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Thursday, December 27, 2007

2007: Fitness Year in Review

Reviewing...
2006 in Review / 2007 Goals (12/27/2006)
2005 in Review / 2006 Goals (12/26/2005)
2005 Goals (12/26/2004)

10 Commandments of Kim's Weight Loss (12/26/2004)

Three years ago, I pledged to get serious about diet and exercise. Since then, I've made it a priority to re-commit myself every December 26. It's been an interesting three years. I first was extremely successful, losing 30 pounds, getting myself geared up to run marathons, and being very consistent with the working out. I fell off the wagon a bit in 2006, between moving out of my house and starting marathon training. In 2007, I had some great goals and failed to meet most of them (yep, let's be honest with that). Working out, losing weight and whatnot were not my top priorities for this year, but I still struggled with it somehow all year long.

So, let's review...

Review of Fitness Goals for 2007 (How I did)...
Diet - Starting January 10 (first available day after the marathon), begin tracking foods again. For this year, just get back into maintaining calories and tracking food. Try to increase fiber and decrease sugar.
I did track foods for a while, and I tracked foods on and off all year. I can't say I did it with any consistency beyond February. My diet was horrible, horrible, horrible this year. I can't even be positive at all about it, there is nothing good to say about how I ate this year.
Weight Loss - Get weight back to 155. Shoot for a weight of 150 by the end of the year. Size goal is Old Navy size 10 (current size is 12).
I managed to maintain my weigh this year. This is a success, given how horrible my diet was. My weight as of last week was the exact same as it was the day I ran the Disney Marathon. I've probably gained a pound or two over Christmas, but that will [hopefully] come off quickly. If I can't lose weight, at least I'm not gaining. So, goal not met, but success nonetheless.
Running - Run the Disney Marathon in January and the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler in April. Keep a base mileage of 10-13 miles. Run the Annapolis 10 Miler in August and potentially a half or full marathon in the fall. Achieve a 9 minute mile
Nope. I did run the Disney Marathon. I did not run the Cherry Blossom 10 miler. I did run a lot of races (including the Annapolis 10 miler), and completed my third marathon in October. I did not get a 9 minute mile, although we really didn't do miracle miles past July, so I didn't get the chance.

It's hard to stay positive about running when 2007 was just a bad year for it. I ran a lot of races, the exact schedule I ran in 2006, but I had no PRs and in fact some of my worst times ever - Worst 5k time ever (Pikesville), worst marathon time ever (Marine Corps), worst 10k time ever (Race for Our Kids), worst 10 miler time (Annapolis). Granted, a lot of those races were just the second time I'd completed one, but Pikesville was a big disappointment.
Workouts - Obviously continue running. Begin Cathe rotations again starting January 10 (take it easy for a couple weeks post-marathon, but work up to what I was doing early 2006). Goal of 30+ minutes per day, 5-6 days per week. 45 minutes per day, 6 days per week is ideal.
I kept up with the Cathe workouts into February, but dropped working out entirely somewhere around the end of February. I picked up running again in May, and added cross-training, but leaving my job and starting a new job, and Todd doing the same, created some serious changes in my schedule and what I was capable of doing. I am still trying to work around this.
Weights and Muscle Tone - Regain muscle tone in upper body. Work up to equal the weight that I was using for workouts in March 2006. Find a way to work weights into my marathon training, if I choose to run a marathon in the fall
I tried. I did get some weights in here and there, but I'm still working to get this done consistently.

My lessons for 2007:
  • When weight loss isn't a priority, it doesn't happen.
  • Weight loss during marathon training requires cross-training.
  • Motivation is often hard, and sometimes all you can do is stay on course and not get too off track.
  • Do not schedule a race after your second marathon when your significant other is not intending to run that race with you, and you're used to having him run with you.
Specific Successes for 2007:
  • Cathe lower body workouts in January with no loss of muscle tone from the last time I did them (9 months earlier)
  • Jeff Galloway Marathon training
  • Three 5k races (Gasparilla in February, Shamrock in March and Pikesville in July)
  • One 10k race (Race for Our Kids in June)
  • Annapolis 10 Mile Run
  • Marine Corps Marathon
  • Short-lived habit of swimming laps, first time ever!
  • 62 Scuba dives (for calendar year 2007, I completed 8 in 2006)
Kim's Fitness Goals for 2008
  • Diet - Day one of tracking foods is today. Diet is not the number one priority, but tracking foods should be good enough. Hopefully, get the workouts going and the diet will follow.
  • Weight Loss - No specific weight loss goals this year, as I am trying to take the focus off of the number on the scale. If the workouts come, the diet will follow and weight loss is surely to be the result. At a minimum, maintain around 170 pounds.
  • Running - Run the Disney Marathon in January. Run a half marathon in the fall. NO MORE FULL MARATHONS for 2008. Keep up with 2-3 runs per week, and a base of only about 6 miles through the spring. Potentially run the Jacksonville Breast Cancer half marathon in February, although that is partially up in the air.
  • Workouts - Goal of 30 minutes per day, 5 days per week, starting today. Focus on running and upper body weight training through the disney marathon. If we are running the Breast cancer race, keep the focus of running through then. Mix in Cathe rotations post-Disney to add variety. Any workout will do.
  • Weights and Muscle Tone - Regain muscle tone in upper body. Work up to equal the weight that I was using for workouts in March 2006.
There you have it. This was a rough one to write, with little success, but I recognize my failures and I'm moving on appropriately.

SOLD OUT - Calendars

Our 2008 Calendars are sold out, however you can still get one on backorder!  Just email me and I'll send it out!

Back at Work...

And I have Christmas details to write in my private blog, and fitness details to write in the public one.  Stay tuned...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Good News for Friday

  1. Japan is not going to hunt whales
  2. I'm in my taper for Disney
  3. I'm ready for Christmas
  4. Tonight from Netflix: Superbad!
  5. Santa brought me an iPod touch and a dive watch! (Santa and I were too excited to wait for Christmas)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Review: Bear Naked Products

So, a friend at work gave me a bag of Bear Naked Trail Mix (Appalachian Trail Flavor).  Tasty, tasty, tasty, with craisins and nuts and a good flavor without being overly sugary.  I hate more processed trail mixes that contain chocolate chips and other not so healthy things.  What a great way to get protein!  He had purchased it at Giant,  but then when I was at Weis recently I found some Bear Naked Granola (Peak Protein flavor).  I was surprised to find it at Weis, who isn't known for having my favorite healthy brands (why don't they carry Luna bars??).  Anyway, the granola was just as tasty.  I've had it all this week for breakfast with a half point of 2% milk purchased out of our vending machine at work.  It keeps me full until lunch time and tastes good too!

Thumbs up!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Next Up...

Turks and Caicos, Spring/Summer 2008. Booked the trip tonight! Huzzah!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Diving: One Year

I'm no longer a guppy!
Yesterday, December 16, was my first anniversary of being a certified Open Water Scuba Diver (I had originally thought it was the 14th, but in fact the 14th was the day I left for Key Largo to get my certification). What a year!! I've taken 4 (yes, FOUR) dive trips, and completed 70 open water dives. That many dives in one year, ESPECIALLY the first year of diving, is unprecidented.

What I've found is that I very much enjoy diving. I knew I wanted to try it, but I really didn't realize how much I would like it until we were in Bonaire in May. Yes, I'd already dove in Key Largo, St. Thomas and Epcot Center before that, but those only accounted for a total of 9 dives, where in Bonaire we were diving 3 times a day. The other thing is - I'm actually GOOD at diving. There's nothing I'm good at. I'm a horrible runner, a horrible singer, terrible dancer, hideous artist, and I generally suck at any and all team sports I've attempted. But diving? I get compliments! For an hour dive, I average about 1200 pounds of air still in my tank when I get on the boat (and I'm getting better... I've nearly surpassed Todd in air consumption, but we're about equal right now).

Todd wants me to start carrying a camera while I dive, but I've never fancied myself a photographer. And, I kind of like just having a photographer along. For now, I just dive and enjoy and watch.

So, 2007 was an unusual year for getting diving (and vacations) in. We're looking at less diving time in 2008, but certainly we should be able to manage at least 50 dives this year if everything goes to plan. Perhaps more, who knows? That's right, we're about ready to book our next trip - spring/summer 2008, which will be in the Caribbean. And, I think we might (it's a big might, and it relies on information I only got today) be able to go to the Pacific in the fall...

Hooray for finally finding something I'm good at!


Todd, Kim & a Turtle in Little Cayman (November)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Bug Says Merry Christmas!!

And he wants to do a little dance for you!!

Here he is!

That's a major time killer. But honestly, I've tried it on several groups of people and there is no way anyone can beat Jim and DaveW for genuine comedy... FABULOUS!

Here we are as well.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Food Miles

Interesting article on the food miles concept, which has been on my mind a lot lately.... (Guilt over California Strawberries eaten in December...)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Following Songs are NOT Christmas Carols...

  1. My Favorite Things - What, they mention snow and presents so it's automatically a Christmas song?
  2. Linus & Lucy - I realize that the Peanuts made a Christmas Movie. The Brady Bunch made a Christmas special, but I don't see anyone playing THEIR theme song on Christmas music stations.
  3. Let it Snow - I let this one slide. However, theoretically, you should be able to play this one in January and no one should say anything.

That is all.

Got It Right This Time

by Keith Urban

I love this song.  I heard it once last week and then I just heard it when I was going out to grab lunch.  Sometimes, you have to listen to something a few times to like it, but this one I fell in love with the first time I heard it.  Now, if I could just remember to get it off of iTunes...

She believes in me like I've been tryin' to do,
I'm seein' things I've never seen before,
Ever since you came into my life I've been a better man.

Run, Run, Run, I was running scared,
Always lookin' for a place to leave,
And I couldn't seem to find where I belonged,
Until she took my hand.

We can make this work out Baby, I know it's true.
I can't picture myself, with no one but you,
And I think I got it right, this time.

All of my life I've been lookin' for someone,
Who believes in love the way I do,
And I know I've make my share of big mistakes,
But Girl I promise you,

We can make this work out Baby, I know it's true.
I can't picture myself, with no one but you,
And I think I got it right, this time.

True belivers always find each other,
And here we are.
Always knew that you were out there just waitin' on me,
For me to find my way,
Find my way to your heart,
Oh Yeah.

We can make this work out Baby, I know it's true.
I can't picture myself, with no one but you,
And I think I got it right, this time.

After all the crazy days,
I made it through.
I can't picture myself with no one but you,
And I think I got it right, this time.

2008 Calendars For Sale

Get yours today!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Recipe: Raspberry Poppyseed Salad

This is what I took to the Very Nickish Christmas Party last night...

Raspberry Poppyseed Salad

... plus Boordy Chilled Apple wine.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

My how times change...

Last week....

Kim relaxes in a hammock...


This week...


Todd greets Kim after work...

Blah, snow in the neighborhood...

(
I took a bunch of photos, but they all generally suck because I was also trying to drive. But if you want to see a great picture of Jos A. Bank covered in snow, I have one...)

Monday, December 3, 2007

Little Cayman, November 2007

Kim and Todd took a trip to Little Cayman island, November 23 to December 2, 2007.  We'd been there in June/July 2007 and needed to return for more fun and to see many of the friends that we met before!

Photos

Topside Photos - Courtesy of Kim (and some are by Todd)

Underwater Photos - Courtesy of Todd (underwater photos are Copyright Todd Krebs, 2007.  All rights reserved.)

The Resort

We returned to Southern Cross Club Fish and Dive Resort.  It only has 12 rooms, this time our room was in the "Yellow" new cottage.  We were on the top floor for our first 2 nights, and then moved downstairs for the rest of our stay.  We loved the room and had beautiful views from our room out onto the beach.

When we weren't diving, we were resting in the resort's hammocks or Todd could frequently be found playing ring game in the main building (his record is 6 in a row!!). 

Food was much the same as before... healthy things served by Chef Ron.  We had breakfast, lunch and dinner included in our stay.  Omlettes for breakfast, sandwiches or other snacky things for lunch.  Dinners were fish or pork or chicken.  Sometimes dinner was a buffet, sometimes it was a sit down dinner. 

So, a basic day was...

6:00am - Wake up, get ready
6:30am - Actually get out of bed and get ready
7:00am - Breakfast
8:00am - Dive boat departs for 2 tank dives
12:30pm - Back at the resort, have lunch.
2:00pm - Hammock and resting on the beach
4:00pm - Dusk Dive (or, one night we went on a night dive)
6:00pm or so - Cocktail hour
7:00pm - Dinner
8:30pm - Hanging out on the dock under the [full] moon or stars
10:00pm - Back in the room for relaxation / bedtime

New Friends

We met Matt and Ellen (from Indiana) when we visited in July, and they were back again, arriving on Wednesday.  We also met some new friends - Bill and Gerry (also from Indiana), Ann and Paul and family (from Minneapolis), Valerie and Chris (from Pennsylvania) and Tim and Julie (from Texas).

Diving

We completed 21 dives.  We arrived at the resort on Friday the 23rd at 4:30pm, but did not have the opportunity to dive the first day like we did the last time.  Our first two diving days we did 2 morning dives, then we did either a dusk dive (4 total) or a night dive (only 1) on all of the other days when we could.  Dusk dives are a lot of fun and an opportunity to see the 4 F's: Fighting, Feeding, Fleeing and Fornicating... :)

Our divemasters were Mark (from London, whom we met last time), Mike (from The Netherlands, awesome at picking out small things), Ryan (from New York), and Chris (manager of the resort and a big fan of swim throughs).  Things we saw on our dives included nurse sharks, Hawksbill Turtles (lots of those!), Caribbean Reef Sharks, Shy Hamlet, Nassau Grouper, lots of Lobsters, Squirrelfish, lots of Barracuda, and many other beautiful fishes and corals.


Back From Hiatus...

I was out of town, getting some much needed sun.  But I'm back.  While I was gone, I had no access to television (there were no televisions whatsoever), phones (no phones), and barely any access to the internet (I maybe spent 15 minutes on the internet total, and most of that was devoted to my Fantasy Football team...).  Thoughts...

  1. Where did the leaves go???
  2. There was an earthquake in the Caribbean???  I had no idea.  I was pretty far from Martinique, and at the time it happened I was sound asleep in a hammock.  No one even mentioned it though.
  3. Coming back to cold was not nearly as bad as I thought it would be.
  4. Charlotte is a nice airport.
  5. I guess it's time for Christmas shopping, huh?
  6. My one year anniversary of being a certified scuba diver is 12/14 and in that time (just under a year), I have completed 70 dives, more than many divers complete in a lifetime.  I have more to say on scuba and will be crafting a scuba diving post in the near future.
  7. Back at work with a smile on my face and everything is right in the world... :)

Huzzah!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Whole Wide World

by Wreckless Eric

When I was a young boy
My mama said to me
There's only one girl in the world for you
And she probably lives in Tahiti

I'd go the whole wide world
I'd go the whole wide world
Just to find her

Or maybe she's in the Bahamas
Where the Carribean sea is blue
Weeping in a tropical moonlit night
Because nobody's told her 'bout you

I'd go the whole wide world
I'd go the whole wide world
Just to find her
I'd go the whole wide world
I'd go the whole wide world
Find out where they hide her

Why am I hanging around in the rain out here
Trying to pick up a girl
Why are my eyes filling up with these lonely tears
When there're girls all over the world

Is she lying on a tropical beach somewhere
Underneath the tropical sun
Pining away in a heatwave there
Hoping that I won't be long

I should be lying on that sun-soaked beach with her
Caressing her warm brown skin
And then in a year or maybe not quite
We'll be sharing the same next of kin

I'd go the whole wide world
I'd go the whole wide world
Just to find her
I'd go the whole wide world
I'd go the whole wide world
Find out where they hide her

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

He's Very Professional...


A new tie for The Bug. And he looks thrilled, huh?

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!!!!!!!

Hope your turkey day is lovely!

Bless The Broken Road

by Rascall Flatts

...Sometimes you have to forget what you've lost to appreciate what you have...

I set out on a narrow way many years ago,
Hoping I would find true love along the broken road,
But I got lost a time or two,
Wiped my brow and kept pushing through.
I couldn't see how every sign pointed straight to you.

That every long lost dream led me to where you are,
Others who broke my heart, they were like northern stars,
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms.
This much I know is true,
That God blessed the broken road,
That led me straight to you.

I think about the years I spent just passing through.
I'd like to have the time I lost and give it back to you,
But you just smile and take my hand,
You've been there you understand,
It's all part of a grander plan that is coming true.

Every long lost dream led me to where you are.
Others who broke my heart they were like northern stars,
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms.
This much I know is true,
That God blessed the broken road,
That led me straight to you.

Now I'm just rolling home,
Into my lover's arms.
This much I know is true,
That God blessed the broken road,
That led me straight to you.

That God blessed the broken road,
That led me straight to you.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Taxes

Let's really talk about this.  Let's not even worry about who is at fault, but let's look at the solution and what happened.

  1. We had a budget deficit.
  2. We knew we had a budget deficit for a while, as was stated in the comments to my last post on the subject.
  3. We knew we had a budget deficit BEFORE the last regular general assembly met, which ended in April.
  4. We didn't fully address the deficit THEN, so we had to do a special session, which COST a bunch more money, ADDING TO THE DEFICIT.
  5. The 2-week special session lasted 3+ weeks, COSTING US MORE MONEY.
  6. SLOTS could help the deficit, but the voters are going to vote on it, so we're not even VOTING on it until 11/2008.  In the meantime, Former Gov. Ehrlich wanted slots THREE YEARS AGO, but the democrats opposed it and wouldn't even send it to referendum, so while that might have helped us to reduce the deficit over a minimum of the last year, now we're waiting even longer.
  7. Several people who were opposed to slots while Ehrlich was governor have now CHANGED THEIR STANCE... ??  Politics!
  8. They waffled about what they were going to tax.  It ended up that a bunch of stuff got both taken out and put into the bill at the LAST MINUTE when no one could lobby.
Computer consulting is now being taxed at 6%.  STARTING JANUARY FIRST.  Now, I'm not a consultant right now, but I have been in the past.  Let's think about what this means for a consultant.
  1. Starting in a mere FORTY-TWO days, they will have to start charging their clients a 6% sales tax, or else pay it out of pocket. 
  2. Consultants are easily dispensable, and tend to get fired quickly.  6% is a lot.  Customer doesn't want to pay, then guess what?  You're paying out of pocket.  So, while the Baltimore Sun claims that Martin O'Malley was trying to tax "Big Corporations," they can simply choose not to pay by either having their consultants pay it themselves or fire their consultants.  Neither hurts "big corporations" all that much.
  3. Then guess what?  They pay THAT, which amounts to income tax if the customer won't pay, or else they lower their rates, and then THEY PAY AN ADDITIONAL 1% SALES TAX ON WHAT THEY PURCHASE!!!
  4. Not to mention that income tax is going up also.
Computer professionals are already having trouble keeping their jobs, because so many are going overseas.  This is only going to make it worse, and what's more, it's happening almost over night.

ARE YOU SERIOUSLY TELLING ME THAT THERE WAS NO WHERE ELSE TO CUT SPENDING??????????????  YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME.  This bill even includes expanding health coverage.  DO NOT expand spending while you introduce the largest tax hike in Maryland history.  It is TOTAL INSANITY.

From the Washington Post... "House leaders want to double the state's hotel tax from 5 to 10 percent, a provision not in the Senate bill. The proceeds would be directed to a new fund that would pay for tourism, arts and cultural initiatives."  WHAT?????  WHAT WHAT WHAT?????????????  Are you f*cking kidding me???  Art and culture?  Yeah, because people are already tripping over themselves to visit MARYLAND, I'm sure doubling the tax would help...  And who the hell increases art and tourism spending when you're trying to cut the budget??  Would this spending be like the commercials I've seen for California and Louisiana lately advertising THEM?  Do you really think people go, "well shit, I'm going to California now!"  OMG, I can hardly type straight.

But see, if this bill ends up eliminating jobs for people like me, it will do so indirectly, so the politicians won't be directly at fault/blamed.  We don't want to cut spending by eliminating jobs directly, after all. 

Maryland reminds me of the over-spending slacker with too much credit card debt... In order to pay the debt, he doesn't stop buying things, going to bars and partying!  Oh, no, he asks all of his relatives for money. 

I'm so disgusted.  Some of my computer friends are talking about moving out of state.  I am, as always, considering Florida as an alternative (except Florida will be underwater soon...).  At least I can go ahead and vote to kick these dickheads out of power.

Maybe I'm not as liberal as I thought.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Once Again...

This recipe got rave reviews.  It was for Potluck Lunch Day (see my Twitter about how Potluck Lunch Day at my company is like Pretzel Day on The Office.  A LOT like Pretzel Day...).  This time, I decorated the cupcakes with my company logo, which is easy to draw.  And I got icing that was easier to use than the stuff I used for Superbowl.

Friday, November 9, 2007

ON NOTICE: Martin O'Malley

I loved him.  I wanted him to be president.

And I won't lie and say that part of my opinion of him lately is based on the Martin O'Malley-like character on The Wire.  But, he's really just done a piss-assed job since he got into the Governor's office.

Keep in mind that I used to work in the Governor's office under Glendening (ugh).  I saw so much waste, so many things that were done for no reason at all except to spend money (or so it looked like to my high school eyes).  Part of my job was to make 250 photo copies a day of about 100 different news clippings clipped out of newspapers, and then interoffice them and fedex them to people in Annapolis and around the state.  That was 1995/96, so let's hope that part of the office has gone electronic.

I KNOW there are things that can be cut out of the budget.  You want to bring in slots AND raise taxes???  Are you KIDDING ME?????????  Where did Ehrich's money go??  I mean, I can't 100% trust the republicans to say what is going on, but it does seem like we were in better shape and then Martin did NO work on anything and now suddenly is like "oh shit, we've got a deficit!"  And the deficit is being RAISED by the special session he called...

It's mind blowing.  I can't fathom how insane this is.

You just don't raise a bunch of taxes when (in my opinion), we're on the verge of a recession.  We're trying to avoid recession and he wants to raise taxes.  And even worse, he wants to do it to things like lawn services and hair services - small businesses that are having a hard enough time in economic slow downs.  These are the people who need the cash the most.  Are we raising taxes, then putting them out of business, and then we get to support them with state money that we got from raising taxes??  Is that what this is??

More on this later (I'll edit this), but I have a meeting that I must get to.  But, everyday I get more and more angry over this stuff.  And don't get me started on GW Bush's comment yesterday, "You can't be president and the head of the military at the same time..."  UGH.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Remember, Remember... A later date

Sadly, Bonfire night was rained out, but we will be celebrating "Guy Fawkes Night (Observed)" on the next clear night. The good news is that I got to watch Heroes and Weeds, but I think I lost in Fantasy Football.

UPDATE: No! I won! Huzzah!

Monday, November 5, 2007

November 5th

What to do, what to do...
  1. Ravens Game
  2. Heroes
  3. Weeds
  4. Bonfire Night
Hm.

Well, Weeds will be on again tomorrow night, Heroes usually reruns on the internet (and hasn't been that good lately anyway), the Ravens play every week and seem to have better luck when I don't watch...

But BONFIRE NIGHT is ONLY ONE NIGHT A YEAR!!

Fire on the deck... fire on the deck... bottle of wine...  blankets...  starlight...

I'm way excited.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Thoughts: Picketing at Funerals

So, this happened in Westminster (yay!  Right in my backyard!)

  1. I have really been disliking religious fundamentalists of late.
  2. I completely disagree and dislike what they were saying - that God is punishing the US for its tolerance of homosexuality.
  3. It was totally inappropriate to protest at a funeral - ESPECIALLY one of a serviceman.
All of that being said, I believe STRONGLY in the first amendment and even if I hate everything these people are saying (and I do!!), if they're doing it peacefully and in a public place, they're not breaking any laws.  Constitutionally, don't they have the right to protest, even if their protest is inappropriate?  And is $10 million appropriate for "emotional distress"?  Asking for such a large settlement just makes the father of the soldier greedy.

So, I'm sorry that he lost his son and I am VERY sorry that people ruined his son's funeral, but I have to side with the church on this one.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Crazy Runner Chick!

Yep, that's me.  Here's my quotes...

During the Marathon:
"I'm certainly not running Disney.  I guess I can drop out.  Just go as a vacation, since I've got a plane ticket and a hotel room.  I can just support Todd.  That will be fun.  I'm never running another marathon again."

Right after the Marathon (to Todd):
"Well, I don't want to think about training for Disney because that's going to suck.  I'm never running another marathon after Disney."

Day after the Marathon:
"Got to start training for Disney.  Maybe I'll look at pictures from last year's Disney marathon."

A few hours later:
"Disney was such a good race.  That was a lot of fun.  I'm excited about it, but then that's it for marathons for a long, long time."

Yesterday:
"Lots of people are running the Breast Cancer Marathon in February.  I could run that.  That will be fun.  Maybe I'll sign up."


... so, yeah.  Considering another.

However, I still make the guarantee that I will not run Marine Corps again, or if I do, it will be at least a decade from now.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Update on Today...

I'm sore, very sore. Last night, we stayed in the room and I nursed my blisters (even though I had some big ones, for the most part they were a non-issue). I iced my feet as well. Today, my legs are sore - especially quads. I can't sit on the floor, and my feet are very, very stiff. They'll be ok though...

I'm already starting to forget. It's funny how that happens. I'm looking at race reports from Disney 2007 and shopping for half marathons for 2008.

I'm nuts, yes.

2007 Marine Corps Marathon

We got down to DC on Saturday around 1pm or so and checked into our hotel. Our hotel was right on the race course and directly across from the Pentagon (great view!). We headed to the Expo right away to get our packets and ran into Kristy, Sue, Dianne & Natalie while we were walking around. Todd bought a new singlet for our Disney Marathon coming up.

Back to the room, where I practiced using my new watch. Then, we went to dinner at Cafe Italia in Crystal City. It was very nice, thank you for the recommendation, NickF!! WN and WoWN joined us there. We were a big group and dinner was very nice. Then, it was back to the hotel room where I suddenly got very sick to my stomach. I'd decided not to bring my iPod, but then Todd convinced me to take it with me on Sunday to the race, so I occupied myself by putting a playlist together - and I bought an audiobook - Jon Stewart's America, which I'd already read. I didn't end up listening to the audio book during the race, though.

We were up at 5:30 to start getting ready and had bagels in our room before the race. Then, we met everyone in the lobby and headed across the Pentagon parking lot to the starting line. The mood was good and happy.

Days before, I'd spoken to Jeff Galloway over email and he'd suggested that I do 1-1 intervals for the race. Karen later suggested that I do 1:30-1s and since Kathy (down from Vermont for the race) wanted to do 1:30-1s, Kristy and I decided to run with her at that interval, rather than the 2-1 that we're used to.

We started out great and on pace, although it was hard to tell because the mile 1 marker was definitely in the wrong spot. The early part of the race was hilly, but we were maintaining between a 13:30 and 13:50 pace, which was our target. Parts of the beginning of the race sucked - they changed the course this year and threw in an additional large hill around mile 6. Kristy and Kathy were actually speeding up and I spent a large portion of miles 5-10 following just behind them.

The UMBC Gang was out around mile 9/10 at the Kennedy Center and I waived to them, but really couldn't stop to say hello because I was trying so hard to stay on pace and I had no idea what would happen with the potty breaks. Their sign said "KLETCO!" this year so that I could distinguish that from all of the other Kims that are out there :) I love you guys!!

Around the mall, I was realizing that Kathy and Kristy were going to continue to go a little faster than I wanted to, so I finally fell behind and let them go. This happened around mile 11. My mom, Vic, Bo and Bo's 2 kids were out on the course at miles 12 and 14. They had brought canned orange sections in baggies that were REALLY REALLY REALLY good. And, they brought me my baggie of saltines. I saw the UMBC gang again at mile 14, and then headed on towards Hains Point.

So, at about this point - mile 14/15, heading into the toughest part of the race, I was tired. I was trying to maintain my goal pace of 13:50, but it was tough. I was feeling great mentally, and in a weird twist from last year, I was actually ok with being alone and looking forward to the solitary feeling of Hains Point. I was getting tired of people cheering and I wanted to focus on myself for a while.

As I passed through Hains Point, I focused on myself, and tried with desperation to figure out what I could do to recover properly. I added a few walk breaks and pretty much right at the point of Hains Point, I switched down to 1-1s. Pace had slowed to 14-15 minutes per mile, but after I passed mile 19, I tried to do some math and figured I could keep up a 14-15 minute pace and still PR... but it's hard to do math at that point.

... and on to the bridge. I knew I'd beat the bridge this year, I had no doubt I would get across so that really wasn't even a worry for me. I can't even really say that there was something satisfying about making it on to the bridge. I did get to see Davida though, who I cried to. I'd been crying on and off for a while.

Once I was on the bridge, I decided to start the iPod. I'd made a separate playlist of only songs that I felt that I could tolerate during the race, since a lot of times when running with music I skip a lot of songs. Well, that worked out, I never skipped a song at all and the playlist lasted me from the bridge all the way to mile 26 where I took off the headphones... maybe sometime I'll share the list, but there are quite a few embarrassing songs on the list.... I didn't care. No one could hear them but me and what did I care if anyone knew I was listening to the Spice Girls??

From this point - Mile 20 (after seeing Davida) into Crystal City, about mile 23, I fell into a pretty good groove of doing 1-1s and being able to keep a 14-15 minute pace. It was working for me. I saw my family again in Crystal City and also the UMBC Gang.

23-26.2 was a different sort of thing. My feet - and the arthritis in them - could not be ignored again. I was exhausted and my 1 minute of walking was not enough to get me to recover. I knew Todd had finished, which was a comfort, but the text message service was going crazy and I was getting like 50 text messages (LITERALLY!) every time I looked at my phone. I was throwing in extra walk breaks all over the place and walked most of mile 25. Then, as I could see the finish area in the distance, a couple of songs on my iPod gave me new energy and I manged about 4 runs... but no more. Everything hurt and my feet were so sore. There were a couple little hills toward the end, I saw Debra heading towards the finish. I was both happy to have the finish line soon and incredibly angry at myself for being unable to keep up with things to get a PR.

As I headed up the hill, there was Dianne, so I knew that she hadn't finished. I looked at my watch and saw 6:25... A PR would have to be better than 6:23. I shrugged and ran it in, but I was emotional and unhappy at the finish line.

I mean, one thing is good - I fought the inability to run alone and I was actually fine on my own. There were no mental issues on this run. It was just physical. And I curse the fact that I have this problem with my feet that is essentially the source of all of my other problems with running.

So, I guess I'm angry that I have this issue. I'm both disappointed and proud at the same time. And I'm very consistent. I didn't know my finish time, but Sandra called and let me know that it was 6:25 (I wasn't sure if I'd actually crossed during that minute or not). I can assure you that this was my last Marine Corps Marathon and I am relatively certain that Disney will be my last marathon for quite some time. I've already promised Karen from fleet feet that I'll be leading a half marathon group next year.

A HUGE thank you to my cheering section: Mary, NickF, Dustin, WN, Davida, Maria, Mom, Vic, Bo, Dylan and Drew. And thanks to Sharon for the encouragement during the race. Thank you and congratulations to my fellow MCM runners - Kristy, Dianne, Debra, Karin R, Sue, Nancy, Tom, Natalie, Kathy, Jack, WoWN, and most of all thank you to Todd for being a constant source of support, even when he's hurting also. :) I love you all.


Here are some photos... Some of them are from Davida. I didn't take a lot of pictures (only one on the course) because I was staying so focused on my running. Weird... it was just a completely different race for me, and I am still reflecting.

Marine Corps Marathon 2007

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Yes, I'm Done

  • Yes, I'm done.
  • Yes, I finished.
  • No, I didn't set a PR.
  • I feel horrible - worse than any other marathon thus far.
  • I am not pleased with my time
  • I did fight some demons by running more than half of the marathon alone.

Other than that, not at all interested in talking about it...

Saturday, October 27, 2007

We're Here...

Packets picked up. We ran into Sue, Natalie, Kristy & Dianne at the Expo. We have an EXCELLENT view of DC from our hotel. We can see the Kennedy Center, Washington Monument, 14th Street Bridge, and many more fun sights. And we have a bird's eye view of the Pentagon. The course actually passes directly in front of our hotel, which might mean that Todd will get to see me on the course tomorrow after he finishes. We'll see. Dinner is at 5:30 and then we'll just relax.

I'm less nervous than last year for sure. It'll be ok. Just a run.

Here we go...

Not quite packed, I have to get the rest of my stuff in order, but we should be able to get out of here by 11am, which is on schedule. I'm sitting with a bowl of cereal right now. Boy, I hope it stops raining.

Did I mention that I got a new watch yesterday? It's a Timex Ironman Triathlon that keeps track of target time. So, I have it set to 6:20 and at each split, it will tell me if I'm on pace or not. Kinda cool... If I can figure out how to work it before tomorrow morning.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Kim's 2007 MCM iPod Playlist

I'm still working out logistics of how to get headphones to work, but I think I'm bringing some sort of music player for the marathon...  And here are the top 12 songs that I want to put in my playlist (also an audiobook, but we'll see, my prep time clock is ticking down quickly...)
  1. Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen
  2. Under Pressure by The Used (a little faster than the Queen version)
  3. Eye of the Tiger by Survivor (cheesy but awesome to run to)
  4. Callin Baton Rouge by Garth Brooks (just a fast, great song)
  5. Southern Cross by Jimmy Buffett (to remember that I have something to look forward to)
  6. The Fever by Garth Brooks
  7. I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor (for Haines Point)
  8. Swamp Thing by The Grid (better for running in the country, but that is ok)
  9. The Race is On by Sawyer Brown
  10. Ready to Run by the Dixie Chicks
  11. The Road and the Radio by Kenny Chesney (it's slow, but a good song)
  12. Mountains by Lonestar

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Number Crunching

Ugh...

Jump into my pool of misery.

At work, we have this document that gets printed with a ton of numbers (my industry deals a lot with numbers).  On this page, these numbers are all dependent on one another, but the document I'm creating out of them doesn't really say how.  I have to get these numbers to match the numbers from the system we're replacing with our app.

You take one number and you multiply it by a bunch of other things, you add in all sorts of formulas, and the code that it's written in is not that good (frankly, and no, I didn't write it, but I'm stuck figuring it out).   There's all sorts of rounding going on all over the place and I've spent this entire week thus far trying to get them to match.

My eyes are popping out and my head is spinning... WN - is this what it's like to be an actuary?

Monday, October 22, 2007

6 Days to 26.2

I did my last long run of MCM Training tonight. Yes, tonight, because Saturday morning went something like this...

ALARM: BEEP BEEP BEEP...
KIM (turning off alarm): NO! I want to SLEEP!!!! (Rolls over, goes back to bed)
TODD: Sounds good to me... Zzzz...

And Sunday was more of the same.

So, tonight I ran 6 1/2 miles of hills (instead of 8 miles of trail). And now I just have to do 2 little runs this week and then Saturday I make my trek into DC and then Sunday I will torture myself for 6 hours. Huzzah!

I have really not thought a whole lot about the marathon, at least in terms of pain or sweat or mental anguish or anything that would make me nervous. And while I've gone to great lengths to not think about it, I noticed today while I was staring blankly at some Java code that I've been nervously chewing on my nails and such. Still, I'm trying REALLY REALLY hard not to think about it.

So, driving home I was focusing on the positive things. For example, that moment when you start running and you're crossing the starting line and the highway is lined with spectators, so many you'd never pick anyone out as being someone you know... Plus, friends are there with you and everyone's cheering and music is playing and you can't help but be like HELL YEAH! Marine Corps is great for that, because while there were a lot of people at Disney, not a lot of spectators at the starting line (plus it starts in the dark), although Disney has fireworks, which is a plus.

Or seeing friends and family along the course, getting excited knowing they're going to be up ahead and you can stop and say hi.

Or getting past mile 20 and realizing if you've beat the bridge, you can crawl in and you'll still finish... Yet, thinking "ugh, still a 10k race to go..." NO! POSITIVE THINGS!

Or crossing the finish line and being frickin' glad you're done and trying to decide if you should just lay down on the ground or what (the answer is that if you lay down on the ground, you don't get back up, so the best thing is a shower).

6 days.... 6 days.... 6 days...

Side note: While I was writing this, Todd saw picasa up on my screen and leaned over in a "hey! What photos are you looking at?" kind of way and then saw it was marine corps photos and said, "Oh God. I don't want to look."

Friday, October 19, 2007

The Day After

Get Ready.

Question of the Day: Tipping

For our Friday, here's my question today...

When you PICK UP food at a restaurant, whether it is carryout or just the carryout section of a full-service restaurant, do you tip?  Often, if you pay by credit card, there is a tip line on the receipt.  Do you write a tip down?  If so, do you tip more or less than you would if you were at a sit down restaurant or if you had the food delivered?

I want to hear peoples thoughts on this, because this is a real dilemma that I face all the time.

Tentative Marine Corps Weather

The forecast is finally out!  It's been killing me all season not knowing the weather...

Sunny, High of 66, Low of 47, 7mph winds

... that's pretty good.  It could be a little cooler, but maybe this will make my spectators more comfortable than last year.  I have a feeling that it will be windy at Haines Point no matter what.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Dining

Thanks for the suggestions for pre and post marathon dining. I'm taking Nick's Cafe Italia suggestion for pre-marathon, but I don't think that Jaleo will work for post-marathon. I looked at the menu and put myself in that "place" where you are post-marathon. It feels kind of like a hangover, where you really only want certain things. I don't think spicy food or lots of squid/seafood will work. I've decided not to eat squid anymore anyway, after playing with them too much underwater (even though I LOVE calamari, they're just so smart, it would be like eating a cat). Part of me is wondering if we should just get carry out from somewhere and eat in our room, except that I want to wear my medal around. I mean, how often do you get to walk around wearing a medal?

UPDATE: I'm thinking about maybe Hamburger Hamlet in Crystal City. Has anyone been there?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Marathon Information

UPDATE TO THIS... I double checked and I am registered for the Marine Corps Marathon in my MAIDEN name. If you're unsure, look up both names.

Hi everyone,

The Marine Corps Marathon is Sunday, October 28, 2007 and I will be running it for the second time. If you are interested in coming down to watch the race, here is some information.

The closest Metro Stations to the race are:
1. Arlington National Cemetary, which will take you within a mile of the starting line.
2. Foggy Bottom/GMU, which is about a half mile of the course between mile markers 9 and 10.
3. Federal Triangle, which brings you to about 2 blocks from the course at mile 12/13.
4. Smithsonian, which is around mile 14. It's a great idea to go to Federal Triangle, catch me at mile 12 and then walk across the mall to catch me at mile 14 and then take the Smithsonian Metro station, which is right there.
5. Crystal City, which is about 3 blocks from the course around miles 22 and 23. This is another great opportunity to see me twice.
6. Rosslyn, which is about a half mile from the finish line. I"ll be walking to this metro station after I finish in order to get back to my hotel.

The race starts at 8:00am and I run at about a 13-14 minute pace (meaning that it will take me 13 or 14 minutes to run a mile). You will have to do some math to figure out where I will be when. If you are looking for Todd, his pace is somewhere between 10 and 12 minutes per mile.

I will have my cell phone, you can call me at (email me), but I may not answer if I'm feeling bad. You can also text message me at that number.

If you want to bring things to give to runners, they like small gatorades, candy (gummy bears, starburst, candy corn), small pretzels and crackers. Bring them in a bowl or tray so runners can grab them as they go by. A lot of runners write their names on their shirts so that you can cheer for them as they go by.

If you are coming to see me, PLEASE LET ME KNOW IN ADVANCE! No surprises, it really encourages me to keep going if I have someone to look forward to seeing (and it really means a lot!!). I'd prefer to know exactly where you'll be so I can look for you and look forward to seeing you.

I also recommend remote runner tracking at http://www.doitsports.com/results/MSG-signup.tcl?sub_event_id=2941 If you register at that website, you can track where I am and the service will text message your phone or send you an email to let you know when I cross certain points on the course. (You can do this even if you aren't coming down to watch).

NOTE: I am registered at the Marine Corps Marathon in my MAIDEN NAME.

Thanks everybody!

Baltimore Running Festival 2007

Yesterday was the Baltimore Marathon, Half Marathon, Marathon Relay and 5k. I had done my running before hand (running 9 miles at 6:15am), and then we headed down to do our cheering for the marathon.

It was a beautiful day for a race, the weather was perfect. We were at mile marker 20 for the full marathon and mile marker 8 for the half marathon. There were some pretty tired looking people.

Wacky Neighbor was running the half, and I was there to cheer. Also running were Fleet Feet's Debbie, Rose, Michelle and Gary... and a guy dressed like a can of Miller Lite. I also saw Elvis, a guy wearing a big afro, a guy in a tuxedo... and two guys who are also running Marine Corps!

I couldn't make it to the finish line, but at mile 8, WN looked great (as did everyone, actually).


Sue, Debra & Todd


Giving out candy & cheering


Mile 8


Wacky Neighbor looking great!


Wacky Neighbor at Mile 8


Debbie at Marathon Mile 20


Gary


Rose and Michelle


The Miller Lite Can was running the Relay

Monday, October 8, 2007

More on Chicago

Read some of the debate on the Chicago Marathon...


Let's talk about this some more.

Without a doubt, the marathon was a disaster. So, was calling it off the right thing? Yes, I think so. At that point, everything had gone too far downhill. They were at a point where the marathon organizers, LaSalle Bank, the City of Chicago, and everyone else involved were risking lawsuits. As much as I'd like to agree that runners should be able to decide if they go on or not, the fact of the matter is that we sue in this country too much and that just feeds more and more the idea that companies and organizations have a responsibility to protect us from ourselves and our own stupidity. Plus, someone who has just run 16+ miles in 88 degree weather and is suffering from hyperthermia and dehydration is unlikely to make a rational decision either - especially when they've been training for 5 months. You get taught to run through everything, keep going even if it hurts, so you do. It's that simple. I can't even say with accuracy if I'd have stopped or not.

Chicago, New York, Marine Corps, Boston and all of the largest marathons in large cities should really think about this. There should have been a lot of ways to prevent a screw up like this. Yes, weather is unpredictable, but it's not unpredictable days in advance and enough water should have been brought in. As much water as possible. There should have been more volunteers, and attention should have been given to the back of the packers, who are out longer and face a much larger danger of dehydration and heat exhaustion. You ALWAYS want more water than less, because you can't get the water to the water stops during the race because the roads are closed. There should be contingency plans, and um, they should work.

Some suggested starting the race earlier. Well, if you make that a regular thing, you risk evil Chicago wintery weather that could be just as miserable. Changing the start time a day or two before the race is more difficult than I think people realize. It's not just getting word out to runners, it's coordinating an entire city and a ton of volunteers - not everyone can just up and change their plans and changing the start time might have resulted in less volunteers and therefore less water. Although it would have helped... this year... if it were possible.

Disney can do things a little easier, since they're on Disney property, most of the volunteers are Disney castmembers, and they have access to a lot of bottled water and beverages just for the parks. And, well, they're sort of good at managing crowds. It's what they do. I don't think the other cities have the same ability to manage 30,000 people who are out doing one of the world's ultimate tests of will. Every single person puts themselves in some sort of danger when they choose to run a marathon. What to do when circumstances happen and those 30,000 are taking even more of a risk? Chicago and New York are always challenging each other to see who can have the title of largest marathon. Maybe, in the interest of safety, we should think about reducing those numbers a bit.

NOTE: For the record, Baltimore had water troubles in 2005 and they're a much smaller marathon - the city's residents stole the water. Get my hands on those guys.

Who knows. Hindsight is 20/20, but I do think that race organizers should pay close attention and do something to make sure that there isn't a repeat of this. It's only going to get hotter, guys.

Marathons...

UGH.


First off, the Chicago Marathon just can't catch a break. Last year, they had the winner fall down at the finish line and this year there was a horrible mess with the temperature. This is frightening. It's OCTOBER. I was out at 4pm yesterday planting flowers and the heat was killing me. They shut the marathon down early... can you believe that?? I wouldn't have finished - and I even considered the Chicago marathon this year. That article gave me chills.

My thoughts go to Marine Corps. I have already run a marathon in 80-90 degree temperatures. I know what hell it is and how much it slows you down. What do I do if Marine Corps is as hot?? The differences between that and Disney are tremendous - Disney doubled the water stops, something I don't have faith that the MCM has the bandwidth to do. Disney also starts 2 1/2 hours earlier than the MCM - in preparation for potential heat. I don't know if I could do 26.2 at 85 degrees starting at 8:30am (I think it starts at 8:30 - if not, this should be something I am figuring out).

So, my thought is that if the forecast is for a sunny day hotter than about 80 degrees, I'm bailing on the marathon. Please don't be shocked. I will run either Richmond on November 10 or Philadelphia on November 18. Heat stroke and heat exhaustion are real threats... and I really don't want to take the risk for a race that isn't my target.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Running Update

Right now, things are ok but not great.  I tried a weekday short run last night and I had pain in my calf.  I knew that if I continued to run, after a mile or so it would go away or at least lessen, but I also know from before that if I continue to run through it, it won't heal or go away and it will get progressively (although relatively slowly) worse.  So, I chose to stop running and walk back home after roughly a third to a half mile last night.

The right foot/arthritis problem is fine, I have a bit of minor pain on the pinky toe side of my foot and the big toe joints on both feet are a little sore because I've been screwing with them, doing things like "Hey Todd, how far does YOUR big toe bend?  Let's try mine."  Nothing really unusual.

So, I'm really just fighting the calf.  Do I see a doctor?  What type of doctor?  Orthopedist doesn't make sense.  As much as I'd love to say that I should get a sports massage when it bothers me, that's going to get mighty expensive quickly (yes, I bought a massage package when I went in last week, but part of that is for my pre-marathon massage in October... Oh crap, it's October now.  Blah).

I'm trying to get the marathon info together, both for those that wish to come down and see me run and those that just want to track me online.  Congrats to Davida, also, for running the Berlin Marathon on Sunday!!! 

Also, too, if anyone knows of a good place to get pasta or pizza or both in the Arlington/Crystal City/Pentagon/Rosslyn area, I would be much appreciative.  It's ok if it's in DC, too, as long as it is very close to a metro stop.  I'm also looking for POST-marathon meal recommendations in the same area (not in greater DC, after the marathon I'd prefer to stay close to the hotel).  Post marathon meals are very tasty, but not too too greasy or heavy.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Running Update

Well, I finished my longest run of the season on Saturday.  It turned out to not be the longest run of the season, because my group elected to do 21 miles when we'd done 22-23 miles a few weeks earlier.  But it really shouldn't make a difference in the end.  I have a full report of the run itself on my private blog, go check it out!

After the run, I was in a lot of pain.  My ongoing problems with my feet are all caused by a problem with the bone of my big toe being too high on both feet, which makes walking/running difficult for me, and I compensate by turning my feet out (something I always thought I did because I was fat...).  It also means that I have arthritis in my feet, worse on my left side, worse on the big toe joints, meaning that I don't have range of motion in that joint.  The different stride also means that I get callouses and blisters on my feet because shoes were meant for people who run normally.  So basically all of my foot troubles go back to this one issue. 

Why do I mention this?  Well, I still don't know why it was so bad on this run, but I had a MAJOR arthritis/joint issue on my right foot this weekend.  As soon as I got home and took off my shoe, it was THROBBING.  I was in severe pain all day on Saturday (and I was also getting weird flu-like symptoms that caused me to sleep for at least 6 hours Saturday afternoon).  I was better Sunday (more leg soreness than anything - normal) and I'm much better today - almost normal.  It's weird, though, and my only explanation is that my shoe laces were too tight on my right foot.  When I bought new shoes a couple weeks ago, I only loosened the left laces to prevent blisters.  The right foot seemed fine.

So, there aren't any more really long runs before the marathon, and as long as I left my foot in the shoe I was ok (pressure on the foot really helped the pain, but when I removed the pressure, the throbbing started all over again).  Let's hope this doesn't interfere with anything.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Quick!!

I'll pay someone a MILLION DOLLARS if you run for me tomorrow. It's only one mile.*** You'd run a mile*** for a million dollars wouldn't you??

If you get up tomorrow, say, around 9... I will have been running for nearly 5 hours. I'm not going to start thinking about it though. Maybe I should just go to bed...

*** You must run this mile 24 times.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

2007 Primetime Emmy Awards

Honestly, I'm only watching them tonight because I want to see Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert win something. 60 Minutes is showing Alan Greenspan and diving with sharks, so I may switch over to there now and again (Alan Greenspan + sharks = ???). Like WN did with his blog today on the Ravens game, I'm going to do some updates maybe a little on the Emmy's tonight. After all, this is the first year that I've watched a lot of television since I was in high school...

8:00PM: I missed the red carpet because of football. I really think it's irritating when cartoon characters are on award shows giving out awards or performing. The audience doesn't seem to think it's very funny either.

8:03PM: Todd says, "The audience is bored to tears."

8:07PM: Ryan Seacrest... ugh. Todd says, "This is terrible." I wonder if Seacrest's tie is made out of licorice. I don't like licorice.

8:13PM: Ray Romano was certainly better than Ryan Seacrest, but he cut out for a minute due to technical difficulties. Stupid Fox. Entourage is good, but I would have preferred to see Rainn Wilson win Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy...

8:17PM: I think America Ferrera is beautiful and I don't care that she's not stick-figure thin. ARG! I wanted Hiro to win Best Supporting Actor in a Drama!!! Grr, I hope my shows win something, dammit. They're good shows!!!

8:23PM: Jenna Fisher or Elizabeth Perkins??? Choices.

8:24PM: The answer is... neither. ARG! Am I the only one that doesn't think My name is Earl is that great and is just something to watch while you're waiting for The Office to be on??

8:37PM: The montage of topical one-liners was, um... random. But we got to see Jon and Stephen, so yay!

8:41PM: Writing on a variety show... YAY! What I've been waiting for... NOOOOOOOOOOOO! Not Conan!! Jon or Stephen.!! Hello???????? Grrr.

8:54PM: Another loss for Jon/Stephen. Todd says, "It's amazing that Tony Bennett is still alive. But, he needs to learn a new song."

8:58PM: Ryan Seacrest again... haven't seen him in 40 minutes. He sucks.

9:13PM: I'm confused. They just announced like 3 sets of nominees and then only 1 winner. I know that it's not just that I have had 3/4 of a bottle of wine since the show started... something weird is going on. NPH wouldn't do that!

9:23PM: YAY YAY YAY!!! JON JON JON JON!

9:47PM: UGH... Horrible. Why the musical act and then bringing out the cast of The Sopranos?? Are we the only ones who think this was a dumb waste of time? At least I got some work done.

9:55PM: Yay, Lewis Black is on! Best part of the show thus far.

10:20PM: Hooray, The office won something. Thank goodness.

10:48PM: Well, I got to see Steve Carrell pseudo-win, and I got to see Jon & Stephen present an award, and I got to see the dead-people montage, so I guess I've seen it all, haven't I? I'm done with blogging and going to bed soon...

Wardrobe Update: Wacky Bunny Shoes

No, I didn't buy these... but.... aren't they weird?

Bunny Wedges

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Better As a Memory

By Kenny Chesney

The new Kenny Chesney album came out yesterday.  At first, I hated it, then I decided it was ok, then this morning I realized that there's a few really really good songs on it.  Here's the one that almost made me cry and is probably the best song off the album...

Move on like a sinner's prayer,
Letting go like a levy breaks,
Walk away as if I don't care,
Learn to shoulder my mistakes.
I'm built to fade like your favorite song,
Getting reckless when there's no need,
Laugh when your stories ramble on,
Break my heart but it won't bleed.
My only friends are pirates,
It's just who I am.
I'm better as a memory than as your man.

I'm never sure when the truth won't do.
I'm pretty good on a lonely night.
I move on the way a storm blows through.
I never stay but then again I might.
I struggle sometimes to find the words.
I'm always sure until I doubt.
I walk a line until it blurs,
Built walls too high to climb out.
I'm honest to a fault,
It's just who I am.
I'm better as a memory than as your man.

I see you leaning.
You're bound to fall.
I don't wanna be that mistake.
I'm just a dreamer, nothing more.
You should know it before it gets too late.

Cause goodbyes are like a roulette wheel,
You never know where they're gonna land.
First you're spinning then you're standing still,
Left holding a losing a hand,
But one day you're gonna find someone,
And right away you'll know it's true,
That all of your seeking's done.
It's just a part of the passing through.
Right there in that moment,
You'll finally understand,
That I was better as a memory than as your man.
Better as a memory than as your man.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

More On The Biggest Loser

Here's an article that I found that talks about how Jillian & Bob get really upset about the temptations on the show, and are frustrated over the fact that they have little control over a lot of things. Jillian also expressed the same sort of concerns that WN talked about in comments, about how the people are voted off...

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Cool

by Gwen Stefani

...sigh. For Dave, on a day that isn't special anymore.

It’s hard to remember how it felt before
Now I found the love of my life
Passes things, get more comfortable
Everything is going right

And after all the obstacles
It’s good to see you now with someone else
And it’s such a miracle that you and me are still good friends
After all that we’ve been through
I know we’re cool
I know we’re cool

We used to think it was impossible
Now you call me by my new last name
Memories seem like so long ago
Time always kills the pain

Remember Harbor Boulevard
The dreaming days where the mess was made
Look how all the kids have grown, oh
We have changed but we’re still the same
After all that we’ve been through
I know we’re cool
I know we’re cool

Yeah, I know we’re cool

And I’ll be happy for you
If you can be happy for me
Circles and triangles
And now we’re hanging out with your new girlfriend
So far from where we’ve been
I know we’re cool
I know we’re cool

C-cool, I know we’re cool
I know we’re cool

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Galloway Training, Week 17

I know I've been doing my marathon training blogging on the private blog, but I am SO PROUD of this run today... probably the most proud of any run I've ever done that's not a race.

So, the alarm went off at (UGH) 3:30am. I was at the parking lot by about 4:30 and we started running at 4:45am. Yes, it was dark and early. Sunrise wasn't until about 6:45, so we had plenty of dark time. We started out going north and I was in the lead since I was the one with the light and no one wanted to run in the glow of my lamp. I was half asleep and not particularly social, getting pushed a little by Nancy & Tom, and wasn't paying attention. Sometime around mile 3 or 4, I looked around to find that the only people running with me were Tom, Kristy and Nancy (Nancy usually runs with Maria's group). I had no idea we'd left the rest of the group behind and if I did realize it, I would have slowed down.

I did feel like we were going pretty fast. We were going around 13:30-14 minute pace. Too fast. But I kept up with it anyway... peer pressure. It was gorgeous outside, though. There was just a little sliver of moon and the stars were bright and pretty and at one point around mile marker 6, there's a bridge and a barn in the distance. There was fog around the barn and the moon above looked so beautiful. Awesome.

So, my blisters were acting up. My usual ones from last year on my left pinky and next-to-pinky toes weren't too too bad, because I'd worn my toe tube for the first time this year, and I'd wrapped the pinky in a blister bandaid. There's another one that's been popping up lately on my left instep that I think is caused by the orthotics I wear. I'm too lazy to go to the podiatrist to get it looked at. I was worried because I had a long way to go and they were hurting before even the first water stop. I decided to make it my goal that I would make it back to Monkton after we turned around.

So, first water stop at Monkton (mile 7) and Karen's group and Todd's group (he was running with Andrea) showed up right afterwards. I'd gone through 2 bottles of Nuun and filled up, and ate the Saltines that I'd dropped off at the running store yesterday because lately I've been craving salt and not sugar during long runs. It was rough after the break, hard going up north. At last, we made it to White Hall where there was a second water stop. We were going to turn around at mile marker 11, but we realized that in order to get our full mileage in we'd have to go to Ashland at the end, so it seemed more appealing to turn around at half way between 11 and 12. So, that's what we did.

Back at White Hall again, we stopped for our second break. I was having trouble eating and I could barely drink. I was basically feeling pretty awful. Todd was at that water stop as well, and he headed on as we left.

We decided to play the movie game that I'd suggested earlier in the run. Basically, it's like six degrees - you name a person and a movie they were in. The next person picks another person that was in the same movie and then names another movie that they were in. And so on. This kept us occupied all the way back down to Monkton and the miles really went by fast. It was actually a lot of fun and helped me to get my mind off how much everything was hurting.

So, we made it back down to Monkton. Things had leveled off on the blister front, so I decided to head on. However, it was only about a half mile to 3/4 of a mile before I realized that I couldn't keep up with that pace we'd been running and I fell behind. I told the others to go on... I was feeling so bad. Nausea, a headache, legs and feet were hurting. The arthritis in my feet was so bad I couldn't stand it. I made it my goal to make it only to Sparks and then have someone pick me up. I switched to 1:1s for maybe 5 minutes, but I couldn't even manage that. I was feeling terrible.

So, I walked. I walked for a mile and a half. I was a mess for a while, I had no idea what mile marker I was at, I had no idea what was going on . It was weird. I would have liked to have walked it in, but I knew that if Sue and Debra caught up with me, I was either going to have to stop, since I didn't have a cell phone, or I was going to have to try and keep up with them. Trying to run again after walking 2-3 miles was going to be too rough, so I switched back to 1:1s and found it wasn't too bad after the first few minutes. Amazingly, I was keeping a 15 minute pace pretty much on the dot.

Brenda was on her bike on the trail, asking me how I was and I was letting her know that I was ok, but I cannot thank her enough for being out there - I really needed to know someone was keeping an eye on me.

Finally, I got to Sparks. There was a car that looked like Todd's car parked there and I know for certain that if it had been his, I would have gotten in and gone home and forgot about the rest of the run. But as long as Sue and Debra hadn't caught up with me, and since I was happy with my pace, I decided to press on and make my goal Phoenix. If I made it to Phoenix, I would have run 20.5 miles, which was very respectible. So, onward.

Some other people had passed... Bobby's group, Lori, some others, and I was telling them I was doing ok as long as Sue and Debra were behind me. Brenda told me she could call someone if I stopped at Phoenix. Phoenix came and I realized I was feeling pretty horrible, but I could make it another 1.5 miles to Paper mill. It was the point of no return - there were no cross streets between Phoenix and Paper Mill, so if I passed Phoenix I had to make it back, even if I walked it in. But, like I said, it was only a mile and half when I'd already gone 20.5.

I went on. It was hot and miserable and everything hurt. It's a weird way to describe it... everything hurt. I was hungry, but couldn't eat. I was forcing myself to drink. I managed to keep that 15 minute pace and Sue and Debra, Natalie and everyone caught up with me right at the Paper Mill parking lot.

I MADE IT. I FRICKIN' MADE IT. I MADE IT 22 MILES THAT I NEVER THOUGHT I'D FINISH. And I was positive at the end. As happy as I was for finishing the 2 marathons. It was a frickin' accomplishment. This was longer than any training run that I did last year. I ran the last part of it by myself when I hate running by myself and have so much trouble running alone.

Here's a crazy thing...

Today, I ran 22 miles in 5:41:46. That's a pace of 15:32. 26.2 at 15:32 is 6:47:18. I estimate that the water breaks were a total of 23 minutes, bringing my time to 6:24 for a marathon which is... my Disney marathon time.

I ran marathon pace today.

Weird. And if I had to, if I would have gotten a medal for doing it, I could have gone another 4.2 miles at that 15 minute pace doing 1:1s.

Not that it's any revelation that I can run a marathon in 6:24, and my goal is 6 hours this year, but somehow that still is really impressive.

Anyway, post-run, things are sore. I went home and Todd, who also had trouble during his run, had bought me a quarter pounder from McDonald's (did I mention he is the best guy ever?). Getting my shoes off was rough, my blister on my instep is bad. My joints in my feet are KILLING me, my legs are very sore. I'm definitely in the worst pain I've been in for training this year. I ate the McDonald's and took a shower and then tried to sleep but only managed to dose for 30 minutes or so.

I've sort of laid around all day and finally slept for about an hour and a half around 6 or 7pm.

I'm exhausted, but happy and proud.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Myspace update...

Still no word from them as to why they deleted my account...

However, my darling network administrator, who apparently was sick of me knocking out the network visiting myspace, blocked it... So, now I'm really not ever going there again.

The Biggest Loser

Did anyone else watch The Biggest Loser on Tuesday? I'd been meaning to talk about it, but I'm swamped at work and hadn't gotten a chance. Anyway, it annoyed me, but no so much as to put it on notice...

It was this whole show bringing back past contestants and having them get on the scale. They would bring them out, looking all fit and fabulous, talk to them for a bit, show clips of them working out at home and whatever, and then they would say "Did you keep the weight off??" (the whole audience would yell this together) and then they'd get on the scale and be all happy when (surprise!) they had indeed kept the weight off. I found this show to be irritating. Why?

  1. First off, there's no point in acting like there is drama or suspense about whether or not they kept the weight off. Obviously, they did, since they're on the reunion show in the first place. Not to mention that we can PLAINLY see that they are still skinny. This is what I don't understand about weight and that magic number. Has anyone noticed that I share my weight all the time? It's because people can see by looking at me how much I weigh, I'm not fooling anyone.*
  2. Jillian Michaels wasn't on the show, but she's coming back this season supposedly.
  3. I HATE the way they portray people before they've lost the weight. Slow motion black and white style video of someone wearing clothes that don't fit, stuffing a burger into their mouth. Give me a frickin' break. I also hate the "I was so unhappy!! Now I'm so much more happy!" thing. Between 2001 and now, I hit my lowest weight in February/March 2006 and I can tell you for certain that it made absolutely no difference in my happiness. Once again, there's the media/television tying self-worth to weight and it's JUST NOT NECESSARY. Sure, you might feel better, look better, etc, but everything about your life does not rely on whether or not you are thin. If you're searching for happiness, bark up a different tree.
  4. They got rid of Caroline Rhea. I don't know why, I hope it was Caroline's choice. Any insight on this is welcome.
  5. Trainer Kim Lyons was on the show, and the new host (who wasn't skinny and wasn't chunky, but seemed frumpy in the dress she was wearing...) asked her what mistakes people make and Kim went on about Diet Soda and how it has caffeine and therefore you can't hydrate with it. This is crap. I get seriously irritated when an "expert" is on a show giving BS about something and people listen because they think she's right. More on this in a second.
Anyway, after the caffeine comment, I agreed to change the channel back to The Science Channel (we'd been watching an episode of "The Universe" about the Big Bang prior to the Biggest Loser coming on), since Todd was whining and saying "yeah, this was worth changing the channel for". He was right - The Universe was the better programming choice by far. So, ok, I only watched half the show but I was still disappointed.

So, about the caffeine thing... Yes, caffeine is a diuretic. However, the ratio of fluid to caffeine in sodas is enough that you are still getting hydrated from drinking a diet soda over water. What annoys me about telling people otherwise is that now there might be people who attempt to drink water or who try to drink something sugary like gatorade or juice instead. Of course, this is all fine except for the fact that there are people (myself included) who drink much more if they can drink something other than water. I do a lot better with Fruit 2-0 or Propel or Diet Soda than I do with plain water. Sure, water is the absolute best thing, but if you're going to be taking on tons of calories drinking juice or Gatorade or if you're not going to drink anything at all, then GO AHEAD AND DRINK THE DIET SODA. It's not hurting you. Seriously. Heck, I polished off a 32 oz diet Coke while I was typing this. For running, many of us often drink coffee before a run because, damn, we run early. I also have started trying Shot Bloks with caffeine added to them, because you know there's got to be something that will push me through those last 5 miles.

If you wanted to tell me that artificial sweeteners in diet soda might be an issue, I would be tempted to agree with you somewhat. It's tough to really know for certain. I do eat/drink plenty of artificial sweeteners and I do wonder what the affects of that are, but like I said, it's all a balance and hydration and lower calorie consumption is what is most important to me right now. You will hear some people go on about aspartame in particular. I take a lot of this with a grain of salt because it sounds so propaganda-like (I once read a website where someone basically said that aspartame causes pretty much every modern disease... sounds kinda far-fetched...). Still, I keep my eye out for actual evidence about Aspartame, Saccharin & Splenda. I don't have time to find links right now, but if anyone has anything really interesting (and from a reliable source) that they'd like to share, I'd like to see it. Sorry... I can't help but be skeptical when there's so much nonsense out there.

Ok, so that's the rant of the day. Back to work.

Google Answer on Caffeine & Hydration


*As a side note, I have a theory about this - you can't go wrong telling people your weight. There are only three options: a) you weigh exactly what people thought, in which case, what's wrong with that? b) you weigh more than what people thought, in which case, great, you carry your weight well. Good for you!! or, c) you weigh less than what people thought, which should be fine because now you've set them straight. That's my theory anyway. It's more about the fact that it's painfully obvious what I weigh by looking at me and that the number really doesn't mean all that much anyway...

Monday, September 3, 2007

ON NOTICE: Myspace

This is actually NOT the on notice I'd been planning to do a week ago... Maybe I'll circle back and do that one, but at this point I doubt it.

Problems with myspace:

  1. They recently deleted my profile, for no good reason. At first I couldn't log in, then after a few days, my profile disappeared altogether. I recreated it, but I'm annoyed that I had about 70 friends and now I have to remember who they are and relocate them or have them relocate me. It's not easy to find them all. I've talked to their customer service, if for no other reason than to figure out what happened, but it's a slow process.
  2. I hate myspace profiles. I hate tacky backgrounds, flash and animated things, and music that plays automatically. I'm really tired of looking at about 90% of the crap that is out there. It's disorganized and annoying.
  3. I don't understand the whole "comment and have a conversation in your comments" thing. I've tried it, but in general, blogs make more sense to me.
  4. For some reason, when I visit myspace from home, it causes my router to drop. And it doesn't just drop my computer, it disconnects the entire network. The only way to fix it is to unplug the router and plug it back in. This is irritating and unwelcome to the one I share the network with.
  5. Spam.
So, I'm about ready to give up on myspace altogether. And I mean, altogether. Those of you with blogs there - be certain that I will no longer read them. Myspace is an irritating place.

Going off notice is the Nike GoKids program, since I have faith that they'll use better judgement next time.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Workout Peeves

Sandra reminded me of some peeves that I've thought about posting and never have...

Bicycles
Just like Sandra, I love cyclists, I know people that are bikers, some that are swim/bike/runners ;) and some that just go out on the trail for fun once in a while. I like to think of those that are out on the trail as people that are in this with us, fighting heat and sun and exhaustion for hours at a time just like us runners. But sometimes... you guys get on my nerves.

First of all, when approaching a group of runners or walkers, pass on the LEFT SIDE, not the right. And shout "on your left" as you approach so that we know you're there. Trust me, after running 10+ miles, we are a little delirious and may not hear you. Tired of shouting? Get a bell or horn. Tired of all of us walkers/runners taking up the trail? Sorry, we get tired of bikers whizzing by us too fast and too close.

Walkers
Now, I walk 1/3 of the time, I realize this. But the walkers that get on my nerves are those that are completely oblivious to my running. After 15+ miles, it becomes very difficult to turn or go around anyone. Please realize this. Please don't walk 4 and 5 abreast, complete with dog on a leash. And please don't stop abruptly in front of me. And please make sure that your kids, whether on foot or bike, don't run in front of me and stay out of my way.

Cars
When I am running on the road, and there is a road which I have to cross and I'm waiting for you to pass, if you are the only car around, just go. Don't wait and waive me across. Everyone will get through faster if you just go. I hate hobbling across the road in front of a car whose driver is watching me cross the street. And when you do decide to just go, please hurry up!!

Also, please don't look at me as you drive past. Never seen a person running before?

And about your parked cars... don't park them across the sidewalk!! I understand if you're having a party and it's a one-time thing or something, but there are houses that consistently have cars parked across the sidewalk and it is IRRITATING.

People
While we're at it, don't block the sidewalks with your basketball hoops either. Basketball hoops are evil things anyway (you can put them up ANYWHERE and then I have to listen to the boom boom boom of a basketball bouncing on a constant basis), but to just leave them across the sidewalk is frickin' inconsiderate.

Don't leave toys in the sidewalk either. Have your kids pick them up... who leaves toys laying around in the yard all the time anyway?? Sidewalks are dangerous enough with their cracks and occasional unevenness.


... I know there's more, I'm just forgetting them.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Annapolis Ten Mile Run 2007

We were initially supposed to go down and spend the night at my mom's Saturday night and then get up for the race and only have 10 minutes to drive, but we ended up staying home. My mom was in Ocean City anyway, and last weekend was such an exhausting time that it just seemed more appealing to be at home in our own bed. So, we were up at 5:30 to head down to Annapolis for the race.

The other problem was that since we didn't go down on Saturday, we didn't pick up our packets on Saturday, so we had to rush around and get our race numbers when we got there. I ended up leaving my camera and water belt in the car and there wasn't anyone from Fleet Feet taking photos on the course (like Davida did last year), so you won't see any pictures here unless the course photographers come up with some. I didn't see many photographers on the course, though.

I had eaten a lot on Saturday, so I didn't eat before the race. I had brought things to eat during the race if I got hungry, but like I said, I left my water belt in the car, so I didn't have any of it. This was a problem.

The race was HOT and MUGGY. I think the humidity was a bigger issue than the heat. The heat seemed about the same as last year, but the humidity was miserable. Blah. At least the sun didn't come out until the last mile.

I started out running with Debra, Caryn, Sue and Natalie, but they were really pushing and I was not feeling up to par. I don't know what was wrong - lack of food, lack of energy? Perhaps. Heat? Maybe. Dehydration? Possibly. Who knows. I do know that as we went through the Naval Academy, I started falling behind. Yes, we went through the Naval Academy, passing right by where my wedding reception was! That was a bit of a course change from last year.

The bridge wasn't as bad as last year, I think because I was dreading it and I'd built it up in my head. Or maybe because I've been doing hill training like a madwoman and living in Manchester has made me rethink my definition of "hilly." Who knows.

I was miserable for a lot of the race, with numb hands, blisters, nausea and a migraine. Just last week, I'd told Kristy how I carry advil in my water belt because I get migraines, but I'd never gotten one running. Ha, I got one during the race. The blisters were worse because I just ran the 19 miles last week and then went to the podiatrist on Thursday and she lanced them and that was not good right before a race. My fault for not mentioning the race when I saw her. The blisters weren't horrible until about mile 7 and I still managed to hobble in. No runs this week until I can walk without a limp.

During mile 8, when we turned back onto Route 450, I could not be happier because I knew it was just one more hill before the bridge was in sight and I knew if the bridge was in sight I could finish the race. I really thought I couldn't finish.

I managed to keep up the 2:1s, but I let myself walk a bit before the finish line. Then, approaching the finish line I saw Todd and that made me want to run and I sprinted and shockingly found I'd recovered without knowing it and I did a pretty good sprint in.

Not my best race. I ended up getting all teary and choked up after finishing, for reasons that I'll discuss some other time (not about the race specifically, just about my struggles with running this year). I ended up doing 2:12, which is 10 minutes slower than last year almost exactly (and therefore a minute slower per mile). I guess that's ok. Acceptable at least. One thing is for certain... I was not meant to be a hot weather runner.

RACE RESULTS

Thursday, August 23, 2007

YAY, MVA!

I went the the MVA with about a million things to do (yes, I said a million). As always I expected it to be a horrible experience, especially since I was in Essex (I'd been to the doctor in White Marsh), and I was already annoyed that the MVA closes at 4:30 and there is not one near work.

But what happened is that they rocked there! They were actually HELPFUL and NICE. The lady who helped me asked me a lot of bizarre questions about my divorce, but I think she was just making conversation. So, Yay Essex MVA! You guys are awesome. Even when they were about to close, the lady that I was working with for my new license assisted me to be sure that someone from the titling department could help me with my new title for my car.

They are whatever the opposite of On Notice is.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Running Photos

Most of my pictures this week were just people being goofy. I think we were happy to not have to run more than 9 miles...


Sue, Debra, Tom, Kristy, Natalie


Andrea's group


Dianne & Brenda


Oooh, He's cute and had to be included. He is guarding my laptop, a bottle of Nuun, a pencil and directions to the UMBC Gang Festivus.


Andrea, Karen & Caryn


Suspicious!


Happy!


Special needs?


He's still cute.
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