Maybe even two. First off there's this:
That's right. That would be the infamous light, sitting there looking all pretty in the corner of my flower bed. And who put you there my sweet little dear to shine your light for the world so bright and clear? That would be me! (I'm sorry. Did I just resort to rhyming?) I chiseled my way through apparently where the previous owners thought was a good place to lay down some concrete because, you know, everybody needs a good 1/4 - 1/2 inch of concrete about 4 or 5 inches deep in the dirt in the corner of their flowerbeds right? But no, even the concrete could not stop me today. That sucker's in there nice and tight.
Then there's this:
Now I probably should have taken some before photos for you to fully appreciate what you are looking at and the battle I waged with the help of my truly awesome parents (birthday present or no Mom and Dad, that was a ton of work today!). You see for the past 3 years I've lived here I've battled the weeds, but this year the roots on those ...(insert expletive of choice here...personally I'm going with fart lickers...just in case one day one of my daughters gets the urge to read this. I'd like them to know my creativity knows no bounds, and even under the most dire of circumstances I don't have to resort to cussing, at least not in print where there is evidence ;-) Anyway, back to the roots, they were so deep that a good majority of my weed jungle had to be dug out and not pulled. And while I was in the extract the splinter from my rear kind of mood, I went ahead and ripped out 5 gorgeous, yet fiercely annoying shrubs, prickly and prone to developing a ferocious carrot sort of weed that simply would embed itself so far into the middle of the shrubs' roots that really the poor bushes (as well as my hands, arms, and legs) didn't even have a fighting chance.
Then there was another half dead bush to remove, my annuals to finish planting, the landscaping paper, and mulch. All this in the hot hot sun, that was not supposed to be out today (I listen to the weather man, why doesn't the sun?) And really there's two other sections that had a little TLC today, but the pictures didn't turn out too good because of early evening shadows. And of course we can't forget Chloe's precious butterflies:
She is a big fan of butterflies. There ain't a one she won't try to catch and purple and green are her favorite colors. So when we stumbled across this lovely at the store it was a no brainer...the finishing touch for our renovated flowerbeds. They are now truly our own.
Yada yada yada, I know this is not the reason you're reading my blog so let's get onto the running. After finishing my nearly miraculous landscape transformation, and putting my girlie girlies to bed who for some odd reason were extra wound up tonight (they're like bloodhounds man...they sense a tired mamma and they attack.), I headed downstairs for a 3 mile tempo run on the treadmill.
Feeling extremely accomplished already with all that outdoorsy work in the bag, I decided to push it a bit. I remember reading somewhere in the wide running world that your tempo run ought to be about 2 minutes or so faster than your long run (actually, no...it was the other way around, long slow run 2 minutes slower than tempo, but same thing). And slowly, but surely, my long slow distance runs have been creeping a bit faster. I'm down to about 11 minute miles or so. Now I'm no math genius or anything, but even I know I can't in good conscience keep hanging onto these tempo runs at 10 minute miles if my lsd's are going to be faster. Time to pick it up a touch. They ought to be at about 9 minute miles or so (Yikes! for me anyway...all you fasties out there keep your snickers to yourself. Eight months ago when I got the A Ok to run again after the birth of my 2nd daughter, I remember 12 minute miles being way too fast).
So here's the pat myself on the back I get two peppermint patties tonight moment:
I RAN SUB 9 MINUTE MILES!!!
8:57 minute mile pace to be exact, but still...sub 9. Yessssssss!!! This is big potatoes for me. Huge. Maybe in fact some other kind of root vegetable that's larger or at least a potato that's been genetically altered to grow say the size of a small cow (oh yes, didn't you know? NASA works on all these kinds of things secretly, so as not to cause panic. In fact, I may have said too much....back to running, nothing more to see here). And while the first two miles, bit the big one, by three I was in the zone. I was finished, but I was in the zone and could have gone on, at least a little bit. So I know it's only 3 miles and all, but let me tell you that a 4:30 Chicago marathon goal is looking a little less hazy for me now.
Oh and the peppermint patties...I started that way back when, sometime before my daughters but after college. You see, I luv luv luv peppermint patties. I needed some incentive to get back to running(it's always the getting back into it that's the hardest part for me), so I decided to reward myself with a mini peppermint patty after each run. I was into eating healthy then (as I am attempting to do now) and so I was not eating sweets except for that teeny little minty chocolate piece of Heaven. No matter how tired I was, I couldn't resist the peppermint patty. I'd always get up and go run, often begrudgingly, but still, I'd go run. I've used them on and off as motivation and since you all heard of my lack thereof following the Bayshore 1/2, I had to call in the big guns (big candy guns that is). I've re-instituted the peppermint patties. And every once in awhile, when I am especially deserving, I'll break protocol and award myself two. Tonight, was a two peppermint patty night.
Tomorrow I'll post some pictures of my weekend 5 mile race. It was a charity race that I...cough cough...cheated on (under breath vaguely audible), but it was mighty fun all the same.
'Til next time...
May you each have your own two peppermint patty run!!!