Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September's Virtual Challenge

Tomorrow is the last day of September and the virtual challenge I signed up for is wrapping up.  I received my medal (which is great!) and I reported my 5k time and core work.  With today's upcoming 20-minute core workout, I will have done 302 minutes of core this month.  Pure Barre classes helped a lot, since most of the class focuses on what this challenge considered core: abs, low back, glutes, hips and hamstrings.

To date, I've also run 19.6 miles, and I have one more run tomorrow, to wrap up September.  That's the most mileage in a month since my injury 2+ years ago.  I'm feeling good, and I hope October will be even better.  I have my 5k on the 10th, which is amazing.  I signed up for it in April, and now we're less than two weeks away.  I have a chiro appointment next week and I'll ask to get taped up for the race.  Just in case.

Tuesdays on the Run with  AprilPatty, and Erika.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Monday Musings 9/28

Last Monday of September.  Thursday I'll be able to start putting out the Halloween decorations, and Thursday also means the season premier of Sleepy Hollow.  I'm happy Fox renewed it for a 3rd season, and I'm excited to see where they go this season.  Last year it certainly had a sophomore slump, but I'm hoping they got those kinks out.

After dealing with some tight calves and maybe Runner's Knee, I was able to bang out 3.25 miles on Wednesday, which felt good.  My leg felt good, except for a bone bruise (?) but I knew it was the bruise.  Thursday I had an unexpected rest day but my hip was feeling tight so I tackled it with my lacrosse ball and extra stretches.  I'll call it an active rest day, and Friday was my scheduled rest day.  Saturday was a very strong 2.5-mile run.

To celebrate P&P's 20th anniversary, I decided to watch volume one on Friday and volume two on Saturday.  No wonder I'm a hopeless romantic.  I've got Mr. Darcy and I'm fine with that.

I also got Witness through Netflix and watched that Sunday night instead of football.  I hadn't seen it for a really long time, but if anyone is looking for a good Harrison Ford movie, check out Witness.  This weekend was all about putting my feet up (around working out) and watching movies.  I slept until 8am Saturday morning and 7am Sunday morning.  That is sleeping in for me, especially 8am on Saturday.  Allie's such a good cat too for letting me sleep.  Since she's a grazer, as long as she's got food in her dish, she's happy.

Weekly Wrap-up with Hoho Runs and MissSippiPiddlin.


Monday: rest

Tuesday: legs and core

Wednesday: 3.25 miles

Thursday: rest

Friday: rest

Saturday: 2.5 miles

Sunday: Pure Barre

Friday, September 25, 2015

Fun in the Fall

It's now officially fall and there are always a number of activities that are fall-based or simply start up in the fall.

1) The Texas State Fair starts today.  Confession time, I haven't been to the state fair, and I've been in Dallas since early 2009.  This'll be my 7th state fair and I haven't made my way down yet.  There's always that one day to avoid the state fair, and that is Oct. 10.  That's the OU/UT game, so either go during the game and leave before the game ends, or go a different day.

2) Fall races are starting to come fast and furious.  My 5k is Oct. 10, but races started up again this month and will keep going until it's too hot again, next year.

3) Hockey season starts too.  The Allen Americans start their season at home on Oct. 16, and I've not only been counting down to that game, but I've been counting down to when the NHL starts.  The Red Wings start their season Oct. 9.

4) Apple cider donuts are a must.  I may not be picking apples in Massachusetts anymore, but I can get the mix to bake them.  Which may be healthier than frying them, and I got a tip on how to make them into donut holes :-)

5) Halloween!!  I have fall decorations out at work but come Oct. 1, I will have Halloween decorations out too.

Friday Five with Eat Pray Run DCMar on the Run and You Signed Up For What?!  

Thursday, September 24, 2015


A few months ago, Berkeley Breathed brought back Bloom County, via Facebook.  Let's just say he gets it.  I don't care if he's to the right or the left (or smack in the middle).  He gets it.  Yesterday's strip summed up how I feel about political debates.  It's his version of Charlie Brown's teacher.  The wah wah wah has been replaced with Bill the Cat's "ack."  That's what I'll be hearing through every single debate for the rest of my life.  Ack.  With THBBFT! thrown in every now and again.

If he comes out with a Bill and Opus 2016 campaign t-shirt, I'll have to buy one. 


Thinking Out Loud with Amanda.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Happy 20th!

Anybody else see this?  The BBC's Pride and Prejudice hit its 20th anniversary!  I love this adaptation, so much so I can't watch movies based on the book.  There's too much going on that the story needs a mini-series to have the length of time to do it justice.

I'll have to watch the DVDs, maybe this weekend, in order to celebrate.  I've had the DVDs for years, and can't get enough of them.  I've read the book, but, I have to admit, I can't get through other Jane Austen books.  I'll chalk that up to knowing Pride and Prejudice so well, from this adaptation.  Of course, the book doesn't mention Darcy's swim in the lake at Pemberley ;-)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Strength Training for Runners

I found out the extremely hard way various strength training exercises are vital for a balanced body for running.  Before ITBS, I was only hitting the weight room and doing the same exercises over and over again.  Just weights.  I'd throw in Pilates here and there, but nearly enough, as it turned out.  I battled ITBS for 2 years, during which I started seeing a chiro and learned how out of whack my body was.  I got a cortisone shot after nothing was working, and I got prescribed PT and recommended to Airrosti.  The shot didn't do jack but Airrosti worked wonders.  And after a year at PT, I struck out on my own after my July appointment this year.  They said it was a matter of strength training so I took that to heart.  So what am I doing?

Pure Barre.  That's right, I'm one of the Pure Barre people now and I love it.  The first class what such a challenge, but right away I could feel it targeting my weak spots.  The "seat" and my hips.  PB is a full-body workout so my weaknesses aren't the only spots it works, but I feel it the most in those areas.  I'm also not as strong as I thought, so it's been a good ego check, but a fun one (if that makes sense) because I love a challenge.

At-home DVD workouts.  I've built up a pretty good (I think) DVD collection at home and have been focusing more on these workouts that your traditional weight room workout.  I still do weights every other Sunday, but that's only one kind of workout I'm doing.  Weights, Pure Barre, and body-weight exercises with small weights.  Workouts like the Iron Strength workout and a little workout called Butt Lift.  This one is a part of the 10-minute workout lineup, which is great because I usually end up doing two workouts when I put this in the DVD player.

It does have an abs workout as a bonus selection, but the other 5 sequences focus on the glutes and hips.  All of the exercises can be done at home, so I shift the coffee table around to have enough room to do them.

I do still have my yoga and Pilates DVDs, but Butt Lift and Iron Strength is making me work on the weak areas, which I'm loving.  Between weights, Pure Barre, Iron Strength, Butt Lift, and other core workouts, it's no wonder I've shifted to running two times a week instead of 3, so I can strength train 3 days a week instead of 2.  All of which is starting to pay off.  Yes, I think I have runner's knee, which means I need to strengthen my quads a little bit more, but that's good to know too.  It's still trial and error, but I feel myself getting stronger and making slow progress with my mileage build up.

Tuesdays on the Run with  AprilPatty, and Erika.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Monday Musings 9/21

I seem to be losing time in September.  I knew it would be a busy month, but I look back on that last two weeks and I've run a total of 3 times.  I've kept up my strength training, but I need to get back in gear to prep for my 5k on October 10th.

I knew I had to keep up strength training, which is easier since I can do it at home.  Throw in Pure Barre, and I can get some good strength training done during the week.  My calves were tight this past week (one was cramping during Pure Barre), and my run on Tuesday was rough with a weather system moving in.  I skipped working out Wednesday because that system knocked me on my seat.  Thursday I did parts of Iron Strength, and I spent that rest of the week stretching my calves and getting Icy Hot on them.  I even went in for a much needed massage on Sunday.  I hadn't been for over two years because of my ITBS.

I hope it helps with my tight calves.  Right now there's a spot right below my knee and slightly to the right that is giving me grief.  My chiro knew the spot and worked on it last week, and I think it's connected to the tight calves.  It flared up during my run yesterday so I got 2.75 miles done instead of the 3 I was shooting for, and I had to walk the last .1 miles.  I don't run until Wednesday so I'll work on that spot, between icing, stretching and rolling.

She's a pro at this relaxing thing
To help out with all this, I decided to try a recipe from Lauren Fleshman's blog.  A study was done that found collagen in gelatin supports the rebuilding of connective tissue.  Throw in her suggestion to make homemade jello with tart cherry juice for the anti-inflammatory qualities, and my interest was piqued.

Weekly Wrap-up with Hoho Runs and MissSippiPiddlin.


Monday: rest

Tuesday: 2.25 miles

Wednesday: rest

Thursday: Iron Strength

Friday: rest

Saturday: rest

Sunday: 2.75 miles

Friday, September 18, 2015

Pump It Up

I have posted some playlists and favorite songs in the past, so some of these may be repeats and some may be new songs.  I absolutely have staples when I run and I normally like fast paced songs for when I'm running.

These are songs that get me pumped up and I turn up the volume when they come up.

1) Edge of Seventeen - Stevie Nicks

2) Bellas Finals - Pitch Perfect

3) Thunder Road - Bruce Springsteen

4) Real Gone - Sheryl Crow (opening to Pixar's Cars)

5) You Wreck Me - Tom Petty

Friday Five with Eat Pray Run DCMar on the Run and You Signed Up For What?!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

That Extra Rest Day

Today's thinking out loud will start off with rest days.  I had to take an extra rest day yesterday, and I don't regret it.  I was exhausted starting on Tuesday and it carried over in to yesterday.  My plan was to nap when I got home from work and then do a workout, but I scrapped that after I napped for 40 minutes.  I don't normally nap that long, maybe 20 minutes but not 40.  I took it as a sign and sat on the couch watching TV.

We had a front come through Tuesday night and I'm sure it brought allergens and spores with it, but I don't think it completely caused my exhaustion.  I've been studying for a certification exam for work, and I'm taking it Saturday.  I'm at the point where I just want to take it and get it out of the way.  It's been a long time coming too with a review session in March (with my trip to Disney.  Yay conferences at the S&D!).  Then it's been studying all summer to memorize the info I need to know.  I'd like to pass it so I don't have to repeat this next year.

My run on Tuesday was tough but I still got it done.  My legs felt heavy and my calves felt tight.  My left calf started cramping during PB Saturday so I'm chalking their tightness up to that.  I've been in need of a massage for a bit and I have one scheduled on Sunday.  I opted for deep tissue and I'll have them focus on my legs since that's where the physical activity has been.  They normally end up on my back but I need them to focus on my legs.

Lastly, I'm seriously thinking of dropping my gym membership.  Since I started doing different types of strength training at home and Pure Barre at the studio, the number of trips I'm taking to my gym is maybe once every two weeks.  I can get treadmills at my fitness room, and once the weather turns nice, I want to be outside as much as I can.  I pay too much for my gym membership to be going that sparingly.  This is the first fitness room I've really used at any of my apartment complex's and I like it a lot.

Thinking Out Loud with Amanda.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

American Experience: Walt Disney

Anybody else watch American Experience the last two days?  4 hours on Walt, and I have an hour to go on the DVR.  And last night there was an hour-special on Jim Henson, which I also recorded.  If anybody missed my posted about the Disney Family Museum, here it is.  I could spend all day there if I wanted to.  There's just so much information.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Marathon Season

What could be a better reminder of fall than all the news coming out about fall events?  The NYC men's elite field was announced Sunday and Meb's running; Boston opened its registration process yesterday (anyone registering for next year?), the 5th Avenue Mile was completed this weekend, and the American field was announced for Chicago.  All that and the Olympic marathon trials is next February.  Whew, right?

It is difficult to think of fall stuff because fall hasn't hit Dallas yet.  We're getting hints of it, but the pattern we're in is it starts to feel like fall, then warms up, we get thunderstorms, then the temps drop again.  I have no idea what to expect for my 5k next month, but I'm prepping for a lot.  I need to buy a hand-held water bottle because there's only one water stop on the 5k course.  If it's a warm morning, one stop won't be enough for me, so I need to bring extra hydration.  I think a stop at my LRS is in order this weekend or next.

Tuesdays on the Run with  AprilPatty, and Erika. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Monday Musings 9/14

Another Monday.  I really need to learn to sleep in more.  I could do it in college but now that I've been working for 8 years, it's tough to flip the switch and sleep past 7.  7:30 on my lucky days.  I mixed things up this weekend and went to Pure Barre on Saturday and ran Sunday.  I downshifted gears during the week so Sunday was the only run I did this week.  I had probably THE best PB workout I've had since I started going.  I made note of an exercise to try at home because I STRUGGLED with it.  I always feel these in my stabilizing leg and have to break the hold because it's cramping.  I could barely do it and had to break often, which was frustrating.  I can do this exercise at home to get stronger for next time.

I do think all this strength training is working.  I had my monthly check-in with my chiro and he didn't have to do any adjustments to get my hips back in place.  Please please please let that be because I'm addressing the weaknesses and one side isn't pulling the other out of whack.  It felt good when he told me that.  He still worked on my spine and neck, but my hips are still where they should be :)

This weekend I made what I call healthy comfort food.  I also think it's a runner's dream meal.  It's pasta with chicken and various veggies.  Add on Parmesan cheese for extra flavor and protein.  My parents have made this since I was a baby when they found it at a time I moved to solid food and they needed to find recipes I would eat a lot of.  I don't add the zucchini since I don't eat that yet, but I do have the carrots, red bell pepper and tomatoes.  I cheat too and get rotisserie chicken at the grocery store.  I still have to shred it but I don't have to cook it.

Butter and olive oil
3/4 cup chopped onions
3/4 cup slivered carrots
3/4 cup 1-inch red bell pepper strips
1/2-lb slivered cooked chicken
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
2 cups diagonally sliced zucchini
2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
1/2 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper
Rotelle pasta
Parmesan cheese

Heat butter and olive oil in skillet, then add onions, pepper, carrots, chicken and parsley
Cover and simmer 10 minutes
Add zucchini, tomatoes, broth, salt and pepper
Cover and cook 15-20 minutes, or until all veggies are tender
Cook pasta, combine with veggies and chicken.  Add cheese on top.

Weekly Wrap-up with Hoho Runs and MissSippiPiddlin.


Monday: rest

Tuesday: Jillean Michaels Killer Buns and Thighs

Wednesday: chiro appointment

Thursday: Core yoga

Friday: rest

Saturday: Pure Barre

Sunday: 2.5 miles

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Thinking Out Loud 9/10

Ah September.  It takes so long to get here when summer's in full swing, and then there's so much to do before the end of the year.  Every year I have Christmas and birthdays to worry about once I get to this point in the year, and I get my lists out.  I already have ideas for some people, which will entail wine.  If you tell me you don't need anything, you'll still get something.  My grandmother says that all the time to my mom and I won't fall for that.

And now that it's September, Starbucks will start shoving pumpkin stuff in our direction.  I haven't been to Starbucks yet so I don't know what our branches are doing, but I don't like pumpkin.  I've never been a fan and then the sudden popularity of the pumpkin spice latte...  How many calories is that again?  I'll stick with my tea.  It's flavored, caffeinated water.  As they say in Doctor Who: "tea fixes everything."

I also figure if Starbucks and craft stores can shove pumpkin-whatever in our faces, I can get my Halloween playlist out.  It's a favorite, and I seem to have good runs when I've got it on.  I try to hold out until October to put out Halloween decorations (because I LOVE Halloween), but the playlist comes out earlier.  It's healthier than the PSL anyway.

Thinking Out Loud with Amanda.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

15 for 2015

This certainly wasn't a goal of mine, and there are more books due out before 2016, but I have reached 15 books read (not counting repeat books) for 2015.

1)      The Bride, Julie Garwood
2)      The Mayfair Affair, Tracy Grant
3)      Voyager, Diana Gabaldon
4)      The Bordeaux Betrayal, Ellen Crosby
5)      Point of Honor, Madeleine E Robins
6)      An Impartial Witness, Charles Todd
7)      A Grave Matter, Anna Lee Huber
8)      Mortal Arts, Anna Lee Huber
9)      Dreaming Spies, Laurie R King
10)   A Study in Death, Anna Lee Huber
11)   The Turncoat, Donna Thorland
12)   Go Set a Watchman, Harper Lee
13)   Mademoiselle Chanel, CW Gortner
14)   Malice at the Palace, Rhys Bowan
15)   The Rebel Pirate, Donna Thorland

 I have 5 books on my list to tackle next, or when they're published, since some aren't out yet. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Get It Done

How is everyone's Tuesday so far?  I could've slept another hour, at least, this morning.  I woke up at 7 every single day this long weekend, and now I'm clamoring for more sleep.  Hey, sleep pattern, get with the program!

Today's topic for TotR is running pet peeves, but I know I've talked about those in a prior post.  Before I get to my post today, this meme plays into pet peeves:

My topic is getting the run done.  I've noticed this summer when I don't want to run but still get myself on the treadmill, I have a really good run.  But I have to get myself to the treadmill.  Maybe I need a change and get outside, but the weather needs to break for that to happen.  We had 100s this weekend with some intense humidity in the mornings, so I was still inside.  The forecast for this weekend looks promising though.

My distance has increased too.  The past couple months I made sure to hit at least 2 miles to build a good base, and now I'm hitting 3 miles with more consistency.  I'm still running slow since my chiro wants me to focus on durability and not speed.  I'm always faster off the treadmill anyway, and I am running at speeds I didn't before (on the treadmill).

Between my workout DVDs, Pilates, Pure Barre and yoga, I can feel myself getting stronger, which means my "long" runs are getting better.  Maybe I will be able to have a good showing for the Tink 10k after all.

Tuesdays on the Run with  AprilPatty, and Erika. 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Monday Musings 9/7

How has everyone's Labor Day weekend been?  Anyone participate in the DL races? Mine's been nice and relaxing, which me putting away my phone for Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday, and unplugging a bit.  I did hop on the computer a few times, but my goal was to unplug from my phone.  It's amazing how much time I waste each day on that thing.

Instead I raced through a book I bought Thursday night for my Kindle.  I couldn't put it down.  I read another book by the same author and while I liked it, I could put it down and take breaks.  This one I had to find out what happened next.  I read a couple chapters Thursday, read for my hour long lunch break, then came home and plowed through 3 hours of reading before taking a break, then finished it Saturday afternoon.

Tomorrow work is wrapping up year-end so I've made it through another tough stretch.  That's one main reason I wanted to pull away from my phone and get some R&R, because the last two weeks have been tough.  We've been staring down deadlines and we made it.  The stress was a good motivator though and I channeled that into my workouts.

I got my virtual run done twice over between my run on Wednesday and my run on Sunday.  I do have the bib but now pictures.  My "I don't sparkle, I sweat" shirt proved to be prophetic Sunday morning with the heat index, and there was plenty of evidence all over the shirt.  I pushed my pace from the beginning and kept increasing my pace by .01 with each mile.  My cardio is starting to feel really good too.

Lastly my friends and I got to see a preview show of a new musical, Moonshine: the her haw musical.  Its world premier is here in Dallas on the 18th and right now its having a preview run beforehand.  I found it quite funny so if anyone is in the Dallas area or it's successful enough to go on tour, I recommend it.

Weekly Wrap-up with Hoho Runs and MissSippiPiddlin.


Monday: rest

Tuesday: legs and core

Wednesday: 3.25 miles

Thursday: legs and core

Friday: rest

Saturday: yoga

Sunday: 3.1 miles

Friday, September 4, 2015

Long Weekend Coming Right Up

It's finally Friday, which means when I get off work today, it'll be a 3-day weekend.  Anybody else feeling like this?

I do.  Why does this week feel so so so slow?

Today's Friday Five is fall races, but I only have two on schedule, and I've done my distance for the first one.

1) Virtual challenge with Run the Edge.  I did 3.25 miles Wednesday, which means my 5k distance for the challenge is done.  So soon?  Don't worry, I'll be running more, but this month is a little sporadic.  Next week I see my chiro, which is a must, and I lose a Saturday for a cert exam.

2) The Showdown 5k.  This is the morning of the UT/OU game, and I'll be sporting my Babson gear loud and proud.  There's no football team at Babson and given the spate of ridiculous hypocrisy and special standards, I hope Babson never does.  Undefeated since 1919.

Bucket List races:

3) I still have the Big Sur half on Monterey Bay on my bucket list.  There is no way I'm rushing in to the race so it's there if I can do it, whenever that may be.  I watched the Big Blue special on PBS this week, all about the animals coming to Monterey Bay and it makes want to be in Monterey sooooooo much.

4) Halloween races are so much fun because you can dress up for the race.  Most of the time I have fun people watching and for 5k's, what costumes the kids are wearing.  The last Halloween race I did, 4 boys were dressed up at Mario and Luigi and friends.

5) Turkey trots.  I don't believe in the whole gotta do something to earn my turkey, but it's a great feeling of accomplishment.  Get up early and run in the (maybe) crisp morning, before heading back inside to eat myself into a food coma.  That's the way Thanksgiving should be.

Friday Five with Eat Pray Run DCMar on the Run and You Signed Up For What?!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

My Favorite Dean Jones Movie

Sadly, I saw yesterday that Dean Jones passed away on Tuesday.  For you Disney fans, he was in movies like the Love Bug, which Cinemark already scheduled to show this weekend.  But my favorite film with Dean Jones is Disney's Blackbeard's Ghost.

If you're looking for a lighthearted, live-action Disney comedy, I highly recommend this.  It stars Dean Jones, Peter Ustinov and Suzanne Pleshette, with Elsa Lanchester and Richard Deacon.

Award-winning actor Peter Ustinov stars in this hilarious fantasy as the ghost of the legendary pirate Blackbeard. The once blackhearted scoundrel materializes in a small New England town, cursed to wander in limbo until he performs a good deed. He gets his chance when he decides to help a local college track team ... that hasn't a ghost of a chance of winning! Blackbeard finds himself full of team spirit, and dispensing his own brand of invisible coaching ... in this warmhearted comedy that will have you laughing from his first fade-in to his final fade-out! 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Rule #96: Aim

It's not quite a "goals" post, but what I'm aiming for gives me some wiggle room.  How about that?

August was a good month since I was able to continue building mileage.  I hope to do the same with September.

Yesterday marked the first day of Run the Edge's virtual challenge.  It's core work through the month, and it turns out, core work also includes the glutes, hips, hamstrings and low back.  So all of the strengthening exercises I've been doing qualify as core.  Sweet!  Throw in everything from Pure Barre except the upper body, and that qualifies as core minutes too.  The posted workout consisted of many exercises I'm already doing, so I upped the reps right away.

I do want to work on my speed work a little bit, and maybe get outside for a couple runs.  If the weather's nice, I'll tape up my leg and head on out.  My 5k next month will be outside, and I need to prep for that.  The treadmill can only do so much, and I need to find out where my cardio stands when I'm off the cardio machines.

Lastly, I want it to be fall soon so I can enjoy the crisp autumn air.  It's difficult each year knowing fall is delayed in the South, but that won't stop me.  Not this year.  If I need to put in some Halloween movies, so be it. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tangled Describes My Life

The sh*t show I expected Friday hit yesterday, and now I'm angry.  I'm angry at yesterday still being August and I have to keep waiting for my long weekend.  I'm angry at processes at work and I'm angry at people at work.  What started as a fun post on my personal Facebook page has inspired this blog post:

Me after work yesterday:

Me after people gave me wrong info at work:

Me right about now:

Me come Friday and the long weekend: