Sunday, September 23, 2018

Monday Musings 9/24

Welcome to fall!  It's tough to be back on the Front Range and going to work.  It is my last week at CU, and I can't wait to start my new job.  I'm itching to update my LinkedIn profile.  How adult is that?

Now that I'm back from vacation, it's time to start decorating for fall, and then Halloween.  

The fall colors were incredible up at Grand Lake, and when the cold front came through, high temps were in the 60s, the sun's angle definitely shifted, and the shadows were getting long.  It really felt like fall.  My mom and I worked on my t-shirt quilt, did some Alaska scrapbooking, and I generally relaxed with some workouts thrown in.  Working out up there is no joke, and I was huffing and puffing through most of it.  I did two runs, 2 miles and 2.5 miles, since that's all I could manage.  My lungs were on fire!

We also had some fun at the quilt shop my mom shops at.  It's fall, so there are some really fun patterns out there.  The bats above is one the owner can't keep in stock, no matter how many she orders.  They will definitely be coming to work with me.  Since I start Oct. 1, I need Halloween decorations.

I saw some great wildlife too.  We went into RMNP park Monday evening to see the elk bulging.  Really, it's a squeak.  I think Mother Nature had a little too much when she created the elk.  It's this majestic looking animal, and the male whistles through his back teeth to make this squeaking sound.  We heard it all over as the males were calling to all the females in the park to join their herds.

I also saw the family of foxes in my parents' neighborhood, a bald eagle, pronghorn, and the ground squirrels.  The ground squirrels are what keep the foxes around.  The foxes have picked off the bigger, less agile adults throughout the summer.

Two weeks from today is my next 10k!  While this wasn't exactly altitude training, it was good to relax and start my taper period on vacation.

Linking up with Holly and Wendy for Weekend Wrap-up.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Making a T-Shirt Quilt

My mom quilts, and I started thinking of making my race t-shirts into a quilt.  The only one I was wearing was my Tinker Bell 10k shirt, and the others were in a pile in my closet.  I'd been looking at the companies that compile and make the quilts, which started the idea.  When I mentioned it to my mom, she said she could do it.  OK then!

First up was the layout.  We bought a t-shirt quilt book that had different layouts, and it was fun looking through it.  I wasn't sure I wanted the standard square panels, and the layout that stood out was a collage style.  Most t-shirt logos are different sizes, and the collage style made it look really fun.  I also had different size shirts, between unisex cotton shirts, and different ranges with the women's cuts.

(There really is no standard is there?)

I had 16 panels and I decided to make the 4 half marathons the corners.

4 half marathons - Princess half, Dallas half, Eugene half, WDW half
4 5Ks - Mickeys 5k, Trick or Trek 5k, Showdown 5k, Color Run
3 10Ks - Tinkerbell, BolderBoulder, RnR Las Vegas
1 12K - Bay to Breakers
1 Bay to Breakers shirt with the streets on the back
1 I did it shirt with both front and back
1 volunteer shirt from RnR Denver

We also cut out the major sponsors from the back, and used the sleeve panels with the sponsors.  Since the logos were different sizes, these fillers went into the gaps between shirts for more pops of color.

I had thought about waiting until after the Boulder Rez 10K to use that shirt, but there wasn't room!  I'll start collecting shirts again with my next races.  I've picked out the fabric too for the back and borders.  Now all that's left is for my mom to piece it together.

Speaking of which, I signed up for a 5k the weekend before Thanksgiving.  They don't give out shirts either, it's hats! 

Friday Five 2.0 with Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Monday Musings 9/17

I'm still blogging a little bit up here, and there's big news on my front.  Right before heading up to Grand Lake for the week, I was offered a new job!  I've mentioned how my current job had gotten very frustrating and things weren't going well at all.  Someone told me in June maybe it was time to admit this job wasn't a good fit for me, and I should look for one that is.  I wasn't ready to completely admit it, but I did start looking at job boards in June, and I finally admitted it in July and started applying.  It's all pending the background check, which should be very boring. 

Some other news is New Balance finally released version 9 of the shoe I use.  I saw it last week scrolling through my phone, and tried to get a pair before leaving town.  I went to the big running store in Boulder, and they didn't have the new versions yet.  I have been tracking New Balance all summer, and the shoes must've been released just last week.  So new the stores don't have them!  No worries.  I was just so excited that the new version is out, with some nice color schemes.  Isn't that what all runners look for in shoes?

I have managed to suffer through a two mile run, at 8100 feet.  OMG.  I hadn't run since my 6-miler, and I'd only been in Grand Lake for one full day, plus Friday evening.  My lungs were burning and my heart felt like it was pounding out of my chest!  I had kind of been looking at the Steamboat 10k for something new, and maybe not now.  It is about 1,000 feet lower in elevation than Grand Lake, so maybe?  I don't have a plan for it as of right now.

Most of my weekend has consisted of relaxing, looking at the amazing fall colors up here, and watching the wildlife.  So far I've seen 3 white-tailed deer, one of the neighborhood foxes, the ground squirrels the foxes like, pronghorn, and a bald eagle.  I hope to get into RMNP soon to see the elk.  These are great majestic animals, and nothing but this loud squeak comes out!

Linking up with Holly and Wendy for Weekend Wrap-up.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Friday Five: I Changed My Mind

Runners... we like to change our minds, right?  I know I posted on Tuesday I was going to wait until next week, in the mountains, to do my 6 miles.  I changed my mind Tuesday :-p  This was the first time I broke up a run, and I did 4 miles, then 2 miles.  Gotta work in what I can, when I can!  I just got in a mood Tuesday after work, and with everything that's been happening, I just wanted to run.

That means I am officially in the taper period.  I'm really going to take things easy next week and let myself unwind.  If I want to workout, fine.  If not, fine.  I want to enjoy being outside and experiencing fall weather.  My mom took pictures on Tuesday of the leaves changing, and it looks gorgeous.  The elk are also starting to bugle, which officially makes it fall in the mountains.

I don't know how much time I'll be blogging, but check out IG.  I'll definitely be posting pictures there.  I moved to Colorado to have a real fall season again, and I'm going to enjoy it :)

Friday Five 2.0 with Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Change with the Seasons

Last week I posted about my fall plans, and this week is about how things will change because of fall.  So far there's not much to speak of.  We're starting another heat wave, and I'm so over the heat.  I've got fall decorations up inside the house, I'm shopping for outdoor Halloween decorations, and my fall Sweaty Bands arrived in the mail yesterday.  I'm waving good-bye to summer, as I drive up to Grand Lake this Friday.  Originally I was going to head up after my 6-miler Saturday, and now since it's going to be 90 on Saturday, I'm heading up a day early.

I want to feel that fall weather.  My mom said it was 35 in Grand Lake early yesterday morning, and I want that cool air.  Give me a few days to acclimate to the additional altitude, and I'll want to attempt my 6 miles outside up there.  Now I just need to figure out what to pack.  Layers for sure.

It really does make me think why I opted for an early fall race this year.  I should know better.  To take my mind off that, I mapped out my training for Princess.  The big factor will be the weather, and it all starts Dec. 10th.  That gives me more time than I thought to take a break after the Boulder Rez 10k.

Tuesdays on the Run with PattyErika, and Marcia.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Monday Musings 9/10

A full week to work, after last week's holiday and then taking a sick day.  It's going to be a long week, right?  On top of that, I head up to Grand Lake after my long run this coming weekend, and spending a week up there.  That means this week is really going to hurt.

I started Friday off by ordering a couple more fall/Halloween Sweaty Bands.  They had a video post on Facebook of their new designs, and I bought 2.  I bought one with black cats last year, and now this year I've ordered one with pumpkins and one with bats.  The pumpkins one is good for fall in general.  Since I was in a fall mood this weekend, I also got out my Jim Shore Tinkerbell for the season, and a quilt wall runner.

I've posted on IG that I've discovered the next cruise I want to do, and I've been looking at the excursions in the ports.  There were two cruises that caught my eye when I was on the Westerdam, one is 14 days, and the other is 7 days.  I think 14 days may be too much, and I want a couple of days in Amsterdam, either before or after the cruise.  The 7 day cruise is it!  It may seem early to be planning for a 2020 cruise, but I need a lot of time to plan, then purchase the cruise next June.  Next year's cruise for this option will be on Holland America's newest ship, the Nieuw Statendam, which just completed its sea trials.  It officially launches in December, with Oprah as godmother.  I'll have to wait and see if this is the ship for 2020.

Saturday started as a slow day, and even though the weather was perfect for running when I woke up, I just couldn't get myself going.  I was tired after breakfast, and I allowed myself time on the couch, watching TV.  I did get out to Echter's for some fall plants, and I bought tulip bulbs.  Tulips are my favorite flower, and since I'm new to this whole having plants thing, I didn't know I needed to plant bulbs last fall to have tulips this spring.  Lesson learned!  I also got some pansies and a couple of mums.  Once I got home, I finally felt like going for a run.  It was warmer than I wanted, and I managed to do my scheduled 3.  Since I was sweaty and gross from my run, I potted my new flowers and got them out in the sunshine.

The rest of Saturday was doing some quick Pure Barre for my seat, a little bit of US Open, and a trip to the grocery store.  Boy did I miss some drama by going to get food!  The rest of the evening was spent watching Victoria season 2, and almost falling asleep on the couch before 8pm.  I definitely felt like the life of the party with that move!

I'm trying something new on Sundays, and instead of a full body workout, I'm doing some core work with a couple HIIT thrown in.  Last Sunday was part 1 of Jillian Michaels' ab work, and this Sunday was part 2 of the ab work.  I'm getting work done, and I'm mostly giving my legs a day off to help them recover.  I say mostly because there are some leg moves and HIIT moves that get my legs going.  Most of the workout is focused on my core though, and I found the move that really tired me out: bicycles.  oof!

Anybody else watch the 5th Avenue Mile broadcast on NBC?  I DVR'd it so I could run a couple quick errands, and watch it when I got back.  Part of that was getting chocolate milk for run recovery.  As I posted in my Friday write up, I was looking for recovery tips to help my muscles after long runs.  While I can eat a little bit when I'm resting, I've never been a protein shake person.  I'm opting to try chocolate milk.

Linking up with Holly and Wendy for Weekend Wrap-up.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Friday Five: Recovery

Today's about recovery.  This week has been strange since Monday was a holiday, and then I worked from home Tuesday.  Then I was home with crud on Thursday.  People are already getting sick, and I didn't want to spread this to anyone.  Then it seemed I have very little energy throughout the day.  On top of it, this week I was recovering from my 5-miler on Saturday.  Don't worry, I had my girl with me, who was LOVING me being home.  She shouldn't get too used to this.  I felt bad staying home a day during a short week, but I needed it.

My legs still felt tired on Tuesday, after two days of recovery from Saturday's run.  I saw my chiropractor Wednesday afternoon, and she suggested a protein shake or bar after my long runs.  Anyone have any good ideas?  I've looked through Run Fast Eat Slow for ideas, and wanted to see what y'all think would be good?  I ate a Clif Bar after my run on Saturday, so I wouldn't go to the store hangry, and that's a lot of carbs.  There's 9 grams of protein, and 44 of carbs.

In other news, the shirt and medal design was released for my race on the 7th.  That's definitely something to look forward to.

Friday Five 2.0 with Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Fall Plans

How was everyone's Labor Day?  I ended up sleeping close to 10.5 hours, and I couldn't begin to tell you the last time that happened!  Not even on vacations or extended holidays.  When I woke up, I had no clue what I wanted to do, and that's OK.  I knew I needed to do some strength training, and some biking.  I was a little sore from the Jillian Michaels workout, even in my legs.  The warmup has some squats, and there are some lunges in the workout too.  Bonus!

All of this is still in preparation for my race Oct. 7th.  My 5 miles Saturday were rather successful, and I have one more long run in a couple weeks.  Then I'm taking some rest and heading up to Grand Lake for the week.  I'm taking a rest because I huff and puff around my parents' house, so I figure if I can't breathe up there, might as well rest, right?  It'll be time to taper anyway, and lots to do with fall weather up there, and the elk rutting season.

As much as I questioned my choice for an early fall race, it'll give me a chance to recover and slowly get back into things before training for Princess kicks off.  I figure the beginning of December, which means some adjustments.  It'll be dark early in the evenings, and I might have to contend with snow too.  People are saying signs are pointing to a snowy winter.  We need it!

I still want to get out in the neighborhood after my race because it was a lot of fun seeing people put up their Halloween decorations last October.  I've even gotten into the spirit, just a tiny bit.  My zinnia was done, so I swapped in one of my stakes.  A cat isn't too Halloween, and at the same time it is Halloween.  The jack-o-lantern and the Boo! will be added later.

Tuesdays on the Run with PattyErika, and Marcia.

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Monday Musings 9/3

It's a long weekend!  Hallelujah!  It's been very much needed after two very long weeks after Alaska.  I confess, things haven't been going well at work for quite a while, and it's been so tough coming back to it after a week of fun with family, and no work responsibilities.  I am counting down to some fun, to keep me focused.  I have my trip up to Grand Lake starting the 15th, and then my race is two weeks(!) after I get back.

I came across this, and realized how much I would love to repeat RnR Vegas.

I've been really impressed with the medals for a couple years running, and I love these more than last year's (and I loved last year's!).  I'm not able to fit this in to my schedule this year, and you better believe it'll be on my schedule for next year!  Talk about planning.  I had no idea what I wanted to do after the Princess 10k, and now I do.  Back to Vegas!

Saturday I actually did wake up early and got all 5 miles in outside.  I was running out of ideas of where to run, and I was running out of water, so the last half mile was out and back in front of my house, with a small cul de sac thrown in.  The last mile was a little bit of a struggle, and I think once I actually have a route chosen for me in the race, things will go better.  I did have to blow my nose twice with my allergies, and I had a longer walk break while eating my sports beans, and I still finished with a good time.

After that I had acupuncture after lunch, then came home and snoozed for an hour.  That felt good.  She hit a couple new spots, and I felt like my mind could slow down a little bit.  I definitely needed that hour snoozing.  It felt like a good way to recover from my run.  I did end up going to bed rather early on Saturday since it seemed like a very long day.  I was out the door running before 7:30 to get ahead of the sunshine.  Heck, I'd even say the last two weeks have been extremely long.

I decided Sunday was a good day to get the crock pot out.  There's something about Labor Day weekend that really puts me in the mood for fall.  Not to mention college football, even though I don't watch it.  The best part is I can throw everything in the crockpot and go about my day and get my workout in.  I decided to torture myself with the Jillian Michaels' 6-pack abs workout.  I haven't done that one in months.  I really should get it in my schedule since it's such a good workout.

Linking up with Holly and Wendy for Weekend Wrap-up.


Monday: rest

Tuesday: 3 miles, prehab

Wednesday: Bike 4 miles, upper body strength

Thursday: 3 miles, prehab

Friday: rest

Saturday: 5 miles

Sunday: Jillian Michaels' 6-pack abs

Friday, August 31, 2018

Friday Five: Fall's Coming

By now, I've recapped my trip to Alaska.  The only thing I didn't mention was disembarking.  We basically got off the ship, onto a bus, and were at the airport.  Nothing exciting, and I didn't even get a stamp in my passport :(.  Allie was so happy I was home, and spent the new few days snuggling.  We snuggled last weekend too.  I'm sure she'll want snuggles this weekend too.  If the weather is cooler, she'll be all over me.  I made it up to her though.  I bought her a new condo:

It smells like the pet store and she's making it hers.

I won't buy her something every time I go on vacation.  This one was by far the longest I've had in a while, and she got to stay home.  I'm already looking at doing another cruise in 2020, on Holland America again.  They have cruises from Amsterdam going around Norway, and a couple have caught my attention.  Gotta save up for that!  Both Norway and the Netherlands are lands of my ancestors, and it would be fun to travel there.

For now, I'm planning a week in September up at my parents' place, with Allie coming with me.  Then Thanksgiving and Christmas up there, and she'll be with me again.  My next vacation will be for Disney Princess, and my mom and I are now fully registered with the travel agent.  We got the forms to fill out with our shirt size and expected time.  We didn't choose any of the add-ons, and I don't plan to shop much at the expo.  I'm normally a "pick up by race packet and leave" type person at expos.

Finally, I ordered this from the Disney Store.  I swear I'm fully in the mood for Halloween.  It may be for the outside, but this is going inside the front door so I can see it.  I also got a couple Halloween stakes from Hobby Lobby that I'll put in my flower pots.  It gets quite windy in the fall, and I need to make sure my decorations don't blow away.

Friday Five 2.0 with Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Alaska: Last Day

The last day :(  We spent all day at sea, and we spent it doing fun stuff on the ship.  All week I'd been seeing a special at the spa called Tired Toes, and I finally went to check it out.  I ended up talking my mom into it too.  We got our shins exfoliated, then covered in a mud layer.  While that was setting, we got some face treatments and a scalp massage.  Then they washed the mud off and we got foot massages.  After all the work I've put my feet through, and not just this year, that massage felt wonderful.

After that, we had been invited to the Mariner's Lunch, since we were repeat cruisers.  It may have been in 2005, but Holland America had us in their records, and we enjoyed a good lunch.  I got the corn chowder with chicken dumplings, then a salmon dish, and of course dessert.  There's a reason I was on salads last week... We also each had a glass of sparkling wine since this was the last day of the cruise.

At that point we went back to the state room, and at least I napped a little bit.  I don't normally eat like that at lunch, plus the sparkling wine, and I needed to sleep some of it.  We had another wine tasting to get ready for.

This one was with a much smaller group than the first day's tasting, and really went deeper into wine.  Today I learned about why certain wines need to be served in specifically-shaped glasses.  Those glasses ensure that wine is placed on the right part of the tongue, otherwise it's not going to taste good.  We compared a French white with a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, and I preferred the SB, and then a French red with a red blend from Washington.  I LOVED that red blend, and will need to see if I can find it around here.  It's funny how the French tout their wines as superior, and I thought the new world wines were much better.  To each their own.

Afterwards, I went back to the state room to finish up some packing.  I'd been slowly packing all day since our luggage was going to be collected that evening, and then delivered to the airport the next morning.  It makes it faster easier to transport like this.  We did something a little differently in 2005 since we didn't go to the airport.  We spent the night in Copenhagen.

Before dinner, we spent some time on the top deck, and we saw whale spouts!  What's more, we saw a pod of purposes during dinner, and some were having fun and jumping completely out of the water.  Dinner for me was a shrimp and corn chowder, prime rib beef with green beans and carrots, and creme brulee.  After dinner, the entire cooking staff came out for a curtain bow, and I do remember that from the last cruise.  The chefs and waiting staff are acknowledged for all the hard work they do.  We had a wine steward, Mylene, who was fantastic.

It was rather sad to be the last night, and then we woke up in Vancouver the next day.  Time to go back to reality.  Allie of course was VERY happy to see me.

Tuesdays on the Run with PattyErika, and Marcia.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Alaska: Ketchikan

Ketchikan was the last port we'd visit on the cruise.  We wouldn't dock until 11, and this was the day I had time to do my 4 miles on the Promenade Deck.  The previous night's When and Where said there'd be a 5k walk on that deck at 9:30, so I needed to get everything done before then.  Given the paces I'd seen on the treadmills earlier in the cruise, I knew I'd have to weave around so many walkers, and that wouldn't be fun.  It was windy, but not that cold.  I had the right amount of layers, and I didn't need to run carrying a water bottle.  The deck had water fountains in certain spots.  3 laps around equaled a mile, based on the sign on the deck.

Once we did dock, it started raining.  I didn't mind this time since I had the proper rain layers on.  I didn't have to meet my excursion until 12:45, so my parents and I left the ship to walk around the town a little bit.  Ketchikan has a number of totem poles around town, and it's amazing the detail and size of the totem poles.  We also made sure to get to the Diamonds International to get our free charms.

Mine!  Mine mine mine!
We headed back to the ship to get lunch and went our separate ways.  I boarded the ferry that would take me (and many others) up to the Misty Fjords.  It was going to take us 4.5 round trip, and we stayed on the ferry the whole time.  For the first time all trip, I saw a whale!  My mom was jealous since we hadn't seen any whales yet.

Once we got to the Fjords, we sailed around a little bit before heading back.  If I could've layed down, I would've.  A number of people ended up dozing, and I heard a little snoring.

When we got back, I headed back to the state room since my parents and I were having dinner at the Pinnacle Grill again.  We decided to order a glass of sparkling wine each to celebrate Alaska.  We wouldn't get off the ship until we docked in Vancouver.

Now, I do remember what I had this night.  I got the crab cakes for the appetizer, petite filet mignon with whipped potatoes, and then I got the chocolate volcano cake again for dessert.  I think all 3 of us did this time. 

One more day to go!