May 2010


New avatar for Twitter? Of course it includes Ruthie!!

Well, where do I start?  Maybe with a few observations I’ve made over the last few days and an explanation of the pictures at the top of this post.

New pic for work if I crop it?

I want you all to know, I do wear NORMAL CLOTHES and can look NORMAL when out of running gear.  I need a new avatar picture for Twitter, as well as a decent picture to put on research guides we do at work, so I had him take some last night.

Bill took a ridiculous number of photos of me this morning, wherein I’m stuffing my new shorts with stuff, so much so that you’d wonder how I could walk, let alone run. (sigh)  And, looking at many of them, I see they have the uniboob bra look going on. (Ladies, no further explanation needed, right?)  I found out yesterday when shopping for a new one, that I have been wearing them too small.  Let’s hope the new one doesn’t chaff my skin all to hell.

Pre-Race Carbo Loading:

You know you eat too much Thai food when the local Thai restaurant knows your voice and order over the phone, and when you walk in, they ask you how your running is going. They missed me last year when I didn’t do any distances over the 15K mark. For the record, the meal of choice that works for me for long runs is Country Pad Thai with Chicken and Shrimp, and an order of Steamed Shu-Mei.

A Favor to Ask of Women Everywhere Who Run:

Please, please, please , for the love of all that is good and holy, make sure at least your pants and/or shorts/running skirts fit properly, or at the very least, are not too small, even if they don’t fit you correctly otherwise.  Example – before the race, I’m on the ground, stretching, and Bill says to me, “Terri, look up and straight in front of you.”  Thanks to Bill for that image – it was the butt crack of a rather large woman sitting down on the bench in front of me. (I don’t want to sound snarky that she was overweight, just that I wish her capri tights had fit better.)  He still felt the need to giggle like a school girl. Yes, folks, my husband is 3 years old. That’s right, I married a 3 year old. 🙂  (Ladies, am I the only one with this problem? Somehow, I think not.)

However, I did see another woman running toward the beginning of the race, who I think was all in powder blue.  Her running skirt – well, she either had matching blue underwear, or it was the compression shorts doing something they never should do. Long story short, she had the biggest wedge I’ve ever seen, and I saw way too much of her butt cheeks. My thought “wow, I didn’t need to see that, and also, it’s only the first mile, that CANNOT be comfortable.”  Yet another reason I don’t think I’ll ever wear a running skirt, I cannot imagine pulling that crap down every few seconds for miles to go.

By the way, folks, you are all VERY WELCOME for that image. 🙂  I had to live with it, now  you can too. 🙂

Best Distances for Me:

I am a much better runner at distances up to about 10K.  Really, the 5 mile race seems to be where my strength lies.  I’ve even broken what I consider the elusive 8 minute barrier for some of my miles run in the 3Mile and 5K range, and over the past year, I’ve been happy to place sometimes in the top 25% or top 1/3 of folks in my division or overall.  That rapidly slides downward when I try to go further.

Spent the $ on Optic Nerve running sunglasses. Bigger than I'd normally wear, but less dorky than the hat, no?

I should have taken the 5Mile option for today, but today was good for my first attempt at the distance since November 2008, when it was much cooler and I ran a half in something around 2:17. I need to keep in mind, today was really more of a training run for me, and it was hot out (well, very sunny, and 68ish to start).  My asthma didn’t start to affect me until about mile 11 or so, when I was definitely finding it more difficult to catch my breath.

Twitter and iPhone Apps and How They Can Help:

So, if any of you followed me on Twitter today, you already have an idea of how I did.  I used the I Map My Walk app on my iphone, which enables gps and also connects to your Twitter account. The gps is definitely a bit off as I have found over a few trials, and then today, when it said I ran 13.68 and my Garmin said 13.24.  But part of the race was in downtown Boston and anyone who’s run or driven in a bigger city knows how the building can mess with the GPS, even the one in your car.  So while my official time was much slower than I wanted, at 2:15.24.  My Garmin  had me at 2:14 and some change, with 13.14 for distance, and I was like “damn, I’m not at the finish line yet!? Go away, blasted sun!”  Also, the minutes per mile do seem a bit slower than reality – I noticed that the other day when I tried it out on a 3 mile run – 9:35 on the phone which was actually 9 flat, 9:08 when actually 9 flat (it takes it a bit to warm up, I think.)

However, I will say this about that app – if someone is your “friend” on the app, they can do real-time tracking and see where you are on the route. This is great if you have folks trying to meet up with you in places – they know exactly where you are. If you are running a full or half marathon, I’d suggest paying the $1.99 if you have the iphone. For the spectator, it’s worth it. Plus, the iphone GPS worked through the material of my camelbak.

Stats:

  • Division: F 30-39; 599/968
  • Overall: 3468/4950
  • Fastest mile on my Garmin: 8:53 (yep, mile 2, too early)
  • Slowest mile: let’s not talk about it

Race course:

view of the start and finish line from walkway over Seaport World Trade Center

It was really well supported with cops/state troopers (this is a race to honor law enforcement who have been killed in action, so of course, they were there in large attendance) blocking off all of the roads.   It started near the Seaport World Trade Center, so there were good sea breezes down there. It takes you through downtown Boston, past  City Hall, and some other notable areas, before shooting you over the Longfellow Bridge onto the Cambridge side of the river. (You know, the city with a few world-class academic institutions.)

Stuffing 1 of 2 back pockets, these shorts are awesome, will review them @ later date

Running on Memorial Drive is usually pretty cool to do, especially since this part of the course is an out-and-back and you can see the leaders coming toward you at one point.  You can see the skyline of Boston.  It’s also pretty flat. Unfortunately for me today, it was flat and BORING. Really, I think that was part of what did me in. It just kept going on and on and on. We turned around near the university that encases a lot of its buildings in brick, and around mile 8, I saw Bill. He’d seen me earlier but I had not seen him (somewhere around mile 4, I think? When I was still running well, somewhere in the 36-37 minute range.)  With all the traffic, he was lucky to get back to the finish right before I did, which tells you something, because around the time I saw him, I told him I felt like I had nothing left in the tank.

Racers on Memorial Drive, across the river from Boston

The good news (for me anyway) were no stomach issues on today’s run. I stuck with NUUN in  my camelbak and Powerbar Gel Double Espresso 2x Sodium and Endurolytes. (So glad I can still use those, they are like miracle pills.) However, I wonder if I do need to go with more carbs in my drink, guess I can try Gatorade again over the next few weeks.

I tried to go with the advice that one of you had given me to repeat “never quit, never die” in my mind, but it wasn’t working as well as I had hoped.  I think I need to get back some mental toughness and focus when the distances goes longer than 10K. (My first 10K was at 58/59 minutes though, which is encouraging for me come this fall when I run the Tufts 10K, which is a course I know well, and a major part of it is on, go figure…Memorial Drive!)

So, while I am disappointed in my overall time, and a bit worried about my coach’s reaction when I tell him (because he thinks I can do 1:52, for which I think he’s on crack), I need to remember, it’s still better than 18 months ago.  This was my first run at this distance in 18 months – I’m still building endurance.  And, there’s always room for improvement. The legs are there (luckily no pain today, even at the end), the heart is there, the lungs are (usually) there, it’s just the brain I need to work on. When all work in conjunction with each other, as we all know, it’s a beautiful thing.

Happy Memorial Day, everybody!


"24" image by John Griffiths, via flickr.com

Or, should I say, the mornings after, when I used to watch 24 and Lost on DVR?!  Really.  You guys out there who are fans of either show will understand.  (If you’ve never watched either, ARE YOU SERIOUS?)

 No more Tuesday emails back and forth with my friend, Karl, another 24 fan. No more wondering how Freddie Prinze Jr.’s awful acting still has not gotten his character killed off. (Realy, could he have been more stiff?) No more listening to Jack Bauer yell at people as his normal tone of voice, or watching and hoping Dahlia Hassan just goes nuts and whales off a great bitch slap at President Taylor’s face! 

No more Lost. No more of me saying “I love Sawyer!” every time they show his character on screen, or listening to him call Hurley various names. No more scratching of the head and saying “huh?” to whatever just happened on the screen, and then watching Bill get frustrated because I didn’t understand (of course, sometimes I may have been distracted by whatever I was trying to do on my computer at the same time, I admit it.)  The creators of that show truly were genius.  And yes, I did like the finale in case you’re wondering. I cried.

If you people have never watched either show, I have one word for you: Netflix. I should not have to explain this any further. 🙂

Anyway, enough of my complaining.  I can always wait with baited breath for the return of the Vampire Diaries and Supernatural. Two shows that when they come on, my husband needs to excuse himself so he can stab himself in the eye repeatedly with a fork, just to get himself out of his misery.  Nah, not too dramatic!  (Ladies, agree with me on this if nothing else — Ian Somerhalder is beautiful, and his character Damon is by far the best developed and acted one on the show!)

So, today was the second day of 90+ temps in the Boston area.  I’ve been continuing to do a lot of gardening/mulching stuff outdoors, and I guess it’s helping me to acclimate to the weather, if there can be a good upside to sweating as much as I have the last few days. Luckily, my husband and his friend who lives across the street helped to put in all 4 of our window units, so tonight the house is bearable. Ruthie the dog isn’t panting just to survive, anyway.

We had track practice tonight.   Those of us training for full or half marathons were originally supposed to do 8 x 800s with active recovery, but because of the heat, I don’t think anyone did more than 6. I didn’t.  My fastest was probably somewhere in the 3:49 range (compared to something like 3:40 a few weeks ago), and I had one really bad one in the middle where I didn’t get enough time in between, and it showed, because my time was something like 4:08.  I carried my inhaler the whole way just in case.  It’s not like I usually feel like I am going to have an attack or anything (don’t worry, Mom, I’m not stupid, I take it easy when I need to), but it does help me to recover faster than I otherwise would, I think.

For those of you wondering what some of our other workouts have been, last week’s was what they call a “whistle workout.” For two minutes, those of us doing longer distances would run at a hard pace, and then when they blew the whistle, we’d run slower to recover for one minute. They’d blow the whistle and the whole thing would start again, for 8 repeats. We then get a break for about 3 minutes to drink water, etc., and then you’re off again for another 8 repeats, or a total of 48 minutes running time.   They had us running around the North Andover Town Common in the pouring rain rather than the track, so it was a nice change. My mileage added up to somewhere around 5.5 miles that night too! 

And now, because I have to get up early and get more gardening done, to quote Desmond, and (as I saw, on Lindsay’s blog, it’s one  of her favorite lines too): “See you on the other side, brotha!”

"Lost" by Sebas, via flickr.com

I admit I have not been blogging so much lately. I have a good excuse. It’s called mulch. Lots of it. Six yards of it.  If you are wondering, ” Terri, just how much is six yards of mulch?” then let me tell you, this is an amount of mulch that gets delivered via dump truck and the pile is so large, that ten days later, I am still at it.  I’ve had three good work days out there so far, at least 3-4 hours worth each day, filling up my wheelbarrow over and over and over…wait for it….and over, again.  It’s hot (some days more so than others, today being a steamy one), but it’s something I enjoy doing.  Our neighbors definitely appreciate it, as we understand that before we moved in, no one living in our house could grow grass in the front lawn, and when you drive into our neighborhood from one direction, since we live on a corner, our house is one of the first you see. We’ve been told that we do good work!

I’ve also been planting annuals (purple Midnight Dreams petunias, to be exact), and for once, bought too few, rather than too many. So, I’ve got to go back and buy more tomorrow, along with veggies.  Bill spent most of Sunday making a pen and gate to go around what will be part of our veggie garden, as Ruthie, our yellow lab (focus on the word “yellow” for a second) found it enjoyable to sit in the nice black, composted dirt I put down in preparation for our veggies. 🙂

Me, trying to "break out" of my pen/cage (not the best pic of me, but oh well!)

 Bill spent most of Sunday making a pen and gate to go around what will be part of our veggie garden, as Ruthie, our yellow lab (focus on the word “yellow” for a second) found it enjoyable to sit in the nice black, composted dirt I put down in preparation for our veggies. 🙂  That garden is about 7-8 feet by 14 feet. Hopefully we’ll get some good crops this year, we’ve not had such good luck the past two summers, so we’re going to get starter plants from a different nursery. I really would like to start from seed, but I’m not sure I have enough indoor space.

Oh, and I’ve also been running a fair amount. We’ve had weird weather – pouring rain during most of last week’s track session, and some major heat today (hit about 90, with high 80s forecasted for tomorrow.)  I did a 12 mile run this past Sunday on the course that I am running a half-marathon on, at the end of June.  Here I need to give a shout-out to someone with whom I talk regularly on Twitter, but who for privacy reasons, I won’t mention by  name because he lives near where the race will be held. (You know who you are.)  You were very patient in answering all of my silly questions about where to park, bathrooms, etc., and I am very grateful!  (So silly of Meg and I to drive the course ahead of time and not pay attention to stuff like that. We were so preoccupied with figuring out how bad the hills are!)  And a major thanks for reminding me to be careful, those roads really are narrow and windy.  I felt like I had my own tour guide ahead of time, and honestly, it’s the little unknown things like that, which nonsensically, can make me very stressed sometimes. So, anyway, thank you.

The good news is that while the course has some KILLER hills (and I mean killer, they just go on and on and on, and wait for it, on and on…) it also has some major downhills, and there is a lot of shade cover.  I was told that the roads I’d be running on are called The Road In the Woods by some “younger folks,” and they really are. The course makes you feel like you are running in the woods for a lot of portions, yet you don’t need to worry about tripping over roots!  Also, because my GI system has been giving me issues on runs lately (no pun intended, LOL), I kept my eyes out for areas where, if necessary, in a pinch, I could make a run to take care of business and be somewhat private. (Hey, you never know.)

I also know what shirt I am probably not wearing that day. Not sure if it was my bra, or my camelbak strap, but I got some major chaffage on my neck.  My husband and one of my guy coworkers was like “you look like you got a hickey!”  Yes, that’s just what  I want to look like, at work, at age 37.   SIGH. I feel like I should be wearing a sign saying “I ran on Sunday and this is chaffing, not what you think it is!” with a finger pointing to my neck.  (At any rate, diaper rash ointment seems to be helping.)

Oh, and I found I am capable of driving with two ice bags on my legs. Where I ran is about 30-40 minutes from my house on the highway and I didn’t want to be too stiff for the rest of the day so I stopped, bought two bags, and took care of things.  And no, I don’t drive a stick shift (although I am very capable of doing so, I actually like driving  a manual transmission!)

Anyway, folks, here’s the deal.  There is NO WAY IN HELL that I am going to do 1:52 on that half-marathon course. There are too many hills. I am not trying to be dramatic, just trying to be realistic. In fact, I’m more likely to run faster this weekend at Boston’s Run to Remember Half-Marathon (which I’m doing as a long run with several thousand of my closest friends), because it’s a much, much flatter course.)

I’ve been trying to add “progression runs” into my workouts, meaning every mile you run gets faster with the last mile being run at about your 10K pace or faster. My coach said I should try to do at least one of 5-6 miles per week. Another run he wants me to do is 35-40 minutes of “comfortable but hard” running.  The progression run I attempted on Friday was halted due to my needing to visit the fine establishment of McDonalds at 6:30 a.m., and the sad realization that I probably can no longer use Sports Beans. (Believe me, this bothers me.) Yeah, that really wasn’t so much fun.   I tried it again today – it was already in the 70s with humidity levels upwards of 74-75% so I’m happy that all but one of my miles “progressive.” (The third mile involved some walking, as I didn’t have water with me. Stupid, I know. I just didn’t feel like carrying it.)

Anyway, my next post will include info on our track workouts, in case some of you are interested in doing track workouts but just don’t have a group around you like we do.  Tomorrow’s workout just might kill me if it stays this hot! (8 800s, with active recovery in between!)

Thanks for reading!

Running track, photo by Dr. Geee, flickr.com

I’m in shock tonight for two reasons. One is awesome, and the other…yeah, not so much.

Ok, bad one first. Got home from track practice tonight (yep, it started last week), took off my running shirt to jump into the shower, and guess what I saw?  That’s right, blood on my running bra.  I silently freaked out (ok, maybe not so silently because I was worried I had the problem usually only guy runners have), and then realized it was from one of the seams on my running bra. 

Note to Jill of Jill Will Run – I’ve been meaning to write you with this piece of advice for your bigger busted Team Challenge runners  – lube up “the girls” before every run. I mean, REALLY lube them up with Glide.  At first, it may seem weird, but they should just take it from me, it’s necessary.  Tonight, my Glide stick was getting down to the bottom so I guess I just didn’t use enough.  Or, it’s a sign from above that I need new running bras. (Speaking of, ladies, (or men, if you for some reason know this, and if so, don’t tell me how — please), how do you know when your running bras are shot?)

Anti-Monkey Butt Powder, pic from drugstore.com

So, as I sit here, I have Anti-Monkey Butt Powder on my boob.  There, I’ve said it. One sentence in the English language I never thought I’d say, er, write. I’m 37, and I’m out of diaper rash ointment even though I have no kids, so I’ve resorted to what I have left in the house.   There’s another statement I never thought I’d utter, er, write, either. Two for two. Anyhoo…the anti-monkey butt stuff works well for what it’s (ahem) designed for, so I thought, “why not?”

Oh, and the second reason I’m sitting here shocked — well, because of something my coach said to me tonight which shocked the s*&H*#(t out of me.  He thinks I should be able to do a half marathon at the end of June in about 1:52.   I just kind of looked at him like he’d been smoking something causing hallucinations, and I wondered if he’d be willing to share (JUST KIDDING!)

I was not going to say anything about my time goal for the half-marathon I’m planning at the end of June because I was worried about disappointing myself and all of you, especially with the course having a fair number of hills (and a nice number of downhills, I have to admit.)  But now I guess I’ll put it out there.  I was going to try for 2 hours.  I said that to my coach after saying to him “there’s no way I can do a half in that time” and he looked at me like I was lying to myself.  He thought that based on all the paces I’ve been running, I should be able to handle a half-marathon at that pace, and be able to hold onto 8:25/8:30 minute miles.  (Please keep in mind when I did 2 halves in 2008, my times were something like 2:15 an 2:18, although I was training for a full at the time. Speed was not something I had.)

Personally, I think he has a whole lot more faith in my abilities than I do. But it was really nice to hear something like that. He certainly helped me tonight to push myself on my last 400.  He said it didn’t look like I was too taxed (or something to that effect) being able to do all of the intervals tonight at paces below 8 minute miles, so that’s why he thought I should be able to do the half at that fast pace.

So, I don’t know we’ll see – he did give me advice on what paces to run a lot of my runs during the week. I just don’t want to completely stress myself out on all of my runs, you know? I’m going to try but I also don’t want to get injured.

In case you are wondering, or want to try doing what we’ve been doing (without having to go to a scheduled practice), here’s what we’ve been doing:

Last week:

Run 3 1-mile repeats, with a partner.  One person runs, the other person times. The goal is for each mile, to run each lap faster than the lap before it. This doesn’t mean that you have to pick  a pace to start off with that you can then build on for the next 12 laps, just for the next four.  The idea is that each mile should roughly come in around the same time, give or take a few seconds, if you are pacing yourself right.

My first  mile= 7:54; second mile = 7:53; third mile = 7:57.  (This last mile had my fastest 400 though, of 1:46.  I love having a kick!)  Most of my first laps were about 2:05-6ish, then I tried to speed them up by at  least 3-5 seconds per lap, and try to go as fast as I could on the 4th for each repeat.

This week – ladder workout:

For the folks running 25 or more miles per week (which this week will likely include me, as I have to run 10 miles this weekend, we did the following (everyone else was either doing shorter distances or the walk-to-run program):

  • 400 – 5k pace (1 minute rest)
  • 800 – 5k pace (1:30 minute rest)
  • 1200 – 5k pace (2 minute rest)
  • 1200 – 5k pace (2 minute rest)
  • 800 – 3k pace (1:30 minute rest)
  • 400 – mile pace

My coach wanted me to keep the 1200s with 1:54 laps (those were certainly hard, I may have missed the mark by a second here or there, especially for the second 1200.) When I was on the last lap, he ran over, caught me at the 200 mark and yelled out that he wanted me to try to do it in less than 1:45.   I looked down at my watch, saw 48 seconds, and basically thought “holy shit, I’m dead!”  The second 200 was definitely difficult, but I’m so happy to say I did it and looked down just as my watch changed to 1:37. I did actually see the number 1:36 there for less than 1/100th of a second!! I honestly don’t think I’ve run a 400 in that pace since high school, which, as all of you can tell who can handle basic math, was about 20 years ago. (EEK, THAT IS A SCARY THOUGHT!)

Oh, and I’ve broken down and bought a foam roller. Give it up to the power of persuasion. I saw that such fasties like Lindsay bought one, and I know she never stretches (god only knows how she does the running she does without it), so I thought “hey, I want one too!” Still getting the hang of it — it feels weird. (The first time I used it – my legs felt more tired afterward – does that make any sense?)

Anyway, signing off for the night – if you’ve reached the end, you’re really a hard-core blog reader, aren’t you?!

I will try to not be my usual wordy self and keep these somewhat brief. 🙂 

As the saying goes here in the Boston area, if you don’t like the weather, wait a few minutes, it’ll change.  How true. 

Corey and I before the race. Corey's a super natural athlete! (Ran Boston twice!)

Last week’s race was on May 2nd, the Kick In for the Kids 4.2 miler. Temps were hot enough before we started at 11 a.m. (a normal start time for races around here at the beginning of May) that, just standing still, I felt sweat dripping down my chest. Never a good sign when you have to run 4.2 miles in that weather. 

This week’s race – Melrose Run for Women – well, let’s see. Race time of 9 a.m. (because it’s held on Mother’s Day, I think.)  Temps in low 40s.  Winds of 20-22 mph, with wind gusts in the 40 mph range.  How nice it would have been for that wind to be at our backs.  Yep, you guessed it. It was in our face for a fair portion of the race.  Running downhill – usually my favorite thing to do in a race because we all know that RUNNING DOWNHILL = FREE SPEED!  Except when  you’re running headfirst into the wind, that is.  Yep, even at the finish line. 

OOh, an action shot - they don't happen often, so look fast!

Last week’s race – the Kick In for the Kids 4.2 miler  – mainly a flat course, but so hot and humid I thought I was gonna die.  Bill said to me afterward that he knew I’d not end the race wearing my shirt (which was a sleevess tank, by the way).   This week’s race attire – capri tights, long sleeve shirt, my Boston Marathon volunteer jacket in puke green, and gloves that I kept putting on and taking off as my constantly fluctuating body temps demanded. 

Last week’s race stats: 

  • Course – mainly flat, few hills, 4.2 miles
  • 114/197 overall; 10/20 W30-39
  • Official time: 42 minutes flat (Average pace = 10:00 minute/mile)
  • Terri’s Garmin time: 41:55 (average pace = 9:59 minute/mile)

This week’s race stats: 

  • Course – rolling hills, 3.5 miles
  • 95/870 overall; 38/220 W30-39 (wahoo!!)
  • Official time: 28:50 (average pace = 8:14 minute/mile)
  • Terri’s “I think because my Garmin got screwed up, and there was no time clock at the finish line – WTF?”:  28:40 (making average pace = 8:11/mile)

Right now, I know Lindsay is sitting there, reading this bit about my pace, and laughing while shaking her head. I know she is. (She had to sit through all my math calculations after the BAA 5K, while I tried to rationalize how I really ran faster than what I did, based on what my Garmin showed as distance.) 

Corey, in the lineup at the beginning of the race. Ahem, he started in front of me!

Anyway, the attempt with both races was to use them as tempo runs, because quite honestly, the whole idea of a tempo run just scares the bejesus out of me.  Well, 1 for 2 isn’t bad on that score, I guess.  During both races,  I felt like I just wanted them to be over, but for different reasons. Last week, because of the heat. This week, because I was running as fast as I thought I could go, and hold on ’til the end. 

Both runs had good causes behind them.  Last week’s race raised money for Boys and Girls Club of Woburn, MA. This week’s race donates all the proceeds to combat domestic violence. The race field has become progressively larger every year. It helps that afterward, you are given a carnation by a cute kid, and there are so many baked goods, it’s like nirvana for people like me who have a sweet tooth. (And there’s the usual water, bananas, bagels, along with Skinny Water, a new sponsor this year! Yay!)

Finishing- thank you God!

As you can tell, sprinkled throughout this report, I only have pics from last week. I told Bill to sleep in yesterday morning since it was so windy and the course was one where he only sees me at the beginning and end.   I just don’t understand why there wasn’t a time clock at the end this year – they’ve always had one in the past!! And they didn’t have time clocks at miles 1 and 3, but a live human  yelling out times. No mile marker for mile 2 – luckily, I realized right after I passed the human clock at mile 1, that my watch hadn’t started properly and got it started right away. 

Action shot - notice the lack of a running shirt.

Otherwise I would not have had anything to go on, distance-wise, other than my memory of the race course, which is very pretty, glad to say.  I am guessing at my “real” finish time based on what a lady who changed places with me throughout the race was told as her time for the first mile – 8 minutes flat. I recognized her from a few other races I’ve run this year by the fact that her capri tights are covered in large flowers – believe me, you remember them when you see them – I have no idea where she buys them, but they’re a nice break from the usual boring black! 

By the way, is it abundantly obvious to everyone from these photos that I need some color, as in SUN, badly?! God, I look like a white pastie!Anyway, I’m going to sign off now and for the night – I’m hoping to get in about 5-6 miles in the morning. We have a frost warning tonight (yikes) so it’ll be cool in the morning (glove-worthy, I suspect) but I always run better in the cold, so bring it on! Looking forward to starting the flex/vacation combined schedule next week and catching up on everyone’s blogs even more.

Ok, I guess I failed on the “briefness” bit, didn’t I?!

Ah Dad, not this again?! (Sigh. Ok.)

Ruthie seems to be a big hit whenever I post pictures of her here or on Twitter, so I thought her fans might enjoy reading some observations her dad (Bill) and I have made over the course of the last 9 months.  Who knows, maybe some of these can even be applied to our human lives!

  1. 1.  If anyone in the house is getting a treat, be it the cats, or Mommy sneaking cookies, we should all get a treat. Everybody wins!
  2. 2.  If you take a walk, or go outside to pee, you get a treat for doing as expected.
  3. 3.  If it’s a weekend, I expect and demand  a long walk, at minimum 2-3 times per day. Followed by a treat.
  4. 4.  When taking a poop while outside on a walk, you need to leave the scene of the crime immediately after trying to cover it up by kicking dirt in Mommy or Daddy’s face.
  5. Mommy and Daddy love me a lot, even if they do make me look kind of silly in all these pictures. I put up with it because this is the best house I’ve ever lived in, and I never want to leave. 🙂
  6. If you’re a human and on the floor, there can only be one reason why, and that’s to pet me and show me love.
  7. Every day I get up, no matter how early Mommy gets up, it’s the BEST DAY EVER! With the BEST MEALS EVER! With the BEST WALKS EVER! 🙂 
  8. By the way, it’s “Miss Ruthie” to you!
     

    Dear God, I look like Yoda.

My race report from yesterday’s 4.2 miler will be coming – all I can say is this: running in heat SUCKS and running in heat and humidity, especially when not acclimated to it, REALLY SUCKS!

With these words of Ruthie playing in your head,  I will leave you to marvel at her intelligence and sheer cuteness.

That's It. I. Submit.