Wednesday, March 31, 2010

We did it! We ran!

I got my car fixed this morning and was even productive by a reading journal article while waiting!  I think the giant GM I made this morning really helped me out, because I felt great!  Sometime after lunch my sinus headache started coming back, but it seems to be in check now.  Caitlin and I met up after work to run along a path that did not have much shade.  It was HOT.  It was hot and we both started to feel under the weather again, but we ran anyway!  We ran 1 mile, walked for 0.3, ran another mile, walked a bit, and finished with another half a mile.  I screwed up the laps on Garmy, but Caitlin said our running was an overall average of a 11:50 pace.  Not bad considering we were dying out there.  After the run, we sat in the air conditioning and enjoyed some super delicious G2 Gatorade (it always tastes so good when I'm hot).  Was it one of the best runs I've ever had?  Definitely not.  But I am proud of us for getting out there!  We have plans to run Friday morning, and I plan to run while in Sarasota on Saturday.  That is at least 4 days of running.  It's amazing how much better I feel now that I ran.

Today was the last day of the steroids for my ringing ear.  No improvement yet.  Fingers crossed it's all related to sinuses and allergies.

Now I'm making my first batch of parsnip fries to accompany my hamburger tonight.  I have been drooling over the pictures of the parsnip fries at Caitlin@HTP's blog.  I'm glad I finally learned what they look like and where to find them in the grocery store. (o;  I loooove sweet potato fries, and I'm hoping I will also love these! 

I hope you all have a wonderful night!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Poster went well, but no run today.

I know, it sounds like a million excuse after another, but I do not feel well today.  Both Chris and Caitlin also feel yucky.  Therefore, Caitlin and I decided to put off our run that was planned for this evening until tomorrow.  I already have my running bag packed; regardless of how she feels, I will at least get in a run.  I hate feeling guilty for not running, so I am reminding myself that giving my body another day to rest will result in a better run tomorrow than I would have today.

My poster presentation went very well today.  I felt confident and was given several compliments.  Sadly I didn't win any prizes.  Oh well.  Maybe next year.  The most important part is that I felt confident and enjoyed myself.  Yay for chemistry!  (Note on the picture:  I was given that adorable chemistry cocktail set for my birthday last year.  Isn't it cute?!)

My plan for this evening includes lots of rest and a very early bedtime.  My cute little Honda Fit has to go in at the crack of dawn tomorrow for a recall... something about the window switches catching flames if they get wet...?  Eek!

I hope all of the rest of you in blog-land are feeling well!  Have a great night!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Energy level at absolute zero today... First Greek yogurt ever! YUM!

This morning started off great.  I had lots of sleep, a super delicious green monster smoothie for breakfast, and later a really good lunch.  I tried my very first Greek yogurt as part of my lunch today.  I keep reading about Chobani Yogurt, and they were on sale this week, so I picked up two.  Today I tried the pomegranate.  It was quite delicious!  The consistency was thicker than I'm used to, but the flavor was good.  I loved the little pomegranate seeds that popped in my mouth.  The 14g of protein really filled me up!  I wasn't hungry for my usual afternoon snack.  After lunch, my energy level seemed to just drop.  I just woke up from a 45 minute nap where I was out cold!  Seriously, drooling even!  I feel like my body is fighting off something.... maybe whatever is still causing my ear to ring! (It is better at night but much worse during the day.  Hopefully it is getting worse before it can get better.)  I do not have any desire to do anything.  The weather is nice outside, and I do not even want to run (crazy, right?!).  I have running plans tomorrow evening, so I'm not going to push myself today.  I am contemplating at least taking a walk to see if that helps.  Ever wish you could put your cat on a leash and walk them??

Tomorrow I am presenting a poster about my research, which runs from 11:30-4, so I will have to eat an early lunch or snack before going to that.  Since the Greek yogurt filled me up so much today, I plan to eat my strawberry yogurt with some cereal before the presentation.

I think I'll try that walk and go to bed early tonight.  Hopefully I will feel restored tomorrow.  Have a wonderful night all!

P.S.  Is anyone else hating the new picture uploader from blogger?  ugh!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Running group, food, apron, and kitties!

Yesterday, Chris and I enjoyed smoothies!  I combined some yogurt, milk banana, peanut butter, no sugar added Nesquik, and cinnamon... and added spinach to my own.  DELICIOUS! 
This morning I woke up early to meet-up with the local running group.  A total of three of us showed up, despite six people RSVP-ing.  Several of the members were doing a Ragnar Relay-type race today.  Our little group this morning decided to all stick together and just chatted and ran.  I really enjoyed myself and the pace was more an adequate for lots of chatting. (o:  Total time was 43:09 for 3.58 miles.
Mile 1:  11:43
Mile 2:  11:57
Mile 3:  12:00
Last 0.58 miles had a pace of 12:52 (mostly because one of the group members had an injury walked).

I had lunch plans with Caitlin, her boyfriend Ryan, and my office mate, to celebrate his finishing his seminar.  I thought that there was a farmer's market where the lunch plans were, but was disappointed to find out it was actually yesterday.  We had a delicious lunch at Panera, and I stopped by Bed Bath and Beyond to pick up a lid for my new 24 oz Tervis Tumbler!  It will be perfect for taking smoothies, coffee, tea, and whatever else I want to work! 

Oh and I almost forgot, my super cute apron arrived!!!  I had a gift certificate to spend on Amazon, and I have been wanting an apron.  I found THE CUTEST APRONS by Jessie Steele.  Amazon was also where I purchased my Tervis Tumbler.  (For the record, the liquor on top of the refrigerator has been there for a looong time.  We don't drink that much!)
After bringing Chris home lunch, since he was working on a school project, I headed out to another farmer's market.  This was my first time going to one with the intention of making purchases.  I was very excited!  The market was fun, but I was hoping for more actual produce and less arts and crafts and fair food.  Oh well.   I did purchase a large bag of delicious grapefruit and some straws of naturally flavored local honey (the honey is actually in straw tubes, so it would be perfect for taking for a peanut butter and honey sandwich at work).

Finally, some pictures of my lazy kitties before I go off to watch The Blindside.  I hope it is as good as I have been hearing.  I can't wait!
Oh, and check out the kettleworx give-away over at Endurance Isn't Only Physical.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Tinnitus, fro yo, and a 4 mile run

First, non-running related complaining about tinnitus...

Thursday I went back to the campus doctor, absolutely convinced that must have an ear infection.  Not only have I had that annoying ringing (which I swear is worse!), but my ear has been sore.  Unfortunately, my ear did not look infected.  I use the word "unfortunately", because I desperately want an explanation.  Instead I was sent to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist.  They did hearing tests and looked in my ear.  In the end, I spent a fortune to be told, "Welcome to the world of 50 million other people with tinnitus (ringing in the ear)...We don't know what causes it... (I am a scientist.  Give me a cause dammit!!!!)...We don't know how to cure it...(Lovely!)...Take some steroids for 6 days...You have a 50 percent chance of it going away... (insert me trying desperately not to cry out of frustration)...But think of the glass as half full... Oh and hopefully the loss of hearing in your right ear at a particular pitch will come back if the ringing goes away."  Needless to say, I cried before I even got to my car.  Oh, he did also tell me that it was not caused by my ipod and the ipod would not make it worse.  That's good to know.  I never thought the ipod was too loud, but that was the only explanation I could come up with.

You all probably think that I am being overly dramatic, and perhaps I am.  But I want you to imagine going the past two weeks of your life and sometimes non-stop for a minute or two, otherwise periodically every few minutes the annoying little neighborhood bully keeps running over and ringing the very high-pitched doorbell that happens to reside in your right ear.  It even occurs at night and wakes you up!   And the worst part... only You can hear it!  I complained about it on Facebook, which resulting in an old friend sending me a message saying, "You have tinnitus?  How did you get it?  I had it for 6 months!"  I don't know if I could take this for 6 months.  I seriously am going to quit Google-ing it, because people complain about having it for years!

Since I started the steroid treatment yesterday (6 day dose... 6 pills the first day, 5 the second... all the way to 1) the ringing has actually gotten worse.  Only something has changed.  Rather than being quick doorbell rings, the sound is sometimes being held for many seconds at a time.  I'm hoping that means something is changing and it just has to be worse before it can get better.

Lucky for me, Chris's dad is a doctor.  He assures me that I will be fine (and to stop reading Google).  It is probably just an inner ear virus, and hopefully the steroids will help with the inflammation and help it go away.  The hairs in my ear that help pick up high frequencies are probably out of place, and it could take a little while before they go back to where they are supposed to be (he uses much more medical terms...).  His being positive that it will go away is the only thing that is keeping me sane.  That and prayer.  I am very grateful to Chris's parents, Chris, my mom, and my friends who have made me feel better.

After leaving the ENT specialist, I went to tutoring where the family I tutor for made me feel better.  They prayed for my ear and fixed me some warm soup which was seriously the best tomato soup I have ever had!  I loved it so much that I took a picture of the can.  If you like tomato soup, this tomato bisque is heavenly!  And the warm soup made my ear feel better.

Yesterday, Caitlin and I met at 6 am to do another 4 mile run.  I did not sleep well at all the night before, so I was pretty tired.  In fact, it was a pretty crappy run for both of us, but we were both really proud that we did it.  It really lifted our moods when we finished.  The times were a little slow, because we both battled fatigue and cramps.  Overall I am happy, because we rock!

Mile 1:  11:26
Mile 2:  11:13
Mile 3:  11:55
Mile 4:  12:10

At lunch time, we went our for frozen yogurt at Yogurtopia.  I had a little of three different flavors:  death by chocolate, wild strawberry, and lady finger.  The last two were my favorites!  Then I added way too many delicious toppings including fresh fruit, graham crackers, granola and very delicious toasted coconut!  HEAVEN IN MY MOUTH! 

Later we went to watch two friends present their seminars at school, and they both passed!  Yay! After that, I had to stop by the restroom, and found tons of post-it notes all over the bathroom!  I took a picture of two of them.  I have a feeling these are OperationBeautiful-inspired.  They made my day!

Last night, Chris and I celebrated two and a half years together (awwww!) with dinner at Outback.  Mmm!  He is amazing, and I love him so much!!!  Sadly I did not take a picture, because I was super tired and looked dreadful.  I'll take one soon though!

I'm not sure what all I will be doing today.  I plan to go for another run with the meet up group in the morning (they are doing either 4 or 6 miles), so I will probably not run today.  I'll get back to you with whatever happens.  I hope that you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sorry I have been MIA... recap of the week so far

Sunday I did not end up running.  Instead it rained outside while I worked on my poster inside until really late.  We did make delicious pizza for dinner though.  Chris's pizza had turkey pepperoni and mushrooms while mine had both of those as well as artichoke hearts, broccoli, and pineapple.  YUM!  Of course there was plenty of left-overs for Monday's lunch.  We also made strawberry shortcake.  Mmm mmm mmm!

On Monday I ran a comfortable two miles. 
Mile 1:  9:49
Mile 2:  9:16
Monday I also received that sad news that I had been dreading.  Please keep my friend and her family in your prayers. 

Tuesday, I was in a really sad mood all day.  After work, Caitlin and I test drove the Chevy Traverse as part of the Girlfriend Getaway to get a free massage!  (Be sure to check out the bloggers on the bottom right-hand side of the link.)  The vehicle was way bigger than what I currently need, but it did drive well; although, I kept looking for the non-existent clutch.  Caitlin did not want to be out late, so we postponed our four mile run to today (Wednesday).  I ended up spending my Tuesday night with two amazing girls, Diane and Sarah.  They invited me over for their cooking night, which really helped cheer me up.  The food was amazing!  We made salmon with homemade mango salsa, asparagus, spinach salad with homemade dressing and toasted pecans, and a tasty parfait dessert.  We also tried some chocolate wine... seriously good!  Diane's dog, Shadow, also posed for a picture.

Today I had left-over salsa with my lunch.  I put it on top of an english muffin with roasted red pepper hummus.  It was very tasty.  After work, Caitlin and I ran four miles.

Mile 1:  11:20
Mile 2:  11:25
Mile 3:  11:31
Mile 4:  11:30
(edit:  I forgot to mention that we ran out further than originally planned just to have a change in scenery and also had a wonderful 2 mile walk back to our cars.)

This was the longest she has run without stopping, and I was very proud!  It was quite warm outside, so we were both pretty sweaty and thirsty.  The run did feel really good though.  I felt like I could have kept going for a few more miles, if I had more to drink.  We plan to run again Friday morning.

I hope you all are having a good week.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

I love art festivals!

Yesterday Chris and I went to the Winter Park Art Festival with our friends.  The first task was to find a parking spot.  That took forever and ended up costing $5, but in the end it was worth it!  We met with Nick and Federica to have lunch.  Lunch was alright, but I was anxious to get to the art festival.  We walked around for 2.5 hours and saw a ton of amazing art work.  I have to admit though, that I didn't see anything that made me think I just had to have it... not like the cute frog prints I purchased last weekend.  Another thing that I noticed was that I could not afford most of the prints at this show.  Most places wanted $75 for a print!  Being that I am a graduate student, it really made me appreciate the prints I purchased for $20 each of the cute frogs.  For that reason, I would like to say a big THANK YOU to Rob Kaz for not overpricing his amazing art work so that I could still enjoy it!

The one thing that I especially love about art festivals, no matter what the cost of the artwork, is that I always leave feeling inspired!  I just want to run home and pull out my sketch book and find a pencil and eraser.  I've decided that I want to take painting classes, since that is something I never really took in school.  In high school, I took classes on drawing and pottery, but never really on painting.  I have no idea when or where I will find a class or the time, but eventually I will get there.

Along the walk through the festival, I passed people with what looked like frozen yogurt with fresh fruit on top!  That became an absolute must find for me!  I love frozen yogurt!  Eventually we found my new favorite dessert place... Tutti Frutti!  Seriously, how did I not know about this place before now?!?!  I had a mixture of pomegranate and death by chocolate frozen yogurt and topped it with dark chocolate, coconut, granola, kiwi, strawberries, blackberries, and mango... yes, I know that is a ton, but I just kept finding more things that looked good!  I love that you can get whatever you want and then you pay based on weight.  Brilliant!  I was in heaven!
 That just looks delicious, does it?!  Be prepared to see more pictures of that delicious dessert in the future!

After the art festival, Chris and I went to pick up our amazing tree sculpture that we purchased at the art festival last weekend.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE it!  The leaves are made of rubber and the trunk of aluminum.  That is an actual piece of wood that it is sitting on.  The artist, Dale the Tree Mon, does not currently have a website for me to link to, but if you are interested in his work let me know, and I can give you his e-mail address.  I found out that he has some of his artificial bonsai trees on Joe Bonsai's site... check them out here!  Here is our tree, sitting on our dresser:

Today it is rainy out, which makes me feel especially lazy.  I have done a lot of sleeping and relaxing.  Now it is time to work on my poster for my research.  I'd like to go for a run  later, but that will depend on the weather.  I have already spent three days not running, so I would love get out there today for at least a little run.  I am also feeling much better and the ringing in my ear seems less frequent so far today!  Yay!!!

I thought I'd end this by sharing a few pictures of my super adorable niece, Joy.  The pictures were taken with my sister's phone, so the quality is poor, but she is too cute not to share!

 Finally, check out the Thorlo Experia Sock Giveaway at Endurance Isn't Only Physical.  Speaking of socks, what kind of socks do you all wear when running?  I am discovering that I desperately need some new socks.  I even tried "borrowing" Chris's, but of course they are too big.

I hope you all have a wonderful Sunday!!!!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Make the ringing stop...

The ringing in my ear is still there.  It's like a doorbell tucked inside my right ear.  On Wednesday night I finally had enough and started Google-ing.... not a good idea!  Within a matter of minutes I was convinced I was losing my hearing, may possibly have a tumor, and at the very list would be plagued with this high pitched sound in my head forever.  We call Chris's dad, since he's a doctor, and he assures me that there is a nasty bug going around that causes congestion which can result in a ringing in the ear.  He tells me to take some medicine and it will help.

The next day the ringing seemed to hit an all new level of frequency while I was at work.  I kid you not, it beeped every time I clicked my mouse buttons!  I am trying to make a poster to present my research at a forum on the 30th of this month.  I need my computer and mouse!  It was driving me absolutely insane.  My boss told me that the mother planet was probably trying to call me back home.  I would be more amused if I knew aliens existed that could rip my ear out of my head. 

I left work early to go to the doctors.  She looked in my ear and said, "Let's make sure there aren't any critters in there."  Me:  "Haha".  Her:  "No seriously, I found a roach in a guy's ear once."  Me:  "WHAT?!"  Her:  "Yeah, I was looking in his hear and it was looking right back at me, and I thought to myself, how do I tell this young man that there is a roach in his ear?"  Turned out the roach was dead, but STILL!!  I would have seriously been flipping the f*** out!  I cannot even kill roaches.  Instead I stand on chairs, scream like a little girl, and throw things at it until I think it's dead.  If we have bug spray, I will literally empty the entire can on the bug so it is covered in a mountain of white foam.  Lucky (or unlucky) for me, I now have cats that will kill those little buggers.  *cringe*.  Long story short, no bugs in my ear.  Nothing appears to be wrong with my ear.  I am probably congested, so I am taking a medication that contains pseudoephedrine HCL and also Flonaze. 

Then yesterday I was in the shower washing my hair and felt a big sore bump behind my ear (the same ear that is ringing).  I instantly think back to the Google-ing I had done and think I must really have a tumor!  I woke up Chris, and after finally doing some more Google-ing I realize that that bone behind my ear is really a lymph node... duh.  It probably was swollen, because I am sick with something.  What a crazy way to start my Friday!  The ringing is becoming less consistent, but it sure as anything is still present!  I hope to have good news for you all by the time the weekend is done. 

Sadly, that poster that I mentioned I was creating for work... well I spent the first part of yesterday making all kinds of fancy graphs and plots only to have my adviser tell me he'd rather I make them in another program.  This meant that A) I had to miss my friend's seminar presentation, B) had to cancel Caitlin's and my four mile run, and C) had to stay at work late.  I was really bummed about missing my friend's seminar.  I was also sad not to run, but given that my body is fighting off something I figure it was probably for the best anyway.  We have decided to do our four mile on Tuesday (her bf is in town all weekend and she has a late night class on Monday).

Last night I seriously slept for 11 hours.  I have always found that when I'm sick, sleep seems to be the best cure.  As much as I want to go running today, for now I'm going to take it easy.  At least I did get in three days of running this week, even if it wasn't much the last day.  Chris and I have plans to meet Nick and Federica for lunch then to go to the Winter Park Arts Festival.  I am very excited about that! 

Oh one more thing... on Thursday night one of the girls at work was celebrating her birthday so a bunch of us went out to Seasons 52 for dinner.  I had never been there before, but I had heard great reviews.  Also, everything on their menu is under 475 calories!  How cool is that?  I was craving shrimp, so I had a delicious salad with spinach, roasted red pepper, chickpeas, feta, and shrimp.  Mmm!  And then we all tried one of the little desserts that comes in what looks like a large shot glass (forgive me for not knowing the real name).  I tried the mango and raspberry cheesecake.  YUM!  Sadly my picture of that did not come out.  My camera did not feel the need the use the flash for some reason.  I wanted to try the dessert more than I felt like taking a good picture.

Last but not least, a picture of my little Kirby being all cute.

I hope you all have a wonderful Saturday! 

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Losing a parent...

My friend Erin is going through a really rough time.  Her father is being put in hospice care this week.  Back in January he was put in the hospital for MRSA.  He seemed to be improving after heart surgery, but I'm afraid it has gotten worse.  My heart is absolutely breaking for her! 

I know what it is like to lose your dad, because I lost mine on September 2, 2005 in a motorcycle accident.  He was wearing a helmet, and I was told by a nurse who witnessed the crash and attempted CPR that he died instantly.  Waking up to that phone call was by far the worst experience of my life.  In an effort to find some silver lining, I can say that going through that experience taught me just how very strong of a person I am.  Whenever life seems overwhelming and I feel weak, I remind myself that if I can survive that, I can survive anything.

I am so happy for Erin that she has a chance to say good-bye, but at the same time I cannot image what it would be like to anticipate losing a parent.  As I said, my heart is breaking for her.  She is such a wonderful person, and I wish she wasn't going through this horrible experience.  My prayers go out to Erin and her family, including her husband Kyle, who is one of my very good friends.  I know this is very hard on him as well. 

I felt the need to post something, because this has really been weighing on my mind lately.  Thank you for "listening".  I love you Erin and Kyle!

Me and My Dad.
Graduating with my BS in Forensic Science in August 2005

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I started my St. Patty's Day off with a Green Monster smoothie.  It had frozen peaches, strawberries, a banana, spinach, flax, and milk.  It was delicious!  (Although still not as good as the pumpkin smoothie... *sigh*)  I also remembered to wear a green shirt, but that is where my celebration ends.  Sadly I do not enjoy beer, and Chris has a lot of homework to do tonight anyway.

All morning I looked forward to lunch time!  I made that amazing artichoke heart sandwich from yesterday as the main part of my lunch.  This time I took a pic before eating it.  It was made using a multi-grain english muffin, roasted red pepper hummus, jarred artichoke hearts, tomato, and lettuce.  I think a little feta would be a good idea too.  Check it out! 

After work, Caitlin and I did an easy 2 mile run.  Our goal is 4 on Friday (that will be a new distance record for Caitlin, yay!).  Today was nice, but I think I drank too much before heading out.  My stomach was kind of sloshy.  I hate that feeling.

Mile 1:  10:45
Mile 2:  10:30

I have another topic I would like to discuss... something that has really been on my mind a lot, but I feel it deserves its own blog post.  I'll get to that next.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Ringing in my ear and sister's engagement!

First off, my littlest sister is engaged!  She was "unofficially engaged" at Christmas, but today he proposed with a ring.  I got a text message with a picture of the ring this afternoon.  I have not heard the story yet, but I'm excited to hear it.  That is always my favorite part!  I am very happy for her and her fiance!   (...As long as the wedding is still at least 4 years off like she has planned... she is only 17, and I would like her to move away from home first... I am a happy but protective older sister.).  He is a nice boy, and he seems to be a very positive influence in her life.  He is encouraging her to go to college, which I really like. 

Second, I got my hair cut today!  I kept noticing split ends, and that was driving me nuts!  I finally  made an appointment.  As much as I LOVE my hair longer, it needed a few inches off.  The woman layered it nicely (without layers my curly hair will turn into a triangle sphinx shape).  I actually have not seen it dry yet... I went straight from the hair place to go run with Caitlin. 

That leads me to topic three.  We did a nice three miles.  We may try to fit in two miles tomorrow, since I my schedule is busy on Thursday.  Then we hope to do 4 miles on Friday.

Mile 1:  11:00
Mile 2:  11:17
Mile 3:  10:51

Fourth, my ear will not stop ringing!!!!  My right ear has had a high pitched doorbell like sound in it since this weekend!  Today it was much more frequent.  I'm not sure if my iPod is to blame (I don't think my music is that loud).  All I know is that it is driving me crazy!

Finally, I have been discovering a lot of new ways to eat vegetables by reading new blogs.  I seem to have been finding a lot on Caitlin@HTP's blog.  I made a sandwich with a multigrain english muffin, roasted red pepper hummus, tomato, lettuce, and jarred artichoke hearts.  Seriously delicious!!!!  I plan to take another for lunch tomorrow! 

Now I'm off to relax and read some of my fun book.  Oh yes, and try to actually download the software for my Garmin, since I have never done that.  I hope you all have had a wonderful day!

Monday, March 15, 2010

8 Miles!!! That's right!

I really wanted to run 8 miles on Saturday, but ended up only doing 4 because I was so hot.  Tonight I set out to run 8 miles, and I did it!!!  My time was also better than I thought it was going to be.  The first 4 were pretty rough.  Mentally I was rather tired.  I had planned out my run so that I could stop by a park that has a water fountain (that park I found on Saturday) around 4.5 miles.  I figured that would be the perfect spot to stop since it allowed for a water break about half way through my run and even better the stop was just past half way.  For me, running is all a big mental game.  Whenever I hit my half way mark, I tell myself, "It's all downhill from here."  So after the water stop, it was even less than half way!  That renewed my energy.  I only stopped running to wait for cross walks (which I stop my Garmin at those points, just because that's what I do) and to get water.  The last mile and a half of my run I was counting down the distance.  I don't normally like to look at Garmy, but I needed to know how much farther until the alarm was going to sound.  I've noticed that when I'm tired I tend to talk to myself in the third person.  Usually it's in my head, but I have caught myself talking aloud when I am especially tired.  I usually say something like, "Come on Jes; you've got this!"  or "You can do this baby!"  or "____ miles is nothing...  You can do that in your sleep!"  The biggest push for me is telling myself, for example, "If you are ever going to get in that 8 mile run, you are going to have to make it through this past 6 all over again!"  That seems to make the 2 extra miles not seem so bad.  What do you say to motivate you when you're running?  Oh, and ladies, what is your take on cars honking, cat calls, etc.?  I have to admit, I enjoy a car honk.  It gives me a little pep in my step to know that someone has noticed the hard work I'm doing.  Cat calls are... okay.  The one thing I do not really appreciate is hearing, 'Hey Baby!" or "Hey Sexy!" or some less polite terms of endearment that I have heard. 

Okay, here's the breakdown.  It gets a little squirly in the middle since I hit lap on my Garmy at the water stop.  I have the Garmin set to lap every mile:

Mile 1:  10:22
Mile 2:  10:10
Mile 3:  9:37 (I knew that water break was getting close)
Mile 4:  9:51
0.35 miles:  10:09 pace
Water stop
Next mile:  10:05
Next mile:  10:03
Next mile:  10:10
Last 0.65 miles:  9:46 pace

Overall time:  1:20:14; Average pace:  10:01

While running, I thought my pace was closer to 11 minutes per mile.  Woo-hoo!

Tomorrow I'm supposed to run with Caitlin after work.  That should be nice.  I hope you all are having a great Monday!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

10 weeks so far! Yummy food and a fun art festival!

I have so many wonderful things to say today!  First, I have successfully completed 10 weeks of running at least three days a week!  When I started, I remember it being more of a challenge, but now I am disappointed when I only fit in three days.  I'm trying to make sure I don't over-do-it, because there are still 42 weeks to go!  I'm very proud of myself!  I have noticed a significant improvement in my energy and attitude since I started.  I am much happier when I work-out consistently.  I have also really enjoyed having the time (now that I'm finished with actual classes) to cook and try new recipes.  I would like to say a great big THANK YOU to all of you other bloggers and readers out there who have helped to  keep me motivated, inspired, and who have posted delicious recipes and inspiring stories.

I started my Friday off with Caitlin@HTP's baked oatmeal again.  This time I added some chopped almonds and a little Splenda brown sugar, which made it extra tasty!  I'm kind of odd in that I prefer to eat my oatmeal with milk over top.  I've been eating it like that since I was little, so I added some to this as well.  It was delicious and very filling!  My picture did not turn out well, so I'll leave that one out.  Then I got to work and my dear friend Caitlin (for those who do not follow this regularly... different Caitlin, same spelling) had made snickerdoodle cookies and left some on my desk.  Those brought back wonderful childhood memories.  Mmmm!  I ended up staying at work until after the gym closed, so I didn't run.  Instead Chris took me out to dinner (YUM!), and I went to bed ridiculously early.

Going to bed early meant that I woke up extra early.  I started my day trying out Cailin@HTP's mini quiches.  I mixed one whole egg and two egg whites, steamed broccoli, mozzarella cheese, and some ham.  I poured them into my new ramekins (since I don't own any cupcake or muffin tins... yet!).  I baked them at 350F for 35 minutes.  They were delicious!  There are so many new flavors I want to try!  Back home, where my mom lives, there is a restaurant that I love that serves the best omelets ever!  I want to try to duplicate the delicious flavors in the quiches one of these days.  One has chicken, mushrooms, cheese, and is topped with marinara sauce and some mozzarella.  Another has mushrooms, chicken, and is topped with black beans and salsa.  I even think some delicious hot sauce, like Tiger sauce, would be fantastic on them!  I will let you know what I try!  Oh also, I learned it is best to add a little cooking spray to the ramekins to help keep the egg from sticking.

After filling up on my eggs and an orange, I spent my morning reading for fun!  I have just started Patricia Cornwell's Kay Scarpetta series.  I don't know why I haven't read them before now, but so far I'm enjoying them.  I may have even dosed off for a little bit.  I was so much enjoying my relaxing morning that I did not head out for my run until 10am.  In hindsight, it was a bit too late.  I had wanted to do 8 miles, but I ended up stopping at 4.  While the temperature was quite wonderful, I ended up a bit too hot and without water.  I also had told Chris I would make him breakfast, so I wanted to get back.  It was a really nice 4 miles, and I will try to do 8 miles this next week.  The run started off with a bit of a cramp, so I decided to keep it nice and slow.  I even went down a few new roads and discovered a park I didn't know about!  The park even had an enclosure where kids were playing roller hockey (not sure what you really call that... hockey on roller blades).  I am looking forward to checking it out in the future.  I should definitely try to locate any water fountains, because that could improve my running in the future.

Mile 1:  10:41
Mile 2:  10:47
Mile 3:  10:25
Mile 4:  9:50

When I came back, I cooled off with my favorite GM smoothie that is both tasty and a brilliant color green!  It had a banana, pumpkin, vanilla yogurt, lots of cinnamon, a speck of nutmeg, flax, sweetener, and of course spinach!  I seriously could just eat those all day long!  Sadly, that was the last of my canned pumpkin.  Today I am on a mission to find more!
Then we headed off to the Baldwin Park Arts Festival!  I was very excited!!!  It was much smaller than I anticipated, but there were several really cool artists and tons of people walking their dogs!  I saw several golden retrievers... Oh I cannot wait to have another one.  One day...  Back to the festival... We actually bought a few things there.  We found this really cool sculpture of a tree (it's difficult to describe).  The artist is actually custom making one in the colors we want.  I will post a picture just as soon as we get it!  I'm so excited!  I already have the perfect place for it, in our bedroom.  Then I purchased two prints of the cutest frog paintings imaginable!  The artist, Rob Kaz, is phenomenal!  I would absolutely love to own some of his paintings, but until I can afford them I will love the prints I purchased!  When I was little, my dream was to be a children's book writer and illustrator.  I love, love, love children's books, especially those that have brightly colored pictures.  When I saw these paintings by Rob Kaz, I thought they looked like scenes out of a Pixar film.  I was pleasantly surprised just now when I read on his website that Nightlight is just one of a series of paintings that will appear in a children's book!  I am psyched!  I am afraid that the pictures I took have glare since I already framed them, but you can see better pictures on his website.  Also, it turns out he has a blog as well!

Hey You

Finally, I purchased a really cute bookmark fromJennifer McCully.  There were soooo many cool pictures that I wanted to purchase, but it will have to wait for later date.  I settled on a book mark and drooled over the 26.2 necklace.  I told myself that I cannot purchase that until AFTER I complete the marathon next year.  Her art is very inspirational, and some pieces are down right funny!  I suggest you check her out!  I will definitely be purchasing some other items in the future.

After the art festival, we did some shopping.  We ended up doing a very late lunch/early dinner at one of my favorite places, 903 Mills Market!  I tried a different sandwich than what I usually order as well as some very delicious roasted red pepper and potato soup.  What I love so much about this place is that I can eat outdoors in a nice calming atmosphere.  People tend to bring their pets too!  The food is delicious and there is an assortment of wine and local beers.  The picture below is courtesy of an an Orlando Sentinel article.

Then we went home to do some cleaning, and I took a nap.  Later we went to see one of the girls that I tutor in "The Glass Menagerie".  She played the mother, and boy oh boy was she fantastic!!!  It was the perfect ending to a perfect day!

Since the quiche was such a big hit for me yesterday, I made some for both myself and Chris today.  Of course he did not want broccoli in his. 

The rest of the day is going to include going on a hunt for more canned pumpkin, getting my passport photo taken (it's time to renew!), and putting together some work stuff for a meeting tomorrow.  I may go for a run tonight, or I may just let my legs rest and enjoy a nice run after work tomorrow. 

I hope that you all are having a wonderful weekend as well!

Also, if you have any opinion on fuel belts for running, please let me know!

Finally, check out the OneMoreMile shirt give-away over at Endurance Isn't Only Physical. (o:

P.S.  Next week there is another art festival in Winter Park!