Monday, July 28, 2008


Because it is back to the track tomorrow for some serious intervals that equate roughly 7-7.5 miles. I did do a recovery 5k today at 9:15-20 first mile, 9:05-9:10 second mile, and 8:57 the final mile. Nowhere near what I was accomplishing in the Spring. Sometimes I can get very discouraged, but upon news of other runners in my immediate circle suffering from the same malady I am recovering from--not so bad.As far as fighting weight--I am a lean machine. But with the weight loss came an "energy" loss, and I am paying for it. So the plight before me entails marathon training (which started on Sunday) and getting back into the strength training after my STUPID right shoulder and it's problems.I want to get back to the 8:00 sprints for a nice 5k, and a general feeling of overall well-being in a longer run--instead of suffering and begging for the end. It will happen. All things in good time for good people--and as long as I am true to myself and my endeavors, it is all good.

Back in the Saddle
AGAIN! And that song was on my playlist this morning, so I had good inspiration. I got up, I got out of bed, and I ran just over seven miles this morning at a pretty steady, SLOOOOOWWWW pace (10:00/mile). I felt good, though. I felt like it is going to come back to me after slacking with this flu. So tomorrow I will cycle or run again, and do some strength training. Bob and I are going to resume the speed training at the track with the group on Tuesday.PROUD moment for mommy today. Bob and I took the 12-year-old and the 8-year-old to the store today and purchased running gear and shoes. Lindsay is an Asics girl like her mother, and Samantha preferred the Nikes. We shall see how it goes. Lindsay is going to pile cross country on top of soccer and AP classes come the beginning of the school year. They are running tomorrow. Samantha is the fast one, keeping up with me for 3 miles with no issue.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Forgive me

...and my lack of grammatical and punctuation skill as of late. This illness kicked my ass, but I am better and ready to go. So today I acquiesced and purchased a running skirt. I found the Nike version at the store, and Bob encouraged me to try it on. Envision a woman in a dressing room....jumping....jogging in place....swishing her hips back and forth. I wanted to ensure the compression shorts didn't give me the ultimate wedgie. I LOVE IT. I FEEL FREE AND UNFETTERED. I am excited of easing myself back into running Sunday with my new skirt. I am hitting the gym tomorrow for strength training, and then a 7.5 the day after. Whatever virus I had was a bitch. I almost feel as though I have deconditioned in one week. I have new apparel, I have a new "fresh legs" feeling, and I have my beloved route that puts me on a hill decline from mile 4-5.

GREAT NEWS!!! Another old friend from high school contacted me, and she is intending on attending our reunion my birthday weekend. This ought to be fun. I am so excited about meeting up with past buds; and as always, seeing my best friend for over 23 years. PLEASE don't let the DJ play worn-out eighties tunes--but I suppose I will have to expect that.

Bob and I have a laid-back weekend planned. We started off with a visit to the beach today. The skies were clear, the ocean was transparent peridot, and I harrassed a crab. A good time was had by all, and some of us are a little red.

AND SO--time to get serious. Training for the Goofy Challenge MUST commence. I am shaking off this malady. I am focused. I am also down another size (from the stomach issues).

I just need new music yet again. The quest begins.

The 7.5 on Sunday. The spinning intervals Monday. Speed training at the track on Tuesday. The year just flew by; and so I realize, marathoning is a lifestyle, a routine, an expectation.

Here we go!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


No--not the awesome song by Led Zeppelin. ME! I have been battling this flu/virus/whatever since Saturday. Had to duck out of the 8 and a half on Saturday at about mile 4.5. I just couldn't do it any longer. I spent the next couple of days in bed, watching bad television and feeling sorry for myself. Today was the first day I got up off my ass and did about 3.75 on the dreadmill at a 9:00 mile and I walked one. I tried to feign weight training, but I didn't get too far. Thank goodness the kids are self-contained for the most part. I am aching as I type this.SO! I did attend the Democratic headquarters grand opening on Friday. A good day was had by all. I was thoroughly impressed by Tim Cunha--a candidate running for congress for Florida's sixth district. a dynamic orator and politician! He seems to be well-invested in his constituents, and I will be voting for him.My Obama yard sign did not survive the weekend. I sent a mass email to my neighborhood telling them essentially to "fuck off". The response? The community's rules and bylaws prohibit the posting of political signs--NEVER MIND THAT ALL THE THE REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES IN THE UPCOMING ELECTION WERE OUT IN FULL FORCE. If ONE McSAME sign is erected--damn skippy my Obama will be replaced. My first amendment rights so casually overlooked--our neighborhood isn't even incorporated, so we really have no legal obligation to follow the rules or pay the yearly fees. I want my children to be proactive and who they are--not defined by the "status quo". Alison suggested I should smear dog feces around the sign, and deposit piles around the base of the sign...that way, the next thief will have an umpleasant surprise executing his cowardly act.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Good news, bad news, expectation

Bob and I awoke this morning with every intention of driving out to run with the "group". At 4 AM we stumbled toward the door to check the conditions--steady downpour. We simply glanced at each other and grunted, "UhUh". Back to bed, and dreamland. 4.1 boring, increased pace miles on the treadmill instead. ***SIGH***

The good news? We had an actual "credit" on our daughter's orthodontic bill; and Bob received good news about some "forgotten" billing for some of his insurance carriers.

BETTER news? My county's Democratic headquarters is having a grand re-opening tomorrow. I am so glad I get to connect with many like-minded women who belong to our mothers' group. I can't wait to procure some Obama bumperstickers. Hell, I may even score a tee-shirt. Little things make me happy. Making a difference and being part of the community makes me ECSTATIC.

The "expectation" is that I remain injury-free. I feel stronger than ever, and I am really beginning to see muscular differences in my back and shoulders. I don't think I have ever been so healthy (and so tired, lol) in my entire life. The "expectation" is that marathon training is upon me. I have to be so careful, Because of the Goofy Challenge, I have to do two long runs every other weekend. I still don't want to trash any hope of the Miami ING being somewhat of an improvement.

Note: I read something very provoking the other day. "Iraq wants the United States to help them develop a constitution. We may as well give them ours, we aren't using it anymore."

Truer words have never been spoken. We all will get through this, right?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

"My Relationship Garden"

My husband is lying beside me in bed, singing a made-up song and it goes like this: "My relationship garden, where is my relationship garden? I had a relationship garden, and now there is none." LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!! He is referring to the fact that we have been running with this group (which in and of itself is not a big deal with the mileage, but rather the time of day we have to awaken in order to ATTEND these group runs). The alarm clock is set for 4 AM so that we may travel and be pseudotysongaysanddeenakastors. Ha Ha Ha. Right. So thus no energy for other endeavors. And I also busted my ass at the gym today with hardcore upper body and core. Tomorrow we embark on downtown's bridges. Bright and early to conquer Florida's only elevations--manmade bridges over waterways.

Poor Bob. I get through tomorrow and move on to Saturday and eight and a ten/eleven. We might as well--we do have the Goofy Challenge to prepare for. I am going to be a sleeping beauty with each passing month.

By the way--I have let go the speed issue. Just run. Just shut up and run--it doesn't matter how fast you get there if everyone eventually gets there. Right?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Spinning alone

So I decided to put together my own cycling playlist, and I waited until the class was over to go into the spin room. I cycled for 45 minutes in the dark, all by myself and DAMN, I got one hell of a workout. Then I started thinking, "I like cycling so much as a crosstrain, why don't I just get certified?" I will do some homework and see what comes of it. It shouldn't be that difficult. I can get paid, get free childcare, and receive a great workout all at the same time.

Update about the search: Bob and I were notified Friday that there is a potential match for his birthmother in this large, international database. The problem is, we need to provide more information. I haven't received the non-identifying information from the courthouse yet. It could be months before we find out anything. But wouldn't it be incredible if someone was actually searching for Bob? After all these years? Five years of searching, and we are just a little more hopeful. I keep telling myself to have a little patience with this stuff.

Trying to decide how far I want to run tomorrow. For some reason, five sounds great. I haven't done my 5-mile route in awhile. It's a shame I can't do the track practice with that group I ran with yesterday. But I simply can't make it there that early in the morning. I have always wanted to go to the private school down the road from my house and do speed training on their track--but it is private, so I am SOL. I would be so embarrassed if I got kicked off, lol! It would probably remind me of my schoolyears and all the trouble I got into.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Sunday Group Run

...did not work out as well as I had hoped. First of all, I am so used to running alone and running in a "building-up" kind of way rather than a "blast off". The first four miles we ran in the dark at a pretty quick pace (for me, that is). Then we headed back to the start to meet up with other folks who were just doing the 7 miler.

Bob, bless his heart, stayed with me the whole time. I knew he was struggling to stay as slow as I was, and I really appreciate him for that. The ladies I was running with (or trying desperately to keep up with), were very nice and congenial. They really expouse the virtues of "group runs", and it is a concept that is completely new to me. Bob made an excellent observation, "Lee Ann, you run faster by yourself." He is right. I was in unfamiliar territory (as scenic and historic as it was), I didn't have my Gatorade plant in between the waters, I ran sans iPod (well, I had it on me, and I didn't make it thru one song). And maybe if I stuck with a group, I would get faster. Especially on their "speed training" days on a high school track.

But I have to ask myself, "Is this what I want?". What the hell do I want? Do I want to be faster, or just run for the sake of running? Don't I enjoy it? Of course I do! Why complicate things with PRs and speed training? Why bother? But then the competition with myself and advancing myself for personal "feel good" reasons works, too! I know I wasn't built to be a runner, but I have started to define my own kind of running. Screw it if I don't fit the stereotype. Screw it that I am getting older and working harder at it. I can get out there for a 20-miler and run the whole way. So I'm not going to Boston. Who cares? I get to go to New York with the kiddos and the man again (when we get picked; and we will, dammit, for the NYC marathon).

If this is the worst of my problems, then I am probably doing ok!

Friday, July 11, 2008

A Day At the Beach

The man and I hauled six children to the beach today. I couldn't get over how cold the water was! We had a great time, and the baby HATED the water. Bob commented on how little girls are so much braver than little boys--and he is on target! Marco kicked around the soccer ball and chased seagulls. We had shrimp cocktail, spicy wings, and the freshest, most succulent strawberries I think I have ever had. We are going back to Publix to get some more. A nice departure from the tomato salmonella scare that keeps me away from my beloved Roma tomatoes. Want a quick, satisfying snack that performs? Slice Roma tomatoes and roast in oven until shrinkage (ha ha) occurs (no browning, then it is kinda gross). Remove tomatoes from oven. On another baking sheet--use olive oil to prepare the pan, place triscuit crackers on pan. Smear a little pesto paste on each cracker, add one slice roasted tomato and a sprinkling of fresh, shaved parmesan cheese. Bake in oven @ 350 until cheese is melted. WHOA BABY. I betcha the roasting kills whatever slamonella is present, lol!

So the strawberries were fantastic. We had some Heineken Light, and a nice day was had by all. I am resting up for my long run on Sunday. I am looking forward to new scenery with this group Bob and I are joining up with. The man and I have even been juggling ideas about a business venture, and scheming to incorporate running into the mix. Stay tuned. I have some work ahead of me.

Headed to the gym tomorrow for some strength training. How I love the weekends!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Toenails! Black and Beautiful!

Crap, I misplaced my diet coke...hold on a sec.

We did S-3 training today--WOOHOO what a class. I was at the point where I couldn't even talk! We sweat ourselves silly. After my 7 miler yesterday, I have a blood blister under the second largest toe on my left foot. I am going to lose it. That probably makes the tenth toenail I have lost as a result of running. The painful toe made the ladder suicide sprints obnoxious, with all of the quick stop and gos. But GOOD NEWS! I think I have convinced Bob to run with the group this weekend! I suggested the change of scenery would be a nice variance to our normal routes. I think he is going because he is worried about me running with people I am not familiar with.

Quick RAVE--Cheez-It Zesty Queso flavor. Fantastic, addictive, 'nuff said.

Tomorrow I am going to kick in speed training again for the 3.1 mile loop I have neglected recently. I am not setting any minute/mile goals--I am simply going to run my heart out as fast as I can. Maybe this will be the run that excavates the blackened toenail!! That would be the biggest relief, ha ha ha. I want to do this strongly and without angst and suffering. If I focus on the fact that it is only 3.1 miles, I will psych myself into running a better run (or bettering my running, lol).

Bob and I talked about getting out the generator and making sure it works. He has this gut feeling we are going to get one good storm this year, and he wants to make sure we have all of our ducks in a row. Candles, we go again! Thank goodness we got the tree situation taken care of. After that hurricane of 2004, we don't want to go through the agony of no power for 4 days again...although NOTHING compared to those who suffered through Katrina. I have plans even to occupy the children. I will go to the public library to stock up on books before the storm hits. We have a portable television that is battery operated--although since TV is going from analog to digital, this may be the last year we could use this television. And it certainly isn't worth the money to get the part that helps make it digital ready.

Well, I am off to figure out what to feed the kiddos for dinner. Not much going on today, but I am looking forward to the morning.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Slave to the Garmin

I finally dusted off the old Garmin and attached it to my wrist. I told myself "we" were going to do 7 solid miles at a 9:30 pace or better. I figured I will train for these half-marathons that are coming up, even though I already have the mileage to do one today with no problem. The problem is--I want to do it faster. My best half is 2:10:44--that is a 10:02 mile. That was in 2006, and I know I can do better this year. If I want to finish in 2:05:00, I have to run the half at 9:32. I can do this. I keep telling myself I can do this.

So I set off paying more attention to my Garmin than my surroundings (which is why I detest the Garmin). Look down--8:32 "TOO FREAKING FAST, LEE ANN YA DOOFUS"....moderate...moderate....Look down--10:02 "FOR THE LOVE OF MARY, COME ON NOW!". I was laughing hysterically that I couldn't get "right" with the pace. So I was all over the road, all over the mileage; and I was feeling pretty stupid. I will admit I struggled somewhat throughout the run. But I had decided if I can just add on every other week at this particular pace, I should be able to pull this off.

My final minute per mile tally today for the seven? 9:30. It's doable.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Branching out?

I am considering running with a group of people, and I wonder what I am going to get out of it. I have always enjoyed my solitary runs, and I am a slave to my iPod. I think it is because I live in such a noisy environment. When I get out there early in the morning, and the streets are deserted, the low hum of absolute quiet is magical. But if I go to some of these scheduled runs, maybe the sheer motivation of other moving people will ignite some surge in me.

When I first started running, I ran with others. I was so much slower then, and I always had this strange sense of guilt that I was somehow holding the others back. Of course, they denied that I was any trouble whatsoever...but one lady was so much faster, she moved on. We had two others move away, and the good friend...didn't have the desire to do distances. So I fell upon myself to be my own entity out on the road. At first I was scared, and a little befuddled; eventually came a warm sense of "being". At some point, I couldn't imagine running with others again. I get entrenched in my thoughts, and I get to listen to my music (as opposed to whatever is blaring from the Disney Channel at my house).

I will give it a try and see how it goes. Who knows? Maybe I will learn something new. Meeting new people and enjoying different scenery may invigorate my stride.

Speaking of stride, I am beginning to culminate a little trepidation about the Tour De Pain coming up here shortly. Three races in 24 hours. Doable? Yes. The one aspect of the race that troubles me is the four mile beach run--the first race of the three. I don't run well on the beach. I got injured the last beach race, so I have to eat a little crow this time around. I am going to have to run it and not "race" that particular race. I can't risk the injuries as marathon season is upon us and I am in full swing with training as of the last week of July. I will focus on the mile sizzler--maybe, just maybe, I can be super fast for once!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Silly Me

I did 9.6 this morning with the intent on doing them quickly. I really want to up the ante with the three half-marathons coming up in the autumn. Perfect conditions this morning, light misty breeze and a coolness that is uncommon this time of year.

I set off at a moderate pace and treated the first 3 or so miles as a warm-up, and then I spied a runner in the distance and what do you think happened next? My silly brain began pressuring me to catch her. I was going about an eight flat mile when I passed her, and then I was determined to smoke her--so I sped up even more. Dumb and dumber. Never mind that I indulged on Bob's decadent (but oh so dehydrating baby back ribs last night), never mind that I still had a good three and a half miles to go, or that my right pinky toe was threatening me with a blister...

Bob caught up with me at about this point and I had to put Carmex on my toe--but hey, it worked! Whatever gets you through. He stuck with me for about another mile and a half. Then he left me in the dust, ha ha ha. Now I am lazing in bed before the house is invaded by screaming and giggling children. My folks and my niece are here, and I am enjoying this time I have to myself.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

And so we have a victory...

We filed a claim with the tree surgeon's insurance, and it is covered. So we will be able to recoup our money! YAY!! They just have to eat the deductible, and they don't have a choice. Way to stick it to the machine, lol!

I am bound and determined to have a decent seven and something tomorrow. I will get up way early and tempo my favorite route. All of my iTunes were lost after the PC when to the shop, but Apple was nice enough to reinstate them--all $400+ worth!!! So this is a week of victory. The trees are cut, the electrical to the pool is chugging along, and I had a fantastic shopping trip with girlfriends over the weekend. SCORE! Size four and sometimes a six, baby. That is, from the chest down. All I know is that "I WILL TAKE IT!!!''.

The man and I had one hell of an S-3 class together this morning. We are setting our sites on the Tour De Pain. I am trying to decide how much I want to push this, since it isn't too far into marathon training. A 4, a 5k and a mile in 48 hours--AUGUST JACKSONVILLE, WHOA!!!! I would much rather be home in South Florida for that...believe it or not, it isn't as hot.

Bob's 42nd went well--it became a huge Guitar Hero fusion, and I kicked Iron Maiden's ass!!! WOOHOO!!! Mommy finally looked liked she could take the kiddos..NOT.

More later. Love to all, and don't fret the moderated comments. This blog is cathartic for me, and I don't require much.