Tuesday, October 26, 2010

my littlest running buddy


This is my littlest running buddy (a.k.a. my son, Jaron).  His training wheels came off in July and he has been riding his bike almost every day since.  He especially loves to ride next to me while I run.  I especially love this too!  For one, it allows me to get a little workout in during the day, before hubby and big sis get home.  For two, I allows me to be right next to him as he rides and correct his steering when he gets a little distracted (like when he looks straight up into the sky to see a bird, or to the left to see a dog, or to the right to see what's in the ditch, or straight down to swerve around a pine cone...).

Don't let his 12-inch rims fool you, he has already biked over 30 miles this month!

P.S. Is there anything more adorable than the sound effects of a 4-year old boy on his motorcycletruck, trainbike?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Should I give him the credit?

Maybe.

A few weeks ago, I ran the You Go Girl 10K in Tacoma, WA placing 2nd in my age group, 7th overall, and with the fastest race pace I’ve ever ran, scored myself this adorable pearl bracelet!


I was quickly humbled, however, for the following reasons:

1) The race officials misspelled my last name, so the race results have no record of me running by my real name.
2) My personal info. (City & State) was not included in the results listing, either.
3) When searching my bib number, there is not a single race photo of me (This one is my fault. I overdressed, as usual, and took my top layer displaying my number off in the 2nd mile…tying it around my waist and out of camera shot for the rest of the race).
4) Lastly, my husband was late getting to the finish line (so I don’t even have an eyewitness that I finished!).

If it wasn’t for the bracelet (and a sore hamstring), I might think the whole thing was just a dream! I mean, honestly, if I had a Google-stalker, he (or she) wouldn’t even know I ran this race…and certainly wouldn’t know to be proud of me and want to Google-stalk me all the more. How frustrating!

Anyway, getting back on track: I spent the majority of the summer running sporadically, with very little direction. With 6 weeks to go before the race, I asked my hubby, Dave, to write me a training program that could whip my butt into shape, quickly! He did just that. He wrote me a killer workout schedule (I mean, it almost killed me). But, it also helped me focus, kept me motivated and even got me excited to work hard!

So, should he get the credit for the end result? He’s a teacher, so he would probably expect partial credit, at least. Yeah, I’ll give him that. I’ll give him partial credit…but I won’t give him my bracelet.

btw:  The 6-week 10K workout is posted on a tab above.  That's not like sharing test answers, is it? I can't get in trouble for this, right?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Let's hear it for "the girls!"

The idea for this post came to me today, partly because October is breast cancer awareness month and partly because I watched the movie Footloose last night and have been humming “Let’s hear it for the boy” most of the day (never mind that Kevin Bacon’s co-star, Lori Singer, doesn’t appear to own a bra during the filming of that slightly controversial, very sweaty blockbuster hit). Myth #1: Wearing a bra causes breast cancer. Myth #2: Wearing deodorant causes breast cancer.

I think that everyone who has seen the film would agree that there is an awful lot of moving going on and not enough hydrating (unless you count the few scenes where the actors are drinking beer). Myth #3: Drinking water from plastic bottles (especially those left in a hot car) causes breast cancer. Myth #4: Drinking red wine can prevent breast cancer.

Like the well-intentioned folks of Beaumont, TX, we tend to create our own solutions to hard-to-answer problems. In Footloose, the town made it illegal to dance, believing this was the solution that would keep the youth of the community from becoming corrupt. Similarly, it is out of fear that we create our own myths and rumors about how to prevent a disease we feel we have very little control over. In both cases, the plan backfires. Myth #5: A diagnosis of breast cancer is an automatic death sentence.

In the movie, corruption spreads throughout the town. Teachers are burning books and teens are driving across the state line to party. Even the pastor’s daughter “has been kissed a lot.” Myth #6: Birth control pills cause breast cancer. Myth #7: Breast cancer is determined by breast size.

It’s true that many of the risk factors associated with the development of breast cancer are out of our control to prevent (genetics, age, etc…). However, there are a few things every person (Myth #8: Only women can develop breast cancer) can do to reduce the risk of developing breast cancer as well as other forms of disease:

Eat healthy
Exercise
Control your weight
Don’t smoke
Limit alcohol intake
Routine screening (Myth #9: Mammograms cause breast cancer)

Seems fairly obvious, right? If you want to be healthy, act healthy. That’s not a guilt-trip, nor is it a demand or command. It’s an invitation to get up…it’s our time to dance!

Oh yeah and one last thing, having a risk factor for breast cancer does not mean you will get the disease (that’s myth #10 and my personal favorite to debunk!).

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Honey Bucket...what a lie.

I can’t believe I am starting my blog up again with a post about port-o-pots. I can’t help it. I live near a bunch of berry fields sprinkled with bright blue pot-o-pots. Everywhere I look I see them, and as they say, “in sight, in mind” or is it, “out of sight, out of mind,” either way.

I hate port-o-pots just as much as the next person, but sometimes I also kind of love them. This is honestly a love- hate (mostly hate) relationship and here’s why:

Hate reason #1: They always smell like rotting colon. Even the blue disinfectant seems to amplify the stench.

Hate reason #2: People always forget to move the little slider on the door to ‘occupied’ when they are ‘occupying them’ and I always seem to be the idiot who opens the door on these unsuspecting people. What I hate the most, though, is that I immediately apologize to them every time, taking total responsibility for their lack of attention to detail.

Hate reason #3: I was the victim of a terrible port-o-pot prank at the emotionally-tender age of 13. Sorry, I can’t go into detail…doctor’s orders.

Hate reason #4: I suffer from a mild case of claustrophobia (probably due to hate reason #3), and if you haven’t noticed, one can barely turn around inside the standard-sized port-o-pot.

Hate reason #5: Flies.

Hate reason #6: The stuff that comes out of people is gross and, try as I might to avoid looking directly into “the pot”, I can’t resist a quick glance, sometimes even a gaze! I don’t know why I do this, but I think it may be due to an irrational fear that if I don’t, something or someone might grab me from out of the poopy-blue murk below and pull me in or (and this is gross) jump straight into my butt hole.

With those reasons being said, I also love the port-o-pot, but for only one reason and one reason alone: because when you gotta go, you gotta go! And, the urgency of this fact can easily negate any and all hate reasons to not use it… plain and simple.

A little advice to my fellow female runners out there: If you avoid fun runs, races, and other activities where port-o-pots are the only facilities available, look for “all girl” events (no offense, boys). I ran in the You Go Girl 10K today and even at the end of the race the port-o-pots were impressively clean.

A question: Are all port-o-pots fair game for usage (construction sites, school yards,…berry fields)? Sometimes I wonder, but not long enough to stop me from using one in a pinch (no pun intended).

One can never be too prepared before entering.
 
I'm ashamed of this post.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Is painting the same as running?

Let's see...I'm tired, sweaty, smelly, slightly sun-burned and ready for bed by 9:00.  Yep, painting sounds a lot like running!

So, maybe I shouldn't feel so guilty about taking a break from running, while I am consumed with summer projects around the house.  And, maybe there's no need to join an expensive gym or embark on a complicated exercise schedule when there are hundreds of chores to do right here at home.  Just be sure that when you're doing everyday tasks, you're performing them with conviction... you know, with some real vim and vigor!

Here is a list of chores and the corresponding calories you can burn by doing about 30 minutes of activity:
Making the bed:  94 calories
Washing the dishes: 144 Calories
Vacuuming: 196 Calories (How many people actually move the furniture?  I'm curious.) 
Raking the lawn: 206 Calories
Grocery shopping (and my personal favorite chore): 190 calories (Unless you're at Costco, eating samples the entire time!).

Here's my husband showing some serious vim and vigor...and no shame!

Have a great week doing whatever you do to burn calories.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

This first-time gardener is too easily impressed.

Our family started our first vegetable garden this year and although the spring started out cold and wet and nothing seemed to want to grow, after just a few days of summer sunshine and warmer temps our garden burst into life!

This is Faith's sugar pie pumpkin plant.  Yep, that is just one plant! 

Do you know what plant this flower blooms from?  An eggplant!

Yellow summer squash!

My kids love beets.  I know, they're weird!

Faith's carrots.

Kids eat more vegetables when they grow them! Try it.  Oh yeah, and my daughter says her favorite chore is weeding!

The jury is still out on the Topsy Turvy tomato planter.  My poor plant spends all it's time trying to be upright.

I planted this tomato plant at the same time as the Topsy Turvy.  He seems happier, don't you think?

Almost knee-high by the 13th of July? Hummm....

Green beans!

Baby fennel is so cute!  I have no idea what I'll do with it when it grows up. 


Did you know that chives deter aphids?  I planted several plants in my rose garden.  Plus, they are great on baked potatoes and come back year after year!
What's your favorite vegetable to grow?  I'm already planning for next year...

Friday, June 25, 2010

Sorry I've been blogged down lately...

…but enough is enough already! I hope I haven’t lost all my “running buddies” as a result of my unexcused absence from the wonderful world of blogging. I’ve had some wonderful post ideas over the past 4 weeks, but haven’t been able to find the time to actually write/post them. I started this blog as a way to stay in touch with friends and fellow runners as well as provide a place of encouragement and motivation for everyone who might read it. I’m sorry I’ve been slacking on the job blog lately. I am hoping to resume posting to at least once a week. Let me know if you have a post topic you’d like to see on the blog or any other ideas on how to make the blog better.

Have a great weekend!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Breaking the cycle (with something short and hopefully sweet).

I usually start running to get back into shape. Then I think, “why not train for a race of some kind?” Then I run a race and think, “why not train for a longer race?” Then I complete a longer race and think, “why not train for an even longer race?” At this point, my life is usually becoming somewhat consumed by my running schedule as I train for longer and longer races. At some point, however, I always get too burned out to continue. In many cases, I get injured or just become too busy with “life” to sustain a workout regimen that has morphed into something rather insane. So, I concede and give myself sabbatical from running for a while. Cycle complete.

This summer I’m breaking the cycle and trying something new! I’m training for a race that is short and fast. Exciting, right?! I will be training all summer to run a 10K in the fall…as fast as I can! Instead of increasing my mileage each week, I’ll be working on speed and running in a completely different way, with different goals. My personal trainer/athletic trainer/conditioning coach/husband is stoked about this. I’m hoping his excitement stems from the idea of seeing more of me and not losing me to longer and longer workouts (like he has in the past), but it could also be because he will finally have his very own personal, human “guinea pig” to experiment with (one that he doesn’t have to pay from a research grant or bribe with extra credit). I kind of think it is the later, but I’m a little afraid to ask.

Anyone else feel stuck in a cycle or have any tips on getting faster (sometimes I feel like my legs only have one speed)?  As I eluded, this is an experiment.  I'll prepare my thesis and be ready to defend it after the 10K this fall.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

We get to inspire our kids...

I had an interesting conversation with my 6-year old daughter a few days ago. While I was helping her dry her hair after a bath, she said, I don’t think I ever want to get married, but I would like to have a baby. Do you have to get married to have a baby?” A little stunned, I quickly answered Yes.” And that, of course, was immediately followed by a why?” from her. Trying to delay “the talk” in its entirety for another day (or year), I simply explained that God wants children to have both a mom and a dad. She started nodding and said, Oh, I know why. It’s so that if the mom wants to go for a run, there’ll be someone around to watch the kids.” I told her she was exactly right!

Later, after reciting the conversation to my husband (and listening to him laugh out loud), I thought about my daughters logic and couldn’t help but feel pleased, not only because I dodged “the talk”, but because in her little mind, she defined me, at least in part, as a runner. Even more important to me than that, is the fact that she thinks of my running as a normal activity that moms do. It’s apparent, by this example and numerous others, that my actions directly influence the way my daughter thinks and no doubt will also have an impact on the decisions she makes in her future. I’m not saying she’ll be a runner or want to be an athlete of any kind for that matter, I’m just recognizing the incredible responsibility I have as her mom to set a good example. This is a terrifying, challenging and rewarding task for any mom who wishes to encourage her kids, motivate them, and yes… maybe even inspire them!

I'm definitely a work in progress... so excuse me now while I surf the library website for parenting resources. I’m going to need to brief myself several times for the day when she asks me “more serious” questions.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

It’s a dog eat dog…I mean, dog eat runner world.

(Cottonwood Creek, Colorado Springs, CO: 2008)

I see the beast heading straight toward me.

My heart starts racing and I look away. Almost immediately, I look back and our eyes lock. Even though he is yards away, I’m positive he can already sense, maybe even smell, the terror that I feel rapidly engulfing my entire body. He’s closer now, so I move to my left. He moves to my left. Like a fool trying to juke him again, I side-step to my right. He mirrors my action with no hesitation. Having no time to sort them, random thoughts and words flood my mind… Is he running faster now? Should I slow down? Should I speed up? Should I grab a stick? A rock? Where is his owner?teeth, slobber, rabies, leash law, pepper spray, pooper scooper, help!  

Stop thinking!

Nevermind, start thinking!

Focus. 

HE IS RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME...

Taking a deep, possibly final breath, I squeeze my eyelids closed and leap (I’d say hurdle, but my form is way off). With relief, I instantly welcome the solid, dirt trail beneath my feet once again and immediately look back. In full stride, the dog hasn’t missed a step... and neither have I.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Loving me some Brown Cow!

Yes, I know...I'm weird.  I'm writing about yogurt.  I've been contemplating whether I should write this post for a few hours now and have finally decided to throw all dignity out the window and go for it (judge me if you want to).  I love this yogurt!!  It has nothing to do with running, pre/post workout consumption, or anything else remotely related to exercise...I just love it and want the whole blog world to know!

A few posts ago, I wrote about healthy, yummy food finds (and buying more natural, organic foods)...well, this is one of those finds!  I stumbled across it on sale at a local grocery store this week and have became an instant fan.  Sweetened with natural honey and maple syrup with nothing else added, it really is "all natural."

I am limiting myself to one Brown Cow a day (vanilla is my favorite) and hiding them from everyone else in my family.  I told you, I'm weird.

Exciting news:  An anonymous reader sent Running Buddies an awesome "little something" for our next give away.  Watch for more details in the next few weeks.  In the meantime, try Brown Cow for yourself and let me know what you think (and forgive me for such a lame post...).

Sunday, April 18, 2010

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em. If you can't join 'em, write about 'em.


Most runners know that tomorrow is “the big day” in Beantown. Over 25,000 people will attempt to run the 114th edition of the Boston Marathon. I don’t know what my fascination is with this race. It just intrigues me so much! I guess for one, it is the oldest and most prestigious annual marathon around. It was first held in 1897. For two, the legendary race course winds runners through eight Massachusetts cities and towns. That sounds like fun (plus, I’ve never been to Boston)! For three, you have to qualify for this race (which is a lot easier said than done…trust me). And for four, I really want to see a baseball game in Fenway Park! Marathon day always includes a home Red Sox game.

Two years ago, I trained for a marathon with the goal of qualifying for Boston. On an absolutely beautiful day in Eugene, OR, in front of a bunch of cheering family and friends, I missed my qualifying time (3:40) by 3 minutes! Since the heartache occurred, I haven’t made any other attempts at reaching this goal. I haven’t given up, I’m just waiting for a time when my schedule will allow crazy long runs again. I’m also waiting to age a bit more. You know… so I can get into a slower qualifying bracket! :)

Some interesting facts:

*There hasn’t been an American winner (male or female) since 1983. Seems we are always chasing the Kenyans, Ethiopians and Russians. Cheer for Ryan Hall or Meb Keflezighi if you want USA to end in front.

*Women were not allowed to run the Boston Marathon until 1971. Several women snuck into the race before they were allowed, running without bib numbers or being disqualified at the end.

*The total prize money distributed among the winners will be $806,000.  There's some motivation.

*Approximately 500,000 spectators line the 26.2-mile course annually. I sure hope there are a lot of port-o-pots... and hand sanitizer!

Go Boston!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Shady Sunscreen

Spring is here and summer is on it’s way! For someone who lives in the rainy Pacific Northwest, the mere idea of sunshine couldn’t make me happier. In addition to smiles and better running weather, more sun also means more sunscreen. All summer long, I lather generous amounts on myself, my kids, and even my husband (If he will let me). Recently, I heard a special report on oxybenzone, a chemical found in almost all leading brands of sunscreen. It blocks UVB rays and prevents sunburn, but it has also been linked to allergies, hormone disruption, cell damage, and low birth weight. In addition, it does nothing to block harmful UVA rays. UVA radiation hastens the progression of skin cancer, suppresses the immune system, and ages the skin over time. After hearing the report, I quickly checked the 3 tubes of sunscreen that I could easily access in my house, and sure enough… they all contained oxybenzone. Then, I ran to my car to check a 4th tube I knew I had stashed in the glove box…it also contained oxybenzone. Then, I did what any normal human being would do... I loaded my kids in their car seats, got in my car, and drove to Wal-Mart to buy some new sunscreen.

Anyway, if you are like me and want a sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays but don’t want to be contaminated by a chemical that could have harmful long-term health effects, look for a sunscreen that contains the active ingredient Zinc Oxide and use an SPF of at least 30. Be warned, this isn’t easy to find. I looked through every spray, bottle, and tube around the MASSIVE sunscreen island in Wal-Mart and could only find 1 small tube that contained zinc. It may be easier to order online or find at a local pharmacy.  And, remember...it's better to run before 10am and after 4pm, if possible.

Here’s a list of the Top Ten Sunscreens (according to the Environmental Working Group):

1. Keys Soap Solar Rx Therapeutic Sunblock, SPF 30
2. Trukid Sunny Days Facestick Mineral Sunscreen UVA/UVB Broad Spectrum, SPF 30+
3. California Baby Sunblock Stick No Fragrance, SPF 30+
4. Badger Sunscreen, SPF 30
5. Marie Veronique Skin Therapy Sun Serum
6. Lavera Sunscreen Neutral, SPF 40
7. Vanicream Sunscreen, SPF 35
8. UV Natural Sunscreen, SPF 30+
9. Sun Science Sport Formula, SPF 30
10. Soleo Organics Sunscreen all natural Sunscreen, SPF 30+

Sunscreen business aside, is anyone else excited for sunny, warmer days!?

Friday, April 2, 2010

Have seconds

Sometimes it’s funny the little things in life that make you think about really big things in life. Sometimes, it’s just a song…

Before heading out the door for a run this week, I reached for my ipod and, as usual, it was out of juice. So, what choice did I have, but to grab my hubby’s fully charged ipod just sitting there asking to be used! Listening to Dave’s ipod is always a treat for me, not just because it’s charged more often than mine, but because I love his playlist. I love it because… well, because it is just sooo…HIM! From Def Leopard and Journey’s Greatest hits, to stand-up comedy sketches from Jim Gaffigan and full sit-com downloads of Scrubs, I’m never quite sure what I am going to hear, but it’s always guaranteed to be entertaining!

Well, this particular day was no exception, a mile or so into my run, the Relient K song, “Who I am hates who I’ve been” started playing. Everyone should have this song on their playlist…It’s fast and will make you run faster! It’s a fact. I dare you to challenge it! No, I double-dog dare you!! Click here.

Anyway, when the song ended, I immediately played it again and then again. The next couple times I played it, I actually listened to the words (this is where my mind started wondering, my thoughts got a little less coherent, and my run went by a lot faster). The lyrics made me think about a quote I recently read on my nephew’s Facebook page. It said, “Unless life hands you water and sugar, your lemonade is gonna suck!” I thought about all the things that can happen to us in life that “sour” our attitude, poison our behavior, and change the way we see ourselves. Sadly, many of life’s bitter experiences are totally out of our control and may actually be the result of another person’s selfish actions and decisions or the result of an unavoidable personal tragedy, or both. Regardless, it affects us and ultimately helps to shape us into the people who we are. That’s not always a bad thing, but it’s not always a good thing either. It makes me think that a little self-evaluation every now and then might not be a bad idea. You know, just to make sure we’re still loving ourselves…or at least liking ourselves (or not loving ourselves too much…whatever the case may be). This song was somewhat convicting to me. It made me stop (not literally...I was running after all) and ask myself “Who am I? Is this who I want to be? Or better yet…Is this who I was intended to be?”

I won’t go into the personal details of my answers (believe me, you wouldn’t want to read the details), I’ll just say, “who I am IS NOT who I’ve been and who I’ve been will take a second chance….” I was beautifully and wonderfully made…we all were. So, that’s how I want to see myself and that’s how I want others to see me. Thankfully, we get as many chances to change as we are brave enough to take. And, second chances are a good thing…a little bit like water or sugar...kind of like...
lemonade!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Have Asics, Will Travel

As all runners know, there is no better way to explore than by on foot.

Most of the races I have completed have been out-of-state. I've found this to be motivating for a few reasons. First off, if I'm traveling for a race, I better train for it! Also, I tend to enjoy the race route more if it's a surprise and I can be distracted by the adventure of what's behind each turn. Finally, there's no better post-race reward than finding yourself in a fun or relaxing destination!

Outside of races, I've also been fortunate to incorporate running into many of my travels- packing along my trusty Asics and devising my own route. Some of the highlights of my trips include running up the Champs Elysees in Paris, training along the city seawall in Apia, Samoa, and jogging along Hoan Kiem Lake (pictured above) in Hanoi, Vietnam. Here, I witnessed residents lifting weights, doing calisthenics, and performing various routines in time with choreographed music piped through speakers along the shoreline- talk about a cultural experience!

Even in my hometown of Seattle, I've found that by running with no plan other than 'this road looks interesting, I'll turn here', I've come across beautiful neighborhood streets, new businesses (including yummy post-run restaurants), and undiscovered vantage points that have left me with a greater appreciation for where I live. I've often thought it was a shame that running tours aren't more prevalent in major cities.

Now that running buddies are finding their way to this blog from around the country and around the world, I would love to hear from you about a time when you've laced up and set out to explore in your hometown or beyond. Any tips on fun destination races would be appreciated as well- the adventure must go on!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Seeds of Change

When I started this running blog in January, I was excited about the idea of motivating myself and others to a healthier lifestyle through running. At that same time, I decided I wanted to start feeding my family better. My husband immediately wrinkled his nose up at the very thought of what that might mean… Three months later, not much about our life has changed…except that I’m shopping smarter, we’re eating better, my kid’s are none the wiser (about what they are eating, anyway), and my husband is on board with the whole thing! Ahhhhhhh…the sweet little seeds of change.

So, why did I wait so long to make nutrition a priority in our lifestyle? After all, I did live in Eugene, Oregon for several years (granola capital of the world!... I think.) and Colorado Springs, Colorado (voted healthiest city in the Country by Outside magazine in 2009). Two reasons.

1) Money.
2) MONEY!

I thought buying organic/healthier foods would be too expensive. In general, healthier products (better cuts of meat, organic vegetables and whole grain products) are more expensive. But, when I finally got serious about making healthier shopping choices, I discovered that it is possible to buy better, healthier foods and not ‘break the bank.’ In fact, most of the big grocery store chains have their own organic brands that are much less expensive than the national brands. I also researched the most important produce items to buy organic (those that generally contain more pesticides) and those that are okay to buy conventionally-grown. Here’s the EWG’s quick reference sheet that you can download for yourself: http://www.foodnews.org/walletguide.php

It has been a challenge for me to familiarize myself with what seems to be a culture all its own! But, it has also been a lot of fun. The best part…we are trying new foods. New, really good foods!! Here are my top three finds so far:

3) 100% whole grain tortillas: Same price as regular flour tortillas but with a lot more flavor! Why didn't I buy these a long time ago?

2) Smart Chicken ground chicken: I cannot rave enough about this product. You can use it anywhere you would use ground beef. We have put it in tacos, spaghetti, chili & enchiladas. Even my skeptical husband, who again wrinkled his nose up at me the first time he saw me browning it (his face is going to stay like that if he doesn't stop it), will rave about it now! I buy it in the “chub” pack for $1.59/lbs at my regular grocery store. That’s cheaper than the leanest ground beef! Here’s a link to their website if you want to find a store near you. http://pages.smartchicken.com/pages/default.aspx

1) Seeds of Change Greek Feta Vinaigrette salad dressing: It is awesome, amazing, marvelous, terrific, wonderful and super good! You should really go and buy it, right now! I bought it on sale this week for $2.47!! Read about it here:
http://www.seedsofchangefoods.com/our_foods/category.aspx?id=salad_dressing

Love at first taste!

Every grocery trip is an adventure for me now. What’s better for an OCD driven runner than the challenge of eating better and saving money? I’m just wondering, what should I try next? Leave me a comment or email me (mailto:myrunningbuddies@hotmail.com). Point me down an aisle and I am sooo there! Give me a coupon and I am sooo there, even faster!! 

Organic Safeway brand

Organic Fred Meyer brand

Organic Albertson brand

Shop smart, Eat well, Run fast...be a triple threat!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Eggplant and Turkey Meatballs


1/2 eggplant, peeled and diced
1 lb. ground turkey breast
1/4 c. freshly grated parmesan
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 c. bread crumbs
1 egg white
1/4 tsp. basil
freshly ground pepper
cooking spray
1 c. marinara

Place eggplant in pot, cover with water and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until softened. Meanwhile, combine all other ingredients (except marinara sauce and cooking spray) in a bowl. Allow eggplant to cool slightly, then mash. Add to bowl and mix - then form into meatballs. Spray nonstick pan and brown meatballs. Place half marinara sauce in casserole dish. Add meatballs, top with remaining sauce and bake at 375 F about 20 minutes until bubbly


Running Buddies Review:

These meatballs have a lot of flavor and were delicious when I paired them with spaghetti (but honestly, they would be a yummy meal as is). The best part is that these meatballs are excellent as leftovers or just divided the prepared meat in half and cooked the remainder as meatloaf the next day (worked perfectly for my family of two).

Thanks Judy for the low fat, high protein meal! The eggplant is a great way to add a little vegetable to your meal!


If you have a healthy recipe you would like to submit to the Running Buddies, please email myrunningbuddies@hotmail.com


Monday, March 15, 2010

A COUPLE things...

Every day, I tune my radio to my favorite local radio station and it plays, for the most part, all day long in my house. Lately, I have been hearing an ad for a local gym. Their slogan: “Couples who workout together…stick together.” Not the best choice of slogan... For me, it provokes a mental smell of armpit, a mental taste salt and a mental image (that I won’t describe) all at the same time! It’s not pleasant. But, when I hear the ad, I try to put all my 'less than appealing mental thoughts' aside because I love what the gym is trying to promote. Strong, happy, healthy couples!!

I love to workout with my husband! Not only is he the best “Dog chaser-awayer, woman-protector, boo-boo-fixer” that I know, he is so fun to be around! He makes me laugh constantly and can make any workout fly by, guaranteed! (sorry, I don’t rent him out…well, if the price is right...hmmmm....these are trying economic times...). Anyway, with our schedules and two small children, we take advantage of every opportunity we get to work out together. Case in point, a few months ago, our church had a “date night” (aka free childcare!) so, we dropped the kids off the minute we were allowed to do so. We quickly drove home and changed into our running gear and headed to the lake. A planned “3 mile run and movie date” turned into a longer and longer run with no movie at all! We had a great time together, but if I remember correctly we did receive a few strange looks when we returned to the church to pick up the kids - red, hot & dripping with sweat.

Here are a few reasons I think working out as a couple is so great:

Quality time together: It may not be the ideal “date” (for you!), but it’s a great time to be together and talk. If you plan it into your schedule daily/weekly, it may just become your favorite time of the day/week!

Common goals: Having a goal is exciting! It will give you something to work toward – together! Plus, it will give you a lot of new stuff to talk about.

Encouragement: It’s a lot easier to understand someone and empathize with them if you are going through the same thing. Working out together or training for the same goal will inspire you to encourage one another (and that means, you’ll say nice things to each other!).  Try this one: next time you see your work out sweetie, say: "Wow, have you been working out?" (followed by a little wink).  You won't be disappointed with the results!

Celebrate success together: Any way you want.  No need to elaborate!  ;)

Friday, March 12, 2010

What a SWEET winner!!

                               
Thanks for all the mouth-watering comments! They were so much fun to read. I wish I could send each and everyone of you a box of Cadbury Creme eggs... but there's no way they would ever make it to the post office!!
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Steffeny11 (a/k/a Steffen) is the winner of our tasty giveaway! Congrats!! She should also win a seperate prize for the longest comment in blog history under the "Running Sucks" post. Thank you for giving Brian (and everyone else) so many ideas to make running more interesting! I personally loved the comment and I'm sure he will appreciate it too if he can stay focused long enough to read the whole thing! ;)

Please email your mailing address to myrunningbuddies@hotmail.com, and we'll send you the prize!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

It's the first “A yummy little vice is nice…especially twice” giveaway!

I’ve thought seriously about making a T-shirt that says, I run(Front), to eat carbs! (back). I absolutely LOVE to reward myself for working out. But, if I’m being really honest, I like just about any excuse to indulge myself in a lip-smacking treat!
(This looks like a picture Lemonade Makin' Mama would have taken with her new camera.  Don't believe me, check out her button on our sidebar)
My personal list of favorites is a lengthy one, but at this time of year, my chart-topping confection is the Cadbury Crème egg! (just a moment, while I delicately bite through the majestic outer layer of milk chocolate, being careful to leave all exposed crème undisturbed). I’m obsessed with them. I don’t dream about eating them or anything weird like that, but I did name my first pet rabbit Cadbury (but that was years ago). I’ll admit, it does take me an absurd amount of time to eat one and I am very meticulous (annoying even, according to my husband) about the procedure by which I execute the process (I don’t think process is the word I meant to use)…. And, maybe I do keep buying them with the intent of “putting them in my kids’ Easter baskets,” and yes, an acute shortage of crème eggs and nothing else does warrant a trip to the grocery store (in my book)… So, I’ve hid a wrapper or two so as not to appear gluttonous… and I might be brushing chocolate out of my teeth all day long… but, I promise, I’m perfectly normal!
What’s your treat “weakness?” Share it with a comment and you’ll be entered to win a gift card to Emerald City Smoothie AND Starbucks (don’t even get me started on their Chai Tea Latte!). Become a follower, subscribe to post emails, or link our (new, adorable) button to your blog and be entered again (just be sure to let me know what you did in your comment, so I can keep track of how many times to enter your name). A winner will be drawn on Friday night, so be sure to check back.

Do you ever imagine a vat of your favorite egg treat at the finish line of a run or at the end of a long workout?  Ahem…um…yeah, I don’t do that, either.

Please note: The last post was not written by me. It was written by my hacker bro-in-law, who even after posting such non-sense, is still a running buddy of mine…but, he’s posting on very thin ice!  Encourage him with a comment and I’ll enter you again!

Running Sucks

First off I wanted to say that running sucks and is in no way fun. People that run all the time and say its fun are crazy, that being said I wish I was crazy too. Running to me is like work, without work there are many things you can not enjoy. Without running and staying in shape I realize that there are many things I won’t be able to enjoy also especially later on in life. I just wish that it wasn’t so darn boring.

I am a person with very little patience. I run everywhere to get to point A to point B. I cannot stand being bored. If I have to go outside to my car I will not walk I will run. It isn’t the act of running that is boring it’s the lengthy runs that you do nothing but run for no reason other than to get healthy. If my car died a few miles from my house you can bet I would run not walk because walking would just prolong the boring trip.

Starting today I am going to start my training for the 9 mile race I am going to run with my wife in about a month. I am going to track my progress and report if I can hopefully change my mind to feel that running isn’t so terrible. My wife loves to work out and I would love to workout with her. As it stands now when we have a run planned I dread it all day long making my day feel so long and horrible.

I have tried listing to music and that gets old, I have even tried listening to books on tape and that seems to help a lot.

Please let me know your tips and techniques that makes running fun for you.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Does Red Bull Really Give You Wings?

Energizing with friends before a bicycle tour of Paris

I admit it, I’m addicted...to Red Bull that is. It was not love at first taste but rather an acquired taste I have grown to love over the last 7 years and I’m not the only one. According to Jay R. Hoffman, PhD, energy drinks are one of the most popular supplements in the American adolescent and young adult population.

Not only does Red Bull give me energy and wake me up but I swear when I drink it I can’t help but be happy. My husband, who often calls it my ‘happy juice’, sometimes has it waiting for me in the mornings (I take that as a sign that I can be kinda grouchy upon awakening. lol). While there have been no conclusive studies it is believed that phenylethylamine is one ingredient in energy drinks that may enhance mood. Other vitamins found in energy drinks, like Red Bull, are Niacin and Vitamin B6 and B12.

So how does energy drinks affect athletic performance?

Energy drinks and health risks have made headlines in the early 2000’s. The herb ephedra alkaloid was linked to many heat related deaths of professional athletes (which was shown to elevate heart rate and blood pressure and unmask underlying cardiovascular problems.) In 2004, the FDA prohibited the sale of ephedra (I am unaware if ephedra is still sold in other parts of the world. My guess would be yes, so that is something to keep in mind for all you travelers out there!)

Current energy drinks in the U.S. do not contain this herb and recent studies have shown that these energy drinks are actually quite safe. Another factor I had to consider is caffeine’s effect on the body when exercising. I would often avoid energy drinks pre-race simply because I was under the assumption that the caffine may cause dehydration. Research has proven this to not be the case. When consumed in moderation, caffinated drinks will effect the body much like water.

Studies have also shown that energy drinks can delay fatigue, enhance alertness, focus, and reaction time and improve the quality of a resistance training workout but did not show any improvement on strength or power performance exercises (Hoffman).

The good news is it appears that energy drinks are not harmful when combined with exercise and can actually improve your workout. But like with any exercise regimen, use caution and listen to your body prior to adding any supplement to your workout, especially if you are new to working out, overweight, exercising in the heat or have pre-existing heat/heart/cardiovascular related issues. Consume in moderation if you choose to use an energy drink prior to a workout.

As for me, if I'm really in a workout funk, I may turn to Red Bull to give me wings but for now I will continue to drink my ‘happy juice’ in the AM or when I need that extra boost throughout the day. Afterall, I'm one of those creatures of habit Lisa was talking about in a previous Running Buddies post! ;)

Side Note: Check back on March 10th for another Running Buddies giveaway. Hey, its our blog and we can bribe our readers if we want to! :)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Baring My Sole

When I was a kid, I used to run barefoot all summer long around my uncles’ farms in Western North Dakota. The sharp, orange scoria rock that lines all the country roads and driveways in that area didn’t seem to bother me or my feet at all. Now, years later, I can barely run to the mailbox barefooted, over a smooth, rocky surface without wincing in pain. That explains the uneasiness I felt as I sat in the doctor’s office last week reading a Time Life article on the phenomenon of barefoot running. The author wrote about the hype in recent months, following the publication of Christopher McDougall's best seller, Born to Run. He also described his own personal experiment with barefoot running.

The idea of running with nothing on my feet during an actual workout is pretty scary to me, I have to confessbut I’d be lying if I said it didn’t intrigue me a little bit, too.

From what I’ve read, barefoot running appears to be more of a trend than a practice based on scientific research. Scan the internet or check your local library, and you’ll find dozens of people writing books, articles & opinion papers on the topic. Most promise that hitting the road shoeless is a more natural way to run (and who’s going to argue with that?).

Here are the biomechanics in a very small nut shell:
When you are not wearing shoes, you run differently. In general, barefoot runners tend to strike the ground on the ball of the foot (closer to the front of the foot, near the toes) and are in contact with the ground for shorter period of time during each stride. This is contrary to those in shoes, who are oftentimes heel-strikers with the back of their foot contacting the ground first, bringing their foot through a full range of motion before leaving the ground.

Advocates for barefoot running believe the change in gait and stride associated with not wearing shoes reduces chronic injury and may actually make you a faster, possibly more efficient, runner. Unfortunately, there isn’t much evidence, from a research or clinical standpoint, to support such claims.

If you are thinking about running barefoot, one internet source stresses the importance of starting out slowly, running or walking barefoot only for short distances at first. This will encourage a natural thickening of the soles of your feet. Once you have “toughened up” your feet, you can add longer distances and rougher Terrain to your workouts. This concept, alone, is enough to make me cringe and lace my shoes up even tighter! I’m a girl and I’ll admit, I’m self-conscience about almost every part of my body, but this is especially true when it comes to my feet! Sure, my self-image may be skewed and irrational at times, but the unchallenged (not even by my husband) truth is … I have ugly feet! So, I’m sure you can understand my hesitation to jump feet first into something that promises to make them even uglier! I’ve been hiding behind cute running shoes for years, so I think I’m going to need a little more evidence or will need to conduct my own personal experiment (on someone else, of course) before I am willing to retire the tennies. How about you?

Barefoot with my first "running buddy" and lil' sis, Caryn!
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Vibram Five Finger socks? shoes? hmmm....
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Totally unrelated: My newest running buddy, Ashley, is training overseas for her first marathon.  Currently in Istanbul, Turkey, she is running the Berlin, Germany 1/2 marathon next month.  Stop by her blog to cheer her on and be sure to tell her you're a "Running Buddy," too! http://ashleyrun.blogspot.com/

Sunday, February 21, 2010

W-H-I-T-E was I thinking...


...when I bought these shoes?

That was over 6 months ago and they are still white! They are still white because I almost never wear them. And, I almost never wear them because they are so white! You see the pattern. To justify my behavior, I blame the shoes for being too white to wear or the weather outside for being too yucky to wear white shoes in. But, after Dave’s last comment on the “Excuse Giveaway” post last week, I decided to examine myself a little. I immediately found myself asking ‘Why do I buy things and then “save” them, indefinitely?’ I mean, really, why am I so afraid to use my own stuff?  I’m not a pack-rat or anything like that (in fact, I hate clutter!), but I do hold onto “special” things for way too long…gift cards (until they expire), candles (waiting for the perfect occasion to light them), nice clothes (until they don’t fit me), soap (until the scent has faded) and now white running shoes (apparently, for when dirt no longer exists!). In a sense, my “saving” is actually becoming wasteful and probably even depriving me of joy. It’s a problem, and I’m guessing that with just a little bit of therapy, I would understand why I do this. But, since I’m too cheap, I mean too chicken, I mean BOTH, to seek therapy, I’ve decided to look the problem square in the face, confess it to the entire blog-world, and try to solve it myself. My solution… Baby Steps (would calling them Baby Running Steps be too corny?).

In order to grow or better ourselves as individuals, I know it’s important to get out of our own comfort zone every now and again. Part of my comfort zone involves, keeping things for ‘just the right time,’ but never actually using them. My plans to remedy this:

Baby step #1: Wear my new running shoes, rain or shine, starting yesterday (I ran 7 miles in them…it felt good, too!).

Baby step #2: Light the lilac candle that my mother-in-law gave me for an occasion too long ago to remember, and give something I’m “just hanging onto” to someone else this week.

Baby step #3: Let my husband use the restaurant gift card he received as a gift for Christmas at his discretion (or at least show him where I hid it).

The baby steps could go on and on. They're just simple, little actions that will hopefully help make me more aware of my behavior and help me to change a little (or at least stop annoying my family so much). Are there baby steps you could be taking, or small attainable goals you could set for yourself that would instigate a change that in turn would make you a better person? It could be running/exercise related or it might be completely random (like mine!).

Saint Augustine said, “If you want to attain to what you are not yet, then you must always be displeased by what you are. For where you are pleased with yourself you have remained. Keep adding, keep walking, keep advancing.”

So, what was I thinking when I bought these shoes? I think I was thinking, “I like white.” And you know what? I was right!

Totally unrelated:  Did you notice the new “cheer” gadget on the blog?  If you’re training for anything (race, hike, walk, swim, bike, etc…), comment and let me know so I can post it and we can all cheer for you. Sorry I’m so obnoxiously encouraging!  I'm baby-stepping, I promise.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

AND THE WINNER IS...



Steven, I almost took offense to your comment, because I feel like I smile a lot when I'm running. But, then I remembered, I only smile when I'm running with one of my RUNNING BUDDIES!

Thank you for all the comments. All the excuses were so much fun to read. They made me smile and nod a lot! Dave, I disqualified you from the giveaway for adding your last comment because it was directed at me, and that's just not called for...plus, you donated the gift card!

Steven, please email me your address at dkfjsuprak@hotmail.com, so I can send you the prize.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Good Excuse...FOR A GIVEAWAY!!

Maybe the excuse that “my dog ate my homework” worked in high school, but when it comes to missing a workout, I’m not so sure man’s best friend should be blamed.

Let’s be honest, we all make excuses (albeit, some more legitimate than others). It’s human nature. If we can’t, won’t, or don’t work out, we have to ease our guilt-ridden minds in some way and sometimes that can lead to some very interesting stretches of the imagination.

So, I’m curious. What’s your “go-to” excuse? Don’t worry, you won’t be judged. In fact, I’ll come clean right now with my own choice rationale for missing a workout. I simply tell myself that I’ll do twice as much tomorrow. There, problem solved and the mind-easing effects are pretty much immediate! Granted, I probably have an estimated 300 hours of workout time to make up for all the times I’ve used that doozey and not followed through, but that’s beside the point, I think.

Okay, I’m eagerly awaiting your comments, pen in hand! No, I’m not going to write them all down for future reference in the case of an exercise excuse emergency (even though it may have crossed my mind, for just a second or two). I’m going to write your names down and put them in a hat for a chance to win a $20 gift card to Foot Locker (but can also be used at Champs Sports or Foot Action). Who knows, it might come in handy if Fido ever really does get ahold of your shoes!


Become a follower of Running Buddies and/or subscribe to post emails and get entered a second and/or third time. The winner will be announced on the blog Wednesday night, so be sure to check back to see if you've won (and to peruse all the great excuses!).

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Value of Variety

Now most runners I know are, at their core, creatures of habit. You may not think that this applies to you until maybe you start remembering how you like to have particular foods before/during/after a run, or always wear the same outfit on race day, or tend toward a certain training route you could run in your sleep blindfolded.

Now, I'll be the first to admit that one of the reasons I have stuck with running as my primary (and often only) form of exercise was because I liked the routine. I enjoyed the steady progress made over time, the motivation that came from a relatively set training schedule, and the obligatory goal attached to it. I also have always enjoyed partaking in a chocolate milk reward at the end of each long run.

However, something happened over time. Monotony. The activity I had once loved over most others was starting to feel like an obligation rather than a privilege. How did this happen? I personally believe I allowed my focus to become too predictable and too narrow- other activities were forsaken because running took priority and the outcome of training was allowed to dictate the importance of the process before it.

The fix? V a r i e T y, STAT!

In fact, my goal for this year and beyond is to become more well-rounded... when it comes to activities, not body shape! Although I admit, there's already been a bit of that as well.

Cross-training is probably the most obvious answer and its value is well known. For instance, activities such as hiking, swimming or biking can be used to challenge different muscle groups and provide a lower-impact cardio benefit. Also, exercises that strengthen and stabilize your core like yoga and pilates have been shown to be beneficial in improving performance and preventing injury. Above all, cross-training provides a surefire remedy to the exercise doldrums and can allow you to expand your exercise social circle. Which brings us to...

Running buddies (of course)! One of the reasons we love to run with others is that they bring variety to multiple aspects of a run- the pace we may take on, the route we choose to run, the conversation topics that happen to come up. Talking about running with others also helps to be able to see the value of exercise from different perspectives, which in turn, helps us to not take it for granted. It is during these conversations that I am often inspired to evaluate what it is that keeps me running, which leads me to...

Goals! One of the best things I have done over the last several months was to focus my attention away from time goals and toward goals that were more fulfilling to me long-term. For example, helping others to train for races and seeking out fun and unique race experiences. One of my goals this year is to help organize or, at minimum, participate in a charity run. Not to mention my ultimate running goal (gulp): entering and completing a 50-mile ultra marathon- where the challenge is to conquer the course, not the clock.

Variety can come in simpler, smaller fixes as well, that can be just as important for motivation- a new playlist to listen to, a new running route, or a new pair of shoes.

If anyone else has ideas on how they have added variety to their running or workouts, please feel free to share. I'm always looking to keep it interesting and mix it up!

... except when it comes to the chocolate milk. That's perfect just the way it is.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Salmon, Brown Rice & Roasted Vegetables

Here is a very basic yet very tasty dinner with very little ingredients. Not a salmon lover? try it with Halibut.

Salmon, Brown Rice & Roasted Vegetables

4 Salmon Fillet (3.5 oz each)
Brown Rice (made according to package)
1 Zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 Yellow Squash, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 Small Onion, cut in large chunks
Olive oil
Salt
Pepper
Lemon juice (optional)
Parsley (optional)

1) Set oven to 350 degrees

2) On a cookie sheet (foil lined), sprinkle Salmon with salt, pepper, lemon juice & parsley

3) In a baking dish, place cut zucchini, yellow squash and onion - drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper (hint: you want the amount of each vege and onion to all be proportionate to each other)

4) Cook Salmon & Vegetables for about 30 mins or until done (Salmon will be flakey & veges will be soft) - stiring veges half way through cooking.

5) Cook Brown Rice according to package directions (I use a rice maker and it takes aprox. 20 mins) - after cooking, lightly sprinkle with salt & pepper.

Serving size: 4


MIX IT UP: Want a change in flavor for the Salmon? Substitute the salt with Truffle Salt! This adds a very unique and yummy flavor. Truffle Salt also works well on Halibut!

Truffles are wild mushrooms (not chocolate. sorry!) and can be very rare/hard to find, which adds to its hefty price tag. Truffle salt can be found in specialty health food stores such as Whole Foods and costs about $10 for a small 3.5 oz jar. However, a little goes a long way so the jar will last you a while! P.s. truffle salt can be used in many other recipes.


NUTRI-TIPS: Why am I eating that?

Salmon: contains heart healthy Omega-3 fatty acids, is high in protein, helps promote healthy skin, joints & eyes, and helps prevent diseases like heart disease and cancer. The American Heart Association recommends eating at least one serving (3.5 oz) of salmon at least 2 times a week.

Brown Rice: contains Fiber! Brown rice is simply white rice that has not been removed of all of its nutrients (think of white rice as simply 'bleached' brown rice).

Zucchini & Yellow Squash: high in vitamin C

Olive oil: helps in heart health (controlling cholesterol levels), contains Vitamin E and antioxidants. There are a few varieties of olive oil you can use (I belive the variety you want to use is based on the temperature of what you will be cooking). If you are just starting to use olive oil I would just stick with Extra Virgin Olive Oil (it has the most nutrients). I use extra virgin olive oil for almost all of my cooking.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

When did gray sweat pants go out of style?

I’ve never been accused of having much fashion sense. I’m not proud of this and I blame it, at least in part, on having grown up in a tiny Podunk town in Eastern Montana, where Kmart was the only department store within 50 miles(I’m not knocking Kmart or small towns, I’m just not entirely sure they did me much justice in the style department. In fact, it might be an interesting study to see if there is a correlation between the effects of a flashing blue light on the overall development of one’s ability to make a good fashion choice). Anyway, with that being said, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I also possess an all-encompassing lack of “running fashion sense.” Oh yes, "running fashion sense" is an actual thing (I was surprised, too!). People actually dress the part of “getting sweaty.” In fact, I believe this is a serious trend that is sweeping the nation, in case you hadn’t noticed all those cute runners on the road these days dressed to the “T”. As for me, I usually just throw on whatever clothes are handy and ‘comfortable’ and it is almost always a very last minute decision. My lack of style while exercising doesn’t really bother me and I know it is not a necessity to becoming a good runner; but, sometimes I wonder if it might be a good idea for me to leave my house for a run having put a little more thought into my overall attire. If I were to do this, maybe my husband would wave goodbye to me and shake his head out of pride and disbelief at the incredible, self-motivated woman he married, who, in his opinion, looks really good in yoga pants (that’s HIS hypothetical opinion, people! Not mine!). As of now, he usually shakes his head due to the fact that I don’t match, I’m wearing his sweat pants… a few sizes too baggy, and the Nike swoosh on my headband is upside down.

So, what do you think about “running fashion sense?” Are we buying into corporations that tell us that we need to look a certain way while working out? Or are the corporations actually trying to make us feel better about ourselves, so we’ll want to work out (in turn, spending $50 on running shorts)? I’m sort of guessing that the answer to these questions could quite possibly coincide with an individual’s own personal level of shame. And, I guess that’s fine, too.


The Italian Stallion wore Converse and gray sweats, why can't I?

BTW! Be sure to check the blog next Sunday. Running Buddies is having it's first giveaway!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Finding My Motivation

I'm sitting here trying to motivate myself to go run on the treadmill. So, I decided that maybe writing about it will be motivating...so far, no luck!

Out of all the places to run the treadmill is the worse. Its the one place where you can run really far yet literally go nowhere! How discouraging!

Maybe, I'll try 'tricking' myself by finding reasons why I need to run:

1) I'm running a 15k in 2 months and don't want to be sucking wind at mile 3 (and have my sister, husband and friends leaving me in the dust!)

2) See #1 - it really should be the only motivation I should need!...but since its not, proceed to #3

3) I've been meaning to rediscover my 'power song' anyway. You know, that song that is suppose to pump you up and get you moving no matter how tired you become mid-run (or in my case, pre-run)

4) I just ate a HUGE Lunner (lunch/dinner) and maybe running will not make me feel so FULL

5) Its my opportunity to catch up on MTV's Real World. Afterall, seeing other peoples drama always makes me appreciate my life more!

To be honest, it's #5 that is making me look forward to my run! LOL. On Demand, here I come!

Clearly I need some motivation help!! MTV won't always be there for me but My Running Buddies will be, right!? How do you find your Motivation?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Cool it. You're NOT Ryan Hall!

I like to run and I love races (fun runs, road races, foot races, whatever you want to call them), but I am not what I would consider a very serious runner and under most circumstances, I am not really competitive with anyone other than myself. Maybe that is why I am so annoyed by the "totally serious" runner. You may know this guy! He elbows his way in front of you to get a little closer to the start of a 5K, dressed from head to toe in hi-tech running garb, ornamented with all the latest gadgets and enough power gel to fuel a small child for a week. As soon as he wiggles himself comfortably into his starting spot, he begins his stretching routine (rubbing everyone around him the wrong way, literally). After displaying both his flexibility and the fact that his running shorts are six inches too small, he begins to tell everyone around him about all his past races and corresponding finish times (this, btw, is my biggest pet peeve, ever!). Next, he eats a banana, informing you of all the places he has stashed bananas throughout the race course, going on to explain the importance of potassium in the process of a muscle contraction. Yawn! And, if there is enough time, he will also list off all the songs he has recently downloaded to his ipod, ranking them in the order of his favorites. The "totally serious" runner is so annoying to me! More annoying than the other guy standing next to me wearing hi-top basketball shoes, torn-off blue jeans and a turquoise blazer. For some reason, this guy doesn't bother me at all, even though he is already sweating profusely and is constantly asking me, "how much time do we have?" "Totally serious" runner, please explain yourself! I want to understand you, maybe even like you someday. But, as of now, all I can think about is the pleasure and utter enjoyment I would feel if I were to trip you the second the gun fires.

.........................Champion runner, Ryan Hall........................