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Showing posts from April, 2012

Weekly Blah Blah Blah

Monday: Le Rest Day. (That's French for rest day. It means I'm fancy.)
Tuesday: Cycled 4 Miles, Ran 7 Miles, 100 push-ups
Wednesday: Cycle 4 Miles, Ran 6 Miles
Thursday: Cycled 20 Miles, Ran 1 Mile, 100 push-ups
Friday: Cycled 4 Miles, Ran 5 Miles, 10 minute ab workout
Saturday: Ran 12 Miles, Walked 2 Miles
Sunday: Ran 4.2 Miles

Totals: 35.2 miles of running, 32 miles of biking, 200 push-ups, 10 minutes of abs, 2 miles walking

Slight improvement over last week with strength training. Still not lifting anything heavier than a diet coke can, but I did at least force myself to stop and do sets of 15-20 push-ups on a couple days this week and do an ab video on YouTube. In my house, we call that success.

This week I'm doing something pretty unusual for me. There's a race - and Tim is planning on running. It's a local 5k and 10k. But instead of running...I'm volunteering? I've never volunteered for a race before, and that just isn't right. It will be a little diffe…

Don't Be Vain Like Me

Tim has been having shin splints this week pretty badly so we couldn't stick to our long trail run weekend ritual. (BOO) Instead, I made plans to meet my friend Julie and run 12 miles. Somehow I thought - yeah, 9:30 sounds like a great time to start a long run. For the record, it's not. Not at the end of April and not in Georgia. It was over 70 at the start and we ended at noon, 80 degrees and the sun overhead.

The run itself was fine, we took it easy because of the heat and added in walk breaks when necessary. The problem was that my vanity stood in the way of one thing - the hat. I don't have a running hat or visor, but I found this less than awesome, doesn't fit well, totally random hat somewhere and grabbed it.


Typically I could care less what I look like when I run. But for some reason...I hated this hat. I refused to run with it. What did I get? Sweat in my eyes the whole run, that sexy squinty thing going on with my eyes the whole time and a sunburned nose. Nex…

SHOCKING NEWS ABOUT CHOCOLATE!

I can remember one of the first times I ever had Nutella. My stepdad is German and he brought it into my life when I was about ten. For that I will forever be grateful. We were taught that it should be spread on white crusty rolls or thick rye bread - but only on top of a thick layer of salted butter. I figured my mom must be in love with the guy if she was letting us eat chocolate and buttered bread for breakfast, but as a kid I knew better than to bring that up. Just eat the Nutella and smile.

Even at the age of ten I knew that Nutella was not a healthy food. It was delicious, creamy, rich and eaten on special occasions. That's not to say I don't eat it - I do. But in moderation and as a treat. Like spread on warm, just from the oven croissants after a long run....



So I have to admit that the recent class action lawsuit against Nutella seems kind of ridiculous to me. The makers of Nutella, Ferrero, settled for three million dollars. Anyone who purchased Nutella between 2008-…

Crap You'll Never Need

Lately I've seen quite a few blog posts about all the best running gear, the fuel beloved by blogger x and the new tank top that is to die for.

Cool, except I don't care. No, that's not true. Not entirely true, anyway. I get that people want to share their favorites, but sometimes it's not all that relevant because people are so individual. Those tank tops I love? They probably wouldn't even cover up your chesticles. The gummy chews I can't have a long run without? Maybe they give you chronic diarrhea. You just don't know. So instead, I present to you.... all the crap you absolutely should never buy. Ever.

The Ab-Hancer: In fairness I'm 99% positive that this is a joke, but still. I get it if crunches are too much, but don't use this to separate the fat in your stomach into ab-shaped segments. Too far. 


The Slender Shaper: From what I can tell this is a vibrating diaper. You put it on over your butt, it's incredibly bulky and expensive and then i…

My Teenage Angst & Nuun Hoorays

Something weird happened today. The time was 2pm - one hour before nuun was set to announce their winners for the Hood to Coast Relay teams. I kept working like I had been all day. But my clock was broken! Not just the one on my computer, but the one on the oven. The clock on my phone. All of them. Seriously, they must have been broken because time was moving at a glacial pace.

I swear that the hour moved by so slowly. My poor computer hasn't had to hit refresh so often since that time I entered the lottery and wanted to check the winning number. (Spoiler: I didn't win the $100 billion. Next time.) 3PM finally rolled around, and with it the combination Twitter/Facebook/blog craziness that was "WOOO NUUN!" I'm not hating - I contributed to the brouhaha.

Long story short (sorry, not actually that short!): I made the team! I'm an official member of team AFTER nuun DELIGHT! (Kara - this wasn't even my suggestion. Nuun's brilliant call.)


I have to say tha…

I'm Allowed to Brag a Little, Right?

First up - the boasts. I had a good week of workouts, if I do say so myself!

Monday: REST DAY!
Tuesday: Cycled 4 Miles, Ran 7 Miles, Walked 1.5 Miles
Wednesday: Cycled 4 Miles, Ran 6.5 Miles
Thursday: Walked 4 Miles, 45 Minutes of Yoga
Friday: 13.1 Mile Trail Run
Saturday: Cycled 4 Miles, Ran 6.5 Miles
Sunday: 4.2 Mile Run, 45 Minutes of Yoga

Total: 37.3 miles of running, 5.5 miles of walking, 12 miles of biking, 90 minutes of yoga

Excuses: Time and mileage wise I'm really happy with this week. Except...that dang strength training proved elusive once again. I can't even blame lack of time or energy for this one - I CHOOSE not to do it. Could I sneak in push-ups in commercial breaks? Yep. Could I do 10 minutes of ab work instead of running an extra mile? Sure. Do I? Nope. Working on that....

Boasts: Tim found this picture of me on the local running club website yesterday. Most race pictures I just assume will be bad, or funny. I don't take it seriously because at a race I'm no…

It Feels Good Not to be Crazy

After Friday's trail run I was pretty much dead to the world. All I could handle was lazing around and then thinking about my next meal. Since the prospect of even cooking was beyond me we had a mini barbecue outside. Our grill may be 12 inches across but that works for me!



My parents bought us this grill when they came to visit last October and we hadn't used it since they left, so it was definitely time to break it out. I marinated some chicken breasts in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper before skewering them along with cherry tomatoes, green peppers and onions.


This was such a fun way to mix it up a little. Nothing fancy, but the smell of campfire smoke, some loud music blaring from the car, fresh corn on the cob and a tipple or two made for a really nice evening. Tim had a ready made frozen pina colada that you just stick in the freezer, and I have to say it was pretty amazing.


I pretended I was classy and had a glass of wine from a $6 bottle instead. Since …

Falling in Love on the Trail

*Warning: This post might make you puke a little bit in your mouth. I apologize in advance.

Since Tim works on Saturday mornings and Sunday mornings are now 7am group run days, we decided to push our long trail runs each week to Fridays. I'll just work on Saturdays instead of Fridays - the joys of working from home on your own schedule. Today we ran the Amadahy Trail around Carter's Lake, which is only a 30 minute drive from home. Each loop is 3.7 miles, so we did 3 loops and then an out and back at the end to make it a full 13.1 miles.



This was the longest run of Tim's life - and it happened to be on a trail. I could absolutely not be any prouder of him. I have to admit, I'm pretty loved up now. Smitten. Here are some reasons you can tell you're in love on a trail run:

#1: You can run behind someone for 13.1 miles (2 hours, 42 minutes) and still think their butt looks cute at the end of the run.

#2: You give away your last Honey Stinger chew. But then get the cho…

The Worst Kind of Blog Post

Want to know a pet peeve I have when reading blogs? Disclaimers. Not the good or necessary kind (I got this combination garlic chopper/running shoe FREE from company xyz!) but the kind that goes at the top of a blog post. You know what I mean. These ones:

Sorry I haven't posted! I have been super busy with work. I had a great weekend and took NO PICTURES!I really couldn't think of anything to say for this post...Wow, has it really been a week since I posted? I have nothing going on!
When I read a variation on the above, it's like a blinking light in my head goes off and tells me to press that little red x at the top of the screen. Seriously. You might as well just post in big bold letters at the top of the page DON'T READ THIS-NOTHING TO SAY.

Keep in mind - I don't mind if you forget to post for a few days. I don't post everyday and I could care less if anyone else does. But if you skip a day - don't worry about it! If you don't have pictures, who cares?…

Running, Biking and Adventure Races

At first I thought it was a fluke. A few weeks back I did a faux-triathlon (ugh, fine. I biked, ran and showered) and for some reason the 5k I ran AFTER biking an hour was way faster than normal. Lately my runs have been feeling slow, but on Sunday night I decided to test the theory once again.

In the morning, I ran 4.25 miles outside. Later that night I biked 12 miles in 45 minutes. I immediately got off the bike and hopped onto the treadmill and ran an 8:15 mile. The fact that it was faster than normal (way faster, let's be honest) wasn't even the shocking part. It felt better. I had better form, no hip pain and my breathing was under control.



Okay, so twice it happened. Still a theory, right? Today I cycled at medium resistance for 15 minutes (4 miles) and then started running.  Result - 7 miles at a 9:09 pace and no hip pain. Needless to say I will never be running again unless I've biked first.



I really don't get it. At all. I searched the web for a while trying t…

Weekly Recap & Barbecue Chicken Pizza

This whole week my workouts have felt a little off. Thanks to my digestive issues I have been purposely taking it slow for a while...and it has caught up with me. I feel like my running is harder than normal and I am putting in quite a lot of effort for a slower pace. That being said...I know how to fix that.

Run more.
Run faster.

So simple, yet so effective. This week's workouts:

Monday: Rest day.
Tuesday: Ran 6 miles.
Wednesday: Ran 6 miles.
Thursday: Ran 8 miles, 20 minutes of strength.
Friday: Cycled 18 miles.
Saturday: Ran 10 miles, 45 minutes of yoga.
Sunday: 4.25 mile group run, 45 minutes of spin, 1 fast TM mile

Total Mileage: 35 running, 30 biking

I'm starting to feel like a weekend warrior with exercise! Since I set my own schedule, there's really no reason for me to cram it in on the weekends, but I still do.


Goals for next week: Work out and stuff. That's it. And have one long trail run with Tim of 12+ miles. And maybe make some more of this pizza.



Last night I ce…

Long Runs and Hipster Bingo

Saturday might just have been the perfect day. Tim and I were up before 6 in order to get up to Chattanooga and have a long run there in the morning. 10 miles - check. We both worked for a few hours (Tim - actual work. Me-"work" on my laptop) and then went to the Chattanooga 4 Bridges Arts Festival in the afternoon. I tried to make myself presentable since there were people there with eyes and noses, but a baby wipe shower in a bathroom stall was all I could manage. Sorry, Chattanooga Residents.


There were probably a good 60 or 70 artists at the event and it was definitely pretty interesting. It should come as no surprise that my favorite pieces all came from the same artist who used food in each piece along with tiny little figurines. The setups were adorable - little people skiing down twist cone ice creams, for example. I bought a little print of one called "The Grape Escape" to hang up in the kitchen and I love it.


I'm pretty disappointed that we went to an…

How to Make Your House Smell Like a Hippie

My little sister is turning the big 2-3 in a few weeks and thanks to the mail system to Hong Kong (read: will take 2 weeks minimum to arrive) and I decided to get a head start and grab her birthday present today. I went to a local outlet mall in the afternoon because the idea of going there on a weekend is traumatic. I ended up with a few serious questions:

#1: Why do stolen frozen yogurt spoons make food taste better?


I can't help it. They're fun. They're cheap. They're one of the few things I can steal and not feel guilty. May as well, right? Otherwise they go in the trash, so no guilt.

#2: What, exactly, does dragon's blood smell like?

Tim and I were thinking about getting some incense and were browsing through some of the varieties. I smelled Dragon's Blood and I wasn't impressed. Kind of like Indian food? I don't think Daenerys Targaryen would be impressed.

#3: How many people read this sign and don't realize the pun?

They had another one that sa…

That's Just Awkward for Everyone

If I could get a round of applause for finishing my taxes last night, I would really appreciate it. I'm just really proud that I wasn't on the phone begging for an extension. I don't think "My dog ate my 1099 forms" works with the IRS, does it? While filling everything out I came across my absolute favorite question of the day. Read this:


The question is innocent enough - "Do You Have Children?" My problem lies in the important little addition below that: "If you're not sure..."

WHAT? People of America, if you are filling out your tax returns and "aren't sure" whether you have kids, you have serious problems. Does that happen often enough that Turbo Tax really needs to put a little disclaimer? REALLY?


Awkward questions like that remind me of the ONE time I tried to give blood, back when I was in college. I'm petrified of needles but I decided I would deal with the anxiety to be a good person. (Yeah, I don't know what …

100 Things To Eat Before You Die (But Don't Die)

I apologize if there are geriatric readers who don't appreciate a death reference in the title. Maybe I should rephrase it? Fine. Here are 100 things to eat before you turn 100! Perfect.

I've seen this list floating around online and I keep looking at it and trying to see how many of these 100 foods I have eaten. Rest assured, I have not. I tried to trace the list back to the source and I'm not sure where it began, honestly. It seems to be most popular HERE on Facebook so I'll link it up and feel good about not stealing content. Done. Anyway - here's the list. I've marked the ones I HAVE eaten in blue.

1. Abalone 2. Absinthe 3. Alligator  4. Baba Ghanoush 5. Bagel & Lox 6. Baklava 7. BBQ Ribs 8. Bellini 9. Birds Nest Soup (Really popular in Hong Kong but EXPENSIVE!) 10. Biscuits & Gravy 11. Black Pudding 12. Black Truffle 13. Borscht 14. Calamari 15. Carp 16. Caviar 17. Cheese Fondue 18. Chicken & Waffles 19. Chicken Tikka Masala 20. Chile Rellenos 21. Chitlins 22. Chu…

Dealing With Holiday Depression

I sometimes wonder if people who have met me in real life are surprised by the contrast between my blog persona and my actual personality. Perhaps the biggest revelation is that on days where I don't post, it's not always because I'm having such a freaking awesomely amazing time that I can't get away from the action and find my computer.

Want to know what it would be like if I actually posted how I felt on those bad days?

Hey guys. Slept in this morning. No reason - just didn't feel like getting out of bed. Couldn't be bothered to make breakfast, but got hungry after an hour and ate 1/2 pound of chocolate. Started watching Shahs of Sunset. Surprisingly entertaining, but felt brain cells dying so cracked open a book. Read nonstop for 7 hours while eating. I am always impressed by my ability to eat and read at the same time. Skills. 

Unfortunately, I'm afraid those kind of posts aren't super entertaining, so I avoid them. But I'm about to get real on yo…

Virtual Trail Races and Ice Baths

It's official. Saturday = trail run day. I love the new tradition Tim and I have. I don't have the same long run anxiety when I know it's just going to be a chance to hang out somewhere scenic. Today we ran at the Amadahy Trail around Carter's Lake. It's really convenient - less than thirty minutes from home which is basically just down the road for our rural location.

We planned on doing the 3.8 mile loop 3 times but Tim was having shoe/blister trouble and to be honest...I was happy to cut it short. So we made it two loops (7.6 miles) in 1:34. Still strange to be working so hard and see a 12 minute mile pace! Once we got home I added 3.1 miles on the treadmill to up the mileage a little and use it for the Jelly Bean Virtual Race!



So...funny story. Notice how Tim's head is missing in the picture? Don't blame my bad photography skills. A few days ago he was buzzing his hair and accidentally shaved a certain portion of the head, um...basically bald. So I had …

How to Make Science Fun. Really, Really Fun.

Hypothesis: Cadbury Mini Eggs bought in the UK will be superior in taste, texture and smell to their lowly American counterparts.



Experiment: Taste testing done with one bag of UK purchased Cadbury Mini Eggs and one bag bought from Wal Mart in Georgia. Participants will taste both varieties without bias and compare the exterior shell, overall crunch, taste, creaminess factor and aroma upon opening bag.




Observation/Data Collection: Through extensive sampling, participants were able to note the following:

-While the main ingredient in American bags is sugar, in English bags the main ingredient is milk


-UK shells are thinner and have a less sweet taste
-Color variations are evident. English bags lack blue and instead have a purple egg variety.
-UK mini eggs have a freckled appearance rather than a solid color shell


 -US mini eggs are definitely sweeter and creamier. The UK version has a stronger cocoa taste.

Conclusion: They are both freaking delicious. Participants struggled to avoid consu…