Wednesday, March 30, 2011

10 mile a skirt...

This morning I had a 10 mile run on the schedule. It was pretty warm out, so I thought I would give my new running skirt a chance. I have been wearing the same running shorts for years and am so tired of them. I have been looking for new shorts but have really been having a tough time. I decided I was going to give the running skirt a chance. This has been the new big thing lately and I never really thought of myself as a running skirt kind of girl.

I have this Skirt Sports Gym Girl running skort. It has shorts underneath.
I have worn it to do weight workouts, but not to run. I am very particular about things and don't really like change. When I find something I like, I stick to it.
So trying something this new was a big deal. I got dressed in my skirt and my Lululemon Run Swiftly Long Sleeved shirt. Not a great picture, but you get the idea.

I started off on my run and it took about 10 minutes until the skirt settled into the right place. After a bit, it really started to feel good!! It didn't ride up, fall down or chafe. I was zipping right along. About mile 4, I ran into Trevor - he was out with the dogs. We ran a few miles together and then he got to where he had parked his car and I got to my turn around point. I told him I would see him at home in about an hour and headed back the way I had come.

I stopped at the bathrooms in the park to refill my water. As I looked in the mirror, I noticed an issue with my pink skirt....

I am a major league sweater. My running friends call me "sweaty". Hot weather, cold weather...I sweat. Alot. It is embarrassing. I stink out my clothes long before I wear then out. I usually wear dark colored clothes so that the sweat stains can't be seen. There was a HUGE sweat spot on the front of the skirt....sweaty cooter (as we call it in my house. Its bad enough that we have a name for it). I figure I share some embarassing things here, so why not this. I mean, someone, somewhere out there HAS to have this same issue. I was horrified. I still have 5 more miles to run and it looked like I had peed my skirt!!!

All I could do was laugh, so I just started running again. When I would see people, I always said hi and tried to engage in a little conversation so they would look at my face and not my skirt!!!

I also think I saw the missing cobra from the Bronx Zoo on the path.

Well, actually, I think it was just a small garden snake, but it made me scream all the same.

I finally made it home without any more issues. I walked in and Trevor asked how I liked the skirt. I told him I loved it but really needed it in black because there was one issue. He looked at me and just started laughing. Then he told me not to worry, he was sure no one noticed because they were too busy looking at the pimple on my forehead! Even worse!!!

The doggies thought the sweat was great and licked my legs while I took this picture that captures my sweating issue...

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Seasonal Affect Disorder

SAD. I have it. This time of year is so difficult for me. I think my years in Boulder, Colorado (where it is sunny over 300 days per year) ruined me. I now live in a place that rains over 300 days per year (at least that is how it feels).

I look at the forecast and for two weeks out, all it shows is rain. They find all different ways to say rain without saying rain: showers, drizzle, intermittent showers, partly cloudy, passing showers, rain - heavy at times, and my personal favorite - party sunny (which is always a lie). Then, sometimes they will just be honest and every day it will say "rain".

About a month ago, Trevor and I were craving carbohydrates in much larger portions that usual. Every night I was stopping at the store to pick up something to curb those cravings. One night I asked Trevor if we were experiencing seasonal affect disorder and he said yes.

I moved on from the food for a while and had a little shopping addiction that seemed to take over for the carbohydrate cravings. I have been on a Lululemon shopping spree. Between my birthday gifts of cash and gift cards and winning that jacket, I have had plenty of opportunities to visit the local stores. I finally hit the point where they weren't bringing in new stock fast enough to meet my addictive needs, so I have petered out on that (so Trevor hopes).

Since I was feeling content from carbohydrates and warm, cozy and comfy from my new threads, I decided that I needed some bedtime comfort. We haven't gotten new pillows, sheets or bedspreads in forever. Gus, our kitty who passed away in October, had a way of ruining these things with his claws. So we never got new stuff because I knew it would get shredded. The three kitties we have now are not so destructive. So, yesterday I bought new sheets, pillows and a comforter. Last night was the most comfortable my bed has been in years. I felt like I was sleeping in a hotel.

So, today, while is it pouring rain, I am content in my Lululemon studio crops, last year's fun times hoodie and cool racer back.

At home, I have the most comfortable bed waiting for me:

Right now, it is pouring rain outside, but the weather app on my phone says that sunny and 60 is just about 10 days away. I sure hope so, and so does my wallet!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bring back the feeling

I have been working on a project and was looking for some high resolution pictures of myself participating in sports. All my pictures were taken with a cell phone and are not high resolution. I remembered that our friend Doug's sister, Iwa, took a ton of pictures of us at Ironman Canada. I knew she would have at least one good shot. I emailed her and she sent over some pictures.

I had only seen one of these before and wasn't prepared for the feelings that would overwhelm me when I opened these up. It took me right back to the moments they were taken. What a gift.

This was the day before, at the expo. I was totally freaking out, wondering what the hell I was doing. The lake was totally choppy and I was scared to death about the swim. I was smiling here, but inside I was totally sick.
The day of the race, I finished the swim, got changed and got onto my bike. Starting the bike ride is always a very emotional time for me, no matter what distance triathlon we are doing. I always feel like the hardest part is over and I am usually overwhelmed with pride. Every time I get into that water, I am afraid. To get through the swim is a major accomplishment. Every. Single. Time.

Leading up to Ironman, I had my arm injury and wasn't even sure I would be able to swim. Add to that my usual apprehension and then the days of worrying about the choppy water. When I saw all our friends, I screamed and yelled to them "I made it out of the water!!!". I would have to say this was one of the happiest and most relieving moments of my life. These pictures capture exactly what I was feeling.

And then the run. By the time this picture was taken, I had been moving for over 10 hours and I still had about 25 miles to go. I felt good and was again thrilled to see familiar faces. We were so blessed to have such great people there to support us and cheer us on. They are the reason I was able to smile and able to enjoy this moment. I felt completely loved. Again, this picture captures that.
Every once in a while I remember that I completed this Ironman and remember that I can do anything I set my mind to. These pictures will serve as a great reminder.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Lovin' the Lululemon

I've talked about it here before, I love Lululemon. I love their clothes, I love their stores, I love everything about them. I could totally work at one of their stores and would wear all Lululemon every day. I love how their stuff fits and I really love how I feel when I put it on.

The last few weeks I have been on a bit of a spree. I got some fun running clothes and some other comfy stuff. The running shirts I got claim to be really anti stink. I am doing a little challenge with that and will post more info about that in a day or so.

I am a fan on facebook of the local Lululemon stores. The store in Tualatin - Bridgeport Village - does a caption contest. They post a picture of an item, tell you what words need to be included and offer the item as a prize to the best caption. On Friday, they posted a picture of their Down Time Jacket:

I gave it my best shot...Here is the facebook link to the captions.

I waited and waited and this morning I got the message that I had won!! Trevor and I headed down to collect my winnings. They had the jacket in black, grey, white with grey stripes and another pattern of blue/black and white. I tried them all on and we decided the white with grey stripes was the best option. I was SO excited, the girls who worked there were so excited too. It was just such a great experience. Of course, we made some other purchases while we were there.

Here is how the jacket one of the girls at Lulu said - it looks like it was made for me. The only thing better than buying some new Lululemon gear is WINNING some new Lululemon gear.

I cannot wait to wear this jacket for all kinds of things. I can already tell it is going to be one of my favorites...Thanks Lulu!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

And the training continues

I've been training for the Eugene Marathon since the middle of Jan. I have been following my plan. I've had a few wrenches thrown into the mix. I had a nasty sinus infection early on, I didn't miss any workouts because of it - it just made those workouts completely unenjoyable. Then, I had my stomach issue, which knocked out two good workouts. I missed a 20 miler because of that. The last few weeks I've been dealing with an IT band issue and a lower back/pelvic issue. That caused about 4 missed workouts including two long runs (a 20 miler and a 15 miler). I ran on Thursday with little pain (4.5 miles) and again today with no pain (7 miles). Yay!!

Monday I am going to jump right back into training with speed work, tempo run on Wed and long run (20 miler) on Friday. I was so tempted to just do my 15 miler today but I am working on being smarter these days! I know that the goal isn't to run 15 miles, the goal is to run 26.2 on May 1st - faster than ever before. With that in mind, I am allowing some healing to happen.

Hopefully the healing continues and Monday I will be good as new...or maybe BETTER than new!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

A lot of pain

Starting in high school, I have had recurrent back pain. I remember specific incidents over the year when I have had pain that shot right through me. About 7 years ago, after I had started to run on a regular basis, my chiropractor discovered that I have a leg length difference. My left leg is about 9 mm shorter than my right. I wear a lift in my shoe that helps with this.

Since that discovery, I still have back pain issues but only every year or two. The last couple years, my dr tells me that my problem is weakness in my glutes and hamstrings. I have chronic IT band issues and my quads are always tight and always take the brunt of my activity. My glutes and hamstrings are NEVER sore, even after a marathon or Ironman.

Last week, my IT bands really started bothering me and on Friday morning, my back completely seized up. I was 3 miles into a 6 mile run and kept hoping my back would loosen up. It didn't and I found myself hobbling home.

I headed to the dr, hoping for some relief. He said my pelvis was all twisted up - seems that my quads just can't take anymore and so my back and pelvis work to compensate. I guess they are tired of doing that.

I have been training much harder than ever this time around. I have a specific time goal for the Eugene Marathon on May 1 and the weakness in the back of my legs is now really becoming an issue. I guess I can't ignore it anymore. I have exercises to do and honestly, I can't explain why I haven't done them

I will not be running this weekend and probably not until the middle or end of this week. It hurts so badly that I can hardly move sometimes. Last night, I got no sleep, it hurts to move. After a long, hot shower, things loosened up a bit this morning. I go back to the dr on Monday for some more adjusting and we will see how I am then.

If you have ever had back pain, you know how badly it sucks. Nothing feels good - sitting, standing, laying down - all hurts. I am really hoping that in the next few days, things ease up a bit because I am tired of not feeling good. My friend Todd always says "had a weak back, a week back" anytime I mention something about my back hurting. By this time next week, I hope that I can say that and that I am feeling better!!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

37 and a half marathon

Its been a couple of weeks since I posted, but so much has been going on!

Last Saturday was my 37th Birthday. That is impossible to believe. You know you are getting old when people say things like "How old are you? 29? (wink, wink)". If it wasn't obvious that I was over 29, that wouldn't be a joke. Sigh. Oh well, I guess we all get older, if we are lucky!

The week before my birthday was full of preparations for the Max Muscle Vancouver Half Marathon! This is the 2nd year we have put on this event. It was less stressful this year, but still a lot of work!

To make matter worse, we had snow earlier in the week and the forecast for Sunday kept changing. It was supposed to rain, then be clear, then be icy or snow or a mix. Friday and Saturday were FREEZING!

Saturday morning I ran the half marathon route to mark it for Sunday morning's race. It was about 15 degrees and I was really really cold. It was a tough run - my IT band started bugging me around mile 5. This was the last chance I would have to mark the course and that had to be done, so I struggled through.

While out on the route, I saw a woodpecker who started to make noise when I ran by him. I am sure he was singing me happy birthday! Then, I passed a friend of mine. I was on a committee with her this year and am friends on facebook. As she ran past she wished me a happy birthday, which I loved! Without facebook, she would have never known it was my birthday!!

I finished up my run and headed home to clean up. We had packet pick up at our store all day long. It is quite possibly the busiest day of the year for us, with over 100 people coming through the doors to get their stuff for Sunday's run. There are lots of questions, lots to handle. I love meeting all the people who will be participating and getting to know them.

I had several birthday visits during the day. Trish and Doug brought me a cake and a present. Heather and her kids brought me a balloon and a bag of pretzel m&ms!!! YUM!! I had so many birthday wishes, my email and my phone were going nuts all day long!!

After the store closed at 5, we got all the last minute things done so we wouldn't have much to do on Sunday morning. We ordered some take out food, headed home and relaxed.

Trevor gave me the best gift for my bday. When we were looking for another dog, we came across a picture of Buster on the shelter's website. That picture was the reason I fell in love with Buster and the reason why he lives with us now. I have always wished I had a copy of that picture. Trevor tracked it down and got it for me. It was hanging on the wall the night before my birthday. It made me cry because I love that doggie so much.

Sunday morning, we were up around 4 am and out the door by 5. Luckily, there was no snow, no ice and even no rain. It was very cold and windy, but dry. I set up the course while Trevor set up the start/finish line. We were ready by the time people started showing up.

Apparently there was an issue with google maps. It wasn't mapping our address correctly so we got a bunch of phone calls from people who were lost. That's fun. We started on time, well, maybe about 3 minutes late - there was a line at the port-a-potties and I wanted to wait for them!!

The race started and off they went - just under 200 people out to run and walk 13.1 miles!! I love it when the race starts, there is always a little break in the action when things are quiet and calm because everyone is gone!!

The event went off without any issues. It was SO COLD! I cannot believe that over 40 volunteers stood out in that weather all day long. Amazing. We are so fortunate to have such great friends.

As usual,I did the annoucing and Trevor did the running around/damage control. We have a good system.

We were home and asleep on the couch by about 3 pm. Exhausted. What a great way to spend a birthday weekend...