Lights Out

When I woke up and took the dogs out to potty at 6 am, I knew this day was going to be steamy.

We ate a light breakfast, fed and walked the dogs. I was very tired after walking them so running 7 miles wasn’t looking very fun…but I did.

The first couple of miles went well and then came the hills…and the heat…and the bitching from Kevin! I hope he doesn’t read this post! 🙂

I don’t know why he goes with me anyway. I’m happy that he runs with me on long runs but he only wants to do so much and I have to push it each Saturday on the long runs.

I did finish my 7 miles but at a slow pace. I took water and the cooling towel and maybe it helped a bit. I was very tired afterward but after a shower, a short nap and something to eat, I felt good.

My big toes feel like hell. Left toenail is already black and I’m sure the right one is about to be. I lost the left big toenail last year after my first HM. I just hope they come off and heal before the marathon in Oct.

I plan a separate page on my blog “1st Marathon Training” beginning June 16th to chronicle my marathon training, feelings, nutrition and notes about how the training is going. Rest day will be scheduled on June 16 and June 17 will start the run training for anyone interested.

We met up with Allison, Daniel and Sadie for lunch at Wildflower in CWE. Daniel came home with us and spending the night.

There have been bad storms in the city all day. I saw runners getting caught out in the rain and I was a bit jealous.

I ate healthy most of the day until after 10 pm. I should NEVER wait so late to eat dinner but we were visiting at m son’s house for a while I ate a hotdog and 2 big pieces of baklava for well over 2000 calories today! I burned 1000 calories on my run. I had a terrible eating day 😦

When we got home from visiting the my son’s house, our entire block had no electricity! The dogs had been in the pitch dark for 2 hours. Storms scare my dogs and storms in the dark had them petrified. They will have nightmares about this night!

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~Stay Cool~

Running Hot

I worked my partial day today. The more that I work with people, the more I love my dogs….

I was home by noon. It was already hot and humid. I debated all the way home whether to run, not run, run on the road, run with the dogs or run on the treadmill. This was what I was thinking the entire way on my 40 minute drive home from work.

I felt skinny all day and I weighed when I got home. I am not one who weighs anymore but I just wanted to today. I was about 2 lbs less than my last weight! Yeah! I was doing a happy dance. 🙂

The dogs were begging for a walk and I needed a run or I knew I would not enjoy the rest of my day. So I ran with Peyton and Eli.

It was not bad. I ran a 3.1 mile in 33 and some change minutes but that wasn’t bad due to the heat and Eli had to stop to poop and Peyton had to stop and potty a couple of times. By mile 2, I was dragging both the dogs…did I mention it was hot and humid? HA! Those dogs were tired as hell for the rest of the afternoon and I got some laundry and housework done.

Tired and Waiting on Daddy
Tired and Waiting on Daddy

I enjoyed the run pretty much and I sweated so I don’t know what’s going on with that but I liked it!

Check that sweat! :-)
Check that sweat! 🙂

Maybe I’m learning to run well in heat? We’ll see….7 miles in Forest Park in the morning.

I’m all packed and about to make that 2 hour drive to St. Louis.

I just remembered that we left our air conditioning off when we left the apartment to come back home a couple of weeks ago. It should be nice and warm when we get there.  I see a couple of cold ones in my future tonight when I get in town in an outdoor setting where our dogs can join us. They love getting that attention from others. Eli usually acts badly around other dogs. He’s not mean but he just sits and barks…and loudly!

I can’t wait to see my Daniel and Sadie tomorrow afternoon.

I signed up for Stridebox.com for those runner’s packages for $15 a month. I’m like a kid at Christmas!

~Meet Me In St. Louie, Louie~ 

The Monster in My Basement

It was a hot, steamy Missouri afternoon…..should be the first line in some novel! 🙂

I did not sleep not 1 minute last night and I do not know why. I think I was still feeling the endorphins from my 4 mile run which almost killed me! 🙂 Whatever the reason, I did not sleep. I wasn’t tired, in pain, anything on my mind or the like. I was just awake. I even got out of bed at 4:30 am with no problem.

I took a short nap at my little park for about 10 minutes at lunch time. I always enjoy doing that when I can.

It’s 9pm now and I’m laying out watching the Cardinals vs Giants and still not that tired.

I did something today that I almost NEVER do….I ran on my treadmill. I tried to talk myself out of running today because of the temperatures but I finally decided I’d run for 3 miles on the monster in my basement. And…..I had a great run! I maintained a 7:30 pace for most of my run which is fast for me. I sweated so much and I experienced that runner’s high quite a bit on the run. Did you hear that? I SWEATED! I actually loved it! I finished, showered and couldn’t feel better.

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I almost talked myself out of my run tonight.

I am more hopeful tonight about my marathon training because maybe I can get some good training by running on it periodically when the weather is not good outside. I won’t be able to run often in the mornings (except weekends) due to how early I already have to get up for work.

I can use my treadmill for tempo, speed and use the presets for mountain runs etc. I’ll use it to my advantage.

We are headed back to St. Louis tomorrow afternoon to our apartment and I need to see Daniel and Sadie. 🙂

I’ll do my regular 7 mile run at Forest Park Saturday morning before the St. Louie heat sets in.

My roses are starting to bloom and when I got home from work to let the dogs potty….I saw my Tropicana roses looked beautiful. That always makes me happy. 🙂

My Tropicana
My Tropicana

Throw Back Thursday! Me in high school 🙂

#tbt   Me, a senior in High School.
#tbt Me, a senior in High School.

 ~Rock On~

It’s the Journey….Right?

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I’m from the south (Tennessee) so heat and humidity and I are not strangers.

It’s 143 days, 10 hours and 30 minutes until I attempt to run for 26.2 miles in the Rock ‘n Roll Marathon in St. Louis, MO on Oct 19.

Oct 19, 2014
Oct 19, 2014

And today….I struggled to get in 4 miles. My first 2 miles were good and I was fairly proud of how easy it was feeling even though it was hot, humid and no breeze. At one point I got on the MKT trail and had to stop twice to get rocks out of my shoes, once because a deer ran in front of me and scared me shitless…..and I met up with a couple of fairly steep inclines.

For 2 miles….I suffered and couldn’t get how tired I was and how heavy my legs felt off my mind.

The endura cooling towel did help today. I’d like the headband.

Why did I sign up for a marathon that forced me to train in the summer? Am I nuts? Am I wanting to die? Am I wanting to fail? 🙂

I finished my run and at least I’m glad I did it…but I am now doubting my ability to complete it.

I know that I will have to start getting up at 4 am during the weekdays to run some of my days and that will make it better, but on my Wednesday 6,7,8 mile days…that ain’t a going to happen!

I’ll work it out and I have read from many marathon runners that the hard part is not the marathon, it’s the training. It will be a huge challenge for me but I knew that.

Like many things in life, it’s the journey not the destination that shows you who you are…..

~Journey On~

 

Give It a Rest, Runner Girl


I am high-strung and uptight lately…..

I am learning how to do longer runs but I am not learning how to do rest days. I should be getting 2 per week but I rarely do.

On one of my down days, I mow the lawn, weed-eat and pull weeds from butterfly gardens and walk the dogs a little longer but that’s usually all I can tolerate.

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Last Monday I took a rest day but was anxious all night and didn’t sleep well. One of the reasons may be that I am wanting to lose about 10 more lbs before Oct 19 marathon. The other reason is that if I don’t run…I don’t feel like I am doing the right things in order to finish that 26.2.

Ten ways to know if you need rest in this article – “Time to Rest?”

I am already training at a level that is a few weeks ahead of the structured training from Hal Higdon’s – 1st Time Marathon. Below are my training schedules for anyone bored enough to be interested! 🙂


Charlotte's June Training
Charlotte’s June Training
Charlotte's July Training
Charlotte’s July Training
Charlotte's August Training
Charlotte’s August Training
Charlotte's September Training
Charlotte’s September Training
Charlotte's October Training
Charlotte’s October Training

So for 3 weeks or so, I am going to concentrate on trying to lose ~8 – 10 lbs. I know that will make it easier for me to finish. At the 3rd week of July, I should be ready to progress to those extra miles.

So I’ll start taking my rest days, do my cross-training days, lower my calories a bit, eat healthier, cut back on wine…..and prepare to put myself through so much abuse that only someone crazy would do that.

Calling a runner “crazy” is a compliment 🙂

~Rest Up~

 

Soldiers and Kids

I am loving this extra day off work but I do think it’s important to remember why we are off and able to spend the day doing things with our family that we enjoy.

Kevin is busy smoking/grilling a pork butt for our dinner tonight.

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Peyton and Eli are very happy to help him! 🙂

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I (with Kevin) did my annual 3.4  mile run through our local Memorial Cemetery this morning.

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Several years ago in 2010, I took Daniel to the cemetery when he was just 3 years old. Some old Veterans were at the entrance handing out small flags for people who come in. One of the old men gave Daniel a small flag.

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We strolled the beautiful and immaculately kept cemetery looking at various grave markers for military men and women. We came upon one and for some reason, there was no flag or anything on his grave. (Robert D. Browning – US Army WWII, Korea, Vietnam born Aug 20, 1927 and died March 1, 1988). I told Daniel that he needed to put the flag in the ground at his grave. Daniel did not want to give away his flag. I explained about how the man fought in all those wars to protect our country and freedom in other countries. He reluctantly put the flag in the ground at Mr. Browning’s grave. He had tears in his eyes because he didn’t want to give up his flag but he alone made the choice to do that. I was very proud of that little 3 year old. He wanted that flag so badly but he understood that someone else deserved it more. After we had left Mr. Browning’s grave, Daniel turned around and looked back in the direction of his grave and without any prompting, he saluted. I only realized later that I had captured that picture. He had seen an old man earlier salute a grave and he was apparently mimicking what he saw. I was a proud grandma. 

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Each year since, I put on my most patriotic colors and run from my home to and through Memorial Cemetery in Columbia, Mo where so many military people are laid to rest. I always collect a flag from the volunteers at the entrance as I did with Daniel on that day. I always make a stop at Mr. Browning’s grave to place my flag on it. I do not even know who this man was but I feel he is a relative.

One year, something very weird happened. I always fill out a card that the veterans ask us to fill out. We are supposed to grade them on how well kept the place is. They also ask who my relative is. I put down Robert D. Browning. A few weeks later….I won a $50 gas gift card. That was Mr. Browning saying thanks to Daniel and me. 🙂

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“It is our pleasure, sir….Thank you!”

~RIP and Thank You, Robert D. Browning~

Roll With It, Baby

Today was intended to be a needed rest day for me.

I went to bed last night at 9 pm and on a Saturday night for Pete’s sake! I did lay in bed reading running sites on the laptop until 10 or 10:30 pm so I guess that’s not bad. I was beat and achy from the 8 mile run that morning.

I remember the days when I was younger that bedtime was something I dreaded. I start looking at the clock now waiting for that magic hour!

I woke up this morning at 5:40am and yesterday before 6. If it was a work day, I would have been so sleepy and tempted to sleep in. I am not sure why I wake up so early. It’s usually because Peyton comes knocking at the door for me to open it so he can jump up in the bed with us for his individual attention! 🙂

We walked the dogs, went to get grocery and I mowed and weed-eated the lawn.  That was supposed to be my cardio exercise today. I do love our yard. I get an intrinsic satisfaction by doing yard work. All the flowers, lilacs, mums and roses are looking great. Our birdhouses and bird feeders are full. I love just sitting and watching.

On days that I don’t run…I get anxious. I’ve heard this will get worse as I start running more miles.  I do have new products to try so I decided to do a recovery type run for a short 2 miles to try them out.

(1) The Endura Cool Towel

(2) Nathan’s Quickshot Hydration

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The cooling towel actually does cool when you follow the directions. I wore it around my neck while I was running and it was very warm here today. I have my doubts that it will cool for hours but maybe. You can supposedly reactivate it from the accumulated sweat. But..it does cool and I found that refreshing and especially since I have a hard time sweating. My big issue with it is not having a way to keep it on my neck while running. I tucked it inside the straps of my top and it kept slipping out. Maybe I can use a safety pin or something. I have plenty of those! 🙂

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The Nathan hand-held hydration bottle is pretty cool. It has a comfortable strap and you can slip your thumb in it and not have to hold it. It’s easy to squirt the water in your mouth with no issues. I thought the thing around my hand would bother me and maybe it would on a longer run but it was fine today. The only downside that I saw was how small it was but I chose it that small. I know I would not like running with the bigger around my hand.

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On this short run today, I did burn about 300 calories more due to the heat, I think…but I made the mistake and wore some old “Fila Skeletoes” that I had bought back when I started running. They are similar to the Vibram 5 fingers but were a bit cheaper ($70) vs ($100). The are nice for trail running but running on asphault with them is and always was a big mistake. I found that out the first couple of times I tried to run with them. I felt every pebble and stick that I stepped on. Not to mention that I don’t like feeling the jarring in my knee with every single step. I must have cushion of some kind. One of my impulse and silly purchases early in my running life! 🙂

Fila

I’m relaxed and watching the St. Louis Cardinals now but one more thing before I sign off…..

I found something incredible to eat today that I am obsessed with: Dried Mango with Chipotle seasoning. I could take a bath in that stuff! Well…if it wasn’t chile seasoned! 🙂 I found them in the bulk section at Lucky’s Natural Grocery today. I’ve wanted to buy some for a while because they look so sexy. Remember once I told you that I like sexy looking food like oysters, crayfish, mussels, strawberries…etc. Well, these looked sexy and when I finally tasted them, I ate half a pound! Back to Lucky’s tomorrow to get more.

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Tomorrow is another running day for me but usually Monday’s are my rest day. I usually do a solo run through our local Memorial Cemetery every Memorial Day. It’s always beautifully lined with 100s of American Flags honoring our fallen and deceased military men and women. I always get emotional on that run.

I better hit the roller. I am learning that is is my friend.

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 ~Roll On~

 

Running Commando

We got up early this morning, ate breakfast, fed and walked the dogs and took off for our 8 mile run.

It started out as 7 miles but I convinced Kevin to go for 8. I haven’t run 8 miles since my half marathon on Apr 6 so it was about time that I break through that 7 mile wall.

may 24, 2014 8 miles

I have done nothing but research running products to try and marathon nutrition sites. YouTube is a great medium for seeing product reviews.

I’m still in the search for shoes and went to several places today but did not buy any. I did buy new compression and running wear, Endura Instant Cooling towel, Nathan Quickshot Hydration, and Body Glide.

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It’s funny but there was a discussion for the last few days on RunJunkEes FB page about women wearing or not wearing underwear. All the women on the site declared Saturday “Commando Running”  so I participated and I will say I loved it! I didn’t have to worry about tugging on my undies during the run, it felt airy, and one of the ladies on there said she felt a bit naughty! 🙂 I will say that wearing black Under Armour running pants helps to hide the sweat! HA! The comments from the men on the FB page were hilarious and many didn’t ever think women did that and will now have a whole new view of running with women! It’s not new to women and I’ve done it before. Let’s just hope men don’t do that! 🙂

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I completed my week with my biggest amount of running miles to date: 24.27 miles. Of course that will get bigger during July until October.

After my run, I didn’t get the runchies as bad today for some reason. My calorie intake hasn’t been bad but did I have wine, bread, and gorgonzola cheese for dinner. Not one of the best diets for a 54 year old runner! 🙂

I have enjoyed my Memorial Day weekend so far.  I look forward to the next 2 days of doing just whatever the hell I want to!

~Go Commando~

 

Rungry Like the Wolf


 The more miles I run, the more I worry about gaining weight!


run•chies [run-chees] nthe overwhelming, gotta-stuff-my-face feeling experienced by runners and athletes alike, typically characterized by a desperate need for carbs, sugar and fatty goodness ~  from “The Runchies Blogger” 

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I’ve seen other runners refer to it as “Rungry


It is true that running burns more calories per hour than any other cardio exercise. I have taken a huge chunk of fat off my body by a good diet and running which I am grateful for. But let’s talk about the other side of that…..stuffing your face like a pig after a hard, long run.

Maybe I’m experiencing it more now because my miles per week are increasing and my body needs the calories to recover.

After I ran my last half marathon in April, I couldn’t eat enough for the following 2 or 3 days.

I’m still a few pounds under my original goal weight but I did want to take off a few more pounds to aid me in my 26.2 mile quest….but with my appetite today, I don’t see that happening.

I did read and posted about it from “running experts and coaches” that an average sized woman should eat 2000-2500 calories per day during the marathon training.


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I have also read that it is typical that someone training for the marathon may gain weight. What??? I don’t want or need that.

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At the present, I still try to stick to a 1300 calorie diet per day but that’s net meaning that if I burn calories, I can eat more. That’s one of the “secrets” of my 130+ lb weight loss. That’s how running helped me. If I set my calories at 1100 per day and I burned 300 running or other exercise, I could eat 1400 calories a day and still lose the weight. That was my simple formula for losing weight. If I indulged in a Cadbury egg, I’d do something to burn 150 more calories to stay within my goal. I am a big proponent of wearing a heart monitor while exercising, gardening, mowing…etc to get a more accurate calorie burn count.

I really want to take off a few pounds. In mid June when I start my structured training, I was going to increase my calories to ~1700 calories.

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So far, I have eaten all but 300 of my days allotted calories and it’s only 5 pm and a Friday night….what about dinner, what about a glass of wine?? HA!

♦~Eat Up~♦

 

How Can You Like to Run?

As one of the few runners (or maybe only runner) where I work, I many times have to put up with a lot of snide comments, jokes and outright dislike. There are people who politely asked me if I ran “a marathon” this weekend….any run is a marathon to most non-runners.

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There is no doubt that I need to contain my excitement when I talk about running because (1) non-runners don’t understand or care (2) people can legitimately get tired of other people’s past times. I get tired of hearing about deer killing (hunting), morel mushroom finding, kids excelling in sports, basketball brackets (the only sport that I don’t like), drunken weekends, misbehaving teenagers…etc. (3) Lazy people do not care to hear about active people’s lives (4) I should remain mysterious about it to fuck with them.

But this morning, someone asked me a question that I could spend the rest of the day answering “How in the world can you like running?”  This person was not being sarcastic or snide but it was a legitimate inquiry.

I think the first thing that came out of my mouth was that I didn’t like running in the same sense that I liked watching football or playing with Daniel and Sadie or having sex (I just thought the sex thing and didn’t say it. I am the manager here so talking about sex is NEVER a good idea).  🙂

I didn’t go any further than that answer with him but it did get me thinking so I could be better prepared for an honest inquiry that might come in the future versus someone being a smart ass asking a dumb question to try in someway to belittle someone. I answer that type a question with “I run to piss you off” or “because you can’t”  kinda answer.


Here is a list of reasons that I love (obsessed to non runners) running:


~ It relieves stress, sadness, anxiety or anger as soon as my feet hit the pavement

~It allows my husband to like me (truth). If I’m particularly bitchy…he will say “baby, please run” (note: women are the only ones who can call other women bitchy without getting hit or a lawsuit) ♥

~It burns a shitload of calories

~I feel a sense of freedom (not able to fully explain or understand)

~It’s “me” time (unless running with my hubby or group runs)

~I feel strong

~I can plan, analyze and make decisions about complicated things

~I can fantasize (about men, women, careers, winning the powerball..etc)

~It challenges my body, mind & will

~I feel very special

~I feel sexy

~I love how my calves look (no skinny jeans for this girl)

~I love that my resting heart rate hovers about 50-55

~I love donuts and other pastries

~I want to live a long life

~I want to set an example for Daniel and Sadie…and anyone else who cares about me

~Independence (I don’t have to rely on anyone to help me)

~I look hot in my compression pants

~Because once when I weighed almost 300 lbs, I could not run

~It sets me apart

~My fees go to great charities

~Free tech shirts plus medals

~That “fleeting” runners high

~My quads are awesome

~I meet new people (my own kind….runners)

~Sky high energy level most of the time

~It improves my health

~My heart is strong

~It’s a versatile exercise

~It makes me feel good and happy

~It wears me out and I sleep like a baby

ok, you get it and each time I run….I can usually add another thing to this list


Today, my oldest canine baby is 5.  The day I reluctantly let Peyton come into my life….I started to become a better person. I have no doubt about that. Happy birthday, baby! 🙂

Baby Peyton

Baby Peyton


Peyton jumped from the backseat into my lap for some loving on our trip last weekend to STL.
Peyton jumped from the backseat into my lap for some loving on our trip last weekend to STL.

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Peyton and Eli make me feel happy, content, patient, loving, responsible, organized, sometimes stressed, sometimes pissed off but most of all, they make me feel loved and needed.

~Love a Dog~