Monday, June 24, 2013

Making My List..

Before I get into the true topic of this post I am soooo excited to announce that I am a new Sweat Pink Ambassador as well as a new Girls Gone Sporty Ambassador! Both emails came on the same day! How cool is that?! I am already loving being a part of this group of amazing, inspiring, and strong ladies!

Girls Gone Sporty Ambassador Badge

So, on to what I have been meaning to post about for a couple days.  I mentioned awhile back (way back here) about my thought of a goal to run a half marathon in each of the 50 states but never really followed up on if The Husband thought I was nuts or not.  Well, turns out he didn't, and he is actually liking the idea of checking out all the states.  Also, although he said he would never run a half, I actually have talked him into running some with me! Exciting!  So, I have begun making my list for all the half marathons I want to run in each state.  I have a semi-finished list at this point but soon I will put a tab at the top so I can add to it.

After thinking about this goal, and how long it could take, and the fact that I could keel over one day and never finish (kidding), I decided that I wanted another goal that would happen sooner!  Enter 35 before 35! I really wanted to do 30 before 30 but we are just transitioning to being a single income family so that I can homeschool the kids. Considering that I will be 30 in 2 years and around 2 months, there aren't all that many half marathons within driving distance so travel/hotels would be included a lot, we decided that 35 before 35 would be more manageable.  It averages out to around 4 a year so the plan is to do 2 out of state toward my 50 state goal and 2 that are local.

Another exciting thing is that this allows us to re-do any race we really like and try other races in Ohio without me stressing that we should be doing a race out of state to put it toward my 50 state goal.

Here's the list for this coming year, I believe:

November 2013:   Marshall Half Marathon                                        Huntington, WV
March 2014:         Just a Short Run Half Marathon                            Allison Park, PA
May 2014:            The Flying Pig 3-way (5k,10k,Half)                     Cincinnati, OH
                             The Indy Mini Marathon                                       Indianapolis, IN
September 2014:   Twilight Red Rock Half Marathon                         Las Vegas, NV
October 2014:       Nationwide Children's Hospital Half Marathon      Columbus, OH

I am excited to start doing all of these races! Luckily 2 of those are within driving distance and one is being incorporated into our vacation.  I am also excited to say that The Husband has some running friends in Vegas who we think will run the Vegas run with us.  It has a 1000ft elevation gain in the 1st 5 miles, though, so that should be fun. Orrr something like that!

This weekend, The Husband and I are running the Biggest Loser 10k in Charleston, Wv.  I am pretty excited to run my first race with him and to do another race.  I was having withdraws =).

Anybody have a half marathon they want to recommend for me to add to my list?
Has anyone run any of the Biggest Loser races? 
Happy Running!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Beach Vacation 2013

The Husband and I have talked endlessly about moving somewhere that we can be closer to the ocean.  We both love the south and the beach but we have been held back for various reasons.  However, we just found out he got a new job through the federal government so it may open some opportunities to transfer here in a couple years (yay!).  Anyway, I was sooooooo beyond ready for vacation this year. I apologize in advance for the 8 trillion pictures I will most likely subject you to in this post! =)

We had a pretty busy week with getting the house ready for my Grandma to come house/dog sit and then Curly had her dance recital on Sunday and then we got up really early Monday June 3rd to head south.

  Our kids haven't been the greatest car riders but we were hoping they would do well.  We flew to Florida last year but in the meantime they had lots more opportunities to "practice" long rides when we would make the 4.5-5hr drives to see The Husband some weekends while he was working out of town.  In all, the 10 hour drive wasn't very bad.  The kids mostly stayed entertained and didn't fight very badly and we had a pretty smooth trip.  We stopped about half way or so to have a picnic lunch because we were trying to not outdo ourselves on "bad" vacation food.  The place we stopped was pretty neat.  It was called Pilot Mountain and when we asked the Ranger where there was a picnic area he told us "about a mile and a half that way" as he pointed up the road.  Well, we found out it was a mile and a half UP the mountain.  The views were sooo pretty from up there!
Taken on the way home but we ate lunch at the very top of that "knob"

Day One: We got to Myrtle Beach at around 4:30 and went straight to the hotel to check in.  We were right on the beach and on the 21st floor so those views were pretty amazing, also! The room turned out to be fairly nice with a small kitchenette, a living area, and a separate bedroom. We didn't have a ton of time that night so we decided to just take a walk on the beach and head back to the hotel and order food from the hotel restaurant to eat in our room. 
The view from our balcony
Night One
Day Two (Tuesday): I got up pretty early this morning and went for a short run (2.55 miles) on the exercise path that ran along the beach road.  It was so nice to run and have an ocean view. We went to this little Zoological Center.  They advertise it as a zoo but I wouldn't really consider it that.  There were lots of animals like deer, ostriches, goats, bison, ponies, a camel etc. that you could feed from either bags you buy at the front or from the quarter machines throughout the property.  I have to say that I wasn't impressed with this place.  The kids liked being able to feed the animals but they were in small cages and it just wasn't the conditions I like to see animals in.

After the "Zoo" we went back to the hotel, ate lunch, and went to get lunch and hit the beach.  Rex scares me because he has NO fear of the ocean.  He doesn't care if we are beside him or not, he just bounds out into the water.  Curly barely wants to get her feet wet and she wants me holding her had when she does even that! =)  So, this trip to the ocean for actual swimming was interesting.  The Husband was taking Rex a little further out into the water while he held him and as I was standing at the edge of the water I saw a small shark swim straight toward my boys and curve right around The Husband's legs and keep going.  Now, anyone who knows me knows that sharks are my biggest fear! I have gotten better but my heart used to speed up to just see them on TV so of course I start panicking and calling them back in! It was pretty nerve wracking for me.
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Day 3 (Wednesday): This day we went to the Alligator Adventure place.  Rex is obsessed with all thing prehistoric and lately has focused some of that attention on alligators and crocodiles.  We figured he would get a kick out of this place and we were right.  They also boast the largest crocodile in captivity Utan who is 18ft long and 2000lbs!! It was pretty incredible to see an animal that large with that many teeth. They also have a large group of albino alligators which is also a pretty spectacular sight.  We saw a live show and a feeding while we were there and the kids really enjoyed it.  On this evening, I took another short run.  My dad and sisters were walking down from their hotel so I couldn't take a long run but ended up doing about 2 miles at a faster pace than normal. 

Day 4 (Thursday): We had some rain and bad weather this day because of the tropical storm making its way up the coast.  The Husband also had his phone interview for his new job so we hung around the room for awhile and when it was almost time for his interview the kids and I vacated the room and went to TCBY and some of the beach shops while he interviewed.  Then that evening we went out to dinner and went shell hunting on the beach.  The waves were pretty brutal from that storm and had washed out a huge portion of the beach the night before. It was nice and flat though so when the kids told me they wanted to run, we did.  We would run out pretty far and then back to The Husband.  I would say we got in around a mile all said and done? 

Day 5 (Friday): I got up again this morning and took a short run.  I ended up running about a 5k but it seemed SO much farther because I was running into Tropical Storm winds.  It was so strong that I would come out from behind a building and would get hit by the crosswind and get knocked sideways a little bit.  It was pretty crazy.  When I got back the rain had started pretty well so we decided to go to Wonderworks which is a science type center with lots of hands on things for the kids to do.  The kids call it the "Upside Down House."  They had tons of fun there.  When we were finished we walked around the little "Broadway at the Beach" area it was located in.  It reminded me a bit of Downtown Disney in a way.  Cute with lots of shops and restaurants. It was a little too early for dinner so we went back to the hotel to pack a bit before going to dinner.

Day 6 (Saturday): We got up around 8 or so this last morning, finished packing, and hopped in the car to head home.  A few miles down the road we stopped at a huge store that had a fruit stand, fireworks, random vacation stuff, etc.  The ride home was pretty uneventful and we got home around 9pm.

It was a pretty good vacation overall but I can't say that I will go back to Myrtle Beach.  Florida and Georgia will always have my heart =)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Getting Back in the Groove...

I still haven't gotten together a post about vacation but I am itching to write so here I am.  =) We are supposed to get a huge storm tonight similar to the one we got in late June last year.  It has the possibility of turning into a Derecho (Long lasting, straight, damaging winds) also like last year.  It's pretty frustrating and I am kicking myself that we didn't buy a generator earlier this year when we were considering it.  Last year we were without electric a total of 5 days and some others in my county were without for 14-15 days.  It was pretty crazy.  People were rushing to anywhere that said they had ice because places were running out really quickly when they got it in and they had bag limits on what you could buy.  The husband is supposed to stop today and pick a bunch up for our deep freezer.  Luckily last year my mom, who lives an hour away, wasn't affected and she and my step dad brought me their generator to use and we could run a couple fans and the fridge... Here's hoping it's not as bad.  Anyway, that is why I am wanting to get a post out there in case my electric goes out for a few days! On to the actual topic of this post!!

I am having SUCH a hard time running regularly without having a schedule to follow and something specific to train for! When I was training for The Flying Pig I was really focused.  If I missed a run, I was sure to make it up because I knew it was a bad idea to miss training runs when I was going to be running 13 miles in the near future.  Now I have this 10k coming up on June 29th that I am excited about but for some reason my motivation is waning.  I think mostly because I know that I can run the race without super scheduled training and I am not expecting to get the time that I want because I apparently suck at running in the heat.  My next half is in November so in August I will start a training program again to get ready for that but until then I have been doing terribly.

While we were on vacation we had a total of 6 days.  2 of those were partial days because of travel with 4 whole days at the beach.  Of those 4 days- I ran 3 of them.  There is something wonderful for motivation about just being able to ride down the elevator and take off running with no worries of being run over by crazy drivers since there is a nice sidewalk/exercise trail as well as a bike lane when that runs out.  Here at home, if I want to run somewhere that I don't have to worry about those things I have to drive somewhere.  I wish I wasn't so worried about how people drive because there are actually some decent back roads but people drive these curvy, hilly, can't-hardly-see-anything roads wayyyyy too fast and there are no berms...

The road in the background there is a pretty good representation except it doesn't show the huge hill to the right and the blind curve you hit when you continue down the road to the left of me.  Last year when we were running that road the husband and I both almost got hit by some j*rk who refused to get over even a little bit even though nothing was coming the opposite direction.  On top of that we live in fairly small towns so basically 5 miles is all you can eek out and after that you have to loop or run up and down streets.  It's annoying....

Anyway, I haven't been too successful at getting up super early like I have wanted since I have such a hard time getting to sleep at night.  Generally I have been getting to town at around 8am and because of stretching and getting situated to leave it is probably 15 after before I even get started.  I really, really need to attempt to get out the door by 7 or so. 

Ok, so this is apparently turning into a whining post because I have yet another reason my motivation is suffering. My 3 mile, 5 mile, and 6 mile paths are all fairly desolate on bike paths surrounded by woods. The drug/crime problem is escalating fairly badly in this area which is one of the reasons we are trying to get a fast pass out of here.  I have a CCW license and in the winter I run with protection but I have noticed it is harder to carry with summer clothing.  

If you have made it this far through my whining you get a gold star!  I am not usually one to whine without trying to do something to fix it, so here is my plan:

1) I am going to break out my half marathon program and jump back to week 6 or so and start working forward again.  I figure this will keep me on track fairly well and that way when I start in August for my fall half I can focus on improving my speed because my endurance should be there.

2) I am going to hit and attempt to map a few more routes to follow through town.  Don't know how successful this will be but I am going to give it a go!

3) I am going to try to get to bed by around 10pm to make it easier to get up in the morning instead of my normal 12-1am.  I figure after a couple days of getting up early it won't be that difficult to get myself in bed by 10pm =)

In all, I hope that I can get into a good groove again because I don't want to lose what I have gained over the last few months running!

Happy Running!!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

I'm Back! and KT Tape winners!

Hey, all! I made it back in from vacation last night and we are settling in and getting all the dreaded laundry done! We had a great time, though, and I can't wait to share about all the things we did, and of course the runs I took along the beach.  However, I am pretty exhausted this evening and just wanted to drop in and announce the winners of the KT tape giveaway!

Karen Orozco and Zaneta!!

Congratulations and check your email! =)

Happy Running!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Time to check out! No, really, go now!

...Well, read this first, then go!
(If you missed my first post about Kindrunner you can see it HERE) goes live TODAY, 6/3, and I am super excited to check out all the great things going on!

I got an email this week that profiled more of the great aspects of this new business.  This is truly a revolutionary experience that I just know you are going to want to be involved in. I know I am proud to be an ambassador!

Some of the amazing things Kindrunner is incorporating into this experience:

  • First and foremost, you get to trade in those old running shoes that are clogging up your closet space. Those shoes, instead of ending up in a landfill or the back of the closet under a pile of bags/purses (if it's my house), will be going to a charity such as Soles 4 Souls and the More Foundation to provide shoes to someone in need of them.  
  • In exchange for trading in your old shoes you will get Kindness Cash Rewards. What that means is that once you receive your new shoes and use the provided mailing label to send your old shoes in you will get a credit on your account for $10 to use in the future.  So, since each label is worth $10, if you buy 3 new pairs of shoes and ship 3 old pairs back to them you will have a $30 credit on your account in the near future.  Great right?! Oh! Also, they never expire and you can use them on anything Kindrunner will be selling (they will have much more than shoes!)
  • Free shipping all 3 ways.  Your new shoes to you, your old shoes to Kindrunner, and your shoes back to Kindrunner if there is a problem.
  • You are getting the perks of a running store at your fingertips.  There will be  expert product review videos on the listing for each item which is handy! I know the first thing I do before I buy something is look for a review from someone who knows what they are talking about!
  • They are also introducing Confident Runner Pricing which means they will reward you for knowing what you want.  Say you have run in the same shoes for years, know that you love them, and there is no way you will need to send them back or perhaps you just know this is the shoe for you?  They have an extra reward for you.  At checkout you will be able choose this option.  Though it will waive the return shipping if there is an issue you will still get free shipping to you and of your old shoes back to Kindrunner. The perk? You get the shoe below retail price for this option!
  • You have 365 days to return the shoes as long as they are in the original condition and original packaging.  So if you ordered them and got injured? No problem.  You can ship them back with no questions asked.
  • And finally, there is an awesome program going on for their first 500 customers. "Free Socks for Life."  Every time one of these first 500 customers returns and buys a new pair of shoes they will get to choose a pair of socks from the inventory to ship with their new shoes.. for FREE!
All of this sounds amazing, right? I can't wait to start shopping for new shoes!  You really need to go check them out and have them on your radar for your next shoe (and other running related) purchase!

Happy Running (and shopping!)