Thursday, June 27, 2013

6 Days More

Hey friends. I've been in a bit of a dark place lately and that makes it hard to blog. In fact I've written 2 depressing and dramatic posts which I decided to sit on and see if they were still worth posting after the dust settled. They were not. So I apologize for the break BUT there will be yet another break coming up because in 6 days I'm headed to Peru! The Marathon Monster is in full effect and as part of my wishful thinking my running shoes are coming along from the ride. Regardless I will be getting some work in as we hike Macchu Picchu and I run around the Andes but how many people get to say they went for a run in Peru around ancient Native American ruins? I plan to be one of the few. Packing for South America is crazy by the way. Especially since it is now winter there, I don't speak Spanish or any dialect to be able to purchase what I forget, oh and because its South America! But I'm really excited about it today. There will be a lot to figure out and settle when I get back but I'll worry about that later. For now, it's the final countdown and I'm pumped!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

A Proposal Story and an Introduction to The Marathon Monster

Who is up for a two-fer! We've got a two in one today because I've obviously been slacking on the blog front and apparently there's a lot to talk about. So let's get started shall we?

Part One: A Proposal Story

I hear it's customary in our society to blog about your proposal if you're a blogger who happens to get engaged. So as not to be ousted from the community here you go. The Colonel knows me pretty well so he didn't bother with a lot of pomp and circumstance. I'd always told him I didn't even want a proposal. No fancy dinner, down on one knee, heartfelt awkward speech or any event/activity that cost too much money, involved other people or embarrassed me. At least I'm not specific right? I'm not much of a romantic. I'm so glad that he didn't get caught up in what he thought he was supposed to do and just made it real. Two Saturdays ago I had been at work all morning and came home hot, hungry, tired and incredibly grumpy. The Colonel sent me upstairs to take a nap because I'm sure he was rethinking this whole thing and an hour or so later I stumbled back downstairs awake enough but not really wanting to be up at all. He promptly went outside to his car as soon as I came down which was weird but not that weird since as you may or may not know, he is obsessed with his car. 

He came back in saying he had left his windows open and I accepted that. Still tired I settled in on the couch and asked him to hand me the iPad. When he did he added a "Take this too" and voila, there was a ring box. My first words, "What is this?" followed by opening the box and saying "How much did this cost?" As you can see, I'm quite the romantic. He asked me if that was a yes and I told him he hadn't actually asked anything. He laughed, I put it on and then proceeded to use the iPad...yep. It took me like a half hour to even call anyone. Not that I wasn't excited, I'm just not a gusher about this sort of stuff. So anyway, now you know the anti-climactic story :)

Part Two: The Marathon Monster

If I haven't mentioned it before, I'm running the Indianapolis Marathon on October 19 and it'll be my second full marathon although the first was a terrible experience and over 3 years ago. So it's kinda like my first all over again. The only difference is that now I'm aware of all those things no one tells you about that happen during training. Such as actual consideration of peeing yourself because you're too sore to want to go to the bathroom, calluses and blisters galore, some degree of constant hunger leading to the questioning (i.e. "You're eating again?" "Didn't you just eat something?"), and being able to fall asleep at any given moment in any given location. I'm so excited! Today one of my favorite lovely blogging ladies Swim Bike Mom is in the process of completing Ironman Coeur d'Alene and there's nothing like someone you "know" doing something amazing to really inspire you to do something yourself. I've been following her journey for months and can't believe it's actually here and I know it's wishful thinking but I hope I can give someone else that inspired, excited feeling that reading about her journey gave me. So off I go in my adventure and embrace The Marathon Monster. This morning I did my first "long" run of training and got through the 5 miles in 87 degree weather. That's a lie. It was only like 84...with 90% humidity. Welcome to the Ohio Valley. My new job keeps me on my feet and running around all day so my legs are already tired after a work day. Adding on running is going to be questionable but as our local professional triathlete Mike Hermanson who is also an emergency room RN once said, running on tired legs is the best training there is. On race day in a perfect world I'll be going out on rested light legs but by mile 16 I'll have to go 10.2 more on very tired ones so I might as well get ready now...right?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Loving the I-P-A-D

Hey friends! Im joining you from my borrowed iPad this evening! There is a resident at work who gets to use one in dialysis and insists on calling it an I-p-a-d saying each letter instead of by its Apple approved name. It is adorable. Since I typically try to keep things positive here in the vile I haven't been blogging much because I haven't been feeling particularly positive. Aside from the engagement not many good things have been happening so since I had almost nothing nice to say I took the oath of silence. If you aren't a close friend of mine who has had to hear my cries you should thank me. In the interest of positivity, here are 10 positive things I can think of right now:

1. Today was my day off and it was spent almost entirely on the couch.
2. I have jobs to have occasional days off from.
3. I'm still engaged and my ring is still pretty.
4. I'm already within 7 pounds of my end of summer weight loss goal.
5. I have a meeting with my top wedding venue Saturday and they still have the date I want open!
6. I've decided on a backup venue just in case.
7. I finally ran yesterday and it went pretty well.
8. I ate some of the best grapes ever this morning.
9. I'm using a freaking iPad!
10. My sweet, silly boy (cat) TJ is turning 13 tomorrow!!!

Lame post, yes. But a post nonetheless :)

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Since You've Been Gone

I guess a more appropriate title would be "Since I've Been Gone" but that isn't the name of a song by the great Kelly Clarkson. Anyway, how's it going? If it makes you feel better, I've not only been neglecting you lately but also pretty much everything that is considered social including the reading of other blogs and my beloved triathlon message boards. Let's not make this a habit shall we?

So let's do a quick fill you in. Last week I started a new job working in dietary at a long term care/rehab facility. I like it a lot so far but part time has become 4-5 days per week instead of the more traditional 2-4. I'm sure I won't be complaining once the paycheck rolls in tomorrow but for now, I'm tired. I also managed to workout Monday through Friday last week along with my significantly more physical job so this week I was feeling the exertion hangover. Friday night my cousin came in from New York and was staying with my mom so that sucked up a lot of my free time. Saturday I somehow managed to get engaged which was cool though overwhelming since EVERYONE wanted to talk to me about it. Sunday I worked my second job (always 2 days per week) and on Monday was back at it. Dietary Monday through Wednesday this week, in a half hour I have to leave for job 2, Friday it's back to dietary and Saturday is my first tri of the season. Shew. As if that wasn't enough, I'm also trying to get ready to leave for Peru next month, move in 2 ish months and now book some of the big wedding stuff since it'll be here and I'll know, there. I'll have more to say sometime soon but for now it's time to start my day...which started a couple hours ago.

What have you been up to?

Monday, June 3, 2013

Salute The Colonel

Today marks 3 years for me and The Colonel except that's kind of a made up date because 6 months in, we couldn't remember the exact day we became a couple so we just thought June 3rd sounded good. We don't have a great "and that's how we met" story other than we were both Kentuckians who happened upon each other in Dallas. From the start I'd been trying to lose him but haven't quite been able to shake him yet. The salesman that he is, we're not sure if we actually like each other still or if he just keeps selling us both on the idea of liking each other. Either way it's been working so far.

I'm not terribly sappy or good with words (wrote the blogger) when it comes to this sort of stuff. But I would like to say Thank You and I'm Sorry to my dear Colonel for various things because when you spend a lot of time with someone, especially if you plan to continue spending more time with them, you've got to learn to repeat those two phrases because in today's world they're never said enough.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Bernheim Trail Marathon Recap

Wait, what?! Trail? Marathon?! Another year, another Bernheim Trail Marathon and this time I wasn't going to miss it! So, those who can't do, volunteer! I've done some informal trail running and have always really liked it but have never done a trail race. In my world, the easiest way to check something out is to do it or in race terms volunteer at it. The threat of severe storms made me reconsider heading out at 6 am but I knew rain is no bother to the true trail runners so if they were going to be there, so was I. Autumn went with me even though she doesn't like trail running or nature but she was a good sport and came along so I could check things out.

We got there late for various reasons but luckily the storms delayed things just a bit and we ended up not missing anything. We were assigned to aid station 5 with another woman at what we were told was mile 16 of the full marathon.

Trail marathons are the real deal. During road races I think it's safe to say the stations have water and some kind of electrolyte replacement drink, maybe some oranges and/or bananas and probably some form of goo (Gu). At this race, our setup was legit. Gallons upon gallons of water and Heed, flat Coke and Sprite, peanut butter filled pretzels, Chips Ahoy mini chocolate chip cookies, oranges, bananas, peanut butter and jelly on the good whole grain bread, Hammer Nutrition goos, and salt tablets.

We set everything up including our fold out chairs and waited patiently for the first runner. We also had a sheet with the bib numbers of the runners and we were to mark down what time they came through as a way to keep track of everyone.

With my Deep Woods Off applied I was doing alright in the forest. It was gorgeous and stopped raining so sitting outside wasn't an issue...although I did have a poncho just in case. Finally we got our first runner. First impression was that he was more badass than any character Jason Statham has ever played (and I love Jason Statham). He was also surprisingly nice and looked completely chill. He chatted with us a bit while he refilled his bottles and had a few bites and then he was gone. Second place was over 3 minutes behind him but pretty much the same impression. They kept rolling in, one at a time, every few minutes until I saw an old friend I met in college about a hundred years ago. "Oh. Hey Evan!" He had that determination/misery/badassery/I'd kind of like to stop running and be finished now look that we found quite common in trail marathoners as the day wore on but was also perfectly nice, refilled his pack and off he went. I was surprised to only see 3 women out of the 36 total marathoners but they were hanging tough just like the men. Trail aid stations are so different because the runners really do stop to take a breather, consume some calories, stretch and throw away articles of clothing and ring out socks decimated by the multiple creek crossings and obstacles they'd already passed. The worst part of the whole day was having to tell people they were at Mile 16. About half of the runners had GPS watches which all said they were at Mile 18-19 and we had to be the messengers that in fact, they had 10 miles to go instead of the 8 they had convinced themselves they could do on the way to our station. *Did I mention we were located at the top of a particularly grueling hill? We of course didn't know this until people told us...which every one of them did. But that did make everyone really excited to see us! I also happened to see another guy I knew who is a board member for the organization I used to work for. I'd only ever seen him in a suit and tie so the wet and muddy shorts and tee, trail shoes and a backwards baseball cap was a little bizarre, but cool all at the same time. Even cooler when I informed him that I wasn't working and that this was just something I do because I got a new level of respect I think. Like maybe the real trail runners might consider opening the door to let me into the trail running club. Anyway, we only had one scary moment and that was the guy who looked us in the face and said, "I'm done." We asked the standard "How are you feeling?" and everyone was ok despite the occasional "I feel like shit." said with a laugh but when he said he was done we pulled up a chair for him. He was in his 50s and obviously in great shape but he told us he just knew when to call it, especially since we were Mile 16 and not 20. It was obvious how seasoned he was because he knew exactly why he was feeling that way and what could have been done differently and that he physically could not finish the race and was ok with it. We called a medic and Nurse Autumn sprung into action taking his pulse and such. Once he was sitting down with some water he just chatted with us and that was pretty cool. He also talked to lots of the runners who came through while we were waiting for his ride. The camaraderie made me jealous and that was when I decided for sure to join the trail running club.

All in all it was a blast and I can't wait to do my first trail race! There's something about volunteering that gives you a weird insight into worlds you want to enter but don't know how. I'm excited to have been there to help them and am looking forward to racing myself and having others return the favor.