Sunday, March 27, 2011

Shamrock the Ville 5K

My SIL, Amanda, and I recently ran the Shamrock the Ville 5K in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.  The day was gorgeous and it was Amanda's first 5K so we were both pretty excited.  The run started at 1:00, since I am typically a morning runner I wasn't sure if I should attempt to eat lunch early or wait until after, I decided to eat a mini-sized Cliff bar (100 calorie) at 11:00.  In hindsight I should have eaten a bit more, live and learn. 

Amanda had picked up a few fun accessories for the race.

Caution white legs ahead - I usually tan in the spring to prevent blindingly white legs, but well I am getting to the age where I am more concerned about wrinkles than white legs.  So sorry tanning industry, no more lovely warm beds for me :(

The most wonderful Amanda

Although it was windy, we had a great run, we finished in 32 minutes, and felt great!  Lunch and margarita's at Chili's followed by pedicures and frozen yogurt to celebrate!

And I discovered I really really like dressing up to run!  Going to have to find more theme races!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Broccoli ~ No Cheese Required

I have been making broccoli this way for awhile and just haven't gotten around to sharing the recipe with you.  It is so easy, and so delicious!  Plus with the high prices of tropically grown vegetables right now broccoli being grown in colder climates has maintained it's reasonable price.  I about cried the other day paying for a green pepper.  Geez, global warming, really?

First wash and chop up your fresh broccoli.
Into a hot skillet that has been sprayed with a little olive oil.
Stir fry for a few minutes.
Add 2 tablespoons of water with a little salt to the skillet and quickly put a lid on.
Let steam for 4-7 minutes depending on how tender you want your broccoli.
Enjoy, no cheese needed!

Half Marathon Training Update ~  

Yesterday's training run was an 8 miler, the wind was insane, but I managed to finish thanks to my wonderful SIL Amanda joining me for the last half.  The wind was brutal, 16 mph, and even when I wasn't running into the wind fighting the cross wind messed with my form, which has left me with a sore knee today.  I have had one major and one minor knee surgery, my meniscus (cartilage) had a bucket handled tear when I was 19, since I was young the surgeon opted to try and sew everything back together with the hopes that the cartilage would heal.  Cartilage is odd stuff, some people have cartilage that heals, I do not.   Three years later when I returned for another surgery the surgeon found nothing had healed and the wholes from the needle he used to sew everything together was still in the cartilage, this time he shaved off the offending cartilage and hoped that would help but warned I would most likely have issues with my knee from time to time.  Amazingly with running I haven't had nearly the problems one would have thought, I can actually run most of the time completely pain free, but I do have issues when trying to increase my mileage too quickly.  Luckily next weekend doesn't call for a long run, it calls for a 5K I was able to find one in Bartlesville, Shamrock the Ville.  The best part?  It doesn't start until 1:00 and their is beer for everyone after!   As a birthday present for my SIL Amanda I signed her up too, I know totally best SIL in the world material here!  :)  I was able to twist my friend Sarah's arm also, so totally fun girl's day!!

What's your plans for the day?

I am planning on doing some laundry and icing the knee.  I am still taking care of a sick kiddo, so nothing too exciting.

Are you currently training for a race?  How is it going?  

I am training for the Oz Half Marathon on April 16, and well it's going LOL.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

SEK Meltdown

This week I learned about an exciting new program that is coming to our area, the SEK Meltdown.  This program is designed to help educate and empower people to take control of their health and live better, longer lives.  Sadly right now the SEK area is the unhealthiest in the entire state.  Check out this map and here is the breakdown of our county.

The program will loosely follow a Biggest Loser type program, with teams of  up to 10 working together and supporting each other to reach their goals, there will also be nutrition, cooking, and exercise classes available to participants.  Right now the plan is still in the planning stage, but it is scheduled to kick off on April 2, so stay tuned for further details.

I am planning on participating, so if anyone would like to help me put together a team, let me know.  (I even volunteered to teach one of the healthy cooking classes!)

In other news, half marathon training is going well, I am getting ready to head out on a 6 mile run here in a bit, just wishing the sun would peak out again.

Hope you are all having a wonderful weekend!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Groundhog 5K

In a word - CRAZY!

To put into preceptive my experiences before this race the largest race I had participated in to date had just over 300 people, this race sold out at 3500.  I really had no idea what to expect, but this wasn't it.  Wow.  Of course everyone being underground in a tunnel made the experience all the more surreal.  

As I was driving in I happened to look in my rearview mirror and who should be right behind me but one of my best running buddies Sarah.  Unfortunately we ended up getting seperated when I turned left and she went right.  I was told I needed to turn around and park down the road and walk up, oh joy, as it was freezing and windy, my personal favorite.  I spotted a gas station and decided to pull in and use their facilities, I thought it would be best to walk in the frigid air with an empty bladder.  As I was checking out, because I never use the facilities anywhere without purchasing something.  The girls were talking to some other runners about the parking issues the race was having, and I asked what they would charge to park in their lot, and she said, oh just park anywhere along the outside of the lot.  I was so happy I was almost in tears!  

Walking up I started to realize how dificult it was going to be to find my friends.  I found packet pick up and checked on changing races, from the 10K to 5K.  I was told they weren't allowing that this year, ugh.  I explained I had emailed the race director, so they let me talk to the powers that be and they allowed me.  

I hung out around the packet pick up area, knowing my friends would have to pick up theirs so it seemed the most likely place to find them, and eventually we all met up!  It was a Groundhog Day miracle!  

By the time we made it to the start line, we couldn't even see the start line, and were back in the 14 minute mile group.

But I was with my bestie, so all was right with the world.
Sorry about the vampire eyes, my computer died, so I am using the spare laptop and I don't have an edit program on this one.  

I was really worried about how I would do after 3 weeks of not running, and then only a couple 2 mile runs, but it felt great, I wasn't worried about my pace, just finishing.  I manged to find a steady pace and finished in 33:59 and 98th in my age group.  Not my fastest 5K, but I was so happy to be running I was grinning ear to ear the entire time!

Although it was nuts and crazy, I had a great time and would love to have the opportunity to run this race again!  Hopefully the 10K next time!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Crazy Kansas Weather

and I'm loving it.  50 degrees and sunny in January, I'll take it thankyouverymuch.  Now that the sun is staying out longer I was even able to take a walk after work, and some of my favorite people joined me.

It didn't take long for it to get chilly, but it was so nice to be able to do something besides come home and curl up on the couch.

Spring, please come soon!!  We miss you!!

What is the weather like where you are?

It's suppose to be nice all week, highs in possibly the 60 on Saturday, love love love it!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Girl Talk

You know it's Monday when you have a conversation in the car that goes a bit like this.

"I am sick" ~ Emma
"No you are not you are three" ~ Layla
"Mom, am I sick" ~ Emma
"I certainly hope not" ~ Me
"MOM I AM SICK" ~ Emma
"OK fine, you are sick" ~ Me
"No she is saying she is six" ~ Layla
"Oh, Emma you are three" ~ Me
"OK fine, for tonight you are six, Layla you want to be nine?" ~ Me
"Ya, I'm nine" ~ Layla
"HEY I'M NINE" ~ Emma
"OK, great, and I am going to be 25" ~ Me
"You go mom" ~ Emma

Crazy girls.

In unrelated news:

Instead of running my first 10K Sunday, I will be running the 5K race.  I managed to get another run under my belt today, and feel good, but I have to be realistic, I have only managed 2-2 mile runs, the 5K will probably be testing me and by attempting the 10K I am just opening myself up to a world of pain, and possible injury.  Instead of being disappointed that I am not running the 10K I am just excited that I will in fact get to run the 5K.  There have been several times in the last 3 weeks I didn't think I would get to run at all.  And it's spring there is no shortage of other races to run.

I booked our hotel today, and can I tell you how excited I am about the indoor pool?  That was basically my only have to have when looking an indoor pool, oh and not costing an arm and leg.  Emma has been going through swimming withdrawl, (she has actually 'swam' in the bathtub a couple times complete with swim suit) she is going to be so excited.

I better get some kiddos ready for bed.

What do you look for when booking a hotel?  

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Power of a Mantra

This morning tried the hip out and went for a run, it was the first run in 17 days, but who's counting?  I did a quick warm up and then headed outside with the goal of 2 miles, the morning was cold and gorgeous, I didn't realize how much I had missed running outside.

Within a couple blocks the running was feeling hard and I starting to feel defeated, thoughts like, I should just go home, I am not a real runner, this is too hard, I should cancel my plans to run next weekend at the TLC groundhog underground run in Kansas City.  I was ready to turn around and head home when I remembered my mantra, I have never used it before while running, but after reading this article at Runner's World I had decided I needed one, I am the Queen of negative thinking when my runs get hard.  Instead of stopping I kept running and repeating, "Be Strong, Feel Brave" and guess what?  It worked, I quick focusing on what was hard, and how running made me feel strong and powerful and I knocked out those 2 miles without any problem.

If I hadn't repeated those words and focused myself I would have missed this.

Do you use a mantra or phrase for when the running gets hard?  What is it?  What does it mean to you?

I chose mine because for me running is about being strong, and stepping outside my comfort zone.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Want to lose your chocolate craving?

Check out what I found when I went to open my Reece's Peanut butter cup package. . .

Tarry black substance in my peanut butter cup?  No thanks, think I'll pass.  

I really didn't need that Reece's anyway, and it might be awhile before I have another.  

On the agenda for this weekend ~ relaxing, reading, basketball, and possibly a test run on the hip, a girl can dream!

What are you up to this weekend?

Have you ever had a complete product fail?  What was it?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Yummy Tortellini Soup

This week the husband is working the high school basketball tournament keeping the book, it's just me and the children each night for dinner.  Carl says they have an amazing hospitality room for all the workers, so don't worry he isn't going to starve! 

Anyway, as luck would have it, my kids are usually fairly brave eaters, they don't shriek away in horrible if there isn't meat on the table, and anything that includes pasta gets two BIG thumbs up.  Combined with the fact I had to take Colten for a consult with a dental surgeon (he has an extra tooth, I am blaming my husbands side of the family) and Emma had her dance class last night, I needed something fast, easy, and most importantly yummy on the table stat. 

I started with this recipe, but as it was cooking I could tell it could be better, plus I just thought it needed more sustenance, so I added some beans, and I have to say it turned out awesome, and full of protein.  Which is good since I will be eating this for days on end, it made a TON!

Yummy Tortellini Soup
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion
1 clove garlic
1 bag spinach (I made the mistake of using the frozen that was called for, and while it didn't bother me, my kids did not appreciate the fact that there was really no way to eat around the spinach, so next time I will stick with fresh whole leaf spinach.)

2 large containers chicken broth (or leftover homemade chicken broth)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup spaghetti sauce
1 can kidney beans
1 can white beans
2 tsp basil
2 tsp oregano
salt and pepper
4 oz cooked tortellini

In your pan heat olive oil, then saute onion until tender, add garlic and spinach saute until spinach wilts.  Add chicken stock, tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, beans, basil, oregano, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes. 

Enjoy with some crusty bread sticks, if you are into that kind of thing.

Any weird extra teeth or toes in your family tree? 

As much as Colten LOVES candy I really wish he could keep it for future use, he might need it someday!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

It's a MAJOR award!!

Jess over at Running Between the Lines gave me an award.  I am pretty excited, I just don't get many awards!

 Along with this award comes some responsibilities:

1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award 10 other bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award!

Seven things about myself:
1.  I love all things The Christmas Story.  Seriously, it's a family thing, I bought my mom a leg lamp for Christmas and she promptly put it in the front window.
2.  I worked as a hair stylist for 6 years.
3.  Cooking is my therapy.  Often my husband suggests we should order out after a busy day, but I need to cook to unwind. 
4.  I have a serious peanut butter addiction.
5.  I let my children watch Sponge Bob, and have caught my husband home alone watching it. 
6.  I would like to become a Yoga instructor, and am currently looking into the process.
7.  Brandon and Amanda (my brother and his wife) are opening a new gym in Fredonia.  very. excited.  I think Brandon might have gotten tired of hearing Amanda and I whine about the lack of gym in town.  I can't wait until I care share some pictures with you, it's going to be amazing! 

Awarding 10 bloggers. 

Here is the hard part, I stalk all these blogs, like it's my job.  But I don't usually comment a lot, so they will have no idea who I am, but I suppose that is part of the point of this, to get out of your comfort zone and make new friends!  And introduce your friends to other blogs, seriously if you do nothing else, check out some of these blogs, these are some amazing women who have accomplished so much! 

1.  The Hungry Runner Girl
2.  sweat once a day
3.  Racing with Babes
4.  Morning Runner
5.  Dietitian on the Run
6.  RunToTheFinish
7.  Why Deprive?
8.  Fit Chick in the City
9.  Iowa Girl Eats
10.  Healthy Tipping Point

Monday, January 17, 2011

Where I am today, and where I am going

The lung issues have cleared up, but in the course of my antibiotic treatment I discovered I have severe side effects due to Avelox.  I am usually one to read my side effects of all medicines I am taking, but I will admit here, it was an antibiotic, the Dr told me to take it with food and it was very powerful, so I figured I knew the drill - drink lots of water, take with food, and try to eat as much yogurt as possible (I think it helps with some of those unpleasant side effects most antibiotics have, you know yeast infections and diarrhea.)  And that was that, the first two days I did nothing but sleep.  Seriously, it was crazy. Sunday I woke up and was no longer sleepy unfortunately I still wasn't when  I went to bed that night - odd.  After not sleeping very well for several days I started to wonder if it was possible an antibiotic could cause sleeping issues, I was also starting to joint and muscle soreness, which seemed odd since I was feeling better, then I came across the information the pharmacy sent home. 

The first things I read made my head spin, the side effect you should be most aware of is the possibility of tendon rupture.  Seriously.  Tendon.  Rupture.  WTH? 

I read on, my sleeplessness was also a side effect along with countless other items.  Geez, these really aren't your typical Z-Pac.  But wanting to make sure I was my lungs fully recovered I took that day's dose and went along my merry way, praying sleep would eventually find me.  The next day I could barely get out of bed, it felt like someone had beaten me with a bat at all my joint locations, although I did sleep better, go figure.   After calls to both my pharmacist and Dr they agreed, no more Avelox for me - EVER. 

So where does that leave me?  It's been 6 full days since I have taken Avelox and I am still experiencing some pain in my left hip.  Honestly though as bad as this sounds it could be worse, some people continue to experience the pain for months after stopping the Avelox in all of their joints, the fact that my pain is now only in my hip gives me hope that I will soon be pain free. 

I haven't been able to do any exercises since last week Wednesday, as I am not to exercise or do anything strenuous until all my joints are pain free, due to the possibility of tendon rupture.  I am registered to run the Ground Hog 10K in Kansas City on the 30th, my first 10K, and I don't think a 10K will be possible for me, I hadn't put in enough long runs to feel comfortable attempting it.  I was also to begin training for my first half marathon, the Oz, 2 weeks ago.  Life has thrown me a curve ball, and I know it's up to me to decide how to deal with it.

I am choosing to deal with it as positive as possible.  My wonderful friend and running buddy, Sarah, found that I can in fact drop from the 10K to the 5K at the Ground Hog, so hopefully I will be up to a 5K by the 30th, I have put in enough running to know I can finish a 5K if my hip is OK. 

The half marathon is harder, is it possible to train properly in this amount of time, maybe, but I just don't know, it all depends upon how much longer I am unable to run.  One thing I know for certain, if I start to fast or don't listen to my body it's going to take a LOT longer.  So I will be patient and hope for the best, and luckily the Oz has a 5K I could always do and then pick a different half for my debut.  It's not the end of the world, just a stepping stone along the way! 

Do you have big training plans this spring?  How do you deal with injury or set-backs along the way?

PS-I have a yummy new soup recipe headed your way soon. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Goals for the week

It's amazing how quickly your goals can change.  At the beginning of the week I started my half marathon training, the goal for the weekend being a nice 6 miles run.

Got through Monday and Wednesday's runs, but on Wednesday I just felt off, I was fighting a cold and struggled through the run, but made it.  I took Thursday off and by Friday I knew I wasn't going to be able to make it to work, let alone run.  I finally broke down and made an appointment with the Dr.  Verdict, lung congestion especially on the right side, no wonder my back has been aching.  $16 a pill meds, and two full days of sleeping seem to be helping, but I can tell I am still a ways from normal.

So here we are on Sunday, my goal for the day being just taking one nap, and hopefully being able to make it to work tomorrow, or at least get off the couch.  And as far as the rest of the week, I hope to be up and running again by the weekend, until then?  Just trying to get back to 100%.  

How do you deal with problems that keep you from reaching your goals?