True Confession Thursday: Whatever It Takes

Last week I had Dr. Scott check out my IT band as it’s been really tight on long runs and I’m scared paranoid petrified cautious about injuries this close to Boston.  Dr. Scott suggested to have someone video tape me running, which is, you know, super easy when you’re on the trails running solo.  Anyway, I finally suckered some random guy walking his dog to video tape me running for 20 seconds.  #whateverittakes  I’m really happy he didn’t run away with my phone.

Yep, Tinkerbell shirt and hat on backwards (it was hot) - "13 year old boy, meets 13 year old girl" fashion.

Yep, Tinkerbell shirt and hat on backwards (it was hot) – “13 year old boy, meets 13 year old girl” fashion.

Later that evening I got home and the boys were naturally asking (aka, read: complaining) about what I was cooking for dinner.  Chicken piccata, risotto and steamed asparagus.  They really have such a tough life.

Chocolate:  Mom, aspawagus is awesome.
Me:  Because it tastes good?
Chocolate:  No
Me:  Because it’s good for you?
Chocolate:  [getting annoyed} No
Me:  Why then?
Chocolate:  Because it’s the only vegetable that makes your pee smell weally bad.  I’m going to eat a WOT of it.

#whateverittakes

It’s also been super foggy here in the mornings in SoCal (I know, we have it really rough) so I’ve been opting to wear my neon shirts on TOP of my jacket – yes jacket and it’s 50 degrees, I’m a SoCal weenie.  Unfortunately this is messing with my running ninja look (the all black I typically sport), but I do have some visibility and I get home from my run in 1 piece instead of bent over the hood of a car.  I know, I might be starting a ridiculous fashion trend.  #whateverittakes

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The other day #runger struck me something fierce and hard and I found myself pounding scrambled eggs, toast, and a spinach salad mid-day.  Unfortunately I had to run 1.5 hours later.  Not my favorite 6.5  miles, but it was the only chance I had to run. #whateverittakes #heytherelunchnicetoseeyouagain

I crashed the Road Runner Sports Girls Night Out by showing up with two wild & crazy guys.  (Desperate times, the only time I could squeeze in a much needed purchase) #whateverittakes

Wild and Crazy guysWait…not those wild & crazy guys….THESE wild & crazy guys

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How have you done whatever it takes this week?

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.

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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.

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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?

A Not So Sweaty Christmas

In my brilliant planning I didn’t realize that peak week training would hit right at Christmas.

#fail

Despite the busyness , I still had grand plans to squeeze in my 22 miler last weekend.

Then this happened.

KleenexAnd then this happened.

Thank you $2 corkage fee and heavy French meal for destroying my 22 miler

Thank you $2 corkage fee and heavy French meal for destroying my 22 miler

And eventually I eeked out 7.5 very slow miles…which probably did nothing for conditioning and simply served to clear my sinuses temporarily.  Then I didn’t run for 5 days.

Instead, I spent my time flying across the country to see my family in the frozen tundra Chicago.

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Some of you ate nice breakfasts at home for Christmas morning. We managed tacos on the plane for brunch. How LA chic.

And while there was a little of this

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And definitely some of this

IMG_2713There was very little use for any of this in my stocking…

IMG_2702So as the fevers and coughs seem to be dissipating and my body is acclimating to the frigid air…perhaps I’ll dust off the old running shoes and get back on marathon track.

How was your holiday?
Did you get coal in your stocking?

True Confession Thursday: Double Trouble

4.5 Miles
Lead Leg Strides

Yep, yesterday was a monster hill workout.  It was fast, it was brutal…and it didn’t feel nice at all, even though I knew it was doing a lot of good – kinda like going to the dentist.

But in more important news…I’m like the luckiest mom in the world because I get not just 1 birthday on Wednesday, but back to back birthday celebrations!  (Double pancake batter on day 1 saves monster time on day 2).

Such the snuggle bug. He spends much time in the crook of my arm.

Such the snuggle bug. He spends much time in the crook of my arm.

So today, on what we’re calling the 13 sandwich (12-13-12) I get to wish my Vanilla Bean the happiest birthday.  This kid is something else – filled with compassion, kindness, humor, and is quite the introvert at times.  Bless his stubborn soul, he once sat in a car seat for 3+ hours refusing to apologize to his aunt.  Methinks he’s got the tenacity in him that just might make him a great long distance runner :)

Laguna Hills Half Marathon, 10K and 5K photos by Supersports Photo

Good thing I’ve been doing some speed work this week, the extra cake is catching up!  We still have 4 more birthday celebrations to go over the next week to celebrate with all of the important peeps in the boys lives with these mid-week birthdays.

Tell me about your favorite speed workout?
I need to mix mine up a bit!

12-12-12

On 12-12-12 my little chocolate nugget turns 6.

And it’s the only day of there year where I have a 5, 6 & 7 year old.

Sometimes life is full of surprises, and when this little man quite literally burst into my life full of energy, spunk and personality, I never could have guessed the journey would have been this fun.

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My little “baby” on our first visit together…

So today, I raise a running shoe to my favorite middle son!  Happy Birthday Chocolate :)

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Yes that’s him holding almost 8 pounds of ribs.  His only birthday dinner requests were ribs, salad and a chocolate cake.  I think he thinks all of the ribs are his…poor thing is sure to be disappointed.

The morning will inevitably start with a video of the birthday wake up, breakfast pancakes, a super special lunch and dinner on birthday boy’s choice.

What are your birthday traditions?

Hit the Road Jack

Sunday
7.5 Miles
Freezing Cold Strides

On Sunday I woke up and opted to sneak in a few miles early in the morning.  I was up in LA and only had a pair of running shorts packed, not pants.  You can imagine how happy I was to see this on the thermometer.

If there was ever a WTF moment, this was one of them….

I know, I know…my inner Chicagoan is ashamed that the 43 in November was considered cold, but I seriously contemplated going back to the heated house instead of busting out a few miles.

Irregardless of the cold, I pushed on through and even broke a little tiny bit of sweat at the end in my elbow pit proving it wasn’t THAT cold after all.  Bummer on the wasted theatrics.

Sunday evening I had to hit the road (actually the air) for work and headed up to Oakland for two days.  I super miss my babes but lucky for me there’s an app for that.

If you can’t be there for the real tuck in, the FaceTime tuck in is not a shabby second.  The best part is Chocolate lurking in the shadows so as to only be identified by his teeth.  Kudos to him for coming up with the ninja tuck in.  Vanilla stuck with coy snuggle and Strawberry channeled his inner hill billy sporting his gap toothed smile for bed.

As far as hitting the actual pavement this week, I’ve decided to take a few days off from running.  *gasp*  *thrash*  *shock*  My legs are still a little creaky & squeaky and I’m noticing some tweakiness and pulls in places I don’t like.  Since the name of the game is stay injury free until Boston, I opted to take 5 days off of running since I have two big, hilly challenging races this weekend.

Instead of lacing up the ol’ running shoes, I’ll just hit the bike, elliptical, etc. for a few days. I’m probably going to hit up Dr. Scott for an ART session at some point before the races to ensure things are nice and loose and keep the ol’ tendonitis from flaring up.   Not my favorite choice ever, but worth it to keep the legs fresh and uninjured.

What’s a hard decision you’ve made this week?
Do you have a favorite tuck in routine from being a kid or with your kids now (if you’ve got ‘em)? 

True Confession Thursday: The Absent-Minded Professor

5 Miles
Hacking Strides

At 6am yesterday morning and put together a “to do” list for the day.  I quickly stashed the paper away so as not to lose it.  As the day wore on, I couldn’t figure out where in the world I put that stupid piece of paper.  I worked and was in mile 4 out of 5 before I remembered where the stupid paper was.

Genius!

Somewhere around mile 4.25 in a 5 mile run I couldn’t figure out why my chest was all scratchy.

The run itself was a total boneheaded move as I have had a craptastic cough on and off all week and it went all kamikaze on me last night and this morning.  During a period of Robitussin reprieve I thought I felt good enough to squeeze a few miles in on my way to picking up the boys from school this evening.

Stupid move.

I fought the cough and the cough won.  This girl’s gotta remember that running is okay if it’s in the neck and above, but when the cold’s in the chest – keep the running shoes off the toesies.

Snuggle sesh!

Luckily Vanilla and Chocolate were down for a snuggle sesh before bed to help make up for the day’s stupidity.  Apparently there’s nothing that some nightly nestling from showered and pajamaed 5 year-olds can’t fix.

What have you literally lost “right under your nose”?
When do you know when to run and when to cut it out when you’re under the weather?

Communicating With Herring

4 Miles
Reflective Strides

You don’t have a ninja reading the Sunday paper at your house? You’re missing out!

This evening I was running errands and heard Strawberry pipe up from the back seat.

Strawberry:  [reading National Geographic kids...'cause let's face it, only he would] Mom, did you know herring communicate by passing gas.

A little time passes…and apparently much gas because eventually I hear yelling from the other room.

Strawberry:  Hey Mom!  Check it out, I’m the great herring communicator.

This, my friends, is my life.

Which got me thinking…about thinking…

With my post-ankle sprain recovery here I’m having to go slow…suuuper slow which means I have lots of time to think while I’m running – not just obsessing about my watch and speed.

This morning I found myself rewriting the “Night Before Christmas” to the “Night Before the Race”, praying, dreaming about bagels and wondering when Pumpkin Spice was showing up at Starbucks (good news -the answer was today!).

So maybe going slow isn’t all that bad.  I had a breakfast planned, a plan of attack for a work project, some monster processing and reflection about the “big things” in my life right now…and the sun was barely peaking over the mountains by the time I was done.

Perfect view to end a slow & steady run…there’s mountains back there somewhere….

What consumes your thoughts when you’re running?
Are you a herring communicator?  [you don't really have to answer that]

Hitting the Brakes

I can’t run.  I can’t bike.  I can’t swim.  I can’t do freaking anything without my ankle swelling up and making my life generally miserable.

So since I can’t run forgive me if I get a little Momish on you.  Yes, it’s like Amish but way sappier and a heck of a lot more sentimental.  But the next two weeks are quite possibly the worst time for me to be throwing the brakes on my physical exertion, because fits hitting the shan here folks.

Let’s preface this convo by saying I’m usuallynot overly sentimental.  I mean, I typically only cry when I have to get rid of a pair of running shoes I’ve been overly attached to or my sports bra gets thrown in the dryer.

Overly sentimental. Psht! Not me, I only watched him sleep like this for 40 minutes the other day. What?!  Who am I?

But for the love of the land the fact that my TWO youngest boys are starting kindergarten is throwing me.

Let’s talk about Vanilla for a moment because he’s my total snuggle puppy.  I mean, the kid wakes up and still asks for a quick morning cuddle before breakfast.  If we’re walking outside and I hold my hand out, within 2 seconds he’s all over it like a shark on chum and has his sticky little hand nestled into mine.

But. it. won’t. last.

Why swim when we can spend a 95+ degree day snuggled on the SAME lounge chair?

I know the days are numbered.  He won’t squeeze my hand for reassurance or hold onto my waist because he’s needing a little extra confidence boost.  He won’t think I’m the coolest person on the planet (which is really a shame because, hello, he’s almost right) and I’m really struggling with letting my last two babies grow up.  As a mom of almost twins (a day apart) it’s like a 2 for 1 blow to the gut with each milestone.

Normal TV watching stance. Poor thing, got Mom’s scrawntastic chicken legs. Shhh don’t tell him.

So I’m literally savoring these moments with my babes, because honestly, 5 & 7 are ridiculously amazing ages.  I lap them up like the last drop of wine in my cup and recognize that things will be far too different in the blink of an eye.

And in that same vein I have to remember that a few weeks of resting my craptastic foot will seem like nothing in the future and I’ll be just fine racing in a few weeks even if it’s not a fancy schmancy PR.  And I shouldn’t get crabby when I have a bad run because a bad run is better than no run at all.

Anyone else wanting to bottle their current phase in life up and drink it forever? 
What makes it so special?

One Fried Mother[board]

20 minutes stair machine
20 minutes elliptical
Seriously Scorned Ankle Strides

Sunday was an awesome day.  I have so much to tell you about it, but let’s just say our first ever “Daycation” was a raging success.  Which is to say that I probably deserved the Monday that was.

Sunday sneak peak – all so relaxing!

Let me preface this by saying I’m a sunscreen freak.  We were at the beach and I lotioned the boys up and then must have gotten interrupted by what could only have been an elementary boy travesty and forgot to finish the front of my stomach.  Oopsies.  One fried mother.

I got up early on Monday to get a jump start on work only to find my computer completely and entirely dead.  4 hours and a flourishing relationship with John Carlo the Dell Tech support guy later, and I found out I had one fried motherboard.

The rest of the day was a flurry of phone calls, trouble shooting, new computer buying (best boss *waves* hi Jim!), and by 4pm I’m in the clothes from yesterday, that I slept in, and I’m feeling flustered, disgusting and beyond crabby.

Naturally – I call my mom to whine.

At this moment yelled something about how it was time to make an adult version of that old Alexander kids book- My Terrible Horrible, No Good, Very Shitty, F-ed Up Monday.  It only made me even more angry that I sat there thinking about how other people have it so much worse and I’m pissy about some trivial inconveniences.

I wish I could blame some “ahem” hormones, but people, my personality is always this darling and bubbly (no really hormones were definitely to blame).

I swear this has a point about fitness – bear with me…

In other news…I’m in love. It’s a little rocky here as we’re getting to know one another, but I’m falling pretty fast and hard. Sorry John Carlo, our Dell love just doesn’t compare.

At this point picking up my children from day camp was a little dicey.  I love them and would like them to continue loving me, so I opted for a little pit stop at the gym for 40 minutes before picking them up.  Trust me, it was for their own good.  After sweating, slogging and even despite being unable to run (that’s another post for another day when I’m a little less hormonally raging), I felt 100 times better and picked my babes up with a smile on my face.

What workout “grounds” you?
What would you name your inappropriate children’s book about bad days?