Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Goodbye spring weather!

I know, all good things must come to an end.  After almost 2 weeks of awesome, spring-like weather, winter will return this weekend, just in time for long runs and super bowl parties.  I am not complaining though, especially since most of the east coast is getting slammed with snow.  I enjoyed opening up my email today and reading blog after blog about fun in the snow, as all of my east coast bloggers are buried in.  I ran in shorts and a lightweight long sleeved shirt last night and it was glorious:)  We even fired up the grill and had grilled pork chops and sweet potatoes for dinner!
I had hill repeats on my schedule for the first time since pre-Konquer the Konza and pre injury.  I was kind of nervous.  Coach Jenny gave me a range 6-8 repeats and gave me instructions of finding a hill that took 45 sec to a minute to climb.  I never really timed my hills previously, as I was doing distance versus time, so I was unsure about what hill would be the best.  I have a variety of hills I do, with varying grades to choose from, so headed out to find which one took the right amount of time to climb.  It just so happened that one of my favorites, favorited mainly due to the fact that it is near my BRF's house and it has lighting at night, did indeed take the required time to conquer.  The second part of my challenge was to combine the warm up and cool down and repeats for a total of 4-5 miles.  Hmmm...well it just so happens that it takes me about a mile and a half to get to this hill, so I would be guaranteed 3 miles just going to and back.  I managed to get exactly 4 miles in between running to and from and the repeats.  How perfect is that?  My hubby also timed it that the meat went on the grill as I was coming in from running, so it really was a perfect night.  Overall, hill repeats are my favorite type of speed workout and even though they were super tough (and these were really, really tough because most of my speed work and or recovery/long runs are done on flat roads), i had a smile on my face at the end for sure.

I did get my cool wrap in the other day, and have been using it ever night for my sometimes naughty ankle.  I am so hoping I win one from Running in SD mom's blog but if not, I will be for sure purchasing the next biggest size for my legs.  I LOVE this product.  I can ice and do whatever needs to be done around the house, and apparently judging by this pic I need to clean up the various toys and shoes (that aren't mine of course).  I would wear flip flops with this on but not shoes, as it does tend to warm up and get whatever you have on wet.    I had socks on last night under them, and they were soaked by the time I was done.  I am trying a protocol of ice/heat/ice, and it seems to be working great.   I was really anxious to see how my leg/ankle held up after hill repeats, so will continue to ice and monitor today and tomorrow.  
I just love this picture.  Andrew loves his uncle.  While it can be a bit of a challenge having an extra person in your house, it's all about family right?  I have to remember that sometimes:)

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Stomach virus NOOOOOO

Well this is turning into an interesting weekend.  Got the call before 4 pm yesterday that andrew was throwing up.  A nasty 24 hour stomach virus had been going around the preschool, so I knew it was only a matter of time for him to come down with it.  He seemed okay by the time I got from manhattan to wamego, but definitely running a little bit of fever.  We took it easy and ate some crackers for dinner and drank some water.  Some time around 1:30 am andrew started getting restless.  His fever was up to almost 103, and he totally refused to take any medicine. I had tricked him earlier by adding it to his water, since he was chugging it like it was going out of style.  This time, he knew what was up, and refused to drink any water.  He seemed to settle back down after 30 or so minutes, so we though good, he will sleep it off.  Unfortunately, that was short lived as he started violently puking all over me, the bed, pillows and the poor dogs!  My hubby snatched him up and tried to make it to the bathroom, but round two started before he could get him there, and it got all over the carpet and the bathroom floor.  Kind of glad he wouldn't take the red medicine because that would have been icky and super hard to clean up.  I had immediately started stripping the bed and myself to get laundry started as I figured there would be more.  My hubby decided if he wouldn't take meds and couldn't keep them down, that they would take a nice cool bath, which worked great for his fever.  He dropped 2 degrees pretty quickly, and we got him back in bed and watching thomas.  I for whatever reason couldn't sleep and was wide awake till almost 4:30 am. I think that I was waiting for round three and or had some major adrenalin rush going on. I tried listening to podcasts to get sleepy again but that just woke my mind up even more. Andrew woke up around 8:30 am with a fever, but so far no more puking and the fever is pretty low grade.  It seems to be coming out the other end now, which is good and bad.  At least the diaper seems to catch most of it:)  Guess we will have to make a target run tomorrow as we have gone through a ton of pull ups today!
I had a long run scheduled for this morning.  I decided that postponing to this afternoon might be a better idea to try and get some sleep.  I don't like long running in the afternoon because it screws up my fueling, but the temperatures were actually super nice this afternoon and tomorrow is suppose be cooler and super windy (like 30 mph winds).  I would much rather do a recovery run and fight the wind versus the long run and fight the wind.
It actually wasn't too bad on me till i had to turn and head almost 3 miles into sustained 14 mph winds.  That took the winds out of my sails but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger right?
Thank goodness stella is like a barn sour horse.  Point her back towards home and she is all business.  Some times it's nice to let her just pull me along and let her do the work.
Glad that is over. Almost 7.5 miles and no pain!  Still being mindful of my ankle and will be icing it here shortly.  I actually ordered a new icing wrap from Dr. Cool.  Check out their website as they are having a big sale right now.  Also check out the review on Running With SD mom's blog site!  She is the reason why I bought mine.  I am so excited to have it and the flexibility of not being stuck in a chair while I ice.  I will let you know how it goes when I get mine.  

Have a great weekend!!!!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Is it spring already?

I am getting confused and I think Mother nature is as well.  We were out all weekend in our light spring wind breakers and t-shirts!  I can't believe this nice reprieve we are having here in Kansas.  I am LOVING it!  Andrew and I had a pizza date on a patio and then a trip to the zoo yesterday post my long run.
We had a 50 minute non stop run on tap followed by 20 minutes of 4 x 1 (four minute run, one minute walk) with 5 minutes of warm up and cool down.  I never get tired of running on this road for some odd reason.  It looks pretty boring but what you can't see is the airport (and favorite port a pottie:) on one side and the fields of snow geese on the other.  Every season boasts something to look at whether it be wild life, crops or both.  I love living in a small town with nice rural roads for running.  No traffic, scenery, and little to no hills make it ideal.  I also like to come out here for some speed work because it is flat as a pan cake and there are no spectators save the wild life and they typically don't care what I am up to. 

I can tell my bio mechanics have changed and are staying changed thanks to the new aches and pains I have.  On top of some sore hammies, my ankle continues to not be happy but I am icing, stretching and resting when I need to.  It actually excites me to have regular runner pains finally!
After my long run and our pizza date, we headed to our little local zoo.  It's a cheap way to spend time and let little red run off some steam.  He is now beginning to really like looking at the animals and the chimps are his favorite.  
Birds at the zoo have always loved andrew and I am not sure why.  Maybe because little kids usually feed them?  This black swan kept coming right up to him on the other side of the fence in a very non threatening, non demanding way.  Maybe it is the red hair?  
Our little zoo has great hills and walkways, which are perfect for tiring 2 year olds out.  I highly recommend it if you have a little that needs to burn off some steam!
In the end, I got stuck in the van letting him take a nice long nap, but it was worth it.  I got to prop my feet up and catch up on some reading while he napped away.  I had my first week back in a routine and all of my runs felt great.  Especially my speed work, which was a nice fartlek ladder mixed in with about 5 miles of running.  Honestly, it kicked my booty, but sometimes those work outs make you feel the best.  I kept at it, tried my hardest, and while I didn't achieve my goal pace for all parts of the ladder, I was pretty darn close.  I had to feel good about my level of effort.  I have to say, I am really digging these new works out that Coach Jenny is giving me.  I typically dread the pace runs and tempos runs and while I know they are coming, having some new stuff sprinkled in helps bring th love back to speed.  Coach Jenny has been sending me my plan week to week, since my travels and my propensity to get sick thanks to having a little around.  I have always been one of those who only looks at the week at hand even when given more than that at a time anyway.  Coach Jenny just gave me a few weeks to look over yesterday but I still don't like to look too far ahead.  I like the element of surprise.  
I also like stickers.  We have officially hit the I like sticker phase.  I luckily stupidly found a Thomas book that also had a page of stickers in it. Thomas stickers are very high value stickers (not the ones I have currently all over my hand, those came out of a happy meal).  I am using this knowledge to my advantage:)   Have a great week!!!!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

I want my routine back!

Do i ever miss this place!  
Getting back into a routine is so hard.  After two weeks of working little and being off due to thursday holidays and preschool being shut down and then adding to the chaos a week of being gone to San Diego, I am ready for some normal weeks!!!!  Other than last week, I have been getting my workouts done and venturing back into the world of cross training.  I had really hoped to get back to the pool this week and to start the kettle bell class at my local gym but late planes, dead car batteries, and recovery from whatever this stomach ailment is, has kept me from those things.  I did get to run Tuesday night, just some straight up time/miles and finally got the grocery store last night, so we could stop eating dry cereal (which honestly has been the only thing my tummy has wanted).  I am looking forward to a weekend of long runs and recovery runs and a new week of  solid routine.
Poor Andrew seems to be suffering the most.  While his schedule pretty much was back to normal last week, thanks to my mom being there, he seems to be suffering from some pretty major separation anxiety.  Any time he sees me put on a coat, he is putting on his coat, and if I manage to get out, he gets super panicked and cries till I come back.  He also does not want me to leave him at preschool in the morning so that has been a big ordeal every single morning this week.  I am hoping by next week that all things will calm down and we will ALL be back on a routine.

Just to end things, it has been a slow day in the lab.  The last few days were fraught with pouring over the newest protocols and catching up on emails to the clients, who of course post holidays all want to send their samples to me NOW.  I am kind of digging today, a day to take a deep breath and catch up.  I came across a few articles about three year olds that were SO funny that i had to share.  Andrew turns three in a few months and I am already seeing some of these actions on the horizons. Check out Three is More Terrible than Two and also Three Year Olds are A**Holes for a good laugh.   Andrew has really started talking in earnest lately and putting together some really impressive thoughts into sentences.  His tantrums and his volume of talking has also turned itself up a notch or two.  I think you really notice these things when you are gone for a period of time and come back.  While I was gone, he sidled up to my hubby while they were sitting down eating.  A side note, he no longer likes to eat in his high chair and wants to eat sitting next to you, he is a big boy of course.  He calmly walked over, grabbed my husband's roll off of his plate, started to walk off and then turned around with a pointed finger and told my husband to "finish eating his corn" in such a manner that everyone in the house was laughing.  Also last night, upon eating at the little sit down place at our grocery store, he learned the joys of sweet and sour sauce.  I usually get sweet and sour chicken and get the sauce on the side, as he enjoys just the chicken, and we can split a meal and save some money.  While watching me take my chicken pieces and dipping them into the sauce, he started imitating me and figured out he liked the way the sauce tastes (he is also suddenly into ketchup dipping as well).  Well, he was not happy just dipping the chicken, he wanted the sauce straight up and proceeded to drink the entire cup of sauce before I could even bat an eye.  Let's just say since I am pretty sure that sauce has a high sugar content, we had one jacked up 2 year old till about 11 pm last night.  Yeesh.  Let the year of the threenager begin!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

My trip to San Diego

We have an annual meeting in San Diego this time every year, so last week I was super busy and computerless.  San Diego is where the company Bionano Genomics is and we are a service center for them.   The company is awesome in that it gets all of the users of their technology together, and we have meetings where we talk about what we are doing and what the company is up to.  Last year I went and got sick a few days after getting there with a chest cold.  I did get to sit on a beach and get a few runs in, but not as many as I had hoped.  This year, I had planned to meet up with several people that i have met through blogs and through FB, and also wanted to keep to my running schedule.  If you follow me on FB, you know that this was the trip from hell.

Let's begin on the day we got there.  Our condo was on the beach and I could NOT believe our luck.  It was beautiful, the weather was perfect, and even though I seemed to be getting a cold, it was just a run of the mill head cold.  We walked on the beach, watched the surfers, and got wonderful pork tacos.  As the day went on, my cold was getting worse, but I had a new feeling, a feeling of something not right with my tummy.  That night we had a meet and greet at the host hotel, and I knew something was off, way off.  The food they had there looked amazing, but it was making me super nauseous.  They had free beer and wine, but I wisely stuck with just water and no food.  While chatting with some users (of the technology of course), it hit me, find a bathroom NOW.  I didn't make it (no one saw thank goodness),  but was able to clean up and head back out for more socializing.  Not really what I wanted to do at this point, but we were thirty minutes from the condo, and we needed to be there mingling with potential customers and collaborators.  Luckily, my boss figured out pretty quickly something was wrong we me and we tried to get back to the condo as quick as we could.  One of the girls from our bioinformatics group not only is a mom,  but she also knew pressure points, so she was able to keep me from throwing up till we got back.  Once we got back, it was a super long night praying to the porcelain gods.  The next morning however, we had meetings all day and I had to just pull it together and carry on.

That was the theme for the week for me, just pull it together and carry on.  My stomach bug (which my whole family minus andrew seems to have) is still lingering a week later.  I laugh because my boss asked me how I was so sick, but appearing to be normal.  I told her I guess it is about being a mom, we don't get days off.  I just sat by the door during the meetings, and if I needed to rush out, I did.  Lucky for me, the bug decided to attack from the other end after the first day, and other than my tummy making very loud odd noises, most people had no clue I was sick.  My head cold was quick lived, and I was feeling better from that by thursday.  Here are some pics from my trip that don't include the inside of the master bathroom, which is where I spent a majority if my time :)
Here is the one and only meal I got to really enjoy.  Pork tacos from a small taco shop.  Amazing.  
The view from our condo was equally amazing.  I could watch surfers and sunsets all day.  I huge thank you to my boss for getting this condo for us!  She really is the best boss ever and I love working for her!
My new friend.  We hung out together quite a bit one day when I was just trying not to feel like death sunning on the rock.
I did get to go on two runs.  One was two miler on the campus of Bionano, and the other was a almost 7 miles on the campus of University of California, San Diego.  We got to see many of the art work installations there and the beautiful campus, as well as some of the Torrey Pines area.  I didn't get as many pics as I wanted as I was pretty much just trying to make it through and enjoy the run as much as I could.  It probably wasn't the best of ideas, but it was a great way to see most of the campus in a short amount of time.  One of these days I will get to run San Diego!!!!!
The last night that we were there, I was feeling a bit better, so we headed to Stone brewery.  Last year I did not get ANY San Diego beers, so this year I had to have some!  We all did flights, so we could try lots new beers before we made our final selections.  I of course gravitated towards the stouts, and found an Oatmeal stout that I LOVED!  I had to be super careful though, since my stomach still wasn't 100 percent, so I opted for every sip or two, to drink twice that much in water. My flight that I did (one isn't pictured but it was another stout) lasted me most of the night.  I did have one 8 oz stout before we left, but again I made sure I drank twice that much in water.  
This is Andrew or "big andrew" as I call him, not because he is big per se, but he is bigger than my andrew.  It's sometimes odd to have two andrews in my life that I both talk to daily.  He is my FSA at Bionano and we work together closely.  He is also a fencer and was pretty big in NCAA fencing when he was in college.  Some day, he will be a super star again, and I can say I knew him back when!  He is also a runner so he took us on our running tour of the campus.  
We finally headed back Sunday, and of course our first flight was late getting out.  We were lucky in that our connecting flight was also super late leaving, so we didn't miss it. I don't know what we would have done since the national championship football game was in town and most of the hotels were booked and overflowing.  Unfortunately, when we did get on the ground in Kansas, two of our vehicles had dead batteries (and were covered in ice) and it was almost 1 am, so after the in towners were dropped off, I just crashed at my boss's house.  I finally got to see my red heads yesterday and got my car jumped off and running as well.  Grammy headed back today and I am looking forward post holiday and post trip to getting back into a regular groove.  I am again hoping for an even better trip to San Diego next year!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Second week of long runs and my first speed work out!

I kind of am feeling back to normal running wise and schedule wise.  I am still just running four days a week (two during the week and a long run and recovery run on the weekend) and I am trying to get two days of cross training in. I was good this week, I did one day of a barre dvd so hoping to put that in the line up for cross training days.  I was fine the day after but holy moly DOMS!  I will start my kettlebell class the week after I get back from my trip this coming week (look out San Deigo, I am going to run you:) and i plan on getting in the pool monday, unless I move my run to monday.  I  am really excited to start out the year right with some cross training and keep that resolution under control.

I had my first speed work session this week after months of not doing any, and I have to admit it was MARVELOUS!  I did some warm up, some mileage, and then got to do some fartlek work for 20 minutes before I had a cool down.  If you don't do speed work, you need to, and fartleks are a fun way to incorporate some speed work in your schedule.  Most fartleks are short, with some recovery period (this time i did one minute at my 10 K pace and one minute of slow jogging recovery).  To me, I can do anything for a minute or two as long as I have some sort of walk or slow recovery after that one minute.

I had another day of long running this week, again the same plan only this time we did three sets of 8 minute walks/2 minute runs and then 30 minutes of running.  Makes my legs so much more happy to get to do the continuous running at the end versus the beginning.
Running with these two make me so absurdly happy!!!!!  The week has been kind of screwy with the days off and the holiday, and then the forecast of a major winter storm.  I ran Tuesday, had a day off with the kiddo wednesday, then ran again thursday when I had childcare, and then did my long run on friday to get it in before the supposed snow hit.  I had misread that little red's daycare was going to be closed on friday, but low and behold, they were open and i was off, so perfect day for me to get my long run done!  To top it off, after our nice long run, my BRF and I went into town and did some necessary stocking up and checking out of sales.  Of course the entire town had the same idea thanks to the forecast, so we had fun battling the crowds.  I kind of wanted to save my recovery run for after the snow so I could try out my yaktrax, but the temp was perfect this afternoon so I headed out and got it done.  
This is my new running coat I got from my mom.  She found it at Burlington coat factory. It's a brand I have never heard of but I took it on a test run today and i am very impressed.  Now to try it out when the wind chills are below zero!  

My mommy is here for the week (she came down early thanks to the storm predications) because we had a wedding to go to today, and because I am taking a business trip all next week for our annual Bionano user's group meeting in San Deigo.  I am beyond stoked.  Last year we had a condo inland, and on top of the meeting, got to do a ton of sight seeing.  My boss really is the most awesome boss ever because this year, she got us a condo right on the BEACH!  Not only are we going to have two and half days of meetings, but we are going to get half a day to sight see, and a WHOLE day to brewery hop.  I really am beside myself.  Last year I did not get to try ANY San Diego beers, and this year it is my mission!!!!  I am also going to try and meet up with some of my favorite bloggers and get some runs in.  Last year I tried to run by myself, and while it worked sort of, I was so afraid of getting lost that the most mileage I got was 5 miles.   Check out my recap of my trip last year here!  I hope I get to see some of my FB and blogger friends on my trip.  I sure am envious of their running weather, and the abundance of really awesome races, plus the breweries sound delightful!  
I will end this blog with a story.  Grammy (my mom) got andrew a portable DVD player for christmas.  I had bought over 200 DVDS off of an online yard sale local site, so this was a perfect gift, especially since our newer apple computer doesn't have a CD drive.  I have some movies on DVD from my young adult/childhood collection, and one was the movie Spirit which was about the wild horse and the wild west.  Well, andrew watched it mesmerized from beginning to end, until a very intense part, when Spirit and his native american counter part jump the cliff to get away from the soldiers that were chasing him.  Little red stands up  (we are in bed) and jumps as hard as he can straight into the wall.  It really was the funniest thing I have ever seen, but he was for sure hurt.  It appeared that his nose might be broken, as it immediately started swelling.  He had a bright red crease on his nose and his top lip seemed to be swelling as well.  Tony and I both had to fight back laughter to hold him while he cried.  Maybe this counts as another parenting fail?  Anyway, he seems fine now, and I don't think  it was broken as I had original thought, which is a good thing. He has several scratches on his lip and nose but seems no worse for the wear, thank goodness!!!!!  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Running by the numbers and Hello 2015

Happy New Years!!!!  This is how we spent new years.  Well, half of us that is. I can't believe we lasted till past midnight!  Most nights I am exhausted and ready to go to bed at 10.  
Little red skipped his nap so he was out by 6 pm.  Not sure if the fact that he got his flu shot yesterday had anything to do with it or not.  We were so proud of him, no crying or struggling.  Maybe it does get easier as they get older?  I was hoping he would be out for the night but that didn't happen.  He was wide awake at 9:30 pm till a little after 12 am.  
Everyone takes a bath with various thomas toys on new years around midnight right?
We rang in midnight doing Facetime with Grammy and Granddaddy.  Then we watched some Mater and hit the hay.  Party animals up in here!
I did have a couple of these. For a porter I thought it wasn't very full bodied, but still decent.  I don't regret buying a six pack of it, I guess.  It was a hard choice as they had the cranberry ginger shandy AND Blue moon has a new seasonal that has peach in it.  Next time my pretties:)
Now on to numbers.  I have seen so many cool posts about numbers and I am a number's geek so I just had to do one.  I promise this will be short and sweet!  I have been blown away by everyone's accomplishments and in the process, super proud of what I have accomplished as well.  Especially since I was told I shouldn't run ever and despite missing about a month of running, I am back.

Number of miles run this year=828

Biggest mileage month=100 miles in august

Number of races I did this year= 11 races
4 half marathons, 1 virutal half marathon, 1 trail 25 K,  2 10ks, 1 five mile trail race, a virtual 6 miler for 60 Feet (in support of STUFT mama and her 37 miles on her 37th birthday)and one trail 5 K with miss stella

Number of races I was suppose to do but couldn't because of this stupid injury=5 DNS (two trail 5 ks with miss stella, 2 halfs and an obstacle course race)

Half PR=PR in each half except Hospital Hill and finished the year with a half PR at 2:09:48 thanks to the most awesome pacer EVER.  I know I am super lucky to improve with each race and I totally understand that might not happen every race.

PR in the 10 K=with 59:08

PB= the Speedy PD course with a 1:01:24.  That is a hot beast of a course and I improved my time by over 3 minutes from last year.

No 5 K PR or PB.  Most of the 5 Ks I raced last year were on the same weekends as my bigger races in 2014.  Looks like that is going to be the same next year as well:(  I think that maybe that is just a sign from above and the 5 K isn't my favorite distance to race anyway.  For racing I think I like 10 Ks the best and then half marathons.  

So there you have it.  Some of my favorite numbers from the year.  I don't want to count up the days I didn't run because it makes me sad.  I did get one age group medal but it was such a tiny race that I don't count it.  I look forward to an epic year in 2015 and more importantly an injury free year!