Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thankful Thursday!

Today I'm thankful for:

-Managing to get all the grocery shopping done, and unloaded from the car without getting rained on once!  I timed things right today!

-That the Steelers have a week 12 Bye (perfect timing!), and they only play one game outside their time zone!  Plus, there are several prime time games so I'll get to see them play a few times this season!  Thank you NFL!

-That Elisabeth at Running on E answered the 10 questions I posted yesterday (in the comments).  Go check out her blog and say HI!  

-Late afternoon naps in odd places that don't affect how easily she goes to bed! 

 Yesterday around 5 pm...woke up for dinner and then went to bed and was out by 7:30, slept until 7:00 this morning!  She loves her sleep! 

-The ability to laugh at myself and my A-typical runners body!

-That Sky is taking a nap today and I have a few moments of peace to blog, eat a very late lunch, and finish putting groceries away. 


What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Liebster Award!

Oh what fun!  I have been nominated for my first blog award by David @ !

Please check out David's blog as he shares his trail running and training adventures!  I'm not much of a trail runner myself, (I'm not saying that's the only kind of running he does, but since I've been reading that's what he has posted about), regardless this road runner enjoys reading about his adventures on the trails!

Award Rules:
-Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.
-Link back to the blogger who awarded you.
-Answer the 10 questions from the nominee.
-Copy and past the award to your blog.
-Nominate 10 of your favorite blogs.
-Create 10 questions for the new nominees.
-Inform them of their nomination.

Here is what David asked me:

1.  Why did you start blogging?
Well it really started as a way for me to share my life/adventures with friends and family that lived far and wide.  When I started I wasn't as much of a cook, nor was I runner, and I had zero plans to have a little one.  The blog has changed a lot over the years, and now it's a place fore me to still share my/our adventures, but to also post a zillion pictures of my tatter tot and talk about my love of running!  

2.  What is your main goal for 2014?
My main running goal is to PR all the distances I run, primarily focusing on the Half (have yet to find a road 10K, but am doing a trail 10K, so may count that is my PR, if I PR it).

3.  If you didn't have to worry about money, what would you spend your days doing? 
Making jewelry, wine tasting, reading books, working out, cooking new things every day!

4.  Do you prefer short and fast or long and slow?  (I mean running race distances, you dirty minded people).
Long and slow for sure.  So not a sprinter!

5.  Do you prefer working out in a gym or at home?
Since I don't currently have a gym membership I have to say at home.  Although I miss the cross fit and zumba classes very much!

6.  What sports, athletes, teams do you follow?
I love all sports!  But, my first true sports love is Football!  I'll watch HS, College, Pro, whatever I can find.  I have always been a Steelers fan (makes me popular in WA!), but my Dad's cousin played for them in the 70's so it's a family thing that I grew up with.  I also love college basketball and have been a Duke fan since HS.  NBA is ok, but I really only watch if the Trailblazers are playing, which they are tonight in the playoffs!  Biggest reason we even still have cable is because I just can't live without my sports!  ESPN is on a lot in this house!

Not much of an individual athlete follower...just not all that star struck by anyone famous (other than Steven Tyler...don't even get me started).

7.  Where did you grow up and what is that area known for?
Castle Rock, WA and it's known for Mt. St. Helens.

8.  Are you a dog person or cat person, and why?
100% a dog person, mostly because if house cats were big enough they would stalk us and eat us like lions.

9.  What is your favorite food?
Oh man this is a really hard one for me.  There is so much good food out there and I'm such an adventurous cook.  But, if you looked at the weekly meal plan you would find more Mexican food than anything else, so I guess I'll go with Mexican Food.  I do love Asian food though.  

10.  What makes you unique?
I actually like going to the dentist, I put apple cider or malt vinegar on my tortilla chips, I salt my apples/oranges/watermelon, I loved how brisk and curt NY was...I would be totally happy if I could go about my business and not have to have "pleasant" conversation with anyone...short quick interactions are totally my thing, I actually like running hills and crave the variation they offer...flat courses kill me, I rather despise putting on makeup and doing my hair, I'm a chronic "chain" breaker on FB/Twitter/Bloging (sorry!), I have a spreadsheet with over 300 books on it that I want to read...going to stop there before I share too much!  ;-)

Thank you again Captain Speedypants for the nomination this was fun!

Sine I really don't know who to nominate...anyone who would like to answer the following 10 questions (any or all of them) please do so in the comments, or on your own blog! 

1.  If you could go back in time and witness a single event in history, what would it be?
2.  What survival skill do you bring to the table in the event of a zombie apocalypse?
3.  What is the furthest you have traveled from home, and was it work or pleasure?
4.  How many languages do you speak and what are they?
5.  Do you sing along with the radio?
6.  All time favorite book, movie and TV show?
7.  What is your all time favorite cookbook? 
8.  If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
9.  What's the one food/dish you have never tried, but want to?
10. What is the number one most favorite race you've done and why?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My Personal Cheerleader

Happy Earth Day!  It is truly a beautiful morning in the PNW and we just had to get out and enjoy it! 

Since this may be the last sun we get for several days Sky and I headed out for a run.  It had been almost a week since my last run and I was so ready to get out and stretch my legs!  I needed the break though.  I now feel ready to run, ready for the next few races, and ready for the next training cycle to start!  All the inspiration from Boston yesterday helped as well!  

Snacks, sunglasses, books, Daisy Duck...Sky is ready for a run! 
It's been a long, long time since I ran with Sky on our own.  The Stroller Group runs are always a pretty easy pace (that doesn't mean they feel easy though), but when it's just the two of us I like to push the pace.  I figure if I can get within 20 to 30 seconds of race pace while pushing the stroller then race day will feel super easy.

It felt hard, I haven't put effort into a sub 10 with the stroller in a long time, but I did it.  Average was 9:32 (or close to it, I forget exactly).  That's pretty decent.  I noticed it felt way harder after this last training cycle than it felt back before Whidbey.  But that was months ago and I know Sky has grown since then, it's just going to keep getting harder and harder the bigger she gets.

 She loves the reverse camera option on my phone!

Thankfully Sky is the best cheerleader ever!  She's usually pretty quiet in the stroller, but today she wanted the the sun shade and screen left open and she was yelling her head off. 

All I heard the whole 3 miles:
"Faster mommy, faster"
"Come on Mommy you can do it"
"Bump, be careful, don't hurt me"
"Watch where you're going"
"Don't hurt yourself"
...and the best part was when I hit the one short yet steep hill "Go mommy, go, you can do it", and as soon as we got to the top, "Mommy you did it, good job"! 

Every time she told me to go faster I let her know I was already going as fast as I could and her response every single time was "No!  You go faster".  Seriously better than any running coach!

After that it was time to play and let Sky run around the soccer field.  I offered to drive down to the playground, but she said no.  She really just wanted to run around the fields.

 Loves the breeze on her face!

 Reading the Cherry Tree sign to herself.  This picture doesn't even come close to showing off the pink and white dogwood trees.  So pretty!

 You can see Sky in the upper left of the pic, the white smudge between the two trees.  We were the only ones on the soccer fields and she loves seeing how far she can get from me before I run after her.  

I was feeling kinda blah/irritated this morning, no reason really, couldn't put my finger on it.  Figured a run in the sun would fix it, and I did feel better.  But, the tipping point was the labyrinth.  Just being calm, following a path that's already there, and not having to think about anything calmed my heart and cleared my mind.  

Lovely way to start the day and get myself back on track.  Looking forward to whatever the rest of the day brings!  

Who watched the Boston coverage yesterday?
It's why I didn't post yesterday, all I did really was watch the marathon coverage and track my friends who were running, and that makes for a boring ass blog post!  BTW - Amy finished and beat her time from last year!  

How do you reset your mind/attitude when you need an adjustment?
Aside from running I also like a glass of wine and my book, even for just 20 minutes.  Always makes me feel better. 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Big 2015 Racing News!!!!!!!!!

Oh my goodness I'm so, so, so, so excited to share my news...but first...

I hope everyone had a lovely Easter!  No matter what you believe, or how you celebrate/recognize the day I hope it was happy. 

We spent the morning re-hanging our pictures/decorations.  We packed up a lot of stuff thinking we may list our house, and so we could finish painting the rooms that needed it, but since we are staying put it was time to unpack the last box!  I'm not allowed to hang things on the walls, for good reason, I'm the queen of crooked, but I guess Sky isn't...
Helping Daddy create the family/friends only wall.  Meaning no prints/art work only pics of family and friends and our adventures.

 "Yo, whazz up"?  That hat is entirely too much, but she picked it out herself and loves it!

After a morning of hanging pics and cooking we headed to the parents to spend Easter with Mark's family.  
She's saying "Happy Easter, Hi Grandpa"!

Fun times, Sky loved hunting for Easter Eggs, but didn't much care about what was in them.  Yummy food, and lovely company!  Ever so grateful for the sun and warmth today!   Ton's more pics on Mark's camera, which got left behind

Ok I can't wait any longer...there is a pretty exciting (to me anyway) update on the Race Bucket List page, but I won't make you click on it to find out what it is... 

Santa Barbara Wine Country Half May I come, and Michelle too!!!  

The only, only way this race would be possible is if we could stay with my SIL who lives in SB.  I connected with her this weekend, and she is more than happy to let us couch surf for a few days! Thankfully I have enough airline miles to get me there and back, so now I'm saving pennies for registration, which is pricey, but going to be totally worth it...WINE tasting, oh and running a beautiful half!  

I am so excited!!!!!!  Plus, it's close to my b-day, so it will be the perfect way to celebrate 40!  

Ok, I'm totally a for real runner...wanting to race instead of party for my 40th!?!?!  I remember the day's when I used to say, "I'll never run/be a runner".  Jokes on me!


Anyone run the Santa Barbara Wine Country Half?  Any Feedback/heads up?

Who else is getting up early tomorrow to watch the Boston Marathon coverage?
I have Amy's bib number, and have several other peeps running, so I'm getting up to watch/track what I can!

How far out do you plan your race schedule?  
I'm always looking about a year ahead, the only way I can afford to keep racing on a single income is to get the best price possible, which almost always means opening day registration.



Thursday, April 17, 2014

Thankful Thursday

I try really hard to have one day a week that Sky and I get to stay home and just be.  We may stay in PJ's all day and skip brushing our hair, or we may go play at the park or get coffee and a scone.  Regardless of what we do it's always unplanned and usually ends up being my favorite day of the week.

Today I'm thankful for the little moments of heart melting joy that result from slowing down and being in the moment with my tater tot.

We laid on the bed and talked and cuddled for over an hour.  We talked about how much fun preschool is going to be, that she gets to fly on a plane in a few weeks, and we examined all the lovely colors and squares on the quilt.  

 You can see her head sticking out of the covers in the top right of the photo.

We played a bit too.  She loves hiding under the blankets and pretending she's asleep, then we rolled around a bit and wrestled and worked up an appetite for crackers and apples.  

 Blurry, but we were rolling around.

I know that in about 10 years (give or take 9 years) the last thing she'll want to do is lay in bed and talk about life with me, so I'll take every second of it I can get now!


How was your Thursday?  

Tell me one thing  you're thankful for today!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

CW-X Stabilyx Tights Review

I am so excited to share my review of the CW-X Tights I was given to test out!  I have been CW-X curious for a long time.  But, I've never pulled the trigger and tried them.  So, when the Fleet Feet Tacoma store manager offered me, on behalf of the CW-X rep, a free pair to try I was over the top excited! 

For the record the only commitment I made was to try them and report back to the store my thoughts.  The rep (don't even know their name) didn't even know I had a blog, there were zero requests that I post here or anywhere else about the tights.  I'm choosing to do so because I love them, and want people to know they are worth every single penny, more actually!  
  How cool are these?!  Love all the color!

I highly, highly, highly encourage you to check out the CW-X site as there is a ton of really great info regarding compression/conditioning wear in general, and CW-X specifically.  
I was given the CW-X 3/4 Length Stabilyx tights which retail at $90.00.  The technical info from the tag (booklet really): 

Featuring the latest new patented Support Web design, the Stabilyx Tight provides optimum Targeted Support to both the lower back/core area and the knee joint and surrounding muscles for greater overall stability and power.  

CW-X features two extraordinary fibers: Coolmax and Lycra.  Coolmax moves moisture instantaneously from the body to the fabric's outer surface where it evaporates at twice the speed of cotton.  Lycra possesses the unique ability to stretch yet retain its shape. 

The Support Web: 
-Acts as an exoskeleton to provide extra core support
-Stabilizes the knee joint
-Supports quadriceps muscles
-Improves movement efficiency and precision
-Engages hamstring and calf muscles
-Reduces muscle fatigue

 Yep, I wear them with my compression socks, laugh if you must.

First, keep in mind that anything over 8 miles is hard for me.  I run 3 times a week, and a 10 mile week is average.  Half training spikes that, but lets just say running is not kind to my body...I really have to work at it, and ice baths are a must for anything 8 to 10 or over, or I hurt and gimp around for a few days.
All those tracks between the color stripes is the most amazing support ever!

I did a 6, 12, 10, 8 and several 3 to 5 mile runs in these bad boys and have washed them a ton.  I also wore them after the Whidbey Island Half as a recovery tool since it's billed as in-run support, or recovery support.  I wanted to experience both so I could give a complete review!  I also refused to read anything about them before running in them so I cold be sure of forming my own opinion.  

 Ok, I did read the directions to put them on...holy compression...I realized I had no idea how to put my pants on without directions!

The first run I did was a 6 mile run and I was so pleased with how easy the normally really hard hill felt.  It's a loop I run regularly and dread one hill in specific.  But, this time it felt like the tights were doing the running for me and I floated up that hill! 
Rear really does compress everything!

The real test came on the 12 and 10 mile runs and let me say that I was not disappointed.  Not a single ice bath was needed after my two longest runs, and that is amazing let me tell you.  Nothing hurt after those runs, legs, joints, knees, hips...everything felt really great.  My legs were tired after the longer runs, but not sore.  I was able to play with Sky and not gimp around like I have in the past.  It usually takes a few days to get back to normal, but these tights took it down to a few hours...specifically the hours I was running.  Once I peeled them off I showered, and was ready to be all-in mommy.  AMAZING!!!

I've always wondered if CW-X would help give support to my bad knee (dislocated it in HS and had surgery...bothers me on and off ever since) and make it feel stronger during long runs, and you know what my bad knee didn't hurt at all wearing the CW-X tights!  More importantly my knee felt protected.  

It really does feel like the tights are moving my legs for me.  They also have a higher waist line so it holds the core/tummy in nice and tight.  I really like that feature since I don't like feeling anything jiggle while running.  It's kind of like everything from my waist to knee's are being hugged and held firmly in place.

    Recovering after Whidbey Island.

I wanted to test them out as a recovery tool (I ran in a skirt for usual race uniform) and changed into them after finishing the Whidbey Half.  My hips were jacked after that one due to the slanted roads.  I was so uncomfortable, but once I changed into the tights my hips stopped hurting, they liked the being hugged feeling!  I wore them for 4'ish hours, and while I think they helped I was still pretty sore after that race.  I think they work much better worn during a run rather than after.  

While I love these tights and am a totally believer/will spend every penny that comes my way on CW-X tights/shorts, there is one thing I don't love.  

The lack of a zipper pocket.  There is one small pocket on the inside of the front band, but it would maybe fit my key, and with the compression being so tight I don't want key imprint.  I get that a zipper pocket would maybe interfere with the compression ability, but it's a little frustrating to have to run with a belt (I love my belt, but hate wearing a belt period) just to accommodate my ID, Key and chap-stick.

But, even with the lack of a zipper pocket I'm a fan and convert.  I absolutely love everything about CW-X!  Can't wait to get a pair of full length tights (next winter maybe) so I have compression for my shins!   

A BIG thank you to CW-X for giving me a pair of really cool colorful tights to test out!  A BIG thank you as well to Angela at Fleet Feet for thinking of me as a test subject!  I feel spoiled and blessed all at the same time!  

P.S. - They wash and hang dry perfectly!  No funny smells or signs of wear or tear.  


Anyone else out there a CW-X fan?