Thursday, August 22, 2013

Getting Back the Mojovation

A few favorites from around the web as I get my blogging legs under me again.

Love that word, mojovation. I didn't make it up, can't take credit, but teachers borrow liberally, so its ok right?  I heard it on a podcast by Another Mother Runner. Do you listen to them? If not, you should. Find them here.

Know another blogger I love is Rants From Mommyland. She lives in my area and I occasionally see her at Target. This is funny because Target factors heavily into some of the themes that are consistently touched on in the blog. She used to write with a good friend, who went on to get a fulltime job or some sort of nuttiness, but has carried on. And I am glad. Today one of her good friends totally altered my memories of Sweet Valley High. Did you read those books? I read MANY of them and apparently I can blame Jessica for any poor self talk I gave myself. Yikes. Even worse, the comments sections pulled out VC Andrews out of the memory bank. Something was just not right about my mom letting me read those books. Makes me wish I had the energy to read the books my kids do. *sigh*

Another thing that makes me happy? Huffington Post pulls together the best parent tweets of the week each week. I don't have to open twitter and they always make me laugh. Always good for a stress break.

This you can't go see, but I can tell you all about it. So, my son has become interested in football, as one would imagine with his dad being a big football fan and huge fantasy football player. I stick to the one pool my old roommates run where I have to pick one real team to win each week. Easy enough. Well, my son wants to join a league. Since all the leagues my husband plays in are 1. well established and 2. require money to exchange hands, he decided to create a family league. So now I have a fantasy football team. I have no idea what to do with them. I had to come up with a name, so I chose Caligirl. Not much of a football team name now that I think about it. I should have just named it "computer", as I fully intend to embrace technology and let the silly site do as much as it can for me.

My daughter has lice again. *sigh* what more can I say? I didn't listen to the warning bells in my head and put off checking her hair. As a result full fledged lice. Total mom fail. I am the only one that will take care of it though, so I kind of have payback on myself? She has a totally good attitude about it. She also has almost exclusive use of the ipad as I comb her hair out twice a day. I could learn a few things from this if only I listened to myself.

What does all this have to do with mojovation? Not much, but they were how I stayed sane (minus the lice and football) during a summer that sucked me down a giant workhole. My own sharknado you might say. So while I may not have made it to bootcamp or headed out on that run that could have/would have relieved my stress, I did take little mini vacations online. So I wanted to share, because one thing I have learned, is that everyone is better off with a good laugh.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

3.5 pounds

3.5 pounds, it really isn't much in the scheme of things. It could be a swing of a bad eating weekend or some heavily salted food.

Right now that 3 lbs is making me worry.

153 lbs is a rounding error to 155.
155 is headed in the wrong direction.
I will grant it isn't 168, my peak weight.
but still.....

149.5 is progress.
149.5 means I am staying steady.
149.5 means working out and eating semi healthy is keeping me honest.
but it isn't my goal for 2013.....

So I was completely off exercise for a month while the wildness of a huge work project. That is over and I am back at bootcamp and running again. It is week 2, so I feel like I am officially back on the wagon. After stress month from crazytown, we went on vacation for a week. A glorious week of no thinking and decision making. I was able to run 3 times and ate anything I wanted to. I gave myself a week after we got back before I weighed myself. Be kind to yourself, right?

Even with that....those pesky 3.5 lbs had stuck around. Bummer.

It's not like it is a surprise, of course. Pizza, beer, funnel cake and ice cream will do that to a girl. So I dig in again. That is a no brainer. Feeling good about myself is the reward for for hard work.

But the wall is a little tall right now, the distance seems a little longer, the hill a little higher. I know I have the fight in me, but I am going to have to dig a little deeper.

3.5 pounds.

Monday, July 1, 2013

July - Half way there, or not

As you know I have set out several goals broken out by month and today is July 1.

One of my goals is to run 750 miles. I am getting there, but am not 50% there yet.

I am however at 43%. And I have decided to take that as a victory. Even 500 miles a year would have been a stretch goal for me a short time ago, so 650 or 700 or hopefully 750 will be great. Something to be proud of. As I am headed into a training cycle for two half marathons, my mileage will be headed back in the upward direction. Last month was 28.7 and this month was 40.1.

So while today was another tough day at work and sometimes things seem like they are never going to work out, I am convinced putting one foot in front of the other has to work at some point.

So this morning was another start, I had run Saturday and Sunday, but today was a bootcamp day. I set my alarm, got up and saw it wasn't raining. (there is no excuse any longer as it has rained so much we have the church on backup) So off I went. And it was good.

Did you start your month out right?

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Back to Business

Whew, it has been a crazy few weeks. I gave myself a break from blogging because we had so much going on, but really work has been kicking my behind. I am not out of the woods yet, but can see the light at the end of the tunnel. So I am been working hard to ramp back up on my exercise and *thinking* about getting my eating back on track.

Can I boast about my kids for a minute? They rock, but their activities are running me ragged! They do swim team in the morning and then head off to camp for the day. I usually have to pick them up by 4 pm. It makes for long days and short nights. Not exactly what I want in my quest to become a morning person!

I have been working to get back to running as the calendar is telling me I have a half marathon in 8 weeks! How did that happen? Not sure, but I am sure getting excited as it means my vacation time is getting closer. We will be heading to the beach for a week and then I will be taking the kids to my parents for a week before I run the Disneyland Half. Seriously getting that excited feeling in my tummy. However, it can't come too quickly as I have things to get done and summer to enjoy.

The washington area has been come storm central. We have hot days for sure, but the last two weeks seem to have storms forecast for every evening! What has been crazy is the humidity! I ran today and running in the rain would have been refreshing to the 95% humidity I swear we had. I managed to get 5 miles in, but was not feeling confident about my stamina at all due to the walking.

I have my first race in awhile on the 4th of July. Its a 5k at the local shopping area. I have run a few events there and it is a nice route with some hills, but not anything crazy. There is plenty of parking and the center plaza serves as a nice staging area. The race is giving away beach towels as the premium. Isn't that cute? Nice to have a change from the tshirt.

As today is the last day of the month, I spent some time today checking out some races in the future. Without having my race a month goal this year, I have kind of gotten out of the habit of checking out what is coming up. There were many races I couldn't fit into my schedule last year that I want to try out.

Any rate, don't want to bore you on my first day back, so hope you come back while I talk about running in the summer and lots of other fun stuff.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Back to the Beginning

So I think I mentioned I have been all over the place lately. Today was the last day of school. Yea, that means that all the papers that have been breeding in my kids desks and cubbies come home to roost. In all reality, this has been happening for about a week. My son's class has been in a quad trailer about the size of a small kitchen and I cannot imagine for the life of me how all this stuff x24 fit in that room! The good news is that nothing new can come home....from school anyways. Camp starts tomorrow and the paper fight starts all over again.

Due to my son's baseball schedule my daughter and I have been spending lots of time together. I need to do some thinking on how to make this time productive and fun. Otherwise the weeks are going to go by very slowly!

Proud of myself this week so far. Boot camp on Monday, 2.75 run/walk this evening.

Last night my daughter and I headed to a sorority meeting to help plan the calendar for next year. She has been to her fair share of meetings and is comfortable with everyone. Plus she loves the goodies we always have. There may have been some desserts. (Most were eaten by her!)

Today, I got home from work late, but since it was raining the boys weren't running off to baseball. My hubby took gym duty with my daughter and all of the sudden I had a free hour! The rain tapered off and I was off for a run. My legs were super tight. hrm, stretching might have been a good idea. I ran and walked around the neighborhood and covered close to 3 miles. Dinner was a turkey burger and some broccoli with sweet potato fries. And milk. It has been at least a week since I have had milk. yum.

We have a makeup bootcamp tomorrow, so if I can get myself to bed on time I will be headed to that direction. That way the daughter and I can maybe hit the pool tomorrow evening.

I really hope I can have a better day at work tomorrow and get back on an even keel to match my workout progress!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Summer has Arrived

well summer is here, but the spring activities and the weather didn't seem to get the message. Things continue to be very busy with work and home. Man these kids are hard to keep track of. Mine seem to be overloaded this time of year as the seasons overlap. We have managed to close the door on soccer, scouts x 2 (almost) and regular season baseball. School has 2 more days and swim team is in full swing.

In the meantime I have been trying to get back to a more consistent schedule. I said June would be my time to get back after a tiring and hectic May. Perhaps I have blocked out every other June from my mind? I have  tried to do a better job of getting up for bootcamp and running. I wanted to run more during the week, at least a few miles, but I have totally failed at that. Right now I am happy that I have gone out for about 5 miles the last 2 Sundays.

Today felt good. I got up at 9 and was going to head right out, but since it is Father's Day, I decided it would be much nicer to cook some chocolate scones up before I headed out. Kid 1 had a swim test for camp at 11 Dad was handling, so I headed out a a little after 10. Lots of cloud cover and a much lower humidity level then last week. I decided to see just where the run would take me and headed out on my favorite train. I ended up doing a similar loop as last week without the extra back and forth. I was proud of this run for two reasons. The first was I ran the first 25 minutes without stopping or feeling badly. I was SLOW, but my stamina has grown. The other was that I decided to take a path that I knew was hillier then my other options and I didn't shy away from it.

My weight has been all over the place and I am completely mystified. I eat horrible and it is down, I do my best to be better at eating and working out and it goes up. Completely driving me crazy.

Hope you are doing well!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Late for Bed

Sleep is the #1 thing to get in the way of my morning workouts. I am trying very hard to get in the morning habit because it suits the life with two active kids and a crazy schedule. 5:40 comes early for me though. (i.e. it is 10:45 PM now and I am having email conversations with 2 work people) I am dedicated to making June work for me. To do that I need to alter my evening schedule. Problem? My kids are staying up later then ever, squeezing what I am used to be able to accomplish at night into an increasingly shorter window. Plus the bad TV I would love to be able to enjoy.

June 4/Day 4 - made it to boot camp this morning and ran 2 miles this evening. So far I have run all 4 days this month. That may not sound like a lot (and it isn't - yesterday I ran 1 mile at a faster then usual pace to prove I could) but it has been hot here and any number of other excuses could have been at the ready. Even though I "already worked out" today, I still took the opportunity to run. I knew it would take me a little less then 30 minutes and I have bootcamp in the morning, so no one will care if I am sweaty tonight. This morning I ran a set of stadium stairs for the first time. Love going up, going down makes me all kids of awkward. What is up with that?

What are you doing to make this month different? Its not too late!

Monday, June 3, 2013

I am here

I haven't gone away, just struggling to get out of the hole my work has so kindly dug for me over the last 2 weeks or so. I took off about a week and a half in May to just focus on sleep. It wasn't a great decision, but it was what I needed at the moment. I didn't go crazy with food, tried to keep the stress eating in check. Memorial day weekend was pretty much a free for all, but in the end I came out weighing what I went in with. So all and all, not too bad.

June is going to be about me. (again) It is a crazy time of year with school ending, spring sports winding down and swim team ramping up FAST. So I am working hard to get back to the exercise habit. June will be about squeezing in what I can whenever I can. I have a bikini to feel sexy in (goal) and the pool is open damn it! (how did that happen btw?)

So I ran Saturday and Sunday to kick the month off right. Tonight I ran a fast mile on the mill, just to convince myself I can kick up the pace and then took a 2 mile or so walk after dinner. I am playing with joining a challenge to see if I can kick things up a notch and get through this plateau I have been at for months. I am not unhappy with my weight, but a goal of losing 6 pounds over the course of the year didn't seem that daunting until I got to the 6th month of the year with very little movement.

Anyways, just wanted to let you know I am here, working out and trying to figure out my next race.

Hope you are well.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Presents Keep Coming

As I said earlier Mother's Day was full of our normal. Kids and parents going every which way. We did have a good time going out to dinner. They told me what my presents were, a book for my race bibs and tickets to Cirque de Sole.

So fun! It holds like a bazillion bibs, so there is no danger of running out of space! Now if I just had time to fill it. Work is going to be cray cray for the next two weeks. I just have to put one foot in front of the other, a smile on my face and get through it. So don't get too worried if you don't hear from me.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Eating Right or Trying To

I have been slowly experimenting with introducing new foods to my diet. Recently I have been playing at making smoothies. I pulled out the blender we had been given for our wedding *cough* a few years ago.

I don't have any idea what I am doing, so I put in some ice, strawberries and a spoonful of yogurt. They have been turning out pretty well. I figure as long as it tastes good, its all good.

I have to admit every time I am a little scared my blender is going to give up the ghost. But the results sure are good.

Do you make smoothies? Any good recipes and what blender do you use?

Another thing we do? lots of fruit. My kids plow through it like you wouldn't believe and I am so happy to see fruit back, and clearly so are the kids. Now if only I could get them to throw away their trash!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Mother's Day Fun

We started Mothers day bright and early. The rain had cleared thankfully and we were ready to race. We headed out to Reston and after parking and walking quite a distance arrived just in time to slip into the Mothers Run This Town picture.
She doesn't look too sure here, but raced like a champ!
Courtesy of Suzanna O'shea

I then headed off to the bathrooms and got in place to race about 3 minutes before the start. Talk about perfect timing! I gave my husband and daughter a quick race and we were off. I don't typically spend too much time looking at race routes ahead of time. It doesn't seem to help me to know what is coming ahead, I just try to take the course as it unrolls ahead of me. I knew we were in for some hills, but hoped that for every uphill we would get a downhill. 

We hit hill number 1 right out of the gate. I felt like I was running really slowly, but talked myself into early racing stiffness and knew it would work itself out. 

Meanwhile the super cute racers were lining up. 

I was feeling good as we made our way around the loop that formed the course. I was keeping a pretty steady pace and was loving having so much room to run. The race had spaced us out nicely and I had fallen in with a few parent/child pairs and some other running. They didn't mark the mileage until Mile 2, which was ok with me. I knew were were past a mile and was feeling looser. Not fast, but I felt like I was keeping a nice easy pace. There was a water stop just past mile 2 and I decided to run through it. I started to think I had a chance to run the whole race. 

Meanwhile.....more cuteness. 

She decided to wear a tutu, because she like it when runners wear them. The 1 mile race wasn't timed, but my husband thinks she ran it in about 10 minutes. Way faster then Mom!

We were still doing some nice steady up and down hills. They were rolling hills. (haha) I just kept going, Slowing down when I needed to, but not stopping to a walk. We came over the last hill and I could see the turn back into the park. Yea! I was going to do it. 

I thought I might have PR'd, but the fact is I run slower then I walk. *sigh* 4 miles in 49:33. Not too shabby.  

In line for balloon animals with our support team
Happy Runners
All in all, it was a great local race. Potomac River Running does a nice race and the shirts were super cute. I was so happy to have my daughter out there running and experiencing a little bit of what mommy does. She isn't too sure about doing it again, but I will keep working on her. I know my son loves to run with me and he is a great coach. Maybe he can get me to run faster! 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Girls Night

Friday night my husband and son took off for a Boy Scout camping trip. As soon as they left at 6:30, my girl and I headed for the stores. our mission? To replace her sandals. Her current pair, while super cute and in good shape were just too small. We hit up famous footwear, Kohls and even Walmat (which I haven't been in for at least 5 years). We came up with nothing. Ugh the junk that is out there.

The best part of the night?

Hanging out and enjoying some frozen yogurt!

The rain clouds rolled in and the weather was pretty dicey. Turns out, that was the same at camp, but all ended up well, the girls were just considerably dryer.

Saturday was the most inefficient day I have had in a long time. We were up and out of the house in good time and headed to the mall. We hit up Macy's, Lord and Taylor, Children's Place and Stride Rite. Ugh, I hate shopping, have I mentioned that? My daughter hates to leave a store without something. Not a great combination. We finally hit upon success at Children's Place. Sandals we could agree on for $12?! I was so happy, I bought two!

Then despite the rain, we headed home and got ready for soccer. H loves to play, so she had a great time. It was hot and steamy, but didn't rain on us, thankfully. Back in the car to head out to Reston to pick up our bibs for the Mother's Day races. I was so excited for her. I am not sure she knew exactly what I had gotten her into, but she was game.

Whew, we still hit up the library for books and then finally headed home to relax before hubby came home for dinner. It was a good, but busy day.

After a good dinner, we laid out our race outfits. So cute!

I am so excited to tell you about our Sunday. Hope everyone had a great Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Looking Forward to Mothers Day

This weekend is going to be interesting. My son and husband leave Friday night for a Boy Scout campout, so the girl and I will be hanging together. Must think of some fun things for us to do, as that is a lot of hours! She has a soccer game and I am sure we will go to the library. Any good ideas - let me know! Saturday, we can go pick up our bibs!

Sunday we will both be running for Mother's Day. I am running a local 4 mile race and she is running the 1 mile companion race. Daddy is coming back so we can race, then he will head back out to pick up the campers. I am excited, some because it is a shorter race and because I know she is going to have such a great time. I am sad because the 1 miler starts 15 minutes after the 4 miler starts. No way this turtle will be seeing that show. Hopefully Daddy will take lots of pictures.

Today I slept in a little later as there is no bootcamp. I knew I needed to move today, but rain continued. Bummer, as I was planning to run during my daughter's gymnastics classes. She had two hours scheduled today. I ended up coming home and almost got sidetracked by a work call. I did get in the 45 minutes I promised myself and was rewarded with a sweaty 3.5 miles. Two more days to keep moving before I can take a rest day.

I also had 3 pieces of candy today. Not in the plan. Small steps.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Keeping at It

Nothing very earth shattering to report today.

Rain today, bagged on bootcamp. I had an early presentation to give to the Leadership Team and I didn't sleep well at all last night, so it may have been for the best.

After a successful presentation and a long day at work, I was/am tired. Like putting off working out tired. I helped the teacher pack up her room and them came home to help with homework. I had a short workout window, but decided I wanted a whole hour on the treadmill. It was a risky proposition, because after dinner  is well, after dinner.

Runkeeper sent me an email saying it tracks other activities besides running. Guess after 7 days, it gave up on me. :(

I did it. Took advantage of a boy scout meeting and got it done. I used to work out at night all the time, but it has gotten harder! I didn't give myself a ton of time after dinner and didn't feel so great when I was done.

Here are a few other fun picture from the weekend.

Smores in the chiminea

So beautiful

The first time the lavendar has bloomed! Was an impulse Costco purchase a few years ago.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Little Victories and Start From Where You Are

I decided last week that I needed to get back in the swing of things. May was my month to get it together and make that last push towards bikini season. The first of May came and went and I hadn't moved any closer to well, moving. Saturday night was a fun night of visiting with neighbors and lots of wine and even some s'mores. Fun, for sure, but not the direction I wanted to take my renewed healthy journey. I felt like I hadn't convinced myself of where I needed to go. All the weight I have lost came back and showed up on the scale this morning. Ugh. I know it isn't here for good and I just need to buckle down.

So Sunday, I focused on eating. I did a 20 minute you tube video to get my body moving. I did a timed plank to make sure I could still stay up for longer then a minute. :)

Monday I went to bootcamp and packed a sensible breakfast and lunch for work. (I left it on the counter when I went to work, but that is another story!)

So I count those two days as victories. It doesn't have to be the first of the month, or tomorrow. You can start in whatever day you are in, with the next decision you make.

Whenever you start, make it count.

Monday, May 6, 2013

April Goal Review

I feel like I fell off the wagon a little bit this past month. Bootcamp moved outside and it messed with my mojo a little bit. I did ok the first week, but then the weather turned a little wetter and work spun up to a frenzy. I wasn't going to bed on time and generally felt run down. Even though I knew that working out would make me feel better, I could hardly get myself motivated. This isn't an excuse at all, I recognize how difficult this is to keep consistency and I certainly fell into all the traps this month. That being said I did workout at least 1-2 times per week and finished a half marathon. Not too shabby. 

March Goals
1 minute plank - done
62.5 miles - done ( I ran the last day of the month to push me over by 1 mile)
our shower - done
Weekend trip - still not planned. I think the window has passed with plans already in place for the summer. I may see what early June looks like as the Girl Scout campout that I was hoping would materialize hasn't. 

April Goals
Nike Half - Done
62.5 miles - didn't get there this month. If I run shorter distances consistently throughout the week (which for me is 3 days a week) I should be able to get there. So this was disappointing with a 55.9 total for April. Just highlights my need to get out there. 
Siding/Gutter - Much like my other improvements, it has taken longer to meet with contractors, so I have two estimates done and my husband is on board. Progress, but not complete yet. 

This next month is going to be very busy at work and there is a ton of sporting/school stuff scheduled for the kids, so I need to figure out how to fit in time for me. And eat better. That slide must stop. Bikini season will be here before I know it! 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Racing for the Bling

The crowd moved towards the start line much faster then I expected considering the number of racers. I crossed the startline about 11 minutes after the start. The 15,000 women and 500 men headed towards the capital before we made a right turn to head towards the water.

We did an out and back across the Arlington Bridge and I was still with the 2:50 pacer. The group slowed considerably as we made our way onto the ramp down to through a tunnel and towards the Kennedy Center. There were great bands on the course and it was so fun to see the sights from up close.  I was starting to lose the pacer more often, and spent quite a bit of time wondering how much her arm hurt holding that sign. I would catch up at water stops and then start to fall further behind. I was ok with that, since I wasn't seeing any indication of the 3 hour pacer.

After the Kennedy Center we headed towards Haines point. We crossed over a bridge around 5.5 and there were groups of spectators there. I wondered if I would see the family, but it was too early based on what we had talked about. It should be close to mile 6.5 or 7. I was still feeling ok, having had some honey stinger chews around mile 5 and catching Nuun water or water at most of the water stations. The lines for the bathrooms were long, easily could have added 5 minutes to time, so I was happy I was feeling good and hoping it would continue.

We moved onto Haines point and it seemed a lot more deserted then I remembered it from the Navy 5 miler last year. There is a golf course on the penisula, so there is a lot of fenced off area. There were some cheer stations and a lot more signs posted from the race organizers along the path. They were appreciated as I didn't find my family and it was getting LONG. We entered in Mile 6 and headed out on Mile 10.

I finally found my family around after the 15k mark headed towards the mile 10 marker. I was so happy!

I am in orange in a sea of purple

so happy to see and be seen
I gave everyone a kiss and whispered to my husband "This is so hard." He said "I know, but keep going." So I did.

We went back through the tunnel and it smelled bad to me. I don't know why, but I wanted to get out of there more then anything. We were headed uphill to get back to Pennsylvania.

Nike official picture - isn't DC beautiful?!

The last 2 miles were the worst. We turned onto Pennsylvania and headed towards the capital again. In other races I have run downtown they add all sorts of jogs into the courses, so I was scared. I had no idea what was still ahead of me and I was starting to not feel good at all. I didn't want to stop this close to the finish and my stomach felt too sugar sweet to take in any more fuel. I was stuck just the way I was and had to take it one step at a time. The best part of this endless walk (yes I was walking) was the tourists who where taking pictures of the themselves in front of the race.

About a half mile from the end of the race one of my new mom buddies came up from behind me. She had been moving all weekend, but even so I was shocked to see her. Then we began to hear the 3 hour pacer behind us. I had kind of forgotten about the pacers since it had been so long since I had seen one. He was loud and working on motivating the purple runners in his group.

What I did was kick it into gear. No damn way was I going to go over three hours if I didn't need to. Of course I didn't have much left, so it was a short burst, but I keep moving forward. Any way I could to stay in front of him.

I did it! Finish was 2:59:21. That still seems a little off based on my start time and the time on the clock, but whatever I did it.

Love how you can see my orange shirt from anywhere

We were met at the finish by a great announcer and Howard University ROTC students. Not the Marines I was hoping for, but let's face it, cute is cute.

The necklace and fantastic finishers shirt was mine. I walked through the various stations and was met by my family a short distance into the crowd. I am so used to being at races by myself, I almost forgot to look for them. I turned off runkeeper and it read 13.9 miles. Gives you some idea of the bobbing and weaving that was had on the course.

We found my bagcheck - super easy drop off and pick up by the way and meandered towards the car. The kids wanted food, but we couldn't think of where to go, so we decided to get something when we got back to Fairfax.

We headed to Coyote Grill after picking up my car. Goodness was had all around.

Happy to have another race in the bag. I am going to be looking for some smaller races for awhile.

I need to leave you with this classic picture. I look like I am sleep walking through this race!!

Race Day - Nike Women's Marathon

Race day started EARLY. What is it about these folks and early races? It wasn't as early as Disney, but I was at the metro at 5 AM. I had arranged to meet several ladies from the Moms Run This Town facebook page so I wouldn't have to go into the city alone.

 I don't look ready to go...really. 

I was feeling good and it was so nice to have company. We took a tour of the area and took in the sights.

There is nothing better then a race in DC. The monuments are so beautiful and the routes downtown are great. We had a meeting place set up for our group picture. This group loves pictures. :)

Cover Photo
Aren't they beautiful, tough women? Ready to race
Everyone was in the corrals ahead of me, and we thought I could sneak in. I ended up deciding that I wanted to start in my assigned corral. It worked out for the best as their corral was apparently very crowded. I didn't have any trouble finding a place in my corral - maybe it pays to be slow sometimes.

There were lots of Team in Training runners there, all in their purple. There was a pacer with a sign right next to me for a 12:59 pace. I decided to try and keep up with her as well as I could. I was feeling good and ready to race. Fair warning, I didn't take any pictures because I wanted to focus on my race.

We had a moment of silence for Boston and then we were off.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Race Weekend - Expo

While the Nike Women's Marathon expo"tique" opened on Thursday, but I couldn't break away from work and kids sports until late Saturday afternoon. This was a mistake. Nothing could be done, but I feel like I missed out a little bit and I really should have gone with a friend/MRTT buddy.

I headed to Georgetown at 3pm on Saturday. It was a beautiful day and the world was out and about. I decided to drive down, but didn't make the decision to drive into Georgetown until when I got to Rosslyn. I should have parked there and then walked across the bridge. I pressed on however, and spent 30 minutes on M street regretting it. That was the worst of it. Or so I thought, until Io saw this.

Super crazy line. To be fair, the line moved along nicely, but was a bit shocking when you first tried to find the end. It was Disneyland long. Signs and all.

Once we entered the tent, there where tons of folks ready to assign bibs and give us our bags.

You then were supposed to head to the expo, which seemed to be a tent of 3-4 vendors. Nike, Bare Essentials, Luna and maybe 1 other. It was so crowded, it was hard to say. They had these 3 pin pads where you were supposed to enter the code you received at bib distribution and see if you won anything.

It was a fun idea. They had some nice walls and lots of places to take pictures. But none of the regular vendors that we in DC have become accustomed to. I can see where they wouldn't want direct competitors there, but there was no running supplies there at all. (that I saw)

I didn't make it to the Nike store where the runners name wall was located and apparently some race merchandise. I did manage to stop off at Hershey's to sneak a little pre-dinner ice cream before heading home. :) All in all, it was well run, if sparse and they were VERY lucky it wasn't raining. Folks were already not happy, and that would have charged up the negativity skyhigh.

I can't wait to tell you about the race! (Hint - the weather continued to grace us with pitch perfect temps!)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Nature is Deadly

So I am a little wacked out this week. I am looking forward to the race, the weather looks great, the girls from Moms Run This Town are excited and life is good.

Well except for one thing.

I feel like crap.

My allergies are here.

Nature is kicking my butt.

Not me, but I feel like this

I don't always have allergic reactions to spring, but here I am sniffling, aching head and generally lethargic. Not happy, that is for sure.

Things have been very busy at work and tonight was the first night since Sunday that we were all home for dinner at the same time.

I don't think I can go pick up my packet until Saturday afternoon, and that makes me nervous. No real reason, but I haven't been to Georgetown in years and it is not exactly the easiest place to get to.

News just broke that Shalane Flanagan is running the race. I don't know much about her, but she seems very down to earth. I won't be anywhere close to her, but still fun to know.

My goals? I would like to finish sub 3 hours. Having a good showing equal to Woodrow Wilson and much faster then Disney would be great for me. Did I mention the weather is supposed to be great? Can't wait!

I just need to hydrate, sleep, eat and hydrate.

See you on the flip side.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Month Flies By, But Some Moments You Must Grab

Today was uneventful.

That isn't true.

I got up and went to bootcamp. Circuit day. Ouch, enough said.

I am pretty sure I fell back to sleep when I got home.

Work - It was great. A project I have been working on for the last several months is finally coming together. We have a long way to go, but seeing parts of the application working was so gratifying and exciting!

Got some items off my to do list and then went to
 - pick up honey stinger chews for the race on Sunday
- get the car inspected (best part, other then passing? Being able to sit outside!)
- pedicure. Finally. I am embarrassed to tell you how much I needed it. Weather is supposed to be even warmer tomorrow, so this was a true emergency.

Came home to dinner in the oven and GREAT report cards for both kids.

Best part of the day. Hanging with my girl.

Boy was at scouts so she and I had lots of time before bedtime. I sometimes dread this, because it turns into a tug of war between what she wants to do and what I am too tired to do. We ended up just goofing off. So fun to hear the joy in her laugh and just giggle like girls. We tickled and read and wrestled and did hair....Who cares about anything else?

My cup is full. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Kids Schedules!

Spring sports have begun and I am struggling a little bit. My family eats dinner together about 3 times a week, which is a significant decrease from our usual 7 days. Not only that, but my ability to get vegetables into said family is greatly reduced. This is not a new problem, but seems especially acute considering I now have two kids with sports schedules. This is also my busy time at work, so less planning time to fight the family challenges.

Is this where I am supposed to insert some great tips?

1. I am trying to get sleep. With work deadlines, keeping my training up and someone or all of us being out every night, sleep is important. No reading books ( I stay up too late).
2. I walk or do something during practices. I am on the bleachers watching during games, but at practice, I have time to get moving. To be honest, this typically happens during soccer practice. One is better then None. :)
3. Plan ahead. Leftovers in the frig give the hungry athletes something to eat other then snack bar concessions. Larger meals on Sundays, mean the Monday dinner at 8:40 pm resembles something of a balanced meal.
4. Make picnics. This has mainly applied to baseball games and swim meets, but I pack a picnic dinner for myself and my daughter. This allows me to bring fruit salad, apple slices, and other good for us sides that keep the concession stand at bay.
5. Other treats need to wait. No pizza on Friday night just because, when that is the first night out of five that we are actually home to cook. Last Friday, I cooked up some chicken breasts for sandwiches, which we enjoyed on the porch while gathering with neighbors. Easy and healthy.
6. Do what it takes to keep your sanity, while making the best choices possible.

What have you done to keep the balance in life when it gets hectic?

Monday, April 22, 2013

Taper Time

I am running the Nike Women's Half in DC next weekend. It is the first running of this race. Nike runs a marathon in San Francisco each year. So far I have mixed feelings about this race. The registration was a mess. It was a lottery, so MANY months ago we entered into the lottery and gave our ccard. This is pretty standard stuff, so no big deal. When the day of announcements came the  facebook page started to light up. Some folks posting that they got emails, others were checking their credit card statements for charges. And so it went for HOURS. I am somewhat of a scatterbrain, so I had no idea what ccard I had used weeks before. I never did get an email, but eventually there was a listing posted to the website with all the names of the registered runners. I was on it, so had to assume I was good. Frankly, I had registered for this race on a whim, with no one else. I was happier with the Cherry Blossom experience and I didn't even get in that race!

Anyways I am running. I would say my training has been sporadic at best. I ran a few long runs as the weather warmed up. So more outside running, which I think prepares me better for races.  But as you know, I have had a few weird knee issues and bouts with non-motivated weeks.

I ran twice today. The first 3 miles were for the local VisionWalk. I took my kids to the walk with me. I was meeting a few other DGs and a few of us were planning to run the route. My running partners in crime weren't able to make it, but I knew my kids would fill in - if I could keep up with them.

Stretching is very important!
Ready for some fun
We were at a local outdoor shopping mall. One of the many town centers that have cropped up over the years in the area. The last race my son and I ran together was at this same place, so I was pretty sure we would be following the 5k route. We were off. Another DG mom offered to come with us and helped me keep close to the kids. We were off and ran the first mile in 11 minutes! I knew we wouldn't be able to keep up that pace, and indeed I was right. We slowed to closer to 15 minute miles for the last two. I was very proud of my daughter for sticking with it and finishing the run/walk. She was so cute crossing the finish line with everyone cheering. I very well could be in trouble with this one! My son loves it when I talk about how he is such a good coach. He was prompting us to "run to the corner" or to that light. So great! The last quarter mile or so I let him go ahead. 

We ended with some bounce house fun and yummy sandwiches. 

Once home I took care of lunch and then headed out to my local trail for 4 more miles. I felt like I was back in business, running 11:30-13:15 miles. Great place for me to be a week out from my race! 

Last week I exercised all 5 days during the week. I am not sure I will do the same this week, as I should be tapering, but I do want to get to Boot camp at least twice. 

Have a great week!