Sunday, June 28, 2015

The weekly runs -Training week 5, 16 weeks till Chicago

I just had to brag a moment before I talk about my runs.  I am SO proud of my hubby for getting back into lifting.  For Father's day, he ordered a new weight belt and he was showing it off for me.  He made me promise not to put this pic on FB or instagram, but my blog is neither so it doesn't count:)  He is really making big changes in his life and his health and I am really, really proud.  
Andrew thinks I am not doing enough weight in my strength training.  In this pic he is adding his body weight to my side plank.  I have to admit, the planking, while still very shaky on the third and final round, is getting a little better.  

Monday-4 miles, easy pace

Tuesday-6 miles of tempo: 1 mile warm up, four miles of 5 minutes at Marathon pace (10:00-10:20 range with an average of 10:13), 5 minutes of easy pace, 1 mile cool down


Thursday-Strength training 3 rounds of all exercises

Friday-4 miles, easy pace

Saturday-13 miles, easy pace

Sunday-Strength training

Total miles: 27 miles

My body seems to be getting use to the heat but I am glad that most of my runs thus far are at easy pace.  I may be forced to do speed work on the mill, but maybe we will have some more tolerable nights.  I did try sleeping in another room friday night, so I got a good night's sleep, which helped in getting up early, but I need to get up even earlier, I am afraid.  I see some 4 ams in stella and I's future.  

Well, have a great weekend and a great week ahead!  I am looking forward to my mother in law coming to town with her best friend. I am going to take off Tuesday to show them around town and do some fun stuff.  We also get friday off so it will be a lightish week at work. Have a fun and safe 4th of July y'all!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Saturday musings

I have started several blogs this week and then never finished them.  Bad me.  Still super busy at work, although I did have one morning off to take poor baby D to the vet.  I had been dealing with his allergies this spring with essential oils and his antihistamine, and while it was working for a while, the flare up got the best of him and it was time to see a professional.  I HATE having to put him on any steroids, but the decision was made to put him on a super low dose, and try and get that down to the minimum number of days on that super low dose.  We also are investigating some new skin products for dogs to increase his skin barrier to keep allergens out.  The good news is that my vet truly thinks we are only dealing with seasonal allergies, since all symptoms were gone this fall and winter.  I am also going to incorporate some fish oil back into deuce's diet to help from the inside out.  I like having a strategy, even if does include some very low dose steroids.  So far we haven't seen any of the crazy steroid symptoms we usually see, and he does seem a bit happier about his ear now. That is the part i hate the most, the gunky ear.  We all thought the gunky ear was truly a sign of a food allergy, but nope, it seems seasonal as well.  We both do think he for sure had a food component as well, probably an allergy to chicken, but, this time  around, all symptoms point to seasonal.  I just want my baby feeling 100 % again:(

My runs have been pretty good and even keeled lately.  The heat has been pretty bad this week, but we got a reprieve on Tuesday, so i moved my speed work to that day instead of wednesday and did back to back runs.  Wednesday was suppose to be back in the 100s, and while I can do high temps slowly (or hit the mill), I prefer speed work to be done at the prescribed pace.  I had no issues hitting my paces, but it was different doing marathon pace instead of 10 k or even half pace.  I had a one mile warm up followed by 4 miles of alternating 5 minutes at marathon pace (targeting 10-10:20) followed by 5 minutes of recovery, then one mile of cool down.  I LOVE doing speed work during longer runs, because it makes the miles fly by.  I know it is going to be hard not to start out racing at my half pace, because it was hard to stay in that 10-10:20 range just for a few miles.  I am so glad Chicago has pace groups because I am going to need it!
Saturday morning was long run morning.  I love this pic of stella post long run.  Caught her with her tongue out.  This was just a magical perfect long run. I headed out on Military trail, which is pretty hilly, yet shaded.  I left at the same time I left last weekend, even though I got up earlier.  It took me that long to down my cran-raz UCAN.  Still having problems getting it down, and it is taking at least 10 or more minutes of me constantly drinking and trying not to gag to get it down.  I LOVE it though, and love the way it makes my body feel.  I didn't fuel until mile 7 this week, and probably could have gone longer.  I did feel the need to refuel at around mile 12, but made myself hold off and keep going.  Other than having to find a nice tall bit of grass to squat behind, this run was just one that leaves you smiling for hours.  Well, until I walked into the house and found that my chocolate milk, specifically for after work outs had been consumed.  We had an over night visitor and my guess is he assumed he could drink the rest.  We WILL be having a discussion about this as soon as I see him again.  Totally uncool dude, totally uncool.  

To put me in a better mood, we headed to Manhattan post run to get doughnuts and chocolate milk.  Might as well kill two birds with one stone right?  Andrew finally is eating and loving the doughnuts.  He specifically asked for a cookie monster doughnut (the blue berry one) and ate it's eyes off.  We also headed to our used book store to get some books for daddy with his book credit.  Andrew and I made out like a bandit with me getting two running books and him getting four train books.  Daddy ended up with one book and no more credit:)  Got to love it!

it says Love is Love but it kind of looks like Love is Lever LOL!
I wanted to end my blog with a non running item.  Yesterday the Supreme Court handed down a decision to make gay marriage legal.  I am very, very happy for all of my friends in same sex relationships.  They deserve every right that tony and I get in a marriage.  I hope this is the beginning of great things for our country.  It does bother me that we have to  have labels though.  I am hoping some day our labels can just be human or dog or cat versus gay, straight, transgendered.  We are all people and the Lord loves us all just as we are.  Congrats to all of my friends who will be getting married soon or got married yesterday!  

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The weekly runs: Week 4 of Chicago marathon training

Not going to lie, the humidity has been kicking my ass this week.  I keep waiting for my body to adjust but it hasn't yet.  It is beyond me on how I am ever going to get back to speed work or how I did so much speed work last year during the summer.  Here is the weekly runs for Coach Jenny:

Monday: 5 miles easy pace

Tuesday: Rest day (dinner and a beer with a former professor)

Wednesday: 5 miles easy pace

Thursday: Strength training: 3 rounds of all exercises

Friday: 4 miles easy pace

Saturday: 12 miles, easy pace

Sunday: Strength training 3 rounds of all exercises

Saturday's long run was a very tough one. I can usually gut out most all weather conditions, but heat and humidity just knock me out.  I planned ahead with a big water bottle with grape Nuun.  I decided to take stella with the plan of if it got too nasty, I would call my hubby to come pick up stella and take her home.  Let's just say by the end of the run, we were walking 2 minutes and running 8.  I never felt like either of us was in danger of overheating, but I wanted to stay ahead of it for both of us.  We consumed together the whole bottle of water + Nuun and I had stella laying down in every puddle i could find.  Sucks for us because the farmers aren't irrigating much this summer due to all of the rain, so we don't have our big kid sprinklers to run through or the huge puddles they make on the road.
This was a pic I sent my BRF to prove I was hydrating during my run LOL!

I did try another flavor of UCAN today (pomegranate/blueberry), and had trouble getting it down.  I am hoping that the flavor I did like (cran-raz) and just ordered won't make me so sick to drink down.  I think the fact that I got up earlier was a factor as my tummy is not settled early in the morning.  I was gagging about half way into the 16 oz, but managed to get it all down.  I am not sure how getting up even earlier is going to affect this gag reflex that I seem to have when drinking UCAN.  I felt great during my run until about 6.5 miles and started getting brain fuzz, so fueled with my chomps.  Most of my previous 12 mile long runs included me fueling at least twice, so I think this product is working.  My legs felt great, but I think 6-7 miles is about as far as I want to push it.  I felt great afterwards as well and rehydrated with another half bottle of water + Nuun and then had my serving of chocolate milk and my quest bar.

I did learn today that I need to get up even earlier.  I hit the road at 6 am and the sun was already up and it was already hot.  While the humidity is pretty horrible earlier in the morning, I think for my safety and stella's if she gets to come, that we need to be out on the road by 5 or 5:30 am.  That means, gulp, getting up at 4:30 at least.  I know it needs to be done and I have discussed this with the hubby.  I can't be a zombie so I need to get to bed earlier.  Little red was in bed by 10:30 last night but that still isn't early enough.   I think i am just going to have to sneak off to the guest room on friday nights and hit the hay minus the kiddo and hubby.  That way at least, I can get to bed earlier and not wake anyone else up when I get up.  Not ideal but necessary.

Well, have a great weekend everyone!  Try and stay cool!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Guest Blog post:Tookie Day-How to run and be in shape in your 60s

Good Saturday to you!  Today I am letting my mom take over my blog.  My mom is an inspiration to me and others, so I had to have her take over and answer some questions I had about running/working out and just staying in shape for the older athlete.  Mom is in her mid 60s and still going strong with her working out/running/walking.
What made you want to start run? and what did you do to start running? 

When I joined the LIFT, I was trying the different classes they offered.  They offered the couch to 5K  program, and I knew Michelle had used this program, so I decided I would try.  While doing the program, I drove a mile from the house (to get an idea of distance) and would walk/run this until I knew I could do 2 miles.   Then, I added a little over a half mile for a total of 2.5 miles.  To be able to run/walk this from the house and back made me confident I could walk/run a 5 K.  We did a 5K after we finished the program with my goals being to finish and not be last.  I accomplished my goal:)

What are some challenges you face running in your 60s?
The biggest challenge is not having anyone to train with.  I have a friend that I met on the track at the gym and we walk together 3 days a week anywhere from 3 to 5 miles.  This keeps me in shape, but I don’t have anyone to run with.

How hard has it been to run being a ex-smoker? 
I am sure it has a lot to do with my breathing, you can't smoke for 46 years and give them up and expect to breath like a 16 year old.    (Note: She quit cold turkey.  That is super will power in my book).   Unfortunately, breathing  issues are also my age.  I have been working on a breathing exercise I saw on one of the running post on FB.  You take a deep breath on 5 steps and exhale on 5 steps.  That seems to help.  (Note by me:  The cold also seems to hurt mom's lungs a lot worse than others.  I am not sure if that is smoking related or that is because in TN, it doesn't get as cold as it gets here in KS).

What other exercises do you do to compliment your running?
I do aqua sculpt 3 times a week , it is a great work out with weights, noodles, and constant movement.  I also do Barre class 2 times a week and love this class. On the days I have Barre, I go early and walk on the track for a little over a mile, then do my class, then my friend and I walk downtown.

Tell me about your most favorite race that you have done?
My most favorite has to be Running with the Cows that I just did while Michelle did the half marathon.  All the races I had previously done had been with small groups, so imagine how I felt lining up with 625 people.  The race was so cute with black and white cows everywhere, and it was so well organized.  I enjoyed the fact that I just melted into the crowd and felt no pressure from anyone.  I ran when I could and walked when I wanted to walk.  I really believe I ran more in this one that I had in others.  I finished 5th in my age group and 458 out of 625.

I also have to mention the Bad to the Bone 5 K I did with Michelle .She was injured so wasn’t back to her normal running.  BOY did she push me!!!  I did set a record on my time and was 1st in my age and won the kids a 10-12 lb turkey.

Favorite running gear?
I love having music, and my belt (it's a flip belt) that holds my phone. Thanks to The Running Company in Manhattan for getting me in the right shoe that makes all the difference in the world.  This isn’t really running gear, but I love my Fitbit and the friends (she is slightly addicted and panics when it doesn't work:)
that I have that motivate me every day to do better.

Any advice you would like to leave the readers with?
Never give up or give in.  Try new things, get in classes that will push you, always be willing to try something new.  Try to find a friend that will walk or run with you.  Do a couch to 5K program and run at least one 5K to prove to yourself that you can do it.  One thing I have always done is be around young people.  Surround yourself with young people they will motivate and inspire you.

Great advice mom!  As always, check with your doctor before starting a work out program to make sure it is right for you.  I am so glad (and jealous) that mom has a barre class to attend, as well as aqua sculpt and water aerobics (and at one time zumba), as those types of work outs are easier on joints.  They can also be adjusted in intensity for the best work out for you and your body.  Mom works hard with the trainers at the LIFT to make sure the exercises she is doing are done with proper form, which makes me so happy.  In our community as well, the trainers are very good about adapting exercises in group  classes to your skill level and age and the intensity you desire. I have always felt that their group classes are very inclusive to any age (check out Flint Hill's Fitness for some AWESOME classes).  Mom, as always you are my best friend, my inspiration and I can't wait to see you run more 5 ks and maybe some day a half:)

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Almost friday!

Where has this week gone?  Almost the weekend already, hard to believe.  We are still super slammed at work which again, is a very, very good thing.  I have had two runs, a rest night, and a strength training night thus far.
my helper as I plank.  he has my pony tail and is yanking it.  So much fun working out with a 3 year old around
Speaking of strength training, I am up to three rounds of the 6 or so exercises Coach Jenny has me do.  I am pretty proud because even though I run, I am in horrible shape strength wise.  I did have a bit of a scare last sunday.  Upon doing the floating lunges, my right hip all of the sudden, had a searing pain in it.  It was bad enough it took my breath away.  I had jump lunges in my list to do so skipped those and completed all of the other exercises that did not involve using that hip.  After the immediate pain, it just felt sore and after a day or so, the soreness disappeared.  I was pretty worried that I had done something bad, but in the end, I was fine.  

I am enjoying my work outs though disappointed in my ability to up my plank time.  Planks have always been my biggest challenge and have gotten more so after my pregnancy. I fear i will never get that strength back that I lost carrying a red headed bowling ball.  I am trying not to dwell and celebrate what I can do.  
The weather has been all over the place this week but one thing is certain, the humidity is here to stay.  I have been really struggling when the dew point gets in the upper 60s.  I have instituted a walk run plan so I don't over heat and pass out . I also have been religiously taking my water bottle with a NUUN tablet it in.  
Add caption
I have needed my runs this week though for my soul.  This night was a tough run as I found out one of my newer students had passed away.  I don't know exactly what happened, but it appears it may have been suicide.  He never showed any signs of depression or anything, so I am at a loss as to what happened.  We had seen him that sunday at our lab party and he seemed fine.  I am still struggling with some feelings.  I have replayed every single conversation we had ever had to try and remember anything that would have or should have thrown up the red flags. I can't remember anything.  Rest in peace sweet Vaughn.  You were a good kid and I am praying for your family.   
I sure have been hugging and kissing this little man a ton this week.  I know you can't control everything that happens in their life, but I can for now. 
And a Deuce update.  His allergies are back, big time.  I don't know what else to do.  It seems the zyrtec isn't working this summer.  I am trying to treat with essential oils, mainly lavendar for any skin wounds he is creating, and melaluca for his ear issue.  So far it seems to be helping, but not curing.  I am going to try a little while longer before I give up and go back to steriods.  I love this dog so much and just want him to be allergy free.  

And to end on a much better note, Uncle Cayce has moved out officially.  He found a little apartment that fit his price range and allows his little dog.  He finally got everything out this week and we have been enjoying our family of three again.  We wish him the best of luck and will be there to guide and assist as we can. He is only a few blocks away and still comes over a few nights a week for family dinner.   

Have a great Friday and weekend!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

The weekly runs Chicago week 3

While most people just started training for Chicago, I am on week three.  We are taking things slow and I am totally fine with that.  

The heat and rain continue.  If it isn't really super hot and humid, it is raining cats and dogs.  Manhattan, where I work is actually under the threat of major flooding.  I don't think I have ever seen the area rivers so full.  

These are pictures I took off of FB so not mine at all, just borrowing.  The first pic is of the damn this week and the second is where the water was when we had the big flood in 1993.
Today's long run was no exception.  I had planned on getting up around 6 am and fueling with another flavor of UCAN and heading out again.  When I got up, the radar had a HUGE thunderstorm headed right for us.  I saw green, dark green and yellow.  I decided that wasn't safe, since I needed to do 11, so cuddled up, went back to sleep, and figured i would awake to the sound of rain.  Unfortunately or fortunately, it never did anything, so I wasted quite a bit of time, but the temp was still nice and low when we finally headed out.  I am very glad to report that i really like the cranberry/raspberry flavor of UCAN, and will probably be purchasing that flavor as my new pre work out fuel.  I didn't gag at all and was able to suck it down fairly quickly with a straw.  I still didn't have any problems during the run with GI issues or feeling tired, although I felt a little brain fuzz at mile 6, so went ahead and fueled.  It rained from about mile 3 till the very end, but it was a nice gentle rain that probably made it cooler than it was.  Some guy drove by us on our route and yelled out the window, "You are going to get wet little girl", to which I yelled " I won't melt".  I guess i should be happy he thought I was a kid?  Anyway, I have got to get up earlier if these summer long runs are going to be bearable.  It worked this time, but probably won't the next time.  
A very pretty and weird weed I saw.  They are all in bloom this week!

Here are the weekly runs for my coach:

Monday: 5 miles, easy pace

Tuesday: Strength training, 2 rounds of all of the exercises.  Stick a fork in me, this work out is killer

Wednesday: 6 miles, easy pace

Thursday:  Rest day

Friday: 4 miles, easy pace

Saturday: 11 miles, easy pace

Sunday: Strength training, 2 rounds of all exercises

Total weekly mileage: 26

I feel great, a little knee soreness that comes and goes.  It even rotates from knee to knee, so I guess that it is good that it isn't just one leg?  I haven't ever had knee pain, so this is new to me.  I tried wearing my iniji socks today on my long run, as I am getting a huge blood blister/callus on my right foot.  I have to admit, I didn't have any soreness in my toe after 11 wet miles, so guess I need to get more than one pair (or constantly wash that one pair).  My BRF swears by them and made me buy a pair and I am sold now!

Have a great sunday and a great week!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Happy 3rd Birthday Andrew!

It has been a very exciting week!  My little red turned three on friday!
I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be a mom.  A dog mom, yes, 6 times over, but not a human mom!  He has made this whole experience so awesome, and he is a super blessing.  When God decided it was time, he blessed us and I thank him every day for deciding we were ready, even though I was convinced we weren't!
I love being his mommy!  Year 2 has been so rich and rewarding, and I am ready for what year three brings us!
We had decided not to really have a party per se.  He has tons of toys, and he doesn't need more for sure.  Grammy had made sure he had plenty of gifts to open, and I had gotten several more practical things at Day out with Thomas.  We decided we would do cake at the preschool, and then have a fun day saturday in KC at the Science museum and the train station. 
Well, you know the saying about the best laid plans of mice and men?  Yep, had to put Sir Stubby in the shop for a few days to fix the AC.  We had had a pretty mild summer thus far, but in true KS fashion, it had arrived full force this week, and Andrew and I couldn't handle the heat anymore.
I had gotten pretty good at pulling the wind blown look off, because we went everywhere with the window down.  Lucky for us, we got a sweet 2015 Dodge Dart to rent.  It has nice AC and I LOVE driving it around.  Wish I could afford a car payment right now!  We only travel with two dogs (the old men have a wonderful dog sitter that stays with them when we have to leave), so we could totally make it work.  Oh well, maybe someday.  Should have my student loans paid off in another year or so.
Hubby decided at the last minute that little red needed his first big wheel.  I had several as a kid and wore them out.  Mine had a brake on it as well so I could go full speed, pull the brake and then spin around.  Guess that isn't safe anymore?  We made the mistake of opening presents before school.  Lesson learned, wait till after school if you want said child to actually go to school:)

I brought the cake after nap time.  This is the cake that andrew has been asking for, for at least a year.  While it was WAY more than we needed for his class, I had told him for a solid year that he could have it for his birthday, and I just couldn't buy just cupcakes after promising him.
The cake was a HUGE hit.  I really apologized like 100 times to the teachers.  They assured me they were about to let them out to play till the parents came to pick them up, and that it would be fine.
I even found a Thomas ballon when I went to pick up the cake.  I wisely had it in the car, so he had yet another surprise.
I would have to say it was a pretty perfect birthday.  Until this:
I kind of forgot that the dealership had my keys as in my house keys.  I tried breaking in but that didn't work (which is a good thing, right?).  The dogs were really confused as to why we weren't coming in.  Andrew was kind of upset that he couldn't get into the house to play with his new toys.  We did have fun waiting for daddy to come home from work looking for roly polys, which andrew calls Polys.  We had his favorite dinner of cheese pizza, which seems to be my new favorite night before a long run meal.  

Saturday, my long run got screwed up (next blog post) so we didn't get to KC, but we did get to Topeka to Chucky Cheese.  It was quite the experience and he was super overwhelmed for a while but then got over it and started having fun.  I have to admit, us adults had fun doing some the games too.  In the end andrew had enough tickets for a very cheap plastic monster truck that probably cost a quarter to make but isn't that the fun of it?

We also went to Barnes and Noble to get a wooden thomas with the money his grandma mobbs sent, but in the end, he chose two Thomas books that luckily for him, were on the clearance table.  He still has half of his birthday money, and I am so proud of him for being a bargain shopper!

Happy Birthday little red!  Thanks for making me a mommy and I LOVE you very much!  

Wednesday, June 10, 2015


Summer is officially here.  We are getting super hot days and super intense thunderstorms.  

This was taken out on the prairie at my boss's house.  You could see the storms coming in from the north and you could feel the atmosphere change and temperature drop.  

We have been taking advantage of the cooler temps that usually happen after 8ish.  The park is a block away so we are there pretty much every night.   I think that is why I decided to go ahead and run early Monday night.  The heat was there, but the humidity was not, so I figured I would be safe.  I left stella at home and headed out with some NUUN in my little water bottle I tuck in my waist band.  I didn't sweat the whole run, and while the sun beat down, I felt good.  Unfortunately after the run, I was not so good.  As soon as I stopped, i started profusely sweating and felt very nauseated.  It took me at least an hour to fully recover, and I was a little worried about how I felt.  When I opened my blogs for reading today this one from one of my favorite bloggers NYCrunningmama came up.  You can read the full blog here.  It is very, very good and should be taken to heart.  We as runners have to be careful in the heat and humidity.  We have to take into account a slowing of paces.  We have to pay attention to our bodies and protect ourselves.  Today it is feeling like 99 out there and the dewpoint is currently at 64.  While I know the temp will go down later tonight when I run, the dewpoint will still probably be high because the humidity will go back up.  Same for early morning runs here in KS, the humidity is so high in the morning pre dawn that the dew point is usually in the dangerous zone.  I am going to put on my earbuds and listen to my podcasts (which slow my pace down and that is a good thing), leave stella at home, and probably do some walk/run mileage.  Heat is not to be played with and I only need one reminder this year to respect it!!!!