Monday, December 31, 2007

Another nice run today

I took Kara to school at 8 a.m., and was seriously tossing around the idea of running right when I returned home. That is, until I saw the frost and ice -- yes, ice -- that was outside waiting for me. It was a balmy 25 degrees when Kara and I headed off to the preschool, and I knew right then a morning run was out.

I waited a couple hours to go running. It was about 40 degrees when I finally went. Much better, although still colder than I am used to running in. At least the ice had melted, though.

I ran to the bank and then to Kara's preschool, where Tim and Matty met us with the van. It was a nice run. I am loving the running tights still and the gloves. Tim said I look the part of a runner now. Yeah!

We're planning to got to Target later today, but I want to kick the new year off with a run tomorrow. Happy New Year, everyone!

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 4 miles
Time: 43:54
Pace: 10:58 minute/mile

Saturday, December 29, 2007

So I finally got a run in

I feel so refreshed right now!

I was able to sneak a run in this afternoon. I needed it so badly! Who cares if it was in the rain and my Garmin died because I forgot to charge it?

I got to try out some of my new running duds, including socks, running tights and a long-sleeved running shirt. I loved all of them! The tights are awesome because they keep everything from jiggling. And they make me look more like a runner, in my opinion.

I also wore my new running gloves that my inlaws bought me for Christmas. Now I want to train for a marathon. You can see why:



So if the HM goes well in May, I might just train for the next marathon here in October. If I do, I have gloves to wear! ;-)

So I am going to be adding some strength training to my regime in the new year. I got some $$ for the holidays, so I am buying myself a little gift:



It's the Weider Total Body Works 5000, a strength training machine. It's basically the same thing as the Total Gym that Chuck Norris and Christie Brinkley peddle, but it's a lot less expensive. I have read several reviews from people who own this particular machine, and they have all been positive. So I am going to order one and try it out! I really want to firm things up and gain some muscle and this looks like it will help. And it's something Tim can use too, so he can get buff also. LOL!

OK, that's it for now. I hope to run again tomorrow before heading off to a holiday dinner at a family member's house.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance (per mapmyrun.com): 3.23 miles
Time and pace: no idea

Damn again

Now Tim has the stomach flu. I just KNOW I am next in line.

I hope to get a short run in today when Tim gets up. I'm letting him sleep in since he's feeling crappy. I just hope I don't start feeling crappy before my run.

Will be back later to update.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Damn

Just when it looked like the kids were on the mend, Matty had to go and throw up again this morning.

I went into his room to get him up to take Kara to school, and there was vomit all over the floor. He is probably lying in some as we speak. I decided at the last minute to keep Kara home from school today because of all the vomiting and the fact that now I'm not convinced it's not a stomach flu.

Guess a call to the doctor will be in order today.....


*****UPDATE*****

I took Matty to the doctor today, and she said it is the stomach flu. Apparently it is spreading like wildfire around here right now. It is probably what caused Kara to throw up, also. Matty has definitely been hit the hardest by it, as he now has terrible diarrhea, as well. Poor guy. So we basically just have to wait for it to pass. Bummer.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Think we found the culprit...

...that has been wreaking havoc on the kids' stomachs the past two days.

It appears the milk they had been drinking was making them sick. I finally figured it out this morning after giving Kara some milk from that jug (Matty hadn't had any milk since the night before, and he threw it up immediately then) and then she puked about 10 minutes later. She hadn't thrown up since Wednesday morning, so I am pretty confident it was the milk causing the problems. I tossed it down the sink and gave them milk out of a new jug, and they both seem to be fine now. Matty actually drank two bottles of the new milk and now he is asleep (with no puke in sight!!).

Due to the illness and our weather (coldness and rain), I have been opting out of running because I don't want to take sick kids out in the rain (Matty still has a runny nose from a cold). So I rode the stationary bike while Matty went down for a nap and Kara played in her new indoor bounce house. Here's a pic of her from yesterday playing in it:



Today's stats:
Bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 7.53 miles

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Up to my elbows in puke

Last night was a rough one.

After three days straight of fun and holiday cheer, the kidlets ended up getting sick.

Matty kicked it off, throwing up in his bed sometime between 9 p.m. last night and 4 a.m. today. He woke up crying at 4, and that's when I discovered the puke. It was already dried all over his clothing, hair, face, bedding, etc. Ick.

I threw him in the tub to scrub the stank off. He was not happy. My mom helped by changing his bed sheet.

He was cranky, so I decided to stay up with him and rock him in the living room. I gave him some milk to help him get back to sleep. Bad idea. He ended up projectile vomiting on me twice between 4:30 and 6, when he finally fell asleep. I crawled back into bed and said to hell with the morning run I had planned in my head.

Then around 7:30, Kara woke up crying. My mom made it into her room first, and she had puked all over her bed, too! She was really upset because some vomit was on her hand. She didn't seem to care that it was all over her face and in her hair, too. So I had to clean her up and get her calmed down. She ended up watching cartoons with me for a little bit before running off to play. Guess she's feeling OK now.

Matty got up a little before 10 a.m., and once again he was covered in vomit in his bed. Ugh, how much can one little belly take? He got another bath. This time, he sat in the water with his eyes closed, moaning. He is so tired and not feeling well, poor little guy. I think he might take a nap soon, since he is so exhausted.

I want to run today and try out some of my new running duds, but I don't know if I want to take sick kids outside (my parents left for home, so I am by myself with the two pukemeisters). If I run, I'll come back later and post. I am just hoping I don't end up getting sick, too.

OMG, make it stop!! Matty took a nap and just woke up in vomit AGAIN!! So he had yet another clothing change and cleaning. Everything he's ingesting is coming back up right now. I seriously don't know what to do. :-(

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Motivation is in the crapper

I still managed a shortish run today, despite the fact my parents are here and the weather was rainy. Oh, and I was exhausted because Tim and I had a date last night (went to a concert) and didn't get to bed until 2 a.m. So my motivation was almost gone until I finally was able to talk myself into a four-miler. But I had to do it, as we went to Tim's parents' house for dinner tonight and I knew ahead of time I would want to pig out.

Tomorrow will be another busy day, as we will be going to Tim's grandmother's house for her Christmas celebration.

If I don't blog before then, Merry Christmas!

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: four miles
Time: 43:58
Pace: 10:59 minute/mile

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Pushing Santa's sleigh

So that's why my run felt so hard today!

Kara and Matty were sitting in the stroller giggling while I ran. Then I heard Kara sing a Christmas song. Cute, no? Then she said "Momma, you're pushing Santa's sleigh!" All I could respond with was "Oh." It's hard to speak and run with a jogging stroller at the same time when you're going up a hill. Go figure.

After I finished, I realized I was wearing a bright red fleece over a long-sleeved white wick-away shirt, and I had the sleeved rolled up a bit which made it look like I had big white cuffs. I was dressed like Santa from the waist up! Oh, and Kara insisted she go out for this run in her Halloween costume, which was a purple unicorn. So here is Santa pushing a unicorn in a stroller. No wonder people were smiling and waving as I passed by, as if I was in a parade.

Here's Kara in her costume, taken on Halloween (sidekick Matty was just a regular ol' horse):



Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 3 miles
Time: 32:50
Pace: 10:56 minute/mile

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Dang, it's nasty out!

I was planning a run today, but I just can't talk myself into doing it. I would have to run outside with the stroller and kids in this nasty weather. It is raining hard and really windy and just plain icky. Even though I have a rain hood for the stroller, I just don't want to deal with all that. I miss my treadmill and need to figure out what the heck is wrong with it. Or buy a new one.

So I will be doing a stationary bike workout a little later. I'll be back to post stats after it's over....

Back to add my stats. I only had time for 30 minutes, as I am babysitting tonight. I might do another 30 after the kids leave.

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 7.53 miles
Time: 30 minutes

Monday, December 17, 2007

Excited for Christmas!

The next week is going to be a busy and fun one!

First, my sister-in-law and her husband will be coming to town this week with their new puppy.

Then my parents will be arriving here on Saturday to spend Christmas with us. I almost never host Christmas, so I will be busy cleaning and getting things ready for their visit, since they're staying with us. Kara is excited, though, and so am I!

It was another rainy day here, so I rode the stationary bike instead of venturing outside. Nothing spectacular, for sure, but at least I got myself moving.

Today's stats:
Stationary bike ride:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 38:19

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Another rainy day run

I sure know how to pick my days to run, it seems.

(insert eye roll here)

It started raining lightly just before I left for my run today. As it progressed, the rain came down harder and the wind picked up. I decided to stop at five miles because I was soaked to the bone and starting to get cold, even though I was still running.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 5 miles
Time: 54:47
Pace: 10:57 minute/mile

Friday, December 14, 2007

Run of the exhausted mommy

I am beyond exhausted. Matty has been sick the past couple days (although doing better now), so I am working off very little sleep. Wednesday night, the poor guy hardly slept at all, and neither did I. I ended up rocking him almost all night. Then last night, he woke up just about every hour in a coughing fit, which woke me up, too. So in the past two nights, I think I've managed about seven hours of sleep.

Nonetheless, I plodded my way around the neighborhood tonight for a little more than two miles. I had to wait until Tim came home from work, so it was dark out, which didn't help with my sleepiness. The run felt icky poo (my eyelids were heavy the whole time, my left shin developed a cramp and I was cranky), but I was glad I finished it when I was done.

I am off to bed now (finally). I have a busy day tomorrow. I am planning a long run, followed by painting a medicine cabinet that has been sitting in our dining room for almost a year. Then I will be going out to dinner with a couple of my new biology friends to celebrate the end of the semester. I can't wait!!

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 2.25 miles
Time: 25:15
Pace: 11:13 minute/mile

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Got my final exam grade

I scored 98 out of 100 points on the final exam! So I earned 931.5 points out of a possible 900 points this semester! That equals 103 percent! LOL!! Definitely an A+ if I ever saw one.

I am so relieved and happy. But at the same time I am a bit sad, as I really loved this class. And my teacher, who was like a friend to me, is moving to Washington state this weekend, so I will probably never see her again. Bummer. She actually hugged me last night after I finished the final exam. And I gave her a Christmas card with my kids' pictures on it, which she loved.

I am planning a short run this afternoon. It is so cold today that I will have to bundle the kids up in the stroller. Heck, I'll have to bundle myself up, too! I will come back later and post my stats. :-)

OK, I am back now following my run. I ended up running to the bank and back. It is very chilly out there. Poor Matty's hands were icicles by the time we got home.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: four miles
Time: 44:37
Pace: 11:09 minute/mile

Monday, December 10, 2007

I am done!

I took my final in my biology class tonight. I am done with school until Jan. 22!

I know I did well on this final and will end up with my A+ intact. Of course, they highest grade the college allows to be recorded is an A, so all those extra points won't be reflected in my transcript, but that is OK.

I did manage short workouts yesterday and today. but I didn't have time to blog until now. I am planning on a run tomorrow after I get done babysitting for a relative. Will write more then.

Yesterday's stats:
Stationary bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 7.48 miles

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 7.53 miles

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Eight miles --- in the books!!!

I did it!! I ran eight miles today as part of the virtual 8 on the 8th run, put together by fellow runner and blogger Nancy! It was awesome!!

Here is my proof (Note: the time says it was 1:58 p.m., but I haven't set the time back to standard time. That is daylight savings time it is showing. It was really 12:58 when I finished):



I will start by saying this run went SO much better than I expected. Last night I was so nervous that I couldn't fall sleep. I was worried about everything. Would I be able to finish? Would I run out of water? Would I die somewhere in Mile 7?

All those fears started to fade after I started running. The weather was gorgeous today (partly sunny , but windy and quite chilly), so I wore a light fleece over my long-sleeved wick-away shirt and my totally stocked fuel belt on top of that. The wind turned out to be a blessing down the line, as it kept me from getting too warm in the fleece. The first miles were quite uneventful. My body felt good. My mind was cooperating (no psyche outs!)And I had some great tunes on my iPod to run to.

One of the best things I did was take a quick fuel break at the start of Mile 5. I brought a Gu along (gawd, I hate those things. So gross, but they work!) and choked it down in front of Ray's Food Place. Took a huge swig of water to push it down and took off again. About 20 seconds later, I started having a coughing fit and imagined that chocolate Gu ending up in a puddle by my toes. Luckily, that didn't happen and I kept on truckin'.

I was nearing Mile 6 when I realized that this was it, my final push toward the finish. I got a little teary at that thought. Heck, I wasn't even sure I could handle this distance and there I was, running it and keeping my pace below what my goal pace was. I knew at that point a half marathon was not out of reach.

The last two miles were again uneventful. That was good. I didn't die. I didn't fall and break an ankle. I didn't run out of water (woo hoo!). I ran eight miles, and felt really damn good when I was done.

I can't wait to run nine. :-)

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: Eight miles
Time: 1:28:55
Pace: 11:06 minute/mile (goal had been 11:15 minute/mile)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Everything but the kitchen sink

Seems I took everything and everyone on my run today.

I had to take the kids, which meant I had to bring a blanket and drinks for them. I took my Garmin, cell phone, iPod, water bottle and camera. And I ended up taking the dog, who sat in the storage bin underneath the stroller while I ran. When I was done running, he walked with me.

Here's a pic of the pooch. He's a seven-pound Yorkie (Sonia, his name is Spike).



And here's what the kids ended up doing. Kara fell asleep with her eye open (ewww) and Matty was snoring so loudly:



Since I was carrying a full load, I only ran two miles. Plus, my legs were protesting a little and I am doing the 8 on the 8th run this Saturday, so I am trying to take it easy until then.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: two miles
Time: 21:22
Pace: 10:41 minute/mile

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

I can see the light.....

Only six more days, and I will be done with my biology class!! I am excited, but a little sad, too. I have really enjoyed this class and made some new friends. Kristen and I are taking a class together next semester, and we have plans to go on excursions with our kids before our next class starts on Jan. 22.

So I still have an A+ in the class. Last night we cleared a major hurdle, as we had to give our presentations for our semester projects. It went pretty well overall. I am just glad that part is over. And we turned in our final drafts of our papers, so the only thing left is our final next Monday.

I hope to run tomorrow if the weather is good. Tonight, I rode the stationary bike while watching The Real Housewives of Orange County. Not too exciting, but at least I did something, right?

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 12 miles
Time: 46:23

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Well, blow me away!

I sure picked on hell of a day for my long run.

We went Christmas shopping yesterday, so I didn't work out. Of course a storm blew in last night, complete with rain, cold temps and really strong WIND.

And yes, I chose to run in that weather today.

I must be crazy. But I can't use the treadmill (it's still wonky), so I really had no choice.

So I put on my long-sleeved wick-away shirt, a windbreaker/rain jacket, running pants that I thought were waterproof (surprise! They're not) and a hat (which I rarely wear) and headed out to brave the storm.

Overall, it wasn't awful, but there were times when the wind was so strong that I felt as if I was running into a brick wall. And the rain was just persistent. And cold. Brrrrr.

So I ran five miles and was going to stop. But I was still pretty far from home, so I decided to run another five minutes to make it one hour even. And I ended up much closer to home so I didn't have to walk much in the rain.

And again, I am glad I went through with the run. It would have been so much easier to just sit in the house watching football all day. But then I'd feel like a slug, and I hate that feeling.

Today's stats:
Run (in the stormy weather):
Distance: 5.43 miles
Time: 1 hour even
Pace: 11:03 minute/mile

Friday, November 30, 2007

Just one of those runs

You ever have a run where everything just seems to go wrong?

That was my run tonight.

I waited until Tim came home from work to run. Matty has been sick the past few days, and it was quite cold here today, so I didn't want to drag the sickie around in the stroller.

Of course it was dark by the time Tim came home, so I figured I'd run on the treadmill.

My warm-up walk went fine. I started running on the 'mill, and it was OK, too.

Until I reached .4 miles. Then the damn thing stopped abruptly and showed some weird error sign on its readout screen. I have never seen this error sign before, so all I could say was " What the hell?!?!".

I turned the treadmill off, and unplugged it from the wall. Plugged it back in and turned it back on. I entered my info again (weight, distance, whatnot) and tried to get it going to 5 mph. The belt started moving. Then it stopped again. Argh!!

I tried once more to get the stupid thing working to no avail. But I was determined to get a run in tonight. So I threw on a sweatshirt, grabbed my Garmin and a flashlight and headed out into the darkness.

Naturally, I didn't put any running pants on, which was really not bright. I was wearing these knee-length spandex shorts and it was freakin' COLD out!! I thought about going back inside to change but realized if I did, I probably wouldn't come back out.

So I started off by the glow of my flashlight. As I ran, I noticed a lot of the street lamps either weren't on or went out just as I reached them. I actually tripped once because the sidewalk changed elevation at a driveway. Ugh. And wouldn't you know, but my effing flashlight died with about a mile left. So I had to run pretty much in the dark for 11 minutes. It's amazing I didn't get hit by a car or fall in an open ditch, because I couldn't see crap.

But I made it home in one piece, happy that I went through with the run. Now I have to figure out just what the heck is wrong with the treadmill. I will be VERY upset if it has died for good.

Tonight's stats:
Run:
Treadmill: .4 miles
Outside: 3 miles
Time (outside): 33:02
Pace: 11 minutes/mile

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Time crunch

No time for a lengthy post. I have to leave for class. But I did run on the treadmill today.

Today's stats:
Treadmill:
Distance: 3 miles
Time: dunno

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Finally did our Christmas cards

Well, it almost took an act of Congress, but I was able to get two decent pics of the kids today for our annual photo Christmas card. I ordered them through Snapfish this year, since Costco didn't have a style I liked, and they should be ready by this week.

I won't post the actual card here, but I guess I can share the pics I selected:






I didn't run today, but I did use the bike for the first time in a couple weeks. I will try to run tomorrow while Kara is in school.

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 38:22

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Today's run -- in pictures!

I didn't realize this was the weekend a bunch of my blogging buddies would be illustrating their blogs via photos. Marcy and Mary come to mind immediately. LOL!

I took pictures during my run today. My parents bought us a new camera for Christmas and I have been using it daily since it arrived on Friday. I love, love, love it!

Now let me share my run with you all. :-)

The view from my driveway (yes, it's a cemetery):



Garmin, taking forever to load:



Kara in her chariot (Matty stayed home with Tim):



Self-portrait before the run began. See the cemetery sign in the background?:



This subdivision is just around the corner from my house:



Going past the community hospital. This is where Matty was born. It is a SMALL hospital compared with the one in Redding where I had Kara:



Guess who fell asleep?:



Here's where we were heading: the local shopping center. We ended up ordering a take-and-bake pizza from Papa Murphy's. It was sooooo good!!!:



We're on the way home now, using a different route. This is to prove Fortuna is finally in the 21st century. We got our first Starbucks just a month or two ago (Lisa, this is for you!):




I would normally run up this hill, but not on days when I'm pushing the stroller:



When I was done running, Kara got out and walked home:




My distance and time, according to Garmin:



Thanks for coming along!

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 3.41 miles
Time: 36:42
Pace: 10:46 minute/mile

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Gobble gobble! Turkey Trot race report

I am about ready for a nap, so I will try to make this post quick. I think the turkey is working its sleepy-time magic. ;-)

This morning's Turkey Trot was tons of fun!! I didn't know anyone there, but ended up chatting with a woman who had never been to a race before. Turns out she's almost my age, has a son about the same age as my daughter and works in the field of nursing. We hit it off after she asked me if her race bib was on properly. She told me she would be walking (she did) and I ended up walking the last lap with her after I finished my run.

So this race course started at the gazebo in old town Eureka, where all the homeless people happen to congregate. I'm not saying that to be mean, but it just so happens that there is a large homeless population that hangs out there, by the waterfront. The course went in a loop that we had to complete 2 1/2 times. So we ran up one street, over and down another, next to the waterfront (which was cool) and then back into old town. More than 350 runners participated, making it the largest Turkey Trot here to date. And it was COLD! But the sun was shining, so the conditions were actually pretty good for a run.

I had no intentions of going for a PR today. I didn't even manage a warm-up, since I spent pre-race time talking to Jordie (the girl I had tons in common with). So once the race actually began, I was surprised to find myself keeping an 8:30 minute mile pace for about a quarter mile. And as I ran, there were pockets of homeless residents who were actually cheering us on! That was pretty cool.

I finished the first mile a lot faster than I wanted to, in a time of 9:33. The next miles were slower, but by the time Mile 3 rolled around, I knew I could set a PR if I wanted to. So I dug in my heels and thought about crossing the finish line with a smile on my face. Of course, the smile didn't actually materialize in the pic they snapped of me, but that's OK.

Here's that pic:



OK, here are my official stats:

5K race
Time: 31:24
Pace: 10:07 minute/mile (so close to the goal pace I have of 10-minute-even miles!)
Finished 152 out of 337
Finished 23 out of 38 in my age division

Coming back to add that I never posted a pic of my new kicks! I got a new pair of Mizuno Wave Alchemys (I heart them!) but didn't snap a photo of them before I started using them. Here is a pic off the Internet. They look identical to these:

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving (a day early) to all my running/blogging buddies!! :-)

We were supposed to have Thanksgiving at Tim's grandma's house tomorrow, but we might not be going after all. The kids are sick and now Tim is feeling punky. I guess we're all just passing the disease, uh, I mean, love, around.

Tomorrow morning is the Turkey Trot! I picked up my race bib and T-shirt today (it's a long-sleeved one made out of that wicking fabric - cool!!!). My number is 75, which is neat because that is the year I was born. Turns out this race is also a benefit for a local middle-schooler named Cameron Smith who was diagnosed with a brain tumor. So I get to race and support another good cause, which I am all for.

So Laurel has tagged me for five facts about myself. I will try not to bore you guys to tears, LOL.

But first, the rules of "tag":

-- link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog
-- share 5 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird
-- tag 5 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs
-- let them know they are TAGGED by leaving a comment on their blog.

Ok, so here goes.

1.) I love celebrity gossip. But not because I love celebrities. Quite the contrary, as I can't stand most celebs these days. But I love hearing about how messed up they are because it makes me feel good about myself.

2.) I am about the most straight-laced person I know (besides Tim). I have never tried any illegal drugs or even attempted to smoke. All that stuff is freakin' nasty, in my opinion. I have had a couple alcoholic drinks in my adult years, but I can count how many on my fingers (although I did have a Margarita when I tailgated at the UT game in Austin -- it just made me sleepy, which was no fun). So I guess I am a bit of a prude.

3.) Now that I've said No. 2, I will add that I really, really want some body art (read: tattoo). I have been thinking about it for a couple years and want something that will represent my kids (but not ginormous or anything). I want it somewhere I can hide it easily. (I can just imagine my dad freaking out right now because I admitted this. *sigh* But I am being honest here, folks! Although maybe I shouldn't be....) There's a girl in my bio class who has one on the back of her neck and you can see it when her hair is up. I don't want one that is obvious like hers. I would choose the route my sister-in-law took, where hers are on her lower back.

4.) I secretly enjoy the fact that my old workplace is going to hell in a handbasket. The organization has brought in a new editor and publisher recently (both are young, not local and quite stupid, from what I gather), fired a bunch of people (including the town's most popular local columnist) and is trying to make the news more "sensational." Because of this, subscribers and advertisers are leaving right and left. I still have bitter memories of how I was treated when I worked there, so I want management to suffer a little. But I do feel badly for the "worker bees" who are left to carry the burden. And I am very grateful that I got out when I did.

5.) I am a teacher's pet. LOL! I am doing everything possible to be the "perfect" student for my teacher because A.) I want her to know I am serious about learning, and B.) I want her to like me (she does, so no worries). I am really loving school so far now that I've been back, and I know I am more dedicated to it this time around than the first time. One of my friends/classmates called me "a machine" after she found out I aced the third test. LOL! So I guess that makes me a dork. I am cool with that.

So now I have to tag a couple people (I don't think I can find five who haven't been tagged yet. So I choose Mary, Randy and Nikki (I'm hoping it will get her to blog again!)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Night running

Tonight was my final run before the Turkey Trot on Thursday. I am getting really excited about it! The weather is supposed to be sunny, although cold, for the race. But at least it won't be raining! This will be my seventh race for 2007. My last race will be the virtual "8 on the 8th" that I will be doing on December 8.

This was an evening run, which meant it was done in the dark. Considering I have crummy night vision, it wasn't too bad. I kept a nice, relaxed pace throughout and felt really good when I was done. Of course, it's hard to run fast when you can't see the ground well and are afraid of tripping. But at least no one can see you in the dark if you indeed trip and fall! (I didn't, for the record.)

I missed mentioning a rather important anniversary last week. November 15 marked one year since I had my gallbladder removed. Having that surgery paved the way for me to start running again after years of inactivity. My first run was two weeks after the surgery, on November 29. So I am almost officially through the first year of running!! I have made such big strides so far, and I hope to make even bigger ones next year. My main goal right now is to run the Avenue of the Giants Half Marathon in early May. And maybe, if I like it enough, I will attempt a full marathon down the road. ;-)

Tonight's stats:
Night run:
Distance: 3.01 miles
Time: 34:19
Pace: 11:23 minute/mile

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Fastest three miles to date??

I don't know if I set a PR for three miles today, but if I didn't, I came mighty close.

I headed to the school track for my run, as I was already in town doing my bio lab for the week. I am not 100 percent well yet, but the legs were aching to run and I felt well enough to attempt it.

The first mile was pretty good. Around 1.25 miles, another runner hit the track and was running in front of me. She was quite a bit younger than myself and looked more like a "runner," but I digress. She was running 9-minute miles, according to my Garmin. How do I know? Because I kept up with her for 3/4 of a mile. Yes, I couldn't believe it myself. Had she run the whole second mile with me, I would have recorded my fastest mile ever (9 minutes). I still finished Mile 2 well under 10 minutes, which was awesome.

I told myself earlier that I was only going to do two miles and be done today, but when I looked at my Garmin after and realized I ran two miles in 20:05 (second fastest time ever), I decided that 20 minutes was not long enough for my workout. So I added another mile on for good measure. It was about a minute slower than the second mile, but I didn't care. I was just glad to be able to run and not feel like I was going to die.

Switching gears for a second: I just found out what my grade is for the third biology test I took last week. Out of 100 points, I earned 100! Again! I can't believe it! And I got 49 points out of 50 on my project rough draft! The average score for the class on that was 38.9 points. Woo hoo!!!! Out of a possible 590 points in the class to date, I have 614.5. This is not a typo! I have 24.5 more points than are even possible at this point! (Remember that extra credit?) Barring some awful unforeseeable disaster, it looks like I will easily earn the A that I was seeking in this class, since we only have about three weeks left. Woo hoo!!!! *happy dance*

Today's stats:
Run (track):
Distance: three miles
Time: 30:49 (might be a PR; I will check later)
Pace: 10:16 minute/mile
Note: My second mile was 9:45. Boo yeah!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Good and bad

Good things:

*I know I did really well on my bio test on Wednesday. I don't know my score yet, but I will be very surprised if I don't score at least 95 out of 100 points. It was SO much easier than the second test, which I got 92.5 points on before our teach added 10 points to everyone's score.

*It's the start of the weekend. Hallelujah.

*Thanksgiving is next week. I love this time of year.

*My family. It rocks.

Bad things:

*I am sick -- AGAIN!!! Or maybe still. I never really felt 100 percent after the first sinus infection, and now I have some lame cold that is making my throat hurt like heck.

*The kids are sick now, too. Matty has it worse than Kara, but I kept Kara home from school today just to be safe.

*I haven't been able to work out since Tuesday due to being sick. I hope to remedy that problem this weekend if my body will let me.

*I have homework to do this weekend. Major suckage.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

It's tired out

Man, I am just dragging tonight. And it's only 8 p.m.!

I babysat Garrett for about five hours today, and the kids ran around like crazies the whole time. Then I ran four miles to the bank and back to deposit a couple checks I had. I got to try out my new shoes, which was exciting, but I think I wore the wrong socks because I got rubbed a little on the sole of my foot near the arch. Oh, and I bought myself another pair of Mizuno Wave Alchemys because I have found they work best with my overpronation issue. I will wear better socks next time out, though.

But now my throat is getting sore on the right side, and I am freakin' tired! Great, just in time for my test tomorrow evening. Grrrr....

On a happier note, I will be participating in an eight-mile race on December 8. This race is different than the others I have done, however. I found it through and is being organized by a couple of my fellow runners/bloggers. I think they're calling it a virtual race because we will all be running eight miles, but we'll be doing it by ourselves, in our own towns, on our own route of our choosing. After it's over, we'll share our "race" stories and finish time. It sounds like fun! And it gives me a reason to push past the distances I have become accustomed to recently. :-)

Today's stats:
Run (with loaded jogging stroller):
Distance: four miles
Time: 44:17
Pace: 11:03 minute/mile

Monday, November 12, 2007

Rain and studying

So I didn't run today, either. It was rainy and windy here, but that wasn't the main reason I stayed indoors. No, it was because I spent all afternoon at Kristen's house, studying for our next bio test. We were joined by fellow student and mommy Kim for this study session. In all, there were eight kids age seven and under in Kristen's house today. Made me glad I don't have eight children. Ha ha.

I did ride the stationary bike this evening just to get some sort of workout done. Tomorrow I will be babysitting, but I hope to go running (and try out my new shoes!!) when Garrett goes home. :-)

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 37:02

Sunday, November 11, 2007

So much to do, so little time

Geez, the weekend came and went and Matty still doesn't have a bedroom.

Tim and I worked our heineys off this weekend, moving furniture, installing a ceiling fan and wiring our living room for cable in order to get the living room put together. It is mostly finished now, but we still have to move our old futon out and put our DVDs on the shelves we purchased. The room looks really nice, but now it will be an uphill battle to keep the kids from messing it up.

Meanwhile, our family room, which will soon be the office/playroom, is not even close to being done. We just didn't have time to do any more this weekend. So it looks like next weekend we'll have to do some more work to get that room set up and get Matty's room ready.

Of course, our projects didn't all turn out to be as easy as we'd planned. Take the cable wiring, for example. We had to run a cable from the outside box to our living room. It meant we'd have to drill a hole in two walls to run the wire through. Not a difficult task, right? It shouldn't have been, but we didn't know there was a cable in the wall right where we ended up drilling a hole to the outside. So we accidentally severed the entire cable that hooked up in the family room. So half our day was spent fixing that and running the new wire to the living room.

The second half of the day was spent installing the ceiling fan. Why do ceiling fan companies have to make installing their fans such a huge pain in the ass? Seriously, after screwing the 1,104th screw in place and getting frustrated after one fell in the casing, I told Tim that I was glad we didn't do this for a living. He laughed and said if we did, we wouldn't be married. So true. Installing fans for a living is way too stressful. But after what seemed like forever, the fan is up and looks beautiful.

Of course, all this work meant my study date with Kristen was called off and so was our run. But have no fear, as Kristen and I will meet tomorrow afternoon to study and run. I can't wait to try out my new running shoes. :-)

I am taking my tired, sore butt to bed. Night, everyone.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Gonna be busy this weekend

So not only am I going to get my new running kicks this weekend, but Tim and I will also be working on moving a few of our rooms around to create a bedroom for Matty. Finally!!! He has been in our room since his birth more than 18 months ago. I want my room back!

So we're going to move our TV room from the back family room to our front living room, move the office to the family room (which will also become a playroom for the kids), and move Matty's stuff into the former office, which is really a third bedroom.

We likely won't get it all done this weekend, since I want to rent a Rug Doctor and clean the carpets. I also have a study date on Sunday because time is ticking away before my next test. My goal this weekend is to get the family room furniture into the front room. If that goes done this weekend, I will be happy.

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 7.44 miles

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Saturday!

That is the day I am getting my new Mizunos!!! Yeah!!!

Just in time for my Sunday run, which I will be doing with my friend/biology lab partner Kristen. She used to run a few years ago but hasn't in a while. We were talking about it yesterday, and she decided she'd like to run with me. So we're going to study for our test on Sunday and follow that with a run.

I did manage another short run today. It was cold out, so I had to bundle the kids and myself up, but it was otherwise pretty good, albeit slow. I just can't wait to get those new shoes.

Today's stats:
Run (with loaded stroller):
Distance: 3.1 miles
Time: 35:25
Pace: 11:25 minute/mile

Monday, November 5, 2007

I need new shoes

I ran again today. I couldn't resist the awesome weather! Did a little jaunt with Matty in the jogging stroller to pick Kara up from school. Needless to say, the return trip was a lot more difficult since I had more than double the kiddie weight I had on the way down.

But the run was still good. I have now run five days since last Tuesday. That is pretty good for me! Of course I have been keeping the mileage shorter, but it's still good.

I realized today that I need new running shoes desperately. I've had these since February and they are getting really worn. I am hoping to have a new pair before the new year starts.

I have class tonight, so that's all for now. :-)

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 3.1 miles
Time: 33:47
Pace: 10:54 minute/mile

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Now I can relax. Sort of.

After several nights of researching, writing and editing, I finally finished my biology semester project paper! It is such a relief to have it done.

But our next test is coming up in 10 days, so I can't really relax yet. Actually, I don't think I'll be able to relax until the semester is over.

I ran again today. The weather was spectacular for November: sunny and warm. Everyone in Fortuna seemed to be outside today, doing yard work or exercising. It was nice.

I am going to try to up my mileage on the weekends slowly, and probably keep my week runs between three and four miles for now. I don't want to burn out again thinking I have to keep up with other runners. I am going to do my own thing and enjoy it.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: four miles
Time: 44:30
Pace: 11:07 minute/mile

Friday, November 2, 2007

Still chipping away...

...at my semester project. I am about 1/2 through now. Yay! But I won't feel relieved until it is done!

Despite the project, I managed another run this evening as it was getting dark. I like to call them my twilight runs. :-) My mantra right now is quality over quantity (in miles each time, that is), and tonight was another good one. I am so happy that loving feeling is returning to my running. For a while, it felt like the spark was gone. ;-)

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 27:21
Pace: 10:56 minute/mile

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Change of seasons

I love this time of the year. It is getting so cold here now that I wear a sweatshirt when I run in the evenings, like tonight. The only bummer is my evening runs will be coming to an end after this weekend thanks to the end of daylight savings time. I don't like running in the dark (I scare easily, LOL), so I will be sticking to daytime runs until spring.

Tonight's run was very nice. I took it nice and easy, not running as hard as I know I can. It felt like a nice, relaxed pace. Running slower allowed me to enjoy the scenery on my route, which was nice. I noticed the fog rolling in as dusk approached, the smoke wafting from chimneys, people rummaging at a huge yard sale. Things I wouldn't normally pay attention to during a faster run. I think part of the reason I was feeling burned out on running was because it had turned into a chore to just get faster and not enjoy the journey, you know? I want to enjoy the journey again, and if it means running slower more often, then so be it. :-)

Oh, and I want to add one more thing: I am sorry I haven't been posting on my fellow runner's blogs lately. I have been so busy the past few weeks and haven't spent much time on my own blog. I have a semester project rough draft due on Monday for my biology class and that is sucking my time away. Well, that and the kids, chores, sleep, etc. Hope you all understand and I promise to comment on your blogs when I have the chance! :-)

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 3.54 miles
Time: 40 minutes
Pace: 11:17 minute/mile

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

We're home

We are home from our vacation.

We had a wonderful time. I really liked Austin and wished we would have been able to spend more time there than we did.

The kids had a blast with their other set of grandparents.

Yesterday was a long one. We drove home from Auburn, which took about 6 1/2 hours. Then I spent another 4 1/2 hours in class. I was dog tired after all of that. But of course I stayed up late and then got up early this morning, so I am dog tired again.

But I did manage a run today. The weather is feeling more like winter here than fall. It was cold, cloudy and rainy today. It really reminded me of how the weather was when I started running last November. Today's run was at 6 p.m., so I barely had enough daylight to finish by. Last November, I ran past houses adorned with Christmas lights and decorations. Tonight, I ran past houses adorned with orange and purple Halloween lights and decorations. Kinda cool. I do love this time of year, even if I am much slower in my running. And the cold does seem to slow me down a little.

Oh, and I will leave you guys with a pic from our vacation. Tim and I tailgated with his sister, her husband John and some of their friends before the UT vs. Nebraska game (UT won 28-25) and had to take the obligatory "hook 'em" photo. And we're wearing matching shirts. Awwww.....



Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: 2.3 miles
Time: 25:29
Pace: 11:05 minute/mile

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I'm in Austin!

And yes, Randy, I mean Austin, TX. ;-)

We're visiting my sister-in-law Becky and her husband John. So far we've had a great time. Today we're prepping for the UT vs. Nebraska game. Tim and I are excited! We''re going to experience the joys of tailgating before the game. :-)

Becky and I did a run this morning. We ran around her neighborhood, which is beautiful. Lots of big houses, big shade trees and nice people.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: two miles
Time: around 24 minutes

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Are they sure it's October?

It sure doesn't feel like it's almost November here. We're still in Auburn, visiting my parents, and it's quite warm today. Probably about 30 degrees warmer than at home. Of course, it has been feeling more like winter there than fall, but still. So I plodded around the neighborhood on my run today, thanking goodness that I brought my fuel belt and water.

I warmed up for my run by doing some time on the elliptical. I kinda like that thing.

We're leaving tomorrow for Austin. I am hoping the stars will align and I'll be able to run in the morning before we leave.

Today's stats:
Elliptical:
Time: 20 minutes

Run:
Distance: two miles
Time: 22:25
Pace: 11:12 minute/mile

Monday, October 22, 2007

I didn't ace the second bio test...

...but it totally doesn't matter. I still got an A+.

That's because the majority of the students "bombed," as my biology teacher said in an email to me this morning.

Her response came after I sent her an email questioning the score that it showed on my account through the college. That's where all of our grades are posted. Since I am on vacation, I looked it up last night to find that out of 100 points, I scored 102.5. My first reaction: what the hell??? How can I score more points than are possible when I KNOW I messed up on at least one question?

Hence, the email to teacher Jen. I thought for sure it was a typo. But no, I really did score 2.5 points more than the total possible. That's because she gave everyone 10 additional points after seeing how badly most of the students did. Pity points.

I was one of the few who actually earned an A before the points were added; I had 92.5 points. That was fine with me, but obviously 102.5 is even better. That means my A+ margin is getting even bigger, as I have not missed any points so far and have additional points accumulated through extra credit and now this test.

How crazy is this? I never thought in a million years I would do so well in this class. And I am a little surprised so many people did so incredibly bad on this last test. Goes to show that studying really works!! :-)

Oh, and I did work out this morning on my dad's elliptical machine. We're at the parents' abode until we leave for Austin on Thursday. I am hoping to run tomorrow.

Today's stats:
Elliptical machine:
Time: 30 minutes

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Heading out

We're getting ready to head out on vacation now. But I did get up early to ride the bike for a bit. I tried to get up at 6:30, but it was so dark out and raining, so I rolled over and reset the alarm for 7.


Bye for now!

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 7.85 miles

Friday, October 19, 2007

"Don't slack off."

See the title of this post? That's what my horoscope read today. Just three words. Almost motivated me to work out this morning. Almost.

Instead, I went back to the doctor for the third time in five weeks. I am now on a third round of antibiotics, the third different kind in that timeframe. The doctor also referred me for a CT scan of my sinuses to see if I have any polyps hiding out there. He said that could explain why I'm not getting better. But I have to wait until Halloween to get it done, since I'll be on vacation starting tomorrow.

I will try to work out and blog while on vacation, but if I'm not around much you know why. First stop: Auburn, CA! Then Tim and I will fly to Austin, TX for a few days to visit his sister Becky and her hubby John. I am excited!! I just hope my head doesn't explode on the plane ride. LOL!

Good luck to my buddies with races coming up!!! Happy running!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Just scrape them out already

I am living in sinus hell.

Today, my sinuses acted up again. I was stuffy all day and my head hurt until I took some medicine. I just want to take a spoon and scrape those darn sinuses clean. OK, that sentence reminds me of scraping out a pumpkin for Halloween. How festive. But having sinus issues is getting really, really old.

The stuffiness and pressure sort of affected my workout today. I did a short Brick workout in my den, since it was storming here today. So I rode the bike for 20 minutes and got on the treadmill for a two-mile run. Well, about a mile into it I started getting a little dizzy and had to stop for a minute. I managed to finish and felt better after I cooled down.

I am thinking I might call the doctor again tomorrow to see what to do next, since we're leaving for vacation on Saturday. I don't want to be sick the whole time! :-(

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Time: 20 minutes
Distance: 5.25 miles

Run (treadmill):
Distance: two miles
Time: not sure, but it was around 23 minutes

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

So I didn't ace it....

...but I feel like I still did really well on my biology test last night. I know I missed at least 1/2 point (no biggie, really) on something stupid that I KNEW but blanked on. Stupid cellular respiration. I am pretty sure I got an A still, so I am trying not to think about it much now.

Meanwhile, last night I did another round of extra credit that has been offered, so that will help with the lab I will be missing next week while on vacation. So if I do get an A on the test, even a low A, I will still technically have an A+ in the class because of the extra credit and fact I haven't missed any points on any assignment/test until now. Our teacher did say she might grade this test on a curve if no one aces it. Fingers crossed! LOL!

I joined a Web site for runners recently called Runners Lounge. It's really cool. A lot of my blogging buddies are there, and it's a good way for us to share running info and tips. They have these cool flexible plastic bracelets that say "I AM A RUNNER" on one side and the site address on the other. I got mine in the mail today, and I seriously think wearing it helped with my evening run!! I don't know why, but it seemed to inspire me to think like a runner again, you know? Plus it's dark blue, and I LOVE blue!!

So I had a great run and ended up going farther than I originally planned. I probably would have kept going had it not been getting dark out. I think I will wear that bracelet every time I run now. :-) So thanks to Amy and Tom at Runners Lounge!

Today's stats:
Run (outdoors):
Distance: 4.25 miles
Time: 46:02
Pace: 10:50 minute/mile

Monday, October 15, 2007

Fun weekend

Tim and I took the kids to the pumpkin patch today. The weather was gorgeous and we all had fun. It's supposed to rain all this week, so it's a good thing we went today.

After that, I had to go to Kristen's house for a last-minute study session, and I took Kara with me. Our next biology test is tomorrow night. I am feeling better about it now, although I doubt I'll be getting 100 percent again.

I have to go to bed soon, but here's a picture of the kids and myself from today's excursion.



Today's stats:
stationary bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 34:36

Friday, October 12, 2007

Five things

I am copying my running buddy Lisa tonight. :-)

Five things I am thinking about:

5. $1,680.70. That is the estimate to fix the dent in my van that the police officer made.

4. I am darn glad I don't have to pay for No. 5 out of my own pocket.

3. I am leaving on vacation in eight days and haven't even thought about packing.

2. Everyone in Fortuna is using their fireplaces/woodstoves tonight, as the smell of smoke is everywhere.

1. I know No. 2 because I did an evening run, despite it being chilly and dusky. And it totally didn't suck. For once. Yay for that!

Today's stats:
Run (outdoors):
Distance: 3.25 miles
Time: 35:35
Pace: 10:57 minute/mile

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Aiming for a better week....

...next week.

I cannot wait to be past this next biology test. After next Monday, I should be feeling much less stressed.

I have been having such a hard time with working out lately. Just call it the fall blues, I guess. That, and the fact I am still freakin' sick after more than three weeks. I am just down in the dumps about it all. I NEED to feel healthy again. It's messing with my mind.

I am planning to run tomorrow, even if it's just a short on the treadmill while Kara's in school.

Today's stats:
stationary bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 37:05

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Best worst-case scenario

So I had to go to the local university today to conduct my experiment for my biology class semester project.

The experiment went great and I was able to reconnect with my college rowing coaches. It has been 10 years since I'd last seen them. They both gave me hugs.

I was walking back to my van, which was parallel parked at a meter (with time still on it). I couldn't see the front of my van, since it was parked facing downhill, and I was approaching from behind. Across the street, there were three cops milling about near two cop cars, along with one of those funny-looking meter reader cars. Great, I thought, they're busting some pot-smoking loser or something. This IS Humboldt County, after all.

I unlocked the doors, threw my bag in and started to put the key in the ignition. Just then, one of the cops hurried my way and motioned for me to roll down the window. I fumbled with the window button then opened the door instead.

Then he proceeds to tell me that a police officer hit my car! I got out and he pointed to the damage. Sure enough, there is a huge dent in my front fender and some additional metal "crinkling" elsewhere because of the impact. I immediately started crying, as if that was going to help me.

They thought I was in class and were going to leave a card and number for me to call them, but I happened to return early. I talked to the other officer and gave him my info. Then he told me that the parking officer (who is an actual police officer for the department) had been driving around looking at the meters when he got out for a second. The silly-looking clown car thing he was driving ended up rolling away and crashed into my fender. Of course the clown car, which had these huge metal bars all around the front, was not damaged.

The cop who hit me came over and said he felt awful. It's his first accident in 18 years on the job. Go figure. I told him he's lucky it didn't crash into the car of some steroid-fueled jock with anger management issues. He laughed, so his sense of humor was still intact.

The good thing is the city's insurance will pay for the damage so I can get it fixed. I am just happy (should I use this term?) that it was a cop and not some college frat-boy, who would likely flee in the BMW his parents bought him and leave me with a damaged car that my insurance would have to pay for. I've already talked with my insurance agency (took me FOREVER to get a real person, grrrr....) and they're going to contact the city's insurance company and call me tomorrow with an update.

Just thought I'd share my interesting morning.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Stormy day

It has been raining here today. Hard. Since I am still feeling not-so-great but wanted to run, I did a short run on the treadmill.

It really sucked until the last 1/2 mile. I need to get healthy so I can enjoy running again!!!

*sad*

Today's stats:
Treadmill:
Distance: two miles

Monday, October 8, 2007

Just call me cranky pants

I am still not feeling that great. I still have a cough and scratchy throat and chest. I am getting cranky over it. Grrrrrr.

I found out today that those crews working on the neighboring trees are cutting them ALL down. I thought they were just limbing them up and had to cut one or two down due to disease. Nope. My neighbor, whose property those trees are on, told me today that all the trees are going. They are towering trees that block out the sunlight to both his property and ours. And there are lots of them. I am cranky over this.

You can see the trunks of the trees in this pic I took in April. They are the huge ones in the background:



I have my second big biology test next Monday and need to study this week. I am cranky over that, too.

I am cranky pants. Hear me whine.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Slowly crawling out from under my rock

So I am still working on getting healthy again following this crappy illness, but I felt well enough to do a bike ride tonight. It has been days since I last worked out, but I really don't feel bad because I was so, so sick. I have a bit of a cough and raspy throat right now, on top of the sinus pain, which is finally subsiding.

Yesterday I went to the Apple Harvest Festival with Kara and my new mommy/biology class friend Kristen and her kids. We left Matty and Tim home because Matty was under the weather. We had a really good time!! We sampled apples and cider, took a hayride through the town and the kids played in a bounce house. Good times. I think I will go back next year.

I think Kristen and I will get the kids together again before Tim, the kids and I head out on vacation Oct. 20. It is so nice to have a friend who is my age and has similar interests!! It's been a long, long time since I've had a "girlfriend." LOL!!

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 10.15 miles
Time: don't know, as I had to stop 1/2 way through and get Kara a book (she's supposed to be in bed asleep!!)

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Now I know why...

...my mojo has been slow to return.

Because I am STILL not over this freakin' sinus infection!!

I haven't been feeling 100 percent since I first went to the doctor three weeks ago. I've been tired and had headaches still. But then yesterday it started getting REALLY bad again and I knew this sinus infection was still holding on.

I just got back from the doctor and he prescribed me a different antibiotic. I have to wait for Tim to pick it up later today after work. That is partly because I feel like crapola, and partly because I can't get out of my driveway. The fabulous city of Fortuna decided this week would be IDEAL for cutting down the huge limbs on these big trees that stand near my house. All day yesterday they were working on it. Today, they have their damn trucks parked IN MY DRIVEWAY and the entire road in front of our house is blocked off now. I had to park the truck down the street when I got back from the doctor's office. And come to find out, they've actually taken one of the trees down completely. Some of the crew members apologized about it, and I said it's OK, but I really wanted to tell them to shove it. Oh, I am sooooo not in a good mood! Grrrrr.......

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Happy anniversary!

Today, Tim and I have been married eight years.

Wow, that sounds like a long time!

But not that long when you consider we've been together 13 years. We were both "babies" when we met: I had just turned 19 and he was a day shy of 18 that first meeting in speech class.

A lifetime has passed since then, it seems. So many crazy and wonderful things have happened to us since 1994.

Happy anniversary, Tim! Here's to the next eight years!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Blast from my past!

I am quite excited!! Next Wednesday, I will be meeting up with Robin, my old rowing coach from college, for the first time in nearly 10 years!

She and some members of the women's rowing team at Humboldt State will be working with me on an experiment for my biology class semester project.

I cannot wait to see her! She and I got to know each other very well during my two years on the team. There are times when I really, really miss those rowing days. They are among my favorite college memories, for sure.

Even though I want to show my kids off to her, I decided not to take them. Kara will be in preschool that morning, and my father-in-law has agreed to watch Matty. It will be much easier to get work done without them around, truth be told. Maybe at a later date I will take them to the university to meet her. I have already told Robin that Kara could be a future crew member, as she is very tall for her age and rowing coaches really seek out taller rowers.

Anyway, I rode the stationary bike tonight for my workout. I had some of my favorite tunes playing on my iPod, which made time go faster. I plan to run tomorrow.

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 34:29

Monday, October 1, 2007

Maybe, just maybe....

... I am getting my running mojo back??

I did an early afternoon run today for the first time in weeks. I ran to the preschool to pick Kara up. A little before noon I strapped Matty into the stroller and headed out. It rained on and off all afternoon yesterday, so it was pretty humid today. There was a nice breeze which helped.

The past few weeks, it has taken a lot of mental fortitude just to head out the door. Not today. I knew what I wanted to get done and that if I was going to do it, it had to be right then. See, I have class tonight, and I am switching from the Wednesday lab to Monday lab so I can work with my new friend Kristen. She and I are both excited to have the chance to be in lab together. We're planning a playdate for the kids for next Sunday, also. Woo hoo for mommy friends! :-)

So it was either run at noon or not run at all and take another day off, something I was not willing to do.

It went pretty well. There are a couple hills on the way back from the school but overall I ran faster than I did on Saturday despite the fact I was pushing the stroller. Not bad!

I hope I am rising out of the funk I've been in and my running will pick back up this month. Today was a nice confidence booster.

Oh, Kara is singing along to The Little Mermaid right now. She knows just about all the songs! Guess that happens when you watch it every day. :-)

Today's stats:
Run (outdoors with stroller):
Distance: four miles
Time: 43:43
Pace: 10:55 minute/mile

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Change of scenery

Today we visited the inlaws. I took my running clothes, hoping to get a run in while we were there.

My mother-in-law graciously agreed to watch the kids while I went running (thanks again!). So I set out for a four-miler under clear blue skies. It was gorgeous out!

The run was good, although there were some slight hills that slowed me down a bit. I am definitely not used to running hills anymore. I need to do something about that. But overall it felt good to be out and clear my head of all the stresses of the past week.

We might get rain tomorrow, which will be a good thing because we need it badly. Maybe if it's not too bad I'll venture out for another run. I am hoping to get out of my rut and back into good running days again! Maybe I am on my way.....

Today's stats:
Run (outdoors):
Distance: four miles
Time: 44:54
Pace: 11:13 minute/mile

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Mind games

For some reason, this month has been a tough one for me regarding my running. I have been much busier with school and all, but my overall motivation for running has taken a dive. I mean, I am very glad after I do it, but it's a little harder mentally to get it done. I hope I'm just having an off month, you know?

But I did run today at the track. Only three miles. Even though mentally it was tough, I still set a new PR for that distance. I have no idea how I did it, but I think the fact Tim and the kids were there with me made me run faster. Tim was really hungry and I knew it, so I guess I felt I had to get done faster so he could get something to eat. LOL.

Tomorrow's a preschool day for Kara, so I might take advantage of her being gone and do a couple miles on the treadmill. If I can get Matty to go back to sleep, that is. If not, I will probably strap him into the stroller and do an outdoor run. I just hope the motivation doesn't wear off before morning. Guess I'll go to bed soon so I can at least get some sleep and feel rested. I haven't had a good night's sleep all week. Maybe that's why my motivation is in the crapper.

Today's stats:
Run (outdoor):
Distance: three miles
Time: 30:29 (new PR; old one was 31:07 set on July 14)
Pace: 10:09 minute/mile

Splits:
Mile 1: 10:30
Mile 2: 10:20
Mile 3: 9:39 (wowza!!)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Gonna toot my horn

So I got the results back today from my first big biology test, taken last week.

I just knew I had done well after I finished taking it.

I didn't know how well until tonight.

Out of 100 possible points, I received 100. :-) Only one other person in our class (of almost 50 students) got 100 points.

Overall, 11 people got an A, 11 a B, 10 garnered a C, 4 received a D and a whopping 11 earned an F.

Teacher Jen wrote little green stars on the front of my test. ;-)

I did just fine.

Out of a total of 140 points for the entire class, I have earned 160. Thanks again, extra credit!

I will really not be happy now unless I keep this A until the end of the semester. I don't see why I wouldn't, though.

Coming back on to add my stationary bike ride stats from tonight. :-)

Today's stats:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 36:54

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Ahhh! Much better!

I got out for my first long run in a couple weeks today. All I can say is I really, *really* needed it. I was starting to feel totally funky (not in a good way), so going for an outdoor run was a great way to help with my blahs.

I went to the middle school track again, thinking I would run the whole time there. Well, about 3.5 miles into it I got bored and headed out on the street. I ran a little more than a mile through downtown and finished the last 1/2 mile on the track. It overall was a very good run. I don't think I PR'd this time, but it felt good to be back at it. Plus, the weather was spectacular today!

***Coming back to update***

I just went back through my previous posts and found that I DID set a PR for five miles today! My old PR was set WAY back in July. Cool!!!!

Today's stats:
Run (outdoors):
Distance: five miles
Time: 54:20 (new PR; previous was 54:48 set on July 22)
Pace: 10:51 minute/mile

Friday, September 21, 2007

Conquering the world, three miles at a time

The title kinda says it all, no? ;-)

At least I was able to run today. I hopped on the treadmill while Matty napped and Kara watched The Little Mermaid -- AGAIN. That girl just LOVES that movie!!

I only felt well enough to run three miles. And I didn't keep track of the time. Today was one of those days where the time didn't matter to me. I just wanted to get it done!

I am hoping to feel better this weekend so I can run longer than that. Actually, I might try to do another short run tomorrow and then a long one Sunday. That would be perfect.

Today's stats:
Run (treadmill)
Distance: three miles
Time: didn't keep track

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Sick or well??

I don't know.

I am still "getting over" this sinus infection, but I sure didn't feel like I was getting better today. Let's just say I took a step or two back in my recovery. My head got all stuffed up again and I felt generally unwell. So I didn't run. I didn't have the energy, and that sucks. I am hoping tomorrow will better and I can run then. Please, oh please. This month has been really, really crappy for my running, and I want to rectify the situation, but it's so hard when I'm feeling ill!!

I did use the bike tonight, since I felt like I *had* to do something. I even cranked the resistance up a few notches. Better than nothing.

On a happier note, I took my first biology test last night and am fairly sure I aced it. I knew the answer to every question on the test. I literally started beaming when I saw the test questions. It couldn't have been better had I written the test myself. I am so glad I really enjoy this class. Actually, I am really enjoying being back in college. I know I am more motivated this time around to do well,and so far I am doing everything right. I will know what my test score is by next week, but let's just say I am not worried in the slightest. I don't think I've ever felt this confident following a test. :-)

OK, time to wrap this up. Hope everyone has a great Friday!

Today's stats:
Bike:
Time: 30 minutes
Distance: 8.09 miles

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Squeezing workouts in

It seems like my recent workouts have been squeezed in when I have time. I have been so busy with class and studying that working out has been secondary. But I am still doing it!

I have my first big biology test tomorrow, so I hope this weekend I will feel a little less stressed and be able to do a long run. The good thing is I feel about as well-prepared as I can be for this test, as I have been memorizing everything and studying every day. I am hoping it won't be as hard as we all think!

I got my grades for my second lab and the extra credit lab I completed. I got perfect scores on both! So now I have earned 60 points out of a possible 40! Thanks, extra credit!!! ;-) It's a good thing I am ahead of the game, because I will be missing a lab next month because we're going on vacation. So I need all the extra credit I can get!!!

Today's stats:
Stationary bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 34:28

Monday, September 17, 2007

Back at it

I ran tonight after taking five days off to rest. It felt pretty good. I only did three miles because I ran after my evening class and it started getting dark. Better than nothing, right?

I have to study for my test Wednesday. Later, gators.

Today's stats:
Run:
Distance: three miles
Time: 31:50
Pace: 10:36 minute/mile

Saturday, September 15, 2007

What is Blogger's deal???

I am so very irritated with Blogger right now.

I have had two comments the past 24 hours or so, and tried to approve them (one was from Marcy, the other from Mary). Well, even though I clicked on the correct link to approve, Blogger said I rejected them! And then it won't let me "retry", saying the comments have been moderated. WTH?!

So I guess for the time being, I will again disable the function that allows me to preview and post your comments. If I don't, I don't know if anyone's comments will see the light of day.

Sorry ya'll.

Oh, and I hope to be running again by tomorrow. I really, really miss it.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Down with the sickness -- UPDATE

***UPDATE***

I went to the doctor this morning because my head was in excruciating pain, and I have yet another sinus infection. Thank goodness I went though, because now I have some antibiotics and painkiller for my throat and head. My head is pounding right now though, and I can hear my pulse in my left ear. Ewwwwwww.

Tim managed to come home early to watch the kids so I can rest. I have been sleeping most of the afternoon. I will be heading back to bed in a second, but I just wanted to update ya'll on my ills. Being sick sucks!

----------------------------------------
Oh, I feel like I am dying this morning.

I went to lab last night, and started feeling progressively worse as time went on. By the time we got out at 9:30, I seriously thought I wasn't going to make it home, I was so dizzy and my throat was killing me!

I stopped by the store to get some meds (NyQuil and DayQuil), along with some 7UP for the throat. I don't know why but 7UP always seems to help soothe it. Then I watched Top Chef (all groggy-like) and climbed into bed.

I am up now because at 3 a.m. I awoke feeling like poop again. Off to take more NyQuil. I also took my temp, and it was 102.7. Yep, I am definitely fighting off something. Probably the same disease Kara and Matty are wrapping up.

There will be NO workout for me today. I think I will be lucky if I get off the couch at all. I doubt I will work out tomorrow, either. I HATE being sick! Bah!!!

Oh, but the awesome news is that I was in a different lab group tonight and it was much better than last week. Hallelujah. We officially got our labs back from the first week (I already knew I got 20 out of 20 because I checked on the Internet, where she posts our grades). No one in my group got a perfect score beside me! I think they all got 17s. One of the girls asked me how I did, and I was almost embarrassed to tell her. I just didn't want them thinking I was gloating or anything. But I was so happy!

All right, back to bed now. Hope everyone has a great Thursday. :-)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I am irritated...

...literally.

My pinched nerve in my lower back has started acting up again, after being a good nerve for a couple months. It is manifesting in pain above my left hip again. Ugh. I haven't been running as much as I want to because of it. But I did manage a treadmill run today while Matty napped. I have an appointment with my chiropractor on Friday.

My throat is also a bit irritated today. I woke up with a slight sore throat, which is progressively getting worse as the day wears on. The kids have been sick lately, so I am not surprised I am starting to feel ill now. It's bad timing, since I have a four-hour class tonight. Blah. I will probably take some drugs with me because I don't want to suffer through class with a sore throat. I HATE sore throats!

Have to go now. Need to shower before Tim gets home. I don't want to show up for class as a sweaty mess.

Today's stats:
Run (treadmill):
Distance: three miles
Time: I forgot to look at the timer, but it was around 34 minutes

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I shall dominate my biology class

;-)

I got my first grade for my first biology lab, and I aced it!! Twenty points were possible, and I got all 20! Yay!! I am so happy!! The average score for the class was 16.26. So I am better than average! ;-)

My next lab is due tomorrow night, and I hope to get 20 again. Plus, I will be getting extra credit with that lab because I showed up to class last week, even though it wasn't mandatory, and I did the work. I am definitely on the right path!

Of course, our first big exam is next week, and I am worried about it. But our teacher did post a study guide so I know what will be on the test. As long as I study and memorize everything, I should be fine. *fingers crossed* I am meeting with my classmate Kristen on Sunday to study (she's the one who's my age). She has kids, so I'll be taking the rugrats along so they can play. :-)

I rode the bike tonight. To answer Mendy's question from a couple posts ago, I do my bike workouts on an indoor stationary bike. I do have an outdoor bike, but it's a mountain bike and is not in the best shape. It has been forever since I've used it, and it needs to be fixed in a major way. Not sure if I will fix it or get rid of it for a new bike later on. It is a 12-year-old bike, after all.

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 10 miles
Time: 35:22

Monday, September 10, 2007

I am tired

Tonight's entry will be short, as I am very tired.

Today's highlights:
*Kara got stung on her thumb by a yellow jacket at school today. She freaked and the teacher had me come to the school early. She's fine, though.
*I found out my first biology test is next week.
*My 49ers won! Close game, though.
*I ran on the treadmill, but it was so unspectacular I almost shouldn't mention it.
*Um, that's about it.

Today's stats:
Run (treadmill):
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: didn't keep track, and don't really care

Saturday, September 8, 2007

OK, so *THAT* was hard!!!

Wow, you guys. I seriously had the most difficult race to date today!

It was the Soroptimist/Arcata Fire Department 5K in Arcata, CA. This is the same town that hosted the hilly Tim Brownlow Memorial Run last month.

I was hoping beforehand that the course would go through downtown Arcata where it's flat. Much to my chagrin, the map of the course showed it would go east from the downtown area to the Arcata Community Forest. Now, this area is beautiful (redwoods everywhere), but the downside is the course was pretty much uphill the entire first half. And about a mile of it was on dirt trails in the forest (and half up steep hills), which I am not accustomed to running at all.

I knew before we started there would be no PR this race. I was thinking I would be happy to finish under 35 minutes.

So we all gather in front of the Arcata Firehouse before the race kicks off. About 120 people total did either the 5K run or a two-mile walk. This race raised money for a new firehouse for Arcata, which they told us will be built in the next few years.

At 10 a.m., they cued the firehouse siren to go off, signaling the start of the race. Oh, before we started, I ran about 1/3 of a mile to warm up. Good thing I did, because almost right out the gates we started an uphill climb. This climb continued from F Street to 11th Street. On 11th Street it went downhill a little, only to go back uphill again. OK, so far, so good, despite the hills. We made our way to Union Street, down Union a little way to the entrance to the park. This is where it started getting rough. The road starts going up these steep switchbacks that just go on and on and on. Lots of people started walking by this point. I kept plodding along, thinking the road would go back down soon. Wrong.

I don't know how long it took, but eventually we ended up at a trailhead that led into the forest. And the hill just continued. I'd say about 1/4 mile at least of trail was one continuous uphill climb. At one point, I did have to walk because running really sucked at this point. Plus, the dirt and tree roots provided tricky terrain, especially since the area was completely shaded because of the redwoods.

FINALLY we reached the top of the hill and started our descent. That was the one good thing about this course: the second-half downhill. Of course, I was pretty tired, but once my legs started feeling the downward momentum, I just followed their lead. I guess that part of the race flew by, because we were headed the same way we had come and I knew it wasn't that much farther.

As I neared the last corner before the finish, I saw Tim (with the camera) and the kids waiting for me, as well as the photographer for Six Rivers Running Club. I smiled and waved for both cameras (which were on opposite sides of the street) and turned the corner. I was so happy to see that finish line!!! My finish time was a lot better than I had hoped, especially since I walked a little.

Oh, and the organizers served the BEST PIZZA EVER after the race. It was provided by Don's Pizza, Donuts and Deli in Arcata, and I can only say this pizza was totally worth all the sweat and pain. LOL! It was truly gourmet pizza. I had a slice of the Pesto Veggie pizza, while Tim had some Gourmet Spicy Chicken. I seriously cannot remember having a better slice of pizza in my entire life. I think if I lived in Arcata, I would eat there all the time. :-) OK, I sound like a commercial, but it was seriously that good!

Just a couple pics:

Me waving like an idiot:



Matty:



Kara:




Race stats (unofficial):
Distance: 5K
Time: 34:18
Pace: 11:02 minute/mile


****UPDATE****
Here are the official stats, just posted:
Time: 34:21 (bah!!)
Pace: 11:03 minute/mile

50th out of 59 (not so great, but not last!)

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Kickin' ass and takin' names

That's what I was doing in my biology lab last night.

LOL!

We had an extra credit lab last night. That is because half of our class goes to lab on Monday and the other on Wednesday, but Monday was a holiday so those students didn't have class. To make things fair, instructor Jen made last night's lab optional and will give those who complete the work extra credit. Boo yah!!!

So the lab was about pH and buffers, something I knew little (very little) about until last night. We had to work in groups of four, which were assigned by which table we happened to sit at. Unfortunately for me, my lab partners were idiots. One of the girls was a total bitch, while the other girl (I think she was a girl; she was SO butch!) did nothing and ended up leaving early (I was secretly happy about that). The guy was a slacker who did little, also.

We had to do two experiments in lab. The first one was testing the pH levels of different liquids, making tables of results, and seeing if crushed-up Rolaids make a good buffer. For those who are not biologists (join the club, LOL), buffers are basically solutions that resists changes in pH when small quantities of an acid or an alkali are added to it. It was actually fun.

Our second experiment was one we had to come up with ourselves. My totally useless partners (now sans butch girl) sat around with their thumbs up their butts while I came up with our experiment and got it approved by Jen. Most of the other groups decided to test if milk makes a good buffer. I thought it would be much more interesting to see if one of the other liquids would act as a buffer against sodium hydroxide (a basic solution). I chose grape juice (we had just a few options). So I designed the entire experiment (which Jen told me was the best one of all the groups, oh yeah!) and carried it out while bitch girl scowled and slacker dude, well, slacked. Jen said I rocked it and I actually understood it, too!!! That was the best part, I believe. :-)

Only three students stayed the entire lab session (we could leave after our second experiment was done). The three of us are considered the "older" students. I spoke with Jen about my awful lab partner experience, and she sympathized and told me to sit somewhere else next week and see if there are better people to work with. The two other "older" students told me they'd love to work with me in lab, but they're in the Monday session. Bah! Jen told me in a couple weeks I could transfer to that lab if I want, since people usually drop out by that time. I think I will do that.

I want to surround myself with the people who are my age and are there for the same reasons. Kristen, one of the older ones who stayed late last night, is also 32 and has five kids (three biological), a husband and full-time job. She also wants to go into nursing, but eventually wants to be a lactation consultant for new moms. She and I exchanged emails addresses, so I think I might have a study buddy!

I know this will sound so snooty, but I have no use for 19-year-old lab partners who are there because they have to be, not because they want to be. And you can tell easily who those people are. It's frustrating, especially since I WANT to be there.

Switching gears, I did sneak in a workout tonight. Just a bike ride. Matty has been sick and had a hard time sleeping last night. He has lots of phlegm and a very stuffy nose. It was so bad I went to the store at 5:30 a.m. to get him some meds. Then, after I gave it to him, he went into a coughing fit and projectile vomited all over me, himself and the floor. Ick. He threw up twice today, but by bedtime tonight he seemed to be feeling a little better already.

Today's stats:
Bike:
Distance: 12 miles
Time: 45:33

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Two freak outs ... and a goal

I had two freak out incidents within about 20 minutes today. Fun.

The first one happened when I picked Kara up from preschool. All the three-year-olds were out front playing when I arrived. Matty loves to come and join the other kids, which I allow him to do for a few minutes while I talk with Kara's teacher and pick up her stuff.

Teacher Ronnie (Kara LOVES her, and so do I) and I were chatting about college courses when we turned our heads just in time to see Matty fall face-first on the concrete. I mean, he just splayed out and the sound his body made was kinda sickening. I ran over to him and he was doing what we call the "silent cry." His face was beet red, his mouth was wide open and tears were forming, but no sound was coming out. I hate that cry. It always scares me. I looked in his mouth, and sure enough there was blood everywhere. I took him into the bathroom and cleaned him up. Thankfully, his teeth were all OK (I was so worried he'd either chip another one or knock one out), and the blood stopped quickly. Two minutes later, he's back out playing like nothing ever happened. He does have a fat lip now, though.

Second freak out happened on the way home. I took our dog, Spike, with us to pick Kara up from school. He's a Yorkie and loves to ride in the van, so I figured what the heck. On the way home, Kara and I decided to stop by the local strawberry patch and buy a basket of fresh-picked strawberries (they are SO good!!!). I stopped the van, left the kids and dog in the car while I walked 15 steps to the fruit stand. What I forgot to do was shut the door completely. I paid for my berries, got in and drove off.

About three minutes later, I realized the dog wasn't in the car. Cue freak out mode. I turned around as fast as I could and sped back to the strawberry stand. As I got out of the car, the man I bought the berries from asked me if I was looking for my dog. He saw Spike running around the parking lot and herded him inside the stand, thinking his owner would return soon. I was relieved yet mad at Spike at the same time. And I was angry at myself because I hadn't put his collar and tags on this morning because we were only going for a quick trip. Lesson learned.

Nikki asked me what my goal is for this weekend's 5K. I am thinking I would be happy with a time of 31 minutes or faster, but I don't know if that will be possible. The course is in Arcata, near the course I ran in August, which was so hilly and difficult. So if it's hilly, I would be happy with a time of 32 minutes. But really, I am just happy I can run, so if I don't meet my goal it's no biggie. :-)

I have class tonight. I decided not to work out today, since my heart already had enough stress this afternoon. LOL! I will resume tomorrow. :-)