Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 in Review

To think: last year I was disappointed in my performance! This year I *really* fell short. As in: didn't even hit last year's goals! I just couldn't imagine what I would go through mentally after I completed the marathon. But, to keep it all fair and honest, here is a review of my goals from last year, and how I performed:

Swim: 141,000 yards (80 miles) - FAIL. 80,000 yards.
Bike: 1000 miles - FAIL. 436 miles.
Run: 1000 miles - EPIC FAIL. 533 miles, and injured.
Lift: 50 times - FAIL. 15 times.
Core: 50 times - FAIL. 19 times.

My weight goal? Get back below 130 (damnit), and then maintain 125-130lbs. - Sorta. Got below 130, and spent 240 days within range.

Athletically, I had a bit of a stall this year. That's ok. These things happen. I am still a runner. I still love to run. I'm just a little injured. I am still a triathlete, though I'm thinking about focusing more on running in 2010. But swimming is the only thing I can do right now, and may be the only thing I can do for the next 6 or so months, so I'll still be doing "tri training".

Humanly, I'm in a better place than last year. I made a decision regarding my job. I promoted into the "glass ceiling" position. And I am happier for it. I miss the people at my old job, but I love the work in my new job. And I am actually happy to pause what has been a rather meteoric rise through the ranks of this company. I am challenged in my new position, and I'd like to take a while to actually learn it and get my feet back on the ground!!

I wrote my grateful post on Thanksgiving. I'm still grateful for all that!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Decade in Review

I saw a decade in review post elsewhere, and I started thinking about the past decade for me. It was a doozy, possibly the decade in my life with the most changes that I'll ever have. For that, it gets a post.

2000: Returned home from first semester in college to ring in the New Year with old high school friends. Finished first year in college with enough credits to be a junior, didn't fail anything, changed my major a bunch. Realized my long hair looked like crap, had suite-mate cut it off.

2001: Went to Italy for the summer to study art and architecture. Papa died. Uncle Manuel died. Began my depression.

2002: Got mono, was sick for 6 months. Granny died. Went into counseling and began to dig myself out of the depression. Met Preston, eventually began dating. Worked my first library job.

2003: Graduated college. Went on 2 archaeological digs: one in New Mexico (where I spent 2 months living in a tent and crapping in a crevasse), one in southern Italy. Tried to move to Houston to be with Preston (where I slept on Aunt Dollie's couch for 3 months), but couldn't get a job. Applied to grad school.

2004: Lived in Denton, getting my master's degree and missing Preston. Dad was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia and had major surgery. Got Grimmy and Cal, my precious kitties.

2005: Moved to Houston (finally!), got my master's degree, got a ("real") job.

2006: Got engaged to Preston, bought a house, got a promotion.

2007: Started running again. Got married. Sugar, my kitty since I was 9 years old, died.

2008: Started triathloning, got a promotion.

2009: Ran my first marathon, traveled to London, got another promotion.

It is arbitrary to say that this past decade had the most changes that I'll ever see. I know that my life will continue to evolve. But, honestly, I went from being a teenager to an adult in the past 10 years, and I believe that that is one of the largest (and certainly most enduring) changes that I'll ever undergo. I survived a depression, went from drunken itinerant college student to married marathoner homeowner. That's pretty huge.

Merry Christmas!

We had two Christmases this year: the weekend before we went to the in-laws' in Fredericksberg. That was nice. Fredericksberg is a lovely little town, and really lovely all dressed up for the holidays.

Preston's grandparents are sweet and super cute. And we got some decent loot!
Then the following weekend, we went to Dallas for Christmas with my families. It actually started snowing on Christmas Eve as we were arriving in Dallas where we had dinner at my cousin's.
The next morning was still white - a white Christmas in Texas!

Got some good loot: Star Trek movies, arm warmers, a hook for my medals.

And Preston got the coolest shirt EVAR from the coolest wifey EVAR.
And then we went to my Dad's family's where I got nice and drunk and we played Catch Phrase, which is super-fun when you are drunk.

On Saturday we headed home, and on the way we bought a couch! (Not my living room.)


On Sunday we cleaned, and cleaned, and cleaned some more. And the house is still dirty. But cleaner. Couch is coming this Saturday, can't wait!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

BB Ultra is Back!!

Went for another little run Monday in my Vibrams. By little, I mean C25KW3D1. And my calves are S.O.R.E. And my knee wasn't a huge fan. I'm back to wondering if it'll ever get better without me stopping completely for a period of time. It probably won't.... but I'm not stopping until mid-March, because that's when I'm not signed up for any more races. What?? It is just 4 more to go... I'll continue to take it easy between them... I'll have 6 whole weeks between the Texas Half in Kingwood and the Austin Half...

Then, I'll take however long off it takes. Promise. And when I'm all better, I'll C25K (if necessary, 9 weeks). Then I'll OHR (10 weeks). Then I'll train for a Half (8 weeks). Then a Full (if there's time). Then an Ultra (if there's time - if there's not, then a 25K), because...

Big Bend Ultra (25K/50K) is back, baby!!

January 16, 2011.

I'm there. Count me in.

I don't know what distance I'll be running. I don't care. I will be there. Even if it is only for the 10K, I'll be there. You couldn't pay me to miss it.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dallas White Rock Half Race Report


I have wanted to run this race since I was a little girl. White Rock Lake is very near to where I grew up, and I remember hearing about the race every year. What I'd really like to run is the full marathon, but I was happy to be able to participate in the half.

It was an interesting weekend. We drove up to my parents' on Friday after P got off from work. Spent the night on the farm, and like a whirlwind, were heading down to Dallas just after lunch the next day.

We went straight into town to pick up my packet at the convention center. Paid $10 for about 20 minutes of parking (not cool). I wasn't a huge fan of the layout of the expo, which like a brilliant store forced you to get lost among the goods and then to find your way out. We escaped with only one purchase, a 26.2 chrome thingy for P to give me for the Menace for x-mas, though.

Then headed to our hotel, the Hilton at Market Center. Nice hotel. Nice beds. Bring earplugs for the train lines. In a few years when the DART stops there, it'll be super nice for the marathon because you'll be able to ride directly into downtown. Got all checked in (long line, but free wifi to distract me), and headed to Ft. Worth to go to one of my oldest friend's birthday party.

At a brewery.

And that is how I became the designated driver of a SUBURBAN full of drunk people. In one of those parking lots that is only one way because the space between the sides is that tiny. Oh, and that was the first time I had ever driven a Suburban. Those fuckers are MASSIVE. But I safely delivered my cargo back to the birthday boy's house, and P and I headed back to our hotel. Around midnight.

Approximately 5 hours later the alarm went off.

I have never not wanted to run in a race so badly. I wasn't even sure I'd be running. I could break into a trot, the knee could scream, and I could be in for a 3:20 13.1 mile walk. I mean, that was very very likely. I was expecting it. And I was NOT in the mood for a 3 hour walk. At all.

But I spent money on the damn thing, so I got up, got dressed, agonized over whether to wear a jacket (would be too hot if I could run to have it, way too cold if I was walking to not have it), and eventually decided to wear it.

Oh, the race organizers didn't give out safety pins in the packet, so I was wearing my number on my race belt. Not my favorite, since I prefer to wear my race belt around my hips, so my leg was hitting my number with every step. I ended up wearing the belt around my waist. Ick.

Had P drive me to the American Airlines Center and drop me off. I was excited that we had access to it, that meant flush toilets, my favorite! But when I got inside, they had only given us access to the bottom level, and I swear, the mass of humanity was insane. Lines for each bathroom were stretching back to the next bathroom. I decided not to bother, and sat against a wall for half an hour just watching the people go by.

When I went out to line up, I was annoyed by the lack of signage. I got all the way to near the start line before finding out that I had to backtrack completely to get to my corral. Signs would have been helpful.

In my corral there was this girl/woman in FULL make-up. Mascara, eyeliner, eyeshadow, blush, lipstick, the whole deal. Getting ready to run. Only in Dallas.

The start was pretty cool. They had screens set up so we could see the pros start. Confetti still blowing when we got up there, and stands for the crowd. The start was definitely cool.

And then I was running. Actually running! I ran for about 15 minutes before my knee started hurting. So then I walked. I walked for a few minutes, and the knee didn't hurt any more. So I ran. I ran for another 15ish minutes before the knee started hurting, and thus the pattern for the running/walking was established. I ran until it hurt, then walked until it didn't. I ignored pace, time, etc, running and walking entirely on feel.

First aid station was already out of Gatorade when I got there.

I did lose a couple of minutes to a pit stop. Oh! I have to say: I have never been in a race where I've seen men peeing everywhere on everything. Until yesterday. And when I got into the portapotty line, I thought it'd be pretty clean, since there were only women in line (the men were all using the bushes), but no, there was no TP, and there was poop on the seat. Yuck! I probably lost almost 5 minutes to that stop, too.

And when the hell did Dallas get so hilly? I felt like I was running in Austin!!

This was by far the most beautiful course I've run. Most halfs take you through some nice, and some crappy areas. This one went only though beautiful neighborhoods. I was really impressed. And the last 5K on the Katy trail = great! By then I was doing more walking than running, so I had time to really appreciate it...

Towards the end, there, I realized I could go sub-2:40, which was 40 minutes faster than San Antonio, so I went for it. According to my Garmin, I made it: 2:39 and change. Not what I wanted, not what I would have wished for, but an improvement of 40 minutes in 4 weeks - I'll take it.

All in all, a good experience, but definitely not the best race I've done. Aid stations would be too far apart if it had gotten in the 70's as forecast (luckily stayed in the 50's). First aid station wasn't well stocked. There weren't enough portapotties, as evidenced by the mass man-peeing that was everywhere. And it was hilly. Oh, and the finisher's shirt doesn't say what you did: marathon, half, or relay. If that had been my marathon, I'd be PISSED about that! On the plus side, you got a long-sleeved T for signing up AND a finisher's shirt. The medal is nice. And the course really was quite beautiful.

I'm hella sore today. Not running for 6 weeks and then this - well, my muscles are speaking their displeasure. Loudly. And my knee is a little grumpy, I'm not gonna lie. I still don't think I re-injured it, but it is hard to tell through the soreness. We'll see in a day or two...

Monday, December 7, 2009

Running in a Winter Wonderland

Ok, well, to be honest, run/walking. With more walking than running.

So, on Friday, H-town was slated to get snow. My little weather bug in my iTouchy said 100%. Now, that takes balls. Any weather bug predicting *anything* 100% in Texas is a brave little mofo. But sure enough, it was right.

My area was one of the last to start snowing. I anxiously awaited the little white flakes while reading facebook statuses and twitter reports all morning about the heavy snow in other parts of town. You see, I wanted to go for a run in the snow.

Finally, around 12:30, I decided i couldn't wait any longer (due to my eating schedule), so I changed my clothes and got ready to run even though there was no snow yet. But when I walked outside, it was snowing!!!

I drove over to the little neighborhood crushed granite path because I wanted to try my Vibrams on it. I was the *only* person there. It was great! The snow kept coming down heavier and heavier while I laughed and ran and walked and chased snowflakes and tried to catch them on my tongue.

It was a beautiful run. It was a fun run. My knee didn't hurt at all, though my legs and feet were freezing!! (I wore 4 layers on top - it was about 30 degrees and I wore a compression shirt, long sleeved shirt, long sleeved shirt with built in mitten thingys, and windbreaker. I also wore a hat and gloves. My hands were toasty warm, as was my core. Only from the waist down was I cold. Probably could have easily gone with one less layer over core and hands if I was running the whole thing.) The Vibrams worked just fine on the crushed granite. Occasionally I'd feel something, but it was a totally run-able surface for me.

Sometimes you just need a fun run, you know? For a Texan, snow'll do it!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Vibrams, and a short run

So, I've been injured, right? And I was thinking: this has all happened since I got the new shoes. I was wearing Brooks Glycerin 5's, and loving everything. Then they killed that line, and I'm in Glycerin 7's, and first I think I have plantar fasciitis. Then I'm running a nice 11 miler, and boom, I have patellofemoral syndrome. All within a few months of switching shoes. What is up with that? How is that ok?

And I had been listening to Pheidippidations, where Steve Runner has been all high on barefoot running, and I was thinking, you know, at least my feet don't change once a year. If I ran barefoot, I wouldn't be playing Russian roulette annually with injuries to my legs. Then I read Born to Run. And I was sold. Screw you guys, I'm at least trying barefoot running.

Except that I'm a total wuss. I can't possibly run barefoot. I'm going to get a ginormous thorn in my foot or something and limp home.

But I had been reading about Vibram Five-Fingered shoes on running and tri blogs. They are supposed to give the "barefoot experience", but with a little protection. So Saturday I made the trip up to Luke's Locker to pick up a pair of Vibram Sprints.

They feel a little funny at first. I was embarassed as I tried to seperate my toes to each go into their own little pocket, but once I got them on, I rather liked them. I also figured, if they didn't work for running, they'd be great beach or water socks, or for wearing around the house/yard, or even transition wear before a tri. So what the hell, I bought them.

I put them on in the car and wore them home, then prevailed on Preston to go for a little run. Now, I am still injured, and this was my very first run back, annnnnd I was going to run in the Vibrams, so I did C25K Week 1, Day 1 to be completely safe. We walked over to the park so I could run in the grass along the bayou.

There was definitely an instant change in my gait. My heel strike migrated forward to more of a midfoot/forefoot strike. I was very aware of the ground. I could feel everything, the tiniest nuances of the terrain, the variations in the grass. At one point I noticed a strange vibration in my right toes, and when I looked down I had one of those giant pine needles in between my toes. It was grazing the ground even when my feet were in the air, so I was feeling the vibration. It felt kind of...amazing, actually.

At one point I looked down, and I was pushing a 7:30 pace. Effortlessly.

I was only running 1 minute at a time. The swimming is definitely keeping my cardio system in shape, because I wasn't winding at all. My knee didn't hurt at all... until the 6th minute of running.

But it was a start.

I didn't feel as sore as I expected yesterday. I keep reading that barefoot running will make you feel your muscles in different places. Make you sore. I felt a little in my calves, but nothing that would really qualify as sore. The knee didn't feel any worse that it normally (at least for the last 4 weeks) does, so I guess this is ok.

I'm going again this afternoon!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I normally have an aversion to doing a "thankfullness" review in my life on a day that is set by society. Also because thanks implies and object. To whom am I thankful? Being an athiest, I am rarely thankful in the broad sense required by Thanksgiving. However, I am appreciative of and for lots of things, every day. But for some reason, this year, I feel like I want to make a list. Maybe it is the lack of running. Maybe it is the people who might not be around next year at this time. Maybe I'm just being sentimental. No matter the reason buried in the depths of my twisted psyche, here it is.

I appreciate my Preston who is my partner in life. I am thankful to him for all the little things he does to make our lives better. And the big things too.

I appreciate my family, those by birth who I will miss today, and those by marriage. (Even those I do not like, because I know I can learn from them too.)

I appreciate my job, at which I am finally feeling (more) fulfilled and (more) happy.

I appreciate my kitties, because they are snuggly, loving, and warm, and because they remind me that life doesn't have to be so complicated.

I appreciate my body, even though it is currently a little bit broken, because it swims, bikes, and runs. I appreciate that change that happened imperceptibly in the past 2 years that makes me miss running when I can't, because I know now that I am fit and healthy.

These are not all the things that I appreciate. I appreciate my home, my friends, blue skies and twittering birds. I appreciate my life. And for my life, I can also be thankful: to my parents, and to myself for choosing to live it.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

In a woman's head, out loud

This morning as I was dressing after my swim, I heard the door to the locker room open, and a voice started moving towards me. I didn't think anything of it, just figured it was a woman walking/talking with a friend, until the lady got to the end of my row and I laid eyes on her.

She was alone.

I heard her say, "Let's see, it's 6:15 now, so I could start with cardio..." Her voice trailed off as she moved away from me, but make no mistake, she was still talking.

It reminded me of the movie "What Women Want" where Mel Gibson can suddenly hear what women are thinking. He goes to a park, having just discovered this, and is assailed by the thoughts of all the women around him, most of which sounded as mundane as what the woman this morning was saying. I think most, if not all, women are constantly thinking stuff like this. I know I am.

The difference is: the woman this morning was thinking out loud. Alone.

Creepy.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Facebook is the Devil

And perhaps an injury update.

I just saw that my estranged sister has a Facebook profile. I really don't know how I feel... scratch that, I feel strangely disgusted. Wtf? Is this shit normal?

On the injury front: I haven't run since the stupid injury. I went to an orthopedic doctor who said it is Patellofemoral syndrome. And to stay off it.

Well, I've stayed off it. But I'm pretty close to the end of my rope. I am running next week. Even if it is C25K D1W1, I'm freaking running. I can't stand it any more!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Rock n' Roll San Antonio Half "Race" Report

Or: The Time I Walked Every Flipping Step of a Freaking Half

On my doctor's orders. And my mother's. And my husband's.

And it still wasn't the most brilliant thing I've ever done.

I had some serious mental issues heading into this one. I felt embarassed to be walking. I didn't want to walk. I thought about pulling out. But mi madre raised me to pinch the pennies, and the thing was paid for. I was damn well going to participate, no matter how ashamed I felt.

So, P and I drove to San Antonio on Saturday morning. Stopped at Buc-ee's on the way (love that place), and there were running shirts all over the place. I was wearing my Houston Marathon finishers' shirt, and I was getting nods and compliments. It was awesome! It was like the entire Houston running scene packed up for a road trip to SA for the weekend.

Went straight to the Expo, which was just like last year's. They gave out Tech-T's this year! And they had my size! Bought one of those race belts with the "fanny pack" made out of stretchy material. P thought it was too expensive at $20, but I wanted to try it out as I have never been truly happy with my carrying-stuff methods.

Then headed over to JaMIL's house to stay. She made some yummy spaghetti for dinner.

Woke up at 4:45 the next morning. Left at 5:30 for P to take me to the shuttle at the AT&T Center. Was on a shuttle by 6:30, and at the race start before 7. Stood in line for porta-john until about 7:35 (with the race starting at 7:30). Wasn't worried, though, because I knew I was starting so far back that it'd take almost an hour for me to get to the start line.

I was originally going for a 2:10 finish, which would have been a PR, and had me starting in Corral 13. I ended up starting in Corral 31. Lame.

Turned out that I was correct: my corral started just after 8:30. A lot of people in my corral were walking, which was somewhat comforting to me. I started walking with a goal of 15ish minute miles, without really having any idea what I could actually accomplish.

15 minute miles are almost exactly what I could accomplish, as a matter of fact. And so I walked. I walked past the Alamo. About 5 miles in, I started getting sore (including the bum knee), and was grateful for the long-ass shitty hill that I hated last year when I was running. And then down the other side. About 7 miles in I was concerned that I was hurting my knee by continuing to participate, so I called P. He couldn't hear me, and therefore couldn't rescue me, so I kept walking. Being pissed off at P gave me some energy for the walking. I took a cup of Cytomax and a cup of water at every aid station. I took a gel at 5 and 9 like I would if I was running. I learned something, though: if walking a half, you can eat more before hand. I was freaking starving from about 4 miles on - I had only had some toast for breakfast, as if I was running. I walked and walked and walked some more. I discovered that walking a Half is just as painful as running the Half, only it takes a hell of a lot longer. The marathoners joined up with us at about 11 miles. I was walking the Half in a decent marathon time. It was hot, and many looked to be struggling, but they were still running. I saw a guy with a shirt that said he was training for IM Cozumel in 2 weeks. Now that dude is hardcore. Running a 3:20ish marathon two weeks out from an Ironman. He really was freaking iron. Visited portajohn around 11. At least I know I hydrated sufficiently for the heat. Walked up that bitch of a hill to the Alamodome and was done. 3:20ish.

Got my medal, took one of every food item, found P and JaMIL, and got the heck out of there.

Knee is pissed. Right ankle is pissed. And walking a Half is something I hope I never have to do again, but may be doing in 3 weeks in Dallas.

That is all.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Memories

I have a 5 day weekend this week.

I decided to use some of my time productively by going through the 12 or so boxes that my parents have brought down on their past several visits. They've been sitting along the wall in my living room for months.

When I was growing up, every year my mom would put a cardboard box in the second closet in the middle bedroom, which we used as an office. That closet always smelled like mothballs. In addition to the box, it held the winter coats for most of the year, and at the top my Dad's extensive collection of back issues of Playboy. The trapdoor to get into the crawlspace under the house was under my box.

Mom would label the box with the year and whatever grade I was in, and every week when I bought home my "Tuesday Envelope" with all my work in it, she'd put it all into the box. Some years needed two boxes. As I got older, the box became more like a locker dump once a year, or once a semester, but there was still always a box.

Now my parents are trying to clean out their house, their attic, their barn, and my Mom is passing along my memories to me. I mostly wish that she had just saved a representative sample, but sometimes I am grateful that everything went into the box.

I found a note from my Dad on a post-it. My Dad worked in a factory on rotating shifts. 2 weeks day, 2 weeks evening, 2 weeks night. On evening shift we didn't see him at all. On night shift we only saw him as he was leaving. It was clearly during an evening shift time, and he apologized for being there for something... I've already forgotten the details, but it went into the one box of amalgamated stuff that I'm still going to save, this proof of how difficult it sometimes was to have a Dad that wasn't always there, for both of us.

There are cards for my birthdays from my grandparents who are gone. Saved.

There are notes from my friends. Saved.

There are good tests and bad tests. Some of each: saved. I started sucking in math around 6th grade, and I saved proof.

I saved a bit of homework from 5th grade that was clearly written with my left hand while my right arm was in a cast. From that year I also saved a doodle in which I said I hated myself. Proof that my tendency towards depression has been with me for a very long time.

I saved the printout of the Presidential Physical Fitness challenge results, also from 5th grade. I was 4'8", weighed 70 lbs, and failed the one mile run test, running it is 13 minutes 47 seconds. I saved that one to prove how far I've come.

Mom also brought some boxes of my grandparents' stuff that has been stored out in the shed. I pulled this beat up, scratched up, old, blue tin out of a box, wondering if Mom really thought I wanted this. I opened the tin, and the smell of Granny's house drifted up. It was filled with mostly sewing stuff, so I knew why Mom thought I'd want it. But you know what else I found? Granny's Weight Watcher's card from 1981, the year I was born. Her goal weight was 150 pounds (she was 5'9"), and her weight went up and down like a yoyo. I saved that card as proof that some battles are hereditary.

I still can't run. I have another doctor's appointment tomorrow. I am trying to take this time to become a better swimmer, refocus on my diet, do core and upper body strength work, so that when I can run again, my cardiovascular fitness will not have suffered, and hopefully I can come back even stronger than before. But let's face it: not running is driving me crazy.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Scabs and granola

In attempt to deal with my "injury", I'm staying away from running. (Yes, the knee still hurts. No, I haven't gone to the doc, but I think I may break soon and make an appt.)

In an effort not to balloon to the size of a whale while I can't run, I'm focusing on any type of exercise that doesn't disturb my knee. So far:
Monday: core
Tuesday: swim, 1 hour
Wednesday: bike, 30 minutes

Not sure the knee liked the bike. It didn't hurt while I was on the thing, but seems a little grumpy now.

Blasted knee.

Oh, and the chafe scabs on my ass itch. And my granola bar sharted chocolate all over my lap. Happy freaking hump day.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Injured

When I started off my 11 miler with Fit on Saturday it was about 45 degrees. I was cold. I started running, and my right leg felt a little twingy, but I couldn't feel much because of the cold, and I figured I was just warming up and it'd work itself out.

By 5 miles in, I knew something was wrong, but I was still running alright.

Soon after, we hit the hills. My injury doesn't like hills (apparently). A searing pain was shooting from knee to hip with every step. I have never been more grateful for walk breaks in my life. Not even in the marathon. By this point, though, I was halfway into the run. Turing back would have been just as far as going forward, so I kept running.

At mile 8, I got separated from my group at an intersection. I tried to stretch. Stretching hurt.

When I started running again, it was clear to me that I was on my last leg, literally. I stopped at 8.25, for good, and started the long walk home.

Shortly thereafter, a group ran by. They asked how I was, and I told the truth. We figured out how I could cut maybe a mile off the run, and one lady asked me if I'd like her to double back and check on me after she learned that I couldn't call anyone (because P was at work). I said yes, please! I was feeling kinda scared, and a lot of defeated.

And so I walked. I was cold, since I wasn't running any more. But I kept walking. I walked past a lake that had steam rising in the cold. The sun was shining and it was beautiful. I walked over a little wooden bridge. I walked past a bigger lake where there was a big blue heron silhouetted in the rising sun. He was beautiful. There is also a dam where I've always wanted to take pictured because the egrets stand in the rushing water. They were beautiful.

Soon after, I saw another member of Fit, not dressed out, walking towards me. They had sent him to pick me up, and he gave me a ride back.

I spent the rest of the day resting, stretching, icing, taking ibuprofen, etc. The radiating pain from the hip stopped on Sunday, but the knee is still clearly screwed up. It hurts *behind* the knee. Like, actually on the back of my leg. Especially when going down stairs...

UGH!!!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Houston Half Race Report

A.K.A. Worst. Half. EVAR.

Not the race or the organization or anything. Just for me. This seriously sucked.

I got sick on Thursday after the 10 Miler. I had actually been running at an elevated body temp since Monday after the 10 miler, but I didn't feel bad until Thursday. When I started feeling like absolute shit. Then I started running around a 100 degree fever. I basically layed around all weekend, totally skipping my long run on Saturday.

Came back to work, and running, on Monday, but still not feeling 100%. Really not even feeling 50%. I never went to the doctor, but Preston got sick the next week, and his doc thinks we had the "dreaded" H1N1. That actually wouldn't surprise me, since what I had was worse than a cold, but better than the flu.

Annyways, I slowly felt better all week leading up to the Half. I ran 3 on Monday, 6 on Tuesday, and then unfortunately skipped Thursday due to pounding rain. I thought about making it up witha short 3 on Friday, but then figured the rest coming off the sickness would do me good.

Now, to the race report.

I got downtown in plenty of time this year, and headed over to the start line. The temp at my house was a pleasant-for-running 55, but downtown it was closer to 65. Mistake 1: wore capri tights instead of shorts.

I headed to the portacans. I have to compliment the organization at this race: there were extra packages of toilet paper outside every 3rd or 4th can, and I actually saw volunteers later arriving with further toilet paper reinforcements!

With about 10 minutes to go, I lined up. I thought the finish line was the start line, so I moved back and back.

Turns out that the start line was past the finish line, so I started waaaaaay too far back. Mistake 2. I passed *hundreds* of people in the first 2 miles, even though I was only running a 10:30ish pace.

I bypassed the first aid station which is only about half a mile into the race, but I diligently walked through every remaining aid station, always choosing Gatorade, except at 5 and 9 when I took a Honey Stinger with water.

I felt like crap from the very beginning. That 10:30 pace that was passing so many people didn't feel easy to me as it should have. I comforted myself that I didn't feel that great in the Ten for Texas, but after 2 I felt awesome.

So I kept gutting it out, running, walking only the aid stations. But I never felt any better.

I finished the first loop in that fashion and headed out for the second. Sometime around 6 miles I looked down and realized I had been running for an hour! Shortly after that I passed the 10K mark (1:02ish), and then soon after that, the halfway point/relay handoff. 1:06ish. I was on PR pace if I could keep it up or negative split, but I knew then that there would be no PR. I was already tanking at the halfway point. As I ran by it I jealously thought of my friend who was only running the relay. I kept running because of the crowd, but as soon as I rounded the apex of the loop and turned for home a second time, I was taking my first unauthorized walk break.

From there, it is a story of more and more walking, and less and less running.

Saw Preston on my way out on the 3rd loop. Told him I felt like crap, and he said, well, just walk if you have to.

Have to I did, and walk I did. A lot.

Final time: 2:31:23
First half: 1:09:10
Second half: 1:22:14

I want to talk about how I felt, and why. I felt awful, put simply. I felt slow. I felt like you feel when you sprint, and you reach your breaking point, and you simply have to slow down. Only I wasn't sprinting. I felt like my chest was tight, like I couldn't breathe as deeply as I usually do. I felt hot. I felt tired. I felt like there were entirely too many hills. I felt like I wanted to quit.

I didn't quit. I am calling it a "good mental training day". But I am bothered by the whole thing. I can't identify one cause or a major cause for this terrible performance. The only thing I can think of is that it was a combination of the heat, the hills, my clothing, my sickness...? Whatever it was, it was super lame.

And to add injury to insult, I chafed. On my ass.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

10 for Texas Race Report

I don't really think my training has been going that well, and I think I've got plantar fasciitis in my right foot, so I really really didn't know what to expect from this race. I was hoping for a PR - my 10 mile PR is 1:39:48 from USA Space City 10 miler last year, but I really wasn't sure I could pull it off. To top it off, I didn't really feel like I was racing. I didn't get super nervous, Preston wasn't coming with me... I just really didn't know what to expect.

Last night I finally decided my strategy was, since this was a 'C' race for me, was just go go out relatively hard (defined as sub-10's), hold it for as long as possible, and if I had anything left after 7, to kick it to the end. I wanted to talk only aid stations.

The weather this week has been miserable. I'm talking 80 degree temps with 90% humidity at 4am. All week. It has truly sucked. But the weatherman promised a cool front yesterday, and he freaking delivered! It got down into the upper 50's last night! So this run was literally going to be over 20 degrees cooler than my last run!

This did present me with a bit of a dilemma. I had set out my standard black shorts, black sleeveless running top ensemble for this race, but I was a bit worried about being cold. I was temped to run in my capri running tights for a little extra warmth, but also for chafe-protection and the nifty zipper pocket that could hold my gel. I decided to go for the capris, again on the justification that this race isn't really that important to me, so if I blow up, no biggie. Also, if it worked out, I'd know for the rest of the season, and that reason, if any, was good enough for me. After that, I did a totally girlie thing. I got those tights on and was displeased with my black sleeveless top because it wasn't quite long enough. I felt like my ass was displayed for the entire world to see in those tights. So, I decided to run in my Woodlands Fit tech tee from last year. The only time I've run in it before, I disliked it. I felt like it didn't let my body heat escape as well as my other technical clothing. This morning I thought that might be an advantage.

So, after all that, off I went.

Got there and parked with about 45 minutes to go, and headed for a restroom. Porta-john lines were long, and I wasn't about to use that when I knew that the Market Street flush toilets would be open. This was almost a mistake. I got in line at 6:58, and it was only maybe 20 people long. I finally got in at 7:25 with only 5 minutes left to the start! Women need to hurry the hell up in the restroom, and Market Street employees need to wait until after the 7:30 start to clean the thing. That's all I have to say about that.

With all that I was a little frazzled getting into the corral, and still completely uncertain as to what to expect.

The gun went off, and off we went.

I was cold. My muscles were cold. I just kept moving, knowing that I'd warm up after a mile or so. I picked a good line-up point, as I was passing about as much as I was being passed. Was super-annoyed at the 2 walkers that I had to skirt - seriously, start at the back if you are a walker! At almost exactly 1.25 miles, I got warm, and started feeling really pretty decent. My right knee has a giant bruise that I felt tweak a couple of times, but I didn't hear from my gimpy right foot at all. Before I knew it, I was up to the first aid station.

I've gotta address the aid stations. The first 2, specifically. There was no gatorade at all at the first one, and the water wasn't coming fast enough. At the second, there was gatorade, but nothing was coming fast enough, so after standing around for almost a minute (!), I finally grabbed a cup of water and kept going, though I really felt I needed Gatorade.

Mentally I was doing really well. I decided to mark my progress with respect to the aid stations. Every aid station represented a walk break, and the race could be 5 2 mile races.

At mile 5 they had a timer for us to cross. By my Garmin, I was 50 minutes and some seconds in. I was a little disappointed in that. I felt like I should have been sub-50. But I was still feeling good, so I was still hoping for the PR, though that meant I'd have to negative split the race to do it. (Something I don't think I've ever managed to do.)

At the 3rd aid station I took a gel, with yet more water. I still felt really good.

At mile 7, I looked down and realized I was 7 miles in and couldn't believe that I still felt so good. I mean, no pain. None at all. And still running strong 9:30's. This was the point where I said I'd kick it if I had anything left. I did have some left, so I started trying to run just a hint stronger.

Mile 7.5 was where the first bit of pain started. Right leg and butt. Nothing unmanageable, and certainly not unexpected. I just hoped it wouldn't slow me down!

Mile 8 aid station I finally got some gatorade!! I walked a bit farther than I had before, then really set out to kick it to the end. Only 2 miles to go. I looked at my Garmin and knew that I had a PR. I was at 1:08. Even if I slowed to 10 minute miles, I'd PR. This thrilled me. I sped up.

Mile 9, and we were hitting that bitch bridge that goes over Lake Woodlands. I was determined to run up it. It would NOT slow me down.

There was a surprise aid station on that bridge, so I grabbed another quick cup of gatorade with a quick walk to drink it, and then ran the rest of the way up that bitch.

Less than a mile, less than a mile, faster, faster, and I finally saw Market Street. People were lining the last bit, yelling that there were only 100 yards left (you still couldn't see the finish line here) and to kick it. I turned it on. I mean, really kicked it. I was passing people right and left! I could not believe that I was actually kicking it to the finish of a 10 miler. With a new PR. And not feeling like shit. It was fucking awesome. Totally rocked. Even the gun time was a PR for me.

I still don't have the official times, but here it is, according to Garmin:

Mile 1: 9:54
Mile 2: 9:37 (aid station)
Mile 3: 9:36
Mile 4: 9:36
Mile 5: 9:56 (aid station)
Mile 6: 9:27
Mile 7: 9:41 (aid station)
Mile 8: 9:21 (!!!!)
Mile 9: 9:31 (aid station)
Mile 10: 9:20 (aid station) (!!!!!)
Last little bit: :30

Total: 1:36:33

That's a 3 minute, 15 second PR at the distance. And something like a 3 minute negative split.

Seriously! Best. Long. Race. EVAR!!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

12er, but...

Ran 12.5 miles this morning. Pleased, since I know now I'm up to finishing a half. Now I can try to get faster.

But that isn't what has really been on my mind today.

I believe that it is a person's experiences that make us who we are. For me, my experiences are usually tied inextricably with people. Strange, since I don't have a lot of friends. Strange that people would matter so much to me. Or perhaps not strange. Since there are so few people in my life, perhaps it makes sense that they should mean more to me.

All I know is that the other day when I was cleaning I found a note from someone who used to matter to me, and my heart jumped into my throat. Still, after all this time. That I sit around hurt that a former friend doesn't friend me on Facebook... I guess they really are former. (And Facebook is the devil!)

I think I am a hard person to love, whether it be in a lover way or a friendly way. I think I must push people away. I love too hard, care too much, and I'm not the easiest person to be around. I'm moody. I have a terrible temper. Tendencies towards depression. I don't have an emotion in my body that is half-assed. I've driven away everyone I ever loved except Preston and my family. And I know it has been a struggle for Preston and my family more than once. Hell, it is probably an ongoing struggle for them. One that I am grateful they do not abandon.

It just fucking sucks, you know? That I sit here on this end of the computer still caring, and people that I care about sit over there having forgotten me. Lives better without me.

If I really loved them, I'd be happy if they were better off without me.

Perhaps I never loved them at all.

But can't I have happy memories that aren't tinged with sadness for the people I've lost? Can't I go to my high school reunion expecting fun? I can't. That is the answer. I still feel too strongly for too many people. I'd just make an ass of myself.

I don't know what has gotten into me. I'm going to quit now. Quit feeling sorry for myself. Go downstairs and watch Star Trek and wait for my loving husband to get home from work.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Recovery

Well, last week I was sick practically all week. Had a fever for 7 straight days. It really sucked. It also really sucked because I was anxious about not running. I even skipped my long run on Saturday because I knew I couldn't get through it.

Sunday night I was determined to run on Monday morning, fever or not. As luck would have it, that was the first day I was feverless. I ran 3 easy slow miles, just trying to remember that I *could* run.

Tuesday was a scheduled speedwork day, and I really wanted to do it. I was seriously fatigued when I woke up. I ran a very slow 1.5 mile warm-up, and then did the 10x30sec/30sec that I had planned. It went pretty well. I was able to maintain a fast pace through the intervals. I jogged every other rest interval, and walked every other one. I still totaled out only around 3 miles.

I have had a slight bit of heel pain since Tuesday...

Wednesday I biked for 30 minutes easy to give myself time off my feet.

Thursday was supposed to be a 35 minute tempo run. I did 30 minutes. It was the first morning where I could really tell that the (slightly) cooler temp was really helping me. It was about 70 degrees, and I was running 9:30's when I felt like I was running 10+s. It was nice.

I also got off work early yesterday, so I went swimming. Swam 2400 yards in about an hour. Did a nice 500 to warm up, 500 steady, 500 hard, 500 steady, and 400 cooldown. My arms are totally blown today, but in a very good way. I've really missed swimming. And how incredibly cool to not be there when it is all crowded in the morning!! I think I'll have to make that my regular gig when I get off work early.

I was freaking starving by the time I got home. Ate about 1000 calories and was still hungry! I forget how much swimming takes out of me...

Slept 11 hours last night, and still feeling slightly fatigued. Taking it easy today, because I've got 12 miles to run in the morning...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

A Quote, in absence of a substantive post

I'll all kinds of sick, have been for 4 days, am finally going to the doc today, and haven't run since Sunday, thus, no blogging.

In absence of a real blog post, I give you these words that I copied out of a diary before I left my old position:

The most insignificant, obscure life is worthy of record. [snip] The diary grows more interesting as the years multiply - particularly to the one who writes the entries therein. Oh! How old memories spring up like a flock of birds, when the yellow, age-stained pages of an old diary are turned, and the daily records of the long forgotten past glide ghost-like by us. We can detect a look of reproach in the faces of some, for evil deeds committed, or duties neglected, that shall forever remain undone - haunting phantoms of the vanished years; and in the starlike eyes that illumine other countenances, we catch the love token flashed to us, which bid us to become not weary in well doing, because in due season we shall reap if we faint not.
How fresh those paragraphs read, as tho' written but yesterday! They tell of our daily doings, and the doings of precious loved ones - long ago laid in the grave - whose memory lingers like the fragrance of a lovely flower. Can it be that they are gone? The diary summons them once more into our presence and we are young again.
--John E. T. Milsaps, diarist

And I couldn't say it better myself.

Friday, September 4, 2009

First week in a new job = Done

And honestly, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be in a lot of ways. But, it was way more tiring/overwhelming than I thought it would be in others. That's ok, though. It isn't anything that I can't handle, and I think ultimately I really did make the right choice, and this first week proved it, at least to me.

(I just looked down and the shirt I'm wearing is inside out. Thank goodness I'm at home!)

New job is having an effect on the running because I've returned to earlier hours, so I'm trying to get my morning schedule all worked out. I didn't do all the minutes/miles called for by the WFit full schedule, but I don't feel terrble about it when I look at the half schedule and see that I'm still doing waaaay more than they are. (Which I should be: they are training to run a Half in January. I start my 6 months of Halfs next month!)

The other thing re: running is my lack of motivation. I'm not having any trouble rolling out of bed every morning that a run is scheduled and going for it, but I'm not exactly looking forward to it either. Especially the weekend long runs. Last week was supposed to be a cutback week, and the weekend long run was only supposed to be 6 miles. I was PISSED when it was 7 miles. I mean seriously ticked off. Why would you do that on a cutback week?? (The moral of the story is that I don't think I'd have been so mad if I was more into it right now!)

I am gifted by the most beautiful sights on my runs lately: a lightening storm on the horizon, a startled buck crossing my path, a shooting star. But still I am having to force myself out the door.... I think it is just a case of the summer doldrums... the weather is so hot and nasty for running, and it makes me so slow and feel soooo lethargic. At least, that's what I'm telling myself. I just need to struggle through, for now.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

More Dreams

Last night I dreamt that I was in a running race. We had to run laps around this giant building complex-thing, complete with stairs and hallways and turns, etc. First we ran 3 laps, then waited for everyone to come back. Then two laps of a different course, then waited again. Then one lap of yet another course. On this one, I was in first place among the females (this is how we know it is a dream), so they put me in front with the lead male. There was one other guy faster than me, so I let him in front of me too, saying that there was no reason not to start in order of actual ability. I really wanted him in front of me because I was afraid of getting lost on the course!! This lap had tons of stairs, and there was a section where the stairs met (like a V shape), and we had to run up and down that part several times. Then, at the end, we ended up in this gym where there was a list of exercises that we had to finish. I started out with squats, but by the time I got to 20, my quads were killing me, and I needed to get to 100! So I wanted to try an arm exercise to give my quads a break, but I couldn't figure out how to work the machine. So I decided to do some core exercises, but they didn't have standard names, so the list of what I had to do referred me to this magazine that had pictures, but I couldn't find the thing! Finally I decided to go for squats again, but my legs gave out just before I got to 40. Then I woke up.

The funny thing is that I'm not even preparing for a race right now!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Kalla

Actual conversation between Preston and his co-worker:

CW: Mega lame. Kalla.
P: Mwahahaha. Rebar fool. In the middle.
CW: Move it over.
P: Perhaps. Just a minute.
CW: Hurry up mufuka! Ur kalla me!
P: This program kalla me big time. It won't even shut down now. It's just frozen.
CW: Mega kalla moonstar!
P: That comatorium album is super killer isn't it?
CW: So far yup! Haven't listened to it all but super mega kalla soooooo far!
P: It loses my attention at the end but it's almost all mega kalla. Like controlled mayhem.
CW: I would love to listen to them on lsd! Scare the shit out of me walk on the blade you know? No attention needed just close ur eyes and kalla! I'm out there meow! U don't know this.

I can't make this shit up.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

7 Miles and home to no AC

Ironically, the 7 didn't hurt too badly, probably because I didn't run with WFit, so I was going super-slow.

But it was hot out there, and since the AC was broken, it was equally hot in the house afterwards.

After suffering though a day of hot, though, I have a brand-spanking-new AC unit, both outside and in, and it is beautiful and quiet and awesome.

Annnnd, I have a new route! I've always wondered where this one street that I run by goes, so today I followed it. I still can't picture the map in my head, but somehow it takes me back around to this creek that I used to run along side, which leads me back towards home. I can add the thing into my regular route for a 3.5 mile loop. (Or add it as part of a longer route, like today.) When I finished that loop today, I headed over to the park for a mile or two in crushed granite for different stresses on my legs.

Good run! Good new AC!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Promotion

I am getting a promotion to go manage a different department from the one I currently work in.

I don't often talk about work on here, and I will continue to be silent on such topics, but suffice to say that I am going to really miss both the team of people and the materials that I currently work with. And I know that I am going into a challenging and likely stressful situation. I am not without reservations, but ultimately I think I am making the right move for myself.

That is what is on my mind right now, every free moment I have, and every night as I try to sleep.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Progressive Tempo Run

I started off this hot, humid morning just to run for 40 minutes or so. And to throw in something tough to the run, but tough is relative to how I feel on a given day, so I wasn't sure what, yet.

I'm not following the WFit Yellow Marathon schedule exactly, but I'm not running a marathon, so I figure it is ok. The schedule called for a 50 minute hill run. I figured 40 minutes with "something hard" would be sufficient.

So I ran my first mile slow, as usual in this weather. 11-something. But I felt pretty good, like I could go faster, and I had this brilliant idea for a progressive tempo run. Last week when I tried for a straight-up tempo run, I was toast after 1 mile at tempo, so I thought this might be a better way to go a little faster for a little longer. So at 1 mile, I upped the tempo with the goal of making mile 2 10-something. Success! Then upped the goal to 9-something for mile 3. Again, success! Then I just ran as hard as I could for the last half mile, but I was pretty toasty by then, so I reckon it was still 9-something average, though I did make a nice low 8-something for the final sprint.

All in all, I ran the exact same 3.5ish mile route as yesterday about 5 minutes faster than yesterday. Pretty satisfying.

But then I had 5 minutes to go before I got in my self-prescribed 40 minutes, so I did some drills.

Now my legs are so fried that I could hardly make it up the stairs at work, but that's actually pretty cool, you know?

Monday, August 10, 2009

RIP, Garmin Data

My loving husband decided to install Windows 7 on our computer. Without backing up a year-and-a-half of Garmin data.

My splits from my first marathon? Gone.

The record of my 5K PR? Erased.

And yet this morning I strapped the old guy on anyways, to start creating new data.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Tough 6

I ran a tough 6 miler this morning with Woodlands Fit.

It was cooler than last week, a bit, but I struggled just as mightily, regretting the whole time the late night and junk food the night before. (Astros game - sure had fun, though!)

For the first 3 or so miles, I kept thinking I should just turn around. Even though it would have been almost as far back as I had left to go, I couldn't bring myself to trust that the course was only 6 miles. And I was near the back of the pack, and I kept thinking that I was going to get lost. Always a concern form me in the Woodlands, but for some reason I was obsessed with it this morning. It was gnawing at the back of my head, telling me to turn around. (Not to stop running, mind you, just to turn around and go back a way that I was sure of.) It was really odd.

Finally at 3.37 miles in, I realized that turning back now would mean a farther journey home. I was committed. At the 4 mile water stop, I asked for someone to tell me what turns were left in the route, to ease my mind. There was only one.

With the route certain, my mind went back to the junk food, and how crappy I felt. I kept making deals with myself: I could run as slow as I wanted, but no walking; I'd run to 60 minutes, then I could walk. But then that was almost 6 miles, so I'd run to 6 miles. Then that was almost back to base, so I finished the thing out.

I am proud of myself for fighting. Proud of myself for finishing what was probably one of the most difficult 6 mile runs I've ever done. Proud of myself for not walking, and not turning around, and not letting my head get the better of me. I hope I learned something today, and not just that I need sleep and good food, but that I am mentally stronger than I give myself credit for.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Strange Uplifted Mood

This morning, P was out-of-sorts.

My boss is bitchy.

My run was terrible. (Hot, slow, etc.)

We are talking about very serious and depressing financial stuff at work.

And yet, I feel great! I feel positive, uplifted, happy, funny... I am in a good mood.

This is worth blogging about because it is so very abnormal. I've often wondered if I am something of an empath. When the people around me are down, I'm down. That means I spend more time down than up, usually.

But seriously, this is like someone spiked my coffee. I feel great!!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Cubist Dreams

Last night I had this dream again. I say again, though the dream is never the same, the complication is always the same: I cannot focus my eyes. I close my eyes to sleep or blink, and when I open them, all I see is flashed of bright colors, pieces of the scene I'm trying to see. It is like dreaming a Picasso or Braque during their analytical cubist period, only the colors are so bright, and I only see one piece of the painting at a time. My mind creates the distorted painting in an attempt to meld the pieces together.

Always I'm desperately trying to make out the scene. I open my eyes once, twice. I close them and try to focus on the back of my eyelids before I open them a third time. The scene is in focus, then slides back out.

The story line, I believe, is unimportant. This time, I walked over to the closet in the house where I grew up. It was a tiny thing, but it had deep shelves on either side of the doorway, and when I was a child I made a "reading nest" of pillows and blankets on the floor, and I'd go in there and feel safe and hidden in my little space with a shelf over my head and one over my feet. Anyways, in the dream, I opened this closet door, only in the dream, people from my job had sleeping places in there, like bunks. I think I was trying to do something nice for them, because they are the team working on the inventory, so I was trying to hang artwork, mostly Escher, but also a few other pieces that I didn't recognize (either in the dream or in real life).

Always through the task I'm trying to "see straight". I never do.

I should also mention that the cubist sight hurts. Like when you put on someone's glasses that are too strong for you. I close my eyes against the pain, and try to focus again. There is also a low level of emotional panic and struggle that underlies the dream.

I always wake up from these dreams feeling exhausted. I never remember having one before this year, but I can think of three times relatively recently when I've dreamt in cubism.

I just chase my tail when I try to interpret the thing. The storyline is easy to make sense of. But the cubism? Am I focusing too hard on the little things, or not hard enough? Is my view of the world distorted? Have I forgotten the big picture, or am I just incapable of seeing it? Or is a sight interpretation too literal? Is it about the struggle? Overcoming the panic? A message to stop fighting the current and go with things the way they are?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

You know those weeks?

You know those weeks where every day feels like it should be Thursday?

This is one of them. Thank goodness tomorrow actually *is* Thursday.

Monday, July 27, 2009

On politics, and kids, and open-mindedness

I just finished an insanely hot, sweaty, miserable 35 minute run. But that isn't what I want to talk about today.

I went to Saturday's Astros game with Preston and probably our best couple-friends. They have two beautiful kids, and the wife, let's call her "Tina" (not her real name), was talking about how they need to go to the Alamo soon so that her son can see it for the first time. She was born and raised out-of-state, and she was telling me about how she saw the imax movie about the Alamo and how special it made the experience for her. As a non-Texan, she didn't understand before she saw the movie. I mean, the Texans lost, right?

All of that led her to say that they didn't even really cover the Civil War in school in the state where she grew up. That up there, they think all of it was about slavery. And that they are all Democrats.

This is where she lost me. I mean, the jump from Texas Independence to the Civil War was huge, but she was using it to make the point that if that state didn't care about the Civil War, then they surely didn't care about Texas. I got that. But that they were all Democrats??? Now, I'm not declaring allegiance to one political party or the other. Ever. I consider myself an independent thinker, and I vote for whomever I believe to be the best candidate for the job. So, with that full disclosure out of the way, does she honestly believe that Democrats don't believe in history? Or teach a biased view of history? Or believe the Civil War was only about slavery? Or don't care about Texas?? I had no words. I continue to have no words.

But I was thinking about it on my run, and it made me really sad, because I believe that that is how kids become biased. How many times do her kids need to hear their mom make a disparaging remark about Democrats before they blindly hate Democrats too? Or bend their political beliefs to the Republican party because "Democrats are bad"? (This, of course, is completely applicable the other way around for parents who make comments about Republicans.)

This brings home several points, not the least of which is remembering how impressionable little minds are. But also, where do we get off judging people based on the group they are in and not on the person who is standing in front of us? Stereotypes such as these seem to me to be the root of all hatred.

I love Tina, and I kept my mouth closed in the interest of our friendship. Just as I kept my mouth closed on a run last year where a Democrat and Republican got into it (civilly, but in a no-win argument) over the presidential election. But I wish I had the words. I wish I had the stones to say what I really think.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

You know it is hot when...

77 degrees at 5am feels *noticeably cooler*.

I have been a good girl so far this week. I was careful to not set my expectations too high: no hour-and-a-half workouts before work for me. Just whatever my Woodlands Fit marathon training schedule (though I'm not training for a marathon) says, and on the days it says OFF, 30 minutes of anything I want, as long as it is something. On Wednesday that was biking. I expect on Friday it might be swimming. Or lifting. Or core. Or maybe some DDR... Ah, the possibilities! Not training for triathlon can actually be quite liberating.

21 days to a habit all over again. Hang the fatigue. A habit can carry me though whatever crap life brings on.

Now, I need a hair cut. And can someone tell me when the jet lag will ease up??

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wimbledon Windmilers 10K Race Report

So, I arrived in London less than 24 hours before the start of this race, which was later than your standard USA race at 9am. So it is safe to say that I was a bit jet-lagged. My Londoner friend also greeted us off the plane with an apology for the "heat". It was warm that morning (the warmest of the entire trip, I'm convinced)... probably high 70's. While that is nothing compared with the Texas heat I've been dealing with, it is still too hot for a race, at least one longer than 3 miles, in my opinion. (And I actually laughed out loud at my friend for calling 80 a heat wave. She used to live in Texas!!!)

The race was fairly small, with less of everything than we are used to in the USA. There were just a few tents set up on the heath, and runners sitting/standing/stretching around until about 5 minutes before the start when we all tromped over to stand behind an imaginary line. There was no chip timing for this race. Presumably someone near the front said, "Go!", and we were off.
We ran by the most picturesque pub with whitewashed walls and wooden beams and beautiful hanging baskets filled with colorful flowers, then farther up the road the windmill for which the running club is named with horses in the adjoining fields. Then we went off road onto nice gravel paths that circled the park for the remainder of the race.
Of course I forgot my Garmin, so I was running on feel. To make it worse, they (again, of course, but I didn't think of it ahead of time) mark their distances in kilometers, so I was trying to do some quick mental math to figure out what my pace was. I ended up realizing, again, stupidly late, that anything under 6 minutes per k would do if I wanted to finish in sub-10 minute miles. (That's why they use the metric system over there - it really is easier!!) Sub-10s were about the best I felt like I could hope for with the temperature and the jet-lag.
After we went off road we ran into what really looked like a primevial forest. Giant trees with their canopies blocking almost all of the light. Everything so very green. Huge green ferns covering the ground. It was absolutely lovely. At one point we ran by a stone and brick wall that was obviously old and patched up and I wished for my camera.
The course was two loops. As I was nearing the end of the first, there was a light rain shower that felt wonderful. As I passed Preston he called out that I was about 30 minutes in. Exactly as I expected. I tossed him my sunglasses and headed out for a second loop, stopping at the only water station on my way back out. That is one thing that I would change. In that heat, there needed to be more than one water station. I was parched!!
The second loop was much like the first, except for me wishing that it was a 5K race and I was already done!
I gave it everything I had to run to the end, where I received a little backpack for a finisher's prize. That was another difference: you didn't get a goodie-bag at the beginning, you got it when you finished. And there were far fewer coupons etc in the thing.
Afterwards Preston bought me a Wimbledon Windmilers technical t-shirt for a souvenir, I chugged some water, and we headed to the bus stop to return to my friend's apartment. There was nothing other than water at the finish line. Another difference.
I love running races when I'm traveling. I really feel like there is no better way to see an area. You also get a feel for people, you get an intimate knowledge of the terrain you cover, and you give something of yourself, ultimately enriching your experience.
Oh! And I climbed St. Paul's Cathedral the next day. Only 530 steps. Easy.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Update, what's that?

Today I went to lunch with a colleague that is leaving. I've been lurking on her blog almost since she arrived, and I felt like I had to come out of the lurk closet. So I did. And in return, I told her about this blog. You know, to even out the embarassment.

The potential that the one person who reads this (Billy rocks!) could turn into two... well, it made me feel guilty for not blogging more.

That, and as I said before, I really hope the craziness that has been the past several months is over.

Annnnnd, I've just started to train for my winter of halfs! I signed up yesterday for Austin and Dallas Run the Rock when I heard that Houston is already sold out. (Took less than 48 hours, wtf?? Last year it took months!) I'm currently looking for another nearby option in January since not running Houston messes up my half-per-month concept. I'm thinking the Kingwood half that is on New Year's Day, but that would put a bit of a damper on my New Year's Eve, which we always spend with P's family... we'll see.

So, next up, London pice (probably this weekend), and a race report from the Winbledon Windmiler's 10K I ran while in the UK.

Btw, it is hot here. Really freaking hot. (81 degrees at 4am toay!) Like, an old lady who has been in H-town for 50 years said to me on Saturday that this was the hottest, most miserable summer she had ever seen in Houston. Seriously. The two weeks in the UK, where the air feels like it is conditioned, deacclimated me to the heat. I'm struggling in my runs so far this week, but I'm getting them done. Hopefully in a week or two my body will remember that I can actually run in the heat. Really!

I'm back, baby (I hope!).

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Shit Storm -> Silence

There is a reason I haven't been blogging. I can say all I want that work is more stressful (it is), but the truth of the matter is that I haven't had anything very nice to say, so I've been not saying anything at all.

Just after the marathon (I mean literally - the very next day), we found out Preston's AD was in the hospital. She had a colostomy. She was in the hospital basically all the way until March. Then my boss's parents both died within a month of each other, and work truly was a burden for that month, because there was a lot of slack I was trying to pick up. Then on Easter afternoohn, Preston had his Vertebral Artery Dissection (God smoting the pagans, perhaps?), which he is still on medication for, and we felt the effects of that all the way into May.

On my birthday, May 5th, I was eating anything and everything that I wanted. By afternoon, I felt like I was going to puke. The next day, I was tired, and I still felt like I was going to puke. Everyone at work convinced me I was pregnant, and my last period had been a fluke, so I took two pregnancy tests, which were negative, and waited a month before going to the doc for the fatigue, just in case. That whole month, I felt the fatigue. Every day. Some days worse than others, but I can scarcely remember what normal feels like any more. The doc tested me for everything: AIDS and Syphillis (both of which I knew I didn't have, but I'm a fan of the rule-out, if it helps!), Hepatitis, Mono, pregnancy, h. pylori, Kidney function, liver function, thyroid function, blood count and chemistry. They took 6 vials of blood and a cup of pee!!

I waited a week for the results, and everything, I mean everything, was normal.

What am I supposed to do now?

I heard a piece on NPR on my way to work that rang a bell for me. This is not normal, for me to hear about a disease and think that I have it, but this time I just really do. I was tested Wednesday for Celiac, and though I don't have the results back, I started a gluten free diet on Friday.

Also on Wednesday, AD went back into the hospital, and Preston came home with a 102 fever and seriousl GI problems. She's still in ICU, but we haven't seen her because of P's sickness. He's starting to feel a bit better, but I think he may have passed it on to me.

That's it. 6 months of insanity.

I write this now because I am hopeful that my part in the insanity is almost over. I hope this test shows I have Celiac so that I can fix this mind-numbing fatigue. I hope Preston's follow-up on his VAD in late July shows him healed so that he can go back to normal. And assuming AD is ok, we are having a vacation to London soon.

So, it is my ferverent hope that my roller coaster is about to come out of its prolonged free-fall, and start actually climbing the hill again. That's my hope, and I'm sticking to it.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I Signed Up for Another One!

The New Orleans Mardi Gras Marathon/Half just got taken over by Rock n' Roll, and they are signing up (like Dallas) the first 500 people for $50. I'm in!!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Rock n' Roll Dallas Half Marathon

Saw in my email that this event was going to be inaugurated 3/14/2010. Ah, my home town. I couldn't resist. $50 entry fee to the first 500 participants. I'll be there! (And it fits perfectly with my brilliant Winter of Halfs plan for running domination.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I Had a Dream

Of a beautiful world where I didn't dream about work.

That dream was not reality last night. This was my dream (which really sheds light on how I'm feeling about work):

I was in my Boss's car with Preston and a man we'll call ShelfDude. Boss was driving, I was in passenger seat, P behind me, and Dude behind Boss. My cell phone rings and it is BlackBetteMiddler who always calls everyone "Sweetie" (BBM for short). In the dream the parking garage at work apparently is accessible from every level of the work building (instead of half a mile away like IRL), and my car is parked just outside the Vault entrance. The moving company is ready to move the Vault items into the new wing, so they're going to tow my car (the Red Menace). I start freaking out - I've parked in a perfectly legal and valid space, and they can't just tow my car because they don't like it!! At a certain point, I give up and hand the phone to Boss, knowing that she's more diplomatic than I, and thus has a better chance of saving my car. I turn around to P and ask him if he could catch a bus back to the Library to save my car. He nods, so I turn back to Boss, but now she and ShelfDude have switched physical places in the car, and the car is now a huge truck, and he is on my phone arguing with BBM. I try to get his attention to make the suggestion that P pick up my car. He gets super annoyed, tells BBM to hold on, grumpily listens to me, cuts me off, gets back on my phone, grabs a plate of half-eaten food off the dashboard and uses a knife to start scratching notes to himself in the food. I turn to look incredulously at Boss, who has a pair of blunted scissors and is feigning stabbing herself in the neck with them. The phone snaps shut and I turn to ShelfDude who says, "Your car will be towed in one hour." I start to cry.

And the dream ends. I wake up, pissed, to start off my day.

That dream packed in a bunch of actual imagery from my day yesterday, along with all the insanity, and the frustration. I wish I had dreamed it earlier in the night, so I didn't remember, and so I wasn't left with the lingering anger and frustration that I'm still feeling.

3 miler this morning, with the last quarter mile at max effort (felt like I was going to puke), and then drills. Lunged until I could lunge no more, and am not sure I can stand back up from this desk!

That is all. Thank the gods this is Friday for me.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Plan alteration (already)

The more I think about the Austin Triathlon, the more I think not this year.

Will aim for the full oly on the Clearlake one, though.

I've been feeling pretty crappy for about 3 weeks now. It is starting to wig me out a little. It started on my birthday. I was having a great day, fun, eating whatever I wanted, and by afternoon I felt like I needed to throw up. I figured that I had just eaten something (or a combo of somethings) that didn't agree with me or each other. The problem is that I've had intermittent nausea ever since. And I've been really tired - sleeping more than normal and still barely able to drag myself out of bed in the mornings. I've been missing workouts because of it. And I'm hungrier than normal. I actually was afraid that I was pregnant, but I am not. (I am sure that I am not.) Preston wants me to go see a doc, but I just don't know what I'd say to a doc, you know?

We'll see. I'm not sure how much more of this I can put up with.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Winter Plan

Seems strange to be thinking of the winter plan just when the heat of summer is really setting in in Texas, but last year I had started the winter plan more than a year in advance - when I signed up for the Rock 'n Roll Half in San Antonio, so I guess 6ish months is really pretty reasonable in comparison.

I've been noodling on this for more than a month. Some of it is still variable - the triathlon parts, to be specific. But I'm really excited about the running plan, so it is seeming more solid.

Here it is: I want to do a boatload of half marathons this winter, starting in October, and with the goal of getting faster at that distance. I think this is the perfect plan for improving my distance stamina and my overall speed. I would like to do another marathon, but I think if I take a winter to focus on this plan, I'd have a better chance of succeeding at the marathon distance. I'll also throw in some shorter races for fun. Here is the plan in detail:

October 25: Houston Half
November 15: San Antonio Half
December 13: Dallas White Rock Half
January 17: Aramco Houston Half
February 1?: Mardi Gras Half in New Orleans
February 14: Austin Half

I'd also like to run the Ten for Texas, the Run Thru the Woods 5 Miler on Thanksgiving, the Mardi Gras Beach 10K in Galveston, and some of the HARRA Spring Series. I think focusing on the Half distance will make it easier for me to do some of the shorter races that are so fun for me (and so good for my speed!).

Triathlon-wise, I'm entertaining a theory for the remainder of the season, and for the beginning of next season. I'm thinking about trying to get in two Olympic distance tris to end out this tri season. I had really hoped to get more in, but there just hasn't been much in the area that seems interesting to me. So I'm thinking of the Clearlake Int'l Triathlon on August 22 (this one could possible be the sprint or the relay with Preston...), and then the Austin Triathlon, which is on Labor Day (September 7th). These are still just thoughts... and then I'm thinking maybe of the Lone Star Half Iron in Galveston in late April... it seems like I'd be well-trained for the run after that winter schedule... and the swim is not a problem... the question is really the bike and running off the bike...

We'll see. But that run plan is solid. It is on.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cool Front

H-town is having what is probably its last cool front of the short Spring season. It was only about 60 yesterday morning and this morning, so I ran both days, my first two-in-a-row since the marathon! (Sad, I know, but progress!) 5 miles on Monday and 3.75 today, with core on Monday and lifting today. I'm gonna be sore, I already am sore, but it is good. It is the kind of sore that tells me I've gotten off my ass.

That's all I've really got time for right now, so I leave you with the marathon photo that I asked my parental units to purchase for me for my birthday. And so, with purchased permission, with a Texas flag short in front, and both feet off the ground:


Monday, May 18, 2009

Someone wrote this about me

I'm starting to feel like a voyeur, lurking on this blog that is written by this woman at work. But if she knew I lurked, she probably wouldn't write things like this, and it is just the most amazing feeling to know that you spoke and someone heard you. And to know what someone thinks of you without the filter.

So, from her blog:

"She said a really interesting thing. She said it was her compulsive sense of duty that brought her back. She had responsibilities, and she wasn’t going to abandon them. So she clawed her way back with the help of a therapist. And if you met this woman you’d see how that perfectly encapsulates her personality. She’s an excellent manager. She’s hardworking and driven. She’s one of those people who strikes you immediately as being completely together. …because of her compulsive sense of duty.

She’s also really funny."

Wow. I think that everyone needs to find out that someone thinks something like this about them, some time.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Summer Has Arrived

My run at the CB&I was the first real heat I've run in this year. Of course, it was later in the day that I normally run. It had been being in the high 60's or low 70's before daylight, and I was ok with that.

After CB&I, I took a week off, and in that one week, I swear the morning temps got 10 degrees hotter and 50% more humid. This is the time last year when I truly lost my mojo. This year, my mojo has been a bit misplaced since January, so I figure now is when I get it back. If I can get through the next couple of weeks without walking on my runs, and without losing all of my speed, I can go into next winter in a much stronger position. So I figure, let's go 3-6 miles 3-4 times per week through the end of May, no walk breaks. I can run as slow as I need to (because speed can always be added back if you can sustain your heartrate in the "running zone"), but I can't walk. Started it off this morning with a 4 miler that took 45 minutes. Whatever, I didn't walk. Did a nice pick-up at the end to sub-9 pace and held for just a few minutes, to prove to myself that I could.

And I decided on this fall's racing plans. I'm going to do a whole load of half marathons, with the goal of improving my times at that distance. And with the goal of doing a half-iron in April. Bring it on!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Yesterday I Got a Year Older

It was a quiet birthday, as birthdays go. Preston was working, so I just watched some tv and read a bit and hit the sack when I got home from a long day at work. The long day at work was an accident. I was trying to only give myself fun stuff to do, but it didn't really work out... the coworkers brought yummy foods and stuff, and there is no dieting on birthdays, so I pigged out. Just after lunch I started feeling like I was going to puke. I thought perhaps I had eaten some bad food at lunch? The feeling has persisted into today... I feel terrible.

But back to birthday business... this one was a strange one. Usually I look back at the year and think it felt short. I was 26 and now I'm 27, where did the time go, and all that jazz. This year, I already felt 28. I looked back at the year and thought, "I can't believe I'm not 28 yet." I feel 28. I feel a little old.

It has just been a really heavy year. My first full year in management at work. My boss had some personal tragedy and I had to shoulder a heavy burden while she coped. Then Preston's VAD. Even training for the marathon. I feel my 28, this year.

(It isn't helping that everyone at work assumed I was 30!)

Monday, May 4, 2009

CB&I Triathlon Race Report

Or yes, I am still training/racing even though I'm not blogging. I'm not blogging because my husband had a vertebral artery dissection, was in the hospital for 3 days, and is now at a high risk for stroke for the next 3 months. Ok, so I wasn't training while that went on. But I'm trying for back to normal, here. (PSA re: VAD to follow, I hope!)

So, around New Year's I convinced my 'rents to come into town to spectate at their first tri, my first tri of the season, the CB&I.

4am on race morning came early, as always. I managed to empty my belly 4 times before we left the house, and another two after we got to the race. We left the house at 5:15, arrived to transition with plenty of time for me to set up, find the bathroom, set up some more, bathroom again, talk to P and Mom and Dad, and wait some. I brought my bike to check-in the night before, where the lovely dude from Bikeland fixed the grumpy shifting that wasn't wanting to go from the middle to the large chain ring, and where I was asked, as always, "Have you crashed this thing?" YES, people. I am a total spaz. The bike has scratched paint, a missing shifter-cover, and is slightly bent because I crashed it. Moving on. Thanks to the dude for fixing my girl!

Anyways, my wave wasn't taking off til 7:24, so we wandered down to the water to watch everyone else's. I hung out with the family until about 7:15 when I lined up. I had swum at the practice swim the weekend before, so I knew the water was cold, and remembered how not to freak out, etc. Good thing. It was srsly cold.

I lined up about 3 people back as close to the bouy line as I could. I took a good line, and I was glad for it. I felt like I was only passing people. I wasn't passed except by the fastest people in the wave following. I don't know why the swims always seem to take so long... Out of the water in 11:07. Faster than last year, but not in the 10's as I had hoped.

Out of the water and into transition. Tried something new this time: put a hand towel at the end of my towel. Used it to quickly wipe my face, then bent over and used it on the tops of my feet. Was really pretty effective. Put on my Drymax socks (I definitely like these better than my Asics for triathlons), bike shoes, helmet, skipped the sunglasses because it was so overcast, and I was off!

Ran to the mount line, then wasted probably 30-45 seconds trying to get on my bike. Even though I had set the pedals before the race, they were moved, so I was shaking, trying to edge forward, trying to clip in... (total spaz). Finally I took a deep breath, consciously told myself to calm down, managed to clip in, and then caught my biker ass-pad on my seat. Rode out of transition with my bike seat-nose up my butt, telling myself if I could just get my left foot clipped in, then I could stand up and get my ass on the seat. I was seriously graceful. Not humiliating at all.

Anyways, once I was finally aboard my bike, it actually went shockingly well. I was passing people this year!! Not a lot, but, still! I averaged over 17 mph. It was pretty windy, but I just tried to spin it out when I felt bad. My arms still bothered me a bit - I get stiff, my shoulders ride up and I have to remember to relax them, etc, but I'm working on it. The bike really seemed pretty much a non-event. I rolled in just under 53 minutes later, knowing I beat last year's time. What more could I really ask for?

Ah, I could ask that they not make the bike-in run any longer. I am astonished that my T2 time is faster than last year's. It is really a tribute to the Yankz, because I had so much farther to run with my bike to rack it I figured I'd have lost any gains I made...

And out I ran. Couldn't get my Garmin going right - whatever, didn't care. Just keep the legs moving. And the legs didn't want to move. I felt pretty terrible. Pretty quickly fell into the "just keep running, only walk the water stops" routine. Which was successful for me. I did only walk the water stops. But I didn't feel nearly as good as I wanted, nor did I run as fast as last year. It is ok, and I'm not beating myself up over it, but it wasn't what I wanted. I think there were a few factors in play: 1) I have decreased running speed this year. That is no secret. I am not as fit for speed as I was. 2) I have decreased running fitness this year. I've been lucky to run 3 times per week since the marathon. I've been working on my bike, etc. 3) It was pretty warm, and super humid. I am NOT acclimated to that yet. It didn't hurt my swim or bike, but I really felt it on the run. And finally, 4) I think I mentally checked-out there a bit at the end. That is my own fault. I didn't have fight in me.

Overall, I'm pleased with this race. I went faster than last year. I went faster in 4 of the 5 split times over last year. I'm not thrilled with my fitness, but that is my own fault, and I still need to get a little of my mojo back. I'm working on it. I was hoping that this would help me solidify my Fall racing plans, but I'm still pretty up in the air. I'd definitely like to get a few Oly's under my belt this season, though. And I'm starting to think that maybe the fall running season should focus on doing half marathons faster, and then start looking at maybe the half iron down at the Lone Star Tri festival??

I'll publish the official splits and compare them to last year in the next post, when the results website is working!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Is this thing still on???

Ok, I'm back. At least I think I am back. I hope I am back.

I DNS'd the Trolley Run last weekend. I had also planned on running the TLA Hetherington Fun Run the Thursday before. Not a DNS because I had never signed up, but definitely also a mental DNS. The reason? Sickness. I woke up sick on Thursday morning, not too shocking since Preston had been sick earlier in the week, but a little surprising because I haven't been sick in so long. I had to go to work on Thursday and Friday (TLA and speaking at TLA), and so I still felt crappy on Saturday. My entire focus for the Spring, blown in 3 days. And my first ever official DNS.

I'm not as upset as I thought I'd be. I really need a re-arrange on my priorities, and the fact that the CB&I Triathlon is a month out, and I have no more only running races planned means I can stop feeling like I always have to run (and like I'm cheating on running if I swim/bike/lift) and can just try and focus on getting my mojo back.

So, this week went really well. I was still a little tired from all the sick on Monday, but I didn't let it stop me. 5 miles run and 1900 yards swam. Tuesday I was exhausted because I had gone to the Astros Opening Day (YAAAAAY BASEBALL IS BACK!!!!) the night before, but I still got on the trainer for an hour. Wednesday another hour on the trainer. Thursday 4.25 miles run and 2700 yards swam. Gonne lift/core today, and want to brick tomorrow with Sunday off.

Swimming right now is going really really well. For the past several weeks, every time I've gotten in the water I've felt really good, and I've been going faster too. Less stress on my aerobic system, less need for rest on the wall, more yards, and faster. I couldn't ask for anything more. Every time I get out of the pool I feel emotionally lifted. It is awesome!!

Running and biking are a slightly different story. The run on Monday was great, but Thursday blew, and I think that that is because I'm not used to running on dead legs any longer. Gotta do some bricks. Gotta suffer through this period of adjustment.

Biking is ok. I'm really focusing on it, and I am pleased with the amount of time I am able to spend in the saddle (up to 90 minute sessions so far), and I am seeing improvements in my speed, too. Biking will never be my favorite, and improvements are coming slow, but I keep reminding myself that they are coming, and for that I should be happy.

Been neglecting my lifting and core a bit, but that was to be expected when I started tri training again. That was why I focused so much on it at the end of the marathon training... actually I'm taking an aerobic-free day today, but I do plan on lifting and coring when I get done with this...

I'm really trying here. Trying to be back in the saddle, and trying to get my head inthe game. I'd like to try to neglect this blog a bit less too. Just the other day I was trying to remember some stuff, and I came back here to look at my race reports. And I got all the info I need. Sometimes I feel like I lose sight of what this blog was for. I started this thing for me, and its purpose continues to be to help me. I need to use it more. Everything else is a by-product.

Ok, I'm off to the gym!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Something's Gotta Give

I ran a PR at the Bayou City Classic 10K. I'm really pleased - it was by over a minute-twenty.

But I still can't seem to get up in the mornings. It is Friday, I've only run once this week. The rain has proven too easy an excuse. And I don't feel like working out today, at all. I never do on Friday. And then I never end up doing it on the weekends. And then each week starts over where I swear I'll be better and I am good on Monday and Tuesday, but fried by Wednesday and barely hanging on by Thursday.

Beyond the working out, I'm not happy. Work has been stressful (hence the lack of blogging). I'm to the point where it is difficult for me to give a shit, and that isn't a place I want to return to. To top things off, my normally wonderful boss is suffering from grief that is beginning to look like depression, and she needs me, but I can scarcely lift myself from this funk.

In my personal life, I tell my husband what I need, but he doesn't seem to be willing or able to provide it. I take refuge in books, and it pushes him farther away. And so we circle, like fighters in a ring, each feinting, but never closing the distance between us.

I think I may be teetering on the edge of depression myself. Something MUST give. But I don't know what. I don't know. I feel powerless to choose or change my path, and frightened to let the chips fall where they may if I do nothing.