Jumping for Joy

Stride-Free Still :( 

Well kids, somedays you can just accept defeat…and others…well

You jump for joy.

Tink Finish 2013Why yes, that is my elbow pit sweat making a mark in my grey shirt.  Good wardrobe choice – almost as bad as Jennifer Lawrence at the SAG awards.

Remarkably this was post-flu, 1:35-1:36 minutes of actual running finish line shenanigans.  And I gotta say, my basketball and ballet days still serve me well, because I gots mad hopz yo.

But today I’m jumping for joy for another reason.  I went to get an ART session for this newly diagnosed plantar fasciitis for my footsie and as the doc was working he said, the diagnosis just felt a little off.  He kept feeling all sorts of tendons in my calf, because after all, the foot bone’s connected to the ankle bone, the ankle bone’s connected to the tendons in your calf.

And wouldn’t you know when he started messing with my tibialis posterior, I was yelping and hollering like Honey Boo Boo’s family in front of a tub of margarine and ketchup.


So it turns out that this is just some mad tendonitis from an aggravated calf that was probably pissed off by my pretty walk in flip flops 1 day after a race while sick.

Yes, this was stupid on my part.  What can I say?  I gave the genius genes to the babes.


Fact: Plastic rimmed glasses make you smarter!

What’s your most training post-race stunt?

Do you have a signature finish line move?
I’m thinking the Mary Poppins hop is going to the top of my list.

It’s a Boston Miracle

Still Strideless

It’s a Boston Miracle!

IMG_2856I wore jeans for 2 days in a row!

I can still keep *mostly* running.

Being the classypants that I am, I’ve staved off actual running injuries while, you know, running the last 6 months.  I, however, have failed miserably at avoiding “walking” injuries.  You know, like spraining my ankle walking out to the car last fall.  And apparently aggravating some serious plantar fasciitis by taking a nice stroll in flip flops the day after a race this week.

I know, I’m a genius.  And lucky enough for each and every one of you, I actually educate tomorrow’s future leaders at a respected academic institution.  World be warned.

The good news:  I can run again in a few days.

The bad new:  It’s probably going to hurt a lot on and off until Boston.

The worse news:  There’s something pre-arthritic in the formation of my foot (and apparently my grandma had whatever it is the doctor was referencing).

So I’m going to ignore the, “Hey you’re 31 and that big toe joint looks pre-arthritic” and focus on “Hey, take it easy, try to run without pushing off your big toe, and make sure to get your Vanilla Ice on” part of the message.

Pictures2So the show will go on.  It might not be as good of a show as I thought (possibly buh bye 3:23 marathon goal), but there will be a show in Boston!

True Confession Thursday: The Waiting Place


I had a good run scheduled for today…it was all scheduled, planned and ready to go.

But the fact of the matter is that my foot have other plans.

The theme of the last few months has been – stay injury free.  I have quit running whenever I’ve felt any twinges, tweaks, etc.  I’ve not pushed my distance or speed more than is reasonable.

I’ve trained smart.  Okay minus running right after the flu, but that doesn’t explain this:


Apparently the nearly 14 miles I ran on Sunday at a quick pace were fine, but that granny 0.7 mile walk was just too much.  Something tweaked in my foot mid-walk.  And while Tuesday I got out 4.5 miles with no pain during the run, by Wednesday night it was swollen and I could hardly walk.

So that pain led to this….


Check out my gnarly crooked, bent 4th toe. Ewww

And that makes me want to swear, cry and hurl inanimate objects at the wall.  Honestly, the xrays were mostly a precaution because let’s face it, with Boston 10 weeks away, I’m not going to push it too much.

Tomorrow I’m going to visit a sports podiatrist to confirm or deny what the general doc suspects —> likely a sprain, strain or tendonitis in the arch of my foot.  I am hoping this is nothing more than a temporary setback…but we shall see.

When will I run again?  Heck if I know.  Will this impact my training?  I hope not.

The best part was when I was starting to cry full on crying on the couch last night thinking about Boston and my little babes came around and comforted me by rubbing my back and praying for my foot.  I could eat them for breakfast they’re so amazing.

Anyone ever have pain in the arch/ball of the foot that radiated out and swelled spontaneously?

I Need Answers

Rest Day

I’m the queen of random facts and mostly useless knowledge.  Want to know how many Power Ball winning options there are in the lottery?  Approximately 195 million.  Want to know that random story behind the football player on your screen?  I probably know it…

But today, I really need your advice on some things….

Stomach Woes

Where be my obedient intestines?

Where be my obedient intestines?

Getting uber personal here…my stomach has been a mess the last few weeks when I’ve been running.  While normally a quick trip to the bathroom pre-run cleans out the ol’ pipes enough to make it through my long runs, lately I’m maniacally running to find a bathroom mid-run like a toddler finding chocolate eggs on Easter morning.  I’m stopping about every 4-5 miles to go…and it’s ugly.

Yes, I’m going before I run.  And no I haven’t changed my diet or routine much.  And yes I know this is fairly normal, but it sure is inconvenient.  Have any of you ever struggled with this?  Anything work to treat it?

Who Wears Short Shorts?

Am I supposed to wear these?

Am I supposed to wear these?  My only non-black pair of shorts and I never wear them…

Me does!  Yes, my hunt for new running shorts I can claim as “mine” is still on.  In the process, I’ve found Big Foot, the Loch Ness Monster and the Easter Bunny, but I’m still yet to find a short I like that I can afford and that does the trick.  My requirements – must be short, need the built in liner/underwear.   Anyone have any good ideas?

Oh and in other short news – I’m so tired of black, but it’s the only thing that hardly shows sweat, and the occasional sprint to the finish bladder leak (sorry peeps, it happens).  Nothing says embarrassing to my kids when I run before school pickup and hear their friends whispering, “I’m sorry, it looks like your mom had an accident today?  Does she need to borrow one of my pull ups?”  What color shorts do you wear?  

Marching On
In my quest for 12 in 12, I need to find myself a March half marathon.  I’m not looking for a race to race or to PR, but to just use as a training run and push myself on a slightly longer run one last time before Boston.  Know of any good March races?

Tinkerbell Half Marathon Race Review

14 miles total (13.1 & nice warmup through parking garage)
Happiest Strides on Earth

As I told you, on Friday I turned into a Flu-zee.  You know the kind of person who sleeps around [the house] and sports smeared eye makeup all over her face and disheveled hair.

I guess that the echinacea pounding, vitamin C popping, Zinc lozenge sucking week trying to prevent it kept the flu to a minimum because on Saturday I woke up feeling like I had been hit by a truck, but fever free and just slept all. day. long.  I went to bed unsure if I’d run on Sunday morning.

IMG_2841On Sunday I randomly woke up super early feeling so so and unsure if I should go.  After a quick shower to wash away the last flu-zy remnants I decided to go and take it easy and roll with my body.

Yes, 2:34.  The one downside of Disney races is that they are SUUUUPPPPEEER early to get the race done before the park opens.

IMG_2844While waiting in line for the Port-A-Potty I decided to play a super fun game of I Spy with myself and it went something like this…”I spy with my little eye a red sweatshirt…wait is Skinny Runner under that hood?”

Neither of us were sure what we wanted to run so we just opted to start together and see how it went.  The Run Disney people put together a fabulously organized race.  With around 12,000 people, they got everyone rounded up into 5 corrals that went off in approximately 5 minute intervals.  In fact, we heard them still sending off the last corral around mile 4.5.

Lucky for us we got into Corral A and made our way towards the front.  Minnie Mouse and Daisy Duck gave one last cheer and we were off….


SR and I were just running and chatting and were pretty surprised to have pulled out a 7:35 first mile.  Feeling great we just kept chatting and running around 7-7:30 minute miles.  I didn’t wear a watch or timer, but only know thanks to SR’s Garmin.  Despite it being a lot of people, the pace we ran left us with a very open course – not crowded one bit.

Around mile 5  is where I started asking EVERY Disney employee where the next bathroom was and was told, “Just ahead” (one pointed behind me..uh no thank you).  I’ve never stopped in a race because I had to go #2 so badly, but I should have remembered what Strawberry told me the day after his fever broke “I had diarrhea all morning.”

Eventually I made it to a bathroom and was in there for FOUR flippin’ minutes (to anyone in there I apologize, it was loud, I was panting and catching my breath, it was all shades of ugly and probably sounded like a rabid dog trapped in a bathroom stall trying to get out).

I got back on track right onto the course, but sadly my stomach staged a revolt of sorts the rest of the race.  Every fast food restaurant, gas station and port a potty passed made my stomach lurch and churn longingly for a visit.

Around mile 5.5ish the race course leaves the park you hit the streets of Anaheim.  For those in corral A this meant a VERY long stretch of very dark streets.  Fear not, there were police officers on literally every corner (I was sure to thank as many as possible) and while some found it a little weird and creepy, I actually found it kind of liberating to not know what was ahead and to just run….

Even without a watch I’d usually mentally track my splits, but let’s face it my mind was on one place the last few miles – BATHROOM.  Despite my 4 minute potty break I finished in 1:39:22.  I came in 6th of 1923 in my Age Group.

I literally crossed the finish line as the sun was coming up and snapped a picture with SR and Kristina before grabbing my super fabulous snack box.


Disney does a great job with the details.  As you finished you got a bottle of Gatorade, a bottle of water, a banana and the box of snacks below (not to mention the super awesome medal which weighs as much as my left leg).IMG_2851

I spent another 20 minutes in a port-a-potty and then stopped to thank some of the ChEAR Squad.  One of the best things about Disney races is the amount of course support – there are tons of cheerleaders, bands, Disney Cast Members, and other social groups cheering on the runners.  One of the best groups was the Red Hat Society.  I stopped to thank them for their support and we ended up having a fabulous photo shoot.  These ladies were great!

2013-01-20Despite my GI issues during the race and the 4 minute potty break, I ran a great time – especially since I had the flu the few days leading up to it.  Sadly, my body was not so happy about my results and I literally spent 4 hours in the bathroom after the race.

It was a pretty rough post-race day as my body probably wasn’t ready to handle the stress of a race at that pace, but all in all it was worth it!  I laid around watching football and eating nothing much because every bite seemed to put up a fight with my stomach.  Good news, I’ll probably eat nonstop on Monday and Tuesday.

I know Disney races are pricey, but they really do know how to run a great race – everything is super organized.  If your a newbie or looking for a first race, I’d say it’s worth it to pony up to pay the cash for a great course, great support and to participate in a race that moves like clockwork!

Run Disney Tink Half Meetup

5 miles
Sporadic Strides

Between last night’s speed work session and this morning’s Tinkerbell Half meetup, I did a lot of varying speeds in my miles.  I had full intentions to run this evening…but we’ll save that story for later ;)

Per usual, I woke up at the butt crack of dawn.  What wasn’t usual was that instead of pulling out my laptop for work for a few hours, I headed out to Disney for the Tinkerbell Half Meetup.

2013-01-18I haven’t run a Disney race nor done a meetup so this was all new territory for me.  Disappointed I was not.


sunrise over the sorcerer’s hat

We’ve always known I’m a little slow to warm up in the mornings.  Check out the grumpasaurus with her arms crossed in the white shirt in the middle.

Photo Courtesy of Run Disney

Photo Courtesy of Run Disney

Don’t worry the caffeine kicked in shortly thereafter and I transformed into my not-so-charming self.  After a brisk start we set off for a 2 mile run through the parks using with my new BFF’s (Jeff Galloway) method (run, walk, run).


Uh, can you see the excitement pouring off my face? A little too excited? No such thing!

No seriously, I got to chat it up with this running legend for about 20 minutes talking running, cold hands, kids, etc…and the official Run Disney photog eventually asked if Jeff would pose with my new friend Jenny and I in front of Cars Land.  Honestly it was the best 20 minutes of the whole event.


Another highlight was meeting Sean Astin...whom my kids absolutely adore from Rudy.  They always refer to it as the “first adult movie” they saw.  And yes, I let them say it like that because it always gives room for a good chuckle.

IMG_2833It was a brisk morning so after a quick ride Radiator Springs Racers (look Ma! no lines!!), we headed inside to a fabulous breakfast spread and some great talks from Disney’s Diet Diva (don’t worry, we talked about what types of pizza we like to order, she gets us *mostly* healthy eating folks) and Ali Vincent who won the ONLY season of The Biggest Loser I have ever watched.

In addition to the awesome tech shirts, all of us received a park hopper ticket for this weekend (including parking!) and there were a bunch of raffles (fear not my losing but everyone around me winning streak is still going strong).

I left super encouraged and excited, until I realized I was a little dizzy.  As I was working throughout the morning, I realized I had the chills.  Which then made me realize I had a fever.  So I guess the flu Strawberrry has been fighting all week finally won.  I’m *hoping* a little Disney magic will resolve this mess quickly so I can run on Sunday.

While it might be a very slow race (perhaps my slowest ever), I didn’t finally sign up for a Disney race only to let the flu win out!

Ride ‘Em Cowboy

14 Miles
Startling Strides

Sunday was my second valiant attempt at a longer run.  I’m not going to sugar coat anything.  Since the amazing runs of December, leading to a big PR mid-month leading to about 3 weeks of nothingness, well….

I haven’t had a good run since. 

It’s completely disheartening.  I’ve been in slumps before, but usually after 2-3 weeks I can at least pull a decent run out of my behind.  And speaking of behinds, let me explain why this run was a bust.

[please note, this is gross and personal...intrigued? read on. disgusted? stop right now]

I should be ashamed of myself

I should be ashamed of myself

You know that phase, it really chaps my ass?

Well, I learned what it mean to have a chaffed ass.  I have faced a lot of pain running – pushed through pulls, tweaks, etc.  But when things got a little, err…uncomfortable in the southern hemisphere around mile 12.5 I thought it was no big deal to make it the 2.5 miles home.  By mile 13.75 I called for a ride and by mile 14 I was walking down the side of the road awaiting my chariot like a cowboy who rode from LA to Vegas on his horse.

Everyone in the car laughed watching me waddle down the street.

It’s okay, I might have laughed too.

I wouldn’t wish that pain on anyone.  When I literally say I could not run a single step further, there is no ounce of exaggeration in that statement.

So there’s a first time for everything.  

The best part is that when I got picked up, I was asked if I should have used BodyGlide.

Me: I  don’t know…I’ve never had an issue like this before.  

A little back story on the body glide.  Last summer, Strawberry won a stick at a Road Runner Sports night and I quickly confiscated it from him.

Icing on the cake?  At Road Runner VIP night Strawberry did an 8:00 min timed mile and then won the prize every 7 year-old dreams of - Body Glide. The best part of it all - explaining what Body Glide is used for.

As this conversation about appropriate places to put BodyGlide and how exactly does one’s bum get chaffed is taking place, a little voice from the back seat chirps up chiming into the conversation.

Strawberry:  Uh, well if that’s the case, I certainly don’t want that Body Glide back from you mom.  Thanks.

Ahhh, out of the mouths of babes.

So the saggin’ wagon picked me up, because my butt hurt.  How about ‘dem apples when it comes to excuses to not finish a run?

Where’s the weirdest place you’ve chaffed?

Have you ever stolen something from your kids?

Adventures is Cross Training

4 Miles (Days behind…that’s Friday)
Stressy Strides

As I type this there’s some serious cardio madness going on in my living room.  3 half dressed boys are clawing, climbing and pummeling each other relentlessly.  Some might call this “Lord of the Flies” like scene chaos, I call it pre-dinner wiggles.

So this week I decided to amp up the cross-training and attend a PiYo (Pilates-Yoga mix) class at the gym.  I thought it would be relaxing.


Why distance runners don’t do well in group classes.

-Don’t Stand So Close to Me?  The best part about running is you go past people….fast.  Here I was forced to sit next to and observe everyone’s idiosyncrasies for a full hour.  It’s really hard to concentrate when the person in your line of sight of the instructor is picking out their wedgie approximately every 3 seconds.  Two words honey, “Go commando.” You can thank me later.

Runner's Feet = not pretty

Runner’s Feet = not pretty

-Sockless Joe.  Seriously, I walked in and everyone had their shoes AND socks off. WHAT?!  As I peered around at the pedicured toes, I was grateful that I actually had all of my toenails at the moment and that I had filed down the damaged earlier that day.  While everyone slipped and slid around on the ground, my ridiculous callouses provided some delightful traction for the lunges.

-It’s so hard…to walk.  The class seemed pretty benign and while it was tough, it didn’t seem that bad.  Until I had to climb into the back seat of a tall SUV the next day.  And running..psshhh…my legs were like lead not from achiness but tiredness.  That 60 minute class took the life out of my legs for a few days.

-Funny Looking.  The beauty of running is that, at worst, you only see the people around you for 1-2 minutes.  So if you have on crazy mismatching clothes, it doesn’t matter.  Just run faster and no one will see.  Here, my mismatched, hodge podge get up was on display for an hour.

Will I do PiYo again?  I don’t know.  Perhaps there are other options where I don’t have to go barefoot or stare at relentless seat picking that might be a better use of my 60 minutes.

What’s your favorite cross training?
I am partial to my Jillian Michael DVDs- especially since I can wrap them up in about 30 minutes at home, but I’ll try most cross training at least once!

Are you a gym lover or gym hater?
If you’ve been here long enough you know I hate the gym.  My $39/year membership (yes you read that right) is mostly to shower after long runs when I’m not near my house. 

True Confession Thursday: A Better Me

PiYo whatever
Stretchy Strengthy Strides

I had a really funny True Confession Thursday all queued up for your reading pleasure- sure to make you chuckle…but for a minute I want to get a little more serious and a lot more honest.

Secret:  Strawberry was the best surprise I’ve ever had.

I had big dreams you know.  When I was 5, I had two very distinct, but clearly compatible career choices I was going to pursue:

to be a Supreme Court Justice, oh and to be Vanna White.


M’lady Sandy Day -O (childhood hero) and Vanna White (slightly more embarrassing childhood hero)

With dreams like that and a penchant for words, it’s no surprised I studied English in college ;)

Sure, I thought about having kids, but wasn’t sure when I’d fit it in between my justice purveying and letter turning.  But, life, as it so often turns out, had different plans.

And can I say, I’ve never been happier that my plans turned out differently.

Without these three bambinos, I wouldn’t be half the woman I am today.


This morning I was flying out for work and didn’t get to see the boys this morning.  As I literally flew over the house the thought of their sticky, sweat morning smell clung to my nose.  My lips pulsed to kiss their warm, weary cheeks.  My ears longed to hear the sound of their muffled mewing as they sleepily sound out the morning’s breakfast orders (#1- frozen blueberries & honey toast, #2- peanut butter toast & milk, #3- plain oatmeal, not to soggy with blueberries and milk).

And then I did something I don’t do often, ESPECIALLY in public.  I just started crying.  Right there on the plane – tears streaming down my face (gah! the one day I wear makeup!), snot trickling out of my nose, I miss you more than they will ever realize tears.

Sandy Day-O would probably be ashamed.

And then I remembered the best part of motherhood – those little men have made me the best version of me.  While my childhood plans were filled with plans of making a change in the world (have you seen how many viewers Wheel of Fortune has?!?), little did I know that I would be given the opportunity to have my world changed by three little people, in ways I could never, ever in my wildest dreams imagine.

My boys have made me the best version of me possible.  They constantly stretch me to be more patient, to deepen my understanding, to drag out compassion and grace when I think that there’s none left to give, to dig deeper when reaching my goals because three little sets of eyes are watching, to realize that whenever I think I have anything figured out, there’s a whole mountain of knowledge left to climb.  They let me see the world in a new way, they force me to be honest with myself, they show me what faith really, truly, and clearly means every. single. day.

While I love their ever growing independence, every moment they are away, it’s like a little pieces of my heart are walking around in this big, scary world.  And I’ll be totally honest, I have no idea how to cope with that.  I suppose it will get easier, but some days, it just doesn’t feel like it ever will.

So I never got to be on the Supreme Court.  And Vanna, thanks to Botox and a good surgeon, will never, ever need to retire leaving a job opening.  But that’s okay, I ended up getting the best job in the world anyway.

Can You Dig It?

13.5 Miles (Sun-Tuesday)
Squeeze ‘em in Strides

It’s 2013 and everyone’s writing about their resolutions, recaps of 2012, and what not.

So here’s my version:  2012 had more good than bad and 2013 is all about taking things 1 day at a time.  Enough said.

Instead of getting into the dirty deets about the past or future, I’d rather tell you about some things I’m digging right now at this very moment.

My Little Buttheads

IMG_2779Could you just eat him up?

IMG_2798Just when I want to ring someone’s neck for erasing my work “to do list” I realize it was done just to write THAT…presh

My New Jacket

So if you are a Costco member, do yourself a favor and run, don’t walk to the store.  If you don’t have a membership – go stand outside and beg someone to take you or do yourself a favor and show up on my front porch and I’ll drive you there myself.  Because you need and I mean NEED this jacket.


Hey who didn’t brush their hair NOR put on makeup today? I showered, that’s one step in the right direction, right?

It’s a wicking, back venting athletic jacket.  Three pockets with zippers (two in the normal hip pattern and one on the upper arm) CHECK.  Thumbholes – CHECK.  Flip over mittens /handcovers- CHECK.  I’m seriously in love with it.

Yes I’m a little too excited, but as I’ve mentioned before Michael Phelps and I have a few things in common (see below), but mostly it’s that I have freakishly long arms.

michael phelps vs. me

So when I find a jacket that the thumbholes actually fit on my thumbs and not in the middle of my forearm, I get a little ridiculously enthusiastic.  It’s like I just discovered that chocolate was added as a food group by the FDA.


Surprise! Thumbholes reaching actual thumbs & tackling the hand covers

You do not know how excited I am that the arms are actually long enough for me.

Oh, did I mention this bad boy is $24.99?!?!?!?!?!

Um yeah.  You’re welcome because your 40-60 degree training will never be the same again for that price.  And with the 80 some odd dollars you saved on this jacket, you can register for a super fun race go to Yogurtland 35 times.

What are you digging lately?

What’s piece of workout gear is the hardest for you to buy?