Friday, December 30, 2011

Summing Up 2011

It has been a very interesting year.  I describe it interesting because I can't call the last twelve months crap nor can I call them fabulous.  It was definitely one of a lot of ups and downs.  Hence..interesting.  

To start with the not so great stuff:
  • Chubby Hubby lost his job in March
  • I had to have a blood transfusion in June because of extreme anemia
  • Not being able to run the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon (again with the anemia).  Bummer because this is a race that is extremely hard to get into and I actually got drawn for the lottery.
  • My Achilles seizing up during Twin Cities Marathon forcing me to drop out at mile 15.5 ( can't forget the .5!)
  • Not getting the job I really really wanted.  I picked a horrible time to attempt a career change.
  • Weight gain, depression, and frustration.  The three went hand in hand.

Now I will stop being a Debbie Downer and go over the good that 2011 brought:
  • I went on three awesome mini vacations this year.  Phoenix in February, Vegas in July, and then Florida over Labor Day.  These getaways were awesome!
  • I completed the following races:
  1. January- Polar Dash 5k
  2. February - Lost Dutchman 10k
  3. March-Get Lucky 7k
  4. April- Get in Gear 5k
  5. May-Charities Challenge Memorial Day 5k
  6. July-Warrior Dash.....what a blast that was!
  7. August- Urban Wildland 5k.....with my son
  8. October- 59% of Twin Citites Marathon and the Monster Dash
  • I volunteered at the finish line of Grandma's Marathon where I saw many of my friends finish and it got to meet a couple bloggers.
  • Speaking of fellow bloggers, I got to meet and spend some time with Bobbi!  She blogs at Zero to 26.2 ( I can't figure out how to link on this thing).   She is awesome and we will be seeing each other again sometime this year.
  • We got a puppy....can I put that in both categories?
  • Chubby Hubby returned to the working world and he got to spend the Summer with the kids.
  • I started hot yoga and love it both for the workout as well as the stress relief 
So how did I do with my goals?
  • Have a lunch time date with the gym at least 8 times a month.  It shouldn't be hard with my motivated friends, Leah and Sarge.  The plan is to go every M, T, W, and the occasional Friday.  FAIL
  • Participate in an event every month.  So far I have committed to the following races:  SEMI SUCCESS, I didn't quite make it but I did I'd 8.5 races.
    •   January:  Polar Dash 5K
    •   February:  Lost Dutchman 10K
    •   March:  Get Lucky 7K
    •   April:  Get in Gear 5K or 10K
  • Continue with my Pilates class and not give it up this year like I did last year.  It is boring but a very necessary evil.  SEMI SUCCESS....I dumped Pilates and found hot yoga.
  • Make some more progress with Weight Watchers.  After all, it is free for me right now and it would be a shame not to use it. FAIL
  • Twin Cities Marathon.  It will be the 10 year anniversary of me becoming a marathoner.  I will do better than I did this year.  FAIL....at least I finished last year.
  • Do P90X with Chubby Hubby who is also whipping himself into shape.  I sort of promised him I would do it.  *sigh*  That program scares me.  FAIL...it is still in the package.
PERSONAL
  • Read 12 books.  A book a month?  I can do that.  Any recommendations?  SUCCESS or close to it
  • Take a lot more photos for fun and learn the basics of digital scrap booking.  FAIL
  • Reduce self-induced stress.  We are in the process of making some decisions that will be simplifying our family's life.  BIG FAIL
  • Catch up on Modern Family episodes.  Damn that show is FUNNY!   SUCCESS
There was absolutely a lot more great things that happened in 2011, most important my friends and family are healthy.  I will be thinking of what I want to accomplish in 2012 over the next few days.

Resolutions?   Do you make them?

I am blogging for the first time on my new iPad.   It is a fun gadget and I am learning more about it everyday.  I am so overwhelmed by the things that it can do so I have just stuck to the basics (errr....play Angry Birds).  What are your favorite apps? 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas Catch-up

I can't believe Christmas has come and gone already! We had a fabulous Christmas up North at my parent's house.  The weather was (and still is) UNBELIEVABLE!!!  We have no snow and it has been in the 40's and 50's.  I know our time is coming but I am enjoying every brown minute of it!  The only one that is not enjoying the warm temps is Chubby Hubby.  He built a very large hockey rink in our backyard and it is more like a swimming pool.  The kids are dying to skate on it but it is not possible.  Meanwhile, while my backyard is covered in standing water, I am running around town in a light fleece jacket.  Woo Hoo!

On December 23rd we kicked off the weekend by going to Bentleyville.  It is a tour of lights situated at Bayfront  Festival Park on Lake Superior in Duluth.  It is nothing short of amazing!  The light displays are incredible.  You stroll through these massive light displays while listening to some holiday music and along the way they have wood burning fires, hot chocolate, marshmallows to roast, and popcorn.  They even have a huge skating rink.  The best part about Bentleyville is that it is free!  It is a fun and festive place for everyone to enjoy.  I know we sure did.

Christmas Eve my mom had people over.  It was a small gathering but really fun.  There was a ton of food and a lot more laughs.  Christmas day we opened our presents and then we had even more food.  My brother and I teamed up to make brunch.  We did great!  By we, I of course mean that he did all the cooking and I stood there and watched him.  The rest of the day was spent in stretchy pants watching movies.  We ended the day with another huge meal.  Hence the reason I am still wearing stretchy pants.  Needless to say, we did go way overboard with the food.

A decent photo of the kids, even without threatening them

Next year's Christmas Card.  Ugly sweaters are always funny to me.

The little chewy piss monster.  (I do love her though!)

Bacon, cheese, and onion egg bake

Captain Crunch French Toast

The doggies....they look related don't they?

This is Steve the Head.
  He became part of our family this year.  He has a wicked sense of humor and make one hell of a tree topper.
My brother received him as a white elephant gift and we had some fun with him.

Hope everyone enjoyed the holidays!!!

My blog has been a bit "drafty" lately.  My posts have not been being published.  I have had a bit of writers blog but mostly I have not had anything to blog about.  I haven't had anything to blog about because I have fallen so far off the wagon and I didn't want to use this as a platform to piss and moan.  My motivation is back and I will be updating more as time goes on.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Wallie Exercises

I had the opportunity to review an adorable children's book titled "Wallie Exercises" by Steve Ettinger. It is about a lazy overweight dog who with the help of some friends gets fit and has fun doing it.  This book is written for children ages 4 and up and shares the message about the importance of physical fitness.

This book was a hit with Diva!  She asks me to read it often.  The illustrations are great and she loves the main character Wallie.  I know she gets the message because she told me "Mom, you are like Wallie....LAZY"!  Touche.  It is pretty sad when your 4 year old notices when you stop exercising.  This book has a great message for kids and is a great reminder for adults that fitness is important (especially because those dang kids are watching!).

This book also has some questions in the back about exercise, warm ups, and hydration....ask your kids to answer them and you will get some pretty funny answers like "You are not supposed to drink beer when you exercise, mom!".....sigh (I don't know where she would get that idea!)

You can read more about the book and the author, Steve Ettinger, at www.wallyexercises.com.  You can also find Wallie on Facebook and Twitter.

This book is available at Amazon.com as well as activespudstore.com.   Our copy of this book is being donated to Diva's preschool class.  They have a health and wellness theme throughout their school year and it will be great for her classroom.   It makes a perfect teacher gift too!!



Thank you to Steve Ettinger for the opportunity to review this book!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

I'm Not Drunk (Yet)

Happy Thanksgiving!  I wanted to take some time to reflect on all the things I am thankful for in life.  As I was thinking about how blessed I am, I started laughing because I reminded myself of Chubby Hubby's big brother.  When he would throw back a few cocktails, he would get all sappy and hug everyone while telling them how much he loved them.  My Thanksgiving list sounds a lot like him except I am sobe (for now).  Here is just a few things I am thankful for in no particular order:

  1. 1.9901-This is the mileage I ran today without stopping.  It has been WELL over a year since that has happened.  I may have run it at a grandma walks faster pace, but I still did it.
  2. 50 some degrees- Almost unheard of in these parts this time of the year.
  3. Chubby Hubby- Well, love him or hate him....he is mine and I am his (no one else will take us).  Plus he makes some pretty darn good tooth breaking popcorn.
  4. My Kids- They are my pride and joy (although most of the time I pretend I don't know them in public), they make me laugh and teach me new things all the time.  They especially make great toilet cleaners.
  5. My Family- To quote my dad, "Not bad for a bunch of assholes".   They are simply amazing....always there when you need them and not half bad to hang with either.
  6. My Friends- I am blessed to have so many awesome friends that would do anything at anytime for me.  I especially love how they appreciate my OCD tendencies by not posting any photo on the Internet without prior approval.
  7. My Friends that Live in Warmer Climates- I am thankful that I have an open invite(Kelli, if you are reading this, I am inviting myself to your house in February)
  8. My Chub-As much as I don't like the junk in my trunk.....it means that I have enough to eat.
  9. My House- It is too small, it is too old, and it is not in the location we want.  BUT.....it is warm in the winter, cool in the summer, and looks spectacular with Christmas lights (Father of the Bride, anyone??)
  10. My Car- aka the MILF Mobile (I didn't name it but it stuck), It is rusty but it is paid for and it may be one of the only mini vans that does not have any chalk people on the back window.
  11. Blood Donors- Thank you to all that donated blood.  I received 2 units (I said units he he) this past Summer and it literally gave me back my life.
  12. Biofreeze-does it need a reason?
  13. My Job-I may LOATHE my job but I am still thankful that I have one.  At least my boss leaves me alone, I get great benefits, and I am enjoying a 4 day weekend.  I can tolerate it until I find a new one.
  14.  My Dog-Well, not really.  She chews, she pees, and she bites.  I am thankful she is not bigger than a football.
  15. Hockey-A sport that all three of my kids love, one that makes them uber tired, and one that makes the winter go really fast!
  16. Blogging and Bloggers-I love that I have a place to dump my thoughts and I love reading about adventures of other real people.  Thanks for the entertainment and keeping me inspired!
 These are just a few of the many many things in my live that make me so blessed.

What are you thankful for this year?

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

What a crazy couple of weeks and I am just in awe that we are already going to be celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow!  I wanted to swing by and announce the winner of the copy of the book Hot (Sweaty) Mamas.

And the winner  is.......(pretend drumroll)

Abby!  
Please email me at fatrunnergirl@yahoo.com with your shipping address.  I hope you enjoy this book as much as I am enjoying it. (I am a slow reader)

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Hot (Sweaty) Mamas are Here on a Book Tour

photo credit:  Hot (Sweaty) Mamas
I am very excited because I have special guests visiting today, Kara Douglass Thom and Laurie Kocanda, co-authors of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom. They are stopping by on a virtual book tour and will be sharing some insight.  Not only are they the author's of the fabulous book, but they are practically my neighbors!   Both women currently live in the great state of Minnesota. 

I am currently reading this book and I am loving it!  It is  not the same old tips and tricks repackaged for busy moms.  This is a practical guide full of tell it like it is advice (without being condescending).  I am only about a third of the way through this book and I have already learned a thing or two.  What I find so refreshing about this read (or what I have read so far) is that it is not a postpartum weight loss book that helps you get back into your pre-baby jeans.  It is about fitness and making yourself a priority while being a good role model for your family.  I will also say that you don't need to have kids to enjoy it.

Today's guest post hits to my core....Missing workouts.  Enjoy!!

Missed Your Workout? Was it an Excuse or a Reason?
by Kara Douglass Thom

There are no good excuses to skip a workout. That’s right. None. However, there are plenty of good reasons that might interfere with exercise. Excuses take on many forms, but 99.8 percent of them are a variation of “I don't have time,” or “I’m too tired.” We’ve all been there.

If you’ve ever missed a workout but knew deep down you could have made it happen, an excuse was in play. It’s like telling yourself a little white lie. Another sign: when explaining your decision, you sound like you’re trying to convince yourself—not just other people—that you did the right thing by skipping. As if repeating the story might make it true.

As for good reasons to miss a workout, those are always clear and definitive; they are often out of your control and don’t require any convincing on your part. You have a fever; your child vomited in the back seat on the way to the gym; your boss asked you to stay late to finish a project. You might have access to a Plan B workout option, but if you don’t, no need to feel guilt. This is especially important for those who tend to err on the side of exercising at all costs; who don't always recognize a good reason to skip a workout when they should.

And just as you would if you missed a workout because of an excuse, a reason not to exercise one day shouldn’t be the end of all future workouts. Tomorrow’s a new day. Will you choose to work out, or not?

Sometimes we need to make trade-offs in life. In the book, Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom (Andrews McMeel 2011), we share what we call a “Sweaty Decision Tree” that can guide readers to answer that question, “Should I work out or not?” Variables include whether or not the workout will leave you more or less stressed, what your workout plans were the day before, and if you think a workout is possible the following day.

What may be a good reason one day might be an excuse on another. An excuse for some people might be a good reason for someone else. In order to know the difference on this case-by-case basis you have to be in tune with your body and mind so you can be true to your needs and goals. And if you do miss a workout—whether because of an excuse or a reason—know that it doesn’t have to end your commitment to fitness.

This guest post comes from Kara Douglass Thom, a triathlete, freelance writer and mother of four. She and Laurie Kocanda are the co-authors of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom.

Now for the fun stuff....I have a copy of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom for a lucky reader.  Leave me  a comment about how you prioritize your day to fit in your workout or how you get a workout in even when you have a good excuse (errr reason) to skip it.  I will randomly draw from the comments later this week.  Want it now???  The book is available at major bookstores and on Amazon.com.  Want to keep up with the latest news, they are on Facebook and Twitter.  Tomorrow the tour stop is stopping by Step it Up with Steph.


I would like to thank these Hot (Sweaty) Mamas for making my blog a stop on their virtual book tour and making this give-a-way possible.


Disclaimer:  The book was given to me to review however all opinions are my own.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Riding the Pole

Last night I did something that I promised my parents I would never do.....I rode the pole. Yes, and I do mean a stripper pole.

How did I get into this situation?  I attended my friend's super fabulous birthday party and she had a mystery destination for us.  We met at her house and a big ol' van came haul 14 wild and half in the bag crazy broads us to a place called the Wolves Den Fitness.  As we pulled up, the van of squealing women saw the several stations of port-a-poles through the windows.  I should mention that these windows lacked any sort of privacy....what we were about to do was going to be available for the world to see.

If my thoughts were audible you would have heard holyshitholyshitsholyshitholyshitholyshit....All I could think about was the video of the chick bringing down the stripper pole on You Tube.  Ughhh....that is all I would need. FAT CHICK DOWN!

We met our instructor and it was clear she had a lot of experience in the business if you catch my drift.  It didn't take long for all of us to find our inner strippers and have fun with the poles.  I think some of the women in our party have other jobs.....just sayin'.  One mother of 4 (who is 45 BTW) grabbed the pole and did an inverted slide.  WTF????  She is my HERO!



Me, my moves were more basic.  Climbing up on the platform was challenging enough.  I did manage to swing around the pole but the first time I did it there was an incident.  My legs got tangled at the bottom and twisted.  It took another person to untangle me.  I got a charlie horse and I lost a shoe....it is dangerous.  But after that, I learned a dismount(involving a cat crawl).  I was trying to look sexy whilst practicing my pole dancing and I was told that I A) Looked like I was in pain, B) that I looked fierce, C) that I looked constipated.   *sigh*  I tried.  This is my hot move of the night:
I did name myself Fantasia Glitzthighs (I found my stripper name here)
Maybe someday, I will be able to do the inverted slide like our instructor (whom I call Tits Mcgee)....

PPR (Post Pole Reflections)
  • The art of the pole dance is really hard
  • pole dancing is great for the core
  • I am sore in places that I didn't know could be sore
  • I have never laughed so hard in my life
  • Suburban mothers can shock you 
  • My time on the pole may have been the best remedy for the funk that I have been in.
  • I will keep my day job.
Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend!  Stay tuned tomorrow for a guest post by  Hot Sweaty Mamas.....and a giveaway too!

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Week of Couch Fusion

I can't believe Halloween has come and gone.  This year may have been one of the more lame ones I have lived through because I was sick with some flu like bug.  That would at least explain my extreme crabbiness and my sheer hatred for the Monster Dash.  I spent most of the weekend fused to the couch watching really trashy TV.  I did go to work the rest of the week but had very little energy to do anything but watch TV.  Since I do not have anything to post about running or weight loss, I have a recap of how I lost a few brain cells:

Bridezillas
I have never seen so many trashy foul mouthed bitches in my life.  The whole premise of the show is some girl is getting married and it is her day so she gets to be a total bitch to anyone and everyone.  It is Jerry Springer crossed with TLC's A Wedding Story

I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant
Three words..... What the F#*^;!!!!  Really?  REALLY?  I watched the dramatization of some chick who thought she was constipated grunt and groan on the toilet and low and behold...she literally shit a kid out in the toilet.  Sorry, I just do not buy this crap......especially when they delivered full term babies.  But the show is like a train wreck and I could not stop watching.

Top Secret Recipe
Some dude tries cloning famous foods such as KFC and Cinnabon.  He gets clues to see if he can recreate the junk food.  He lost me when he started stalking people for recipes and did some dumpster diving to see if he could get more information from restaurant's garbage.  To me that seems like it is crossing the line into freakdom.  Now if he could recreate a Reese's candy bar, maybe, but he lost me at KFC.  It was kind of creepy.

The Today Show
Anyone else just wanna pop Ann Curry in the mouth for no real reason? (see I told you I was in a mood).

The one the wins the award:
Sharktopus.  It is a movie about a shark/octopus hybrid that was created by the military. Something goes haywire in this thing and it terrorizes people.  It was beyond bad but it was something that I could not stop watching.  If you are wondering whatever happened to Eric Roberts, you can find him here.  This movie gets the Chubby Chick two thumbs up award (see I told you I was on the couch too long).

In my week of laziness, I did manage to snap a few photos of my monsters on Halloween.....




Hope everyone had a great Halloween.   I back to normal (relatively speaking) and back on track.  Have  a great weekend everyone!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Monster Dash and Airing my Grievances

I signed up for the Team Ortho Monster Dash 5K which was on Saturday.  I was a bit chapped before the race started because I discovered that the race was a not a race but  a "fun run".  I am all for fun runs but not when the entry fee is $41.49.  Team Ortho has a series of races and they are always well organized, fun, and timed.  It was my own problem that I misunderstood the type of race although it was deceiving....It was advertised as "Monster Dash 5K and 5K-9 Fun Run".  To me, I thought that meant the 5K would be chipped like every other race they have put on and the 5K-9 run was a fun run.  I was wrong.  Forty freakin' one dollars to enter this crap.

THEN...I looked at my bib.  It said I was 38 years old!  The nerve!  I am not 38 years old. Yet.  I still have 2 months thankyouverymuch.  (It probably was a typo caused by me, but it adds to my race annoyance and I will blame them, ha!)

My mood continued to take a nose dive along the course when people hit me with their strollers, I  tripped over dogs, and I got poked in the eye with fairy wings.  I especially enjoyed getting stuck behind a group of moms that ran 3 across with their strollers.  They walked oblivious to people trying to get around them on the narrow street.  People let their dogs run on a long leash in tight crowds of people causing tripping and tangling.  Then these same people would be horrified when their pooches would get stepped on from people running.  And seriously, there is none of this "on your left" business when there are shoulder to shoulder people and you are trying to pass with a double jogging stroller.  What set me off was some chick was running with a stroller, and hit me with it while she was trying to maneuver through a congested part of the course....her passenger was a dog.  That is when I decided was done.  Evidently the strollers and dog lovers didn't read the memo about starting at the back of the back. I started walking and actually picked up a call on my cell phone during the race (can't beat 'em, join 'em....at least I looked before I stopped and moved all the way over).  I finished my conversation and ran it in.  I finished in about 40 minutes.

I was in such a pissy mood that I found no humor in the very creative costumes and ignored the fact that it was a PERFECT day weather wise.  I am not a running snob by any stretch of the imagination and I love that there are tons of people that are running, but the lack of running etiquette drives me mad!  To me running etiquette is as simple as common sense and a little respect for others.  After this experience, I will not be so eager to sign up for races because lately they are not as fun as they used to be....especially with how spendy the race fees are getting.

What are you race pet peeves???

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Back to Blogging....My ADD Catchall Post

I know I have been very neglectful with blog lately and even more neglectful about reading them. It has been partially because of the life craziness factor but mostly it is because of some EXTREME attention deficit issues I am having. Every time I sit down to write something, I can't focus long enough to get my thoughts out of my head.


I know you must be dying to hear what I have been up to (sarcasm).  To understand my mindset, I will write like I have been thinking....with the ADD. 

Chubby Hubby finally got a job!
Wait....I can't go there until I have told you about....
Last week at this time...
Chubby Hubby's unemployment was going to send me to the nut house. I am a bit of a control freak and we don't do things the same. We just hit the 7 month mark and I was about to go insane.
But then, I realized that I haven't filled discussed why I have been MIA in the blogosphere...
Football.  And...finally we are done with football which consumed our whole Fall. 
But now we have hockey season and all 3 kids are playing.  Bring it on!
But really, that is kind of boring and isn't every one's life crazy busy? So I should write about....
Volunteer obligations that I took on out of guilt and because someone said it was an "easy job". (FYI the school directory is NOT an easy job)
blah, blah, blah....been there, done that post before....So then I need to comment on.....
Seeing my family photos and getting a dose of reality about my girth
Which led to me to want to tell you about....
Going the the gym 3 times this week (applause please!)
Or maybe I should back up and mention that....
I have a new running goal, the Couch to 10K Program (Thank you Google and Danny Haralson)
Oh look I have a book review to share (Wallie Exercises)
Oh my God, that book review is really delinquent.  I must get that posted this week....stay tuned....until then,
I must share my PSA which is...
Peanut butter toast is not a great take-a-long breakfast and I certainly do not recommend eating it while driving. Why? Peanut butter melts on warm toast. Melted peanut butter drips. The drips of peanut butter on toast that you are eating on the go, usually ends up all over your clothes.....the clothes you wear work.
Or maybe I will scratch all of that nonsense above and...
 let you know that I am finally settled down to resume blogging.  I hope I didn't make your brain hurt too much with my crazy train of wild thoughts.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

BTB Sunglasses Review

REVIEW:  Be The Ball Sunglasses


I recently received a pair of Be The Ball Sport Optics. Per their website, btbsunglasses.com, the glasses are the "best $100 sunglasses you can buy for under $50" and marketed for all types of activities. Prior to my review I chose the 500 series to test and chose this model because of the design and because fit "medium to large faces".  When I received them the glasses were a little too big for me.  So I enlisted a friend and fellow Blogger, Rich, to do the review.  If get a chance, check out his blog Diver Stuck in Minnesota.  He is blogging about his journey to India and his trip to dive in the Maldives.




He tested the sunglasses playing a full hour of touch football.  Here is an excerpt of his review.  To read the entire review....click HERE.

Pros - The first thing I want in sport sunglasses would be a lightweight frame. These sunglasses are very light. The frame is primarily plastic but with some rubber accents. Which leads me to the second thing I liked about these: comfort. The rubber is in key pressure points: the two sections that bridge your nose and the two points that hold the glasses on your head. Both sections felt great the entire game and barely left a mark after wearing them for closer to 2.5 hours. Final comment I'd make is that they stayed in place all game. No issues with having to readjust at all during active gameplay. That said, I DID readjust which brings me to the...




Cons - The major comment I have against these glasses were the fact that they fogged up several times forcing me to readjust. While they fit terrific, they didn't allow for airflow to keep them from getting fogged up. A few times after several runs this happened. I'd be concerned when running that it would happen as well. My other con was very intermittent. During some views into the sun, I got streaks and unnatural bright spots from the lenses.






Verdict - These are good sports sunglasses. They fit great, were light and didn't leave marks, and stayed put though a full game. The cons weren't enough to detract from my experience. A quick readjustment took care of the fogging issue and the intermittent streaking was not enough to change your overall sight and view. Bottom line, if you are looking for some good sports sunglasses, give Be The Ball Sport Optics a look.


Thank you to Be the Ball Sport Optics for a chance to review your product and Thank you to Rich for stepping in to test them out.

Monday, October 17, 2011

ZeDonks and Camels, Oh My!

Another October weekend is gone and I have to say it was a great one. Diva went to stay with my parents for the weekend so it was just 4 of us.

Friday
I made a trip to REI to buy myself some respectable shoes since I seem to be having some chronic issues with my feet and ankles.  I bought my first pair of Dansko clogs.  I got them in basic boring black.  They are not as ugly as I once thought they were but they are not as cute as the heels I like to wear.  They are wicked comfortable and now I have the itch to get them in brown to complete my waredrobe.  On a side note, I got a pretty good deal on them because I used the REI member 20% coupon.

Saturday
Chubby Hubby and I spend most of the day watching the boys play football.  One had a game (and he made a sweeeeeeet touchdown!!) and one had practice.  After the boys were done playing we decided to head out to Severs Corn Maze and spend the rest of the afternoon there.   They claim to have America's largest corn maze and every year they have an elaborate design (I alway wonder how the heck they do it).  Along with the maze, we enjoyed the corn pit (or at least the boys did), shooting corn out of a cannon, and mini donuts.  Then we looked at some exotic animals (not dancers).  The one that left us scratching our head was the ZeDonk.  I shit you not, a ZeDonk is a zebra/donkey hybird.  The photo below is not the best, but that donkey really does have zebra legs.  CRAZY!  Poor guy, no wonder he didn't want to turn around.
I rode a camel while I was there.  My friend made me do it because she wanted the experience and was not going to do it alone. We stood in line and waited for our turn with a bunch of 6 year olds.  You should have seen the looks we got from other adults.  I do not think I have laughed that hard in a long time, especially after seeing the look on the camel's face when we hopped on its back.  It was absolutely an experience I will never forget.  The guy leading the camel wore a sweatshirt with the company logo:  Camel Towing.  I loved it!
Sunday:
More football and Diva came home.  We all had a great weekend but it stinks that Monday came around so soon.  I didn't run this weekend because I wanted to give my foot/Achillies a little bit more rest before I start up again.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wednesday's Quick Mind Dump

  1. I went for a little run last night and everything felt pretty good.  There was a still a little tightness in the foot and Achillies but I am going to the Chiropractor again today for another treatment.
  2. I am pretty sure my new Garmin is going to make me a better runner.  I am kind of a data nerd so seeing my pace and distance pushes me a bit.  (I love how a new Gadget gives me motivation to get out there)
  3. I did hot yoga last night and accidentally went to the 80 minute class.  This class is for the more advanced yogi which is soooooo not me.  I was able to hold my own in the class even though I could not wrap my leg behind my head while balancing on one arm (okay, nobody in class did that but there were some crazy poses).
  4. I made a week's worth of dinners on Sunday.  Yay me for being proactive quite Martha Stewart-ish!  Actually I made them because my children embarrassed me while I was getting them a quick fast lunch.  I asked if they wanted to stop and Rotten Ronnies (our term of endearment for McDonald's) and they said no because we went there two other times that week.  Ooops.  I got a couple of judgemental glares from some perfect parents.  Since I was afraid one of these parents was about to call CPS, I decided to plan ahead and actually make something we could at home.  Success.  Tonight we are having stuffed shells.
  5. I have kind of a busy night tonight but I am going to go to the gym and run on the treadmill if it kills me. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Final Thoughts on 2012 Twin Cities Marathon

It has been just a little over a week since the marathon and life is getting back to normal.  My Achilles is feeling much better.  I think between the chiropractor and the 90 minute massage most of the kinks were worked out.  I still have a little bit of soreness that I am working out by stretching, resting, and ice.  I think I will be just fine.
It occurred to me during this past week that as much as I love the Twin Cities Marathon, I don't know if I will run it again.  The training cycle is just too crazy for me.  Summer is just too unpredictable for scheduling and I do not do well with training in the heat.  I have run it twice, dropped out once, and did not even make it to the starting line a couple of times.  My attempts at this race have been half-assed, I have never been fully trained for it.  Truth of the matter is, I love my BBQ eating and beer drinking Summer too much to devote to the training. 

This year also brought on some additional challenges for training such as extreme anemia, juggling schedules of three very active kids, looking to transition into a new career, and dealing with Chubby Hubby's new status of being unemployed.  Needless to say, this impacted my running huge this Summer.  There were too many uncertainties that were stressing me out and I am not one that can run to get sane.  Ultimately the ankle/Achilles thing took me out of the race but with all of the other things behind it, my heart was not in it.

I don't really have much going forward.  I will be running the Monster Dash on October 29th.  It is a 5K and I my only goal is to run the entire thing.  From that point, I will play it by ear with different races.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The 59% Twin Cities Marathon Report

I have been trying to figure out how to handle this race report since Sunday.  Afterall, I didn't finish so what more can there be? Actually, a lot!

 I will first state that I am fine.  I am seeing my chiropractor for treatment on my Achilies and ankle.  Although it has not been ruled out completely, they are pretty confident that my injury is not a stress fracture.  Urgent Care put me in a splint and thought it was sprained.  Most likely it is all Achilies related because it was beyond tight.  Today I am walking normal with only a little soreness.  The Chiropractor did some muscle work and I went in for a deep tissue massage.  It seems to be working.  I am going to baby this for a bit and start running when I get the all clear.

I always have been a fashionista

Now that is out of the way I can get to the good stuff:
  • I made it more than half way before I had to drop out.  My thoughts are 59% is better than not even trying.
  • I ran in my brand new shoes.  First time I have ever run in them and they ROCKED.  I know the rules and I know the consequences, but I chose to challenge it anyway.
  • The weather was AMAZING!  It was perfect day for racing.
  • The course.  I have said it many times, but Twin Cities Marathon has to be one of the most beautiful courses out there.  The Fall colors are stunning.
  • I ran with my friend and it was nice to have company and brag about the beautiful, cool place I call home.
  • I got to spend time with my friend that lives out of town.   We ran as a Viking and Packer fan.  I was a little shocked at how many Packer fans there are on this side of the boarder.  Hmmmmfp.  I didn't like being heckled!!
  • My new Yurbuds.  They were amazing and did not hurt my ears nor did they fall out.  The did not even need to be adjusted.  Simply amazing.
  • My new Garmin.  Wow, I can't believe I ran without one.  It was fun to monitor my pace.  I certainly caters to my neurotic side.  Speaking neurotic....I wore both Garmins.  I had one monitoring my pace and one monitoring my intervals.  Yes, I am an uber nerd.
  • My pace was way better than I could dream of even doing a run/walk interval....I was on track to come in around my personal best, a far cry from the sag wagon.
  • The spectators were fantastic!!!  Lots of cheering, music, and high fives.  Again, this marathon should be on your race bucket list!
In the big scheme of things, I am happy with my performance.  I ran well, I felt well, but I just knew it was not going to be a good thing for me to finish.  I felt better running on Sunday than I have for over a year.  That is success in my book and there are many more races to chose from.

One of the best parts of the weekend was the "internet dating" as my friend calls it, I call it a Blogger meet up.  I got to meet Bobbi!  She ran the race as well and did awesome! 
She is one of the nicest people I have met and very down to earth.  She braved the Casa de Chubby and got harrassed by my children and didn't bat an eye.

I have a feeling I will be seeing Ms. Bobbi again in June.

For a DNF, this race was still fun.  I do hope that this is my ONE AND ONLY DNF.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Blogging From Urgent Care

Well I can add something to my list of firsts.......a DNF.  I am sure that you the reader are not shocked by this outcome, but I am a little surprised.  I am surprised because I felt AMAZING!   My legs were strong and my cardio was great.  I was even on track to PR or come pretty damned close.

So what happened?

Around mile 13 my ankle started to stiffen up and by mile 14 I had bone crushing pain.  I hobbled into the EMT tent at mile 15.5 and the doctor and Chubby Hubby told me that I needed to be done.   For a moment I thought about saying screw it and hobble my way toward the finish.   Weighing the consequences, I decided to play it smart and graciously drop out of the race.

Yes I am disappointed but I am not crushed.   I am
actually feeling worse that i came into urgent care right from the race.   Pewwwww!  (I am decorated as a MN viking and my doctor informed me she was a Packer fan......Yikes!)

I have a whole bunch of stories from the weekend that I will share in an offical race report.  Right now i am waiting to get an xray.  Hmmmmpf.....this is really ruining my post race feast!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Three Things Thursday

1. Holy Sh*t! The marathon is on Sunday!!
2. Holy Sh*t! The marathon is on Sunday!!
3. Holy Sh*t! The marathon is on Sunday!!

That about sums up my 3 Things Thursday.

1. The marathon is of course on my mind. No, I know I am nowhere near ready to cover 26.2 miles but I am determined to do it. People who know me do not have any doubt that I will cross the finish line regardless of my current condition. I wish I had that much confidence right now. Others that may not know quite as well are suggesting that I drop out. In my mind I am telling them to "suck it". See....I am insane! I am going to do and do it to the best of my ability.

2. I ordered a cake for after the marathon on Sunday. It is a white cake, with vanilla bean Bavarian cream filling, and chocolate butter cream frosting. It may have been a total fat chick thing to be more concerned about a cake than the race itself but it is that good. The only thing that would make this cake taste better is if I am wearing my finisher medal while eating it.

3. I may have mentioned this before but this is my 10 year anniversary of running my first marathon. My friend from Phoenix ran it with me 10 years ago (she was the one who dared me to do it!) and she flew in last night so we could run it together again.    I am so excited because marathon mania has started.  Good race or bad, it will still be fun!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up-

Remember me?  I know it has been too long since my last blog post when my father asks me why I haven't updated my blog.  Huh, who knew he cared?  I thought I had better make him happy and finally write something.

Since the school year started, I have been doing nothing but running and I do not mean the type of running that entails training for a marathon.  I have had a lot to blog about but these children require a chauffeur to all of their various activities.  When I am not at work, I am either at the football field,the hockey rink, or helping kids with homework.  I know this is normal life for most parents but damn, I feel like I need an award or better yet, a crown for maintaining this balancing act.

I am trying not to hyperventilate but Twin Cities Marathon is SUNDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Since history has a way of repeating itself, I am not even close to being ready.   This time next week I struggling to climb steps and vowing that I will never ever EVER do another marathon (this time I mean it!).  I know I have completely lost my mind because I feel like I will see the finish line even though I cannot run a mile without stopping. 
Because I have gone mad, I have done a few things that I swear will help me get through this race.
1.  I bought brand new shoes.
2.  I bought a Garmin
3.  I got a marathon pedicure

The Shoes
About a week ago I did a 14 mile route and decided that I LOATHE my shoes.  I bought them back in the Spring but they still have some good mileage left in them because I have alternated with other shoes and really haven't run many miles in them.  They were not horrible enough to return but they never rocked my world.  At about mile 12 on last week's run, I decided I needed new shoes ASAP.  Right after my run, I took the shoes into the store and told the sales people my problems.  They analyzed my wear patterns and watched me run and it was determined that the type of shoe I have is not for me.  I tried on a bunch of new shoes and fell in love with an Asics model.  This is a problem because I am a loyal Saucony girl.  I asked the store owner if he thought I was nuts for buying new shoes/new brand a week before a marathon and he said "no".  On top of that, the shoes were pink and in a size smaller than I normally wear (vanity sizing for shoes! Woot!).  I ended up buying them based on that criteria.

After all that, the jury is still out on the new shoes and I will probably end up wearing my old shoes for the race.

See?  I told you I have lost my mind!

The Garmin
I have developed a run/walk interval that I am comfortable doing and I plan on doing it for the race.  I was scarred by last years experience when I was getting chased down by the sag wagon so I wanted a way to keep my pace in check (even though the bus my still be nipping at my heels).  I have to at least maintain a 13:44/ mile to be a legal finisher.  I wanted a way to monitor my pace throughout the race and started thinking about upgrading my Garmin.  I took a poll on facebook and the results were overwhelming that I needed this gadget.  I bought one and it is coming this week.  I call it my little security blanket.


The Toes
Last year's my friend had a crazy pedicure done to commemorate the event.  This year, I decided to do something funky as well.  My vision was to honor my alma mater, the University of Minnesota, by doing my toes in a maroon and gold theme.  I asked the lady if she could free hand draw a maple leaf and she said okay.  It wasn't quite a maple leaf.....



Hmmmmm.....I am not sure what this is but this design definitely has some school spirit mixed with some Vegas.  I have rhinestones on my big toenail!  I am counting on this bling as being a good luck charm!  After all, there are exactly 10 rhinestones which could signify my 10 year anniversary of my first marathon.  On a side note, no matter what you do to toes (especially mine) they are UGLY!

I am kind of feeling a bit Charlie Sheen right now with all of the marathon insanity.  WINNING!  Anyway, hopefully I will be back to more "normal" (using the term normal loosely) next Monday.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Back to School!


THE CHILDREN ARE BACK IN SCHOOL!!!!!!!

Do I hear angels singing?  Woooo Hooo!

I can already tell the year will be off to a raging start.  The middle child was practicing his spelling.  If you see ASS and MORON in the photo below, your eyes are not playing tricks on you.  My 7 year old is not only a fabulous artist, but he knows how to spell cuss words.  Hmmmmm.....all I can say is that this occurred on Dad's watch and the proud papa sent this photo to me.  I just pray he doesn't make an "ass" out of himself in front of his first grade teacher.


I just came back from Florida on Sunday night.  Every Labor Day weekend, three awesome ladies and myself head to Singer Island for a little RnR.
I didn't have a single care in the world.  The days went something like this:
  • Wake up when I wanted...(usually 7AM)
  • Drink coffee whilst listening to the crashing waves of the ocean and watch the sunrise
  • Walk the beach for a good hour.....that workout is not for  the faint of heart!!!
  • Roll around in the sand because my calves locked up and cramped during beach walk.
  • Limp my way back down the beach.
  • Breathe a sigh of relief that I made it home without the help of the Coast Guard. (yes, I did this to myself more than once.)
  • Make a batch of beergaritas for the pool.
  • Lay by the pool and read while soaking in the very harmful UV rays
  • Leave pool around 5PM for "happy hour"
  • Happy Hour involved some very fun and almost violent games of Sorry (that game brings out the BEYOTCH in people)
  • Dinner of some sort (Triscuits and wine can count as dinner, right?)
  • Bed....usually at 8:30 (party animals!)
Ahhhh, if only I was that relaxed now.  The school year crazy schedule has begun!!!!!

Believe it or not, I still have been training.  Albeit, it has been about a week since I have focused on my actual plan.  Right before I left, I was able to knock out 14 agonizing, long slow miles.  I was able to do them just under the time cut off for the marathon.  Yay me.  This week, I am going to make my return to Hot Yoga and get an ass whoopin' from the trainer.  It has only been a week out of my routine, but it feels like a year!


Saturday, September 3, 2011

Vacation!



I am enjoying the sounds of the ocean crashing into the shore, soaking up some harmful UV rays while ready trashy books, and having for wine dinner.   AHHHHHH....I am in Heaven!!

Be back soon!



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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Lifestyles of the Crazed and Overscheduled

My poor blog has been neglected for the past few weeks.  I have been M.I.A. from the blogosphere because of..............

BIRTHDAYS
We just celebrated what we call "birthday mania" in our house.  All three of my children have August birthdays and they are all within 12 days of each other. (yeah yeah....I know you are thinking it must be cold in November...haha).  We had 3 kid parties this year and one family one (remind me not to do that again).  I am so sick of birthday cake that I could puke.  This year I purposely ordered kid cakes that I would not touch.  That theory went out the the window....there is not a cake that I would not touch as I love them all. 
Happy 9th, 7th, and 4th Birthday!!!!

ACTIVITIES
Can you guess which dancer is mine?
Hint:  She has a tail.
I can officially add Chauffeur to my job description as I have been shuffling kids to their respective summer activities. Diva had dance and the boys had a summer hockey.  Football started on Monday.
Add Chubby Hubby's softball and my marathon training and our house is a circus because we have activities every night.  School is starting in a few weeks so at least there will be a better routine.

CONSTRUCTION
As of we aren't crazy enough, we decided to rip apart the front walkway and steps and replace it with new concrete. (by we, I of course mean Chubby Hubby, my dad, more family and friends).   What a job!  I have to say for a bunch of amateurs that did some nice work and we saved THOUSANDS of dollars not hiring the work out.
Before
After
THE DAMNED DOG
She is cute, but she is a pill.  She loves to chew on my shoes, steals socks, and digs big big holes.  She is still having issues with house training.  I know it is typical puppy stuff but I forgot how much work they are.  Any suggestions on a stubborn dog that is taking her sweet time potty training?  Bootcamp for doggies?

WORKING OUT
It is an awesome sign for me when my laundry has more workout clothes than regular clothes in it.  Lately I have been working out harder and longer than I have in a several years.  I see devil woman my trainer every week and she has a new custom workout for me to help with strength, balance, and endurance.  Last week she introduced me to Kettlebells.  I LOVE THEM!!  I was sore for 2 days after the fact but I felt like I got a full body strength and cardio workout.  I am scheduled to meet with her tonight too and I hope we do them again. 

I have also returned to Bootcamp.  I can't really turn down that workout since it is basically a free session with a trainer.  It is free, but vomit inducing.  I was happy on Tuesday night because I felt like I could hold my own in the class. 

Hot Yoga is still a part of my routine.  I decided to buy a package and go at least once a week.  I can't tell you enough how much I love this class.  I am seeing some major transformations in my body, but also in my ability not to bust out laughing men show up in banana hammocks or when someone lets one rip during class. 

But on top of all of that stuff.....my running seems to be improving.  Last Sunday, I ran 10 miles.  I should say I covered 10 miles.  I did my own version of the Galloway Method.  My intervals were 2.5 minutes running and 2.5 minutes walking.  As funny as it sounds, my pace was FASTER than if I ran the whole way.  For the marathon, I hope to increase the running portion and decrease the walking.  But I am flying by the seat of my pants on this one.  Getting a 10 miler in gave me some hope.

Although my workouts are going great the scale seems to be stuck at a number I thought I would never see.  I am a few pounds shy of my highest weight ever (maybe I ate more birthday cake than I thought).  Like I said, I am starting to see results and my clothes a little looser so I have some circulation around my midsection.  I am happy with that success, but I am a numbers girl and I get frustrated with the scale does not cooperate.  Ugh.  I hope that in a few weeks, the scale will have some mercy.  It is sad that I let a little gadget get to me.

That is my wrap-up.  The end of Summer is always nuts and it makes me welcome the start of the school year.  I am ready for things to slow down soon!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Urban Wildland Race Report

Warning:  Spawn bragging below.


Saturday my oldest son and I ran the Urban Wildland 5K.  It was his first race ever.  I was so excited and proud to be able to be able to do it with him.  He just turned 9 years old last Friday and this was part of his birthday celebration.  He did AWESOME.  He took off at a pace that I could barely maintain, but forced myself to keep up with him.  We ran, we walked, we ran some more.  I let him decide how we were going accomplish this race.  He would get a burst of energy when people would cheer him on.  The photo above is him sprinting it in to the finish.  That spot you see in the back....oh yeah...that is me.  He ditched his own momma!!!  Hmmmpf.  He had a blast and is already asking when he can do another race.  I am so proud of him!
His time: 41:08
My Time: 41:15



Saturday, July 30, 2011

I Have Sold My Soul to the Devil

Twin Cities Marathon is in a little over 9 weeks and I am still struggling with my running.  I came to the realization that if I am going to do this race, I need professional help (both mental and physical). With the recommendation of a friend, I reached out to our Boot Camp Bitch Instructor and I explained my situation.  I told her that come hell or high water, I was going to cross the finish line on October 2nd and I asked her if she thought she could help me.  She took me to do a fitness assessment and wrote down all sorts of things on a piece of paper.  She confirmed what I already knew, I was in rough shape.....pathetic really and no where near the condition of a marathon runner.  I was kind of nervous that she would laugh in my face and reject my insane goal.  She then stated "I would rock that marathon".  I signed on the dotted line and hired her for 8 weeks.
I have had two sessions with her and she makes Jillian Michaels look like a push-over.  I ran stairs with a medicine ball overhead, did wall sits, squats with weights, and inverted pull-ups.  I pushed and pulled a heavy boxing bag through a studio and I did some heavy tire flipping.  So far she she is keeping it interesting.  I felt pretty bad ass that I was able to complete her workouts, especially the upper body one.

Well.....It has been two days since my last session and the DOMS have set in.  OH MY GOD, I cannot straighten my arms.  AT. ALL.  I am walking around like the Hulk.  I know I am not being a wuss because my arms are actually SWOLLEN (although all of my co-workers would disagree because of my constant whining). Please excuse the elephantiasis-like arm.
With that said, she keeps my goal in mind and only pushes me as far as she knows I can go and even helps me out at times.  Right now I need to be pushed like she is pushing me.  I have been down for so long that I have forgotten what it it is like to really work hard.  It is a nice to have a reminder that I can still do this.   Even with the sore, swollen muscles...I think she will get me to my goal.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Warrior Dash

First, I feel like I need to get my head checked because I SIGNED UP FOR THIS!  The waiver was plain crazy....I feel like I signed away less doing my mortgage papers.  My favorite line was "water has not been tested for dangerous chemicals or disease".  Keep in mind, this girl will not swim in a lake.  With that out of the way, we picked up our packets and had a few moments to take in our surroundings.

Our wave started promptly at 8:30AM with a fire cannon.  Chubby Hubby and I started running when we hit the timing mat.  We were very cheery until we saw the crazy MOUNTAIN hill in front of us.  We knew there were going to be hills, after all the race was held at Afton Alps Ski Resort, but we were not expecting to run up an entire ski slope while we were in our starting euphoria.  Let me tell you it was not a bunny hill....it was a frickin' black diamond, steep ass, lean into it hill.  We ran about a quarter of the hill before we decided to say screw this conserve energy.  I reviewed the course online prior to the event, I seriously think that battleground map was just more of a suggested course because this was not like the website indicated.

We finally huff and puff our way to the top and we have our first set of obstacles.  It was a junk yard of cars to climb over.  Climbing through the cars and tires were easy enough, though I had to tread lightly because of the sharp objects that could potentially puncture a person.  I survived that without too much trauma.   Then we were off to the next surprise......there was some water spraying.  It didn't occur to me that that was an obstacle, I thought the water was there as a cool off mechanism.  NOPE.  They were snow making sprayers and we had to run through them.  The force and pressure of this water was crazy.  I was so disorientated when I came out of it.

Once I completed the first couple of obstacles it was all downhill from there.  Literally downhill. And then back uphill, and back down.  I would run as much as I could on the uphill, walk with long strides the rest, and then I would gingerly run the downhill...usually sideways.  It was pretty slick in spots because of the mud and water.  My goal was not do die or blow out a knee.  Success!

Yeah....I jumped that.
The other course obstacles were challenging and required a lot of upper body strength.  There were walls to jump, barbed wire to duck under. There were cargo nets and high walls to scale, boards to balance, and a dark tunnel to crawl into.  I completed all of the obstacles except one....the high cargo net.  I am TERRIFIED of heights.  I got about half way up and froze with fear when I realized I could see for miles!  I felt sick and it didn't help that the netting was not a solid stable surface.  I climbed down and walked around that one.  I made up for that obstacle doing the next one where I scaled the high wall with a rope.  I whimpered a bit but felt pretty bad ass after I conquered it.  The last 3 obstacles were awesome!  There was a water slide (which I have a pretty rad bruise on my leg from hitting the end), fire hurdles, and finally the mud pit/barbed wire crawl to the finish.

Chubby Hubby and I stuck together most of the race.  There were times I ran ahead of him, but he always caught up to me doing the obstacles. We finished together.  It was a very fun race and I can't wait to do another one.  The only thing I would do different would be to have a whole team of people to add to the fun factor and to have a person to "crew".  We left our stuff in our car and we were shuttled in from the parking lot.  At the finish we didn't have any of our cash.  We ended up leaving the party a little early.  Next time we will know better!  This was a double thumbs up race!

My official results were:
Time:  1:00:01  19:52/Mile
AG Place:  492
Place:  7645  NOT LAST!!!










Me looking tough after showing that wall who was boss!

A beer never tasted so good!

Believe it or not this is after we were hosed off.
I make horns look good!


Still so dirty