Run hard, Play hard, Love Hard

Run Hard, Play Hard, Love Hard

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The BIG debate...

Last week I went for a  6 mile run through out my town. A little over 2 miles of it was on our great bike path (aka rape path- past a specific point and time of day) ANYWAY- at one point there was a biker and a skate boarder in front of me. We ALL come upon a fisherman and his dog (looked to be leashed). The dog sat and watched the biker go by, then the skate boarder go by, then when it was my turn- I get attacked on. WTH?! Mr Fisherman yells for his dog and I keep running by. About 20 paces later, my fear kicks and I start to realize what just happened.
I decide to keep this bit of info to myself ( aka away from hubbys ears until I can sugar coat it OR have resolved the program for future- dont want to scare him or lose my running) for a bit.
Then, the following Saturday, my little moms running group consisted of JUST ME. Apparently there was a little 2 mile run hosted by the high school cross country team going on for a fundraiser on our bike (rape) path. I missed it. But I decided that I would still get in my 2 Trail laps at the college. So 80% of this trail is SECLUDED. After I hit this SECLUDED area, my heart started to race, my ears and eyes were darting everywhere, I noticed that I had forgotten my RoadID, at one point I thought I say a dog in the corner of my eye! (dead tree stump-nice) Needless to say, I stopped after lap1, got right in my car and took a deep breath. NOT COMFORTABLE!

So - I went home, sat down, told hubby about the dog jumping me on the bike (rape) path, then told him about my freak out Trail run ALL ALONE and that is why I was home early. We decided- I NEED A RUNNING COMPANION. AKA: DOG.

Ok, So I want this...

Blue Great Dane

And hubby wants this...


What one is a better running companion. What I have heard is that a Great Dane is "happier" "Hyper" and a Mastiff is "slower" not the best running buddy but a good scarer.

So- what are your thoughts?? Or even- what would OR do you run with as a 4 legged buddy? Do you know someone that needs to adopt a 4 legged friend out? Or sell at a low (poor people) price??

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Motherhood of the Traveling Book!!

For my 28th birthday, my sis in law (you can meet her here) gave me the book "Run Like a Mother" I have recently completed it and was SO entirely FULFILLED by it that I wanted to share it with my friends, and their friends and so on!!

SO- here is what is happening with my precious book. ~sis, i love you for gifting me this wonderful book, I am temporarily sharing the love and will hope to see it back in my arms in the future.~

I will be sending it off to a Mother Runner Friend in Lawrence Kansas tomorrow. Inside the cover, I will include the readers directions of usage.
#1: My name, address, and email.
#2: They are to read it the book (timely) enjoy it, breath it in, take a picture of it with them, the kids, their running shoes, whatever!! THEN email me their thoughts, best parts, the picture, etc AND to whom the book is headed and where. (needs to be a running mommy to really get the entire book btw)
#3: Each participant will do the same. And someday, the book will HOPEFULLY find its way back to me.

During this process- every time I get an email, I will blog it and MAYBE even have a giveaway or 2 (or more) corresponding to its travels.

Fingers crossed this all goes well and that my BBF (Bestie Book Forever) has a traveling good time!!!


Monday, August 23, 2010

In my dreams!

Ok, so the phrase is "in YOUR dreams" but hey, I don't know one person that has ever dreamt about ME running, but myself.
Yes- it has happened.
I have officially dreamt of myself running.
And to make it crazy, I was running a MARATHON. I haven't even done that yet! So this is a SIGN I have decided. But first let me tell you how crazy weird my dream was....

#1 I was running a marathon
#2 My sis in law, motherrunner & her hubby, fatherrunner were running it with me... the weird part: I BLEW them away in speed (HAAAHaaaaaaaa- never happening!!)
#3 This marathon course consisted of actually running THROUGH peoples houses every so often.
#4 At the turn off for the marathon runners (must have been a half too) I turned off into a warehouse, where they took crazier than highschool portrait photos of you (ex. hercules in heaven with angels scene)
#5 THEN they check to see your idea and check what college you were registered with (WHAT?! COLLEGE?!) Apparently I was registered with some catholic sounding school (dont recall name- and I am not even catholic!) and not what my College ID (yeah- apparently I had one on me) told them. Don't know what college it said by the way. SO they kicked me off the marathon at that point (somewhere around the halfway point. And NO ONE would give me a ride to the finish- AND they won't let me run it.
Then I woke up.
What would you take from that??? Please let me know your opinions. I don't know if it is a sign to NOT do a marathon or TO DO a marathon.

AND don't forget about my GIVEAWAY HERE!!!

On a side note: BigGirl Started school last week. Kindergarten!! And on day #2- she says " Mom, I dont need you to walk me in anymore." WHAT?! So, holding back tears, I drove up to the drop zone, and let her go- after a hug a kiss in the car ofcourse. Where did that time go??

Monday, August 16, 2010

Old Settlers 5K (rebound from vacation)

Ok, I will admit that it has beena TOUGH return to exercise since the little Chicago vacation. I have had my share of HIT AND MISS workouts. This morning, I FINALLY pulled myself out of bed at 5am to drag my vaca-comma butt to the gym. Don't get me wrong, I have attended my Thursday & Saturday morning running groups, but the gym has been harder for me. Now- I didn't work my butt off like usual, I decided that today my goal was to get there and spend an hour. Get my unresponsive body to move at 5am, PERIOD. A nice walk on the treadmill, a nice medium cycle and than Legs day on weights. (that is my most favorite lifting day)
So, ok, I got up, got there and did something. Horray for me.

This past weekend, I aided my Sis-In-Law, MotherRunner, with keeping her kiddos while she and FatherRunner (her hubby) ran the Georgetown/Idaho Spgins half in Colorado. The kids were easy, polite and great, ofcourse. And we are always hapy to lend a hand when needed. I helped with the paper route, took care of dogs/cat, and even got them up at 6am on Saturday for the Halstead Old Settlers 5K Run. (race was at 730am but we had a paper route to do first) LittleFoot (their daughter) did the 2 mile Run. And she did very well, snagging herself the 3rd place metal for the age group. BigFoot (their son) ran the 5K. He is a teenage, so I was happy to keep him in my sites ( a few blocks ahead of me) until around the 1 mile range. Than he was GONE, POOF, never to be seen again until the finishline. He did good as well, snagging the 2nd place metal for his age group.

I came around the corner for the final 3 blocks, and I could see BF and LF waiting for me at the finish. It was a cute experience, my little cheering team. LOL! So, I did well, getting a PR of 33:03. But alas, no metal for me. (5th or 6th in my age group) Someday I will quit telling people about the race and then MAYBE I will metal. LOL!!!

The rest of the weekend was filled with friends, a "teaser" rain shower and a lazy sunday filled with movies.

The weekend ahead is filled with hubby's first day back to college (today), and BigGirls first day of Kindergarten (Thursday). What is in store for you??

BTW- don't forget my GIVEAWAY here!!!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Keep them Running in!!!!!

Today is the day-
The day that I am taking a leap-
A leap of sheer faith-
Faith to keep moving-
Moving towards a great Start-
Start to the big list I need from you-
From you, all the GREAT runs in your area-
Area being your town/state/continent-

SO, throw them out there everyone! Give me your most fun, always sold out, must do once your lives races! Halfs-Fulls-Trail Races-Sprint Tri's-Even you ULTRAs!!!

Because I am starting today! I am making my list! The list that gets me to ALL 50 STATES! Even Different Countries!

The Goal.
My first Marathon in the next 2 years. (Expires August 10, 2012)
My first Trail Race in the next year. (Expires August 10, 2011)
My first Sprint Tri in the next 2 years. (Expires August 10, 2012)
My first Ultra in the next 5 years. (Expires August 10, 2015)
All 50 States in my lifetime (Sorry can't predict that date)
And at least 1 other Country in my lifetime. (again sorry)

SO- repost this on your facebook, or blog, or tweet, whatever you have!! And lets see what I can get planned!!

And a random blogger will be winning: INJINJI MICRO TOE SOCKS!!!

*Color and Size will be chosen by winner

*Every Race post is an entry
*Tell me you Linked it with your blog, facebooked it, tweeted it- each one is an entry
*Become a Follower- one entry

GIVEAWAY ENDS OCTOBER 10TH!! (This is a good 2 months to get me something good! And to get me some more followers! LOL!!!)

Saturday, August 7, 2010


So today was my mom's running group. We were running the Bethel College Trail 2 times around. On the first lap, we had a little chit chat. We talked about other runs we want to do, for example Rock n Roll Vegas is December 5th and I think that my sis-n-law and I should take a fast weekend and go run it. And we talk about bloggers we read and races they just completed. (see we do love you all!!) And we talked about the Banana (muffin top) outfit I wore this past weekend in Chicago RnR. Apparently wonderful sis n law likes the outfit and thinks it looks good. She incouraged me to go back and look at the photos from my first half marathon this past November. So I did,

I can show to compare for you, since that photographer has an actual copyright block. But she is right. I did wear clothing that was larger. Pants and a longsleeve tee, with a larger regular teeshirt over that. I was not ok with my look. I don't look like I have lost weight, but the working out has redistributed it. I am more comfortable in my look. I wear what is better for me and not better at hiding necessarly. And for the first time in years (we are talking at least 8 years) I am 100% ok with shredding my shirt after a long hot run. Chicago almost got to see that! LOL!! But I was so exhausted and needing to get back to hotel to check out fast, that I didn't give myself the time to loss it.

So, I guess what I am saying is that even if I am not photo perfect yet, I am still feeling better about myself. Maybe soon, the muscle build will slow and the fat loss will increase, thus showing a difference on the scale. Or at least I can pray for that to happen soon. I have been playing with the same 10 lbs for the past 3 years, I need to get over that hump.

So run on friends, and watch out for running bananas!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Chicago Part 2: Race Day

After sleeping with the leech (BigGirl), I awoke with the sound of my blackberry alarm "I wanna be a Billionaire so freakin' bad!! Buy all of the thin...." ahh sorry there. I quitely got up, got dressed,
**note to self: never wear this outfit again until the muffin top is ALL GONE. You will see why in the below pictures.

..went through my morning  regiment and had my peanut butter natures bar. I walked out the door and awaited for the SLOW elevator. I was happy to find it open after only a few moments and was able to get one with another runner, it stopped on a another floor and picked up 3 more runners. Awhhhhh the early morning runners make me sooooo happy. :o) When the door opened, we headed outside and down a couple blocks to the start liner and our corrals.

When I got to the corrals, how happy was I too see that not only were they empty (not opened for runners yet) but it was a straight shot from my hotel to my corral. No walking forever until I got to my sad and lonely corral. * I pulled corral 25 out of 29 this time. Pathetic, right. I did meet a few great gals while awaiting the start, then awaiting the 40 minutes after the official start to the start of my corral. YAWNNNNNNNN.

During that time, I found out that there were a handful of celebreties in the race... Jason & Molly Mesnick(the bachelor), Jake Pavelka (the bachelor & dancing with the stars)*yucky guy*, Kelly Bensiman (Real housewives of NYC), Giuliana Rancie (E! news), Andrea Powell (The Gates), and Al Roker (morning weather guy). *more on these coming, but can you guess which 1 celeb I beat? Don't strain yourself, it is a no brainer. Another sad moment for me.

Ok, and we are off!
Mile 1: 10:55 Woohoo good start
Mile 2-3: I am telling myself to make this good, the 5k is the first text message to family about my time!
5k: 37:04
5k-Mile 5: Keep going strong! My kids and hubby are right around the corner waiting for you!!
Mile 5-6: Where are they, Where are they, Ohhh "Sweet Caroline, bom,bom, bom" HEY! There they are!! HIGH 5s!!!!
Mile 6: 1:17:03
Mile 7: Getting beat here, just don't look at your watch, need mile 8, Coffee Bean Gu at mile 8.5....
Mile 7.75: ICE!! Wohoo!! DEAD BEAT TIRED! A little fast walk and ice in my water.
Mile 8: My legs are so heavy, just keep moving, HATE all the people that are already running along the lakeshore (mile 10-finish)

Mile 9: Coffee Bean GU!!! Ok, turn towards last 4 miles. Look at watch, 2:39:59 MAYBE POSSIBLE.

Mile 10: 2:11:38  Pass the Gu station. Take the ice cold sponge! Try to move faster.

Mile 10.5: Look at watch, push harder. Lots of weaving, this SUCKS!
Mile 11: Look at watch, damn! Try to atleast cut ahead of 2:46:09 (last race time)

Mile 11.75: Girl down... not me. 3 people stop with her, I speed up to...
Mile 12: .... and tell the Crew to send for help
Mile 12.1: we are on a freakin' wall to wall curving sidewalk. I can't weave around anyone anymore. Shit!
Mile 13: Try to speed up the hill since the walls around gone... haven't looked at watch in a while... I now I am f 'ed.
Mile 13-13.1: My usual Sprint to the finish is non-existant. I am done. Just look for family, wave and cross the line. I didn't even throw my hands up for the Rock Star photo finish. I am feeling totally pissed at myself already.
Finish Line: 2:53:26    (Pace: 13:14)    I spend the rest of the day, oh hell who am I kidding, I am still running over in my head what I should have down at mile 7 to have given me a better chance for my 2:39:59 or better goal.

So, I am VERY hard on myself. I am not looking for a handout of "you did great" "you did it, I can't/did't/would have stopped...etc" I am just a natural competator. I am always hard on myself. That is my way of life..... welcome to my world.

Back to the race;
I loved having my family there to actually see me finish this time around. And to see me during the race too! It was great! I was disappointed by the finishline grabs though. It consisted ICE COLD TOWELS (fav!! and best part), NOT COLD water, NOT ENOUGH cytomax (didn't get one), Some oranges that they were STILL CUTTING, popcicles that were half melted and half broke to the ground before I got it to my mouth, 2x2 inch protein bars that were GROSS, and ohh yeah- that was it! What the hell?! So I headed over to the beer garden to get my free beer..... no way in hell was I going to wait 45 minutes or more for a free beer. I need to get moving to the hotel to get out of the soaked clothes, take a shower and get us checked out in 45 minutes time.

ALL IN ALL: I need to get in another half asap to make my time better and myself feel happier.

Ok on those celebs: Well the only one I beat was Al Roker...... 3:20:58. All I have to say is "WAY TO ROCK IT AL!!! CONGRATS!!! MAYBE I WILL SEE YOU AT ANOTHER SOMEDAY SOON!!"

E! News: 2:20:05
NYC Housewife: 2:21:40
YUCKY Jake: 2:23:05
Married Bachelor stars: 2:42:05 (they ran together the whole time!)
The Gates: 2:44:31

The Winner Patrick Rizzo 1:06:19
The Female Winner Tera Moody: 1:13:36
Both Illionis natives

A little review...
The Injinji Socks!!!

THEY DID THE JOB!! Just a small blister on the small toe and a tiny one under big toe! BAM!

As for injuries....

.... A major rubbage (burn from shorts that have never done it before) on the inner left thigh.
The Day ended with getting checked out of hotel, taking the bus to Union station, eating a Lo Carb burrito salad from a "like chipotles" place at the station along with a bowl of white chocolate TCBY!!
Then a 12 hour+ Train ride back home.


Worst part: falling asleep in window seat with hubby and sleeping littleman on his lap. Waking up to asleep right foot and cramping right leg, jumping up to fix the issue and not being able to move... sleeping littleman on hubby remember. Totally didnt drink enough water saturday. But a little after 3am, we got home. Got the kids back to bed and ourselves too. And was woken at 9am from kids. Spent 2 hours in our king size bed with kids watching Happy Feet. Then suffered though the rest of the day before back to the grind Tuesday morning.

The End.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Chicago Part 1: The Wedding and Vacation

Stayed up all night getting the house spotless (or close to it), we set out to our first train ride. Amtrak out of Newton at 3am to Chicago Thursday Morning. Kids were excited when we woke them up to get to the station. But after maybe a hour, they were both out cold again for a few hours. Must be nice to be under 4 feet tall.

Great Grandma and Great Grandpa were a nice distraction for the kids too. Having 4 adults to wrangle 2 kids under 6 years old. There were a couple movies watched on the laptop. A game or more of Uno. Lots of playing with Truck, Tractors and Combines. A good amount of time on the Nintendo DS. Some book reading. Some music listening and phone playing. And of course some napping. All in all a descent trip there.

We arrived to our first hotel, The Willows on Surf Street in Lincoln Park district, just after 5pm. We got settled and heading to my cousins rehearsal dinner at a Little Mexican food place just less than a mile walk. It was yummy. (plus MARGARITAS!!!!-- the kids had virgin strawberry daiquiri's) We walked back- however I was exhausted and Margarita filled, to amazed I make it back- to the hotel, showered, bathed and to bed. I was out in 10 minutes flat, easy. (just ask the hubby, apparently the kids were up a while. **sorry babe**

Friday morning, we got up and all 6 of us (my 4 and great gparents) headed for a little walk to the  Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park. It was KID AWESOME!! Lots of things to learn and lots of hands on things!! We all even played with it all. It is a MUST STOP for anyone with younger kiddos, or adults that want to learn about being green and nature. :o) And there was an AWESOME Butterfly room!! They are everywhere and anywhere, and you have to check your body before you can leave the room. There was a cool bench on our way out, so BigGirl decided to "become the sculpture". So Beautiful. 

**this was the least expensive place we attended on the trip: 2 seniors, 1 child (BigGirl), 1 free child (littleman), 1 student (hubby), 1 educator (me- hey the school district gave me an educators ID for coaching!)= $29!!!**

After the museum, we went for lunch at a place that a very savvy friend of mine suggested we go (lets call her CityMom) Lou Malnati's Pizzaeria. It was about a mile walk, LittleMan slept the walk there and the majority of the 30 minute cooktime wait. Smart kiddo. They have TO DIE FOR Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. We ordered "The Lou" with the World Famous Buttercrust. (Mushrooms, fresh spinach, sliced tomatos, with mozzarella, romano and cheddar cheese. HEAVEN!

** FYI- the mail their pizza's anywhere in the USA!

After yummy lunch, we headed back the to hotal to relax, shower and get ready for the wedding. We ran into some relatives a block from the hotel. So I ran a couple errands with a cousin and sent the family back to the hotel. So 30 minutes to and hour later of SPEED walking around the shops, I can feel a good blister on my right foot and good rubbing in the croch area. G.R.E.A.T. I get right back to hotel, take shower, deal with blister (thank god for my flat flat flat sandals that I am wearing with long dress that night) and apply BodyGlide to rubbage. I get the rest of the family ready and we are out the door, into the shuttle and off to the wedding about a mile down the road.

**no shuttle will be bringing us back, we taxi or walk it. (damn blister)

The wedding is beautiful, a few tears are shedd (not mine thankfully), the appetizers are yummy (fried squid!!), the OPEN BAR is gracious, the kids are deal-able, the dinner is SOOOO GOOD that I can't finish my meal, the cake a yummy layed white AND chocolate, with raspberry jam and chocolate cream fillings with white icing. The kids fall asleep before the first dance starts. So the great gparents offer to take kids back to hotel to bed, so we get them a cab and off they go. Hubby and I stay to dance and OPEN BAR (remember) for another hour or so, then we walk back to hotel. (Blister is healing nicely already, by some miracle and the rubbage is too! WOOHOO!!) We get back and kids are sleeping in gparents room, so we each crash in a different bed.

** I know, but I was BEAT and relaxed from the OPEN BAR. And hubby wants to watch TV a little that doesnt involve cartoons.

Saturday morning: We get up and check out of the first hotel. Sad to leave the wonderful area and really nice hotel, but there is more to do, and the next hotel is literally 1 block from Grant Park -the ROck N Roll 1/2 marathon location. So we get a Taxi and we are off to the Travelodge Downton Chicago. We get there and we can't check in until after 3pm, but they have a luggage storage service in a secure room. So we leave it all and start our day. We are having a family day (aka my 4 only- great gparents on their own). So, my 4 decide to go to see The Willis Tower (aka Sears Tower). We only have a short walk, maybe a mile. We arrive and are told the wait so far is about an hour. (this is from security thru all the works to the exiting at top from elevator) No problem, nothing else to do. However, we get thru security fast! I accidentally cut about 20+ people in line (seriously, accident and no one said a thing-only know because hubby pointed it out about 2 minutes later- whoops). We purchase our 3 tickets (plus 1 free LittleMan) = $44. We skip the "info" movie, and get in line to the elevators, after maybe 20 minutes, we discover that it is going to be revolving doors, we ask a worker what to do, and there is a stroller/wheelchair door, YES! We skip past 60+ people, aka NOT cutting, we have a reason to be ahead. :o) We get in the elevator with 29 other people (yes I counted) and we head up 103 floors! And crap it is fast, you just keep yawning or something to keep your ears pooping. And at each level that you are as high as another tall building, like the Eiffel Tower, it tells you that on a little TV in the elevator. NICE Distraction. We get to the top, and well, the picture talk for themselves.....

The Willis Tower

reflection from the mirrored elevator ceiling of willis tower

**we did spend the $22 for the professional skydeck picture of us, if I get it scanned soon, I will post it in another blog.

We leave the tower and walk a half mile to a bus stop that will take us to the McCormick Place so I can get my race registration done. I try to shop a little at the Expo, but to crowded and kids are getting hungry, antsy, etc. So I leave spending nothing in there. WOW.

A stop along our walk

We grab a cab from there to the Shedd Aquarium. When we get there a few dollars later, there is a nice outdoor cafe with tree shaded tables in the park area. NICE. So we order the nice thing on the CityMom's must eats, Chicago Dogs. They are onions, peppers, dill pickle, tomatos, and maybe more stuff hotdogs. THEY ARE YUMMY!!

The kids have pretzels, our chips, and we have been downing the water all vacation so far. Major help on the money when you aren't buying drinks!!

We then head over to the Aquarium, wait FOREVER in the Stroller/wheelchair line. (Many strollers) We get in and it is AWESOME!! Their are 3 Floors! Tons of things to see and do, yes hands on with a few things, like star fish. A 4-D 15 minute movie experience. We choose Happy Feet, and it was good. When water splashed on the scene, it did at us too. When bubbles were on screen, they were at us too. When someone got poked in on scene, our backs did too. The floor shook, the lights changed colors, etc. We spent a few hours in the aquarium, and we could have spent a couple more easy.

 **Purchase our 3 tickets (+ 1 free Littleman) = $74.

large a** anaconda!!

My FAV pic!! Octopus!

We were so tired, and we still had to check in at the hotel, find dinner somewhere close, and get my race morning stuff ready. We are taxi'd back to the hotel, only about a mile or so. But we were beat. We got into our hotel room, and I wanted to cry. It was such a dramatic difference from our fancy hotel to this one. This is one of those hotel that you dont bring kids, it is just a night sleep (not a good night sleep) and hot water. And it was a TIGHT fit. We were 7 stories up in a teen-digit high building and the 2 elevators were small, we had to wait for 4 elevators before we could go downstair to find us dinner. By this point, I was on the verge of tears and/or a massive angry fit. However, we got downstairs, walked a couple blocks and found a cute cafe 2 blocks down, The Artist Cafe. (It has a website, amazed by this considering the authentic style of it) I had my pasta- yummy, the kids shared a cheese burger platter, and hubby had a Ruben platter. Made it through dinner and got back to the hotel. Great Gparents got back and took the kids to their room for a bit so I could try to breath and get set for the mornings race. We finally got to bed, each taking a kid, and somehow got to sleep. Worsts nights sleep either of us as even had. I had the BigGirl "leech" sleeper, and Hubby had the LittleMan bedhogger........ to be continued.