Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Half marathon

I have about 5 min to type this, so it's going to be short . . .

I was hoping to be running ready to train for the "Last Chance Marathon" here on December 31st.  I'm not, or wasn't ready to start in time, so I've been a little bummed.  I really want to work on getting my mileage back up because I like the longer runs vs. the shorter ones. 

Today I got an email from the Nookachamps winter Runs, which I've done the 5k 2 times now.  In 2014 I got 3rd place for my age group.  Well, I forgot they also do a 10k and a half marathon.  As soon as I saw that email I decided I'm doing the half.  Now I'm excited. =)

Monday, October 24, 2016

The elephant

I have been working at my current job for 1 year and 11 months.  It is a 50 min drive south every morning, sometimes less and sometimes more.  I mostly enjoy the drive, especially in the morning.  When I started this job, and commute, I noticed a guy running on a road that runs parallel with the freeway.  I saw him regularly, I don't know if he was there every morning, sometimes I get focused on other things, and forget to look, but I saw him often.  I loved seeing this guy running.  He was not the "typical" runner.  He looked heavier, he wore a big sweatshirt and sweatpants, but he was running. 

I also used to look at the scenery when I was driving.  Washington state is such a pretty place.  On my drive to work I see mountains, I see water, I see fields, I see trees.  It is gorgeous, especially at the right time of year when the sun is coming up on my drive, which is right now.  I would always think about how the people on the road with me are probably not paying any attention to the gorgeous sites as they drive down this very busy freeway.  I told myself I would not take my views for granted as long as I was driving them.

Well, of course I don't notice it everyday.  And living here, the reason it's so green, is because it rains so much of the year.  So in the winter, especially when it's still dark out, I don't notice what's going on around me so much while I drive.  Then spring comes and the sun starts rising again during my drive and I'm enthralled by it all again. 

I don't know when I quit noticing the guy on the side of the road running.  I don't know if he quit running, or if I just got distracted by other things.  Every once in awhile I'd see him and think about him running his road, but I didn't pay much attention to him.  He looks pretty similar to the first time I saw him, same heavy, oversized sweatshirt, same sweatpants. 

I am impressed by him.  I don't know if he quit running for awhile, I don't know if he's running different routes at times, I don't know if I just forgot to look for him.  But I know that I still see him sometimes, I saw him this morning, and he is still running.  That inspires me.  I often wish I could go to his road and run with him. Ask him how far he runs, how often.  Just talk.  Tell him that I see him and that I think his morning runs are amazing.  I can't, I won't, but good job guy on the side of the freeway. 

So there is an elephant in my blog.  My 40th year goal.  The goal I had to run a race a month before my 40th birthday.  I was going strong.  I was running, I was also getting age awards.  And then I sprained my ankle.  I decided I was going to finish my goal anyway, even with a sprained ankle I was still going to complete my goal.  Well, I ran in July, and then in July the race I had planned on doing (on the last weekend of the month) was canceled with no notice.  I ended up running with a friend and counted that as the race, since I had no control over it's cancelation.  But after that I didn't have much motivation to continue with the goal.  I did run in August, but I didn't actually care about it.  By this time I had run 7 5k's and I was pretty burned out with the 5k's, and the races.  So for September I skipped a race.  And I don't really care.  It hasn't bothered me at all.  Besides, if you count all my races between my 39th birthday (Oct. 6) and my 40th, I still did 12 races, but it was not a race a month.  I did 2 last October.

And what did I learn about this?  I don't care for 5k's.  I miss the long runs of last summer.  I am a long distance runner.  Oh, and running a race a month is expensive.  ; )

So I'm going to work on building up my runs again.  I am currently running 3-4 miles 3 times a week and 5 miles for my "long run."  I can't wait to get higher mileage long runs again.  I was so excited in May when I ran my first 9 miles in forever,  And now I'm back to small mileage.  It's okay, I'll get there.  =) 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Birthday weekend

My birthday weekend was nice.  We walked onto the ferry going to Friday Harbor, which is on San Juan Island, so we didn't have a car.  A lot of the things I would have liked to do required a car.  I enjoy going to the county park on San Juan Island and the light house, and there are two camps, the American Camp and English Camp (the San Juan Island chain was disputed territory for a long time and each side had a camp on opposite ends of San Juan Island).  Plus, there are hiking trails that I have enjoyed doing in the past, however, I don't know if I could have convinced Chris to go hiking anyway.  Anyway, all of those things weren't possible without a car.


Ferry crossing
When we got there our room was tiny, seriously, smallest hotel room I've ever seen.  However, we noticed that someone had punched (or something) the bathroom door.  We went to the lobby to let them know about it because we didn't want to be responsible for the damage, and they moved us to a different room, upgrading us about 150%.  Our new room was huge and very nice. 

damaged door
Good thing we got a bigger room, Saturday was a pretty rainy morning so we basically stayed in the room all morning.  I got sucked into a movie marathon on USA network, and ended up watching 2 and a half movies before finally leaving the room.  We walked the "main drag" of Friday Harbor.  We haven't been there for 3 years, and it seems like a lot of the touristy shops closed and became either restaurants or something else.  We went in a few of the stores, but there really didn't seem like there was very many.  Chris's "go-to" store, a hot sauce place, was closed, but he went to a jerky place.   The restaurant that we love to get drinks at, the Crabhouse, was closed for the season, so I didn't even get the San Juan Island Iced Tea that I love.   I had mentioned going to the Whale museum and/or a movie, but because I was lazy we didn't do either one. 
One side of our room
what I did Saturday morning . . .
I had a massage scheduled for the afternoon, and it was the best thing ever.  Have I ever mentioned that I've never had a massage?  At least not one from a professional before.  It was heavenly.  I think I need to go more often than once every 40 years.  ; ) 

Saturday evening we went out for drinks and dinner, and because I'm old now, back to the room fairly early.  We went to one place and really liked the bartender.  She said she was moving upstairs at dinnertime to a sushi place, but since we don't like sushi we went elsewhere for dinner.  Then we went to get a drink from the bartender we liked, but they were "foo-foo" drinks and I wasn't extremely impressed.  I actually liked the boring "dive bar" (if there is such a thing in a tourist town) that we went to Friday night better.  We did get in the hot tub afterwards, but I'm not crazy about really hot hot tubs, so I didn't stay very long.  Sunday was basically getting up, packing, and leaving the hotel.  We hung out at a restaurant waiting for the ferry home. 

It was a short trip, and it was nice to get away for a weekend, but maybe not exactly what I had planned when I asked for it a year ago. I would have preferred to have a car, but we decided to leave it for Damian in case of emergencies. 

I didn't take a ton of pictures, mostly because we didn't do a whole lot.  I did take a million pictures of the ferry crossing, but how boring is that.  =)  The highlight of the trip was the massage.  I need more of those in my life.

I have more things to talk about, not about my birthday weekend, but it will have to wait.  I'm running, and still going to the gym.  Although, last week I was really sick and skipped both more days than not.  I'm feeling better today, went to the gym at lunch and am going to run this evening.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Holy soreness!

I haven't been swimming very much, or at all, lately.  I've been going to the gym during my lunch and with swimming there is no getting around getting my hair wet. It's inevitable (go figure).  When I have to dry and style my hair, it takes me at least 45 min to get ready, so swimming for 30 min and getting ready for 45, that's a lot of time for "lunch."  And while I know there are others in my office that take long lunches, I don't think they are doing it 2-3 times a week.  I do enjoy swimming and I think it's a great exercise, but I don't feel like it's a good thing to be doing for my lunch break. 

I started weight training because I don't have to get my hair wet, which cuts my "get ready" time in half. However, I am super self-conscious about the weights, I don't really know what I'm doing.  Several years ago I joined a gym in Mount Vernon, it was right across from my office and I went right after work.  It had a separate, small room for women only I that was what I used.  It had very few weight machines, but I would do them all.  And I wasn't scared of people watching me and laughing at me.  My current gym does not have that.  All of the weights are right in the open and it's very intimidating.  There are  millions (or it feels like millions) of weight machines, none of which look like the ones I did 10 years ago.  So I googled "weight machine workout" and found a "12 week plan" none of which I am doing, other than the weighs. . .  and no machines, or only a few. 

I started at the end of the week 2 weeks ago with one bicep and back workout, and then waited 3 days before doing it again, so I just repeated that workout again, and then the next day I did triceps, shoulders and chest.  My upper body was a little sore, but not too bad.  Then two days later, last Thursday, I did legs and abs . . . holy cow, I was so sore on Friday. 

I might have been more sore because I ran on Thursday after leg day . . . 4 miles.  Funny thing that happened, I got new shoes, and on my run on Thursday I felt a rub spot in my shoes.  I was pretty annoyed because they are new and I didn't want to have to go buy another pair.  Well, I decided about a block from home to stop and check my shoe, and out fell a barrett.  =)  It had fallen in my shoe after I went to the gym.  That would have been one hell of a rub spot if I had ignored it!!

And then Saturday came, and I was even more sore.  I had problems with stairs, curbs, sitting, standing up, laying down, moving in general.  It is amazing how much you use your quad muscles.  I did not know how much I use them to stabilize myself.  Any time I would sway a little, I would almost fall over. 

I also ran on Saturday, 3 miles.  I figured on Sunday my legs would be okay enough to do a "long" run of 5 miles, which I did, but then yesterday evening my legs were almost as sore as Saturday. 

My long run was nice.  My first 5 miles since I sprained my ankle in May, that's 4 months, or 20 weeks . . . but who's counting?  ; )  So, how is my ankle doing?  Fine.  It has been a little sore here and there, but nothing that concerns me.  Friday was the most sore it's been in a while, and I think that was because of the way I was walking and just generally moving from my sore legs. 

What actually has concerned me the most is a pain I  have in my other heel.  It's on the back of my heel, not on the bottom (plantar faciitis is the bottom).  I've been stretching pretty regularly for the last 3 or more weeks, at least 2-3 times a week. 

This week will be more difficult to do the weights.  I was supposed to go today, but my work schedule didn't allow time.  Tomorrow I'll go, but I'm also doing a cycle class in the afternoon because my sister can't on Wednesday.  The only time I can go on Wednesday is after work, and that is one of the busiest times for the gym and I don't like a lot of people there when I do it.  I think I can go on Thursday, but it's my birthday and I was thinking of skipping.  Friday I have off.

We're going to San Juan Island Friday for the weekend for my birthday.  It's been planned for a year.  =)  Hopefully we'll have decent weather.