Thursday, July 30, 2009

Push it good!

Well, after a less-than-impressive run on the treadmill in the AC on Tuesday, I felt like I had something to prove yesterday on my 2-miler. I stuck to the happy AC'd treadmill, and managed a 10:27min/mi pace. I wouldn't win any medals, but I felt extremely accomplished. Then I took the dogs for a walk, and took Max to his agility class, which was a ton of fun. I wish Clancy was dog-friendly so that we could take him to something like that. I think he'd really enjoy it. I'm hoping that we can find something in the fall that might help him get socialized.. some kind of one-on-one lessons, maybe? It has to be a super controlled environment for me to feel comfortable trying it. It's no fun feeling like you brought the bully to the park.
I have another 3.5-miler to do tonight, and I'm going to take it nice and easy so I can be rested for the 5-miler on Saturday. I think I'll keep it no higher than 12min/mi for the first two miles. And on the treadmill, it's a little easier to force myself to stay at that pace. Well, a lot easier. I'm not about to run off the front of the thing. :)  I must say, it's been rather nice being able to run AFTER work. I can't wait until it starts cooling off. I can aaaaalmost feel it coming -- I drove back to my friend's condo with the windows down on Monday. Aaahhh.
After I do my run tonight I'm going to meet Dave back at the house after his run downtown, so I'll be able to get in some quality time with my boys. I won't have time for a movie, but we'll get some chill time and stuff some food in our faces. lol.
Wednesday Foodstuffs:
B: oatmeal-n-OJ
L: half of the steak leftover from Sunday and teryaki rice
S: dark chocolate square
D: two packs of oatmeal ... I was too tired to go get real food. lol

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Just a day

Yesterday was eh. Boring morning at work followed by a busy afternoon. Pet-sitting gets better every day. Taking one of the dogs to agility class tonight. That should be fun. Going to do my best to get in 2mi on the treadmill before that. I'll have to see if that will work out though.. I need to leave time to shower too...
Yesterdays goods:
B: oatmeal-n-OJ
S: dark chocolate piece
L:  turkey and provolone w/lettuce and tomato on a wheat wrap; chex mix
D: 3/4 of a medium firehouse hook-n-ladder w/o mayo; 20oz Dr Pepper (total craving. worth every calorie!)
E: 3.5mi on the treadmill @ 11:26/mi. I'm thinking I might adjust my goal pace to 11:30. I hate to back off this early, but I don't want to burn out, either..
The end!
I'm so exciting..

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Beeftastic day

I ate too much red meat yesterday, by a lot!
B: oatmeal-n-OJ
S: dark chocolate piece
L: Times Grill -- most of a 1/2lb cheeseburger and some sweet potato fries (i feel sick just reading that)
D: lean beef stir fry with bell peppers, soy sauce, and BBQ sauce over rice
Then last night I did a bit of yoga (I think I made it 3 whole minutes this time. lol) and some crunches to make myself feel less pathetic. :) I was supposed to run 3.5mi this morning, buuuut somehow I managed to bring many runing tops/bras, but NO shorts. What the heck? I need to run back to target for a couple of random things after work -- there's a Target maybe 0.5mi from where I'm house/pet-sitting -- and I think I'll pick up a new pair. I only have a couple that I like, so it's not really wasteful spending. I also have access to an air-conditioned gym where I am this week, so I'm thinking I'll stop at target, go to the condo, walk the dogs, hit the gym, run to the little deli place and pick up something for dinner, then take it home and feed the dogs/eat/shower ... and then relax and try to tire out the cats. :) I need to call my mom, too.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Home away from home..

Saturday began a week of house/pet-sitting for a friend. She has 5 cats and 2 dogs, and I have my hands full! I haven't slept much, but I'm  hoping that will get better tonight.
Food from this weekend:
SAT: (NOT a good food day)
B: oatmeal & OJ
"L": a shortbread cookie
D: 2 slices Al's pizza, of the pepperoni variety
SUN: (marginally better..)
B: 2 packets oatmeal
L: peanut butter & banana sandwich
D: 1/2 a steak, grilled asparagus, and terriyaki rice
Workout-wise, well, I touched on my Saturday run... I made it 2.5mi at goal pace and had to stop, and I was completely and totally done. I walked 3/4mi and then did a little bit of speedwork, just because I wanted to be home sooner. Sunday is my rest day, though it didn't feel very restful. Tonight I'll attempt to do yoga again, though I'm not sure how that will go with 7 animals! My legs and knees are feeling a little tired/sore for some reason, so I don't think I'll do intervals tomorrow. I have access to a gym, so maybe I'll do 3.5 on the treadmill and see how I feel.. I'm  not a treadmill fan, but I'm an AC fan. I desperately need a good run, but I have a feeling it's unlikely that I'll get one this week in light of the lack of sleep and less-than-stellar eating. Oh well. One day at a time.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Not a good morning

Just got in from a sucky long run. But I guess I could just say "a long run," and the sucky part is kind of implied. ARGH. I'm so frustrated. I either need to drastically reduce my goal speed, which means running slow enough that I'm bored and not enjoying myself........ or quit training for a half marathon. And honestly, I want to quit the half marathon training. I'm not a solid enough runner at SHORT distances to realisticly train for a half marathon. And this is not a pity party -- this is fact. I've done this same thing before, and it wasn't enjoyable. Every step of that half marathon sucked. At least I had done it for charity and in my grandfather's honor -- those were the only things casting a slightly positive light on that race. Sooooooo what delusion is it that makes me think this time will be different, when I'm starting at the same point and doing the same things?? It won't be, and it's going to suck. But I already paid my $100 registration fee so that i could run it with my husband -- who I will make miserable for 13.1 miles. Yay for bonding.
Food from yesterday:
Breakfast: oatmeal n OJ
Snack: piece of dark chocolate
Lunch: panera chicken ceasar salad with dressing on the side -- only used about a half Tbsp instead of the 5 or 6 they gave me
Snack: grande light java chip frappucino
Dinner: 2 hot dogs and a handful of apple-cinammon mini rice cakes

Friday, July 24, 2009

Nothing special.

I had expected the scale to read 158 this morning. Surprisingly, it was only 150.8. I'm positive it will go back up over the next couple of days. I'm going to stop weighing myself so that I can pretend I'm staying there. hehe
I flaked on my run  yesterday.. but I did run with Kate this morning. Introduced her to my favorite thing -- intervals!  Intervals always make the workout seem shorter. :)
Food from yesterday:
Breakfast: packet of apple-cinammon oatmeal and a small glass of OJ
Lunch: 2 mini-bagel ham & cheese sandwiches from target, 100cal serving of honeywheat pretzels
Snack: Another 100cal serving of pretzels
Dinner: Italian sausage delight left-overs
Snack: handful of swedish fish.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The thing about scales...

Scales and I aren't really friends. My weight changes a lot on a daily basis, so the only real way for me to get a good handle on my weight would be to weigh myself every day -- and I just don't really like the idea of that. But sometimes I'll go through a couple of days where I will weigh myself, just to see how it looks. The last couple of days were an example of that.
I think my body handles water kind of poorly. I have a bad habit of not drinking anything except at meal time, and even then not very much. So my body is probably chronic(al?)ly dehydrated. And as of yesterday I'm into the dizzy-spells portion of the summer  (yaaaaay), wherein standing up = loss of vision and dizziness for 5 seconds or so. So clearly, some switch is in the wrong position somewhere in there ::points at herself::. And we all know that water and bloat have a sometimes-large effect on the numbers on the scale.  Imagine my entertainment at the following scale read-outs:
Tuesday: 153.6
Wednesday: 154.4
Thursday: 150.4
I was laughing so hard this morning. Even if it were physically possible for someone to lose 4lb in one day without hacking off a portion of their body, I can tell you for certain that yesterday would be the least likely day for it to happen. As evidence, I present my eating for the day of Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009 AD:
Breakfast: packet of oatmeal and a small glass of OJ (okay, sounds like a good start)
Snack: 11 o'clock chocolate -- piece of heart-healthy dark chocolate (uh, not the best way to lose 4lb, but.. okay...)
Lunch: 1/2-palm-sized pork loin slice with a big helping (1.5 cups?) mixed veggies (not too shabby....)
Dinner: Olive garden!  2 deliciously-greasy pieces of garlic bread, 3/4 a glass of wine, grilled steak and chicken skewers with bell peppers, roasted potatoes, and mixed squash... and a cappuccino.
Really not horrible overall.. and you'd be amazed at how hard it is to avoid getting a cheese-smothered meal at OG. I had to really try for that one. Yeno, cause I had to run in the morning, and that would be a recipe for disaster. Not that I actually ran, mind you... *sigh*
But I WILL run this evening, and I'm doing intervals with Kate in the morning, I believe.. and bosu workout tomorrow after I get my car serviced... Yeah...
I totally lost 4 lbs!!!
I'm so kidding.  I'm sure it'll all be back tomorrow. But that was pretty funny.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Monday and Tuesday's activities

Well I guess I forgot to talk about my workouts for Monday and Tuesday. Bad me.

Monday I "did yoga". The only on-demand video I found that was long enough that I thought it would be a decent workout was WAY too advanced for me with my zero upper body strength and even less balance. It was definitely a good workout (I'm still sore in places!), and I only managed to get through maybe 8 or 9 minutes of it! I'd get back into it after lying face-down on my mat in total exhaustion for a few seconds, but I didn't make it very long each time. lol. So I think I'll start doing that on Mondays and try to get better at it.

Yesterday morning was the start of what I think will remain Interval Tuesdays. My watch was set for 7 intervals of 400m (1/4mi) with a .35mi rest between, I guess from the last time i did intervals. I dropped the rest down to .15mi for a good challenge, and I had an awesome time. There was a bit of a break in humidity (I could use a regular drinking straw to breathe, as opposed to those giant ones they give you with really thick milkshakes), and I felt great. I managed to do all 7 without extending the rest portions, and my average time for the run segments was about 9-9:05/mi. I love intervals. :)

And I think I'm going to start blogging my food for accountability's sake. So let's see... Yesterday:
Breakfast: 1 packet apple cinammon oatmeal, small glass of OJ
Snack: 11 o'clock chocolate break -- 1 piece dove dark chocolate (hey, it's good for my heart!)
Lunch: 6" ham sub on wheat with lots of veggies and no sauce/mayo, a banana
Snack: slice of cheese while cooking dinner
Dinner: Italian sausage delight -- hot italian sausage, bell peppers, and pasta, mixed with a squirt of italian dressing.
Snack: scoop of low fat ice cream. I'm menstrual. Back off. ;)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The softer side of Clanceford P. Cuteface


Let it never be said that Clancy doesn't have a soft side. Here he is spooning his mistress, Madame Piggy. And no, this was not a result of human interference. He likes to cuddle with his toys. teehee

Monday, July 20, 2009

7 Things

Beth tagged me in her blog to complete the task of posting 7 random things. I'm not sure if they'll be NEW things, but I'll try! :)
1. I used to hate the easter bunny because our dog ran away the night before easter, and my dad thought that telling us that he went to go help the easter bunny would soften the blow.
2. I was born in Brooklyn.
3. I love roller coasters, but haven't been to a roller-coaster-heavy theme park in a loooong time.
4. I recently named our two Oscars (fish) Milo and Otis. Otis is a bully.
5. Every morning, I check the perimiter of our back screened-in porch to make sure no frogs or lizards have wandered in under the door accidentally. My husband thinks I'm nuts, but the frogs die in a day of the hot sun with no protection, and the lizards will eventually starve. How could I leave them??
6. A few things I've never done but want to: kayak, jump on a trampoline, bungee jump, skydive, travel the world
7. I AM going to run the Disney half marathon in less than 11min/mi.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Fun and Not So Fun

Life needs balance, right? Well I guess I got some this weekend...

Saturday was good. Woke up at 4:30a to head to Amelia Island for Dave's triathlon. He did a great job -- beat his best time for this distance by 20 minutes!! Met a few of the Hammerhead folks for a late breakfast at Johnny Angels (SO good!), and the idea was to go home and nap, but that didn't actually happen. Since Friday was Dave's birthday but we weren't able to go to dinner in light of the early morning, we had planned on going somewhere special on Saturday night. I had gotten some recommendations for new places we hadn't tried yet in town and at the beach, but we ended up going with somewhere out in Fernandina that we had been reminded of while driving home from the tri that morning. So at about 5:30 we hopped back in the car for a 50min drive to the Beech Street Grill. It's a gorgeous old building, built in 1885-89.. The food is good, the staff was amazing, and the prices were reasonable -- especially considering they actually gave a full meal. We've been a couple of places where a similarly-priced entree was less than half the size. So on my thin scientist wallet, I was pretty pleased. They even comped Dave's dessert because it was his birthday. I was hoping for a sombrero and a song, too, but I guess that's just the Jersey in me. ;)

Our original weekend plan included heading back home and to bed early, so that we could hit the road at 5 or 5:30 for a 4-5 mile run. But after being fattened up on yummy food, I was feeling so utterly exhausted that I couldn't fathom waking up in fewer than 10 hours. So we decided to live on the edge and go sans alarm clock for once, and push the run to the evening.

Got a lot done today.. Dave washed our cars, and I did my interior, washed my laundry, cleaned the kitchen... Ate our left-overs for dinner while catching up a bit on The Tour on tivo.. waited a couple of hours for digestion, and went out for the 4-5 miler. Officially I only needed to do 4 miles, but I wanted to try for 5. I knew by mile 1 that I wasn't going to be able to keep my 11min/mi pace for one more mile, let alone 4. So I decided to not worry about my pace, and suck it up and do 5 miles, no matter how long it took me. My lack of ability to breathe was beyond frustrating, and so while my legs (per usual) felt fine, I couldn't go any faster because I was on the verge of hyperventilating. And I'm not a nice person when I'm frustrated. Like, not at all nice. Like, I can't remember the last time I let rip a string of profanity quite so long. And we're still talking about maybe 1.25mi into the run here, folks. Ugh. I clung on for the five miles for what felt like five years of swimming. Pace was 11:52. I was at 10:44 last week for 4mi. Granted, it was in NJ, and granted I did give blood this week and I did flake a bit on my midweek runs... but it was completely demotivating to have a run like this just when I felt like I was making progress. I don't even care how fast I'm going - I just want to feel strong.

Oh, and at the triathlon, I also learned that there's a separate class of triathloners that are over a certain weight.... ... I am now 4lb over that weight. That made me a little bit sad. . . . But then I watched the half-ton teen (..again..), and comparatively, I'm doin all right. *snicker*

Friday, July 17, 2009

Win some, Lose Some

Happy birthday to my wonderful husband!! Hopefully he will enjoy my little gifty. I hate that I have zilch in the way of funds to get snazzy gifts, but.. such is life. We're going to try a new place for dinner tomorrow night, I think. That should be fun! And then Sunday after my long run, I think we're going to hang at the beach a bit and try the place that ships down stuff from Philly to make authentic cheesesteaks. We've been meaning to do that for ages, and I hope we're not disappointed. The atrocities that people in this region call "cheesesteaks" make me cringe!
Hope you enjoyed the picture of Clancy in his running gear. :) It's actually a dry-wick shirt, which makes me giggle (a) because it's ridiculous, and (b) because dogs don't sweat! lol He rocks it out, though, don't you think??
Weather and traffic killed my chance to run with Kate on Wednesday (she went by herself though! woohoo!), which may have been a good thing. And pure laziness killed my 3-3.5miler planned for Thursday morning. So, as punishment, I went last night at about 6:30. It was DREADFUL. I ran out of gas at just over a mile. I blame giving blood for that, but it probably has something to do with skipping my Monday run... And then I decided to turn it into an intervals workout, just to get something out of it. So I did 3x400 at about 8:40/mi, walking for 400m in between. I ended up averaging 12:20/mi, which is certainly slower than I planned, but I still got a good workout, so I'm not going to be too hard on myself. It was miserably hot and humid, and I was covered in sweat almost immediately. As an added bonus, there were clouds of gnats everywhere, and due to the aforementioned sweat, they STUCK to my skin. So gross. Needless to say, I was REALLY happy when I was back home.
Then this morning, I was NOT happy about getting out of bed. I was up later than I should've been, by no fault but my own. And apparently I forgot to turn off my garmin when I got home last night, so -- no pace reading. Poo. I knew roughly where we needed to go for 1.5mi, and we may actually have gone a smidge over, but Kate did awesome. Total rock star, even sprinted at the end. She's mostly over the whole 5am thing, so we're going to start just running together once/week, and she'll go solo twice a week. I just can't handle the sun in the evenings right now, unfortunately. It's probably for the best, since in 3-4 weeks I think I'll be doing enough mileage in my own training that I might not have the gas to go with her. So this should work out perfectly. And then when it cools down, we may be able to combine her runs and my runs on the same day, and I don't think it'll be much longer than that until we're at the same pace.
In other news -- I am completely wrapped up in the Tour de France. I'm a big Armstrong fan, more for his work for cancer fundraising than athleticism, but his triumphs are pretty amazing. And he's an amazing athlete to be giving these young guys a run for their money when he's 38 and has been out of cycling for 3 years. Today is supposed to be a big stage, so I'll be listening to the audio while I work this morning. It's a climb-heavy stage in the Alps, so Lance's team may do something fun/exciting. That would make my day.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pint shy of a full tank

I gave blood today! Hooray! I've been sucking down water like you wouldn't believe since then. I'm going for a run this evening (though recent weather reports seem to want to foil that plan...). What's that you say, you're not supposed to run after you give blood? Yeah, I know. But no one said I was smart. But I'll be running with Kate, so if I die, she can call someone. ::thumbs up::

Then tomorrow morning I need to do 3.5mi... run w/Kate Fri morning, and then cross-train on Fri evening (probably bosu!), and then (dun dun DUN) 5 miles on Saturday or Sunday.. probably Saturday morning. I'm ridiculously UNexcited about 5 miles. My two 4 milers were under the time goal of 11:00/mi (10:56/mi for #1 and 10:44/mi for #2 -- yeah Jersey weather!), but they didn't exactly feel like strong performances. Rather, I was on the verge of quitting for the last 2 miles, and near death for the last mile. My hope was that, at each mileage increase, I would feel ready for the challenge. I guess that's a little much to ask from myself considering my general lack of athleticism.

Hopefully I'll have the chance to put together a fun playlist on my ipod to keep me entertained at least. DJ Greg J will have to carry me through, yet again!

I had an amazing weekend in Jersey last weekend -- I went to my little-sister-from-another-mother's wedding and then spent the following day with my mom/dad, aunt/uncle, cousins/spouses, and cousins' kids. I haven't seen that whole crew since the wedding, which was almost a year and a half ago now. I got to play with 6 bundles of joy of various sizes, from 2 to 8 or 9, swim, hot-tub, and just generally soak up family time. I can't wait until we are back and closer to all of them. I have definitely started to make better friends down here, but between my family and my best friend and second family -- my heart is in Jersey. I cry just about every time I leave, though I can sometimes focus on the four-legged goofball waiting for me back in Jax.

Upcoming fun in my life:
7/17 Dave's bday
725 "Beach olypmics" - party for July bdays among Dave's triathlon friends
7/25-8/1 House/pet-sitting for my co-worker with 5 cats and 2 dogs
8/1 Family Photoshoot on the beach
8/15 Photoshoot w/Kylene
8/16 Photoshop Workshop for Professional Photographers (yeah.. it's like that. ;) )
9/12 Wedding shoot -- my first solo gig!


Testing posting via email.. Carry on.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Catching up, continued...

One more 5am run under the belt + shower + oatmeal + OJ. Not a bad start to the morning.

Okay so where did I leave off in my ramblings? Oh, half marathon training.

I am already signed up to do the Disney Half Marathon in early January, and barring any unforseen circumstances, I'll also be doing the Outback Half here in town on Thanksgiving Day. I am hereby putting my goals in writing... I want to do the Disney Half Marathon without walk breaks (aside from water) and at a pace of 11min/mi, which would put me across the finish line in 2 hours, 24 minutes and 1/10th of a second. I just read in Runners World that a woman who was 5 months pregnant ran a half in 2hours 2 minutes. She can bite me. And I mean that in the nicest way possible.

I guess I am technically almost 1/3 of the way through my training, since I ran 4mi on Sunday. It's not really 1/3 of the way when you consider that it started at 3 miles, though. :) I've finished three weeks out of.. 22? Something in that ballpark. So far I can tell that I need to do more cross-training and get more sleep. I can't imagine where in my day I could find the time for these things, though.

And speaking of time, yet again... It's time to make myself quasi-presentable and head to work. I can't even tell you how much I'd rather just crawl back into bed.

Monday, July 6, 2009

So, uh.. I guess it's been a while.. .. ..

There's been some talk on a message board that I frequent about blogs lately. Which made me remember something -- I HAVE ONE OF THOSE! Oh right!!

Okay, feeble attempt at catching up on the last five months:

Photography: Since February I've assisted with two weddings (one including a hike over to Tally which made for an excruciatingly long day, but was entirely worth it), done a solo engagement shoot for my best friend's sister back home (who is getting married on Friday!), along with an awesomely fun double trash-the-dress, and most recently, a maternity shoot (perhaps part one of two if I'm lucky!) with a nauseatingly adorable couple who happened to have gotten married on the same day that I did. In terms of equipment, I haven't bit into any new lenses, though I've been drooling. I have purchased wireless transmission hardware for my flash and a diffusion box, which allows for soft, off-camera light. This opens up a huge world of possibilities, since pictures are really nothing more than captured light. So the more control you have over the light, the more freedom you have to create images. . . . In theory. As I have freely stated, I am still a student in the early stages. I have passion and vision, but I still struggle with focusing those through my equipment into the product I had in mind. This has been especially true with my off-camera flash work. It's tricky and somewhat elusive at this point, and my opportunities to use it have thusfar been limited by time, heat, bugs, etc., so that I haven't really had the time/patience/subjects to make small adjustments and reshoot ad nauseum, which may be the only way for me to truly learn how each combination of settings translates into an image. I have a feeling my dog will have to suffer through some fun in the coming weeks!

Running: Well, seasons (I use the term loosely here, since we're talking about Florida..) have changed, and it's gone from winter's "crap this is uncomfortable" quickly to summer's "dear Jesus I can't breathe, and I think my vision is getting cloudy." Typically the local Gate River Run in March marks the end of my running "year," and like a confused bear, I hibernate until roughly September, when I emerge, cranky and out of shape, to consider the tortures of fall racing (another term used quite looseley, since we're talking about me...). I inevitably am miserable due to starting from ground zero, which just serves to remind me of the pains of running, not its joys. Last year I trained through the later part of the summer (I think I started training in late August), and my "achievements" were modest, but I did feel like I reached my goals, specifically running a 10K with no walk breaks.

This year, however, is a whole new ball game. The River Run was not the beginning of hibernation, but rather, regrouping. I focused on the couch-to-5K program that a friend had expressed interest in. While helping her by providing moral support and someone to make her feel guilty if she bailed on a run (never happened, for the record), this plan actually did a ton for my personal running. It forced me to get out there as the weather started to get warmer, but it also forced me to focus on consistency over shorter distances without particular emphasis on pace. Getting out there just to get out there. We did do a 5K last month, though the heat has just been brutal this year, so we've since extended the program with no specific date or race in mind. We're just slogging through the miles and getting stronger every day. What more can you ask for?? Oh, and we are now nocturnal. It was difficult to get used to, and I still struggle with it, but 5am running is the only way I can bear to continue. Even at that hour, the humidity is punishing, and the temperature is no picnic at usually 76-80 degrees. It may be a small reward, but it's worth the sacrifice!

In addition to that, I've started a somewhat willy-nilly half marathon training plan. It's roughly 2 times as long as the plan from which it was adapted. The reason for this is that the original plan, like most plans, has one week for each mile increase for long runs. So if your long run is 6 miles on week 4, it's 7 miles on week 5. And I know this is tried and true for many, but for me, it is tried and false, and several times over at that. So I will extend it so that I do each distance twice. Some argue that this will make me burnt out, because toward the end I will have been doing long runs for some time. And maybe they are right, and I will burn out. Or maybe I'll just get stronger. Only time will tell. And speaking of time -- if I'm going to be out the door at 5am, I had better hit the sack! I'll babble more tomorrow if I haven't forgotten this thing by then!