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Friday, September 30, 2011

That Nagging Voice That Won't Shut Up

I've decided that I don't need any one else on this planet to tell me what I should do ever again.  I have that annoying, irritating, high-pitched voice in my head telling me instead.  Yep.  My brain just won't shut the hell up.  
Zip it, Lady!

NaNoRiMo is coming up in November, and I have been having the battle to end all battles in my head over whether I should attempt it again this year.  My issue is this:  It starts November 1st; I am running my half-marathon on November 5th, and probably won't be able to even make a stab at it until at least the second week of November.  This means being waaaaay behind from the start.  And of course I have no clue what I would write about.  I won't have a clue until I get back from Savannah, which I am sure will leave me overwhelmed with sights, sounds, and memories that I could use for a story, and do  plan on using for a story--someday.  

This is the same voice that is asking why the heck I haven't done the dishes either.  Or mowed the yard.  Or cut down the garden.  Or put away my porch furniture.  Or basically done anything to ready my home for the cold weather.  
She's a real hard-ass.  Sticking my fingers in my ears and singing "La La La" has not silenced that voice.

So I have this weekend off.  Lovely weather, two whole days off in a row!  What shall I do?  Can I manage to pull off all those tasks in 2.5 hours on Saturday morning, leaving the rest of the day to visit an apple orchard and putz around town with my nephew, Cole?  Dare I hope to make banana bread and catch up on all the TV shows I have missed in the past two weeks?  Take a nap?  Run?

Yep.  This is my plan.  I will be come Jamie Sommers, and whirl around my house and yard, occasionally lifting cars and catching criminals in between chores. 

I always thought she was a sharp dresser!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

So Annoying!

Stupid guts.  Hate them.  Gotta get the intestinal situation back on track!  But good news--I got a sweet little belt to use for my half.  It has a nice expandable pouch that will hold my cell phone, a snack, and TP for my race, but isn't big and bulky so I won't look like I'm carrying a backpack around my middle.

Gonna shoot for a 12 miler (that I didn't do last week) this week either Thursday or Friday before I go to work.  I anticipate that I will be gingerly moving around at work either one of those nights--pretty sure the feet will be aching.   I could wait for the weekend, but I'd rather be done with it so I can spend the weekend working in the yard.  Can I say I have completely disregarded my yard in the past few weeks?  Yep.  Ignore.  Not even a peep when I walk out the back door and drive away.  One more good mow, then getting out the clippers and cutting everything down.  Putting away the patio  furniture.  Maybe climbing up the ladder and trying to get the gutters in shape.  Getting that f****ng bird's nest out of the gutter that has been there all spring and summer.  Of course it's in the worst, most dangerous part of the gutter.  The part that hangs near my front stairs, on an incline, with no where to safely put a ladder.  Requires two people to get it done.  Any takers?  :)

Another exciting week for me!  I may even finally get to watch the last three episodes of True Blood.  and read a few more books.  I have done it again, and started 4-5 books, so now I'm in the midst of mayhem trying to move ahead on those.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Spur of the Moment Long Run

I got my work schedule messed up yesterday, and found out when I went to work at 8 AM that I didn't have to be there until noon.  I quickly drove home and decided to try and squeeze in my long run (12 miles) before I went back to work.  I have been very antsy the past few days thinking about this run, and had planned on doing it Saturday morning.  Oh, the books were calling.  I  wanted to just plop down on that couch and read for a few hours!  But annoying nagging Sue made me run instead.

Not having a run in mind when I got up yesterday morning, I proceeded to eat a bowl of Wheaties with milk and drink a couple cups of coffee.  With my track record on gut issues during long runs, I was a bit worried that I would have problems.  Popping a faux-Imodium so soon before my run was the only option.  Since I had already eaten, I didn't plan on snacking during my run, either.

To play it safe, and be near a bathroom, I ran in the park near my sister's house.  The only problem with this is that it is a circular 1 mile route.  When you do that 10-12 times it gets a bit boring.  I decided to just run as long as I could and went into it planning on hitting my 12.

Well, I ran 10 miles.  I didn't walk.  I consider that another good thing.  That's twice now I have run 10 miles with no walk breaks and only one water break.  It was cool, slightly windy, and cloudy yesterday, so after breaking out into a sweat the first 5 miles, my body adjusted and while I was plenty warm, I wasn't pooped out from it.  I did have to run over to Walgreen's and use the bathroom after about an hour.  The faux-Imodium just didn't kick in soon enough.  I so wanted to hit that 12 miles, but time and lack of preparation weren't on my side.  I ran slower than I did two weeks ago, and am definitely more sore than I was then.  

I called Bud to tell him, and he was full of wisdom, as always.  He told me not to be upset that I didn't hit 12, that running 10 was great, considering it was not a planned run, and I had eaten cereal and milk an hour before.  And my supper of chips, salsa, and cheese quesadillas the night before probably didn't do much to help me be fueled for the morning. As Bud said, knowing I can run 10 miles with all those factors is a good thing, and shows I can do it.  

So, long run done for this week.  I plan on finally hitting that 12 miles next weekend!  And keep on working on speed.  Just 6 weeks to go and two long runs left:  a 12 miler, and a 15 miler.  And new pads for my shoes.  

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Reading=Stress Relief

Get this poster here

In times of stress, reach for that wonderful book.  It will relax you, take you away, and keep the stresses of everyday life at bay for a few hours.  If you can sit in a hot bath with lavender bath salts and a cup of tea, even better!

Don't know what to read?  Try my other blogs for book ideas:

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ikea Meatballs Equal Happiness

 I tapped into my massive stockpile of Ikea meatballs last night and served them up with gravy and roasted red potatoes.  Bud came over, took one look at the potatoes, and said "Where are the noodles?"  

My mind went completely blank, then I realized I usually serve them with egg noodles.  But I could only think of serving them with potatoes, so I had to crush his dreams of Amana egg noodles and gravy.  I, however, inhaled my food (along with a fall salad of apples, lettuce, walnuts, blue cheese, and dried cranberries) and drank two beers.  I think at one point I would have popped the button on my jeans-- but I thought ahead and had my sweats on, for maximum food digestion.  

Needless to say, I made too many meatballs, so I had more for lunch today! It did slow me down during work.   And there are more tucked away in the freezer for a super quick supper.  Or maybe a supper for my Mom next time I see her.  

Mmmm.....meatballs.  Happiness is knowing there are more bags in the freezer.  And the latest Food Network magazine has the recipe for Ikea meatballs in it!  Woohoo!  Hardware comes extra.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Okay--Time to Confess My Puzzlement/Confusion/Hey--That's Great--But Why?

As a woman in my 40's, I am well aware that while we can start our life and go through the first 20 some years as thin as a rail, at some point the body stops working with us, and begins to work against us.  As in Me:   "I am getting comfortable with myself and my place in the world.  Amen."   Body:  "Okay--that means we get to make you gain weight in all the wrong places, and never get it off!"  

So this has been my dilemma for the past 12 years, and it's been horrifying.  Now I haven't gained 40, 50, or even 100 pounds, but what I have gained has made me feel like I have no control over my body and what it should do.  I blame it on a lack of sleep at night, changing hormones, and a work schedule that has me working either early mornings, or a second shift that lasts until 10:30 at night.  It all has combined to make me eat for comfort and eat at times when I never ever ate before.  Like after 7PM.  I come from a family where we ate at 6PM at the latest.  I liked that.  It didn't give me a chance to snack before supper, since supper was only an hour away.  If I am home alone, I will eat earlier.  If Bud is coming over, it's usually 7:30-8PM before we can eat.

I have become puzzled over the last 6 months about the body I inhabit.  At first I thought it was just that beginning of the beginning of the end.  The female body shifting gear and preparing me for that wonderful thing--menopause.  I'd like to think I'm a few years away from full blown menopause, but we all know stuff starts happening waaaay before that.  Like mysteriously feeling warmer all the time; not hot flashes, just warmer.  Breaking out in a sweat when everyone else is chilly.  Feeling a bit like a freak when you go out to run in shorts and a tank top and pass people wearing hats, gloves, and jackets.  This is why I bitched all summer at the horrible heat.  I don't like it anyway, and never have--but this summer it just felt intolerable.  

Along with this gift of extra body heat, I have strangely enough had a shift in my eating.  As in not eating as much.  After Googling this strange phenomena--thinking it was maybe part of something that happens that we aren't told about by our mothers and older sisters--I discovered that the opposite is true.  As the hormones go down, we begin to eat like a horse with a feedbag attached to it's face.  Not one thing said appetite decreases.

I have lost a bit of weight--very very very very very very slowly.  I was surprised at this, but happy.  It hasn't been from running, cause I'm not running nearly as much as I should be.  I can only wonder at this bizarre occurrence in my life.  I keep thinking I will wake up one morning and feel the urge to consume a whole box of cereal, followed by an dozen eggs and a pound of bacon.  But nothing yet.  Instead, I continue to suddenly feel full, leave food on my plate, and not have seconds or thirds.  

I have been passed by my medical scene, and I feel good except for this weird thing.  It makes me think I won't be able to chow down in Savannah on all the stuff I so want to eat.  That will really piss me off.  How can I possibly cram weeks of Southern food into a long weekend?  Can I take a cooler home?

So I guess what I am saying is "What the hell is going on?  Can it continue so I can lose 15 pounds more?"   

Bizarre--strange--a Ripley's Believe It or Not:  "Sue G is actually  not hungry all the time!"

Monday, September 12, 2011

Nesting Has Kicked In

This happens to me every Fall:  the desire to hunker down, bake, wear warmer clothing, and read until my eyeballs fall out.  Ok, I know you're probably thinking:  "Doesn't she already read til her eyeballs fall out?"  Yes, but I do other stuff.  In the Fall, I just want to read 24/7.  And smell wood smoke, eat pumpkin bread, and feed Bud until he bursts.  Thankfully, he won't let me make that much food for him, and he has some control.  If I could eat chili, lasagna, potato soup, and apple cake all in one day, I would try.  But then I would weigh 500 pounds and feel a little sick.  

I kinda got this feeling a few weeks ago, when we finally got some cooler weather and I could run without passing out.  After this weekend with Bud--an impromptu weekend vacation; well, driving in a truck for 9 hours can give you time to think.  And think I did!  Oh, gosh--all the food I want to cook--applesauce, banana bread, pumpkin bread, green chile sauce, green chile stew, soups to freeze, and a zillion other tasty things I haven't eaten since last winter.  It's been probably 6 months since I last made lasagna.  I think it will be on the menu this weekend.  

And then there's all the books I love to read at this time of year:  namely, spooky stuff.  True ghost stories, thrillers, and just fun creepy stuff.  Oh yeah--Fall housework.  Forgot about that.  All the cleaning I didn't do this summer (thank you Mother Nature for the horrible heat!) that I really should do now:  wash the house, clean the windows, curtains, and the basement.  I have to make room for all the limoncello  and homemade Bailey's I'm going to make for Christmas gifts. Plus it's just a big pit that needs straightening and organization.  Once again going through clothes, seeing what I need for the cooler months, and sending old clothes to a donation spot.  Cutting down everything in the gardens.  Sighing over what didn't grow, and how I didn't put the work in to make them sing this year.

Oh--can't forget about that trip in November with my sisters.  Gotta get together with them, and plan some things out.  Gotta keep training for another 7 weeks!  That's at least 3 more looooong runs-- a 12, a 13, and a 15.  Saving saving saving so I can eat my way through Savannah (except for Friday night--gotta be smart and eat well before the run on Saturday).  I can't wait to try some Southern food.  And there may be some Christmas purchasing while I'm there, too.  

Tomorrow is my day off.  What will I do?  Run early in the morning, laundry, hair cut and color, maybe just maybe make green chile sauce, and take Cole to a Lego event at the bookstore in the evening.  If the timing is right, maybe we'll be able to whip out some banana bread before the event, so Cole can take some home and I can mow down on my own loaf.  Hopefully see Bud and get a chance to hug my sweetie.  

And you didn't really think I would let a day go by without reading, did you?  

Friday, September 9, 2011

Happy Runner

What can I say?  I'm still happy about my 10 miler on Tuesday.  I had a quick run this morning--only twice around the park--a whopping 1.6 miles--before I had to get home and get moving on other things.  I don't want to curse my running, but all I will say is that I think I've turned a corner, and I am happy with my running for the first time in months.  I hope this continues, and when I'm feeling down, I will pull that awesome satisfaction of finishing that long run out of my brain and remember that I can do it and did do it.  Until I do it again in another week--a 12 miler.

On another note, the Rock 'N Roll Savannah Marathon/Half-Marathon is completely sold out.  I am a bit freaked out, since this means I will be running with 23,000 other people through the streets of Savannah.  It also means I probably won't be the last one across the finish line.  And apparently the City of Savannah is freaked out, too.  I got an email from the hotel where I have a room reserved, asking me to call/email if I need to cancel my reservation.  Um....NO!  I think this experience will be one that I will not soon forget--and as long as I take my faux-Imodium, it will be a very happy event!

Fritz my beloved truck has had a minor operation, courtesy of Dr. Bud, and will be on the road to recovering his butt this weekend.  Can I just say how lucky I am to have my sweet guy?  He really does look out for me no matter what. He even lets me kiss him every once in awhile ;) 

My silver fox

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

One Happy Camper: 10 Miler Done!

I so dreaded going out today.  I have to do a 10 mile run this week, and I haven't run 10 miles in so long (seriously--at least a year) that I just wanted to cry.  I thought about putting it off until Friday, but then I would have all week to think about it, and dread it even more--until it was this huge monster sitting on my back:

Monster ridin' my ass!

So I got up this morning, and after dithering around, I finally got my gear together and drove out to a new place to run.  It's another trail in town, and this one winds down by the Cedar River, the town dump (thankfully hidden), and out into the country.  I haven't been on this trail since before the flood of 2008, and it has definitely been worked on--what a fantastic trail!  It's just beautiful; all black top, and winding around wildflowers, trees, and beautiful bridges overlooking the countryside.  There was a lot to look at, and the weather was perfect:  cool, sunny, and no major wind.
I began my run.  I had a water bottle with a very weak orange juice/water mixture in it, and part of an energy bar, along with my trusty iPod.  I was pretty much alone out on the trail, and it was very peaceful.  I felt pretty good, and here's my times by each mile:
Avg Pace

Yep.  I ran the whole damn thing.  Even got a little faster on the way back.  I briefly stopped at mile 5 to grab a sip and chew a piece of my energy bar, and then started running again.  NO WALK BREAKS.  Yeah--hold your shit together--I ran the entire way.  I wanted to be able to call Bud and tell him I didn't walk.  I was pretty good until about mile 8, and I started feeling sore and tired.  My feel hurt like hell, but otherwise I am so pleased and happy.  It gave me a huge boost to know I can run that far.  Now, less than 2 months to go to the half-marathon in Savannah.  Speed workouts will continue and hills, too.  And my longest run will be 15 miles, so I know running 13.1 can be done!
Now off to eat something.  I am sooooo hungry.  And no gut issues to report--thank you, faux-Imodium.  You are my new best friend.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Holiday Weekend For You, Not For Me!

found it here
While most Americans will be enjoying the last gasp of summer on a three day weekend, I will be doing what Monday's holiday is named for:  Labor.

Yep.  I get to work all weekend.  Lucky me!  Will it be busy?  Hmm.  Probably not.  Unless the heavens open up and it storms all day.  There's the first home football game for the U of I, there's camping, boating, and yard work.  There are probably lots of cookouts and hearty partying to be done.  I will be wiping the sweat off my brow at work, trying to make every customer I come in contact with blissfully happy, and leaving with an armload of books.  

The good thing about working this weekend, is that I have a three day weekend next week.  After the crowds are gone, when things have settled down.  It means--hopefully, another lunch date with C-Joy, Turtle, and "Teesa".  It may also mean a very long road trip with Bud, in our quest to put Fritz back together again.  If not that, then a birthday party and time to do some Fall clean up at my house.  I am hoping we find a butt for Fritz, so I can drive him again.  

Fritz as Humpty Dumpty.  Except he's got a cracked butt, not a cracked head.

How's my running going?  Not so good this week.  I've managed to run a grand total of 6 miles.  My training wheels have fallen completely off, and I have decided instead of religiously following the plan I have stuck on my fridge, to just glance at it and try to make the highlights of it.  Speed work is a must, and I hope to do that tomorrow morning before I go to work.  This morning the weather is a bit iffy, with one thunderstorm already through, and by the gloominess in my house, another may be on the way.  I may just go to work early, then try and get a run in after work.  The cool temps are on their way!  They really do make a huge difference in my running.  Not sweating profusely all the time leaves my body some energy to actually keep running.  I bought a few energy bars to try out on longer runs; September is my energy bar month.  I will keep trying them all until I find one that tastes good and gives me a kick in the pants when I need it!  And doesn't give me the shits when I run.  Yep.  I said it.  When you've experienced enough "intestinal distress" as I have on long runs, you quickly lose your modesty about it.  And reading so many tales of other people having the same issues makes me feel like part of a club.  A poop club.  

It is Hatch Green Chile time at the grocery stores in town, and I have been buying bags of them to roast.  I am going to make green chile sauce this week, and stash it in the basement for green chile eating this winter.  I have been craving this stuff!  On eggs, on tortillas, on pretty much everything.  And best of all, I don't have to share it with Bud.  He won't eat the stuff.  More for me!

Have a great weekend everyone.  I don't know about you, but I am so ready for Fall.  Cannot wait for it.  Jumping up and down excited for it.  Yes, my life is so exciting, I get jazzed about a season.