Category: Uncategorized

*jenny It’s already November?

How is it November? How is that possible? Checks calendar. Yep. It’s still November. Which means I’m approximately 11 maybe 12 weeks out from this marathon that’s supposed to be a big PR for me? Hah. Really though, I’m working my way back onto the bandwagon.

I’m going to do the thing where I use giphys to insert colorful moving pictures of screen caps from one of my favorite shows, Supernatural, to help me write this blog post today. Mostly I just want to look at Jensen Ackles, because it’s all Dean all the time for me.

Training last week:

15.6 miles.

The bad news? 0= the number of those miles that included speed work. 10 of those miles were a long run. The good news is that those 10 miles were originally going to be 8 but I felt strong around mile 6 and decided to extend my route to give myself the option of completing 10 miles.

I’ve been going through some kind of weirdness with running in the past 4 weeks. I don’t want to do it and then I do… I complete my highest mileage week ever and then feel exhausted the next week and don’t want to run at all. I wasn’t as consistent over the summer with MAF as CBK was and it has definitely started to show. I’m just less consistent period. I think my best course of action to ready myself for this marathon is to cut back on speedwork, maybe cut back a little bit of mileage and go from there. Maybe the perfect combination for a crash and burn?

Maybe the perfect combination to get a PR? Mostly it sounds like the perfect recipe to finish the race with my dignity intact which is my ultimate goal. I would like to finish strong, possibly running/jogging the entire thing, and not feel so utterly devastated physically at the end. My biggest complaint with the BG26.2 last year was the hills and the utter physical decimation it left me in. I’m hoping I’m a stronger athlete than that this year. I’m hoping.

Shrug.

 

Anyway. In an effort to keep myself out of the personal black hole of misery that is autumn every year for me I’ve been working on adding some additional cross training and light therapy to my routine. Here’s me with my fancy grow bulb in my fancy desk lamp.

grow bulbs

I also went to a spin class this morning. I spent the majority of the class BEC-ing this lady next to me for hogging one of only two oscillating fans in the entire room for herself… the turd actually put it right in front of her bike and locked it so that it would only blow on her. Then I realized she is a neighbor of mine. So, lucky me. Don’t worry– this gym membership will go the way of the planet fitness membership that I signed up for and so ardently claimed I would use last winter (spoilers: I used it ONE time.)

Things I’m excited about, CBK and I are trying a Barre class on Thursday and I’m pretty pumped. I hope it’s fun. I hope I don’t fall over. I hope I don’t trip one of the other attendees? Let’s just hope for the best possible outcome which will be that I make it through the entire class without making a fool of myself.

We had family pictures taken a couple of weeks ago and of all the pictures we’ve ever taken, including our wedding pictures, this might be my favorite. I’ll do a post of my wedding pictures sometime. They’re pretty funny.

I mean, we’re both smiling. There’s that gravel road behind us. It looks like we’re on a farm (we’re really in a small field beside our church’s parking lot). Tony doesn’t have a hat on and you can actually see his face. What more could I ask for?

SONY DSC

Also– this cheeseball, who is the song in my heart and the smile on my face. Every day all day.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Next time I’ll show off pictures of her halloween costume. It was e.p.i.c.

Well hello there:

Can I save the reasons why I’ve been MIA for the bottom of this post? Okay, good. 🙂

Yesterday, at work, my cubicle neighbor to my back asked if I liked country music. This is always a loaded question for me because I grew up loving country music. I say, yes, I love country music. The guy tells me all about a new song that Dierks Bentley sings on in collaboration with another artist whose name I can’t remember. My cubicle neighbor to my left begins to extol the virtues of a song that he loves, also by Dierks Bentley, called “Drunk on a plane”. I’ve never heard this song but you can probably guess that a song called Drunk. On. A. Plane. Isn’t a riveting and musically challenging concerto. Dear God, Nashville. I’m so ashamed of you? What is this shit? Johnny Cash did not suffer so and write such beautiful songs for you to churn out the likes of Dierks Bentley. Give me a break. Where are the Rebas? The Dollys? Where are the George Jones? You know where I think this bull shit originated? It was Toby Keith. I’m looking at you Toby, and I’m giving you the double birds. You can keep that Luke Bryan dude bro too. Ugh. It sure is a chore to look at them too.

Ahem

Race report time!

My last run, other than today, was a race. I’ll try to remember the details to the best of my knowledge below.

10/17/2015 The Medical Center 10k Classic

The Race: This is Bowling Green’s premier road race event. It’s in it’s 36th running and hosts both a 10k and 5k option. I’m not 100% certain how many finishers they typically have but as I neared the end I heard the emcee saying that they’d see north of 800 runners come across the finish line. For a town the size of Bowling Green it’s a big event. It’s a closed road course that runs through our beautiful downtown square and Western Kentucky University’s campus. This race holds a very special place in my heart. My dad worked for the race’s title sponsor, The Medical Center. He was in the administration for the hospital and if I wasn’t at home playing or at school playing you could typically find me harassing his secretary or running through the hallways terrorizing the other administrators of this hospital. I kid. They all loved me, maybe. ?? I specifically remember seeing lots of the parents of my friends finishing this race and thinking, how cool it must be to be a runner. I wish I could do that. I WILL do that. So in a way, the med center 10k was one of my first running motivators. I ran it for the first time in the fall after I had Lydia and I definitely felt myself get choked up when we ran by the hospital. It’s outdated and it’s ugly but it holds a lot of special memories for me of fun times I had with my dad when he probably should have been working. HAH. If I’m healthy enough, and able I’ll run it every single year going forward. It’s my thing. I also love the 10k distance and there just aren’t a lot of options for it around here. Just long enough to be a challenge but short enough that you can really push it if you want to. I’m sorry, I’m getting wordy. Moving on.

Race Swag: A long sleeved, cotton tshirt. It’s had the same design, just in different colors the past 3 years. I do love a good cotton long sleeved tshirt though. They’re hard to come by and I live in them lounging around the house in the winter.

Race morning: I can’t remember what time I set the alarm for for this one but the race started at 8am. I think I got up at 6am. I chugged a cup of coffee and ate a gluten free waffle with some strawberry jelly on it. I left my house about 45 minutes early to meet Courtney at her house. We used the 2 miles between her house and the starting line as our warmup jog. I wore a lululemon long sleeved swiftly, 9″ lululemon what the sport shorts and my brooks pureflow 4s. The weather was chilly to start, low 40’s to high 30’s. Courtney let me borrow a hoodie and at the end of our warmup I was definitely fine. I nailed it with my outfit choice.

The Race: At 7:30am we bid the 5k runners bon voyage, and at 7:55 the wheelchair racers started. Courtney and I used the porta potties and were able to line up towards the middle of the 10k pack with no problems. I love the organization of this race, they do a really good job with start times and keeping things rolling. At 8am the gun went off and we started. This is a chip timed race and I remember it only took me a minute to cross the starting mat. I did what I always do, which is start too fast and bob and weave and waste energy. Will I ever learn? Let’s hope so. I always get a shot of anxiety and adrenaline when a race starts. It takes me a few minutes to settle in and calm myself down. This course is tough, WKU is consistently voted one of America’s most beautiful college campuses. With the beautiful scenery and views come Hills. Lots of hills. Our sports teams are called the Hilltoppers, I’m not even kidding…

the hill

Told you it’s beautiful though (side note, I took exactly none of these pictures):

campus 4

campus 3

campus

 

the first 2 miles went by in a blur of screaming quads and glutes. By miles 3 and 4 I was coughing (I’d been dealing with a nasty upper respiratory infection) and by mile 5 I hit a little wall at the top of another hill climb. I gave myself permission to stop and walk for 1 minute, but 1 minute turned into 5ish and I definitely lost some time. I tried to pick things back up for the downhills going into mile 6 and finish strong. That was my mantra at the end, finish strong finish strong finish strong. It carried me across the finish line to a course PR of 54:30. About a 15 second PR. Which is laughable. But I’ll take it.

The Finish: I really like the finish of this race– you end inside the beautifully remodeled WKU football stadium. They always do a big party and give away a $5,000 prize for a drawing out of finisher names. I lost Courtney to some hip pain around mile 3 so I didn’t stick around for the prize drawing. The only thing they don’t have is beer. Jerks. I jogged back to the starting line where Courtney texted and told me to meet her and we limped home. I drove back to my home with a massive headache and dealt with a little nauseated feeling from swallowing so much snot (pretty, I know) while running.

In conclusion I love the med center 10k– I’d love to actually give it its own training cycle and see what I could do on the course. It’s been a solid race for me the past 3 years and the organization and event planning always impresses me.

Here are the splits from my Garmin. Told you I bit it in the 5th mile.

splits 10kclassic

Here are the official results from the race.

Official race results

While on the course I ate 1 gu roctane gel. I also ate a gel at the start of the race. I’ve been struggling with lightheadedness and headaches and my nutrition just isn’t always on point, hellloooo oreos! So.

Anyway. I’ve been a bad blogger and an even worse runner. I’m currently supposed to be training for the Louisiana marathon that’s taking place in January. I think September kind of dropped a big old turd bomb all over my family and I’ve been feeling the effects of it. Things are starting to look up and work themselves out though. That’s life right? Things just don’t always happen the way you expect them to and God knows I’m not perfect. I’m not even a saint. 😉 Lots of times I’m lazy. I’m just plain lazy. I’ve been filling my nights with lots of this:

wine

But today on my run I saw lots of this:

Trees

 

and felt just a little bit better, #outsideisfree. So here’s to the comeback. 🙂 I feel like I’m always coming back. Oh well.

I’ll leave you with this, I missed Back to the Future day in interwebs land. But rest assured, we celebrated it. 🙂 Also you could lose a few hours of your life just typing one word jokes into this: the IBM Watson Developer Insights Personality Analyzer. It had my number just from the words:  fart tits, poots a lot. It’s as cool as it sounds. Trust me.

lydia hoverboard

 

*jenny weekly training journal 5.4-5.10.15

 

Monday 5.4.15:

Planned Run: 4 miles at MAF of 147
Weather including humidity: 75* with 63% humidity
Food: I ate half a bagel with cocoa barney almond butter and a oikos triple zero strawberry yogurt cup.
Shoes: blue brooks pureflow 3s. These still have a little life in them.
Entertainment: Old Easy playlist. Spent 5 solid minutes rocking out to Dragonforce’s through the fire and flames. Good times.
Actual Run:

Miles
How did it feel: Slow and hot. I took at least 10 walk breaks. Garmin connect says my elevation change for the entire run was 13 meters. Every single little incline I had to stop and walk. I think it has a lot to do with heat and humidity. It’s already getting hot in Kentucky and sometimes I have to do a lot on my lunch breaks. I’m going to try to do a morning run this week and I’m interested in seeing what a cooler temp will yield. Also– that cardiac drift. It’s a bitch!
Are you bored yet: I am not bored and I’m actually loving it and I’m only 3 runs in but… I’m really enjoying just enjoying myself!

Tuesday 5/5/15

*First off, big shout out here to T– this was our anniversary! 8 years in. God knows we’ve seen some crazy changes in just the last 2! I feel confident that we will make it through the next 8 and beyond just fine. 🙂 Sure we want to kill each other some days. Don’t all couples? 🙂 For my anniversary I got an AWESOME set of jaybird bluetooth earbuds. I’ve been hem hawing around about buying them forever and the husband treated me. They are freaking incredible. So worth it. Thanks honey! Love you! 🙂

Planned Run: 5 miles at MAF
Weather including humidity: 11 am *82 with 38% humidity
Food: Oikos triple zero strawberry and a bagel thin with cocoa almond butter
Shoes: blue pureflows
Entertainment: The Another Mother Runner podcast, the episode with special guest Summer Sanders. Summer, you are my new spirit animal. I thoroughly enjoyed this episode and may actually listen to it again. I liked it that much.
Actual Run:  So in true Jenny fashion, once again, I messed up. I created a workout on garminconnect and uploaded it to my watch… except I only created 1 big 5 mile interval. So I have no idea what my heart rates or average paces per mile were. I know they were slow. I had to take at least 6 walk breaks throughout this one. I think I’ve finally got the garmin thing figured out now though… fingers crossed. On a less important note… shorts tan 2015 is coming along nicely. Along with shoe and sock tan lines on my feet.
How did it feel: HOT. HAWT.
Are you bored yet: Nope. Not at all.

Wednesday 5/6/15:

Planned Run: 4 miles at MAF
Weather including humidity: 11 am *80 sunny and 37% humidity
Food: Oikos strawberry triple zero and a nature’s own bagel thin with barney cocoa almond butter
Shoes: Blue pureflow 3s. I wish I’d kept an accurate count on the mileage on these shoes. I know they’re still good but it would be nice to know how long for. LOL 🙂
Entertainment: Trail runner nation podcast– this one was a first for me. I need to get into it a little and figure out who these guys are.
Actual Run:

miles 2
How did it feel: I feel like this is the most accurate portrayal of cardiac drift I’ve gotten so far. I’ve been counting my walk breaks up small inclines (how embarrassing) and on this day I only took 2. Which is awesome considering it was hotter than it has been. But it was also less humid. I also think these paces are the most accurate I’ve gotten so far.
Are you bored yet: I am not bored at all. It’s only week 1 but I am loving this. I’m listening to old playlists and new podcasts. it’s not a chore to go out and do my run because I know it’s going to be at a super easy pace. Talk to me again after MAF test #2 I guess. 🙂

Thursday: Iron Strength workout from Runner’s World. Info can be found here.

Friday:

Planned Run: 4 MAF
Weather including humidity: *83/ 38% humidity
Food: Bagel thin with cocoa coconut almond butter and oikos triple zero berry yogurt
Shoes: blue pureflow 3s
Entertainment: TFC playlist
Actual Run:

miles3
How did it feel: Hot and slow. 🙂
Are you bored yet: Still loving it. 🙂

Saturday:

Planned Run: 10 MAF
Weather including humidity: *66/ 82% humidity
Food: I did some quick googling while I was drinking my cup of coffee to try to decide if I should eat or not? This is all a learning experience for me. The paces I’m running at feel fine and the entire point of MAF is to try to teach your body to burn fat and not sugar… so I took 3 gus with me, just in case, and skipped breakfast. Though I DID have a big dinner at Gondolier (italian) the night before. 🙂
Shoes: blue pureflows. Just about dead.
Entertainment: Another Mother Runner podcast, the no limits challenge recap episode. I really enjoyed this one.
Actual Run:

miles4
How did it feel: This felt fabulous. OH the difference a 20 degree temperature change can make. The last 2 miles of this my HRM died a good death and I didn’t get any accurate HR data. I just tried to keep my pace consistent with what it had been during the previous miles. I like that the data BEFORE the HRM went dead is nice and consistent in the 11’s. It just goes to show what temperature does to our bodies.
Are you bored yet: STILL not bored. 🙂

Total weekly miles: 27

In non running news my boogie bear is sick once again. A nasty viral infection that we will have to retest for in a month. 🙁 Spare a good thought, prayer or some positive vibes? Here’s a picture from Mother’s Day (which deserves it’s very own post this week :).

Fabulous

 

Also my most favorite coffee mug ever…

Mug

mug2

mug3

*Jenny On Being a Badass Working Mother Runner…

*Disclaimer. Opinions are like assholes, right? 99.9% of everything that comes out of my mouth is to be taken in a joking, sarcastic manner. The other .01% is facetious and possibly even satirical. If I offend you with one of my opinions I am genuinely sorry. I have a horrible case of foot-in-mouth-itis and lots of strong views and that’s just a recipe for disaster sometimes. I hope you can take the following with the understanding of the place it’s coming from. My own personal opinions and experiences. Again, if I offend or hurt feelings I am sorry and know that that is not my intent*

Before I begin let me define some terms for you.

Mom guilt: A wicked sense that every thing you’ve ever done for your child, nay, every thing you did before even thinking of having children is/was wrong. Also add, feeling as if everything you may do in the future will also be wrong and *not enough*. Led to and collaborated on the creation of such important tools as *Pinterest* and *Gender Reveal Parties*.

Working Mother: Personally, I believe, the hardest job in the world. Add to this a burning desire to torture yourself for hours upon hours of training for endurance events and you have… a badass working mother runner.

Look. I know it can’t always be roses. Let me just leave this right here.

This post solidified itself in my mind while I was doing my very first official MAF summer cycle 4 miler during Friday’s lunch break. I believe it’s been cooking since I listened to a specific episode of the Another Mother Runner podcast during a long run in which Kristin Armstrong was the key guest. I love Kristen Armstrong. She can get a little too spiritualist/hippie dippy for my liking but most of what she writes I can relate to.

A ring finger and a uterus do not a calling make.– Kristin Armstrong. Kristin. My girl. You get it.

But more specifically I’d like to talk about this. I’d like to talk about my story. I would like to talk about how I’m a mom, but that I’m also still a Jenny. I have a unique perspective in that I’ve been a stay at home running mom and now have been a working running mom. I’m also a feminist. Unique perspective right here!

5115

The past week and the 2 weekends before that have been soul crushingly busy. I ran the derby half which required some travel and then immediately had to leave home for a week long work trip in Texas. In the midst of all of that my tiny person turned 2 years old, which we celebrated with a lovely family cookout. I didn’t get the chance to dedicate as much time and effort into L’s second birthday as I would have liked. I try not to let mom-guilt rule me. Sometimes it does manage to creep up behind me and wag it’s finger accusingly in my face. Add to all of this that I got home around 10pm on Thursday night from the aforementioned work trip and at 1:45am L rolled over, (she still sleeps with my husband and I) patted my face and said, “hi mommy”, how could I possibly be mad when she then proceeded to stay awake until 5am. I think she was excited to see me and no matter how tired I was I relished the opportunity to cuddle with her and watch Frozen.

So forgive me if my heart is a little tender right now.

I took the year immediately following L’s birth off from work. After my 4 months (some big companies get it right and YAY for the state of Tennessee, in which I do not live but work) of maternity leave were up I spent a month tearfully commuting to Nashville in the mornings and then sobbing all of the way back home each evening. My husband and I were in a very nice financial position which enabled me to turn in my 2 weeks notice and dive headfirst into the role of stay at home mom. This was mid-summer 2013. As Summer 2014 was coming to a close I began feeling Itchy with a capital i. After a year my husband and I were both growing weary of watching every penny and I was itchy to have discretionary income again. I was itchy to feel fulfilled in a professional environment. I was itchy to have an entire blissful hour dedicated to just eating lunch. I was itchy to take a poop by myself again. I mean. It’s the small things amiright or amiright?

So anywho. Back to work I went. I knew I made the right decision when I didn’t break down sobbing hysterically on day 1.

Being a working mom brings it’s own inherent challenges. Not just for those of us who dream of someday feeling comfortable calling ourselves athletes (I will never be comfortable calling myself an athlete– as I shove this entire sleeve of chips ahoy down my gullet). Being a working mom is just so hard, man. Just this past week I have continually berated myself for forgetting a charitable donation for a fundraiser L’s school was having. Although to be fair, hey preschool– fundraisers… really? IN PRESCHOOL? I love your passion guys, really I do. But shew, I guess I thought I had a few years until it was time to start selling girl scout cookies. My bad.

You have the guys on the right side of the aisle and people like Fucking Doctor Laura Schlessinger spewing such gems as; “if you let daycare raise your children you should have just had an abortion” and my personal favorite, “any woman who wants to work after having a child should have just been born sterile.” These aren’t direct quotes. But they’re close enough to the vitriol I listened to her drop on her wildly popular Sirius XM show. I find it funny that she directs all of this HATE to the working mothers and NONE of it towards the working fathers, but I digress and this is already getting LENGTHY.

You also have the people who will look at you and say, “Oh, I could never be a stay at home mom, you just couldn’t handle it, huh?” No. I could handle it. In fact I handled it all over town and back again for an entire year you jerk. I was THE best stay at home mom. But, and I’ll pull this back to running in a second folks because I do remember who my target audience is, it all comes back to Kristin Armstrong’s quote above. I want to teach L about identity so I make sure to have one outside of her. I’m not saying that a stay at home mom can’t have an identity aside from her children, I am saying that I failed miserably at it.

During my golden year of not being in the workforce I looked at running as my job. I am a middle of the pack runner. I make the F, and let’s be honest, G level sub elites look so much better. Who would you have to beat if my Reese’s fueled rear end wasn’t out there hoofing it along behind you? Nobody. Then you’d be me! Scary thought, huh? I did multiple speedwork sessions per week. I ran long. I got fast-for-me-fast. I ran every single one of my PRs only falling from such glorious heights when I ran myself into an alleged femoral neck stress reaction. I was poised to run well under 2 hours at the 2014 Derby half marathon and because of that injury couldn’t. The point of all of this is that for all of the hours we dedicate to running those hours still fall significantly short of the amount of hours we would put in at an 8-5 job.

Now I work and I’m still doing all of the things I did as a stay at home mom. Plus a 9 hour work day. On Thursday night Lydia slept for 3 hours. On Friday I needed to run. I couldn’t sleep in. I managed to run 4 miles when I really wanted to do 5 or 6. I originally thought this post was going to be tips and tricks to get your run in at any given second. But I can’t write that post because I haven’t figured that out yet. You give me a training plan and one thing is certain, I will probably execute that training plan to about 65% accuracy right now. That’s what this post is about. The fact that 65%, hell, even 40% execution– when you’re a mom and a working mom, is OKAY. It’s a victory.

Because so many running mother bloggers I read are so wonderful and so on point but lots of them are stay at home moms. Lots of them don’t have the unique perspective some of us have. I want to read more stories about successful female athletic goal setters who have children AND day jobs. I need to hear from someone who looks like me.

Let me bring you back to the present day. I bombed all over the 2015 Kentucky derby half. I bombed all over that course and I have lived to tell the tale. I admit that I beat myself up over it. Just a few weekends before I hit a PR in the half on a much hillier, windier (GAWD THE WIND) course. Yes my allergies were acting up and the weather was rough but that didn’t stop me from wanting to self immolate at the finish line. They aren’t all PRs and in this season of my life I can count on just one thing. Perfectly inconsistent inconsistency.

So to that I say, go easy there. Protect that tender heart. Don’t let the negative thoughts creep in. Don’t berate yourself for being perfectly inconsistent during a training cycle. Don’t berate yourself for eating that extra cookie. Don’t let mom guilt sneak up behind you and then wave it’s ugly, hateful thoughts in your face. Give mom guilt the fucking middle finger and move the fuck on. Every time you train. Every time you walk out the door and fight the good fight in corporate America as a working mom. Every time your daughter sees you finish a race. You are winning. You are winning at this working mom athletic mom thing. You are slaying the dragons and taking names.

I need someone to hold me accountable to all of this. To beat the shit out of the devil who sits on my shoulder. Because God help me I am signing up for marathon number 2 and this time I have a goal. I have a very secret goal which I will whisper in your ear if you come closely… I want to be fit enough to run a 4 hour marathon. Then I want to run a 3:35 or maybe a 3:40 marathon. Because I want to qualify for Boston. It may take me longer than some, and it will probably take me longer than Courtney. If it does, Court, you better believe I’ll be driving from point to point from Hopkinton to Boston screaming lewd things and harassing you with a whoopie cushion! I want to be the best working-running-boston-qualifying mom in the entire world, and I ALWAYS hit my goals. It may take years but me and L and the guy in the hat and my best friend and all of the wonderful people that I work with will do this shit together.

It takes a village. I have the hardest job in the entire world, but it is also the BEST job.

*jenny May the 4th be with you.

Yep. I’m a nerd. I’ll geek out all over the place with you. 🙂 The guy in the hat will tell anyone who will listen that I’m a nerd who doesn’t love Star Wars. I like Star Wars. I’ll watch it. I’m SUPER DUPER pumped for the new movie coming at Christmas, but it’s just not my favorite. However. I will never fail to let a 5/4 go by without wishing my fellow nerds and geeks a Happy Star Wars day. May the odds be ever in your… whoops, may the fourth be with you. 🙂

A little Catholic humor… OH how I crack myself up.

catholic

 

Doctor Who is really more my speed. 🙂

doctorwho

 

I mean really though!!!

revengeofthe

 

Even I’m kind of sick of the GOT meme…

winteriscoming

 

My absolute favorite. They’re EWEs. GET IT? GET it????!!!!! Hahahahahahaha. So cute.

 

maythe4bewithewe

 

How long do you think the artist formerly known as Carrie Fisher’s cameo will be in the new movie? How long will they be able to keep her attached to this planet?

Then there’s these guys.

Finally…

May4th

*jenny throwing the vdot out the window, weee!

I’m back! OMG. I’m back!

So. The big news… is that I did it. I hit my goal. I ran a 1:57 half marathon at the Total Fitness Connection run walk for Children 2 weeks ago. Yes, folks, for once I nearly shit my pants after running because I was so happy and excited– not because of the trots.

I would love to tell you I’m going to write a beautifully detailed race report but I really don’t know if that will happen. It may happen. It may not. No promises.

Spoiler alert, I threw a hissy fit and walked for (exactly) 1 minute at mile 11. Courtney still felt good and blazed on ahead, but I was so glad because I felt like I was sucking wind and needed to give myself a pep talk. Once I said a prayer and told myself I came to finish this shit I continued on and felt strong for the last 2 miles. I’ve never hoped SO hard for a clock to read certain numbers. I choked up and flung myself into CB’s arms after crossing the finish line. It was glorious. I set a goal, stuck with a training plan (mostly) and hit my target. Nail. On. The. Head. I’m still so proud of myself. I really do believe that everyone should cross a few finish lines in their lives. Something about flying (re: shuffling) through a finish chute lined with people clapping and smiling is just my drug.

It looks like we’re going to work on base building for summer’s training cycle. Courtney picked the Maffetone method and I’m along for the ride. I’m glad to run low and slow for a few weeks. I don’t think I’ll get bored. I’m pretty toasted from speedwork and I’ve got some small aches and pains that could probably stand the rest of some slower miles.

Personal goals? To figure out my eating. One way or the other I need to come up with what kind of eating plan works best for me. That might be figuring out a solid fueling plan for each race distance or maybe it’s figuring out what to eat during regular training and the weeks leading up to race day. One of the walls that I hit during the TFC half was that I felt like I just ran out of energy. No bueno. As we say at work, key takeaway. Kill me.

To get stronger. Cross training. Historically I have sucked at cross training. But it’s time to add it back in. 2 times a week with weights or another cardio session. Also– continue yoga once a week. It feels good and it’s the only stretching I do. Bad Jenny.

In closing. The weather in Kentucky has gone from winter to summer over-night.

The face I gave T today when he looked at me as I was about to go run in the 80 degree, high humidity and midday sun and said, “at least it’s beautiful out today.”

I won’t complain too much. I love summer. It’s my fave. BRING ON THE SUN!

A picture of us with our perfect little sub 2 hour half marathon medals!!!

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*jenny vdot day something/ 5 easy miles. :)

A sad, I haz it. I feel like I’ve spent the last two days pulling myself out of some unnamed murky abyss that I’ve been flailing around in for the last month. Every year I hope it will get better, I hope it won’t hit me. Every year like clockwork the curtains fall somewhere around the beginning to end of January and don’t roll themselves back up until the sun starts shining in April or May.

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I want to make it abundantly clear that I blame (I do not really blame my parents for any of this shit) all of this shit on my parents. Those people took me to Florida every single year and *gasp* encouraged me to play outside every chance I got. Because of them I now have an addiction to vit D and turn into an absolute mess when winter rolls around every year. I hate you winter.

Maybe next year I’ll do as I say and not as I do and haul my butt to the GP for a low dose antidepressant to get me through. I must remember that I’m not the only one that suffers in my illness, my family suffers. Mental illness is like that though– she’s a cruel mistress that convinces you that you’re the only one who could possibly be suffering as much as you are. Ms. Mental Illness takes pride in isolating you from the ones you love and the ones who love you. Ms. Mental Illness can sometimes feel like the worst kind of inside joke you play on yourself over and over and over again with the self-loathing thoughts and the negative actions.

I’m an oversharer, it’s kind of what I do. I don’t care to share my struggles because for me it’s therapeutic to let people in on my secrets. I process via oversharing. Plus if anyone ever stumbles across this post and you haz a sad too, don’t hesitate to contact me. We can commiserate together, in the rain, with David Tennant.

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So my running has suffered. But I know it hasn’t suffered as much as it FEELS like it has in my head. Today I made it 5 glorious miles in the sunshine and warmth wearing a tank top and shorts. I even got a slight tan. I immediately felt worlds better.

I’ll do better I swear. I’ve gotten my hair done. I bought myself some new running clothes. I may buy a new pair of shoes. But I’ll do better. Pinkie Promise. 😀

I really dig Athleta tank tops. I love the ruching on the front for those days when your belly just isn’t on point with the bloat and all…

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She’s a diva.

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How about those Kentucky wildcats baby? SEC champions for 2014!!! Only 6 more games to go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I bleed blue)

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VDOT day 27/ QS threshold 2 mile repeats + 200s

I’m going to go wild and start with the run recap first today. Also, check out that subject line. I’m back on track!

Planned Run: Supposed to be 5 miles easy but I had to switch it up because I did the easy workout yesterday to test my knee out. So today’s workout became this monster.22615 planned workout

Weather: It’s a heatwave I tell you. 36 degrees and sunny.

Food: 2/3 of my bowl of cranberry almond quaker protein oatmeal. I don’t like this flavor iteration as well as the banana nut bread version. I didn’t realize I didn’t eat the entire bowl until I got back from the run and saw the little congealed oat-ey blobs that were left in the bowl. Whoops. Also one salted caramel gu after the first 2 mile repeat. I probably could have taken 2 gels on this run. At the very least this is my note to self to always carry 2 gels on speed days.

Shoes: I’ll do my very first run OOTD. Was I repping the rainbow run club or what in this get up?

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Details: Athleta sonar capris, the saucony half zip that i gushed about yesterday (yes it smelled), a lululemon short sleeve swiftly (it’s turquoise and other than that I don’t know, I bought it used from my dealer *ahem* a facebook BST group) and Brooks purconnect 3s.

Entertainment: My brand new easy playlist that I’m loving.

Actual Run: This mess:

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How did it feel: Honestly it was hard. I didn’t complete all of the 200s. I think I hate 200s. Yeah. I do. That’s a pretty solid; kill it kill it with fire. I either lost some fitness last week during winter storm Octavia (she has a name???) or something is off. I’m not sick anymore, I just got over a really weak head cold… the only thing I can think of is that I only ate a bowl of cereal for dinner last night because I commuted in to work yesterday and was exhausted by the time I got home last night. When I’m super tired I have a hard time eating. My stomach is weird. I won’t make that mistake again. I really need to start using Myfitnesspal to track my macronutrients. I think I could benefit from knowing that my little debbie addition isn’t helping to fuel my runs properly… ?

Now for some product reviews. I’m going to keep this nice and short. This stuff, both of them, taste as if you distilled satan’s piss down to it’s very essence and then added in pinches of dirt and dehydrated vomit for good measure. Here’s the deal. I like the IDEA of the recoverite. It has all kinds of yummy, recovery goodness in it. But the taste. I just can’t with that. I don’t know if Hammer is the only company with this type of product in the market? Fool me once, Hammer, fool me once… I’ll stick to my beloved Nuun in the future and continue the hunt (or just give up because really, chocolate milk is a pretty frakking delicious recovery drink) for a recovery product I like, re: can stomach.

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After forcing down that disgusting citrus concoction I made this and THIS, ladies and gentlemen, tastes like unicorn tears and the collected dew droplets on angel’s wings after the most beautiful sunrise you could possibly imagine. So it pretty much made up for it.

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My love hate relationship with Kanye continues. I remember purchasing and LOVING (like, so seriously loved it) Late Registration way back when I still had to put little rainbow reflective discs into a slot on my dashboard to listen to music. God. Aren’t we glad that’s all over? Anyway. I loved Kanye. I love this song. Like, so seriously love it. It brings a tear to my eye. How can he write such incredible songs and be such a douche lord? The world may never know. Here’s to hoping that one day soon we all wake up and he’s on Good Morning America announcing that Kim and all of his crazy antics were just a really long performance art piece. But that Nori man. What a beauty.

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Here’s what was left of the snowmageddon on my run route today. So beautiful. God’s country. I dream of living other places but my heart will always belong to Kentucky.

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I think Runner’s world posted this. It’s nice and shit.

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I have a lot of thoughts today so just bear with me. Here’s a chicken chasing a cat just for those of you who have stayed with me this long.

I’ll finish this whole crazy mashup off with this picture of me wearing full makeup. L goes to a semi-swanky part time early learning center right now for 5 hours a day. I figured out that if I wear the one nice pair of shoes that I own (mostly for work trips) to daycare pickup that the lululemoms don’t give me shiteating glares. SO I wear these Michael Kors flats with everything. Sweatpants? Holy jeans? A bathrobe? A GARBAGE BAG? Shit. Throw on the MKs gurl.

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Last but not least. This kid. She is 1000 shades of fucking awesome and I love her so much that it physically HURTS me.

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*jenny vdot day: I’ll get this back on track eventually.

I’m sitting at work humming along to this.

In prepartion for this. I love the beach boys. I love Brian Wilson in all of his crazy glory. He created music that will be played at the last supper during the end of the world. I was born in the wrong decade. The fact that John Cusack is playing the elder Brian Wilson is even more perfect. I hope this is good.

Last week’s snowpocolypse really cramped my style. I made it 20 miles of the 30 I was supposed to do. But this really strange sense of peace settled over me last week. I don’t want to beat myself up or feed the trolls that live in my head so I’m going to be thankful that I was able to get in those 20 miles in the midst of the largest winter storm Kentucky has seen in a decade. All of that treadmill running must have done a number on me because during an easy 5 miles on the treadmill Tuesday afternoon I started feeling some stabbing pains in my right knee. I immediately stopped running, tried to stretch out and began walking. I could see that my right knee was swelling a tiny bit and it FELT swollen. So I called it a night and took 800 mg of vitamin i and gave myself the next day off. I just manged to complete 5 miles outside in the parking lots of work and felt fabulous. I will chalk it up to going from exclusively running on asphalt to exclusively running on a treadmill. Dr google tells me that treadmills can irritate runner’s knee and my knees have absolutely been a point of contention in the past. On another note I was running the treadmill miles in the higher heel stack height glycerin 12’s. I’m going to go ahead and relegate those to “unable to wear for running”. I’m just so happy that my 5 miles today went smoothly and even better– were outside. It’s 30 degrees, sunny with no wind today, so basically it’s summer. Come on spring, come on spring!

Remember when I said I ordered that pair of saucony’s during snow madness a few posts back? Well. I lied. I also ordered a pair of saucony shorts, a tank top, a half zip and some tights. I sent the shoes back. I kept the apparel. I purchased some saucony shorts and a tank from an outlet in Florida last year and have absolutely loved them. Especially the tank. I’m picky about tank tops. I really like saucony apparel, I like the fabric they use and the fit of the medium size always consistently fits me. I love my lululemon but after cleaning out my reusable shopping bags I wondered to myself if my love had gone too far… $$$. 🙂

Anyway. I’d like to actively recommend this pullover. I wore it today and loved it. The fabric was VERY warm for a 30 degree run. I was warm before I even got out the door as soon as I put it on. It’s got a little usb chargable clip on light on the sleeve that provides a constant beam of light or a flashing beam for running after dark. The slanted hip zippered pocket was the perfect size for my iphone 5c INSIDE of an otter box (this part is always important to me). The only thing I’d like to see is a cord guidance hole inside of the zipper pocket. I’m not sure if maybe I could create one myself, I may try. Otherwise. It’s beautiful. Saucony isn’t paying me to tell you this and it’s on clearance just about everywhere right now! 🙂 I forsee this being an excellent topper with shorts for those early spring runs when the air still has a bite to it. I bought the purple and blue version and am strongly considering the green as well as soon as Lent is over (more on that below). The picture is a link if you’re so inclined to click through to the saucony site. 🙂 I’m pretty much in love with the other gear I got as well and will write more about that later!

saucony pullover

 

So I’m a practicing Catholic. I haven’t been a good Catholic for a number of years. I freely admit that I went back to church when I found out I was pregnant with Lydia specifically because I wanted to have her baptized. God and I have had many arguments in the past. We still do. There are times when I don’t agree with the things that the priests tell me are major tennants of my religion, but many times God and I are able to reconcile these differences on the side. The long and the short of it is this– I believe there’s a God, I believe that I speak with God best during running and mass and I believe that religion and spirituality are deeply personal, internal things that should be handled inside oneself. So there you go. That’s probably the most you will hear me talk about this except… there’s lent. OH lent. That lovely time of year when we get our ashes to church and get ashes rubbed on our foreheads to remind us all that we’re going to die and return to ashes. It’s so chipper right? Ugh. Then for 40 days we (Catholics, but hey, you might choose to torture yourself for fun too) fast, abstain from meat on Fridays and give something that we really really really love up because the pope hates us and wants us to be miserable human beings. I kid. Mostly. Catholic guilt. Anyway. This is a really good read including some insight from papa Francis about the giving up of this year. I really liked it. Especially this part: “I distrust a charity that costs nothing and does not hurt.” I think this is a new life mantra for me. So many times it feels like charity is something I do to gain likes on facebook. I’m just being honest. Laying it all bare. It shouldn’t be like that. It should hurt. In the best way. So this year for Lent I gave up discretionary spending for myself. I’ve already caught myself circumventing this by spending on Lydia instead– justifying in my head, well it’s for the baby. Last night I slipped up and bought into a coop group on facebook for a really ugly shirt on facebook. So ugly shirt, party of this gal right here! I know I made the right choice because this is hurting… a lot. The idea is to save some of the money I would blow needlessly on myself and turn it into a charitable donation of some sort. Let’s just say I’ve found out a lot about myself in the past few weeks. Shewwww, okay that’s the most religion talk you’ll get out of me. MOVING on.

Songs I’ve found that I like running to lately; the only time it’s acceptable to admit you listen to Mr. Worldwide.

Remember this one! OH man, was this the jam circa 1999 or what!

Finally– shout out to my wannabe punk rock days! 🙂

*jenny VDOT day 19 & 20/ Easy 5 & Threshold Repetition

I’m back! I know you missed my riveting run recaps. 🙂 First things first– this Valentine goes out to all of you, from me.

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I think it’s safe to say she absolutely loved it.

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She hasn’t stopped holding tea parties since Saturday afternoon and as soon as I clean up every tiny little frakking piece she’s begging for me to bring it all back out again. Table + tea set + chocolate= L’s best day ever. Or as Tony calls it, Christmas in February.

This was forecasted for today:

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… and this actually showed up!

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Those fuzzy little bitches were such prisses about going out in the snow. I basically had to carry Burt’s fat ass out there and drop him so he could go pee. I act like I’m frustrated but in reality I was up at 4am checking out the windows and couldn’t wait for the dogs to get up so to better asses the snow situation.

I cackled. Waverly, Tennessee you’ve been warned.

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Finally– I found an honest to God unicorn at Target last night. Probably the last one in a city of bare bread shelves and empty milk coolers.

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I’ll top all of this off by saying that I’ve tried desperately to love you all weekend, Matt Smith. But you see? My heart STILL belongs to David Tennant’s hair and I’m still mourning it’s loss and that smile… and you have no eyebrows and your forehead is enormous and Amy Pond is just insufferable and Rory, just don’t even get me started. Gah. I’ll stop now.

 

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Now that I’ve gotten my morning swoon out of the way. Thursday was an easy 5 miler and Saturday was my shuffled speed work session added in to the Hot Chocolate 15k race that Courtney and I have participated in the past 2 years!

Planned Run: 5 miles easy on Thursday. Saturday’s workout:

2mi warmup

4 x 1mi @ 8:56/mi with 1 min recovery

8 x 200m @ 0:58/rep with 200 m recovery

2mi cooldown
Weather: Thursday’s weather was sunny and cold and brilliant. Beautiful and clear. Saturday was the same!

Food: Thursday I ran in the afternoon and I believe I ate at least 1 half pound of the left over valentine’s day candy from Lydia’s vday candy bags and a turkey sandwich. I’m NOT a healthy living blogger. 😉 Saturday was a Belvita cinnamon and sugar pack and 2 cups of coffee.

Shoes: Both runs were completed in the blue flows. I went a little snow crazy and ordered a pair of Saucony triumph ISOs this morning at 4am. I’m not sure what I was thinking other than, Ooooo pretty. *shrug* They’ll be good for easy runs.

Entertainment: I’m going to set my spotify playlists on fire that’s how sick of them I am.
Actual Run:

Thursday’s run:

Saturay’s run:


How did it feel: Thursday’s miles felt a little harder than normal and on Friday morning when I woke up sneezing with a snotty nose I knew why. Duh duh duh. Nobody warns you about the hit YOUR own immune system takes when your bitty baby starts daycare. Nobody. Saturday’s run was just hard. It was rough. I’ll save those feels for my race recap. 🙂