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May 2008

Friday Fill-Ins

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1. For me sitting around is the opposite of creativity.
2. The Alchemyst was the last excellent book I read.
3. I like fill-ins because they provide me with insight into my friend's lives.
4. In nature I like looking at flowers, waterfalls, mountains, and rocks (I have a fascination with rocks).
5. Dolores should win the US elections (have you read her fibery platform).

Dolores
6. The last time I laughed with all my belly was yesterday when I was doing Wondergirl's hair and I was drying it. She was so cold that I warmed her up by directing the hair dryer to different parts of her body. At one point, she turned her tushy towards me and told me to warm up her bottom. She wiggled it and she just squealed and then we just laughed together non-stop.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to dinner with my cycling gals, tomorrow my plans include riding a 60 mile loop (it makes me cringe just typing that number! My butt is going to be sore!) and Sunday, I want to rest!


My boy is a runner too!

Img_5064We put Boyo in a Running Clinic, where they teach them form and provide them with advice on how to be a better runner. From his soccer days, we have seen that he is a talented runner as he can get from one side of the field to the other faster than anyone else, so we decided to give the Running Clinic a try.

Yesterday, we had his first Time Trials, we weren't expecting much as this was only his first time and Sam and I know that running endurance only happens by practicing. Well...Boyo, showed us up! He is super talented!

Time Trials

400 meters: 1 minute 45 seconds

200 meters: 45 seconds

If the kiddo can keep the same speed for a mile, he can run a 7 minute mile pace! That is blooming fast! He runs about 3 minutes faster per mile than I do already. Imagine what a little training could do!

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a runner in our midsts!

Not to be left out, Wondergirl ran 1/2 a mile yesterday too! All without dropping a sweat.

Mama is so proud...my little munchkins are runners! I am so glad they turned out like their Dad and not a couch potato like me!


Friday Fill-Ins

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1. On my laziest day I like to sit down and watch movies!
2. exercising makes me feel like I'm being productive.
3. I love little babies and big dates with hubby.
4. This summer I want to go to the beach.
5. Keeping track of my Needle Knitting made me start my blog.
6. Red strawberries and orange smoothies.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to scrapbooking some family pictures, tomorrow my plans include running and sneaking out with hubby to see Indiana Jones, Sunday, I want to go on a walk with my family!


Half Marathon Spill

Pre-Run

Dsc06509 The excitement for an event like this is indescribable! The atmosphere can be comparable to the pre-opening of the Rhinebeck Fiber festival. Everyone is eager and enthusiastic and the place is charged with 1000 volts of electricity! As you look around, you see people from different backgrounds come together for one single purpose: to prove to themselves that they can do it. Some faces look a little worried, others have a huge smile from ear to ear, others are quiet and yet others are loud and boisterous. The atmosphere is one that I will never forget!

We boarded the buses at 5:00am (ungodly hour!!!). After being in the bus for what seem an hour (probably 20minutes!) we arrived at the starting line. The sky was still dark and the air had a slight chill that made us all wish for our blankets and beds. We weren't cold for long though, they had provided bonfires for us to stand around and warm our butts up before the race. Sam and I didn't have to walk around long before we found our friends Mo and her friend Sheena gathered around one of the bonfires.

As we gathered around the fire chatting and making new friendships, the excitement just kept rising. Just like when we  knitters get together and chat about differences in needles, you know bamboo versus metal, or crystal palace dpns versus plymouth, I found out what runners talk about when gathered. Can you guess? Shoes! One of the top topics is shoes and the models and why they don't work for someone or why they work for someone else. It felt so great to finally have found someone to talk about my sneakers! It may sound silly to someone who doesn't know about running shoes just like when you talk to a non-knitter about needles but to finally be able to talk about it felt great! It took me a long time to find my perfect shoe match and I finally found some souls that shared the same feeling. Talk also involved previous races and how they had performed in those. One gal in our group has a goal to run a half in every state in the US! Isn't that great...that's 50, 50!! Wow, amazing goal!

At the Starting Line

Dsc06507 I knew my pace so I was ready to go to the back of the line. I had trained at 10 or 10:30 minute mile pace and running etiquette tells you not to bug those who are faster than you. So I left my Sam at the beginning of the line and I kept going to the back with Mo, her being a bit faster than me, I was prepared to leave her at her "pace spot" too but she nudged me to stay there with her. We were scheduled to start at 7:00am and I was ready, I had taken one GU ten minutes before and I was all ready, 7:05 and no gun went off! I was antsy and ready to get it done. Finally at 7:06 we started and off we went. I tried to keep a slow pace...it is key to start slow so you don't burn out (words from Jeff Galloway's book). As we started, there were people everywhere! I felt claustrophobic...people everywhere...in my personal bubble! Mo and I were concerned about the number of people around us but soon we saw a little hill and we knew that that was the spot where we could take off and gain some bubble space.

As we climbed up the hill, we wiggled to the left side of the road trying to get ahead and gain some little space. Step by step we gained some space, a few minutes later and we were done with the only hill in the course and we had plenty of space to more around. After this point, we never had a problem with overcrowding. It was so great running alongside Mo but I was a bit slower than her and as such she took off and I stayed behind. I felt a little lonely but then I found that almost everyone was running by themselves so finding comfort in that, I gave it all I had. Next thing, I was already on mile 7! How in heck did that happen?

At mile 8, I took one more GU and sloshed some water on my head and kept going. I was feeling so great that the next two miles flew by. When I reached mile 10, I was giggling with joy, I only had a 5K left and my watch was telling me that I was almost 1 hour ahead of my estimated time! By golly, if I kept the same pace I could finish in 2 hours, I got even more excited and I sloshed more water on my head on the next stops.

The Finish Line

Dsc06508I had no idea where the finish line was, I read in the book that I would be able to see it from far away and sure enough I saw something but despite the big letters on the banner I couldn't see them (I am a little blind when it comes to seeing things far away). I still kept going, I was so excited and happy that I had a huge smile on my face...then when I could actually see the banner from two blocks away and read clearly FINISH, I got butterflies in my stomach and the butterflies got little wings on my feet and I gave it all I had. My little legs went faster and faster and once I saw the clock at the finish line and I was 1 block away and I had just seconds before the clock hit 2:00 hours, I thought of all my training, of my children's faces, of my hubby who was already past the finish line with the finishers and his face when he saw me coming 20 minutes before my estimated time and a surge of energy came over me! I had done it! I crossed the finish line in less than 2 hours! I really wanted to cry but the joy was too much and my smiles couldn't be contained. My wonderful Sam was there trying to take pictures of me coming through the finish line. It was fabulous! A wonderful occasion! Being in the "Finisher's Circle" with my hubby and friends was absolutely amazing! Seeing my hubby's face when I came in and then my friend Mo really brought me almost to tears. I was happy. I was proud. I was contented to have seen my training pay off. 

Hubby and I now have one extra thing that we enjoy together: our love for running. He has been my inspiration in all my training and in yesterday's triumph. Hurray for running!

Post Run

Dsc06510It is a day later and I am still giddy from all the excitement. True, I am sore, really sore. The downhill course killed my quads big time. Then yesterday afternoon as I was walking around with regular clothes I realized that my n!pples felt sensitive and sore and realized that the water sloshing soaked through my top and I guess it irritated me, next time, I'll make sure to put some Vaseline or Glide on before the race. By the way, a huge thank you to Nora for giving me the Glide advice; it worked wonderfully for both hubby and I!  Despite the aches and pains, I had a wonderful time and I am looking forward to my next half!

Actual Time by Milliseconds

1:59:49

Pictures: Only 4...so sad :(. Hubby is making a face in the last picture...he doesn't like pictures and he always sticks his tongue out during pictures.


The Day has Arrived

Ogdenmarathon

Tomorrow by this time, I will be about in mile 3 of the Ogden Half Marathon. By 9:30am, I should be crossing the finish line and bringing my training for the past three months to an end. In a sense, I feel a little sad that the day has finally come and then I won't have anything to look forward to which has lead me to think of another half or a possible full marathon, the Top of Utah. My neighbor Nish keeps nudging me to prep for the full marathon in September but I don't know if I have enough time...I would need to dedicate about 4 hours one day a week to a looooooong run...I don't know if I can commit to so much time nor to so much distance; but maybe, just the Half. We'll see how I feel after tomorrow's experience.

The past week has been an easy one, I have even knitted two items for the next issue of LKC, which only means that I have been on my butt more than the weeks before. I have tried very hard not to exercise too hard nor to injury myself doing dumb things...like falling off my bike again. Speaking of falling off the bike, my leg is healing well, except that I have a slight strained right ankle from not being able to clip out of my shoes. The right calf is also sporting a huge round bruise, the remains of the pedal hitting me right on the back.

I am excited about tomorrow and anxious as this will be my very first race. A few friends and my darling Sam will be there but we are all at different paces which will have us all finishing at different times. I keep thinking of the items I need to pack, the indecision of carrying my own little water bottles as I do when I run by myself....one more day, one more.


Beef It!

Pedaling along about 18mph, a railroad crossing coming up ahead. Look both ways, nope, no train it is safe to cross. I have crossed plenty of railroad crossings before so this was no biggy. Sam had gone before me and he had done just fine, my front tire went over and then I saw it and I knew right away that I was in trouble. The tracks were deeper than I was used to and not only that, they were set at an extreme angle. Crap! I felt my entire body tensed up, microseconds passed, and I knew that I was going to beef it. My back tire passed over the track but I was already heading to the side of the road. I tried to stop so I put on the brakes which sent my front tire skidding on the bloody gravel! My front tire falling, I tried to unclip and I couldn't, I braced myself for the worst--ending up in the ravine! I felt the crunch of the gravel as I slid down on my side. Finally the bike stopped...and I stopped...and I was trapped under it. Good thing is an all carbon bike thus light as a feather. I tried to move and I couldn't, my right shoulder hurt like bloody hell. Sam by this time had turned around and was trying to assess the damage. Can you get up? Nope, I can't. Please help me up. He helped me and held me for a few seconds. I could feel the tears swelling and on the border of spilling down my cheeks. Then a car stopped to ask if I was okay, I swallowed my tears and said yep. I was okay, and I truly was. I was in one piece, a little bruised but in one piece. I looked down my leg and blood was dripping from a little spot. Darn it! Our friends that were riding with us had turned back by this time and had joined us to make sure that I was okay. A little shaken but okay. As any other cyclist, I picked my bike up and inspected it closely....my beauty had fallen. How stupid could I had been?!?

Adding salt to the wound, as we were ready to pick up and go I saw that my front tire was a little flat...I touched it and sure enough it felt quite flattened. So we turned it around and there it was: a stinking thorn--I took it out and air just popped out of my tire! Darn it!!! At this point, I was sure pissed at my stupidity. I was holding our ride...we had just barely gone 15 miles and we still had 25 miles to go! They all asked if I wanted to go home. Go home, I answered? Nope, no, definitely not! Let's keep going. We are just 15 miles into our ride...we must continue.

15 minutes later we were on our way...new tube in my tire a little bruised but both of us in one piece. As I shifted, my gears were not working. My triple comp had only two of the gears working, all I could think about is the major hill coming up and how I would have to ride without one of my gears. My bike and I were limping away (but I know she has a heart and like my heart we don't give up easily). We just had to work together and put our chins up.

43 miles from start to finish. 28 miles after the mistake. My right side full of bruises. My bike needs a major tune up (thankfully the frame is not scratched anywhere!).

I am grateful that I was kept safe and that my scratches will heal up. I am grateful that Sam was with me to take care of me and my bike. I am grateful that my bike is okay. But most of all, I am SO grateful that my scratches are superficial enough so that I can still run the half marathon next week, I would hate to have had all my training go to waste!.


Friday Fill-Ins

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1. The pozole had an extra secret ingredient; it was bay leaves!
2. I can see the rain through my window.
3. Right now, I need breakfast.
4. To the movies (Ironman) and dinner (Indian Food) is where I went Thursday night; it was fabulous.
5. Why does my left calf hurt so much?
6. All I can think of is the half marathon coming up on May 17th.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to staying home and watching some movies, tomorrow my plans include a 10K race in the morning and then a 30mile bicycle ride and Sunday, I want to sleep!

Currently Knitting:

BooteesBaby bootees for a friend who just had her little baby about two weeks ago. Pattern comes from Easy Knitted Socks by Jeannette Trotman. The book has easy to follow patterns for the new knitter. Socks done on two needles, booties done on two needles, or socks done with dpns. The Textured Baby Bootees are easy as it comes. All the parts are done separately on two needles and then all the little panels are seamed. The approach is different but easy and they create a pair of cute little bootees!


Failure is not an option!

Wednesday Quote:

Pain is temporary, it may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever."

Lance Armstrong

I read this quote over the weekend on my way to my Saturday ride. Sam was driving and a few friends were with us in the car. When I read it, the quote hit a spot in me. I have always been a stubborn mule and when I fall, I dust myself off and just get up and keep going. It is said that it is hard to defeat a person who never gives up, I would like to be a person like that.

The quote by Lance hit a more special spot yesterday as I went out for my last long run before my very first half marathon, May 17th. The first 10 miles were a piece of cake, I was listening to a book on my Ipod and I felt great, I was pumped and was going at a very leisurely pace. By mile 11 though, I was feeling tired and hot. The temperature was about 70 degrees with a nice sunny day which is perfect for cycling but a little too hot for running. My dark skin attracts the sun and I was literally baking, I have blisters on my arms to prove it (I wear 80spf all the time but even with that on).  By mile 12, I was able to see home (it is a long road) and I just felt sooo tired, I was ready to give up...the heat was way too much for me. I drank a little bit of water and then I dumped the last of the water on my head, the cooling was heaven sent and my heart was a little revived but my legs just wanted to stop. Then, I remember the quote that I had read over the weekend, I pondered it and it just hit my heart. I can't give up on the last mile home, I just can't. I kept going and going then when I finally turned into the cul de sac, I saw my kids and hubby and I just sprang to life. I was home, I had done it! I didn't give up.  I had gone 13.4 miles...a full half marathon and a little more.


Friday Fill-Ins

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1. Two of my favorite ingredients in a drink are ice and water!
2. The ability of the body to heal itself often amazes me.
3. You can keep doing that forever, the dog is fetching.
4. mashed avocados, chopped tomatoes, chopped onions, and chopped serranos, mix it all together and voila! You have guacomole!
5. If I had a yard with a garden, I would love to grow calla lilies.
6. swimming is best au naturel.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to taking a nap, tomorrow my plans include running 6 miles, cycling 30 miles, watching Made of Honor, and Sunday, I want to sleep!


Sleepless in Utah

LittlebennyLittle Benny has been sick since last Friday which means one thing for everyone in the house: no sleep! The no sleep unfortunately turns us all into crabby monsters. Today, I woke up tired, crabby, sleepy and frankly I was ready to throw in the towel so into the doctor's we went. Thankfully they had an opening at 9:20am which gave us enough time to get Wonderboy to school and then into the doctor's.

The verdict: Little Benny has ear infections (on both ears) right one not so bad but the left one is about to go pop! Uggh, just what I feared. No wonder she has been so crabby and crying non-stop for days.

We got medicine and now we just need to wait it out and hopefully it will start working by tonight...maybe tonight we can all get a good night's sleep.

Zzzzzzzzzzz