Monthly Archives: July 2011

Workout wrap-up…

The "rose ceremony" of my workouts

There you have it.  Goal km’s met! (Albeit via some sneaky tactics and spin-doctoring)

* I didn’t complete Sunday’s run at all.  Didn’t even lace up the sneakers.  Why you ask?  Maybe I’m lazy?  Maybe I didn’t want to be found in a ditch half-chewed to death by a ferocious dingo?  Answer: a little of column A, a little of column B.

Please turn your attention to the two large red circles in the above diagram.  Ahem, moving along…

It all started Saturday.  I was dutifully shuffling through a 13.5km run along the, normally, painstakingly uneventful road near my parents’ house.  Before I go on, a bit of context (to help get you on my side).  I’m not a fan of running at the Bootman homestead.  Mostly because I would rather spend my mornings sleeping off a Party Mix coma than working it off, but also because I’m a scaredy cat.  Between the bears, dogs and manure stenches that I have encountered, it’s easy to talk myself out of braving the wilds of rural eastern Ontario.  So to combat my (only somewhat) irrational fears, I now drive 1.5km to the end of their road and start my run from there, because until last Saturday I truly believed that bears and Cujo-like dogs only lived on gravel roads.  Like the naive little city runner that I am.

Back to Saturday…at around the 12km mark or so, I heard a bark from across the road.

Me: “Surely that large, angry looking dog isn’t going to cross the highway at lightening speed towards me…”

3.4 seconds later…

Me: “GETYOURDOG!!GETYOURDOG!!GETTHISCRAZY,FOAMY,FANGY,DOGOFFMEEEEE!!!” (followed by shrieks at various decibels)

Within seconds this Cujo dog had catapulted himself across the road and had me pushed into the ditch with it’s blood-stained teeth bearing and wildly disheveled, mangy fur raised.  So I screamed and screamed and then once more for good measure and only by God’s grace, it decided not to tear out my jugular and instead ran back to it’s death lair.  Now I know I’m making light of this now, but it was probably one of the scariest things I have ever encountered.  That dog was mean and there was no one in sight to help me.  So a shout out to the Big Guy for being there, as always, even when I’m not expecting it.  This little encounter made me realize that a) I have no idea what to do if attacked by a dog and b) I had a reason not to run on Sunday.  Y’know, shock and all that.  So Sunday was a recoup day.  (Plus it turned out that I had to be on the road by 8am for a work conference and there was no way that I was getting up pre-6am on the weekend.)


**Monday run in Ottawa = FAIL.  Oh I had visions of jogging along the sunny Rideau Canal and waving at the cool Ottawites through the Byward market, but I awoke to rain instead.  And (gladly) retreated to my plush upgraded suite’s king size bed at the Westin for a few more hours of indulgent sleep.  Decadent!  But no 5k for me and two recoup days in a row!

*** Thursday’s quick run…I did 4k instead of the 5k I had planned because it was hot and disgusting.  Yes, even at 5:30am.

**** So by now you may be wondering how the crap I SURPASSED my weekly km goal with all this skipping and excuse making?  You see, I know me pretty well.  And because I know me pretty well, I built in two “cheat” days.  I didn’t plan any workouts for the weekend and then used them in my “tally”.  Get used to it because that’s how I roll.  (Spoiler alert: you’ll notice on week two’s plan I have “OFF” for both weekend days.  Muwahaha…)

Throw me a frickin' bone

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Kickin’ asphalt…eventually.

Alrighty kiddos, here’s round two for operation “Kick Asphalt!”.

A painfully slow crawl towards 45%

But because I am a bad blogger and was very busy this weekend dry walling, eating out, and generally ignoring you all, you’ll have to c’mon back tomorrow for this past week’s workout wrap up.  Did I make it? Cheat? Get eaten by a dingo?….Yes, yes and narrowly escaped with all of my tendons still intact.  What an excuse adventure!

True story...for realisies...ish.

Yessss!!

Love, love, love waking up to this email!

Baller

Many thanks to the lovely Hooles for loaning me her precious Garmin after the unfortunate demise of mine.

Dear old dumpster Garmin, you’ve been replaced but will not forgotten.  Thanks for the “good times”!

Dear new and improved Garmin, can’t wait to meet you and here’s to many miles ahead!  And you better not be an ebay lemon or it’s the dumpster for you too.

Before I chicken out…

…here’s my “Kick asphalt!” torture plan for the week. Normally I wouldn’t run almost everyday (obviously or else I wouldn’t be in this stupid predicament) but I’m just try to play a bit of catch up over the next couple of weeks.  Wish me luck!

(PS – lots of excuses tied into this plan already…but hey, are you surprised?) 

(PPS – that was a test!  NO EXCUSE ENABLING!)

(PPPS – anyone looking for an unmotivated, whiny, but HELLUVA good dancer, running partner?  I’m in the book.)

Without any further (ridiculous) procrastination…click to enlarge…or don’t…it’s not like I’m forcing everyone to babysit me…or am I?  *crinkly thinking face* Yep…yep I am.  Welp, here goes nothing…except my ego.  Ok seriously, I’m done.

Drumroll….the plan!

Real runners, ignore this because it's not that hard. Everyone else, humour me too please.

Confessions of a control freak

I need help.

Things have been super crazy around here.  Between wedding and social planning hysteria and maniacal exercising to prep for aforementioned wedding and social butterflying (e.g. bootcamp, yoga, WINE club, race training and teaching spin) it’s been nutters.  And it’s time to take a breath.  Ahhh.  With zero after-work commitments, only teaching a mere ONE class a week and no planned races in sight – I’ve got some major free time on my hands.  Which is exactly what I thought I needed.  Turns out, I don’t function well like that.

All free and no plan, makes FR go crazy

When I commit to something, I’m fairly decent at following through.  I’m reward goal oriented. I like structure.  I like calendars and to-do lists and day planners.  It’s kind of my thing.  When I accomplish something, I check it off.  I wear my medal around the house like a bratty douche.

But all of a sudden my calendar is wide open…no goals, no commitments and I’m turning into procrastinator extraordinaire.  My typical morning now consists of me waking up and thinking “Mornings suck.  But don’t worry if you don’t run now, you can do it after work! You have all the time in the world! Muwahaha!” Hooray – snooze button, roll over, smile.  Then at about 4:26pm, I think “Blah running.  Go home to your adorable husband and dog (and couch).  You can run tomorrow – you’ve got no reason not to!”  And so on. Next thing I know, it’s Thursday and I’ve logged 3km and half a spin class.  You get me?  When my schedule was jam packed, I knew that I HAD to fit a run in at 5:30am on “run day”, because after work/next morning/whenevs was already booked.  Now, I’m just pushing everything until the next day and nothing is getting done.  This must be what management feels like.

Inner thoughts

Just replace "stuff" with "running"

Source

I fear for this 2011km challenge.  I’m a *smidge* (aka: WAYSUPERDUPERNEVEREVERCATCHINGUP) off track.  BUT I have a plan!  And this is where I need your help.  Hey judgey friends, this one’s for you.

In an effort to be accountable and not push the next (OMFG) 1000ish kilometers right into December, I’m going to be sharing my weekly workout plans with y’all.  Lucky ducks!  How embarrassing would it be to say that I’m going to do this, this, and this and then actually just spoon with my dog every morning and watch endless episodes of Entourage every night.

Hmm, run or swoon?

The idea is that I’ll post my weekly plan and then let you all know how I did afterward.  But make sure that you keep me in line, m’kay?  There will be absolutely no enabling of excuses, soothing my ego, holding my hand…you need to get all Ari Gold on my ass.  Got it? Good.

Stay tuned…I’ll be posting this week’s plan-of-attack just as soon as I figure it out.  Right after I see how this Johnny Drama and Turtle thing plays out…

Thirty-one pieces of useless information

It was my birthday this week and in honour of, well, me…here are 31 things that you may or may not know about me.  Or things that you may or may not care to know about me. Hooray – fantastic reading ahead!  (By the way, 31 is a totally arbitrary number…no reason for it at all.  Like that I’m old. )

  1. My middle name is Michelle. (See? Told you that this was going to be riveting)
  2. I DETEST olives…the smell of the grocery store olive cart makes me want to heave into my basket. (Bonus tidbit: I hate using shopping carts and make Muffin push it every time)
  3. I passed my driving test on the first try and have never been pulled over by ‘the fuzz’.  However, I am ready to pull out the tears and shameless flirting when it does happen.
  4. I have never been stung by a bee.  And yet I squeal like a Deliverance victim whenever I see/hear/sense anything with a “stinger” come within 20ft of me.  (I’ve pulled over the car to jump out after having a bee dive bomb fly in the window)
  5. My pet peeves are people who wear sunglasses inside and people who talk in a fake accent.  Even if they are just kidding around (“Vunderbar!” kills me).
  6. I don’t know the real words to very many songs, however I sing like I do.  I just mumble and make sounds that resemble the real lyrics.  For example, I always thought the words to Enter Sandman were : “Excel light…ends tonight” and very recently realized that those words don’t make sense.  I googled the real words (yes, I have time to do that) and they are “Exit lightEnter night”.  Ahhh.  Very important stuff here.
  7. I had my nose pierced for almost 10 years!  (And my Dad asked me if I was a lesbian…)
  8. I **accidentally** peed my pants in a fit of laughter during one particularly funny dinner when I was, like 9, and my evil sister called me “Big Bad Mama Pee-Head” for the rest of the summer.  And for a couple of years after that…
  9. If a cashier or server forgets an item on my bill, I always tell them.  And it bothers me when I get home and realize they forgot something…karma, man.
  10. I crave dill pickle and peanut butter sandwiches.  For reals.  Try it.  But don’t get all up in my grill when you realize you are addicted.
  11. I smoked a whole cigarette to myself in grade 9 and immediately turned green and puked.  (Outside the dentist office while waiting for my friend…and smoking her cigarettes)
  12. I love it when anyone plays with my hair.  Muffin thinks that I would pay hobos to do it.  I think it’s a brilliant idea.
  13. I’m kind of sick of running.  (See what I did there? I’m trying to hide this one in the hopes that no one has actually read this far)
  14. I don’t know what paradigm shift means…and I *may* have used it in a sentence once or twice.
  15. I hated gym in high school and used to wear pj bottoms instead of shorts to prove how much I didn’t care about trampolining and badminton.  Super cool.
  16. It drives me nutters when chip bags are opened upside down or when someone eats a hamburger the wrong way (top bun on the bottom).  Sadly, I’m quite serious…I have to look away.
  17. I’m putting “learn to knit” on my to-do list…again.
  18. When I was in second or third grade (…or both) I wanted to change my name to “Tootie”, based on the snappy character from the Facts of Life.  The ‘Natalie’ character was frumpy and dorky and I considered myself to be way funkier.  But a seven year old doesn’t think big picture…my maiden name is “Boot”which would have made me “Tootie Boot”.
  19. I used to collect Disney cartoon movies and I still have all of my VHS copies.  And I still like to watch them.  C’mon…who doesn’t love The Little Mermaid on a rainy Sunday?
  20. I rarely get mosquito bites. They just don’t crave tiger blood, I guess.
  21. I MUST turn the radio station when Rush, Nickelback or Amanda Marshall come on.  They just irritate me.
  22. I love the calluses on Muffin’s hands. (He’s half muffin, half stud)
  23. My rib was cracked (or really bruised/crushed?) while trying to master the Dirty Dancing lift with Mr. Bravo in Cuba.
  24. My first job was at McDonald’s and I had a huge crush on my manager…Coooorey. Ah.
  25. I can’t decide which is worst…wet dog smell or B.O.  Sadly, I’m surrounded by both quite often.
  26. I love the Far Side.
  27. I have never seen Goonies.  Muff might call this whole marriage thing off now.
  28. When I was really young, I opened the backdoor to let our family dog out, which sadly led to her demise. (She beelined after a car and was hit)  My family still likes to tell me that I killed Ginger.  I still tell my therapist.
  29. The words “peruse” and “utilize” annoy me.
  30. I don’t mind nails on a chalkboard, but the thought of two serrated edges rubbing together (i.e. a quarter and a butter knife) gives me the heebers.
  31. Given the choice I wouldn’t do my twenties all over again, even though they hold some of my fave memories and my thighs were much thinner.  I think my thirties are going to be where it’s at.

Remember that time I ran a race?

…and I promised to write a recap?  Well, patient readers – here it is!

What seems like many, many moons ago (but was really only 2 weeks), Muffin and I packed up and headed to charming Prince Edward County so that I could torture myself, and Muffin, for a few hours.  Helloooo Wellington Women’s Half-Marathon!

We're heeere!

Ladies lining up

Now if I was a good blogger, I would have either a) posted all of the gory details right after the race while the memories were fresh or b) made some type of notes so that I could recall the details.  But I’m not that kind of gal, so bear with me while crawl through the cobwebs and wine hangovers of my mind to scrape together some recollection of the event.  But if my crappy memory serves me right, I won the race.  And didn’t sweat or get blotchy or snot-rocket once.  And I did cartwheels for the last 3km.  Yep, I think that’s roughly how it went.  Unfortunately for me, Muffin took photos.  Photos = proof.

The race had a million little nice touches…you could tell it was planned by the ladies.  No offence fellas, but specialty spa SPF application pre-race, a Zumba warm-up, firemen water stations and a handmade necklace “medal” don’t really scream “this race was the brain child of hearty manly men! Hoowah!”

Anti-Zumba warm-up

 (The majority of women participated in the Zumba warm-up, but I wasn’t prepared for that sort of public humility before I even crossed the start line, so I stood by the sidelines…awkwardly, obs)

We're off...(I kept up the waving to my fans for the first few km)

Half way around the track...4th place! I'll savour this 'cause it didn't last long.

Just over the finish line....clearly hunting down the chocolate milk.

Sporting my new bling

Let’s get down to the nitty gritty…

Pros:

– The vibe was awesome -lots of friendly gals, chatting, smiling, matching outfits, hugging…just being girls.  I love it.  Not bad eye candy for Muffin either.  (Thank goodness because not too many other husbands were there as head cheerleader, like mine. I owed him eye candy.)   It wasn’t a super competitive race at all…in fact, even with my crappy time (not a PW (personal worst), but a few minutes slower than more usual time) I managed to place 7th overall.  Generally, a friendly, casual race.

– Like I mentioned, it was the little touches that made this race special.  My fave…the signs along the way…”What a girl won’t do for a necklace”, etc.

Cons:

– Now this is just my preference, but I’m not a fan of country runs.  In fact, when I realized that the whole route was likely going to be in the wilderboonies, I almost turned right back around.  Boooooring.  I like to look at houses, stores, people…ANYTHING to take my mind off the fact that I’ll be wheezing and sweating for the next few hours.  The only folks cheering you through the various levels of hell are the volunteers.  Not going to cut it for me.  I need my peeps, my fans, the horns and whistles and cowbells.  Puhleeease someone drown out my suicidal thoughts.

– Second item kind of ties in with the first…sunny fields and gravel roads.  Yikes.  No shade and terrain that I’m definitely not used to.  At one point I ran by a field with giant solar panels in it and thought, “you know there is no shade to be found when people are generating electricity with the relentless power of this sonovabitch sun…”

– Some of the ‘half a half’ (why they don’t just say 10k is beyond me) walkers were finishing up at the same time as me.  I had 4 walkers crossing the finishing line in front of me -HOLDING HANDS! -which not only slowed me down a few seconds (I like to open ‘er up through the finish) but also blocked my only professional race photo of the day.  Lame.  There is a series of about six shots of the walkers strutting through the finish line and one of me after the fact.  Not really a deal breaker, but annoying nonetheless.

So in short…if you are ok with country, scenic races (and have a vageejay), this race is probably for you!  If you crave distraction in the forms of buildings, concrete and homeless people, stay outta PEC.

Btw, in a surprising twist of events…my knee, leg, groin, etc. felt pretty good throughout the whole race.  I’m thinking that the plan to avoid long runs for a few weeks really did the trick.  The rest and re-coup did the ol’ IT band pretty good and I ran (somewhat) pain free the whole time.  Not including the regular I’m outta shape and ate too much Baskin Robbins during my “training” pain.

Thanks Muffin for cheering me on...again!