Well, this poor blog.
I try to just walk away but I just can't quit it. I *need* a place to express my thoughts. Despite keeping paper journals for decades of my life, I just don't have it in me to write in a paper journal. And God knows I couldn't possible turn to actual people to get things off my chest. So, Xanga it is!
I'm not even sure where to start. Let's see - what has happened since March? Well, in March we went skiing in Colorado with another family with whom we have become good friends. That was a lot of fun. In June, I took my my to Paris and to Madrid (her first trip, ever). I wanted everything to be top-notch for the trip, and it was. We stayed in an enormous suite at the Westin right in the Opera district and our room had a direct view of the Eiffel Tower. God is good. We went to Jamaica at the end of June for a week, and that was wonderful, as always. In October, I went back to Spain, this time to Cordoba, for another work-related trip.
In December, we went to Las Vegas, and I ran in the RNR Las Vegas Marathon - my time was 4:09:??. My goal was 4:00, but even though I did not achieve that, I was still very happy with my race. This was the first marathon where I ran the *entire* time. Usually, by Mile 18 or Mile 21, I am starting to walk the water stops, at a minimum - but this race, I just kept running. I really wanted to stop and walk around Mile 20, but I saw my whole cheering crew right then, which was a huge Godsend! It was incredibly windy the entire race which made it really tough - and I was thankful for windy training runs, that's for sure. I read a review of the race on marathonguide.com that said one could reasonably substract 5 or 10 minutes from one's race time due to the wind. If that's true, then I really did break 4 hours! :)
One great thing about this race was that I finally changed my mindset to think, "I can *do* this." I wasn't checking my Garmin much during the race, but the thing that kept me running was just believe that I *could* run the entire marathon and that I was trained and could and should be able to finish in 4 hours. I didn't quite get there, but the wind made it tough, and I did get a 5 minute PR, to boot.
I'm not sure what's next. I've been kind of numb throughout this New Year's process. Everyone is talking about resolutions and goals and I have none. I will run another full, but I'm not sure when. It may be as early as the Spring, or maybe not. Whenever I do run another one, I want to make sure I break 4 hours. I also want to do Insanity at some point.
Overall, though, I haven't felt fired up at all about this year. My uncle passed away in December, and when I traveled home for the funeral, I marveled at how old everyone is. Everyone in my mother's generation is now silver-haired, using walkers, canes, etc. That is CRAZY! And everyone in my generation is graying, putting on weight, etc. This life shit is a TRIP.
I am supremely blessed - I am so blessed to be healthy and have the status quo in my life ... but I just can't get excited about it. I hate that because I don't want to have to have my blessings taken away for me to "learn" their value. I have prayed about this and the only message I have received is that I need to help people. That helping others will get me excited and ignite my spirit. But I just don't know how yet. I have always thought about being a foster mother - but I'm also terrified to do something like that!!
I'll keep praying, and in the meantime, thanking God for all of my abundant blessings!
Here are the rules:
1. Post these rules (check!)
2. You must post 11 random things about yourself
3. Answer the questions set for you by the person who tagged you
4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer
1. I can't swim
2. My hair started turning grey when I was about 27. I have more grey hair than either of my parents.
3. I used to look just like my dad - for my whole life - but started looking just like my mom once I turned 42 or so.
4. I can't swallow pills.
5. I used to love horror movies - but outgrew them sometime in my late 20s, maybe? I still love thrillers, though.
6. I love, love, love documentaries.
7. I want to travel to places that make me go wide-eyed because of the dramatic contrast to where and how I live.
8. I was a French major in college but now my Spanish is better than my French.
9. Jaguars used to be my ultimate fantasy car for many years, but now I'd love a Porsche (Cayenne or sports car) or a Range Rover (the big one).
10. I'm still a big Erykah Badu fan, but for whatever reason, not as much as before ...
- If you could live anywhere in the world for just a year – where would you live? - JAMAICA, of course
- What were you like in high school? - Popular and a bit of a spaz. Also, angelic 9th & 10th and not-so-angelic 11th & 12th.
- How old were you when you had your first kiss? - 15
- What is your go-to coffee or tea order? - I'm not a Starbucks/Peet's, etc. person. I don't drink coffee. If I have tea, I make it myself - usually green tea or chamomile with 2 sugars.
- How many states have you lived in? - 3 + D.C., which is not a state
- When was the last time you told someone you loved them? - this morning (husband)
- What is your favorite color? - white
- Favorite cartoon character? - Mr. Crabs
- What were you doing a year ago today? - Getting ready to go to San Antonio for a quick spring break vacation.
- What do you want to be when you grow up? - A woman of leisure
- Today is going to be a great day because… - I'm alive
My 11 questions to anyone out there:
1. What is your biggest fear?
2. What is your favorite movie genre?
3. What do you spend most of your "extra" money on?
4. Do you prefer talking or texting?
5. Beach or mountains?
6. Which parent do you look the most like?
7. Speak any foreign languages?
8. What's your favorite candy?
9. Do you sleep in socks?
10. What do you grab when you are starving?
11. Favorite teacher ever?
|tired overworked stressed out of shape old fading declining mad resentful closed frustrated afraid restless bored pissed the fuck off sagging forgetful procrastinating anxious moody as hell lonely loner know-it-all control freak frumpy struggling depressed repressed oppressed stifled burdened |
I'm feeling all of the above - and allowing myself to wallow. And?
- I am in a funk of one of the worst kinds: a work funk. Work funk = STRESS. Uugh!
- Actually, marathon training helps a LOT in these moments. When things get really tough (in my head, usually), I tell myself, "Put your head down and PUSH THROUGH."
- Speaking of marathons: Chevron Houston Marathon results: 4:14:19!
- The experience was yet another affirmation that GOD IS GOOD.
- The day before the marathon, after walking around to watch the Olympic Trials, I couldn't even walk. My left achilles/leg were KILLING ME.
- I am stubborn, though, and I knew that even if I couldn't, God could. And He did!
- The race was tough for me, especially the last 5 miles. I am proud of myself for digging deep.
- I will post my Daily Mile race report below.
- Anyway, I was very happy with the outcome: STARTED the race, FINISHED the race, got a 6 minute PR. I didn't run the 4 hour time that was my secret dream, but that's ok.
- I think I peaked around the time of the RNR Vegas Half. The 1:52 I ran there was pretty much effortless. In the marathon, I slowed over the last miles, not so much because of my achilles, but because I was dehydrated and tired - and the soles of my feet were on FIRE. My fitness was not nearly what it was in December.
- If I do another full (and I think I will - but no time soon), I will use Pfitz's 12 week program.
- I had no choice but to use the 18 weeks this time around b/c I was so out shape coming into the training cycle, but hopefully I can keep a base level of fitness, do the 12 week program and get my 4 hour marathon!!
- Anyway, back to my work funk - it just depresses me. There is a black cloud over me now. I know it will lift but right now there is darkness. I feel heavy. I hate it. This is when I wish that I just worked at the post office or was a homemaker. I know that stress is inevitable (especially for someone like me), but I don't need it to come with the territory.
- I need some candy ... a serotonin boost.
- I saw Black Swan last night. I didn't get home from work until 10pm and turned on the tv while I ate a quick bite. I ended up watching Black Swan and was pretty much riveted throughout the movie. Usually, I'm not a fan of the movies that everyone raves about - but I *love* that movie. Natalie Portman was GREAT. So was the woman who played her mother. I loved the cinematography and direction, too. TWO THUMBS UP.
- I need some candy, but I just had a bunch of dental work done yesterday. That freaking sucks.
- This is the most sore that I have *ever* been after a marathon. 3 days later and I am still walking like Frankenstein. That's how I know I dug deep.
- So, I watched the Olympic Trials. We drove to Houston on Friday night and I did not sleep well at ALL, not to mention that fact that, having not run for a week and having only run 18 miles the week before, I was completely out of the habit of rising super early - BUT I got my butt up at 6 am to head out to watch the trials . I ended up hooking up with this great family: a grandfather, grandmother, the two adult sisters, and the nephew/cousin + his girlfriend -- and me! I ended up tagging along with them all morning. One of the sisters' son was running in the Trials and it was his 1st marathon. It was fun cheering for him - even though it turned out not to be his day and he had to drop out due to cramping. That's ok, he's only 24, so Sean Houseworth, I'll keep my eye on you!
- Anyway, I have rambled long enough. Pray for me ... I'm looking for God to turn the page on this funk that I am in!
|Goodbye 2011 and Hello 2012 ...|
Another year has passed and I am thankful to be alive and healthy and able to greet the New Year. As always, God was very good to me last year. My family has survived intact and we are all healthy and happy.
On December 31, I received sad news that one of the teachers in my daughters' school passed away. She suffered a brain aneurysm and did not survive. She was a single mom to a teenage son, and I can't stop thinking about how mind-boggling it is that she did not live to see the new year. I saw her on the last day of school and, of course, said, "See you next year." And she said the same to me. Did she have any inkling, however faint, that that would not be the case? Her death reminds me that while we are here, we must LIVE.
Looking back at 2011, in reality, it was a somewhat nondescript year. Well, not nondescript, but there were no Big Changes. I am very, very good with that!
Since this is mostly a running collection of bullet points written at various times blog, let's take a look back at 2011 with a focus on fitness and a few other things thrown in for good measure:
After finishing the White Rock Marathon in December 2010 with a PR of 4:20:XX, I needed a break from running.
In January and February, I spent most of my time doing Jillian Michaels' workout videos, most notable Six Weeks to Six Pack Abs. I was also running a little, between 10 and 20 miles per week.
In March and April, I started doing to the TURBO FIRE program and continued running.
In May, I found out that I got into the Houston Marathon! This was exciting news and I dropped all of the DVDs and started to focus on building a base for running.
In June and July, I slogged through a scorching hot Dallas summer trying to get back into shape, boosting my weekly mileage up to 25 or 30 MPW. This was TOUGH! Luckily, I had some traveling breaks: I traveled through Spain and also went on the Disney Cruise.
In August, I finished The Hottest Half in 2:18:XX. Though a personal worst by FAR, I was very proud of this race because it was 100 degrees at the start, I was still not in shape and I was very happy with my conservative pacing!
In September, I ran the Tour des Fleurs 20K race. This has to be one of the worst race experiences I have ever had. 99% humidity + hills = Hell on Earth. After building my base up to several 40 mile weeks, I also started my Pfitz 18/55 training program for Houston in September.
In October, I just kept running ...
In November, I did the DRC Half as a "training run" and earned a new PR, finishing in 1:58:XX. I went on, with several friends, to run 7 more miles afterwards to complete our scheduled 20 miler.
In December, I traveled to Vegas to run in the RNR Las Vegas Half-Marathon and, despite the crazy crowds, got a huge new PR of 1:52:XX!!! I couldn't believe it! This was a HUGE motivation and confidence boost for me to continue with my training for Houston -- now, only 11 DAYS AWAY!!!!!!!!!!
I'll have to talk about my goals for 2012 in another post - but I'll mention one big one: TO CRUSH THAT HOUSTON MARATHON that I have been training so hard for!!!