wrote.  I used it on every run and then during the day too, when I wasn't running.  When I was at the expo for Chicago, the Nuun booth introduced me to the all day tablets, and I started incorporating water into every meal time and in between.  I am so happy to have such a great product in my life, and I can't wait to see where this ambassador program will lead me.  I can't wait to try new products and to tell everyone else out there about how great and useful their tablets are for anyone, runner walker or work out enthusiast!   2016 is shaping up to be a super year and i can't wait to get it started!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

2015 Santa visit

We had our first successful santa visit!  If you want to read about last year and the year before, go here and here.  I am happy to say that this year we had no tears.  We were still pretty shy but we sat on santa's lap and actually had a short conversation.  I want to thank IBEW L.U. 226 for having the most awesome Santa as usual.
I just love the woodwork in this building! 
After Santa, we went to our usual post santa meal at Juli's.  We found out some super sad news though.  Juli is moving to Texas, but the shop will remain open.  I hope they keep the same food we have grown to love over the years.  Coffee you can reproduce, but good food, pretty hard to do.
We love Juli and wish her the best.  Andrew fell in love with this Indian statue.  He kept kissing it, so I had to take a picture.
 After lunch we decided to head over to the Overland Station in Topeka as well.  All of my Topeka friends had told me we had to go, but I honestly didn't believe them that it was as awesome as it was.
 I mean, not only did they have a kid's area complete with Thomas train table, they had a full caboose for the kids to play on and in, plus tons of train books, coloring areas and puzzles.  The best part?  On the other side of the doors that andrew was standing by in the picture, there were real trains passing by!
 Plus, the museum part was pretty cool too.  Tony and I couldn't walk through at the leisurely pace we would have liked but we will be back!
We had a great day and can't wait to go back!  Sometimes I wish we could just move to Topeka to be near all of this cool stuff BUT, I could never leave our cute town!  Speaking of our cute town, we made not one but two newspapers this week!
In both pics, he is playing with trains. His little obsession is making us famous!  We also made the video about the the season of lights in the park riding what else, the train!

Well have a great weekend!  My running has been pretty light this week with recovery from the 10 miler being the biggest priority.  Mel and I did an easy 4 miles wednesday, I did an easy 5 miles friday and then yesterday post Christmas and trains, I did an easy 3.  Today I am planning on a long run but I have no clue how many.  It is raining cats and dogs out there with no end according to the weather reports.  

Thursday, December 10, 2015

My favorite winter weather gear

Kind of odd to be talking about winter weather running when it has been 60 degrees but here goes, since it is the season for it!  I wanted to share my favorite winter outfit piece by piece, just to give you an idea of what I do for our Kansas winters.  We have been spared really bad winter weather the past year, and of course are starting into a very mild fall/winter.   You never know when Mother Nature will finally kick in and get the snow/cold temps started.  In our little part of Kansas, we get several days of negative wind chills and a little snow here and there, so I will show you what a typical winter day would look like for me to go out for a run.

Let's start with the head:
First, I always cover my ears.  I LOVE this brook's fleece lined head band. Covers my ears, doesn't move, and bonus, it's pink (which is my favorite running color).  I picked this up at my very first half marathon expo, so it has special meaning, but you can find them at any running store or on Brook's awesome website!  If it is raining/sleeting/snowing, I will cover my entire head with one of my cool running hats.  Right now I am all about my trucker hat that I got from Another mother runner for the Chicago marathon.  I never would have thought I would say that I LOVE a trucker, hat but I DO!  

Moving down the body, I have my saucony drylete neck warmer.  I just picked this up from my local running company this year, and have only got to try it out once but WOW!  I use to try using a full face mask thing when the wind chill got worse.  I don't like things covering my face and impeding my breath.  I find that stuff like that just makes my face sweaty and hot, and I feel claustrophobic.  Plus, even though I had the full face mask deal, my neck wasn't always covered, so I would have to put on yet another piece of clothing, a fleece scarf, to keep my neck warm.  This does all of those thing in one piece of gear!  Notice the little pocket looking thing at the top?  That can be worn up over your nose and mouth and even has a little mesh vent  for getting rid of hot breath.  Plus even when this is pulled up over my face, it still covers my neck down into my jacket.  
What makes this even better is the drawstring with clip on the back.  You can cinch it as tight as you like.  I love this little feature because that is the problem I have with a lot of the face masks, they just don't fit me and my little head and face.  I can't wait to test the gear out more and more this winter.  You can find these neck warmers at your local running store or at Saucony's website.  

Moving down, I have my base layer.  I have tried lots of brands, and the Mizuno breath thermo line is the BEST for me and my body.  It seems so odd to go lighter when it gets colder, but I have found the more bulk you have, the hotter you get, and the more sweat you produce.  The more sweat you have under all of those layers, the more chance you have of actually getting chilled.   I love the breath thermo shirts for my tops and the  Breath thermo tights for keeping me toasty warm.  Both run around 70 bucks retail, but I found them on the clearance rack after winter a couple of years ago,  and I snatched them up for MUCH less.  This find has caused me to pay full price for some other pieces in their collection, but I still scour the racks post winter for great deals. 

When we start having wind or a wind chill, I layer on top of my breath thermo gear with a light wind jacket like this one:
Honestly, I have had my Brook's jacket for years and LOVED it, but it was getting pretty ragged after a few winters of running in it all winter and fall.  I wanted to get myself one piece of gear at the expo in Chicago, and when I saw this Saucony jacket, it was perfect for my "I ran a marathon" gift.  Not only is it light weight, but it is also reflective, eliminating my need for my reflective harness thing i wear when I run at night and HATE.  
Plus I just found this cute little pocket on the back. Never noticed it till a few days ago.
Just looking at the outside, it doesn't seem very big but look at the pocket from the inside!  WOW!  It is huge!  That little pocket fits my iphone 5S in it's otterbox, no problem.  I love the fact that it keeps it close to your body so no flapping and it keeps it warm with your body heat so it doesn't shut down due to cold during winter running.  Having this pocket also eliminates my little fanny pack I normally wear for my phone, and the other pockets on the jacket are perfect for gels and whatever else you need to store.  I LOVE It when a single piece of gear that is needed eliminates  a piece of gear that you have to wear extra.  

This jacket, or this type of jacket, has proven itself worthy in wind chills below 0. I think the coldest I ever ran in was -14 and I felt fine the whole time as far as warmth.  I can't wait to test this particular brand this winter and I hope it serves me as well as my brooks jacket did for so long.  

As far as gloves, that is a toss up.  I really haven't found a brand that I LOVE.
I use these when it isn't super cold out.  These came from Target and are part of their champion line.  While the touch screen fingers really don't work on my phone, I have heard for others it works just fine.  I am kind of sad because I wore these last weekend at the 10 mile trail race, and lost one of the pair.  If anyone has lost a left one and has an extra right one they don't want anymore, I need two to make this work:)

If it is colder out, I will go with these.  They have a layer of thinsulate in them and are toasty warm.                                 
I got them at the local farm store, so I don't know what brand they are.  If it is super cold or I think maybe my hands will get too hot, I will layer these on top of some thinner gloves.  I don't like cold hands, so warm hands is a must.  I have never run with hand warmers but may try those out this year too.

So there are a few of my winter favorites.  I like to layer because you can always take a layer off, but I still keep my layers super light weight, even when it is below 0.  I don't do any special socks, will usually just stick to my normal balenga's or procompressions and my feet usually are fine.  I do have a fleece hat that i will toss on occasionally from time to time, but I find my normal running hats breath better and the fleece makes me sweat. I have friends who run much more bundled up than me, so it is a journey to find what works best for you but I wanted to share what works for me.  

Have a great week!