Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Another green day!

One more green day on the calendar after running 3mi last night, despite having much to do. It makes it that much more satisfying when I make time for it during a busy schedule. I still have to improve my percentage of skips. So far, out of 12 planned workouts, I have skipped 5. I didn't get off to a very good start -- especially last week with Christmas preparations and whatnot. I am half tempted to "make them up" by skipping my rest days, but I know that's not smart.

I ended up doing quasi-speedwork last night after the first 1.5 miles, mostly because I got bored. I counted out lightposts -- walk half the distance to the lightpost, "comfortably hard" (~9:50/mi) for 2 light posts, and "hard" (~80% effort, ~8:15-8:30/mi) for 2.5 light posts. It kept things interesting, at least.

Tonight is rest (yay!) and I think we are going to go out dancing. Double yay!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

More green.. not the spendable kind

So, in my color-coded accountability chart, days highlighted in green mean that I have completed the day's planned activity, in full, on the day it was actually scheduled. Well, I have a bit more green on my calendar than I did last time I posted, which makes me happy. The schedule called for bridges on christmas day and a 30-40min bike on Friday.... RIGHT. I did nada on Christmas, and decided I needed to get out and run, so I replaced the bike with just a 3mile run. Best to finish off the week well, right?

I know it's only 2 days into this week, but I've been a good girl so far. 3 mile run on Sunday at something like 10:18/mi pace. Pilates last night (in between fits of laughter while my pooch tried to "help" me with my rollovers. haha). The DVD I followed has a pretty intense leg section, and I was a little bit worried I'd wake up this morning completely unable to walk.. but I feel ok. I can tell I worked them, but I'm not gimpy or overly sore. Which is good, because I have to run 3 miles tonight. Score. Gotta get more green! I'm determined to finish this week up according to my plan!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


So, Devon says I have to update my blog. Actually, she said that over a month ago, but I didn't have it set up to email me when I got a comment, so I had no clue until now. Whups.

Let's see here...
-Ran the Native Sun 10K, which is the race I was training with my coworker to complete without walk breaks. Initially she claimed she'd get me to run it without walk breaks and at a pace of 10min/mile. She had me drinking the koolaid for a little while, but about a month into our training, I had a feeling I had to take it one step at a time and focus solely on getting rid of walk breaks, and let the pace fall wherever it needed to fall. I completed my no-walk-break goal, despite ridiculously heavy rain before the start of the race and for the first mile. It was drenching rain, to the point that my socks and feet were soaked and squishy, AND I left the ipod in the car so I wouldn't risk ruining it. Generally if my ipod runs out of juice on a run, I take it as a sign and go home. So to say conditions were less than ideal would be an understatement. But the show/race must go on. Dave was really great -- he had some friends of ours come out to the race at mile 2, mile 4, and the finish to cheer me on. It was such a great surprise, and it meant even more knowing that they went out and stood there in the rain. Florida may not be the place I want to spend the rest of my life, but I have met some really great and caring people here. I don't remember what my pace was.. I'm going to bet it was somewhere around 10:50 to 11 mins per mile. I clearly would've liked faster, but speed wasn't the goal.. So I was pretty happy.

After the 10K race, I will admit without reservation that I slacked in a big way. I took 2, maybe even 3 weeks with no running whatsoever. Bad, bad BAD Jen. I should add that I haven't yet really worked crosstraining into my routine, so when I say I didn't run, that means I did NOTHING.

I was trying to decide what my next goal would be. Did I want to focus on getting faster, and just train for speed for a few months, maybe pick a 5K in Feb or March and shoot for a 9:30/mi pace? Or did I want to train for the Gate. The problem is this -- at my current pace, I do not enjoy running long distances (I stop having fun around 2 miles, I'm ready to stop at 3 miles, and by 5 or 6 miles I'm hoping for a drive-by shooting). So part of me didn't really want to train for a 15K, knowing I wouldn't really ENJOY it. Completing it wouldn't really be a worthwhile goal, because I've done it before. I had almost talked myself out of it, but here's the thing.... I really LIKE the river run. It's the biggest event of the year for the J-ville running community. And since I've gotten involved with Team in Training, it's been fun to go to this event and catch up with people who I might not have seen in a while, and meet the new folks. Granted, I could always just GO and not actually RUN... but somehow that feels like cheating.

So, I'm training for the river run. To make it more of a challenge, and to keep me focused, I actually printed out the little 12-week training plan. The last 2 times I did it, it was 2 months after a half or a full marathon, so I didn't really need to train UP to the distance. But now I do, and I think the training plan will be a good little motivator. I modified it a little bit -- switched up the days of the week to fit my schedule, upped the mileage a bit to include an 8mi run -- and printed up a few copies. Then I devised this whole color-coding scheme of accountability.. Workouts I complete as scheduled get highlighted in green. Workouts I reschedule are highlighted in blue. Workouts I fail miserably at and just plain skip get highlighted in purple. I will admit that there is as much purple as there is green so far. I got into a habit of running 2x per week and doing no crosstraining, so it will take a decent time commitment to stick to this schedule. And maybe that's what I need. Even with the running I've done, I still have about 20-25lb that I would like to lose. I want to go to the doc to get my thyroid/hormone levels checked, because it seems to me like I should be losing at least a LITTLE weight by now.

Anyway, that's where running stands at the moment. My goal is to complete this whole training schedule, and the run, without walk breaks. We'll see if that's realistic once I hit the longer miles.... and the Green Monster... :)

There has been a decent amount of activity in this part of my life, and I am pretty excited about it. After doing Devon's engagement pictures in November (my first real solo shoot not revolving around my canine child), I had several people contact me to express interest in having me shoot them -- 2 "trash the dress" shoots, and one family session with a coworker who just had the sweetest baby boy. So far one of the TTD sessions has been scheduled, and we're waiting until after the holiday madness to schedule the other one. Whether the family session will happen any time in the near future, I guess only time will tell. I'm still not really charging at this point, since I'm doing a wide variety of things, so most everything I do will be for the first time. I don't feel comfortable charging someone when I can't give them even the slightest idea of what the final product will look like. I wouldn't fork over cash for "what's behind door #2," so I certainly wouldn't ask someone else to. I also am not ready to do weddings yet. I still have more to learn, both camera technique and just the "making it work" logistics of the day. I think that will come as I assist with more of them. I've been really blessed to bump into a wedding photographer on The Internets who has been ridiculously helpful and has let me tag along to shoots and weddings while I do my best to soak everything up like a sponge and not screw anything up too terribly!

I took some pictures of Clancy by the christmas tree, and there were a few that turned out really well. I showed them to a few people at work, and I got an email back from someone saying "That picture is breath-taking. You're in the wrong line of work, Jen!" That pretty much gave me the warm n fuzzies. I think it's still a long way off to make that leap (I sometimes wish Dave were independently wealthy so I could just make the leap and force myself to sink or swim), since I am an extremely practical girl by nature.... but I actually see it as a possibility now. Not a definite, but not a far-flung fantasy either.

One step at a time..