Monthly Training Recap

I definitely did not do as well as I had planned on accomplishing some things this month as far as fitness, healthy eating and training are concerned.

Goal #1 - Workout everyday. I think I failed at this two days in. Now that the basketball season is in full swing, there are some days where I legitimately have no time for anything other than work and sleep. For December, my goal is to workout 5 days a week.

Goal #2 - Put any kind of distance into swimming, biking and running. Here is how I did:
Swim - 1100yd
Bike - 8.5mi (all on the stationary bike)
Run - 21.35mi
Not as much as I had hoped, but its a start. I have lots of room for improvement in December.
As far as non-triathlon related workouts, I put in 1 hours and 30 minutes of cross-training and 1 hour and 50 minutes of strength training.
My goal for December:
Swim 5000yd
Bike 40mi
Run 36mi
Strength 2hr 30min

Goal #3 - Lose 3.5lbs. Actual weight loss: 2.6lbs. Not bad considering Thanksgiving, and I guess the team eats McDonald's for pre-game meals on the road? Anyways, I digress. I also did not workout anywhere near as much as I wanted. I think if I work a little bit harder on both parts, I think 3.5lbs is realistic for December.

Ten For Tuesday: Late Again!

I don't have any ideas for a blog post for today, so I'm rewinding back to yesterday. I have done a lot of traveling in my day, and I was curious to know what are the 10 biggest cities that I have been to. Using and as my sources for population, here are the 10 biggest cities (by population) that I have been to in order of greatest population to smallest.

Note: This is actually visiting, not just flying/driving through.

1. New York City
New York City Skyline

2. London, UK

3. Paris, France

4. Chicago

5. Toronto, Canada

6. Washington DC

7. Detroit
Haha! Just kidding...

8. Minneapolis
Minneapolis Minnesota

9. Kiev, Ukraine

10. St. Louis

Bonus Point Question: What do all these cities have in common?

Hint: I picked out very specific pictures to help you with the answer.

Odd Thanksgivings

People tend to give thanks for obvious things, but here is a list of things I have forgotten to be thankful for that are a little less obvious:

1. Thankful that we lost the National Championship game. Could have been worse. We could have lost earlier.

2. Thankful that Game 6 of the World Series was a nightmare. How else would we remember the amazing run that was this year's St. Louis Cardinals?

3. Thankful that I didn't finish Rev3 Cedar Point. The biggest success was making it to the starting point and actually having the courage to do the race.

4. Thankful that I had to wait so long and go through so many job applications and interviews before finally getting a job. I love it here and I love my co-workers and my teams. Only thing that could make this any better would be if it were a hockey job.

5. Thankful that I'm not spending Thanksgiving with my family. Makes me appreciate the little time that I do get to spend with them so much more.

6. Thankful that my parents are getting a divorce, and not under hostile terms. At least I still have a good relationship with both of my parents and they are both alive and well.

7. Thankful that I get a flat tire in almost every triathlon that I do. I have gotten really good at changing flats under pressure.

8. Thankful that I have had to work with an under-staffed staff. It is giving me a lot more experience than I would get normally. Plus, its another bragging point or "challenge" that I can talk about in future interviews.

9. Thankful for this 6 hour bus ride. Two posts in one day, say what?!

Random Photos

I'm preparing this post now (Monday) for your viewing pleasure as you're near passing out from mass amounts of Turkey. Instead of making you read on a holiday, I'll just post a bunch of random photos I have taken recently.


Fall Outfit

View from our backyard

Our backyard

Stanley's first bath

Wet doggy

Thanksgiving dinner

Ten For Tuesday: Thanksgiving Foods

Hope you are all having a great Thanksgiving week! This week for Ten for Tuesday is a list of ten foods that we traditionally have for Thanksgiving. What other foods do you have for Thanksgiving? Any odd or different food traditions?

1. Mashed Potatoes
2. Rolls
3. Corn
4. Sweet Potato Souffle
5. Cranberry sauce/jelly
6. Stuffing
7. Beans or peas
8. Cheese and crackers
9. Pie
10. Turkey!!!


37 more days until Christmas!!! Not that anyone is counting...

...and I've already bought a few Christmas gifts for Stanley!!

Update on monthly goals: Well, my work out every day goal fell through rather early in the month, thanks to my crazy busy schedule. I've gotten better about it the past couple of days and, hopefully, I can keep it going through the remainder of the month. As of yesterday morning, I was down 1.4lbs. That would put me just shy of my goal for the month, but I haven't been eating as good as I had planned and, like I said earlier, I haven't worked out as much as I had planned either. Hopefully, correcting both of those for the rest of the month should at least get me close, even with Thanksgiving.

Update on my team: We had our first away game last night, and second official game of the season. We are now 2-0, winning both games pretty solidly. Keep it going, ladies!!

Update on personal life: If you haven't read it yet on Ben's blog, the bad news that I received a couple of weeks ago was that my parents are getting a divorce. It definitely came as a shock to me. On one hand, I'm glad that I have both of my parents and they're both healthy and well, but they always seemed so happy together and in love so it really came out of left field for me. We're still trying to decide what to do for Christmas. Go to Florida and possibly spend my last ever Christmas with both of my parents together? Or go to Michigan to Ben's parents' house where it will be less awkward?

Update on men's basketball: Eric Griffin (#21) had an average game last night...

My new running shoes are hot...

Note: This post was written last week, and I just now got a chance to upload photos.

Hot pink that is!!

I was in desperate need of new running shoes, so Ben and I hit up a sale at a local Tri store. They were having 30% off everything, plus we had a $30 Groupon ($40 for $100 running shoes!!). They watched my running gait on a treadmill. They took video and watched it waaaay slowed down. They found that my right side has a pretty normal gait pattern, but my left foot over pronates slightly (I had my suspicions). It actually explains a lot in regards to my running injuries. I get IT band pain and tightness in both knees, but only one at a time, so my left is likely due to the over-pronation and the right is probably compensating for my wonky left side. I also have chondromalacia, but only in my left knee. I have kinda given up on my chondromalacia. I have come to conclusion that it will probably never completely go away until I stop running entirely, but I want to do want I can to keep it minimally painful. Hopefully, my new shoes which are designed to correct my over-pronation will do that for me.

I went for my first run in them yesterday. They felt amaze balls, except for the toes in my right foot went numb like they do when I bike. Probably have my Yankz a little too tight. I didn't notice any IT band or knee pain, but I only ran 2.5miles and I have been taking it easy with my running recently to give my poor body a rest and time to heal.

I did, however, see a wild boar. It was chasing some dogs around. I figured if it was brave enough to chase dogs, it was probably brave enough to chase me, so I made a U-y and hightailed it outta there. Thus why my 3 mile run was cut short to 2.5 miles. That and it was 80 degrees yesterday...

Surviving the South

Last Wednesday, an event occured that I never thought would happen in my life, but especially not in Buies Creek, NC.

I was in the athletic training room at the basketball gym getting ready for practice. The football team was across the hall in the weight room lifting. The basketball coaches kept coming in asking me if I knew where the girls were. At that point, I hadn't seen any of them, and I thought it was sorta odd that each coach came in and asked. A couple minutes later, the football team moved from the weight room and into the hall and were talking quite loud. One of the volleyball girls who was in the ATR at the time, went out to ask what they were doing. When she came back in, she said, "There's a sniper on campus, so they have to stay away from the windows," but in a real non-chalant way.

The volleyball ATC and I thought she was joking because of the la-dee-da kinda way she said it, but the next time one of our coaches came by (again looking for the girls), I asked what was going on, when she confirmed that there was indeed a gunman on campus and the University was on lockdown. On the one hand, I was like, "Oh no, what should I do?" but on the other hand, the football team was between me and the door. There were a lot of huge guys a gunman would have to get through before he got to me, but I would hope to be long gone by then.

I texted my co-workers to make sure they were aware of the situation. I also texted Ben and my parents what was going on so they knew about it before finding out about it on the news and so they knew I was safe.

Despite the situation, the coaches decided to hold practice with the eight girls we had. It was interesting hearing the stories and rumors unfold through texts and social media. Really, where would we be without technology? How would we know about anything?

As it turned out, we were never in any real danger, but the police wanted to play it safe. The "gunman" was a student who lived in a house on campus. He was dishonorably discharged from the US Air Force for stealing $15,000 worth of weapons and ammunition. He also suffered from PTSD as a result of compat in the Middle East. On Tuesday, he had been arrested for stealing a gun from a gun shop (Don't gun shops run background checks? I mean, which gun shop hires someone who has stolen weapons from the US military?), but posted bail and was released that night. On Wednesday, the gun shop realized there were seven other guns missing (just realized this now?), so the cops went to his house with a warrant. They hand cuffed the guy, but he somehow managed to slip out of the handcuffs and baracaded himself in his bedroom which contained weapons and explosives. As a result, the police put the University on lockdown and had to call in the SWAT team. Three hours later, he surrendered peacefully and no one was hurt.

I never thought that I would ever find myself in a situation like this, especially the country! The University made the news that day, but Penn State stole our thunder by firing some coach or something like that and some other big wig. Please, Penn State, don't you get enough attention every Saturday?

espite the situation, we decided to go through with practice with the eight girls


I've seen a lot of "Sorry, I'm not sorry" blog posts floating around recently, so I've come up with my own "Sorry, I'm not sorry" confessions. It is actually topic based. They are thoughts that I have had while reading other blog posts, but have been too scared (or too nice) to share publicly. For the first time ever, I'm coming out with it. I feel a little more safe putting it on my own blog without targeting individual blogs.

Folks, sorry, but I'm not sorry for these thoughts:

1. If barefoot running is the all-natural way to run, how come no one is barefoot walking? And how come almost all barefoot runners that I know are almost always injured?

2. I heel strike, so deal with it.

3. Too many bloggers post about and give advice on topics they are unqualified to do. Anyone can Google "How to treat IT band tightness", but if your readers' IT bands are really that tight, they should see a healthcare professional. If anyone has a heart attack, they should still call 911 (courtesy of The Hangover...if you didn't get the reference).

4. There is no such thing as gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free, cholesterol-free, carb-free, calorie free cheesecake. And if there is (GROSS!!!), I wouldn't want to try it anyways, but thanks for sharing the recipe.

5. Proper grammar and spelling...use it. (there, their, they're, your, you're, etc.)

6. You haven't ran in 6 weeks due to a foot stress fracture, and you ran 4 miles Monday, 6 miles Tuesday, 3 miles Wednesday, 7 miles Thursday, crosstraining (30 mile bike ride) Friday, 12 miles Saturday, 5 miles Sunday...and your foot hurts again, and you're really truly confused as to why?

Do you have any blog pet peeves/thoughts that you're not sorry for?

Also, tomorrow (hopefully, I'll have time), I'll talk about the interesting day I had yesterday. Definitely, a once (again, hopefully) in a lifetime experience.

Ten For Tuesday: What Would I Buy?

I had to take two patients to the doctor today, and on our way, we saw a bumper sticker that made us giggle. "If I didn't own a horse, this would be a Ferrari." I don't know about you, but I would rather have a Ferrari than a horse. I know Ben would be shocked to hear that after I have been incessantly pestering him since we moved here to buy me a horse. But it gave me an idea of a Ten for Tuesday...If I had enough money to buy and care for a horse (let's say approximately $100,000 over the lifetime of the horse), what would I buy instead of the horse? I would buy a Ferrari, but I won't take that as its a freebie.

1. House
Not this one exactly, but you get the idea...
2. Boat
Free image of Sailing Boat

3. 1000 pairs of shoes at $100 each
4. 100 Louis Vuitton purses at $1000 each
5. 50 years of NHL season tickets @ $2000 per season
Also, how I would react if I had $100,000
6. Tiffany Jazz Necklace ($16,500), Tiffany bracelet ($2300), Tiffany Earrings ($30,000), Tiffany Ring ($8250) ...

...or maybe just this!

7. 20 week long trips to Europe at $5000 per week

8. Three years of tuition at Oxford University at $30,000 per year

9. One really amazing movie theater room in my house

10. 10,000 four packs of Guinness @ $10/pack

Long Weekend with a Pumpkin Ending

I have gone through a lot this weekend, both at work and in my personal life. Friday was a particularly long day because we had a scrimmage and I didn't get home until late. I came home to a very spastic dog. Ben was out of town for a triathlon so the poor dog was home alone all day (and apparently, that's the equivalent of giving a dog meth). I didn't get much sleep that night before I had to report to cover men's basketball practice Saturday morning. It was only supposed to be a two hour long practice, but it started a half hour late and went four hours instead.

To add even more stress to the weekend, my mom kept calling and texting me while I was at work Friday night. I don't like to take personal calls while I'm working, unless its potentially an emergency so I just told her I would call her back. I didn't get back till late so I figured I would call her after practice on Saturday, but she continued to text me. I thought this was particularly odd. She doesn't normally try this hard to get a hold of me. And if it is an emergency (like when my brother had his lung problems), she would just text me what was going on, but she wouldn't. I texted my sister to see if she had any idea what (if anything) was going on. She texted me back saying that she knew, but she wasn't allowed to tell me, but to give me fair warning, it wasn't good news. That was one hour into practice. Not only were those last three hours physically long (2 hour practice = marathon, 4 hour practice = 50 mile run...for those of you who need a reference), but they were emotionally long, trying to figure out what could possible be wrong. The worst case scenarios ran through my mind. Someone has cancer. Someone is in the hospital. My parents are broke. I was trying to figure out what could be so bad that she wouldn't just text me what it was. On one hand, I really wanted practice to end so I could find out what was going on. I wanted to get it over with. Like when people ask you, "Are you ready for school to start?" Well, no, but yes, because the sooner it starts the sooner its over. On the other hand, I didn't want to know. I wanted practice to last forever. If it lasted long enough, the bad news would just go away. Right?

I'm not sure if I'm allowed to or supposed to say publicly what is really going on, but the situation has me completely stressed and torn. Saturday was alright. Sunday was worse. I cleaned the house, baked two loaves of banana bread, and made pumpkin soup for dinner to take my mind off of it. Ben had the idea to play Christmas music while we cooked and cleaned (don't hate because we're almost two months early...our household pretty much revolves around Christmas. I'm so small and Christmasy, I'm a borderline elf.). It cheered me up for a little while, but then I started thinking about how Christmas and the holidays will never be the same after this news.

Anyways, I don't mean to be so much of a Debby Downer on Monday, but I had to get some of that off my chest. I didn't think to take pictures of the banana bread, because I feel like almost everybody has made it at some point. No need for me to talk about what we already know. The pumpkin soup was new for me. I got the recipe from the Food Network website and it was written by Alton Brown. I wasn't sure how it would come out, but I love pumpkin, so I figured it couldn't be too bad. Ben is not so much a fan of pumpkin, so he was pretty much terrified.

The soup is actually prepared and cooked inside a pie pumpkin...

...which makes it even more fun (and a little more challenging) to make.

I left out the onion (Ben doesn't like onions) and the thyme (we just didn't have any). The results...


It was a little more thick, and less soupy that I had thought. They were the consistancy of boxed mashed potatoes. But the taste was delightful. It wasn't overly pumpkiny (pro for Ben), but the garlic was a little overpowering. In the future, I would use half as much garlic. It also didn't make a whole lot of soup, but still took a long time to make (2 hours) like soup typically does. The effort is only worth it once in a while, or if you are making a bunch of pumpkins for leftovers. Ben and I only got a small bowl of soup each out of it, so I would probably make one pumpkin per person in the future. However, thanks to the cream and cheese, it was a heavier soup, so it was more filling than your typical brothy soup.

Note: In the typing of this blog post, I misspelled "pumpkin" like 20 times...kept leaving out the second 'p'. Who needs it anyways?

Sock It: Halloween

I know this is almost a week late, but I am obsessed with fun socks, particularly knee socks. Here are my spooky, glow in the dark feet warmers.  Hope everyone had a safe and fun Halloween!

Week in Review By Pictures

My Jack-o-lantern
Friday night without Benny

Saturday morning basketball practice...4 hour practice...le sigh...

Another NC First

This morning, I woke up to my first North Carolina round of this...

View of the frost from my work
The thermometer in the car also had its first snowflake. I'm not sure what it means, but I think it is to alert you when the temperature is below 40F. I kinda gathered as much during my brief, yet chilly walk to the car. I got to say, I really don't miss my 1 mile walks to work in Boston late fall/winter/early spring. I have a feeling this winter is going to be a lot more enjoyable in more ways than one.

I had strength training planned for yesterday, but that was cancelled due to having to cover men's basketball practice until 10PM last night. I did manage to get in some exercise by participating in a pick-up game of 21 with the basketball managers. My points total yesterday after exercising: 19, before exercise: 21.

November Goals

1. Workout every day, even if its just some body weight strength training at home. Although, I want to get back on the triathlon bandwagon and swim, bike or run everyday, even if that means getting up an hour earlier each morning to hit the pool. The World Series is over, and in two weeks, I won't have to help with men's basketball coverage any more, so I have no excuses.

2. I don't have any mileage or time goals for exercising, just doing something, ANYTHING! I am tracking my miles, so I can have mileage goals next month (obviously, more than this month).

3. I lost 18lbs. for our wedding in 2009, and since then, I have gained 8lbs back (with 5 of them being last year, and 3 this year). Now that I'm not in season for triathlons, I want to work on shedding those pesky pounds again. Weight Watchers worked for me for the wedding, so I'll stick with that again. To hold myself accountable, I'll post how many points I ate, how many I exercised off, and how many of the extra 35 points/week I used. For someone of my age, gender, weight, etc., my goal number of points per day is 21. My goal for the month is to lose 3.5lbs. (oh, hello Thanksgiving!).

4. Puppy goals: Get him potty trained. We take him outside frequently, and he has been pretty good about going when he's out there, but he still has the occassional indoor accident. And I don't think he completely understands yet that the reason we take him outside is for him to go potty. He just knows that he is allowed to go potty out there, but hasn't quite registered that he can't go inside and that he needs to let us know when to take him out, instead of us just taking him out every hour. I have been a picture fail recently, but hubby has been posting pictures on his blog. We have officially named him Stanley after the Stanley Cup.

Benson Healthy Harvest 5K

I am going to forgo Ten for Tuesday this week, but I have a good excuse. I promise. I wanted to and had planned on writing my race recap yesterday, but I had a semi-emergency at work.

On Saturday morning, Ben and I participated in the Benson Healthy Harvest 5K. We had heard of it only because we saw a sign on the freeway (definitely a first for me). Along with the 5K, the small city of Benson was hosting a one mile walk and a city bazaare, I guess you would call it. A bunch of local vendors came out and set up tables of their wares and sold them or gave out samples.

I didn't really have any expections for this race considering the minimal training I had put in for it. I was 6 weeks out from Cedar Point. I did not run or work out at all for the first three weeks, and I ran a grand total of 5 days the last three weeks and swam once. Thus concludes the extent of my training. I was merely hoping that I could average under 9 min/mile, which seemed completely doable considering I am a master of running in the cold. I felt like the 50 degrees and windy race day weather gave me an advantage over the North Carolina runners as that's practically summer time up North, and I run year round as long as the ground isn't too icy. The only thing I don't like about cold races is the pre-race. I want to wear enough clothes that I'm not completely frozen and stiff come race time, but I tend to heat up quickly once I start moving, so I don't want to have to strip off layers if I don't have to. I ended up wearing a long sleeve tech shirt, running tights (the thin variety, not the "to be worn in the dead of winter" variety) and running shorts on top. I wish I had brought my running gloves though. In solid 50 degree weather, they would have been fine, but in windy 50 degree weather, it took them about half the race to thaw out.

Ben and I picked up our packets that morning. Let me just say that I was not expecting much in that area either considering that we only paid $20 for the entry fee, but they totally blew us away. Ben got a tech t-shirt (they only had XXL by the time they got to me, so I passed on that considering that I have way too many tech shirts anyways). I sarcastically told Ben that its alright. I'll just win my prize. And we both got sweet potatoes (Yes, you read that right. They are kind of a big deal here in NC...and its harvest time to boot), sweet potato recipes, pens, a plastic cup, recovery drink powder samples, chap stick, anti-bacterial soap and a bunch of those usual ads you get like free chicken nuggets from Chik-fil-a and free oatmeal from McDonald's. Also for the entry fee, the race was chip timed and had a water station that was conveniently located so you passed it twice on the course.

The course was almost a straight out and back with a few in and out's  through neighborhoods to get the extra mileage in. The out portion of the run had a strong headwind. There were also a couple of rolling hills for an added challenge. For the first half mile, I was able to maintain just under 8min/mile. For the next 1 1/2 miles, I really struggled and was floating around between 9 and 9:30min/mile. As the front of the pack came back around, I tried to see how many seemed to be in my age group. It was hard to tell, but there were at least a couple. I decided in the last mile that I was going to try to pick them off. My first victim was a girl who was wearing sweat pant capris (complete with elastic drawstring on the bottom of the legs) and Converse-esque shoes. I still can't believe I let her be ahead of me for that long. I then picked off another girl who was pre-occupied with high-fiving her friends who were still on their way out. I didn't feel bad at all. This was a race and I was in it for all the beans.

I looked at my Garmin and saw I had a quarter mile left. Time to kick it into high gear. I started chasing down the next girl, using "Barefoot Guy" as my pacer (so sue me USATF). I could see the finish line ahead, but it didn't seem to be getting any closer. As I neared, my legs just died. I started my kick way too soon and "Barefoot Guy" and the girl with the green shirt beat me. According to my Garmin, the race was a tenth of a mile long. Had I started my kick a tenth of a mile later, I probably would have been fine.

The awards were (supposedly) not until 1PM (the race had started at 11AM), so Ben and I went to grab a bite to eat before the awards. We stopped at a local diner and had Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches and then perused the vendors on our way back. We went to the stage where the awards were supposed to be presented a little before 1PM and as it turned out, they were just finishing the ceremony. We went up to the man to ask for official times and places. My time was 26:28 (not my fastest 5K ever, but not my slowest either) which was good enough for first in my AG! I was shocked. The way I struggled with the race, I was hopefully to even place. The girls I ended up beating in the last mile were actually an age group up from me, but the extra motiviation didn't hurt. For my award, I got a medal and a box of recovery drink powder. Again, not too shabby for a $20 5K.

AG: 1 of 10
Gender: 6 of 79
OA: 34 of 145

Sorry, there weren't any pictures! I'll try to remember to get one of the medal tonight.