Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Runners' Dinner (or You're Training Like An A#%Hole)

Went to dinner with my sister Jeanine, cousin Kim (Chipper Kim for those of you who've read Dawn Dais' The NonRunners' Guide to Marathon Training for Women) and my cousins' cousin Lauren. (Let's just call her a cousin.) Jeanine, Kim and Lauren are training for Chicago '08 . . .we all participated in (and were pulled away from) the debacle that was Chicago '07. Jeanine's boyfriend Sunil joined us too . . .he isn't training for the Marathon (and therefore the sanest of the dinner bunch) but has done some other races with us.

It was good to see everyone and I thoroughly enjoyed dinner. Maybe it was because I love Mexican, maybe it was because the food was good, maybe it was because I didn't have to pick up crayons off the floor, get up to take someone to the bathroom right when the food arrived (twice) or repeatedly answer "Mommy, when is our food cominnnnnnnnnnnng?"

I didn't bring my camera so alas I cannot share a photo of the Marathoners-to-be or photos of our food like Kai does so well. Kai, next time you're in Wicker Park maybe you can visit and post photos on your blog :)

Anyway, while eating my ranchero beef tacos with corn shells served on a hot cast iron skillet, it became very clear that despite the best intentions, Jeanine and I have been training like a#$holes. Chipper Kim and Lauren have not.

(Kim, you know I love ya, but I'm sorry, when you run 7/8 miles with your group and then come home and run 3 more . . . AND text me about it, you are Chipper Kim)

Protein powders, deep tissue massages, trainers, therapists, magnesium supplements . . .Chipper Kim and Lauren are doing it right. They're training right, they're stretching right, they're eating right. Jeanine and I are not (although Jeanine was quick to point out that I'm the worst at nutrition, she's only the second worst. She may be right.)

Case in point:

Chipper Kim: ". . . so I take a protein powder and I notice a real difference . . .Jenn, what did you eat for your recovery meal after your eight mile?"

Me: "Recovery meal? (gulp) Oh! You know they have these mini ice cream Milky Ways now? They're only 90 calories! I had two. Oh, and potato chips."

Chipper Kim: Are you taking your glucosimine?

Me: Yes. I am. (Silently to myself, Did I?)

So what I've been slowly realizing and avoided admitting to myself came to full blown acceptance Sunday night. I've been training like an a#$hole. I'm working to improve that though, and asked Kim to type out everything that she's doing and email it to me so I can copy it exactly.

Hot and humid in Chicagoland this week, so running tonight, Wednesday and Friday night on treadmill, getting up earlier than early on Sunday to run my long run of 10 before Mike has to leave for work at 6:30 a.m.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Sound of Silence

Got out of bed at 5:30 a.m. on Saturday (I know, miracle of all miracles) and after some peanut butter on toast, headed out to do eight miles. Muggier than I would have liked, but was pretty pleased with myself for being out early in the morning. Noticed early on in the run that my legs felt a lot better than usual, probably because I've been running later in the afternoon and evening after a day of activity, I forgot what rested legs felt like.

Was moving along pretty well and was getting into a groove around mile 3 when I skipped past a few songs on the iPod and heard. . .nothing. Horror of all horrors. Fiddled with the headphones and could still hear the Nike + lady "Pausing Workout" so knew headphones were okay . . . was trying to go back and forth on playlist to see if that would help and inadvertently ended my workout (Dammit! I really like hearing "956 Calories" at the end of the run.) Tried to reset it, turn it off/on, the thing was locked up. Kept running with the headphones on thinking that maybe it would unlock itself and suddenly I would hear Fall Out Boy in my ears. Nothing. Except my breathing for five torturous miles. It's not a pretty sound.

Finished the eight miles but not really a satisfying run. Did more run/walk than I planned because mentally the sound of my breathing was messing up my focus. I had a hard time relaxing into the run. So instead I just made repeated deals with myself. "Just run until the fire hydrant. Ok, now you can walk until Fruitful Yield entrance. Ok, now run until you reach the funeral home entrance. Ok, lie down and die."

I'd be lying if I said that I wasn't worried about the Marathon. Really worried. I'm only one week behind my training at this point last year, but much more worried about it. I need to get in check mentally or I'm going to be toast by mile 10 at the Marathon.

Going out to the "Runners' Dinner" tonight. My sister and three cousins - - all training for Chicago '08 - - get together to eat, drink and talk about running/training. Expect that will help my motivation.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Calories Schmalories

Browsing blogs tonight as I wait for my daughter to fall asleep (again, please don't judge) and came across a comment on Runner Susan's blog about The Daily Plate. It's basically a calorie counter; that's what I need because I'm still stuck gaining and losing - - and gaining again - - the same five pounds. Running should help, but not when I run five miles and eat like I've run 10.

Speaking of running, I have been - - 3 miles on Tuesday, 5 miles on Saturday and 8 miles tonight (as soon as my daughter falls asleep). Not hitting 4 runs this week, but still getting the long run in (even if it is on the treadmill).

I went ahead and joined The Daily Plate; it's free and worth a try. Heck, if it works I might even be able to cancel that Weight Watchers Online membership I haven't been using.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Ice, Ice, Baby

Went to the doctor today. I officially have Plantar Faciitis. Seriously, how do you spell this thing?! Plantar Fasciitis.

"What's wrong?" Doctor asks as he walks in.

"I think I have plantar fasciitis." (I practiced how to say it before he came in so I wouldn't sound like an idiot.)

"I one hundred percent agree with your diagnosis." (Ok, that was easy.)

No heel spurs on the X-ray. I need to ice, ice, ice and stretch, stretch, stretch and continue wearing the Strassburg Sock. But I can keep training as planned.

The physician's assistant showing me the stretches mentioned that she participated in Chicago '07 too. I asked if she was going to run it again this year.

"No, I can't because I lose too much weight running. I eat like a horse, but can't keep weight on."

Oh, so sorry. Bitch.

Alright, maybe that's a little harsh but if you read the previous post you probably surmised I'm a little cranky this week. Ok, a lot cranky.

No need to confirm that via comment section, Mike.

Back to running on Tuesday.

(Pause my playlist on the left to hear video sound)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dreaded Realization (or Oh S#*t)

I've been debating whether or not to post this dreaded realization as it is personal in nature, but since it will impact my Marathon Day in a big way and I've already told the blogosphere that I got hit in the head with a bowling ball in high school, here goes:

Warning before you read any further: Male readers, especially co-workers, former co-workers, friends, family members, including brothers-in-law, cousins and dear God . . .my Dad, please leave and go read another blog. I recommend several blogs on the list down on the left. Mike, you can keep reading because you already know the good, bad and the ugly and still stick around. You already know this anyway.

Special Note: Male readers who have ever had the guts to stand in line (alone) to purchase feminine products for their wife or significant other have a special pass to continue reading. (Mike has done this several times over the course of the last 19 years and that is one of the many reasons he is a good husband.)

Given that last comment you probably know where this is going. Yes, that's right. If current biorhythm stays the same, I will have IT on Marathon Day. In fact, I will likely GET IT on Marathon Day. GETTING IT on Marathon Day is worse (at least for me) than simply having IT on Marathon Day. This is what I get for begging God for me not to get IT on my honeymoon 13 years ago.

Is IT what I think IT is you say? Yes, that time of the month, Eve's curse, Aunt Flow visit, Monthly Curse, whatever you prefer to call IT, all signs point to me having IT on Marathon Day. (Important: I appreciate comments, but really don't need to read comments about your favorite slang terms for IT, thank you.)

Just lovely.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Calling Nate Berkus . . .

What do you do with your race bibs? Mike and I have been acccumulting race bibs from our various 5ks, 8ks and my road to Chicago' 07, and between the two of us, we have a good amount. We've been keeping them in a file folder until we figure out what to do with them.

We're redoing the office (yes, Mike, really we are) and figured that's the best place for them. So what do we do with them? Display them like a wallpaper border? Frame them in a poster-size frame? Give them to the puppy to chew instead of our shoes . . .and toilet paper . . .and the last roll of paper towels?

Oh, I did run the 7 miles the sushi/ice cream night. On the treadmill. Let's just say I'm never running that far on the treadmill again if I can help it.

Sunday, July 6, 2008


Why do I sabotage myself? No really, I'm asking, why? Consider the facts:

- The Marathon is less than 100 days away.

- I've known for awhile that I'm scheduled to run seven miles today.
(Note: Mike worked today starting at 6 a.m. so unless I wanted to leave a 6 year old in charge, morning run wasn't in the cards for me.)

- I've been drinking sugar-free Red Bull (not water) pretty much all day.

- I wore the crappiest, no support shoes today, despite my PF issues.
(In my defense, I did insert arch supports.)

- Even with a long run on the agenda for tonight, I had sushi for dinner. Sushi. With a lot of soy sauce that is making me extra thirsty. Oh, did I mention that I had the Tornado Sunrise? Yes, it's very spicy. And it feels like a tornado in my stomach right now.

- Yelling at myself via this blogpost won't do much for the mental stability needed for seven miles. On the freakin' treadmill.

- After sushi, I had ice cream. Chocolate chip cookie dough. Ben & Jerry's. It was the tiny three ounce version, but still.

- I didn't do one bit of laundry this weekend so the only running shorts I have clean are the ones I wore for Chicago '07. Yeah, they don't fit so well right now.

- No clean laundry means a snowball chance in hell of finding a matching pair of clean running socks in the massive Pile-O-Socks. I came close to wearing my son's Spiderman socks before I got lucky and found a pair.

So I'm drinking water like I'm cramming for a college exam right now and working to psych myself up for the treadmill.

Stupid, stupid girl.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Not Much To Report . . .

. . . Other than I ran a sucky run yesterday. Planned to run three and barely made it through two. Not a run that produces a confident Marathon runner.

Been using the oh so sexy Strassburg Sock for my plantar fasciitis (I still don't know if I'm spelling that right; too lazy right now to google it) and think I might have to spring for another one because the arch in my left foot is bothering me now too. I have a doctor appointment on July 14.

Still debating if I'm going to hop on the treadmill tonight or not. Scheduled for 7 miles tomorrow.

On a separate note, Mike and I took the kids to the zoo for a couple hours when he got home from work. I used the Nike + just because I was curious to see how far we'd walk. Guesses?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Tagged: Six Things About Me

I've been tagged by Chris so I'm going to take a break from cleaning my office (What? It's the day before the holiday.) Here are six things about me. I may regret sharing some of these.

1. My left pinkie toe is a "double toe." Picture two pinkie toes together in one toe. And, it's webbed to my fourth toe. My dad tells the story that right after I was born, the doctors said they would whisk me into surgery to correct the toe. My parents said, it's okay, she'll live with it. Maybe she'll become a great swimmer. I did not live up to that dream.

2. I hate popcorn. Love the smell, hate the taste.

3. I've never been out of the U.S. It's not that I don't want to leave the country; opportunity just hasn't presented itself. Would love to go to Europe. And Japan. And Australia.

4. I have a fear of going down escalators. I go down, but I have to pause at the top and get my bearings for a couple of seconds. This ticks people off.

5. Senior year of high school. First date. We went candlelight bowling (Only my husband, my sister and my friend Suzanne know where this is going.) In candlelight bowling you do things like holding hands while you let the ball go, or hop on one foot. In this particular instance, I had to get on the floor on my hands and knees, facing opposite the lane. First date boyfriend had to sit on my back, facing the lane. (It sounds bad but it really wasn't so get your head out of the gutter.) For some inexplicable reason, when first date boyfriend's arm came back with the bowling ball, I turned my head. CLUNK. Emergency room, minor concussion, black eye and a golf size bump on my forehead. Two weeks before prom. The bump still appears from time to time. First date boyfriend was last date boyfriend. (His choice)

6. Fast forward to college. First date with new guy. Guy I was friends with and had a crush on for a very long time. We were walking from the dorm to a restaurant and I fell flat on my face. Talking, walking, then BAM. Very embarrassed as I was trying to make a good impression. Guy was very helpful and sweet about it, didn't laugh. Fast forward 13 married years and two kids later, guy (Mike) and I are very much together :)

God, I sound like a real klutz.

Ok, I have to tag 6 people: Mike, Karin, Lisa, Kai, E and Tamara.

Here are the rules:

- Link to the person who tagged you.
- Post the rules on your blog.
- Write six random things about yourself.
- Tag six people at the end of your post.
- Let each person know they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
- Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I Heart Shopping

I stopped at one of my local running stores after work today to pick up The Strassburg Sock (very sexy, no?) in an attempt to improve my plantar fasciitis. One hundred and three dollars later, I walked out of the store, downright giddy with my new purchases. (I think it was the great philosopher Razzdoodle who once said "In theory running is cheap. In theory, communism is a great idea, too.")

My other purchases included:

New tube of Body Glide, because isn't it so annoying when it's near the end and breaks off during application? (Hopefully only runners/people who know what Body Glide are reading this because that might sound bad out of context.)

My first Chicago Marathon 2008 Training Shirt. It's pretty cool actually. Nike tech shirt, shows a girl running on the front by a skyline (not discernable as Chicago's skyline however) and it says "What Happens on the Lakefront Stays on the Lakefront. Marathon Training 2008." Back of shirt says "RUN CHI 10.12.08." I am very excited about it as I haven't seen any Chicago 08 shirts yet. Of course when I got home Mike pointed out that I'm really not training on the Lakefront (My training is pretty much down Golf Road in the NW suburbs). Whatever. (Note to VRC members: I'm trying to convince Mike to join . . .)

I think I let out an audible "What's this?!" though when I spied the Amphipod ArmPod. I love the Amphipod Handheld so I was thrilled to see this (Do I love it as much as Topher loves his fake Crocs? Still to be seen.) I hate the Armband (don't know offhand who makes it) I have now. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. Probably as much as I hate that weasel Spencer and his fake Barbie doll on that stupid MTV show. I don't watch the show but I can't seem to escape this "we're going to stop world hunger" couple. Please.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

To Run or Not to Run

That is the question.

Run: I'm in week three of Marathon Training.

Not Run: I'm really lazy and tired today.

Run: I'm not going to lose weight sitting on the couch.

Not Run: The house is a pigsty. I could clean instead.

Run: I will catch hell from the Virtual Run Club if I don't make my 4 runs this week.

Not Run: I'm pretty certain I have plantar faciitis. (That doesn't look right, but I'm too lazy to check spelling right now.) I should rest.

Run: I will probably feel less lazy after I run.

Not Run: It looks like something blew up in the laundry room. I should organize and fold laundry.

Run: About the only thing clean laundry-wise are my running clothes.

Not Run: Didn't Shakespeare say something about sleep in his Hamlet soliloquoy?

Run: Maybe it was death by sleep.

Not Run: I could run in the morning.

Run: Who am I kidding?

Not Run: Blogging takes a lot of time you know!

Run: I will really catch hell in the VRC. Especially after I called Chris a geek for all the Battlestar Galactica talk.