Friday, October 30, 2009

Running, Turkey, Free Shirts &

I know! Can you believe I said that?! I can't. But you see, I desperately needed you to read this post and if there's anything I've learned since I've started blogging it's that without a clickable title nobody's reading your stuff. And come on, what's more clickable than boobs right. Women appalled at my audacity to blog about such a topic are certainly going to click to leave me a message of disgust. And men, well really do I even need to explain that?

Don't get me wrong. There will be talk of running, turkey, free shirts, and yes, even boobs. If there wasn't I'm sure you would all sully my good blogging name across the wide wide Internet world for falsely advertising the content of my posts with misleading titles and we wouldn't want that now would we? So without further ado, as promised, gobble gobble jiggle jiggle (Oh no! It's even worse than I thought it would be!)

All kidding aside, what I so desperately needed to tell you about is my sister-in-law, a young mother of three who stood up in my wedding and was one of the first to visit me in the hospital after having both my daughters. She was there to sit bedside when my oldest was sick just 10 days after she was born and I was terrified even bringing along cookies in an attempt to easy my worries with chocolate (which quite frankly, as a side note, you can never go wrong with). When my family was faced with a recent tragedy, she did not hesitate to drop everything she was doing to babysit a couple of unruly toddlers (mine AND my sister's) despite having her three kids in tow. You really can't be in the same room with her and not smile and there's a good chance if you spend any length of time with her she'll have you laughing. She's one of those rare people whom upon first meeting you feel as if you're already old friends.

But no I didn't suck you in with my goofy title to brag about what a wonderful sister-in-law I have. I sucked you in because she needs your help. You see, Cathy has been diagnosed with breast cancer. It came as a shocker being that there is no family history on my husband's side, but it also came on top of an already difficult situation. Earlier in the year, her husband became one of many victims in this tough Michigan economy when he was laid off his automotive job. He has since been able to find another job, but the health insurance hasn't kicked in just yet and even when it does my sister-in-law, Cathy, will be considered a pre-existing condition and not covered. Cathy has already exhausted government grants and Medicaid will cover some but not all of her costs.

Now the good news is localized breast cancer with early diagnosis and early treatment is 98% curable, so I suppose if you must be faced with some form of this nasty disease, this is the one to have. The bad news is with Cathy having to temporarily leave her job for treatment coupled with the high cost of medical expenses, her family is faced with a tremendous financial burden.

But a friend of mine (who also happens to be a running mom) asked if she could do any running for the cause. Which got me to thinking...why couldn't all my running pals run for Cathy? Runners are good souls. Just look at all the races run across the country for various causes. It's what we do.

So here's what I propose: a Thanksgiving run for Cathy since probably a good 80% of us will all be running Turkey Trots somewhere to justify eating enough to feed a small army on Thanksgiving anyway. Now my husband really wants me to call this Save a Breast on Turkey Day but that just does NOT seem right to me. So we'll go with Run 4 Cathy (unless you all come up with a better suggestion. Here's the details:


1. Pick a race. Preferrably a Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving because what a cool thought for Cathy to have that people across the country will be running for her that morning (and also because there's usually lots of places having races that day.) But it doesn't have to be Thanksgiving. Any distance on any day works, 1mile, 5K, 10K, 13.1, 26.2. Whatever. If there's not a race in your area, how about you just lace up the shoes and go for a run in her honor then?

2. Let me know. Leave a comment on this post or email me at if you prefer to be anonymous to the world (or you can't figure out how to make the comments work which seems to be a common problem these days). Just tell me what you're doing. For example: I am running for Cathy at the Turkey Trot in Detroit on Nov 26th. It's a 10K. I'll create a sidebar gadget with a list of all the people that are running, where and how many miles. It'll be kind of cool to see. And don't worry I can just put your Google username or anonymous if you want to remain mysterious.

3. Raise money. Every little bit helps! Even $5 or $10 adds up. If you are able to raise $50, I will send you a cotton t-shirt free specially designed by yours truly (which instantly raises the value to priceless right? ;-) or if you raise $100 or more I will send you a long sleeved performance wicking shirt. (let's be clear here, T-shirt OR long sleeved not both. Remember the goal is to raise money not necessarily increase the size of our running wardrobes) If you raise the most money, I will dedicate an entire post to you. I can even do this if you wish to remain anonymous and refuse to talk to me. Yes, I am that good. Test me.

4. Make your secure donation via paypal. Or send your friends here to make theirs. See the little donation button on my blog over there on the right underneath the picture of Cathy's family. That's where you do it at. Now here's the tricky part, since I am not as high tech as I really can't track who's donations go with who. So what I will need you to do to properly get credit for your shirt is one of two things, either make just one donation under your name OR let me know who made a donation that you referred. So yes, your friends will actually have to tell this time if they've done it. **DONATIONS MUST BE RECEIVED BY FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 13th in order to get your shirt to you before Thanksgiving. OR BY FRIDAY NOVEMBER 20th if I express ship it to you. If you choose to have your shirt express shipped, please add an additional $10 to your donation to cover the additional shipping expenses. If you don't care when you get your shirt, then don't worry about the deadlines :-)

5. Send me an email. At to let me know it's done and I need to get you a shirt. Something to the effect of: hey Kelly this is ... I just donated $100 or hey Kelly this is ... and the donations from Kara Goucher, Ryan Hall, and Brian Sell all go with me and add up to over $100 so I'll be needing that shirt now. And I will answer back something to the effect of: I just checked and found all those donations. You rule. Where would you like your shirt shipped to? Once you tell me, I'll get it ordered and shipped right away. It takes about 7-10days.

6.Wear your shirt at the race. Because we all know it's not cool to wear the shirt of the race that you're racing in so you might as well wear something else that's fashionable, free and for a good cause. And hey who knows, maybe somebody will see the website on the shirt and make another donation. Just like that you've increased your fundraising efforts without ever saying a word.

7. Send me a picture of you in your shirt. I'll put together a little slideshow we can post on the website and it can be our little gift to Cathy. She's got a long road ahead and maybe that slideshow can be my version of chocolate chip cookies for her since if I actually baked them they would turn out just this side of rock hard.

So that's the deal. If you've got any questions or suggestions, please feel free to let me know. And if you want to learn more about Cathy and the fundraising efforts her family and friends are working on to try to make this difficult time for her a little less so, please visit And no running back here to tell me I plagiarized the stuff at the beginning about Cathy from that website. It's quite possible that I had a little something to do with the writing on that site as well and as far as I know you can not actually plagiarize from yourself unless of course you do not give yourself permission to use your own stuff. And in that case my friend you have far worse problems than plagiarism.

Thanks in advance for your support!

'Til next time....

P.S. You can also come join our facebook group for Cathy by clicking here. It's a great place to leave words of encouragement or prayers for her. And if you happen to live in the Southeastern MI area, your definitely going to want to join because we are planning some pretty sweet fundraising events that you are not gonna want to miss!

P.P.S. One last thing you should know about Cathy. The week she found out she was diagnosed with breast cancer also happened to be the week of the Detroit Free Press Marathon which her husband was training for, his first. He offered not to run it, if she didn't want him to. She not only encouraged him to run the race he'd train so hard for, but came up to cheer him on in various spots on the course with her two oldest children and ran the last little bit with him near the finish. Honestly guys, Cathy is a very special lady.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Be gentle ice bath..this is my first time.

I have avoided ice baths much the way I avoid taking both of my girls to the grocery store for fear of complete mental breakdown.

I like baths. I even like ice. But together, not so much my idea of a good time. I do believe I'd rather pluck each and every hair off my body while watching Yo Gabba Gabba with a cranky baby who refuses to take a nap if you get my drift. (Or type a blog post with a 3 year old practically sitting on top of me trying to feed goldfish crackers to my computer while watching her (or my)"quiet time" movie, playing footsies with me, randomly reaching up to stick her fingers in my nose from time to time and passing gas mercilessly. Wait...that actually is happening right this minute. MY GOODNESS CHILD! What did you eat?!)

That is until I read this blog post over on Runner's World by Librarian Runs called I don't want to take an ice bath My sentinments exactly I thought when I saw the title. But after reading her post, well acutually the comments that went with the post, I had to try it. I mean go read it. With all the glowing praises of the effects of an ice bath post run how can you not?

So following my long run yesterday, I filled the bath tub with the coldest water I could and dumped in all the ice from my freezer. I left on all my running clothes like one of the commenters on that post suggested (because somehow leaving all my clothes on just made me feel better about the whole insane thing I was about to do, like somehow it was less crazy) added a sweatshirt and one of those warm head bands for your ears and got in sounding like a woman about to give birth. "Hee Hee who. Hee Hee who." All while my husband watched laughing. It nearly took my breath away, but after the initial shock, honestly it wasn't too bad. I sat in it for about 10-12 minutes munching on pretzels and sipping gatorade (only the finest cuisine for runners). Then got out because the ice had melted and the water did not seem very cold anymore, then stripped out of my wet clothes and took a hot shower which almost felt to good to blog about. Really, after an ice bath a hot shower is just that good.

And today, I gotta say...I feel pretty good. Pretty much the only thing slightly annoying me is my hips and I don't think I got them completely covered. Next time, I'll get an extra bag of ice from the store and fill it up a little higher. I'm sold.

'Til next time...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Well hello there ice bag. So we meet again...

I have been lucky. No two ways about it. Pure and simple. Luck. For the last I don't know how long now, I have not had to ice pretty much anything. Which for me is kind of unheard of, usually a knee or two will give me a bit of trouble (nothing a little freeze time can't cure). But pretty much for the last couple of months, nada. Perhaps my body has adjusted to the rigors of marathon training?

That is until Sunday. The date of my last long wasn't long. I mean unless you consider oh about two miles long. Then, whew, so glad I made it!

But technically it was supposed to be 20 miles. So yeah, I guess you could say I was a little off. And though it pains me to admit this and thus give him the victory he so desires, it was Mr. Virus. He called my bluff knowing I was in all actuality powerless to stop him. At about mile two, hacking up a lung and feeling a tad dizzy. I turned right around and walked back to my car (so actually there were 4 miles total then huh?). Besides I was absent the Kenyan because he was having some ankle trouble and wanted to give it a little R & R. So I just figured hey, I'll do a couple short runs and get that last pre-marathon long run in by Wednesday so the Kenyan doesn't have to go it alone and I can kick this cold.

Only one problem. I seem to have somehow, in two miles (or four, whatever) have aggravated something (anklish, back of, slightly to the left). Now tell me, how does this happen? I can run 15, 17, 18, 20, 24 and I'm good to go, but two (or 4) and I'm reaching for the ice bag. I tried to go for one of those little short runs earlier today and literally made it less than a 1/4 of a mile. What the crack is that?

This makes no sense. If you need me, I'll be laying in bed with ice strapped to my ankle adoring my fuel belt that just arrived in time today for me around in bed? Maybe I'll fill it with some Pinot Grigio or something and read a running book. That's kind of what it's meant for right?

'Til next time...

Friday, October 23, 2009

Alright Virus...I have an opening for you inbetween long runs

Since you are so persistent. I will fit you in if I must.

I have no time for a cold. I mean where exactly on my marathon training schedule is there a giant gap where in place of running it says lie in bed and sleep? Veg on the couch and watch Office reruns? Eat only popsicles and chicken soup?

And even if it did, for the love of Pete (WHO IS PETE ANYWAY? AND WHY DO WE SO WANT HIM TO LOVE US?) who would watch my kids? Where are the mommy sick days? Because my 1 year old is not suddenly going to stop climbing on her Whinney the Pooh activity table and quit eating her sister's snotty kleenexes (yep, she really did that). Nor is my 3 year old, just going to magically begin preparing her own meals (monster cheese, spaghetti noodles, and fruit cups but only the cherries that's all she'd ever eat, well ok that or Dora gummies)and putting herself to bed ("Mamma, I'm not tired. I want to stay up forever until tommorrow"). Nope. Nada. Not going to happen.

My husband always teases me that it takes forever to get over a cold. But the truth of the matter is, it takes me forever because I DON'T GET THE LUXURY OF A REST.

But I believe I may have outfoxed this cold this time. Inspite of snotty, hacking, fevering all around me in the form of my two little peanuts, I'm hanging on with little more than a sore throat. The peak of which seems to have passed.

So here's how, because I know you all are desperate to know:
1. Vitamin C - yep I know everybody knows this already
2. Double my dosage of Vital Fruits, which is a super loaded anti-oxidant drink and yeah before I get fined by the FCC and their new internet blogging laws, I do have a vested interest in that product. But look I'm not even going to link it for you so I can get credit.
3. DanActive - read somewhere that the cultures in yogurt were good for your immune system, but I'm not a huge fan of yogurt, at least not enough to eat it on a daily basis. These are like little yogurt shots you drink. They're tasty too. (And no, I don't get paid by the Dannon people. Although, if they want to start sending me money, I'm not sending it back)
4. Go to bed semi-early. This was the hardest for me because I can NOT sleep under pressure to go to sleep.
5. Cut my runs back slightly. I've read before about how runs can affect your immune system both in good ways and bad ways. (There's a pretty good article you can read here on Runner's World about this and more tips on staying healthy during cold season). So I cut my runs back to about an hour each this week and am pushing my long run off til Sunday to give myself one extra day to kick this bug (we'll and ok...Saturday it's supposed to that played a part in my decision too)

So Mr. Virus, I believe I have been a more than gracious host for the past...oh...five or so days. But you may consider this your one and only official notice. You have (checking my watch)28 hours until my long run. Then your time is up and I can no longer be responsible for the unfriendly environment with which you will find yourself in. Heed my warning. Otherwise...Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die...wait...what?

Sorry. I was lacking for a ending and got carried away. But while we're on the subject, anybody know what that's from? Wait...don't tell us...just give us another line...I love that movie.

'Til next time...

P.S. And if you really want to get a good laugh, you all must go over to Runner's World and read The Evolution of Crazy by Mr. Bacon (see, even that's funny).

P.P.S. Big hello to the people over at Wellsphere! I somehow managed to weasle my way into becoming one of their health bloggers. I thought they were hooking my posts up automatically but looks like I have to do it on my own. Tonight's my first attempt. So if you stumbled your way over by way of Wellsphere be sure to say hello!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

In Light of the Detroit Marathon Deaths...

I bought a fuel belt. Now in all honesty, I never had any attention of blogging about the fuel belt or the Detroit Marathon for that matter. I mean 3 people died there and I in no way shape or form want to make light of that. My heart goes out to the families who lost a father, brother, or a son at the race this past weekend. To have such a wonderful day end that way is tragic. My thoughts and prayers are with the families.

But here's the thing. There's rumors floating around metro D and I can't seem to shake them. Now, I'm not too sure I buy into all this, and quite frankly I generally tend to be a skeptic until proven otherwise or I've had the chance to dig into the details myself (perhaps I learned something in those journalism classes after all eh?) but regardless of the truth of these rumors I think there's some valid points that we as runners need to consider. Hence, the reason for this post. So excuse me as I put aside my lame attempts at humor for a moment to look at the facts of what happened this past weekend (side note: this theory is actually not my own, but was first brought to my attention by a fellow MI running friend over on facebook, who shall remain nameless because the discussion has since been deleted and I'm not entirely sure why.)

I've repeatedly seen it discussed by various doctors on news broadcasts covering the marathon deaths that it is most likely these men were suffering from some unknown underlying medical condition (a few I've heard mentioned: an enlarged heart, heart deformity or narrowing and/or blockage of the arteries) and that this underlying condition coupled with the stress on the body from an extreme sport like marathoning would have caused these men to go into cardiac arrest. So too on Runner's World is the same thing suggested (you can read about it here). And the advice that these doctors give to avoid such a fate is advice we'd all do well to follow, "See your doctor for checkups. Get a physical before taking on ANY sort of new exercise program. "

But here's the problem I'm having with all this underlying condition talk (and thus the reason for the fuel belt):

Chances of dying in a marathon are .8 per 100,000 participants. This was 3 in a field of about 9,000. But you see these men were not even running the marathon. They were running the half. So you've got to think the chances of that are even smaller right? None of them were new runners. Rick Brown, who was 65, had run 2 full marathons in the past and travelled the country with a group running various races. Daniel Langdon, 36, had run halfs before. And Jonathan Fenlon, 26, had been training since June for the Detroit Half Marathon. He had competed in various shorter races before including a leg of the Detroit Marathon Relay the year before.

Each of these men died within 16 minutes of eachother and within a mile and a half. Brown died just past 12 miles, Langdon, just before 12 miles and Fenlon at the finish (13.1). So let that sit for a minute...3 apparently healthy males and at least somewhat experienced runners die in a HALF marathon within 16 minutes of eachother and fairly close together. Really? What are the chances of that?

But it gets weirder. Remember the "underlying condition" that all the doctors on tv seem to think is a suitable explanation. Well, the autopsy results came back on Monday and they are being withheld as "inconclusive." More tests have been ordered including a toxicology report. Now, I know nothing about autopsies and so maybe somebody can correct me here, but wouldn't an enlarged heart (or one of the other above mentioned conditions) show up pretty easily on an autopsy?

So perhaps now you can guess the reason for the fuel belt? And no, I don't totally buy into the sinister rumors floating around that somebody spiked the aid cups, but it definitely got me thinking. I mean I appreciate the hundreds of thousands of volunteers that come out to races to hand out water and gatorade. They are AWESOME to do that and I can think of plenty of times in the scorching heat where I might have stopped and kiss one full on the mouth just for handing me that little paper cup of water if I wasn't trying to hit some goal. They are an integral part of racing. So I in no way want to seem ungrateful, but at the same time, I have witnessed fingers in cups more than a time or two and on one occassion even saw a volunteer pick something out of a cup then hand it to a runner. Come on now, how sanitary is that? If I think of all the races I've run, I can only name you one where the volunteers wore gloves (Bayshore Half Marathon if you're interested).

So all I'm saying here is maybe we ought to think about this a little bit before we grab a cup from some random stranger on the course, as thirsty as we might be, especially now as we are rapidly approaching flu season and with H1N1 already floating around. Maybe runners don't only have a better chance of getting sick following a marathon because of a lowered immune system but also because they've been drinking who knows what in those cups?

Am I way off base here guys? Or is this something we'd do well to think about?

'Til next time...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Polish or Kenyan?? Think I'm Going to Need to See Some Verification to Continue...

I think my new running partner might be...(just a minute...checking over my shoulder)...Kenyan...(sshh...don't say it too loud he might hear you.)

I have no problem with Kenyans. In fact, I am envious of their harldy believable running talents (in an I'm not willing to work nearly that hard sort of way). Just not sure, I am exactly qualified to have one as my running partner.

You see so far, I've lost 3 partners in the last 5 months or so (maybe he's the one that should be afraid then eh?). First my husband went down to injury, then my mom. Following which my brother-in-law had to cut out to go do something crazy like taper for his marathon (which he ran yesterday in Detroit, 1st one, feel free to leave him comment on what a running rock star he is now!) so our running schedules weren't exactly matching up and we had to go our separate ways.

But somewhere in the middle of all this another someone else, who shall remain nameless because I do believe he has not exactly chosen to out his running to the rest of the world just yet, decided to throw themself into the crazy running mix. Now he's in pretty good shape because of his line of work and he's been working out in various ways since the beginning of the year (I think so anyway or at least I like to tell myself that) but really he's only picked up running steadily the last couple of months.
Well after the whole Chicago fiasco (you can read about that here so I don't have to relive the agony AGAIN), this mysterious masked man (ok ok he doesn't actually wear a mask, but if it gets any colder here he might be willing to consider it which would thus make me running not only with a Kenyan, but also a superhero...a Kenyan Superhero...I could be in trouble here folks.) decided that he'd go along for the do over in Indianapolis with me. What?! Seriously?! I thought he had pretty much lost his mind because Indianapolis is just a short 3 weeks (well 3 1/2 weeks at the time) away and his longest run had been 10 miles. Typically, when one decides to run a marathon they take more than a month to train.

But no, he was seriously wanting to give it a go. You see, apparently, new as though he may be to running, he's posting some 6 minute miles on shorter runs (**sigh**...give me a moment to bury my lack of speed frustration here....errrrrrr.....ok that's better). Not too bad for a guy that just started right? His 10 mile run was 1:30 putting him at an average 9 minute mile pace. He knows my long run pace is a little more 10-10 1/2 ish, so he figured if he just slowed down a bit, he could run with me. I wasn't too sure what the results of a sudden 5 mile increase would be, but was directed to make him a schedule. So I did. And guess what? So far he's right on. I swear. And not in an I will finish by sheer determination despite the fact that I will not be able to walk afterwards sort of way either.

Our first long run was Friday, 15 miles, 5 more than he had ever gone. I did NOT take it easy on him. I mean what's the sense in that? Marathons don't baby people. You've got to respect the distace right? How many times have we heard that? If you don't, it's gonna chew you up and spit you out in a way that will leave you questioning your own sanity for even setting your foot on the starting line. So I just did my thing and watched to see if he would keep up. Our pace was 10:18 and the last three miles were all sub 10 with a last mile (on a sucky stupid hill I might add) that was 9:00 minutes (oh wait!! Let me also not fail to mention that it was wicked windy from about 8 miles on).

Now here's the kicker...he hardly takes anything on a run. I think I saw him drink a few sips of gatorade twice. That's it. Whereas I, on the other hand, am trying out yet another way to keep my electrolytes in line (we always seem to be at war, the electrolytes and I) by "doing the salt." Sounds weird I know. Here's the Runners World article link so you don't think I'm making it up. And you might want to also check out this followup article too. (FYI: it actually worked out alright during the run, but then I made the fatal mistake of not eating anything for a looooooong time after b/c of a fussy baby who needed a nap and a diaper, and a three year old who needed her fair share of attention and lunch and then of course there was me, who desperately needed a shower...and I uh...forgot to eat. Stupid huh? It was sometime while I was drying my hair and the spots began to appear that I remembered I hadn't eaten since 5AM and it was well past 1PM at that point...and you know the whole 15 mile run thing. Spots were followed by a massive was not good. Not a mistake to make again.)

So in light of the apparent God given super speediness with nada speed workouts to date coupled with his body's seemingly natural ability to tolerate the long run without much by way of outside supplementation/hydration, I'm thinking before I continue to run with this fella I might want to get a look at his birth certificate and just maybe take a little peek into his ancestry. He claims to be Polish, but I don't want to be at mile 23 of my marathon to find suddenly that the inner Kenyan has surfaced and we have crept up on a pace that rivals the elites for a brief and shining moment which would most certainly be followed quickly by my drastic and probably very dramatic demise due to my inability to maintain such a mind altering pace. And though he has repeatedly assured me he would stick with me rather than vice versa, I'm not so sure that's possible. I mean can a Kenyan not be a Kenyan when once he's slipped on the running shoes and the feet are hitting the pavement? And once that finish line gets within site can the inner Pole suppress the running heritage that has made Kenyan running so great? I guess we shall see now shan't we...(HA! I just used shan't in a many points is that worth?)

Maybe I should've gotten the hint when his wife bought me a headband at the Detroit Marathon Expo this weekend that said "In my dreams, I'm a Kenyan." (and also a t-shirt btw with my all time favorite running shirt slogan..."Does this shirt make my butt look fast?" Hee hee. I smile just thinking about it. Check out One More Mile for more really cool running clothes with funny slogans) Maybe it wasn't so much a gift as it was a warning...hmm...

So we've got 20 miles next weekend, I'll let you know if he starts suggesting we run barefoot or something...

'Til next time...
P.S. HOW COULD I FORGET THE RELAY!!! We ran the Detroit Marathon Relay this past weekend for Make-A-Wish. Our team raised over $5000 dollars and ran GREAT race despite two runners with a cold (one of whom also had a minor case of hypothermia. Why is it that the race organizers think that the 3rd leg of the relays can self heat themselves for 2 hours waiting for their turn to run in 35 degree temps but yet all the other legs should have heated buses to protect them from the elements?) and a couple of our teammates were still on the mend from injury. Way to go Ollie, Mom, Karen and Tom! (Tom's first race btw all...4.4 miles bringing it home for us on the glory leg. You'll be hearing more about him in the near future. I'm sure of it :-) Thank so much to all of you who generously opened your hearts and your pocketbooks to make a wish come true for a little lady or gent!

P.P.S. Thanks also for all the marathon suggestions and words of encouragement (and sympathy) with respect to Chicago. My head IS back in the game now and I AM officially now registered for Indianapolis on Nov 7 for the 2nd running of the Monumental Marathon. But wouldn't you know the very day I do, I'm face with two snotty (as in sick) kiddos and my own sore throat. Oy! Send me all your healthy vibes, so I can kick it quickly and get back to it in time for my long run Saturday please. Don't want to miss the 20 miler with my favorite Kenyan now do I? ;-)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Um...Do Over Please?

They do have those in marathoning right? I mean I give them to my 3 year old all the time so I figured maybe I should at least ask (I’ll even add a pretty please with sugar on top and cross my fingers while I’ll say it if that will help.)

Ladies and gents, Chicago did not go well. While I would like to say that you won’t be finding my official time because there was some serious chip malfunction or that with my nerves running rampant this morning I failed to properly affix said chip to my shoe, thus losing it forever somewhere between miles 16 & 17. None of this would be true.

No, that big fat disappointing DNF you see when you searched for me at the Chicago Marathon (come on now, I know you all did it, so might as while fess up) belongs sadly to me. All the training, all the cash to get down there (did you know in Chicago it is freaking $48 a night to park your car at your OWN hotel. I kid not) and I have no medal to show for it (nor did I get my free beer at the after party).

I had issues. Now in all honesty, I wrote this post yesterday, chronicling every tragic step which was my marathon. But upon re-reading I have decided that I pretty much sound like a whiny baby all throughout making excuses for myself and that many of these issues are probably not suitable for family audiences anyway (if you must know all the gory details find me on facebook and send me a message and I’ll spill it). So instead let me just put it this way, there were unexpected female problems (at least unexpected in so far as the ferocity with which they would arrive), digestive trouble (um…from both ends…yep, disgusting I know), and the disheartening lines at the bathroom in which I stood (multiple times) for 4-5 minutes each time watching my goal time slip away completely sucking the life out of me. (Speaking of which I would like to officially take a moment here on behalf of women everywhere to state my case for making it ILLEGAL, that’s right ILLEGAL, I’m talking steep fines and jail time, for men to use port-a-potties only to pee during a marathon. I mean come on. You all are peeing on every bush, building and tree in sight pretty much without showing even a touch of skin all throughout the race. What’s with those of you buttercups who INSIST on getting in the port-a-potty lines to pee? You’re just taking up precious room in line and slowing up everyone’s times. I mean women have no choice, it’s either bare all or get in line. You guys could probably even do it on the fly if necessary. So unless you fellas have to use the johns for another reason, like one requiring the use of toilet paper, do us all a favor please, skip the pots.)

And that was my marathon. The big DNF came just steps before mile 17. And yeah, I struggled with that decision for a good 3 miles before I made the SOS call to my husband. What finally made me whip out the cell phone was when the 4:45 pace team passed me by. I had started walking (in the kind of funny looking fashion that is your only option when you are also trying to maintain control of your bowels) and had just found out I wouldn’t be seeing him (and thus a restocking of feminine products) until mile 20 (I had last seen him at mile 2). So as the pace team BEHIND my pace team passed me and thus all hope of coming anywhere near my goal (since running was not going to be an option at least not in the very near future) I sent the “I’m done. Come find me.” Text message to my husband. Now had I never finished a marathon before, I would have sucked it up and kept on going dragging my sorry behind across the finish no matter how long it took. But since I have already accomplished that amazing feat, and was actually running for a time rather than just a finish, I just didn’t see much point in prolonging the misery at least not then (now of course I’m kicking myself and the head is beginning to set in). And besides walking 10 miles was gonna take FOREVER.

And although the disappointment weighs heavily upon me, I will celebrate in this fact. I look pretty dang good in my Chicago Marathon shirt. I actually look like…dare I say it?...a marathoner. Seriously, no leftover baby fat in that shirt (those last couple of pounds must be pure muscle baby). So although I was feeling kind of guilty about wearing that shirt, I think I will for a moment (a non-running moment, LOL) embrace my inner Kenyan and take a line from world record holder Haile Gebrselassie (wait..I don't think he is Kenyan, Ethiopian rather, I'm embracing my inner Ethiopian) who says,“I don’t train for the finish. I train for the start.” And train I did…and hard, even when I was tired, even when the babies wouldn’t go to bed the day before, even when the weather sucked, even when I just didn’t want to. So I’m gonna go right ahead and wear that shirt and call yesterday, a bad running day. It happens. Besides, it’s only quitting if I never run another marathon right?

Late last night after we got home at around 1AM I did a little google search on do overs. Hamilton ON marathon sounds good, but it’s Halloween weekend and I’ve got a hungry lion and a scarecrow, who’s “stuck on a pole with nothing to do” that need to get all loaded up with candy. So that’s out. But Indianapolis, Nov 7th…that just might work…maybe they are do overs after all?

‘Til next time…

May your good running days fall on race day and when they don’t, run another day!

Don’t forget next weekend is the Detroit Marathon and I’m running the first leg of the relay for Make-A-Wish and in lieu of the whole Chicago Marathon bomb, I’m now taking your sympathy donations. Even just $5, $10 would really help alleviate some of the crushing disappointment I’m feeling. Do I need to say pretty please again? ;-) Come on help make a wish come true for a sick child! Click here to go to my Active Giving page.

P.P.S. I have some questions and need some help from all you more experienced marathoners out there. But this post is far too long already and I need to put a little more thought power into what all went down yesterday and why. So make sure you all come back and read my next post and share your mighty running wisdom. Oh and this may actually come in the form of a guest post, by none other than runfastdaddy himself who was witness to at least some of the happenings yesterday. Stay tuned...this oughta be good.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

No sadly my chip did not fall off. There were issues. Details to come. For now crushed :-( & recovering
Headin to start. Dang cold. Look like that kid from a Christmas story. Think it'll affect my time? Need prayers @11 please. Bib 15231

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Headed to the expo with friends. Kind of windy & cold today. Hope it warms up a touch for tomorrow and my long run w/ oh i dont know a few thousand other people

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I Run Therefore I Eat...ALOT! (Recipe ALERT)

And I probably would even if I didn't, so it's a good thing I run. I love food. Glass of wine and a good meal...ahh...does it get any better? (maybe should add kids in bed early..yeah, that's the ticket). In fact, I don't pretend that I know what exactly Heaven is like, but I'm betting food is involved. I mean how could a just and loving God leave that out? (and I bet it's not just any food either. It's like gourmet feasts, with the finest chocolate desserts...and oh yeah, let's not forget most importantly that the food is the actual temperature at which you are supposed to eat it at, as opposed to mommystyle eating, you know, frozen food melted, cold food warm, and hot food cold. Pretty much the way most of my meals go down and I'm thinking the same for many moms out there, who spend most of their dinners going "Yes, you can have more milk. No, you may not put your feet on the table. Go get another fork then. Don't play with your food. If you don't eat that, you're getting nothing else. No, you will stay here until we are all finished eating. You ARE going to clean up this mess. No, you may not have dessert unless you eat your chicken. Don't hide your food," and of course we shan't forget about the starving children in China, although personally since my daughter is still just three I haven't pulled that one out yet. But give her time, I have faith ;-)

Now, I'm no gourmet chef or anything. No, not much sense in honing those skills at this point considering most of my 1 year old's food has to be pureed still (I'm a freak about choking hazards), and the loving meals I prepare for my 3 year old are most often "too spicy" or "slobbilly"(which is defined by Little Miss as "you know," that's right she says "you know" just as often as I do..."slobbilly means foods that don't taste too good mamma,") and my husband, well, he can pretty much stomach anything (seriously, "what's the expiration date on that? It expired a few days ago? Oh well, close enough. Probably won't hurt me.") besides he's usually going to drown whatever I make with salt and pepper and be done with plate number one before I even sit down. So see what I mean, not much point in spending hours and hours in the kitchen.

But somehow I still hold onto the hope that I will only be preparing one meal each night rather than three (plus baby food, but that doesn't really count...milk & open a jar, wish I could feed everyone so easily!) So I try to make the meals family friendly and I thought I'd share a couple of quick easy recipes I make (plus I told you all about the chicken tortilla soup the other night but failed to come back and share the recipe, so here's me trying to make ammends with instead three...that's right...THREE recipes. See what good fortune you have to have stumbled onto this blog.) They're all good (as opposed to the people who share recipes they don't like?) and even toddler friendly (is that even possible? toddler friendly food?) and two of the three involve a crockpot (I'm a big fan of the crockpot...seriously, I think I could kiss the guy that invented that on the mouth upon first meeting...ok maybe not, but I'd at least shower him with praises.)

So without further ado here's Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup, Easy Cheatin' Jambalaya (I made that up. Pretty good name eh?) and the infamous Pesto Pasta (ok that one needs a better name, suggestions?), just be forewarned not to eat that one within an hour of your run or you could wind up like me a few days ago which, in case you missed it and care to know, can be found here.


(Saw this first in the book Fix-It and Forget It, but have altered it slightly. Those books are awesome by the way)

2-can black beans
2-cans of Rotel tomatoes (or just get diced tomatoes w/green chiles)
1-2 cups of your favorite salsa (I use Jack's in the deli area)
1-can of green chiles (small)
1-(14 1/2 ounce)can of tomato sauce
1-can of corn (optional)
3-4 chicken breasts
tortilla chips (optional)
avocado (optional)
sour cream (optional)
shredded mexican cheese (optional)

Put the black beans, salsa, chiles, tomato sauce, corn (I say optional cause my husband doesn't like it) and chicken in the crock pot. Rinse out the cans with some water too and add that. Cook on low for 8 hours or until the chicken is done. You can even just put frozen chicken in there if you like (or forgot because you were too busy getting ready for your morning run and 4:30AM wakeup call to remember to take the chicken out of the freezer.) When the chicken is done, take it out and shred it with a couple of forks. Then stick it back in and mix it up with the rest of the soup. Top it with any (or all) of the following: crunched up tortilla chips (I like the lime ones, but no one else does, which on the one hand might be a good thing ;-), avocado, sour cream and mexican cheese.

Now for the three year old in your life who probably won't eat the soup because it's too spicy, here's what you do. When you take the chicken out to shred, cut a little bit up in bite size pieces (sometimes I have to rinse it off a bit to get all the tomatoey beany goodness that causes said spiciness off) and also give her a handful of tortilla chips (because chips for dinner is awesome to a kid!), also a handful of shredded cheese and whatever fruit you have around the house and you've pretty much got every food group involved except cookie (oh wait no vegetables either now that I think about it. See she just so rarely eats vegetables that I don't even think about them anymore. Shame on me!! Although she did eat a pumpkin muffin today, so that counts right?)


2-boxes of Zatarrin's Jambalya
1- Green pepper
1-Red pepper
1-Medium Onion
1-Can of diced tomatoes
2-packages of sauage or polska kielbasa (or one of each)
3-chicken breasts
1-pkg of cooked frozen shrimp (thaw it by running under cold water, it doesn't have to be completely thawed. I run it under cold water and remove the tails at the same time. When I finish, I put it in.)

Word on the meat: any one choice of meat makes a great meal, but the best is when you use them all!

Cut up the peppers and onion however you like (I like mine pretty chunky). Put the the Zatarin's, peppers, onions, diced tomatoes, sausage (cut up into abou1 inch chunks) into the crock pot. If your using chicken you might want to brown it first before you cut it up and put it in. Add water as per box (I think it's like 4 cups but I don't happen to have the box in front of me at the moment). Let it cook on low for 8 hours. Then, about 10 minutes before your ready to eat it, put in with the rest of the Jambalya and mix it up. Really you're just trying to warm up the shrimp since it's already cooked which doesn't take long. But once it does, dish it up. Your ready to eat! Add some kind of pillsbury roll to this as an extra plus.

For the kiddos, you'll need to pluck out the sausage or chicken (possibly rinse off) and cut it up. Usually mine will go for a roll too, but then I've got to add to dinner a piece of cheese (yeah my daughter is big on cheese, especially Monster Cheese which started out to be Meunster Cheese but now is what she refers to all white sliced cheese as, unless you try to slip in Swiss. Then you are in trouble)


1-rotissere chicken (just buy it at the grocery store already done)
1- can of artichokes quartered
1-jar of sundried tomatoes in olive oil (thanks to John over on Tribal Running for this suggestion...such a yummy addition)
1-package of mushrooms (I get baby bellas pre-sliced and pre-washed)
1-package of whole wheat thin sphagetti (or whatever you prefer)
Basil pesto (comes in a jar in the Italian food section of the grocery store)

Warm up a little bit of the olive oil (about a tbsp depending on how many mushrooms you're adding, I use a whole package of fresh) from the sundried tomatoes in a sautee pan and sautee the mushrooms until done. And start making the pasta as per box. Cut up the sun dried tomatoes and the chicken into bite size pieces. Once the mushrooms are finished (however you like them, I pretty much sautee the snot out of them), add the chicken, sun dried tomatoes, artichokes to the pan and mix it all up. Next add the pesto as per taste (I usually add about 2-3 tablespoons). Make sure you mix it up in the jar before you add it to the pan otherwise your probably just adding more olive oil. Stir it up really well and let it all blend together and get nice and warm for a few minutes. Plate yourself some pasta and pour some of the chicken, pesto, artichoke, tomato, mushroom mixture on top. Sprinkle on some parmesean if you like and voila! You have my favorite, quick easy pasta dish.

And for the little darlings: Cut up some of the plain noodles before you add anything to it on top, and sprinkle on some parm. My daughter eats this like she hasn't been fed for a week and I'll take it away at any second (then again if she only eats half the meals I make, she probably IS starving.) It's not uncommon for her to ask for 2nds and 3rds. I usually also make broccoli with this dish which is like the only vegetable Chloe will eat (that and weird?) Again add an apple or a pear, maybe a scoop of cottage cheese and my daughter is thrilled with this dinner. Although my floor probably has about an equal amount of pasta on it as Chloe does in her tummy. But she is getting better and is now responsible for her own giant mess! YAY!

So there you go.

'Til next time...

Happy eating!

P.S. Maybe next time, we'll talk ice cream cake :-) I'll check and see if I can find that one.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Delayed Onset Chafing

So is this gross? I've got to know right from the get go. Maybe I've been running long enough now that things like snot rockets, chafing and losing toe nails no longer disgust me (not that I've lost a toe nail, it just seems like I'm always running into people who do. Wonder if they just need a different pair of shoes? Or perhaps just hanging around me causes people's toe nails to fall off?) But my husband tells me to follow the snot rocket post with chafing is probably just too much for my audience and I'm sure to lose followers.

But these are serious issues for runners, issues that beg discussion. So post away I will and if I by chance offend one of my devoted followers who in turn decide to unfollow me, then so be it. I can not hide the truth in fear of losing a fair weather follower.

You see, my Body Glide (anti-chafing stick) is missing. Well, at least it was on Sunday, when I headed out the door for my 10 mile run. For those of you who are non-runners or haven't perhaps headed out the door for the long haul yet, you might not be aware of what a dire necessity this is. Shorter distances, go out for your run and it's no big deal. But once you start getting up there in miles you learn that what may have been a minor annoyance on a shorter run, is now borderline major injury. For me, it's inner thigh rub but this is by no means the limit of Body Glide's usage. I have serious doubt there's a body part it has not been used on (ok so maybe my husband's right this is gross...better move on).

But the 10 miles needed to get done so the run had to go on, despite the lack of inner thigh protection. The good news was cold (not on the level of freaking cold, I mean I eventually took off my sweatshirt and was running in a tank top. But I will go with pretty darn cold). Cold enough that my legs were semi frozen, so I had the good fortune not to feel the chafing as it happened.

The bad news...when I finished the run and started to warm up, my legs began to defrost. And then it happened...the chafing began to set in. The worst chafing I have ever had. I had to literally walk like some kind of cowboy from old western movies. Delayed Onset Chafing, no chance to ease into the pain....not good. Lesson learned: DO NOT LOSE YOUR BODY GLIDE.

Never fear, I found it since then. It's locked up in a safe and undisclosed location so therefore it will be exactly where I left it when it comes time to pack for Chicago and the BIG RUN.

'Til next time...

P.S. Ran my first race ever with my mom AND sister this weekend. You know my sister, she affectionately refers to herself as RunSis and would also be the one who told both my mom and I that she would NEVER EVER run and we should stop asking. Yeah, that one. She ran her first 5K on a pretty hilly course with some nice wind in her face Sunday AND ran EACH mile 1 minute faster than her fastest mile EVER, smashing her goal time by a minute+. But don't worry, she's beating herself up because she walked for a few seconds twice. Oh and did I mention she only started running a couple months ago and she has never run anywhere other than a treadmill. Go ahead...feel free to smack her around in the comments a little bit here. She deserves it ;-)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Snot Rocket Jeaoulsy, Pesto Puke, & Mace...My Run Last Night

And that pretty much sums it up. But you know I'm going to elaborate b/c brevity is the one word lacking in my vocabulary (or not, since I just used it...but I think you know what I mean)

My husband and I went out for a run last night. Our first (and only) run in training together for the Chicago Marathon. You see in June he had to have knee surgery and he's been pretty much sidelined since then. Well until the last couple of weeks anyway, but he's been TMing it (for those of you not familiar with my hip slang, that would mean running on the treadmill) and me too but since we can't really run on the same treadmill at the same time (or can we? Wouldn't that be interesting?) we've been running seperately. And my long runs that are actually outdoors on the much less forgiving pavement, have been, well, a little longer than he should be running at the moment (although I know he'd probably give it a valiant effort).

So yesterday, in the early AM while I frantically fed my 1 year old a mess of Turkey Rice dinner puree and cereal as she threw puffs on the floor and my 3 year old complained about her choice of breakfast being too spicy (??? I have no idea. It's not like I gave her a Mexican Omlette or something. It's cereal, granola bar or yogurt) as I attempted to get to the doctors office on time, my husband asked if I wanted to go run. "It's gonna have to be later I told him," and recited the to dos for the day.

After the dr's office forgot about us in the waiting room, (literally, they didn't put my 1 year old's chart out for the nurse, of course I was busy watching these guys clean a HUGE fish tank-which is really cool btw-and trying to keep my littlest girlie occupied so I didn't notice until 25 minutes later that people who came in way after us we're been seen in our place) and then finding out I needed a perscription for my little girl (she's totally fine, nothing major, just something minor we need to take care of. No worries :-), we headed home now time for a second round of food on the floor and meal complaints after which I'd need to get Madelyn her script. So when I got home and my husband asked, "Are we gonna go run?" I sadly had to tell him, (**sigh**)"not yet."

With the girlies fed and the littlest peanut down for a nap, I took my 3 year old with me to the store to get some groceries and pickup the perscription. Simple right? Nope. Not in my world. In my world, I get to the pharmacy and ask for the perscription they called in at 11:30 that morning only to find out it's not there and my daughter is not even in their computer (which I have no doubt is probably somehow my fault anyway.) So we add her and I call the dr's office to see what happened. Should probably take 5 minutes right? But in my world, I get put on hold for a good 5 minutes to finally have someone answer who hears out my problem and responds with, "one moment please," following which I am on hold for another good 10-15 minutes. Now I'd like to say no big deal, my three year old and I just went and got started on our grocery shopping while we waited, but that was virtually impossible because in my world if you move more than five feet from the pharmacy an invisible ray is sent to your phone to block your cell phone signal so that you are unable to communicate with the outside world during your shopping experience. Thus rendering you unable to call and verify if you needed something, or if a deal on a high priced item is good enough to fork over the dollars for. You're only solution is to spend spend spend and your spending without even the slightest possiblity of interruption from a ringing phone of a fellow shopper snapping you back into reality from a world of happy consumerism at its finest (it's all a purposeful plot).

So yeah...I had to stand there and wait while my 3 year old's sucker was quickly turning to stick and my time was running out (that sucker should have distracted for at least 1/2 the shopping trip I tell ya) Finally, a voice on the phone returns, "How can I help you?" she asks. Polite enough, but I thought somebody was ALREADY helping me. Nope, just transferring me I found out. Great. I recap the whole situation to which this more helpful voice says "Yes, I see here we tried to call the perscription in, but it didn't go through." Ok somebody tell me if I am just completely off base here, but wouldn't it have been a good idea to call and let me know that at like 11:35AM when they tried it as opposed to 3:00PM when I'm standing in the store wasting my time and looking like a fool for something that's not there?

Moving on...they resubmitted and I was on my merry shopping way and quickly headed for the deli where they also sell ice cream cones for $1 to see if I could now manage to find another way to keep my 3 year old distracted while I got the goods after her patience had already worn out sitting at the pharmacy for 1/2 an hour. Fortunately, for me it worked and the cone was an ooey gooey sticky mess but happily contained within the confines of the cart and the nine napkins I used to cover my child with. She LOVED it (cotton candy ice cream if your interested) and was a terrificly hysterical mess of smiles and ice cream to look at. It was great.

So we get everything and head back to the pharamcy where the pharmacist informs me my 1 year old's perscription will only be $134. Are you kidding me!? So this is another 10 minutes of sorting out my insurance information. Oy! Followed by...self-checkout lanes which I am passionately and morally opposed to. COME ON! I am a mom. I have lots of groceries AND I have little kids who by the time I get to check out have had all they can stand. Since Meijer refuses to staff more than two checkout lanes with actual people, the lines are across the store and I'm forced to either wait for who knows how long while my frozen food melts or face the self checkout lanes where I have to ring up, bag AND entertain my bored child while the machine malfunctions (goes a little something like this "sit down. SIT down. No, don't touch that. Put that candy bar back. Just wait a minute. Leave it in the cart. Don't you poke a hole in that! Stop licking that! No, I don't have 5 lbs of apples. Yes, it did scan already. It IS on the belt. WHY WON'T THIS MACHINE WORK!! I SAID SIT DOWN!!) and the one person they have to help ALL the self checkout lanes with flashing red lights runs around with like a chicken with her head cut off (thanks Grandpa for the analogy!)

I take my chances with the self checkout and was surprised to discover that Chloe has FINALLY reached the age where self checkout is fun and she can help. YAY!! (Imagine rays of sun bursting through the clouds from Heaven and a choir of angels singing Alleluia here please).

So we get through without too much trouble and head for the car. We are in the home stretch! EXCEPT in my world some lady with a blond ponytail and pink workout jumpsuit and headphones approaches. Now understand, when I am out with one or both of my girls I am on point and not very excited about strangers approaching us, especially at grocery store parking lots where you hear about weird things happening. So as I'm strapping, Chloe into her car seat, I see this woman looking at me and begin to approach. I keep an eye on her and am trying to get Chloe buckled as quickly as possible so I can shut the door and lock it and as it becomes clear she's headed my way, I survey the scene to see if she has accomplices and who's the nearest person to call for help (yeah, I know I'm probably a bit of a freak about this kind of stuff, but I guess I'd rather be safe than sorry).

"Excuse me," She says. "Are you nice or mean?" Now, what the crack kind of question is that? "Why?" I ask her to which she proceeds to inform me she's in communications and has to talk to 30 random people a day and she'd like to ask me a few questions. Ok besides the fact that I graduated with a BA in Communications and never once was given an assignment of likes where you randomly stalk people in a grocery store parking lot and ask them questions, this just seemed totally bizarro to me. She had nothing on her anywhere identifying her as anybody and besides, she was twice my size. I might have been able to out run her, fat chance I was leaving my little girl and I though I might be like a wild tiger if I thought someone was trying to harm my child, this lady could probably have had me for dinner if she wanted to (yep, I know the expression is lunch but I want to be able to say this...) Speaking of which, it was now close to dinner time, I had a cart full of groceries and I STILL HADN'T RUN! So my answer to her, "I'm sorry. I guess I'm mean today. I don't have time." She stuck around for a minute trying to convince me while I put stuff away, but could probably tell she was wasting her time so she left to harass someone else. (NOTE TO THE WORLD: Mom's with little kids don't like being approached by strangers at grocery stores, gas stations, etc. It's weird and scary even if you are being honest, be prepared for mom claws to come out, especially if we've been having one of THOSE days which you may not be able to tell because we do our best to put on our cheery mom exterior for our kiddos. JUST PICK SOMEON ELSE!)

...and finally we're back home, putting gorceries away, making dinner, feeding the girls again (MAN, it's like they eat at least three times a day! ;-) And before I know it, it's past 6:30 and darling husband is asking "So are we going to run or what?" Now, we're fast losing daylight and I just finished a bowl of pesto pasta but, what the heck? He takes over the last couple ounces of the baby's bottle while I go change my clothes, pack of the girls bedtime clothes (we're dropping them off at my parents, near the trail we run and Chloe had pre-school the next day so I was hoping to have her in pjs and asleep on the car ride home, although that was sadly, not to be). And finally, by 7:30ish PM we're running. Our first and only run together training for Chicago.

And it pretty much went like the title says. I was jealous of my husband's snot rockets (although also afraid I might get hit with one. Gag.) Because try as I might, I just don't seem to be able to fuel those babies the way they should be which just ends up being a mess on my face. So instead, I just deal with the unwanted nose companion until the run is finished.

Pesto puke...well...almost. Though his endurance might not be quite up to par with mine just yet, my favorite semi-homeade pasta dish is not necessarily the best choice of food for me at least not within an hour of my run. The constant burping and struggle to keep it in it's new home, my stomach, was a battle from the get go. Well, either that or the glass of wine I had at dinner was the problem. I've never run on a glass of wine before. So perhaps needless to say, I had to slow waaaaaaaay down, but the good news is we were forced to stick together through the whole run.

Of course, I must also mention the mace. First time, somebody's ever pulled that out on me. Our run was 6 miles. Starting so late meant that by the time we turned around at three to head back it was dark, real dark in some spots that are heavily wooded. But we weren't alone on the trails, though other signs of life were sparse. With about 2 miles to go, we slowly gained on a man bundled like that kid from a Christmas Story walking at a pretty good clip. As we approached from behind, he never turned around but raised his arm straight out. Something was in his hand. As we passed, my husband said hello and I got a pretty good look at the little spray can of mace he was holding. The man nodded and lowered his can after we went by and I couldn't help but wonder, really, how effective is that little can of mace if you never even turn to look at your attacker? I mean there were two of us coming and he never even took a peek behind him, much less prepped himself and took aim. Or maybe it doesn't matter with mace, I don't know. Maybe you can wipe out a crowd with one squirt in their general direction.

So that was that and I'm reminded of a friend once telling me, "I don't know how you can be a stay at home mom. I couldn't sit around at home all day like that." HA! I WISH I could sit around ONE day all day because in my world that NEVER HAPPENS!

And we're just a little more than a week 'til Chicago. OH and I should tell you all on Sunday, I will be running my first race ever with my SISTER! That's right, she's been bit by the running bug too, even asked me to make her a 1/2 marathon training schedule for the Disney Princess Half next spring. This from the woman who has repeatedly told my mother and I, "I WILL NEVER RUN." Honestly, I think it might even be more contagious then H1N1, so if you're a non-runner reading this, better watch out!

Til next time...
May all your snot rockets successfully reach there destination.

P.S. I am totally digging the smell of Chicken Tortilla Soup I'm making in the crockpot right now. I've got a great recipe, quick easy and SOOOOO YUMMY! Anybody interested?