Back To Running

I took the week off from running, but I was still doing workouts at the gym which hurt tremendously by the way. My legs got better day by day. Yesterday was my first pain free day. Finally today I was ready to run and support an Anywhere 5k race in my new kicks, courtesy of my Corporate Challenge teammates!

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Hello yellow! My left hamstring started nagging me after a mile, so it’s getting the ice treatment as I type this. I ran 3.1 miles in 25:50. Probably not the fastest time to be submitted for the Zensah Zombie Anywhere 5k, but maybe I’ll be lucky enough to win some sweet gear.

Do I Want One?

Baby

Photo courtesy of Dad

Today, I visited some special friends of mine who had a baby just 6 days ago. I rarely, like once in a Mayan calendar, hold babies. Not my gig. Even during these friends’ entire pregnancy, I wasn’t sure if I’d hold theirs. But they are the type of friends I can ask “Is it weird?” and never did they look at me like I asked the most horrible question in the world. I, for the first time in my life, felt like I wanted to hold this baby! So I did. Twice!

Do I want one? The answer is still a resounding hell no. I’ve made the right decision for me. With the help of another no-baby-friend, we figured out an experience that may have led us to this! Reason… babysitting as a youth. I spent several years having babysitting gigs for families in my neighborhood where I grew up. 1-4 kids at a time. I played with the kids while I watched the parents go out. We believe those times planted a no-baby-seed deep inside of us instead of ever planting a really baby there. And this whole time I thought it was because I never wanted to play with dolls or play house as a kid. I did do those things. Because I was getting paid to do them. 

Kids can be cool as long as they aren’t mine!

Kitty Presents

I have a friend who hates cats. I routinely send her cards signed “From Your Kitty” for holidays and birthdays. I’m not sure she appreciates it but I find it hilarious! I upped the kitty hijinks recently and had a co-worker of hers hide this little guy at her desk.

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It’s a cat sculpture I bought at an art fair. I got pictures every few days of him hiding behind different things at her desk peaking out. She was so thrilled when she finally found it. Best kitty gift until… I was in Wal-mart and stumbled upon the most fantastic fleece blanket I had ever seen! 

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My normal kitty-hater was not going to be the recipient of this gift. I had bigger plans for it. This was going to Footfeathers. I instantly knew it would offer him super powers at all his future ultras. With some assistance from a friend, his surprise gift was hand delivered to him last night. I’ll let him tell you about it.

Pooped

A lovely fellow gym member sent me this today picture today.

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Yep, that’s me sleeping under the stairs at the gym this morning after Boot Camp. I have not taken a day off of working out since the Purdue half.  Just needed a little cat nap before going to work. I am not ashamed!

Purdue Half 2012

Today, my alarm went off at 5:15 am. Suck. After an hour of driving, Head and I arrived at Mackey Arena for packet pickup. Or I should say the no-swag-packet-pickup. This was the inaugural race.

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On the ride up we discussed what our goals were for the day. Head was training for the Monumental Marathon in a few weeks. I am and had not been training for anything. Head ran 13 miles a week prior. I ran a 5k 2 weeks ago. I had no idea what my day would bring me. In the past, I’d ran 2:20s, 2:10s, and a sub 2:00 once. We both told each other the congenial “we can run together or you can take off” speech. As you read how my day went, I hope the overwhelming tone of “Just as easily as you can talk yourself out of something, you can talk yourself into keeping going” comes across.

I decided to start in the 8 minute mile slot even though I hadn’t ran a half marathon since 2009. I had only seen the course map this morning. I guess I didn’t really even want to know what I was facing and just wanted to run. But I was aware how hilly the terrain was going to be, so I knew I needed to push early because it was going to be rough at the end (understatement). Off we went! We started on the East side of Ross-Ade Stadium. This mile was about your only good downhill of the day! The rest were very gradual. I had decided that I wanted to stay in the low 8 min mile range and did not want to see a 9 on my watch if at all possible.

The first 5 miles clicked off quickly in the time-elapsed sense. I was only paying attention to my watch at the mile lap marks so I could just run and keep a cadence. I was shocked to see low 8’s on the watch the whole time (except mile 2 which had a gnarly hill) even though I felt like I was running way towards the 9 mark. Head was kind enough to stay with me for the first half of the race, then I was on my own! It was about this time that my hips were getting fatigued and I started to calculate. My PR was a 1:54.51. I was still ahead of that somehow.

Mile 8 was the first time I clocked over a 9 minute mile at 9:01. I justified this against the really fast first mile and promised to not see 9 again. I wasn’t betting on a PR today. It was just a nagging unachievable goal running through my head. The no 9’s worked for the next 2 miles. Then the side stitch came. I was surprised it hadn’t come sooner. I’ve gotten them within running 2 miles before. I was not letting this damn thing stop me at this point. Slowing me down was the only option. It killed me. My only cure for these is to run while clutching it like I’m trying to strangle it. This left me with minimal arm pumping to get me up the last 2 uphill miles of the course. Suck.

I told myself at mile 12, I’d push to the end even to the brink of crawling. Before I hit mile 12, we were directed on to campus. As I played out the rest of course in my head, I started getting jazzed that just thru the Engineering Mall, up the dreaded Ross-Ade hill again, and then I’d be done. Then my excitement was crushed as I saw the runners in front of me take a right turn then head back on to Northwestern. Double suck. Forgot that we were going to finish in a different path then when we started. And Northwestern is a long ass grinding incline. My hips were burning. My stride was down to a pittance. Head got a pic of me using my reserves at the end.

With my (not) blazing speed, he only caught my knee in this shot.

My watch clocked me in a 1:55.12, 21 seconds off my PR from 2008. This picture shows exactly how I felt.

The Splits

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Our last picture as friends, but always my fellow PU alum!

Nah, I was glad Head asked me to do this. It was good for me. As he introduced me to a friend he said “I wanted someone to run with me, so I asked her. She’s always up for a challenge.” Yes, yes I am. I figure that’s my new reasoning behind not training. If I train, where’s the challenge?! 

In addition to the memories, we scored a kick ass medal and a sweet dry fit shirt!

GPS map showing our trek around our alma mater.

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And, I forgot I helped organize a small race tomorrow morning. Triple suck. Might as well get back out there to burn the burn off!

The Weizel

One of my high school crushes came through town this week, sans his 90s Kenny G hair. I think it’s been 10 years since he was here last (and I went to see him then too!). We got to the venue a few minutes before the show started so were seated towards the back…

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…but we were able to get up close and personal after the show!

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I thought it was a bit douchey to be drinking Voss water. I wonder if they got it while waiting in a TJ Maxx check out line?

Anyway, Pauly Shore is on a comedy tour with a political flair called Pauly-Tics. I wasn’t sure I’d like it as I usually don’t find politics funny, but his set was pretty good. I could have foregone the rapping skit. What I did find very funny was the guy before him. I have no clue what his name. He’s kinda photo bombing in the picture above. He had this outrageous “HUUAHHH” laugh that just made you laugh without anything else coming out of his mouth. Then when he started acting and sounding out lady part farts, I cried! I haven’t laughed that hard in a very long time.

Corporate Hardware

Picked up some hardware last night at the Corporate Challenge awards ceremony. In additional to our 1st place Industry finish and 2nd place Division 4 finish, I was surprised to be awarded the Golden Hanger award for our division too!

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We earned the Golden Hanger by receiving the most votes in the T-shirt contest! Our Olympic-style bright yellow shirts must have caught some eyes! Victory never tasted so sweet!

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But there was something even sweeter that occurred. My gracious teammates got together to get me a gift as a thank you for the work I put into organizing this event. How freakin’ awesome are they?! It really made me feel very special! It may or may not have brought a tear to my eye. Now, Mama’s going shopping for some new shoes! Running shoes, that is!

Stars Of Pink

Previously.

This dessert screams “Eat Me!”

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Strawberry mousse with fresh raspberries and graham cracker! De-lish! I was honored again to take part in Pink Ribbon Connection’s 2012 Fashion Show this past weekend, Stars Of Pink! My Momma couldn’t attend this year because she was already booked with her own event in Chicago! Like mother like daughter. Hilarious we both had events we wanted the other to attend and couldn’t! 

I was performing the duties of Model Chair again this year, but I decided to increase my commitment to the event and purchase a table. This allowed me to include those who are special to me in the event. I invited 9 lovely ladies from my circle to attend. A few had to leave before our photo op but here are some of my fabulous friends!

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I always shed tears at this event. A few of my friends did too! 3 of their Moms had been affected by breast cancer during their life, but are all healthy and doing well now! I may have 3 new models lined up for next year since our models are all breast cancer survivors or work in the breast cancer medical field. The survivors stories of forging on and living life to the fullest always inspires me. The piddly stuff I have to deal with in life is so insignificant to what these women and men have to face with breast cancer.

We had a new fashion sponsor this year, The Secret Ingredient. This group was amazing and generous! They fully hosted our preview party for the models and arranged a men’s and children’s shop to work with. The clothing looked so fantastic on the runway! They also set up a boutique at the event and is giving back 10% of the proceeds to PRC. Unbelievable!

At the end of the show, there is a pledge for donations where your pledge enters you into a raffle for some significant prizes like jewelry, fur, overnight stays at 5 star hotels… the list goes on. One of my girls won a Murano glass necklace and earrings valued at $750! She promises I can borrow it for inviting her to the event!

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