Saturday, December 31, 2005

Indiana Girls

At home in Indiana visiting my family for the holidays. Kenza and I with my brother's girls. My dad is recovering from minor heart surgery. I've done little running and plan on a lot of shopping.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Sorry Sue and Paul

I've got to do it. I'm bumping Gmap Pedometer to #3 on my list of world's greatest inventions. I have a new love. I got a Garmin Forerunner for Christmas. It is an amazing, wondrous invention. Today was my first run with her. She performed spectacularly. More than I can say for myself. Somedays you just gotta be glad you made it out of bed and on the road. Look at the pretty, pretty charts it makes (not my slow pace):


Now look at this one, oh so pretty:


And it does so much more, so much: maps, splits, virtual partners. Go and get one now. Sell your soul if you must. You will be glad you did. Now I will always know what my splits are . . . how did I ever live without her? I haven't figured out how to make it backlight the entire run. Can it do that?

I have a feeling Nano is jealous.

Monday, December 26, 2005

The people have spoken, and a half it is

At least for now. I really am glad about this decision. My main focus is on the Austin Half in February, and The Big D Half in April. My goal is to finish the Austin Half in under 2 hours and the Big D in 1:50. Both attainable goals if I train properly and incorporate a little speedwork. My ultimate goal is to run another full marathon this fall, perhaps Las Vegas, as I understand this is a really challenging Boston qualifier.*

I ran 5 SLOW miles on Saturday and felt hints of shin splints, my sign that I need new shoes. I've only had my shoes for two months. Huh, I can't believe I'm complaining about getting new shoes. I hope all of you had a happy holiday.

*And by a really challenging race I really mean, a really challenging weekend shopping at Ceasar's Palace and playing craps and drinking martinis** until 5AM.

**And by martini's (plural) I mean one before I start admiring the fraternity boys wandering around Caesar's Palace wearing togas and being hauled off to bed by my long suffering slightly more alcoholic friends.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Oh come all ye playful

My friend Kate introduced me to the concept of the Fantasy Wishlist. I could get used to a world filled with these:
  • A daughter who cleans her room before I actually have to take a stick in to whack the things nesting in the corners.
  • Super-hero running legs.
  • My own petting zoo - with room for a llama and baby goats.
  • A personal shopper at Nordstroms who would lead me to the secret stashes I KNOW they're hiding from the common folk who must look for themselves.
  • Real Fashion Police. Oh, come on, people! Paris Hilton? That alone is worth an arrest.
  • A husband who doesn't find it necessary to classify the refridgerator. And it's not just alphabatized - it's also subcatagorized by food group!
  • A dog that comes with her own cleaning team to trail behind the "happy pee."
  • Someone to kill the cheese-grating madman who makes mincemeat of my ovaries. Hell, while it's a fantasy list, a world without PMS would be nice.
  • A hangover-free martini. Or five.
  • To be a driver who doesn't scare the hell out of my passengers.
  • To not have to use the term "international sales meeting" to cover my blogging addiction at work.
  • An Ethiopian baby who runs faster than all the other babies. Or just runs, since that would be fairly impressive in a baby.
  • The Swordsy girl's breasts.
  • One day where I don't have to hear either ESPN or Hillary Duff on the television.
  • That the bathroom across from my office would suddenly start smelling like roses insted of like...bathroom.
  • Oh, and since this is a fantasy list - world peace would be nice too.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Decisions

Okay people. It can’t all be poop and breasts and dogs with happy pee. Occasionally, I do obsess about my first love, running. Between the stress over Kenza’s eye, the distractions of daily life, and the shiny, shiny baubles tempting me EVERYWHERE I go, I’ve been able to ignore a decision I really must make.

To half or not to half – that is the question.

From the end of last year through this October, I’ve run three marathons. I’ve trained for these, I ran them (albeit slowly). I’m proud of this.

But I’m just not sure I have it in me to do a marathon again so soon. I really want to – now that I’ve established that I can do it, I feel I’ve set a precedent I should follow. Doing a half seems like cheating. But my body tells me every day that I am not ready for a full marathon.

The Austin Marathon is only 60 days away, and I really must make a decision soon.

Monday, December 19, 2005

A backwards run

Today's run is inexplicable . . . 4.364534819908468* miles in 44:49. If my memory serves me correctly, here are my splits:

M1: 7:26 (go me)
M2: 8:30
M3:9:23
M4: 12:00
M4.364: 8:00 (no go me)

My body is not properly fueled. These holiday foods are taking their toll, and then some. Perhaps I should start documenting my consumption again. This time of year, I'm certain it would be a very ugly documentation.

I have the day off work today. I'll be at my church, finishing my shopping. Let's hope my lovely Michael won't make me repent afterwards.

*If I haven't mentioned it before, Sue & Paul's Gmap Pedometer is the world's 2nd greatest invention.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Ask a stupid question with PMS . . .

Susan asks:
"WHY? WHY? Why must every TV in the house be on ESPN?"

Methodically, Michael answers:
"Because I get bored with Susan porn!"

Friday, December 16, 2005

Wednesday wishes do come true

No shooting stars, maybe it was the full moon, but I ran well today. Ran the same Quail Run killer hill training loop. I improved my time. 5.5 miles - average pace: 9:17 per mile. Go me.

__________________________

Ok, so now for some non-running updates:

Kenza's eye: Doctor said she was healing well. I still catch her watching TV with one hand over her injured eye. That pupil is getting smaller, but still slightly oval. We go back to the doctor in 6 months.

Cleanse: not much to report. I stopped it for a while before the half. I'll be starting it up again soon. My intestines will thank me.

Shopping: Susan has neglected her shopping duties. This weekend will be full of bags and boxes of gifts - all for others, of course. Oh, but how those black satin pants are still seducing me - and so are those strappy gold heels. We'd be so good together. Let us add a shimmery tank while we are lusting.

Weight: UGH- 130. My ankles were sore running today. This is always a sign that I've put on a few extra pounds. I guessed 3 while I was running, but the damn bitch Tanita said 4 when I got home. My sugar addiction gets the best of me this time of year. I LOVE SUGAR. I have, however, managed to minimize the adult beverages - always a challenge at holiday parties.

Summer tan: Faded. Heliotherapy is so good for the soul. Sigh.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Ridden with disease

Rob the Runner has infected me. Here are five random facts about me –
  1. I go through obsessions constantly, picking them up and then dropping them when I’ve lost interest.
  2. I’m an ordained minister. A long story for another day.
  3. My occupation is not as a graphic designer – I just play one on Blog TV.
  4. Most people think I am a sorority girl, rich bitch until they meet me. Oh, how soon they know better.
  5. I don’t understand, and am disturbed by, the obsession men have with Rachel Ray.
I’ve had my vaccinations, so I am not contagious.*

*I'm tagging the people I know this torments the most and that are most likely not going to do "the 5 random facts": Amy, Sarah, Linda, Kate - oh, and maybe Zara the Pirate Girl.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Reason to celebrate: Beat the big ass hills and made it to 200 posts

Today was hill training - 5.5 miles at 5 AM. Average pace: 9:47 per mile. It had rained the night before, providing the morning with much fog and many puddles. Fun stuff. I blister easily and don’t like to run with wet gear. My shoes were the only things to get wet today – and since I already had blisters from the half – my wet shoes only added to the festering pus. No biggie. The last 2 miles were a slow hell; they brought my average pace down considerably. Being run over and dragged by a car for 2 miles would have been more pleasant, I suspect.

I saw two shooting stars this morning. The second was bright and lasted so long, I thought for a moment its trail might touch land. My wish was for more hill training.

But the run is over, the morning young, and I’m off to irritate my co-workers by being absurdly wide-awake.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Buttcamp & the paraphernalia lowdown

This morning was buttcamp - hard, of course. Lunges, lunges, lunges. Cardio, cardio, cardio. My legs are delightfully sore and stiff. I’m sure their suppleness will return and they will be ready for tomorrow’s miles.

A cell phone, a camera, a nana, and some gu. I know, I know - sounds like a lot of gear to haul around during a half. So here’s the lowdown on the half-mara accessory situation.

This is the itty-bitty keychain camera. Isn’t it cute?


I hooked it on the loop on my tights. Here are the splits it photographed miles 3-8. (Umm, not sure what happened during miles 6-8. We’ll just blame speed) Very purposeful. Don’t you think?


The cell phone? Unfortunately, work dictated its presence. The phone isn’t much bigger than the camera – it gets stuffed in my bra (with the pack of gu.) I usually carry my phone when I do runs over 7 miles. It’s dark and sometimes I’m alone – what can I say? I'm a safety girl. There may be an expectantly menacing hole waiting to swallow me. And, at 5AM, I’m not usually talking on it – I just feel better having it on the road with me.

Oh, and finally - my Nano, so slim and shiny – my one true love. Semi permanently attached in its rightful and harmonious place to my left arm.

See, all is right with the world - no pack mule required.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Dallas White Rock ½ Marathon Report

First - The evening before involved eating sushi, drinking sake, and then attending Michael’s company Christmas party – which was extremely boring and involved me standing on my feet for 3 hours in heels. Stupid. Boring. Bleh. I didn’t get to bed until after 10:30PM. Irritating.

Second - thank you Kate and Linda for watching hyper-Kenza and being there with me. Your support means a lot to me and so do the free babysitting services.

While reading this post, keep in mind that White Rock is unorganized and uphill. These things suck. I also brought with me a very small digital camera to take pictures of my splits because I don’t know how to make my watch do these things yet. I got this idea from Rachel and Brent. Thanks.

Woke up at 4:30 AM and got ready, ate a banana. Kenza and I picked up my friends and we arrived at the race course at 6:30 AM. (Yes, I am compulsively early – Yes, everyone I know hates this) This is the famous busty librarian Linda. See, she’s not so scary, just very, very sleepy at the moment and somewhat irritated by the fact that we are sitting in the convention center for over an hour doing nothing but watching thousands of other people. We all moved out to the freezing cold start line at 7:45AM.

Mile 1 – It’s freezing outside, my toes are frozen.
Mile 2 – Where is the mile marker? My toes are frozen
Mile 3 – First mile marker I see – time 28:18

Mile 4 – A little hot – time 37: 54
Mile 5 – Never saw a 4 mile marker, ticked off, getting hot, why did I wear the extra underarmour shirt, I throw my gloves on the side of the road – time 47:23
Mile 5 ½ - Karrie calls “Susan, where are you?” I tell her I’m at mile 5 ½ and I don’t know where that is – she says “I’ll see you in a few minutes” Plan on handing her headband but I never did see her.

10k – Still going uphill and really ticked off about it - time 58:12. My phone rings – its Kate and she says that they are at the general area – “Kate, I don’t know where that is, just scream when you see me” WTF is the general area. Hmm, I have my suspision they were just frolicing in the leaves and were never at the race to begin with.

Why can't anyone find me!

Miles 7 – 13.1 were unmarked or marked so poorly that I didn’t see them. These miles were filled with profanity - real profanity, SEVEN more phone calls, being hot, hot, hot and a bunch of running Elvis’s (Elvi?)

Official finish: 2:04:50. I really wanted under the 2 hour mark, but I have done no hill training since the Chicago Marathon. So, I’m happy with my time. Running a half is a refreshing change to the full.

After, we all went to a delightful brunch place and ate until we popped - Kenza fell asleep while we were waiting for our table.

Oh, and I'm never racing with my cell phone again.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Uncomfortably cold

Semicolons suck; and are only good for making; internet winky faces.

; ) See, just for you.

Our 5-mile run turned into a 3-mile run. Time - 27:35. Not so horrible considering I was wearing 4 layers of clothing and 2 hats.

Twelve degrees makes for a really cold, nasty run. My body was freezing in all possible respects - I swear I was being tortured by Antarctic frost. My chest slightly rattled with congestion and the cold air caused more drainage than I could swallow. If that’s not repulsive enough, my lips are now thoroughly chapped and are sure to provide me with a persistent source of annoyance all day long. Lovely.

I, Runner Susan, declare all those who run in temperatures under 25 degrees psychotic. What you people in Canada do in this weather is a mystery to me. You must be part penguin.

Texans aren't prepared to run in weather this cold; it only happens a handful of times throughout the year.* Unfortunately, the fact that this weather is an anomaly means I can’t be justified in going out and purchasing arctic weather running gear, damnit.

*Better?

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Better today and spoiled too

We had a wee little bit of sleet last night - so nearly the entire city of Dallas shut down. Silly Southerners. Giggle. Kenza and I slept until 6AM. Yippee, that’s 4 days of sleeping in and being lazy for Susan.

Unfortunately, that time is over.

I headed to the gym around lunch time and did 30 min on the treadmill (Yuk) and upper body weights and abs. I then headed to the pool and swam for 30 minutes, or rather; I splashed a lot and attempted to do something that resembled swimming for 30 minutes.* I then followed this with some stretching in the hot tub. The only way to stretch if you ask me. Oh, and lastly, I spent 15 minutes in the eucalyptus steam room.

Mediocre intensity, very tight hams and calves and general overall achiness - but I certainly put an end to my lazy streak - even if the putting in itself were lazy.

*Rgirl - please note my proper semicolon usage.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

99.2

As I was dressing to run this morning I noticed my armpits were stinky and I was sweaty - so I took my temp, 99.2. Does this constitute a fever? Yes. I think so. I don't feel sickly - although I do feel REALLY tired and cranky. I cancelled my run and went back to bed. I have been craving sleep this week, which is unusual for me. My 4 AM internal alarm has not been going off.

Today will be three days without working out. I hope this doesn't set me back too far. I'm kicking myself right now. Sunday I was telling Richard during our 10 mile run that I was coughing a little and I should get something to prevent myself from getting sick.

I hate retrospect.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

So shoot me

I overslept and missed buttcamp. So I made this new header. I know it's annoying. It's not even the holiday legs, but we'll pretend. I'll stop the madness soon - I promise. Eventually, I know the roses will return - until then I must drive you all crazy.

Why. Why. Why?

This means I'll have to go to the gym and workout tonight. Sigh. I'm sad. I love buttcamp. I never miss buttcamp.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Okay, so it's a rest day - buttcamp post tomorrow

She will hate me someday, but how can I not share this raw talent! She wants voice lessons, but I don't think she needs them.

Of course, she knows better than to jump on my bed.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

It took five stinking hours of holiday joy, a little profanity and a whole lot of patience - but we finished the gingerbread house

Sad part: it was a kit . . .

Some tweeny hills

Today was our Sunday 10 mile run - I haven't actually put together a workout plan for the marathon yet, but I'm sure it should involve adding more miles sooner or later. February will be here before I know it. Today's average pace was 9:46 min miles - and that’s with an eight minute break after mile five. Ahhh, we do love nature. Time 1:36:42.

Yesterday it was a sunny 85 degrees and I was washing my car in flip flops and shorts. This morning it was a windy and a chilly 28 degrees. Got to love Texas weather. I froze my butt off the entire time - but, overall it was a good run. Miles three through seven did involve several tweeny* hills. Those would be the rolling hills that are not large enough to slow you down, but irritating enough to hasten the respiratory system.

Great to have you back Karrie - you ran really strong and your first 5 miles rocked, it was a striking come back from your recent illness. Richard, thanks for being tall and wearing the blinking light - you ran really well today.


*In popular culture it has been used to describe children in the age range of 8 to 12 years old - also known as the stage when children begin the slow torment of their parents with clever and often imperceptible degrees of skill. I use this term to describe things that are evil.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Seven

I wish it were my favorite number, but not today. I ran seven miles this morning, average pace: 10:09 per mile. I'm a little disappointed with that time, but Mother Nature was taking her revenge on my reproductive organs and I forgot to take pain relievers. Sigh.

Miles one & two were hard. Three has always been the beginning of my favorite miles. I felt somewhat strong miles three through six. Although, I must say, seven was very, very hard - this slow mile made my average pace over ten minutes - eh. Finishing time 1 hr, 11 min and 3 seconds.

The only thing that makes this female situation marginally more bearable is the fact that I just made my designer blush by using the term "reproductive organs."