Saturday, August 20, 2011

I'm A Rock Star!

This morning's run, 8.08 miles, 1 hr 34 minutes, best pace's the important part:  AVERAGE PACE 11:45!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I broke a 12 minute mile!  And not just for a short run, but an 8 mile run! 

I totally rock.

And now for a little celebration:


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Whooo Hooo!

Tonight's run felt so good! 

I don't know if it was because HH is back from vacation and I got to chat with her, haven't seen her in so long and there was soooo much to catch up on.  Was so distracted with the conversation that I didn't even notice my surroundings, very unusual for me I'm such a lookie loo.

Or could it be that after doing Tuesday's Summit Run, this one felt so great cause it's a nice flat course?

Or possibly after Wednesday's Hot Yoga I am now immune to the heat and if it's only in the 80's it doesn't feel so hot anymore?

Or could it be the cold MuscleMilk that I drank immediately after the run, thanks to the MuscleMilk girls who drove up in a MuscleMilk delivery vehicle and passed it out before our run?

Or possibly all the stars came into alignment and produced a perfect window of time.

Whatever it was, felt good and strong.

4.55 miles down, 930.41 to go.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

It's Gettin Hot In Her'e

Thing #20, took a Bikram Yoga class....aka Hot Yoga.

How hot was it?  I don't even know, but at one point I believe she said "it's going to get hotter in here".  Was a little difficult for me to understand all of what was being said. I don't know if this was because the sound seemed to echo in the room and she seemed to be shouting at times, or if the heat was affecting my brain. I don't think I have ever sweated so much.  I did take her suggestion to newcomers "If you feel too hot just rest for a pose or two",  Heck yeah, I'm gonna rest, so that my sweaty body doesn't slap the floor when I pass out.

The heat and humidity really does help with the flexibility, I was definitely able to twist various body parts that I can't normally do.  Although the sweating that it produces also makes it practically impossible to keep a hold onto your foot, elbow, whatever.

During the "cool down" she slightly cracked the door open and I was so thankful to feel just the slightest bit of cool fresh air creeping in.  My clothing was completely drenched by the end of the class, and I swear, either the interior of my ears were sweating or sweat had dripped down into them cause they were full of sweat as I was leaving the class.

I will definitely try it again, but no way am I stepping foot in that locker room, that's gotta be a hotbed of germs in there.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I am so cheap.

Today I FINALLY had my appointment with my oncologist.  I was supposed to see him 4 months after my last appointment in March, but his office called me and postponed my appointment, twice.  My head tells me that seeing him a month and a half later than he had originally wanted to see me doesn't really matter.  But then the panicky other side of me says what if something is wrong then I won't know for a month and a half longer. 

Every little ache and pain is cancer.  If I have a headache it's in my brain.  If I cough it's in my lungs.  If I have a backache it's in my bones.  I think most people who have had a cancer diagnosis experience this, it's called "canceritis".

First thing Dr. asks as he walks in the room is "Does 50 feel any different?"  Ah, brownie points for him, he actually looked at my chart, must have made a note in March, I had told him at that time that I was running a mile a day everyday till my birthday.  So of course I told him about the parade.  He was very impressed.  Of course all this small talk has distracted me and I end up forgetting to ask all my questions darn it.

Although when he asked if I was having any problems I did remember to tell him that I had been experiencing stabbing pains on my right side at the ribs....told him of course my first thought was "could it be cancer in my liver?, but it's probably more like gallbladder".  He asked if I had any gallbladder disease in the past.....or was that my own diagnosis (he didn't actually say it like that, but that was the jest of it).  I always self diagnose.  And I had eaten a Philly cheese steak sandwich at Hooters a couple of days ago and I figure it was just too much yuk for my gallbladder.  (I didn't tell him about the meal at Hooters....) 

Why the heck was I eating at Hooters?  Two of my nephews had birthdays and that's where they wanted to celebrate.  And the Philly cheese steak....not so good.  I think everything on the menu is over 1,000 calories each, and full of cholesterol and wonder my gallbladder or liver, or whatever it is had protested.

I don't really think it's cancer, but the Dr. is very thorough and routinely runs labs.  He said he will call me on Thursday and let me know the results, but that he doesn't expect anything to be out of line.  He will get more brownie points if I actually get a phone call on Thursday, but I'm not going to expect it.  I figure I will not get the results of Tuesday's blood until 4 months from now at my next appointment, assuming they do not reschedule that one.....right smack in the middle of holiday season, between Thanksgiving and Christmas.....

As I'm leaving the parking lot, I pull up to the little booth and hand my ticket to the attendant.  He's a young guy, shaggy blond hair, looks like a surfer dude, sporting those geeky thick rimmed glasses that are so popular with all the kids right now.  Not your usual parking attendant.  I must admit, I found it refreshing.  Until he says "That will be five dollars".  "FIVE DOLLARS!?"  (here the written word is completely inept at conveying the incredulousness in my voice).  "Wow, that is a lot, I wasn't even here an hour!"  He looks at his screen, "hmmmm, says 14 hours and 45 minutes, that's weird".  Actually it's not weird.  "Oops, I gave you the wrong ticket, I was here last night but the booth was closed when I left". 

Once a month I attend a "Relaxation and Visualization" class at this same location. It is supposed to teach me how to reduce the effect of stressors on my body.  Would probably be better if I actually practiced what I learn, instead I experience stress at the beginning of every class when the facilitator asks "how has your month been", and I have to confess that I have yet again failed to practice what he's preaching.  There are usually just 2 or 3 of us who attend regularly, with an occasional new person.  Not only are we learning relaxation techniques (I actually dosed off twice last night), it sometimes takes on the characteristics of a group therapy session.  Take last night, first we got in a relaxed state (accomplished with a series of deep breathing and then consciously relaxing various body parts until we are completely relaxed) then he gave us positive affirmations to boost self esteem.  Suggestions like "I am fine just the way I am", stuff like that.  After each exercise we go around the room and share how our experience was for the particular exercise.  Each one of us shared how it took us awhile to stop the mind chatter, all three of us had experienced episodes recently where we had felt judged by others, and had difficulty getting past the reliving of those experiences to the believing of the affirmations.  Geeze, what a mess we all are I thought, and had visions of Bob Newhart and his band of crazies.....surely we're not that bad, right?

I found the correct ticket and gave it to surfer dude  New price was $1, now that felt like a bargain.  And I only experienced a tiny bit of stress wondering if he was going to try to make me pay for the 12 hours I technically was not parked there.  No problem, he threw that one away.  Dude, Cool.

And for miles......ran "The Summit Run" tonight 5.27 stress relieving hard miles, 934.96 to go.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A New Trail Run

I was looking forward to today's run for several reasons.  One, I like trail runs (even if they kick my butt).  Two, I like the adventure of running at a new place.  Three, we were having a Pot Luck Brunch after the run!  Winning!

We all met at Scott's house and ran Carbon Canyon/Chino Hills State Park.  The early crowd met at 6:30am (please note I arrived at 6:25am), we were the 10 mile group.  The later crowd was to arrive at 7am, and they were running 7 miles.

Scott led the way (well at my pace practically everyone leads the way).  Since this was a new run for us, he had powdered chalk in hand and was to mark the route.  I think he had a defective bottle of chalk...he ran out of chalk after like 3 or 4 arrows.  At one point we saw the empty bottle on the ground pointing in the direction we were to go.  Then the clues started to get a little cryptic.  We began finding arrows on the ground made from sticks.  Had Scott lured us to this new trail run with the promise of a pot luck (he must know we will do anything if there is the prospect of food at the end), or is he really trying to rope us into some kind of weird Blair Witch Project? (insert heavy breathing, snotty nose, and hand held camcorder).

Along the trail we saw SO MANY BUNNIES!  I figured they must not have any predators, Helen said "They breed a lot".  I'm so lame.  Maybe some rouge bunnies or mountain lions are leaving the stick arrows on the path, trying to lure us into their little bunny dens or worse mountain lion dens where they will attack us.  Damn wild bunnies! 

Margaret had hung back with Missy, Helen, and I to chat.  It's a good thing we had Margaret with us.  Yes, Margaret the directionally challenged can't find her way around the block Margaret.  She actually knew this trail!  Unbelievable!  She knew every turn and which way to go at each fork in the trail.  I still can't believe we trusted her. 

Now normally I would be secretly hoping Margaret would get tired of doing our short little run/walk intervals and sprint ahead of us, cause I always feel a little pressure to perform better when I'm running with her.  (OK, I'll admit it, I feel like a slacker with her next to me).  But not this time, well I did feel a little like a slacker, but that was easily remedied by the fact that I knew without her I was at the mercy of those beastly bunnies.

Three and a half miles into the run we come across a stick arrow pointing back into the direction we've come from.  Huh?  Those bunnies are so tricky.  Maybe Margaret doesn't really know the way.  Nah, she knows this trail by heart, that arrow is for the 7 mile group, that's their turn around arrow.  Smart thinking Scott.

We ran another mile or so, crossed 3 little creeks (I was wondering what those bunnies were drinking), and then came to a larger creek, decided that was a good turn around point for us.  Ran back to Scott's house for a total of 9.33 miles.  Everyone removed their dirty shoes and washed the trail dust off their feet, and then we had an amazing brunch.  Waffles, quiche, bacon, smoked samon, muffins, bagels, fruit, banana bread, mimosas, and so much more, what a treat, great way to start a weekend. 

9.33 miles down, 940.23 to go.

Thing #19, Ran Carbon Canyon Trail Run.

I would never knowingly commit a felony.

Driving home from a friend's home the other evening my headlights shone on a patio table, 4 chairs, 2 bikes, and a garden hose caddy placed on the curb.  There was a free sign taped to the table.  Hmmmm, I thought..... I bet one of the boys would like a bike.  So I pull over and check them out, not an easy task in the dark.  Of course the tires were flat, but the brakes seemed fine. 

Before I could put the darn thing in my trunk I had to relocate all the crap, junk, random stuff that I've had knocking around in there for months. Everything always takes so much more effort than you think it will initially.  I chose the bike with the better brakes and with a little man handling (or woman handling in my case) I was able to wrestle it into the trunk.  Unfortunately the front wheel and the handlebars stuck out.  But as luck would have it, the stuff that's been in the trunk came in handy.  Found stuff to put under handle bars so they wouldn't scratch the bumper, and even had a piece of rope to tye the trunk lid down.   (Days later I found out the wheels are "quick release" and I could have easily removed them and it would have fit fine in there)

I know nothing about bikes.  I know how to ride one, and that there are mountain bikes, and road bikes, and a company named Schwinn makes bikes.  That is the extend of my bike knowledge. 

I came home, wrestled the bike out of the trunk, inspected it a little more in the dim light of the garage.  It didn't look bad at all.  No rust, barely any scratches, just a couple of flat tires. 

I told Denny about my find.  Asked him if he'd ever heard of "Trek Navigator".  He did a google search and discovered Trek Navigator mountain bikes on Craigs List original price over $400 selling for over $200 used.  Hmmmm......maybe I should go get the other one.....  I was thinking of Anthony when I was stuffing it in my trunk, but maybe I'd like to have one for myself, or maybe one of my other nephews would like one.

Tried to talk Denny into going back with me to get the other one.  He would have nothing to do with it.  Said he wasn't going to steal bikes with me.

The second bike was much more difficult to get into the trunk.  Turns out it was larger than the first.  Which made it a little heavier, and much more awkward.  Dammit, why did I come back for it?  And after Denny and Katie teased me that I had stolen the first bike I started to doubt myself.  Maybe these people had put the table and chairs out with the free sign (which were gone by now), and they had been riding their bikes and just dropped them there on the curb too.  Was Fullerton PD going to come driving up behind me blinding me with their search light asking me what I was up too?  I looked at the house, all the lights were out (by now it's like 10:30pm).  Am I stealing this bike I'm trying to jam into my trunk?  Have I already stolen one?  am I going to end up in jail?

Surely they meant these bikes were free.  Why would they leave bikes they wanted to keep on the curb with a bunch of other stuff that they've put a free sign on.  Also...why would they have been riding 2 bikes with 2 flat tires and dropped them on the curb.  I'm not stealing these bikes....really officer.

Finally managed to cram the big ass fricken bike into trunk dammit.  Geeze.

Took the bikes to bike shop, guy says they are in great shape, all they need are tires, adjustments, and gears lubed.  I also purchased a bike rack to put on the car since I'd decided to keep the smaller one for myself and it would be easier to transport it (this way I can continue to leave all the crap, junk, random stuff in my never know when rope is going to come in handy).  I hate to admit it, but I was a little leary when I went to pick the bikes up from the shop....wondered if maybe it was standard operating procedure (SOP) for them to run serial numbers on bikes brought in by people who claim to have found them on curb, wondered if maybe the police would be waiting for me.

Last Saturday we had our annual family beach bash at Bolsa Chica Beach.  I took the bikes with me.  Anthony, Adrian, and myself rode to dog beach, where we sat on a bench and enjoyed watching all the dogs play. 

Now to my 51 new things:

#16 Allegedly stole 2 bikes.
#17  Secured a bike rack to car and transported bikes....looking in the rear view mirror a ridiculous number of times to ensure that the bikes were still there.
#18 Rode bikes with 2 of my great nephews at the beach.

Now, final tally on actual cost of bikes:

Loading, transporting, and unloading bikes from "free" curb to home.  1.5 hours
Loading bikes and transporting to bike shop 1 hour.
Washing car so bike rack would not scratch it .75 hour.
Securing bike rack to car 1.75 hours
Cost of bike repairs $134.18
Cost of bike rack $119.63

5 hours and $ time I think I'll pass up that "free" sign on a curb.

Riding bikes at the beach with my nephews.......priceless.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Logging in the Miles

I had taken some time off work to enjoy the Napa trip.  Race was on Sunday, drive home was Monday, and I relaxed at home on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Tuesday evening was a regular running day with the group.  I figured I'd just do an easy run maybe 2 to 3 miles max. 

Because I had taken the day off work my time schedule was off and ended up arriving at the meeting place late(er than usual), 10 minutes late.  The group had already left, but I knew which route they were running (or thought I did) so I decided I'd go ahead and start running and cut it short so I would be finished at the same time as the group.

Running down State College I was thinking "This isn't so bad".  Wasn't nearly as hot as I thought it was going to be, and State College was nice and shady.  I kept looking ahead figuring that I'd see someone up ahead, but never did. 

And then it went from "This isn't so Bad" to "This sucks", as I started climbing the hill.  Started thinking I'd just get around the corner, cut through the park, get back on State College at Rolling Hills, run back to the store and wait for the group to arrive.

As I'm cutting through the park I see some runners coming towards me.  My Group!  How did they get behind me?  Shoot, now I'm caught.  I considered pretending I didn't see them and running right out of the park and sticking with my plan.  But that just made me feel creepy, so I met up with them and ran back....wishing I'd done the creepy thing, taken the short cut, and met them at the store instead.  Ended up running 4.36 miles.

Saturday was a fairly easy run with 5.12 miles was actually more, but my Garmin took it's sweet time connecting with the satellites so didn't register the beginning of the run.

Next run was Tues 7/26 with 4.36 miles.  My nephew Anthony joined us for this run.  Although he didn't run it, he rode a bike at the trail instead.

Thursday 7/28 (4.89 miles) we all met at a new location and ran a new route, so fun to mix it up!  A little bit into the run I realized I was running the same streets that I taught Tamara and Denny to drive on.  When they first got their permits, we would go to an industrial parking lot after work.  I'd let them drive around in the lots to practice accelerating, braking and turning.  Once they (and me) felt comfortable we'd get on the road, and just drive up and down the streets of this same neighborhood.  Every time we finished our "driver's training" sessions, I'd get out of the car a little older than I was when I had gotten into the car.  Needless to say I was hoping while I was running those streets on Thursday that no one was there teaching their teenager to drive.

Saturday 7/30 an 8.3 mile run.

Monday 8/1 a solo 3.63 mile run.  Since I'm going to Support Group rather than running Tuesday.  While I thoroughly enjoy running with my group, sometimes a solo run feels good too.
Brings the grand total to:


For a total of 30.66 added to previous 19.78 equals 50.44 with 949.56 to go.