Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Serendipity: is the effect by which one accidentally discovers something fortunate, especially while looking for something entirely unrelated.

As many of you know, my life has been quite chaotic lately. I'm a single mom during the week while my husband is working two hours north. I have had to rent out our house and get it ready for the tenants to move in. I recently discovered that finding a place to rent is not that easy and I made two trips to our new stomping grounds to secure a home for our family so we don't have to live out of our cars.

Through all of this, I am sad to leave a city I love, incredible friends and a newly formed running group (of said friends) . The idea of starting over socially is just as scary as anything else. Enter serendipity.

I was checking out a condo to possibly rent and met a woman who is an Ironman alum!! When I pulled up to the condo and saw a woman in a tech shirt, running shoes and shorts and a visor, I knew I was dealing with good people. She and I spent more time talking about running, biking and swimming than we did lease terms and square footage. We seem to run about the same pace (her half marathon PR is very similar to mine). When I asked her if she ran with a group, she said no. The gears started turning. She talked about a twenty mile run that goes from Yorba Linda (where we are moving) to the beach along the Santa Ana River. She has always wanted to do it, but didn't want to do it by herself. I practically jumped up and down and squealed, "I will! I will!" As a matter of fact, as I think back, I may have actually done that.

We have exchanged information and have tentatively planned to go on a run together. It may seem like a little thing, but after the last couple of weeks, meeting a potential running partner is HUGE.

I think my life is starting to fall into place. We are moving this weekend and then I can start on the next chapter of my life.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I'm feeling a little mojo!! All I needed was a non-run run.

I met my friend, Jen, this morning to hike up Cowles Mountain, a local peak that has a 1.5 mile steep trail to the top. She and I set off at a nice brisk pace. Our goal was not to go on a leisurely hike, but to get a good workout. I was sweaty, but felt great. It is getting hotter again here, but not unbearably so. She and I chatted the entire time, working our lungs quite a bit.

At the top, we stopped for a minute or two and admired the view smog. SMOG??? This is San Diego... where is smog coming from? At least the air was clean at the top of Cowles.

We sipped on some water and headed back down. We ran down. And oh what a feeling. It was a great run. My quads feel it, but in a really good way. We chatted some more and watched our step. It reminded me how much I want to do more trail running. I think I could have run up it (most of it anyway), but I really enjoyed the brisk walking instead.

No Garmin. No watch. Just great company and a fun workout. We're doing it again next week!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Biggest Loser is Back!

I am a huge fan of The Biggest Loser and am excited that it is back for another season. There is something about that show that I love. It is so inspiring. On one hand, I can't believe that these people let themselves get to where they are. On the other hand, they lose amazing amounts of weight by learning how to make good choices with food and exercise. They change their lives. Is the Biggest Loser situation realistic? Not at all. People in the real world don't get to exercise hours and hours a day. But they learn how to exercise and learn what their bodies can do. I know that several previous Biggest Loser contestants have gained their weight back, but many have kept it off. Isn't that what it is all about?

As much as I love Jillian Michaels, I have a HUGE beef with her (or at least her organization). I was looking for something on her website (I LOVE her workouts) and out of curiosity clicked on the "free weight loss plan." Just so you know, I do NOT want to lose weight. I filled out the questionnaire honestly with my current weight and physical activity (5'6", 117 pounds*, working out 4-6 days a week) The "free" weight loss guide was a bunch of common sense stuff. The website then prompted me to sign up for her paid program. WHAT?? They will take my money to help me reach my ridiculous and ficticious goal weight of 110 pounds???!! That is actually criminal. I am so disappointed that there are fitness professionals out there helping 5'6" women try to reach 110 pounds or less. Why would you assist someone with a BMI under 19 to lose more weight??

I'm all for making money for helping people get fit, but there should be a limit. It should be about helping people get healthy.

On the running front... well, there is no running front. I haven't run since labor day. I'm just going to focus on what is going on in my life and worry about the running later. I'll probably go for an easy run this weekend. Tomorrow I am going on a brisk hike up Cowles Mountain with my friend. Maybe we'll even run a bit. I have decided not to stress.

To jump start my motivation, however, I am seriously considering running the P.F. Chang's Rock-n-Roll Marathon in January. I'm going to start the training on October 1st.

*I am actually a little shorter than 5'6" and don't usually weigh myself, but figure I am between 115 and 120.

Friday, September 11, 2009


Oz Runner is hosting a birthday giveaway with a few cool things in his prize package. Hurry... today is the last day!

Tall Mom on the Run
also has a giveaway. She is giving away a gift certificate for some great running jewelry/accessories. This woman always has fantastic giveaways. I don't know how she does it!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I want my mojo back...

It is a good thing that I didn't take up running this month because I don't think I would have stuck with it. I am getting out for runs (albeit very few of them) because I think I should rather because I really want to. I am afraid of losing my running completely, so I am running. Running has been my escape and my "me" time. But not lately. Where did my love of running go?? Where is that runner's high??

I went out for a run on Monday*. I was going to get up early, but slept in**. I didn't get down to the the bay/beach until 9 a.m. Thankfully, our weather has cooled off considerably. It would have been even nicer a couple of hours earlier. I was hoping to have a great run. Maybe my expectations were too high. It wasn't as though it was a bad run. In fact, my pace was pretty good--9:06 average. I ran the fourth mile in 8:06 and the two miles after that under 9 minutes. The rest were closer to 9:30. Those splits should make me happy. I was hoping to have an effortless run. Do those even exist?

I think that since I am only getting one real quality run a week, I am trying to put too much into it. I think I would have had more fun if I would have just run a nice easy pace. Why do I insist on going so much faster than my training pace and throwing in tempo miles and feeling spent? Next week I really need to slow down and enjoy myself.

There are a few things going on that are affecting my runs. Actually, my lack of runs might be affecting those things. It is like the chicken and the egg. I haven't been eating well. The more I run, the better I eat. But the crappier I eat, the less I want to run. See the cycle? It doesn't help that I am not making "grown up" food for dinner. Most of the time, I make something for the kids that I know they'll eat and I just snack. Also, I am getting back into a dangerous soda habit. When I am running four or five days a week, I don't drink (much) soda. These days, I'm drinking way too much. So am I having crappy runs because I am eating/drinking crap? Or am I eating/drinking crap because of a lack of quality runs?

Unfortunately, right now I can't increase the amount of time spent running due to the fact that my husband is working two hours away. One quality run a week is all I can really count on. I can usually squeeze in a second run during the week. That should be tomorrow, but I have a garage sale to get ready for and a potential renter coming to look at my house. I need my precious hours without the kids to get stuff done.

I want to get some fun back into my running. So until I move north and establish a new routine, I am going to slow down and enjoy San Diego. Several of my friends have asked about group runs. I stopped doing them after we stopped training for the half marathon. I really enjoyed them as I know the other women did. I am going to try to set something up for this weekend. It will accomplish a couple of goals: spend quality time with my friends, make sure I get up and out early (before it gets hot) and slow down and relax while running.

Once we move*** I will start training for a race. I have a November half marathon where I am pacing a friend and the Ragnar relay in February. I am also seriously considering P.F. Chang's Rock-N-Roll Arizona in January, Carlsbad Half Marathon in January and Surf City Half Marathon in February. Training for a race gives me focus. Maybe some focus is what I need right now.

*I didn't go for my normal Sunday run because it was my son's 6th birthday and I love being there when he wakes up. It is so exciting to wake up and be a year older!
**The birthday celebration the evening before took it out of me.
***I wish I knew when that will be. We are trying to rent out our house and minimize paying double. Living in limbo is tough.


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