Saturday, May 29, 2010

my old kentucky home

(enhance the atmosphere with some background music)

dearest kentucky,

it has certainly been an interesting 494 days living in your various metropolis cities such as carrollton and danville (and frankfort). i spent a lot of time on holiday inn express and hampton inn treadmills (116 runs for 772.12 miles to be exact) when your weather was bad or there weren't many roads to run on. when i did discover routes outdoors, you certainly were gorgeous. i will miss the bluegrass pike the most; it will always be my favorite running road.

you seemed to have had it out for my car for some reason, what with the deer, locking my keys in the car, new tires, off-roading, door falling off business. i noticed you were also trying to help me fit in better with the locals, putting me in the dentist chair to have my wisdom teeth pulled, a root canal, and to fix a chipped tooth.

although most days i whined about you, you're a pretty good state overall. the countryside is beautiful and the people are friendly. i found a few awesome places to run and some cool people to run with on occasion. i even squeezed in three marathons while i was here. i toured a bourbon distillery, flew over louisville in a bi-plane and attended the famous kentucky derby.

i missed being away from home and i hated all the driving up and down i-75 (approximately 10,820 miles), but it did give me the excuse to eat (too many) m&m's so that i'd stay awake on the drive. i never did get to go horse back riding this spring because you were busy raining every weekend i stayed in town. i'm also a little disappointed that i never actually saw blue grass. what the heck is that all about?

thanks for the memories kentucky. it was fun, most days.

much love.

[side note:  if you are ever in need of chiropractic care in the central kentucky area, i highly recommend dr. pat drury (lawrenceburg) and dr. alex louden (lexington) - they took good care of me over the past year!]

Friday, May 28, 2010

this is it

today is friday.
may 28th, two thousand ten.

but more importantly...

it's my last day working in kentucky!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ps: like a week ago i got a package from jill -- m&m's! i'd post a picture but... i ate them too quickly :) thanks jill! i also stumbled across some random facts about m&m's here while enjoying jill's present. i sure love m&m's, but we knew that already.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

in which garmin decides to be my friend

because i had another quality workout on tap, i decided to try the whole "create a workout in the garmin training center and send it to my watch" business again.

last time: fail. this time: victory!

i swear i did the same things this time around as the last but who knows.

in the garmin training center, i went to workouts - new workout - created the steps (intervals) - and added it to the calendar. with the ant+ stick plugged in, i clicked "send to device", and after a few moments ol' garmin beeped to signal that it was establishing a connection with my computer.

that thing was so nifty! i didn't have to look at my watch once - it beeped at me each time i was switching from interval to recovery and back again. after i finished the last step of the workout it beeped at me so much i thought it was playing a song. i hope i can set up my other workouts in the future... so easy to just run and not worry about making sure you stop/start on time.

today's workout was 5x1000, and i must be drinking the motivation juice because once again i didn't wimp out on any intervals. (i've done that a lot in the past, so i have to give myself credit for not doing it!) my goal pace was 4:12/1000m (6:45/mile pace), and i was only off on 2/5 reps this time. i also got up and out the door before 5am; i'm feeling very accomplished.

and i just realized this workout isn't actually scheduled until june 15th. way to go me.

1000's - 4:10, 4:12, 4:17 *legs woke up and were not happy, 4:20 *more rebellion, 4:11
avg 4:14/1000m (6:48 mile/pace), avg/max hr (169/191)

**giveaway coming in a few days!**

Sunday, May 23, 2010

see you in another life, brotha

i scraped together a decent amount of mileage the past two weeks. i wish i was doing more, but i'll take what i can get. hopefully it'll continue to increase instead of my typical slacking off...

week in review (5/10 - 5/16):
total miles: 33.50 (avg temp 69* f)
time spent running: ~ 5 hours 5 minutes
avg hr: 162
avg run pace: 9:06/mile
off days: 1

week in review (5/17 - 5/23):
total miles: 33.30 (avg temp 66.8* f)
time spent running: ~ 5 hours 22 minutes
avg hr: 162
avg run pace: 8:58/mile
off days: 2

this was week one of 'general' training and i already skipped a quality workout. i went to charleston, sc for a friend's wedding and all the traveling and festivities made me extra lazy on friday. i did still get in my long run though!

it may be pathetic, but i'm planting myself on the couch tonight for the 4.5-hr LOST recap and finale instead of squeezing in a few more miles. gonna miss this crazy show!

*eta: don't worry LOST catcher-uppers - i won't post any spoilers!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

approaching turn

after being a *bit* lazy friday, i summoned myself out of bed this morning for my long run. it was about 66 degrees but muggy and humid. i've been blessed with a mini-cool front all week in kentucky with temps in the 60s and not humid. i guess it's about time i get used to the good ol' heavy, sticky air.

about 8-9 miles into the run it started raining. thank god. if it's going to be this humid anyway it may as well rain and keep me cool-ish. unfortunately previous experiences have taught me that my garmin is a diva and does not enjoy the rain. i have no idea what happened but at one point i looked down and there was a compass on my screen. erm ok. i turned it back to the regular time/pace/distance screen and periodically it would beep at me and flash "approaching turn". most of the time this happened at points where there was a street to actually turn on to, but a few times it wanted me to go off-roading.

where's my manual... apparently i have a lot of learning to do.

super slow 12+ miles overall, just couldn't get the legs to turnover today :-/ but i'm little miss positive thinker lately and am just glad i got out for a long run, no matter how slow.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

garmin 101

ok garmin runners... i need some tutoring. how do you program & upload workouts into it? (i have the 405, if that makes a difference). i tried putting the program into the garmin training center on my computer and then hitting "send to device" but it appears nothing was sent to my watch. yes, the ant+ stick was plugged in to the computer.

yesterday (tuesday) was my first quality workout in a very long time (umm october '09). i thought i'd be all high-tech and program it into my garmin so that i didn't have to go to the track, but of course i didn't get that working right. i still didn't really want to run circles so i geeked out and put on a second stopwatch. (i'm also not very good with hitting the split/lap button on garmin...) ghetto, but it worked out.

so yeah... advice welcome. wearing two watches is dorky :)

i had 10x400 on the schedule and actually did all 10. i'm notorious for finding some excuse to cut out reps, but i persevered for the day. my goal pace was 1:36/400m (6:26/mile pace) and i was off on 9/10 reps (hah), but i didn't dwell on it because it was my first real workout in a loooong time. i figure that's a good enough reason.

400's - 1:40, 1:41, 1:35 *yay*, 1:42, 1:40, 1:39, 1:46 *yikes*, 1:39, 1:44, 1:40
avg 1:41/400m (6:46/mile pace), avg/max hr 170/193

not great vs. goal pace, but definitely a step in the right direction.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

back to jack

after taking the rest of april completely off after bostonkentucky derby, i resumed running on may 1st. nothing stellar, nothing fast, nothing long... nothing exciting really. i've been feeling slow on my daily runs and then when i really started to think about it, i haven't done a whole lot of speedwork since before nyc last november. i did some threshold runs and intervals in january/february, but it could've been better. i'm planning on making up with my buddy jack daniels' and following his "general training" gold plan for a few weeks to get some structured speed work in. no, no crazy anal training plan, just a little structure. hopefully.

week in review (5/3 - 5/9):
total miles: 23.90 (avg temp 76.2* f)
time spent running: ~ 3 hours 35 minutes
avg hr: 162
avg run pace: 9:03/mile
off days: 2

i was on track for a decent week of mileage, and then skipped my 'long' (10mi) run. whoops.

because the single ladies seem to be a recurring act here... check out these girls. they have amazing dance talent but, um, slightly too young?

Friday, May 7, 2010

domestication take 2

for the record, one definition of "domesticated" per urban dictionary says "gettin civilized. stop sellin drugs, goin back to school, and gettin everything str8 wit yo baby's momma!!!!!!!!!"

something like that... in my sweet, innocent, drug-less world i recently found myself tinkering in the kitchen again. i feel compelled to learn some sort of domestication before tying the knot. i make a pretty good homemade pizza, and while i know josh wouldn't mind eating pizza every night, i think i need to master some other dishes.

i forget where i first read about it, but i've been meaning to try my hand at spaghetti squash for a little while. thankfully the food store clearly labels the spaghetti squash, otherwise i definitely would not have known what to buy. i'm still not very skilled in this department of home ec (or any department for that matter).

i googled "how to cook spaghetti squash" and easily settled on the nuke for 10-12 minutes option. although recipes often say "only x minutes of prep time", i can guarantee that i will need to at least double it. the other options were to boil for like 30-45 minutes (my "furnished" apartment doesn't have a big enough pot) or to bake for an hour.

after microwaving, i removed the seeds and pulp. it wasn't easy with it all tangled together. (please pardon the crappy i-phone pictures).

left side still needs to be de-pulped.

then i took a fork and scraped out the noodles. in some areas it came off easier than others... i am assuming that is from not cooking long enough? after a while i got tired of scraping and had a tupperware full of noodles, so i quit. i think if i had pasta-tongs (and cooked it longer) it would not have been such a battle.

that's probably too much left in there huh? oh well.

in the end, the spaghetti squash turned out alright. some parts were little crunchy, but from what i read that's common. effort wise, i would just stick to pasta noodles in a box!! health wise, spaghetti squash is the way to go at only 40 calories per cup. oh, and all those other nutrients and stuff too. money wise, i think this squash cost me $5-6 and i can probably get 3 servings out of what i scooped out. perhaps had i scraped and/or cooked it longer i could've gotten 4-5 servings.

it felt like it took forever, but i'd still like to make it again with the bake or boil option instead with hopes that it won't be as hard to scoop. this time i just topped it with spaghetti sauce out of laziness, but i'd like to try it with spinach, tomatoes and maybe some feta cheese. we'll have to see; i'm no rachel ray.

i also separated all the pulp gunk from the seeds and roasted them. bonus: seeds are a decent source of protein! (i have been slacking way too much on protein)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

indianapolis monumental marathon & half

thinking about signing up for the indianapolis monumental half- or full marathon? (held nov 6th)

use coupon code "Loverunning" when registering to receive a $5 discount. must register by may 17th!

register here.

[this is a very reasonably priced race - current rates (w/o discount): full $60, half $50. i haven't run this particular race, i just have a coupon for it.]

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

head case: update

me: hey when you come up can you bring my jack daniels' book?
josh: translation... you want to run another marathon already

yes... but no. while i am rejuvenated mentally about running, my legs still feel slow and heavy. i am anxious to get into "training mode" again, and i am excited that my motivation is up again. i've been in a little funk since august/september-ish ('09) and never really climbed out of that ditch. hopefully i'm back on high ground for good, and that i can keep my vertigo-situation in check.

i hadn't updated about my mri results because they came back "normal". {yeah yeah, insert wise comments here.} thanks to all though for showing concern. guess i need to find something else to blame my spacey-ness on when i zone out from conversations. :o) it was still cool to have the procedure done, although it would be great if they could do it for less than $2,400 (donations accepted).

the ent doc is still on his meniere's-disease kick and wants me to limit salt in my diet and possibly go on a "water pill" that is typically used for people with high blood pressure. (so what does that do to people without high bp?) umm thanks, but no thanks. i don't think i eat a lot of salty foods, so i'm not (currently) changing anything there either.

on sunday i felt general nausea/dizziness in my head (vs. stomach, if that makes sense) for the better part of the day. in the evening i decided to lay on a golf ball and work out some tension in my left shoulder (my shoulders get knots easily). after a few (5-10) minutes of painful pleasure, i noticed i felt a little better.

my chiropractor has said all along that the vertigo/nausea/dizziness could be related to an atlas subluxation (misalignment). the atlas is the top vertebrae of the spine, surrounding the brain stem and supporting the skull. a subluxation here can affect signals from the brain that travel through the nervous system that feeds all parts of the body. every time i go in for an adjustment (roughly 2x/month), i need one on my atlas/c-1 vertebrae, so it'd be nice to figure out what i'm doing that knocks it off-center. then perhaps i can eliminate the vertigo and maybe even have less shoulder tension. ohh that'd be so nice (and josh's elbow would appreciate it too).

at least now i know i don't have a brain tumor, and it certainly won't hurt to continue getting adjusted. maybe if i had stayed on top of the gentle neck-exercises (to stretch/strengthen) given to me by a "substitute" chiropractor up here in kentucky last fall i wouldn't be in this predicament today. i'm sure my poor posture at the computer all day doesn't help my shoulders either.

i know i'm not a doctor or a professional in the medical field. personally i prefer a more 'natural' option of health-care, but i know everyone and every disease is different. obviously when i need medical-help, i have gone/will continue to go for it. that is why i have had the ear ringing/dizziness/nausea/vertigo evaluated by a general practitioner, chiropractor, ear-nose-throat doc and an mri. (and why my allergist is practically on speed dial).

Sunday, May 2, 2010

bahston: boil ya wahtah

it has been raining (and t-storming) for two days straight, which made for a gross weekend and less running that i had hoped. i'm sure i'm better off with a little extra rest, and i'm glad i wasn't out running the flying pig in the pouring rain. today alone we got over 5". how much rain can clouds hold exactly?

saturday (5/1) afternoon run in the rain, between t-storms: 4.9 miles
sunday (5/2) thundered & rained out: max cardio conditioning & cardio abs dvd

an apartment complex 3 blocks/streets over
photo by amnews

oh breaking news update: we are now in a state of emergency and are not supposed to go anywhere. does this mean i don't have to go to work tomorrow?

anyway. here are the better action shots from the boston marathon. josh was able to get a few photos of the elites as he waited for my slow butt to trot by.

photo by josh

i think the guy in the lead eventually won?
meb hanging on to the pack.
photo by josh

photo by josh
contain yourselves :)

photo by josh

the yellow strip on the street is the finish line
photo by josh

the darn citgo sign
photo by josh

five most memorable/favorite things i saw during the race:
  1. biker bar in ashland - i wanted to stop and party with them. yeah, so what if they're at mile 2?
  2. "forget the volcano, run your ashes off" - sign entering framingham
  3. various spectators keeping score (chalk) boards for the sox game
  4. "shortcut" (with a big arrow) - big banner on a house, i want to say in natick? and yes, i was tempted!
  5. bc students. loved their enthusiasm. (go acc!)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

april 2010

april 2009
total mileage: 173.13
time spent running: 24:17:07
days off: 4 (2 planned, 2 not)
abs/yoga: 6 ab workouts / 0 yoga sessions
avg resting hr: 58 (only checked it twice all month)
avg max hr: 184.00
avg temp: 70.90*
pushups: 590

april 2010
total mileage: 155.81
time spent running: 23:39:55
days off: 13! (however 10 of those were my post-marathon(s) right to be lazy)
abs/yoga: 8 ab workouts/1 yoga session
avg resting hr: 57 (finally started checking it again)
avg max hr: 180.08
avg temp: 70.29*
pushups: 460

i've now been working in kentucky for over a year, even though i was originally sent up here for "2-3 weeks". i'm not sure what kind of calendar my company uses.

i took 4 days off completely after boston and 6 after kentucky. i was tempted to run, but i told myself to enjoy being lazy while i could. my legs were sore and stiff for a day after each race, but quickly cleared up. thankfully nothing hurt from my little running experiment, and i'm raring to get back to running this weekend if these t-storms ever let up.

don't worry, i'm *not* hopping into the flying pig marathon on sunday to go 3-for-3. i was tempted...