Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Closing the books for April

I went out for a short recovery run yesterday after school since the weather was cooperating. (If you want to hear a funny story ... ask me what the weather is predicting for Friday, May 2nd, 2008!) The run got cut a bit shorter as my right calf was still tight from my long run. I woke this morning with no soreness and planned to run a nice Fartlek this afternoon. Check. After the run, I was a little sore. I probably did too much mileage in the past week and a half after a week and a half off. Oops. I lifted a bit, focusing on my legs ... and then off to spin I was ... testing out my new cycling shoes!

LoVeD them! It's a completely different world!

Where the heck did April go? I have made the executive decision that I will be cashing in yet another rest day on the last day of April. With that ... the numbers are in for April ...

OSN: 5600M ...............goal was 8000M
OCN: 48.07 miles .......goal was 65 miles
ORN: 45.26 miles .......goal was 50 miles

I didn't make any of my goals for the month of April, but I thought this was pretty productive considering the fact that I only worked out 15 days this month. Eeks. That will be different next month .. fo really reals. The weather is getting nicer ... I gots me a new bike ... no excuses! .... and .....

OSN: 8,000M
OCN: 80 miles
ORN: 60 miles

Finish strong, y'all!

Yesterday's Workout:
ORN: 2.11 miles, 26:12 minutes, 12:25 min/mile

Today's Workout:
ORN: 2.76 miles, 30 minutes, 10:52 min/mile
OCN: 21.87 miles, 57 minutes, 23mph

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I did my part!

We all know that the extra $600 us tax-payers are receiving is given to us in hopes that it will boost the economy. That being the money should be spent, not saved, not used to pay off credit cards, etc.

Well, I have had that dollar amount in the back of my mind for a couple months now, knowing exactly how I wanted to SPEND it.

And that is exactly what I did today. I did my part to boost our economy and SPENT it ... before I actually received it, but it's all the same, right?!

What did I spend it ALL on, might you ask?

Well ... here it is!

I paid off the rest of my bike I had on lay-away ....

....and purchased the following:

...clipless pedals, Shimano cycling shoes (which will work for both my bike and spin bike), helmet, bike shorts, under armour cycling socks, gloves, a little pack to fit under my seat (that contains an extra tire, CO2 container, adapter to fill tires, and a tool to put a new tube on my tire), 1 water bottle holder (for now), water bottle, and a Polar monitor. ... as I got a discount on every accessory.

I am in LOVE.

I just need to find a good name for her. Him? Her? He? She?

Now I just spent a good 5 minutes trying to get my shoes into the clipless petals. Struggled a bit, finally got one in, but then couldn't get the damn thing out! I had a small panic attack and quickly was thankful I wasn't out on the road. I will have to practice a bit more before heading out.

I can't wait to joing a riding group that gathers Thursday nights and Sunday mornings at Scheels! They always go the speed and distance that the newest riders are most comfortable with!

The Weekender, Volume 2

Friday night was pretty low key. As much as I wanted to go out and share a few drinks with some friends, I ended up taking an early evening nap, probably almost 2 hours. Geeez, woman! I think I am getting old!

Saturday morning I was up early, filled my tummy with some oatmeal, dressed, peeked outside to see what Mother Nature had blessed us with again, and was soon off to the gym. Damn her. The roads were horrible and not cleared as it was still snowing. It was so deep in some areas that I felt the snow hitting the bottom of my car. Yuck. I barely made it into the parking lot.

The 10-miler. As much as I dreaded getting on the thrillmill for this, it ended up going pretty well. I was able to maintain a R4/W1 method, keeping my running pace right around the 11:15 min/mile. I sweated like a banshee... drank more tha 90 ounces of water, had a handful of sports beans, and drank a good amount of gatorade when I was finished. The last mile was a bit of a challange as my groin muscles felt a bit fatigued, my knees were getting a little sore, and my right calf was tight. I stretched a lot and downed a few ibuprophens before I even left the gym. As soon as I was home I iced my knees for a while and enjoyed a chocolate protein shake. Yummy!

This morning I headed into work for a few hours. Blech. I should have kept track of all the extra hours I have spent at school ... it's rediculous.

I had a good brick workout planned for this morning/afternoon. The pool is usually open for a couple hours prior to spin class. Note the word usually. Not today. Damnit! They were cleaning it. I wasn't going to go home just to come back in a couple hours for spin. So I canned the workout entirely. Probably not the best idea but my legs are a little sore, not bad though, from yesterday and I didn't want to run.

So what will I do with the rest of my day? Ah ha! Don't you worry about that! I have brought myself some work home to work on ... and I going to be making a jaunt over at our local Scheels today... check back later for details!

Yesterday's Workout: ORN: 10.20 miles, 2 hours 2 minutes, 11:57 min/mile

Finish Strong, y'all!

Friday, April 25, 2008

What does this mean?

So we got weather advisories posted across the television during Grey's Anatomy last night. We are supposed to get 1-3 inches of snow this evening and into Saturday morning, along with 33mph wind gusts and temps around 32 degrees that really feel like 15-19 degrees. I swear I am living in the buttcrack of the Midwest.

What does this mean?
This chica will be doing her long run tomorrow morning ... at the gym ... on the thrillmill. It will be great! *note sarcasm*

I have managed to workout, following my schedule to a "T" without making any changes (which never happens), and get in 5 solid workouts in a row. All this after only working out a handful of times the two weeks prior.

What does this mean? I am taking a rest day today. I am tired. I will take advantage of the cold weather, stay indoors, watch a movie or some sports, finish my book, and try to catch up with y'alls blogs! *smiles*

I might even have myself a cold beer.

Yesterday's Workout:

OCN: 8.01 miles, 32 minutes, 15.02 mph
ORN: 2.40 miles, 27 minutes, 11:15 min/mile

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Squeezin' in the workouts

I was dragging all day at school today. My eyes were so tired and heaving this morning and my body just felt exhausted. Usually I am pretty good about getting enough sleep and feeling rested. I think my workouts this week (after a week off) have required my body to adjust a bit.

I could have opted for a rest day. But, instead I came home, took an hour nap and then hit the pool. I still have my goals for the month of April that I am trying to keep in mind (and very do-able despite the fact I took 3 days off last week and a week off before then).

I have been racking my brain and constantly changing my workout schedule for this week and next week, attempting to get in a couple long runs. Possibly a 10-miler and then a 11- or 12-miler next weekend. I am sure I am not the only one that would prefer to enjoy a nice long run outside ... rather than on the thrillmill. But, the weather hasn't been as cooperative as I would like. The colder temps are one thing, but the wind? That is a whole 'nother ball game. If anything, I might have to resort to doing a 5 or 6 mile run twice in one day ... on the thrillmill.

Yesterday's Workout:
ORN: 1.25 miles, 13 minutes, 10:24 min/mile
abs, lifted legs
OCN: 18.19 miles, 56 minutes, 19.48 mph

Today's Workout:
OSN: 1600M, 45 minutes, 2:48 min/mile
(a bit better than Monday's swim)

Finish Strong, y'all!

Monday, April 21, 2008

training taking a positive turn

Yesterday's run was about as bad as last wednesday's run. I was instantly over heating and constantly counting down the time. It was miserable. I wanted to be anywhere but on that damn thrillmill. I sucked it up and was off in 30 minutes.

Work this week is going to be crazy as I have a meeting everyday after school, and a variety at that. With that note, I was definitely ready to get my run/swim combo in tonight.

The run.. ... ..felt really good. In sync. Maybe it was because I was wearing these that I purchased on my trip. yeah... that definitely had to be it. I know there were others in that gym jealous of those. You like 'em?!? Come on... some one has to like them!

After a good solid run I had enough time to stretch really good which I have been neglecting for the past couple weeks. I also took advantage of the extra time a got in some ab work, as well as some super lifting on the arms.

Feel the burn.

Then, off to the pool. An experience in itself. So, I walk into the pool (of 4 lanes) to find all lanes open but one (yes!) .... and a male life guard. Damnit. I so wanted to let him know that I haven't swam in 2 weeks ... so don't judge me, but make sure I don't choke too much on water. In the far lane was my friend old man river, who I was afraid was going to drown. Poor guy, he's probably more fit than me. Within minutes all lanes were full and the guy to girl ratio was 6 to 1. That has never happened!

'nough said about that.

The swim came and went. What can I say? I really shouldn't take more than a 2 weeks vacation from the pool. Period. Lesson learned, I think.

Finish Strong, y'all.

Yesterday's workout:
ORN: 2.58 miles, 30 minutes, 11:37 min/mile

Today's workout:
ORN: 3.56 miles, 40 minutes, 11:14 min/mile
abs/lifted arms
OSN: 1000M, 30 minutes, 3:00 min/mile (ouch... very slow)

P.S. Tomorrow is Jess Day! You will HAVE to go wish her a big happy birthday!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Weekender, Volume 1

School related...
When working in special education it's hard to be away from work. Preparing for a sub is more work than being there and you never know how the kids are going to be with the sub, especially with some students that are very needy as well as those who have some behavior issues. But, I think the kids were excited to see me back on Wednesday after my trip. They had a thousand questions for me. However, the kids were definitely pushing my buttons and testing my patience the last three days. I not only had to discuss with a student why a female has every right (and ability) to run for presidency, and how it makes him sound when he says he doesn't like the idea of a female president; I also had to explain the symbolism behind the Swastika he attempted to draw ... asking him to never draw it again. Gotta love fridays.

Triathlon issue....
It just so happens that the next triathlon I was planning on doing, the one in my home town, well ... it's the same weekend as a cousin's graduation party. So, I can either not attend the graduation party and head home to do a triathlon with no family to cheer me on, or go to the graduation party, waiting to do it next year.

I will be honest. I don't usually spend a lot of time watching movies because I don't have the attention span or have a tendency to fall asleep during them. Plus, there are usually many games that could be watched on FSN or ESPN. But I did catch a couple this weekend. First, I saw No Country For Old Men. Odd movie. I wasn't too impressed its ending, or lack of. I also watched Alvin and the Chipmunks Movie. That was pretty cute.

Running funk....
Prior to heading to AZ I ran 2 days that week. This week I only ran 2 days. Both runs weren't very enjoyable, and it was extremely hot in the gym. So hot. I thought I was going to die. Besides those runs, I haven't done much of anything else this week. I am not looking forward to my half marathon, and more so, I am not looking forward to the next 4 weeks of training. My last longest run was close to 10 miles and I know I need to get another one in there, if not 2 ... any suggestions?

I hope all those who participated in races this weekend did a great job! I look forward to reading race reports!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Arizona ... the run-down

Good food was eaten, strong drinks were drank, a mountain was climbed, shopping was done, and we took in the the warmth and sunshine every moment we could. Here is a run-down of our wonderful long-weekend in Arizona.

After our 7am flight being cancelled, we got reservations for the 11am flight. We woke friday morning to find that our 11am flight was delayed, but were able to catch the 12:00pm flight. Phew. We arrived in AZ around 1:30 their time. Pam, Steph's friend that we were staying with, took us to Tempe and we walked up and down Mill Avenue for a bit and then grabbed a snack and drink at La Bocca. We headed to Mesa, dropped off our bags and got ready for a fun night of food and dancing. We might have "pre-gramed" it a bit.

We joined a few of Pam's friends for dinner and drinks at the Cadillac Ranch. It was pretty good. We were planning on sticking around to ride the mechanical bull and do some line dancing, but it was still too early for that and headed acroos the street to a different location for some drinks and a lot of dancing. Good times were had by all!

After a late night of drinking and dancing, we slept in a bit and then headed to the pool to catch some sun. Steph and I enjoyed our books while Pam was studying her flashcards for her Boards exam. The pool was freakin' freezin. I put my feet in a few times to cool off, and then out of no where, Steph dove in. I thought she had lost her mind. Before I knew it, all three of us were in it cussing like crazy for how cold it was.

After a while in the sun, we made a nice lunch of shrimp and pasta. It was delish. We spent the rest of the afternoon getting ready and headed to Scottsdale. We did a bit of shopping in Old Town, and then headed to the Roaring Fork Restaurant for dinner. I give it two thumbs up. We enjoyed dinner on the open patio. It had been a while since I had had a burger so I just HAD to order the "Big Ass Burger" ... just so I could say that! Ha!

After dinner we did a bit of shopping and then headed to Suede for a drink or two. I loved the atmosphere, the drinks were awesome, and the music was fun. We didn't stay out too late or drink too much because we had to get up early to go hiking.

We woke up, had a breakfast of raspberry-chocolate-chip pancakes with fresh strawberries on the side. Mmmm. We made cold meat sandwiches and packed them with the rest of the strawberries, some chips, and bottled water.

We were ready to attempt the Superstion Mountain. It's so hard to explain what it was like to hike this Mountain, but I will try my best.

We started at the foothills and even though it appeared to be flat, there was a gradual incline for what seemed like a very long time. Then, before we knew it we were on all four climbing or trying to catch ourselves from falling.

It was invigorating.

We stopped to eat our lunch in the shade and enjoyed this view....We only went a bit further up, and after about 1.5 hours of hiking, we turned around as it was starting to get hot. We probably only made it 3/4 of the way up, probably not even that much. There were times where we were climbing up that I wonderful how in the world I was going to get myself back down. Sure enough, on the way down, I found myself sitting my butt down on a boulder and using my arms to get myself down. It was such a great experience.
... Coming back down ...

After hiking we were all very thirsty, thinking we should have brought more water. We stopped on our way back through Apache Junction and I picked up a powerade while they grabbed a couple slushies... I had to admit, I enjoyed the frozen coke/cherry much more than the powerade.

When we returned to Mesa, we headed over to Pam's boyfriend's place. We wanted to take a dip in a pool that was probably a bit warmer. It felt so good, but didn't last long. We were hungry and headed back to shower before dinner. We ended up eating dinner at a nice sports bar and grill, BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse. Steph and I each got a calzone and shared them. Very good. The four of us shared the cookies and cream pazookie afterwards. I will have to admit, it was the best desert I had all weekend!

We toured Mesa a bit more that night, and in the process of deciding what to do, we headed to RA Sushi in Dana Park for a cocktail. Before we knew it, Pam ordered sushi, as it was reverse happy hour and we all were eating ... again. But, this was the second time I have ever had sushi and kind of enjoyed it!

I woke up and was very sore from hiking. Not like the sore you get from running or biking, a competely different kind of sore. But, I was cool with it because I knew I had worked muscles I haven't probably worked in a long time.

Pam had school today but left her car with us. It's amazing how easy it is to navigate in AZ with their grid system and what not. Steph and I went back to Dana Park, enjoyed a cool coffee drink, some shopping in the morning, lunch with Pam and her boyfriend, some more shopping (mostly window), and headed to Tempe and walked up and down Mill Ave. .... doing a bit more shopping. Once Pam was home from school we headed out to do some serious purse shopping in Chandler (no luck for me). Afterwards, we grabbed a late dinner at Kona Grill. This was a fusion restaurant, american and japanese. I liked it a lot and would highly recommend it!

We finished off the night with desert at RA Sushi back in Mesa. We shared the cinnamon tempura ice cream. It was so delish!


Our last morning in AZ. Steph's friend had school and was gone in the morning before we woke up. We were up at about 7am and took advantage of the nice weather before it was time to leave. We grabbed the tennis rackets and a couple balls and headed to the court. The weather was gorgeous, probably about 75 degrees. I forgot to bring my camera out with us and thought I would come back to take some pics. There were a few lemon trees next to the court. I had almost mistaken the lemons on the ground for tennis balls.

It wasn't too long after our short "volleying" of the tennis ball that we were packed and heading to the airport. The trip came and went all so fast. We were truly fortunate to have such a wonderful friend to stay with and show us a good time.

I can't wait to head back! Next time I plan to stay longer, and I WILL conquer the Superstition Mountain!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Back to Reality

I made it to Arizona, loved it, and now am back in North Dakota. The weather was beautiful, we had plenty of fun, and now it's time to get back to reality. I will post more later about my trip!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

You can take this weather and shove it ... UPDATED

I am still in the process of packing for my trip. It's been almost 2 years since my last flight anywhere, and I feel like I don't know how to pack or what to pack. Who knew it could be so much work!

I will be leaving tomorrow for the cities. But, like every time I travel, the weather takes a turn for the worst. We are under yet another winter storm watch. Damn! 6 more freakin' inches of snowy slushy crap!?! I am about to blow my top! For reals. I have to get to the cities tomorrow, as we fly out of MSP at 7am Friday morning!

Let's all pray for good weather! I am not letting this crap get in my way of sunny ArIzOnA!


The 3 hour drive from Fargo to the cities yesterday afternoon/evening was horrible. I drove through almost every kind of weather; snow, sleet, ice pellets, rain, horizontal rain/snow, 30-60 mph wind gusts, slush, ice, etc. And, once I got to my sister's place, it was raining and we heard thunder. geez.

Our 7am flight departure out of MSP to PHX was CANCELED! We are pissed! We luckily were able to snag a later flight, departing at 11am. But, that has been delayed until noon. This is so frustrating.

I am just thinking of the nice weather I will be flying into ... ahhh..

David, bottled water only? Are you crazy?!? I will need a stiff drink once I get into Phoenix!

Expect lots of pictures when I return next wednesday!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Today's Tidbits

I think my fifth graders are feeling too comfortable around me. I have one calling me Dawg. One calls me Dude, especially when he has something really important to say. I have one showing me how he dances to hip hop, trying to get me to join him, hahaha! I have one asking me to give her some skin followed by "Yeah, Homegirl". I think we are all ready for this so-called-spring-break this coming weekend. Yep, fo sho!

So, I am totally taking an unplanned day off from training today. I could have biked. I could have swam. I don't think I could have ran. My legs are still a bit sore and the lifting did a doozy on my body (especially my legs).

So, what am I doing instead? Well, I did some shopping for clothes for my trip, since the weather will be 30-40 degrees warmer. Now I am doing some laundry, catching up on y'alls blogs, and watching a little American Idol. I would really like to see Christy Lee Cook head home this week. Most Definitely. Either that or Syesha.

Peace, y'all!

Monday, April 7, 2008

How about a good, solid workout!?!

As fast and hard as the snow fell yesterday, all 4.7 inches of it, it is pretty much gone today. The roads were horrible this morning since it was such heavy wet snow and froze quickly over night. The sun was shining most of the day and with temps in the 40's, most of the snow was gone by the time I left work ... most of it, except for those 7 foot snow piles on corners and in parking lots.

I hit the gym for a super duper workout tonight. My goal was 30 minutes on the treadmill, 30 minutes strength, and then 30 minutes in the pool. Check, check, and check. We all know how much I love running on the thrillmill, especially when limited to 30 minutes, which turned out to be only 28 minutes. grr. but I worked my ass of on the thrillmill and in the pool. I noticed while running that my calves are still kind of sore from my 9 miler last thursday. I know I haven't drank enough water in the past 4 days. I need to work on that.

ORN: 2.68 miles
10:26 min/mile (booyah!)
on the thrillmill

arms and legs

OSN: 1200M
2:30 min/100M

4 more days until I am in Arizona!!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Like Riding a Rollercoaster

For those of you who have followed my posts regularly, you may have somewhat of an idea as to what the weather has been like here in the past 3 weeks or so. Let's just recap a bit.

March 17: Gloomy and rainy. The temp was barely in the 30's.

March 18: The temp was 44 when I got home from work. The sun was shining and almost all of the snow was gone. I was able to take advantage of the nicer weather and run outside.

March 21: 3 days later and this is what we got. 7+ inches of snow and I was afraid I wasn't going to make it home for Easter.

March 28-30: In the cities and the temps were in the 40's... nice enough for jeans and sweatshirts. Ditch the winter jacket, right?

April 2: 47 degrees and a nice 3 mile run outdoors. yep. getting warmer. Spring is here?!

April 3: 56 degrees and a 9 miler ... tank top and pants. 'nuff said.

Today ... April 6th: We're under a Winter Weather Advisory. Blech. It's 30 degrees, and this is what it looks like right now ...I am so stinkin' sick of this rollercoaster ride of weather! But that didn't stop me from getting to the gym. It just took me longer to get there. I hit up the pool, shooting for a nice 45 minutes and was able to pull off a swim better and longer then evah before!! It felt soooo good!

OSN: 1800M

wu - 4x50M, 1 min/RI
2x100M, 1 min/RI
400M, 1 min/RI
no cool down

Afterwards, I was planning on getting on the bike for a half hour. But all the good bikes were taken. I didn't want to wait 20 minutes for a good bike, so instead I got on the thrillmill and walked a good 20 minutes ... with some hills.

OWN: 1.2 miles
20 minutes

Now, it's time to clean my apartment. I have some errands to run and I am starting to think that I should have done that yesterday.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Mid-week LONG run

Well that was interesting.

I came home from work. The temperature was 56 degrees with only a slight breeze. I changed into my running clothes, which was quite a difficult decision. Shorts and long sleeve shirt? Shorts and t-shirt? pants and t-shirt? pants and tank top? I ended up going with pants and a tank top. I don't like the feeling of the sleeves of t's on my shoulders, and I wasn't going to wear shorts because, well, it is only April and you can only imagine what true North Dakotan's look like this time of year (asside from those that tan year 'round).

I didn't have a plan in mind. I really didn't know what kind of distance I was going to do. I didn't even know where I was going to run. I didn't want to ruin my good run yesterday. I just left my apartment and started running, making turns and u-turns where necessary. A part of me knew that the weather this afternoon was about 15 degrees warmer than it is going to be this weekend. And we all know what this weekend consisted of.... a 9-10 mile run.

So, I ran. And I ran. I stopped for a powerade at about the 1 hour mark. The first hour felt good. I actually enjoyed it. I couldn't get over the fact of how nice it was and that I was wearing a tank top. The last half hour of the run wasn't so much fun. My right knee was starting to bother me, but I know that has something to do with how fatigue my quads were starting to feel. Time to hit the weights again, on a regular basis. I actually ended up walking most of the last mile. I just wanted to get it done. But I am glad to have it done with for the week. Now I can do some swimming and biking this weekend..... I think I may do that Tri in June... it should be good times.

ORN: 9.82 miles
13:14 min/mile

If anyone is looking for some positivity, head over to Danielle's blog. She has been adding positive quotes to each of her posts this week. My favorite so far is the one she posted yesterday, "Positive Hump Day".

I look forward to the change in colors here in ND. Soon. Soon it will be green, with blue skies and beautiful sunsets. I will wait. Patiently.
The state flower ... Wild Prairie Rose

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

April brings temps above freezing, sun shining, and good training

First of all, I want to thank all of you for the congrats and well wishes for my first triathlon. I spent a lot of the 3 hour car ride home Sunday replaying the events of that morning in my head; thinking of how I could train differently, more efficiently, and when I will participate in the next one! There is a triathlon in my hometown the 8th of June that I am seriously thinking about doing. It would be all outdoors. But, I am afraid the water might be a little chilly still...

With the start of April, it's time to look back on March's numbers. I thought all looked good, despite the fact that I was sick twice during the month.

OSN: 5150M (last month was 6300M... this will increase in April)
OCN: 58.76 miles (last month was 42 miles... better, but not super)
ORN: 38.84 miles (compared to last month's 39.45 miles.... not too peachy but will do)

Something new......
OSN: 8000M
OCN: 65 miles
ORN: 50 miles

I hate spending the first day of the month resting, just as much as I hate spending the last day of the month resting. I feel like they are opportune days to either finish the month strong or start a month off on the right foot. What did I do? I took a rest day, both on the last day of March and first day of April. I had a terrible migraine and just wanted to lounge. I can do that the 2nd day after a triathlon, right?

So, today I had no excuse. The temperature was near 50, the sun was shining and there was a little bit of wind but it didn't bother me! It felt like one of those runs that was over before it ever started. I probably could have gone longer, but my goal was at least 3 miles and I was starvin'. No more 2 mile runs for me. I am going to try and keep all runs above 3 miles. The weather is getting nicer and I just can't resist getting out there!

ORN: 3.59 miles
42:13 minutes
11:45 min/mile
47 degrees, sunny, 10-20 mph wind gusts

9 more days and I will be in sunny ArIzOnA!!