Monday, October 30, 2006

Put up or shut up.


I did it.

I signed up for a race.

No, not THAT race! So not ready for that next year.

A race I have done before, just down the street where I live. A nice little local 5K. Just 'cause...well..I kinda miss it.

I miss the little teensy butterflies when you fill out a registration form.

I miss watching very closely what I eat a few days before the race...thinking what will make the best fuel and what will help me go faster.

I miss that feeling you get at the start line--like anything could happen, which is a little scary and a little exciting and it takes your breath away, just for a second. And then, you catch it, because you need every breath you can get.

I miss the little bitty voice in my head that says, for those glorious, sweaty, breathless minutes, "Go...go....GOOOOOOOyoucangofasterthanthis!"

So, in a way, I'm not expecting much out of this little race, as far as my performance is concerned. It will just feel so good to be out there, with a number on my shirt and people around me and the pavement beneath my Brooks Adrenalines.

But in a way, I'm really expecting a lot.

I'm expecting to have a little excitement back.

Just a little teensy bit of what I felt almost 2 months ago. If I can JUST. HAVE. A. LITTLE. BIT.

Then it will be so worth it.

Friday, October 27, 2006

DING! That's the end of round one, folks

I stayed at school until 5:30 today...long after the kids went home and the parking lot, despite the pouring rain, was starting to fill up with cars for the evening's football game. But I needed to get lots done, since the quarter ended today. And I did it, alone, in my quiet room, surrounded by my students' models of the Taj Majal and Zen Gardens, and I am happy to say it's all done.

8 1/4 years of teaching. How the heck did that happen?

Yesterday, I met an old friend on my 6 mile tempo run....



IT'S BEEN SOOOOOO LONG! I briefly saw you when I did the Old Oak Run with TriAl, and other than that, what's it been...a year? Probably!

I hope Mister Seven and I get to know each other much better, and maybe I even get to see the vagabond that occasionally passes me in the night (or shall I say, morning, since that's when 5Ks are)...


She can be a real beyotch to me, so I don't see her very often. Hopefully I can see her more and actually intentionally see her--not accidentally run into her whe I don't mean to.

Tomorrow is my friend's wedding..she's a Soler who's marrying another Soler! How fun is THAT? There are quite a few Soler couples! So cute. Why didn't I start running when I was single for crying out loud? I was barely tri-ing when I was single, and I was way to shy to talk to all the hot tri studs.

I'm serious. I actually am quite shy when it comes to that stuff. Really!

No, REALLY! Boys didn't talk to me until I was, like 25.

(Okay, maybe I'm exaggerating a little bit)

Then, Sunday morning I'll be hitting the trails with Kelly, who's doing IMFL next week! It's her last hour on the BEAUTIFUL trails with the yellowest-orangest trees you've ever seen. I'm so pumped!

I can't WAIT TO
A) Watch IMW on OLN/VS tomorrow after I tape it and
B) Watch Kahuna, TriMama, and all my other buddies online next Sunday!

I am so loving the run right now. I need to sign me up for a 5K or something to test out these legs. Feelin' good, feelin' good.


(I don't know why I just typed that)

OK--Time to make a fire and get caught up on LOST. I am such a Jack Shephard fan. Been a fan ever since the old "Party of Five" days, for those who know what that show was.

Good luck to Rae, Mouse, and everyone else racing this weekend!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Two things that made me smile in the past 48 hours

1) A six mile, EASY run, with all the orange and yellow and purple trees to guide me. But the best part of my EASY run, was looking down at my Garmin and seeing an average pace of 9:14.

I'm SO back.

2) I stayed up late to grade some tests. Not fun. Today, a cool little skateboarder kid came to my desk at the beginning of class and said, "You graded our tests ALREADY?" In an effort to make a joke, I replied sarcastically, "Of course I did. I'm just that good." He walked away and said to no one in particular, almost under his breath, "Well, you ARE an Ironman finisher...."

Guilty as charged.

And now, I'm off for another run.

Monday, October 23, 2006

A Picture Tells a Thousand Miles

So, I will let the pictures do most of the talking.

Crazy week at work. Lots of insanity.

Friday-stayed late to help a few kids. Came home. Ran 6 miles and felt great. Packed, and got on plane. Listened to InTransit Duo on the ride and read Women's Health. Tried to chill out a bit.


Landed in Chicago and Jacks picked me up--and instantly the stress was gone and I remembered why I was here--to spend time with my good friend in one of my favorite cities and do one of my favorite things to do: cheer someone on in a marathon.

We slept in and relaxed Saturday morning and caught up. She's one of those friends that you might not see for months, but the second you're together you are laughing and joking about old times like it was five minutes ago.

Like it was that day that we threw furniture off the porch and drew all over our house with a Sharpie. Or she tackled me in my pajamas in the snow as we rolled down the hill at 15 E Vine.

One of those friends.

So the next day, she started to get ready.Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

We laid everything out--I brought a race belt for her and she got her GU's ready.
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Then we went to Ranalli's to have dinner with her family, which was so much fun. Of course, she took me to Lululemon to get some AWESOME clothes that I probably shouldn't have bought but oh well the store's not around here so it's OK.
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And then, it was time for bed. She was nervous but ready. "Chomping at the bit," I said, "that's how you're supposed to feel according to my coach. That means you tapered well." She just wanted to get it going already. We went to sleep, and then it was 5am and she left. I headed to just before mile 5 around 8 so I'd be sure to see everyone, and look for Mouse. It was very chilly--38 is what they were saying on the news, and a bit windy. Not raining though, and for that I was very happy. These guys can run in this--they will be fine.

Soon, I saw the wheelchair athletes and they were inspiring.
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And then, after several rounds of phone tag, there she was....MOUSE!

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We jumped around a bit and screamed like freak shows. It was cool. We tried really hard to look for Zeke and Walchka, but we kept getting dizzy by all the people flying by us.

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We managed to see E-Speed and screamed our butts off--she smiled and waved so we knew she heard us!

I was on the lookout for a bright pink headband and pink shirt...and then I saw her!


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She smiled and threw her long sleeve shirt at me! She must be feeling great, I thought!

Mouse and I practically bounced a few blocks with excitement to get to Mile 10. We were so freaking pumped to see each other and our friends. Plus it kept us warm. (Bouncing, that is.)

We saw E-Speed again and screamed our lungs out for her! She saw us too and waved again. Then I saw Jacks again, too! She waved and all you can really see here is half her smile and her arms!

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She was looking REALLY strong! Mouse and I were freezing so we tried to go to Starbucks for coffee. The line was insanely long. We wanted to see the Running Jayhawk again so we decided to go to....I'm ashamed to type this...McDonald's.


But they do have good coffee....right? So we warmed up a bit and chatted--what a cool chick. She will rock the Deeeeetroit marathon next week, I just know it.

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Okay. Time to see if we can find Running Jayhawk. We managed to cross the street somehow in the sea of people and THERE SHE WAS!

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OK. Gotta get on the L. Brown line to Green Line to 35th and Bronzeville, to meet my girl at mile 23 so I can run with her the last few miles. We got there and cheered and cheered and cheered. I barely have a voice today.

It was awesome.

You could start to see it in people's eyes--that they knew they were in the home stretch. I saw a guy with an Ironman Wisconsin shirt on and said, "Go, Ironman Wisconsin! Go....WAIT....

*takes off running, Mouse watches, confused*


It was him!

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RUN BUBBA RUN! SOMEHOW I FOUND HIM IN 40,000 PEOPLE???!!! I screamed my head off for the 587th time.

The REALLY crazy part? He was RIGHT in front of Jaclyn! I hugged Mouse bye again, and took off!

"How are you feeling? You are looking so good! You look strong! Almost there!" I said. I said about everything I could think of to make her smile.

"Do you need anything?"

"A new pair of legs" was all she could get out with a smile.


And her and Bubba stopped for some water--I mean, the irony, people?! One of my best friends and best IronFriends, running together and they didn't even know it!

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Jacks and her friend Mike had been together the whole day.

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Here is her Running Club's Hi-Five Stand!

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Quinn, who was running 17 in preparation for the Miami Half Ironman, grabbed my camera and snapped this one.

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On this stretch, the wind was pretty bad and the crowd was thinning out. I told her just to follow me and we'd get there together.

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We ran side by side and kept on going. And then, she smiled and said, "Turn the corner and up the hill!" softly, but with excitement. I could see it in her eyes--that look, you know, when you know you're going to make it. When you know you've DONE it, even though it's not done.

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She ran across the bridge with a huge smile on her face.

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I got my last glimpse--and picture--of my IronFriend Bubba, running with Jacks as they made the final turn.

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There it was: the finish line. She picked up her stride and her smile got even bigger. "You've GOT this!" I screamed! "GO, GIRL!"

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And she made it, with her hands thrown up in the air and a huge smile on her face.


First marathon.


I was so happy to be with her and tried to get out of the way to let her have her finish line. She worked so hard to get there.

I did snap this picture though.

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She got her medal and we found her family, who were so proud of her! Hugs and smiles were everywhere. We headed towards the Bean so we could grab a cab to Barleycorn for some food, but not before I got to see Walchka and give him a hug for about 2.3 minutes before I had to take off! What a great guy.

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He ran a solid race and was all smiles.

And then, before I knew it, I was back on a cab back home. What a day. What a rush.

I think that's my next thing. I love running so much. I really do. I think I really will make my next goal breaking 4 hours.

I think I have it in me.

And now I've got another friend along for the ride.

As I stared out the window on Lakeshore Drive and saw the lights in the city and the sun going down, I got a little wistful. I almost lived here. I love Chicago. I applied to some schools there but really would have loved to live in the city, and that's just not easy to do on a first year teacher's salary. So I didn't.

But a little part of me wonders...what might my life have been like? What would have been different? It's like one of my favorite songs, Dancing Nancies.

"Could I have been anyone other than me?"

Probably. It would make an interesting story I bet. So many choices in life, one little choice could change everything. What college you go to--I never would have met Jacks if I didn't go to Miami. What city you move to when you're 22. Who knows?

I got on that plane and went home. It felt good to be home after my weekend, but what an amazing weekend. I am so lucky to have such a great friend. She got me through Ironman Wisconsin, so if I made her first marathon weekend just a teensy bit better than I can know I did my job.

And to all the friends I met that weekend and the ones who ran by me on that course, thanks for making it so fun to watch.

Enjoy your recovery, and for me, well, I'm thinking about what's next.

A little of what could have happened.

And a lot more about what's to come.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

So freaking awesome.

Gotta get on a plane here soon........MUCH more to come....I took 84 pictures!

But I just wanted to say CONGRATS to my girl Jaclyn, who did her first marathon today in 4:08!!!

Also to:

Zeke--sub 3!
Running-Jayhawk--got some great pics of her! She looked great and kicked butt!
Walchka--kicked some butt too!
E-speed--the name says it all!
Run Bubba Run--I can't even freaking believe I got to run with you at the end! HOW FUN!

And to Mouse---who was just as loud as me cheering people on, and it was SOOOOOOOOO fun to hang out with her!

Okay, if I don't get on the L soon I'm in big trouble....

To all others who finished Chicago today, GREAT job and I can't WAIT for the reports!

The Marathon Junkie,

Thursday, October 19, 2006

When all else fails

When all else fails, I am trying to remember that I trained for an Ironman for 9 months, and for those 9 months, I managed to find time to work, eat, sleep, and train from 8-19 hours a week consistently.

I'm trying to remember that because I am buried under a sea of 78 projects--although they are very creative and really good and it excites me to see what the kids come up with, at the same time, grading 78 projects and 78 corresponding papers is a little overwhelming. It looks like a history book threw up in my classroom right now.

And next week, I have to give tests in each class, grade them, and grade everything else that's piled from this week, and get my grades for all students entered in the system.

Ah, yes. The end of the grading period. Those that are educators out there know what I mean.

When all else fails, I try not to think of what January-August might bring, as we are transitioning a bit and still trying to find what's the next best step. And it's a bit scary to think of what we might be doing, or how we pay for it, etc. etc. etc.

So when all else fails I remember that somehow I managed those 9 months.

So I've been trying to get a few workouts in, because I need them more this week than ever. I tried some speedwork for the first time since, oh, June. 800 repeats, TriSaraTops. TriSaraTops, 800 repeats. Nice to meet you.

And it didn't go so bad. One was under 3:40. The rest weren't, but were close, and all things considered, I'll take that for this week.

When all else fails, I remember what I did on September 10th and how I got there, and I don't sweat it.

When I talked to my friend today, and I realized how much she needs me, and needs her friends and family right now, I dropped what I was doing and dropped my workout so I could try to help. And I feel bad--like I didn't really help, and wasn't of much use--but when all else fails, I remember that sometimes it takes a long time and a lot of patience to make a difference, so I will keep trying and trying and trying. And I know how strong she is and how strong I am and I know we'll get through this together.

As I sit here, completely overwhelmed by numerous responsibilities I have this week--as a friend, as a wife, as an educator--I think about what really matters. What really matters is their projects might take a few days. And that's okay. Because tomorrow I will get on a plane, and repay a favor that meant more to me (and continues to mean more to me) than I can really explain. I will be there as my friend Jaclyn takes on her first Marathon in Chicago--because she was with me every step of the way in Madison, consistently checking on me when I was overwhelmed with training and life, sending me cards just to let me know that I was inspiring her.

Me? Inspiring her? It still seems crazy.

So I will be there for her. And I hope that I can give her as much support as she did for me that day. And I will do whatever I can to make sure she has an amazing, amazing race day. No matter what happens.

Because when all else fails, you remember what's important--your friends, your love, your family. You remember what Ironman taught you. To eliminate everything else except these things, because you have to or you just won't make it even to the starting line.

And so that's what you do.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Dear Bella,

It was my pleasure to meet you yesterday.
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Actually, um, we need to talk about that.

I was just innocently starting out on a lovely 8 mile run. A loop I haven't done in a while, with lots of quiet little sidestreets and nice tree-lined roads. And just when my Garmin said "0.15" on my odometer, I passed Nasty German Shepard's house, like I usually do. Nasty (we can call her Miss Jackson) was out, as usual. Now, Miss Jackson and I have an understanding. I run on the other side of the street, which is clearly NOT her turf. She barks like hell and snarls at me, running up and down her yard, but does NOT cross the invisible fence line. Scares the bejeezus out of me, every single time, but does NOT cross the invisible fence line.

You see, Bella? Apparantly, you didn't get the memo.

You, my friend, appear in the yard as well. You are quite a stunning Rottweiler. What are you, about 75? 85 pounds? Very impressive.

Anyway, your idiotic owner must have decided it was a good idea to:

A) leave you in the front yard unattended, and since you are not a regular, you don't understand electric fences
B) tied you to some freaking tent stake with a ROPE. A small, piece of twine that I might use to tie up my newspaper.

So, it was to my dismay that you decided I was somehow invading your turf, and you SNARLED, IMMEDIATELY BROKE YOUR ROPE, AND CHASED ME.

Now, Bella, that just ain't cool.

I love dogs. Really, I do. And I'm not crazy about big dogs, but as long as they are cool and happy, then I'm down with 'em.

You were SO not cool and happy.

I really would like an apology.

Miss Jackson just stared at you like she was jealous that she didn't get to rip me to shreds herself. Luckily, I just so happened to see a white picket fence that I jumped over to avoid being your prey, but not before I bashed my leg into the pointy top, tearing my tights and leaving a throbbing bruise several shades of purple, green, and yellow.

I do want to thank you, however, for not jumping that fence. I'm not sure why you didn't, because you could have, but I'm quite certain that would have been the end of me.

What really bothers me, Bella, is the way the neighbor whose door I knocked on, and how your owner reacted. I mean, the neighbor laughed and said, "Oh, Bella got loose again?"

Again? Bella, really. How many times does a pissed off 75 pound Rottweiler really need to get lose before someone realizes THAT MIGHT BE A LITTLE DANGEROUS?

And as I stood there, throbbing leg and a few tears kind of falling down my cheeks as I tried to breathe, breathe, breathe again, your owner WAVED at me and smiled?


So, really Bella, I ain't mad at cha. I'm a little stunned and perplexed as to how this happened and the idiocy of your owner, or babysitter as it appears to be. I really just would like a promise that it wouldn't happen again. I know you could eat me and my 18 pound pug for a snack, and I respect that. I will not invade your turf, but please don't assume your turf extends a quarter mile down the street.

And while we're at it, I did finish my run. A little out of breath and a lot with a throbbing leg. My leg hurts like the dickens. Thanks for nothing, beeyotch. (Literally.)


Friday, October 13, 2006


OK, now first of all....

I guess I shoulda explained WHAT cornhole is.

First of all, it is NOT:

1. Dirty or perverted.
2. Apparantly well-known outside of Ohio.

It IS:
1. Ridonkulously fun.
2. Played often at parties in Ohio.
3. Better after a few beers.

Here is a site on Cornhole so you can SEE I ain't makin' this up. It has its roots in the 'Nati, aka Cinci-nasty, aka where I spent 5 years of my life and went to college at good ol' Mother Miami. I remember playing cornhole at my little bro's house he shared with a bunch of friends. It's a simple, Midwestern thing, but hella fun. Kinda like me.

So that should clear up any confusion! :)

So yesterday we decided, after many friends called, to just DO the s'mores night anyway! I mean, we're hearty Cleveland Folk! We put a damn hat on and still make a fire and HAVE FUN! And that's exactly what we did.

Photobucket - Video and Image HostingMy insanely cute niece, enjoying her very first s'more!

I'm glad we did it--it turned out to be a cold (33 F) evening, but a beautiful one, and we had about 15 friends and family come over throughout the evening to enjoy s'mores, some hot apple cider, some snacks that TriAl brought over, and some beers. A good time was had by all!Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

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My adventurous friend, Sarah, is always up for big plans. We backpacked the Grand Canyon together last April, whitewater rafted in WV in 2005, and now our new plan is to hike the Inca Trail!

My niece, sis-in-law, and me smile while Cort tries to stay warm in the background!Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Here's me and the awesome TriAl, sportin' his Oakland A's hat...Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

So now it's time for the weekend...looks like it's gonna be a chilly one, so I am going to try and get my workouts in dressed very warm! Never fear, week it will be back in the 60s. Gotta love this schitzo-Cleveland weather. At least we didn't get a foot of snow dumped on us like poor Buffalo, NY!

Moral of the story: don't let a little cold scare ya. Friends, family, s'mores, and yummy drinks will warm you right up.

Thursday, October 12, 2006


Snow today.


It's October 12! This is pretty rare. My students were FREAKING OUT about it today. You'd think they never saw the stuff.

Just some flurries...nothing sticking. But it sorta ruined my plans to make s'mores tonight and play some cornhole.


So....I'm feelin' pretty good. First week of yoga and it was fun. Kicked my butt though. Just when I think I'm all strong and stuff. My upper body's gotten a little pansy on me. So, hopefully I'll start weights in the next week or two, and begin swimming more regularly to keep my "guns."

(I don't really have big guns. I just like to pretend I do.)

Running's been OUTSTANDING, if I do say so myself! I've done nothing longer than 7 miles, but I've been managing to go at a nice little clip and tried to do some tempo work. Figure I might as well do a few 5K's this November, and maybe December if I have time. That will give me something to fixate--I mean, focus--on.

I have also been appointed to the Cleveland Tri Club's position of Secretary! I'm pretty pumped about this! Hopefully I can get caught up on biz-nass fast and not be all, "Huh?" It's kind of exciting that just a few short years ago, I remember emailing the President of the club to see if I was too newbie-ish to even join. I'm lucky to have such a big and supportive club in the area.

Can I even explain how EXCITED I am to go to Chicago to watch Jacks run her first marathon next weekend?


I can't. Sorry.

You'll have to just trust me that I'm so excited I'm literally bouncing off the walls with excitement. Matt and Mugsy think I'm weird. Well, weirder than usual at least.

There's quite a big blogger contingency heading to the Windy City, methinks! Zeke, E-speed, Walchka, and Running Rabbit come to mind...who am I missing? Let me know! I would love to try and see everyone but I know there's, oh, about 40,000 freaking runners. I plan on running with Jacks somehow, most likely towards the know how it goes! That's about when I start hallucinating and taking random candy from strangers.

Well, that's what I did at the Flying Pig 2 years ago at least. Somewhere around mile 22-23, some random dude on the side of the road had a whole cookie sheet of gummy bears, and I ran up to him, HUGGED HIM in all my sweaty and nasty glory, (?!) and took a big handful.

So, maybe it's just me that does strange things in the last few miles....

So, that's about all for now...MAJOR good luck and go-kick-some-ASS wishes going out to DaisyDuc and Papa Louie who are going to ROCK the Columbus Marathon, and to TriEric and his wife Aimee, who will do the same to the Baltimore Half Marathon and Marathon!

I'm OUT!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Windy Glasses

When I was a kid, I liked to make stuff up a lot.

Who doesn't, you know?

When I was 4 or 5, I had a "pet squirrel" in my backyard that I named Drippy. My mom didn't really have the heart to tell me it wasn't the same squirrel out there every day. I'd just talk to him in like we were best buds.

I had, and still like to think I have, a "dessert compartment" in my stomach. Like, when I was all full of lima beans and meatloaf and stuff, I would conveniently be able to "find" room in my compartment for ice cream. "But you're so FULL!" my dad would say.

Oh no I'm not...I have the dessert compartment.

These are my Windy Glasses.
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Windy Glasses, of course, are meant to keep your eyes warm. That is so that you can stay outside in the snow and rain and general mess longer. This way, you can make snow angels and jump in puddles and "you're just fine see because your eyes are warm."

So now I think I have my Strong Shoes.

These shoes are looking a little ratty, but you need to trust me here.

They have special powers.

(I'm serious.)

See, these shoes have been on my feet since the end of June. They've seen rain and heat and cold and mud. They carried me on my hilly training runs at the Hinckley Hills. They were with me when I ran on campus in Wisconsin in July. They were with me when I finished my second half-ironman in New York. They were on my feet for 26.2 miles at the end of Ironman Wisconsin, and now when I put them on THINGS just HAPPEN.

I put them on, and I remember what I've done in these shoes.

And for some reason, I just get excited. I might feel tired...maybe I had a long day at work...and I come home and put on my shoes and I'm STRONGER. And it's go time, baby.

Tuesday, for the first time in a long time, they took me to a group run. I was a little worried that I might be tired and slow and not able to even keep up with my friends, but I put the shoes on and thought, "Nope. I'm gonna be just fine."

And I was. 6.5 miles later and lots of smiles with my friends, and I felt like myself again. I enjoyed the sunset over Lake Erie and the crisp air, and saw the leaves turning even more red this week as the stars started to peek out in the dark blue sky.

Stronger. That's how I felt.

That's how I feel.

I felt it on Thursday, when I nervously set out to try my first tempo run since IM MOO. I thought I'd just try two miles and hope to hit my tempo pace, and see how it goes...and when I checked my splits I was exactly 11 seconds faster than my tempo pace on BOTH miles.

I felt it today, when I set out to run along the road that follows Lake Erie, and felt warmth of the "Indian Summer" day on my skin, and noticed the leaves changing even more. Maybe it was because I ran into friends. Maybe it was because I've gotten to see my friends and family more in the past 4 weeks. Maybe it's because I'm still riding a high from the finish a teensy bit.

(Or maybe it's the shoes.)

For whatever reason, I finished my run and felt so strong...and looked down to see the fastest pace for 5 miles that I've done in a long time.

Those Windy Glasses let me stay outside a little bit longer. That dessert compartment got me a little more ice cream.

My Strong Shoes aren't new and shiny, but they have taken me some pretty amazing places.

And I know they have a few more miles left in 'em.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

So organized, yet so not.

I forgot what it's like to have free time. It's really strange, and for some reason, I feel a bit unsettled.

I am back on my scheduled chore days. Yes, I am just that anal. I mop on Monday, vaccum every third day, dust every Tuesday, etc. Although, Matt is still doing the laundry and all the outside work--he loves landscaping--which is great, since I hate doing laundry and I think I could possibly kill a dandilion without even trying. :) I sort of miss having an excuse to not do chores.

Monday night me and my 2 boys (Matt and Mugsy) made s'mores since it was too cold and wet (AGH! Madison flashback!) to do it Saturday night with friends. Mmmmm. So good.

I've been able to get to school early and help some students and run a few meetings with the clubs I advise. No problem. No wet hair, not frantically running in 5 minutes late with excuses.

I am totally on top of my lesson plans and all my papers to grade. I am getting them all done at school, and I even have time to make some parent phone calls, look for new lessons, etc.

I've read a few magazines. Runner's World (there is a HOT picture of Lance and Matthew McConaughey, my ex-boyfriend along with Eddie Vedder, running shirtless. Shoulda been the cover.), Cooking Light, Outside, Women's Health.

I've been reading up on Hawaii and especially Maui, with a few books my mom and Kelly gave me. Trying to think of fun things to do--trying some mountain biking and surfing are high on my list.

I've been listening to some podcasts (big fans of InTransit Duo! Check 'em out!) , going to bed on time, waking up at 6:30. Running up to 6-7 miles at a nice easy pace, calling some friends. Making some new recipes.

But, I feel SO disorganized.

I haven't been this "together" in 10 months. And I sort of miss running around like crazy. And swimming and biking around, too.

I know, I know...I've got plenty of time. I've got a few 5K's lined up to motivate me to try and get my speed back, since it's been on vacation all year.

But I can't stop thinking about IMFL and now even IMKY in 08. TWO YEARS AWAY! Seriously. I gotta cut this out.

I can't stop writing to my good buddy TriShannon in Denver, who just signed up for IM MOO, her first...and I love seeing how she's going through all the same stuff I was last year at this time.

I can't seem to stop reading blogs from JT and Jen about their IM training, because I'm so JEALOUS. I'm jealous they get to have their first IM in a few months. I'm jealous they get to run around like crazy and train so hard they fall asleep at night before their heads hit the pillow.

To me, that day reminds me a little of my wedding day. I planned for 9 months (actually, for my wedding I planned for 8!), thought about details, tried to get as ready as I could, and then the actual day was a blur of friends and family and excitement and eventually euphoria at the end. And in 15:32, all that planning was over.

My time obviously wasn't considered that "fast," as the winning female was 10:01. But it was quite possibly the fastest 15:32 I think I've ever experienced. And I think I sort of miss my fast-paced, slightly insane, tornado-style life I had for a little while there.

Who knew?


On an exciting note, my parents came over Tuesday after I ran with the Solers and surprised me with my version of an M-Dot Tattoo. I will post a pic later. It's awesome. I heart it.

OK, I'm gonna go now and grade some papers. No wait--I already did that.


Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Lawwww'ville, Loooeyville, Lowville?

Is this for REAL?

If so, I may be heading there in '08....maybe not Florida! It's a heck of a lot closer...although probably more humid, if that's possible.

And I don't know how I feel about swimming in the Ohio River. And I train in Lake Erie, people. Ew.

Hmmmmm....somethin' to think about!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

A few goals, perhaps

So I think it's about time I write down some goals, a la TriTeacher. I am sort of a person who feels a bit lost without goals. Now, a lot could change, but if all goes well next year, here are my goals:

1. PR in a 5K early in the season. This way, I can do some speed work and tempo stuff and not have to worry about screwing up marathon training by pushing too hard. So I might try to dust off the ol' 5K time (which was back in 2003! And not even very fast! Yikes!) and see what I can do.

2. Hit 1:24(or less!) in the 100 yards free. I'm close, but haven't really done it yet by my watch at least.

3. Pick a HIM in mid-late summer, and try to beat my current PR of 6:34. That 6:34 would have been a lot better if I hadn't of had to DEATH MARCH the half marathon. Stupid, stupid me who didn't know about that little thing called HYDRATION on the bike. Ha I know....I think I'm capable of closer to 6. Maybe say 6:10 to shoot for? I think that's reasonable.

4. Chicago Marathon next year, or another fall marathon. Break 4 hours. This could be tough. But, again, I think I could do it. Current PR is 4:18 in Cincy and I felt like I held back a little because of the hills--which, for the record, ARE NOT as bad as everyone makes them out to be!

Basically, this year was all about endurance. I think I'd like next season to be all about speed. I think if I space out these goals enough I can make them happen.

So what do I need to do to get there....hmmmm...

1. More speed focused sets in the pool. Still do the 500s and 1000s from time to time, but I would like to start doing some hard 50s and bring back the hard 100s that I phased out on the last month or so of training.

2. Lift and strengthen. Work on my power for the bike. Hit the hills next summer lots. Do some sprints and stuff--try to head to New Vision Cycling Wednesday nights to work on this, now that I won't have the 6-7 hour rides to worry about!

3. Consistent mileage for my weekly runs. Lots of tempo runs, since I tend to FIZZLE my SHIZZLE out fast on the short races. ie. My favorite thing to do seems to be to run the first mile sub-7, no matter how much I THINK I'm holding back, and then DIE on the last mile-mile and a half. I seriously think it's harder to run a smart 5K than a marathon. My 5K mile splits are hilarious.

SO--at the MOMENT, these are my goals. Funny, because an 8:30 mile right now feels like death. I guess that's because I did an Ironman 3 weeks ago or something. But I will slowly build up the base here over the next month or two, and maybe start doing some intensity come late-November and early December. Coach Angela says not to lift until November. Bummer...I was kinda hoping to get started earlier than that. But, I will defer to her. 9 Ironmans means you kinda know your stuff.

Whew. OK. I feel better now that I wrote that down. Goals! I have goals! Yay!

But, um a LOT could change between now and next year at this time. So, all goals are subject to DRAMATICALLY change.

But hey, it's fun to think about the possibilities, you know?